Cold Realisation – The task before you
by HoD Ro' Matlh & Lieutenant JG Linx Moonshadow & Sogh Germite Ephilom

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Title   The task before you
Mission   Cold Realisation
Author(s)   HoD Ro' Matlh & Lieutenant JG Linx Moonshadow & Sogh Germite Ephilom
Posted   Fri Aug 02, 2013 @ 2:00am
Location   Prometheus Station, Low Orbit over Iapetus Prime
Prometheus station hung in low orbit over the Icy rock of Iapetus Prime. Although the Station and the colony below were technically Federation, they were not Starfleet. It was for this reason that many of the cultures in the area had agreed to come together and use it as a trade station and centre for negotiations. In a matter of months it had become pivotal in local politics.

Admiral Vloc Cann was in charge of negotiations for the Federation in the Triangle Council. Although a Starfleet officer, he was seen as impartial enough to be an acceptable member, although not chairman. That honour fell to the Klingon General HI', who also represented the Klingon Empire in the Council.

This opportunity for exchange had great benefits, primarily establishing a grounds for interchange between the races in ways that other red tape might hold up.

Thus it was that General HI' burst into Vloc's office without making any form of appointment and with the rather flustered Cmdr Elizabeth Smith trailing behind unable to stop him.

"YOU!" HI' began without preamble, "Explain yourself. I have just heard that you are intending to put a Starfleet officer on one of our ships to spy on them."

"I hardly believe spying is..." Elizibeth began trying to diffuse the situation. Vloc understood Klingon better than she so held up his hand to stop her.

"It is all right, Commander. I will handle this. Please, General, pull up a seat next to the young Lieutenant here and sit down."

"I prefer to stand," HI' growled eyeing the strange feline officer in red uniform.

"Then by all means pull up some floor," Vloc said. The statement was so a-logical that it threw HI' for a moment, as Vloc had intended.

"You are partly right in your understanding. I do intend to place a Starfleet operative on one of your Klingon vessels; to be specific the IKC FHew. However, they are not a member of Starfleet intelligence, so not what you would call 'a spy'. They are a member of the Diplomatic Core."

HI' roared, "A diplomat? On a B'rel? Fat chance!"

Vloc nodded, "I agree it is... unusual. The Fhew is working under the auspices of Ulysses Fleet, and as such is representing the Federation as well as the Empire. SO the Operatives role will be three fold. Firstly, she is there as an observer, to safe guard you."

"Me?" HI' nearly rose form his chair.

"Your people; from false allegations of impropriety. In the last day the FHew opened fire on an unknown species on Federation soil, was seen shortly after at the sight of an attack on a Federation trade ship, and has since been MIA. While I am sure that there is a reasonable explanation for HoD Ro's actions, I am sure your defense, should a hearing be initiated, would be strengthened by the presence of an independent witness who can vouchsafe for you."

The General was too gobsmacked at the open threat made to respond, so Vloc pressed on, "Secondly, they are to care for the Federation interests on the ship, which means both how we are represented, and how our citizens are treated. You currently have three Federation citizens, two human females and a Bajoran male, on your ship. While I am sure the greatest care is being provided for them, there is undoubtedly things that a Federation person may desire that a Klingon ship would, through no fault of its own, not think to supply... such as running water."

"We have no need of running..." HI' began, then realized he had walked into Vloc's trap.

"Precisely," Vloc gave a slight nod. "By the same token, you will agree, I am sure, that Klingon First Contact Procedures are not in line with Starfleet's Goals and Objectives. Nor would it be fair to expect your crews to learn them. Our representative will provide the face for negotiations on behalf of the Federation to spare your crew that difficulty."

"That's two roles," HI' watched Vloc like a hawk, "What is the third?"

"A spy," said Vloc simply.

General HI' was again taken off guard by the directness of Vloc.

"When I say spy, she will not be investigating any of the crew, she will simply sit and wait, listening in to those conversation carried on around her and reporting any key issues back to Starfleet. She will remain in plain sight and all the crew will be aware of that part of her role."

HI' was confused, "Then what makes you think any of the crew will talk openly in front of this person."

Vloc's face was impassive, "Because you just have."

He indicated to the woman sitting next to the Klingon, "Lieutenant Moonshadow, let me introduce General GharwI' HI'."

"Greetings, General." Linx had been sitting quietly, and taking everything in. She had met a few dogs and gorillas that acted similarly, but she had to meet a Klingon face to face. She was learning, and learning quickly. She smiled as she realized that this might just be the place where she would finally fit in.

