Log Mundy, 271018-2237 to 26119-2237

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    Adele Mundy

    Personal Log, Lt. Cmdr. Adele Mundy, TSN Sabre, 2nd Fleet, 4th Lt. Div.
    Stardate: 71218-2237

    Yes, computer, I have not been keeping my log current since we were first stranded in Arcturus System on Stardate 271018-2237. Don’t nag. I have notes, as well you know; it’s a question of finding some time to make them intelligible, and that would require some time to actually stay awake. Being lost in space (again) turns out to be rather time consuming, even when you don’t have an evil empire to avoid.

    So, let’s assume that you can fill in the gaps from official logs, dry and emotionless though they may be, and go on from here. If I ever manage to stay awake longer than required by shift duties and linguistics research, translation, and comms, I’ll go back and fill in the gaps. There’s always retirement, right? I have to leave something to do when I’m stuck planetside somewhere. If we ever get back to any planets. If we can stop getting our ships blown up… So many ifs, dammit.

    That map, or rather, that cartographic object we have been relying on, showed this to be a large system, with a second jump point at a considerable distance from the point we entered by; we also confirmed the presence of a dense, approximately spiral arrangement of bands of nebulae and asteroids, around a locus of several gravity wells. In order to evade notice by the xenophobic and aggressive inhabitants of the system, our shipyard was relocated to a position inside a cluster of low-reflectivity asteroids. While not exactly defensible, it is harder to find as long as power emissions are limited. Which was not too difficult to enforce, since the denabite degradation we have been experiencing since the jump to this system is accelerating. It is only a matter of time before power and warp systems begin to degrade, so the search for denabite deposits continues to be our main priority.

    We have been researching the local alien species as much as possible, given our limited contact. Their language shows some traits suggesting it derives from an archaic form of Kralien, and our xeno-linguistics teams, including yours truly, have been working on compiling a basic vocabulary in order to facilitate communication. Which is a formal and concise way of saying, we have been trying to trace all possible paths between archaic Kralien and the few verbal records we have, and guessing where the patterns might be. Imagine having a partial dictionary of Old Norse, and a partial dictionary of modern German, and trying to work out the existence and grammar of English.

    Yes, well, who needs sleep, eh? Dammit.

    The perfect antidote for sleep deprivation is a stint as Horizon’s Helm officer, as the adrenaline boost is bound to keep one awake… no, Computer, I don’t mean that seriously. It was a sim, thank goodness.

    For our scouting mission, I took a post on Horizon again, this time on Comms — not that there was any communicating to be done with anyone. The Ulikai ships don’t surrender; maybe we haven’t worked out the right way to ask for surrenders yet. We were hampered by repeated technical problems, losing warp and impulse because of the damn denabite degradation. Lancer experienced similar problems, and the engineering teams on the shipyard greeted us with sighs and grumbles when we returned, along the lines of “Well, if you will go and strain all the systems by engaging in combat with sub-par denabite supplies, what do you expect?” Only quieter, and less polite.

    So, after much debate and shuffling of crews, we took Sabre, Viper and Horizon out for the second mission, heading Coreward to scout for alien presence. We tiptoed in silent running around a fleet of Ulikai who were engaged in combat with Skaraans; and had to deal with assorted xenomorphs that were about to threaten the shipyard once we made it back.

    We did read the presence of denabite deposits in the Ulikai mines, with some elsewhere too. The decision was taken to go into the sector, divert Ulikai attention by using Horizon and Sabre as a distraction while Viper sent in Marine teams to collect the denabite, and that’s what we did. On Sabre, I took the Engineering console as well as SciCom — there was little to do on Comms anyway — because our engineer was called away.

    On our return to the shipyard, all engineering crews were called upon to move and refit the denabite crystals; and this is where we found out they weren’t refined to TSN standards, and would likely cause some irregularities in the power supplies. So, better than nothing, but we definitely need to find other sources.

    Contact with the Ulikai allowed Science and Comms officers to scan them more closely, and we did gain a little more knowledge about them: their ships show similarity to Kralien ships, though the internal power readings and the emissions signatures are different. Their energy weapons are different too. And from what we’ve been able to work out, Ulikai means something like The Free, or Those Who Escaped, which leads us to wonder if they might have escaped or broken free from the Kraliens at some point in the past. As is the cry of all researchers everywhere, we need more data, dammit.

