Star Trek: Defiant

"Legends" - Part One

Written by Jeffrey Bridges

The man sat alone in the pilot's seat of the Runabout-class shuttle U.S.S. Mississippi. He kept the overhead lights dimmed and his eyes trained upon the small glowing buttons and readouts of the controls before him. His journey had been long, his loneliness overwhelming. He was looking forward to being with living beings again, ones with familiar faces. There was no room for error.

He recounted the events of the last few months over and over again, and all he had learned.

The Alpha Quadrant fighting back against the nanites, which were now all but cleared from every planet--all that remained were the ships under their control which still roamed free about the Maginot Line.

Admiral Schell finally being recognized by the whole of Starfleet for his crimes, though not being able to stand trial as he was carted off by Romulans. And then the recent discovery that the Dominion had allied itself with a powerful force from the distant future, known only as the Brotherhood, and the rumors that they might be planning for an invasion or another war.

It was a true mess. And it was maddening to assume that one lone man could fix it all. And yet that was his very plan.

The proximity scanners beeped and startled him from his thoughts. He cursed himself for being lax and being too enraptured in his own grand thoughts to be watching the sensors ardently. The ship he was approaching had already spotted him, he was sure.

And with the blatant Federation transponder signal his Runabout was sending, there was no way they could have missed him. He cursed himself again as the communications terminal signaled a hail from the other ship. He had wanted to be the one to initiate communications.

Too late for that now, he thought, as he keyed in the sequence that would accept the hail and bring the communiqué to the viewscreen. He took a deep breath, straightened his uniform, wiped the sweat from his forehead and waited. The small viewscreen quickly displayed a small Federation logo before being replaced by the image of Captain Bridges on the bridge of the Defiant.

The Runabout pilot almost did a double take. He wasn't used to seeing the hoverchair beneath that torso. He quickly regained his composure and fixed his eyes upon those of the captain.

No words had yet been spoken, but clearly the captain was speechless. His jaw hung open from when he had started to identify himself and had then seen whom he was talking to. The Runabout pilot smiled. "Isn't anyone going to welcome me?"

Across the entire bridge, not a soul dared breathe. They all just sat at their stations, eyes fixed on the main viewscreen and the unexpected visage of Commander John Hardin.

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