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[DipInc] The Warbird Encounter [Tag Commander Loughty, Ensign Saoir]

Posted Feb. 21, 2024, 8:19 a.m. by Commander Oliver Loughty (Executive Officer) (J Ridgley)

Posted by Lieutenant Todd Nyman (Chief Counselor) in [DipInc] The Warbird Encounter [Tag Commander Loughty, Ensign Saoir]

Posted by Ensign Saoir (Transporter/Security) in [DipInc] The Warbird Encounter [Tag Commander Loughty, Ensign Saoir]

Posted by Lieutenant Todd Nyman (Chief Counselor) in [DipInc] The Warbird Encounter [Tag Commander Loughty, Ensign Saoir]
Posted by… suppressed (12) by the Post Ghost! 👻
[Snip]
As they flew further out, Nyman seemed fixated on the image of the Leviathan growing smaller and smaller in the distance. Suddenly aware of how small the ship was compared to everything else. It made him uneasy to think how this shuttle was even smaller. A small, confined space. With a small shiver, he tried to shake himself out of it, before attempting to get distracted by the word search again.

|Lt. Nyman,
Chief Counselor|

Oliver scrolled through the news articles, scanning the headlines for any updates of interest. As he skimmed through the various reports, one headline caught his eye: “OED V Colony Takes Steps Towards Peaceful Coexistence with the Vren.” Intrigued, he tapped on the article to read further.

The report detailed recent efforts by the OED V colony and the neighbouring Vren to resolve longstanding disputes and tensions. Through diplomatic negotiations and collaborative initiatives, both sides have made significant strides towards fostering understanding and cooperation. Measures such as joint resource management and cultural exchange programs were being implemented, signalling a positive shift towards peaceful coexistence.

Oliver felt a glimmer of hope as he read about these efforts, recognizing the importance of diplomacy and dialogue in resolving conflicts. He made a mental note to stay updated on the progress of these initiatives, hopeful that they would pave the way for a more harmonious relationship between the two neighbouring communities.

Commander Oliver Loughty
Executive Officer
USS Leviathan

After a few hours of warp fight, a small ping lit up the flight console. Nyman looked up at the sound, concerned.

“It’s an old warning buoey, sir,” Michaels explained,

“Old Neutral Zone border marker. Shouldn’t be anything to worry about.”

Lieutenant Nyman tried to get settled back into his puzzle, moving around in the seat in search of some comfort. Eventually, he just had to set it aside. Choosing instead to watch the forward displays while fidgeting with his fingers.

A few moments later, another ping. Then a proximity alert. And just as the Ensigns were figuring out what was going on, a Romulan warbird was decloaking off portside.

= Unidentified shuttlecraft, = they ordered, though the transmission was coming so rough and gravelly it was hard to make out,

= You are ordered to halt. Surrender your ship and prepare to be beamed aboard. =

|Lt. Nyman,
Chief Counselor|

Saoir’s heart was racing as the tension in the air thickened. The frills on the back of his neck began to stand, his instinct to sense danger. Romulans. The word alone sent a chill down his spine. He tried to maintain his composure, but his mind was racing with thoughts of what could go wrong. His hands clenched and unclenched in his lap, a nervous habit he couldn’t seem to shake.

Glancing around at the others, he noticed the expressions of concern and determination on their faces. The Ensigns were focused on their consoles, trying to assess the situation and come up with a plan. Commander Loughty seeemed calm and collected, a reassuring presence despite the looming threat.
As the Romulan warbird decloaked off portside, Saoir’s breath caught in his throat. The sight of the imposing vessel sent a shiver down his spine. He listened intently to the rough transmission, his mind racing as he tried to process the situation.
“Stay calm,” Saoir reminded himself, his voice steady in his mind. He knew they needed to tread carefully, but the fear gnawing at his insides threatened to overwhelm him.
With a deep breath, Saoir forced himself to focus. He had to trust in his expertise and that of his colleagues and follow their lead. As the Romulans continued to issue their orders, Saoir prepared himself for whatever might come next.

