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Cptn Corizon

A Tangled Web Weaved

Corizon entered the secure room to find a doctor attending to the freighter crewman. “Can you wake him Dr. Agura? I'd like to have a word with him. I promise I won't be long.”


Surprised to see the Captain and XO enter the room, “Yes, of course,” Agura said, and prepared a hypo and administered it to Mikey to counteract the sedative.


Wydown took a position near the door, but looked over the medical records displaying on the screen. “He's stable. The wound looks like an easy fix. It'll be a few days before he can put full weight on his leg though”


“Good, if it were something more serious it would be even more complicated. If you wouldn't mind, Doctor. The Commander and I would like to speak to him alone.”


Agura nodded, “Of course.”


“Wakey, wakey, eggs and bac-ey.” Rue whispered quietly.


The fuzzy feeling in Mickey’s head felt like he had been on a drinking bring on Risa for the last week as he started to open his eyes. If it hadn't been for the pain in his leg, he'd have chalked it up to a hang-over and went back to sleep. However, the light filtering through his eyelids told him he was not in his own bed. Squinting up, he saw the outlines of two others, and it began to register that these were not Burris White, Nathaniel or Lobo.


"Ughhh, who's there? What have you done?”


"Ah, good. You're awake," Corizon said in as pleasant a tone as he could muster. "I am Captain Ah-Windu Corizon, commanding officer of the USS Excalibur. I am sure you're wondering why you're here, yes?"


Still trying to wake up, "Coriz...oh crap," he tried to sit up and jolted the just barely healed leg. "Oh bloody hell that hurts!"


“Now just take it easy. You've got a nasty bump on the leg," he said. "You're in sickbay of the Excalibur; the docs say to take it easy."


"Wait! I remember now...what the frig? What was that thing? I thought it was a woman...but ..." Mikey frowned. "That freak shattered my leg. I gave the signal, aren't your people trained in Federation cover tactics? I assume you would be....since you are evidently here poking your noses around. Five years of setting this up to get the right evidence, and along you come......I hope you have good reason."


Corizon blinked a few times, his ears perking. "What do you mean, cover tactics?" *


"Nothing......," Mickey thought that evidently these were not the ones he was expecting to eventually show up.


Corizon glanced to Wydown for a moment before turning his attention back to Mikey, doing his best to stay calm "Five years? Working to gather evidence? What are you talking about?"


"Seriously, what was that thing? She ain't Starfleet! And since when do Starfleet officers attack on sight for a non-physical confrontation!? That freak could have killed me! I'm lucky I didn't bleed out the way she messed my leg up. Even with the bone knitter, this thing is going to take a while to heal, and it's going to friggin hurt!” He paused. "For that matter, why are you here?"


Corizon shook his head. "I do apologize for that, I have asked for a full report and I will deal with it, but that's not why I am here."


Mikey took a look at Wydown, then back to this Corizon. Well, at least one of them looked normal, ship full of freaks. It was bad enough having to work with the Romulans, and now he was on a ship full of ......he didn't know what they were.


Mikey looked at Corizon, "Why 'are' you here?"


Pausing for a moment, considering the possible things he could tell the freighter crewman, Corizon took a deep breath. "I am here to get some answers for what a Federation-flagged freighter was doing inside the Neutral Zone."


Not certain this 'man' for lack of a better thing to call it knows anything about Mikey’s mission, he gave a plain answer instead. "We had been doing some trading with an Iridian trader that does some trading in the Tarusus system, since we can't go in there ourselves." Mikey continued. “He likes to meet near that nebula, to keep the Romulans from finding him trading with one of their border enemies."


Corizon shook his head. "Why don't we just skip to the part where you tell me the truth, hmm?"


"You mean the truth, as in why a Federation Starship is also hiding in the neutral zone or attacking traders in neutral space?"


"I don't think you're in any position to be asking me questions, but suffice to say we would have detected this 'Iridian trader' and we didn't."


