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Ghost Ship (Time Zone 1)

Posted on 07 Aug 2018 @ 10:22pm by Lieutenant Camila Di Pasquale & Lieutenant Commander Arjin Djinx & Lieutenant Joey Geisler & Lieutenant Danyl Adan & Lieutenant JG Ian Beckett & Story Teller
Edited on on 07 Aug 2018 @ 10:23pm

Mission: Fractured
Location: USS Black Hawk
Timeline: MD 1 || 0930 hours (2356)

===[Conference Room]===

The lights flickered briefly, allowing Joey to see her surroundings before all that offered any kind of light was the eerie blue glow coming from outside. She was still crouched on the floor, but... what the hell was going on? The conference room was empty except for her and Commander Djinx. She didn't notice any of them leave, but what was even stranger was the fact that her husband was gone. She'd just been kneeling next to him with Chief Stephens saying he'd help her get him to sickbay, but now...

Confusion and panic were beginning to set in. Was she the one who cracked her head on the floor and was rendered unconscious, allowing everyone but the Commander the chance to leave? Was he told to stay behind to treat her injuries since he was the closet thing they had to medical officer when things went sideways? She didn't know, but one thing she did know was that she didn't feel any pain anywhere, so that kind of put a damper on that idea.

Joey rose to her feet and looked in the general direction the Trill man was in. "Commander Djinx, did you see anyone leave here?" she asked, feeling her way around the room. The PADDs were still scattered around the room, and she found herself slipping on one, but managed to catch herself on the table before she could fall. This seemed like a scene out of a horror movie, but this wasn't a movie. This was real life. "And do you have any idea what happened?"

Arjin had just been getting back at his feet a moment before. He was still heaving a bit on his feet, holding a chair for stability when Lieutenant Geisler got up and asked him what was going on. He had not even realised what was wrong. He had been unconcious, so no he had not seen anyone leave. And why where both he and the Captain's wife the only ones here. Both unconcious with no one attending on them.

"I don't know. ", was all he could offer. "Last thing I remember is having a meeting and wanting to go back to duty."

"Come out to the bridge when you're ready. I think we'll find the others out there," she said, nodding her head as she turned and made her way to the bridge.

"I will look around here and join you there later.", he replied.


===[Bridge]===

Camila headed to go to the bridge when she realized that the power wasn't coming back on and the turbolfts weren't operational, but at least she had her memories. "Computer, initiate secondary systems and emergency protocols."

There was no immediate reply as the power outage had extended to the computer. However, a trickle of emergency power began to flow, causing a red glow to softly illuminate the bridge.

Still not having any clue what happened or closer to getting any answeers, Joey made her way out of the conference room and stepped onto the bridge. With the red glow, she was able to spot a familiar face standing at her station. Despite what happened between them a couple days ago, the Intelligence Chief didn't hesitate to close the distance between herself and Camila, throwing her arms around the other woman. "You're okay! I'm so glad you're okay!" she said, pulling back slightly to give her friend a once over to be absolutely sure. "Did Harvey and Chief Stephens come through this way? Go into the Ready Room perhaps?"

Camila looked over her shoulder and saw her tall friend. "I was the first one out," she said as she looked back at the blank console. "I'm trying to get power back on here. So far, it's only emergency lighting. Is the Captain okay?"

Joey blinked. "What do you mean is he okay? He's in his Ready Room, right? With Chief Stephens?" she asked as panic began to rise inside of her. Quickly, she let go of Camila and immediately rushed over to the door that led to the ready room not wasting any time tearing the panel off to get to the manual release. She pulled it, not even waiting for the doors to open completely before she rushed inside.

Empty.

Not a soul inside.

"No! No! No! No!" Joey shouted, rushing back out onto the bridge. Panic was now in full swing, and there wasn't much that was going to calm her down. "He's not in there, and he's not in the conference room! They were just there! All of them! The lights flickered for a second, and it was just me and Commander Djinx!" Her heart was racing, beating inside her chest like a war drum. Harvey was somewhere on the ship, and he was wounded... maybe even worse. Bile rose in her throat, but she fought it back.

The door leading onto the bridge opened and in walked a young man who seemed quite happy to see the two women on the bridge. "I... I didn't think I'd see anyone else here. I was just in Administration, and there was hardly a soul around. Do either of you know what's going on?"

Joey's eyes flew to the poor unfortunate soul that just made his presence known. She flew toward him, grabbing the front of his uniform and pressed him back against the bulkhead. "The Captain is somewhere on this ship. He's injured. I want you to find him. Yesterday. If you don't, I will wear you like a shoe that's just come into fashion," she said in a voice that resonated deadly calm.

