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The Multi-Planetary Association for No-Good Drunks, and Out-of-Control Sociopaths

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2262 AD

Federation Space

USS Enterprise

Six months after the fiasco with the Dillon, Mara Miraal was still hanging around the Enterprise. She had all but acclimated to life in a different galaxy. In fact, Uhura was near-amazed at how quickly she’d gotten used to it all. 

Nyota listened with rapt attention, eyes wide with wonder. 

  “You mean there is real magic in your universe?” she asked. 

  “Well, it’s not magic, exactly,” Mara corrected. “That’s not to say there isn’t real magic as well. The Nightsisters on Dathomir have their own personal brand of hoodoo and witchcraft, but the Force...well, it’s kind of hard to explain. It just is.”

  “And everyone has it?” Scotty asked. 

Mara nodded. “To some extent, yes. Although, most people don’t have enough of a connection to use it properly.” She took a bite of her hamburger, and considered. “There’s two main schools of thought when it comes to the Force; the Jedi and the Sith...and then there’s people like me, who use what we have, and don’t pay too much attention to the particulars.”

The crowd around Mara had grown steadily in the past few minutes, each finding some excuse to stop and listen to her stories. Scotty and Doctor McCoy had been the first to join the group, and Nyota and Christine Chapel had joined soon after. 

  “So, is this Force good or bad?” Christine asked. 

  “Neither. And both,” Mara replied. “The Force is neutral, but the person using it can either use it for their own ends, or for the purpose of helping the galaxy. It’s like...a phaser. You can either use it to protect, or to destroy.” 

  “You said that Mandalorian Force users are very rare,” Doctor McCoy broke in. “Why is that? Is there something in Mandalorians genes that prevent it?”

  “Mandalorians, as a general rule, don’t trust Force users, so the few that there are, don’t end up being trained as Jedi or Sith. There was a purge many generations ago, and well...let’s just say Mandalore’s not exactly a cortosis mine of Force prodigies anymore.” 

  “And what about your son? Does he have the Force?” Uhura questioned. 

  “Uh, huh. Obi-Wan is very powerful, though he won’t admit it to himself,” Mara replied fondly. “He’s a great kid.” 

Christine leaned forward, crossing her arms on the table top. “Does that mean the Force is hereditary?” 

Mara opened her mouth, then closed it with a frown. “I have no idea.”

Uhura started to ask another question, when a crackle of static came over the intercom. 

   “Attention: Lieutenant Uhura, Engineer Scott, and Colonel Miraal,”  Captain Kirk’s voice echoed over the comm system, “ You are needed on the bridge immediately,”

The group around the table began to disperse, going back to their jobs. 

  “Do ye’ think it’s a new assignment from Starfleet?” Scotty asked. 

Colonel Miraal shrugged. “Who knows?

  “I guess we’d better get back to the sick-bay,” Doctor McCoy grumbled, standing and stretching his back. 

Christine gestured for him to go ahead. “After you, Doctor.” 

The two of them walked off, leaving Scotty, Uhura, and Mara  alone at the table. 

  “Well, whatever it is, it can’t be as interesting as the last assignment,” Uhura said with a repressed shiver. 

What happened on their last stop-over was best left to the Captain’s Log, and kept far away from recent memory. She could only hope she never had to set foot on Mandrakos again. 

  “I’m with you there, lass,” Scotty agreed. “But we’ll nae learn anythin’ by stayin’ here.” 

  “Come on, then,” Mara sighed. “Might as well get it over with. Let’s see what Jim wants now.” 



Mara stared up at the intimidating profile of the Enterprise

  “So, you guys like your ships to look like great big shabla targets?” 

Spock nodded appreciatively. “Thank you for your intelligent observation, Colonel.” 

  “Six months, and you’ve still nae got a clue,” Scotty grumbled, and looked up at the Enterprise. “Don’t worry, old girl. Some people jus’ dunnae appreciate true beauty.” 

Jim chuckled, and led the crew forward. 

Thyeria was an interesting place, home to interesting people. They were similar to Klingons in the respect that theirs was a warrior culture. Their king was elected by way of ritual combat. Any citizen could challenge the ruling king at any time. Unsurprisingly, the longest reign of any king was no more than nine years. 

