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Part of USS Hypatia: Rift in the Stars and Bravo Fleet: Labyrinth

4 – Voyagers

Unknown Part of the Galaxy
Day 1
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An entirely new area of the galaxy, an area of space that looked pristine and untouched by the rest of the universe, instantly erupted into chaos as an all too familiar lightning storm in space quickly exploded into a wormhole exit aperture. Mere seconds later, and at a speed far quicker than had perhaps been intended, a massive metallic object emerged from the tunnel, bringing debris and plasmatic emissions that threatened to pollute the heavens surrounding it. Once the burnished behemoth had drifted far enough from the aperture, another eruption occurred until the wormhole vanished from existence, leaving no trace that it had ever been there. Hypatia was here. Wherever ‘here’ was.

Coming to a halt in the dead of space, the majestic starship finally had the time it needed to regroup, her crew the time to seek the answers on everyone’s lips; where were they, and how the hell were they going to get back? With their sensors still damaged, they would be limited to how quickly they could get those answers, but it did allow injuries to be tended to and other systems to be healed.

“There’s nothing on short-range sensors that could give away our location,” Commander Burton pursed her lips at the CONN, reviewing the navigational logs carefully. “There is nothing on sensors at all except…”

As her words trailed off she garnered the attention of the Captain, who felt well enough to get to his feet again and join his helmswoman at the front of the bridge. “Go on,” he urged her, using the backrest of her chair to support him as required.

“Sensors show a planet, some three thousand kilometers from our position,” Maddie told him, fingers still dancing on the CONN.

“And you can’t use the system’s star to try and pinpoint our location?” the Trill asked, somewhat confused.

“I would if there was one,” Maddie shrugged.

“It’s a rogue planet…” Onsas grinned, looking more than a little excited as he took a few steps down from the command deck and joined the Captain at the helm. “Captain, we may be able to ascertain our location through further studies of this planet,” the scientist enthused.

Giarvar, still visibly struggling from his head trauma, rubbed his temple. “Number One?” he called out a few seconds later, for some reprieve rather than anything else.

“I think it’s worth a chance,” Tharia agreed, wandering over to their position. “Until we can get long-range sensors back online, it’s probably our best shot,” the Andorian advised her captain.

“Very well,” Giarvar winced. “Onsas, have your team study this planet. Peri,” he called over to the tactical chief, “I want you to work with Maddison on her analysis of this wormhole we just travelled through. Anything useful you can gleam might help us figure out where we are, or how to get back,” he advised the two more senior members of his team.

“Aye Captain,” the Bajoran tactician agreed.

“Italia,” Kauhn turned to Ops, “see what you can do to help T’Kir with repairs. While we’re just sat here, it makes sense we put everyone to work,” he instructed the Italian.

“Sì, Capitano,” Ruas smiled, forcing herself out of her seat and heading for the aft turbo lift, only for the doors to part and spew several people wearing blue uniforms onto the bridge, led by a Cardassian woman with her hair scraped back into an efficient bun.

Breathing a sigh of relief, Matheus waved Lieutenant Iddar over to their position and filled her in on the wounded on the bridge, including the captain. She pulled out her tricorder and began to scan the man whilst his irritation levels grew.

“Captain,” Keshah smiled, “I’d like to get you to sickbay and have Doctor Okan take a look at you. Commander sh’Elas can handle things up here for a while,” the Cardassian advised, glancing across at the Andorian.

“You have your orders, Captain,” Tharia smiled. “I’ll fill you in if anything changes,” she added.

“Alright,” he agreed, much to everyone’s surprise. Time and again he seemed to confound the critics and prove himself to be a far cry from a traditional commanding officer, leaving the bridge under the care of the medical team, looking over his shoulder as Tharia assumed command for the time being. She had his ship, for now.


Commander Peri and her colleague from the CONN had completed their short trip to deck twenty and the sensor analysis lab when they were accosted by a young woman seemingly patrolling the deck in search of someone… anyone.

“Commander!” the young blonde ran right up to the Bajoran, stopping just inches away so she could almost collapse to her knees and get her breath back.