Having yet to see one of the approved coded hand signals from either of the two in the room, Mikey wasn’t cleared to give them the information that they are asking for. So he remained silent.


"Listen, I don't want to make this any more painful for you than it already has been. We have three cargo containers sitting in security right now. What's in them?"


"It's already been pretty painful. Are you threatening to make it more so?" He turned to look at Rue as well, who’s surprised expression was hard to miss.


Corizon rolled his eyes. "If you cooperate, I can have you released to quarters under house-arrest. If you don't, you all get to stay in the brig."


"And blow my cover? No, back to the brig it is then."


Corizon frowned. A ship full of covert agents. He sighed, considering for a moment, the hand gesture the freighter crewman had been giving. "Your cover. So you're a covert agent, working for someone within Starfleet, and you're on a freighter inside the Romulan Neutral Zone? Did I have that all right?"


Corizon glanced to Wydown for a moment, then back to the freighter crewman before making a sign with his hand that to anyone watching would have been completely benign.


"Ah, you so do know a few people I see. What about her?"


Rue watched the interplay between the two of them with the most benign expression she could come up with. She was actually rather amused by the battle of wills going on in front of her and wondered who’d come across as the victor. Boys would be boys, she thought silently.


"She's my XO, anything you can tell me, you can tell her. Who are you working with and what was your mission?”


"Deep cover intel," he looked warily at him. "But if you're with them, why did you attack us, instead of aid us? We were trying to get these weapons to the Gamma Quadrant as it was.”


Corizon considered for a long moment what exactly his next response was going to be. Which side was Mikey playing on? Was it possible that there was a covert operation to clean this out, or was it possible that there was a covert operation helping this along? There was only one way to find out. "We couldn't be sure who you were, I do apologize. Things have gotten tighter lately."


"So why did you attack our ship? And us!” Mikey pointed to his leg.


"We didn't attack your ship, unless you mean boarding it. That was the Romulans who blew your ship up. As for why Lt. Victria attacked you, I said I am looking into it."


"It's going to be hard enough to get that meathead Burris back in the good graces of …what? They blew up the ship? All I remember is her taking me out, then being beamed here and lying in your brig."


"Yes, a Romulan vessel attacked. We were able to escape and put some distance between them and us, but most of the cargo was lost."


"Probably cutting their losses once they saw you. They had split our cargo into 3 separate ships so as 'not to have all the eggs in one basket' so to speak.”


"The rest of the cargo?"


“Yeah, it was a big shipment, but after something happened about a week or two ago. She split up the cargo – and sent part of it off to some other project in Romulan space. We were to be first to move, as we could move freely in Federation space. Once it was delivered we were to come back, to pick up the remainder from the 3rd ship.”


Mickey continued. “Hell of a good plan though, with the Federation and Romulans not shooting at each other for the time being following the war, it's easy enough to get the items needed moved to the Gamma Quadrant, and since we’ve got enough people in place nothing gets checked at inspections.”


Corizon nodded.


Mikey ran a hand through his ragged hair and leaned back into the bio-bed “So what I don’t get is what you all were doing out here in the first place? No one’s said anything about a ship being involved.”


“That’s a long story,” Corizon said, mentally kicking himself as he realized his little ruse wouldn’t hold up much longer.


“And it’s pretty clear your crew ain’t Starfleet Intell…”


“They’re not,” Corizon said. “As I said it’s a long story. Listen, after you’ve recuperated a little more, I’ll fill you in, until then let’s not talk about it anymore.”


Frowning , Mikey considered the situation, still unsure if he trusted Corizon. “So you weren’t briefed on this op?”


“Not fully, like I said when you’re doing better I’ll brief you a little more on what we were doing out here.”


“I guess I don’t have much of a choice,” Mikey said, growing weary. “So what’s your next move?”


“We still have a mission to complete, but we’ll get you back for a debrief.”


