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Part of USS Jaxartes: Into the fray and Bravo Fleet: The Lost Fleet

Part C: Rendezvous

Federation-Dominion Territory
March 2401 Mission Day 11
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Despite having the benefit of the considerably more powerful warp drive originally meant for much larger vessels and being able to reduce its overall warp bubble as a result of this size difference; the USS Jaxartes was unable to maintain the vastly improved speed all the way to the Deneb Sector.  But a journey of such a cosmic distance in nine and three quarter days was still immensely impressive at least for a Raven class Corvette.

For anyone in a position to see her on this mammoth journey they would have probably felt they were seeing things.  The nacelles on the pod being used as their main propulsion where just over half the length of the ship itself and twice the diameter of its own nacelles which for the most part had remained in standby mode.

_____

Two hours before the USS Jaxartes was due to drop out of warp one final time; Jason Devron gathered every member of the crew together in the aft-observation lounge, other than Stuart who remained on the bridge to monitor everything.  It was a slight squeeze in the lounge, but he hoped to keep things brief and allow them all to get back to their duties.

“For almost all of you, other than training ships, the Jax is your first assignment.” He used the shortened version of the ships name, something he rarely did himself, though he’d often heard other crew members say it. “A lot of you were involved in the incident with the Orions and you know those we lost in connection with it.”

He paused a moment knowing some of them still felt they should have done more to defend the ship when it was boarded.  But there was not one of them standing before him, who’d been present that day he could find any fault in.  “We are heading towards an enemy far more cunning and deadly.” He let that sink in and watched their reactions. “I’m sure none of you when you joined up expected to be flung into a war.  I know I didn’t.” Most heads nodded in agreement to that last statement. “Many of you have family member who were involved in the Dominion War or will have heard a lot about what happened. I do not believe this will be much different.”  There were a number of worried and concerned faces around the room.

He spent the next few minutes briefly outlining the plans as he knew them, which for now wasn’t all that much.  Responding to a number of questions posed to him along the way. Of cause there where some questions that couldn’t yet be answered.  Jason hoped to gain a better understanding of the current situation once they arrived at the pre-arranged co-ordinates for their rendezvous with the USS Los Angeles under the command of Captain Oteng.

Another pause, Jason had gone through what he was going to say a dozen times, altered it deleted it then started again, only to leave the Padd sitting on the table before him and just say what he felt they needed to hear.  It would never go down in history as a rousing speech, but he hoped it would help. “Part of our duty is to protect and defend the Federation and those that need our help. I have every confidence that you will carry out your duties with the utmost diligence and dedication.  Above all make yourself proud to wear those uniforms, and make me proud to have the honour of being your captain.”

“To your duties dismissed.” He added with crisp authority. Over a dozen voices came back as one. “Aye captain.”  That one gesture of unity struck him.  A small ship like a Raven needed a crew that worked well as a team; events had drawn them together, Jason hoped that would be enough to see them through the dangers to come.

Everyone exited the lounge, either in silence or talking in whispered murmurs to those next to them. Only his long term friend; if two years could be called long, Dinari remained behind after the rest had gone. “I seem to remember a certain cadet bottling it when he had to give a short talk in front of his fellow students.” The comment was made in good humour.  It had been Dinari would found Jason under a tree in one of the many open spaces around the academy buildings.

“Trust me it felt no easier this time.” Came the reply. “And jumping out the window isn’t an option open to me!  I only hope I can fake enough calmness to lead them into battle.”

“Commander Salan believed in you, so do I.”  The young Chief Engineer tapped his friend and captain on the shoulder and walked from the room.

_____

By the time they were due to reach their destination Devron was back on the bridge sitting in the captain’s chair lent forward hands clasped together.

“Approaching designated co-ordinates now.” Lieutenant Stuart announced from the helm.

“Picking up the USS Los Angeles on long range scan.” Added Tholakath.  “Signs of a recent engagement within the last 24 to 36 hours.”  As they dropped out of warp close to the other ship the young Cardasian spoke again. “She’s powering up her weapons and preparing to fire!”

“Who at?” Devron yelled

“Us!”

“Shield’s” Devron turned his head to the left. “Ensign Cho, can you raise them?”

The young Korean woman sent out a general message to establish contact with the other Federation vessel. But not before a phaser blast from the Los Angeles had struck them“I have them captain.”

“On screen.”  A head and shoulders view of Captain Oteng appeared on the main viewer at the front of the bridge. “This is the USS Jaxartes, Lieutenant Devron, commanding.”

“I am Captain Fabien Oteng, of the USS Los Angeles. What do you think you are doing, Lieutenant?” His voice was terse and under controlled anger.

“Fourth Fleet gave orders to rendezvous with you and give whatever assistance you required.” Jason replied slightly hesitantly. “We took the liberty of using an extra drive to get here as quick as possible given the current circumstances.”

“Right; makes sense. Explains the bizarre shape of your ship. Why don’t you beam over, Lieutenant. There is a lot we need to talk about. Los Angeles out.” Captain Oteng’s voice came across abrupt and the communication was ended rather swiftly.

“Bridge to Engineering. Sorry about the jolt we just took.  A slight misunderstanding.” Devron called over the comm. “Prepared to separate when you’re ready.” Jason ended the call and stood up from the captain’s chair. “Lieutenant Stuart.  The ship is yours.”

_____

Down in Engineering, Lyambo turned to his Betazoid co-worker. “A slight misunderstanding he says! He exclaimed throwing both arms up in mock disappear. “Right you set about resetting the gravity back to normal whilst I convince the computer to say bye to its new friend.”

Ensign Torf merely chuckled to himself before setting about his task, whilst the Chief Engineer began the process of disengaging the pod both electronically and physically; the latter part only requiring reversing the polarity of the magnets which currently held the separate drive unit to the upper hull of the corvette.

_____

In the transporter room Devron; Padd in hand, signalled to the crewman operating the controls that he was ready to beam over to the Los Angeles.  Every atom of his body was disassembled and sent racing across the empty void between the two vessels, only to be reformed a second or so later on the a transporter pad aboard the Los Angeles. “Lieutenant Devron reporting.” He announced once is body was completely materialised. “Permission to come aboard?”

Comments

  • Great continuation of the story! I love the detail about the odd shape of the ship but talk about an entrance! If Devron doesn’t have nerves of steel after this, he never will have. I liked the briefing scene, and his thoughts about the speech. The stand out line for me was Lyambo’s about convincing the computer to say goodbye to it’s new friend :) Looking forward to reading more!

    May 27, 2023