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Topic: Chapter 05: The Battle of the Apertures [ Day 06 | 1005 hrs. ] (Read 1596 times) previous topic - next topic

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  • Top Hat
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Re: Chapter 05: The Battle of the Apertures [ Day 06 | 1005 hrs. ]
Reply #50
[ Cmdr Ranaan Ducote | Main Bridge | Deck 01 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy ] attn: @Auctor Lucan @chXinya @FollowTomorrow @trevorvw et al

God, we never stood a chance.

The assessment was not necessarily applicable to their current situation, but as the full extent of the battle became apparent, Ducote saw how, well, futile the Endeavour's reaction had been. A flotilla of KDF cruisers hadn't yet been enough to destroy a Cube - how could a single, ambushed science vessel have managed? The truism that 'only a fool picks a fair fight' was far less fun when you were the one on the receiving end of the mismatch.

Callouts were made, orders issued, and long experience of hearing those tones helped him snap out of his reverie. Today was a day to fight like Amasov - he'd survived the Borg once. Surviving them now would bring him level with the Old Man. His face set as his resolve recovered.

Ducote ran over their personnel dispositions again, a final last-second check. Wenn had the same idea:

"Commander Ducote, make sure Kai Akoni is aware of the development here on the bridge, so that he may alert his teams of any boarding Drones that may be due, and find out the status on our Reman cloak..."

"Aye aye," he responded, tapping his badge as the Bajoran turned away to continue issuing orders. "Akoni, Ducote. We have engaged the Borg. Prepare to receive guests-"

The deck rocked as the Theurgy took a battering. "-merda na minha.. prepare quickly. Out." The next hit took down their shields, a new wave of alarms sounding and the floating display before him lighting up red to highlight the damaged sections - with blinking dots representing foreign transporter signatures. There was even a cluster on the-

"Shit," he muttered, looking over as the trio of drones finished materialising and sprang into action. One of the bridge crew, a vulcanoid he at first thought was merely trained to shield their thoughts, launched herself at a drone menacing the command team, soon treating them all to the sound of ringing metallic impacts. Fuck's sake, Soong, now you're leaving them all over the galaxy? He drew the phaser the local security bods had finally allowed him, and tried to draw a bead on one of the others, but there were too many moving bodies betwixt him and the Borg - not to mention more than a few flying phaser bolts of their own.

Lowering his arm, but keeping hold of the phaser, he turned his attention back to the display, monitoring how well everyone else was faring. Slow work, predictably - even before a drone got its personal shield working, they were tough nuts to crack. Ducote made sure there was a live link between this readout and the security centre, if there wasn't already. He knew Kai well enough that he was confident the man would call for help if he needed it. Initiative had always been something he encouraged.

Worryingly, several of the Borg signatures were stationary, paused in compartments and corridors. On cue, warnings of computer intrusion came up. Where's the rogue AI when you need it? A secondary report popped up on the status of their firewalls. Gradually, the number of Borg signatures ticked down as the crew responded. He allowed himself a breath. Okay. We have a cloak?

Ducote raised his hand, still gripping his phaser, to tap his badge to ask after that before Engineering beat him to it.

"Lieutenant Suq to Bridge. Cloak is ready to go. We had a drone in here, so the Borg know we have it. Remember not to fire weapons under cloak unless you really want to be seen for some reason."

"Acknowledged, Lieutenant. There's a security team nearby; I'll route them to you. Bridge out."

"... where is that cloak?" Wenn demanded. Reasonably enough, in the circumstances.

"Cloak is ready!" he called forward, adding, "The Borg are aware of it."

Message relayed, he went back to helping coordinate their boarding defence effort, pinning down drones with crossfire where they could, or just obliterating them with massed fire otherwise. One team in a ventral section even managed to evacuate one by dropping an emergency force field that had covered a hull breach. Ducote raised an impressed and more-amused-than-he-ought-to-be eyebrow at the sight of the little blinking dot leaving the vessel and fading from the display. One of the ensigns at the station next to him cut off a drone with a series of force fields, then flooded the impromptu compartment with vented plasma from an overhead line. "Ouch," Ducote commented as he watched the dot vanish, clapping a hand on his shoulder. "Nice work."

The young officer shrugged. "Security in that section were busy."

Trent called up about a vulnerability, but didn't deign to give many details - not that it mattered; Wenn and Stark obviously knew what was up. He wasn't sure he was happy about the prospect of taking a dreadnought into a close debris field but it was technically a shortcut and they were running short on good options anyway. But still. Things weren't hopeless.

First shots out, neither combatant down.

What else you got?
Nator 159:
Ranaan Ducote:

Re: Chapter 05: The Battle of the Apertures [ Day 06 | 1005 hrs. ]
Reply #51
[ PO1 Morgan Song | Main Bridge | Deck 01 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy ]

The bridge had exploded into a frenzy of action and death, sending Morgan's stomach skittering; but everywhere there was danger, the crew of the Theurgy rose to meet it. There was Lieutenant Okafor, taking down a drone; there was the Vulcan in Tactical, flinty and cool as she fired on the enemy; there was the Science officer from the Cayuga, meeting the Borg head on with an axe.

Morgan wasn't a fighter, but he didn't need to be. He had a job to do. He kept to his post. A strange, focused calm settled over him as he turned back to his console. He supposed this is what it meant, to believe in your team. The threat within the bridge was handled; he could focus on the one without.

The shields. They were what was important now. He'd already scanned the ship for life readings, pulling gravity and life support from everywhere that was unmanned and non-essential. He was walking a tightrope, a delicate balancing act between cutting too much power and leaving some crew members stranded, or not cutting enough and leaving them all exposed. And the shields were hungry.

But they were also holding. For now. More than holding; the tertiary grid had flickered back to life. Good, that should keep any boarders away. Any more, at least. His scan had brought up Borg life signs on multiple decks of the Theurgy, and he raised the report with Security. No doubt the crew members on those decks were reacting in much the same way as had those on the bridge, and the firewalls were holding off the cyber intrusions. With any luck, the boarders could be subdued without any significant loss of life.

The Cube hung in front of them, impassive and cold. Almost uncaring, as if this entire engagement was beneath it, of no more consequence than the swatting of a fly.

'Life support has been cut in all non-inhabited areas, sir,' he reported to the captain. 'Primary and secondary shields at 80% power and climbing; tertiary back online, but regen is compromised. Weapons array at 90% functionality.'

And then came the call about the cloak and -- okay, now they had a chance. They were limping, but they were still alive. Some insects can bite, after all.
Morgan Song

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Re: Chapter 05: The Battle of the Apertures [ Day 06 | 1005 hrs. ]
Reply #52
[ Lieutenant Vanya | Bridge | Deck 01 | Vector: Combined | USS Theurgy ]

Vanya wrenched the axe free of the fallen foe and scanned the bridge for threat. Others had moved to and engaged the other Borg as she fended the one off of Natalie. A curt nod and a flick of her wrist shed the blood and fluids from the blade of the Romulan axe, splattering the floor. The blade gleamed in the glare of the emergency lighting.

