Discussion in 'Fan Fiction' started by Warp Rider, Nov 3, 2013.

  1. Warp Rider

    Warp Rider Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    May 1, 2009
    Another Galaxy. Canada.
    Premise: After the Dominion War and the destruction of Romulus, Starfleet has set its sights upon the Gama Quadrant; in order to continue their mission of peaceful exploration. Using the Wormhole and traveling ten light years to an unexplored part of the Quadrant, between the Alpha Q and Bajoran borders. They encountered a young Warp fairing civilization, called the Xoasians.

    Once joining the United Federation of Planets, Starfleet discovered their unique talents for flying and feeling their way through space, making them valuable pilots for starships. Many joined as NCO's to explore the unknown along a crew of mixed races from through the UFP.

    After the construction of Gama Station One, some Xoasians even joined up for academy courses that were being taught aboard.

    Now in the year 2390, a retired, middle-aged, Captain is asked back into service. He is a man who has seen his fair share of battles, and left due to a haunted past. Filled with regret for what he became during and after the Dominion War. Not only brought accepting this mission for pure exploration of the unknown. But to hopefully rectify past mistakes and mend bridges of a kind...

    Captain Charles Gibson is given command of the first ever newly built, advanced long-range, Deep Space Explorer ship; created to replace the Galaxy class. Unofficially called the Galaxy Mk II. Officially, the first in it's class, the USS Pioneer. NCC-971986.

    He and his gallant crew made of some familiar, and some never before seen races. Will take the Pioneer out on it's maiden voyage into the uncharted regions of the Gama Quadrant.

    It's mission: To seek out new life.. New civilizations.. and to Boldy Go Where No One Has...

    Gone Before....

    Author's Note(s): This is definitely a new adventure for me... actually attempting to write a ST fic isn't easy. I am more used to writing short episodes in a Japanese Superhero format. But I after doing that for so long I became bored and wanted to try something new. I have considered doing this before, but due to medical reasons I was prohibited from doing so.

    Now is a good a time as any to get back into the swing of writing stories again. Though in a different format to what I'm used to. I am going to try and do these in a Novella kind of format. Each episode will have a prologue and so many chapters, I'm hoping for at least 6 chapters each... though it could end up being more. Just depends I guess, and I don't think any of you would mind more chapters to a story. I just hope some stories won't be too short. heh.

    Still I hope you fellow Trek writers/ fans will enjoy these stories when they go up. Constructive critiquing is welcome, honestly I think I need it cause I'm a little rusty at this now... Especially since I've been working on scripts/ screenplays a lot more lately. Heh. But, I want to tell this story about this crew. It's also partly a Father-Son story and in that sense I hope you won't bash that aspect, with the Son being the First Officer aboard ship. I honestly haven't seen it done before, at least not in ST fanfiction. If it has, then well... guess this is my take/ spin/ what have you on it. I find the dynamic to be quite intriguing, and want to tell that particular story. Got some pretty fun ideas in mind for it too which I think you'll enjoy.

    Whoa, this note is longer then I thought it would be. LOL

    I cast the majority of the characters already, just for fun.

    Mandy Patinkin as: "Capt. Charles Gibson." -CO.
    Jensen Ackles as: "Lt. Cmdr. Ryan Gibson." -XO.
    Chris Rock as: "Lt. Cmdr. James "Jim" Radcliffe." -Chief Engineer.
    Devon Aoki as: "Lt. T'Lea." (Vulcan). -Science Officer.
    Kate Beckinsale as: "Lt. Tara Renn" (Bajoran) -Tactical Officer/ Security Cheif.
    Yvonne Strahovski as: "Dr. (Cmdr.) Susana Song." -Specialist/ 2nd Medical Officer.
    Hugh Laurie as" Dr. Malbret Hainan." (El Aurian) -Primary Medical Officer.
    Dwayne Johnson as: "Lt. Ba'lon." (Dalfian) -Ops Officer.
    Maria Mitchell as: "Cadet Ki'llan Xobe." (Xoasian) -Helm.

    Bella Thorne as: "Ensign Majel Lucas." -Astrometrics.
    Alexandria DeBerry as: "Ensign Dalia Vorrok" (Uk'Zir) -Shuttle Pilot/ Transporter chief.
    Jeremy Reiner as: "Lt. (j.g.) Evan Hawke." -Fighter Pilot.

    Morgan Freeman as: "Admiral Gary Radcliffe". -Cheif of Star Fleet Engineering at GS1.
    Sigourney Weaver as: "Fleet Admiral Amanda Headly".

    Episode 1x01: "Strangers in a Strange Land". (In progress.)
  2. surak-toc

    surak-toc Commander Red Shirt

    Apr 20, 2013
    this rocks, the premise has a massive impact, cannot wait to see this in its entirety
  3. DarKush

    DarKush Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Nov 18, 2005
    Really like the character names and new species names.
  4. Cobalt Frost

    Cobalt Frost Captain Captain

    I'll be interested to see how this develops, though every time I see the captain's name, I can't help but picture the Charles Gibson who was an ABC news anchorman. Also interested to see what this Pioneer-class ship looks like.
  5. Warp Rider

    Warp Rider Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    May 1, 2009
    Another Galaxy. Canada.
    Glad you like the premise, hope you enjoy the prologue when it's up. Nearly done writing it, just getting a little done each day when I get the chance. Hope this has an interesting impact too when it's all said and done. :)

    :techman: That's good to know, cause I wasn't too sure about some of them. lol I was going to post up profiles, but I think I'd rather show off these characters through the actual story instead. Find it allows for more creativity when done that way and more surprises. :)

    I'm glad you're looking forward to see the development of this story. :)
    LOL, honestly I didn't know there was a real person with that name... now this explains why my dad gave me a funny look when I told him the name. XD The reason behind the name was more so cause of Patinkin watching Charlie Chaplin on Criminal Minds, and Gibson cause I didn't want to use "Gideon" cause he was called that on CM. lol And Gibson sounded like an interesting last name I haven't given a character before and kind of stuck in my head. It was also pretty easy to remember to be honest. lol

    About the ship... I'll just say for now, it's a little bit bigger then the Galaxy. :3
  6. Warp Rider

    Warp Rider Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    May 1, 2009
    Another Galaxy. Canada.
    P I O N E E R

    Episode 1X01:
    "Strangers in a Strange Land


    Between AQ and Bajorn Borders, ten light years away form GQ Wormhole.
    Xoasys System.
    STARDATE: 65701.77 (Jan. 22Nd).

    Hanging in the vacuum of the black covered in pinholes of light and smokey, splotches of brightly coloured nebulae, hung the first deep space, Federation outpost – Gama Station One. Right in that empty space between the Alpha Quadrant and Bajoran borders it orbited within a system of six planets and two suns. The home system of the Xoasians about ten light years from the Wormhole that allowed ships to travel from the Alpha to the Gama Quadrants.

    After the Dominion war and the events of 2387, Starfleet found themselves in a bit of lull due to the division in the remains of the Romulan Star Empire. Factions joined up with the Federation – while others – branched into a brigade of pirates and terrorists. Exploration went mainly on the back burner for a time, until thing had quieted down. Now though, with the permission and aid of the Xoasians, Starfleet was able to erect a space station in a fairly friendly, but unknown sector of space. Negotiations with the blue skinned, four-armed, peaceful and warm achieved race, proved beneficial to both parties.

    The Federation gained a new ally, while the Xoasians gained faster warp technology and protection from outside threats. Even some have joined up with Starfleet, with quite a few doing Non-commissioned duties aboard vessels. Some enrolled into classes aboard Gama Station One, with research teams and facilities being stationed upon the Xoasys home planet and colony worlds, in a kind of exchange program.

    Xoasians unique, natural abilities have come to make them valuable pilots and assets to the Federation Fleet, over a short period of time. They also seemed to have a desire for exploration of the unknown just like all races within the United Federation of Planets. Granted their ritualistic society was quite different and sometimes difficult to understand; exploration became the unifying goal between the Federation and Xoasys in the end. A singular point to a well grounded beginning and understanding as it were.

    Outer-docking ring, corridor.

    Briskly walking through the corridor of the third, outer docking ring pod, was a late twenty-something, dark haired man in a blue, science division Starfleet jacket and black pants. Around the collar and down the front came a thin black line, revealed how one would fasten such a jacket. The line intersected a thicker one that went around the shoulders. Two golden pips reflected brightly, on the thicker trim-line on the right side. His comm-badge, a solid silver Starfleet Delta Chevron, outlined in gold with a 23rd Century, gold command star in the center.

    Coming to junction port of a Jeffery's tube, the young officer stopped then gave a quick look down either end of the corridor. The coast was clear from the looks of it, and he didn't hear anyone's foot steps approaching either. Adjusting the strap of his equipment box over his right shoulder, the young officer grabbed the metallic hatch-grips, turned them. It let out a subtle, low hiss of the pressure-seal being released. He checked again to make sure he was alone before opening it, and crawling into the Jeffery's tube, closing the hatch behind him.

    GS1: Transporter Room 3.

    Looking at his own reflection, Gary Radcliffe felt the cold vacuum of space through the protective layers of the force fielded, transparent aluminium window. His old, weary eyes stared back at him while he studied features. The almost snow white, short cropped haircut he sported matched the stumble upon his chin, complementing the ageing, brown skinned face. At least, that's what Gary believed. Though he was not looking to impress anyone in particular today, instead he was here to stand with a long time friend from way back.

    Honestly he thought he would of have been more nervous then he was at this moment. Just that the thought of where his best friend was going, especially under the circumstances, allowed him to keep those emotions in check. He would need a friend right now and more then likely, down the road from this day forward. Which Gary was happy to be; because being out in the Gama Quadrant, cut off from Command, with only this base and the very few who were stationed here... it was no going to be easy. It wouldn't be for anyone, though he had seen some make the adjustment a lot easier then others. Usually those officers were the younger ones, but a few veteran Captains did surprise him.

    Possibly even Charles would surprise him, in fact he counted on it when he arrived aboard the station.

    Raising his right hand, Gary gently rubbed with the tips of his fingers against five, shiny pips. They represented his rank of Admiral, a rank he still felt undeserving of. It was when he realized the mission and who was being asked to take on such a long assignment, that Gary finally accepted it. Somehow there had to be a way for him to use this promotion to his advantage, at least to Charles'.

    “Admiral,” said a voice from behind Gary. He turned to a very tall, yellow jacketed Benzite at the transport control console, and gave a nod for him to continue. “Captain Gibson is ready to beam up, sir.”

    “Good,” said Admiral Radcliffe, tucking down the bottom of his red jacket. They never ever did fit right, but he was sure it was just in his mind this time. The weight of the higher rank was getting to him, he assumed, and was never one to pull rank. It just wasn't him.

    Standing off to the right of the transporter console, Gary casually held his hands behind his back, then turned to the Benzite, Transporter Chief. “Energize.”

    The blue skinned Benzite went to work typing on the console, without his breather, connected to his chest getting in the way of his vision. The cold smoke pouring out of it vanished fast enough for him to see what he was doing as he typed expertly into the panels and then slid three fingers upward upon the pitch black glass, light it up with three yellow-sectional bars.

    A moment later the familiar hum increased in a volume slightly, and shortly following that the blue steams of light shot up from the yellow-orange transporter pad. Disappearing into the top of the transporter, the remaining blue particles of energy materialized the solid form of Captain Charles Gibson. He appeared decked out in a the red complete red jacket and black pants, like Gary's, but with only four pips across the somewhat thicker trim across the shoulders. The middle aged Starfleet Captain took a look around the dark, dimly lit and quite large trasnporter room. Giving the back of his head a scratch, he could feel the slight balding spot near the back of his short, dark brown bair.

    “Permission to come aboard, Admiral?” asked Charles, as he gave a soft grin to his oldest and really, only friend in the fleet.

    Gary returned the grin and gave the Chief a nod to leave his station. “Granted.”

    The middle-aged Captain stepped down from the now dimmed transporter pad and walked on up to the Admiral. He offered his hand and felt Gary's firm grip take it, giving it a good shake as well. Charles jumped a bit as Gary gave him a quick tap in the gut after the Chief left.

    “I see retirement's been good to you, Charlie boy,” jibed the older Admiral.

    Laughing it off, Charles shook while looking down at himself, “Yeah, it has indeed. The uniform's a little more snug then it used to be. But...”

    “Feels good to be back in it, huh?”

    “You could say that,” replied Gibson as they both left the transporter room and entered into the brightly light, light grey corridors that were lined with beige along the walls. Maroon carpets lined the floors and black computer-panels lined along the top section on one side of the corridor. “Nice place, nicer then being put on that cramped ship all the way here.”

    “Didn't you take the wormhole?” asked Radcliffe with a puzzled expression dropping over his face.

    “Yeah, to get into the Quadrant,” Charles answered, “It was the rest of the way here. I think they deliberately took the lowest warp speed possible. Or at least the bumpiest course.” He gently rubbed the back of his neck, tilting it to one side to work a kink out.

    “It wasn't a smooth ride, I can tell you much.”

    “Well you won't have to worry about that now, Charlie boy,” said Gary as they turned down another corridor and headed for the turbolift at the end. “All the comforts of home are waiting for you. But first...”

    A twisting and turning sensation formed in the older and slightly taller Admiral's stomach. They both knew what he was going to say, but hoped he would just move onto another subject. Or maybe he would if he brought it up like he knew was going to. Though the opportunity to finally get some answers as to why Charles decided to come out of retirement all of the sudden. There was real reason behind it and he knew it would bother him if he didn't find out what it was. Especially before he left for the uncharted regions of the Gama Quadrant. Gary would of liked to have gone with him, but his recent promotion gave him the duties of Chief of Starfleet Engineering aboard GS1. Preventing him from taking any deep space exploration missions at all.

    “How is she?” asked Charles, quickly glancing over to see what reaction he was going to get.

    “The same, Charles.”

    Captain Gibson nodded and looked down at the floor for a second then back towards the beige, enclosed turbolift doors. He knew that whenever he would call him by his full first name instead o the nickname he gave him at the academy all those years ago, he was meaning business. Deciding to let it go he watches the side lights go from down-to-up, to right-to-left on the wall of the lift. The elevator had switched directions and Gibson figured they were close, but he hoped this conversation wouldn't stay awkward all the way there. “I was just curious, Admiral,” Charles replied sombrely, “Besides, she asked me here.”

    “Yes, but why did you agree to it?” Radcliffe questioned with a furrowed brow, then turned and gave his middle-aged friend an arched eyebrow. “You never gave into her requests before... what's changed?”

    “People change over time,” said Charles trying to keep things light, fearing he'd mention the other thing that he know puzzled his almost, white haired superior officer and friend.

    “Hmm, mmhmph.”

    “What, Gary?”

    “Oh I didn't say anything,” Gary replied aloofly, not making eye contact with his younger subordinate. Though somehow he know it was only a matter of time before he caved in, all he had to do was let him think it over.

    Charles thought it over, wondering if he should give him the full answer or just some little white lie. In the end as the turbolift doors whooshed open, Charles decided on what to say. His friend was here, by his side, going to see the one person he was dreading to see again after all this time. At least he thought it was dread... though it would of been butterflies... Gibson did consider the possibility that it was something else, that maybe he did miss her—wanted her back. He just wasn't here for that though, and with his mission Charles was to take command on, it would make things difficult it not impossible for a rekindling of the past. Though there was one request he knew he'd get the okay to, and maybe fix or smooth some things over with.

    “I'm doing this to mend some bridges...,” he muttered, barely audible enough for Gary to hear. Then he turned to his older friend, “Is that what you really wanted to ask?”

    Gary looked back at him, “It's commendable that you want to fix some past mistakes. We all do. There is always something we regret and wish we could take back.”

    He took a brief pause to muddle over saying the other thing on his mind but in the end decided to be out with it, “And then there is the fact we're not that far from Dominion territory.”

    “Your point?” asked Charles a little more sternly then he would of prefered, while turning away as he too felt the twisting in his stomach.

    It wasn't something he wanted to remember or even at least discuss. Gibson knew where they were, he knew where he was heading and it was not anywhere close to that part of space from the mission brief he read on the way here. Starfleet Command left his course up to him, since he was being sent out to explore a large area that Starfleet has never been. Still, bringing that up made him a little curious as to why now, after all this time would he would mention about Dominion space.

    Gary turned to his friend once more and gave a small, weary smile mixed with pity.

    “Charles,” began Admiral Radcliffe, “I don't mean to push. I don't mean to pull rank, you know I'm not like that. Never been that way either.. I just always wanted to be an Engineer. But....” He then sighed heavily, “If you don't want to tell me why you're really taking on this assignment, then don't. But I am still going to be a friend. In this place you'll need at least one.”

    “It's that bad?” Gibson wondered aloud with surprise.

    “I'll just say you weren't Amanda's first pick,” Gary answered, “To be honest, I don't know what changed.”

    “Maybe...,” Charles murmured as he consider a possibility that Amanda wanted to patch things up. Or at least, wanted to see him.


    “Never mind, Gary...,” replied Gibson, then he added solemnly, “Sometimes I just over think things too much.”

    “Hmmmm...,” the Admiral murmured. Gary had an idea of what his friend was probably thinking, though he also knew how stubborn and pigheaded they both could be. Just that he also knew better then to but in on something that clearly wasn't his business. Although the older Officer did hope that maybe someday they would ease up and meet one another halfway down the road. Like another fellow, Starfleet Officer was quoted saying: “There are always... possibilities.”

    GSI: Outer-docking ring Corridor.

    Sometime later a tall and slender, Melanin skinned, European man in a golden jacketed, security uniform was making his rounds on the docking ring. It was yet another boring day on the job for Ensign Silva as he yawned on yet, his third patrol this morning. He hated the early shift, but at least he hoped there wouldn't be another shift waiting for him when all was said and done for the day. Unlike last week with that supposed call in at the last minute. He had had a gold pressed latinum for every time somehow called in sick, he'd be richer then a some of the Ferangi he had dealt with once or twice.

    Just as he made it around the rounded corner of the corridor, a Jeffery's tube hatch opened in the somewhat darkened, junction area. Cautiously, Ensign Silva sauntered over to the wall and quietly peeked around. He stood there, hidden from view as the blue uniformed Lieutenant crawled out of the Jeffery's tube.

    Silva snapped back to reality, realizing that him, a security officer was hiding when he should just move on by. Though he was positive there were no repairs scheduled for today, and it was peculiar for a science or medical officer to be the Jeffery's tube. Watching curiously, Silva noticed the case this dark, pale skinned Lieutenant had with him was a tool box. Even the tricorder on his hip wasn't medical or science issue either. Something was obviously up with this and that's when he felt his palms began to sweat a little.

    Resting a shaky hand upon the smooth, curved, black and silver grip of his Phaser, he nervously stepped out of hiding. Clearing his throat, the young, Melanin secuirty officer spoke up, “Excuse me, Lieutenant. What are you doing in that Jeffery's tube?”

