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Topic: Day 05 [1707 hrs.] Scrying through the Storm Front  (Read 1040 times) previous topic - next topic

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Re: Day 05 [1707 hrs.] Scrying through the Storm Front
Reply #25
Lt. Cmdr Vivian Martin |  Security Centre | Deck 07 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy  ]   Attn: @TWilkins @fiendfall @Top Hat @Auctor Lucan @steelphoenix

Vivian listened to Nicander as he told her about The Blackness, the source of these parasites, the more he told her about the origin of this threat the more her mind started to work, it continuing to do so ever after the Doctor had moved on to address other people in the room, although she did spot the look Ducante had given her, as if to say he would kick her out if she didn't reign herself in.

While she kept her expression neural and would admit she had perhaps been a little unprofessional at first, she was justified in what she had said to the prisoner. She also found it rather ironic considering the fact that she at least had been asking questions that would advance their research and understanding of the parasites, unlike Ducote himself who had spent the entire interview so far wasting time by asking the man questions he had already answered before numerous times, which gained them nothing and served no purpose whatsoever, which was the entire point of this interview. In that regard he was being a bigger waste of space in this interrogation so far than she was....not that she would say such a thing out load or even imply it with a look, he was the XO after all. Instead she simply gave a slight nod of her hear in understanding, opting to be the bigger person.

However then Hathev came over to speak with her and while she could understand the woman's reasoning to an extent, she was at least the same rank as the Vulcan. "With all due respect I think was justified in my questions and the right to answers given the circumstances and I have them now, there'll be no more out of me on the subject. I would however like to point out that I am not emotionally compromised considering the fact that I am also asking questions that actually have scientific merit that could gain us an advantage against our enemy, which is my job as the Chief Science Officer of this ship. I would appreciate that if you took that into consideration as well." She whispered back in a soft, neutral tone so that nobody else could overhear them.

"As for my own issues, I've got far too many things to do as the new CSO at the moment to take time out of my day to talk about them all, but I do appreciate the offer, perhaps one day I might even take you up on it." she added.

Luckily that seemed to be the end of the women's conversation as Hathev returned her attention to Nicander. Vivan meanwhile returned her thoughts to what Nicander had said about The Blackness, her mind going over everything that she had been told until she heard Vael speak up and raised her head to listen to him.

She couldn't help but smile at his comment about the parasites having a trans-temporal quality to them, it was something that she had indeed pondered briefly clearly not as much as Vael had. Still she nodded at him when he mentioned her and smiled to herself, she had definitely made the right choice is choosing him as one of her assistant chief's.

She listened to Vael as he seemed to address everybody else in the room, coming up with some pretty good solutions to their problems. Forget being an assistant chief in the science department, the man could be a diplomat given the way he addressed them all.

Turning her attention back to Nicander after Vael was done speaking, it was her turn to speak up. "Doctor, it seems to me that when it comes to dealing with the parasites face to face the light is our best weapon and where we should be focusing our main research however I'm curious about the source of these parasites, The Blackness from what you've said about it, sounds like The Zone of Avoidance and the Great Attractor." Vivan said, more a statement than a question, but still pausing long enough to think for a second before speaking again. "Do you know where it is and if so could there be a way to seal off that region of space from the rest of the galaxy somehow? Or at least use some kind of light enhanced shielding system to create a barrier to contain the parasites within it, sort of like the sarcophagus Humans used on Earth over the old Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant to contain the radiation after it exploded way back when? she asked.

"It might not do anything to help us deal with the parasites already here but at the very least it would prevent more of them from showing up. Even if it did't contain them forever it would at least buy us some more time if we could figure something out."  
  • Last Edit: August 21, 2019, 12:15:06 AM by Kinvarus

Re: Day 05 [1707 hrs.] Scrying through the Storm Front
Reply #26
[ Doctor Lucan cin Nicander | Security Center | Deck 07 | USS Theurgy ]
Attn: @TWilkins @Top Hat @fiendfall @Kinvarus @steelphoenix
The new First Officer appeared willing to consider compromises as well, to his credit, and Lucan gave his question about other means of detection proper thought before he answered. "To my knowledge, there are no other means to scry other Hosts than through the abyss. The only time my infested self was able to do so was when facing Sonja Acreth directly in her cell. Then, the two could commune wordlessly, using the blackness as a channel of some kind. This wasn't possible unless they were in the same room, though. As for what other Hosts can see through me, I was restricted to sight and sight alone. It might be they are less able to use me as well now that Heather has restored me to whom I used to be."

This answer would likely leave Commander Ducote bereft of choice. The mission took precidence. Lucan knew this, and took a deep breath while his successor in sickbay began to speak, advocating against the farsight. Of course he would.

'Mister' Nicander? he thought idly as he listened, finding it unfitting of the Betazoid to strip him of his doctorate. As if he had become less than he were. Since he'd been a Doctor before he came to Starfleet, and given his rank, he was likely superior to the man. Hardly relevant, however, and he decided to take it in stride. He merely nodded slowly at the suggestion to wear the ARA if they were going to follow through with the farsight, and he began to ponder what safeguards there might be to utilise...

Then, however, the Vulcan named Hathev went so far as to say that he was a former Starfleet officer, which made him raise his eyebrows at her. He was wearing a spotless new uniform, wasn't he? Were other victims to alien infestations bereft of rank entirely? Stripped of doctorate and station as a Lieutenant Commander, was he? And they had the gall to wonder why he feared what they might do to him? By the winds... Still, when speaking to Ducote, she allegedly harboured no such intent. Then what was the purpose of stripping him from rank and uniform? He decided to ignore the slight, and told himself he had no reason to be concerned.

He was still pondering what might be done to protect himself and the interrogators, distracted as he might have been by the offences, when the one named Vael spoke anew. The attractive man seemed to have earned his position by merit, for when he began to speak of his theories, Nicander stopped slowly pacing his cell and looked at him, eyebrows rising. Trans-temporal quality... Yes... A chroniton wavelength!

"That's excellent thinking..." his pale grey eyes darted over the deck as he added his own immediate thoughts. The new wind of revelation stirred him as he stepped up to the forcefield.  "That could be a missing factor. Yes, my scientific knowledge of temporal phenomena is stunted, but that might be it! It would explain how... Indeed, how did the Niga paradox begin? Was the first Infested a random person, because of growing proximity to the chaos plane, or was he or she selected by paradox as well? Why could Sonja Acreth so readily create the temporal breach? How could the Calamity come here from the next century in attempt to destroy us and the Harbinger? Of course there has to be some kind of missing connection that binds these temporal incursions together! Could it actually be that the nameless darkness doesn't just exist in another phase variance, but another time as well?"

Heart racing, Nicander felt exited at this revelation, for it was a missing piece of the puzzle, and it was like he saw the past four years in a different light. Science applied where his own medical knowledge hadn't reached. Smiling, he wished he could shake the Bactrican's hand, but the forcefield was there to remind him... that they had come for something else entirely. Even Vael suggested countermeasures to utilise if Lucan would agree to use the farsight, and Lucan's heart sank, knowing that this conversation might just be the last he ever had while fully himself.