    [end log]

    Personal Log, Lt.Cmdr. Adele Mundy, TSN Sabre, 2nd Flt., 4th Lt. Div.
    Stardate: 121218-2237

    After the incursion into Eukua-17, it was clear that there was a strong Ulikai presence there; and suggestions they might also be present in force to Coreward and Spinward. Doesn’t leave a lot of choice, does it? So, Trailingward is where we need to go exploring. All the more urgently, as the ships in the Division are experiencing power fluctuations and malfunctions due to the degraded denabite crystals. These started out as minor inconveniences, but are becoming increasingly severe. Some of the denabite materials we captured last shift were used to replace degraded crystals, but the refining process is to a different standard than required by TSN engineers, and the difference is telling. We’ll need to replace the denabite more often, or develop a way to refine the crystals further. Along the same, depressing, lines, the asteroid fields to which we looked with such hope has proved a disappointment, as the denabite ore present in the asteroids is low grade, and would require complex mining and refining operations to bring it to a usable standard. But we don’t have the facilities, the specialised personnel or the equipment to do that.

    We’re short of power, we’re short of space on the shipyard, so crews have been staying on their ships longer than required by active patrols; and we have been working on intercepted comms from the Ulikai to piece together something intelligible and usable.

    And the loss of Sabre. I can barely remember anything, we were so overwhelmed by enemy fleets. Clouds of drones, and nowhere safe to go, and sudden drops in power, due to the denabite failure, at the most inopportune moments… We sent out a Mayday, and rushed for the lifepods. Next thing I knew, I was in MedBay again, and that brought back all sorts of unpleasantness. But Doc Shah ran her gizmos over my broken arm, and it should be fully mended by next shift; and she was too busy with everyone’s physical injuries to ask too many questions about our mental state. Voiddammit, by this point, anyone who doesn’t have PTSD is probably a psychopath. Or should that be Current Traumatic Stress Disorder?

    [end log]

    Personal Log, Lt. Cmdr. Adele Mundy, TSN Sabre (lost or destroyed), 2nd Space Flt., 4th Lt. Div.
    Stardate: 5119-2237

    The mission briefing was a whole new level of cheerfulness, as we went over the loss of Sabre. We still need to ascertain whether she’s in unrecoverable pieces, or has been towed away by the Ulikai. I don’t need to go on at length about the Ulikai finding out far too much about our tech, either way. We have no new insights on stellar cartography; we’re still trying to work out the Ulikai language from what transmissions we can intercept; and our engineers report the continuing troubles of unreliable denabite.

    Still, Lt. Jr. Starry was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal for his excellent work on improving CiC systems. That should improve our energy efficiency, which with the current denabite situation is always in need of attention.

    We ran a sim before missions: a planned ambush by Hegemony forces leading us to supposedly recover a wreck, where they had set up a fake signal as a lure. In the dense comms traffic that followed, during the attack, there were some messages from the Torgoth ships Comms was supposed to intercept. As I was in command, and running Science and Comms, I missed the critical message,, though I did catch the surrender demand and the mention that the Gate would be locked. Still, we failed the sim mission. When are we going to learn that listening to people is useful?

    The mission involved searching for Sabre, and looking for denabite. Since we can’t take on the full enemy forces, what with them having bases and supplies, and us being somewhat lacking in such things, the idea was to investigate Sector 17 to look for any trace of Sabre, and to find out the feasibility of assaulting local mining operations to pick up more denabite. A tactical ops manoeuvre in Sector 16 was supposed to attract Ulikai attention away from areas we might actually want to survey, while we would go and hide in nearby nebulas, go to silent running, and sneak back to our shipyard.

    Sabre’s crew moved to Lancer for this mission (and, may I add with the benefit of hindsight, for most of the missions that followed), while Capt. Jemel was assigned to stay on the shipyard and keep leading the engineering teams on the denabite refining problem. And, talking of engineers, due to the degrading denabite capacitors, said engineering teams thought it prudent to remove all mines from our ordnance stores. One more reason to sneak around in silent running, dammit.