The young man's eyes widened, but he managed to nod his head. "Y... yes, ma'am," he said, taking off the way he came the moment she let him go.

"Joey, I highly doubt that he'll know more than we do. The Captain was in the conference room we just came out of," Camila said as she went back to the room and looked inside. "Well...he was. I need to get these shields back up and check the weapons."

She went back to her station and started trying to get anything out of the computer. "Computer, where is Captain Geisler?" she asked it.

"He was just in there, but then he wasn't. I was kneeling right next to him," Joey said, trying to make sense of it all. "Chief Stephens and I were going to get him medical attention, but then they weren't there anymore. No one was but me and Commander Djinx. I just said that." Panic was still in full swing, but she needed to try to be rational.

By design, machines were designed to be neutral or otherwise unable inflect bias or emotion. Sadly, these functions did not matter as the computer simply did not respond thanks to the lack of power.

"We have no power. There has to be power for the computer to work," the Intel Chief stated, resisting the urge to pinch the bridge of her nose. "We need to get the power on, which means we need to hunt down people from Engineering." The last thing Joey wanted to do was climb around like a monkey through Jeffries tubes to get through other decks. Especially with spidermunks on the loose. Of course, she didn't know they'd already been captured and were contained now. "Critters love me, Camila. For some reason, they're able to seek me out like little heat seeking missiles." She gave a fill body shudder at the thought, but kept telling herself this was to find her husband. He was on the ship somewhere, and he needed medical attention.

"There's no critters around now, Joey," Camila said. "Those spider rodent things were all captured from what Ensign Mitchell told me. Let's go find out who all is on this deck."

How did she not know this? Joey felt like she could breathe a little easier knowing they were gone. Yes, they were still on the ship, but now they were confined. "There isn't much to this deck. We've got the conference room, ready room and bridge. Commander Djinx is the only one in the lounge, we're the only ones on the bridge, and I've established that the ready room is empty. Short of finding anyone in the corridor before we crawl into the Jeffries tube, I'd say we're it," she pointed out.

"You go first this time," Camila told her and pointed at the access hatch by the turbolift.

"Unless you have coffee, I won't be getting sick on you," the taller woman promised, but made her way off of the bridge. Joey wasn't thinking as clearly as she usually would, and while there were so many things rolling through her mind at once, finding her husband was front and center. She wanted to know he was okay. She wanted to know he was alive. It was that very reason that she forgot to alert Djinx of their departure. "We'll head down to Engineering and start from there."

Camila went to the conference room doorway. "Commander Djinx, myself and Lieutenant Geisler are heading down to Engineering to see if we can get some power. The weapons locker is at the back of the bridge."

Having been trying to make sense of things from inside the conference room, Arjin was glad to at least see a third person was still around when Lieutenant Di Pasquale showed up. He nodded. "I'll better come with you also. It is better not to split up as long as we don't know what we are facing."

With a nod, the Security Chief went to the locker and opened it manually, then retrieved two wrist lamps, two phasers and holsters and left one in for the Science Chief, two more power cells and headed over to where Joey was. "Here," she offered Joey one of the holstered phasers and extra cell with the wrist light. "I hope we don't need them, but in case we do.

Joey, who was wearing the Intelligence version of Security's tactical belt, added the new devices to it and made sure her phaser was ready to go in the event it was needed. For a very brief moment, she wondered if Stephens had taken Harvey... brought him somewhere to hide out for who knew what. That line of thinking was horrible, but she didn't know the Chief that well. They were somewhere on the ship, and Joey planned to find them. "We'll have them if we need them. Let's go." With that, she made her way toward the nearest hatch that led into the Jeffries tubes and climbed inside. It was time to begin their journey to Engineering.

Then, a thought hit her.

Harvey was likely there trying to help get power restored to the ship, and Stephens was likely there with him. As the Chief of Operations, he likely knew his way around that kind of stuff. Man, now she felt guilty for her line of thinking and planned to apologize to the man even if he didn't know what it was for.

Camila climbed in behind Joey and shined a light down the shaft. "Well, no one is in here, but now to find out where everyone is."

While Joey wanted to know where everyone else was, her biggest concern presently was tracking down her husband. He was hurt somewhere, and she just couldn't get that image out of her head. Where the hell was he? "We'll get it figured out, but first, the power," she said, hoping the young man she'd tasked with finding Harvey and Stephens came back with some good news. Maybe when there was time, she'd check sickbay to see if they'd gotten there somehow, but wouldn't she have seen them leave?

