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USS Mercia: The Last Days

[ Ensign Rhys Williams | Meeting Room and Corridors | Deck 10 | USS Mercia ]

“Ensign Rhys Williams.” It took a moment for young Welshman in the immaculate uniform to realise he was being spoken to.  His Ensign insignia was brand new and he was used to being called ‘cadet’. He headed toward the Vulcan officer who was scanning down a PADD of names. “Aye Sir.” Rhys pulled an attention so stiff his back could have been used to hoist flags. The Gold suited Vulcan officer simply raised an eyebrow. “It is agreeable to see you again Ensign.”

Rhys gulped and went a little red at having been recognised. “Thank you Commander Siak.” If anything, the Vulcan’s eyebrow arched further. He then pointed to line of other personnel. “Please wait there while I check everyone is here.” Rhys nodded and stood in the line while looking at his shoes.

It took some time to go through the new additions to the USS Mercia’s crew. When Siak had angrily… or as angrily as a Vulcan could, remonstrated with some late commers, they were led off like a group of school children through the corridors of the aging Constellation class vessel. It felt good and strangely nerve racking to be back aboard at the same time.

His cadet cruise had been taken aboard the vessel and now he was back. Other cadets and some of his instructors had reacted with surprise when he had asked to be stationed back aboard the vessel. What many of them failed to understand was Rhys was not a go getter kind of officer. He wasn’t out to be serving on the most famous and powerful ships in the fleet. That kind of responsibility made him feel sick. As did the possibility of having to integrate with a whole new crew. He knew some of the people on Mercia and the senior staff had especially recognised him for the awkward and psychologically frail person he was.

As Siak continued to give new crew members the run down on the Mercia, what its mission was going to be and led them to their quarters, Rhys tuned out a little. The senior staff confused him a little. The Captain was a very highly decorated officer. Certainly, Captain Watson was far too important to be in charge of this ancient ship. The Mercia at this point in its life it made supply runs to various far flung science stations. On his Cadet run, he had heard rumours among NCOs and other crews that she had pissed off someone important at Starfleet Academy. One the way through the ship he had seen so many crews trying to fix one thing or another the place was a mess. Based on that he thought they might be right.

Eventually Rhys was led to his quarters and just before he entered them, Siak touched his shoulder. “Ensign, some of the junior officers are planning a ‘Welcome to the Mercia’ party.” There was the slightest hint of disapproval in the Vulcan’s voice. “I know you are not the most…. Gregarious individual, you don’t have to come if you don’t wish.” Rhys thought about this for a moment and then shook his head. “No, I’ll probably pop along.” Siak looked a little surprised but nodded and led the other newbies off down the corridor.

As Rhys stepped into his quarters he thought about his decision. He was determined for this to be a new start for him. At the Academy he had often been friendless and alone. Most free time had been, the feeling that he was bad luck in some way was always present. However, he knew that was irrational. He wanted to have friends to be liked. This was good way to do it and what could possibly go wrong. The Universe however, always has interesting ways of punishing such optimism.

Re: USS Mercia: The Last Days

Reply #1
[ Ensign Rhys Williams | Meeting Room and Corridors | Deck 10 | USS Mercia ]

The Lounge on Deck 12 was full, heaving filled with a mix of new and old faces. Already people had seemed to sort themselves into groups. The high-flying ambitious types were gathered together in small groups talking energetically about work, while sipping syntheholic beverages. Then there were the people who Rhys just knew were going to be trouble on this voyage. They were gathered in moronic groups and were the only ones drinking real alcohol. Then there were the Rhys’ of the Universe. Awkwardly alone at the edges of the room or attached to one of the other groups sitting speaking very little and nodding along no matter what was being said.

At a certain point Commander Siak banged the flat of his hand loudly on the table in front of him. Silence gradually descended and the Vulcan nodded. “The Captain…” Moving in front of the assembled crew, was a woman in Command Red. She was very tall pushing six feet easily, dark skinned and there was an aura of authority that exuded from her. She appeared to be in her early 40’s and spoke with a slight accent, suggesting to Rhys she was from South Africa.

