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The Chains of Command 2 [PLOT]

Posted on Mon Jun 4th, 2018 @ 1:11pm by Lieutenant Commander Yumi Han & Captain Malcom Llwyedd & Lieutenant JG Soto Gantt & Ensign T'Sai & Crewman Keith Potter
Edited on on Tue Jun 5th, 2018 @ 9:08pm

Mission: Mission 3: The Galilei Conundrum
Location: Galilei - Bridge
Timeline: 26 June, 2394 - 0730 Hours

Continued from "The Chains of Command 1"

[ON]

Yumi cut a glance to the pile of bodies Potter had noted in his first scout of the bridge. She ground her teeth against losing her patience, and her knuckles whitened around her phaser. "Report to Sickbay with your crew, Captain T'Kirk. You cannot continue operations without medical clearance. Starfleet sent us to assume command until the doctors have checked everyone." All technically true.

T'Sai watched the tension rise, as she and Gantt had exited the Jeffries Tube. She turned her tricorder towards the so-called Captain,

"According to my scans, you are indeed suffering from the effects of the illness that has plagued your ship. I suggest that you follow the Commanders advice, it would be logical." She finished with the characteristic Vulcan eyebrow twitch.

"That is--Rrrr--impossible! I put this hazmat suit on for protection." Jane waved a hand under her face to indicate the spherical helmet sitting loosely atop her shoulders. Her command team fidgeted as their captain began to lose her cool.

"A very smart decision. We are also wearing protective clothing. You're crew is not as well equipped as you are, though." Yumi rested her left hand casually on her utility belt and flicked open a snap on the pocket beneath her palm. "They should see the EMH for a check up. Or we have a medical kit with us. Could we check their temperatures before you, uh, jump to warp?" Yumi cupped her fingers loosely, ready to quick draw the hypospray. Drugs were so much cleaner and quieter than phasers. The hypospray was loaded with the safest multi-species sedative approved by Starfleet Intelligence. Jane was relatively small. Yumi guessed her at 65 kilograms, tops. One dose should be enough...

Inching closer, Gantt reached a place where his fingers could just reach the screen. A section of one of the service areas was displayed with a schedule of some kind overlaid across part of it. He swiped it away and stepped back. The woman continued in her pantomime. Gantt thought she looked ready to topple over at his feet at any moment. Seeing that she did not react to him, he used one hand to look for the life support systems.

Jane T'Kirk paused at Yumi's suggestion. Either she was considering it carefully or blanking out for a minute. She grimaced and turned slowly to look back at Gantt. "What are you doing?" Her voice rose. "Only authorized perrrRR-- perrrR--" The Rs rumbled on in her throat, coarsening to sound like gravel pouring from a scoop. "Not you!" she barked.

The science officer bared her teeth at Gantt, all lethargy gone. Her claws struck across his suit visor like lightning. Gantt back-pedaled away from the sudden fury that transformed her. He managed to block an attack and wished he had kept the phaser in his right hand.

Yumi pulled the hypospray from her belt and pressed it to Jane's neck in one swift motion. She hugged her other arm around Jane's body and leaned the woman back as she went slack. Jane relaxed into a bag of water, and Yumi eased her to the ground. Yumi's phaser hand was still half curled around Jane when the bald pilot lunged at her from the helm.

Finally Potter thought and brought his arm up. He caught the thing trying to attack Lieutenant Han as it made a convulsing jump at her. His phaser strike, heavy stun, struck it in the jaw, snapping the thing's head back and tossing it against the helm. There was a strange sounds from the console, loud and piercing, and the entire console began to light up. Potter ignored it and turned to shoot at one of the other things near the coms station but he missed as the target flopped to the ground.

T'Sai, gripped the shoulder of the one in the Flight Control seat and they crumpled to the ground, spinning she drew her phaser to track any remaining crew on the bridge. Two more remained standing, both towards the back of the bridge, and neither did she have a clear shot at. She slid around to the side and then was able to drill a stun blast into the Bajoran that was to the right.

Putting his back to the wall, Gantt saw an infected crewman reaching for him. He snapped off a shot that, to his surprise, just caught the man on his hip and knocked him back. Gantt turned around to scan the rest of the deck. He did not hear the infected crewman get back up.

