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JP: Commodore Jalana Rajel & Lt. Commander Toryn Raga - Looming Threats

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(( First Officer’s Office, Deck 3 Primary Hull, USS Ronin, In Orbit of Ferenginar ))


The last of the usual PADDwork had been finally completed and Toryn stiffly rose from the couch in his office where he had been reclined, or seated for the last hour and a half. They were on leave and he knew most of the crew was already enjoying their time or not on the ever wet Ferengi homeworld. He himself wasn’t overly fond of swamps and bogs, but he’d also never been to Ferenginar before. It was something he looked forward to, especially when he could find time to get out to the Gothis mountains at some point to scale the tallest peak. A soft hoot from across the room signaled the agreement of his Al-Leyan Seiuri, Sylara, from her platinum perch behind his desk.


Raga: Al-Leyan Spiced tea, Sez Toural blend. Hot. ::he smirked at his owl:: And Sylara Snacks number five. 


The replication whirred in response and a moment later he had a fresh libation as well as a small plate of strips of raw targ meat. And one final report he wanted to review before allowing himself to truly start his shore leave. 


Toryn set the bowl on his desk and held up a strip of meat in the air which was scooped up a moment later as he felt weight on his right shoulder. Pleased screeches murmured in his ear and he chuckled a little to himself. 


He tapped at the LCARs on the computer in his desk and pulled up all of the Security and Starfleet Intelligence reports for the Alpha Isles. Since the formation of the fanatical or fringe elements of both the Tholian Assembly and the Sheliak Corporate into one Alliance the Alpha Isles had been increasingly more chaotic. The number of distress signals that they’d detected in the region both in and out of Federation territory had steadily increased since their evacuation of the Grus Betans. 


The Al-Leyan studied the reports and in the essence of being thorough he expanded his search of Starfleet vessels in the region and noticed that aside from the Arrow and Ronin, there was one other starship that operated fairly close to Tholian space. A region known as the Marchlands. He took a sip of his tea while he read up on the region. The USS Constitution-B needed no research or introduction. Years of FNS reports from the legendary vessel briefly flitted in the forefront of his thoughts before he sat back, mug in hand. His face was illuminated by the light from the computer as his office was considerably darker than the rest of the ship. It had been a long day and the nocturnal officer was grateful for the respite for his eyes. 


Raga: Computer. Open a long distance hail to Commodore Jalana Rajel on the USS Constitution-B. 


The computer chirped an acknowledgement and the screen shifted from the rotating logo of the USS Ronin, to that of the Starfleet insignia. Toryn glanced down and realized he looked a little dishevelled, his uniform jacket unzipped and wrinkled. He consciously smoothed the creases. He didn’t know the Commodore and as a flag officer he was certain she knew more than him, yet the years of Security and Tactical duty instilled the habit of being thorough. 


Nothing seemed to be happening. Had he actually placed the call? Just when one might get the impression of the CO ignoring the call, the screen finally changed displaying the face of the red haired Trill. Well in that moment just the red hair. A hand reached up, wiping the red away. She stood somewhere in a breeze that had just come up when she had tried to take the call. 


Rajel: =/\= Just one… moment. =/\= ::She called out and then moved a few more steps. If Toryn took a good look, he would see round wooden plated buildings in the backgrounds amidst sickly looking crops, something that looked like a tall thin walking tree walking in the background in a pen and a Trill man being left behind as Jalana walked off. Finally Jalana came back into view, looking at the screen, a smile on her lips. =/\= Hello. And hello to your friend. =/\= 


The Al-Leyan sat up straighter and only then remembered he had a large owl on his right shoulder as the screen changed and he got his first sort of in person look at the fiery haired flag officer. He stared at the screen with his glowing cerulean eyes. 


Raga: =/\= Cool winds, Commodore Rajel. ::He smiled:: I’m Lieutenant Commander Toryn Raga, First Officer on board the USS Ronin. Apologies if I am disturbing your evening. =/\=


Rajel: =/\= Hardly, we are in the middle of an away mission. I just needed to find a more quiet place. Pleasure meeting you, Toryn, please call me Jalana. =/\=


A brow raised in a vulcanoid manner at her comment. He had little interactions with most flag officers, even since becoming XO on the Ronin but this was the first time any of them insisted on being referred to by their first names for someone they weren’t familiar with. 


