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Part of USS Thyanis: The Raven of the Fourth and Bravo Fleet: The Lost Fleet

Act 2 – Part 3 ‘Away Mission’

Sickbay USS Thyanis
Mission Day 14 - 11:10 Hrs
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Dr. Xan finished administering her tests, finding the away team to be in mostly good health. She had detected some minor signs of cellular degradation, most likely caused by her chaotic attempts to snatch the away team’s patterns back from the grasp of the singularity’s gravity.

Alas, this was nothing a simple infusion of an off-the-shelf cellular stabiliser could not remedy and she went about administering a dose to each of the three away team members by way of a hypospray.

“You might find you experience some mild aches and pains for the next 12 hours, and a strange metallic taste in the back of your throat… this is normal and absolutely nothing to worry about,” she said, reassuring her patients.

“I’m sure we can handle it, Commander Tan tells me that we owe our continued existence to your quick assessment of the situation Doctor!” Wallace said, attempting to impart some gratitude to his Chief Medical Officer & Science officer.

“Did he now?” Molly locked her eyes with the X.O. across the room and chose to display him; a warm smile.

“He did, but you’re going to have to explain it to me again, now my head is a bit clearer,” Wallace added, having barely assimilated her shotgun briefing on the way to the sick bay.

“As soon as we dropped out of Warp, I started picking up some odd readings coming from Oppenheimer Station. At first, they seemed to be sensor glitches but as we got closer to the station I realised they were building in intensity.” Xan stepped over to a nearby trolly and picked up a PADD she had prepared whilst her scans of the away team were progressing.

“The readings I picked up, coupled with the strange behavior of the ship’s communication system lead me to consider an alternative explanation, and I concluded that the only model that fit all the variables exactly… was general relativity.” Xan handed the PADD to Commander Jones and began pointing out her annotations.

“Here’s a full breakdown but in a nutshell, There has to be a naked singularity aboard the station, one that isn’t properly contained so the effects of its gravity such as time dilation and redshifting of visible light extend outside the station… Had I not reversed the Transporter sequence, you would have materialised so close to the event horizon, that gravity would have scattered your molecules before you could properly coalesce!” she reported humbly.

Wallace flicked through the data on the PADD and began putting the pieces together in his mind, “So we can’t use the transporters, what about a shuttle?” He asked, looking between the doctor and his X.O. for answers.

“Theoretically possible sir, but it sure would be a bumpy ride.” Harris contributed, before allowing his ego to take over, “You’d need a skilled pilot to navigate the gravitational distortions, but I could do it no problem.” he bragged.

Wallace glanced at his X.O. over the top of the PADD, detecting the child-like desperate plea to be included in the away mission as if Commander Tan was holding a giant sign that said ‘Pick me.’

“Relax Harris, I wouldn’t trust anyone else to fly it,” he said, deciding to fuel his friend’s ego a little. “You and Dr. Xan get set up for pre-flight, I’ll have a security escort and an engineer meet you in the shuttle bay,” Wallace instructed, deciding that his own brush with death was enough excitement for one day.

“There’s one other thing sir!” Molly butted in just as Harris was getting up to leave. “The time dilation effect grows stronger the closer we get to the station.”

“What sort of an effect are we looking at Doctor?” Wallace asked, trying to search for the appropriate page on his PADD

“I’ve calculated that it’s currently at a twelve-to-one ratio between Thyanis and the station, so for every hour we spend over there, twelve will pass on the ship… This effectively makes all communication impossible, and it’s probably why the initial hail from the station was unreadable.” Xan explained.

“Understood, your priority then is to locate whatever is generating this singularity, and either contain it or neutralise it so we can restore communications. I don’t like the idea of being out of communication if the Jem’Hedar shows up.” Wallace said, his concern was evident in the tone of his voice. 

Shuttlecraft Corvus – 11:30 hrs


Harris maneuvered the small type 6 shuttle out of the bay with expert skill, it was not much smaller than the bay itself and the moment that he crossed the threshold into space, he could feel the effects of both the Lagrange cloud and the gravity from the nearby station fighting against his inputs to the controls.

