Author: Commander Kira Markos
Date: April 3, 2384
Location: Valaria

Tapping his communicator badge, Commander Kira Markos calmly stated, "Kira to Ronin."

[Ronin here. What can we do for you Commander.] Replied Evans' voice over the small communicator speaker.

"Nige, Dinara and I need to beam aboard, Sir. We have some rather disturbing news to tell."

[Acknowledged. Once you've arrived, meet me in my ready room. I'll have the transporter room beam you aboard shortly. Ronin out.]

As the communications channel closed, Dinara spoke up and stated, "He's not going to like this particular turn of events."

"He's not going to like it? You think?" Said Nige as he turned to face Kira. "By the way, thanks for watching out for me back there."

"No problem, Tyran, I'm just grateful that you were able to warn me in time to protect both you and the King from harm." Said Kira as the transporters locked on to their position and began the process of beaming them aboard the Ronin.

As the three materialized on the transporter pads, Dinara posited another question. "What I'm concerned about is why the Romulans are interested in stopping the Valarians from joining the Federation."

"We're all as puzzled as you hon." Said Nige as the three of them moved off the transporter pads and walked toward the transporter room exit.

Seconds later the three officers were in Captain Evans' ready room discussing the events that had happened moments ago on the planets' surface. After a brief recap of the events surrounding the attempted assassination on King Purol and the progress of the First Contact mission, Evans had some questions of his own.

"Has the assassin been questioned yet?" queried Evans.

"No, Sir. Kira thought it would be best if the assassin were to be questioned by our people and representatives of the Valarian government simultaneously to show that the Valarians would maintain their Sovereignty in further jurisdictional matters." Answered Dinara to the Captain's question.

"Good idea Kira. I'd like to be a part of the proceedings when they happen."

"Easily arranged, Sir." Said Nige.

"I still wonder why the Romulans are trying to sabotage these proceedings. The assailant even managed to get a standard Federation phaser. Why would they want to stop these meetings?" asked Dinara, as she repeated her earlier question posited while in the transporter room.

Evans paused for a moment, as though he was thinking hard, then finally answered Dinara's question. "To answer that question, I honestly have no idea." Said Evans. "I think, however, that it may have something to do with our current cargo"

"Does the King know what this device is?" asked Kira.

"I have a feeling he does. The Valarians have tested this technology, but they won't reveal any results." Replied Evans.

"And I thought that this was going to be an easy assignment." Said Kira as he rolled his eyes back into his head.

"Don't worry, Commander, I know the three of you can handle the situation. I want you to return to the surface and continue the negotiations. Now that you know what is at stake, perhaps you will proceed with more trepidation."

"Aye, Sir." Replied Kira.

"Very well then, you are dismissed. Convey this information to no one, Commander, and remember to be on guard; there may be other spies on Valaria."

The three of them left to head back to the surface with Nige, even more concerned than before.