The Ones With a Vision



The Ones With a Vision


Benjamin Sisko had known about the Vulcan resistance
and its activities from his travels collecting tributes for the Intendant.
Along with Miles O’Brien, he had arranged a meeting with Tuvok and his resistance
cell in the Badlands to discuss setting up a Terran resistance, and they
realized they would have to allow a mind-meld to convince the Vulcans there
was no duplicity on their part. They both agreed to this, and learned much
about the tactics the resistance had used since it was first formed.

Its origins
a century earlier were most bizarre. The old Terran Empire had been attempting
to force the planet Halka to allow its dilithium reserves to be mined for
use in its frequent conflicts with the Klingons, and had sent the I.S.S Enterprise
under Captain James Tiberius Kirk to convey its demands.
 
The Halkans refused to comply despite the threat of a phaser barrage
against their cities. They were prepared to die as a race, as an alternative
to being what they perceived as willing participants in the Empire’s wars,
and warned that its policy of rule by terror would one day backfire. By the
time the entire galaxy was conquered, the Halkan leader warned, the Empire
would no longer be able to contain the collective rage of all its slave planets,
and would collapse in a devastating civil war.

 An hour
earlier the Enterprise’s Vulcan first officer would never have questioned
the Empire’s orders to annihilate the Halkans. But while his captain and
the rest of the away team were returning from the planet’s surface, a transporter
malfunction had caused them to change places with their counterparts from
an alternate universe where Vulcans no longer ruled an empire built by conquest
and expansion. They were now members of a united federation with Earth and
other planets, and Spock had learned much about this federation from a mind-meld
with one of its officers.  Before
returning to his own universe, Captain Kirk’s Federation counterpart urged
Spock to consider the Halkan prediction of civil war, and to try to forestall
this by leading a movement to reform the Empire.

Kirk’s own
landing party materialized inside the transporter chamber just as the counterparts
beamed out, and Kirk could tell at once his counterpart had caused Spock
to question his loyalty to him.  But
it was already too late. Realizing Kirk intended to have him killed, Spock
was forced to get rid of his captain in self-defense and take command of
the Enterprise. With help from Marlena Moreau, a Starfleet chemist Kirk had
kept around as part plaything and part punching bag, Spock and his security
team located and took control of the Tantalus Field, Kirk’s secret weapon
for making enemies “disappear”.

Spock still
had two hours to act against the Halkans per a private communication from
Starfleet. He decided to make use of this time by beaming down to the planet’s
surface and sharing his recent experience with them, and learned the Federation
and Halkan governments were very similar; the primary difference was size.
He sought to have a mining team from the Enterprise allowed to begin operations
on the planet’s surface in exchange for a promise on his part to work to
reform the Empire so that every planet would have a voice in its policies.
 
By convincing the Halkans they were of more value as a living model
to pattern reforms after than as an extinct race, Spock obtained the concessions
he had asked for. With a fresh supply of dilithium, he took the Enterprise
to Vulcan.

Spock was
successful in convincing Vulcan’s ruler T’Pau of the need to reform Vulcan’s
government, and to allow a measure of dissent on Vulcan and its colonized
worlds. Despite considerable opposition in the senate, whose members were
appointed for life from Vulcan’s most powerful business leaders, they were
able to organize the first popular elections to this body as vacancies occurred
over the next few years. They then set about to create a governing council
patterned after the Halkans and consisting of Vulcan’s praetor, proconsul,
vice-proconsul, and representatives elected from each of the Vulcan-colonized
worlds. The Halkans elected Tharn, their own council leader, as their representative
on Vulcan’s council, where their pacifist views found a widespread following.
 
By now Spock was an admiral at Starfleet Command, and had begun
to openly advocate extending the reforms begun on Vulcan throughout the Empire.
When Robert Wesley became caesar almost a decade after the transporter accident
he sought to have Spock set up on treason charges and executed, but Spock
had learned of this, and engineered a coup to overthrow Wesley before he
had a chance to consolidate his power.

Having seized
control of the Empire, Spock began to carry out the reforms he had been advocating.
He abolished the title of emperor, as well as the Empire’s Earth-and-dagger
emblem, and ordered that elections be held to expand the council created
by the Vulcans to include delegates from each of the occupied worlds throughout
the Empire, and Earth was allowed to elect representatives as well. This effectively
moved the Empire’s center of government to Vulcan, but then everything collapsed.

The basis
for the treason charges Wesley had tried to level against Spock had been
the influence Spock and other Vulcans had allowed the Halkans to acquire
in Vulcan’s government. Their calls for disarmament were well intentioned,
but this was not a practical approach, and not only because of the Klingons.
A large faction in Vulcan’s senate that had support from Earth still opposed
their planet’s reform efforts, and it was to win over this faction that Spock
had made Vulcan the Empire’s capital. But expanding the council served to
expand Halkan influence throughout the Empire as well. Under pressure from
the council, Spock even agreed to cancel production of the new Excelsior-class
battleships, and this alienated Vulcan’s senate even further. Spock also
miscalculated Earth’s reaction to his reforms. Wesley had been killed in
the coup that brought Spock to power, but those of his supporters who escaped
held secret meetings with a number of starship captains to discuss retaking
the Empire by force. It was revealed that the Empire’s scientists were working
on an experimental transwarp engine, which, by enabling starships to travel
many times faster, was expected to finally give Starfleet the edge needed
to conquer the Klingons. The captains, who included the Enterprise’s current
commander, Hikaru “Scarface” Sulu, realized the Halkans would lobby to have
the transwarp project canceled, and Spock would most likely agree to this.
Soon a fleet of starships was converging on Vulcan.