“If she blew up the ship, she'll assume we're either dead or were captured by you,” Mikey said reflectively. “So I guess we can’t go back, can we.”


"On the other hand,” Corizon said. “We could go ahead and deliver the three crates to the GQ then. Where were you going to drop them off at? I mean, something is better than nothing, right?"


"Like I said, we were meeting an Iridian trader, not too far from here. Always plant a truth in lie, right?”


Corizon smiled, “Makes it easier to swallow.”


"That she-devil t'Rahks, she'll be having to preserve her own hide if the rumors are true. From what I understand, she's being blackmailed herself, and really don’t' care if she lives or dies half the time. That's why she's so dangerous. Thing is, if she's lost her shipment, someone's going to be really pissed with her. More so if she blew it up herself. She'll probably blame you for that.”


Corizon nodded, not entirely sure who he was talking about. "Well give the coordinates to Commander Wydown. We'll see about dropping what’s left off with the Iridian trader and get you all back home. Let the brain trust back home figure out what to do next."


“I could care less about that scum you have down in the brig, but I don't want to blow my cover, you'll have to put me back with them or else, tell them I died, or am too serious and need other treatment. They really are a pack of jackals and fools.”


"Well, I am sure the Doctor can be persuaded to keep you here."


Corizon looked to Rue. “Commander once you’ve got the coordinates, meet me outside. I want to have a word with Dr. Agura.”


Wydown nodded, curious to what game Corizon was playing.


Extending his hand, Corizon smiled to Mikey. “And, I just realized I didn’t get your name.”


Mikey extended his hand to shake Corizon’s. “Mikey, Mikey Janson.”


What a terrible cover name. “Alright Mikey, glad we got that all straightened out.”


Looking puzzled, Mikey glanced from Corizon to Wydown and was met with a casual shrug as Corizon headed out. A few minutes later, Wydown exited the secure room to find Corizon finishing his conversation with Agura.


“Walk with me Rue,” he said nodding to Agura and then heading for the door.


“Well that was interesting,” she finally said when they were in the relative privacy of the empty corridor.


“He’s Starfleet Intelligence alright.”


“And all that jiggery pokery?” She paused when Corizon looked a bit confused. “The hand signals? Is that what that’s all about?”


Corizon nodded slyly. “Yep. He must have been a deep cover agent planted into the freighter crew to protect the interests of Intel in all of this.”


“So Intelligence is involved?”


“I am sure of that now more than ever,” Corizon said with a frown. “But I don’t know how deep it goes, this is getting big – maybe too big for us.”


Finally. “Oh yah think?” Wydown said with a half-teasing poke. “So what do you want to do next?”


“Let’s meet up with the Iridian trader, maybe we can get some more information out of him. Find out who he’s shipping to in the Gamma Quadrant. With that we’ll have enough proof to go back to Command and force them to launch a full investigation.”


“And just how do propose to get that information out of him.”


Corizon smiled, fangily. “I haven’t figured that exactly out yet.”


“Why does that make me nervous?”


“I have no idea what you’re talking about.”


Wydown stopped and folded her arms. “Of course not,” she said frowning. Finally sighed. “Sod it. We’ve followed you this far without a real plan. What do you want me to do? Besides keeping the natives in check?”


Corizon continued to smirk. “Go ahead and head to the bridge. Check in with the Major and find out what they’ve learned about those crates, though I suspect they more than likely contain disruptors.”


“Aye,” she said. “So head towards the coordinates?”


“Yes,” he said.


“And you?”


“I am going to go have a word with our other deep cover agent.”


She frowned. “Just try to remember what we talked about earlier, eh? You go in there with all guns blazing, you’re not going to get anything out of him. This isn’t the time to bung a rock just to see the glass shatter.”


Corizon nodded. “I will, don’t worry. I think he might have just become more useful to me.”


As they parted ways, a strange thought hit Wydown and she begun to worry if that was the only thing that mattered to Corizon – how useful an individual was to his personal agenda.

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