He sighed lightly, and nodded. "Good suggestions... If there is a Vulcan mind trick that may aid me, I welcome it, and I will not oppose the use of the ARA or a paralytic either. I just need to be conscious and lucid..." Almost a partial agreement, knowing that for the sake of the crew and the mission, he ought to make the attempt. Slowly, he was steeling himself for it, thoughts errant when Vivian began to speak again. He knew not what she and the Vulcan had been whispering about. She, on her part, spoke of the nameless darkness and it's origin, and Lucan remembered what his infested self had said, before Ayden Tyre had restored his body. [Show/Hide]
The memory of the pain, as he had managed to reclaim control over his ruined body, it was something that haunted him still, but more importantly, Lucan remembered what words had risen from the abyss. It was something known to him, and he had told Ejek about it, however briefly. Commander Martin had figured it out on her own based on what he'd just said, and likely the recording made of him when he managed to reclaim his body. "Yes, you are absolutely right. Judging by the words of my infested self, our enemy springs from a concentration of mass that influences the movement of many galaxies, including our Milky Way. For centuries, astronomers observing the motions of our galaxy - and neighbouring galaxies - noted that they were all moving toward the Hydra-Centaurus superclusters with velocities significantly different from those predicted by the expansion of the universe in accordance with the constants the Federation monitor. One possible explanation for this perturbation in the flow is the existence of the so-called Great Attractor - a region or structure of huge mass equivalent to tens of thousands of galaxies, exerting a gravitational pull on the surrounding space. Latest estimations, as far as I recall, is that the Great Attractor would have a diameter of about 300 million light-years and that its centre would lie about 147 million light-years away from the Sol System."

And this like that, another thing clicked into place. Lucan paced his cell and ran his mismatched hands through his hair. "And why is it that we are experiencing a crisis now, when it is so far away?" He looked back at Vael, and jabbed his finger at the man, just shy of the forcefield. "You! By the wind, you just said it! It has to be a temporal distortion, as well as a transphasic quality to its nature, because the the rift touches it! A breach, leading to that distant mass when it's right here! When everything is about to be consumed! It leads to this cosmic terror that eats everything! We must not just weaponise the light, we must seal the breach, where-ever it may be! If we seal it, the extensions of the darkness - the parasitic threat - will be isolated. Cut off, like Commander Martin says!"

Breathing heavily, eyes wild, they soon settled on Commander Ducote...

...and the reality settled in once more.

As the revelation had been made, there was still something Lucan had to do, for sake of the mission. He took a deep breath, and walked over to the ship's First Officer. He wanted to ask the man to not give the order, but he knew... There was little choice. The scientists of the Theurgy could continue where Lucan had left off, the research he left behind merely square one for them. Knowing that Martin, Kaeris and the rest would carry the torch... Lucan closed his eyes momentarily, before he regarded the Commander. Whatever may happen... he was no longer worried for the future. There was hope, now that the nature of the darkness had become plain.

"In addition to what the others suggested," he said quietly, "I would ask for a blindfold, so that the abyss doesn't stare at you through my eyes."

Like a man facing a firing squad, he would do it for the crew he'd protected and treated.

"Ask me," he said to Ducote through the forcefield, "if you see no other recourse."

Perhaps he could find redemption after all?

OOC: Same posting order, and since the Great Attractor is big and outside the Milky Way, I just handwaved the slight discrepancy in your post, Kinvarus. No worries! Make an edit at your leisure. :)
  • Last Edit: August 20, 2019, 09:39:47 PM by Auctor Lucan

Re: Day 05 [1707 hrs.] Scrying through the Storm Front
Reply #27
[ Cmdr Ranaan Ducote | Security Centre | Deck 07 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] attn: @Auctor Lucan @fiendfall @Kinvarus @steelphoenix @TWilkins

Hathev and Ayden objected. He nodded to them both in turn, and tapped their protests into his PADD. Truthfully, if anyone here were going to object, he'd have thought it would have been them anyway. That didn't mean that he would dismiss their concerns - far from it - but it was good at least to see that he had a decent handle on at least someone in the room. Nicander was still practising his ability of fitting the least amount of information into the greatest number of words, apparently content to monologue to his new audience. The telepathic apology from Tyre was unnecessary, though the doctor would sense that he accepted it as offered.

Martin corralled herself, though she gave no sign that she regretted her words. Ducote didn't expect her to, in truth. The post facto knowledge of how close she had been to what amounted to mortal danger, when the danger in question was also capable at the time of warning her about it, resulted in an entirely-justifiable reaction. He had to credit her conviction in not immediately backing down when faced with a (silent) reprimand, though, even if he felt that the reaction in question could better have been deployed elsewhen. Perhaps it would be easier to find common ground with the Theurgy officer cadre than he'd initially feared.

But then Vael produced the magic combination of words that finally animated Nicander and broke him out of his monologue. He touched on trans-temporal mechanics, and the XO felt his temples warn of an impending headache. As if mundane temporal mechanics weren't enough, now science was producing new and exciting forms of the stuff to further twist mortal minds. Then he reminded them of what he'd said before Tyre could repair his body - 'We are the great attractor.' Was that literal? Santa Maria, there are enemies and there are enemies. The Great Attractor is a force of nature, for crying out loud.

Ducote considered.

Nicander - when under the influence of his ethereal passenger - was capable of great destruction. The hybrid had no idea whether or not he was capable of escape, or how he had (if he had) already, and he could hardly risk the man running amok across the ship again. If the parasite took control of him again, they could definitely never trust a single thing he said. Not that I trust him a great deal now, of course. But he had just confirmed-in-principle the latest theory that could help them tackle the threat. Driving the doctor insane now would mean no future information whatsoever. They would win the current battle, find out whether there were any hosts nearby, and potentially risk the outcome of the wider war.

"I would ask for a blindfold, so that the abyss doesn't stare at you through my eyes."

Ducote's obsidian gaze affixed Nicander's eye, his face impassive a couple of feet outside the humming forcefield. He wasn't sure if melodrama or practicality influenced the captive's words.

"Ask me," he said to Ducote through the forcefield, "if you see no other recourse."

Hathev objected through her immutable logic. Ayden through his strict ethics. Ducote appreciated both positions on their own merits... His mind had been changed, however, in only the last few seconds. The weight of variables had shifted just enough; Nicander could have his win today.

"No," Ducote replied, his voice rumbling through his damaged vocal chords before it warmed back up to as close as he got to normal. "No, though if you volunteer, that's on you. You probably represent a more useful resource to our science teams with your faculties intact - provided you remain of assistance. Your continued incarceration is a given regardless, of course."

He made a note to discuss with the captain some methods of compartmentalising information (as far as practical, and preferably without feeding the ship's already-formidable rumour mill) in order to limit whatever some other host aboard might discover. Logically, the hosts could not pinpoint one another in space, or Nicander's mere presence would have drawn Task Force Archeron to the ship like a moth to a flame long ago. If they weren't going to uncover any others today, assuming one was present and taking appropriate countermeasures would have to do.

Looking back up, he looked at Nicander. "I hope you've gotten used to stockade rations."
Nator 159: "I accept no responsibility for the ensign's manifest stupidity. Sir." [Show/Hide]
Ranaan Ducote: "A ship is a home; its crew a family." [Show/Hide]
Evoras: "Your odds of prevailing against us are... slim." [Show/Hide]
Valkra: "Come! We will shake the gates of Sto'Vo'Kor!" [Show/Hide]

Re: Day 05 [1707 hrs.] Scrying through the Storm Front
Reply #28
[ Lieutenant Ayden Tyre | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] @fiendfall @steelphoenix @Kinvarus @Auctor Lucan @Top Hat

Ayden found himself a little overwhelmed by the state of affairs that he was witness to. Hearing Nicander requesting a blindfold so that the 'abyss' couldn't stare at them through his eyes was not an overly comforting sentiment...

However, despite what little progress might have been achieved by Vael exciting their prisoner with his technological expertise enough to lubricate his tongue a fraction. However that was offset by Ducote's sudden desire to begin a stand off. Doctor Nicander had relinquished, admitting that if he was asked, he would use his abilities. Ducote had then countered any progress by suggesting that the plan would not proceed, unless it was Nicander's choice.

Apparently Hathev and himself had delivered enough of a morality strike that Ducote wished to relinquish himself of the responsibility of being the reason as to why the former Doctor had to do an act in which he could endanger himself. Whilst Ayden was pleased on the grounds of adhering to ethical standards, the Commander's following comment about stockade rations was perhaps a trifle uncalled for.

But regardless of the prevailing of Ethics, they had once again failed to gain any foothold in the name of progress...

