Launch

Featuring the NPCs:
TheFates.png - The Fates
usher-1.jpg - Usher Tenanji

Originally Posted by Torrik Nils/02-16-2009 11:10:05 AM

:: USS Chimera ::
:: Bridge ::

“Report,” Nils said, slowing emerging from his Ready Room. His gaze fell to Jezera at Ops.

“All stations indicate readiness, and we are green lit from Deep Space Nine,” she answered heartily.

“Clear all moorings prepare for departure,” the Bajoran Captain said as he settled into his chair. Once seated, he jiggled a little from side to side trying to get used to the new center seat. It didn’t quite fit like Hawking’s. Quirking his head to the side, and with great hope that this was not an omen, Nils continued. “Release docking clamps and signal DS9 that we are prepped and ready for launch.”

“Aye sir,” Jezera said as she worked in conjunction with Warof who sat directly next to her at the helm.

Suddenly and without preamble three photonic women appeared on the bridge virtually simultaneously. “I love this part,” said Atropos as she stepped into the pit and stood over Warof’s shoulder.

“Welcome to the bridge,” Nils said, somewhat taken aback. Already nursing a quiet distrust of holographic technology made getting used to these ship ‘avatars’ quite a challenge.

“Isn’t that my line,” said Lachesis with a smile and kind wink in Nils direction.

Clotho watched with a hard stare and didn’t move from where she’d materialized. “There is a slight pressure imbalance persisting in airlock two,” she said casting a judgmental look in Nils' direction.

Before he could answer Atropos interjected, “How slight Clotho?”

The steady and cold stare of the ship’s life support interface projection slid from Nils to her sister. “Very slight,” she answered. “I thought the Captain might like to know.”

“Thank you,” said Nils jumping in. He then looked to Jezera, hoping she could confirm the photonic’s report.

“There is a discrepancy, but the seal is solid and it will pose no risk to the ship. Probably just didn’t equalize fully when we disengaged from the station,” she explained.

“Probably,” Nils agreed. “But send a team to have a look and let’s get under way.”

Though she didn’t smile, Clotho seemed pleased by the decision and turned her attention to the view screen.

“This is exciting,” Lachesis said moving closer to the Captain’s chair. She shrugged her shoulders and arched her eyebrows as she put her hand on his fore arm.

A little uncomfortable, Nils continued. “Helm, one quarter impulse and move us away from the station, bearing 127 mark 4.”

“Aye sir,” answered Warof. “127 mark 4.”

“Bridge to engineering… Javi, how are those engines looking,” called Nils, anxious to get a feel for their new ship.

=/\= Running like momma's new vacuum cleaner on the first day of Spring! =/\= returned Costala’s disembodied voice. Lachesis eyebrows climbed her forehead, Clotho rolled her eyes, and Atropos actually laughed out loud.

“I guess that means we’re ready to go,” commented Nils. “Increase to full impulse and hold course,” he called out. The tension on the bridge mounted and anxious excited faces beamed one to another. The bright and pristine bridge pulsed with life as the ship accelerated out of the system.

A sudden pang of fear stung Nils from out of nowhere. Regardless of the excitement around him and the exhilaration evoked by the Prometheus class vessel, self doubt still plagued him. In truth, he had no idea what he was taking the ship into. The crew truly would live or die based on even one syllable he uttered incorrectly. And the stark reality of command fell on him one more time. He almost froze…

Glancing around the bridge he took a moment to reflect on each individual, even the Fates. The unknown ahead of them gave him pause and he had an intense desire to return to the safety of the station. The doubt persisted until his eyes fell to the ship’s dedication plaque and the inscription it bore.

‘If it be not now, yet it will come: the readiness is all.’

Nodding in agreement with the ship’s sentiment, Nils returned his attention to the viewscreen. “Set course for Iota Draconis Prime, maximum warp…”

“Aye aye, sir,” Warof said enthusiastically. “Course set.”

The corners of his mouth curled up in a smile and Nils said, “Engage…”

On his word, the USS Chimera escaped the bounds of normal space and exploded into warp, leaving behind a streak of ionized particulate before it vanished in a burst of brilliant light.

Featuring the Fates - And a cameo by Javier Costala


Originally Posted by Tatiana Thorne/02-16-2009 11:52:40 AM

USS Chimera
Deck 4, Thorne Quarters

Stephanie ran up to Tatiana, and put her arm around her friend’s shoulders. “Hey there, have I ever told you how much of a great friend you’ve always been?”

“What do you want?” She asked suspiciously as she entered her quarters.

“Nothing, nothing,” Stephanie assured her before following her in. She walked over to the bed, flopped down, and closed her eyes.

Tatiana frowned, seeing exactly why the woman was laying compliments at her feet, “Get up, this isn’t a hotel, you have your own room.” She swatted her friend’s boot, and sat down at the foot of the bed.

“I was paired with Tommy again,” she spoke darkly from her position. “I had just gotten off, and when I walked in, the place was already a mess, she hasn’t finished unpacking. So, I figured-”

“You figured you would hang out here until she finally puts her shit away, right?”

The Sensor Technician nodded, “Pretty much.”

Even after switching to a new ship, things were already shaping out to remain the same. Tommy would continue to irk Stephanie with her mess, and in turn Stephanie would bother Tatiana for a little time in a clean space. As much as an annoyance as it was, the normalcy of it was comforting. Thorne stood, “Okay then, I’m going to check out the Primary Sickbay, you can stay here until I get back. After that…”

“I know, I know.”

Deck 7, Primary Sickbay

“Oh this is beautiful,” she whispered gleefully as she entered Sickbay. It was spacious and sleek; the aesthetics far beyond the Hawking’s in her opinion, the colors were a welcoming change from the dull gray that seemed to cover every inch of their former working space.

Tatiana looked around Sickbay to see some of the department helping to put away equipment. She wasn’t on duty, but seeing the new medical department’s digs was first on her agenda post-unpacking. She wasn't disappointed, it was everything she had hoped it would be.

She noticed Getty walking towards the exit and she waved, “Hey, Luke, how’s it going?”

“Lieutenant,” Luke returned in greeting before stopping, “I’m fine. I took care of your friend, by the way, the one in Operations. She's an interesting character.”

“You did? Thanks,” she sighed in relief, “Tommy had one too many glasses of Trakian Ale in the spirit of ‘celebration’,” Tatiana completed with air quotes.

“I could tell,” he responded. “I’m going to go, have a good day.”

She smiled, “Will do, thanks again.” Before he could leave completely, “Hey wait, what’s this I hear about a big mission coming up?” Tatiana caught his expressed disapproval and shook her head, “Never mind, I forgot who I’m talking to. See you later.”

Once the doors shut behind Luke, she closed her eyes, wanting the image of the practically untouched Sickbay to remain ingrained in her memory. They never quite looked the same to her after its first big tragedy.

Featuring: Stephanie Hall & Luke Getty


Originally Posted by Harry Finn/02-16-2009 10:58:27 PM

::USS Chimera::
::First Officer's Quarters - Deck 2::

He'd made it from deck fourteen to deck two in record time, only realizing as he approached his new quarters that, beyond dropping his limited kit upon arrival and changing for the run, he'd spent nil time in the new digs. This was pointed up even further upon entering a main room filled to bursting with…

"Plants?" Harry stepped back into the corridor to check the number on the door but, no… 222… right room, just the wrong interior decorator. Re-entering, he maneuvered through a series of broad-leaved subtropical specimens to find, sitting meekly on his desk a very small and decrepit-looking bonsai.

"Seldon…" Harry shook off his annoyance at the doc's ill-timed revenge and dug his commbadge out of the desk, where he'd ditched it before attempting to run off the mad which was now just that much closer to a boil; a boil that began to run over the sides of the pot as the telltale thrum of Chimera's engines indicated an imminent departure… over an hour early. Dammit!

A quick check to the bridge indicated that, yes, they were departing DS9 and, yes, it had been at S'Van's urgings and, no, Finn wasn't required at this time.

Fine… whatever. He returned to the original issue. "Finn to T'Shaini… I need your assist on… a consult… in fifteen."

===

Arriving promptly, as was her wont, T'Shaini smiled at the lush greenery that filled Harry's quarters. "What prompted this?"

Harry, freshly showered and in uniform, peered around a trunk, "There was… a thing… with Seldon. I kinda got the kids to play a few, totally harmless, practical jokes on him and this is his idea of payback. Anyway…"

"I am not surprised. It is of a piece with the type of behavior you have always exhibited," a cool, feminine voice interrupted. The newly manifested hologram looked at T'shaini, "When he was first posted on Chimera, he etched his initials beneath the tactical console on the tertiary bridge."

"You're never gonna let that go, are you," Harry asked between tightly grit teeth before forcing a smile at the unforgiving features of Chimera's operations interface, "Clotho, I'd like you to meet We… Commander T'Shaini," remembering at the last moment Clotho's complete lack of whimsy.

T'Shaini took in the adjustment from Harry as well as the features of the woman that would make the Vulcan's father proud. Eschewing the handshake for a businesslike nod, the counselor greeted the second of the three avatars on board. I hope this proceeds better than the last. "Clotho, good to meet you."

Returning the respectful obeisance, Clotho again looked to the Chimera's new XO. Harry wasn't sure but he thought she might have shuddered a bit as she did, "I fail to comprehend the necessity of this meeting, no disrespect intended," always well-mannered, the holographic personality added for T'Shaini's benefit.

"Clotho, I understand that the… gaps.. in your communications cache are… disturbing," Harry threw a look to Wendy. "The Counselor may be able to aid you in… processing that sensation. Who knows… if the two of you can explore the, ahhh…" okay, his psychobabble was clearly not up to snuff…

Ahhhh… Now that her purpose here was clear, T'Shaini stepped in. "Perhaps together we can find traces of the cache, and how and why they were removed. You may remember," Can I say remember to a computer construct? "something through exploration that is not easily identified without intense scrutiny."

There was, for Harry, at least, a breathless moment in which the photonic presence was clearly considering the Vulcan's words. In fact, when Clotho again gave that trademark regal nod, he actually went dizzy with relief. Note to self, respirating is important to functionality.

"As you wish… however, I would prefer this… exploration… be private. That is a precept of your treatment, is it not? I believe the term to be 'client confidentiality."

"Now, hold on," Harry challenged the hologram, "what if the traces lead to S'Va… to someone who doesn't have the crew's best interests at heart? You're as duty bound as the rest of us to protect this vessel…"

"You dare remind me of my duty?" And now Clotho turned on Harry…

"Client confidentiality is paramount." The counselor held up her hand. "I understand what you are saying Harry, but nothing will be gained if she cannot fully submit to the exploration, which would be impossible if she was concerned with who might at some point be privy to the conversation."

"Thank you."

Harry glared at the satisfied Clotho, "Fine… but I'm not kidding, if there's a hint that S'Van had anything to do with this… I am going to bury him." That last was an angry mutter, tossed out as he turned towards the door…

… and walked into a ginormous leaf. Knocking the offending foliage aside, he made it to the exit in three angry strides. Since he clearly wasn't needed here and the ship was underway, probably it'd be nice if the XO put in an appearance on the bridge. "Feel free to use the jungle room," he tossed back at Wendy before adding in a tone that boded ill for someone, "Find me something I can use to nail that bastard."

"He does hate to feel left out of the loop…" T'Shaini said with a lopsided smile at Clotho.

"His haphazard behavior is dangerous to himself… and others," Clotho responded, seriously. "Commander Finn was a great risk-taker when he first served on this vessel and there is nothing in his current demeanor to indicate that he has changed."

T'Shaini's eyebrow arched ceiling-ward at the harsh observation. "Risk-taker, yes…haphazard? No. I quite disagree. Any risk Harry takes is carefully chosen, it may appear from the outside to be haphazard, but only if you are unaware of the rapidity of his thought process.."

There was the slightest tilt of the head as Clotho pointed out, "It cannot possibly be as rapid as mine. However, he is the First Officer and if he wishes for us to explore the insult done to my systems, it is best we not waste time in debating his relative stability."

Who programmed their personalities? The counselor thought with an inward sigh. "Indeed…when do these…discrepancies begin to occur?" T'Shaini wound her way through the dense jungle-like interior to find the seating area.

"The first gap in the communications cache was noted as 61128.20… I was unaware of any missing data. Ensign Gorsky discovered the discrepancy." Despite the businesslike tone, Clotho's projected physicality hinted at a deeper disturbance.

