|"The Price of Liberty"|
|Original post date:||2 January 2014|
|Previous story:||"The Price of Liberty (original)"|
|Next story:||"Line in the Sand"|
- The USS Leviathan responds to a distress call from the SS Break Even, but is attacked en route by a Klingon vessel hellbent on gaining an advantage in the war with the Federation.
A Starfleet vessel is under attack, near destruction, and the crew is doing their best to keep the ship in one piece. The captain orders Ensign Jason Fredricks to return fire on their foe, a Klingon Vor'cha battle cruiser. The operations officer informs the captain that structural integrity is failing, and the captain realizes the end is near. A volley of torpedoes fired by the Klingons strikes the Starfleet vessel, causing Jason's console to explode in his face. He suddenly wakes up in his apartment in San Francisco, realizing he was having a nightmare. He calms himself and returns to sleep.
Act I: Graduation Day
On stardate 82513.9, the Class of 2408 graduation ceremony is being held at Starfleet Academy. An admiral approaches the podium and begins thanking everyone for coming and the staff for hosting the event. Jason and his friend, Lucas Wells, are among those graduating. The admiral invites Jason up to give the valedictory. At first, Jason is a bit nervous, but he gains his composure after a few moments. Among those he thanks in the speech are Fleet Admiral Jorel Quinn and his parents. He concludes the speech, saying, "I've wanted to go out and explore the stars since I was just a kid, and now my dream is finally coming true. Thank you for helping me achieve my goal to become a Starfleet officer." He steps down from the podium, receiving a large round of applause from the crowd. The admiral begins naming the graduates and having them stand behind her. Once they are all on the stage, they turn to face the audience, taking a collective bow.
Jason reports to Lieutenant Ferra, the personnel officer at Starfleet Academy. Ferra tells him that Captain Masc Taggart wishes to speak with him in his office. Jason enters, and Taggart tells Jason that he wants him to be his tactical officer aboard the USS Leviathan. Jason is a bit surprised, but he accepts the position. Taggart then tells Jason to report to the shuttlebay and meet up with the other personnel.
Jason enters the shuttlebay and orders a drink at the bar in the lounge there. Another cadet named Daniel Harvey begins agitating him, comparing him to a child. Dylyp Azeli attempts to diffuse the situation, but is pushed away by Harvey. Jason begins to walk away when Harvey insults his father as a last resort to rile him up. It works, and Jason nearly strikes him, though he is stopped by a senior officer. Jason then boards the Zeus, a shuttle inbound for the Leviathan. On the shuttle, he meets some other recent graduates, Hannah Freeman, Ernie Hauser, Jhael Onika and Vance L'eher. They all gaze in awe at the sight of the Leviathan.
Act II: Klingons
Eight months have passed since graduation. Jason enters the mess hall and finds that his old friend, Lucas, has just been assigned to the Leviathan from the USS ShiKahr. They begin to discuss where their next assignment may be but are interrupted by a ship-wide announcement by Captain Taggart that they have just received a distress call from the SS Break Even.
The duo proceeds down a corridor when the first officer, Henry Fuller, asks where they are going. Jason tells him that they are headed for the bridge, and the three of them enter a turbolift. Jason introduces Lucas and Fuller to each other, and they exchange greetings.
When they reach the bridge, Taggart is waiting for them. Fuller tells him that Lucas is the new science officer, and Taggart directs Lucas to his station. Taggart then introduces Fuller to the rest of the bridge crew, with Ensign Pierce at conn and Ensign Koja at ops. Taggart then asks Fuller to fill in at communications due to the communications officer being on leave.
Pierce informs the captain that they are approaching the location of the Break Even, and Taggart gives the order to drop out of warp. Taggart asks Jason to scan for hostile vessels in the system. He soon discovers that a Klingon ship is decloaking and charging up their weapons. The ship takes heavy damage, and both Pierce and Koja are killed. The chief engineer reports over the comm that Klingon boarding parties have invaded engineering, and Taggart orders Commander McMary to assist down there. Lucas and Fuller move their comrades' bodies out of the way as Taggart determines their course of action.
McMary and her team meet Jhael and the other engineering staff outside engineering. They fight their way past several Klingons and eventually manage to retake engineering. Unfortunately, a straggler remains and manages to stab McMary. After a brief struggle, his disruptor fires and it kills both of them. Jhael reports their success as well as McMary's death to the captain. The surviving security officers – Vance, Briggs, and another officer – head to other parts of the ship to drive away the remaining Klingons.