Ayden mused over the thought of having something to add to the conversation, but regrettably his mind emerged somewhat blank. Whilst he was glad that he had been a part of the interrogation, he was aware that he was both the lowest ranking, and perhaps the least experienced of the interrogatory team. His mind raced in the lapse following Ducote's commentary, hoping to fill the void with a new question to pose to the former Doctor and remove the somewhat uncomfortable taste that Ducote had left lingering in the air.

"Perhaps, if we are to be looking towards other avenues of research, could you fathom any medical characteristics of the Parasite or yourself as a host that I could perhaps direct our medical resources towards?" It was a long shot, imagining that any such opportunity may have been contemplated by Nicander before his imprisonment, but it was worth posing the question in Ayden's eyes.

"Since your imprisonment, the medical staff has been supplemented by several capable officers, as well as new resources that do provide a significant boon upon our department."
Ayden was of course referring to V'Nine, whom had been working incredible feats of medical technology in her swift reversal of those individuals horrifically 'corrected' by the Savi. He had certainly been pleased by her conduct thus far, and had developed no reservations regarding his choice to have her remain in a consultancy posting. 

"And being..." He caught his tongue just in time, almost mentioning that they were on Aldea in dry-dock, which Ayden was conscious that their prisoner did not yet know.. "In a far less... Turbulent... State of affairs, at least when compared to the excitement of our previous week." He had recovered neatly, and whilst to someone who knew him as well as Commander Ducote, such an obvious breach in his usual eloquence was sure to be perceived as ridiculous, but to the rest, he imagined it would be scarcely noticeable. And of course, regardless of any humiliation on his part, at least he wasn't providing any key information to their prisoner.

"It may give us the time and resources to follow up on any theories you may have had regarding your affliction." Ayden finished, hoping that his somewhat bumbling statement didn't attract himself too much ire. "After all, our capabilities are now, somewhat enhanced, in comparison to how they have been previously."

Ayden thought to add that he intended no offence by the previous statement, but in the end, he decided to refrain from the sentiment. He didn't indend offence, but if Nicander chose to percieve it as such, it was no proverbial skin off of the Betazoid's back.

Nicander hiding his affliction had put his patients, and by extention, the whole crew, in potential danger. Therefore in Ayden's eyes, he had violated his oath as a medical officer, and was no longer fit to so much as operate a gurney.

A man who was prepared to  violate such an oath out of his own self-interest, could surely stomach a little contempt.
  • Last Edit: August 30, 2019, 04:07:56 PM by TWilkins
Ayden Tyre - Chief Medical Officer - USS Theurgy - [Show/Hide]

Otheusz - Grey Scars Pirate - USS Theurgy - [Show/Hide]

Y'Lev - Syndicate Dominus - USS Theurgy - [Show/Hide]

Re: Day 05 [1707 hrs.] Scrying through the Storm Front
Reply #29
[ Lt Cmdr Hathev | Security Centre | Deck 07 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @TWilkins @Top Hat  @Auctor Lucan  @Kinvarus @steelphoenix

Her admonishment had not been well received, but then she had not truly expected it to be so considering humanity's endless love affair with their own egos. That Dr Martin was so short-sighted as to believe she had been justified in her derailing of the interrogation not once but twice with her own personal issues, expressed in an emotional and unprofessional manner, was unfortunate; Hathev had expected better of the woman. Of course, she was correct in her judgement that she had also posed scientifically-focused questions; however if she wished to impress Hathev for simply performing her duty in the barest sense, she would be disappointed. The excuse of business was also something of a cliché, and while Hathev had no doubt the woman certainly did have many calls upon her time in her remit as Chief Science Officer, that she could not see the potential detriment to those duties caused by her own mental and emotional state constituted a failure of judgement. Hathev did not wish to mandate treatment unless in the most necessary of circumstances, as it often proved more of a hindrance than a help in putting the patient on the defensive and ensuring they attended a session with entirely the wrong perspective, yet she would do so if she deemed it called for. She would have to form an evaluation after this matter had concluded; for now, there were more pressing demands to attend to.

Mr Nicander was currently engaged in a scientific discussion that meant little to Hathev beyond the surface-level, but seemed to be both of importance and, finally, something approximating progress in their little impasse. There was an almost primordial wildness to Nicander as he spoke, becoming agitated as he apparently made some kind of discovery or breakthrough. Hathev carefully catalogued the man's behaviour, analysing for any signs of potential risk -- for it could be only a short step from intellectual agitation to reflexive aggression in unstable individuals, and with practicalities of the man's previous escape still unestablished there remained the distinct possibility he could perform it once more. She would not jump to conclusions, of course, but merely remaining aware of the potential risks was simple logic.

It dissipated as quickly as it had arisen, Nicander taking a breath and apparently recentring himself before placing himself at Commander Ducote's mercy and agreeing to succumb to the procedure should the Executive Officer wish it performed. Hathev simply stood still and stony, watching the tableau before her: Nicander, utilising all his dramatic flair to appear as a sacrificial lamb; Ducote, unreadable in this moment, holding his arbiter's gaze. She had been unable to entirely form a judgement of either's character, although to compare the two would be misguided. Nicander was neither trustworthy nor cooperative; he had attempted to guide and control this meeting from the very first, and had given in to vulgar emotion -- frustration, anger -- when met with any resistance to those attempts. His apparent lack of dishonesty when he had supplied answers, unsatisfactory though many may have been, and his seemingly genuine engagement with the scientific discussion surrounding the parasites were points in his favour, of course; in future, Hathev would recommend sending an individual to speak to him who could play upon his great ego, allowing him to take the conversation where he willed, and see where such an avenue led. Perhaps he would be more forthcoming when met with the appearance of submission.

Commander Ducote, on the other hand, was a superior officer of whom she had heard only praise. His personnel file told of a dedicated and disciplined man who engendered loyalty in his subordinates and respect in his peers. She had been acquainted with the story of his arrival on the Theurgy, yet had insufficient information on the events to be able to judge his actions as those of an unstable, emotionally and physically drained individual fleeing trauma and loss, or those of a logical tactician determined to defy the enemy by whatever means necessary. Neither option filled her with confidence, yet she could certainly understand one and appreciate the other. She owed him the respect of his position, of course, and that she would afford him; anything more would likely rest upon the outcome of the unpleasant decision he now weighed. She was not familiar enough with his psyche to form a proper probability of the outcome, but whatever he chose she would not be surprised.

Ducote gave voice to his thoughts, and Hathev found she had spoken too soon: this, of all things, she had not expected. The man would not be ordering Nicander to undergo the procedure but neither would he bar Nicander's path should he wish to undergo it by his own volition. A milquetoast judgement from one too weak to stand by one choice or another, or the circumspect offer of a compromise from one familiar enough with his own morality to find the loopholes left within? It seemed her judgement was still incomplete, more data yet required. Curious.

No matter the reasoning, the decision was the correct one, at least in part. Hathev was glad the man would not be ordering their prisoner to risk his sanity, with the iron belief in the greater good that had, perhaps, almost led to his suicide. Of course, it would be impossible for Nicander to freely volunteer considering his situation -- any decision he made would have the undertones of coersion to it as long as his treatment relied on the generosity of others -- yet she could not fault Ducote for wishing to leave the avenue open. The unfortunate truth remained that, statistically, there was likely to be another infected being aboard this vessel; certainly, should a parasite have wished to join the Theurgy they would have had ample opportunity, the ship enfolding new crews into its ranks with almost alarming frequency. While there was no other means of discovering such individuals, Nicander's farsight was a tempting recourse.

Lieutenant Tyre at least wished to investigate other methods of testing for the infected; Hathev, in turn, wondered if there would be any method of suring up Nicander's mind that he might engage in farsight without risking his faculties.

