The USS Merlin, NX-26513, is an Ambassador Class Diplomatic Courier working out of Starbase 20. Her primary mission is to serve as part of the Federation’s Diplomatic Corps and as such, she carries a crew vastly experienced in Federation law and customs.
The Ambassador Class starship was developed at the Utopia Planatia Fleet Yards but constructed at a number of shipyards. The Merlin heralded from the New Aberdeen Shipyards located at Aldebaran III (also known as Alpha Tauri) and launched on stardate 23785.28. Her first mission was to act as the flagship for Federation Ambassador T’Len of Vulcan on her mission to negotiate Federation membership with the Gebralli.
The mission unexpectedly gave the captain and crew of the USS Merlin a chance to prove their ability to act as a ship of the line when they were ambushed by Breen privateers en route to the Gebralli home world. It was the quick thinking of the XO, Commander Zig (a long time student of the tactics of Capt James T Kirk) who noticed that the enemy ship had a weakened deck plate near their sensor arrays. She ordered that a modified photon torpedo be fired, and this disabled both the sensor and weapons arrays. The Merlin, eager to add to the Federation’s knowledge of the legendary Breen, locked on their tractor beam and transported a security team onto the Breen ship. The Breen, however, had no intention of surrendering their vessel or revealing their physical form; the CO had initiated the auto-destruct sequence. With seconds to spare, the XO realised this and recalled the Away Team, but not before downloading some essential files from the Breen ship’s computers. The Merlin made a hasty retreat, ensuring the safety of the Merlin and the ambassador, but sadly, all hands were lost on the Breen vessel.
Upon their return to Sol, Ambassador T’Len (who was still delivered on time for her conference on Gebralli) commended the crew or working so efficiently during the incident. High praise indeed from a Vulcan Ambassador. The CO, Commodore Richard Sams, then successfully petitioned STARFLEET Command for an upgrade to the defensive capabilities of his ship, arguing that if they were to continue supporting high ranking federation officials, they must have the capability to defend themselves if necessary.
In recognition of her quick thinking, the XO, CDR Zig was awarded the Christopher Pike Medal of Valour at a specially convened session of the Federation Council. The medal was presented by Ambassador T’Len.