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Mission 1: "Stratagem" 
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Post Re: Mission 1: "Stratagem"
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<USS Sentinel, Deck 1, MD01 1000h>

As Erik leaned against the turbolift wall he massaged the bridge of his nose, his headache had diminished slightly with the two hours of sleep he had managed but what pain had disappeared had been replaced with the listlessness of sleepiness. The turbolift stopped and Erik righted himself while straightening his uniform and strode out onto the bridge. It was just a few steps across the rear of the bridge to the archway that lead to the briefing room in the center area of deck one. He turned slightly as he moved to nod to Lieutenant Junior Grade Fielding who had apparently been made the officer on duty a short time earlier.

Rounding the corner of the archway Erik strode into the briefing room and headed straight for the replicator to order coffee. The room was the second largest room on deck one after the bridge. It was rectangular in shape with a dividing wall separating it from the bridge, its aft facing wall was curved slightly and harbored a large presentation screen. The table at the center of the room was oblong and seated up to ten individuals, more than enough space for Erik's current senior staff members. So consumed with his thirst for coffee Erik nearly missed the dark haired woman staring at him from the table.

"Ah, good morning Lieutenant," Erik said with his back turned to his tactical officer. He ordered his coffee then turned to face the woman, "it is still morning, isn't it?"

“Technically speaking, I believe it is,” Archana said wryly, her smile more of a smirk as she regarded Erik. She'd already had more than her fair share of coffee that morning, and while she was tempted to order another cup, she thought it was best that she cut herself off for a few hours. “I hope that you managed to get a few hours of rest, Commander. We did our level best to keep the ship in one piece while you were away.”

"The event log was a little more lengthy this morning," Erik replied as he came to a stop behind his seat at the head of the table. "But it seems as though your first stint with the bridge went well. Thank you Lieutenant."

“You’re welcome, sir. It was my pleasure,” Archana smiled, and she meant it. Despite the circumstances, overall she had rather enjoyed herself on the bridge. Admittedly, it had felt more than a little nerve-wracking at the time, but since the ship hadn’t broken down on her watch as she had half expected, she looked back on her few hours in charge as something of a success.

The door swished open and Awen strode in quickly, PADD in hand. She still had quite a bit to prepare for - especially with her dual duties on the ship. How she would fit in additional sleep was beyond her, but for now she was needed at the briefing. Nodding to the other two officers, she took a seat to the right of where Erik was standing.

Peter entered only a few steps behind the Sentinel's Executive Officer. Their little impromptu collaboration in the astrometrics lab had revealed several key pieces of information he knew would play an important role in the what was to come. He quickly moved to take position near the foot of the table and did his best to begin collecting his thoughts. This was to be their first meeting as a senior staff and he certainly did not want to make it a repeat of his early conference with Commander Tsereteli and Lieutenant Commander Fala.

After Fredrick's introduction with the Captain and the XO he had made it to his quarters as recommended; cleaned himself up and get several good hours of rest before being notified of the briefing. He Replicated himself some strong black coffee and started his trip across the ship after notifying Lieutenant Zoraan he would be down to relieve her once the Briefing was over.

Several minutes had passed after Lieutenant Commander Armstrong had entered by the time Fredrick arrived. The doors slid open and he garnered several glances to which he returned a nod and took his seat toward the end of the table near the Lieutenant Commander.

Not entirely awake, Darija (PNPC) walked into the room and quickly sat in the nearest chair. She'd been woken partway into her shift for sleep; essentially crawling out of bed and heading straight to the meeting. Hoping to be able to sleep more after the meeting, she wasn't drinking anything caffeinated, instead clutching a PADD.

Erik had waited at the head of the table exchanging nods of acknowledgement with his senior staff as each had arrived. Not counting the 'acting' department chiefs who were all busy attending their departments his senior staff consisted of only four individuals and so numerous seats at the table remained vacant. Despite his concerns over the lack of a few department heads Erik was encouraged by the faces before him, each represented a different trait or spirit that he had come to value. It was not the opening briefing he had hoped for when he had accepted command of the Sentinel but he decided it could be a worse situation.

"Good morning," Erik began though his words sounded redundant in his own ears. "I know that many of you haven't had a chance to rest yet and that we're all very busy so we'll try to keep this short." Erik paused and pressed a few buttons on the PADD sitting before him, activating the rooms large rear display. The image that appeared depicted a map of the sector replete with the newest information gathered by the Sentinel's crew. "As most of you know, Starbase Three received a distress call early this morning and as the only ship in range capable of responding we were given the privilege of launching early. Since that time every department has been working double shifts attempting to make final preparations and ensure that all systems are ready. A few minutes ago we crossed into the outer reaches of the Taevon Expanse; we are bound to begin experiencing some abnormalities from this and I am certain that all of your preparations will be tested."

Erik pulled his chair out and took a seat, "We'll take a few minutes to go over any relevant information uncovered in the last few hours. Commander Fala, if you would be so kind as to begin for us."

"Of course, sir," the Bajoran confirmed. Glancing around the table, she began, "As I'm sure everyone is aware, the Taevon Expanse is a rather volatile area. I've been researching data from other ships that have either gone through or passed near the Expanse and have added it to the Astrometric Lab's computers to better help plot a safe course through the area. I have also sent some information to Engineering and Operations so that we can hopefully lessen the effects the Expanse might have on our sensors."

"Your due diligence is appreciated Commander," Erik said with an impressed tone. He glanced towards Lieutenant Vetrov before continuing, "I was hoping that you could give a summary of the conditions we'll likely experience in the Expanse as well, for the benefit of those not briefed on the region."

Nodding, Awen cleared her throat slightly before continuing, "One of the Expanse's...specialties, shall we say, is rendering ship's sensors useless. It has highly charged particles in varying densities with unpredictable gravametric conditions and rare quantum anomalies. It will undoubtedly cause numerous issues with the ship's systems and we're likely to take damage as well. Some ships that have passed through found what they call 'corridors' which are supposedly safe areas for ship travel. However, these corridors are constantly shifting to varying degrees which makes it difficult to predict if they'll still be present. I believe that Commander Armstrong has some additional information as well..."

"I'm afraid the physical and chemical compositions of the Expanse are not our only concerns," Peter began with an air of warning, "Since the early 2380s, Starfleet has recorded dozens of hostile encounters in and around the region known as the Taevon Expanse. A good majority of these have involved Elyshan factions who compete for control of territory and resources, including those of passing vessels, in order to assert their dominance and hopefully gain some influence with worlds closer to the heart of the Elyshan Empire."

Archana silently thanked Krishna that they had managed to get a full complement of quantum torpedoes before they left Starbase Three. “Commander,” she said as soon as Armstrong finished, “do you think it’s possible that the Elyshans are directly involved with our current mission? That perhaps they have something to do with the distress call the starbase received?”

"We can't rule them out completely, but I have to admit...I find it hard to believe one of the factions would be involved in this," Peter continued as he surveyed the faces of those seated around the table to see how they were reacting to this information, "they've been awfully quiet since we defeated the Elyshan Guard at Starbase 386 two years ago and a combined factional fleet at Starbase Gatekeeper just last year."

"I concur," Erik said with a nod. "While possible the probability of Elyshan involvement is low. This situation isn't entirely characteristic of their tactics either, only rarely was Starfleet aware of a faction attack while it could have made a difference. Usually we only knew of them because of the wreckage left behind. No, if anything nefarious is at work here its something else entirely."

As the commander was speaking, Peter happened to glance down at the PADD resting on the table between his arms. A small symbol in the upper right-hand corner of the display indicated to him there was a text-only message waiting to be reviewed. He discretely keyed open the message to find a few brief lines of text from Thomas (PNPC). According to the timestamp of the message, had only just arrived. What surprised him most, however, was the content of the message Thomas had relayed to him.

Erik couldn't help but notice when his Strat-Ops officer's attention was pulled into his PADD, it probably wasn't an unusual occurrence considering the man's line of work but the expression on Armstrong's typically revealing face was quite uncharacteristic. The text that Peter was reading was no ordinary report, of this Erik was certain, "what is it Commander?"

"An answer...or maybe another question," Peter replied as he tried to quickly process the information in his mind into a more presentable form, "I've had a couple members of my department going over the communications records from Deep Space Three relating to the distress call that was received. We've not had too much luck reconstructing the data so far, but they've found something else...the Romulan warbird Shroud of Rovaran was reported missing near the Expanse right around the same time our listening post first received the alien distress call."

Awen frowned at the news from Peter. "A Romulan warbird? What was the ship doing near the Taevon Expanse in the first place? I can't imagine a reason for them to take the risk of going through that region of space...any Federation destination they would have would not have required them to go through it." Pondering it for a moment, she added, "The other possibilities don't entirely make sense to me either - that they're the ones who attacked the other vessel whose distress call we received, for instance." Though she was no longer in charge of Security/Tactical, her training led her to consider the tactical implications of the information. Overall, though, it just didn't seem to add up.

Erik leaned back in his seat with his fingers arched as he listened to his officer's comments, he agreed with Awen that the presence of a Romulan vessel in the expanse was highly unusual and that something didn't add up. What concerned him more however was that he had not heard news of the Warbird in his daily briefing from Starfleet a few hours earlier, "what was the source of that data Commander Armstrong? Would I be mistaken if I assumed that your staff didn't pull it from the standard comms channels?"

Like Commander Tsereteli and Commander Fala, Peter was having a difficult time understanding how a Romulan warbird could have gone missing so far from even the most remote edge of Romulan territory. The Romulan government had enough on their plate just dealing with trying to maintain order within their borders. Besides, he would have expected there to have been at least something about the warbird in one of the official briefings they received before departing the station. "I've had two of my people going over the communications records from Deep Space Three since we left the station," Peter explained for the benefit of the others seated around the table, "looking for anything that might help us get a better picture of what to expect when we arrive at the source of this distress call."

Peter paused for a moment to glance down once more at the text-only message Thomas had sent him. There really wasn't much to the message which either meant there wasn't any more information to be gained or they just hadn't been able to fit those pieces of the puzzle together yet. "The answer to your question...would be no," he continued, "This is the first I've heard of this particular report which leads me to believe it could very well have come from one of the corrupted data blocks."

"A tactical scenario was always a possibility," Erik replied with a laden voice. "But I think this information forces us to assume that combat is imminent." Erik paused and glanced from Archana to Frederick and back. "I know your departments have been working overtime to prepare us and I trust that we will be prepared. We'll have to shift attention from technical systems alone to personnel preparedness as well, have your teams get rest as they can, including yourselves."

"Engineering will be ready Captain." Fredrick returned with all confidence. After hearing Lieutenant Commander Armstrong mention a warbird in the area, he had already begun to create a list of preparations that needed to be made in his head.

Archana, who had been watching the exchange in rapt attention, nodded in turn. Romulans always meant trouble, and the Betazoid still wasn’t completely convinced that these Elyshans that Armstrong had spoken of couldn’t be involved in some way. In her experience, it was best to prepare for any possibility, no matter how slim. “I have my team members getting sleep in shifts for now, Commander. They should all be rested and ready for any sort of conflict, and I’ll be personally overseeing any final preparations.”

"Lieutenant NaVer," Erik said as he turned his attention to the Sentinel's acting head physician. "Make sure you're prepared to take patients that have sustained combat injuries and ensure you all get some rest."

Listening to everyone's reports had given the Trill something to concentrate on and thus wake up more. Thus far she had remained silent, though concerned about the news. Darija nodded and responded to Erik, "Absolutely, sir; we've already put in place a sleep schedule for the three of us so that we'll all get some sleep before arriving. Those awake will be finishing preparations...considering the potential additional patients we may be getting, I'll look into some triage centers and volunteers with basic medical training."

Erik nodded his approval toward the Medical officer before tapping a few functions into the control pad on the table activating the presentation screen on the room's aft wall. After a second or two a roughly detailed map of the region around them came into focus with the Sentinel's position indicated by a small white flashing Sentinel class silhouette against the backdrop of the ominous colors of the expanse. The courses that flight control had plotted appeared next with the rout traveled thus far in solid white and the optional routs forward showing with varying colors indicating probable threat levels.

Erik stood and with hands clasped behind his back took a moment to study the screen for himself before turning back to the officers assembled. "Whatever awaits us we'll soon find out, the clock is ticking... Any questions?"

OFF

A Joint post written by:

Lieutenant Commander Fala Awen
Executive Officer

and

Lieutenant JG Darija NaVer
Assistant Chief Medical Officer
(Played by Fala Awen)

and

Lieutenant Commander Peter Armstrong
Chief Strategic Operations Officer

and

Lieutenant Archana Sen
Chief Security/Tactical Officer

and

Lieutenant Fredrick Vetrov
Chief Engineer

and

_________________
Commodore Erik Tsereteli
Commanding Officer
USS-Sentinel NCC-83680


Mon Dec 03, 2012 7:08 pm
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Post Re: Mission 1: "Stratagem"
ON:
<<USS Sentinel, Holoeck, MD01, 1045>>

By Archana’s estimation, she’d only managed to sleep for three hours in the last thirty. That was not unheard of in and of itself, but considering all that had needed doing in the last eight hours, it was no wonder that she, like so many of her fellow crewmembers, was feeling exhausted. But for all her exhaustion, she knew that sleep would not come easily to her. A sort of nervous energy had been propelling her onwards for hours now, and if she had any hope of actually getting some rest in the few hours allotted her, she knew that she’d need to find a way to expel some of that energy first.

And so she found herself before the holodeck after the senior staff briefing. She didn’t have a particular program in mind; anything would do so long as it helped her to get rid of some of this unrelenting restlessness. Archana was half inclined to load the walking program Erik had shown her a few days before. It was a lovely, peaceful environment, and it certainly had some happy memories to go with it. As she poured over some of Erik’s holodeck files in an attempt to locate it, she noted to herself that being a friend of the Commander’s certainly had its perks, especially when it came to enjoying open access to his not inconsiderable collection of programs.

