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The Spice Mines

Posted on Fri May 28th, 2021 @ 3:44am by Lieutenant Ilbis IlkunĀ  MD & Admiral Sakkath & T'Han & Commander Nathan Hawkins & Lieutenant Commander Chire & Lieutenant Dylan Blake & Lieutenant Cyrus Marner

Mission: Cheese
Location: Ni'Var
Timeline: 2430-08-31, 18:15

The V'Shar Officers held their disruptors out and set on the maximum settings as they escorted their prey through the streets of Ni'Var. It had only been half a day since they had arrived in orbit and what had looked like it was going to be a peaceful, friendly exchange had turned deadly. A bar fight in a Vulcan Sector restaurant had led to the death of one of the Starfleet Officers and the Romulans calling for the immediate incarceration of the Starfleet visitors. They were able to intervene in time before the mob overtook the rule of law, but even now the risk of bloodshed was still great.

The police held their prisoners firmly, disruptors digging at their backs as the whine of their energy whispered through the air. The citizens of Ni'Var watched as they walked. Some cheered, others jeered, and a third group remained unmoved as the Starfleet personnel were moved moved down the street and toward the corner.

"You've made a mistake," Doctor Ilbis Ilkun protested as they kept ushering them forward. "We didn't attack the Romulans, they attacked us."

"And killed one of our own," chimed a Benzite that had gotten pulled along with them.

Lieutenant Blake who'd previously voice his unhappiness of their arrest allowed the others to speak up this time. He was more concerned about Chire whom as very subdued since he and Marner had stopped her from taking flight in the bar. The last time she'd had an incident like that she'd fainted afterwards too, a dusty street corner on Ni'Var wasn't the most ideal place to have a medical incident.

One of the Romulans challenged, "Remain quiet." He nodded to T'Han.

The Vulcan V'Shar Officer nodded crisply at the Romulan guard. Pulling a comlink from her belt she tapped a single control on the device. A Romulan transporter beam enveloped the prisoners whisking them away toward the Vulcan Police Station, or so they thought. Instead of the police station they were, instead, taken to an immense sandstone colored cave. A single entrance to the cave was to their left and it was very dimly lit.

Doctor Ilkun had a very bad feeling overtake him. He looked around the cavernous room, looking for any clue as to what would happen next. He wondered if they were going to live to see another day. The Romulans had clearly already decided their fates. He looked at T'Han, "So are you our judge, jury, and executioner all in one package?"

T'Han turned toward them as she holstered her disruptor. The Romulans began to strip off their military uniforms to reveal civilian tunics beneath, "You will have to pardon our tactics. The Tal'Shiar have been watching all Starfleet personnel closely while on the surface. We needed to extract you before they came for you because of the brawl."

"You are... our saviors?" Cyrus remarked, "And Tal'Shiar had been watching. If I may ask several questions. Do we need to keep these on?" holding up the restrained hands. "Who are you and is there something you are obviously needing some help on?"

"Push in for ten seconds then pull out," T'Han said explaining how the magnetic restraints would automatically disengage. "As I said my name is T'Han and I am a representative of the V'Shar, or rather Vulcan Intelligence if you prefer. These are my counterparts," she motioned to the Romulans, "who are also part of the unification movement."

Doctor Ilkun sighed, "Then why do you need us? You already have unification." He popped off the restraints just as the Vulcan had said, but momentarily debated slamming his claws into her for her duplicity.

"You misunderstand what unification is," one of the Romulan guards protested. "We do not have unification, we have a world under martial law where efforts are made to make it look as if we are as one."

"If you didn't intervene what would have happened to us?" Blake asked still trying to piece together these people weren't law enforcement officer condemning them.

Chire remained silent, watching what was happening and feeling no less embarrassed and appalled by her behaviour.

"That's an easy one," one of the Romulans said with a chuckle.

T'Han motioned toward her counterpart, "Local authorities were not sent to apprehend you. Most likely, had the Tal'Shiar made it before we did, you would be in one of their secret facilities. That is the best case scenario." The Romulan moved his finger along his neck as T'Han spoke, letting them know the worst case scenario. T'Han did not miss the message, "That is one way of putting it."

"Oh I see," Dylan swallowed heavily.

Cyrus pushed in for ten seconds on the restraints and smiled when they were deactivated. "Well then, thank you for the rescue." handing the restraints back to T'Han. "I am much obliged, I wouldn't like to be just mere speck of dust or nothing at all from being hit by that disruptor. And if you please I am going to take a moment of silence for the loss of the man whom sacrificed himself. To save us." His voice going hoarse with a bit of emotion. Cyrus bowed his head, closing his eyes offering up a silent prayer of thanks and gratitude for that young man. When it was done, he opened his eyes wiping away a tear that had trickled down his cheek.

"We grieve with you that we were unable to prevent the death of your officer," another voice said from the dark distance of the cave. The shadows covered the face of the man, but he was wearing a distinctively Romulan tunic. He entered into view, the light gently illuminating his skin. "It is agreeable to be in the presence of Starfleet Officers once more," the Vulcan man announced as he approached.

"Administrator Sakkath?" Doctor Ilkun questioned.

He gave a crisp nod in reply, "Indeed, Doctor."

Having released the restraints from his comrades Nathan Hawkins studied the Administrator carefully, given his background with Starfleet Intelligence Sakkath was well practiced in playing people leaving the Commander feeling wary: "Now you have us here, what next? News of our abduction won't stay quiet for long, even if your intentions were justified."

