Dwellers in the Crucible by Margaret Wander Bonanno

One of the secrets of the Federation's successful effort to establish peace between its disparate worlds is its system of Warrantors, hostages from each world who would be instantly killed if their native planet violated the peace. When the Romulans kidnap six Warrantors, bitter tensions afflict the Federation, and a shattering war threatens if Sulu, sent to infiltrate Romulan territory, can't find the hostage Warrantors and bring them out alive.

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