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Time's Up, Part II

Posted on Sat Jan 20th, 2024 @ 2:23pm by Captain Freya Mannerheim & Subcommander Kaiae t'Lien & Centurion Nancy Gable & Sublieutenant Povis l'Nek & Major Ashley Rogers & Lieutenant (Junior Grade) Ashix Zirda

3,193 words; about a 16 minute read

Mission: Chapter VII: Into the Storm
Location: Ourainavassa
Timeline: 238704.31

"All hands, battle isn't won yet. Prepare to receive boarding party!"


Captain Ash Rogers and what remained of her crew beamed into strategic areas of their foes' ship. She tapped her comm badge, sending an encrypted message to her compatriots, "Keep them deaf and blind." The crew of this vessel were at an advantage. This is... soon to be "was"... their ship and they know it far better than her people do. Making sure communications and internal sensors remain down was her best chance at success.

---

"Captain!" Mila's voice was filled with growing panic as she called out again from the tactical station. "Internal sensors and comms are down! I'm attempting to fix it, but I have no idea what they did! That call of yours was the last thing that went through."

"Helm is not responding either!" Miles frantically tapped commands into his console, with no response.

Captain Mannerheim checked her own controls in the side armrest of the command chair. Shields were still online, as was life support, external sensors and weapons. However, communications and propulsion had been shut down. "I have no idea how they did it, but this is a classic Terran boarding tactic. Make sure your target can't escape or call for help."

Shaking her head, she grabbed her katana, which she had put down next to the chair, and attached it to her belt. "Lock down the bridge. Lieutenant Zirda, Subcommander, Lieutenant Lynn, try to re-establish internal sensors and communications, that has to be our first priority. Lock down any access points to the bridge. The rest of you, arm yourselves and be ready. They will head here, and they will try their hardest to get in. Lieutenant Lynn, were you able to get a read on numbers?"

Mila shook her head as she began trying to reboot communications. "Unfortunately, no, sir. All I know is that there are many of them."

Lieutenant Ashix Zirda was busily working on the Systems Control console - the Romulan equivalent of the Operations Management station - trying to reestablish communications and sensors. The ex-Borg was struggling to navigate through the varied systems of the ship, being blocked from getting very far by multiple failsafes that made no sense. She typed quickly, wishing that she still had the more pronounced Borg appendages that gave her a better interface with computer technology. She was no slouch without them, but this was harder than she anticipated.

One hand working her console, Kaiae's other hand reached down under her tunic and triggered the device she had rigged up to communicate directly with Hatham, bypassing the main relays entirely. Unfortunately, it failed to connect a voice channel, or even a data one, but the failure itself was another piece of information that agreed with some of the rest of what she was encountering in her unsuccessful attempts to restore main comms. "They're jamming us, using some sort of device inside our shield perimeter. Probably inside our hull, even. It's going to be damn near impossible to overcome that quickly until we can take out whatever the hell they brought with their boarding party that's doing it."

Ashix had been listening, absently, to what was being said by Kaiae as she worked on her own workstation trying to overcome the interference that was being emitted. She typed on the interface of her station, trying to determine a generalized location of the device that was blocking the communications frequencies. The alien woman sighed as she looked at the details being provided. "I have to be honest that it's hard to localize the position of whatever it is that they're using. I'm working on it now though."

The Captain sighed. "I know the Terran tricom badges have short-range jamming capabilities, but I doubt that they would work on this kind of scale. They can mask life signs, but, again, we can't even see our own people on the internal sensors." She reached into her pocket and pulled out her Terran badge, tossing it over to Mila and Povis. "Science department, you're up. See if you can figure something out. In the meantime, Subcommander, if you have any other way of getting hold of our security teams, now is the time."

The Sikaran had been busily inputting information on the terminal when she heard the Captain's comments. She glanced over at the scientists, "If they're using similar components to that badge we could, just maybe, use it to our advantage. We could potentially create a dampening field that would block their signals and we could use to get ours through."

