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Part of USS Jaxartes: Undercurrent and Bravo Fleet: Labyrinth

Part D: Between A Rock…

Underspace Corridor
4th September 2401
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Captains Log: Supplemental

 

We’ve been stuck; half buried on this slowly spinning rock for three days now as we make our way down what both Commander Salan and Ensign C’Rren agree is an ‘Underspace Corridor’.   How one came to be in Federation space or how an opening into it was concealed within Harpers Rift; or where the undercurrent of this cosmic river is taking use, no one has any answers.

 

Repairs to the ship are coming along nicely, and other than the complete failure of the warp core, I think we got off very lightly.  The main concern now is how we get off this rock and where do we go from here?

 

<End Log> 

Jason Devron placed the Padd down on the large table in the aft observation lounge, though right now there wasn’t really much to observe on account of the windows still being covered by the powdery black substance.  There was evidently a perfectly logical and understandable reason behind it.  The particles where mostly made of iron and travelling through the aperture had created a positive magnetic charge over the hull of the ship.  So when the ‘Jax’ struck the asteroid’s soft broken outer layer, a lot of the debris kicked up had stuck to the hull, coating it in a thin layer.  As the charge dissipaters over time, some of it will simple fall off or float away.     

He’d called a meeting to discuss how things were progressing, but had given himself a few minutes beforehand, just to make the log update, before the rest of the staff arrived.  They came into the room more or less together; Lieutenant Stuart took her usual seat to his left and Commander Salan selected the one to Jason’s right.  It still felt odd issuing orders and instructions to a vastly more experienced and senior officer; but them Vulcan’s never really aspired for command, they just did their duty.

Devron waited till everyone was seated; only Ensigns Harris and Cho, remained on the bridge. “Right, first off.  Mr Torf, how is the work coming along on the warp drive?”

The Betazoid sat forward a little, placing his clasped hands on the table. “Well as your aware when the ship was dragged here all matter/antimatter reactions within the warp core ceased.” He let those words sink in a little. “As yet we’re been unable to establish why, but all the antimatter within the chamber, effectively became inert.” 

“Myself and Crewman Appleby ran every scientific test we could.” Added C’Rren. “It’s a mystery to use.” 

The Chief Engineer continued with his report. “I have to admit, cleaning out the chamber by hand, was rather a novel experience.”  He took a moment to recheck a couple of his figures on his own Padd. “Utilising the reserve tanks as we are at present, all systems should work normally.  But I’d caution against going beyond warp 2.4.”  

The Captain thanked him for all the effort he’d put in over the last few day.  Warp 2.4 may not seem much in this day and age, but whilst stuck on this asteroid, they weren’t even travelling at one millionth the speed of light.  He now turned his attention to the rest of the ships systems, as the meeting continued.

Short range sensors were now operational, though the composition of elements within the asteroid was still giving issues.  External cameras were now working along the port side and aft section.  All phasers appeared functional though some of the forward emitters were damaged which would mean a greatly reduced arch of fire.  None of which however mattered as it appeared whilst within underspace they couldn’t fire the weapons. 

“So then.” Devron finally said.  “Thoughts and options of getting us off this rock?”

“Manoeuvring thrusters could shake us clear.” Offered Lieutenant Stuart. “Most of them are still in working order.  Just numbers 3 and 7 were beyond any chance of repair.”

“Detonating a carefully placed torpedo to help dislodge the ship.”  Was Tholakath’s answer to the problem. 

“I would urge extreme caution before resorting to anything of that nature.”  Commented Salan. “We don’t have a full analysis of this asteroids composition.”

“The Commander has a valid point.” Responded Devron.  “I want you to look at both ideas though.  You have until the end of today to give me a full breakdown of figures, understood?”

Everyone made their acknowledgements. “Right, dismissed everyone.” The Captain announced.  “Doctor if you’d mind stopping a moment?” 

She merely shrugged in response and waiting for everyone else to exit the room. “Look we’ve got nothing to talk about.” The doctor finally shouted.

