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Part of USS Odyssey: Like Father Like Son

The Chamber of Secrets

Unknown Alien Vessel, Delta-Beta Quadrant Border
Stardate: 76754.86
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The spiral staircase they were forced to go down took them into a dark chamber. One step on the deck plate was enough for a sensor to be triggered, instantly making the lights come online and reveal to the team what was down here. 

The chamber was no chamber, it was a long corridor and settled into the walls were alcoves. Within the alcoves startled everyone on Keli’s team. Plugged into the ship’s power system, standing there so silently without realising they had visitors were humanoid children within stasis tubes. Standing perfectly straight up, each tube showed the cold cryogenic chambers had perfectly preserved each child. Ranging in all sorts of ages, Keli went up to one and noticed straight away the alien looked almost human in appearance. If she hadn’t known better he looked like a teenager, almost sixteen or seventeen or maybe eighteen. She couldn’t be precise. Wearing only a skimpy looking pair of grey shorts, he had what appeared to be a cortical monitor attached to the side of his forehead. Several lights pulsed slowly, almost in a heartbeat rhythmic fashion. Though he was young and appeared to have an almost defined muscular physique, there was a sense of fragility in his appearance too. His expression appeared to etch his innocence. Looking at the tube next to him, a similar boy in a similar state stood. He looked a bit younger but had similar features like the first one. Brother perhaps? Keli wondered.   

Tapping her combadge, she called the captain and informed him of what they had found. 

“Standby lieutenant, I’m preparing to send a medical team over with Commander Duncan and others.” McCallister responded.

“Understood sir. We’re going to set up more transporter enhancers, but tell them that EVA suits are not required. Life support and environmental controls appear to be working.” Keli shared as she took off her helmet after doing more checks to ensure her and everyone else’s safety.

Several moments later and Commander Duncan materialised along with Doctor Slyvexs and a group of her colleagues from sickbay. 

Duncan walked over and conferred with the lieutenant about what they had found. 

“Are they all children?” Duncan asked as he looked at the first young man she had encountered.

“From what we can tell, so far yes.” Keli answered as she observed the Denobulan doctor scan everyone in the first section. 

“All of them appeared to be in a good state, health wise.” Slyvexs commented on. She looked at the first officer. “Commander, I suggest we scan each stasis tube to determine everyone’s health status.”

“And counting how many there are.” Keli suggested. 

Agreeing with both of them, Duncan nodded for them to proceed before he called back to the Odyssey. “Duncan to Odyssey.”

“Go ahead Number One.” McCallister answered. “How’s it going over there?”

“Slyvexs has determined the first group of youngsters that Lieutenant Keli has found are well, we’re going ahead in checking the others and determining how many there are here.” Duncan stated as he looked around at the other. “However, sir, now we have our secured footprint here I’d like us to bring over more teams to explore the ship further, perhaps have Commander Hunsen come over with an engineering team too.”

“I anticipated your request, Number One and I’m prepared to send over automated search drones to assist with the searching of that ship.” McCallister announced. “We’ll prepare more teams and have them board the ship via shuttles and runabouts at other ports.”

“Very good, sir.” Duncan answered back. He looked back at the young man he had originally set his eyes on. “That said sir, I’d like to see if we can find out more information about these children. Who left them here, why are they here, who are they. Could Lukiz come over and assist with accessing their records?”

“Absolutely. I’ll send over Tomaz, Samris and Flemen too to assist. Odyssey out.” 

The questions about these children continued to pique the commander’s curiosity further. Keli approached him. 

“I can’t help but wonder who would send their children out into deep space and leave them like this?” Kelis pondered. “Could they be the last hope of a fallen civilisation? Or are they here out of choice?”

“Too many questions to ask, lieutenant.” Duncan said, agreeing with her line of thought. “We certainly could do with more help to determine those answers.”

“Indeed.” She said, looking at the young man again and appearing quite saddened about the situation. 

Elsewhere, Doctor Slyvexs continued with her investigation with others from her team and some of the Hazard Team members. “That’s almost one hundred and sixty two children so far.” She stated.

“I can’t believe the diversity of ages either.” mentioned Lieutenant Jisaraa. “From babies, to toddlers to children to teenagers. What is this place?”

All of a sudden and out of the blue a holographic being fizzled into life before them. A tall humanoid woman with long blonde hair that draped over either of her shoulders stood before them. Wearing what appeared to be a long blue robe, the hologram came to life and began sharing a pre-recorded message. “Hello, if you are seeing me then you and any of your companions have said a series of words that have activated my program. Welcome aboard the Quirennal, one of the last remaining colony ships of my people. If you have discovered the underground chambers, I ask that you show the utmost respect for the mission of this ship and preserve our children. My people are a dying race and it is more than likely we no longer exist. To ensure we survive we have sent many of our young out into space in the hope they will be found by others who will be kind enough to raise them and protect them.”

She then appeared to pause. Reeling from the shock of the program that came out of nowhere, Slyvexs called for Duncan to quickly join her.

The first officer jogged quickly along with Keli to the doctor’s position and was impressed to find the holographic being standing still before them. Slyvexs repeated what they had heard before Duncan approached the hologram. Looking at it, he wondered if it could interact with him. 

“Hello?” He said to it.

Unfreezing the hologram looked at him. “Hello.” She said with a smile. 

“Who are you?” Duncan asked.

“I am an isomorphic projection of Captain Jystar, mother of Jorgeh and Wylem. I was the mission commander of the Quirennal, however I have created this interactive photonic matrix to allow those who visit this ship to understand what has happened and to listen to my request.” Jystar answered. “Please state your identity.”

“I am Commander Max Duncan of the Federation starship U-S-S Odyssey.” Duncan said. “Is your request for others to look after your children?” 

Nodding slowly a few times, Jystar answered him. “It is. Our children are our only hope to ensure our species survive and continue to exist. From the ship’s records, I have determined that you are the first to board our vessel. Will you fulfil my request?”

Looking at Slyvexs and then back to the advanced hologram, Duncan hesitated at first. “I think we need to have more questions answered first before we make a final decision about it.”

“Very well, I have full control of the ship which includes access to its vast database. Please ask your question.” Jystar said.