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May 25, 2024

‘Captain. Captain!’


Consciousness came swimming back, and with it a thudding pain in his temples. Kehinde Hargreaves groaned in what he knew was a most un-captainly manner as he sat up. Commander Vorin was kneeling beside him, his XO’s eyes narrowed with more concern than she would normally show.


‘Present,’ he groaned. ‘What’s our status?’


Vorin didn’t answer at once. She turned back to the shadow-shrouded bridge of the Caliburn, pitched first into gloom by the red alert he’d called as they’d lost control of the ship, then into darkness when they’d lost all power. Emergency lighting gleamed enough to show the silhouettes of his crew, battered and flung about by the phenomenon, but more or less intact.


‘Medic!’ Vorin called, before helping Hargreaves back into the captain’s chair. Only then did she give her report. ‘We were pulled in by the aperture. Lost power. Now we seem to have passed out the other side of the phenomenon. We’re still restoring systems.’


‘Sensors are back online,’ his science officer called, a haggard figure barely on his feet. A beat later, a low oath was muttered. ‘Sir, this can’t be right.’


A medical tricorder was in Captain Hargreaves’s face by now. Politely but firmly, he pushed the medic’s arm to one side. ‘Less disbelief, more facts.’


‘According to this, we’re back in open space… but at least forty thousand light years away from our last position. Somewhere in the Gamma Quadrant.’ A beat passed, a beat filled with the silent shock and gasped disbelief of the battered bridge crew, until the young lieutenant drew a sharp breath. ‘There’s more, sir. I’ve found a match for our readings of that subspace aperture…’

In this Fleet Action, titled Labyrinth, the Fourth Fleet responds to a phenomenon occurring all over the known galaxy: the sudden, disruptive appearance of volatile subspace apertures. Ships have gone missing within them and gravitational disturbances have caused untold chaos to their environs. Early reports suggest this phenomenon is not new, however. It has been encountered by Starfleet before, albeit only in the depths of the Delta Quadrant.

Somehow, the tunnels of Underspace have opened across the Milky Way. But why? And how? The opportunities for scientific exploration and understanding are limitless. But with it may come chaos in an already unsettled galaxy…

Labyrinth will be a story of several parts: the chaos of Underspace tunnels opening everywhere, the opportunities for Starfleet to explore places they could never conceive of reaching, and the political ramifications of the expansion of such a network. While there will be opportunities for stories about desperate survival or cagey, tense confrontations, it will first and foremost be about Starfleet embracing the scientific opportunity of a generation.

This Fleet Action will not include the Mission Briefing system of the FAs of 2023. That format suited past campaigns about a focused military defence, or investigating a specific mystery, but Labyrinth is far more open-ended, and the discoveries to be made in our galaxy boundless. As such, Labyrinth will have its own mission-generating system, something wholly new to Bravo Fleet, which reflects the simple truth about this change in the galaxy which all captains must accept: Be ready for anything.


Look forward to more announcements and teasers in the coming weeks as we approach the next Fleet Action!