Posted by Lieutenant Ael Khev (Pilot, Red Squad Leader) in Side Sim: Holodeck (Open)
Posted by Ensign M’rahja Ko (Security) in Side Sim: Holodeck (Open)
Posted by Captain Sidney Parker (Commanding Officer) in Side Sim: Holodeck (Open)
Posted by… suppressed (2) by the Post Ghost! 👻
Lt. jg Grimhorn walked in. He had been secretly dropping in on others holodeck use. Even sometimes without authorization. He developed, as an engineer, a program that would allow him to enter and not be recorded as entering. It was not fool proof but unless someone was looking they would not detect it, Many times he waited to see what the program was and then just mimicked the holocharacters. You see it had never been detected but Grimhorn liked holoprograms with killing in them. He had a very quite fascination with serial killers. He had began to infiltrate others programs to kill holo characters in them. He had ran out of his own fantasies in his own holoprograms and now infiltrated others. However he was now finding this was losing its effect. After all they were just holoprograms.
OOC: Hows that for spicing it up a little.
Ael heard a scream in the distance. Someone called out “he’s dead! Someone killed him!” Ael arched an eyebrow, almost looking Vulcan. “That’s not a normal part of the program.
Grimhorn knew he had written the program well. If someone tried to cancel the holograms they would be forced to do it several times before it would actually work. By this time he found his way out. He was working on a way to stick the program and force them to stay in the holoprogram and then he could have more fun. In fact he had just introduced that into the code and made some small mechanical mods but he was not sure it would work. To be safe he was milling around other holo characters.
Grimhorn the Knife
M’rahja’s ears flicked forward at the cry. She jumped from the table and was moving before her mind could remind her that this was a simulation. She ran out into the street, searching for the source of the cry, the body, or the fleeing attacker. Whichever she saw first.
Grimhorn was so tempted to knife another of the simulations but saw the Catian move into the area. He was methodical and smart. The game was afoot and he wanted to see how far he could take it before it was a danger to himself.
Grimhorn the Knife
Ael searched with M’rahja. He didn’t like this at all, and more and more he wondered if this was just a glitch or someone’s doing. If it was someone’s doing they would answer to him before too long. He looked down an alley and saw a crowd around a collapsed figure. “I supposed that’s the victim.”
Lt. Grimhorn was no ones fool. In fact he had an above average IQ. He moved every so slowly away from the crowd but remained in its periphery. He had watched sims a lot and knew their movements within the parameters of simulated characters. Moreover he knew the programming for this one program. He carefully remained within this ones parameters. He only looked at Khev no more or less than a sim would. However he took in the reckless swagger and intelligent eyes of the man. He knew him as a pilot and they were always the best. Reckless, brave, intelligent and predators. A real challenge.
“Is. . .this apart of the program?” M’rahja questioned as she pushed aside a loitering onlookers, and shoved another to reach the victim. People lingered near the body, wearing a range of expression from shock to horror. Actors following their lines, but it was all off. Like they were forced to read lines from a new script. None of them seemed to know what to do next so they held position.
“It is not.” Ael replied, thinking.
M’rahja crouched beside the body. It was a man, face down, the back of his tunic soaked with green blood. She pushed the tunic up to reveal knife wounds. Her ears flicked back. She looked to Ael, “This is no programing glitch.” A glitch could manifest in many ways, but this was no program malfunction. Glitches do not randomly kill sims with stab wounds.
OOC: BTW I am not trying to hijack the side sim. If you like this let me know. If not that is ok as well. I just thought I would join and create something different and unexpected.
OOC: I think it’s a fun twist.
IC: Ael’s eyes drifted around the space and through the crowd. No one immediately stood out, except one didn’t immediately appear to be a Romulan. Ael knelt down next to M’raha and pointed this person out to her.
Grimhorn had practiced his calm and adherence to the movements and behaviors of the holodeck sims perfectly. However even now he used his inner control. He imagined crossing the barrier and attacking either of the two officers. He knew he had not disabled all the protections in the holoprogram perfectly. Any weapon he might use may not function except his bare hands and he was not that type of killer.
