Commander Lapel and Lt. Mirek moved to the aft section of engineering on board a Dominion War vessel. They had infiltrated the ship twenty minutes for on a routine reconnaissance gathering mission. Captain Gorman and Lt. Commander Tarbis watched and stood poised with their phaser riffles ready. The intensity was growing. Every moment they stayed on the ship was a moment that they came closer to death.
Commander Lapel motioned to Mirek to begin downloading from the Dominion computer systems. He stood over the console with a tricorder. Several Jem'HaDar moved through out engineering tending to their business unaware of the visitors they had.
Lieutenant Allenby, who was on board the Shadow Horseman, interfaced with the tricorder that Mirek was holding. She began to download the information they needed. When the transfer was complete she sent a message back to the tricorder. It simply said, "Complete."
Mirek slowly closed his tricorder. He turned to Lapel and nodded his head signaling that the mission was complete. Lapel and Mirek stepped down from the cat walk and headed towards the door. Gorman and Tarbis followed them out with their backs turned ready to fire.
They moved down the hall way heading back to the ship. Suddenly, the lights went dim. The ship had gone to Red Alert.
"Lets get back to the ship on the double. He may have been discovered." Gorman said.
Lieutenant Allenby came back on his communicator. "Sir, I can't lock onto you in your position. You have to get out of that section."
"Allenby. Can you tell what's going on?" Gorman said.
"No sir.....looks.....Jem'HaDar.....towards you." Allenby explained.
"Allenby, you're breaking up."
"Can't.....a fix....Signal...." The team was motionless as all they heard was static.
"Lets move." Gorman shouted.
They started to run. Gorman came around the corner first. In the back of the hallway two Jem'HaDar soldiers were moving towards them fast. They stopped and turned to enter a door. The doors opened and the Jem'HaDar fired several wide beam shots into the room.
"They're on to us." Gorman said.
The team moved back down the hall way that they had just come from. Two shots came over their head and hit the bulkhead above. Mirek and Lapel turned to fire when they noticed that the Jem'HaDar were not firing at them. They were just shooting wide beam burst down the hall way to flush out anyone who might be down there.
Another burst came. This time it was a small beam. It hit Lapel directly in his left forearm damaging the LCARS pad he was wearing. His body shifted in and out cloak before he was revealed to the Jem'HaDar. Lapel stared into the Jem'HaDar eyes. They rose their riffles and fired. Lapel tensed, waiting for the shot to make contact with his chest, but it never came.
"No." Mirek shouted as he dove in-between Lapel and the phaser blast. There was a small flash of light as Mirek was vaporized. The transporter beam was all that saved the rest of the team.
Captain's Log supplemental:
During a routine reconnaissance mission on board a Dominion vessel Lieutenant Michael Mirek was killed by a Jem'HaDar soldier. I would like the record to show that He gave his life to save another. He was very brave in his actions. Although I only knew him for a few weeks, I am more than positive that he would have made Captain someday. It's times like this when I have a heavy heart. I tend to blame myself but we all know there was nothing that could have been done to prevent his death. He is the third person I have lost under my command. It never gets any easier. I can only hope that this will be the last message like this that I must record. We are putting back into Space Dock on Earth to file a formal report, and to do something I hate even worse than reports. I must visit his parents and give them the news.
Gorman pulled off his sleeveless gray uniform. He stood there in his red undershirt and dark blue pants.
"Ice Tea." He said to the replicator.
He paced in his office sipping on the tea. His door chimed.
Commander Lapel entered his office.
"Sir." He said. "May I talk with you a minute."
"Of course Doran." Gorman took his seat behind his desk. "What can I do for you?"
"Well" He stepped forward and took a seat. "I was wandering if it would be ok if I was the one who went to visit Mirek's parents."
"Oh" Gorman said with a little surprise in his voice. "May I ask why?"
"Well sir, He saved my life. I owe him that much."
"But you know you can't tell his parents anything about his death."
"I realize that sir. But at least I would know the truth." He finished his sentence and didn't know what else to say.
Gorman nodded. "Very well then." He reluctantly agreed. "I'll see to the arrangements when we get back to Earth, and besides that's not exactly something I enjoy doing."
