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Conga

Posted on 30 Nov 2016 @ 8:49am by Ensign Kelly Khan

Mission: History
Location: Starfleet Academy
Timeline: 2387 Junior Year

Cadet Junior Class Kelly Marie Khan was surprised when she got a message from Cadet Senior Grade Lurqal to report to the Flight Hangar. The Senior Cadet was one of the best pilots on the campus and Kelly had been on his tail the entire time at Academy, but was never able to surpass the cadet in the area of flying. Still, she figured the half Klingon cadet wasn't all bad and had even given her a few tips and tricks in the past three years even if he did always boast about being the best.

She quickly put her uniform on and checked herself in the mirror; the Senior Grade Cadet was strict when it came to duty and protocol and Kelly wasn't about to arrive looking like a slob and out of uniform when she was being summoned. "One more year and I'll be a senior cadet," she told herself. "Then no one but the instructors and senior officers can order me around."

Satisfied with her appearance in general, she checked the three squeaks on her collar to make sure they were properly polished, then headed out to meet the cadet who had thus far evaded her every attempt at surpassing him in the flight classes. Kelly wanted to take her time going to the Flight Hangar, but at the same time she wanted to get there as quickly as possible; it was a fine line between impertinence and insubordination and while Cadet Lurqal wasn't an instructor, he had enough influence with other cadets to make her life miserable.

Still, she put some pep in her step and made it to the Flight Hangar in just a few minutes, but when she entered, there wasn’t anyone around. Granted, it was evening and the classes had been long out for the day, but she didn’t even see a maintenance person or officer checking any of the shuttles or runabouts. “Hello?” she called as she went in to look around.

As soon as she had entered the hanger, the bulkhead doors sealed themselves suddenly, and with a violent slam, just as every light in the area went out, leaving the hangar in darkness. The only lights were from wall consoles, or very small rays of light seeping through the top of the building. A gentle hum in the background could be heard, indicating that a forcefield had been set up at the entrance to the hanger, but nothing else could be heard in the immediate area.

“I don’t think I’m on Qo’nos any more,” Kelly quipped as the doors closed and she heard the forcefield. She turned to the panel and entered her code, then frowned when it informed her that her access wasn’t high enough. She turned and surveyed the area around her for any sign of an intruder as she crossed to a tool bench and picked up a hyperspanner. “Come out, come out, wherever you are,” she called.

In the darkness, tiny scratches could be heard, much like the scurrying of a small creature, as well as minute noises. Something was tapping on the wall, but in regular intervals. Another sound could be heard, this one louder, almost like footsteps. The sounds came from behind Kelly, but nothing could be seen. The sound of footsteps began moving away from her, just as a gentle growl could be heard from somewhere.

Kelly slipped her shoes off quietly and padded forward with the hyperspanner in hand and closed her eyes. With her Aikido and Jiu Jitsu training, anyone would be hard pressed to do more than get a first attack on her if that was their intent. “Cadet Lurqal, if this is your idea of a joke, I’m not laughing,” she said, knowing her voice would echo.

Another growl; more footsteps. This time from ahead of her. Then from behind her. They stopped, and began again. But something else could be heard now. The roar of a beast, but from which direction? It echoed around the hanger bay, just as a wall panel flashed on and off. It flashed on and off again, before shutting down. But in the darkness, with the minimal light, a shadow appeared ahead of her...filling what little light there was…

“So that’s how you want to play it, huh?” she asked as she sidestepped and brought the hyperspanner up before she spun in a three hundred and sixty degree turn with it held out in front of her, her arm still. “Come get some.”

A loud roar could be heard, and out of the darkness stepped a creature of some kind. Only the dark shape of the creature could be seen as it stepped towards Kelly. It took another step, towering over her, looking down with red eyes that were hungry...and it had her in it’s sight.

Whatever it was, Kelly knew it was just a bit too big to be taken down with basic Aikido or Jiu Jitsu, so she launched the hyperspanner directly for it’s red eyes. Not bothering to see if it hit or not, she darted to the side and then spun and headed for the nearest runabout. No matter what it was, she doubted that a terrestrial being could withstand an assault from a phaser.

The hydrospanner sailed for the eyes of the creature, but went through them as though it wasn’t there. It took a step forward...and began to fizzle out of existence. As it disappeared, the lights to the entire hanger came back on, and the hatch to the runabout that lay in the hangar opened. “I thought you said you had fixed it.” A clearly annoyed Lurqal growled at the human holding a PADD.