In the thick of her search, another program caught her eye. This one was a holo-novel—Erik had far more of these sorts of programs than Archana had imagined—and looked rather appealing. Dracula was an ancient classic, and one that the Betazoid as a voracious reader had enjoyed since she was a girl. It would take too long to play through the entire story, but now that her curiosity was piqued, she wanted to at least have a taste of the program Erik had created. Instructing the computer to load it somewhere in the middle, Archana stepped inside the holodeck and smiled as the streets of Victorian London greeted her eyes.

See the amazing Cinematographe! a voice cried out and echoed from walls of the buildings that lined the narrow street. A wonder of modern civilization! The greatest attraction of the century! A true wonder of the world! The denizens of London hurried about giving the causeway a truly lively, bustling feeling. Each individual went about their business seemingly unconcerned by the call and equally oblivious to those who interloped among them.

Archana had been born and raised in London, but this was not the city as she remembered it. This was a dirty and smoggy city, teeming with people and full of a gritty sort of energy. Gentlemen and ladies brushed past her in a continuous stream, and the Betazoid felt momentarily out of place in her Starfleet uniform compared to all of the smartly dressed denizens of this holographic world. Shrugging to herself, she joined the flow of foot traffic, allowing herself to be practically pulled along at a brisk pace with no particular destination in mind. Since this was a holo-novel, she had no doubt that she’d be directed to the place she needed to be sooner or later.

"See me," a voice commanded with arcane presence and Archana heard it as if the voice had been uttered only an inch from her ear. "See me now..."

Archana felt warm and uncomfortable as that strange, almost bodiless voice reached her ears. If this was a special effect of the holonovel, it was one she’d never experienced before. Her gaze was drawn almost by compulsion to an elegant but oddly out of place man who stood across the street. He was staring straight at her, and as if under some spell, Archana stared right back. The man was handsome, but markedly different from the other characters around him. His dark mahogany hair flowed freely to his shoulders in waves beneath his top hat, and a pair of strange, colored glasses was perched on the bridge of his nose. Though he managed to blend in with the rest of the Victorian gentlemen well enough, those discrepancies in his appearance marked him as something other, somehow—someone entirely different. Although she couldn’t have been looking at him for more than a few seconds, it felt far longer than that by the time she tore her eyes away from his. Feeling oddly troubled, the Betazoid instinctively ducked into the nearest shop, already trying to forget all the experience as she perused the wares for sale there.

Opposite the store front window was a long counter of polished oak and behind that a wall of shelves lined with jars containing all manner of herbs. The store Archana had entered was an apothecary, an ancient earth place of healing remedies and by the looks of it a well stocked one. The store was empty and quiet save for the labored footsteps of a white haired man who slowly approached from a side room only accessible from behind the counter. The elderly man looked upon Archana and seemingly unaware of her strange attire addressed her without hesitation, "Good day madame." The old man paused briefly as if taking note of the young woman's agitation. "My, my, you look as though you have a dreadful chill. Perhaps an elixir of Laudanum is what you seek?"

Was her discomfiture that obvious? Archana smiled weakly at the shopkeeper. “You must have read my mind,” she said, having no real interest in anything at all—least of all laudanum—but eager for a task to occupy her for the moment. Noticing the strange look the man gave her, Archana cleared her throat and spoke again, searching for a phrase that was a little more appropriate for the novel’s historical setting. “That is, you are very astute, sir. A bottle of laudanum, if you would be so kind.” Although the modern woman felt a little silly in speaking so stiltedly, the old man nodded in acceptance, turning slowly to fetch the necessary bottle for her.

By the time Archana was ready to return to the busy London street, it was with a renewed sense of adventure. Even with her limited time, she was eager to see where the novel would progress from here, and even hoped that she’d get to meet the legendary Van Helsing before she had to pause the program. It seemed, however, that she was a little too eager to explore the holo-novel. Striding out of the apothecary shop’s door with her new purchase in hand, she had taken no more than two steps before she ran straight into another person. Gasping as the bottle was jarred out of her hands, she waited for the inevitable shatter of glass as it tumbled to the ground.

With a speed and graceful agility that seemed somehow unnatural the person with whom Archana had collided managed to catch the falling Laudanum vial in less than a heartbeat. The sheer implausibility of it struck the security officer speechless but it could have been as much the realization that the stranger was none other than the man with the tinted glasses.

"My humblest apologies," the man said slowly with a thick eastern accent that seemed to labor over each word. He stood there with his gaze transfixed on Archana's for a long moment, the veiled but intense longing in his eyes obvious to the Betazoid. With an innocent if not strained smile he continued, "Forgive my ignorance, I, ah, am recently arrived from abroad and I, I do not know your species."

Once the temporary shock wore off, Archana smiled at him tentatively. “It’s all right,” she said slowly. “I should have watched where I was going.” In the few minutes she’d spent inside the apothecary’s shop, she had almost succeeded in putting the strange man out of her mind. Standing so close beside him now, she wasn’t sure how she ever really could have. Hologram or not, his presence seemed to be both powerful and compelling, and the way he was looking at her was...unnerving. Flattering, in some odd way, but definitely unnerving.

As if suddenly realizing that she was staring, Archana took a quick step back. “I should be going. Thank you for saving my bottle,” she said, a little embarrassed by how nervous she sounded. He was nothing but a hologram, after all, and she was the Chief Security and Tactical Officer of a Federation starship. What reason did she have to be nervous? Holding her hand out, she waited expectantly for the stranger to return her purchase to her.

The strange man stood motionless simply staring at Archana for an uncomfortably long moment before smiling enough to reveal a set of peculiarly misshapen incisors. With the same preternatural speed and grace that he had exhibited before he took the top of her inverted hand in the palm of his and placed the vial in her open palm with the other hand. The gesture was both sensitive yet predatory in nature and the pressure with which he gripped while not painful gave the Betazoid pause. "But of course madame..."

One glance at those unnatural teeth of his was enough for Archana to put the final puzzle piece into place. This man had to be Dracula, the holo-novel's titular character. His accent should have been a dead giveaway, if only she hadn’t let herself get so distracted by him in the first place. No wonder he was so oddly out of place here, not to mention so persistent. Had the computer automatically cast her in the role of one of his victims? Harmless holo-novel or not, she didn’t like that thought at all.

Ready to yank her hand away from his, the Betazoid’s dark eyes grew wide as a horrible realization dawned. Standing so near to him, with her hand held so firmly in his, Archana suddenly became aware that she could sense him—actually sense him, as though he really were flesh and blood, or the nearest equivalent, standing there before her. The impression was at once overwhelming and oddly intangible, not to mention completely impossible. But in that moment the intensity emanating from this personification of Dracula felt very, very real. Reacting instinctively, she threw herself back from him and cried out in a clear voice, “Computer, end program!”

The scene of Victorian London dissipated around Archana almost instantly but as it did the strange man with tinted glasses remained for a moment, his grip on the Betazoid's hands tightening slightly and his predatory smile broadening. His visage lingered a second longer before it too dissipated into nothingness.

The moment Dracula and his awful smile disappeared, so too did the Betazoid’s disturbing empathic impressions. The fear and alarm that had crawled along her spine were not so quick to flee, however. Glancing jerkily around her, she began to back away slowly towards the holodeck’s now visible doors, scrambling to come to terms with what, if anything, had just happened. Either Erik’s holo-novel included some sort of a high-tech design that made the experience that much more real, or she was clearly losing her mind. Either way, she wasn’t about to turn her back on the room under any circumstances.

Once in the relative safety of corridor again, Archana stared at the wide holodeck doors for a long while, half expecting Dracula to come striding through them from the other side. It wasn’t until a passing crewmember walked by, slanting her an odd glance, that she finally felt her unease slipping away. “Sleep, Sen,” she muttered to herself, forcing her feet to move in the direction of her quarters. “Sleep is what you need.” With one last glance behind her at the holodeck doors, Archana hurried to her quarters, and didn’t stop again until she was safely locked inside them.

OFF:

A JP brought to you by:

Dracula (PNPC)
played by: Commander Tsereteli

and

_________________
Lieutenant Archana Sen
Chief Security/Tactical Officer
USS Sentinel NCC-83680


Tue Dec 04, 2012 10:01 am
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Post Re: Mission 1: "Stratagem"
ON

<<USS Sentinel, Bridge, MD01, 1055>>

The bridge had been quiet for most of the twenty minutes since Erik had taken over there, each of the other officers on duty were junior officers and each likely feeling the fatigue of a long shift. The view screen had remained activated as Erik preferred and between paragraphs on his PADD he glanced up to watch the slowly condensing green mist of the expanse for a few moments. It was during one of these breaks from reading that the stillness on the bridge was suddenly interrupted.

The officers on duty each began exchanging glances as a slight vibration could be felt by their feet through the ships floor and their quiet curiosity quickly turned to alarm as the entirety of the hull began to rumble. Erik gripped an armrest with a hand as he turned to examine each of the stations in view, his gaze coming to a stop on Lieutenant Fielding at the Operations console. "Lieutenant, report..."

Snapping to attention, Christopher (PNPC) frowned as he consulted the readouts on his console. Despite the ominous rumblings, the computer didn’t seem to think that anything unusual was happening. As if to reflect this, the vibrations came to an abrupt stop altogether. “Odd,” he mumbled to himself. Preparing to give a temporary all-clear to the Commander, he was waylaid by the sudden flickering of the overhead lights. Almost immediately, his console came to life, beeping insistently to grab his attention once more.

“Commander, it looks like the ship’s experiencing some sort of a power surge, origin unknown,” Christopher stated clearly. “Running diagnostics now, sir.”

"Very good Lieutenant," Erik said as he quickly found his balance and stood from his chair. He made his way to the Ops console and leaned over the seat behind the Operations officer to watch his work. He was no expert in the technical fields but he knew enough to be concerned, "Lieutenant, am I reading that right?"

“I’m afraid so, Commander,” Christopher confirmed lowly. “Whatever it was caused a slight power loss and disrupted most of our systems. Everything seems to be returning back to normal now, though.” Tapping a few additional commands, his frown noticeably deepened. “Now this is really odd. There appears to be 500 gigaquads of new information in the central computer, sir. It certainly wasn’t there before.”

Erik raised an eyebrow at the revelation and followed along with Mr. Fielding on the Ops terminal. He had a very negative feeling about what was transpiring, "Odd is one way to put it... What was the source, another ship?"

Christopher was silent for a moment while his fingers flew across the console. “No, it's not another ship. In fact, I can’t locate any apparent source at all, sir. One moment it wasn't there, and then the next...it was. I can't even isolate the new data, not when it's moving so fast. Do you see how it’s dispersing from the mainframe throughout all the other systems?” He tapped his finger on corresponding readout, shaking his head in sheer puzzlement. In all his years in Starfleet, he'd never seen anything quite like this. The fact that it had happened on his watch didn't sit well with the operations officer, either.

"Actually no, I don't follow," Erik admitted, he couldn't see exactly what the operations officer was referring to but he trusted the man's word. "But that's beside the point. Let me see if I understand the overall point; we just received a large quantity of unidentifiable data from an unknown source, right in front of our eyes and now you cant trace it?"

Running a hand through his hair, Christopher nodded in confirmation. When his commanding officer put it that way, it really did sound rather bad. This was not the way he envisioned his first week aboard the ship going, but then again, his luck hadn’t exactly been all that great as of late. “I wish I could disagree, but that about sums it up, actually.”

"How can that be Lieutenant?" Erik asked as he stood straight and crossed his arms. He was obviously perturbed, the Captain didn't enjoy being at such a loss, "Hypotheses?"

“If I could tell you more about its origin, I would, sir. Frankly, though, this seems to fall within a science officer’s purview more than mine,” Christopher said, keeping his eyes on his console as he spoke. He could offer a few inexpert guesses as to the mysterious new data’s conception but little else. At the moment, though, he was more concerned with making sure it didn’t cause any more disruptions to the ship’s systems.

Accepting that he would not have the answer he wanted Erik shifted his focus to the next task, "find that data Lieutenant," he replied crisply. There was no real evidence that whatever had just transpired was malicious or anything more than another anomaly caused by the strangeness of the expanse but Erik hated to leave such things to chance. After returning to his chair he mused that it would be fortuitous if this was the worst that was to come but somehow he doubted it very much.

While he wanted to follow Tsereteli’s orders, Christopher knew that it was next to impossible for the time being. According to his console, all traces of the foreign data had simply disappeared. Either it had somehow removed itself from the ship—if only they should be so lucky—or it was now so deeply imbedded inside the myriad other data contained in the ship’s systems that it could no longer be isolated by usual means. Shaking his head in disbelief, Christopher couldn’t help but wonder if this entire scenario fell under the category of ghostly occurrences he himself had so recently dismissed. The term ‘ghost data’ did seem fitting under the circumstances, at any rate.

“All systems are functioning normally again, Commander,” Christopher said, offering the one piece of good news he had. “We’ll need to run a level 1 diagnostic before we definitively locate the data, sir. If it’s even still onboard, that is.” That particular diagnostic would require most of the Operations Department to manually evaluate the ship's systems and operating mechanisms, a task that always took several hours and necessitated taking entire systems offline at a time. Unfortunately, that meant they likely wouldn’t get the chance to do so until they were safely finished with their current mission.

Erik knew full well what his Operations officer was implying and it only deepened the Commander's frustration. There was little he could do about it until the Sentinel had returned to port and he knew that there was little sense in dwelling on it. As he returned to his seat he attempted to clear his mind and re-focus in the mission at hand. "Very well Lieutenant," Erik said finally. "Let's hope that whatever it was it has no bearing on where we're heading."

