They say Qim Jahl was mad. Deranged. A lunatic who brought shame to the Empire. But who is more to blame – the madman, or the fools who set him loose?
In truth, Qim Jahl, son of Domas, was one of our greatest researchers, personally commissioned by the High Council to develop the most potent weapons in the Empire. Brilliant, even by the standards of the Federation, but twisted. A warrior knows battle, but Qim Jahl had…an appreciation…for annihilation. It takes an unsettled mind such as his to truly understand devastation. In the Empire’s name, Qim Jahl built weapons that would set even the darkest pits of Gre’thor ablaze.
So it was with Qim Jahl’s final weapon.
The High Council… vain, short-sighted politicians! Struggling for resources, lagging behind their enemies, perhaps they feared the Empire would fade into insignificance. Or perhaps they shook at the ramifications of the Federation’s Genesis Device? Quibbling fools! Whatever their reasoning, it was they who sent Qim Jahl to the distant Nemesis Cluster, with orders to create for the Empire a superweapon to surpass all others. This, Qim Jahl did.
Superweapons. Bah! What honour is there in simply snuffing out the lives of your enemies from afar, laying waste to a world with the push of a button? Kahless did not teach us such things. Qim Jahl’s ‘genius’, however, was not concerned with honour – only in reducing his enemies to ash.
In the seclusion of the MokTo weapons research station on the edge of the Nemesis Cluster, Qim Jahl set about creating a weapon to crack worlds open and leave them cold and dead. In the end, however, Qim Jahl surpassed himself. In a moment of frenzied inspiration, ignoring the reservations of his staff, Qim Jahl did…something…to the weapon immediately before it could be tested. The records end there.
What happened next is largely unknown, except that merely hours later the entire Nemesis Cluster was devastated. An entire star system was obliterated, and the surrounding region rendered uninhabitable, lashed by energy storms that burned planets and tore ships apart. Seeing the scale of the destruction Qim Jahl had wrought, the High Council ordered the Nemesis Cluster sealed. The MokTo facility was shut down, Qim Jahl received a posthumous discommendation for his failure, and the incident was forgotten. For a century, the Nemesis Cluster has been taboo - a forbidden region of forgotten shame.
Now, the Empire bleeds. Our entire race grapples with the Dominion, a glorious struggle against a formidable enemy. Our allies, the Federation, have proven their worth time and again, even as they reel from the Dominion’s blows. Even the Romulans show signs of entering the fray. The greatest war of our time is upon us!
So why am I, General Kran, son of Noggra, sitting here, reading century-old reports and pondering the long forgotten failures of a dead madman?
The war has entered a dangerous phase. Dominion and joint Federation-Klingon fleets clash across the Quadrant. The major Federation world of Betazed has fallen. The Romulans seek vengeance against the Dominion for the murder of one of their leaders. Even our best strategists don’t know what will happen next.
And now, fighting has broken out dangerously close to the Nemesis Cluster. Our long range sensors show scouts from both sides investigating the area.
The MokTo facility may be a tomb, but it remains intact, even after all this time. If even a fraction of Qim Jahl’s research remains aboard…
For the sake of the Empire, I must set the glory of the current war aside and lead my forces to the Nemesis Cluster. The secrets forgotten there must not be allowed to fall into the hands of our enemies. Or even those of our friends. Qim Jahl’s weapon, if resurrected, could destroy the Empire. It could destroy everything.
This madness began with the Empire. The Empire should end it. A hard battle lies ahead.
May the heroes of Sto’vo’kor fight alongside us.