This thread is just one of a number of stories carried out by Epsilon Fleet - a roleplaying fleet within STO.
Please feel free to visit us at the Epsilon Fleet Website
I intend to post other stories we have done in the past here also when I have the time. Please click the following link to see the story with its images included (these forums sadly won't let me include them). These roleplays were carried out in game through a series of explorer missions tailored for the story.
__________________________________________________ __________________________________ Traces of Matter (Click for full story with images) Synopsis Klingons have been sighted sneaking large battle fleets through the Arucanis Arm. Fearing that they may use the region to launch attacks against the Federation, Epsilon Fleet is dispatched to investigate the situation. While encountering the Klingons a disturbing revelation emerges that the Klingons are using the Arucanis Arm for more than a staging area for battle with the Federation.
The Admiral had sent my ship the USS Bastion to investigate the Arucanis Arm after reports of Klingon Fleets passing through the region were confirmed. Why were the Klingons lurking in this uncharted part of space? Were they trying to sneak in forces un-noticed in anticipation for an attack on the Federation? It was my job to uncover the truth of their presence and it would take only a day to confirm that Klingon activity was indeed present in the sector. For the first few days alone in a distant part of the region we came upon nothing until we picked up a strange ion signature less than a lightyear away. Long range scans revealed the source to be coming from a Klingon vessel however their engine signature was not common for a Klingon ship and appeared to have been adapted...although as an Engineer quite poorly. We followed the vessel towards a dense asteroid field for several hours at long range using reduced power levels to avoid detection.
Oddly, before we had reached the asteroid field we had detected at least 86 other individual ion trails which lead to the same direction we were heading. This was enough for me to confirm that the Klingon fleet had been discovered so we held our distance and modified our sensors to keep an accurate fix on the trail. Several hours into our scans something unusual occured and the ion trail suddenly began to fade. 86 ion trails suddenly vanishing was cause for concern so I made the decision for the Bastion to enter the asteroid field to pick up the trace once again. No sooner had we entered the belt we were ambushed by two unknown vessels that were clearly waiting for us - Despite having shields raised the initial attack caught us off guard and our weapons were knocked offline. It was at this point we hailed for fleet support but it was evident our only option was to evade our attackers within the asteroid belt. My tactical officer came up with a plan to jettison our torpedoes as a mines - something he learned at the Academy which proved successful as we destroyed one of the attacking ships. All we could do was evade the final vessel which we did considerably well in addition to jamming their communications. When the fleet finally arrived we had taken some heavy hits but failed to bring weapons online however our attacker was swifted destroyed. The USS Atlas, USS McCoy II and USS Houston (I think) arrived in good time.
I briefed the fleet on the situation and detecting that the ion trail was barely detectable I ordered that we push deeper into the asteroid field. Unexpectedly we encountered more of the raiders who seemed determined to stop us progressing deeper into the field. Our battleground engaged the raiders while the Bastion pushed ahead desperately clinging onto the traces of the ion trails...without a doubt the Klingons had passed through the asteroid belt but we could not understand how their energy signals were fading. During the battle against the radiers we discovered the cause of the dissipating matter - several asteroids were converted into processing stations which were dissipating the ion radiation. My immediate assumption was that the Klingons had made a deal with whoever owned the asteroids and long before our arrival planned to use the asteroid belt to smuggle further through the Arucanis Arm. Our only option was to infiltrate one of the stations and shut them down so we could pick up the trail once again. Once the defending ships were taken care of we beamed aboard the furthest station...Not all of us prepared however...notably Captain Hayes who seemed a little...formal for a mission of this type.
When we beamed aboard it was impossible to get a fix on any lifesigns however as we pushed deeper it was evident we were not alone. Klingons apparantly left behind warriors in an effort to stop us from picking up the ion trail and proved to be a challenge as we waged forth towards a central command chamber of the asteroid facility. I attempted to hack into several consoles but the Klingons were unusually prepared for our possible arrival and I came upon nothing of use. We did however begin shutting down the processing plans which I hoped would reveal further signs of the Klingon fleet once completed. After gruelling battle we dispatched the remainder of the Klingons and disabled all of the dissipators - the trail...what was left of it could be followed. An unusual discovery was made also which suggested the Klingons were using modified impulse drives as we suspected - other members of the fleet seemed aware of a similar situation elsewhere but further confirmation that the Klingons we were dealing with were members of the Seventh seemed to have been confirmed. We departed the asteroid base and went in pursuit of the Klingon fleet.