OFF

A JP written by:

Lieutenant Archana Sen
Chief Security/Tactical Officer

and

_________________
Commodore Erik Tsereteli
Commanding Officer
USS-Sentinel NCC-83680


Wed Dec 12, 2012 8:02 pm
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Chief Engineer
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Post Re: Mission 1: "Stratagem"
ON:
<<USS Sentinel, Main Engineering, MD01, 1045>>

Fredrick walked to Main Engineering after the mission briefing to relieve his Assistant Chief from duty to get some rest. Fredrick had done nothing but rest the last few days, he was ready for something interesting to happen. The doors to engineering slid open and he stepped up to the rail at the upper level and looked down on the room. Everyone was hard at work as expected, Lucretia had them working on a laundry list of tasks that he had reviewed earlier.

He worked his way down to the main floor and approached Lucretia from behind; she was leaned over a console conversing with a crewman who was pushing commands into the screen as fast as the Assistant Chief could speak them. He waited quietly until she finished her train of thought before he spoke, "Assistant Chief, I believe you are off duty in a few minutes. What is our Status?"

Lucretia jumped slightly as she spun about to face her superior, despite his stature the new Lieutenant was quite stealthy and the younger Engineer found that very frustrating. Doing her best to stifle her emotion she replied, "we had some kind of 'hiccup' with the main systems a moment ago actually. Everything went haywire for a few seconds then seemed to return to normal, you might have noticed?"

Fredrick nodded to Lucretia, "I had and was hoping you had something for me. It sounded like we lost power for a few moments." Fredrick looked at the screens they were gathered around. "I see the fusion reactor output stayed constant, which means power was diverted or consumed by something... The use of that much power over a small amount of time means something did a lot of work very fast..."

He turns to Lucretia, "I would like to know what is being done with my power Lieutenant. Pull up the logs for all the subsystems and see if there was any one system that created the power draw. I would like to know what we lost that much juice to. If that does not reveal anything see if there was a spike in heat anywhere on the ship. Let me know what you find in the logs and then get some rest if you can."

"Welcome to the expanse." Fredrick whispered to himself and began the walk to his office.

Lucretia eyed her superior with slight annoyance once his back was to her, he was only doing his job but something about the man's tone made her bristle. "I think you are probably right," she began equally annoyed that he was indeed right. "My initial analysis of the malfunction just finished and it seems as though we passed through a particle field of unknown classification at about the same time as the drain. I'm not sure how but something in the 'cloud' sapped power directly via the warp coils.."

Fredrick nodded. "Thank you Lieutenant. By your leave I will take Engineering and continue the diagnostics." Fredrick understood his attitude and personality could take some getting used to. He knew he could be difficult to report into, but he had his reasons. He watched the lift doors close behind Lucretia and shook off the train of thought; there were more pressing matters that needed to be attended to.

OFF

A Joint Post featuring:

Lieutenant (JG) Lucretia Zoraan
Asst. Chief of Engineering
USS Sentinel
(Played by Commander Erik Tsereteli)

and

_________________
Lieutenant Fredrick M Vetrov
Chief Engineering Officer
USS Sentinel NCC-83680


Mon Jan 14, 2013 2:52 pm
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Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2013 3:10 pm
Posts: 3
Post Re: Mission 1: "Stratagem"
Arrival

Back post....

ON

<Deep Space 3, Mission Day -10?>

It had been a long flight to DS3 where she was to rendezvous with her new assignment. The only thing that kept her sane and from total boredom on the transport was that she was was the senior pilot of the newest long range shuttle, a craft that would help fill out the USS Sentinel's compliment of shuttles. She had the most experience of all test pilots with the new Type 18 refit shuttle and it's upgraded systems capable of withstanding the anomalies of space such as the Taevon Expanse, Wormholes and Badlands, to name a few of the more well known. As the shuttels primary pilot she was being transferred to the USS Sentinel as well.

The Lieutenant Commander in Intel Grey had convinced the 'Powers that Be' to transfer Miracle to the Sentinel, though the assignment was also to give him and extra set of eyes on the frontier. She of course had jumped at the chance to learn and fly a craft with the latest shuttle capabilities. She had been an ideal choice with her past record of surviving a war and joining Starfleet albeit in an unorthodox manner, which the Intel officer had a good laugh over and how she had conducted herself during the major fiasco of the Valorous.

Their relationship had been initiated far earlier of course, he had even had a few words with her when she was attending Starfleet Academy. She had impressed him with her answers and capabilities. He could see that she was a well trained operative and whomever had trained her, did a good job. Along with her fierce competitive drive to succeed where others floated along relying on family name and patronages.

Once arriving on DS-3, everyone took off in different directions, some to see family, others to the nearest bar and those that were returning to duty, to their department heads to attend meetings. After the last of her passengers departed the shuttle Miracle undocked from the station and piloted her shuttle to it's new berthing and her new assignment, the USS Sentinel.

As Senior Pilot of the new shuttle she had been given the privilege of naming the ship as she saw fit and she had, after careful consideration, chosen the title; "NCCS Rodent's Revenge".
Once it secured in the shuttle bay, she sauntered across the loading deck into her boss's office and once she was admitted in to see the Chief Shuttle Officer laid her orders down on the person's neatly organized desk, "Lieutenant Jay-Gee Miracle." She smiled at the Officer who looked her over with a bit of surprise.

She waited as the Officer looked over the PADD that contained her orders, observing his reaction when he realized that she was the newest addition to his deck crew, along with her own shuttle to boot. "I see that Star Fleet has entrusted you with your own ship, Miss Mouse," he looked up at her as he transferred the information from the PADD to the ship's Database. "I take it that you are aware of our departure in the next twenty four hours? I'd advice you to get settled in quickly and familiarize yourself with the ship's command staff and your duties here in the shuttle bay. Since Fleet has given the shuttle into your care, it will be your responsibility to keep it maintained and cared for."

"Aye Aye Sirra," Miracle nodded speaking softly. "Will there be anything else?"

"Have your belongings transferred from the station to the ship, post haste." Her new senior officer said before dismissing her.

Miracle could feel his eyes on her as she left his office. He was obviously puzzled as to why fleet would put her in a shuttle instead of at the head of the Ship's Flight Department. With a shrug he finished up his paperwork and sent the additional info up the chain of command, his shuttle department was full of staff and a full compliment of shuttles that included the experimental shuttle that had just arrived with its own pilot.

<b>CURRENT</b>

<<USS Sentinel, Main Shuttle Bay, MD01, 1045>>

Miracle smiled delightfully as she puttered around her shuttle 'NCC Rodent's Revenge'. With no responsibilities other than her shuttle she had been reading up on the capabilities of the Type 18 refit, when the ship gave off an odd harmonic and vibration. "Squek! Iz could do better than whomevers on ship's helm!" Softly exclaimed to the cieling of her shuttle.

When the rumbling stopped, Miracle just shook her head and continued on with her work aboard the shuttle, studying each of the features and systems that made up the ships capabilities. She was itching to take 'NCC Rodent's Revenge' out into the Taevon Expanse to see how well it held up to the stress of actually being there.

Even when she was officially off duty, she spent more time learning her ship than socializing with other officers of the same department. She saw the Senior Officers coming and going about the ship, but had no reason to associate with them, she kept to herself as just another faceless Officer aboard the Sentinel. She enjoyed the relaxing assignment. A whole different than being in the limelight of being a department head where she had to quell rumors with facts. She was enjoying being part of the 'crew' or peons, getting to know them a lot better as a peer.

Once the rumbling had stopped, she ran By-the-book" Level 1 Diagnostic to make sure the shuttle was still uncontaminated. She blinked as there was several terabytes of data trapped in the buffer that didn't come from the USS Sentinel.

"Squeeeee...." Miracle spoke softly, transferring the information to a Data-PADD and picking up a different PADD, began to take notes on the operation of the Volga Class. This would be a quite a coo in intelligence and R&D. And Science if it ever got out. At least the RR's computer security programming was up and working as it should.

OFF

Written By:

_________________
Lt JG Miracle
Chief Flight Control Officer
USS Sentinel


Wed Jan 30, 2013 5:50 pm
Profile
Post Re: Mission 1: "Stratagem"
ON: [[Junior Officers' Quarters, USS Sentinel, Time Unknown]]

Thomas' (PNPC) eyes fluttered open. After blinking a few times to clear the vestiges of sleep from his eyes, the young Betazoid realized he was looking up at the ceiling of his own quarters. The funny thing was that he couldn't even remember how he'd made it from the Strategic Operations office to his own quarters. One moment, he and Charlie (PNPC) had been going over the communications records from Deep Space Three, and the next...

"Well that's typical," a coarse masculine voice chided from a dark corner. The dark silhouette moved closer slowly before his features became clear in the dim lighting of the room, a bearded middle aged man with a stern demeanor and adorned with Starfleet regalia who was all too familiar to Thomas. "You can't even remember how you got here can you? How you ever made it through the academy is beyond me but that's beside the point, here you are..."

The young Betazoid felt his blood run cold. It had been five or six years since he'd last heard his father's voice. Even then, their encounters had been rather brief and to the point. Subspace communications were merely a formality with him. He was a Starfleet admiral who always had a great deal more to be concerned with than his own son. "You...you can't be real," Thomas stammared as the realization slowly dawned on him, "You're not real."

"You always were one for stating the obvious," the man chided in return. "But this time you aren't exactly right my boy, I'm as real as you make me and I assure you, it was you that brought me here. What is it this time Thomas, why am I here?"

Thomas would have loved nothing more than to prove his father wrong. Short of that, he might have settled for never having to see the man in his life again. The problem was that his father always seemed to have a knack for showing up when Thomas least expected it and, when his father did speak to him, it was with just enough truth that Thomas would start to doubt himself. Add to that the authority and bearing of a Starfleet flag officer and it was a formidable situation indeed. Thomas felt himself cringe involuntarily at the harsh rebuke.

The Admiral snorted with disapproval at his son's lack of a response and turned toward the closest window, a window that contained only the black of space. No stars or other celestial objects could be seen through the porthole and the darkness that it contained seemed to hungrily devour the light coming from the room yet despite this, the Admiral stared out as if transfixed on some distant object. "It's out there Tomas, it cant be seen or smelled or heard nor touched but its coming..." The visage of the Admiral turned back toward his son and spoke with an uncharacteristically existential tone. "Do you know what 'it' is?"

"I...I...don't know...sir," Thomas muttered nervously.

"Judgement," The Admiral said menacingly as he turned back to face Thomas. The Admiral's eyes had gone black as if to match the darkness out the window and a sadistic smile appeared on his face. "Your moment to prove yourself and your ultimate failure..."

...and there it was. Thomas had known it was only a matter of time before they got around to the real reason his father was there, the only reason his father had ever made contact with him. "I don't have to prove myself to you," Thomas said sharply, though he immediately regretted his decision to speak out. The glaring look he was getting from his father was enough to make him physically withdraw even as a wave of negative emotion slammed against Thomas' mental barriers and threatened to overwhelm them.

The Admiral laughed aloud, a laugh that could only be intended to cause discomfort and to infuriate. "You still don't get it... All you've ever tried to do is prove yourself to your father and deny all along that its what you were doing. Wake up kid, you have nothing to prove to anyone but yourself... Who do you think has really been holding you back all of this time? Me? I'm a thousand light years away. You, I'm afraid, are your own worst enemy..."

Thomas was doing his best to push back against the wave of emotions, but it seemed the harder he tried, the more difficult it became. His father's laughing wasn't doing much to help the situation and it was all the young Betazoid could do to keep from crawling back under his covers like a scared child.

"You're weak," The Admiral went on as if wanting to push Thomas to the breaking point. "So weak in fact that you are losing Charlie anyway. Why would he desire someone so pathetic as you?"

"No...no...that's not true," Thomas protested, but the words sounded weak, even to him.

[[Strategic Operations Office, USS Sentinel, Mission Day 01, 0928 Hours]]

Charlie (PNPC) leaned forward so that his elbows were resting against the edge of what was really Lieutenant Commander Armstrong's desk. It had been a long morning for everyone and the young cultural specialist was no exception. He and Thomas had spent the last few hours pouring over everything they'd managed to get from Deep Space Three that might possibly shed some light on the source of this mysterious distress call with little success. They'd been down nearly a dozen different rabbit holes in search of answers to some very important questions only to come up with more questions on top of that.

A faint sound caused Charlie to look up from where he had been studying the desktop display. His attention slowly drifted over to where Thomas lay curled up on the office's small couch, trying to catch a few moments' rest where he could before they would be expected to brief Commander Armstrong on their findings. Charlie was just about to go back to sifting through communications records when he saw Thomas shift slightly. It didn't seem like much at first, but then Charlie noticed something strange about the way Thomas' expression had changed.

"No...no...that's not true," he heard Thomas mutter aloud, as if he were desperately trying to convince someone of that fact.

"Thomas," Charlie said quietly. He got up from where he was sitting and slowly made his way over to the edge of the couch nearest Thomas' head.

[[Junior Officers' Quarters, USS Sentinel, Time Unknown]]

"Believe what you want," The Admiral admonished as he began to back away from Thomas, his arms held wide as if letting go of the situation. "Keep telling yourself that everything is okay, because deep down we both know that everything is not... Remember... It is coming..."

"No...no..." Thomas protested even weaker than before.

[[Strategic Operations Office, USS Sentinel, Mission Day 01, 0932 Hours]]

"Thomas," Charlie said again. He lowered himself onto the arm of the couch and placed a hand on the younger man's shoulder, rubbing it gently back and forth in an attempt to rouse him from his slumber.

