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    LC59: Wrath of Betazed

    Talaina Kazzur
    Done the Impossible

    Fleet Rank : Vice Admiral
    Number of posts : 721
    Location : Bonnie ol' England
    Ship Name : U.S.S. Viper
    Ship Registry Number : NX-204971-X
    Ship Class : Defiant
    Fleet Division : Command

    LC59: Wrath of Betazed

    Post by Talaina Kazzur on Mon Feb 24, 2014 10:09 am

    Authors Note: This is set after LC 55 and LC58. Claire Dotson would be played by Denise Richards.

    Captain's Log. The Viper has been called off from the search for the Bonaventure and ordered to report to DS9. I can only hope one of the deep space probes we launched can find a trace of the ship. The three Jem'Hadar and their Vorta overseer who served on the Sentinel for so many months as part of the officer exchange program are finally returning back to Dominion space, and have requested we be the ones to take them. An old friend from my previous postings, Doctor Entra, will be joining us on this mission.

    Talaina walked along the upper level of the promenade towards the docking ring. Luawra Entra was stood at one of the windows, watching the wormhole spill forth it's magnificence. It winked out in a flash. Luawara smiled, turning when she sensed Talaina approach.

    "Captain. Congratulations on the promotion."
    "Thank you. How have you been?"
    "Good. I miss starship life, but the recent trouble on Bajor has been keeping me busy." Luawra looked at Talaina's antenna. "Looks like it's growing back well."
    "Yeah. Little tender still, but at least it's mostly regrown. The Viper will be leaving soon. We should get on board."

    The two women turned and started walking towards the docking port. Talaina cast another glance at the Betazoid. "It's strange seeing you out of those black robes you wore on the Sentinel."
    "Yeah, I'm afraid the rest of Starfleet wasn't so accomodating with my request as the Captain was. So, standard uniform for me."

    Someone bumped into Luawra. A human female in an Engineering division uniform, carrying some components. "Oh, I'm sorry. Didn't see you there."
    "That's quite allright. It was an accident."
    Talaina was not so forgiving. "Commander Dotson. Aren't you meant to be finalising Viper's launch checks?"
    "Yes Sir. I just needed to get some components before we left."
    "Very well. On you go."

    As the woman scurried off, Luawra started laughing. "Oh my. You really know how to put fear in your crew."
    "She was more nervous than a Tribble at a Klingon banquet."
    "She's the Chief Engineer. She shouldn't be that nervous."
    "Going into Dominion space? Can you blame her?"
    "True. Come on, Dathan said he wanted to meet you before we set off. Any idea why he requested you be present?"
    "Honestly? I think he has the hots for me."
    Talaina just smirked. The two had a bit of a friendly rivalry on the Sentinel, but being absent made her realise just how much she had enjoyed the rivalry.

    The Viper passed through the wormhole without incident. The three Jem'Hadar were stood on the bridge, quietly waiting for them to reach the rendevous. Dathan, their Vorta, was in Sickbay with Luawra and Bob Juffra, the ship's doctor. Both Betazoids. He seemed very fascinated by that. Talaina quietly drummed her fingers on the arm of her chair. Mirat'Tiklan walked forward and stood at attention beside her.

    "Captain. I wish to express my gratitude to yourself, and Starfleet. This exchange program was an attempt to foster ongoing diplomatic relations between the Dominion and the Federation following the retaking of Deep Space Nine by those time displaced soldiers. I feel it has been successful."
    "Yes Mirat. I feel that as well. It's certainly been an interesting time, and I've learnt alot from your time on the Sentinel."
    "And I have learnt alot as well. MayyeeeAAAARRGHH!"

    Mirat grabbed his head and staggered back. The other two also cried out in pain before collapsing to the deck. Talaina jumped to her feet, but Mirat already went down. She slammed her commbadge. "MEDICAL EMERGENCY ON THE BRIDGE!"

    Mirat started convulsing, foam seeping from his mouth. With a final gasp, he went limp. The doors opened and Luawra, Bob and Dathan all ran onto the bridge. Each one checked a fallen soldier. The two Federation doctors whipped out tricorders and started scanning, but Dathan just shook his head and stood up.

    "Please stop Doctors. There is nothing you can do. I've seen this once before. During the war between our people, there was an attack orchestrated that resulted in sudden and painful death for the Jem'Hadar. An entire battallion was left frothing at the mouth."

    Bob frowned at the readings. "Full pulminary failure. I'm picking up some kind of foreign substance in his system, but I'll need an autopsy to know more."

