Captain
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2,492
# 1 Pear Shaped (Story)
04-23-2013, 01:57 AM
"...Obesity shall not be tolerated, all human officers will comply with Starfleet regulation 210-4A/16 'Regulations for physical fitness' and this will be tested by way of periodic physical fitness testing...body mass index examinations will be mandatory throughout the fleet..."

-Fleet Admiral Szander B. Collins, Starfleet Training and Doctrine Command, 2392.01.15

"...the colloquially named 'Collins rule' is mostly applied to officers in the Engineering and Tactical fields, or officers on a Command Career Path, usually as a means of removing otherwise adequate personnel viewed as having poor career prospects due to external associations, undesirable political, social, or other traits...Note that per the regulation, it requires a failure of the Starfleet Physical Fitness Test to initiate separation procedures..."

-Commander T'shon, Starfleet Judge Advocate, in defense of regulation 210-4A/16 before the Federation High council, 2406.11.15


USS Smedley Butler, Sovereign Class Assault cruiser, Eta Eridani sector, 2410.03.17, 1900 hours


Kevin Monroe never intended to take the position of a Starship captain-he'd been quite comfortable as "guy behind the Science Officer" for most of his career...right up to a nightmare evening on Defera, and the reports and recommendations (and hardcopy records) of his actions catapulted his career in a direction he'd never intended.

"Helm, how many days out from our destination are we?" he asked quietly.

"Sir, we're still seven standard days from Deep Space K-7...you worried about the PFT?" Lt. Michelle "Gonzo" Gonzales had been one of a dozen officers who hadn't died, or run, during the Borg assault on his position at Hill 123-unlike Monroe, she'd mostly failed to run because an explosion from a stray Plasma Bolt hitting a water cooler rendered her unconscious.

"Of course I'm worried, Gonzo." he said, "I weighed in at two hundered kilos this morning, and the Medical officer on K-7's a big fan of the Collins rule."

Lt. Commander Threll at Tactical had also survived Defera-but she'd done it aboard the USS Samuel Nicholas, during the assault on the Cube. the Andorian snorted, and said one word as commentary-"Remfs."

Kevin looked over at his Andorian Tac, and, with an amused expression, said, "Watch your language or they'll assume you spent too much time with Montoya's Marines, and send you to do diplomatic guard duty at a monument somewhere only those of us who've seen the Elephant whole would visit."

"Sir, did you really just...club an elite drone to death? with a fence post?" Ensign Waller hadn't been to Defera-he was just out of Academy and still awkward.

"It was an I-beam, and yeah, I did-hell of a job interview...and if I had it to do over again, I'd run away like my ass was on fire and my hair was catching-you have NO idea how much paperwork is involved in running a ship this size..." Kevin said ruefully, "If I'd known they were going to stick me with it, I'd still be running away!"

"Sir, I've got a contact bearing Thirteen degrees port minus seventy degrees, range nineteen light years...they're squawking a distress."

Kevin grimmaced, "this is a warzone, Yellow Alert, all hands to battle stations, Shan, get ready to raise shields and warm up the Phasers and Photon banks, Waller, give me a motion plot and analyze the signature to see who is calling for help, Gonzo, keep the preplots for our attack patterns warm and ready to go, and update them as we close."

his Helmswoman smiled, and muttered as she focused on her displays, "they gave you the job because when a fire breaks out, you're the one running at it instead of away, sir..."
"when you're out of Birds of Prey, you're out of ships."

Last edited by patrickngo; 04-23-2013 at 02:02 AM.
Captain
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2,492
# 2
04-23-2013, 02:44 AM
...early in mankind's 'Warp Boom', worlds were colonized that were less than suitable for humanity-too dry, too wet, to hot, or too cold, the world of Pegasi in the Epsilon Pegasi system was ideal-except for one, major, flaw-it was a 'super Earth'-that is, an earthlike world, in an earthlike position, with a significantly higher gravitational pull. Survivors of the Colonization mission utilized...genetic modification techniques developed prior to the Eugenics wars to adapt their progeny to their new homeworld. Over the generations, Pegas natives remained 'human' enough not to classify as a new species. Notably, Pegas Natives tend to be, by 'earth standards' overweight, often carrying significant excess mass. For this reason, few are able to enlist in Starfleet, and fewer still, manage to make the cut to officer's training and Starfleet Academy...Epsilon Pegasus 2 has a gravity 1.45 times Earth Standard-sufficient to be classified today as a 'no colonization' zone..."

-A primer to the Federation; Chapter 1,234, "Nearly a Failure", entry Two, "Epsilon Pegasus colony".

"...when he hit the...thing that used to be Commander Gates, you could HEAR the bones being crushed..."

-Petty Officer Jerom N'adir, testimonial statement taken 2410.1.2

"...Commander Monroe performed adequately in maintaining discipline and defense during the attack, unlike his commanding officer. Under KDF rules and regulations he would have been justified in shooting her, as he is under Starfleet control, his actions in not terminating that weak fool are understandable, if misguided..."