    The Lieutenant ignored him and continued on with his work, opening up a panel to reveal a power relay conduit. Quickly the blue uniformed officer began to type on the control panel, constant beeping echoed in the corridor as he disengaged safety locks, diverted excess power flow and by passed sensor scans. Grabbing a small, flat, palm sized device from the grey, rectangular toolbox, the Lieutenant then slapped it onto a vacant part of the panel. Pressing a few buttons on it sent an electrical surge through the relay's security grid which in turn shorted it.

    “Hey!” exclaimed Ensign Silva as he marched on over, pulling out his Phaser as he got closer, “What the heck are you doi-AGH!”

    The pseudo science officer moved like lightening with incredible fluidity as he grabbed a hold of the security officer's wrist. In one quick motion he broke it, disarmed him of his weapon and smashed the young man's head into the bulkhead. The impact left a small blood stain dripping to the floor next to the now unconscious body. He then knelled down next to the body and coldly, lifeless looked it over before placing a couple fingers upon the young man's neck. After checking for a pulse and finding one he then went back to work on the open conduit.

    Quickly unscrewing and dislodging a cable that he had switched off, he then turned back to the fallen Ensign. An interesting idea slowly began to form, or possibly programing, not even he knew for sure. Though indeed it would serves his purposes and take care of two problems and possibly help the next phase of the plan move a lot quicker. In turn it would force him to move a lot faster as well, but he was prepared for it. The original plan was effective enough as it was, but this gave an even bigger advantage, even though it would also draw more attention.

    Kneeling down next to his toolbox again, the Lieutenant opened it and retried a twenty centimeter, silver and bronze sonic driver.

    GSI: Admiral Headly's Office.

    Fleet Admiral Amanda Headly sat behind her desk with her legs crossed, elbows upon the arms rests and her fingers somewhat intertwined together. Resting her chin against them she waited, patiently for the Turbolift to finally arrive at the far end side of the rather large office. It even had a massive window to one side, opposite of her on the upper level secluded by dark, wooden railing. It was kind of lounge area, were as around her desk, there were standard, black leather chairs. Definitely designed for business she thought and kind of fitting possibly. Up there you could relax and stare at the stars, but down there you got down to business.

    Brushing her curly, shoulder length brown hair away form her face, she then gently turned the ring around her left hand's middle finger. Amanda stared at it for a long time as her thoughts wandered back into the past. There the good memories mixed in with the bad and in the end it was the bad ones that became the more prominent in the mind's eye. Slowly Admiral Headly's gaze came down upon the shiny, dark finish of her black and wooden trimmed desk, as she saw her fair reflection looking back at her. Those sad green eyes staring back gradually turned to anger she followed the subtle traces of wrinkling upon her face. She was not ugly by any sense of the word, but age wasn't exactly too kind to her either, though really the cause she know was rooted in the stress she's been through most of her life. There were even times where Headly wondered how she even held on, but really, that answer was simple. The simple fact was that there was no other choice, she had to keep it together. Even now at this very moment there was no ifs, ands or buts about it.

    As the turbolift finally stopped at the far end of the dim, ambient office level; Amanda pulled down her red jacket and checked her bared pips to make sure they were on straight. They were. Then she resumed her original posture, cleared her throat and calmed herself down enough to put on a slightly stern expression.

    The doors soon slid apart with a whoosh, shining the bright turbolift lighting like column of sunlight into the darker office. Captain Gibson walked on in first with Admiral Radcliffe right behind him then beside him as they made their way over to Headly's desk. Charles noticed the stern look upon her face and instead of doing the same, he gave a small, but genuinely warm smile. Even Radcliffe gave a courteously smile as well.

    Amanda smiled and nodded to Gary but to Charles, it looked a little forced, in fact it was obvious. Though deep down she swore she felt her heart skip a beat, only to refocus her mind on the meeting instead. This was business and nothing more, just the usual reporting in to the CO in charge, and get your assignment sort of meetings. Just that in this case, there was indeed a little more to it to discuss before dismissing the the Captain.

    “Have a seat gentleman,” said Headly a little more forcefully then she had intended, but at least she could get away with it.

    “Admiral,” both Charles and Gary said and then took their respective seats on the other side of the desk.

    Charles leaned back and crossed his legs, where as Gary sat a little more relaxed and took a deep breath. Gary was a little curious on how calm his younger friend was coming off, at least it was a hell of an act he thought. Secretly he hoped they'd work things out calmly and civilly, but that could be a little too much to ask for in the long run. Realistically it was only a matter of time before it went from argument to screaming match. Ranks be damned.

    GS1: Outer-docking ring corridor.

    The Lieutenant typed into the well panel and turned on the power conduit relay after riging a flurry of cables, wires and circuits. Everything had been rewired and a primary, see-through cable had been wrapped around the unconscious Ensign. It glowed brightly as the plasmatic energy surged along the clear tubing and into the capacitor upon the wall.

    Quickly picking up the toolbox after putting everything he used away, he grabbed the phaser and pulled out his tricorder to take a few scans. Everything was looking normal on his screen and he punched in a few commands into the hand-held device. Closing it up and holstering it, the pale skinned Lieutenant stepped over the knocked out security officer as he switched off the weapon and tucked it away in his toolbox. Looking back once more the nonchalant science officer waited until the Ensign started to regain consciousness and then disappeared around the corridor.

    Shaking his head, Ensign Silva tried to break free of the splitting headache he was feeling. It honestly reminded him of the worst hangover he had a few months back. Rubbing the back of his head he forced himself to open his eyes and focus them. Groggy was an understatement with how he feeling now, and then he noticed the blood trickling down the side of his face. Pressing a few fingers to it and then prying them off to look at the red liquid coating and sliding down them. Blinking a few times he was able to see it a little more clearly and it began to freak him out a little. Unfortunately he felt the weight of something holding him down while trying to get up. Looking at himself, the young Ensign could see a large array of wires and glowing, charged cable around him. Following it all the way up to the open wall panel freaked him out even more.

    Unsure of how to unconnect himself he figured calling for assistance would be the best solution. Taking in deep breathes the young Ensign security officer brought a small sense of calm to his erratic mind. Then he looked over at his comm-badge on the left side of his jacket and tapped it, activating the comm-chirp.

    GS1: Fleet Admiral Headly's Office.

    “You will be in this section here,” stated Headly on the Stellar-graphic map behind her desk on the large, wall monitor. The forty-eight year old Fleet Admiral pointed to a large, vacant space between the Alpha Quadr and Bajoran borders. “This is the area on unexplored space the mission is designated on. Plenty of room to discover new worlds, lifeforms and civilizations. Though I can't guarantee you won't run into hostiles while out there...”

    “When can we ever?” Gary said as a matter of fact, and give his friend beside him a tiny bit of a chuckle.

    “I know, we all take that risk when taking on these assignments...,” sighed Charles, “Comes with putting on the uniform.”

    “So why did you accept this mission?” asked Amanda with puzzled look, and she truly was curious as to why he did. Though her theory wasn't that far off from the truth, but there was more to it. There is always more to it then that with him, he she learned one thing from their time together. There was always more then one reason for everything.

    “Why did you ask him to come out of retirement for this?” Gary inquired while staying relaxed, though honestly he felt himself tense up a bit. Even though he was an Admiral... she was this sector's Fleet Admiral. Some part of him hoped that their friendship would give him some leeway, at least a little more then Charles. It was definitely one of the benefits of being a long time friend to both of these officers.

    “Don't deviate from my question,” Headly replied sharply then turned back to Charles who looked back at her.

    Captain Gibson sat forward while staring down for a moment at his boots while he pondered on how to answer. “Like I said before... the only way I'd come out of retirement was on a mission of peaceful exploration.”

    “Yes, I remember, Captain,” answered Headly crossing her arms, waiting for the rest of his answer to finally spill out.

    “This is one them and granted I can't count on it being just about exploration all the time. There are bound to be mishaps along the way. That's life. I'll take it as they come, but... I think I have a chance to mend some bridges while I'm at it,” Charlie added as he looked his superior commanding officer in the eye for the first time today.

    “No,” she said coldly, “I can't believe you are even considering it.”

    “Oh I've thought about it for a while now, and from the reports...”

    “He's egotistical, a hot shot, no respect for his duties...-”

    “I know,” Charles said, cutting Amanda off and then continued, “I want to make him my First Officer. Give him a chance to appreciate and learn some responsibility. It could be good for him. In fact... it could be the best experience for him. Better then just keeping him here on a leash. He needs to go out out on his own to learn things the hard way. Through life experience for lack of a better term.

    “It'd be a great opportunity for him and I to get reacquainted with one another, Amanda. I need to make up for some lost time... we both do.”

    Amanda gradually slumped back in her chair and stared down upon the dark finish, although she herself was lost in thought. There really wasn't much of a reason to keep Ryan there, doing mundane assignments, staying close. He was a man now, a fully grown young man and an officer in Starfleet. She could of obviously pulled rank and just flat out said no, but then to back it up would of caused her to write a report. All that paper work just cause she didn't feel he was worthy to promote due to his actions and behaviour. Granted it would be enough and legitimately a solid reasoning, but Headly also knew that there was some logic to Charles' way of thinking too. Having to run a space station and then watch over her son as well left her even more stressed. Still her motherly instincts were more or less the main reason to keep him there.

    “Maybe...,” she began, reluctantly, “Maybe I do need to let go of some things. Let you be a father if you seriosly want the job again.”

    “I do,” Charles told her flat out, his expression unchanging and he was dead serious about it. It was there... staring right into Amanda's eyes. “But I will also be his Captain and his friend. Everything a young, brash officer needs rolled into one as best to my ability.”

    “Alright...,” Headly agreed, grabbing a PADD off to one side of the desk and began to type, “I'll put the transfer through. Do you want to promote him to Lieutenant Commander?”

    Just then outside the large, office window a small cruising, transport shuttle docked with one of the outer-ring pods. Suddenly there came a boom, followed by several small ones until finally the entire pod exploded. Pieces of of the docking-ring pod and the shuttle scattered throughout the vacuum of color and blackness, adding to the mass of pinholes that were already there, twinkling in the dark lifeless sky. The flashing shock wave filled the office window for a brief second, blinding all three officers for a moment.

    They rose up to their feet and stared out towards the destruction in shock and horror of what just happened...
  7. Cobalt Frost

    Cobalt Frost Captain Captain

    Interesting start! I'm looking forward to more. I think you mean "Gamma" rather than "gama" though. :D
  8. Warp Rider

    Warp Rider Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    May 1, 2009
    Another Galaxy. Canada.
    Glad you enjoyed the first installment. :D

    And thanks for letting me know, I'll make sure that's fixed in the next chapter, then I'll go back and fix it in this one. :techman:
  9. Jono

    Jono Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Dec 22, 2001
    DOCTOR Song...WHO does that remind me of? ;)
  10. Warp Rider

    Warp Rider Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    May 1, 2009
    Another Galaxy. Canada.
    She is a nod to River Song in name only, but not a ripoff or carbon copy. Glad someone got the reference though. :techman:

    What did you think of the prologue though? :3
  11. Warp Rider

    Warp Rider Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    May 1, 2009
    Another Galaxy. Canada.
    Episode 1X01
    "Strangers in a Strange Land"

    -Chapter 1-

    Xoasys, Xet-bey City Ruins.

    The first rays of dawn shone over the valleys upon valleys of rust-coloured rocks and old, archaic architecture of ancient, abandoned city. It was one of the oldest of the Xoasian race, spanning a thousand miles in every direction. Now only hollow, empty structures, caverns and drying wells remained. There was also tranquillity to the desolate city, that if you could quiet your mind you could have found a sense of calming or a peace of mind. Some of the Xoasians believed that you could even hear the songs of the dead within the walls if you listened carefully.

    On the hills of Transcendence as they called it, a petite. slender, four-armed, blue figure moved with such fluidity that one could call it mesmerizing. Holding twin, curved golden daggers like kunai, the female Xoasian swung her upper arms towards the sky and the her lower arms she tucked in around her waist. As she knelt her head tilted up towards the twin suns rising slowly over the mountain range. The suns reflected upon the embedded crystals along the top of her wide cheek bones as she smiled. After a moment her expression turned serious. It was a fact that she, Ki'llan Xobe took the morning ritual of waking the most seriously, believing that she should give thanks to the Deities for allowing her to be alive each and every morning. To her it was a gift that should never ever be squandered, or taken for granted.

    Unsheathing the lower daggers from their side holders, Ki'llan began to swing her arms in slow circular movements. Her upper arms turned clockwise and her inner arms turned the opposite way. As she speeds up the edges of the jewelled kunai scrapped across one another, showering bursts of sparks all around her. Gripping tighter with her thin, three fingers and thumbed hands onto the leather, brass-handles, Ki'llan began to perform a unique form of dance, making quick, circular movements with all her limbs in perfect sync.

    If any other bipedal alien tried doing some of these ritualistic movements, it'd be a chiropractor’s nightmare. It was only thanks to the unique triple jointed skeletal structure of the Xoasian people that allowed Ki'llan to do such unique turns and other odd movements. Each fluid motion meant something specific in the waking ritual.

    As she plunged all four, double edged kunai's into the rocky ground below her feet as she knelt, finishing the ritualistic morning dance of thanks, Ki'llan took a deep breath. Rising up on her reversed jointed legs, the beautiful blue skinned Xoasian sheathed her blades into the holders on around her teal, loin cloth waist and on the back of the four sea-shell armour bra. Quickly tying back her violet and green highlighted, tentacle like hair into a pony tail, Ki'llan made her way to the edge of the cliff face and stopped.

    Swinging her slender arms wide and arching her body as she tiled her head back, and slowly iris diamond-shaped, green eyes shut. Ki'llan allowed the warm dawn rays wash over her body, as if allowing the pours within her blue pigmented skin to soak it up. A genuinely big smile formed upon her human looking mouth, brandishing a full set of pearly white teeth, including a couple of fangs, one on either side of the front two teeth.

    Just as Ki'llan Xobe took a deep breath of her planet's fresh and clean air, she heard a voice behind her in the distance.

    “Ki'llan Mey! Ki'llan Mey!” shouted the voice.

    Ki'llan lowered her arms then spun on her heel to see a just as slender, male Xoasian hurrying towards her. Dressed in purple robes and golden plates around his waist, shoulders, and wrists, each one had a unique and specific number of characters or symbols on them. The markings of the Wise Messenger from what Ki'llan could see, as most of the symbols had a unique inward curve to them.

    “Ki'llan Mey,” he Messenger said as he stopped a couple feet in front of her and bowed. Looking up at Ki'llan from under the bishop shaped headdress, that was the same gold and littered with symbols as the rest of the armor, he waited for her permission to speak.

    “Yes, Messenger, what is it?” she asked curiously with lower left arm raised slightly, signalling for him to speak.

    “You...,” began the Xoasian Messenger attempting to catch his breath at the same time, “Have been chosen to go... on... a journey on one of the human vessels. Your Bas'tra has given his permission to allow you off world... Mey.”

    “Good, it's about time my Bas'tra allowed me to live,” said Ki'llan, smiling from ear-to-ear or whatever the gills on the side of her head were called. “Now I must go prepare for my journey, and Messenger.”

    “Y-yes, Ki'llan Mey?” stuttered the robed and armored Xoasian, awaiting for what she would tell him next.

    “When I got up to that floating city in the dark sky,” she paused for a moment, then continued, “Do not call me by Mey. And do not ask why.”

    “Yes, of course, Ki'llan M-ehh... Ki'llan,” he winced, catching himself in the nick of time but cringing at the thought of having to stop using her honorific title. It was just something he'd have to get used to in public at least, but he thought might as well start now, as practice makes perfect. Hopefully he wouldn't slip down the road at some point, only to incite Ki'llan Xobe's wrath upon him.

    “Good, now let's head back,” stated the female Xoasion in the skimpy armor and loin cloth as she walked passed tghe robed Messenger only to stop as a mild, bright flash shone in the sky above them. She cocked her head up towards the green hued and orange sky, to find an explosion peeking down through the clouds. Ki'llan knew where it was happening, where she looked was where the floating city was, Gamma Station One.

    As they both watched the fire dissolve into nothingness, Ki'llan took a steap foward and with her mouth agape, said, “My Sh'a'ai....”

    GS1: Galleria, Bob's Restaurant.

    The main hub of entertainment, dining of all kinds and shopping on the station buzzed busily with officers with their families, civilians and alien traders alike. In fact in around this one restaurant it was quite crowded with people lined up all the way out of the door, waiting to place their orders for take out. Though inside most of large, gunmetal grey pick-nick tables were filled to the brim. Only a few of the smaller places remained vacant.

    Sitting at one of them was a petite, Asian looking female Vulcan with shoulder-length, light brown hair and wearing a blue starfleet jacket. Across from her sat a rather large and blocky, gruff, orange skinned, bald male alien, in a yellow starfleet jacket. Both wore the Lieutenants pips, but he was in fact a Dalfian from the looks of the thick, grey quad spikes protruding from the back of his head and hands.

    Lieutenants T'Lea and Ba'lon sat amongst the noise crowd in silence as they had their lunch and looked over status report PADDs, from their respective departments of Science and Operations.

    Ba'lon was first to take a break from his 'light reading' and looked up his compatriot from under the large, rock like, uni-brow. Lifting his mug of the dark, slightly thick liquid he was drinking, he took a sip then placed it back down, thinking for a moment about if he should start a conversation. After a few moments Ba'lon just shook his head and picked up his PADD once more and bega to type with one of his three thick, stone fingers.

    “Can I help you, Lieutenant?” T'Lea asked not looking away from her own PADD.

    The brutish Dalfian was a little taken aback by her response, and hesitated as he was unsure how to respond. “No. Not really, Lieutenant,” Ba'lon finally answered, only glancing every so often to see her reaction.

    It remained unchanged as she continued to read her PADD and took another sip of her tea from her steel, starfleet emblem mug. Then still without looking, she replied in a nonchalantly, “Then why did you look in my direction?”

    “I don't know. I don't like long silences. They... disturb me greatly,” the Operations Officer answered, not looking at his fellow Science Officer.

    “It is not quiet in here, Lieutenant. Not in the least,” she told him, “Silence is what I would prefer and may in fact seek after lunch.”

    Ba'lon tried to find some way of getting out of this awkward moment, as he did not want to give his Vulcan compatriot the wrong idea. So he just let it out, “We're both going to be on a long term mission, far away from the Alpha Quadrant. Away from any kind of contact with our own people and from Starfleet Command. Doesn't it disturb you in the least, T'Lea?”

    T'Lea raised her head and cocked an eyebrow. “Disturb? Not particularly. I find the prospect of being away from the familiar to be... intriguing, and quite refreshing. Change is a part of life. It is logical that things change.” She took another sip of her tea. “It is also natural for other emotionally driven species to feel a sense of loss and fear when change occurs in one's life. So, even though I do not experience how you feel-I do, however, understand where you're coming from, Lieutenant.”

    The large, muscle bound Dalfian just grunted his acknowledgement with a hint of frustration behind it as well. Right after taking another sip of his own drink, he roughly grabbed up his PADD and begin to skim through the text again. Ba'lon tapped the back light on his PADD to increase the brightness due to the lower lighting conditions of the restaurant. Honestly he thought this place could of been lit better, but outside in the Galleria, it was brightly lit. Ba'lon wondered if it could of been an problem with the power relays, maybe he'd even give them an overhaul before leaving for his assignment. Whatever ship that ws going to be, he wasn't entirely sure. All he knew was that him and T'Lea were both set out on long term missions out into the unknown, unexplored parts of the Gamma Quadrant.