"No...no..." Thomas muttered weakly.

"Thomas," Charlie repeated with a bit more urgency. His hand grasped Thomas' shoulder and gave it a shake. This seemed to have the desired effect as Thomas awoke with a start, sitting up so suddenly that he nearly knocked Charlie right to the deck. The latter readjusted his position as best he could without letting go. "Thomas...it's okay," Charlie continued, his arm now wrapped loosely around Thomas' shoulders, "you fell asleep."

Thomas didn't seem quite sure what to make of the situation. He slowly gazed around the room before looking up at Charlie for a moment as if unsure of where he was or what was going on. The moment of disorientation passed and Thomas leaned over to press his head against Charlie's side. Silence descended on the two of them as Charlie tightened his grip around Thomas' shoulders into a reassuring hug. Sure, they probably should have been working on preparing their report for Commander Armstrong, but something told him this was more important right now.

OFF

A Joint Mission Post by:

Admiral Richard Gates (PNPC)
Starfleet Operations
Played by: Cdre Tsereteli

Ensign Charlie Young (PNPC)
Cultural Research Specialist
USS Sentinel
Played by: LtCmdr Armstrong

and

Ensign Thomas Gates (PNPC)
Strategic Operations Officer
USS Sentinel
Played by: LtCmdr Armstrong


Wed Jan 30, 2013 9:39 pm
Chief Security/Tactical Officer
User avatar

Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2012 8:51 pm
Posts: 17
Post Re: Mission 1: "Stratagem"
ON:
<<USS Sentinel, Sen’s Quarters, MD 01, 1525>>

Archana dreamt of strange things.

There were shapes and colors and sounds that were totally foreign to her, nearly indecipherable, and yet a sense of recognition prevailed. As far as she could tell she was alone, walking or flying or simply floating through a place that was both strange and oddly familiar to her. But she wasn’t alone, not really. She was well aware that someone else was there, and it was unusual and expected, uncomfortable and predictable all at the same time.

When she awoke, the dream faded with each blink of her sleep heavy eyes until there was nothing left but a vague impression. Lying on her side in the darkness for several long moments, Archana finally pushed herself up onto her elbow, looking over at the bedside table where her trusty old alarm clock sat.

She had a few minutes before she was due on the Bridge, and it was with a feeling of ease and relaxation that she pulled herself out of bed and began her familiar routine of getting ready for the day. No matter that it was late in the afternoon, hours later than her usual morning ritual of rising and shining. She felt well rested and content, confident in her own abilities as she thought ahead to the mission that lay before them.

Archana hummed to herself as she carefully brushed out her hair. Its length was well past regulation, she was sure, but perfectly manageable and more than acceptable when gathered up into its customary upsweep. She wasn’t about to cut off her hair just to please the higher ups in Starfleet—not if any of her superiors onboard the Sentinel didn’t really mind, anyway.

It wasn’t until the Betazoid was putting on a clean uniform that she even thought about her experience on the holodeck hours earlier. With a small grimace, she sighed at her own foolishness. In hindsight, the whole thing was more than a little silly. She’d never been prone to hallucinations, but that was obviously what had happened. There was simply no other explanation. Holograms did not emit emotions, nor did they overstay their welcome once the program itself was ended. It was almost embarrassing to think just how disturbed the whole thing had made her feel. She was a seasoned Security Officer, and proud of it, too. Fictitious vampires in cheesy holo-novels shouldn’t have had any effect on someone like her. No, she was certain now that it had all been a figment of her imagination.

Or, at the very least, it was the result of traveling so near to the Expanse. They’d been warned that some people experienced hallucinations inside the Expanse. Archana had never expected to be one of them, but the proof now seemed to be in the pudding. Another crewmember might have felt obligated to report the incident to Medical. Archana, like a few others she knew, felt no such inclination. It was over and done with, and she was ready to move away from the incident and forget about it like the bad dream it was.

Taking a quick look at her reflection in the bathroom mirror, Archana nodded once to herself, satisfied with her appearance. There was an adventure waiting to be had, and the Security Officer wasn’t going to miss a moment of it. Dutifully telling the computer to dim the lights in her absence, she hurried out of her quarters and into the corridor, ready to meet the dangers of the Taevon Expanse with the rest of her shipmates.

OFF

_________________
Lieutenant Archana Sen
Chief Security/Tactical Officer
USS Sentinel NCC-83680


Fri Mar 22, 2013 12:56 pm
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Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2013 3:10 pm
Posts: 3
Post Re: Mission 1: "Stratagem"
ON:
<<Lounge, Day 1, 1305>>

Miracle hated to be the newcomer to a ship of tightly knit crew. Even though she was shown respect and courtesies as she moved about the ship doing her job, she could still see the uncertainty in their eyes, stance and the way an area would fall quiet when she entered.

Miracle took a break from the upkeep of her new experimental shuttle and scampered off to the lounge for a bite to eat and relax. Maybe even take some time in the holo-deck, but the lounge came first as she was a bit hungry at the moment.

After working for a few more hours, Awen had decided to get something to eat. The lounge on the Sentinel class vessel wasn't as large as the lounges she was used to, but it served its purpose. The main lunch crowd were finishing up and leaving when she initially entered, but by the time she sat down, only a few crew remained.

As usual, the Bajoran sat with her back to a wall - a habit she had never been able to break from her childhood, not that she wanted to. Awen took her first spoonful of ratamba stew as she saw the doors to the lounge swish open, allowing a Mousian to enter. A little confused, as she didn't recall a Mousian crewmember being on the ship's roster, she watched her silently.

Miracle scampered in, missing the lunch crowd, pausing long enough to glance about the room and taking in those that remained as she moved to the bar. She gave her order for her usual meal of fish with cheese sandwich, salad and orange juice slushie.

Taking note of the Bajoran woman watching her with more than casual interest, she nodded to the lady as she moved to a seat near the viewport. She wore an all black ensemble, (cargo pants, sandals, form fitting tanktop with a bright yellow smiley face), wrist computer on her left wrist. Flopping down in her seat with the view on one side, the room on the other she waited for her meal to arrive.

Partly Awen wished nothing more than to simply enjoy her meal in peace and then go back to her duties. However, between being the Sentinel's Executive Officer and her training in security, she felt compelled to approach the unfamiliar apparent crewmember. Her mind made up, she picked up her tray and walked a few tables away to where the young mouse woman sat. "Do you mind if I sit with you?"

Miracle nodded as she waved a paw-like hand to indicate she could as her food arrived. "Squeee.." she said softly in a pleasant tone, leaning forward to stand, but instead took her food from the bartender. "Iz mean hi, Lieutenant Commander. Iz hope yooz don't mind mez remaining seated. Coming up for air and food." She fidgeted a bit displaying her rank pips below her combat flight wings on her left breast. "Iz Miracle, Shuttle pilot."

The Bajoran sat her tray on the table and pulled out the chair to sit. The Mousian's speech pattern was a little unusual, but as long as she concentrated, she understood what Miracle was saying. Certainly it was easier than an entirely different language without a universal translator. "That's perfectly fine. I'm Lieutenant Commander Fala, Executive Officer and Chief Science Officer for the Sentinel." Hesitating slightly, she added, "I don't believe I remember seeing your name on the crew roster...did you join us right before we left the starbase?"

Miracle nodded, "Iz slipped aboard while the ship was leaving its berthing. Complete with a newest shuttle from Fleet to run field test on and whot better place than the Taevon Expanse to run them tests in." Giving a cheeky smile. "Type 18. Iz would give yooz a tour of the buggy, but..." shrugs, "...Compartmentalization..."

Well, that explained why Awen didn't know about Miracle, at least. Probably the transfer orders were waiting for her, she just hadn't had time to look what with all the...excitement. "The Taevon Expanse is a rather dangerous place for some tests," she mused. "And while a tour might be interesting, I'm afraid I wouldn't have time now anyway...I've been working on finding a course through the Expanse." The Bajoran took another spoonful of stew before asking, "Since I've not seen your service record yet, where were you stationed previously?"

"Horizon Fleet Shuttle Service." Miracle knew being given her own Shuttle, newest out of R&D, to test under field conditions that the Fleet had great trust in her capabilities and someone in another department of Fleet Headquarters pulled some serious strings to get her out here amongst the stars. "Maybe that why Iz am here. Iz am the bestest at whot Iz do. I was applying to become a Test Pilot to break ships that's been majorly overhauled, newest ships of the line from shuttle to the bigger main ships." She nibbled on her food between answers. "Before theyz are put in service."

Awen was not entirely sure how to take Miracle's claims. While it was theoretically possible, she wasn't entirely convinced at this point that the Mousian was 'the best' at what she did. It was one thing to say it and another to show it. Time would tell, undoubtedly. After taking a sip of her kava juice, she asked, "How long were you with the shuttle service? Have you had the chance to fly a Sentinel class vessel before? Or the Incursion class runabout?"

"Give mez time and Iz will," Miracle smiled with confidence hard won. Keeping her voice soft and pleasant, yet a bit more professional. "Iz was introduced into Fleet when Iz came aboard the Caliburn, then got transferred to the Valorous, for one mission." Looking thoughtful as she spoke, food momentarily forgotten. "Iz with Fleet shuttles while Iz went to the Academy, specializing Helm, Navigation, Engineering. Iz can pick up the rest of the courses by correspondent. From the looks of this ship, Itz a Intrepid Varient Class. Instead of the feminine curves, Sentinel has the masculine angles for better defense and aerodynamics for maneuvering." Letting Awen know she was on top of things, not some wet behind the ears newbie, but good crew-species who liked to be on top of things to meld gracefully into a well knit crew.

Nodding at Miracle's explanation, the Bajoran took another sip of her juice. "Those are good specializations to have; engineering can certainly be beneficial if you're working shuttles and runabouts, for instance. And I have heard of the Caliburn and Valorous, though I've not served on them." She wasn't entirely sure what to make of the Mousian, but presumably she'd get to know her better - the Sentinel wasn't exactly the largest ship out there. "I imagine you'll have a chance to fly the Sentinel at some point while aboard. And of course, we'll soon be into the heart of the Expanse..."

Miracle smiled as her tail weaved slow curves behind her, taking in the view of the Expanse, taking a bite of food and a sip of her drink, giving herself time to think a bit before speaking. "Iz would like the chance at the helm of this ship. But Iz understand Shuttle pilots are needed as well. That will be up to the Chief of Flight, whether Iz get to fly this ship." Looking wistfully at Awen, pulling herself back to pay attention to the Commander.

Finishing off her drink, the Bajoran offered the young pilot a half smile. She still wasn't entirely sure about Miracle, but only time and experience with her would assuage any remaining concerns. "Pilots in any form are certainly needed. I imagine that you'll get a chance to fly the Sentinel at some point...we do have a fairly small crew, after all. Is there anything you need, or anything I can do for you?"

"Not at the moment, Commander Fala," Miracle smiled warmly at the Bajoran lady, then fidgeted a bit, "Iz have mez den, work assignment and new people to meet. Whot more could a sentient species want?" Leaning back in her seat to relax as she watched the Bajoran before her. "If anything does come up that mez immediate chain o command can't handle, I'm sure yooz will be next in line before the Captain," pausing briefly. "A chance at the helm of this ship? Even if it'z for a short time."

Awen nodded at Miracle. Part of her was relieved that the Mousian didn't need anything, but since she was Executive Officer as well, it was, in her opinion, her duty to ask. "Yes, I would be next in line in the chain of command after your department head, but before the Commanding Officer. I imagine your time will come," the Bajoran replied as she stood. "If you'll excuse me, I need to return to my work. As I already said, let me know if you do need anything. Welcome aboard."

Miracle stood out of respect and also she was about to head back to the shuttle bay, to resume her shuttle bay duties there. "Squeakies, Mezlady Lieutenant Commander." softly with a slight curtsy and head bob. She watched the Bajoran lady leave as she gathered up the dishes into one spot to make it easier on the Lounge personal.

OFF: JP by

Lt. Commander Fala Awen
Executive Officer
USS Sentinel

and

_________________
Lt JG Miracle
Chief Flight Control Officer
USS Sentinel


Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:54 am
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Commanding Officer
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Joined: Sat Jul 10, 2010 5:48 pm
Posts: 35
Post Re: Mission 1: "Stratagem"
ON

<USS Sentinel, Bridge, MD01 1617hrs>

Despite every station being staffed and a few crewmen lingering at the rear, the bridge of the USS Sentinel was starkly silent. Every set of eyes in the room was locked on the forward view screen, staring in awe at the spectacle that was displayed there. Ominous burgundy gas clouds that towered a quarter light year high blotted out the stars that the Expanse contained, on their roiling surface arcs of super charged plasma lightning discharged and illuminated the space behind the gaseous facade. The gas itself seemed to churn and spiral as a result of some unknown force acting on it from deeper within, this was the true face of the Taevon Expanse, a face that few individuals had witnessed and lived to tell about.

Peter had spent the last several hours going over every scrap of information about the Taevon Expanse that he'd been able to get his hands on in hopes that it might give them some idea of what they would could expect to face. It was one thing to study what little they knew about the Expanse, but seeing the tumultuous image on the viewscreen made Peter realize that no amount of research could have ever prepared them for this. The three-dimensional map he and Lieutenant Commander Fala had come up with did little justice when compared to the very real phenomena now before them.

"We're going..." Ensign Kasai(NPC) uttered with reflexive alarm breaking the silence. The disquiet in his voice was obvious to all who could hear him, "...in there?"

"That's right," Erik replied with only a little less uneasiness. "Take us out of warp one hundred thousand kilometers from the barrier and proceed at one quarter impulse." Erik paused and took his eyes away from the screen long enough to observe his first officer looking back at him. "Commander, have your scans revealed a corridor yet? We can't proceed without one..."

