(written from a Production point of view)
|Writer(s):||Dan Abnett & Ian Edginton|
|Series:||Star Trek Unlimited #8|
Kang and Sulu battle to the death... on the Klingon Day of Honor!
Young Alexander Rozhenko deals with cohorts in a school setting, the Camus Educational Center on Earth. Alexander is being questioned by his school principal about less than stellar behavior in a class, taught by one Miss Fiorentino, consisting of furniture destroying temper tantrums. Alexander indicates that he is being goaded into such behavior by a student, Darryl Futterman. The principal suspects Alexander of resenting his academic prowess. The principal agrees to overlook the incident, and refrains from contacting Worf or Alexander's Grandparents, if he agrees to apologize to Futterman. Alexander first refuses, but relents and seeks out Futterman at the school's recess area.
Futterman, it turns out, was in the process of being bullied. Futterman is an overweight blonde student with glasses who appears to be a "nerd."
Alexander apologizes to Futterman, who is shocked at the gesture believing himself to be "concussed;" he then questions the youth as to why he takes such pleasure in making Alexander look "foolish." Alexander, who is physically more mature than his school mates due to his Klingon physiology, intimidates Futterman into saying he will never do it again. Alexander is frustrated claiming that that, in itself, was no answer.
The other students, watching from a distance, assume that Alexander is going to beat up Futterman, which they refer to as "Lardo." Futterman explains to Alexander that he knew that, after studying Klingon culture, Alexander would not retaliate because Futterman was not Alexander's physical equal. Taunting Alexander was one of the few ways he could appear to be tough and solicit the consideration of others (namely and end to his playground beatings) by standing up to the son of Worf.
Alexander does not understand why Futterman is taunted so, citing that he is intelligent and should thus be "respected." Futterman replied that due to his allergies to Retinax and other visual enhancing drugs and his genetically predisposed obesity, he is a prime target for bullies. Alexander then offers a proposition.
The teachers and staff notice marked improvements of both boys in the areas of Physical Education and scholarships for Futterman and Alexander, respectively.
One day, when Futterman was alone leaving the gym, he is tripped and bullied by the same group of boys that taunted him initially. They intend to rough him up, but Futterman replied with a powerful "war face" and exclaims... "Today would be a good day to die!"
Futterman and Alexander are then called before the principal. The two indicate that they have nothing to say. The outraged principal indicates that the other boys will be transferred to other schools once their "broken bones have mended." The boys simply "smirk" and, after being asked again to speak up to their actions they reply with a loud Klingon war cry.
Worf is on a moon with jungle-like environs near a crashed runabout holding a "bundle." He quotes Kahless the Unforgettable in his personal log stating that "There are time when duty must override all prior pledges of honor." Holding a phaser rifle he positions his stance as a number of Klingons beam in around him.
The leading Klingon, Keltak, praises Worf's skills for evading his Bird-of-Prey and safely (somewhat) landing the runabout on the planet. Worf then leaps to safety under a hail of Klingon disruptor fire while returning fire, hitting his mark with amazing accuracy. The other Klingons had been selective in their fire trying to avoid hitting the "package" in Worf's possession.
Worf suffers a mild wound while lamenting that Keltak, of the House of K'Gor, is a relentless hunter and he has no water, provisions nor method of communication. The bundle is revealed to be a small Klingon child.
There is little time as Keltak's crew beings scans of the vicinity. Worf is spotted, but using their voices as a direction finding method, he is able to hold them at bay log enough to switch to his bat'leth and set a booby trap (his weapon set to a forced chamber explosion).
The trap is successful, Worf is able to fall Keltak's and finish off the rest of the offending Klingon's with Keltak's weapon. Keltak is able to stab Work in the back with a d'k tahg.
Worf is able to draw a weapon on Keltak and one last of his agents ending the debacle in totality as three more Klingons beam down.
The more central, and aged, of the three identifies himself as Vikoth, of whom the late B'Etor of the House of Duras was mistress. Vikoth indicates that had Keltak captured the child, he would control the House of Duras with all its holdings. He is also amazed that Worf, son of Mogh, would fight for and defend the child of his enemy.
Worf states that he fights for the honor of the innocent. He had intercepted the distress call of the child's nursemaid, who was transferring the child to a safer location, as he was returning to Deep Space 9. Worf will not "make war" on defenseless children. Vikoth states that the child will not make war on him, to which Worf retorts that future events will demonstrate if the honor is satisfied based on the child's own decisions.
