episode four

Siblings day part 7

Inside sheliek space, the gatherers began there plot. It took mouths of traversing many hostile space. They had to be careful. 
They did not did not go the direct route. They had to take back alleys. It had finally paid off.
After pain steakng work the gatherers had located one of the ancient ships. The ship was stil in good working condition. They had to figure out how to use it they stil had to work on not being caught by the sheliek or  anyone else. That was a chore in a half.
  They did not know all it did. It was still a mystery. That mystery was holding them back. It gave others time to respond.
The shartle neared sheliek space . “We are really going in?”she asked. “Yes we are!” He answered. “Are you crazy. The sheliek do not like any kind of intrusion into there space. If they see us they won’t hesitate to open fire. This is beyond a bad idea. “She proclaimed.
“Trust me i know what i am doing!” She said. “Oh ok. “She said. The shartle kept going.
“Whats is all this?” She asked. “What do you meen?” He asked. “Ever sense the mission inside the jerendra realm,you have been different and its not just your abilities! Your doing things you would never do! “She said.
“I don’t understand all this myself yet. It is stil me. I am not just trying to figure everything out. “Wesley said. 
“Eventually mom and dad will figure all of this out. Well mayby not the extraordinary abilities part. They are going to find this out. They are going to know something is up!” She said.
“I know. One step at a time ok? ” He said. “Alright ! “She said. The shartle kept going.
The shartle had to be careful. They had to avoid the sheliek and the gatherers themselves.
The gatherers were abored the ancient ship. They had learned a lot about this ship. They stil had a lot to learn. 
  “Someone seams to be following us! ” a technician said. The man n charge looked at the screen. “Well well well! Plot intercept !”the commander said.
“It is a shartle! It is no threat to us!” One of the underlings said.
“You do not understand !” The commander said. The commander was unphased. He knew what he had to do.
The commander ordered the vessel to alter course. The ship headed for the shartle.
“They are heading straight for us!”Lesley said. “Your not seriously  considering  taken on  the gathers yourself ?” Lesley asked. “I have a plan !” He said. She hoped for all there sakes that they did.
The ship neared the shartle. “We are being hailed!” Lesley anounced. “On screen !” Wes said in response. On the view screen was the bridge of the ship.
“I am Wesley crusher of the united federation of planets. I know your plans to steal this ship and use it to invade acamar! I cannot alow it. “Wesley said.
“Accamar is my destiny mr. Crusher ! It is a smal planet in a remote reigion! Why not let me invade it. I can be an aly of the federation. “The commander said.
“Yes,that sounds like a great idea!”Wesley said. “We are not interested in conquest outside of the accamar system. We want our ansestral lands. That is all'”the commander said.
“I have heard that refrain before ! ” Wesley said. “There is no reason to distrust us. We have no qaurel with the federation. “He said.
“You have raided our bases!”Lesley said. ” It was out of necessity!” The commander said.
“Won’t that be your argument when your in power ! I doubt you will stop!” Lesley said.  “this conservation is mute! I have the ship and you are in a shartle. “Druim said.
“The vessel is going to warp. ” Lesley said. “No!” Wesley said. Time stoped.
“What’s going on?” Lesley asked.”i think i stoped time!” He said. “How?” She asked. “I don’t know! I have never done this before. ” He said.
” This ship cannot be revealed. It is too risky. It will threten everything. The government of soveregn murok must not fail! “Wesley said.
“Ok good call on stoping time but what now?”she asked. “I don’t know yet!”he said. “Not what i wanted to hear!”she said.
“Can we bored the ship?” She asked.”i have no idea . I have never stoped time before !  “Wesley said.
Wesley decided to try something. He went to the emergentcy hatch. He opened the hatch. Lesley had no idea what he was planing.
He jumped into space. “Wes what are you doing ?” She asked. “The laws that govern the universe don’t aply. “Wes said. He venrured outside the ship. He went to the orther ship. Lesley folwed her brother into the orther craft.
They opened the hatch. The two entered. They saw the crew frozen in time.
The ship was masive. The two walked around the craft. They looked for anything that could be useful.
“Where do you think this ship came from?” She asked. “I am not sure. It is quite a mystery.one that does not seam easily solved. “Wesley said.
“Remember when we were just normal teenagers ? “Lesley said. “Were we ever les? Really. Children of a celebrated starship captain,morther a medical officer with a notible carer of her own. “Wesley said.
“So mayby being a titen of some kind is not so weird. “She said. “I have no idea what is going on. It might not be me. I may not be some kind of super hero. I have no idea! I know we have to stop this ship some how! The gatherers cannot gain control of it. ”
The two go into a cralway. The area was very erie. The whole ship was. The two entered neared the engines. “Wes the engines are humming. That is not possible! “She said.
“This ship is multidimensional. “He said. “How is that possible ? How do you create a multidimensional ship?”she said. “I don’t know. I am not thinking that it was the travaler. “He said.
“You idolize him. You barely know him. You can’t totally know his intentions!”she said.
“I know that! It is just a feeling. “Wesley said. They stoped.
They neared where the engines was. Wesley opened it. “Please tell me your not going inside ?”she asked. He went inside.
“What is this?”Wesley said. “We are from far away. We are from another dimension. We alied with a humanoid race to build these ships. These ships are not for this time. They must be kept secret. “A vioce said.
“How can that be done? ” Wesley asked. the vioces started to tell him. He was ready to procede.
   Derim woke up. He and his crew woke up in an alien environment. They were serounded by members of the acimerian security. How they got hear is not known.
Wesley and Lesley emurged in the shartle. Time restrated. “Now we go to the star base?” She asked. He laughed. “Yes!” He said.
The end

