USS ANUBIS - Mission 17
USS BASTET - Mission 13
A New Universe Of Trouble
POST INDEX
Post # Character Title
B001 Iverson Here We Go, Part 1
The BASTET heads out on its new mission
A001 Maya Here We Go, Part 2
Sofia and Nic speak to Maya to get her help
A002 Stark Thinking of Her
Jayson deals with his personal situation
A003 Lopez Another Day In Paradise
Adriana talks to Ya'Han and is brought up to date
A004 Ya'Han Thinking of Him
Ya'Han searches for Xana and runs into Stella
B002 Mitshiba Predictable Uncertainties
Aki explains to Sarena a problem they will face
B003 Enel A Quantum
Erik runs into Zub
A005 Bonviva Skulking, Lying, and Dying
Ya'Han find and talks to Xana
A006 Morningstar Patience, Patience, Mon...
Erik goes to speak to Selene
B004 Gemma Intel Report
Gemma run into Zub
A007 Shar'El Hidden Truth
Shar'El confronts Gemma
B005 Enel Double Trouble
Zub tries to mediate the ILO discussion
A008 Maya The Scientific Approach
Maya and Aki find a possible solution
B006 Iverson The Plan, Part 1
The staff comes up with a plan to reach ORION
B007 Gemma The Plan, Part 2
Shar'El and Gemma talk
A009 Stark The Plan, Part 3
Jayson is offered the OPS position temporarely
B008 Andersson A Lovely Chat
Sofia and Nic discuss Jayson
B009 Mitshiba New friends
Aki returns to the bridge
A010 Lopez Regrets
While alone, Adrina thinks of their situation
B010 Enel Dogged
Something is discovered following the BASTET
A011 Bonviva Living or Alive
The ladies debate on their next course of action
B011 A'Janni Cat and Mouse
The crew tries to figure out what is following them
A012 Shar'El Observations
The BASTET confronts the ship following them
B012 Dima The Only Constant
Nic has a discussion with Erik
B013 Iverson Broken Mirror
The crew prepares for their new guest
B014 Enel Wary Welcome
Zub and Sarena greet their newest guest
A013 Bruxa Helping Hand
Satella and Sofia begin the medial exam
A014 Lopez Emotional Overflow
While trying to escape, Adriana loses control
B015 Andersson Assessment
Sofia confronts Shar'El and Gemma
B016 Mitshiba Confirming The Mystery
Maya and Aki conclude their scans of the craft
A015 Ya'Han Let's Move
During their escape, Sonja talks to Ya'Han
B017 Gemma Intel War
Friction mounts between Shar'El and Gemma
B018 Enel Testing The Wind
Zub and Gemma talk while escorting their guest
A016 Lopez Easier Said Than Done
The girls are having trouble on the EAGLE-5
B019 Iverson Two-Way Mirror
Fiona, AKA faux-Selene, explains the situation
A017 Stark Waiting and Talking
Jayson is growing impatien as the BASTET waits
A018 Ya'Han Moving and Talking
The ladies give Krokas a hard time
B020 Andersson Preparations
Sofia gets Sickbay ready while Satella watches
A019 Morningstar Keeping Busy
Erik goes to Main Engineering to help Gemma
B021 Enel Battle for EAGLE-5
The BASTET swoops in to the rescue
A020 Bonviva Etcetera, Etcetera, Etcetera
The ladies arrive on the BASTET
A021 Shar'El Questions
Shar'El and Zub escort Krokus to guest quarters
B022 Dima/Iverson Counseling Session
Selene speak with Nicole
A022 Lopez/Dima Counselling The Counsellor
Nicole goes to speak to Adriana to help her
A023 Bruxa Time To Rest
Satella and Sofia talk about what happened
A024 Ya'Han Tactical Meeting
Zub goes to see Ya'Han
B023 Gemma Character Assessment
Gemma tries to figure out the guests as well as her
B024 Dima/Iverson/
Morningstar
Negotiations
Things get heated between Selene and Erik
A025 Shar'El One Team
Erik returns to his quarters and speaks with Shar'El
B025 A'Janni Night Watch
Zub talks to A'Janni about his sense of smell
A026 Lopez Starry Night
Adriana is unable to sleep, haunted by nightmares
B026 Enel Rattled
Zub, followed by Shar'El, interrogates the guests
A027 Bruxa Do All That You Can
Satella notices something is wrong with Adriana
A028 Bonviva/Shar'El Tea and Hope and Memories
Xana and Shar'El rush to Adriana's side
B027 Iverson/
Morningstar
Pre-Mission Briefing
In groups, the crew gets ready for the briefing
A029 Stark Alone
Satella runs into a lonely looking Jayson
B028 Mitshiba Together
Aki is greatful for working with Maya
A030 Lopez Not Alone
Xana visits Adriana in Sickbay
B029 Enel Roses
Zub is having issues with so many people present
A031 Paquette Not Happy One Bit
Sonja is infuriated by what she saw
A032 Morningstar/
Iverson
Hop, Skip and a Jump
Mission briefing and an unexpected D-jump
B030 Dima/Bonviva Space Full of Memories
Nicole goes to see Xana who is feeling down
A033 Shar'El Intel Operative's Log
Shar'El makes a secret report to Koniki
B031 Mitshiba Miss Congeniality... NOT
Aki and Maya try to explain Abrasivnyy
B032 Andersson/
Bruxa
Medical Debate
Nicole and Satella discuss Gemma's new personality
B033 Enel Do I Bug You?
Zub tries to reason with Abrasivnyy
B034 Iverson Decisions and Actions
Fiona and Abrasivnyy make things complicated
A034 Ya'Han Time for Red
Ya'Han volunteers to help search for Abrasivnyy
A035 Lopez Diplomatic Force
Adriana convinces Xana to go back tot he station
B035 Andersson Who Helps the Helpers
Sofia and Nic join in on Gemma's search
A036 Morningstar From One Surprise to the...
Xana, Selene and Erik set up the teams
B036 Enel Scout's Honor
Ya'Han sets ground rules with Zub and A'Janni
A037 Stark Orders
Jayson looks at Ya'Han and contemplates his role
B037 Mitshiba Fitting In
Aki tries to accept her role in the away mission
A038 Bonviva Acts of Optimism
The EAGLE-5 leaves for the station
A039 Shar'El Observations
Shar'El observes the members of the away team
B038 A'Janni Huddle
A'Janni compares Ya'Han to Sheetora
A040 Stark Huddle, Part 2
Jayson reacts to Ya'Han's purple hair
B039 Iverson The Arrival
The EAGLE-5 lands at the station
A041 Lopez Weak Knees
Adriana has difficulties being on the station
A042 Morningstar/
Bonviva
Promises Made, Promises...
Erik holds Xana back from rushing to Adriana
B040 Enel Tea For Two
The Arena team gets into trouble
A043 Bruxa Personal Space
Selene's team has a minor run-in with trouble
A044 Ya'Han Battle For Life and Death
Things go from bad to worse for the Arena team
B041 Mitshiba Something Different
The exploration teams finds something odd
A045 Maya A Stab in the Dark
The Lower Level teams finds a corpse
A046 Shar'El Echoes of Memories
The exploration team learns about the crystals
Post # Character Title
B042 A'Janni Injured Kitty
The arena teams seeks refuge, A'Janni is hurt
A047 Bonviva The Performer
The Lower Level team encounters Charlie
B043 Enel Tiger Butter
Zub tries to help lessen A'Janni's pain
B044 Gemma Unfriendly Alliance
Abrasivnyy observes people in the Zocalo
A048 Ya'Han A Simple Mistake
Ya'Han mistakingly brings Stella back to her team
A049 Maya The Cost
Maya meets people who might be Shillians
B045 Andersson Feeling As If You Were...
Sofia is having trouble waiting
A050 Bruxa Small Hands
A small child steals a med kit
A051 Stark Mad Dash
The Zocalo team rushes after the speedy thief
A052 Lopez Change of Plan
The Oasis team decides on a new course of action
B046 Enel Reunion
The teams find themselves back together
A053 Ya'Han Be True to Thy Self
Ya'Han and Jayson talk about their situation
A054 Bonviva How Ben Discovered The...
Xana discoveres that Ben is actually her son
A055 Morningstar Understanding
Colonel Morningstar takes the refugee to safety
B047 Dima/Andersson Floating Pain
Nic and Sofia share a moment
B048 Iverson The Goal
Shar'El gives her report to Selene
A056 Stark Volunteer
Jayson makes a decision
B049 Mitshiba Lacking The Skills
Aki deals with the multiple issues around her
A057 Lopez/Bonviva Ambassadorial Counseling
Xana and Adriana talk, entertain Ben
B050 Enel/A'Janni Eclipse
Zub and A'Janni talk to Satella
A058 Ya'Han Lover's Quarrel
Jayson and Ya'Han have a heart-to-heart
A059 Bruxa Hurt
Satella goes face-to-face with Stella
B051 Enel Unnerved
Zub deals with the aftermath of killing someone
B052 Lopez/Dima Take a Number
Nicole tries to Speak to Adriana
B053 A'Janni Heightened Senses
A'Janni hears something approaching
B054 Iverson A New Plan
A new plan is partially conceived
A060 Shar'El Show of Force
Shar'El speaks to Satella
A061 Lopez Hidden Rage
Adriana walks towards Zub and the others
B055 Enel/Dima Presence
Adriana verbally attacks Zub
A062 Bruxa Different Self
Jayson goes to speak to Satella
A063 Bonviva Consequences
Ben is unset and Xana goes 'mother bear'
B056 Dima Under Duress
Nicole confronts Adriana
B057 Mitshiba Expectations
Aki speaks with Selene before moving to Shar'El
B058 A'Janni Twitching Ears
A'Janni hears something faint in the distance
A064 Stark Unseen
The Covert Assault team moves forward
B059 Enel/Lopez/ Stark/Dima Decamped
The team goes looking for Stella's missing body
B060 Mitshiba Field Work
Aki work on the device given to her by Shar'El
B061 Enel Moppet
The teams makes its way through a kitchen
B062 Gemma Her Home
Abrasivnyy recalls her first time on the station
A065 Lopez Between a Rock and a...
Adriana struggles with her feelings and emotions
A066 Ya'Han Agent of Destruction
Sonju and Han come to meet the crew
B063 Mitshiba Getting Closer
The team gets information on Hel's whereabouts
B064 Enel It's Alive
The Oasis' Guardian and a Dr discuss reanimation
B065 Gemma Her Way
Abrasivnyy helps the team
B066 A'Janni A Lizard and a Cat...
The team arrives at the Oasis and the Morgue
B067 Iverson The Showdown
The crew is captured and threatened by Sonju
A067 Ya'Han Han to Han Discussion
Ya'Han and Han have a heart-to-heart
A068 Bonviva Heart to Heart
Xana and Ben have a heart-to-heart discussion
B068 Andersson Change of Plan
Sofia tries to takje care of Erik's injuries
A069 Lopez Post Mortem
The team tries to identify the burnt corpse
A070 Shar'El Hide and Seek
The team fails to find Hel
B069 Enel Peekaboo
The team returns and find the others in trouble
A071 Morningstar Prelude to War
The Shillians are seen setting up to attack
A072 Ya'Han Searching
Ya'Han searches for a way to express her feelings
A073 Maya Pride
The Shillians, in cat form, attack the robots
B070 Iverson Check Mate
The batlle is brought to an unexpected end
B071 Mitshiba A Few Questions Left to...
Aki questions Selene about Gemma
A074 Shar'El Something Changed
Abrassivnyy/Gemma confronts Shar'El
A075 Morningstar Is It The End?
Captain Morningstar talks to Colonel Moringstar
B072 Enel Coping
Zub and A'Janni do their best to cope
A076 Bruxa From A Distance
Satella accepts the reason for her actions
B073 Gemma Moving On
Abrasivnyy recalls her first encounter with Sonju
B074 Mitshiba/Iverson Hel's Fury
The crews are forced to abandon the station
B075 A'Janni One Eye Open
A'Janni relaxes while sitting at the FCO's station
A077 Lopez/Bonviva Ambassadorial Meeting
Adriana recalls an earlier chat with Xana
B076 Enel Rainmaker
Zub goes to see Nicole in the Holodeck
A078 Bonviva Untangling Webs
Xana deals with personal matters with her Ex
A079 Shar'El Business As Usual
Shar'El gets back in her ILO routine
A080 Ya'Han Together And Apart
Ya'Han and Jayson enjoy breakfast together
A081 Stark Explanation
Jayson explains his reason for writing the letter
B077 Gemma The Awakening
Gemma is in sickbay with Sofia and Satella
B078 Iverson Recognition
Sarena is given her own command
B079 Gemma/Enel/ Dima Counseling Session
Sarena is given her own command
A082 Maya Scientific Support
Aki offers her support to Maya
B080 Lopez/Bonviva/ Dima Crazier than Expected
Adriana & Xana attenda a counseling session
A083 Shar'El Face-to-Face
Shar'El Confronts Gemma
B081 Gemma/Enel The Awakening (Rev...)
Gemma wakes up in Sickbay with memory loss
B082 Mitshiba A Place Like No Other
Aki finishes the holodeck program
A084 Dima/Bonviva Grateful
Xana, Nic and Sofia head to the holodeck
A085 Lopez/Bonviva Journey
Xana speaks with Adriana
A086 Stark Perfection
Jayson admires Ya'Han and deals with Sonja
B083 A'Janni/Enel Friends
A'Janni and Zub discuss Gemma
B084 Valentine/Iverson A New Journey
Selene and Sarena make their announcements
B085 Mitshiba Settling In
Aki makes her first visit to the bridge as ExO
M13-B001: USS BASTET: Iverson: 35012.0730 ("Here We Go, Part 1")
---
"Here We Go, Part 1"
(Previous Post: (ANU) "Things Are Getting Complicated" / (BAS) "Character Conflicts")
---

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35012.0730

"All preparations have been completed," Commander Valentine announced as she walked onto the bridge. "Our guests are on board and making themselves comfortable in their quarters. I do not think Commander Shr'El was overly happy about not being granted access to the bridge right away."

"Do keep in mind that both Captain Morningstar, Commander Shar'El and the rest of the crew of the ANUBIS are not used to being mere spectators. They are, as we are, people of action and it would be just as difficult for us to be in their position, so a little bit of understanding and compassion would not go amiss," Selene suggested to her First Officer, making sure that her words were also heard by everyone else present on the command deck of the USS BASTET.

"I will make sure that Counselor Dima and Doctor Andersson take a few minutes to check in on them," Sarena offered.

"You are the epitome of kindness," Selene fired back before turning her attention to her Chief of Security. "Ensign Enel, are we ready to depart?"

"Yes Captain, the massive lizardman replied, his three-fingered hands dancing over the security console with grace and ease. "All stations are secured."

"Main engineering reporting that all systems, including temporal and dimensional drives, are at full readiness," Gemma reported anticipating the next question from the Captain. While acting as Chief Engineer, the woman was still keeping up with her duties and responsibilities as the Intel Liaison Officer, her workstation displaying images from the quarters where their guests were at this time.

"Very well," Captain Iverson acknowledged. "Lieutenant A'Janni, take us out."

"The Caitian nodded his head. "Clearing all moorings and setting course for the space doors. Forward motion using only thrusters.

This was one of the parts of a new mission Selene enjoyed, seeing the ship make its way through the massive doors and into open space ushered the endless possibilities that waited for them in the darkness between the stars. The only thing Captain Iverson found more enjoyable was to travel through those same doors in the opposite direction, indicated that they had returned home once again. Hopefully, this mission would see these two special events happen close to one another.

A general hush of silence spread through the bridge as the doors moved apart from one another revealing the asteroid field the secret base of NEW ALEXANDRIA called home. The majority of those present had seen this specific scene many times before but it did not change the fact that most found it exhilarating.

"We have cleared the space doors," the Caitian Flight Control Officer reported.

"Lieutenant Mitshiba, have you figured out the best location or us to cross over into this other dimension?" Captain Iverson inquired of her Chief Science Officer.

"I have Captain," Misaki confirmed. "The data provided by Lieutenant Commander Maya through Captain Morningstar made things very easy. Crossing to this new dimension should not present any special problems, but in order to make sure that we are in the best possible situation to locate their missing officers, we would need to make the dimensional jump as close to ORION as possible."

"That is going to add several days to our mission just with us getting there," Commander Valentine pointed out in a less than enthusiastic manner.

"I am afraid that this cannot be helped," the Asian woman explained. "Although we have the dimensional coordinates for our destination, we have no way to know about the physical properties that are there. Completing a jump here instead of near ORION could mean that we would find ourselves millions of lightyears from where we need to be, and we would not have any clues as to where that would be. By making our jump as close to the location said to be where the missing officers vanished, we greatly increase the odds of our being able to find clues as to their current location."

"There goes the idea of a quick and easy mission," Gemma noted aloud.

"Helm," Selene said as she turned back to look at the Flight Control Officer. "Set course for ORION, maximum speed."

"Setting course for ORION," A'Janni said as he entered the required coordinates into his console. "Maximum safe sustainable speed... Warp 8."

"Bridge to Doctor Andersson and Counselor Dima," Commander Valentine said after reaching for her communicator.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 35012.0740  

"This does not sound good," Nicole said while looking at Sofia in a concerned manner before reaching for her comm badge. "Go ahead Commander, what can we do for you?"

=/\= The BASTET is on route for ORION. Lieutenant Mitshiba believes that it is best for us to perform the dimensional jump there in order to increase our odds of finding the missing officers of the ANUBIS. =/\=

"This is going to add several days to our journey," Doctor Andersson said, already anticipating the reaction of her former crew members.

=/\= That is why I would like you two to go and relay this latest information to them. As the Counselor, I believe that Dima will be able to manage whatever anger this news might trigger. I also hope that the fact Doctor Andersson was a member of the crew before will help soften the impact a little. =/\=

Sofia let out an elongated sigh. "Maya will understand this without any need for her to be convinced. I am not so sure that things are going to be as smooth with the other officers, especially Captain Morningstar and Commander Shar'El. It is their officers who are missing and I am sure that they feel a certain level of responsibility for this even if they had nothing to do with it."

"Maybe it would be best for us to start with Maya then," Nicole suggested. "If we can have her join us and explain things to the Captain and First Officer, it might help make it more acceptable to them."

"As I recall, having Maya explain *anything* is never a good way for anyone to accept it," Sofia said thinking back to a few instances when the Shillian scientist had gone into one of her detailed explanations. "That said, I do agree that having her support our claims will help. Maybe not as much as we would hope for, but it will be better than having just the two of us there by ourselves."

=/\= Good, =/\= Sarena noted. =/\= Proceed as you see fit and let us know if there are any problems. 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) 
M17-A001: USS ANUBIS: Maya: 35012.0745 ("Here We Go, Part 2")
---
"Here We Go, Part 2"
(Previous Posts: (ANU) "Things Are Getting Complicated" / (BAS) "Here We Go, Part 1")
---

Setting: USS BASTET, Guest Quarters  
Stardate: 35012.0745

Since her arrival, the Shillian Scientist had been carefully scrutinizing every square centimeter of the quarters she was assigned for the duration of this mission. Starfleet was not known for being overly original in the format and decor of room on their ships, but Maya was curious to see what subtle differences she would be able to find. After all, it was not every day that she had the chance to compare the inside of not two but three ships in such a short period of time.

The quarters were spacious, maybe not quite as large as those onboard the USS ANUBIS but most certainly larger than those found on the USS HATHOR. No matter the size though, the Shillian was happy to be exploring something new as it kept her from overthinking about their new mission and the simple fact that they were going to be traveling to another dimension in the hopes of rescuing Adriana, Ya'Han, Sonja and Xana.

The sound of the door chime reluctantly pulled the scientist out of her investigation. Maybe it was time for them to make the jump to this other dimension and she would be invited to witness the process. Another possibility that came to mind was that the Chief Science Officer of the BASTET had come to confirm some of what Maya had uncovered during her analysis of the captured alien shuttle. The Shillian found both options very appealing making her waste no time rushing to the door and greeting whoever she would find standing on the other side.

