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Star Trek/Star Wars – Galaxy at War: Part Fifty What You Leave Epilogue
Star Trek Dimension – January 2376 C.E.
The freshly constructed Starbase Unity inside the Federation/Romulan Neutral Zone Beta Quadrant
Padme Skywalker stood nervously between the gently sloping arms of a crescent-shaped silver topped table. Around the table from left to right were seated Federation President James Tiberius Kirk, Klingon Chancellor Martok, Romulan Praetor Ŏ'ŗên or "Nero" (he found most other species could not properly pronounce his name so he used the moniker whenever interacting with them), Jedi Master Adi Gallia, Duchess Satine of the Mandalorians, and Crown Prince Slathis of the Gorn Hegemony (the Romulans still demanded a buffer of at least one seat between their representative and that of the Gorn who felt likewise). These six individuals represented the victorious Alpha and Beta Quadrant powers great and small who were formal members of the Alliance. Padme noticed that between Nero and Adi Gallia a seventh seat was vacant.
Xrathis the elderly king of the Gorn Hegemony was represented by his most capable son due to his failing health. Following General Slessshh's death, remnants of the Black Crest movement staged a brief yet bloody insurgency which led to their expulsion from Gorn space. Rumor had it surviving Black Crest members had joined the Sith Dominion but this could not be verified.
"On behalf of the Milkyway Galactic Alliance Board of Governors I thank you for coming here today Mrs. Skywalker," Kirk said using the less formal Mrs. rather than Padme's official diplomatic title. "You're likely wondering why we've summoned you."
"I am curious," Padme admitted.
"While performing duties necessary to formalize our mutual defense pact and transform it into a new galactic political structure we've encountered, a number of difficulties mostly based around problems caused by our shared history," Nero said his voice soft and his demeanor placid as was often the case unless he was provoked then his bad temper, even by Romulan standards, would show through.
"We need a fresh pair of eyes if we wish to clearly see the path forward," Martok said in his usually gruff, straightforward manner.
"There are few in this galaxy we all equally trust you are one of those individuals." Slathis hissed.
"I don't understand. What do you mean?" Padme said blinking.
"The Alliance requires a head of state. One duty of this head of state will be to break any ties after three deadlocked votes by members of this body." Adi Gallia said.
"A Governor General which we've decided will be appointed by this body for a term of no less than five years for a maximum of four terms," Satine said.
"We want to formally offer you the position of Governor General effective immediately," Kirk clarified.
"I'm speechless," Padme said. "Your faith in my abilities humbles me."
"Will you accept the position?" Nero asked not beating around the bush.
"If you can accommodate the preexisting responsibility I have to my family, especially my newborn children, I will graciously accept your offer," Padme said not able to hold back a small.
"Very well then Madam Governor General please take your seat there is much which needs doing," Satine said with a smile of her own.
"Now that a tentative constitution has been agreed upon, our next order of business is the fate of the Cardassian Union and aligned belligerent Alpha Quadrant powers. Our ongoing negotiations with the Beta Quadrant Tholian Assembly will be addressed separately in this session, time permitting." Kirk said once Padme took her seat.
Cardassia Prime Alpha Quadrant, night
"Look what I made for you at school today, Kira." Sakal showing Commander Kira Nerys a crude hand-drawn picture of three figures. "A picture of you, me and daddy." The boy was flanked by a small contingent of four Starfleet Clone Troopers in full body armor including helmets their weapons at the ready.
"It's very nice, Sakal," Kira said hugging the boy.
"Run along and wash up Sakal while the water is working," Damar said to his son. Overhead lights flickered as the overburden power grid struggled to function.
"Yes, sir," Sakal said. Like most Cardassian children Sakal was expected to show his parents respect at all times.
When his son was safely out of earshot Damar glared at the Clone Troopers. "Do you really need to escort my son into his own home?" He snapped.
"I have my orders." The female Starfleet Clone Commander said. Her tone and lack of any formal title such sir while addressing the nominal leader of Cardassia smacked of disrespect.
"Please don't come inside again unless there is a security issue," Kira said stepping between Damar and the Clone Commander.
"As you wish ma'am. We'll be outside patrolling the grounds if you should require assistance." The Clone Commander said gesturing at Damar with the muzzle of her rifle. While the safety was clearly engaged her overtly aggressive gesture made her point crystal clear. She then departed with her fellow clones.
Over strenuous objections from many Alliance political figures, Clone Troopers were stationed on many occupied worlds at the end of the war including Cardassia Prime and Ferenginar. With the Alliance suffering from an acute shortage of soldiers fit for continued duty the several hundred million Clone Troopers who had been produced by Mariposa became a security force of convenience. While few were happy with the current status quo, especially in light of earlier events on Romulus, no one offered a viable alternative so things remained as they were to the satisfaction of no one save but for a very few (Admiral Alynna Nechayev and Jedi Master Mace Windu were counted among this select group).
"You didn't have to do that," Damar said. "I had the situation in hand."
"Sure you did," Kira sighed. "So, you noticed her troops disengaged the safety on their guns when you and she had words?"
"They did?" Damar asked.
"They did," Kira confirmed. "If you had said another word they might very well have shot you."