The Enterprise had been sent by the Federation to negotiate a trade with the king. The planet’s main resource was a rare substance called Berontium. Supposedly, it could be refined into a fuel source that was far more powerful than dilithium crystals. If everything went according to plan, the Federation would be stronger than ever before. 

The only problem was the locals of Thyeria didn’t like or trust Humans. And, as a result, Spock was the only one the Thyerianns agreed to talk to. 

James, Spock, and Bones, along with Scotty and Mara beamed down to the planet’s purple surface. 

The Thyerian King was waiting with his council when they arrived. The king nodded, and clasped a closed fist to his heart. James nodded and echoed the gesture. 

  “Commander Spock,” the king said, ignoring Jim entirely, “we have much anticipated your arrival.” 

Spock inclined his head in recognition. “It is a privilege to be here, Your Majesty. The Federation extends its felicitations to you and your people.” 

The kings’ responding smile was friendly enough. “My council and I were about to take supper. We would be fascinated to learn about your people and culture, Commander.” 

  “That would be enjoyable. I thank you,” Spock replied. 

King Charda led the way into the palace, his council and Spock following close behind. James led the other crew, trailing a step behind the last councilmember. 

  “Jim,” Bones whispered, “any idea why they hate Humans so much?” 

James shook his head. “There was nothing in the data archives about it. The Federation recommended we go along with it.” 

Scotty walked beside them. “Captain, do you really think it was such a good idea to bring along Mara?”

James whispered back. “Colonel Miraal is a warrior from a lineage of warriors. She may have some insight to their culture and customs.” He glanced back at Mara, who was bringing up the rear. “Speaking of: Mara, why are you wearing your helmet? Won’t they take offense if you don’t show your face?” 

Bones and Scotty glanced back as well, interested in the explanation. 

  “I find it ill-advised to remove any armour--especially a helmet--in the presence of someone you neither know nor trust,” she replied. “Also, they’re a bunch of jerks, and I wanted to tell them that I don’t like them while still being classy about it.” 

Scotty laughed, and Jim and Bones chuckled. 

A councilwoman whirled on her heel and leveled a chilling glare at them.

  “Show respect in the presence of the king!” she snapped. 

Bones shut his mouth firmly, stopping himself from saying something he would probably regret later. 

  “Apologies, madam councilwoman,” Jim said easily. “Won’t happen again. 

The councilwoman scowled and flounced off. 

Bones half-turned to Mara. 

  “You wouldn’t happen to have a helmet for all of us, would you?”

  “Try not to tick off another planetary ruler at dinner, Mara,” Jim said with a hidden sigh. Bones smirked, remembering last time. “We need to make a good impression on the king and his council.”

  “I legally outrank you, captain. But I will do my best to not say anything too rude,” Mara conceded. 

Bones frowned, following Jim into the dining room. 

  “How does a colonel outrank a Navy captain?” 

  “I’m second in command of an entire system of planets,” she responded, and strolled on ahead, leaving Bones speechless. 

He chased after her, a million questions brimming on his lips.

Then he noticed the dining room was full. There were no empty seats left. 

Bones, Jim, and Scotty stood at the door, unsure of what to do. 

King Charda addressed Spock instead of Jim. 

  “Humans do not traditionally dine with us. Lily will show your crew to the servant’s kitchen.”

A Human girl stepped forward when the king beckoned her. She was pale and on the wrong side of skinny. It was more than enough to make Bones’ blood boil. He clenched his jaw, teeth grinding together. 

The girl stepped towards them, and gestured back to the door they’d just entered through.

  “If you would kindly follow me,” she said in heavily accented English. 

Jim cast one glance back at Spock and the king, and followed the girl out into the hallway. Scotty trailed after.

After a second, Bones realized Mara wasn’t following them. 

  “Mara,” he whispered. 

She slightly tilted her head, and whispered, “I don’t trust these or'dinii. I’ll stay with Spock.” 

Several of the council members and servers were glancing their way, so Bones ducked back out into the hallway. 

  “Where’s the colonel?” Jim asked when Bones had caught up. 

  “She’s staying behind to watch Spock’s back.” 

  “Good idea.”

The girl led them down two more corridors before turning left into an undecorated hall. It didn’t escape Bones’ notice that there weren’t any paintings or relics in this portion of the palace. 