After taking in the Expanse, the Bajoran turned towards Erik to reply, "Yes, sir. My team and I have worked out one of the corridors that should take us where we need to go. We will, however, have to continuously monitor it - the corridors aren't always stable and we may need to make adjustments." Tapping a few commands into her console, she swiped her finger across and reported, "Coordinates and an overall course have been sent to Flight Control based on our calculations."

"Course confirmed sir," Ensign Kasai reported with a more controlled tone before slipping into a hushed voice. "I hope they have their math right..."

Erik nodded to Awen before returning his attention forward, "Very well Ensign, set course and take us in." Erik was as nervous about the Sentinel's situation as the rest of the officers around him but he also relished the opportunity to get a little exploratory work in while he could. Its wasn't often that patrol vessels had such chances.

Christopher (PNPC) sat quietly at his station, his frown fixed firmly in place. There was no doubt that the Expanse was something remarkable to see, but it didn’t make it any less dangerous or unpredictable. Choosing to largely ignore the scenery, he kept focus on his console, monitoring the ship and its systems with an eagle eye.

Peter slowly turned his attention back to what was on his own workstation. A miniature version of their composite map took up one corner of the display while a steady stream of information scrolled almost continuously below it. Once they entered the more densely packed regions of the Expanse, it would be much more difficult to maintain communication with Deep Space Three which is why Peter had made certain they'd downloaded as much information as possible from the station's computers. He tapped a quick series of commands into the console which caused the composite map to expand and focus more closely on their current position while still leaving room to monitor their data uplink. Already, Peter could see the intermittent disruptions in data reception were becoming more frequent. It wouldn't be long now...

As the Sentinel approached the barrier clouds of the inner Expanse the violence on their churning facades became more distinct and the corridors which had been dark tendrils behind a smoky screen became clearly visible as areas of gas-less space. The corridors were not stationary however and their entrances shifted slowly and forced Ensign Kasai to constantly change his vector. "We're approaching the entrance of Corridor One now but I'm having trouble keeping track of it sir."

Watching silently, Awen took in the Expanse from the Main Viewer. There was a beauty to it, surely, but she knew it was dangerous nonetheless. Her gaze shifted between Erik and the Flight Control Officer. She hoped that he was up to the task of navigating the ship through... A slight smirk crossed her face - perhaps this should be a test for all Flight Control cadets.

Erik leaned forward in his seat with his hands clasped before him, his eyes having grown hard and discerning of his flight control officer. "Ease off the impulse drive and take us in, thrusters only."

Fredrick's eyes jetted back and forth between the view screen and his console anxiously. He clinched his jaw and held it as they passed through the threshold; a nervous tick he has had most of his life. He knew that if they made it out his jaw would ache for days, making him grumpier then usual. He tapped away at his desk, reviewing each primary system in cycles. An event similar to what had occurred a handful of hours ago could mean the end of their expedition.

The Sentinel entered Corridor One smoothly but even at its reduced velocity Ensign Kasai was still having trouble maintaining the ship's course. The walls of the corridor expanded and contracted from several kilometers at their maximum to only a few ship's length at their minimum and if that wasn't disorienting enough the course of the tunnel itself seemed to shift just as frequently. Despite this the Ensign managed to hold it together, a film of sweat forming on his brow and hands from the stress but he pressed on. "I think we're okay..."

Archana smiled to herself, glad to see that the Ensign was holding up well enough under the pressure. Her smile didn’t last long, though, and quickly faded as the wall of the corridor seemed to suddenly loom far closer than it should. “Ensign, the wall!” she called out to Kasai, unconsciously gripping her console. “You haven’t calculated for the next bend!”

Dean realized his error a millisecond before the Tactical officer's words echoed through the silent bridge but his realization came too late. Had the tunnel been a static environment the helmsman may have been able to veer off from the collision but as his poor luck would have it, the wall was undulating inward as the ship approached. "Hold on!" the young man cautioned as he put the Sentinel into an arc away from the corridor wall and a moment later the ship's starboard nacelle sank into the dense gas cloud that made up the wall.

The next few moments seemed to pass slowly as tense situations do, a low rumbling in the hull quickly intensified to a violent shaking before the ship lurched to port throwing several officers around the bridge off balance. Panels covering EPS relays around the bridge quickly began to glow from the heat beneath while others buckled from the pressure popping off allowing showers of shimmering yellow sparks to dance across the bridge floor.

Ensign Kasai was thrown from his seat as he tried to right the ship and as he hit the deck his head impacted with the hard surface rendering him motionless. Erik gripped his armrests tightly through the worst of the impact but he watched helplessly as Ensign Kasai was thrown from his seat.

The entire scene seemed to Peter as if it were playing out in incredibly slow motion. His attention had turned from his own visual display to the forward viewscreen as the ship drew closer and closer to the corridor wall and, despite having anticipated their contact with the transient boundary only moments before impact, Peter was nearly thrown from his seat by the sudden lurch. He did his best to wedge himself as firmly as possible against his own workstation in an effort to ride out the turbulance. The sound of overloading EPS relays caused him to duck instinctively as alarms began sounding all around the room. Peter saw Ensign Kasai being thrown from his seat out of the corner of his eye. Without even realizing it, the Chief Strategic Operations Officer rose from his chair and immediately began making his way toward the abandoned flight control station.

Fredrick righted himself at his console from the kneeling position he took as the impact knocked him from his chair and shook off daze from hitting his head on the back of the seat on the way down. He was greeted with a console full of alarms and a stream of data as the system began its automated diagnostics from the impact. He his fingers instinctively began pulling up reports of the primary and secondary systems which were still coming in and queued up the console to load the non-critical systems in the background.

Picking herself off the ground, Archana swiftly regained feet and her position at her station. One quick glance around the Bridge showed her that, aside from poor Ensign Kasai, everyone appeared to be well enough. Allowing herself a moment of relief for that, she placed her hands on either side of her console, her feet braced apart. She wasn’t about to lose her balance again, no matter what the ship encountered next.

Erik rose from his seat in reaction to the quickly evolving events, "Peter, take the Helm..." Yet as the words left his lips Erik realized that the Strat Ops officer was already out of his own seat and halfway to the helm. Commander Fala had already left her seat as well and was on her way to the fallen Ensign.

It took only a few seconds for Peter to cross the short distance between his workstation and the Sentinel's helm. The ship continued to shudder as Peter slid into the empty seat which told him some part of the vessel was still in contact with the corridor wall. He glanced over the readouts before him in an attempt to quickly familiarize himself with the layout. It had been awhile since he'd last piloted a starship of any size, but there was no mistaking the growing number of warnings which continued to appear across the console. Now was not the time to hesitate...

After partly regaining her balance, the Bajoran moved quickly out of her seat and knelt down next to Dean. Her fingertips moved to his neck in an all too familiar gesture from her time in the Resistance. Awen turned back to Erik, "He has a pulse." Wasting no time, she tapped her comm badge, "Fala to Sickbay. Ensign Kasai has been injured and needs medical attention."

<Sickbay>

As Darija (PNPC) heard the Executive Officer's communication, she glanced around sickbay. They were ready...so long as they didn't get inundated with patients. She tapped her commbadge, "NaVer to Fala, acknowledged, I'm on my way."

Damien (NPC) looked to the doctor, "Is there anything you want us to do, Doctor?"

"Just be prepared in case there are more injuries. I'll see to Ensign Kasai and will keep you informed....Damien, you're in charge until I return," the Trill said as she grabbed her kit and headed for the door.

<Bridge>

Another violent tremor rumbled through the Sentinel, forcing Peter to grip the edges of the helm to keep himself from meeting the same fate as Ensign Kasai. Peter could see from what he was reading on the display in front of him that their forward momentum was continuing to plummet. It was as if the corridor wall was creating drag on the ship itself. Impulse engines were out of the question given the current size and unpredictability of the corridor which mean relying entirely on the already overtaxed maneuvering thrusters.

This could get worse before it gets better, Peter thought to himself as he pushed the maneuvering thrusters even further past the recommended tolerance levels. An warning alarm cried out in protest and was quickly silenced. The added thrust seemed to be having little effect at first, but as seconds ticked by, the image on the forward viewscreen began slowly shifting away from the undulating gasses toward the open center of the corridor. Peter's attention remained fixed on his navigational instruments rather than the visual reference. The last thing he needed was for them to clear the corridor wall only to go careening into the opposite side because he wasn't keeping a close enough eye on the thruster controls.

A scant twenty seconds after the ship had impacted with the corridor wall the scene began to calm a little and as it did Erik took stock of the situation. Despite the violent episode the damage around the bridge wasn't as bad as the Captain thought it would be, some singe marks on the carpet and a few blown out panels seemed to be the extent of it. But he knew that the rest of the ship could be in far worse shape, "Damage report," he ordered as he waited next to Awen for the Medical team to arrive.

"Primary and Secondary Systems are online, no damage. The structural integrity field is down to 82% but is steadily returning to full strength. We have minor structure damage on the starboard nacelle but it should hold." Fredrick watched as more of the cautionary lights blinked out and returned to a ready status. "I have dispatched repair teams to a few minor incidents on the starboard side." Fredrick took a deep breath reveling in the adrenaline. "I'd say we got off pretty lucky Captain."

“Systems are indeed functioning,” Christopher confirmed, echoing the Chief Engineer’s report. “We experienced a twenty percent power loss on Decks 2 and 3, but I’ve rerouted power from non-essential systems to compensate,” he added, one hand still gripping his Ops console even though it seemed the danger had passed. Judging by the luck they'd been having so far, it was only a matter of time before their next near disaster, or so Christopher believed.

The turbolift doors swished open and Darija rushed through, pausing as she walked onto the bridge. Her sky blue eyes surveyed the scene, stopping at the injured crewmember. She glanced over at Erik, giving him a nod before moving to Dean and kneeling next to him. Out of her kit, she pulled out her medical tricorder and began scanning him for injuries.

Awen frowned upon hearing the damage report, though she did nod to Darija as the Trill entered the bridge. She'd seen people survive worse, but still. The Bajoran wasn't sure if the man's nerves had gotten to him, resulting in him not paying attention or if he simply wasn't the right fit for this particular journey. Admittedly, it was not an easy one and there was no guarantee her calculations were exactly accurate due to the shifting nature of the corridor. She could only hope that Peter would do better and they made it through in one piece.

Erik nodded back to the Trill as she entered the Bridge and began tending to the fallen Ensign, he then glanced toward the helm where Peter was doing his best to keep the ship 'in the box'. "Find a good spot and bring us to a stop Armstrong," the Commander said before turning his attention back toward Darija. "What is his condition Lieutenant? Is he alright?"

Hearing her medical tricorder beep, the Trill read the scan results before turning back to the Captain, "He'll be alright, sir. He's suffered a serious concussion, but it's nothing we can't handle. I'm going to stabilize him and transport him to sickbay."

Erik nodded to the medical officer before he turned, placed a hand on Awen's shoulder and nodded toward the center of the bridge, equidistant from the rest of the officers present. As the two command officers came to a stop there Erik crossed his arms and let his gaze settle on the viewscreen. "We aren't going to complete our mission at this speed," Erik said in a hushed voice so that only his first officer could hear. "We need to find a way to travel at impulse safely, recommendations?"

Awen frowned as she considered his question. Quickly she considered everything she'd looked into since they had received this mission before responding, "The Science department looked into the various possibilities for...hours. What we're doing now is the safest way we could determine to get the ship through in one piece. The only other suggestion I might have is to send the runabout out ahead of us to scout; since it's smaller, they'll have more leeway and we can use their sensors to help us make course adjustments."

Erik rubbed his stubble covered chin in brief contemplation before returning his gaze to his first officer, "a runabout would work." Erik agreed but another idea formed in his mind as he finished his statement. "What about our Mousian Lieutenant? That shuttle she brought aboard was specially outfitted for work in dense energy fields..."

"Well, sir," the Bajoran began, thinking back to the conversation she'd had with the mouse woman earlier before responding further, "Ms. Miracle certainly seems confident in her abilities. Having not witnessed her in action before and not knowing the full capabilities of her shuttle, I can't say I'm entirely comfortable with the idea. Especially in a case like this, where the ship would be relying on both to help us navigate. If you want her to give it a try, I suppose we could always send out the regular runabout if need be."

Peter could hear bits and pieces of what the captain and first officer were talking about only a short distance behind him. Admittedly, Peter did not know much about the lieutenant in question nor was he intimately familiar with the shuttle to which the captain was referring, considering neither were directly affiliated with his role as Chief Strategic Operations Officer. He had taken a little time to look over the ship's embarked craft manifest after coming aboard just for personal reference. Based on what he'd seen and heard since then, he could only assume the shuttle in question was an uprated version of the Type 18 shuttlepod typically assigned to Sentinel-class starships.

"Having someone mapping out the corridor ahead of us would help make navigating the corridor easier," Peter offered from his position at the helm, "A shuttlepod wouldn't have as much difficulty maneuvering either."

"Precisely," Erik said with a nod. "I want to see what she can do, if she's as good as her profile says she is." Erik turned toward the viewscreen to find that the ship had come to a complete stop. "Mr. Armstrong, hold us where we are and monitor for anything unusual."

"Aye sir," Peter acknowledged. Things had settled down to the point where bringing the ship to a complete stop was simply a matter of reducing their forward momentum to zero. Peter made a few adjustments to their heading so as to keep enough distance between them and the constantly shifting corridor boundaries before easing back on the thrusters and bringing the Sentinel to a complete stop. "Reading full stop," he reported, "...at least in the relative sense."

"Mr. Fielding," Erik said as he turned toward the turbolift doors. "How do you feel about taking a little shuttle ride?"