    The Gamma Quadrant... the home of the Dominion. That battle for Cardassia Prime and many deaths on both sides. It was in the past and even know he had only read about the mission, thanking his lucky stars he wasn't ever sent on front line missions. But instead having a nice, quiet posting on a starbase for that time was a blessing to him. It was a part of their genetic makeup to be a bit worried a lot of the time and most of that time was over nothing. Though Ba'lon knew and understood that every species had their own set of quirks and issues, he wished that being so far from home and the familiar would stop bothering him so much.

    He just knew he needed to calm himself down, and sadly his drink wasn't doing that. Neither was the atmosphere in this place. When looking over at his fellow officer, her emotionless, logical Vulcan exterior puzzled him to no end.

    T'Lea could sense the young, Dalfian's uneasiness. She glanced up at him for a moment and hoped that he would settle down quickly. Taking a glance out into the hallway of the Galleria, she noticed another Officer in a blue uniform jacket, come out of the docking-ring gateway hatch. The female Vulcan science officer noticed he was rather pale, and the cold, icy-blue eyes that glanced in her direction from across the Galleria, made her feel uneasy herself. There was something indeed off about this individual. She believed. In fact T'Lea even considered on checking in the docking ring after lunch, just to see if there was something amiss. Certainly no one else emerged from that section, so if he was part of a transport arrival there should of been more then just him. Unless perhaps everyone else took a different exit.

    “Curious....,” she murmured.

    “What?” asked Ba'lon, noticing that the Vulcan Science Officer was focucing upon something else. Looking in the direction she was, he too noticed some pale, humanoid Officer walking off down into the crowded Galleria. “Do you know him?”

    “No, I do not,” stated T'Lea, “I'm curious as to why he-and he alone, exited the docking ring hatch--if he were part of a compliment of new arrivals.”

    “I don't know. Maybe he just wanted to avoid someone?”


    Suddenly there came a rumbling, followed by several large booms and then everything began to shake as the booms continued, getting louder and closer. The docking ring hatch blew open sending a massive explosion and debris everywhere. Civilians and Officers were sent flying like rag dolls, explosive decompressing then sucked out a few of the people who were close by. T'Lea and Ba'lon were knocked over by the shockwave and rolled along the floor before slowly, inch-by-inch, the decompression began to drag them along. Quickly they grabbed a hold of a table that ws bolted to the floor, and held onto it for dear life.

    After a few moments that seemed to last for an eternity, the force field activated and stopped anyone else from being sucked into the dark, cold, vacuum. The Vulcan and Dalfian officers finally let go of the table and helped one another up to their feet. A wave of shock and dismay continued to soar all over the Operations Officer while looking out at the damage across the Galleria.

    T'Lea stood beside him, breathing just as heavily reeling from the sudden shock of nearly facing death. It wasn't something she was totally prepared for, even though it was logical to her that she would someday come face-to-face with her own mortality. She had no illusions that death could come at any time when out in the galaxy. It would be illogical to believe space was safe from harm, but that wasn't going to stop her from going out there to discover new life and civilizations. Not even this.

    As they both stood by watching the fire suppression system kicking in, putting out the fires as fast as they could. The vents began sucking up the residual smoke that began to accumulate in the air, thickening it with carbon-dioxide. The two alien Officers gave each other a look then began to aid in getting people out of the debris.

    “T'Lea, what about that guy you were looking at, he came out of here, didn't he?' asked Ba'lon lifting up a fallen beam off of a red jacketed officer.

    She looked over at Ba'lon and quicly put two-and-two together. “You call the medics, I'll alert security.”

    “Got it,” Ba'long said tapping his golden outlined, silver chevron comm-badge, “Medical teams to the Galleria, section thirty-four, B.”

    T'Lea then tapped hers, “Security...”

    GS1: Shooting Range.

    The room was barely lit, but the lights that were there gave off enough illumination over the target drone. A single light shone down over it from high above it. Standing a few feet away being somewhat visible by the cascading light cone, stood a tall, athletic looking woman with short, dark hair. She's dressed in only black pants, and a grey tank top, with starfleet issue, black boots. A Bajoran from the ridges across the bridge of her nose would discern, if the unique, stringed, silver earing wasn't enough indication on her right ear.

    Holding the butt of the chrome-plated Phaser rifle tightly against her shoulder, Lieutenant Tara Renn let out a deep breath. Breathing in deep once again she held it and waited for the drone to make a move—then quickly pulled the trigger. A thin, red bolt fired from the narrow, black and chrome lined tip of the barrel, sailing across the room like a speeding bullet and struck the target dead in the center. It absorbed the bolt and blinked, beeped and then disappeared into a bunch of tiny, glowing particles into nothingness. “100 Percent. Training Ended,” spoke the computer's familiar feminine voice.

    Renn lowered her weapon and switched off the power cell as she walked over towards the open gun-rack in the armoury. Putting the weapon back on the rack, she closed it up and typed in the lock code. With a subtle, quiet hiss and the sound of clamps shutting, she knew the armoury was in fact locked from the inside out. Unless one knew the key, or had a photon grenade... no one was getting in there.

    After taking a seat on a nearby bench the twenty-eight year old Bajoran, Tactical Officer, took off the boots and put on a brand new, shiner pair. The ones she had one during the training were just for that, this was to look presentable on the rest of the station. Honestly it annoyed her to no end, she'd of rather walked on out like she was, sweaty and dirty. There was no shame in it to her, after being in the Bajoran Militia against Cardassians and the like, being prettied up for everyone was the last thing on her mind. Sadly being part of Starfleet it wasn't going to be an option, at least not till she found a Commanding Officer who had some lax attitude about it.

    Renn often wondered why she left the Militia to join up with these space hoping hippies, as she called them. But it was obvious why, in fact she remembered it just then, the promise of action and adventure out in the unknown. At least that's what she was told, and believed from the get go that was a load of bull. She told herself to listen to her gut more next time. After hearing about a posting available on board a ship that's set to go out into deep space, specifically the Gamma Quadrant, she figured maybe there was chance of some combat after all.

    She put on her gold starfleet jacket that was complete, solid colour, except for the thin black line diagonally across the neck and down the right side, and the thicker one around the shoulders, holding two, solid gold, Lieutenant's pips. Quickly the female, Bajoran zipped it up and tucked it down a bit to straighten out any wrinkles there may have been. She stuffed her grey, starfleet duffle bag and swung it over her right shoulder before heading for the door.

    Stopping at it, she gave one last look around and said, “Here's to adventure.” Then with a tap of a control button, the lights lowered until they were off. The doors whooshed open with a whisper, the light outside covered one side of her in shadow. Then as she left the doors slide closed and blackened out the entire shooting range.

    GS1: Corridor.

    Lieutenant Tara Renn briskly made her way around the curved, enclosed, beige and maroon corridor, lined with a thick black strip on either side. Computer interfaces she figured, but honestly she did not need to use them to find her way back. Knowing this station inside and out was one of the first things she did during her trip here and her first few days getting acquainted with everything. She even made sure to meet with Admiral Headly personally soon as she stepped off the transporter pad.

    Suddenly the whole thing began to rumble and shake, the red alert lights blinked to life, and the claxon sounded throughout the corridor. Catching herself against the side of the wall, she pressed a hand against the computer interface, lighting it up with an array of buttons and readout screen. “Computer, waht the hell is going on?”

    “An explosion occurred on Outer Docking Ring Pod Beta,” replied the computer in it's nonchalant, emotionless voice.

    “Great...,” muttered Renn, annoyed and worried all at once. “How bad is it?”

    “Extensive damage. -Warning. Debris incoming.”

    “What??” Renn shouted letting go f the panel and made a made dash down the corridor, hoping to outrun the incoming pieces of debris whatever it might be.

    Reaching a windowed section of the corridor, the Bajoran Tactical Officer froze in her tracks as she noticed something in the corner of her eye. Hesitantly, she turned to look and her eyes became wide with fear as she witnessed a large, burning piece of the docking ring flew and crashed into the corridor window!
  12. Warp Rider

    Warp Rider Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    May 1, 2009
    Another Galaxy. Canada.
    Just wanted to mention that Chapter 2 is coming, recently began writing on it though I'm not sure when it'll be up yet; but I haven't stopped working on this. So just hang in there, it's coming. :3
  13. Warp Rider

    Warp Rider Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    May 1, 2009
    Another Galaxy. Canada.
    Episode 1X01:
    "Strangers in a Strange Land"

    -Chapter 2-

    Xoasys System: GAMMA STATION ONE Orbit.
    A couple hours later...

    Worker and Repair pods went to work on dislodging debris, mending what could be mended and even cleaning out the remaining dead bodies that were either fused or had been trapped in breached bulkheads. The whole section was littered with them, but not all of them were intact. Most of the crew wished these pods could of been controlled from remote instead of being manually operated. Most of them could keep it together, but for the few that didn't... a lot of sick bags were used up in those pods. Even the clean air recyclers couldn't get rid of the smell fast enough, although could anyone blame them? Who wants to remoe partially burned, torn apart or blown up bodies from scorched wreckage for hours?

    A few smaller Federation vessels ranging from Centaur, to Steamrunner and even Akira class, followed by a larger Excelsior refit class starship warp in from out of distance, large flashes of light. Casually taking up positions around the station they begin taking up positions around the station in a geostationary orbit.

    Only after what had happened, all ships inbound for Gamma Station One were sent a message to orbit the station and beam aboard, rather then dock with the other pods until the security matter was resolved.

    GS1: Admiral Headly's Office.

    Watching from her large window on the upper lounge area of her office, looking out towards the destroyed docking ring, stood the forty-eight year old Fleet Admiral with arms folded in front of her. She watched with a furrowed brow and looked on with an expression of concern washed over her face. Headly was already anxious about seeing Charles again after all these years and now, this had happened. Someone either planted a bomb or rigged the power relays to explode, or crashed into it with a ship full of cobalt explosives. Either way, that report would be coming in soon at least she hoped it would so that the next phase of the investigation could get started.

    Already the lead Headly assumed they had was missing. That pale skinned, brown haired Officer in the blue uniform was gone, into hiding. Thankfully the transporter logs were checked and no one beamed off or taken a shuttle down since the lock down. But they could of been altered and it one person could cause this much damage, why wouldn't they be able to hack computer records on a transporter?

    Admiral Amanda Headly felt even more crossed now, wondering why one of their own, if this person was in fact Starfleet, would do such a thing. Deep down the near middle-aged Admiral hoped that this in fact the work of another faction. That's all they need a internal investigation on her hands, and this mission to send out the newest, advanced ship out into the unknown was already enough stress. Even though Headly knew it was going to be commanded by someone she trusted and somehow still had a tiny ounce of it left in him.

    Maybe it was the knowledge that her only child would be out there in the dangerous parts of unknown space too that was really bothering her. Heck it must of been really on her mind, otherwise she would of stopped herself from biting her thumbnail a lot sooner then she did. Finally catching herself, Amanda shook off the notion of concern as best she could and refocused on the current situation. The launch would have to wait to later, much later. At least until she and the rest of the command staff could figure out what was going on and put a stop to it.

    GS1: Sickbay.

    Casualties lined the rows of single, grey and maroon padded medical beds. A little more then half were covered over by maroon sheets with the white, Federation of Planets logo in the center. The ones that were not covered, held those were not as badly injured. Unfortunately for them they had to be intermixed with those who were dead or dying due to lack of space in the morgue. Those who were not so badly hurt were taken care of by the on duty Nurses, while at the moment, only a few Doctor's were on duty, with one staying in the main infirmary in particular...

    Doctor Susana Song felt her heart sink at the thought that the morgue had been filled to the brim already. The five-foot-seven physician with flowing, long, blond hair made her rounds, checking the bed monitors along the walls. PADD in hand, Doctor Song began to type in which patients to put on the deceased list to hand over to Admiral Headly later. It was taking everything she had to keep a level head and a straight face. She knew there would be days like this, just not this soon and not this fast but still, the twenty-nine year old, Australian physician continued to perform her duty as the chief medical officer on duty.

    After finishing her rounds of bed checking, Susana came back to her small, windowed office space in the far end of the room. Walking around the black and brown lined desk, she slumped down into her chair. A rather normal sized, blue but comfortably cushioned chair at least, where you could put your feet up and relax on a lazy day. Just not this one. Susana just knew she needed to be alone for a moment and gather he thoughts and composure before heading back out there into the fray of death, and the barely alive.

    With a deep breath, Doctor Song leaned back in her comfy chair and pulled her dark, blue lab coat around her even tighter. Then she shut her eyes slowly and attempted to push everything out of her mind, to think of nothing at all for the next five minutes.

    Then suddenly there came a knock outside her office that awoke her with a start. Looking up towards the open doorway of her office cubical, she noticed a middle-aged, dark haired man in a red starfleet uniform jacket.

    “Yes, can I help you?” she asked, quickly straightening up in her seat as she gathered up her PADDs, piled and cluttered upon her desk.

    “Doctor Song, I'm Captain Gibson,” he said, then pointed to one of the empty, smaller, grey cushioned chairs, “May I?”

    “Please,” she answered with a nod to the chair.

    “Thanks,” Charles said while sitting down. He honestly didn't like being in the Doctor's office, even though this wasn't for a check up or anything of that nature. He still felt a little uncomfortable, but hoped he was hiding his uneasiness well enough.

    “So what can I help you with, Captain?” asked Susana, placing her PADD down upon the rest of hte clutter, folding her hands on top of it.

    “I'm here to let know you that you'll be part of my medical staff, as one of the chief medical officers aboard my ship after this investigation is over,” stated Charles in a calm and collected, easy going manner.

    “I was told my transfer request was put through, wasn't expecting the Captain to show up to let me know in person though,” Susana said a little surprised, “Wait... I'd be one of the Chief Medical officers?”

    “It's a big ship,” said Captain Gibson with a hint of a smile a bit of a chuckle in his voice.

    “So I've been told. I've seen the diagrams but they hardly do it justice compared to seeing the vessel itself, in person,” he added, and then looked off as if through the young Doctor as he continued to verbalize his thoughts. “There's no feeling like that that compares to seeing that ship that you can call your own. It's like meeting that special someone you know... you'll have a long connection with. Will stay with through thick and thin.”

    Susana just grinned while holding back a small chuckle, “I see. I suppose, just like me and most other professionals. We're married to our work just like Captains are married to their ships so-to-speak.”

    “You could say that,” Charles said, nodding as he brought himself back to reality, adjusting himself in the chair, “Comes with the life in the service. So how are you holding up?”

    With a sigh, Susana wasn't sure how to answer that, then leaned back in her chair once more shoving her hands into the pockets of her long, dark blue lab coat. “I don't really down... I mean I know this comes with the life of a Starfleet Officer. And as a doctor you're bound to lose patients but...”

    “You just never thought it would of happened quite like this?”

    “No. Not from a bombing,” said Doctor Song solemnly, slightly shaking her head 'no'.

    “We're not totally convinced it was a bomb. But we do have people looking into it. The possibility is still there though.” stated Charles, heavily sighing trying to figure out what to say next. Sadly nothing had come to his mind, nothing would make it any better at least. “I wish I could tell you it was an accident... but, it is very possible it was deliberate. And like you... it does scare the hell out of me. But we can't let it control our lives. We can't live in fear. Otherwise...,” he stopped and thought about what he just said for a moment as a realization came over him, “we're not living at all.”

    Susana nodded, and she understood that he knew how she was feeling, but when he said that part of her had a gut feeling there was more behind his answer then he was letting on. “I understand, Captain Gibson.” With that she leaned back in her chair and began to stand, “If I can be of any assistance, let me know, sir. For now I will be finishing up my duties till the day night shift comes in... then it's off to packing my things.”

    She offered a genuine smile that Gibson returned as he stood and they shook hands.

    “Welcome aboard,” he said.

    “Thank you, Captain,” replied Doctor Song in her elegant, Australian accent.

    GS1: Outside Docking-Ring Pod Beta.

    Ba'lon felt weightless as he floated along through the debris field made from the explosion, with only a few inches of fabric, plasteel and transparent aluminium. He wasn't sure what he loathed more, the tiny space between him and oblivion or the feeling of a being in such a confining space. Alas the Dalfian wasn't one of those species who didn't need air, nor could breathe in space.

    The only sound he could hear was the sound of his own breathing inside his helmet. So decided to try and focus on that, to keep his mind off of everything else that was distracting, other then his duties. Zero-G training was never his strong suit, and apparently it was problem for other Dalfians too, not just him. That did kind of give him some comfort that he wasn't alone. At least out here, hanging upside down in a field od debris and damaged bodies, he was certainly not alone. Other Starfleet Officers floated on jet packs along with him. Each in their own, grey-white space suit, lined with their division colors, and with the unique, Starfleet helmet and computer screens on their left or right forearms and legs.

    Raising his tricorder up to the section he was scanning, Ba'lon typed into it as best as he could with those thick gloves covering his thick, stone-like fingers. He looked at the read the following read outs and wasn't sure if he was reading it right, so he did another scan. Ba'lon furrowed his uni-brow, then gently pushed off a beam that was sticking out at him to go up to the next level, instead of firing the thruster-pack when he didn't need to. “What the...?”

    “What is it Lieutenant?” asked T'Lea, the Vulcan Science Officer floating down beside Ba'lon, gently holding onto the beam he just used to lift himself up.

    “If I'm reading this right... our pasty friend overloaded the main power relay, and bypassed the sensor grid... by tapping in through the secondary maintenance diagnostic subroutine module....”

    “He seems to have great knowledge of our systems,” stated the Female Vulcan Officer as she double checked with her tricorder. She then tapped her com-button, “Lieutenant T'Lea to Admiral Radcliffe.”

    “Radcliffe, go ahead” came Gary's voice through the inner helmet speaker.

    “Admiral, we have determined how the saboteur has managed to destroy the Docking Pod. I'm sending you the file as we speak over the d-link transfer beam. I recommend sealing off all Jefferies Tubes to the other pods as a starting precaution, sir,” T'Lea said, typing in the commands to send the information over the d-link beam via her tricorder.

    Ba'lon hit his com-button as well and joined in on the conversation, “Admiral, Lieutenant Ba'lon here. Recommend placing secuirty at every junction point and panel that'd give him access to the main power systems and conduit relays. The Mug'tat may try to go after something a lot bigger then the pod next time if given the chance, sir.”

    “Like the C.N.C....,” mentioned Gary, sombrely, “Wouldn't discount it as a possible target.” The Admiral paused for a moment, then continued, “Lieutenant T'Lea.”


    “I want you to go to the C.N.C. Get on the scanners and see waht you can find... maybe if he's accessing a conduit or relay panel, we can at least know ahead of time. Maybe even find out if there are any life forms around a area with a power relay panel at least.”

    “Could work, Admiral,” interrupted Ba'lon, “He'd have to be alone in order to do this kind of tampering.”

    The two Lieutenants gave one another a look and then waited for the Admiral's reply.

