Expansion Of The Empire

The development of primitive warp technology led to an explosive expansion of the Klingon Empire. They found many planets in the next few years, some with indigenous populations, some without, and conquered all of them in the name of the Klingon Empire. It was during this time that the concept of kuve and the fact of the Klingon race became incompatible. Other races were now considered kuve and Klingons were the rightful masters of all.

One of the most revered figures of this time is Kahless. Kahless was a captain of a Klingon expansion vessel and was a brilliant warrior and a student of Kang the Seer. Unlike many Klingons who only gave Kang lip service, Kahless was a true student, a fact reflected in his many conquests. In their journeying in the stars, Klingons found several races that had also developed star travel technology. In their conquest of these worlds, Klingons faced many battles among the stars. Kahless was recognized at his time and is still studied as one of the most brilliant strategists of his time. He never took an unfair advantage of an opponent, yet was undefeated until 2125. Kahless was also a philosopher of sorts, and his personal logs are studied today as a marvelous commentary on the thoughts of Kang the Seer. One of Kahless' most well-known sayings regards the lip-service so often given to Kang. He realized that many people still used treachery as a weapon and had no scruples about honor, as long as they won. Kahless warned himself in his log, "Watch your back. Friends may become enemies in less time than it takes to draw a dagger." Kahless should have paid more attention to his own advice.

In 2125, K'ashked, the Klingon Emperor, grew concerned at the popularity Kahless was achieving. He knew that Kahless was descended from the same Kamorh'dag stock that produced Kapek and Kang the Seer and thus, Kahless had a rather weak claim on the throne that could be raised through Jha Jook. He sought to rid himself of this threat and was able to recruit the services of several young Klingon captains who were currying Imperial favor. He sent three of these young captains to the edges of the Empire to murder Kahless. That far from the homeworld, he thought, no one would ever know what happened. If the three were lost, he could name them rebels and name Kahless a hero again and worry later about getting rid of him. However, if Kahless lost, which was likely given the power which he sent against the captain, he could claim that Kahless was the traitor and that he intended to wrest the throne from K'ashked and possibly foment a Civil War.

What the Emperor did not know was that Kahless regularly sent letters containing log entries he had made to his consort back on Klinzai. Kahless' last log entry was never received, but his first officer knew about the consort and sent her an account of Kahless' last battle. Kahless was always known as an honorable man, but his honor and bravery were accentuated by the way that he saved his crew during this final battle. None of them wanted to leave the ship, but they could not disobey a direct order from the captain. Kahless bound his arm to his command chair and ordered his first officer to conduct the crew to safety. Thus no one could say that he had left his command chair or that another had been in the chair at the ship's death. All of the crew escaped, and K'ashked committed another grievous error by not ordering the captains to kill them. The Emperor was concerned at the blood feuds that would develop had he had the entire crew killed. Since Kahless' parents had both died without any more offspring and since he did not discover the consort, he though himself safe from feuds from that direction. Although nothing was ever proven, K'ashked was removed as emperor, through the process of qIchQagh, a modified holdover from ancient times when emperors were killed and he died a resentful old man without power. The phrase KahlessDaj ghop, or Kahlesste kaase in the speech of the chDogan region that Kahless came from, is still used today to honor a Klingon who takes the destiny of himself and others in hand and manipulates it to his own uses in a memorable and honorable way.

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