A last glance at the fallen Borg to ensure the thing wasn't going to get back up. The deck shuttered and her dark green eyes came up. Only now after the initial melee was over did her systems elevate damage reports to primary awareness. Looking down she'd see that she hadn't come out of the confrontation unscathed. That saw-tool-thing on the Tactical Drone's cybernetic appendage had caught her in the upper right arm, cutting her from shoulder to elbow in a long line. Dark green Romulan blood seeped from the wound but if one looked close they'd see dark gleaming duranium under the sliced flesh. A shake of her head and she rotated the arm. The bioflesh sheath had been cut but the duranium endoskeletal structure was functioning at normal performance parameters. 

As she assessed herself the systems ramped down from the fire-walled performance levels they'd been at during the combat. Returning to something more resembling every day sort of operating status. Well every day operating status while in the middle of a massive combat with a Borg Cube.

A glance went to the XO and Vanya raised the axe saluting her. Then gave a nod and a wink. Turning she strode back towards the science station. Metallic clicks and whirrs faded into the background of the over all noise on the bridge as the Romulan axe's blade refolded itself into the haft and Vanya raised the haft up and over her shoulder. Returning it to it's sheath.

Stepping back to the Science grotto she bent and scooped a phaser off the deck. Checking it she nodded and slipped it back into Okafor's holster. "Keep this close Lieutenant. You may have future need of it" Pausing she assessed his head wound. Reaching past him she felt under the console and her hand gripped the handle of a med kit. Pulling it out she flicked it open. Looking through it she gripped a dermal regenerator. Flicking it on she started to pass it over his wound. She was no doctor but she had the standard first aid courses that every officer was required to take as well as the Bridge Certifications which were a step up.

Dark green blood dripped down to splatter the dark gray shoulder of Okafor's uniform as she saw to his wound. He would need to visit a real doctor if the ship survived the encounter. Vanya was just trying to keep the wound from bleeding all in his eyes and keep him on the deck and fighting. A few passes of the regenerator and she raised pointed brows. "Still with us Tyreke?? We need you. You ready to show these cybernetic horrors why they don't mess with Sci-Division??" 
Lieutenant Vanya - Science Officer - Zoology/XenoZoology

Re: Chapter 05: The Battle of the Apertures [ Day 06 | 1005 hrs. ]
Reply #53
[ Lt Cmdr Vael Kaeris | Bridge | Deck 01 | Vector 1 | USS Theurgy ]

Vael gave the borg only a passing moment of attention as they appeared on the screen, the patchwork cube dominating the battlefield as they tended to do, monolithic, inelegant.  They were offensive on so many levels, particularly to Vael.  As a heterogeneous species that sought to advance themselves through slapdash assimilation and incorporation of technologies, they were repulsive academically, standing in stark contrast to his belief that biology alone could improve and adapt beyond the harsh metallic confines.

But there was something more.  His own species, appearances aside, were insectoid to a degree, arising out of their own primitive hive mentality to become a small but indisputable power in the quadrant that had been able to stand alone on a single world, independent of even the mighty Federation for ages.  Only recent events and conflicts had prompted them to hesitantly set aside that isolationism -- and from what he had heard growing up, the early interactions between his people and StarFleet had very nearly resulted in disaster. This... borg hive was, to a bactrican, as much an insult as a ship of homo neanderthalensis might be to humans.

Casting an appraising glance across the PADD in his hand, his lips thinned slightly.  Plans were progressing apace on the ship but he had to admit to some disappointment that the Cayuga had not yet succeeded in taking out some of the apertures.  Admittedly, their task was complicated by the geometric monstrosity that stood in their way, a monstrosity that had turned its attention to the Theurgy in a moment's breadth.

A deluge of weapons fire from the enemy rocked the ship.  All around him, chaos rang out as the bridge crew relayed the various failures, the collapse of their shield grids and the imminent incoming boarders.  On queue, or so it seemed, a series of green transporter signatures flooded the bridge, several near the tactical table where Ducote and some others had been coordinating, but even as the drones focused on their potential targets, the romulan, Vanya, was upon them, seemingly tearing one apart with her bear hands -- a feat that prompted an undisguised raising of Vael's eyebrow.  Something to look into at another point, he assured himself.

Another conflict near the front of the bridge had already resulted in the attempted assimilation and subsequent death of one of the crew, and Lt. Okafor himself seemed far worse for wear from the initial engagement, although Vael's hasty assessment determined that it wasn't anything a medkit and three weeks of significant rest and relaxation wouldn't overcome.  Still, it was a compromise in their overall efficacy.  Fortunately, the romulan was able to tend to his more immediate needs with a dermal regenerator.

"I have taken the liberty of designing a..." he paused, considering the best way to describe the device so as to minimize the amount of explanation required, "Borg jamming device.  Small, designed to function like chaff that can be scattered through the debris field.  They are intended to create a local disruption in borg communications similar to a neurotoxin.  It won't affect the cube, but may limit its communications with any remotely deployed drones until they adapt."

Transferring the data to the local science stations, he continued, "They can be replicated and deployed without an active targeting lock and they are small enough that they should ostensibly blend in with the background debris until activated.  If we start deployment now, it may give us a few critical seconds to focus on the apertures."

Pointing to the screen, he continued.  "Twenty would be the bare minimum, scattered in these areas, but the more we can deploy, the better.    The borg have the advantage of strength and numbers.  We need to control the field."
  • Last Edit: February 13, 2019, 04:13:21 PM by steelphoenix

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Re: Chapter 05: The Battle of the Apertures [ Day 06 | 1005 hrs. ]
Reply #54
[ Lt. JG Derik Veradin | Main Bridge | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @All

"Helm! Cycle through any Omega, Lambada and Omega-series of evasive manoeuvres while we make our way around the debris field. We need to last, to survive, so that we can open and then destroy that aperture. Where the Cayuga may have failed so far, we will not. Engage!"

Ah Hell. Here we go.

"Aye Captain." Derik's turned back in his chair, queuing up a random sequence to try and keep the Borg from acquiring and maintain a weapons lock. Before he could even initiate the sequence, a volley of torpedoes impacted their shields.

"Damn it!" Derik cursed to himself. He did his best to use the debris field just as the Cayuga was doing, as a shield. It was.....less than successful. Another salvo impacted the shields before the Theurgy slipped behind one of the larger fragments.

"Captain! The third shield grid failed! I am reading Borg signatures aboard already! They a..." Carla Abner tried to call out.


Chills ran down Veradin's spine. Those words, those dreaded words, had preceded many a Borg massacre. It was like their mantra, spoken just before great tragedy befell any who were unlucky enough to catch their attention.

