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Part of USS Odyssey: Between The Feathers Of Destiny and Bravo Fleet: Sundered Wings

History In The Making

USS Odyssey (NCC-80000), Edge of the Romulan Neutral Zone, Beta Quadrant
Stardate: 63769.2 (8th October 2386)
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“Are you certain it’s them?” McCallister checked from where he was sitting. He peered over the shoulder of his wife’s console to be certain they had found what they had been searching for.

Nodding to confirm, Reyas pointed to the live sensor readings coming off from her long-range scans. “Look here, the subspace distortion is pretty big for it to be something that natural plus the increase in gravitational energy suggests the use of several micro artificial quantum singularities.”

Glancing at the readings she was displaying on the primary science station on Odyssey’s bridge, McCallister couldn’t argue with her conclusion. “Then I think we’ve struck gold.”

“Does anyone want to shout out dabo then?” Commander Cambil asked, sarcastically, from the security and tactical station. 

Chuckling a bit at his chief security and tactical officer’s suggestion, McCallister didn’t comment back as he got up and prepared for their next move. Moving across the room towards the centre of the bridge, he was joined by his first officer. 

“JP, could be the real McCoy? Commander Zachary Hawkins asked quietly the captain. Concern was clearly etched into his tone.  The informal approach was something the two of them had been trying recently to build a decent and trustworthy relationship between them. They were still in their infancy of developing their dynamic as captain and first officer, but they were getting there. Slowly. The use of McCallister’s nickname was something the captain had insisted that Hawkins did when it was just between them. 

“We can only take a look, Number One,” McCallister replied with a sigh as he crossed his arms against his chest. He knew they were risking quite a bit chasing this lead-up but McCallister felt it was the right thing to do. Turning to his pilot, he looked down at the young Betazoid at the helm. “Tremt, the moment we have a positive lock on coordinates I want you lay in an intercept course that keeps us on our side of the border.”

Hunsen turned his head just over his left shoulder, “Sir, if these scans are correct they’re moving at a speed less than warp five plus they’re not quite in the Neutral Zone yet.”

“Then ahead warp seven and get us as close to them as you can without making a crossing.” McCallister commanded as he moved towards his chair. Hawkins joined him as they both sat down in their chairs almost at the same time. 

Hunsen nodded as he adjusted the ship’s heading and took the ship to warp speeds.

“Captain,” Lieutenant Duncan said from the chair to the captain’s left, “I’ve been reviewing these files from that merchant we helped, I’m concerned if these people would want our help.”

Turning to his chief counsellor and chief diplomatic officer, McCallister looked at the lieutenant for further clarity. “What makes you think that, counsellor?”

“Just reading over these transcripts between the merchant and those he interacted with, I’m convinced they will see the Federation as the last port of call they want to go to,” Duncan stated. “Which I know is something that most refugees from the Star Empire feel now, but I’m not sure how successful we’ll be here.”

“That’s not a tone of doom, I hear is it, Max?” McCallister quietly asked. 

Duncan looked at his superior, “I’m just trying to be pragmatic here, sir. Other Starfleet ships have reported serious confrontations from other refugees they’ve encountered. We should prepare for the same.”

Hawkins smirked at how Duncan had just answered their superior. Being the man who had served under the counsellor’s father for a long time, he knew when he was channelling his inner ‘Luke Duncan’. He knew that the counsellor was worried that Starfleet would be on McCallister’s back for undertaking a possible wild-goose chase when the Federation had pulled out of the Romulan evacuation efforts. “I don’t think there’s any harm in us investigating a possible security concern to the Federation’s border.” He looked at Duncan and gave him that look to get on board with using that as an idea to get them around the issue of the top brass being annoyed with them. 

Catching on, Duncan nodded. “Well, a possible task group of seventy-two ships so close to the Federation space is suspicious.”

“We need to analyse the threat on all levels” Hawkins added with a wink.

McCallister looked between both men and shook his head. “Are you two quite finished?” He asked before turning his focus to his counsellor. “Anyway, if that merchant turns out to be selling us false information then I’m sending you back to her, lieutenant.”

Duncan shuddered. “Really, sir?” 

“The DaiMon appeared to like you a lot.” McCallister teased.

“Pimping your counsellor out to the local Ferengi business – is that against Starfleet regulations?” Cambil asked from behind Hawkins’ chair.

“It certainly is.” Duncan protested, appreciating the slight support from the Bajoran security chief. 

Turning around in her chair, Lieutenant Ky’Limonagutrei looked at the others. The Efrosian woman seemed bewildered by the topic being discussed. Pushing her pure white long straight hair behind her left ear, she was intrigued to know more. “Sir,” She said looking at the captain, “do you honestly believe that DaiMon Deliaros truly had a sexual attraction towards Counsellor Duncan?”

Laughing at the lieutenant’s direct, blunt and purely innocent tone in asking such a question, McCallister held his breath before he answered her. “I’m not sure if that’s true enough but she certainly enjoyed negotiating with him.”