"Do you have your gloves with you, Joey?" Camila asked as she started to climb down after the Intel Chief.

"Yes, why?" the taller woman asked as she moved down the ladder. This wasn't something she liked doing, but at least there weren't any creatures that would somehow find their way to her.

"Put them on and slide down the ladders like every cadet at the Academy did despite being yelled at a hundred times," Camila suggested. "We can cover the decks faster."

Joey stopped for a moment, and though Camila couldn't see it, she looked at the Security Chief as if her neck just sprouted a second body in the form of a Nausicaan can can dancing. "Camila... have you not looked at me lately. In case you haven't noticed, I've got my own gravitational pull. The last thing I need is to slide down this thing and bump my belly on the rungs, thus resulting in some kind of damage to my children," she said before she started moving again. "However, if you want to get down faster, I'll move aside and you can slide your way down."

Maybe it was the blue stuff from the night before or maybe it was her own recklessness kicking in, Camila thought about it for a moment. "No," she decided. "I better not. Sorry. I wasn't thinking clearly. Sorry, Joey."

"No, no, you don't have to be sorry, Camila. We're stressed, and not thinking clearly comes with that territory," she said, continuing to move. "People don't just disappear. You know... if this is Harvey's way of paying me back for the prank I pulled on him a couple days ago, I'm quite literally going to kick him smack in the ass." Joey was now beginning to wonder if her husband was pulling off some sort of elaborate prank now, and had managed to get the entire crew in on it somehow. He was the Captain after all, and did have that kind of pull.

"You pulled a prank on him?" the Security Chief asked after shining the light down the enclosed area again.

"It wasn't the first time, but yes. Over a period of time, I replicated Kermit the Frog wrapping paper as to not raise any kind of suspicion, then wrapped his entire ready room with it. Everything," Joey replied, thankful for the distraction as they made their way down. "When you get the chance to go in there, do so. It's still up on the walls. I think everything else has been unwrapped already."

Camila gave a laugh. "That had to be something to see," she said. "No wonder we had the meeting in the conference room instead." She paused for a moment. "Look, Joey. I feel bad about how our lunch ended the other day, but I have issues to work out and counseling just isn't doing it for me. They can't get the screams and scenes of destruction out of my mind. Starfleet fighting Starfleet and nothing was really resolved other than we stopped fighting each other. It nags at me all the time and I can't do a thing about it."

Joey listened as Camila spoke, leading them down deck by deck. Main Engineering was their destination, and when she flicked on her palm light and shined it around, she saw they were nearly to their destination. "I feel bad, too, and I'm truly sorry. When this is all over, you and I are going to sit down and have a little heart to heart. We both went through some things we need to get off of our chests, and I think we'll be able to help one another heal," she said, still moving at a fairly swift pace without it being dangerous for her or the others. When she got to deck nineteen, she took a breath and braced herself for what they might see on the other side.

"If we get out of this, then we can talk," Camila said.

Arjin had been keeing a bit of a distance to the two women, securing the back as he called it. Until he catched up with them at the hatch. "Who will go in first?", he asked.

===[Engineering]===

"Considering our current pecking order, that will be me," the Intel Chief said, as she maneuvered herself on the ladder so she'd be safe while she worked to get the hatch open. After a few moments, and putting a little bit of oomph on it, Joey got the hatch open. Just like the bridge, deck nineteen has the red lighting illuminating the corridor. "We really are in hell."

Carefully, she poked her head out and looked in both directions, but there wasn't a soul around. A frown formed on her face as she looked back to the others. "The corridor is deserted. I'm going in," Joey told them, pulling herself out onto the deck. When she was clear, the taller woman stood up and moved aside so the others could follow her out. There was something that just wasn't sitting well with her right now, but she didn't quite know what that was.

Camila followed her down and came out on the Engineering deck to shine her light around. "Hello?!" she called out in a loud voice. "Is anyone here?"

Arjin arrived last, looking around and also seeing no one. "Maybe in main engineering we will have more luck.", he proposed.


===[Transporter Room One]===

Ian came to and picked himself up from the floor. "That wasn't the greatest feeling," he said aloud. He went to the transporter console and inspected it. A few lights were flickering here and there and a few others were on, but the majority of them were dark. He then removed a panel from the side and switched a few isolinear chips. He got up to his knees and tapped a series of commands into the console. When nothing happened, he went back to the chips. Only this time, he removed a relay in order to reroute console power through a transducer. Ian stood and entered the series of commands again. A few more of the lights flickered on. The Transporter Chief smiled and tried to bring the primary buffers online first. When nothing happened, he tapped his combadge. "Lieutenant Beckett to Bridge, main transporter is offline. I'm working on it now." Ian knelt down and began tinkering with the insides again.