Standard
episode four

Siblings day part six

” personal log using unconventional means, i have learned that of a complex plot by the gatherers. I am on route in an atempt to thawt there plans. I fear it may be too late!”
“We are on course!”he said. “Will you explain what is going on now?” She asked.
“This attack was a diverson as i suspected. The plot is a lot more interesting then i first suspected !”Wesley said. “Ok I’m listening!”Lesley said.
“There are rurmors that in the past aliens fought amongst themselves for domination. Masive wars involving masive weapons. Over the years arkeologest have uncovered powerful weapons. There are stories of supper starships that remain. These ships cannot be destroyed at least not easily so they are hidden. There are ancient treaties witch bar there use. Worlds that agree on nothing agree on this! “Wesley said.
“There is an area called the orange zone. It is heavily patroled. Any ship atempting to go in is schot down.no questiones asked. Thr gatherer raids are a diverson. Botril and his faction of the gatherers want those ships. These raids are to hide there true intentions!”Wesley said.
“So why hide these weapons? “She asked. “They are too dangerous. Too powerful ! These ships need to be hiden. Even one ship is deadly. It is a threat to every thing. “Wesley said.
“Ok ! If the area is hevily gaudred,they will be caught right?” She asked. “There is one area that is not patroled. The area is called the enigma. They may try to enter there. The area is under the control of the sheliek. “Wesley said.
“So normal people that are not Wesley Eugene crusher would assume that the sheliek can handle it and go on with life!”Lesley said.
“That would be corect!” He said.”why did i come with you again ?” Lesley asked. “This is going to be fun!”he said. “I short of believe you!”She said.
“It will be!”he said. “Are we really heading for the enigma ? If i remember right sheliek schot first and never get around to asking questiones. ” She said.
“Unfortunately that is true!”he told her. “So why are we not going to star fleet with this?” She asked. “I doubt they would believe me. It seams fanciful. Time is of the esence! “He said.
“Ok wess you do realize that you are 15 years old and that you are currently abored a scout ship,a shartle. “She said. “I know that!” He said.
“You know your not super human. At least i don’t think you are. “She said.
” I know that. I don’t want to sit on the sidelines on this one less! I have to do this!” He told her.
“I knew you were going to say that! Alright !” Leslie said.
The shartle headed to the area.the shartle neared the area. “Wesley what are you doing ?” She asked. “The treaty of armeans alows consultation in cases of bi lateral security,i looked it up! ” Wesley said. “I am sure you did!” Leslie said.
“Your not an ambesador or a federation oficial or a star fleet officer!”Leslie comented. “As a federation citizen,i am technicaly a federation representive!” He said. “I get really nervous when you parse words! “She reported.
“Send a hail with the paragrath that alows me to contact them!” He instructed. She sent the request.  They waited.
  After a while there was a response. The view screen was activated. On the view screen was displayed the image of a shieliek commander.
“Why are you contacting us?” The commander asked. “There is a threat in your teritory. I believe that non aligned raders are planing to go into your space.” Wesley said. “For what perpose!” The alien commander asked.
“They seak to locate a mytholocal ship or ships near your space !” Wesley said. “The myiths are untrue. They are fanciful stories with no bases of reality!” The sheliek said.
“I cannot speak to that commander but i can say that they believe it. I believe they are on there way or they may be hear!” Wesley said.
“we have no evidence of that! ” the sheliek said. “I would be on gaurd !” Wesley said. ” We always are!” The commander said.
The screen faided. “That was quick! They don’t seam in the mood to talk !”Leslie said. ” from what i have heard they rarely are!” Wesley said.
“I asume we are turning back. Are we heading to the star base?” She asked. “No. We are heading in!” Wesley said. “Are you serious ? “Leslie said. “We have to go in! I want to see this though. “He said.
The shartle headed in. Leslie was concerned about all this. Leslie decided to go along with all of this. She was not sure why but she was.
End of part six