We arrived in the vicinity of a Class L planet and no sooner had we come out of warp were we attacked by a fully armed Klingon battle fleet. These ships were well armed and well prepared for any attack and proved to be a considerable threat. Adopting the typical aggressive tactics of all Klingons we made our best effort to destroy the battle fleet but it came at a cost. Our ships were battered from the onslaught and it was by the sheer over-aggression of the Klingons that I believe we were able to survive the attack. Captains Hayes, Hunter, and Dpoda are formidable opponents and held up against the attacking ships well. Despite the damage we were sustaining we pushed further against the Klingon fleets until we came face to face with a large Klingon carrier class which to no surprise proved to be a considerable challenge for our battlegroup however eventually we managed to disable and destroy the vessel. Our ships were too damaged to push further however our efforts were a considerable dent against the Klingon forces in this sector.
In our damaged state I ordered the battlegroup to seek shelter within the planetary rings of the nearby planet which would mask our presence. Admiral Kelloway dispatched another fleet to offer support so we could resume the investigation another day. Why were the Klingons so heavily fortified in the Arucanis Arm? Why did they put into place measures to sneak through the asteroid field in the first place? Was this a gathering invasion force or perhaps an effort for the Klingons to claim territory? The answers I hoped to discover as our investigation continues.
This is Lieutenant Commander Ellie's log of the U.S.S Cogito
We were called to the Arucanis Arm by Captain Juno Sonasi of the U.S.S Bastion to investigate disturbing reports that Klingon forces were using the region to sneak fleets of vessels to Federation territories. We analysed the logs of the Bastion en-route and learned that the Klingons had somehow acquired a new Impulse drive technology which was designed to mask their engine signatures. The problem clearly from this is that the Klingons did not know how to use the technology which resulted in Epsilon Fleet from being able to detect their battle fleet. Despite this fleets defeat however questions emerged as to why the Klingons would go through considerable effort to mask their presence in the Arucanis Arm. The region itself had many tactical and strategic advantage grounds but the Klingons had made little move towards those positions. We were soon to discover just one of the reasons that the Klingons were adopting such discreet tactics in this barely explored region of the quadrant - a biological weapon.
Upon being called assist in the Arucanis Arm the Cogito was placed in charge of tending to several wounded Klingons reteived from wreckages from the previous battle. Amongst their vessels were other species who appeared to have joined their cause, one of which - an Orion was far more revealing than the Klingons likely expected. He gave us information in exchange for leniency and revealed that the Klingons had discovered a biological weapon that they intended to salvage for the Empire. The weapon source came from a rare plant found only on a planet called "Kappa" which was discovered several years earlier by a species devoted to the discovery of medical breakthroughs. I hoped to learn more of this species but with this information we could not sit by and do nothing. I called in support of the fleet with intentions to locate the source of this weapon with hopes that it would eventually lead us to the weapon itself. The fleet arrived some time later consisting of the USS Gulan, USS Houston, USS Atlas and the USS McCoy II - a sufficient force to find a plant in my opinion at the time. When we arrived in the Kappa system we were suddenly attacked by Nausicaan raiders - matching the same description of the ships that had previously attacked the fleet it was clear the Nausicaans were involved in the Klingon plot and most likely used as bait or cannon fodder to weaken our ships. Relentlessly however we pushed towards Planet Kappa and once all enemy ships were disabled or destroyed we beamed to the surface of the planet and began our search.