He flexed his hands, breaking the ice in his veins. Now was not the time to lose his nerve. Soft light reflected off the bulkheads in front of him, their glimmer announcing uninvited arrivals. He turned, seeing the drones finish materializing. However, seeing the three intruders dealt with so efficiently was comforting.
As comfortable as anyone could be engaging the Borg. He left the drones to his crewmates. He had larger concerns.

The order came to duck into outer debris field, Veradin finding a large enough opening to move in. Despite the change, the Borg's weapons were still hitting too close for comfort. "Omega series ineffective. Switching to Lambada patterns." The pattern change took only moments, Derik winced as fragments bounced off their hull anew. He prayed Thea woudnt be too upset when she saw herself again.

Dodging the incoming fire was rough. If it weren't for the all the wreckage, they'd be gone already. That being said all the explosions were sending even more debris hurtling towards the ship.
  • Last Edit: February 16, 2019, 02:41:20 AM by Argyros
Lt. JG Derik Veradin
Acting Chief CONN Officer, USS Theurgy
"Amor est vitae essentia."

Re: Chapter 05: The Battle of the Apertures [ Day 06 | 1005 hrs. ]
Reply #55
[Lt. Cmdr. Natalie Stark, Executive Officer & Ens. Faye Lintah Eloi-Danvers, Communications | Bridge | Deck 01 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy ]Attn: @Arista @Auctor Lucan @Top Hat @Masorin @CanadianVet @chXinya @The Ostrich @Hastata-Nerada 

They both had their orders, and for the moment, as the battle was engaged, both were in coordination mode, linking up their ship with other forces out on the battlefield. Natalie kept her face impassive, resisting the urge toward any resentment. The cold voice of the Borg robbed that way in any case. Resistance, they told her, was futile. And every Federation Encounter on a major scale had shown that no, it wasn't quite futile. It was just horrifically costly.

While Nat turned back to the command table, Faye was already busy at Communications' pushing aside thoughts of a nurse she loved and a crew on edge, to focus on her task. There would be multiple channels going out of the ship and she had her orders. On her console was a series of quick notes from Vivian Martin and the science team on the bridge, just enough so that she could follow what it was she needed to get.  Her fingers danced fast - Getting too good at this - and the hail went out. "USS Theurgy calling USS Cayu - " was as far as she got before the first round of torpedoes hit.  The world rocked around her, sending her stomach up into her throat.

"Damn!" Natalie shouted out, bending over the table slightly. She was just pulling up a visual of the Allegiant as it was setting out, readying a comm channel. She had to reset it now that -   that was when the  second torpedo barrage hit, sending the shields crashing down and alarms thundering. The cold voice of the Collective made itself known:


Chills ran down the spine of the collected crew of the USS Theurgy. Faye stiffened in her seat, while Natalie was forcing herself to stand back up straight.  Something exploded above the Comm station - an ODS conduit? Showering Faye with sparks that blinded her to the sudden green swirls filling the bridge. But the drones....she felt them. She felt them, and she was afraid. The endless maw of the Collective beckoned like a harbinger in the dark, clawing and eternal. There was no mind. There were infinite minds.

She screamed a silent scream, but by the time it finished echoing between her ears, it was over, on the bridge.

Lt. Cmdr. Stark bucked into the table again, feeling, more than seeing, what had just arrived around her. She pushed up and back, turning to stare at it. A drone. A large drone - male, she thought - one of three, turning directly to her. Oh, there were others around, but Natalie knew it was her that the thing had locked onto. All the training in the world, all the holodeck simulations, the lectures in classes from those that had survived....none of it truly prepared someone for the moment they faced the walking nightmare that was a Borg Drone.

And she had thought those damned plants were bad.

It spun toward her, having beamed in less than half a meter away, drill whirring in the sound of the red alert, hand extending, tubes arching up out of it....Except, there wasn't a hand any more. There was a wet splash of liquid gore that coated her shirt. There was the fetid smell of half dead blood.

There was Vanya.

Like an avenging angel out of myth she swung her ax, so fast that Natalie only registered it after it had happened. She;'d barely had time to step back ,to reach from the phaser that she and all the others on the bridge were armed with. The drone spun, and Vanya parried. Even knowing the woman could take it, seeing the saw-blade score a hit was hard to watch. Natalie paled, and reached for the phaser, but by the time she got it out of her holster, her friend was wrenching the drones neck around.

This was a harsh reminder that Vanya had been programmed, long ago, to be an effective spy and killing machine. Here and now, this was what her best friend was. Her oldest friend in the fleet, was every bit as capable as her designers had hoped. And so, so much more. Thank God she's on my side she thought, managing a shaky smile.

After all that, they didn't say a word to each other. Vanya gave a little salute, and a cheeky wink that brought a smile to Natalie's face. It felt so alien in the moment that she had to shake it off physically, but the haunted look of near assimilation was gone. And Vanya would have seen the smile, just for her.

It had been so consuming that she missed the mess at Tactical. It would come as a shock later when she registered that Leon Marquez was no longer on the bridge. Or the ship. Except as scattered particles. She shared that nod with Vanya, expressing more in that look than she could in words, and turned back, sucking in air as the noise around her returned.

Ens. Eloi-Danvers had noticed. She hadn't watched, but she had felt. Felt the agony of assimilation start ot rip through Leon Marquez. The desperation and struggle, the way he was losing. And then the moment of satisfaction, before there was nothing else left. It bleed away, replaced by the grim satisfaction of a job done, gruesome though it was, of Martin (Salem). Of Duty.


Two hails went out, one after the other, from different parts of the bridge.

"Allegiant" Natalie had called, "If you haven't figured it out already, you are a go. Ms. Natauna I don't care if you have to beam over there and  tan Martoks hide, you get him on our side." A distant part of her mind was horrified at the words she'd spoken about the distinguished Chancellor of the Klingon Empire. "God Speed."

On her heels was Faye, her hair astray, cheeks red from the shower of sparks, staring a her console as the environmental systems swept the smoke away. Her voice was a bit more raspy, where Stark's was full of spit and fury. "Repeat, this is the USS Theurgy, calling USS Cayuga. We are going to attempt a run to open the apature. Please transfer any and all relevant data." And as she spoke, she opened a data-link, patching in Martin (Vivian) and her team. "Commander  Martin, prepare for data dump from Cayuga" she said, hoping it would come through. Hoping they weren't all dead.

In the distant part of her mind, she reached out, trying to find the mental presence, decks below, of the one person here that mattered most to her, to see if that mind was still there, and not swept away into the Collective. Because she had felt others go.

Back on the holotable, Natalie looked up, watching as the display zoomed out to take in more of the debris field. She cocked her head to one side, listening to the voice of Commander Trent over the internal communications network. She didn't have much time to process his words - good though they were - because movement on the holo display tore her focus away. She completely missed the revelations about the cloak, and the debate going on at Sciences.

