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CHAPTER 02: Hidden Assets [Second Day]

CHAPTER 02: Hidden Assets

[ USS Theurgy | Cargo Bay 04 | 0930 hrs. | 2 Days Post Mortem Arcorn Neotin ] Attn: Brutus & Gentleman

Arms folded underneath her breasts, Jien Ives looked out over the febrile activity in the chosen Cargo Bay.

Operations personnel were stacking metallic crates in the dim light and setting up assembly lines along the walls. The Theurgy was still in majority powered down, so the need for a lighting rig driven by power-cells had been paramount for the personnel to make this happen. Had they not come up with the idea to use three support beams welded together in a triangle and wire it with lighting armature, Commander Stark's most trusted people would have had to follow Lt. Cooper's exact and uncompromising instructions in nigh complete darkness. Given what they were handling, and more importantly, what they were putting together, it would not have been very... humane to let them work under those conditions. Raising her oaken brown eyes, Jien followed the gradual ascension of the rig towards the dark ceiling - the lights already lit and making the shadows in the bay dance... until they were devoured by blight luminescence.

Some of Mr. Rennan Cooper's new personnel were there too, overseeing the handling of the crates with the more critical components. Red-collared and weary, both about the material and how to deal with the situation of having Lt. Cooper as their new Chief Tactical Officer, they were trying to do as best as they might - the trigger-pullers forced to act like grease-stained scientists at the turn of a couple of days. Now and then, they cast glances towards Mr. Cooper - standing by Ives' right side - and the looks were betimes as stained as their uniforms.

At Jien's left side stood Lt Cmdr. Stark, who was also overseeing the preparations. The Captain knew that the situation was a threefold difficulty for Natalie, yet she was pleased that none of it showed when the Chief of Operations focused on her work. The human's primary concern, Jien imagined, was the well-being of her crew when tasked with  this particular undertaking. Secondly, there was the fact that Jien herself was there by her side. Namely, because of the unknown truth about what had happened between them during the Niga Incident. The tertiary concern was this very cargo bay in question, since it seemed to haunt her life of late. Not just once, but twice, she'd had to live through unspeakable things there. Once in reality, and secondly, in a dream begotten by a shunned god, or whatever gods may truly be.

Jien knew no details beyond what little Natalie had cared to confide her Captain's report, yet when it came to the flora of Niga, it was safe to say that it was best saved for a session with Counsellor O'Connor. Was the chosen location coincidence? Perhaps, but Jien suspected that her crew had stayed away from there, choosing other places to stack their supplies. Thus, it had been the only Cargo Bay fully available that had its air-lock on the aft side of the ship.

"Any given day... Starfleet would not condone what we are doing here. Yet these are not ordinary times we live in, is it? Our cause may be noble, yet these may - in other hands - be a cowardly way to make war," said Jien in a quiet voice as she looked upon the second rig that was being set up, where the assembled units were to be loaded.  "Provided that there are no accidents, how many can be ready in two days time?"

The question was aimed to them both, where Mr. Cooper knew the challenges of the assembly and Ms. Stark stood for the on-site logistics. Stark may have held the higher rank, yet this had been Cooper's idea to begin with, so Jien turned her unblinking gaze to him first.

OOC: Suggested posting order is that Rennan post first, then Natalie, and then I lead on with forking up this thread in two, where Captain Ives begins teaching Natalie some key martial arts, and also where Thea appears to take Cooper to a Holodeck, where they will meet up with Miles Renard and his Lone Wolves for some Tactical training. We can leave it open as to how long/far we take the training in both threads, since I am prepared to leave both forks to go fade-to-black at some opportune time. At the same time, I am not alien to the idea to follow through with the training scenarios either. It depends on how far we get before we need to focus on Chapter 03 and when all hell breaks loose again!

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #1
Tapping away busily at his tricorder, Mr. Cooper's eyes were intent on its' display. He must have run this one calculation a hundred and twenty times, but he was never satisfied that it was completely correct. As his eyes began to defocus and ache, he looked up and rubbed his temples. Staring across the bay at all of the people at work, he winced as he saw two men carrying a crate stumble. "Hey! Put it down. Put... Okay. Gent... Gently! Alright. Good." he nearly barked at the two, watching as they complied. Snapping his head to two men looking over a parts manifest he whistled sharply. "Rhodes, Patterson. Get over there and help move that crate. One of you on each side." he said, jerking his thumb towards the two agitated men standing on either side of a crate with various warning placards adorning it. As they rushed over to help, Rennan gave half a smile. "Good teamwork, guys. Keep it up, we're on the clock here!"