---

Perez looked at the others in the armoury and shook their head as the Captain's call came through the intercom. "Bastards, they must have figured out our shield frequencies and decided to use us as an escape pod."

They tapped their badge. "Armoury to bridge, how many?"

No response came. "Bridge, respond! Mila, Captain, Subcommander! Anyone there?"

Povis heard the overhead command, and turned to the others. "What's happening?" He asked. He reached for his own Comms badge. =/\=Captain?=/\= Nothing.

"I don't have comms, either," he reported. What now?

"Guess we're on our own initiative," Hatham said, pulling more weaponry from the armory and handing it out. "We need to move, but let's not leave them anything they use. I trust the bridge to hold for now, but we'll need to keep them from engineering and auxilliary control."

"Yes, I agree. Let's go," Povi said, to Hatham.

Perez twirled their short swords, before sheathing them on their back and grabbing a plasma rifle. "Let's get those Terrans off our ship."

---

Sari, the young Orion engineer, was rushing around main engineering, collecting reports on the status of various systems. The sudden loss of internal communications and sensors had thrown everyone into a minor panic. As she finally returned to her station, she spotted the ex-Borg, Five of Eight, nearby. "Five! Go lock down the door, the Captain said board-"

She was cut short by a phaser blast narrowly missing her, glancing off her console, as the door burst open, revealing a number of heavily-armed Terrans storming the room. Immediately, those engineers who carried sidearms began returning fire, with everyone else dodging into cover. Sari reached for her own pistol and shot a disruptor beam towards the attackers, before quickly hitting the alarm button on her console. Hopefully, someone would get the alarm and interpret it correctly.

---

Perez turned around when an alarm chime rang out from the ship status display on the wall. "An alarm in engineering? Well, seems like that part of the communications still works! We better get moving!"

Povis was desperately working on trying to get systems back online, reroute power to avoid fires AND keep himself alive. He heard the alarm from the Bridge. =/\=On my way=/\= came the young man's reply. He hurried quickly upstairs, phaser drawn at the ready.

"That was from engineering, not the bridge! Wait!", Perez shouted after Povis as the Romulan ran out of the door. They looked at the others. "I wasn't that bad when I was new, surely?" With a sigh, they hurried after the newly-promoted science officer.

"Guess that means we get engineering," T'Ango said, flashing a grin at Hatham and her Rogers. "You take the low road," she wedged the cover off an air vent, "And I'll take the high road," she half-sang as her tail disappeared into shaft.

Hatham eyed the vent opening. "Felinoids. Come on, I'd hate to miss the expressions when she lands on someone's head."

---

Kaiae gave another glance over at the work Ashix was doing, then towards the currently secured - but potentially breachable - entrance to the bridge, and stood. "Let me know if you manage to punch through." She drew her disruptor, then gestured to Seira, who was sitting at the navigation and secondary flight console and stood and drew hers as well, both women taking up positions to either side of the door with a good line of sight and fire at anyone who might come through...but enough distance to hopefully not be an immediate victim of any charges used to do so.

Freya glanced at Kaiae. "Good thinking there, Subcommander." She turned to the two young women trying to get communications running again. "Any progress?"


Before Mila could reply, there was a loud bang from the corridor leading towards the bridge, followed by sounds of shouting in Rihannsu and English, and then weapons fire. The Captain grabbed the katana hanging off one of the armrests of her chair and moved towards the doors. "You two, keep working on getting things back up. Everyone else, positions. They're coming."

"Doing my best," the Sikaran answered as her fingers raced over the interface. As the emerald green, teal, and blue controls on the interface glowed, Ashix wondered if she would be able to penetrate the defenses of the enemy force. Their technology was advanced, but nothing was infallible. Working at the information, she looked for any pattern that they could use to their advantage. She sighed as she scrolled, but had a moment of inspiration. Opening a particular dataset that appeared she began running a specialized algorithm that she remembered almost as if it were from the traces of a dream. Her fingers input the sequence and ran the program, "I think I broke their dampening field!"

Mila sighed. "Not quite, but almost. We have communications again, but the internal sensors are still down."

