Part of USS Corax: Supplies and Suspicions and Bravo Fleet: Blood Dilithium

Chapter 5 – Rough Landings or Shaken, not Stirred

Delta Quadrant
Nov. 2400
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Taking their stations upon their return to the bridge. Aris took his seat and contemplated the stars streaking past the viewscreen for a brief moment. “Emma, status update?”

Emma turned her chair to face the captain. “Course corrections have been laid in, Sir. We are still a couple of hours out from arriving at the source of the distress call.”

“Thank you, Ensign.” Aris nodded. “Drop us out of warp as soon as we enter the sector, I want us to make as low a profile as possible.”

“Aye Captain.” Emma replied as she turned to face the helm console. Making minor corrections to the ships heading and warp field.

The next few hours passed in relative peace compared to the evolving situation outside of the safety of the ship. 

“Captain, we are approaching the sector of space provided to us by Stockton.” Emma reported as she dropped the ship out of warp.

“T’Keterk, anything on sensors?” Aris questioned toward his Engineer.

“Negative, Captain.” T’Keterk replied. “Sensor readings are encountering interference due to the subspace disruptions, but nothing we need to be concerned with yet.”

Aris nodded as the ship accelerated to the small planetoid they believed was the source of the transmission. “Keep us out of sensor range for as long as possible, Emma.”

“You got it, Captain.” Emma replied as she fine tuned her chosen route.

“T’Keterk, be prepared to reroute any additional power to inertial dampeners and shields.” Aris continued.

“Sir?” T’Keterk questioned.

“Trust me on this, Lieutenant.” Aris solemnly replied.

Nodding, T’Keterk diverted his attention back to his console.

“Emma, tell me are you familiar with The Picard Maneuver?” 

“Of course, Sir.” Emma replied with confusion drawing on her face. “Wait….you’re not planning to…?”

“Correct Emma, once we are in range, on my mark, execute a short range warp on our approach directly into the upper atmosphere. I intend to leave a sensor echo behind to discourage any potential pursuers.” Aris replied as he got to his feet and made his way over to the helm console and placed a hand on Emma’s shoulder.

“I have the utmost faith in your skills and abilities to pull this off, even while correctly anticipating our next move, you’ve got this.” Aris murmured to the young Ensign. “I know this was not how you thought your first tour of duty would be, but I don’t trust anyone else to make this happen.”

Steeling her resolve, Emma nodded, determination now replacing the confusion and unease.

“T’Keterk, on my order, launch a subspace relay probe, this will help maintain communications and will appear as if we are in orbit, when we will already be in the planetoids atmosphere.”

Retaking his seat, Aris faced the viewscreen. “All hands strap yourselves in and adopt brace positions.”

“Captain.” T’Keterk voiced from the engineering console. “I would like it noted in the official logs I find this course of action reckless and impulsive.”

“Thank you Lieutenant.” Aris almost smiled. “Your concerns have been noted and are appreciated.”

“Sir.” Emma called out to Aris. “Ready to execute jump on your command.”

“Thank you Ensign.” Aris replied. “Red alert, Prepare for warp jump in 3…..2…..launch probe.……1……execute short range warp jump”

As the small raven class ship entered Warp, the inertial dampeners took away most of the shuddering as the ship accelerated through the resistance of the atmosphere. It was not the smoothest of rides however.

“Report.” Aris called out.

“Inertial dampeners are holding steady for now, but won’t last much longer under this sustained stress.” T’Keterk called over the noise and the alerting consoles on the bridge. “Microfractures are developing along the dorsal hull and shields are down to 83%.”

“Prepare for rapid deceleration.” Emma called as her only warning before she dropped the ship out of warp into the planetoids upper atmosphere. The whine of the inertial dampeners taking hold really did highlight the stresses he was putting the ship under.

Letting out a shaky breath as the ship slowed to thruster speed, Aris let a small laugh escape. “Let’s not attempt that again any time soon.”

“I’m with you on that, Captain.” Emma replied just as shakily. “Warp jump successfully executed.”

“Thank you Emma.” Aris replied. “Put the ship into blue alert and find us a serviceable place to touchdown. We don’t want to draw too much attention that we are here.”

The wailing red klaxon was replaced by the blue alert indicator. “Computer mute alert sounds.”

“Captain, mid range sensors have determined a suitable location to land a small distance from the vicinity of the distress call, but far enough away that we shouldn’t appear on sensors if the power supply issue is a ruse.” T’Keterk reported as the sounds on the bridge returned to a more manageable level.

“Position looks defensible if we encounter any unsavory characters or wildlife.” T’Keterk continued. “We will need to make some minor repairs on landing if we want to make it back to space.”

“Thank you T’Keterk.” Aris responded. “Transmit landing coordinates to the navigation computer and prepare for landing.”

As the Corax began her descent, Aris could not fault the location T’Keterk had determined.

“Extend landing struts.” Aris requested. “Let’s get us on the ground and pray to whichever deity is out there that we were not seen exiting warp.”

 

Comments

  • Wow executing the Picard Maneuver was risky, especially in such a Raven. I enjoyed that Aris was reassuring Emma about her ability to execute such a maneuver and how T'Keterk didn't like the thought. As such a maneuver was risky and it damaged the ship a bit before they actually came out of warp within the atmosphere. Now, I am curious to know what will happen next. Will they find the people who sent the distress call or is this some sort of ruse? Great job at setting things up!

    November 27, 2022
  • I enjoyed the sense of danger you're building toward in the Corax's jaunt to the planet. The way you described the physicality of the strain on the ship was effective, and the characters' uncertain reactions to the orders added to the tension as well. The use of the Picard Maneuver was a cute callback. I'll be curious to see if it was successful in hiding their approach from whomever might be watching!

    November 27, 2022