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Topic: Chapter 04: True Nature [D06|0900] (Read 20055 times) previous topic - next topic
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Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #50
“I am not without fear...I lived through th' Dominion War. No one goes through that without bein' changedh. What do I fear?...I fear...everything.”
- Sinead O'Riley, Cause and Effect

[ Lt. JG Sinead O'Riley | Balcony | Scion Nest | The Versant ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan, @steelphoenix, @BZ, @FollowTomorrow & @Numen
Try as she might, once the adrenaline wore off, Sinead could not stop the trembling in her hands and that all-consuming sense of tiredness, the pain in her side and chest increased tenfold, and she wanted to lie down and sleep to her hearts content. She would even consider joining Suq in a jeffries tube built for tribbles at this point for a little rest. She could not believe the resilience of the creature that was now little more than a puddle of soup and gooey matter on the floor. She'd had to watch her fire once Semathal got too close to Echtand and Nathaniel, but through their combined efforts, the horrible deed was done.

Her breathing was reedy and short, as she walked over to check on Deacon, failing to suppress a pained groan as she knelt down to feel his pulse, running her tricorder on him whilst slinging the Graviton rifle on her back, almost regretting the action as it filled her vision with stars. Her skills on battlefield treatment was worth next to nothing without equipment or medical gear, all of which Zeph had. Rising even as Echtand spoke, she took note of all he said, and keyed in a request from her Savi-issued PADD, and read the information as she crossed over to Zeph, tapping the woman gently on the shoulder.

Speaking quietly so as not to interrupt Echtand's conversation with the Captain, who was in a horrid state, but alive, which was what was important for now, she said, “Deacon has a concussion, and will needh your assistance, as will bruised.”

That was when the commotion outside the doors became impossible to ignore, and she remembered that there was a force of armed Savi warriors that they needed to deal with, not that she had forgotten them, and even factored in the terrible danger they were in. Echtand confirmed this. Whipping her head back to Zephyr, she spoke, bleeding a little more urgency in her voice now, “Treat me first. At least somethin' for th' pain. Echtand qi Versant.”

She had turned to look straight at the Savi leader while Zeph applied some field treatment with a strange expression on her face, and she spoke, in his own language, but lacking the most accurate accent or pronounciation, “< Thank you. For all you have done, and for all you are doing. >”

She thanked the doctor and gently patted the Savi on his arm as she passed him by, her face now resolute as she considered the best course of action. She'd pulled up more Savi words from her PADD, even as she prepared contingencies, taking note of the distance from the rifle that Zeph had earlier abandoned to assist Jien Ives, as well as her own phaser pistol, which was also sliding distance from her current position, and she dropped her own rifle, kicking it over towards Deacon, making sure the hilt and trigger was within easy reach of his hands. Even though Echtand had now authorised lethal force, she remembered his earlier instructions, plus she suspected a sense of reluctance in his voice, and also realized that these Savi, unlike Semathal or the other Scions, were, despite the situation, innocent in all this.

She then remembered something more important than the mortal danger about to face her, the officers and Echtand: She was a member of Starfleet, of the United Federation of Planets, and they were explorers, peacekeepers and ambassadors first and foremost. She also saw how tactically unsound their situation was, with most of their forces already decimated or in a battered state, that not even Nathaniel and Shar could withstand another onslaught. “Take cover,” said Sinead, indicating everyone, as she raised her arms in surrender, but tensed her muscles to leap for any number of weapons within reach of herself should this fail, and watched impassively as the door was breached and at least ten armoured Savi poured into the chamber, and she shouted in Savi, “< HOLD YOUR FIRE! >”

She idly wondered how Captain Kendrick would have handled this situation, then continued, having taken a chance already, “< I are Signet O'Riley of the United Federation of Eggplants, and I swear to you that we do not wash to fight. We mean you none harm. Please, let us mouth before harm more is conductor. >”

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #51
[ LtJr. Khelleshar sh'Zenne | Day 6| The Scion's Nest | The Versant ]

Attn: @Auctor Lucan @Triage  @BZ  @steelphoenix

When the beast finally fell, its monstrous shape reduced to a pool of aminiacids and other simple organic molecules, Shar felt the tension of the battle preyed on her. She leaned forward, resting her elbows on her knees and panting to catch her breath in the thin atmosphere their captors preferred. Their Savi ally, the so-call Moby, thanked them for their assistance and hurried to approach the stasis field where Zephyr was scanning the Theurgy's captain.For an instant, the Andorian muscles tensed again, ready to fight with her fists for want of another weapon if the Savi showed any hostile intent. But soon the three figures seemed engrossed in tricorder readings and scientific chatter. They were safe, at least on that front.

The shen regained verticality to look at the door where the Antes bodyguards had been pouring no so long ago. The noises of blows and shots increased in that gateway, the determination of the defenders to reenter in the nest, even more driven. Sooner or later they would make their way again, the battle was far from over. And Shar was unarmed. A new adrenaline boost flooded her veins, with the mental coldness that it brought in someone of her kind. A weapon. Just that. She needed a weapon. She had lost her rifle when the balcony rushed into the void and the pistol had turned into a grenade against Semathal. But the battleground was strewn with debris, pieces of plating, wreck from fallen platforms, chunks of chitin, scion soup and the dismembered corpses of the advance team. Their weapons must have been scattered among the remains. Shar launched in their search, ignoring the nausea that insisted on climbing up her throat facing the dreadful spectacle that surrounded her. And for ignoring the twinge of pain in her lower abdomen. Her gruesome scavenge only gave her fruitless results: smashed rifles, discharged guns, Savi weapons utterly useless.It was a disgusting and desperate search in equal parts, whose only result was to soak her arms and hands of vital fluids. She almost appreciated the blackness of the savi jumpsuit that prevented her from distinguishing the scope of that stain. She had more than enough seeing her cerulean hands turned into burgundy.

Just when the Antes managed to penetrate the room, Shar seized a Starfleet rifle. It's familiar humming filled her hears, proving that it worked properly. The Andorian gripped it with both bloodied hands, facing the door, willing to sell her life and that of her group at a high price. Before she had time to aim at the new enemies, Sinead ordered her and the romulan to take cover, while she advanced towards the Antes, hands up and mouth full of unintelligible gibberish. She could only guess that the engineer was trying to use the diplomatic way. And even though the Scion had shown that there were enemies against whom there was only the option of fighting, they were the Starfleet. They were explorers, investigators, diplomats, not soldiers. As much as the Chekthora formation weighed in Shar actions. They were better than that. They MUST be better.

For a moment she looked at the pale face of their ally, almost indistinguishable in the woman's eyes woman to the rest of the bulb-heads. Even Moby, that had been crystal clear about they mustn't harm the Antes before, had given them his permission to attack the new enemies. Anything to get him time to obtain the control of the starship. But O'Riley wanted to try another solution, a better solution. Shar could not but agreed with her intent. With studied slow movements, the muzzle of her weapon aiming to the floor, the Andorian advanced until being placed just behind the human. She was shorter than the Ops. Officer, which allowed her to have a perfect perspective of the Savi while keeping her weapon and hands hidden by Sinead's back. For the moment, Shar just waited. But at the slightest aggressive movement by the Ante bodyguards, her position would allow her to push the human aside and start firing. Antennae firmly crushed against her scalp and a deadly stare in her eyes, she remained idle, but prepared.

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #52
[ Ens. Nathaniel Isley | Scion's Nest | The Versant ]

In battle, there was always the moment just after the battle finished and just before the adrenaline wore off that made him feel shaky, like he was going high speed and everyone else was very slow. He was gripping the gun he stole from an Ante, staring at the porridge that was formerly known as Semethal. He expected it to rise, start again, to kill them all. Then, when it didn’t do that, he expected that he was actually dead and Semethal really did kill him.

But he heard Sinead and Ives and Echtand, and he heard something about Heather, and he heard Shar’s voice and Deacon’s name. He felt aches in his body—a lot of aching. He was alive, by some miracle, and damn did it hurt.

He started to move towards the others. His body was covered in...well, he didn’t want to identify it, but it felt kind of like giant alien snot. It came from the admiral they just slayed. He supposed he sort of looked like a slime-monster himself. HE had meant to speak, to say something, but Sinead told them to take cover.

Right then, the adrenaline was back. He tried to take cover behind some debris from the balcony. He was not very well hidden, but it was cover. He looked over and saw the personal guard from earlier. He held his fire, waiting for the one moment they slipped up and tried to attack Sinead.

He was starting to tire out though. His whole body felt like a brick. He hoped that they would be peaceful, because he wasn’t sure if he’d survive another battle, and he’d rather not die covered in slime.

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #53
[ Deacon | Day 6 | Scion's Nest | The Versant ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan  @Triage  @BZ  @Numen @FollowTomorrow 

Deacon was staring at the pile... the sludge that had been their enemy.  He knew he should be getting up, claiming some prize from the steaming pile of malignant goo.  An ear would do.  Did it have an ear?  Six or seven, he was certain.  It had to have had at least that many to move around so quickly.  Wait... not ears... noses.  No... that didn't sound right either.  But running noses amused him for some reason, so he chose to let that decision lay.

The bringloidi female hovered over him, the faint beeping of the tricorder in her hand causing his ear to flick slightly, well, as much as it could, but when he looked up at her, her features seemed hazy, out of place, indistinct.  An equal match for his thoughts, which seemed to flit and dance just out of reach.  There was pain, and given he'd not known pain since his childhood, he found he had not missed it.

Slowly, his eyes moved from one survivor to the next, settling at last on their objective, his patriarch, his captain, whatever face s/he chose to wear.  A sense of resigned contentment settled inside his chest.  Success.  He had succeeded.  The enemy was now slag and the captain was once more secured.  He had fulfilled his oath.  Perhaps not in a dignified manner nor one suited to what he saw as his station, but the Fanged God gave him a challenge and he had met it.

"Take cover," the female had said.  When had she said it?  His thoughts were too much like syrup, unwilling to cast off the tethers of pain and fatigue.  He felt the weapon once more in his hands, but the blurred images at the edge of the room were far from suitable targets and he lacked the energy to charge into their midst.  Staggering to his feet, tail limp and arms barely propped out to the side, he could rationalize but a single objective that remained within reach -- he had to protect those behind him.

Wait... who was behind him again?

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #54
[Lt. Zephyr Praise | Scion Nest | Dual Scans | Dual Lives | Surprises Never-ending] @steelphoenix @FollowTomorrow @Triage @Numen @Auctor Lucan

The white alien creature was speaking. Zephyr was busy not-listening because she was far too busy trying to get Ives free and clear. He needed medical attention and even though he did not think himself worthy of such attention and so many people coming to his aid she knew that it was important. He was important to the crew of the ship he had Captained. That much Zeph knew, and it wasn't just the words that his crew had mentioned about the importance of the man involved. It was the way they felt. The respect, the reverence, the way that they were all solidified in the fact that he was of utmost import. She could tell that he meant something to the people around them. Thus, he became important to her even though she had never met him. She had no loyalty to the man and it was more so than the fact that he was a Starfleet Captain that drove her to make sure he was all right. 