"But I'm the leader of the Cardassian Union," Damar said in disbelief.
"Which is why they would have shot you and later claimed you attacked them. They're bred to fight and have known nothing but war their dangerous and you should know that." Kira said.
"You're right, I should," Damar said. "You saved me again." He added walking behind Kira he began to gently massage her shoulders an act which would have earned him a beat down three short months ago or even death.
"Damar, stop," Kira protested weakly her eyes closed but she did not push him away.
"Why, because I'm a Cardassian and you're a Bajoran? I thought we had moved beyond labels? People should be judged by their actions not by their species, remember?" Damar said planting kisses on Kira's neck.
"No, because I'm a high ranking Starfleet officer and you're the leader of a former enemy group," Kira said in spite of her words she pushed her body closer to Damar who clasped his hands around her waist. Her eyes remained closed.
"Just labels," Damar whispered in her ear. "They don't matter, not anymore."
"Ahem, I can come later if you'd like." Elim Garak said after clearing his throat loudly.
"Garak," Kira exclaimed after she and Damar quickly pulled apart. "I hate how you sneak around."
"Yes, it's very unnerving." Damar agreed. "Maybe I should put a bell around your neck, or a noose."
"Perhaps another time," Garak said while the smile Damar found so irritating never left Garak's face. "First we need to address more pressing matters. The people's basic needs are not being met. I fear the situation may deteriorate if something isn't done soon."
"Why are you telling me this I have no power. I can't even keep Alliance Clone Troopers from harassing my son on his way home from what passes for a school. " Damar grumbled.
"Something simply must be done. The people looked to you for guidance. You are their leader whether you like it or not." Garak persisted.
"I'm tired. I need some sleep." Damar said before he stormed out.
"Damar," Kira called but he was already gone.
"You should talk with him, Commander. Make him see reason." Garak said.
"What makes you think he'll listen to me?" Kira said.
"Commander, really, I never took you for a fool," Garak said his smile widening. He glanced down at the pad in his hands. "Look at the time. I must be along." He wisely departed before he suffered Kira's wrath for pointing out the obvious.
Kira stood there dumbfounded for a moment. Could she be falling in love with Damar of all people? The very thought was ludicrous, wasn't it?
"Zek's real will. He left my brother Rom in charge," Quark said in disbelief passing the handwritten price of flimsy to Alliance Special Envoy to Ferenginar Ralph Offenhouse.
"Interesting," Offenhouse said giving the flimsy a quick read. "Be a dear Gahnava go have this document authenticated." He handed the scroll to his red-haired Orion lover.
"At once, Ralphie," Gahnava said using one of her many pet names for Offenhouse.
"Please, not in public dear," Offenhouse said Gahnava grinned wickedly as she swung her hips at him and walked away.
Quark sat down on a gaudily decorated chair deeply disappointed. It had taken months of searching the Nagal vaults but finally, they had found Zek's will (thank profit Zek was so old fashioned he physically backed up important documents) only to learn he had been passed over for, Rom!? What a revolting development.
"Tough break, pal. I know your heart was set on being the next Nagus" Leck said patting Quark on his back.
"Thank you," Quark mumbled as the liquidator moved off.
"Look at it this way, you still have the bar," Pel said cheerily. "Plus, Rom will need help if he ever wants to clean up the mess Brunt left behind."
"Great I'm still a bartender and now an advisor to my idiot brother." Quark lamented.
"And you have me," Pel said draping her arms around the seated Quark.
"You mean?" Quark said hopefully.
"Ferenginar is liberated. Draw up a marriage contract and if I approve I'm all yours." Pel said.
"Hey, why do we need a contract? I thought you're a modern female." Quark questioned.
"I am but I'm also a Ferengi. I have to keep one eye on my financial future." Pel said which caused them both to laugh.
February 2376 C.E
Victoria Falls in Africa on Earth, afternoon
"I now pronounce you man and wife. You may kiss." Kirk said beaming. Officiating over Riker and Troi's wedding was a welcome change of pace after years of war. To thunderous applause, William and Deanna kissed the falls provided a spectacular backdrop to the scene Riker in his black tuxedo and Deanna in her flowing white gown.
"We best get ready," Obi-wan said loosening his robes beside him his wife Satine who loosened her dress accordingly.
"Get ready for what?" Anakin asked.
"To disrobe, of course. Betazoid tradition calls for nudity at weddings guests included, Anakin." Obi-wan said.
"You're joking, right?" A shocked Ahsoka said.
"He isn't joking," Geordi said who stood nearby with Barriss and Data.
"Indeed, nudity at private celebrations is an important aspect of Betazoid cultural." Data said.
"C'mon, Ani and Ashoka it'll be fun," Padme said elbowing Anakin in his ribs.
"If you say so," Anakin mumbled.
While everyone was enjoying the reception which had evolved into an impromptu celebration ( it was the first time everyone had been together in one place since the war ended, save for Bashir who was still with his group in the Gamma Quadrant) Captain Sisko wondered off by himself. He was deep in thought when everything around him shifted. He was no longer in an African forest resort but rather the featureless white plane which the Prophets called home.