Raga: =/\= Oh, of course, Jalana. =/\=


Sylara gave a soft hoot in greeting as well, her head bobbed up and down several times pleasantly. 


Rajel: =/\= Much better. And who is your feathered friend? =/\=


Raga: =/\= Oh, this is Sylara. She’s an Al-Leyan Seiuri and my childhood companion. =/\=


Rajel: ::grinning:: =/\= Nice to meet you Sylara. You are beautiful!=/\= ::She turned her attention back to Toryn. Though I assume you are not calling all the Flag Officers in the Fleet to introduce your owl. Unless you are, in that case I might call my First Officer so you can continue with him.=/\=


There was a cheeky little grin on her lips, and a spark in her eyes that indicated her good humor. 


Toryn noted the grin and it reminded him of Karrod when he made one of his many amusing comments. 


Raga: =/\= Were that the only reason I would be grateful, sadly I’m calling for something of importance.  =/\=


Rajel: =/\= Alright then. What can I do for you, Toryn? =/\=


She looked behind her and leaned against a wooden fence before looking back to the young man. Curious why the First Officer of the Ronin would be calling her. 


The Al-Leyan’s brow wrinkled a bit and he tugged at his jacket briefly before explaining. 


Raga: =/\= Well, we’re dealing with a bit of a problem in the Alpha Isles, us and the Arrow. And while doing some research I noted that your ship is close to Tholian space. Have you heard of the Lattice Alliance? =/\=


Toryn knew that both Starfleet Security and Intelligence had put out alerts on the newly formed organisation of two of the most dangerous and xenophobic species in the region, but that didn’t mean that everyone was aware of it, given they only made themselves known a couple of months ago. 


There may be a lot that a CO had to filter out. Some things that were more important than others to immediately pay attention to. It was easy to consider just focusing on one's own ship but space was a potentially dangerous place and protecting one’s ship meant knowing what was out there. So one part of her work was to keep an eye on the news, Security updates and the like from across the fleet and even more from their area of operation. The Lattice Alliance would be one of these things. But there was not much information out there yet, but enough to be concerned.


Rajel: =/\= The alliance between Tholians and Sheliak. ::She said quietly with a nod.:: I believe I read about them in the News. ::She paused.:: Why do you ask? =/\=


Raga: =/\= They made a declaration of war on the Federation and all of the Alpha Isles a few months ago when they sent out a message on all channels.'The Lattice Alliance claims this space.  Opposition will burn away.' =/\=


The Trill sank back against the fence. The Tholians were powerful, dangerous. Starfleet had several run-ins with them and were relieved that this power had been quiet for a while. And as their neighbours, the expansionist and aggressive nature of the Tholians could mean that planets would burn. It did not surprise her that they had formed an alliance with the Sheliak that were equally xenophobic and convinced every other species was inferior. Well apparently unless the other species was Tholian. The raised activity had been concerning but this… this was bad. 


Rajel: =/\= Shit. ::She hissed, her hand running into her neck as another breeze blew her hair into her face.:: Pardon the language. That means that we’re right in their way over here as well. =/\=


Toryn nodded his head somberly, though he hid it well enough there was an obvious concern and remorse behind his glowing eyes. The kind a Starfleet officer who’d failed even partially at a mission would have. 


Raga: =/\= Weeks after we were forced to withdraw from our engagement with them, when they made that proclamation, we responded to a distress call. Hundred meter tall wildfires ravaging a planet. We discovered the Alliance was responsible. ::He rubbed at the brim of his nose:: They condemned an entire populated colony to burn in order to terraform it for the Tholians. We got out everyone we could, but the world’s a husk now. =/\=


The Trill looked into the distance watching inhabitants talk to Starfleet officers, as they did their work while she stood aside talking and receiving these news. It was so peaceful here. If it wasn’t for the run in with Tagus, and even that seemed to be a bit calmer now. Her eyes moved to him briefly. Would they come here too? A deep breath later she nodded. 


