cool. Everybody, be cool.” Captain Lafayette brandished his disruptors at the
crew of the freighter Monarch, thinking ‘what a grand name for a
lousy little freighter’.
shot a glance over his shoulder at his men breaking open cargo crates. “Well,
boys and girls, what have we got?”
enough to make the job worth our while,” one of boarders irritably replied.
“Some computer parts, foodstuffs, medicines. A real grab-bag, but nothing
swung one disruptor around to the Monarch’s crewman who had taken two
careful steps towards the nearest door. “What’s wrong with you? I told you
guys to stay cool. Do just that and you can all go home alive.”
right,” the freighter’s XO spit back. “Why don’t you get it over with?”
Lafayette sighed and replied slowly, like someone who was tired of telling the
same story over and over again. “Listen, we are not some bloodthirsty pirate
types. We are privateers and whatever you think, there’s one hell of a
difference. For you the difference boils down to this: Cooperate and we will
just shut down your warp drive and you can limp back home on impulse. Don’t
cooperate and we will leave you stranded here. Offer any resistance and you can
find out how good your first aid skills are and maybe how good a job your techs
did on lifeboat maintenance.”
freighter’s XO was about to make another acrid remark, but the Monarch’s
captain grabbed the younger man’s shoulder and shook his head. “It’s no
use, Clarence.” Turning to the privateer he said: “We will cooperate.”
Lafayette enthused. “Now why don’t you show your cooperation by decoding
your cargo manifest for me? That way we don’t have to open every crate and
you’ll be rid of us all the sooner.”
as the Monarch’s captain nodded, one of the privateers stepped from the
airlock. “Captain,” he addressed Lafayette, “you will never believe this.
Just heard that Grelkov ran into two Alekian freighters, but they had an escort
with them. Three guesses what happened.”
Lafayette groaned. “One,
he went straight for the escort. Two, while he slugged it out with the escort
the freighters escaped. Three, he shot up the escort so badly it’s not worth
taking home as a prize. How am I doing?”
crewman grinned and gave him a thumbs-up. “Spot on, Captain.”
how lucky you were to run into such a civilized outfit as mine?” Lafayette
asked the Monarch’s crew. “Now let’s make certain your luck doesn’t run
he followed the freighter’s CO to the nearest computer terminal the privateer
shook his head to himself. ‘That idiot Grelkov. Bloody stupid even by
Nausicaan standards. If he survives in our line of work another month it’ll be
Tucker, good to see you are back on duty, Sir."
grinned. "Glad to be back, Chief Thordon, but I have to admit taking a few
days off wasn’t that bad."
Andorian chuckled. "If you would like to have my advice on it, Sir, despite
all the possible benefits I’d caution against another one of those little
don't worry, Chief, I'll stay around for a while." Ben clapped the Andorian
on the shoulder and turned towards the Hawk. "So, how is everything
coming along? We have a few hours, but I want to double-check everything before
the mission starts."
turned all business. "We are well within the time-table. So far everything
is going smoothly and I expect no problems. Let me fill you in on the details.
First of all..."
the Andorian went through the details of the modifications, the two men walked
around the small ship. All markings had already been removed from the hull and
through the cockpit windows Ben could see Reto Kevas working on the Hawk’s
Before Commander Tucker and Chief Thordon entered the Hawk, Ben consulted his padd. They had to get this right the first time – there was no room for second chances. Any mistake could jeopardize the away-team’s mission.
Prologue Chapter 1 Chapter 2 Chapter 3 Chapter 4 Chapter 5
Chapter 6 Chapter 7 Chapter 8 Chapter 9 Chapter 10 Chapter 11 Chapter 12