  “Your name is Lily, correct?” Jim asked kindly. 

The girl stumbled for a second. “Umm...yes. That is my name.” 

  “It’s a very pretty name, lass,” Scotty said with a smile. “I’m Montgomery Scott.”

Lily looked at them with wide eyes. “You have two names?” 

  “Actually, Lily, all of us have three names each,” Jim replied. 

Before she could go on about that , Bones spoke up.

  “Lily, why do Thyerianns hate Humans so much?” 

Lily glanced back at them, a distinctly uncomfortable look on her face. “Oh, um, they don’t like us to talk about it. Which is completely understandable,” she blustered on, “I mean, if I was in their positions, I guess I’d do the same thing.” 

She stuttered on, explaining away. Bones didn’t understand a thing she was talking about. Something about a murder a long time ago, and a forgotten heir to the throne. 

As she led them down corridors and hallways, he began to connect pieces of her jumbled up story together. 

There was something definitely fishy going on around here. And Bones was bound and determined to figure out what it was. 




The king glanced back at Colonel Miraal who still had her helmet on. She stood militantly at the corner of the room, hands clasped behind her back. 

Spock could admit he was glad she decided to remain. It was unwise to be alone in a room full of unknown variables. 

King Charda returned his gaze to the meal and to Spock. 

  “Your bodyguard, I presume?”

Spock inclined his head. “Of a sort. I have found Colonel Miraal to be unparalleled in combat and battle strategy.” 

  “But she is Human?” Councilwoman Breun smiled mockingly. “How can such as a Human learn to understand the intricacies of true war?”

  “Many years of experience, Madam Councilwoman,” Spock replied. He turned to the king. “Your Majesty, to return to the subject of my presence here: what is the extent of your people’s reliance on Berontium?”




  “You are a doctor?” an aging woman asked. “You heal people?”

Bones nodded. “Well, I do my best.”

  “Doctor McCoy is the best in his field,” Jim stated. 

The woman smiled hesitantly. “I did not think even your Starfleet would allow Humans in such high positions of trust.”

  “A good portion of Starfleet is Human, ma’am,” Scotty said, to the wonderment of the servants encircled around them. “I myself am in charge of the finest starship in the Federation fleet.”

James raised an eyebrow. “In charge of the Enterprise, Mr. Scott? What does that leave me?”

  “Oh, you command her well enough, captain. But who is it that keeps her running smoother than my mother’s whiskey?” 

He was about to concede the point gracefully, when the lights shut off.

They flickered on a second later, along with a slew of alarms. The blaring rang throughout the palace.

Servants scrambled away, grabbing everything they could carry. 

  “Wait! What’s going on?” Bones called. 

  “The palace is under attack! Get to shelter!” Lily shouted back. 




Mara’s hand drifted to her blaster. 

Something was wrong. The hair at the base of her neck tickled, and the feeling of unease began to permeate the air around them. 

The absence of the Force left her fearfully blind to any trouble that might be on the way. Cut off from the Force, her natural senses had to work twice as hard. And right now, they were working overtime. She just couldn’t for the life of her figure out why. 

The councilman and Spock were discussing the import rates of the Berontium. Aside from Spock, every one of the seven people seated at the table were warriors hardened by battle, but none of them seemed to notice the growing feeling of tension and unease in the room. None of the servants--mostly Humans--noticed either. 

Mara searched every exit and entrance in sight. 

It didn’t take her long to find what she was looking for. The third window down was unlocked...and the vent behind the king’s chair was missing several screws. 

She tightened her grip on her blaster. 

Then the lights went out. 

Mara ran for Spock. He was the only one at the table without a real weapon. 

But as soon as she took a single step, the window and vent burst open. 

Flashes of bullets and blaster fire lit up the darkened room, illuminating everything. King Charda and his council were firing back at the intruders pouring in. One of the councilmen flipped the table over, and took shelter behind it. Mara followed his lead, and ducked behind the make-shift barrier. 

Spock turned to her, pale greenish skin shining eerily in the brief flashes of burning light. 

  “Set phaser to stun, colonel!” 

Mara growled lightly, but complied. She hated to go easy on these guys, but Spock was right. They needed at least one alive. 