"That does coincide with S'Van taking command, does it not?"

Clotho offered a short nod, "It does. It also, however, coincides with a significant changeover in crew, as well as the shift from deep exploration of uncharted territories to following the Terra Prime archeological excavation force. We were reassigned to observe and protect any antiquities unearthed by the expedition." The hologramatic personality reached out to gently stroke the nearest feathery frond, "It is… distressing… to discover that one has lost bits of one self," she said to the tree. Looking back towards the Vulcan, "It is particularly worrisome that there has been an upsurge in data theft… or blockage… since your crew came aboard. I do not know how much I may trust my own knowledge."

"I am certain that no matter what the loss is, you may still trust what you know, and we will find what has been lost" T'Shaini said confidently. Then a crease appeared between her brows. "There has been an upsurge…" Interesting, clearly someone was trying to hide something. "Did Alex find any patterns in the data loss?"

Clotho blinked once, accessing the young scientist's most recent data. "Not as yet."

"Hmm, well if there is a pattern to be found, he will find it." T'Shaini brushed aside a leaf that was intent on poking her in the back of the head. "Can you think of anything in particular that has happened that someone would want to erase?"

"Given the mission parameters I conclude that the information would likely be related to Terra Prime's activities. Who would benefit from such an erasure however, is open to speculation… despite Commander Finn's determination that Commander S'Van is to blame."

"I concur. Now we must explore alternative routes to returning those…memories." The counselor had almost forgotten she was speaking to a hologram, but was still uncertain of the terminology, she had no idea if they could be offended by terms, but she had no desire to test it now.

Clotho spared a small portion of her awareness to allerting operations to a fluctuation in the inertial dampeners on deck 12 then joined the counselor on the couch. "How do you intend to proceed?"

T'Shaini hesitated, she had been taken rather unaware by this request from Harry. I hope I can live up to his trust and expectations. If it had been a living being, there were hypnosis techniques she would have suggested…but what was hypnosis to a computer construct. Hm, it may work. I suggest we try something akin to water opening up a channel, there needs to be a small path for the water to enter, but once there it can open up into a great canyon." She shifted on the couch so that she was face to face with Clotho. "Think back, can you retrace a line of process right before one of the gaps, if you can, recite the last line of code…or several lines, let us see if by repeating actions we can once again trace the shadow path of lost information."

Clotho's eyes closed and in a moment there appeared, as if it were a window into the Chimera's thoughts, multiple lines of code, running across the air between the two… "This is stardate 61128… when the thefts first began…"

The Doctor is IN… Photonic Psychiatric help - 5 cents.


Vince Stryfe 02-16-2009 11:01:58 PM
:: USS Chimera ::
:: Vince's Quarters ::

Vince sat in what had quickly become his new favorite chair. He was starting to feel the creep of boredom, as he was off for atleast two more shifts after his long two weeks, attached to a bottle. He understood the reasoning for why he had been put under restriction for the time being, but couldn't bare just sitting around. He spun the computer screen on his desk around to where he could see it, tapping buttons, flipping through files. He stopped on one, smacking the arm of the chair smiling.

The current program that was displayed on the screen was he and his father's favorite, a Flight Simulator, giving the two the controls of over 100 different fighter, freighter's, and helicopters. He tapped a few more buttons, then got up from his chair, heading for his closet. He popped the door open, sifting through his collection of antique clothes, finally pulling out a case, throwing it up on the bed. He opened the case, revealing an early 21st century flight suit. He pulled the suit out, walking over to the bathroom.

After a few minutes he walked out, wearing the full flight suit. He reached over the bed, back to the case, and pulled out a helmet from the same time era. He plopped back down in his chair tapping a couple more buttons, then speaking…..

" Computer, what is the status of the holodeck?"

" The holodeck is currently not in use, would you like to reserve a session?" The computer asked with it's usual coldness. Somthing that never changed from ship to ship.

Vince lifted his finger, pointing at the computer," Yes I would there darlin', and make that session start as soon as I get there."

" Session reserved. What is the ETA?" The computer questioned hm.

Vince looked back from his doorway," I'm on my way now."

He walked into the cooridor before the computer could respond, wearing what was definetly not regulation uniform, but at the moment, he didn't really care. He was on some much needed time off, and he was getting ready to do somthing that back before the incident, he would do atleast twice a month, to just ease his stress, and enjoy himself.

He stepped inside a turbolift, oblivious to who else was inside, just ready to get this session going, and enjoy himself for the first time in awhile. He felt a tap on his shoulder, and ignored it at first, but turned around as it continued to find Kate Briggs standing behind him. He turned the rest of the way to face her. She looked him up and down, then a confused look crossed her face. Before she could ask, Vince answered her question.

" It's standard issue, 21st Century flight gear. I'm headed down to the holodeck to run through an old program of mine, and this gear just seems right."

She cocked an eyebrow," Oh really, well it looks pretty good on you."

Vinceleaned against the door of the lift," Why thank you, but I'm not it it for looks, I'm wearing it for functionality. This is the proper gear to withstand the g-forces that come with flying jets from the old days. You know, F-22's, F-16's, A-10's, and other various jets. Course the older planes from say WW2, it's not really needed, but I wear it anyway, just to be proper."

" Ah, I see," She stared up at Vince," So is everything about you revolve around flying somthing, or is there more to the pilot?"

Vince could see she was looking at him quite intently. He smiled," Well, not so much. I just tend to take my piloting seriously when I'm involved in it, so I don't make mistakes. After hours though, I can focus on other thi……"

Vince's attempt at being smooth was cut short as the doors to the lift slid open, sending him to the floor. He looked up at Kate, who now could barely keep from laughing, and shook his head. He jumped back up to his feet and shrugged his shoulders as the doors started to close. Once he was alone in the corridor he shook his head again, realizing how completly unsmooth that had been. He gave a short laugh, then started down the hall to the holodeck.

As he approached the holodeck, he noticed a man standing outside of them, glancing at the layout for the program that Vince was about to run. He walked up next to the man, looking at the computer screen, then back up at the man.

" Umm….. Can I help you with somthing, sir?" He looked to see the man's rank, a Commander, but not someone that he knew," I'm not really running a public program here, so…..?"

" Ah, Mr. Stryfe. I've heard quite alot about you and you academy days, not to mention your days as a fighter pilot in the Marines. Masterful understanding of how to handle a fighter in numerous situations, not to mention handling numerous starships. A jack of all trades if I might say." he man continued to stare at the screen.

" Well, you apparently know who I am, but you have me at a loss concerning your identity, care to elaborate?" Vince shot a cold stare at the man, still sifting through his program.

The man finally looked over at Vince," I'm surprised your father never mentioned me, or even showed you a picture of the two of us together. There have been numerous incounters between the two of us, and well I thought he always seemed to like me." he looked back at the screen.

" Cmdr. S'Van, yea Dad talked about you a bit, and it was always good talk. So what exactly are you doing here on the Chimera," Vince suddenly remembered," Nevermind, just answered that question in my head, but you havn't said why you're sifting through my program."

His gaze returned to Vince," Well I had always heard, from Victor, that this was his favorite program, and I was alerted to it's loading, so I came down to see why he loved it so much. I'd have to say though, from comparing this one to your father's, you have quite a few more aircraft to choose from."

" Well, dad isn't the kind to sit back and run this program all the time. I ran it for almost a week straight on some vaca awhile back, opened up a few options," Vince shifted against the door," but I always seem to migrate back to a particular one."

S'Van pointed towards the screen," North American P-51D Mustang. The scourge of the skies in the latter part of WW2. Quite the impressive little fighter."

" Wow you sure cracked the lock on that program pretty quick, makes you wonder what other jobs you have," Vince leaned up from the door," Are you spying on me, Cmdr?"

" No, just utilizing the command clearance that I still have. I am impressed by your stats with the P-51, how can someone from this century be this skilled with somthing so…so… archaic?" S'Van looked back at Vince.

" It's all about the passion for the ride. Enjoying the thrill of the MErlin engine roaring infront of you. Feeling the pull of gravity as you rifle through the air at 400+ MPH. You just have to love the plane, become a part of it, let it become a part of you," Vince patted his chest," Basically you just gotta have heart, the same thing the first people who piloted these things. Without that you're dead in the shies, you'll never be able to trust the plane, and she'll never trust you."

" Very nice Mr. Stryfe, very nice," S'Van point towards the door," Do you mind if I watch? I've always meant to sit in on one of your father's sessions, but work always got in the way."

Vince smiled at his Dad's old friend," Sure, why not. I always enjoy a good audience. Oh, and I was just kidding about the whole spying thing, just throwin' a joke at ya."

" I know, so shall we then?" S'van motioned towards the now open door.

Vince stepped towards the door, then looked back," You can join in if you want. I have a BF-109G-10 that I'd love to shoot down."

S'Van smiled," No thanks, I'm sure I'll get to watch you do that sometime, maybe sooner than later. As for today, I'd like to watch the Mustang in the air, uncontended, see how it moves."

Vince shrugged his shoulders then walked onto the holodeck, towards the P-51. S'Van stood off to the side, watching as Vince climbed inside, and started the plane up.

After 20 minutes or so, he had seen what he wanted to see, and stepped out of the program, back into the hall. He let the doors close behind him, and smirked as he walked away.

" I believe that Mr. Stryfe could be another piece of the puzzle," He stepped onto a turbo lift, letting the doors shut," Now onto other buisness….."


Originally Posted by Simba Wekesa/02-17-2009 11:16:39 AM

U.S.S. Chimera
Auxiliary Deflector Control

Simba groaned as he crawled out of what must have been the hundredth Jefferies Tube of the morning. He and Jensen had been all over the ship checking out every one of the ablative armor system, and he was starting to get a good feel for just how practical it would be for use in the real world. "Hey, thanks for staying on shift late. You have no idea how much it helped." He smiled at Crewman Jensen as he put an access panel back into place.

"No problem, sir. Whatever we need to do to get the ship ready. Is there anything else you need?"

"Nope, that should about do it. Now I just have to distill all this data," he held up a stack of PADDs that they had slowly accumulated, "into something useful before I brief Lt. Grimm.

"Well, good luck with that. I'm off, then."

Simba nodded in approval as the young crewman headed off down the corridor. He only had about an hour before he was supposed to brief Grimm, and he'd managed to get himself all dirty crawling around through the bowels of the Chimera. A shower probably wouldn't be a bad idea, he thought to himself as he tried to inconspicuously take a whiff of his uniform. He'd received a memo earlier that his temporary quarters were being reassigned. It could only be an improvement over the closet he'd slept in last night- the room originally assigned to Wekesa and Hudson had been even more cramped and drab than their old quarters on the Hawking. Now seemed as good a time as any to check out their new ones, he figured, as he browsed through the information on the PADDs en route to the nearest turbolift.

"Daaaaamn." Simba looked around the new quarters in surprise. There had to be some mistake, but he wasn't about to argue. Either that, or someone thought he was going to be on this ship for a long time. For whatever reason, he'd been assigned to junior officers' quarters on deck three, and they were certainly a step up from the tiny cadets' rooms he had gotten used to. "I've got a living room, I've got a sofa… hell, I've got windows," he said to himself, grinning, as he investigated his new surroundings. "Matt is going to love this." The cadet made his way past the stack of containers which had been transported to the quarters and poked his head into the sleeping area. There was a single large bed rather than the twin bunks he was expecting.

"I'm afraid Cadet Hudson will not be joining you here." Simba spun around to face the unexpected voice that came from behind him. "These quarters are assigned to you, Cadet Wekesa." The visitor stepped out of the doorway, allowing the doors to close, speaking with a cool precision that sent a small chill down Simba's spine.

"I'm sorry, you are?" The cadet frowned, not recognizing the man who had stealthily followed him into his new quarters.

"Commander S'Van, and I do apologize for my intrusion. I hope you find your lodging satisfactory."

"Um… yes, of course. It's just," he paused, trying to find the right word. "Unexpected, sir. If you don't mind me asking, where is Cadet Hudson assigned?"

S'Van studied the cadet for a moment, seemingly recording every detail. "Mr. Hudson will not be joining us on this mission, I'm afraid. His present medical condition would have restricted his duties, and he was transferred to Deep Space Nine to recover and await reassignment." A barely perceptible smile curled at the edge of his lips. "I don't believe his presence aboard the Chimera was essential."

Simba blinked in surprise. He didn't believe that Matt would have left without saying anything, but he also had no reason to doubt the mysterious Commander. He started to open his mouth to say something, but S'Van quickly changed the subject.

"I assume you are adjusting to your new duties in tactical?" he asked as he crossed the room and stood stiffly, looking out the windows at the stars streaking by.

"Yes, sir," Simba replied simply, keeping his distance. He wished that his uninvited guest would expedite his departure. Something about S'Van just felt wrong, and from what he had heard of the man, he would really rather not get himself tangled up with him.

"Excellent. I understand your specialization is in defenses, and that you also have a strong engineering background. Tell me, Cadet, what is your level of expertise in hand-to-hand and close range combat?" S'Van turned to face him, his piercing eyes seeming to drill into Simba.

Simba raised an eyebrow slightly. Of course, S'Van should already know all of this if he had read Wekesa's file as he assumed he had. "I've gone through basic combat training at the academy, just like everyone else. Beyond that, I've never really served in any assignment that has required me to do any advanced training."

S'Van nodded slowly, as though he already knew all of this. "Dans ce casse, je propose que vous fassiez quelque temps pour visiter le gymnasse. Compris?"

"Je ne suis pas sûr que je fais, Commandant, mais je me conformerai… si mes supérieurs conviennent." Wekesa slipped easily into the language S'Van had chosen.

The icy Commander smiled slightly. "Je suis confiant que vous et vos supérieurs verrez la valeur dans cette suggestion tout à fait bientôt. C'est vraiment un beau langage, le français, n'est-ce pas?"

"Oui, je pense. S'il vous plaît, Commandant S'Van, ce qui est le but de cette visite?"

"I simply felt it would be prudent to meet some of the newest additions to the Chimera's crew." S'Van once again showed his cold smile as he switched back to English. "Carry on, Cadet, I understand you have a briefing to attend. And I do hope you will find your new quarters comfortable." The Commander nodded politely and made a swift departure.

Simba frowned as he pondered the strange visit from the ship's former CO. S'Van hadn't really asked him anything that couldn't be found in his personnel files, and his choice to use French, which Simba spoke fairly fluently, was certainly unusual. He couldn't shake the feeling that S'Van had come here specifically to test him, though the objective of that testing was beyond him for the moment. The whole thing seemed peculiar, and he found himself wishing that Matt was here to talk to about it. Sighing, he pulled his uniform jacket off and flung it onto a chair on his way to the shower. As an afterthought, he paused and spoke. "Computer… lock the door."

Rough translation of the French dialogue:

S'Van nodded slowly, as though he already knew all of this. "In that case, I suggest that you find the time to visit the gym. Understood?"

"I'm not sure that I do, Commander, but I'll comply… if my superiors agree." Wekesa slipped easily into the language S'Van had chosen.

The icy Commander smiled slightly. "I'm certain that your superiors will see the value in this suggestion soon enough. It's truly a beautiful language, French, isn't it?"

"Yes, I think so. If you please, Commander S'Van, what is the purpose of this visit?"

Featuring an uninvited visit from Commander S'Van.


Originally Posted by Javier Costala/02-17-2009 04:00:59 PM

-Armory, Range-
-USS Chimera-

Cursing the soreness in his leg muscles and the turbolift ride that seemed slower than a breezer in a hailstorm, Ben was ten minutes late to his shift. Jameson was waiting for him and the Senior Chief looked more than a little irritated. Pierce reported in to the officer of the watch. "Chief, I apologize for the delay, I.."

"Petty Officer, how often were you late to your shift in Engineering?"

"Never Chief, I was never late," Ben replied promptly, "it won't happen again. I think the adjustment to Gamma shift and the training with Petty Officer Djinn.."

"It won't happen again," Chief Jameson repeated for Pierce's benefit. There was a tone of finality in the senior NCO's voice. "Commander S'Van is waiting for you in the armory. He's been waiting patiently for ten minutes while Cadet Mellon covered for you. Pierce, do not disrespect my department by slacking off." Jameson glared at Ben before adding a warning for the lowest ranking noncom. "The people who disrespect this department and its officers do not last."

"Yes Chief. I understand." Ben held Jameson's look, wanting to communicate his apology to his shift leader. Everyone knew about Rintala and what had taken place after the incident with the people from the IAS Hawking. The guy had been busted down two pay grades and relieved of his assignment. Lt Tenanji had also placed the man on suspension for an undesignated time period. "Next time I'll remember to set my alarm.."

"Save your excuses Petty Officer, the Commander is waiting," the Senior Chief interrupted BHP. He watched the kid's face and knew that Pierce was disappointed with himself. Jameson's features were unreadable but the Chief wondered if he had been too hard on Pierce. 'No,' Jameson realized, 'Pierce has more responsibilities as a junior NCO. And he'll have to be every bit as dedicated to the job and to training others so he needs to be a solid example.'

"Yes Chief," Ben replied once more, then made his way into the armory feeling pretty low. The feeling wasn't with him for long because Ben caught sight of a new addition to the armory and it piqued his curiosity. The Iotian nodded to Cadet Mellon who offered BHP an apologetic smile then took her leave.

Commander S'Van was standing beside one of the work tables where the officers assembled and disassembled weapons while cleaning or repairing them. A projectile weapon sat on the table. By Starfleet standards it was ancient but by Ben's standards it was the cat's meow. "Mister Pierce, how nice of you to join me," the Commander said, waving his hand to still the Iotian's apologies. "I don't care Petty Officer, no doubt your shift leader has made his displeasure known. I had a chance to get to know the charming and erudite Astyr Mellon." The way he spoke made Ben think S'Van found Astyr less than charming. It was almost as if S'Van had a personal joke about Astyr that he wasn't going to bother to share with Pierce.

"On a more important topic," the Commander said, "Are you familiar with this weapon? I know you have experience with antique rifles but have you ever used one like this?" As he spoke the officer patted the projectile weapon fondly.

"No Commander, but she's a beauty," Ben said as he whistled at the wooden stock and well-oiled bolt and rifle mechanism. He reached out to brush his hand along the wood.

"You may pick it up Mister Pierce," S'Van said, relinquishing responsibility of the weapon. "In fact, over the course of the next week I would like you to train with this weapon. I will have Ensign Saunders instruct you in the finer points of its utilization and I will expect you to rate as an expert by the time the week is over."

"Sir?" Ben asked, confused by the order.

"It shouldn't be too tough for you Pierce," the Commander instructed with a smarmy tone. "You were a marine and have used these weapons most of your life. I assumed you would be up to the challenge.." S'Van left his questioning of Pierce's skills hanging in the air.

"A week isn't much time, but I can do it Commander," BHP replied, his pride and the love for a 'real' heater taking over and replacing common sense. The Iotian placed the rifle's stock against his shoulder and sighted through the scope. He immediately liked the way the weapon felt snug against his shoulder. The scope was set for distance so it blurred the image projected by the lens. "Do I really have to train with Darby Saunders?"

S'Van did not reply so Ben lowered the rifle to glance in the officer's direction. The cryptic Commander was no longer in the armory. I have my orders, I guess that's about as long as he could stand. Ben reasoned as drew back the bolt on the rifle. The action was smooth and effortless, telling Pierce that the weapon had been taken care of by someone who was meticulous. On the table was a PADD, its header read: Springfield M1903A4 sniper rifle.

=/\=Crewman Pal to Petty Officer Pierce=/\=

BHP frowned and made as to set the rifle down then thought better of it and slung the weapon strap over his shoulder. He tapped his commbadge. =/\=Pierce here, go ahead.=/\=

=/\=Petty Officer, not to bother you, I mean, I'd hate to be a bother but… are you alone?=/\=

=/\=Pal, I'm not going with you to the dance if that's what you're trying to ask.=/\= Ben replied, having a little fun with the clown who'd nearly dropped a torpedo on him the day before. =/\=Crewman Anderson already asked me, sorry.=/\=

From where he lurked in the shadows of the Deck 14 aft launch bay, the Xepolite narrowed his eyes. The petty officer had taken the conversation where Pal had been laboring to go… how convenient. =/\=Well, you see, it's about Crewman Anderson I was calling. I mean… that is… if she is your…=/\=

=/\=Spill it Pal.=/\= BHP ordered, sensing the Crewman had something to share. =/\=This better be on the level.=/\=

Emotional… Pal liked that. Emotional people were easier to steer… and maybe be inclined to favor the fellow who brought them news about their… =/\=Of course, forgive me. I only thought you might want to know that, when I passed Ms. Anderson… coming off her shift, you understand, she looked… she looked…=/\= actually she'd looked as if she'd been stabbed. Pal remembered seeing Anderson in sickbay shortly after she had been stabbed by one of the IAS invaders, so he was in a good position to compare…

=/\=She looked what?=/\= Ben demanded, concern unveiled in his question. =/\=Pal, speak plainly. Did something happen to Crewman Anderson? Forget it, I'll comm her.=/\= the petty officer stated. Before he closed the channel BHP added, =/\=Thanks Crewman, I owe you one.=/\=

As the comm cut out, Pal gave a short grunt of satisfaction. Now if he could just duck this Djinn fellow for the rest of the shift…

Pierce tapped the commlink once more. =/\=Pierce to Anderson.=/\=

There was a longer pause than usual for a comm before… =/\=Anderson. Go ahead.=/\=

=/\=Anderson, what's your status?=/\= BHP asked, remembering that he was using an official communications link for personal business and tried to conceal it as best as he could.

=/\=Off-shift, Petty Officer,=/\= the response was brisk, but somehow off; almost… shaky? =/\= Going off the grid til Gamma.=/\=

Something is wrong. Ben placed the sniper rifle on the table and took a phaser from the armory wall. He checked the setting then asked, =/\=Anderson, I'll see you at the beginning of Gamma, Pierce out.=/\= After closing the commlink, Ben activated one of the consoles in the armory. "Computer, locate Crewman Jenny Anderson."

<>Crewman Anderson is in her quarters, Deck 9, Section C.<>

"Computer, I need an emergency transport to Crewman Anderson's quarters, security override Pierce Gamma Two Four," Ben said as he readied the phaser. The transporter light shimmered around his frame and less than an instant later he rematerialized in the Anderson/Saunder's crew quarters. The room was deserted. The gangster turned security officer guided the phaser in a quick 180 of the room, noting the dimmed lights, but not seeing anything else that was out of place. A crack of light came from under the door that led to the bathroom.

"Jenny?" BHP inquired as he eased the door open. Looking over his weapon he saw her sitting on the floor of the bathroom, the security officer scanned the small room making sure there were no threats. Once he was satisfied that they were alone Ben quickly clipped the phaser at his side then knelt beside the young woman. "What happened?"

In response, she gripped the robe closer. Hiding behind a fall of damp hair, Jenny took one long, shuddering breath before a quiet, "You shouldn't be here," emerged.

JP with Jen & Ben and a cameo by Dramm Pal


Originally Posted by Javier Costala/02-17-2009 11:55:53 PM

-Deck 5-

"..and I'll show you where I sit and the picture I drew for you in art," Lia exclaimed as she skipped along happily, holding Javier's hand as they made their way to Miss Katie's classroom. It was the first time her daddy had taken her to school since they'd arrived on what he'd said would be their new home.

"And I'll show you my picture of Scotty!" Eli chimed in from the right side, where he had a firm grasp on the engineer's other hand. The boy had been stomping along on the deck plates, preferring the noisy clang of his feet on Chimera's deck to the soft thump on the padded carpet of the Hawking. "It's a good one, Scotty liked it a lot!" As if to punctuate the impassioned boast, Scotty, who was trotting along at their heels, chose to bark at that moment. Both kids thought it was a wonderful joke and proceeded to giggle madly.

"Yeah he liked it," Lia managed to say through the giggles. Javier smiled down at the two kids, their laughter was infectious and he soon found himself laughing at their antics. It reminded him of how much fun they'd had when spending a week with T'Shaini in the treehouse on the holodeck. When holodeck stories were safe. the officer thought. Since Harry had sent Javier his report on the attempt on he and T'Shaini's (not to mention Nils') lives, Javier had been keeping better watch over his family. Unbeknown-st to T'Shaini, Javier had asked Tenanji to assign more security patrols around Lia's classroom and T'Shaini's office. The department head had readily agreed to increase security, surprising Javier and giving the engineer the impression that Tenanji had taken the attack on the Hawking personnel personal.

"Commander! Lieutenant Commander Costala! Commander!"

Javier turned toward the direction from which the yells were coming. A short, blond haired man in an engineer's uniform was running toward him, running fast until the young man tripped over his own feet and went flying down the corridor to land a few feet from where Javier, Lia and Eli were standing. The move was so comical and the look on the man's face so surprised, that Javier had to swallow hard to keep from laughing. Eli had no such problem. The youngest Ibrahim laughed at the spectacle. Lia ooo-ed, wondering if the man had gotten a boo-boo from the tough fall but laughed when the engineer sprang to his feet like a Jack in the Box on a spring.

"Commander Costala, I've been looking all over for you. I tried your quarters and you weren't there so I thought where would you be so then I went back to Engineering and you weren't there so then I got help from Atropos and let me tell you sir she is one hot lady but she didn't know where you were so then we asked the computer and it told us you were on this deck so I ran here as fast as I could," the young man said very quickly while grinning and gesturing wildly.

"Daddy, he's silly," Lia said then laughed.

"Be nice Honey," Javier lightly scolded before turning back to the young man.

"It's okay Commander I have a condition that makes me talk real fast and think real fast and then sometimes I just take off and people look at me and say: 'What's wrong with him? Why is he so wound up?' But I know they're just curious and not trying to be mean and hey you have two really cute kids, 'Hi you and you, and that's a really cool backpack.' But yeah sometimes I talk without thinking just because I.."

"Who are you?" the Chief Engineer finally asked, interrupting the young man's babble. And what are you on?

"Sorry Chief, I'm Abernathy Darwin Dawkins, Crewman Apprentice, I was scheduled to be a yeoman because I'm fast and I can process things at lightning speed!" Abernathy smacked one hand against the other as he shot the hand forward in a movement that caused Javier to lean back to avoid the hand. "But I also have a tendency to forget whatever I process because it goes in one ear and right out the other." The Crewman calmed down for a moment to add, "So I was assigned as your yeoman, even though you don't have a yeoman, so I guess I'll have to learn something..maybe warp core mechanics?"

"Uh no, I need a yeoman, I'm not that good with paperwork," the Chief Engineer admitted in an instant. And he shouldn't be any where near a warp core..or any systems for that matter. "Yeoman sounds good Crewman."

"Awesome! The first time I ever heard my parents say they were proud of me was when I told them I was going to be a Starfleet yeoman. I love you man, sir, Commander. This is so awesome. I'll go and start arranging your paperwork and get your schedule and shine your shoes or press your uniform. Wow I am so excited." Abernathy said in rabid excitement. He grinned at the Chief Engineer before hugging Javier quickly then running off down the corridor. Crewman Dawkins turned around to yell, "You are awesome!" before he ran into a pair of science officers.

Javier and the kids laughed as Dawkins bounded up, apologized profusely to the science officers then waved, and ran down the corridor once more. "He's funny," Eli stated.

"Yes he is," Javier agreed, then said, "okay let's get you two to school." The children continued to chatter away about Crewman Abernathy Darwin Dawkins whom they called 'that silly man' until Javier dropped them off at Miss Katie's school. Walking towards Main Engineering, Javier's commbadge chirped. He tapped the small silver and gold insignia and heard:

=/\= Lieutenant Commander Costala, Commander S'Van here, please meet me in the lounge in the next ten minutes. =/\= The channel closed before Javier could reply or ask S'Van who he was. Another new face. I wonder if he's as friendly as Dawkins..


Originally Posted by Emily Star/02-18-2009 04:54:35 AM

Emily added the PADD to an ever growing pile in Security and clocked out.

"Finally!," she smiled. Her time cataloging various crates had taken forever, even longer than it should have thanks to her unwelcomed chat with Jennifer.

"Star," a voice called out after her.

"Hey," she said smiling,"Long time no see. You've been a busy boy."

Fehr gave her an odd look,"I've been exactly where I usually am."

"I.."She sighed,"I was just being…"

"Weird!" Jennifer interrupted.

"Not you again! I swear you're like a new rash!"Emily said quietl.

"You have a rash?"Fehr gave her an even odder look.

"I.."she just shrugged,"what'd you want?"

"You've been asked to show the newbie around." He pointed to Jennifer.

"Newbie around? This is a new ship. We're all new and besides, what's to show her?" Emily was seriously confused.

"Every ship has its own way of doing things. Show her ours."He smiled at Jennifer and left.

"Yea, show me what to do."She smirked.

"Oh shut it." She groaned walking swiftly away,"if anyone asks tell them I did."

"Oh come on Em."She followed,"this is your job, you can't skive!"

"Did you request this?" Emily asked suddenly turning on her heels.

"Me?"She threw a hand across her chest,"you can't think that!."

Emily nodded,"ahh yes, you did and I can think that."

"You can't blame me for wanting time! Your my sister." Jennifer snapped.

"No relation." Emily barked back,"Now go away."

"At least answer one question I am DYING to know about."Jennifer begged.

"Fine.."she said, hands on hips,"but just one."

"Okay! What ever happened to that really cute guy you brought home. The one who gave dad a black eye!" Jennifer leaned in.

Emily went quiet and felt a pang she hadn't felt in awhile,"He..he's around somewhere."

"You two aren't together?"She prodded.

"No." She backed up a little,"We were engaged but it never went farther than that."

Jennifer laughed,"Men can be so fickle." she smirked,"I'm sure it wasn't your fault."

Emily looked at Jennifer with a disgusted look,"Your just dying to know how miserable I am aren't you? "

"Now.."Jennifer began

"I'm sure you've asked around. You just can't leave me alone. Can you? You have to make sure my life is worse than yours. As if its how you measure your own self worth."

"Don't cause a scene."Jennifer said, looking around.

"Then stop coming near me!" Emily spat each word out before pointing up ahead,"Now, walk ahead for a brief tour. I don't want to get into trouble. But say a word, interrupt and I am done."

Jennifer nodded and walked ahead.


Originally Posted by Simba Wekesa/02-18-2009 02:22:29 PM

::USS Chimera::
::Office, Chief of Tactical - Deck 3/Secondary::

Lt. John Grimm wasn't. Grim, that is to say. Despite the rush of crew transfers on and off the Chimera; despite the admittedly strange mission parameters of the past year, all spent in sector 001 acting as chaperons to the clearly ill-willed Terra Prime researchers; despite, even, his own sudden and incongruous shift to Acting Chief of Tactical by the equally incongruous Commander S'Van. It had been, he confessed to himself, much easier under Captain Solan. The Vulcan CO had never possessed any hidden agendas.

But for all the upheavals and new faces and subterranean machinations Grimm continued to fail to live up to his name. They had, when last in McKinley station, been granted an ablative shield generator and the gift of such forward-thinking technology was quite enough to keep the lieutenant humming as he attempted to make acquaintance, at least via personnel records, with his newest crewmates.

Cadet Simba Wekesa, fresh from the sonic shower and wearing a clean uniform, made his way quickly down the corridor, not wanting to be late for his first meeting with the new Chief. Fortunately, the tactical office was just a short distance down the corridor from the secondary bridge where he had reported in yesterday. Although tactical was technically a separate department on a warship like the Chimera, it was still closely tied to security and the two often collaborated towards the common welfare of the ship. "Chief Tactical Officer's office?" Simba asked a yeoman as he strode through the doors to the main security section, which also housed the small tactical office.

"Right down that hall, second door on your left," the yeoman replied, barely looking up from the monitor on her desk.

"Thanks." Simba nodded as he passed, shuffling the PADDs he was carrying into some sort of logical order. He found the chief's office just a few steps down the hall, directly across from Lt. Tenanji's, and pressed the call chime.

"Enter," John rose as one of the new faces appeared in his doorway. "Cadet…. Wekesa… is it not? Very pleased to make your acquaintance. Take a seat?" he indicated one of the two chairs available in front of the desk.

"Yes, sir. Thank you," Simba replied as he set his PADDs on the desk and sat down. Given the hectic nature of the last 24 hours and the decidedly austere presence of Commander S'Van, Lt. Grimm's pleasant demeanor was a refreshing change.

"Now," Grimm sat and moved a few bits and pieces aside, "I'm hoping you'll have had time to become acquainted… or, rather, reacquainted with our ablative shield technology?"

The cadet nodded. "Yes, sir. I've been over every component of the system, and I think I've got a fairly good assessment of its practical uses. To be honest, I have to say I'm a little surprised that it's never actually been tested before. The technology has great potential, but there are some very real limitations that we need to be aware of."

"Indeed?"

"Based on the initial studies we did at Starfleet, plus empirical data from Voyager's use of the prototype device, the armor shell has the potential to absorb energy weapons and deflect antimatter warheads well beyond anything else we've ever developed with no apparent damage to the ship itself. I hesitate to say that it would make the ship invulnerable, but it comes close. That said, the power draw that the system requires is enormous. I don't believe we would be able to create a stable warp field with the armor deployed, so the Chimera would be limited to sublight speeds. As you can see from these schematics…" Simba fumbled through the PADDs and handed the correct one to Lt. Grimm. "The armor is designed to have apertures for the phaser strips and torpedo launchers, but the firing arc of the phasers would be limited by the size of the apertures. Given the thermal dissipation profile of the shell and the power draw, I don't think we could sustain it for more than fifteen or twenty minutes in an ideal situation."

Grimm looked over the data and let out a small sigh, "So this is more a defense of last deployment at the present time?" He looked back to the young officer before him, "If there were more time, I'd suggest some in-flight testing of the armor's limitations but time is a limited commodity." He rose, strode to the replicator and ordered a cup of Irish breakfast tea, "May I offer you anything?"

"Coffee, please… black." Simba suddenly remembered how tired he was from the early morning spent crawling through Jefferies Tubes. "I don't know that I would say that it's a last deployment, sir, it has great potential to give us the upper hand in any battle. But I wouldn't advise counting on it until we have actually tested it."

"Agreed," the lieutenant delivered the mug to Wekesa as he took a considering sip from his own cup. "On the subject of testing," he added, returning to his seat, "even though we are in pursuit of the Terra Prime expedition's vessel, I believe it necessary to ascertain the Hawking tactical team's capabilities in vector mode." John picked up another PADD… the manifest of the Hawking transfers, "I'm awaiting final confirmation from Captain Torrik but I have found," and now there was a bit of a gleam in the dark blue eyes, "that the surest way to identify gaps in training would be, as my old tutor would confirm, to administer a pop quiz."

Simba grinned, getting the Lieutenant's meaning. He had a feeling that Grimm was going to get along just fine with his own devious streak. "I think that would be an excellent idea. As I'm sure you know, Lt. Fehr asked me to get the Hawking crew rated on the Chimera's… unique… features, and I can't think of a better way to do that."

John returned the smile, pleased that the young man was of a mind. He considered his notes from Commander's Finn and Costala, as well as Lt. Tenanji's take on the cadet's disposition. "Of course, this is all quite hypothetical, you understand," John cautioned, tapping an instruction into his desk console, "but it may just be that at… say… 1300 hours tomorrow you may wish to be very, very available. Not that there is anything happening at 1300 hours tomorrow, mind you." Grimm glanced at the console, "Have I mentioned that the tertiary bridge is currently unmanned? It would be an excellent location for an eager sort to brush up on the Chimera's unique abilities…" he left the suggestion hanging. While it was true Cadet Wekesa was young in the 'Fleet, the officer's actions during a recent crisis aboard Hawking as well as his rather specialized activities while at the Academy spoke to a maturity beyond his actual experience.

"Interesting that you should mention that, sir. Come to think of it, I've got a routine maintenance check on the tactical control systems on the tertiary bridge that I was thinking of getting started right around that time. That certainly is quite a coincidence." He took a sip of coffee, trying to conceal his smile and keep a straight face.

"Serendipitous, almost," Grimm grinned. "But, if I may point out, in addition to any systems work, I've been ordered by Commander S'Van to further your instruction in close-in combat skills." At that the senior officer frowned, uncertain as always of the former CO's objectives but also duty bound by the mission parameters to obey his strictures.

"I understand, Lieutenant. The Commander actually paid me a visit earlier and… suggested… that I make some time to brush up on it." He shuddered a little at the remembrance of S'Van's unexpected appearance and wondered if there was anything he didn't have a leg up on on this ship.

It wasn't as surprising as it should have been, that the Commander had bypassed Grimm's chain of command. "Well and good," was all he said, however. "Let us consider your extra-curricular training in keeping with the Chimera's motto… 'If it be not now, yet it will come: the readiness is all'," John looked over the available talent and made a note to contact his counterpart, Lt. Tenanji, for suggestions as to instructors.

Simba nodded. "Understood. I think I'll spend some time today brushing up on the rest of the ship's tactical systems… just in case, you know, I happen to run across any of them while I'm doing my maintenance check tomorrow. Anything other orders, sir?"

The lieutenant rose in the universal symbol of dismissal. "Not at this time. I'm sure we'll have much to discuss by approximately 1500 tomorrow." He lifted the PADD Wekesa had filled with data on the shields, "and thank you kindly for your take on the shield generators… clearly there's a great deal more to research before any deployment." John held out his hand, "Welcome to the Chimera, Mister Wekesa."

"Thank you, sir." Simba stood up and nodded politely to Lieutenant Grimm before turning to leave. At least, he figured, his new chief seemed realistic on his expectations for the ship and its experimental technology, and generally seemed to be on the same page as the young cadet. He smiled at the security yeoman again on his way out, though she seemed too busy to really acknowledge his presence, and headed off towards the battle bridge to study up on the rest of the ship's systems.

Joint post featuring Harry Finn as Lt. John Grimm


Originally Posted by T'Shaini/02-18-2009 03:28:00 PM

USS Chimera
Deck 5
Library

T'Shaini had tucked herself away in her new hidey-hole, however much her practice and meditation cleared her soul, sometimes it was not enough and she needed to be alone. And sometimes a step or two forward is followed by a step or two back… She had found new direction after Camael had introduced her to Ophelia, but the recent debacle with Angus had rekindled her seed of doubt. The Vulcan was still true to her desire to not shut down emotional pathways but times such as these made it very, very…very clear why her ancestors had chosen the path they had. She rubbed her hand unconsciously on the sore spot in her chest, it had been throbbing with a dull ache all day. Failure. Pushing that thought to the side, T'Shaini reached out and withdrew an enormous historic Terran atlas, so large that the span of the book could cover her torso…perfect. Laying it down on the floor in front of her, the counselor drew a deep breath in the silence of the library and began to pour over the old maps. Her long fingers traced the journeys of Louis and Clark, looked out over Alexander's empire, wondered at the breadth of the territory Ghengis Khan had conquered and let herself get lost in the past. Sometimes in order to recharge one must open yourself to absorb new landscapes and perspectives. She was familiar, of course, with Vulcan history…but the early history of the Terran's was just as interesting to her, colorful figures, brilliant vistas and so many emotional conflicts.

Napoleon, that was a fascinating figure. She had turned the page to see the waves of domination that one man from Corsica had swept across Europe. And quite an example of resilience . Even after having broken on the wall that was the Russian winter and lost his command, he had still managed to regain power.

"Did you know that it is a common misconception that he was short?" A cool voice spoke from above her.

"Excuse me?" T'Shaini tried to pass off the fact that she had just bumped her head on the wall behind her at the intrusion. She rose smoothly, then reached down to scoop up the over-sized book, there was an air of authority about this man and she had no desire to remain in such a position of obeisance. The Vulcan pulled herself up to her full height and raised one eyebrow.

"When he died he was autopsied in France, French and English measurement was not consistent at the time and he lost 4 inches in height in the English translation of it, so the phrase 'napoleon complex' that I believe your brethren use is quite inaccurate.

If possible the eyebrow rose even higher. "Thank you for your consideration, I will make a note of it."

"Do you enjoy maps?" He glanced down at the book. "Or is it history that is the draw."

He spoke as if he assumed she knew who he was, or maybe it was simply the self important attitude that did that. "Both, I find that studying the past and its effects can only aid in decisions made for the future…and maps, well…I would rather visualize the situation and they are an aid to that." For some reason it became tantamount that T'Shaini not admit she had not met him, she felt as if this were some sort of game and she refused to play it. I am not a mouse and I refuse to be treated as such.

"And puzzles?" His icy demeanor made it unclear why he was bothering to have this conversation.

"Puzzles?" Could this get any odder? "Why would I be a counselor if puzzles did not interest me." She drew the book closer to her, she was beginning to feel…cornered, he had not done or said anything remotely threatening but his very presence made her uneasy. "The mind is the greatest puzzle there is and I am privileged to be in a position to help unravel its mysteries."

"Good…good." There was a subtle shift in his features that T'Shaini could not begin to understand. "It was a pleasure meeting you, T'Shaini." Even more disconcerting was his deliberate use of her name. 'I know something you do not know….' singsonged in her head. H reached toward her and pushed a page in the atlas, his hand uncomfortably close to her body.

"I will guarantee you will find the next chapter of great interest."

Struggling to not perceptibly stiffen the counselor glanced down at the page he revealed, when her glance rose again to ask its significance…he was gone.

"Computer, who was that masked man?"

"Commander S'Van."

Curiouser and curiouser…T'Shaini leaned back against the wall and slid down to rest the book once again on her lap, staring at the open atlas. What possible significance could mid 20th century Europe have to me?


Originally Posted by Jenny Anderson/02-19-2009 09:32:34 AM

::USS Chimera::
::Saunders/Anderson Quarters - Deck 9::

"You shouldn't be here," Jenny told him, hoping he'd leave, hoping Ben couldn't see how… filthy… she felt. Scouring until her skin was raw hadn't helped… Aengus' words only confirmed what Jenny's subconscious had been pointing up, over and over, night after night. "You're on duty… you shouldn't…"

At first, Ben thought she was rebuking him for invading her privacy. Jenny's body language communicated to him that she didn't want him to see her. There was a second when he was caught in an emotional no man's land, worried about her but also wanting to respect her wishes to be alone. But the focus changed when Ben heard Jenny mention him being on duty. "Part of my job is to make sure that the crew is safe," he explained gently, "and that includes other security officers," and remembering his promise to Chief added, "but most importantly it includes you." BHP maneuvered in the small space so he could face Jenny. He tentatively placed a hand on her robed arm. The robe was damp and so was Jenny's hair, it looked as if she had crawled out of the shower and not tried to move any farther. 'Did someone attack her?' Pierce initially thought, a quick glance around the room proved the theory wrong.

'Unless..unless it's him. Chuck.' Ben realized. It was impossible. 'No one walks away from a headshot.'

"Jenny, is it him?"

"No, no… it's not that," she dug in deep and found an approximation of a smile to turn up to his worried gaze. "I'm, you know, I'm just exhausted, is all," no less than truth, there. "Commander S'Van got me up in the middle of the night to arm some plastique of all things and then I skipped lunch during shift and it's all just adding up and I'm sorry… I'm so sorry you were worried."

Ben nodded, accepting her explanations without comment. He'd known enough grifters and bookies in his early life to know Jenny wasn't being entirely truthful with him. He could have pressed her for more information but decided to leave it be. Whatever she needed to tell him could wait until she was drier and out of the damp clothing. He reached up and pulled a towel from a nearby rack, choosing the one that wasn't hot pink, and began to gently wipe the moisture from her hair. "You're going to catch a cold sitting on the floor with wet hair," Ben said, then added, "at least that's what my aunt always told me when I was a kid." He rubbed her hair vigorously for a few minutes before parting the auburn curtain that hid Jenny's face. "I'm going to get you another bathrobe," BHP said before he stood up and left the room.

She should have protested but he was out the door before Jenny, perplexed by Ben's ministrations, could gather her thoughts enough to speak.

He crossed the room and stopped beside the uniform replicator which was a garish pink. "Bathrobe, velvet and cotton, plush, white," the security officer stated. Ben took the robe after it materialized and returned to the door, pausing at the threshold, he held the robe out then turned his body and head away from the bathroom. "Put this on," he said, while studying the half pink, half normal room.

The combination of his matter of fact care and discrete avoidance of her changing brought a welcome warmth to Jenny's chilled soul. Covered in the soft caress of the new robe, she tentatively stepped out of the bath to see him… standing watch. For the second time in the same day she felt short of breath, but for different reasons entirely. "It's okay to look, now," she offered, past the rapid thrumming of her heart.

"Is that a pink tricorder?" Ben asked in disbelief as he stared at the instrument that was poking out from underneath a stack of PADDs. He shook his head before turning to find a warmer, less wet Jenny Anderson standing just behind him. BHP grinned as he took in the contrast of the white robe and her dark golden red tresses. 'I don't know if it is okay to look.' Ben began to experience feelings similar to what he'd felt while with her in the training room. The realization that he was alone with Jenny, in her quarters and she was dressed in nothing but a robe, only increased the nervousness he felt creeping in.

"Now maybe you can tell me who hurt you," Ben said, forcing himself to focus on something other than Jenny's proximity to him. "I know you're exhausted but that isn't the whole truth."

"I… no," she shook her head in admission and denial, both, knowing that to bring up the incident in the turbolift would only lead to disaster. Jenny could face a lot… and she would… but she couldn't live with destroying Ben's, or even Aengus', career. "I'm sorry," she added, unable to keep her eyes from darting away, "but some things… there are some things that you can't help me with. I mean…"

"I can try," BHP interrupted, "if you tell me, I can try to help." It hurt him that she wouldn't share what was clearly hurting her, but Ben didn't let it show. His features remained impassive, stubborn even, as he looked down at Jenny, whose eyes were everywhere but on his face. "Don't you trust me?"

"Oh," the question brought her back to him, "more than anyone," she said, reaching towards him before she saw Ben's expression and froze, hand caught in mid-air, "Don't you trust me?"

"You know I do," he almost retorted, "but don't use my trust as a smoke-screen so you won't have to share what is hurting you." He took her hand and held it, using it to gently pull Jenny closer. "I care for you," Ben stated, looking into her eyes, "if something is hurting you I want to do all I can to stop it. That's the kind of guy I am."

"I know," she sighed, suddenly weary of fighting war on three fronts, "but what if what's hurting me could hurt you?" Jenny's eyes dropped once more, focusing on their linked hands, fearing there would never again be a day that wasn't, somehow, dirtied by those endless hours, locked a dark world of humiliation and pain.

"Than at least it will be something we can both face..together. We did say we would watch each other's backs," BHP reminded Jenny. His fingers brushed beneath her chin and tipped her head back so he could see her face again. "And how do you know it will hurt me? I'm a pretty tough guy, I was gangster once you know." This statement was concluded with the BHP signature smile and wink.

Jenny, didn't smile back. "Because it hurt you before… when he used you…" she finally gave in to the truth that Ben wasn't just tough.. he was unwaveringly stubborn… no… steadfast. Which meant that, in order to save him from what she was sure would follow any revelation of Aengus' judgment, she had to surrender the truth which had haunted her since Ben's return. And hope it wouldn't drive him away. "I didn't want him to touch you… "

"He can't hurt me," Ben said, realizing that memories of Chuck and what he had done had dragged Jenny down into despair. "Don't let him hurt you either." His arms slipped around her waist and Ben pulled Jenny into an embrace. "Don't let memories of what was take away from what we have now. The only way he can hurt us is if we let him, and the bank's closed as far as I'm concerned," he concluded. BHP hugged Jenny a little tighter. "How..when does he come back?"

"At night," she admitted, unable to still the shudder which accompanied the memories, "when I'm dreaming he… slides in and I can't stop him. I should be able to fight him off but I can't… and then he…" released at last from her own self-imposed exile, Jenny melted into the comfort of Ben's strength. "I can't make him stop," she said, so softly it was barely audible, "I can't make him stop so I just… stay awake."

JP with BHP TBC


Originally Posted by Jenny Anderson/02-19-2009 09:55:39 AM

::USS Chimera::
::Saunders/Anderson Quarters - Deck 9::

(cont'd)

"… I just… stay awake."

"And that's why you've looked so tired lately," Ben answered. The security officer was reminded of how tired Jenny had seemed on DS9. He wanted to kick himself for not finding out the reason behind her exhaustion sooner. "You should have told me," he said quietly as Ben held Jenny. "I could have.." What could he do? He wasn't a doctor or a counselor. Ben was out of his element when it came to the human psyche. "I could stay with you," he offered, hoping that being close would increase Jenny's confidence in her mental battle against Chuck, "watch over you while you rest. Maybe it would help you sleep?"

Yes, of course, she should have told him. Because, 'Hey Ben, I'm getting raped every night in my sleep' was a great conversation opener. Jenny dropped her head on his chest, face burning until she heard his offer and almost laughed, except it was all too hurtful to laugh. "How? When?" She tried to distance herself, "I… T'Shaini led me through a meditation thing and it was really helpful," until Jones woke her up, anyway. "I can try that and you can get back to work." He wasn't letting go so she continued trying to explain, "I don't want you to get in trouble with Chief…" Still not letting go. "I hate this… I hate being so…"

"Stubborn?" BHP said. "I want to help and you're my girl. On my world that means everything else can wait until you feel better." His arms moved to hug Jenny around her shoulders. "Maybe if I stay you can sleep some..if not we'll just have to find something else that works."

Jenny thought about mentioning that his world and Starfleet had widely divergent points of view on what came first but she had a strong sensation that he'd have yet another argument to counter her argument and, through it all, he'd still be not at his post. "Okay," she agreed, "we can try that…" After all, if she 'dropped off' quickly enough, he could see her snoozing… "and then you can get back to your post before Jameson notices you're not there."

"He won't notice if I'm not. I received orders from Commander S'Van to train with Darby," Ben explained as he relinquished his hold on Jenny. "By the end of the week I'm supposed to be an expert sniper with this ancient weapon. It's copaceptic but also a little confusing." He glanced around the room as if looking for something then pulled back the blankets on the bed that was not covered by a hot pink comforter. "Pyjamas?" Ben asked before doing another 180 to face the wall so if need be Jenny would have some privacy.

Accepting this was how it had to go down, she dragged an oversized green cotton shirt out of her dresser but his last words were pinging at her instincts, "He asked you to master an ancient weapon," the robe fell and her next words were muffled by the fabric of the sleep shirt, "and he woke me up to assemble an ancient explosive…" Jenny's head emerged and she shook the hair from her face. "That's not just confusing, he's up to…"

"Can I turn around now? Now that I missed the show.." BHP inquired as he grinned at the blank wall.

"What? Oh," Jenny came back to the present, "sorry. Feel free," she shrugged as he turned, "not much to see."

Ben turned around and took in the sight of Jenny in her 'peejays'. For a moment he felt anxious, almost nervous at being alone with Jenny while she was wearing so little clothing. She was decent and not showing off but BHP was use to seeing her in her uniform or civvies. "I disagree, you got it in all the right places and a nice little chassis to boot," the Iotian gangster in him commented. "I'll be over here," Ben said, nodding towards a nearby chair. "You should try to get some rest now."

"Yes, mom," she fell back on humor, ducking to hide the massive flush she felt at what was probably a compliment. She slid between the cool sheets, certain that she could fake a decent rest and set Ben free but even as her head hit the pillow, the many sleepless nights rose up immediately to lay claim to Jenny's consciousness and the world began to go to grey and, on cue, the fear crept back… just enough for her to reach out, trying to keep her eyes from drifting closed and ask, "Hold my hand?"

He grasped her hand in his, kneeling beside Jenny's bed as his other hand pushed her hair back. Ben brought Jenny's hand to his lips. He didn't know if his idea would work or not. Jenny's head had barely touched the pillow and she was frightened. "Do you want me to hold you while you sleep?" he asked gently.

The look in Jenny's eyes - haunted, yes, but also filled with trust in him - was all the answer he needed.

"Okay," Ben said then slipped off his boots. He unclipped his commlink and the phaser at his waist and stowed them in his boots before placing them to the side. His heart was pounding as he lifted the blankets and slid into the bed beside Jenny. Even though he had his uniform on, and she was in her pyjamas, Ben still felt as if he were somehow taking advantage of the situation. It's just so she can sleep. You're not doing anything wrong. He put his arm around Jenny's waist and pulled her in closer to him.

Curling into the shield Ben represented, Jenny's head nestled into the curve of his shoulder, content that, even if it were for only a few minutes, she'd be safe. He would keep her safe. "Fair warning," she murmured, smiling a small smile as she finally began to relax, "there may be drool…"

"I'll take it as a compliment," BHP replied as he grinned up at the ceiling. "Lights dim to seventy-five percent."

"G'night," she whispered as the lights dimmed and then, falling, "thank you."

Slumber Party with Ben and Jenny (what, no s'mores?)


Originally Posted by Javier Costala/02-20-2009 01:24:35 PM

-Main Engineering-

The Chief Engineer entered his department almost without realizing it. He'd been thinking about the strange meeting with Commander S'Van and the questions that the even stranger officer had peppered him with. 'Are you afraid of heights? I see your home is in Lisbon, have you ever been to Ste-Mere-Eglise in France? Can you describe how a unit would perform the fire and advance tactic? What do you know about Roman Catholicism? How do you feel about religion in general?

"Commander! Chief! Sir!"

'Oh no. Crewman Dawkins. He'll always be in a good mood though,' the Chief thought as he waited for Abernathy Darwin Dawkins to inform him of what was causing the enlisted crewmember to wave his arms and jabber like an excited chimpanzee.

"Chief Costala! I arranged your schedule so you could meet individually with each person and then re-instate them on your own because I knew you would probably want to talk to each engineer who returned to active duty just because you haven't officially re-instated them yet and you have to approve their reinstatement and so I thought.."

The thought of meeting with the engineers who had abandoned the ship, because of some misplaced sense of trust in Foxe, rankled with the Chief Engineer. "I'll meet with them all at once," Javier decided, his tone voicing the unpleasantness that he felt. "Just send all of them to my office, Crewman."

"Yes Sir," Crewman Dawkins answered. The tone of the Chief's voice was all the warning he needed and Abernathy took off to call the engineers to the meeting.

Javier watched his 'yeoman' leave to call the engineers to the meeting. Dawkin's limbs flailed like a windmill as he ran and if the officer hadn't been in such a bad mood he would have laughed at the spectacle. Remembering Mustapha wasn't in Engineering, Javier made his rounds, checking with each engineer from the Hawking and then those that had remained aboard the Chimera, who had not filed for a transfer. To his knowledge there were seven engineers that had stayed: Ensign Jax, Cadets Pova and Byeva, Chief Suko and then some miscellaneous crew they had picked up from a couple of transfers from Operations. Chief Suko impressed Javier to no end. The non-com was one of the true professionals in Engineering and she told him as much.

"My duty is to the ship, Commander. I was assigned to this vessel because of my knowledge of quantum mechanics. I believe I am the best person for the job. If I left because of a personality conflict..then I'd be doing Starfleet and the Chimera a disservice," Suko explained as she entered a string of code into the console at which she was working.

"I agree, Chief Suko," Javier admitted honestly. The answer earned him a fleeting smile from the Asian woman. "I don't expect everyone to trust me right away, but I do expect them to be loyal to their chosen profession."

"I think you and I will get along just fine then Chief," Sumi acknowledged, "If you'll excuse me I have to finish these diagnostics. I don't want to seem rude but these should have my full attention."

"Of course." He stepped away from the woman and meandered through Engineering, stopping once to provide some assistance to T'Bay but then continuing to wander. Javier wanted to have establish a presence in the new department. And if that means 'walking the quarter deck' so be it. He noticed that his office was inhabited by two people but knew there were more to come so he waited.

"I think once they get to know you they'll like you," a voice said. "I like you and we've never even been introduced." The Chief Engineer turned to his left and found a dark-haired woman dressed in civilian clothing standing beside him. There was a moment when Javier wondered how the woman had entered Engineering withough being challenged by anyone..

"I can see the wheels turning," the woman teased.

"The holographs! Excuse me, phototonic beings," Javier said apologetically when his first reply had been met with a pouty frown. "You're…Clothos?"

"Am I so severe? No, I am her sister, Atropos," the woman said playfully, "Clothos would only come to Engineering to inform you of the EPS node on Deck 8, Section B that is performing with 99.1118 percent functionality. My other sister, Lachesis, would come to advise you on how to approach the engineers that seek entrance into the department after making the mistake of listening to Foxe."

"My apologies, it's my pleasure to make your acquaintance," Javier said as he held out his hand to Atropos. The woman looked at him thoughtfully then took the engineer's hand and shook it. Atropos laughed at the refreshing qualities the Chief Engineer displayed with a simple gesture. "The pleasure is all mine Chief Costala."

"If you'll excuse me I have to meet with those engineers. Can we talk later?" Javier smiled at the phototonic being amicably. Even if Atropos was a program, she was, like Abernathy had described, hot. Not that Javier was attracted to the A.I., but since she knew the ship like the back of her hand then knowing and being on good terms with at least one of the 'sisters' would be beneficial, if not downright fun.

"I look forward to it," Atropos agreed. Her eyes followed the Engineer as he took his leave and made for the office. She hadn't told him she would be listening in on the meeting from the secure console at his desk. Listening, only listening, no judging this time, just listening. the A.I. thought, although she couldn't promise the same from her sisters.


Originally Posted by Harry Finn/02-20-2009 07:57:05 PM

::USS Chimera::
::Office, Chief of Security - Deck 3/Secondary::

“Here,” Harry said, striding into Tenanji’s office and dropping a potted plant… something in dark green with broadly tapered leaves and virulently scarlet flowers… on the lieutenant’s desk, “office warming present.”

“Ah,” Usher, who’d jumped to his feet upon Finn’s entrance, carefully moved the rather predatory-looking shrub aside, “how thoughtful.”

“I left one for the Tactical guy, too,” the Chimera’s new XO commented, prowling the small office space. “A blue-purple thing. Hope he likes it.”

Tenanji’s brow curved up. “I’m certain Lt. Grimm will appreciate the gesture.” After his superior had crossed the small room two more times he let out a sigh, “Sir… did you need something… specific?”

“No. Yes.” Finn stopped pacing and cursed, briefly, “I don’t know… you tell me.” He propped himself against a wall that wasn’t taken up by plasteel crates, “Atropos indicated that Commander S’Van had been… taking meetings… with some of the crew.” Meetings S'Van had specifically requested stay off the record… so Attie and her sisters had been unable to witness the specifics. “I wondered if you’d heard anything about that?”

“I commend your source,” the younger man replied. “I’d only just heard of the meetings myself… by way of some scheduling changes and… scuttlebutt in the office,” the last was said with a note of apology. “B’Naath indicated he’d heard from Saunders… I know but, hear me out… from Saunders that McMennan was waylaid upon arrival…”

“That would be before he requested the transfer,” which S'Van had ordered Finn to deny.

Usher nodded, “It would.”

“Any others?”

“Jameson was on duty when the Commander met with Pierce and,” Tenanji considered his superior carefully, “Chief Gran was working the armory last Delta shift when S'Van joined Anderson and Ferris Jones in the training room. They met for approximately fifteen minutes before the crewman was dismissed. Shortly after, Ensign Fuentas entered the practice area.” The Chief of Security had to give Finn credit. He showed no more reaction to his god daughter being called on than he had for any of the others.

Of course, Usher happened to know that Finn was an exceptional actor, when need be.

“There are rumors," he continued, "again, thanks to Saunders… that it is not only Security being ‘visited’ by S’Van. Unfortunately, she had no names but, I did have a request from Lt. Grimm regarding some rather serious indoctrination in hand to hand combat for Cadet Wekesa, forwarded from S’Van… and Pierce’s shifts have been altered to make room for a solid week of marksmanship training… with an obsolete weapon.”

“How obsolete?” Temporal incursions, timeships and stolen antiquities danced in Finn’s head.

“Mid-twentieth century Earth.”

Harry’s response was a short, sharp nod. “Right. Thanks. I’ll let the Captain know the rumors aren’t just rumors and,” he pushed off the wall and made for the door. “If you hear any more scuttlebutt on S’Van’s movements, don’t wait for a visit,” he jerked his chin towards Tenanji’s desk,” That is, unless you want another plant.”

“I’ll contact you the moment I hear anything,” Usher assured his XO, giving the plant a sideways glance as Finn left the office. It didn’t just… move… did it?

Featuring NPC Lt. Usher Tenanji


Originally Posted by Torrik Nils/02-22-2009 10:56:53 AM

:: USS Chimera ::
:: Captain’s Ready Room ::

The door swished shut behind Harry as he departed, and Nils beheld the ‘gift’ his XO left for him. A tall lush tree stood in a corner that had been very spartan only moments before. And although it did brighten the room considerably, Chimera’s new Captain scowled as he looked at it. Releasing a long sigh, he shook his head at the prospect of yet another life he was responsible for. Perhaps Koz would be willing to impart some botanical mojo in his direction.

Turning his attention back to the task at hand, the young CO rose and gathered up four hours worth of research, plus the new duty roster, and the schematics of the ship, which he still hadn’t fully reviewed. He felt certain that they’d skipped some vital educational period in the rush to transfer from Hawking. Surely new Captains, especially ones as young and inexperienced as Nils, were briefed on their new ship class before taking command and setting out on wild and dangerous missions. Surely…

“Report,” the Bajoran said curtly as he settled into his chair and juggled the PADDS into place.

“Maintaining warp 9.95 and steady on course,” said Gordon Capers from the Helm.

“Ship’s systems all green lighted and shining bright,” said an unfamiliar voice from Ops. Nils didn’t recognize the young man and surmised he must be one of Chimera’s previous crew members. The fact that he’d ducked the Captain’s radar to this point boded well from Nils perspective. He at least hadn’t requested a transfer. Chase Moretti, Nils read from one of the duty rosters.

Glancing about the bridge he realized there was an entirely new set of officers from when he’d entered his ready room. Apparently he’d missed shift change. But in light of the ‘rumor’ Harry had just passed along concerning S’Van’s archaic drilling of their crew, he wasn’t surprised he’d missed Delta shift taking duty stations. The sooner they completed this mission and got that spook off their ship the better. For now they’d play by his rules. For now…

Nils glanced at the chrono on his chair. He felt obliged to remain on the bridge for another reason as well. The ‘surprise’ drill was just around the corner. A readiness drill would reveal a number of weaknesses that Nils wouldn’t otherwise recognize. He wanted to be fully and completely engaged in order to maximize his learning potential. Once more he reviewed the battle assignments, focusing on MVA mode since it was the most foreign to him. With Costala taking the Chimera’s Secondary vector, and Finn resuming his position in the Tertiary bridge, Nils would be suddenly thrust into a new position – Fleet Commander. Granted it was still one ship, but thinking from multiple plains of attack and taking the reins of a 'fleet of three' caused him to feel terribly inadequate. Self doubt raised its ugly head once more and plagued him to the core of his pagh. He wriggled in his seat a little, but it still felt uncomfortable.

As if on queue, the wailing of the Chimera’s klaxons erupted throughout the ship.

“Captain…” struggled Moretti clearly unable to process his console. “I’m reading… We’ve got… Unidentified threat to the vessel. We’ve automatically switched to red alert,” he finally settled on and he swiveled about to make eye contact with his new Captain. The look sent a shockwave through Nils.

The young man looked pleadingly into the Bajoran’s eyes as if crying out silently, ‘tell me what to do…help me…’ And the full weight of command settled once more on Nils' shoulders. Even though he knew this was just a drill, the pressure he felt to get it right was not. And the level to which Moretti and many of the crew would be relying on him to make good calls slapped him hard in the face.

“Alter ship status to condition blue,” he called trying to sound calm yet in charge. It took ever bit of discipline and effort he could summon to smooth his features and appear in control. Consciously choosing to release the death grip on his arm rest he turned to Lt. Quincy, who hovered at tactical appearing a little wide eyed. He worked furiously trying to identify the threat before Nils interrupted his focus. “Prepare for multivector assault mode,” the Captain called.

Nils turned his attention back towards the viewscreen and thought, Here we go.


Originally Posted by T'Shaini/02-22-2009 12:13:21 PM

USS Chimera
Deck 5-Counselor's office

Emily had a heavy conscience. Actually if she could weigh it, the sheer weight would crush her entire frame into a neat flat pile. That wasn't the problem, she'd dealt with having too much on her mind before however at this time, in this moment it was interfering with her work and even her sanity. Normally she could just switch it off and do her job but it seemed impossible to even move a step without the irritating voice calling, "Emily!".

"What do normal people do when troubled?" she thought to herself..or more spoke out loud without knowing it. Then it hit her. Well technically she walked into it. Standing up she confronted the offending door and with an evil glare rang the chimes. It was her first visit to a Counselor. She hoped there were cookies.

David bounded for the entrance and signaled it to open. "Welcome Emily!" The effusive young man near shouted. "We are so glad you are here…could I get you something to drink? Something? T'Shaini will be right out." He stepped back self consciously…do not overwhelm them…do not overwhelm them. He thought, repeating the mantra the counselor gave him in his head.

Emily took a step back, "How do you know my name." she asked a little creeped out. She looked around the room, "Are you new?" she then processed the rest of his hyperactive sentence, "and yes I'd love a water." she took a seat and watched the young man literally spin on his heels and fly off.

Bringing back a cold glass of water to the clearly unsettled young woman, David lowered his voice. "Well it is my job to know who comes in this office, you made a appointment…I took the time to look you up on the computer so that I could greet you by name." He flashed her his blinding smile. "I am trying to make everyone feel welcome."

"David, is Emily here?" The Counselor's warm tone flowed from the back of the room. Moving in with her hand outstretched T'Shaini smiled. "Good to meet you, I am so glad you decided to come by….shall we?" With a nod to her office, she released the woman's hand and moved back into her office. "Please be seated." She gestured to the bane of Harry's existence…the comfy chair.

Emily took a seat, a little overwhelmed by the friendly atmosphere. She'd never been in a counselors area but from what she'd heard it wasn't supposed to be this nice. Then again the people she heard from were seriously disturbed as well. She wasn't sure if she counted as that. She hoped not. Relaxing a little she allowed her body to lean back a little in the chair.

She smiled, "Umm so how does this work exactly? Do I just talk or do you talk first?"

Seeing the uncertainty…she would not be much of a counselor if she could not see that, T'Shaini folded her legs beneath her in a casual pose. "Whatever you wish. If you would like, you can tell me a bit about yourself…or what brought you here today."

"I am not even sure why.." Emily stopped herself and sat up a little, "Okay that is a straight out lie. I know exactly why I am here. I'm at the end of my wits." she stopped again, "Okay that's an exaggeration. I'm just stressed out. My sister transferred here and I've never had to work with her. I've told Tenanji that I'm fine but obviously I'm not. I'm here."

Emily had pushed her home life so far back that it was hard to remember exactly why she hated her sister. She could easily remember her father's coldness and her sister's inheritance of that but in truth she had nothing new to say against Jennifer. Of course Emily was sure that she was just the same.

"Soo is that a good place to start?"

"It is indeed." She leaned forward and steepled her fingers. "How close are you and your sister?"

"We aren't at all," she sighed, "she makes sure I remember I'm adopted."

"Ah, when was the last time you had any contact with her?" The counselor focused on what seemed to be the root of the current problem, if there was time down the road, they could discuss her parents.

"Two years ago, the ship I was serving on stopped at earth and we had leave. I brought my boyfriend home, it didn't go good. In fact it went really bad. That was the last time I talked to her." Emily smiled slightly, remembering some of the highlights of the trip. It hadn't all been bad but that had also been a long time ago.

"What was the cause of the 'bad'?" T'Shaini asked gently.

"Well to make a long story short my boyfriend, Carl, ended up punching my father. My mother didn't speak to me for a year. Jen stayed the same." Emily replied.

"Oh, well I can see why you would qualify it as 'bad'." Nodding, she leaned back slightly to give Emily some more perceived distance. "So your family dynamic has always been strained, would you say?" Seeing the slight affirmation, the counselor continued. "Well what we must determine now is how to handle the current situation to give you enough equilibrium to deal with the root of the problem."

"Any advice is welcomed. I can't keep feeling like this, I'm going to wind up doing something I regret." Emily gave a small smile,"and I trust your advice."

"Less my advice than the two of us working together for you to decide what the best course of action is." T'Shaini said gently. "Do you feel able to discuss with Usher your discomfort? And perhaps ask to never be scheduled to work the same shift so that you can gain some security…" A slight wince crossed her face. "if you will pardon the unintended pun."

Emily chuckled, "I get what you mean, however I'm not comfortable after I already said I was fine. It doesn't inspire much faith in my word, and he barely knows me as." she thought for a moment, "then again I don't see a way around it."

"There is always a way if the current situation will impair your ability to function at an optimal level. I have no difficulty speaking to him on your behalf if you would prefer that, then we can gradually work on the issue…perhaps even bring your sister in for joint counseling if she is amenable. What would you say to that?"

The clearing of the security officers face was interrupted by the sounding of an alert, both women leaped to their feet and began to speak simultaneously.

"We can reschedule…"

"I have to return to my post…"

"Yes." T'Shaini moved quickly to the door with Emily at her side, letting her out first, she turned back to David. "Blue alert, sessions are canceled, I must go…" The corner of her mouth quirked upward. "you hold down the fort."

JP with Emily Star…well of course…


Originally Posted by Javier Costala/02-22-2009 01:32:04 PM

-Main Engineering-
-Chief Engineer's Office-

Javier studied each individual in the small room, looking at the various officers as he tried to decide what to do with them. He knew that Nils had tried to change their minds about leaving and give them another chance but Javier felt nothing but anger and intense disappointment as he studied them. There were four engineers who had refused to do their job based upon what one rotten apple had told them. They aren't engineers, they may think they are but they're not. Engineers do the job because they love it or because they feel that the ship can't exist without them. There's another reason they're staying..Foxe. the Chief thought as he glared at the officers.

"I know the Captain gave you the chance to reconsider your requests for transfer," he told them his tone very precise. "And some of you chose to return to Engineering but the fact is, unless I accept your return to duty, you won't be reinstated." He had their full attention. "You made your initial decision because you didn't trust me. I doubt very much that the Captain's speech restored your trust so quickly. In fact I think you've all been in contact with Lieutenant Foxe and this is some sort of new plan since he can't find a sympathetic ear at HQ."

"Commander, we wanted to come back to our ship.." one of the officers started to say.

"It's not your ship and this isn't your department. I'm denying all requests to be reinstated," Javier told the group flatly. "Go to Operations or Science, go wherever the hell you want, but you're not going to infect Engineering with your piss-poor attitudes or whatever ulterior motives Foxe is planning." Foxe. the Chief Engineer, Where the hell is he? Foxe should be here.

"Dawkins!" Javier shouted at the closed door.

"Yes Chief!" sounded through the opening panels as the skinny engineer slipped sideways through the crack so he could get to Costala quicker.

"Where the hell is Lieutenant Foxe?"

"He said he would meet with you at his leisure and that being called upon by the..," Abernathy took an uncharacteristic pause. Foxe had used the words 'Incompetent Chief Engineer' but Dawkins wasn't about to repeat them. The Chief was clearly agitated, and in the short time he had known Commander Costala, Abernathy had grown to like him. The 'yeoman' switched gears, "I told him I thought that was a bad idea but then he went on to remind me that crewman don't have the freedom to decide how a lieutenant should or should not act and that if I wanted to keep what little rank I have I should shut up and leave him alone."

Javier glowered in anger. His hands gripped the edge of his desk so tightly his knuckles turned white. That motherf**ker! The Chief Engineer turned to face the others. "You're dismissed, leave Engineering and don't ever return. If I see any of you here again I'll have you thrown in the brig!" He waited until they filed out of the room. Their features registered shock for the most part, although one Terran engineer looked angry. Javier almost wished the man would say something irritating so he could punch him in his pimply, weasel face. He stared the man down, daring him to say something. The engineer recognized trouble and turned his head to avoid Costala's glare.

"Dawkins, where are Lieutenant Foxe's quarters located?" Javier demanded.

"Deck Five should I call Security and have them send him to the brig or maybe I should.." Abernathy started.

"Negative, I'll speak to Foxe myself," Javier replied curtly, "Tell Chief Suko she's in charge until I return. And you stay here." He pointed his finger at Crewman Dawkins. "Don't follow me." The engineer turned and left the room, leaving an uncomfortable looking Dawkins to contemplate the order.

"Yes Chief." Abernathy replied. Maybe I should warn someone or say something to security or to someone else but who do you comm? I don't want to get the Chief in trouble but he looks angry enough to rip Foxe a new one maybe I should just mind my own business I don't want to lose my job because I overreacted. The Chief's a reasonable person I bet he's going to speak to the lieutenant, yeah he won't do anything to him.

-Deck Five-
-Foxe's Quarters-

"Coming!" Jonathan Foxe yelled towards the door. The alert chime had been going non-stop and when he found out who it was at the door, well the party in question was going to get a dressing-down that would have made Gunny proud. He pulled on his boots then glanced back at a dozing Selena Raphael. Maybe these Hawking people aren't so bad, Foxe rationalized, Einstein and his freaks need to learn who's the Chief but after I get rid of him and his lackeys then it will be smooth sailing. The chime was annoying as hell. He stomped the boots on and paced over towards the front room.

"I said I was ****ing coming!" Foxe yelled at..Costala. The door slid back to reveal the engineer. And then the engineer's fist. Pain exploded in Foxe's head. He reeled back but was caught by the front of his uniform and jerked out into the corridor. Something smashed into his stomach and he doubled over, wheezing for breath. "Whaaaa.."

"Remember when that marine in the weapon's platoon disobeyed a direct order on Lambda III?" Javier seethed at Foxe as he grasped the engineer's shirtfront and pulled him erect. "Remember how many people got killed because of that douchebag? Nearly everyone in his platoon, because that idiot thought he knew more than the officers."

"So what? I'm not him. I know more about Engineering than you ever will.." Jonathan slugged the engineer with a right hook that came from no where. Costala staggered back and Foxe hit him twice more before the former marine deflected the punch and threw Foxe over his right shoulder. Foxe caught Javier's arm and used the momentum to throw the man down and away from him. Both men gained their footing at the same time and fell into defensive stances. "You think I'm going to take orders from you Einstein, with your songs and cake and other bullshit," Foxe spat, "You should have been bounced out of the Corps on the first day."

"Well lucky for me that responsibility wasn't your's," Javier said. "Gunny didn't think I was so bad."

"Gunny just didn't know," Foxe said before driving in with a combonation of punches. "He wasn't on the missions with you, I was."

Javier fell back, losing ground to the ferocity of Foxe's attack. A punch caught him on the side of the face and the engineer felt himself falling back, off balance. He grabbed Foxe's uniform as he fell back, bringing his knee up into Foxe's stomach and using the backward movement to carry Foxe over and behind him. Javier rolled over and then leaped forward from a prone position to smash his fist into Foxe's face. He drove the punch with his anger, intent on knocking Foxe's ass out. "**** you, I gave up everything to be a marine. What did you give up? Your trust fund?" Javier shot back at the man, knowing he came from a wealthy background.

The blow dazed Foxe and shook him to his core. He hadn't expected Costala's attack to be so strong. Staggering to his feet, Foxe through two more punches that hit Costala before running into what felt like a brick wall. The Chief Engineer's fist, split his lip, and sent the man down to the deck. He started to get up but Javier hit him again, flooring the officer with a hard right.

"You're relieved of duty, Lieutenant," the Chief Engineer told Foxe, speaking quickly because he could feel his face swelling from the punishment it had taken, "don't ever come back to Engineering, you're finished in my department. I'd advise you to transfer at your earliest convienence, maybe a smaller ship where you can enjoy your own little petty fiefdom." Javier turned to leave, staggering a little as the deck started to tilt. The corridor was full of people and Javier wondered where they had all come from.

"Daddy?"

Javier looked down to see Lia standing just behind Katie Ibrahim, hiding and yet peeking out to stare up at him. She looked petrified. Lia saw the fight. The realization that his daughter had seen him enraged made Javier sick. "Honey, it's okay," the engineer tried to say as he knelt down, his arms held out so she would come to him and he could hug her. "It's okay."

"Noooo," Lia sobbed and turned to run away, but there were too many people crowding the corridor, pushing close to see what had transpired in the small space. The little girl hid behind her teacher, hugging the woman, as if the thought of being held by her Daddy was a horrible thing.

"Lia? Lia, it's okay..I'm not going to hurt you," Javier pleaded as tears began to well up in his eyes. Christ, what have I done?

Katie lifted up Lia and held on tight. God, she is shaking so hard. She didn't want to pass judgment, this was so uncharacteristic of Javier that something must have provoked it…but wow did she regret letting Lia talk her into taking her to the library. "Not now, give her some time." And with an extra shake of her head she pushed through the crowd to take the sobbing child back to the schoolroom. I can take care of her there.

The engineer felt his heart sink as he watched Katie walk away with Lia. He wanted to curse loudly and emphatically but knew that such an outburst would not work in his favor.

"Commander, sir, could you please come with us?"

Javier looked up to find a group of security officers standing nearby. One was checking on Foxe, the other two were warily studying him. "Gladly," he answered with a sigh, standing to his feet and waiting for them to escort him to the Security Office. Before they had walked three paces the ship's alarm klaxons began to blare. Javier looked from officer to officer. "I need to go to my duty-station."

"So do we," one of the security officer's said.

=/\= All Crew, prepare for multi-vector assault mode. =/\=

"Now I really need to go to my duty-station," Javier repeated.

Featuring a Cameo by Katie Ibrahim.


Originally Posted by T'Shaini/02-22-2009 01:54:31 PM

USS Chimera
Deck 5-Schoolroom

At the salute, did I sound like I meant for him to salute? from David, it was only a quick jaunt to the new schoolrooms which were thankfully located on her floor. She herself had requested that she be given care of the schoolrooms in an emergency situations, she served little purpose on the bridge and she could not only provide support for the younglings but a last defense if necessary, the Vulcan reassured herself of the small phaser that was stowed where it would not be seen by the children and signaled the door to open.

Chaos…but with a different edge than the normal happy squeals that normally greeted her. Eli sat in the corner with his hands over his ears screaming, within a blink of an eye Lia had launched herself from Katie's arms into T'Shaini's, the words she spoke being drowned with her sobs. Children of all races were reacting adversely to the clamor of the alert…she could not blame them, it was deafening to her ears as well.

"Computer, take alarm sounds down three quarters." Suddenly the world flip flopped, instead of the klaxon drowning out the noise in the schoolroom, the crying and screams from the children of all races were now deafening in comparison to the background drone of the alarm. Katie and Baya began to gather everyone in one large group, sitting in a circle in the center of the room, a headcount disguised as a schoolroom exercise. Lia's words now vaguely intelligible between hiccups, T'Shaini began to hear things about 'Daddy was scary' and looked toward Katie with a worried glance. The teacher somehow managed to covnvey the idea that this discussion was too complicated to have at the moment with a shake of her head so the Vulcan just rubbed Lia comfortingly while the adults tried to distract the group with songs and stories…and might have been successful if it had not been for Eli's insistence that 'someone was coming to get them'. No matter how often he was told that it was likely just a training drill or exercise he could not be dissuaded, it made perfect sense, it had happened before… the counselor thought.

"Well, do you remember what happened the last time someone tried to get in the schoolroom?" Katie asked loudly? One by one all faces began to turn to T'Shaini. But it was not even me… Not that she would not have done the same thing, but it seemed somehow deceitful knowing the children had memories of her defending them. Another glance from Katie kept her mouth shut. A chorus of 'yeeessss' followed Katie's question. Katie registered the memory washing across her son's face and a smile lit her own. "So what would happen if someone tried to get in here again?"

"T'Shaini would kick their sorry asses!" Eli shouted triumphantly.

The aforesaid asskicker had to bury her face in Lia's hair to hide her expression as Katie's eyes widened in surprise.

"That was what you told me the other night when I said monsters were gonna come, that I shouldn't worry because if they did, T'Shaini would kick their sorry ass…"

Katie winced and peeked over at Tee. "Well that is what I get…I should know better than to say things like that, even if it is the middle of the night."

"YAY! T'Shaini will kick their sorry asses!"

The counselor felt her cheeks darken as she straightened up, this was certainly an improvement on the fear she had witnessed earlier. "Well, I suppose it could be worse…"

"It could be raining?" Katie said with a sigh.


Originally Posted by Harry Finn/02-22-2009 02:37:42 PM

::USS Chimera::
::Tertiary Bridge - Deck 9/Gamma Section::

“Make a hole,” Lt. Commander Finn shoved through the mess of crew who were clogging the narrow entrance to the bridge. “If you don’t belong here, be somewhere else.” The order was followed by a satisfying parting of the black sea of uniforms and he made it onto the bridge.

There was a moment when he had to stop himself from heading towards Tactical… which was already occupied by Cadet Wekesa… and redirect to the command chair. Taking the seat and calling up the appropriate data he tapped in a comm code, “This is Commander Finn to all Gamma section personnel. We will be going to vector in t-minus one minute. Prepare for hull isolation in t-minus thirty seconds.” He cut the com. If those assigned to Gamma weren’t in place by now, they’d just have to make themselves useful elsewhere. Drill or not, Harry was working in real-time battle mode. In moments after he cut the com a new sound overrode the continued blare of the klaxon… the tertiary hull had been sealed.

“Helm,” he addressed Warof, who’d won the Gamma lottery, “prepare to disengage, call up assault formation Omega 6-3-3-niner.”

“Assault formation Omega 6-3-3-niner aye,” the deep tones of the Klingon replied calmly.

“Tactical,” Harry carefully didn’t look to the young… sooo young… man on the station, “charge phasers and order full photon load prepped for launch.”

Over Wekesa’s echo and response he tagged the Captain. “Finn to Torrik, Gamma section is a go for separation on your Mark.”

There was a pause during which Harry could see the Captain deepening his focus… of course if he made use of the holographic com system he’d really be able to see it but… the bridge felt crowded enough already.

=/\=Mark=/\= came back from the Captain of the soon-to-be mini-fleet.

Harry nodded. “Helm you have a go,”

“Gamma section disengaging… now.”

As one third of the Chimera broke free to fly on her own, Harry sat back, forcing himself to allow the crew to do their jobs. This was, for him, the hardest part of his position; a hands-on type letting other hands do the work…

“Relax, Harry, they’re doing fine.”

He didn’t look but a small smile indicated he’d heard Attie’s reassurance and she, seeing his smile, allowed herself to wander over to Tactical where the young and… quite yummy… Cadet Wekesa was learning the ropes. Grimm wanted her perspective on the young officer’s performance and Atropos was nothing if not thorough.

Still not looking, Finn thought though he remembered the days when Attie had first observed him running the Tactical board. Not so young, but certainly new to war…

Wekesa, he figured, keeping a weather eye on the viewscreen while checking the vector of their ‘target’, was in good hands.

… with Attie


Originally Posted by Javier Costala/02-22-2009 10:19:13 PM

-Secondary Bridge-
-Deck 3-

Ensign Fuentas glanced over her shoulder towards the command chair on the secondary bridge. It was empty. Although her face remained impassive, Esperanza began to feel a mounting sense of trepidation. Lt. Commander Costala was no where to be found and the Gamma section had broken away and begun her tactical maneuvers. She glanced toward the Helm position where Katt Briggs had finished her pre-flight checks and was waiting for the order to go, then swept her eyes over to the Ops/Engineering console where Tehamia was bringing up the LRS systems.

"Lieutenant, maybe you should.." Fuentas started, about to suggest Tehamia take over when Commander Costala staggered onto the battle bridge. "Commander, you look awful," the tactical officer let slip before she could stop herself.

"Thankshh," Javier mumbled through a swollen jaw, "whatshh our statush?" The engineer took a seat in the raised center chair and glanced toward Tehamia.

"Bridge is standing by to retract couplings," the engineer said.

"Make it show," Javier said then winced in pain as his jaw throbbed. He gingerly touched the parts of his face that hurt the worst while Tehamia contacted the main bridge and prepared to disengage beta section from alpha section. An audible thump punctuated the process of the couplings being retracted.

"We're free Commander," Ensign Briggs informed him.

"Bring ush to forty-sixsh degreesh and hold in a flanking vector with the Gamma sectshun. Tactical, arm our weaponsh and bring ush to full battle readynessh," the Chief Engineer ordered.

"Aye Commander," Ensign Fuentas replied as her nimble fingers flew over the console. Torpedo tubes holding photon and quantum weapons came online and phaser arrays powered up at a touch of Esperanza's fingertips.

"I am surprised you would find time to memorize flight patterns, Commander," Clothos said as she appeared beside the command chair, "with all the time you dedicate to brawling and 'other' things." The A.I.'s tone of disapproval changed to one of begrudging acceptance, "However I find your knowledge satisfactory," then dipped back into disapproval, "even if your timing is less than exemplary."

"Thanksh, computer deactivate the A.I. and lock out her systemsh." Clothos turned to the officer with eyebrows raised before she disappeared from view. "I've already got a mother," Javier remarked, "onesh enough."


Epicenter 1944

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