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The wounded Chilo reappeared in the T.I.C. main assembly hall. Where there were over fifty other Chilo. Each of the Chilo moved around a large conical pyramid device, which stood in the centre of the room. At the front of the hall was sat a very large Chilo inside a glass chamber. The wounded Chilo looked at the large Chilo.

From inside its special glass chamber the lead Chilo thought, “Jobs to do.”

“Jobs to do,” the wounded Chilo agreed telepathically.

Then the wounded Chilo joined the others working around the large conical pyramid device. The leader Chilo watched from inside his glass chamber. The master plan to destroy this particular universe had been his idea. So with this Chilo taskforce and great care to ensure that the Chilo ancient enemies hadn’t seen their infiltration into this universe, he set the bait for the humans’ Temporal Integrity Commission. They had taken it so easily and brought the master device into their own headquarters thus helping to hide the Chilo temporal signature beneath the T.I.C. own temporal signature. This clearly kept the Chilos’ ancient enemies fooled.

The only problem left now was that three of the vermin were lose and the lead one had already taken down several of his Chilo kin. He indicated to two of his other lieutenants to go out and hunt down those vermin. The lead Chilo didn’t understand how this particular vermin was a threat to his plans. After all it had no major legacy or temporal impact and yet somehow this was one was becoming a threat to his plan.

+++++

The trio of captains had accidentally chanced across the building environmental control room, to which Captain Lily Fitzroy was currently guarding the door with a phase pistol. While inside the Klingon captain Mortas and the Pre-Federation Starfleet captain Douglas Gorrim were trying desperately to hack into the computer mainframe, but they weren’t having all that much luck. They had run out of room 101 once they had realized the Chilo had gone most likely to bring back reinforcements.

“Useless system,” shouted Mortas.

“If it was useless, we would’ve hacked in already,” answered Douglas.

The Klingon and human captain kept on trying different tricks and ideas. Both of them were all too aware time was running out for them to stop the Chilo. Suddenly a screen change and a beep came from the computer console.

“Yes, I’ve managed to get the base map and life signs up,” said Douglas.

Mortas and Lily came over to look at the console’s display with Douglas.

“So those Ptack Chilo are all gathered in one room. It’s a perfect opportunity to strike,” said Mortas.

“Well it would be, if we could harm them fast enough,” said Lily.

Douglas spotted something new appear on the screen map.

“Now that is interesting,” said Douglas.

“What? Oh, you mean all those human life signs that are now appearing in the foyer?” asked Lily.

“Yes, clearly a local assault team has broken in and will now storm the building gloriously in the next fifteen minutes,” said Mortas with a smile.

“I wonder how they managed to beat the quarantine field. Guess that it’s not important but what is a real shame is that according to my scanner the raising power levels will hit projected maximum levels in five minutes,” said Douglas.

“Is there anything we can do to help delay the Chilo?” asked Lily.

“There must be. Yes we must strike at the Chilo now to delay them, perhaps a glorious last stand to distract them?” suggested Mortas.

Douglas shook his head and said: “Only real cold will slow down the Chilo…”

“We control the environmental station’s basic functions,” interrupted Lily.

“Indeed, the actual building temperature is a non-locked command path,” said Mortas.

The three captains looked at each other and all smiled in unison.

“Well D’oh! Douglas,” said Douglas to himself as he face palmed his own face.

“Let us freeze ourselves some bugs,” said Lily.

Mortas ran over to another console in the room and typed in commands to change the building default temperature down to sub-artic levels.

“They say revenge is best served cold. Well my revenge this day will indeed be served cold,” said Mortas.

“Let’s make sure the Chilo can’t change that,” said Lily.

Mortas stepped away from the console as Lily focused her pistol on the console and opened fire. After a moment of concentrated fire the console exploded in flames and all the other environmental stations went dark.

“Human smash!” said Lily.

Lily and Mortas laughed at the joke. Douglas just gave them both a funny look as he wondered if the Hulk comic was popular with Klingons in the future.

“Glad you’re both enjoying yourself but we’ve got two problems. A) As it about to become freezing, might I make a suggestion that we locate and raid the quartermaster’s office for arctic survival gear. B) The Chilo device still seems to be building up to activation…

A Chilo phasing into the room interrupted Douglas.

“And C) There is an active Chilo in the room,” said Douglas.

“Cold not stop us, you will die along with the Preservers,” though the Chilo.

“Then today is a good day to die,” said Mortas.

Mortas raised the Bat’leth. Lily opened fire with the phase pistol while Douglas fired the MACO rifle but the cold and low power levels meant the energy weapons just sparked one final time and failed to produce an energy beam.

“Talk of lousy timing,” said Douglas.

Lily threw the pistol at the Chilo; by sheer chance rather than careful aim, it hit the Chilo square in the eye.

