Part of USS Mackenzie: Mission 2: Wayward Sons and Bravo Fleet: Blood Dilithium

17 – Waypoint 4

Runabout Winona
11.2.2400 @ 1100
0 likes 739 views

“Six hours?  That is not enough time.”  Prentice grumbled.  He was working to move them from waypoint to waypoint as quickly as he could.  Science had to do its part in scanning long-range and short-range at each place that the Runabout stopped.  All the while, Kondo kept an eye on the tactical map in front of him, aware that the Devore signals he was seeing weren’t an accurate indicator of what was out there.  He turned back to Ensign Menzie, his eyes searching her tense face for any sign of a break in her concentration…or a breakdown in her ability to do the job.  When she had stepped onboard, he had observed her nerves were elevated, but her terse conversation with Cadet Harris had given him cause to worry.  The chief helm officer watched the screens from his position as the sensors worked their way through the list of signals, warp trails, incidentals, and accidentals that surrounded them in the blackness of space.  

Menzie’s mind was a torrent of rushing rapids crashing from worry to stress to anxiety to fears, dumping into her stomach where it churned the inner mud of her soul until it flowed back up to the top and careened back down the rock-filled path again.  She’d been confident in most things – she’d been voted most likely to be a security officer if science didn’t work out.  Now she was staring at signals of Devore bouncing around the sectors and systems in a rhythmic dance of death.  She was doing her best to focus on the work with the sensors, hoping they’d find something, anything, so they could get the answers they needed, get what they needed, and get the hell out of this place.

Kondo took one last look at her eyes as they flew from screen to console and back again.  She was working, and it seemed to be helping, “How long until the next waypoint from here?” he asked Prentice.

“Fifteen minutes to waypoint 5.”  He glanced at Menzie and lowered his voice, “We’re either going to have to hurry this up or skip a waypoint or two.”

The tactical chief shook his head, “We’ll work until the timer runs out.  Then we’ll decide what to do.”

Will gave him an expectant look, “That wasn’t part of the briefing.”

“We have to find them.  We won’t be able to get back in this space again – I’m not a diplomatic expert, but if the conditions of your stay in someone’s home have a time limit…I don’t think they’re going to let you back in again after you’ve left.”

Prentice groused, “Maybe they do things differently in the Delta Quadrant.”

Kondo laughed, “That’s the funniest thing I’ve heard you say in some time, Lieutenant. They do things differently here, that’s for sure.  Instead of rolling out the carpet, they roll you into the carpet.”  The confused look from the helmsman caused him to scoff, “Do people just not watch mafia movies anymore?  Honestly, we need to get you an education.”

Menzie came up for air, “I’ve got as few data points – sending to your consoles.  Sector clear.”  She leaned back in her chair.  They had nearly fifteen more waypoints to go.  It felt like an eternity.  The warp engines thumped into action, and they were on the way to waypoint 5.