Grimhorn moved away from the crowd slightly following a sim family that had withdrawn from the sight of the dead person with their children. Grimhorn knew the psychiatric definition of his “condition” but did not prescribe to it. He honestly felt he was the normal one and everyone else were just denying their true natures. In the end he saw them all as non beings. Playthings. He was excellent at portraying behaviors like everyone else and could even trick a nueroscanner but he truly did not feel any of those things others claimed to feel.
M’rahja followed the line of Ael’s finger and caught a fleeting glimpse of the side of the man’s face before it vanished beyond the crowd of onlookers. Who was that? It seemed he lacked the pointed ears of the simulated people around them. There was no way a non-Romulan would appear in a simulation of their homeworld. M’rahja’s lip curled into a snarl, putting heir sharp teeth on display, “Computer, end program.”
Nothing. The program did not freeze. Nor did the simulated people or buildings gently vanish like smoke. The black room of the holodeck with its yellow lines did not appear. The program continued on as though she never spoke. Her snarl shifted to shock, and she looked to Ael, eyes wide. “Computer, end program!” Once again nothing happened. At once every report and lesson about malfunctioning holodecks popped into her head. There were dozens of recorded events where holodeck participants became trapped or otherwise unable to leave their programs. Even records of simulations gaining sentience!
M’rahja stood, her gaze locked at the last point she saw that man, “We need to find whoever that was,” She said, “They’re likely the key to this.”
Ael rose. “Agreed.” His brow furrowed. He moved off into the crowd and followed after Grimhorn, trying to track and catch him.
Grimhorn was pleased with himself as he was alerted that the program was trying to be closed but would not. However now he had moved from the hunter to the hunted. As noted Grimhorn was smart, way above normal intelligence, so this did immediately worry him. he moved into a small alleyway and then into a shop side entrance where several people were. He brought up his hood on his cloak as he angled for a non descript view of the window and street. He had the distinct advantage of studying this holo environment many times. He knew he had the front door, a side door and a back one to escape to if they saw him.
Something else formed in his mind as well. How easily he could shift this back to being the hunter. This time though it would be real flesh and blood.
At the place where they saw their target, M’rahja motioned for Ael to stop. She stood where their man stood, then closed her eyes and opened her mouth. M’rahja made a series of quick inhales, forcing the air towards the roof of her mouth and the vomeronasal organ located there. Within seconds dozens of scents were caught. One after another, she dismissed the exotic smells of a foreign planet and steadily honed in towards one scent in particular. Ships, being sterile atmospheres, carried a distinct scent separate from any planet atmosphere she’s ever known. People, who spent most of their times aboard ships, carried that scent with them. All of this took place within the span of a minute and a half.
“I have a scent.” M’rahja told Ael. “They went this way.” She lead the way, slowly but steadily following the path of their mysterious target.
OOC: We can play this two ways. A one off adventure with the outcome decided in this thread. The second is that its ongoing and this is just one time in a series where they hunt Grimhorn in this environment and possibly in the real world as well. You tell me which you prefer.
ooc: I’m kinda digging option two, for all those sweet and juicy plots
OOC: Option two works for me as well.
Damn thought Grimhorn. A Catian. He had not thought about it. A very big mistake on his part. She could track him by scent. Even with all the holodeck tech at work a Catian would figure out the difference from a real person in a holoprogram and the sims. He had to leave but he could not resist one last move. He pulled out the minipadd and made sure the algorithm that disguised his real face was fully functional still. He then turned, produced a knife from under his cloak and slit a woman’s throat near him. He then quickly executed the last program that made the door to the rear of the building appear for what it was, the holoexit. He discarded his cloak and tunic and pants on the way out as it opened and he exited. He was now wearing casual federation wear underneath. The discarded clothes slowly disintegrated. He had made sure that they had been made of a chemical composition that would react with the small vile of reactive material he had in his pocket.
He would remember later to wipe from the surveillance a few seconds of his exit so that they would see nothing except him as one of many people in the hallway near that zone at that time. He delighted the idea of the two of them rushing in to find another victim and the program released if they wanted to exit. what would they report? A sim serial killer. Hummm SSK. It had a ring.
