Back with A Vengeance

Back With a Vengeance

Admiral Cyrus Lyctan was on his porch on Zirconic Prime.  He was a tall, thin Betazoid, and had served many years in Starfleet.  He had accomplished many things in his time; reunited the Federation and the Klingon Empire, helped the Zirconians to become an independent species, assembled his own personal fleet, to name a few.  His wife, Admiral Takkerra Lyctan, walked through the doorway and sat down next to him.  She was a slim Andorian, and had been Cyrus’ First Officer back in the day.  They fell in love soon afterwards.  “Arkog called again” she told him.  R’okh Arkog was a close personal friend of the Lyctans.  He was a KDF officer at the same time the Zirconian Fleet was in power.  He was also the most flamboyant Klingon you could ever see.  Green hair, pink on his outfit….it’s no wonder he got so much disrespect from some of his fellow Klingons.  He didn’t exactly exude normality.  His fleet and the Lyctans’ had worked together during the Federation-Klingon War to restore peace between the two factions.  “What did he ask?” replied Cyrus.  “He insists we help him with his conspiracy theories.  He believes the ship disappearances have a pattern.” Cyrus sighed.  “I’ll hail the Counterpoint.”  The U.S.S. Counterpoint was one of 9 ships in the combined fleet of Captain Arkog and Admiral Lyctan, and happened to be the flagship.   Cyrus tapped his combadge.  “Captain Ubaday here.  Permission to speak freely?”  “Permission granted, old friend.”  Captain Ubaday Ulax was a beautiful, youthful female Trill.  (The Trill aged much slower than humans, so it makes sense that Ubaday could be youthful even though she would have been about 50 at this point.)  She had been the Chief Science Officer on all 7 ships that Cyrus commanded, and upon Cyrus’ retirement from command, she was granted permission to captain the Counterpoint.  “It’s so great to hear from you again, Captain!  I haven’t heard from many of the others in the past few years.  Just Zris, R’okh and the other Arkogs.  How’ve you been holding up?”  Zris Elzerov was the Chief Engineer of the Zirconian Fleet.  He served with Ubaday and the other senior staff of that fleet from the start.  Eventually, he was promoted to captain, and was given control of an Andorian prototype ship, the U.S.S. Prill.  As for “the other Arkogs”, she was referring to M’rel, B’etara, and T’lash.  They, as well as R’okh, are from the House of Arkog, founded by R’okh himself.  They served with R’okh in the old days, and continue to do so.  “Oh, quite well, but R’okh has called us up again.  We need to rendezvous with everyone in the Hromi Cluster ASAP.”  By everyone, Cyrus meant all the officers mentioned before, as well as Johncan Trinon, F’sen Bazix, Telman’lar, and K’vash Zilant.  Telman’lar was a Jem’Hadar officer the Zirconian Fleet met when the 2800 came out of the Bajoran Wormhole.  He defected to the Federation as soon as he could, and begged Lyctan to let him serve on the Takei, which was the flagship of the Fleet at the time.  He was at that point Commander Telman’lar, Federation Ambassador to the Dominion.  His personal property included estates on the Dominion Homeworld as well as Zirconic Prime, and the U.S.S. Zeus, which he used to travel where he needs to travel for his work.  It is a Danube Runabout and was instrumental in both the retaking of DS9 when the 2800 took over, as well as in the freeing of the Remans.   Johncan Trinon was another science officer in the Zirconian Fleet.  He was from somewhere in the Gamma Quadrant, although no one really knew what he was.  He turned out to be gay and married K’vash after he was exiled from the Klingon Empire.  K’vash was a Gorn, R’okh’s First Officer many years ago, but was exiled from the Empire for suggesting publicly that the Empire was unethical and quite imperfect, that they were cowards and were living the wrong way.  He stole the I.K.S. Chang, a DujHod Chariot capable of comfortably carrying 5 crew, married John, grabbed  F’sen and 2 Maquis refugees running from the True Way, and settled down comfortably in the Afehirr Nebula, an area Starfleet and the KDF rarely scan.  F’sen Bazix was a Bolian Engineering Officer, the last officer to join Cyrus’ senior staff.  She was quiet, and no one really knew much about her, but she was excited when she got to move in with John and K’vash on the Chang.  “Beaming you up now, Captain.  Oops, Admiral.  Old habit.”  The Counterpoint headed on its way to the Hromi Cluster, contacting all the others they needed to as they went along.