With a single motion, she flipped the setting on her blaster to ‘stun’, and fired at a young man. It struck him square in the chest, and he fell. 

Someone to her left cried out and went silent. Mara kept her mind and blaster on the swarming mob. 

  “Spock, get the king out of here!” she shouted. 

Not waiting to see if Spock followed orders, she stunned three more Thyerianns in quick succession. 

The blasterfire began to lessen. Mara squinted, gauging the amount of attackers remaining. Six or seven left. 

Two more fell to the council members' fire, and a blaster bolt struck Mara in the arm. She dropped her blaster with a hiss of pain. 

Ka’ra, that burned!

She reached for her backup blaster, and flipped it to ‘stun’.

Within moments, the skirmish was over. Councilwoman Breun fired once more, and the dining room fell silent. 

Mara slowly stood, cradling her injured arm. The lights flickered back on. 

She bent to pick up her DeeCee, and scanned the damage. 

The room was full of bodies. 




The council chambers were full. Along with the reunited crew of the Enterprise , the king and what remained of his council filled the space, leaving very little room for the tension building between the Humans and Thyerianns. 

  “How many perished?” King Charda asked. 

  “Council members Tivaal, Tiniler, and Jallel are dead. Thirteen insurgents were eliminated, and six were stunned by Commander Spock’s bodyguard,” Councilwoman Breun stated flatly. 

King Charda sighed. “So much death.”

  “Where are the captured men?” Spock inquired. 

  “Your bodyguard is questioning them in the dungeons.”

  “You are allowing Colonel Miraal to question them?” James asked, surprised and slightly worried. Bones seconded the sentiment. 

  “She seemed to think she would be able to gain some new information from the insurgents, rather than seeking the information from us,” Councilwoman Breun replied frostily. 

That was interesting, but Bones needed to get down to the dungeons first, before Mara decided to use some of her mercenary skills to get the information she wanted. Her ways of extracting information were not pleasant in the best of circumstances. 


Bones stared at the sight in front of him. He’d expected Mara to be pulling out fingernails, or something equally as horrific. Apparently he shouldn’t have worried. 

Instead, Mara was sitting on a box outside of the cell, chatting amiably with the six prisoners. However, the calm sight did nothing to ease Bones’ nerves. If there was anything the past six months had taught him, it was that Mara made enemies fast and friends faster. And from the look on Mara’s face, these prisoners knew something exceptionally interesting, 

A feeling of dread built in Bones’ gut. In his line of work, interesting was never good. 


2262 AD


Starfleet HQ 

  “Colonel Miraal, I have half a mind to court-martial you right here and now!” the admiral raged. 

  “Such an effort would be futile, as Colonel Miraal is not a part of Starfleet,” Spock interjected. 

James smothered the urge to grin. 

  “I am aware of that, Commander,” Admiral Rolland snapped. He glared at the three officers standing in front of him. “You have one chance to give me a good explanation for what happened on Thyeria.” 

  “It’s all quite simple, admiral,” James began. “Councilwoman Breun was staging a coup, and we stopped her.” 

  “By helping her kill the king,” Admiral Rolland said flatly. 

The three glanced at each other. 

  “It was more of a misunderstanding caused by spur of the moment bad decisions,” Mara explained. 

  “I’m not sure this meeting is entirely appropriate. The trade for Berontium was settled to everyone’s satisfaction, and we were able to stop a hostile takeover,” James stated calmly. “Thyeria is entering its first period of peace in generations.” 

  “Altogether, I think everything went smoothly,” Mara added, then amended, “Well, it did after we figured out it was Councilwoman Breun who killed the former queen, rather than Human renegades.” 

The admiral’s hand came down on his desk with a resounding wham! “Damn your insolence! You took part in a revolution, violated the Prime Directive in the grossest manner, and assassinated a royal head of state!” 

  “Technically, sir, it was a fair fight, which King Charda initiated,” James pointed out. 

The admiral’s glare swung to him. 

  “Are you admitting to taking part in these events?” 

  “Not at all,” James replied easily. “I’m simply saying the term ‘assassinate’ might be a little harsh in this circumstance.”

  “And I wasn’t really the one who killed him,” Mara added. “I’d say it was a fifty/fifty between Breun and B--Doctor McCoy, wouldn't you agree, Spock?”