The speech contained the usual pleasantries that could be expected at this kind of thing. However, a few things really stood out to him. “I do hope that this crew will become like a family for all of you. After all, I have come to learn that family are really the only ones you can trust.”[/color] Rhys noticed a few confused glances, but the comment seemed to fly over most of the crew’s heads. Rhys noticed a degree of tension in Siak’s body as the Captain had uttered those words. Watson herself had an especially grim look on her face. “To our vitally important mission, transporting cargo.”[/color] She said the sarcasm dripped from every word so even those who were not good at reading people picked up on that. “Now everyone enjoy the party, but please show up in a condition for duty tomorrow.”[/color] She said with a faint smile. She downed her glass and made to leave. Commander Siak shadowing her closely.

Curious, Rhys edged towards the side of the bar not far from the exit. Siak and the Captain passed by him, and out of the corner of his eye Rhys saw Siak reach out hand to grab the Captain by the arm. It was shocking to Rhys that someone would do that to their superior officer. “It was unwise to say that.” Hissed Siak, trying his best to keep his voice down. The Captain looked around for a moment, and Rhys did his best to play the role of a man waiting to be served his drink. “I just want everyone on their toes.”
Siak raised his eyebrow. “What are we keeping them on their toes for exactly? You know it is unwise to tell them.”

There was a pause and a heavy sigh. “I just hate that they are blind in this.”[/color] The voices started to get quieter as the two of them moved towards the door. Rhys tapped the top of the bar thoughtfully. “Heard what you want to?” A voice hissed in his ear. Shocked Rhys whirled around. He almost knocked a drink out of the hand of the gold suited security officer in front of him. The Officer was Bajoran man who towered over Rhys and Rhys was tall. “I wasn’t listening to anything.” Said Rhys his heart beating quickly. “Good… enjoy the party.” Replied the officer with an expression that could bore through Uridium. “Sir.” Squeaked Rhys.

Rhys made his way as quickly as he could away from the bar and security officer. The tables had mostly started to empty as a soft slow song started to play. Various members of the crew had paired up and started to dance. Rhys sat and quietly watched the writhing mass of bodies. People, laughing, people talking, people singing, even some people kissing. So many people, and in just over a month most of them would be dead.

Re: USS Mercia: The Last Days

Reply #2
[ Ensign Rhys Williams |  Corridors | Deck 20 | USS Mercia ]

2 Weeks later…

Most people would have found life aboard the Mercia unbearably monotonous. There were no border skirmishes with Romulans, no battles of wits with enemy commanders. There was no interesting scientific phenomenon for the science freaks to lose their minds over. No new intelligent life to find. No intelligent plants… not even a stupid plant. Just one transport journey after another. Supplies being dropped off at space stations in unimportant sectors of Federation space. This caused all sorts of issues especially for many of the crew and junior officers. Boredom and seeming aimlessness bred discipline problems. Security always seemed to have their work cut out of them and especially Arva Molz the Bajoran Chief of Security who had caught Rhys eavesdropping a few weeks ago.

The man seemed to be everywhere, and made Rhys feel very uneasy. He always felt like he and the other newer members of the crew were being watched constantly. It made little sense to Rhys, the new members of the crew were on the whole much better behaved the newness had not rubbed off the ship for them yet, and the boredom had yet to set in.

Certainly Rhys was not bored. He had the kind of mind that could easily cope with repetitive tasks. It was an escape of sorts, almost a kind of a meditation. A chance to shut out the destructive voices that were always threatening to take over. There was always so much to do, the ship always seemed like it was about to fall about. Engineering and operations staff were always busy. He was amazed the ship had been allowed to leave space dock in this condition, it was a death trap. He knew that Constellation class vessels were an old design that Starfleet were on the verge of discontinuing, and that the Mercia was an especially old example, but this was ridiculous. However, he was an Ensign and a fresh and shy new one with a myriad of problems with self-confidence there was no way he was going to raise any concerns.

It wasn’t just the ship that was faulty, the senior staff especially felt odd to him. He had not really noticed it on his cadet cruise, but now they all seemed so jumpy and tense. Even the Captain who he had remembered as being pretty laid back, was snapping at members of the crew then apologising afterwards.