"Why have you brought me here?" He called out. "I demand your answer me!"
Suddenly Sisko's mother or more precisely the Prophet who had possessed his mother appeared before him. "Your task has reached completion, my son. The Kosst Amojan and their allies have failed in their mission because of your efforts and those of your friends." She said.
"Task, what task, are you talking about the war or my life?" Sisko said.
"You have walked the path the Prophets have laid out for you, Benjamin." She said.
"I demanded to be returned to my reality," Sisko said angrily.
"That is impossible, my son. When you struck the bargain with the Prophets to stop the Dominion Fleet from entering what you call the Alpha Quadrant you were told there would be a price for such interference in corporeal matters, this is that price. Your penance is that you must leave behind the mortal plane so the game can continue unaffected by your presence." She said.
"This isn't fair," Sisko raged.
"Perhaps, but it has been decided." Qui-Gon Jinn said appearing next to the female Prophet. "I am to be your guide, Benjamin. I promise I'll make your transition as easy as possible."
"I've seen you before in my dreams, or were they visions? Who are you?" Sisko asked.
"My name is Qui-Gon Jinn. I was a Jedi Master you've met two of my students - Obi-wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker" Qui-Gon Jinn said putting his arm on Sisko's shoulder. "Come there is much to learn."
No one ever discovered the fate of Captain Benjamin Sisko. His disappearance from a crowded party with many of the finest the Alliance in attendance became a great mystery of the 24th Century. He left behind his wife Kasidy and a soon to be born daughter Rebecca Jae Sisko.
Enterprise-E in orbit around Earth
Unlike most of his senior officers, Commodore Jean-Luc Picard had not been invited to Riker and Troi's wedding. He sat alone on the Enterprise bridge with a skeletal crew of young fresh-faced officers. Doctor Beverly Crusher had tried to convince him to attend the ceremony as her plus one but he politely declined. He would not impose upon the happy couple he had done enough to them already.
All at once Picard sensed a familiar and unwelcome presence. "Q," Picard said putting down his cup of Earl Grey tea on the armrest of his command chair.
"Don't get up on my account, mon Capitan." Said Q who was clad in the same crimson and obsidian robes he had worn during the "trial" of Picard's crew and again during the last time they had seen each other.
"What do you want Q?" Picard said jumping to his feet as he ignored Q's words.
Q pointed to the main viewscreen which displayed a massive fleet of starships of a dizzying variety which were fighting against a gigantic swarm of Species 8472 bio-ships. The bio-ships were so numerous they all but blotted out the surrounding area. These bio-ships originated from some sort of massive thing which resembled a slowly rotating starfish. "Consider yourself honored Picard. I've brought you to a pivotal event in the history of the universe, the Battle of Wild Space. This is where the Alliance, the New Republic, and the First Order engage the Undine or Yuuzhan Vong or Species 8472 take your pick of whichever name you prefer."
"What is wrong with the space in this region?" Picard could not help but ask upon noticing how the space appeared to be more green-tinged matter than true spacial void.
"Oh, that, well you see the Undine or Vong can't exist long-term in normal space so they are altering this region to make it more hospitable so it fits their needs. Their alteration of normal space into fluidic space is a prelude to an invasion of nigh unfathomable scale." Q said.
"Why did you bring me here?" Picard asked as the ship rocked violently causing Picard's teacup to fall onto the floor and shatter.
"To warn you. If your little forces lose these parasites will spread throughout the universe annihilating all other lifeforms." Q said. "Consider this a friendly warning from the Continuum."
"What am I supposed to do about this matter?' Picard demanded to know.
"That's for you to discover on your own Jean-Luc. I can't do everything for you," Q said wagging his finger at Picard. "But for now I recommend you wake up!" Q screamed in Picard's face.
"Are you alright sir?" Picard heard a voice say when he came to himself again.
"What?" Picard asked.
"Are you alright, sir?" The young male human ensign repeated. "You dozed off for a minute there sir and we couldn't wake you. We were worried." All around Picard stood the bridge crew of junior officers concerned expressions on their faces.
"I'm fine," Picard said waving them off. In fact, he was anything but fine. Q's vision (or had it really been a dream?), had seriously unnerved him. Whatever it had been he would consult with his crew and then Starfleet Command, just in case it wasn't a dream but a true premonition of a possible dire future.
"Huh," Picard said noticing his teacup was shattered on the floor. "Have we passed through any unexpected turbulence?"
"No sir, our orbit around Earth has been smooth." The Ensign from before answered now back at his station.
"Thank you, Ensign, carry on." Picard looked back down at the cup his mind more troubled than ever.
To Be Continued
Next – The first of two major time skips which will eventually bring us to the events of "The Force Unleashed/Rebels" and then "Rogue One/A New Hope".
Author's Note -
I decided to combine the Yuuzhan Vong and Undine into one as they are so similar and the Vong are technically non-canon so I have some wiggle room with my interpretation of them. The Undine/Vong plot is why the Voyager Episode Scorpion Part I is the only instance when I repeated events close to how they unfolded in canon. I could not think of a better way to establish this future threat as the Undine characterization during their first appearance is both extremely frightening and effective.