    As a scouting mission, it was pretty successful. We had Cdt. Bagawan in Engineering — we have to bring all crew members into rotation at this point, as more experienced crew was working on the shipyard with Jemel — who struggled a little, but kept us going and kept us in hiding. The shuttles deployed sensor packages so that we could collect more information. The distraction across Sector 16 seemed to fool the Ulikai about our position, but it was becoming clear that we would need to relocate the shipyard soon; therefore, the sensor analysis team started work on using the data from the sensor packages to map out a scout route in the next sector.

    Another thing they found was traces of Sabre — good news, but qualified by the fact that the readings were not enough to account for the whole ship. We know where she was damaged — dammit, we know that very precisely — but she does not appear to be there. Sensors detected a trail from what appeared to be the impulse drive, so the damage she suffered may be causing an ion leak. So, off for another scouting mission.

    Before I forget, though, I need to note Cdt. Davis’ promotion to Acting Ensign, as he passed his exam with a Bronze pin.

    The next mission was to scout through Sectors 18, 23, 24 and 19, looking for any traces of Skaraans, since we had seen some of their ships earlier, and for any comms chatter that might reveal if Sabre had been found. Of course, this meant translation work. And we were also to look for a place to move the shipyard to. Oh yes, and if we should happen upon any spare denabite just lying around, in whatever state of refinement, we were to pick it up. And the odd transport would be useful too, as extra living quarters.

    All of the above, but without taking any significant damage, on pain of being melted down by Capt. Jemel’s increasingly frustrated engineers and used as a poor substitute for duct tape.

    We did deflect the attention of some Ulikai ships; Horizon captured a transport vessel from another Ulikai fleet, and sent it back to the shipyard with a prize crew aboard, under silent running. We also saw quite dense traffic between Sectors 19 and 25, leading us to suppose there was an established shipping lane; and we witnessed a Skaraan fleet destroying an industrial base before we could take it, or any of its vital supplies. Dammit.

    In Sector 22, we intercepted a message about an “alien asset”, which we assumed was Sabre, but were unable to locate its provenance, or the asset’s location. We did secure some supplies from one of the transport convoys; that, with the capture of the transport ship, with its cargo of heavy equipment, meant we had some additional infrastructure we could transfer some personnel to.

    The transmissions about alien assets, after some analysis, appeared to relate to two different things; one, most likely, Sabre, but the other referred to some other kind of alien, and seemed to relate to Sector 17.

    Understandably, we ran a closing sim on the immediately relevant theme of capturing enemy ships by dropping marines aboard via shuttle. Because we’re going to have to keep doing that for a while.

    And after such an eventful shift, Act. Ens. Davis was duly promoted to full Ensign.

    [end log]

    Personal Log, Lt. Cmdr. Adele Mundy, TSN Sabre (lost or destroyed), 2nd Space Flt., 4th Lt. Div.
    Stardate: 12119-2237

    A little bit of admin for the start of the shift: Lt. Cdr. Vaj was awarded the Practical Proficiency Ribbon for his exemplary coordination of Marine assault teams, execution of rapid deployment and recovery of two teams at the Ulikai denabite refinery. Lt. Xiph was promoted to Lt. Sr.

    The Fleet Captain called on several S.O.s to give briefings. Lt. Cdr. Vaj reported the findings from Stellar Cartography: that while there are no Jump Points in the sectors we have scouted so far, there are strong indications there are Jump Points to Coreward. The bad news being that Coreward is also where the Ulikai bases are, and where the traffic is heaviest — not altogether surprising, as they would tend to cluster around Jump Points. So the best option for us seems to be to circle to Trailing, and hope to find a less congested route to a Jump Point.

    Matsiyan’s report on the tactical situation was as cheerful as his mental mutterings had led me to understand: the need to relocate the shipyard is increasingly urgent. Patrach Kal and CWO Edwards have been tuning the Hjorden low emissions tech and the shipyard powerplant to run at minimum signature, and would start moving the shipyard while we went ahead to scout the way.

    Cmdr. Hall gave us equally cheerful news about the denabite attrition continuing; and slightly better news about the fleet’s vessel recognition database, which has now been updated with entries for the forces we encountered recently.

