Starfleet Command

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Danielle Atarah, Kalina Zett | A villain's outrage

Posted on 241709.27 @ 4:29am by Danielle Atarah

Mission: Non-Plot Log
Location: Earth

The shuttle approached carefully, Zett at its helm, landing it so softly on the roof of the building, Dani, who knew the machine inside and out, barely felt the thump of the metal touching the landing pad. She gave Zett a pensive look, but said nothing, a trace of a knowing smile decorating the edges of her lips.

The door opened from the outside, a guard sweeping the area, and Zett, still silent, rose from her seat and lurched towards the exit. Dani threw the shell of the hypospray she’s used for her headache into the replicator. She wasn’t entirely sure what was in it, but whatever the Doctor prescribed, it was an almost instant relief. She appreciated that tonight more than usual, giving Zett an appraising look.

“What?” The Trill finally said, holding the lift’s doors open for Dani.

“You’re… uncharacteristically quiet.”

“Am I.” Zett muttered, allowing the doors to close. Dani bit her lip. Zett tapped her foot on the floor. Dani looked at her, patiently, waiting. The doors opened. Zett took a breath and walked out, pulling her jacket off and tossing it towards the closet. She missed, but it didn’t really seem like she expected it to magically get in and hang itself.

Dani stood at the entrance, raising her eyebrows. Zett stopped, shaking her head with a grunt.

“What do you want me to say, Dani?”

Dani tilted her head and lifted her eyebrows, shrugging. She knew what the Trill was angry about, but it will not be solved by putting more words into the woman’s mouth. Zett gave her an exasperated look.

“Are all Starfleet officers this… cartoonishly noble?” Zett exclaimed, and Dani smirked, despite herself, holding back a chuckle. She wanted to say “yes” but that, while being somewhat true, would not have been conducive to calming the Trill down.

“I thought it went fairly well, considering.”

“Oh,” Zett turned on her heels, giving Dani a mockingly bewildered look, “Do you? Well? Which part, Dani?” Dani bit her lip. Zett shook her head, as if to encourage the woman to answer, but continued speaking herself.

“Which part? The part where she suggested we’re a cartoon depiction of criminals living on the mystical dark “other side” that her perfect existence, or the part where she questioned my legitimacy to call this planet home?” Zett stared, and Dani had to hold herself back from smiling. Zett had a point, but the anger was misplaced. Starfleet builds many things in people, but one of the most notable is quite an expansive state of entitlement, especially when it comes to morality. She was used to it. She had to remind herself that the Trill was not.

“It wasn’t that bad,” She tried, and Zett’s eyebrows rose so high up her forehead, they looked like they were about to detach.

“That-- that bad? A Starfleet Admiral telling me I’m fucking insignificant, and all but hinting that I just took over this world like a second rate villain from a bad superhero movie -- that’s ‘not that bad’?”

“Z,” Dani started, her smile betraying her, stretching on her lips. “Come on. She’s in charge of security for the whole quadrant. What do you expect her to do? Say ‘Yo, criminal enterprise I can’t control -- welcome to my back yard, please, enjoy my tea.’”

“You mean my back yard.” Zett fired back, looking at Dani. She was angry, clearly, but her eyes had no actual malice, her anger concentrated on the evening’s dinner. She saw Dani’s smile and grunted, shaking her head, allowing a small smile of her own to decorate her lips.

“She really does think she owns this planet, doesn’t she?”

“They all do,” Dani smiled. “It’s what we’re taught in Starfleet. The Federation is all knowing and all good, and has eradicated crime for the past 400 years. Yay for peace and prosperity, yadda yadda.”

Zett snorted in disbelief, looking at Dani as if expecting the woman to exclaim she’s actually kidding and take it all back. A second passed, and her disbelief morphed into a mix between anger, astonishment, and pity.


“Pretty much.” Dani nodded, coming closer to the Trill, reaching to straighten the crumpled collar of her shirt.

“I… I mean crime has existed throughout those 400 years, D, it… I am not the first to-- I mean.” Dani’s smile was steady and cool, and Zett noticed it with a sigh. “Wow.”

“Yeah.” Dani chuckled, keeping her arms at the woman’s shoulders, looking up at her with an amused smile. “So, you see, overall, it went well.”

“She thinks she owns this planet.” Zett grunted, annoyed again, giving Dani a bewildered look.