Standard
episode four

Siblings day part five

“Personal log,Wesley crusher reporting. While heading to a star base for testing to aply to the star fleet academy ,we have uncovered a plot by a normadic group of scavaingers and pirates called the gathers to attack the federation. ”
“While it apears that the plot has been thawted,i am not sure that is true. I have my doubts. I am beginning to suspect that this may be diverson. If so what is the intended target?”
Mining colony
Obital base
“Come on wess its over! We stoped the attack . We captured the attackers! “Leslie said. “It does not make sense ! One ship. “He said.
“He is a senior commander in the gathers. He is known for doing bold operations ! This is not atypical for this man!” She said.
“He already pulled this trick once. Why would we not asume that he would keep doing it?” He asked.
“If your right,lets asume for the shake of argurement that you are, what can we do about it? The trail has gone cold! “Leslie said.
“I know that!  Both mom and dad have always said that don’t ignore your fears go with them. I can’t ignore this! “Wesley said.
“I see what your saying wes but i am not sure what we can do. We have nothing to go on right now!” She said.
“I have an idea!”he said. “Ok whenever you say that,i get really woried!” She said. “Ever been on a gather ship?” He asked.”ok now i am really woried!” She said. “It will be fine!” He said. “Oh gosh! We are going to end thousands of light years from home arnt we?”she asked.
The gatherer vessel was impounded at the mining station.the vessel was hevily gaurded. Right now it was considered a crime scene.
Every entrence was gaurded. Wesley and his sister had been careful not to be seen. To the staf of the mining station,they were civialians. They had no jurisdiction. That was true. Wesley felt he had to do this.
For whatever reason ,Leslie decided to go along with it. They needed to get inside. They had activated a transport inhibitor . To beam in they needed the code.even if they could get the code, the beam in would be loged in. They would be caught.
“So how do we get in?” She asked. “I’m thinking ..”he said. “Stop if it hurts!”she said.”man i should have brought gracie! She does not give snarky responses all the time! “He said.
” funy wess!”she said. He stoped to consider his options. “Ok i have an idea how to get abored?” He asked . “Please tell me we are not going into the reclamation system ?”she asked.
If course that was his plan. They were able to get inside and after a while inside made it on to the craft. They found a computer terminal.
“I can’t believe you just did that! I can’t believe i went along with it!” She said. “You have to admit this is prety exciting !” He said. “No i don’t think i do!” She said.
He tried to acess the data. “You really think you can gain acess to the computer ?”she asked.
“If commander data was hear i would have him do it. I am sure it would be no problem for lt. Yar,lt laforge or lt. Worf. Sense they are not hear. I will give it a try!” He said.
Wesley tried to gain acess to the computer. He was unable to so do.
“This is not the way!” A vioce only he could hear said. “What is the way?”Wesley asked. “You know the answer !” The vioce said. “That is not possible !” Wesley said.
“Wesley you know it is. You know you must!” The vioce said. He got up. “Wesley what are you doing?” Leslie asked.
He atempted to go inside the computer pannel. He hand seamed to phase in and out of the space time continum. “Wesley stop? Whats going on?”she asked .
“Its ok les. I know what i am doing . I will be ok!”he told her.she was not so convinced. She figured she could not convince him to abandon this idea.
Wesley started to go in and out of reality. He looked transparent.he went inside the computer core. He was gone.
Leslie was woried. She trusted that he was ok. She hoped that he knew what he was doing.
He was able to see images. He was inside a universe of ones and zeros. He had no idea if this was real or just what he perceved it to look like.
He called up the data. He was able to call up the archives. He saw the senior officers of the ship. They were talking,planing,plotting.
It all became clear. It started to make sense. He left the core. He was reconstitued into human form. “I don’t even want to know what just happened. Did you get the information ?” She asked . “I did. “He said .
“How bad is it?” She asked. “Bad! We got to get out of hear. We gota move now!” He said. “Where are we going ?”she asked. “No time ! i will explain on the way!” He told her.
This did not impress her but she went with it. The two went back to the reclamation system . She hoped that he would use his new abilities but he did not. She was not sure why. She did not know how it worked . She was not sure if he knew.
They got back to the station.they went to there shartle. The shartle left the station. The craft was off. Off to an unknown sector.
End of part five.