What struck her as odd was that there were two readings. Stating so out loud seemed to summon the white Torture-Beast to her side. Though, he didn't feel like the others had. She didn't really know how to read his emotions or the like only because she had never really encountered their kind. She could tell some things, things she had felt while she was forced to chose her future race and while she was fed and cared for afterwards. But he, was an enigma and one she couldn't easily find the emotional range for. Given time, she knew that she would figure it out but it wasn't as though empathy worked the same across the board for all races. 

He began to spout scientific and medical terminology, of which Zeph was luckily both and able to understand and follow along well enough. She had never met a dual-gendered person such as the Captain before. Zeph would like to get her hands on the files of the man who could seemingly chose what gender he wished to be and pick his brain about his origins and race. But, this was neither the time nor the place. Maybe he would indulge her later. 

"Two life signs?" she looked up at the strange black eyes of the being that was much taller than the petite officer. She wasn't short for a woman either, but she felt dwarfed next to the one codenamed Moby. 

The Captain asked for an explanation, and Zeph waited for one as well. Moby scanned the area and said there weren't two life signs. Ives was speaking which worried Zeph more because the man was in bad enough shape and she hadn't been able to treat him yet. Which meant that he was weak and not getting any better. Still, she knew that he was trying to get to the bottom of the anomaly that they were reading right now. All Zeph wanted to do was heal the Captain. Zeph felt like she was currently back at the Academy when the Ante began mentioning that just because the atoms that made up a person were disintegrated that didn't meant that they ceased to be. 

How is that.. even possible?

As the two bantered back and forth Zeph was absorbing this new information. It was definitely something she wanted to work on when she was able to get herself into a science lab or medical lab. The fact that atoms, weren't exactly gone if they were dead so long as they had been able to shift to something else, like a stasis field. She wasn't sure if it was because of this person.. Macmillan, if it was because of her race, or if it was because she was close to the stasis when she had ceased to be. The Ante said they could re-integrate her, somehow. Zeph's eyes widened. The mere thought they could do such a thing, it excited her and made her want to do all kinds of research on the Fleet's stasis fields and transportation buffers, not to mention seeing if they could use things like the transportation beams to accentuate such things. 

Ives wanted it done. She didn't doubt that he would. Of course, he would want it done. One of his own, back the way they might have been before.  Who knew what this person would be like when they were brought back from their DNA signatures but, she hoped it worked. She also wanted to work with Macmillian once they were back. Do testing on how they were. Compare their after reintegration to the before. There would be all sorts of Fleet files on the former MacMillian. 

Zeph's mind was racing. 

A tap came to her shoulder as she sat there thinking about all the things she had just learned, the things she wanted to do, the things she wanted to explore. The other woman, Zeph couldn't remember her name, but she could feel the soft waves of pain coming off of her. She couldn't tell exactly where the woman was hurt but she could tell that she was. Seeing her thrown around in the battle, she had no doubt that something could be broken or bruised. She hoped it wasn't the former but then she wouldn't be able to tell until she actually did a scan. The woman explained that Deacon, the other person with them, had a concussion and needed to be fixed up. She was also afraid that she likely had a bruised rib or two. 

"Of course!" Zeph said with a bright smile on her face. Before she could get started the pounding on the door grew much more demanding and it wasn't going to be long before whatever was on the other side of the door was in here with them. Moby mentioned that it was going to be the crew that was trying to figure out what happened to the big boss and he was going to be trying to put MacMilliam back together again which meant that they needed to protect him, Ives, the Stasis field, and keep the others from intervening. Sure. Sounds like a cake walk.

Zeph's eyes turned back to the bruised woman with the odd accent. "Right. Of course! You first." she said as she turned with her tricorder and quickly scanned the woman in front of her. Sure enough, bruised ribs, one was cracked slightly and was probably the cause for the sudden sharp pains here and there that Zeph could sense from her. Quickly she opened her med kit and pulled out the hypospray, it was already loaded with enough drugs to get through a lot of things including the woman's injuries. She quickly dialed in the proper drug, to alieviate the pain as well as heal the ribs. Bringing it up to the neck of the woman in front of her she injected her quickly. 

"Give it just a moment" she said as she grabbed up her osteogenic stimulator and ran it over the rib region of the woman's body to heal any weak spots and of course the one crack that the tricorder had detected. "Good as new, be careful out there. I'll see to Deacon." she gave a warm smile to the woman and looked around for where Deacon was currently at. 

Of course like any Federation patient he was trying to get himself up off the ground. She quickly moved past Moby who was doing his Moby-thing and she made her way across the deck over to the man who's tail was limp. "You can't just rocket off with a concussion. If you don't get that looked at and fixed you could get permanent brain damage. Some things can't be fixed you know." she said quickly as she put her hands on his shoulders for a moment to steady him. 

"You're Deacon right? The one over there with the accent spouting nonesense said you needed my help. I'm Zeph!" she beamed at the man and slowly guided him back to sitting on the deck with her. Pulling out her tricorder she quickly began a scan. Her hands covered in the same goo that he was covered in but it didn't seem to phase her in the least. She nodded at the results. "You know, you have to take care of yourself too, and in this lull of battle now is the time to seek medical attention. I am sure you're like most fleeters. No medical care, just pushing on, but then you could end up dead. If the swelling on your brain didn't stop you could have a seizure or fall into a coma. At the wrong moment that could spell your death." she said flashing her black eyes up at him as she grabbed her hypo and began to administer the medication that would decrease the swelling, increase the healing, and kill the throbbing that was likely in his head. 

"But! Lucky for you, you have the best doctor on the deck with you." she gave him a little wink and a smile. "You should feel better now. So, now you can get up and charge into battle. Be safe! Call me over if you need me." Zeph packed up her medkit again and rushed off quickly back to the side of Ives, and to hopefully see what was going to happen with the second life sign. Not to mention make sure that it was stable, secure, and viable.

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #55
[ Captain Ives | Scion Nest | Main Research Hull | Precept-ship Versant ]
From behind the shimmering stasis field, Jien Ives watched how things unfolded, and despite the enduring pain, and the weariness, the suspense kept him on his feet.

He saw the mixed group of remaining officers, known and unknown, were taking defensive positions to repel the threat of the Scion's personal guard, who was just about to breach the sealed doors. A quick glance told him that Sinead O'Riley was reading Savi words from her tablet, speaking to the present Ante, before she also stepped towards the imminent threat. Once the personal guard did enter, other alien words from the Engineer did stall the Savi from firing immediately. They appeared momentarily... confused.

And when they saw Echtand - which Jien believed was his name - standing by the stasis field and not fighting them, they had another reason to stay their attack, bewildered about the Voice's presence. Perhaps they believed the Ante a hostage, forced to free Jien. The guard leading he group frowned deeply behind the visor of his black helmet, apparently not able to fully understand what was happening. One thing was apparent, however. Their Admiral had been killed. They had witnessed the battle, and now, Semathal was gone, and there was Scion ichor smeared across the ruptured deck plating. Jien could already tell that the pending decision wasn't about to be a good one.

The order was passed, a sharp sound of a Savi word, and as one, the armoured guard raised their weapons, firing.

Only their beams never reached Sinead, Isley, Deacon and the others.

A green, shimmering forcefield separated the two opposing factions, having snapped into place mere moments before it was too late. Jien looked around for an explanation, and then he caught it, how Echtand had turned his head towards the front of the nest - the green forcefield shimmering in his black eyes. Only he could have raised it, and the stare he gave the guards was unreadable, perhaps even conflicted, but be that as it may, he turned back to the machine that held Jien captive, and resumed his work. He shouted in Savi, speaking to the guards while he worked, before he suddenly switched to Federation Standard.

"I'm activating an emergency containment field for the reintegration," he said, tapping rapidly at his wrist-mounted tablet. "The internal sensors is feeding the DNA sequence through the targeting confinement. I am achieving bond cohesion... but the scattered fragments were not all caught by the stasis field. I am widening the targeting scan to the entire nest..."

Meanwhile the Savi outside seemed conflicted over Echtand's words, in the end, it seemed they still decided to try and deactivate the forcefield and were shouting, apparently sending orders for reinforcements. At least that's what it appeared like to Jien, who wasn't sure what to tell the Ante standing outside the stasis field. "How much time?"

"I am reassembling a living humanoid from vapour," said Echtand, the cut of his frown clearly annoyed at the interruption. "Phase transition coils are at 50 %. Biogenic field at peak efficiency. Atomic cohesion transmit imminent in ten seconds. Pattern buffers are receiving biomatter. Yet..."

"What?" asked Jien looking at the agitated guards and their efforts to try and deactivate the field, or do something to deal with the present threat in the nest. Echtand must have had a clearance higher than the guards after Semathal was disintegrated, since they were obviously having trouble with getting that forcefield down. Moments of precarious safety lasted still, but it was only a matter of time before it might change.

"This specimen, this Radiant, was not in the Correction Program," said Echtand as if that explained it all.

"Which means?" Jien turned his attention back to the Voice.

"Which means that the Archive does not have a full genetic profile saved, much less tissue sequences for replication. 99,9 % of the biomatter held in animated suspense was attainable from the stasis field and the nest. There is, however, a loss of 0,01 percent to the particles outside the stasis field, which has decayed beyond a state which I could not revitalise, and that amount can't be used for the reintegration. If she had been in the Correction Program, I might have been able to compensate for the loss."

"Does this mean you can't bring her back?" asked Jien, even knowing how absurd such a demand might seem in the context of this extraordinary scientific feat that the Savi suggested he might preform.

"I can, but then I will have to compensate using other biomatter. I have access to it all, but I need a moment to research options from the gene bank." Echtand glanced up from his tablet for a moment. "I have a fairly good idea what samples are viable for the reintegration. This would mean she won't be the same. Not entirely. Unfortunately, I don't have the time to research alternatives. It is all I can offer you."

"You do not know the importance of this species," said Jien thickly, stepping closer to the edge of the field, which was still there to preserve Heather. Some of the other officers were there next to them, the Betazoid the first to arrive.

Echtand clicked with his teeth, his frown stern. "You do not know at what personal cost I am helping you, much less what my prolonged presence here in your midst might mean for the future of my people," replied the Ante, his look sharp as he turned to include others present. "I need to enter the Vault, learn the truth about the Scion Directive, and speak it to the Savi Flotilla as a whole. The seconds which I linger here jeopardises my opportunity of command and communication. The Vault may be shut for me. I cannot stay."