The Chilo cried in pain and the momentary distraction was enough to allow Mortas to drive the edge of his acquired bat’leth in and crack open the Chilo exo-amour.

In real pain the Chilo knocked the Klingon and his bat’leth aside and they went crashing to the floor. As the Chilo now thrashed in pain as its inner rainbows seem to leak out. Lily saw her opportunity and running forwards, she ducked down, grabbed the Bat’leth from the floor and with surprising grace she dodged the thrashing Chilo’s attacks so she could drive home the Klingon weapon into the amour opening.

The blow was clearly fatal but as the Chilo died in its dying spasms, Lily was knocked flying through the air. Douglas could see the red blood coming from her but he suddenly realized he did know how to delay the rest of the Chilo but he also knew he could stop now to aid his fellow captain.

“Stay with Lily, Mortas. I’ve got a plan to stop them but…well…let’s just say it’s a good day to die,” said Douglas. Then he ran from the room.

“Indeed Captain, happy bug hunting. I’m looking after your woman warrior,” called Mortas.

Douglas headed for the other room he had seen on the map. Now Douglas ran for all he was worth towards that room. The temperature was now getting bitterly cold and it was starting to cut right through him. Each breath and every step required more strength than he knew he had ever had. He reached the room that had been called the temporal transporter on the map and Douglas raced into the room.

Douglas was thankful that the Chilo in their arrogance hadn’t thought to lock the transporter controls and he was also thankful for his time in Starfleet research and development division, since it meant Douglas was fairly familiar with transporter technology of his time and even if this one was a lot more advanced, it still had a similar fairly foolproof controls system.

Douglas then quickly found Lily’s life signs in the building and then the correct moment in time to beam her to.

=/=
2370

Mortas was surprised when a transport light engulfed him and Lily, just as more Chilo warriors phased into the environmental room.

Suddenly Mortas was once more on his command deck, again looking at the Chilo device.

“Alert Status One! Destroy that thing now for all Klingon honor!” said Mortas

=/=
2233

“Captain!” exclaimed Doctor De’Liara.

Captain Lily Fitzroy was laying injured on a bed in the USS Argonaut sickbay.

“Doc, tell Number One to AMP torpedo that alien device to pieces now. Innocent lives depend upon it,” said Lily weakly.

With a second bid, Doctor De’Liara ran over to the wall intercom and hit the bridge call button.

=/=
2158

The Kirov and Ariane were jointly offloading their anti-matter torpedoes into a Romulan bird of prey; the Earth-Romulan war tide had turned. Now while it was still a bloodbath, an Earth and Coalition victory actually seemed possible for Earth forces. The Kirov and Ariane had cornered the last Romulan ship in the Argelius sector in an asteroid field and were now systematically destroying it. Captain Douglas and Captain Tatyana were both keen to get the confirmation of a kill, since they had a friendly bet on for whose ship was going to secure the most enemy kills.

This kill looked like it was going to the Kirov, when suddenly the Romulan in a last act of revenge released one of their strange torpedoes straight at the Kirov, then suddenly the strange torpedo was gone in a flash of light. The Ariane swooped in and put a full wave of its anti-matter torpedoes into the Romulan vessel causing it to explode in a big ball of fire.

=/=
3310

The senior Chilo was struggling with the immense cold but his victory was still going to be assured. The other Chilo had been sent to intercept the assault force in the foyer and they were successfully delaying the newly arrived vermin from reaching their device. This universe would soon lose its ancient preservers race and with them so many of the later other major races, making destruction of this universe so much easier.

Suddenly a warning light began to flash on his console. The vermin ancestors had somehow destroyed two of the Chilo temporal targeting stations. Their attack would miss the target and fail now unless he did something quickly. Then there was a blaze of light and a missing Romulan singularity torpedo from the year 2158 materialized and hit him square in the face. The resulting explosion blew the Chilo, their device and indeed the whole building sky high.

The T.I.C. Wells-class time ship in orbit above only just managed in time to recover the assault team, the past captain, and throw up a remote containment field around the building between detecting the third temporal transport signature and the Romulan torpedo exploding thanks to their temporal controller mechanisms.

=/=
2160

Douglas had closed his eyes after beaming the singularity torpedo from 2158 into 3310 since he fully expected to die quickly, and so was somewhat surprised to be able to open his eyes a few seconds later and discover that he once again stood in the Ariane lift. Sadly at his feet lay his late senior science officer James Comsox’s broken body. Douglas hit the lift control for sickbay and the morgue, and as he bent down to pick up his dead officer, Douglas said to the corpse: “Humanity survives, this time, and that will be your legacy Mister Comsox. I can think of none better. I sadly know that will be only cold comfort to your wife and children, though unlike me you’re going to be spared the worst thing, which is I know that Mortas implied that the Klingon legends will say, one day in our future, that the Chilo will be back with yet another evil plan.”

Then Douglas wept.

=/=


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