Part of USS Liris: A simple delivery of medical supplies

Free of the nebula

Prancis nebula
April 2400
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As Sh’ill pressed the button on his LCARS console, the phasers fired a wide burst and the ships around him slowly started disappearing. One by one, they were gunned down, and their holographic selves disappeared until only one remained, it alone looking a lot less threatening.

“Now let’s see what these so called Eka-Borg have to say. Computer, hail that ship.” The computer chimed as he said this, and opened a voice-only channel to them.

“Why have you decided to stop me here and threaten to assimilate me?” He asked, noting the fact that they hadn’t appeared on his viewscreen yet, but that was to be expected of the Borg, and evidently, of this… version of them.

“We are the Eka-Borg. Lower your shields, and prepare to be assimilated. You are outgunned.” The voice responded, still monotonally, but now with a hint of anger.

Sh’ill quickly moved to the helm of the small bridge, and sat down in the helm officer’s seat, getting ready to escape if need be. He started quickly an escape route into a denser part of the nebula, while trying to keep the attackers distracted.

“I find that doubtful, you have a quite a small ship, and from what I can see on my console, not as many guns as I do, and that says a lot for a Raven class.” He was toying with the other Captain or whoever, noting the fact that he heard only a singular voice, not a collective, not multiple people, just a single, highly robotic voice. As he said this, he finished programming the escape route, and now moved to look at the sensor readout to see what the other side of this comms channel was doing.

“Believe me, Captain, we have a lot more than you know… those sensors aren’t accurate, you know.” The Borg’s tone was almost… laughing, giggling, expressing… emotion? No, how could that be?

“Well, in that case, see you out by the rest of the fleet where you can go get obliterated. Best regards, Sh’ill of Cait Prime.” As he finished the sentence, he closed the comms as fast as he could, no doubt leaving the Eka-Borg confused, and then hit full impulse and a 180 back into the depths of the nebula, towards its core where it was the hottest and densest.

As he entered it, he noted the alert on his console trying to tell him of the increasing hull temperature, but he decided to ignore it, as going back out where it was normal wouldn’t be a good idea. The pressure continued to increase as the hull slightly, very slightly creaked.

“That can’t be good. Well, let’s just hope this doesn’t get any worse.” Sh’ill thought to himself, now looking out the viewscreen at the brown nebula with its strands of orange and red mixed in, making it both beautiful and terrifying, depending on if you know how the ship is faring against it.

Meanwhile, the Eka-Borg were faring much worse, their little but mighty ship made of scraps and whatever they could find without leaving the nebula. Pressure increased, hull creakiness levels increased, and finally they turned back towards their asteroid base, not wanting to blow up under the pressure.

Sh’ill stopped his ship in the middle, now the hull at 75% of the maximum pressure the hull could hold. He turned on his short range sensors, and set them to look out with all the power the ship could muster at the moment. Nothing yet, nothing yet, there, there the escaping ship was, leaking a bit of plasma out of its outer hull, a bit smaller than before.

“Guess they got smashed a bit like that human delicacy, the potato crisp.” Sh’ill pressed some buttons, and powered down all non-essential systems, including life support on the other lower 3 decks of the ship, not wanting to waste power.

“And now we’re going to study these people, Liris.” Sh’ill had already started talking to his ship, trying to get more comfortable with operating it. He made the sensors follow the ship right back to its base.

“Computer, show me where that ship is heading imposed on a map of the nebula. Also include all mapped asteroids and objects in the nebula. Put it on the portside secondary monitor.” As he said, he walked over to said monitor, and had a look at the map. It seemed to him that the ship was headed straight to an asteroid, almost as if it wanted to crash into it. As the little green dot was approaching the asteroid, it seemed that it was… landing on it? As he continued to watch it, he saw that it was in fact, not landing on it, but in it. He saw as it entered into the asteroid on the 3D map, and stopped.

After seeing this, he was left dumbfounded. “Are the sensors malfunctioning or something? Or have I had too many Nepada leaves?” He is, of course, referring to what humans call catnip, but he is unwilling to acknowledge the fact that he enjoys something so childish.

“Computer, confirm that the enemy vessel landed inside the asteroid, and if affirmative, perform a diagnostic of the sensors.” Sh’ill walked over to the center of the bridge, and sat down in the command chair, relaxing back in it, and putting his hands together, and joining his furry fingers together in something like a large fist.

“Affirmative, vessel has entered asteroid. Performing diagnostic.” After a long pause of about 2 minutes, and lots of data flashing by on the MSD, the diagnostic was complete. “Sensors are functioning with 100% efficiency, and are functioning normally.”

“Hmm. Cut power to anything non-essential, route more power to sensors.” Sh’ill quickly said to the computer, and moved back to the helm. What he was planning to do was to make a pass-by of the asteroid, and take some scans to determine what was going on in there.

He powered his engines back up, and started moving in the direction of the asteroid at full impulse, trying to get by as fast as possible. “Computer, as soon as this ship is within 300 kilometers of the asteroid, slow to .8 impulse, and when we move back out of this range, go back up to full impulse.”

“Confirmed, adding to flight plan.”

Sh’ill moved ever closer, still, it seems, undetected by the asteroid, a side effect of the half powered down state of the ship, he thought to himself.

 

As he flied within the aforementioned radius of the asteroid, something happened to it. It started glowing, and emitting large amounts of stray energy. Sh’ill knew what was happening.

As soon as he turned hard to starboard, away from the asteroid at full impulse, the asteroid exploded, sending flying pieces of rock everywhere, and not much else. Pieces of exploded technology were everywhere, now inactive, in shards.

“What the…” Sh’ill quickly turned to the aft camera, but didn’t see much there. There truly was only a small cloud of dust, some pieces of exploded tech and hunks of rock. Sh’ill turned the Liris quickly, and passed by the cloud once again. He beamed aboard some of the pieces of tech, and whatever was left of some of the drones.

 

As Sh’ill entered the now lit up transporter room to have a look at what he had beamed aboard, he was taken aback. The corpses were… definitely Borg, but something was off about them, they were… bulkier, they had more tech on them, and it looked more advanced than the Borg tech he had seen at the Academy, or in holodeck fighting programs.

He kneeled down to have a look at a dismembered head, and it was no ordinary head. The eyepiece was bulky, made out of some material that he had only seen in labs up until this point. Everything looked like that too, bulky, new, incredibly resistant.

Sh’ill sent the bodies to the cargo hold, which he then sealed off with Level-10 force fields and flooded with 50 liters of liquid nitrogen to make sure that nothing in there was moving or getting out, just in case.

After making his way back to the bridge, he set course straight to Aldebaron III, warp 8.