Still Rhys was not going to let that get that ruin his first few weeks aboard. Rhys was happily whistling to himself as he walked along a corridor on deck twenty, his engineering kit in hand. His shift was over, and he was returning to his quarters, when he heard a thud come from a nearby Jeffries tube. “Hello?” He removed the opening and looked up the ladder in front of him. “Does someone need help in there?” He slowly climbed the ladder up to the next level. The lights in the tube flickered on and off. He his mouth went dry and he felt his heart beating faster. It was silent now apart from a sparking noise coming from up ahead. He crawled forward cautiously. A few meters up ahead he saw the issue, a conduit seemed to have blown. “What… but I replaced that last week.” He muttered a few curses under his breath and opened his kit. It was damaged quite badly the whole unit would need replacing. “Williams to Engineering. I’ve got a blown power conduit at my location.”

Before he could get a response there was another loud noise this time from behind him. He turned quickly. Standing on the ladder aiming a phaser at him was Chief of Security Arva Molz. “Well we are in trouble young man.” Rhys’ brow furrowed in confusion. “Sir… what are you…”

“Don’t sir me! Not when I’ve caught you sabotaging the ship.”

Horrified Rhys was covered in a cold sweat as a lead weight descended on his stomach. “But I…”

“Are you going to come with me, or will I have to stun you?” Rhys’ raised his hands as best as he could in the confined space.

Re: USS Mercia: The Last Days

Reply #3
[ Ensign Rhys Williams | Corridors | Deck 20 | USS Mercia]

Rhys was sweating, he could feel the coldness streaming over his body which suddenly felt feverish. Chief of Security Arva Molz had not come alone. Once Rhys was out of the Jeffries tube, he found himself confronted with a human woman and an Andorian. Both of them where armed with phasers. Rhys had never really had a phaser pointed at him in his life beyond training scenarios at the academy.  It was disconcerting to say the least, that a few adjustments to the phaser and he would be very very dead. “Walk slowly ahead of me, we are going to the brig for a little chat.” Rhys was about to speak in protest by the slight movement of the woman behind Molz persuaded him this would not be a great career move.

So, Rhys turned and walked a few steps ahead keeping his hands visible to the security officers at all times.

[ Ensign Rhys Williams | The Brig | USS Mercia]

It did not take long for Rhys and his unwanted entourage to arrive at the brig. “Nice and slowly Ensign.” Molz’s meaning was clear though he still used his phaser to indicate which cell was to be Rhys’. The movement of that phaser made the young man wince. Rhys nodded and step inside.

A moment later, there was a buzz and the momentary shimmer of a forcefield appearing across the opening. Rhys awkwardly took a seat on the bench and looked out at his captors. Molz had a smirk on his face, that made Rhys shuffle uncomfortably in place. Molz spoke without looking at the woman behind him. “Jenna, call the Captain.”

“I’ve not done anything wrong.” Said Rhys with rather more defiance than he felt.

“Oh we will see about that, but ultimately that is for the Captain to decide.”

Jenna returned. “The Captain will be along soon.”

“Good the two of you can leave for now, I can keep an eye on this one.”
The other two security officers nodded and left.

Re: USS Mercia: The Last Days

Reply #4
[ Ensign Rhys Williams | Corridors | Deck 20 | USS Mercia]

The brig was quiet. Arva simply at the security desk his eyes trained on Rhys. The Security chief was smiling, but there was no warmth to it. It was a cold triumphant smile like that of a cat that has spotted a bird with a broken wing. Rhys occasionally found himself glancing at the Bajorans face but mostly he kept staring down at the floor.

Arva eventually shook his head still smiling that awful smile. “I had a feeling you were one, and now you are in so much trouble.”

“One what?”
Rhys found his voice coming unbidden by any conscious thought. Arva snorted loudly. “Don’t play me. It will go worse for you.” The way Arva was talking made no sense to Rhys, it was like he was trying to intimidate him. It ought to have been obvious to anyone with even basic observation skills that Rhys was already terrified and pretty easy to scare at that. Maybe this guy just got off on behaving like this, but there was more to it. The Gold suited man was watching every little move Rhys was making. This wasn’t ordinary maliciousness something else was going on.