Something had just shifted....there!

"Captain! Two Vorcha-class cruisers inbound on pursuit vector bearing 199.3!" She warned Wenn, and then reached out and manipulated the holograms, pulling the focus in on those ships. "No Klingon life signs remain. Designate cruisers as Borg. Tactical! Execute Attack Pattern Sierra-seven on Borg Vorcha's.".
  • Last Edit: February 14, 2019, 03:19:31 AM by Brutus
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Re: Chapter 05: The Battle of the Apertures [ Day 06 | 1005 hrs. ]
Reply #56
[ LtCmdr Vivian Martin | Main Bridge | USS Theurgy ]


Everything had gone to hell. The ship had taken a hammering from the Borg torpedoes, which had quickly overwhelmed their shield grid. Then the dreaded welcome of the collective had echoed across the bridge, and mere seconds later the shit had hit the fan as a trio of drones beamed aboard.

As chaos erupted across the bridge Vivian hunkered down over her console trying to work as energy beams and bolts flew across the bridge. She saw Vanya bounding across the bridge to engage the Borg, somehow the Romulan woman had acquired an axe, and was using it to great effect. As her fingers raced across her console the chaos continued to reign, and Vivian heard Okafor crying out behind her, something had happened, but she was too busy to spare the man more than a passing glance. He seemed to be fine, so she ignored him and returned her focus to the streams of data flowing across her screen. She was vaguely aware of Vanya's return, and noticed the Romulan tending to Okafor, perhaps Vivian hadn't checked as closely as she should have.

It was now that she heard a call from Ensign Eloi-Danvers across the bridge "Commander  Martin, prepare for data dump from Cayuga"

"We're ready when they are Ensign" She called back, then turned her attention to her nearby subordinates. "Up on your feet lieutenants, the Cayuga will be transmitting any moment now, I'm going to need your assistance in sorting the information when it comes through. Be prepared to tune the sensor array to the correct frequency for the soliton waves to open the appetures. Kaeris, do what you must. Get your chaff out there are quickly as you can." Even as she spoke a small notification appeared, alerting her of the incoming data dump. "Let's get to work people!"
  • Last Edit: February 15, 2019, 10:15:28 AM by The Ostrich

Re: Chapter 05: The Battle of the Apertures [ Day 06 | 1005 hrs. ]
Reply #57
[ Captain Anya Ziegler |  Bridge | Deck 1 | USS Cayuga ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan, @Brutus , @Doc M. , Anyone else.

Ziegler cursed quietly, inaudible to the rest of the bridge over the sounds of the battle. Once again, the last run at the apertures had failed. They were running out of variations of the frequency to try. Kaeris hadn't been overly confident with his initial calculations and now the Captain understood why. Rather than venting her frustration at an absent officer, she hoped that they eventually could get it right and not have wasted their lives in a fruitless fight.

The Cayuga creaked and groaned under the fast manoeuvres that Dumral inputted into the helm as fast as she could. The Cardassian woman was a great pilot and vastly skilled. Anya just hoped that after everything, the ship wouldn't shake itself apart under the strain.

"I-Incoming torpedoes!" Jance Davron, the latest Chief Tactical officer, called out above the din. His hands shaking as they moved across the controls. Obviously, he was trying to activate appropriate defences but was struggling. "Brace for impact!"

Ziegler's hands flew to the armrests of her command chair. Gripping tightly, Anya could feel the metal frame through the cushioning of the seat and closed her eyes, scrunching up her face, waiting for the hit. After a few seconds, nothing happened. The ship felt the same, no loud noises of explosions against the shield, nor the whine as the inertial dampeners strained to keep them seated. Cautiously, she opened her eyes and glanced over at the tactical officer

"Torpedoes destroyed captain, a fighter saved us. Transponder reads 'Wolf-07'." The young man readied his displays as he attempted to find a new firing arc on the Borg. Suddenly, he looked up and across towards his captain. "Wolf 7 is out of control. She's on a collision course!"

"Tractor beam!" Anya barked back, watching as the viewscreen flicked orientation to show the spinning ship. "Halt that fighter and recover it. The pilot gave us a second chance."

"Aye. Activating beam now." Davron responded and on the viewscreen, a pulse of blue light enveloped the fighter, bringing the rotation to a sharp stop.

Before any other recovery action could take place, the bridge was hit with an almighty sound. The sound of wrenching metal as deck plating ruptured under the cacophony of an explosion; Almost immediately, billowing smoke started to fill the bridge as green flames licked up from the breach. An EPS conduit had burst firing ignited plasma into the air.

Luckily no one had been stood over it, and for that Anya was truly thankful. As officers rushed to pull fire extinguishing equipment from behind hidden panels. Ziegler coughed, trying to breathe as the air became increasingly hot and smoky.  Stepping out of her chair, Anya moved closer to the viewscreen, so to see what was happening as the visibility in the smoke was becoming harder. From the operations seat, the officer called out the damage.

"Major EPS breaches across four decks." The officer coughed and spluttered, trying to finish their announcement. "Damage reports coming in now. Tractor beam and transporters down. Weapons, shields, propulsion, communication and life support still active. Captain, we've got a lot of wounded."

Sure enough, the fighter that had saved Cayuga and then had to be helped itself now hung frozen in space. The tractor beam had failed before managing to pull it into the shuttle bay and there was nothing else they could do to save the brave pilot. With a silent prayer, Ziegler had to push that Lone wolf from her mind. She wasn't responsible for them anymore, she had to save the crew she could.

"Get damage control to seal those EPS conduits. We need power back and co-ordinate injury reports with Sickbay. We need to-" Anya's orders were interrupted by the operations officer.

"Incoming hail from Theurgy. Audio only"

With a distinct crackle, the communication came through. Transfer all data regarding the apertures. Theurgy was taking up the mantle of opening them. Anya wished she could say she was relieved.

"Science..." Ziegler called as the fires were put out and the air scrubbers began to suck the smoke from the command centre of the Cayuga. "Send them everything we've got."
  • Last Edit: February 16, 2019, 10:50:05 AM by Arista

Re: Chapter 05: The Battle of the Apertures [ Day 06 | 1005 hrs. ]
Reply #58
"Look to my coming, at first light, on the fifth day. At dawn, look to the East."
- Gandalf, Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King

[ Ens. Cameron Henshaw | Main Bridge | Deck 01 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan, @Brutus, @Nolan, @Masorin, @FollowTomorrow, @chXinya, @BZ, @Top Hat, @Numen, @The Ostrich, @Argyros, @Cosmos, @Kinvarus & @Hastata-Nerada
Every now and then Cameron would risk diverting her attentions to the bridge around her. Just to make sure there weren't any new Borg drones showing up. But she was soon absorbed in the events unfolding between the Allegiant, the surviving Klingons, the Cayuga, and all the Lone Wolves out there. And her first cry came when she saw the Reaver jump out of warp. The main sensor station would have registered it sooner, but she still called out, "Captain! It's the Cinsaj. It's dropped out of warp!" She turned to look at her tactical read, and updated, "It's moving to engage the Borg Cube...THEY'RE SHIELDS ARE DOWN! Detecting multiple successful warhead impacts! Vulnerabilities opening up in sections thirteen-through-thirty-five on the cube's western facing."

