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The Approach

Posted on Sun Jan 3, 2021 @ 6:09pm by Commander Ajani Carter & Lieutenant JG R'Imus tr'Aimne & Lieutenant Commander Dr. Elisabet Intarrah Ph.D MD & Lieutenant JG T'Prynn & Lieutenant Commander Ethan Brash & Lieutenant JG Sanok & Lieutenant Narisa & Master Chief Petty Officer Etzel Hannis

Mission: Episode 2: Rising Tides
Location: Bridge
Timeline: MD 06
1454 words - 2.9 OF Standard Post Measure

The Eagle was approaching the L-Class planet where they had traced an undocumented outbreak of the harvester virus. The planet had been uninhabited for decades, having even been bypassed by the Dominion. It was far enough from the boarder that the war had ignored it completely. She had gathered her senior staff to the bridge for their approach, everyone was involved in this and she needed their input from the get go.

Before them a mostly green and blue planet swam before them. Sensors were showing a lot of early green life, mostly mosses with a few more complex such as shrubs and trees, but mostly moss. The oceans were teeming with life but the land masses were pretty empty. Even so there was a lot of carbon dioxide, not quite toxic levels but staying down there too long without extra O2 wasn't a bright idea. Ajani has seen a few L-Class worlds and this one didn't really look very different from the others.

"Ethan" she said looking at the second officer at Operations "Are there any energy sources on or around that planet?"

Ethan swiped his red hand across the console and- like a card tossed through the air- a transparent window slid into place on the main viewscreen, filled with several data points Ethan had personally screened as mission-relevant.

"Atmosphere isn't friendly to scans, but a little brute force with a state of the art sensor array at short range can get you all the front row seats you desire." Ethan tapped his console, highlighting each new data point as he went, "There are some leftover satellites in orbit, but they're either destroyed or defunct, no energy signatures. The surface seems to have some ruins, but no energy signatures down there, either. None that are strong enough to not be random EM interference from the storms, anyway."

Carter nodded, she had expected this, "Mr Sanok, please launch a trio of Class 3 probes, program them to enter a polar orbit. Lise, see what you can do to break through those EM fields, work with Ethan" She was sat to Carters right in the XO's chair. "Narisa, please take a seat." Ajani nodded at the chair on the left. "Tell me what you make of this world."

Narisa wanted to roll her eyes, instead the Orion calmly sat down. "Looks like a lot of fun" her tone was sarcastic.

At the back of the bridge, the turbo lift doors parted and the Vulcan mission advisor arrived in the command centre, standing just behind the Captain, observing until such a time as her input was requested, or she felt the need to share something.

Sanok quickly prepared the probes. When they were ready, he launched them.

"Probes are away, Captain." He waited for their data to begin coming in.

Ethan turned in his chair, nodding. Master Chief Hannis returned the nod, taking over at the Ops station as the red-skinned Second Officer got up and made his way towards the science station. "You do what you need to do with the sensors and I'll make sure you have the power you need." He said, keeping his voice to a reasonably low volume.

"I'm not expecting a miracle. Even with sensors on max, we'd need to confirm the scans with an away team. This biosphere should not have anything more than simple proteins, and viruses are not simple proteins." Lise explained.

"Right," Ethan reached over and brought up the map of the planet, "but the probes we launched are entering the atmosphere. Where there's an atmosphere, there's air. Where there's air, there's sound." Ethan paused for a moment to let it sink in. "We can make a topographically updated map of the surface with sonar. I know that isn't much, but it's better than going in blind. We'll let the away teams do the real scanning once they're up close and personal, yes?"

"We will need enviro suits. Planet is a primordial maelstrom. Examine the storms... and those moons." Lise pointed out.

"Not my favorite vacation spot," Ethan shrugged, "but I'm sure we'll manage."

"Seems like Enviro Suits are de rigueur for this mission" The CMO quipped.

Carter listened to her officers, she didn't discourage chatter on the bridge like many captains did. She found that her when people relax a little they do their jobs better. "There was a colony on that world at some point in the past 40 years, any sign if it now? It was the sight of an out break of this virus after starfleet had helped destroy it, so somehow this world is important. Run scans and see what you get." She intended for her officers to scan from their own point of view.

Ethan answered the Captain first, "As of this moment, we haven't cut through the EM interference, yet. Sending an away team to the surface may get results quicker."

"Indeed. We need to go planetside." Lise noted. "The old colony may have the clues we need to understand what happened here."

Ajani had yet to tell any of her crew about the intel that Kerr had brought her upon his arrival a few hours ago. "Okay." she considered what the best action would be. Beaming down into that would be a nightmere, and a shuttle would get tossed around. "Can we get some pattern enhancers down there, create a safe beaming zone?"

"Captain," at this point, the Vulcan finally stepped forward, "perhaps a shuttlecraft would be a wiser choice? It would enable us to get closer to the planet, obtain scans and, when required, put down in a safe location. Nothing indicates any risk to such a craft," she advised.

Carter nodded "Maybe with the right pilot" she said "But those storms are not advised flying conditions" she said turning to look at T'Prynn. Carter had come up through the ranks as a pilot and she would... well damn she would take it as a challenge. "Okay, you find a pilot cocky enough and you can take a shuttle." she grinned "Lise, Narisa, Sanok and T'Prynn, please head on down to the colony and head to these coordinates" she said inputting the location of the lab that Kerr had found into a holo-screen and flicked her wrist, transferring it to their tricorders.

"As you wish Captain," the Vulcan nodded. An away mission already. Not what she had expected.

"We need EV suits." Lise mentioned. "We do not know the half-life of this virus, because the people who made it are dead. There's plenty we don't know here."

"Ev suits Captain" the Doctor said firmly.

"Yes doctor, in EV suits. Take an emergency shelter kit and be armed." Ajani wondered what else they would find down there. "I want to keep the party small. "Lise you have command of the team. Sanok, you are the security chief, you know your jobs. T'Pyrnn your experience will be vital to them down there and Narisa, well I will explain more once are you are down there."

"And Phaser rifles." Lise suggested strongly. "Those who kept this planet secret, will want it secret. We're dealing with potentially ruthless people. I have a feeling we will meet them sooner than later. And they're mad enough to consider actually using these weapons against another sentient."

An overabundance of caution from the scientist. The Vulcan mission advisor silently concurred with the much younger Executive Officer. Better to be safe than sorry, after all.

"I still want you to take pattern enhancers with you, and take spares. If your shuttle takes damage I still want to be able to get you out. Questions?"

The CMO looked like she had more issues with them going than questions but she merely shook her head and stepped off to the side to order the EVA Suits be prepped and additional medical kits be loaded into the shuttle. And then she gave additional orders for care for those who were suffering from the virus while she was off the ship.

"Lise, Ethan. Is the probe giving any more useful data?" She was putting her people in the line of fire, but if there was any hope of stopping this she had to put them there.

"Before you go, i want you to remember that while this mission is important there is no need to put yourself in any undue danger." she looked at each of them, seemingly trying to remember each of them in turn. "Go, and don't die..." she arranged her features to appear annoyed "the paper work is horrendous" she said deadpan.

The Orion CMO merely narrowed her eyes. She took a breath, turned on her heal and stalked from the bridge. She did not appreciate the humor


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