"You mean since your wife died." Lapel said without thinking. He now felt stupid. "I'm sorry sir I didn't mean...."
"No it's ok. You are of course right." He stood and started to pace again. "Ever since I had to face my father in law," He paused. "Well, that's just not something I want to do again. To anyone."
Lapel stood realizing he out wore his welcome. "Thank you sir."
"Dismissed." Gorman ordered.
Michael Mirek stood up and looked around. He wasn't sure where he was but the realization came back to him all too quickly.
"I want to know how Starfleet was able to place crew men on board this ship."
Mirek turned to see that there was a male Vorta addressing him. He tried to speak but wasn't sure what to say.
"I don't know sir." Came the voice of a Jem'HaDar soldier. Mirek looked at the soldier in confusion.
"Well that's too bad now isn't it."
The Vorta nodded to the Jem'HaDar soldier standing next to him. The soldier lifted his riffle and fired a shot. Mirek flinched up and yelled as the phaser blast headed for him. The shot passed right through him and hit the Jem'HaDar that the Vorta was addressing. Mirek reached for his stomach and then his chest. He was breathing so fast he wasn't even sure if he was breathing.
"Now I want answers and I want them now." The Vorta said to the other Jem'HaDar on the bridge.
Mirek wasn't even sure how he got onto the bridge. All he knew for sure is that somehow the poleron blast must have interacted with the phase distribution of the personal cloak, and knocked him out of phase.
"Sir, I believe that I may be able to answer your question." A Soldier said from another console.
The Vorta walked over to the Jem'HaDars station. Mirek followed behind trying to gain his composure.
"Right after we killed one the humans I detected transporter beams. I modified the computer system to follow the pattern of the beam. They transported to a ship that was attached to our hull."
"Why did you not report this before?" The Vorta asked.
"Forgive me sir, but the computer has just now finished analyzing the data."
The Vorta stood back a minute.
"So Starfleet has a new ship that we don't know about." He stepped back to the center of the bridge.
"Our operatives in Starfleet have said nothing of this. Those Starfleet crew members could have accessed our computer core."
Mirek could only sit and hold his breath.
"Unlikely sir." A Jem'HaDar said.
"Nevertheless, it is possible." He paused. "We have to get our hands on that ship. We can't allow them to return with the information they have."
A female Vorta that was seated on the other side of the bridge stood. "Sir, I believe I know how to find out where that ship was going."
"Oh." He said.
She turned to face the view screen. "Contact Gul Dukat." She ordered.
Mirek knew the team was in danger.
"Yes sir I understand." Gorman said to the small computer screen that sat on his desk.
He turned off the computer and moved from behind his desk. He exited his office and entered the bridge.
"Lieutenant Allenby, Set course 842 mark 613." Gorman said.
"There's been a change in our orders sir?" Lapel asked inquisitively.
"Yes there has."
"Course laid in sir." Allenby said.
"Warp seven, engage."
The ship went into warp.
"What about Mireks parents sir?" Lapel asked.
"They will have to wait. A small outpost on a Federation planet Eljos IX was attacked by a Jem'HaDar patrol. Starfleet has dispatched us to lay cover fire until a Starship can arrive."
"Cover Fire?" Tarbis said. Gorman cut him off before he could continue.
"We are the only ship in the area that can get there fast enough. Chances are the Jem'HaDar will be long gone by the time we get there anyway."
"Oh, That's too bad sir. I was kinda hoping to see what this ship can do in battle."
Gorman smiled. "As was I Commander, but perhaps we'll still get that chance."
"Sir" A Jem'HaDar soldier said to the Vorta. "We are receiving a transmission" He paused. "The name of the ship is the USS Shadow Horseman, it's a newly commissioned Prevaricate vessel ship."
The Vorta stepped forward. "Did our operatives take care of everything?"
"Yes sir. The ship received new orders just a few minutes ago and should be on its way here." Mirek stood in the back of ship terrified.
"Good. Position us over the planets polar ice cap. The magnetic field should obscure us from their sensors. Then when the timing is right, we'll take the ship."
"Sir." Another soldier said. "It may be nothing, but I have been detecting a build up verteron particles on the bridge."
