Posted by Ensign Jhalae Ynuchausti (Acting Chief Engineer) in Main Sim - Bridge
Posted by Lieutenant Commander Teller Graham (Chief Science Officer) in Main Sim - Bridge
Posted by Commander Daniel “DaVinci” Colter (Executive Officer) in Main Sim - Bridge
Posted by… suppressed (46) by the Post Ghost! 👻
A moment later, the cruiser connected, and the view screen filled with the face of a male Cardassian, potentially in his 40’s to 50’s. He had high cheekbones and a strong jawline, sharp nose and a widow’s peak hairline. “Greetings, Captain. I understand you want the data from the black box. Well, so do we. Unfortunately for you, we’re under no obligation to identify ourselves. It seems there’s been some rather unfortunate business in this area. We were looking into it when to our surprise we discovered a hidden outpost on one of the planets in this system. It seems the B’hari may have perished for stumbling onto this very situation. Surely the black box would contain all the necessary data to ascertain what happened. We wouldn’t want it to go to waste, would we?” As he finished, he almost purred with a slimy used car salesman smile.
“I thought the Cardassians were an endangered species…” Nicholas mumbled to himself as the man spoke. LtJG Foster thought maybe he’d want to barter for the black box, since surely even a Cardassian knew the odds were 50/50. Though, Nick felt it could be somewhat helpful if they teamed up with the Cardassian if they weren’t the culprit afterall.
They are about to be the thought ran through Dante’s mind before he had the chance to stop it, but outwardly his face didn’t change until he spoke.
“To be honest the data on the black box is only a secondary concern,” Dante shrugged. “The B’hari was destroyed by weapons fire matching your class of vessel and you already committed an act of war by firing on and destroying our probes. The next step you take that is not in co-operation with us will result in relations becoming much less friendly than they are right now. So lets take a moment and not do something you will regret, yes?” The last sentence from Dante matched the tone and smile that the Cardassian had used. “Can you expand more on this hidden outpost and why you suspect the B’hari perished because of it? I’d be interested in knowing more about this unfortunate business you speak of.”
Tapping out a command on his console, he sent a brief message to the Helm station, reading very simply, Picard Maneuver, ready. That would bring them face to face with the opposing vessel and hopefully, the warp field appearing so close would disrupt the Cardassian transporter beam if they attempted to beam the black box on board.
Jensen thought the Captain had forgotten who was piloting the ship. Thankfully, this maneuver was so well known a civilian could probably pull it off.
“The longer we’re out here, the lower our shields are going to get,” Foster reminded the CO through his panel. There was no telling how long they’d live if the shields were to fall.
Foster’s voice was a reminder of the dire situation they could potentially face. Jhalae glanced at the shield status display, witnessing the gradual but not yet significant decline in real-time. “I will optimize our shield systems, fine-tune their efficiency and explore any options that could bolster their strength. We can’t afford any weaknesses.” She said eying the view screen.
“What about shunting power from nonessentials to the shields?” Foster asked, not knowing if that was already done before he had come to the Bridge.
“Negative,” Graham responded. “This isn’t a power issue. It’s like a static charge on the body, but its growing. The shields won’t decrease the charge. In fact ll the shilds are doing are cycling the charge about the ship. We need more outside the box.”
((This isn’t an exactly more power = better result situation. The shields are experiencing a build-up of charged particles. In this case it’s high-energy particles that are rotating around the flow of gravitons at high speed. Some are, of course, flying back off into space. But this is like… static cling on an old CRT monitor. Or you could think of it like sand swirling around inside of a vacuum cleaner. Dropping the shields scatters/releases the particles. The hull itself is pretty good at keeping the particles and waves out. The other thing you can do is polarize the shields and get the charges to repel away from each other and/or the shields. You might get some discharges (like touching a doorknob and getting a small zap) but it’s nothing like getting hit by a phaser blast… yet. The more the charge builds the worse the ZAP will be, but there are multiple ways to prevent that. Or … it’s a flow of charged particles. An ionized cloud… a plasma. Which… there are things a ship’s crew could do with that.
Meanwhile, I need to consult with some folks. Also apologies for the delays folks.
Sam H. ))
Jhalae considered Foster’s suggestion and nodded, acknowledging its potential effectiveness. “Shunting power from nonessentials to the shields is a viable option. It could help to reinforce the shields and mitigate the buildup of charged particles. We haven’t tried it yet, but it’s worth a shot.”