Looking back to his tricorder, he paid precious little attention to the two women beside of him, too busy with reworking another calculation. Mumbling strings of numbers and letters to himself, he waved his finger in the air as if writing on a blackboard, trying to visualize every single reaction that would take place. He was snapped out of his daze as the captain spoke of this unconventional matter of warfare. Barely audibly, he mumbled to himself, "War is scarcely a pretty thing." Although, as she continued, he chuckled to himself, satisfying his morose sense of humor. "Captain, accidents are something that cannot be afforded at all in this matter. The men and women in this bay cannot possibly understand the gravity of this task. There is no margin for error, and definitely no room for accidents. If I say, 'Tighten bolt A by 1/116 of a turn, holding the spanner with your right hand.' And they grab the spanner with their left, they're off of the crew. Such unyielding faith in and a strict adherence to my exact directions is something that must be afforded to me. But I digress." he said, sharply sucking in a breath. He'd not taken a breath during his entire soapbox performance there, and his head had begun to gently throb.

"In two days' time, working around the clock... Three. Possibly four if I can find an engineer competent enough to train to be a supervisor. Even at that, I want to be here as much as possible. I'm not going to feel comfortable until all of our newly built cargo is fully secured to my liking, the last piece of rigging is torn down and every one of these people is out of here. Even at that, my comfort will be marginal at best. I've run extensive calculations on what could possibly happen should things go wrong, and even in the best case scenario... It's definitely not pretty with these things INSIDE of a starship." he said, folding his arms. "But, since I thought of this, I shouldn't complain. I always think myself into a rough place. The last time I had a brilliant idea, I nearly became 'that ominous stain in the shuttle bay'." Smirking, he half way laughed. "What are your thoughts on the matter, commander?"

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #2
In a word, she was anxious. That described the nasty little crawling sensation on the back of her neck, that caused Natalie to keep glancing over her shoulder, a gesture that could easily be mistaken for concern for her crew's performance. She was well aware of their environment, of what it could mean, of what she should or shouldn't be feeling, being back in that particular cargo bay. Added to it, she was standing next to Jien, whom was interspersed between herself and the new chief Tactical officer (a man she had yet to get a feel for). That doubled the anxiety sharply, two firm reminders of events past she'd rather forget.

Still, she kept her expression cool and collected (or she thought she did at least. They couldn't see her toes curling in her boots, right?) and observed the two groups of officers and enlisted crew scampering about in the cargo bay. True enough she found herself thinking as the captain spoke. Starfleet would certainly look down upon their actions today, but then again, it wouldn't be the first time Starfleet had been forced to bend and stoop low in time of war. The actions of the Dominion War came freshest to her mind. Humanity and its allies were capable of fighting dirty when pressed in to a corner; the foes the Theurgy now faced lacked even that basic Human compulsion to feel regret for playing fast and hard.

Cpt Ives posed her question to the Tactical chief first, so Natalie shifted her stance to watch the sole male in the trio of senior officers. He was well and truly wrapped into his work, and on one hand Natalie could appreciate that. She had been known to address a group in the same manner; head down, glued to a display. It was annoying to be on the other end of it tho. Still, she took his words to heart, processing what he said; even if his mannerisms were a putting? She wasn't quite sure what the word was, and decided it meant she'd just have to get used to him first.

"My thoughts, Lieutenant," she replied calmly, if a tad terse, "is that I dearly hope your bright idea doesn't lead to any of my people, or yours, becoming stains on the cargo bay decking." She sighed and crossed her arms over her chest, looking out at the mixed crews, "Lt. Cooper is right, however. There will need to be constant supervision. My people can keep the supplies coming just fine, and while they are not, perhaps, as accustomed to the Lt's style of detailed authority, they can and will rise to the occasion." She bit the inside of her bottom lip for a moment, sucking it between two teeth.

"I'd err on the side of caution, Captain. Two would be a more realistic output, three hopeful. We might be able to hit that four mark, but we run the risk of burn out. And as Mr. Cooper stated, if one person falls apart, it could be catastrophic. Assembly alone will be a nightmare of precision work. Storage and containment have to be considered as well."

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #3
Listening to the two different assessments, Captain Ives felt that she could make a qualified decision. Remaining where she stood, she unfolded her arms.

"I expect three to be readied in two day's time from now, rigged and prepared for deployment," she said as she stared upon the activity. "This also means that this entire cargo bay must have its own structural integrity field, and properly strengthen to lead the blast outwards. If there is an accident, then at least we can prevent the entire ship to fall victim to this folly of ours. I will not jeopardise the Theurgy for this tactical advantage any more than I have to. I heard you, Commander Stark, and I will request more people from the Harbinger's Engineering Department to make this happen."

Before long, the sliding doors opened for Thea - who was evidently being projected from Lieutenant Kae's mobile emitter since the ship-wide hologrid was powered down. She was wearing her black chameleon body-suit. To see her in this unhooked state still felt a bit surreal to Jien, yet she smiled faintly and inclined her head in greeting. "Yes?"

