Literary Challenge #36 : The Haunting of Deck 13
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Join Date: Jun 2012
01-09-2013, 02:06 AM
Captain's Log: Stardate 88021.5
It started simply, I suppose as this sort of thing normally does... with a whisper. The occasional chirp here and there of a comm badge that no one called, the sensation of being watched, getting a shiver down the spine, crewmen hearing some one call their names when no one else was there, but then it slowly escalated. Suddenly people were finding things missing or in places they weren't left, some reported being touched by an unseen hand, and before long people were reporting seeing a figure roaming the halls, a figure described as a bluish shadow that never fully manifested. By the time the rumor reached me over dinner at the captain's table deck thirteen had been officially declared haunted by the crew. I'm not the spiritual type, but I've learned there are a lot of strange things that happen out in space.
Officially we were returning to the Tau Dewa Sector. The Romulans were having repeated issues with the Hirogen harassing their colonies on their new home world and The U.S.S. Geist had been asked to intervene. It seemed like the closer we came to the Neutral Zone the more reports of hauntings until Crewman Wraith went casually passing through, and by passing through I mean the wall from the hall way into the Mess Hall scaring the hell out of one of the lieutenants on duty. The boy's a tough one but this time he would be in sickbay for a few days which put a halt to our trip to New Romulus until we figured this out. The last thing we needed was to bring a new trouble to their doorstep, the Romulans had enough on their plates as it was.
First step was to do a full systems check and security sweep of the holo emitters. The Prometheus class ship is one of the few ships in the fleet that has holo emitters running along the entire ship. Normally they're intended to allow the EMH free range of the ship in terms of medical emergencies, but I've been using them to run drills and tactical simulations as a means of training. My first thought was that somebody was maybe using the system to carry out a vendetta one of my crew, but systems checked out, no intrusions or unauthorized access. I had science officers scanning for various factors both inside and out of the ship, subspace anomalies, temporal distortions, life signs, or even evidence of a cloaked ship. Nothing. There was no discernible cause for what was happening and no evidence that it was happening except for a member of my crew in sick bay and a crew member shaped hole in the Mess Hall.
Hours went by with little activity, but much like any ghost story it didn't stay that way. Periodically we would start getting power fluctuations as well as problems with environmental controls. I'd restricted access to the entire deck while teams ran every test they could think as well as repairing the damage. Chief Fine was going over a few of the plasma conduits near the hole when one of her team bringing her tools spotted our 'guest' looming over her as she worked. The ensign described that it looked like the entity was reaching out for her, causing the ensign to drop her tools. As the Fine and the entity turned a near by panel exploded during a power fluctuation and suddenly the thing rushed the ensign vanishing right as it hit her knocking her on her butt. Luckily neither were harmed but it seemed that our specter was becoming more aggressive and possibly stronger, but as one of the science team discovered, the stronger our ghost became the more ambient energy it needed.
With that the senior staff began calculations on how frequent the sightings were as well as what was going on during each one. The entity stayed mostly near the Mess Hall and the shuttle bay one deck directly above. As occurrences became more frequent it was Edison, my science lead who pointed out that they were also narrowing to a single point on the ship. There were a lot of variables which seemed to effect the pattern, the most notable of which was Chief Fine herself. When ever she'd gone to deck thirteen for the various repairs the entity appeared, often close to her position. For a while I decided to pull her off the repairs and things seemed to die down a little. Any one who needed to go through there needed clearance as well as a security escort. Things had been quiet enough for a few hours and I was almost able to get a full night sleep until replicators in the Mess as well as the surrounding crew quarters. The resulting overload blew out power to the aft relays which brought the rear turrets offline.
It was bad enough that the ship was 'haunted' but I'd be damned if we were going to be defenseless in the middle of the Romulan neutral zone. Devon, while a little unnerved by her stalker, was more than willing to return to repair duty as returning power to deck thirteen but I wouldn't let her go without two guards in tow at all times. When not on deck the entity began gravitating towards the crew quarters, each time either appearing as a shadow in peripheral vision or up to old tricks of moving things. But it wasn't until it hit the quarters of Lieutenant Molyse, the only Bolian on board that it became violent again. The lieutenant never stood a chance. Sensors picked up another energy flux in his room, but not from any of the ships systems. By the time security responded Molyse was as Dr. E'Saul put it... Anatomically inverted. He died shortly after in sickbay. He was still alive when they found him. What ever this thing was it had just maliciously killed a member of my crew and in doing so deemed itself too dangerous to let live.