"Dima?!?" Maya exclaimed as the sight of the joint Trill whom she had not seen in quite some time. The last missing the two of them had shared was when the crew of the ANUBIS was hunting for the crystals that would eventually come together to allow the creation of the 'Blink-Drive' that was now on board the USS HATHOR. "How are you? Have you received any news from Professor Elijah Arken? I doubt that the man would have kept contact with you even though he was partially responsible for your sudden vanishing. I guess I always hoped that he would feel some sort of guilt in what he put you through, but alas knowing him as the eccentric scientist that he is, I am surprised and very happy to see that he did not seek you out and locked you up in some unknown and 'never-before-heard-of' research lab to be examined for him to see if the use of the crystals had any negative effects on you. I am very glad to see you and I am equally glad to see you, Doctor Andersson. You both appear to be well. You are well, right? You seem to be bothered by something or has your lives on board the BASTET been so difficult that you have forgotten how to smile, not that I actually believe that to be possible as it would require a very specific eradication of synapses in your brains."

"Yes, we are well," Nicole said with a smile interrupting Maya for fear that she would continue on her ramblings. The exchange served to confirm that nothing had changed as far as the Shillian was concerned. The woman was still as talkative as she had ever been, and somehow Dima found this simple revelation to be comforting. "We came to talk to you about something that we need your assistance with."

"You need my assistance?" Maya sounded like she was ready to jump clean out of her Trill-like spots at the news. "Please come in, come in. Tell me what I can do to help. My knowledge in the field of Psychology is next to non-existent and my expertise in medicine is limited to Exobiology and Xenobiology, but I would be delighted to help in whatever way I can." The Shillian continued as she moved away from the door leaving her would-be guests still out in the corridor.

"You know, I didn't remember her talking so much," Sofia said to Nicole in a whispered voice.

"I believe the term you are looking for is 'Traumatic Psychological Memory Blockage'," the Counselor stated. "You do not remember because the memory is too traumatic for you to deal with, so your mind is hiding it from your conscious thoughts."

"Funny," the Doctor scuffed but as she looked into the room to see the Shillian scientist still rambling on, Sofia turned back to look at Nicole. "On second thought, you might be right."

"Of course I am right," the Trill quietly laughed as she walked into the guest quarters assigned to the Chief Science Officer of the USS ANUBIS. "Maya, allow me to go straight to the point," the Counsellor said once again interrupting the woman. "We need your help to talk to Captain Morningstar and Commander Shar'El."

"Is there some sort of problem?" The Shillian appeared to be quickly moving towards a nervous collapse. "Did something happen to our missing officers?"

"Nothing of the sort," Sofia reassured. "It is just that our journey to whatever this other dimension they are in will be delayed by a few days as we need to travel to ORION."

"Lieutenant Mitshiba believes that it would be safer for the BASTET to make the dimensional jump as close to the location where your people vanished as we have no idea of the physical properties of our destination," Nicole added thinking that Maya would appreciate the specific and scientific details.

"That makes perfect sense," Maya noted without any hesitation. "I should have thought of that myself. I was not taking into account that the dimensional data I provided might point to a location beyond those that the BASTET had already traveled to. Since there would not be any available information as to where we would arrive in this new dimension, we need to reduce our initial field of research to be as small as possible to permit us to find some clues as to the location of our missing officers."

"That was easier than I expected," Doctor Andersson happily chimed.

"So you will help us speak to Captain Morningstar and Commander Shar'El and make them understand that the days of a couple of days is necessary?" Counsellor Dima asked, more than certain that the Shillian would be more than happy to lend a hand.

"Captain Morningstar will not be happy," Maya pointed out. "We have already been waiting several days to board the BASTET and be underway with the rescue mission, and now we have to wait another two days. I am sure that he will come to realize that this is necessary, but it will not change the fact that he will not be happy about it. As for Commander Shar'El, I fear that out of the two of them, she will be the one to make more of a scene. She sees the safety of the crew as one of her primary responsibilities, and having to wait as we all have is not making her disposition any more pleasant."

"That is the reason why we came to you first," Nicole explained. "We figured that with the three of us presenting the facts and explaining things, both the Captain and Commander will be more inclined to accept the situation as being the best possible course of action, regardless of how unpleasant it may be."

"Of course," Maya agreed. "I will help. I am sure that the three of us will be able to present the fact in a manner that both Captain Morningstar and Commander Shar'El will come to accept. Of course, having a pair of hypo-sprays loaded with a mild to medium strength sedative might not be a bad idea."

An expression of utter horrour engraved itself onto the features of the Chief Medical officer of the USS BASTET, prompting the Counsellor to quickly set the record straight. "Relax Sofia, Maya is just kidding."

"We better get going," the Shillian scientist said forcing her way between the two other women. "The longer we wait to speak to the Captain and Commander, the more difficult it will be for them to accept this as something that cannot be challenged in any way or form."

Doctor Andersson watched as the Shillian walked out of the room before Sofia turned her attention back onto Nicole. "You are sure she was kidding? She did not sound like she was."

"She was," Counsellor Dima confirmed. "At least I hope she was," Nicole added under her breath as both Sofia and her followed Maya out into the corridor.

---
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)
M17-A002: USS ANUBIS: Stark: 35012.0800 ("Thinking of Her")
"Thinking of Her"
[previous (ANU) "Here We Go, Part 2" / (BAS) "Here We Go, Part 1"]

[/\]

Setting: USS BASTET, Guest Quarters
Stardate: 35012.0800

It felt weird not being on the bridge as the ship left their base of operations. Seeing the massive space doors from the side felt wrong in so many ways but he understood that this was not *his* ship. Captain Morningstar, Commander Shar'El and the rest of the team were here on board the BASTET as guests and nothing more.  All he could do was wait and see what would happen next.

With the ship now at warp speed, the COO just stared and admired the streaking lights that flew by his window. This was certainly not the first time he took a few moments to enjoy such scenery but like his feelings about being on this ship instead of on the ANUBIS, everything about this felt wrong. The last time she had looked out at the stars in this manner was when Ya'Han and he were still sharing quarters, something that now felt a lifetime ago. So many things had taken place between then and now that Jayson could barely manage to recall them all.

The arrival of his clone on board the ANUBIS, the desertion of Ya'Han and their journey to OLTHAR PRIME. The more he thoughts about all those things, the more Jayson could not believe what had happened. It was as if the universe had decided to play a cruel joke on him, never giving him the slightest moment to manage to get his feet back under him.  In the latest twist, Ya'Han was now in a different dimension leaving Stark to wonder if she was even thinking of him.

Of course, he hoped that she was but everything that had taken place as of late made him realize that this was unlikely. The moment his clone had come into the picture things started to change, and despite his greatest efforts to hold on to whatever was left of their relationship it was evident that his desires alone would not prove enough to turn things around.

Jayson closed his eyes, thinking back to one particular kiss they had shared. Ya'Han had taken on her green hair, something that Jayson understood as meaning that she was his and his alone, but clearly that was no longer the case.  As his thoughts lingered onto the kiss, his fingers moved to touch his lips as if to confirm that the presence he felt there was indeed only a figment of his imagination. The moment this was confirmed, his thoughts jumped onto another kiss, one far more recent.

The image of a woman with silver hair replaced that of the green-haired woman that had been there seconds before. He had fought against this from the start, but Satella had made her position clear, she wanted to be what she believed he needed, a companion that Ya'Han no longer was.

Reality came crashing back down on him when the sound of the door chime echoed through the room causing the COO to straighten his uniform and step away from the window. This was not the time for him to be emotional regardless of how he truly felt. Captain Morningstar would need him to be at his best if they were to succeed in their mission to find and bring their missing people back safe and sound. The door chime rang once more causing Jayson to move towards the door. Maybe it was Captain Iverson or her First Officer who had come to speak to him. Stark had noticed when studying the BASTET's crew roster that the position of a Chief of Operations was vacant, so maybe, just maybe, they would allow him to make himself useful right away.

Jayson remained silent as the door opened revealing the person who had come to speak to him. He had not expected it to be her and yet he found himself not disliking the idea that she was there standing in front of him, a gentle smile gracing her lips.  "I hope that I am not interrupting anything," Satella asked as she looked up at Jayson.

With a full 12 inches difference between their heights, he felt like a giant when looking down at her but the way she looked back at him made him see that she was not bothered by this. "I was just looking at the stars and waiting to see what would happen next."

"Being here on the BASTET is weird," the Doctor said. "At least on the HATHOR we could force ourselves to see the ship as being ours, even if only for a few days, but here there is nothing we can do to make us feel more at home because this is *not* our ship."

"I suspect that Captain Morningstar and Commander Shar'El feel the same way," Jayson said. "Come, there is no reason why you should have to stand in the corridor like that while we talk."

Satella seemed genuinely surprised to be invited in, but she did not hesitate to accept the offer. "I checked with the computer, we have access to all of the common areas of the ship, so at least that's a plus. We are not restricted to our quarters."

"I doubt Captain Morningstar would have allowed that," Stark said. "He asked Captain Iverson for help in getting our people back, so there is no reason for us to be treated as anything less than fellow shipmates."

"Of course, you are absolutely right," Satella quickly said. "I was just pointing out the fact that we can go and visit some of the areas of this ship. It may not be the ANUBNIS but I am sure that we could find something interesting to keep us occupied while we wait to see what happens next."

Jayson hesitated. He was not sure if what he heard was what she meant to say or if it was just his current emotional state spinning her words to suit what he needed to hear, to be made to feel wanted in some minute way.  "I think it would be best if we wait to hear from Captain Morningstar or Commander Shar'El first. We have no idea how long this trip to another dimension could take, in fact, for all we know, we could already be there."

"It's not that simple," Satella chuckled. "Remember, I served on the BASTET before transferring to the ANUBIS. I am sure that Doctor Andersson would be more than happy to welcome us in *her* sickbay, but I understand what you are saying. I am happy to wait with you if you will allow me."

Jayson hesitated once more. To say yes might invite her to believe that he had changed his mind from his earlier stated position following their sharing a kiss. Him saying no, on the other hand, could make her believe that he did not want anything to do with her, which in all honesty was not the truth. No matter the situation he found himself in, it always seemed to be a complicated affair.

"No," he said causing the smile on her lips to instantly vanish. "I do not want you to go. I think it will make it easier for both of us if we wait together."

The smile on the silver-haired woman returned, brighter and before. "Let me get you something to drink," she said while making her way to the replicator. "Unless things have drastically changed on the BASTET, there should still be a few interesting drink selections available. Don't worry, none of those are made with real alcohol, but the taste will definitively make your head spin, at least for a few seconds."

Jayson just watched as the woman went to the replicator and returned shortly after with two identical drinks. So many questions, so many emotions ran through his head but all he could do was to reach for one o the glasses and taste the liquid held inside, never taking his eyes from the woman standing in front of him.

[/\]
Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant Jayson Stark [Access Character BIO for Jayson Stark]
Chief of Operations
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M17-A003: USS ANUBIS: Lopez: 35012.0800 ("Another Day In Paradise")
-=-=-
"Another Day In Paradise"
[Previous post: (ANU) "Thinking of Her" & (BAS) "Here We Go, Part 1"]
-=-=-

Setting:  SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Guest Quarters
Stardate: 35012.0800

With every day that passed, Adriana felt a little better. Instead of sleeping on a cold floor, she was able to enjoy the softness of a bed. That alone would have made her smile but the feeling of a warm blanket over her as she peacefully slept made the sensation even more enjoyable. Wherever and whatever this place was could not be compared to the ANUBIS, but thanks to Xana, Sonja and Ya'Han it almost felt like home.

"Good morning." The sound of Ya'Han's voice made Adriana smile as it instantly made her feel safe, a sensation that she had been denied for far too long. The smile on the Counselor's lips grew larger as she opened her eyes to see the black and red-haired woman looking back at her. Granted her vision was still a little blurry, but the simple fact that she was able to see was another major bonus as compared to what she had endured not so long ago.

"Good morning," Adriana replied silently debating as to whether or not to try and get out of bed. She knew that her restored strength was enough to allow her to perform this simple task, but the idea of leaving the warmth and comfort of her bed was less than enticing.  A quick scan of the room they all shared revealed that the Chief of Security and Ship's Counselor were the only ones here. "Where are the others?"

"Sonja is inspecting the station. She is not the type of person to be locked in a room with nothing to do. The moment she found a way to unlocked the door, she figured that the rest of the station was hers to explore," Ya'Han said. "I can't say that I am against her doing so as if there is a way for us to get off this dark prison, she is the one to find it."

"What about Xana?" The Junior Ambassador suspected that Ya'Han's reluctance in reporting the whereabouts of the Ambassador meant that the Bolian/Human woman was up to something.

"She's alright."

"That is not what I asked," Adriana pointed out as she swung one leg out from beneath the comfort and warmth of the blanket.

"You need to rest," Ya'Han quickly said moving in to block the woman's attempt to get out of bed.

"Just tell me where Xana is," the Junior Ambassador demanded. It was not that long ago that the Counselor would never have even considered raising her voice in such a manner, but this was no the woman who was currently in bed, recuperating from having been beaten to near-death only to now be kept in the dark as to her friend and mentor's whereabouts.

"You have been asleep for several days now," Ya'Han explained. "You needed to rest so we all understood and took turns watching over you. Yesterday, Xana failed to return after she went out exploring the station. She figured that she could use the identity of her dimensional alter ego who is here on the station to get more information."

"Alter ego?" Adriana was clearly lost following that statement.

"I guess you would not know about this," the Nylaan said trying o figure out the best possible way to explain things. "We are in another dimension, one that appears to echo our own in some ways, mainly the presence of people who look like us but have slightly different names and apparently went through very different lives to bring them here.  Sonja and I have been searching for Xana every chance we have had."

"What are we waiting for?" Adriana said, abandoning the warmth and comfort of the bed with one single move that saw the blanket fly through the air. "Let's go."

"I do not believe that you are in any condition to be up," Ya'Han said. "We have not had any access to proper medical equipment, so your recovery has been slow. Although the swelling of your eyes has visibly gone down, I am sure that your vision is less than perfect."

"Even with only partial eyesight, I can help look for Xana. An extra set of eyes is just that, an extra set that will allow us to cover more ground. If she is out there in need, it is our duty to find her, just like you found me when I needed help," the Junior Ambassador argued.

"Counselor, please do not force me to pull rank on you," the full-fledged Lieutenant said. "You are still weak and need to rest."

"Thank you, I appreciate what you are trying to do," Adriana said in a soft and grateful tone. "As for rank," she continued in a much more assertive voice, "I do not believe that you can order a Junior Ambassador who is on a diplomatic mission to find a missing Federation Ambassador."

"I can see that there is no talking you out of this," the Nylaan Chief of Security said realizing that this was not a fight that she wanted to be a part of. "Fine, we can go, but you and I are sticking together."

"I would not have it any other way," the Junior Ambassador said wrapping her arms around that of Ya'Han as both a way to confirm that she would not be straying far and to also provide her with the additional support she feared she might need as they went searching for Xana.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Lieutenant JG Adriana Lopez [Access Character BIO for Adriana Lopez]
Ship's Counselor & Junior Ambassador
USS ANUBIS
M17-A004: USS ANUBIS: Ya'Han: 35012.0815 ("Thinking of Him")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Thinking of Him"
[previous post were (ANU) "Another Day In Paradise" / (BAS) "Here We Go, Part 1"]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Zocalo
Stardate: 35012.0815

It was weird for her to be wondering this place while openly displaying the black colored hair of the commoners of NYLA IV. As the daughter of the High Sovereign, Ya'Han had been brought up to look down upon those who displayed such a color as unworthy of being anything else but the lowest of the low. Following her escape, she took on that color as her own because it reflected in part how she felt. Yes, it allowed her to hide her lineage from those she came in contact with but it also perfectly displayed how she felt; an outcast branding her to be what she had been taught to despise -- a nobody.

On NYLA IV such a color would have called upon her glares of loathing or at best to be ignored as if not even being alive. Here, on this dark and isolated station found in another dimension, the same black hair caused people to look upon her with an expression of concern or even to run away in fear. Ya'Han understood that this was due to the woman known as 'The Agent', her doppelganger from this dimension. As long as the two of them did not run into one another, things would be fine and risking such an encounter was most certainly worth it in order to find Ambassador Bonviva.

Ya'Han smiled as her eyes fell upon the familiar silhouette of Jayson Stark. The Sec/Tac had to quickly remind herself that this was not the ANUBIS' Chief of Operations she was looking at but rather his dimensional counterpart. The man known as Jay was nothing like the Jayson she knew.  Hidden behind the corner of one of the merchant's booths, the black-haired woman watched the man as he coward from one location to the next.  She knew that she was supposed to be searching for Xana, but for some reason, she could not resist studying the man and comparing everything he did to the man she knew.

Jay was a mere shadow of what Jayson was, possessing none of his strength of character or kindness. Through observing 'The Corwad', Ya'Han realized just how much she admired Jayson for the person that he was. It was true that her dealings with his clone had made her look upon the man through a different set of eyes, seeing flaws that had never been there before. At first, she wondered if maybe the Jayson Stark she knew might not be the man he should have been, but seeing the way Jay was, the black-haired Nylaan quickly realized that Jayson was just the man he needed to be.

A wave of deeply-felt sadness swept through Ya'Han as she thought back to the way she had treated Jayson lately. He had not deserved her distancing herself the way she had, making him feel as if she no longer loved him. The sacrifice and death of the clone had marked her, that there was no doubt, but it should not have affected her relationship the way it had. Giving Jay one last look, the woman with the black hair vowed to make things better between Jayson and her, that is as soon as they would find a way back to their dimension and lives.

"Han!" The unexpected forceful call made Ya'Han turn to look in the direction from which the demanding voice had come from. There, the Nylaan saw who she initially believed to be Doctor Bruxa but quickly realized that it was her counterpart from this dimension. The expression on the woman's face was like nothing the Sec/Tac had ever seen or could have imagined to see on the delicate features of the ANUBIS' Chief Medical Officer. "Stop wasting time, we need you."

"We?" Ya'Han asked, clearly louder than she should have as it drew a deathly glare from the silver-haired woman.

"Yea... *we*," the woman growled. "If you are all done keeping an eye on that sorry waste of skin Jay, *we* need you *now*. So, are you coming or do I have to kill him before you decide to follow?"

"Kill him? Why?" Ya'Han gasped.

"Listen, Han," the woman said moving toe-to-toe with the Nylaan. "I do not know why you are interested in Jay nor do I care to know. You are 'The Agent", and am just 'The Executioner', we do what we are told and that's that. If for some reason, that coward of a man or anyone else gets in the way of either our responsibilities, we are obliged to act accordingly. So, I will say it for the last time, either you come with or I will gladly bury a blade straight into his sorry excuse for a heart."

Although Jay was not Jayson, Ya'Han could not bear the thought of the man being subjected to such an unforgiving fate for no other reason than she had given him more attention then she should have. Without even casting a last glance in his direction, the black-haired woman agreed to follow without any further resistance.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Hanali Han

Chief of Security / Chief Tactical Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M13-B002: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: 35012.0830 ("Predictable Uncertainties")
"Predictable Uncertainties"
Previous posts: (ANU) "Thinking of Him" & (BAS) "Here We Go, Part 1"

///^\\\  
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35012.0830

With the initial rush over and the BASTET well on its way to the ORION system at maximum warp speed, the senior officers were now busy with their own affairs. At first glance, this was just another trans-dimensional mission that would take the ship to a never-before explored location, but the atmosphere throughout the ship made it clear to all that there was much more to this. The sense of discomfort was tangible and made it clear that this was not just another exploration mission, this was, for all intents and purposes, a 'search and rescue' mission.

Four members of the ANUBIS crew were missing, and it was up to those on board the BASTET to do everything they could to find them. The problem at the moment was that there were far more questions than answers as to how they would proceed in doing this.

Commander Valentine casually made her way to the science station, making sure that Aki saw her coming to ensure that she would not be startled. "Have you identified the best location for us to use the D-Drive?"

This was an odd question coming from the First Officer, Sarena knew that this had already been done and never before had the Commander felt the need to make sure in such a direct way. Not entirely certain as to how to take this, Aki just decided to answer as if this had been completely natural. "Of course, Commander. I have identified the best possible location for the BASTET to perform a dimensional jump as well as two back-up alternates. Is there a problem?"

