"Tricia!" yelled Tyran. "Open fire on those fighters!"
Immediately, phaser blasts were flying toward the fighters. Tyran quickly got up and ran toward Kira's position as fast as he could. The tanks were coming up from behind, so he had to be quick.
Will and Kira were locked in a battle with the pirates... neither side was making any progress. Tyran joined them in a grenade crater. "Kira...," started Tyran, catching his breath. "Tanks...," he said, pointing behind him.
Kira turned his attention away from the battle and looked around to see the tanks coming at them. He quickly put up a shield around the three of them as the first shell was fired.
"Great, this is just what we need," he said as he got up. He stood with his arm outstretched focusing his energy. A blue ball formed at the end of his hand and fired, completely destroying the first tank.
"Where on Earth could they have got tanks from?" yelled Will over the growing noise.
"I have no idea Doc," answered Tyran as Kira fired another blast, this one missing.
"Kira, will you be Okay with the tanks?"
"Will and I will have to take some of this heat of your back," said Tyran, slotting a new power cell into his rifle. Hancock and Tyran opened fire on the pirates, who had had a minute or so to regroup.
"What's that?" asked Hancock between shots.
"That. Coming out of the trees."
Tyran smiled, "That's our back up, Doc."
Meanwhile, Ryan was wandering through dark empty tunnels. He'd lost the pirate Captain soon after he'd become separated from the rest of his group. The sounds of explosions could still be faintly heard through the walls of the tunnels; the battle was still raging fiercely outside. He found himself fearing even more now for Karissa. Up ahead he saw a light. He pulled out his tricorder as he walked further into a huge cavern. It was not hard to see where the light was coming from. Against the far wall was a large arch-type structure with the image of a large city inside it. This image quickly shifted to that of a different city.
"I've found it," he whispered.
He walked nearer, scanning it with his tricorder.
"Human, you will never have it!" came a snarling, growling voice from behind him. Ryan new it was the pirate captain, and that this was it.... This was the fight for the gate. He turned around and looked the massive Nausicaan in the eye. The Nausicaan threw down his weapon and took a fighting stance. Ryan took off his backpack and placed his tricorder and phaser with his backpack.
He walked up to the Nausicaan and took a fighting stance of his own.
"Bring it on," he said.
The monkey men were fighting as valiantly as they could as they threw rocks and spears at the pirates. They provided distractions as they helped the Starfleet officers in their fight.
Karissa easily jumped over one pirate that charged her. As she landed, she grabbed his neck and snapped it with ease as another came at her. She kicked him and sent him flying. As he came at her again, she swiftly moved around him, grabbed his neck and snapped it. She took out three more in similar fashion.
Finally, she made her way to the cave opening, and without hindrance, she entered. No one saw her. No one followed. She sensed Ryan and his exhilaration. She knew he must have found the gate. But then something changed. She had to get to him! She pulled out her tricorder and followed the readings, hoping to reach him quickly.
With the monkeys completely overwhelming the pirates, Tyran and Will got up. Kira was starting to look a bit tired.
"Keep us covered Kira -- we're going in," said Tyran as he and Will ran off toward the tanks.
Overhead, they heard a large explosion. One of the fighters had finally been hit and spiraled out of control somewhere in the forest. The other came on a strafing run at Tyran and Will as they ran and fired a burst of phasers at them.
Will pulled himself up, coughing on the dirt that had been thrown over them. He rolled Tyran over, but he was unconscious. He hurriedly removed his pack and pulled out his med kit as the fighter swung about ready to perform another run.
As it came in low, it blew up as it was hit from the roof turret. It spiraled down, knocking Will over from the turbulence and crashed into a tank. Will got back up and back to work. He prepared a hypospray and injected Tyran with it. Tyran opened his eyes.
"Come on, move it," ordered Will. He pulled Tyran up and away, just as a shell from one of the tanks landed on their position. "That was a close one, Commander," he said.
The final fighter fired a few shots at the complex now, trying to take Tricia out in the gun turret. It missed and blew holes in the wall. Tricia didn't miss though, as a stream of phaser beams hit the fighter dead on. The fighter burst into flames and dipped, crashing straight into the gun turret.
Tyran shut his eyes and looked away. He shouldn't have left her there.... not on her own. He opened them again though and saw a small figure climbing down the rope he had left there from when he had slid down himself.
"Thank the prophets," he said.
He and Will sat there as Kira blasted the last of the tanks into pieces. When Tricia joined them, they got up and headed back to the battle with the pirates. Benton and the others had now made it out of the complex and were firing from the entrance way at the remaining pirates.
As the last pirate fell, a cheer went up from the *Ronin's* crew. The monkeys started jumping up and down hysterically, screaming at the top of their lungs again, drowning out the sound of the *Ronin's* crew.
Ryan ducked another blow, and another, and another. He'd barely landed a punch on the Nausicaan through his never-ending ferocious attacks. He knew he had to win though.... so much was counting on this. Ryan ducked and punched the Nausicaan as hard as he could in the stomach. The Nausicaan smiled and looked down on Ryan. He picked him up by the throat and threw him ten feet across the cavern. Ryan struggled up as the Nausicaan began striding up to him. He quickly swept the Nausicaan's legs from under him and sent him flying to the ground. Ryan pulled himself up quickly and gave the Nausicaan a few kicks to the ribs. This was no time to worry about fighting nice. Although the Nausicaan was now feeling some discomfort, Ryan wasn't making much headway as the Nausicaan grabbed Ryan's leg and pulled him to the floor as well.