    “Maybe. Still, it's a good lead until Security can locate him. Just hope he isn't a shape changer... anyways, Radcliffe out.”

    Ba'long and T'Lea gave each other another look and a subtle nod as the petite Vulcan floated on up after activating her thruster pack, leaving Ba'lon to continue alone. Honestly he felt right back to where he started on this assignment. Focusing on the breathing once more, he forced himself to calm his nerves down, then continued on with his work.

    GS1: Jefferies Tube 47.

    Smoke filled Lieutenant Tara Renn's nostrils and intense heat came at her from the rear while she lied on the metal grating of the Jefferies Tube. Forcing her eyes open into the very dark, but dimly lit tube she looked around. Taking in a deep breath, the twenty-eight year old Tactical Officer felt a sharp pain and began to hack and cough. How long had she been unconscious for, she wondered, as her lungs were obviously filled with smoke from the feel of it. Right now she wasn't sure if managing to jump into the Jefferies tube just before that huge chunk of debris collided with the corridor window.

    A moment later she swore she heard the sound of air seeing out. That's all she needed, an hull breach to make things worse. Unfortunately checking for one was not something she could do from this position, but sadly neither was turning around.

    Forcing herself up to her hands and knees, she started to shuffle along, dragging her duffel bag along with her. Gripping the strap she felt it tug on her and then noticed the sharp pain on her side, a couple ribs must of been broken... well it was better then losing her life. Renn just prayed that there wasn't any internal bleeding at the very least. Adjusting the bag to relieve the pressure on her injured side, the Bajoran Tactical Officer continued on her way through the Jefferies tube.

    Scratched, battered and bleeding a little from the cuts she could see on her hands and knees, the young woman gritted her teeth and fought through the pain. Somehow using it to her advantage to keep herself awake, to push onward and to not stop. Thanking her lucky stars about memorizing the station inside and out yet again. If she could reach the junction there could very well be a chance for her to reach the Jefferies tube to the medical level, maybe. The smoke must of been getting thicker, or the blood loss was greater then she thought. Although a concussion was probably the safer bet, the cause of memory problems at the moment.

    “Come on Lieutenant, pull yourself together. You can make it!” Renn encouraged herself ove rand over, quietly, through her teeth.

    The flickering lights certainly were not helping much with her already, smokey and slightly blurry vision. Every couple of shuffles she felt ahead of her with her hands as best she could to make sure there was nothing in the way. Doing so she cursed under her breath as she felt this was slowing her down, but all she needed was to crawl into something hot, sharp, or possibly both.

    Finally reaching the end of the tube, the battered Bajoran eased her way out into the junction, planting a foot down upon the tritanium hatch on the floor, at a time. Making sure there was no dizziness and that she could manage to stand, Renn stood up slowly in the center of the junction. Pulling down the lever on the side of the wall she just came out of, made the pressure door close tight. It took a few pulls to get it to fully cooperate.

    Tara Renn then slumped to the floor on her behind, knees propped up to her chest a little. It was still ahrd to breath, that sharp pain wasn't fully gone, but it was manageable for the most part. Just rather annoying though. The air wasn't that much better in the junction, so she assumed the damage must of been quite extensive. For a while she stayed there, curled up on the unction floor, rubbing her forehead, hoping that splitting headache she was starting to feel sink it, would go away in time.

    Reaching into her duffel bag, Renn pulled out her triorder and opened it up to scan the adjacent tubes around her. There had to be a way out and one of them had to be it, or at least a starting point to safety. She was more then ever, determined not to give up, since she never did before... so why would she start now?

    GS1: Storage Compartment 22.

    Huddled and crouched, the pale skinned, dark haired man in the blue Science uniform worked away. Changing out parts, adjusting them with tools that lit up with different colored lights, depending on which device he was using. Each unique tool modifying the internal equipment and circuitry of a meter long, grey tube with black accents all over it, a torpedo.

    On the floor next to him was the phaser he had taken from the Security Officer he had killed hour earlier. The casing removed and the inner-workings splayed beside him on the cold, gun-metal grey, tritanium floor. It was his next project after getting ahead on the current one, it was only a matter of time before they began a whole station search through every nook and cranny.

    A mistake on his part to be sure, leaving the docking ring pod through a main corridor. Some part of them figured he had panicked and took the fastest route possible out of there, before anyone could stumble across him, or the security officer he had wired up to the power conduit relay. Unfortunately two Officers had spotted him leaving that corridor. Because of them he'd have to modify the plans now, eliminating them would be a sub-priority if he were able to commence the the last part of this operation.

    Placing the micro-field jammer down, the pale Lieutenant took off his jacket and reached for a laser scalpel. Suddenly he though he heard something and froze, then waited for whoever or whatever it was to come in. He did not fear, his blood pressure did not rise, neither did his heart begin to beat faster. No matter who it may be, he knew that he'd be able to attack it and take it out in no time flat. There was no cause for concern just yet so the young, dark hair, icy-eyed man switched the laser scalpel on. From the tip came a two inch, red cone of heated energy with a white core in the center.

    Giving his surroundings a once over, the pale Lieutenant Science Officer started to burn into his arm, making an incision along his wrist, cauterizing the edges as he went along, eerily reflecting the flame red light in his cold, dark eyes.
  14. Warp Rider

    Warp Rider Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    May 1, 2009
    Another Galaxy. Canada.
    I've been rather busy lately with other projects, but chapter 3 is coming, in fact I am considering doing two chapters to get this caught up first, before going back to my other project. It's not easy to have 2 on the go, but it keeps me sane. :3

    So don't worry, this is still not forgotten. Hang in there my Pioneer readers! (If there is any out there. XD)
  15. Angry Fanboy

    Angry Fanboy Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Feb 15, 2012
    Angry Fanboy

    I can't emphasise enough the need to re-read what you've written before posting it - this isn't meant as a criticism as such (although obviously it is but not one that should be taken personally!:)), but just in the first few lines there are several spelling errors that need correcting.

    Even the best story will be made to look amateurish with errors such as these and detract from the overall experience - and that's not to say my own pieces have the occasional errors, I'm almost certain they do, but I feel it's important not to have too many if you know what I mean. Aim high! :)
  16. Warp Rider

    Warp Rider Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    May 1, 2009
    Another Galaxy. Canada.
    Re: Angry Fanboy

    The spelling errors have been brought to my attention once before. I have done my best to correct them in the following chapters. Sadly, I do have cataracts which doesn't make it easy to spot even with re-reading or spell check. So all i can do is try to catch what I can, but I do not expect to catch them all. But I am still doing what I can.

    Still, thank you for your comment. :3 Other then that, I am interested to find out what you people think of the characters and story so far as well. :)
  17. Warp Rider

    Warp Rider Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    May 1, 2009
    Another Galaxy. Canada.
    Episode 1X01:
    "Strangers in a Strange Land"

    -Chapter 3-

    GS1: Galleria

    Captain Charles Gibson wandered around the somewhat less busy, Galleria. It had certainly quieted down since the the bombing, even most of the shops had closed up and others had already moved on to other ports of harbour. There was still crowd of people, mainly Starfleet crew members, but very few were civilians. Either way he greeted a few of them as he went along, making sure everything was alright as best he could for the time being. Until this matter was settled he didn't have much else to do... other then greet the ones he selected to come aboard his vessel, the USS Pioneer.

    First in its class, a bit larger then the Galaxy and as long or maybe even a bit longer, then the Sovereign. It was certainly quite the ship with the Anti-Borg armour molded into the hull plating itself, rather then making it retractable. It gave the vessel a golden, majestic appearance when the light of the stars reflected off of it. Charles was even surprised to find out about this new Quantum Slipstream drive, the mark five apparently, allowing them to exceed regular warp for a limited amount of time in case of emergencies. Oh he had heard of the system itself and the prototype that was used on the USS Voyager and Aventine. From what he read this mark five drive was a lot more power efficient, as well as a little faster.

    The only thing he wasn't too keen on were the offensive systems that were installed upon it. Granted he could see the reasons for it, but twelve phaser arrays, twelve multi-function phaser turrets, about eight repeating torp turret launchers, and two heavy ones was a bit much. On top of that it had the Multi-Vector Assault mode to boot, not just saucer separation. But if that wasn't bad enough, fighters and pilots would be brought on board as well. Honestly he wondered about the whole exploration part of the mission... though the chances of him meeting Jem'Hadar vessels out that far were slim... it was still a possibility. Maybe this was Amanda's way of watching out for them both, arming a ship of exploration for bear. A little overprotective, thought Charles....

    Deep down Captain Gibson hoped they would avoid them as long as he was out there. Though he'd of been lying if he did have some second thoughts about this, but the Delta Quadrant project was already underway with other ships. He knew one classmate of his was patrolling the border as cutter. Some part of Charles was glad they never stuck him onto that kind of assignment. At least spending time out exploring the unknown was something he always wanted to do, but thanks to the events of the the Dominion War and the Destruction of Romulus those plans were put on hold... almost indefinitely. AT least until this opportunity came along, though he wondered how much of a opportunity it really was with some terrorist running a muck.

    It was all he could do just to not let it remind him of how it was back in the war.

    Charles stopped at a grey, metal, cushioned bench and took a seat. Rubbing his face and eyes his mind began to drift and sift through bad memories. Though they were more like nightmares to him, terrible, relentless, vivid images of what war had done to him. All he could tell himself was that what he had done was to to keep him and his people alive. To make it one more day, to survive to the end of the war in order to see his family again... The irony being in the end he lost them due to how he was changed. How distant and reclusive he had become while he fought off the resurgence of those bad memories. Honestly he felt there was really no excuse, but no know could know how he felt, or how he struggled unless they been through it themselves.

    Charles only hoped that this mission would somehow allow him to patch things up, at least with his son. Amanda was another story, though why she still had her ring on was something to enquire about eventually. With all this going on no wonder he never thought about it or brought it up earlier, everything occurred so fast. But was it even the same ring he gave her all those years ago, or did she remarry...?

    Either way, there was some hope after all, she did agree for him to take their son as his First Officer. Being out in the unknown with a son he barely knows, it was going to make this mission very interesting to say the least. Anyhow, Charles did find himself looking forward to the adventure with unique individuals that may become quite the family.

    A smile formed upon his face....

    GS1: Command and Control (C.N.C.)

    Lieutenant T'Lea stood at the primary science station taping away at the control panel, the usual beeping coming from every button press. Readout after readout appeared on her sensor screen while she quickly read through every result, every sweep, still nothing out of the ordinary. The twenty-eight year old looking Vulcan, believed that whoever this person was could of been cloaked somehow. Or possibly knew a way of masking his life signs somehow. If she had some of his DNA it would certainly have made her search perimeters more refined. Even for a Vulcan, this search was trying her patience.

    Ba'lon soon entered the bustling C.N.C and scanned the whole room and stopped once he spotted his Vulcan friend. Walking across the large, round, gun-metal grey Command Center over towards the science stations console pod, he ended up beside T'Lea and looked down over her shoulder. “Anything yet?”

    “I'm afraid not, Lieutenant,” she replied, nearly letting her frustration slip through while continuing yet another thorough sensor sweep.

    “Me neither,” the tall, orange, rock-skinned Dalfian sighed, “He used something to bypass the security without being detected, but I honestly haven't come across what kind of technology exactly.”

    “Unknown technology?” she questioned, turning to her taller, musclebound crew member. “That could very well be the clue we are looking for.” With that she went back to work on her console and typed in a search for unknown tech on board station, anything and everything alien. Then she stopped and turned back to her friend and said, “Thank you, Lieutenant.”

    Ba'lon nodded with a grunt of acknowledgement, “Well let's hope it's enough.”

    “If it leads to another clue, it will be most helpful,” T'Lea stated without looking up from her screen.

    Admiral Gary Radcliffe soon walked up a small three or four steps up to the main level where most of the inner circle consoles along the main railing were stationed and manned. He then walked over to the left of the round room, towards the area where the two Lieutenants were and hoped they had come up with something. As he stopped on the left of T'Lea he gave Ba'lon glance and nod then looked down at the science stations readout screens. “Anything, Lieutenants?”

    “We're looking into a lead we may have, Admiral,” answered T'Lea, as she worked away on her station.

    “And that would be...?”

    “Possible foreign tech, sir,” added Ba'lon as he leaned back against a bare section of the science stations pod, folding his arms. “Either that or he's got a miniture cloaking device.”

    “Wouldn't that be lovely?” said Admiral Radcliffe to no in particular. “A miniature cloaking device, able to hide a person... and or both--their technology from Federation sensors. Assassins, right this way...”

    “It would be unfortunate if such technology existed,” said the Vulcan Science officer. “Logic is proving to state it as so. I am not picking up anything through the scans that could be classified as... “foreign technologies.”

    She then turned to Admiral Radcliffe and continued, “We still have very few non-Starfleet races aboard, but there is no guarantee that any of them are our saboteur. He could still be very well hiding his life signs from our sensor probes.”

    Gary sat on the edge of a nearby console and folded his arms as he began to think. Rounding up all those people into the brig could cause quite a stir alright, but it would also possibly help speed up the investigation. Or at least in some way help them decipher who it was not. There was also the possibility that whoever it was would have ample time to commit their next crime, without so many people around too. Either way Admiral Radcliffe did not like the options or the possible turnouts of the decision that he was about to make.

    Shaking his head he stood up and turned towards the two Lieutenants as they waited for his next orders. “I'll speak with security about rounding them up. You just keep an eye on those sensors. Anything out of hte ordinary...”

    “Yes, Admiral,” answered T'Lea.

    “Admiral,” added Ba'lon as he went to work on one of the other science stations to help out his Vulcan friend.

    GS1: Jefferies Tube Junction 34, near Storage Compartments.

    Gripping onto each, dark, grooved bar of the ladder leading up into the next junction, Lieutenant Tara Renn found to be a struggle. The pain in her side was coming back violently every time she pulled and pushed farther along. Breathing became harder as her own body felt even heavier with every step, the weight of her duffel bag was not helping alleviate the pressure either. After passing through the open gateway, Renn stepped over to the side and stood up on the floor panel, and there she slumped down to rest and catch her breath.

    Reaching into her duffel bag the twenty-eight year old, Bajoran Tactical Officer retrieved a hypo-spray from her bag's mini-med kit. Checking the medicine container there was only enough for two more doses. “Damn...,” she cursed, finding the rationed amount of the stimulant that the kit carried overly frustrating.

    Typing on the tiny panel, she lowered the dosage amount that would come out before pressing the nozzle to her neck. Pressing the panel like a syringe button full on with her thumb, there was a hiss and the stimulant was injected into her body through her pores. Lieutenant Tara sighed with relief as the pain and throbbing went mild, almost completely numb. It was enough to let her know it was still there but not enough to cause he too much discomfort now. Putting the hypo away she looked up took a look around the junction she was in. From the looks of it she figured she was nearby the storage compartments and could at least find some more supplies in there if need be. At least it could help her make it the rest of the way to the station's Sickbay.

    Renn gripped a hold of the door's pull lever and jimmied the hatch beside her to open. Three pulls was all it took and finally both doors were slid apart and slid into the wall pockets. Staring down the long, dark Jefferies Tube gave her a foreboding notion, or perhaps dread. All the twenty-eight year old Bajorn woman knew was that something was off. “Well... don't I have a bad feeling about this?” she stated to herself.

    GS1: Storage Containers, Corridor.

    The dark haired, pale skinned man exited out the hatch of one of the storage compartments and scanned his surroundings. Gently closing the hatch, the pale man took one more glance around to make sure the coast was clear enough for him to move around. After fixing his sleeve he reached into his case and pulled out a small, hand-held device. It was dark, almost a violet color, with a curved neck near the top. At the top there was a three flat-pronged section, each nub had a rounded ball tip. Pressing the button on the side he felt the device begin to buzz, quietly. As he placed it against the underside of his chin he felt his skin begin to change and mold. The device did it painlessly but still he could feel his skin tugging and puling into a different shape and even his color began to change.

    Once the change was complete he placed the device away then made his way down the dark walled, dimly illuminated corridor. He only had a few hours like this until the procedure reversed itself, and quickened his pace as he walked briskly along.

    Shortly afterwards the nearby Jeffereies Tube hatch squeakily opened up and out crawled the dirty, injured and exhausted Lieutenant Tara Renn. She slumped down to the ground, leaned back, shutting the hatch behind her. There the Bajoran Lieutenant stayed, breathing heavily yet again as the pain in her ribs began to return once more. “Well that didn't last long enough...,” she murmured reaching into her duffel bag and taking out the mini-med kit.

    Hiding around the turn at the end of the corridor, stood the newly altered Science Officer. Watching her from a far was easy for him, due to the enhancements within his eyes, they allowed to zoom in on subjects. With his irises he scanned her body all over and noticed the injuries, and from what he could see on the outside she was indeed, fatigued. To him this Bajoran in this condition would be easy to dispose of, but unfortunately he couldn't use the phaser yet. So there would still be a body to take care of, but perhaps she could be of some use later.

    As he decided on a plan he took out the tricorder from his container and stepped out into the open. “Are you alright?” he asked.

    Renn turned and saw a tall, dark haired man with rindges around his face and forehead. Dark piercing eyes stared right into hers, almost through her. Some part of her could tell there was something wrong but in this condition it could of been the pain, mixed with being lightheaded, maybe even the residual stimulant. “Are you trapped like I am?” replied Renn, nearly dozing off but forcing herself to remain awake, although it was becoming increasingly difficult.

    “No,” the Altered Man stated and then slowly made his way over to her. He noticed the rank pips upon her neck and added, “Do you require assistance, Lieutenant?”

    “I'll be fine, -just...,” she cringed as she tried to get to her feet then wrapped an arm around her injured ribs. “Oooh.... yeah, I'll be fine. Just need to take it slow.”

    The Altered Man held up the tricorder within the palm of his hand. Beeping and blinkking as it did it's function he made it look lik ehe scanned her whole body. “Ribs broken, several cuts and bruises, blood loss....”

    “So you're a doctor?'

    “No. Science is my.... speciality.” he smirked while kneeling down beside her. “Now, let me help get you on your feet.”

    Putting an arm under hers, the Altered Man lifted Renn to her feet in one quick motion. “Sorry, I'll take it easy.”

    “You should of just went and got help, I'm sure you could of reached a working com-panel somewhere around here,” winced Renn they limped along down the corridor a bit.

    “I'm sure...,” he told her and then reached around to the other side of her neck and pressed his fingers and thumb on her nerves, performing the Vulcan nerve pinch. He felt her body begin to fall from his grasp, so he quickly braced and caught her body, then raised her back up. With one arm the Altered Man tossed the unconscious Lieutenant until he could get a good hold on her. “You still may be of use to me... alive more so then dead.... But that could change.”

    GS1: Galleria.

    Amanda briskly walked around the less busy Galleria, noticing for herself how many places were sealed up or closed off. Even some of the debris from earlier remained sprinkled upon the maroon carpeting. Suddenly a few of the lights above her started to flicker, she figured it was a power surge from the auxiliary conduit relays. Rolling her eyes, Amanda then tapped her communicator and followed the usual chirp, “C.N.C. This is Headly, please have someone look into the conduit relays near section thirty-four A through E.”

