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First Contact

Posted on Tue Jun 23rd, 2020 @ 3:41pm by Lieutenant Commander Taeler Santu M.D. & Lieutenant P’rel M.D

Mission: In the Family
Location: Undergound Transit Passages
Timeline: "Underground Movement" +15 minutes
Tags: Santu

The unlikely group had been moving through the narrow passages for about quarter of an hour, and Onin could tell the bunch of Starfleet officers were becoming anxious, even more so than they were already. The young Paratan man could tell that various members of the group were muttering to themselves, though couldn't make out their words. As an upper-classman studying Interspecies Comparative Paleobiology, Onin knew that relative to most humanoids Paratans had below average hearing, but their sense of smell from aeons-ago reptilian heritage was excellent.

Onin was picking up on the increasing skin secretions from their new comrades, and felt it best to reassure them; "We're only a few minutes away now, most of us used to play in these tunnels as younglings. The transit metro in this area has only been running again for a few years, it was mostly abandoned in this section for a long time." Onin looked to the woman just beside him, for an alien she was incredibly attractive; "So you're the Captain of the Starfleet ship who attacked the Duke's forces?" he asked, not particularly concerned with the pathetic tribalism of the planet's leaders, and moreso in trying to break the awkward and tense silence.

Santu was broken from her internal musings, wondering what kind of situation they would run into once they got to the communications array, "Oh, I'm not the Captain, no..." then the full question seemed to sink in, "Wait a minute? Attacked the Duke's forces?" She shook her head a bit, "Whomever it was that came after us, we were on a diplomatic mission and were attacked by them. The Ambassador originally assigned to these negotiations got severely injured in the assault." This was going to be far from over, even after they had left this place far behind. There were a couple of things that she had to get to processing, including the intel operative they had picked up along the way.

Onin was genuinely surprised, "I would have thought a Captain - that being, the person responsible for a mission - would have taken over once your ambassador was injured..?". He motioned for her to turn left, into a corridor more brightly lit than the others; "I didn't put much faith in the footage" he muttered, half talking to himself, half to the beautiful alien with the weird nose. "Oh, sorry" he realised that the communications blackout probably didn't occur until after these people had found themselves in trouble - "Here" he reached for his pocket holo and played some cockpit footage "this was all over our public web before it went down, the Duke posted it to our media net and then all the shooting started. You can't trust anything that any of them say-" he snapped, irritated at what the leaders of his world were doing to it, "neither the Queen's Military Forces, not the Government, nor the Duke's movement", Onin finished with the hurt of his world in his voice.

"In Starfleet the one most qualified for the assignment gets assigned," Santu gave a short nod, more for herself than anything else, to emphasise that she had been the most qualified for the assignment. She looked at the footage on the small screen, nodding, that was pretty much what had happened, they had simply omitted the part where they shot first. It made little difference though. The Duke's vessels had been able to scrape the ambassador's ship, but wouldn't have stood a chance against the Athena, even if the shields had been down during the initial assault, "if you cannot trust your leaders, it's time for new leadership," She knew that all too well, "I think it's good that you've protected those dear to you." She looked back over to the others that were following in their footsteps.

Onin nodded solemnly; "I'm afraid that hope will be lost in this latest conflict. The Duke is supposed to represent change, but he's a as corrupt and self interested as the Queen". He turned to look at his group, saddened for the future which awaited them all on Parata. "I'm afraid our world is lost to the chaos for a long time yet. I envy you and your colleagues, coming from a society as fair and indiscriminate as the Federation."

They continued for another minute or so before coming to a large metal door, some bright yellow signs indicated that they were probably not allowed entrance there, but it was in Paratan, and Santu wouldn't have given it a second thought if she had been able to read it anyway, "P'Rel, can you open this lock? You know, without having to shoot the door out of its hinges?"

The disguised Vulcan locked eyes with the Commander, there was obviously some reason she had broken cover. Ignoring some confused looks from the Paratan children, P'rel pulled the phaser from her belt and fired two high intensity, narrow confinement beams at the protruding hinges at the top and bottom left side of the metal door. It creaked and fell forward, being caught by the locking mechanism on the right side and falling away in that direction, coming to a rest, bent against the wall in a thin cloud of dust. Though hidden by Vulcan stoicism, P'rel at least had amused herself in knowing that the Commander would find the weapons discharge unnecessary. "Expediency is a most important factor here" P'rel stated aloud, directed to the Bajoran officer, as she stepped past here and into the room beyond.