The bridge could pick up on Devyrie's communique to them and the fighters, but she was having trouble receiving any replies or response. "Computer, initiate response to the Cinsaj, rotate hailing frequency and boost transmission, update troubleshoot package." She was going to see if the ship's systems could update and fix the problem with the Reaver's communications system. Having an idea, she darted over to Vivian's station and whispered to the tall woman, "Commander," she said, "could you try using a burst of radion from the main deflectors to essentially sneak our hailing system through whatever is blocking us from replying to the Cinsaj?"

Once she got her response, she left Vivian to do what she had to do, and the young Yeoman returned to her own station, and began to update the flight pattern for the Wolves, and the Allegiant. She marked out the routes to get to the Borg cube the fastest, having heard Thomas' declaration of intent and his request for help, she spoke as she continued painting the safest and fastest path for them all. Every single ship. "Ops to Razor, acknowledged," she clipped off succinctly, "adjust your course twenty degrees due north, north, east. Ops to Allegiant and all flights, Cinsaj too if you can hear, recommended flight paths in your Tactical. Engage Attack Pattern Alpha. Angel, divert from your path to vector two-two-mark-four, watch for debris."

Her eyes shifted to a warning on her tactical, but she continued to guide the Wolves as best as she could, "Salvo, move to vector seven-nine-one-mark-zero, then engage thrust ten kilometers and initiate recommended attack pattern at your leisure. Good hunting, everyone."

There was a small ship approaching at warp. She couldn't be certain what it was. "We have incoming, unknown vessel."

And it was at this time her mind went of all things to Silim Parnak. She hoped the Cardassian was all right. There were Borg drones boarding the ship. How much more could their ship take?

  • Last Edit: February 16, 2019, 07:00:14 PM by Triage

Re: Chapter 05: The Battle of the Apertures [ Day 06 | 1005 hrs. ]
Reply #59
[ High Chancellor Martok, son of Urthog | Bridge | Negh'Var battleship IKS Negh'Var | Azure Nebula ] Attn: All
Martok cut the feed from the ship called 'Allegiant', and addressed his bridge crew. "For the honour of the Empire! wo' batlhvaD!"

The IKS Negh'Var had been caught in a tractor beam from the Borg cube, and their shields were failing. His new weapons officer, who had replaced N'Garen, had already alerted all the closest Klingon ships to try and protect the Chancellor - to have the beam emitter destroyed - but Martok already knew that their disruptors and photon torpedoes would be ineffective. For the past hour, they had modulated their weapons in ways dating back as far as their records could take them, and there were only so many options for their cannons. Martok had already resigned to the fate of the Negh'Var, which would either be destroyed outright once the shields failed or become boarded again. Regardless the outcome, there would be songs sung - somewhere - about this battle, fought at the border of the Empire.

Sealed aft sections of the ship already held assimilated crew. There simply hadn't been any time to deal with the bodies yet. This second time, if they would come aboard, Martok held little hope to be able to repel the drones. Their disruptors had failed, and the drones were not only versatile up close, they also had forcefield that would - eventually - adapt to their blades as well. Of this, he was certain.

So, when the field percentage dropped rapidly on the screen, and there was naught to be done, Martok closed his remaining eye briefly, readying himself for whatever came next.

What happened... was unexpected.

"Chancellor!" came the call from behind him, and the deck below Martok's feet rocked, "we're free! Our ships penetrated the cube's shields! Something happened to it!"

Martok bared his teeth in a grimace that could almost be considered a smile. "Whatever it was, don't tarry. Smite that thing with everything we have left!" He stepped through the thick smoke of the bridge and seated himself anew in his chair, opening a comm link to the present and incoming ships. "This is Martok. All ships, concentrate fire on the Borg cube now! Fire everything!"

Once the Negh'Var had joined the battle effort, peeling away the outer hull of the cube in fiery chunks of metal, Martok turned his eye towards the Theurgy, the words of Zyrao Natauna coming back to him. He made a low sound in his throat, not keen on admitting fault, but if that ship was innocent of all that Starfleet Command claimed, and wasn't even to blame for Drex's death, then it meant that N'Garen had been one of those... Infested. His bridge crew had things well in hand, shouting back and forth, so Martok issued the hail to the Theurgy himself.

Once the hail came through, visually or merely by sound, he spoke. "I'd rather say this to Ives' face, but I have spoken with Zyrao Natauna, and I have witnessed this... parasitic threat with my own eyes. The Klingon Empire will be your ally... yet further discussions must wait. There are Borg to kill, and an invasion to repel... but the true enemy will be known. Martok out."

After he cut the feed, a simple message tapped into his armrest signalled the Klingon fleet that the Theurgy was an ally. No more had he sent it, however, before the tide of the battle turned again.

"The cube has adapted!"

[ The Borg Queen | Cube M-582 | Azure Nebula ] Attn: All
Watching the puny ships in the debris field around her, the Queen wasn't smiling any more.

One of her drones had uploaded intel that had been laced with a sophisticated program that disrupted core functions of the cube - corrupting the algorithms of the adaptive shield matrix of both the cube as well as the personal force fields of her drones. That, in itself, was a negligible disruption, since it was quite temporary. Within seconds the program was isolated, and the affected algorithms were purged and reinstalled. The concern was the timing of this slight inconvenience, since it allowed the circulating vessels of Klingon origin as well as the Federation's crafts to compromise the outer sections of her cube.

The Queen was not overly concerned, of course, since Cube M-582 - just like all of her cubes - could remain functional even if 80% of it was rendered inoperable. This, due to the decentralised and redundant nature of its key systems, where there were hidden tiers of tactical systems below the ones lost. Whatever components of the inner layers that were damaged, they could quickly be repaired. Therefore, she patiently, methodically, dealt with the threat in her systems, and did not let the irritation over the setback get to her. It was, perhaps, a remnant trait of her original species, before the Royal Protocol. When her name had been T´Less.

When her shield matrix had been restored, her retaliation... was immediate.

The Klingon ships could do the cube no more harm. Nor could the fighter craft or the Theurgy. Phaser fire and disruptors were moot to her defences. Moreover, they were in the open, firing against her, with no debris in the way. She was the Borg, and they would all answer to her. She raised her hand slowly at her sides, and disruptor beams of her own riddled the closest Klingon ships. Some of them were so damaged already they disintegrated at the first shot. Others were rendered defenceless, crashing into the debris field by the inertia of her blasts. Then, for the more distant targets, she fired gravimetric torpedoes from all sides - the succession of ordnance piercing through the debris in search for warp signatures.