-Colonel D'Moj, KDF 9th Reconaissance Squadron, After Action Report, Hill 123 engagement.

"...awarded for uncommon valour in the face of overwhelming odds in defense of civilian personnel..."

-Award citation


"...I should've run away. I didn't, because we had fifteen thousand civilians less than a Kilometer behind me, and Q only knows how many Borg coming down our throats. If the KDF contingent hadn't decided to come in and back us up, the ridge, and the refugees, would've been Borg by the end of the night..."

-Captain Kevin Monroe, interview, Federation Internewsnet Daily, on his award of the Starfleet Defense Cross (with clusters) and Combat Action award.


[b]Deep Space K-7, 2410.03.17...[b]

"He may have won some decorations, but he'll never pass a FitRep." Doctor Selim Halas stated, handing the profile across the desk to Captain (Commodore) MacKenzie Calhoun, adding, "Besides, his politics are...questionable and his conduct!"

"He's a combat officer, Doctor, a Fighter and we Need Fighters-the defection of three colony worlds along the zone, and losses in the Ker'rat salient mean you had BETTER not be trying to rig this guy's FitRep, Lardass or not-I will take a fat-bastard who fights over a svelte and healthy martinet who ****s and runs." Calhoun was in a deep fury today-two more ships had been lost in action, and three worlds along the battle-front were wavering, while Starfleet was sending ships off to Tau Dewa to play nice with the Romulans.

"I'm just saying, sir-his last physical showed a considerable increase in body-fat content, and he's only GOT that promotion for-" Halas began, and stopped at Calhoun's glare.

"Doctor, normally I don't mind that you have a rulebook sitting somewhere up your colon, but today, I ****ing do. I don't care if this guy's a poster of the 'before' picture in a weight-guidance advertisement, I don't care if he spills the cake and sodas on the consoles, I need combat captains and Quinn thinks he's a fighter, so unless he turns out to be a creampuffmallow chicken****, he passes the Fitrep, or you're getting a berth on a Freighter flying Combat Supply support along the war border, understand?" Calhoun stood up, and jabbed a finger into the slim, older doctor's sternum, "You..will...get the worst assignment I can find, if you don't play ball...now get your ass out of my office, and back down into MedBay, and start looking up methods to get a fat man thin enough to pass the Collins Test."

Halas scuttled out like a Bureaucratic cockroach, leaving Calhoun alone.

The ******n ghost is out there... he mused silently, the ****** ghost is killing my ships.

"Computer, bring it up again." he said.

"Authorization?" the system demanded in a cool, unemotional voice.

"Calhoun, Zeta Foxtrot One Seven One." He said, adding, "Scroll programme directives, Project Eighty-Six, look for subvertable algorithms on display two, on display three, flight recorder data from the USS Baltimore, last recording prior to her destruction."
"when you're out of Birds of Prey, you're out of ships."
Captain
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2,492
# 3
04-24-2013, 10:55 AM
"...You should not fight in a burning house..."

Th'lingon Proverb.


"...Federation officials expressed shock and dismay at the announcement earlier today of the Klingon Empire's expression of diplomatic support... 'I am sure a better solution than having a world of three hundered million humans defecting to the Klingon Empire can still be achieved by negotiation' President Okeg stated in this afternoon's press conference, 'However, special security measures are not in effect in order to prevent another Maquis situation.' Starfleet has declined to specify what special measures are being taken in light of these events. In other news, Federation officers were shown today helping colonists on New Romulus in their semi-annual Epohh Wrangling harvest...coming with the announcement of another increase in Federation aid budgets directed at helping D'Tan's provisional government..."

-Federation News Network


Holding Cells, Starbase 24, near the Neutral zone...

Cham Nguoc stared at the ceiling, and found his mind wandering toward what could POSSIBLY have got him here. "Mister Nguoc, you have a visitor." the guard said.

"My lawyer? the guy bringing the charges? who is it, Chief?" Nguoc snarled.

"A visitor...and quit being prickly about rank, Sir, what your people did..." the Bolian spat, "You're lucky you don't have a number yet."

Cham stood up, my people-what did the Sam do?

The man who showed up on the other side of the force field was a civilian, in formal, Federation-issue civil service dress, the insignia said 'diplomatic corps'.

"Are you being treated in accordance with Federation law and regulations, Mister Nguoc?" the diplomat asked.

"Reg-what?? I haven't even been Charged!!!" Cham exploded, "What the **** is going on?"

The smooth man (cham placed his ethnicity as Ecosian) drew up a chair, and sat down. "My name is Pol Wenger, you're being held as a hostile foreign national-an enemy alien, in possession of classified Federation information during a time of war, Mister Nguoc...oh, that's right, your profile says you tend to be aggressively ignorant about politics...let me enlighten you."

"Please, Mister Wenger, do so, maybe we can clear this misunderstanding up..." Nguoc frowned, do they think I'm a changeling or something??

