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Where you go, I will go

Posted on Thu Jul 25th, 2013 @ 3:48am by Petty Officer 1st Class Vartog & Civilian Haqtaj Matlh

Mission: Part of the Team
Location: Chief Security Officer's office

Vartog pushed open the door without bothering to sound the chime. He was Klingon and Klingons didn’t bother with such formalities. Had it have been a Starfleet officer on the other side of the door, he would have observed the courtesies but it was Madame Haqtaj. She was now Lieutenant Haqtaj but, to him, she was still the Klingon ambassador aboard DS12 and he was still her aide de camp.

“Madame,” he said without preamble, “I have heard below decks that the Federation is re-commissioning an abandoned Romulan facility in the Raeyan Corridor. They are calling for volunteers to be transferred to the new facility.”

Haqtaj had been caught in a moment of reflection, looking at her now almost bare office. It was a poor habit, one her uncle was prone to but she had always been busy enough to avoid. She tried to hide her lapse by overt gruffness.

"Yes," she barked, "I am well aware. The High Council, in its ineffable wisdom has ordered me to transfer."

“It would place you closer to our people. You can also better serve House Matlh there. Out here you are too far away to have any great influence over events in the Empire. With your uncle even further away, that places House Matlh at a distinct disadvantage in Imperial politics.”

Haqtaj turned on him and snarled, letting out the frustration and anger that she had been bottling for days, "Oh, so you agree with them then? Stick me on some radioactive Romulan wreck and wait for me to die in obscurity, eh? Can't wait to get me out of your precious station?"

“Where you go, I will go. I will lodge a request for transfer immediately.”

Haqtaj stopped short, at a loss for words. She tried to say something a few times but nothing came out. Finally she managed to compose herself.

"Since I have been on this station I have had to fight for every inch of recognition; every tiny victory, my very life. I have been badgered, ignored, dismissed, hated and despised. Even you, who have been with me and fought unquestioningly at my side during incursions of Borg, 8472, and parasites, even you left for your own purposes. Now I see that there is in you more honour and loyalty than I have found in the best of the Captains who served under me."

She straightened to her full height and looked down at him, "However, I will not have you transfer as my aide. I will not have you as a servant to House Matlh."

She placed her hands on his shoulders, "But I would welcome you to serve next to me as my friend."

“No,” Vartog replied without hesitation. “I am Starfleet and I will remain Starfleet. I swore an oath to this uniform and I will respect that oath. Starfleet offered me a position which utilized my skills where the Empire dismissed them as unworthy of a warrior. It is why I ‘left you’. Yes, I had my own purposes: I wanted to see if the Empire had changed. It had not.”

Haqtaj smiled, "Were a thousand years to pass, our traditions would not. For all that they hold back, they give so much more in support and structure. My father Matlh was also sneered at for his profession. Had it not been for the influence of my mother, I believe he would still be an unrecognized medic in a rural town."

“I am no-one’s servant. I will serve you as I would serve any other commanding officer.”

"And I do not seek your servitude, though there is no doubt that House Matlh owes you a debt for your service to it and myself."

“Let me correct that: I will serve you if you are my Commanding Officer. Not House Matlh but Madame Haqtaj. I will gladly fight at your side because I respect you. You have shown courage and you have shown fortitude. More than that, you have shown that you understand what honour truly is, not the sterile thing it has become in the Empire.”

Haqtaj finally laughed, "By the Dead Gods, listen to us. We exchange words like Federation. There is drinking and celebrating that could be done. Let the formalities be dealt with later. We will journey to DS14 and find what honour and friendship is to be had."

Vartog stood erect. He pulled his hand back and, in very un-Starfleet fashion, punched Haqtaj on the shoulder. Then he grinned broadly.


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