“It’s so good to see everyone again!” exclaimed Ubaday towards the main viewscreen.  The ships that had rendezvoused in the Hromi Cluster were having a tele-conference.  They were: the U.S.S. Counterpoint, with Takkerra, Cyrus, and Ubaday, the U.S.S. Prill with Zris, the U.S.S. Zeus with Telman’lar, the I.K.S. Vor’cha with R’okh, M’rel, B’etara, and T’lash, and the I.K.S. Chang with K’vash, John, and F’sen.  The other ships in the combined fleet that were not included in the meeting because they were simply not necessary were: the U.S.S. Valencia, a Class F Shuttle, the U.S.S. Astrea, an Exploration Cruiser, the I.K.S. G’agh, a Norgh Bird of Prey, and the U.S.S. Zirconian, a Light Cruiser, the first ship in Cyrus’ fleet.  “Why don’t we all beam over to the Counterpoint so we can discuss the situation?” asked Ubaday.  Everyone nodded their heads and were beamed to the Ready Room.

When they all got to the room, they were surprised to see Romulan Ale at everyone’s seat.  Ubaday and R’okh winked at each other, suggesting that they had planned it.  Everyone sat down and R’okh kept standing.  “A toast, to old friends and new glory!”  “Glory!” they all shouted, and clinked their glasses.  They sat down again, and R’okh, again, kept standing.  “Now, to discuss what we’re here for.  You have all heard of the recent ship disappearances, correct?”  All nodded but F’sen.  “It’s just raiders.  It’s always raiders.  This really isn’t such a big deal.”  Takkerra groaned.  “F’sen, you have always been so naïve.  This is the Alpha Quadrant.  Nothing is ever ‘just raiders’.  Nothing is ever ‘just’ anything.”  This started a dispute.  Eventually, R’okh managed to calm things down with some warning disruptor fire.  “We need to get back on topic.  This is not just raiders.  I’ve detected a pattern.”  “Enlighten us, R’okh.” Remarked Zris.  “I shall.  Every vessel that has gone missing has had an officer that had some experience in the Romulan War, fighting the Tal Shiar, as well as a scientist knowledged in Iconian history.”  “You think…The Iconians are behind this?” questioned F’sen.  “Yes, I do believe so.  I believe they’ve spent the past two millennia in another galaxy, rebuilding their empire.  Now, they’re coming back to rule what was once theirs.” The room went dead silent for a moment.  Then the comm system booted up: “Lieutenant Omat’Etan to the Ready Room.  We’re being hailed by the S.S. Azura II.  Should I route it through, Captain?”  Lieutenant Omat’Etan was another Jem’Hadar officer in the 2800 fleet.  He was always a suspicious man, not fully loyal to the Founders.  He took the first chance he got to leave them, and joined Starfleet.  “Yes, Lieutenant.” Replied Ubaday.  There was a click, and the message started:   “Shields failing!  Request immediate assistance from any vessel in range!  We are under fire by an unknown enemy!  Repeat, require immediate-”  “Everyone, beam back to your ships.  The Azura is a friend of ours, and they need help from us now.”  Ordered Cyrus.  The S.S. Azura had been a friend of the Zirconian Fleet for many years, always offering low-price commodities and friendly talk and advice.  The captain was a kind Bolian and was always up for a chat.   All the officers beamed back to their ships and set a course for the Azura.

“Captain, their shields are at 10%.  Doesn’t look they can take much more damage.”  Ubaday nodded, and opened a comm link to the other ships.  “All ships converge on the enemy!”  As the ships fired, they watched helplessly as a massive torpedo headed towards the Azura.  It was too fast to fire on it.  “Beam all the Azura’s crew to the cargo bay!”  Shouted Ubaday.  They watched the freighter explode.  Horrified, Ubaday turned to Omat’Etan, her Jem’Hadar Conn Officer.  “How many did we get?”  He turned to look at her, with a grim facial expression.  “5 – 5 of 100.”  Takkerra began to weep.  F’sen’s mouth gaped open.  Telman’lar punched a console and ended up smashing it, but Ubaday was too upset to notice.  “The vessel is opening a transwarp conduit, Captain.  Should we follow?” asked Omat’Etan.  “No.  We need to report to Starfleet our findings.”  They watched the ship disappear into the night.   “Did we get Captain Brott?”  Inquired Ubaday.  “No, Captain.  No lifesigns in the wreckage or any life pods, either.  I’m sorry.”  Ubaday and Takkerra ran out of the room crying.  R’okh clenched his fist.  F’sen fainted.  Telman’lar destroyed another console.  Then Cyrus spoke.  “Now, it’s personal.  Lieutenant, do we know what type of vessel that was?”  “I’m afraid I can’t exactly give you a registry number, Admiral, but I do believe it was Iconian.”  The bridge went silent.  Plot a course for Earth Spacedock, Lieutenant.”  Ordered Cyrus.  “Aye, sir.  Course laid in.”