She asked as much: 'I would be interested in investigating farsight,' she said, 'perhaps there may be a way to protect yourself from the abyss, as you call it. Additionally, I would like to discuss your mental state with you, that we might determine if there are any psychological indicators of infection. At a later time, perhaps.' The scientific discussion of earlier had proved to be the most effective and useful approach thus far, and she hardly wished to muddy the waters with her own desires. There was little urgency to them; they could be attended to at another time.
CPO Morgan Song - Engineering - Chief of Maintenance (V2) [Show/Hide]
Lt Cmdr Hathev - Counselling - Chief Counsellor [Show/Hide]
Ensign Inej 'Avi' Avirim - Security - Investigations Officer [Show/Hide]
Xelia - Civillian - Software Engineer [Show/Hide]

Re: Day 05 [1707 hrs.] Scrying through the Storm Front
Reply #30
[ Lt. Cmdr Vael Kaeris | Security Centre | Deck 07 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] attn: @Auctor Lucan @fiendfall  @Kinvarus  @Top Hat  @TWilkins

A reaction, and one he had anticipated.  Vael nodded as Nicander responded to his inquiry, jotting down each response and a series of side inquiries that he would pursue as part of his own investigation.  His theory had been sufficiently innovative to draw out what Vael could only hazard to be the raw Nicander, no longer hidden behind shields and ablative plating awaiting dissection.  This was the one to whom he'd wished they'd been speaking all along.  "I will work to isolate Ms. McMillan's bio records to see if we can get a detailed scan of her full spectrographic wavelength prior to her experience with the Savi," he stated calmly to Lt. Cmdr Martin, in part to gain her buy in but also to prove that Nicander's contributions were being taken into consideration.  "It wouldn't hurt to try and identify any other Radiant life forms and see if we can build a comparative scan."  His gaze turned towards Ayden with a slight nod.  "Doctor Tyre," he began, his mannerisms precluding him from addressing anyone, even a friend, informally while on duty, "your assistance would prove invaluable in those regards."

He tapped out some more notations on his PADD before adding, "If we could build a secure..." he considered his next word quite carefully before continuing, "decontamination room.  It would be an excellent place to attempt implementation of any discoveries."  He tilted his head slightly towards their subject, "That is, if the doctor doesn't object to a periodic change in venue."  In that regard, his statement was a conceit.  He doubted that Nicander would be given much choice in the matter, but securing his agreement might increase his eagerness to participate and, Vael felt, their chance at any successful outcome.

There were, of course, logistical concerns.  Establishing a secure area, ensuring that only those necessary had knowledge of and access to said area, ensuring that transportation between the brig and this new lab was assured without risk of loss or diversion.  He made a shorthand notation regarding security to himself lest he lose two trains of thought to that particular complication.

As the conversation then turned from the microscopic to the telescopic, Vael's lips tightened slightly.  The Great Attractor?  Bad enough that these so-called parasites might be transphasic and transtemporal, but the functional core of a supercluster?  At the very least, it was one more observational vector they could review, but it was certainly nothing he would recommend approaching. And more importantly, any efforts they made to look into the cluster would need safeguards in place, else they risk anything within looking back.  The farsight was one thing, but anything that concrete was far to risky even under the standards of today's physics.  Active scans could be met with active scans.

The thought that they might then somehow... quarantine the Zone of Avoidance?  That was beyond anything Vael could rationalize now.  It was a completely different line of thought from purifying or even isolating the doctor.  True, if they could somehow seal that region, assuming it to be the source of the collective will driving these events, would this silence their influence like a Borg disconnected from the Collective... or would this simply drive the disconnected to greater acts of desperation.  These were all conditions that would need to be explored, and absent empirical data on the matter, wholly hypothetical with potentially the very fates of the Alpha and Beta Quadrants in the balance.

"I will have some proposals on your desk within the hour," he stated to the CSO, his side-list of necessary requisitions increasing exponentially with this new introduction.

The conversation then made its rounds once more, seemingly intent on negating itself in the process.  True, they had come into this interrogation as a hydra, each head focused on its own line of inquiry.  Likely the result of rushed pairings and a lack of prior consensus.  But not it seemed that the hydra was intent on removing its own teeth, forgetting part of why it was here in the process -- they needed to know if there were other hosts aboard.  And now it was left to the prisoner, who, by his own admission, feared the risks of employing his abilities to make the determination. 

Vael took a breath, his more professional tone set aside for something perhaps a bit more personable -- something that perhaps Nicander would recognize as bedside manner, although whether he would find it a sign of respect or condescension Vael could not say, but he gambled it his best risk to make the appeal.  "Doctor," he began, lowering his PADD and placing it on his lap for the first time since their arrival, "While the Commander will not order you to undergo this farsight procedure, no doubt out of concern for your safety -- something I am certain we all share in common -- I do ask that you consider the risks and implications should there be a host nearby who might find some way to sabotage our efforts or contaminate our findings... or worse yet, strike at you directly.  I assure you, we will take every precaution we can to safeguard your will from undue influence.  If this is something you would rather think about, if there are other precautions you would like to take that we have not already considered, I understand.  But we have no other method of detecting such threats, as you well know."  To tell him this would likely go a long way towards restoring the trust that he had lost would likely add insult to injury.  To point out that he was still a doctor and as yet a member of Starfleet would be a reprimand to his own team.  Instead, he could only hope that the statement was sufficient to reach the healer and the officer that stood behind forcefield.

Re: Day 05 [1707 hrs.] Scrying through the Storm Front
Reply #31
Lt. Cmdr Vivian Martin |  Security Centre | Deck 07 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy  ]   Attn: @TWilkins @fiendfall @Top Hat @Auctor Lucan @steelphoenix

Having clearly dropped her personal issues with Nicander, Vivian was glad that Ducote seemed to have let the issue go as well, although perhaps that was more because she'd actually managed to give them another potential avenue to explore, although she knew deep down that she would have to take a moment to apologise for her unprofessional conduct, despite the circumstance.

The same could be said for Hathev, although Vivian knew she had gotten her point across, the look...if you could ever say that Vulcan's gave a look...the counsellor had given her made Vivian think that the woman wasn't going to simply let her go without some kind of checkup or something at some point. Hell deep down Vivian knew she needed to see one of them at some point, but she was far too busy at the moment. For now she'd finish up here and head to her office, or one of the labs and bury herself in work, that would hopefully bide her more time and let her ignore all the crap she'd been burying for...a long time.

On the flip side however, she couldn't help but smile slightly, one corner of her mouth curling into a half smile as she listened to Nicander answer her question and confirm her hypothesis. She had of course read some of the observations astronomers had made about the movement of their own galaxy and neighbouring ones towards the Hydra-Centaurus superclusters, it had been interesting but not something that she hadn't given too much thought into until read what Nicander had said in Ejek's reports.

 It gave them another avenue to explore and something that, if they could pull off would buy them some much needed time. How exactly to go about doing so was another question entirely, luckily she had a great team of scientists and an AI to help out there, it might take a lot of late nights and hard work but she was sure they would come up with something.

She listened to the others as they asked their questions, paying attention to Vael and gave him a nod when he told her that he would have some proposals on her desk within the hour before turning back to the doctor to talk to him.

When it was her turn, she remained on her subject, especially since Nicander agreed with her that they should find a way to seal the breach and cut the parasites off from accessing their galaxy. "This...abyss where the parasites reside do they live in the whole space within or are they confined to a
single area within? We'll probably be able to setup something to contain a small to medium sized area and seal it off from our galaxy, but like you said it's a very large region of space, covering all of it would take significant resources that we don't have...if it was even possible to to seal off that much space begin with."
the CSO asked.

Still Vivian had hope, they couldn't simply attack the parasites on one front with the Light but on two, attacking them where they live as well and hopefully cut them off from the rest of that galaxy. Both would not be easy but at least they had two ideas to work on which was more than they had had a little while ago.