Kang, warrior of the Klingon Empire and recently promoted Colonial Governor, questions the honor in his recent posting as an "Administrator." He does accept the position, but has accumulated some leave and intends to have "one last hunt." The hunt is of unusual prey... there are rumors that James T. Kirk is still alive.
Kang questioned the events revolving Kirk's accidental death aboard the USS Enterprise-B, believing that such men as Kirk, forged of the same fires as himself, do not die in accidents. The rumor, and desire for one last clash, was too great to ignore.
Meanwhile, Captain Hikaru Sulu of the USS Excelsior materializes on the same planet intending to take a vacation of sorts. Sulu instructs Ganymede of said vessel, to recover him after three days as the Excelsior surveys a red giant star.
Sulu makes his way through the terrain and is stalked by Kang. The two tussle despite Kang's demands for Sulu to fight him with more vigor. Kang and Sulu fall off an escarpment only to land in the relatively soft lush foliage near an oasis. They ponder if they are too old for such antics as they recognize one another addressing themselves by their titles.
After some time and discussion, Kang informs Sulu that he feels he is treated differently by his age and sought to challenge the only man who had ever bested him, Kirk. Sulu puzzles why Kang would attack him... Kang replies that the sight of a Starfleet uniform filled him with the range of Kahless. Sulu scoffs at the idea as idiocy and Kang remarks that Humans "do not understand."
Sulu acquiesces and the two decide to combine efforts, Kang to find "an old rival" and Sulu to find "an old friend." They will decide, upon his discovery, "who will keep him."
After a considerable search, of mutual assistance which clearly taxes both of them to varying degrees, they are confronted and taken aback by none other than James T. Kirk. However, this is a much younger looking Kirk clad in the green captain's wrap-around tunic as he appeared during the original five year mission of the USS Enterprise.
Kang discovers it is a holographic illusion just as Sulu knocks him to the ground to dodge a bolt from an energy weapon. It seems the hologram was a booby trap.
Sulu takes some readings with a tricorder as the two take cover from intense, yet apparently automated fire. The duo is able to disable it with phaser and disruptor fire.
Once the barrage is ended, Sulu encounters four images of James T. Kirk; one dressed in the standard Starfleet command tunic of the 2260s, another dressed as Kirk appeared as a captain of the USS Enterprise-A wearing the red uniform of that area, yet another dressed as his position as Chief of Starfleet Operations during the early-2270s and the last dressed in the red braided uniform he wore as an admiral in the late-2270s and 2280s.
Shocked, Sulu is unprepared for a phaser blast and is hit in the arm dropping his phaser. Kang tries to provide cover fire and attend to Sulu, but is assaulted by a Gorn. The Gorn attacks Kang... but Kang is much swifter and is able to wrest his bat'leth from his equipment. Kang puts up a fight, but the Gorn is able to turn the tables... Sulu dispatches the Gorn with a phaser blast.
Sulu identifies the Gorn as S'alath, whom Kirk had fought years before on Cestus III during a test conducted by the Metrons. Sulu describes the incident to Kang, he had been the helmsman of the original USS Enterprise at the time. Kirk had spared the Gorn's life, which Kang remarked as a typical Human fallacy.
A message left on a "message node" indicates that S'alath has succumbed to a mental illness that resulted in madness and was given this as a traditional warrior's death, to be left along at a place of his choosing. His people programmed the illusions to satisfy his lust for battle with Kirk.
Kang discovers that the Gorn is dead from Sulu's stun blast – his advanced age and the shock of battle did him in. Sulu and Kang bury the Gorn. This leaves them pondering their age, in the end they agree that the better glories to be had are those yet to come. After some parting words, Kang returns to govern his colony and Sulu returns to the Excelsior.
- This issue contains three stories:
- The stories all take place on the Klingon Day of Honor.
- Kevin Tinsley (color art - all stories)
- Phil Felix (letter art - all stories)
- Steve Pugh (art - The Boy story)
- Ron Randall (pencil art - The Warrior story)
- Randy Elliot (inking - The Warrior story)
- Tom Morgan (pencil art - The Veteran story)
- Scott Hanna (inking - The Veteran story)
- Cover artists for this release have not yet been identified.
- Hikaru Sulu
- James T. Kirk
- Captain of the USS Enterprise
- Klingon warrior
- Klingon member of Starfleet
- Alexander Rozhenko
- Son of Worf.
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