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Subik IV: Klingon Empire

Stardate: 54524.2

"You've done amazing things here," Laria said walking along a stone path to the crest of a small hill overlooking the new colony. It was a warm, clear day. A pair of children ran up the grassy sides of the knob dragging a kite behind them. They laughed as they tried to get the paper diamond into the air. Behind them, fifty houses sat in a cleared meadow that only a year before had been wilderness. The jungle loomed only two hundred meters away, but a panoramic vista leading down to the winding Hrktar River was breathtaking. This was the new home of the Soldiers of Akarath.

"It was very hard work," Lady Lucretia smiled as she walked besides Laria. She was wrapped in an armored gown and her silver baldric of office glistened in the sunlight across her chest. "But it was work done by free men and women. I can't thank you enough for what you did to help us all."

"We didn't do much," Laria said chuckling.

"Yes you did," Lucretia replied as they approached the top of the hill. "You lit the spark and then kept the fires of liberty burning. Now, we are in control of our own lives."

Tigranian silently stood with his arm's crossed in front of him. He stared out over the new village and towards the river. He filled his lungs with Subik's warm breezes and, for a brief moment, truly felt the peace of this place.

"An imperial jenSa' honors us with his presence here," Lucretia said bringing him out of his trance.

"Nonsense," Tigranian replied. "I serve the people of the Klingon Empire, Governor," he grinned back while holding out his hand. They firmly grabbed each other's wrists in greeting. "And that includes you."

"I have to admit," she replied. "You did look quite majestic leading the parade on Qo'noS last month."

Laria laughed and Tigranian shook his head.

"It was the skill of the cameras. Not anything that I did. I spent the whole parade thinkgin my s'tarahk would buck me off right in the middle of Chancellor's Square."

"My apologies for not attending in person," Lucretia said. "The water reclamation units were giving us trouble and I had to oversee their repair. We now have 1,132 freed slaves from the Romulan Empire living here and all have different needs and different problems. If it's not one thing, it's another."

"Don't think twice about it," Tigranian said. "There's always next turn. Besides, you're a busy woman, Governor, and it shows. I'll be sure to speak of Suvik IV highly in my next report to Qo'noS."

"Thank you, General," she said with a slight bow of her head.

"How's Crestia doing?" Laria asked. "Daniel and I haven't spoken to her in months."

"Oh, the same spirit and discipline as always," Lucretia said laughing. "She received special permission to take two classes more per semester than the maximum. When I asked why, she just said 'Mother, I need to get back out there and start making a difference.' She just amazes me every day."

"She takes after you," Laria said with a grin.

"No," Lucretia replied. "To my everlasting shame, I only taught her to keep quiet and take care of herself. She's the one who decided to become a force for good."

"Forgive me, Lady Lucretia," Tigranian interjected, "but take a look around. You're doing plenty of good."

Lucretia laughed. Then, after a quiet pause, she finally asked a question that had been eating away at her ever since the Tigranians first arrived.

"Have you heard at all from Rellas since we last saw him?" she said softly.

Tigranian shook his head.

"No, but we know that he continues his fight. Every week, we get more reports of how he is crippling Romulus' resources. He didn't go back in vain."

"What of the Federation?" Lucretia added. "Is it true what they say in the news reports? Are they really going to pull out of the alliance and leave Cardassian Space? Are they really going to leave the Klingons, Cardassians, and Rellas' insurgents to fight the Romulans alone?"

"It's just rumor," Tigranian replied.

"For now…" Laria added with concern.

"How can they even consider such a thing?" Lucretia said indignantly. "After everything the rest of the galaxy has done for them they would really turn their backs at the greatest hour of need?"

"They're tired of war," Tigranian said. "Not everyone desires battle. They simply want to live in peace."

"Do you think I urge for battle?" Lucretia said. "Do you think I want to continue to fight every single day just to survive? The Federation has the luxury of pretending the rest of the galaxy doesn't exist. We don't. This planet is less than twenty light years from the Romulan frontier. We'll be one of the first stops if the pointed-ears invade Klingon space. What exactly is the empire doing to keep Starfleet on our side?"

"Are you asking as Lady Lucretia or as Governor of Subik IV?"

"Aren't they the same?" Lucretia replied.

"Of course," Tigranian said with a deep breath. "The answer is…" he began before hesitating.

"The answer is that there's nothing we can do," Laria said. "If the Federation pulls out the Khitomer Accords, we're on our own."

"How comforting," Lucretia said sarcastically.

"If the Romulans invade the Klingon Empire, we would make them fight for every centimeter of space between the border and Qo'noS," Laria said trying to assuage her fears.

"Do you really think Klingons would sacrifice themselves for a new colony of freed slaves?" Lucretia asked.

"You can count on the KDF far more than Starfleet right now," Tigranian replied. He was almost ashamed to say it, but it was the truth.

"If that is the case, then I'm glad my daughter is on Earth. If the Romulans try to attack the Federation, then maybe Starfleet will care."

"If the Romulans attack the Federation, then they will only have done one thing," Tigranian said looking towards Lucretia.

"And what is that?" she asked.

"Awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with terrible resolve…"

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