Jien could only grasp the gist of it, how it was important to the Ante and their future. "This... what you are doing now, is more important than the Savi, even the Federation as a whole. The Radiant species is the key to figh-"

"You have already told me," said Echtand, spending a few more seconds with his task, before he lowered his tablet. "I have automated the reintegration, and the shut-down of the stasis field. I must leave you now... "

"How do we get off this ship?" Jien demanded.

"I will transmit your escape routes as soon as I am in the Vault, Aspect Maker. Await the reintegration, and then, you will be free. I may also be able to give you what you need to revert the Corrections made upon your officers, but for that to happen, I need to be in the Vault."

"Wait!" called Jien, knowing that they were left in a really precarious situation.

But already, Echtand had entered a command into his tablet, and he vanished in aquamarine light - leaving them behind. And as he did....

...the containment field that would reintegrate Heather turned visible, a few yards away from the stasis field. It was a dome-shaped light, and within it, a prostate form began to assemble in the vague shape of an unconscious woman. Slowly, gradually, the form was taking it's shape, and Jien was in awe of the process, despite the fervency in which the guards tried to deactivate the forcefield.

OOC: Sorry for the delay, site issues and all. Hope you have enough to work with here!

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #56
[ Echtand qi Versant | The Archive Access | Precept-ship Versant ]
Once he materialised outside the Vault once more, Echtand stepped past the body of the Memory, still lying there on the deck, and headed straight for the entrance.


Already on edge after facing Semathal, Echtand whirled around with his graviton pistol raised, only to find himself facing another Ante armed with the same kind of weapon. The figure was lit from behind, the door to the corridor open, and he squinted to make out it's features. Soon, it stepped sideways, and that face was well known to him.

"<Sclergyn,>" he said, almost lowering his pistol, before he realised she must have derived how he'd been the one that killed the Memory. Why was she there, though? He had told her to return to his quarters after leaving the Ovri egg on display. Did she..? Echtand bit his teeth together. His following question was as much a confession as it was asked out of concern. "Were you hurt?"

His mate was not impressed. Not in the slightest, but as for how hurt she was, it seemed her affliction wasn't physical. She looked at him with a mix of hate and loss, not to mention confusion. It seemed she couldn't comprehend the reason for his actions, and he did not blame her for it. When she spoke, her contralto voice lashed like a whip. "<I am, but what have you done?>" she demanded, the pistol still raised towards him, and he could not stand down either. Too much was at stake to put his faith in her understanding. She wasn't finished. "<What are you trying to do? After I was attacked by the filthy specimens you sent to my lab, I tried to contact the Eye, to alert it about the escaped specimens that you were supposed to have Recycled, only to find him gone. Did you kill the Eye as well? Do you have any idea what Admiral Semathal will do to you?>"

"<Semathal is dead,>" said Echtand, surprising even himself how calm he sounded about it, given what he'd just lived through. "<I am now next in line for command of this ship. I have lear->"

"<The Flotilla will never recognise you as Admiral. Surely you see->" Sclergyn was incredulous, eyes wide.

"<I don't care about the command of the ship. The Versant is not important.>"

"<Then why?>" she asked, beseeching him for an answer as she stepped closer, "<I took the thym for you! I thought our child would have brilliant prospects for any field of study. That our child would get indicators fit for the High Class, and that we might even bring a Scion of our own to life! That we would further our species into the next stage of Savi evolution! Now, we will both be sent to the biolabs, our bodies given to science, along with the child inside me. The only way I can spare myself, and the child, is to stop you. Only then may I aid our species in all the discoveries to come.>"

The mere mentioning that he might have seeded a Scion in her womb was enough for Echtand to lash back. "<You don't know what the Scion Directive has led us to,>" he said, circling the antechamber to the Vault, the body of the Memory between them. <"I believe we are on the verge of another Cataclysm. That we have pushed too far for our own evolution, forgetting ourselves in our need for more, and corrupted ourselves beyond recognition. We have lost our identity, and I mean to prove it. And the evidence... is inside there.>"

Echtand raised his free hand towards the entrance to the Vault. Sclergyn glanced in that direction, but only for a moment.

"<So you are doing all of this on a mere hypothesis?>" she asked, not the least impressed, "<You scheme and plot with primal specimens and use them to further this mutiny. You arm them and have them kill us Vigilant of Sa just to prove this ungrounded claim, without knowing you are right?>"

"<I am right!>" snapped Echtand, even if she also had truth in her claims, "<In a matter of years, us Antes will be gone, and what's left are only the Scions, who altered the Code before we were even born!>"

"<How would you know this?>" hissed Sclergyn, the muzzle of her pistol still following his every step.

"<Because there is no Purity Syndrome!>" he shouted, the memory of Blue Tiran's revelation vivid in his mind. "<It is a lie! We do not release the specimens we Correct. They are all Recycled! There are no records in the Federation about the the thousands of specimens we have let back into their natural environments.>"

"<I have seen those very records myself...>" said Sclergyn, shaking her head. "<Countless times. They always mention the Purity Syndrome. Of course we release the Corrected as according to the Code. It's the legacy of the Progenitors that we carry out.>"

"<No, those records are added at every forage we make! Our ships add them to their databases every time.>"

"<How do you know this?>" she asked, narrowing her eyes at him.

"<Because one of the specimens told me,>" said Echtand, and even as he said it, he knew what the answer would be.

"<So you trust the word of a primate over that of our own systems?>"

Time was running out, and Echtand had to do something. He just didn't know what to say to convince his mate.

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #57
The cost for peace is always high, but the cost for violence is even higher.
- Cameron Henshaw, Conduct & Consequences

[ Lt. JG Sinead O'Riley | Balcony | Scion Nest | The Versant ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan, @steelphoenix, @BZ, @FollowTomorrow & @Numen
There had been a moment of hesitation, consideration, to all that she had said, and all that they could see. What they saw was that their test subjects had broken free, armed themselves, and killed their leader. She had little time to react when the bolts raced towards her torso with alarming accuracy, only for it to splatter harmlessly a scant few inches away from her against an unseen forcefield that had been erected, by Echtand. Whipping her head to glance at him, she then dove for the nearest graviton rifle, and held it ready, but she was not ready to resort to absolute violence just yet.

Taking partial shelter behind one of the fallen platforms, she keyed in more translations and began to speak in Savi some more, “< HOLD YOUR PYRE! PLEASING! >”

It was a vain hope that Echtand might make a public announcement that could pause the violence going on throughout the ship. But in the event that did not occur, they had to find some way to negotiate a ceasefire, or more lives could be lost, and they couldn't afford to lose Jien Ives, or this Heather person, apparently. “< WE ASK FOR TIME, TIME! WHAT HAPPENING HERE WILL BE EXPLORED! WE SWORE! WE NOT DO WISH YOU HARM! >”

She pointed towards a stunned guard beyond the force field from their earlier skirmish, “< Looking! Meat not non-functional! Respirating still yes much. >”

Even as she spoke, she began to input instructions into her PADD to access the cleaning beams that Echtand had used to great effect earlier. If this went badly, they may have no choice but to use every tactical advantage they had available to even the odds. In the meantime, there was one last ditch effort she could make, “< LEADER YOURS. HE AM YOUR ENEMY! LISTEN! WE CAN EXPLAINING! >”

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #58
[ LtJr. Khelleshar sh'Zenne | Day 6| The Scion's Nest | The Versant ]

Attn: @Auctor Lucan @Triage  @BZ  @steelphoenix

O'Riley's attempt to carry out a peaceful solution lingered on the Antes' minds for a few minutes, but it was finally discarded when the bodyguards of the fallen commander raised their rifles and pulled the triggers against the abductees' battered group. The engineer sneaked out to cover herself behind debris parapet but Shar didn't move from where she was. She simply raised the barrel of her phaser and pulled the trigger.The odds were against her, but she could take some Antes down before she was incapacitated. The Andorian tensed her muscles, in anticipation of the burning pain of the graviton bolts that soon would hit her... but that never reached her body. Her own blast dissolved harmlessly against the greenish forcefield that had just appeared between her and her enemy. Khellesar blinked a couple of times looking at the barrier that separated her from their enemies, their expression as perplexed as hers, as far as she could understand the alien's features. Behind her there was a slight hum and when the shen turned around herself, the only thing left of their Savi ally was an aquamarine sparks field that indicated the point from which he had been transported. They were on their own again.

For a moment, she was petrified on the spot, the weapon pointed aimlessly to the floorplates, and her gaze roaming around the battlefield. The Savi seemed to recover from their puzzlement in front of her, initiating actions to bring down the force field, while Sinead continued to scream nonsense on their enemies' tongue from their hiding place. Finally, Shar was able to move her long legs and backed up to hide herself behind the rubble of one of the fallen balconies.She needed to think, conceive a new plan, but her mind had gone blank. It was the worst moment for that to happen, she thought in frustration as she nipped the inside of my lower lip. "C'mon Shar, think, think think," she scolded herself. She took the rifle from her shoulder and prepared to drop it at her side when a twinge of pain made her look away from the Savi and gaze the floor close to her. A sharp metal shred had torn the calloused skin of one of her fingers, spilling a drop of cobalt blue blood on its tip. What Shar saw was not a scrap of metal or a weapon ... what she saw was a tool. He dragged out the piece of metal from the rest of the debris and placed it on her lap, before she reached the padd on her wrist and typed until she got again the map of the ventilation ducts that had been the start of the battle in the small screen. It could work. Now she could open the panels and provide everyone an escape route. She traced the escape route through the service pipes and shared it with her teammates' padds, before she got back on her feet and run towards the vent she had selected, holding her improvised tool firmly in her hand.

Ignoring the conversations around her, the dome where a humanoid form was beginning to form, the shouts of O'Riley toward the Savi, the rifle that she had been forgotten behind... Shar began to work. If the force field fell, they could escape, she was going to take care of that.

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #59
[Lt.  Zephyr Praise | New Discoveries | Eye Openers | New Experiments | Miracles]

The information, the whole situation, it was all very new.  Zephyr was soaking it up like a sponge left to dry in the desert long forgotten.  She had a million questions running through her mind.  So many plaguing the apt mind that ran behind the skin there.  She needed to know so many things, so many answers.  She wanted to get her hands on the Savi research, she wanted to find out how exactly they took DNA sequences that were just basic particles from the stasis field and recreated a person.  She knew the science behind transportation and beaming, she wondered if they were similar or altogether different.  She wanted to dissect and figure out how this whole process worked. 

For the first time, part of her wished she could stay on and learn with the Savi.  They would be invaluable teachers, if she could get them past the whole.. disregarding the actual choices and genetic make up of the universe around them part. 

