Ammerra, Deep Space One
Floating above the blue and white planet recently named Ammerra, Station Deep Space 1glisened in the light of the star IXr5, or better known locally as Tumerra. It is the first of what Star Fleet hoped to be a chain of Deep stations at the farthest edge of explored space. Home to eight hundred officers and personnel it serves as science post, a way point for the colonizing of the planet below, and the first line of defense against whatever lay beyond on in the vast unknown.
Robert opened his eyes to a pitch dark room, his dream dissolving like a morning mist. Twisting over to lay on his back he felt the pain of an old wound nagging at him again between his shoulder blades. A Klingon blade had severed an entire swath of muscle tissue and try as he might the Chief Surgeon wasn’t able to mend it quite as completely as he would have liked.
“Computer, shades open.” he called out.
As the portals in the Captains quarters opened to reveal the planet Ammerra far below the station, the computer started the morning status report.
“All decks report operations nominal. There are three arrivals scheduled for today, the first from the Vulcan Colony at 0600 hours, the Science Vessel Krutura. The second is from Alpha Gamon Prime at 0900 hours, a cargo vessel in route to Ammera, cargo manifest shows an extensive list of construction materials. The last arrival of the day is at 1800 hours, from Earth, USS Excelsior caring
your relief, Captain Dresden .”
Captain Robert Snow swung his legs off the edge of the bed and stood up, stretching. “Anything else?” he asked looking at the monitor over his desk.
“There are several messages from Department heads, none are marked as urgent. Most wishing you a happy birthday and retirement. There is one message from the command deck, Lieutenant Marks requests you speak with him at the soonest.”
Robert pulled on his tunic. “Marks? Why wouldn’t he go through channels? He’s stationed at deep space scans this week isn’t he?”
The computer responded instantly. “Yes.”
He didn’t like his officers breaching protocol. “Display Lt. Marks file please.”
On the monitor a picture of the young officer appeared with summary of his last months assignments along with remarks from his superiors. A quick review showed him an excellent officer, never having gone around the chain of command.
“No mention of what he wants?”
“Negative, only that it was urgent.”
Roberts walked over to the portal, watching the soft clouds sweeping beneath him. It was a three month trip back to Earth. That was if the Excelsior was as fast as advertised. It had taken him six months to get here five years earlier.
He had not really intended to do much in the way of work today. Commander Onara had been notified not to bother him unless the most extreme situation were to arise. His Captains shuttle waited for him in the docking bay for one last flight down to Ammerra. One last breath of fresh air for at least twelve weeks.
“Ok, send Marks a message to meet me in the shuttle bay in 10.”
“Done. Anything else?”
“Yea, promise me no surprises my last day of work.”
The artificial intelligence that was the stations electronic soul let the request go without a serious answer. “Of course Sir.”
Lt. Marks stood nervously beside the Captains Yacht. A bead of sweat formed just at his brow as the voice of Commander Onara echoed in his mind.
“Do you understand?” Onara’s last words to him had been. After he had explained his findings and pleaded to bring it to the Senior Staff’s attention. But Onara would have none of it. She felt Marks data lacked enough independent proof to cause an alarm. But Marks was certain enough to risk his career for the first time and make an end run directly to the Old Man.
The shuttle bay doors parted and he watched as Captain Snow came across the deck, a hint of disappointment on his face. A security officer stayed two steps back, and if looks could kill Marks would be lying on the deck a lifeless corpse.
As the pair approached Snow nodded. “Come with me.” he ordered as he hopped thru the hatch of the shuttle. Marks stood for the first time in the Captains personal craft, wondering at the appointments. It looked nothing like a standard shuttle, it was more civilian than Star Fleet with the wood veneer panels and soft gold light.
“You have five minutes while I prep. Get started.” the Captain growled.
Marks cleared his throat. “Sir. I’ve been performing deep space scans for the last week, focused in Sector 5 of the Gamma Quadrant.”
“Yea, You wasted 30 seconds telling me what I already know. Your reports show nothing of any concern.”
“That is correct Sir, Until three hours ago.”
Snow turned in his seat. The young man before him was obviously scared, but he wasn’t sure if it was himself he was scared of , or the information he carried.
“What have you got Marks?”
“There is something headed this way.”
“Something? A ship, A comet? What the Hell son!”
“I don’t know Sir, I know its moving faster than light. Warp 8...I believe.”
Now Marks had the Captains attention. No known ship moved as fast as that. “Warp 8? Are you sure?”
“Uh…no sir. It appears to speed up and slow down with no pattern. But Warp 8 is its average speed over the last hour.”
Robert rapped his fingers on the armrest of the pilots chair. “And you can’t tell just what it is?”
Marks shook his head. “No Sir, only the spatial distortion of a warp field,….Strong enough my sensors can’t see thru.”
Staring at the deck Marks took a breath. “Large enough to envelope the station twice over.”
“Distance and heading?”
“Present speed ….it will pass within a few light years of us in the next day or so.”
The frustration was rising up Roberts neck like a bad headache. “That’s the best you can do?”
“It keeps making minor course alterations. Without any pattern.”
“And why would Commander Onara not bring this to me?”
Marks shuffled his feet nervously. “She questions my conclusion. The object is far out still… the data…. Could be off….a bit. But Sir. If I’m right… someone …from out there is coming.”
Looking at the deck hands on the shuttle bay floor moving away and the green light blinking on his control panel Roberts took a long breath.
“Continue monitoring, keep Commander Onara informed, do not tell her you came to see me, she’ll have you in the brig before you could apologize.”
“Yes Sir. What are we going to do?”
Roberts straightened up in his seat. “Nothing yet. If your right it’s going to be Captain Dresden ‘s problem. We’ll brief him when he arrives tonight.”
“Yes Sir.” Marks answered turning on his heel to leave.
As the Captains Yacht cleared DS1 and started its decent to Ammerra Captain Robert Snow, who turned 85 today, the oldest Star Fleet Captain in history, felt almost disappointed. He really, really had looked forward to a quite day, a last walk around the shop, and then a peaceful exit to stage right. Somehow now, he didn’t really think that was how it was going to go down.
The Reboot Series
Da-Kuv t’Yoshuhlnak- The Dragon Circle
|Part Two, On a scientific mission to return ancient relics to Vulcan, the crew of the USS Adventure find some things will not stay in the past.|
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