Standard
episode four

Siblings day part four

The gatherer ship was heading for the mining colony. The attack on the base was a good start. It was going acording to plan.
“On course!” The helm said. ” it is beginning ! “Bratril the leader of the gathers said.
Shartle
“I got um wess! Seting course now! ” Leslie said.” “Hear we go!”Wesley said. The shartle headed for the vessel.
Gathers ship
Bridge
“Batril we have incoming. It is a shartle craft. Star fleet. It is on a direct intercept course for us!” Dragelle said. “Really ! A shartle is coming after us!”proden said. “The federations must be facing hard economic times!” Herelle said. They all laughed.
“This should be interesting ! Increase spead. They want a meeting lets give them one!” Bratril said. The helm did as ordered.
“They have ploted an intercept of there own wess! I think we got there attention !” Leslie said. “I am sure we did. Now for the next surprise! “Wesley said. Leslie laughed.
The shartle neared the ship. “Time to test the new weapons ! Target the vessel less!” Wesley ordered. “Target aquired! Fireing now!” She said. The shartle fired a full voley of plasma based weapons.
“I thought star fleet shartles were not armed?” Dragele commented. “This shartle is equped with non star fleet weapons . They must have used suplies from the comercial base. They are inventive!” Bratril said.
The gatherer ship fired on the shartle. The shartle began evasive action trying to elude the gatherer ship.
The gatherer vesel continued to fire on the scout craft. The shartle continued to try to evade the ship. The shartle fired back on the ship. The shartle fired multiple voleys on multiple parts of the ship.
The gatherer ship was anoyed by this. They did not consider the shartle a real threat but it was an unwanted distraction. They wanted to get to the mining colony.
The shartle was delaying all that. It was delaying the inevitable but it was a delay.  Batril did not want a delay. He was so far being disipointed.
The gatherers fired on the shartle. Wesley was able to dodge this one. Wesley was on top of his game.
The shartle hit the vessel. Butril was very angrivated. He wanted this shartle to just go away. That was not happening. Not at all.
The shartle fired and fired.
The warship left the area. The shartle atempted to intercept. The shartle was hit. The nichelle was struck.
The ships near the mining colony lunched. They serounded the ship.
“We did it!”Leslie said. “I am not sure we did less. This was too easy! One ship. Something is off. This was a diversion. What is the real plot?”Wesley asked.
End of part four