    I explained our continuing need to add any intercepted Ulikai comms traffic to our translation program. In short, contextual analysis of recognizable semantic symbols allow us to infer a distinct lack of respect for core Kralien interaction modes, especially after we were able to identify common recurring patterns of linguistic drift. We still think that Ulikai and Kralien languages share a common ancestor, but it looks as if the most frequently used semantic signifiers have been deliberately altered to achieve as great a distinction from Kralien as possible. Dammit.

    We ran Horizon and Viper on a sim, then set out in the real ships to gather information. The Fleet Captain took command of Horizon, I took Science, Lt.Sr. Vimes Helm, Lt. Draeco was in Engineering, Lt.Jr. Yooey on Weapons, Lt.Jr. Reynolds on Comms. Matsiyan commanded Viper, with Hall on Helm, Parra on Weapons, Graybeard in Engineering, Vaj as XO and SciCom.

    During our operations to cover the shipyard’s retreat from advancing Ulikai fleets, Viper ran into some trouble, and sent out a mayday, which sent us rushing to the rescue, because to lose one ship may be considered unfortunate, but to lose two smacks of carelessness, dammit. The shipyard was able to go to stealth mode and transition out of the sector, so we were able to take cover in a nebula ourselves, to repair as much as possible, and rebuild our stock of torpedoes. After that, our route took us from Sector 22 into 23 (avoiding the toxic nebula), and into Sector 24.

    We came across a Ulikai freighter and fleet running from Skaraan ships — and because one of the Ulikai ships appeared to be carrying refugees, we attacked and eventually destroyed the Skaraans. Viper recovered a Ulikai black box, indicating the presence of more Skaraans, so we went to silent running.

    In Sector 20 we detected a Skaraan base on the far side of a large toxic nebula, so we deployed a probe to gather more information. We then deployed two shuttlefuls of Marines to take Skaraan station L88, while our two ships took care of the remaining Skaraan ships. With the base in our possession, we were in a much better position in the matter of ordnance and supplies. We set about preparing for the arrival of our shipyard, and evaluating our new situation.

    Although it appeared there were no other installations in the area, we remained alert to the possibility of Skaraan ships returning to their base from missions. Our comms teams set up a fake signal in order to make it look as if the station was operating normally, while we asked ourselves questions about the Skaraan forces, the convoys they were chasing, the number or other life form signals, indicating perhaps refugees. The answers might lie inside the captured black box, so we set about analysing that.

    This was where things became complicated: the black box indicated some kind of situation of distress or constraint, providing coordinates matching some features in this System. The language and protocols appeared similar to N’tani. We surmised these people had been apprehended by the Ulikai and were asking for assistance. So, we had to respond. The fact that we were, and still are, in some sort of distress ourselves is not relevant: we are the TSN.

    Having determined that the signal came from a specific location, we would set out to investigate, being careful not to give away the new position of the shipyard by our movements.

    Ships and crews remained as on the previous mission, with the exception of Cmdr. Hall in CIC. We went through the system looking for the signal location, and took several bases as we searched for the refugees, or prisoners, who had sent the distress call. We also took a great deal of damage, and many casualties. Dammit. Eventually, on one base we found a number of prisoners. A number is a vague term. They were too many for us to carry. We tried capturing a transport ship to place them in, but too many Ulikai ships were responding to their distress calls, and we were too heavily outnumbered. We had to run, much though we hated to do it.

    Viper deployed a sensor relay to keep us updated on events in this sector, and then we fled back to the base on silent running.

    The Fleet Captain tried to put a positive spin on the final debrief, seeing we were all dejected at having failed in our rescue attempt. We now know more about enemy presence in the sector, and, with the data from the sensor array, we’ll be alerted to any attempt to move the prisoners. Any transport vessels are going to be easier to isolate and hold than a heavily defended base, and we’ll be able to use the transport vessel itself, once we capture it, to bring the prisoners to safety.

    [end log]

    Personal Log, Lt. Cmdr. Adele Mundy, TSN Sabre (lost or destroyed), 2nd Space Flt., 4th Lt. Div.
    Stardate: 19118-2237

    Let’s start with admin again: Lt.Jr. Reynolds was awarded the DO ribbon for his recent stint; and Capt. Jemel received the 5 year Service Ribbon for his time with the Division.