"Her?" HI' exploded. "You are sending HER? She will get eaten alive by the crew."

Vloc was very serious, "That would be unfortunate. If you cannot assure me of her safety, I regret I must withdraw all Federation support of the FHew's operations in Federation space."

HI's eyes narrowed, "So if she dies, you claim political incident. And if I refuse you accuse us of misconduct."

Vloc sighed, "Instead of seeing her as a liability, see her as an asset. For all my experience, I still rely heavily on the Commander here to support my role on the Council."

"General, Lt Moonshadow comes highly recommended."

Vloc gestured to Linx, "And as for martial prowess, I believe Lt Linx has an impressive record."

Linx stood up, and calmly swaggered her way until she stood in his face. With the gorillas she knew all she had to do was beat them a little, and they would trust her, but she was afraid this Klingon might take it as flirting... So she looked him in the eye, and spoke.

"I have had training in all forms of fighting, and have beaten people twice your size with my bare hands. Of course, you will never know about that, and you do not need to. Just know that your men do not need to work so hard to protect me. Who knows, I might end up protecting them more often."

Among other races it might have been seen as arrogance or brash bravado, but to a Klingon this was exactly the attitude Linx would need to survive on a B'rel. He simply nodded.

"All right then, Vloc. I will allow it. On the condition the Federation make allowances for Klingons to take back repuS Station."

Vloc's eyes narrowed, "The Raeyan Transit Corridor? One officer for an entire station?"

HI' smiled, "Admiral, the federation are setting up in the Xartos system. It would be easy for the Romulans, or even the Empire to accuse you of espionage or some othe missconduct. Would it not be better to have independant observers nearby to vouch for you?"

Vloc's face did not smile but his eyes flashed in what passed, among vulcans, for amusement, "Then we are agreed. For the mutual benefit of all. Now all we need to do is arrange for the transportation of the Lieutenant to the FHew. If you would be kind enough to furnish us with her location or transponder signal..."

HI' looked uncomfortable, "We don't know."

"Excuse me?" Vloc raised the eyebrow.

HI' sighed, "After leaving this system HoD Ro' has turned of his transponder. He is not supposed to do that even when running silent. It... is possible he was destroyed pursuing the creatures from the surface."

Vloc steepled his fingers, "But you do not believe so, or you would not have argued so vehemenantly."

"Ro' has survived a direct assault on a Borg cube. I doubt anything will kill him."

Vloc turned to Elizabeth and Linx, "So... how do we proceed?"

"How about we start with what I should expect. While we do that, we'll see about how to get me aboard."

Elizabeth looked at Linx, "I would expect that you would have already researched the past Starfleet postings on Klingon vessels. As far as what to expect, the F'Hew seems to be a rather odd assortment of crew, for a Klingon vessel."

There was a hesitant knock at the door and an apologetic looking gentleman with grey skin peered through. Parodn me for the interuption, ladies and gentlemen, but I understand you are seeking transport to the FHew?"

Linx nodded quietly. Most of the time she was always quiet, quiet and observing.

"Well, it seems we, The Corporation, may have information on her wherabouts."

"How!" HI' demanded.

"I am not at liberty to discuss that at present but... I hope to in short order. By the way, Commander I believe teh correct pronunciation is without the glotteral stop, and the H sounds like your Hard K. So instead of 'phew' it is pronounced F..."

"Thank you, Mr J." Vloc cut in quickly before a diplomatic incident was inadvertantly caused.
"I thought you and the Corpoeration affiliates were abandoning the station?"

"Indeed," the greyskinned J nodded, "And we are willing to take the young Lt Moonshadow with us and deliver her to the FHew."

"It seems," HI' growled, "that for all our protestations about spying, the Corporation already has better intel than either of us. I have no issue with the transport."

Vloc considered, "Elizabeth. Do you see any reason to refuse the offer?"

Elizabeth shook her head. "While the Corporation is not our ally, at least not directly, they have not shown any duplicity. I am curious, however, as to what the price of this assistance will be?"

J spread his hands in mock injury, "I am disappointed in your suspicion, Commander. Let me say that we all have reason to wish to find the FHew quickly, and neither of us would be likely to do so without the presence of the other."

Vloc nodded, "I see. Then I will look forward to the Lieutenant's first report. Lt Moonshadow, you will report to the Corporate transport at your earliest convenience. Dismissed."