The Europa was cruising through space. At Black Rock, the Black Fleet’s HQ, the Europa had rotated some crew on and off and taken on new supplies and had one scientific and one general module installed by the grease monkeys on the station overseen by Chief Engineer Ducote. The orders for the Europa were delivered to them by a very officious individual, who identified himself as Fleet Command Aide Commander John Kingston. It seemed that the Commander had reached his ideal position in Star Fleet, the ability to sit behind a desk, dictate orders and deliver those orders to Fleet Captains, oh and no doubt push a fair bit of paper and red tape around while he was doing it.
In this case, the orders for Captain Dvorak and the USS Europa was to travel to the Copenhagen Expanse, a mostly unexplored region of the Alpha Quadrant, which seemed to have interesting spacial anomalies to map and phenomena to explore. They would engage in those activities while not forgetting the prime directive and other directives including responding appropriately to hails, calls for help and of course, avoiding the sentient nuts of Bi-Kini Atollia who were believed to be located somewhere in the expanse. The expanse, of course, was located between Federation space, and the space belonging to several of their neighbours, namely the Cardassians, Tzenkethi, Talarians and Tholians and while the Ferengi were a bit further affield, some of their more … adventurous merchants plied this expanse to get the goods to Oed V, Black Rock and elsewhere in the Black Fleet. But the powers decided that they would keep the expanse open to all and they would engage in scientific exploration in the area. There were, it was rumoured, outposts and stations and bases of the various powers to study the unusual properties of the expanse.
And so, this is where the crew of the Europa found themselves, cruising along in the expanse moving from potential anomaly to potential anomaly, mapping, measuring, scanning and hoping that something would come their way to give them a bit of excitement. Of course, there were some, scientists in the main who were excited to be mapping, measuring and scanning the unique features of the Copenhagen Expanse.
The issue for the Europa crew was that the Europa was relatively small, and the Copenhagen Expanse, even though it was only a small part of the Alpha quadrant, quite big by camparison. The doors to the bridge opened, and a cat, slender and black from her ears to the tip of her tail walked across the bridge, before sniffing at the captain’s chair, and curling up right in front of it, purring and cleaning herself.
The bridge’s normal sounds were interrupted by a priority one distress call from somewhere ahead of them within the expanse. That’s the kind of call that means drop everything and come as fast as possible, there may be something more interesting to do than to measure, map and scan stellar phenomena.
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