USS ANUBIS - Mission 05
USS BASTET - Mission 02
Explosions, Shadows & Trouble
POST INDEX
Post # Character Title
B001 Iverson Upgrade
B002 Janeel Identity
B003 Lopez Heal Thyself
B004 Valentine Stragglers
B005 Janeel Reporting In
A001 Morningstar Big Brother
B006 Valentine Seeing Red
B007 Mitshiba Excited
A002 Shar'El The GAMMA ERADI Cluster
A003 Doyanne Radaway
B008 Janeel Shape Of Things To Come
B009 Mitshiba Anxious
B010 Lopez Talking
B011 Janeel Something Strange
A004 Stark Back in Action
A005 Shar'El Not Being Seen
B012 Valentine Alone in a Crowded Universe
A006 Ya'Han Girl Talk
B013 Mitshiba Transdimensional Travels 101
B014 Iverson Special Project
B015 Lopez Psychoanalysis
A007 Shar'El Girl Talk, Encore
A008 Paquette Bored Redhead
A009 Stark Staying Awake
B016 Janeel Sealed Orders
B017 Iverson Mission Update
A010 Shar'El Girl Talk, ILO Style
B018 Mitshiba The USS RAMAN
A011 Morningstar Different Similarities
B019 Valentine The Unknown
B020 Lopez Charming
B021 Janeel Hidden Dangers
A012 Ya'Han Sharpening Claws
A013 Stark Fine Calculations
A014 Morningstar An Explosive Arrival
B022 Mitshiba Unseen and Unknown
A015 Shar'El Rushing Into Hell
A016 Ya'Han When Nothing Works
B023 Valentine Small Things Mean Big...
A017 Stark The USS PLOW
B024 Janeel Something Different
B025 Mitshiba Anticipation
A018 Ya'Han Tough Little Thing
B026 Valentine Hole In The Net
B027 Mitshiba Analysis
A019 Stark Licking Wounds
A020 Shar'El Picking Up The Pieces
B028 Iverson Fixing Things Up
B029 Lopez Easier Said Than Done
B030 Valentine What Lies in Shadows
B031 Mitshiba Unseen Fears
B032 Janeel Something Strange
A021 Stark Shadowhunting
A022 Shar'El Looking for Something
B033 Lopez A Personal Argument
A023 Ya'Han Past Feelings
A024 Paquette Zipping and Bumping
B034 Mitshiba Living Darkness
A025 Shar'El Finding Something
A026 Stark Freezing Assets
B035 Valentine Shadow Paranoia
B036 Janeel Shadow Meeting
B037 Mitshiba Icy Darkness
A027 Ya'Han Shadows of the Past
A028 Morningstar The Changing Shape...
B038 Valentine The Blue Planet
B039 Lopez Simple Madness
Post # Character Title
A029 Stark Heading Back
A030 Ya'Han Declassified Information
B040 Mitshiba Small Steps
A031 Paquette Cinderella And The Core Chat
A032 Shar'El Understanding A Madman
A033 Morningstar Odds, Probabilities and...
B041 Iverson Tight Fit
B042 Valentine Maybe Too Friendly
B043 Lopez Sociological Review
B044 Janeel The Intel Perspective
B045 Mitshiba Stars and Rocks
B046 Lopez Shattered
A034 Maya Too Much Time
B047 Valentine Survival
B048 Mitshiba Identity
B049 Janeel Morning Report
B050 Lopez Sisterly Discussion
B051 Mitshiba The Allure
B052 Lopez Counseling House Call
B053 Valentine Emergency Meeting
B054 Janeel Finding Something...
B055 Lopez Prime Debate
B056 Mitshiba The Inside Scoop
B057 Valentine More Pieces To The Puzzle
B058 Lopez Trying To Understand
B059 Iverson Discussion
B060 Valentine A New Direction
B061 Mitshiba Research
B062 Janeel Trust Issues
B063 Lopez Not In Her Right Mind
B064 Iverson Secrets
B065 Mitshiba Condensed Time
B066 Janeel Time to Wake Up
B067 Lopez Chatting
B068 Valentine A Vanishing Mystery
B069 Janeel Another Time, Another Place
B070 Mitshiba A Timely Discussion
B071 Lopez Questions and Actions
B072 Valentine An Untimely Twist
B073 Mitshiba Time to Get Moving
B074 Janeel Solid Time
B075 Valentine Time the Harsh Master
B076 Janeel Time's Up
B077 Lopez Frazzled Nerves
B078 Valentine Out of Time
B079 Janeel Getting Loopy
B080 Lopez Grieving
B081 Mitshiba Time For a New Theory
B082 Valentine Edge of Time
B083 Lopez Dark Emptiness
B084 Janeel Alone
B085 Iverson Sometimes Luck Is...
B086 Valentine Time for a Break
B087 Lopez Broken Hopes
B088 Janeel Not If But When
B089 Mitshiba Temporal Mood
B090 Iverson The Talk
B091 Lopez Restoring Hope
B092 Janeel Time to Move
B093 Mitshiba Time Slipping By
B094 Janeel Bad Timing
B095 Valentine When It All Started
B096 Lopez Not So Unexpected
B097 Mitshiba Twisted Timelines
B098 Iverson Time For A Reset
B099 Janeel The Circle is Now Complete
B100 Iverson Back Home
M02-P100: USS BASTET: Iverson: Day 35 - 1100 ("Back Home")
---
"Back Home"
(Previous Post: "The Circle is Now Complete")
---

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31233.1100

During their journey back to NEW ALEXANDRIA the primary clock of the USS BASTET had been re-synched to the rest of the Federation network. Given all of the time traveling backwards and forward they had done while in the J'Den dimension, it had been surprising to many that there had been only a minor discrepancy between the official time and that found on board the ship.

"There she is," Commander Valentine announced as the GEZA Nebula came into view on the main forward display, the large asteroid that housed the secret base and their home barely visible even if one knew where to look.

Selene hid her smile. It had been nice to being back home after all that they had endured and gone through, but the Captain had never been one to outwardly show emotions, however exceptionally good or heart wrenching bad they might be.  "Commander, please transmit all required clearance codes and confirm our approach trajectory. It would be a shame for us to be destroyed due to a simple mistake."

"We are receiving the encoded transmissions from the relay stations," Lieutenant Mitshiba reported, "there will not be any mistakes made Captain. I would not want anything to happen to our new Temporal Drive... or us for that matter."

Ensign Lopez actually laughed as if she had heard a joke that no one else had.  "Everyone has a specific goal in mind," the Counselor explained. "Misaki is likely looking forward to further studying the drive and the schematics that were provided to us by Shutaar and Lenaas. I for one am simply looking forward to spending some relaxing time in my bed *without* any time displays or alarms to be seen or heard."

"As simple as your goal may be Lieutenant," Commander Janeel offered as she came to stand between the Counselor and stilling Captain, "it is one that I can easily see myself doing. That is right after I have gone to sickbay to address this lingering headache."

"Still suffering from trying to understand all that time traveling?" Captain Iverson asked, almost sounding amused by the entire thing.

"Unfortunately," Janeel chuckled, "I am far from being as versed or comfortable with that subject matter as the rest of you, and especially not Lieutenant Mitshiba who clearly could be playing in this for years to come without uttering a single complaint."

"What can I say?" the Chief Science Officer jumped in with, "I like to spend my free time looking into scientific matters that make it worth my time."

"You are just being cruel now," Adriana chuckled as she shook her head.

"Helm," the Captain ordered wanting everyone back on their duties so that they could actually make it home instead of just talking about it.  "As soon as our course for final approach has been cleared, engage thrusters and take us home."

"Aye, aye, Captain."

---
Setting: NEW ALEXANDRIA, Section A, Level 6, Admiral Koniki's Office
Stardate: 31234.0800

"You wished to see me?" Captain Iverson inquired as she walked into the Office of Admiral Koniki, Head of the NEW ALEXANDRIA secret complex. The questions had been only meant as a polite way to announce her presence, the Commanding officer of the BASTET having been summon to this very location the night before.  Her instructions had been straight forward enough: report to the Admiral for 0800, so here she was.

"Good morning Captain," the Admiral acknowledged inviting the woman to enter the huge office which suited the man perfectly.  "I read your report on the J'Den, most interesting,  Have a seat, there are things we need to discuss."

Whatever misgivings Selene might have had about the upcoming 'discussion', the Captain knew her place and role in this organization, so she approached and sat in the chair that had been offered to her.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Observation Lounge
Stardate: 31234.1500

All of the officers which formed the Senior Staff of the USS BASTET had been gathered in the room, everyone expecting their Captain to report on her meeting for the Admiral and what their next task would be.

"Are we being sent out to another dimension?" Commander Valentine mused as she took her seat.

"As long as we don't have to go bouncing through time, I will be happy," Commander Janeel added.

"I suspect that you will soon be the happiest member on board the BASTET," the Captain stated as she looked at her Intelligence Liaison Officer. "Admiral Koniki has ordered the temporal drive and all material relating to it to be transferred to NEW ALEXANDRIA for further research."

"It will take *days* to get the temporal drive out of our systems," the Chief Science Officer objected. "and it will likely take weeks to recalibrate everything including the Dimensional Jump Drive. Surely the Admiral does not wish to see the BASTET inactive and useless for that long?"

"Actually," Selene sighed, her eyes closed as she dreaded making the next part of her announcement. "The BASTET and crew are as of now on indefinite inactive duty.  Each and every member of the crew is to report to the Counseling department of NEW ALEXANDRIA for psychological evaluation.  Lieutenant Mitshiba, you will be amongst the first to undergo this as the Admiral wishes you to be present when the science team gets their hands on the Temporal Drive."

"The *entire* crew is to be psychologically evaluated?" Counselor Lopez gasped, concerned that her own personal problems, namely those focussing on the visions of her sisters she could not stop having would be identified resulting in her being declared unfit for duty.

"There is nothing more I can say or do," Captain Iverson pointed out. "All of my objections and arguments were addressed and dismissed by Admiral Koniki. We have no other choice but to comply.  Dismissed."

---
Setting: NEW ALEXANDRIA, Section C-2, Level 1, Counseling Department
Stardate: 31235.0800

The night had been rough for the entire crew, and by the looks of it the morning had not been any easier, the expression on the face of her Chief Science Officer spoke volumes as to what she had just been through.

"Are you alright?" Selene inquired of Misaki, the Asian scientist appearing as if her mind had been turned inside out, something that Captain Iverson had not ruled out as having been an impossibility.

"I will be," Mitshiba replied, forcing herself to stand at attention in front of her Commanding Officer.  "If you will excuse me, I have to report to the Science Laboratories to help in the research on the Temporal Drive."

"Before you go, I have something for you," Selene said as she handed over a small blue velvet box to the Chief Science Officer of the BASTET.  "I wanted to acknowledge all that you have done for the BASTET and its crew, especially during our last mission. Your promotion is well deserved and I thought it might be a good way to offset what we will have to deal with in the coming weeks or even months."

"Thank you Captain," Misaki nodded as her Captain reached inside the small velvet box and retrieved a solid pip that she affixed on the collar of the woman, replacing the hollowed back pip that had been there before.

"You are very welcomed *Lieutenant*."

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 5
Stardate: 31235.0930

The Captain had been heading to the Counseling Department on board the BASTET when the woman she had been heading to see came out into the hallway.

"Good Morning Ensign Lopez, may I have a minute of your time?" The Iverson inquired.

"Of course Captain," Adriana promptly replied, "How can I help?"

"Things are rather quiet right now so I thought it best if I took the opportunity to look into personnel records for possible promotions," the Captain explained.

"You wish me to review the files of the candidates from a Counseling point of view to make sure you have not missed something?" the Counselor theorized.

"Actually there is only one file that I need to address," Selene further explained, "yours."

"Mine?"  Adriana felt her knees shake for a split second.

"Yes," the Captain confirmed as she handed over a blue velvet box.  "After having reviewed your service record and all that you have done for the crew, I believe that a promotion was due."

"Captain," Counselor Lopez began, trying to argue the honour that was being bestowed upon her, "I really cannot..."

"Nonsense," Selene dismissed as she reached into the box and retrieved the hollow pip that she placed next to the one already on the collar of the visibly uncomfortable woman.  "After what you have gone through on the KROGEN and now on the BASTET, the simple fact that you are still sane is worthy of this promotion."

As much as she had wanted to argue, both the promotion and the claim of her sanity, Adriana Lopez had been left with no other option but to accept.  "Thank you Captain."

"You are very welcomed Lieutenant Junior Grade Lopez."

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Captain's Ready Room
Stardate: 31265.0800

The last 30 days had come and gone without much happening. Captain Iverson had reported to the bridge each and every day waiting, hoping that something would happen to bring the BASTET back into active duty, but the entire base had been busy with a crisis of its own.  All of the ships had been recalled and were being upgraded for what would likely be a battle like no other; all save one -- the BASTET.

The sound of the door chime actually took the Captain by surprise, as far as she had been concerned the BASTET had been vacated of all personnel but a few essential people and the bridge had been empty when she had stepped through it on her way here.

"Yes?"

"Good morning Captain Iverson," Admiral Koniki offered, the imposing man appearing even more impressive in the more confined area of this room as compared to that of his office where he would usually be seen.  "I came because I need to explain something to you, something that is of the greatest importance to not only us but to the Federation and maybe even the entire galaxy."

"If you wanted to get my attention and interest, you have succeeded," the Captain said as she invited the higher ranking man to sit.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31285.0950

"I don't get it," Commander Valentine huffed, the woman clearly upset.  "Why are we not joining the task force to EARTH. The BASTET can hold its own in a fight and it sounds like they could use every ship available."

"The Admiral wants us to wait here for a few days, and I agree with his reasons," Captain Iverson stated from her chair as the main view screen shower the ANUBIS and the rest of the vessels taking part in the special task force to help EARTH fight the Neo-Essentialist leave the base one by one.

"The Admiral is keeping the BASTET as a potential 'ace in the hole'," Mitshiba noted. Although the Chief Science Officer had not been informed of the actual reasons for the ship and crew to remain behind, what she had noticed on her instruments had given her enough clues to come up with a solid theory.

"Ace in the hole?" Commander Janeel quired.

"Although the internal sensors do not show it, the power distribution of the BASTET shows something new having been brought on board. My guess is that this something new is not all that new and is in fact the Temporal Drive which had been somehow shielded from sensors," Mitshiba explained.

"Yup," Commander Valentine nodded with a smile, "that promotion was well deserved."

"Well done Lieutenant," the Captain acknowledged. "The Temporal Drive has been returned to the BASTET and has been fully integrated into our systems including the Dimensional Jump Drive.  Admiral Koniki wishes for us to remain on standby in case the conflict for EARTH does not go according to plan."

"One ship in the middle of the battle might not make a difference," Counselor Lopez offered, "but one ship able to go back in time and give the fleet some timely advice and tactics could easily shift the balance as well as change the final outcome."

"Our orders are to wait and act only if so ordered," the Captain clarified. "We are not to interfere with the timeline unless it is judge *absolutely* necessary."

"Our job is to make sure we don't lose *everything*," the Intelligence Liaison officer noted in a less than happy tone. "The conflict is to happen as it was meant to and we are to make ourselves known only if EARTH is lost."

Selene remained quiet. Her orders had been to have her ship and crew on standby and be ready to jump back in time to warn the task force should the battle be hopeless so that the ships and their crew could be saved.  EARTH and all of its inhabitants it seemed had been too much of a temporal variable to be considered in what would be a one ship rescue mission.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Captain's Ready Room
Stardate: 31288.0630

Captain Iverson sat at her desk, the report of the battle for EARTH showing on the PADD firmly held in her hands.  So many ships had been destroyed, so many lives lost and those had not counted the 28 million lost souls of Paris.

As great as the pain and sorrows had been though, the BASTET and her crew had not been sent into action.  Although it had been possible for their travel through time to save all of these people, the Admiral had also kept in mind that the temporal intervention could lead to even more casualties.

Since the Neo-Essentialists had been defeated and their leader Richard Edgerton killed, history would be allowed to remain as it had been shaped.  As imperfect as it might all have been Captain Iverson did her best to convince herself that this had been the right course of action.  The temporal Prime Directive had been put into place to avoid a few individuals from shaping the universe as they wished, and likely destroying it in the process.  As seen first hand with the J'Den and their efforts to reclaim their own world from the Masters, tampering with time could lead to very unfortunate circumstances.

All that the crew of the BASTET could do now as to wait and join the rest of the fleet as they mourned the brave people who had give their lives to see EARTH continue as it had been meant to be.

---
Jessica Solarik

Captain Selene Fiona Iverson [Access Character BIO for Selene Iverson]
Commanding Officer
USS BASTET

&

Lieutenant Commander Maya [Access Character BIO for Maya]
Chief Science Officer
USS ANUBIS

"To see the world in a grain of sand,
and a heaven in a wild flower.
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
and eternity in an hour."
- William Blake (British, 1757-1827)
M02-P099: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 30 - 1000 ("The Circle is Now Complete")
=-=
"The Circle is Now Complete"
[previous post was "Time for A Reset" by the amazing Jessica]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31228.1000 (Based on standard passage of time and not that of the current dimension)

The ship had returned to the present at a much more leisurely pace than it had been traveling through time not so long ago. Part of the reason had been to give the taxed system of the ship including the crew some reprieve, the other part having been that everyone felt a little unsure as to what they would be encountering once they got there.

Mitshiba had explained as best she could the conflicting timelines that the multiple temporal drives had created, but to the ILO / Mission Specialist it had all come across as being far more complicated than she could manage to understand.  All that Janeel knew was that the threat of the Masters had, at least for now, been dealt with and time had been restored to normal. What this actually meant no one knew for sure.

"The asteroid and the RAMAN are now entering sensor range," the CSciO reported from her station.  "At least where both should be," Misaki added knowing better than anyone else how what had happened in the post could have changed a great many things in he here and now.

"Everything appears to be as we left it," Commander Valentine confirmed as she studied the gathered sensor data.  "That's a good sign, right?"

"As long as the Masters don't reply to our hail once we get there," Counselor Lopez sighed with concern.

"Everything that we observed during our journey back seemed to indicate that the history we had been told about the J'Den and Masters unfolded without any major changes," Captain Iverson pointed out.  "Since we did not know any of the specific details there was nothing for us to compare with, but we did see the Masters leave JAA'DER a scorched world and the surviving J'Den take to the stars, therefore we should expect things to be as we left them, which is how we hope to see them."

"Long range sensors are picking up the asteroid as well as the wreckage of the RAMAN," Lieutenant Mitshiba reported with a clear hint of relief in her voice.  "Not picking up any signs of Masters technology or life signs."

"Things do appear to be as they should," the First Officer added, "in fact we are being hailed by the J'Den."

"On screen," the Captain ordered.

"SHUTAAR!" Adriana exclaimed in an overflowing outburst of joy as the features of the J'Den woman appeared on the main view screen.

[/\] Welcome back, [/\] the J'Den woman offered as if she had been aware of something beyond what would have been expected.  [/\] As soon as you are close enough, Lenaas and i would like your permission to come on board. We do have a great deal to talk about. [/\]

"Of course," the Captain acknowledged, not allowing her happiness in seeing Shutaar become outwardly known. "We will be in transporter range shortly. See you then."

As soon as the image of the J'Den vanished from the main view screen, Commander Valentine turned to look at their Captain. "A great deal to talk about?" Sarena mimicked with puzzlement and curiosity.

"I have the feeling that something more than what we might have expected happened during what we believe to be a simple restored timeline," the CSciO explained.  "Both Shutaar and Lenaas sacrificed themselves outside of the normal flow of time, so that they are here now is actually not a surprise and only confirms that the timeline has been for the most part restored, but this request to speak to us does raise certain interesting questions and possibilities."

"Guess we'll find out soon enough," Adriana said, openly showing her joy unlike the Captain and the rest of the senior officers.

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Observation Lounge
Stardate: 31228.1030 (Based on standard passage of time and not that of the current dimension)

"So we were gone for less than an hour?" Mitshiba queried of the two J'Den woman sitting at the table as the CSciO made a mental note to compare the BASTET and RAMAN computer chronometers, if that of the wrecked ship had been been operational.

"Yes, and the most interesting part is that I remember the attack of the Masters that forced you to leave," Lenaas added, a strange smile dancing on her lips.

"How is that possible?" the ILO / Mission Specialist demanded. "The timeline was restored to what it was before the Masters arrived from the future, or am I completely losing it?" Janeel added, her 'trying to understand temporal mechanics' triggered headache having returned once again.

"Please allow us to explain," Shutaar said as she looked at the other J'Den and offered a smile, a gesture that took everyone else present by complete surprise as the two women had clearly held a great deal of hostility towards one another before now.  "Although you have only been gone for an hour and the timeline appears very much as you remember it, Janeel had the time to explain to me certain details that I believe you need now to be aware of."

"I am sure that you will find this most interesting Misaki," Lenaas smiled before turning towards the ILO / Mission Specialist, "and I apologize for the headache that what I am about to explain is sure to cause you Miss Janeel. I survived the final attack against the Masters which destroyed both of their ships as well as the temporal drive that was present in the second vessel."

"You could not have survived and be here," Counselor Lopez pointed out. "The life span of your race is certainly not long enough to allow for that, unless you were somehow cryogenically kept for thousands of years."

"No," Lenass smiled. "I survived the crash although suffering from several injuries and was rescued by a group escaping our devastated world. I died years later but not before telling the tale of how I had arrived to this time period to a select few."

"Yup, there's that headache again," Janeel moaned ever so quietly.

"The genetic memories of your people," Mitshiba gasped with wide opened eyes. "You passed on the memories you had of that event."

"I did," the J'Den woman confirmed.  "The *accident* I believed had blocked my earliest memories had in fact been an implanted barrier set to insure that events would unfold as they had been meant to. The conflict between Shutaar and myself having been an integral point which needed to be protected.  The moment you left, the mental barrier dropped and I became once again aware of everything including my own role in this temporal mess."

"It is why my people have been, since the earliest days of our exile from our home world, interested in other dimensions, more specifically yours. We knew how important a role you would come to play in our survival.  You traveling to he past and allowing my future self to do what needed to be done will allow the J'Den to survive the invasion and ruling of the Masters."

"Now that's what I call time bending," the First Officer half chuckled.

"This is but one step in a sequence of events that have, are and will take place," Shutaar admitted having accepted both her role as well as that of who had once been her nemesis.

"Glad we were able to help," Captain Iverson offered not entirely sure how she would put all of this into her report to Admiral Koniki.

"I am sure that you are all anxious to return to your own dimension and time, but before you do so I would like t offer you this," Lenaas said as she pushed a Federation PADD across the table.

"What is it?" Commander Valentine asked, the PADD having stopped closest to her.

"Technical specification to the temporal drive," Lenaas replied. "These should help you work out some of the kinks in the finer functions of the drive.

"Thank you," Mitshiba acknowledged, reaching over for the PADD asking for the item with a grin worthy of a child at Christmas time.

"No," Shutaar said with a smile. "Thank you."

=-=
Setting: SPACE, near the GAMMA ERADI Cluster
Stardate: 31228.1500 (Based on standard passage of time and not that of the current dimension)

The USS BASTET emerged from the transdimensional vortex clear of the star cluster and the traps that had been set there by a yet to be determined force.  The ship help position there as all of the systems were checked and their temporal as well as spacial location was confirmed.

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31228.1500 (Based on standard passage of time and not that of the current dimension)

"All system are showing green," Commander Valentine reported. "We are home."

"Perfect," Captain Iverson nodded in distinct pleasure.  "Lieutenant Mitshiba, try and get a signal from any of the Federation's stations or listening posts and bring our own chronometers back in sync.  Helm, set a course for NEW ALEXANDRIA, it will be nice to return home and take a few days to process all that we have been through."

"Agreed," Counselor Lopez offered with a smile, the CNS expecting that there might be a few members of the crew who would be seeking her counsel to help make sense of the time loop that had all been such an important part of.

"Captain," Janeel began, "with your permission I would like to report to Sickbay. Hopefully they can give me something to offset this headache."

"You have nothing to worry Commander," the CSciO offered trying not to let her amusement show too much. "I am pretty sure that we will not be doing any more time jumps soon. There is still a great deal of data that was given to us that I need to review and implement."

"Take your time," the ILO / Mission Specialist, realizing only after the fact that she had mentioned the one word that instantly made her pain worse.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P098: USS BASTET: Iverson: Day 30 - 0200 ("Time For A Reset")
---
"Time For A Reset"
(Previous Post: "Twisted Timelines")
---

Setting: USS BASTET, Observation Lounge
Stardate: 31228.0200 (Based on standard passage of time and not that of the current dimension)

Lenaas had accepted to be beamed over to the BASTET, another indication that she had been more than willing to hear the time twisted tale of what had and would happen. Knowing that the meeting would likely be a long one, Captain Iverson had asked Lieutenant Mitshiba to bring the Temporal Drive back online and extend their shields to encompass the other ship. With both tachyons and anti-tachyons in perfect balance, the flow of time inside the shields, as it had before, placed the Federation and J'Den ships as well as everyone on board both ships in a sort of temporal hold, granting them the time to talk and plan.

Still, with the threat of the Masters using their own temporal drive to arrive here in order to destroy the BASTET and secure the new timeline they ruled unopposed, haste had been of the utmost importance.

"That is quite an imaginative tale," Lenaas said through a sigh of exasperation and disbelief, the last 2 hours having been filled with accounts of what the crew of the BASTET had done and encountered to bring them here.  "A tale that you expect me to believe despite not having any proof to present."

"Our knowledge and understanding of the situation should have been enough to convince you," Counselor Lopez pointed out. "Just as it convinced you to come here and listen to us."

"I will admit that I found your take on my relationship with Shutaar interesting," Lenass continued, "but having me believe everything that you have told me is an entirely different story."

"Captain," Janeel said as she stood from her chair. "I suggest we send her back to her ship and allow events to unfold as we have already seen them happen. Lenass should by now have ingested enough tachyon isotopes to allow her to be aware, granted maybe only on a subconscious level, but still able to recall the repetition of time.  After going through the destruction of her ship and death of her crew a few hundred times, I am sure that she will be more receptive to what we have to say."

"You poisoned me!?" The J'Den woman blasted as she bolted from her chair.

The rest of the senior officers remained perfectly silent, their eyes glued on the ILO.

"Tachyon isotopes are non-poisonous," Janeel calmly explained. "In fact if we had not told you about them you would never have known that you had ingested the compound and the effects would not have been apparent unless you were made to repeat the same moment in time again and again. Given that your ship is meant to be destroyed and its temporal drive to fall in the hands of the Masters' vessel which is hiding behind your planet, we would be the only ones able to rewind the clock," the ILO paused for a moment then turned to her Captain. "So my recommendation is that we beam Miss Lenaas back to her ship and have our temporal drive ready to take us back in time, say 2 minutes. That should be enough of an interval for her to experience the full impact of what she will be facing each time it happens without having the time to actually change the outcome."

"Alright, you win," Lenaas acknowledged as she defeatedly returned to her seat, her hands trembling at the thought of reliving what would be the last few moments of her ship and crew for as long as the people on board the BASTET wished it.  "What do you need me and my ship to do?"

"Give us a moment please," Captain Iverson said as she stood from the chair at the head of the large table and asked for everyone to follow he out of the Observation Lounge.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31228.0215 (Based on standard passage of time and not that of the current dimension)

"I am starting to see a pattern in those serving under me," Selene said as the door closed behind them, the woman obviously upset. "I appreciate and encourage people to come up with their own ideas, but I would greatly appreciate these ideas to be passed by me first before being implemented," the Captain scowled those standing before her.  "That said, Commander Janeel, I would like to inform you that you have been banned from any and all poker event this ship may have in the future.  That was quite the bluff you pulled back there."

"We were lucky that Lenaas' scientific knowledge was not greater than it is," Mitshiba pointed out. "There is no such thing as tachyon isotopes."

"Sorry," the ILO said as she took in a long deep breath. "We had to try something that was unexpected and over the top to make her actually reconsider her position. I had noticed that her disbelief had only been growing the more we each gave accounts of what we knew."

"Now that we have her on our side, what do we do next?" Commander Valentine questioned.

"We already know how the battle between the J'Den ship and that of the Masters ends," Iverson pointed out. "We need to make sure that it does not happen that way."

"Easier said than done," Misaki said, her eyes wide opened. "We saw just how easily the were able to overpower the J'Den ship and I doubt that our joining the battle would change the outcome.  The technology of the Masters, even before they gained control of the temporal drive, is rather impressive."

"Maybe we need to figure out a way to use that to our advantage," Commander Valentine offered. "We currently have *two* temporal drives here, surely there is a way for us to use them for offset the Masters' superior technology and firepower."

"We should all be involved in this discussion," Adriana said. "Lenaas has agreed to help and it would be only fair to her and her people to be included in what could change all of our lives."

"Agreed Counselor," the Captain said inviting everyone to return to the Observation Lounge.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Observation Lounge
Stardate: 31228.0225 (Based on standard passage of time and not that of the current dimension)

"Sorry about that," Captain Iverson said in all humility. "We just needed to check a few things first, namely what actual advantage we might have over the Masters, which in this case is our temporal drives."

"It is clear that you have a far better control of it than we do," Lenaas pointed out. "We are only able to travel backwards and by large segments only."

"Backwards only?" Misaki gasped. "But what about you returning home to your time?"

"It was a sacrifice that we were all willing to make if it restored our people and world," the J'Den woman sincerely explained.  "It was even suggested that we use it to destroy the Masters but the explosion was deemed too powerful and would risk destroying the world we came here to same."

"An imbalanced explosion would most certainly affect this entire region of space including the planet," the Chief Science Officer agreed.  "But what if we could actually create a *balanced* explosion."

"I see a headache coming on," Janeel whispered to herself.

"Please explain Lieutenant," Commander Valentine said, her curiosity having been piqued.

"The J'Den temporal drive, being basically the same as ours, should be able to be modified to create a balanced tachyon field like the one we are in right now," Misaki explained as she called up the device's specs on the holographic emitters of the conference table.  "The temporal bubble created by it enables whatever is inside to move *faster* then everything else outside, but what if we could reverse that effect and have whatever is *inside* the bubble move slower?  When we tested the drive, we actually experienced something like this so we know it is possible."

"We could set the J'Den ship on a collision course and have the modified temporal drive trigger allowing us to have as much time as we need to attack and destroy the Masters' vessel," Sarena offered, sounding rather pleased with the plan.

"We have no idea just how effective our weapons will be against the Masters' ship," Janeel added. "It would make more sense to have the modified temporal drive launched separately and allow for out of our ships to attack together."

"I would love to be able to get a few shots in on that ship," Lenass admitted.

"Than it is settled," Captain Iverson stated as she once again stood from her chair.  "Lieutenant Mitshiba, you and Lenaas are to return to the J'Den vessel and effect the necessary modifications to their temporal drive. We will keep the shields extended and the neutral temporal field active for as long as we can."

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31228.0310 (Based on standard passage of time and not that of the current dimension)

"Good timing Lieutenant," the Captain said as the Chief Science Officer returned to the bridge. "The shields were starting to fluctuate."

"I know," Misaki noted as she made her way to the science station. "Lenaas reported the fluctuations to me. The modifications were not completed but I am certain that they will have them done and the temporal drive ready in a few minutes."

"The plan stands as we discussed over the comm system," the First Officer said.  "The BASTET will engage the Masters, our shields being far more powerful than those of the J'Den. We will draw their fire and attention hopefully long enough for the temporal drive to be launched and make is way to the Masters' vessel. Once the temporal drive is triggered, the ship should be a sitting duck for us to attack."

"Let's hope so," Captain Iverson voiced, not ready to accept that this had already been a done deal. There had still been too many things that could go wrong.

---
Setting: Space
Stardate: 31228.0320 (Based on standard passage of time and not that of the current dimension)

The USS BASTET headed for the planet along the same trajectory that the J'Den ship had been set to use, matching the course and speed that had been observed when they had arrived to this time.

As expected the Masters ship engaged the moment it was in sight, but instead of an unsuspecting target with their shields down, the energy bolts fired hit a battle ready Federation ship, its shields having been restored to full prior to the encounter.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31228.0321 (Based on standard passage of time and not that of the current dimension)

"Shields down to 67%," Commander Valentine reported, that single attack having once again shown how powerful the Masters' weapons technology had been.

"Helm, evasive maneuvers. Get them to follow us and open their flank to the J'Den ship.  Tactical, fire all weapons, we need to keep their focus on us and if at all possible to weaken their shields," the Captain ordered as she held on to the arm rests of her chair.

The bridge as well as the whole ship rocked violently as another set of energy bolts impacted against the BASTET's shields.

"Shields down to 32%," the First Officer added. "Transferring all available power to reinforce the shields."

"J'Den temporal drive has been launched," the Chief Science Officer reported from her station. Now all that had been left to do was to hope that the plan would actually work.

Without a propulsion system of its own, the J'Den temporal drive had to be jettisoned from the ship, its momentum having originated from the sudden controlled decompression of the cargo bay in which the device had been moved to.

The targeting had been rough but to be effective the temporal drive had not been required to hit a specific part of the ship, in fact as long as it was triggered within the established range of the temporal field that would be generated, all should work as plan.

---
Setting: Space
Stardate: 31228.0322 (Based on standard passage of time and not that of the current dimension)

Tumbling through space, the temporal device appeared to be nothing more than a piece of junk, one that held the future of an entire race and more in the successful completion of its one and only task. The emitters had been boosted to their maximum capacity to increase the size of the field that would, in theory, be generated and bring the vessel of the Masters to a standstill.

Far slower than most would have wanted it to happen, the temporal drive rolled closer to its target as the energy bolts directed towards the USS BASTET continued to be fired and impact on the rapidly weakening shields of the Federation vessel.  Just as the aura of the shields vanished from around the ship acting as lure, the device was triggered and in a flash of light engulfed the Master's vessel.

Although the sensors would have likely taken a while to confirm the effectiveness of the plan, the fact that the energy bolts that would have impacted again the now defenseless BASTET hung motionless in space had been all that they needed. The Masters and their ship had been immobilized, for the time being.

That is when a second Masters ship appeared, this one giving clear indications that it had originated from the future.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31228.0324 (Based on standard passage of time and not that of the current dimension)

"Helm, get us out of the line of fire of those bolts and bring us about on a flanking attack vector to that first ship," the Captain ordered glad that they had avoided dealing with the last set of energy bolts and expecting that the defences of the new ship had been even greater than that of the first.

"Firing all weapons," Commander Valentine reported.

"Reading an energy build-up in the secondary power conduits," Lieutenant Mitshiba reported, "the last shot that took out our shields seems to have also ruptured the primary energy grid triggering an emergency rerouting. Channeling all that energy into the phasers is going to cause an overload."

"Set torpedoes on repeating firing sequence," Iverson said adapting their strategy according to what the Chief Science Officer had reported.  "Keep firing until we either run out of torpedoes or that ship is destroyed. Hopefully the explosion will take them both out."

"Captain, we have another problem," Counselor Lopez announced as she pointed to the main view screen. "Look!"

On the screen the members of the senior staff could see the energy bolts from the first ship moving once again, slowly but still indicating that the temporal field had begun to fail.

"Their shields are still holding," Janeel announced in a mixture of disbelief and anger, their efforts have fallen short of accomplishing what had been hoped. "With the second ship inside the field the power supply of the temporal drive is being rapidly drained, both ships are going to be back at full *speed* in less than a minute."

"The J'Den have noticed the same thing," Sarena reported.

"Are they looking for a way to avoid getting into the fight?" Captain Iverson asked, knowing that their ship had been no match for that of the Masters.

"Actually no," Commander Valentine said with surprise in her voice. "They are heading straight for the first ship. Looks like they are planning on ramming it."

Selene had been ready to open a comm channel and argue the course of action being taken, but the Captain quickly realized that this had been the one and only way to see this battle end in their favour. "Can we beam their crew off before it impacts?"

"Not without blowing ourselves up in the process," Mitshiba reported.  "The power grid is already looking like it could collapse at any moment.

"Captain, we need to distance ourselves from the explosion which will very likely take out both ships and us in the process," Janeel pointed out. "We have no shields."

"Helm, get us out of here. NOW!"

Using full impulse power the BASTET placed as much distance between it and the Masters ships which exploded one after the other soon after the J'Den vessel embedded itself into the flank of the first.  Despite the increased distance, the Federation vessel was still violently rocked by the powerful shockwave of the exploding vessels, tossing several members of the senior staff onto the floor.

"Report," Captain Iverson demanded as she looked around the bridge.

"No major structural damage but our sensors, transporters and communications have all been knocked out," Commander Valentine reported as she scanned the list of damage system appearing on her console.

"The power grid and energy supplies have also taken a massive hit," Lieutenant Mitshiba added.  "We need to get back to our time *now* or risk to be stuck here with no way to effect the needed repairs, at least not within our lifetime."

Selene had wanted to go back, to search for survivors, to make sure that the planet and its inhabitants had been alright, but all of this would have come at too high a price forcing the Captain to give the one order she wished she could have delayed for later, much later.  "Do what you need in order to get us back to our time."

---
Non-Mission Message:

With both the J'Den and Masters temporal drives destroyed, our *should* be the only left. Even if it is not, for the time being, this post officially brings us to the climax of our mission.  All that is left for us to do is to get back to our time and dimension and take a well earned rest, both in game and in real life. You people have done an amazing job with this mission, one that took one amazing turn after another.

I am open to getting ideas for our next mission as well as feedback on our last mission. What did you like, not like so much, how can we improve in the future?  Let me know, I am always only an email away.

Again bravo to you all for a superb and very successful mission.

---
Jessica Solarik

Captain Selene Fiona Iverson [Access Character BIO for Selene Iverson]
Commanding Officer
USS BASTET

&

Lieutenant Commander Maya [Access Character BIO for Maya]
Chief Science Officer
USS ANUBIS

"To see the world in a grain of sand,
and a heaven in a wild flower.
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
and eternity in an hour."
- William Blake (British, 1757-1827)
M02-P097: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 29 - 2355 ("Twisted Timelines")
"Twisted Timelines"
Previous post: "Not So Unexpected"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.2355 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

As the crew waited to see of Lenaas had been convinced by the words of Counselor Lopez, Aki wondered as to how all of this had come to be.  According to the most basic concepts of temporal mechanics, any changes made to the past would immediately affect the present, yet there were obvious disjunctions on what had, was and would come to pass.

The fact that Lenaas had failed to recognized both the BASTET and its crew had been the most troubling paradox, a single event that focussed the Chief Science Officer's thoughts like mad.  In what was considered to be the present for them, Lenaas had been encountered and had even privately spoken to Misaki.  The future Lenass they came across who warned them of the dangers of letting the temporal drive fall into the control of the Masters had also clearly known the members of the crew. 

It had therefore been expected that based on both of these encounters, the woman should have known of the BASTET, its crew and possibly the reason for their having travelled back in time to this point, thousands of years in the past.  Instead the woman appeared to be completely unaware of the Federation ship and its crew.

"You seem pensive," Commander Valentine whispered to the CSciO.

"Sorry," Aki offered as she snapped out of her time bending thoughts.  "It just doesn't make sense to me that lenass doesn't recognize us."

"At least she is considering our position thanks to Ensign Lopez's on point psychological analysis," the ExO pointed out, hope in her words.

"I am in no way debating this, my only concern is the state of the timeline.  Something has changed," Aki explained with concern, unable to fully embrace the hopes of the First Officer.  "It is like finding a loose thread on a tapestry, if you pull at it the entire thing could unravel."

"Are you saying that we should not proceed as plan?" Commander Valentine demanded with a sense of urgency, wondering if they needed to inform the Captain right away.

"To be perfectly honest I have no idea what this discrepancy means," Mitshiba admitted. "It could be nothing, it could be some sort of overlapping timeline in which we never met the J'Den. The simple fact that there is only one temporal drive which is being used by three different races all at the same time leaves me to believe that the normal temporal rules, if such things exists, do not apply. It is as if past, present and future are colliding in a random fashion."

"I will be the first to admit that I know very little about time travel and the rules of such an endeavor," Janeel pointed out as she joined the conversation, "but I do understand enough about words to know that what you are saying is not on the good side of things."

"Something about the temporal drive extends beyond what the scientific community would consider to be normal space-time," Aki stated with nervous certainty.  "Maybe it is the drive itself that operates in a way that we have yet to understand, or maybe it is the fact that we have attached it to our own dimensional jump drive that has twisted time onto itself.  The problem is that I have no way to check and wouldn't even know where to start if we could."

"Then it sounds like we continue as we planned," the Captain joined in.  "Maybe we need to remove the other temporal devices from play one at a time until we are left with only one."

"What if that was exactly what the Masters have been trying to do?" Adriana said, also joining in on the debate that Aki had inadvertently started.  "What if they went back to when the BASTET first encountered the J'Den and stopped that meeting? It would account for Lenaas not recognising us and would also lead us to not being in possession of a temporal drive."

"My headache is coming back," Janeel sighed.

"If this is the case," Aki nodded. "We are dealing with multiple timelines, each one trying to assert itself over the others through the efforts of each race involved. The J'Den likely did not realize that they were helping in the creating of this twisted timeline when they returned to the past at a point where the Masters had also returned once they had in their possession a temporal drive.  We could very well be dealing with shattered time which, according to most theories will lead to one of two things to happen."

"One of two," the ILO said with a smile. "I like those simple numbers. Fewer options are easier to deal with."

"The first; the forces of nature will oppose the chaos and try to see a timeline become the only timeline," Aki explained.

"Back to the living time theory," Commander Valentine grinned.

"The second; time itself will lose cohesion leading to the past, present and future to exist in the same space-time, this will only last for a split second as the fabric of the universe, unable to sustain such strain, will be torn to shreds taking everything with it," the CSciO continued, pausing for a moment to make sure everyone understood.  "It will be the end of this dimension and likely any and all others with any sort of link to it.  Reality as we know it will simple cease to exist."

"Alright, option number two is not the one we need to be looking at," Janeel gasped.

"The Commander is right," Captain Iverson agreed. "We need to focus our efforts on the one option that at the very least gives us a fighting chance."

"The J'Den are hailing us," Commander Valentine reported, sending everyone back to their stations.

With a nod of her head the Captain gave to okay to have the transmission come through on the main view screen.

[/\] I still do not believe your claims, [/\] Lenaas stated, the expression on her face indicating that her confidence and conviction had not been entirely there. [/\] That said, I am willing to listen. [/\]

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M02-P096: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 29 - 2345 ("Not So Unexpected")
-=-=-
"Not So Unexpected"
[Previous post: "When It All Started"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.2345 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

Adriana had not wanted to come across as sarcastic, all that she had wanted to do was to voice the nearly impossible task that they all faced.  Granted her tone might have reflected the skepticism she felt, but it had never been meant to be that way.  Then again dealing with the constant nagging of her twin sister had not made things any easier.

"Come on sis," Amanda said, the illusion of the twin sister standing right next to the Counselor who as always did her best to ignore the intrusion. "You need to keep a more positive attitude; we are talking about the fate of the universe hinging on the outcome of the next few minutes."

the CNS had been ready to snap back at her sister, the pressure of the situation having been bad enough without having her make matters worse, but Adriana help back reminding herself that her sister had not actually been there.

"We are back into normal space," the CSciO reported.

"Hailing frequencies open," the First Officer added soon after.

"This is Captain Iverson of the USS BASTET, a Federation vessel which has travelled back in time to warn you of the consequences of what you are about to attempt."

Everyone waited to see if someone would reply but as the seconds passed in absolute silence it became clear that no one would be answering.

"The ship did stop," Commander Valentine stated. "They are not proceeding to the planet as they had before."

"Without the means to see the *present* or even beyond the current time we are in, there is no way for us to gage the impact we are having on the timeline," Misaki said. "We could actually be making things worse."

"Somehow I doubt that we can make the end of the J'Den worse," Amanda sighed to her sister causing Adriana to roll her eyes

"They have resumed their course towards the planet," Sarena reported in somewhat of a panic, their first attempt to stopping events from unfolding as they had seen them having apparently failed.

"This is Captain Iverson of the BASTET, we were sent back by Lenaas to warn you that your efforts to regain your world will fail and lead the Masters to taking control of the temporal drive you have on board, the same one that we used to get here," the Captain tried again, allowing some level or urgency to lace her words.  "Your mission fails and dooms your entire race."

"The ship has stopped again," Sarena reported with a sigh of relief. "Looks like they are at the very least willing to listen. We are being hailed."

"On screen," Selene ordered, standing from her chair even before the image changed.

[/\] Let's say that I believe you, which for the time being I do not, what proof do you have to offer to justify your claim? [/\] Lenaas said as her face appeared on the main view screen.

"This ought to be interesting," Amanda, the illusionary twin sister of the Counselor sarcastically noted. "The woman who sent us here in the first place is now the one asking us to prove that she was the one who sent us.  Hate to be in her head when the Captain tries to explain this."

"Captain, if I may?" Adriana asked as she stepped up to which the Captain invited the Counselor to take center stage.  "We *have* met. You were the one who came to us claiming that you had attempted to reclaim your homeworld several times and that on the last attempt the temporal drive had fallen into the control of the Masters."

[/\] We have never met. I do not recognize you or your ship. [/\] Lenaas stated with anger above certainty.

"In this revised timeline it is very possible that we never encountered Lenass, in fact it is possible that we never even made it into their dimension," Mitshiba explained.

"Alright, let me try this. Shutaar does not like you because your genetic memories are not as complete as those of your sisters leaving you to not fully embrace their ideas, namely the one about reclaiming the J'Den homeworld," Adriana said, her hands trembling in fear of saying something wrong.  "My guess as to why you are now here doing this is that Shutaar died and you became the new leader of the J'Den, filled with grief and guilt you decided to take on the quest that she had started with the building of the temporal device.  You don't believe that this is what your people want or need, and it is why you eventually find a way to contact us to get us to help save your people.  Your hate of Shutaar transformed into guilt which drove you to doing what she had always dreamt and which was the one thing you never wanted."

"Nicely done sis, hit her where it hurts."

"I suspect that this growing guilt is what drove you to trying to reclaim your homeworld time and time again after each failed attempt," Adriana added, her tone bordering on anger.  "You ended up being the cause of what you had wanted to prevent from the very start."

Suddenly the screen went dark and the surrounding stars returned on the main view screen.

"I'm sorry Captain," the CNS offered. "I thought that a more direct approach, one that fit her psychological profile would work."

"It may not have failed," Commander Valentine pointed out. "The ship still has not moved."

"Guess we wait," the Captain said as she returned to her chair.  "Hopefully not too long, I would hate to have to deal with the Masters from the future here.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P095: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 29 - 2135 ("When It All Started")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"When It All Started"
[previous post (Bad Timing)]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.2135 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

The bridge was silent, each and every member of the command staff processing what had happened in their own way. The BASTET had managed to escape the clutches of the Masters but this had come at a price, the willful and selfless sacrifice of Shutaar, a woman who in her last act had proven herself to be a true leader of the J'Den.

"Where are we heading?" Janeel quietly asked. "I mean *when*?" She quickly corrected, the nuances of traveling through time instead of space still proving to be a challenge for her to sort out.

"We were in such a rush to get out of that mess that I just threw us backwards without setting a specific temporal target," Mitshiba answered, feeling bad for what she had done above and beyond the feeling she experienced in regard to the death of Shutaar, a woman who had wanted nothing more than to see her people survive and prosper.

"You did well Lieutenant," Captain Iverson reassured.  "In fact I believe that we are heading in the right direction."

"We are?" Sarena queried, curious as to what plan the Captain had come up with which required them to be heading back through time.

"Lieutenant Mitshiba pointed out that we faced a temporal paradox back there because the events of the past caught up with us in the future," Selene explained, her gaze lost in the temporal haze being displayed on the main view screen.  "What we need to do is to go back when it all started, when the J'Den lost the device to the Masters.  If we can stop that we should in theory be able to start restoring the timeline."

"The theories on paradox and time travel are numerous," Misaki pointed out, "and I will not claim to know them all, but there is solid support for the idea of fixed points in time from which entire timelines can be created or even destroyed. Lenaas did say that they had returned to the past multiple times to try and regain their world and that it was on their last attempt they lost the temporal drive to the Masters. These multiple journeys could have created a temporal pivotal point."

"That is what I am actually counting on," the Captain agreed.  "I am not sure what kind of mess we are going to land in the middle of, but our primal objective is clear. We need to stop the J'Den from losing the temporal device to the Masters."

"You make it sound so easy," Valentine chuckled dryly.  "Guess we'd better make sure we get there first. Lieutenant Mitshiba, push the temporal drive to its maximum, whatever that may be."

The Chief Science Officer actually appeared nervous as she increased the imbalance between the tachyons and anti-tachyons, forcing the ship to travel even faster backwards through time.

"The J'Den said that they had been slaves for the Masters for over two thousand years," Misaki said as he tried to come up with some sort of temporal target for their to aim for.  "Without a specific date, the best we can do if aim slightly short of what should be the target and reduce speed. We can then use visual queues to determine if we are in the right time period."

"We will need to travel in physical space as well," Janeel pointed out. "We are nowhere near the J'Den's homeworld, and so far we have not figured out how to do both."

"If the Masters are able to track us, returning to normal space will leave us vulnerable," the Executive Officer added.

"Lieutenant Mitshiba," Captain Iverson began as she turned to look at the Chief Science Officer.  "How taxing on the system would it be if we dropped out of temporal shift and engaged the warp drive for a few minutes before re-engaging the temporal drive?"

"I would love to give you an answer Captain," Mitshiba replied, "but since we have never done anything like this before there is no way to know for sure. The best we can do is to keep a close watch on everything and adapt as needed."

"As much of a risk as returning to normal space will be," the Executive Officer added, "waiting to the very last moment to do so will mean that the Masters will have an easier time to find us and see us coming."

"Then it is settled," the Captain continued having made her decision. "Lieutenant Mitshiba, begin working on calculations to see the BASTET be in the vicinity of the J'Den homeworld at the appropriate time. Try to keep our time in normal space as brief as possible without causing too much of a delay."

"You would think that traveling through time would mean that we have *more* of it to work with, not *less*," Counselor Lopez sighed, the command crew having been on edge and rushed through everything since they had activated the temporal drive.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.2155 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

The calculations had been made and the ship bounced between normal space and temporal shift several times now without any incidents.  The BASTET had still been several hours away to reach the J'Den homeworld, and the temporal drive had been set to match this which meant that in theory the ship and crew would arrive when and where they needed to be.

"Stand-by to jump back into temporal shift," Mitshiba announced, "in 3... 2... 1... now, engaging temporal drive."

The imagine on the main view screen changed once again, the time distortion making things look as if they all had been in the same shared dream.

"Structural integrity still holding," the Executive Officer reported. "Looks like we have this down pat. Also by keeping our time in normal space short and at scattered intervals, it should make it very difficult for the Masters to track us, if they are even capable of doing so."

"We need to keep the odds in our favor as much as possible," the ILO noted with hesitation.  "I doubt that we are going to get another chance at this if we fail."

"Agreed," Captain Iverson confirmed from the central chair. "The problem is that we are dealing with far too many unknowns and the one person who could have helped us is no longer with us."

"We made it this far because of her sacrifice," the CNS offered thinking that their Captain had felt some level of guilt for Shutaar's fate.

"I am well aware of that Counselor," the Captain said in a manner that made it clear that she had not felt any sadness or guilt. The woman having only pointed out loud the obvious tactical disadvantage they faced.  "Everyone get some rest, we are going to need to be sharp when we arrive after our final temporal jump."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.2340 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

The senior staff had returned from their short rest period following the Captain's summon, the BASTET had been ready to return to normal space.  On the main view screen the officers could see a distant planet, one that seemed busy with orbital traffic.

"Is this JAA'DER?" the Counselor asked as she stepped onto the bridge.

"Yes it is," Misaki replied, "bet Shutaar would have loved to see this."

"Maybe not so much," Janeel countered with. "The orbital traffic appears to be Masters.

"Lieutenant Mitshiba, slow us down," the Captain ordered. "We need to see what is happening to know when we need to jump out of temporal shift."

It had been strange to watch events unfold backwards, seeing ships withdraw from warp speed and take up a normal orbit, everything in reverse.

"There," the Executive Officer announced as she pointed to a corner of the view screen. "A battle between two ships just ended, and by the looks of things it was a nasty fight," Sarena added as the battle stretched out for several time distorted seconds. "This is where the battle started, looks like the Masters' ship ambushed the other as they came around the planet as if they knew they were coming."

"The ship design does appear to be J'Den in origin," the CSciO confirmed as the ship moved backwards away from the battle that it would lose the moment time would be made to move forward once again.

"We need to intercept that ship before it gets into that fight," the Captain explained.

"And convince whoever is on board that they are not only going to lose the battle but also their temporal drive which will lead to the end of their race," Counselor Lopez added. "Completely doable, we'll have them convinced in no time," Adriana added, her sarcasm not having been as appreciated as she might have hoped.

"Lieutenant Mishiba, bring us back to normal space as soon as the J'Den ship appears and open hailing frequencies," the Captain ordered. "We're going to only have one chance at this."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M02-P094: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 29 - 2100 ("Bad Timing")
=-=
"Bad Timing"
[previous post was "Time Slipping By" by the imaginative Marissa]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.2100 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

With the sensors unable to make heads or tails of what happening beyond the shields, the command staff of the BASTET had little else to do than to watch the show being displayed on the main view screen, and what a show it was.  Janeel had never considered herself to be scientifically minded, her troubles understanding the basics of temporal mechanics having been proof of that, but still she could not help but find the rapidly moving scene being displayed on the main view screen mesmerizing.