    “Aye, aye, Admiral. We're on it,” replied a voice from one of the Operations officers in the Command and Control center.

    “Thank you,” said Amanda, then she added, “Let me know when it's taken care of as well.”

    “Will do, mam.”

    With that Amanda Headly moved on a a little farther down the rounded Galleria corridor towards one of the fancier places that hadn't shut it's doors yet. On the fancy, blue and white tarp hanging over the door, was written in gold letters: “Utopia”Honestly she wondered if she actually ever noticed this place before, cause for the life of her she could not really recall it. At least it was no time like the present, and maybe she could at least get a decent cup of coffee. At least something better then whatever a replicator could ever materialize into existence.

    Entering the lowly lit, quaint restaurant, Amanda skimmed over the whole place seeing which of the smaller tables were available. Then she suddenly made eye contact with Charles who appeared to be sitting by himself, sipping away at blue, and white rimmed mug of tea. She assumed it was tea at least, cause he had never been a coffee drinker like herself. In fact he never drank alcohol or even synthahol either, there was never a taste for it in his opinion. Somewhere down inside she was kind of proud of him for that, even when he wasn't well, reclusive and shut her out. She knew Charles never touched the bottle, not even once back then, but now... now was another story. Unfortunately it was part of never keeping in contact with him, though she knew she could of asked Gary to check into it. But it was not her place to pry into his personal life, not anymore anyways.

    “Care to join me?” Charles asked with a small grin at his ex-wife, after she causally made her way over towards his table.

    “Are you sure you want my comany?” she asked, genuinely curious, though keeping a stern tone and gaze.

    Charles gave her another genuine grin and gestured to the chair with his mug, then leaned back and partially folded his arm, mainly to brace his other one as he took another sip of his warm tea. “Please.”

    “You know this tea ain't half bad,” he continued while Amanda sat down on the opposite side of the table for two.

    She looked over the white table cloth and noticed the usual utensils, fork, butter knife, spoon and a blue napkin rolled up with a gold ring in the middle, keeping it together. There was a glass of water too and figured that he was expecting someone, or then again maybe they always had water on hand. As she picked up the menu that was placed in front of her by one of the human waiters, she looked up and said, “I'll have a coffee.” Turning back to her ex husband, Amanda figured she should at least say something about the tea. “What kind of tea is it?”

    “Katorvn,” Charles replied, after swallowing another sip. “It has a bit of a sweet-bitter taste... but it's not overpowering. It's just... something different.”

    Headly felt a little uneasy and unsure of what to talk about exactly, it had been quite a few years since they actually sat down and just talked. Maybe more then few since they've ever done that. Some part of her wanted to lash out though, while another part told her to stay calm, and yet another side of her wanted to just... she pushed that thought out of her mind. Although she did ponder if he felt the same way, and how could he be so calm around her? Had he finally just let her go, did he feel nothing for her anymore? Now Amanda felt herself becoming angry and quickly shoved those feelings into a deep, dark corner of her mind. This was not the time or the place for it at all, but when was it? When would it ever be? “So...”

    “So....,” he said looking up from his mug, and into the aged, but still beautiful face of his ex-wife.
  18. Warp Rider

    Warp Rider Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    May 1, 2009
    Another Galaxy. Canada.
    Episode 1X01
    "Strangers in a Strange Land

    -Chapter 4-

    GS1: Storage Compartment 22.

    Tara groggily tilted her head back and forth as she awoke from her forced slumber. The sharp pain in her neck caused the twenty-eight year old, Bajoran Lieutenant to wince and cringe. While trying to raise her hand to rub at the tender spot, she snapped herself awake and notices the metal cuffs around her wrists, chaining them together. Following them with her eyes she noticed the chain was connected to a panel on the floor. At closer examination of the cuffs, she could tell that they were makeshift, and possibly even moulded around her wrists. Whoever did it would of had to of had superior strength... even superior to that of a Vulcan's...

    Suddenly she remembered the Science Officer with the ridges upon his face; but he wasn't Vulcan though. Yet the son of a gun used a Vulcan neck pinch, granted she read reports of certain other officers being able to use that technique to varying levels of success—some more successful then others, like Lieutenant Commander Data, during the 'Unification Incident'.

    Quickly and thoroughly scanning her surroundings, Renn finally laid her eyes upon a hunched over figure in Science blue. Even though the Bajoran lieutenant could only see him from the back she knew it was him. Anger, rage and thirst for blood boiled under the surface while watching him work on something. Leaning from side to side, ever so slightly, not to make too munch noise, she could barely see the light glow of an open panel. Though it did make Renn wonder why he didn't react to her waking up, especially when she rattled the chains. Finally deciding to break the silence and not seeing any way out of this yet, Renn spoke, “Heck of a neck pinch you got there...”

    “Hmph,” acknowledged the altered alien officer with smirk, typing away on the exposed panel, “Was wondering how long you were going to stay quiet.” He then turned his head in her direction slightly, “You snore too.”

    “Really...?” she asked rhetorically, then shook her head while adding, “I've never had anyone complain before.”

    “Oh no, complain I do not, Bajoran,” stated the altered man again, going back to work on the panel as he begin to place small, odd-shaped devices into different places and ports. “In fact it was a good way to know the difference of when you were really asleep.” Standing up he turned and faced his shackled captive and gave a subtle grin. “Or pretending to be asleep....”

    GS1: C.N.C.

    Ba'lon stood by the replicator as the swirling light and humming sounds of energy particles came together in a mass, forming a clear, glass mug of hot, herbal tea. Gripping the thin, black plastic handle the gold uniformed Dalfian removed the mug with one finger from the serving slot, slowly, hoping to not spill it all over the grey, grated flooring. Then he spoke to the replicator panel, “J'lotch. -Cold.” The synthesizing wall device lit up once more with another mug, this time a silver, metallic version, but with the same black handle he was able to grip with one finger and remove a little less carefully. Ba'lon quickly took a gulp and savoured the unique, tangy, semi-sweet flavor before moving back over to the science station pod.

    Sitting at one of the lower positioned consoles was T'Lea, monitoring the readouts even more closely, scanning every last nook and cranny of a particular section of the station. Unfortunately there was still no luck in detecting the foreign technology, or any signs of cloaking fields. Closing her eyes, the Vulcan lieutenant refocused and concentrated on her meditation for a brief moment. After opening her eyes again, she began to scan anther sector of the station, closer towards the interior sections, like Jefferies Tubes, catwalks, ducts, storage compartments, anything that would be a logical spot to stowaway in.

    Lieutenant Ba'lon casually stopped beside T'Lea, and from what he could tell she did seem a little fatigued. He put the mug of herbal tea down beside her on a spot, bare from console buttons or an open panel, “Here.”

    “Thank you, Lieutenant,” she replied, then picked up the mug with two fingers and sipped it. Placing it back she noticed Ba'lon had a drink too, from the smell of it she knew what it was. Raising her eyebrow T'Lea gave her fellow officer a questionable look.

    “What?” he asked, returning the questioning glance, surprisingly lifting the corner of his stoney, uni-brow.

    “J'lotch,” stated T'Lea, “At this point in the day?” Going back to her console she continued her typing and scanning, then added, “You are still on duty, Lieutenant.”

    “It's only alcoholic to lifeforms with green or yellow blood,” he told her and took another gulp, “But to a human... they'd have a melted hole where their stomach used to be.”

    “And Dalfian's are immune to its... harmful effects?”

    “It's a good relaxer,” informed Ba'lon, “With everything that's been happening, I could use it. Thankfully I don't need much sleep. I had my three hours this week already.” Leaning over her shoulder to look closer at the main console screen, Ba'lon checked the sensor images of section, biographical scan result. All the layouts appeared normal from what he could see, even though there was a lot of damage in those sections to just about everything. “Still nothing in those damanged areas?”

    “No,” T'Lea replied, typing on a smaller panel of buttons to bring up a bigger, current sensor overlay. “Whoever this individual is.. he is quite clever, and impeccably thorough at covering his tracks.”

    Operations officer Ba'lon leaned back a bit and then turned to his friend, “How do we know it's only an individual?”

    She turned to the Dalfian and raised an eyebrow again. There was no disputing his logic in this instance, they could be dealing with more then one individual. “You could be right, Lieutenant.” Turning back to her console she tapped the intercom button, opening a channel, “Control to Admiral Radcliffe.”

    GS1: Galleria, Utopia.

    Charles and Amanda sat together in the fancy, dimmed, quaint restaurant for quite a while conversing with mild chit-chat. Most of it was small talk as neither of them really wanted to push the others buttons, even though each of them knew they'd have to bring it up at some point. They just wanted to hold off on that for now, but eventually they knew one of them would cave and start. The only question was which one of them was going to yield and begin that conversation?

    Sipping their drinks again, Charles eyes drifted lower to Amanda's right hand where he saw a shiny, golden ring, with a uniquely cut diamond that fit snugly in the octagon-shaped center. Looking up to her eyes as he placed his cup down he said, “Have you remarried?”

    “No,” she replied, glancing down at the ring. She gently begin to touch and turn it around her finger, but instead of removing it, left it on. Then looking back up into Charles eyes, she added, “I wear to ward off anyone who wants to try their luck.”

    “I see,” replied Captain Gibson, putting down his cup again after taking another drink of his tea. It was hard for him to tell if she was not willing to give things another chance, though from her tone of voice he figured she wouldn't be seeing anyone else either. Not all cons so far, but nothing to write home about either.

    “I see you don't wear yours anymore,” said Amanda, casually, “You're not seeing anyone?”

    “Nope,” he replied with a head shake, “We're divorced and I didn't think it would be appropriate.”

    “To be seeing anyone?” she questioned, curiously wondering what he thought it wouldn't be appropriate to see someone new when they have been divorced for so long, “We're not together anymore, Charles. Neither one of us has a say if the other is with someone new.”

    “I meant wearing the ring,” corrected Charles, “But you're right. If either of us were seeing anyone it'd wouldn't be anyone else's business.”

    “No, it wouldn't,” stated Headly, taking a long sip of her coffee.

    “Well I don't want to cause an argument, that's not what I want,” Charles said, sighing as he lowered his gaze down at the still, milky liquid in his cup.

    Amanda crossed her arms and gazed at him hard with a furrowed brow, “What do you want, Charles? Why are you really out here taking this mission?”

    “I told you why,” he answered, taking a sip of his tea then looking her right in the eye as he put the cup back down. “I'm here to mend things between me and our son. And I want to explore the unknown... you know I've always wanted to do that, and only that.”

    “I know, it's all you ever wrote about during your tours in the war, every communique and sub-space message I got back from you till...,” Amanda trailed off then took a gulp of her coffee, unfortunately it wasn't wiping away the memories that flooded back into her mind. It was good coffee, the best she's ever had... but it certainly wasn't no Romulan Ale.

    “I stopped,” finished Charles sombrely, understanding how she was feeling, but didn't know exactly what to say next. There was really anything he could say or do to make it better, to take the pain she still must be feeling, hidden under her grim, seasoned exterior. In all the years he'd known her and loved her, Charles couldn't believe how thick she allowed her skin to become, so-to-speak. As an Admiral you did need to develop that trait, but as a Fleet Admiral one had to become almost Vulcan; to remain objective and leading example for all who were under their command. Especially this far out here beyond the homeworlds of Starfleet and the Federation.

    “You stopped, yes...,” Amanda stated finishing her coffee, then continued sternly, “I'm your commanding officer, Charles. I don't like being kept in the dark. So if there is another motive to this you should tell me now.”

    “There isn't, I assure you,” Captain Gibson said, reassuringly as he leaned forward, “I don't want to argue with you, Amanda. Though I do I want to ask you something.”

    Curious, Admiral Headly crossed her arms and leaned her head back a little, gesturing for him to continue. She indeed wanted to know where this was going, though part of her was a bit skeptical about his reply to her question. But it was possible that it was with the sabotage, threat of terrorism, in unknown space and worrying about their son, and having her Ex here was all making affecting her more then she realized. Stress, lots and lots of stress, but no one could blame her for being stressed as she was the Fleet Admiral of this station and sector and that was a job in and of itself.

    Gibson folded his hands on the table before him as he hunched over a bit, staring for a long time at the small candle, burning slowly on it's holder in the middle of the table. Taking a deep breath, he figured the best way to word what he was going to say next, then looked up with a slight mix of puzzlement and apology. “Why am I going to be so heavily armed for a mission of exploration? There's got to be more to it then just Dominion sector of space and unknown threats. And I know it's not cause of what's happening now. These weapons were implemented during the design stage.”

    Taking another deep breath, he then looked her right in the eyes and continued, “What's the real reason, Admiral?”

    Amanda glanced away and considered her response to his enquiry carefully. Her expression showed her to be deep in thought, she knew he could see that and even though she had every right to tell him no. That what he was asking was irrelevant, even classified and for her and the Admiralty's eyes—she decided against that. Headly knew she could trust Charles with the information and if he swore never to speak about it to anyone, if she ordered him not to, he'd follow without question; in fear of court martial for one. Quietly, she began, “I'm not supposed to tell you this. Only the Admiralty and those who were on the starbase engineering project and upgrade teams have any knowledge of this. But due to our past history and that I am—in fact ordering you not to divulge this to anyone, that includes your crew.” Then added sternly, “Are we clear, Captain?”

    Charles nodded as he looked down upon his folded hands, then back to her eyes and replied, “Understood, sir.”

    Amanda knew it was protocol, but she never liked that formality of it all and did her best to hold back from cringing at the “sir”. After a brief moment, she spoke, “We had sent out several ships to search for possibly colony sites, possible allies and some survey's prior to picking this location.” She took a breath and looked around the restaurant to make sure no one else was listening in, then continued, “We lost contact with the Algeria, a constellation class ship, outfitted with a high-output warp drive—for longer and faster, survey runs. At first we assumed interference, until weeks and then a month went by. Eventually we sent out ships to search for her.”

    “And you found nothing,” said Captain Gibson factually. “You think it's some kind of threat?”

    “We aren't certain of anything,” said Amanda, “But that doesn't preclude the possibility. Command agrees we must be prepared for anything. But now, with this terrorist running a muck and hiding on the station... I can't dismiss that it's not connected.”

    “Agreed,” added Charles, “Though there is the possibility that they encountered an anomaly. With all that upgraded technology on one of those old ships though... they could of had a ship-wide failure as well.”

    “We assumed that too, and I think it's possible. But as I said, this terrorist, 11 months after the disappearance of the Alergia?” Amanda thought about it for a long time, then as she shook her head, the forty-eight year old Admiral added, “I don't believe it's a coincidence.”

    “You never did,” Charles joked, giving her a small grin, then finished the last of his tea.

    “True...,” said Headly, smirking a bit when he wasn't looking at her.

    GS1: Storage Compartment 22.

    While looking over a PADD the altered, faux science officer occasionally pressed a few key buttons on the open wall panel. He had already connected a readout window on the PADD to see which commands he had to punch in, and which security measures he could avoid, hack through and even disable. Going sub-system by sub-system the Altered man found the main sensors and quickly circumvented their security locks, then turned the scans back towards the the center of the station. Specifically scanning and searching the entire command level first, to find out his luck paid off. Allowing himself a small smirk he prided himself on getting this hunch right. Quickly he began working on an algorithm that would allow him to send a massive feedback surge through the primary consoles.

    “What are you doing?” asked Renn, favouring the side with the broken ribs.

    “I'm planning a surprise visit...,” he replied, “and attempting to take care of a possible problem. Granted you are a problem too, in a manner of speaking. But one thing at at a time...”

    “Are you behind the explosion of the docking ring?” she asked trying to jimmy her wrists out of the makeshift shackles, while keeping an eye upon her captor. Maybe if he spilled some info on what he was doing, and if she was very lucky enough to get free, then she'd have a chance to warm someone about his next attack. If luck was on her side that is...

    “Yes. And no,” he answered nonchalantly with a bit of a smirk. “Undoubtedly I am responsible... but, like you... I am just following my orders.”

    “So who are you working for?” Renn questioned, giving a puzzled look while running through different factions and species through her mind. There were quite a bit of them, but with Romulus destroyed and several survivors who were not part of the Star Empire... The pirate groups did spring to her mind first and foremost. Only thing that dismissed the possibility was that whoever this person was, they were well funded, well equipped and trained, knowing how to circumvent security and all.

    “Wouldn't you like to know...?” retorted the Altered science officer as he punched int he final command code, starting up the algorithm then finally sending it. Rising to his feet, the Altered man turned to face the shackled Tara Renn once more. Noticing that she was looking in the direction of her case, he then pulled out a phaser from his sleeve. “It's right here. I'll be needing this one for now.”

    She wondered what he meant by that, then figured that he must have another one stashed away someone on him. From what she could tell there was no indication of another one anyone on the front of him, nor the back when he was hunched over though. “If you think a Phaser or two is going to help in your next attack, you're nuts.”

    “Maybe,” he retorted, “Maybe it's all part of the plan.” With that he pressed a button on the open panel and suddenly the powering up hum rose and began lower as several blue, lines of energy shot up from his feet. Quickly his body de-materialized into glowing, blue particle dust with some in the very center of his body remaining a bit longer, until they too vanished into thin air.

    GS1: C.N.C.

    T'Lea, Ba'lon and others in the Command and Control room worked tirelessly at their stations, scanning and monitoring systems, areas, even Jefferies tubes up the wazoo. Even though none of the species they rounded up turned out be the individual they were looking for, they still believed that this was the work of more then one. The Science and Operations officers then started to look into different types of radiation that could block out sensors, and low life readings that would not normally be detectable with normal scans. Unfortunately it was taking a lot longer to program the sensor arrays to the right sensitivity, though patience was a virtue that Vulcan's embraced a lot easier then some other races.

    “Gok'nah!” cursed Ba'lon, slamming a fist upon his console and then ran his hand over his stoney head, and along the back end spikes.

    “Calm down, Lieutenant,” said T'Lea without looking up from her screen.

    “You try staying calm when the computer takes too long to program,” he responded in agitation, but quickly regained his composure while taking a deep breath. “Sorry, I'm just anxious.”

    “No apologies are necessary, Lieutenant,” T'Lea told him, “It is all possible we are close to finding a way to locate the terrorist.”

    The six-foot-one Dalfian leaned back in his chair and took a deep breath as uncertainty swirled around in his mind. Then he answered, “I hope you're right... Lieutenant.” With that he went back to typing on his own console to continue minor scans.

    “It's not a question of whether I am right, Lieutenant,” she stated with a hint of certainty, “Only time will tell if this is the correct solution, and logic... is dictating so—as all other options have proved to be fruitless.”

    Beeping suddenly came from T'Lea's console, then Ba'lon's, then the next and so on and so forth. All the officer's examined their stations and panels closely, curious to locate the reason why an alert beep was coming form them. Then suddenly sparks erupted from the far right end of the command center, followed by several explosions that cascaded along, killing some of the officers. Ba'lon, wide-eyed , quickly grabbed T'Lea and pulled her away from the console, taking a the full brunt of an explosion and debris from where T'Lea sat, to his back, that sent them slamming hard upon the floor. With the muscular, orange, stone-like Dalfian covering his petite Vulcan friend, while smouldering trails of smoke trailed off the back of his scorched uniform jacket.