She swiftly accessed the ship’s power distribution controls on her console and began rerouting power from non-critical systems. “I’m redirecting power from auxiliary systems like non-essential lighting, environmental controls in unoccupied areas, and low-priority subsystems. This should provide an additional energy boost to the shield generators.”
As Jhalae made the adjustments, she listened for the hum of the ship’s systems, to indicate the redistribution of power. A trick she’d been taught in the Academy. “While this temporary power redistribution buys us some time, we need a more sustainable approach,” Jhalae explained, her gaze fixed on the view screen. “I believe we should focus on polarizing the shields. If we can get the charged particles to repel each other and the shields themselves, it will help prevent the buildup from becoming too critical.”
She accessed the shield control interface, searching for the necessary commands to initiate the polarization process. “Polarization should create a repulsive force, forcing the charged particles away from the ship. It might result in some discharges, but it’s a preferable outcome compared to a catastrophic shield failure. We’ll need to monitor the shield integrity closely during the process.”
Jhalae’s fingers danced across the console, inputting the required commands. “We’ll need to maintain this state and monitor for any unforeseen complications.”
Nicholas groaned internally. He wasn’t sure having a showdown with an out of touch Cardassian was a good idea with their current situation, and Nick was thinking they’d have to rely on more tactical options if diplomacy didn’t budge in their direction.
Cmdr. Colter had been in his quarters when the Saracen’s red alert sounded. Having recently returned from the dead and reporting back as the ship’s XO/CIO, he had barely enough time to unpack. Never a dull moment, he thought, as he left for the Bridge.
Exiting the turbolift, the XO’s gravelly voice commanded, “Somebody give me a sitrep, the short version.”
His gladiator sized body moved gracefully across the bridge to take his seat to the captain’s right. Looking at the viewscreen, he added, “That’s a Cardassian Galor-class cruiser. Do we have an ID on it yet?”
Teller nodded at the XO as the man crossed the bridge in several short steps taking his seat next to the captain.
As he sat, Colter acknowledged the CSO’s presence. “Lt. Cmdr. Graham, it’s good to see you again.”
“Indeed Sir,” Teller replied to the greeting.
“We haven’t been able to establish a positive identification on the Cardassian Galor-class cruiser yet,” Jhalae replied nervously, her eyes fixed on his console. “I am attempting to decipher their transponder codes It’s possible they’re blocking us from reading them. I am not sure.”
Her attention still focused on the controls she continued to provide the XO with more information. “We’ve initiated temporary power redistribution to reinforce the shields, Commander. Additionally, I’m in the process of polarizing the shields to repel the charged particles and prevent critical buildup. We’re monitoring the shield integrity closely.”
“Continue to do so, ensign,” the XO replied.
He accessed the control panel on his chair and reviewed the message received from the Cardassian CO. Leaving the man’s image on his screen, he began to run a facial recognition program from his intel database. The Obsidian Order was good, but DaVinci had faith that his personal database could give him a match. With a match of the CO, he should then be able to get an ID on the ship.
“Mr. Graham, can you run a scan and try to find this ‘hidden outpost’ the Cardassian mentioned?”
The computer chewed over the frozen image of the Cardassian in front of them. After a few moments the computer returned a 65% likelihood that it was a Cardassian named Kejem. The number jumped to 80%, then 95%. He was older now than some of the scans in the database, but not by a lot. Just enough to make the computer second-guess. Intelligence on Kejem suggested that he had been an active member of the Obsidian Order, devious, cruel, and cunning. And absolutely given to avarice. He had served as a Gul at the time, but more recent records had associated the rank of Legate to his name, suggesting he had ranked up, making him a flag level officer.
“Yes Commander,” Teller replied, initiating long-range and short-range scans of the area, looking for what Colter requested. Instead of going through the normal parameters, however, Teller also added a biological parameter to the search criteria. In space, there was a lot of metal and ore. Someone clever enough to create a hideout using minimal power and indigenous materials of say an asteroid instead of metal for the structure. What they could not hide was water which was essential for life and nonexistent in space without having been artificially placed there.
The radiation provided a lot of interference. For a starship like the Saracen, sensor range was limited, though that limit was still well beyond visual range. It was much akin to swimming in thick, murky, muddied waters. There were no bio signatures inside the nebula besides the Saracen and the Galor-class, at least that showed up. It seemed that the facility mentioned wasn’t all that close. If they could detect it.