The IKS Negh'Var, as species 5008 called it, lost a section of of its aft fuselage and a portion of its starboard side. The Theurgy... however, was momentarily gone from her sensors. The Borg had assimilated the technology of cloaking devices from many species, so it was apparent what might have happened. Had her gravimetric torpedoes been sent to target her drones aboard the Federation starship, she would have hit it, but as it were, the seven torpedoes passed it by. Oddly enough, the Theurgy was only gone for a couple of moments... It reappeared, and she could target it once more.

It was, of course, merely a brief delay. Her shield matrix protected the reduced mass of Cube M-582 against both the Federation crafts and the Klingons, and it was only a matter of time before they were all destroyed or assimilated. The cube would eventually be repaired, and all the resistance they had shown would - as always - prove futile.

She slowly turned her head with the movement of the Theurgy, and pelted her with new torpedoes. One fired each second, striking either debris or its shields. The high yield of her ordnance penetrated those shields eventually, and she saw how one of the nacelles gave out, leaving a trail of plasma behind it. Then, one of the ventral nacelles also began to bleed, and she smiled, seeing how the ship tried in vain to escape her attention. With the Klingon fleet in shambles, it was only the two Federation ships left posing any negligible threat to her invasion of the Alpha and Beta Quadrants.

The Queen even saw them on the bridge, through the cortical implant of a regenerating drone. From the drone's prone position, she saw a tall, dark-skinned humanoid in command, and the feeble efforts of the bridge crew. They were trying to reach the sealed aperture. That much was plain, but it would be too late. They had no means to open it. Much less destroy it. She could almost admire their resolve. Then again, it could just be the abject terror. A primitive response. When they were drones, they would be more perfect. Well above such base instincts.

A sensor reading spiked, diverting her attention. She turned her head towards it. She saw it there, suddenly having appeared.

A white ship, larger than most the Collective had encountered. A smile creased the corners of her black eyes, for she saw not just an unidentified species, yet catalogued. She saw advanced technology, more sophisticated than most encountered. But what truly piqued her interest... was something which she had sought for centuries. She stopped firing against the damaged Theurgy and Cayuga, her attention diverted entirely towards it.

At last, within my grasp. The thought came when she sensed it there, at the head of the ship.


She sent the ship her greeting when she hailed it, her remaining drones speaking as one. She heard it too, echoing within the cube.



OOC: You all have 7 days to post, meaning that the deadline is the 23rd of February. In your upcoming posts, you need to illustrate the following sequence: A) Martok's hail, instilling hope of the Klingon Empire being the Theurgy's ally, at long last. B) The cube being damaged by the onslaught of weapons fire from the Klingon fleet, the Theurgy and its small crafts. C) When the adaptive shield matrix goes back online, and the Queen retaliates, damaging two of the Theurgy's nacelles and causing more damage to the Cayuga. And then, finally, D) The immediate reaction when the ship behind the [Show/Hide] button above drops out of transwarp. Besides this sequence of events, which lasts for 1 minute In-Character, here are also Battle Objectives to add during and after that minute! Have a look! [Show/Hide]

Re: Chapter 05: The Battle of the Apertures [ Day 06 | 1005 hrs. ]
Reply #60
[Captain Wenn Cinn & Selena Ravenholm | Main Bridge | Deck 01 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy]

Trying not to grip the arms of the Captain's Chair hard enough to snap them off, Captain Wenn watched the battle continue to unfold around him.  The reports he needed started to come in, the delay chalked up to interference from invading drones.  The cloak was ready, Trent's virus was giving the Borg a nasty cold (hopefully), said drones were contained or dead, science was coordinating with the Cayuga, and the assimilated Klingon ships were being held off.  There was one ship that was the Bajoran's main concern though.  Snared by a tractor beam, the Negh'Var had made no attempt to respond to the Allegiant, at least none that they'd reported back.  It was still an open question on where Martok stood towards the Theurgy,

Something changed with the Borg, and Martok was the first to notice it.  Without warning every Klingon weapon unloaded onto the cube, tearing massive chunks out of the outer hull in seconds.  On the Theurgy's bridge, Selena Ravenholm looked up from her console with surprise, helping Faye coordinate communications between the ship and her support craft while also spearheading their cyber-defenses.  "Captain, there's an incoming message from Chancellor Martok himself."  Putting it on speakers without being told, Martok's booming declaration of allegiance lifted a weight off of Cinn's chest.  The channel closed before he could respond, but the Borg didn't give him a chance anyway.

"They've adapted!" someone shouted, but Cinn couldn't tell who as he was already reacting.  "Cloak the ship now!" he ordered Ops, praying he was in time.  If the Borg had adapted to their weapons and the virus this fast there was only one thing that would follow.  The lights dimmed and the ship's chorus of computer sounds faded to almost nothing as power was redirected to the Reman device nestled in engineering.  It was a gamble, if there were any active drones that had eluded them then the Borg could use their collective network to track them and target the ship that way.  But the Prophets were with them this time, as the Queen enacted her vengeance on the fleet.  It was a horrific sight, Klingon ships were exploding in droves.  "Get us to the next aperture, fast." he told Veradin.  There was no time to spare.

They didn't get far though.  Someone near the engineering console spat out a curse, the only warning the Bridge got.  The lights died completely for a moment before coming back to full, but the systems didn't power up with the same speed as the lights.  Cinn's stomach dropped to the deck when that happened, he already knew what the next line was going to be.  "We've lost the cloak!"  The torpedoes were only seconds behind.  Impact after impact rattled the ship throwing people everywhere.  Cinn gripped the chair so hard his dark knuckles turned white, but he couldn't hold it.  A massive explosion somewhere in the aft pitched the ship hard and the Bajoran was thrown to the deck.  A second one followed soon after, almost righting their orientation but threw Cinn into the air.  That flight was a bit short though, and the way his head was spinning all he could see was the grey and white pillar holding him up out of the corner of his eye.

Over at the communications console, Selena managed to hold on thanks to her prosthetics, but working was impossible under this barrage.  After it finally let up (why would it let up?) she looked down to find her console a mash of hash.  Working to reboot it, Selena looked to Cinn to see what he wanted to do first, and her eyes went wide in horror.  The drone that killed Abner at the Engineering station was back on its feet and the Bajoran had somehow managed to be leaning against it.  The phaser burns on the armor had the cybernetics-riddled guts of the drone on full display, but it didn't seem to care.  Already reaching out with its good arm, Selena had no time to think.  Her feet kicked against the bulkhead at the proper angle and with all the force she could muster.  Flying across the Bridge her back slammed into the drone knocking all three of them to the deck in a heap.  Grabbing the good arm, Selena wrenched, doing everything she can to keep it away from the two of them.  "A little help here?"