“Ensign…?” Peri looked more than a little confused as the woman, unknown to her, got her breath back. A quick glimpse towards Maddie, and she too confirmed she had no idea who this young woman in science blue was.

“Peters…” the youngster panted, “Skye Peters… It’s ok ma’am, I wouldn’t know me either,” the scientist smiled between breaths. “I only arrived a few days ago… astrometrics specialist…” she panted.

“Astrometrics, huh?” Peri grinned, placing an arm around the young woman. “Why don;t you come with us and tell us what you know,” the Bajoran led the newcomer into the sensor lab, followed swiftly by the CONN officer. Sitting the woman in blue on one of the stools, the Bajoran talked her through some breathing exercises until she was composed enough to share her knowledge.

“Alright Skye,” Maddie sat on a stool opposite the scientist and gave her full attention to the younger woman. “What do you know?”

“Well, we were analysing the nebula’s data as it came in, including the information about the two aperture’s that we experienced. This is no wormhole we encountered,” the blonde told, spinning on her stool and accessing the data console behind her.

“We figured that out already,” Peri told her, standing beside her stool, arms folded across her chest while watching the astrospecialist at work.

“I’ve been studying spatial phenomena my whole life Commander,” Skye told excitedly, “and when I tell you this is no wormhole, I mean this is no wormhole.” She pulled up two different diagrams on the display. “Here we have two apertures. The left, the mouth to the Bajoran wormhole, is nearly three times the size of the ones we encountered in Vadlox, on the right, and far less volatile. None of the distortions we detected at either end of our journey,” she smiled.

Seeing no real connection from the tactical chief, she looked towards the helmswoman, hoping she would be able to find some common ground with a navigator of the stars.

“So its a micro wormhole?” Maddie asked, confused.

“No,” Skye sighed. “What analysis we managed to gain from the probe and our own sensors showed us one other thing.” She changed the screen to show a larger representation of the inner workings of the tunnels themselves.

“A wormhole tends to get you from A to B, unless there is, like Barzan, an unstable element at one end or another,” she continued, tracing her fingers over the display, “but this is a network of tunnels, with apertures all over the place, some permanent, some randomly forming.”

“Did we stumble across the Borg transwarp network?” Peri’s arms dropped to her side as the recollection of something she had studied suddenly dawned on her, scaring her more than she would care to admit.”

“No, but something similar,” Skye shook her head vigorously, then zoomed her display in. “See how there are no manmade structures maintaining the tunnels? These are natural. And there has only ever been one Starfleet ship that has encountered such a network before,” the scientists’ eyes were wide with excitement as she looked between the two senior officers.

“I know this one…” Maddie inched forward to the edge of her stool and leaned closer to the screen. “It was in the seventies. Voyager, I think it was. She was lost in the Delta Quadrant for a while,” the helmswoman told, drawing an enthusiastic nod from the scientist.

“That’s right,” Skye confirmed, “and while she was there, Voyager reported encountering a corridor of tunnels controlled by a species called the Turei. Starfleet has an agreement in place for use of the tunnels throughout the Gradin Belt, but we had no idea they spread this far.”

“And you found all this out from just the few readings we got from the probe and the short time we were in the tunnel?!” Peri looked more than a little impressed as the youngster nodded swiftly.

“Download everything you have and come with us,” the tactical chief instructed, pointing to a data PADD on top of the console they had been working on.

“We’re taking you to the bridge.”

“The bridge?!” Skye stopped dead in her tracks, the blood draining from her face as she swallowed hard. “I’ve, um, never, um, been on the bridge before…”

“And I’ve never been a scientist before, but you’ve just taught me more in five seconds than I could have imagined,” the Bajoran grinned. “You’re going to share it with the senior staff.”

“Oh…kay…” the wide-eyed look of fear failed to disappear as the youngster took several deep breaths and tried her best to compose herself.

She’d been on her first assignment for a matter of weeks and, now, she found herself on the cusp of her most important briefing ever.

And she was damn close to bricking it.

Comments

  • Great introduction of the new crewmember Skye, being so excited to share her finding only to make a honey trap for herself by getting sucked into the "Ahh you found it, you share it" task. Poor Skye, the girl will break under the pressure of nerves. Great post!

    July 14, 2024