The moment she finished speaking, the intercom came alive. "This is Sari, down in engineering, we have boarders, please, someone, come help!"

Kaiae's hand clenched somewhat tighter - hopefully unnoticed - around her disruptor, for at the moment, she had no one to send.

"I'll see what I can do about the sensors," Ashix was happy that she'd been able to penetrate the communications dampening field, but regretted she wasn't able to break through enough to restore the internal sensors. Bringing up the screens on her panel again, the Sikaran resumed typing as she tried to gain entry. She hoped that the crew were able to overcome the boarders in Engineering though. That was a tremendous concern.

"You get a chance to take everything down and thereby deprive them of whatever they might have comms and scanning wise, take it, even if it also knocks out ours again. If everyone is lacking; I'd rather be the crew who knows the ship at that point than the boarders." Kaiae called to Ashix, then caught the notice of a younger crewman on the periphery of the bridge an made an indication to her to go guard the Sikaran from any attack. It was, as she expected it might be, about the last thing she got the chance to say or do before the Terran breaching charges blew the sealed doors to the bridge open.

The Systems Officer nodded at the direction, "I could overload the ship by flooding it with thoron radiation. It's not toxic, actually it has some health benefits, but it would have the impact of blocking communications, sensors, pretty much everything. If you want me to go that route it is," the alien woman said from the computer console, her fingers maneuvering through the menu options debating if she wanted to deploy this as a weapon.

---

Captain Rogers and several Terrans made their way to engineering. She nodded to one of her men, "Disable as much access from the bridge as you can... they may be in command, but a ship is nothing without Engineering." She turned the corner and sneered at the Crewman named Sari as she fired her disruptor at the intercom, sending sparks flying everywhere.

"You shouldn't have done that... now you just made my life harder," she said raising her disruptor at Sari.

Out of nowhere, Renee came out of nowhere and tackled the Terran to the ground. Renee looked at Sari, "Run!" before turning her attention to Rogers. "You're not my Ash, but damn, you two think alike."

"You and I could have had something, Renee..." Rogers said as she struggled to get up.

Renee threw a punch that landed solidly, knocking the Terran back to the ground, "I'll have to learn to live with your disappointment...."

Spitting the blood pooling in her mouth at Renee, the taller and stronger Rogers, using the distraction, pushes Renee off of her and bolts away from Engineering.

Wiping her face, Renee yells out, "She's probably heading to the armory next."

One of the remaining Terrans, spun to silence her, permanently, only to fall as a plasma bolt splatter his skull. An instant later, an angry ball of fur and claws landed on the remaining Terran and literally ripped his throat out.

"Seal the doors, and someone cover the vents," T'Ango ordered. "If that one is anything like our Ash, she may try to get back that way."

---

Meanwhile, Major Ashley Rogers looked at Hatham when she heard the call that the armory is her counterpart's next stop. "Do we even have anything left there that's worth trying to get?" Ash furrows her brow... what would she do in this situation...

Hatham smiled. "Nothing but the trip charge I left on the couple remaining flash-bangs. If she's heading for the armory, we'll know soon enough."

---

Perez had just caught up with Povis, when the message about the Terrans' next target came through. "Hey! Get into cover!", they shouted at the Romulan, before tapping their badge. "Perez to everyone, I am quite familiar with this tactic. They're looking to hit as many places on the ship as possible, to create maximum chaos. We need those internal sensors back!"

Just as they finished speaking, two Terrans - science officers, judging by their uniforms - rounded the corner, and immediately opened fire. "Kuso!," Perez exclaimed as they ducked, immediately drawing their plasma rifle and returning fire. "Povis, either return fire, or run!"

---

Captain Mannerheim only had a second to think as the bridge was shaken by the Terrans' breach charge. Immediately, she tapped her badge. "Bridge is under attack!," she shouted, before drawing her standard-issue Terran phaser bolt pistol and opening fire into the haze left by the detonation.