Truthfully, Christopher had no interest in taking a ride anywhere just at the moment. But since that was hardly the sort of thing to admit to his commanding officer, he simply acknowledged the request with an, “Aye, sir,” and prepared to follow the Commander into the turbolift. A new warning from his console held him back, however. “Sir, I’m getting new damage reports from Engineering.” Looking over the strange readouts, he quickly added, “I don’t know if this can wait, Commander.”

Fredrick has a look of concern after getting off the com with Lieutenant Zoraan at the engineering station. The readouts were all over the place, he needed to get down there. He had just started to make his way toward the turbo lift as Lieutenant Fielding made mention of the issues in Engineering.

"Lieutenant Fielding is correct Captain, there may be a life support failure in Main Engineering among other problems. Lieutenant Zoraan has requested assistance. If possible I would like to take Lieutenant Fielding with me. We cannot loose Main Engineering trapped in the expanse like this.

Erik surveyed both men as they entered the turbolift with him before nodding his consent, “Very well gentlemen.” After relaying their different destinations to the computer the turbolift began to descend and Erik continued, “I will take Ensign Makar instead, have him meet me in the shuttle bay as soon as possible Mr. Fielding.”

“Yes, Commander,” Christopher replied. Glancing at Vetrov beside him, he continued, “With any luck, we’ll have things patched up in Engineering in a trice.” Seeing as this was only their first taste of what the Expanse could really do, he was hoping against hope that they’d at least have the majority of the ship’s systems set to rights before venturing any further inside.

"Let us hope so," Erik said with a forced smile he exited the Turbo Lift and began toward the shuttle bay. The real luck would come into play when the Mousian shuttle pilot found herself with the weight of the crews' lives on her shoulders the Commander figured.

OFF

A Joint Post written by:

Lieutenant Commander Fala Awen
Executive Officer


and

Lieutenant JG Darija NaVer
Acting CMO
(played by Fala Awen)

and

Ensign Dean Kasai
Acting CFCO
(played by Erik Tsereteli)

and

Lieutenant Commander Peter Armstrong
Chief of Strategic Operations

and

Lieutenant Archana Sen
Chief Security/Tactical Officer

and

Lieutenant Frederick Vetrov
Chief Engineer

and

Lieutenant JG Christopher Fielding
Acting Chief Operations
(played by Archana Sen)

and

_________________
Commodore Erik Tsereteli
Commanding Officer
USS-Sentinel NCC-83680


Thu Apr 18, 2013 8:37 pm
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Post Re: Mission 1: "Stratagem"
ON

<USS Sentinel, Main Shuttle Bay, MD01 1640 Hours>

Erik had wasted little time making his way to the Sentinel's shuttle bay after the ship had been secured at a stop within the undulating corridor of the expanse. It had become apparent that the ship would have to travel at unacceptably slow speeds on its own but the Commander had another idea. And idea that would require a scout ship and a crafty pilot undaunted by the challenges that the idea posed, a single individual had come to mind.

"Lieutenant," Erik said as he approached the open rear of the experimental shuttle he had been told about. "Lieutenant Miracle?"

Miracle looked at the human male over quickly. Seeing the Captain's set of pips, She stood up to show respect for him. "Aye aye Mez Lord Captain," Giving him a quick bow of respect. "Whot brings yooz to mez humble place aboard this fine ship community of ourz?" Waving a paw hand to the nearest seat.

She wearing her usual attire of black cargo pants, sandels and her trademark black formfitting tanktop with a bright yellow smiley face on front and on back, a red and white bull's eye.

Consoles and systems chirpped and beep. Screen showed the status of a fully powered up Volga Class shuttle.

Erik couldn't help but to stop and glance about in awe at the scene, he had never met a Mousian in person and wondered if Lieutenant JG Miracle was typical of her race or an outlier. After a moment taken to survey the young officer he stepped into the shuttle and stood at ease, "I prefer to stand actually but thank you Lieutenant. I understand that you came aboard the evening before our departure, its unfortunate that we haven't had a chance to meet. It has also come to my attention that you are a skilled pilot, a pilot assigned well beneath her station..."

Miracle looked thoughtful and then nodded with a soft "squeak," pausing briefly, "Iz just go where fleet sends mez. They needed this Volga tested out and they heard that yooz was heading in this direction. Iz kept bugging Fleet to put mez be a test pilot. SO to get rid of mez, they gave me this ship and sent mez here. Hopefully to get it tested out." Looking at him abit closer. "Theyz didn't tell yooz about mez, when they summoned yooz to the brief?"

"I'm sure a notice came through my office at some point," Erik replied honestly. "But as you may have noticed things have been a little hectic over the past twenty four hours."

Miracle scampered over to a cabinet and opened it up to grab a PADD. "This is mez orders, which the shuttle chief should've informed the chain o command," Tossing him the padd with orders on it. Closing the cabinet door and scampering back to the helms as the soft chime sounded.

Erik glanced at the PADD and confirmed that the Mousian had indeed be granted stewardship of the shuttle and ordered to deliver it to the Sentinel where it would be field tested at the Captains discretion. Erik had never been a big ship buff but he was savvy enough to recognize an impressive list of capabilities when he saw them and the prototype he stood in fit that bill. "Well Lieutenant, you will be happy to know that we're going to need to put your shuttle to the test sooner than later... Within the next hour in fact."

Miracle came to full alert. "Squeeee?" head tilting to one side with interest. "How may Iz be of service?" Her familiarization of the shuttle Type-18 Volga Class shuttle, became secondary as a mission for her was on the horizon.

"We've crossed the inner barrier of the Taevon expanse," Erik explained as he continued to look about the shuttle's interior. "You may have noticed the turbulence a short time ago, the result of a slight incident on the Bridge. One thing that's become obvious is that the Sentinel is ill equipped to make the trip through this region of space in any reasonable length of time and so we've come up with a plan that may allow us to travel a little faster. That is where you come in."

"Squeeee" Miracle's tone was pleasant, yet held a trace of excitement, eyes sparkled in delight. "Iz noticed. An EMP flicker, but everything well protected once the anti-EMP kick in and have the data stored for Science to study." Pstted the console nearby affectionately.

"You and Ensign Makar, one of our better Operations Officers, will take the shuttle and run point for us," Erik revealed. "That is to say that you will be scouting ahead of the Sentinel a few thousand kilometers to map a path for us as we travel. With any luck this will prevent us from having any more... Incidents, on the Bridge. How soon can you be ready?"

"By the time the Ensign arrives, Iz will be ready to depart, sir!" Miracle was ready to head out into the unknown. "Iz will tap into the Sentinel's data banks for the destination," swiveling around in her comfortable seat to face the console and began uploading the mission's profile and destination into the onboard computer banks. "Anything else?" Glancing his way as she worked. "Make sure whomever yooz send wears an evac suit."

"Very good," Erik replied with a nod and a curious regard for the Mousian. Erik then turned and made for the open hatch before turning slightly, "That is all, the Ensign should be along shortly."

Even with the shuttle's door still open, Miracle moved the Volga to the launch ready pad, moving at a slow pace so anyone getting off or on wouldn't get injured, within the confines of the shuttle bay. Then moved to the cabinet and removed her evac suit. Stripping down to one piece bodysuit (similiar to a swimsuit), began to put on her evac suit.

Erik departed the shuttle and watched for a moment as the pilot moved the ship into position noting the grace with which Miracle piloted the craft. He then made for the room's exit and started for the bridge.

=====

A Joint Post by:

Lieutenant JG Miracle
Chief Flight Control Officer

and

_________________
Commodore Erik Tsereteli
Commanding Officer
USS-Sentinel NCC-83680


Thu Apr 18, 2013 8:44 pm
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Post Re: Mission 1: "Stratagem"
<USS Sentinel, Main Engineering, MD 01 1635 Hours>

Lucretia Zoraan huffed as she wiped sweat from her brow and paused for a quick breather. The previous ten minutes had consisted of one system failure after another and despite the Engineering department's best efforts matters weren't getting any better. While most of the malfunctions seemed minor on the surface a few had turned into a downright nuisance, namely the failure of the Environmental Control System on the Engineering level. The unregulated air was steadily getting hotter and without a solution the deck would be come uninhabitable within a quarter hour.

It was with no small amount of relief that the El Aurian Engineer trotted toward the main entrance as the doors opened and her superiors strode out, "we've got problems down here sir... "

Lieutenant Vetrov stepped off the turbo lift first, he stepped through the wall of heat into the Engineering bay. The room looked much worse then the initial damage reports had suggested. A hanging conduit, several broken consoles, turned over chairs, a few flickering lights and one audible system warning regarding the depleting oxygen supply. Some of the walls had been opened up where engineers had already begun work repairing the local systems.

"I'm impressed Lieutenant", he tells Lucretia. "Damage reports would suggest we are much better off then we look down here." He moves over to the cracked console that she has been working on that has the life support system systems laid out on it, red lines flashing throughout the digital room. Fredrick looks up as he listens to the next computer announcement...

<< Nine Minutes Until Oxygen Levels Reach Critical Levels >>

"Well that makes one of us," Lucretia scoffed as she threw her arms up in frustration. "Nothing these new damage control sensors have been reporting has been accurate. I'm not impressed at all..."

Having entered Engineering fast on Vetrov’s heels, Christopher (PNPC) frowned at Lucretia’s report. “I, for one, am not surprised in the least. We never had a proper shakedown, and the station crewmembers performing the bulk of the refits were mediocrely competent at best.” Heaving a put-upon sigh, Christopher literally and figuratively rolled up his sleeves, anticipating the work ahead of them.

After glancing over to the oxygen masks to make sure they were all still there and undamaged, Fredrick looks back to the console and taps in a few commands and the image zooms out and rotates to see the entire deck. "It looks like we have also lost life support in my office, two engineering labs and several storage bays. Looks like we had a cascading sensor failure across the deck." The man stands back up and takes a moment to think.

"If we lock the doors to engineering bays 3 and 4 open to main engineering we should be able to program this room to use the sensor readings from the bays. We wont be comfortable but it will keep us alive until we can fix the deck sensor grid failure." He looks to Fielding and Zoraan for consensus.

"It would certainly help us get a handle on what’s really going on," Lucretia replied with a nod as she took up her engineering kit and began making her way toward Bay 3. "Lets just get this over with quickly, I don't know how much more of the heat I can take..."

“My console on the bridge didn't report any of these malfunctions,” Christopher growled as he visually assessed the damage, obviously as frustrated with the situation as the rest of them. “And it’s not the heat you should worry about, but our rapidly depleting oxygen levels,” he added, almost as an afterthought. “I for one don’t want to suffocate in Engineering, of all places.”

Fredrick smirked at the Assistant Chief of Operations comment, there is no other place he would rather be. "Damage Control Team two." Fredrick calls after touching his communication badge. "I need you to stop in Storage Bays 7 through 10 and make sure no one is unconscious there while making your rounds, life support may not be working there."

<< Eight Minutes Until Oxygen Levels Reach Critical Levels >>

Lucretia grunted to herself as she unzipped her uniform's tunic and rolled the upper part of the jumpsuit down to her waist. The air was hot on her skin but she felt a little better than before, well enough to do what needed done. With that she unfastened and removed the control panel to the side of Bay 3's door and began rearranging the chips inside. A minute later the doors swished open and remained open as she backed away to observe her handy work.

Fredrick pulled up some system configurations of the life support system he was just looking at and began tapping away. After several overrides and some warnings he was allowed program the sensors in Bays 3 and 4 to control life support in all of engineering just shortly after the doors to bay 3 slid and locked open. Fredrick pulled up the manual controls for Main Engineering and was setting it to circulate air to force it into the bays when he heard the tell-tail whine of a console about to blow.

He quickly stepped to the side looked away and covered his face instinctively. He held the position for a few moments after he heard a small pop but the shower of sparks never came only the smell of a fused circuit. He looked up and saw the screen had gone black. He was almost disappointed. He was however frustrated that he would have to start over with the air circulators. He moved a crewman from the next station and started again. It was going to be closer then he wanted...

<< Six Minutes Until Oxygen Levels Reach Critical Levels >>

Fredrick winced as he heard the next announcement. He looked up from his console and wiped a bead of sweat from his brow that was forming from the hot and stuffy air. "Unless you are physically holding this ship together down here you need to begin to evacuate main engineering immediately!" he shouted to the room. He finished the commands to begin the air circulation in the room and headed to the oxygen masks. He grabbed several. He put one on his waist, handed another to Lieutenant Fielding. With the last mask he made his way over to the railing to look down where his assistant chief was working and with a nod he tossed the apparatus down to her and went back to his console to check the progress.

With oxygen mask in hand, Christopher made his way to a console of his own, hopeful that he might have some luck setting things to right before he was forced to put on the oxygen mask. It was, as anyone would have rightly suspected, a right mess. As if the failing life support in Engineering wasn't enough, it seemed that the majority of the new systems were failing as well. And while he didn't mind the occasional challenge, for his first week on a new job, this was frankly ridiculous. “Why are you being so damned difficult,” he muttered to the computer as he doggedly continued to enter new commands, ignoring the growing perspiration at his neck and brow.

<< Critical Environment Levels Have Been Reached >>

Fredrick finished his work and the air circulators began pushing air to the engineering bay as he heard the last announcement and his heart sunk to his stomach. Something else was wrong, he knew he had not lost five minutes of time finishing his program.

"Masks On!" the Chief shouted to the room.

He flipped his console to look at the sensor readings in engineering and was seeing a sharp spike in O3. He pulled his oxygen mask over his head and looked around. A power conduit in the room must have started arching in the last few minutes and was burning up with little oxygen they had left, creating poison.