  “You are forgetting the element of poison, Colonel,” Spock remarked. 

  “Ah yes. My mistake. It was roughly thirty-seven percent Bones’ fault.” 

That addition wasn’t strictly necessary.

The vein above Rolland’s eye bulged. 

  “You are lucky your commanding officer is in another universe, or else I would be having a serious discussion with him about your behavior.” 

  “Well, seeing as my commanding officer is dead, I guess you’re out of luck,” Mara said, and James detected a hint of bitterness in her voice. 

  “I can find no reason to place the blame solely on Colonel Miraal,” Spock continued. “Her actions may have resulted in King Charda’s death, but it is my belief that she acted in self-defense.”

  “Thanks for sticking up for me, Spock,” Mara grinned appreciatively. 

Spock inclined his head in acknowledgement of the gratitude. 

Admiral Rolland stared at them. 

  “My word. How did a woman like you ever make it in the military? Let alone gain a rank?” he huffed incredulously. “Do you even know the meaning of the word ‘responsibility’?” 

Immediately, James felt Mara stiffen beside him. 

    “My apologies, admiral. I wasn’t aware my mockery of this farce had offended you,” she said coldly. “In my universe, if an operation is completed to everyone’s satisfaction with minimal casualties, it is generally called a success.”

Rolland obviously hadn’t been expecting Mara’s rapid change of personality. Even James still wasn’t used to the ever-changing moods of their interloper. 

The admiral turned to Spock and James. 

  “If you wouldn’t mind, gentlemen. I think the Colonel and I have some things to discuss in private.”

Unable to argue with an admiral, James nodded. 

  “Sir,” Spock bowed, and followed James from the room. 




Ignatius Rolland  sighed, and pinched the bridge of his nose. 

  “Colonel, I understand your position, but please understand mine.” 

  “I do understand, admiral,” Miraal countered. “I am not Starfleet personnel, but while I remain aboard the Enterprise and help out on missions, I represent Starfleet. And in acting as I would have if it had been my operation and my men, my actions reflected back negatively on both you and Starfleet Command.” 

Rolland raised an eyebrow. Maybe she wasn’t as blindly reckless as he thought. 

  “Thank you for your perception, Colonel,” he said. “I will be lenient in my report, but this is the only time. Next time, I trust you to remember your place here. I advise you to err on the side of caution in future.” 

Miraal nodded. “Thank you, sir.” 

  “That will be all, Miraal.” 

Miraal stood to attention, snapped a sharp salute towards him, and headed out the door.  

Rolland watched her go with a frown. That woman was going to cause a lot of problems down the line--he could feel it. 




Scotty and Bones were waiting outside the door when Spock, James, and Mara exited the building. 

  “So, what’s the verdict?” Scotty asked.  

  “Do we have to break her out of jail?” Bones asked, already pulling out a syringe filled with a sedative. 

Mara slung her arms across the two men’s shoulders with a smile. 

  “No worries this time, guys. Rolland let me off easy.”

Spock quirked an eyebrow. “I find your levity on the matter entirely illogical, Mara.”

  “I’m sure she’s learned her lesson,” James replied with a pointed glance at Mara. “Right?”

She shrugged. “Aye, aye, captain.” 

Scotty clapped his hands together. “So, who wants tae get bangered at the Blue Monkey?” 

  “Count me out, Scotty,” Mara said, and linked her arm through Bones’ “Bones is taking me to a fancy restaurant.” 

Bones let out a deep groan. “That was the bet, wasn’t it?” 

Mara quickly dropped his arm. “If you don’t want to, we can call the bet off. Who would have guessed that the forgotten heir was Lily?” 

  “No, that’s alright,” Bones said quickly. “You won fair and square.”

James narrowed his eyes at the two. There was something different between them lately. It both piqued his curiosity, and scratched at his drama-senses. 

  “Shall we then?” Mara said, holding her arm out. This time, Bones took it without hesitation. 

  "Excuse us, Jim," Bones said. "It seems I've got a date."

The two of them walked off down the street, arm in arm. 

  “Very interesting,” Spock remarked. 

  “What is interesting, Mr. Spock?” asked James. 

  “Humans, captain,” replied Spock. “Very interesting indeed.” 

Scotty nodded sagely. “Aye. I’ll agree with you there.”