Standard
episode four

Siblings day part three

“Personal log while my sister and i were heading to starbase 224 when i detected a ship trying to evade detection. Although i should have informed star fleet command and continue on my way to the star base. I have decided to persue the ship in order to uncover there plans. ”
“I have come to suspect that this ship may be ploting to attack a base or ship or some orther federation asets in our space.”
“If i was a terorist planing to strike a target in the federation? Where would i strike?”Wesley asked.
“Are we sure we are deeling with terorist? “Leslie asked. “Not tottaly. Romulons have a cloaking device so i think we can rule them out. It could be a sate i sapose. “Wesley said
“Lets stay with with terrorist for a minute. Terrorist engage in a kind of gurila warfare. They pick targets based on opotunity! They want victory! They want something impactfull. Something that has to be noticed. “Leslie said.
He called up the record of the area. “Ok we have an andorian colony,a minning colony, A setilite and a private base. “Leslie comented.
“The setilite would be the easiest target. It might not instil fear in those the mining station might be a tempting target. I’m thinking the comercial base!” Wesley said.
“They do not need to destroy the base only to do damage!”Leslie said. ” get me the base! I hope we still have time!”wes said.
“I am detecting a dampening field ! “Less said. “Crap! I am taking us to full impulse! Man i wish shartles were equped with warp drive!” Wesley said.
The shartle went as fast as it could. The shartle hoped to be able to warn the base.
Comercial base
The base arived and saw the base. The base had been hit. “We are too late!”Leslie said.”please tell me they are survivors ‘”Wesley commented. ” Yes there is!” Leslie said.
Base
The team emurged on the base. They began to treat the patcients. They were both glad that there mom was a doctor. They knew about triarge.
“Who attacked you?” Wesley asked. ” Gathers!” The man said. The damage was fairly negligible . There was damage and some injuries. Two were killed.
Shartle
“Wes what are you doing ?”Leslie asked. “I procured some weapons. They are civilian  but they will do the trick!” Wes said. “Wesly john cruser what you thinking? “Leslie said.
“The attacker won’t stop! You said this was gerila warfare. They will strike again ! “Wes said.”yes i know that. Lets let star fleet deal with us!” She said.”i am going to let them deal with it . I am going to help. I am right hear. I can help!”he said.
“You do know your 16. Your not yet a star fleet officer!” She asked. “I am aware of that Leslie. I may be 16 but there is little i dont understand . I know helm control as good as lt. Laforge or chief obrian,i know engines as well as chief argyile. I can man a aft station ad good as mr worf mayby even rival lt yar at tactical . I have trained all my life for this! “Wesley said.
“You’re not superhuman Wesley ! “She said. “Look i need to be on the front lines. We are closer to them then anyone else. “He said. “I’m going with you! “She said. “Fine!”he said.
The shartle left the comercial base. The craft headed to locate the vessel.
“Who are the gathers!” She asked. “They were originaly from accamar three.  They were misfits who left the planet or were exiled. They prey on ships for suplies. “He said.
“This seam to go beyond piracy. Do they usually engage in terorist attacks?”she asked. “Not that i know off. Dad delt with gatherer raids while in command of the stargazer. They are usually pirate raids. Your right this is a style of warfare. “Wesley said.
“Where did you think they will attack next?” She asked. ” The mining colony. This will keep escilating. I wish i know what there end goal was!”Wesley commented.
The craft headed for the mining colony. The craft hoped to get there before the gathers did. It would be a tall order. Wesley did not know what else to do. Off they went.
End of part three

Standard
episode four

Siblings day part two

“Personal log,Wesley crusher reporting. While on my way to a pre academy evaluation before i aply to the star fleet academy we have come across a poor man’s cloak. We suspect that it may be a smugling operation. While we should probably contact star fleet and let them deal with it. If we wait we could lose them”
  “Stay on um less!” Wesley said.”i know wes! ” she said. The shartle kept going. The shartle folowed the bread crumbs. Thr signal went in and out. Lesley was able to predict where they were going and where they would end up.
The shartle kept following the bread crumbs.  “They are trying to hide themselves but they are having trouble doing it!” She said.”i am so sad for them!” He said.
On the vessel they knew that they were being folowed. They did all they could to cause the shartle to lose them.
“I can’t believe we are being persued by a shartle! ” the person in command said. ” They can’t follow us foever!” An underling commented. ” If we go to warp we may not be able to mantain the scrambler!” A tech said.
” Why not just destroy them and be done with it?” The gunner sugested. ” It might draw unwanted attention ! “The first officer said. ” This is not?” The gunner said in response.
“We have a mission to perform.i want to complete it. We will continue to evade for now!” The commander ordered.
“Ship is going in and out on the screen!” Lesley said. “They are really trying to evade us! ” Wesley said. ” We are not going to let them !” She said. “No we are not!” Wes said.
“There has to be a way to lose them! This cat and mouse game is getting weary some!” The exo said.
“I have an idea. There is a comet nearby. We could ride the comet for a while! “An engineer said. “Do it!” The commander ordered.
The ship kept the scrambler on line until they neared the comet. The ship used the comet to shield there location.
“Lost um. “Lesley said. “Great! Are you sure it was not just a glich in the system? “Wess asked.”no way! There was something . I am sure of it ! This shartle is very well maintained. Because it is nained Galileo,it is well maintaned more then any orther shartle. It is not just a glich!” Lesley said.
“The question is where did they go ?”wess said. “Wess! This could be a sign. We should cut our loses and procede to the star base. Let star fleet figure this out. Every now and then we should let the grown ups do something !” She sugested.
“Whoever it is. I think we retled them. Our finding them was a fluke. Maybe this is a simple case of smugling. What if it is not? Something is very wrong hear! We are hear. We cannot ignore this or hand it off to any one else. This is our isue! We own it!” Wesley said.
“You do know your not in star fleet yet? ” she asked. “Yes i do. Keyword is yet. I am prety sure it will happen !” Wes said. ” A star fleet oficer is bound by a chain of command. Is going off on our own the best idea!” She asked. “We are right hear. We have to follow the evidence !”Wesley said.
” ok lets do it! The case has gone almost totally cold. Where do we go from hear!” She asked.
“We have to try to predict where they will go next! ” Wesley said. “Well if this is a smugling operation they will head towards talaerian space. Talariens turn a blind eye towards smugling. Especially sense many races refuse to trade with them. They did not seam to be heading in that direction !” She said.
“I don’t think they were smugling. There are several bases and colonies in the area!” Wesd said. “You think this is an attack ?” She asked.
He thought it over. “Yes i do. I think we have to assume this is a prelude to an attack !”she said. “If so where will they strike?” She asked.
End of part two

