USS Edinburgh – The Castle (bridge) – 2100
“Commander, we’re arriving in the system,” Prentice announced from the helm. He was feeling better and had been keeping his appointments with both doctors. He still had work to do, but he felt comfortable being back on the bridge.
His CO stood from the chair, “Put us in orbit of the planet, Mr. Prentice. Lieutenant Thasaz, open a channel please.”
The ship shifted towards the planet, Glasea. Silence held on the bridge until Thasaz reported, “We’ve got the planet’s Governer Tasawa responding.” He gave a nod and an elderly Romulan in ceremonial dress appeared.
“Commander Ambrose Harris of the Federation Starship Edinburgh…we understand there’s something going on with the moon?”
A sigh as the man shook his head, “Not going on…but haunted. I am Governor Tasawa. The moon is called Pasari and she has watched over us for hundreds of years – always helping us grow our crops and keeping us safe from the world outside.” He wheezed and coughed hard before he continued, “A month ago, she changed…she turned a darker red for a few days…then back to her normal hue. Our crops began to wither…no matter how much we watered or fertilized.” He shook his head again, “We must have disappointed her or something. She has always been there to help us and grow our food. Our best scientists have tried to understand, but we are at a loss. We heard from a trader about the awful things that have happened to the Empire…and that the Federation was coming to help.” He endured another coughing fit and drank a cup of something which seemed to help, “We reached out for your help with Pasari…maybe you can speak with her…treaty with her? We have not had spaceships since we landed here hundreds of years ago – they became our homes…and we have tried hailing her with our equipment but she remains silent to us.”
Harris had many questions. During Tasawa’s report, Doctor Reid had stepped onto the bridge and taken the seat to his left, her eyes focused on the elderly Romulan. Ambrose remained standing, “Governor, has she ever spoken back you before?”
“We have never attempted to communicate with her – it was strictly forbidden in our scriptures from the First Days. We committed the sin in desperation.” He coughed again, “Our water storage containers are full enough for now, but…our water wells have dried up. We’ve tried to trace them back into the depths….but we’re afraid of losing more of our people to whatever lives in the deep.”
Reid leaned forward in her chair, “Governor – Lieutenant Jordan Reid – Chief Medical Officer. I am so sorry to hear of your troubles…”, the Romulan nodded his thanks as she continued, “…what do you mean…lose more people to the deep?”
He grumbled, “We foolishly sent three of our scientists down to the caverns where the wells pulled from – fifteen minutes after they descended we heard faint screaming and shouting…then nothing. We tried to scan for them…but our sensors are unable to penetrate that deep.” He coughed again and it took him a moment and a drink of liquid before he could speak again, “We do not often seek outsiders for anything – we’ve lived here on our own with Pasarfi and ourselves living a life apart from the Empire….and we find it pleases us. Yet – we cannot reach to her ourselves.”
Jordan stood from her seat and stood alongside Harris, speaking low, “Commander, I’d like to request myself and a medical team be sent down there to do some medical care…we can also examine the crops and water supply for clues.” She glanced at the elderly Romulan, “He is not well, sir…and may need some care.”
Ambrose gave her a quiet nod and she left for SIckbay. “Governor Tasawa, we’ll go and take…look and try and speak with Pasari. I’d like your permission to send down Lieutenant Reid and a medical team to make sure you and your colonists are well.” He turned to his science chief as he saw doubt and concern cross the face of the man, “Would it help if I sent my science chief, Lieutenant Thasaz?”
His eyes met with a fellow Romulan and searched her face before giving a quiet nod. “It would help to have a face of our own. I am thankful for you, Commander. We have heard much of the Federation and its Starfleet – you have cast doubt on the rumors that are often spread amongst us.”
Harris gave a quiet nod, “Then we’ve done our job, Governor. Our medical team will be on the surface shortly.” Thasaz left the bridge as he spoke. The channel closed and he turned to the rest of the bridge crew, “Let’s play this nice and easy – that moon is a God who has been very good to them…let’s take it slow whatever we do. Mr. Prentice, once the team is on the planet, lay in and engage a course to Pasari. Ensign Fowler? Take the science station please.” Sadie looked up from her station in The Tower with a start but made her way to the station and took the seat, hesitantly. The CO walked to stand beside her, “We’re going to need to understand as much about this moon as possible – you’ll need to assign tasks to those in The Tower and the other science team’s stations on the ship. We’re going to rely pretty heavily on you because I know you and the rest can do it.”
“Yes…uh…Yes sir.” Sadie felt a little dizzy at the sudden move to centerstage but she’d been practicing her breathing…so it was helping.
“Good. Welcome to the big show, Ensign.” Harris returned to his chair as Prentice announced the away team had transported to the planet and the Edinburgh was on an intercept course for the moon. He took a breath and watched as it grew larger on the screen.