The consoles Telman’lar destroyed were replaced, and the 13 officers who experienced the fight, as well as the 5 survivors from the S.S. Azura II, were called into the Stateroom to debrief Starfleet Command.  “We believe this attack was committed by the Iconians.  If they are truly back, they need to be stopped.” Stated Ubaday.  Admiral Quinn spoke up.  “Cyrus, do you remember the fight with the I.R.W. Leahval?  When Empress Sela’s ship was tractored away?” “Yes, sir.  Why do you ask?”  “The Leahval’s wreckage was found early this morning by Eraun in the Gamma Quadrant.  He tractored it through the wormhole and brought it to DS9.  We found Sela’s body on board.  Her neck had been snapped.”  (Eraun was a Vorta ally of the Lyctans during the 2800’s occupation of DS9.)  Cyrus gulped.  “So…do you believe they’re back, sir?”  “I’m not sure, Lyctan.  But if they are, we’re going to need as many allies as we can get.  The Iconians are a force to be reckoned with.”  A Bajoran ensign walked into the room and raised her hand.  “Yes, Ensign?  What is it?”  Inquired Admiral Quinn.  “We’ve….we’ve lost communication with everyone in the Beta Ursae Block.  DS9, Cardassia, Bajor….everyone.”  “Thank you, Ensign.  You may leave.”  She nodded her head and left the room.  “Lyctan, we’re going to direct every ship we can afford to send to transwarp to DS9.   Gather your fleet, along with all Zirconian ships.  Telman’lar, contact the Dominion.  Ask them to send support through the wormhole.  R’okh, the Klingon Empire.  I want you all to transwarp to DS9 within an hour.  Bring as many ships as you can and transwarp wherever you need to.”

Our 12 heroes gathered as many ships as they could, and bravely left for DS9.  They brought along, to name a few, the U.S.S. Hawking, I.K.S. G’agh, U.S.S. Valencia, and the U.S.S. Zirconian, as well as entire fleet of Klingon Empire ships and also one of the Zirconian’s ships.  When they got there, many phasers were firing.  There were Dominion, Starfleet, Cardassian, Zirconian, Klingon, even Deferi ships on one side, and Iconian, True Way, Tal Shiar, Breen, and Hirogen ships on the other.  Our heroes and their allies fought with valor and bravery, but many lives were lost.  Eventually, the remaining enemy ships retreated from DS9, but not without great casualties on both sides.   Our heroes and their allies discovered that all planets and installations in Beta Ursae had been taken.  All that they could take back was DS9.  They contacted their allies and debriefed them.  They were told to hold DS9, and all other ships not defending DS9 across the Alpha, Beta, and Gamma quadrants were recalled to defensive positions.  Gradually, though, allies began to fall.  The three quadrants banded together to fight off the Iconians.  Of course, the Iconians found new allies as well.  They enlisted the help of the Hirogen and the Breen, the Tal Shiar, and the True Way, and continued to gain footholds across the galaxy.  Soon, all that was left of the Federation and its allies were: The Zirconian Fleet, the Dominion Homeworld, as well as some Jem’Hadar ships, a small CDF fleet (Cardassia was taken as well), Qo’nos, Earth, Vulcan, Zirconic Prime, Andoria, a reasonable amount of Starfleet ships, the Undine (they realized the danger and decided to join the fight), Betazed, and Tellar Prime.  This became the New Federation and an equal amount of ships were sent to defend each planet that still stood.  All ships were equipped with transwarp capabilities so that they could provide aid as soon as it was needed.