Ensign Saoir
(Transporter/Security)

Apologies for the confusion. Let’s adjust that:

Oliver stood now in the cramped confines of the shuttle’s cockpit, his hand resting on the console as he issued orders to the crew. “Raise shields, and send an encoded message to Starfleet on priority one channel,” he commanded, his voice steady despite the tension in the air. “Open a communication channel with the warbird.”

=^= Romulan warbird, this is Commander Loughty of the USS Leviathan,=^= he transmitted, his tone firm yet diplomatic. =^= Please state the nature of your demands.=^=

As the message was sent, Oliver glanced at the communications officer, awaiting confirmation of any response from Starfleet. “Any luck trying to raise Starfleet?” he inquired, his eyes flicking back to the viewscreen, ready for any sign of a reply from the Romulan vessel.

Commander Oliver Loughty
Executive Officer
USS Leviathan

Nyman noticed Saoir was making attempts to calm himself. And though his own panic was building, it would have been counter-productive to let the Ensign realize that.

“That’s good, breath, nice and slow,” he narrated for himself just as much the Ensign. He mustered a reassuring smile to cover over his own fear, “We’re going to be fine, okay? Commander Loughtly has the situation under control.”

“Something is causing interference with our communication frequencies,” Monroe reported, “It’s some kind of energy field, and it’s severely limiting our range. My guess is it’s effecting them too, it could be why we’re having trouble reading them clearly.”

= All vessels along this patrol route are to be subject to search = replied the warbird = Per orders from the Romulan Free State. You will surrender your vessel to be searched, your crew will be beamed aboard for further inspection. =

“They’re probably just sweeping the area for defectors, Commander.” Nyman called out, “I’ve… heard rumors that they’re doing that now.”

Of course, by ‘heard rumors’ he meant he had it on good authority that they were definitely doing that now. Nyman hoped that somehow sharing this information might calm the other’s nerves. But it did nothing to settle his own. It was possible, if slightly improbable, they were looking for Vendorain defectors as well other Romulans. The thought of being discovered terrified him. Even the thought of beaming aboard that ship terrified him. But most of all, the thought that Lieutenant Nyman would have to rely on the Commander to not turn him over, if it came to that point, terrified him.

The Romulans, too impatient to give them any more time to think it over, engaged their ship’s tractor beam and began to pull at the smaller vessel.

= Our Captain will be willing to discuss this further with you once you are beamed aboard, Commander =

|Lt. Nyman,
Chief Counselor
Also as: Warbird |

Oliver considered their position for a moment, so far the war bird had yet to show any force but he couldn’t understand why they would think a federation shuttle, a starfleet shuttle would be harbouring defectors. “Have they actives weapons?, Are we sure they’re who they’re saying they are?” He asked, indirectly ordering the officer to scan for weapons signatures and to identify the ship.

Commander Oliver Loughty
Executive Officer
USS Leviathan

“The ship appears to be of a newer Tal’Shiar design, sir. One they haven’t shared with us.”

The mention of the Tal’Shiar snapped up Nyman’s attention, who practically shot out of his seat to get a better view of the screen.

“They’ve got us in a tractor beam, sir. “ Monroe continued, “Other than that, there is no indication of hostility. In fact there weapons appear to be completely offline. “

Squinting at the image for a bit, “One, two, thr…” he muttered, before raising his just loud enough for Commander Loughly to hear, “It’s a Dev’ar class. A defense fighter… usually only planet-side or part of a squadron. They don’t get assigned patrol routes, not by themselves. Something’s off.”

|Lt. Nyman,
Chief Counselor|

“Looks like we don’t really have a choice, prepare yourselves to beam over to the Romulan ship, continue to send out a silent distress call on priority one channel to Starfleet and set it to send automatically even after were off the ship. I recommend leaving your belongings here. Something is not right, and we should be prepared. I am going to get changed” he said as a matter of fact. The Romulans had a rather militaristic society and if any respect can be got it may make this a little easier.