Eventually the doors opened and Captain Watson and Commander Siak entered. Rhys stood when the approached his cell which only caused Arva to grip his phaser tighter. Rhys was passing right through terror and out into the other side with anger. There was a forcefield between them what did he expect Rhys to do? Its when it hit him what he was seeing. This was paranoia and fear. This big strong Security officer was afraid of him, possibly the least intimidating looking officer in the fleet.

The Captain stood in front of him her arms folded across her chest and a severe appraising look on her face. Siak was a pace or two behind and looked as he always did impassive, face as unchanging as a cliff face. Arva rushed over to her side. “Captain we’ve got one.”

“How sure are you?”

“Very caught him crawling around a Jeffries tube where one of the sabotages had happened.”

Siak raised an eyebrow. “That’s hardly sufficient evidence.”

Arva looked like he was about to respond when the Captain raised her hand. “We have to be cautious.”

“Its not just that either, I caught him eavesdropping on a conversation between you two Sir!” The Captain’s face took on a sterner countenance. “What’s your name and rank young man?”

“Ensign R…Rhys Williams.” Rhys just managed to force it through his lips. He felt cold and could feel himself shaking. There was a glint in the Captain’s eyes for a moment. “Ensign Rhys Williams hmm? I think I remember signing your transfer order. Are you by any chance related to Anna Williams?”

Rhys’ eyes went wide. “Yes she was my mother.” He saw the Captain smile just for a moment. “I thought so, you look very like her. We graduated together, I can’t tell you how often she pulled me ass out of the fire with tests.”

She looked grave again. “I was devastated to hear that she had died. Mae'n ddrwg gennyf.” Rhys was surprised to hear her speak Welsh. “Diolch.” He responded automatically. “She taught me a few phrases, but I could never get a handle on it... too many Ys and Ds.”

She tapped her chin fro a moment and then spoke again. “Never understood why she wanted to serve the Lichfield. She was an excellent engineer but she always wanted to be on an Excellsior class, when she could have served anywhere.”

“She thought they were the most beautiful ships in the fleet.” Said Rhys with feeling rather confused at the Captains odd line of questioning.

“She did indeed.” The captain nodded. She turned to her security chief, “Let him go, he is not one of them.”

Arva was furious. “What but I...”

“Wrong place at the wrong time I suspect. Keep an eye on him by all means but I doubt one of them would bother to go into that much detail for a cover story.”

Siak interjected, “We could try and get some readin...”

Watson interrupted him again. “You know they are resistant to tricorder scans we would learn nothing.” She turned to Rhys and fixed him with a steely gaze. “Mr Williams, I am sure you are brimming with questions. I however can not answer any of them. I suggest you take the rest of the day off and forget that this ever happened.”

With that she turned and left leaving Arva and Rhys feeling they had just survived a very genteel tornado. Try as he might Rhys doubted he would ever forget that meeting for the rest of his life. 

Re: USS Mercia: The Last Days

Reply #5
[ Ensign Rhys Williams | Meeting Room and Corridors | Deck 10 | USS Mercia ]

One week later

Rhys was given a few days off. This in no way helped his mood. Without the distraction of work in short order he found himself fixating on what had happened to him. He had returned to his quarters shaking, cold shivers flashing up and down his body. His heart beating a furious tattoo, sweat covering his skin, his throat so dry he drained four glasses of water before he felt any better. Much to his horror he found himself close to tears. He had been tempted to talk to the ship’s counsellor, but then he had remembered the Captain’s instructions.

The Captain had insisted that he speak of what happened to no one. He was sure the councillor would count. Raising it with the Captain seemed utterly out of the question. Rhys was the kind of person who bottled things inside in any case, but even he was distressed at having no one to confide in.

On top of everything else his leave was not going any better. It felt like everywhere he went there was a security officer around. It was like being under house arrest. Worse were the occasions when Arva was there himself. He seemed to fix Rhys with a hard stare the whole time he was around. Clearly, he still thought Rhys was… who or whatever they were looking for. It was obvious to Rhys that they were looking for something or someone hiding amongst the crew. The sense of paranoia among the senior staff was palpable.