While Taggart, Fuller, Jason, and Lucas attempt to coordinate repairs, two Klingons emerge from the turbolift. Fuller is severely wounded by one of the Klingons, and Taggart is taken hostage aboard the Klingons' ship. Jason calls upon Dr. Travis Murray, but he finds out from the nurse, Julia Cromwell, that he is dead. Fuller, near death, informs Jason that he must complete the mission and promotes him to lieutenant. Jason then makes a ship-wide announcement that he is taking command.
Act III: Needs of the Many
Julia soon arrives on the bridge, accompanied by Ernie, Hannah, and Charlie Morgan. Ernie takes the conn station, Hannah takes communications, and Charlie the ops station. Fuller dies shortly after from a pierced lung and internal bleeding.
Jason then orders Hannah to send a distress call to the nearest Starfleet vessel, with a second encrypted signal piggybacking the first. The Klingons hail them and their captain, Kadek, informs them that he has relayed their distress signal to Starfleet using an "old Earth method." He then offers them a deal: if Jason will give him information regarding the Federation's fleet movements along the Klingon border, as well as the ships' design specifications, he will release Captain Taggart to them. He allows them to speak to Taggart for a moment, and Taggart convinces Jason not to mount a rescue. He tells Jason to get the Leviathan to safety and leave him behind. After exchanging farewells, Jason has Hannah terminate the channel between the ships.
He orders Charlie to fire upon the Klingons, but Charlie informs him that weapons are still offline. He then prepares to ram the Klingon ship with the Leviathan. Suddenly, the USS Renown warps into the system, and hails the Leviathan. Captain Vo'Lok informs Jason that they will handle the Klingons.
The IKS Chot and USS Renown exchange blows until the Renown finally lands a major hit to the Chot's engine. The Klingons retreat, and the Renown is unsuccessful in rescuing Taggart. Just then, the Renown receives another distress call, this one from the USS Khitomer. Vo'Lok contacts Jason and tells him of their failure to retrieve Taggart, to which Jason insists on tracking the Klingons. Vo'Lok also tells him of the distress call, and their duty to assist the Khitomer. Vo'Lok then sends several work crews over to the Leviathan to assist them in repairs. The two ships then embark for the location of the Khitomer.
- Leo Anderson • Dylyp Azeli • Kevin Briggs • Julia Cromwell • Crusoe • Ferra • Elisa Flores • Jason Fredricks • Hannah Freeman • Henry Fuller • Daniel Harvey • Ernie Hauser • Tala Jones • Kadek • Koja Nara • Vance L'eher • Mars Lionel • Mercedes McMary • Lenerea Mendel • Charlie Morgan • Norrg'k • Jhael Onika • Jeff Philips • Marvin Pierce • Serov • T'Vrell • Masc Taggart • Raltha Trebor • Vo'Lok • Lucas Wells • Sofia Wenner • Zarva
- Referenced only
- Winston Churchill • Maria Fredricks (not by name) • Thomas Fredricks • Travis Murray • Jean-Luc Picard (not by name) • Jorel Quinn • Jiro Sugihara
- IKS Chot • USS Leviathan • USS Renown • Zeus
- Referenced only
- SS Break Even • USS Khitomer • USS ShiKahr
- Earth Spacedock • San Francisco, Earth • Starfleet Academy
- Referenced only
- Imaga system • Utopia Planitia Fleet Yards
Governments and organizations
- 2408 • 2409 • bat'leth • Class of 2408 • commanding officer • communications officer • Federation-Klingon War • first officer • Galaxy-class • Irish • Miranda-class • number one • operations officer • Saurian brandy • science officer • stardate • tactical officer
Background and trivia
- This chapter is an adaptation of the Star Trek Online tutorial missions "Graduation Day", "Training Cruise", and "Field Promotions".
- It is an extensive rewrite of "Khitomer Crisis", Federation Legacy's original first chapter.
- It also uses the same title as the original second chapter of the story.
- It received a comprehensive revision in October 2015 which was accidentally published over by "Line in the Sand. It was again revised between June and July 2016; the end product was slightly different from the 2015 revision.
- Various characters that did not appear in "Khitomer Crisis" were added to this chapter.
- It received another significant revision in May 2020. Changes include:
- The bridge scene in Act II has been extended. Jason Fredricks and Lucas Wells stay on the bridge with Masc Taggart and Henry Fuller, while Mercedes McMary is sent to engineering in their stead.
- Marvolo Piers has been renamed to Marvin Pierce.
- McMary dies while retaking engineering from the Klingons.
- Kevin Briggs takes the place of a previously unnamed security officer in the engineering scene.
- Fuller now gives Jason a field promotion to lieutenant before his death.