"Captain, Commander, Lieutenant," said Thea and greeted them in turn with a smile that was more human - or sincere - than the one Jien had given her. It would seem she was enjoying the augmentations of her new emitter, with heightened senses and freedom of movement. Jien was surprised that she wasn't hiking through the mountains and discovering the world outside her hull more than she was, yet she supposed there was a sense of belonging to her physical starship body that made her stay.

The Ship AI folded her hands behind her back and directed herself to the new CTO. "Commander Renard and four pilots from the Lone Wolves Squadron are expecting you in Holodeck 02, Lt. Cooper." Saying this, she changed to her red suit seamlessly, "I will be assisting you in the scheduled tactical simulation as well, where I take you through my internal systems, teaching you my triggers and when best to use them. Are you coming?"

Jien answered in Cooper's stead. "Yes, you can have him," she said humourlessly, and stepped away towards the exit ahead of the Ship AI and the CTO,  "I will be going too. Commander Stark, walk with me."

Once they passed through the sliding doors, Jien did not turn her head as she spoke to Natalie. "Have you done as I suggested?" she said as they descended the barely lit corridor, "Have you taken up regular physical exercise in order to prepare you for your first training session?"

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #4
Listening to the commander in silence, Rennan heard most of what she said, but decided not to process  or respond to it. He was still busy with his calculations. As the commander finished speaking, Cooper simply smirked and shook his head so subtly that it would not be likely to be seen. As the captain spoke, however, he listened intently. "It's not so much a blast that I'm concerned about. It's more of a... For lack of a better word, concussion. I already have several prototype field emitters built. They aren't constant, because with the kind of force we need to prevent one of these 'concussions', having the fields running constantly would peel the ship like a potato. They are set to activate if the ambient gravity begins to show an upward trend or spike. Rest assured that once work begins, your ship will be mostly safe. Safe within reason -- Failing human stupidity."

Turning to see Thea, Cooper canted his head. He had never seen her before, but she seemed oddly familiar. Even so, something seemed off about her. He couldn't tell what it was, precisely. As she addressed them, he nodded. When she stated her business, the lieutenant raised an eyebrow. "But that's not supposed to be until..." he looked at his tricorder "Good God, the time has flown by. Alright. Ahm." he said, looking to his captain for permission to leave.

As they walked along the corridor, Rennan still rarely peeled his face way from the tricorder except to examine the woman who'd come to collect him. She had a nice body, he thought. nearly perfect. He wiped the thought from his mind, it was time for training. He couldn't let himself be distracted.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #5
Walking with her hands clasped behind her back, Thea longed to resequence herself to her bare skin and wear real clothes instead of the chameleon bodysuit she had worn since her activation. Now, when Lin Kae had remapped her tactile sensor routines so that she might feel her garments like an organic humanoid might, wearing the holographic bodysuit made her feel almost... naked. True, it had been rather form-fitted to begin with, yet now, it felt... unnecessary. Perhaps she might ask to replicate a Starfleet Uniform instead while she was serving her duties as a inter-phase between her systems and the crew.

As for the new Chief Tactical Officer, she could not quite decide if he was being arrogant and demeaning towards her, thinking her a lesser life-form than Captain Ives had claimed her to be a couple of days ago - the speech held on the plain forever stored in her memory banks - or, if his nature remained that of the distracted kind of scientist that he had been when he had belonged to Starfleet Research & Development. She wondered is he knew some of her makers, perhaps sharing breaks and meals with them in San Francisco? Or perhaps he had not had the security clearance needed to know anything about her development. Scientist or not, he did seem human enough, since he shared with them the inclination to look upon her body.

Again, she thought in embarrassment, real clothes could be advantageous...

"You will be going through a series of tactical scenarios, where I will guide you as needed," she said, observing how there was someone else walking towards them in the corridor further ahead. If her internal sensors had been online, she would have been able to determine who it was. It was a female figure, as much her optical sensors could detect. "You have already undergone the basic simulations that did not require my assistance the other day, merely to familiarise yourself with your old tactical training from Starfleet Academy."

The woman passed by one of the emergency lights, and she was revealed to be the civilian engineer that had docked in the shuttle bay during the battle with the Calamity. Her name was Rihen Neyah, Thea determined from her database, and she was wearing a dark blue overall that left very little to the imagination when it came to the exposure of her generous bosom. Her heterochromatic eyes looked at them with curiosity as they walked towards her.

"Today, while I am present, you will face harder tactical situations to solve, and I will be your interface with the simulated Tactical Controls since you have yet to learn how they work. You tell me what you wish to do, and I will execute your commands, as well as show you how it is done in the tactical controls. The Lone Wolves will act as the subst-"

"Hi! Hello, I am sorry, I think I am a bit lost," the Risian engineer said when they met in the corridor, and she laughed with her relief to have found them - laying a hand on Lieutenant Cooper's shoulder briefly. Her smile was perchance even more generous than her neckline. She looked between them both while she spoke, stepping back and taking a deep breath. "Since the turbolifts are down, I have to use the stairs, and there are no control panels working that can show me a map of this ship. Please, please, tell me how to get to Deck 03 so that I can help out there with the hull breach?"