Rajel: =/\= Yes, I remember reading about it… Grus Beta Three. A whole planet…  =/\=


She mourned for the ones that the Ronin could not save, the flora and fauna, the life on this once blooming planet that now was Ashes.


Raga: =/\= While the Lattice Alliance seems to be made from splinter groups from both the Sheliak and the Tholians, and given how close your ship is to Tholian space I wanted to apprise you of what we’re facing here in case things might spill out into neighbouring areas. ::He shrugged:: So far it seems their only interest is the Alpha Isles, but the possibility of the Tholian Assembly seeking to take advantage of this in some way isn’t zero. =/\=


Jalana turned her gaze and attention back on the screen in her hand and nodded slightly. 


Rajel: =/\= If they declared war on the Federation as you said there is no reason to limit it to one area. They could declare any area near the border as their own any moment. =/\=


Raga: =/\= Possibly, but the Alliance seems to be fringe elements from both the Tholian Assembly and the Sheliak Corporate. We haven’t yet found anything to suggest the Alliance is condoned by the entirety of both organisations…. but they could still move on just because of the opportunity it presents. =/\=


Rajel: =/\= I appreciate that you called me to let me know. Being so close to the border could have easily resulted in a surprise attack while we are asleep. Knowing that they might come, gives us a chance to prepare. =/\=


Toryn gave a slight nod and a reassuring smile, though he tapped at his desk out of concern or perhaps irritation with the looming threat. . 


Raga: =/\= We could still be ambushed regardless, I’ve been there myself.  =/\=


Rajel: =/\= You know as well as I do that there is nothing that no matter how much you prepare it is never enough. But the enemy you know is better than the one you don’t. =/\=


He smiled warmly and again gave the Trill a nod. He could see the rural landscape behind her and the occasional cry of some sort of cattle. 


Raga: =/\= I couldn’t agree more.  =/\= 


Rajel: =/\= If you hear anything else, please let me know. Likewise if anything should happen on this side of the Embassy I will send word. ::She paused:: The weapon they used on Grus Beta Three, do you know anything about that? Something we can work with?  =/\= 


His brow raised in a vulcanoid manner and his nictitating membranes blinked as he nodded. 


Raga: =/\= Potentially. The waves were a classified form of radiation discovered by one of Commander Niac’s former hosts. We don’t know how the Alliance got a hold of it as Sencha died along with all of her research. It’s capable of interfering with subspace transmissions and sensor readings for an excessive number of light years.  =/\= 


Rajel: =/\= Things never remain hidden, even if we think there is no reason for them to come out. =/\=


Even if it was just someone snooping and then talking to the wrong people. Most of the time they wouldn’t know how information got out in the first place. 


The Al-Leyan clearly had more to add though he idly rubbed the chest plumage of the owl perched on his shoulder out of pure reflex. 


Raga: =/\= The radiation is dangerous beyond anything we’ve seen. We think it was responsible for causing at least one temporal anomaly in the system where a former base of theirs was located. We successfully destroyed it. But the Alliance has what we’re classifying as a Dreadnaught. I’d have to check the specifics but I believe it would outsize a D’Deridex. And the one the Ronin encountered had a weaponized version of the Sencha Waves. =/\= 


Toryn had not been present during the battle as his away team were enacting a rescue of a civilian freighter at the time. He’d read the after action reports though. 


Raga: =/\= The weapon lets them focus the waves on individual targets. Those  waves nearly ripped the Ronin’s hull apart. I wasn’t present at the time as I was with a team rescuing a civilian vessel the Tholians had attacked in the area. But we utilised a series of short warp jumps and some inventive explosives to get out of the confrontation before that beast ripped the Ronin in twaid. If you encounter any vessel deploying one such weapon, reinforce your structural integrity fields. It’ll buy you time. =/\=


Jalana nodded slightly, listening to Toryn to make a mental note on that. Buying time would literally be the difference between survival and destruction if it came to powers like the Tholians and the Sheliak. 