    More and more explosions encompassed the Command and Control, causing panels and consoles to light ablaze, smoke and spark all over as the screens and buttons flickered crazily. Officers and crew members were either knocked unconscious, injured, both and even killed as the whole room was completely damaged and nearly destroyed.

    Over in front of the docking control consoles several blue streams of energy shot up from the ground with the high-pitched sound of someone beaming in. As blue particles of light swirled in-congruently a humanoid form began to materialize and once the person was fully formed, the last of the dust-like particles in the middle of his body vanished. Now the Altered man stood upon the destroyed and fiery Command and Control center of Gamma Station One, phaser in hand and admiring his handiwork with a dark grin.

    Slowly he scanned the burning, smoke filled and sparking remains until he laid his, dark, cold piercing eyes upon the main computer core, which also led to the main fusion reactors a few decks down...
  19. Warp Rider

    Warp Rider Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    May 1, 2009
    Another Galaxy. Canada.
    Update: Chapter 5 is coming, almost finished and hoping to have it up by tomorrow night at the latest. God willing. It is indeed going to be the longest one, beating the prologue's 10 pages. But I believe you readers will be pleased, especially with the inner character moments, interactions and the fast-paced action at the end of this one. One more chapter after this though and "Strangers in a Strange Land" will be complete.

    So hang in there, cause it's coming. :)
  20. Warp Rider

    Warp Rider Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    May 1, 2009
    Another Galaxy. Canada.
    Episode 1X01
    "Strangers in a Strange Land"

    -Chapter 5-

    GS1: C.N.C.

    An ear-splitting ring rang through Lieutenant Ba'lon's head. It was enough to keep him where he was on the floor for several minutes, while shaking off the daze every so often. He hoped to regain his footing and hopefully figure out what the heck was happening. Then he heard the moan from underneath him, he looked to find his friend and fellow officer, Lieutenant T'Lea—a petite, Asian Vulcan with light brown hair that was longer gently resting upon her shoulders. She appeared to be unconscious from what the Dalfian could see. In fact he was a little worried that maybe he caused her to hit her head off the grated floor.

    Hesitantly he touched her neck, hoping for any sign of a pulse, until he realized how stupid that was of him. There wasn't a way to determine a Vulcan pulse like that, and he would have face-palmed himself if it were for the splitting headache constantly pounding from the back of his head. Then as he tried to lift himself up, all of the sudden he stopped with a small wince escaping his rocky-lips. A sharp, searing pain shoot along his back, keeping him where he was. Then came the smell of burnt fabric, filling all four of his nostrils, making the brutish Lieutenant furrow his stone-like brow. He remembered seeing where the surge was going next through the consoles, and then remembered the sound and heat from the explosion behind him. Figured there would of been shrapnel from something that close exploding. Still Ba'lon knew he had to try and move, he didn't want to squash his friend and finding out who else was alive was the next step, before trying to get T'Lea and himself out of this burning death trap.

    Gathering what he could of his strength, Ba'lon then rolled onto his side, removing himself off of T'Lea. Keeping an eye on her too see if she was close to waking up, he skimmed the operations and science station platform of the Command and Control room. Fires were blazing with sparks continuing to shower down on the floor in some sections. Smoke became thicker and made it little by little, harder for him to breathe. As the Dalfian Lieutenant forced himself to sit up, he checked under the console they we're right next to, and looked for the emergency med-kit. With any luck there was a re-breather in with the case, and if they were extremely lucky—more then one.

    With a forceful kick to the trapezoid shaped panel that covered up the medical supplies, it flapped down and dangled there on it's hinges. Quickly Ba'lon drug himself agross the grated flooring and reach in to pull out a the standard, Starfleet grey med-case. Putting it upon the floor he pressed the release switches on the edge facing him, he heard a click from both in unison and raised the cover up. Inside there he saw the usual med-kit equipment, a hypo-spray, hypo-medicine capsules to plug into the spray—each one with a specific label. A thin, curved silver, field cordical stimulator below the hypo, beside it there was small, square, grey device. Ba'lon figured it was a dermal regeneator. In the top section of the case held the usual bandages, laser scalpel, cauterizer, among other things. The kit had almost everything you needed in a first aid kit.

    Grabbing the med-kits tricorder first though, he checked out T'Lea's bio signs, and they seemed to be in order... for a Vulcan. Putting away the medical scanning device, he then reached for the hypo-spray, locked in one of the clear capsule filled with a blue-ish liquid, and pressed it to the side of her neck. Punching in the precise dosage at the back of the nozzle, which was still just as tiny as ever and a little bit difficult for him. Ba'lon managed and hoped it'd be the right amount to wake her up... or worse case scenario... he get to see a Vulcan hyped up like a hamster on caffeine. Or better yet, like that human from that earth program someone loaned him... Back to something. Ba'lon couldn't remember much more then it saying it was part three though.

    Taking a deep breath and then slowly exhaling it out of his four nostrils, Ba'lon pressed on the back panel of the hypo. The familiar hiss came from it as the waking agent seeped into the pores in the young looking, Vulcan's neck. After he removed the spray, the hulking, Dalfian found himself leaning over his unconscious friend. Seemingly there was no reaction yet, and looking at the dosage he programed in, he was sure it was enough for her species. Injecting any more probably wouldn't be such a good idea, so he decided to give her a minute and lightly nudged her on the shoulder every so often.

    “T'Lea? Come on, wake up,” spoke the brutish orange, stone-like alien quietly, whilst keeping an eye out for anyone else that seemed to be alright.

    At the moment the Asian Vulcan Lieutenant's eyes slowly began to flutter open. Taking in a breath it was sharp and abrupt. She continued to lay there for a bit though, to allow the sudden pain in the back of her head to subside. It wasn't going easily, but with luck, T'Lea figured that maybe she would be able to meditate and block the pain somewhat. Doing her best to drown out he distractions, she closed her eyes slowly and started to wipe her mind clean of random thoughts. Focusing on the blankness or whiteness could call it... pretty much focusing on nothing was the key, to blanket out every stray thought. Soon there was no pain, or to describe it more accurately... the pain was somewhere else, far away and faint that it was pretty much non-existant.

    Ba'lon watched as T'Lea slowly opened her eyes once more, and as she attempted to sit up he braced her with a hand on her back. “Easy, T'Lea. You have a mild concussion and a few bumps and bruises... if I'm reading this thing right,” he siad, gesturing the tricorder in his other hand.

    “Thank you, Lieutenant,” she thanked Ba'lon in her usual Vulcan, unemotional tone and then stiffened up a bit. “I do believe your readings are correct though. This is... very agitating.”

    “You? Agitated? How can that be?” Ba'lon mocked jestingly.

    “I appreciate your sense of humour to bring some... levity to the situation. But I do not believe it is the appropriate time, Lieutenant,” replied T'Lea while getting to her feet with Ba'lon's aid as he rose with her, subtly grunting from the pain. “Are you injured as well?”

    “I'll heal...,” replied Ba'lon gingerly touching around his back, “Might take some pain killers though. Granted my Mother would have my head if she found out I injected such a substance. But... in this case... I'll make an exception and do the forgiveness chant later. To appease Mom, even if I don't tell her.”

    With an eyebrow raise, T'Lea gave him a rather questioning look but decided to just accept it and not delve into her colleagues personal matters. “We should attempt to find other survivors and then find a way out of this as soon as possible. I'll scan around, and you can attend to your needs.” She then took the tricorder from her friend and flipped it open as she wandered over to the first body she found, splayed along the grated floor. Unfortunately they were dead, but the Asian Vulcan didn't let it bother her, at least not on the outside. Quickly she moved to the next person and so on, and so forth.

    Meanwhile Ba'lon replaced the capsule in the hypo-spray he just used with the pain killers variant, which held a green liquid. As he pressed it to the side of his neck, he injected the chemicals, then suddenly from the corner of his eye, he saw some movement. Looking in the direction of the upper platform, holding strategic command stations, and docking console consoles, he saw the column of light emanating out of the floor. The light was fractured every time there was movement from inside, Why would someone be inside the computer core, he wondered? Unless they tried to shut down the cascade that went through most of the consoles? Tapping his com-badge, he quickly looked to find T'Lea, “Ba'lon to T'Lea.” There was no response and assumed the communications signal relays were fried. Great, more stuff to fix later, thought the Dalfian to himself.

    Checking to see where T'Lea was again, he slowly limped his way over towards her, trying his best to remain as quiet as possible. Just in case the humming and ruffling from the cooling systems inside the computer core weren't enough to block out any noise being made from his limping. Something just didn't sit well with Ba'lon, even though it was entirely possible that someone was in there working on repairs. He wanted to be safe and get some back up before checking it out. Maybe even grabbing a phaser or two, if he could find one.

    T'Lea was crouched next to a young, female ensign, and from the tricorder readings there was not much that could be done to save this person either. They were barely alive as it was but they wouldn't be for much longer. The Vulcan lieutenant found herself staring the eyes of the dying, blond, curly haired ensign, covered in large burns and scrapes from head to toe, and massive burnt puncture through her abdomen. It was indeed cauterized but the internal damage was worse how it looked on the outside.

    Even calling upon her Vulcan disciplines became difficult as the sound of the young ensign's hyper ventilating, was all that could be hear over the constant sparking and burning consoles. But it wasn't just that. It was also the fact that this ensign's eyes remained wide open and stared right back into hers. The light within them slowly fading into a blank stare as her breath slowed down to utter, squeaking gasps while desperately clinging for life. T'Lea stayed with her, even though she wasn't obligated to, but from what she knew of humans—this was the right thing to do. Logically it didn't make sense to her, and moving onto the next person would of been the correct procedure... There was something in the young ensign's eyes that kept her there, and maybe in some strange way... comforting this girl before she went, was logical in some way she just could not see. In fact not too long ago this could of been her, if Ba'lon hadn't jump in the way of her exploding console when he did.

    Maybe somewhere within her Vulcan heart, there was indeed some shred of emotion felt for this poor victim. Slowly T'Lea reached a hand out and gently closed the deceased ensign's eyes, and silently she hoped that this person was able to find a sense of peace in wherever her essence escaped to. There was similarity there between the two races. In that both had a soul, even though what the Vulcan's believe was what they called a Katra. From what T'Lea had read on human beliefs, it didn't seem to be all that different.

    Soon after T'Lea heard the shuffling limp of someone moving behind her, and from the sounds of the subtle grunting due to her Vulcan hearing, the Asian-Vulcan Lieutenant figured who it was. “Yes, Lieutenant?” T'Lea asked without looking, while starting a scan ont he fellow beside the young ensign.

    “T'here is someone's in the computer core, up there. Look,” said Ba'lon quietly while gesturing with his right hand towards the open computer core.

    Taking her attention from the tricorder she then gazed up towards Ba'lon pointed on the high level behind the ops and science consoles. Indeed there was someone in there as the column of light form inside the core was being fractured by someone's movements. Raising an eyebrow, she looked over to her colleague. “Another survivor, perhaps?”

    “Perhaps...,” Ba'lon repeated looking T'Lea with concern in his eyes, then as he looked back to the open core, “Perhaps not.”

    T'Lea slowly looked in the direction her friend was looking, and had to admit that she was indeed curious. Though there was what the human's called a gut feeling that there was something indeed off about this.

    GS1: Storage Compartment 22.

    The dark, short hair, athletically though bruised, Lieutenant Tara Renn found herself alone in that nearly barren storage compartment. She wasted no time attempting to get from the makeshift shackles around her wrists, that was subsequently chained to the floor in front of her. Trying with all her might, even though every time she did, the pain from her broken ribs shot through her like a hot poker being jabbed into her side. That chain just would not break. Cursing under her breath, Renn slowly slid down the back wall to the floor, attempting to catch her breath. She had to give it to the guy, he certainly knew how to make a good pair of cuffs at least, she just wished she wasn't the one that was cuffed with them. Renn grinned as she thought about how they could be fun under a different set of circumstances, before shaking off that thought.

    Sitting there on the floor again, Renn began to inspect the room for anything she could find to free herself. Unfortunately there was only a few boxes, some tools, what looked to be the casing of a hand phaser, and the open panel with the mini-panel and monitor attached to it. Things certainly weren't looking to be in her favour though. While laying her head back against the bulkhead she closed her eyes as the pale, blue light above caused her some discomfort. Or it was a combination of the neck pinch and the light and everything else that ached all over. With a sigh she lowered her head and then slowly eyed the tools over again, checking them out one by one, hoping to at least find something within reach to use to cut the chains, or at least free her from the floor. Then maybe, she would have a fighting chance whenever that saboteur came back.

    All of this did start to remind her of a time when she found herself captured and held prisoner, by a small band of Cardassians. Though in all honesty she did not want to remember that particular memory, not now or ever again. Under her breath she cursed the room for somehow drawing that memory to the surface, even though it was stupid, blaming a inanimate object was just foolishness. But nevertheless it surfaced and Renn foundself beginning to relive that time, within the confines of her mind. In fact one could call it prison of her own making.

    The sent of the dusty, dark and damn cavern was the first sensation to come back to her. Then there was the light of a burning fight pit, made by the Cardassian soldiers as they tried to remain warm during the long night. Being on a lone mountain-ranged world, far away from either homeworld, gave no sense of comfort to any of them. But that one Cardassian, she assumed was the leader eyed her for a long time that night. Renn could feel his eyes piercing through her and reluctantly undressing her—she could smell burning desire reeking off of him. It disgusted then young, Bajoran officer to no end. What she wouldn't give to break free of her binds, just so she could tackle and beat that monster within an inch of his life, then squeeze out his last breath with her hands wrapped tightly around his neck. The primal need to watch the lights go out within his eyes became almost dire now. She hated the Cardassian bastards who occupied her world, pillaging, using up the natural resources, raping and butchering civilians at their leisure, and oppressing the entire people under their boot.

    Renn realized it wasn't the exact same situation like it was back then, and that the Cardassian occupation and the Dominion war that followed had been over so many years now. That was another thing that crossed her mind, was it a new Dominion plot? Could this person be working for them? Maybe he was a Changeling, or some other shape shift race of sorts?

    Then from the corner of her eye she spotted something on the floor. She looked at the small, five inch, cylindrical grey device, which had a thing, rounded neck connected to a flat nozzle. It appeared to be a laser scalpel, a quality one in fact, and also one of those high-energy types. If she could somehow reach it, maybe it would be enough to cut through the chain at least. Renn believed it to be worth a try, as there weren't many other options popping up right now.

    Doing her best to manoeuvre herself over enough, the inured Tara Renn extended her left leg outward in hopes of reaching with her foot, enough at least slide the small surgical instrument closer. Though after the first two attempts caused her ribs to send hair-splitting arcs of pain through her upper body, she found herself already regretting this choice of action. Instead of giving up though she gitted her teeth, and tried to hold back the gagging from the dryness in her mouth, coupled by the shocks of pain from her side, and begrudgingly continued her attempt.

    GS1: Corridor en-route toAdmiral Headly's Office.

    Amanda and Charles walked along down the corridor together, side-by-side, but not holding hands. Though the thought crossed their minds and a few times on the way up to her office, their fingers brushed quite a bit. Neither one wanted to be the one to take the first step in making things go any further for one reason or another. Deep down the yearning for that connection was strong for both of them, but still, they fought it off and buried those thoughts even more. This was not the place or the time for that, not while the station was on Yellow Alert with a terrorist playing hide and seek somewhere. In fact he could be anywhere, attempting to sabotage anything and everything. Destruction so far had been the only goal they could figure, well destruction and fear, or possibly to show how unsafe the Federation really was. And if thise was done by an already established enemy... the question was “Why now?”

    “Hmmm?” inferred Charles, looking in his ex-wife's direction, seeing her looking straight ahead. From what he could tell she was certainly deep in thought. “I haven't seen you that deep in thought since... well... in those thirteen years of being with me.”

    “Lot can change over time, Charles,” Amanda replied with a sigh, “I'm trying to piece together the reason, or reasons... why something like this is happening now. As well as who could be behind it,” she turned to her ex-husband and continued, “Who has what to gain by starting a wave of terror with us now? Romulus and Remus have been destroyed, and those who didn't want to come to us for aid banded together as pirate factions. But in a long drawn out conflict, they must know they wouldn't last very long. The Dominion are obeying the last non-aggression treaty we've had them sign, though from the reports... it is possible they are dipping their toes in this neck of the woods again. The Borg wouldn't even think of doing this. There's the So'na, but I can't see it being them either. Cardassians?”

    “I don't know if we can really pinned this one any one of them, maybe if they were working in a group...,” Charles interrupted and once he mentioned possibility of others working with Borg, they both shared a look of disbelief.

    “Nah,” they both said in unison as they shared a small laugh.

    “That doesn't seem likely to happen, in any universe,” said Charles, stepping out of the way of an incoming crew member coming from the other end of the hall. “It's all possible that this could be something new.”

    “I doubt all alone though,” added Amanda as they turned the corner and quickly walked towards the twin, gun-metal grey doors, with a maroon center that lead into her large office.

    “I agree,” Charles chimed in, “Whoever is behind this... they are seldom ever alone.”

    Stopping just outside Headly's office, Amanda turned around to her husband while punching in her door code without looking and said, “Being armed for bear isn't sounding so bad now, is it?”

    “I can't say I'm anymore thrilled about it then I was earlier,” Charles said, looking just a calm as ever though there was a stern disapproval in his eye, behind that little smile he gave her on the surface. “But I'm sure it will come in handy. Eventually. And hopefully for constructive purposes rather then the what they are obviously designed for.”

    “When have weapons ever been known to be used for that, right Charles?” questioned Amanda with a little grin of her own. Then the doors behind her whooshed aparted with the usual sound and she was first to enter the darkened office space.

    Captain Gibson watched his lovely ex-wife enter the darkness of her office and slowly seen the lights dimly illuminate the room from within the darkened doorway. He thought about what she had just said for a moment and then grinned to himself to an old Starfleet mission brief that was required reading at the Academy during his younger days as a first year cadet. Then he said quietly to himself before entering the room, “I can think of one occasion where it's applicable.”

    GS1: Security Office.

    Admiral Gary Radcliffe stood behind the shoulder of another middle aged looking Security Officer who he had gotten to know for the passed few years. They both huddled over the laptop console, trying to get the CNC communications back up. All there came from the speakers though, was static, though a few minutes earlier everything was fine. Then suddenly someone shouted there was an overload in progress, and the sound of explosions blanketed out everything else. Until there was only nonthing but the static they were hearing now.

    “Still can't reach CNC, Chief?” Gary asked.

    “No, Admiral,” replied the silver haired, European, Security Chief while adjusting his gold uniform jacket before getting out of his chair, heading over towards a wall safe. He punched in a code, heard the click and hiss and then turned the grip before prying it open and reatrieve a couple hand phasers. The Chief tossed one to Gary and slid the silver and black, thinly curved and flat weapon on front of his left hip. Gary did the same as he followed him out of the small, violet-grey office. “We're going to have to go up there and see what's going on. And I'd rather you be armed, Admiral. For your safety. I'll be taking up most of my officers with me. If it's the saboteur that's behind it. Could get messy.”