Potter swept his phaser across the bridge, looking for any standing target. Finding none, she shot the largest of the downed enemies, who was trying to rise. The phaser hummed and struck the man in the back, forcing him to the ground where the lay unmoving.

"Looks like we've got the bridge, commander," Potter said, holstering his phaser.

Breathing deeply on adrenaline more than from exertion, Yumi smiled at her three Firebird crewmates. They had quieted the infected attackers with near perfect expedience. Gantt looked a little shaken, but his suit was undamaged.

"I don't know why they were so aggressive, but everyone stay on guard for more angry locals. Potter, check vitals on the five that attacked us and bind them at the wrists and ankles. I don't want them to jump us again when they wake up. T'Sai and Soto, see what you can do with these controls." Yumi kept her phaser handy, pointed at the ceiling in a two-handed grip. She circled the Galilei command stations and surveyed the bridge for latent threats. Once Potter secured the infected command team, he could have her back on a tour of the rest of the bridge.

As T'Sai sat at the helm controls she tried to call up anything. Even with the ship on emergency power and nothing being reported to the helm, she should have been able to begin looking over some of the settings, but the console was dead black. She pulled her tricorder and tried to make sense of it. After a moment of scanning and fiddling she called to Gantt,

"Ensign Gantt, Can you assist me with this console? It appears to be completely disconnected."

"No problems are showing up in the system," said Gantt. He walked over to T'Sai. The ship did not respond to any of her controls. With a sigh, Gantt lowered himself to the floor. Inside the console everything looked neat, clean and operational. Top quality components. Nothing even one cycle behind the latest. "I'm not getting any errors in the... hold on." Cleverly disguised as a row of capacitors was a device that did not belong on a vessel this expensive.

"We've got some kind of blockage." Removing the device, Gantt saw that it was burned out from the inside. Whatever it was meant to do, he doubted the crew had known about it. Pocketing the electronic to give to Yumi later, Gantt reattached the navigational controls. "We're functional. Nothing should combust as long as we don't stress the system. I'll keep working on it. Try not to kick me."

Yumi pushed the hail button on her suit's wrist controls. =^=Han to Firebird. Captain, we have the bridge. A group of infected passengers or crew attacked when we tried to check their health. They had that same green rash we saw on Captain Kagawa in his distress call.=^=

=^=Well done, commander. Keep me informed and let me know if anything changes. We've picked up a sensor reading that bears closer examination once the Galilei is under control.=^=

=^=Aye, sir.=^= Yumi closed the comm link and made a second patrol circle.

Potter went about his task as ordered. He was able to drag all of the "crew" to one of the flying bridges, lining them up like fallen trees. He made sure they were all bound as tightly as possible without causing any damage. It took him a good twenty minutes and by the end he was getting really tired of the suit. "All done, commander," He said, wishing he could wipe the sweat from his face but one look at the consequences quelled the urge.

"Good work. Let's--" Lost for a polite turn of phrase, she simply canted her head toward the front of the long bridge. Her eyes pinched grimly. "Let's check the so-called waiting area." Expecting Potter to fall in, Yumi walked the long plank toward a tangled heap of uniformed limbs and torsos. Sailor hats littered the floor around them like funeral wreaths.

Yumi reached for the top body and rolled him toward herself. She caught him under his arms with a grunt. Potter moved instinctively to grab the discolored man by the knees. Together they moved him up the walkway where he could lie down flat. Yumi checked his vitals with her spy-corder, and her lips thinned. She reached over his face to close his vacant, green-tinted eyes. Her eyes flicked to his name tag. Then back to the motionless pile of his comrades. "I think this is the real bridge crew. We'd better check them all."

Exchanging few words, Han and Potter laid out the dead in a morbid but respectful line. After each flatline on her spy-corder, Yumi ran facial recognition on the bodies. Their results matched against the the Galilei manifest uploaded in her hazmat suit, and she referenced each name to the name tag on their uniform. The work was numbingly physical, and when tears stung at the back of her eyes from imagining who someone had really been--child? parent? partner?--she drilled her thoughts back into the present with slow, stiff breaths.

[1000 Hours]

After Gantt fixed the flight controls, he left T'Sai to dink with the few systems available to her and made sure each of the other bridge stations would be in good shape when Lieutenant Nema got power back online.