"If you actually look closely you can see some minor changes in the far away nebulas," the Counselor pointed out in admiration. She had been about to try and get Mitshiba's attention when she realized just busy the woman had been busy trying to bring the modifications to the sensors online.

"Still trying to compensate for the temporal distortion," the Chief Science Officer stated sounding a little frustrated.  "It's like trying to look at the riverbed through turbulent fast moving water, the sensors beams are just getting bounced all over the place in not predictable manner."

"What if you extend that analogy into reality?" Janeel offered, although science might not have been her strong point, the description given by Lieutenant Mitshiba had made the problem very easy to understand.  "What would you do in order to see the riverbed through the water's distortion."

"Scanning through water is easy," Misaki brushed off, "the instruments can account for fluidic distortion."

"What if you were trying to do so without high-end instruments? Say an old style tricorder?" the ILO / Mission Specialist continued, obviously having an idea in mind.

"Then you create some sort of physical barrier to block or at the very least reduce the wave distortion to allow for the scan beam to get a cleaner access to the target," Mitshiba answered before she froze in her work.  "The temporal distortion we are dealing with is likely caused by the tachyon field resonating off our shields. It would explain the visual distortion but that was easy to correct, the sensors are another story unless I can find a way to reduce the impact of the temporal shifts on our shields, namely along our sensors."

"Captain," Commander Valentine grinned, "I believe that we may have sensors back very shortly."

"GOT 'EM!" Misaki let out with excitement, the idea suggested by Janeel having pointed the CSciO in the right direction to get their sensor problems fixed.  "Sensors may not be working at 100% but they will be able to provide us with enough data to allow us to know when we are and extrapolate our traveling speed."

"Well done Lieutenant," the Captain offered, Iverson always happy to receive good news in any situation.

"According to these readings, we are moving forward through time at an approximate rate of one week every 3 seconds, and given how much time as elapsed since the start of this temporal journey, we should be reaching our destination in just under 7 minutes," Misaki reported looking up at the view screen for the first time.  "Wow, that's amazing."

"I believe amazing does not do all of this justice," Counselor Lopez nodded.

"Alright, we need to get our heads back in the game," the Captain stated as she turned to look at Shutaar.  "We will need to convince whoever is in charge *not* to use the temporal drive, as that is what leads to the end of your people and the start of the Masters' domination over this dimension."

"I suspect that you already know who this person will be," Shutaar snarled." You all have gone to great length to avoid speaking their name, and I can only imagine that this is because you fear that this knowledge may hinder my willingness to help you. So allow me to make this simple for you; either you tell me who gave you this information or I use whatever means at my disposal to insure that the device is used."

"That would mean the death of all your people," Adriana pointed out in shock at the woman's stubbornness.

"Please understand this," Shutaar said in a clearly threatening manner. "I have no proof of what you have claimed, for all that I know it is you and stopping us from using the temporal device that dooms my people.  You have offered me no proof or even a name. You ask for my trust and yet are unwilling to show me the same by revealing who provided you with the information that has led us here to the future to change my people's past."

"It was Lenaas," the ILO / Mission Specialist said.  "You are right, we feared that knowing who provided us with the information would insure that you would not help us.  The friction between the two of you has been impossible to miss, and even though we have no idea as to why there is such a conflict between the two of you, we could not take the chance to see this mission fail. Aside from the continued survival of your people, we are here trying to insure everyone else's. With transdimensional capabilities and a temporal device at their disposal, the Masters would rapidly become an unstoppable force in the multiverse."

Rage flashed over the horned woman's face, but to everyone's relief the anger gradually vanished.  "Leenas and i do not agree on a lot of points and I suspect that she does want to replace me as the leading voice, but I doubt that she would put her own ambitions ahead of the needs of our people."

Although the anger had vanished from Shutaar's features, the same could not be said for the expression on Captain Iverson's face, the woman appearing less than pleased by Janeel's decision to reveal that information, be it the right thing to do or not.

"We will be reaching our temporal destination is less than a minute," Misaki announced interrupting everyone's thoughts. Whatever consequences would come to pass from what had been revealed would have to wait after the BASTET returned to normal space-time.

=-=
Setting: Space
Stardate: 31227.2110 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

The emptiness of space where the BASTET had been 5 years ago began to show signs of distortion. At first the area appeared very small but it rapidly grew to match the size of the ship's shield bubble, and after a few seconds the vessel itself appeared.

Traveling through time as they had, there had been no way for anyone on board the BASTET to know what they would encounter, but the fact that half a dozen Masters vessels had been in close proximity hinted that they suspected or maybe even knew where and when the ship would reappear.

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.2110 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

"We are surrounded!" Valentine stated as she looked at the tactical display at hr station.

"How did they know where and when to find us?" Janeel gasped, certain that there would be no way for them to get out of this situation.

"Temporal paradox," Mitshiba theorized. "We were trying to reach a future that was being rewritten by the Masters the moment they appeared in what was our present.  We thought that we might have the time to come here and fix things before they happened, but obviously we failed in that regards."

[/\] Surrender the device and the J'Den named Shutaar, [/\] the gray skinned Master bellowed as his face filled the main view screen.

"They don't give up," the ILO / Mission Specialist sighed in a whispered voice as she glanced to the J'Den woman.

"I will surrender myself to you if you leave these people in peace," Shutaar stated, trying to negotiate some sort of agreement with he leader of the Masters.

[/\] Surrender yourself and the device or be destroyed, [/\] the menacing man reiterated, diplomacy not having been his way of dealing with this or any other situation.

"The device will need to be removed from their systems, give us an hour of their time and will transport over with it," the J'Den offered not even taking the time to see if this was a course of action that the Captain supported.

[/\] You have 10 of your minutes, [/\] came the growled reply before the image vanished from the main view screen.

Turning to face the Captain and the rest of the command staff present on the Bridge, Shutaar spoke quickly.  "There is little time to discuss this or even argue, the Masters do not have transport technology as you do, or at least they had no such technology the last time I encountered them. So they will be expecting a shuttle to be heading their way in less than 10 of your minutes.  I will need whatever explosives you can place on board there and ready to be detonated at will, hopefully this will provide you with the distraction you need to escape this time and space.  All I ask in return is that you save my people."

"You cannot be suggesting that I think you are," the Ship's Counselor argued back.

"The Masters will be scanning your shuttle for a single life form, mine, and anything that resembles a temporal device. I hope that you can make whatever explosives appear as such in the time we have left," Shutaar explained without concern or hesitation.  "I appreciate your desire to save me, but this is the best course of action given the time we have available."

Captain Iverson gave her officers a quick look before returning her gaze onto the J'Den woman. "Commander Valentine, have the armory transfer 4 Quantum torpedoes to one of the shuttles, make sure that the are set to be triggered manually. Lieutenant Mitshiba, those torpedoes are going to need to be covered in tachyon particles while out own temporal drive becomes invisible to their sensors.  Lieutenant Commander Janeel, please escort Shutaar to the shuttle bay and provide her with anything else she might need. Let's go people, we have lots to do and about 8 minutes to do it."

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Shuttle bay
Stardate: 31227.2120 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

The journey to the shuttle bay had been silent, Janeel uncertain as to what to say to the J'Den who had so easily decided to sacrifice herself for the crew of the BASTET and the hope of them finding a way to save her people.

"If I may be honest, I am impressed by what you have decided to do," Janeel offered as they boarded the shuttle.

"I am doing what I have always done," the J'Den explained. "For as long as I can remember my goal as been to insure the safety and continued prosperity of my people, this is no different. My only wish is to see you escape and find a way to save my people."

The ILO / Mission Specialist had been ready to say something, hopefully inspirational but instead she was sidelined by one of the Engineering techs.  "Torpedoes are set and armed, the manual trigger switch was set on the flight console.  The shells of the torpedoes have been saturated with tachyon particles which should make them glow as bright as a sun to the Masters sensors."

"Thank you," Shutaar nodded.

=/\= Bridge to shuttle 1. You have 1 minute to get going. =/\=

"It is time for you to go and for me to do what needs to be done," the J'Den said in an understandably saddened tone.  "My greatest regret is the lost of my memories, but if my people can be saved, it will be a small sacrifice to make."

=/\= Bridge to Shuttle 1, you have 30 seconds. =/\=

"Good luck," Janeel said as she quickly dashed out of the shuttle and continued until she exited the shuttle bay.

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.2125 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

Janeel had returned to the bridge as fast as she could, Shutaar having deserved to have her sacrifice be witnessed by all who could.

"She will reach optimal range in 20 seconds," Mitshiba announced.  "The explosion should partially disable 3 of their 6 ships."

"Shields at the ready," the Captain ordered.  "Be ready to engage the temporal drive as soon as we can.  We may not be able to outrun the Masters' ships but let's hope that we can beat them through time."

"Optimal range in 10 seconds," the CSciO reported.  "Temporal drive is ready."

"Shields also ready," Valentine added, the entire crew waiting for that split second when all would be decided.

"5... 4... 3... 2... 1..."

"Farewell," Janeel whispered in acknowledgement of the woman's courage and sacrifice.

=-=
Setting: Space
Stardate: 31227.2126 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

The small craft vanished in a blinding flash of light, the shockwave of the exploding easily knocking the two Masters ships that had been right next to the shuttle when it exploded.  The wave expanded through space and collided with the third ship almost at the same time as the energy of the blast impacted against the restored shields of the BASTET.

Chaos ruled that part of space for several seconds and the Masters tried to understand what had happened and how to respond, but by the time they had gathered their thoughts, the temporal distortion that surrounded the Federation vessel had been no larger than a fist, the ship having vanished once again through time.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P093: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 29 - 2055 ("Time Slipping By")
"Time Slipping By"
Previous post: "Time To Move"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.2055 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

The image on the main view screen had become heavily distorted which only added to the eerie feeling that had taken over the bridge thanks to the lights not working at full intensity.  It was beyond a doubt that something was happening but there had been no way for any of them to know what exactly, the data gathered by the sensors making no sense whatsoever.

"You know, this reminds me of a nightmare I once had," Counselor Lopez gulped, voicing what everyone had been feeling.

"Let me try something." Aki said as she called up various field telemetry on the forced tachyon imbalance now surrounding the BASTET.  "Trying to adjust both sensors and visual receptors to the tachyon imbalance, hopefully this will allow us to have an idea of what is happening out there."

"That would be greatly appreciated Lieutenant," the Captain said to everyone's silent agreement.

"I think I have it," the Chief Science Officer said with hesitation after a few moments as she slowly looked up from her station, not sure if she had succeeded in her efforts.  What she and the rest of the bridge crew saw next left them all stunned and silent as they witnessed multiple ships passing by at an accelerated rate.

"What are we looking at?" The First Officer asked as she came to stand next to the CSciO who had not been sure what to answer.

"The data from the sensors is still not making any sense," Aki explained. "The modifications I made seem to have only worked on the external visual display. It may take a while to figure out how to adapt the sensors to whatever temporal distortion we are dealing with."

"It appears as if we are looking at a section of space stuck on fast-forward," the Captain pointed out.

"That might exactly be it," Mitshiba agreed while she continued to get sensors back onlne. "We expected to reach our temporal destination is the blink of an eye, but what if the temporal device doesn't work that way? What if it only allows us to slip through time, either forward or backwards? Instead of creating a temporal wormhole between two points in time it could have simply forced us into a localized phenomenon that is outside of the normally perceived flow of time," Aki theorized, her instruments unable to confirm what she had offered as a possible explanation.

"So what we are likely looking at are the Masters frantically searching for us," Janeel added, glancing at the nervous looking Shutaar who remained completely silent.

"Would make sense," Commander Valentine nodded. "As far as they are concerned we just vanished from their instruments and they are probably hoping that we have some sort of cloaking device that we decided to use instead of a working temporal device."

"We still have a problem though," the Captain voiced with a sigh.

"At this rate, it will take us years to reach our targeted temporal destination," the First Officer added in agreement. "The bright side of things is that we will be able to pretty much arrive exactly when we want or need to."

"The controls to the temporal device are still being fined tuned," Aki pointed out as she ran a diagnostic on the entire time traveling system.  "We were afraid that we would be sent hundred, maybe even thousands of years out, so we made sure that the setting were as precise as possible.  Looks like they ended up being too much so."

"I would not say that this is a failure," the Captain said in a reassuring tone.  "Being able to travel through time with such control may very well prove to be useful at a later time, but right now we need to *speed* things up."

"Already working on changing the settings to a lower variable controls," the CSciO reported.  For once things had gone far better than they could have expected, the controls having been set at the highest possible sensitivity for the temporal device just in case, hoping to give them the ability to more accurately target their destination. Apparently instead of aiming for years, the controls had been set to be more towards days.  "This should do it," Aki announced as she shifted the controls to their new settings which instantly caused the main view screen to display images so fast that only events happening on a monthly time frame could now be seen.

"Wow," the First Officer gasped in admiration.  "Imagine looking at solar system or even a planet like this, months and years going by in just a few seconds.  I'd be afraid to blink for fear of missing something."

"I agree, the scientific advantages are immeasurable, but it would be nice to have sensors operational to be able to have more than a visual record of what we are seeing," the Captain added in all seriousness.

"Sorry Captain," Mitshiba apologised, quickly returning her attention to her instruments.  "Working on them now," she stated wishing that she could look up and see the amazing and likely breathtaking show, but in consolation the CSciO knew that once the system would be better tuned she would be able to study the universe in a way that most could only dream of.

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M02-P092: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 29 - 2030 ("Time to Move")
=-=
"Time to Move"
[previous post was "Restoring Hope" by the encouraging Marissa]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.2030 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

Thanks to the assistance of Shutaar, the understanding of the workings of the temporal device had jumped leaps and bounds. A whole new set of simulations had been tested and the Captain had been confident that they would soon be able to attempt an actual *time jump*.

"That should do it," Shutaar confirmed the latest modification made by Lieutenant Mitshiba, the senior officers having been working from the bridge to finalize the integration of the temporal drive into the ship's systems.

"I am still a little weary about the Tachyon controls," Misaki stated with obvious reservations as to the entire process.  "According to the simulations based on every calculations we made, the controls should a lot more sensitive.  I feel like we are going to be trying to fly the BASTET inside SPACEDOCK while using impulse engines."

"A agree that the system does appear to be clumsy in its controls," the First Officer confirmed, "but we have to keep in mind that we are dealing in time and not space.  Arriving at a destination 30 seconds before or after will not make as much a difference as being 30 meters off a specified heading."

"We are not talking about seconds, but possible days, weeks, months or even years," the Chief Science Officer forcefully corrected

"Please forgive my temporal ignorance here," Janeel cut in with, "but to me even 30 seconds sounds like a lot. A great many things can happen in those few seconds and we could possibly find ourselves in the middle of an explosion instead of arriving a few seconds before it is triggered." The ILO / Mission Specialist did her best to voice her concerns without coming across as paranoid or flat out insubordinate.  "With all due respects, I think we need to listen to Lieutenant Mitshiba and not attempt anything before we can be more accurate as to our ability to land into set temporal targeting."

"As much as I agree with Commander Janeel, for obvious reasons, we may have another problem to take into consideration," the Chief Science Officer added.  "The Tachyon balance has begun to fluctuate. The device may not be able to keep temporal neutrality indefinitely, there might be some unknown rule of temporal physics here at play which will force us to either return to normal space-time or actually move through time."

"Of course," Counselor Lopez sighed, "why would it have been easy."

"Time has been most patient with us," Captain Iverson said, having heard her First Officer's theory about time having possibly been some sort of living entity.  "Are we able to make a control test? I man can we travel in time, say to some safe period to test the device and our controls of it?"

"We should be able to," Mitshiba confirmed.  "Without a specific time target though it will be difficult to gage the accuracy of our controls over the device."

"The added problem is that we were unfortunately not informed as to *when* the temporal device was going to be completed and used by the J'Den," the ILO / Mission Specialist added. "We are flying through time blind."

"Shutaar, we could use an idea, even if it would be a best guess scenario as to when the device had been expected to be operational based on your work and progress," the Captain said as she turned to face the J'Den woman who appeared just as lost as everyone else.

"Captain, if I may?" Janeel inquired seeking permission to ask Shutaar a question hat would likely sound odd to everyone.  The nod of Selene's head was all that the ILO / Mission Specialist needed to have her turn again to face the horned woman.  "Can you confirm the average life span of a female member of your race as well as your own age?"

"The average lifespan for a female of my race is around 60 years by your calculations," Shutaar replied although hesitantly, clearly unsure as to why the question had been asked in the first place.  "I am 52.  Why are you asking such a question?"

"Captain," the ILO / Mission Specialist began as she turned back to look at their Commanding Officer, "the source of the information that we were given would point to the device having, please forgive me Shutaar, activated either at your death or very shortly after.  I realise that this is far from being an accurate target but it does give us a general time period to work with."

"Where did you get this information that you all keep talking about? Shutaar demanded, frustration evident in her voice.  "You all seem to be going out of your way to not tell me how you came to receive that information, but I think that after everything that I have done to help I deserve to know."

Silence feel over the bridge, no one willing or ready to say anything.  Captain Iverson had readied herself to being the one to reveal the source of the information and had even stood from her chair when the BASTET was violently shaken.  "Report."

"The tachyon field is destabilizing faster than we had anticipated," Misaki stated after having scanned her station's readouts.  "We will be forced back into normal time in less than 20 seconds, maybe even less."

"Stations!" the Captain ordered. "Set temporal target to 5 years ahead and engage as soon as we can."

"Temporal coordinates set," Commander Valentine reported a few seconds later.

"Complete field destabilization in 14 seconds," Mitshiba added, the vibration through the whole of the BASTET having only increased with each passing second.

"We are returning to normal time, look!" Adriana said as she pointed to the main view screen where the energy bolt that had been fired from the Masters' ship began to move, although be it extremely slowly, but fast enough for the motion to be seen by the naked eye.

"It won't take the Masters long to figure out where we are and retarget their weapons, and our shields are still too weak to take another shot," Sarena announced making sure that the Captain and everyone else knew that they had but a single option, one that needed to be implemented now.

"Time to move!" the Captain stated informing Lieutenant Mitshiba, who had been he one with the temporal controls set at her station the device needed to be activated now.

A strange sensation passed through everyone as the image on the main view screen became blurr and the lights on the bridge dimmed.  Something had definitely happened, but what?

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P091: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 29 - 1920 ("Restoring Hope")
-=-=-
"Restoring Hope"
[Previous post: "The Talk"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 31227.1920 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

"How did you find out about the device?" Shutaar asked of the CNS. Although the conversation had moved away from that subject several times now, the J'Den woman had always found a way to bring it back to that particular point.  It had proven to be a sore spot that she had been unwilling to let go of.

"As I explained to you before, we received information from the future," Adriana replied once again while making sure that the name of Lenaas was not mentioned.  The friction between the two women had been impossible to miss and the Counselor knew that any mention of that name would greatly undermine what she and the rest of the BASTET's crew had been trying to accomplish.

"How can you be certain that this information was not sent by the Masters to insure they would be unopposed," Shutaar continued, the J'Den refusing at every step to accept that the dream of her people could be their ultimate undoing.

"You realise that if you tell her that it was Lenaas who travelled back from the future to warn you guys about this temporal mess, she's is going to lose it and flat out accuse her hated fellow J'Den of wanting to use this situation to see a change in the leadership of the race.  Come to think of it Shutaar may even go as far as to claim that Lenass and the Masters are working together," Amanda voiced from the biobed next to the one their patient had been on.  "The woman takes paranoia to a whole new level and I doubt that there is anything you can say or do to change that."

Not wishing to go through another argument with the illusion of her twin sister, for fear of being discovered and labeled as the nut case that she already believed herself to be, Adriana ignored the mental projection and focussed instead on the arguing J'Den.  "You have to trust us, we are trying to do what is best, not only for your people but for everyone including us. The Masters already have at their disposal dimensional travel technology, which means that there is the possibility of them at some point coming to my dimension and wanting to enslave the population of world.  Now, based on the race that was described to us by you and your people, the Federation would probably be able to fight off such an invasion, but not if the Masters also have a temporal drive at their disposal.  If we take into account the strength of the new weapons we have seen them use, we can pretty much say that it is beyond a certainty that they have a working temporal drive.  That would make them impossible to be stopped. Our only advantage is that they have not yet mastered the device, time travel or both and are going about their goal as best they can to make sure to keep their new strength and power.  A strength and power that they obtained through you and your people's overwhelming desire to reclaim your world by whatever means available.  Without the temporal drive the Masters do not become this force that is impossible to be stopped and your people continue on living even if it is not on your home world."

"Not very Counsellor like there sis," Amanda playfully snarled from the other biobed, taking the silence that had immediately followed Adriana's tirade as a complete and absolute failure on her part.  The anger that gradually began to show on Shutaar's face had only further indicated that the J'Den woman had not been at all pleased by what Ensign Lopez had said.

-=-=-
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1940 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

"This is madness," the First Officer said in frustration after the results of their latest simulation came into view. "We are checking the validity of variables that we are not even sure are right while we wait to find a way to actually get that device to work beyond stopping time around us."

"Maybe we could install some sort of gradient switch on the device," Aki joked, the latest report from the Engineering team having show them not having had any success in understanding the way the alien machine worked.  "Right now the best we can do is to turn it on and off, and turning it off I am sure would not be such a good idea with a Masters ship so close to us."

The doors to the turbolift opened just as Commander Janeel spoke. "Turning it off at this point is not an option, What we need to figure out a way to alter the tachyon balance created by the device or be stuck in temporal limbo forever."

"Maybe I can help," Shutaar said as she and the Ship's Counselor stepped onto the bridge, Adriana having obviously managed to convince the J'Den woman that the course of action they had been on had been for the benefit of everyone including her own people who, at this point in time, were looking at a rapid and likely painful extermination.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P090: USS BASTET: Iverson: Day 29 - 1850 ("The Talk")
---
"The Talk"
(Previous Post: "Temporal Mood")
---

Setting: USS BASTET, Corridor, on route to Sickbay
Stardate: 31227.1850 (Based on standard passage of time and not that of the current dimension)

"Commander Janeel," Selene called out, forcing the woman who had been following few steps back to speed up to reach the side of already speed walking Commanding Officer.

"Yes Captain?" the Intelligence Liaison Officer and Mission Specialist replied, suspecting that they would be talking about a tactic they would use in speaking with Shutaar to impress upon her the importance of the success of their mission through time.

"Counselor Lopez has been with Shutaar since her having been rescued and brought on board the ANUBIS," Captain Iverson explained, her gaze locked on some unseen point down the curved corridor they were in. "I believe that it would be best if Ensign Lopez was the one to speak to Shutaar first. Hopefully the two of them have already started 'chatting things up'."

"A gentler, more compassionate approach could have better results," Janeel agreed with audible reservations. "That is *if* Shutaar is actually willing to listen. Given what she saw, namely the ease with which their ships were destroyed and people killed, and her subsequent learning that the Masters want to systematically wipe out the J'Den from existence may have placed her in a state of mind from which there is no coming back from."

"Let's hope that Counselor Lopez will be able to reach her and make her understand the scope of what we are trying to do," Selene calmly stated as they reached the entrance to Sickbay.  "There is far more at stake than the survival of a single race."

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 31227.1853 (Based on standard passage of time and not that of the current dimension)

Captain Iverson and Commander Janeel stepped into Sickbay to find a flustered looking Ensign Lopez several meters away from the biobed where Shutaar had been resting, the Counsellor having apparently been in the middle of some sort of debate before being surprised by the unannounced arrival of the two Officers. 

"Captain, Commander," Adriana offered as she rapidly approached the two women with a hint of concern, wondering in silence if they had heard the latest exchange and argument that had transpired between herself and the twin sister who had actually not been there.

"We need Shutaar's help," Captain Iverson explained without wasting any time although given the unique nature of their predicament, time might not have been as much an issue as before.  "The plan is to travel to the future and attempt to convince the J'Den not to use the temporal device which would end up falling into the hands of the Masters. This would in turn lead to the annihilation of her people along with what we fear might be countless others throughout the multiverse. What she witnessed today is but the first step of the Masters' plan, a plan that we must stop before it even starts."

The Ensign just stood still, blinking rapidly as if trying to process what she had been told.

"Counsellor?"

"Sorry," Adriana apologized as she snapped out of her daze, "I was just trying to get a sense of what you have just said and to be honest it is quite a lot to take in all in one shot.  Traveling through time to stop something that has not yet happened and which the J'Den had wanted for so very long because it will lead to them losing everything.  Can we convince an entire race to give up on their life-long dream regardless of what it may lead to?"

"I know it will not be easy, that is why I would like for you to take lead in speaking with Shutaar," Selene stated, the discussion with Commander Janeel prior to their arrival to Sickbay having make it clear that this had still been a good way to deal with the situation concerning the depressed J'Den woman.  "We both realize that this may be a longshot, but we have to try. There is too much at stake here for us to leave anything to chance. Any help, any insight that she can provide would be immeasurable and could save countless civilizations including her own."

"I will do my best Captain," Adriana said as she straightened out her uniform, the task that she had received having been monumental in so many different ways.  Her lungs slowly filled with a deep breath as the Counselor walked back to the biobed where the J'Den woman was. the Ensign preparing her thoughts as best she could for what would follow.  "Shutaar? We need to talk."

"There is nothing more to talk about," the J'Den replied, keeping her face turned away from the woman with whom she had been talking to before. "Hundreds of years of memories were erased from history and soon even the name of my race will be lost to the emptiness of space."

"Shutaar," Adriana said more forcefully as she took hold of the hand of the emotionally crushed J'Den woman.  "Your people were nothing but slaves at one point, broken and without hope, but one person decided to stand and fight. That person inspired others and over the course of centuries your people managed to drive the Masters out.  That is no small achievement, but it did start with one person who decided not to give into despair and to see beyond the present to a better future."

"The Masters are much stronger than we remember them to be," Shutaar said through her tears, "and their thirst for J'Den blood is beyond measure.  They will not rest until each and every single member of my people is killed, not enslaved, but *killed*, their memories forever erased from history.  It is only a matter of time before the future of my people is forever set to never be."

Counselor Lopez paused for an instant, looking back at Captain Iverson and Commander Janeel as if showing them that there had been no way for Shutaar to be made to see beyond what she had experienced and felt.  Knowing that the Captain and Intelligence Liaison Officer would step in with far less gentle means, Adriana decided to try once last time.

"You mentioned time," the Counselor began having figured that there had been no reason to keep the presence and status of the temporal device on board the BASTET a secret. "What if we could change the course of history and insure a safe future for your people?"

"That is impossible," Shutaar countered with, her expression having shifted from deep depression to confused disbelief.

"We know of the device your people had been working on," Ensign Lopez admitted. "It is on board out vessel and it is operational, at least on some level."

"It is true," Captain Iverson said as she joined the Counselor next to the biobed.  "We are still trying to figure out how to properly make it work, but we have managed to get some interesting results so far.  We suspect that the Masters have come to this point in time to destroy the J'Den to insure that they can rule over this and other dimensions unchallenged. We need your help to make sure that this does not happen."

"The device works?" the J'Den said, actually showing a smile on her lips. "We can go back and reclaim our world."

"No you cannot," Commander Janeel said as she joined into the conversation believing that a third voice might further demonstrate the importance and limits of what they needed to do.

"From what we have been able to piece together," Captain Iverson explained not wanting to specifically state the source of the information, "it is your desire to go back to the past to reclaim your world that leads to the destruction of your entire race.  It would seem that multiple attempts had been made but that each one made matters worse until the device fell into the hands of the Masters."

"We need your help to convince the J'Den of the future *not* to use the temporal device," Adriana said in conclusion, bringing everything that had been said to a single, alas not so simple, goal.

"Reclaiming our world from the devastation caused by the Masters has been the one and only driving force for my people," Shutaar admitted in anger.  "It would be like trying to convince the Masters *not* to conquer, it is part of who and what we are."

"Then you condemn your race to extinction and countless others to suffer the same fate that your people endured the first time they encountered the Masters, total and this time everlasting slavery," Captain Iverson said driving her point home thinking that it had been time to use a more direct and harsh approach.

"I will try," the J'Den agreed, her voice and posture having returned to that of a defeated woman with nothing to fight for.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1915 (Based on standard passage of time and not that of the current dimension)

"How are we doing?" Captain Iverson inquired as she and Commander Janeel returned to the bridge, Counselor Lopez having stayed in Sickbay to continue her efforts to help Shutaar.

"We might have found something, but we are still in the theoretical testing phase," Commander Valentine reported. "The temporal device is creating both tachyons and anti-tachyons in perfect balance and we believe that offsetting this balance may cause us to travel through time."

"We believe that a higher anti-tachyon count would shift the temporal balance we are currently experiencing and propel us towards the past as a rate proportionate to that of the created imbalance," Lieutenant Mitshiba further explained.  "The computer simulations show that it should work, our only problem is that we are using a great many guesses and estimates to test the theory.  We would actually need to affect the balance in question and as of right now we have yet to figure out how to accomplish that."

"So we have an actual theory but no way to test it," the Captain noted with a sigh.

"Unfortunately that's pretty much it," Sarena agreed, sharing in the visible disappointment of their Captain.  "We have the entire Engineering team working on trying to figure out how the device is actually working and how we can go about making the modifications we need."

"So until we can figure that out, we are stuck here in temporal limbo," Selene unhappily said as she sat in her chair, her gaze falling on the energy bolt that had been launched from the Masters' ship and which no longer was a threat to them, the BASTET having moved out of the path of the deadly blast.

---
Non-Mission Message:

This is getting long so i will end it here.  Did not do that much story wise but still managed to move a few things ahead.  Shutaar will help, at least in whatever way she can as soon as we figure out a way to get *when* we need to go.

This is turning out to be a truly amazing story, and I am beyond impressed by the posting rate for this unit which was initially meant to be 'slower', not that I am at all complaining. So keep up the writing, all I ask is that we try to avoid adding in more unexpected twists to this story as I believe we have more than enough to keep us busy for a long time (no pun intended).

---
Jessica Solarik

Captain Selene Fiona Iverson [Access Character BIO for Selene Iverson]
Commanding Officer
USS BASTET

&

Lieutenant Commander Maya [Access Character BIO for Maya]
Chief Science Officer
USS ANUBIS

"To see the world in a grain of sand,
and a heaven in a wild flower.
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
and eternity in an hour."
- William Blake (British, 1757-1827)
M02-P089: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 29 - 1855 ("Temporal Mood")
"Temporal Mood"
Previous post: "Not If But When"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1855 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

Every time she glanced up at the main view screen Aki would feel strange, seeing the Masters ship and energy bolt from their weapons frozen in space and time.  When she had reported that they had been 'out of time' the Chief Science Officer had not expected her words to be so accurate.  Thanks to the temporal device now integrated into their system, he BASTET had truly been an entity functioning outside of time.

Through her research and work, Aki could not help but wonder if this had been how races who lived outside of linear time saw the universe?  To be able to take a single moment and freeze it so that it could be observed for as long as it needed or deserved to be.  Their immediate objective had been clear and of the highest importance, but Mitshiba hoped beyond all hopes that should their mission be a success that they would be able to hold on to the temporal device and use it to explore the universe in a way never before imagined.

"Did you notice that the device is actually generating anti-tachyons?" Commander Valentine asked.  "I had not noticed this before."

"Before we were rushing against time to find answers. Now we actually have all the time we need to explore the endless possibilities before us," Aki pointed out, the concept of not having to worry about any sort of deadline having been something truly remarkable.

"I would not go as far as to claim that we have endless time," the First Officer countered with as she pointed to the time display in the corner of the science station.  "Time out there may have stopped, but for us it is still moving forward as it always has.  This means that sooner or later the anti-matter tanks will run dry, our energy supplies will become depleted and we as living creatures will grow too old to continue on.  We are functioning outside of the normal flow of time as you pointed out, but we are still very much a slave to it."

"You make it sound as if time was a living entity," Mitshiba laughed, her scientific knowledge and approach to the universe not accepting such a possibility.

Commander Valentine stopped what she had been doing and turned to face Aki. "You said it yourself that there are too many possibilities available to explain what is happening and that there are some that are beyond our understanding and imagination.  What if time *is* a living entity and that somehow all of this has injured it in some way?  Maybe that is why we are able to do what we are doing, because time itself is helping us to fix the damage the J'Den and Masters have caused."

"Please tell me that you don't actually believe that?" Aki gasped, ready to fall off her chair.

"Like you said," Sarena grinned, "one of endless possibilities."

"The anti-tachyons you detected are in perfect balance with the amount of tachyons also being generated by the temporal device," Mitshiba pointed out having chosen to return to their work instead of continuing to entertain the idea of time having been some sort of living entity.  "Maybe the correlation between those two particles is what dictates our relative position against the rest of space-time."

"An interesting theory," the First Officer noted with interest.  "The question is which one do we alter to get us to move ahead in time?  We have not figured out how the device actually works and here we are trying to modify its output. If we do something wrong, we could find ourselves at the very beginning of time or at the other end where nothing exists."

"The basic rules of temporal physics should not be all that different from those of the physical world," Aki stated as she called up various formulas on her display panel. "When two opposing forces are in perfect balance, the end result is a cancellation of any actual effect.  Two people pushing against one another with the exact same force will mean that neither one of them will move.  Give one of them a slight advantage over the other, and the effects will be notable, even if not immediately visible.  If we offset this tachyon and anti-tachyon balance by only a small fraction, we should be able to observe a difference proportionate to the created imbalance."

"Time may not be happy with us playing with this perfect balance she has created," the First Officer teasingly said.

"By your own theory, time would actually guide us to make the right decision and would protect us as much as it can to avoid us making matters worse," the Chief Science Officer countered with, using Sarena's own ideas back against her.

"Alright, no more joking around," Valentine conceded. "What is your best guess?"

"I would say, using a best guess and what we know about the impact of tachyons on the fabric of space-time, that shifting the balance towards the positive end of the spectrum should allow us to control our forward motion through time," Aki theorised.  "The greater the imbalance, the faster we should be able to travel through time and even allow us to predict with relative accuracy our temporal destination once we have observed the relationship between the imbalance differential and the observed passage of time."

"Right then," the Commander noted. "In Janeel speak, positive means forward in time, negative means backwards in time. This seems simple enough even for her to get it. Let's start with a 0.01% shift and see what happens."

"Sounds like a plan," Mitshiba chuckled, "I just have to figure out how to actually have the device act as we need it to.  We have not identified what component is actually creating the tachyons, let alone the anti-tachyons.  Actually, for all we know it might be a reaction to the device having been linked to the Dimensional Jump Drive.  We have no base of reference as to how the temporal device was ever intended to work."

"Trial and error will need to be our primary tools for the time being," Commander Valentine suggested.  "Let's try to get as much done in test mode as we can before we actually try anything. Have the computer create a simulation based on what we know, what we think we know and what we are simply guessing at.  Once we have something a little more concrete we can let the Captain decide how we proceed."

"Let's hope that she's in a mood to help us," Aki muttered, playing in jest with the idea that time itself might have some sort of influence in the outcome of their work.

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M02-P088: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 29 - 1835 ("Not If But When")
=-=
"Not If But When"
[previous post was "Broken Hopes" by the brilliant Marissa]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Turbolift on route to Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1835

Janeel silently admitted to herself that the Captain had been correct. Trying to deal with the Masters here and now would be a waste of time, their ships, their technology and most important their drive to see their new supremacy remain intact having been impossible to go up again, especially not for a single ship.  The future Lenaas had instructed them not to destroy the temporal device, and the ILO / Mission Specialist now fully understood why. The device had been their only way to bring the Masters back down to the race they had been and deny them the past, present and future that they had forged for themselves.

Shutaar had not said a lot, but what she had said had been more than enough for Janeel to return to the bridge and inform their Captain of what should be their course of action. The temporal device was their only advantage, one that they would need to use to its absolute limit to not only save the J'Den as a race but to save the multiverse from the wrath of a new unimaginable threat.

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1835

"Captain," Janeel said, requesting the woman's attention the instant that the ILO / Mission Specialist had stepped onto the bridge.  The Commander actually grinned for a split second as she noted on the main view screen that the BASTET had moved out of the way of the Masters' weapon's fire.

"How is Shutaar?" Selene asked, the expression on Janeel's features leaving the Captain to imagine the worst.

"Broken and without hope," the Commander replied.  "The Masters made their intents very clear to her. They have the technology to destroy her people and kill everyone, and they are not afraid to use it.  Their goal is to insure that the new timeline they have created for themselves remains as it was made, as them being the conqueror or everything they can reach.  It is equally clear that they will not allow anyone to stand in their way to achieve that goal."

"So *our* goal is as clear as theirs," Captain Iverson noted with relinquished acceptance.  "We have to stop them and restore the timeline as it was, or at least to be as close to the original as possible."

"Captain," the ILO / Mission Specialist cautiously began.  "I do have one question, well maybe more than one. If the Masters obtained the device from what is currently our past which was brought back by the J'Den from what would be their and our future, how are we still having this discussion? Should we not have been drawn into the new timeline without any knowledge of the previous?"

"There might be a few reasons to explain why we are caught in the middle of this temporal paradox," Mitshiba offered, her chosen field of work along with the integration of the temporal device into the BASTET's system having granted her a unique perspective into their situation.  "Lenaas stated that this would be the last time she would be able to warn us, indicating that there had been other attempts from the J'Den to reclaim their world and following that likely multiple efforts to stop the Masters.  Either way it is very possible that the multiple trips back to a specific point in time by the J'Den have weakened the temporal structure of space-time allowing for us to experience in part both cause and effect of parallel timelines.  Due to temporal conflicts, none of these timelines have been set as being the only one, which means that there is still, forgive the word, time to fix what has happened."

"I already have a headache and this was only one of several possibilities," Janeel sighed as she rolled hr eyes and shook her head, temporal mechanics not having been a subject that she enjoyed in the least.

"What are the other possible reasons?" Commander Valentine inquired, the First Officer not suffering the same aversion as the BASTET's ILO / Mission Specialist.

"Our initial proximity to the temporal device, that was on the RAMAN, might have shielded us from the changing timeline, although that one is a little harder to fully reason as according to our sensors the device only became operational after our arrival," Misaki explained.  "Then again, it is possible that the temporal field generated by he device actually travelled back in time thus affecting us before it was operational."

"That one is going to give *me* a headache," Commander Valentine admitted.  "Any other possibilities?"

"Several in fact," the Chief Science Officer noted with a nod of her head.  "When you consider that there is actually only one temporal device and that it somehow has made its way into the hands of three separate controlling forces at the exact same time; namely the Masters, the J'Den and ourselves, we are looking at a shattering of time which leaves us open to endless possibilities that we may not even be able to imagine at this point."

"Alright, it's official, my head is going to explode," Janeel said as she fell backwards onto the nearest available chair.

"The best and easiest way to explain what we are likely dealing with is this: there are now several timelines directly overlapping one another," Lieutenant Mitshiba explained as she stepped into the middle of the bridge. "The Masters are trying to keep the timeline they have created intact, this by protecting their obtaining the device in the past. The J'Den from a future point are trying to reclaim their world in the past while avoiding the device to fall into the hands of the Masters. Then there is us, caught in the middle trying to force one timeline to be superimposed on the others.  The problem is that both the J'Den and Masters have a fully functional temporal device while we are only working with the initial prototype."

"Either way we need to stop the Masters from getting their hands on the device," Captain Iverson noted with certitude.

"Which means that we have to stop the J'Den from using it in the first place to travel back in time to try and save their world from the initial Masters' invasion," Mitshiba corrected. "To insure that the timeline is firmly secured though, we will need to travel to several points in time and establish a clear and specific set of events that will hopefully become the prime and only timeline."

"Of course this was not going to be easy," Janeel moaned as she seriously debated returning to Sickbay.

"What is our first temporal objective?" the Captain asked, at least wanting them to have a goal for the crew to work towards.

"We need to travel to the future where the J'Den are about to use the temporal device to go back and confront the Masters," the Chief Science Officer stated.  "Once the device is taken out of the equation we can travel back into the past and stop the Masters from obtaining and activating the device.  With both ends of this timeline fixed, the final result should be a single timeline in which *no* temporal devices will be in use."

"If we take out the temporal devices from play at both ends of the timeline, are we not risking trapping ourselves somewhere in time?" Commander Valentine wondered out loud.

"Unfortunately there is no way to know for sure as to what will happen," Misaki sadly admitted. "We are dealing with something that is, as far as our knowledge of time travel is concerned, impossible, so there is no way to know for sure what the outcome of our actions will be."

Captain Iverson chuckled drily.  "Best guess scenario with everything to lose.  Always love playing against the odds.  Commander Valentine, you and Lieutenant Mitshiba get working on getting us when we need to be in the future.  I will head down to Sickbay and see if there is anything that Shutaar can give us that would help convince the J'Den not to try and travel back in time. Commander Janeel, you are with me."

"I doubt that Shutaar is going to be in any sort of mood to talk," the ILO / Mission Specialist warned.

"The success of this mission and the continued safe existence of her people are at stake," Captain Iverson quickly stated in return.  "Beyond that, I am not placing the lives of my crew on the line for her to back down because she had lost hope.  There is more at play here than a single civilization and she will help us one way or the other."

Janeel quickly fell in step behind the Captain, impressed by the woman's conviction and sense of purpose, something that alas had not been a standard occurrence in Commanding Officers.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P087: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 29 - 1750 ("Broken Hopes")
-=-=-
"Broken Hopes"
[Previous post: "Time for a Break"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Corridor
Stardate: 31227.1820 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

"First we all run like mad with our lives hanging in the balance and a second later we are all taking it as easy as can be as if we have not a single worry in the world," the illusion of Adriana's twin sister huffed as she walked next to the Ship's Counselor who had been heading to Sickbay.

"It's nice to not have to run as if your life depends on it," Ensign Lopez admitted, both to her sister and to Commander Janeel who had been only a few steps ahead.

"This calm is an illusion brought up by the temporal device," the ILO noted in all seriousness. "We should not be so quick to drop our guard.  The Masters possess a similar device and have a lot more practice using it, we could find ourselves in a whole lot of trouble in no time."

Lopez nodded, recalling that exact same argument that the Commander had presented to their Commanding Officer.  "Captain Iverson did agree with your concerns and is doing everything possible to keep this situation under relative control, I am not sure what more you expect her to do at this point?"

"We have a Master's vessel directly in our sights, instead of trying to figure out how to play with time we should be focussing on finding a weakness for us to exploit," Janeel replied not trying to hide her displeasure at the way the situation was being handled and the added fact that she had been sent along with the Ship's Counselor to check on the rescued J'Den.

"Maybe Shutaar will be able to provide us with some useful information," Adriana offered with hope.  "She saw the fleet in action and was on board their lead ship. Who knows, she might be able to provide the information you seek, which is likely why Captain Iverson sent you to see her."

"Nicely played Counselor, nicely played," Janeel half chuckled knowing that the only reason why she had been sent to Sickbay had been to get her away from the Captain, yet Lopez's reasoning had been very political and worthy of a Counsellor with far more experience than the Ensign possessed.

-=-=-
Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 31227.1825 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

Even from a distance it had been easy to see that Shutaar had gone through hell and back. The rescue while in an entirely different dimension might have saved her life, but the time she had spent on board the Masters' lead ship had left many scars which Adriana suspected had been both physical and emotional.

"How are you doing?" Janeel gently inquired, the woman resting on the biobed having appeared battered and broken, this even after the medial staff had taken care of her injuries.

"How did you save me?" Shutaar asked, the woman appearing to be on the edge of tears.  Adriana had always seen the J'Den leader as a strong woman commanding respect wherever she went, but the woman looking back at Commander Janeel appeared anything but.

"It's a long story," the Commander answered certain that a full explanation as to how events had unfolded would only make the situation worse.

"You should have left me to die," the J'Den said as she turned her head, unable to hold back her tears any longer.

"You can't give up hope," Adriana stepped in, her voice as soft, caring and supportive as she could manage.  "You can always rebuild your civilization as you did before. You proved to the universe that your will to survive was stronger than anything else."

"Not this time," Shutaar admitted through her broken, sadden voice.  "The Masters are stronger than we could have ever imagined them to be and their goal is to singlehandedly kill each and every one of my people, wherever they may be."

"Surely..." the Counselor began but was interrupted by Shutaar who snapped her head back to glare at the two Starfleet officers standing next to her.

"I remember the stories of what the Masters were when they first came to our world," Shutaar said as tears freely flowed from her eyes. "I remember the feeling that was passed down from generation to generation as to how powerless we were to stop them.  I personally recall the way they were when their experiments granted my people genetic memories.  The Masters were monsters then, now they are demons that are a thousand times worse.  They have adapted their weapons to kill us, to kill every single one of us in the most rapid and devastating way they could imagine. They cut through our ships as if they had not even been there. I was brought onto their ship for a single reason; to show me their newfound powers and their willingness to use it without hesitation or restraints. There is no hope for my people... or anyone else who dares to oppose them."

Adriana quickly glanced over to Janeel wondering if this had been enough Intel for the ILO. The Counselor suspected that this would be all that Shutaar would be willing or even able to share at this time. What she had seen had been the complete and unchallengeable end of her people, and that had been more than any leader could take.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P086: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 29 - 1755 ("Time for a Break")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Time for a Break"
[previous post (Sometimes Luck Is On Your Side)]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS BASTET, Main Engineering
Stardate: 31227.1755

It had taken some time but Sarena had begun to understand the way the temporal device had been designed and meant to operate, now getting it to actually work as it had been meant to; that had been an entirely different story.  Mitshiba had been of great help, her understanding of both trans-dimensional travel dynamics and temporal mechanics had made it possible to make some sense of the device and what needed to be done to incorporate it into the BASTET's systems, but the final goal had been well out of reach.

Although their encounter with the Masters had been brief, it had been repeated at nauseum, making it beyond clear that the race was a goal oriented, cruel and merciless one.  That alone drove the crew to do everything they could to insure that the temporal device never fell into their hands... at least not again.  The paradox was interesting to say the least. The J'Den had in some point in the future completed the temporal device and used it to travel back in time to reclaim their home world encountering growing opposition from the Masters each and every time they tried.  At one point their efforts completely failed and the temporal device fell into the hands of the Masters who were quick to use it to reshape history in their favour.

The warning that this had happened had come from the future and indicated that this had not been the first time the J'Den had sought the assistance of the BASTET to rectify the situation making it clear that the device could not simply be destroyed.  Somehow the device needed to be used to travel to some point in time to change the course of events in order to stop the Masters from doing the exact same thing.

The problem was identifying when this pivotal point in time was that they needed to travel to, but first Valentine needed to figure out *how* to get there... then... whenever that may be.

The ship was suddenly and violently rocked by what Sarena quickly realised was weapons fire.

=/\= Bright to Main Engineering... =/\= the call from Captain Iverson came instantly after.

"We are out of time, got it," Valentine replied there having been only one possible scenario to explain what had just happened.  From the Masters' point of view their lead ship had suddenly vanished while the BASTET had remained prompting the one and only acceptable reaction.  "Patching the temporal device directly through the Dimensional Jump Drive matrix. I'm showing a build-up of tachyon particles in our shields as well as through the outer hull.  Looks like it's working but my problem is that I have no way of entering any sort of time coordinate."

The BASTET was again rocked, hard enough that the lights went out for a few seconds.

=/\= Shields at 18%, the next shot will breach our defences and likely rip the outer hull to shreds. Their weapons are simply too powerful for us to hold against, =/\= was the report Commander Valentine heard over the open comm channel.  Whatever time the BASTET might have had, how ever small in quantity it had been, had run out.

"Alright, no testing phase, we're jumping into the deep end. Engaging temporal drive now!"

Sarena realized only after the fact that she had closed her eyes when throwing the switch, and that she had been nervous when reopening them.  When she did though, the Executive Officer quickly looked around to see if she could see anything different or a hint that the device had actually worked.

=/\= Bridge to Commander Valentine, could you please come up to the bridge. =/\=

"On my way," Sarena hesitantly replied.  Obviously something had happened or they would have been hit by another shot from the Masters which would have led to her *not* having been called up to the command deck in such a relaxed manner.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1805 (According to the ship's Chronometer)

Sarena exited the turbolift and immediately noticed the odd scene being displayed on the main view screen. A large, menacing vessel, likely belonging to the Masters, had fired some sort of powerful looking energy bolt that now hung motionless in the emptiness of space separating the two ships.

"We are out of time," the CSciO noted, her play on words not having immediately registered with the Executive Officer.  "I mean we, the BASTET, thanks to whatever the temporal device is doing, are now *outside* what we perceive as being the normal flow of time."

"I thought you'd like to see this," the Captain chimed with a smile almost forming on her lips.  "We do seem to have time now."

"Alright," Sarena nodded with a certain air of satisfaction. "So the device works, now we just need to figure out how to modify the output to be able to travel back and forth through time. Could you spare Mitshiba?"

"Of course," Iverson replied. "In the meantime we'll try to see if we can physically move while in this state.  Would be nice to get out of the line of fire just in case this little 'time stop' decided to restart without any warning.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M02-P085: USS BASTET: Iverson: Day 29 - 1815 ("Sometimes Luck Is On Your Side")
---
"Sometimes Luck Is On Your Side"
(Previous Post: "Alone")
---

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1815 (Based on standard passage of time and not that of the current dimension)

With the crew back together, for a lack of a better way to describe what had happened to them following the arrival into this new and unexplored corner of the multiverse, the work to getting the BASTET back to the dimension of the J'Den had been well underway.

=/\= We should have the Dimensional Jump Drive ready in a few more minutes, some of the basic rules of physics do not seem to be working quite the same way here, =/\= Commander Valentine reported from Main Engineering, knowing that their Captain had been more than anxious to getting the ship and its crew back on task to stopping the Masters and if at all possible saving Shutaar.

"Sensor readings are still very confusing," Lieutenant Mitshiba added from the Bridge's Science station, the woman having returned to the bridge to better assist the First Officer as well as to try and answer some of the questions plaguing the command deck.  "The main view screen is working perfectly and yet we do not see any stars despite the fact that the sensors are picking up distant sources of radiation that would normally be associated with stars and other celestial bodies."

"Maybe whatever had kept us isolated from one another does not want us to see the starts for one reason or another," Counselor Lopez theorized with a sigh, "they might be just as anxious to seeing us go back from where we came from."

"We did deprive them of completing their little research on us," the Intelligence Liaison Officer added. "Who knows how they are taking it?  We could be very lucky just to being here in one piece as we know nothing about them or their technological capabilities."

"Agreed," Serena nodded, "yet another reason why I would not mind getting out of here as quickly as possible."

"Sensors are picking up a rapid growing bias in the fabric of space-time directly ahead of us," Misaki reported which brought a delighted smile to appear on the lips of the Captain.

"Good, looks like Commander Valentine has resolved the problem of the unconventional laws of physics," Serena stated before turning to look at the Chief Science Officer who appeared unimpressed and maybe even a little scared.  "That space-time bias in the fabric of space is not coming from us is it?"

"No Captain," Misaki reluctantly admitted, leaving the command staff present on the Bridge to easily guess what the source had been and what would be happening next.

"We have a ship coming through and by the markings it is the same ship that had us pinned back before we escaped here," Commander Janeel reported. "I will admit that they have some advance tracking system to be able to find us this quickly."

"Which only makes our situation that much more complicated," the Captain stated knowing that this discovery would mean that the BASTET would have an even harder time trying to stay one step ahead of the Masters in their efforts to protect the Temporal Device to be able to use it against them.  "RED ALERT!"

Seconds stretched into minutes as the claxon and red flashing lights of the condition status filled the bridge.

"Communications are working, they are just not trying to contact us," the Intelligence Liaison Officer and Mission Specialist reported with confused surprise.

"Could they be in the same situation that we found ourselves in when arriving here?" Adriana suggested, this having been the only way to explain why the Masters had not try to once again threaten them in order to regain control of the Temporal Device.

"If they are in the same situation, there is no way for us to know how long that will last, we need to take advantage of this delay and get out of here," Janeel quickly added.

Selene considered the possibility offered by her Counselor as well as the advice forwarded by the Mission Specialist. Leaving this place had been now more than ever a priority but Captain Iverson had wanted to try one thing first.  "Helm bring us in as close to that ship as possible, maybe we can find and take Shutaar back."

"Captain," the Chief Science Officer rapidly objected, "I am guessing that it is due to the properties of this dimension, but our sensors are barely able to register anything inside the ship, let alone be able to identify a specific life form for us to lock onto and beam back."

"I suspected that much," Selene acknowledged as she stood from her chair. "To whoever or whatever is out there monitoring us, I know that you are still watching and listening.  A being very similar to us is being held captive on board the vessel that has just entered your dimension.  We ask for your help to allow us to save their life.  We promise not to interfere in the rest of your research and we will leave as soon as we are able *after* we have rescued our friend."

"Do you truly believe that this will work?" Janel whispered, her tone being less than enthusiastic with the prospect of them receiving any sort of assistance.  "I am just worried that we might be pushing our luck here."

Captain Iverson remained silent and hopeful. Whatever force had separated the crew upon their arrival to this dimension had gone through great lengths to insure that their isolation remained intact.  It had been hoped that a new ship being available to further their research would make them be more willing to help, especially if it meant a quicker departure of the BASTET from their dimension.

"Sensors are picking up one life form," Misaki reported with overflowing joy, "reading one J'Den female."

"Have her transported directly to Sickbay," the Captain ordered and just as she had been ready to contact the First officer, it was her instead who called.

=/\= Not sure what happened but everything fell right into place suddenly. Dimensional Jump Drive is ready to be used at your discretion. =/\=

"Set dimensional coordinate to 000, -048, 000 and engage as soon as possible," Captain Iverson ordered as she quickly returned to her seat, rather stunned that everything had gone so well.

"Coordinate already set in Captain," Lieutenant Mitshiba stated.  "Dimensional Jump Drive has been engaged and we should have an opening large enough in the fabric of space-time in just a few seconds."

