Full summary: It's been two months since the Enterprise's encounter with Khan, two months that they have spent exploring the neighboring regions of space. But when they are recalled to Earth suddenly for an additional mission, Kirk and his crew are once again pulled into a high stakes conflict. Khan is resuscitated in an attempt to even the odds in the Enterprise's favor, something that has the potential to be a mistake of epic proportions. But when Khan finds himself drawn to Elaria, a young woman with a bitter history of her own, the possibility for redemption may not be so far-fetched.
A/N: Welcome, everyone, to Elaria. My first attempt at Star Trek fic of any kind, but I think it's okay, all things considered. This version has been imported from my fanfiction account, so there might be some slight differences between that original version and this one (nothing big, just spelling and punctuation, mostly).
Regarding the story: As mentioned in the summary, this is a KhanxOC fic. The OC is Elaria, who was concocted entirely by me and isn't based on any persons real, fictional, et cetera (the same goes for the world Karitana and its people, etc; I made them, they're based only on the workings of my imagination and so on). She doesn't actually arrive until the tail end of Chapter 3, but the plot set-up in these first couple chapters is just as important as she is, so please bear with me. Also, Khan comes into the story much sooner, and he is, most likely, the real reason you're reading this fic. XD Anyway, reviews are, as always, greatly appreciated. I try to respond to all reviews, eventually, because the feedback really is important to me.
Alright-y, I'm gonna shut up now. Enjoy the story. :D
"Okay, so remind me why we're doing this?"
Spock cast his captain a look that was both exasperated and amused. "Because we were ordered to do so by Starfleet Command."
Kirk made a rude sound. "Yes. But we were on our way to explore an uncharted planet, Spock. Whatever this guy wants, it can't possible be as important as that."
"Starfleet Command seems to disagree," Spock remarked.
"Yeah, they do that a lot." But Kirk's tone was only a little annoyed; despite his wildcard nature and tendency to ignore the rules, he held the Federation in high regard. "Well, whatever. Let's go see what this guy wants. Kirk stepped into the lift that would take them to the top floor, where their 'client' was waiting. "What's his name again?"
"Vartik," Spock answered promptly. "Of the Class M planet Karitana."
"Right," Kirk said. And then the lift arrived, and they stepped out.
They first took in their surroundings, an office that was sparsely yet tastefully furnished; a practical workspace. Then they saw the man whose space this was. At first, he stood with his back to them, which made Kirk uncomfortable; he liked to be able to see someone's face, look into their eyes, when he spoke to them.
"You're here," Vartik said, his voice low yet resonant.
"Starfleet personnel are encouraged to be punctual," Spock said matter-of-factly.
Vartik nodded once, then turned to face them. Kirk saw that he had dark hair and golden eyes; he couldn't be sure in the dim lighting, but the man's pupils appeared to be slitted like those of a cat."You've been sent here," the Karitani man continued, "in accordance with a bargain I have made with Starfleet Command."
Kirk exchanged a look with his First Officer. "The details of this bargain being what exactly?"
Vartik took a deep breath. "The U.S.S. Enterprise and its crew has been assigned as protection for my daughter's passage from Earth to Karus, the Karitani colony world."
"Bodyguard duty?" Kirk said, letting his disbelief show.
"After ensuring the safe arrival of my daughter to Karus," Vartik continued, as if he hadn't heard Kirk, "the Enterprise will proceed to Karitana itself, and serve as a neutral party in the negotiations between my people and our war-hungry neighbors, the Rhovishans. It is this ambassadorial endeavour that enticed your Command; since Karus is on the way to Karitana, I simply convinced them to include my daughter's safe passage into the mission parameters."
"How opportunistic of you," Spock said.
"I want my daughter safe," the other man said sharply. "I would do far worse to ensure her well-being, and why shouldn't I?"
The Vulcan made no comment.
"Who's your daughter?" Kirk asked.
"Her name is Jaylira," Vartik answered, retrieving a small photo from his desk drawer.
Kirk took it and examined the subject. A slender young woman with long blonde hair and green eyes (traits that presumably came from her mother), he recognized her immediately. "Your daughter is JayJay?"
Spock arched a brow, giving him a disbelieving look. "Do you know her, Captain?"
"Well, not personally, no," he responded. "But everyone's heard of her, she's gotten pretty famous. Some pop star sensation, right?" He look to Vartik for confirmation.
"Yes," he said, lips pursed. "My daughter is the singer known by the moniker JayJay. She's recently received several disturbing threats, and her mother and I decided it would be best for her to leave Earth for a time. Since the timing of this coincides with our need for an intermediary on Karitana, we decided to 'kill two birds with one stone', as the human saying goes."
Kirk felt that there was more to it than that, but what good would interrogating the man do? Starfleet had already assigned them to do this; reporting to Vartik had simply been to acquire the exact details of the mission, given the 'sensitive' nature of the assignment.
"Where is your daughter now?" he asked.
"JayJay, over here!" A bright camera flash.
"Can you comment on your withdrawal from the Sensations Tour this summer?" another reporter asked."Are rumors of your going into rehab true?"
"JayJay, we have a fan club wanting your autographs." That was her manager, shadowing her as usual. "And someone from Starfleet should be here soon to pick you up for your transport to Karus."