So lost in thought she was that she didn't even realize the Antes charging into the room ready to fire at the team thinking that Moby was likely in danger as well.  She was lost in thought, eager to see how the whole process worked.  Her mind drinking up the knowledge, the hints, and every tiny thing that Moby was able to give to her.  She listened to every word and followed every single tap of the long white fingers.  She couldn't read his language, it had never been a gift of hers; languages.  Though she knew a few words of this and that she had picked up through life she would never claim to be able to hold conversations.  Still, her eyes followed, she listened, she absorbed the whole process as he expanded his genetic marker searching to a broader spectrum.  She wondered if that would make them harder to pull into the woman or if that would make them, somehow, weaker.

Zeph was full of so many questions and curiosities.

Ives was curious how long it was going to take.  Zeph was too, not because she was in a hurry but from a purely scientific standpoint.  She desired to know how long it would take, she wanted to find the minutes, the seconds, the mirco seconds... how many breaths would it take to get a person from particles back together.  Would they be the same?  Would they be different?  Would their chemical make up retain it's form or would something happen.  Could the genes be tampered with, so many thoughts rushing through her mind she had at this point completely forgotten that she should probably take this time to heal Ives.  It had completely slipped her mind in the excitement of the possibility of learning something completely new.

99.9% had been saved but there was that .01% that the system could not find.  Zeph hung on every single word that the white bastard said, her eyes wide with avid curiosity and it was likely something that Moby would recognize and likely saw in his own people.  Zeph had a very strong morale code though and she tried very hard to hold to it.  Though things she had done on the Azurite station, things she could no longer speak about, things that would probably get her hated or worse... killed, were things that were oddly similar to what the people here did.

She could not judge them too harshly, she was cut from the same cloth.

Moby was pulling biomatter from another, but compatible sample.  “How long does it take to reintegrate the DNA of a sample and recreate a deceased person?” she asked though she doubted that Moby was going to answer.  She didn't expect him too, but she was so bursting with curiosity that she couldn't help but ask the question.  “I'd love to get my hands on that research.” she muttered more to herself than anyone specifically.

Ives was impatient and Moby was not having any of it.  The Captain was in no place to ask for favors or criticize the process.  She hoped that Moby would be able to finish the whole reintegration process because she was desperate to see it working.  She had so many questions to ask Moby so many things that she wanted to know and then, suddenly, he was gone.  “Wait!” she cried after him at the same time as Ives. 

“You didn't answer.. my question.”

Shoulders slumped as she realized a wealth of information  had just beamed himself right off the deck and out of question range.  She looked over at Ives and knew that she really needed to heal him.  He deserved it and it would only be to the benefit of everyone else in here.  Crossing over to him fully she rose her tricorder and began to scan him again.  He wasn't overly injured, nothing that she couldn't repair, and nothing that a full service sickbay couldn't make a thing of the past.  Right now though, she reached forward and grabbed her hypo from her medkit and rose it up, pressing it slightly agianst the neck of the man.  Injecting him with pain killers, something to give him a boost of energy and to start the healing process.  Quickly, she ran him over with dermal and osteogenic stimulator for anything else that might be wrong before she stepped back.

“Good as new.” she said to the man with a warm smile.  “There are a lot of people that will be happy to see you.”

Zeph turned to see where the being was being recreated.  Her eyes alighted on the dome where the woman was being turned back into a living breathing thing.  She rushed over, nearly stumbling over her own efforts to pick up her medkit.  Dying for samples, for scans, for anything.  Whipping out her tricorder she aimed it at the dome to collect any and all information that she could.  Hungry for anything at all that she could gather about what was going on right now.  While the tricorder gathered any and all information that it could, the screen going wild with readings, she was readying her hypos incase the woman was in pain, reading her regenerators incase something was not quite as it was supposed to be.  Readying a sedative if the woman woke up and freaked out because she wasn't as she had been before.

Zeph was practically bouncing with excitement, her body humming with the desire for the knowledge that lay just a few feet in front of her. 

Waiting, was hard.

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #60
[ Deacon | Day 6 | Scion's Nest | The Versant ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan  @Triage  @BZ  @Numen @FollowTomorrow 

One of the unfamiliar females had come to tend to him, her mouth moving oddly fast but the words didn't seem to reach his ears at the same pace, at least that was the way it seemed as he stared at her, feeling at once oddly disassociated from his own body and yet very much anchored by the weight of it.  Care.  Battle.  Death.  He managed to filter one or two words from the woman's monologue.  Was she praising him?  He rubbed his forehead even as he felt a pressure against the side of his neck -- the side, at least, that hadn't born the brunt of the scion's clawed grip.

With a questioning glance, he watched her return the hypospray to her pack.  Treatment?  Medical attention.  Slowly, the heavy thoughts began to stir, the neurons sparking back to life as the medication worked its wonders and his attendant gave some parting words of assurance before returning back to the captain.

He remained seated for a moment, letting the pain dissolve from behind his eyes, taking inventory of his senses, blunted as they were.  The antes had resumed their assault, a forcefield the only thing ensuring their own safety for now.  Opening his blue eyes, he took stock of the wreckage around him.  Their so-called ally had departed.  The female doctor hovered near the captain even as they seemed to watch another nearby device intently.

The bringloidi seemed to shout at the body guards, but they seemed unimpressed, unmoved, or as disturbed with her translation as he was.  Admittedly, he didn't know the language of these creatures any more than he knew how to speak Sheliak or Tamarian, but he'd heard it enough since their capture to recognize when the cadence and tone were off.  As he grew, he found that each new language he mastered tended to make the next all the simpler as if each was a piece of a greater puzzle of polyglottic unity.

Once more, he rose to his feet, trying not to disturb his fresh wounds unduly. He was light headed enough and bleeding out now would help no one.  Carefully, he moved beside Sinead, taking a look at her PADD.  A translation protocol?  "Would have been nice if our benefactor would've just given us a translator," he grumbled as he studied the display, his mind piecing the translation together with what snippets of the Savi speech he'd heard, approximating tones, emulating the dialect.  Looking up at the guards, he reiterated, taking great care to pronounce the language precisely, hoping the syntax made sense, "<Your leader was your enemy. Listen. We can explain.>"

With a sigh, he added under his breath, "I speak the languages of almost every major power in the Alpha and Beta quadrants and then some.  Our luck we get kidnapped by someone completely new."

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #61
[ Ens. Nathaniel Isley | Scion's Nest | The Versant ]

A shot from one of the Ante’s guns came at them and Nathaniel braced himself for the hit, but all he felt was a wave of adrenaline and the shiver of his muscles. As he looked around the debris, there was a force field in place. Before him, a great dome of light shown, illuminating the dark room around them and causing him to squint as his eyes adjusted to the brilliance. The Radiant, probably—but she wasn’t here earlier! It was like suddenly, she was appearing out of nothing. He’d never seen anything quite so...miraculous.

He stood up, his weapon still in his hands, but he just...needed to see this. It was important that he bear witness, but he didn’t know why. In due time, he saw the figure and shape of a woman. It was important to witness this because it was the birth of life into this universe, he figured. She must have been replicated, or cloned—something about this didn’t look like the usual transporter. It was...beautiful. Whatever it was, it was beautiful.

The sound of Sinead speaking Savi jolted him out of his mesmerized state. He didn’t have the faintest idea what she said, but he figured that there were no words that would soothe the angered Antes. He ducked back down behind his cover again and took aim. Deacon, the hulking man he was, began speaking as well. Nathaniel still didn’t understand it. But he was ready to fire, focused entirely on the possibility of battle once more. He had his sights trained on one of the Antes in specific, seemingly leading the charge against the strange forcefield erected moments ago. This time, he would shoot to kill, only if they posed a true danger.

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #62
[ Captain Ives | Scion Nest | Main Research Hull | Precept-ship Versant ]
As mesmerising as the gradual coalescence of the Radiant might be, it was plain that the Scion's personal guard could bring down the forcefield any moment. Therefore, as a counter-point to the awe in which one might otherwise be, Jien Ives watched the resurrection of Heather McMillan with great trepidation - fearing for the lives of them all.

In an odd variation of a transporter sequence, as the containment field pulsed with energy, the prone form materialised, and in short order, Jien could see the Radiant take shape. In the meantime, the Savi were... not entirely impressed with the efforts of the present Starfleet officers as they tried to speak to them, to reach some kind of non-violent solution. Jien held little hope towards the endeavour, the guards likely picked for their loyalty to the late Admiral. Why would they listen to creatures that they felt were far beneath them? If one thing had become plain to Jien, it was the way in which these aliens thought themselves superior to all other species. In their eyes, they were all curious animals. To be studied and experimented upon. The disregard had been comlplete, as far as Jien knew, until he'd seen this Voice come to their aid.

Yet on the other side of the Nest, an Andorian seemed to be working on a means for escape. Jien saw this, and clenched his fists, eager to be free from his confinement at long last. The Betazoid was there, ready for when the stasis field dropped....

...and then it did, the release so sudden it made Jien's core twitch in animation. His morphogenic matrix was freed, and with an internal convulsion, Jien drew a shuddering breath. Zephyr Praise inoculated him against the lingering pain from his torment, while he was still recovering from the shift, and he nodded towards her while he attempted to shift his form - finally - after too long of staying in one shape. At least he had been allowed to shift, at the behest of his tormentor...

...but it took many seconds until he could make his matrix respond, momentarily fearing that he'd lost his other from. But then, as if from muscle memory, he managed... and she wore her female form once again. She was dressed in her uniform, and while the process had been unstable, she did found herself again. She could see, however, how her skin rippled across her hands, her matrix not having recovered quite yet, but she hoped that in time, she could make a complete recovery. At least the pain had subsided.

The disappearance of the stasis field meant that the Radiant's particles had been collected, and true enough, when Jien looked at the dome, the figure was complete.

The pulsing light of the dome continued it's work still, minute mist settling around the bare form. Jien stepped away from her prison and towards that dome, tilting her head to look at that face. For a moment, she was alarmed, because that face did not belong to Heather McMillan. Then she remembered the words of the Voice, about what the Ante had been forced to do in order to save her life, and Jien had to believe what she saw was just the result of the compromise - the compensation for the loss. The science of it all was beyond her, and time was short. Eventually that dome would vanish, and it would be time to flee.

"Isley," she called to Nathaniel, having seen - to her relief - that he appeared uninjured. "As soon as this thing is finished, and the containment field drops, I need you to carry her." Having given the order, Jien then directed her eyes to the Andorian.

"Officer," she called, not knowing the short-haired woman's name, "have you found a way out? We leave and take shelter in wait for the escape plan from the Voice. Yet if we don't hear from him, we might have to find our own way off this ship. Get that open, before the forcefield drops."