Thea smiled and inclined her head. "Certainly, Ms Neyah," she said, and with her holographic emitter, she created a hovering schematic of the ship in front of herself. Yet even as she explained the path she needed to take, Rihen Neyah seemed far more interested in sizing up Lieutenant Cooper - utterly distracted from what Thea was explaining. There was, judging from her flirtatious demeanour, no doubt as to what was on her mind when she looked the CTO up and down.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #6
Natalie made a point of nodding to Thea when the ships avatar arrived in the cargo bay. While Lt. Cooper may have been...stoic in his response to her, Natalie was trying to be personable to everyone she met. She didn't always do a good job, if at all, but with Thea, at least, she felt she could easily make and enjoy making the effort. So she flashed the holographic woman (would she ever stop adding that qualifier in regards to Thea? 'holographic?') a warm smile from over the Captain's shoulder when Ives turned to Thea to release Cooper to her care.

She quickly tucked the smile away however when her commanding officer's attention turned back to the ships chief Operations Officer, whom did her best to look the professional that she was. "Aye, aye" and fell instep with the other flesh and blood woman. Of course, that set of a whole new train of thought as to whether o not comiliods bled, and if so, was it blood of some other substance. The younger woman's mind seemed to have gone from focused and driven (in relation to the potential hazards of what they were trying to produce in the cargo bay) to flights of philosophical fancy.

The duo passed thru the sliding doors, exiting the cargo bay. Once alone, the more Asian looking woman turned to the other, putting her to the question. Natalie had been expecting that, to be truthful; she knew it would come, and she could manage a terse nod. "I have," she replied softly, "Every morning before my shift." As her captain had suggested, after the events on Niga, Natalie had begun a more stern exercise regiment. She wasn't out of shape, exactly, but neither was she fit. And her hand to hand combat skills were clearly abysmal. As much as she disliked her...unease at the presence of the male form of Jien Ives, she was well aware of its existence. The best way to conquer that...fear, was to face it head on. Perhaps, training with the Captain, eventually she would be comfortable with both of her forms.

For now, she walked with the female Ives, shoulder to shoulder. She was nervous, yes, but almost... eager.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #7
Walking with Natalie by her side, Jien revisited the combat theory that she had shared with Natalie a couple of weeks back. "Like I told you, no matter how, when or why you wield a weapon, it remains an expression. Just like when you open your mouth to speak. Naturally, your opponent will raise his voice to counter your arguments. It is the best debater that will stand victorious once the argument is over."

Leading the way, Jien folded her hands behind her back as she walked, her words cutting clear as if she was still a Diplomatic Officer who addressed warring factions on some distant planet. "It is your mind that make the tongue, your fists, your feet and whatever chosen weapon move. Thus, in sharpening your mind, you will hone your skills - and consequently - adjust your body's strength and speed to match your intent. Consequently, your voice - the techniques I will teach you - is an expression of your soul."

They had reached a specific room. A location that was the very wellspring of need to address the hurt and doubt that lay between them. It was Transporter Room 02, and also where Jien - while she was infected - had ambushed Natalie Stark. The sliding doors were functioning, yet only the emergency lights were lit, so when the doors closed behind them, silence fell in the room. A soundless harbinger of what was to come.

The Captain changed her appearance... instead wearing a black training uniform of oriental fashion. Form-fitted yet with loose sleeves and ankles, it was held together by a black belt. Her hair was tied up in a braid that extended down her back. Having changed, she turned around to face Natalie. "Remove your uniform jacket. I am sorry that there is no time for you to change, but I think we can manage anyway."

The glowing lights of the emergency lighting cast dark shadows, and as Jien stood prepared, waiting, she was not moving. Only when Natalie had undressed, the command in Jien's voice made up for the lack of her movement in its eerie exactness. "Attack me, Commander. Show me the power of your conviction - what you have learned so far in the early days of this fleet - and I will teach you my arguments."

Slowly, Jien shifted her stance to that of a combative one; one leg before the other and open hands raised before herself. The hum of the ship was the only sound that would accompany this initial training session.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #8
"This is all going to be alien to me. I haven't dealt with anything like this in a while. I know how some of the things on the panel work, to an extent. I know how to navigate the computer systems, but as far as what we're talking about, I know a lot about theory and very little of practice." he said, smirking. "I haven't exactly stayed familiar with the operations of a starship's armament since the academy. It's never seemed pressing to be able to fire weapons, so long as I can build them. When I was aboard the harbinger, I configured and fired the phasers and deflector beam, but that's very close to the extent of my knowledge. Hopefully my memory will come back to me once I see the GUI."