Foster assisted the CSO in the search since two pairs of eyes were better than one. They needed time to be on their side today, since their shielding wouldn’t hold forever.
“Welcome back to the big seats, Daniel.” Dante glanced at Colter and grinned for just a moment before turning to look at both Teller and Ynuchausti with a question before the Cardassian Captain would reply.
“So the particles are like a static clinging to our shields?” Dante bit his lip slightly as he thought, his mind going back to his childhood when he would electrcute his brother by touching him after rubbing his hand on carpet and the like.
“With static, you can discharge what you’ve built up by touching someone. How close would we need to be to that ship,” he pointed at the viewscreen and the Cardassian cruiser, “to give them a zap? Would that work and overload their systems? Shields, sensors, transporters? If we used the Picard move to get extra close to them so our shields were close enough, could that charge disable them without us needing to fire? I assume they are building up their own charge though, so what if we blipped in not quite as close to them and then reversed our shield polarity, sending an extra load of particles their way?”
Dante Knight, CO
“So we’re going to be a bug zapper?” Nicholas questioned somewhat curious to see how that would play out. “I’m sure they’d see that as offensive, even if they were pesty at the moment.” The COS laughed at his corny joke, but played the scenario out in his head. If the Cardassians were to get a shot off at the Saracen, that would lower the shields… but if they were to disable the Cardassians then they’d have leverage.
“Simplistic but possible,” Teller waggled his head slightly doing the calculations in his head. “If it doesn’t work out in dispelling the charge it could lead to an overload and take down our shields. Again just a possibility but better than waiting for something to happen.” Punching parameters into his console, Teller worked on the physics of what the Captain had suggested.
“Skipper, I’m not real keen on the idea of our shields going completely down in this soup, especially with that cruiser staring us in the eye. We’re going to end up with human sacrifice! Dogs and cats living together! Mass hysteria. . . .sir.”
((Okay, that made me laugh out loud. Great Ghostbusters reference.))
“Oh ye of little faith,” Teller said calmly. “Science won’t let us down but just have those phasers ready in case this maneuver takes a minute.” The easy banter was twofold between all the officers. First, it was to impart information. The second was to keep the freshly minted Ensigns from panicking and making a mistake. At times on the ship one had to fully accept their life was in another department’s hands. Camaraderie like this did help cement the bonds past rank and file.
Foster nodded and ensured the phasers were on standby, though he was hoping the CSO was joking that the maneuver could take that long. Nicholas steadied himself and waited for the next part.
“How about plan B?” Dante said looking between Colter and Teller, a slight smile on his face despite the danger of the Cardassian ship outside. “We blip right next to the black box, so our shields envelope it and they can’t get a transporter lock on it, then we reverse polarity on our shields and send an ionized particle storm in all directions. That kind of particle burst should disrupt their sensors yes? Theoretically giving us time to make sure our shields are solid. If we have the black box they may be more forthcoming with information, or shoot at us.” If their sensors were also able to find something biological that could point to this hidden base that the Cardassians alluded to, they would have plenty to work with. Of course, a planet side base wouldn’t have firepower that matched the main weapon array on a Galor Class cruiser, like they were facing and the like of which appeared to have destroyed the freighter.
((Okay that’s really inventive. Can’t wait to see how that plays out.))
The captain’s plan would work but it would need several stations working in conjuncture with split-second timing. “Working on the containment of the ions,” Teller replied. “Foster, you handle the shield and let me know when to release it,” he stated. This was going to be a classic chain-reaction series of events. It was best for everyone to be ready and to know when to react.
Jensen watched the conversation between the CO, CSO, and COS before turning his chair back to face the viewscreen. All up until now, he merely had to sit there and wait for the order to go. Truhart checked over his HUD once more and saw green across the board. The Helmsman heard Teller ask Foster to let him know when they’d need to release the shields, and felt a lump in his throat as he realized this was actually happening.
Nick nodded in affirmation and checked the tact systems one last time. Every second was going to count if they were going to pull this off, and they couldn’t afford anything to slow them down.
“Tactical is ready, Captain,” The COS said, as he waited for further orders. Foster couldn’t help but to think of how’d they be able to get the black box aboard without lowering the shields though.
“I’ve got an extra set of hands, Mr. Graham, if you need them. Or can I just sit back and watch you light up the sky like the 4th of July,” Colter asked, anxious for the show.