Ian came up a few minutes later and realized that no one had answered his comm. He tried again but noticed that it didn't even make it's 'malfunction chirp' when he tapped. He'd been too consumed with fixing the transporter that he'd been working on the other day to notice the first time. Shaking his head, he grabbed some of the isolinear chips and relays from the console stand and put them in his pockets along with the few basic tools he kept in the transporter room. He went to jury rig the door, as it was most likely not working either, and find out what was going on. Once in the corridor, he started searching the deck but found nothing. That last place he wanted to be was inside of Jeffries Tube. But as fate would have it, that was only option for getting to the other decks. So in he went.


===[Engineering Deck]===

Joey cautiously made her way toward Main Engineering with her hand resting against the phaser at her hip. She didn't want to take any chances at something... unsavory... jumping out at her. She'd been through that before with Jackson some time back, and that one time was more than enough for her. The palm light illuminated the way as she crept forward slowly. "Hello? Anyone down here?"

Only silence was the answer to the question asked. "This is starting to get a bit creepy.", Arjin muttered.

"Creepy or not, we have to find out why the power is offline and get it back on," Camila said as she headed for main Engineering, her phaser leading the way as she shined the light in a sweeping motion.

From up ahead, Joey came to a stop to wait for the others to catch up to her. "We also need to find out if there's anyone else here, or if it's just the three of us," she said, shining her light toward the doors that would take them into Engineering.

Camila came up beside of Joey and checked the doors. "I'm really starting to hate automatic doors when the power's off," she said as she knelt down and pulled the manual release hatch off. She reached inside of it and yanked the release and stood up. "Now to force it open. Can you give me and Lieutenant Geisler a hand, Commander?" she asked Djinx as she went to one side of the door and began to slide it back.

Arjin put his phaser back into the holster at his side and stepped over towards the other side of the door panel.
Using his full strength, he felt the door sligthly give way step by step.

As a crack appeared in the door, two sets of fingers slipped through the cracks on the other side and helped to push the doors apart.

The Security Chief jumped back when the fingers appeared and she quickly recovered and began to tug at the doors again. "Push!"

Being surprised, his first impulse was to hit the fingers hard. But then again they were looking for other crew. The most probable outcome would be that they had found someone. Doubling his effort, Arjin pushed with all he had.

The fourth pair of hands did all he could to help until finally the doors were wide enough to let people pass through. The owner of the hands, a Kelpian, blinked at the new arrivals. "None of you are engineers," he observed, recognizing the three as senior officers even in the dim lighting. "But any hands will do seeing how few of the engineering staff have shown up. Who can work a coil spanner or a flux coupler?"

Joey had no idea how to use any of those things, but she was a pretty fast learner. "If you're willing to tell me what you need me to do, I'm willing to follow those instructions," she said, looking at him with puzzled look. "Wait... there's no one else here?"

Why? Why did he have to be all the way up on Deck Four in Transporter Room One? And have to go all the way down to Deck Nineteen for Main Engineering through the bowels of the ship. It wasn't the climbing that bothered Ian or the cramped spaces. Just...the time it took without anything operational. He'd been keeping track of the Deck numbers on the inside and was relieved when Nineteen finally appeared. Once he found an access hatch, he tried to open it. It seemed stuck or just plain old didn't want to move. He wondered if anyone had opened it since it was sealed at space dock. Ian managed to push and pry hard enough and force the door open only to find out that it was further from the floor than he expected. The Transporter Chief fell out head first and somersaulted before landing on the floor. "OW! What the hell?!" he screamed. "That was a stupid place to put Jeffries Tube hatch. Idiot designers." Ian sat up and felt the shards of isolinear chips in his pockets. "Well there goes that," he said as he stood up. Once he got his bearings, he started heading for Engineering.

Looking up at the Lieutenant Junior Grade that just arrived in the room, the Kelpian held flux coupler out to Joey. "The ship shook," he answered. "And the power came out. When things came to a stop and the emergency lighting came back, the twenty of us that were in the room had been reduced to five. I sent th'Zhan and Gomez to check on the matter injectors, and T'pryn to the antimatter pods. Crewman Jacobs was sent to the auxiliary generator. I stayed here trying to get the main door open, among other things. But, now that you're here, we can try and hook up the engineering batteries to the primary consoles and see if we can't start figuring out what's happening."

