This series is submitted by Star Trek Adventures Uber-Fan Daniel Li
Episode 1×5 “No Good Deed”
By Joe Rixman
From Strange New Worlds
Airdate: December 9, 2022
After sustaining extensive microfractures from the tetryon shockwave, USS Lexington spent two weeks docked at Starbase 6 undergoing repairs. Ironically, Starbase 6 was the same place the Lexington, with her previous crew, departed for the ill-fated M-5 computer test with the Enterprise two years earlier in 2268, so it was not an auspicious place for this ship. Still, Starbase 6 had its advantages, located in the Beta Quadrant near the Doradis Sector, it was the nearest starbase to Abassa VII and had no other ships docked, so the Lexington got the VIP treatment. The station’s worker bees and DOT-7 robots went over every inch of the Lexington inside and out, under Ter’Rec’s watchful eyes, finding and repairing every flaw in the ship’s matter. Twenty years earlier, a ship with such extensive structural compromise would have to be scrapped, but advances in micro-replication and matter-energy conversion made it possible to rehabilitate matter at the subatomic level and save her for further service. Meanwhile, Thalon supervised the rebuild of the forward torpedo launchers and Sabin supervised the repair of the duotronic computer, which took a direct hit in the battle over Abassa VII after undergoing an upgrade beforehand.
Shore leave on the starbase was good for the crew’s morale, and the crew also made a friend of Ranjin, the reptilian charge d’affaires of the Xindi Embassy on the station. Ranjin, who had been a Lieutenant Colonel in the Xindi military before retiring and transferring to the diplomatic service, was fascinated by Earth culture and accompanied the Lexington crew to many movie nights, dance halls, and other entertainments. Starbase 6 was home to one of only two Xindi diplomatic missions in the Federation (the other was on Earth), having gone into diplomatic isolation after the Delphic Expanse ceased to exist in the 2150s. United Earth accepted an indemnity for the Xindi attack on the Caribbean and converted it into a scholarship for Xindi students to study on Earth; this exchange continued after the founding of the Federation and was one of the few points of contact between the Xindi and the galaxy at large, which still viewed them with a healthy degree of fear and suspicion. Ranjin was a beneficiary of this scholarship program and developed a taste for Chinese American food while getting a master’s at the University of Minnesota. He was sharing some takeout with Sabin, Thalon, and Grelox at one of the starbase’s “outdoor” movie nights in the arboretum when Ter’Rec contacted them from ops, requesting assistance with a check of the Lexington’s systems.
The three senior officers arrived in ops just as an old-style radio signal came in. Ter’Rec and Sabin used the starbase’s systems to clean it up, identifying the source as the Alpha Doradis system in the Doradis Sector. Grelox did the math and calculated that it would have taken about 5 years to get here, taking into account interference from subspace phenomena in the Doradis Sector. Recognizing some similarities with the Xindi language family specifically Xindi-Avian, they called Ranjin to ops to consult. He confirmed the similarities, so excited that he dropped his plate of moo shu pork on the floor, and convinced Commodore Stone that they should investigate the signal immediately.
Although the Lexington had a week of final checks remaining on her repair schedule, she was the only ship in range, so she departed Starbase 6 the next morning with Ranjin settled into the VIP quarters with all the Earth movies and food he could want. Arriving at Alpha Doradis II, Sabin identified a space station in a decaying orbit around the planet. There was no response to hails and no life signs aboard. Ter’Rec determined that the station would burn up in the atmosphere in 6-12 hours, and would crumple like tissue paper if a tractor beam were used with structural integrity this fragile. Thalon identified damage to the station as the result of attacks with nuclear weapons. While these three were fascinated by the station, Ranjin looked over Athytti’s shoulder at the auxiliary console scanning the surface and pointed out nest-like cities on the planet’s northern continent and empty desert on the southern continent. There were similarly no intelligent life signs on the surface, but scans were inconclusive since the cities’ structures were impenetrable to the sensors. Imaging showed that there was no way to access the structures from the ground, so the away team would have to land on one of the platforms extending from the skyscrapers and try to gain access from there. Ranjin wanted to go to the surface immediately, using his diplomatic status to pressure Captain Birdsong to let him go, despite the obvious time sensitivity of saving the space station.
Thalon tried to persuade Ranjin to wait and let an away team go over to the station first, then accompany him to the surface, but Thalon was unsuccessful so the two away missions would happen simultaneously, with Thalon taking responsibility for Ranjin’s safety. Team One, consisting of Ter’Rec, Dr. Grelox, and Ensign Gao would take the shuttlecraft Hyannis over to the space station and try to repower it and stabilize its orbit, in addition to gathering any information about the Xindi presence and what happened in this system. Team Two aboard the shuttlecraft Plymouth, consisting of Thalon, Sabin, and Iban, would escort Ranjin to the largest city on the surface looking for any survivors and trying to discover what became of the civilization that lived there.
Ter’Rec piloted the Hyannis to the hangar of the space station, and Team One began exploring the station in EV suits and mag boots due to the lack of power to artificial gravity. Early on, they discovered that the architecture was designed for non-humanoid physiology, with cavernous rooms that would have been several decks high on a Federation station and perches with consoles jutting out high above the floor, with none at floor level. Dr. Grelox stayed rooted in his mag boots while Ter’Rec and Gao disengaged theirs and with some zero-G maneuvering managed to reach perches and access the consoles. They were unable to restore power from the station’s own failing reactors or to identify a way to transfer power from the Lexington to the station, so Ter’Rec, reasoning that “it doesn’t have to be pretty, it just has to work,” decided to strip the Hyannis for parts and directed Grelox and Gao’s manual labor in getting all the Starfleet hardware into the alien station’s guts where needed. Ter’Rec could then simply throw the switch and the power came back on. The thrusters fired, stabilizing the station’s orbit, and gravity and life support were restored.