“This is where we make our final stand, friends.  We must believe in ourselves.  We have fought great threats before, and with all of us together, we may yet survive this one.  We have lost many friends, but they would want us to keep fighting.  Together, we stand.  Together, the Iconians shall bow down to us!  To friends!”  Exclaimed Cyrus.  He was at a New Federation summit in Fluidic Space.  The most important dignitaries were granted asylum there, as it was one of the last refuges from the Iconians.  They did not yet know of its existence.  He was to leave on one last mission to try and save the galaxy.  There was only one option left: an alliance with the Borg.

Admiral Lyctan, his wife, John, Ubaday, Zris, Telman’lar, R’okh, M’rel, K’vash, F’sen, and B’etara were sent to the Delta Quadrant with the Zirconian Fleet and some other New Federation ships in search of the Borg.  As they made their way through the quadrant, they found many dead worlds, killed by the Iconians so that they couldn’t resist or assist the New Federation.  Talax was gone.  They found a few remote Talaxian convoys that managed to hide using whatever anomalies they could find, and added them to their force.  They searched for days, and found derelict cubes everywhere.  Eventually, they made it to Borg Space.  “This is Unimatrix 002.  We are the Borg.  You will be assimilated.  Your technological and personal traits will add to our perfection.”  “Good to see the Borg are still in decent shape.  Hail the Diadem.”  Ordered Lyctan.  (The Diadem is the Borg Queen’s personal ship.)  “Who dare disturb the Borg Queen?  Oh, that’s a Starfleet insignia….hm…I thought Starfleet would be dead by now.”  Remarked the Borg Queen.   “Is that…the Caretaker’s Wife I see?  How did you get assimilated?”  (The Caretaker’s Wife was an extremely powerful Delta Quadrant entity.  Normally, she would likely be able to hold her own against the Borg.)  “Knave!  You think they could’ve captured me against my will?  I let them assimilate me.  They needed a new Queen, anways.  The more important thing is how you’re still alive and how you managed to find me here.”  Threw back the Queen.  “Three quadrants have been attacked and taken by the Iconian Empire.   The few of us who survived their attacks have created a group called ‘The New Federation.’  We are on our last legs.  You have seen the damage the Iconians can do.  I saw those derelict hulks you used to call Cubes.  This does not need to be a permanent alliance.  Just until the end of this war.”  The Queen tilted her head, left and right, weighing the consequences of her actions.  “Very well.  We will assist you.  We know the coordinates of Iconia II.  Call your people.  Bring as many reinforcements as you like.  When you are ready, we will take a transwarp conduit to Iconia II and make our final stand there.”  “Thank you, my Queen.  How gracious of you.”

Lyctan called the officials of the New Federation and told them to send as many reinforcements as they could spare.  All New Federation citizens were taken to Earth and all unnecessary defence was sent to Borg Space.  Our heroes took a combined fleet of 20 Undine, 30 Klingon, 50 Federation, 5 Cardassian, 3 Deferi, and  10 Borg, 15 Dominion, 8 Talaxian, and 6 Zirconian ships to Iconia II.  The battle began.