    Luawra got to her feet. "Dathan, what can you tell us about it?" The Vorta shook his head. "Not much. Only that it happened once during the war. We never knew why it was not used again. And it only seemed to infect the Jem'Hadar. The Vorta and the Founder were completely unharmed." His eyes glazed over, as if remembering something terrible. "Perform your autopsy Doctor. Find out what this is."

    Talaina stepped closer to Dathan. "I'm sorry about this. I hope this doesn't affect relations between our people."
    "Continue to the rendevous. If this affects anything will depend on what we find out."

    Captain's Log. The Viper has arrived at the coordinates. We are waiting the arrival of the Dominion ship carrying our returning officers. I can only hope this doesn't spark another war. The scars of the last one, though forty years ago, are still present across the Alpha Quadrant. Meanwhile, the autopsy on the three Jem'Hadar has been completed. And the results are most disturbing.

    "That's right Captain. Somehow, their blood stream is laced with a strange blend of chemical elements. They're no chemical elements I've ever seen before."
    Ttorkkinn narrowed his eyes. "Show me."

    Bob moved over to a console showing the chemical makeup of various elements. "See? The way they interact with organic tissue, they create a cellular poison. It starts eroding the walls of the blood stream, seeping into the organs where this..... gunk, then starts forming, causing the organs to seize up. The foaming from the mouth is a result of the poison mixing with the Ketracel White."

    Talaina looked over at the bodies. "How did they get infected?"
    "That's the odd part. It looks like it was mixed directly into their supply of White."
    "The only person who has access to that is the Vorta. Are you saying Dathan did this?"
    Luawra put away the last of the tools and shook her head. "No. I sensed no deception from him on the Bridge. Only concern and anger at what happened. But Captain, that's not the most disturbing part." She folded back the sheet, revealling Mirat's stomach. Talaina moved over and gagged. Burnt into his flesh was the word 'Remember'.

    "It seems someone implanted a specifically designed plasma torch that burnt this into him after his death. From the inside."
    Talaina was shocked. "Are you saying...."
    "Yes. Someone wanted to send a message."
    "Remember..... Remember what?"
    "Each one has a different part of the message. 'Always. Remember. Betazed.' I don't know what they mean though."

    Ttorkkinn walked over. "I do. During the first year of the Dominion War, Betazed was captured by the Dominion. I was only a young recruit at the time, but the shock of such a deep strike sent ripples everywhere. It was shortly after that the Romulans joined us. The stories from survivors were..... not pleasant."

    "So you think this is some kind of revenge for Betazed?"
    "I do."
    "Ttorkkinn, I want you to begin an investigation. Find out who did this. I need to go speak to Dathan."

    As Talaina left, Ttorkkinn looked at the bodies again. "Do you know how long ago this was implanted in him?"
    "Best guess..... within the last week."

    "Thank you Doctors. I'll be in touch." As Ttorkkinn left, he was already beginning to formulate a list of suspects. The two Betazoids on board were an obvious choice. Dathan had access to the White. Who else? And what were those chemical elements? The doctors didn't know, but maybe an Engineer would?

    Commander Claire Dotson was checking the power flow to the Cloaking Device when she saw Ttorkkinn enter. She smiled and straightened up. "Commander. What can I do for you?"
    "I need an Engineer's opinion. Can you identify some chemical compounds? The Doctor's can't make heads or tails of it."
    "Of course. Let's see what you've got."

    The two moved to a console and began inspecting the chemicals. Claire tapped her chin as she studied them. "Hmmmm. Well, that part looks like the chemical makeup for Trilithum resin, but it's mutated somehow. I don't recognise that part of it. I'm sorry Commander. Maybe the computer could find a match?"

    "Already tried. It came back with forty seven different elements it could be. Though knowing it's a varient of Trilthium, that may help. Thank you Commander."

    Ttorkkinn left and made his way to the Mess Hall. Since Defiant class ships had no labs to work in, he had occupied this as his base of operations. The plasma torches had been placed in protective casings. He had tried to retrieve some fingerprints or dna from them, but they had apparantly been rigged to burn themselves heavily after use, mixing the Jem'Hadar DNA in with whatever remains of the culprit may have been there. It was too badly damaged to get any useful information from them. So he would try retracing their steps over the course of the past week. He knew they had been on DS9 the entire time. Viper had arrived there two days ago and put in for some minor maintenance before departure. If the culprit was someone on Viper, it would have given them more than enough time to carry out this plan. Get them seperate, drug them, perform the surgery, then dump them somewhere to wake up. Sneak into their guest quarters and swap the White with the tainted supply. DS9 was not like a starship, it was much harder to keep track of everyone and everything. If it wasn't someone on Viper's crew, it could have been someone visiting DS9, who left the station as soon as they had carried out the tasks. Trouble is, this side of the wormhole, he couldn't get access to the logs and records until they returned.