Rajel: =/\= That’s good advice. I’ll advise our Tactical and HCO department of that. =/\=


Toryn smiled at the Commodore and leaned in a little. 


Raga: =/\= I’ll have everything we know about the Sencha Waves sent to the Constitution via secured comms or courier. You have a Starfleet Intelligence detachment on board your ship, do you not? =/\= 


Rajel: =/\= Yes we do. I’ll make sure they’ll get the data to dig through. Could you also include some details about these inventive explosives? They might inspire my Engineers. =/\=


Again he nodded and the Al-Leyan offered the Trill a warm smile. 


Raga: =/\= Of course, Com…Jalana. Karrod has been trying to impress upon Starfleet Command the urgent threat the Alliance poses in the region but from what he’s mentioned, they seem more concerned with Frontier Day planning. Which is why I wanted to reach out to you as the next closest ship that could be at risk. I don’t know if they’d dare to go after Starbase One Oh Four or not, but as you said. It’s best to be prepared. =/\= 


Jalana groaned slightly, leaning her head back. She looked up to the clear sky for a deep breath before straightening up again to look at Toryn.


Rajel: =/\= Of course they are busier with something that has to do with making them look good rather than something far away from Sol. And when it hits there will be the big question of why we didn’t warn them. =/\=


Again his brow raised slightly at her tone while he took a sip from his steaming mug. 


Raga: =/\= Sounds like that’s spoken from a place of experience?  =/\= 


He could say that again. She had been part of this machine for long enough to recognize repeat offenders and patterns. And quite possible, Apria and her distaste of Starfleet reared her little head in a ‘told you so’ manner. 


Rajel: =/\= Sorry it’s just… nevermind. We’ll just have to look out for it ourselves, don’t we? I appreciate that you reached out. If they don’t come to 104, they might still try with bordering planets like Cait, and those are in our region. Luckily as a Commodore I can tell some scout ships to go have a look. =/\= 


Raga: =/\= Certainly, with luck the Tholians will behave but it’s better to be safe than sorry as the Humans say.  =/\= 


Rajel: =/\= Of course. I’ll make sure to let you know if they find anything. I better get back to work now or my crew will think they have to solve this mystery themselves. =/\= 


He offered her a grateful smile and his own curiosity finally won through as he looked at her rural surroundings. 


Raga: =/\= I appreciate that. ::He smiled:: It looks as though you’re in a nice locale, I hope your mission’s going well.  =/\=  


Rajel: =/\= Dying plant life in a colony without obvious reasons, so far we haven’t found out why. But we’ll dig a little deeper. Thank you again Toryn and good luck. Please send my regards to Karrod. Keep your people safe. =/\= 


Raga: =/\= Cool winds and good luck Jalana. And I will. I always look after my people. Be safe. =/\= 


Jalana nodded with a warm smile towards him, and pressed a button to end the call. With a deep breath she wrote down some notes on that call on her PADD so she wouldn’t forget. It was time to get back to Kiamon, while these ruins had been here for a while it didn’t mean she should let them wait for another ten years. 


As the screen shifted back to the slowly rotating Ronin logo Toryn sat back and idly scritched at Sylara’s feathers feeling a bit more relieved. It was good to know that their colleagues were forewarned and would give them notice if they uncovered any potential risk to the Alpha Isles. It was concerning that Karrod wasn’t the only CO who was frustrated by Starfleet Command’s distracted state currently. 


A soft hoot pulled him from his thoughts and he held up a strip of meat to the large avian on his shoulder and smiled. He rose out of his seat and strode up to the climbing axes on the wall. Time to enjoy his shore leave, there was a mountain to climb. 


JP by 


Commodore Jalana Rajel

Commanding Officer

USS Constitution B

Image Team Co-Facilitator




Lieutenant Commander Toryn Raga 

First Officer

USS Ronin - NCC-34523

Writer ID: A239410TR0


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