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Cassie Granger


Morrison -> You are giving me that look.

Granger -> For good reason, Hal.

Morrison -> It's dangerous as all getout.

Granger -> Putting it mildly. What's your plan? Or do you have one?

Morrison > Size up what I'm dealing with first. This was my father's mission. not mine.

Granger -> And your father was a trained operative on a mission you know nothing about. One thing I noticed is that you and he look a lot alike. It's very possible that whoever he had a problem with will recognize you.

Morrison > :: startled :: I did not think of that.. :: stirs his drink :::Puts up his hands :: Would not hurt to ask a few questions, dig discreetly ::

Granger -> I don't suppose there's anything I can say that will stop you from going, is there.

Morrison > No, I'll go there regardless.

-Challenger Chat Log





It wasn’t exactly a place you’d take the family for an outing. In fact, it wasn’t a place you’d wish on your worst enemy. Unless you wanted to kick ‘em out of the galaxy.


Cass’s last visit to Coridan had put her skills to the test. As a last minute replacement for a counterintelligence agent, she climbed a steep learning curve. Even several days’ travel to familiarize herself with the various factions and chief operators - which part of the planet belonged to whom, who could be trusted (most of the time), how to grease whose pockets to get things done, how to work the rumor mill, and all the other intricacies needed to survive in a cutthroat environment - didn’t prepare her for reality. Instability was the name of the game, and she had no idea….


And Morrison was going in blind.


Cass blew out a breath as she monitored the final adjustments to the new Counterintelligence Multiple Threat Alert Center (CMTAC) on Challenger. A large table-like structure, the hub of the Altair Generation 8000 Integrated System (Altair Gen8000 IS), dominated the center of the newly constructed secure area adjacent to her office. Measuring 2.5 by 1.5 meters, the rectangular manipulative screen enabled the analyst to gather information from a vast bank of wall monitors, each one feeding from a different agency, media source, military unit, informant, or friendly resistance - all with simple hand motions. Depending on relevance Cass could sort the information, pick out the probable, the possible, and the downright BS, then send it to the main Altair brain for final analysis. It was a totally integrated system, capable of detecting a threat even before the perpetrators had finalized their plans.


And Morrison was walking into a gauntlet called Coridan.


One of the biggest problems on Coridan was that the only thing obviously wrong was a chasm between the haves and the have-nots. Shantytowns filled with menial laborers dominated the countryside surrounding palatial cities that were overcrowded beyond belief, fueled by the boom and bust cycle of its rich dilithium mining operation. Strict laws made sure the poor didn't interfere with the lives of those who didn't care. Otherwise, to the untrained observer one might be on earth or any other civilized planet, giving the visitor or short-time resident a false sense of security. So it wasn't the obvious, it was the undercurrent that the agency watched, the dynamic among the players who controlled those cycles, who controlled the economy, and therefore controlled the government.


In the earlier days of the Federation Coridan won fame for its dilithium deposits, its shipyards and its production of high-warp vessels. Trade between Coridan and nearby Orion flourished for centuries and should have insured a rich, lucrative, stable civilization. Instead it opened the door to internal graft and external forces using any means possible to control the planet’s resources. Status and money-hungry chancellors pitted their Orion allies against their Vulcan neighbors - the Orions wanting to take over the government and the Vulcans wanting to stabilize it. By the time 2297 rolled around, they’d been through the Dominion War and had emerged… pretty much as they were before: a civilization in need of repair.


More recently, Coridan’s infighting had subsided - a sign that one faction had squelched all opposition and had taken complete control. At this point it didn't matter which had control; the area had stabilized for the moment.


So what had Morrison’s father been doing there? Or had he even been there at all?


“She’s ready, Captain. Get ‘er up and running?” Mark Garrison, Starbase 184’s imported Altair specialist rubbed his hands together. His eyes gleamed in anticipation.


Cass smiled. “Go.”


The screens engaged. Cass entered the security protocols and they were live.


“Got a target, Captain Granger?”



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