“I did. But I warned you it could be too much for the system.” Cadet Michael Anders said, holding up his hand in surrender. “I kept it going as long as I could.”

“A little longer would have been nice.” Lurqal retorted, looking at Kelly. “You appear to be in a rush, Cadet.” He said to her, a smirk on his face.

Kelly stopped and turned when the lights came on and she found herself facing Cadet Senior Grade Lurqal. She quickly composed herself and grinned, despite being barefoot at the moment. “Just thought I’d go for a run in the dark, Cadet Lurqal,” she said while vowing to find a way to wipe the smirk off of his face.

“Hah! I knew there was a reason I liked you.” He said, as he approached her, and took hold of her shoulders. “Even facing the unknown, you keep your wit. I believe I was right when I made my decision.” He said, letting her go and facing the others who had been in the runabout, Alyssa, Marius, T’Kar, Amanda and Henry, the members of his squad. “Do any of you question me?” He asked. No one spoke, of course. He looked at her. “Ah, but you don’t know what the question is, do you?” He asked Kelly.

“What decision would that be?” Kelly asked. She wanted to say a dozen other things while kneeing the Senior Cadet in the groin, but that would leave a mark on her otherwise spotless record at the Academy.

“Why, the decision to add the final member to Nova Squad, of course!” Lurqal said, his grin widening. “We need someone to fill our final position. But is it something you have the courage for? The skill, the dedication and the prowess for?” He asked, staring intently at her.

“Nova Squad?!” Kelly squealed and nearly jumped up and down before she composed herself, although she was vibrating with excitement. “Thank you, Cadet Lurqal!”

Lurqal buried a smile, having anticipated the response. Well, mostly. He hadn’t anticipated the part of her loud squeal. But it was to be expected, of course. Very few were chosen for Nova Squad, and since he had taken over the leadership role, he had been very selective about who would remain and who would join. But there was something about the cadet that gave her an edge. “You have one trial to survive first, before you are officially a member.” Lurqal said. He grinned, baring his teeth. “You must be able to match drinks with me.”

“bIr jaj ghorgh pagh qul naQmey je SoH moq,” Kelly replied, the universal translator interpreting her words to the others as ‘It will be a cold day when I can't match and beat you’. She bared her own teeth and stepped up until they were chest to chest, despite the difference in height and she met his eyes. “Shall we?”

Lurqal grinned. “maHvaD ghu’vam blr qab tay” He replied, the translator interpreting for the others ‘Let us face the cold together.’ He looked at the group. “The fun begins now!”

“Woohoo!” Kelly said and looked around. “Let’s get this party started! Where’s the music and goodies at?”

Lurqal smiled and looked at Michael. “Energise.” He ordered. Michael nodded, and a transporter beam activated, beaming in several crates, as well as a music and lights system that he had prepared. As the music began to play, Lurqal grabbed a bottle of bloodwine from the first crate. “Let the party begin.” He said, before pulling the cap off with his teeth, and spitting it to the floor. He then took a hearty swig of the bloodwine, and passed it to Kelly.

Kelly took it from him and took a healthy chug of it before she wiped her mouth on the back of her sleeve like any true Klingon would before she passed it to another. “A good vintage,” she said. “Twenty three oh nine?”

“Of course! As if I would allow any lesser vintage for a party such as this!” Lurqal replied. “There is no finer year for Bloodwine. But this is just the beginning.”

As the music and lights started, she smiled. “I can’t thank you enough, Lurqal,” she said. “I thought you had it in for me the past couple years.”

“You humans and your quaint little notions.” Lurqal said, his smirk now a smile. “I had to test you, to make sure you were good enough. You showed a skill many others did not. And a passion. But I did have some fun, I will admit.” He told her.

Kelly laughed. “You aren’t full Klingon, Lurqal, but you think like one. Where’s the rest of the booze at? One bottle of bloodwine surely isn’t enough for all of us.”

“I may have human blood, but I am all Klingon.” He said, baring his teeth again. “But as for the rest of the drinks? Anders, bring them in.” He said. The transporter beam engaged again, and this time a barrel appeared, as well as three crates of bottles. “I hope you can keep up. We have everything we could get. And we have the hanger all night.” He warned her.