"Give me full power to shields and structural integrity. Helm, take us in at maximum safe speed, I want us to be out of this dimension yesterday," Selene ordered.

"Captain," Janeel said as she hesitantly called for the attention of the Commanding Officer.  "We do have a Temporal Device on board; it might be safer for the time being not to make such statements unless you truly mean it."

Selene rolled her eyes and sighed.  "Helm, get us out of here, NOW!"

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1750

"We are back to our exact starting point in the dimension of the J'Den," Lieutenant Mitshiba announced,  "attempting to calculate how long we were gone using sensor logs on background radiation, planetary positioning and status of the fleet at the time of our departure."

"Hopefully we did not lose too much time," Captain Iverson wished out loud before looking back over her shoulder to the Intelligence Liaison officer, certain that Janeel would again remind her of the presence of the Temporal Device on board.

"Actually, we have lost no time at all," Misaki reported. "Sensor readings are exactly the same as when we left, it looks like we returned at the precise moment of our departure with maybe only a .04 to .08 seconds difference.

"Perfect," the Captain exclaimed as she reopened communication with her First Officer down in Main Engineering.  "Commander Valentine, start working on figuring out the Temporal Device enough for us to use it to allow us to stop the Masters."

=/\= Aye aye Captain, and I guess I should not make any inquiries about how much time I have? =/\=

"Just get working Commander, Bridge out,"

---
Jessica Solarik

Captain Selene Fiona Iverson [Access Character BIO for Selene Iverson]
Commanding Officer
USS BASTET

&

Lieutenant Commander Maya [Access Character BIO for Maya]
Chief Science Officer
USS ANUBIS

"To see the world in a grain of sand,
and a heaven in a wild flower.
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
and eternity in an hour."
- William Blake (British, 1757-1827)
M02-P084: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 29 - 1750 ("Alone")
=-=
"Alone"
[previous post was "Dark Emptiness" by the challenging Marissa]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1750

The jump to this new dimension, whatever it was, had been a rough one to say the least, but as much as the ILO / Mission Specialist might have wanted to complain she could not bring herself to.  Aside from the lack of light and power, the ship had appeared to be whole which had greatly increased the odds of everyone having survived the journey.

"Captain, are you alright?" Janeel inquired figuring that if she had been back on her feet the ship's CO had surely been as well. When no reply came, the ILO / Mission Specialist feared the worst.  After several moments of frantically searching about with her hands and the occasional toe stump, Janeel located the central chair which to her dismay was empty.  A subsequent search of the surrounding floor also proved futile producing no signs of Captain Iverson or anyone else.

"That makes no sense," the ILO / Mission Specialist noted to herself as she ran her hand through her messy hair.  "The dimensional jump may have been rough, but nothing happened that could account for missing crew members."  Janeel paused for a moment as she calmed herself and came up with a plan of action.  "No power means no lights, no computer, no sensors and without any sort of remote access to the systems, the only way to fix this is for me to get down to Engineering and try to restore emergency systems.  How are can it be?"

With that Janeel made her way to the turbolift, using her memory of the bridge's layout to avoid running into more things. It was only when she arrived at her destination, after stumping her toes a few more times, that the ILO / Mission Specialist realized the error of her ways.  "Where is my head? There is no power to drive the turbolifts and even less for the door sensors to detect my presence.  I should be thankful that Main Engineering is only 12 decks below.  Alright, so down the jefferies tubes but first i need to find one of those emergency hand held lights.  My toes will thank me for that."

It had taken several minutes for Janeel to locate the emergency panel and retrieve the item she had been searching for. A quick scan of the bridge confirmed what she had initially suspected; that she had been alone and that there had been no visible clues as to explaining why this had been.

"No bodies or traces of struggle, whatever happened left no traces," the ILO / Mission Specialist mused to herself. "If they were transported off the bridge by a hostile force, why leave me behind?  Then again, even if they were taken away by someone in this unknown dimension who is friendly to the Federation, why take them and not me?" Janeel paused as she once more scanned the bridge hoping to find some sort of hint as to what had happened, but to no avail.  "My first priority has to be to restore minimal power to these systems, only after will I be to start answering these questions instead of adding more to an already rapidly growing list."

With a clearly defined task in mind, Janeel made her way to the Jefferies tube access panel which she took several minutes to pry open.  When it finally gave way, the ILO / Mission Specialist was surprised by not only the panel having finally come loose but with some of the consoles coming back to life.

"Better late than never," she huffed leaving the open panel on the ground, just in case.  "Commander Valentine and Lieutenant Mitshiba have likely helped in restoring power, now at least I can get some answers," Janeel said as she made her way to the operation's station, her toes forever thankful that she had been able to see where all of the steps were.

"No lifesigns anywhere on the ship? Well, internal sensors are not working or I'm not even here," the statement had been meant as a joke but as she glanced around the empty bridge a cold sensation coursed through her body.  "Let's see if I can re-establish internal communications. This should give me a chance to also test the state of the computer and see if i can get some sensor readings of our dimensional jump."

Everytime Janeel would be able to access one of the BASTET`s system, the results would pretty much end up to be the same. Nothing worked. Either there had been no reply to any of her calls or the files she had managed to find had all been empty.  The more she tried, the more her efforts proved futile leaving the ILO é Mission Specialist to start looking at more unlikely possibilities.

::The ship is intact and life support is operational, that much the internal sensors seem willing to tell me, so where is everyone?:: Janeel thought in silence as she leaned back into the OPS Officer's chair. ::Sensor logs are empty so there is no account of our jump and no available information to know what coordinates had been entered and if we have even made it to that particular target.  The computer is operational but seems unable to give me any actual useful information.  Something doesn't add up here, there are just too many inconsistencies to explain what I am seeing.::

Reaching for the light that had been resting on the corner of the console, Janeel cast the light on the open access to the Jefferies tube.  Without saying a word she stood from the chair and made her way to where her light had been shining. Just as she reached the area and bent down to make her way into the Jefferies tube an audio signal drew the woman's attention back to the OPS Station.

"Thank you," Janeel whispered, the small sound having proven her suspicions.  ::Someone or something is doing their best to keep me here and to make me think that I am alone, but why?  What are they expecting to get, Intel? Maybe a better understanding of us as individuals and as a crew?:: Janeel took a few seconds as she looked at the flashing light on the console before actually acknowledging it.  "Bridge here."

=/\= Commander Janeel, we are so glad to finally get a hold of someone. For a moment we actually believed that we were the only ones on board, =/\= Commander Valentine stated over the unexpectedly working communications channel.

"We, you are not alone?"

=/\= Lieutenant Mitshiba is with me, where else would she be? =/\=

"The question is slightly more complicated than that, I am alone on the bridge."

=/\= Where is the Captain? =/\=

"She is not here but I am starting to have an idea as to what might have happened," Janeel stated not wanting to give out too much now more than ever certain that someone or something had been watching them.  "Is there a way for you to make it to the bridge?"

=/\= Not sure, we are having a few issues of our own. =/\=

"Such as?"

=/\= Lieutenant Mitshiba appears to be stuck on the ceiling due to a weird malfunction of the gravity plating, or at least that is the best explanation we have at the moment. =/\=

"Stay put and let me try something from up here. Janeel out." the ILO / Mission Specialist said before closing the channel and scanning the bridge once again.  The options had been to either continue the charade and hope to find a way to break free of whatever test they had been the subject of, or she could confront whoever or whatever had been responsible in the hopes of bring this to a quicker end.  Since no one had apparently been injured, the odds had been in favor of whoever or whatever had been responsible to likely not be the type to end this in a gruesome way.

"Alright, the game is up," Janeel said as loud as she could.  "I know that you are out there, watching us and trying to keep us apart.  I have no idea why, but as you can see we are stubborn creatures who will do everything in our power to find a solution to whatever problem we are presented with.  I am certain that the Captain will be more than happy to answer any and all of your questions if you allow us to be together instead of separated by whatever system you currently have in place."

Silence filled the bridge as Janeel waited for any sort of reply, and after a few moments one came but not in the shape that she had expected.  All of the lights that had been working before suddenly went dark once again leaving the ILO / Mission Specialist to wonder if maybe she had made the wrong choice in confronting whoever or whatever had been out there.  A few moments later, the lights returned along with the standard background noise of the working computer and consoles, but the best part had been that Captain Iverson, Ensign Lopez and the rest of the bridge staff had also returned.

"What happened?" Captain Iverson asked, looking a little stunned by whatever ordeal she had faced while alone on he bridge of her own ship.

"Honestly Captain I am not not entirely certain," Janeel admitted with a faint smile of gratitude in having the crew back.

"Ensign Lopez, are you alright?" the Captain asked having noticed the look of complete horror on the Counselor's face.

As much as she tried to speak, Adriana found it impossible to let a single word out, instead struggling to just breathe.

"Everyone is back and safe," Janeel offered hoping that this would comfort and help the CNS who had obviously faced something beyond words while she had been isolated from the rest of the crew.  The ILO / Mission Specialist helped the Ensign find a seat and then turned to look at their CO.  "Something was keeping us separate, likely for observation.  I do not know exactly why or even how they managed this, but it appears that we were each forced to experience an unplanned solitude.  I can only theorize that this was meant as a test of some sort to see how we would react.

"Alright then," Iverson gently nodded. "Note to self, place this dimension on the *no fly zone* list.  Now let's get back to business. We have the Masters to deal with and a J'Den leader to try and save."

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P083: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 29 - 1750 ("Dark Emptiness")
-=-=-
"Dark Emptiness"
[Previous post: "Edge of Time"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1750

The time loop had finally been broken, and for that Adriana had been beyond grateful. Although she had not considered the J'Den Shutaar to be anywhere close to a friend, it had been very difficult for the CNS to be witness the woman's repeated demise at the hand of the Masters.

"Where are we?" Adriana asked to no one in particular as she felt around, trying to get her bearings since the lights on the bridge had all gone out.  With the emergency lights also out of commission the room had been as dark as could be, and since she had been thrown onto the floor by the force of the dimensional jump, there had been no way for the CNS to know exactly where she ha been in relation to the rest of the of room.

"In the dark," the sarcastic reply of her sister came.  Obviously the travel to another dimension had not placed any distance between the image of the sister and her Starfleet Officer twin.

"Is there anyone here?" the CNS called out, ignoring the illusionary representation of her twin sister with  roll of hr eyes, trying instead to focus on locating someone else.  If the rest of the bridge staff had been incapacitated in some way or worse injured, it had been her duty to locate them and render assistance, 

"No, you're alone and in the dark," Amanda replied from the emptiness that surrounded her sister which only served to further irate Adriana who began to think that it had been her eyesight that had been the issue,

A shower of sparks from a nearby console made the CNS breathe a quick sigh of relief as it confirmed that she had not gone blind, but that happy revelation quickly faded way into panic as she noted that no one else had been on the bridge.

"Hello! Anyone else here?"

"How you made it into Starfleet is beyond me," Adriana scolded her sister.  "You saw it for yourself, you are here alone and now back in the dark," the soft light generated by the sparks having vanished.

"Where did they go?" the CNS asked frantically, actually speaking to her sister in a location other than the quiet isolation of her quarters.

"How would I know? I'm only a figment of your troubled and overactive psyche.  I know what you know, nothing more, nothing less.  What I can tell you is that you are alone and in the dark."

Navigating through the darkness of the bridge, Adriana tried to keep her calm and find some logical reasoning for her having been the only one left on the bridge of the BASTET. "Could the dimensional jump have caused some sort of accident? One that would explain the disappearance of everyone else but me?"

"Maybe they're dead."

"They are NOT DEAD!" Adriana screamed in desperation.

"Fine, fine. Then we're dead." the unseen image of the twin sister offered as a compromise.

"WE are not dead EITHER!" The CNS frustratingly corrected.

"Boy, you are in a nasty mood for someone who actually enjoyed her solitude. Fine, you are right," Amanda admitted from the darkness, "*we* are not dead, I'm not even here. So I guess you're the only one that is dead."

"I am not dead," the twin sister said, her words not having come out as certain as her previous statements, instead coming across more like a hopeful wish.

"How else can you explain that you are the only person on the bridge when just a few seconds ago, before the dimensional jump, there were people all around you including the Captain?" The twin said as she finally emerged from the darkness, her clothes torn to shreds and body bloodied almost beyond recognition. "The Captain would not have left her ship, so the only possible explanation left is that you died in some freakish accident and this is your own little personal hell."

"There has to be another explanation," Adriana hoped as she quickly diverted her eyes away from the nightmarish  illusion of her sister.

"Come on sis, at least there is one good thing about your current situation," Amanda offered before appearing directly in front of Amanda. "You still have me here by your side for the rest of time."

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P082: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 29 - 1750 ("Edge of Time")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Edge of Time"
[previous post (Time For A New Theory)]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS BASTET, Main Engineering
Stardate: 31227.1750

There had been too many new variables to predict in any way how this dimensional jump would go. The BASTET had been locked in some sort of temporal loop; the dimensional rift had been opened inside the shields literally on top of the ship itself; and an alien device meant to open a portal to other times had been attached to the DJD.  With the warp core feeding energy directly into this haphazardly put together contraption it had been a miracle that the entire system had not simply gone supernova when the switch was thrown.

Instead the lights had fluctuated and gone out entirely after a few second following the actual dimensional jump. The darkness that had taken over the ship's Main Engineering section had quickly been interrupted by the repeated showers of sparks that seem to come from everywhere.

Forcing herself off the cold floor Mitshiba searched for the other half of the team that had been working on the device for an undetermined amount of time thanks to the temporal loop. "Commander! Are you alright?"

"That depends on your definition of the term I guess," the reply groggily came. "I feel like my head is in three different places all at the same time, and I won't mention how my body feels."

"Looks like primary power was knocked out during our jump," the CSciO continued truly hoping that this had indeed been the case.

Doing her best to get her head back the way it needed to be, Sarena pushed herself into a sitting position and reached for her comm badge, glad that the lights were out hiding the fact that she had to repeat the attempt a couple of times.  "Main Engineering to Bridge, was the dimensional jump successful?"

The two officers waited for a reply, one that never came.

"Bridge?" Valentine repeated, her fingers having found their target in the comm badge with a much greater accuracy and determination.  "Computer, report on the status of the ship."

Again the two officers waited for a reply, and again nothing but silence met their hopes and expectations.

"The computer as well as the primary power systems may have been taken offline by the jump," Mitshiba theorized.  "There should be some hand-held lights in the emergency compartment beneath the first console."

"Let's see if we can find those lights and start a visual survey of Main Engineering, we need to get an idea of the condition of the ship and crew," the Executive Officer ordered, recalling silently to herself the emergency procedures she needed to implement until such time as she could confirm that the ship and its crew had survived, be it in part or in whole.

"Commander," Mitshiba called out a few seconds later. "Either there is something wrong with my legs or the artificial gravity is also not working.

A shower of sparks filled the room once again giving the two officers the chance to see each other and the get a better idea of the mess they had found themselves in.  "Lieutenant, what are you doing on the ceiling?"

"Aside from hoping not to suddenly fall down to you, I have no idea," the CSciO replied as she desperately began to search for something to hang on to. "It feels like some sort of gravity is keeping me from falling, but if the artificial gravity was somehow reversed, why are you not falling down towards me?"

Sarena carefully tried to stand and to her amazement was able to do so without any problems, her feet somehow having remained firmly anchored on the deck plates.  "Artificial gravity appears to be working as it should, at least in the spot where I am currently standing."

Through the darkness that still surrounded them, the Executive Officer heard a chuckle of puzzlement come from the general direction of the CSciO.  "The artificial gravity plating are not designed to work this way, and this is going to make us getting around that much more difficult."

"Stay put, I will try to find those emergency lamps."

"Trust me Commander I have no intentions of even trying to move from this spot," Misaki confirmed almost glad that there had not been enough light to allow her to see the other woman walking on what would relatively be the ceiling.

The odd echo of footsteps made their way to Misaki who could do nothing more than wait.  "Got them," Sarena announced as two lights appeared through the darkness.  "Be ready, I'm throwing one up at you."

Reluctantly Misaki extended her hands towards the Executive Officer ready to catch the lamp as soon as it would be in range.  What neither one of them expected though was the way the handheld light behaved the moment it left Sarena's hand.

"My guess is that we are dealing with something a lot more complicated than malfunctioning gravity plates," Misaki said, not sure if she had been expected to laugh or be completely confused by the sight of the lamp floating in the air as if there had been absolutely no gravity whatsoever on the ship.

Sarena's eyes were glued onto the slowly moving light as it went through an unexpected ballet of turns and tumbles while it traveled through the air apparently untouched by any sort of gravity. "Where or what did we find our way into this time?"

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M02-P081: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 29 - 1740 ("Time For a New Theory")
"Time For a New Theory"
Previous post: "Grieving"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Main Engineering
Stardate: 31227.1740

How many times had it been?  As far as the ship's chronometer had been concerned Commander Valentine and herself had been at this for nearly two hours now, but as far as the rest of the universe had been concerned, only a few minute had passed. Passed over and over again but only a few minutes nonetheless.

"What if we are looking at this all wrong?" Aki said as she laid of her full length back on the floor.

"Guess it's time for a break," Sarena added before leaning back against the nearest bulkhead not at all disagreeing with the idea of taking a moment's respite. "What are we looking at wrong?"

"Everything," the CSciO replied as she closed her eyes.

"Alright, looks like this break is going to be a little longer than I had expected," the First Officer added with a shake of her head.  "Should I contact the bridge and tell them that we will be taking the next several loops off?"

"We are going under the idea that the rest of the universe is repeating the same few minutes, that somehow this device is throwing everyone except us back in time, but what if it was the other way?" Aki suggested without giving Commander Valentine a chance to offer her thoughts.  "We know that the temporal waves are being bounced off the shields and back at us, so why are we thinking that it is them being sent back?"

"According to the Captain, the exact same events have been taking place," Sarena answered after a few seconds of silence to make sure that she had been expected to actually reply.  "We are the only ones able to act outside of the flow of time."

"The effects are the same, but the mechanics on the other hand are very different. This change of perspective would go a long way to explain why we are incapable of making the changes we are so desperately trying to," the CSciO explained.  "We are looking at ourselves as being the stationary element in this time loop while the rest of the universe is reset several minutes back, but what if it was us being thrown back in time those few minutes. Somehow we are made to replace our older selves, but it would explain why the BASTET cannot leave this exact location as we are anchored in the fabric of space-time."

"Alright, even if I did understand the full implications of this difference, which I do not, how is that helping us?" Sarena asked.  "If we are the ones being bounced back through time at the end of every loop, how do we go about changing this?"

"One of the basic rules of temporal mechanics is that two objects cannot occupy the same physical space at the same time, which is what we are technically doing. The only way to resolve that enigma is to open up the possibility that we are actually going back in time to a different dimension," Aki offered, the Asian woman having gone completely Zen in her relaxed posture and speech pattern.

"I feel a headache coming on," the First Officer said knowing that this was not going to be easy, whatever direction this discussion would go.

"Remember my description of time? The multiple parallel lines with bridges linking them to one another? Just imagine another set of lines, heading the same way but these ones perpendicular to the first set. Those would be the different dimensions. Since we have attached the temporal device to our own dimensional jump drive, it could be possible that we are trading place with a single other BASTET in a temporal dimension so close to the one we are in now that we cannot tell the difference." Mitshiba said, the sound of her own words making her smile, the explanation she gave making things clearer in her mind.

"Like two people on a seesaw?" Commander Valentine suggested in an effort to understand where this was going.

"Not really but I can try to use that to show you," Aki continued.  "Only one person can be at the highest point at any given time, leaving the other to be at the lowest point.  As much as either one may want to go elsewhere, both are locked on that seesaw, the most they can do being to trade place from the highest to the lowest point and back."

"How do we get off this seesaw?"

"We believe that we are currently stuck in *time*, but what if we were actually stuck in *space*, or more specifically in *dimensional space*.  All of our efforts have been focussed on the temporal device instead of the dimensional jump drive.  We have been trying to jump up from the seesaw instead of jumping to the side," the CSciO explained, her last line having brought their problem down to the simplest possible visualization.

"Main Engineering to Bridge, we might have come up with an idea.  Stand by to initiate a dimensional jump," Commander Valentine said after having tapped her comm badge.

=/\= Destination? =/\= the Captain inquired right away.

"The furthest possible dimension we can reach," Aki answered. "We need to sever any temporal or dimensional links to this point in the fabric of space-time. Once we do this, I believe we will be able to travel back in time and return to this dimension, of course making sure that we do not run into ourselves in the process."

=/\= Anything that saves us from looking at that giant gray skinned beast will be very welcomed, =/\= Commander Janeel said, hope very clear and present in her words.

"Let's do this," Sarena said as she moved back to the control console she had been working on for the last few hours.

"We will need to open the dimensional vortex inside our shields to insure that we do not break the temporal seal," Aki further explained.

"In other words this is going to be a real bumpy ride.  Bridge did you hear that?" Sarena asked.

=/\= Loud and clear. We will bolster up the structural integrity field to max. =/\=

"Captain, we are going to need all of the power we can create, suggest we take the propulsion system offline and diver the warp core energy directly to the dimensional jump drive."

=/\= Is that safe? =/\= Ensign Lopez was heard asking.

=/\= It's not like we are going anywhere at this point, =/\= the Captain added.

After a few seconds during which the required changes had been made, Commander Valentine called out her report. "Warp core energy rapidly increasing. Equivalent energy output at warp 6... warp 6.5."

"To create a dimensional bias inside the shields and maintain the temporal device operational, we will need more power than that. We might have to push the engines to warp 8.5 or higher."

=/\= Can we try to reach another dimension without blowing ourselves there in pieces? =/\= Janeel begged from the bridge.

"Pushing the engines to max," Commander Valentine said as the BASTET began to shake. In just a few seconds the entire ship had been rocking as if they had found their way to the dead center of a 9.0 earthquake.

=/\= We won't be able to hold this much longer, =/\= the Captain announced prompting those in Main Engineering to act quickly.

"Diverting all available power to the Dimensional Jump Drive. Critical energy output in 15 seconds."

///^\\\
Setting: SPACE
Stardate: 31227.1740

For a moment the BASTET had appeared as if it had been twisted like an old rag into a shape that appeared abstract at best, then, a split second later where the ship had been only empty space remained.

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M02-P080: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 29 - 1740 ("Grieving")
-=-=-
"Grieving"
[Previous post: "Getting Loopy"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1740

As a Counselor Adriana had been trained in various methods to help others deal with their grieving, everyone having a different approach on death.  Death was a natural progression of life; an inescapable outcome of a linear existence; a force of nature that needed to be studied and pushed back; an evil that took from you the most precious of gift. Whatever belief one may have had, death played a specific role, that the CNS understood but still she found having to deal with the same death over and over again unbearable.

She could have just walked off the bridge and distance herself from the sound of Shutaar's neck being effortlessly crushed or the image of the J'Den's lifeless body being dropped by the Masters, but she could not. As a member of the senior staff of the BASTET she had to be strong and ready to assist others should they require it, this despite her own discomfort.

"Just keep telling yourself that she is already dead," Amanda said, the image of the CNS' twin sister trying to ease the pain that visibly grew with each time a new loop came to an end.  "You are not watching or hearing her die anew. Whatever happens she is already dead."

"Captain," Adriana said taking a deep breath to focus all of her energy and thoughts on the woman sitting in the central chair and not the view screen. "Do you think we will be able to save Shutaar?  I know that things were not as smooth as they could have been, but she always acted in her people's best interest as she saw them to be. Yes this may have put her at odds with Lenaas, but that does not make her life any less important."

"I understand and even share your feelings," Captain Iverson said in return.  "We will do our best to save not only Shutaar but all of the J'Den that gave their lives in trying to stop the Masters from returning to this dimension.  In a way I feel that we are responsible. The problem is that we have no way to do anything at this point in time," the Captain said realizing only after the fact the double meaning of her chosen words.

"As much as you may not like to hear this," Amanda continued, her opinion only able to be heard by the twin sister, "This is on your side. The rest of the universe is going through the same few minutes while you and the rest of the ship are using that time to find a solution that will solve everything.  You just have to be patient and have confidence."

Adriana forced a weak smile on her lips, the words of her Captain and those of her sister having given her back some of the strength she had lost over the last several time loops.

[/\] Surrender the device and you all live. [/\]

The words of the Masters had been the same each and every time, and the CNS knew what was to come next. The Captain would give a reply but no matter what her words would be the next sound to fill the room would be the same.

She did her best to block it all out, but despite knowing exactly when it would come and how it would be Adriana still felt her gut twist and knot as the sound of the crushing neck was heard over the comm channel.

"Maybe we could disable our communication system," the CNS suggested as she did her best to hold back tears of sorrow, "or at the very least disable to audio."

As morbid as it might have been, the threat from the MAsters and the rapid execution of the J'Den woman had been a perfect way to insure that the time loop had been proceeding without any alterations. That said tough, the Captain did see a certain advantage to reducing the emotional impact on themselves by silencing the communication.

"I will have the computer record the audio, that way we can play it back if we notice any changes in upcoming transmission," Commander Janeel said, the repeated scene having affected hr as well.

"Thank you Counselor," the Captain offered as if the suggestion had been meant to help everyone and not just herself.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P079: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 29 - 1740 ("Getting Loopy")
=-=
"Getting Loopy"
[previous post was "Out of Time" by the brilliant Karen]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1740

At first it had seemed strange as no one had been certain what had been happening.  After a few more times, Captain Iverson, Ensign Lopez and the ILO / Mission Specialist had figured out that they had been caught in some sort of time-loop.  Although this meant that they would avoid, for the time being, the attack of the Masters, it did mean that they had to witness Shutaar's denise over and over again.

"Well, at least we now know that they can override our communication system," Janeel stated after the Captain had refused to acknowledge the Master's hail leading to the ruthless alien to force his likeness to appear on the BASTET's main view screen.  Not immediately answering his hail had proven to only hasten the horrific death of the J'Den woman which had been seen by all present on the command deck.

"Is there anything we can do?" the Captain asked with hope having rapidly grown tired of reliving the same few minutes.

=/\= We have managed to lock the device in some sort of loop which is reflecting off our shields, =/\= the ExO explained.  =/\= Although time is being reset outside of our shield parameter we are able to continue without being affected.  This should give us the time we need to bring the necessary modifications to the device and our systems. =/\=

"What if we tried to move the ship?" Lopez asked, thinking that the more distance between them and the Masters, the better everyone would be, not to mention that it might save them from witnessing Shutaar's death one more time.

=/\= Unfortunately it won't be that easy, =/\= the CSciO offered in reply.  =/\= Whatever this device has done, the effect has us locked in place.  Our shields and the outer edge of this temporal effect have become one and the same.  The only way for us to be able to move would be to find a way to increase the area our shields cover.  Even if we could figure out how to do this we would still only be able to move within that space. =/\=  Mitshiba could have offered another option, but since it involved turning the device off and letting the BASTET return to normal temporal space and be at the mercy of the Masters, the Japanese woman kept silent.

"We should also take into consideration that the Masters' vessel could be affected if it came in contact with our extended shields, and that would likely not turn out well for any of us," the ILO / Mission Specialist added.  "We are being hailed by the Masters, again."

Captain Iverson debated for an instant about how to proceed. Either way it seemed that nothing could be done to save Shutaar, the only question was how to go about the next few seconds before the temporal loop would reset.  "On screen," Selene ordered which caused the ship's Counselor to immediately turn her eyes away.

[/\] Surrender the device and you all live, [/\] he said once again, the helpless woman appearing on the screen only seconds later.

"We will not," the Captain defied, this time not having bothered to stand from her chair.

[/\] Then you will all die, [/\] the gray skinned giant said, his palpable anger instantly transferred into his hand to crush the woman's fragile neck without any effort.  The sound that followed filled the bridge of the BASTET and caused the Counselor to wince in pain as if it had been her own neck being so brutally reduced to dust.

A few seconds passed in silence, each member of the bridge crew doing their best to deal with the sights and sounds they had been exposed to once more.

"And there they go," Janeel reported, the sensors showing the Masters' vessel back to its starting point in this temporal loop.

"Bridge to Engineering, what's our status?" the Captain asked after opening a comm channel.

=/\= What! Not again? Wait, you said *our*, =/\= Commander Valentine replied, confused and fearful that the loop had somehow included the bridge of the BASTET.  =/\= No funny. =/\=

"I was not trying to be," Selene pointed out matter of factly.

=/\= Sorry, =/\= Sarena offered, =/\= I think this temporal loop is starting to play with my mind and nerves. =/\=

"Even more of a reason to find a way to get out of this situation," the ILO / Mission Specialist said, she too having begun to feel the effects of this repeating time. Although time seemed to flow normally inside the BASTET, the fact that everything else around them was stuck in this loop had made things complicated.

=/\= Give us some time, =/\= Mitshiba added not realising the irony of her statement.

"I think we all have enough time as is," Ensign Lopez pointed out with disappointment knowing that in the next minute of so she would once again have to deal with the cruel execution of the J'Den leader.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P078: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 29 - 1740 ("Out of Time")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Out of Time"
[previous post (Frazzled Nerves)]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS BASTET, Main Engineering
Stardate: 31227.1740

=/\= Bridge to Engineering, what's your status? =/\=

"Our status is that this blasted thing isn't working," Commander Valentine growled in overflowing frustration. "We have finally got it to accept the power flow but nothing is happening.  Plus, it might be nice if you didn't call done every 30 seconds with a deadline or a request for an update."

=/\= 30 seconds? =/\= Captain Iverson inquired. =/\= My last call to you was 10 minutes ago, give or take those 30 seconds. =/\=

"Bridge stand by," Sarena said as she closed the comm channel and quickly looked at the CSciO who appeared just as puzzled.  "Could the device be working?"

"If is it," Lieutenant Mitshiba said in disgust, "it's working in the wrong way.  We experienced what felt like 30 seconds down here while the bridge and the rest of the universe had 10 minutes.  It might explain why things have not been working well on our end, time having slowed down for us."

"This is not good at all," the Executive Officer pointed out.  "We need to reverse whatever this thing is doing and make it affect the entire ship."

"I can't even begin to guess as to how this thing was put together, let alone figure out how to completely reverse what it's doing and have this new effect channeled to affect the BASTET," the CSciO grudgingly stated, now wondering just how long they had actually been working on the device.

"At this point I don't think we have more to lose," Sarena explained.  "Whatever you try, whatever happens can't make our current situation any worse."

"Alright," Misaki sighed as she gave the controls and wires one last look before shifting a few things around.

A burst of light engulfed the device along with the two officer that had been working on it leaving them to wonder what had happened.

=/\= Bridge to Engineering, what's your status? =/\=

"Our status is that this blasted thing isn't working," Commander Valentine replied then stopped having a sense of deja vue. "Stand by," the Executive Officer added before closing the comm channel and shifting her attention onto the CSciO. "What happened?"

"Some sort of tachyon burst likely caused by the emitters having been overloaded which caused us to go back in time a few seconds," Mitshiba theorised as she looked at the controls and wires she had played with before the burst of light occurred.

"Well, that was an improvement," the Executive Officer said, hope having returned to her voice.  "Can we do that again but increase the amount of time?"

"I'm not even sure how I did it the first time," the CSciO explained.

"We are running out of time again, so whatever it was that you did, do it again."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1740

The Captain drew in a long deep breath, "Bridge to Engineering, what's our status?"

=/\= Our status is that this blasted thing isn't working, =/\= the Executive Officer replied then a few seconds later added several colorful Klingon expressions. =/\= Stand by. =/\=

"What was that all about?" Captain Iverson wondered out loud, never having expected the hear their First Officer speak in such a manner regardless of what the situation might have been.

"Stress?" Ensign Lopez suggested with a shrug, she too not having ever imagined the second in command to give in to such a primal reaction.

Whatever her reason was, we are out of time," Commander Janeel stated.  "The Masters' fleet is here, and they are hailing us," the ILO announced in shock, not having expected them to attempt any sort of communication.

"On screen," Iverson ordered as she stood from her chair, not wanting to present a weak presence against an obviously stronger opponent.

[/\] Surrender the device and you all live, [/\] the imposing gray skinned alien said, obviously the Masters not having been one for pleasantries or even basic politeness.  To insure that his intentions had been clear and beyond any misunderstandings, the alien brought Shutaar into view, his large hand easily wrapping around the neck of the J'Den woman.

Fear could be seen in her eyes, but Captain Iverson could also see a refusal to give in, to forego all that her people had gained through their freedom from the Masters.  As any other living being, Shutaar had not wanted to die, but the price for her survival had simply been too high, and Selene understood that.

"Can we discuss terms," the Captain offered trying to buy as much time as possible hoping that her Executive Officer and Chief Science Officer would find a way to get the temporal device to work.

The sound of bones instantly being reduced into dust filled the channel as the Masters' hand clamped around Shutaar's neck.  The life drained from her eyes in mere seconds before he limp body was unceremoniously abandoned to the artificial gravity of the lead ship she had been brought on board.

"No!!!" Adriana said in response to what they all had seen, the woman and leader of the J'Den not having deserved to see her life end this way, and her generations worth of memories lost forever.

[/\] Surrender the device of you are next. [/\] the Masters said just as a bright burst of light filled the bridge of the BASTET.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Setting: USS BASTET, Main Engineering
Stardate: 31227.1740

=/\= Bridge to Engineering, what's your status? =/\= the Captain inquired before her voice trailed off for a bit.  =/\= Didn't I already ask that? =/\=

"Our status is that this blasted thing isn't working quite the way we need it to but we are getting closer," the Executive Officer replied. "Stand by."

"How many more times do we need to do this?" Mitshiba asked as she began to feel the stress of this temporal loophole they had created.

"As many times as it takes us to get it right," Sarena replied.  "Trying having the emitters reflect their signal off the shields or better yet have it feed the energy directly into the shield matrix. Maybe that will give us more than the few seconds we have been playing with for how ever long we have been playing 'out of time'."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M02-P077: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 29 - 1735 ("Frazzled Nerves")
-=-=-
"Frazzled Nerves"
[Previous post: "Time's Up"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1735

She remembered being impressed by the looks and size of the J'Den ships. Although not an expert in starship designs and capabilities, the alien vessels had appeared to be a match for anything Starfleet had, maybe even a little more.  The only offsetting point that Adriana could see was that there had been a lot fewer of them, but given the state of the race this had made perfect sense. Fewer people in total would equal to them having fewer ships, and their need to protect themselves had logically meant that the ships had been well equipped for combat.  All of that only made the report from the First Officer that much more troubling. The Masters had cut through the blockade without any problems and now they were rushing in at full speed for the BASTET.

"You're the Counselor sis," Amanda said in a stern manner, the illusionary image of the twin having taken position directly in front of the woman who had been staring mindlessly at the main view screen. "You need to keep your wits about you.  Hell, at this point you all need to."

Adriana's heart was racing as she fought off the urge to scream and run, but where would she run to?  The BASTET was a single ship that had found its way to stand alone against an entire fleet of conquering aliens. The Masters had proven themselves to be more than a formidable force, one that the CNS strongly doubted held mercy in any regards.  As their name implied, they liked to be in control and by the way things had evolved it looked as if the BASTET and it crew had been the only thing standing in the way of their complete mastery over space and time.

"Keep it together sis," Amanda said seeing her sister slowly but gradually losing control.  The prospect of meeting her end at the hands of the Masters had not been something the CNS had been overly fond of.  "Breathe," the twin demanded of Adriana who appeared to be on the very edge of a complete emotional meltdown.

"Masters' fleet will be upon us in 10 minutes," the First Officer announced, her subdued voice not softening the blow of the implications of her words.

"Really!" Adriana bellowed as she turned to glare at the ExO, "You are going to start a countdown to what will most likely be our deaths?  Don't we have anything better to do?"

"COUNSELOR!" the Captain snapped back, sending an even more menacing glare in the Ensign's direction.

"Well done sis," the image of the twin sighed in exasperation, "that's keeping your cool under pressure. How the heck did you ever make it through the Academy with nerves like that?"

Adriana lowered her head and breathed as her sister had suggested before the outburst.  "Please forgive me Captain, Commander," the Counselor shamefully begged, her nerves and fear having jumped beyond her ability to control for that split second.

"We are all scared," Captain Iverson gently explained, "but as long as there is life on board this ship, there is hope." The woman's voice had been kind and understanding while still holding a fair amount of strength and resolve.  Whatever the odds might have been, the CO of the BASTET had not been ready to throw in the towel, not that Adriana figured the woman ever would regardless of the situation.

"Yes Captain," the CNS nodded as she offered a smile of gratitude for not having been racked over the coals for her outburst.  "Of course Captain, thank you."

"Now, that said," the Captain said as she drew in a long deep breath, "Bridge to Engineering, what's our status?"

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P076: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 29 - 1725 ("Time's Up")
=-=
"Time's Up"
[previous post was "Time the Harsh Master" by the always eager Karen]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1725

The temporal device had been brought on board from the RAMAN and was being integrated into the defensive and dimensional propulsion systems of the BASTET by Commander Valentine and Lieutenant Mitshiba. That alone would have been difficult enough but time had been against them in more ways than one.

The Masters, a race of transdimensional conquerors had in a distant past gained control of the temporal device thanks to the J'Den's attempt to reclaim their home world. Thanks to the newly acquired tech, the Masters had expanded their influence through not only dimensional space but time itself.  Now they had come back from this improved future to this point in space and time to insure that their new glorious empire remained as it had become.

"Long-range sensors are picking several rapidly approaching vessels, the J'Den have sent some of their ships to intercept but I doubt they will be all that effective," the ILO / Mission Specialist reported.  "They are outnumbered 20 to 1."

"The Masters are not leaving anything to chance," Captain Iverson sadly noted.  "How are we doing with he shield modifications?"

"Commander Valentine is experiencing certain difficulties with the system's integration," Janeel replied.  "I am not sure that she will be able to set up a tachyon-base cloaking field around the ship to hide us from the Masters' sensors."

"They are obviously faster than we are and greatly outnumber us," the Captain pointed out hoping that saying this for everyone to hear would help them figure out a way to avoid a confrontation they knew they would not be able to win.  "Hiding in the asteroid field would only buy us a few seconds at best.  We need to find a way to give Valentine and Mitshiba more time."

"Unfortunately we can't go to warp and add distance between them and us as this would severely slow down their work," Janeel confirmed once again, this having been established the first time they had thought of that particular tactic.  Using the Dimensional Jump Drive had also been rendered a non-option as the drive had been taken off-line to avoid complications during the system's integration.  Captain Iverson had also dismissed that possibility from the start for fear that the Master's might stumble onto a dimension that they had yet to conquer, such has the BASTET's point of origin.

"We need more time," Selene softly growled, their options having been more than limited at best.

It seemed to always come back to that -- time.  They needed to find more of *it* to be able to travel through *it* and undo the changes that had been done to *it*, all of that before the Masters destroyed the device and the BASTET to forever claim dominion over *it*.

"At their current speed the Masters will overtake our position in about 20 minutes, maybe a little more depending on how much of a fight the J'Den offer," the ILO / Mission specialist reported as she kept a very close eye on the data provided by the long-range sensors.

"The future Lenaas clearly said that we could not destroy the device, why?" the Ensign Lopez asked out loud trying to figure out the reasoning that had negated their simplest and fastest means to resolve this issue.

"Temporal mechanics," the Captain huffed.  "The Masters already have the device in their past, so destroying it now in their future would not change anything. On the other hand, destroying the device would make it impossible for us to travel back in time and attempt to undo the damage that was caused to the timeline.  As far as the Masters are concerned, they want both us and that device destroyed thus erasing any threat we might pose to their dominance over time and space."

"Yea," Adriana gulped. "Destroying the device is not an option."

"Captain," Janeel called out with a sense of urgency, "all of the J'Den vessels that had been sent to intercept have been destroyed.  The Masters will be on top of us in 15 minutes."

"Bridge to Main Engineering, you have 10 minutes to get that temporal device working or we are all dead," Iverson stated after having slammed the control panel to her right to open a comm channel.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P075: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 29 - 1615 ("Time the Harsh Master")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Time the Harsh Master"
[previous post (Solid Time)]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS BASTET, Main Engineering
Stardate: 31227.1615

The device had been successfully retrieved from the RAMAN and sat on the floor next to the Chief Science Officer and Executive Officer, still very much unattached to the Dimensional Jump Drive or any other of the ship's systems.

"It may look like Federation tech, at least in some ways, but there is nothing closely alike to what we have here," Mitshiba said in absolute frustration.  "The sensor scans taken by Commander Janeel were nowhere close to giving us an accurate take on this thing."

"At least we know that the device works," Sarena countered as she continued to try and find a way to incorporate the alien contraption into their own system.  "There was no way for us to know that the temporal field surrounding this device would actually change the sensor readings."

"It also accounts for why it was so difficult to beam it on board," Misaki added, the CSciO also working as fast as she could to find a way to power the device using their own energy source.  "The temporal field generated by this thing was constantly changing, and in ways that I still can't make heads or tails of.  I will be honest and say that I'm not even sure that this thing will work as we expect it to, that is *if* we can actually plug it in and feed it power."

"The fact that the Masters are here to get this device is proof enough that it does work," the Executive Officer pointed out.  "That it doesn't work in the way we expected to or that it does work now does not change the fact that this device is at the center of what is happening. This means that we have to go everything in our power to keep it out of play until such time as we can us it to stop the Masters."

"I understand that," Mitshiba agreed as another change was made to the phase discrimination unit was tested and failed," but it may not be that easy, not that anything is easy when dealing with time.  The future Lenaas who warned us said that they had used the dive *multiple times* in their efforts to reclaim their homeworld.  Each attempt created a new timeline, and in each of these timelines countless possibilities came to be.  Or being able to stop the Masters once may not be enough."  The CSciO paused for an instant and took in a deep breath.  "We are going under the assumption that the Masters are trying to insure they get the device to secure the timeline in which they have kept control of the J'Den and any other races they had enslaved at that time, but what if they want to insure their presence in *all* timelines?"

"I'm not sure I'm following," the Executive Officer reluctantly admitted. Whatever Misaki had been trying to say had certainly come across as being worst than anything else Sarena had been thinking.

"Do not imagine time as a *single* line able to be split but rather as an endless set of lines one next to the other with countless bridges linking one line to its next closest neighbors.  Us going back in time to a location on our timeline will not affect the others, and if the Masters have merged the temporal device to their transdimensional traveling equipment as we are trying to do, they could have easily set themselves as the dominant force in multiple timelines, increasing that number with each passing second."

"So what you are saying is that even if we manage to make this work, we might have to stop the Masters multiple times?" the Executive Officer asked not at all liking the way this was going.

"We might," Mitshiba nodded just as the device showed signs of having accepted the energy feed, even if only partially.

"One ship against time itself," Sarena sarcastically chuckled as she looked at the slowly blinking lights that had appeared on the device.  "Sounds like we have our work cut out for us.  Continue working on that phase discrimination unit then you can help me plug this thing into the DJD."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M02-P074: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 29 - 1540 ("Solid Time")
=-=
"Solid Time"
[previous post was "Time to Get Moving" by the friendly Dawn]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1540

Maybe she had been too harsh on Lieutenant Mitshiba, after all they were all in the same situation trying to do their best against an opponent that could neither be stopped or delayed, at least to her own understanding of time.  Yes it was true that the ILO  Mission Specialist had the most basic understanding of temporal mechanics, and she had never been shy to admit to this.  Then again never before had she been in a position where an alien force possessing time traveling capabilities had threatened everything throughout all of spacetime.

To the ILO / Mission Specialist time had been something simple, something measurable, something that alas they always seemed to be in short supply of.  Trying to see this situation in any other way only served to make her head spin and Janeel could not afford to be at anything other than her best.  For her time had not been a variable but rather a specific measurement.

The dimensional / temporal distortion that had been discovered by the J'Den had been 3 hours away at maximum speed. If one was to give the Masters the benefit of the doubt in regards to their faster-than-light traveling capabilities, the time separating the conquering race and the crashed vessel could be cut by half.  This meant that at the pessimist end of the spectrum the crew of the BASTET roughly had one and a half hours to get the device from the RAMAN and successfully integrate it into their system.

No unknown variable or impossible temporal equation needed to be in play. They needed to get everything done inside that time frame to consider the odds in their favor.

With the male survivors of the RAMAN already on board their old ship, the ILO / Mission Specialist had calculated on them reaching their target in just under 5 minutes.  If for one reason or another they were to be delayed, Janeel could triple that time.  Even with the time to their destination changed, Janeel had still counted on the device to be secured and beamed on board the BASTET inside of a 30 minute window.  This meant that at the worst case scenario, as devised by the Commander, the ExO and CSciO would have just about an hour to complete their integration of the device.

One hour. Sixty minutes. That had been the number Janeel had been working with. Again no equation taking into account countless unknown variables and theories about cause and effect or which would happen first in certain situations.  The away team had at best 30 minutes to retrieve the device and the crew would have a minimum of one hour to make it work.  So why had everyone been so bent on trying to assign any other set of numbers?

"Commander," Captain Iverson said as she came to stand next to the ILO / Mission Specialist.  "Lenaas had just confirmed that the dimensional rift was created by the Masters and that they have started to enter."

"As expected the attention of the J'Den is entirely focussed on the Master's return," Janeel stated.  "Sensors are showing nothing standing in the way of the away team.  The computer interlinks should be in place and the device ready to be beamed aboard in a few minutes."

"Good," the Captain acknowledged with clear reservation. "let's hope that it will be enough.  Bridge to Main Engineering."

=/\= Go ahead Captain, =/\= the hurried voice of the First Officer replied.

"Lenaas has confirmed that it is the Masters who opened the dimensional / temporal rift," the CO reported without allowing her emotions to show. "This is of course keeping the J'Den busy and more than a little on the panic side of things.  Commander Janeel believes that we will have the device on board in a few minutes. Will you be ready?"

=/\= Not in a few minutes, =/\= the ExO confirmed to everyone great chagrin.  =/\= We are working as fast as we can but it will take time to calibrate all of these blasted systems to work together without causing us to join the RAMAN on the surface of that asteroid. =/\=

"Understood Commander," the Captain acknowledged.  "Do your best to make this take the least possible time.  As soon as the device is securely on board the BASTET we will see if we can do something to give you a little more time.  Bridge out."

"A little more time?" Janeel echoed trying to imagine what Captain Iverson had in mind.  "If the Masters are anywhere as powerful as the J'Den had described them to be, and if they have indeed come from a time ahead of ours, it is very likely that we will be faced with an opponent possessing vastly superior technology."

"I thought you didn't understand temporal mechanics?" Selene teased, the smile on her lisp having lasted but a fraction of a second.

"I may not be able to figure out all of the details involved in tampering with time, but I do understand that the Masters have come from a future to insure that they keep control of this device," the ILO / Mission Specialist stated in all seriousness.  "What I do understand is the drive of any individual or race to keep whatever advantage they may have. That was the thinking behind the J'Den and their survival technique and it will be what makes the Master rush us with everything they have and as fast as they can.  Time is as much against them as it is against us."

"Then let's see if we can find a way to stack the odds more in our favor, even if it is by only a few seconds. Shall we?"

Still unsure as to what they could possibly do to achieve the objective set their captain Iverson, Janeel agreed. At least they were dealing with time as a solid entity that could be moved to one side or another, even if only ever so slightly.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P073: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 29 - 1530 ("Time to Get Moving")
"Time to Get Moving"
Previous post: "An Untimely Twist"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Main Engineering
Stardate: 31227.1530

They knew very little about the Masters, but one things had been beyond a doubt, they needed to be feared.  The J'Den feared them more than any other threats because of what they had done over centuries of enslavement. The crew of the BASTET had learned to fear them for what they might be able to do, now more than ever.

Somehow the race of transdimensional conquerors had been made aware of a plan to change the past that had seen them gain the means to travel through time after that timeline had itself been altered.  In this new temporal reality the Masters had become an even more dangerous force, one that had extended their influence not only to other dimensions but through time as well.

Everything seemed to focus on the device currently on board the USS RAMAN, a mismatched piece of equipment had only been capable of compressing time in a very restricted space. Yet that machine stood in the middle of a temporal conflict that threatened to engulf the entirety of of the universe.

"We need to set up some sort of power transfer conduit to the device," the First officer ordered as she removed one of the panels beneath an engineering control station near the Dimensional Jump Drive.

"We need to instal in a phase discrimination unit first," Mitshiba pointed out in somewhat of a panic.  "We have done no tests on the power systems of the RAMAN as compared to ours.  We have to keep in mind that although the ship is of Federation design, it is from an alternate dimension, one that is not even this one.  We have no way of knowing the exact power fluctuation frequency or how being in this dimension has and is still affecting it.  If we rush into this without taking the proper precautions this idea to restore the timeline will end even before it starts."

"Fine," Commander Valentine continued as she rushed from one station to the next.  "Set up a phase discrimination unit than help me calibrate the power transfer conduit.  We are going to have a single chance at this and we better make sure that it works."

=/\= Bridge to Main Engineering, the away team is almost ready to beam to the RAMAN and bring the device back.  How are you doing down there? =/\= Commander Janeel asked over the comm system.

"One would think that we would have all the time in the world when dealing with a temporal device," the CSciO huffed, finding the urgency of the situation somewhat ironic.

=/\= The function of the device has nothing to do with the time frame we are working with, =/\= the ILO pointed out clearly annoyed by the statement made by Mitshiba.

"Commander, if you would like I could give you a crash course on finer points of temporal mechanics which would explain the full sarcastic range of my earlier comment," Aki said having allowed her own frustrations to seap into her words.  "My apologies Commander, my words were ill chosen."

=/\= I understand that I dislike anything to do with temporal shifts and travels, =/\= the ILO admitted.  =/\= That is why I leave those finer points to the scientific community to deal with, all I can do at this time is work on what restrictive schedule I see we have.  If you can find a way to give us more time, I will gladly accept it, otherwise please proceed with the highest possible haste on this matter. =/\=

"You know, if we *had* more time, I would find this highly amusing," Sarena admitted in kind as soon as the communications channel had been closed, "I never expected to see or hear our ILO so emotional, it is rather refreshing."

"You seem to be handling this entire situation rather well Commander," Aki commented as she continued to work on the phase discrimination unit.

"I just don't have the time to lose my head right now," the ExO quickly chuckled, te pun having very much so intended.

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M02-P072: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 29 - 1500 ("An Untimely Twist")
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"An Untimely Twist"
[previous post (Questions and Actions)]
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Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1500

"Counsellor," Captain Iverson greeted Enign Lopez as she returned to the bridge. "The meeting with Lenaas went well I presume?"

"Yes, Captain," Adriana replied a little out of breath.  "Have the men been sent down to the RAMAN to instal the computer interlinks?"

"Not yet. Is there a problem?"

"We may have a lot less time to prepare than we had expected," Adriana replied.  "Lenaas came to warn me of a potential problem.  Shutaar received an emergency communication from one of their ships patrolling another sector of this dimension and apparently they have pickup what they believe is signs of the Master's return."

"That is in no way a good thing," Commander Valentine said with great concern.  "We know very little about that race, but what we have been able to learn from the J'Den does not paint them as being a force to be confronted without great preparation."

"I think the problem goes deeper than that," Adriana said, handing over a PADD to Lieutenant Mitshiba.

"What's this?" Misaki asked without looking at the device's content.

"Sensor readings that were part of the transmission to Shutaar," the CNS explained.  "I need a second opinion, one based on more scientific foundations than mine, but I can say this, Lenaas was truly scared, bordering on terrified when she handed me the data.  At first I thought that it was because she was going against Shutaar's wishes or knowledge, but it soon became evident that it was the content that scared her."

With that additional information in hand, Misaki began to review the information that she had received.  "All of the sensor data seems to point to what would be expected from a trans-dimensional rift.  All of the readings show an increased bias in the core fabric of spacetime, and since we know that the Masters are from another dimension I don't see what is so frightening about... woah!"

"Woah?" Captain Iverson repeated not at all having expected such a descriptive to come from her CSciO at that particular time.

"The initial sensor readings were straight forward, showing a bias in the fabric of spacetime, but the readings suddenly changed to show some sort of temporal variant," Mitshiba explained not exactly certain as to what she was seeing and reporting.

"Are you saying that the sensors of the J'Den ship picked up a Master's vessel coming from not only another dimension but fro another time?" Commander Janeel questioned, the possibilities of that theories having been more than enough to scare Lenaas and anyone else made aware of this.

"I can't be sure, the reading are like nothing I have ever seen.  The Federation has accumulated data on temporal anomalies and travel as well as shifts from one dimension to another, but never have we had to deal with a temporal/dimensional event," the CSciO answered unable to draw her attention away from the information being displayed on the PADD.

"Best guess Lieutenant," the Captain ordered. "We do not have the luxury of time here if this is in fact what we are looking at."

"If I had been given this information separately I would have concluded that one set of data pointed to a dimensional rift being opened. The other data seems to clearly indicate some sort of temporal distortion," Misaki said as she tried her best to come up with an answer that would be founded in science and not in emotions and fear.  "Since the readings are reported to be originating from the exact same area of space, there is only one safe conclusion to accept."

"We weren't the only ones to get a warning from the future," Adriana said as she bit her lower lip, he statement she had just made having repercussions that went far beyond what anyone had been ready to entertain at this point.

"We need to come up with a plan of action," the Captain ordered not wanting to simply stand by while the Masters took control of this dimension, knowing that their home dimension would likely not be far behind on the race's conquest list.

"What are we suppose to do?" the CNS demanded out of fearful frustration.  "We are one ship and from what we have been told by the J'Den the first time the Masters came to this dimension they had hundreds of ships."