She nodded slightly, then focused on smiling brightly at the crowds, shaking hands and kissing cheeks as she made her way over to the waiting fans.
She was only halfway through signing pictures, posters, and t-shirts when they came up to her. Dressed in Starfleet uniforms, they could only be her new babysitters. She flashed a dazzling smile. "Hello."
The lead one returned her smile, though his companion did not. "Hi," he said. "I'm Captain Kirk, of the starship Enterprise. This is Mr. Spock, my First Officer."
Mr. Spock simply nodded in greeting.
"I assume your father has filled you in?" Kirk asked.
She suppressed her irritation at the situation, and her father's overreaction to it. "Yes, he has. Is it time to go?"
Captain Kirk nodded. "It is." He moved to take her by the elbow, and then all hell broke loose.
An energy blast flew through the air, exploding into the crowd barely two feet from where they'd been standing. It was quickly followed by several more. Kirk shoved her to the ground immediately, pulling out a phaser even as he protected her from further shots.
"Spock?" he shouted.
"I am unharmed, Captain."
"Good." Kirk looked back to her. "What about you?" he asked her. "Are you hurt?"
Too shocked to speak, she simply shook her head.
Kirk nodded. "Good," he repeated. "Spock, stay with her. I'm gonna go track down our party-crasher."
"Captain," Spock said, "that would be most unwise. Confronting this assassin on your own is extremely-"
"Relax, Spock." he clapped his friend on the shoulder. "I got this. Guard the girl."
The Vulcan didn't look convinced, but gave no further objections. What he did do was relocate them to a position behind a pillar when there was a short pause in the volley of shots."Stay down," he ordered, and she complied without argument; staying out of sight was clearly the better option, since this madman with the heavy firepower was evidently after her.
Kirk rushed through the frenzied crowd, intent on locating the man responsible for this carnage. Whoever it was, they clearly hadn't cared about the innocent bystanders around Jaylira. Hell, maybe that sort of bloodshed was what he'd been after; JayJay as the target, but with mass casualties to make it seem a simple terrorist attack. If mass slaughter could be considered simple.
He saw another volley of shots fly through the air, and tracking the trajectory saw where the shooter must be firing from; a window in a skyscraper that was empty and undergoing renovations. He slammed through the door and began pounding up the stairs, since the lift was clearly out of operation. He reached the floor the shooter was on, paused to catch his breath, then rushed in.
He had to jump to the side almost at once as a series of shots flashed towards him. He returned fire, but his opponent avoided the blasts as if they were gently tossed snowballs.
The assassin appeared to be in his early thirties, with sandy blonde hair and hazel eyes. That was all Kirk had time to notice before the other man opened fire on him again. Kirk just barely ducked behind a partially demolished wall before the shots tore into him.
He waited for a moment, then leaned out, phaser set to stun. But the other man was no longer where he'd been, a previously closed door swinging open to indicate the direction he'd gone.
His communicator chirped. "Captain," Spock's voice came through, "are you there?"
"Yeah, I'm here." He jogged over to the door and looked out.
"Have you subdued the attacker?"
"Uh...no." To his dismay, the blonde man was nowhere to be seen, and the hall split in three directions, and had a staircase. "He's gone." Then he noticed that the security camera above the stairwell was still functional, and smiled. "But there should be security footage of him; we can get an ID and run him down that way."
A long pause, then "Understood, Captain. I will escort Jaylira to Vartik then join you at the security office."
"Sounds good. You be careful, though, okay? This is one tough bastard."
"Duly noted, sir."
Kirk knew his First Officer was more than capable of protecting himself, but he was still relieved when Spock arrived at the security office unharmed.
"No trouble on the way?" he asked.
"One more attempt was made on Vartik's daughter," Spock informed him, "but it was unsuccessful. She is at her father's safehouse now."
Kirk nodded. "Good work. She should be safe there until we go to pick her up." He turned back to the console he'd been working at. "I managed to isolate an image of his face; I was just about to run it through the system."
Spock said nothing, simply nodded.
It took only a moment. Then the computer screen became inundated with information, most of it designated CLASSIFIED. But Kirk saw one brief report that caught his eye.
Subject believed to be connected somehow to the break-in of Cryovault 17. Investigation currently underway, details unknown.
"Cryovault?" Kirk said out loud, looking over at Spock.
The Vulcan gave a slight shrug, then began a search through the system for further information. "It appears," Spock said after a moment, "that Cryovault 17 is where Khan and his crew were stored for their sentences of extended cryostasis."
Kirk didn't like where this was going. "And someone broke in?"
"Who? This guy?" He looked back at the photo and something occurred to him, something that made his breath catch in his throat and his stomach churn. The ease with which the blond man had avoided his phaser blasts, how inhumanly fast he'd been fleeing the scene... "Spock...what if he wasn't trying to break someone out of that vault. What if someone broke him out?"
The Vulcan looked equally disturbed, and quickly pulled up the current incident report for the break-in. "The investigation is underway as we speak...They have not finished their analysis, but it would appear that one cryotube is empty."
A/N: Thus ends the first chapter. Hope you liked it. Please review, even if all you type is a smiley face. :D Or a frowny face, if you so desire. XD
The next chapter should be up within a day or two, since all I need to do is edit the copy of the file imported from fanfiction.
See you next time!