"None whatsoever," the First Officer said. "I just wanted to make sure everything was as ready as could be. Please, do not believe that my asking you this is in any way suggesting that you are not performed your duties to your usual high standards. I just believe that should either Captain Morningstar or Commander Shar'El make inquiries about anything that we are doing, that I would be able to state with perfect honesty that we are following the best possible course of action."

"Of course," Aki acknowledged. "When it is just us, meaning the crew of the BASTET, we accept everything that is done as being just that, what needed to be done at that time, but right now we are dealing with a group of people who will be second-guessing everything we do, even if they do not openly say so.  It is hard to hold this against them, in fact, I would say that feeling this way is actually a credit to their characters."

"How so?" The Commander asked with a distinct hint of surprise in her voice.

"It shows that they care about the well-being of those we are on this mission to find," the Asian woman stated. "Although there is no scientific way to measure how much or little someone cares about something or someone else, there are several distinct indicators that can be observed to get a better understanding of the level of this emotion."

Sarena laughed. "You just went from making me believe that you might be trying to take over our Ship's Counselor's duty to confirm that you are this ship's 'hard-core' scientist. Thank you and keep up with the great work. Let me know if there are any changes to where and when we are best to perform the D-jump."

"Of course, Commander," Aki said. "There is one thing that we might need to discuss before we arrive at the ORION system."

"And that would be?"

"ORION is not an out-of-the-way planet," the Asian woman explained. "It is a highly populated planet possessing a full array of orbital sensors. The local authorities will be able to see us coming even before we enter the system. From there, it would be next to impossible to approach the planet without being noticed and identified. This would not usually be an issue, but the moment we suddenly *vanish* after performing a dimensional jump, there are going to be a lot of people asking a lot of questions as to what happened. The problem is that using the combined Dimensional and Temporal drives to hide the ship is usually done when the ship is not moving."

"That *is* a problem," the Commander agreed. "Guess we all have been so busy with the objective of this mission that we missed that part on how we are going to get there. Do you have any suggestions as to how we can get around this?"

"As of right now, no," Aki sadly admitted. "But I do have a suggestion as to how we might be able to find a way a little faster."

"And that would be?"

Aki turned and called up a personnel file to be displayed on one of her monitors. "According to everything I have read about Lt. Commander Maya, she is a devoted and skilled scientist whose experience might prove her with a perspective on this problem that I have not considered. I know that she and the rest of the members of the ANUBIS have been asked to stay off the bridge and other sensitive areas, but I would like your permission to bring her to the Astrometric Lab so that we can work together on solving this problem."

"What about Gemma?" Sarena suggested. "I am sure that Wimda would be able to help just as much."

"Right now, Gemma is in engineering trying to get a little more speed out of the engines," the CSciO said. "I hoped to bring her in on this little scientific venture once her objective there was accomplished. With three scientists each possessing a very unique perspective on the universe around us, I am sure that we would be able to solve this problem well before we reach the ORION system."

"Sounds like you have given this plenty of thoughts, but then again, you always do," Sarena said. "Let me check with the Captain first, but I suspect that she will agree to your plan. I am looking forward to seeing how you three work this out, not to mention how you are going to explain to Lt. Commander Maya that Gemma and Wimda are the same physical person with thoughts and actions that are as individual as can be."

"See... that was something I hoped to be able to somehow avoid. If I can keep the two of them working on opposite sides of the lab, I might not have to explain anything about who Wimdalli is. To be completely honest, I doubt that a couple of days would be enough to do so anyway."

"Do what you need to do, and beyond that... good luck, on every front."

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant Misaki 'Aki' Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M13-B003: USS BASTET: Enel: 35012.0835 ("A Quantum")
=-=
“A Quantum”
Previous posts: (ANU) "Thinking of Him" / (BAS) "Predictable Uncertainties"

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 8, Arboretum
Stardate: 35012.0835

Erik Morningstar stood just inside the Arboretum after the door swished shut. 

Hands behind his back, he gazed up at leafy trees. The air smelled of moist soil and twigs. He wondered how much of the effect was real. The larger ANUBIS didn’t have room for much of an arboretum. He guessed this green space was a biggish room reliant on special effects. 

He followed a sharply curving path made of chipped wood. He touched the bark of one of the trees. It felt real enough, but overhead, the spreading branches interlaced with others appeared to be flat ceiling projections. Around another hairpin curve, a large man in a Security uniform sprawled on a bench. The man sported brown scales and an enormous head crest. He read a PADD grasped in one three-fingered hand. 

Erik started back, but then remembered he was here because he was bored. With no access to the bridge, why not explore an arboretum and its denizens? He approached the studious lizard, knowing only by description this was a Voth.

The Voth noticed him. He gathered long arms and legs for a hop to attention, but Eric waved him down. “Relax! You are Ensign Zub Enel, Security Chief.”

The ensign’s scales had colored slightly pink. He sat at attention, arms bent at his elbows and hands pressed beside his thighs. The Voth’s resonant voice could carry across a battlefield, though Enel kept it soft between them. “Correct, Captain Morningstar. It is an honor to meet you, sir.”

Eric sat a bench across the woody path from the Voth. “Me? An honor?”

“You are a highly decorated starship captain.”

“I see you follow our mission logs,” Morningstar said with an approving nod. “Our missing Chief of Security, Ya’Han, follows the BASTET’s, too. She is a fiery Nylaan. When we find her, you might get a kick out of her.”

The Security officer’s scaly face registered polite interest. Erik judged the Voth had missed the double meaning about Ya’Han, deadly warrior princess.

Instead of explaining, Erik raised his hand. “It is an honor to meet one of the few survivors of a bare-knuckled brawl with the Masters.”

At the mention of the Masters, the Voth’s golden eyes dilated and then pinpointed before resuming their ordinary size. Morningstar recognized that the Ensign had momentarily returned to that battle. 

Zub Enel said in a measured cadence like he was controlling difficult emotions, “Not to take anything away from the fighting prowess of Lt. A’Janni and Commander Valentine, sir, but the Masters fatally outnumbered us. We were one moment from oblivion.”

“We always are, Chief.”

Eric expected an officer so much his junior to say ‘Yes, sir!’ or something equally submissive. Instead Ensign Enel said, “One can hope that will not always be true, sir.” 

The prospect of enlightened conversation! The stoic captain hid his surprise. His eyebrows didn’t rise. His mouth didn’t pop open. He did not smile. He did lean forward from the edge of his bench. “It is my experience that among all sentient beings, there is a surprisingly frequent tendency toward violence, aggression, and domination. So, Ensign, you may never get a life without being one moment from oblivion.”

Enel tilted his big head to the side. His shoulders hunched and relaxed in the faintest of shrugs. The Captain read this as disagreement. “You may disagree with me.”

The Voth nodded.

“You may disagree with me out loud, Ensign.”

The lizard man looked at the Native American in way that wasn’t impertinent, challenging or rude. To Erik it was the gaze of someone paying close attention and maintaining steady eye contact out of interest. Morningstar decided this was a display of quiet confidence.

“Sir,” the Chief of Security said, “I would point out, with the utmost respect, that starships are more often sent to places and peoples where at least one party is being violent, aggressive or dominating.”

Erik took in the argument while keeping his face impassive. When the ensign didn’t elaborate, he said, “Your premise is that my experience has been biased toward more violent sentient beings and, thus, has skewed my perception of intelligent life as a whole.”

The SecTac raised a scaly finger, its black claw clipped flat. “I would say *may* have caused bias, sir.”

As he thought about the argument, Captain Morningstar squinted his brown eyes at the BASTET’s Chief of Security to see if inscrutability would make the ensign nervous enough to retract what he’d stated. The Voth briefly colored pink before the color faded to mocha brown. They sat regarding each other in lengthening silence. There was the rush of a wind in the crown of surrounding trees. He looked up into swaying branches, but felt no wind. Another special effect.

Erik slapped both hands on his thighs and stood. “*You* are an optimist.”

The Voth smiled a little. “Perhaps, but I would rather be a realist, sir. I want to see everything for what it is.”

Now slightly taller than the seated Voth, Morningstar looked down at him. “Be careful what you wish for.”

“So I have been told. Thank you for visiting with me, sir. And truly, welcome aboard.”

“Thank you, Ensign Enel, for giving me something new to think about.” As the Voth began to sort out limbs, Erik waved him down. “No need to jump to attention. Go back to reading. I can find my way out.”

The Security Chief relaxed. “Sir.”

Morningstar turned to follow the path ahead that he hadn’t taken. The wood chips wound him sharply around in such a way he was soon alone among tall bushes under a flexing leafy crown of branches that roared in the wind. Looking around, he noted the cleverness of the design of this space. The sharp switchbacks with little straight stretches amid tree trunks and high plants made the most of the floor space. With a little imagination, one could be alone on a crowded ship in just a few steps. It was not as as solitary as standing on the outer hull of the ANUBIS when he wanted some alone time, but still he was sure the ensign had returned to his reading and left the captain alone in his thoughts.

He smiled ever so briefly, feeling a fraction of a second’s relief from the burden of command. 

His smile faded. The Voth had disagreed with everything he’d brought up - politely, gently - but disagreed nonetheless. He looked back in the general direction where the now unseen towering lizard might be seated. Captain Iverson was lucky to have someone so junior yet willing to respectfully make his views known. 

Erik left the Arboretum, not smiling, but feeling refreshed.

=-=
David Michael Inverso

Chief Security and Tactical Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977

“Find joy and solace in the simple, and cultivate your utopia by feeling the Tao in every cubic inch of space.”
 - Wayne Dyer
M17-A005: USS ANUBIS: Bonviva: 35012.1030 ("Skulking, Lying, and Dying")
“Skulking, Lying, and Dying”
Previous posts: (ANU) "Thinking of Him" / (BAS) "A Quantum"

=/\=
Please, my friends.  Choose to live.
-Elnor from Picard

=/\=
Setting: SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Zocalo -> Medical Bay
Stardate: 35012.1030

Ya’Han followed “The Executioner” through twisting corridors, past the areas where kids were running and adults milled about, in total silence as various smells of cooking wafted around them.  The two women kept up their quick pace, up old-fashioned metal staircases, through swooshing doorways, past various Security Checkpoints.  

Until finally they reached a Medical Center, which would have made sense if they were with Satella, Ya’Han thought to herself.  With “The Executioner” this made less sense.  Something in The Executioner’s demeanor changed because Ya’Han heard the other woman mutter, “You know what to do.”

Ya’Han knew then why they were there; or at least who they were here to see as The Executioner walked off.  Looking around she saw the Bolian/Human Ambassador woman looking out over a medical bay, her arms folded as if in thought.  Someone notified Xana to her presence, and after a moment she turned her head and nodded at Ya’Han.  Turning fully around, she dropped her hands to her side and walked over to where Ya’Han was.  “I’m glad you’re here,” the Ambassador said in a soft voice.  “Is everyone ok?”

The Security officer blinked at that.  “Yes--”

“Adriana? Sonja?”

“They’re fine,” Ya’Han nodded.

“How’s D’Artagnan?”

Ya’Han glared at Xana; she never forgot who the woman was before her although many times she did wonder about the Bolian/Human’s sanity.  “The dog?” she asked skeptically.   When she continued to be stared at she said, “The dog is fine.”

Xana turned and walked back to the Medical Bay window, anticipating that Ya’Han would be following her.  Before them in the Operating Gallery it had been transformed into an assembly line of sorts, allowing the men, women, and teenagers to come in, be scanned by the medical professionals, and then punctured with an old-fashioned hypo.  “As “The Warrior” and “The Agent” we’ve already been innoculated,” Xana said softly.  “But it’s good to watch the others get ready.”

Ya’Han watched out of the corner of her eye, and noticed that others were walking by, figuring that Xana had slipped into her alter mirror’s persona and was hoping she too would do the same.  The Security Officer watched everyone line up; there was a methodicalness to the lining up.  Men in one line, women in the next, teenagers in the last line.  “They can’t inoculate children,” she said.  

“No, those whose bodies reject the inoculation, those that are too weak, will stay behind.  Everyone else will go to make the jump for The Confederacy.  To the next universe.  To explore new worlds--”

“--seek out new civilizations--”

“--and conquer them,” Xana finished off.  As Ya’Han stared at her the Ambassador continued on, “Of course you will go on, but I will not.”  

On a good day, Nylaan thought to herself, talking to the fast-talking Bolian/Human was confusing.  This was just exponentially more confusing.  Staring at the men, women, and teenagers who were lining up for battle, the Nylaan pieced it together.  It wasn’t Xana who wasn’t going but Xena.  “Surely you could talk to--”

“When people see me, they see “The Warrior” and nobody else,” Xana said quietly.  Looking back at the assembly line of people sighed and walked away with Ya’Han.  “The Warrior keeps the peace until the people leave.”

“The dying Warrior,” Ya’Han said quietly, noting the strangeness of having just had Xana having a second chance at life when her mirror now was dying.  

Xana nodded at that.  Looking around she found an empty closet and dragged Ya’Han in there.  Finally finding privacy she whispered.  “Look they’re starting a war.”

“I noticed,” Ya’Han whispered back. ”And were not in a position to fight back.  Why can’t you talk to them?”

The Ambassador sighed.  “I tried, trust me I did but they kept thinking I was Xena.  Plus diplomacy isn’t really valued here.  But if someone didn’t have a mirror here, then perhaps that would work.”  Leaning back against the cleaning supplies she sighed, “There was one other idea I had to stop going to war.”

Ya’Han waited for a moment and then shook her head.  “You do not want to start a mutiny,” the Nylaan warned.

“That’s a very negative word,” Xana parried back.  “I was going to suggest leading the people in an uprising, a loosely gathered process if you will, to resist their current systematic if authoritarian governmental control.”

The Security Officer exhaled at that.  “Say all the fancy words you want, that’s a mutiny.”

“I prefer: revolution.”

“What’s the difference?”

“When you win, revolution is lawfully preferred.  Mutiny is illegal,” Xana pointed out.

Ya’Han closed her eyes.  “Spoken like a true diplomat,” she muttered.  “Keep watch, I’ll find the others.”

=/\=
Sarah Albertini-Bond
USS ANUBIS
M17-A006: USS ANUBIS: Morningstar: 35012.1100
("Patience, Patience, Mon Capitaine")
##########
"Patience, Patience, Mon Capitaine"
Previous posts (ANU) "Skulking, Lying, and Dying" / (BAS) "A Quantum"
##########

"Never Give Up, Never Surrender."
- Captain Jason Nesmith

=====
Setting:  USS BASTET, Deck 1, Bridge
Stardate: 35012.1100

The moment the Native American stepped onto the BASTET's command deck, the eyes of both the First Officer and Captain fell upon him making Erik feel as if he had done something wrong. For a split second, Morningstar believed that he might be made to meet Ensign Zub Enel, the ship's Chief of Security once more, this time though in a much more professional manner.

"Can we help you, Captain Morningstar?" The tone of voice used by Commander Vallentine was stern but polite reminding the higher ranking officer that his authority onboard the BASTET was limited and that his being allowed on the bridge was nothing more than professional courtesy.

"Just been wandering the ship," the Native American stated, focusing his attention solely on the woman sitting in the central chair. "The BASTET is an amazing crew, made that much more special thanks to its crew."

"You obviously did not speak to *everyone*," Commander Valentine said, again her tone of voice saying much more than her words.

"What my First Officer is trying to say is that every ship in the fleet has at least one member of the crew who does not quite fit the expected norm," Iverson said, the woman as calm as she always was. Since the first time Erik had met Selene, he wondered if she had not some Vulcan blood running through her veins.

"On the ANUBIS, that crewmember would be my Chief Engineering Officer, Lt. Cmdr. Paquette," Captain Morningstar said, smiling ever so slightly as he did so.

"I would have expected you to list you First Officer in that list," Sarena said shooting a quick glare at Erik, one that he failed to see as his attention was solely on Selene.

Ignoring the comment, Morningstar kept his eyes locked on Iverson. "No, I just believe that being unlike any other officer is an unfortunate side-effect of being an Intel Liaison Officer onboard a ship operating under the banner of the NEW ALEXANDRIA complex. From what I have heard, your own ILO is quite *unique*."

"Unique is not how I would describe Lt. Gemma," Selene noted as she allowed a faint smile to flash on her face before she turned her gaze onto Serena. "Commander, you have the bridge. Captain Morningstar and I will be in my Ready Room."

=====
Setting:  USS BASTET, Deck 1, Captain's Ready Room
Stardate: 35012.1110

"I am sorry," the Native American offered as soon as the door closed behind him. "I would not have come to the bridge had I known that's would create such trouble."

"You did not create any trouble," Iverson said as she made her way to the food replicator. "Computer, a cup of Risian Tea with a dash of milk."

The Native American watched with piqued interest as the woman waited for the replicator to complete the task before seeing her return to him with an offering. "We are all on edge. I know that you and your people would like for the BASTET to already be in this other dimension, but the days we spend getting toORION may save us weeks if not months searching for your missing officers."

"Selene," Erik said raising his free hand to stop the woman from continuing. "I assure you that everyone from the ANUBIS who is here understands what must be done. Yes, we may be displaying some signs of impatience, but we know that this is the only way for us to proceed if we want to accomplish our goal as quickly as possible."

"Thank you for your understanding," Iverson offered.

"No," Morningstar quickly added. "Thank you. This is all possible thanks to you and your crew."

"We are stronger together."

--==(/\)==--
Francois Charette

Commanding Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC 18501

AND

Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA
M13-B004: USS BASTET: Gemma: 35012.1115 ("Intel Report")
=-=
"Intel Report"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Patience, Patience, Mon Capitaine" / (BAS) "A Quantum"]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 4
Stardate: 35012.1115

Gemma stepped out of the Astrometrics Lab just in time to run into Zub. The towering lizard-man appeared genuinely happy to see the woman. Maybe it was just him ignoring the fact that the ILO was more than she seemed. Maybe it was him believing that this mission might allow him to understand her better. Maybe it was just the way he greeted everyone he saw. Whatever the reason was for the Ensign's mood, the Lieutenant was not against it.

"Checking in on our new and improved scientist team?" Zub asked.

"Those two were made for one another," Gemma said trying not to roll her eyes or sigh as she spoke. "One is Asian, the other Shillian, and yet they behave as if they were twins. One starts a sentence and the other finishes it. They share ideas and theories without actually giving any details. Even Wimda had to take a step back, unsure as to how to deal with them."

A frown formed on the Voth's scaly forehead. It was strange to see Gemma referring to herself in the third person. That the woman standing in front of him was actually several people wrapped into a single body was equally as strange. Enel could imagine that many would find this troubling. Some might even be disturbed and scared by this realization, but he was not. Fear was not something he easily gave into, it was not his way. Learning about Gemma's multiple personalities was quite a shock, but in some ways it made him admire her even more. Not ready to openly admit this, the Chief of Security decided to change the subject. "As the BASTET's ILO, have you taken the time to meet our guests?"

"As the BASTET's ILO, it is best for me *not* to meet our guests," Gemma said. "I do not need to. You already met Captain Morningstar, you two sharing a few minutes in the arboretum. Lt. Cmdr. Maya is being taken care of by Lt. Mitshiba. Dr. Bruxa and Lt. Stark seem to be happy spending time with Dr. Andersson and Counselor Dima."

"That leaves the ANUBIS' XO, Cmdr. Shar'El," the Ensign said. "As I understand it, she also acts as that ship's ILO. That should give the two of you ample common ground to start a conversation."

"ILOs are not your typical kind of people," Gemma sighed. "We operate on a different level, and it is very rare to have two such officers on the same ship. It is ever rarer to have them working together. Let me just say this, we are not the 'friendly' sort."

"You are," Zub said without as much as a split second of hesitation. "Maybe the Voth definition of 'friendly' differs from that of other races, but I doubt it. I think you are just being too hard on yourself. There are aspects of your own personality that I believe you are not allowing yourself to see." The Ensign stopped talking. His words had not been meant to point attention to the multiple personalities the woman suffered from. All he had hoped to accomplish was to show Gemma that she was not being as objective as she could be about herself.  As he waited for any sort of reaction, the Chief of Security found himself clenching his three-fingered hands as if expecting a fight. He certainly did not want this to happen, but he had been warmed about Anya enough to be concerned about her making an appearance.