The sudden barrage by the civilian engineer took Cooper off guard, but not in an unpleasant way. He attempted to discreetly look down her coveralls to see what he could see whilst she talked.

As she began to look him over, Rennan smiled. "You know, since you seem lost, I may be able to help you. I'm actually on my way to training at the moment, but later I could give you a tour of the vessel." he said with a grin. "Maybe get to know you a little bit better at the same time, yeah?"

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #9
Since Thea was already trying to explain to the Risian how to get to Deck 03, she was consternated when Rennan Cooper spoke up too, suggesting that he might help her instead. Thea fell silent, and realised what might be going on. Evidently, the Theurgy's new CTO enjoyed the civilian's smile... and the civilian was surely not looking at her projection of the ship anymore. Thea looked between the two, her understanding of social interactions not suggesting any immediate solution beyond remaining silent where she stood. She made the schematics vanish too, and ended up looking around the dark corridor idly.

"Oh, you are so kind, I would love that. I might be an engineer but I am not Starfleet so I have no idea how to find my way around." Rihen said this with an easy laugh, laying her hand on Lieutenant Cooper's shoulder briefly again. "If you could give me a tour of this ship or the other one, I would be so... so grateful. But you are you really heading to the gym to work out? I mean, all the gymnasiums aboard this ship are unlit, and cold too. Are you to work out in the dark?"

Rihen then glanced to Thea, who raised her eyebrows lightly while the civilian wore on about her faulty analysis of the situation. "With her? Are you using your Ship AI projection as your gym instructor? Is that a part of your duties?" she looked towards Thea again, genuinely surprised to hear this yet not at all demeaning her either, that smile of hers are bright and warm regardless of the situation.

"It is not standard procedure, yet I do believe I have the required information in the database to serve in that function," said Thea, hands still folded behind her back. She would not answer in the CTO's stead as to what he was about to do. She was fairly sure that would be a rude thing to do, so she stood quiet, watching how Rihen Neyah only had eyes for Rennan Cooper again. The engineer had cocked a hip and put a hand on it, tilting her head as she listened to the Senior Staff officer.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #10
[Natalie Stark]

Natalie remembered well the, well, not lecture, exactly, that word didn't seem right. Philosophy, that was the word she settled on, in her mind. She remembered Jien's philosophy of combat, of the use of it as an expression. Despite its oddity (nothing at all like the basics combat course that she recalled back at StarFleet Academy), the guise of combat as an argument between two 'voices' did strike a cord with the brunette. As it had before, the phrase "Expression of your soul" seemed to strike a cord with her.

Mentally, was she strong enough? No, a moment of honest reflection would lead to the conclusion that it wasn't just the physical techniques Capt. Ives was offering that Natalie needed here. The mental, as the captain suggested, was as important, if not more so, than the physical. And it seemed that the Captain knew exactly how she wanted to temper Natalie's mental prowess, or lack there of; by taking her back to where it all began, the source of Natalie's discomfort with the Male form of  her Commanding officer.

Transporter room 02.

Despite the time between the...encounter, and all the repairs that had been conducted since, Natalie had subconsciously avoided this room. True, she had, not all that long ago at all, encountered the CMO in another Transporter room on the ship, and the competing memories, one of violence and one of simple...lust, clashed. Her cheeks lit up in a blush, and despite the chill that the darkened room elicited, Natalie was grateful for the dim lighting that hopefully covered her flame red face. embarrassment and apprehension, an unpleasant mix.

Given the confused head space she was in, Natalie balked for just a second at her commanding officers words. But she swallowed and said a swift "aye, aye," as she realized her first hand on lesson was going to be right here. Hands that had only a slight tremble, tugged the zipper down. She tossed the black and gray jacket aside, into the corner near the door. She paused to pull her hair into a tighter knot behind her head, then swallowed hard. "Attack?" she repeated the order, then braced herself.

She knew not to just throw a punch all wily nilly. Her heart pounded in her chest as she watched the other woman, holding still before her. Her own legs spread a bit, distributing her weight, like she had been taught years ago. One hand out front, the other 'chambered' at her hip. A side step, then a lunge forward. Hips twisting, fist turning in a snap punch towards her commanding officer.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #11
When Commander Stark threw her first punch against her, Jien Ives' point of gravity was anchored to the ground. She moved not her feet, only deflecting the approaching punch with the blade of her hand upon the inside of the human's forearm - leaving the Chief of Operations' face wide open. The backhand blow that came next - made with the same arm that had blocked the punch - was hard enough to perhaps make Natalie fall, but not spitting her skin or teeth.

"On your feet," said Captain Ives and relaxed her stance again, extending her hand to the woman in order to help her up if she needed it. "Your opening statement is the first impression you give to your opponent. It can be beneficial, in some cases, to make the adversary think you are weaker than you are, yet regardless what kind of deception you utilise, you should not let yourself become wide open after just one attack with your hand."