Sat up front with him was Dr. Xan and in the rear compartment, two ensigns assigned as a security detail sighted in their phasers as the engineering technician sat quietly, trying to concentrate on keeping his lunch down.

The shuttle swung around the port nacelle of the Thyanis and began its bumpy approach to Oppenheimer with Harris wrestling with the controls constantly. Despite having to constantly adjust their heading, he barely broke a sweat piloting this small vessel and was almost tempted to perform some acrobatics and show off to his co-pilot.

He was both pleased to spend some time working with her but also felt a sense of concern for her safety on this away mission.

“We are approaching the ergosphere, gravimetric sheer is increasing; adjusting inertial dampers to compensate,”  Molly announced as she monitored her data.

Harris cracked a discreet smile seeing Molly work, his fondness for her was growing with every moment he was in her presence. “Can I ask you a question sir, off the record?” Molly asked, unable to contain her curiosity for much longer.

Harris was busy working the controls, but he was able to spare enough concentration to indulge in a little light conversation, “shoot,” he said.

“Back on the bridge, when I told you that we needed to recall the away team, how come you were so quick to trust my judgment?” Molly asked.

“What do you mean?” replied Harris

“Well, I’m officially the C.M.O, The captain only asked me to fill in as science officer because we were short-staffed. I expected to be challenged or at least asked to explain myself, but you didn’t do either of those things and just sent me down to the transporter room. Why?” Molly stopped typing at her console and swiveled her chair to look Harris in the face, genuinely curious why he placed so much trust in her so early in the mission.

Harris struggled to find the words to describe his thoughts at the time, he knew his reasons for trusting her were derived from his personal feelings, but he couldn’t express this to her right now. “We’ve spent a lot of time together the past few weeks, I guess my gut just told me to trust you,” he responded, trying to remain professional.

Molly was a little skeptical about Harris’s answer, she had spent the same amount of time with every other member of the senior staff, but she still felt that Harris placed an unusual amount of trust in her compared to everyone else.

“But I’m a Doctor, not a scientist. If Chief Catterick told you that you needed to lock phasers and open fire, would you have trusted him in the same way?” She asked, trying to chip away at Harris and get him to tell her the truth.

Harris couldn’t deny that he allowed his feelings to guide him, this was not proper protocol and perhaps may have been an error in judgment during any other situation, Molly had a point. “No, I wouldn’t…But you’re a joined Trill.”

“What’s that got to do with it?” Molly followed up, feeling she was getting closer to an answer.

Harris stuttered for a moment, he realised this interrogation was about to put him in a difficult position, he wanted to tell her the truth but it felt inappropriate to do so in the present company. Harris looked Molly in the eyes and made a deliberate glance toward the back of the shuttle to signify he was becoming uncomfortable talking in front of the ensign’s

“You know what… It doesn’t matter, But thank you for trusting me… it means a lot.” Molly ended her pursuit and refocused on her tasks at her console, having registered Harris’s almost adorable reaction to being put under the microscope, she smiled having obtained as much information in what Harris didn’t say as what he did.

“Approaching the main shuttle bay, given the time dilation I think hailing them is a waste of time… no pun intended” Harris announced as he plotted a landing trajectory.

Molly tried to contain a quiet giggle as Harris was clearly still recovering from her uncomfortable line of questioning. 

The shuttle gracefully crossed the forcefield of the main shuttle bay and touched down softly in one of the vacant landing pads, as her systems spooled down the ramp at the rear and deployed fully; allowing the two security escorts to exit first and secure the landing zone. 

They were followed moments later by the rest of the crew who all took a moment to observe The Thyanis through the massive open shuttle bay door. She was holding the position with her bow pointing roughly toward the station, and much like Harris and Molly had observed on the bridge, the effects of gravity were now causing a blue shift in the visible light spectrum.

Molly deployed her tricorder and began to scan for the source of the gravimetric distortions, “Im reading the strongest concentration to be roughly five decks above us, we should look for a command console and try to narrow it down some more.” She suggested.

“Alright, everyone with me,” Harris assumed command and rallied his team to get to work, “Remember for every hour we spend here, it’s twelve on the Thyanis!”