Part of USS Pioneer: Mission 1 – Operation: Shadow Strike and Bravo Fleet: The Lost Fleet

O:SS – Chapter 9

U.S.S. Pioneer
March 2401
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Captain’s log, Stardate 78173.9, with the changeling infiltrator found and neutralized, the Pioneer continues on course to Saxue to find and destroy the ketracel-white facility. Repairs on our shields are nearly completed, Lieutenant Commander Beya estimates another thirty minutes until they are operational again, which also means we will have our refractive shielding advantage back. The crew feels the loss of two of our senior officers, Lieutenant Commander Jack Sanders and Lieutenant Broll, but have found new determination and drive to ensure this mission succeeds. Not only for the ones we lost, but for everyone else out there that’s fighting this new threat as well. The Pioneer will succeed, as it always has in its past… it has to. 

“Captain, we are approaching the nebula, ETA for arrival five minutes.” Kyth said, pressing a few commands and still plotting trajectories and course changes. 

“Understood.” Kosev said, then tapped his comm badge, “Bridge to Engineering, we are five minutes out from the nebula. Report.”

Beya and her team were practically bouncing off the walls, moving from console to console, doing everything they could to get the repairs completed as soon as possible. Hearing the captain on the comm overhead, she tapped her badge to respond, “Beya here Captain, we are almost ready down here, standby.” She turned quickly around to Tyler who was working the console behind her, “Is that diagnostic complete?”

Tyler pressed a few commands on his console before replying, “Diagnostic complete, primary shield generators have been reset and are ready to come back online.”

“Excellent.” She gave him a quick smile, then tapped her badge, “Beya to Daniels, report.”

“Daniels here, sir. The severed lines have been replaced and are ready for main power activation.”

“Perfect! Excellent work everyone.” She pressed a few more commands, then smiled and tapped her badge once again, “Engineering to Bridge, shields are online and at maximum. Refractive shielding has also come back online and is operating within normal perimeters.”

“Great work Commander, compliments to the entire team.” He looked over at Ginell who was sitting beside him, “Now comes the hard part.”

“Especially since we’re down two officers, let’s hope we don’t lose anyone else.” She said, 

Kosev nodded, then refocused back to the main view screen where the Pioneer dropped out of warp in front of the Mutara class nebula, Saxue somewhere deep inside hiding. He stood from his chair and walked towards Kyth’s station, “Mr. Nakav, take us in.”

“Aye, captain.” He said, pressing a few commands and activating the ships impulse engines. The Pioneer moved forward at half impulse, and disappeared behind the cloud of the nebula. A small shake occurred just as the ship entered, prompting Kosev to look back at Savar for an update, “We have officially penetrated the nebula. Shields and sensors are at reduced capacity, but are still functional. However, we can expect the technology of the Dominion to be more outdated than ours, their shields and sensors may not function within the nebula.”

“I’ll take every advantage we can get. Alia, are we reading any Dominion contacts?” Thiren said, now changing his focus to the operations station that Alia took over from Jack. 

“No, sir. So far, no other additional contacts on sensors.” She paused while Kosev also asked about the planet, to which she replied, “No, sir. We also do not have the planet on our sensors, either.”

“Alright then. Kyth, let’s set up a search pattern, we need to find this planet as quickly as possible. Alia, keep scanning for Saxue and Dominion contacts, and do whatever you can to boost sensor efficiency to cut through the interference. The faster we complete this mission, the faster we can get the hell out of here. Put a sensor overlay on the far side of the view screen for reference.” He heard an ‘aye, captain’ from them both before he went back to sit down in his chair. 

Ginell stood and made her way to the rear of the bridge at the aft science station, doing what she could to assist with finding the planet as well. She didn’t know how long they would be at it, given the sheer size of the nebula, but one thing was for certain: she couldn’t wait for it to be done and over with. With Cassian still out of commission, no one knows what she went through in her previous life, not even the captain.  She vowed to herself that she would keep her self under control and her emotions in check for the duration of the mission, for the good of the ship and crew. 

Almost an hour went by, and still, they had found nothing. No Dominion ships, and no planet. Kosev sat in his chair, leaning on the right arm with his hand on his chin as he studied the display. Feeling anxious, he got up and went to Savar’s station and looked at the console with him, “Report.”

“Still no sign of the planet or any Dominion vessels.” Savar said calmly, working at his normal pace and keeping his eyes on the sensor readings. 

Kosev shook his head, “This just feels too easy, where is their attack wing? You would think that they would be patrolling the nebula around the planet, especially given how important this facility is to their entire operation.”

“I see two possibilities; either the intelligence provided by Fourth Fleet Command was incorrect in the numbers patrolling the area, or perhaps Dominion technology does not function properly in this nebula as we suspected. If  that is the case, it would explain why they are not inside, but it would also mean that whatever force is here would be concentrated around the planet.” Savar said, picking his head up and looking at the captain. 

“If they have all their ships tightly focused in one area, that’s going to present a whole new problem for us to overcome. All our intelligence to date has suggested they were patrolling the entire area. If they are all in orbit of the planet, we’ll need to devise some way of drawing them into the nebula or this mission is going to fail.”

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  • Unknown Author

    Wow, your story was truly captivating! Your writing style is beautiful and your characters felt so real. I was completely engrossed from beginning to end. Keep up the amazing work!

    June 6, 2023
  • Elements of Wrath of Khan are here but given a new update and adaptation with Dominion forces. I like how there's no easy answer - there's a real mystery here, full of foreboding! Further - I'm interested to see what they will do to draw them out - as it seems that may be what they have to do - lots of theatre stage work, maybe? Crafting some hide-and-seek action? Loving it. Looking forward to more!

    June 7, 2023
  • Real subs hunting subs vibes for this one. And the "this is too easy" vibe at the end really does come home to roost. Nothing is ever this easy without a downside or cost somewhere else. Really enjoying the vibes this crew are giving off of people competent in their jobs and a good fit that they can anticipate each other ie giving answers before questions are asked. I'm looking forward to seeing what's waiting for this boys and girls at Saxue.

    June 17, 2023