Oliver returned moments later now in his command uniform, “I want you all to swallow these, there trackers, they’ll pass through you in a few days but in the short term it gives us options.” He handed them out and swallowed his without any further word. “Send a message to the Romulan vessel that we are ready to beam over, then lower shields. “

Commander Oliver Loughty
Executive Officer
USS Leviathan

Saoir took the tracker and swallowed it with ease.

Nyman took one of the objects from Oliver and did as he was told. Perhaps the Commander had the same idea he did: for him to run away and hide the situation out as soon as possible. It wasn’t likely though, and the Lieutenant knew that.

Sensing the shuttle had dropped its shields, the Romulan ship made good on its promise to beam them aboard. The crew materialized in what appeared to be the brig of the ship, though it was difficult to tell in the dim glow of the emergency lights. A containment field, despite its unsteady flickering, kept all five officers confined to the four square meter cell they now found themselves in.

Outside the cell, a pair of doors opened. A group of four Romulan soldiers marched in, all in heavy armor and with disruptor rifles in hand. Each swiftly took their positions, surrounding the cell entrance, and stood at attention. Following behind them were two other officers. One taller Romulan woman with intense blood-green eyes. Her posture and presence almost made the Commander rank insignia on her uniform redundant. The other was a male officer, by appearance a Lieutenant, who had a very typical appearance. Only really noticeable because they were carrying some sort of scanning device.

Nyman shrunk back, and began weaving his way slowly toward the edge of the group. He was visibly shaken by the whole situation. If it wouldn’t have drawn so much attention he would have changed forms right then, hiding as an inconspicuous part of the cell’s construction.

The Romulan Commander paced over to the cell entrance, looking each Star Fleet officer over. As she noted Commander Loughly’s uniform, specifically the pips on his collar, a sinister smirk crept it’s way across her face.

“You must be Commander Loughty, ‘of the USS Leviathan’ And you…”

She glanced to the side at Nyman, who in response, cautiously stepped forward. He straightened up and managed a more stoic expression. For the sake of the others, it was his responsibility to at least project confidence.

“Lieutenant, that makes you second in command?”

He managed to give an affirmative nod without breaking character.

Her attention shifted to the Ensigns. With a penetrating gaze she scanned them over. Lingering a few seconds longer on Ensign Saoir, the only one in the group she had to actively look up toward.

Finally, she focused once again on Loughtly. Glaring directly at him, she began her questions,

“Now, what is your business in this region? Where is your destination?”

|Lt. Nyman,
Chief Counselor|

Oliver straightened his posture, a deliberate gesture aimed at projecting his own sense of command while also acknowledging the gravity of the situation. “Jolan Tru to you as well, Commander,” he greeted evenly, his tone measured yet respectful. “We were en route to the diplomatic summit on Algeron IV when we encountered your patrol. It appears we were unaware of this sector being under patrol, as it was not included in the previously agreed-upon Romulan or neutral zones.”

Pausing briefly, Oliver’s gaze shifted between the guards and the confines of the cell. “I must ask, is all of this truly necessary?” he inquired, his voice tinged with a hint of incredulity. “We have complied with your commands and present no threat. While we may not be allies, we are certainly not your enemies either. Surely there is room for diplomacy and understanding in this encounter.”

With a subtle yet firm tone, Oliver conveyed both his willingness to engage in a reasoned discourse and his underlying determination to seek a peaceful resolution to the situation at hand.

Commander Oliver Loughty
Executive Officer
USS Leviathan

Saoir stood beside his fellow officers, his heart pounding in his chest as he listened to Commander Loughty’s measured words. He couldn’t help but admire Loughty’s calm demeanor in the face of the Romulan Commander’s scrutiny.

As the Romulan Commander’s intense gaze lingered on Saoir, he squared his shoulders and met her gaze with as much resolve as he could muster. He knew that appearing weak or intimidated by the Romualans would only embolden them. He intentionally remained quiet for a few reasons, he didn’t want his voice to betray the show of bravery he was trying to portray, and thankfully the Romulan addressed the Commander and not him.

When Commander Loughty finished speaking, Saoir held his breath, waiting for the Romulan Commander’s response. The tension in the air was real, but as a security officer, although he probably couldn’t match their captors in hand-to-hand combat, he was ready to defend his fellow crew mates if given the command.