Vulcan’s
defenses were overwhelmed. The Council Building was stormed, killing the
council members and Vulcan’s own leaders. A ruling committee headed by Admiral
Cartwright was formed, with a puppet government installed on Vulcan, composed
of senators who took part in the coup, and the Empire’s Earth-and-dagger
emblem was restored. Spock was sentenced to death, but was able to place
his katra into a follower who escaped, and in this state, witnessed the formation
of an underground resistance.

For their
perceived efforts to subvert the Empire, the Halkans felt the new government’s
full wrath and were annihilated. Those who perished did not include Tharn,
who had died from natural causes shortly after the elections Spock ordered
were held.

War broke
out with the Klingons almost immediately after Spock was overthrown. The
Excelsior project was re-instated, but efforts to utilize transwarp were
futile and early Klingon victories were made possible by the Empire’s recent
upheavals. During the war, however, the explosion of Praxis crippled Klingon
industries and would have led to their being conquered if the Empire’s occupation
of Bajor hadn’t unexpectedly brought it into conflict with the neighboring
Cardassian Union.

Like many
people who had suffered under Terran rule, the Bajorans had seen their hopes
for better living conditions dashed when Spock was overthrown and his reforms
scuttled, and began to form their own resistance. The Vulcans shared tactics
with them, but the amount of Earth-controlled space separating the two worlds
made close coordination between the two groups impractical, and the Vulcan
resistance largely collapsed as the war with
the Klingons led many Vulcans to put aside their differences with Earth.
 
The Bajorans also distanced themselves from their Vulcan allies
as they began receiving arms shipments from Cardassia. Encouraged by the
early Klingon victories and with these weapons, their activities threatened
to stir an uprising by the time Praxis exploded, and when Earth sent ships
to crush the rebellion, Cardassia intervened. The Empire brought about its
own downfall by driving others into an alliance against it.
 
Alliance forces that overran the Bajoran sector captured the Excelsior
prototype and were able to study its every strength and weakness.
 
Earth’s last defenses were overwhelmed after a war lasting more
than two decades, and Earth was made the same wasteland its empire had made
so many other planets.

Bajor’s
fortunes improved after the war, and the Bajorans had welcomed the chance
to join the Alliance and turn the tables on their conquerors. However, a
number of vedeks and other Bajorans realized that by joining the Alliance
their people had become no better than the Terrans had been, and gave shelter
to human and Vulcan slaves who had escaped their overseers.
 
These included Tuvok, a security crewman on the Excelsior at the
time of its capture. The vedeks also made sure slaves who were too young
to remember knew about the different way of life that Spock and other Vulcans
had tried to offer them. The Vulcans revived their resistance movement as
their world was being overrun, and with the help of sympathetic Bajorans,
located sites in the Badlands where they constructed bases undetectable to
the Alliance.

Both Empire
and Alliance knew whose visit had such a profound effect on Spock, and through
Spock the Vulcan people as a whole. After overthrowing Spock, Admiral Cartwright
ordered that anyone found to have crossed over from the other universe be
executed at once to avoid any further “profound effects,” and the Alliance
agreed this was a sound policy.

The possibility
of deliberately crossing to the other universe was not lost on scientists
from either power, and it wouldn’t be lost on the rebels, either. Spock had
confiscated a device the Federation personnel had used to return to their
own universe, and years later, with Mt. Seleya under Earth control, this
would be used to take his katra to the Federation. But after Spock had left
the Enterprise, Chief Engineer Montgomery Scott raised the possibility of
creating a similar device with Captain Sulu, and they were able to conduct
their own transporter experiments. It was realized
early on that even if the transporter could be rigged as a crossover device
there was no way to detect with sensors beforehand where in another universe
an object was being transported. They did, nevertheless, figure they could
scan objects in another universe at the moment the transporter was activated
and interdimensional contact established. In this way they were able to calibrate
the transporter so that if a planet was below the same planet was

in the universe being targeted. It was even found possible to send clipped
subspace messages to the landing parties, and with Uhura’s help, they were
able to monitor subspace communications in other dimensions for short periods
of time. Sulu and Uhura continued these experiments on the Excelsior with
help from Tuvok when Sulu was given command of that ship, and earned theta
designations following the Excelsior’s capture by helping the Alliance conduct
its own research. This was stepped up after the war’s end, and by comparing
intercepted communications with the observations of the original landing
party, the Alliance was able to identify the universe the “visitors” had most
likely come from.

After joining
the rebels Tuvok used data from his work on the Excelsior to help them develop
crossover technology as well, anticipating it might be useful one day.

The mind-meld had been an interesting experience.
Later that day, as O’Brien eyed the small, cylindrical device in Tuvok’s
possession, he agreed that it could indeed come in handy one day.


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