And then, as if switching of a light, the dome around Heather McMillan vanished - the reintegration complete. A glance towards the armoured Savi on the other side of the dome told him that they could not count on them changing their minds. They didn't even appear bothered to speak with Sinead and Deacon, thinking it beneath them to address the escaped lab rats that had killed their commanding officer. It was an admirable attempt to try and speak with them, but it was in their best interest to escape and hide.

"Officer Zephyr, you'll have to scan Heather on the way. We leave now," said Jien, stepping towards the Andorian and the path she'd found behind the debris. Jien's steps were measured, not trusting her matrix just yet, but the brisk pace was quick enough to get her across the accursed Nest. She turned her oaken eyes to Sinead and Deacon next. "Come! It's no use. We must leave, for they won't listen to us."

[ Echtand qi Versant | The Archive Access | Precept-ship Versant ]
"<How can you listen to them?>" demanded Sclergyn, her pistol still raised towards Echtand. "<Do you take their word over our own?>"

Echtand understood her point, and any other time, he'd agreed, but how could he make her understand when his conviction lay not entirely in scientific fact, but in memory, and in intuition? How was he supposed to tell her that he'd remembered his parents when he'd looked into the eyes of the Aspect Maker, and began to question things? How that look of reproach had made him recall their opposition towards the Scion Directive, and what it would lead to for the Antes? They had been old, his parents, and seen things no Antes that lived today had. What had they known, that made them risk their lives for their endeavour? Why would they defy the Code? In the years where he'd been with his Decataria, Echtand had hated them for their moronic, idealistic fight. They had risked their lives, and left him behind, and for what? A notion? An idea? A mere hypothesis without grounds?

No, there had to be something more. The unsaid was just beyond the entrance to the Vault.

Yet could he kill Sclergyn, who carried his unborn child, for his conviction?

In her eyes, he saw that she knew this. Her confidence lay in him not being able to kill her, because she had taken the thym.

"<I believe,>" he said as he came to stand still with his back towards the Valt, speaking quietly to her, "<that we were once scientists of a different kind. I believe that the Progenitors did not wish for us to carry on their legacy in the absurd fashion we do. I believe that the Correction Program is a lie, to feed the Flotilla, and that the Code has been changed to control us. We depend on the Code, more so than any other species I've studied. We depend on it because we believe it will spare us from another Cataclysm. We follow the Code to try and preserve our Archive, but once we decided to evolve ourselves, the Scions saw how they could use the Code to make us more efficient. We live as unknowing slaves to a doctrine not our own.>"

Sclergyn just shook her head. "<I am still not hearing any form of evidence, merely supposition.>"

Echtand sighed, closed his eyes for a moment, and slowly lowered his graviton weapon. He was a scientist. They all were, and yet what he said next was quite unrelated to science.

"<I think you and I have felt the truth... more so than other Savi,>" he said quietly, not entirely sure how to phrase it. "<When I began to study the language of the Federation, I also studied their societies, and learned about the way their myriad of cultures looked upon procreation. Since then, I have... not forced myself upon you. I have taken your wishes into consideration. Your consent... and willingness to procreate, gradually became the only way in which I wanted to be with you. And I found how... natural, it felt, in lack of a better description to my findings. This is not something I can prove or disprove as scientific fact... and I don't think you can either. And yet... I think... you may have felt it too.>"

Sclergyn was silent at first, even if her frown remained. "<So you mated with me like the primates do?>" As harsh as her words were, the phrasing a revolted accusation... her tone was off point. "<It proves nothing.>"

Echtand shook his head. "<The Code facilities dominance as the order in which we should breed. We have been taught to be as we are, and mate as we do, by the Code. Yet when you and I strayed from the texts... and found mutual respect, you were willing to take the thym for me, without contest.>"

Sclergyn's frown remained, but she was silent now. Echtand spoke anew. "<I received your name suggestions, I just couldn't respond,>" he said said, and stepped towards Sclergyn. "<You honour me, linguistics being the field that would name our child. Thank you.>"

"<That was before I learned what you've done,>" she warned, but her words were more quiet now.

Lights then lit her face, reflecting against her eyes. The iridescence of her black orbs were plainly seen, yet as captivated as Echtand might be, those lights were transporter sequences...

...and they were no longer alone.

"<Fire!>" came the call, and the antechamber to the Vault was riddled with graviton beams. Sclergyn cried out, and Echtand screamed.

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #63
[Lt Zephyr Praise | Scion Nest | Go-Time | Saving our Asses | Getting Out of Danger][/b]

Zephyr had never witnessed, before, what she did now.  The changing of the man to woman in front of her.  As a medical doctor she had read and researched man races for various projects or things that she needed to know so that she could treat just about anyone she came up against.  Still, it was really cool, for the young Doctor and Scientist to actually see the changes taking place in front of her.  To watch the skin ripple and change.  It wasn't as though they just changed their sex.  The bones, the muscles, the whole thing moved and changed.  She was slighter now, with lovely long hair and dark eyes that were the same as her male counterpart.  Her skin still that same somewhat asian look as it had been before, and yet she seemed more gentle.  Gentle and yet not because her eyes held a fierceness that really resonated with the young woman that was trying desperately to treat everyone. 

Zeph was just happy to be of use, to be able to heal people.  It had been a long time since she had been able to put her actual medical practices to work.  She had been more of scientist and researcher.  She could understand the Savi, the way their minds worked, and how things could go wrong so quickly given the opportunity. 

While she waited for Heather to be remade and while she waited for everything to finish up so they could leave, she felt weary.  Not really tired in the physical sense.  Sleeping next to the warmth and strength of Khorin had her sleeping very well.  But emotionally she was tired and she just wanted to curl up under a warm blanket and watch a movie.  Do something normal.  She didn't regret leaving the station and it was something she would eventually have to explain.  At least, to the Captain because she knew that when Ives eventually went to find out what kind of officer she was, and where she had been stationed she would see a big black area.  Zephyr had disappeared years ago, only to reappear right now.

The woman seemed better now, hopefully because of what Zeph had given her.  Ives began to bark orders around and Zeph smiled.  It was good that she was doing that.  It gave her purpose, drive, and it would allow the people to rally around her.  Zeph knew the mark of a true Captain and knew she was seeing one right now.  She shifted her attention to Shar across the deck who was trying to get things ready for them to get out of here.  She was glad for it because Zeph hadn't even thought of that being something they needed to do.  She supposed that was why they were a team.  Heather finished and the shield around her dropped.  Zeph stepped forward but the woman was already being held by another officer.  Ives explained that she would have to treat and scan on the way.

“Right.  Got it.” she turned on her heel and walked with the group towards Shar.  All the while she was scanning Heather's new form, what it was.. how it was, and collecting all sorts of information for herself.  As she did so she was checking to make sure that she wasn't in any real pain.  She didn't want Heather suffering, that much was for certain so if there was anything she could do and allow Heather a calm and swift recovery she would do it.

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #64
[ LtJr. Khelleshar sh'Zenne | Day 6| The Scion's Nest | The Versant ]

Attn: @Auctor Lucan @Triage  @BZ  @steelphoenix @FollowTomorrow

Shar endeavored herself to open the hatch that could gave her access to the ventilation ducts. While the metal shard was an improvement with respect to her previous circumstances, when she could only rely on her own hands, it was far from being a real tool. The situation didn't improve if she added to the mix the pressure of the Antes trying to tear down the forcefield that separated them from the abductees and the accumulated fatigue and tiny wounds and bruises of the day that began to make a dent in her. As she struggled with the last rivets, an unfamiliar voice deconcentrated her enough to make her drop the metal shard and land painfully on her rear. When she turned to see who was the one interrupting the limited time she had available, she found herself looking at an unknown woman, dressed in a red Starfleet uniform. The pins on her neck pointed that she possessed the rank of captain. The andorian looked at her confused for a moment, blinking slowly and trying to understand who she was. The brief glimpse she had had of Theurgy's CO had shown her a male humanoid with human-like traits of Asian descent. A man, not a woman. However, after a close inspection, she found a je ne se quoi in the firm line of her jaw and in the steel determination of her eyes that suggested that they both could be the same person. "Captain Ives" she guessed, doubt plain in her voice. She combed her short hair a single time before continued speaking. "Liutenant JG Shar, madam." Introduced herself brieftly before squatting down again next to the battered bulkhead and reinserting the scrap of metal into one of the tight rivets that still supported the metal plate. "There is an access to the ventilation ducts behind this plate, it will be a bit tight, but we can move through that tubes to one of the main corridors and try to make our way to the The Beas... to commander Blue's hideout. If the Savi keep actively pursuing us, we can keep moving through the ducts, it will be slower but possibly safer. To my knowledge, Commander Blue has been in them for days, under the radar of our enemies, so it will be the safest route to reach the main group or to wait till our ally could beam us there... " Accompanying that last sentence, the lid of the hatch emitted a metallic wail and fell to the side, leaving behind it the view of a narrow and unlit tube. Kelleshar couldn't stop her antennae from abandoning their everlasting position agaisnt her scalp and let them arched more naturally over her forehead. The rest of her face remained, however, imperturbable, frozen in the sour expression that was characteristic. The andorian peeked into the black entrance illuminating her surroundings with the soft glow of the padd attached to her wrist. "We need to crawl twenty yards, and take the first detour to the right after that. That will take us to one of the main maintenance tunnels. We can move more comfortably since there, captain. " The Andorian explained as she reviewed the route she had drawn in the Savi tablet. "I've shared that course in the other officers' padd, I'm going to advance and scout the path to the junction, madam," She enunciated confidently before stepping into the tube, crawling on hands and knees. When her slender figure had completely disappeared in the hatch, just to let her voice resonated again. "I will inform as soon as possible, but don't hesitate to follow me if the situation worsens"

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #65
[ Lt. JG Sinead O'Riley | Scion Nest | Main Research Hull | Precept-ship Versant ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan, @steelphoenix, @BZ, @FollowTomorrow & @Numen
The effort was truly in vain. Sinead was joined by Deacon, who tried adding his own skill at negotiation, and he seemed to speak the Savi language better than her. Yet, their words fell on deaf ears (where were the Savi ears?!?), and the Captain called on them to abandon any further attempts. “Yes, captain.” said Sinead and immediately turned, having made note of the strength of the forcefield, but she also pinned a security request of the cleansing beams that Echtand had used. Once everyone was through the escape tunnels discovered by Shar, Sinead activated the beams to prevent pursuit as she followed the rest. She'd recovered whatever usable weapons could be found and provided them to whomever was in need or able to wield them.