Marner looked at the Administrator. "Thank you for your condolences." rubbing his wrists where the restrainers were on. "If there is anything we can do to help forestall anymore deaths by all means tell us what is going on?"

The Vulcan Administrator placed his hands behind his back and observed the Starfleet Officers carefully, "That is the question of the day, Doctor." He looked at the Medical officer then over to the Operations Manager, "The events of today have not gone unnoticed by the Romulan hierarchy in more ways than you could imagine. They are calling for war and only Ni'Var has prevented such an atrocity from occuring as of yet; however, I may be losing this battle. I must admit to being at a loss as to why you and your ship have come here, but I accept the answer that your Admiral Luzol provided me earlier today. Admiral Coulson received a message from me indicating that I was in jeopardy; nevertheless, I never sent such a message to he nor to the Federation. I would therefore determine that this indicates my cover as a member of Starfleet Intelligence has been compromised or is in danger of such a fate. If that were to occur then my mission would have been a failure."

"It seems like a good determination. You have been set up. So now what? Maybe find out who tipped the others off?" Cyrus remarked.

"I would theorize we already have that answer, Lieutenant," Sakkath answered in monotone. "Praetor Tei would be the most logical source of the transmission. As I am Proconsul of the Romulan Senate I am second to her in the Romulan hierarchy. I am, however, not likely to blindly follow her will as many of the others. Thus, an effort to discredit me in the eyes of the remainder of the Romulan Senate is a logical tactic for her to employ, one who is not as 'Federation Friendly' as I."

Cyrus gave a nod at his explanation "You certainly are in a very difficult position, Sir." then turned to looked at the others. He wasn't in command of this whole situation, and wondered just what else can be done. A thought did flash in his mind. "Are you needing us to help change the governmental status and make it to where it truly is a unified government instead of martial law?" Cyrus asked turning his attention back to Sakkath.

Hawkins went to remind Marner that was outside their powers when Sakkath responded.

"What we are most in need of is Admiral Coulson to be found and returned to the Federation," Sakkath answered, possibly surprising them. "The Admiral launching this investigation into my safety has increased security here on Ni'Var and has placed the Praetor on edge. You must return him to Federation territory before the situation degrades further."

Perhaps it was because he was still preoccupied with Chire's wellbeing or understanding how close to assassination they were Blake was failing to grasp the importance of Sakkath's situation. "If you believe the Praetor will move against you, wouldn't it be safer on the Enterprise?"

"I may be; however, you and the citizens of Ni'Var would not. I will take responsibility for my decisions, as Admiral Coulson must take responsibility for his own. Please, for the sake of both our governments, find and extract him," the Administrator requested firmly. "T'Han will work to return you to your vessel."

"Thank you Administrator," Hawkins replied. "We're do everything possible to find and retrieve Coulson. He is after all our responsibility."

"Indeed he is, Commander, as he was once mine," the Vulcan Administrator answered firmly. "And, as I know him so well, I will offer you this piece of advice: do not let him treat this as a game. I will do what I must to protect Ni'Var and if he gets in the way of that it would be to his detriment."

"I understand, hopefully it won't come to that," Hawkins nodded hoping they could uphold this promise before harm came to Coulson or the population of Ni'Var.

Cyrus looked at the others feeling a cold chill go over him once more, shuddering slightly. He will be asking about Coulson later on, who this man was and why was there trouble being caused. Cyrus maybe in medical but he still needed to know how to prepare things in case of, injuries and other health details. Maybe even something to render someone unconscious if needed.

The Administrator turned and shared the traditional Vulcan salute instead of the Romulan one, "Peace and long life."

After the Administrator left the cavern, T'Han looked at her compatriot. With a slight nod the Romulan walked to a side of the room and started to go through storage containers, "We are going to have to get you to one of the Transporter Centers if you are to leave this place. We cannot directly contact your vessel without drawing the attention of the Tal'Shiar so we must be careful as not to risk your own safety."

Another of the Romulans entered and approached T'Han. He whispered into her ear and T'Han stepped back, impacted by what was said. She motioned toward the other who started handing out robes to the prisoners. "Your Admiral has been seen at the central security station demanding your release. It has drawn attention and locked down the main spaceport. We have to get you to safety immediately as I believe that the Praetor may make her move soon."

"Hardly surprising," Hawkins remarked wrapping the robe around himself: "I'd do the same in his position, the distraction could serve Praetor well."

Cyrus accepted one of the robes sliding it over his clothing, adjusting it to where it fit better. "Where will be heading? And.." he looked over towards Chire, "Commander Chire, Can you handle being underneath a robe? If not we are going to have to think of something else." he was worried about how she would feel having her wings hindered and in some aspect confined.

"Yes sir, fabric does not bother me." There would be no need to take flight again because that would mean she was running. She was not powerful enough to lift another person.

"It won't be for very long," Dylan tried to assure her accepting his own robe. "We're be back on the ship in no time."

"It's fine," she mumbled feeling as if she didn't deserve any comforting from Dylan since she'd just tried to get him killed. She slipped the robe on, though it did feel weird on her wings it was not too uncomfortable.

Marner watched as Dylan worked to persuade Chire about covering her wings.

The Vulcan V'Shar Agent turned, "Let's get moving."

 

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