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Kressari System: Federation Frontier

Stardate: 53390.8

Legate Varak grinned from the commander's chair on the dark bridge of his flagship. He had finally grown used to the rudimentary controls of this modified cruiser. Even though her systems were old, she was still extremely dangerous. Two years ago, he could never have believed that the weapons that would lift Cardassia from the shame of defeat would be recovered from a junk yard, but that is exactly what happened. Destroying those starships along the border was the easiest fight of his career. Not even a mighty Pershing Class battlestarship could stand against them. His only regret was that it wasn't Tigranian's vessel reduced to a fleeing hulk. However, he was sure he would soon get the chance to wipe the smug arrogance off that human's face. They were now at high warp racing straight into the heart of his most hated enemy. The capital of the Federation would be at his mercy.

"Sir," Commander Sejed, his first officer, said from a console behind him. "We are in range of Betazed, Gamma Ceti, and Benzar. After we have destroyed those planets, we will be in position to hit Vulcan and Bolius before proceeding to the Sol System."

"No," Varak said gritting his teeth. "We continue straight to Earth."

"Sir!" Sejed said walking out from behind his grey metal control console. His wide necked uniform showcased the neck ridges puffing out in indignation. "If we want to bring the Federation to its knees, we must neutralize their outlaying systems first."

"I don't want their outlaying systems neutralized!" Varak said rising to his feet. The giant Cardassian State legate badge on his left breast glinted underneath the dim overhead lights. "I want to break the Federation apart with fear. Divide them against themselves into warring factions that will never stand united again. I want to humiliate them, degrade them. I want them to know that even in the center of their peace-loving, utopian paradise, they are not safe from our vengeance. I want them to bow their heads and beg for their lives.

I will not give them the chance to unite and meet us lightyears away from their core. I will move straight to their capital and raze it to ashes. Just like they did to us, Sejed."

"We will not arrive in range of Earth for more than two days, Sir. They could assemble an entire fleet at Earth by then."

"All the better," Varak said. "Instead of piecemeal destruction, we will obliterate Starfleet in one mighty blow and then begin the elimination of Earth's population. With no ruling government, the smaller systems will have no choice but to surrender one by one. Then, we will return to Cardassia Prime, hang that traitor Garak from the ramparts of the Imperial Plaza, and reunify our country."

"Sir," a lieutenant said from another control panel on the far side of the bridge. "We're receiving another directive from Premier Harok to immediately return to Cardassian State Space. He says, if we do not, we will be destroyed."

Varak laughed out loud.

"That old fool can't stop us. Every officer who is even remotely competent is in this fleet."

"What if the Romulans decide to intervene against us? The Cataclysm Device is their technology. They might be able to stop it." Sejed asked.

"If they knew how to stop it, then their fleet would be equipped with them. Besides, we are giving the Romulans exactly what they want. We destroy the Federation and then we split its territory and resources right down the middle: half for the Romulans and half for the New Cardassian Empire. I'll even allow them to take all the Klingon territory desire, as long as we receive substantial reparations for the resources the brow-ridged animals took from us."

"You will allow them, Sir?" Sejed asked confused. The commander wasn't used to dealing with the Romulans on such equal terms.

"Of course, my friend. Harok has proven himself a fool and far too weak to lead our people. Once the proper purges of the Republic puppet government have been completed, I fully intend to re-install the Central Command to its rightful place at the head of our people. Worry not," he said walking up to Sejed and placing a grey hand on his shoulder. "I will not forget who helped make this glorious victory for our people possible. Soon, a Legate's badge like this will be on your uniform as well.

We'll need good men in the new order. Already, too many Cardassians have been corrupted by the disgusting decadences of democracy. We: both you and I, will bring them back."

Sejed grinned and nodded at his legate.

"Stay on course for Earth, maximum warp," Varak said lowering himself back into his seat.

"Yes, Sir," Sejed said filled with a renewed sense of purpose.

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