"Be careful" Onin yelled. There's a lot of equipment in there..." he looked at his friendly walking companion and said in a lower voice, "I know some of it is part of the old communications system, but I don't know what most of it does..."

Santu also wanted to yell at the woman, but decided that now wasn't the time nor the place to have a discussion about the continued insubordination of her orders and requests. One of the reasons to ask for a silent breach was that they had no way of knowing whether there was someone on the other side, and entering in the way they did could antagonise a potential ally, "If there's anyone in there, we come in peace," She didn't hear anything in response, "I'm Lieutentant Commander Taeler, of the United Federation of Planets starship Athena, and we would like to use the equipment in this room to hail our vessel." Again there was no response. She stepped inside the room carefully poking her head around the burnt and smouldering remains of the hinges before stepping fulling inside, "Room's clear." She walked around the room to find what would look like a shortwave communications device, since those were much easier to handle and manipulate than some of the more advanced comms systems out in the universe.

She spotted what looked like a device, at the very least it had a microphone and a speaker. The only thing they needed to figure out is how to aim it at their vessel in orbit, "There. Can we configure that to do the job?"

P'rel looked to the young man, who was decidedly himself just looking at the Starfleet Commander in a rather obvious lovestruck awe. She was reluctant to share this kind of technology with most other officers without clearance, let alone a civillian kid from a backwards planet. Nonetheless, she had just barbed the Bajoran about expediency and felt it best not to let her actions appear hypocritical.

"This..." P'rel began, pulling out again the emergency personal transporter from up her left sleeve "...will also function as a communication device using the translocation relays in the nano-circuitry. Perhaps you have some useful..." she looked for the right word, enough to antagonise the Bajoran but insufficient to cause any real offence, "..'rebel' skills we can put to use?". P'rel pulled open a service panel on the communication device and held the transporter with her thumb and forefinger, as if looking for a matching receptacle. "If you can jury rig this into the device somehow, it will act as an emergency beacon. A simple set of coordinates with a Starlfeet Command ID code will be transmitted on a classified Starfleet emergency frequency. It's not much, but coordinates with an authentication code for your Captain's eyes only should certainly get the attention of your ship, assuming it's in range."

Onin looked between the woman he'd been walking with, and the strange Paratan doctor, or whatever she was. Linnan, P'rel...whatever her name she was obviously doing her best to wind up the pretty commander with the wrinkled nose. His face must've been a blank, he realised, as he racked his brain trying to make sense of everything which had suddenly happened.

Santu took a moment to look at the device's innards, it had been a long time since she'd jury-rigged anything, let alone a piece of alien tech she didn't even know of two days ago. She took in a deep breath, trying to connect the dots on the electronics in her mind. She remembered how the engineer in their resistance cell talked about machinery, it immediately hit her with a pang of guilt and sorrow. She didn't know when or how it happened exactly but she knew that the man had died in the final weeks of the occupation. She had seen his name on the wall. The same wall that also held her name.

Stepping away from the panel she took a few steps around the room before spotting what she was looking for. She took aside a panel from another unrelated device, looked around its innards a bit and then pulled some wires from it as well as a transistor and she broke off a thin piece of protective metal. With all of that in tow, she walked back over to the comms device.

Using her teeth to strip away some of the protective coating around the cable she prepared it to hook it up to both the communications device and the transponder. Taking a moment to look at it again she plugged the stripped wire into one of the connectors. She used the piece of metal to pop the back off the Starfleet transponder handed to her by the intell operative, exposing the tiny micro-chip inside. She looked for the part of it she needed to feed into the communicator. She put the wire against it and then used one of the thin metal 'legs' from the transistor to tie it in place, trying to avoid touching anything else inside lest she'd cause a catastrophic short circuit.

It seemed to hold, and she placed it gently back on the desk, reached over to the comms unit and flicked the switched. She rarely invoked the Prophets, but right now she was hoping they would help her get this message out to the Captain and get them the hell out of there.


Lieutenant Commander Taeler Santu, M.D.
Executive Officer


Lieutenant P'Rel, M.D.
Chief Intelligence Officer

USS Athena


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