The scent trail led them towards a shop tucked down a side-alley. The stranger’s smell was stronger here, and M’rahja increased their pace, confidently leading the way into the shop. The scent firmly ingrained into her senses and distinct against the replicated smells of the program. Then the acidic smell of blood cut through the trail and stopped her short. Another victim, a female Romulan bleeding profusely from the neck. M’rahja did not drop beside the woman, but kept going towards the chemical smells of disintegrating pile of sludge. Ugh. She held her nose and closed her mouth, that chemical smell burned her sensitive olfactory senses. Damn.
M’rahja returned to the second victim. She wasn’t real. M’rahja told herself. But she could have been. All of this could have been real. “There’s no way to track them beyond this room.” Though the truth, it hurt to admit. “Ship air is constantly recycled and too well ventilated to allow scent trails.” There had to be something else. Some other clue.
Ael considered for a moment. “This isn’t a part of the program. Either the program has become flawed and veered off course, or a non-holographic entity has interceded.” He paused. “As far as I know, I’m the only Romulan on this ship. Possibly in Starfleet. If it’s a living person, they likely don’t look quite like the rest of the crowd.” He began scanning the crowd area for people who didn’t appear to be Romulan
“I agree with the last one.” M’rahja said, also scanning the crowd in case there was another infiltrator. She didn’t think so or she might have smelled them too. The person they saw was long-gone if the chemically burned clothes were anything to go by. “Whoever they were. . . they got away with this.” On a hunch, M’rahja spoke into the room, “Computer, end program.” The building and people faded away and they were within the holodeck room. Just M’rahja and Ael. She turned to Ael, carefully considering everything that happened. “We should report this.” She said at length.
“I suppose so. Take it to Security.” Ael wasn’t exactly thrilled with the idea of handing it off, but it was probably wise. He wondered if this was a sign he should leave Romulus in the past, where it belonged. He’d figure that out eventually. He headed for the door and towards the security offices.
M’rahja nodded, “I’ll make the report,” She paused, anger and frustration apparent upon her face. Angry that this killer got away. Angry that they were to late. And angry for Ael. This program was a simulation of a home he could never return to and this sicko ruined it with pointless deaths. The tip of her tail thrashed back and forth, then at length she said, “I’m sorry this happened. I’m sorry that someone would do this to your program. We’ll find who did this.”
“It was probably time to let go anyway… long overdue. But we can’t have someone running around doing this kind of thing.” Ael seemed a little bit distant, distracted. “I suppose it doesn’t hurt to have someone in security around when this kind of thing happens.”
Obviously Grimhorn knew who the other officers were by the program data. He had a deliciously disturbing urge to move beyond the confine of the holodeck with his fascination. He decided that both of these officers would interesting to hunt.
If Grimhorn was being reflective of his own self he might ask himself when did his controls, one he had used his whole life to keep the secret desires under control had went. However he had went past that point now. He decided it was time to move on and up. After all with his IQ no one was going to catch him. He had always felt the sky was his limit but superiors, teachers and even his own parents had said he was socially unable to make strong connections with people. Obviously as an engineer he did not always have too. He could fake it the other times.
Time to let go. She wished she knew what to say. That she had the right words to soothe and comfort. A home was a strange and powerful place. Physically, a home may remain the same, or be gone entirely, or show signs of age, or be altered in any number of ways. But the home that exists within memory, that is a place you could never return. The home of one’s childhood or youth, where all memories good and bad were made, could only exist within the mind. M’rahja wished she knew the words to express this, to show empathy and understanding.
But she could not. But maybe instead she can find the one responsible. “Oh, is that all we’re good for?” M’rahja said, trying to keep her tone light. She took one last look at the room around them, before calling for the holodeck doors. “If you’re ready to leave, then I’m ready too.”
“Yeah, no point sticking around. I need a drink. You’re welcome to come along, if you like.” Ael headed for the door. His mind was weighed down, and that needed to be remedied.
“Sure. A drink sounds good.” She followed Ael out, but couldn’t help but feel on guard. Their killer was on the ship somewhere, and M’rahja couldn’t help but fell a little wary around each person they passed.
© 1991-2021 STF. Terms of Service