“Photon torpedoes, full spread!  Tell all ships to perform a planetary bombardment!  There are millions of Iconian military personnel and ships down there!  If we can destroy this installation, we may win this war!”  Cyrus watched as the Iconians suffered the same fate as they had the last time.  He didn’t know, though, that the Iconians considered this their final stand, as well.  They had seen this attack coming.  Omat’Etan yelled out.  “Hail from the Chang, sir! Iconians boarding!  F’sen is dead!  Require immediate assistance!  Beaming over a security team, sir!”  Cyrus was filled with rage at young F’sen’s death, but he knew he needed to keep calm.  Captain Brott, F’sen, all those civilians the Iconian Empire killed- they would die in vain if he didn’t avenge their deaths right there and then.  “Prepare security details to beam over to all ships!  Send a message to the Fleet!  Break out my personal collection of weapons!  It’s time to defend our ships!”  Exclaimed Lyctan.  100 Iconian troops beamed onto the Prill.  As the best engineer in Starfleet, Zris had a few tricks up his sleeve.  He tortured them and killed them one by one.  10 Iconian troops beamed onto the Chang.  After they killed F’sen, they moved on to the other rooms on the Chariot.  Finding no one, they finally moved onto the bridge.  They were ambushed by 20 Starfleet Security Officers, K’vash, John, 2 Borg Drones, and the two Maquis refugees.  They didn’t stand a chance.  The Collective was quite happy to have some new Iconian drones.  The Iconians didn’t even try to beam onto the Borg ships.  They knew it was pointless.  The Iconian troops that beamed onto the Cardassian ships were tortured until they offered up every piece of information they knew, and were then slaughtered.  Unfortunately, the Deferi, being the peaceful people they are, were simply wiped out by a combination of Kamikaze boarding parties and planetary fire.  The Klingons beat the boarders on their vessels to death with Bat’leths, the traditional Klingon blade.  Only the Talaxian convoys, the Zirconian ships, the U.S.S. Zeus and the U.S.S. Valencia were not boarded.  They took the opportunity to focus fire on the military centers down on Iconia II.  Lyctan brought out his own Pulsewave Assault, and prepared for the worst.  As soon as enemies boarded, Lyctan would fire harshly, killing as many as he could as painfully as possible.  He defended the ship, but that fight changed him.  He was once a kind man, but watching all those friends die, especially one of his senior staff….he couldn’t handle it.   Lyctan was old.  He’d had enough of watching his friends die.  “Send a message to the Fleet!  Destroy that planet at all costs!  Take no prisoners!”  He watched the final moments of the Iconians, and in that flash of light in the final moments of Iconia II, saw the monster that he had become.  He saw the memories of the Iconians who had tried to make friends thousands of years ago, and created enemies instead.   He remembered that nothing was black and white.  He realized that he had committed acts so heinous to protect the Federation that they violated the Federation Charter itself.  He realized the truth of whom he had become in trying to protect the people he loved.  He had become the very thing which he sought to destroy.  “Incoming tele-conference from the fleet, sir.  Should I put it on the main viewscreen?”  Asked Omat’Etan.  “Yes, Lieutenant.  Thank you.”  The viewscreen came on. “Captain, we’ve done it!  Iconians all over our Galaxy are leaving!  We survived the unthinkable!  This is a cause for celebration!”  Exclaimed Zris.  “Sure, Zris.  You all go ahead.”  He turned off the viewscreen and gave command of the bridge back to Ubaday.  “Set a course back to the transwarp conduit.  Get me to the nearest prison.”  He ordered Ubaday.  She was about to ask why, but he put his hand up the way he used to.  It was a gesture he used to say “Trust me.”  He headed for the brig.

10 years later

The Iconians had left the galaxy, returning to whatever other galaxy they had claimed as their home.  100 of 147 ships survived the battle at Iconia II.  They were all repaired and put at the front lines of their respective races.  The Federation was beginning to start again.  What was left of every race that stood after the battle, other than the Borg, of course, joined.  All seemed to be good.  Every officer who participated in the Battle of Iconia II was given the highest commendations by their respective worlds.  K’vash and John were given a formal apology from the Klingon Empire, and were invited to become members once again.  They were even allowed to keep the I.K.S. Chang, which was originally stolen property.  Zris and Ubaday finally made Admiral, and the Arkog house became extremely influential in Klingon politics.  Telman’lar was given a medal of valor by the Dominion, and became the most decorated Jem’Hadar of his generation.  F’sen had one of the most extravagant funerals in Bolian history.  There were even Undine there!  The Undine pulled all negative ties out of the Milky Way Galaxy, and began afresh, starting with becoming allies with the Federation.  Omat’Etan took command of the Counterpoint and was the first Jem’Hadar to captain a Starfleet flagship.  The Talaxians were granted Federation membership and were given the most powerful propulsion technology so they could visit the Alpha Quadrant whenever they felt like it.  It was not all good, however.  The few True Way, Tal Shiar, Breen, and Hirogen left after the war created a new society called Shadow Beneath the Sun, and followed the Iconians to their home galaxy.  They, unlike the Iconians, did not back off, and continued secret operations in the Milky Way Galaxy.  Admiral Quinn was assassinated by their forces.  Admiral Cyrus Lyctan asked to be taken to a mental asylum and was treated for depression and PTSD.  He eventually managed to become well enough to live with his wife again, but he was never the same man after the Iconian War.  The Federation now relies on the Zirconian Fleet as its primary line of defense ships.  Of course, the only officers who continued on working in space are: Ubaday, Zris, Telman’lar, and Omat’Etan.

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