Ensign Saoir
(Transporter/Security)

“It is a necessary precaution, given our current mission.” she replied firmly, “Until we can confirm you are, in fact, who you say you are.”

She gave a nod to one of the officers, who promptly deactivated the field. There was a distinct rustle among the guards as the field came down.

“Lieutenant Sen’ton, if you would please…”

The male Romulan who accompanied her approached the group. He calmly stepped over the threshold to meet them in the cell. Looking between the officers with a far softer, yet still dignified expression.

Sen’ton then activated the device, a small hand-held scanner not much different from a tricorder in appearance.

“This will not injure you,” he explained, “However, you must remain still during the process.”

“You cooperation is vital to your release,” the Romulan Commander chimed in with another smile.

He began to move the probe of the device up and down and across each officers chest of each officer. He too paused for a bit in front of Ensign Saoir, giving a glance back to his Commander before proceeding.

Nyman had positioned himself last in the group. He stood straight, completely still. His eyes were almost glazed over as he retreated in himself. Repeating in his mind over and over all the readings that would be normal for humans, 65 BPM, blood pressure 90/60, 36.5 degrees Celsius, in a desperate attempt to manifest them. He had no idea about the technical limits of a Romulan medical scanner, just that it was hit or miss whether he was successful in fooling them.

(OOC: Planning on adding more during my lunch break)

|Lt. Nyman,
Chief Counselor|

He watched as the Romulan officer, Sen’ton, approached with the scanning device. As Sen’ton moved the scanner across his chest, Saoir focused on keeping his breathing steady and his muscles relaxed. He couldn’t risk any sudden movements. The Romulan’s pause in front of him didn’t go unnoticed, and Saoir held his breath for a moment, mentally urging himself to remain calm and made eye contact with the Romulan.
He glanced briefly at Commander Loughty, silently communicating his readiness to act if needed. His training as a security officer kicked in, and he mentally prepared himself for any potential confrontation. But outwardly, he maintained a neutral expression, giving nothing away.
When Sen’ton moved on to the next officer, Saoir released the breath he hadn’t realized he was holding. He couldn’t afford to let his guard down just yet, though. He stayed alert, ready to react at a moment’s notice. As Nyman underwent the scanning process, Saoir couldn’t help but feel anxiety for his fellow crewmate. He wished there was more he could do to help, but all he could do was wait and hope that their efforts to deceive the Romulans would be successful.
Once the scanning was complete, Saoir waited for further instructions from Commander Loughty or the Romulan Commander. He was prepared for whatever came next, whether it was their release or further interrogation.

Ensign Saoir
(Transporter/Security)

“Are you running a fever, Lieutenant?” Sen’ton asked calmly.

“It’s… it’s possible,” Nyman replied, clearing his throat as he was brought back from his own thoughts. It was a tricky balance to master, on the one hand it took focus to maintain the illusion. On the other, he had to make it appear effortless. Otherwise they would know they were being deceived.

The Romulan turned back to his Commander. Pushing a few buttons on the device as he took his previous spot next to the his Commander. Then presented the device to her for review. She furrowed her brow, reviewing the information. After a pause, she handed the device back to the Lieutenant and looked to Lougthly,

“Commander Lougthly,” she addressed, her tone conveying a little more respect than given previous,

“If you would please join me in my ready room, I believe you have earned a proper explanation. You may also bring your… security officer, if you would like. The others must remain here. I expect that your Lieutenant can keep them in line in your absence.”

|Lt. Nyman,
Chief Counselor|

Oliver maintained his composure, keeping his expression neutral despite the internal turmoil swirling within him. He didn’t trust the Romulan, not for a moment. There was something about their romulans demeanor that set off alarm bells in his mind, but he couldn’t afford to let that show.

“Of course, Commander,” Oliver responded smoothly, masking any hint of suspicion in his voice. “I’d be happy to join you in your ready room.” He glanced at Nyman, silently conveying his trust in him to handle the situation in his absence. Despite the unease gnawing at him, Oliver knew he had to maintain a facade of cooperation.