Turning to Duncan, the ops manager continued to be intrigued by the matter. “Did you not enjoy her calling you ‘honey’?” 

“That I could cope with,” Duncan answered, “it was the constant drinking that got to me Ky’Li. I don’t think I’ve had so much anti-intoxicant pumped into my blood since my academy years.” He rubbed his forehead at the thought of how much he had to drink with the Ferengi businesswoman as a sort of trauma he had to endure.

“I take it then you’ll be detoxing for the next month, then Max?” Hunsen asked his friend from the helm.

“A month?” Duncan countered back. “More like the rest of the year.”

A warning started to go off at Reyas’ station which caused everyone to stop their conversation. McCallister looked over to his wife, “We got a probably, Karyn?”

Peering over the update from their sensors, Reyas nodded. “The subspace distortion just entered the Neutral Zone. I’m getting a better reading of what it is now we are closer. I am detecting a range of vessels, all ships, sizes and configurations. I think we’ve found our missing convoy.”

Hearing this, McCallister ordered the ship to go to yellow alert. “Ky’Lie, send a message to the vessels, introducing them to who we are and inform them we are approaching them to determine their intentions.”

The Efrosian woman nodded as she proceeded with her work. “Message sent.” She confirmed.

“Tremt, how long until we intercept?” McCallister checked with his pilot.

Hunsen looked down at his console and then back up before answering. “Another hour at our current speed.”  

“Increase our speed to warp nine.” McCallister commanded.

Leaning in slightly, Hawkins spoke close to his captain’s ear, “Would it be advisable we inform Starfleet what we’re investigating?”

“Not yet, Number One,” McCallister quietly said shaking his head. “I want to get a bigger picture here, but have the Aquarius prepared and ready for immediate launch.”

Alarmed at hearing his captain’s order, Duncan shot a look at him. “Sir, they may not pose a tactical threat to us.”

“Thay may not, but I’m not taking a chance. If Karyn’s scans are confirmed of finding clues they’ve got artificial quantum singularities in their ships, then we don’t know what they’re punching.” McCallister said, easing his counsellor down. 

“Sir, we are being hailed,” announced Ky’Li after the incoming call alarm went off at her station. “It’s the lead ship.”

Hearing that, McCallister gave a look of concern and intrigue to both Hawkins and Duncan before he stood up. Tugging on his jacket he nodded to his ops manager to open a channel. “Open a channel.”

The viewscreen changed to show a close-up view of a Reman. The camera feed was zoomed in so much everyone on the bridge could see the yellow around his eyes. Odyssey. We…are the Reman mining vessel, Loruk. I am Captain Veruk.”

“Captain Veruk, I am pleased to see…”

“Do not approach our convoy.” Veruk stated instantly interrupting McCallister.

Taking back by that, McCallister remained composed in his response. “Your convoy is pretty close to Federation space, I want to know why.”

“We are fleeing to our home.” The Reman answered before closing the channel instantly.

No one said anything for a moment.

“Well he’s not the chatty type, is he?” Hawkins said to no one in particular. 

Sighing somewhat, McCallister considered his next move. “Number One, inform Starfleet what we’ve encountered and see if there are any other Starfleet vessels nearby.”

“Are we really going to confront them, sir?” Duncan asked with a slight tone of concern.

Turning back around and returning to his chair, McCallister gave his response as he sat down. “I want my answers, lieutenant and I won’t have a massive number of ships sit so close to our border without knowing what is going on.” 

“Understood, sir.” Duncan said, showing his support for the captain’s decision.

“Tremt, go to maximum warp,” McCallister ordered the pilot before giving out his next order. “Red Alert, all hands to Battlestations!”

If the convoy was a tactical threat to Federation space, then McCallister wouldn’t turn up without being prepared fully. 

“Message from Deep Space Nineteen sir, the Miranda, the Roehampton, the Thesis, the Gryphon and the Akagi are being sent to support. They’ll hold a position near to us on our side of the border, awaiting your instructions. Other ships are being called in but it will take some time.” Hawkins reported.

“Good, let’s hope seeing a range of Starfleet’s finest so close by would be enough to get Veruk to open up a bit more.” McCallister said as he tightened his grip around the edge of his armchair. Would he be sending the request for them to join them in stopping a large convoy of ships from entering Federation space or would they be coming in to help refugees? 

He just hoped that Veruk didn’t force his hand.

Comments

  • Flashbaaaack! Here we go. Get everyone CGI'd to be fourteen years younger. It's a good indication of how everyone's changed, both in profession and manner - younger Max in particular is quite strikingly more flappable. It's a curious situation they've found themselves in here in 2386, but also interesting with last chapter suggesting Odyssey didn't leave the region on a DARK note... we shall see.

    June 1, 2022
  • I enjoyed this blast from the past story, it kind of starts to put things in perspective of what their current mission is going to be. I think it's kinda cute and funny how some of the officers are picking fun at Duncan about the Ferengi 'flirting' with him and such. I can't wait to see what happens next in the Odyssey's adventures!

    June 1, 2022