Dealing with this thing became a lot more important than it had been hours before forcing me to put the ship on yellow alert. Rather than just having the science teams plowing through data, I devoted all senior staff to dealing with the entity. Confinement, defense, and if need be a way to put it down, all options were now out on the table. While going over tactics Edison began picking up various anomalies readings, he was picking up massive drains of ambient energy dropping temperatures all over the deck as well as pulling power straight from the ships power systems, the energy buildup alone was wreaking havoc with internal sensors but there seemed to be a mass of particles massing in the mess hall under the main power relay for the shuttle bay. For all intents and purposes what ever this entity was it was forcing its way into our universe.
I ordered red alert and all security to converge on the Mess Hall, force fields set in place to quarantine this to deck thirteen. Sensors were of no use so any thing from then on was all from reports from the teams sent in. As it began to emerge there was a sudden wave which emanated the entire ship over along with a serious burst of Chroniton particles. The strange thing was some of the more psychic species on board were hit the hardest. Dr. E'Saul and Fizi were both incapacitated in sickbay Commander T'pal and Mr. Sabin on the bridge dropped as soon as the wave hit. Lt. Commander Nassan, a Betazoid on the security team died instantly. Crewman Wraith as a Vulcan was left unaffected since most layers responsible for mental abilities including the mesiofrontal cortex were altered as a means to adapt his heavy biogenetic augmentation since psychic abilities weren't much use on a foot soldier. What it did do how ever was hurt the first two people he considered friends once he came on board.
Once the entity came through it was all to clear what it was, at least what it used to be. A Bolian in a Starfleet uniform, at least that's what it used to be. Once everybody began to regain composure did the newly formed hulking mass begin its attack. Security began firing phaser bursts, pulse waves in the front line, sniper rifles from a distance. The creature, a mutated mass of muscle and hate dressed in shreds of uniform, began smashing its way to the two teams. Stun settings were useless so I gave permission to switch to kill, not an order I give often and when I do, its with reluctance. Slowly the blasts were taking chunks from the beast but only enough to slow it down. Most of the forward team were pressed against the walls or flung a few meters from the monster flailing his arms. As it was about to reach the second team Crewman Wraith came flying passed the team. I almost wish on some level that I'd been there to see it. It's not often that he goes all out, and from what the crew described it was a sight indeed.
I'd only seen it a few times myself, shortly after we'd found him in a raid on station that was performing illegal scientific experiments. Section 31, a few members of Starfleet Council and any one else with high enough clearance were curious as to "the full potential" of what we'd found, all holodeck simulations of course, but it was something. But not enough. As the teams pulled out the wounded they described a brutal battle. Wraith was a blur landing heavy blows, dodging and weaving most attacks but the ones that landed were enough to kill a normal crew member. The team reported hearing Wraith talking to the creature but couldn't make out what he was saying other than trying to talk it down. The large blue creature was yelling back at him incoherently but almost enough that one officer thought it said "Traitor". Once both teams were at a safe distance the thing smashed Wraith through the freshly patched hole in the wall into the Mess hall. From what Wraith said he was barely able to prop himself against the hull as the thing came in at him lunging fist first. The boy just managed to leap out of the way into the kitchen as the thing punched right through the transparent aluminum and right out into space due to the explosive decompression. The emergency force field activated and medial staff rushed in to assist the survivors while on the bridge I had Keating lock on with the antiproton cannon and destroy the thing.
Almost a year ago a large section of the ship vanished into thin air in what we assumed was a temporal subspace anomaly. The psychic blast was actually a temporal shock wave, a rift caused by Lieutenant Mallio Literally forcing his way back into existence. He'd been erased from the time stream but some how continued exist, fueled by his hatred of Wraith, mutated by god knows what energies out side of time, and forgotten by the crew he once saved. The Monster he'd become was incinerated by the cannon, what it was was only a shadow of what he used to be, but I couldn't leave it to be found or studied, not even by the Federation. Mallio didn't deserve that, not even after what he'd become.
Captain James Charles Donovan
Computer, end log.
Last edited by wraithshadow13; 01-09-2013 at