"Show me what to do and I'll do it," Camila said as she looked around. "How many personnel are here in Engineering?"

Extending the coil spanner to her, he said, "Right now? Just us. This way." He started to walk away, but since Engineering was lit far better than the rest of the ship, he noticed how... sizable Lieutenant Geisler was. "Um," he stammered, reaching for the flux coupler he handed her. "I think I'll have you do something else, Lieutenant." He intended to draft the Trill Commander or the newly arrived Lieutenant into the menial work instead.

Camila took the coil spanner and headed after the Engineer. "Why is everything offline?" she asked.

"I wish I knew," he answered, leading them to several open panels behind the warp core. "The obvious answer is the turbulence we went through. I was monitoring the sensors just before the incident." Standing now in front of the open panels, he said, "The primary junction to the generator was knocked loose in the turbulence. To make matters worse, it's jammed behind the ODN relays. We need to remove the relays to reattach the feed."

Arjin's intrests were peaked when the Kelpian Engineer had said he was monitoring the sensors at the time of the incident. He followed Lieutenant Di Pasquale and asked what he wanted to know direly since he came by in an almost empty ship. "What did you see before and during the incident?", he asked the man. "And is there a tricorder around here somewhere?".

"As I'm sure you're aware, Commander, the nebula doesn't play well with sensors. In fact, I believe I saw a surge in both electromagnetic and theta radiation around the ship just before the turbulence." The Kelpian, by this time, had placed both of his long arms inside the hatches, attempting to grab one of the ODN relays. "Lieutenant, if you would, please loosen the base of this," he instructed the Chief of Security. Back to the Trill Lieutenant Commander, he nodded over to the nearby toolchest. "There are several tricorders in there, and a hyperspanner. If you are able, Commander or Lieutenant," the Kelpian nodded at the newly arrived Lieutenant Beckett, "Behind panel three-seven-beta is the internal comm relays. Make sure the relays are in order for when the power comes back online."

Joey had been too shocked to say anything right away, but now that her wits were back, she looked at the Kelpian. "Something else to do? Why?" the sizable woman demanded, but she took the flux coupler from her anyway. Right now they needed to get things running again. "I may have my own gravitational pull, but I can do anything anyone else here can. Give me my instructions so I can get to work."

"You can help me lift these ODN relays out of here so we can reach the power feeds," replied the Kelpian. "I've already tripped the circuits, so there's no danger of shock, however we must move these to reach the feed."

"See? That wasn't so hard, now was it?" the Intel Chief asked, looking to the Kelpian for a moment before she went to carry out the task he'd given her. Joey was afraid she was going to mess something up, but given the condition of the ship, could she possibly hurt things more than they already were? She began to lift the relays out and set them aside, trying to make it easier to reach the feed. "I'm just about done here. What's next?"

Camila went to where the tricorders were and selected one, then retrieved a hyperspanner after she figured out which one it was. Finally, she went to go decouple the ODN relays and hoped that she didn't mess up.

Arjin drew in a long breath. "Theta radiation! If that is the case we need to be very careful. We need to be scanning for residue of it as quick as possible. That stuff is not good for out health if we have to deal with it."

Stepping over to the toolchest he picked up a tricorder. "That might also be a problem if we want to form a reliable warpfield. As for the EM. That might be what shut us down in the first place."

At that moment, an engineer, a petty officer, emerged from the Jeffries Tube access, only to pause in the face of three senior officers assisting Lieutenant Kemm. Regaining his composure, he stepped forward. "Antimatter injectors look good, however something isn't right with the antimatter. Almost like it's slightly out of phase. There's no way we can use any of it."

The Kelpian didn't care much for that information, however, he had to attack situations one problem at a time. "Let's focus on getting power back for now." With the ODN relays removed, he lifted the power feed and restored its connects. "Lieutenants, lets get these relays back into position. As soon as this is done, we can fire up auxiliary power."

Without a word, Joey started to put things back in their rightful places. She was anxious. Power meant she'd be able to find her husband, but a huge part of her hoped the young man she'd sent on the search and rescue mission would have some news for her soon. The not knowing was eating her alive inside, but she knew she needed to do her part to get things going again.

Camila finished her work and checked it with her tricorder, then gave a nod when it told her the connection was solid. "It's all set," she told the Kelpian.