The device took him several consoles down where Fredrick carefully pulled the front panel off of the device and took a look inside. He could see the fused conduit coming into bottom of the console that was still smoking and popping as the power arched. Fredrick dabbed his brow with a cloth, grounded himself on the console and held his breath as he reached in to pull the power feed from the console. For the second time today, he found himself lucky with only a minor feedback shock as he pulled the power feed.

The officers continue to work for several more minutes clearing the air and securing main engineering before the masks come off and the engineering crew is called back in to begin getting things back in working condition. He begins detailing a list of malfunctioning ship components as Lucretia organizes the repair details. The Captain would not be happy with the condition of the ship when he reviewed the growing list. The list included a few other issues unrelated to the damage sustained when the ship hit the corridor wall. Readouts that showed the expanse was causing the cloaking device to malfunction making it useless.

He sends the report to the Captain and lets him know a detailed report is available for his review when... he has the time.

OFF: JP brought to you by:

Lieutenant JG Christopher Fielding
Acting Chief Operations
(played by Archana Sen)

and

Lieutenant (JG) Lucretia Zoraan
Asst. Chief of Engineering
(Played by Commander Erik Tsereteli)

and

_________________
Lieutenant Fredrick M Vetrov
Chief Engineering Officer
USS Sentinel NCC-83680


Mon Apr 22, 2013 10:10 am
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Post Re: Mission 1: "Stratagem"
<USS Sentinel, Main Shuttle Bay, 1700 Hours>

Much to his dismay Ensign Lionel Makar(NPC) had received orders to pack up his gear and rendezvous with a shuttle a little over ten minutes prior. Now, outside the shuttlebay he loathed his decision to take the assignment aboard the Sentinel even more than he had before. "Why me?" He muttered to himself as he strode through the shuttle bay doors. A second later his jaw went slacked and he dropped his operations case entirely, "what in the..." A shuttle hovered in front of him with it's rear hatch open and just a foot or so above the deck a strange looking furred female stood with an expectant expression.

Miracle looked at the surprised Ensign, "Squeaaah... Mousian ... wez dont have all day." Turning her back to the Ensign and settling in her seat. "Go ahead and take yooz position at this console," pointing it out which seat to take. Sometimes she hated to be the odd species amongs the more Dominant ones.

"Right, of course," Lionel replied as he stood motionless and watched Miracle. He had met members of a few dozen species but none quite like the Mousian who seated herself at the helm. Ensign Makar shook off the disbelief and forced himself into motion, first retrieving his work kit from the floor then clambering onto the shuttle craft. He paused hesitantly as the hatch began to close behind him and eyed the creature at the helm suspiciously, "you, uh, do know how to fly this thing...Right?"

Miracle rolled her eyes, biting back a smart-alec reply, seeing that he was already nervious about leaving the safety of the bigger ship. "Squeak! Yes!" With confidence as she prepped the Volga. Running through rapid checks and adjusting the harmonics of the shields to match the harmonics of the exspance as she manuevered around the USS Sentinel. "Iz hope yooz have a good background in Science also."

<USS Sentinel, Main Bridge, 1705 Hours>

With the bridge back in proper order and their plan a breath away from being realized Erik exchanged a silent nod with his first officer giving her the go ahead to initiate. What that luck that Lieutenant Fielding had mentioned the scout shuttle would do the trick and the Sentinel would be underway again.

Awen nodded back at Erik, indicating that she understood. The Bajoran tapped her comm badge, "Fala to Miracle and Makar. We're ready to head out. You have permission to disembark and take your position off the bow of the ship. Proceed when ready."

<NCCS Rodent's Revenge, Shuttlebay 1706 hours>

Miracle smiled as she recieved the "Go Ahead" from the bridge. Her paw/hands flew across the helm console with practice ease, easing the shuttle from the shuttle bay out into the Exspance. The view took her breath away as she manuevered the craft to it desired position in front of the Sentinel, few thousand kilometers (can edit if the distance is to far out in front). =/\= "Sentinel, Rodent's Revenge, Wez on station," =/\= Miracle watched the Expance as it moved with unseen forces, attuning herself to the newest enviroment of this phenonemen.

From his place at the tactical console Lionel could see just enough to cause a formidable terror to well up in his stomach, reflexively he clutched at his work case and began to sweat. His breathing quickened and he suddenly began to feel nauseous, "perhaps, um, you can take me back now..? Before we go any farther..."

Miracle whipped her head about to look at him, seeing him on the verge of total collaspe. "Squek!" In a tone reserved for swearing, then in a more softer tone, "Focus on yooz job, Ensign! There's medicine in the cabinet next to yooz." Routing majority of the consoles to her pocket on the bridge she began setting up a link with the Sentinel.

<Bridge>

"Acknowledged, stand by while I configure sensors," Awen replied, quickly setting up the sensor link from her console. Once ready, she sent out the command to establish a link between the two sensor systems. Hearing a beep, she turned towards Erik, "Sensor link established, sir. Our sensor capabilities have increased by thirty-eight percent."

"Now that definitely made a difference," Peter remarked more to himself than to anyone else. He slid a little to the left and started making a few adjustments to the navigational sensors to compensate for the delay in receiving the incoming telemetry. The Sentinel was not a large vessel compared to many others serving in Starfleet, but her systems were among some of the more advanced. The fact they were now having to rely upon a modified shuttlepod to successfully navigate this corridor made Peter wonder if another ship could even have made it this far.

"Shuttlecraft," Erik began after a few moments. "Limit your velocity to one quarter impulse and try to keep your course as far from the corridor walls as you can." He paused and glanced down at his Strategic Operations Officer with a hint of a smirk. "That goes for you too Armstrong, try and follow the shuttles path as tightly as you can."

"I won't be making any promises," Peter replied, "but I'll see what I can do." As long as the shuttle's pilot didn't try anything too extreme, following her flightpath would be a simple matter of avoiding the ever-changing corridor walls. Peter was pleased to see the adjustments he had made to the navigational sensors were already starting to improve 'visibility'. Now all he had to do was keep an eye on their advanced scout. Carefully, he began easing the Sentinel forward from its resting state.

<Shuttlecraft>

Ensign Makar paled as the Commander's voice trailed off and with a few choice words on his mind he muted the comm, "one quarter impulse? That's awfully ambitious don't you think? I mean, look at the walls..! We can't go through that!"

One would wonder if Miracle was insane or not as she looked at the prospect of flying this exspance with a look of a child's excitement and determination to safely navigate the Esxpance. She was eyeing the movement of the exspance corridor and the scanner readings. "Squeak! Focus on yooz job! Iz need yooz on the scanners, relaying information to the USS Sentinel. Either yooz do yooz job or Take the Meds!"

<Sentinel Bridge>

"Lets get underway," Erik said finally. "One quarter impulse, engage."

<Shuttle>

Miracle engaged and headed out into the expanse at the designated speeds, knowing she could fly the expanse at full impulse. seeing her co-worker was having a hard time adjusting in being away from the safety of the rest of the crew. =^= adjust course to 275 mark 20 =^= keeping her shuttle dead center of the convulsing corridor they were traveling.

<Sentinel Bridge>

"Two-seven-five mark two-zero," Peter repeated, confirming the course heading aloud even as he made the necessary adjustments to their flight path. It took some effort on his part to focus solely on the display before him rather than looking up toward the forward viewscreen. Despite the interference they were receiving from the expanse, instrument navigation was still far superior to flying by sight.

"Steady as she goes Commander," Erik said to his helmsman.

Several tense minutes passed as the shuttle twisted and turned through the corridor on the viewscreen the feint glow of it's impulse engines being the only thing visible of it at times. So far so good, Erik thought but it was only the beginning of a potentially very long trip. The Captain rotated in his chair toward the tactical station, "how is it looking out there Lieutenant?"

Archana, who had been intently monitoring the situation from her console, briefly glanced over at Erik. “It’s well enough so far, sir,” she responded, retuning her attention again to the readouts before her. “There appears to be an increase in cloud density and radiation, but they’re still within tolerable levels so far.” Entering a single command into her station, she continued, “I am detecting some strange gravimetric signatures, however.”

Erik nodded and turned toward Awen at her console, "Commander, what do you make of those readings?"

Frowning, Awen pulled up the readings that Archana had gotten. Her science station had more detailed information about the area around them. After considering it for another moment, she responded, "From what I'm seeing, it is likely either an asteroid belt, a small moon, or possibly another ship. I highly doubt it's a moon, though. It's much more likely that it's an asteroid belt or a small ship."

"Well that's unexpected," Erik said as he scooted forward to the edge of his seat and interlocked his fingers in contemplation. He furled his brow and muttered to himself, "what are you?"

OFF

A JP Written By:

Lieutenant Archana Sen
Chief Sec/Tac Officer
USS Sentinel

and

Lieutenant JG. Christopher Fielding
Chief Operations Officer
USS Sentinel
(Played By Lieutenant Archana Sen)

and

Lieutenant JG Miracle
Chief Flight Control Officer
USS Sentinel

and

Ensign Lionel Makare
Operations Officer
USS Sentinel
(Played by Erik Tsereteli)

and

Lieutenant Commander Peter Armstrong
Chief Strategic Operations Officer
USS Sentinel

and

Lieutenant Commander Fala Awen
Executive Officer / Chief Science Officer
USS Sentienl

and

_________________
Commodore Erik Tsereteli
Commanding Officer
USS-Sentinel NCC-83680


Wed Jul 03, 2013 8:21 pm
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Post Re: Mission 1: "Stratagem"
ON

<USS Sentinel, Captain's Ready Room, 1830 Hours>

Erik leaned back in his chair as far as it would let him and with one hand held a PADD up to read while scratching Dutch's ears idly with the other. Typically he didn't walk the dog around the upper decks but after spending so little time in his quarters over the past twenty hours he knew that the dag would require a little socializing. The dog's well being was the least of the Commander's worries however, the Sentinel while ultimately weathering the storm thus far was not without its problems.

The Sentinel had encountered a derelict vessel an hour prior as it began to make way through the expanses dense inner clouds again. The preliminary analysis indicated that it had been Romulan in origin and that low intensity energy signatures were still detectable; it had been stranded in the expanse a short time prior. No life signs had been detected and with a rescue mission underway Erik couldn't afford to take the time to investigate further.

Currently on his PADD however was a detailed report of an 'incident' that had occurred in Engineering some two hours prior, a relatively serious one. None of the ships main systems had been affected but Erik had been given the impression that repairs were still underway. System failures and mechanical incidents were the last things that the Sentinel needed at such a critical hour. Barring further delays and presuming that the exact location of the distress signal could be pinpointed in time, the Sentinel would arrive at it's destination in just over four hours. There was no time for error.

Erik righted himself and stood to stretch, to this Dutch raised his head from the floor and examined his master. Erik met the dog's gaze for a moment before setting his PADD on his desk and approaching the replicator. “One bowl of Canine protein meal, special parameter; 'Dutch'.” The replicator whirred and an orange bowl full of meat chunks, rice and gravy appeared. Erik sat the bowl down in front of his dog and made for the ready room door.

“Be good,” he said with a finger pointing at the dog and then he strode onto the bridge.

OFF

_________________
Commodore Erik Tsereteli
Commanding Officer
USS-Sentinel NCC-83680


Sun Aug 25, 2013 3:09 pm
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Posts: 35
Post Re: Mission 1: "Stratagem"
ON:
<USS Sentinel, Bridge, 2315 Hours>

The bridge was silent as each of the officers present checked and rechecked their systems for readiness as the Sentinel made its final approach to the Gryndhal system. On the main viewer a pair of blue binary stars hovered in the distance, slowly increasing in size as the ship approached. Once every few minutes a bright flash could be seen as another solar flare erupted from one of the two stars, scorching whatever had been in its path with obliterating force. It was an intimidating sight to behold.

Erik eyed the chronometer displayed on the command console of his chair, with only one minute and thirty seconds until arrival in system everyone seemed to be hanging on the edge of their chair. Erik waited until the counter was down to sixty seconds before he spoke up, “Raise shields, go to yellow alert. All hands to action stations.”

“Shields up, sir,” Archana announced, tense and ready at her station. She could sense her crewmates’ tense energy around her, yet she noted with satisfaction that each and every one of them looked prepared and alert. It was always an inspiring feeling, to find herself surrounded by such competent men and women who cared just as much about their ship as she did. Wearing the hint of a smile, the tactical officer returned her gaze to her console.

Peter's entire attention was focused on the navigational readouts before him. A starship at warp could travel quite some distance in sixty seconds and the last thing they needed was to glance off a gravitational field or careen into some unexpected planetoid. The fingers of his right hand hovered mere centimeters over the control surface, ready to disengage the Sentinel's warp drive and begin the process of safely dropping them to sub-light speeds. Timing would be everything.

Though she had been seated in the Executive Officer's chair, Awen now stood and moved over to the Science console. A swipe of her finger brought the screen back to life and she tapped on the screen to bring up the main science display. Considering how close they were, the Bajoran started up the close range scanners and sent out a single long range scan. "Science is ready, nothing else out of the ordinary is showing up at this time," Awen reported.

A minute after the yellow alert had sounded the Sentinel dropped out of warp and careened through space toward the heart of the Gryndhal system. This was an uncharted system and Erik hadn't known what to expect but as the view screen came alive with zoomed images he wished that he had known.

Between the two stars was a massive debris field some twelve AU across, some of the chunks registered as moons on sensors and the rest came in all manner of shapes and sizes.

“Number one, report,” Erik said as he stood from his chair and examined the chaotic scene before him.

"Aye sir, going through the data now." Her eyes looked up at the viewscreen briefly as she waited for the report. Reading through the data, she sorted through what would be important and answered, "What we're seeing are remnants of approximately seven planets and their satellites. That would account for most of the debris. I'm also picking up on gravity waves from the two stars, which are affecting everything in the system. It will be dangerous for any ship to be in the center area, where the affects of the waves are the worst."

