And so it continues. My thanks to ByaSouthernLady and thyme2read, as well as Tazzy88. Feedback is always appreciated. Please enjoy.

First Officer's Personal Log
Stardate: N/A

This shift began like any other. I awoke, dressed, ate in the officer's mess, and then arrived on the bridge in ample time to relieve the night duty officer and to take my place at my captain's side. In the short time since I have embarked on my military career, I have been very fortunate to serve under such a skilled strategist. The captain has even commended my performance on several past occasions. Only recently, he has told me that it will not be long before I receive a command of my own.

Today will mark the 200th day of our patrol. We are, to mimic our new Vulcan allies, precisely 20 days past our scheduled maintenance refit and overhaul. Our recent entry into the Dominion war, precipitated by the treacherous assassination of Senator Vreenak by Dominion agents, has extended our patrol indefinitely. The Imperial Romulan Warbird, the Serpent's Tooth, is in a state of vigilant combat readiness. We are prepared to serve the Empire in whatever capacity is necessary.

End Entry.


First Officer's Personal Log
Stardate: N/A

We have just received a important directive from The Romulan High Command. Tal Shiar operatives intercepted a communication from Starfleet Command to their starships patrolling this sector. A Dominion agent is reported to be traveling from Earth on board a passenger vessel known to be operating in this area. Their successful capture would provide the High Command and the Tal Shiar with important intelligence on Dominion military activities. We have been ordered to alter course and proceed at the highest possible speed to the target coordinates.

End Entry.


First Officer's Personal Log
Stardate: N/A

We are still on course to our target. New information is trickling in a little at a time. We now know the vessel's name. It is the Gasping Dolphin. What peculiar names the Federation has for their ships!

The captain has requested that I take the lead on this and so I and the other bridge officers have been planning the mission using all of the information and tools at our disposal.

End Entry.


First Officer's Personal Log
Stardate: N/A

The Dominion agent is a Founder! The Tal Shiar has positively confirmed that one of the elusive shape-shifters is almost within our grasp. Its capture will advance Romulan intelligence far past that of the Federation and our other "allies." No doubt, the High Command will share intelligence with the others but the glory of the capture will belong to us.

End Entry.


First Officer's Personal Log
Stardate: N/A

Crew morale is high. This may be a dangerous mission, but there will be rewards and glory for all involved. After completion, no member of this crew need be concerned about career advancement. We will be welcome on any ship in the fleet. In fact, if the nature of our mission were widely known, many of the other warbirds would gladly compete for our prize. The captain has spoken to the High Command and, with victory, we have been promised an extended shore leave on a planet of his choosing.

End Entry.


First Officer's Personal Log
Stardate: N/A

We know that the Federation possesses the same information as we do. We also know that we are closer to the ship than any of their craft. Our attack must be quick and concise. We do not expect any damage to the ship as all Federation passenger vessels are unarmed.

We will drop out of warp directly in front of them firing our weapons only enough to bring them to a standstill. Then, I and a company of centurions will beam aboard and apprehend the Founder. In an attack, the captain of the Gasping Dolphin will move all of the passengers to the observation deck for safety and as an attempt to convince the attacking ship as to the nature of his cargo.

We now await only a description of the shape-shifter.

End Entry.


First Officer's Personal Log
Stardate: N/A

There is no description.

The Romulan High Command does not know what the Founder looks like. The Tal Shiar has analyzed every fragment of the original communication but they were not able to determine the shape-shifter's identity. They were not forthcoming on why, but based upon my military experience, I suspect the original communication was incomplete.

However, the captain has informed us that the mission will continue. The High Command has assured him that they have absolute confidence in his abilities and in the capabilities of the Serpent's Tooth.

End Entry.


First Officer's Personal Log
Stardate: N/A

The captain has informed me that just as the High Command has confidence in him, so he also has the utmost confidence in his first officer. He has intimated that a successful resolution to this mission will guarantee that I get my own ship.