"What?" The Vorta said. "What could be causing it."
"I'm not sure sir, but we will need to purify the gas or it will become dangerous."
Mirek looked around obviously realizing that he was the cause of the radiation. He knew that if was revealed we would be killed instantly. He took off his communicator and opened the top.
"Very well. Start venting the bridge with Poleronic gas."
"Aye sir." The Jem'HaDar said.
Mirek worked fast. He attached his communicator to the field axis controller on his LCARS pad. He reconfigured his pad to seclude Poleronic radiation from his verteron matrix. He stood there in fear as the bridge was filling with an invisible gas.
"Sir, I'm picking up a ship on sensors, it's the Shadow Horseman. They will be in orbit of the planet in five minutes.
"Very well." The Vorta said. "Arm weapons and prepare the tractor beam."
"Sir, all verteron particles have been vented from the bridge."
Mirek was able to breathe again in relief. He watched as the Jem'HaDar moved through the bridge readying themselves to board the Horseman. Everything was happening so fast. He barely had time to think. He pulled his phaser from behind his uniform and headed towards engineering.
Mirek entered through the wall and glanced around engineering. He was amazed by the craftsman ship used in creating the ship. He looked around and found a console with a flap top. He stepped forward and laid his phaser riffle on the console with the front pointing towards the warp core. He opened a latch on the side of the phaser and pushed a few buttons. He closed the hatch, the phaser began to hum loudly. He ran through the wall as fast as he could.
"Sir." Allenby said. "Approaching the planet."
"Go to impulse." Gorman ordered. "Mr. Tarbis scan the planets surface."
"Aye sir." Tarbis said.
Tarbis ran his hands across his console, and then began to shake his head. "Sir, this is strange." He said. "I'm not detecting any damage to the planets surface. All of the colonies are intact."
"What, that doesn't make any since." Gorman said.
"Wait sir." Allenby said. "I'm detecting something else. Sensors are picking up what appears to be a massive verteron worm hole on a stationary orbit above the planets north magnetic pole."
Lapel stood. "That's impossible sir. Nothing natural can create a verteron worm hole."
"Unless it isn't natural sir." Tarbis said somewhat reluctantly.
"A SHIP!" Gorman said.
Lapel looked at Gorman in shock "We've been set up."
Gorman moved back and took his seat. "Lt. Allenby engage cloaking device. Set course to bring us along side the anomaly."
"Aye sir." Allenby said.
On board the Dominion Vessel the ship had gone to red alert. Lights flashed as Jem'HaDar hurried to find the problem.
"Well, I'm not sure sir. As far as I can tell there was a large build up of verteon particles through out the entire ship. " A Soldier said.
"Can you vent the ship with Poleronic gas." The Vorta asked.
"Yes sir, but the verteron particles have imbedded themselves into our hull. There is no way to get rid of all the particles."
The Vorta turned to face the view screen. "Has the Shadow Horseman detected us?"
"Unknown sir, the ship cloaked just a few minutes ago."
The Vorta stood blindly going over his thought. "Vent the ship with Poleron particles." He ordered.
Mirek sat in the corner of a long empty corridor. He knew what would come next. The ship would be vented with the Poleronic gas. There was no way his pad could vent out that much radiation. He would be discovered. At least he had saved the Horseman, he thought. He figured if he worked quickly enough he might be able to contact his ship. He sat and waited.
"A Dominion vessel?" Gorman said. "Bring us along side her."
The Shadow Horseman moved along side the Dominion vessel.
"Are their shields up?" Lapel asked.
"No sir." Tarbis said. "But weapons systems are powered."
"They were just sitting here waiting to ambush us sir." Lapel said.
"If we hadn't detected the verteron particles we'd be dead by now." Gorman added.
"Sir." Allenby interrupted. "Chances are they scanned the ship. We can't allow them them to get back to Cardassia with that information."
"Why wouldn't they have just sent a signal?" Lapel asked.
"The planets magnetic pole is preventing any long range transmission from being sent away from the planet." Tarbis said as he ran his fingers across his controls.
Groman nodded. "Which means unless they contacted another ship in this Solar System they still have the information they scanned."
