Tapping away at the holographic interface he was using, Commander Hunsen was running another check on the ship’s preparations to create an inverse warp field. It was the last job for him that he knew he needed to complete before calling it a day. The captain had requested for it to be set up in preparation for them possibly needing it if they had to deal with any more fierce ion storms while closing the various subspace rifts that were popping up all over the nebula. The final adjustments to the warp core were almost complete. His team that was on it were almost complete with the modifications, which meant they could bring the inverse field the moment it was required. With a swipe of his hand, Hunsen closed the display and then issued his final orders to the gamma shift leader that was coming onto duty. Spending almost all day in engineering with only an hour’s break earlier on in the day, he was ready to have a quiet night in and go to bed early.
Sensing the arrival of a familiar presence, Hunsen turned around to see Counsellor Horin entering engineering. Gazing around the room, she looked as if she was taking in everything that she saw while also appearing to be on the search for something.
Laying eyes on him, she smiled genuinely and walked across the room to where he was sitting on a stool by the primary command interface. The huge control console, also known as the engineering ‘pool table’ was a huge rectangular interface that had various readings dotted around it, giving everyone an insight into the ship’s current status.
“Counsellor, this is an unexpected pleasure.” Hunsen said as he rose to meet her.
Wearing her blue duty uniform, she maintained her smile as she approached him. “Well I thought I should visit engineering at some point. Seeing as I am a qualified bridge officer, I wouldn’t want to embarrass myself in front of the captain by stating I’ve never been down here to the heart of the ship.”
“Indeed.” Hunsen agreed. “Can I give you a tour?”
“Of course not, I’m happy to look around myself, if that’s okay? I’m sure you’re really busy.” Horin said, showing her appreciation for the offer but insisting he didn’t show her any preferential treatment.
Shaking his head, he told her he was just about to leave and would be happy to show her around. “Obviously this is the main engineering for the whole ship, but when we separate there’s a secondary engineering room in the chevron section of the ship.”
“Yes, I read that when I was studying the ship’s specifications.” Horin stated.
She was about to ask another question when an alarm went off on the pool table. Excusing himself from her attention, Hunsen looked back at what the computer was reporting. Before he had a chance to truly read everything, the ship started to rock and more alarms went off.
“What’s happening?” Horin asked, concerned.
“The ships’ hit some rough waters,” Hunsen answered back. “We’re caught in a huge gravimetric surge?”
“One of the ion storms?” Horin guessed.
“Could be, or it could be another subspace rift.” Horin answered. “Damn it,” He cursed as several more systems started to send up more alarms. “Red alert!” He ordered the computer.
The intercom then went off a few seconds later with the captain’s voice. “Bridge to engineering, Tremt what’s happening? Lukiz is stating our inertial dampeners are being overloaded. Do we need to drop our anchor and activate the inverse warp field?”
“Inertial dampeners are not the only thing being affected, sir, whatever we’ve hit is de-stabilising the warp core. I can’t activate the field!” Hunsen reported.
“Shut down the core then.” McCallister order.
“We’re attempting to do so now, sir.” He worked hurriedly to stop the core from overloading and breaching, but everything he did to stabilise the situation was not working.
Tapping his combadge, Hunsen spoke up. “Sir, whatever has opened up and is affecting us, I can’t counteract its influence over our systems. We may need to consider separating the ship.”
“Understood,” McCallister answered. “We’ll begin emergency procedures at once.”
Before Hunsen had a chance to make another move to save the ship, the Odyssey was struck hard by a powerful white and blue bolt of lighting from out of nowhere. Smacking directly into the side of the ship, the force of the strike was powerful enough to enter the ship and interact with the ship’s warp core.
“Everyone get out of here. Evacuate engineering!” Hunsen ordered as he watched as the warp core began to fail. There was nothing he could do. “Computer prepare to eject the warp core. Authorisation Hunsen omega phi nine three.”
“Warp ejection system enabled.” stated the computer.
As he started to move across the engineering deck, he noticed that Horin was waiting for him. “Let’s go.” He ordered her as he stretched open his arm to go around her but he didn’t have a chance to touch her as a bolt of lightning escaped from the warp core and hit Hunsen straight in the back, forcing him to fall to the ground.
At the same time the computer made an announcement. “Warning, warp core breach in thirty seconds.”
Screaming at watching Hunsen fall to the floor with a thud, Horin dashed to his side to check his vitals because instantly she lost the low level telepathic link they could sense for one another as fellow Betzoids. Seeing he was hurt with burns across his face, Hunsen reached out to her with his left hand. Grabbing it instantly into one of her own hands, she told him to rest as she tried to get him help.
Whispering with the last breath he could give, Hunsen coughed before he told her one thing. “Dump it Louwanna, dump the core.”
Hunsen then lost consciousness completely and his stretched out arm fell to the deck plating.
Holding back the tears, Horin looked up and saw the warp core was going wild. “Computer, repeat the request to eject the warp core. Authorisation Horin Delta-Five-Seven-Alpha.”
“Eject the warp core.” She ordered.
The sparks from the ejection charges went off as the warp core was sent flying out of the ship.