Kohr felt an odd sense of relief ripple through him as he emerged from the turbolift onto the Viking‘s bridge. With the unusual goings-on so fresh in his mind the seeming-normalcy of the scene before him was a salve to his nerves. The Klingon made his way to the captain’s chair and the familiar shape of Lieutenant Yorba. The man gave him a welcome half-smile and stood, offering him the seat instead. Nodding his approval, Kohr sat formally, palms on his thighs.
“Report,” came his baritone growl, staring past the lieutenant to the curve of alien ship peeking in from the view screen.
Kohr did not miss the other man’s shrug from the corner of his gaze. “Nothing much to report, sir. The power transfer is complete and everything appears to be in order. The Viking is still holding position ten thousand kilometers from her starboard bow. From what our sensors have been able to show, the transfer barely tickled their consumption requirements. That’s… about it, sir.”
Yorba leaned in, his voice keyed to a more conspiratorial tone. “Personally, sir, I can’t say as I like it. A ship we can’t properly scan, I mean. For all we know they’ve got ten tons of ultridium explosives in their cargo hold, or half a million starving kittens.”
The Klingon raised a brow.
“All I’m trying to say, sir,” he continued, holding up a hand defensively, “is that I’m concerned. If this were a Ferengi freighter in distress and you couldn’t detect what was in their hold…”
Yorba let the thought trail off as he straightened. Kohr’s jaw worked as he tried very hard not to clench his jaw hard enough to crack. He took a slow, steadying breath. How many of those had he needed to remain calm since they detected the alien vessel’s signal.
“Understood,” was all Kohr could bring himself to say. Yorba’s concerns, however, echoed much of what he had already considered himself. While the Viking was perfectly capable of rendering assistance to most any vessel in distress, this had been anything but standard. Much of the dealings with Hab’rabi and his vessel had been conducted—what was the human expression?—by the seat of their pants, and that did not sit well with the Klingon in the least.
While his post to the Viking had originally been an order from Starfleet Command, Kohr had grown fond of the ship’s operation style and command crew. Rende was personally a calm and easy-going individual, but she had also impressed him with her commanding military presence and leadership. It was not the hard-nosed, do-or-die way of a Klingon captain, certainly; it was an assertive and disciplined manner that allowed Kohr to know exactly where he stood at any given time. That kind of natural leadership was rare but projected a strong sense of confidence into every aspect of the Viking‘s operations. It was something he had come to count on.
That trust, however, had started to fray at the edges.
“Bridge to Engineering,” he growled, pushing his thoughts to the side. He would deal with them later.
“Engineering,” came the reply. “Paulson here. What can I do for you, Commander?“
“We are preparing to take the alien vessel in-tow. Do you anticipate any complications?”
Kohr waited as patiently as he was able while the engineer considered his request. That in and of itself made him tense. He had known even before asking that there would be some difficulty in tractoring a substantially-larger vessel anywhere, and the Viking was already on the edge of Federation space. The thick silence humming through the comm system only confirmed some of his suspicions.
A moment later, a soft sigh. “We’ll have to reroute power from our auxiliary systems to boost the flow to the graviton emitters; that should give us a wide enough beam for a firm grip. It’ll take us a few minutes to reconfigure our plasma regulation to the injectors in order to extend our warp field to encompass the vessel. I’m relatively confident that we can manage Warp Three… at least, until we see how things shake out.“
“Understood. Make the necessary adjustments and signal when we can be underway.” Kohr leaned forward, planting his elbows on his knees and steepling his fingers before him. “Helm, set a course for Starbase One-Eight-Five.”
Kohr nodded. At least something was going as-expected. Frowning, he turned his attention to the display at his elbow and tapped the terminal to activate the localized comm system. =^=Kohr to Forgrave. Has Lieutenant Darz joined you yet?=^=
As he spoke, his fingers worked independently in tandem with his unconscious mind as the Klingon began drafting a preliminary report to Starfleet. While Lieutenant Sigmundsson might have felt a message to Starfleet Intelligence was no longer necessary, Kohr was certain that its Medical and Science divisions would be most intrigued by their discovery.
—Kohr, Executive Officer—
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