Outside, small blue-white flashes of light occasionally skittered across the shields. The ionized particles, jostled around by the shields, worked to etiehr repel each other or balance their charge. The latter caused the flashes as tiny flows of electrons formed channels between each cluster, each lasting only a few nanoseconds. Vacuum lightning. Normally, vacuum was a great insulator, with nothing for the electrons to move along or through. But with the shields creating those eddies and flows, along with the material of the nebula, it positively made the ship sparkle now and again.
The shields seemed to be doing fine with dissipation for now, easily handling the load, though they jittered up and down with the fluctuating energy, but only by a percent or two.
((As a note for the science team, it takes about a million volts to jump a meter of air. It takes much more to arc in vacuum, though the nebula helps this somewhat. Assuming that they want to gather up a lot of ionization and get it to arc,they’d have to be very very close, or have to get a LOT of it. And the latter is likely to do catastrophic damage, potentially to both ships, and would take serious damage. Also, my head hurts from crunching numbers and comparing them to the ship’s data. Like a 200 meter zap would be four or more times more than the shields could handle at max load. Probably closer to six. Closer requires less energy but it’s still ridiculous levels of energy.))
“Don’t kill us…don’t kill us....” LtJG Foster murmured to himself as nerves started to creep up his spine. The COS did not think he’d be playing chicken with the Cardassians so soon after his graduation from the Academy.
Science was not a high pressure job most of the time. It was usually wait and see but this time it was a wait and see if this works or we die moment. Running his calculations, Graham explained to the bridge the science as he crunched the numbers “Sir,” he looked at Colter making sure the XO knew he could use a hand, “we are going to need to get close to that ship to make this work. We need to balance containing the ionization and distance. Our shields are going to get overloaded if we just try to suck it up and we can’t contain that much ionization without catastrophic results. This means we get really really close, like shaving on a date night close so that we can get the ionization we need, put all the shielding ino the forward fields and then when we get enough we use the kinetic energy to push us back along with the power of our engines. I can tell you when we have enough ionization to create the arc, then you need to beam the black box over and then we move away. Ready,” Graham said.
“Lets forget trying to Zap them, and focus on the box instead.” Dante changed tack a third time. “We need that box, Helm I want to warp right in front of the black box and at that moment, Mr Teller I want you to drop shields and beam that box on board. While the shields are dropped, Ensign Ynuchausti, cycle the polarity and get them back up again as soon as we get the box on board. We’re a Battlecruiser, we’ll let our armor handle anything the Cardassians feel like throwing our way while the shields are down, if they dare.”
“Got it, skipper,” DaVinci replied as he slid into the hem position.
The XO knew the Saracen’s normal helmsman was good, but he trusted his own skills above all others. He entered the commands into the console as Dante had requested and re-routed transporter control to his console so that as soon as he warped in and the shields were down, he could grab the black box without having to waste time by communicating with the transporter room.
Jhalae quickly acknowledged the Knight’s orders with a crisp “Aye, sir!” and immediately got to work. she swiftly made her way to the main engineering console, where she prepared to carry out his assigned tasks. She cycled the ship’s shield polarity, ensuring that they would be ready to raise them again as soon as the box was safely on board.
“Ready on my mark,” Dante looked at Colter at the helm, and Graham, then nodded. “Do it.”
Colter hit the warp controls and a split second later a close-up of the black box appeared on the main viewscreen.
It happened so fast, the Saracen left an after-image for a split second, appearing in two places at once. At such a close range, the ship displaced into a completely different firing arc.
With a few deft keystrokes, she disengaged the shields, and the Battlecruiser was momentarily vulnerable, trusting in its sturdy armor to protect them from any potential Cardassian attack.
The Galor’s energy output spiked significantly higher than standard, feeding into the spiral-wave disruptors.
Simultaneously, she kept an eye on the transporter systems and focused on the coordinates for the black box’s location.
DaVinci immediately got a lock on the box and activated the transporter., ready to withdraw as soon as the box arrived. . . . .
OOC: Did a little rearranging with the posts to hopefully make sense and keep things in chronological order. –Terry
OOC: Looks good, thanks Terry
The black box registered as on board in transporter room one.
IC: “Mr Foster,” Dante added as he watched the image of the Cardassian ship on his monitor rather than what was happening with the black box, “if the Cardassian ship opens fire, you are cleared to engage. Focus fire on their weapon emitters and intercept any torpedo’s they may launch.”