"Dealing with Cmdr. Shar'El is not that easy," Gemma said. Hearing the relaxed statement from the woman, Zub allowed his hands to release their grip. He had not planned on dealing with the Russian woman today, and things were looking up that he would not have to, at least for the time being.

"Would you like me to take care of that?" The Ensign asked. "I mean speak to her on your behalf."

"How else would you think I would want you to 'take care of her'?" The ILO inquired.

"I... I just did not want you to believe I was offering something that I was not." The giant lizard-man felt half his height as he looked at the woman standing in front of him.

"I think that would be a great idea," Gemma admitted.

"Great idea?" Zub half smiled. "Meaning my talking to her on your behalf?"

"Of course," the ILO confirmed. Although she found this little exchange rather amusing, Gemma did not allow any emotions to be displayed. This made it difficult for the Ensign to get a clear idea of what he was being asked to do, but the Lieutenant did not seem to be in a rush to clarify the situation. "lt. Cmdr. Shar'El is currently in the Mess Hall."

"I will go and check in on her right away." Ensign Enel wasted no time and headed for the stated location. As soon as the Voth was out of sigh, Gemma followed as only an ILO could. While he kept Shar'El busy, the BASTET's ILO would be able to enter the room without drawing any attention. This would allow her to perform the task given to her by Cmdr. Valentine -- keeping a close watch on the ANUBIS' ILO.

=-=
Rachel Jackie Johnson

Intel Operative
USS BASTET

[The fun is getting to wear multiple disguises and getting to explore multiple personalities and bring them to life. - Jenna Fischer]
M17-A007: USS ANUBIS: Shar'El: 35012.1130 ("Hidden Truth")
=-=
"Hidden Truth"
[the previous posts were (ANU) "Patience, Patience, Mon Capitaine" by Francois / (BAS) "Intel Report" by Rachel]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Mess Hall
Stardate: 35012.1130

Shar'El sat alone in one of the corners of the room, her back to the wall and her eyes wandering from table to table, from person to person, never staying on anyone for more than a few seconds. Being an ExO / ILO meant that she was always busy with various aspects of a ship's activities, supervising specific tasks, overlooking general processes while making sure that the crew, both as a single working force and as individuals, were performing at their best.  While on the BASTET though, the raven-haired woman found herself feeling useless, more so then she had ever thought possible, and that did not sit well with her, not at all.

It made perfect sense for Captain Iverson to set clear limits for the crew of the ANUBIS as they were guests and nothing more. No ship could properly function with two Captains or even two First Officers. The chain of command needed to remain intact to ensure the smooth working of the crew.  Erik had taken this opportunity to be a man, something that he rarely had the chance to do thanks to the constant and seemingly endless string of complications they faced. For once, he could just sit back and let someone else deal with the demands of command.  For Shar'El though, things were not that easy.

As the ANUBIS' ExO / ILO her time was split between two very distinct sets of responsibilities. If things were quiet on one side she could always turn her attention to the other, usually, this meant that she would focus more on the Intel aspects of her duties as things were never truly quiet there.  Shar'El could spend hours and even days sitting in the ICG looking over various reports from every quadrants, regions and planetary system, but here on the BASTET even that had been taken away from her.

The Ullian, without needing to use her telepathic abilities, knew that offering to help Commander Valentine in her duties as First Officer would be politely dismissed, as it should be. Shar'El had no right to impose herself in that role, even if only partially. This left the ExO / ILO with offering to help the BASTET's Intel Liaison Officer, Lt. Gemma, but this would be an equally unwelcome option although for completely different reasons.

Experience dictated that Commander Valentine would task the BASTET's ILO with keeping an eye on the ANUBIS' counterpart. The raven-haired woman knew of her own reputation and had the roles been reversed, the ExO / ILO would have opted for the same course of action.  What Sarena and Gemma failed to realized though was that Shar'El knew about the unique condition of the Lieutenant, likely better than anyone else on board this ship.

Although she had no direct involvement in the 'GAMMA' project, Shar'El had been with Admiral Koniki during some of the key moments granting her knowledge that few could claim to possess. Maybe this played a role in the head of NEW ALEXANDRIA assigning her to the position she now held, allowing the Admiral to keep the Ullian under control while at the same time distancing her from the project.

A sudden flood of memories washed over Shar'El as a new arrival made his way into the Mess Hall. The officer was a beast, both in size and general appearance, but then again members of the Voth race were never known for being small. Judging by the broadcasted memories of those in the room, Ensign Zub Enel had heard the respect and admiral of many, but what quickly caught the Ullian's attention was the reptilian's own memories of Gemma.  It seemed that the two of them were closer than she would have expected the BASTET's ILO to be with anyone.

From the corner of the room, Shar'El just observed the walking lizard as he scanned the room, likely searching for her, but the Ullian's attention was not truly on him. She understood her counterpart enough to know that he was here as a distraction, an oddity meant to divert attention away from what was truly happening. ILOs were very much like the old-style magicians, using whatever tricks they could to trick others into doing or not doing something.

Several minutes passed before the Ullian stood from her chair and made her way to another table, sitting down next to another officer without being invited.  "Hello Gamma," Shar'El said in a cold and unemotional voice.

"It's pronounced Gemma," the ILO sighed, clearly not at all happy that her presence and identity had been discovered so easily.

"If you say so," Shar'El conceded. In a way the woman was correct, the first had been her designation while the latter was the name she had taken on following her inability to remember anything about who or what she was. Looking into the eyes of the other ILO, the ExO / ILO recalled one of the specifics of the GAMMA project she had been exposed to, namely the significance of the acronym.

Genetic
Augmentation and
Manipulation using
Microscopic
Automatons

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS

Chief Medical Officer
USS BASTET
M13-B005: USS BASTET: Enel: 35012.1135 ("Double Trouble")
=-=
“Double Trouble”
Previous posts: (ANU) “Hidden Truth” / (BAS) “Intel Report”

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Mess Hall
Stardate: 35012.1135

Gripping his tray of replicated “Mixed greens, random. Gagh, small bowl. Chopsticks” in his three-fingered hands, tall and scaly Zub Enel watched as the black-haired ANUBIS ExO / ILO, Shar'El, changed tables to sit with the red-haired BASTET ILO, Gemma. The plan had been for him to talk to Lt. Commander Shar'El about working together with Gemma. He had not expected Gemma to be in the Mess Hall. Clearly, both women had changed the plan.

As they conversed, Zub watched their faces and body language. The guest ExO / ILO sat a bit stiffly. Gemma remained unreadable as ever. Memories of Gemma’s assassin Anya breaking his neck flooded in. He’d tricked her with a holographic image, but what Gemma could abruptly unleash on an ally made his bowl of gagh rattle on his tray.

As though hearing the rattle over the general Mess Hall din, the ANUBIS ExO / ILO turned her head and locked her black eyes on him. Unsmiling, she beckoned him to approach. He gripped his tray even tighter but complied.

As she watched him edge through other tables crowded with laughing crew, the Ullian said to Gemma, “You killed him?”

Gemma’s eyes narrowed. “Not me. Only he and I know that. Aren’t you forbidden to eavesdrop on crew memories?”

“Yes.”

“And yet?”

Shar'El shrugged. “It was like he was broadcasting that memory on all subspace channels. You can’t unhear a shout.”

Gemma’s face hardened around her blue eyes. “He volunteered to help me with an experiment.”

“We know where that road leads,” the ANUBIS ILO said as the SecTac arrived and peered down at her with golden eyes.

His tone was parental. “If you two kids don’t start getting along, I’ll smack your heads together.”

Shar'El gaped in surprise, a sense of indignation growing within her. “How dare a mere ensign speak to ….”

“Voth humor is a touch droll,” Gemma said by way of explanation.

The Ullian craned her neck backward to keep eye contact with the Voth. “Oh, I see. ‘You can't fight in here! This is the War Room!’” (1)

The scaly face so far above her changed from bright-eyed amusement to confusion. Mocha-brown scales tinged pink. Downy feathers visible only up close stirred like neck hair rising.

“Never mind,” she said, miffed her clever riposte had bounced off his cultural ignorance. “Sit. You’re impossibly tall.”

“Thank you, sir.”

He settled into the seat slightly sideways and stretched his long legs behind Gemma’s chair. Enel grabbed the chopsticks and tapped the bowl to set the gagh stirring again. He glanced into the ExO coal black eyes, “Welcome aboard, sir.”

The ExO / ILO rolled her eyes, “Your part in this drama was to sound me out about Gemma. At least **you** have something to do onboard.”

The Voth let a shiny black serpent worm squirm between his chopsticks as he studied the guest ILO’s face. He guessed she was pretty, by humanoid standards, Terran except for her strange black eyes. She gave off a sharp scent not in the usual musky range of Terran sweat, more acidic like heightened agitation even though she acted completely calm. “Commander, were you and Lt. Gemma fighting over who is going to do what we get to ORION?”

“Filden gagh,” the ExO / ILO observed as she ignored his question.

“We weren’t fighting,” Gemma said. “Just reaffirming mutual dislike.”

The Security officer chewed the worm without making crunching sounds. Once his mouth was clear he picked up another squirming worm. “So you two know each other.”

“From way back,” said Shar’El. She pointed a finger like a dagger at the BASTET ILO. “From **her** beginning.”

As he chewed, he kept a watch on Gemma’s hair for any change. Her coppery ringlets hung same as always. Zub Enel admired her grip on her emotions under the guest ILO’s vitriol.

He asked the Terran with black eyes, “May I assume, Commander, when we arrive at ORION, one of our first duties will be to ascertain that none of your missing crew has returned to this dimension before we shift into the other one we plan to visit?”

The ANUBIS ExO / ILO scoffed. “You make assumptions well above your pay grade, Ensign.”

“Yes, sir,” the lizard man said in a respectful tone. His face remained thoughtful as he ate his gagh. It was clear to her he had not dropped the subject. She scowled at him and jabbed a finger toward his broad chest, “I’ve been on ORION. You haven’t. Wherever my crew is, **I** will decide how to find them. Not the other way around!”

Gemma cut in, “He still has a point. Some or all of them might have returned to ORION. If they can’t communicate with us, they could be used against us if we blindly pop into a strange dimension and upset whatever apple cart is there.”

Shar’El glared at the red-headed ILO for defending the Voth. She let out a sigh. "I would prefer it if we were doing something useful,” she explained. “There’s a robot army missing. That can’t bode well for the future. Where are they? We have shuttles popping in and out of a dimension. What’s their cargo? People? Drugs? Weapons? There’s crew missing in an economy based on slavery. Yet, I’m listening to a worm eating man ask about basic search protocols.”

Gemma gazed at her, her expression remote.

The Voth showed a stunning bit of nerve by speaking again. “We have brilliant people from two starships. What if we all pool what we know and don’t know, come up with a Plan A and B for these missing persons.”

“Sure,” Shar’El said loudly, hugging herself. “And make wild guesses at Plans C , D, and E when A and B go down the toilet.”

As silence stretched, the Voth finished his gagh. Gemma said, “If you’re serious, Commander Shar’El, I’ll ask our ExO and CO about starting coordinated modeling of arrival and search scenarios. Are you’re willing to ask Captain Morningstar to assign all his crew to participate?”

The Ullian stared silently at Admiral Koniki’s red-headed project.

Gemma added, “You’ll have something useful to do. I can help you find Intel on that missing army.”

The ANUBIS ExO / ILO stood. “I will consider these suggestions.” She wheeled and left the Mess Hall.

Zub had picked at his greens with his chopsticks during the exchange.  He held up a bright green leaf with purple veins. He asked Gemma, “Will she work with you?”

Gemma stood. “Does a woodchuck chuck wood?” (2)

The ensign watched her leave while he mulled the possible meanings of her reply.

=-=
David Michael Inverso

Chief Security and Tactical Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977

“Nothing goes over my head. My reflexes are too fast. I would catch it.”
 - Drax the Destroyer - Guardians of the Galaxy
M17-A008: USS ANUBIS: Maya: 35012.1145 ("The Scientific Approach")
---
"The Scientific Approach"
(Previous Posts: (ANU) "Hidden Truth" / (BAS) "Double Trouble")
---

Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 4, Astrometrics Lab  
Stardate: 35012.1145

The task: to find a way for the USS BASTET and its crew to reach ORION and perform a dimensional jump without drawing any sort of attention. Had the planet been some sort of distant and uninhabited world, this would not have been an issue, but as it was the standard for missions involving the crew of the USS ANUBIS, things were not that simple.

"I have been thinking about so many different things that I have actually lost track of some of the more basic starting details," Maya admitted. "Could you please remind me as to how the BASTET uses the Dimensional and Temporal Drives to cloak the ship?"

"No problem," Mitshiba acknowledged with a smile, welcoming the opportunity to step back from their research. Following the many hours the two scientists had gone through in search of a solution to their dilemma, the Asian woman understood perfectly how someone unaccustomed to the technology might lose track of how the process of camouflaging the BASTET unfolded. "By themselves, the Temporal and Dimensional Drives are unable to 'hide' the ship as far as sensors operating within the same parameters. So, in order to circumvent this weakness, we use the properties of one drive to offset the shortcomings of the other. The Dimensional drive takes care of hiding the ship within the visual spectrum and from temporal sensors while the temporal drive takes care of making the ship invisible to sensors including those searching for various anomalies including dimensional ones. The problem is that both drives require the ship to not be moving through physical space, which is required for us to reach ORION."

Maya sighed as a faint smile formed on her lips. "You do not realize how useful simple devices such as the Cloaking Armour of the USS ANUBIS or the Cloaking Device onboard the USS HATHOR are to the outcome of a mission until you find yourself in a situation where you do not have access to them or any sort of equipment that can duplicate their specific properties. That said, I understand that there is nothing simple about any of the cloaking systems I mentioned as they are quite mechanically and scientifically demanding, which of course only contributes to them not being so easily replaced."

"You do not know what you have until you lose it," Misaki said using the Terran idiom to summarize the lengthy explanation given by the Shillian. "Unfortunately, this is not helping us solve our problem..." the voice of the Asian woman trailed into silence instantly piquing the interest of her fellow scientist.

"Is everything all right? Did you think of something?"

Misaki smiled. It was refreshing to have Maya be so 'on point' with her questions, the Shillian usually preferring a much wordier approach to anything she did.

"Our problem is that we cannot use the Dimensional and Temporal Drives while the BASTET is moving in physical space," Misaki restated before offering some insight into her thoughts. "If the mountain will not come to Muhammad, then Muhammad must go to the mountain."

"Who is Muhammad?" The Shillian was visibly confused and troubled. "Why does going to this mountain important to our mission?"

"It is nothing more than a Terran expression," Aki clarified. "It refers to a train of thought where one cannot reach an intended destination or goal, maybe a way to bring it to the person can be found." It was clear to see that the Lieutenant was onto something as she called up a holographic image of the ORION star system.  "We tend to think of space, especially that around a planetary body, to be static, unmoving, but the moment you take into account the orbit around a sun and the trajectory of that same sun through the galaxy, you quickly realize that everything *moves*, even if our perception says otherwise."

"You want to have the BASTET, while under the camouflage of the Temporal and Dimensional Drives, to wait ahead in the orbital trajectory of planet allowing us to sneak by all of the sensors and defenses. Once the ship is where it needs to be, we could engage a dimensional jump without drawing any attention. Brilliant! The calculations to makes this happen are going to be quite extensive and may require our calling upon several others, but I do believe that your plan will work."

"I will need to pass this idea by Commander Valentine and Captain Iverson first, but if you voice your support, I do not see why they would oppose it."

"What are we waiting for?" Maya said. "Let us head to the bridge and speak to your Captain and First Officer.

---
Non-Mission Message:
This will allow the BASTET to reach ORION without being detected, but it will provide the crew with a very small window of opportunity to scan the planet for signs of the missing officers, something that I am sure Ensign Enel will point out as soon as Maya gives him the chance to put a word in.

Keep up with the great posting everyone, and remember, stay inside and stay safe.

---
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)
M13-B006: USS BASTET: Iverson: 35012.1330 ("The Plan, Part 1")
---
"The Plan, Part 1"
(Previous Post: (ANU) "Double Trouble" / (BAS) "The Scientific Approach")
---

Setting: USS BASTET, Observation Lounge
Stardate: 35012.1330

It was nice and weird to see this unlikely gathering of officers. On one side of the table sat the First Officer and Chief Science Officer of the USS BASTET while their counterparts from the USS ANUBIS sat on the opposite on the other side directly across them. Captain Iverson, as required by protocol sat at the head of the table while Captain Morningstar, as the honoured guest, sat opposite her at the other end of the conference table.

The lengthy and detailed presentation from the team of scientist comprised of Lieutenant Commander Maya and Lieutenant Mitshiba ended with everyone else doing their best to process all of the information that had been provided.

"Is she always like that?" Commander Valentine inquired of the First Officer of the ANUBIS.

Commander Shar'El grinned as she glanced in the direction of the Shillian woman. "This was one of her shortest reports. I suspect that it was thanks to Lieutenant Mitshiba who kept bringing her back on topic. Maya may be longwinded, but she knows her stuff."

"Captain Morningstar? What are your thoughts?" Selene asked of the man sitting at the other hand of the table. Likely because both he and Commander Shar'El were used to the style of presentations and reports given by their Chief Science Officer, the two senior officers did not appear overly taken aback by the latest lengthy and overly detailed offering.

"The plan makes sense," Erik nodded pensively before looking over at his First Officer. "The final decision is yours of course as this is *your* ship, but I would like to offer some additional information if I may."

"Additional information?" Commander Valentine quizzically repeated easily picking up on the wordless exchange between the two command-level officers of the USS ANUBIS.

"I suspect that your Intel Liaison Officer has been too preoccupied with other matters to keep up with the reports from the RIGEL star system, ORION and more specifically the Orion Syndicate," Shar'El offered. "The plan presented by our Chief Science Officers is good, there is no debating that, but it ignores a major aspect of the area we are heading to. The Orion Syndicate is the one in charge now."

"Admiral Koniki sent the USS SATET to gather intel on the situation some time ago, and unfortunately the vessel was lost during the escalating conflict between the Klingon forces led by Is'toQ and the Romulan-aided-Syndicate which now stands as the official government."

"Wait, what?" Misaki gasped. "The Orion Syndicate is a legitimate government?"

"Legitimate government may be stretching the official definition," Commander Shar'El said as she leaned forward, her elbows now resting on the table. "Let us just agree that they are the ones in charge of that area of space for the time being."

"This is going to make things a lot more complicated," Commander Valentine sighed, now wondering if they should not reevaluate their current mission.

"Complicated would be an understatement," the First Officer of the USS ANUBIS added, "but not for our current mission. The increased tension between the Romulan Star Empire, the Klingons and the Federation may actually play in our favour at this point in time. Following the heavy losses suffered by the Syndicate during the Battle of ALCYONUS, a sizeable portion of their operational fleet was destroyed. The chaos of having what is left of their fleet and personnel returning to their home base should provide us with ample cover to reach ORION undetected. Also," Shar'El continued but not before pausing for a second or so to drive her point even further home, "as much as the Syndicate and the Tal'Shiar may hate to admit it, NEW ALEXANDRIA still has several operatives inside both organizations. Those operatives could help us reach our destination without having to resort to a complete scientific 'tour-de-force' as suggested by Lieutenant Mitshiba and Lieutenant Commander Maya."

Silence spread through the Observation Lounge as people looked at those around them trying to get a better idea of the emotional state and the perceived impact of what had been added to the scientific presentation given by the Shillian and Asian women.

"What did you have in mind?" Selene eventually asked of Shar’El, curious to see what 'Plan B' would require of them.

"First, I would need to speak to your Intel Liaison Officer, Lieutenant Gamma, sorry, Lieutenant Gemma. After that, I would also recommend that you fill in all of the bridge positions with experienced officers. I noticed that your Operations station is not officially assigned and with the permission of Captain Morningstar, I would like to offer the services of Lieutenant Stark for that role."

Erik nodded his head, knowing better than to disagree with his First Officer in times like these.

