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Wheels within wheels

Posted on Tue Jun 19th, 2012 @ 8:51am by Legate Vadrek

Mission: Purgatory's Shadow. Season 2 Episode 7
Location: Deck 14

OOC: Woohoo! Post insterted, thanks. I decided to start off by playing hardball - we'll see if this Legate can win some military respect! ;D

Macet stood upright, arms neatly folded, against the back wall of the bridge. He was aboard the Keldor-class Koranak. He was very irritable.

Macet had been aboard many Keldor-class ships, most of them during the war. He had never commanded his own vessel, his years of experience too few to justify such a great achievement then, but he nevertheless felt a connection to this class. Stepping aboard a Keldor meant stepping aboard nostalgia - a reminder of a time when Macet was younger, and a reminder of a time when the world was a simpler place. Macet yearned for the days of a clear enemy, of an enemy that fought with tactics and martial skill - especially contrasted to the prospect of his new position in foreign service. Foreign service. The words, not a year ago, would have been spat out of Macet's mouth with a tinge of disgust.

Macet was prepared, of course, to exchange his naval tactics and phaser for the battle weapons of a politician - lies and deceit - but he certainly was not pleased to do so.

"Gul Lamar, Roark Nor is on-line."

Macet was shaken out of his thoughts by the young Garresh, and his report to the Koranak's commanding officer. Glancing at the viewscreen, the wheel-and-spoke shade of a Cardassian Nor-type space station was swapped for an interior scene. Macet inhaled deeply, and released his breath slowly. Moving away from the bulkhead, he turned to address Gul Lamar.

"There's still time for us to swap identities, Gul. The Obsidian Order has restored much of their proficiency in that area."

The Gul chuckled. "I'm afraid not, Demak. This honor has clearly fallen to you."

Macet had been a member of the Cardassian military long enough to know when it was time to acquiesce gracefully. Things were easier when I could just shoot them, he mused.

He had read the reports provided by Legate Vadrek: a tribute both to his race and to the well-known photographic Cardassian memory, Vadrek had been thorough and detailed throughout his writings. Those same thorough writings included details not only on the proceedings, but also on their physical locations within the station.

Pausing to recall from his memory thoughts of the last time his service brought him aboard a Nor class station, Macet looked around, taking in the familiar sights of Cardassian architecture in the room on the screen.

Vadrek's quarters

So, Macet Demak.... I wonder why he was chosen. He has a fine reputation, of course; as a soldier, not as a diplomat. His disdain for the diplomatic service is well recorded. I must be careful here: I see wheels turning within wheels and who's to say who has set them in motion.

Vadrek outside the field of the comms camera. He would have preferred to have met Demak in person but arrangements had been changed at the last moment. Vardek suspected that had been a deliberate move to put him off-balance from the outset. So be it, he thought. I can't do anything about that now.

He stood up straight and squared his shoulders then stepped in front of the camera. “Greetings, Glin Macet.”

Macet stood, perfectly centered on the screen. His hands clasped neatly at his front, Macet maintained eye contact with Legate Vadrek from the instant he came into view. Macet was a product of the old Cardassia - a Cardassia wherein the Central Command reigned supreme over all matters in life. Accordingly, Macet still held loyalty to the Central Command above all other bodies of Cardassian government, and it just so happened, coincidentally, that Legate Vadrek was a council member in one of those bodies.

"Legate," Macet spoke, nodding respectfully and breaking eye contact for the first time.

Despite Macet's loyalties, he still had a job to do - and this Legate was at this very moment negotiating for a beautiful piece of Cardassian engineering. Framing the question like only a man accustomed to battle plans could, he spoke.

"Are your negotiations proceeding correctly?"

Correctly, Vadrek thought. What a strange choice of words. “They are going forward,” he said. “The Klingon will present difficulties but I do not anticipate much trouble from Roark Nor's Vulcan commander. She is out of her depth and, in my opinion, unsuited to command of a station the size of this. Her second in command could yet prove problematic but I think we can isolate him. I trust though that you have been thoroughly briefed. All this is in my report.”

Macet began to pace making a deliberately slow and meandering time of circling back to face Vadrek. He resumed speaking mid-turn.

"Certainly, Legate. There was more than ample time for reading aboard Koranak. Time so ample, in fact, that I was able to update myself on the latest fleet reports from Central Command - what do you know of Discovery, Vadrek?"

No sooner had Macet finished saying the Legate's name, than he had finished his turn and locked eyes back on him.

"It seems strange for Starfleet to send a vessel devoid of senior staff, to a starbase whose senior staff are rather preoccupied in negotiation. You may not be able to continue relying on Vulcan incompetence."

Vadrek did not flinch from the gaze. “On the other hand, we might be able to rely on Starfleet's eyes being elsewhere while we plot our takeover.” Now he turned his face away, content that the eye contact was being broken on his terms. He inspected a tiny flake of paint on the bulkhead wall before continuing. “I have heard....” He turned back to face Macet. “....let us say rumours, that a mission to an abandoned science facility went badly amiss. Starfleet is keeping tight lipped but that is to be expected.”

"I too have heard...rumours. Nothing more. I am not aware that there is anything significant for us there. I suggest we confine ourselves to matters of importance."

Vadrek allowed himself a shrug. It did not concern him what Macet might, or might not, consider important. He could pursue this line of enquiry in his own time. “Meanwhile, one of their senior officers has gone missing. Officially she is on leave but that is merely – how do they put it? – a smokescreen.”

"I believe a Trill is involved but I know nothing more."

The response was too quick and delivered too readily. “Do you know anything of her disappearance?” Vadrek pressed.

"Do I have to make it an order, Legate," Macet queried stonily. "Confine yourself to matters relevant to the negotiations. Macet out."

So, there is something there. I wonder if the two incidents are linked? They do not appear to be but until I know what research was being carried out on the station then the notion can't be dismissed. I think it might be time to call in a few favours...."


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