As soon as the drone was dispatched for good, Tactical called out the arrival of a new ship.  Selena immediately assumed that it dropped out of warp while they were preoccupied with getting their asses kicked and couldn't help but make a mental wish.  Enterprise, Enterprise, Enterprise, come on be the Enterprise...  It wasn't though.  And it was the last ship she expected to see.
  • Last Edit: February 16, 2019, 05:51:40 AM by chXinya

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Re: Chapter 05: The Battle of the Apertures [ Day 06 | 1005 hrs. ]
Reply #61
[ Lt Evoras | Main Bridge | Deck 01 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy | Lasting Damage ] attn: @Auctor Lucan @Masorin @chXinya @Brutus @Triage et al

"Captain! Two Vorcha-class cruisers inbound on pursuit vector bearing 199.3!"

"Lieutenant Martin, the stern battery is yours. Disable those ships," Evoras said, focusing on the primary threat on their starboard flank. Their port forequarter was for now left to autonomous operation, obliterating any chunks of debris that strayed into their path before the helm had to deal with it. Their capacitor charge ticked steadily down - probably less than twenty minutes of sustained fire available. Not that it would matter much beyond that either way.

"... Vulnerabilities opening up in sections thirteen-through-thirty-five on the Cube's western facing."

Section 13 will do nicely, Evoras mused, focusing all firepower on that quadrant while they had the window. A torrent of phaser blasts and torpedoes poured into the wounded vessel, carving a bloody chunk out of it while the opportunity presented itself. Secondary explosions blossomed deep within the Borg ship, a satisfying number of lights going out in that volume as a local power distribution node was slagged. The Klingons were enjoying similar success, cheerfully shaving layers from the outside of the colossal ship themselves.

All very impressive-looking - fodder for the songs, I'm sure - but if you could focus your fire, that'd be wonderful.

Martok hailed them, finally having seen sense, but that conversation was for other people. It wasn't relevant to her, except for being able to take the non-assimilated KDF ships off her targeting priority list.

The Vulcan resisted the temptation to check just how operational the Cube was - she knew it wouldn't matter until the thing finally stopped kicking. Assume it was at 100%, and try and obliterate it anyway. Stop when done. As if to emphasise her point, the Cube began swatting KDF ships out of the sky. The spectacle distracted her for an instant - but she realised she wasn't getting the same feedback reports she had been a moment ago. A grim feeling descended. Evoras tested a few new nutations, just to be sure.

"The Cube has adapted. Weapons ineffective," she reported, reducing her output to point defence and course clearance while she searched for an alternative. She considered launching their AM spread now, but Wenn ordered the cloak tested. As it powered up, cannibalising the power generation for most of the ship, the weapons locked out - right as the Cube sent another spread of torpedoes their way. I can't shoot them down. Sreilen-

"Brace!" she called. Needlessly, as it turned out, because the torpedoes failed to maintain lock through the cloak. Which, predictably, failed to last. Never an easy road. The Hermat at the Ops station was cursing - and the Borg began to throw singular torpedoes at them. Small, relativistic targets using the debris for cover... every single one of the Theurgy's point-defence shots went wide or hit an intervening object early. The Borg at least were having similar problems, but they still landed some grievous hits on their warp engines regardless.

It was all Evoras could do to stay in her seat, fingers aching as her vulcanoid strength held her in place. Alarms screamed.

As if our power problems weren't bad enough after using the cloak...

Not unrecoverable, but they still needed time - a resource sorely lacking.

"Launching antimatter spread."

The nebula lit actinic white with annihilations as the Theurgy scattered antimatter at the Cube. Physics didn't much care what your shields were tuned to - any matter touched by its antiparticle would dissolve into gamma rays and regret. What was stopped by shields would still interact with the nebula itself, spreading further whatever AM was left over with the energy imparted by the parts that had met their end. A navigational hazard for the Borg, even if nothing else. But what did get through would be impossible to adapt to - whatever else you could say of the Borg, they were definitely made of matter.

"We have incoming; unknown vessel," Ensign Henshaw reported.

A transwarp signature, unfamiliar. But then the silhouette resolved, dwarfing even the Cube. "The Versant! Target locks attained."
Nator 159:
Ranaan Ducote:

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Re: Chapter 05: The Battle of the Apertures [ Day 06 | 1005 hrs. ]
Reply #62
[ Lieutenant Vanya | Bridge | Science Grotto | Deck 01 | Vector: Combined | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @chXinya @Arista @The Ostrich @Hastata-Nerada

Vanya completed the passes over Okafor's head with the Dermal Regenerator and nodded to herself. He'd likely need to visit sickbay once this was all over for better treatment and scans for a concussion or cranial fracture but he wasn't gushing blood right this second so the Romulan called it good. The Regenerator itself was slapped back into the kit. Kit flipped shut, pivoted and slid back into it's slot under the console.

Vanya's dark green eyes flickered up to the view screen, tracking the happenings there and correlating them with the call out's she heard over the bridge and then down to the science station. Commander Martin called out to prepare for Scientific datadump from the Cayuga and Vanya gave a curt nod. "Aye Commander. On it!"

Things were still happening. Okafor and Martin were in the chairs in the Science grotto now so Vanya was standing at a console. The information from the Cayuga started to come in. Information from -her- team. The Romulan offered a tight smile. She'd been stranded here but her team on the Cayuga were still pressing on. She was proud of them.

Assessment of the information was started. Romulan eyes flickering back and forth rapidly as the information scrolled up the screen at a steady pace. Vanya knew the science team there. She had collected and trained them. Worked with them for some time. So she knew the eccentricities of each officer and crewman in the department. That made her uniquely equipped to correlate the data assess it and seek out flaws. Her Android nature allowed for the rapid ... pardon the wording, assimilation of the data, and internal computation at a rate that exceeded biological norm.

Even as Vanya worked the problem a new flight of Borg-peedos were headed their way and the Vulcan Tac officer  yelled out a Brace! Vanya's left hand reached down and to the side, triggering the extendable crash restraints on both Okafor's and Martian's chairs, her right hand came up and clamped onto one of the overhead grab bars by the station. What her academy roomate had once called "Oh-shit bars" but then the ship cloaked. The lights dimmed the consoles dimmed and the Borg-peedos missed. The console that Vanya had been working dimmed as well but the Android kept working the problem in her head till Ops got power back. Oh wait. No the Cloak had konked out. Well, her console came back on line. That was good.

There! "Commander Martin . I've isolated the problem! Applying corrective measures now!"   She had found the problem deep in one of the computations of the program written for the apertures. It had been coded by one of the Science Department's computer experts. An Edosian whom was quite pleasant to work with but who had a disturbing tendency to use base 30 instead of base 10 in math. Usually this was handled by the computers with out a problem, but sometimes, such as this one, a minute discrepancy could pop up, as it had.