After having helped Commander Stark, Jien walked away and circled back towards the human while she spoke. "If you take the initiative to lash out only once, you need to be ready for the opponent to answer in-kind immediately. Instead, you should think ahead. What do you mean to say? It might stall you for a moment, but even with the vaguest of plans, you can feel somewhat in control over the argument. Ask yourself what that your Logos is? Why do you fight? What is the subject? Do you need a chance to escape? Do you need to harm? Incapacitate? Kill? Does the location suit for your case?"

Gesturing with her hand, Jien continued. "Cause and effect analysis; what happens if you drop your guard at a certain point? Repetition, as in predictability? You need to consider the logical fallacies of an argument in order to win; to surprise the opponent and challenge him or her to think on their feet. If your plan is better than your opponents', the points you make will break down their argumentation, and you'll stand the victor."

Entering her guard-stance again, Captain Ives readied herself for whatever next statement the human might come up with. She had a beautiful permanent form, the Chameloid came to realise now that she saw her without her uniform jacket on. To have a permanent form so complete without the ability to change it in order to make it so; to be blessed by genetic birth and shaped by the toils of a life led... it was somewhat more of a miracle to behold for a shape-shifter like her. She was used to the fact, having grown up amongst humans, yet the realisation still came to her despite the years.


Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #12
Deck 7: Holodeck 3:
SCO: Miles Renard

Miles stood in the holodeck as he made his final touches on the program, one which he had named "Simulations Room 01."  The room hardly looked like a standard holodeck but instead was like two rooms. One, within the other room.  The room's entrance placed the entrant directly into a Replica of the Theurgy's main bridge with the door opening up in the viewscreen's center and the entrant facing directly towards the captain's chair.  Differentiating from the bridge was where the doors exiting it lead.  Each opened into a shared large room filled with 16 ovoid pods that within was a full replica of the cockpit of the Lone Wolves' Fighters. 

Secondarily, he had created a second simulation named "Simulations Room 02" It was simply the holodeck filled with the ovoid pods 30 of them in all.  The genius was within the programming that would allow a shared simulation between all of the 4 holodecks on the ship allowing each to run either configuration.

He tapped his com badge as he looked around the room and then settled taking a seat in the holographicly projected captain's chair. "Renard to Wolves sim-team.  Power up your pods. I'll be on the bridge for a couple more minutes.  Load up whatever sims you want to in the meantime."  He then tapped the com badge allowing it to go silent for a second before he tapped it again.  "Thea, Tell Cooper the Sim's warmed up and waiting on him."

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #13
Cooper smiled with the physical contact. "An engineer, eh? I formerly served in something of a similar capacity. As for the tour... Not a problem, if only a bit later," he said, his voice trailing off. "Not exactly 'working out' as such," he replied to her next question. "Just a friendly simulation," he continued a bit cryptically.

He laughed as the civilian engineer spoke, and then listened to Thea's input. "The truth is...," he started, fully aware that all of his lies to the fairer sex started that way. "It's all a bit classified, deary. I would tell you more, but quite frankly... Well, you know." He dragged his thumb across his throat and rolled his eyes back in his head before smiling once more.

Observing the engineer more closely, he noticed how her cocked hip accentuated her curves so nicely. His eyes immediately drifted upward to his two favorite sets of curves before... 'No. This is neither the time, nor the place. Pull yourself together, asshole. You're senior staff now. Act like it!'. Snapping out of his stupor, he subtly shook his head. "So sorry, miss, but I really should be going now. I need to get on with my training. Give me a ring later if you're still interested in that tour. Lieutenant Rennan Cooper, CTO, USS Theurgy," he said, flashing her a playful wink. Nodding back to Thea, he straightened out his uniform. "Alright, I believe we were on a mission."

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #14
Thea watched the exchange between the two organics with great interest. Was this courtship she witnessed? She had already reckoned that there was attraction between the new CTO and the civilian, but to see the results of it first hand - and so closely - was... interesting.

When Lieutenant Cooper had spoken about killing Ms. Neyah if he told her anything more of the simulation, Thea's eyes went wide, and she had thought the Risian would be aghast and run off down the corridor in abject horror, but somehow, she found the human hillarious. Rihen laughed and slapped her hand lightly against Cooper's chest while doing so, and when she was finished laughing she put on a mock-serious frown, which was comically poor with that radiating face and blinding smile completely betraying her mirth. "Oh, dear, I better not pry any more. Your activities with the Ship AI will remain secret. I will not tell a soul that I saw you two together. I swear it on sacred jamajaron."

