Subject: FRONTIER: An end in sight

SD 80614

Angus watched the mirror intently while he drew the razor across
his chin, behind him Leana laughed briefly, "What`s so funny?"
he asked.

"It`s nothing," she said, "It`s just that I used to watch my
brother shave, he looked funny with his face covered in foam. 
You just reminded me of him."

Angus cleaned the razor in the sink and started on the other side
of his face, "You were close to your brother weren`t you?"

"Very, he always took care of me.  Every time I did something
wrong at home he`d take the blame for so that my dad would beat
him instead of me.  I told him I could take care of myself a
hundred times but he never listened, he kept telling me it was
a big brothers job to look out for his sister.  We ran away from
home when I was ten, we spent six years travelling around, he`d
get work from someone, or beg if he had to, and he made sure that
there was always food for me if not both of us."

"I don`t really know my brother, he`d already left home before
I was born.  I only saw him a few times a year at most.  Every
time we meet there`s always one of us in a rush."  he cleaned the
razor and wiped his face with a towel.  "I think that`s why I
still use these," he held up the razor to demonstrate, "He showed
me how to use them the first time I had to shave.  I`ve used them
ever since."

"I have to go back to my room," Leana said, "I`ve got a couple
of things still to pack.  I`ll see you later."

"Later." Angus answered.  Then she left turned and walked out of
the room.

Angus looked around at the room, he didn`t think he`d miss it. 
It was bare, and apart from the door there was no sense of
character about the place.  The few possessions he had taken with
him were all now stowed in his holdall.  He looked out the
window, for what it was worth, the view was completely obscured
by the huge black ship.

[Tweedle bleep]

"Come in."

The door sidled open and Luther walked in.  "Are you ready?"

Angus slung his bag over his shoulder, "As I`ll ever be."

"I`ve got a runabout ready for you.  Come with me."



Angus followed his brother to the shuttle bay of the Frontier,
one of the now familiar androids stood on either side of the
docking portal, their rifles held across their chests, their
faces blank, impartial.

They reached the portal and the Frontiers inner airlock door slid
open and they stepped inside, the lock cycled and the outer door
opened.  There was a short passageway which led to the airlock
of the other ship and then into the ship itself.

Luther turned to Angus, "Welcome aboard the Nostradamus." he
said.

"So all this time that you had me thinking you worked for a;
commercial trading company you`ve actually been galavanting all
over the quadrant as a mercenary?"

Luther rubbed his beard, "Not only that, I also do escort,
retrieval, assassinations, privateering and the occasional spot
of haulage or mining if I`m stuck for work."

They walked along the corridor and eventually the reached a door
marked `Hanger 1`the door slid open smoothly into a huge room,
which easily dwarfed the shuttle bay on the Frontier.  There were
at least a dozen small craft berthed in the bay and the large
access lifts and doors suggested that there may have been many
more.  Luther gestured to one of the larger craft, it looked like
a cross between a large Federation runabout and a military
dropship.

"That`s the ship I`m letting you borrow, along with your shuttles
that`ll give you enough space to get everyone back to Epsilon.
There`s a cargo bay inside that`s been partitioned into three
areas, each one has bunks for ten people.  It`s all open plan so
there`s absolutely no privacy and it`s not designed for comfort,
she`ll get you home though."

"What are you going to do about getting it back?" Angus asked.

"I`m sending a couple of my crew along with you, to look after
my interests, I`d rather not lose this ship if I can avoid it. 
She may not look like much yet but my First Mate`s already
drawing up the plans for her transformation.  I think that with
a warp core like the Frontiers she`s going to be able to outrun
just about anything."

A puzzled expression crossed Angus' face, "How do you mean?"

"Part of the price I wanted for this contract was access to the
blueprints of all the ships experimental systems, they were
stubborn at first but they had to give in eventually.  I was the
only free lance willing to accept the contract."

A door at the far end of the hanger opened and the doctor walked
toward the ship followed by one of the androids and another
human.  He stopped in front of Luther, "We`ll be ready to leave
in five minutes, we can start taking the Frontiers crew on board
now."

Luther nodded and the doctor entered the ship with the other two
close behind him.  Luther tapped a badge on his ship suit,
"Simpson, give me full security measures on deck twenty six and
start moving Lieutenant Ramsay`s crew into hanger one,  they
leave in five minutes."

"Yes sir." a female voice replied.

Angus was about to point out Luthers mistake, and then realised
that he was quite correct. He reached up to the square pips on
his shoulder, and thought that he was going to have to get used
to 'Ensign Murray' again.

Luther looked across at him and Angus got the impression that his
brother knew what he was thinking, "You don`t have to go back
with them you know," he said, "I could always use an officer like
you on the Nostradamus."

Angus took a deep breath, "That`s quite an offer." he hesitated,
"I don`t think I want to leave Starfleet, I have plans,
ambitions."

Luther shook his head, "You`ll get bored of Starfleet eventually,
Dad always regretted joining, but he didn`t do anything about it.

I managed to stomach their rules and regulations for six years,
and then I decided that I wanted out.  I was probably the most
highly decorated lieutenant they`ve had, and I had even more
reprimands than I had medals.  I never bothered about the rules,
I did things whatever way would get the best results, sometimes
they`d reward me and sometimes they`s threaten to discharge me
if I did it again.  I`ve got five Starfleet court martials under
my belt, after the last one I decided that I`d had enough.  One
day you`ll realise that you need more space to do things your own
way."

"I think I`d rather try first than make a decision I might
regret."

"It`s your choice, but if you change your mind just tell the
doctor, and he`ll bring you back."

Several armed guards ran into the hanger and took up various
vantage points on the gantries as the Frontiers crew were
sheparded into the waiting ship.  Angus put his hand on Luther`s
shoulder, "I wish I could stay to talk longer but... well I guess
this is it for another four years."

"Don`t worry Angus, I`ll see you again before that long." he
smiled, "I guarantee it."

"We`ll see." Angus replied, then he turned and walked into the
ship.


The hanger doors opened and Angus felt the gentle pull as the
ship accelerated out into space.  He felt a hand on his shoulder
and turned to face Leana.

"What did he say to you?" she asked.

"He`s just offered me a place on his ship."

"And you turned it down?"

"Sort of, I don`t think I`m ready to abandon my ambitions in
Starfleet just yet." he glanced out one of the portholes and saw
the three shuttles from the Frontier pull up alongside the
runabout.  The four ships leapt into warp and in a fraction of
a second both Nostradamus and Frontier were far behind.
"Besides," he added, "I don`t want to leave you."  he put his arm
around her.

"What happens if we can`t get an assignment on the same same
ship?" she asked, "We`ll probably never see each other again."

"Don`t worry, I`ll make sure that doesn`t happen.  Somehow."

There was silence for a few moments and then Leana asked, "So how
long will it take to get back to Epsilon in this?"

"Not very long, but they want the shuttles to be able to keep up
with us so it`ll probably take two days."

"Two days?" she said plaintively.
 
"Aye."  He yawned and suddenly realised how tired he was feeling,
"Wake me up when we get back."  and with that he quickly drifted
off.

     Respectfully submitted

        ********************
        * Allan MacLennan  *
        * Lt. Angus Murray *
        ********************

"Put your faith in God and keep your powder dry."
          Oliver Cromwell.


Frontier Logs