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Prologue - Delayed Response

Posted on Tue Feb 27th, 2018 @ 7:21am by Lieutenant Commander Azumi Morganna & Captain Sun Mei Xiang

Mission: Of Persephone
Location: Shanghai, in Orbit around Golovin


Sun gave an exhausted sigh. The casualty list was miraculously low from their interaction with the Protectorate. The wave had injured a lot of crew members, and some pretty badly across all the ships, but for the most part they only had a few that were killed. As tragic as that was, she couldn't help but be relieved that it was as few as it was. But then there was the grim realization that there was no one to contact, at least, not right now. She just had to save the letters. That was enough to make her need a walk. Why she went to Engineering though was beyond her. Maybe to see progress.

As she entered a crewman stopped what he was doing to salute as she passed, warranting a quick, "As you were. How are things going down here?" Sun asked.

The crewman was a bit confused for a moment. "Coming along, sir. I don't have details for anything but power supply systems - which are good." He seemed nervous. "Only a couple took a hit in the fight, and we've got all of them repaired but one, I think."

"Crewman, I don't need a full report." Sun said with a smile, "I'm more worried about morale. Where's the Chief?"

"I'd check the office, but I'm not one hundred percent sure, sir." The crewman said.

"Thank you, crewman," Sun said, before heading deeper into main engineering.

Although casualties were light, the damage that confronted Sun was rather extensive, bulkheads were torn open, scorch marks marred the carpet in places. Occasionally a panel would erupt into a shower of sparks. Engineering crew scurried about, seemingly without direction or purpose. Rushing from one repair to the next.

There was still no sign of the Chief.

As glad as she was that casualties were light, Sun was frustrated with how much damage they had taken. It wouldn't happen again against this particular foe again. Still, as she stepped over a shattered piece of bulkhead she found herself sighing. She needed an experienced engineer out here, a good team. Not just for the general and obvious reasons, like general ship and colony handling - but for this. To keep her ship together, to keep her confident they could make it back to port. Finally, she was broken from her thoughts when there was a rocking of the ship. For a split second, it almost felt distant until there was a ripple effect, with a rumbling rising through the bulkheads before another console exploded in engineering, coolant hissing from a nearby junction, and the crew snapping to action.

Alarms suddenly blared. The ship rocked violently, a strange sense of deja vu washed over Sun, as everything seemed to shimmer for the briefest of moments.

The lights had dimmed and faltered as reports started to trickle in. After a few minutes, Sun had steadied herself enough and grabbed the first crewman she found at the pool table. "Report," She said quickly to the young man.

"Explosion on deck seventeen, near the outer hull." The petty officer said quickly. "Fusion generators are destabilizing." He added, "Reading fires on the deck. Spike in chroniton readings in the area. Medical teams are responding. There was an engineering team nearby."

"Where are our damage control teams?" Sun spoke quickly.

"I'm reading one in lower engineering. Deck Seventeen," The petty officer said with a slightly confused tone in her voice, one that Sun missed entirely.

The CO slapped her commbadge, "Sun to lower engineering,"

"Ma'am, the only team we had down there before the explosion was near the epicenter." The petty officer spoke quietly, trying to stay under the band the comms would pick up.

Mei paused for a moment when she realized that. She tapped her badge lightly to mute it. "Not a team rushing to help?"

"No ma'am," The petty officer said softly. "This is only one signal and literally appeared after the explosion, but it popped right up on the computer as an engineering team."

Sun tapped her badge again, one of those spur of the moment thoughts she just followed rather than going with the saner ideas. "Repeat, Sun to Lower Engineering. We've felt an explosion and sensors detect fires spreading. Any officer - I need a report, now."

"Chief engineer Azumi to Captain Sun... I'm on deck seventeen... I... I must of hit my head,.... sir, there's been some sort of explosion... I... Captain I see bodies .... It looks like... who? Sir they are Starfleet engineering uniforms.... but I don't know these people.... somethings wrong.... I don't feel..."

The voice trailed off.

The petty officer started to ask 'who', but stopped when Sun held up a hand. "Azumi, we were hit with a chroniton torpedo explosion we think." She said quietly, "So, you might be injured, or confused." She swallowed and didn't feel right having a lie of omission, "We don't know the exact effects, but the radiation has been affecting everyone differently. Medical teams and damage control teams are on their way now. But can you give me any more information. How many injured are there? How bad is the damage?"

"A chromiton torpedo? Wha..? From where? Who... ?? Hang on a second sir, checking his guy for a pulse." There was a long pause. "He's out cold sir, breathing but completely unresponsive. Captain he has Chief engineer pips, but I don't know what ship he's from or how he got here... something's very wrong sir."

"Hang on a second I see somebody else, there's a lot of smoke down here sir, hard to tell the damage... OH MY GOD."

There was a retching sound. Coughing... then more retching.

"Sorry captain, it's a... it was a woman." She cleared her throat. "She's dead sir, it looks like she's been split in half... right down the middle." There was another cough.

"Sir It looks like one side of her has aged, it's all decomposed even the carpet looks older, Captain Sun... whats going on? Somethings.... Somethings very wrong.... I see... I see lights..."

The voice grew fainter and fainter....



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