Thea blinked in confusion yet made no comment, idly looking down both ends of the corridor again while she waited. Unlike Cooper, who seemed far more interested in the generosity of the engineers neckline - if overalls could be considered to have such. Neckline was, in this case, even an understatement. Thea wondered if she would be allowed to alter her body suit in a familiar fashion, since it seemed to make people listen to what you had to say. Smoother social interaction was something she always tried to enhance. However, the odds that the Captain would approve of it, based on cultural observations and his/her track record of adherence to Starfleet regulations, were unfortunately just a poor 0,427 percent. Not worth making the inquiry.

"I might just do that, Lieutenant Rennan Cooper," said Rihen in parting, her smile as blinding as ever and making the flirtatious way she styled his title and name into a sing-song promise. She walked past them both and continued down the corridor, hips swaying and glancing back at Rennan twice before she vanished.

"Alright, I believe we were on a mission."

"Incorrect," said Thea and continued to lead the way, thinking that Lt. Cooper actually needed to be reminded were he was going. Perhaps the engineer's overalls had shut down his brain's memory reattainment abilities. She immediately decided that an adaptation of her own body suit would pose a threat to the crew. "We were on our way to Holodeck 03 in order to continue your tactical training."

Her emitter received audio communication, and she patched it through just like anyone with a combadge might. [Thea,] said SCO Renard, [tell Cooper the Sim's warmed up and waiting on him.]

"Understood, Commander," replied Thea as she walked, "Lieutenant Cooper was held up with another project, and we were further delayed by speaking with civilian Rihen Neyah. I have reminded him already. Repeatedly. Please be informed that we are on our way."

OOC: IronFerrox, feel free to write how they arrive in your next post, showing them to the Tactical Station and what not, lol.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #15
Miles waited as he heard her reply.  In the time before they arrived he prepared the room further.  "Activate crewset Zero-one," he said as a series of holograms appeared throughout the bridge.  Each of them looked similar to Thea save for minor differences in haircut and the uniforms they wore.  In fact the best comparison would be they were each Thea if she were dressed as and wearing wigs of the actual bridge crew on the Theurgy, well those who had current holders of said stations.  The ones that had no current holders were instead projections with randomized hair styles. He looked around a moment further preparing the room, "Simulation, dismiss Captain and Tactical."  He said knowing that Thea herself would act as Captain and Cooper would be the tactical for this sim.  Until then he would enjoy his time in the Captain's chair Even if it was holographic in nature.

Thea and Cooper entered a few minutes later and Miles stood up from the captain's chair and looked over to Thea.  Glad to see you both here." he said with a smile.  Combat simulations will begin at some point after 15 minutes time.  Take the time to familiarize yourself with the controls; if you want I have a series of preprogrammed simulations to help familiarize you with hailing, tractor beam use, sensor probe launch and information retrieval, fleet message buoy reception, use of the sensor arrays, Intruder alerts and interaction with security in these situations, Shield monitoring and use, and of course the offensive capabilities of our phaser and torpedo systems.  Please use that time wisely to get familiar with the tactical systems.  As you know Coop, I don't hold back in the training sims and I will be sorely disappointed if you let the Theurgy be taken down by a single flight group of Valk 3s."  He paused after looking around "his" bridge. "Good luck Cooper; go ahead and take over Tactical."  He then looked to the holographic AI herself and added.  "The bridge is yours Thea."

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #16
She didn't see it coming; in hind sight, she should have. She should have fully expected the Captain to respond to her 'opening remarks' with a strike of her own; Jien certainly hadn't needed to contemplate a rebuttal. No, that smacked right against her jaw and sent Natalie spinning to the floor, her hands flung out to catch herself. She had been back in the gym; her reflexes, while not up to the task of blocking her CO's well timed strike, were enough to keep her face from  a secondary impact against the riveted, metal floor of the transporter room.

The brunette took the Asian looking shifters hand and let the other woman help her to her feet, trying to take in the words while ignoring the sting on her face. True enough, Jien had gotten her opening message across, with both words and the back of her hand. Keep your guard up. Natalie clearly hadn't. And while she was angry, it was more at herself then her CO; she expected Jien to throw a hard punch, and wanted the help, but still. It stung, her pride and her face.

Still, he let the words of the other woman sink in. Slowly, she slipped her feet apart again mimicking Jien's stance. Left food out, right foot back, hands up. Think about what I want to say, think about the message I want to convey, and follow it up. Not just one...statement. Natalie nodded, just once, and pursed her full lips, blowing her hair up out of her face.

A snap with the left hand, then a twist of her hips, dipping to the side, and her right hand, chambered at her hip, flies out. Its a wide punch, and Natalie tried to pull it in again, shifting her hips, and her stance again. Legs wider apart this time, the third shot, again with her left hand, going for the gut. ]

Surprisingly, she'd realize later, after the second round of punches, and the third, the fourth, the kicks and the blocks that would come after; never once was she afraid. Angry, yes; frustrated, certainly; and exhausted, for sure. But the pounding in her chest, the fear from where they were, and who she was sparing with; since Jien wasn't in her Male form, the younger Operations Officer felt no...terror.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #17
Walking onto the holodeck, Cooper smiled as he watched Renard stand from the captain's chair. "Hot damn, Miles. You've moved up a bit," he said, motioning at the captain's chair. "It's good to see you again too, man," Rennan said, closing the distance between them to shake hands with him.