    Then, the cheerfulness of reports. Mine included all the stuff I was working on since we recovered the Skaraan base data core: it appears that the Ulikai had their own culture, but were conquered by and administered as a “protectorate” — read, colony — of the Kraliens for so long that their original culture and language were almost extinguished. This explains the presence of so many Kralien language elements, and also the reason why the Ulikai are so intensely xenophobic. The Skaraans, efficient predators that they are, had a large database of Ulikai language, which we have made use of, so that now our translation software effectiveness is approximately 75% that of Kralien. And I could hold a basic conversation with a Ulikai, if they were willing to talk to an alien. Which they aren’t.

    After our recent scouting missions, we’ve updated our Stellar Cartography data, so our map of the system is a little more complete. ONI have further, conjectural data which, as is their wont, they aren’t sharing, citing nebulous security concerns. Computer, I’m way past being diplomatic. They just enjoy not telling people things that people actually need to know, while telling them that the data is “strictly on a need to know basis.”

    The shipyard is now alongside the Skaraan base, and CWO Edwards is continuing to work with Patrach Kal on processing denabite; its final processing can be synthesized using the Skaraan base’s advanced replication facilities, and Chief Edwards has been testing it with some of the Skaraan limited Warp boost modules on the captured Ulikai freighter.

    Our Marine raid on the security base in Sector 25 confirmed the presence of N’tani there, and a sensor buoy hidden in a local nebula is monitoring Sector traffic, in the hope of detecting any movement of the captives. One of the Hjorden cruisers is currently on covert patrol, monitoring the sensor relay, and they report that there has in fact been some comms traffic mentioning non-Ulikai ships. Since we rather expect the Skaraan expedition that went off into Sector 25 to come back some time, we are preparing to defend the station.

    We did run a simulation, but other than the fact that I was commanding Lancer, I… well, dammit, Computer, you have the automated records, and it was a Void-damned sim, so moderate your expectations if you please! We are rather busy staying alive here. Part of the staying alive involved destroying some Ulikai ships and capturing the freighters they were escorting, so that our indefatigable engineers could bolt them onto the station as additional living quarters, which should alleviate the continuing overcrowding.

    One of the Hjorden ships that had been dispatched to Sector 5 returned with the news that the sensor relay there had stopped transmitting, but they did have Ulukai readings from Sector 5 — commercial ships, military presence on the stations, that sort of thing. Among that, they found data on a station on the sector border, and news of a single transport with a military escort, whose registration originated in Sector 17. Based on this, and on previous intel about the presence of prisoners of war on that station, the Fleet Captain decided to intercept the freighter and rescue the prisoners it carried.

    We took Lancer, with the Fleet Captain in command, plus Viper and Horizon. We travelled from Sector 20 to 15, to 9, and as we slowed to impulse speed we sent our Marine contingents on board our shuttles, ready to deploy. We found the transports and their escorts in Sector 4, defeated the escort ships, sent the Marines to board and capture the transport ships; then followed up with medical teams to look after the injured. The Marines identified the prisoners as N’tani. Since there were too many prisoners for us to transfer to our ships, Chief Edwards dispatched a transport ship of our own, which had been temporarily fitted with a boosted engine, to ferry the rescued N’tani prisoners back. And I needn’t tell you what the engineering crews thought of the patched-up job of fitting a transport with a warp core. Still, the patched-up job held long enough to take the rescued prisoners to our base. Meanwhile, we fought a rearguard action against the ships that insisted on chasing them, and us. As we watched our ordnance stores and energy inexorably decrease, we barely made it into the cover or a dense nebula, and silent running.

    We, and the rescued prisoners, were particularly glad of the freighters we had captured earlier, because that meant we had quarters to house them in. Back to overcrowding, but at least we have resources to be overcrowded in. Once the med teams had seen to the most urgent injuries, we were able to talk to some of them, and we found out that some more people were still captive, as they had been shipped out from the base where they were being held. The Fleet Captain ordered Hjorden ships to scout in the direction of Sector 17.