The only members of the senior crew he felt any affinity for were Captain Watson and Commander Siak. More Siak than Watson perhaps. He found her hard to read and saw her very little. Siak however he saw very often. The Vulcan seemed to have developed a very un-Vulcan like protective instinct for Rhys. Once Rhys returned to duty, Siak took the young man to one side.

“I have asked the operations department to take you off the duties you were doing in Jeffries tubes.” Rhys blinked in surprise.

“Given what happened to you last week Ensign I would have thought that was obvious. I respect Lt. Arva, but he can be overzealous and genuinely suspects you.”

Frustrated Rhys flapped his arms in an uncharacteristic display of frustration. “Look Sir please can you tell me what is going on.”

Siak, seemed uncomfortable he chewed on his lip as if mulling over how to respond. “We… suspect the Federation has been infiltrated…. That’s all I can say.” When Rhys gave a start and was about to ask more questions Siak interrupted “I can’t say anymore dismissed Ensign.”

The Vulcan had turned on his heels leaving Rhys standing with his mouth opening and closing like a fish on dry land.

His first posting, which Rhys had had such high hopes for had gotten off to a horrific start. It was frightening when even a Vulcan was showing signs of concern and worry.

Re: USS Mercia: The Last Days

Reply #6
[ Ensign Rhys Williams | Mess Hall | Deck 10 | USS Mercia ]

2 Weeks later

Rhys was sat in the mess hall. In his hands his customary cup of tea. He drank it quite strong, the tea bag hanging around in the tea like a person who has fallen asleep in the bath. Then the milk was introduced to it, just a splash and Rhys was in heaven. His mother had always jokingly called it ‘Builder’s tea’. He smiled at the thought of her and not for the first or last time wished she was still around.

He was not alone, which was a rarity in itself. At the table were two others a man and a woman. Chris Sharp, an incredibly cheerful Lieutenant and head of the operations department. He was always speaking in energetic and excitable tones. Despite the Mercia’s rather boring and unimportant assignment he treated every moment on board as if it was some big adventure. Then next to him was an Ensign from the Engineering department. Rose Brooks, affectionately known by everyone as Rosie. She and Chris had apparently known each other for some time. It was rumoured they were dating but both had always denied it. Rosie in contrast to Chris was much terser. Still friendly but much less open than her colleague.

Rhys was not sure how the two of them had ended up attaching themselves to him. Rhys kept quiet, and barely spoke to anyone aboard. However, Chris in particular seemed to view Rhys as some sort of project. He was always trying to get him involved in things. Rosie just looked on apologetically. Chris was happily chatting away while engulfing more than eating lunch. Watching him eat food was like watching people forking hay through a barn door. He also had a tendency to talk with his mouth full which was a little unsettling.

Chris suddenly topped and took a moment to swallow and presumably breath. “Hey Rhys, aren’t’ you meant to be doing maintenance on those power conduits?” Rhys opened his mouth in surprise for a moment. “No, I was taken off them.” Chris looked at him sharply.
“What? I haven’t’ changed the rota Mr.”

“Commander Siak said he had asked you take me off them.”

Chris’ brow furrowed. “No. He’s not spoken to me.”

Rosie interjected at this point. “You probably forgot.” She said dryly. “Like how you forgot Petrovic and Snyder were on leave.”

Chris looked at her with irritation. “I didn’t…” He paused “Oh wait I did I remember.” He looked up at Rhys. He knew Rhys was a worrier.

“Don’t worry she is right probably my fault.” He noisily slurped at his coffee, it sounded like a canal being drained. “My Desk is a mess.”

Rosie nudged Rhys. “Hey Rhys, Arva is staring at you.” Rhys, his heart pounding wheeled around. There indeed was Arva, nursing a drink and staring at him with no subtlety whatsoever. Rhys could feel a tightness in his chest. Chris misreading things entirely chuckled. “Does he fancy you or something?”

Rhys, uncomfortably drained his tea stood up and left.