“The night is young and is it not a Klingon proverb that a running warrior can cut a thousand throats in one night?” she asked him. She looked over at the other crates and went to open one and smiled. “Now this is what I’m talking about. This must have taken some planning.”

“For Nova Squad, this was nothing. We are the best for a reason.” Lurqal replied. “It also helps when my father is head of his house.” He admitted. “But this was worth it for at last, we have a complete squad that is worthy of the name NOVA SQUAD!” He called the last two words out loud, prompting a cheer from the squad.

“NOVA SQUAD!” Kelly joined in and she waited for him to give her the official pendant for the elite flight squad of Starfleet Academy.

“Today, my squad, is a day of great honor.” Lurqal said, and Anders shut off the music. “For years now, Nova Squad has been comprised of the greatest cadets there are. We show why we are exceptional. And I have never allowed that tradition to falter. Today, Cadet Khan shows that she is ready to join us.” He said, as he accepted a box from Alyssa. “Your piloting skills are greater than almost all cadets. You are an honorable woman and pilot, and from now on you will be representing us. You will uphold our traditions, or you will face my wrath. Now, Cadet Khan, accept your place among the elite.” He said, opening the box and holding it out to her.

Kelly accepted the box with reverence, awed by his speech and her acceptance into the elite group of flyers. She took a breath and looked inside to see what awaited her.

Inside the box were two items. One was a patch that held the Nova Squad insignia, to be placed on her uniform. The other; Lurqal removed it personally, and held it for her to see. It was a necklace that looked as though it were made of gold. It sparkled, and was made in the shape of the Nova Squad insignia, mounted onto a silver back. “Only we are permitted to wear this. I had this made for you personally. Be proud of this day, for you do your ancestors and your family proud. You’ve earned this moment.” He told her, placing it around her neck.

“Thank you, Sir,” Kelly said as she practically glowed when he placed it around her neck. She took it in her hands and looked at it, then back up at him. “I am proud to have been accepted into Nova Squad and I accept the duties and responsibilities that they stand for,” she said, her voice starting to get choked up before she steadied herself. She took the patch and attached it to her uniform sleeve with pride and looked back at him. “Shall we celebrate?”

“I hope so, for that is why we are here!” Lurqal exclaimed, before taking a swig of Bloodwine. “If any of you are sober in an hour, I will be very disappointed!”

Kelly opened another box and looked inside, her eyes going wide as she pulled out a bottle of Romula Ale. "Fancy looking bottle," she said as she opened it and poured a shot into a glass. "To Nova Squad!" she said as she raised it to the others as Brick House started to play.

“Oh, I’d be careful with that one.” Lurqal said, grinning as he took another sip of his drink.

“You never are.” Alyssa said, also grinning as she grabbed a bottle of bloodwine and took a sip. Even T’Kar, a Vulcan, seemed to be enjoying the party, joining in with the drinking. Of course, he hadn’t been raised fully Vulcan, and so enjoyed a good party; more so since he had been friends with Lurqal.

Soon the bloodwine and everything else was flowing and Kelly had knocked back more than one shot of the blue stuff, finding it to her liking. When Conga started to play, she began to dance to the music, her hips swaying and the ale made it hotter than it was in the hangar. She gave a shout of joy and started to remove her uniform, tossing pieces everywhere as she headed for the door. “Conga!” she shouted as she opened it and headed for the quad without a stitch of clothing on.

It was too much for Lurqal, who was laughing heavily at the sight, as T’Kar had to grab hold of her and guide her back to the hanger. “What song is this?” He demanded of Michael.

“You’ve not heard of the Conga?” Michael asked, looking at him. Lurqal grinned.

“We now have a callsign for our newest member.” He said, his grin widening. “Make sure there are pictures; I know this will be fun in the morning.” He added. He could see there were other cadets approaching the quad, so he made his way over to her. “The party is this way, Conga.” He said to her, smirking. “A cold day indeed.”

Kelly laughed. “Party? That way? Let’s go!” she declared and darted back towards the hangar with cheers and catcalls coming from the other cadets on the quad.

“Indeed.” T’Kar agreed. Lurqal looked at the cadets who were cheering, and let out a growl. Not that it dissuaded them, but it did keep them from coming closer. He led the others back to the hanger and sealed the door, to ensure that they weren’t disturbed for the rest of the evening.

***Special Guest Writer Casey playing the parts of Cadet Lurqal and Nova Squad Cadets***

 

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