Ian had removed panel three-seven-beta and began work on the internal comm relays. A few of them weren't in working order, which was odd enough. And the relays he'd put in his pockets wouldn't work due to the fall he'd taken. But this was Main Engineering, there should be plenty of them. After grabbing a toolkit and putting some new relays in, he ran a quick test. A slight variance was off which was easily correctable. "Alright," he said, "internal communication systems are ready to go."

Lieutenant Kemm and the petty officer relocated themselves to two nearby consoles where, despite the power outages, were still functional thanks to a reserve power supply and independent computer interface. Quietly they shared information back and forth as they entered commands on their consoles, acknowledging and attending to warning after warning. Finally, a hum began to sound throughout the room. Overhead lights flickered before coming fully back to life. Consoles flickered as the computer functions were restored. All that was left to power up was the warp core, but that behemoth was going to present a unique set of challenges.

"Power has been restored," reported the Kelpian. "Try the communications now."

Ian was still kneeling next to the internal comm relays. "Will do," he said, standing up. The lights in the room made things a whole lot easier. He entered some commands into the console and waited a few seconds. Some rather offensive sounding beep and chirrups met his ears. "Didn't expect you to work on the first turn anyway," he said to the console. Another few different commands and it was ready to go. "Engineering to Bridge."

"Ensign ch'Dai here," replied a relieved and youthful voice over the comm system. "It's good to hear someone's voice. Status report."

Camila straightened up and wiped her hands on her uniform pants, then replaced the equipment. "What's next?"

The Kelpian Lieutenant moved over to the pool table to get a better handle on the situation until more personnel showed up, and by doing so, he left the three senior officers and Lieutenant Beckett to communicate with the bridge. In his first glance at the Black Hawk's schematics, Lieutenant Kemm saw so much that was wrong with the ship. If they weren't so far away from a dry dock, he'd suggest a tow.

He tapped his own combadge and spoke, "Lieutenant Kemm to Lieutenant Hawthorn." Kemm had begun to start a couple level four diagnostics on the primary systems and paused when his ears did not hear a response. He tapped his badge again, thinking it might not have connected with the communications system. He heard the customary chirp which was indicative of a fully functioning system and again spoke, "Lieutenant Kemm to Lieutenant Hawthorn."

There was still no answer. Kemm immediately assumed that the Lieutenant was either caught up in other repairs, or was perhaps incapacitated by the turbulence. Still, he had to be sure. "Computer, locate Lieutenant Hawthorn."

The computer beeped and whirred in reply, a little sluggish after having to work with systems that were not fully powered. "Lieutenant Hawthorn is not on board."

"Bridge, standby. We'll give a status report when we have one," Joey said as her brows furrowed at the mention to Hawthorn not being on board. What the hell did that mean? They were all just in the conference room. She saw him with her own eyes. "Computer, locate Captain Geisler and the rest of the senior staff with the exception of Lieutenant Di Pasquale, Lieutenant Geisler and Lieutenant Commander Djinx."

Another familiar beep and whirr came through the speakers, though this whirr was extended as the ship's internal sensors conducted multiple sweeps per the inquiry. "There are no additional senior staff members on board this vessel."

"Computer, how many personnel are on the ship at the present?" Camila asked as a follow up.

And, yet another whirring and beeping melody as the sensors initiated a full sweep of the vessel. After several seconds, the computer emotionlessly replied, "There are one hundred and twenty nine lifesigns aboard the Black Hawk."

Joey looked to Camila as all blood drained from her face, a new sense of panic rising inside of her. They weren't on the ship at all. Harvey wasn't on the ship. She staggered a few steps and fell against the bulkhead as nausea began to set in. What the hell could have possibly happened? And so quickly? The computer had to be wrong. There was no question about it. People didn't just disappear into thin air, so it was time to test the artificial intelligence. "Computer, what is our current year?"

A buzz was the first sound to reply this time. "Unable to connect to Starfleet's Chronometric Network for verification. The current date on record is February 4th, 2389."

The Intel Chief pinched the bridge of her nose. The damn Zone was responsible for all of this somehow, but she couldn't figure out the how or the why. There was still data to analyze, and she couldn't even do anything about that yet. "I don't like any of this," she said, trying to keep herself from hyperventilating. A large part of their crew was missing, and they needed to be found. Something definitely wasn't right, and now they needed to find out what that was exactly. "Computer, what is the last recorded incident both inside and outside the ship prior to sensors going offline?"

Another buzz. "Sensor logs from 0920 to 0926 are corrupted. Recovery work is fifteen percent complete."

Arjin watched as Lieutenant Geisler fell down against the side of the ship. He sped over to her and cheched if help was needed. "Lietenant,..... Joey. Are you all right? Do you need be taken to sickbay?"