    “I appreciate that the concern, Chief Lorenzo,” Radcliffe said appreciatively. “But I will be accompanying you and your officers. No butts. And it's Admiral's prerogative, understood?” he added, and held up a hand to stop Lorenzo from protesting any further, “And we're going, right after I inform Fleet Admiral Headly.”

    “Yes sir,” said Lorenzo said with a hint of disapproval in his voice.

    Radcliffe tapped his comm-badge, causing it to make that little electronic chirp, “Radcliffe to Headly.”

    GS1: C.N.C.

    Lieutenant Ba'lon searched with his long vision across the far end of the Command and Control deck. What he was looking for was a mini-weapons locker, he needed to grab a couple phasers for him and his friend T'Lea—who was still checking over the dead and injured. Just in case things got heated if whoever was in the computer core, wasn't friendly. Spotting something that looked like small weapons cabinet in the wall, covered over by debris, the brutish Dalfian then attempted to limp his way over towards it.

    “I think I see a hand phaser locker under there,” said Ba'lon passing his Vulcan friend, crouched in front of another body.

    T'Lea looked in the direction he was heading in and raised an eyebrow at the mix of collapsed grating and broken pieces of bulkheads. Perhaps his enhanced vision did give Ba'lon an advantage to see hidden objects. Turning to look and see if anyone was coming out of the computer core, she hoped that her friend was right about the weapons locker. If whoever it was happened to be the one behind the terrorist actions on the station, they no doubt could use the fire power, at least maybe to hold this person in custody. T'Lea had no doubts that security was indeed on their way. Just that getting the doors open or the turbolifts operational was another matter entirely. Although if need be, there were other ways to get in and out of C.N.C. None of them were fast passages though.

    After limping and grunting as he struggled his way over top of fallen bulkheads, damaged consoles and what have you, Lieutenant Ba'lon reached wall. Still turning to see if their guest had heard all that ruckus, he sighed with relief that no one appeared to see what was going on. Now just to remove the drbris before him without getting the person's attention was another matter entirely. Gently, but forcefully, he grabbed onto the edges of the grating. Ba'lon gave one more look see and then heaved with everything he had. Scratching against the other debris, caused a small, though loud, screech to escape. The Dalfian froze and quickly checked to see if there was anyone popping out of hte computer core again.

    The movement inside the core stopped for a moment, then slowly started to continue whatever it was doing. No one peaked out of the hole to see what caused that noise. Although Ba'lon was sure that whoever it was heard it, and wondered to himself why they didn't come out to investigate. He knew he could have... after taking several deep breaths to calm his nerves. Sadly it was a characteristic of his race to be cautious.

    Once finished, T'Lea closed up the tricorder and attached it to her right hip, allowing the magnetics to kick in and grip the metallurgic fibres in the fabric of her uniform. Then she moved up to a nearby console in the same direction that Ba'lon was in, though only a few feet away from him. While typing in some commands to see how bad the communications were, she hit the volume control and turned down the sound level of the buttons. It was a good precaution with the possibility of having a intruder in the vicinity. From the read out monitor, T'Lea could see that the comm-relays were fused, both the transceiver and receiver were both shorted out. This told her that any hope of calling for outside assistance would not be likely, albeit futile. Though if the standard ways were cut off, there could very well be a not so standard, or orthodox way to get around it. Perhaps tapping in through the replicators or transporters came to mind. As an old teacher of hers taught her during her time at the Vulcan Science Academy: “Once you eliminate the possible, no matter how improbable, must be the truth.”

    GS1: Storage Compartment 22.

    Inching her foot ever closer to the laser scalpel on the dark, grated floor, Tara Renn held in the urge to grunt from the pain in her side. Oh did she wish she had more of that stimulant in her system now, though that wasn't the main priority right now. The thing to do now was to get free and then take a look at that console. She knew the terrorist had used it to beam himself away, and from the looks of it, the miniature screen had doubled as a mini-monitor of sorts. Then glancing over at her belongings on the floor, the flap left open, Renn considered going after that next instead.

    Finally she reached far enough and carefully slid the laser scalpel over, and managed to get i between her feet. Reaching down with her cuffed hands she was able to grab in a under-handed grip, while examining the surgical tool for the activation button. It didn't take her long to realize there were two and quickly pressed in the bottom one with her thumb. The emitter shortly activated a thin, red energy blade. It's hot-white cored reflecting in her eyes as the twenty-eight year old Bajoran woman, caught herself staring at it for a long time.

    The red glow gave off no heat from what she could tell, but that light was enough to make her think back to that campfire. As the memories of that night flowed back into her mind, her face got scrunched up as the anger swelled up within it. Quickly forcing herself to focus on the task at hand, she stabbed into the chains with the energy blade. Sparks and trailing clouds of smoke lifted off of the impact point and drifted upward, dissipating into the recycled air. It was only a matter of seconds before the chains dropped with a loud CLACK and CLANK against the metal grating. Unfortunately Renn didn't feel brave enough to try cutting off the cuffs though, given how close they were to her skin. But at least they could prove useful in hand-to-hand combat maybe. If the occasion should ever arise, and in fact part of her hoped that it would. She had every intention on cracking that terrorist's skull open if given the opportunity.

    Clicking off the instrument she quickly, though clumsily crawled on all fours, gritting her teeth through the pain all the way over towards her duffel bag. Granted it was a short distance, but with that constant throbbing from multiple broken ribs, among everything else that hurt; that distance seemed or in fact grew to be longer that it really was. Reaching into her duffel bag she pulled out the mini-med-kit and took out the hypo once more. There was barely enough in there, and sadly that was typical for such a small kit of supplies. Cursing it she shook her head and injected the last of it into her system, and just as Renn assumed, barely enough to take away the pain.

    “Better then nothing...,” she exhaled and then slowly, cautiously stood to her feet. Renn did feel a little wobbly, perhaps woozy, but she did her best to take care while quickly walking over to the open console. Checking it out she seen where the transporter had been tied in, though how he was monitoring everything and not being detected was another thing to figure out after. As she ignited the scalpel again, the young Lieutenant tactical officer reached into the open panel and slowly eased the tip of the blade towards the connecting, tri-copperite wires. With a flick of her wrist they were instantly cut and she quipped, “Let's see you beam out now.”

    She signed in relief that there were no sparks, no explosions, nothing to say that it was rigged to take out anyone that tampered with it. She thought about it for a second and figured maybe he never thought of anyone getting this close to his handiwork. Although that was a bit peculiar that someone with that kind of knowledge wouldn't have rigged this to blow if there had been any tampering. Then her eyes shifted to the mini-monitor—that was when the realization kicked in. “That must be rigged at least...”

    GS1: Admiral Headly's Office.

    Amanda Headly sat along with her ex, Captain Gibson on one of the comfy sofa's, the one closest to the doorway on the upper level, in front of the large window that towered them both. If there was ever a moment to feel like insects in the vastness of space, without needing a suit to keep you from exploding from the insie out, this was it. The wide open panorama of the twinkling darkness, together with the almost holy illumination of the atmosphere from the planet below. Combine that with the lights from the station and the other celestial, planetary bodies in the distance. It was indeed, breathtaking, even to those who work in this impressive scape of infinity on a regular basis.

    They both casually sat there, chatting and enjoying a class of wine while in each others company. There was no sense of rank, or duty as they talked. This wasn't about that, but rather this was a personal conversation, one where they would have to be alone to have. Rather then out in the open where anyone could eavesdrop on them at any time. Neither of them wanted the uniform to get in the way, and Amanda took that a bit further, by having the front of her uniform jacket open a bit. Though she did this to be a little more casual and relaxed, she did realize that Charles could see a bit of her exposed cleavage, and absentmindedly pulled her jacket a bit closer, to conceal herself a little more. The though that the alcohol could be effecting her did cross Amanda's mind though, cause this wasn't synthahol. No, this was the good stuff, the real, genuine article, inhibition lowering drink that you had to bring on board yourself. Or know someone who owed you a favour or two, though sometimes it was given as a gift, depending on the occasion.

    After taking a sip from the decanter glass, Charles looked at it and said, “Klethnorian, 2293?”

    “Yes,” Amanda replied, raising her glass to take another sip of hers though also to hide her smile. “You've had it before?”

    “Yeah, once.... This same year actually,” he replied.

    “I got it a month ago, from a Cargo drop,” she said, taking a deeper sip, “It was a gift.”

    “Mhmm. Well an interesting year..., from what I've read anyways,” added Charles, looking at the dark, purple-red liquid as he swirled it around in the large glass before taking another sip, “A very... interesting year.”

    Amanda stared for a long time at Charles as she drank, only realizing she was drinking a little more and faster then she should have. Tipping the glass back away from her mouth she caught a bit dribbling down her lip and wiped it away. Indeed this stuff was nearly as potent as Romulan Ale from what she was told by the Cargoship Captain that she bought it from.

    Few moments later, Charles felt as if he was being watched and turned to find his ex-wife staring out the window. Shifting himself he looked out into the vast darkness, filled with swirling colourful nebulae towards the far right. Some vessels orbited around them as well and he thought he recognized a couple of them. “Makes you realize how small we really are out here...,” said Charles then their gazes met, and he finished, “wouldn't you agree?”

    “Yeah, it really does...,” she replied distantly, staring down into her glass and saw her reflection within the dark liquid. For the longest time Amanda allowed it to look back at her and wondered if she really wanted to drown herself in the intoxication, to let it all go, in order to allow herself to feel any brief inkling of intimacy. Especially from him, though from what she could discern from looking at him, Charles didn't seem like he was interested in getting back together. In fact he did seem a little happier that he wasn't hitched anymore. Was she really that bad of a wife?

    “Charles...,” Amanda spoke quietly, just enough for him to hear her. He looked over to her, and their eyes met met. At that very second they could almost read each others minds, maybe it was because of how long they had lived together back in the day. Like most marriages, you just learned a lot about your significant other and it sticks with you. Even after parting ways, there is always a lingering imprint left behind on the other.

    Amanda involuntarily lifted off the couch and hesitantly crawled on over towards her, charming ex-husband, only stopping to put down her glass on the coffee table beside them. She leaned in close, close enough for him to feel her warm breath against his own lips, and just as she was about to make contact—Charles stopped her.

    “No Amanda,” he said, willing himself to hold back with everything he had. He could feel his heart pounding loudly in his chest, even wondered if she could hear it herself. Charles hoped she could not though, because if she knew how much he wanted this too, there would be no stopping it from happening. He just did not want to wake up the next morning to find that this was all due to the alcohol and the lowering of inhibitions, with the emotions of regret swooping in soon after and lingering like a bad aftertaste. “It's not... a good idea... not right now, Amanda.”

    Admiral Headly searched Charles' eyes, hoping to find any smidge that he could of been lying. To her disappointment and yet, also to her relief, Captain Charles Gibson had the best poker face she had ever seen; even to this day. She watched him turn away from her for a bit as he took another sip of wine, and then slowly sat back herself as she regulated her breathing from the heavy, chest heaving breathes she had been taking moments ago. Amanda wasn't sure if was the alcohol or that fact that her ex had just shut her down from something she believed truthfully they both needed. Although instead raising her voice, or telling him to get out Amanda just rose up from the couch and started to hook the zipper of her jacket. While walking up to the railing across from where they sat, she zipped it up and tucked the jacket down. All the while taking a deep breath to reorganize herself.

    “I should get going,” he said, a little more sombrely then he probably would have liked; and with that he placed the still half full glass upon the table then headed for the doorway. When the doors whooshed open, Charles stopped himself with a hand on the wall, then turned back to his lovely ex-wife who still had her back to him as she stood in front of the railing. For a while he couldn't take his eyes off her and part of him did consider it was indeed the wine. From his past experience with it Captain Gibson did come to understand why. When they said Romulan Ale was instant drunk, Klethnorian was that times two and probably then some. Though manageable if you controlled how much and how fast you drank at least. Unfortunately he had to learn that the hard way but that memory was for another time.

    “It's the wine, I know how potent it is. We don't want to regret something happening the next day.” Charles said, hoping for that to some how smooth things over. “But it's probably best to not just slip right back into that, at least.... not for now,” he added a little more calmly then finished, “We just got reacquainted with one another. It's too soon. I'm... sorry, Amanda.”

    “Of course you are,” she said while forcing her scowl into a smile as she held back tears that wanted to pour out. Headly turned back and sauntered over to the table, picking up the little bit of wine that remained in her glass and looked at through the ambient light that outlined the edge or the window's force field emitters. “You're right though... this stuff has a heck of a kick.”

    “Maybe you should not finish that glass,” he said taking a few steps toward her and holding up a hand, “Maybe wait until... tomorrow, okay, Amanda?” God he wished she'd listen so he could head out and go back to his quarters in order to sleep off the drunken effects he was barely able to fight off. Keeping himself in check was indeed becoming quite the struggled, though he was sure there could be something in the station's sickay that he could take, at least Charles hoped there was.

    “Why wait till tomorrow, when you can do today!” she blurted, almost hysterically and downed the rest of the glass in one shot. Tilting her head forward again, Amanda held the glass against the side of her head before lowering it to her side and giving her head a quick shake, as if she just took a shot of tequila. “What am we doing?”

    “We were enjoying each others company, chit-chatting about things. Though I don't think we really did discuss something we should have been..,” he told her looking out the window as he practically shuffled closer to her, trying to himself from stumbling. “But with how drunk we are right now... it may be best to save that for another time.” Charles reached out for his ex and gently rubbed up and down her arm, before he took the glass out of her hand and helped her sit back on the couch. “We both in no condition to do anything, let alone talk right now.”

    “You're right, no more wine... only synthahol from here on in. At least no hang overs when you consume that like the shuttle load,” Amanda chuckled and leaned back against the soft cushioning of the dark, violet couch with the palms of her hands pressed lightly over her eyes, then running her fingers through her curly, shoulder-length brown hair.

    “Amanda, I am sorry for how I've been in the past,” he finally said, “But rushing back into something like that... after so many years of being apart.... it just wouldn't be good. For either of us.”

    “You forgot how many years we've been separated?” she questioned and then eased her self to sit up. Once sitting straight as she could get, Amanda gave him a questionable look and enjoyed how much she was making him sweat now. Putting him on the spot like that. Well she was enjoying it a little bit, but not to much. “Well, Charles?”

    “Could be the wine's effects...,” he said almost mumbling as he trailed off and almost reached for his glass but decided against it. “Look, I'm sorry Amanda.”

    “Don't sweat it, Charles... I can't even remember either anymore....,” Admiral Headly sorely admitted and rose up from her seat while moving back towards the railing. “Though you are probably right that it's the wine messing with our heads. Good stuff this Klettmoran... or whatever you call it.”

    “Klethnorian...,” he corrected while slowly standing himself and slowly moving up behind her, then almost hesitantly wrapping his arms around her waist from behind. He watched her turn slightly in surprise, but soon relaxed looked him in the eyes. “I'm honestly surprised I can remember that right now, let alone correct you on it.”

    “That's one thing I didn't miss,” she told him with a bit of a laughed, “Well maybe that's not true. Don't we love each other for our faults as much anything we admire about one another? Isn't that what it's supposed to be like? Through thick and thin? Sick or in health? Till death do us part?”

    Charles held her close and slowly got her moving with him, almost like a slow dance while looking her in the eyes and softly said to her, “Sometimes. Sometimes it doesn't work out like that exactly. And ... it takes little more work I suppose. Though through thick and thin?” he asked, gesturing to his slightly thicker exterior compared to her thinner, though slightly taller frame, though she still looked great in his eyes. Part of him would admit at least to himself, he was curious to see her out of that uniform again. She certainly got his blood flowing, there was no doubt of that.

    “I wasn't being literal, Charles,” she admitted with a chuckle, giving him the once over. “Though... I can't say it's a turn off.”

    “Well that's good to know,” Charles replied with a small, but genuinely, hopeful smile. And honestly at this point, Charles wouldn't of minded if they took things a little further now, even though he new almost certainly that was the alcohol talking. If Amanda initiated it now, he would go with the flow.

    “Uh-huh?” she nearly belted in laughter as she nodded to him in acknowledgement. “So what is it that we should be talking about...”

    Charles had to think for a second, and for the life of him couldn't remember what it was he meant before. Well he had to hand it off to the wine for making him forget now. Or congratulate it on the bad timing, or perhaps the wine maker. “Got to love our timing..., cause for the life of me I can't remember what we should of been talking about. Though I'm sure it'll come back to me later,” with that he leaned in close gently pressed his lips against hers.

    “Sounds good,” she replied finally opening her mouth as their kiss became more heated and passionate. Only to be interrupted by the voice of thier life long friend, Gary Radcliffe.

    “Radcliffe to Headly.”

    They quickly and reluctantly broke their kiss, finally snapping out of that haze they were in due to the alcoholic influence. Charles while rubbing his neck, leaned against the dark, wood railing with the other hand. Amanda took a few steps over towards the lounge couches and kept her back to him. She needed to control herself a little more, to be professional for this communique.

    Tapping her comm-badge the chirp came sounding out, and then she answered with a bit of annoyance and disappointment in her voice, “This is Headly. Go ahead.”

    “Am I interrupting something, Admiral?” asked Gary curiously.

    “No...,” Amanda replied a tiny bit sombrely, “Not really. At least it's nothing that can't wait. Is there something wrong?”

    “We're not sure,” he answered uncertainly, “We seem to have lost all contact with C.N.C. Mister Delgado, his team and I are heading up there not to find out what's going on. Communications seem to be cut off at least, and internal sensors are being jammed by low level ionic-subspace fields. I won't lie, Amanda... it could very well be....”

    “I'll be right there,” she stated with seriously tone and she was indeed, one percent serious, at least she believed she was and quickly marched, a little clumsily towards the turbolift exit.

    Charles grabbed her arm and pulled her back, because he knew she was going out there in a almost blind, drunken rage. “Wait a second, Amanda. Neither of us are in any condition to go out there and deal with the situation. At least not like high-ranking Starfleet Officers. Right now we're too under the influence of real alcohol to do much good. We'll just get in the way.”

    “Let go of me me, Charles,” she demanded and tried to pull away from him. Charles held her there and looked her in the eyes seriously.

    “I'm your commanding officer!” she snapped. “Now... let. Me. Go.”

    “Amanda!” Charles suddenly raised his voice, snapping Amanda back to reality. It honestly was the first time he's ever done that in a long time, and from the look in their eyes they both knew it scared them both a bit. “Think. Or a least look at yourself in the mirror. You know you're not fit for duty right now. -Neither of us are. Gary can handle the situation for us. He's an Admiral after all isn't he?”

    “Yes...,” she relented after a long pause and putting everything into perspective, “You're right. But I should be there.... Oh why did I drink so much...?”

    “We weren't thinking then,” he said to her calmly, “But we have to keep our heads now.”

    “You're right,” she admitted and tilted her head back, closing her eyes gently as the small, dim lights still seemed to cause her pain. Tapping her comm-badge again she said, “Admiral Radcliffe. I'm afraid I won't be able to join you. Not yet. Can you handle it Gary?”