"All right," Captain Iverson agreed. "Commander Valentine, please arrange for Gemma to meet with Shar'El and have Lieutenant Stark report to the bridge. I think it would be best for all of us to put all available assets to work if we are to even come close to completing this 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)
M13-B007: USS BASTET: Gemma: 35012.1400 ("The Plan, Part 2")
=-=
"The Plan, Part 2"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Scientific Approach" / (BAS) "The Plan, Part 2"]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 35012.1400

Gemma sat on the main examination bed. Her eyes were fixated on the wall display which showed her to be in perfect health. Normally, the ILO would find this reassuring as it indicated that everything was as it should be. Today though, following the conversation with the ANUBIS' ILO, she felt troubled by what she saw.

"There is absolutely nothing wrong with you," Doctor Andersson reported. "Physically," the CMO added in a whispered voice. The CMO wanted to make sure that Gemma understood the parameters of her diagnosis.

"You are truly a remarkable woman," Doctor Bruxa chimed in. The more she read the patient's medical history, the more interested she became. "Your test results are exactly the same as they were the time before, or the time before that. I think even ANI can't pull that off, and she's an android."

"Gemma is unique, in many ways," Sofia said with a grin.

When Shar'El entered the room, she instantly focused on the ANUBIS' CMO. "I am glad that you are finding your time here educational."

"Commander Shar'El," Sofia said greeting the woman. "What brings you to my Sickbay?"

"Actually, I am here to speak to Gemma. That is, if you are done with her."

"She is," the ILO rapidly stated as she jumped off the examination bed. Without saying anything more the two ILOs exited Sickbay. Doctor Andersson had several questions, but it was clear that she would not get any answers at this time.

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 5, Corridor outside Sickbay
Stardate: 35012.1410

Looking straight at the BASTET's ILO, Shar'El spoke first. "I see that your social skills have not improved."

Gemma glared at the other ILO. There was something about that woman she despised. It was the Russian Assassin that literally stepped up to confront the other woman. "I know that you are a Ullian. That means you can read memories. So, look at what I am remembering. It would not take me much to do the same to you."

"Relax Anya," Shar'El said in a dismissive manner. "Although I cannot read *your* memories, I know what you are trying to do. Whatever brutal killing you are trying to make me see will not change anything. I know you, and I am not scared of you." The ILO seemed perfectly sure of herself, but that was not surprised Gemma. The fact that the Russian woman was replaced by Gemma proved to be the real mystery. "Now, I believe that the rest of our discussion should take place in a more private setting."

Following what had just transpired, Gemma saw no reason to oppose Shar'El's suggestion. In fact, the BASTET's ILO agreed fearing that something even more unexpected might come to be.

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 2, Gemma's Quarters
Stardate: 35012.1420

The two ILOs entered, Gemma stopping right after walking in while Shar'El went exploring.

"You don't spend a lot of time in here, do you?" Shar'El asked. The Ullian seemed unconcerned about investigating Gemma's private quarters without permission."

"I'm busy," Gemma snapped. As much as she hated seeing Shar'El snooping around, the redhead could not bring herself to do anything against it.

"Relax," the ANUBIS' ILO said. "I was not trying to say that you were doing something wrong. Being busy is part of our lives. In your case though, you have multiple lives that keep you away from here."

"How is it that you know so much about me?"

"You mean how is it that I know more about you than you do?" Shar'El was visibly enjoying the way this conversation was unfolding.  Gemma could do nothing but listen and watch as the other ILO looked into every corner of her quarters. "Alright," the guest said as she rejoined the quarter's owner. "We have waisted enough time. I need to talk to Vasna."

Confusion swashed over Gemma's mind as she found herself mentally pushed out of the way. Thanks to the efforts of Ensign Enel, the ILO had begun to understand her multiple personality issues a little more. There was still a great deal for her to learn but she had begun to grasp how each identity took over. At least, until now, that was what she believed. What knowledge did Shar'El possess to allow her to summon a personality like this?
The BASTET's ILO could do nothing but listen to the conversation. A conversation that was taking place between Shar'El and Vasna. While in this mental void, she could hear other voices, all of which were as familiar as her own.

"This is truly amazing." It was the Uxali scientist who voiced her wonderment. "We never thought it possible that some external force could force one of us out."

"This opens up a whole new worlds of possibilities," the blonde-hair Edo added. Lireen, being the explorer that she was, always looked upon things with a hefty dose of excitement.

It was a Germanic accent that followed. "You two are pathetic. This is not a *good* thing. Shar'El pushed Anya back and did the same to Gemma. If that was not enough, she was able to call someone else up. This without the slightest effort. This is not good, not good at all."

"We must have faith," theOltharian Priestess offered next. "If Shar'El had wanted to hurt any of us, Vasna would not be here talking to her. We have to trust that the ANUBIS' ILO is doing this to help us all."

"Trust is not something easily given," Gwenvel said speaking from experience. "Shar'El knows too much to be so easily trusted.  There are no doubts about it, she is hiding something."

"She's an ILO," Gemma said next. "We are always hiding something from someone."

=-=
Rachel Jackie Johnson

Intel Operative
USS BASTET

[The fun is getting to wear multiple disguises and getting to explore multiple personalities and bring them to life. - Jenna Fischer]
M17-A009: USS ANUBIS: Stark: 35012.1400 ("The Plan, Part 3")
"The Plan, Part 3"
[previous (ANU) "The Scientific Approach" / (BAS) "The Plan, Part 2"]

[/\]
Setting: USS BASTET, Turbolift en route to the Bridge
Stardate: 35012.1400

He was nervous and the main reason for that was that Jayson had no idea why he had been called to the bridge. Being summoned to see your Commanding Officer was bad enough but being called to see the Captain of another ship could only mean trouble. The question was: what could he have done?

Satella and he went to Sickbay to visit the BASTET's resident CMO and CNS. There was nothing wrong about doing this as the personnel and location had not been identified as being off-limits. So why was he asked to go and speak to Captain Iverson? Belter still, why had Bruxa not been called along with him?

[/\]
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35012.1405

Jayson stepped onto the bridge to find the towering lizard-man standing there as if waiting for him. There was something about the way the Ensign held his three-fingered hands that reminded Stark of talons. The image of a bird of prey ripping its target to shreds filled the man's thoughts so much so that he hesitated to take another step forward. If that was not enough, the OPS Officer of the ANUBIS noticed the Caitian moving closer.

All he could do was stand there, frozen and uncertain as to what to do next, if anything as his eyes bounced from one giant to the other and back. Jayson actually found himself longing for the days when the only giant he had to deal with was the pacifist Oltharian. It only took a few seconds for A'Janni to reach Stark, but those seconds seemed to take an eternity to pass.

"The Captains are in the Ready Room waiting for you," A'Janni said inviting the man to step further onto the command deck.

"The *Captains*?" Jayson repeated as he looked up at the imposing reptilian figure partially blocking his way. After receiving a nod to confirm what had been said, the Human man reluctantly accepted the offer and followed the felinoid giant never truly taking his eyes off the reptilian one, just in case.

The Caitian used the door chime to announce the man's arrival and as soon as the door opened, A'Janni ushered Jayson in. When the doors closed between them, the BASTET's FCO turned to look at the Chief of Security with a puzzled expression.

"That was mean," A'Janni said grinning.

"I did nothing," Enel said in his defense. "I was just standing there when the doors to the turbolift opened and he walked out. I picked up an odd odor from him and wanted to make sure that he was not having some sort of medical issue that would require my calling Doctor Andersson here to respond to an emergency."

"You scared the life out of him," A'Janni pointed out. "The worst part of it all is that I think you enjoyed it. I am starting to wonder if maybe you have not been spending a little too much time with Gemma.You are picking up some of her inter-personal mannerisms."

Zub just looked back at A'Janni for a few seconds before returning to the Security and Tactical station.

[/\]
Setting: USS BASTET, Captain's Ready Room
Stardate: 35012.1410

Jayson just stood there feeling the eyes of the two Captains on him.

"Relax Jayson," Captain Morningstar said trying to reassure the visibly nervous man. "We need your help."

"My help?"

"It was strongly recommended that all of our stations be manned by experienced officers," Captain Iverson explained. "Right now, the BASTET does not have the services of a Chief of Operations. Captain Morningstar says that you would be happy to lend us a hand and ensure that our arrival to ORION is as uneventful as possible."

"You want me to man the Operations' station of the BASTET?"  It was a bad habit of Jayson to repeat things, especially when he was nervous.

"Jayson," Morningstar said with authority. "Not exactly the best way for you to make a good first professional impression."

"My apologies Captain," Stark said, sounding as official as he could making him feel like a first-year cadet all over. "The opportunity was just an unexpected one. It would be my honor to fill in as the BASTET's Chief of Operations for as long as it is deemed necessary."

"Good," Captain Iverson noted. "Due to the presence of a Dimensional Jump Drive and a Temporal Drive aboard the BASTET, some of the systems' readouts will be different, but I am sure that Lt. A'Janni and Ensign Enel will be happy to answer any questions you might have."

Jayson caught himself just as he was about to repeat the names of the two officers. This might prove to be a more challenging opportunity than he had initially expected, not that he had been given that much time to think about any of this.

"Commander Shar'El will be coordinating with you as ILO," Morningstar clarified. "This may be a little difficult for you to get used to at first, but keep in mind that as long as you operate as the BASTET's Chief of Operations, Captain Iverson and Commander Valentine are the ones you need to listen to."

"There will be no issues, Captain," Jayson said directing his reassurance to the woman sitting on the other side of the desk.

"Glad to hear it," Iverson said. "We are currently waiting for Commander Shar'El and Lieutenant Gemma to get their plans worked out. In the meantime, you can start getting yourself familiarized with the BASTET and its systems."

"Yes Sir."  Jayson turned around and headed for the door, pausing for a split second before he walked close enough to have it open. He wondered with some level of apprehension as to how the Voth and Caitian would react to his appointment, as temporary as it might be, to the position of OPS Officer of the USS BASTET. 

[/\]
Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant Jayson Stark [Access Character BIO for Jayson Stark]
Chief of Operations
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M13-B008: USS BASTET: Andersson: 35012.1430 ("A Lovely Chat")
=-=
"A Lovely Chat"
[the previous post was (ANU) "The Plan, Part 3" by Jayson/ (BAS) "The Plan, Part 2" by Rachel]
=-=
 
Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 35012.1430

"It was nice to see Satella," the joint Trill said as she looked around the once again vacant Sickbay.
 
"Yes, it was," Sofia agreed. "There was something different about her though. Maybe it is just due to the fact that we have not seen each other for a while, but I could not shake the feeling that there was something unusual."
 
"You mean the way she kept looking at Jayson?" The CNS said, doing her best to hide her smile.
 
"What? No! Satella is not that kind of person," Sofia quickly said in defense of her fellow Doctor. "Jayson and Ya'Han are an item. It took them long enough to realize just how much each admired and loved the other, so I doubt that either one of them would stray or allow anyone to get between them."
 
"If you say so," Nic shrugged. "All I can say is that after having experienced love from so many different perspectives and lifetimes, there are signs that cannot be ignored. Satella was not just looking at Jayson, she was swooning over him."
 
Sofia was about to state that Nicole had to be wrong, but quickly realizing that she would lose such an argument due to the simple fact that the joined Trill's experience in much matters far exceeded that of the Human woman, the Doctor decided on another angel. "I am sure that there is a perfectly logical explanation for what you saw. I just cannot believe that Satella would willingly become 'the other woman', nor can I accept that Jayson would allow her or anyone else to get between him and Ya'Han."
 
"You do know the crew of the ANUBIS better than I do," Dima said knowing very well that those simple few words would get Andersson to think a little more closely about what had just been proposed.
 
"Well, I cannot claim to know that all that much. I was never officially a member of the ANUBIS' crew. I did spend some time with them while in PARIS and did see them in action. I know that Jayson is a loyal and dedicated officer while Ya'Han is as fierce as a Chief of Security should be. Anyone wronging her would put their lives on the line."
 
Nic moved closer to Sofia before adding. "Then this leaves us with only one of two possibilities. Either Jayson and Satella have a death wish or something happened between Jayson and Ya'Han." The Trill paused for a moment as she caressed the cheek of the blonde woman standing right in front of her. "After several lifetimes I can tell you this, life has a way of sending people into completely unexpected situations. Sometimes these situations turn out for the best, other times they end up shattering things that were never meant to be damaged, let alone broken."
 
Sofia wanted to argue the point made, she wanted to defend Jayson and Ya'Han, but in the end, the CMO found herself more carefully reviewing what she could recall of the interaction between their two guests. She had picked up on something between them but had elected to brush it aside, but after speaking with Dima, Andersson found it impossible to dismiss the possibility presented by her better half.
 
If something did happen to the relationship between Jayson and Ya'Han, how would it come to impact on their new mission? More importantly, would whatever Satella felt for him get in the way of what they would be called to do during the unexpected trials they would most certainly encounter?

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Chief Medical Officer
USS BASTET

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M13-B009: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: 35012.1500 ("New Friends")
"New Friends"
Previous posts: (ANU) "The Plan, Part 3" & (BAS) "A Lovely Chat"

///^\\\  
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35012.1500

Aki returned to the bridge feeling both energized and exhausted. Working with Lt. Cmdr. Maya was an eye-opening experience, the Shillian displaying on repeated occasions the extent of her knowledge and understanding of the universe as a whole. The Asian woman was thrilled to be able to now count the other CSciO as a friend and fellow researcher, which also explained why she needed to return to the bridge if only to put some distance between them.

Maya was a great person and an even greater scientist, but her methodology and style of work required a great deal of energy from those around her. As much as Aki had done her best to keep up, the Asian woman needed to take a break, even if only for a few minutes.

"Where is Lt. Cmdr. Maya?" Ensign Enel asked. As Chief of Security, it was his responsibility to know where everyone was at all times. Since Aki had been unofficially given the task of keeping eyes on the Shillian, the question made perfect sense since they were no longer together.

"Maya is still in the Astrometrics Lab," Mitshiba replied. "The woman's appetite for scientific knowledge does appear to be endless, that or she just likes to be in a lab. I offered for us to take a break and go for a walk but she refused stating that she would rather do more research and stay in the lab."

"That is where she tends to spend the greater majority of her time when on the ANUBIS," Lt. Stark said surprising Aki who had not noticed the man standing at the Operations Station. "One advantage of that is we always know where to find her."

"Zub?" Aki asked of the Chief of Security in a whispered voice, her partially hidden finger indicating the target of her question as the man currently standing at the Operations Station.

"It is expected that things are going to be happening very quickly once we reach ORION. This prompted Captain Iverson to make a decision that would see all key stations on the BASTET be properly manned," the 7-foot-tall Voth explained while looking down to the puny looking 5'6" Asian woman standing next to him.

"Makes sense, and it is also kind of the scary," the CSciO noted to herself.

"Scary? Why do you believe that her decision is scary?" Zub Enel asked, uncertain as to what Mitshiba was referring to.

"Not her decision but rather the reasoning that led her to make it. Getting *to* ORION is supposed to be the easy part of this mission," Aki pointed out. "The first part of this mission is meant to see us get as close to that planet as possible without drawing any attention and jump to whatever dimension the members of the ANUBIS were taken to. That is where our problems were expected to start, not before, this for no other reason than we know nothing about this other dimension. Let us be honest about the situation, we are not even sure that the missing officers are going to be near our general vicinity once we get there. For all we know they could have been taken prisoner by some local hostile force and being made to endure pain and suffering the likes of which we are unable to imagine. That is not even taking account of the possibility that they might have run into another race capable of trans-dimensional travels the likes of the Masters or worse the Lokustaar."

The giant reptilian blinked his golden eyes several times before raising a hand and spreading his three fingers as wide as he could. "I think you spending a little bit of time away from Lt. Cmdr. Maya might prove to be a very good thing. I have never heard you be so pessimistic about anything."

"I do not know about that as I have not had the chance to be with anyone of you for any length of time," Lt. Stark added. "What I can say though is that he may be right based on the simple fact that you sounded a lot like Maya especially when she gets into one of her long-winded explanations."

Aki just stood there, her eyes bouncing from the Chief of Security to the Chief of Operations and back again. "I'm sorry. I did not mean to sound pessimistic about what we might encounter or even the state of your missing officers."

Jayson shrugged. "Believe it or not, the crew of the ANUBIS has gone through much worse. The big surprise would be finding Xana, Adriana, Sonja and Ya'Han just sitting on some beach waiting for us to arrive while enjoying a few drinks. Finding them in any sort of trouble is the unfortunate expectation that we all have come to accept."

"Trust me," A'Janni chimed in. "This crew is no stranger to trouble.

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant Misaki 'Aki' Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M17-A010: USS ANUBIS: Lopez: 35012.1500 ("Regrets")
-=-=-
"Regrets"
[Previous post: (ANU) "The Plan, Part 3" & (BAS) "New Friends"]
-=-=-

Setting:  SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Guest Quarters
Stardate: 35012.1500

Adriana sat in their room, alone, gently petting their new-found pet while thinking of what was, what is and what might be. All she wanted to do was to find Amanda, to finally bring the search for her missing twin sister to an end. Those thoughts haunted her, so much so that she often interacted with a hallucination of the woman in question, an mental projection that the Counselor knew very well was not real and yet she found herself missing it when, for one reason or another, the vision did not manifest itself.

As a Junior Ambassador to the Federation, Adriana Lopez easily convinced people that she was going to ORION on official business. The upheaval brought on by the rise of the Orion Syndicate to official power set the perfect foundation for her journey.  Going to that world was a calculated risk as the CNS suspected that the syndicate had a role to play in her sister's disappearance so many years ago. It was true that none of the information gathered clearly indicated a connection, but even Shar'El had to agree that there were too many mentions of the organization for it to be ignored.  Whatever reasoning she had used to justify her going there, it could never have prepared her for what happened next.

As bad as it was, being captured and tortured was the result of her actions and in some twisted way she accepted this. No one else needed to suffer for a lapse in judgement brought upon by her uncontrollable need to find out what happened to her sister. OF course, Satella would not have agreed with such an opinion and that thought made Adriana smile.

No matter how difficult things were, no matter how demanding or dangerous a situation proved to be, Lopez could always count on her friends and fellow shipmates to be there for her. Sometimes it was just to be there to listen to the Counselor's ramblings, but that was never the limit of their willingness to help. No matter the situation, no matter who the person in need was, the crew always came together to help. In many ways, they acted more like a family than anything else. Everyone played an important role in this strange family created out of necessity. Captain Morningstar and Commander Shar'El took on the respective roles of father and mother, doing their best to guide the others to be their very best in everything they did.

That particular thought made Adriana pause for an instant as she contemplated the idea that aside from Erik and Shar'El, everyone else she worked with could be looked upon as a sibling. As weird as that might have initially seemed to be, the concept proved to be a reassuring one for Lopez. In her search for a missing sister she had discovered a family that would stand by her through thick and thin, the proof of this being easily seen in Xana, Ya'Han and Sonja being here, wherever or whatever this place was.

D'Artagnan suddenly jump from her laps and rushed to the door, his tail wagging furiously. Adriana just smiled and watched as the small canine anxiously waited for the return of its other mistresses who wasted little time in granting the puppies' wish.

"What are we going to do about this?" Ya'Han asked of Xana as they walked in followed by Sonja. The redhead engineer was the first one to notice and acknowledge their furry greeting party.

"What happened?" Adriana asked while grinning at the sight of Sonja playing with their puppy, D'Artagnan displaying a joyfulness that she in a strange way relate to. He had been taken from his home and brought to this place only to be rescued by the three ladies near him. His story mirrored hers very closely as both were brought here against their will and endured harsh times before being rescued by the same people.

"We discovered something," Xana replied not giving any more details.

"Just the usual, nothing special," Sonja added. "It is just the end of life as we know it. Nothing that we have not had to deal with a thousand times before." Through her words, the Chief Engineer did not stop playing with the puppy who was not licking the woman's face in complete and absolute admiration.

"Are you serious?" The Counselor asked as she glanced at the two women in the middle of an intensive discussion before returning her attention onto the woman and her dog. "The end of life as we know it?!?"

"Sonja is exaggerating," the Bolian/Human Ambassador dismissed without even looking at the other two women. "We do have a situation that requires our immediate attention though."