As she directly started to interrogate the computer, he deducted she was not too much injured. When he aknowledged the computer's responses however, he was puzzled. So he added a question of his own. "Computer, when is the last time Captain Geisler or Doctor Kij's lifesigns have been detected aboard this ship?"

He was greeted with another buzz. "Unable to determine. Internal sensors have been offline between 0926 and 0953."

"I don't need to go to sickbay," Joey said, pushing herself away from the bulkhead. Without power, what good would that do? She looked toward Kemm. "How long before power can be restored to the ship? We need shields and weapons back online while we figure this out. As long as we're without those things, anyone who happens upon us and wants to wage war against us because we stick out like a sore thumb will take us out fairly quickly."

Lieutenant Kemm looked up from the pool table where he'd been doing his best to ascertain their situation, all the while hearing the senior officer's interchange with the bridge and the computer. "The auxiliary power generator is online and holding. Unfortunately, it might be the best we can do. If the antimatter is contaminated, then there's no way to power up the warp core and get primary systems fully online. That means no shields, no weapons. However, we might have another pressing problem. Commander?" he asked the Trill science officer. "I'm no scientist, but what the internal sensors are registering doesn't look good. Can you take a look at this?"

After casting a last concerned look at Lieutenant Geisler, he turned his attention towards the engineer. "Show me.", he said.

When he approached the console he started to read the outcome of the internal sensor data. His eyes went wide as he read further. A dread feeling building up inside of him. Handling the sensors himself to make a deeper and more narrow edged scan, he got the info he wanted. Or rather not wanted.
His face became as pale as a sheet.
"We need the shields up. As in. NOW.", he said to the gathered officers.

The ship is being bombarded with huge amounts of Theta Radiation. It is all over and inside the ship. Not only the ship, but all inside are being bombarded with it. At this rate and with this density and without shields we will all be dead in a matter of days.", he concluded.

Theta radiation? Joey mused, her eyes going wide. Talk about being kicked when you were already down. The stress of knowing her husband was officially missing, along with the majority of the crew, combined with that new bit of information made the Intel Chief feel like she'd just had the wind knocked out of her. Quickly, she found her way to the bulkhead again, her thoughts going to her unborn children. How was this going to affect them? Would they be born with scales and glowing eyes? As the corridor began to spin, Joey tried her hardest to stay focused. Now wasn't the time to completely lose it.

Did no one pay attention? Joey turned her attention to Lieutenant Kemm. "You said if the antimatter is contaminated, which tells me you don't know that it is for sure," she stated, trying to remain as calm as she could and focused on the situation at hand. "Do whatever you need to to figure out if it is or isn't. We need to get the hell out of here."

Ian watched and listened to the exchange of the officers. "If we're being bombarded with Theta radiation, then something has to be doing the bombarding. Internal sensors are up and running, but what about external?"

The Kelpian engineer shook his head. "The computer is running a mandatory L3 diagnostic on the external sensors due to the shut down. Only the Chief Engineer or Chief Ops can override, and from the looks of it, we're stuck there. We'll have them in a few minutes, but who knows how badly the pallets themselves are damaged."

To the pregnant woman, Kemm replied, "We'll work on the antimatter, Lieutenant. For now, I need people. I'm sure everyone on the ship is disoriented, and they're going to be looking for the Captain or First Officer. If we don't have them, then we need to restore the chain of command. Who is the senior most officer?"

"That would be Commander Djinx," Joey stated, looking toward the Trill Chief of Science for a moment before she turned toward Kemm again. She felt a surge of panic rise in her yet again. "Next in line is Lieutenant Di Pasquale." Exposed to radiation, and her fate as well as the fate of her children were now in the hands of others.

"Computer, locate all available personnel in the largest concentrations and display their locations," Camila said.

The computer responded by generating a rotating three-dimensional image of an internal schematic with each lifesign pinpointed with solid dots.

"The Lieutenant is right. We need to take things in our own hands. The rest of the crew will be turning to us to lead in the abscence of the Captain's Presence.", Arjin nodded. "We need to give orders and focus to people."

He turned towards the engineer. "Most important of all will be getting our shields up, engines running and getting external sensors back online. They are all equally important and time is not on our side. So I need everything working as like yesterday. In the abscence of the Chief Engineer, I want you to coordinate things down here. Take as many crew from Engineering and Ops you can gather and make these things your priority."

"I will inform the crew now and I propose we co-ordinate our efforts from the bridge.", he offered to the other two senior officers. "Science and Medical can work together on solutions to counter any sympthones of the radiation. We will find a way."