    “Sure, I can handle it. Are you alright, Admiral?”

    “Yes,” she answered quickly then added just as quickly, “More or less. I just had a little too much to drink.”

    “This time of day?” questeioned Gary of the comm-link.

    “It was a special occasion,” she explained and wanted to leave it at that. “Captain Gibson will be joining you though.”

    “Charlie's able to lend a hand?”

    Charles tried to tell her no by rapidly shaking his head while mouthing “No.”

    “Yes, he's holding his liquor quite well, better then I at least,” she replied, smirking in Charles direction and enjoying the futility of his situation. “He'll be there momentarily.”

    “Okay, we'll be standing by for a bit before we move in. We'll meet him in corridor delta-nineteen. Gary out.”

    “Amanda!” exclaimed the disgruntled, intoxicated Captain, “I in no condition to help them in this. You know that.”

    “Yes, but Doctor Song has something that'll help sober you up enough to not get your ass shot,” she informed her drunk, ex-husband, “Also, I out-rank you, Captain. But I don't want to say it's an order... but that doesn't mean I won't make it one.”

    “Okay, Admiral...,” replied Charles reluctantly, “I'll go do that. You just get some sleep then. You're obviously more out of it then I am.”

    “Obviously...,” she groaned, “Can already tell this is gonna be a bad one come morning.”

    “I'll get going...,” he said while moving towards the door, but turned back one more time to his almost hung over ex. “You get some rest. I'll check in when I can.” She just waved he off.

    Charles then walked into the turbolift and left.

    GS1: Storage Compartment 22.

    Renn quickly but carefully examined the mini-monitor and its connection to the open panel in the wall. From what she could tell the booby trap was that if you took off the monitor it'd self destruct, at least that's how it looked to her. Four mini-explosive charged lined the back of black-grey, rectangular screen, that was a little bigger then her hands. Tapping a button the screen's edge allowed her to switch between different video feeds, finally she came to the on fire Command and Control. Tara Renn's eyes widened in horror but once she realized there was movement by two officers, she was able to calm down, but not for long. The computer core was open and someone was inside it from what she could tell.

    “There you are you bastard...,” she muttered and quickly went over to a Jefferies tube on the lower part of the adjacent wall. Cracking it open the Bajoran Lieutenant came face-to-face with a full sized, Photon Torpedo. Staring at it for a whole two seconds, it then suddenly was covered in streams of blue energy before dematerializing away into thin air. “Damn,” she cursed, then realized maybe she could track it on that monitor. Just as she was about to go to it, the monitor shorted out with explosions of sparks all over the back of the device. “Damn... so much for that.”

    With that Renn gritted through the pain that throbbed in her side and started her way down the small, cramped, lengthy space of the Jefferies tube.

    GS1: Small Arms Armoury 285.

    A Jefferies tube hatch in a junction was swung open and crashed hard against the wall. Soon Lieutenant Renn toppled out onto the floor and staggered her way up towards one of the nearby weapons lockers in the large, rectangular, darkly lit armoury. Punching in her access code into the tiny, fifteen button combination lock, came a click and hiss. Stumbling to her feet, Renn was able to pry the door open, to take a look at what was in stock here. Thankfully there was an array of rifles, small and large, even compression variants. Hand phasers line the inner sides of the doors as well. At the bottom she spotted a few belts of three sonic grenades each. A smile formed across her lips and she quickly grabbed the one of the belts, tossing it over her shoulder. Next the twenty-eight year old Bajoran took off a regular phaser rifle that had chrome platting on the sides. Pulling the panel on the back open, charged the phaser coils, then she hit the power-setting button to arm it. Thoguh before she headed back into the tube, she strapped a hand phaser to her hip.

    Renn was ready for war now. All she hoped was to get a clear shot at the son of a gun, right between the eyes. Just one would be enough for her.

    GS1: C.N.C.

    Ba'lon continued his clearing of the debris as quietly and quickly as he could possibly go. T'Lea kept watching for any sudden movement of their guest coming out of the computer core. So far things were going good, though both of them wondered how long their good fortune would hold out. She looked over towards he friend as he attempted to move a broken bulkhead, easing it to the floor.

    Finally the Dalfian could reach the control panel and hesitantly typed in the release code, at least one he know. The button sounds were at least on low volume, though they did seem still a little loud for his liking. Holding his breath, Lieutenant Ba'lon continued with the unlocking and waited a moment before pressing the enter control. Turning to look to his friend, she gave him a nod and then just as he turned back to the wall safe... sparks exploded close to him, he trailed a red-orange, thin energy beam up to a man in a blue uniform jacket, with ridges all over his face.

    “I missed on purpose,” he explained loudly for both of them to hear, “That was warning shot. This isn't.”

    Suddenly a phaser beam struck Ba'lon in the left arm, though he was able to move out of the way, causing the super-heated death beam to graze him. Should rolling under a console, he evaded the next couple of shots as they exploded the glass, back-light console tops. T'Lea hid behind a nearby console, though across from her brutish, now more slightly more injure, colleague. Both of them were still able to make eye-contact with one another at least. Only cut off by the showering of sparks, caused by the Altered Man's constant phaser fire from the thin, emitter strip at the front of the weapon. Allowing him to fire in multiple directions without moving his wrist, just by programming in firing patterns.

    “You are only prolonging this minor conflict,” he said aloud, then pulled hte underside trigger and fired another volley of phaser strikes in their respective locations, “You have no weapons, no chance of escape. I know I'm coming off as a cheezy villain, but really. Do you want to play this game with me? You already know what I am capable of. Don't draw this out any further then it needs to be.”

    “Why did you kill all those people!?” exclaimed Ba'lon, almost grimacing from the pain in his pain and now the burning graze in his arm. Sadly for being a rock-like species, it wasn't doing much to dull the pain he was feeling He guess that was one characteristic most races shared... a reception to pain. Now if he could only get closer, he'd of clobbered this “D'motch-ta.”

    “Why does any revolutionary, terrorist, or radical do what they do?” the Altered man retorted, and fired another phaser blast towards Ba'lon.

    Sparks showered over him, causing the muscle bound, injured Dalfian to shield himself while cursing under his breath. He was indeed getting sick of this and started to move on out of cover, only for T'Lea to stop him with a raised hand. Lucky he noticed her gesture and hid back down, though then he saw the hand phasers she was holding. Quickly he gestured to her to toss him one and she did.

    “Well no matter, you're armed, this will get a little more interesting... until it becomes yet another waste of time.” The Altered Man stated and kept his eyes peeled for any sudden movement. “You won't be living long enough to understand what this is all about. But to be honest... I'm fine with that.” He fired again while walking towards the staircase, leading down to the level they two hiding Officer's were on.

    Suddenly T'Lea shot her own phaser, followed by Ba'lon as they did a quick draw, only to see the Altered Officer dodge both and fired from his unmoved hand, holding hte phaser. They managed to hide behind their cover not a moment too soon, but the consoles exploding certainly did little to comfort them. Until the sound of the main door forcibly being opened from the outside, on the other far end of the Command Deck, alerted both T'Lea and Ba'lon that backup was on the way.

    The Altered Man typed with his thumb on the four button strip on top of the hand phaser, a new firing pattern and increased the power level to maximum.

    Once the doors were slid open enough, Chief Lorenzo Delgado attempted to slip through only to be shot in the chest and completely vaporized into red-orange dust, until nothing remained. T'Lea saw it happen right before her eyes and when s he looked to Ba'lon, even he could see the distress emanating from her. Indeed that was a first for him to see her in distress, but honestly he couldn't blame her. Not in this situation anyways.

    Quickly he fired at the Altered Man, drawing away his and allowing more security officers to slip in, though some of them weren't as lucky. Out of the twelve that there were, not counting Admiral Radcliffe, only five managed to make it in. Radcliffe stayed behind the wedge opened doors, firing his phaser when he could, though missing just like the rest. T'Lea managed to nick the attacking, ridge faced Officer in the leg. Alas the attack did not stop, instead he increased his rate of firing while manoeuvring through the phaser beams coming at him in multiple directions.

    “What is this guy?” asked one of the aiding Security Officers, watching the enemy avoid being hit by three beams at once. Suddenly he was struck in the face by a the Altered Man's beam weapon and disintegrating into thin air, while screaming in pain until finally all there could be heard was phaser fire.

    GS1: Corridor Delta-Nineteen, Outside C.N.C.

    Gary kept himself in cover from the phaser beams that kept strafing his way, covering the door full of sparks every time they impacted. Sadly he had to watch the security team members disintegrate before his very eyes, one-by-one. First was a good friend he had gotten to know during his time here at G.S.1. Though they both knew someone had to get in and try to draw the fire away, they were expecting anyone to die on the first try. At least Gary didn't expect him to bite it that fast, but then in retrospect they probably assumed too much. Whoever or whatever this guy was, he was certainly no amateur in the field of combat.

    Holding back the urge to rush in himself, Gary did his best to return the incoming volley's with his own hand weapon. Though there were a few close calls when he peaked around to shoot, and still ended up missing. “Damn...,” he muttered under his breath. “Where are you Charlie boy... could use some help right about now...”

    Just then Charles came down the other side of the corridor, though he kept a hand along the railing closest to the grey, metal wall surrounding the Command and Control Deck. He caught his best friend's attention and they nodded to one another. Once he got to the doorway, he leaned up against the other side across from Gary. “What's the situation?”

    “Our mystery terrorist is going trigger happy against three of the security officers that are left, plus two other officers trapped inside from what I can see,” said Gary peering in through the gap of the doors. “Looks like Lieutenant Ba'lon and Lieutenant T'Lea. Both are being assigned to you... if they make it.”

    “Good, good...,” said Charles shaking off the effectsof that shot he got from Doctor Song on the way over.

    “You alright, Charles?” asked the older Admiral, gesturing to his close friend with a nod of. Honestly he was worried about him. “You seem out of it.”

    “I'll be alright, had to get a shot. It's... working... more or less,” replied Charles, not wanting to go into any further. “Now let's see if we can find a way of taking this guy out. Short of killing him. I think we all want some answers as to why he's doing this. Or what he's up to.”

    “Honestly Charlie boy, I rather throw him out the airlock right about now...,” admitted Admiral Radcliffe, but then he reluctantly added, “Though finding out what the heck is going on and why... I am a little too curious to pass that up, only see the life get sucked out of him and frozen in a vacuum.”

    Charles and Gary both shared a chuckle and then noticed something moving on the rafters above the battle taking place. Gibson was first to notice it was a woman in a grey, dirty and ripped tank top with a Phaser rifle slinged around her shoulder.

    “Who's that?”

    Gary squinted his eyes as best as he could and somehow made out the image of who it was, crawling along the beam. “Looks like Lieutenant Tara.... Delgado lost contact with her hours ago, had a search going but nothing came up.”

    “From the looks of her though,” said Charles then he looked to Gary, “I think we can tell why.”

    “Indeed, looks like she's been through hell.”

    “Maybe she was caught near destruction of the Docking Pod, there was some debris that struck a section of the station,” stated Charles, “Well then... let's give her some cover.”

    “Age before beauty,” jested Gary as he gestured with a hand for his best friend to go first. They both looked at one another and shared a quiet laugh.

    Charles then tapped his comm-badge, “This is Captain Gibson, concentrate your fire, Admiral Radcliffe and I are coming in. So cover us.”

    “But Captain, I do not believe you or the Admiral risking your lives is the appropriate action you should be taking,” came T'Lea's reply over the comm.

    “We'll be the judge of that, Lieutenant,” Admiral Radcliffe told her sternly, “You just follow your orders and cover our asses. We've been around this block many a time. We can handle our selves.”

    “Aye, aye, Admiral,” replied the Vulcan Science Officer disapprovingly.

    Once their conversation ended, Charles and Gary gave each other one more look. They both knew they were too old for this, and agree this could be very stupid. At least though, neither of them were trying to be the hero, all they were attempting to do was to give Lieutenant Tara some cover. Hoping it'd be enough to allow her to take her shot.

    “Ready....?” Captain Gibson asked his long time best friend, holding up a phaser in his right hand.

    “Ready as I'll every be, Charlie,” replied Admiral Radcliffe, a hint of uncertainty in his voice, though he quickly dismissed it and focused on the task at hand.
    GS1: C.N.C.

    Charles ran in and shoulder rolled under a phaser beam that nearly nicked him and hid under on console that took the next three shots that came his way. “That was close,” he said to himself, catching his breath and looking to see where Gary was.

    The Admiral did not make it much further, just a few feet from the doorway, hidden behind the arch-way was as close as he could get. Gary knew his limitations and did not dare to try and pull off what the Captain had just done. His body was already sore enough as it was and he didn't need to thrown his back out, trying to be a cowboy. “Was that necessary...!?” Gary called out.

    “The roll!?” Charles questioned back aloud, “Maybe not... but it was fun!”

    Radcliffe just shook his head disapprovingly and took a shot at the Altered Man, striking him in the hip. He watched the attacking alien stumble back a bit, and gestured to the middle aged Captain to look. Charles did so and noticed a bit of a limp to the assailant now that wasn't there before.

    “What did you set your phaser on?” he asked Gary, tapping his badge.

    “Near maximum stun,” replied the Admiral before taking another shot, though this time he missed and hid behind the archway as another phaser blast hit the front of it. Sparks flew all around him and forced him to stay out of sight for a bit. He definitely did not want to be next on the receiving end of that particle weapon anytime soon.

    “Got'cha,” muttered Charles as he set the phaser to maximum stun, typing away on the four button strip they all had. Then he turned and fired from out of cover and struck the Altered Man in the right shoulder, only forcing the terrorist to flinch back and stumble a bit. Though when the attacking Officer came back, he came back hard and fired constant volley's in multiple directions from the emitter strip without moving the weapon itself. Charles then figured he must be really fast to reprogram a different pattern so quickly. It made him question how they'd get another shot in and how it was possible that he just didn't finish them off yet.

    “What's he waiting for...?” wondered Charles, peering over the top of the console he hid behind, only to be forced back under it by an incoming beam of orange-red energy. Quickly peeking out to the side, Captain Gibson then fired his phaser again and struck the Altered assailant in the chest, making him stumble back a bit. Charles tapped his comm-badge again, “This is Captain Gibson. Everyone concentrate on his body. Chest. Stomach. I don't care.”

    Everyone else acknowledged the orders, and one after another quickly fired at different times, each one striking the bugger on the body somewhere. Once they figured he was staggered enough, they all came out and concentrated their fire on him from all angles. The Altered Man seemed to be backing up, edging closer to the opening of the computer core, arms wrapped tightly around his sides as the phaser beams hit him all over, like on big concentrated spotlight. What no one could see was that he was typing in another firing pattern and when they saw that he was about to fire—only Gibson, T'Lea, Ba'lon and Radcliffe managed to get behind cover. Two of the three remaining security Officers were vaporized, while the third lost his right arm, that held his weapon.

    The young Security Officer dropped to the grating and screamed out in agony as he felt cauterized stub where his arm used to be. The remaining higher ranked Officers could only watch as he had to suffer, until finally he too was fully taken out by another beam of energy from the assailant. It was at that point they attempted to shoot at the bastard again, just to find out he was ready and quickly kept them hidden from his sights as he fired another barrage.

    “I'm going to end this now,” stated the Altered Man coolly and confidently, “I have too much work that needs to be completed.”

    “Yeah... I bet you do,” muttered Gary as he attempted to fire only to jump back behind the archway as the console on the other side, exploded from return fire. “Damn... wish she'd hurry up.”

    Charles and T'Lea both fired striking the assailant in the shoulder again, and quickly returned to hiding as Ba'lon got in a good shot as well.

    “Captain, I believe he is getting weaker every time we hit him,” T'Lea informed Charles, looking in his direction. Charles quickly took another glance and quickly hid from incoming shot, with sparks showering down over him.

    “I think you're right. You two set your phasers to maximum stun, maybe we can tired him out faster.”

    “Aye Captain,” replied T'Lea hitting the correct buttons to increase the green light bar above it to full.

    “Aye, sir,” acknowledged Ba'lon as he did the same and they both fired again before taking cover quickly afterwards. More explosions going off from the incoming enemy phaser.

    The Altered Officer smirked and slowly took a few steps back as he prepared to make a running jump. Then out of the blue, three black with blue trimmed canisters landed before him. He froze and eyed them wondering what the heck they were. As the realization finally came to him his dark, piercing eyes when wide with confusion and fear. Quickly he tried to escape down into the open core but just as he turned the three grenades detonated! At first it felt like a flash-bang, minus the actual flash, but the constant, high-pitched ring was there. Though unlike a flash-bang this sonic ringing did not go away as quickly and the constant sonic waves that bombarded the Altered Man, made him hold the sides of his head and ears as he wailed back and forth. Scanning up above him he finally saw where the three grenades had come from, and prepared to shoot the upside down, hanging Bajoran.

    “You!” mouthed the Altered Man as his actual voice was snuffed out by the overlapping sonic-waves.

    Renn had her rifle ready and already pointed right for the bugger's head. She watched him wail about and slowly start to drop to his knees. The stunning feature of the non-lethal explosives was working pretty well from what she could see. Even allowed her self a small smirk while taking in a deep breath and holding it in, easing her finger against the trigger of the phaser rifle.

    Just was the assailant was about to pull the trigger on his hand phaser, a stray beam came out from behind the console where Gibson was hiding, and struck the weapon from the fake Officer's hand. The Altered Man didn't flinch or curse, he just went to pick it up again, never minding the fact that the maximum stun setting more or less acted like an EMP burst to the interior electronics, disabling the weapon from being used again, until it was repaired.

    Suddenly three bolts struck the Terrorist in the face and dropped him like a bad habit upon the grated floor, echoing a loud BANG. Since the sonic grenades finally dissipated, and all that could be heard now was the cracking of raging fires, the fire-suppression system hiccupping on and off, not being able to fully activate. Then there was the sparks that constantly burst out of impact points from phaser fire and damaged consoles and panels, showering down onto the grating and bulkheads as they fizzled out.

    Everyone slowly exited from their hiding places and stared at the fallen assailant laying on the upper level floor. Then each one of them glanced up at the rafters to find, Lieutenant Tara Renn dangling there from a behind with her legs, still holding the phaser rifle in her hands.

    “Nice shot,” said Charles.

    “Thank you, sir,” replied Renn, disengaging her rifle's power cell to standby and slinging it over her shoulder.

    Charles looked back over to the fallen enemy and wondered if he was dead... or just laying there, waiting to make a move and kill them all.

    Admiral Radcliffe walked up besides his old friend and then looked up towards the Bajoran Sharpshooter above. “Lieutenant Tara, if you're done hanging from the rafters, mind coming down here to help us take him into custody? Well after you get some medical treatment.” With that Gary tapped his comm-badge and ordered more security and med teams to the Command Deck.

    “With pleasure, Admiral,” stated Renn, eyeing the fallen menace that plagued the station for the last day or so. She didn't believe for a second that this was over yet though, not by a long shot. There was just something in her gut telling her so. She figured it was what humans called a “hunch”.

    Unknown to anyone but Renn, as she could see him clearly from her vantage point, the Altered Man laid there with a smirk upon his face...