"And we would have picked up the transmission sir." Tarbis said.
Allenby seemed to be on alert. "The Dominion vessel is flooding the ship with Poleronic gas. They are trying to reverse the effect of the Verteron particles."
Gorman walked back to his chair and sat down. He straightened his uniform. "Bring the phaser banks on line and arm all torpedo bays. We'll take her out before she knows what hit her."
"Aye sir, weapons armed." Tarbis said.
Lapel stared at the ship. "Target engineering and fir..."
Allenby flew her hands across her console and couldn't believe her eyes. "Sir I'm picking up a transmission from the ship."
"What?!" Gorman shouted. "Did they detect us?"
"No sir, it's not coming from the ship itself, it's coming from the aft section of engineering. The transmission has been coded on a Federation frequency."
"Lets hear it." Gorman ordered.
"It's seems to Morse code sir. Text only" Allenby said. "The...Only....Easy...Day...Was....Yesterday."
Lapel jumped to his feet. "It's Mirek!" He shouted.
"I don't believe it." Gorman said in disbelief. He stood.
Tarbis spoke ever so calmly. "Sir, the Dominion would more than likely detect his transmission."
"Scan the ship, lock onto to the source of the signal." Lapel ordered.
"No." Gorman interrupted. "If we scan the ship we will give away our position. Lt. Allenby sit us down in the aft section of the Dominion vessel."
Mirek was able to engage his cloak before the Jem'HaDar had a chance to come and find him. He knew that they must have detected him on board the ship. He had entered engineering and stood there knowing that his crew mates would come for him if they got the message. Either way he would not allow the ship to return to Cardassian space. He pulled a small explosive from inside one of his pockets that aligned his vest. He attached the device to the warp core and it immediately cloaked. He then activated and moved out of engineering to look for his ship mates.
Gorman, Tarbis, and Lapel jumped down from the hole that was cut into the ship. They were cloaked and ready for battle. They moved through the ship avoiding Jem'HaDar patrols as they went and headed towards engineering.
"I'm downloading the last known coordinates of the transmission to your tricorder." Allenby said over the communicator.
Gorman looked ahead to the end of the hallway where it intersected with another creating a "T" shape. He heard what appeared to be phaser fire and then two large grunts followed by the sound of someone hitting the floor.
They ran around the corner. On the floor was two dead Jem'HaDar soldiers, standing over then was Mirek. In his hand he held a Type II phaser.
"Mirek!" Lapel said as he ran towards him.
"Oh, hey guys how's it going." Mirek said sarcastically.
Gorman grinned. "Lets get to engineering, we have to destroy this ship."
"Already taken care of sir." Mirek said with a smile.
They heard voices "The phaser fire came from down this corridor."
"Um sir." Mirek said. "I only set the timer for a five minute delay."
"Then by all means, lets get back to the ship." He said.
The ship shook a little has the Dominion vessel exploded. They never even knew what hit them. They detected the transporter patterns and tried to lock onto the ship with a tractor beam. But the Horseman had gone to warp a few seconds before the ship exploded.
Gorman sat in his chair on the bridge as Mirek finished telling the tale of what really happened to him. Of course he would have to file a formal report for Gormans review but Gorman let him continue nonetheless.
"We all thought you were dead." Allenby said.
"Hey man, you think I'm going to let you guys off that easy." Mirek said with a smile.
Lapel stood. He had been quiet since they left the planet. He walked towards Mirek and extended his hand.
Mirek smiled and then accepted the offer.
"I..I don't have the words." Lapel said.
"It's nothing you wouldn't have done yourself sir." Mirek said with a grin.
"Don't be to sure about that son." Lapel countered.
Mirek frowned slightly. Lapel returned to his seat smiling to himself. He knew that would get to him. He glanced at Gorman who was also smiling but tried his hardest not to show it. Mirek took his seat.
Tarbis walked to the Captain.
"Sir." He said. "We still have a question that needs answering."
Lapel added, "We need to find out who set us up sir."
Gorman sat up straight in his chair. "Lt. Allenby set a course for Earth, Maximum warp."
There are always two sides to every story - this is what happens when both sides are brought together from opposite sides of the most devastating battle in Federation history.
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