“I’m reading subspace signatures in bound,” Perkins suddenly stated, breaking silence on the bridge.

Chris immediately broke conversation with an ensign and headed for the center of the bridge. “How long?” he asked as he came to a stop next to the ops station.

She tapped in a few commands, examined the console, and said, “About one minute.”

Chris instinctively looked up at the screen. One minute, and a battle of hell would begin.

A sensor alarm sounded, but it didn’t draw his attention from the view screen, even thought he couldn’t see any thing. “The Destroyer’s moving away to intercept.”

Chris remained staring at the view screen a moment longer, then turned and walked back to the command chair. As he sat down, he ordered, “Follow. Prepare to begin firing tachyon bursts into the shield grid.”

“Aye, sir,” James replied.

The view screen then changed from the hazy view of the planet towards the hazy view of the stars and the Destroyer. However, as the Dragon moved out of the upper atmosphere, the view cleared. Immediately, the hundreds of thousands of Britar and Hintaru ships could be seen.

It was a welcome sight, as the Dragon’s shields were still down to 85%. Chris audibly sighed his relief.

The minute passed by slowly, the Dragon slowly caught up to the Destroyer. Finally, the fleet and the Destroyer began exchanging deadly fire. The Destroyer didn’t even flinch as the weapons fire impacted on its shields. However, it was causing a lot of damage to the other ships as they attempted to disperse.

The Dragon came up to it finally. Chris smiled and ordered, “Open a channel to Admiral Piarn.”

Immediately, the chaos was replaced by Admiral Piarn’s face. “Admiral, we’re ready to begin firing the tachyon bursts into the shield grid.”

Piarn nodded and stated, “We’re also ready. Begin immediately.”

The screen immediately changed again. Chris stood up, staring at the Destroyer as the Dragon approached it. He waited, letting the moment last.

Finally, he ordered, “Fire.”

Blue bursts of energy immediately left the Dragon and impacted upon the Destroyer’s shields. They were constantly firing at every point possible on the shields.

Suddenly, the Destroyer diverted its attention at the Dragon. James was quick and immediately banked out of the way, but it wasn’t quick enough. A few energy beams impacted on the Dragon’s shields, causing every one on the bridge to be either thrown from their position or simply thrown around their console.

Chris found himself lying face down on the deck between the Ops and Helm. He immediately stood up to see the view screen was damaged. He helped Sarah stand back up, and went back to the command chair. Along the way he noted some damaged consoles and light fixtures.

“They reset shield harmonics,” Perkins stated in a hoarse voice. “Teams have beamed aboard.”

“Commander Perkins, you sound injured,” Chris stated.

She turned around, allowing him to see that she was indeed injured. A rather large cut was on the side of her neck. Chris inhaled sharply at the sight, then looked at one of the medical officers on the bridge. The medical officer immediately went to Perkins' side and began repairing the wound.

The ship shook again, but not as violently. James was furiously tapping at the helm, trying to keep the Destroyer from finishing its work.

Chris looked at a tactical on the small console next to the command chair. The Destroyer had already swung around and was attempting to finish the Dragon. And since James was forced into wild, extreme maneuvers, it was catching up.

“Damage report,” Chris ordered.

Perkins turned around, the wound fully healed. She tapped in a few commands and stated, “There are some microfractures on the hull on decks sixteen through twenty seven. Some scorching of outer hull on the stardrive section, and some buckling of the hull on deck seven. No casualties reported, but plenty of injuries. Shields are down to sixty-two percent, and one of the emitters on the port side of the ship is down.”

The ship shook violently again, but didn’t send any one flying. Chris tapped his comm badge and said, “Harriman to Engineering.”

For a moment, no reply came back. Finally, “Tarkent here, Captain, go ahead.”

Chris studied his console momentarily, then stated, “On that downed shield emitter, reroute power through the secondary life support and into the secondary power feed.”

“Beginning the process…”

After a moment, Perkins confirmed, “The shields in that section are back online, though only at forty-five percent.”

“I’ll take it,” Chris commented. The ship shuddered momentarily.

Suddenly, the view screen came back to life. He looked at it and stated, “Put the Destroyer on screen.”

Not a moment after the view changed did an explosion rip apart one of the support structures on the Destroyer.

“That’s the fifth shield generator that’s been taken out,” Perkins said. Chris smiled, knowing that they were starting to win…

Three more explosions simultaneously ripped part of the support structure apart. “Their shields are beginning to fluctuate,” Perkins reported.

Chris grinned as he saw the Destroyer begin to hang back. It stopped firing at the Dragon and began to turn. Chris then immediately began to notice the dark-blue crystal begin to glow brighter.

He lost his grin at that sight, knowing what it meant. Finally, two more explosions ripped through the Destroyer.