“Saoir, would you mind accompanying us?” he asked, turning to the security officer. “Your presence would be appreciated.” With a nod of assurance to Nyman, Oliver followed the Romulan commander towards the ready room, his mind racing with possibilities and potential dangers.

Commander Oliver Loughty
Executive Officer
USS Leviathan

Saoir first nodded in response, then said “Of course, Commander” Maintaining his vigilant stance as he fell into step behind the Commander. His senses were heightened, every fiber of his being attuned to the slightest hint of danger.
As they made their way to the Romulan ready room, Saoir swept the area with a quick, practiced gaze, assessing potential threats and scoping out any escape routes. His hands were clenched in a fist, though he did not realize it.

Ensign Saoir
(Transporter/Security)

The group was led off from the brig with two armed officers following behind. The Romulan Commander stood to the side of Loughtly, making it clear that she, personally, was watching. As they were ushered through the corridors, they saw the true state of the ship. The dim corridor was illuminated by the unsteady flickering of emergency lights. Loose panels hung from the walls connected only by their wiring. Atmospheric systems leaked plumes of unknown gasses into the corridors. The air smelt of burning plastic and ozone, and the halls echoed with the sounds of sparks and clanging.

This ship is in worse shape than It appeared externally, Oliver thought, a sense of apprehension creeping over him. We need to proceed cautiously.

The crew seemed sparse, though it was hard to get an exact number as they were darting around in the shadowy corridors. No doubt working on repairs. Though they all seemed in much better shape than the ship. From what they could see, not one of them even had so much as a bruise or scratch.

It’s odd, Oliver mused, noting the crew’s seemingly pristine condition amidst the ship’s evident disrepair. H_ow can they appear unscathed in such a damaged environment?_

One officer was observing a few others repair the relays behind panels that had been reduced to scorch marks. As the group walked by, he paused, and without hesitation approached the Romulan Commander.

What could they be repairing? Oliver wondered, his curiosity piqued. And why does it seem like they’re intentionally avoiding our gaze?

“Kerax,” he said, keeping up with the group as they continued to walk, “l- I’m sorry to interrupt but it’s urgent.”

This could be our chance to gather more information, Oliver thought, recognizing the officer’s interruption as an opportunity. We need to listen carefully.

“What is it, sub-commander?” she replied, with a strange emphasis on his rank.

“Right, Commander Kerax, sir…” the officer replied. After fidgeting with the datapad in his arm, he continued, “We are continuing to have difficulties with the power generation network and if we can’t manage to get it back online we’ll lose cloaking capabilities… among other things”

She paused, as did the guards behind the group. Kerax scowled at the officer, looking subtly back and forth between him and the others she was escorting.

“Is there still power in the ready room?” she said, baring her teeth on each syllable.

She’s clearly in command here, Oliver observed, noting the assertiveness in her voice. But there’s an underlying tension in the air.

“Yes.” squeaked the officer.

“Then we shall discuss the rest later.”

In response, the sub-commander just shrunk away, muttering, “Right, of course, yes sir.”

The group made their way to her ready room, as dark and damaged as the rest of the ship. It was a large, almost oval shaped room with a round table built into the middle, which if functioning normally could be used for holographic displays. Commander Kerax paced to the back of the room and sat opposite the door, viewing the Star Fleet officers from behind the table. Once the door closed, the guards each picked up one of the many chairs haphazardly thrown about the room, and set them upright at the table. They themselves took a position standing either side of the door, so it was implied this gesture was a curt invitation for the others to have a seat.

This setup feels like a deliberate display of authority, Oliver observed, taking note of the guards’ strategic positioning. We need to be cautious in our approach.

“So, Commander,” she started before giving another slight smirk, “I realize I never introduced myself. You may call me Commander Kerax. It might be appropriate to apologize for our initial over-abundance of caution. You see, our ship was sabotaged by a group of counterintelligence agents we were unknowingly transporting. We pursued them to this region as they tried to escape. The standing orders are to search every ship until we find them.”

|Lt. Nyman,
Chief Counselor
Also as: Commander Kerax|

Commander Kerax’s introduction and explanation provided some insight into their current predicament. Oliver couldn’t help but wonder about the truth behind her words. Were they truly pursuing saboteurs, or was there more to the story? Regardless, he knew they had to tread carefully, navigating the delicate balance between cooperation and suspicion. Oliver exchanged a brief glance with the others before taking his place. He knew that every word and action from this point forward could have far-reaching consequences.