"I have already figured out that it will be best if you leave this situation to Xana and Ya'Han," Sonja said. "Whatever solution they will agree upon, it will either involve a diplomatic or physical approach. Either way, you and I will be told what they need from us at that time. Getting involved in the discussion will only lead to frustration on everyone's part."

"That does not sound like you," Adriana said joining the woman on the ground to join her playing with D'Artagnan. "You have always been a person of action, so hearing you say that there is nothing to do but wait is very strange."

"Everything about this place is strange," Sonja pointed out. "My counterpart in this place is some kind of ruler, Xana's is some kind of ruthless warrior and Ya'Han's is a shadowing operative who is more dangerous than the woman we know and call friend. Right now, I need a moment to ground myself and little fur-ball here is just what the Doctor prescribed. As the Ship's Counselor, you of all people should see the benefits of finding a way to not let your darker or troubled thoughts get the better of you."

"He's a lucky puppy," Adriana said with a smile.

"How so?" The redhead asked.

"To have someone like you in his life," the CNS grinned.

"Ah, is someone jealous?" Sonja teased as she reached over and started petting Adriana's head.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Lieutenant JG Adriana Lopez [Access Character BIO for Adriana Lopez]
Ship's Counselor & Junior Ambassador
USS ANUBIS
M13-B010: USS BASTET: Enel: 35012.1510 ("Dogged")
=-=
“Dogged”
Previous posts: (ANU) “Regrets” / (BAS) "New Friends"

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35012.1510

At the Ops station, Jayson shrugged. "Believe it or not, the crew of the ANUBIS has gone through much worse. The big surprise would be finding Xana, Adriana, Sonja and Ya'Han just sitting on some beach waiting for us to arrive while enjoying a few drinks. Finding them in any sort of trouble is the unfortunate expectation that we all have come to accept."

"Trust me," A'Janni chimed in. "This crew is no stranger to trouble.”

Lt. Mitshiba smiled at the three officers. She said to the new Ops officer, “At least I won’t break my neck looking up at you, Lt. Stark.”

“Jayson, please,” he said to the CSciO. After he glanced around the Bridge, he added, “When off duty.”

“Aki.” She smiled again before she returned to her station.

The Voth said to Jayson, “Zub. Off duty, of course.”

A’Janni locked the Ops Officer with his one white-eye. “Newt.”

Jayson looked skeptically at the felinoid. “Your given name is Newton?”

The Flight Control Officer pointed a claw at the Ops console. “I meant to say that I assume you are ’Newt’ to Dimensional and Temporal Jump protocols.”

Jayson smiled and raised his hands palm out. “I get it. The ‘new guy’ routine. Very funny. But even though I don’t know the Jump protocols yet, I am an experienced Operations Officer.” He waved his hand at the Ops console screen checkered with colorful graphs and inching columns of data. “ANUBIS has probably twice the systems BASTET does. Your Ops is nowhere near as complicated.”

Lt. A’Janni pointed his furry feline face up at the tall, scaly Voth. “He doesn’t like our telegraph key. It’s new.”

Jayson chuckled. “Relax. Really. I can be trusted with Ops. I mean,” he glanced at the display for an example of what he was on top of. He noticed a small square blinking yellow. He stooped to peer at it. “For instance, the Dorsal Optonic Array is showing some fragmentation. That’ll distort any display of the aft port quadrant. Probably instrument noise. I’ll just call the Chief Engineer and have it defragged.” He reached toward his comm badge.

Zub Enel put up a three-fingered hand palm out, his golden gaze on the Ops console, “You said ‘probably’.” He approached the Tactical station.

A’Janni said to Jayson, “Gemma fills in as Chief Engineer. She is highly capable so it is unlikely she would let any system drift off spec.”

Jayson followed the Caitian to Zub’s Tactical station. “We rarely get glitches on the ANUBIS, but they happen.” The two officers didn’t appear to hear. They stood bent with their faces hovering over the Tactical console.

Ensign Enel asked without looking away from the display, “Whereabouts aft would fragmentation distort a scan?”

Jayson shrugged. “Port. Above the flight line, a little.”

The big lizard’s claw clicked on the display as he zoomed in on the area. “There appears to be a faint distortion there.”

The FCO trained his one eye on the spot indicated by the SecTac’s claw. “That does look like a glitch.”

Jayson frowned. His impromptu demonstration of Ops prowess was being ignored. “As I said, Engineering needs to defrag the Dorsal Optonic Array.”

“Perhaps it is a glitch. What if … ,” Zeb Enel said. He reached toward the console controls.

The Caitian’s fur rose along his arms. He grabbed the SecTac’s scaly wrist. “Wait. Let’s be careful. No active scans yet. Let’s get Gemma to check out that array.” He tapped his comm. “Bridge to Engineering.”

=/\= Yes? =/\=


=-=

Aki joined the other senior officers crowded around the SecTac station. She had to pat Zub and A’Janni on the back to get them to step aside so she could see. The blackness of space was crossed by stars, most of them bright orange, streaming backward to convene at a point. Above and left of the vanishing point sat a tight area of faint pixilation.

Gemma’s soft contralto stated, =/\= Engineering to Bridge. =/\=

Jayson got to his comm first. “Bridge. Lt. Stark.”

=/\= The Dorsal Optonic Array is and has been 100% functional. All related systems are at 100%. Have you run an Ops console diagnostic? =/\=

“Affirmative,” Jayson said. “It is functioning perfectly. The fragmentation warning is still showing.”

=/\= It’s not the equipment. Engineering out. =/\=

Jayson shook his head. “So, what could make the Ops station think it has a problem? Something back aft?”

A’Janni rubbed a clawed finger just behind his whiskers while thinking. He stepped over to the Flight Control station. “Until and unless we learn differently, we should all return to our stations and treat this as an unidentified ship.”

Aki returned to Science. Jayson to the Ops station. He said, “Someone is cloaked and shadowing us? Who’s out here?”

Zub said, “We are nearing the ORION system.”

By the time the turbolift door hissed shut, Lt. Gemma had entered the Bridge. “The Romulans, Klingons and Orion Syndicate have capital ships here. There are independent smugglers operating as well.” Clearly, the ILO had heard part of the discussion. “If you think we picked up a cloaked ship, you need to alert the CO and ExO.”

A’Janni’s gaze swept the red-headed intel officer. For a changeable as she was, she would never turn back into Sheetora, a queen, a mother, a diplomat, a fighter he had loved before she died, twice.

He said gruffly to hide a bitter taste, “If this glitch is a cloaked ship, it’s not Klingon or Romulan. They could sneak up and rap on our hull without being detected. If this is a cloaked ship, I would guess it’s using a more local, homegrown cloaking device that is leaking energy into space.”

Zub circled his claw around the tiny distortion. “Can we play back the last hour of that aft area?”

Aki brightened at the Science station. “Yes we can.”

From Ops Jayson eyed everyone busy at their duty stations. “I caused a lot of fuss over a glitch, huh?”

“Yes,” A’Janni said. “But, we needed something to do.”

“Okay,” Aki said. “On the main viewer. Looking aft, the last hour compressed to two minutes.”

The main screen came alive to show stars moving leisurely toward the aft vanishing point. The little fuzzy spot maintained approximately the same position. The passage of stars suddenly sped up marking the transition to Warp 8. The spot disappeared for a while and then reappeared, slowly expanded from a single point to approximately the same size again. The playback froze and ended.

Jayson said, “That sure looked like something was following us. We lost it by speeding away, but then it caught back up again.”

Zub added, “Caught up to Warp 8 and maintained Warp 8.”

Gemma tapped her comm. “Captain and ExO to the Bridge.”

=-=
David Michael Inverso

Chief Security and Tactical Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977

“Strategy requires thought, tactics require observation.”
— Max Euwe
M17-A011: USS ANUBIS: Bonviva: 35012.1545 ("Living or Alive")
“Living or Alive”
Previous posts: (ANU) “Regrets” / (BAS) "Dogged"

=/\=
Are you living
Or
Are you just alive?
--Trixie Mattel

=/\=
Setting:  SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Guest Quarters
Stardate: 35012.1545

Adriana was watching D’Artagnan play when Xana came over and gently sat down next to her. Exhausted, emotionally as well as physically, watching the dog was the best she could do.  

“You’ve been through a lot,” Xana said quietly.  

The Counselor nodded, her already dry throat closing up as she thought about that.  There had been so much rawness and anger in the time leading up to her crewmates finding her. 

“You had to learn to live without what you’ve known.”

As she listened to the Italian accented Bolian Ambassador, on one level the Counselor supposed that the Ambassador was talking about being here in this strange flipped about universe.  But for some reason listening to the lyrical voice of her friend, Adriana wasn’t thinking about being here... she thought about her twin.  For so long she had to live without Amanda... so many birthdays, milestones, and all the in between moments.  

Without Amanda really being there with her.

Adriana slid down on her side, curling up as she listened to Xana talk to softly.  At one point, the puppy came up and snuggled up to her.  She was vaguely aware of Xana stroking her hair, gently untangling it; gently smoothing it away from her face.  It was as if her friend was trying to straighten her hair so it wouldnt be so tangled in her face for when she cried.

But there were no tears.  Lots of sniffles, a tight face… but no tears.

“Sometimes you can’t cry.  It’s not that you don’t want to but it’s because you can’t,” Xana said quietly.  “And some days you will cry.  You know this.  You are a series of moving parts that have come undone, and now you’ve realized how much you hurt and how much you’ve lost.”  Shifting a little so her friend could see her she said, “You will rebuild yourself--”

“Is that an order?” Adriana asked.

Smiling gently Xana said quietly, “More like... a preview of things to come.  You will heal, you will rebuild yourself, and you will never be the same.”  Pausing for a moment she said, “And that’s ok; you wouldn’t want to be the same after this.”  Pausing she said, “But you still have a chance of life and someone I know told me that you should take every chance for it.”

Sighing Adriana realized that Xana was referring to *her*; when Xana had been dying, it was Adriana who had pushed Xana (literally at the end) to go after life.  

Sonja sighed and walked over.  “Not only are we in a new universe, with new versions of ourselves, but now you have to each other’s jobs too?” she asked.  

“Well I need a back up job,” Xana smiled.  Looking over at Ya’Han she said, “Did you tell her?”

As the Nylaan nodded, the Engineer sat down across from the Ambassador.  “We’re not doing this here,” Sonja replied, darting her eyes to Adriana.  

“Either we’re all in this together or not at all,” Xana replied.  

Sonja threw up her hands and looked at Ya’Han.  “Talk to her will you!”

“I can do my job or I can explain to Xana why she shouldn’t do something,” Ya’Han pointed out.  Leaning against the wall, with an eye on the door she conceded, “I see both points.”  Thinking on it for a moment she said, “We don’t know when our crew will come for us, if they are able to.  It makes sense to have us all aware of what is going on.”  Thinking for a moment Ya’Han considered the Counselor, whom she respected greatly she said with a measure of soft caution, “But if we are all not at our best then it could be worse.”

Looking down, the Nylaan saw the puppy had abandoned Adriana and was sitting at her feet, his big brown eyes wide as he wagged his tail, clearly looking for attention.  “Lavish displays of attention will not impress me,” Ya’Han warned D’Artagnan.

“You heard Ya’Han,” Sonja pointed out.

Xana smirked at the scene of Ya’Han with D’Artagnan.  “Yes, I heard lavish displays don’t impress her much.”  At Sonja’s growl of warning, the Ambassador turned her head to the CEO.  “It goes both ways, Ya’Han said as much, and in this case I happen to disagree with you.  She should know what’s going on.  She’s never going to get better if we treat her like she’s an artifact from the Kyrian Heritage Museum.” 

“She needs time to heal!  We’ve barely given her any room to breathe and now you want to unload on her,” Sonja pointed out.  “Do what you need to without involving everyone.  That should be possible from what I’ve heard.  It’s either shoot or talk, figure it out without her--”

As she lay curled up on her side, it occurred (belatedly) to Adriana that the *her* and *she* in this conversation… was… well… “It’s me, isn’t it?” she asked rhetorically.    “Stop talking about me like I’m not here,” she said.  Sitting up from her curled up position she said, “I can at least *listen*.”  When Sonja looked pissed off Adriana felt a shadow of herself hovering outside herself as she said, “I know how to listen, Sonja.”  Looking at Xana she said, “And I don't have to do anything.  Just listen, Xana.”  Looking at Ya’Han she asked, “Is there any harm in listening?”

“Yes,” Ya’Han replied.  Looking up straight at her friend she said, “Listening always leads to *something*.”

Adriana thought about that and nodded.  “Puppy size steps,” she smiled as she watched D’Artagnan trot around looking for something to play with.  

Over Sonja’s mutterings, Ya’Han began.  “Xana uncovered that the government, The Confederacy, is looking to prepare their people for a jump.  They want to go to war with The Federation, with the idea of taking over.”

Xana turned and looked at the Junior Ambassador.  “As we were going around, Ya’Han was able to overhear that there is a link between Krokax, who managed to bring us all here, The Confederacy, and the Orions, where we left from.”  Sighing she said, “We can’t figure it out yet, but we were thinking--”

“Shoot or make peace,” Sonja pointed out.  Looking at Adriana she said, “See you know everything now, either we shoot our way out or make peace.  But Ya’Han and Xana will deal with this and--”

Adriana, whose eyes had never left the puppy, interrupted Sonja.  “There’s a third option.”

It was quiet in the quarters except for the playful growls of the puppy who was trying to pull on a piece of rope he found.  

Looking over at her friend, the Counselor said quietly, “We could run.”  As the other women stared at her, Adriana clarified her thinking, “You said it yourself Ya’Han, we don’t know *when* or *if* anyone is coming for us.  It may only just be us.”  

Looking at Xana she said, “And you have no power here to negotiate.  An Ambassador’s ability to negotiate is either by her own strength, or by the strength she brings with her.  You aren’t recognized here, and they want to kill the Federation.”  

Finally turning to Sonja Adriana said, “I don’t remember how I came here.  But how did you all come here?  Could we use that?  Maybe to go back and warn the others?”

“That hunk of junk, lasting another trip?” Sonja muttered.  “Sure Cinderelly can fix the atmospheric alternate conduit for another joyride.”  Grabbing her hair in frustration, “Now if only I had something to fix that outdated ionic tetryon emissions system.”  

As Sonja began muttering, Adriana saw Ya’Han glare at her.  “I told you listening always leads to something,” she muttered.  “But I did not think it was going to lead us to that *thing* again.”

Adriana looked at Xana who smiled.  “I’m calling dibs on piloting the Winnebago with Wings.”  The azure woman stretched her arms and stood up, and whistled for the dog, “Come on sweetie, we need to take you for a walk.”

The Counselor looked back and forth at her friends.  “What’s a Winnebago with Wings?” she asked.

“You wanted to listen,” Ya’Han warned.  “You know no one is just going to let us walk, or fly out of here.”

“One step at a time, Ya’Han.”  Xana threw a playful glance at the Security officer as she said that and smiled.  Looking back at Adriana she explained. “The Winnebago with Wings is Option 3.  I think we should check it out.”  Looking at Adriana she said, “There is a difference between living and being alive... congrats on taking a puppy size step towards the latter.”

=/\=
Sarah Albertini-Bond
USS ANUBIS
M13-B011: USS BASTET: A'Janni: 35012.1525 ("Cat and Mouse")
"Cat and Mouse"
[previous (ANU) "Living or Alive" / (BAS) "Dogged"]

[/\]
Setting: USS BASTET. Bridge
Stardate: 35012.1525

With each second that passed, the idea that they were being followed by some sort of cloaked ship sink in a little further. Every course correction, every change in speed was echoed perfectly by whatever was behind them. Whoever or whatever they were knew about the limits of Federation technology as they managed to remain right on the very edge of their sensors.

No one on the bridge found this amusing and the one-eyed Catian found it even less enjoyable as he was not the type to like playing a game of 'cat and mouse', especially when he was forced to play the latter.

Captain Iverson and Commander Valentine decided not to bring the BASTET to red alert, playing on the odds that whatever was following them would pick up on the change of status and realize that they had been discovered. So far, the change in heading and speed could be explained as an effort to thwart the long-range sensors located on the outskirts of the ORION system. Enel was less than happy with that decision as it left the ship and crew vulnerable to attacks, a sentiment that A'Janni silently shared.

"Captain," the FCO began. "We are approaching the limits of the ORION system. We will no longer be able to make these unexpected course corrections without taking the risk that they know about them."

"We know they are there, so there is no need for us to use such maneuvers anymore," Commander Valentine pointed out. "Lt. Mitshiba, do you have anything more to report on whatever is following us?"

"Absolutely nothing," Misaki reported. "They know exactly where to stay in order to avoid being identified, the only thing I can offer is that I suspect that their sensors have the exact same limitations, which explains why they are not further away making it impossible for us to detect them."

"A cloaked Federation vessel?" A'Janni gasped.

"The USS HATHOR is the only Federation ship with a cloaking device," Gemma reported. "Whatever it out there is not it. If the HATHOR was trailing us for whatever reasons, it would not be so far away for the simple reason that it would be able to modulate its shields to offset our sensors. It is far more likely that the cloaking device is of another origin but that the propulsion system of that ship is based on Federation technology."

"Based on or stolen from," Captain Iverson offered as another possible explanation.

"Stealing a propulsion system from a Federation ship is not like swiping lose credits from someone's pocket," A'Janni pointed out. "I doubt that Starfleet would have let such a crime go unanswered."

"Not if the propulsion system came from a derelict ship," Gemma noted. "It could have also been taken from a ship that was presumed destroyed during the War of Shadows. Many vessels were unfortunately lost during that conflict. There is also the possibility that we are dealing with a ship from a race that received technological assistance from the Federation, beit willingly or covertly. It would not the first time that the Ferengi have sold stolen and more advanced tech to other races."

"That would explain why the cloaking device is not operating as it should," Zub theorized. "If this is what we are dealing with, the next question needs to be 'what other tech did they get their hands on?' We have to assume that they may decide to engage us before we get to close to ORION."

"If they wanted to attack, they would have done so well before we detected them," A'Janni proposed. "That is if they even have any weapons. This game of 'cat and mouse' they are playing is not a sound combat tactic."

"They have stolen Federation technology," the Voth huffed. "That alone should identify the limit of their intellect, which in turn makes them that much more unpredictable and dangerous."

"Great, all we need is to have the Pakled on our tail at this time," Misaki sighed.

"Even the Pakled have better tactical know-how," Jayson said from the Operations station. "It is far more likely that we are dealing with someone trying to gather intel rather then seeking the perfect opportunity to engage us."

"We could always turn around and see what they want," the Caitian suggested as he was quickly getting tired of this game they were being forced to play.

"Continue on our current course and speed," Captain Iverson ordered. "We know they are there, let us just see what they do as we get closer to ORION and the various ships that will most certainly be in orbit of that planet."

[/\]
Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant JG A'Janni [Access Character BIO for A'Janni]
Flight Control Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M17-A012: USS ANUBIS: Shar'El: 35012.1530 ("Observations")
=-=
"Observations"
[the previous posts were (ANU) "Living or Alive" by Sarah / (BAS) "Cat and Mouse" by Jayson]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35012.1530

The ExO / ILO walked onto the bridge to find everyone busy with the latest issue to have presented itself. Normally, Shar'El would have immediately taken control of the situation, likely heading to the IGC to focus all of the ship's resources onto identifying the craft that was following them, but this was not the ANUBIS nor was it her place to take control of anything. The best the Commander could do was to stand out of the way and observe, study and learn, as any good ILO always did.

For obvious reasons, Shar'El's attention was directed onto her counterpart; the woman the member of this crew referred to as Gemma. It was easy to see that the Lieutenant was skilled and knew exactly what do to in her current role as ILO. Had the situation been different, the ExO / ILO would have cherished having someone with her abilities on board the ANUBIS, but alas, the woman with the multiple shattered personalities had a very specific role to play on this ship. Who else could have been in Main Engineering fixing what needed to be fixed one minute and be on the Bridge dealing with identifying an unknown ship the next?