    His thoughts were broken by the ship screaming Red Alert! Cursing, he jumped to his feet and ran to the Bridge.

    "ENOUGH! I will not tolerate any more of your Federation lies!"

    Talaina kept her voice calm, trying to deffuse the situation. But the Jem'Hadar First on the viewscreen seemed very angry. And rightfully so. "Please, calm down. We are trying to determine what happened."
    "What happened, is some loyal soldiers went to your ship in the name of peace, and you killed them for it. I should kill your officers on my ship, and then burn your vessel from the stars. The Dominion does not tolerate such wanton abuse of it's people."

    Ttorkkin walked in at this point and took his seat at the weapons console. Great. It was a Dominion Cruiser. Alot more difficult to defeat than one of those 'bug' ships. Dathan was stood beside Talaina and spoke up.

    "First. I am the Vorta in command. You will stand down and return the Starfleet crew to this vessel. Then you will transport myself over."
    "No. You will remain there to die."
    "I am your superior. My command is almost like a command from the Gods."
    "DON'T YOU DARE COMPARE YOURSELF TO THE FOUNDERS! You were in command of the mission. You LET them die out of battle, without honour."
    "Let me speak to the Vorta in command."
    "He is dead. I killed him for incompetance. I am the First. I am in command here."

    Talaina held up a hand to silence Dathan. "Yes. Yes you are in command. This has been a terrible incident. And those responsible will be found and brought to justice. But don't let this one small act lead to another war. We've enjoyed four decades of peace between us. Let us not drag ourselves down to the level of Klingons with this bickering."

    The First seemed to be taking the words on board. It was a good job Mirat had told her how the Jem'Hadar in the Gamma Quadrant studied Klingons, and viewed them as an inferior version of themselves. Talaina continued. "In the interest of continued peace and cooperation, I invite an investigation team of yours to join us. Help us search out this criminal, and as they are your citizens that were murdered, there may be a chance of extradition. Surely, it would be more beneficial to punish the one who commited this act, than the entire galaxy. Mirat'Tiklan taught me about Jem'Hadar honour. Taught me that you are not mindless barbarians. Prove it, here. Today."

    The First thought long and hard about it. "Very well. We will dispatch an investigation team through the wormhole. They will bring back the criminal. And I am beaming your crew over now."

    "Thank you First." The comm cut off and Talaina looked at Ttorkkinn. "Please tell me you have something."
    "Yes..... and no."

    Bob and Luawra sat in the Mess Hall. She still couldn't believe it. "I still can't believe someone would be so...."
    "Malicious? Violent? Cold?"
    "Exactly. To perform that level of surgery, and to rig up the plasma torch."
    "Not to mention to synthisise the compound."
    "Takes someone with a high level of skills. Can't be too many people that could do that."
    "You assume they acted alone."

    She stared at him for a moment. "And in the name of Betazed. It goes against everything we believe in. Our culture is one that helps. Not one that harms."
    "The war changed alot of things.

    "Yes. But I had hoped we, as a people, had healed. It sickens me."
    "Some wounds will never heal."

    Bob stared intently into her eyes. Luawra started feeling uncomfortable. She reached out briefly with her mind, just flicking the fringes of Bob's mind.
    "Why do you hide your mind from me so deeply?"

    Bob just kept staring intently.
    "Why do you hide yours?"

    The two stared at each other across the table. Neither one speaking. Neither one letting their minds be sensed by the other. They couldn't tell what was being thought. They didn't know what the other was capable of. Finally, Bob stood up.

    "If you excuse me, I have work in Sickbay."

    He left, leaving Luawra alone with her thoughts.

    In the small room that passed as Quarters on a Defiant class ship, Chief Engineer Commander Claire Dotson sat on the bunk, holding a picture of a couple smiling in a sun filled field, a line of trees running across the entire background not far away. They had no care in the world, and the woman was showing a slight bump. Claire smiled as she ran a thumb over the woman's face, tracing the outline of where Claire herself was sitting in the photo. She had never known their family home on Betazed. Though they were a human family, the stories from her Aunt had said they were welcomed to that world as if they were Betazoid. Claire was their first child, and was the first of many planned. Until that fateful day, when the Dominion ravaged Eden. That fateful day when everyone was massacred. That fateful day she was born minutes after her mother died. A tear splashed on the picture, quickly wiped away. That older Andorian bloke she had met had indeed proven useful. His formula was just as effective as he said it would be.

    "I got them Mum. I got them Dad. I'll get every Dominion bastard I see. For you. For everyone on Betazed. Always remember."

      Current date/time is Wed Jun 20, 2018 8:12 am