Vanya did the math in her head and her fingers started to punch in the corrections. Time was of the essence and.... Vanya's typing skills were extraordinary. The console let out a high speed string of beeps chirps and warbles as the new computations were being entered.

Then the renewed attack of the Borg scored tremendous hits. Overloading the inertial dampeners to the point that the shock-waves were felt through the ship. Vanya had been feeding in corrections at the console with both hands, dexterous fingers typing like mad. The dark metallic green nailpolish flickering in the emergency lights as she strove to get the corrections input.

The Borg-peedos cared not for one Romulan science officer. In fact, it was their job to make sure she couldn't do hers.  They hit the ship and the deck bucked. Vanya was no longer in one of the Science Grotto's chairs. They were occupied by the flesh and blood members of the team. Nor was she holding the oh-shit bar at that exact moment due to rapid fire input of computational correction. As the impact translated through the ship it flung Vanya violently. She was 6'2"/188cm, and though her Duranium endoskeleton made her more solid than your average girl it didn't make her crazy heavy, at 180lbs/92kg. So, yes, the Android was flung aft. Her body flew a few meters and hit the deck rolling. Dark green blood from the cut on her arm staining the carpet with each complete roll till, WANG!! She hit the leading Starboard side of the tactical station, at floor level.

Had she been biological a deep groan or cry of pain likely would have escaped her. As it was her pain receptors lit up and her body shuddered once. Then a green blood soaked hand slammed down on the deck and she clawed her way to her feet.  The hip length long black hair had been braided and woven up into a 'crown' around her head. Some had come loose and hung down on the left side now. She tried to tuck it behind a pointed ear as she staggered back towards the Science grotto. The impacts and rolling of the ship making the short distance more difficult than normal. Blood was running from her left ear making the gleaming black hair with the green sheen stick to her neck on that side.

"Hostile by the Captain! Respond Forthwith!"
She would respond herself buy Cinn had been flung away from Vanya and she knew she couldn't get there in time.

Getting back to the Science Grotto her hand came up and this time.. grabbed the Oh-shit bar. The other came down and fed in the last few corrections for the Aperture solution and she nodded to Vivian. "Solution entered. Transmitting now." 

She sent the program to Selena."WO Ravenholm, transmit the package to the Cayuga, high priority, Expedite!" 
They needed to make sure both ships had the information in case one of the ships was lost.

Vanya's eyes came up and fixed on the view screen as that large white ship dropped out of warp. A sharp Romulan brow rose and her head tilted slightly to the side.... Well. That's not something you see everyday.
Lieutenant Vanya - Science Officer - Zoology/XenoZoology

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Re: Chapter 05: The Battle of the Apertures [ Day 06 | 1005 hrs. ]
Reply #63
[ Lt JG Nator 159 | Main Bridge | Deck 01 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy ] attn: @Auctor Lucan @chXinya @fiendfall et al

For the last minute or so, hir job had been less about resource allocation and more about chasing Borg malware through their network in conjunction with their cyberneticists. Thankfully there were only a few intrusion points in their grid so far, which made the job of isolating them a little easier. But still, trying to fight an electronic warfare attempt from a species of computer-people riddled with nanotechnology was its own special kind of hell.

On top of that, the reports coming in from their damage control teams scrolled past hir console. They made for grim reading in their own right, too. Behind hir, the gravelly voice of the belligerent newbie called ahead about the cloak being ready. Grief. Just what we need; someone else's technology base married into ours. What could go wr-

Nator sobered as s/he realised just who was going to be responsible for making sure that all worked smoothly. Hir mood turned downright foul when s/he read what they were asking for to power it. Is that a typo? S/he scratched at hir panel with a claw tip. Dead pixel?

"Fuckin'... can't even send an accurate number..." s/he muttered to hirself as another light fixture overloaded in a corner. "What do they think we are? Starbase One?"

"Cloak the ship now!"

Oh, no. Hir hands swept over their expenditures as s/he wondered what to cannibalise first. Shields were obvious, as they couldn't be used under cloak anyway. But it wouldn't be sufficient alone. "Ah, standby, Captain, allocating-"

The cloak activated. One of the engineers below, apparently by coincidence, decided that then was the time. And Nator suddenly very well understood that the projected energy requirement had not been a typo. "Engineering...!" s/he called over to Song, without really knowing what even to ask for. Diverted warp power? Grief. S/he barely even paid attention as the Borg bracketed them with another torpedo volley as it slid by.

S/he swore. S/he didn't know what to do. S/he continued to swear, shuffling systems around as s/he could. It was all useless.

The cloak dropped. Or was turned off. One of the two. Power returned to the ship, though there was a gaping deficit for a second or two while the generators struggled to catch up. An alarm sounded from their short-term reserves - critically low. A few minutes to restore the buffer. Come on, come on, come on...

Fresh hits - on their engines. Klaxons screamed, the superstructure groaned, more flashes of overloading conduits lit the bridge. "They're targeting our nacelles!" s/he called. The inertial dampers barely kept up with the assault; Nator felt hirself sliding out  of hir seat and only by sinking hir claws into the edge of hir panel did s/he stay still. S/he saw reports that damage control were already on the way - good, because there was a rupture in a deuterium line on deck 22 that would wreak pure havoc if it detonated now, not to mention the new hull breaches and mounting casualties.

The half-prosthetic woman at comms called for aid, wrestling in a pile with a regenerating drone and a dark-skinned Bajoran. "A little help here?"

Nator was closest, certainly given how most of the security crew were still picking themselves up from the deck. S/he drew her type-II and vaulted the comms console, kicking the drone's free arm away and planting hir boot on its shoulder as s/he crouched down, fangs bared as s/he punched the muzzle of the phaser repeatedly into the drone's teeth while making sure there was clear space behind its head and not, say, an officer's leg or something.

Crack. Crack. Crunch. Nator winced, but shoved the barrel of the pistol into the thing's mouth - inside the boundary of any adapted force field it might care to project - and pressed the firing stud. An orange beam speared through its spine and into the deck behind the drone as the stench of charred necrotising flesh reached hir nostrils. A couple of the drone's circuits sparked, thin white smoke rising, before it went still again.

Knees flexing to keep hir level as the ship shuddered again under a new barrage, s/he hauled the enemy off hir colleagues. "Any injuries?" s/he asked, offering a hand to help them up.

"The Versant!" called Tactical.

The Hermat said something untranslatable, hurrying back to hir station, and wondering what exactly it had been that s/he'd done to deserve the last few months of hir life.

ooc: AL wanted me to clarify that the cloak was activated by F'Rell and deactivated by Samala quite without Nator's input. I can't image it having gone any better with the resident amnesiac in charge, though.
Nator 159:
Ranaan Ducote: