AOH :: TREK-072.TXT|
TNG: "For The Honor Of The Empire" 5
From: email@example.com (Peter Brown)
Subject: "For the Honor of the Empire"
Date: 8 Apr 92 00:22:18 GMT
Organization: Purdue University Computing Center
CHAPTER FIVE: "For the Honor of the Empire."
[Open to the Battle Bridge of the _Enterprise_.]
Troi: "Captain, he is lying. He does not want to parley with us."
Riker: "Surely they know they outmatch us. What is the point?"
Worf: "Men without honor often enjoy *toying* with their prey."
Troi: "But I sense that it is more than just that. Valasian seems to
care little about his *own* men."
Picard: "I understand Counselor, I am sensing the same thing. Still,
there must be a peacable solution to all of this. I will not
allow the deaths of crew members simply be precursors to the
deaths of thousands, if not millions of others. [frown] Data,
have you discovered anything about their technology?"
Data: "Yes, Captain. The ship configuration appears to be designed
around the concept of psychological warfare. The immense size
and relatively primitive technology suggest that psychological
effects are more important than starship effiecency. It also
appears that the primary offensive weapon of the Imperial
warships is their fighters."
Worf: "My sensors indicate that the foreward and flank sections of
the vessels are heavily armoured, but their drive section
is not armoured at all."
Data: "The configuration also suggests that phaser and photon
weapons would do little damage to the ship if struck from
the front or side. However, their fire control and sensor
equipment is is easily accessable and poorly shielded or
Riker: "Their Achille's heel."
Data: "Yes, Commander. Their control systems seem to favor
independent fire from their laser batteries and not from
a central command. However, their control equipment is
housed in a single location, easily targetable by our
phasers and photon torpedoes."
Picard: "Number One, take Deanna with you to Shuttle bay two and
prepare to leave. We will keep contact with you through
your communicators, and will beam you off at the first
sign of trouble."
Riker:[nervously] "Yes, Captain."
Picard: "Good luck Deanna, Will."
Riker: "Thank you sir. Deanna?"
[Riker and Troi leave the Battle Bridge into a turbolift.]
Picard: "Lieutenant, lock all weapons systems on the control towers
of all three cruisers. I hope that we will not have to use
Worf:[look of grim satisfaction] "Aye sir."
[Fade to the Shuttle bay on the _Devastator_. Technicians bustle about,
tending to the various tasks, 'droids scurry around as well. In the center
of the bay, which looks like a huge swimming pool, an Imperial Tri-Wing
Shuttlecraft (from Return of the Jedi) is being prepped, with
its wings locked in the vertical position. Tarkin enters the bay, and is
escorted to the shuttle.]
Tarkin: "Is the shuttle preppeed and ready for my immediate departure?"
Techie: "Yes Commander. All systems are in perfect working order."
Tarkin: "Very good. Inform Admiral Valasian that I shall leave
Techie: "Yes, Commander Tarkin."
[Tarkin climbs into the Shuttle. Exterior shot: Lights flash and klaxons
wail as the Shuttle lowers out of the Bay, poking through the blue force
field that holds the atmosphere in. Once outside the Bay, the Shuttle's
wings fold down for flight. It's aft thrusters propelling it toward
[Cut to the _Enterprise_ turbolift. Riker and Troi are in it.]
Riker: "Shuttlebay Two."
[Whirring noise as the turbolift begins to move.]
Troi: "I sense your fear, Will. I feel it too."
Riker: "I just hope the Captain's plan works, or we won't be the
only ones who might die."
[Deanna turns to Will and embraces him warmly.]
Troi: "I'm sure that it will all turn out alright. We have made
it through worse together."
Riker:[smiles] "I know, Deanna. I know."
[The Turbolift comes to a stop, the two release and enter the bay.
Geordi is there with Barclay, apparently prepping the shuttle. You can
see the silhoettes of the empty TIE fighters through the force field.]
Geordi: "Well, Commander, the shuttlecraft is ready. We have added
a few things to it, mainly a concealed compartment with two
hand phasers in it - just in case. It's shielded and should
be protected from their scans."
Riker: "Thanks, Geordi."
Barclay: "G-good luck, De-deanna, Commander."
Troi: "Thanks, Reg." [She gives him a reassuring smile.]
[Riker touches his communicator.]
Riker: "Riker to Battle Bridge. We are ready to depart."
Intercom: [Picard] "Acknowledged, Number One. You may proceed, and, Will
and Deanna. The best of luck to the both of you. I hope we
will not need it."
Riker: "Thank you, Captain. Riker Out."
[Riker gestures politely to the shuttle and smiles at Deanna, who returns the
smile and climbs into the shuttle. Riker winks at Geordi and Reg, and then
climbs into the shuttle, the hatch closing behind him. Once sitting down,
he begins the power-up sequence. Troi settles down in a passenger chair,
clasping her nervous hands in her lap. Riker gives her a reassuring glance,
his eyes sparkling.]
Riker: "Shuttlecraft One ready for launch."
Intercom:[Geordi] "Shuttlecraft One, you may leave when ready. We'll keep
dinner warm, Commander."
Riker: "Acknowledged, I hope it's Gok."
[Troi makes a "ooh, that's gross!" face.]
[Riker hits the thruster controls and the shuttlecraft glides gently out
of the bay, and begins its journey to the _Devastator_. Cut to exterior
shot. The shuttles pass each other midway. The _Enterprise_ shuttle
continues on toward the Imperial Star Destroyer. Cut to interior of
Riker: "Federation shuttlecraft to _Devastator_. We request
permission to dock."
Intercom:[cold, calculated voice] "Federation craft. Proceed to the
ventral docking bay. Any course deviation will be interpretted
as a hostile act, and shall be dealt with accordingly."
Riker: "Acknowledged. [Cuts the communication and turns to Deanna]
Not very friendly."
Deanna: [shivers] "I don't like this a bit, Will. We are heading into
[Riker nods slowly, and returns to piloting the craft.]
[Switch to interior of the _Devastator_'s docking bay. There are assembled
approxiamately one hundred white armoured Stormtroopers. The force is
divided in half, with an alley between them.
The shuttlecraft slowly comes to a stop, then moves vertically into the
bay, and then laterally over to a solid steel platform. We hear:
"Warning! Warning! Rebel Shuttlecraft now entering Docking Bay!".
The shuttle comes to a stop. Cut to interior of shuttle.]
Riker:[looks toward Deanna] "You sense anything."
Troi: "Yes, but it is hard to filter out. There is great animosity
out there, but at the same time great confusion, about what
I am not sure."
Riker: "Shall we, then?"
[Riker and Troi get out of the shuttle craft onto the cold polished steel. The
Imperial March Theme plays in the Background. The Stormtroopers are standing
at attention, each armed with a blaster, in formation on either side of the
two, leaving an alley approximately four meters wide. At the end of the
alley stands a several offical looking men in dark grey uniforms. Valasian
and Hadrian are among them. Riker gives a quick glance at Deanna, who takes
a breath and gives him a forced nod of assurance back. The two walk down the
alley toward the uniformed men, and the Stormtroopers, in proper Prussian
fashion, turn crisply to face the Federation Representatives. When they
approach, the stern faced officers regard them silently, obviously waiting
for Riker to make the first move.]
Riker: "Greetings. I am Commander William Riker of Earth. This
is Lieutenant Commander Deanna Troi of Betazed."
Valasian:[with a coldness that could snap steel] "Greetings, Commander.
I am Admiral Rolf Valasian, and this is my Assistant aboard
the _Devastator_, Lieutenant Hadrian. I am the Representative
of the Emperor of the Galactic Empire."
Riker: "I am honored, Admiral. Shall we get down to business?"
Valasian:[Smiles warmly] "Why, of course, Commander. [Smile snaps to a
cold, thin line on his chisled face.] Guards! Take these
Rebel Scum to the Detention Block! See to it that no *undue*
harm comes to them. Lord Vader will enjoy *interrogating*
whatever is left of them when we return!"
[Break to an exterior shot of the Imperial Tri-Wing. The shuttle manuevers
up to the _Enterprise_. Cut to the interior of the shuttle, with Tarkin
Intercom: [Worf] "Imperial Shuttlecraft. Cut your engines and drop your
shields. You will be beamed aboard presently. _Enterprise_
[Tarkin raises an eyebrow, about to say something, but the channel has already
closed. Cut to exterior view. Shuttle slows to a halt. _Enterprise_
tractor beam attaches to it. Cut to transporter room. O'Brien, Worf, a
Security Team, and Picard are waiting. Tarkin materializes on the pad.]
[Worf bites his lip, then draws a phaser and points it at Tarkin. Tarkin
realizes this, and raises his left arm as his right allows his weapons
belt to drop to the floor.]
Picard: "Welcome to the _Enterprise_, Commander."
Tarkin:[recovers his composure] "Thank you. I am Commander Erich Tarkin,
Captain of the Imperial Star Destroyer, _Devastator_. Before
we continue, Captain, I demand to make sure my men are
being well treated."
Picard: "You can rest assured, Commmander, that your men are fine.
But I understand your concern and desire to see them
yourselves. If you would come with me."
[Tarkin looks at Picard and Worf with meticulous scrutiny. He appears
satisfied after a pause, and steps down off the pad. He glances a second
at Picard, who is unarmed, and lingers one on Worf, who straightens up.]
Tarkin: "Very well, let us proceed."
Picard:[turns to a security guard] "Stay here, we may need you again."
[The guard nods, and Picard and Tarkin leave the Transporter Room, Worf
following close behind, phaser still drawn.]
Tarkin:[after several seconds of silence. His face is expressionless.]
"This is not a military vessel, is it, Captain?"
Picard:[frowns] "No, Commander, it is not."
Tarkin: "Your mission then, if I may be so bold?"
Picard: "The _Enterprise_ is an exploration cruiser."
Tarkin: "I see. Then you have civilians on board."
Picard:[still stern] "Yes, Commander."
Tarkin: "And I am sure several were killed in the exchange."
Picard: "Thirty-seven were killed, Commander. More than half were
Tarkin:[still expressionless] "A pity, Captain."
[They reach a turbolift and enter it. Tarkin remains silent until they
approach the Brig. Tarkin and Picard enter the room and approach the
cell where the pilots are being held. They seem to be in relatively good
cheer. Rilkin steps to the door. Picard and Worf wait at outside door,
ushering the guards out.]
Tarkin:[hushed] "Captain Rilkin, how are the others."
Rilkin: "Wha - fine. The Rebels have given us adequate housing and
attention, but wh-"
Tarkin:[cutting Rilkin off] "Have they punished or tortured you in any way?"
Rilkin: "Jeoriss and Handen were shot with a stun weapon when they
attempted to overpower a Rebel, but they are fine now. What
is going on? Were you captured?"
Tarkin:[shakes his head] "No. I convinced Admiral Valasian to parley
with these people. I believe we can come to an agreement."
Rilkin:[in shock] "What!?! Parley with the Rebels? That is mad!"
Tarkin:[forcefully] "Captain! Isn't it obvious that these people are not
the Rebels! This technology is alien to us, they have power
effiency only dreamed of by Imperial Engineers. This Federation
is not part of the Rebel Alliance, although I have little doubt
that they would support them if ever they met."
Rilkin: "You Idiot! How do we know that they haven't?"
Tarkin: "What would they gain by attacking a lone squadron far from the
rest of the Main Fleet. They would lose their advantage if they
tried. No Captain, these people are not the Rebels, but another
empire. One that I believe is not in the Empire's best interests
to go to war with - yet."
Rilkin: "You are a fool and a coward, Tarkin! These people are nothing!
The Empire will crush them! *We* will crush them!"
Tarkin: "No, Rilkin. We would certainty not. There would be devastation
of a magnitude that would completely drain the military strength
of the Empire. Worlds would rebel and we would not be able to
react in time. No, it is time for our Empire to mature. I will
not start this war. The Emperor will have to himself."
Rilkin: "The Emperor will have you killed for treason."
Tarkin:[raises an eyebrow] "So be it."
[Tarkin turns around and walks over to Picard.]
Tarkin: "Captain, we must talk. There is not much time."
[Picard's serious frown is softened by a confused and concerned look at that
statement. Cut to _Devastator_'s Detention Block. Riker and Troi are
sitting in a polished steel cell. Both still wear their insignias. The
doors slide open with a loud hiss, and in walk two Stormtroopers
accompanying Admiral Valasian.]
Valasian: "And how are you two enjoying your stay here, hmm?"
Riker: "Release us! We are not the Rebels you seek! We came to discuss
a peaceful resolution to this!"
Valasian: "Yes, I know that you are not the Rebels. They have more backbone
than you do. Still, your ship is quite impressive. Perhaps you
would care to tell me about it."
Riker: "*Perhaps* we would care not to."
Valasian: "You will not have much choice."
Riker: "We will resist you."
Valasian:[a cruel smile forms on his face] "I was rather *hoping* you would
say that, Commander. [Harsh] Fengiss! Bring the devices..."
[Cut back to _Enterprise_, Picard's Ready Room. Tarkin is sitting in one
of the chairs in front of Picard's desk. Worf is standing behind him,
near the door, with his phaser in his holster. Picard is standing at
the ubiquitious foodslot.]
Picard: "On Earth, we have a drink called "tea", made from the brewing
of certain leaves. I am quite taken to it. Would you care
for some Commander?"
Tarkin:[carefully] "Yes, that would be fine, Captain."
Picard:[forcing a pleasant smile. It is obvious that it is forced.]
Worf:[startled. His face grimaces at the thought of *tea*] "No...thank
Picard: "Two Earl Grey. Eighty-five degrees."
[Two glass tea cups of piping hot Earl Grey tea materialize inside the
slot. Tarkin looks on in wonder, never having seen such a device. Picard
removes the two cups and hands one to Tarkin. Picard sits down, tugs at
his jersey, and takes a sip of tea. Tarkin sips his hesistently.]
Tarkin: "Intriguing. We have something very similar, we call it "Mekla",
also from brewing leaves."
Picard:[face stern] "We are not what you had expected, are we Commander?"
Tarkin:[Looks down, sighes] "No, Captain Picard, you are not. We had assumed
that your outpost was a stronghold for a group of Rebels against
the Empire. I am deeply sorry for what happened."
Picard:[serious face] "What *did* happen, Commander? Our reports are
sketchy, at best."
Tarkin: "We picked up your outpost on our sensors, and we investigated.
The power levels on the outpost were very high, high enough to
be a military base. The screen and EM frequencies were all
wrong, and as Second in Command I began to feel that this was
not a rebel base at all, rather another Empire's outpost.
Before we could investigate further, Admiral Valasian gave the
order to fire on the outpost. He is impetuous, ambitious, and
has frequently made impulsive decisions. To him, it was an
obvious rebel ruse. Even after the base had sustained incredible
damage from our weapons, and had even fired back with its phased
light weapon, Valasian still could not accept it as another
Worf: "You Admiral seems to have little honor, Commander."
[Picard shoots a concerned look at Worf. He appears to be about to say
something as Tarkin turns his head slightly.]
Tarkin: "Yes, Lieutenant. He has little honor. At times I believe he
has no honor."
Picard:[sighes] "Commander. I want to believe you. It would make it so
much easier to resolve this conflict, but you must understand th-"
Tarkin: "But I do understand, Captain. I understand the need for trust
in this matter. I have told you what had happened. But
remember, I am a Commander in the Emperor's Navy. I do not always
agree with his decisions, but I am loyal to him. I believe that
this conflict should end, peacefully if possible."
Picard: "But Valasian..."
Tarkin: "...could care less. Captain, I would be lying to you if I
truly believed I would make it back to my ship alive. I do not
doubt your intentions. Your ship is not designed for warfare,
and you are not a warrior. Valasian, however, would not think
twice about destroying this ship, with myself and the pilots
Picard:[astonished] "But surely, the Command crew on your ships would not let
him do that..."
Tarkin:[sighes] "Of that I am not so certain. I only know that you must try
to get your people back now. Lieutenant Hadrian is a good man,
Captain Picard, he will protect your people as long as he can.