Re: Day 05 [1707 hrs.] Scrying through the Storm Front
Reply #32
[ Doctor Lucan cin Nicander | Security Center | Deck 07 | USS Theurgy ]
Attn: @TWilkins @Top Hat @fiendfall @Kinvarus @steelphoenix
The answer that came out of Commander Ducote's mouth was... entirely unexpected. A frown of consternation touched Lucan's features as he stood there, hearing how the new First Officer didn't jump at the chance of exploiting Nicander in the best interests of the ship and the mission. It left Lucan perplexed while the others began to speak, but he did recognise the wordplay of calling his replicated food stockade rations - suggesting that the barrier between them would remain indefinitely. This, however, did not generate any concern, since he accepted his incarceration. No, what had made him begin to question himself was the Commander being swayed by ethical grounds. By the very boundaries of morale that Lucan thought the man exempt given the manner in which he'd attacked his credibility.

Could it be that even the First Officer upheld protocol despite the threat of the Infested? Were truly the Endeavour officers less eager to cut him up? For many seconds, Lucan watched the Commander while the others spoke, until Doctor Tyre mentioned how the medical department might follow up on other theories of his regarding his affliction. It pulled him out of his reflections upon the present threat to his life, and made him look at the Betazoid. By the winds, can they truly be entrusted with the second way, or will I regret it in agony and death? Commander Hathev asked him about psychological afflictions signature to the infestation, and it prompted a belated reply. "No, but there might be a physiological venue to explore, at my peril, which has nothing to do with my sanity or my farsight."

Vael, however, was talking to Vivian Martin about theories of his, and before Lucan said more - still concerned what the second way might hold for him - he spoke up after the Batrican was finished. The risk to the new research had been brought up, along with a decontamination chamber, and while the latter was not a necessity, the former was a point Lucan had considered. And in the respect of what he was about to tell them... Storms take him, was he even about to risk divulging the knowledge? Could he truly trust them?

"Besides the precautions you have already suggested, with the addition of a blindfold, there are no other precautions for the farsight as far as I know," he said in his deep voice, "but there is a directly lethal manner in which the threat can be detected, at my great peril. Perhaps even yours, depending on how the thing inside me will manifest."

Vivan had already asked about the enemy, so before he elaborated, he answered her, sighing lightly and rubbing his pale grey eyes with his non-artificial hand. "I don't know what might be beyond the breach. I have only seen the dark. How large it might be is unknown to me. Sealing me, personally, from the breach might have consequences for me, but that does nothing about the rest of them out there. Instead..."

Lucan clenched his jaw in resignation, looking towards Ducote. A leap of faith, sufficed to say. "High-intensity anyon emissions are considered harmless to organic life... but not for me. Such subatomic particles can be used to dephase the parasite. It was used aboard this ship when the Ishtar entity visited us, before either of you came aboard. Luckily, I was displaced in time and place by the entity, finding myself off the ship by the time Captain Ives ordered it to be used. Had I been exposed to it..."

Perhaps they could already understand what the consequences would have been, but he turned his stare towards them as he illustrated the obvious. Perhaps they could reckon why he hadn't divulged it immediately. Perhaps not. He simply had to gamble with his life as he told them, and hope that the knowledge wouldn't mean the death of him and all innocent hosts out there... that had suffered like he had.

"Anyon radiation can be modulated for different phase variables, so it might require sweeping over the scale one number at the time, but once the correctly calibrated emissions hit me and what's inside... the parasite... the manifestation of the nameless darkness, it will be brought into our reality fully. It will kill me - sharing the same space as me as it is - but it might even destroy the parasite as well. I do not know what will happen for certain, beyond the fact that whatever resides inside... will become a part of our physical existence, and could rend me apart from within. Moreover, how the thing might manifest itself here is an unknown."

Hopefully, him telling them this would make them understand that he was on their side, and put his life in their hands.

"Compared to that... I would prefer to use the farsight, when there is a slim chance that you can harness the bio-luminescence of the Radiants and restore me later on. So, I do volunteer," he said, and looked towards the others, "but if you can do something to safeguard my sanity in the process... I welcome it."

OOC: @Top Hat goes first, then the same posting order as before this post follows. Hope you can work with this y'all! :)
  • Last Edit: September 10, 2019, 09:12:44 PM by Auctor Lucan

Re: Day 05 [1707 hrs.] Scrying through the Storm Front
Reply #33
[ Cmdr Ranaan Ducote | Security Centre | Deck 07 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] attn: @Auctor Lucan @fiendfall @Kinvarus @steelphoenix @TWilkins

ooc: game plan slightly altered after discussion with AL. Dialogue from Blue Tiran supplied by @BZ

"And being... in a far less... turbulent... state of affairs..."

Ducote's poker face took a supreme test in that moment. One of the chief reasons - aside from the danger to the man himself - he was reluctant to have Nicander use his farsight was that he had no idea what its range was. Could he confine it just to the ship? If they learned that there were no other parasites aboard the Theurgy, but lit a beacon over their location, they were worse than stuck at square one. Keeping Nicander in the dark was something of a necessity until they worked out just what was safe to tell him. If anything.

~Smooth, Ayden,~ he sent with some tempered amusement.

The scientists in the room, faced with Ducote's stay of the demand to use the dubious boons of infestation, immediately began wondering about further venues of study that had been opened up with the revelations in the aftermath. Vael made the point that Nicander electing not to volunteer his abilities ran the risk of future sabotage by an hypothetical other host, but given the fact that the erstwhile doctor's actions so far had been entirely motivated by self-preservation... Ducote wagered that the response would be less than altruistic.

Nicander turned his attention to the XO, seemingly weighing those very options. Anyons would expose any parasite, dragging it into this alternity. There would be no question of whether or not to believe a (reformed?) host about whether or not they were telling the truth. There would be no chance of avoiding detection. Assuming that this was a true statement, of course. Permanent disbelief would get them nowhere, though.

Still... an objective test to perform. It appealed to both the Security and the Science officer in him. He paced slowly before the forcefield, lips pursed as he thought.

"Compared to that... I would prefer to use the farsight, when there is a slim chance that you can harness the bio-luminescence of the Radiants and restore me later on. So, I do volunteer, but if you can do something to safeguard my sanity in the process... I welcome it."

"My suggestion that you would volunteer was mostly rhetorical, Mister Nicander," he smiled faintly.

The risk that the other parasites might divine their location was moderate. The risk that Nicander would lose his mind to them once again was... moderate-severe. The risk that if so, he would escape and wreak havoc, severe-conditional. A reasonably-pliant and lucid Nicander in his current state, apparently willing to assist in their investigations... too great an asset to lose.

"Chief Neyah," he rumbled, and one of the armoured security crew against the opposite bulkhead turned its opaque-helmeted head fractionally towards him. "I need another... six exo-suited officers." And a few normal ones, probably.

A pause, and a nod. Externally, there was no sound as the Bolian spoke into her helmet comm, but Ducote could feel her assent through his empathy. It would take a while for them to get suited up, anyway.

"If the previous anyon sweep would have killed you, we can simply pull the settings from the ship's logs and repeat the phenomenon. We will move you off the ship - temporarily, under heaviest guard - for the duration. We can hardly keep you insecure for as long as it'll take to get everyone back aboard..." he mused aloud, still pacing. "The transporter pads can be modified to catch any returning crew and/or visitors after the main test."

Speaking of... He tapped his badge to ping Blue. "Tiran, Ducote. I need you to add anyon collimators to the transporter pads, but keep it under your hat."

The pause was short, and the reply was typical in its sarcasm. Her tone was fairly light, though. [Thanks, because I wasn't fuckin' busy enough. I won't even ask...] she sighed. [I'll get it done.] The link closed. If Ducote cared about Blue's lack of decorum, he gave no inward nor outward sign.

Belatedly, given that he'd been caught up in being able to action something to secure the ship, he considered that if anyone aboard was infested, this test would kill them in spectacular and probably-painful fashion. His pacing paused, and Ayden particularly would feel the sour note that crept into his mood.

