[Captain Evans to the bridge] McMillans
voice said over the comms system. Ryans nose twitched slightly at the sound
of this. [Captain Evans to the bridge] Ryan rolled over and sighed deeply. [Captain
to the bridge!!] McMillan said again almost shouting. Ryan awoke with a start
and sat up quickly banging his head on the top bunk.
"Owwwww!! Yes? What is it?" Ryan responded groggily.
[Captain, we will be in Earth orbit in a few minutes.]
"Thank you Lieutenant."
[Aye sir] responded McMillan. Ryan sat up and looked around. There were PADDs all over the floor and Ryans desk. All information corresponding to the briefing which was now imminent with Starfleet command. Ryan got up and walked over to his locker. He took out a clean uniform and put it on. He then proceeded to gather together all the PADDs and placed them into a briefcase. This was the biggest and most important presentation Ryan had ever had to perform and to say he was nervous was an understatement. He headed for the bridge. As he entered McMillan relinquished his chair and stood to his right.
"Fenris open a channel to Starfleet Command" Ryan ordered
"Channel open Captain" The familiar image of Admiral Ross appeared on the view screen.
"Admiral, we are now in Earth orbit, We are ready to transport."
[Good, you, your first officer and your refugees beam down first. We shall call on the rest of your crew later]
"The rest of my crew?"
[Everyone is going to require an interview Captain]
"Of course Admiral. I will be there in a few moments."
[I look forward to your presentation Captain. Ross out.] The view screen went blank. *What first officer??* Ryan suddenly thought. *McQueen is my highest ranking officer, but I don't honestly think a large presentation lasting a couple of hours with a bunch of snotty nosed Admirals would be his cup of tea.
"Lieutenant McMillan. You feel up for a trip to Starfleet Headquarters? You are my highest ranking command officer after all"
"Sure" she said nervously. The two got up and headed for the transporter pad where Fenris stood waiting for them.
"Good luck, Captain, Lieutenant" he said as he walked over to the controls. "Co-ordinates locked in... Energising.
Ryan and McMillan were greeted by four security officers. The two of which were armed took the three passengers off while the other two signalled for Ryan and McMillan to follow them. The four walked off out into the open air of the gardens of Starfleet Headquarters. It was a pleasant change from Ryans recent surroundings, and the fresh air seemed to give him new confidence. Ryan and McMillan were led to a large building in the centre of the establishment. After passing numerous security checkpoints, the two security officers came to a stop outside a door. They signalled for Ryan and McMillan to enter. They stepped into a vast room with a huge circular table in the centre. Ryan swallowed the saliva that had been building in his mouth and apprehensively stepped in to the darkened room.
"Welcome Captain" came a familiar voice. Ryan and McMillan looked to their left and saw Admiral Ross pouring himself a glass of water in the corner. "This is Starfleet Intelligences top level briefing room. Have a seat." he said motioning to the table. Ryan and McMillan took their seats and Ross sat down next to Ryan. "Where is Commander Heim?"
"He is no longer fit for duty. He suffered a nervous breakdown and tried to kill Lieutenant McMillan and myself, he is currently confined to his quarters."
"You realise he will have to be courtmarshalled for this."
"Right, you have your presentation ready?" he asked
"As good and as in depth as it's gonna get sir." Ryan smiled. "Rest assured, I haven't left anything out"
"Good, we need all the information we need. We managed to unlock the data files concerning Moria and the Coreans. But as you know, this data is far out of date. We need all the up to date information you can give. Computer, time?" Ross asked.
the computer responded.
"Well, you've still got eight minutes before the briefing formally starts."
"Is it just going to be us three?" asked McMillan
"Don't be silly Lieutenant. This is a top level security matter. This entire room will be filled with Admirals within the next few minutes." Ryan suddenly felt ill. "Your the Ronins current first officer?" Ross asked.
"Well no, but I am the highest ranking officer onboard that was suited to be here."
"No first officer eh? We'll have to see what we can do about that for you Ryan."
"Thank you sir." Ryan replied.
Time passed and the Admirals started to pour in. Most Ryan had never seen before, but he managed to pick out a few. Admiral McCaffee, Admiral Zultock and Admiral Pike came in in a group and sat at the opposite end of the table.
"Lets get this meeting under way" said Ross standing up. "I assume that we all know why we are here? For those of you who don't, we are hear to discuss the potential threat of the Proletarians and the Z'terul." At this point murmurs spread across the room. "I am well aware that the large majority of you will never have heard of these races before. Rest assured, you will know all about them momentarily. As most of you *do* know, the USS Leviathan and USS Ronin disappeared from all sensors twenty three days ago. We now know that they were placed in the Andromeda Cirrius galaxy by Q where they encountered the Proletarians and the Z'terul. This happened in the same way as the Enterprise first met the Borg. If these races are anything like the Borg, then the peace in the Federation could well be at an end again. The Ronin, reappeared in the Zebra sector four days ago. With us now is Captain Ryan Evans, Captain of the Ronin to give a presentation of what was encountered out there." Ross sat back down and signalled for Ryan to stand. Ryan slowly and nervously stood up and cleared his throat.
"Good morning, ladies and gentleman. Admiral Ross has already told you as to how we got to the Andromeda Cirrius galaxy, so I will proceed to give you a tactical overview of the two races we encountered out there." Ryan continued for about an hour and a half using the large holographic projector in the centre of the table to display charts and images. A lot of the audience was clearly agitated when Ryan gave the accounts of each species, especially that of the Z'terul. Ryan continued for another two hours covering all aspects from the Leviathans current whereabouts to his personal estimated threat of these two races. Ryan finally finished and sat back down. Admiral Ross stood back up and addressed the room.
"Well ladies and gentlemen, I hope you will agree that this has been one of the more in depth briefings we've had in a while" he said smiling at Ryan. "If we all break for lunch now, we can get back to this in about an hour" at this Ryans eyes widened slightly and he looked at McMillan who returned a similar look. "Dismissed" Ross said. Everyone stood and started filing out of the doors. "Well done Captain, that presentation was seamless. You have given us enough data here to keep intelligence busy for weeks."
"Thank you Admiral. What will happen now?"
"We will break for lunch and reconvene in an hour. Your presence will not be required." he smiled
"Phew" Ryan said wiping his brow. "I thought we would be stuck here all day" he said with a smile.
"Fortunately not. For now, you are to return to the Ronin and head to dry-dock 24. Here the Ronin will be completely refitted with new state of the art systems. Your crew is then to board the Trieste, which will transfer you back to Earth. Living accommodations have been made available for you and your crew here at Starfleet Headquarters. Please tell them to feel free to Roam the grounds or visit anywhere on the planet. However, they will all be called at certain times to give a statement to Starfleet Intelligence."
"Very well, dismissed" Ryan and McMillan turned and headed out to the garden area.
"How on earth did you manage to talk for so long about that?" asked McMillan
"I don't know myself Lieutenant, but let me tell you this, if sitting in briefings like that all day, is the life of an admiral, I would rather die than accept another promotion" joked Ryan.
"Here here" responded McMillan.