Acting as the self-appointed security cordon, Sinead positioned herself before the immediate threat and kept the captain directly behind her. Jien seemed to also place importance over the newly reconstituted woman, whom she did not recognize as the supposed Heather McMillan. Although she'd only glimpsed the personnel file for the woman, Sinead was quite certain this Heather looked nothing like what she saw in the records. Looking at the update on her PADD from Shar, the Bringloidi wondered at the wisdom of waiting for her. “Captain, p'haps we should no' wai' 'ere much longerh. There be too many o' th' Savi Guardsmen for us t'figh'.”

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #66
[ Ens. Nathaniel Isley | Scion's Nest | The Versant ]

“Isley,” rang out a voice so sweet and pure that it made him shiver, and he looked over to see...Ives! Ives, she was here and she was standing, and though her form seemed to ripple like water, she was at least whole.

He was given the order to carry her. He nodded his head to acknowledge his orders and approached the dome of light, putting his graviton weapon up to free up his hands. As if on cue, the light faded, and he found her in his arms.

She was startlingly light. He had been expecting just a little bit more mass, but it was like holding a pile of feathers. Regardless, he held her body in his arms like he held hope in his heart, because that’s what she was. He couldn’t let himself be too taken. But for a moment, he held the newly made woman in his arms and marveled at a science so advanced it seemed like magic.

He cradled her close and started moving towards the group, it seemed they had found a way out. Good, because they couldn’t stay long.
“Whichever order we go in, someone come up behind me. I can’t cover our rears and hold the missus at the same time.”

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #67
[ PWO Heather McMillan | Scion Nest | Main Research Hull | Precept-ship Versant ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan, @steelphoenix, @BZ, @FollowTomorrow & @Numen
It felt like she had been asleep for months. She had been somewhere else, heard a voice or a thought that had not been her own, then there were voices all around her, speaking a language she did not understand. Emotions she had never felt in her life were now ever present in her mind and her consciousness. She felt cold, and heavy, and weak, yet stronger...stronger than she had ever felt in her life. Who was she? What was she? Oh...she began to remember things. Her name...wait...what was her name??? Voices, she had to concentrate...why couldn't she see? What was going on? Were they fleeing a ship? What was the ship's name?

She realized though that she couldn't see, probably because her eyes were closed. The hair on her head felt heavy...was it always this heavy? Who was carrying her? Why was she being carried? Was there something wrong with the bed?

Finally she opened one eye to look at the handsome stranger carrying her, and for a moment she thought she saw a face that she recognized, but then her vision cleared as she opened her other eye, and saw the Romulan clearly, and she asked a question that she thought was extremely important and relevant to their situation at present, “Did I make the tea correctly?

How could she feel strong and so exhausted at the same time? She could move, but she didn't want to. Instead, she thought she'd wait until Mr. Fancy told her what's what. There was a woman with Oriental features nearby, and a woman with glowing blue-white eyes, but why did she feel the Oriental woman was important...hold on, did those pips mean she was a, “Captain?

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #68
[ Deacon | Day 6 | Scion's Nest | The Versant ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan  @Triage  @BZ  @Numen @FollowTomorrow 

Deacon made a sour face as his efforts to broker peace, in spite of how counter to his own training it might be, went unrewarded.  These earless cretins clearly had no appreciation for what they had just accomplished and what more they could unleash.  Even the kzinti had learned to give the monkeys their time.  He curled his lip in frustration.  This was not the time for that comparison.

Casting a glance over his shoulder as the captain spoke, he turned a knowing glance towards the female beside him and, as if of a single mind, he echoed her actions in perfect symmetry, darting through the wreckage of the nest to snare anything that could be of use -- weapons, technology, even the inscrutable.  There was no time to be selective.  They would need to have all available options when and if they found safe haven again and he was not one to overlook opportunities.  But there was something he made particular effort to grab -- the biosuits that clothed their fallen.

An instinctive revulsion clung to his gut as he slipped the suits from the bodies as rapidly as he could.  Kzinti had a marked dislike for tampering with the dead -- something he'd analytically considered odd given their propensity for killing -- but he could not shake the illogical sense of dread that had been ingrained into him by the culture in which he'd been raised.  The dead could linger in their possessions and haunt the living.  He could only hope the kills fresh enough and their deaths worthy enough to be welcomed by the Fanged God... or whatever god they'd clung to.  The need of the pride was too great.  Suits in hand, damaged though they may be, he spared another moment to liberate any additional weaponry that crossed his path.

He circled back towards the others, motioning for the group to move ahead, recognizing his own size as a clear obstacle towards navigation.  Better that the smaller members of the team move ahead and set their course.  As the captain took her own position in the line, he handed her one of the suits.  "They hide our biosigns."  The second he draped over the female carried by the romulan that had been called Isley.  The matter of camouflage aside, only the matter of offense remained.  Slipping one of the phasers into the captain's possession, he added quietly, "Nonlethal to the grey ones, but better than nothing until we can seek alternatives."

The shield would not avail them much longer and as the last of the team slipped into the vents, he too slipped out of sight, silencing that part of him that demanded he stay and fight.  Now was not the time for foolish kzinti bravado.  The mission had been accomplished. Sometimes it was that bravado that snatched defeat from the jaws of victory.  Now he had to rely on his monkey companions to show him the way.

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #69
[ Echtand qi Versant | The Archive Access | Precept-ship Versant ]
The antechamber to the Vault lay silent.

Pale skin rent. Thick blood spreading over the deck. Bodies clad in black. Suits and armour, all sheared. Dim lights flickering, control panels destroyed. Sparks raining, reflected against black orbs. Unseeing eyes behind shattered visors. There was little movement in the haze. Smoke from the damages thick in the neox air. The gate to the Vault loomed high above it all, indifferent to what had happened. The Archive had no entity, even if it had led many lives, surviving the folly of its keepers countless times.

"<You should not have come here.>"

Weakly, a pale hand rose through the smoke, coated in blue blood. It reached for one of the faces, but it stopped. It had been stayed to preserve that countenance from the touch of cerulean ichor. It did not deserve to be stained, the sight of it ruined. As it were, framed by the haze of the aftermath, few things could compare to it. Especially, when those black orbs blinked, and the answer came.

"<You're wrong,>" said Sclergyn, and in her eyes were the reflection of her tablet. She wasn't even looking at him - focused on her task.

"<No,>" said Echtand, propped up against the bulkhead as he was, the wound through his abdomen making him grimace. "<I know I am right. If you doubt me still... why did you..?>"

"<I mean that I should have come here. Otherwise, you'd be dead,>" said his mate, unhurt, and treating him as best as she might. She did not look emphatic towards his plight, the doubts still there. She glanced up from her datapad for a moment. "<As for your belief in this unfounded hypothesis of yours - this claim with little merit - I have no means to disprove you without clear facts. You have challenged the Code, with no evidence, and I suppose there is but one way to counter such a challenge. Nothing less will clear your emotive doubts. It is stated in the Code that all challenges must be addressed.>"

Echtand knew then, that he had chosen right in picking Sclergyn for his mate. Slowly, he turned his head to look at the gates to the Vault. "<It is stated,>" he said, when he realised what she meant. "<I should have told you. I should not have done this alone.>"

"<No,>" she replied without pause, shaking her head, "<I would have stopped you, reported you, and I would not have taken the thym for you. On your feet. Here, I will help you stand.>"

The makeshift treatment of his wound finished, Echtand realised it was time. Despite the numbing pain, he reached up and took Sclergyn's hand, and struggled to find his balance. She supported him, running his arm over her shoulders, and they turned to the gate together. They stepped over the bodies of fellow Antes to reach the Vault, and once there, Echtand put his graviton pistol aside on the access console, and laid his less bloodied hand against the cool surface.

"<I, Echtand qi Versant, Commanding Officer of the tertiary Precept-ship, request access to the Archive, under the authorisation of the Code, and in the memory of the Progenitors.>"

There was a whirr from the console, and in the dreaded seconds that followed, Echtand thought he had erred.

Then, the gate opened for them. He shared a glance with Sclergyn, picked up his weapon, and then they stepped through.

Once inside, the access point to the Flotilla's Archive was just a barren area, but this was expected. The flat bulkheads revealed nothing, but the Vault did not possess something as archaic as physical records. No, the Archive was a network of incorruptible data, and in the node which they stood, they were able to access anything they needed. The fact of the Archive's transparent storage records was key to its merit. The problem was, that the records of changes had been hidden for Savi with inferior access. The Code's current edition was available to all, and the changes always supposed to be communicated. No changes had been announced, nor put on public record, since before Echtand was born.

"<I request the history of the Code,>" he announced in a loud, clear voice, and the Vault answered him. Without delay, the information sprung out of nothingness, data accumulating in a timeline that spread around the two Ante mates. Dates, words and images flashed before them as the revision history unfolded. It was all there, some records still preserved from the time before the Flotilla, when they had conducted their research on Sa. Their lost home planet. The Cataclysms had erased far too much of the early Code, but as Echtand and Sclergyn gazed at the information around them, the common denominators were plainly there. They were High Class. They were of the elite scientists of their species, practised at reading sentences at a rapid pace. Their method of reading didn't just focus on getting through the words, but understanding what they were reading as well. Echtand raised a hand against the shimmering information around them, and with his bloodied fingertips, he narrowed his focus on the latest revision history of the Code.

Sclergyn's hand was also raised in the same direction, and together - the sceptic and the believer - they learned the truth about their people.

OOC: Another post due soon. :)

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #70
[ Captain Ives | Leaving the Scion Nest | Main Research Hull | Precept-ship Versant ]
It was not just Jien Ives' morphogenic matrix that was in turmoil after the days spent in the Scion's Nest, the consequences obvious in how her form did not completely solidify. No, approaching the exit that the Andorian had found, she wanted nothing rather than flee, and cover as much distance as possible between herself and the area of her torment. Though she knew she had to restrain herself. To keep her head level and her wits about her, even though her animal instinct was the complete opposite. She knew far too little of her own species - less than the Savi did - but like any other solid, she certainly had a natural fight or flight instinct. She balled her hands into fists, her jaws clenched, and listened. She forced herself to, since it was expected of her.

While Sinead moved to join them, collecting things, and Deacon did the same - if that truly was the Kzinti she'd come to know - Jien had listened to the Andorian's words. Shar, as she introduced herself, had suggested that they'd use the maintenance tunnels and that she'd scout ahead. She mentioned a hideout, and without knowing much more, it seemed like a good destination. Jien did not know who Commander Blue was, but if she'd been able to hide there for a long time, it might be their safest alternative. The Andorian even suggested that she'd scout ahead, and that they were to follow whenever required.

