Star Trek: Odyssey 23: Where Mortals Are Forbidden

And when he gets to Heaven, to Saint Peter he will tell: One more soldier reporting in, sir. I've served my time in Hell.

Captain's Log: Stardate: 58729.0: According to our initial reports, the Terran Empire had planned their final assault on Earth at the end of the year. However, due to the defection of the Mirror Tuvok, we have received information that the Empire has moved up their attack to a few days from now. Starfleet has ordered most of the fleet to Sector Zero Zero One. We are however en route to Deep Space Nine to lead the Ninth, Tenth and Eleventh fleets to Earth. However, the Twelfth, Thirteenth, Fourteenth and Fifteenth fleets are currently missing as there is no idea as to their whereabouts. Those four fleets could be the difference in this battle and the final outcome of this war.

The Alexandria dropped out of warp in the Bajor sector near Deep Space Nine. Over two thousand starships littered the area around the former Cardassian station. Some were docked at the docking ring, while others were docked at the upper and lower pylons. The rest of the ships orbited the station. Captain Allensworth stood up from his command chair.

"Hoshi, hail Deep Space Nine."

Hoshi pressed a few buttons on her console and a few seconds later, the image of Captain Benjamin Sisko appeared.Captain Sisko disappeared in the fire caves of Bajor in the days following the Dominion war. He had fought the Cardassian Gul Dukat and together they fell into the fire caves where Dukat was sent to the Pah Wraiths and Sisko was taken by the Bajoran Prophets. After six years of being with the Prophets, Sisko had finally returned and taken over as commander of Deep Space Nine.

"Ah, Captain Allensworth." Sisko said. "The fleet is ready for departure."

"Good. We'll leave in six hours." Allensworth said.

Sisko nodded. "We'll be ready then and then we'll put an end to this war."

"I like the way you think, Captain. Alexandria out."

The screen switched back to the view of the station and of the many starships surrounding it. Commander Sparhawk got up from his chair and headed for the turbolift. He saw one of the starships docked at the station was the Challenger. He headed for the transporter room to beam over to the station.

Shortly later, Lieutenant Liz Dowler walked into Quark's bar that was crowded with mostly gray and black uniforms from all three divisions. She ordered a drink from the bar and turned around to see if she knew anyone in the bar. She felt as if she was the only one from the Alexandria in the bar. She heard the sound of a glass being set down on the bar behind her. She turned around to see Quark letting go of the glass.

"Here's your glass, Lieutenant." The Ferengi said.

"Thank you." She said right before taking a sip of her raktajino. Quark walked off inputting commands into his PADD. She continued looking around for someone she knew. She saw Commander Sparhawk sitting with a female she assumed was his fiancé. A slight hint of defeat entered her thoughts because she did find the first officer attractive but she knew it was just a slight crush. She continued to scan the room and saw Captain Allensworth sitting alone. She walked over to him and he looked up at her.

"Yes, Lieutenant?" He asked.

"Well sir, I was wondering if I could join you." She said.

"Please." He said pointing to the seat, giving her his permission to do so. She pulled out the chair and sat down. There was silence between them for a few seconds before Liz came up with something to talk about.

"So, do you think we'll come out of this on top, sir?"

"Yes I do, Lieutenant." He said. "Even more so now that Captain Sisko with us." Jermaine looked at Liz investigating the look on her face. "Are you not as sure, Liz?"

Liz was a bit surprised by the captain using her first name. She nodded. "Yes, sir. This has been a close war and we've been lucky so far but there have been people who haven't been as lucky. The last battle at the El-Adrel system was way too close for my comfort and it just seems that as of lately all the Federation has been doing is engage retreat engage retreat. It just doesn't seem like we're going to win this war."

Jermaine knew and understood her concern. He actually shared the same view as her and he was also worried about the outcome of this war and this battle in particular. He stared down at his drink and rotated the glass on the table.

Liz saw that her captain looked troubled about this whole situation and how much a reality that defeat could become unless they stopped their mirror counterparts.

"Are you going to still be in command of the fleet or are they giving Captain Sisko command?" Liz asked changing the subject slightly.

"I'll still be leading this fleet. Captain Merriell of the Syracuse is in command of the fleet in the Terran System and we still have no word on Captain Stork and his fleets. The last reported location of those four fleets was the Argelius sector."

"Is it possible that they were destroyed by the Empire?" Liz asked.

Jermaine shrugged. "It's possible but we should've heard something about it. There would've been survivors. Or if there weren't then Empire would've been bragging about it or something. Like I said, we should've heard something."

"What if it's another battle site like Mirai battle site?" Liz asked.

"It's completely possible. As Ambassador Spock as said many times: there are always possibilities."

The Mirai battle site was a battlefield from the Dominion War where not a single crewmember from any starship on either side survived. It wasn't until last year was when it was discovered by the Alexandria. It was also that time when the Alexandria was sucked into an anomaly and sent to an alternate 2165. It was then they had added crewmembers to their ship's compliment including Julia McKenzie and Hoshi Sato.

The Mirai battle site has been turned into a memorial for the participants of the Dominion war just as Wolf 359 was turned into one for the lives lost in the battle against the Borg.

Jermaine felt the slight vibration of his comm. badge as well as the small chirping sound it made when it activated.

"Alexandria to Captain Allensworth." M'Ress said.

"Go ahead." He said tapping his comm. badge.

"We just received word from the Syracuse. The Terran Empire has begun its assault on Earth and our ships are severely outnumbered."

Allensworth shot Liz a glance. Urgency was spread all over his face. He stood up and tapped his comm. badge again, ending the conversation with M'Ress. He then called out into the air, to activate the intercom on Deep Space Nine.

"Allensworth to all Starfleet personnel. Report to your ships, we are moving out at once."