From orbit Kappa looked like a dirty world so I was shocked when I discovered how beautiful it was - with plant life of great variety. Maket and David Hunter went to establish a base camp whilst myself, Koskla and Christian examined a nearby plant - to my surprise the plant matched the energy levels I was informed to search for...and to further of my surprise the damn thing moves! Apparently a bi-sentient plant which defends itself by giving a great smack to anyone that gets too close...I being the first victim of the away team...certainly not the last. After being cleared of any toxins by Captain Dpoda we proceeded to locate other plants of a similar nature in order to build an accurate scanning profile that would enable the Cogito to perform a long range scan from orbit. I'll take this opportunity in my log to note how cowardly the men of the away team were with the exception of Maket - afraid of a plant! Captain Hayes apparently was allergic to the plans so was unwilling to collect samples but best of all was when Captain Hunter heroically stepped up and got smacked by one of the plants. Fortunately he was not injured so we managed to conclude our search for the remainder of the plants and in doing so sent data to the Cogito in order for them to modify sensors and beam us elsewhere on Kappa where the biological readings were strongest.
The Cogito transported us to the other side of the planet to a site which appeared to be an abandoned research site - most likely left behind by the species responsible for creating those plants in the first place. An ideal place for a biological weapon to be created but also heavily occupied by Klingon forces. We could not waste anymore time once an alert came to us that tachyon emissions were detected in orbit...the Klingons most likely had ships nearby and given the efforts they had gone through previously would not waste time in stopping us. We engaged the Klingons with flanking tactics and were fortunate to escape their relentless attacks - we gained the upper hand thanks to the tactical skills of Captain Hayes in my view. We heard shouting from the Klingons in between our assaults which appeared to indicate that someone or some thing was out of their reach - they were planting explosives and shouting that they could not hide forever. I ran scans and confirmed that the biological readings were extremely high in the area...yet all of the structures were empty. Once we had dispatched the Klingons and taking minor injury in the process I came upon the conclusion that the weapon was underground...exactly 18 meters below ground. After running a geometric scan I discovered a collapsed tunnel and Hunter proceeded to plant explosives so we could enter.
After what felt like forever we breached the tunnel and emerged inside a dark chamber - the weapon was most definitely here but the Thermite within the rocks made it difficult to pinpoint exactly where. Pushing deeper through the tunnels we learned we were not alone, confirming my suspicions that someone else was after the weapon or already in possession of it. Perhaps afraid to engage in talking - the species hiding in the tunnels did not hesitate to open fire forcing us to advance and incapacitate them. Amidst the battle echoes of two - apparently senior members of the species could be heard. The Klingons had a ship nearby and were attempting to transport the weapon from within the tunnels out - however the species which we later learned were called Scoogians thanks to Koskla were somehow blocking the Klingons attempts. We had no choice but to press on - if the Klingons acquired the weapon we had no idea how they would intend to use it and knowing Klingons it would probably find its way to the wrong hands. Unfortunately despite our efforts we failed to acquire the weapon in time - perhaps really we were to blame as we assaulted the Scoogians so quickly that they could no longer block the Klingon transporters...it never occurred to us to take a less aggressive approach.
We quickly returned to our ships to discover our vessels under attack by a Klingon fleet and whilst defending ourselves the Cogito managed to get a fix on a small shuttle which had signs of the biological weapon. A well armed Klingon fleet made their best efforts to block our pursuit as we attempted to retrieve the weapon. We took some heavy hits and lost phasers in the battle but the rest of the fleet were more than capable of withstanding the Klingon assault. As we moved deeper towards a Class J planet it occurred to me that the escaping shuttle was going to use the gravity of the planet to slingshot out of our grasp however was surprised when the biological readings came from a large Klingon carrier. The Klingons unusually sent a transmission to us stating "You are already too late Starfleet - leave now or be destroyed". They were clearly ambitious in their ability to protect the weapon so we did all we could to destroy it and hope that the biological weapon would be destroyed with them - ending this threat once and for all. We were wrong - the Klingons played a clever game and during the battle created false readings that eluded our sensors - while we assumed the weapon was aboard their strongest ship it had in fact been smuggled onto a cloaked vessel moments before we reached orbit of the Class J planet. The Klingons had escaped with a biological weapon we knew nothing about - but if they had invested so many resources into acquiring it then surely this weapon was a considerable threat to the Federation.