Paul Gadzikowski


T*R*E*K: "I believe you have that quality."

The comm screen cleared, to show Potter, seated at this very desk.

"Gentlemen, Doctor. Since you are viewing this tape, we will assume that I am dead, the tactical situation is critical - and the bunch of you are at each others' throats.

"It also means, Tharlss, that you are in command - of a crew you have served with for mere days - and are making probably the most difficult decisions of your career.

"I know of Andorians that you are a warrior people, and that your family ties are your strongest loyalties. The Andorian word for 'commander' is 'father'. Well, as I am your father, I commend to you my family, now yours. Seek out their advice, and if you find it sound, use it.

"Hawkeye, B.J., Margaret - you heard what I said to Tharlss. Give him all the help you can, but remember, he is the captain. I wouldn't have brought him aboard if I didn't believe he was every bit as deserving of the loyalty you have all shown me, and each other."

The screen faded to black. No one said anything for a moment. Then Hawkeye stepped up to Tharlss, still facing the screen. "I'm sorry, Tharlss. It must hurt."

Tharlss did not turn. "I can handle it." He left the cabin.

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