It’s crucial to maintain composure, Oliver reminded himself, aware of the weight of their situation. We need to gather information while avoiding provocation.

“I must admit, Commander, you gave us quite the fright uncloaking as you did,” Oliver started, choosing his words carefully to maintain diplomacy. “Though I somewhat understand and appreciate your caution, we have nothing to hide, and you’re welcome to search our ship, though I suspect that’s already being done. I would have thought that if your saboteurs were smart enough, they would not linger in the area.”

Let’s see how she responds, Oliver thought, observing Kerax’s reaction for any hints of deception or evasion. We need to gauge her sincerity and discern any ulterior motives.

Commander Oliver Loughty
Executive Officer
USS Leviathan

Kerax leaned forward in her chair, observing Loughty closely. A smirk once again flickered across her face.

“That could be the case. However, our intelligence indicates that they came here, specifically, with the intention of rendezvous with a Federation vessel,” she explained. Her calm and measured tone indicated confidence, but not necessarily honesty.

She sat up straight once more and looked the Star Fleet Commander directly in the eyes,

“But you say that you are on your way to a ‘peace summit’? Forgive me Commander, but that seems to be and interesting coincidence.”

|Lt. Nyman,
Chief Counselor
Also as Commander Kerax|

Saoir observed Commander Kerax’s every move, his mind still fillex with suspicions. He couldn’t help but feel a sense of unease at the Romulan’s calm demeanor and calculated words. As Oliver exchanged pleasantries with her, Saoir remained silent, his attention focused on figuring out if the Romulan Commander was putting on a facade.
As he sat there in thought, his fingers subtly tapping against his thigh in a nervous rhythm.

As Kerax leaned forward, Saoir’s gaze sharpened, his instincts on high alert. The Romulan’s smirk did not go unnoticed, and Saoir couldn’t shake the feeling that there was more to her story than meets the eye.
“They could be toying with us,” Saoir thought, his jaw clenched. “But why? What do they want?”
As Kerax mentioned the supposed rendezvous with a Federation vessel, Saoir’s raised his eyebrows. He finally spoke, “Excuse me,” he said “Commander Kerax, what was the name of the Federation vessel you were scheduled to rendezvous with?”

Ensign Saoir
(Transporter/Security)

(OOC clarification : They suspect the rebels are planning the rendezvous, they don’t have anything scheduled yet. I still responded cause this gives me a launch point)

Kerax tilted her head slightly, seemingly surprised by the Ensign’s sudden question. There was a pause, a slight delay in retrieving the information.

“We have not been able to contact any specific ship to help us search for the rebels.” she explained, “And if we knew which vessel they were collaborating with, then we could confront them directly. Instead of stopping and searching shuttles.”

She brought her hand hands together in front of her, and contemplated for a moment. Then, she resumed,

“Perhaps you could assist us? After all, as you said, ‘we may not be allies, we are certainly not your enemies either’. Their ship is damaged, and by our calculations they only have a few days of life support. If you were in their situation, who in this region would you be likely to contact?”

|Lt. Nyman,
Chief Counselor
Also as Commander Kerax|

“Commander” Oliver began, a sense of reluctance evident in his tone as he prepared to address the inquiry. “Much as I understand your desire for information, I’m afraid our ship’s deployments in the area are classified. Just as you wouldn’t divulge such details to us, we must also uphold the same level of confidentiality. It’s a matter of protocol and security, I trust you can appreciate that,” he explained diplomatically. “Rest assured, though, that any distress call received by Starfleet vessels will prompt a swift and appropriate response. That’s a fundamental principle of our duty and commitment to aid those in need.”

Commander Oliver Loughty
Executive Officer
USS Leviathan


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