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A Olive Branch

Posted on Tue Jul 7, 2020 @ 2:50am by Commodore Michael Aravan & Master Chief Petty Officer Thomas Barnes

Mission: The Nanjing
Location: Ready Room
Timeline: REDACTED

First Minister Akorum Dant had never seen a more active period of time. Nor had he become so fond of an organic. name.

It had been two days since part of the Nanjing left the hive to encounter this species called the Borg. The decision to do so was quite divisive, especially since many Nanjing did not wish to interact much with humans. And, it was ironic that after those Nanjing left, those that remained decided to mimic humanoid form, reshaping their microscopic bodies into facsimiles of bone and flesh, learning to speak and act.

The strange behavior couldn't have been better timed. A Starfleet vessel called Triumphant attempted to contact the colony that the Nanjing had assumed control over. It had been left behind by the Bajorans who colonized it, hoping to flee the terrifying Borg lest they be forced to possess mechanical parts and mindlessly integrated into their Collective. Dant had quickly gotten Triumphant off the comms, but Triumphant's First Officer had struck a chord with the Nanjing.

Had their dissenters joined forces with the Borg? Had the Borg been assimilated by the Nanjing? What bad habits had the Borg imposed upon them? And how would those habits influence their further actions. The Nanjing wished to explore and enhance their knowledge, but they were to do so without interfering with organic forms.

The Bajorans had access to Starfleet records, allowing Dant to learn of Triumphant and her exploits. Triumphant was a ship of peace, a ship of exploration, much like the Nanjing. Had the sect that went off after the Borg subsequently boarded Triumphant, then the future of the Nanjing was at stake.

This was why Dant, at the urging of the Nanjing, had retreated to his office to contact the Triumphant.

Michael was at his desk going over reports when his commpanel lit up and he saw a Bajoran male in the holoimage before he activated anything. "Excuse me, but who are you and how did you get through to this comm?" he asked as he started to reach for the secure panel to dismiss it and alert Security.

"Commodore Aravan, please wait," said Dant, attempting to be diplomatic. These humanoid habits were confusing, much more nuanced than simple if/else logic. "It is necessary that we speak in private."

"Identify yourself, because I know you aren't First Minister Akorum," Micheal ordered.

Dant's head tilted slightly to the left, finding curiosity at the Commodore's statement. Either the colonists had arrived at a Starfleet location and reported in, or the Commodore knew something that Dant did not. "I represent the Nanjing, Commodore. When I spoke with Captain Weisz, she described an encounter with a Borg Cube that was unlike anything on record. Did you find it devoid of dolamite, deuterium, and tritanium?"

"It was until it blew up," Michael said, his caution urging him to give less information but whoever was posing as Akorum seemed to be genuine. "Where does your race come from and how should I address you?"

"We are Nanjing," Dant simply replied. "But the pronouns 'we' and 'I' do little to describe the form that is talking to you. For now, let us settle on Dant. As for more information, now is not the time. I fear your ship is in imminent danger."

"In what way, Dant?" he asked as he entered the name Nanjing into the database, where it wasn't found.

"You say the Borg Cube exploded," Dant observed. "From what we know of the Borg, their ships don't simply explode."

"Every drone on it except one was dead, and the last one died after giving us a type of flight recorder," Michael said. "That's being examined now."

"Did you take aboard anything besides the recorder?" Dant asked, his face displaying what he thought was a sign of displeasure.

"We collected several samples of the Cube." Now the Commodore was wondering who was questioning who and why. "What does that matter?"

Dant shook his head. "Commodore, your ship has already been compromised. A portion of Nanjing separated from the whole, and went to seek out the Borg. If they compromised the Cube, killed every drone, then they have already been corrupted."

"How can they be stopped?" Michael asked softly, knowing he was asking how to stop the beings race that spoke to him. "My Executive Officer, Chief of Security, Chief Engineer and other important personnel were on that Cube, Dant."

"We have only begun to explore your worlds," Dant replied. "We seek, we learn, we adapt and adjust. Your records state the Borg are relentless. If the Nanjing have learned this, then they may have learned how to merge flesh with machine. And they will not accept anything that is unlike them."

"Merge flesh and machine like the Borg? What exactly are your people, Dant?" The Commodore asked, resisting the urge to come to his feet to be more intimidating.

"There is no time to properly explain, Commodore," Dant chastised. "Those that left us would be what you would call children. Younger, less experienced, full of their own ideas. Without being able to communicate with them, there is no telling what you may be up against."

"I just need a base explanation, Dant," Michael nearly growled, his dark eyebrows furrowing and his green eyes hard and penetrating. "If I don't know how to stop them or what we're dealing with, I'll take every measure I can to protect my ship and crew." And if that includes a planetary bombardment of your people, I won't hesitate. he mentally added.

Dant sighed, finding himself losing what humanoids would call patience. "The Nanjng are similar to what you would call nanites. You eat fruits, vegetables, meat. We consume minerals and elements. We seek solitude and order. I fear our young may seek dominion. If so, then they are already consuming your starship."

"Nanites..." He remembered something from his Academy days in what was a boring Science lecture at the time as well as a weird First Contact. "Did your species originate on the USS Enterprise-D on stardate 43125.8?" He asked quietly.

"Nanjing measure time differently," Dant said. "However, the summation of our measurements seem to match yours."

The Commodore sighed and pinched the bridge of his nose. "You've come a long way, Dant," he said. "If things get worse, is there a way you can convince your people to come back to you freely..and if not, could you combat them if they've evolved with the Borg nanites?"

Dant simply replied, "The Nanjing are responsible for our own. If you bring them to us, we will aid you."

"Then get ready," Michael said. "If what you've said is true, then it may be already too late for the ship and crew. We'll evacuate the moment it's detected that my crew has been compromised."

Dant nodded. The screen cleared, leaving the Commodore alone.

The Starfleet officer sat at his desk and pulled up all the personnel that had gone on the away mission and set an alert by each one's name to monitor from Security. For now, he could only play it safe and when the time came, try to get them back to the planet and hope for the best. His ship and crew were under an attack that no one could see or fight, but fight it he would. They would.


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