Not wanting to give the impression that she was there only to keep an eye on the woman tasked with doing the same back, Shar'El scanned the rest of the bridge officers. When she met the narrowed eyes of Commander Valentine, the two women shared a silent stare-down meant to make it clear what roles each played in the present situation. One was in charge while the other was nothing more than an observer.

Not wishing to challenge this, the EXO / ILO continue her scan of the room until her eyes fell upon a man she knew all too well. As if sensing her presence, he looked up causing the Commander to offer a quick grin to the Chief of Operations, glad to see that Jayson had taken ownership of his new responsibilities with ease. Shar'El even noted that the man appeared happier than he had been in a long time, his thoughts and memories finally focused on something other than the woman he loved and so desperately needed to see her give him the affection she had once so abundantly offered.

"Lt. Gemma, have you been able to get anything more on whatever is following us?" Sarena demanded.

"No," the ILO promptly replied. "They are making sure to stay at the outer most edge of our sensors."

"Commander Valentine, Captain Iverson," Shar'El said calling upon her the attention of the two senior-most officers in charge of the BASTET. "If I may be so bold, could I offer a possible course of action."

Selene glanced up at Sarena to see if she had an objection to offer. As much as the First Officer was visibly not pleased to see Shar'El on the bridge, Valentine could not offer any argument that her Captain would find acceptable. "Go ahead," Iverson said, willing to entertain anything that might provide them with an answer as to the identity and purpose of the craft not-so-covertly following them.

"We are approaching the border of the ORION System," Shar'El said. "Have the ship drop to impulse power. Even if the ship following us matches our speed, they will not be able to do so fast enough to avoid falling inside the reach of your sensors. The maneuver might be overly simple, but it might grant you a few seconds of sensor data which might prove sufficient to identify who is following us."

"The window will be only seconds at best," Sarena pointed out. "That ship back there has done everything it can to stay out of reach."

"A few seconds might be all we need Commander," Mitshiba joined in. "As far as we know, that other ship has no idea that we know it is there. If all of our sensors are aimed to that location, we might be able to get enough data to identify it, or at the very least its origin."

"It would also leave us very vulnerable," the tall lizardman said opening his three-fingered hands as a show of disapproval. "That should would be able to get within optimal firing range long before we could raise our shields because I am guessing that raising shields first is not part of that plan."

"If we did raise shields first, it would tip whoever is on that ship as to our knowing something is not right," Gemma said. "If they are half as smart and they are paranoid, they will change course and make sure that we do not get even a fraction of a second's time to scan them."

"It is a calculated risk," Shar'El stated.

"We better make a decision fast," A'Janni added. "We are going to be at the outer border in 22 seconds."

The Captain looked up once more at her First Officer, but instead of letting her take control, it was Selene herself who stepped up. "Misaki, get the sensors ready. Gemma, I need you to get everything possible on that ship. No data is to be considered insignificant. A'Janni, stand by to drop out of warp on my orders."

"Better hold on to something people," Jayson said grinning. "Inertial dampeners are not going to be 100% effective at this rate of deceleration."

"Helm..." The Captain quickly looked around to make sure everyone was ready. "NOW!"

The sudden shift from Faster-than-light travel to sub-light speed caused everyone to jerk forward, but since everyone expected this to happen no one was caught off-guard.  Silence ruled the bridge as the officers waited to see what would happen next.

"The other ship is now less than 14,000 kilometers from us, well within range of our sensors," Mitshiba reported.

"The ship is matching our speed and does not appear to be trying to do anything else," Gemma added.

"Captain," Ensign Enel said, the nervousness of his voice clear as day. "We need to raise shields now, before it is too late."

"The ship is small, no larger than a runabout" Mitshiba followed with. "It is unlikely that they have any sort of weapons that could prove dangerous to this ship. I am actually surprised that it possesses a cloaking device, but it would explain why it is working so poorly. That ship simply doesn't have the kind of power output required for a piece of equipment like that."

"I do not know about weapons, but I can vouch that they have a communication system," Jayson offered. "They are trying to contact us. They are requesting visual two-way channel."

"Guess we left them with nothing else to do but explain themselves," Shar'El said sounding rather pleased with herself.

"On main viewer," Captain Iverson ordered.

Silence once again took hold of the bridge as an unexpected face appeared on the large forward screen.

[/\] Captain Iverson, it is nice to finally meet you. I will be honest in saying that I had hoped this would not happen right away, but you have left me with no other choice. I am sure that you and your officers have a million questions, and I would be happy to answer them all. Would you allow me to come aboard? [/\]

Selene's eyes, as well as those of everyone else on the bridge, were glued to the screen and the image being displayed on it. Even after countless travels through space, other dimensions and time, no one could have expected to see the person looking back at them.

"We will have a shuttle bay ready to receive your ship," the Captain said, never taking her eyes off the large screen.

[/\] Thank you, [/\] the woman with a striking head of long blonde hair said. [/\] See you soon. [/\]  As soon as the visual communication ended, all eyes turned onto Captain Iverson.

"She looks just like you," Commander Valentine said. "Except for the long blond hair that is. Do you have a sister?"

"I do not," Selene sighed. "I do not."

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS

Chief Medical Officer
USS BASTET
M13-B012: USS BASTET: Dima: 35012.1535 ("The Only Constant")
"The Only Constant"
[Previous Posts: (ANU) "Observations”/ (BAS) "Cat and Mouse”]


=/\=
"Give me knowledge, so I may have kindness for all."
-Plains Indian Proverb


=/\=
Setting: USS BASTET, Arboretum
Stardate: 35012.1535

Eric inhaled deeply. The plant life surrounding him energized the atmosphere with its oxygen. He could feel the imperceptible change between this and the slight staleness on other decks. The closeness with nature provided him with a small degree of comfort, something that was in scathingly short supply.

“Enjoying the scenery?” a warm, inviting voice asked. The impish brunette walked over to her former CO.

While it was a feast for the eyes, it was not a replacement for his ship or his missing crew... by a long shot.  “Not especially,” he admitted to the Counselor. “Were you looking for me?”

She ran a hand haphazardly through her short hair. “I’m looking for answers.”

Morningstar laughed in spite of himself. “You might be lost.”

“Wouldn’t be the first time,” she answered, a chill touching her shoulders. The memories of her time in the Reman prison camp hazily surfaced. “We didn’t really get the chance to talk earlier.” Maya had accompanied Nicole and Sofia to brief the Captain and the ILO of the ANUBIS regarding the ship’s heading to ORION. Everything moved quickly after that; too quickly to catch up.

“Business before pleasure,” he acknowledged. They walked slowly in tandem, a stance that was still familiar to both of them.

Eric settled in for a minute, waiting for a conversation that wasn't forthcoming, even though Dima had indicated she wanted to talk. "It's not like you to hesitate."

She folded her arms in defiance. “Maybe if I don’t say anything, I can keep pretending things haven’t changed.”

“Things?”

“A tiny pebble is dropped into a still pond. Ripples disrupt the water’s surface, going outward from the point of impact. Everything is affected. Only I don’t know if I’m a pebble or a ripple.” She bit her lip. “I want to apologize.”

“Apologize? What for?”

“For accidentally activating the Blink Drive, and getting lost.”

The Native American man’s face registered surprise. She had endured suffering for her innocent mistake. “I should be the one apologizing, for not being able to find some way to rescue you.”

“Orders from Koniki aren’t negotiable- I know that,” she replied. “And assignments come and go. It’s part and parcel of the job. But to not be able to say a proper goodbye, I never wanted that,” Nicole replied. “Certainly not in such an abrupt way. Maybe if I had never left…” she looked troubled as her thought trailed off.

“Wait a minute- surely you can’t believe we are here now because of that anomaly?”

Nic sighed. “I’m not sure what to believe. Even though it wasn’t intentional, I cultivated an image of all of you in my mind, being exactly the same as when I had left you.” Whatever had happened between Jayson and Ya’Han was just one of many things she had been forced to face, even though she had yet to discover what that was. “Now I realize that was foolish of me.”

“The only constant in the universe is change,” Eric remarked. “If it applies to you, it applies to all of us.”

“It’s not wrong that I want you all to be safe,” she said defensively.

“Of course not,” he answered gently. “But you cannot take sole responsibility for our safety. You can’t even be fully responsible for your *own* safety. Events happen that are beyond our control. When you put that last crystal in Arken’s device, no one suspected what would transpire.”

The realization passed over the joined Trill’s face. “Just like Counselor Lopez’ trip to ORION somehow ended up with her in another universe.”

“And three more of my people after her,” Eric said.

Nicole clasped her hands on top of his. ”I’m so sorry this is happening.”

“That’s two apologies in one conversation. What have you been learning on this ship?” he asked with the beginnings of a smile.

“That no matter what, I want to help.”

=/\=
Susan Ledbetter

Cns
USS BASTET
M13-B013: USS BASTET: Iverson: 35012.1610 ("Broken Mirror")
---
"Broken Mirror"
(Previous Post: (ANU) "Observations" / (BAS) "The Only Constant")
---

Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 11, Shuttle Bay 
Stardate: 35012.1610

The BASTET was on an urgent mission, but Selene suspected that given the circumstances Erik and the other member of his crew onboard her ship would understand why this delay was necessary.  With that in mind, Captain Iverson stood in the open doorway leading into the shuttle bay, a very nervous First Officer and Chief of Security standing on either side of her.

"Captain, you should not be here," Ensign Enel said repeating his objection once more. "We have no idea *who* that person is. For all we know she could have been sent here to capture you, or worse. Her appearance could be nothing more than a ploy to allow her easy access to the ship, which I must again state for the record that I am completely against. There is just too much we do not know about her or the reasons that have brought here her."

Sarena joined in right away, making her position on this situation abundantly clear. "Your Chief of Security is right. You should not be here."

"I need to know *who* she is," Iverson said without looking at either officer. The eyes of the Captain were locked on the area of space that could be seen through the currently opened external doors of the shuttle bay. The only thing that stood between the three officers and the vacuum of space was a simple forcefield, but this was the least of their concerns.

"We all do," Valentine said correcting the statement of the Voth Chief of Security, "but that is not the only reason why you should not be here. The visual communication gave her an unexpected advantage, she knows that you are here. We have no idea what her plans are, and I would feel a lot better knowing that you are safe and as far away from her as possible until we get to the bottom of what is going on here. I am sure that you would do the same for anyone else on board, including our guests from the ANUBIS."

"Captain, there is still time. The ship has not yet begun its final approach, this means that whoever is inside has no idea that you are here, on this deck and ready to greet them," Zub said, hoping that the Captain would see the folly in allowing her curiosity to win over logic and self-preservation.

"You can observe everything from the bridge," Sarena added. "Let me and Ensign Enel take care of this. We can escort her to Sickbay and have the Doctor run some physical scans and tests, this will give Sofia the opportunity to maybe learn something about who she really is. In the meantime, I am sure that Aki and Maya will be more than happy to give that ship a thorough once over. If there is something to be learned from it, they are the ones to find it."

Selene rolled her eyes. It was clear that she would not win this argument, especially given that those opposing her were right. There were just too many questions and unknown variables, all of them possibly putting her life as well as that of everyone else on board the BASTET at risk. "Find out as much as you can," the Captain said before she walked away leaving her First Officer and Chief of Security to take care of things.
---
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35012.1615

"The ship is on final approach to the shuttle bay," Lieutenant Stark reported from the Operations station. "Everything looks as it should. Sensors are not picking up any other ships or any unexpected energy spikes from our soon-to-be-guest."

"The ship appears to be a Federation runabout, well, at least for the most part," Mitshiba said, the Chief Science Officer having already begun the investigation into the unknown craft. "The energy output is all wrong, not to mention that there is an odd residual energy field around the nacelles."

All eyes quickly turned onto Iverson as she returned to the bridge prompting Gemma to intercept her before she could even reach her chair. "Captain, I am glad to see that you have elected to watch from a distance."

"I was not given much of a choice," Selene said stoically. "Commander Valentine and Ensign Enel will be escorting our guest to Sickbay so that Doctor Andersson can perform a full physical examination on her. I would like for you to be there as well, maybe you can help uncover what the purpose of her visit truly is."

"Of course, Captain," the Intel Liaison Officer acknowledged.

"Captain," Commander Shar'El interjected. "May I offer my assistance. I do have certain unique abilities that might prove most useful at this time."

Everyone could see that Gemma was not at all pleased, but she knew that the decision was not hers to make. Selene took a few seconds to consider the offer before she nodded her acceptance. "Thank you, Commander, any advantage we can get will be a welcomed one. Proceed."

With that said Gemma and Shar'El headed for the turbolift, neither one saying anything to the other, not that they needed to as both already knew what the other was thinking.

Once the ILOs had left, Captain Iverson turned her attention onto the Asian scientist. "Lieutenant Mitshiba, I would like for you to perform a thorough scan of the ship that is in our shuttle bay. It might be an idea for you to bring Lieutenant Commander Maya along, I am sure that the two of you will be able to uncover whatever secrets that may be hiding inside."

"Of course, Captain," Misaki acknowledged before making her way to the turbolift.

"Captain?" The Chief of Operations asked. "This might be a very weird question, but have you *ever* had or even considered letting your hair grow and bleached blonde?"

Selene sighed to herself. The question might have seemed weird, but the answer might prove to be equally unexpected. "If that woman is an alternate me, I can assure you that the choice of hair style and colour is the least of our differences."

---
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) 
M13-B014: USS BASTET: Enel: 35012.1620 ("Wary Welcome")
=-=
“Wary Welcome”
Previous posts: (ANU) “Observations” / (BAS) “Broken Mirror”

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 11, Shuttle Bay
Stardate: 35012.1620

After Captain Iverson agreed to leave and the crew access door to the shuttle bay had closed behind her, ExO Sarena Valentine leaned toward the tall scaly Chief of Security and said in a conspiratorial whisper, “Thanks for backing me on that one, Zub Enel.”

“All the same, taking this alien aboard is a highly dangerous decision. Whoever that is may have us right where she wants us.”

“Aki says she’s alone in that little ship. At best she is an army of one.”

“It could blow up right in the middle of our shuttle bay.”

The ExO tilted her head as she thought about that. “No, she seemed interested in meeting us. Plus, since she bears such a striking resemblance to our CO, she might be as motivated to stay alive as Selene is.”

“Or she might be as crafty, too,” the Voth said, dropping his three-fingered hands into a fig leaf.

The alien ship came into view, bracketed by the open shuttle bay doors. Barely visible blue beams played on the vessel blunt bow. The Ops Officer Jayson Stark announced, =/\= Craft inbound. Accepted our tractor beam. =/\=

Sarena glanced at the BASTET’s own Euphrates-class runabout that had been moved aside to make room for the incoming alien craft. The ExO asked the giant Chief of Security, “Why is there a light on inside the BLACK CAT?”

The scaly Voth stood a little straighter at attention. “Security detail hidden aboard. Just in case we need to flood the area.”

The ExO looked up at his face cooly. “You’re wise to be so cautious, but nix the lights.”

Zub Enel spoke softly into his comm. The lights went out in the runabout just as the alien runabout nosed into the bay.

The runabout, guided smoothly by the tractor beam, was about 25 meters in length, It was painted black with no insignia. The front of twin nacelles, like fat landing skis, glowed dusky orange. A person could be seen backlit in the cockpit.

The SecTac’s resonant voice bounced back a bit from the force field protecting the two officers from violent decompression. “Surprisingly like a Federation Danube-class vessel. A somewhat modified one.”

The ExO nodded. “Not an ancient relic, exactly, certainly not the most modern of runabouts. Look at all that extra cabling and strap-on boxes on the nacelles.”

The towering lizard man smiled. “Aki and Lt. Commander Maya are going to be very pleased to inspect that.”

The runabout touched down gently in the exact center of the shuttle bay. A field had glinted briefly as it formed over the door of the outer port of the shuttle bay. The force field protecting the pair of Federation officers vanished, letting in cool air. The lighting of the bay brightened automatically. The runabout’s door didn’t immediately open.

The Exo and Security Chief waited with growing anxiety as the vessel just sat there.

The Chief spoke softly into his comm. The hatch of the BLACK CAT opened and a surprising number of security personnel issued out. They formed a rough ring around the craft as they faced it.

Sarena chuckled. “You are one to prepare, Chief.”

“Sir,” Zub said, his voice betraying tension.

After another short wait without movement on the runabout, Commander Valentine said, “Alright, all this display of muscle might be making her nervous. Let’s try approaching *her*.”

 Zub clasped his clawed fingers behind his back. He and the Exo stepped toward the vessel. “Smile,” the Exo said softly. “We’re one big happy fleet.” Zub watched the door of the runabout closely, but he managed to get the corners of his mouth turned upward.

The door made a slight hiss of air exchange as it swung out and up. A set of stairs swung out and down from the hull. An average sized woman of apparent Terran origin appeared in the hatchway in a red pantsuit with a white top under a red jacket that closed over her chest with the seam along one shoulder. Her hair was strikingly blonde, but her grey eyes were definitely Selene Iverson’s. Unlike Selene in most situations, she showed a wide smile verging on a grin.

“Thank you for allowing me aboard,” she said as she stepped down from the runabout in sensible flat black shoes. Her carriage and gait as she came forward was confident.

Sarena started to say, “I’m the ExO of this vessel ….”

“Lt. Commander Sarena Valentine,” the woman with Selene’s face said, almost as a recitation. Her grey eyes took in the Voth, looking up and up at him.

Zub stood at attention. “I am Chief of Security Ensign Zub Enel.”

“Mmm,” the woman said noncommittally. She looked at Sarena. “At first I though he was your pet.” She smiled broader to show she might be joking.

“Him?” Sarena said. “Too high maintenance. Just keeping him stuffed with salad is a budget buster.”

The woman’s gaze swept the Voth. “So, those claws are for digging roots, I gather. A vegetarian Security Chief. Mmm.”

Zub’s down stirred as a small fire of indignation flared in his stomach. His scales tingled as they started to pink. He glanced down with golden eyes at the Exo. Her own steel-gray gaze was telling him to not react.

The Exo said to the woman, “Would you please accompany us to our medical area. We’d like to make sure you’re in good health.”

“Of course,” the woman said.

Zub looked over the head of the woman and held up two of his three fingers. A man and a woman of the security detail immediately left the circle around the runabout and came up silently.

“This way,” the ExO said solicitously to the woman. “Sickbay, “ she said to the pair of security people. They took the lead toward the bay’s exit door.

The woman’s smile cooled just a fraction. “Walking? No site-to-site transport?”

The ExO looked up at her Security Chief for an explanation.

They’d agreed earlier to show this alien as little of the ship as possible. Zub said, “We’d rather not transport you until we know more about your - uh - configuration.”

The woman gave a little musical laugh. She said to Sarena, “He’s worried about my ‘configuration’.”

Sarena smiled at her as they started to follow the guards. “Is that some sort of uniform you’re wearing?”

“This?” The stunning blonde arched a perfectly manicured hand toward the shoulder of her red jacket. He tone was dismissive. “It’s just something I threw on.”

The woman turned her head forward and with her perma-smile followed the security team. Sarena fell behind a few steps and pulled the Voth closer. “Looks exactly like Selene. A clone maybe?”

The Ensign was afraid to speak because his voice carried. He gave a big shrug.

They needed to move 6 decks to reach Sickbay. Getting five souls into the turbolift proved challenging, especially since the 7-foot tall Security Chief took up an inordinate among of space. They got themselves crammed in all the same. Zub was behind the woman. He took a sniff of her.

The turbolift doors hiccuped opened to let them out on Deck 5. The security detail led the way toward Sickbay. The woman, smiling, followed at a stride. Sarena and Zub trailed.

The ExO said softly, “That’s a uniform or I’ll eat my hat. You notice she didn’t give us her name?”

The lizard man nodded.

The door to Sickbay opened with a whoosh. As the guards and the woman stepped in, the ExO held back the Voth by tugging his arm.

She whispered, “You sniffed her, didn’t you?”

“Only the once,” he said, feigning shame in his tone.

Sarena raised her eyebrows at him, clearly wanting an answer.

“Exactly like our CO,” Zub Enel said. “I did notice something else. Might be nothing. She knew you, but seemed not to expect me or know me. I’m new on the BASTET. Maybe whatever information she has on us is a little out-of-date.”