Re: USS Mercia: The Last Days

Reply #7
[ Ensign Rhys Williams | Captain's office| Deck 1 | USS Mercia ]

Rhys had never been in the Captain’s office before. There were very few items around that might give someone an idea of her personality. Her desk and surrounding area were tidy, nothing was out of place. Rhys silently approved having a bit of tendency towards being a neat freak and well organised. The Captain made a gesture towards the chair on the other side of the desk indicating he should sit. Rhys did so, his hands bunched up nervously, the palms already beginning to sweat.

Captain Watson approached the replicator and ordered herself a coffee. She looked at Rhys for a moment, “Want anything Ensign?” Rhys still too nervous to trust his voice shook his head. She rolled her eyes theatrically. “For God’s sake boy relax.” Rhys tried to let the tension fall out of his limbs it didn’t really work. There was still a tremble to his hands. The Captain sighed and took her seat, “Not surprising I suppose given what happened to you a few weeks ago.”

Rhys said nothing. The Captain drummed her fingers on her desk for a moment. “Look you’re not stupid, or at least I hope you aren’t. You must have picked up some semblance of what’s going on.” She looked at him expectantly, he understood why she was a Captain. She had an outward confidence that in a lesser person might have been mistaken for arrogance. She also had this ability to be at once motherly and kind and in the next moment could pin him to the chair with an icy chair. Charismatic was the word. She saw inside you all the little switches and dials and knew which ones to push to make you do as she wished.

Rhys gulped, “I suspect, that you think there is some kind of hostile force hiding among the crew.” She smiled delightedly like a teacher at a star pupil. “Well done, though ‘think’ is the wrong word. ‘Know’ is more appropriate.” Rhys looked at her with wide concerned eyes. “Now Commander Siak and Lt. Commander Arva think I shouldn’t tell you any of this. However, as I suspected you are not stupid, and you have already guessed part of the tale yourself.” She steepled her hands on her desk. “Its too tempting for you to share this with you friends, especially as I told you to tell no one.”

Rhys’ mouth opened “But I haven’t…”
“Really?” Captain Watson gave a look that was more than what some called an ‘old fashioned look’ this one was practically pre-historic.
Captain Watson surveyed his face that was handsome, so very very young and above all honest. There was something of Anna Williams in there. Though he was much more serious and humourless it seemed. “Ok.” She said nodding. “I believe you. Besides if Arva is right and you are one of them, you already know I know all about you, and if not, not knowing could put you in danger considering the incidents of sabotage.”

“Who are they…” He paused for a moment “Sabotage?”

The Captain shook her head, “And you had been doing so well. The issues with the power conduits, obvious sabotage and who ever is responsible sort to blame some poor hapless Ensign, no offence.”

For just a moment Rhys had anger take over, “Yet Arva still thinks its me.

Watson raised an eyebrow in clear amusement. “Don’t be concerned my Chief of Security suspects everyone. He took an advanced course in how to be a suspicious bastard.”

Rhys muttered “But it could be him just as much as it could be me.”

The Captain sipped her drink and smiled. “The thought had occurred to me, but I think not. He is a simple uncomplicated fellow, don’t suspect him just because of what’s happened to between you two.”

The way she was talking made him feel uneasy, so informal with just an ensign. “Why are you telling me this.”

“Because you could be useful, I’ve had a…” At that moment the ship rocked, a conduit running through the wall of the office blew, spraying both of them with shrapnel as Rhys felt himself blasted out of his seat.

It was now one hour until the end.

Re: USS Mercia: The Last Days

Reply #8
[ Ensign Rhys Williams | Captain's office| Deck 1 | USS Mercia ]

Rhys heard the blare of red alert, as if it was coming from a long way. His head felt heavy and as he moved a little his back and shoulder exploded in pain. There was a familiar voice somewhere above him. “The warp core has taken a heavy hit; I am no engineer, but we’ve not got long.” That was the voice of Commander Siak.  
“I’ve already begun trying to get the crew off, but lots of the ship is inaccessible and coms are down in certain areas.” Arva’s voice sounded like he was trying to hang on to his calm by a thread.

“Chief Engineer, and Chief of Operations… are they…?” That was the captain’s voice. He did not hear any response but even as clouded as his mind was the silence spoke louder. “Anyone on the around Engineering is probably dead or otherwise incapacitated.”