Iban piloted the Plymouth into the atmosphere and into the urban canyons of the city. The towers were kilometers high, and the spaces between them were narrow. A sudden windstorm channeled through that narrow space caught the Plymouth during its descent, forcing Iban to crash-land on the nearest platform, leaving the shuttlecraft totaled and perilously hanging over the edge, with its hatch only opening out into the void. Thalon used his phaser to cut a hole in the roof, which the gale-force winds immediately ripped off. Ranjin scampered out before anyone could stop him and, struck by the wind, fell to the side of the shuttle and hit his head on a piece of wreckage. Thalon, trying to reach Ranjin and restrain him, was also caught by the windstorm and swept over the side, dangling off the edge of the platform by his fingertips. Sabin and Iban were able to climb cautiously out of the shuttlecraft and reach Thalon as he pulled himself up to safety; Ranjin was disoriented but otherwise unhurt. The four of them reached a doorway and gained access to the tower, taking shelter in what appeared to be a residence designed for non-humanoid physiology. Thalon drained Sabin’s phaser to try to restore power to the residence’s electrical grid, which failed, but another attempt using Iban’s phaser succeeded, and power came back for the first time in years, bringing the home computer to life.
In orbit, Team One made its way through the station’s next level, where they found skeletons from two species. Grelox identified the birds as Xindi-Avians, thought extinct for centuries since the Xindi Civil War, and the canoe-sized insects, henceforth Doradins, as indigenous to Alpha Doradis II. All the dead aboard the station had been killed by some sort of pathogen, now inert and harmless to the away team. The team also found thousands of Xindi-Avian and Doradin embryos frozen in stasis pods bearing an unfamiliar symbol. As a precaution, Grelox had the Lexington prepare isolation protocols before having the stasis pods and skeletons beamed to sickbay for further analysis. The away team then returned to the Lexington by transporter themselves.
Team Two also beamed back aboard the Lexington, having failed to get much useful information out of the personal computer in the Avian home since the rest of the city was still without power and no other computers (and therefore their version of the internet) were offline. Athytti’s continued analysis of imaging from the Lexington’s sensors had identified the location of a wind farm, and it was nearby to the largest and tallest cluster of buildings, most likely the capitol’s government complex. At a senior staff meeting, Ranjin urged an expedition to the wind farm immediately to get power restored so the government’s computer archives could be investigated, using the Lexington’s third and final shuttlecraft. The senior staff were unenthusiastic at this suggestion. However, the meeting was interrupted when Iban called from the bridge, having detected a power source near the Alpha Doradis star. Sabin went to the science station and identified the power sources as a small escape pod falling into the gravity well of the star and confirmed life signs aboard. Ranjin confirmed that the escape pod was likely of Xindi design.
While Iban took the Lexington out of orbit around the planet and toward the star under impulse power, Ter’Rec and his damage control teams double-checked the tractor beam and fixed a few miscalibrations that the rushed repair schedule meant Starbase 6 had overlooked. Ter’Rec then used the tractor beam to grab the escape pod and bring it into the shuttlebay. Inside the pod, Ter’Rec, Grelox, and Sabin found more stasis pods and audio recordings made by one Governor Seevra, recounting the unhappy tale of two species. Fleeing near extinction in the Xindi Civil War, a sleeper ship of Xindi-Avian colonists landed on Alpha Doradis II. Initially the Avians used the insectoid Doradins as a food source before realizing they were sentient. The Avians then retreated to the northern continent, leaving the Doradin civilization on the southern continent to develop undisturbed for a time. However, as the Doradins entered an industrial age and expanded their settlements northward, the Avians made contact and attempted to guide and uplift the Doradin civilization, sharing technology in the process. This had disastrous results later as the Doradins erupted into a civil war fought with nuclear weapons, during which a plague erupted among the Doradin population as well. The Doradins increasingly became convinced that the Avians were responsible for the plague and attacked their settlements with nuclear weapons as well. The plague ultimately jumped species, killing the Avians as well. A handful of Doradin and Avian scientists secretly collaborated to launch frozen embryos into space, hoping that one day their species might find a new home and survive again. This pod contains those embryos, as well as those scientists who were able to freeze themselves.
Ranjin matched the symbol on his initiation medal to one of the stasis tubes and selected that one for Grelox to open. Avian scientist Kala’Zee awoke and initially had a panic attack upon seeing a Xindi-Reptilian, but calmed down when Ranjin presented his initiation medal and assured him that all Xindi were now at peace.
The Lexington is returning to Starbase 6 to complete repairs and deposit the frozen Doradin and Avian survivors for the Diplomatic Corps to deal with. The big question, given their history on Alpha Doradis II, is whether the Doradins and Avians would be resettled on one world together or on separate worlds. Kala’Zee made it clear in no uncertain terms that the Avians will not want to rejoin the rest of the Xindi at this time and would probably want to colonize a world in the Alpha Quadrant, on the opposite side of the Federation from Xindi space. Ranjin was saddened to hear it, but holds out hope that the Avians will one day take the sixth place on the Xindi Council and the Xindi will be one people again.
Jeremy: Thalon, Iban
Peter: Grelox, Gao
Modular laboratory focus: n/a
Crew support used: 3
Lexington damage: n/a
Shuttlecraft destroyed: 2
On the next Star Trek Adventures…the Season 1 finale… 1×6 “Footfall”