Just as the Captain began to shoot, Mila let out a triumphant yell. "Internal sensors partially restored, we can see everything below deck eight!" She groaned. "All that tells us, though, is that the enemy is only on decks one through eight. Still, thirteen decks we won't have to worry about!"

Suddenly, Miles let out a surprised shout. "Another ship detected, Klingon Bird-of-Prey with a singularity drive! Just appeared out of nothing!"

---
Terran Rogers soon appears in med bay and proceeds to start indiscriminately firing. "One can only fight drawn out battles if they can heal their wounded," she chuckles.

"Excuse me, Major... what is the meaning of this..." said a swarmy Romulan voice.

The Terran laughed. "Oh, you can't tell the difference between your Rogers and me? I thought you were the best doctor in the quadrant," she said as she knocked poor Kaol unconscious with a single punch.

"I can!" Gable yelled as she swung for Rogers' head, her bat'leth missed decapitation as the Terran dodged but tore a gash across her cheek. "baQa'!" she swore, spinning for another swing even as she drew a disruptor with her other hand, ready to destroy the bIHnuch who'd attacked her medbay by every means at her disposal.

Initially Gunnar had used the distraction to dash close enough to check Kaol, but he saw murder in Nancy's eyes, and not just the normal death glare he was used to, but actual Klingon-blood-up murderous rage. Worse, Terran Rogers clearly had no compunction about firing on medics and decidedly more skill at murder. Everyone else had (probably wisely) taken cover, so as he saw both women raising disruptors he threw himself at Terran Ash, tackling her from the side, which threw her shot wide of Gable. Unfortunately, Gable's shot went right through where Ash's chest had been a moment before, scoring Gunnar's side instead.

"Helvitis!" Not only did that sting but the shock of it made him lose his grip, so while he was substantially larger than Rogers, as they came down in heap, mass was his only advantage.

That fact was plain to Gable as well, who sprang toward them, determined to take Rogers out before the big blonde pacifist could gather his wits and try to stop her.

Terran Rogers anticipated the presence of Gable and she knew she'd be in for a fight. But for now she had the advance of a wounded nurse as a potential hostage. The Terran dug her fingers into the wound in his side, causing him yelp in pain. Using him as leverage, she got to her feet, holding her disruptor to his head.

"ENOUGH," she barked as she glared at Gable and her bat'leth. "Whatever happened to you doing no harm? You are such a hypocrite... Is his life worth it to you? Is his life worth defending a traitor to the Terran Empire like Mannerheim?" Terran Rogers chuckles in disbelief. "All of you are willing to take up arms against me.... when all I am doing is my duty to MY Empire! How did I become the one that is wrong?"

"I didn't vow to do no harm," Gable growled, not lowering her disruptor. "And if you harm that overgrown boy scout, I'll prove it. This isn't about Mannerheim or your precious Empire. YOU came into MY medbay and started shooting."

Arnason sucked breath. "Nancy..."

Ignoring him, Gable kept her focus on Rogers. "Someone's hit our silent alarm to alert security by now and you're holding a disruptor on the only conscious person here who'd bother to try to keep you alive." She held her position but rotated the bat'leth back so the long grip lay along her arm like a bladed wing. "You have one chance: Let him go and leave, or today will be a good day for you to die."

The Terran chuckled, "I have to admire your devotion to moral code and your loyalty to those you work with. I admit, I was wrong to shoot this place up. I apologize. But you have to understand my perspective ans... desperation. This isn't my universe, i have no where to turn. And..." she shrugged, "I may be to blame."

Rogers lets go of Gunnar, "As an act of good faith... here is your Boy Scout. Perhaps we can work out a compromise for me to get out of your hair and me to bring Mannerheim to justice?"

Gunnar stumbled forward as he was released, and Gable cursed at how he somehow managed to block her shot even wounded. Side-stepping with a small advance to get the big blonde annoyance behind her, she got Rogers back in her sights. "I'm not Mannerheim's biggest fan, but she's more trustworthy than you. In fact, her worst trait so far is not being enough of a weasel to keep playing you and -"

=/\= Intruder alert, Medbay =/\=

Continues in Part III...

 

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