Nodding as he spoke, Cooper had to smile. "Not to worry. I'm going to use my time wisely. But honestly, you should know me better than what you just said. First of all, I built the Valk IIIs to be able to take down a starship. You know that they can, you know that they will, and you know that it would be no stretch to say that a well trained pilot in one of those birds could take down a mediocrely trained starship crew any day. Second of all... I'm going to beat you. Just to prove a point, I would let you park your Valk in Engineering and start shooting just to prove that I can still beat you, no matter the odds. I built your birds, I know what to do to take them out of action." He smiled, looking from Thea to Renard. Extending his hand to shake, he cocked his head. "Let the games begin?"

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #18
Smiling and inclining her head to the SCO upon his retreat to his partition of the holodeck, Thea briefly re-analysed the memory recordings of her intimate encounter with Miles Renard's native form. There was no way of knowing what the many differences would be if she would propose to re-enact their encounter. Part of it would be the Ishtar entity's influence upon her temporarily organic mind, and another part would be the difference between that bygone organic body to that of the sensory input that had been derived from Ensign Skye Carver. Furthermore, she reckoned that a second intimate encounter with Renard might suggest another kind of proposal, namely that of a relationship, yet she lacked the psychosocial experience to make a complete analysis. She was curious to re-enact the encounter for sake of sexual experience and a thorough comparison between the synthetic tactile sensors she now possessed and her lost organic nerves.

When she was ceded the Bridge, she turned to the Tactical Station and led Rennan Cooper there, talking over her shoulder. "First, you should run a diagnostic on the tactical systems, learn how much phaser energy output per second is currently available, not to mention the status of the torpedo bays. Remember that I," she said, indicating the ship and thus her physical body, "will have more tactical systems available once you enter MVAM-mode, since 30 % of them are activated upon hull separations. I do not think I need to assist you with the control panel for this task, yet bear in mind to keep an eye on the long-range sensors, else you might loose valuable seconds before informing the whole Bridge that there are enemies inbound."

Stepping aside to let Lieutenant Cooper take his station, Thea opted to use a social gesture she had observed to encourage people. She lay her hand on Rennan's shoulder and smiled to him. "Just relax, and focus on the displays. The the sensor arrays are your eyes now, an its like you look at this sector from a bird's perspective. This is not like flying one of the Valkyries you designed, for after you engage MVAM mode, there is no point in trying to see the the battle from a single point of view. You need to see the tactical situation as a whole, else you will have an inferior kind of focus. I know you can protect me from damage, but I am right here if you need me."

Letting go of the new CTO, Thea paced away - assuming her red chameleon body suit and the role as Commanding Officer. She put a hand on her hip and gave the human another smile over her shoulder. "Good luck, Mr. Cooper."
And then, the simulation began...

OOC: Iron Ferrox, initiate the attacks yet leave the results open-ended for Gentleman to counter. Also lease it ambiguous as to whether or not Cooper initiates MVAM mode or not.

Gentleman, feel free to NPC Thea's different facets on the Bridge as you see fit, and naturally, the 'real' Thea will sound the Red Alert and give Cooper the 'Fire at will' command as well as approve the use of MVAM. Transcript for that can be found in the Ship and Department Info post on our board. Like Thea said, best of luck!

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Hidden Assets]

Reply #19
Miles sat in the sim pod of his valk as he signaled the other pilots in the pods.  They were all part of the relief shift of pilots.  Not his main group but still they were good pilots, all of them.  he spoke into the com of sorts and smirked.  "Ok, looks like they think they are ready for us.   We're gonna warp in about double the distance of their weapons lock range and I want you to follow my lead.  I'll send you a set of instructions and i need you to follow them precisely."

That said the simulation proper began as on coopers side a flight of 4 Valk threes dropped out of warp and positioned themselves in an attack formation going towards the They began to close in towards the ships maximum weapons range when miles smirked and added.  "Squad Execute Strafing run Picard Zero 1. Engage!"

The 4 ships seemed to disappear from the scopes as they entered into warp and then exiting warp simultaneously.  Each one was ata point behind the bridge with equal points both ventral and dorsal as well as Port and Starboard of the ship.The one on the Dorsal port and ventral starboard opened fire on the opposite quadrants of the main stardrive section of the hull as the two others picked their side's warp nacelle junctions and unloaded everything they could in this initial flyby into them.  With such small ships the main element they had was surprise and agility.  Cooper had more firepower but they had agility and the four fighters planned to use every bit of it. as they completed their flyby veering off and pushing every ounce of energy into the engines to get them back out of range of the Theurgy's weapons.

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