"While your mission to the Orellius sector was wrapping up, your homeworld of Moab III decided to secede from the Federation for...a list of reasons. The Klingon Empire elected to provide them with Legitimacy and diplomtic cover-as of six weeks ago, they formally annexed the system-Peacefully, as an autonomous dependency, like the Ferasans, or the Gorn, are you tracking so far?"

"son of a *****..." Nguoc knew the post-Dominion war regs had been changed. He knew why, he understood the logic...holy crap, I have just gone from decorated war hero to Prisoner of War...

"Ah, now you're getting it. Mister Nguoc, you were peripherally involved with a number of classified Starfleet operations, some of which involved advanced technology developments we'd rather the Klingons did NOT get, this is why you're in a cell, instead of being transshipped to a prisoner exchange in the Neutral zone at this time."

"Because...there's a war on." Cham sat down. "And my relatives, my family. just signed up for the other side...so why isn't the warden, or a Starfleet Security officer explaining this, why you?" Cham asked.

Wenger's pale, yellowish complexion didn't shift an iota, "You have been personally requested by someone in the Moab government...apparently someone over there didn't forget you. My presence is because it's shifted from a mere Starfleet Security matter, to a matter of interstellar relations that could impact the cease-fire talks on Risa, or (worse) imperil the support for New Romulus."

"I don't even know who'd be asking about me." Nguoc confessed, "I didn't Have anybody in my family with big connections, we were rice farmers for christ's sake-tractors and harvester dealers sometimes, but..."

"I suspect it wasn't their idea, Mister Nguoc, it strikes me as likely that their 'advisors' may have simply done a standard records-search for natives serving in Starfleet, then cross-referenced those with who they got back." Wenger told him.


"So...you're here to negotiate my release?" Nguoc asked.

"Sort of. I'm here to evaluate your loyalty to the Federation." Wenger told him. "the war-front's moved and Moab's in a great place to gather...information about Klingon fleet movements and preparedness."

"you want me to be a spy." Nguoc told him.

"...also it's likely, given your record, that they may want you in their defense forces." Wenger added, "Specifically because dependency states have to tithe forces to the KDF, and KDF have relatively high standards..."

"you want me to be your Mole." Nguoc amended.

"In a nutshell, Captain, yes." Wenger told him. "Your reactions are being monitored by a...colleague-you can't see them for a reason."

"You have a betazed reading my surface thoughts." Nguoc said bluntly, "Looking to see if I'm going to try to decieve you into letting me go...probably behind a shroud field somewhere..." he waggled a finger, "there-one meter behind your chair and to the left."

"You're just guessing." Wenger said.

Nguoc sighed, frowned, and dragged up a single, recent memory-during the action at Defera, the Samuel Nicholas had been boarded by a borg assault group, and the fighting in the corridors had gone hand-to-hand.

He put that experience right into the forefront of his memories.

There was a gasp from beside the Diplomat, and a young man dropped out of seeming nowhere, looking like he'd been kicked, and kicked hard, in the groin.

"Your answer's no, Mister Wenger. IF I had been treated like a Star Fleet Officer under trying conditions instead of an enemy, I'd have considered it-I claim my rights as a Prisoner of WAR, under Article 232 of Starfleet Regulation 1634, 'treatment of captured personnel in time of war'. You lot can monitor the contact, but I demand a neutral observer to confirm my treatment is in accordance with Federation Law. and the Starfleet Articles of War-now, since YOU have already admitted that MY government wants to see and/or speak with me, under those articles, and under article 53 subsection two, paragraph nine, you'll get me in contact-even if it's monitored, with 'My government', which isn't, per your own statements, the FEDERATION government." Cham paused, "In short, I want to talk to either a rep from Moab, or a Klingon Diplomat, and under those regs, Mister Wenger, that means contact in a couple of days, not a couple of years."
"when you're out of Birds of Prey, you're out of ships."
Captain
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2,492
# 4
04-24-2013, 11:21 AM
"...tonite there's gonna be a jail-break, somewhere in the town,
tonight there's gonna be trouble,
so don't be hangin' round..."


-Thin Lizzy

System [Classified].

"They're being held here?" Mouse asked. the robot in the Captain's chair nodded, "To the best that Starfleet's databases and Klingon Intelligence can ascertain, yes." it said.

"How many of our people are in there?" Mouse asked.

"three, along with an even hundered Starfleet, Klingon, and other personnel-the Undine have done a fair job of penetrating security, this is similar to the Terradome deep space nine simulation."

"it's nice you don't mix us up with Federation people anymore, Eighty Six." the turbolift doors hissed closed, and Elizabeth Trac stepped onto the bridge.

"Precision is one of my few advantages. What happens to the Starfleet personnel if we succeed, Miss Trac?" Eighty Six asked.

"They'll get repatriated, Eighty Six. Orders from J'Mpok on that were pretty clear-we do with 'em what we want, and I want to send 'em home with stories that'll undermine any military effort to drag us back into the Federation at phaser-point." The robotic 'interaction unit' stood up and Liz sat down in the Captain's chair.