"Well done, Junior Lieutenant," said Jien, and nodded, seeing her vanish into the darkness. A voice behind her made her turn around, and she saw Deacon there, holding two suits and draping one over the bare Radiant in Isley's arms. She was told the suits masked biosigns, and she supposed it made sense, else they would have a harder time entering the Nest undetected. Zephyr was there too, scanning Heather, who was both talking incoherently and not looking like herself. It was alarming, to say the least, but there was naught more Jien could do for the Radiant at the time, so she tried to push the concerns about Heather aside. One thing was certain. It seemed evident that Jien only had this opportunity to get into one of the damaged suits. "Thank you."

Her voice tight, there was no time for propriety, and it had already been lost given the state they had found her in. She shifted her form, which took longer than before her captivity, so that she only wore regular Starfleet underwear. While she did so, she worked her feet into the suit, deftly donning it as quickly as she could. Once the magnetic seals clasped shut, she took the phaser from Deacon and checked its' settings. "Noted. My thanks," she said, and once she could look the tailed man in the eyes, she was certain it was the Kzinti. Just like Isley, the Savi had altered him, for no other reason than curiosity, as far as Ives knew. She just didn't know what to say to the former Priest. Nothing seemed adequate.

Isley spoke up, about needing someone to cover him if he was to carry the Radiant, and the comment made Jien turn to look at Semathal's personal guard, who were engaged in communication with other teams, by the looks of them, and two were still working on bringing down the force field. There was only a matter of time, and this was the only opportunity they had to escape.

"I will take point," said Jien, not about to take a backseat role in the escape after her crew had sacrificed so much to free her, and Sinead came to position herself next to the opening. "O'Riley, you go next, then, Isley and... Zephyr? Keep the Radiant under observation. I have learned that their abilities might be key to deal with the threat of the Infested. Keep her alive. Deacon, you go last, make sure we aren't pursued. Like Sinead says, we cannot linger here for much longer... so we move out now. "

Without further delay, Jien entered the crawlspace, her eyes and her phaser primed towards the darkness ahead, her suit torn by Semathal's claws, and a loyal crewman's blood lining it. She pushed forth, having to slow down to not let her sense of flight overcome her reasoning and training. There was no sign of the Andorian named Shar yet, and she had no idea what O'Riley had set up for the personal guard they left behind. Jien just knew that they had a chance to hide somewhere in wait for the Voice to finish whatever he was doing for his people. As far as Jien was concerned, she didn't trust him. Because of what she'd been through, she wasnt' sure how she could.

As rife as the tension was, their lives at risk and their discovery pending, Jien lost track of time there in the maintenance tunnels of the Versant. She was given directions after catching up with Shar, the dim light revealing the crawling Andorian ahead after some time. Hushed voices. Small displays on their wrists lighting up their faces. Directions suggested, as they navigated the guts of the Savi dreadnought. The distances which they had to over seemed preposterous, larger as the ship was than any vessel in the Federation. Eventually, however, the silence was broken.

Sounds in the tunnels. Movements. Shouting in an alien tongue. Metal noises. Armoured knees and gauntlets scraping the insides of the tunnels. They were no longer alone. Somewhere, down either of the intersections ahead, the search teams were closing in. If they were armoured, then there was little chance of stunning them effectively. Jien clenched her teeth together, and she needn't tell the officers behind her. Waste of breath, and noises made, when their silence may save them. She did not have to explain that they may have to fight for their lives.

Yet the dreadful, shuffling noises were soon cut off by a voice.

It spoke in the language of the Savi, and there was no telling what it said. Jien frowned and glanced towards the others behind her. "Try to find some kind of universal translator system on that thing," she whispered to O'Riley, her voice drowned out by the booming announcement, which was heard throughout the entire ship. She checked the power level on her phaser then, trying to hear the search team ahead over the voice.

[ Echtand qi Versant | Level 1 Bridge | Armoured Bridge Module | Precept-ship Versant ]
The tall doors slid open, and Echtand qi Versant limped unto bridge of the Versant, his face contorted by pain and determination.

There were over thirty Savi present, including three Scions, and as mixed as the reaction was - ranging from outrage to quiet loyalty - one thing was constant. Sclergyn's presence, right beside him, armed with two graviton pistols since Echtand couldn't carry it any more. She was there, as if the xenobiologist had become a personal guard, and when one of the Scions moved forth, she checked it with one of her pistols, her stare offering no compromise. Echtand gave the Scion officer a passing, unreadable glance, while he continued towards the command chair. Just a little further...

When he finally made it there, and sat down, he realised that even the command chairs had been fitted for Scions. And while hit tall frame was diminutive to that of a Scions, he sat straight. He was not interested in the reports and words of the present Savi, letting the thick silence linger, while he reached for the control to the intercom system. His bloodied hand shook, but he pressed the touch screen control, and a whirr told him that it was time.

"<This is Echtand qi Versant, your new Commanding Officer in accordance to the Code,>" he said, trying to keep his voice clear and true, and not reveal how weakened he was by his wound. "<I am an Antecedent. This is what we are called, now that the Scion Directive has determined our future. We are the old, inferior caste of our people, oft reduced to labour which the Scions never carry out. This... is our fate, until we no longer serve any purpose, and the Scions are sufficient in number to carry out all the research in our scientific fields, and preserve the great work of the Progenitors. At some point, in a not so distant future, the Flotilla will be completely automated, and the Scions will take our legacy into the millennia to come. We will become better, since the Antecedents are insufficient. This, is stated in the Code, along with all other ways in which we conduct ourselves and carry out our research. It is stated.>"

"<It is stated,>" came the affirmation from most of the present Savi on the bridge.

Having made this declaration, Echtand swallowed, and shook his head a little to clear it from vertigo. He sensed movements at his side, and he knew that it was Sclergyn. He looked at her, the truth spoken, and she - the sceptic - smiled faintly to him.

Now, was the time to reconcile with all the things he had done. He had a lot to say, well aware that the specimens were still at large.

[ Denary Biolab | Main Research Hull | The Versant ]

Elsewhere on the ship, in the biolabs, an Ovri mother was examining the small stasis pod which held her single egg, protected by armed members of the Theurgy and Endeavour crew. Little did they know about the battle fought in the adjacent lab, where Commander Nerina gone to Sto-Vo-Kor, since the Ovri had lingered where she was. While she examined the stasis unit, and the voice on the intercom had fallen silent, Hylota Vojona happened to press the top of the device, and a holo-projector activated.

It caused the figure of a humanoid to appear in the air above it. A projection of the child inside the egg, as it would appear when it reached maturity. A tall, wide-shouldered, unprecedented cross-breed between Ovri and Klingon. Black of eye and forehead creased in proud ridges. Defined in muscle tone and yet sleek, with minute scales - coarse and gleaming. As the image of Maal's son looked back at its mother in dark laboratory, the voice on the intercom was heard again - the words now deciphered by one of the NCO's tablets.

[Yet if you examine the revision history that I now broadcast across the whole ship, available in every terminal and lab, you will find that our Code has been corrupted. Defiled by the ambitions of the Scion Directive, and that for our whole lives, we have been made to think ourselves lesser than we are.]

At this point, clear sounds of fighting was heard across the transmission, a firefight breaking out - the outcome unknown.

[ Lieutenant ThanIda zh'Wann | Unknown Medical Bay | The Versant ] Attn: @Masorin @Brutus @chXinya @Absinthe
Whatever words Shall might have had about being denied access to the Andorian experiment's results, they had been drowned out by the voice on the intercom. The present medical officers had been riveted by the words, and Ida raised her eyes while she listened, hearing the battle rage on what might be the bridge of the Versant.

The words still came, even while the battle lasted in the background. The Voice of the Savi would not be silenced.

[Once, we were not taught to take what we wanted, to examine what we wished, or to dominate while we bred. We did not judge our brood by the indicators in their infantile, undeveloped brains. We did not subject them to a lifetime of slavery when they were found inadequate. There were no High Class or Low Class Savi in the Flotilla. There were only the Vigilant of S-Sa...]

There was a pause, and something like coughing was heard, the voice wet as it resumed.

[...but we have lost our identity in our scientific achievements. Blindly, at one point in our recent history, a number of us thought we were not enough, and had to become more. The problem, lay in how our creation - the Scion caste - used our short lifespans against us, and turned us into this shadow of what we once were. They changed the Code, to control us, and to make us take the lifeforms of the Galaxy aboard our ships, just to feed the machinery of their ambitions, and to make sure no species would be their equal.]

Ida looked towards the two present Antecendents, and it was impossible to see what they were thinking, behind those wide, black eyes.

[ Adjacent to the Machine Intelligence Labs | The Versant ]

In a lab close to the Machine Intelligence Labs, a firefight has ensued between Savi and abductees, while Thea's positronic brain was being connected to the Versant.

At the beginning, when the voice of Echtand qi Versant had been heard over the intercom, the firefight had continued, but as the announcement was drawing to an end, someone among the Savi had raised their hand and called a cease-fire. So, while the words were still heard, the two opposing factions were holding their weapons raised, eyes along the sights, and ready to open fire once more. An uneasy cease-fire held, while the Voice of the Savi spoke to the crew of the Savi dreadnought.

[Inadvertently, we have almost caused ourselves a new Cataclysm, loosing ourselves in our achievements. Perhaps it's too late, since the children of our genius are all around us. Some of them may be at fault, and some may not - unknowing of the High Council's design as they might be. As your Commanding Officer, I demand for all fighting to cease immediately. We were once a people of peace and curiosity, not control and corruption. We needn't fight, but examine the Code as it was meant to be, and accept that the Scion Directive was not made our future by general consensus in the Flotilla.]

Thea's eyes moved between the opposing Savi in the laboratory, processing the information while Blue Tiran worked behind her.

[Lay down your arms, against each other, and against the specimens still aboard. For in this hour, we determine who we really are.]

[ Echtand qi Versant | Level 1 Bridge | Armoured Bridge Module | Precept-ship Versant ]
On the bridge, Echtand raised a trembling hand to his face, and wiped his lips.

Sclergyn was at his side, pressing a hand to to her side, but still holding one of her pistols raised against one of the remaining Savi.

Other Antes also there, armed, and protecting their Commanding Officer. Rallied by heart or Code, they had stood with the Voice, while he spoke to the crew. Echtand was almost finished.

"<My only command,>" he said to his crew, fighting the urge to cough again, "<is that you all examine the evidence presented, and see the truth about ourselves... before we make any further mistakes. Stand by... for further orders. Echtand out.>"

Then, with a numb hand, he switched off the intercom. The only reason he had faith in his proclamation, was that his people would not reject scientific truth. Unlike most species they had examined, they had not been prone to biased opinion before the Scion Directive, but accepted proven fact over fear. It was, perhaps, one of their most redeeming qualities, even if it would never be enough to forgive all that they had done.

He could hear Sclergyn say his name. He felt her hand on his shoulder, felt her squeeze it tight, and he wanted to look up at his mate, as if to learn if he had done well.