Chances of another host aboard were slim, though, to his mind. Slimmer than the danger to Nicander, certainly. The only other had left the ship a long time ago, relatively speaking. The sweep shouldn't harm a soul. And he prayed to God that he was right.

If it worked, they'd even have something to give Martok to help root out the hosts in the Empire.
Nator 159: "I accept no responsibility for the ensign's manifest stupidity. Sir." [Show/Hide]
Ranaan Ducote: "A ship is a home; its crew a family." [Show/Hide]
Evoras: "Your odds of prevailing against us are... slim." [Show/Hide]
Valkra: "Come! We will shake the gates of Sto'Vo'Kor!" [Show/Hide]

Re: Day 05 [1707 hrs.] Scrying through the Storm Front
Reply #34
[ Lieutenant Ayden Tyre | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] @fiendfall @steelphoenix @Kinvarus @Auctor Lucan @Top Hat

A 'directly lethal manner' to detect any Parasites aboard the ship was certainly not an idea that Ayden found particularly champion, but given the information that had been discussed by the more scientific members of the group, it seemed that the farsight use would be of greater risk to Nicander, who was apparently more of an asset than the potential crewman they could kill with their new plan... The alternative; subatomic particles that could, 'de-phase' a parasite, was certainly not anything that Ayden was confident in the delivery of... In fact, the only reason he hadn't found himself flushed at Commander Ducote's telepathic, good-humoured, ridicule was his mental engagement with the idea from a medical point of view.

His distraction was the realisation that he had the unenviable task of trying to establish the effects of any parasite being brought into their dimension by a phase variant sweep, and how to adress them. How he could accurately establish the results of a phenomenon that had not yet occurred was a difficult concept, especially considering that all he had to go on was Nicander's comment that the man would certainly die in the process, by bringing the parasite into their reality and forced it to occupy the same space as he.

Medically speaking, it was certainly an interesting area. In theoretics. He tried to push the practicality of the 'experiment' out of his mind.

His initial theories considered of the obvious, that any parasite becoming phased into the same reality as any crewman aboard the ship occupied, it would fuse together with whatever organs it was attached to. It almost certainly kill the host, unless perchance the Parasite's miraculous ability to protect it's host from grievous harm maintained whilst they were carried across into a different dimension.

In that case, there would certainly be a great deal of physical deformity...

The extent of which was entirely unknown to them. The parasite could be microbial for all they knew. Alternatively it could be the size of a shuttlecraft and the act could cause enough structural damage to decompress an entire deck... And if a parasite of that size displaced a human body, it mightn't even cause enough harm to kill the beast. In that case, what would the crew do?

Ducote was all for the maneuver, aside from an especially sour note that almost made Ayden flinch when it washed upon his Paracortex. However, Ducote, Vael and Vivien, they wouldn't have been considering the thoughts he had been pondering and noting upon his PADD as the others went about organisation. Hathev on the other hand was someone that he believed would agree with his stance; it was certainly the logical course of action.

"Commander..." Ayden piped up, noting that his comment would once again be throwing up barricades in front of their goal. But it needed to be addressed. "Whilst this option is not without its pros, especially when concerning Mister Nicander." Ayden was addressing his survival as much as the chance the man was getting to get off the ship. "There is certainly a great deal of risk that is accompanying it; postulation on my part, but potential risk nonetheless."

"And, as I'm sure you're already aware of, Mister Nicander has made no such mention of this method until now. It may be worth considering that this is all a ruse to facilitate an escape attempt." Ayden signalled telepathically to both Ducote and Commander Hathev, not including Vael or Vivian for the moment, both due to their engrossment in their own work and that their lack of telepathic ability made it slightly more likely that they'd react to his message.

"However you proceed, this man has proven on numerous occasions to be as deceitful as he is dangerous and has psychokinetic abilities that can best mere phasers. We must show great caution when handling him." It was unlike Ayden to delve into tactical information, but he was aware that whirled up in a new idea or discovery, often less collected individuals could overlook certain areas of concern. Whilst Ayden did not worry that Ducote may not take the matter seriously, he was concerned that the sudden surge of spontaneous cooperation with their prisoner might cloud the Commander's judgement.

"Firstly, we do not know how any Parasites would react to this dimension." Ayden decided that his telepathic pause had lingered for long enough and that he needed to resume verbal speech lest he arouse the suspicion of Nicander. "Perhaps their displacement will kill both the host and the parasite. On the other hand, it is entirely possible that the parasite's self-sustaining mechanism will come into effect even in our dimension, and that we will be faced with the threat of a partially mutated parasite-hybrid aboard the ship."

"There is also the possibility that the parasite is small enough that even brought into our dimension it could be undetectable. We could be dealing with microbial life forms, which would require each member of the crew to go through intense bio-scanning to reveal, even if brought into our dimension. On the other hand, the parasites could be the size of shuttlecraft and bringing one into our dimension could breach the hull."

"And then of course, it could be a PADD sized Cephalopod that will flop onto the deck and die."
His conclusion was perhaps a touch abrupt for the Betazoid's usual tone, but the situation called for such dramatism.

"If we are to proceed with this course of action, we will require a great deal of additional power routed to internal sensors emitting constant bioscans across each of the three vectors as we perform the anyon scans." It wasn't often that Ayden was so instructive in wielding his authority, but such a circumstance did call for it. "That way we can detect any individual experiencing any immediate and severe bodily disruptions, and use force fields to contain any potential threats before we have muttations running amok."

"We can have the computer run immediate diagnostics of the results of the scan and I can corroborate any abnormalities. With a touch of luck, even in the worst case scenario, we may yet be prepared. Even just a few seconds notice granted by bio-scans could prove invaluable." Ayden paused, wondering if it was too cliché to deliver a quote to reinforce his point. He decided for it. "As it is said, forewarned is forearmed. A red alert might also be prudent so that the crew are ready in case anything goes awry." Ayden finalised his speech and suddenly felt a trifle sheepish from his sudden bout of assertiveness. He felt the need to address it.

"Assuming we can set this up as specified, hopefully I shouldn't need to delve any deeper into the role of an impromptu tactical offer. By the Four Deities, I must admit that I don't much enjoy it."
And for Ayden to resort to religious representation in his accentuation demonstrated two things to a keen enough observer.

Firstly, that the Betazoid was speaking with much less contemplation than he usually elected to use in his dialogues, especially with senior officers, which was perhaps a symptom of the second reason...

That Ayden was nausiatingly mortified about the potential consequence of the phenomenon that they were preparing to emulate.
Ayden Tyre - Chief Medical Officer - USS Theurgy - [Show/Hide]

Otheusz - Grey Scars Pirate - USS Theurgy - [Show/Hide]

Y'Lev - Syndicate Dominus - USS Theurgy - [Show/Hide]

Re: Day 05 [1707 hrs.] Scrying through the Storm Front
Reply #35
[ Lt Cmdr Hathev | Security Centre | Deck 07 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @TWilkins @Top Hat  @Auctor Lucan  @Kinvarus @steelphoenix 

On reflection, Hathev was more surprised than she perhaps should have been at Nicander's response to Mr Ducote. After all the man's histrionics, his empassioned and dramatic speeches about the dangers of using farsight, it seemed that the very moment Ducote decided not to compel Nicander to undergo such a procedure the erstwhile Chief Medical Officer became all-too-eager to volunteer himself. To a lesser observer it might have appeared suspicious -- perhaps the man had intended to use farsight all along, attempting reverse psychology that they might not recognise the origins of the plan; perhaps this was a bid for freedom from the creature coiled within Nicander.

Indeed, even had this not been his intent, Nicander had always exhibited a desire for control, attempting to direct the interrogation from the first, and so it would have been in line with this aspect of his personality to only acquiesce to a procedure when the permission came directly from himself and was not imposed upon him by another.

