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Part of USS Olympic: Mission 1 – Uneasy Alliance and USS Mackenzie: The Mackenzie Squadron – The Uneasy Alliance

08 – The Uneasy Part 1

USS Olympic
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“There’s no DNA.”  Dread tapped at the PADD, and the display in the autopsy room flickered to show the readings she’d found. Captains Walton, Crawford, and Basta stood around the bio-bed where the remains of the Changeling lay.  The skin had been peeled back in many places, and parts of the insides had been teased open in some cases and removed in others.  The face had been entirely removed, the skull cap had been surgically sawed open, and a brain sat on the scale.  Basta had retreated to a trash receptacle a few times while Crawford and Walton had looked on as Doctor Dread had worked step by step to evaluate the thing.  She pointed at the macabre DNA sequence that had shown up on the readings, “It’s all wrong.  The computer had a helluva time making sense of this in the first place.  I had to manually line up what made some sense, but it’s a real Borg puzzle.”

Crawford had stepped forward and examined the body up close, “I agree with Wren…this isn’t something the Founders or even the Breen could have come up with – this is new.”  He turned to Basta, “You report this to anyone?”

Basta grumbled, “Not even to my own Task Group.  I’ve had a hell of a time getting anything straight from them recently.  Even before all this went down…they’ve been more distant and less responsive than usual.  Some of us in the group have been talking about it.  Some are worried.  Others believe everything’s one big shiny Odyssey class.”

Wren asked, “And you?  What do you believe?”

He pursed his lips, “I think something’s going on.  Before, I thought it was just bureaucracy and ineptitude like it usually is…but this,” he pointed to the body, “…this changes things.”  He crossed his arms, “I’m old enough to remember the first go around…and the near coup we had. Sisko and his crew saved us all…this time; it’s not up to one guy…it’s up to everyone to try and figure this out.”

Walton asked the Chief Medical Officer, “How can we use this to detect them?”  It was the question everyone was wondering.

Dread shook her head, “I still have lots of work to do on this body to determine a definite path or process.  DNA seems to be the major factor here – it’ll confuse the computer and set off some alarms.  I can set up a detection program to run alongside any sickbay visits on the Mack and the Oly.”  She returned to the body, “If we ask everyone to give a tissue sample…that’ll start the panic.  I can require that monthly mandated department wellness exams come back from the dead.  It’ll be slow and bureaucratic…but it won’t set off any proximity sensors.”

The captains looked at each other and nodded.  Crawford gave Dread her order, “Make it so.  Let’s hope this is the only one we find.”