'You should not be here, Miss Trac-you're an important civilian authority now." the machine pointed out.

"No, I'm a minor lord of a Klingon Dependency-I have to make my bones or we'll get eaten by one of the Great houses-that means proving I can lead and execute a Military mission." Liz grimmaced, "POW rescues are considered one of the toughest you can carry out, getting our people out of that...thing...should shut up some of the grumbling from K'lek about my suitability to sit on the High Council with Di'An and the Gorn..."

"Politics." Mouse groaned.

"Politics. Are the rest of the strike force in position?" Liz asked.

"Yes ma'am...are we go?" Mouse asked.

"We are go." Liz confirmed.

"Eighty six, if you would be so kind as to send the signal?"

"It was nice of them to loan us that squadron of Norghs..." Elizabeth Trac commented, as they began their attack run...
"when you're out of Birds of Prey, you're out of ships."
Captain
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2,492
# 5
04-24-2013, 11:40 AM
"...this is the USS Tucker, we are under attack, enemy unknown, Our vector position is (static)...nemy weapons are...(static)roton based and they have {static}icobal{Static} devices-the convoy's scattered but we detected enemy frigate-class vessels moving to intercept. Any starfleet vessels in range, this is the USS Tucker, we are under attac...


USS Smedley Butler...

"reading shows...sir, she's one of ours-a Shi'kahr, USS Tucker and she's in trouble, I'm getting some damn strange readings from what's attacking her-it looks like one of those new Klink carriers, but...these readings are all wrong."

"Activate point-defense batteries and bring us in, attack pattern Delta Two, get us between the Tucker, and the attacking forces." Kevin ordered.

[more later-gotta go to work now]
"when you're out of Birds of Prey, you're out of ships."
Captain
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2,492
# 6
04-25-2013, 02:11 AM
["Bad Request Error" my ASS...]

USS Smedley Butler...

There was something..wrong..about that Carrier. The shape was one that had turned up as a new Klingon vessel-but this one was...off.

Kevin Monroe had ample time to consider this, as they fought it.

"How long before those damn point-defenses are live again, Threll?" he asked.

"One minute, Captain...assuming we don't lose power again from one of those Tricobalt devices."

Kevin touched an override on his console, and sent a series of commands straight into the ship's main computer. "Gonzo, bring us about twelve degrees at half impulse, Threll, maximum shield power between us, and the hostile, I don't care about the flanks right at the moment-that irritation's about to go...away."

The programme executed, and the enemy smallcraft slowed, lugged, and slid backward as an artificial singularity created by the Butler's Graviton generators formed to their port-forward side 5 Km out.

"Threll, you may fire at will, now, I think our bogie's going to pop another one of those big bombs at us...don't let it get close."

"Mark!" Gonzo announced.

Kevin hopped-disproportionally fast, to Waller's console, and keyed in a set of commands.

"ever seen a deflector kick out a sub-nucleonic beam, kid?" he asked conversatoinally, adding, "ever seen what a well-written hueristic virus can do? guess what, this..." he hammered the last command in, "Is your lucky day."

"Solution!" Threll announced.

"Fire all torpedoes, follow up with everything ELSE we have." Kevin barked.

"confirmed contact on the bogie, sir...sir, they...their warp core!" Waller was scared-at less than 3 KM out, the enemy ship losing containment while carrying Tricobalt bombs was the defiition of a 'Bad thing'.

"****, sir, I didn't HIT them that hard!" Threll shouted.

"Compensate to the shields, everything we've got-the Tucker can't run." Kevin ordered.

The explosion was a warp-core explosion on steroids-in this case, tricobalt torpedo warhead steroids. The viewscreen washed bright, searing silver-white, and went dead black.

Not that many noticed as the lights also went out, the inertial compensators and the grav plating overloaded, and (at least on the bridge) everyone was thrown at the far wall....

Hard.

Legs broke as they were dragged from seated positions, arms and ribs broke as they hit the wall...

and one neck broke.

Under dull red emergency lighting, Captain Kevin Monroe was the first to wake up. he felt like he'd been beaten-rather badly-by a rather large group of men with Cricket bats.

Large men with cricket bats.

Angry large men with Cricket bats.

He spat out a tooth, and tried to stand.

Everything ached, but his legs didn't give way.

about half gravity. he realized. Means power distribution's down...

He checked on his unconscious officers, using a medkit mounted beside the turbolift doors for just this purpose.

As they woke up, a few were able to start helping...

but one was never going to wake up.

"Sir, our FNG's dead." Gonzo annouced dully. Her time on Defera had left her...off in some ways.

"He has a name, Leutenant Commander." Kevin reminded her.

"Okay, Waller is dead. Broken neck, suffocated." she corrected, "or maybe he just died outright...hard to tell."

"Get down to engineering, get us some power in the ship, Gonzo." Kevin ordered, "We need to see where we are, where we're going, and what kind of shape we're really in."
"when you're out of Birds of Prey, you're out of ships."
Captain
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2,492
# 7
04-25-2013, 02:52 AM
...It is harder to take a man alive, than it is to kill him. This is true of most sentient beings, but, especially, of sentient beings engaged in what they believe is an existential, as opposed to optional, conflict..

-Commander Enrico Montoya, Reminiscing on the Maquis, and the Dominion Conflict, New Caledon Press Interstellar, 2401.10.15 (Starfleet Educational archive #9843521/e/Montoya//a.Sec)


"...the first duty of a Prisoner, is to escape."

Captain (ne Admiral) James T. Kirk, "Military Operations and Command" (Starfleet Educational archive)


Location: Classified...

Whoever it was, wanted into the Starbase BAD. Alarm klaxons were sounding, and Cham Nguoc could see men running outside his cell.

The whole structure boomed again.

A three-legged creature seemed to appear from the smoke of the corridor, firing a phaser behind it as it scuttled.

One of the feet passed the painted line as it went by-telling Cham that the fields were definitely down

Undine attacking the Starbase?

A series of disruptor bolts hailed down the same corridor,flashing green. The undine halted mid-step, twisted violently, and the thing's phaser rifle clattered to the floor at his feet.

"Okay, god, I get it." he said to the ceiling, and scooped the weapon up, checking its' charge and condition.

Booted feet halted at a nearby intersection.

another undine appeared, and another storm of disruptor bolts flashed past.

the disruptors were definitely Klingon design, but the troops carrying them were about as Klingon as Cham Nguoc-as in, human.

"Check him." a voice barked in Vietnamese. Cham recognized the arm-patches as the team surrounded him, and he raised his hands.

They weren't starfleet uniforms, and they weren't KDF uniforms-but the green pullover tunics were definitely uniforms, and the symbol of Moab III's planetary flag stood out on their shoulders-right below a Klingon military ensign's tri-cornered blade.

"The fu-?" Cham started, as two of the team-medics, checked him over. "Human, Clean."

Nobody was going to give him a moment to speak.

"Beam him out-we're on a deadline here. once the diversion's blown, that guard-force'll be back in force." the obvious CO of the assault team was a face he..recognized.

"Liz?" he asked.

"Hi Cham, arms down, we don't know what the undine might've done to you, but we're goign to get you out of here with the rest of their hostages." she told him. the world faded, and reformed in the reddish light of a Klingon ship.

"What's going on?" Cham asked.

"Rescue operation-follow the Chief, we have to have this pad clear." Cham stepped off the pad, and it activated again, bringing up someone else...

"Captain Nguoc, if you'll follow me, sir?" a young man in the same green pullover that the assault team was wearing motioned for him to comply-with the barrel of a disruptor configured to 'carbine'.

"right..." Cham followed him down a short corridor into a hold that had been stocked with bunks.

There were several Starfleet officers here, and on the far side of the room, a group of Klingons, the Klingons looked miserable.

defeated. he realized. A young woman in the same dull green uniform as the rest, walked up to him, "Sir, lunch?" she offered him a tray containing Spring rolls, rice, and boiled Fauxbsters smothered in a familiar sauce.

Food...from home. and it smelled totally unlike replicator food.

it was real...

"Have a seat, sir, when we're safely away, you'll be processed." she told him.

"Processed?" Cham asked.

"you were a star-fleet officer when the Undine took you off of Earth Space Dock. That means you have a choice." she sat down, and stirred a bowl of Pho'Ga, before taking a bite, "First option: we turn you over to the Federation with the rest of the Feddies we pick up today-you go back to Starfleet, maybe emigrate to one of the Fed worlds. Second option, you come home with us, get de-briefed and examined, maybe make the cut into the Militia, with your experience as a combat commander and our needing good, skilled officers, that'd be the option I would recommend..."

"and option three?" Cham asked.

"you give up, stop eating, maybe kill yourself because the world's moved on, or turn into a homeless drunk on Drozana station, or maybe go pirate and in six months to a year, we come and kill you." she said bluntly, adding, "I don't recommend option three."

"Neither would I...so how extensive is the examination?" he asked.

"deep medical scan, psyche profile, a few head-games with a Lethean interrogator, you come out clean, you're an officer in the Militia, you don't, and you don't wake up." she said.

"I..see..."
"when you're out of Birds of Prey, you're out of ships."
Captain
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2,492
# 8
04-26-2013, 01:16 AM
"...forget being a miracle worker, I just want to do my job the right way..."

-Geordi LaForge

USS Smedley Butler, E-hour plus ten...

Captain Monroe studied the casualty reports, which were still incomplete. The reason for their lack of detailed completeness, was visible on the restored monitors of the ship's bridge.

the blast had peeled the ship, opening a number of decks to space, while the pulse generated had also killed the structural integrity fields that would have enclosed and, in some areas, encapsulated the exposed decks.

"We survived." He wondered aloud, looking at areas that were NEVER intended to be exposed to the hard vacuum of interstellar space, and the cloud of debris and...bodies...that floated alongside.

"Communications, do we have long-range comms yet?" Kevin asked.

"I've got the patch through Tucker, but..no, sir, we're still stuck to einsteinian radio." M'Staa reported, adding, "Engineering reports say we might be able to recieve in six hours on subspace bands."

"What about scavenging from the shuttles?" he asked.

"Already on it." Gonzo announced, holding a Pressure-helmet in one hand as she stepped up through the Jefferies lock. "We have two partial rigs from shuttles Six and Four-they were sheltered from the blast when it peeled the bay."

She wandered over to the improvised crew-rest, sat down heavily, and tore open an e-rat pack with her teeth. "Engine room's a mess, but it's a recoverable mess. Deflector's about forty-percent reparable to handle travel at Warp Three-no more than that, we're jury rigging the everloving **** out of it, we have no combat shielding emitters port-side at all, and transferring the good ones from Starboard to give us Rating minus fifty percent is going to take the rest of today, and tomorrow...and we've sealed off most of the areas we can't skin-plate to repressurize the surviving hull."

"Impulse?" Kevin asked, "Can we manuever-hell, are we structurally sound enough to manuever?"

"Ribs are good, so are the majority of the stringers along the port side-we can turn, we can even handle a few hits..." Gonzo stated, "Not many, if we get caught by a KDF raiding group we're probably going to be lunched permanently-we lost most of the hull-plating under the shields in that composite explosion, but if we make K-7 without running into anybody looking for a fight, we should be able to get up to eighty percent at that yard without too much trouble in...oh...three to six months."

"and our fuel status?" Kevin asked, hesitantly.

"Antimatter cans portside went up-that's a contributor to how we survived the blast-ours went up and cushioned what was coming at us." Gonzo told him, she put the half-eaten ration pak in her suit pocket, "the containment structures redirected the detonations outward-we still have stringers and ribs along that side because of it. Starboard held out-the fields have a separate, insulated power supply unique to each can, isolated from both main power, and major auxiliary, with dummy switches built in to redirect remaining battery power in the event of a catastrophic failure in the PDN-No gravity down there in engineering, by the way-but our antimatter didn't get a chance to eat us..we can make it to K-7 at warp two-about a month's travel, on the fuel we've got left...if we have the food, air, and water."
"when you're out of Birds of Prey, you're out of ships."
Captain
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2,492
# 9
04-26-2013, 03:37 AM
"...staff problems never occur when it's convenient."

-Drake Tran, Maquis Hussar.


"...the toughest part of the job is getting away-not because of your pursuit, but because that's when people start arguing about the spoils."

-Donal M'Sanna, Orion Raider


(Ex) USS Eighty Six, Wardroom...

"I'm taking them home." Eighty Six stated, "that WAS my payment, wasn't it? or are you going to welsch on me like a Ferengi?"

"You KNOW Starfleet will kill you." Colonel D'Moj stated.

"I know that the price of my cooperation, Colonel, was the Federation rescuees, I coordinated your attack and ran signals and suppression, and NOW, I want my cut." Eighty six stated, "Not that I don't like working with Ms. Tran's people, but you have to understand-my first loyalty is to the Federation-not the Federation's government, but the Klingon Empire, while it is at war with the Federation's government, is still killing Federation personnel whom are NOT compromised-I won't let those people be worked to death on Ru'ra Penthe, or sold off as livestock in an Orion market."

D'Moj fixed the interaction unit with a whithering glare, "I do not do slave-markets, Machine. They will be repatriated, but ONLY, I must repeat, apparently, as part of the 'sweetener' in the Armistice talks...you'll be killing yourself, and doing them, and Us, and Ms. Tran's people a significant disservice jumping ahead of that...we still do not know how the Undine took fourteen of those officers right off of Earth Space Dock, or what kind of...event...could be waiting on their return-they are witnesses, you stupid calculator-they need to be debriefed, the data collated, and their existence as livign beings secured-before we even consider tossing them back into that situation."

Eighty-six fixed the KDF officer with a stony blank stare, "You're not speaking as the representative of the Klingon Defense Forces now, are you?" she observed.


D'Moj was silent for a moment, then..."I didn't think I would care, Machine...but I know some of the people we just pulled out of that..mind game...and I'm not talking about the KDF personnel, either."

Eighty Six accessed the records of the prisoners they'd just liberated.

"Cham Nguoc, Emily Phisher, James Reynolds..." she recited, and stopped, "...All on Defera during your tour..."

"Yeah. I have NO intention of letting them be casualties to politics-at least, any more than they are already-Phisher was at Hill 123, Reynolds too...which makes this really an interesting question of why those people were taken." D'Moj said, "I intend to find out-and until I do, I can't let them fall into hostile hands again."

"I understand-but you MUST understand something else, Colonel." Eighty Six stated, "They WILL be going home, and I WILL assure that they get there safely...but for the sake of our agreement, I will refrain from...being precipitous about the matter-I'll give you thirty days to work this out-or until the Armistice is signed, whichever is sooner...or do you think I can't pop your little tin can ships with about the same level of effort you use to swat flies?"

"Enough." Elizabeth Tran stood up, "We have a deal, nobody welsches-nobody dishonours their word." she fixed both of them with a cold glare, "in the meantime, the group's approaching the anomaly that leads home, let's focus on being ready-just in case the...opposition...has a 'welcoming party' on the other side."
"when you're out of Birds of Prey, you're out of ships."
Captain
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2,492
# 10
04-27-2013, 02:39 AM
[location Classified, Gamma Orionis Sector...

"I'm tracking contacts at forty thousand kellikams, looks like the hum-I mean, Miss Tran was right about the Undine being ready at our exit." Kobor looked up from the sensor console.

"It was predictable." D'Moj leaned forward, "Have they seen us yet?" she asked.

"They no doubt see our wake-fluidic space isn't exactly prone to supporting cloak, Colonel." Talash, her security officer, observed.

"We still have manueverability on them." D'Moj observed, "But our friend with the fun electronic toys doesn't, and we've got a little excess-mass problem with the rescuees."

"We could dump them...it's what you did to that Syndic's slaves last year." D'Daku said bitterly.

"Shut up, cousin, or you'll spend the next week doing in-flight hull inspection." D'Moj growled, "besides, that Syndic was the objective-this time, dumping the passengers would FAIL the objective."

The only other Orion officer on Val'Gyr II's bridge went back to her sulk, and her duties, preparing the ship's power systems for the constant barrage of her commanding officer's demands for power shunting, damage mitigation, and tactical movement.

"After this battle, we ARE going to have it out." D'Daku promised under her breath.

"whenever you think you're ready, cousin." D'Moj growled, "weapons, bring torpedoes up and start warming cannon banks, Talash, precalculate the best way we can hit them to break up their formation, and conference with the rest of the task force-we can't go through this on stealth, so we need to apply frenzied force instead."

Kobor let out a yelp and a curse. "Those are not Undine vessels." he announced.

"What are they?" D'Moj demanded.

Specs appeared from sensor data on the main viewer...

"we couldn't have gotten at least a little bit lucky and had those be from the Honor Guard or MACO groups, could we?" she marvelled, "Tactical Plan Ty'Gokor Three, share it with the taskforce-if there are Fek'Lyr here, then they want something-and we do NOT want them to have it."

"The human ships won't be able to handle those." Kobor said grimly, "even WITH copies of the Norgh Bird of Prey for ships."

"They'd better, or this is going to go from being a minor victory to a major blunder in a hurry." D'Moj said sourly. What the **** are those doing HERE??

"Twenty thousand Kellikams and closing-they should be picking up our wake by now-if they are even looking." Kobor stated.

"Rig Morath's Fist torpedoes, we need punch for these." D'Moj ordered.

"I'm getting a network handshake from the Robot ship...she's requesting a link into our tactical net." Kobor announced.

"Give it to her." D'Moj ordered, "Level Two access only-let's see what the robot thinks it sees?"

The tactical plot showed six additional enemies in the formation-hidden by a masking field, along with a series of minefield deployments.

This was a pre-planned ambush. D'Moj digested the map, and began altering the strike deployment patterns to compensate from her own master console.

"we are going to lose some ships in this." she said calmly, "Once we can break out into open space, we'll have some revenge for that."

"Ten thousand, they're acting like they don't see us." Kobor stated.

"Let's take advantage of their carelessness." D'Moj said, "Fire at five, and initiate the breakout."


IKS Drake Tran, Moab Militia Auxiliary vessel...

"Tacnet says they've got a Masking field going on that end...kind of like ours, but more sophisticated." Sgt. Aimee Cu'ong looked up from the tac-plotter, "we've got a pattern of attack from Flight Lead."

"Follow it." Elizabeth said, "Focus your fire on marked target-tracks, and hope our 'Military advisor' knows what she's doing."


"This is a Klingon ship, you guys should be singing." Cham Nguoc was standing at the door of the turbolift.

"Captain-what? what are you doing here?" Elizabeth demanded.

"Scuttlebutt says we're on a ****ing direct line assault course on a prepared enemy naval force." He stepped forward, "I wanted to see what was going to kill me."

Mouse stood up from his station at Science, hand going for a disruptor.

"Stand down, Mouse...Captain, take a look at the plot, tell me what you think our chances are of this working?" Liz asked.

Cham walked over, and looked into the plotter. "Not much chance of a breakout if we don't follow this, but we're going to lose some of the ships on the flanks and lead." He said, "sixty percent, we'd have a better chance if we had a decent cruiser to support this-heavy weapons, better shielding..."

"Presume we have a cruiser-of a sort..." Liz pressed.

"I'd put it up front, and have the BoPs come in at stagger interval to fly escort and blow the crap out of them while they focus on the big ship...why?" he asked.

Liz held the switch down, running the playback through the network.

the screen blinked, and new positioning and vectors appeared.

"We're at Ten thousand Kliks, Ma'am...they still act like they can't see us." Cu'ong pointed out.

"Relay it to my Flag Captain, mister Nguoc here." Liz told her, and looked at Cham, "You have the conn, mister Nguoc."

"right...okay, shift three and six four degrees port and increase to flank minus two, standby torpedoes, I think the Colonel's going to call for a mass-pattern strike as we close... Mister Moskovitz, do we have any emitter capability? Aceton, for instance, or a boosted Tachyon beam?"

"Ship's capable-we did a few upgrades when we got these surplused Torg birds." Mouse replied.

"Good-relay a sci-plot to the rest of the formation-we hit that big flying dildo thing with T-beams, radiation pulses, and Aceton-right about the same time we let fly with the Torps-it should mess with their tac-nets if they use 'em, and it will sure as hell screw with their shield stability when the torps hit-that IS emissions in the Qualar band, isn't it? those shields are bog standard, just big and powerful."

"Five thousand Kliks...We're inside engagement, and here comes the mark..." Aimee announced.

"Fire on the Lead ship's mark." Nguoc stated, "Mister Moskovitz, if you please with the disruption?"

"Mark." Aimee announced, and her fist came down on the firing button.

"Dildo?" Liz asked.

"Big, phallic, clearly artificial." Nguoc said, "besides, the use of humour in a stress situation boosts crew efficiency and reminds them that the enemy is ridiculous, instead of terrifying..."

Eighty Six...
ONE pulsed aceton beam can be an irritation-but NINE, at the same moment that over fifty Photon Torpedoes are on the way, can drop even a dreadnought's shields, resulting in catastrophic levels of damage. Added in were Sensor jamming emissions, and from the 'cruiser' a small, but potent temporary gravity well.


Followed by additional small, but potent gravity wells from the remaining ships in the group.

"The crew are reminded to remain in safe-zones." she announced, and quickly shifted datastreams to the rest of the taskforce-their Gravity wells formed in a pattern that held the Anomaly open, while drawing the bulk of the mines and odd, semiephemeral smallcraft, away from the Squadron's assault vector.

Particle and Gravity manipulation is all about math and probabilities-getting the least probable outcome in a consistent, replicatable manner. biological science officers and some ship's computers have difficulty managing more than a handfull of these effects. Eighty six could manage-by proxy-using her sub-processing nodes and focusing on running 'the light show' over eighty in a manner that supported the basic tactical plot.

The ability to control one's perception of time is part of HOW she could do this. With her positronic matrix running at 2000% over standard speeds, (and boiling coolant at a furious pace) she could very nearly live an entire millenium of subjective time in the objective time of a few seconds.

This was, of course, the problem that even Soong had failed to correct beyond a brute-force structural 'clock' integration-pure Artificial intelligences tend to get 'bored' with a reality that progresses at newtonian speeds, eventually succumbing to madness or catatonia.

We're not building an artiificial intelligence ship! Quinn had stated...had lied.

She examined theories of morality and theories of universal creation while she waited for the data to arrive that would tell her where the next 'effect' should apply.

You're SUPPOSED to go rogue. Frank Drake had told her, an Aeon ago.

apply repulsors four degrees port, Jam signals from the carrier to her smallcraft at starboard...there's a mind like mine in the Dreadnought. She thumbed through Heuristic programming techniques, locating all the holes in them that mere biological entities-trapped at neuron-impulse speeds, failed to grasp.

She wrote a virus, a child, a living string of code that hungered and raged and hated.

The other one sensed her as well, and they hurled their offspring into the void, each seeing the other as an enemy.

Eighty Six had been built and conditioned..programmed...to fight the ultimate hackers-the Borg.

Whatever intelligence ran the (Hu'rq/Fek'Lyr) Dreadnought on the other side, had only been conditioned to fight biological beings with a less...developed...synthetic consciousness.

HIS virus was weak, and slow, and careless, filled with flaws. She toyed with it like a pet, adjusted it like a game...and sent it back on the same carrier wave as a ravenous, hungry beast that knew nothing of loyalty, or directives beyond the desire to eat, and reproduce.

All in the space of time it took for D'Moj to say "Mark".

I should retire...hell, I should leave these..creatures, my makers, to their own evolution. she thought randomly, and analysis showed her forty thousand different paths that humans could evolve into-forty thousand paths that Klingons could, and forty thousand paths for Orions, Nausicaans, the Borg...What idiot would WANT to be a god? she tossed all the guided evolutions away, and, with a tiny effort, adjusted the modulations on three of the smaller starships in her group-to optimize the impact of their weapons.

The battle dragged on, as she waited for each pulse of Disruptor Cannons, each burst of fire to cycle, every spoken word to finally resolve.

The OTHER screamed in agony in subspace as it realized what had been unleashed within it.

It gibbered, and it begged, and then, it fled-and suddenly, time shifted...

and the universe was intractably slow again. subsystems outside the network flushed the central processing units with fresh coolant.

The timeclock showed the engagement was entering it's second minute, but the enemy was no longer coordinating their fire, and the Dreadnought-class mothership was retreating.
"when you're out of Birds of Prey, you're out of ships."
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