“Look I’m sorry!” Were the only words that Devron could think of at that moment.

“I came to you confused and afraid.” Phoebe yelled. “And all the time you knew what was happening to me!”

He could see the anger and the tears welling up in her eyes. “I was told that the best way to protect you was not to say anything.”

“What gives you the damn right to choose what I know or don’t know?”  The Doctor paced back and forth a few times, before she faced Devron again. “Then out of the blue you tell me the reason I managed to break a Vulcan Mind Meld and Helgeshran’s control over the Commander; is because my father is part of the Continuum and I’ve inherited some of his powers!”

“I honestly thought I was doing the right thing.”

“I’m surprised you haven’t asked me to use my Q magic and lift the ship off this lump of rock!  Or maybe I should just click my fingers and transport use all to Risa?” Phoebe clicked her fingers, but of cause nothing actually happened.  She dropped unceremoniously into the nearest chair, dropped her arms and head on to the table and started crying.  Jason rushed over to the young Greek woman and put his arms round her.  Now was not the time for words, and right now he had none to give her.  But regardless of what lay ahead, he would do all he could to help her. 

            **********

In another part of the ship there was another discussion going on about the current situation.  Three crewmembers sat together around one of the tables in the crew mess, eating. 

“You know we wouldn’t be stuck here like this if the Commander was in charge.” Announced Rahul, waving his empty folk around in the general direction of his to companions seated opposite.

“And how do you come to that wonderful conclusion?”  Appleby replied. “Do tell us Einstein.”

“Vulcans are logical and careful in their approach to anything.” Was Rahul’s answer to the question. “He wouldn’t have taken use headlong into the Rift!” 

“Look you have no idea what we’ve been through.”  It was N’Quith this time who voiced his opinion.  “You only joined after Frontier Day.  The captain has got use out of many a tight situation.” 

“Only by getting you into them in the first place.” Retorted the Indian firmly. “The man’s a danger to anyone that serves under him.”

“Just you watch your mouth.” N’Quith shouted.

“He’s going to get the lot of us killed.  Mark my words.” Rahul jeered. “And your too stupid to see it.”

The fist was quick and accurate; N’Quith had swung and made contact with the side of Rahul’s chin, before anyone had time to react.  The blow knocked the Indian half off his chair, the fork in his hand spinning off somewhere and clattering on the floor.  Appleby put his hand on his friends shoulder and crewmembers seated at another table took hold of Rahul. “I suggest you find somewhere else to eat.” Urged one of them.  He shook himself free of their grip, grabbed the plate with his half eaten meal and stormed out. 

            ********** 

The following day was half way through, when something knew appeared on the ships scanners.

“Captain, vessel approaching.” Called out Harris from the helm seat.

Devron sat forward. “Any idea what and who it belongs to?”

Tholakath at tactical ran a more detailed scan. Then he turned to the Lieutenant, a clear look of confusion and surprise on the Cardassian’s face. “It’s Devore warship.  Closing fast!” 

At that moment Jason’s heart sank, could anything possibly get worse?

Comments

  • I think what really got me here was the way the Dr just broke down after the meeting and the cold comment she gave at first. I am interested to see how the interactions between the two go from here on out. The other dynamic of the crew who were questioning the Commander being in charge is another interesting way to do the story. Not that mutiny is going to occur but just the possibility of what could be. This was a great entry and I am interested to see what is going to happen now that the Devore ship has arrived to throw even more kinks in the plan.

    June 21, 2024
  • The tense situation can be felt in this story, the given situation and options opt to get the Jax free is very vital and yet need to be carefully considered. Hearing the news or even processing the news that someone is related to the Q can make your day a different one, but not a great one. Then the tension builds up in the mess hall and rightfully so, even if the young Indian joined only after Frontier Day, it can be seen that way. But the Jax getting into a tighter spot with the arrival of that unwanted guest. Great post!

    June 21, 2024