"If the Masters have indeed been given some sort of temporal warning along the lines we received, their target will be the device currently on board the RAMAN," Janeel pointed out. "If the J'Den are truly unaware of the reasons why the Masters are returning, this leaves us with only one possible course of action.  With the J'Den's attention focussed on the sector of space from which these sensor readings came from, we will have a clear shot at taking the device before the Master's get here."

"What exactly do you suggest we do with it once we bright it on board?" Misaki demanded, fearing the answer that she might receive.

"We will have to take the device out of the Master's reach," the Captain confirmed, having understood what the ILO's plan had been.  "Hopefully can can find a way to end this problem before it actually starts," Selene added only realizing after the fact the temporal reference she had made.

"No time like the present," Sarena teased in return.  "Let's get the crew of the RAMAN down there ASAP. Commander Janeel, you will supervise the mission from up here, I will head down to Main Engineering with Lieutenant Mitshiba to start working on some way to incorporate the device into our Dimensional Jump Drive.  The way I see it, we are now in a battle against time itself and we far from avoid a head lead.

"Why is it that things are never easy?" Adriana sighed heavily.

"You are on board a Federation vessel capable of travelling between dimensions, which was sent to said other dimension to search for a vessel that had been destroyed in our reality, this because we received a trans-dimensional message targeted specifically at us. Along the way we encountered a race that has managed to remain alive by downloading its genetic code into volunteers from other races.  We later receive a warning from the future about the dangers of a device that we had cautioned them *not* to use so as to protect the timeline," the Captain pointed out in all seriousness."Now we may be faced with an unknown race having access to not only all dimensions but all of time within these dimensions. So please Counselor please tell when you had expected things to get easier?"

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Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M02-P071: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 29 - 1400 ("Questions and Actions")
-=-=-
"Questions and Actions"
[Previous post: "A Timely Discussion"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Corridor outside Guest Quarters
Stardate: 31227.1400

Adriana had followed Captain Iverson while the CO paid the survivors of the RAMAN a visit to ask for their help.  Although the CNS had not been given any official role to play, it had been understood that she would observe and report on anything she perceived as being a problem or anything else worth noting.

"Well, that was a lot easier than we could have expected," the Captain said with relief.

"Yes," Adriana concurred, "every one of them appeared more than happy to offer their help. It is easy to guess that their time with the J'Den was less than enjoyable leading to their not having any problems acting against what could be considered their race's interests."

"Based on what we have seen about the treatment of their own men, it is not a far stretch of the imagination to envision how they would treat males from other races who have refused or resisted becoming volunteers," the Captain said understanding the reason why things had been the way that they were without agreeing to it.

"When taking the time to understand where this behavior comes from, we all have to agree that it makes sense and that given the circumstances they were faced with, the race as a single unit trying to survive actually did very well for itself," the CNS added.

"Quit trying to impress your CO sis," Amanda sighed, the image of the missing twin sister having reappeared after an absence that the CNS had actually enjoyed in some way.  Interacting with the illusion of her sister had always placed the other sister's sanity in question, so it had been nice for Adriana to consider herself sane, if only for a short period of time.

"Every culture has its unique ways of dealing with issues and people," the Captain agreed, "and you are right, we spend far too much time judging instead of understanding.  EARTH and the Federation may work for us, but we know first hand that such a system does not work for everyone, and that is a fact that we still find difficult to accept to this day."

"Now that we have secured the help from the crew of the RAMAN, what is our next step?" the CNS asked wondering if her services would be required for what was to come.

"We need to check in with Lieutenant Mitshiba to confirm the status of the computer interlinks. Once that is done we can start planning the finer points of our mission.

=/\= Bridge to Counselor Lopez. =/\=

"Lopez here," Adriana replied to the unexpected call after tapping her comm badge.

=/\= Lenaas is asking permission to beam on board and speak with you. =/\=

"Captain?" the CNS deferred not wanting to give an answer that might go against their CO's wishes.

"I don't like the timing of this visit but if we say no it might only serve to raise suspicions, so meet with her and see what she wants.  I am sure that I do not need to remind you to be careful what to say to her. We have to keep our little plan a secret, even from her.  Obviously she will learn about it in time, but I suspect that in this case that later is better," the Captain said having stopped and turned to face the Counselor.

"Bridge, permission to come aboard granted. I will meet Lenaas in Transporter Room 2 and will personally escort her to my office where we will meet."

=/\= Very well. Transporter room 2 will be waiting for your arrival to initiate transport. Bridge out. =/\=

"Do be careful," Captain Iverson offered, giving the CNS a gentle supportive smile. 

-=-=-
Setting: USS BASTET, Transporter Room 2
Stardate: 31227.1415

As soon as the transport was completed the J'Den woman stepped off the platform and happily met Ensign Lopez.

"Thank you for seeing me. I was actually worried that something had happened since we have not seen you are your people on the RAMAN for a while," Lenaas explained.

"With a more complete understanding of your people and the effects of your males, it made sense for us to limit contact to avoid a wave of volunteers suddenly showing up at your door step," Adriana explained humorously.  "Now, why did you need to see me?"

"As a Counselor I thought you were the best person to speak to," Lenaas said as the two women exited the transporter room and casually made their way to the office of the CNS which was on the same deck.  "As you might have noticed, the J'Den are not big on talking and sharing our emotions."

"You know," Adriana laughed, "I don't think I had noticed that."

"Trying to make her feel more at ease with humor, really?  You can't keep a straight face on the best of days when you are trying to hide something.  Stay on task and mind your words," Amanda scolded her sister who as always had done her best to ignore the apparition that only she could see and hear.

"Nice try Counselor, but the reason that has brought me here is a serious one," Lenaas added, her entire posture having changed to reflect something much more than Adriana had expected.

"By all means," the CNS said inviting her guest to follow her at a slightly high walking pace.  "My office is right down this corridor, we can have a private conversation there and you can explain everything.  Hopefully I can help."

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P070: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 29 - 1300 ("A Timely Discussion")
"A Timely Discussion"
Previous post: "Another Time, Another Place"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Observation lounge
Stardate: 31227.1300

Planning a course of action that would have the device discovered by Commander Janeel be transported onto the BASTET had not been complicated, but trying to avoid making the same mistakes, mistakes that had not already happened had proven to be the real challenge.

"What about erasing the computer core of the RAMAN?" Commander Valentine suggested as the gathered officers brainstormed various ways to meet the task given to them by the 35 years older Lenaas.

"The RAMAN's computer is heavily damaged and thanks to the J'Den, the core is no longer a single unit," Aki reported, the holographic display in the middle of the table showing through various color codes just how fragmented the ship's computer core had becoming.  "There are parts of the computer all over the wreckage and although we can assume that the computer component closest to the device will be the one with the data, there is no way to make sure of this unless we physically tap into each component."

"I would highly discourage any course of action that would take us down to the RAMAN where we could run into any number of male J'Den," Commander Janeel strongly suggested, stating this from her own experience.

"We could always beam a small team down, attach a subspace interlink to the individual parts of the computer core and beam back out," Commander Valentine offered, offering a plan that would allow them access to the RAMAN fragmented computer while limiting their time on the crashed vessel.

"Not sure if it is because of the device or some sort of magnetic field generated by the asteroid, or even maybe both, but poi-point transports inside the inner sections of the RAMAN would be very dangerous.  Our sensors are already having a hard time focussing on anything in those sections of the ship," Aki contributed, the CSciO having done quite a bit of research on the ship as a whole.

"Looks like we are left with very few options as to how to act," the Captain said in a less than enthusiastic tone.

"If it had been easy for us to just get this done, I doubt that Lenass would have made such a huge production to let us know that this was our *last* chance to get it right," Ensign Lopez pointed out, sharing in the feelings of her Commanding Officer.

"We have to figure out a way to gain access to each and every part of the RAMAN';s computer and make it possible for us to get a transporter lock on the device to beam it to the BASTET, all of this while trying not to antagonise the J'Den," Captain Iverson listed as she shook her head.

"Don't forget us not making the same mistake that we did before, which we have not done yet," Janeel teased, closing her eyes as if trying to ward off the start of a migraine.

"This may sound a little nuts, but what if we asked for their help?" the CNS sheepishly suggested.

"It was made very clear that Shutaar would not listen to anything we had to say about the hazards of time traveling," the Captain explained.  "So I find it highly unlikely that she would be receptive to our plan to permanently take the means of accomplishing her goal away."

"Shutaar no," Adriana confirmed, "but what about Lenaas?  She was the one who came to us from the future, maybe she would be willing to help us now."

"For all we know letting her in on our plan is what causes us to fail," Sarena pointed out.

"For all we know *not* telling Lenass is what leads us to fail," Aki countered.

"At this point I say we launch a full volley of torpedoes into the mess and forget that all of this ever happened," Janeel sighed, her efforts to ward of the migraine having failed just as their work apparently had in the future, whatever decision they would take.

"We need to think outside the box," the CSciO added.  "If we take into account that we did this multiple times before, it is logical to assume that we went through variants of the normal routes each time and failed. We have to come up with a plan that we would never have otherwise considered."

"You sound like you already have a plan?" the CNS said, getting nods of approval from both the CO and ExO.

"What if we asked for the assistance of Commander Anderson and the rest of his crew?  They know the layout of the RAMAN better than anyone of us, not to mention that they were there when the core was fragmented.  As Starfleet Officers from another dimension we would never ask for their help, but what if that is the reason why we failed before?  As men who have been exposed to the J'Den, they know what to expect and how to go about moving unnoticed through the ship.  As crew members, they will know how to achieve our goals in the most effective manner possible."

Silence spread through the room as Aki's words were considered by the rest of the gathered officers.

"You are right," the Captain agreed, "I never would have considered that option.  Let's see if they are willing to help."

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M02-P069: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 29 - 1155 ("Another Time, Another Place")
=-=
"Another Time, Another Place"
[previous post was "A Vanishing Mystery" by the surprising Karen]
=-=

Setting: Unknown Location
Stardate: 31227.1155

"Doomed?"  The ILO / Mission Specialist repeated in stunned suspicion while she carefully studied the features of the J'Den woman standing in the beam of light before them.  Now that she had mentioned her name, certain similarities could be found, but if this was indeed 35 or so years in the future, time it seemed had been less than kind to her.

"Yes, doomed," Lenaas painfully confirmed. "You warned Shutaar and anyone else who would listen about the dangers but they still moved ahead with the project.  Even after the terra forming had been successfully started on Ju'Denaara, it was not enough."

"What are you talking about?" Captain Iverson questioned, the woman standing in the beam of light in front of them making little to no sense.

"Time travel," Lenaas specified appearing as if she had been on the edge of tears.  "The drive to get even with the Masters was too strong and only grew as our tests to travel back in time became more and more successful."

"We cannot interfere in the unfolding of the timeline," Mitshiba pointed out, as the CSciO she knew all too well the implications of tampering with the past, hence why the Temporal Prime Directive had been created and enforced throughout the Federation.

"I am not asking you to change your past or even your present. All I am doing is begging for you to help change my future, one that you may believe to not having any interest in but one if I want to be perfectly honest you had a very heavy hand in bringing about."

"How are we responsible for events that has not yet happened?" Janeel demanded sounding less than happy, the ILO / Mission Specialist had never been a fan of time travel or temporal mechanics, instead being a strong advocate of leaving any and all timelines as they were.

"The device you discovered on the RAMAN was far from functional but it worked well enough to make Shutaar continue with the project.  Your efforts Captain, that of discouraging any tampering of the timeline, only served to increase her desire to make the project work.  Instead of scaring Shutaar into abandoning her efforts, your words showed her the possibility, however slight, of success.  Despite you pointing out the tremendous odds and high price that we all might have to pay, she refused to listen."  A deeply felt sadness echoed through each and every word spoken by Lenaas making it clear that the J'Den and many others had lost a great deal over the 35 years that had yet to come for the crew of the BASTET.

"What would have us do?" Ensign Lopez asked leaving the Captain to be nothing more than a simple spectator to this exchange thus allowing her to not commit herself or her crew to the situation in any way, at least not without hearing more.

"The attention of my people needs to be on reclaiming our home world through terra forming, not through trying to change our past," Lenaas explained, her sadness having gradually morphed into desperate anger.  "We managed to travel back in time and discovered that changing events was not as easy as we had expected them to be.  So we were forced to try again, and again, and again, each time trying to correct errors from previous journeys.  Each time we did so though things went from bad to worse until the Masters finally took control of our time traveling technology.  Once they possessed the ability to travel back in time, there was no stopping them in this or any other dimension. In trying to save our world we doomed everyone."

"A time traveling trans-dimensional race bent on conquering anything they come across," Misaki gulped, recalling the dreadful facts about the Masters that she had learned over the last few weeks.

"Alright, you win," the Captain conceded having been made to understand the sheer scope of the situation.  "What do we have to do to make sure this never happens?"

"You will have to steal the device and erase any and all data that we had to insure that we never try to built anything like that ever again.  Destroying the device would only lead to an even worse future for both our people.  You must take the device and secure it on board your ship, that is the only way to save us all," Lenaas said as the beam of light around her began to fade returning the woman to the darkness from which she had emerged only a few moments ago.

=/\= The future of my people as well as that or every other races throughout the endless number of dimensions rest in your hands and your being able to successfully complete the task that I have given you.  This is the last time I can beg you -- do not fail. =/\=

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1200

"No pressure," Janeel said before realizing that she and the others who had been transported into the future had been safely returned to the present.

"No pressure?" Commander Valentine echoed, surprised yet very happy to see all of the missing officers back safe and sound.

"Looks like we have a new mission objective," the Captain explained with a sigh.  "One that might hold the future of not only this dimension but ours and all others in the balance."

"No pressure indeed," the First Officer quietly gasped looking forward to hearing a more detailed account of what had happened and what they would need to do in order to save the whole of the multiverse in the process.

"Captain," the CSciO began drawing the attention of their Commanding Officer onto her.  "Did you notice how perfectly certain she was when telling us as to what we needed to do?  As if this had not been the first time we had been given this task."

"Yes," Captain Iverson said in a perplexed manner.  "Leaves me to wonder how many times we have gone through this?"

"Gone through what?" The ILO / Mission Specialist queried, all of this talk about trying to stop something that had not happened and save everyone having been more than she cared for.

"She did say that this would be the last time," the Captain pointed out, "so we better get it right and not make the same mistakes we did before."

"What mistakes?" Janeel demanded out of frustration.  "We haven't done anything yet."

"No worries," Adriana mildly chuckled, "it's giving me a headache too."

"The beauty of temporal mechanics," Misaki added.  "When things happened before you actually take the steps to make them come to pass."

"Is it too late to volunteer?" the ILO / Mission Specialist demanded in a more serious tone than anyone had expected to hear from the woman.

"Not funny," the CNS softly snarled not having any desire to hear about anyone wanting to volunteer to become a J'Den.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P068: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 29 - 1100 ("A Vanishing Mystery")
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"A Vanishing Mystery"
[previous post (Chatting)]
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Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1100

One would have thought that being in orbit over a ship that had crashed on a small asteroid would have made for easy and quiet time, but the last three weeks or so had been anything but. Everyone had been busy with work and research, some aimed to understanding what had been while the rest worked on creating what would be.  The terraforming of Ju'Denaara clearly fell into the latter category.

As the Executive Officer it had been her job to supervise each and every project ensuring that everyone remained on task and received the material and assistance required to see their work be successful.  The Engineering department had stayed on time with their work to setup the base equipment that would be required for the terraforming of what had been the J'Den's homeworld. The medical staff had been taking care of the nine surviving male officers of the RAMAN with the assistance of Ensign Lopez who had offered them a shoulder to lean on through the transition.  According to the reports, all of them had been doing well, glad to being off the RAMAN and more important being in an environment where they were once again treated as equals instead of unwilling slaves.

On her end Lt Mitshiba had dedicated a great deal of her time researching the J'Den male ability to seduce women of other races into becoming volunteers for the transformation procedure.  Despite the CSciO having worked pretty much night and day in search for an answer and a way to shield the female members of the crew from heir influence.  A new report had been received from the science department but the Executive Officer had not yet had the time to review it having been busy with an entirely different matter.

"Report," the Captain asked as she walked out of her ready room, Selene already very much aware of the new situation that had sneaked up on them.

"Still nothing more than the occasional bleeps on long-range sensors," Sarena replied.  "Since we have ruled out equipment malfunction, we have to assume that whatever is out there is making sure to stay right on the edge of our sensors.  If there is something out there is keeps vanishing when we get close to scanning for it."

"Shutaar was unable to give us any idea of what we might be dealing with," Captain Iverson stated in a rhetoric manner, the J'Den woman having appeared at times almost annoyed about the questions which of course had only served to increase the feeling that she had been keeping something from them.

"As far as their sensors are concerned, there is nothing out there," Commander Valentine said with a sigh.  "She did not flat out say that our instruments were defective but she did wonder if maybe something might have caused them to be out of alignment.  Engineering was very quick to confirm the sensors' perfect working condition."

"What about the probe?"

"The final modifications to our class-2 sensor probe are almost completed," the Executive Officer confirmed with an air of devilish pride.  "We should be ready to launch it with the next 15 minutes."

"Good, keep in informed.  I'm heading down to the science lab, apparently Commander Janeel, Lieutenant Mitshiba and Ensign Lopez have something important to show me," the Captain said sounding somewhat perplexed by the request she had just received.

"It might have to do with the report I received a few minutes ago," Sarena said as she reached for the PADD on which the report had been stored.

"Must be something big," the Captain said in an amused tone.  "Carry on with the probe as planned, I should be back long before we get anything back from it."

Valentine nodded her acknowledgement and continued with the preparations for the launch of the class-2 sensor probe. The idea had been to change the propulsion system of the probe to have it travel at an excessively slow velocity this in the hopes of not drawing the attention of whatever was out there.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31227.1145

The class-2 probe had been sent and at a speed of a dozen meters or so per second it had taken it a while for it to get clear of the gravimetric interference of the asteroid upon which the RAMAN had crashed on.  Just when the sensors should have started to relay information about what had been beyond the range of the BASTET's senors, the probe simply vanished.

"Great," Sarena sighed, all of their work having apparently been for not.  "Bridge to Captain Iverson," the Executive Officer called out.  When no reply came, Sarena repeated her call and then again when the reply was nothing but silence.  "Computer, locate Captain Iverson."

=/\= Captain Iverson is not onboard the BASTET. =/\=

A quick internal scan showed that not only the Captain had gone missing but also the CSciO, CNS as well as their ILO.  Somehow all four of them had vanished from the ship and the only clue as of that moment had been a vanishing class-2 probe trying to scan for something that as far as the J'Den had been concerned had not even been there.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Setting: Unknown Location
Stardate: 31227.1148

The perfect darkness of the room was shattered by beams of light which enveloped each of the four members of the BASTET's crew how had inexplicably transported to wherever this place was.  Not wanting to take a chance, Captain Iverson ever so slowly extended her hand to see if the beam of light had represented some sort of force field. To her mixed relief the edge of the light had been just that.

"Is everyone alright?" the Captain asked having quickly noted that Commander Janeel, Lieutenant Mitshiba and Ensign Lopez had been here with her.

"Not suffering from any injuries if that's what you are asking," the ILO answered looking around for a clue as to where they were to no avail.

"How did we get here?" the CSciO asked as she too tested the edge of the beam of light.

"Wherever this is, let's stay together.  Hopefully we can get some quick answers to this mystery," the Captain began before a loud and thunderous voice echoed through the emptiness of the room they had suddenly found themselves in.

=/\= You have nothing to fear Captain Iverson.  You are your shipmates are safe. We brought you here because we need you. =/\=

"Who are you and what do you need us for?" Janeel demanded trying to see through the perfect darkness that surrounded them.

"We need you to help save a doomed race," a woman said as her presence was revealed from the darkness as a new beam of light appeared where she had been standing.  "You may not recognize me, but I am Lenaas. We are roughly 35 years in what you would call the future, and the doomed race I am asking you to save is my own -- the J'Den."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M02-P067: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 29 - 0830 ("Chatting")
-=-=-
"Chatting"
[Previous post: "Time To Wake Up"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 31227.0830

It had taken only a few questions for Ensign Lopez to declare Commander Janeel fit to be released from her bonds, the ILO appearing to have passed through her encounter with the J`Den men without any residual effects.  After that, the two women made themselves as comfortable as possible on the biobed and continued their little chat.

Misaki had researched the biochemical cause of this effect but here was the perfect opportunity for Adriana to do some research of her own, this one on the psychological effects of this same ability.

The few questions the CNS had started with had quickly multiplied into several more leading the two women to sit and talk for nearly two full hours.  Adriana had been most grateful for the time and patience Janeel had displayed in this quest to find answers that would hopefully led to some sort of defence against the effect of the male J`Den.

"It was strange," Janeel said following a detailed recollection of the encounter she had on the RAMAN.  "The men instantly displayed a complete subjugation.  I was actually surprised that they didn't try to kiss my feet."

"After centuries of having been treated as slave laborers it is not that surprising that they reacted in such a way," the CNS pointed out.  "The feet-kissing is just something that they have not been shown or was never demanded of them.  Every culture is different as far as having people show respect and absolute devotion to a person or group."

"I didn't mean that it was strange that they acted the way they did," Janeel joyfully clarified as she shook her head in disbelief of her own thoughts.  "I meant that it was strange that I reacted the way I did.  I accepted without question or hesitation their calling me 'Mistress' as if it had been perfectly normal.  It was the first time that any male J'Den had addressed me that way and yet it felt as if it had happened countless times before and that my position demanded it."

"That is likely part of the effect that radiates from them," Adriana shrugged. "Aki still has not been able to identify the biochemical cause although your encounter with the male J'Den did provide her, as well as everyone else, a unique look into the process."

"I can tell you that the process is instant and very addictive," the Commander chuckled nervously.  "Even if you take into account this 'compressed time' variable, my exposure to them was minimal at best and yet I was seriously considering volunteering to become one of them." Janeel paused while thinking of the situation as a whole and how that encountered had made her feel.  "I can imagine that there are a few women out there in this dimension who would jump at the opportunity with nothing more than a promise of being treated with such high respect and admiration.  With ideas and acceptance like that, the nearby presence of a male would be more than enough to push anyone over the edge without any second thought."

"You said that the effect were instant?" Adriana asked.

"Yes," Janeel nodded. "I even wonder if the effect had not somehow begun even before seeing them."

"But they might have seen you," the CNS theorized.  "What if the process is not a biochemical one but rather psychic, even if only in part?  It would explain why the effects are so quick to happen and why Misaki has been unable to find a chemical trigger for the effect."

"That is a very interesting idea, one that deserves to be more closely investigated," the Commander said as she jumped off the biobed and smiled at the Ensign waiting for her to do the same.  Apparently they were both heading to see the CSciO to talk about this new research angle on the ability of the male J'Den.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P066: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 29 - 0615 ("Time to Wake Up")
=-=
"Time to Wake Up"
[previous post was "Condensed Time" by the brilliant Dawn]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 31227.0615

Her eyes opened slowly, the dimmed lights of the room feeling as if there had been a few dozen suns shining down on her.  Any effort to move and search for some cover had proven to be pointless, she had been too weak to move, or that was what Janeel initially believed.  The more she made her way back to the real of the real, the more the ILO / Mission Specialist became aware of her situation.

"Sickbay?" She whispered to no one in particular. "Oh yes, now I remember," Janeel added while looking down to her sides to see the restraints that had kept her from moving.  "I did ask for it, at least I think I did."

"How are you feeling?" the nurse on duty asked having noticed that the patient had awakened and appeared far more relaxed than she had been before.

"Tired, a little disoriented and very curious," the ILO / Mission Specialist replied.

"Curious?"

"How long have I been here?"

"Three days Commander?"

"Well that would explain the soreness in my body," Janeel softly growled. As much as she had been ready to be set free the Commander knew that the nurse did not have the authority to release her from her bonds, and given the sensitivity of the situation the ILO / Mission Specialist figured that there had been only one person on board the BASTET who could grant her freedom.  "Would you be so kind as to inform Captain Iverson that I am awake and hopefully more cooperative than I have been over the last few days."

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 31227.0635

Captain Iverson and Ensign Lopez walked in together, the Captain having apparently thought it necessary to call upon the expertise of the Ship's Counsellor to gauge the status of their ILO / Mission Specialist.

"Good morning Commander, how are you feeling?" Lopez asked instantly drawing a frown from Janeel.

"Sorry, but I have been asked that question more times in the last 30 or so minutes than I had the year before," the red haired woman replied containing her frustration.  "As I previously stated, I am feeling tired, a little less disoriented and still very curious."

"It would seem that the effects of the male J'Den have worn off," the Counselor stated with a certain air of assurance.

"It would seem so," Captain Iverson agreed in all seriousness.

"That easy to tell?" the ILO / Mission Specialist wondered.

"You have not once asked to be set free or informed us that you urgently needed to go somewhere in the last 30 seconds," Ensign Lopez explained in a somewhat amused tone.

"What do you remember of your mission to the RAMAN?" the Captain asked, thinking that now had been just as good a time as any to debrief the officer on the events that had led her to be in restraints.

"I followed one of the unused passageways to the RAMAN's Main Engineering where we had detected some strange power readings.  There I noted a strange device and as soon as I obtained the opportunity I went in closer and scanned it," Janeel detailed.

"The tricorder and the information you gathered have been carefully reviewed by Lieutenant Mitshiba," the CO stated which made the ILO / Mission Specialist actually smile. Her efforts had been at least on some points successful.  "Go on, what else to you recall."

"The four male J'Den who had been working on the device were heading back and without an easy exit route I was forced to confront them," Janeel explained but stopping short of detailing that she had used her shapeshifting ability, still feeling that this was best kept out of any and all official records.

"So you ran into not one but four J'Den men, all of whom had been working on the machine," the Counselor nodded with wide eyes.  "No wonder you acted the way you did for the last three days.  You were on overdose of whatever they have that influences the mind."

"It gets more complicated than that," the Captain began. "The device has been confirmed to be some sort of temporal field generator and Lt. Mitshiba believes that although the field was too weak to affect space time it was enough to compress time in the immediate vicinity."

"So the few seconds I spent there with them were more like minutes or even hours," Janeel sighed as she let her head drop on the biobed. "Time four."

"You truly seem like you are back to normal, or very close to it," the Counselor said.  "Let me ask you a few questions and with the Captain's permission I should be able to release you from Sickbay."

"Getting me released from Sickbay would be nice, but getting free of these restraints would be even nicer," the ILO / Mission Specialist said in a half mocking tone, itching to being able to get up and stretch out the kinks in her body.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P065: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 27 - 1600 ("Condensed Time")
"Condensed Time"
Previous post: "Secrets"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 4, General Science Lab
Stardate: 31225.1600

The majority of her day was spent in the general science lab where the CSciO tried to decipher the information from the scans that had been contained in the tricorder Captain Iverson had handed over earlier that day.  Each scan had been a piece of a puzzle that seemed without form or reason, but Aki pressed on certain that there had been a good reason for the Captain to put her on this task.

The device that had been scanned appeared to be a mismatch of parts and technology that made little sense at best. Either someone had been trying to create some sort of modern art or the architect of this machine had not been following any set plan.  Either way the final product that had been scanned seemed to be nothing more than a useless jumble. After having given up on trying to identify a clear and specific purpose, Aki shifted her focus on trying to see what the device *might* have been intended for.

Based on the power requirements of the device, it had been easy for Aki to guess that the machine had been meant to do something big.  Although the energy utilization parameters could be compared to that of a small warp core, there had been no specific target for the power to be channeled to, so it was not some sort of generator.

Trying to solve this puzzle without having a global idea to work with had proven to make things exceptionally difficult.  Each mismatched piece had required an in depth analysis to even try to understand why it had been made to be part of the whole.  Aside from countless components that seemed to either be working against one another or simply had nothing in common, Mitshiba had come across three different types of emitters.

At first Aki had believed the difference to have been caused by a lack of material, but after closer inspection the CSciO discovered that each part had been meant to perform a very specific task. With a subspace spatial harmonics emitter, a quantum oscillator and a narrow-band tachyon emitter, there had been but a single possibly for the intended use of the device.

With that discovery the CSciO was able to narrow down her search parameters and try to either confirm or disprove her theory about what the device's ultimate purpose had been.  After a few more hours of intense research Aki confirmed her initial findings as well as something else. Seconds later she was out of the science lab and rushing at top speed to the bridge to make her report to the Captain.

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31225.2115

Like a mad woman the CSciO stormed onto the bridge demanding to see the Captain who quietly stood from her chair to meet Aki's gaze.

"My Ready Room," the CO instructed, directing the Lieutenant to enter first to insure that no one would get injured.

"Captain, I know what the device is meant to do," Aki blurred even before the door had closed behind the Captain.

"Slow down and take a deep breath," Captain Iverson suggested with authority.  "Now tell me what you have found."

"They are working on a way to open some sort of temporal rift," Aki reported still very much out of breath from her running.

"Are they close to completion?"

"No they are not," Mitshiba answered.  "The work is clumsy at best and would not be able to create a stable portal to another time."

"Thank you Lieutenant," the Captain said ready to dismiss the CSciO.

"Captain, there is more.  The device was active on some levels which made making sense of the tricorder readings a lot more difficult, but I believe that it can and will explain why Commander Janeel was so heavily affected by the J'Den men she encountered. That is if she did encounter them and they in turn were near the device," Aki explained as if she had made the most noteworthy discovery of her career.

"Explain," the Captain ordered now curious to see what else the CSciO had come across.

"The device creates a low intensity temporal compression field and although it it not powerful enough to affect our perception of the passage of time, it is capable of compressing certain aspects that are beyond our immediate senses.  What I am trying to say is that I suspect that although it was likely only for a few seconds, Commander Janeel's exposure to the the men working on the machine could have been made to equal hours if not days of normal exposure. This would explain as to why she was and still is so badly affected."

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M02-P064: USS BASTET: Iverson: Day 27 - 0830 ("Secrets")
---
"Secrets"
(Previous Post: "Not In Her Right Mind")
---

Setting: USS BASTET, Captain's Ready Room
Stardate: 31225.0830

Captain Iverson sat at her desk perusing the information contained on the PADD firmly held in her left hand, the right hand having been occupied with a cup of green tea.

Lieutenant Mitshiba had done a great deal of research on the ability of the male J'Den to influence women of other races. That mechanics of that ability had been very difficult to understand but the results had been impossible to miss as judged by the state in which Commander Janeel had been in.  Nothing certain could be said about what had happened, but the pieces of the puzzle all added up too easily to be ignored.  The ILO had been doing undercover work on the RAMAN and had urgently returned to the BASTET suffering from a mental affliction that fit the bill.

The door chime drew the Captain out of her thoughts.  "Enter."

"You wanted to see me Captain?" Lieutenant Mitshiba said as she stepped into the Ready Room and greeted the Commanding Officer with a smile.

"I have read your latest report on the bio-chemical effects of the J'Den male on females of other species," Selene began placing the PADD that had been in her hand down on her desk.  "Looks like you have the working of a science journal article that would interest a great deal of people back home."

"Too bad that any work and research done here is classified at the highest level," Misaki chuckled, not sounding overly upset with the fact that her efforts and countless hours of work would never be properly acknowledged by the general science community.

"Rest assured that your work and dedication are very much appreciated here," the Captain offered supportively, "and speaking of classified I have something else I need you to look at." As Selene spoke she produced a tricoder from her desk and presented it to the Chief Science Officer.  "I need you to analyse the scans and data contained in this device and report back to me as soon as possible."

"May I ask as to what is in there?" Lieutenant Mitshiba inquired sounding a little hesitant, not at the idea of following a mysterious order but rather at what kind of classified information she would be discovering inside the device.

"I need to know what capabilities, if any, the device scanned has," the Captain vaguely explained.  "The J'Den have been keeping secrets from us, not that I entirely blame them, but we need to know what they are working on and if they are close to achieving their objective."

"Sounds spooky," the Chief Science Officer stated with some hint of concern in her voice.

"Only time will tell," Captain Iverson replied, purposefully foreshadowing the situation that Lieutenant Mitshiba would be investigating.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31225.0930

Shortly after the meeting with Lieutenant Mitshiba, Captain Iverson had returned to the bridge to check in with her First Officer.  "Report."

"We are still in geosynchronous orbit over the RAMAN. Long-range sensors have picked up some subspace chatter and ship movements but nothing that presents any sort of problems for us.  All in all this area of space appears to be extremely quiet," Commander Valentine stated in reply to the order from the Captain.

"What about the RAMAN itself?"

"Sensors have not picked up anything out of the ordinary," Sarena replied with a hint of disappointment.  "The J'Den appear to be going about their business as usual.  There has been some energy spikes in what was Main Engineering but the guess was that they have been working on terra forming equipment using some of the components they had asked for."

Captain Iverson nodded her had, both in acknowledgement of the report she had received and the understanding that this had been what Commander Janeel had gone to investigate.  The Intelligence Liaison Officer had been tasked with finding out as much as possible on the plans and work of the J'Den, which now all seemed to point to the Main Engineering section of the USS RAMAN.

"Inform me should anything change," Selene said as she made her way to the turbolift. "I'll be in sickbay checking in on Commander Janeel."

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 31225.0945

Captain Iverson entered the room to find the Counselor sitting next to the still restrained Intelligence Liaison Officer.  At first glance Janeel appeared to be much calmer than she had been the last time the Captain had seen her.

"Ensign Lopez, how is our patient doing?"

Before the Counselor could even think of an answer, the restrained woman erupted in an uncontrolled and certainly uncharacteristic rage.

"RELEASE ME NOW! YOU CANNOT KEEP ME HERE LIKE THIS. I HAVE TO GO BACK."

"Does that answer your question?" Adriana said as she rolled her eyes in an indication that this had been ongoing.  "The Doctor has been trying to figure it out using what information Lieutenant Mitshiba provided but so far we have had no success in getting Commander Janeel back from this delirious state.  The most that we can figure out at this point is that there is something that has drastically changed her brain chemistry but we have yet to identify what the trigger is.  One thing for is for sure, the effects are lasting a lot longer than we all would like them to."

"Hard to believe that the J'Den had such a powerful tool at their disposal without knowing about it," Selene deeply sighed as she considered the repercussions of this knowledge on the race as a whole. Yes this would give the men an additional value and active role to play in the survival of their race, but it also held a high potential of being abused by the women in charge.

"Are we doing the right thing?" Misaki asked, the Counselor thinking along the same lines as the Captain had.  "Nature has a way to balance itself out on its own. As much as we might not have agreed with the way the J'Den treated their men, the lack of knowledge about the ability they possessed helped to keep things in balance.  Now I am afraid, looking at the way Commander Janeel is, that we might have given Shutaar and the others a weapon that could change the shape of this dimension and maybe even others."

"I understand your reservations and concerns Ensign," Selene said in complete agreement, "but right now our primary concern needs to be getting Commander Janeel back.  We will need to address the rest after.  Do you best and keep me informed."

"Yes Captain."

---
Jessica Solarik

Captain Selene Fiona Iverson [Access Character BIO for Selene Iverson]
Commanding Officer
USS BASTET

&

Lieutenant Commander Maya [Access Character BIO for Maya]
Chief Science Officer
USS ANUBIS

"To see the world in a grain of sand,
and a heaven in a wild flower.
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
and eternity in an hour."
- William Blake (British, 1757-1827)
M02-P063: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 27 - 0045 ("Not In Her Right Mind")
-=-=-
"Not In Her Right Mind"
[Previous post: "Trust Issues"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 31225.0045

The call had pulled Adriana out of a deep, peaceful sleep, one that she had wished to return to the entire time she had rushed to Sickbay.  What sort of medical emergency could there have been at such an early hour, one that required the ship's Counselor to be there?

The CNS walked into the room and came to a dead stop as her gaze fell upon the form of Commander Janeel who laid on the main biobed in full restraints.  The way she struggled against the straps that held her down made it clear that something was not right.

"Let me go!" the Commander screamed at the top of her lungs as if her life depended on her being somewhere else.

"She looks crazier than you are," Amanda chuckled, the image of her sister having appeared on the other side of the biobed.

"What happened?" the CNS asked, taking slow and cautious steps towards the enraged restrained woman.

"She called for an emergency beam up from the RAMAN and we had to restrain her the moment she materialized," the transporter Chief reported.

"Was she that agitated?" Adriana asked, surprised and concerned in seeing the Commander acting this way. 

"She was, sort of, but she asked to be restrained," he clarified.  "She just went completely nuts after we brought her here."

"What was she doing on the RAMAN at this hour?" the two sisters said at the same time although only the one present in this reality was heard.

"She was searching for information," the Captain replied having walked into Sickbay just in time to hear the question.  "Can you help her?" Selene asked of Adriana after having approached the biobed.

"I'm not even sure what is wrong with her.  She looks hyper agitated and appears to be wanting to go somewhere with great urgency," the CNS explained.

"She was on the RAMAN and likely ran into one of more men," the Captain theorized.

"I never expected their influence to be that strong," Adriana chocked not having allowed that possibility to be considered until it had been mentioned by the Captain.  "Everything that we were told and that Lt. Mitshiba has discovered never indicated that the effects would be so brutal."

"Something else might have happened on the RAMAN, but in order to figure out what that is we need to be able t talk to her. Do your best to help her regain her wits," the Captain ordered as she approached the restrained woman who had still been struggling against the straps holding her with ever ounce of strength at her disposal.

Through the mental storm the ILO managed to find the will to reach for her tricorder and hand it over to their CO.

"What's in that tricorder?" Adriana asked.

"Something I suspect will be way above your security clearance," Amanda replied with a chuckle, the illusion of the missing sister appearing to find all of this rather amusing.

"Answers we hope Ensign, answers," the Captain replied, giving a reply without actually providing the CNS with anything to work with.  "Do your best to help her, I will be on the bridge."

Adriana simply watched as their CO left Sickbay leaving the CNS to deal with the restrained ILO.

"You need to relax Commander," Ensign Lopez gently said trying to ease the woman without having to resort to sedation.

"I will, as soon as you let me go," Janeel snapped back like an enraged beast leaving the CNS to wonder if security should not be present in the room with them, just in case.

"Can you tell me what happened?"

"I can do better than that," the ILO replied through a snarl, "untie me and I will show you."

"This is going to take a while," Amanda actually laughed.  "Her mind is as scrambled as those eggs dad likes."

Adriana turned to look at the sister only she could see, the words having been said hitting home in a way that the CNS had never expected.  How could the image of her sister, one created by the Counselor's own mind, know this fact? Their father had stopped doing a great many things the day one of his twin daughters had vanished; eating scrambled eggs had only been one of many. So why would the illusion make such a reference?

The ship's Counselor closed her eyes and took in a long deep breath.  How was the CNS supposed to help the ILO after having realized that the Commander had not been the only one not in her right mind?  Dealing with the problem at hand would be more than enough and Adriana could not afford to be distracted by her own inner problems.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P062: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 26 - 2345 ("Trust Issues")
=-=
"Trust Issues"
[previous post was "Research" by the talented Dawn]
=-=

Setting: USS RAMAN, Engineering Section
Stardate: 31224.2345

The ship was in bad shape, there was no denying that fact. It had taken quite a bit of work for the ILO / Mission Specialist to make it this far through the debris and rubble but her search for answers had led her here; to what was left of the Engineering section of the USS RAMAN.

It had not been easy to get the J'Den to talk, especially given that Janeel had been limited to interacting with only the few dozen women. The ability of the men to lure people into becoming volunteers would have likely been too strong for Janeel to resist, and that prospect scared her more than he could say. Becoming a member of another race had not been the way she had envisioned ending her Starfleet career, not that she had given *that* thought any real time to contemplate before now.

It had taken a few weeks for Shutaar to let it slip that the J'Den had actually been working on some sort of temporal tech, their work being based on memories obtained from a few of their most recent volunteers.  It took another week or so to have Kiraal admit that there had been something strange happening in what had been her ship's engineering section.  It had only taken a few moments for Janeel to make the connection.

The closer she got to her destination the more noise the ILO / Mission Specialist could hear ahead, coming from where she needed to be.  The clanking of metals and scraping of heavy objects on the floor had greatly slowed her progress to insure that she would not be detected.  Through the fallen support beams and hanging conduits, Janeel could see several J'Den men working on a device that might or might not have been a component of the RAMAN back in its glory days. Without a clear line of sight there had been no way for her to know what the object was or what the men had been doing with it.

Having weighed the risks of being discovered against the possibility of finding some of the answers she had been searching for, the ILO / Mission Specialist carefully and quietly proceeded forward.

"No, no, no," a J'Den woman whom Janeel had only seen in passing sighed in exasperation. "The phase discrimination unit needs to be attached to the secondary power assembly, not to the quantum matrix.  At least I think so, it is hard to work from memories of another life."

Janeel wanted to confront the woman. The BASTET and its crew had offered to help them and still the J'Den had kept secrets from them, but the ILO/ Mission Specialist quickly decided otherwise.  They had been in this dimension for nearly a month now, and as long as this might have felt, the time shared between the two groups had understandably not been enough to establish the level of trust needed.  Even with worlds that had been part of the Federations for countless years, that trust had still been incomplete, so it was unrealistic to expect the J'Den to be more than that after only a month.

"Go take a break," the J'Den woman commanded as if speaking to a set of pets, showing just how wide the gender gap had been.  As disgusting as the scene had been, the ILO / Mission Specialist recognized it as the perfect opportunity to get closer and see what the device they had been working on actually was.

After having insured to the best of her abilities that the area had been fully vacated, Janeel made her way through the last of the debris to land into the room, the strange device standing right there in the middle.  At first it appeared more like some sort of abstract art piece than an engineering component, the device showing parts from various origins.

Not having been an engineer herself, Janeel could only base her observation of the device in comparison to the Dimensional Jump Drive of the USS BASTET, and at first glance there had been absolutely nothing similar about the two devices.

"Maybe this is meant for an entirely different purpose," the ILO / Mission Specialist whispered to herself as she reached beneath the J'Den civilian clothing she had selected for her tricorder to take some scans. The device had appeared far too complex for Janeel to be able to make an accurate verbal account of what she had discovered, and the scans would hopefully allow Lieutenant Mitshiba to make some sense of whatever this was.

Losing track of time, the Starfleet Officer was very meticulous about her scans of the unknown machine, taking readings on anything and everything she could.  As an Intel Operative, the

Just as the hand-held device was returned to its home on the officer's belt, the sound of approaching footsteps were heard from the only corridor leading into the room.  Janeel had opted not to use that path in her quest for answers so as to not draw any unwanted attention, and with that way occupied her only escape route had been back the way she came.  Given the speed at which the sound of the footsteps grew in intensity, the ILO / Mission Specialist knew that she had not enough time to make her exit without being noticed.  This left the spy with a single mean of avoiding her presence to be discovered in the next few seconds.

"Forgive us Mistress Kiraal," the four men fearfully said in unison almost dropping to their knees at the sight of the J'Den woman standing there before them.  "We were not informed of your presence."

Janeel could see the men trembling. Despite them not having done anything wrong their fear had been palpable.

"I do not need to inform you of my every movements through what was once my ship," Janeel barked having studied the J'Den woman over the last few weeks enough to be able to take on her likeness and voice,

"Please Mistress, forgive us. No disrespect was meant, we beg for your mercy."

They were scared, even terrified at the prospect of what their punishment might be for having interrupted whatever had been happening.  Normally Janeel would have been shocked, disturbed and maybe even sickened by the display, but somehow she managed to find it mildly amusing. Being a J'Den woman presented unique charms and advantages, that had been beyond a fact. With only a few seconds of exposure of this display, one that had been for obvious reasons kept from the crew of the BASTET, Janeel could see the appeal in becoming one of them.

That's when it hit her. She was considering volunteering... seriously exploring the possibility and living the res of her life as a J'Den.  With four men against her, there had not even been a need for anyone to suggest it, the thought alone enhanced by their combined powers had overwhelmed her mental defences in a question of seconds.

She needed to get out now or forever abandon the life she had known.

"Get to work," Janeel forced out as she pushed her way past the kneeling quartet.  The distance between her and the men she had left behind could not increase fast enough for her liking, the drive to a volunteer having already become nearly impossible to manage.  In a few seconds the ILO / Mission Specialist would likely not be able to trust her own judgement about anything.

Janeel quickly made her way through the corridor and dodged into the first open door hoping that she would be able to be alone for just a few seconds.  To her great relief the ILO / Mission Specialist had found her way into a room filled with crates.  Normally she would have been curious about what had been in them but time had been a luxury that she could not afford.  Reaching into a pocket the woman fetched her comm badge and pressed it with urgency.

"Janeel to BASTET," the woman said her voice and appearance having reverted back to that of the ship's ILO / Mission Specialist.  "Emergency beam out."

Seconds later the form of the woman vanished in the swirling lights of a transporter beam, taking her away from the drive to volunteer, or so Janeel hoped.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P061: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 11 - 0800 ("Research")
"Research"
Previous post: "A New Direction"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 5, Exo-Biology Lab
Stardate: 31209.0800

Captain Iverson had tasked Aki with just a few objectives, none of them having been all that easy. First, the CSciO was to find out as much as possible about the way the J'Den males influenced women from other races with such intensity, and if possible to find a way to counter act the effects.  Although her research had thus far not shown any sort of biological or chemical agent at work, Mitshiba had not been ready to dismiss the possibility of there being some sort of hormone at play.  That had been the only way she could account as to why the male survivors of the RAMAN had displayed similar abilities as the males of the alien race and why these abilities had vanished over their time spent on the BASTET.

The second task had been to see how complicated it would be to establish a terraforming facility on the J'Den homeworld. The target: to at the very least make the planet once again hospitable to humanoid life.  Shutaar, Lenaas and Kiraal had provided all of the data at their disposal on Ju'Denaara which had given Aki more than enough to work with to see if this had been a valid possibility.

The third and last task, and the one that Mitshiba had found to be the oddest, had required the CSciO to gather as much data on the negative effects of tempering with an established timeline.  The Captain had not given any reasons for this request, only stating that the information would be passed on to the J'Den.  As far as Aki had been concerned, the alien race might have had in their possession trans-dimensional technology but nothing had been hinted to about them possessing temporal travel capabilities.

As curious as she might have been about this particular task, Aki had given up on trying to understand why and had instead focussed on completing the task as it had been requested.

"Computer, begin recording research log," Aki said, pausing a few seconds to allow the computer to comply with the request.  "Chief Science Officer's log, stardate 21211.18. It has been a week since the Captain tasked the crew with helping the J'Den rebuild their society. During that time I have been able to determine far less than I had hoped for in regards to the source and cause of the men's influence on women of other species.  Luckily, my work on the possible terraforming of their homeworld has proven to be far more successful. Based on the data provided, it does appear that the planet designated as Ju'Denaara would be able to be returned to a life sustaining environment.  The problem is that the work would require at the very least a dozen generators 60 to 75 years to achieve a viable and livable world.  I can only hope that Shutaar will see this as a step in the right direction instead of an unacceptable time frame.  As both my parents were fond of saying, nothing worthwhile on a galactic scale happens overnight."

Aki paused once again as she debated on what to say next.

"Computer, end research log and begin recording personal log," Mitshiba continued, thinking it best to keep what she would say next private.  "Misaki Mitshiba's personal log, stardate 21211.18. It has been a week since the Captain gave me these tasks and I can't shake the feeling that there is a lot more about her third and last request.  Compiling the research and facts that led to the temporal prime directive is by itself an easy task. Presenting it in a manner that Shutaar and the rest of the J'Den will understand and accept should not be all that much more complicated, but why would Captain Iverson ask me to do this?  The J'Den obtained trans-dimensional technology from the Masters and over the course of centuries were able to adapt it to their needs.  Nothing points to them having any sort of temporal travel technology or that they have been actively working on something that would allow them to do so.  I can understand the desire to go back and change the events that led to their enslavement and near extinction, but from where i stand these are just ideas and dreams.  The Captain must have been made aware of something more to prompt her to want the J'Den to become aware of the dangers of time travel.  Maybe I can find out more when I give the completed file to her, in the meantime I just have to carry on and only worry about completing what was requested of me."

The CSciO sighed, the weight of her own curiosity taken its toll on her.

"Computer, end personal log."

What if the J'Den did possess some sort of time traveling technology, one that was either damaged or incomplete?  Would they truly try to change their past giving up all of the knowledge and abilities that they had gathered over those years?  Would they truly be ready to risk losing everything they have for the sake of getting back what they once had some three thousand years ago?

All these questions and many more filled Aki's thoughts but only one always managed to make its way to the front of the line as to which one needed to be answered first: What was Captain Iverson's angle in all of his temporal travel affair?

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M02-P060: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 4 - 1000 ("A New Direction")
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"A New Direction"
[previous post (Discussion)]
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Setting: USS RAMAN, Observation Lounge
Stardate: 31202.1000

The entire senior staff waited with baited breath for their Captain to step out of the Conference Lounge and get a preliminary idea of how the discussion with Shutaar had gone.  For some reason Iverson had decided to keep her opinions about the woman to herself, so no one knew if their Captain had sided with her Executive Officer and ILO or with the CSciO and CNS.

"Maybe they ended up killing each other," the ILO quietly suggested, the glance shot towards Ensign Lopez as she spoke was the only indication that Janeel had been teasing the Counsellor who had more than once pointed out the woman's ability to see the worst case scenario in anything and everything.

"They're coming out," Mitshiba whispered for all to hear making sure that everyone's attention would be on the now opened door and on whoever would step out first.  The manner in which they would be entering the bridge would be the one and only clue they needed to figure out how the rather lengthy talk had gone.

Shutaar was the first to step out closely followed by Captain Iverson, both women displaying a faint smile which hinted that all had gone well.  The question still remained though: which way had it gone well?  Had the CO laid down the law and diplomatically explained why the J'Den woman could no longer be trusted or had Selene sided with Shutaar against the accusations made by Lenaas?

"Lieutenant Mitshiba, I would like for you to provide Shutaar with a complete copy of your findings on the influence of the male J'Den," the Captain said in a way that was not an order while still not being open for debate.  The news that they would be sharing their research made Sarena twitch a little, a feeling that was reflected in the ILO's expression.

Having noticed the discomfort of her senior officers, Captain Iverson motioned for everyone to gather before offering an explanation.  As the BASTET's CO Selene had no need to do this, but she had learned that sharing her reasoning with her crew served to bring everyone on the same page and allowed for a smoother working ship.

"Since I am guessing that you have all been here waiting, let me fill you in," the Captain grinned as she was met with expressions of surprise and shame from some of her officers.

"Well, we were a little curious," Ensign Lopez reluctantly admitted to her CO, not seeing any reason to attempt to deny the truth.

"After having spoken at length with Lenaas and Shutaar, the BASTET will take on an active role in helping the J'Den in rebuilding their culture, one that will see a positive shift in he way the male segment of the population is treated," Selene announced.

"I will take some time for us all to adapt to these new ways, but given what your Captain as said and explained it is clear that our current structure is only going to lead us into darkness that we may never be able to escape from," Shutaar added, the woman appearing both relieved and afraid.

"So a compromise was found?" Lopez asked, suspecting that the Captain had found the diplomatic middle ground between the two J'Den women.

"The ground work has been done but there is still a great many details to be worked out," Selene explained.  "Shutaar has agreed to take Lenaas' counsel to offset the centuries of mistrust as well as to find a way to reintegrate the male population into a more equal part of their society.  They will also work to better understand the role the males play in the continued survival of the race.  Beyond that, the J'Den and the Federation will have open diplomatic channels allowing for them to ask for assistance when in need and giving us the opportunity to study a truly unique and remarkable society."

"You mentioned that we would be taking on an active role in helping them rebuild their society?" Janeel questioned curious as to what exactly their role and intended goal would be.

"The idea is for us to provide expertise in terraforming as well as held the male portion of the J'Den take on a more involved position in the prosperity of the race.  With them knowing about their own abilities, it should be easy to have them raise above the purely physical labor force," the Captain explained.

"That may be a lot more complicated than it sounds," the CNS gasped. "According to what Misaki reported from what Lenaas ha said, the males have been doing nothing but menial tasks for centuries.  Not only are we going against engraved ways of thinkings, but also what I suspect will be a severe lack in skills."

"That is why we are helping," Captain Iverson noted.  "We all know that this will not be an overnight affair, but the key is for the foundation of this new J'Den society to be shaped so that they can evolve into a race that will see everyone benefiting from what we hope will be a renewed prosperity."

"If you will excuse me, I need to return to the RAMAN and speak to Kiraal and Lenaas, there is a great deal to be shared," Shutaar said adding a bow of her head in thanks and acknowledgement to the crew of the USS BASTET.

"There is a great deal to be done as well," Captain Iverson added.  "Ensign Lopez, please see that we have adequate quarters for the RAMAN's survivors and continue working with Lieutenant Mitshiba to find a way to counter the effect of their presence on the women on board."

"It might be safer to insure that only male crewmembers interact with our new guests for the time being," Janeel suggested.

"I agree. We need to set up a quarantine zone until such time as we can confirm that their influence on the women of the BASTET is well under control or even better nullified," the Captain clearly stated not wanting there to be any misunderstandings about the cautions that needed to be taken.  Although the male survivors of the RAMAN had not become J'Den it had been made evident that they had somehow gained, in part or in whole, the influential presence of the males of that species.

"I will coordinate with Engineering and Science Departments to see how much we can provide in terms of terraforming expertise," Commander Valentine said, anticipating her CO's next orders.

"Captain, you do realize what we are trying to do here?" Janeel questioned, a distinct hint of disapproval in her voice.  "We are trying to reshape this culture to be more in line with our own beliefs.  Since the race does possess warp capabilities, and even trans-dimensional technology, the Prime-Directive does not apply, but still is it right for us to so heavily interfere with the natural growth of an entire species?"

