Undisclosed Stateroom – USS Charon
“Wolves Within The Flock”
He looked up and scowled at the ceiling from whence a repugnant Romulan voice inserted itself upon his consciousness yet again. What did that infernal woman demand now?
“……….Now that the issue has been addressed I expect no further problems. They will be dealt with quite harshly. All senior crewmembers are to gather in cargo bay one thirty minutes prior to departure for pre mission briefing. That is all.”
“Problems”, he laughed. “She expects no further problems.” Grabbing a glass he poured himself a small glass of scotch from a decanter on a nearby table. Bringing the glass to his lips he let the strong, amber liquid slide down his throat. As if a simple fatherly speech to the crew could ward off such a thing. The speech was just another ignored warning that the Riov of this khina (ship) Shiarrael Rehu had to be stopped.
Others before him had tried. He had secretly hoped for their success alas they had all met with defeat and failure. He was hopeful the marines would have vanquished her yet their passion for vengeance clouded their reasoning. Then there was another aboard who had also disappeared. The facts were unclear but he too failed to dispose of the despot on the bridge now opening calling herself a tyrant and reveling in the title. He was unsure how his life had ended, but he was no doubt gone. He could be sure he met a bad end. The subtle traces of his subterfuge had disappeared along with his body. Only Rehu would know what became of him.
The Romulan was smart. She surrounded herself with humans too stupid or blindly loyal to realize what it was they were protecting. If they only knew of her murderous past, her bloody commands, and her insatiable thirst for violence – would they still support her? What if they knew of her dishonor and disloyalty to the Empire and her disposition to rebel against anyone who stood in her way? The answer was yes. She was the captain and no matter how much blood stained her hands be it green or red they would die to protect her. Such as it had always been, such as it would always be - Rehu manipulated others to die for her which is why she was still alive. That thought alone was enough to sicken him. However the sickness that coursed through him had but one cure. The ailment that afflicted him hour by hour, day after day had been her creation – she had taken everything from him and still she remained alive. Only in death could his sickness be cured and his pain released. The elements indeed were fickle and dispassionate. How could one so vile remain to inflict such pain on the living?
Such questions he couldn’t answer. It wasn’t worth the effort trying. The law of probabilities would be her undoing. Statistically, her luck, if that’s what one could call it was running out. Someone would eventually end her existence. If not him, then another would replace him, and another, and another still. They would keep coming. They were an endless tide and she just a tiny, insignificant fool who dared to challenge stormy waters.
There were so many people and so many interests both inside the Empire and outside its borders who wanted Shiarrael Rehu dead. EnRiovs to Admirals, dhiys to normal citizens – there were so many who hoped and prayed for her death be it short and swift or long and painful – the end result was all that mattered. She had escaped final judgment in the Empire by fleeing like a lhonae (coward) to the Federation and to Starfleet. She was slippery like hevam snakes and just as deadly. However, her days of slithering were slowly ticking away.
He glanced at the chronometer. Yes. The sands of time were against her. If he could not claim her life at least he took some small measure of comfort in knowing that time itself was stalking her. She might be able to survive the assassin’s blade, but time she could only run from. It would never stop stalking her, never end it relentless pursuit, and never rest. She would someday fall victim to its teeth. He only hoped someone else got to her first. If the elements willed it he would be the one to end her life far in advance of time’s fated hour. His soul and countless others demanded the honor and would never rest until she lie dead like the vang'radam (traitor) she was.
So long he had waited and watched from the shadows much to his patron’s ire. He was not one to rush something so exquisite to him, so wonderfully delicious. He would continue to play the strings of the hevam marionettes aboard this rusted hulk of a ship. They were such delightful play things. He so enjoyed stroking their fears and coaxing their many insecurities. Better yet, there were so many of them aboard. He didn’t have to lay a finger on Rehu. He had an entire army at his disposal. All of them were potential soldiers in a war they knew nothing about, but would so easily take part in. He could play upon their anxieties and wind up his toy soldiers to send against her. One would eventually find its mark. He had the luxury of time to continue trying from complete and absolute anonymity. If Rehu wanted a flock of fluffly, toothless sheep to lead as their shepherd so be it. No worthy Romulan would follow such a worthless piece of ryak'na (trash).
He laughed as his voice was amplified by the crystal glass at his lips.
The tyrant had best be wary of her flock. She had no idea how many wolves lie in sheep’s clothing around her. No idea whatsoever. There were many aboard with passions and convictions just as strong as hers. Such things could be so easily manipulated as well she knew.
The last drops of whiskey touched his lips. He had acquired a taste for this beverage while in the hevam’s proximity. However he had little time to savor its taste. The hour was late and he had much to do. Much to do indeed.
He set the glass down on the table and turned off the lights. A small grin formed on his lips as he left his quarters and headed off for duty.
[ To Be Continued… ]