"Lietenants, any recomendations on the security side of things or other matters? Maybe closing non essential decks to reroute extra power to engineering?"

"We don't have enough power but we do know where everyone is," Camila said as she studied the three dimensional map with all the dots on it. "We can seal those areas off and cut power to everything else not needed."

"Commander Djinx is in charge. It's his call to make," Joey said, looking toward the Trill man.

"Computer, open a ship wide Communication.", Arjin demanded.

The chirping came a bit later than should normaly have been, but he got what he had asked for.

"Attention al personel. This is Lieutenant Commander Djinx. As you all might be aware by now, you will have noticed that some crewmembers are missing from the Black Hawk. Being this is also the case with some of the senior staff, including Captain Geisler and Commander. Teixeira, I willl be taking active command of the ship as most senior officer. Lieutenant Di Pasquale will be acting XO. We will get our ship back in order and get our missing crewmembers back aboard. In order to do so we will need each of you remaining here to work at your best. Running double shifts if needed. I would also like to have the senior officer of each department report to me as soon as possible to me. Djinx out."

Lieutenant Danyl Adan had walked into Main Engineering as the Chief of Security had made her command. He waited. It seemed to him that lately he was always waiting for someone or another. He had been in one of the Jeffries tubes when the ship was attacked. He made he his way down to Engineering because it was the closest and where he figured his skills would be needed most.

"Can I help?" inquired Adan as he stared at the people gathered in the room. "Lieutenant Adan, Ops Officer at your service."

"Not unless you have a cure for theta radiation poisoning with you," the Security Chief said. "Or know a way to stop it."

Ignoring Camila's remark, Arjin turned towards the Ops Chief. "Glad to see you Lieutenant. Nice to have you with us. We will need everything you can give us. I want you to work together with Lieutenant Kemm. We need our drive, shields and sensors back asap. Keep me informed of all progress on an hourly base please."

"Aye, Comm... Captain," replied the Kelpian. Tapping a button, he opened another ship wide channel. "This is Lieutenant Kemm in Engineering. All engineering and operations staff please report to Engineering immediately."

"Yes, Sir," Camila said to Commander Djinx. "Once we seal all all areas where there's no personnel, we can cut life support, gravity and power to those areas and use that for shields."

"That's assuming we can power up the shields in the first place," the acting Chief Engineer observed. "But conserving all we can would be a good idea. This ship has less than a quarter of its assigned crew. No need to act like we have everyone."

"Lieutenant Beckett reporting as ordered," said Ian to the Acting Chief Engineer. His smirk was trying to hide a laugh. But it wasn't working all that well as he let out a chuckle. "Since that mandatory Level Three diagnostic is being run on the external sensors, I'll go ahead and get started on the power shut-off in the areas indicated by Lieutenant Di Pasquale's diagram."

"I could look into the matter/anti-matter mix and see what's up with the warp core," offered Adan.

"It wouldn't matter if we got shields up or not," Joey stated, trying to keep from completely panicking. It was a battle she was having a hell of a time winning, but she was trying her best. "There might be theta radiation outside of the ship, but it's likely coming from inside, too. The antimatter... theta radiation is a byproduct of antimatter waste, and right now, there's nothing containing it." Her nausea began to grow. Was it because she was pregnant? Was it because she'd been exposed to the radiation? Or was it simply because she was struggling to keep herself together? Her guess was any of the above.

"Everyone knows what to do, so let's get started," Camila said. "Lieutenant Beckett, shut down those areas not populated. Lieutenant Geisler, let's see if we can get in contact with those people through the Jeffries Tubes. Lieutenant Adan, check on that matter/antimatter mix." With that, she checked the holographic display again, then set off for the nearest hatch.

"Aye, Sir," acknowledged Adan as he averted his attention to the warp core. So far, this had been one hell of a ride.

"On it, Lieutenant," Ian answered. He stepped up to the table and pulled up the diagram that Camila had been looking at. That made it a lot easier to shut down power in those other areas.

Joey wasn't exactly pleased about her orders, but it was something to keep her busy, and given the things going through her mind presently, that's what she needed. Without a word, the Intel Chief moved away from the rest of them to take care of the task she was given.

Since everybody had their orders, Arjin also left Engineering towards the bridge. It was with a heavy heart because he never wanted the full responsibility of the Captain's chair. Not this way for sure. But people were depending on him keeping his head cool and finding solutions and making the right decisions. He would try not to let them down.

 

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