Ryan sat up as quickly as he could, but the Nausicaan was on his feet already and picked Ryan up by his tunic. He lifted Ryan into the air a good four feet. He slammed Ryan against a glass window, part of some kind of decontamination area. Ryan was at the perfect height and gave the Nausicaan a swift kick to the groin. Ryan fell to the ground and rolled through the Nausicaan's legs. He followed through with a kidney punch... well, what he thought was a kidney punch. For all he knew, the Nausicaan may not have had any kidneys. The Nausicaan regained himself and spun around giving Ryan a strong right hook. Ryan hit the ground hard. He pulled himself up and wiped the blood from his forehead. The Nausicaan came at him again, but from behind the Nausicaan, he could make out a figure entering the decontamination area.
"Karissa!" he shouted, as he ducked the Nausicaan's punch.
"Ryan!!" Karissa screamed as she watched him take another blow he couldn't quite avoid. She pounded on the glass with all the strength she had in her, only it wouldn't give. She wasn't about to give up. She was going to find a way through and into that room.
Ryan pulled himself up again. "Karissa! Go through the decontamination cycle!" Ryan ducked a punch and landed one of his own on the Nausicaan's jaw. "You'll be able to get in here if you go through the cycle!" Ryan spun around behind the Nausicaan and kicked him in the back of the knee. The Nausicaan fell and Ryan took him in a headlock.
"Okay!" she replied as she watched. She looked around quickly seeing a control panel. As she looked it over, she started the decon sequence. First, the entryway sealed. For a moment, fear went into her dark eyes as if she were a trapped animal. Then a heavy white mist began falling from the ceiling. It had a strong, pungent odor. The whole time, she wouldn't take her eyes off the fight, willing the cycle to complete swiftly, so that she could get out there and help Ryan.
Ryan tried to snap the Nausicaan's neck, but before he could, it had grabbed him and flung him back to the ground. He followed through with an elbow. Ryan cried out in pain as he heard a rib snap. "You're going to be sorry when she gets through there, Nausicaan," choked Ryan. The Nausicaan picked him up again and threw him again.
"I've waited a long time to kill a Starfleet Captain," snarled the Nausicaan. "And I get to kill his bitch too!"
This wasn't a game any longer. Ryan put the pain out of his mind and stood up. He pounded the Nausicaan, time and time again, jabbing him in the throat and face.
"You'll be sorry you ever uttered those words, you Nausicaan bastard!" He glanced over and saw Karissa was heading into the second stage of decontamination. *Almost here,* thought Ryan. *Another minute or so.*
Karissa paced like a tiger in a cage against the glass as she continued to watch Ryan and the Nausicaan. She wanted to be in there! The decon time was almost up. She knew it, as the mist was almost gone. The blue lighting was starting to change back to normal color as well, and that was the last phase. *Faster, this has to go faster...,* she thought, as she watched helplessly. Suddenly, the light returned to normal. The glass began to inch up, but ever so slowly.
"She isn't bad for a human. After I kill you, I shall have my way with her, before I kill her too."
Ryan screamed and slammed the Nausicaan to the ground. "Shut up! You just shut up now!" he screamed.
The Nausicaan smiled and pushed Ryan off, and knocked him back. He then pulled a knife and plunged it into Ryan's stomach. Ryan staggered backwards... toward the gate. The Nausicaan let out an evil laugh and pushed Ryan through.
Karissa had just rolled under the glass as she watched the knife plunge into Ryan and then him disappear through the gate. "NO!!!!" she screamed, tears leaping into her dark eyes.
"Poor little human female," the Nausicaan pirate sneered. "You will join him soon enough." He brandished the knife still stained with Ryan's blood.
Something went into Karissa's eyes, as she looked at the Nausicaan. She leapt to her feet with ease and ran at him. He had never witnessed a human move so fast. She then landed blow after blow to his face, his chest, his back.... He tried to use the knife against her, only it was as if he were trying to fight a wraith. Suddenly, he felt the knife as it pierced his own chest. He immediately crumbled to the ground in surprised pain. His breath was becoming shallow. She knelt above him, tears in her dark angry eyes.
"What are you?" he hissed out, knowing only now, she was not human.
"Your death," she said, as she thought about how he had killed Ryan. She watched as the Naussicaan took his last gargled breath. With that, she hunched over and sobbed.
"Karissa!" called Tyran as he walked up to her, with a slightly battleworn Kira and Pike alongside. "We were wondering where you'd gotten to. We won the battle. The gate's ours," he announced triumphantly. It was as he got closer, he noticed her shaking and her tears. "What's wrong?" he asked.
Another sob escaped her. "Ryan.... He was stabbed... and... and pushed through the gate.... He did it," was all she said as she motioned to the dead body beside her. "Ryan's gone...."
Tyran crouched down and took Karissa in his arms, as she cried.