“Come about!” he stated loudly. “Target all weapons and fire!”

As the Dragon began to turn, Quantum and Photon torpedoes fired from the aft launcher, impacting on the shields of the Destroyer.

“It’s working!” Perkins exclaimed in an excited voice. “Their shields are going down!”

When the Dragon faced the Destroyer, torpedoes again were launched. Only this time, due to the Alliance fleet, they hit no shields. A few impacted on the support structures, but the rest hit the temporal crystal.

“The Destroyer is creating distortions in the space/time continuum!” Perkins stated in a now fearful voice.

Several odd deformations in the starfield began to appear. As if a giant hand had seized a section of the fleet, and closed, several starships began to explode. However, the explosions of matter/antimatter reactions and the fire burning up the now exposed oxygen was covered and distorted by the distortions.

Phaser fire from the Dragon began to hit the Destroyer’s temporal crystal as another volley of torpedoes were expelled. Definite deformations along the crystal were now becoming apparent.

The Dragon suddenly jerked from its parallel course with the Destroyer to avoid a temporal distortion. Ahead, the starfield could no longer be easily seen. The Dragon shuddered violently momentarily as it narrowly avoided a distortion.

“It’s working,” Perkins reported. “The crystal is beginning to go critical. But it’s sending space/time distortions through out the entire system as a result of the damage.”

“I think it’s safe to say we can get the hell out of here without worrying about the Destroyer being able to make it out in one piece!” Chris shouted above the noise of the shuddering ship. A console at the back of the bridge suddenly exploded, sending an officer to the front of the bridge. A medical officer was at his side in an instant, but she shook her head and closed his eyes with her hand.

“If you can, tell the fleet to get out of here,” Chris ordered. “James, get us out of here!”

“I’ll try!” James replied, working furiously at the controls. “It’s hard to tell where we are, but I think I’m heading in the right direction.

“This whole place is now simply becoming disrupted,” Tom suddenly reported in a raised voice. “This whole system is going to be subject to these distortions, if the entire system itself doesn’t become one large distortion. As projected, it will be uninhabitable for a long time.”

“I’d rather not be here for that,” Sarah commented.

“Like wise,” Chris said. “James?”

“I’m working on it!” James stated in a voice of annoyance and frustration.

Chris stared intently at the view screen, his hand holding Sarah’s in anticipation, dread, fear, and excitement.

The ops station sent sparks flying as the ship shuddered violently. Perkins stood and got away from the console, not wanting a recourse of her last injury.

And suddenly, the starfield was visible again. As suddenlu as it had started, the shuddering stopped. Chris looked around the bridge, confirming that they were still intact.

There was a silence on the bridge as every one looked around in confusion. Finally, Tom confirmed, “We made it.”

Chris smiled and sighed as he slumped in his chair, hand still holding on tightly to Sarah’s. He looked at her to find her staring back at him, smiling.

Captain’s log: Supplemental

With the loss of their most prized possession, the Vorkalai have begun a retreat back into their space. I’ve heard that we will continue to advance through Vorkalai space until we fully win the war.

However, the Dragon has been severely damaged. Preliminary projections say that it’ll be five weeks before we can rejoin the war effort. So, for now, we’re working on those repairs. Several crewmembers have been severely injured, Lieutenant Marquet among them. We’ve unfortunately had thirty casualties…all of them Starfleet officers. So it seems we’ll have more Hintaru added to the crew roster.

He was determined. She had almost died today, and he didn’t want to risk losing her before he even had a chance to get to really know her.

How ever, he was still shy. Tom casually stepped into sick bay. Sickbay was still a flurry of movement as injuries were still being tended to. All ready a day since the battle, and the injured still needed tending.

That and the fact that injuries were still occurring as people attempted to repair the threatening damage done to the ship. Other systems, such as the shields, were still off line, and not even being tended to yet.

He found Ada sitting up in a bio-bed reading a data padd. He approached her cautiously, still trying to come up with words.

When he finally approached the foot of the bed, she looked up. She smiled warmly at him, and said, “Tom, it’s great you came to see me. I need to talk to you.”

He was curious as to why she had called him by his first name, but he passed it by for the moment. “Actually, I came to talk to you.” He moved to the side of her bed, hesitating. “I…” He was still at a loss for words, his mind a jumble. He couldn’t think straight.

She suddenly took his head in hers. He looked at her to see her smiling at him. “I know,” she stated softly. As suddenly as she had taken his hand, she pressed her lips to his. He was surprised, and just stared at her as she closed her eyes.

When she pulled away, his jaw was dropped. He quickly closed it, confusion and delight mixing with in him. She simply continued to smile at him.

Star Trek Dragon graphics and written material copyright Jon Wasik. Star Trek is a registered trademark
of Paramount Pictures, a Viacom company. No copyright infringement intended