Honor Among Warriors:
The Gryphon Story

By Lt. Col. William D. Smith <Grifter77@aol.com>
Executive Officer, USS Gryphon

Chapter 9: A Welcome Addition

Captain Seals stood in the elevator that brought him up to Ops. He had heard a lot about Sisko and all he has done to prevent the Alpha quadrant from slipping into the hands of the Dominion. He was anxious to meet Captain Sisko, happy to be meeting a man of his caliber.

The elevator stopped at Ops and Seals looked around at the Starfleet and Bajoran crew manning their stations. The Ops Center was very inspiring with all of its equipment and computers--a totally different environment than the bridge of a starship. As Seals stepped off the lift, he saw the station's science officer, a tall, lovely-looking Trill with long brown hair.

Dressed in the blue of science, she stepped up and greeted Seals. "Welcome aboard, Captain. I'm Lt. Commander Dax. Captain Sisko sent me to greet you and give you a tour if you like." She smiled as she spoke.

Seals straightened up. He was admiring the beauty of the young Commander that stood before him. "Well, Commander, that would be nice. Perhaps after my meeting with Captain Sisko."

Dax nodded and turned. "Follow me, sir. I'll take you to Captain Sisko."

Seals walked behind Dax, following her to Captain Sisko's office. Dax rang the bell and a booming "Enter" was heard just before the doors opened. Sitting behind a desk was Captain Sisko, tossing his baseball in the air from where he was sitting, looking ahead. He stopped juggling the baseball and deliberately set it back on its rest. He stood up, straightened his grey tunic, and walked from behind the desk to receive his fellow Captain.

"Captain Seals, I presume?" he asked as he shook Seals hand.

"Yes, Captain."

Sisko smiled and motioned for Seals to take a seat. Sisko turned to Dax. "Old man, can you please bring in the gifts for Captain Seals?"

Dax smiled and nodded. "Yes, Benjamin. I'll be right back." With that she turned and walked out of the office.

Sisko sat on the edge of his desk, folded his arms, and looked at Seals. "Well. Captain, it seems you are going on a little trip into the Gamma Quadrant. I am glad that your ship got a chance to stop here first. That way, your crew can get a little R and R before your journey. What exactly are you going to be doing in there? Things are getting a little heated lately."

Seals stirred in his seat. "Well, Captain, my crew and I are to do some planetary and system surveys along with cataloging anomalies and such. Very scientific and very boring but, hey, it's a new crew and new ship, so I guess they are giving us a little shakedown."

Sisko rubbed his chin. "Well. It seems Starfleet thinks you are in need of some added crew. I've got some gifts for you."

Seals looked inquisitively at Sisko. "Gifts?"

Sisko smiled, and pointed at his office door. It opened and three women wearing Starfleet uniforms walked in and stood behind Seals.

"Captain, meet your three new gifts," said Sisko as he waved at the three women.

Seals stood up and addressed the three officers. "Ladies, I'm Captain Seals of the USS Gryphon. Who do I have the pleasure of speaking with?"

The first one to speak was a blond woman with glasses. "Lieutenant Kennard, Diplomatic officer. Reporting for duty, sir."

Seals nodded, and the next officer, who was also blond, spoke. "Commander Jasienski, Diplomatic Officer. Reporting as ordered, sir."

The last female officer had shorter brownish hair and wore glasses. "Ensign Alcumbrack, Counselor. Reporting as ordered, sir."

Seals shook all three women's hands as Sisko came up behind the women and put his hands on Kennard's and Jasienski's shoulders. "Well, Seals, here are your gifts. Why Starfleet wants you to have members of the Diplomatic Corps on board during a scientific journey is behind me, but they are now under your wing."

Seals sat back down and motioned for his new crew members to stand at ease. The three new officers all relaxed and awaited the next move.

"Ladies, please report to Lieutenant Anderson aboard the Gryphon. She will set you up with quarters. I want to see all of you at 0830 tomorrow after you're finished checking in. Secure for liberty. Dismissed," said Seals.

The three officers nodded and walked out of Sisko's office. As Seals watched them leave, many questions started buzzing through is head. He was happy to have a counselor on board to help with the crew since he was sure there would be need for one. And he was happy to have some diplomats on board to handle any type of negotiation on part of the Federation if it was needed. All in all, a welcome addition to his already elite crew. But why were they being assigned to his crew at this time?

"Well. Now that that is over, why don't we take a walk to the Promenade and get you acquainted with the station a little?" Sisko motioned toward the door.

Seals stood and adjusted his tunic when the door Sisko's office opened. Sisko's First Officer, Major Kira, walked in. She was adorned in a burgundy Bajoran Militia uniform. Her red hair was short and close cut. She nodded at Seals then turned to Sisko. "Captain Sisko, there is something you should see down in Ops. Something very strange is going on with the Wormhole."

Sisko's face turned serious and he walked toward the door. Seals followed close behind. "What is it, Major? Have you pinned down what the disturbance is?" asked Sisko as they walked down the stairs to the Ops command console.

Commander Dax was looking intensely at her sensor readings as she punched up something on the main view screen. The worm hole was opening and closing repeatedly. Nothing was entering or leaving it.

"Dax, do you detect the presence of cloaked ships?" asked Sisko.

Dax shook her head. "No sir. No neutrino signatures or anything . . . Wait, something is coming through the hole. It's a very large ship and it's heavily damaged. It's a Federation Nebula-class starship--the USS Horizon."

Sisko looked at Dax. "Hail the Horizon."

Dax fingered her console. "Hailing frequencies open."

Sisko straightened. "Horizon, this is Captain Benjamin Sisko of Deep Space Nine. What is your status?"

The view screen came to life with the face of a human Starfleet officer--a face with blood all over it. "This is Lt. Commander Wilson. Request assistance. Ship badly damaged and many casualties. We were attacked . . . " Crackle. Fuzzz.

Sisko looked to Dax who responded to his unasked question. "The signal is being jammed from an unknown source." She worked her console, trying to figure out what was happening.

Seals was starting to get worried. This was the second Starfleet vessel to be attacked in the past twenty-four hours. Something big was in the making. He spoke to Sisko. "Captain, it's been a pleasure. I think I should return to my ship; they may need some help."

Sisko was about to answer when a thick white beam tore into the saucer section of the Horizon. A huge white-hot explosion followed. The Horizon buckled, but didn't falter; obviously, it had no shields and took the full brunt of the beam. Suddenly another white beam flashed out and slammed into the station, hitting the Ops Section. Large chunks of the station's structure fell from the ceiling and computer systems blew up, sending sparks and electrical fires all over. Before he could move, a large steel girder fell, striking Captain Sisko on his head and shoulders and knocking him to the floor, bloodied and unconscious.

Ops personnel sprang into a flurry of activity. Seals lifted the heavy beam off Sisko, as Chief O'Brien tapped his comm badge and requested medical emergency teams. Kira's voice pierced the noise in the room, "Red Alert! Raise shields! Power up weapons!"

Seals looked around. He was in a bad situation again. Why was trouble following him around lately? Kira looked at Seals. "Captain, looks like you're Starfleet in charge now. Captain Sisko is incapacitated. What's our next move?"

Seals didn't want this. He wanted to get back to his ship but with the current situation it didn't look like he was going anywhere. He moved over to the weapons console and spoke to it. "Captain's Log, Supplemental. As of this time, I, Captain Michael Seals, am assuming command of Space Station Deep Space Nine."

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Honor Among Warriors: The Gryphon Story, © 1997 by William D. Smith, is reproduced from the October 1997 issue of Gryphon Trek Gazette with permission.
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