Standard
episode four

Siblings day

Shartle craft galio
“Personal log,Wesley crusher reporting. I am on my way to star base 224 by shartle. I am taking some test in order to qalify for a slot as a canidate for star fleet academy.my sister Lesley is comming with me. ”
“I can’t believe you let me come with you?”Lesley said. “I can’t either. I wanted compony and  data was buisy! ” wes said. “Funny!” She said. “I thought so!” He said.
“Wess i thought you would be excited to do this?  Nervous but excited. This is what you have wanted all your life. This is what you have worked towards. Your that much closer to your goal!”she said.
“That’s just it. Dad keeps teling me that i don’t have to follow him. He says his path was right for him but not necessarily for me. Why does every one want to discourege me from going to the academy ? Why does dad? “Wesley asked.
“Well grand pa put a lot of presue on dad to go to the academy. He does not want to do to you what grampa did to him. “Lesley said.
“Dad has gone to the oposite extreme. He has tried to get me not to be a star fleet officer!”he said.
” star fleet is a dangerous ocupation ! Especially deep space mission. He knows how hard it was for mom. It will be hard for her having her son out there as well. He may be looking out for her! “She said.
“She has been very soportive of my aspirations. If she is opposed to my plans to join star fleet ,i see little evidence of that. “Wesley said.
” At least they notice you. Sometimes i think they forget about me! Your the smart one. Gracie cute and 4 mouths.  Tom is stil in the cute phase. I get lost in the shufle!” She said.
“When I’m off in the academy . You will be so much the center of attention you will bag me to come back. Your time is coming. You will be the focus of there attention . You will complain about just wanting to be left alone!” He said. “Your probably right! “Lesley said.
“You are going to way beyond me. You will go far. “He told her.”you sure?”she asked. “Yes i am. Your just as smart and talented as i am maybe more so. Of course if you tell any one i said it  i will deny it. “Wesley said.
“Why am i not suprised? “She said. They laughed. She saw a blimp on the sansors. “What is it less?” “Wesley said.
” It is not a cloaking device. Someone is trying to cloud there presence. I think it is a low level scrambler.”Lesley said.
” why is someone using a scrambler? My suspicion is that we may be dealing with a smugling operation! ” Wesley said.”my thought as well.  The federation is dedicated to peace and co existent. Many races like to conduct covert criminal activities in our space partially out of spite!” Lesley said.
“We should log in then submit it to star fleet command and be on our way to sb 224! “Wes said.
“We should. Why do i think that you are not planing to do that? “She asked. “By the time we arive at the star base, they could be in non aligned space. This may be our only chance “he said. “Why are you known as the good kid. For the record this was your idea!”Lesley said.
” Very well! I wil take full responsibility for this!” Wesley said. “They will still blame me but ok. “She said. The shartle headed for the signal. Good idea or not they would be investigating. They were on course.
End of part one

Standard