    And at some point during this conversation, our personnel addressed our rescued guests as N’tani… and our rescued guests reacted as if they had been mortally offended. Now what, dammit?

    [end log]

    Personal Log, Lt. Cmdr. Adele Mundy, TSN Sabre (lost or destroyed), 2nd Space Flt., 4th Lt. Div.
    Stardate: 26118-2237

    We have narrowly avoided a diplomatic disaster. Those prisoners we rescued last shift are, by their own definition, most emphatically not N’tani. We thought N’tani was the name of a race; it isn’t. N’tani is the term applied to one clan or tribe or nation of a race, and the people’s name for themselves, for their race, is Silmaran. That would be a bit like calling all humans Tibetans, which is ignorant but might be excusable, except that it’s worse: we didn’t realise that the word N’tani means something like “outcast”, so it would be like calling all humans Pariahs. Dammit. It took protracted apologies and explanations to get the Silmarans to calm down, and tell us that they belong to a tribe (I’m going to use the term tribe, for now. I’m not sure if it’s a tribe, a caste, or something in between) called Kai’torii. We haven’t got as far as asking them why the N’tani were cast out and rejected by the rest of the Silmarans; we thought it might be better to give the matter a little pause.

    The Kai’torii did eventually express gratitude for being rescued, but added that a small part of their number were separated from them, and were understandably concerned about their fate. When we tried to find out who these missing Kai’torii are, our struggles with language made themselves painfully obvious again, as we were told they are some kind of specialist, but when it came to explaining what their specialization is, the terms that came up most frequently in the translation program were: gardener, shepherd, chemist, cowboy. All of which conjures up interesting images of Kai’torii in white lab suits and cowboy hats, holding pitchforks and pipettes, and shouting arcane commands to alien canine-analogues, but is not particularly helpful.

    The Kai’torii did give us some useful data, however, as they told us that they entered the System through a jump point to Core-Spinward relative to our current position. Even better, they can provide astrometric parameters to help us identify and activate the jump point if we can get to within a sector of it.

    Also according to the Kai’torii information, the remaining Silmaran prisoners were supposed to be sent to a military facility in Sector 17. Coincidentally, that is also the sector where ONI suspect whatever remains of Sabre might be, so our two main concerns could lead us in the same direction. The Fleet Captain pointed out that whether Sabre is repairable or not, we need to recover or destroy her: the Ulikai seem particularly adept at adapting alien tech, as we noticed the similarity between their ships and Kralien ships; understandable, given their long history as a Kralien subject people. But they also seem to have adapted tech from Skaraans, whether it was by capturing it or buying it — never put anything past the Skaraans, they’ll sell anything. And therefore we cannot risk the Ulikai learning to adapt and use our tech, whether for their own use or to sell to others: the thought of Ulikai or Skaraan ships with TSN warp drives is, well, concerning, to say the least.

    And of course I feel responsible for abandoning Sabre, dammit.

    As for our current denabite situation, Chief Edwards and Patrach Kal, who have been working together on it, reported that the temporary warp boost we were able to test and use on the freighter that brought the Silmaran is unstable, and will need a complete overhaul and recalibration if we are to mitigate the risk of catastrophic containment failure. Translation: we got away with it once, but don’t rely on it. On the other hand, the engineering teams have started denabite refinement using the Skaraan station’s facilities, and manufacturing of the first replacement batches for the unstable, low-grade denabite has begun.

    We went through admin details: Ens. Wilcon was promoted to Lt.Jr., taking a Helm specialization and passing with a Gold pin; Lt.Jr. Reynolds was promoted to Lieutenant, passing his specialization with a Silver pin, and Lt.Cmdr. Hall received a Special Services ribbon for his continuing work on documentation for the Division.

    Lt.Cmdr. Hall then ran a simulation, of which I remember almost nothing, except that because Cmdr. Aramond and his spanner were needed on the station, I took command of Horizon, while the Fleet Captain remained on Lancer, and Cmdr. Matsiyan was on Viper.

    And that is where we remained as we set out on our mission to free the remaining Silmaran prisoners in Sector 17. In order not to attract attention to our base’s position, we took a fairly circuitous route there and back again, with the warning to conserve energy and ordnance, and of course to expect Ulikai presence on the way. From Sector 20, flying Corewards around the toxic nebula and then Rimwards, we transitioned to Sector 24, then to 23, where we did indeed meet some Ulikai ships and disposed of them so they couldn’t raise the alarm. We proceeded to Sector 18, and to 17, where we scanned the Ulikai stations to find out where the Silmaran prisoners were being held. Once we had their location, Lancer set about distracting the ships that launched from the stations, while Horizon and Viper deployed shuttles to send Marines onto the stations to free the prisoners and bring them back.

    Then it was back to our captured station, once again taking the long way round in the hopes of not drawing attention. Unfortunately, in our absence some Skaraan ships had been nosing about in Sector 20, and realised that the station was only pretending to be still Skaraan; so they had set up an ambush in the nebula and were waiting for us. Lancer drew the Skaraans away from our base, Viper and Horizon attacked them from astern, and we were able to destroy them all before they could damage the station or escape with the news.

    Through the whole operation, good inter-ship coordination ensured that when Lancer attracted the enemies’ attention, the other two ship were ready to attack and pursue; and the fact that we had full bridge crews with dedicated Comms officers meant that they could pay close attention to comms coming from the other ships, and therefore avoid disrupting tactics by not insulting ships that were already engaged.

    I know officers think Comms is the most boring and least critical post on the bridge, Computer. On a long escort mission with no hostile contacts, it can be; I have been known to complain about the excessive quiet myself. But in this case, Comms officers aided the mission’s efficiency. Even so, our poor Comms officer was obviously frustrated by the Ulikai’s universal refusal to surrender. I wonder if that means that Kraliens don’t honour surrenders in general; or if, as a previously subject race, the Ulikai were automatically executed even if they surrendered.

    The information from the Kai’torii we rescued, added to what we were able to piece together from Ulikai comms traffic, led us to believe that what remained of Sabre was being held in a shipyard in Sector 14, near multiple military bases. Therefore, we needed to set out to recover, or destroy her. At this point, it was clear that Lancer could not take part in another long mission, as her denabite stores had degraded too badly. She was taken out of action and put in for denabite replenishment, while her crew transferred to one of the refitted Hjorden cruisers, under the name TSN Necessity. Needless to say, her shuttle was TSN Invention.

    It was a long mission, with multiple encounters with Ulikai and occasional Skaraans. Cmdr. Matsiyan was in CIC, with his XO running Viper, I remained on Horizon (Lt.Cmdr. Hall had taken over Helm after the simulation, which was an inexpressible relief. I am the last person who should criticize other officers’ flying ability, but I was glad to reassign Cdt. Pepor to the Science console), and the Fleet Captain took Lancer’s crew to Necessity. I have to add that the presence of Lt.Sr. Vimes in Engineering was a considerable asset — or, in other words, he was the reason we weren’t dead in space several times over, as we repeatedly went to FCS with only a few percent of our energy stores left. Dammit, they weren’t joking when they said Horizon is an energy hog.

    We did recover Sabre… and a poor ghost of herself she is, at the moment, damaged and stripped of all ordnance, and many systems. But we also recovered two of our DamCon crew, who had been captured by the Ulikai and forced to start making repairs. We had thought them dead when the ship was taken… We had to turn and run from the Sector as fast as we could towards our base, because Ens. Yamamoto was critically injured in the fighting as the Marines were trying to free him and Petrov. He’s now in MedBay on the station, and all we can do is wait. Dammit. I shouldn’t have assumed they were dead. And Petrov says there are two more DamCon being held somewhere, the Ulikai kept them separated and working in alternate shifts. Dammit.

    As for what exactly the Ulikai have managed to take, we are still waiting to find out from the engineering teams. There’s no telling, yet, whether they’ll be able to bring her back into operation by next shift, or whether we’ll need to keep using Lancer, or Necessity. I confess to hoping that fewer Senior Officers will be needed to supervise the denabite refining, so that I might have a chance to do more than just have a look around Necessity’s bridge, and actually find out what her sensor scans and comms capabilities are.

    [end log]


    // Wow!




    More than a mouthful for sure

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