Valasian will want to know the weaknesses and strengths of this
starship, and he will enjoy getting that information."
Picard:[astonished whisper] "Will and Deanna..."
[Picard and Worf look at one another in surprise and fear, their eyes
widening. Picard stands up, but Tarkin remains sitting, staring idlely
out the window at the behemoths outside.]
Tarkin: "Captain. Target the _Devastator_'s control pylons on either
side of the bridge. That will momentarily cut power to the
entire vessel without hurting any of its crew. It should give
you the time necessary to rescue your people."
[Picard nods to Worf, who rushes into the Battle Bridge. Picard turns nad
regards Tarkin. He begins to say something, but Tarkin cuts him off.]
Tarkin: "Captain, I forfeit my commission for this, and my life as well
once we return to Headquarters. But I will not allow a senseless
war develop because of Valasian's incompetence. I would not
want that on my conscience. Would you?"
Picard:[dramatic pause] "No, Commander Tarkin, I most certainly would not.
[Picard leaves the Ready Room. Hold on Tarkin for a few seconds. He looks
very tired. Cut to the Detention Center of the _Devastator_. Valasian
is standing by a moveable cart with all sorts of cruel instruments on it.
Next to him, hovering a meter and a half in the air is a black globe with
an assortment of spidery injection needles. It is making that warbling
Valasian: "Now then, shall we start with you, my pretty woman?"
Riker: "Stay away from her!"
Valasian: "I will if you tell me what I wish to know! My patience is
Riker:[growling] "If you so much as lay a finger on her --"
Valasian:[to the Stormtroopers] "Restrain him!"
[One Stormtrooper snickers deeply as he thrusts the butt of his blaster into
Riker's abdomen, knocking the air out of him. The other hits Will in the
face with his blaster, sending his head snapping back into the steel
wall, blood spraying from his smashed nose. Chortling, they bind his hands
and feet with metallic binders.]
Valasian: "Never mind him, pretty thing, you have enough to worry about..."
[Valasian smiles wickedly as the humming glode moves in on Deanna, its
spidery limbs searching out her soft flesh. Deanna panics and draws her
hands up to her breast, surreptiously activating her communicator. She
screams as loudly as she possibly can as Valasian comes at her. Cut to
Battle Bridge on the _Enterprise_.]
Worf: "Sir, incoming message from the Counselor...[Worfs eyes ignite]
She is screaming sir!"
Picard:[Spins, glances up as his jaw drops] "Mister O'Brien, lock onto
Counselor Troi and Commander Riker and beam them out back as
soon as the Imperial warship's shields drop!"
Intercom:[O'Brien] " Sir, I cannot lock onto them, there are too many people
in the are--"
Picard:[roaring] "Beam them all aboard, damn it!"
Intercom:[O'Brien] "Y-Yes sir!"
[Intense theme music build-up]
Worf: "Phaser's targeted on the _Devastator_'s power arrays. Photon
torpedoes targeted for its escorts, dispersal pattern Beta."
[Camera Close-up on Picard's Right side, you know, so we can see Worf.]
Picard: "Fire, Lieutenant!"
[Cut to Commercial <don't you just hate these!>]
[A blue Ford pickup driving down a dusty road in picturesque Midwest Flatland
country. In it we see a Dad and Son in typical flannel clothing.]
Son: "Dad, can I ask you a question?"
Dad: "Sure, Billy, what's on your mind?"
Son: "Well, have you ever had that 'not-so-fresh' feeling?"
[ Boom-Boom-Boom sound of the Energizer Bunny as it crosses the dashboard in
front of the bewildered pair.
Narrator: "Still going....
<Crash> [We see the pickup wrapped around a cow that is just now realizing
that something has happened. Bunny tumbles out of the wreck, but as the
camera zooms in on it, we realize that it no longer wears the Energizer logo,
rather the Timex logo.]
Timex Narrator: "Takes a licking and keeps on ticking. Timex."
(A special thanks to Scott Seamark for that Commerical. ;)
Sigh. I don't know, should I finish this?
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