Only he couldn't. For the hand of his mate was all that held him upright.

Echtand's research had come to an end, but perhaps... his discovery would change everything for his people.

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #71
Angry people want you to see how powerful they are. Loving people want you to see how powerful you are.
- Chief Red Eagle

Freedom is the right of every sentient being.
- Optimus Prime

[ Lt. JG Sinead O'Riley | Leaving the Scion Nest | Main Research Hull | Precept-ship Versant ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan, @steelphoenix, @BZ, @FollowTomorrow & @Numen
Sinead's head whipped around when the captain declared that she would take point. The former Security officer wanted to offer protest, her lips even parting, her emotions and feelings clear, for a change, as her control over her emotions briefly slipped, before she pursed her lips once more and spoke not a word. At least she heeded the Bringloidi's words. She cast a glance at Heather, wondering at the woman's value and import, but all things that could be found out later. If the captain decreed so, then Sinead would protect Heather with her life.

Deacon had assisted by retrieving more weapons and even clothing for the captain and Heather. A tactically sound move, since stealth was what they needed the most.

The crawlspace was going to make it tricky for Nathaniel to carry Heather through, but she supposed if anyone could carry a Radiant and crawl through tiny places, a Romulan could do it. Plus, she read that Radiants were very light, lighter than they appeared to be. Silent as a ghost, Sinead bent and moved with cat-like grace, as she stalked behind Jien, rifle in hands, she quickly shifted to input commands into the PADD at Jien's request, and she got a text-only translation of all that was being spoken in Federation Standard and shared her PADD with the captain. In the low light, her silvery-blue eyes shown clear and bright, almost creating a reflection off the PADD"s surface.

At Echtand's urging and command to cease fighting, Sinead allowed a small smile to play on her lips, hoping that perhaps for a change, diplomacy might work out. The sounds of fighting appeared to have slowed to a halt, perhaps listening to Echtand. All the same, she moved ahead of the captain and studied their surroundings, watchful for the approach of anything.

[ PWO Heather McMillan | Leaving the Scion Nest | Main Research Hull | Precept-ship Versant ]
She felt something drape over her body, and that was when she realized she was as bare as the day she was born, for all to see. Her face warred with the appropriate reaction of relief and sheer mortification that she was naked before the captain and so many others. On the one hand, she rather enjoyed being free of the weight and cover of heavy fabrics, but on the other hand, she had been raised in England all her life, and had developed a strong sense of modesty that often was at odds with her Radiant nature...


She smiled and murmured her thanks, as she gently lifted the clothes off herself, which had some serious damage and ichor. They were drawing close to a crawlspace, and the Romulan was still carrying her. “I-I can you, sir.” said the tiny blonde as she slid herself from the man's hold, losing her balance and fell heavily to the ground.

She gasped and pushed up, surprised at her own weight, and also the strength within her. She could feel the light within her body, but her skin felt thick...too strong. Once she was back on her feet, she slid into the suit, which barely fit her, as she was much shorter. She held the Romulan's arm lightly as they journeyed through the crawlspace, all wary for pursuit or an ambush ahead. Then the booming voice began to speak. The blonde moaned softly and covered her ears, feeling intimidated and frightened. “Wh-what is happening?” she asked.

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #72
[ Lt (jg) Sarresh Morali | Unknown Medical Bay | Precept-ship Versant ] Attn: @chXinya @Masorin @Absinthe @Auctor Lucan 

Sarresh was finding it harder and harder to keep track of things in the aftermath of their raid to acquire the Omega Device. Having the most volatile and dangerous particle in known creation hanging from his shoulder had a way of ruining one's ability to focus on the present moment. Too much 'what if' and 'oh please no' kept circling about in his head.

On the other hand watching the male Andorian lose his control and pull one of the doctors aside, babbling threats about research on Andorians did have a way of refocusing one's attention.  One minute Shall (Sarresh believed that was the man's name) had been at a nearby console. The next, he too had a gun against one of the doctors heads, pulling him away and demanding some research on Andorian's that the Savi had conducted. Sarresh didn't know what any of that was about and he didn't care.

"Now is not the time, people," he barked, angry before being interrupted by a series of comm messages, and then one very, very loud, very long message. Everyone in the room seemed to freeze up, and stare, listening to the voice of Echtand qi Versant. For a moment, the woman on the table, the angry pair of Andorians, even the device hanging from Sarresh's shoulder was forgotten. The voice over the speakers made its case, in what seemed to Sarresh to be a slow, measured pace. Labored almost. A knot of worry built in the pit of Sarresh's stomach. This...this could go one of two ways, and one wasn't too bad, but the other was...well.

The voice stopped, giving its final orders, and Sarresh looked around the room, slowly. He met Jacks' gaze, then Ida and Shall's, though both seemed to be locked in almost a staring contest of their own. Then he looked to the two Antes, the doctors in the room. They looked shell-shocked. Sarresh had seen it before, in other faces, other cultures (ones he couldn't even properly remember). A huge chunk of their world view - from what the time traveler gathered - had just been called into question.

And no one was moving. No one was doing anything.

"Okay, people," Sarresh said slowly, filling the sudden silence with his own voice, going for clear and collected. He slowly lowered his firearm and held his arms out to the side, making a gesture that he hoped came over as calming. "Let's take a breath. your big boss man just laid a wallop of information on you and that's going to take time to process. about we stabilize the lady on the table as best you can, while we -" he gestured to the Starfleet personnel, "let you work unmolested. Once she's not going to die right away, it sounds like you guys have a lot of reading to do, and I don't want to keep you from doing that. So lets...let's play nice, like that Echtand chap said, eh? Sound good?"

In all honesty Sarresh didn't care one bit about what the Savi eventually decided to do about themselves. He just wanted to get off the damn ship in one piece, and get back to the one person in this whole damn timeline that mattered to him. That might be the one saving grace of the past few days; there was no doubt in Sarresh's mind about how he felt toward Ryuan Sel. He just had to get back to her first, and that meant calming these two alien doctors down.

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #73
[ Ens. Nathaniel Isley | Leaving the Scion Nest | Main Research Hull | Precept-ship Versant ]

The ragtag group of officers began down the maintenance tunnels, and Isley, knowing the jeffries tubes aboard the Theurgy, thought the trip would be short, cramped, and quiet. He was fortunate to get two out of three correct.

The journey was terribly long. Though he did not mind watching over his charge, lifting her when she fell and offering his support, the pressing silence and stillness of the air would drive him crazy. At any moment they could find themselves ambushed. His heart pounded every time he saw a shadow that looked like an alcove or another hallway. But nothing came. It was a long journey full of nothing and that was almost worst than an ambush in some ways.

Then, noise. Isley had fallen into the trap of reliving they were safe, perhaps, when he heard the shuffling of armor. Then...a voice? An announcement?

The language was too alien, so he did not understand any of the words spoken. Even the tone was strange, but he had the impression it was an announcement. He had no PADD, nothing to translate with, so he remained silent. Sinead had a PADD, which he gravitated towards, reading from a distance.

“...It’s a call for peace.” He whispered to Heather, “The Savi are having a change in command, and he’s trying to call for a ceasefire.” He explained as succinctly as he could. Heather would need the in-depth at a point in time where he wasn’t carrying the radiant around.

He did not know if Echtand would be successful. He didn't know if he would even still be alive, since the wet sound of his voice did not sound normal nor healthy. He just held hope that it would, and prepared for the worst.

Re: Chapter 04: True Nature [ Day 06 | 0900 hrs. ]

Reply #74
[ LtJr. Khelleshar sh'Zenne | Day 6| The Scion's Nest | The Versant ]

Attn: @Auctor Lucan @Triage  @BZ  @steelphoenix @FollowTomorrow

Shar paused for a moment to catch her breath. The next intersection was barely three meters ahead and, like all the previous intersections, it was brighter than the rest of the crawlspaces, with thin stripes of light on each of the different corridors' apertures. She let herself felt, leaned her back against one of the walls, her legs slightly clenched, so that the curve of the corridor folded around her body as if it were a bed. She had always liked small spaces, especially if the light was dim and there were hardly any sound that could heard. The Andorian pushed the hair from her face and allowed herself to close her eyes for a bit. She was exhausted. Her joints ache. Dozens of small scratches on her fingers stung each time she rested her hands on the floor plates to keep crawling through the cramped tube. Without opening her eyes, she rested one of her bruised hands on the side of her belly. She ran her lean fingers over the smooth surface of the Savi suit until their tips felt a rounded, tiny shape. Shar bit the inside of her cheeks. She had hoped to die in the Scion's nest. When the platform had collapsed under her feet and she began to fall into the void, the instinct for survival had dominated her, but now... now all she could think was that could had been a liberation. She would have got rid of duty, the anguish, the doubts. But it would have been the easier way and Shar never had the chance to choose the simplest option. Her people believed that the shen gender was ruled by the Water Guardian. She must be guided by a Storm Bringer. Her antennas faced each other, her amusement hidden to anyone else except herself in the dark. That hilarity didn't las long, due her belly clamped under her slender fingers and she grimanced as an answer. She opened her eyes and sighed. It wasn't the time to stop. She couldn't lose a minute longer than necessary.

The rest of the group was outlined in the corridor, just a few steps from her position. With a low groan, Shar crouched down  again and advanced to the next intersection. In the moment she straighten herself in the middle of the juction, she heard them. Noises of armor rattling, hasty footsteps, the low buzz of charged weapons. She remained motionless, as if she had just discovered that she was walking on thin ice, and it had began to crack under her weight. The light of the crossroad dazzled her. The echo of the corridors confused the direction of the sounds. The enemies were approaching and she was simply petrified. Suddenly, the Padd of her wrist began to buzz and  emitted a baritone voice. The translator activated itself after the first couple of words and Shar thought she recognized the voice of his ally, from that "Moby". However he sounded more plaintive, weaker and pained. And at the same time, firmer, resolute. Shar understood the words, but didn't find full sense of what he was telling. There were many variables that she didn't know in that speech to fully seize it. But they gave them time. The soldiers who surrounded them hesitated hearing the words of their ally and didn't take action as froze as her. That gave her time. Time for her eyes to adjust to the contrast of light and shades. There were Antes on her right and in front of her. With the rest of her team behind her, there was only one option left. She turned her head slightly to his left, to the empty tube and, when the voice on her wrist interrupted the speech by a gurgling cough, Shar dove in that direction.She crawled upside down a stretch, full body stuck to the floor. And she waited. The voice of her wrist fell silent and that silence spread in the crawlspace. Slowly, almost afraid, the Andorian sat up to look at the junction again. The Savi soldiers still didn't move. Shar thought she could see doubt in their strange black eyes. Slowly, very slowly, the shen crouched, not knowing how to react. "Zztann" she whispered.

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