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Part of USS Edinburgh: Mission 1 – What Burns in the Darkness and Bravo Fleet: Sundered Wings

The Penultimate

USS Edinburgh
May 18, 2400
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USS Edinburgh – Briefing Room – 1800

Captain Rachel Harris stood at the far end of the table as the command crew of the USS Edinburgh filed in quietly and took their seats.  Her son, Ambrose, sat at the head.  He spoke first, “Good evening everyone.  We’ve completed our review of the data that was not turned over to us along with the interviews of the survivors of Rivax Colony.  Together with our science and medical department, the USS Polson’s science and medical teams have finished their evaluation of the colony attack.  We have determined that Commodore Patra was behind this attack as well as the recent incident that occurred a week ago at Starbase Bravo.  Given the depth of the threat and the lengths he has gone to up to this point, the decision has been made to confront him directly.  As we speak, our engineering teams and those from the Polson’s task force are equipping the three modules with additional weapons support.  The top two of them will be outfitted with forward and rear torpedo bays while the third that is under us will be equipped with an additional phaser array.  Additional power supports are being installed as well.”

Rachel jumped in, “Your mission directive is to focus on a diplomatic solution to the situation.  Any and all options are on the table for the Commodore – up to and including exile.”  She tapped at the console on the table as the images of the Larakas Colony appeared on the screens, “There has been some movement of his fleet in the last 12 hours that has given us an indication he may be attempting to shift his center of operations deeper into the sector.  The number in his fleet has not changed, but where they have been deployed – many of them have gone beyond our long-range sensors.  At this time, there is only one Warbird at Larakas.  It suggests we need to move quickly. As of an hour ago, that ship was still there.  You will depart immediately to the Larakas Colony to ascertain the status of the colony, Patras, and whatever else you can find.”  She looked around the table and nodded at the tactical and security chief who had raised his hand, “Yes Mr. Kondo?”

He sat forward, “The possibility of a trap exists within this.”

Rachel looked around the table, “He is right.  There is a chance it could simply be a way to draw you in and eliminate you.  What we’ve observed of the Commodore so far is that his plans seem to have more spectacle involved – the three ships he sent and the intended use of a unique weapon being an example.  His murder of the people on Rivax – was a public and explosive statement to those that stand against him.”  She turned back to Kondo, “I appreciate your concerns, Mr. Kondo…don’t ever stop voicing them.  We have confidence in this situation that a trap is not in the cards.”  She glanced around the table once more, “You have your orders.”

Ambrose stood, “Dismissed.”  He waited until they had left to turn to his mother, “I know…come back from this so we can hug again.”

A quiet smile was on her lips as she embraced him, “I didn’t know we’d be back together so soon, Am.  I feared the worst.”  She pulled back, her hands grasping his shoulders, “Patra blew my worst fears out of space and time…the danger level here has gotten dramatically more challenging, Am.  A mother is always going to worry and fret.”  He leaned down and kissed her cheek and she gave him a nod, “Good luck Commander.”  He followed her out to the bridge and watched the turbo-lift doors close on her.

Harris noticed Prentice was back at the helm as he sat in his chair, “Welcome back, Ensign Prentice.  Go to yellow alert.  Set a course for Larakas, maximum warp.”

Will ran his hands quickly over the controls, feeling a sense of cool ease settling into his heart, “Thank you, sir.  Glad to be back with you.  Course laid in.”

“Get us on our way – put us in motion, ensign.”

USS Edinburgh – Bridge – 1900

Prentice grasped onto his console, “We’re being fired upon!”  They had just dropped from warp and the ship was shaking.

Harris shouted, “Red Alert!  Get us clear.”  The Edinburgh’s shields held under the barrage of disrupter fire.  Prentice slammed the Edinburgh into a dive and swerve.

Kondo held onto his chair, “I have one Romulan Warbird on sensors – looks like they were getting ready to leave and we got in the way.”  The console trilled with further tactical reports, ”We have two scout ships that are headed towards the colony…sir, they’re armed with…”

The CO was reading the same from his console on the arms of the command chair, “Prentice, emergency intercept those scouts…now!”  Prentice quickly redlined the impulse drive as he adjusted their course.  Harris stood and spoke with Thasaz, “Try and hail them…warn them we’re going to stop them if they don’t surrender.”  He turned further to Kondo, “Target their engines and shields systems – we need them disabled but alive.”  He returned to the center of the room and watched as the scouts slowed for but a moment…but then their impulse engines fired red and moved perilously closer towards the planet.  He looked to his science chief with her earpiece.  She shook her head.  No response.  “Then we have no choice.  Open fire, Mr. Kondo.”

The Edinburgh rushed after the scouts and fired phaser shots with a torpedo chaser, targeted by Kondo on tactical who reported, “First scout’s engines are disabled…second…working on it.”  The ship shook as the Warbird woke up and began to let loose, trying to let the scouts complete their nefarious mission.  Harris gripped the arms of his chair as the ship shuddered under the intense fire until Kondo confirmed, “Both ships disabled and drifting.  They will drift into open space.”  The ship shook again and he glanced at his CO, “Shields at 75%, sir.”

Harris growled, “Helm, turn us around and face the Warbird.  Thasaz, open a channel.”  Another shake as disrupter fire continued.  She turned in her chair, “I have Commodore Patra, sir.”  The bridge went quiet as Harris stood and stared down the empty view screen.  The weapons fire had halted, for now.

“On screen.”