Prologue – A gathering of wolves

 

„Ma’am!“ The young Lieutenant looked over his shoulder to make sure he had gained his superiors attention.

Commander M’rroah stepped over to the ops station and looked at the Lieutenant’s console. “What is it?”

“Romulans, Ma’am. Two Warbirds and at least four escorts at extreme sensor range. They are flying parallel to our course, but in the opposite direction.”

“I see”, the Caitian replied. “Very well, notify Vulcan High Command and keep track of those ships as long as you can. There isn’t much else we can do about it. Our job is to guard this convoy.”

While she walked back to the command chair the ops officer complied with her orders, but once she had sat down he turned to her again. “These bastards are sure getting bolder every day. Now they don’t even bother to cloak their ships. Looks like they will invade in full force any day now.”

“You are forgetting the Klingons, Lieutenant. As long as they are around the Romulans won’t invade the Federation in full force.”

“Yeah… the Klingons.” Ops sounded scornful. “I suppose they would keep the Romulans at bay, but only so they can call dibs on our worlds themselves.”

When he got no reply from his CO he continued. “I heard the Cardies are harassing our ships almost as far as Betazed now. Looks to me like the wolves are moving in for the kill from all sides and we can’t do anything to stop them.”

“NO! You are wrong!”

The strength of the Caitians voice nearly made the young human jump out of his seat.

“These aren’t wolves Lieutenant. They are vultures. But we are not dead yet and we will stop them, whatever it takes. The Federation and Starfleet have survived the worst the universe could throw at them and we will survive this one too. Someone will put an end to this chaos and if we can help them do it we will. So get back to your job and keep track of those Romulans!”

“YES MA’AM!” This time the Lieutenant really got off his seat and stood to attention before he went back to his sensors.

M’rroah allowed herself a smile at this sight, even if her thoughts weren’t happy ones.

‘How convinced am I really that we will all get out of this? He is certainly right about the Romulans and the Cardassians getting bolder every day, now that hey had time to gauge our strength or what’s left of it. And god alone knows what the Klingons will be up to next.’

She walked across the bridge to the replicator and ordered a cup of tea. While facing the replicator with her back towards the bridge crew M’rroah allowed herself a frown. ‘There are certainly enough of us who are willing to fight, but how many of us have enough stamina left in them for another war?’

Exhaling she turned back and let her eyes wander around the bridge. There wasn’t one face in the room that didn’t show obvious signs of weariness and exhaustion. While the Perseus hadn’t taken part in any of the battles in what had been dubbed the Chaos War they had seen their share of combat when the Romulans decided to attack the weakened Federation. Since then they had been on almost constant escort duty for the transport convoys near Vulcan, but there just weren’t enough ships left to guard even half the convoys needed to serve planets like Earth or Andoria which had been hit hardest by the war.

‘I just hope there really will be someone around to put an end to this mess, and soon’, she thought, but try as she might M’rroah couldn’t imagine who that someone could be.

 

Prologue    Chapter 1    Chapter 2    Chapter 3    Chapter 4    Chapter 5

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