Hathev, however, knew better. She had seen the barest bones of Nicander's thought process as Ducote announced he would not be forcing farsight upon him, and it seemed that Commander Ducote had refuted Nicander's expectations in a way that had deeply shaken his understanding of his position, and of his captors. Nicander had made no secret of the fact that he was frustrated with his current interrogators: he had frequently spoken of his previous connection with Lieutenant Ejek in such a way that one might think it had been a seminal breakthrough rather than the brief conversation it had been reported as. Whether Nicander resented Hathev for taking the woman's position, or Tyre for taking his own, she could not say; certainly he had been affected when she referred to him as a former Starfleet officer, a reaction which had spoken volumes he refused to say. Nevertheless it did not take her degree in psychology to comprehend that Nicander disliked his interrogators on some level. Certainly, he had clearly been ready to accept the worst of Ducote at the very least.

That his expectations had been proven incorrect had surprised him into compliance. A curious development but understandable in the circumstances; Hathev would be sure to make note of it in her report that future interrogators may make use of the knowledge.

It seemed in his eagerness, Nicander described a method that appealed to Ducote far more; whether the same could be said of Hathev she could not be certain. With so few data points it was difficult to properly judge the option and weigh its logical merits. For how could she accurately postulate the number of infested possibly aboard the Theurgy at this very moment? Such an individual would have had ample opportunity to join the crew as one of the many refugees brought aboard, after all, and without knowledge of the approximate number of hosts in Starfleet she could not begin to estimate the likelihood that more than one of the creatures would be sent to this vessel. Was this a faceless army they faced or a small number of well-placed operatives?  If the latter, why had Nicander been chosen at all?

She disliked the lack of certainty here. Ducote could be harmlessly scanning the crew, or he could be risking the lives of an unknown number of individuals. Infested individuals, certainly, but life forms nevertheless. By the same token, allowing Nicander to engage in farsight might result in anything from him escaping unscathed to him losing himself to the parasite, or even to alerting other parasites, and therefore the task force, to the Theurgy's whereabouts.

In the mathematics of philosophy, many lives outweighed a single life, of course; but in both scenarios these many lives were hypothetical -- unknown infested, or potential Theurgy and Task Force crew members -- while the life and sanity of Mr Nicander was a certain risk. Without the ability to properly predict the outcomes either way, the option that preserved that single certain life, distasteful as it might be, was mathematically and logically superior. Commander Ducote had not asked for her approval, yet she would have given it.

Dr Tyre's warnings were relevant and accurate, but Nicander, with all his new-found sense of helpfulness, quickly refuted them, at least in part.

He spoke up: 'As I clarified in my report to Counselor Ejek, when I was introduced to the thing that infested me in that cave, the size of the thing...' He did not attempt to estimate verbally, opting instead for a visual representation. He raised his hands, holding them apart to convey the size, the mismatched appendages hovering approximately a short distance apart, the exact size waxing and waning. Hathev calculated the median as approximately 30 inches, equivalent to 76.2cm, 2.5 feet, 0.83 recurring yards, or 762000 micrometres. Certainly not shuttle-sized.

Hathev saw little reason to disbelieve this. Indeed, from the behaviour of Commander Ducote and Dr Tyre, it seemed the matter had been settled, the course set. Ducote's requesting of further Security staff heralded the end of the interrogation, such as it had been; this was a Security and Medical matter now. Her expertise, already obselescent in the situation, was no longer relevant nor required. Her curiosity in this matter would not take precedence over her duty; it would be a waste of resources for her to remain for the procedure.

'Commander, with your permission, I leave this in hands more suited than my own,' she said smoothly. 'I shall be in my office should any have need of me. You may all consider my door open should you have need to discuss the events of today or any day previous.' She cast her gaze over her compatriots, careful not to linger upon any particular individual; eventually her eyes found Mr Nicander. 'My door is more figurative in your case, of course,' she said to him, 'but nevertheless I would be glad to speak to you once this is procedure is over. We can discuss the possibility at a later time, of course.'

She would certainly relish the opportunity to further study the scientific and psychological phenomenon that currently resided in this ship's brig. For now, however, she left her fellow officers to their duty; hers lay elsewhere.
CPO Morgan Song - Engineering - Chief of Maintenance (V2) [Show/Hide]
Lt Cmdr Hathev - Counselling - Chief Counsellor [Show/Hide]
Ensign Inej 'Avi' Avirim - Security - Investigations Officer [Show/Hide]
Xelia - Civillian - Software Engineer [Show/Hide]

Re: Day 05 [1707 hrs.] Scrying through the Storm Front
Reply #36
[ Lt. Cmdr Vael Kaeris | Security Centre | Deck 07 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] attn: @Auctor Lucan @fiendfall  @Kinvarus  @Top Hat  @TWilkins

Vael was at a rather distasteful lack of words.  He supposed it was the commander's Betazoid lineage that inclined him towards moments of passivity so readily on the heels of what seemed to be administrative resolve.  It had lead to hours of reflective self-speculation as to how the commander had persevered through the ranks or as to which truly dominated the pairing between himself and Chief Engineer Tiran.

To say he was disappointed in the decision to pull their subject back from the proverbial brink would be inadequate and a touch inelegant.  It was not unexpected, and Vael was partially pleased that they would not be sacrificing a potential source of information.  And yet, he had made the proper arguments, appealed to that part of the doctor that seemed most willing to try what they had asked.  Were he anyone else, in the face of such a drastic change in direction, he would punctuate the moment with a deep sigh.

But Vael was hardly one to make such outwards expressions, especially in the course of duty.  It was a pointless and personal indulgence that availed no one and nothing save his own vanity.  And his vanity was not on the line.

He would support the decision for, as contrary as it was to his curiosity, there was merit in it, and it did not preclude later opportunities under, perhaps, more ideal circumstances.  The doctor had provided sufficient tidbits to spark an assortment of investigative vectors, and that would now fall to the larger Science and Medical teams.

Pausing in his notations, the final element marked 'anyon phase variance', he regarded the CSO beside him.  The counselor, it seemed, had seen fit to excuse herself.  As he was no longer the head of the science division on board, it would be unseemly for him to speak out of turn.  It fell to Lt. Commander Martin to speak on behalf of her team, but this should come as no surprise to either the commander nor the doctor, for his mannerisms were very much by-the-book when so required. 

"Ideally, we may be able to come up with some... less distressing methods to detect hosts," he stated at last. "But it will take time to properly calibrate as we only have one affirmed subject and no desire to see him explosively decompress."
  • Last Edit: September 25, 2019, 08:26:22 PM by steelphoenix

Re: Day 05 [1707 hrs.] Scrying through the Storm Front
Reply #37
Lt. Cmdr Vivian Martin |  Security Centre | Deck 07 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy  ]  Attn: @TWilkins @fiendfall @Top Hat @Auctor Lucan @steelphoenix

Vivian's mind was already running through various possibilities and ideas that they could try, although how they were going to scan such a vast area of space would be an issue. The fact that Nicander didn't know much about the location of the Parasite's within the area of space was somewhat disappointing, if he had it would have made things far more simpler. Instead they would have to launch probes or run scans to find them, which had so many potential problems that she didn't really want to think about them at the moment.

Deciding to focus on the conversations going on around her, she was somewhat relieved that they weren't going to risk the former CMO's life, not necessarily because the well being of the man, that would take a little more time to get over everything that had happened between them but more for the information he possessed, he was the only one who knew anything really about the parasites and to lose that would make her and her department's job that much harder.

When Nicander mentioned Anyon radiation she knew immediately what he was talking about and what the end result would be for him and he wasn't wrong. Anyon radiation would indeed be safe for the crew but for someone with a creature that resided outside of their realm to an extent, doing so would more than likely cause a messy end result and most definitely the death of the host. It was indeed an option they could pursue Vivian would definitely file it in the last resort category of ideas in which case farsight would be the safer option, despite the risks in that too. How they would protect Nicander's sanity during the process however, she did not know, someone else in her Department and the Medical Department could figure it out hopefully. Even then they would need to come up with some kind of device that could scan and detect the parasites safely.