Dante Knight, CO
“Shouldn’t be a hard task, Captain,” LtJG Foster replied, standing by with phasers and torpedoes. The COS wasn’t sure the Cardassians would dare to fire on a Federation Starship, but since the shields would be down until transport was complete, there wouldn’t be much of a ship left if they did fire on the Saracen.
Before the words could leave either officer’s mouth a blast of burnt orange energy passed exactly through the spot where the transponder had been, but missed the Saracen. Immediately after, followed a photon torpedo speeding through the murk toward the ship. It sped past, going from the wide as the cruiser, effectively, shot from the hip.
The Galor-class’s tactical officer was hurrying, in a hurry, rather than being sure of his shot.
Across the way, the Cardassian showed another spike incoming.
((Apologies for the delay all. i had checked a few times on posts, had nothing new.. then got sidetracked with other stuff outside of STF. Dave and Terry, you’re my heroes.
Also, further apologies. This was supposed to be an upgraded Galor-class, rather than Keldon, which I got mixed up in my sim notes. It’s fixed now though.))
“We’ve got the box, skipper,” DaVinci reported. Simultaneously, his hands flew over the helm controls to get the Saracen out of firing range.
“Ynuchausti, shields!!” The XO’s voice remained calm as he gave the order to the chief engineer.
The sensor bouys began flashing red, screaming digital warnings of increased tachyon emissions aft of the Saracen, along with dust and particle turbulence.
New contact bearing one four zero mark nine zero. (140,90) To port, to the left, and behind, approximately 7 o’clock position. The distortion quickly registered a concentration of Kelindide, Cardassian hull material. Another Cardassian ship was decloaking!
“Another Cardassian ship decloaking to the rear port, Captain!” Foster shouted as he was startled by the new alert on his console. The COS split the viewscreen and put up the now, two, Cardassian ships.
“Captain the sensors are picking up warning of tachyon emissions and particle turbulence aft of the ship,” Teller called out. “Might be new bogeys. Doubtful it is something to do with the nebula,”
Both reports were simultaneous, though Foster’ words carried more volume, cutting through the din. As the new contact resolved, sensors showed the new ship’s shields weren’t up yet, but they were powering up in a hurry, in a few seconds they would be up.
“Captain,” Teller called out, “sensors are confirming the ships and that they are bringing up their shields.” Graham was not tactics but he could read a sensor as well as the next officer.
“We’re not going to out-gun all of them, Captain!” Foster exclaimed while trying to tactically decide which ship they could potentially target first if things went south.
“Take a shot at that bogey to port, Foster, before she gets her shields up,” Colter ordered. “Take her out of the fight before she gets a chance to get into it.”
At the same time, Colter’s hands were working the helm. “Initiating evasive maneuvers, skipper. I’m always up for the challenge of taking on two birds, but we got what we came for.”
“Firing at their weapons array, Exec!” Nicholas called out, as he targeted the port ship with the Saracen’s phasers. The COS then hit the fire button twice more, hoping to send a bigger message. LtJG Foster ran a quick scan of that ship to assess the damage, if any.
Teller could not help with the defensive battle but could scan offensively to see if anyone else was showing up at the party or for any damage to the two ships shooting at the Saracen.
bumping to stay on the board :)
=^= Engineering to Ynuchausti=^= Charles called up from engineering with a basic status report, =^= Just so you are aware, I can confirm we haven’t suffered any major damage. We could stand to stay and fight longer. =^=
[Ensign Charles-Louis, Engineering]
“We haven’t taken any damage . . .yet. I’d like to keep it that way. We’re outnumbered, and we got what we came for,” Colter replied from the helm. He was prepared to jump to warp as was just waiting for the captain to say “go”.
Teller looked at his station noting the black box was now in the science labs. “Sir I am headed down to the labs to see if the price those ships paid was worth the cost by seeing what was on that damn box with your permission?” It wasn’t that Teller needed permission to go do his job but more so that the bridge crew knew he was no longer at that station.
Jhalae nodded in acknowledgment of Charles’ report. =^=Good work, Ensign Charles. Maintain readiness down there. We might need all systems at their best if things take a turn, =^= she replied, her voice a little shaky due to the tense situation.
As Colter voiced his opinion, Ynuchausti considered the options. He glanced at the viewscreen, she knew that their ship’s systems needed to be in peak condition for a swift escape.
=^=”Oui commandant! I will continue to provide what I can from here. =^= Charles answered. After a pause, he called back up to offer some words of encouragement for Ynuchausti =^= We are not yet facing defeat. Not this easily. =^=
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