Even with the new intel, our basic plan is unchanged. We will board the ship as planned and look for the person who is out of place. It is true that the shape-shifter can change form but its best defense will be to keep its current form and blend in with the rest of the passengers. In a crisis situation everyone makes mistakes, we will try to force its hand. The chance of failure is higher, but we have surprise on our side.

We have the Gasping Dolphin on our scanners. We are closing fast. It is almost time.

End Entry.


First Officer's Personal Log
Stardate: N/A

Where did it all go wrong?

We followed the mission almost exactly as planned. The captain added some brilliant last minute improvisations. First, he instructed the transporter officer to beam my team in close by and among the passengers. He also ordered the weapons officer to make certain to disable the passenger vessel's universal translator along with the standard communications. The passengers would only hear us speak Romulan. We would be able to inject more chaos into the situation and make our prize reveal itself.

The Serpent's Tooth dropped out of warp and opened fire. We beamed in. The transporter officer took his orders almost too enthusiastically.

I materialized right in front of a very beautiful Human female. I could have reached out and touched her. She had blond silken hair and sky blue eyes. She was a figure of above average beauty - my suspicions were aroused immediately. Why would a person of such obvious beauty and breeding be traveling on a run-down vessel such as this? No Romulan parent would even consider such a prospect. However, I reserved judgment. Human parents might allow such a thing. But, my already low opinion of them sank a little further.

She kissed me! I could not believe my luck. The success of this mission, I freely admit, was never very high. I was under no illusion as to what happens to people the High Command is displeased with. With the war we might not die, but we might wish for it. And, now, my prey was practically throwing itself into my hands. But, still I did nothing overt. Again, I have heard that cultural standards on Earth are different. There was the slimmest chance that this might not be the shape-shifter.

I stepped away and glanced over the crowd, deliberately exposing my back to the female. It was not a great risk, as the Centurions were watching, but the appearance was there. As I moved away, I felt a hand much like a talon grasp me around the ankle and pull me down to the floor. Turning, it was as I suspected, the changeling had unmasked itself. It still looked like a beautiful blonde but I now knew what bloodthirsty intelligence and cunning lay beneath that beauty.

I called to my centurions and they rushed over and took her into custody. I stood before it and informed it that Romulans are not as easily fooled as the Federation. It stared at me still playing the innocent. I was surprised. I expected more resistance, but perhaps, these Founders are not as intelligent as noted, or perhaps, it was playing a waiting game. Its possible intent made my blood run cold.

We beamed out.

Once we were safely aboard the Serpent's Tooth, the captain jumped us to high warp. We did not want be around when or if the Federation arrived. The other vessel was not heavily damaged and could get under way shortly - minus one passenger.

I had breathed a deep sigh of relief that it had all worked out. I started to take another one. I stopped in mid-breath.

The transporter officer reported that the patterns showed nothing extraordinary. Only normal Romulan and Human patterns were there. The pattern analysis should have detected an anomaly. Something! There was still a chance, though. I extracted a vial from my pocket and grabbing its hand in mine, pricked its finger drawing blood.

Blood!

Not shape-shifter DNA or weird material, just... Simple. Ordinary. Human blood. We had failed. I had failed.

I escorted her to a cabin, placed her within, and posted a guard. I went off alone to face the captain.

He was not pleased. How can we salvage this? We have attacked a Federation vessel and kidnapped one of their citizens. If the Lady had been a shape-shifter, our actions could probably be excused. We can probably get away with producing no Founder as long as we can satisfactorily explain things to the Romulan High Command. We also need to find a way to convince our new prisoner to stay on board of her own free will and not cause us any trouble. After all, it would raise a lot of questions if we caught up to the Gasping Dolphin in order to return their missing passenger. We'd have to attack it again!

I sense that my command has slipped away - maybe forever.

What happened?

End Entry.


First Officer's Personal Log - Supplemental
Stardate: N/A

Earth Girls Are Crazy!

End Entry.


Close Log.