The CSO did notice Vael glance at her out of the corner of her eye and while she imagined he might not be too happy with the fact he had been so close to getting Nicander to go along with his idea only to be to have him change his mind, she could understand any frustration he might have but to his credit he didn't show too much of it nor did he speak out about it, clearly leaving it up to her as the CSO to speak.

""Vael is correct. While it is entirely possible that we will come up with a less harmful way of detecting hosts, it will take time to figure such a method out and calibrate it. Especially with only one known subject at the moment." she began, glancing towards Nicander. "At the moment Nicander is far to valuable an asset to risk, especially for the immediate future. While an Anyon partical sweep could indeed be used to sweep the ship to detect any hosts. It would not only be a time consuming process since we would indeed have to modulate the phase variation until we found the right one but like the Doctor said, the end result would be lethal to the host." she said, pausing to take a breath.

"For now one could say that we could simply escort the Doctor under armed guard off the ship or two one of the other Vectors while we scan this one, however that's going under the assumption that there are no other infested aboard. If there are any onboard however, we will kill them using an Anyon Particle sweep. If we want to know for certainly right now if there are any other infested on board then we have no choice but to use this farsight like Lt Commander Kaeris suggested, especially since the Doctor is willing to do so." she added, supporting her assistant chief's suggestion.

"However while I support the suggestion, I do not recommend doing so before the Medical and Science Departments have come up with a way to prevent the loss of the hosts sanity before hand." Vivan added. ""While delaying the action might increase the risk of one or more infested going undiscovered within our midst, I believe the knowledge that our former Chief Medical Officer can provide is too great a thing to risk losing him to our enemy, something I'm sure we can all agree on." she finished with a glance over at Vael, compromising between the Commander and her assistant chief.

Re: Day 05 [1707 hrs.] Scrying through the Storm Front
Reply #38
[ Doctor Lucan cin Nicander | Security Center | Deck 07 | USS Theurgy ]
Attn: @TWilkins @Top Hat @fiendfall @Kinvarus @steelphoenix
Behind the forcefield, Nicander was surprised when Ducote said that the offer had been rhetorical. That was certainly not the impression he got at the beginning of the hearing, the use of his cursed ability having been the highest priority. Then again, of course, given how he'd illustrated the risks to himself as well as the present officers, it could be Ductote was earnest in having changed his mind.

It seemed, instead, that the new First Officer rather opted to utilise the dangerous method of sweeping the ship with anyon particles. It had been a gamble on his own part to even mention something lethal to himself, but the present officers - aside from Vivian Martin who'd made a threat on his life out of personal reasons - had showed themselves to be upholding Starfleet values, and it had been calculated risk. An armed escort was being summoned for the Ducote's idea, due to wear exosuits. Nicander folded his tattooed and artificial hands behind his back in thought, a frown creasing his brow because of the danger to the innocent hosts to the parasites that might be caught. Then again, he was fairly sure that there were none other than himself aboard, lest they would already have come for him already. Of course he couldn't be certain any more because of his incarceration. He believed he could see the XO's reasoning, because without any other means to detect the Infested, making sure that there were no other ones than Nicander aboard was their only remaining resort to preserve the integrity of the mission.

"As much as I fear for the innocent hosts," he said in the end, "given the present circumstances, the necessity to keep the people on the ship safe, it's a valid option. If there are other hosts aboard... I think the location the ship would already have been compromised, and a retaliation for what happened in the Azure Nebula would have been made already. All I know indicates that what we accomplished has truly foiled their primary means of inciting a galactic war."

After that, he had provided a clarification to the expected size of the parasite when Doctor Tyre doubted the method, before Counselor Hathev had excused herself for the time being. Lucan's Betazoid successor had insisted on dropping his doctorate again, making Lucan wonder if it was some kind of bias against his species that made him so petty - that the Doctor felt threatened by someone whom he couldn't read the mind of. Perhaps it's the same with Ferengi? he thought with some cursory amusement, but didn't make any comment beyond his earlier clarifying of the size of what hid inside him. I suppose I shouldn't be surprised that a Betazoid has no faith in someone who's mind they can't assault. Among Câroon, what Tyre's species did was akin to rape, and this ARA idea was a testament to how far they might go in their vile practices.

There seemed, also, to be some confusion in regard to the nature and result of using anyon particles, but the scientists and Ops personnel would sort out the proper use later. It was not a scan. The parasite was inside his torso, and wouldn't 'flop on the deck'. The particles would kill both the host and the parasite, since they would occupy the same physical space. Two sets of bio matter fused into each other. It's fortunate that the new Chief Medical Officer deal with patients in sickbay rather than matters beyond his ken.

"Thank you," he said to the two scientists, who both argued that an attempt to use the farsight could still be an option for the future, when means to safeguard his own sanity and the mission could be found. Moreover, there might just be a way to actually use anyon emissions to scan for the enemy later, when more research had been done. Such a thing was far better than just killing the hosts with anyon radiation. "After these subparticle sweeps, I will be available here for whaetver research you need my input on. Also, if you can find a way that would enable a safe use of my farsight, I am at the crew's disposal."

Indeed, there were plenty of fields to research, and this was what Nicander felt was key to the mission as a whole. For the first time since his infestation had been revealed to the crew, he felt like there was actually hope. Contrary to his beliefs, the research would continue, and he was at no risk to be cut open - again - by a hate-blinded, desperate officers who'd abandoned all ethics for sake of results.

"Thank you for coming to see me, and I look forward to hearing what comes of your team's efforts, Commander Martin," he said to Vivian, and nodded to Commander Kaeris before he looked towards Tyre. "Good luck, Mister Tyre. Please give my old staff my regards. Oh, and don't forget your little trinket in here."

The armoured guards arrived, and Nicander stepped away from the ARA device on the deck to accompany the officers, knowing that the transporter inhibitors would demand that they'd beam off the Theurgy from the lobby in the security centre. Surrounded, and with Commander Ducote accompanying, Nicander walked through the security gate with his mismatched hands folded behind his back. He hoped they had taken the proper precaution and chosen a place off ship that couldn't reveal to him where the ship was at, and was pleased to see that a barren room in some kind of space station or ship had been picked.

With armed guards in exosuits surrounding him in the featureless room, with only Ducote staying in his company, Doctor Nicander sat down crosslegged on the floor. He could hear how the precautionary measures were being rigged through Ducote's conversations with various officers on the ship, all three Vectors being swept for more than an hour with anyon emissions, going through the whole available phase variance range in each compartment. Moreover, the airlocks and transporter rooms were being fitted with tech for additional anyon sweeps for all arriving and leaving personnel, which evidently resulted in an additional minute for all personnel that came and went off the ship.

Meanwhile, Nicander sat there patiently, eyes closed. The whisper in his head told him to reach out, and kill everyone around him... but the whisper was readily ignored. Besides, he had surrendered all his means to retain an upper hand and protect himself. He'd surrendered everything in his restored faith in the Theurgy crew's ethical standpoints, the current day's measures the only available resort. He spoke little with Ducote, letting the man focus on the dire coordination of it all.

In the end, there was no contact made with an Infested aboard the ship.

So, Ducote would be able to tell Captain Ives that the Theurgy was safe, and could be kept safe as well, from any infiltration attempts. Furthermore, a lot of research could begin in the Science Department, and better yet, any future faction that might aid the Theurgy could ensure that their halls of power hadn't been infiltrated by the enemy.

Nicander returned to his cell later that day, feeling... optimistic.

By the winds, can this cycle truly be different?

  • Last Edit: September 30, 2019, 08:57:33 AM by Auctor Lucan