Rhys found himself sitting bold up right, he had been propped up in the corner. He felt around his head and found a piece of material had been tied there. “Dead..” He said suddenly. The other three officers turned to look at him. Commander Siak knelt by him and placed a hand on Rhys’ shoulder. “Try and relax.” The voice sounded off to Rhys almost reassuring.

“Captain we have to get to the escape pods.”


“Sir, the Mercia is dead.” Said Arva solemnly. “And if we don’t leave soon, we will be to.”

“But the intruder…”

Siak interrupted impatiently. “Likely dead, and if not at this stage there is nothing, we can do about them now.”

The Captain sighed a weary sigh and looked at Rhys “Mr Williams can you walk?” Rhys rose unsteadily to his feet, he felt very weak and was leaning on the Commander for support, but his limbs seemed to be able to move. “Yes sir.” He responded.

The next few minutes dragged on, as the four of them made their painful way to the escape pods trying to phaser their way through sealed and broken doors as they went. “What exactly happened?” Said Rhys weakly.

“A series of flawlessly timed explosions cut power to most of the ship and damaged the warp core. Obvious sabotage.” A nagging feeling scratched at the back of Rhys’ mind.

Re: USS Mercia: The Last Days

Reply #9
[ Ensign Rhys Williams | Escape Pods| Deck 4 | USS Mercia ]

‘Flawlessly timed explosion.’ The phrase echoed around Rhys’ skull, as he tried to understand such a strange phrasing. Rhys at this point followed the senior officers like a ghost. He was not really present, he felt confused and off, in all likely hood he was concussed. Its probably why that single phrase was sticking in his mind so much, head obviously taken a big whack to the head.  Arva lead the way down the corridors the Captain following him close while Siak stuck close to Rhys’ side.

The four of them raised down to the deck that had the majority of escape pods on it. They were scattered through out the ship but were concentrated in certain areas. Ahead, they heard banging and screaming. A door had slammed shut presumably as part of a sequence to prevent the spread of fires. There was screaming on the other side. “Shit!” The Captain raced up to the door trying to look for a way to over ride its controls. “Help Siak they are trapped.” Rhys felt the Commander let go of him and leave Rhys leaning against a bulk head near an escape pod hatch. Arva had joined the Captain at the door.

“Oh they won’t be leaving the ship…. And neither will you.” Rhys looked dazed as ahead of him, Siak fired his phaser at Arva. His eyes went wide as the energy beam slammed into his chest and he crumpled to the floor. Siak’s voice was tinged with an unvulcan cold delight. He fired a second time at the Captain, who was able to duck behind some wreckage at the last moment. “You fucker you are the parasite.” She yelled.

Suddenly the last few weeks all started to line up for Rhys in his head.

“It’s a shame to kill Arva he was such a useful moron. Reach for the first explanation that presents its self. No wonder taking over the Federation has been so easy.” Rhys dizzy and confused stared at Siak’s back. “Our injured little Lieutenant was so helpful to. Weak, simple and suggestible.” Rhys felt an unusual feeling he was not used to. A hot feeling behind his eyes, tears were threatening to come but it was more than just distress. He wanted to silence that smug voice forever. Clearly the Commander no longer saw him as a threat, he was pretty beat up after all.

Rhys quietly tried to pull himself upright, and as he saw Siak sighting along the phaser for another shot. Rhys screamed and barrelled into Siak which caused him to stumble his shot went into the ceiling and phaser was sent skittering across the floor.

Rhys attempted to grip his arms and hold them but Siak’s arms felt as strong as iron bars. Wham, an elbow went back into Rhys’ jaw causing him to fold up. However, by now the Captain had run for cover and was attempting to subdue him. “Get out of here.”

“But….” Rhys hesitated caught between fear and anger. Siak throw a punch that sent her sprawling back into Rhys, blood pumping from her nose. She smiled grimly at him. “Good luck Mr Williams", and she pushed him forcefully through the hatch into the escape pod. He just had time to see her press some controls and a shape leap from the shadows on to her. The escape pod rocketed away from the Mercia at great speed. What followed was a huge explosion as the ship detonated, the shock wave caused Rhys to black out, as his pod spun lonely through the debris.

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