Editor’s note –
By the current stardate of 239103.27, the Ferengi are a well-established and universally recognizable species with our galaxy. The Ferengi are valued members of modern society, with impacts on the economy and politics of the Federation. Some of their species even serve in Starfleet as officers. The majority of their interactions with Starfleet and other organizations/races are documented and recorded in the annuals of history.
The official first contact between The Federation and the Ferengi occurred nearly 30 years ago in 2364. The USS Enterprise-D and a Ferengi vessel were trapped in orbit together while investigating the Delphi Ardu System. However, prior to this first contact, multiple encounters – some hostile – between the Ferengi and the Federation took place. Unfortunately, documentation and evidence of the Ferengi as a warp-capable species was ignored and not categorized in Starfleet records.
One of those encounters occurred between the USS Galway, a Baton Rogue class s vessel and sister ship to the USS Glasgow. Built and commissioned in the mid 23rd century, the Galway was active from 2227-2239 and during its encounter with the Ferengi, captained by a Bolian female named Haln Atrol. The below except from Captain’s log comes just after their encounter with a Ferengi trading vessel.
CAPTAIN’S LOG, STARDATE 223410.18
“Truth be told, I am still trying to wrap my head around exactly what happened yesterday. Command had seen fit to assign the Galway on a routine mapping mission of the asteroid belt surrounding the planet Maxia Zeta III and Maxia Zeta IV. Our long range probes had detected high concentrations of valuable ores and metals in the asteroids. My science officer, Lieutenant Fulton, and I had been chomping at the bit to get a look at the asteroids from our previous pass through the system, so Command’s order was received with tangible joy.”
“Everything was running smoothly as we approached the system. Dropping out of warp, our scans immediately detected two unknown vessels already in the asteroid belt. Bringing the unknown craft up on the viewscreen, it was nothing that I nor anyone else on the bridge had ever seen before. The ships had a distinctive crescent shape and were rust-orange in color. When I attempted to hail the vessels, I received no reply, but the vessels began scanning us. Raising the Galway to yellow alert, I attempted to hail the vessels again.”
“My communications officer, Ensign D’Ovidio, reported that the alien vessel was blocking our hails. Tactical reported that the ships were mining the asteroids of their valuable minerals and had raised their shields and were charging weapons. Shocked at the aggressive stance taken against a Federation vessel, I moved us to defensive position and went to red alert. The monotone chiming of the ships alert system ringing in my ears, I took my seat at the command chair and prepared for whatever these unknown assailants had up their sleeves.”
“As our ship drew closer, the unexpected aliens began moving away from the asteroids belt. Whatever their intentions were, and despite having the numbers, they clearly were not prepared to give their lives for their cargo. I was hunched forward, hands pressed together before me, concentrating, when I was roused from my thoughts by Ensign D’Ovidio. The aliens were hailing us. Funny, I thought, that they had waited until they had filled their holds with minerals and ore before deciding to communicate. I nodded in acknowledgment, took a deep breath and opened a channel.”
“The alien before me was, for lack a better word, frightening in appearance. Large orbital lobes covered its bald, rusty brown colored heads. Jagged, pointy, crooked teeth filled their small mouths. Massive rounded ears jutted outwards from their stocky, round skulls. It had its hands raised, blue fingertips pressed together before its face, much I as I had only done only moments before. Frankly, it was terrifying.”
“I shot a steely glance at my Lieutenant Fulton. The human shrugged his shoulder, letting me know he had nothing on record for this species based off their appearance. There was a moment of silence as what I can only assume was the Captain of the other vessel and I locked eyes. Since they clearly had warp technology, I was not worried about violating the Prime Directive. Rather, I my heart rate jumped as I realized I may be making first contact with an unknown species. I have transcribed the conversation with the alien captain below.”
Atrol: “Greetings, I am Captain Haln Atrol of the Federation starship USS Galway. Greetings.”
Alien: I am captain of this ship. What business do you have hear? We have the exclusive mining rights to this system.
Atrol: We are assigned were to survey – “
The words hissed from his mouth as he struggled with our language. Nonetheless, his rudimentary grasping of it led to me believe this was not First Contact, but rather a case of avoided contact.
Alien: “I care little of your mission, Captain. We were here first. The minerals belong to us.”
Atrol: “And who exactly is us?”
Alien: “That is proprietary information, Captain. Besides, you are a…female…it is below me to speak to you on matters of business and commerce.”
At this point, I felt my neck flush with anger. I kept my composure, but clearly these aliens were misogynistic and greed oriented.
Atrol: Captain, you scanned our vessel and ignored our hails. One would assume those are the actions of someone trying to hide something.
Alien: Your accusations matter little, female.
At that point, the alien before me sneered and closed the channel. Before I had any time to react, he had wheeled his two ships around and began preparing for a jump to warp. Tactical, to their credit, attempted to track their coordinates, but they jumped faster than we could react.
Whose this aliens were remains a mystery. Nothing on them comes across in our searches of Starfleet’s records. What I am certain of is that even if the Galway doesn’t encounter them again, some other Federation ship will. And when they do, they had better be prepared. This species is cunning, cutthroat, and aggressive.
Captain Haln Atrol