"The request for help was made, and given the absence of current and likely upcoming formal diplomatic ties, I thought it best for us to help as much as we could now," Captain Iverson said in her defence.  "Plus, Shutaar mentioned something that I thought would prove to be very interesting to us.  The trans-dimensional technology they have came from the Masters who left it behind.  Over the centuries the J'Den have learned to understand it functioning and have gone as far as to test modifications, these not dealing in travel through dimensions but rather through time."

"They are trying to find a way to go back and change their own race's history?" the ILO gasped. "Do they realize the kind of nightmare they would be unleashing from their very first attempt?  They could effectively destroy themselves through their efforts to save the race."

"That was one of the reasons why I thought it best for us to offer our help and assistance," Captain Iverson continued.  "If this technology is truly ready for use, the J'Den will need to be made aware of the full repercussions of their efforts."

"I will see what I can find out about this temporal technology and will report back with my findings," the ILO stated, the woman having taken on a task that suited her skills perfectly.

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Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M02-P059: USS BASTET: Iverson: Day 3 - 2030 ("Discussion")
---
"Discussion"
(Previous Post: "Trying To Understand")
---
Setting: USS BASTET, Observation Lounge
Stardate: 31201.2030

Captain Iverson pensively stood with her hands clasped behind her back, her gaze lost amongst the foreign stars of this dimension.  Although the meeting with the members of the away team had been relatively short, a great deal of information as well as emotions had been presented.

Commander Sarena Valentine and Lieutenant Commander Janeel had both taken a stand against the latest member of the J'Den to be encountered; Lenaas, while Lieutenant Misaki Mitshiba and Ensign Adriana Lopez had placed their faith in the woman's statements.  One side had based their decision on personal and professional experience while the other had relied on feelings and intuition to shape their beliefs.  In the end though, Captain Selene Iverson had been left dead in the middle to figure out the situation that they had found themselves in.

Shutaar had been the first of the J'Den to be encountered and the woman had come across as a very helpful and friendly person, so much so that many had begun to wonder as to why the BASTET had been made to be the target of so much assistance and help.  Lenaas had been the most recent addition to the members of the alien race to be encountered and she had provided a great deal of information that in many ways supported the misgivings felt by those on board the trans-dimensional Federation vessel.

The J'Den as individuals had proven to be very interesting and the race as a whole had been nothing short of a wonder to discover and learn about.  For many Commanding Officers, making an unscheduled First Contact ranked amongst the least desirable part of their duties, but in this particular case everything had gone superbly. Ideas had been freely shared without any diplomatic toes being stepped on or even trampled, and it surely felt as if the J'Den would be counted as a friend if not a flat out ally in the near future.

Rescuing the survivors of the USS RAMAN had almost come as a bonus until more had been discovered about the unique manner in which the J'Den insured their race's continued survival. The need for volunteers to take on the genetic identity of the race had not been something that Selene had found overly odd, the Captain having known and dealt with other races utilizing much more complex and twisted methods of keeping them from becoming another footnote in the pages of the galactic history book.  What Captain Iverson did have a problem with was reconciling the fact that Shutaar, the woman who had presented herself as a leader if not *the* leader of the J'Den, had been unaware of the important role the males of her race played in their own survival.

Could it truly be possible for Shutaar to have been unaware of the influence the J'Den males exerted on the females of other races leading them to be more receptive to becoming volunteers?

Adding in the transfer of genetic memories from a J'Den donor to a new volunteer only made the debate as to Shutaar's goals and intents that much less clear.  Again thanks to experience with other races, Captain Iverson knew all too well how powerful ancient memories and ways could be in shaping a culture even several centuries later.  The conflict to bring the J'Den out of their slavery had cast the male population into a rot that they had yet to find a way out of.  Centuries had passed since the race had gained their freedom but the ideas and opinions towards the males born of that time were still very much in effect.

The sound of the door chime drew Captain Selene Fiona Iverson out of her thoughts and back into the room where she had been standing alone since the members of the away team had been dismissed. The next step had been hers and hers alone, and the outcome could possibly change forever an entire races way of life.

"Enter."

"You wished to see me?" Lenaas ever so politely asked making Selene believe for a moment that all of the women of the J'Den were born diplomats, if *born* could be used in such a case.

"Yes, please come in," Captain Iverson said welcoming the woman into the Observation Lounge and inviting her to take a seat right next to the one the Commanding Officer would be sitting in.  Selene thought that taking position on the opposite side of the table would set the discussion that would follow on the wrong tone. In order for trust to be earned, trust needed to be first shown.  "I have a few questions that I would greatly appreciate you answering for me."

"I suspected you would," Lenaas said as she accepted the chair that had been offered to her by the Commanding Officer of the USS BASTET.  "Is this where you usually conduct interrogations?"

"Interrogations?" Selene gasped in surprise.  "Although I do have questions this is a friendly discussion between you and I. No method will be used to extract information for you, the choice of your collaboration and truthfulness of you answers is entirely up to you."

"Please accept my apologies Captain," the J'Den woman offered, a hint of shame having crossed her features.  "You have to understand that even though I do not have the amount of memories many of my sisters do, the impact of our having been slaves for so long is still very strong in all of our minds."

"I understand," Captain Iverson warmly comforted, "and I can only imagine how the ability to have such memories stay so vivid from one generation to the next would affect your culture.  Our ability to leave the past behind us is sometimes looked upon as a failing, forcing us to learn the same lessons over and over again, but in your case these lessons can never be forgotten."

"As I said to your Chief Science Officer, you understand us better that you or us might have realized," Lenaas said in admiration.  "I can see why Shutaar is impressed by your people.  You are wise and open to people and ways that are not your own. Despite our ability to transfer all of our gathered memories forward to those who have accepted to become volunteers, you are proof that we are far from knowing or even understanding everything."

"The first goal of understanding the universe around us is to accept that we know and understand nothing," Selene said paraphrasing to the better of her recollection one of the lessons she had learned from her mother.

"How I wish that we possessed such wisdom to be shared," Lenaas sadly sighed.  "The first memories our volunteers are subjected to are centuries of pain and struggles, when those few who had survived wondered if they would ever see better days.  Although we as a people gain the knowledge and wisdom of those who join us, those are but a few drops in turbulent ocean that had not settled in centuries."

The two women stared at one another for a moment, each trying to figure out what the other had been thinking.

"I am sorry Captain, you have summoned me here to answer questions and all I seem to be able to do is ramble on," the J'Den pointed out with visible discomfort showing that she had been as honest in her words as could be.  "Please, ask your questions, I promise to answer them all to the best of my abilities."

"Again, there is no need to apologise. Many of the questions I had have already been addressed by what you have said, and I find this exchange far more pleasant than you answering what might very well be ill chosen questions," Captain Iverson amicably proposed, the Commanding Officer of the USS BASTET having now understood why Lieutenant Mitshiba and Ensign Lopez had been so ready to defend the woman.  The friendliness and openness of Lenass had been beyond charming and had served well to place Selene in a position of ease and comfort.

"As I do not wish to waste your time, I will talk about what, or more to the point who, you wish to learn more about," Lenaas confidently said knowing all too well that what had been shared with the Chief Science Officer of the BASTET had brought into question a great many things concerning the J'Den woman Shutaar.

"It seems that you understand us as well as we understand you," Captain Iverson chuckled, looking forward to hearing what Lenaas had to say about the J'Den woman who might have had alternate reasons for her having been so friendly and welcoming towards the USS BASTET and its crew.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Observation Lounge
Stardate: 31202.0830

The evening had been a long one with Lenaas talking about Shutaar, the J'Den and the centuries worth of genetic memories that had been passed down.  At one point during the night Captain Iverson had considered herself lucky that the woman who had been the donor of the genetic material to the volunteer who would become Lenaas had suffered a massive had injury causing her to lose many of her memories.  Had this not been the case, Selene suspected that the discussion they had shared would have likely still been going on at this time.

Armed with a great deal more information than she had the day before, the Commanding Officer of the USS BASTET felt ready to confront Shutaar and work out the reasons and details of why they had come to this dimension.

"You know that you and your crew are always welcome to beam down to the RAMAN," Shutaar said as she was being escorted to the Observation Lounge where the Captain waited, standing in the same general posture that she had the evening before when Lenaas had been welcomed in.

"I appreciate your generous offer but I thought it best if we could meet here this morning," Selene stated in a polite yet firm manner making the J'Den woman aware that this had not been a simple meeting.  "My crew and I have managed to get some more information about your race and more specifically about you.  I wanted to share this knowledge and see what your thoughts were."

"You should not be too quick to accept what Lenaas as to offer as either fact or even truth," Shutaar growled in displeasure.

"The simple fact that you know where the information came from says quite a lot," Captain Iverson pointed out as she invited her guest to sit in the same chair where the woman in question had been the evening before.

"Captain, my people are few and I personally know each and every single one of those who are present on the USS RAMAN, identifying the source of your information was no great feat of deduction. That said I am pleased to see that you have chosen to speak to me instead of accepting her words over mine," the J'Den woman said, clearly doing her best to contain her frustration at the situation.

"I am not here to take sides in whatever conflict you two may be in," Selene explained as she joined the other woman at the conference table. "I am simply trying to get as much information as possible to understand the situation and make the best decision possible, not for the BASTET and her crew but for all of us.  You have been most generous and I believe that we can both benefit from our discussion here."

"Our history is filled with promises of discussions to hide the true intentions of who would become our masters," Shutaar responded with unimpressed anger.

"That is exactly what I would like to speak about," the Captain calmly stated trying to come across as friendly and unthreatening as possible.  "You are basing your decisions and attitude on centuries of dark and painful memories.  You have observed us and accepted the Federation as a possible ally; I am here to confirm that our intents are nothing more than to open diplomatic liaisons that I hope would prove beneficial to both our people.  We are not here to take anything from you, but I hope that by the end of our discussion here you will find that we have given you something that you had never expected.

Although visibly reluctant Shutaar remained seated and allowed for Captain Iverson to continue on with the discussion. Maybe, just maybe the Commanding Officer of the USS BASTET might have something worth listening to.

---
Jessica Solarik

Captain Selene Fiona Iverson [Access Character BIO for Selene Iverson]
Commanding Officer
USS BASTET

&

Lieutenant Commander Maya [Access Character BIO for Maya]
Chief Science Officer
USS ANUBIS

"To see the world in a grain of sand,
and a heaven in a wild flower.
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
and eternity in an hour."
- William Blake (British, 1757-1827)
M02-P058: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 3 - 2015 ("Trying To Understand")
-=-=-
"Trying To Understand"
[Previous post: "More Pieces To The Puzzle"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Turbolift
Stardate: 31201.2015

"I think you were a bit rough on Commander Janeel," Misaki said while the illusionary image of the twin sister grinned from ear to ear nodding her head in heartfelt agreement.

"Both Commander Janeel and Valentine seem to be hell bent on finding a darker reason for us being here," Adriana said doing her best to ignore the image of her sister.  "I think it would not hurt if we tried to understand instead of condemn."
 
"As a scientist I look at empirical evidence," the CSciO half chuckled. "To me there is either one side or another, it is rare that I find myself in the middle of something without knowing which way I should be going.  My thoughts are based on measurable actions and reactions.  As the ship's Counselor you look at what drives a person, so you decide which side of a debate you will be going on by taking into account emotions and feelings.  For Commander Janeel and Valentine, they both base their opinions on history and experience.  What you see as flat out opposition is nothing more than them being cautious for the sake of the ship and its crew."

"She sounds more like a ship's counselor than you do," the illusionary twin sister said with a smirk.

"Alright," the Ensign sighed. "Maybe I am being overly naive. Maybe my lack of experience is making me see too much good in people instead of seeing darker plans, but if we thought and acted like them all the time the Federation would never have made any allies."

"Don't get me wrong," Misaki said, smiling. "I agree with you, the problem is that we are lacking time and the diplomatic avenues usually employed for such situations.  The Captain was forced into a first contact situation with a race that knows a great deal about us, that that is putting us at a severe disadvantage."

"True," the CNS agreed as the turbolift pod came to a stop and the doors opened.  "Plus we have to take into account their need for volunteers and the strange power they seem to have in encouraging others into becoming one."

"See," Mitshiba added as she stepped into the corridor followed by Lopez, "you are starting to sound like our First Officer and Intel Liaison Officer."

"Guess all I can do is hope that in their deliberation they will end up sounding a little like us and give the J'Den a little bit more room to show us that they are not as dark as they thought them to be," the Ship Counselor added as she shot a glance to the unseen sister walking next to her."

"I am heading back to the lab to do a little more research on this power the males have," the CSciO said, the friendliness of her voice making it easy to understand that she had invited the CNS to follow.

"Just go with her," Amanda huffed, motioning her sister to follow the other woman. "It won't do you any harm to speak to someone other than your missing sister who is not actually here."

"Alright," Adriana smiled, "maybe we can find something that will tip the balance of this debate in our favor."

"I doubt it," Misaki laughed. "Aside for trying to understand how this power actually works, my main goal is to find some way to protect us from it.  I am sure that the last thing the captain wants is to lose any member of her crew to the volunteer recruitment efforts of the J'Den."

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P057: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 3 - 2000 ("More Pieces To The Puzzle")
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"More Pieces To The Puzzle"
[previous post (The Inside Scoop)]
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Setting: USS RAMAN, Observation Lounge
Stardate: 31201.2000

The members of the senior staff who had taken part in the away mission to the RAMAN had been called for an emergency meeting by Captain Iverson. More information had been obtained on the J'Den and the BASTET's CO wanted to make sure that all everything had been known by all.

"Can we trust this Lenaas?" Sarena asked, her suspicions on the J'Den still very much alive.

"There was no reason for her to lie to me," Misaki replied trying to come up with a single reason as to why the J'Den woman would have actively sought her out only to lie.  The information provided by Lenaas had provided the crew with a new understanding of Shutaar, so it was difficult to see how this information, had it been a lie, benefitted the J'Den or woman who had stepped forward in any way.

Janeel sighed as she leaned back into her chair.  "Maybe Lenaas is trying to undermine Shutaar's authority or even maybe wanting to discredit her so that she would no longer be an acceptable leader giving others, such as Lenaas the opportunity to take on the position."

"Do you always look on the absolute darker side of things?" Ensign Lopez asked not at all having expected the Intel Liaison Officer to answer.

"I cannot claim to be a perfect judge of character, nor can I claim being able to tell when someone is lying to me each and every time, but in this particular case I truly do not believe that Lenaas was lying to me," Misaki added in defence of both her statement and the J'Den who had approached her a few hours past.

"At the very least her statement to Lieutenant Mitshiba does seem to confirm the special ability the males have," Captain Iverson said supporting by the same token the belief of their CSciO that Lenaas had indeed been telling the truth.

"The best way to have a lie be believed is to surround it with the truth," the ILO added, siding with the Executive Officer in the distrust of the woman and race in general.

"I honestly don't know how you sleep at night with you always imagining the worst in any situation and people," the CNS said in absolute disbelief.  Although Adriana had known the ILO for some time, never had she seen Commander Janeel be so negative about a situation or individual.

"This meeting is for everyone to offer their opinion Ensing," Captain Iverson stated, welcoming everything that everyone had to offer be it overly optimistic or absolutely pessimistic.  "The universe is a dangerous place as we all know, and unfortunately there is a great number of people out there who will do everything in their power to achieve a self serving goal.  That said, we have to be able to keep an open mind and try to identify those who only wish to do the right thing."

"Figuring out which is which in any dimension is never an easy task," Commander Valentine added, her own experience as well as that of their Commanding Officer having proven this time and time again.

"True," Selene agreed, "and by the looks of things we have a clean split in our opinion as to which side of this issue Lenaas truly stands on.  Is she trying to mislead us for some yet to be determined personal or even political gain, or did she only wish to warn us as to Shutaar's methods and goal to safeguard her people at all cost?"

On one side of the table, the Executive Officer and Intel Liaison Officer having used their own knowledge and experienced, had believed that Lenaas had acted for another reason, one that they had yet to discover.  On the other side, the Ship's Counselor and Chief Science Officer had opted to believe in the woman's good intentions based on what she had endured, seen and experienced as a volunteer.

"I think the best way to resolve this matter will be for me to speak with this Lenaas," the Captain said as she stood from the head chair.  "After that we will need to set a meeting with Shutaar, one that preferably does not involve having any of the RAMAN's survivors or worst a male J'Den present.  Dismiss."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Setting: USS RAMAN, Bridge
Stardate: 31201.2010

Captain Iverson had remained behind in the Observation Lounge to contemplate the situation while the rest of the officers exited through the command deck of the BASTET.

"Maybe I should try to get some more information from the J'Den," Janeel whispered to the Executive Officer.  "A little undercover work maybe."

"As much as I would be more than happy to sanction such a mission, there are two main problems that stand in our way," Valentine returned in the same whispered voice.

"Two?"

"The first being that any female crew member would be highly vulnerable alone on the RAMAN. A simple encounter with a male, be it human or J'Den could led to them becoming a volunteer before anyone would realise what happened," Sarena detailed having stopped to let the other two officer lave the bridge on the nearest turbolift.  "The second is that Captain Iverson has not agreed to such a mission and would very likely make a *volunteer* of whoever had taken part in such an unauthorized endeavor."

"I was not really planning on doing it," Janeel quickly offered in her own defence, just in case the Executive Officer had believed the ILO capable of acting in such a manner on her own. 

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M02-P056: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 3 - 1800 ("The Inside Scoop")
///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 8, Mess Hall
Stardate: 31201.1800

Their report had been given to Captain Iverson leaving her with the final decision as to what they would do or say next to the J'Den.  The drive that had made Aki consider so vividly to join the race had nearly completely subsided leaving the CSciO with unanswerable questions.

Always the scientist, Aki reviewed the results of the scans that had been taken during the quarantine while a bowl of spicy Andorian noodles sat on the table in front of her.  Although her eyes were scanning the displayed data, Mitshiba's mind had been traveling through time to what had happened and what could have happened?

For a warrior race, one that had survive multiple occupations turning them into slave, the ability to heal at a tremendous rate had been almost logical.  The transfer of genetic memories could also be looked upon in the same light as few people could pass on their knowledge to the next generation while under the crushing heels of their masters.

These abilities had been allowed the J'Den to continue as a race, but for the CSciO there had simply not been enough time for these changes to occur naturally.  Something, or someone had manipulated the race's genome to grant them the gifts that they now possessed.

"May I join you?" A female member of the J'Den asked.  "My name is Lenaas, I was on the BASTET when the Captain ordered all transport to and from the ship to be suspended and I have just recently been permitted once again to go about the ship," she explained adding a quick glance to the security officer standing immediately behind her.  By the looks of things whatever freedom she had been granted had been limited and heavily supervised.

"Please, I have a few questions that I hope you will be able to answer," Aki said inviting the woman to join her at the Mess Hall table.

"I figured you would, that is why I sought you out."

The admission of the J'Den took Aki by surprise, wondering why suddenly someone had been so willing to answer questions.  As friendly as Shutaar had been, many of her earlier answers had been evasive leaving everyone to feel like something was being kept from them, a concept that was only further proven after their dinner on board the RAMAN.

"Does Shutaar know that you are here?" The question from Aki had been the most logical one, hinting as to whether or not the answers she would received had been sanctioned from higher up or given from a single individual who had her own reasons to share her knowledge.

"Shutaar granted me permission to come on board the BASTET," the confirmation oddly enough did not seem to reflect the expression on Lenaas' face.  "I was to observe and see if I could interest female members of your crew to join us."

"I guess that you were not as successful as she might have hoped you to be."

"Actually I did not even try," this time Lenaas's words matched her expression, one of sadness and disapproval.  "I know that this is the only way for the J'Den to survive but there is a part of me that believes there to be a better way."

"The genetic memories that you received when you accepted to become one of them were not as overwhelming and allowed more of your original personality to remain present," the CSciO hesitantly theorized only to see a weak smile appear on the woman's lips indicating that she had been correct in some if not every way.

"You understand us better that you realize," Lenaas confirmed further. "The genetic memories transferred from host to host have been known to be very powerful taking new volunteers several weeks and even months to adjust.  For some, like Shutaar, these memories can be traced all the way back to the last enslavement of the J'Den.  In my case, the host who passed on her memories to me suffered from serious head trauma and although she physically survived, many memories were lost."

"May I asked what you remember of the person you were before volunteering?" Aki questioned. Not only would this allow her to test the extent of the woman's retention of her original persona but also hopefully see what set of circumstances had led the woman to volunteer and become Lenaas.

"I remember very little of the childhood," the J'Den woman replied, her voice sounding as if she was speaking about another person who had long ago died.  "More like snapshots of distant memories.  I remember encountering a J'Den woman by the name of Trinaal along with her male servant.  I also remember being overwhelmed with the idea of becoming a member of the race.  By the end of the next sunrise I had volunteered and Lenaas was born."

Mitshiba concluded by the account that the theory of the males having a strong psychological influence on other females leading them to accept becoming volunteers had been formed on solid ground. There still lacked empirical evidence but the more the crew of the BASTET learned about the J'Den, the more this seemed to be the way of the race.

"Don't get me wrong," Lenaas continued, "I do not feel any regret for making the decision to volunteer. My life had been forfeited and it was only through chance that I met Trinaal. What she gave me was the chance to a new life and new identity.  What I object to is the way that Shutaar tries to recruit volunteers, trying to add the memories of others to their own in the hopes of forming a more prosperous race, one that would not only never again become slaves, but be able to fight off any and all who would even think of doing this to us or anyone else."

"That would be why Shutaar has such an interest in my dimension and more specifically the Federation," Aki responded, this little talk having provided her with an invaluable insight into the mind of Shutaar and the survival drive of the J'Den.  "We do not endorse the belief of any race being subjugated by another. To us, all are equal and deserve the chance to evolve as nature had intended."

"Shutaar would say that she agrees," the J'Den woman's voice bordered on loathing as she spoke, "but the truth is that she is willing to let others live as they will as long as her people's future is secured and beyond threat.  Her leadership has allowed for us to grow in ways that I cannot measure, but this has also caused some of us to question the methods used.  She means well, but hundreds of years of desperation has taken its toll on her.  I would suggest for you to be careful when dealing with her, whatever her words may be."

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M02-P055: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 3 - 1600 ("Prime Debate")
-=-=-
"Prime Debate"
[Previous post: "Finding Something Unexpected"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Counselling Department
Stardate: 31201.1600

With the isolation of the away team no longer in effect, Adriana had returned to her department to consider the impact of their findings.  Lieutenant Mitshiba, Commander Najeel and Commander Valentine had gone to brief the Captain as to what had been discovered and it would be up to the BASTET's CO to decide what to do next.  During that time it was the Counselor's job to evaluate all of the possible social impacts on the J'Den culture so as to offer recommendations to the Captain should she be inclined to ask for them.

The Prime Directive was clear, no Federation ship or individual onboard said ship could interfere with the natural evolution of a species said to be technologically inferior.  This meant that the most important rule of the Federation did not apply in this case as the J'Den had proven to possess technology equal if not superior to their own.  Such a fact though had not been enough to ease Adriana's thoughts on the matter.

For hundreds of years the J'Den males had been looked upon as less than second class citizens, worthy of only the most menial of tasks. This had come to be because of their history as a slave race, a status that was overturned due to the efforts of the females of the race.  For a reason or reasons that seemed unclear to everyone, the women of the J'Den had kept the males around even though they had no role to play with the race's survival and even less in regards to procreation.

That would all change should Captain Iverson decide to inform Shutaar and Kiraal of their findings.  Even with years of Academy study on the subject of social changes caused by a single events, Adriana could not fully map out how the revelation of the actual role of the males would impact on the alien culture. Even if the BASTET's discovery only proved to be partially correct the impact on the way of life of the J'Den would be immense.

"Why are you beating yourself up over this," Amanda asked. "You hate the way the J'Den have been treating their males. This is exactly what you wanted; a reason for this culture to change their way of life.  This is the reason the males need to step forward and start the journey to being treated as equals."

"We cannot be that narrow minded," Adriana angrily said, arguing once again with the twin sister who was not actually there.  "This change would affect the culture at its deepest foundation. Yes it may prove to be beneficial to the males in the short run, but we have no way of knowing how this will affect them as a whole."

"That's not yours to be concerned about," Amanda's voice was cold and sharp.

"Isn't it?" the twin snapped back, her anger only growing with each word spoken.  "Who are we to destroy hundreds of years of evolution and cultural growth?  We may not agree with what they are doing or even why they are doing it, but it was never the Federation's mandate to impose its way of life on other cultures."

"The Federation doesn't even exist here," the illusion of the twin sister continued, further fueling the Counselor's rage.

"So just because we are in another dimension it means that we can through out any and all of our moral obligations?" Had Amanda been actually there Adriana would have likely shoved her down onto the nearest couch to further make her point. "You are right, why should we care? Once we have sowed the seed that could destroy their culture we will be heading back to our dimension where we can just forget about everything that we saw and heard here.  Who knows, history might even look upon the BASTET and its crew as heroes for having destroyed a race that could have grown into a threat to every other dimension."

"Don't you think you are going a little overboard?" The twin sighed at the over dramatic display given by the CNS.

"Maybe I am," Adriana's tone had dropped drastically, almost to the point of her crying.  "Maybe this fundamental change in their culture will create a race that will prove to be a positive addition, not only to this dimension but to ours and countless others as well.  But that's the problem, there is no way for us to know how this knowledge is going to change the J'Den in the long run."

"The best you can do is explain to the Captain how you feel and why," Amanda said as she approached her sister, the look on their faces leaving it clear that if they could they would have shared a long hug.  "The final call will be the Captain's, but you owe it to her and yourself to make sure she knows how you feel, not as a person but as the Ship's Counselor."

"You are right," Adriana said as she forced her tears back.

"I know," the twin continued in a teasing way.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P054: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 3 - 1430 ("Finding Something Unexpected")
=-=
"Finding Something Unexpected"
[previous post was "Emergency Meeting" by the very helpful Karen]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 5, Exobiology Lab
Stardate: 31201.1430

"Between all of the blood tests and questions I am truly starting to think that there is something wrong with me," Janeel said with a growl, the woman having had enough about the entire deal.  Being confined to a single room for 5 hours had been just about as much as the ILO / Mission Specialist could take.

"We have to make sure that whatever happened is not a danger to ourselves or to the rest of the crew," Commander Valentine sternly said in a way that reminded the complaining woman of her duties to the rest of the BASTET, not to mention that they all had received specific orders from their Captain.

"Well," Misaki started as she returned with the latest results of their blood tests.  "I cannot find anything in our blood that would explain what we experienced.  We all, at varying degrees, felt this drive to at least consider joining the J'Den."

"So there is nothing wrong with our blood," Janeel said as if pointing out a fact that she had already known for quite some time.

"I would not go that far," the Mitshiba shyly said, "at least not in regards to your blood Commander."

"What's wrong with my blood?" Janeel demanded before realizing what Mitshiba had likely found, a detail about the ILO that few knew about.  It had made sense for the ship's CMO to be aware of this, but no one had ever expected the CSciO to run any sort of blood analysis on a sample provided by the Allasomorph.

"Commander Janeel is more than she appears," the First Officer stated, she too having forgotten about the ILO's unique talent and how it would seem strange to someone unaware of this fact.

"I am a Daledian," Janeel admitted.

"Daledian?" Ensign Lopez repeated not knowing off hand about the race or its unique ability.

"I'm an allasomorph," the ILO / Mission Specialist explained.  "I can change the way I look," Janeel added before demonstrating the ability by taking on the shape of Shutaar.  Janeel could have taken on several other forms, but the J'Den had seemed to be the best and safest choice at the moment, plus the alien had been the one that the Commander had studied most recently making the transformation that much easier.

"Well that explains these results," Misaki sad wide eyed with shock.  "Might have made my job easier if you had told me this earlier. I reran the tests half a dozen times to make sure that it wasn't me making a mistake.

"Sorry about that," Janeel said in heartfelt honesty.  "It was believed best to limit that knowledge to only a few of the crew.  Given some of the telepathic species out there, my ability to take on another form needed to be kept as secret as possible," the ILO / Mission Specialist explained as she regained the form that everyone knew her by.

"So this is not your true for," Adriana said, curious to see if the ILO would show them the true and never before seen form.

"To be honest, I don't think I could change back even if I wanted," Janeel stated in a sadden tone.  "My people are able to keep these forms for days at a time, maybe even weeks with training.  I have managed to keep certain forms for months making it more difficult for me to take on a new form.  I have to research and study an intended new persona before I can take on their appearance, and after having been so many people over the years, I cannot remember who I was."

"That's horrible," Adriana said, trying for a moment to imagine how it would be for her to forget who she was, and in doing so forget the sister she had been so desperate to one day find.

"I will admit that it is an interesting ability and I can see why the Captain had wanted to keep it a secret." Mitshiba's understanding and acceptance touched Janeel in a way that she had not expected, and for that the ILO found herself most grateful.

"With the blood work done without an answer, what else can we look into?" the First Officer asked wanting to get back to the search for clues and possibly an end to their segregation from the rest of the crew.

"Psychologically speaking," Lopez began, "there seems to be nothing wrong with any of us. Whatever caused this sudden acceptance with the idea of becoming a J'Den seems to have vanished.  I did notice that my own questions and curiosity about the process had diminished over the hours."

Janeel took one of the PADDs sitting on a nearby work desk and called up some information.  "Maybe we are dealing with a very specific type of pheromone, one that would not show up on any of our scans.  During the dinner with Shutaar and Kiraal, who was sitting the closest to either woman?"

"Ensign Lopez and myself," Commander Valentine replied perplexed as neither of the two women had demonstrated a desire or curiosity to join the J'Den as strong as Lieutenant Mitshiba.

"What if it were the males?" the CNS proposed.  "During the dinner I clearly remember a few of the males being very close and friendly with Misaki. It struck me as surprising given how shy they were acting towards Shutaar and Kiraal.  It would also explain why I was the second most affected as I was the closest to the door the men used to bring the plates in and out."

"Neither Shutaar or Kiraal mentioned anything about the males of the J'Den possessing any such ability," the ILO / Mission Specialist pointed out in dispute of the offered theory.  "Plus, those men are *Human*, not J'Den."

"Maybe so, but it would make sense for the males of the J'Den to have some role to play in the continuation of their race," Misaki continued, the CSciO finding it more and more likely that they had stumbled onto something important.  "The women have all the powers; regeneration, smarts and genetic memories. It makes no sense that nature would leave the males to be completely useless in the sustainability of a race, be it from our dimension or any other."

"So you are suggesting that the male J'Den somehow manage to entice other women to join their race?" the ILO / Mission Specialist gasped in disbelief.

"The male survivors of the RAMAN have very likely been around both male and female J'Den. They themselves might not be able to produce whatever pheromone or chemical that is causing this reaction, but I would be willing to bet that they are carriers," Misaki continued. The more the CSciO tried to explain what she believed, the more she came to realise that it was more than a likely possibility. It simply made sense.

"Confined living space and the air circulation was clearly not working at full strength," Sarena detailed with a nod of her head showing her agreement with the theory having been presented by Lieutenant Mitshiba.  "Not only would it explain why we felt the way we did, but it accounts for why I was the most affected and defines the role the males play in the procreation of the race."

"So why would Shutaar or Kiraal say anything about this to us?" Janeel asked having taken on the role of devil's advocate in this case.

"It is very possible that neither one of them thought of it as having been worth mentioning or they might simply not be aware of the role the males play in the J'Den's continued existence," Ensign Lopez offered, her duties as the ship's CNS having been to observe and understand people beyond their ability to understand themselves.  "Looking back at the history of the J'Den as described to us by both Shutaar and Kiraal, the males were pushed out being seen as a hinderance to the race's continued existence, but they still kept them near by. Maybe subconsciously, through whatever genetic memory had been passed down, they were aware of a need for them without knowing what that need had been.  It would also go a long way to explain how the J'Den women are able to convince other women to join their race with only the promise of rapid regeneration and the passing down of genetic memories."

"If this proves to be true," Commander Valentine grinned, "it might change the way the women J'Den look upon their male counterparts."

"Given what we saw," the CNS noted with sadness, "any change would be a good one. No one deserves to be treated the way that they are."

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P053: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 3 - 0935 ("Emergency Meeting")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Emergency Meeting"
[previous post (Counseling House Call)]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS RAMAN, Captain's Ready Room
Stardate: 31201.0935

It was only a few minutes after the Ensign Lopez and Lt. Mitshiba had walked into the Captain's Ready Room that the Executive Officer had been called in to join them.  For two senior officers to go in at the same time to see their CO had been a hint that something might have been wrong. To have Commander Valentine join them had made that into an absolute certainty.

"Yes Captain," Sarena said as she walked in to see the other two women standing in front of Captain Iverson, a troubled expression on their faces.  "Is everything alright?"

"Tell her what you have told me," the Captain ordered, the weight of what she had been told showing on her expression.

"Following our dinner with the J'Den, certain members of the away team have been thinking about the offer made to join them," Lopez said.

"You are not actually considering it, are you?" Sarena gasped, sure that the Captain had called her in to learn of one or both women's decision to leave the BASTET and become J'Den.

"I was," Mitshiba said almost in tears, "that's the problem."

"I'm confused.  You were considering it and now are not?"

"It appears that things are more complicated than that," Captain Iverson added.  "Lt. Mitshiba felt an uncontrollable drive and it was thanks to Ensign Lopez that she was able to resist it."

"Are we suspecting some sort of mind control?" Valentine asked already thinking as to how she would take care of this situation in the quickest and most effective manner at their disposal.

"We are not sure," the Captain replied.

"That was the reason why we suggested to suspend all transport to and from the RAMAN until we can understand what is happening a little more," Ensign Lopez explained, wraping her arms around the CSciO who was still shaken by the thoughts that she had in regards to becoming a J'Den.

"We can take the transporters off-line while we keep an eye on the RAMAN. That way no one will be able to come or go," Valentine offered.

"Based on what I have been told, I would add locking the shuttle bays, just in case," the Captain added.

"The drive is that powerful?" Sarena asked, puzzled and a little scared.

"It is," Misaki confirmed.

"If you are both up to it," the Captain said addressing the CNS and CSciO, "I would like for you to head the research into this matter. You know what you are looking for as far as symptoms and drive.  The rest of the away team, meaning Commander Valentine and Commander Janeel will be at your disposal until an answer can be found."

"Yes Captain," all three women in the room with their CO said before looking at each other as if trying to figure out what their next step would be.

"I am sorry Commander," Ensign Lopez apologise, the CNS feeling bad in what had happened as well as what might be required to find the reason and hopefully a cure for what they had discovered.

"As long as you keep me from getting those weird horns on my head, there is no need for an apology," Sarena offered adding a smile to reassure the CNS that everything was fine.  "Where would you like to perform whatever tests and work you will need?"

"We could return to the Exobiology lab," Mitshiba suggested.

"You can try to find some sort of biochemical reason that would explain this while I try to find a more psychological reason," Adriana agreed.

"Then it's settled," the Executive Officer nodded before reaching for hr comm badge. "Valentine to Janeel."

=/\= Go ahead Commander. =/\=

"Report to the Exobiology lab on Deck 5, we will explain why once we are there."

=/\= Why do I have the feeling this has something to do with the J'Den, =/\= the ILO sighed, her instinct having been right on the money.

"See you there," was all that Sarena said in return not wanting to alarm the woman.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M02-P052: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 3 - 0920 ("Counseling House Call")
-=-=-
"Counseling House Call"
[Previous post: "The Allure"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 5, en route to Exobiology lab
Stardate: 31201.0920

"Was it may or did she sound scared?" Amanda asked while keeping pace with her twin, not that it was all that difficult for a mental projection that originated from the CNS herself.

"Not scared, but definitely concerned," Adriana whispered not wanting to have someone overhear the Ensign speaking to no one.

"Maybe she saw something or someone that isn't actually there," the twin jabbed with a grin. "Would be nice to know that you are not the only crazy one on this ship."

Ensign Lopez bit her lip and clenched her fist. Had her sister actually been there the CNS would have very likely decked her, but then again had Amanda been physically there behind her sister, there would not have been any need for Adriana to question her sanity or to feel that the words spoken by the illusion had hit a little too close to home.

"Lieutenant Mitshiba?" Adriana asked when she walked into the lab, not sure where she would find the woman or even in what state she would do so.

"Right here," the Chief Science Officer replied from behind one of the work stations.  "Thank you for coming so fast."

"It did sound like it was urgent," Adriana said while rapidly approaching Misaki who did appear troubled.

"I need your help to know if there is something wrong with me, at least on a psychological level," Lieutenant Mitshiba said as the Counselor came to stand right in front of her.

"In other words she wants you to confirm that she's crazy," Amanda  added, the illusion of the CNS' twin having taken position directly behind the troubled woman who had reached out for help.

"I will do what I can," Adriana said shooting a very quick glare to the sister who had not actually been there.  "Tell me what happened."

"I was thinking of the J'Den and their seeking volunteers," Misaki began. "Then I started thinking about their ability to transfer memories genetically to those volunteers. The thoughts were so consuming that I had to come here to do more research on the matter."

"Sounds perfectly normal," the CNS pointed out.  "I know I spent a good part of the night thinking about it."

"There is thinking about it out from a scientific, or in your case a social aspect, but I have been thinking about it from a volunteer aspect," the CSciO said, concern clear in her voice.  "I can't explain it but I feel drawn to wanting to to this, but it makes no sense."

"I will admit that I too have been curious about what it would feel like to have so much knowledge and memories suddenly become available," Adriana admitted in hopes of offering support to the woman who was visibly growing more agitated.

"You don't understand," Mikasi said almost yelling to Lopez.  "I feel like I could beam down to the RAMAN and sign up as a volunteer *now* without as much as a second though.  It feels like something is drawing me into doing this, something that I can't control."

"It's official," Amanda nodded. "She's crazier than you are."

"I am sure that there is a logical explanation," Adriana suggested as she reached for her comm badge.  "Ensign Lopez to Captain Iverson."

=/\= Go ahead Counselor. =/\=

"I would like to suggest that any and all beam down to and from the RAMAN be suspended for the time being. Lieutenant Mitshiba and I would like to meet with you as soon as possible to explain why we are making this request,"

=/\= Do you need help or an escort? =/\=

Adriana took a moment to look at the CSciO who after a few seconds shook her head to confirm that they would not need any help from a security detachment to make it.

"No Captain, we are fine but it would be to everyone's advantage if we could speak to you quickly."

=/\= Fine, my ready room, now. =/\=

"On our way Captain," Adriana said.

"Thank you Captain," Misaki added as she took hold of the CNS' hand, the grip having been far more desperate than Ensign Lopez would have ever expected it to be.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P051: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 3 - 0900 ("The Allure")
"The Allure"
Previous post: "Sisterly Discussion"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 5, Exobiology Lab
Stardate: 31201.0900

The dreams of the Asian woman had been filled with strange metamorphosis and visions of changing DNA.  The discussion at the RAMAN's dinner table had left an impression on the CSciO, one that had lasted throughout the night and into the morning leading Aki to the exobiology lab immediately following breakfast.
 
There had been a few accounts in the Starfleet databanks of races being able to use retroviruses to superimpose their genetic code over someone else's, but the J'Den had proven to be unique in that aspect because of the memory transfer.  The method as to how the original host's memories were kept intact had been something of a scientific mystery as biological science dictated that the host's personality should be completely overwritten by the new genetic code and the memories it brought along.

The passing on of genetic memories, for those few races able to claim such an amazing skills, could easily be explained through biological procreation.  Since the genes of both parents were present in the offspring, it was logical to assume that the memories of at least one parent would be present if not both.  For the J'Den though the 'offspring' was the creation of a base genetic material provided by a host, material that would see its genetic code rewritten to match that of the donor.  Yet, as complete as the transformation appeared on the surface, Kiraal appearing nothing like Captain Elizabeth Keenan, the woman's memories had survived the transformation.

Aki had approached this scientific mystery with the hope of finding a way to replicate the extreme rapid biological regeneration in Humanoids, but after a while she had found her research drifting to trying to identify how the memories of a Humanoid could be preserved genetically.  How much knowledge had been lost over the centuries back on EARTH?  The Asian woman could not help but wonder how the world would have changed had this knowledge been able to be passed on from generation to generation.
 
Yes the J'Den may have had a shorter life span, but thanks to their rapid regeneration and genetic memory transfer to the next 'generation', the race held an advantage that few others could claim.  That seed quickly grew in Mitshiba's thoughts and soon made her consider the allure of the offer of becoming a member of the J'Den.

"Mitshiba to Lopez."

=/\= Go Ahead. =/\=

"Do you have a moment? I would like to talk."

=/\= Of course, where would you like to meet? =/\=

"How about here in the Exobiology lab?"

=/\= Alright, when would be a good time for you? =/\=

"Actually, if you don't mind, I would appreciate if you came here right away."

=/\= Alright, I will be right there. =/\=

Aki stared at her research and suddenly wondered why she had summoned the Counselor?  The thought of accepting to be a volunteer had been an interesting one but certainly not to the point where she had actually considered it, or had she?  Had her reaching out to Adriana been a subconscious effort to counter this desire to experience the procedure and transformation first hand?  Mitshiba had all been for scientific curiosity but this had seemed to be a little on the extreme side of things.

The Asian woman began to question and even doubt herself. What had taken over her?  Yes she had an acute interest in other races but not to the point of wanting to become one.  Something was happening and in some ways Aki began to fear it.  As long as the CSciO remained in the Exobiology lab there had been little danger of her acting on this strange feeling that oddly enough seemed to be increasing in strength with each passing moment.

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M02-P050: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 3 - 0800 ("Sisterly Discussion")
-=-=-
"Sisterly Discussion"
[Previous post: "Morning Report"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Ensign Lopez's Quarters
Stardate: 31201.0800

The away team had been told to get some rest. That had proven to be easier said than done. Throughout the night Adriana tossed and turned unable to get any real sleep, her mind filled with thoughts about Shutaar, Kiraal and the J'Den.

During the night Ensign Lopez had even thought that had she not been the Counselor, she might have seeked the counsel of the ship's CNS.  Since she was the person in question, Adriana had only one other person to talk to in order to sort out her thoughts on the race and all that she had learned about them during last night's dinner.

"You do realize how ironic this is, right?" Amanda said to her sister as she stepped out of the shower, the two of them having spent the majority of the night talking about the J'Den.

"What?" Adriana said sarcastically as she went into the bedroom to get dressed, "That I am actually talking to myself or that I actually feel like I have a better understanding of that race because of it?"

"Both. Either. You're the Ship's Counsellor, so you tell me."

"I remember Profession Surol back at the Academy," the sister said to her sister as she returned to the living area.  "As a Vulcan he considered speaking to one's self a sign of mental instability, yet he advocated throughout all of his classes the advantages of voicing issues out loud to better understand them."

"No wonder you turned out the way you did," Amanda laughed from the couch. "You learned how to be crazy from your own teachers."

"I am not crazy," Adriana snapped at her sister realizing only after the fact that she had been ready to argue with the image of her sister who had vanished almost 20 years ago.  "Alright, maybe I am."

"Have some breakfast," the twin suggested, the illusion having moved from the couch to the dining table in the blink of an eye.  "You'll feel better on a full stomach, and we can continue talking about Kiraal."

As the BASTET's CNS Ensign Lopez had found the entire story surrounding Kiraal to be most interesting. Captain Elizabeth Keenan, in a last ditch effort to escape from the clutches of death had volunteered to become a J'Den.  That by itself had been a valued look into the way most Humanoids feared death and would be willing to do anything to prolong their lives.

What happened next proved to be just as interesting to the Counselor as she discussed with her sister the superimposition of the Kiraal persona over that of Captain Keenan.  Some parts of the original personality had still been there explaining why a trans-dimensional call for help had been sent, but the way the nine men had been living showed that the cultural ideas Kiraal had were dominant.

"You do know that both Kiraal and Shutaar are hoping that some of the women on board the BASTET will volunteer to join the J'Den," Amanda said while sitting across the table from her sister.  "You also know how interesting that prospect is since you are, in some minute way, considering it."

"I am not!" Adriana snapped, this time more than willing to argue with the image of her sister.  "I joined Starfleet to find you! I would never be able to do that if I was stuck in this dimension as a member of another race doing everything they can to survive."

"Alright," the twin offered raising her hands in surrender.  "I was just testing, but you do have to agree that the offer does come across as an interesting one and that there are some on the BASTET who might see this as a golden opportunity."

"There is no way the Captain is going to make this public knowledge to the rest of the crew," the CNS said in a dismissive manner.

"Of course not," Amanda grinned, "because there is no way that a story like that is going to be somehow leaked out and spread through the entire ship in like 2 or 3 hours ago.  What Captain Iverson is likely to do is not allow anyone to accept this claiming that it would be a breach of security, but you know that the crew is already aware of what was hinted to at that dinner."

"The crew's focus needs to be on bringing the last survivors back and find something, if we can, that could help us deal with the Neo-Essentialist threat back in our own dimension," Adriana said wanting to bring the discussion as well as her own thoughts back on the most important issue at hand.

"I am sure that the Captain thinks the same," the twin sister reassured.  "We both know that she will do everything possible to get back to our dimension with anything and everything that might give the Federation an advantage if any such thing exists here."

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P049: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 3 - 0730 ("Morning Report")
=-=
"Morning Report"
[previous post was "Identity" by the superbly brilliant Dawn]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 2, Captain's Mess Hall
Stardate: 31201.0730

The evening past had been a long one filled with surprises and revelations. The away team could have easily remained on the RAMAN for a few more days to sort everything out but it had been decided that returning to the BASTET had been in everyone's best interest.

"Rapid healing, genetic manipulation as well as the transfer of memories through genes. Looks like there were a few things omitted from the information we had been provided by the J'Den," Captain Iverson said as she prepared to enjoye a one-on-one breakfast with the ILO / Mission Specialist.

"Some, if not all, of those details might still be secret to us if it was not for Lieutenant Mitshiba's quick thinking and reasoning," Janeel said giving credit where credit had been due.  "It was her questions that opened the door to Shutaar revealing more about her race, that she had wanted to or not."

"I am guessing that you still do not trust our host and benefactor," the Captain added between bites.

"Commander Valentine is the one who is not trusting them," Janeel specified, "I only point out that the J'Den appear to be reluctant in talking about themselves and their abilities.  That said though, I do understand the thinking behind this. After hundred of years as a slave race to a multitude of invaders they were brought to the edge of extinction. Now, 600 years later, they have clawed their way back using whatever means and technology left behind to reclaim their place in this dimension as well as their own identity as a distinct race."

"The question is can we trust them and accept the stated reason why we are here as being the truth," Iverson continued, this little one-on-one meeting having been meant for her to get as much information as possible on the J'Den and the RAMAN.

"I believe that we can trust them, but I would not be surprised if there were other reasons that led them to bringing us here," the ILO / Mission Specialist stated.  "In observing us the J'Den have seen what the Federation stands for and the kind of people and threats we are forced to deal with. Richard Edgerton being the perfect example as to why I believe the J'Den are now and will continue to be slow in trusting other races.  Their primary focus at this time is their own survival."

"Which is why they enlist volunteers to bolster their number," the Captain said, strongly echoing the misgivings her First Officer had demonstrated during the entire diner with the survivors of the RAMAN.

"Their methods may be alien, no pun intended, but you cannot disregard the benefits the change provides to those who accept the transformation," Janeel said finding herself arguing even more *for* the J'Den.  "Aside from the obvious physical benefits, the passing on genetic memory means that the race only grows in knowledge with each new member that voluntarily joins them."

"Why only the women?" Selene pondered out loud.

"According to Shutaar, the transformation process is just as effective for males as it is for females, but there are a couple of differences which have led the race to focus their recruiting efforts towards women," the ILO / Mission Specialist detailed recalling the conversation from the previous evening.  "Male volunteers can also be made into J'Den but without the advantages of both the rapid regeneration and genetic memories.  With these two aspects removed from the equation, it is understandable that females from other races are far more inclined to agree to the transformation than their male counterparts."

"So the nine officers left are those who refused to join the J'Den after the crash of their ship," the Captain logically concluded. "Still their decision should not have placed them in such a disadvantageous position, their living conditions are barely adequate."

"You have to understand that throughout their occupation and slavery, the women were forced to rely on themselves, and afterward this separation of the sexes became even more prominent following the male's inability to father children. Once a woman accepts to become a J'Den, her mind is flooded with memories of a time and people who had no need for man.  I am sure that Captain Keenan still cares very much for her fellow shipmates, but I am equally certain that the multiple lifetimes of memories that are conflicting with these sentiments have made it very difficult for her to acknowledge the men as she once did."  Janeel explained finding that the more she tried to convince her Captain, the more she discovered the sound reasoning that had led the race to be what it was today.

"When will the survivors of the RAMAN be ready to leave and return with us?" Iverson inquired, surprised that they had not already been on board the BASTET.

"That is where I think things get complicated," the ILO / Mission Specialist sighed.  "I believe that Shutaar and Kiraal are both trying one last effort at convincing the men to go along with the transformation. We are talking about the continued existence of their race, but I believe that there is something more and that the J'Den woman are using this to keep us here longer. Unfortunately I have not figured out why, yet."

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P048: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 2 - 2245 ("Identity")
"Identity"
Previous post: "Survival"

///^\\\
Setting: USS RAMAN, Dining Area
Stardate: 31200.2245

The entrance of Kiraal, or as she had been known before her transformation as Captain Elizabeth Keenan, had been a surprise to everyone in more ways than one.  The woman's account of her own change into a J'Den had helped greatly to answer many of the questions that the away team had brought to diner with them.

"You said that the procedure actually saved your life?" Aki asked wondering as to the extent of the woman's injury at the time and if whether or not it had actually been the transformation that had saved her.

"The life span of the J'Den may be a shorter but our lives are not hindered by sickness or injuries," Shutaar said sounding relieved that the secret of her race had come out and seemingly well received, at least so far.

"After the crash," Kiraal began," I found myself with both broken legs, four broken ribs, a shattered arm and a pierced lung.  Needless to say that without a functioning Sickbay the odds were clearly against me.  The J'Den found us and offered basic medical help but because of their quasi non-existent needs in that field, there was little they could do."

"The one thing they could do was to offer this transformation," Commander Valentine hissed, the First Officer of the BASTET not having been sold on this entire story.

"Everything was explained to me," Kiraal continued, offering a reassuring smile to the sceptical woman.  "I had only hours to live and I knew that I would lose the person I had been to become someone new, but when faced with certain death the procedure gave me an opportunity that I would not have had any other way." The former Captain Keenan paused and moved to stand next to Shutaar as a show of support.  "The J'Den have an amazing natural regenerative ability," the woman said as she picked up a nearby knife.  "Our bodies can heal pretty much any injury in mere seconds," as the words left her lips the knife was run down the arm of the second J'Den to everyone shock, but even before blood could spill out of the wound it began to close.

"Wow," Janeel gasped. "That would put all of Starfleet Medical out of business."

"That is why our own medical skills and facilities and non-existent," Shutaar added.  "It is why we offer those women who are injured beyond their ability to heal the chance to join us.  In doing so they not only save themselves but give new life to our race."

"Commander Valentine," Kiraal resumed with an even larger smile on her lips, "the ability to heal quickly is not the only thing the J'Den give. Reflexes, speed and mental acuity are all increased, and the best part is the knowledge that we are suddenly given above and beyond what we thought we knew?"

"I don't understand," Aki said not sure if what she had imagined had been anywhere close to reality.  "You keep the knowledge of your previous identity and somehow gain more?"

"Genetic memory," both Kiraal and Shutaar said in unison.

"Part of the process is to take the genetic material from a J'Den," Kiraal continued, "that material is them infused into the new host along with various other chemicals to make the transformation possible.  The memories collected over the lifetime of that J'Den is passed on to the new individual who also retains the memories of their past lives."

"Not quite the same, but along the same idea of what a Trill symbiont would grant to a new host," the CSciO said making the entire process come into clearer perspective.

"Very much like the Trill, the combined memories create a new identity, but because of the large number of lives passed on by the J'Den genes, the host's original identity is usually buried, feeling as a dream, a very realistic dream but a dream nonetheless," Kiraal explained further.

"Alright," Commander Valentine said as if forced into agreeing with what had been said.  "That may explain a great many thing, but it still does not account for why they have been treated this way," the ExO said as she pointed towards the men of the RAMAN who had remained completely silent during this entire conversation.

"That may take a little longer to explain," Shutaar admitted, "but they are part of the reason why you are here.

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M02-P047: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 2 - 2015 ("Survival")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Survival"
[previous post (Too Much Time)]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS RAMAN, Dining Room
Stardate: 31200.2015

Over the last few minutes suspicions had grown in leaps and bounds as far as the J'Den had been concerned.  Sarena had suspected that the overly friendly race had been hiding something but now that the Executive Officer had seen the state of the RAMAN's survivor her doubts had completely vanished. All that was left to do was to figure out *what* they were hiding.

Five of the nine survivors sat with the away team and the one and only D'Jen they had so far met, the other four crewmembers of the RAMAN had taken on the task to serve the impressive feast that had been prepared in the honor of the ANUBIS' crew.

"It is with great pleasure that we welcome the away team of the ANUBIS," the man sitting at the end of the table said. The rank insignia of Commander that could still be seen on the decrepit uniform hinted to him having been the highest ranking survivor.

"It is an honor to being here," Sarena offered in return. "Please allow me to introduce you to my team; Lieutenant Commander Janeel, our Mission Specialist; Lieutenant Mitshiba, our Chief Science Officer; Ensign Lopez, our Ship Counselor; and I'm Commander Valentine, Executive Officer."

"I am so sorry," the man said flustered, "where are my manners.  I am Commander John Anderson former First Officer, this is Lieutenant Giles O'Brien, Lieutenant Andrew Stevens, Lieutenant Mike Turner and Lieutenant Shawn Davidson," the man said as he pointed to the corresponding man sitting at the table.  "James, Roberto, Alex and Uri will be serving us."

Sarena found it odd that Commander Anderson had not only referred to himself as the *former* First Officer but had also mentioned the last four crew members by only their first names.

"We are delighted to being here," Valentine added just before the feast was being placed on the table under the hungry eyes of the RAMAN's senior staff.

"The pleasure is ours I assure you," Mike Turner said before grabbing whatever had been closer and devouring it as if he had not eaten in weeks if not months.

"Please enjoy," Shutaar suggested, the pleasantness of her voice not having changed since the first time they had see the J'Den.  "There will be ample time to talk after the feast."

"I have never been one to accept coincidences," Janeel whispered to the away team leader, "and you have to admit that this one ranks pretty high on the weird scale."  Valentine looked back at the ILO with confusion, the woman having noticed something that had skipped the Executive Officer's attention.  "All of the survivors are male, our away team is entirely comprised of females. I wonder what happened to the women of the RAMAN."

The question had been good, and added to the odd behavior of the men at the dining table the mystery had only become larger.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Setting: USS RAMAN, Dining Room
Stardate: 31200.2200

The prepared food had been more than palatable, but judging by the way the men of the RAMAN had devoured everything that they had been able to lay their hands on it had been clear that the taste of the food had not been the only variable at play.

"Commander Anderson," Sarena began once the table had been cleared of what little had been left from the feast.  "You mentioned earlier that the RAMAN had found its way into this dimension and later crashed onto this asteroid, but you never mentioned how either came to be."

"We were being pursued by a hostile force and stumbled into a dimensional vortex that brought us here. The ship was badly damaged and our sensors were non-operational.  We wandered until we became trapped by the gravitational pull of the asteroid and we crashed," John recalled with sadness.  "We lost 17 crewmembers through the vortex and another 42 when we crashed on the asteroid.  If it was not for the J'Den we would have certainly all perished."

"Commander, if I may," Mitshiba jumped in having picked up a possible discrepancy.  "I suspect that the RAMAN was an OBERTH-Class vessel as it was in our dimension."

"It was," the man confirmed before sending a concerned look towards Shutaar who appeared very intrigued by the line of questioning.

"With a standard crew complement of 80, you have accounted for 59 as unfortunate casualties leaving 21 survivors. As we see only 9 of you here I am very curious, as I am sure Commander Valentine is as well, as to the whereabouts of the other 12."  Misaki inquired, the Chief Science Officer having proven her skill and speed in mental math.

"I believe I should be the one to answer and explain this," Shutaar said as she forced her smile to stay as it had been.  "My people suffered for centuries through repeated invasions from other dimensions, and during that time our male population was subjugated to unimaginable extremes. Roughly 600 years ago my people managed to regain our freedom but the legacy left behind by our oppressors made the greater majority of our males to be unable to father children."

"In 600 years your civilization should have vanished without the ability to reproduce," Mitshiba pointed out always being the scientist.  "Unless your lifespan is a lot grater than we were led to believe."

"No, unfortunately our life span is actually short when compared to other races such as Humans," Shutaar sadly admitted.  "For a J'Den to reach their 70s is considered to be a nearly impossible feat."

"Cloning?" Lopez asked, recalling a few Starfleet classes on the subject and the use of such technology to prolong the life of a civilization.

"There were too many issues with creating a pure clone, so our scientists devised another method to keep the J'Den culture alive," Shutaar said allowing for the first time for her smile to disappear from her features.

"You use the females of other races and either replace or alter their genetic code to make them into members of the J'Den race," Mitshiba gasped in admiration and horror.

"This process is *never* forced on others," the J'Den quickly said in defence of their way of life.  "Volunteers are given all of the information available and their decision is respected by all.  In some cases our offer even saves lives.  What we offer is mutual survival."

"Is that why we were brought here?" Serana barked, already thinking that they would have to fight their way back to the BASTET.

"No," another J'Den woman said as she walked into the room, "that is not the reason why you were brought here, and Shutaar is right when she said that the procedure can save lives.  It did for me.  I am Kiraal, but before the crash I was known as Elizabeth Keenan, Commanding Officer of the USS RAMAN."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M05-P034: USS ANUBIS: Maya: Day 2 - 2300 ("Too Much Time")
---
"Too Much Time"
(Previous Post: "Shattered")
---

Setting: NEW ALEXANDRIA, Section C2, Level 3, Observation Area
Stardate: 30200.2300

The ANUBIS was home yet the Shillian Scientist felt completely out of place.  The crew in its entirety had been ordered to disembark to give the repair crews all of the space they would need to not only fix the ship but make it as ready for what was coming.  Most had taken the opportunity to get some overdue rest, some, like Lieutenant Paquette, had joined the repair and upgrade efforts, while Doctor Doyanne and the rest of the medical staff had helped with the injured. The remaining few had desperately tried to make sense of the universe, both on a grand and personal scale.

Without a valid reason to stay on board, Maya had reluctantly migrated to the the base of operation and found her way to the observation and relaxation area reserved for the crew of the ANUBIS.  Rest had not been on her mind though and to be honest the Shillian Scientist had wished to be anywhere else but here.  Her mind and body screamed in silence for action but there had been nothing the Chief Science Officer could do at this time.

It had been nine days since Paris had been erased from the surface of the EARTH, a period of time that for some had been nothing more than a blink of an eye while for others had felt like an eternity.  Many amongst the crew had wanted to see the ship rush directly back to EARTH and address the situation in whatever way they could.  Others were still doing their best to deal with what had taken place and the 28 million lives that had all of a sudden come to an unexpected end.

During their rush return to NEW ALEXANDRIA Maya had researched the Aegis Shield and now considered the defense network to be nothing more than a drastic and desperate measure born of not only fear but ignorance.  To threaten the end of an entire world had been something horrible, and although the Shillian had not been amongst those who called the sapphire planet home, the threat had proven to have an immeasurable effect on her.  As the last known survivor of a world that had been erased from existence, the Chief Science Officer found herself to be in a unique position to understand the plight of many of her fellow shipmates.  She had lived through what they were dreading most, and that alone had made her a kindred spirit to their cause, as if being their shipmate had not been reason enough.

Maya gazed down through the large window of the observation area at the dark form of the USS ANUBIS.  Main power had obviously been taken offline to insure that nothing could go wrong as elements were repaired or replaced. As much as the Shillian woman understood the reasoning, seeing the ship in such a state had only made her emotions that much more volatile. The scientist had never been considered by those who knew her as being overly emotional, maybe highly driven and even beyond talkative, but never had she felt as if her emotions would overflow and take over.

The time spent researching the inner workings of the Aegis Shield had only served to make this entire ordeal that much harder to be made sense of.  Richard Edgerton had taken all of humanity hostage and in doing so had rallied against him countless people, organizations and even worlds. Some had decided to classify the event as a matter of internal conflict thus providing a reason to avoid getting involved.  Others, like the Shillian, had seen the potential destruction of EARTH as an inescapable reason to act and join in on the conflict.

Alas, joining in meant for the time being that she, along with the rest of the crew of the ANUBIS, would have to wait.  Those working on the higher levels of the secret base of operations were doing their best to gather information that could provide them with the required edge to win this conflict. The engineering teams were hard at work fixing all that needed to be fixed. The rest had to come to terms with one and simple fact -- there was nothing they could do other than to wait and hope that their patience and efforts would somehow be rewarded.

"You seem troubled Commander," Shar'El ever so gently said as the Intelligence Liaison Officer came to stand next to the Chief Science Officer.  "Ironic to see the ANUBIS appear to be so at peace given the chaos that is taking place back on EARTH."

"I just feel useless," the Shillian admitted in a rather atypical manner having kept her answer stunningly short, a hint as to the state of the Chief Science Officer that the First Officer of the USS ANUBIS had not missed.

"I overheard one of the Engineering teams talking about doing something to the ventral sensor array," Shar'El said keeping the details vague on purpose.  "They might welcome the input of one of the Scientists who actually uses them."

"I had noticed a slight drop in the sharpness of the scans especially when in the Electromagnetic bandwidth, but I did not think it worth mentioning to Lieutenant Paquette who seemed more than busy at the time, of course that was before we were heading to the GAMMA ERADI Cluster, made to deal with far too many miniature explosives and then ordered back in a hurry," Maya stated, a certain gladness having returned to her voice, as well as the length of her replies.

"Then I would suggest that you get some rest," the First Officer suggested. "The work on the ventral sensor array is schedule to begin at 0600 tomorrow morning."

"Thank you Commander," the Shillian offered, glad that she had been given something other than their current situation to put her mind on.  Without adding another word the Shillian made her way to the quarters she had been assigned while on NEW ALEXANDRIA leaving the First Officer to smile in delight as to what she had accomplished.  Hopefully the engineering team would understand and in time come to forgive her for what she had done.

---
Jessica Solarik

Lieutenant Commander Maya [Access Character BIO for Maya]
Chief Science Officer
USS ANUBIS

&

Captain Selene Fiona Iverson [Access Character BIO for Selene Iverson]
Commanding Officer
USS BASTET

"To see the world in a grain of sand,
and a heaven in a wild flower.
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
and eternity in an hour."
- William Blake (British, 1757-1827)
M02-P046: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 2 - 1950 ("Shattered")
-=-=-
"Shattered"
[Previous post: "Stars and Rocks"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Transporter Room
Stardate: 31200.1950

Ensign Lopez had been asked to join the away team. As the ship's Counselor it had been hoped that she would be able to do a preliminary psychological evaluation of the survivors of the RAMAN as well as any of the J'Den that would also be there.

Given that the crashed ship only had 46 people in its twisted hull, and that 37 of them had been J'Den, the odds had been well in their favor of running into more than a few members of the new alien race.  So far the only thing the crew of the BASTET had been able to gather about the race had been from the generous gifts they had given and the interaction with a single individual. There had been no way to confirm as to whether or not Shutaar had been a usual representation of the race or if she had been an odd and maybe even rejected anomaly.

Adriana could only guess that the possibility of Shutaar not having been a standard J'Den had helped create the feelings of uneasiness that the CNS had picked up from each and every member of the away team.  As explorers the idea of meeting a new race and learning about how the RAMAN had come to be where it was had been exciting.  As part of an Intel Organization dealing in the darker, unsavory side of the galaxy, there had always been the possibility that all of this had been a ruse to draw the BASTET and its crew into a trap.

"Energize."

The order of the First Officer had triggered a strange feeling in the CNS' stomach, and that had been before the transporter had even begun to dematerialize the members of the away team.  Fear and excitement become a single emotion that made Ensign Lopez feel as if she had been ready to leap out of her own skin.

-=-=-
Setting: USS RAMAN, Large Empty Room
Stardate: 31200.1955

Although the large room had been cleared, the physical scars on the walls from the crash had still been there.  The way the room had been left showed that the crew at the time had placed survival at the very top of their priorities list, this for understandable reasons.

With the transport sequence completed, the doors to what had likely been some sort of cargo hold opened to reveal Shutaar, a bright and welcoming smile greeting the away team.

"I'm starting to think that she's the only member of the J'Den," the image of the Counsellor's twin said as she leaned over her sister's shoulder as if her whispering the words had been needed to insure that only Adriana would hear her.

After a quick exchange between Commander Valentine and Shutaar, the away team made their way out of the room and into the corridor.  The remnant of the RAMAN's crew had been expecting them for dinner at which time the survivors would answer any and all questions.

Just like the room, the corridors had been made to be functional over everything else.  Materials and resources had been limited which left Adriana wonder what had happened.

"If the J'Den are so friendly and generous, why have they not helped these people more than they have, if at all?" Adriana said voicing without any surprises what the CNS had been thinking.

After a few turns the away team had reached their destination. It was only at that point that Ensign Lopez noted another J'Den, this one standing at the end of the corridor in an uneasy stance.  Something had been strange, very strange. That the crew of the BASTET had only dealt with one member of the race since their arrival and that other members of the same race appeared to be keeping their distances showed that something huge had been missing from the story.

"Welcome to our shattered lives," an older man who appeared to have gone to hell and back said in a strangely out of place friendly tone.  The torn uniform that he and the remainder of his crew wore had been very similar to what would have been expected from Starfleet Officers, but the smile on their faces seemed to be an odd contrast to their surroundings.

"Either these people have been chemically or psychologically altered or there is something truly weird about this place," the imaginary sister chirped as she followed her twin and the rest of the away team into the broken and barely presentable dining area.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P045: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 2 - 1930 ("Stars and Rocks")
"Stars and Rocks"
Previous post: "The Intel Perspective"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31200.1930

No one fully trusted the J'Den, that Aki could understand but as a scientist she had been unable to fall behind the paranoia. All of the Asian woman's attention had been lost in the star chart that Shutaar had given them, and what a chart it was.

Pinning the location of each and every star in a three-dimensional environment had only been the start. Every asteroid, nebula and other astrological body had been catalogued with remarkable precision.  What took the CSciO's breath away had been that the chart had been programmed with the movements, orbits and drifts of every item.  If that had not been enough, each astrological body had also been accompanied with a detailed analysis of its properties, gravitational pull and anything else that anyone could have thought about.

Studying the J'Den star chart had been like looking at the universe as a whole, every answer at the tip of her fingers.  A quick glance at the BASTET's own position as compared to the star chart made Aki sigh. The rest of her research would have to wait.

"Captain, I have the RAMAN on long-range sensors," Aki said than paused as uncertainty settled in. "At least I think I do."

"Explain," Commander Valentine requested being only a breath away from calling the ship to its highest battle readiness.

"Shutaar said that the RAMAN was part of the small asteroid field ahead of our current location," the CSciO explained.  "Looks like she was a lot more literal than any of us could have expected. Based on these sensor readings, the ship in *on* one of the asteroids."

"A gap in communication?" Ensign Lopez theorized. "Their mastery of our language may not be perfect."

"It is my fault," Aki added.  "Given the level of details and accuracy of the star chart given to us by Shutaar I should have realized that this had been the case the moment I say the ship not being marked as an entity of its own.  I applied what I had expected from what our sensor readings would have been at such an extended distance."

"How is the ship?" Captain Iverson asked.

"Our sensors show the vessel as having suffered critical structure damage from what appears to be a massive collision with the asteroid," the CSciO reported.  "Whatever area of the ship survived the crash appears to have been sealed and turned into some sort of base."

"It does explain why Shutaar said that the RAMAN had been incapable of meeting us on the other side of the micro-singularity," Commander Valentine reluctantly granted.  "Would also explain why the RAMAN stayed in this dimension instead of returning to its own or even requesting to be sent to another like ours."

"I suspect that the story will be even more complicated," Captain Iverson said standing from the central chair.  "Lieutenant Mitshiba, I want a complete scan of the wreckage including how many life forms are present and what race they belong to.  Commander Valentine will need as much information as possible for the away mission."

"Yes Sir," Aki nodded, returning to her work, this time dedicated to the wreckage of the RAMAN and the asteroid that it had crashed into.

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Transporter Room
Stardate: 31200.1950

"Are we ready?" Commander Valentine asked of the members of the away team as they stepped onto the transporter platform.

"The RAMAN is really in bad condition. All of Main Engineering was destroyed during the crash. From what I was able to get from our sensors, the bridge, sickbay and several quarters survived while the other areas were stripped to likely provide materials to make the rest livable," the CSciO reported.

"How many people will we be dealing with?" the First Officer asked sounding somewhat suspicious.

"Sensors picked up a total of 46 life forms, only 9 of them were non-J'Den."

The Commander took a moment to consider what she had been told. Her orders had been simple but the entire situation seemed unreal.  Still there had only been one way to get to the bottom of why the RAMAN had sent he message they had and why the BASTET had been brought here. "Energize."

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M02-P044: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 2 - 1900 ("The Intel Perspective")
=-=
"The Intel Perspective"
[previous post was "Sociological Review" by the thorough Marissa]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Janeel's Quarters
Stardate: 31200.1900

Lieutenant Commander Janeel; at least that had been who was looking back at her through the reflective surface of the mirror. Everyone on board the USS BASTET knew her by the face that had been associated with that name from the moment she had come onboard.  As far as the crew had been concerned, with the exception of the Captain and First Officer, there had not been any reason for them to question that as an unchangeable fact.

Why would they?

Janeel sauntered back into the living area of her quarters, her womanly form exposed to the brisk cool air of her quarters which had been purposefully kept several degrees below the set normal for the ship. Her abilities had not been dependant or even affected by the lower ambient temperature but the Daledian Allasomorph had always preferred it that way when relaxing.

With their rendez-vous with the RAMAN rapidly approaching, the ILO / Mission Specialist had thought it best to return to hr quarters to gather her thoughts.  Dealing with the emotions, ideas and even fears of everyone around her had not been the Daledian's strongest attribute.  Captain Iverson would certain come to need a cool head when asking for the ILO's professional perspective on the J'Den, and this had been the best way for Janeel to provide it.

Item by item the woman looked at the trinkets which decorated her walls, each one resting on a small dedicated shelf.  To everyone else these objects had been nothing more than someone's odd collection of meaningless junk, but to Janeel each represented a life and shape that she had called hers at some point in the past.

Like the ambient temperature, the trinkets had no official role to play in her shapeshifting abilities but the woman had found it useful to focus on a specific item when taken on another form.  During her time on board the USS SCARAB, Janeel had learned and perfected several alternate identities, the item corresponding to them were now displayed with pride on her wall.

The first item she had collected had been a Bajoran earring, one that had belonged to Lieutenant Kirnon.  The shuttlecraft maintenance engineer had been assigned to the SCARAB, where she met him, before he was transferred to NEW ALEXANDRIA. The Bajoran officer had been the first of that ship's crew she had used her ability to mimic, and he had become the reason why Janeel had from that moment on decided to focus her skill on females only. The failure at that time had been a difficult one to accept and the incident still held a great deal of pull on her.

On the shelf to the right, a delicately shaped glass stood as a reminder of the form and identity she had delighted the most in taking.  The medical officer of the SCARAB had proven to be an exquisite challenge in all aspects, the woman possessing a unique mannerism and way of moving about.  The day she had left never to return had also been the last time Janeel would ever take on the identity of the woman she had grown to admire in many different ways.

Each and every item present on the shelves represented not only a person whose identity and likeness she had made her own, they also stood as a reminder of the story that accompanied that person.  In most cases the item made Janeel smile, but there had been a few of these odd trinkets which held memories that never failed to make the ILO shed at least one tear.

The ILO closed her eyes and took in a long deep breath. Her mind needed to be clear and focussed for what she would was coming.  After a few seconds Janeel reopened her eyes and allowed her gaze to fall onto a small coin-like item that had been placed on the dining room table. Although appearing like all of the other items and trinkets, the coin had not earned the priviledge of its own shelf, at least not yet. Maybe it would join the others in time, but for now the small metallic coin which had been given by Shutaar would stay where it had been placed.  Only time would see if it would join the others on the wall of memories.

=/\= Iverson to Janeel. =/\=

"Yes Captain," the ILO / Mission Specialist replied before making her way back to her room in order to get dress. "I will be on my way to the bridge shortly. As for the task you had given me, I have found nothing to put in question the validity of the  claims made by the J'Den.  The analysis of the voice and micro-expressions of Shutaar do not seem to point to her being deceitful in any way, but it should be kept in mind that we are dealing with a completely new alien race."

=/\= What about my second request? =/\=

"I have studied Shutaar enough to be able to do as you have requested should the need arise," the ILO said as looked across her quarters at the coin-like item still resting on the table.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P043: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 2 - 1845 ("Sociological Review")
-=-=-
"Sociological Review"
[Previous post: "Maybe Too Friendly"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Counselor's Office
Stardate: 31200.1845

The J'Den had provided the crew of the BASTET with several files. Anything dealing with science and star charts had been handed over to Misaki, anything dealing with the race's social evolution had been passed on to Adriana.  The Captain's request had been a simple one; to learn as much as possible.  It had taken the greater majority of the last 14 hours to even come close to getting there.

"Most races would be reluctant to giving that much data about themselves to anyone," Amada said looking down at the numerous PADDs sitting on the table in front of her sister.

"I only took 3 hours to rest and I barely managed to get through the main points of the J'Den and their social evolution," the CNS said as she cracked her neck.  "I can only guess as to the actual age of the race since the data provided actually fails to provide any time references."

"Maybe they are hiding something in plain sight."

"I'm not sure," Adriana said in reply to comment made by the mental projection of her sister.  "Some of the details contained in what they sent us is very detailed and I would even go as far as to say personal, at least for a race.  As you said, not a lot of races would be willing to share the darker side of their history with complete strangers."

"But are we truly strangers?" Amanda said as she pointed to one specific PADD on he table.  "According to their own admission, they have been observing our dimension since well before the birth of the Federation.  It goes without saying that they likely know more about us then we might know about ourselves."

"Ours was one out of hundreds that were being observed and studied," the CNS said.  "I doubt that they spent a great deal of time or effort on the small events of a single world hidden inside one galaxy lost in an entire dimension."

"Alright then," the image of the sister said starting the debate, "explain to me why they feel the need to share their entire social history without asking for anything in return if they don't have a solid grasp of ours?  Being friendly is one thing, being trusting is another, being this unilaterally open makes absolutely no sense."

"We cannot judge another culture based on our own value and history," Ensign Lopez argued back.  "Their history is nothing like ours, filled with trans-dimensional invaders, slavery and a social foundation that eventually led to them not only regaining control of their worlds but setting up a system that has insured their protection for centuries."

"I find it interesting that it is the women of this race who took control."

"Nothing overly surprising there," Adriana said. "They used whatever resource and abilities at their disposal to gain a foothold against the invaders, gradually learning skills that would led them to overthrow the oppressing invaders.  At that time the male population simply acknowledged what the women had done for everyone and were more than happy to have them be in charge."

"Maybe so, but the males have become nothing more than slaves once again, this time under the control of their own race."

"Why are you arguing this?" the CNS sighed.  "These people have not had any sort of internal conflict in over a millennia. Their social system may not reflect ours and our values, but you cannot argue the fact that it has and continues to work."

"I'm not arguing," the image of the twin sister said laughingly. "You are the one doing so with yourself. Remember, I'm not really here."

"I need more than three hours sleep," Adriana said as she fell back into the couch on which she had been sitting on the edge of while reading the files that the J'Den had provided them with.

=/\= Iverson to Lopez. =/\=

"Yes Captain?"

=/\= Have you had the chance to complete your review of the J'Den? =/\=

"Not completely Captain," the CNS said as she sat back on the edge of the couch and looked at the PADDS on the table in front of her.  "There is still a great deal of data for me to review but with what I have been able to see the J'Den are as they appear; a friendly race who have been keeping an eye on numerous other dimensions.  Their matriarchal society values honesty and strength, they also have a protective attitude towards anything that they feel responsible for, an attitude that I would qualify as being beyond that of motherly.  Deception does not appear to be their way, but that still does not cover the why they have been so generous towards us."

=/\= Keep on with your research Ensign, we will be reaching the RAMAN in half an hour or so. Any additional information you will be able to provide will be appreciated. =/\=

"Of course Captain, Lopez out."

"You have to love this situation," Amanda said sarcastically.  "Here we are getting assistance from a race who appears to only want to help and we are doing everything in our power to see them as being somehow evil for wanting to do so."

"Unfortunately history is filled with accounts of beings with evil intents presenting themselves as friends, and that's not just in our dimension but theirs as well," the CNS said.  "Given all that they have learned from other races, it is not impossible that they have picked up that little trick as well."

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P042: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 2 - 1830 ("Maybe Too Friendly")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Maybe Too Friendly"
[previous post (Tight Fit)]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31200.1830

It had almost been 14 hours since they had been pulled into this dimension and met Shutaar from the J'Den.  Just from the way things had happened it had been evident that the race possessed technology greatly superior to that of the Federation. Luckily for the BASTET and its crew the race had proven itself to be friendly, maybe even a little *too* friendly.

"These star charts are amazing," Misaki swooned, the Chief Science Officer having spent every available minute going over the charts that Shutaar had generously provided.  Although Lt JG Mitshiba had been ordered to get some rest following their arrival, the woman had returned to her station as soon as she had been permitted to study the gifts from the J'Den.

"It was an unexpected gift," the Executive Officer said still not ready to fully trust the race.  Although Shutaar had explained how and why they had been expecting the BASTET, the entire affair had just seemed to be too perfect.  "Sometimes, what you get free costs entirely too much."

"I would agree," the Captain added as she stepped out of her Ready Room.  "I just finished a lengthy discussion with Shutaar and she has been more than helpful on every aspect, still I don't think I am ready to quote Ferengi Rules of Acquisition."

Sarena just grinned, not surprised that their CO had picked up on the fact that she had quoted the 151th Ferengi rule.  "What did she have to say, and offer?"

"A great deal," Captain Iverson said as she went to join the CSciO at her station, the two women being joined by the Executive Officer seconds later.

"The history of the Federation and the J'Den in a nutshell is that they have been keeping an eye on us for quite some time," the Captain explained.  "There is nothing remotely similar to the UFP in this dimension, but in all of the other dimensions where they have witnessed the presence of the organization, the J'Den were impressed.  Apparently they were also saddened by the fact that the Federation actually met an untimely end in several of these other dimensions. The RAMAN which is present in this dimension came, according to Shutaar, from one of the doomed reality."

"How many of these dimensions are they keeping track of?" Janeel asked having been listening in on the conversation.

"Shutaar would not actually give me a number," the Captain replied, "but from the way she spoke I would have to guess that the number is in the high hundreds if not thousands.

"That would explain the amazing level of details in their star chart," Misaki mused.  "They would need to have impressive scanning technology to be able to do all this.

"It would be prudent to consider that they may also know far more about us and our dimension than they have shared," the ILO said, her role and duties making it her task to consider the other side of the issue.  "I would like to know why they decided on our dimension over any other to send the message from the RAMAN."

"I inquired about that exact matter," Captain Iverson nodded.  "The explanation was two fold; first, the dimension of origin of the RAMAN is in no shape to render any sort of assistance and according to Shutaar they were not ready to let their presence be known there; second, we were the *closest* and in best situation to help. She also mentioned something about there being something of interest for us on board that ship."

"Way too mysterious for me," Valentine sighed.  

"We should not be so harsh on the J'Den," Misaki argued. "How many times have we encountered a race that is so willing to help and be friends?"

"That's my point Lieutenant," the Executive Officer said. "Friendship is seldom cheap."

"Commander? Another Ferengi Rule of Acquisition?" Selene groaned.  "Should I be worried?"

"Sorry," Sarena chuckled ever so briefly.

"Lt. Mitshiba, continue studying those star charts," the Captain ordered.  "According to Shutaar we will be reaching the RAMAN in less than an hour.

"Good, maybe we can get another point of view of the J'Den from the crew," the Executive Officer said with distinct anticipation.

"From what I was told I suspect that it won't be that easy."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M02-P041: USS BASTET: Iverson: Day 2 - 0445 ("Tight Fit")
---
"Tight Fit"
(Previous Post: "Odds, Probabilities and Possibilities")
---

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31200.0445

"Small ships?" Selene gasped. First they had been forced to deal with miniature explosives that were being replicated just as fast as they were exploding against the hull of the BASTET and ANUBIS, and now they would have to deal with miniature ships.  "How many?"

Given that the unknown objects had actually been large enough to be seen, the question had been that much more pertinent given that a swarm of them appeared to be rushing through the dimensional micro-singularity.

"This can't be right," Lieutenant Mitshiba noted as she shook her head in disbelief. "Sensors are picking up hundreds of these things, increasing at a rate of 50 a second."

"This is rapidly becoming more than a small matter to deal with," the First Officer huffed, not at all impressed by the recent turn of events.

"Looks like the swarm is heading directly for us and plans to engulf the ship," Janeel exclaimed not at all certain as to what they would be able to do against such a numerous and individually minute fleet.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Ensign Lopez's Quarters
Stardate: 31200.0450

With her last Counselling session over, the Ship's Counsellor had returned to her quarters to get some rest.  Dealing with other's emotions, fears and concerns, as well as she might have been trained in that domain, still proved to be physically and mentally taxing.

As Adriana sat on the couch her gaze drifted onto the nearest window where she had expected to see the swirling colours of the GAMMA ERADI Cluster, instead the Ensign saw something that made her tap her comm badge in puzzlement.

"Ensign Lopez to the Bridge, what is going on?"

=/\= Believe it or not, we are being surrounded by hundreds, make that thousands now, of miniature ships, =/\= Commander Valentine replied.  =/\= RED ALERT! =/\= the First Officer added immediately after. Whatever those small ships had been, they had officially been classified as a potential threat to the BASTET.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31200.0455

"There is a strange energy field being created by these things," Misaki reported with some urgency.  "The more of these things get around us the stronger that field becomes."

Before the Captain could say anything, the lights flickered and everyone experienced a strange feeling of dizziness causing them to either sit or reach for the nearest structure in search of stability.

"Report!" Commander Valentine demanded, wondering in silence after the fact as to why her voice had sounded slightly higher pitched than usual.

"Every system is being affected by this energy field," the Chief Science Officer reported, her voice also having come across as on a higher pitch than normal.  "Trying to compensate."

"Is is just me or is the micro-singularity getting larger?" Captain Iverson queried as she noted the image on the screen having become much larger than it had been only a few seconds before.

"This... This... This is impossible," Misaki continued, her voice for some reason having returned to normal.  "The ships surrounding us are creating some sort of molecular compression field."
"Meaning?" Valentine demanded with urgency and irritation.

"The singularity is not getting bigger," Lieutenant Mitshiba explained in complete astonishment, "we are being made to be smaller.  Every single one of our atoms is being compressed at an amazing rate.  We are being shrunk and there is nothing we can do about it."

Everyone watched in silence as the small ships that had emerged from the dimensional singularity began to appear to be much larger, allowing for previously impossible to see details to be perfectly clear.

"Looks like we are going in, that we like it or not," Commander Valentine pointed out as the BASTET began to move closer to the singularity which now appeared to being large enough for the ship to easily pass through.

"Do we have weapons or propulsion?" Selene demanded in a last ditch effort to get out of the figuratively small mess they had been forced into.

"Negative Captain," Misaki replied.  "There is nothing we can do."  As she spoke those words the main view screen along with the entire bridge fell into complete darkness.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31200.0510

One by one the members of the Senior Staff awoke, finding themselves on the floor near where they had been standing or sitting last they could remember.

"All stations report," the Captain ordered feeling as if her brain had been several sizes too big for her skull.

"Systems are coming back online," Mitshiba reported.  "Internal sensors are not showing any breaches or issues with the ship."

"What about that singularity and those other ships?" the First Officer demanded, the main view screen still having been out of commission.

"External sensors are coming back online now," the Chief Science Officer said.  "Picking up a micro-singularity just over 500 meters dead astern and there is no sign of those small ships, but there is one larger one directly ahead."

"Can we put it on the main view screen?" the Captain asked wanting to at least see what they were dealing with.

The image that appeared on the large forward screen was that of an alien ship never before seen.
"Weapon status?" Valentine inquired wanting to know if they were ready to prepare for a fight or not.

"Sensors are not picking up any signs of active weapon systems from the other ship," Misaki reported, "but they are trying to hail us."

"Alright, put them on screen," Selene said as she stood still trying to ward off the massive headache she had somehow inherited from their little trip through the dimensional singularity.

[/\] My name is Shutaar of the J'Den and we have been expecting you, [/\]  a strange looking red hair alien woman with white circular horns protruding from the side of her head said as her image appeared on the main view screen. [/\] Sorry for the rather unorthodox method used to bring you here but it was necessary.  As for the headaches you are very likely experiencing at the moment rest assured that it will soon pass. [/\]

"YOu have been expecting us?" Captain Iverson inquired, still trying to process all that had just happened to herself and the rest of the BASTET.

[/\] Yes, [/\] Shutaar confirmed. [/\] now if you would follow us, we will take you to the RAMAN. I assure you that no harm will come to your ship or its crew. [/\]

"This has to be one of the easiest first contacts with an trans-dimensional race on record," Misaki offered with a smile.

"I doubt that this falls under first contact," Commander Valentine pointed out.  "The fact that they know of the RAMAN and its location is more than enough proof of that."

"I do have some questions for you to answers," Selene said glad to see that her headache had indeed begun to vanish as Shutaar had stated.

[/\] Of course, [/\] the J'Den woman replied sounding as friendly and accommodating as could be. [/\] As I understand it time is of the essence, so just follow us. I will be happy to answer all of your questions on the way to the RAMAN. [/\]

"Two options," the ILO offered in a whispered voice. "We defy them, stay here and try to figure out where we are and what to do next or we follow and see if they are actually taking us to where we need to go."

"They do seem to know a great deal about us," the Captain stated. "Helm follow that ship.  Commander Valentine, in the meantime please check on DJ and make sure that she's ready for action," Selene added making an indirect reference to the Dimensional Jump Drive.

---
Jessica Solarik

Captain Selene Fiona Iverson [Access Character BIO for Selene Iverson]
Commanding Officer
USS BASTET

&

Lieutenant Commander Maya [Access Character BIO for Maya]
Chief Science Officer
USS ANUBIS

"To see the world in a grain of sand,
and a heaven in a wild flower.
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
and eternity in an hour."
- William Blake (British, 1757-1827)
M05-P033: USS ANUBIS: Morningstar: Day 2 - 0530
("Odds, Probabilities and Possibilities")
##########
"Odds, Probabilities and Possibilities"
Previous post "Understanding a Madman"
##########

"Occurrences in this domain are beyond the reach of exact prediction because of the variety of factors in operation, not because of any lack of order in nature."
- Albert Einstein

=====
Setting: NEW ALEXANDRA, Section A, Level 6, Administrative Offices
Stardate: 31200.0530

Admiral Charles M. Koniki… Commanding Officer of the Intel base NEW ALEXANDRIA, an Intel base of operation the existence of which had been known by only a select few… stood between 2 of the 3 massive statues located behind his desk. Each statue represented one of the three SCARAB-Class vessels that operated from the complex… the USS HORUS… the USS SEKHMET… and the USS ANUBIS. Their mission… to protect the Federation and all of its citizens by dealing with the problems that no one else would or knew about.

As far as Charles had been concerned, they had failed.

Koniki's mind struggled to make sense of all that he had been made aware of over the last nine days - since the obliteration of Paris; reports that now sat on scattered PADDs all over the imposing desk behind him. The Admiral's gaze scanned the large docking area where only one of the three primary vessels were currently docked.  Never before had he felt such longing to see the two missing ships back *home*.

A chime echoed through the peaceful office which caused the Admiral to abandon his contemplation of the empty docking bays. As if fearing what he had to do next, the base's CO slowly made his way back to his desk. With the press of a single button one of the impressive Egyptian canvas on the opposing wall slid out of sight to reveal an equally impressive view screen.

"Report," Koniki calmly commanded, his voice echoed an uneasiness that was alien to the veteran officer who had seen more in the last decade than most Starfleet officers would see in their entire career.

=/\= We have reviewed and analysed the information that was provided… we are ready to answer your questions. =/\= A female voice said, the screen having opened onto a completely black room where only the hints of shadows could be barely discerned.

"How could we have missed this?" The Admiral inquired of the darkness, the individuals hidden therein having possessed unique abilities that more than once had given the Intel team an insight into a situation that no one else could have provided.

=/\ = Based on the information and reports that we were provided on Richard Edgerton and the Neo-Essentialists, there had only been a 6.9% chance that events would unfold as they had. =/\= A second female voice replied from the darkness, the intonation and manner of speech being very close to those of the first… pointing to their obvious status as siblings.

"Could there have been some sort of external influence in his decisions?" The Admiral huffed as he ran his hand over his lower jaw in irritation, unable fully to comprehend how anyone could order the death of 28 million people in cold blood.

=/\= There is only a 14.1% chance that a source outside of Starfleet influenced the man in making the decisions he did, =/\= A third voice from the darkness added, moving the number of unseen siblings to three.

=/\= Base on all psychological evaluations and profiles, there is a 89.5% chance that the decisions which led to the destruction of Paris and the 28 million casualties were the result of a deeply rooted belief in the Neo-Essentialist cause, =/\= A fourth voice commented in a rather unemotional manner.

"Will the ships be back on time to effect all needed repairs and work so that they can join in with the battle to regain EARTH?," the Admiral sighed to himself thinking it best to shift the focus of his questions.

=/\= Based on the last communications of each unit currently out, there is a 96.8% chance that all vessels will indeed be back on time for repairs and upgrades to be performed before the predicted conflict takes place, =/\= Yet another voice added, bringing the total number of similar sounding people hiding in the complete darkness of the room to five.

=/\= This is based on the extrapolation that there is a 77.8% chance that the predicted battle for EARTH will be delayed by several weeks due to one or more factors outside of anyone's control, =/\= the Second sibling commented.

=/\= It should also be noted that due to the work pattern of Lieutenant Sonja Paquette there is a 95.8% chance that the ANUBIS will actually make it back to NEW ALEXANDRIA several days ahead of it's Captain's prediction, =/\= The first of the five women heard previously added.

"Good, that will give us plenty of time to be ready,"Koniki grinned ever so softly, the man never having been one to raise his hopes about anything.

=/\= It should be noted that there is only a 12.1% chance that an assault against EARTH will be successful, resulting in only minimum additional casualties, =/\= The voice of the third profiler was heard saying.

=/\= Admiral, taking into account all of the data we have been given so far there is an 82.6% chance that any assault against EARTH and the Aegis Shield will result in all annihilation of all life on the planet. The addition of the NEW ALEXANDRIA ships to the battle only decreases this percentage by 2.8%, =/\= The sixth and final female voice said before the screen was shot off as Koniki forcefully hit the control panel located on his desk returning the Admiral to his self imposed quiet solitude.

Several moments passed in absolute silence as the Admiral considered what he had heard and the only possible course of action. The sisters had always been a great help in providing a clear set of possibilities, but in this particular instance the odds they had provided had been less than promising.

"Allyson… please have Lt. Cmdr. Rue report to my office."

=/\= Of course Admiral, I will have her report to you immediately, =/\= the always cheerful head receptionist replied as if not having a single care in the universe.

=====
Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31200.0545

"We are holding at warp 5.75," the Helmsman reported to the Captain the rest of the Senior officers who were present on the bridge.

"Looks like Sonja's repairs have managed to hold," the Chief of Security noted with delight. The higher the maintainable speed was the faster they would arrive at back at their Base of Operation to prepare for what was to come.

"At this speed though we are still several days away," Stark pointed out. As great as the news had been in regards to the increased speed, the Human Ensign had been itching to get back and do something, anything to help retake EARTH from the Neo-Essentialists and the madman leading them.

"If I may Captain," the Chief Science Officer began, "it might be a good idea for you to get some rest. The ANUBIS is well on its way back to NEW ALEXANDRIA and the crew as well as its Captain need to be well rested."

The Native American had been ready to argue but the pain coursing through his muscles had ended the would be discussion well before it had even started.  "Fine, I will go to my quarters for a few hours, but I want half the crew to do the same.  Either they get some rest now or after, but I want everyone to rest."

"Of course Captain," but may I suggest that your "few hours" be more along what Doctor Doyanne would recommend, say at least four or five?"

Not having ben in the mood for a battle with his Chief Medical Officer, the Captain conceded with a long sigh.  "I'll be back in four hours than.," Erik offered as she rose from his chair and made his way to the turbolift knowing all too well that both the conversation and his decision had been closely monitored by the ANUBIS' Executive Officer from the IGC.

==========
Who & where as of 0545 -

CO, Morningstar - Heading to his quarters
ExO/ILO, Shar'El - IGC
OPS, Stark - Bridge
Sec/Tac, Ya'Han - Bridge
CSciO, Maya - Bridge
CEO, Paquette - Main Engineering
CMO, Doyanne - Sickbay
CNS, Dalziel - Counselor's Office

--==(/\)==--

Francois Charette

Commanding Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC 18501

AND

Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA
M05-P032: USS ANUBIS: Shar'El: Day 2 - 0345 ("Understanding A Madman")
=-=
"Understanding A Madman"
[previous post was "Cinderella And The Core Chat" by the amazingly witty Lorraine]
=-=

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Deck A-4, Intel Gathering Center
Stardate: 31200.0345

Might have been nice if Admiral Koniki had informed someone of the newly declassified files, but the ExO / ILO understood that the man had probably been dealing with a lot more at this point in the game.  It had been most fortunate that Ya'Han had stumbled on these files leading Shar'El to return to the IGC to do some reading of her own.

"Commander," one of the IGC techs began, a noticeable glee present in his voice. "The ANUBIS had just increased speed to Warp 5.5."

"The redhead magician does it again," Shar'El quietly smiled.  The situation had called for the ExO / ILO to be demanding, and the CEO had risen to the task as the First Officer knew she would. With one item taken off her list, the Commander returned her attention to her own priority. "Computer, access all recently declassified files and display on primary monitors 3 through 6 all information pertaining to Richard Edgerton.  Sort data according to the following parameters; on screen 3 show all personal and medical information; on screen 4 display his academic and Starfleet history; on screen 5 I want a chronological list of all locations he has visited, either professionally or as a tourist; and on screen 6 I need to see all psychological data on that man.  Start displaying data as it becomes available."

=/\= Working. =/\= the computer replied. the ExO / ILO had to wait only a few seconds before information began to appear on the screens, lines after lines appeared to be added on the various screens almost at random.

The first information to appear had been the man's name and age on monitor 3.  Richard Edgerton born in Britain on EARTH in 2371, making him 60 a years old British.  ::Somewhat young for senility to set in, although the geographical location does support that possibility,:: Shar'El thought to herself. Other than the occasional minor illness the man had been as physically fit as could be leaving the screen nearly half empty.

On monitor 4 the academic and Starfleet service record of Richard Edgerton had been neatly displayed, showing the an impressive array of successes and achievements which began with the man graduating from Starfleet Academy in 2399 with the rank of Lieutenant Junior grade instead of Ensign.  There had been no doubts about it, the man had been, and likely still was, a smart overachiever.  From there the skilled Tactical Officer had risen through the ranks to earn his first command thirteen years later, landing the center chair of the USS VALHALLA in 2412.  In 2423 Richard Edgerton was promoted to Admiral with an impeccable service record behind him.

"Great," Shar'El sighed. "The man is not just a smart overachiever, he's a skilled and brilliant overachieving military tactician, which makes him that much more dangerous."

With that in mind the ExO / ILO shifted her attention to the next monitor which displayed where the man enjoyed spending his time.  As much as someone could learn from an academic and service record, the Intel Operative of the ANUBIS had long ago learned that a lot could be learned from where a person liked to spent their time.  Richard Edgerton had not been any different, his travel pattern showed repeated visits to RISA, namely in the area where the Neo-Essentialist had mounted their first political demonstration. Being a world with such easy access to countless races and people of various ideology the planet had been a perfect meeting and even recruitment location for the Neo-Essentialists.   BAJOR, STRALEB and RUTIA IV had also appeared repeatedly on the list hinting that the man had some sort of interest in locations dealing with political instability.

On monitor 6, the psychological profile of the man had been displayed. Several notes were on the file, but Shar'El was surprised and even a little annoyed that none of the Psychological markers she had expected to see had been present.  During his time at Starfleet Academy Richard Edgerton had ranked in the top 5% on the intellectual scale for not only his class but for the entire Academy.  As a Starfleet Officer the man had passed each and every psychological evaluation with flying colors, this even after the time when the ExO / ILO had established the most likely time period when he had become involved with the Neo-Essentialists.

"There is no *madness*," the ExO / ILO sighed as she leaned back into her chair having considered her efforts as having failed.  "The man is nothing more than a zealot committed to an extremist political view and unfortunately that makes him even more dangerous to us all.  It is hard for others to rally behind madness, but to fall in behind an idea and a man capable of presenting that vision with unwavering conviction is how history itself is made to drastically change.

Knowing that the battle against Richard Edgerton and the Neo-Essentialists could not be won by finding some sort of basic psychological weakness to exploit, the ExO / ILO changed her focus to a more direct approach. Regaining control of EARTH and saving the Federation would not be easy and Shar'El knew that many would be made to pay on either side, well above and beyond the 28 million innocent who had already been made to be an unwilling sad part of this conflict.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M05-P031: USS ANUBIS: Paquette: Day 2 - 0130 ("Cinderella And The Core Chat")
=====
"Cinderella And The Core Chat"
Previous post - Dawn's "Small Steps"
=====

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Auxiliary System controls
Stardate: 31200.0130

Sonja had regrouped with a few of her engineering teams to coordinate their latest set of repairs. Getting the ANUBIS back on its feet had been more than a priority, but thanks to their ILO’s little beaming trick things had been moving along a lot faster.

=/\= Bridge to Lieutenant Paquette, =/\= the voice of the ship’s ExO echoed through the room.  The fact that Shar’El had called the redhead by her rank and last name had been the first hint that something was very wrong.

“What did I do? Or is it that I missed something?” Sonja replied.  “If I missed something I plead exhaustion and a drastic lack of chocolate.”

-=/\= We are going to need maximum warp speed – ASAP, =/\= the ExO said in an extremely business-like manner. The second hint that something drastic had happened.

“I need to change my name to Cinderella,” the Chief Engineer muttered to herself. “Fix my console Cinderelli, fix the beds Cinderelli, people are floating Cinderelli. Sheesh!”

=/\= I did not hear you, =/\= Shar’El added.  =/\= Are the comms working properly? =/\=

“Comms are working fine. I just have a few emergencies to take care of,” Sonja replied trying to match the Senior Officer’s tone. “Sickbay called with issues with their biobeds and are unable to properly treat their patients. I also have the artificial gravity plating on deck 11 to take care of as we seem to have some floaters,” the CEO added with a smile.

=/\= NO, =/\= Share’El snapped. =/\= We need maximum warp NOW. =/\=

“Alright,” Sonja said having for obvious reasons been taken aback by the manner in which she had been ordered about.  “I will have all available teams on it. ANI can help coordinate the efforts.  Can I ask what’s going on?”

=/\= Koniki recalled the fleet back to NEW ALEXANDRIA. =/\=

“Wowza,” the redhead gasped. “I’ll have a chat with the warp core and beat it into submission if I have to.”

===
Setting: USS ANUBIS, Main Engineering
Stardate: 31200.0230

Like things weren’t hectic enough for the somewhat frazzled CEO, the news that Koniki had recalled the fleet meant only one things – whatever happened had not been good, not one bit.  The ANIBUS had begun the journey back but Sonja had only been able to give the Captain warp 3 for the moment.  She had to admit that her little chat with the warp core had not been going overly well.

“Would be a lot easier if we could take the core offline for an hour or so,” one of the engineers suggested.

“Not an option,” Soinja countered. “Koniki recalled the fleet and I doubt he did so with a ‘no rush, take your time’ in mind.”

The banter quickly came to an end when an impossible to miss quiver went through the room causing some sparks to fly.

“Oh what fresh hell is this?” Sonja said as she looked up at the nearest console to identify the cause of the rumble.  “This may be why the core is being bitchy.”

“Systems are showing that the port-aft structural integrity generator is losing power,” another engineer reported.

“We need to take care of that NOW,” the CEO pointed out as she reached for the nearest engineering repair kit.  “Best case scenario is that we sooner or later will have to drop below warp 3. Worst case scenario we lose that part of the ship THEN we completely drop out of warp.  You guys are with me!”

===
Setting: USS ANUBIS, Turbolift on route to the Bridge
Stardate: 31200.0330

With the Port-Aft generator fixed Sonja had been able to quickly return to Main Engineering and continue her chat with the Warp Core.  Apparently the ANUBIS had been somewhat more receptive to the CEO’s coxing the second time around.

Although the redhead could have simply contacted the bridge, Sonja had opted to deliver the news in person. One, this would give her a few seconds or respite and two, it might give her the chance to learn more about why the fleet had been recalled

As the doors of the turbolift opened, Sonja noted a rather somber atmosphere on the command deck. What stuck out even more to the CEO was the fact that the hair of their Chief of Security and Tactical Officer had been going through some quick colour changes.

::When rainbow girl can’t control her hair colour you know things are bad,:: Sonja thought as she slowly walked up to stand next to the woman who had been so busy reading that she had failed to even note the Engineer’s presence.

(Paraphrased from Hanali’s last post)

“Are you okay?” Sonja asked of the NYLAAN, as she seemed very distracted.

“Just reading about the Aegis Shield,” Ya’Han admitted with saddened concern. “These Neo-Essentialists are mad, completely mad.  We have to find a way to stop them before it is too late.”

“We are working on that,” Sonja said with a smile picking up on the only thing she understood.  The Aegis Shield, for the time being, meant nothing to the redheaded Engineer. “Just came by to let our Captain know that we have warp 5.5 available,” she nodded towards their Captain who acknowledged with a single word.

Looking back at Ya’Han, Sonja inquired. “What is this Aegis Shield and who are the Neo-Essentialists?”  With curiosity engraved on her features the CEO waited for a reply.  The delay in anyone offering any sort of reply was the last hint the redhead needed to understand that something tremendous had taken place.

“You haven’t heard?” Ya’Han said in complete disbelief.

“Heard what?” Sonja said sounding a little annoyed.  “Since Koniki ordered us back I have had my head in the proverbial warp core’s butt. I can assure you that you don’t hear much down there.”

“Well you’ve missed on quite a bit,” Ya’Han offered before going on to explain the situation.

=====
Lorraine Paquette 

Lieutenant JG Sonja Paquette [Access Character BIO for Sonja Paquette]
Chief Engineering Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC 18501
M02-P040: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 2 - 0430 ("Small Steps")
"Small Steps"
Previous post: "Declassified Information"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31200.0400

Sensors had been useless, and that had not been the only reason why Aki had been upset. Something in the GAMMA ERADI Cluster also interfered with their primary visual display making it next to impossible for the BASTET to navigate.

"Any luck?" the Captain asked of the Asian woman who had been trying everything conceivable to get the sensors to register more than a few dozen meters around them.

"The density of the stellar particles has not stopped increasing," the CSciO said.  "I don't that I will be ale to break through and if this density increased continues at this rate we will be forcing our way through actual solid matter.

"I thought Admiral Koniki had said that there was some sort of trans-dimensional weakness in this area of space," the First Officer said in frustration.

"The increased density could, in theory, be the result of solar material being transferred from another dimension to ours. Of course this means that the weakest point between the dimensions will be where the density is at its greatest."

"Continue ahead at quarter impulse." The Captain's order had not sounded enthusiastic in the least but their mission objective had not permitted for any other course of action.

"Captain," Aki gulped. "Just for the record, with our sensors working as they are, we could be in here for months searching for the location of that dimensional weakness.

"Or we could stumble onto it by sheer luck in a few seconds," the First Officer said as she pointed to the main viewscreen which now showed a perfectly clear area of space.

"The area roughly measures 215 kilometers in radius," Aki quickly reported glad to see that her instruments were once again working.  "Sensors can only go as far as the edge of this clearing though but I can get a definite reading on the center of the area.  There appears to be a dimensional micro-singularity.  Can't get a precise reading on it but I would guess that it measures no more than a few centimeters in size."

"We are going to need a much smaller ship if we are to make our way through that," Janeel noted.

"Well the BASTET was sent here because we could return from whatever dimension we would end up in, the question was which dimension did we need to travel to to find the RAMAN," Iverson explained.  "Now that our sensors are functional and that we have a window into that other dimension, we will just have to jump there on our own instead of just flying through the opening."

"I am so glad that you did not expect us to fit in that," Valentine said kiddingly.  "Is the opening large enough for us to get an accurate enough sensor reading to identify the dimensional coordinates?" the ExO continued after having turned to the ship's CSciO.

"I will have to narrow the bandwidth and try to get through the opening, but I should be able to get it done in about an hour," Aki replied, her attention having been completely focussed on her instruments.

"We might not have an hour," the Captain commented as she stood from her chair and drew everyone's attention onto the main viewscreen.

"What are those?" the First Officer asked as she saw small little objects coming out of the micro-singularity.  "Not more of those blasted explosives I hope."

"No, actually these are much larger and visible to our sensors," Aki said as she analysed the small items that had entered their dimension.  "I am reading extremely faint power readings.  If I didn't know better I would say that those things are small ships."

Janeel shook her head in disbelief. "I have the feeling we are going to have to deal with a lot of *small* jokes in the very near future."

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M05-P030: USS ANUBIS: Ya'Han: Day 02 - 0345 ("Declassified Information")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Declassified Information"
[previous post was "Heading Back"]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31200.0345

At every station fingers silently moved over the controls, just as thoughts moved in every direction over the situation that had led to the ANUBIS to being recalled.  Thinking of Paris and the casualties, Ya'Han found herself almost wishing to being back at the GAMMA ERADI Cluster to deal with the shadows that had seemingly taken over the ship.  Thankfully the moment the journey back to NEW ALEXANDRIA had begun the reports of these shifting shadows had stopped.

Instead of shadows the crew now had to deal with ghosts. 28 million of them.

It had not taken long for the black haired Sec/Tac to let her professional curiosity win causing her to call up all available information on this Aegis Shield that had been deployed around the EARTH.  Ya'Han had not expected there to be a great deal of information has nothing had been mentioned about this technology in any of the security communiques from NEW ALEXANDRIA. To her surprise though there had been an extensive file on the matter which had only recently been declassified.

"Commander Shar'El, could I see you for a moment?" the Sec/Tac asked not sure she she should proceed.

"Yes Ensign?" the ExO said as she came to stand next to the Chief of Security.

"These files have recently been declassifies." The Sec/Tac's puzzlement had been impossible to miss.

"Looks like Admiral Koniki decided to open up the books," Shar'El deduced. "Whatever reason or reasons he might have had for keeping this information from us are no longer valid."

"According to the file records, there are 216 files that have been declassified and added for us to access," Ya'Han said wide eyed.

"Looks like we have some reading to do," the First Officer said before leaving the Sec/Tac to quench her curiosity.

With the apparent approval of the ExO, Ya'Han quickly located the files pertaining to the Aegis Shield and the thaleron generators.

According to the files the deployed defense network had been comprised of 30 atmospheric satellites each with a self-contained thaleron generator. These satellites held a geosynchronous orbit above the EARTH's most densely populated areas.

As Ya'Han continued reading she discovered that thaleron was a type of electro-magnetic radiation that possessed unique biogenic properties which proved to be deadly to organic life, consuming biological matter at the sub-atomic level. The added fact that thaleron radiation was capable of almost limitless expansion and that exposure at even a microscopic amount would be the death of any living thing it touched had been more than enough to send shivers down the now blue-haired Sec/Tac.

The report went on to clarify that any attack upon one of the satellites in the network would result in the release of the thaleron radiation onto the surface of the EARTH. According to the technical details at their disposal the projected estimate was that everything and everyone within five thousand square kilometres beneath an Aegis satellite would be reduced to ashes. Should one of the satellites be somehow moved and destroyed over an ocean, the long-term consequences for the EARTH's biosphere would be even more destructive.

The scowling redheaded Sec/Tac concluded that the strategy of the Neo-Essentialist had been to hold EARTH no matter the cost in innocent life.

"Are you okay?" the Chief Engineer said having present on the bridge long enough to see the color change of the NYLAAN woman.

"Just reading about the Aegis Shield," Ya'Han admitted with saddened concern.  "These Neo-Essentialist are mad, completely mad. We have to find a way to stop them before it's too late."

"We are all working on that," Sonja said, her smile having taken Ya'Han a little off guard.  "Just came by to let our Captain know that we now have warp 5.5 available."

"Helm!"

"Already increasing speed to Warp 5.5 Sir."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Hanali Han

Chief of Security / Chief Tactical Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M05-P029: USS ANUBIS: Stark: Day 1 - 0230 ("Heading Back")
"Heading Back"
[previous "Simple Madness"]

[/\]

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31200.0230

Jayson sat at the Operations station, his hands still covered with the marks of his labor on the ANUBIS' system. The ship had set a course back the NEW ALEXANDRIA the moment the engines had been ready. He knew that a few more hours could have been used but after what they had heard, no one had been willing to wait.

From across the bridge Ya'Han glanced back at Jayson, the two of them sharing feelings without words.  Paris had been erased from the surface of the EARTH and everyone felt something whether or not that had been from that planet or not.  Jayson had visited the city during one of his Academy breaks along with a few classmates. The memories he had were of a charming place filled with bistros and carefree visitors. The appeal of Paris reached to all corners of the Federation, and that had likely been why the outrage had not been limited to those who called EARTH their home.

A minor rumble passed through the ship which made the Captain look over at the Ops Officer.

"Nothing major," Jayson reported.  "The port-aft structural integrity generator is not working at full power.  As long as we stay at warp 3 or below we should not have any issues other than the occasional shake."

The Captain had not been pleased. At warp 3 the journey back to NEW ALEXANDRIA would take far longer than he had wanted it to, but pushing the engines and the ship right now risked more than a late arrival.

"Lieutenant Paquette and her engineers are on their way to that system now," ANI said as she walked up to stand next to Jayson.

"As soon as she gets it fully operational we should be able to increase speed to warp 4, maybe even 5," Stark said more out of hope than actual fact. The ANUBIS still required a great deal of repairs and there just had been so much that the Chief Engineer could do in the time that she had been given.

"The crew is tired," Shar'El quietly added.

"I know," the Captain accepted.  "Ensign Stark keep an eye on our systems and increase speed whenever possible without risking the ship or the crew."

"Aye Sir."

"Do we still have the BASTET on our sensors?" Commander Shar'El asked, the woman having been curious as to the state of the ship that they had been forced to leave behind.

"Last thing we got was them entering the GAMMA ERADI Cluster. After that nothing. Given the composition of the cluster we knew that we would not be able to follow them once they entered, and that was with us being right there next to them," Jayson answered.

"It was hoped that we might find a way to get through the interference, at last that was before we ran into those lovely miniature explosives," the First Officer continued.  "The mystery of the cluster was always going to be the BASTET's to solve but it would have been nice if we could have stayed to help if something went wrong."

"I think Paris being obliterated from existence qualifies as something wrong and requiring our attention," Stark pointed out in a way that might have been a little less respectful than it should have been.

"That is why we are heading back Ensign," the Captain said bringing the bridge to silence.

[/\]
Jayson Sousa

Chief of Operations
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M02-P039: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 2 - 0230 ("Simple Madness")
-=-=-
"Simple Madness"
[Previous post: "The Blue Planet"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Lopez' Quarters
Stardate: 31200.0230

The flickering light of a single candle danced in the middle of the small table set in between the living room couches.  Through the windows of her quarters Adriana could see the colors of the GAMMA ERADI Cluster pass by as the ship slowly made its way in.  As beautiful as the sight may have been though her eyes kept falling back on the candle and its light.

"You should get some rest," Amanda said to her sister. Although the twin had not actually been there, her presence had been felt by the Counselor throughout this ordeal.

"I can't," Adriana replied, her voice trembling as she held back her tears.  The odds had been that she had not known anyone personally out of the 28 million casualties, but the fact still remained that there had been 28 million people whose lives had been abruptly ended because of the beliefs of a single man.

"There is nothing you or anyone else on this ship can do about what happened," the illusion of the Counselor's sister said as she sat on the couch on the other side of the candle.

"How can anyone do something like that?" The Counselor asked out loud as she tried to find some logical reason for so many people to have lost their lives.  "It's simple madness."

"The Hamidian Massacre where over 300,000 people were killed was the result of a single man's wishes," Amanda said.  "Hitler is said to have been responsible for over 20 million deaths, and that's on EARTH alone. There are countless other accounts of a single person being responsible for mass murders throughout the galaxy, but the one thing they all have in common is just that -- madness."

"How do we go on?" Ensign Lopez asked, the weight of the number of casualties having simply too much for her to handle at this time.

"Sis," Amanda said as she changed her position to sit on the edge of the couch placing herself directly in front of her sister with he candle between them.  "You're the Counselor. People are going to come to you with that very same question. You cannot afford to be the one who loses her marbles on this. The rest of the crew is going to depend on you and your strength to make it through this.  How do we go on? You have to find that answer for not only your sake but everyone else's."

"You are not helping you know," the Counselor said with a quivering lip.

"I am not the one speaking to an illusion, a mirage, a mental representation of a sibling who went missing at the age of 6 some 18 years ago," the twin sister said looking back at Adriana through the flickering light of the candle.  "You needed to talk to someone, just as your shipmates will need to do sooner or later, and when they do you will be able to help them 'go on'."

"I must be as mad as that crazed Edgerton," the Counselor said not sure if she should be crying or laughing.

"Yours is a sweet madness," the image of her sibling said.  "You help people, you do not hurt them, and that is how we go on, by being there for one another no matter what."

=/\=Counselor Lopez.=/\=

The sound of the communication chime made the Counselor clean her eyes of the tears that had threatened to appear.

"Yes?"

=/\=Sorry to bother you at such an odd hours but I was wondering if you had a moment to talk?=/\= Misaki asked proving the point that had been made by Amanda.

"Of course. I doubt any of us are going to be getting any sleep soon.  Come by my office. I will have some warm sake waiting for you."

=/\=Thanks,=/\= the woman replied, =/\=that is very sweet of you. See you soon.=/\=

"See," Amanda jumped in with a smile as soon ans the channel was closed, "yours is a sweet madness."

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P038: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 2 - 0200 ("The Blue Planet")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"The Blue Planet"
[previous post (The Changing Shape of the Universe)]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31200.0200

The crew had worked long and hard while keeping a watchful eye on the shadows that surrounded them.  The alpha wave inhibitors had worked remarkably well to ward off the uneasy feelings and fears.  Maybe it had all been psychosomatic or maybe the inhibitors had actually blocked whatever mental attack the shadows had been told to have, but either way the ship had been returned to fair working condition.

"Captain on the bridge!" Sarena announced as their CO stepped out of her Ready Room and onto the ship's command deck.

"How are we doing?" Selene's question had been meant more for the crew than the ship as the Captain had been kept informed of each and every change in the vessel's status.

"The crew is tired but ready to head back to NEW ALEXANDRIA," the Executive Officer said causing Captain Iverson and Lt. Commander Janeel to share an awkward glance with one another.  Although the details of the communique from Admiral Koniki had not been made public to the crew, the general points had spread to every section in a matter of minutes.  To those not native from EARTH the news had been troubling, seeing the Federation as having been betrayed and under attack, but for those who called the blue planet home the destruction of Paris had been unthinkable and demanded an immediate counter action

"We are not returning home," the Captain stated, the tonality of her words having been carefully chosen to leave no doubt in anyone's mind that *home* had meant both EARTH and NEW ALEXANDRIA.

"Captain?" the Executive Officer gasped. Although she had not been born on EARTH, Sarena had always considered the blue planet as a very special place given that it had been the birthplace of her mother and the countless bedtime stories that had been told to the young child as she grew up on STARBASE 114.  Only a few of these stories had been about the specific city which had been destroyed, but those tales had been more than enough to make an impression on the now First Officer of the USS BASTET.

"My Ready Room."

Sarena followed her Captain silently, not that she had nothing to say, in fact the First Officer had plenty to say and in hindsight it had been for the best that the two senior officers had been behind closed doors.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Setting: USS BASTET, Captain' Ready Room
Stardate: 31200.0202

"What do you mean we are not going back to NEW ALEXANDRIA?" Valentine asked far louder than someone would have expected when addressing a starship Captain while in her own office.

"Sarena.

"WHAT?"

"Relax," Iverson calmly suggested. The Captain had expected heightened emotions but not from her own Executive Officer.  "The Admiral's orders were clear, we are to continue with our mission to find the RAMAN and its crew."

"With all due respect Sir, our place is back on EARTH to teach these Neo-Essentialist a lesson that history itself won't soon forget," Valentine retaliated with, her tone had been taken down several notches but the intensity of her words had remained forceful on the edge of enraged.

"There is nothing we can do to bring back those 28 million people," Captain Iverson pointed out, "and one more ship is not going to make a difference against that Aegis Shield.  The Admiral believes that there might be something useful on the RAMAN and we have been tasked with finding it."

"The RAMAN was destroyed," Sarena said in exasperation. "What we are looking for is a dimensional duplicate that may or may not even exist.  All we have is an intercepted communication from the CLEOPATRA which is believed to have originated from another dimension. The Admiral is sending us on a wild goose chase instead of getting us where we are needed most."

"The SOL system?"

"Exactly," Sarena confirmed only to understand that she had been corned.

"The BASTET was designed to be a transdimensional ship," the Captain continued in the same calm and control tone that she had since the two women's arrival into the Ready Room.  "How effective do you believe we are going to be in the SOL System, and in our current state?  We would need extensive repairs and then what? Jump dimensions to reappear where and do what?" Selene paused for a few moments to allow her Executive Officer to calm down a little more.  "I understand and agree with you that the Neo-Essentialist and their mad leader Richard Edgerton need to be dealt with, but doing so right now would likely mean the destruction of EARTH.  If Admiral Koniki believes that there might be a chance to find something on the RAMAN to deal with this situation without endangering EARTH, that is good enough for me."

Sarena went to say something but held back. As much as she might have hated to admit it the Captain had been right. Rushing in head first to EARTH, especially with the Aegis Shield in place and them not aware of every details of the situation would have been almost as mad as the man who had created the situation.

"My apologies Captain, I have acted inappropriately," the Executive Officer offered with sincere regret.

"No apologies required," the Captain said.  "It is that kind of passion that drives us to face impossible situations and still make it through.  We just need to think beyond what our opponents do, as the Admiral has always done."

"I will inform the crew that we are heading into the GAMMA ERADI Cluster," Valentine confirmed with a faint smile. Presented as it had, the search for the RAMAN had suddenly taken on an entirely different angle and Sarena was certain that the crew would give this mission even more than the usual best they had shown up until now.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M05-P028: USS ANUBIS: Morningstar: Day 2 - 0115
("The Changing Shape of the Universe")
##########
"The Changing Shape of the Universe"
Previous post "Shadows of the Past"
##########

"The terrorism seen through the eyes of one person are the essential and necessary actions required by the beliefs and needs of another. History alone can judge as to these actions having been the product of a visionary or of a madman."
- Sejal Rue, quoting himself as Tebarus Rue during negotiations on RUTIA IV to end the renewed terrorist attacks

=====
Setting: NEW ALEXANDRA, Admiral Koniki's Office
Stardate: Undisclosed

The senior most officer of the secret Intel base of operations and former head of Starfleet Intelligence sat at his desk, a dark and troubled expression engraved on his features.

[/\] Charles, we were right, [/\] a cloaked figure stated over an ultra secure channel. The static clearly visible on the screen and the screechy sound only hinted to the plight that had befallen EARTH and the Federation as a whole. [/\] As unfortunate as it may be, events have unfolded as we had expected them to. [/\]

"We never expected Paris," Koniki countered, the voice of the normally stoic man trembled with rage as he spoke.  "I can have my ships back in the SOL system in a few days."

[/\] The Federation, [/\] the faceless man added with emphasis [/\] the organization that we believe in, and that so many have sacrificed for, will need good men, women and ships to come out of this Neo-Essentialist mess. Right now is not your time. Our greatest advantage is that you have been spared from this nightmare. You are your people have not been touched and that is worth more than we both could have expected it to be. Soon those who are left are going to need you and your people.  You need to be patient. [/\]

"I can have one of my transports..." the Admiral began before being interrupted.

[/\] It's too late for me Charles. Who knows, we might run into each other in another dimensional time line, in the meantime be safe old friend. [/\]

Before Koniki could add anything the image on the screen vanished to be replaced by static where the emblem of the Federation should have been.

The Admiral paused for an instant and turned to look at the docking bays through the large window set behind his desk. There he could see the ships that were there, the ships that had been built to deal with a situation like the one that had come to pass, ships that would now be called to step out of the shadows and into the battle to save EARTH from itself.

Although the majority of the vessels operating from NEW ALEXANDRIA had been out on various missions, the USS HATHOR, USS HORUS and USS SCARAB had been home. Those ships had been more than enough for a show of strength and support but Koniki held fast in giving the order that would have seen their crew called into action.

"Allyson," the tired looking man called after having pressed a control on his desk.

=/\= Yes Admiral? =/\= the always cheerful blond-haired receptionist answered, her voice echoing a carefree attitude that the head of the NEW ALEXANDRIA complex wished he could echo.

"I need the most up-to-date location report for all units," Koniki requested while wondering how he would go about informing everyone under his command of what had taken place.  NEW ALEXANDRIA had purposefully operated as a separate entity, isolating itself and its people from the politics of the Federation and the rest of the galaxy.  Due to his position and duties he had kept abreast of the events surrounding the Neo-Essentialists and their rise to power, but no one else had needed to know this. At least not until now.

=/\= The ANUBIS and BASTET are still at the outer edge of the GAMMA ERADI Cluster; the APOPHIS is currently with the EGYPT gathering supplies on RISA; The CLEOPATRA is almost finished with the Selay mission; the MA'AT is rendering assistance to a Grazerite freighter; the NILE is home bound and should be here in just over four hours; the SEKHMET is currently patrolling inside Romulan space; and as you are aware the HATHOR, HORUS and SCARAB are here. =/\=

"Thank you Allyson," Koniki acknowledged. "I will personally contact each of the units that are currently out. Have docking controls ready and all staff on stand-by, the fleet will be coming home."

=/\= Of course Admiral, I will inform Commander O'Dell of the fleet's imminent return. =/\=

=====
Setting: USS ANUBIS, Captain's Ready Room
Stardate: 31200.0115

For Erik to say that it had been a long day would have been a drastic understatement from the Native American. Everyone, including himself had worked like mad to get the ANUBIS to a point where it would be able to operate without falling apart. At least it seemed that luck had been on their side as nothing new had happened to hinder their repair efforts.

The sound of the door chime made the Captain sigh before he slowly rose his head to look at the source of the offending sound.  "Enter, but you'd better have a cup of Risian Tea with you or I might not be overly friendly at this time."

The door whooshed open to reveal the ANUBIS' First Officer, Commander Shar'El who as a matter of fact had been holding a steaming cup in her hands.

"Oh, this can't be good," Erik actually laughed as he watched his Executive Officer approach his desk.  When the Native American saw the expression on Shar'El's face as she placed the cup in front of him the Captain's smile melted instantly. Whatever fatigue he had allowed himself to feel, whatever lightheartedness he had permitted himself to have were pushed away leaving nothing but the Commanding Officer of the ANUBIS.

"We just received a priority-1 message from Admiral Koniki," the First Officer explained as she reached for a PADD that had been on her belt.  "The ANUBIS along with the other ships have been recalled to NEW ALEXANDRIA."

"Recalled! Why?" Erik demanded as he snatched the PADD from the woman's hand.  "What is Koniki up to now? It better not be another one of his wild chases for enemies of the Federation.  That man thinks that all of the worst case scenarios are right there behind our doors."

"Well this one kicked the door clean off its frame to hit us in the forhead," Shar'El offered adding a long deep sigh before continuing. "The Aegis Shield, an atmospheric satellite defence parameter armed with thaleron generators has been deployed around the EARTH, and it seems that Paris was destroyed as a show of strength and resolve by the new man in power. The initial reports claim over 28 million casualties.  The full details are on that PADD.  EARTH, and the Federation are as of now under Neo-Essentialist control and all ships not with them have been branded as outlaws."

The Native American paused as he rapidly scanned through the pages upon pages of data that his First Officer had just handed over to him.  "How long before we can get underway?"

"Lieutenant Paquette said we should be able to have limited warp within the hour," the ExO reported having obviously checked with the CEO before coming to the Captain with the news of EARTH's situation.

"What about the BASTET? Will they be able to follow us?" The Native American inquired, knowing all too well that given what had transpired the ANUBIS would be heading back with or without them.

"Actually, the Admiral has ordered the BASTET to proceed with their mission," the Commander replied.  "I have the feeling that he believes there is something on the RAMAN that might play a part in all of this."

"Plans within plans within plans," Erik heavily sighed. "That man will never change," the Native American added as he stood from behind his desk.  "I want us heading back to NEW ALEXANDRIA as soon as possible and let Paquette know that I will want more than *limited* warp speed."

"Yes Sir."

"Shar'El."

"Yes Captain?" The First Officer acknowledged not having moved from where she had been standing.

"Get me everything you have on these Neo-Essentialists, that Aegis Shield and the current state of EARTH and the Federation," the Captain ordered.  We need to get up-to-date on this situation and we can't afford to wait for Koniki to decide what we should and should not be aware of.

"Yes Sir. The PADD contains a preliminary report on the situation but you will have the rest before we arrive at NEW ALEXANDRIA," Shar'El offered before leaving the ANUBIS' CO to contemplate what he had just been made aware of.

Once again alone in his Ready Room, Erik debated for a moment as to what do to next. There had been far too many questions running through his mind to allow him to focus on anything else at this time, so the Native American returned to his desk and picked up the PADD that his First Officer had brought him.

Starfleet was now under the command of Admiral Dexter Marxx who sat in the center chair of the USS CENTURY.  That ship along with the rest of the fleet, at least those ships that had not been taken over by the Neo-Essentialists, were besieging EARTH.  Thanks to the Aegis Shield all of humanity was being held hostage as any attempt by anyone to circumvent it would mean the complete annihilation of the planet's surface and its inhabitants. Paris had only been a proof that the system could do as it had been designed for, and that the head of the Neo-Essentialist, Richard Edgerton, had the resolve to use it should he be challenged in any way.

Moray, the former President of the United Federation of Planets along with his entire cabinet had apparently been murdered quite a while back. Obviously Admiral Koniki had thought it best not to divulge that little bit of information to the rest of the NEW ALEXANDRIA staff.  Instead of a Federation Council, Richard Edgerton had taken on the self-appointed position of dictator.

The new President of the United Federation of Planets, Sardak, and his temporary cabinet had to deal with this mess from the USS DEMETER which stood safe and sound behind the blockade of vessels still loyal to the ideals and values of the United Federation of Planets.  Hopefully the ANUBIS as well as the other ships operating from NEW ALEXANDRIA would be able to assist instead of being mere spectators as they had unknowingly been for far too long.

--==(/\)==--
Francois Charette

Commanding Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC 18501

AND

Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA
M05-P027: USS ANUBIS: Ya'Han: Day 01 - 2145 ("Shadows of the Past")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Shadows of the Past"
[previous post was "Icy Darkness"]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.2145

Following the briefing everyone had returned to their stations more aware of their situation and of the urgency that they were under to get their respective ships out.  The meeting had also insured that the Sec/Tac had been far more aware of each and every shadow, that is appeared to move or not.

How had they been meant to defend against something that they could barely be aware of? How were they suppose to fight against the creeping cold fear that made their way into their head? As Ya'Han closed her eyes to calm herself, memories of shadows and the fear that they had instilled came rushing to her like a tidal wave. 

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
FLASHBACK
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Sitting at the back of the dirty cargo hold, the young fugitive held her legs close to her shivering body. There had been two reasons for this posture, the first having been to help Ya`Han keep warm as there had been limited heat in the room she had been put in for the journey. The other had been to offer some level of protection from the men who had allowed her onboard.

Her need to escape quickly had been greater than her need to find safe travel arrangements. This had caused the runaway to make several hasty decisions, one of which had been to select the nearest ship over any other.  No questions had been asked by the crew and the ship had been small enough not to draw the attention of the NYLAAN or Ferengi patrols.  Truth be known, Ya`Han figured that no one would have ever expected a daughter of the High Sovereign to be inside such a rundown trade vessel.

From the moment she had stepped inside the ship Ya`Han had felt distrust towards the crew.  There had been something about the way they walked, they way they spoke, and most important the way they looked at her that had instilled that feeling.  Not having had any other alternatives for her escape though, she had been left with no other choice but to make due with her feelings.

Since this had been the first time the youngest daughter of the High Sovereign had ever felt this way, Ya`Han did her best to dismiss it as having been nothing more than childish fear.  During her travels away from her home world though Ya`Han would learn in the harshest of ways to trust that feeling more and more beyond any other.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
End of FLASHBACK
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.2146

The black haired Sec/Tac closed her eyes tightly as she pushed that memory out of her mind, but that proved to be pointless as the effort only allowed for another memory to take its place.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
FLASHBACK
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

The first cargo freighter had been a luxury liner when compared to the one she had found her way in this time. The floor of the hold had been so grimy and sticky that the runaway daughter of the High Sovereign had decided to stay standing.  The flickering lights and frequent severe jolts eventually made the young NYLAAN reconsider leaving to to seek refuge in a corner between two crates.

Ya'Han could not clearly identify if the shivers she felt had been due to the cold or because she had been scared. The shadows that surrounded her appeared as if they had been watching her every move, something she knew could not be.  Still she found herself cowering in the corner hoping that the journey would be a quick one to wherever they had been going.  Although she had been shivering uncontrollably Ya'Han managed to close her eyes long enough to find an uneasy sleep.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
End of FLASHBACK
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.2147

The Sec/Tac could feel her body trembling as if she had been there once again. The memories had been vivid, so much so that Ya'Han actually found herself scared of opening her eyes.  Back on that cargo ship she had woken to find the Captain and his Ferengi First Officer looking down at her in a way that to this date still made her feel sick to her stomach.

If she opened her eyes now would they be there? Would they attack her in the same manner that they had once before? Would her lips be stained again by her own blood as they treated her as the worthless runaway that she had made herself to be?

"Ya'Han!"

The call had been stern yet caring one and the voice had been that of a woman, not of a low life freighter Captain of troll first mate.  Ya'Han opened her eyes to see the ANUBIS' First Officer standing before her, an expression of great concern looking back at the Sec/Tac.

"Relax and take a deep breath," Shar'El whispered with a reassuring smile that instantly warmed Ya'Han's to her core. "Doctor Doyanne will be back shortly with the alpha wave inhibitors. In the meantime you need to keep those memories under control."

Ya'Han softly nodded her head, thankful that Shar'El had both the ability and compassion that she had.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Hanali Han

Chief of Security / Chief Tactical Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M02-P037: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 1 - 2145 ("Icy Darkness")
"Icy Darkness"
Previous post: "Shadow Meeting"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.2145

"Living icy shadows," Aki quietly muttered to herself as she walked out of the Observation Lounge and back onto the bridge of the BASTET.  The Asian woman knew, being a scientist and all, that anything and everything was possible in this universe, still the idea of the ships having been invaded by some sort of dark, cold, non-corporeal life form had been a little troubling.

"What gets me is that we can't even detect them with our instruments," the Executive Officer whispered back as the woman walked past the Chief Science Officer. Aki froze for a moment realizing too late that her words had been spoken louder than she had wanted them to, but since nothing else had been said by Commander Valentine no harm had been done.

Aki returned to her station but not before giving the bridge a thorough scan to see if she would be able to locate any of these *icy shadowy life form*, not that they had officially been identified as being such.  Given all that they had experienced, it would not have been entirely unthinkable that this moving darkness had only been a trick of the mind.

"Lt. Mitshiba, can we have sensors in full working order in four hours?" the Executive Officer asked. "Would be nice to be able to detect *something* when we finally manage to get into the GAMMA ERADI Cluster."

"Sensors will be fully operational by then," Aki replied. "Not sure how effective they will be though.  Thanks to the constant flux of the electromagnetic and gravitational fields inside sensors will be rendered nearly useless.  I will see if Lt. Cmdr Maya has something to offer but I suspect that our scanning range is going to be greatly limited at best."

"This is going to be fun," Ensign Lopez sarcastically chuckled.  "I'll head down to sickbay and get us some of those alpha-wave inhibitors."

"You might want to grab a few medical tricorders on the way back," Mitshiba said trying to come across as serious as possible.

"Medical tricorders?" Lopez repeated not understand why the Asian woman had made such a request.

"We might be able to use them to supplement our external sensors.

Some of the officers on the bridge sighed, others shook their heads and the rest simply went on with their duties having ignored the failed attempt at a joke that had only been meant to lighten the mood, even if only in the slightest.

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M02-P036: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 1 - 2130 ("Shadow Meeting")
=-=
"Shadow Meeting"
[previous post was "Shadow Paranoia" by the commanding Karen]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Observation Lounge
Stardate: 31199.2130

It had taken a little longer than usual but all of the senior officers had finally made their way to the Observation Lounge as per the request of the BASTET's First Officer.  Looking at the gathered officers, one could only guess at what had been happening as expressions of concern, anxiety and even fear could be seen looking back at the Commanding Officer who herself had not appeared unaffected by the darkness that had taken over the ship.

"Are we all here?" Selene asked wanting to confirm that the senior staff of the ANUBIS had also been present for this meeting via an open and encoded comm channel.

=/\= We are all here, =/\= Captain Morningstar confirmed, the communication having been kept to audio only to save energy and to make it easier for everyone to participate should there be a need.

"Status report," Captain Iverson demanded as she glanced over her shoulder while standing at the end of the table as if to make sure that nothing would jump out of the nearby corner.

"We are working on 60% power and there are still several systems that are being worked on as we speak.  The best estimate for us being able to be at full operational status is 4 hours," Commander Valentine reported as her eyes scrutinized the spaces between the other sitting officers.

=/\= We have a bigger ship, which means bigger boo boos, =/\= the redheaded Chief Engineer of the ANUBIS cut in with. =/\= We are also at about 60% power but since we have cannibalized so many systems to repair others it will take us *weeks* to fix everything if we are to do it without the assistance of a dry dock facility. Let's face it, with holes in the external bulkheads the size of Tosk's head we are lucky to still being on one piece.  That said we should be able crawl our way out of this explosive-filled area of space in 4 to 5 hours if nothing goes unexpectedly boom on us. =/\=

"What about the crew and these shadows?" the CO continued, this having been the real reason for the gathering of both senior staffs.

"Nearly 78% of the crew have reported sightings of moving shadows," Commander Janeel, the BASTET's ILO reported.

=/\= Might be because the ship is larger, but for us only 48% of the crew have reported similar sightings, =/\= the ExO / ILO of the ANUBIS added.  =/\= The problem is that our sensors are not showing anything on either the ANUBIS or the BASTET.  If these shadows are in fact something more, we have yet to figure out a way to detect them. =/\=

"Many members of the BASTET who reported seeing something strange have also described an intense cold," Lt. Mitshiba, the CSciO of the BASTET pointed out.

=/\= We had a few similar reports,=/\= Lt. Cmdr Maya confirmed, =/\=unfortunately it seems that this extreme cold can only be perceived by a biological entity and only when in apparent close proximity to whatever these shadows are.  Internal sensors on the ANUBIS have not been able to detect any sort of temperature shift, regardless of how small it may be leaving me to believe that the sensation is mentally not physically triggered.=/\=  It was easy to stipulate that the CSciO of the ANUBIS had spent a fair amount of time researching this matter, a fact that had not surprised anyone who knew her.

Out of sight of the crew of the BASTET, Shar'El nodded her head in agreement with the statement made by Lt. Cmdr Maya, the Ulian having first hand experienced the mental nature of this absolute cold.

"Maybe we are dealing with some sort of telepathic ability," the BASTET CNS suggested. "The sensation of cold would be perceived by the mind and translated into a physical reaction instead of the other way around," Ensign Lopez explained.

=/\= Is there any way to protect ourselves from this? =/\= the Chief of Security of the USS ANUBIS asked, Ya'Han having instantly identified a possible weakness that could be used to further cripple the two ships.

=/\= Blocking general telepathic abilities is already very difficult,=/\= Doctor Doyanne stated from experience.  =/\= Trying to block a specific psychic attack would be impossible without a better understanding of what this ability entails. =/\=

=/\= Maybe we could equip key personnel with Alpha-wave inhibitors,=/\= Lt. Dalziel, the CNS of the ANUBIS suggested.  =/\= It may be a shot in the dark but at least it would be better than doing nothing to protect ourselves. =/\=

=/\= Not going to help all that much if the rest of the crew goes into full paranoia,=/\= Ensign Stark, the OPS of the ANUBIS sighed.  =/\= We need to focus all available resources on fixing the ships. The longer we stay here the more vulnerable we all become to these shadows, whatever they may be. =/\=

"Then it's settled," Captain Iverson agreed. "We need to get our ships back to operating status with the utmost urgency.  Let's have the medical and science teams working together to try and find a way to block these psychic attacks while the rest of us works on getting the ships back into working order."

=/\= Then I guess it's time for us to get to work, =/\= Erik said bringing the meeting to an end.  =/\= Keep communications open between the two ships so that we can work together with the greatest possible efficiency given our respective situations. =/\=

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P035: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 1 - 2050 ("Shadow Paranoia")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Shadow Paranoia"
[previous post (Freezing Assets)]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 4 outside Astrometrics
Stardate: 31199.2050

As far as anyone else had been concerned Sarena and Misaki were locked in a staring contest in the middle of the corridor right outside Astrometrics. Commander Valentine was trying to ascertain what had taken over the CSciO while Lt. JG Mitshiba attempted to figure out if the ExO had been who she appeared to be.

"Are you alright Lieutenant?" Valentine asked, thinking that it had been best to break the silence if any sort of answers were to be obtained.

"I'm not sure," Mitshiba answered with hesitation.  "All these fluctuating lights are making me see things.

"Like oddly moving shadows?" The ExO asked, thinking that this had been the most logical explanation to account for the woman's reaction and state.  "I've seem them too."

"Yes," the CSciO admitted with a distinct sigh of relief. She had not been going crazy.

"Valentine to the bridge," Sarena said after tapping her comm badge.

=/\= Go ahead Commander, =/\= the voice of the ILO was heard offering a reply.

"Are the internal sensors working? I would like t check something."

=/\= They are, but they have not picking up anything *strange* hiding in the shadows. =/\=

"Start collecting eye-witness accounts and see if the ANUBIS can help," Valentine ordered after a few seconds of silence during which she had pondered what course of action to take.  "They keep telling us that their sensors are better than anything out there."

=/\= Their sensors are better than ours, =/\= the ILO confirmed, =/\= That is why I already asked for their help in that regards. Nothing was found on their end either. As for eye witness accounts, they are multiplying rather rapidly. =/\=

"Why was I not informed of your concerns before contacting the ANUBIS?" the ExO asked sounding slightly peeved by the obvious breach in following the chain of command.

=/\= I thought I was going crazy, =/\= Janeel admitted in her defence.

"Seems to be going around," Mitshiba chuckled. "There might be something more than just a visual perception of shifting shadows at play here.  Maybe whatever it is that is making us see this is also affecting our minds making us question our senses."

"Board without being detected, make the crew become paranoid so that you can move about with greater ease, and then do whatever you want because no one will be paying attention to what is actually happening.  That's a tactic worthy of the Romulans," the First Officer said having started in a tone of admiration to end with a sign of complete disgust.

"What can we do?" Mitshiba asked, consciously fighting to the best of her abilities the paranoia that Commander Valentine had made her aware of.

"Lt. Cmdr Janeel, have all members of the senior staff report to the Observation Lounge and see if we can get the ANUBIS to do the same. I think it is time for us all to get on the same page about what is happening. Dealing with the mines might have been only the first step in whatever the deal is with the GAMMA ERADI Cluster."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M05-P026: USS ANUBIS: Stark: Day 1 - 2050 ("Freezing Assets")
"Freezing Assets"
[previous "Finding Something"]

[/\]

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Deck 6, Corridor
Stardate: 31199.2050

Jason had made his way to where the break in the coolant pipe had occurred.  It had not been an exaggeration that the leak had only been the top of the iceberg. The entire corridor appeared as if it had been made of swiss cheese, and not the good kind.

With all of the wires and pieces of panels scattered all about it had been a miracle that the exact location of the leak had been found.  Getting to it in order to fix it was an entirely different problem.

Given the state of the ship and the fact that he needed to get busy, Jason moved in and offered to help. As the Chief of Operations, he knew the specifics of each and every conduits throughout the ANUBIS. All that he needed to do now was to put that knowledge into practice to get things back to working order.

Without the resources of their home docking area, and without enough power to simply create all of the parts that needed to be replaced, the best that could be done was to patch hole and splice wires.  Damaged bio-gel packs would have to be bypassed until such time as new ones could be replicated, that meant that the ship's system would not be working at their best.

Jason hoped in silence that they would be able to make the bulk of the needed repairs in time before the next thing happened.  This was the ANUBIS and like it or not something else *always* happened. No one on the ship could complain that life was boring, although there were times when Jayson almost wished he had been stationed on a quiet cargo ship.

"That patch job is never going to hold," one of the two workers said.

"All it has to do is hold until we can replace the entire conduit," Jayson said.  "Right now we need to just get things working at their minimum level, we can worry about the rest after."

When the lights flickered Jayson thought he saw another shadow moving, the problem with that one was that it seemed to move not as randomly as the other he had seen earlier.  Claiming to see shadows moving would be a certain way to get Doctor Doyanne to give someone some quiet time with a ship's counselor, but he just could not shake the feeling.

"You would think that if I was losing my mind I would know," the OPS Officer muttered to no one as he did his best to convince himself that it had all been in his head.

"Looks like we're are going to have t look at the environmental setting as well," one of the engineers said.

"You're right, it does feel like the temperature has dropped several degrees."

Jayson had not realise this until it was mentioned, but now that it had been said the OPS Officer could clearly feel that the temperature in this part of the ship had dropped.  A chill creeped down his back as he watched another shadow moving out of sight as if somehow it had been the cause of the drop in temperature.

[/\]
Jayson Sousa

Chief of Operations
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M05-P025: USS ANUBIS: Shar'El: Day 1 - 2050 ("Finding Something")
=-=
"Finding Something"
[previous post was "Living Darkness" by the frightened Dawn]
=-=

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Deck A-4, Intel Gathering Center
Stardate: 31199.2050

With the scans requested from the IGC's Stations 4 and 5 completed and their results passed on to Shar'El, the ILO had not been surprised to see that the data matched the preliminary reports. Nothing out of the ordinary had been found on either the biological or energy readouts.

The ILO of the BASTET had called in a somewhat agitated state requesting the assistance of the ANUBIS' ExO / ILO in determining what had been on the ship with them. The fact that Shar'El had seen something that closely matched what Janeel had described inside the IGC only made the black haired woman even less likely to consider that her counterpart had lost her mind.

Whatever the sensors had reported Shar'El knew that there had been something odd at play. What remained was to discover what this unknown was and how it would affect the two crews.

With he IGC sealed as per her recent orders, the ExO / ILO turned her attention closer. If indeed there had been something in the IGC Shar'El would do everything in her power to discover and expose it.  Since normal sensor scans had proven ineffective to find anything on the BASTET, the black haired woman opted for less standard methods.

Like a predator in search for a prey, Shar'El meticulously scanned the room in search of anything odd. Having expected that whatever she had been looking for had been aware of her search, the ExO / ILO paid extra attention to the edges of her visual field. Her ability to read people's memories required her to be in a direct line of sight, something that would be impossible to accomplish on an entity trying desperately not to be seen, so the Commander had to find a way to trick it.  Whatever *it* might have been.

Not looking directly at any of the IGC's personnel, so as to avoid picking up random memories that would have distracted Shar'El from her goal, the ExO / ILO focussed on the outer screens and the shadows moving in the corner of her eye.  The coldness she sensed in her mind was attributed to the fact that there had been no one on the receiving end of her telepathic search, at least that had been the explanation Shar'El had provided to herself.

From the corner of her eye the ExO / ILO picked up an oddly shifting shadow, and as she did so the coldness she had experienced in her mind grew to being nearly unbearable.  If Shar'El had been asked to describe the sensation at that exact moment, the only word that she would have been able to use would have been "perfect."  A complete and absolute absence of not only heat but of color and shape. Whatever her mind had managed to touch had been as black and cold as could be in not only this universe but all others as well.

"Commander, are you alright?" one of the IGC technicians asked having noticed that the ExO / ILO had completely stopped moving.  When Shar'El failed to reply the technician walked up to the center area and gently touched the woman's hand to get her attention. His hand instantly withdrew upon touching the black hair woman's frozen skin.

As little as it might have been though, the warmth of the man's touch had been enough to bring Shar'El out of her *frozen* state.

"What happened?" the ExO / ILO asked as she felt waves upon waves of chills sweep through her body as if she had just emerged from some deep freeze.

"You weren't moving," the puzzle reply came. "Thought maybe something was wrong."

"Yes," Shar'El confirmed. "There is something is very wrong."

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P034: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 1 - 2045 ("Living Darkness")
"Living Darkness"
Previous post: "Zipping and Bumping"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Astrometrics, Deck 4
Stardate: 31199.2045

Aki's nerves had not settled in the slightest. Every shifting shadow had been enough to have the Asian jump out of her seat.  Maybe this had something to do with the events leading to the rescue of Ensign Lopez from the KROGEN or maybe it had to do with Mitshiba's over active imagination. Either way the Chief Science Officer had found it increasingly difficult to focus on the task at hand.

Even the gentle movements of the noble gases of the GAMMA ERADI Cluster had begun to appear suspicious to the Scientist. At times Aki could almost see the clouds moving towards the BASTET and ANUBIS, at least that was when the main screen of the Astrometrics lab was not flickering on and off.  Like the shadows that she had seen in the room, the clouds appeared to be moving in an odd manner. Of course none of her instruments registered these odd movements leaving Lt. Mitshiba to feel as if she had truly lost her mind.

Aki let out a long defeated sigh as the screen and lights went out in Astrometrics. The darkness had been perfect thanks to the emergency lights not having kicked in.  There had been nothing for the Asian woman to do but to sit and wait for the power to return. At least, while in this perfect darkness, she could not see any shifting shadows or strangely moving noble clouds.

As blind as she had been made to be, her body could still respond to strange feelings and touches, which it did.

The light came back on just as Aki screeched at the top of her lungs, certain that something cold and inhuman had brushed against her leg. It had felt as cold as space but nothing had been there when she looked.  Overtaken by fear Aki scrambled to the nearest door certain beyond a doubt that something had been in the room with her.

As much as her eyes and common sense indicated that nothing had been there, the Asian woman could no longer fight back the triggered response. The basic flight or fight reaction had taken over and since she could not identify or even see the cause of this feeling, the only course of action had been to run away in search of somewhere safe to be.

Not looking where she had been going, instead focussed on what she had been running away from, Aki failed to notice the very physical form of the BASTET's First Officer. Following the rather brutal impact, the two women stared at each other, Mitshiba wondering if the ExO had in fact been who she appeared to be while Valentine gazed back wondering what had taken over the CSciO.

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M05-P024: USS ANUBIS: Paquette: Day 1 – 2040 ("Zipping and Bumping")
=====
"Zipping and Bumping"
Previous post – Hanali’s "Past Feelings"
=====

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Starboard Aft shield generator
Stardate: 31199.2040

In order not to scare anyone and to help keep her true means of moving about the ship so fast, the IGC transport sequence ended with the CEO materializing in the corridor outside her intended destination. As Sonja entered the room her arrival was ignored by the engineers who were already busy with their work.

"The power relays were completely fused," ANI reported having been the only one to notice the CEO's arrival. Aside from the technicians in the IGC along with the ILO, the Avatar had been the only other crew member to know where the Chief Engineer was and how she managed to get there so fast. "It will take at least another 20 minutes to finish replacing them.”

"That's alright," the redhead sighed heavily, "I doubt that the power distribution grid would be able to handle running all of the generators at the same time. I can't even get half the ablative armour to materialize."

"The current state of the ANUBIS is actually remarkable," the Avatar offered. "Given that more than 87% of all our systems were beyond mildly damage following our run in with the miniature mines. We could be in a far worst situation."

"Don't get me started with those," Sonja hissed with frustration. "If we ever come across the genius who came up with these hell-spawn spore explosives, I will be shoving a cargo bay full of his creations where the sun doesn't shine."

“That would be most unpleasant," ANI noted with a faint smile making it known that despite being an emotionless artificial life form, the joke had not been lost on her.”

"That's the idea lass," the redhead added with a thick Scottish accent before reverting back to her normal voice. "Looks like you have this one under control, I'll check on the port side generator."

Having returned to the corridor and while waiting to be beamed to the location she had specified the CEO noted something moving down the corridor. At first Sonja thought that it had been another crew member but as the transport sequence began her eyes clearly noted that whatever it was that had moved had not been human or even close to it.

Upon arrival at her destination, Sonja sighed and rubbed her eyes. “As efficient as all this zipping around the ship may be I think it’s affecting my eyes or my mind,” the Chief Engineer said knowing that Shar’El would be listening in.

=/\= How so? =/\= the ILO asked without delay.

"Believe it or not I think I saw the Boogie Man," Sonja said in all seriousness.

=/\= The what? =/\= Shar’El inquired. =/\= What sort of creature or life form are you referring to? =/\=

"You never heard of the Boogie Man?” the redhead gasped. “The monster under the bed; the bonesetter; Mr. Hoogie Boogie; the Thing; Jason; the creature under the stairs; you know things that usually go bump in the night."

=/\= Jayson? =/\= The ILO noted having singled the only thing she recognized.

"Really? That’s all you got from that list?" Sonja said shaking her head. "I need a drink."

=====
Lorraine Paquette

Lieutenant JG Sonja Paquette [Access Character BIO for Sonja Paquette]
Chief Engineering Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC 18501
M05-P023: USS ANUBIS: Ya'Han: Day 01 - 2040 ("Past Feelings")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Past Feelings"
[previous post was "A Personal Argument"]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Deck 11, Forward Torpedo Launcher
Stardate: 31199.2040

The woman's hair had been shifting from solid black to bright red in a reflection of her growing frustration.  Luckily for Ya'Han she had been alone in the small room which her entire body inside a torpedo launch tube. Everyone else had been busy elsewhere fixing something on the endless list of things that had been damaged.  Every so often the Sec/Tac found herself amazed that the ship had fared as well as it had given the pounding that they had received.

The phaser banks had taken quite a bit of damage but thanks to the engineering teams working with her own people, most had been restored to basic working condition. The targeting would not be 100% accurate but at least they would be able to fire should the Captain give the order.  Unfortunately firing torpedoes would not be so easy.

The torpedo tubes had buckled making them unusable.  Even after the debris had been removed, the launch tubes needed to be tested and calibrated before being cleared for use.  The last thing the Sec/Tac wanted was for one of the torpedoes to explode while it was being launched.

Ya'Han's frustration came from the fluctuating lights and power which delayed and even at times reset her efforts.  Luckily for her, being plunged in total darkness while stuck in a small enclosed space had not been an issue.  Memories of her time on the run from her father kept resurfacing, which had been another reason which explained the reappearing bright red color of her hair.

A strange chill made its way up her spine causing the Sec/Tac to quickly exit the torpedo tube she had been in. Ya;Han had not bee sure what she had expected to find, but when noticed nothing but shadows in the room, something in the back of her head made her feel as if something had not been right.

With lights flickering as they were, it made sense that the shadows would appearing as if they had been moving.  Ya'Han could clearly remember a similar feeling when she had been on one of the many freighter she had found herself on as she escaped Ferengi control space.  Back then she feared every shifting shadows, as any child desperately running away from home would.  Yet for an unexplainable reason, the black haired woman felt as she had felt beck then.

Something about these shadows had brought forth feelings that Ya'Han had believed long gone.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Hanali Han

Chief of Security / Chief Tactical Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M02-P033: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 1 - 2040 ("A Personal Argument")
-=-=-
"A Personal Argument"
[Previous post: "Looking For Something"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Counselling Department
Stardate: 31199.2040

As the ship's Counselor, Adriana had done everything that she could to help. Those with physical injuries had been taken care of by the medical staff and sent back to their stations to help with the repairs to the BASTET. Those with psychological scars suffered from the pounding they had received had either accepted the few words of reassurance the CNS had offered or had flat out avoided the woman entirely.

There would be time to conduct a more thorough evaluation of the crew but right now had certainly not been the time.  Getting the BASTET back to basic operational status had been the one and only priority for the crew which left Adriana at a lost of what to do to help.

"Remember," Amanda said as she sat on her sister's desk, "you wanted to be a ship's Counselor."

"I didn't have a lot of choices," Adriana pointed out without holding back since she had been completely alone in her office. "I wanted to join Starfleet to go looking for you and this was the only field where I had any chance of success in. Dad is the scientist being an Exo-Biologist and mom never had an issue dealing with broken bones and blood hence why she is a nurse.  The only thing I got from her was the desire to help people but there is no way that I could do what she does. Not that you would know anything about that."

"That's not fair," the image of the Counsellor's twin scowled back as she jumped off the desk and went to stand face-to-face with her sister.  "Do you truly believe that I wanted to be taken way, to grow up away from mom and dad?  Do you think that I wanted my sister to believe that she was in any way obliged to dedicate her life to finding me?"

For a split second Adriana forgot the fact that the person she had been seeing and speaking to for so very long had been nothing more than a figment of her imagination, an illusion incapable of returning the hug that she had so desperately wanted and needed.  As she stumbled towards her desk, Ens. Lopez thought she noticed something moving in the corner of her office.

With tear filled eyes and being in an emotionally agitated state, the CNS dismissed the shifting shadow has having been nothing more than something she had imagined.  Given the extensive talks and arguments she all too frequently had with her sister, that thought of having imagined something had not been a difficult one to accept.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M05-P022: USS ANUBIS: Shar'El: Day 1 - 2040 ("Looking for Something")
=-=
"Looking for Something"
[previous post was "Shadowhunting" by the frustrated Jayson]
=-=

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Deck A-4, Intel Gathering Center
Stardate: 31199.2040

The large circular room had been designed by Admiral Koniki himself to be the apex of efficiency, at least that had been the official story before the ExO / ILO had enlisted the help of the ship's CEO and Avatar to bring in some upgrades.  Thanks to these subtle modifications Shar'El could now keep an eye on every sector surrounding the ship for several light years in all direction as well as monitor with great ease every square centimeter of the ship.  From behind the secured doors of the IGC there had been little that escaped the scrutiny of the Intelligence Liaison Operative.

"Lieutenant Paquette is reporting in," one of the IGC technicians announced. "Work on power conduit C-124 has been completed."

"She's good," the ExO / ILO admitted with a beaming smile, the CEO having proven the extent of her skills to perfection. "Initiate site-to-site transport to her next stated objective," Shar'El ordered. Using the IGC's internal sensors insured that Sonja's every move were followed and that she would not waste a single second going from one location to the next. Using the sensors and transporter in this manner gave the rest of the crew the impression that their Chief Engineer had super-human skills, a perception that the First Officer had no intention of dispelling anytime soon.  After all, any transport initiated from the IGC were not recorded on the official ship's log so there had been no way for the general crew to know how the CEO had been moving about so quickly from one section to another.

"Receiving a communication from the BASTET," another IGC technician reported. "It's Lt. Cmdr. Janeel."

"Transfer to my station," the ExO / ILO ordered curious as to what might have prompted her ILO counterpart to contact the ANUBIS this way.  "What can I do for you Janeel?"

=/\= Need you help with something. =/\= the BASTET's ILO / Mission Specialist said hesitantly. =/\= Are your sensors operational? =/\=

Out of sheer habit Shar'El glanced down at the IGC's system status readout and confirmed that although the sensors had not been working at 100% they had been well above the standards set by Starfleet.

"Sensors are working and we are keeping an eye on those miniature mines," the ExO / ILO reported.  "Looks like we managed to stop them for good, at least in our immediate area."

=/\= Can you scan the inside of the BASTET? =/\= Janeel asked, the bluntness of the question having taking Shar'El somewhat off guard.

"Yes," the ExO / ILO replied cautiously, "what's going on?"

=/\= Are you picking up anything weird? =/\=

"Aside from your request?" Shar'El shot back not having expected to have another ILO be so vague, especially when dealing with a fellow member of SFI.

=/\= Sorry, =/\= Janeel sighed. =/\= It may be the stress, maybe the oxygen scrubbers are not working as they should, but I saw something that was not normal. So either I am losing my mind or there is *something* onboard with us. =/\=

"Something?" the ExO / ILO repeated with emphasis.

=/\= Shadows moving in a way that is... not natural, =/\= the BASTET's ILO explained, the tone of her voice making is evident that she had begun to question her own sanity.

"Station 5, initiate a full sensor sweep of the BASTET. I want every life form pinned and identified regardless of how small or faint the signal may be," Shar'El ordered before returning her attention to the monitor displaying her counterpart before issuing her next set of orders.  "Station 4, give me a full power readout including energy distribution. If this *something* is energy based instead of biological I want to know where it is."

=/\= Thank you, =/\= Janeel acknowledged. =/\= It's probably nothing, just my nerves and fatigue. =/\=

"Probably," Shar'El agreed as she glanced over to the technicians at stations 4 and 5 to see if they had completed their scan.  As she did so Shar'El saw something completely unexpected.  As she scrutinized a shadow that the ExO / ILO believed had moved as Janeel had described, the woman continued speaking.  "Then again we both know that there are things out here that go well beyond our immediate understanding.  It is not a question of losing one's sanity but accepting coming face-to-face with things that we can't explain. At least not at first."

Without saying anything more, the ExO / ILO pressed several controls completely isolating the IGC from the res of the ship.  Maybe it had only been a strange shadow, but it had been anything else Shar'El would make sure to figure out its intent in the quickest possible delays.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M05-P021: USS ANUBIS: Stark: Day 1 - 2035 ("Shadowhunting")
"Shadowhunting"
[previous "Something Strange"]

[/\]

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.2035

"What do you mean the conduit has not been repaired?!? It's been over two hours!" Jayson's patience had long left the ship, and pretty much everyone knew it.

=/\= Sorry Sir, but that coolant leak on deck 6 was just the tip of the iceberg.  You can check with Lt. Paquette... =/\=

The OPS Officer just closed the comm channel not at all interested in hearing about the CEO and how she had apparently managed to be everyone on the ship all at the same time.

"Everyone is doing their best," the ExO said as she came to stand next to the twitching OPS Officer.

"I know," Stark snapped as he turned to look to face the Commander. Whatever rage had been ready to come out was quickly pushed away. Getting courtmartialed for insubordination had not been something that Jayson or the ANUBIS needed at this time.

"Take a deep breath," Shar'El said, the faint smile she added made him understand that no harm had been done.  After what had happened everyone had been on edge, and the ExO clearly knew this.

"Maybe I should go down to deck 6 and see what is holding up the repairs. At the very least it will give me a chance to walk off some of my frustrations."

[/\]

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Deck 6, Corridor
Stardate: 31199.2040

Going for a walk might not have been the brightest idea the OPS Officer had ever gotten. The ship looked like hell with panels scattered everywhere, cables hanging from the ceiling and the floor covered in debris.

Hours, even days would never be enough to get the ship back in the condition that it needed to be. Not while stuck on the edge of a star cluster that seemed bent on destroying anything that came too close. The ANUBIS would need weeks back in drydock to make sure that every system was brought back to their expected working condition.

Jayson saw something vanish down one of the side corridors. The shadow had moved too fast to be a member of the crew so curious to discover what he had seen the OPS Officer sped up his walk to the junction. There he looked down the corridor and only saw another debrid filled floor with wires hanging from the ceiling.

"Great, Doctor Doyanne is going to declare me unfit for duty. I must truly be stressing out of my mind if I am imagining shadows moving about the ship."

[/\]

Jayson Sousa

Chief of Operations
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M02-P032: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 1 - 2040 ("Something Strange")
=-=
"Something Strange"
[previous post was "Unseen Fears" by the plotting Dawn]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.2040

After having delivered her report on the continued repairs on the BASTET to Captain Iverson, Janeel had returned to the bridge grateful that she would have some time to address her own concerns about the current situation.

Working for Starfleet Intelligence meant that surprises were around each and every corner. As an ILO that idea was even more of a reality to the Lieutenant Commander thanks to her dealing with aspects and knowledge that few others were aware of. In her role as the Mission Specialist for the BASTET, Janeel had in her possession certainly details that no one else had, this as per Admiral Koniki's very specific instructions.

It was clear that the Admiral had a few trust issues, but given his position as the head of NEW ALEXANDRIA and the road that had led him to taking on that command, the man's attitude could for the most par be understood.  This understanding though could not make the Mission Specialist shake the feeling that something had been missing from what she had been told by Admiral Koniki.  Using whatever fluctuating resources she had available to her, Janeel reviewed everything concerning the reason for the BASTET's present at the GAMMA ERADI Cluster.

According to Starfleet records, the USS RAMAN had crashed with all hands lost on MARIJNE VII.  As a matter of public record this information had been easily confirmed.  The twist in this story was that according to the USS CLEOPATRA, another vessel operating from the NEW ALEXANDRIA secret base, a transmission had been received from the RAMAN.  It was only after some very complexe research that it was discovered that the transmission had not originated from a ghost ship but rather from an entirely different dimension.

Over the years several Starfleet vessels had dealt with ships and creatures from other dimensions, Species 8472 being one of the most noteworthy, so it had not been a large stretch of the imagination to accept the possibility of another USS RAMAN in a parallel universe not having crashed.  What had stuck out of the ordinary had been he transmission itself. Signals did not travel from one dimension to the next by themselves, which meant that the signal received by the USS CLEOPATRA had deliberately been sent to this dimension.  The question of course had remained as to why?

The Captains of both the ANUBIS and BASTET had expected some sort of resistance as they approached the GAMMA ERADI Cluster, but Janeel had been certain that neither one of them had expected to run into a deadly minefield of miniature explosives.  Something truly odd was happening and the ILO and Mission Specialist had wanted to get to the bottom of this mystery, hopefully without endangering anyone on either ship.

Janeel's attention was diverted from her reading by a movement in the corner of her eye.  At first she had thought that Captain Iverson had stepped out of her Ready Room but when the ILO noted that no one had been there, she simply dismissed it as some sort of trick played by the fluctuating lights.

A few seconds later another shift in the lights cause the ILO / Mission Specialist to turn her head in search of the cause of what she had believed had been movement.  Again Janeel found nothing to explain what she had seen.  When one of the shadows directly in the middle of the bridge appeared to move in a way beyond any explanation, the Lieutenant Commander decided to contact her counterpart on the ANUBIS. Either Shar'El would confirm that something strange had been happening or that Janeel had officially lost her mind. 

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P031: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 1 - 2035 ("Unseen Fears")
"Unseen Fears"
Previous post: "What Lies in Shadows"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Astrometrics, Deck 4
Stardate: 31199.2035

With the lights and screens turning on and off due to the power fluctuations throughout the ship it had been difficult for Aki to get any real work done.  One moment everything worked, showing the ship, the cluster and even traces of the miniature explosives, than seconds later the entire room would be plunged into darkness.

"I would have better luck if I stood on the outer hull in an EVA suit."

The frustration in Aki's voice had been tangible, the woman having once again found herself in perfect darkness unable to see hand should it be placed in front of her face.

A cold shiver made its way through the Asian Chief Science Officer as the lights began to once again flicker. A strange shadow moving on the edge of her vision caught Aki's attention, but when she turned to investigate what had caused the shadow nothing was discovered.

"Did anyone see that?" Aki asked, not entire sure if she had actually seen what she thought she had seen or if the flickering lights had played a cruel trick on her senses.

"See what?" one of the engineers who had been assigned to help asked, the man having found his way to stand directly behind the Asian women without her knowledge.

Had it been within the realm of physical possibilities, Aki's heart would have exploded out of her chest to hand in her hands before beating several times as the woman tried her very best to regain her wits after having been scared so completely.

"What are you trying to do?" Mitshiba said nearly screaming as she held her chest to confirm that her heart had indeed remained where biology demanded that it be.  "Do that again and you'd better make sure that I die, if not I will make sure that you name is listed as the first casualty for this mission."

"Sorry Sir," the crewman offered sheepishly as he took several long steps backwards to make sure that there had been ample room between the Chief Science Officer and him.

Aki glared at the man for a few seconds before another shadow in the corner of her eye made her rapidly turn her head.

"Did you see that?" Aki asked again.

"I saw nothing," the crewman replied in a trembling voice as if he had feared for his life.  Maybe he had seen some moving shadow, but the man had been far too concerned about upsetting Aki to have been in a position to positively confirm what both might or might not have seen.

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M02-P030: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 1 - 2025 ("What Lies in Shadows")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"What Lies in Shadows"
[previous post (Easier Said Than Done)]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS BASTET, Impulse Engine Controls, Deck 8
Stardate: 31199.2025

"Making a decision between propulsion, tactical or life support is actually easy when you get to pick two out of three," Commander Valentine said to no one in particular, "but right now we can't even get enough power to keep any of them working at full requirement."

Actually the situation had not been as bad as Sarena might have made it sound. Given the pounding that the BASTET had been the target of, the ship and crew had managed exceptionally well. The miniature explosive devices that had been set to protect the GAMMA ERADI Cluster had clearly been designed to destroy anyone trying to get too close.

"The question is why?" Commander Valentine again said to no one in particular allowing her thoughts to take verbal form.

"I don't think there is a single power junction that is not in some way damaged," a member of the engineering staff replied not having understood the origin of the question that had been spoken outloud.

"Continue the repairs on those elements that can be," the First Officer said forcing her attention and focus back on the task at hand. "Cannibalize whatever else we can and extend the power redistribution to beyond non-essential areas. Captain Iverson may not like it but I suspect that she will enjoy us being stuck here without the ability to defend ourselves even more."

After having insured that everyone had taken on the tasks required, the First Officer decided to leave the Impulse Engine Control room and check on Main Engineering.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS BASTET, Corridor, Deck 8
Stardate: 31199.2035

With the ambient lights working only at partial capacity, the corridors of the ship were filled with eerie shadows which reminded Sarena of those old black and white horror films. Although she had only seen a couple of them while growing up on STARBASE 114, they had made a lasting impression.

Each sound the First Officer heard as she made her way down the corridor had required her to explain its origin.  The low tone hiss had likely been a ruptured high pressure conduit. The clicking of metal had certainly been a loose panel swaying against the bulkhead.  Sounds had been easy enough to identify, but it was the shifting shadows that quickly annoyed the woman who had found it impossible to explain them away.

As she boarded the nearest turbolift, Sarena's eyes were fixed on the distant shadows which appeared to have completely stopped moving for her benefit.  After all shadows had never been known to move when closely observed, a fact that only further fueled the First Officer's concerns.

Just as the doors finally closed, Commander Valentine jumped back after having seen what she truthfully believed to be something that had moved very rapidly; a shadow, a rather large shadow without form moving in a way that hinted to something more than a trick played by the lights.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M02-P029: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 1 - 2020 ("Easier Said Than Done")
-=-=-
"Easier Said Than Done"
[Previous post: "Fixing Things Up"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 31199.2020

A CEO might say that fixing something broken on a ship was easy. A CMO could equally say that fixing a broken bone on a patient would be just as simple. As a Counselor though Adriana could not make the same claim as there had been nothing easy about dealing with fear and insecurity.

Of course the worst of it all had been for Adriana to deal with her own fears and insecurities which always seemed to surface at the most inconvenient of times.  To make matters more interesting for the CNS, those fears and insecurities had a nasty habit of presenting themselves in full physical and auditory fashion --  in the form of her long lost sister Amanda.

"We are sitting ducks waiting for whoever put those mines out there to come and see how effective their little devices were," the sister who could only be seen or heard by one person said, almost laughing as she did.  "I doubt that they will be all too thrilled to see two ships each relatively in one piece, but to see their trap having been discovered and disabled is going to push them over the edge."

Amanda's comments had almost been enough to push Adriana over that very same edge but the CNS managed, if only barely, to maintain her composure. Her tightly clenched fists and pressed lips had been the only visible signs of her very personal inner conflict, a conflict that she had desperately wanted to keep to herself.

"Counselor," someone called from a nearby biobed. "Do you have any idea as to when we will be able to return to our stations? I am sure that the Captain could use a few extra hands to finish the repairs."

"Go on," Amanda sighed heavily, "tell them the truth. It doesn't matter.  We'll all be star dust as soon as whoever put those mines there come in to figure out what happened."

"I'll go ask the Doctor," Adriana replied as she rapidly walked away, doing her very best to ignore both her sister and the words that she had spoken, words that luckily the CNS had been the only one to hear. Unfortunately for the CNS the feelings stated by the illusionary sibling had not been as foreign to the woman as she might have wanted them to be.

How ever small it might have been, Adriana had to hold on to whatever glimmer of hope she could, if not for the sake of those she had been tasked to help as their Counselor, than for her own sanity which for obvious reasons had already been well in question.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P028: USS BASTET: Iverson: Day 1 - 2000 ("Fixing Things Up")
---
"Fixing Things Up"
(Previous Post: "Picking Up The Pieces")
---

Setting: SPACE, GAMMA ERADI CLUSTER
Stardate: 31199.2000

Against the serene backdrop of interstellar space, the graceful and gentle swirling colors of the GAMMA ERADI Cluster could easily charm someone into a trance of indescribable peace. Having been a fair distance from the usual trade and travel routes, the enchanting scene had been admired by most without a second thought.

Should anyone had inspected the cluster a little closer they might have noticed two motionless ships right by the outer edge. Appearing as peaceful of the cluster itself, it had not been difficult to imagine that the ships had likely been there performing some scientific research or had simply wanted to grant their crew a closer view of the tranquil sight.

Even for those who knew of the hidden chaos within the peaceful colors of the cluster, none could have imagined the troubles faced by the two crews or the actual cause of the less than enchanting troubles they faced.

---

Setting: USS BASTET, Captain's Ready Room
Stardate: 31199.2015

Captain Iverson sighed as she perused once again the extensive list of repairs currently underway. As bad as the BASTET might have been following their encounter with the invisible field of miniature mines, Selene knew that their escort had suffered far worse.  It had been nearly three hours since they had managed to put en end to the constant assault of the multiplying mines, and the silence between the two ships only hinted as to how much repairs both were in urgent need of.

The sound of the door chime brought the Commanding Officer back from her thoughts. The BASTET and her crew had been sent on a mission and this had not been the time for the Commanding Officer to question herself.

"Enter!"

"Sorry to bother you Captain," the Mission Specialist offered as she stepped into the room, "Thought you would be interested in getting an update on the repairs."

With a certain level of trepidation Captan Iverson reached out for the PADD that had been present to her. Would she see that the repairs had been proceeding according to schedule or would the report indicate more issues that had been previously undetected?

---

Setting: USS BASTET, Impulse Engine Controls, Deck 8
Stardate: 31199.2015

With so many areas needing repairs and simply not enough personnel to cover every need Commander Valentine had decided to join the repair efforts not having been the kind of women who simply sat around when there was work to be done.

"How are those auxiliary power couplings?" Sarena asked while her head was buried deep inside one of the several open work stations.

"It will take a couple of hours to effect all of the repairs," a crewman replied sounding less than thrilled by his own words.

"We don't have that kind of time," the First Officer snarled. "We have been here too long already.  We will have to take secondary systems off-line for the time being and use whatever conduits we can to feed power to the primary.  If we have to we can take days to fix everything, but right now we need to get moving three hours ago."

---

Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay, Deck 5
Stardate: 31199.2015

While the rest of the crew took care of fixing the ship, the Medical and Counselling staff of the USS BASTET had been busy fixing the living components, namely the crew.  Although luck had been on their side and no casualties had occurred many members of the crew had suffered from both physical and psychological injuries.

Ensign Lopez had been quick to respond to the emergency and needs of her fellow shipmates but after nearly three hours the woman had begun to feel the emotional weight of her efforts. Adriana could see the concerns on the faces of the crew members being attended to in Sickbay, a reflection of her own thoughts which she could not permit herself to openly display.

"You have nothing to worry Ensign,"the Counselor said to a crewman visibly upset by the lengthy wait for news about the condition of a fellow shipmate. "Your friend is in good hands."

"Might be nice if you believed it," the image of the long lost sister said knowing that her twin had been just as concerned if not more than the crewman she hd been trying to comfort.

---

Setting: USS BASTET, Astrometrics, Deck 4
Stardate: 31199.2015

As the Chief Science Officer of the USS BASTET, Lieutenant Mitshiba had thought it imperative to get the sensors not only fully operational but also capable of clearly detecting the miniature replicating explosives that had caused both the ANUBIS and BASTET so much trouble.  The Asian woman had also hoped that she might be able to get the sensors to penetrate the veil that hid the inside of the GAMMA ERADI Cluster from the outworld universe.

It was clear that something important was waiting inside and Misaki had wanted to discover what had been so heavily protected before they actually got close to it.  If the outside of the Cluster had been made into a nearly impenetrable fortress it was just plane logic to believe that an even greater barrier would be waiting for them inside the colorful cloud.

"Can someone stabilize the power flow to the sensor array," Lieutenant Mitshiba demanded. "Right now we are lucky if I can keep the ANUBIS visible on our screens."

"We are trying," the reply came from across the room, "but the power if fluctuating all over the ship. We are actually lucky to have as much as we have."

The Chief Science Office sighed. As small as the explosives might have been, they had fulfilled their role to near perfect conclusion.  Anyone else would have counted themselves lucky to still being in one piece while planning a rapid retreat.  The crew of the BASTET though were unfortunately not so easily dissuaded from completed their mission.

---
Jessica Solarik 

Captain Selene Fiona Iverson [Access Character BIO for Selene Iverson]
Commanding Officer
USS BASTET

&

Lieutenant Commander Maya [Access Character BIO for Maya]
Chief Science Officer
USS ANUBIS

"To see the world in a grain of sand,
and a heaven in a wild flower.
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
and eternity in an hour."
- William Blake (British, 1757-1827)
M05-P020: USS ANUBIS: Shar'El: Day 1 - 1720 ("Picking Up The Pieces")
=-=
"Picking Up The Pieces"
[previous post was "Licking Wounds" by the occupied Jayson]
=-=

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1720

Given the situation that they had faced, both the ship and crew had performed remarkably well. This had been even more so now that the threat had been dealt with. As she moved from one station to the next the ExO / ILO could see just how every member of the command staff had jumped in to address whatever need had presented itself.

"We are going to have to take the primary power relays off-line," the redhead engineer stated. There had been more than enough demand for her skills and expertise as she coordinated the repair efforts from the bridge, this despite the longing desire to deal with all of the problems herself.

"That would leave us completely defenceless," Ya'Han objected right away, the announcement having gone directly against her duties as the Chief of Security and Tactical Officer; that of protecting the ship and its crew.

"I am guessing that there are no other options," Shar'El said as she moved towards the exasperated Chief Engineer.

"There are always options," Sonja huffed. "We could ask the engineering staff, meaning those who are actually able to work and not burnt to a crisp or in detached pieces in sickbay, to each grab one of the damage conduits and hold it together while we keep the weapons system active. Taking into account what I see here, I am sure that we won't lose more than 30 to 40 percent of the remaining engineering staff."

An uneasy silence took hold of the bridge as all eyes fell onto the boiling redhead.

"I think you have made your point more than needed Sonja," Shar'El said in a soft, calming voice as she placed her hand on the woman's shoulder.  "Take primary power off-line.  Commander Maya," the ExO / ILO continued turning to look at the Chief Science Officer. "Since you are in communication with the BASTET, please relay an update on our status."

Maya acknowledged with a nod of her head allowing Shar'El to continue with managing the situation that the ANUBIS had worked its way in.

"ANI, please assist Lt. Paquette with effecting all required repairs. Ensign Stark, I am sure that our Chief Engineer could use an extra set of hands," the ExO / ILO said before turning to look at their CO who quickly grinned.

"I'll join the repair team," Captain Morningstar said.

"I suspected you would," Shar'El smiled having figured that the man's starfleet history as an Engineer would not have allowed him to remain idle while the ANUBIS was in such a poor state.

"I will go see if Lillie could use an extra set of hands," Eve offered thinking that her expertise would be far more useful when applied to injured crew members over broken power conduits.

As those having offered a helping hand made their way to the nearest turbolift, Shar'El realized that she had managed to effectively empty the bridge of the majority of the officers present. Hopefully this would mean quiet times instead of a rush to address whatever problem would come to be.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M05-P019: USS ANUBIS: Stark: Day 1 - 1715 ("Licking Wounds")
"Licking Wounds"
[previous "Analysis"]

[/\]

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1715

While the two scientists were busy analysing the defense net that had nearly destroyed them all, Jayson had been busy coordinating the repairs to the ANUBIS.  The ablative armor had saved them from being destroyed but the ship had not gone through the ordeal unscathed.

"I'm noticing a power fluctuation on the starboard phaser array," Ya'Han said. The Sec/Tac working on making sure that he ship was combat ready in case something came out of the star cluster.

"Doing the best that I can. We have blown conduits and relays throughout the ship and the engineering staff is working at reduced capacity due to the high number of injuries.  I understand you wanting to have the weapons at full power, but right now I have to make sure that we don't lose life support on any deck." His frustration had been impossible to miss, something that he quickly regretted when he saw the look on the Captain's face.

Jayson had been ready to apologise when a flashing light on his console pulled his attention back onto what he had been doing.

"We have a coolant leak on deck 6, secondary hull engineering. Forcefield are now in place. Bridge to sickbay, Doctor Doyanne we have a report of injuries in the secondary hull engineering section."

=/\= We are overwhelmed here but I will dispatch a team. =/\=

Jayson just started at his console expecting there to be another report of something having failed inside the ANUBIS.  The BASTET might have weathered the incident with only a few bumps and bruises but that had not been the case for the larger ship which had made it its mission to intercept most of the explosive devices before they could reach their target.

He just remained silent as his eyes scanned the console thinking that at any moment now something would either blow up or some unexpected *thing* would come out of the cluster to finish the job that the miniature explosives had started.

[/\]
Jayson Sousa

Chief of Operations
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M02-P027: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 1 - 1710 ("Analysis")
"Analysis"
Previous post: "Hole In The Net"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1710

With one section of the defensive net that had been set all around the GAMMA ERADI Cluster disabled, Aki, with the help of Lt. Cmdr. Maya onboard the ANUBIS, had been able to obtain a much better understanding of how the entire system worked.

The miniature explosive devices had been designed to be as invisible as they were deadly. Alone, they had been made to be powerful enough to damage or even cripple most ships, but as a swarm the tiny devices were more than capable of destroying the average starship. Luckily for everyone, the ANUBIS had not been your average type of ship.

Each section of miniature explosives were maintained by a single, slightly larger device design to direct a replication beam to where one or more would vanish. This relatively simple design insured that the net would continue to operate at full efficiency even if one or more ships tried to breach the parameter.  With that control device now destroyed, one question remained; what controlled the control device?

"It appears that the control module that was destroyed covered a 30,000 km radius," Aki said while an open comm channel with the ANUBIS had been active.

=/\= Given the size of the cluster, we are looking at several thousand such modules able to replicate millions of miniature explosives. There must be something truly important inside to warrant this level of protection. =/\= The voice of the ANUBIS' CSciO sounded perplexed and concerned.

"The worst part of this is that the only way for us to figure out what this thing might be is to go in as our sensors are next to useless while inside the cluster," Aki added, sharing the feelings that had been heard over the comm channel.

"Well, can't say that life is boring around here," the CNS said with a deep sigh as she wondered what surprises waited for them inside the cluster.

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M02-P026: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 1 - 1701 ("Hole In The Net")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Hole In The Net"
[previous post (Tough Little Thing)]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1701

"ANUBIS has fired a quantum torpedo," Commander Valentine said insuring that all eyes would be on the main viewscreen.

"We are within the blast-wave radius," Mitshiba realized seconds before the torpedo hitting its mark.

"All hands, brace for explosion shockwave," the Captain announced. Hopefully this would be the last time anything would hit the BASTET for quite some time.

A bright flash filled the main viewscreen causing several of the officers to briefly look away, not wanting to miss the final result. Had their immediate trouble truly been finally dealt with?

Complete silence filled the bridge as everyone tried their best to figure out if this had been the solution they had been searching for since they had been caught in this trap.

"I don;t think I have ever heard a more beautiful silence," Lopez hesitantly said fearing that her own words would forever break the peace that they had discovered.

"Sensors are not picking up any new explosive devises. Looks like we were able to locate their source, at least for this region. There are still quite a lot of those nasty little things out there," Janeel said.

"At least they are not trying to turn us into swiss cheese anymore, and for that I am grateful," the Captain said.  "Commander, I want a complete damage report in 15 minutes. This was but the first hurdle on our mission and we still have not made it *inside* the GAMMA ERADI Cluster."

"Given the complexity of the net we have just made a hole in, I am concerned as to what else we will encounter as well as the reason why such a sophisticated defence system was placed here," Valentine said with a sigh.

"You don't join SFI if you are not ready to deal with several unexpected surprises," Captain Iverson added with a smile, the woman having been right smack in the middle of her element in these types of situations.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M05-P018: USS ANUBIS: Ya'Han: Day 01 - 1700 ("Tough Little Thing")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Tough Little Thing"
[previous post was "Anticipation"]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1700

Her hair had changed back to the bright red that she had been showing before indicating the Sec/Tac's readiness to jump into action pending the outcome of what was happening.  Ya'Han had been quick to report that the BASTET had fired a torpedo at whatever the ANUBIS had hit. The sound that it had made when it collided against the ablative armor and the fact that it had not exploded had clearly identified the object as being something different.

All eyes were glued on the main viewscreen and the rapidly moving dot showing the location of the BASTET's photon torpedo.

"Impact," Ya'Han announced as the dot vanished from the main viewscreen. The miniature explosives that had reappeared around the target showed no change other than one; no new ones had come to take the places of those the ANUBIS had plowed through.

"Report!" Commander Shar'El snapped, hoping that they had found the weakness they had been searching for since this nightmare began.

"Sensors are not picking up any new explosive devices, looks like..." then the red haired Sec/Tac's voice drifted into a sigh of saddened disappointment.  "Two new miniature explosives have appeared."

"I am actually picking up activity on an extremely small scale at the target location," Maya reported.  "Obviously the target was not an explosive device but it does seem capable of self-repairing."

"Whoever came up with this system was a genius," Shar'El noted.  "My guess is that whatever that thing is, it is meant as a relay for whatever is actually creating the explosive devices. To insure that the mine field would not be vulnerable to a single piece failing, it was likely made to be able to repair itself when in need."

"The BASTET might not have been able to destroy it, but they were able to damage it with a torpedo," Ya'Han pointed out, hoping that the Captain and First Officer would see what she saw.

"We have to damage it beyond it's ability to repair," Captain Morningstar said as he looked at the redhead Nylaan woman.

"Arming aft quantum torpedo. Target is locked in," the Sec/Tac stated, her finger hovering over the firing controls.

"FIRE!"

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Hanali Han

Chief of Security / Chief Tactical Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M02-P025: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 1 - 1700 ("Anticipation")
"Anticipation"
Previous post: "Something Different"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1700

The bridge became perfectly silent following the Captain's order to launch the torpedo at the recently identify target. The sensor readings had shown it to be only slightly larger than the rest of the explosive devices. That plus the fact that it had not exploded upon impact and had not corrected its change of position had made it to be their best chance. As much of a long shot as it might have been.

The sensors on board the BASTET followed the progress of the torpedo with the highest possible accuracy. Likewise, the crew followed the rapidly moving dot on the screen with the highest possible level of interest.  If the explosion did succeed in destroying whatever the target had been, there was no way to know what would happen next. On the other hand if the detonation of a photon torpedo at point blank range proved ineffective, there had been very little else that could be done to save both the ANUBIS an themselves.

Aki wanted to start working on a 'plan-B' just in case the current plan failed, but the Asian woman could not break away from the display on the main view screen. The answer would be known in only a few seconds, but those seconds proved to take forever to pass by.

The Lieutenant had been holding her breath for only seconds since the launch of the torpedo and yet she felt as if she would pass out at any moment.  The sound of her heart beating drowned everything else, each beat echoing in her ears as if it had been some sort of powerful nuclear explosion.

"Time to target; two seconds."

The voice of the First Officer had sounded muffled through the deafening noise of Aki's heart. Two seconds might as well have been two hours or even two years. The wait had been unbearable but the Asian woman had no other choice but to wait, and hope.

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M02-P024: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 1 - 1655 ("Something Different")
=-=
"Something Different"
[previous post was "The USS PLOW" by the Simpsons fan Jayson]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1655

Everyone's attention had been on the situation at hand. The USS ANUBIS had performed a remarkable job at intercepting the greater majority of the miniature explosives before they could reach the BASTET, but time was running out.

Making a hasty retreat had not been an option as the density of the explosives as shown on the main view screen would have been more than sufficient to turn both ships into dust.  The best course of action had been for the BASTET to remain motionless and help find a way to stop the maddening reproduction of the unseen mines.

"We would have to be within 20 meters of the ANUBIS to even have a chance to get out of this alive if we tailed them out of here," Lt. Mitshiba announced. "It is clear that they are attracted to moving targets as well as stationary ones."

"So we stay here and we blow up, and if we try to leave we also blow up," Ens. Lopez, the Ship's Counselor said in a rather gloomy tone.  "The Kobayashi Maru all over again."

"We simply need to locate where these explosives are being replicated from," Janeel said mater of factly.

"Easier said than done," Cmdr Valentine huffed, the task not having been anywhere as simple as the ILO / Mission Specialist had made it to be.

"What is that?" Captain Iverson exclaimed having noticed something on the main view screen. "Looks like one of the mines didn't explode when it was hit by the ANUBIS."

"Sensors are showing whatever that is to be slightly larger," Misaki reported. "Why would that one be different from the others?"

"Because that one is not an explosive," Janeel theorized. "Maybe it is one of the replicating units or some sort of relay allowing whatever is making these mines to be brought to this section of the cluster."

"Either way I want that thing out of my sky," Captain Iverson commanded having finally been given a possible solution to their dilemma.

"Arming photon torpedo and setting it to detonate at the exact coordinates of that anomaly," Cmdr Valentine said as her fingers danced with great purpose on her console. "Ready!"

"FIRE!" Selene ordered without delay hoping that this would be the one break they had been so desperate to find.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M05-P017: USS ANUBIS: Stark: Day 1 - 1655 ("The USS PLOW")
"The USS PLOW"
[previous "Small Things Mean Big Problems"]

[/\]

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1655

The ANUBIS had fallen into a quick flight pattern around the BASTET, intercepting the majority of the miniature explosives before they could reach the other ship. As great as this plan had worked, the ablative armor had been taking a royal pounding, one that it would not be able to continue receiving for much longer.

Jayson did his best to help with the flight pattern, making small adjustments to try and catch as many of the dots on the screen as possible. The job had been tedious and frustrating, like using a plow to clear a path filled with water. Looking right behind the ANUBIS made it seem as if the plan was very successful, but looking a little further showed how futile this had all been.

The only advantage they had found was that the newly created explosive remained in place for several seconds before starting to move towards their target giving the ANUBIS enough time to circle around and plow through them all over again.

Every trick had been used to given them more time. Ya'Han's idea of beaming crates into space had helped, giving the explosives something else to move towards. The problem was that the crates were being destroyed faster than they could be beamed out.

Jayson did not have to look at the rest of the bridge crew to know that everyone had been on edge. The sounds of the explosions against the armor would have been enough to make anyone edgy, but to know that it had been only a matter of time before the main hull would be exposed only made things worse.

The Chief of Operations tried his best to not think of what might be. He had come too far to let a situation, how ever grim, make him lose confidence in the crew as well as his own ability to make it through. With his mind on the task at hand Jayson made a small course adjustment in the hopes that they would be able to take a little less damage while still effectively protect the BASTET.

That was when everyone heard it.

"What was that?" The Chief of Security asked.

"Sounds like something hit the ablative armor and *didn't* explode," Shar'El said.

"Don't know what it is but sensors are tracking something that bounced off our armor," Jayson reported not sure if this had been good or bad news.

[/\]
Jayson Sousa

Chief of Operations
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M02-P023: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 1 - 1655 ("Small Things Mean Big Problems")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Small Things Mean Big Problems"
[previous post (When Nothing Works)]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1655

"I think I liked those things more when we could not see them," Commander Valentine sighed as she looked at the main view screen filled with small little dots, each representing a miniature explosive device.

"At least we can see them now," Mitshiba said, "but despite the modifications made to our sensors, we are still no closer to getting any actual readings on what those things are. The best we have is what we have observed."

"That they are a major pain," Lt. Commander Janeel growled.

"That they seem capable of minor motion, likely from some sort of magnetic attraction, that they are unaffected by any sort of energy fields and that they replicate at an alarming rate almost immediately after their detonation," the Chief Science Officer detailed.

The BASTET was rocked by yet another explosion which caused everyone to reach for the closest anchored surface to hold on to.

"We have to find a way to solve this problem," Captain Iverson said. "The ANUBIS won't be able to keep this up."

"Agreed," the ILO / Mission Specialist said. "We need to analyse the situation from another angle. This was an elaborate trap meant to insure the destruction of any ship coming close to the cluster."

"There is no way that anyone could have mined the entire parameter of the GAMMA ERADI Cluster," Ensign Lopez said, joining in on the discussion. "It would have taken thousands of ships and countless years."

"Also it would have made sense for those devices to be triggered before we found ourselves in the middle of them," Valentine added. "Something triggered the trap."

"And that is what we should be focussing our efforts on," Captain Iverson concluded. "Whatever the trigger is, we have to find it and hope that the process can be undone.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M05-P016: USS ANUBIS: Ya'Han: Day 01 - 1650 ("When Nothing Works")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"When Nothing Works"
[previous post was "Rushing Into Hell"]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1650

Now that the explosive devices had been visible, stopping them from hitting the ship should have been easy. At least that had been what the red haired Sec/Tac had thought.

Shields had proven to be useless against these things and it had not been an unexpected surprise when phasers had proved equally ineffective. Any energy-based method used against the explosive devices had failed leaving Ya'Han with nothing other to do than to scratch her head. When she had not been holding on to her console that is.

Even is Lt. Cmdr. Maya or anyone else on the ANUBIS or BASTET could find the source of these miniature bombs, Ya'Han would not be able to deal the large number still floating out there all around them.

"Energy weapons don't work. Shields don't work. What's left?" the Nylaan woman thought out loud, her hair having gradually faded back to the more customary black. The frustration of her failure had stripped her of the fire and readiness for a fight, which left her feeling powerless in so many ways, a feeling that Ya'Han did not enjoy at all.

A glance to one of the side monitors displaying the list of injuries had not help any. The Sec/Tac felt a certain responsibility towards them and their pain. Had she found a way to stop these explosives from hitting the ship, many if not most of these injuries would have likely not happened.

Then the black haired Sec/Tac had an idea, not one that would resolve the problem but one that would hopefully give them a little more time with no further injuries being suffered by the crew.

"Captain," Ya'Han started, "what if we used the transporters to beam out into space empty crates or anything else we could spare. At the very least those explosive devices would it them instead of us. I know it's a very short term solution but for right now that is the best that I can come up with."

"Do it!" the Captain replied, not happy that a solution had not been found but apparently more than willing to do anything that would help, even if only a little.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Hanali Han

Chief of Security / Chief Tactical Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M05-P015: USS ANUBIS: Shar'El: Day 1 - 1640 ("Rushing Into Hell")
=-=
"Rushing Into Hell"
[previous post was "Unseen and Unknown" by the creative Dawn]
=-=

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1640

The command staff of the USS ANUBIS held on to whatever they could as the ship plowed through the undetectable field of unseen explosives.

"The ablative armor is holding but I'm not putting any bets on how long that will last," the Chief Engineer said as she monitored the state of the defensive shield that stood between them and whatever had been out there. "At this rate the armor will fail in under two minutes."

"We might be able to add a few minutes to that by using a polarized energy field from our outer hull," the Chief Science Officer offered.  "It will not protect the hull but it may give the ablative armor a little more strength."

"Do whatever is needed," Shar'El bellowed as she held on to the nearest console, the latest set of explosions having rocked the entirety of the ANUBIS with unparalleled force.  "Any news from the BASTET?"

"They are still reporting explosions against their hull but nothing like what we are experiencing," the currently redhaired Sec/Tac officer reported.  "The best we can guess is that we are at the very least reducing their being a target in some way."

"Getting something new from the BASTET," Maya said from the science station where she had been sitting and holding on to.  "Lieutenant Mitshiba has a theory; that the explosive devices are too small to be normally detected by our tactical sensors."

"Miniature explosives?" Sonja gasped. "How truly diabolic, evil and underhanded. Why haven't I thought of that before?"

"Modifying our tactical sensors to detect smaller objects," Ya'Han said not waiting to be told to do so having figured that time had been against them since they had rushed into this hell of a situation. "Got something!"

"Tactical display on main view screen," the Captain ordered wanting to see just how bad their situation had been.

Within seconds the large screen at the front o the bridge showed the outlines of both the ANUBIS and BASTET as well as countless little specs scattered beyond the limits of the screen.

"Whoever put these things there was thorough," Eve noted with an unhappy sigh, the small dots identifying the likely explosives having been for more numerous than anyone could have imagined.

"What I find odd is that the density of those things doesn't seem to go down despite our plowing through them," the OPS officer pointed out, still holding on to his console with all available strength.

=/\= Doctor Doyanne to Bridge, not sure what you people are doing up there but we are getting a lot of casualty reports. Nothing fatal as of yet, but there are lots of broken bones and head trauma. We can't keep this up much longer down here. =/\= the CMO reported over the comm channel wanting to make sure that everyone knew of her dire situation.

"Are they self replicating?" the Captain asked wondering if the same general technology that had been used during the Dominion War had been used here.

"I really don't see how they would have been able to miniaturize a replicating unit to that level," Maya replied. "It is far more likely that there is some other sort of replication or creation device at work.

"Tactical, now that we can actually *see* these things, can we find a way to keep them off our armor?" Shar'El asked hoping that Ya'Han would be able to find something to help.  "Everyone else, look for whatever is out there making more of these miniature explosives."

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P022: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: Day 1 - 1635 ("Unseen and Unknown")
"Unseen and Unknown"
Previous post: "An Explosive Arrival"

///^\\\
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1635

In between the rocking and shaking caused by the explosions, Aki had been trying to figure out what exactly had been happening to them.  Shields had been raised and the BASTET had been brought to a complete stop but the explosions continued.

"Are we dealing with some sort of cloaked mines as the ANUBIS suggested?" the CO asked. At least if they knew what they were dealing with there would be a chance for them to find a way out of the situation.

"Sensors are still not showing anything despite our recalibrations," Aki said as another blast rocked the ship. "All we know for sure is that whatever they are, they are passing through our shields as if they weren't even there. Maybe the mines are equipped with some sort of phasing technology or are just impervious to energy fields."

"Either way we are getting hammered here," the First Officer said as she made her way to the science station while holding on to whatever had been within arm's reach.

"The problem, well at least one of them, is that we can't aim our sensors to get a more specific readings. Might as well be searching for a miniature black needle in space," Mitshiba said while desperately searching for a way to make whatever had been exploding against their hull visible or at least detectable.

"If whatever is pounding us is impervious to energy fields, we need to find something else to use to see what we are dealing with," the First Officer said thinking out loud.

"We went through the entire visual light spectrum as well as the magnetic band and still nothing," Aki confirmed. "Like I said it would be easier for us to look for a miniature needle..."

The unexpected pause by the Asian Chief Science Officer made the Captain turn in hopes that something might have been found.

"It's a stupid idea," Aki said shaking her head.

"Let's us be the judge of that," Commander Valentine said in return. "At this point we don''t have a lot to lose in trying stupid ideas."

"Our sensors were never meant to scan for small items," the CSciO explained. "And I mean by that *really* small items, like a needle.  We could be dealing with hyper miniature tech which could explain why we have yet to detect anything."

"Alter the sensors accordingly, let's see if your idea is as in fact a brilliant one," the Captain ordered, a glimmer of hope in her voice.

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant JG Misaki Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M05-P014: USS ANUBIS: Morningstar: Day 1 - 1630 ("An Explosive Arrival")
##########
"An Explosive Arrival"
Previous post "Fine Calculations"
##########

"The most important thing to me is to make as much of an impression as possible when I walk into a room."
- Kolgary Zar, Xepolite War Chief accused of the genocide of two entire and separate cultures

=====
Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1630

An eerie silence ruled over the bridge of the USS ANUBIS as the countdown to their arrival to the GAMMA ERADI Cluster neared its end.  The final stretch of their journey had not been any more dangerous than before, but the unknown of what they would find had kept everyone on edge. Some, like the Chief Medical Officer Doctor Doyanne, hoped for nothing that would see the crew of either ship put in danger. Others, such as the Chief Tactical and Security Officer, expected something to be waiting for them, justifying all of the preparations that they had gone through prior to now.

"Brace yourselves," the Operations Officer announced as he shot a quick glance to the Avatar who had remained by his side since her fortunate arrival. "Disengaging warp speed in 5... 4... 3... 2... 1..."

The ship came to a sudden yet smooth near stop, still under the protection of its cloaking ablative armour. The momentum of the SCARAB-Class Cruiser gently continued to carry the ship forward towards the GAMMA ERADI Cluster while the BASTET stood visible for all to see a few hundred kilometers off to the ANUBIS' starboard.

"Tactical," the Native American began as he moved to sit right at the edge of his chair. "Initiate a full sensor sweep of the area."

"Scanning," the normally raven haired Chief of Security acknowledged, sporting a rather bright crimson shade in her hair.  "Sensors are showing no other ships in the sector, although I can't get any solid readings more than a few thousand kilometers inside the cluster."

"If there is someone waiting for us in there," the Chief Science Officer stated, "they will have to come up with a way to pierce the sensor interference of the GAMMA ERADI Cluster or be as blind as we are."

"Where there's a will, there's a way," Eve sighed, her experience having shown more often than not that alternatives could always be found by those desperate enough to reach a specific goal.

Silence returned to the bridge as the command staff watched with heightened interest the USS BASTET making its way closer to the star cluster under quarter impulse power. From a distance, the ANUBIS matched the other ship's heading and speed, ready to jump in at a moment's notice should something appear on their sensors.

"At this rate we will be able to get back to NEW ALEXANDRIA for breakfast," Sonja chuckled briefly figuring that all of the hoopla had been for nothing. 

"I would not count on it. Sensors have just picked up an explosion," Ya'Han announced in complete surprise as she frantically scanned her instruments to figure out the cause. "Another?  There is no ship nor any sort of energy discharge but the explosions are happening right against the hull of the BASTET."

"Hail them!" the Native American demanded hoping that they would be able to shed some light on this latest mystery.

[/\] I know what you are going to ask and the answer is that we have no idea, [/\] Captain Iverson replied, the woman appearing on the main view screen as being clearly upset while holding onto her chair.

[/\] Sensors are picking up *nothing*. Whatever is hitting us has to either be cloaked or hidden in some other way, [/\] the BASTET's ILO added as she appeared on the screen obviously having meant the statement to be directed to her counterpart onboard the ANUBIS.

[/\] We have come to a complete stop but have no way to know if it will help, [/\] Commander Valentine added, clearly sharing the frustration being shown by everyone else on board the USS BASTET.

"Re-modulate sensors to include a wider range of frequencies as well as micro-sub-space disruptions," the ANUBIS' Executive Officer ordered of Maya, Shar'El needing to find a solution to this problem with the greatest possible urgency.

"Sensors registering a third explosion but still no signs as to their cause," Ya'Han announced with clear disdain, unable to do anything to help at this point in time.

"Near the end of the Dominion War, Deep Space 9 used cloaked replicating mines to block the access to the wormhole," the Chief Engineering Officer said. "What if a similar tech is being used here. Would explain why we can't see anything until it's too late."

"Options?" Erik demanded, hoping that a solution could be found before the BASTET would be transformed in a lifeless wreckage.

"If these are cloaked mines, it will take time to figure out how to spot them," the Chief Science Officer pointed out in an apologetic manner.  "For all we know the cause of these explosions could be from another dimension, which would make it impossible for us to detect or prevent."

"There is another option," Ens. Stark proposed. "If we are dealing with cloaked mines, we could use the ANUBIS to plow through the area. Hopefully the ablative amour would give us enough of an edge against them and take some of the heat from the BASTET."

"I don't like that plan," Shar'El admitted, "but I don't see us having any other option at this time."

"Fine," the Native American sighed, surrendering himself to the unavoidable order he would have to give. "Helm, alter course and speed to bring us straight across the BASTET's path. Best guess as to where these mine would be located.  Commander Maya, do everything you can to give us a way to find whatever is causing these explosions." Erik paused for a moment before opening a channel to the ship's Sickbay. "Captain Morningstar to Doctor Doyanne, have your staff on standby for treating burns as well as explosive decompression. Things are going to get nasty quickly."

=/\= Understood Captain, =/\= the CMO replied without delay, her staff as well as herself having always been ready to answer any and all emergency needs.

"Ladies and gentlemen, please fasten your seatbelts," Sonja began before taking in a long deep breath. "Looks like we're crashing this party in a big way. It's going to be a bumpy ride," the CEO concluded with using a clearly Jamaica accent for her last words.

--==(/\)==--
Francois Charette

Commanding Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC 18501

AND

Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA
M05-P013: USS ANUBIS: Stark: Day 1 - 1620 ("Fine Calculations")
"Fine Calculations"
[previous "Sharpening Claws"]

[/\]

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1620

His lack of sleep had still been there but it would have to wait. At least things had gotten busy enough to keep Jayson from nodding off and giving Sonja the satisfaction of winning her bet.

"The data link has been severed." The OPS officer said, the people on the bridge looking at the ship they had been following moving away from them as they increased speed.

"Red alert!"

Everyone had been expecting those two simple words from their Captain and it was no surprise when they were finally heard. Ya'Han seemed actually thrilled, the now red haired Chief of Security had truly been an odd bird in so many different ways.

"We are two minutes out. Dropping out of warp within 100,000 kilometers from the GAMMA ERADI Cluster."

"That's too far." Shar'El said in a low growl.

"Get us in within 50,000 kilometers. The closer we are the more effective we will be should something be there waiting for us." The CO said.

Jayson knew better than to argue with the Captain. The target of 50,000 kilometers had not been an impossible one but given the size of the ship and the speed at which it was travelling, the arrival zone had been tightly set.

As the OPS Officer was doing the calculations required to meet the Captain's order, he felt a presence standing next to him. A quick look over his shoulder fell onto the ship's avatar ANI.

"Be sure to take into account the increased stress on the inertial dampeners. If not it might prove to be a rough landing for the crew."

Jayson had been ready to tell ANI that he had everything under control when he realised that he had actually forgotten to do as the avatar had suggested.  As much as he had been able to not fall asleep, he had to admit to himself that he had almost made a grave error. Luckily the purple haired android had come to the rescue.

Once everything had been entered and set, Jayson glanced over his shoulder at the tactical station and the officer there. Although currently a redhead, he knew her to be able to match the avatar's hair color and maybe in time he would be able to ask her the reason as to why she kept this ability so secret.

[/\]
Jayson Sousa

Chief of Operations
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M05-P012: USS ANUBIS: Ya'Han: Day 01 - 1555 ("Sharpening Claws")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Sharpening Claws"
[previous post was "Hidden Dangers"]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1555

The black haired Sec/Tac officer listened with interest as the two ILOs spoke about the final plan that had been agreed upon.  The BASTET would decloak and arrive at the GAMMA ERADI Cluster with the ANUBIS secretly bringing up the rear.

"We will need to be at full combat readiness," Shar'El said as she glanced over to the Nylaan woman who smile as her hair began to turn bright red.

Since the incident on the MASKERADE DREAMS and the running into her older sister Ya'Jun, Ya'Han had felt far more at ease with her changing hair color to reflect her mood and focus.  In this case, her combat training and knowledge had been brought to the forefront in preparation for what might happen once they would arrive at the GAMMA ERADI Cluster.

"We will be ready," Ya'Han confirmed with pride and certainty, having placed her own reputation on the line. With 30 or so minutes there had not been any worries in the mind of the Nylaan woman which only strengthened her position. With the time they had at their disposal there would not be any problems in insuring that everything was perfect to face whatever might be there waiting for the BASTET.

"I know," the ILO nodded as she smiled before turning to look at the OPS Officer. "Ensign Stark, we will need to match the BASTET's speed and heading for as long as possible."

"We will also need to avoid being directly in their wake," Ya'Han added. "If we are going to enter any sort of combat zone, the last thing we want is to have the BASTET directly in our line of fire should something be directly ahead of them."

"No problem," Jayson said, his fingers already working hard on his console. "We can effect a last moment change of heading which will place us on the BASTET's flank and at a far enough distance to allow us a good view of the entire area."

"That would be perfect," Shar'El added.  "Our primary objective is to keep an eye on the BASTET and make our presence known if and when someone decides to crash our little party."

"If there is someone in or near the GAMMA ERADI Cluster waiting for a ship, we will be giving them a lot more than a party," the red haired Sec/Tac announced looking like a feline ready to pounce or anything that would dare to cross her path.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Hanali Han

Chief of Security / Chief Tactical Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M02-P021: USS BASTET: Janeel: Day 1 - 1545 ("Hidden Dangers")
=-=
"Hidden Dangers"
[previous post was "Charming" by the imaginative Marissa]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1545

In less than an hour the BASTET and ANUBIS would reach their destination, one that seemed to be nothing more than a mystery hidden inside an intrigue wrapped in a riddle.

A message from what appeared to be the USS RAMAN had been received from what had been concluded to be another dimension. The fact that history clearly showed the ship and crew having been lost only added to this enigma.

Adding even more suspense to the situation had been the possibility of something or someone waiting for them near or in the GAMMA ERADI Cluster. Although there had been no known reason for expecting this, both Lt. Cmdr Janeel and Shar'El had agreed that the possibility had been all too real.

"Captain," the ILO / Mission Specialist began as she approached the woman ruling over the bridge. "After coordinating with my counterpart, we believe it best for the BASTET to decloak upon our arrival at our destination. The ANUBIS will remain hidden behind its cloaking armor and insure our safety."

"Safety from what?" Commander Valentine asked, not at all seeing what could have been out there waiting for a cloaked ship to appear at a secret location to take part in a covert mission to another dimension.

"From the fact that there are never any certainties," Captain Iverson replied, a faint smile having flashed over her lips fast enough not to have been noticed by her crew.  "Inform the ANUBIS that the plan is sound. Commander, let's try to keep our cloaking device an unknown advantage. I want us to increase speed and send out a polarized energy burst ahead of us before we actually decloak. This should give the illusion that we were in a sort of quantum slipstream."

"It will also serve to make the presence of the ANUBIS less expected should someone actually be there waiting for us," Janeel said nodding with agreement.  There is no known technology that permits a ship to be both cloaked and travelling through slipstream."

Both the First Officer and ILO / Mission Specialist returned to their posts in preparation for their arrival, Janeel taking a slight detour to pass in front of Ensign Lopez who had still been looking over the banister surrounding the inner bridge.

"You might want to take a seat Counselor," Janeel quietly said in a friendly tone. "Just in case."

"Just in case?" Ensign Lopez repeated with some worry.

"Just in case one of the Captain's uncertainties is waiting for us," the ILO / Mission Specialist replied looking as if she had been finding the entire thing rather amusing.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Janeel [Access Character BIO for Janeel]
Intel Liaison Officer / Mission Specialist
USS BASTET

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El [Access Character BIO for Shar'El]
Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M02-P020: USS BASTET: Lopez: Day 1 - 1530 ("Charming")
-=-=-
"Charming"
[Previous post: "The Unknown"]
-=-=-

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1530

As the CNS Adriana had not been expected to remain on the bridge, but after the discussion she had wanted to see the unknown first hand. So she sat at one of the empty forward stations out of the way hoping and waiting that the Captain, First Officer or even the ILO would ask to see the GAMMA ERADI Cluster before they were actually near it.

As an Ensign and a non-bridge officer she had no say in the matter so Adriana waited silently in a test of her patience and resolve.

"It's nice being on the bridge," Amanda said, the image of her sister having made herself comfortable leaning over the banister separating the outer and inner bridge.  "Bet the view is great from the big chair."

Adriana feared for a moment that her sister might actually go and bother the Captain who had been sitting in her chair, but then the CNS remembered that her sister had been nothing more than an illusion, a mirage, a mental projection of someone that she had not actually seen in 17 years.

"Don't worry sis, you know I would not cause you any trouble," the image of the twin sister said. "Still you have to admit that it would be beyond words to sit in that chair, even if only for a few seconds."

As much as Adriana might not have wanted to admit it out loud, she had to agree with her sister. The view and feeling of sitting in he big chair would certainly go beyond anything that the CNS could imagine.

"Bring the GAMMA ERADI Cluster on main view screen," the Captain ordered. "Full magnification."

Adriana nearly jumped out of her seat to join her sister at the banister, sure that if she had done as she had wanted to, namely jumping over and landing onto the inner bridge, the CO would have had no other choice but to send the over anxious woman away.

The colors of the star cluster had not been as bright as she had expected but the image on the view screen hd still proven to be completely mesmerizing.

"You have to admit," Amanda said nudging closer to her sister. "That is one beautifully charming view."

"Beautiful and charming, yes," Adriana agreed out loud realizing only after the fact that she had called upon herself the eyes and grins of the entire command staff.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Ship's Counselor
USS BASTET
M02-P019: USS BASTET: Valentine: Day 1 - 1430 ("The Unknown")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"The Unknown"
[previous post (Different Similarities)]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: USS BASTET, Observation Lounge
Stardate: 31199.1430

The theory about the RAMAN offered by the ANUBIS had been received, studied and debated by the command staff. After nearly an hour no one appeared overly thrilled by what the theory suggested.

"If what the ANUBIS said proves to be true," Lieutenant Mitshiba began, scratching the back of her neck. "We would be looking for a ship that we know absolutely nothing about, save maybe its name.  Dealing with other dimensions means that there are no certainties, the ship could be identical with the same crew, aside from the fact that they would be alive. On the other hand, the ship we are sent to look for could be a battleship belonging to a faction at war with the Federation."

"Certainties have never been part of life in Starfleet," Commander Valentine said. As much as she agreed with the CSciO, there had been no way to know what they would encounter in this other dimension.

"In the world of Intel there are never any certainties," Captain Iverson added.

"The best we can do is to look at this mission from a different angel," Lieutenant Commander Janeel followed with. "We are being sent to identify the source of the transmission that was picked up by the CLEOPATRA. A transmission that we know came from another dimension from a source identified as the RAMAN. Maybe the ship will be of a Federation design, maybe it will be completely unknown to us. The crew might be humanoid of from a race that we have never even imagined.  Whatever is the source of the transmission, our mission is to find it."

"It is part of what makes life in Starfleet both interesting and scary," Ensign Lopez said. "Dealing with the unknown, and we will be one step closer to that unknown is about two hours.

"The Counselor is right," Captain Iverson added. "We only have two hours to get ready. Once the GAMMA ERADI Cluster is deemed safe for us to enter by the ANUBIS, we will proceed to the dimensional coordinates provided by Lieutenant Commander Janeel. Debating about what we do not know is, at this point, useless. We have a mission so lets focus on and I think it would be best if everyone did just that.  Dismissed."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M05-P011: USS ANUBIS: Morningstar: Day 1 - 1330 ("Different Similarities")
##########
"Different Similarities"
Previous post "The USS RAMAN"
##########

"In order to more fully understand this reality, we must take into account other dimensions of a broader reality."
- John Archibald Wheeler

=====
Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1330

"What is going on?" The Native American quietly inquired having noticed a rather odd expression on the faces of his First Officer and Chief Science Officer.

"The Science Officer of the BASTET came across an interesting piece of information concerning the USS RAMAN," Shar'El explained as she called up the details of the last moments of the ship in question.

"It appears that the ship and it's crew were lost while orbiting MARIJNE VII," Lt. Cmdr. Maya reported. "According to the sensor logs of the USS ENTERPRISE, NCC 1701-D, the RAMAN crashed on the planet's surface."

"Great," the redheaded Chief Engineer huffed. "Koniki is sending us after ghosts. The old man has truly gone 'cuckoo matchoo'."

"According to Lt. Cmdr. Janeel," Shar'El began as she called up more information on a nearby screen. "The transmission intercepted by the CLEOPATRA came from another dimension. That is why the Admiral is sending the upgraded BASTET to look for it, but what if the RAMAN they are looking for is not ours?"

"Of course," Maya exclaimed.  "If the dimensional y-axis is identical or close to our own it would be very likely that another USS RAMAN was the source of the transmission picked up by the CLEOPATRA." The Chief Science Officer continued sounding as if she has solved the greatest mystery known to mankind. "Very much like the mirror universe, home to the Terran Empire, there could be another dimension in which several Federation vessels are present even though their individual history are different from what we know."

"So the RAMAN, but not the RAMAN," Sonja noted pensively. "That might explain why Koniki mentioned their technology. Same ship plus a different dimension could add up to something totally unexpected."

"Or that is what the Admiral is counting on," Ya'Han added. "He is hoping that the BASTET will bring back something completely new to us."

"Errh, sneaky, underhanded, piece of targ dropping Koniki is, " the redhead said 'a la Yoda'. "Not sure if like is slippery ways or not. Too bad I can't skip to the end of the last chapter to find out."

"Commander Shar'El, please make sure that the data and our theories are forwarded to the BASTET," the Native American ordered. "Hopefully this will help them in some ways. We only have three hours before we reach the GAMMA ERADI Cluster and whatever might be there waiting for us."

--==(/\)==--
Francois Charette

Commanding Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC 18501

AND

Lt. Commander