“Kal,” Dani’s smile softened, “Why do you care? Let her think whatever she wants.”

“What--” The Trill exclaimed, offended, recoiling from Dani as if the smaller woman just suggested they eat raw slugs in snot juice.

“Kal, I have other sources, seriously, we don't have to get her to cooperate, we're within the law as far as everyone is officially concerned, she can’t do anyth--”

“Yeah, I don’t care.” Zett shot back, but Dani noted she was smiling, her eyes bright.

Dani’s own eyes narrowed. “Z, I know this look. Please tell me you’re not going to do anything stupid.”

“I don’t do stupid, Dani. Where’s my-- ah, there it is.” She walked to her fallen jacket and extracted a small PADD, tapping it for a few seconds. Dani stared at her, unsure if she should be amused still, or worried.

“Kal, developing sources is a patience game, you play to their strengths, encourage the--”

“This isn’t a ‘source’, Dani. This is an Admiral thinking we’re a group of petty criminals with delusions of grandeur. An Admiral who might decide she doesn’t want to like us anymore.”

“So what…?”

“So what? So this is my planet, Dani. My planet even if I wasn’t born here or my species haven’t evolved here,” Zett spat angrily, “I’ve called this planet home longer than that Admiral or the one before or the one after. I’ve seen organizations rise and fall and do unspeakable things right under the precious Federation and Starfleet’s noses. I’ve been around, and I won’t have a Starfleet fucking Admiral telling me that this isn’t my planet.”

Dani cleared her throat, not sure what to say to that. Zett ignored her and pressed a button on the PADD. It beeped, connecting the call to Mira, Zett’s assistant.

Dani blinked. “What are you doing?”

“Making a point. Mira,” She shifted her attention to the girl and gave Dani a satisfied look, her anger transforming almost immediately to a mischievously plotting smile. Dani wasn’t sure she liked that one on Zett. “I need you to prepare a general request to all my businesses, suppliers, buyers and anyone else who considers themselves a friend of the Organization.”

That, Dani knew, was code for ‘an order’ that encompassed ‘everyone who knew what’s good for them’. “Kal…” she started, but Zett waved her off with a gesture, her smile growing in satisfaction. Even Mira noticed through the video connection, narrowing her eyes as she nodded.

“Admiral Indira Hawk and-- wait, does she have a family?”

“Uh,” Dani nodded, suspicious, “a wife and a son, both in the fleet.”

“Perfect. Who am I to discriminate,” she smirked, and restarted her dictation to the bewildered Mira, the winning expression climbing into her eyes, “Admiral Indira Hawk, and her family, are from now on to be considered my personal and valued guests at all and any establishment, anywhere in the Solar System that they go that appreciates my business.” She winked, and shifted her stance, her shoulders straightening. “Write that down and send it along the common channels to our sources in the entire system, will you Mira? I’d like to see this in effect as soon as possible,” the Trill finished, the mischievous smile completing its maturation into a complete and awe inspiring “who’s gawn’ mess with me” smile that swam in her eyes, stretched her spine upwards, and made her look five feet taller.

“The Admiral is going to see just how far this ‘outsider’ who ‘is on the other side’ has fucking reach.” Zett smiled coldly, but her eyes danced with pleasure. Dani smiled, shaking her head slowly.

“That’s… will make a point. Not necessarily the right point, but… a point. It will definintely drive her crazy. And she will probably take this as a sign to be even more suspicious of us.”

“Make her crazy?” Zett’s smile tilted sideways, and Dani saw herself in it, lopsided, smartassy. “I’m being so nice. She’s already suspicious, D. At least now she’ll be suspicious and informed.”

Dani laughed. Zett sighed in satisfaction and walked towards Dani, and then past her. Dani blinked, turning. “Where are you going?”

The Trill turned at the hallway and smiled, not stopping. “I’m going to take a bath and relax. A royal bath, deserving of the Queen of Niceness that I am.”

Dani chuckled, shaking her head, realizing she wasn’t the only one to be affected by their connection. It went both ways. It was weird. And epic. And magnificent. With a grin that was a pure mix of amusement and pride, she turned on her heels and hopped through the hallway, following Zett.

They didn't wait for the hot water to run.


Danielle Atarah
Earth Syndicate

Kalina Zett
Earth Syndicate


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