Literary Challenge #41 : Call to Arms
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Join Date: Jun 2012
04-05-2013, 03:11 AM
Captain's Log - Listed stardate 2413-04-05
Audiovisual Replay Authorization S31
Audiovisual Replay - Operation Rabbit Hutch
Audiovisual Replay notes - At 2413-04-04, standard Earth time 2200 hours, Task Force Seven was diverted from standard assignment patrol to converge in Eta Eridani. This operation was officially recorded as a response to coincident Klingon and Borg incursion. In actuality, a blockade happened on Starbase Redacted. Hostile complement: Strike fleet of cruisers, support vessels, and boarding assault craft. Enemy unknown. Origin unknown. Capabilities unknown.
Involved personnel: Starfleet Archaelogy department complement, New Romulan Science Team 4 and seven Escort teams.
Starbase Redacted classified transmission signal ceased 20 minutes post contact. Presumption FUBAR. Cypher Nine was to divert all ships in command to Starbase Redacted and coordinate tactical resolution. Failsafe protocol in effect as per CO discretion. Extreme prejudice authorized.
This Audiovisual Replay was taken from Cypher Nine headcam. For eyes only.
USS Aegis, Transporter Room Two
"Headcam online, Admiral," Pion's voice sounded throughout the Aegis's Transporter Room Two. The lights were dimmed as protocol for the advanced tactical escort prototype while at Red Alert and under cloak. Engineering had the colours tuned to a deeper orange, a setting that conferred adequate illumination for most humanoids to see while minimizing power drain on crucial systems. Pion however, did not have that setting in her, so the photonic officer shone in the dark like a celestial being as she tapped away on the pattern buffering console.
The ship was in silent running with warp muffler running at full capacity, but even that failed to completely cut out the subspace hum of her warp core being taxed deep into the red. As such, over the hushed whispers of power armoured tactical officers in the Aegis? various assault transporters, they knew their ship was pushing Warp 19, underscoring the urgency of the situation.
"All hands, sound off," Vice Admiral Kha Yuung said over the entangled fermion transmitters.
"Beta squad, ready." Captain Nishizumi replied first.
"Gamma squad, ready." Said another Hazard in thick Caitian accent.
"One of Five, ready." That was a handful of Hachi?s liberated Borg waiting at Transporter Four.
Yuung looked at his own complement of Borg officers in mat-gray MACO armor, Eleven and Hachi, then acknowledged, "Alpha squad, ready. Stay frosty, Sevens."
"Hoo-ah," the other squads replied.
"The Yamato is signalling as ready, Admiral." Pion reported next.
"Good," Yuung said. "Proceed as planned."
With that command, Yuung mentally called up a passive sensor feed into his armor's HUD. He counted eight katamaran-style ships holding orbit around the Starbase behind them. The result was blurry and fuzzing, the effect of passive sensors having typically poor resolution at such ranges. There were also smaller ones, possibly frigates and escort craft, shaped in ridged domes like Terran coral -- Kha however could not tell exactly what the ridges were for with his vision this obscured. One by one, their aft warp nacelles lit up and the fleet moved into a new formation. This told Yuung that the rest of the uncloaked Task Force, even though they were still a couple hours out, was already alerting the blockading forces with their warp signatures. All fine and dandy, as the Yamato dreadnought cruiser and the Aegis were warming up for short-range transwarp. With his signal, the two cloaked vessels would jump in and engage the Unknowns in pincer fomation. With the split second transition from cloak to shields, the Yamato and Aegis would dimensionally shift their MACO-shrouded Hazards into Starbase Redacted. Each squad was to sweep their designated sector for any personnel and their cargo, recover them, and beam back. Stealth was key in this mission, as the complete lack of intel as to who and what were these aliens here for meant many assumptions had to be taken so direct conflict was best avoided. In fact, they would have favoured a more diplomatic approach, had the Unknowns not ignored all of Starfleet's hails, shot down every ship in range on their way into the starbase, and good ol' Drake had not rung him to say that there was a problem.
And so, here Kha Yuung was, hurtling through subspace with his best men, going to clean up a mess started by a careless Section Agent,
. Drake assured that the errant officer has been duly dealt with, but that made him feel as much better as a spot of Romulan ale would have. Drake even felt sorry enough to give Yuung a name of the item he was searching for, 'Rabbit's Foot'. And in spy terms, that's like giving the Admiral the full roster of every operative working behind Federation lines. Needed but useless at the same time.
The deck shifting slightly beneath his feet as the Aegis suddenly barrel rolled made Yuung's heart sink.
"They have detected us, somehow!" Pion announced. "Powerups detected on parts of the Unknown hull again. They are firing some sort of antichroniton cannon at us!"
"Ryzak, Evasive manoeuvres." Kha ordered. "All hands, drop positions!"
On command, photonic rails materialized on each transporter pad, and Kha grabbed on as the Aegis rolled in another direction, barely avoiding bare hull hits from the prismatic energy blasts. The admiral then noticed silver-white puffs erupting from the larger twin-hulled vessels into streaking parabolas.
"Torpedoes? Are those torpedoes?" Pion wondered aloud.
Up ahead, the Yamato's two hangar bays were rolling aside shutters as the ship dropped her guise. Out screamed a cloud of shuttlecraft as point defense turrets on cruiser and small craft alike spun to life, all of them spitting a hail of fine phaser bolts that lit the whole of space with exploding missiles and energy bursts. The Aegis carried on, still under cloak, using the agile dreadnought and shuttle wing as cover while banking and weaving through the few stray comets that managed to get through.
"Remind me to thank Uras'kalan for equipping those shuttles with PDTs." Yuung noted.
Pion started tapping on her console faster.
"Countdown to drop. Ten... Nine..."
Kha tucked his phaser battle rifle under his free arm. "On my mark!"
"...Three... Two... One!!" Pion finished.
USS Aegis, Ops Bridge
"We have lost the view feed."
Captain Ryzak spoke as his CO's point of view cut out from his console. A stray bolt to shields rocked him and his crew about their safety restraints for a bit. Even then, his Vulcan calm stayed in voice and in posture.
"Dimensional shifting has introduced a microvariance into the fermion coupling signal, Sir." Pion's avatar at Science Two reported in a much more frazzled tone. "Attempting to compensate."
"With haste, Photonic Officer," Ryzak said, then turned to Tactical.
"Takes us about to vector 270 mark 084 and fire a cannon volley, maximum spread."
As Ryzak glared intently at the unfolding battle, the saucer ship Aegis instantly banked to port as ordered, tearing away from the dim starbase and her hull guns burst to life, lighting up the hostile shields with impact ripples as she went for a strafting run.
"Target the small craft as they emerge. Fire at will."
The escort's firestorm shifted focus into dense cones sweeping the space around her. Her aft cannons converged on a fleeing frigate, rippling on a sliver of forcefield before the rest of the fusilade rended through the hull and left an exploding wreck in its place.
A computer alarm went off; the conn reacted; and the Aegis banked starboard, impulse at full as a twin-hulled cruiser had lumbered into the tiny ship's path. A array lit up across the frame as the unseen gunner locked on and fired. It however caught the shielded saucer of a pitching Galaxy-X. A brief exchange of beams and cannons followed before a phaser blast shredded the katamaran ship's glowing deflector. Suddenly robbed of its shields, the Unknown started peeling off; but the ever-efficient Yamato had a full spread of shining silver quantum torpedo shrieking out of its wide angled launcher and crumpling half the target with subatomic eruptions.
USS Yamato, Main Bridge
"Target is heavily damaged, Sir."
The bridge at red alert lay dimmed as Commander Hayase, temporarily assigned to Tactical One, read off the sensor report.
"Launch a cluster torpedo and keep pace with the Aegis," Captain Minase replied.
A puff of contrail flew out from the aft launcher pod and momentarily ceased as the cylinder popped open like a death blossom, scattering dark leaflets into the vacuum. Then, each transphasic seed lit impulse and swirled off with haste. For a moment, there was a meteor shower in deep space, then the bomblets smashed home. Some glanced off a hastily erected forcefield, others blasted into geysers of fire and debris, and a few penetrated the ruined hull, crossed the internal void and slammed into the other secondary fuselage. Unnamed shadows shifted as crew within a towering boom that could pass for a bridge scrambled for safety before as a lucky salvo reduced it to a tangled hulk.
"Target is out of combat."
, Number One."
On the main viewer, the Aegis cleared the firing line and fading back into cloak, bolts and torpedoes whizzing into nothingness.
"Circle around and shoot anything that tries to get back at the station. Attack Pattern Delta."
Minase tapped her combadge.
"Pion, what's the hold-up? We need an update on the boarding parties, now!"
"I'm just a computer!" wailed Pion's disembodied voice. "I can't just wave away a fermion decoupling, not without rebuilding the harmonic signal first!!"
"Then, do it!"
Starbase Redacted, Deck 15
"This is Beta Squad," Captain Nishizumi said as she watched the rest of her five-woman team pack themselves into the Jeffrey's tube junction. The glare of the lighting was almost blinding and the officers were spared only because their MACO suits had adapted with tint. "We're two decks away from our intended position, but we're intact."
"Have you been discovered?" Minase's voice crackled over the semi-compensated frequency.
"No, we have not engaged any hostiles yet, or is there any semblance of a red alert at all," replied the boarding party captain. "The lights have been turned on really bright."
She glanced down at her Science officer Isuzu's tricorder.
"We're reading every EM spectrum from microwave to gamma ray and the atmosphere is flooded with GN particles. We can't move near Engineering without disrupting some kind of radiation field and getting some kind of attention."
The engineering officer paused to check the proximity alarms of her improvised explosive devices she planted on the way there.
"But no one is coming towards us for now."
Another pause as their acting CO considered options.
"Alright, Beta squad, work your way to Engineering. Take the long route if you have, just get there in 10 minutes and kill the lights."
Nishizumi nodded to her team and started climbing.
USS Yamato, Main Bridge
Iori had her arms crossed, left index finger tapping on her arm, and sharp annoyance creased visibly on her face. She had specifically told Kha that dimensional shifting to penetrate the starbase shields even with MACO protection was a very bad idea, especially with a 30% chance of
a fermion link disruption
. But now she had lost contact with 3 boarding parties, the Admiral's included, and the only one she found was off course.
And so, here was Minase Iori, having to clean up the mess of a reckless Section Agent while getting pounded by lifeforms hell bent on turning the Yamato to scrap if they could. Even though she and most of her crew of 1000 was not even part of the shadow organization.
"Pion, where is everyone?!"
"I'm rebuilding the second harmonic signal, just searching for a quantum frequency to latch on to."
"I estimate another 7 minutes and 22 seconds."
"My people are getting killed down there for all I know. You have 5!"
" the computer complained.
"Captain," Minami at Science Two said next as she looked back from her aft-facing terminal. "I have LOS comms with Gamma squad."
"LOS comms?" Commander Kosaka noted to her captain in a questioning tone.
"That means we've got a squad in big trouble." Minase replied. "Patch us through."
Starbase Redacted, Main Space Dock, Outer Hull
Lt Comm Aric Jorgan, tail floating like a sail behind him, was sprinting for his life, if bipedaling rapidly across neutronium bulkheads while being gravo-magnetically attracted to the hull in a zero G environment could be considered sprinting. Having hot-wired the auxiliary comms array into a signal booster, the tactical officer had to clear the vast open expanse to a half-destroyed maintenance hatch where the rest of Gamma Squad was sheltered. After making an unceremonious transport into open space, they've spent precious seconds looking for an entrance into the starbase, but the best they got was a crumpled doorway that would not let anyone through.
"At least it would give us half a second of breathing before getting vaporized by energy bleedthrough,"
Aric noted wryly.
"Gamma squad, report!" Minase said over standard comms.
"We're in the middle of nowhere, Captain!" Jorgan replied then almost jumped as the wave of impact washed over them as a beam penetrated the starbase shields and singed the hull half a click behind them. "Front row view to the biggest turkey shoot in this sector. Not that I care for the scenery, but the door's locked!"
The squad rocked a little as an alien torpedo erupted a little too close for comfort.
"We've covered about a square click of dock hull, Captain, but there's still no way in. You're going to have to guide us, can't scout properly with so much danger close."
The squad's tricorders bleeped in their ears once. Aric pricked his ears on instinct and quickly scanned the horizon.
"Multiple bogeys coming out of their holes!" Jorgan yelled. "In this horrid weather? Are these hairballs on hypernip?"
USS Yamato, Main Bridge
"Helm, move us between Gamma Squad and the oncoming fleet," Minase said while typing furiously. "Aegis, you're going to have to help us thin the flock."
"Captain," Ayase reported again. "I've managed to work out the frequency of the starbase shield and tied it to our own. We can merge forcefields with the starbase and allow our weapons to fire on the starbase hull."
Iori nodded. Finally, some good news.
"Bring the rain, Mister Ayase."
"Captain, I've found a working Jeffery's tube going in at Deck 9 on the anti-spinward side," Tojou reported from Ops. "It's 2 kilometers away and there's lots of debris in between, but I can guide them there."
"Make it so!"
Gamma Squad, Phaser Bait
The five man team of reds were double-timing along the holographic guide line projected into their HUDs while the stars criss-crossed with flame and fire.
"Glad you could make it to the party, Yamato." Jorgan said as Eri passed over his party on sensor view, lining up the starship's phaser arrays to burn out hostiles closing in on them.
"Remember, if you see a bunch of guys with the flashing UV strobe, DO NOT SHOOT. That's US. It's a little low-tech, but if they scramble your sensors you can still see it on periscope."
"You don't have to tell me that," Eri replied as she dabbed on another cluster of aliens and vaporized them. "They teach us that in the Academy too, you know."
," Jorgan chucked at Eri in between huff-puffs and phaser shots. MACOs had a good rivalry going with Starfleet since their revival. And with many officers regarding the "Redshirts" as "a necessary evil", the grunts just rarely got along with the shipsters.
But as the venerable dreadnought lumbered in to blot out the sky, Jorgan couldn't help but feel a little more at ease. He hip-fired at some figures in the distance, catching the lead troop in what he thought were the shoulders, then a bolt of flaming orange came down and took care of the rest.
Inwardly, he cursed the silence and smell-lessness of EVA combat. Federation training tempered his hunter's instinct into a fine blade, but the Caitian often found space fights to be as if he was watching a holonovel rather than getting up close and personal. Oh, what rush it would be to feel the shockwave wash over, or smell the burnt paint of a downed bogey vaporized by starship bombardment!
He changed rifles, cocked a round into place, then fired off the underslung proton torpedo launcher into the distance, blasting another group off into orbit. He then signaled his squad to take cover behind another auxiliary sensor tower before piling in himself. A bright flash above saw the Yamato shields weathering rainbow antichroniton blasts while launching shining torpedoes in reply.
Aric smiled. For now, it will do.
USS Yamato, Main Bridge
Things weren't as rosy as it seems. Even if the shields were holding, antichroniton particles exerted a direct effect on the hull beneath. Especially when time in the affected sections immediately under the hit was passing faster than different parts of the ship, command and control had almost completely shut down in those areas when orders that hadn't been issue arrived and people were bumping into their past and future selves as the chroniton fields elapsed and dispersed.
Pion replicated herself into chroniton-infused clones then posted them to the affected sections while everyone else was evacuated deeper into the ship's core, were the tachyokinetic converters were able to keep chroniton levels high enough to counter the antichroniton effects. That worked well, but that required immense power diverted from Auxiliary to the ship's emergency batteries, which meant that the Assimilated equipment didn't have enough power to repair the ship at their usual pace. And since Eight built the Yamato around regeneration, the Yamato was slowly losing the war of attrition.
Iori was mentally racing a hundred parsecs an hour. They needed to either find a breakthrough, or the remaining away teams find the 'Rabbit's Foot', or there's be more exploding hulks in the middle of nowhere.
"Could had been worse," Iori mused wryly as the ship jostled slightly to several hits to the stoarboard shields. "The bridge consoles could be blast officers into space without seatbelts."
The Pion on the bridge -- if that was the original Pion -- cheered in victory, prompting a not-amused glare from Minase in her direction.
"I've finished reharmonizing the fermions!" The Photonic officer explained. "Kha and the Liberated squad have just checked in."
Starbase Redacted, Shipyard
Yuung felt this would have been better called a graveyard as his group floated silently through the vacuum. The void was thickened by debris and the photon emitters have all been smashed, providing perfect cover for the infiltrators as well as providing the perfect atmosphere for a summer's night of horror stories. Once functional Mirandas and Oberths were now spoke-tangled wrecks for him to bounce about. A couple of Borg joined Eight and Eleven, the rest of Five's squad had phased into a deeper part of the starbase and were working their way up.
Which leaves them in their current state, bouncing across half a click of wreck. This wasn't Kha's idea of a quick operation. The group then landed on a shattered saucer-section and quickly magnetized to the hull. In a low crouching gait, the MACOs bound forward under artificial gravitic pull and stopped just short of the edge. Eleven raised his finger over the edge, CMOS chip on the tip faintly gleaming as he scanned the last few decameters to the Jeffery's tube they detected.
"Two targets standing watch." Eleven replied. "Another 2 by the turbolift doors. Power levels indicate that the area has been shut down."
"Looks like they have this place covered," Yuung said. "Two, tactical analysis."
The female Borg officer took a moment to download Eleven's data records and her eyes shifted as she scanned through an invisible readout.
"Sir, these are quadrupedal lifeforms with highly developed musclature possibly capable generating a hundred Newtons of force. They carry antiproton assault weapons with edges that appear meant for close combat. Lifeform not registered in database. Assigning designation Species 56453219."
She took another moment to formulate.
"Recommend stealth followed by disabling nanite infection before tactical disposal, Sir."
"Sounds like a plan." Yuung said as he signaled the Liberated to break into 2 groups, leaving him at the perch. The Admiral scoped up and peered at pair of hostiles standing watch over the Jeffery's tube access.
"Yamato to Alpha squad. Come in, Alpha squad."
"I'm a little busy," Kha breathed.
"We're down to 5 men, but we're close to the target area."
"Acknowledged." Iori said. "I told you this was a bad idea."
[To Be Continued]
Originally Posted by
Lt. Comm. Pion
What should I wish upon the endless universe;
To be able to smile and forgive everything;
That's right, if we light up the dream in our hearts without averting our eyes;
We should be able to walk whatever tomorrow comes...
V. Adm. Kha Yuung
, and I approve of this message.
Last edited by khayuung; 04-14-2013 at