Standing behind the captain's chair, Yumi leaned on the high back, and looked around for something to do. Potter, Gantt, and T'Sai each sat at their posts, joking about who had the least functional work station. The engineering team had checked in shortly after they secured the bridge. The science and security teams had called in steady progress chasing down the nature of the contagion and its source. And the medical team had sent Kalstri to haul T'Kirk and her infected crewmates off to sickbay.

Yumi started another patrol around the bridge to occupy her legs when a voice cracked over their commbadges. =^=Nema to Yumi. Power is starting to come back up. Are you in position?=^=

=^=Nema! This is Han. We're ready on the bridge. Can you send some of that power our way? We've been drifting deeper into the Badlands since we got here. I'd like to know our heading so T'Sai can be ready to get us out of here the minute engines come online.=^= Yumi looked out the ostentatious windows encasing the T-shaped bridge where forks of red lighting flashed. Whirling columns of gas were a family of storm giants sitting at a table to make dinner of the Galilei.

=^=Understood Commander. Starting to feed power now. Warp power, and navigation first, and the rest will follow.=^=

=^=Prioritize impulse engines over the warp core, if it's faster. I'd rather limp out of here now than make a hard jump to warp speed after a delay. Whatever gets us moving.=^=

=^=Understood sir.=^=

T'Sai sat at the helm console in anticipation of the restored power. As systems started to com back on, she danced her fingers across the controls.

Navigation came up and T'Sai began a quick scan of the area. They had drifted now to the edge of the Badlands, and there was a plasma storm that was raging only a few hundred kilometers behind them. Soon impulse flashed that it was ready, and T'Sai got the big bird back under some control.

"Helm now answering all stop." She stated as she began to regain control of the ship.

The ship lurched as some pocket of gas collided with the side of the ship. Harmless, but in the current environment it set her teeth on edge. The ship was slowly moving now.

"We are under power and moving out of the Badlands, one quarter impulse at the moment, and moving up as we are able."

Yumi stepped up behind T'Sai and placed a hand on the corner of her pilot's chair, staring straight ahead at the lightning-lanced path T'Sai had chosen. It looked like a Sunday stroll through verdant foothills compared to the tempest behind them. "Aft shields up, if you have them, Mr. Potter. Lieutenant Soto, what kind of shape are we in?"

Potter flopped into one of the chairs. The console looked like it was made for a kid's game. It was brightly colored and had lots of graphics but some of them were ridiculous, like the one that was apparently monitoring the usage rate on holodecks. He found the controls for Ship Systems Close Protection, and accessed it. "Looks like this tub has some shields, ma'am but they are mainly used to stop asteroids and stuff. No idea how they would hold up to real combat," Potter said and then tapped the aft shields up. The low power mode was still affecting things but eventually they came online. "Aft shields at sixty percent."

Now that work was involved Gantt found the suit confining. Normal muscle memory had to slow down to account for the restrictive bulk. On the other hand, the screens looked like they were built for a novice training program with larger than normal icons and simplified controls. Gantt decided he hated it. "Overall the ship is in good shape. Almost one hundred percent of normal. It appears the air circulation system is in recycle-only mode. Ambient temperature on the ship is set to four degrees above normal."

"Finally, some good news." Yumi's lip quirked in a half-grin. "Nema's team can wrangle the ventilation systems back to spec. Ensign T'Sai, get us out of this storm."

T'Sai pointed the luxury liner further out of the maelstrom of the Badlands and engaged impulse at full. "We are under power and headed out of the Badlands. Setting course for rendezvous with the Firebird."

[OFF]

Captain Malcom Llwyedd
Commanding Officer
USS Firebird NCC-88298



Lieutenant Commander Yumi Han
Executive Officer/Chief Intelligence Officer
USS Firebird NCC-88298



Lieutenant Kedra Nema
Chief Engineering Officer
USS Firebird NCC-88298



Lieutenant Junior Grade Soto Gantt
Structural/Environmental Specialist
USS Firebird NCC-88298



Ensign T'Sai
Assistant Chief Flight Control Officer
NPC (by Kedra Nema)

Crewman Keith Potter
Security Officer
NPC (by Captain Llwyedd)

 

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Comments (1)

By Petty Officer 3rd Class Max Tragar on Fri Jul 6th, 2018 @ 9:20am

Again, fabulous rising tension throughout.