Glancing at the viewscreen for a moment, Archana couldn’t help but feel somewhat awed by the sight before them. Though the situation was less than ideal, it couldn’t be denied that a front row view of that kind of planetary destruction was truly something to see. As she returned her focus once more to her console, she entered a few commands, searching for and subsequently finding the Gyrian ship through the ship’s tactical sensors. “The Gyrian ship appears to be about five AU’s into the debris field,” she said for the rest of the bridge to hear.

There was little time for Peter to wonder why the Gyrian vessel may have ventured into the debris field. As the tactical officer was finishing her initial report, he noticed a single indicator light flashing in the upper left corner of his workstation. "Captain...I think we may have a problem," Peter said, consulting the information before him, "We should be traveling at one-quarter impulse power, but according these readings, we've just passed half impulse and are still accelerating."

Raising an eyebrow at Peter's observation, the Bajoran frowned. Looking through her latest scan results, she spoke up, "We're being pulled in by the gravitational field that was formed after the destruction of planetary bodies in this area. I hate to speculate, but it could be that this is what happened to the Gyrian vessel as well." Awen paused, considering possible solutions.

"That would explain it," Peter muttered to himself. He did not need the navigational sensors to tell him they were being drawn toward the center of the starsystem. If they continued on this course, there was every possibility the Sentinel would fall into one of the twin stars that loomed before them. "Reversing engines," Peter announced, hands dancing across the surface of his console. No sooner were the words out of his mouth than the entire ship began to shudder.

Gripping the edges of her station, Archana’s black eyes widened slightly as she took in the situation on her beeping console, hardly believing what she was seeing. “We have a Vor-cha class battlecruiser decloaking nearby us—and they’re closing in fast,” she called out, mere moments before the ship shuddered again. “They’re firing on us, Commander. Shields holding at 95 percent.”

A Vor'cha class battlecruiser? It seemed that the situation they were in was destined to continue getting stranger. What would the Klingons be doing here, Awen wondered. And what had caused this destruction? Unable to do anything about the battlecruiser for now, she did a search through her databases for some ideas on dealing with the gravitation field.

"Evasive maneuvers!" Erik demanded as the Views screen shifted to an aft angle where the Klingon vessel loomed large. At over twice the Sentinel's length and armed to the teeth the Battlecruiser presented itself as a formidable foe. Maneuverability would be the smaller vessels advantage, assuming the gravitational forces in the system allowed.

The presence of a Klingon battlecruiser this deep inside the expanse raised more than a few questions, none of which Peter really had the luxury of pondering at the moment, although he definitely planned on looking into the matter at his earliest convenience...assuming they survived that long.

Peter reversed the Sentinel’s thrusters, adding power from the engines to what momentum they already had from the rate they were “falling” into the system’s gravity well, which had the immediate effect of causing the entire ship to lurch forward suddenly. Another volley passed just off the starboard bow as Peter forced the Sentinel into a hard left bank followed by a slight dip in elevation and another hard bank to the right. “Helm control’s still a little sluggish,” he called out over his shoulder as he proceeded to execute another series of evasive maneuvers.

"Where the hell did they come from..?" Erik barked as he turned toward his tactical officer. "I thought cloaking devices were inoperable in this radiation?"

As much as Archana would have loved to give him the answer to that question, she was as baffled as Erik was. “I’m unsure, Commander. For all I know, they found a way to modify their cloaking devices just for the occasion,” she responded, frustration written all over her face. “They’re preparing to fire again, sir. Return fire?”

"Negative," Erik said flatly. "Isolate their propulsion systems and maintain a target lock on them but hold your fire." The Sentinel was all alone in the Expanse with no one to turn to for aid and no chance of quickly refueling her energy reserves. A frontal assault on the Klingon ship when the enemy held initiative would just be a waste. Erik had considered the possibility of an ambush before their arrival and that potentiality had become a reality, he had also considered what would need to be done to survive such an encounter. "Peter, I want you to plot a course parallel to the gravity wells, close enough for concern but not so close that we'll be pulled in. Prepare a full stop on my mark."

“Aye, sir,” Peter responded. Several quick, sharp taps against the console brought up the grid for a new course heading on the navigational display. It only took a few moments for Peter to make the necessary adjustments, pausing every so often to evade another attack, which would bring them closer to the nearby gravity wells. They could only hope whoever was piloting the Klingon vessel wasn’t paying as much attention to their surroundings as they were at the moment. “Helm standing by,” he said as soon as the preparations were ready.

Archana swiftly targeted the Klingon vessel’s propulsion systems but, as per Erik’s command, did not fire. Though the hostile ship loomed large in the viewscreen and fairly dwarfed the smaller Sentinel, she knew better than to feel intimidated. She’d been with the Sentinel long enough now to trust whole-heartedly that the ship would see them all through, regardless of the task they faced.

Finally spotting what seemed like a potential solution, Awen looked over at Erik, "Sir, I may have a solution to our gravitation field problem. Sending a polaron pulse through the main deflector may disrupt the gravity well's hold on us so that we can get away. We may be able to also fire a pulse around the Gyrian vessel so we can tractor it out." After informing him of her idea, her fingers gripped the sides of her console to help her keep her balance.

Erik glanced at his Executive Officer and crooked a slight grin, he was sure that the Bajoran knew well enough what she was talking about and he didn't have to fully understand it to know that it had a chance of working. "How long will it take you to prepare. Commander?"

The Bajoran glanced at her console, considering the steps it would take to implement her idea. Awen first looked at Erik and replied, "It will take me several minutes, sir, to get everything configured properly. I'll also need to coordinate with Operations." Her gaze moved towards Chris, giving him a slight nod. "We're not in immediate danger from the gravity well."

"Get started on it Lieutenant," Erik replied without taking his eyes from the viewscreen. He knew that while the Sentinel wasn't in immediate danger from the gravity well the threat of combat in a remote area of space was very real. He watched the view screen as the Sentinel's course shifted so that the ship was heading around the perimeter of the gravity wells, watched as the Klingon cruiser slowly closed on them and let loose another salvo of disruptor fire. This time the bridge vibrated with more force, the Klingons had either increased their weapons yield or had struck a more vital area. It didn't matter though, in a moments time they would find themselves on the receiving end of an unlikely assault.

Her hands gripped tightly around the edges of her console, Archana quickly read over the computer’s readouts with a well-trained eye. “Shields down to 87%,” she said. “The Klingon ship is at 20 km and closing, sir.”

"Standby full stop," Erik said as the Klingon's disruptor bank began to glow green with charged energy, at under twenty Kilometers the cruiser was nearly on top of the Sentinel and Erik knew the time had come to set his plan into motion. "Now Commander!"

One swift action was all it took to set the entire plan in motion. The hum of the Sentinel’s engines dropped out suddenly and, without their assistance, the rate at which the ship’s forward progress was reduced began to increase as their momentum continued to bleed away. Peter made a few adjustments to correct for drift and the pull of the nearby gravity while still keeping one eye on the position of their enemy.

It seemed as if their sudden maneuver had indeed caught the Klingons by surprise. A moment later, however, the battlecruiser also started to slow which meant that someone had been paying attention afterall. Peter knew none of this would work unless he could get the Sentinel into a better position relative to the battlecruiser. That wasn’t going to happen if both ships continued at their current rate of deceleration. “Hang on to something,” Peter called out, ratcheting up power to the Sentinel’s engines.

The Sentinel lurched once more, dropping several hundred meters and falling back as the additional thrust reduced their momentum even further. Barely a second or two had passed before the Klingon battlecruiser sailed overhead to appear on the forward viewscreen.

"Fire at will," Erik commanded at last, as the rear of the Klingon cruiser became exposed.

Archana wasted no time in acting on Erik’s orders and almost immediately fired the ship’s phasers on full. Unwilling to leave anything up to chance, the Tactical Officer added a spread of photon torpedoes for good measure. Tearing her eyes away from her console, she watched the viewscreen with baited breath as streams of amber light shot unerringly towards the Klingon vessel, followed immediately by the familiar brilliant bursts of the red-orange torpedoes. In the tense moment following the attack, Archana, her eyes turned back to her console, finally released a quiet breath as the newest readouts showed her exactly what she wanted to see. “The Klingon ship’s engines are disabled, Commander.”

"Very good Lieutenant. Commander, bring us abo.." Erik was cut off as the ship shuddered again slightly then a second time more violently. On the view screen a pair of unfamiliar vessels moved into the Sentinel's field of view toward the Klingon Cruiser. They split in opposite directions each beginning to circle for another pass but not before one released an emerald green torpedo that began to streak toward the Sentinel. "Evasive maneuver's! Archana, return fire!"

The Sentinel's speed increased significantly at the touch of the Helm controls and the ship went into a steep "dive" away from the attack vessels. The sudden break wasn't enough to evade the homing Torpedo however and with a sudden jolt for the crew it impacted on the ship's shields. The opposing ships swung about clumsily in response giving tactical an opening.

As the ship pivoted sharply, Archana all but clung to her station, tapping madly away on her console. As ready as she was going to be, she rapidly fired two photon torpedoes a piece at the hostile ships. The results were disappointing, at best. Before the torpedoes even had the chance to reach their target, they exploded into dazzling points of brilliant light, halted in their tracks by the enemy’s phasers.

At the appearance of the unknown vessels, Fielding had been hard at work evaluating the ships’ technical capabilities, hoping to uncover any potential weakness that might aid the Sentinel in the conflict. The crafts were unlike anything he’d ever seen before, a veritable amalgam of hardware and technology that appeared to be pieced together in a manner that he could only describe as hodge-podge. After observing the tactical officer’s failed attempt to fire upon them, it seemed to Christopher that their ability to track and destroy incoming torpedoes suggested rather sophisticated tactical capabilities. If true, they were going to have a devil of a time outmaneuvering the hostile vessels.

As if spurned on by the Sentinel's counter attack the unknown vessels throttled forward at increasing speed and quickly closed the gap that the Sentinel had created between them. The vessels closed on each other as if on a collision course before finally veering away and taking separate attack vectors. One swung wide to port and lashed out at the Starfleet ship with raking golden phaser strikes while the other went low and unleashed a torrent of phaser fire on the Sentinel's ventral shields.

Erik gripped his seat as the ship shuddered from the assault, the situation had grown perilous in a matter of seconds and he had to think quickly to find a way out before it was too late.

More than a little bitter to see the Sentinel pummeled by enemy fire, Archana took a quick inventory of the ship’s status. “Shields at fifty-five percent,” she said, a thread of annoyance evident in the tone of her voice. Having learned her lesson in her last attempt, she targeted the two vessels and fired phasers on full simultaneously, hoping to take out some of their weapons arrays if nothing else.

Both phaser bursts buffeted their targets in an impressive display of raw energy and light. The enemy vessel to port continued undaunted by the attack but while it had fared well its counterpart wasn't so lucky. A fraction of a second into the strike the second ship's shields collapsed and the Sentinel's phaser beam cut deeply into its primary hull, a moment later the vessel lost power and fell back out of the conflict. Archana smiled bitterly at the partial success but was caught by surprise soon after as the crippled vessel erupted from within in a brilliant show of flame and debris.

"What is the status of the remaining target's systems?" Erik inquired quickly at no one in particular.

Archana frowned as she quickly reviewed her console’s readouts. Unfortunately, the remaining ship seemed to be holding up rather well. “Their shields are still strong at ninety-four percent,” she reported. It was baffling to the Betazoid that in a single round of phasers, one ship had been destroyed completely while the other was still in peak condition. Now if she could just find a sure fire way to recreate her unexpected success with the other vessel…

Although he was prepared to comment on the mystery vessel’s systems, a new readout on his console led to an immediate subject change for Christopher. “Captain, the battlecruiser’s engines are online again,” he solemnly but insistently interjected, feeling that the information was rather pertinent.

Erik turned to his first officer and leveled an ominous stare at her, "we need to seek some advantage in our surroundings. " He stated with calculated confidence, "once the Klingons catch up to us we won’t stand much of a chance but with some cover we can fight them on our terms."

Still holding tightly to her console, Awen frowned. It hadn't been exactly easy, working while the ship was under fire, but she had the polaron pulse just about ready. The Bajoran was not exactly thrilled at the idea of going into the debris field, but it would be easier for the Sentinel to navigate than the Klingon vessel...and the other ship, well, that would remain to be seen. The tactical part of her could appreciate the strategy and, truthfully, they wouldn't have been able to tractor in the other ship from where they were. Looking over at Erik, Awen nodded, "Another minute and I'll have the polaron pulse ready...it would be best to try to avoid any gravitational vortices, though."

"Work quickly Lieutenant..." Erik warned his executive Officer before turning his attention toward Helm control. "Armstrong, I need you to plot a course through the gravity field toward the alien vessel taking into account any locally dense anomalies."

"Yes sir," Peter replied with a slight sigh, he had come to the same tactical conclusion as the Commander; the Sentinel would have to enter the massive debris field where the enemy vessels would be wise not to follow. It would be extremely dangerous and a true test of Peter's piloting skills to be sure, "reducing engines to one eighth impulse, adjusting heading so that we can ride the gravity waves in. This is going to get rough..."

OFF

A JP Written by:

Lieutenant Commander Fala Awen
Executive Officer

and

Lieutenant Commander Peter Armstrong
Chief of Strategic Operations

and

Lieutenant Archana Sen
Chief Security/Tactical Officer

and

Lieutenant JG. Christopher Fielding
Assistant Chief of Operations
(Played by Archana Sen)

and

_________________
Commodore Erik Tsereteli
Commanding Officer
USS-Sentinel NCC-83680


Mon Jan 20, 2014 10:28 pm
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