“Maybe,” Sarena said. “But you’re an awful lot to take in as a first-impression. Let’s join our ‘guest’. Smile.”

The two entered Sickbay smiling.

=-=
David Michael Inverso

Chief Security and Tactical Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977

“Be wary of strong drink. It can make you shoot at tax collectors... and miss.”
 — Robert A. Heinlein
M17-A013: USS ANUBIS: Bruxa: 35012.1635 ("Helping Hand")
=-=
"Helping Hand"
[the previous posts were (ANU) "Observations" / (BAS) "Wary Welcome"]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 35012.1635

The moment Sarena and Zub walked in, the two CMOs knew what to do. Sofia didn't even have to ask Satella for help. The Mikulak woman was there, waiting and ready to assist in any way she could.  Of course, this was not nearly as strange as it was for everyone else. As far as Bruxa was concerned, their new patient simply bared an uncanny resemblance to Capt. Iverson. Nothing more, the woman was just another patient like so many other.

"Please, have a seat." Sofia's tone was polite but cautious. Satella could tell that her fellow CMO did not trust the woman. Despite this unmistakable and tangible feeling, the woman complied and smiled. That pleasant display was more than enough to set the woman as a separate individual. As far as Bruxa was concerned and based on what she had been told by Andersson, Capt. Iverson very rarely smiled.

"Please sit still while the Doctor runs a few tests," Satella said. Although she was a certified CMO, her role right now would be that of a nurse. This was not her Sickbay and she would not presume to be an equal to Sofia. Right now, Andersson needed to focus on her new patient, not fight for control of her own domain. All things said and done though, Bruxa was more than happy to take a back seat in this particular affair. It was nice for once to not be the one responsible for everything that happened in Sickbay.

A soft beam of white light shunned from above, engulfing the sitting woman. Instantly a set of medical readings appeared on the main diagnostic board.  "Alright, so let’s see… 5'7", 166 pounds, strong muscular structure. Circulatory and respiratory systems are both working at peak efficiency." Sofia's report sounded more like her reading from a medical file. The Doctor was not even acknowledging the woman's presence on the examination bed.  Andersson paused than softly growled and sighed before adding one more detail. "You are a Dinaali/Terran hybrid."

"Thank you for noticing, Doctor," the woman said, smiling. "Was it the grey eyes that gave me away?"  Satella found the woman's joyful demeanor endearing. The same could not be said for Sofia who did her best to ignore her patient. It was as if she wanted to despise her for just being there. That sentiment made Bruxa think of the situation more carefully. Soon, memories of another Jayson Stark snuck into her mind. Now the CMO of the ANUBIS understood perfectly why the other Doctor was acting the way she was.

"The genetic markers are a match at 99.86 percent." Doctor Andersson was sounding increasingly upset. Likely, the CMO had hoped to find something to explain the woman's appearance aside from the obvious. Every test so far though pointed to the same inevitable conclusion. The woman was a match for Iverson Captain minus the flowing long blonde hair.

"Could we be dealing with a clone?" The question might have sounded weird to Sofia, but for Satella it made perfect sense. Dealing with Mordana and her clones, especially that of Jayson Stark, the possibility was all too real. The more Bruxa thought of that single possibility, the stronger the cold chill running down her back grew.

Dr. Andersson shook her head dismissing the suggestion. "No, my scans picked up a dimensional resonance at the cellular level. If she is a clone, she didn't come from this dimension."

For a brief moment Satella considered another possibility. After all, the Lokustaar were from another dimension and they were responsible for the creation of the clones encountered during the War of Shadows. If this was the case though, it would mean that the Shadows had found a way back to this dimension. That thought alone was more than enough to make Bruxa wish for the woman to be anything but a clone.

"Doctor, I assure you that I am not a clone. Both my parents can attest to that. I am sure that there were times when they would have preferred that I was.  Let's face it, raising a child on a starship is no easy task. I guess that explains why I am an only child."

"If you say so," Sofia dismissed. Doctor Andersson was firmly holding on to her dislike of the woman despite her efforts. "Now, lay down, there are still several more tests that I need to run."

The woman smiled at Satella who in turn returned the gesture. Many would have been upset about these tests. Some might even have become oppositional. Not her, she accepted things without any issue as if understanding why these were considered necessary. The 'twin' reached around her neck to pull her long blond hair forward before laying down on her back.

Without any fanfare Andersson and Bruxa continued with the medical examination. As they did, the woman turned her head and glanced in the direction of the First Officer and Chief of Security. The escort had been joined by two other women, both appearing very different as could be from each other. Yet, the redhead and black-haired women sharing a strange aura that identified them as being more similar than either would care to admit.

=-=
Rachel Jackie Johnson

Lieutenant JG Satella Bruxa [Access Character BIO for Satella Bruxa]
Chief Medical Officer
USS ANUBIS

[Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint. - Mark Twain]
M17-A014: USS ANUBIS: Lopez: 35012.1645 ("Emotional Overflow")
-=-=-
"Emotional Overflow"
[Previous post: (ANU) "Helping Hand" & (BAS) "Wary Welcome"]
-=-=-

Setting:  SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Maintenance Corridor
Stardate: 35012.1645

The Counsellor was huddled in a corner holding on to D'Artagnan who appeared just as confused and lost as she did. Something happened but Adriana was not quite sure what, all she knew was that the four of them had suddenly left their room and snuck around the station using the maintenance corridors to get wherever they were going with the least amount of interference. Judging by the expressions of the others, that was when she was able to see their faces, there was a sense of extreme urgency which was why the Counselor followed without asking any questions.

It was her fault that they were all here on this space station and Lopez did not want to add any more hardships to the lives of her friends and fellow shipmates by making a pest of herself. Keeping D'Artagnan quick and out from underfoot was just about as much as Adriana believed herself capable of doing right now.

"Are you sure that it's supposed to be here?" the Counselor heard the Chief Engineer ask. The other three women were a little further down the corridor looking through what appeared to be partially opened door.

"That is what I overheard," the Chief of Security said sounding a little annoyed. "Listen, I'm not Shar'El. I am not an ILO nor do have have the ability to look into someone's memories. The best I can do is to pretend to be someone else and keep my ears opened while not getting dragged into some conflict or getting killed, and that is what I did."

"We are all doing the best we can," Xana said making Adriana smile. If there was one person who could talk people down it was the Ambassador. The woman had a gift with such things, a gift that made things a lot easier at times while performing her duties as a Federation representative. "If the information is accurate, we will have only a short window of opportunity to make use of it. If the information is, for one reason or another, inaccurate, then we just head back to our quarters and go to plan B."

"Plan B?" Sonja laughed. "We are way past 'B' by now. In fact, I think we managed to make our way through the whole alphabet more than once, and that includes some letters that I had never heard of before we arrived to this reject from an old low-budget wannabe horror flick."
"Being here has not been easy," Ya'Han said. "We all had to deal with things that we could never have expected. Coming face to face with people who are *us* was rather unsettling."

"Us only in appearance," Xana said making a point to point out that Xena and her were by no means the same person.

"Whatever," Sonja dismissed with a wave of her hand. "We are here and that rusted bucket of bolts is nowhere to be seen. How are we supposed to get home without it?"

Adriana closed her eyes and held onto the small puppy with all of her might. As a Ship's Counselor she was used to dealing with people disagreeing with one another, she also knew how to deal with irate individuals. Right now, though, all of her training counted for nothing, the sounds of the nearby arguments making her wish that she was back in their quarters or worse back in her cell. The trauma Lopez had been forced to endure during her captivity had taken a heavy toll on her.

"Are you okay?" Xana asked, the Bolian/Human woman having noticed the psychological withdraw of the Junior Ambassador.

"Of course I am," Adriana replied, the smile she did her best to put on stretching from ear-to-ear. "What makes you think that there is something wrong with me?"

"For starter; he way you are nearly chocking the poor thing in your arms," the Ambassador said glancing down at D'Artagnan, the puppy barely able to breathe due to the death grip Lopez had on it. "If that was not enough, the look on your face was one of fear, and trust me, I have seen that look more times that I care to remember."

"I'm... I'm... I'm sorry," that was all Adriana could manage to say before the storm of emotions raging within her became too much to hold back leaving her with no other option but to bury her face into Xana's chest before she started crying.  There was little else Xana could do but to hold the broken woman tightly against her, trying her best to comfort Adriana.

"Sorry to interrupt," Ya'Han politely said in a rushed whisper. "We found it. The darn thing was hiding behind a cargo ship that just left. If we are to get onboard, we need to move, now!"

"Adriana?" Xana asked, leaving the rest of her question as to her current state unspoken.

"I'll be alright," the Counselor said trying her hardest to regain what composure she could stil claim as her own. "Where are we going?" Lopez asked, figuring that it might not be a bad idea for her to know why they were here and apparently in such a rush.

"We learned that Krokus was leaving the station," the Ambassador explained as she helped the Junior Ambassador to her feet. "Since he was the one to bring us here, and since we managed to learn how to move about the station without being seen, it was decided that we would try and get on his ship and find a way to get back home."

"You think it will be that simple?" Adriana asked sounding overly hopeful.

"You know as well as I do that nothing is ever that easy," Xana replied adding a wink and a smile for good measure. "We have to try though. We cannot just sit here and wait to see what is going to happen next."

Adriana nodded her head to show her agreement and support. "Let's go D'Artagnan, it's time for us to go home."

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Lieutenant JG Adriana Lopez [Access Character BIO for Adriana Lopez]
Ship's Counselor & Junior Ambassador
USS ANUBIS
M13-B015: USS BASTET: Andersson: 35012.1645 ("Assessment")
=-=
"Assessment"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Emotional Overflow" by Jayson/ (BAS) "Wary Welcome" by David]
=-=
 
Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 35012.1645

Sofia had to admit that whoever this lady was, she was one of the best patients the CMO had ever had. The woman was very accommodating and understanding, not offering the slightest objection to any of the test she was being subjected to no matter how mundane or troublesome they might be.  She was the perfect patient, and that alone would have made Andersson be skeptical but the fact that all of the test results were a perfect match to those of Captain Iverson only made the Doctor trust the woman on the examination table even less than she already did.

With a PADD containing the results of the most recent tests, Sofia made her way to the two ILOs while Satella kept the woman's attention diverted onto something else.

"Well Doctor?" Shar'El asked, keeping a trained eye on the mysterious woman they were all here for.

"She is a perfect match to Captain Iverson," Sofia said, directing her words to Gemma as she was the ILO for the BASTET. "Genetically she is nearly identical. There is a very faint dimensional discrepancy in the atomic vibration of her cells though, but we are likely the only ones who would have thought to look for something like that. As far as any other medical department would be concerned, that woman is a perfect twin to Selene, except of course for the one obvious visible difference."

"I never imagined the Captain as a blonde," the redhead ILO mused letting her thoughts drift for a moment to the idea of completely different people appearing nearly identical to one another, a personal reality that she was very slowly starting to understand about herself.

"You need to push her, cause her to feel some sort of extreme physical discomfort in order to mentally throw her off-balance," the ANUBIS' ILO said. "It is obvious that her mind is very well trained. She is not allowing her thoughts, or memories, to drift to anything that might be used to identify who she is, where is came from, and most important why she so willingly came here to subject to all of your tests."

"Push her? Cause her to feel physical discomfort?" Sofia demanded, glaring at Shar'El in a way that indicated without any misunderstandings that she did not recognize the Commander's authority nor was it part of the Doctor's duties to "push" anyone in anyway, especially not in the areas of inflicting any sort of physical discomfort. "Now, I would appreciate you leaving my Sickbay. Clearly you have nothing positive to offer, and I suspect that my patient will feel a lot better not having both of you staring at her like she was some kind of weird creature to be studies." Turning to Gemma, the blonde-haired CMO added. "You can stay."

Just as Doctor Andersson was about to leave and return to her patient, Gemma reached out and took hold of Sofia's arm. The gesture was gentle enough not to cause any harm, but it was strong and forceful enough to stop the CMO in her tracks. It was easy to see that the red-haired ILO wanted to say something but was finding it difficult to do so. "Doctor, as much as you might not like it, it would be best if Commander Shar'El remains here. She does possess certain unique skills that will help us figure out who that woman is and what she truly wants."

Sofia glared at Shar'El once more but reluctantly gave in to Gemma's recommendations. "Fine, but I am not *pushing* her in any way. You do whatever it is that you do from here, and let me do what I do, the way that I do it without any comments.

Shar'El smiled as she watched the short blonde-haired woman walk away. "She is very different from the woman who was sent to PARIS to help clean things up following the Neo-Essentialist attack. It is also interesting to see how much she respects you," the ILO said to her counterpart from the BASTET. "She has very strong memories of you fighting a Lokustaar on a crippled Romulan ship. It would seem that you have quite a fan."

It was Gemma's turn to glare at the raven-haired woman. "I have actual friends on this ship."

"Friends?" Shar'El said laughing. "Do you truly believe that anyone would actually consider to be a friend to Anya Petrov or even Jinx? They might appreciate what some of your other personalities can offer, but I assure you that the are all very much afraid of you and what some of your less *accommodating* personalities can and would do to them if given even half a chance."

The BASTET's ILO remained quiet, her mind racing from one personality to the next, but yet none of them seemed willing or even able to surface as they usually did during such moments of heightened emotional turmoil.

The ExO / ILO shifted her attention back onto the pair of Doctors and more specifically their patient, hoping that something would trigger a memory from the blonde-hair copy of the ship's CO.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Chief Medical Officer
USS BASTET

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M13-B016: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: 35012.1645 ("Confirming The Mystery")
"Confirming The Mystery"
Previous posts: (ANU) "Emotional Overflow" & (BAS) "Assessment"

///^\\\  
Setting: USS BASTET, Shuttle Bay
Stardate: 35012.1645

The half dozen guards stationed all around the runabout only added to the sensation of mystery that equally surrounded the craft and its sole occupant.  The small ship was clearly of Federation design, but Aki could not just accept this as fact, not with all of the modifications and added hardware that covered the greater majority of the outer hull.

The craft was a mystery wrapped in an enigma, everything covered by a veil of mystery. Some of the tricorder readings made perfect sense while directed the Asian scientist to consider things that, under normal circumstance, should never have been remotely considered. Aki had been on the BASTET long enough to know that there was absolutely nothing *impossible* in this universe, especially when taking into account that the dimension they called home was one of countless others that made the multi-verse.

Continuing with her thorough scan of the outer hull, Aki found herself especially perplexed by a module firmly attached to what should have been the ship's lateral sensor array. The device was clearly not of Federation origin, in fact, it seemed to be more Borg than anything else, but the information gathered by the tricoder was painting an entirely different story. Studying the mechanical wonder as closely as she dared to come to it, the CSciO muttered to herself. "What exactly are you?"

"My guess is that it is just another piece of alien technology that was added to the frame of this would-be runabout," Maya said startling Misaki to such an extreme that the Asian lost her balance to land on her seat with a muffled thud. "My apologies, I did not mean to startle you. I was just answering your question which I no suspect was not intended for me. In any case, my statement holds true. The inside of the craft is filled with pieces of equipment that I suspect Lt. Cmdr. Paquette would shutter at the thought of using with one another. I am unable to even begin to make sense of how all of these parts do not end up shorting themselves out and causing the ship to explode."

"It explains why the cloaking device was not operating at full efficiency," Aki said. "Everything does seem to work but I suspect that it is because of the core technological differences that nothing does so as well as it was meant to do on their own." Mitshiba looked up at the standing scientist who obviously was took enthralled by this mystery to consider offering the downed woman help to get back to her feet.

"The bigger mystery is how could anyone construct such a craft?" Maya offered as Aki pulled herself back up. "Even with the resources of NEW ALEXANDRIA at our disposal, getting half of the specialized equipment on this craft would be nearly impossible. What is even stranger is that if someone did have the ability to obtain all of these technological bits and pieces, they should have the engineering knowledge to put them together in a way that would perform better than this craft does. The more we learn about this ship, the more questions we end up with."

What made Aki smile after all this was seeing Maya smiling as she gazed at the ship's outer hull. The woman was visibly taken by this mystery, a sentiment that the Asian had to admit she shared. "Getting all of this equipment together might be impossible in this dimension, but it might be a great deal easier to accomplish in another."

"Agreed," Maya said. "The cloaking device was only one of several other interesting pieces of equipment I discovered inside. One such piece of technology was a pin-point gravitational field generator powerful enough to breach the fabric of spacetime. The process is rather crude and limited as to its capabilities, but it would most certainly allow a ship to open a rift between two very specific dimensions."

"A poor man's D-Drive," Misaki noted. "Fits perfectly with the rest of this ship. Everything appears to have a very specific function, a function that is unfortunately made more limited due to the interaction of the various technologies that were never meant to operate together.  At least it does confirm that we are dealing with someone from another dimension, a simple fact that I am sure Captain Iverson will very much appreciate."

"Finding out that you are not *alone* is not such a bad thing," the Shillian mused to herself, realizing too late that she had done so louder than she had intended to.  Seeing the puzzled expression on Aki's face, Maya quickly added, "I believe we have gathered enough data to report to Captain Iverson." It was easy to see that the ANUBIS' CSciO was desperately wanting to change the subject and the Asian woman saw no reason to deny this.

"I agree, we do have a great deal of data, but that's about it," Mitsiba said. "Captain Iverson will be quick to point out that that we have more questions than answers."

Maya smiled. "Isn't that always the case?"

The two CSciO looked at one another for a few seconds before nodding their heads, picking up their equipment before leaving the shuttle bay.

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant Misaki 'Aki' Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M17-A015: USS ANUBIS: Ya'Han: 35012.1710 ("Let's Move")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Let's Move"
[previous post were (ANU) "Emotional Overflow" / (BAS) "Confirming The Mystery"]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Landing Bay
Stardate: 35012.1710

As the Sec/Tac, it was her job to take the lead and make sure that nothing got in their way as they tried to reach the 'Winnebago with Wings'. Ya'Han was not expecting there to be any trouble as everyone in the busy bay was preoccupied with their own affairs, moving cargo on or off whatever relic of a ship had survived the journey to this forsaken place.  As they moved into the crowd though, the Nylaan noticed that they were drawing a little more attention than expected.  The more she met their curious gazes, the more she realized that it was not them but rather her who was the focus of this undesired scrutiny.

"Ya'Han!" Xana whispered with force. "Your hair."

As the Nylaan turned her head to look at the Bolian/Human woman, Ya'Han noticed a several strands of brightly colored red hair float into her field of vision indicating the one thing that had caught the people's attention. After closing her eyes for a second in order to better concentrate on what she needed to do, the red-haired Sec/Tac of the ANUBIS transformed into the black-haired Agent of the station, someone that no one wanted to have to deal with.

Once the transformation of her hair was complete, Ya'Han looked at Xana. "I'm sorry, I was distracted."

"There is more than enough around here to distract anyone," the Ambassador said. "Let's move! We are not far from the ship and finding our way home back to the ANUBIS."

"That is part of the problem," Ya'Han muttered under her breath, the expression on her face summoning her friend Sonja to her side almost instantly.

"What is going on 'rainbow-girl'? I would have thought that us finally going home would be something good. Let's face it, we are well overdue for something good to finally come our way."

"Going home is not the problem," the Sec/Tac said. "I am just worried about Jayson and what he is going to feel when he sees me. Things have not been the smoothest between us lately."

"No! Really? I hadn't noticed," Sonja teased. "Listen, the man is nauseatingly in love with you. He's nothing more than a love-struck puppy who wags his tail the moment he catches a hint of your scent or hears you coming around the corner. I am sure that you have realized that he is desperately wants you to show him some love back. I understand that spending time with that clone of his made things difficult, maybe more so than it should have, but the reality of the situation is that Jayson, the real one, truly loves you and has been doing his best to give you the room he thought you needed.  When we do get back, he will be thrilled to see you, and I am sure that he would be beside himself if you were happy to see him too."

"When did you become a Ship's Counselor?" The now black-haired Nylaan asked while glancing over her shoulder at the woman currently holding that title.

"Adriana is busy puppy sitting," the CEO said looking at the small canine firmly held in the woman's arms. "Looks like she has her hands full at the moment," Sonja added with a chuckle.

Ya'Han smiled. "Let's keep moving, we are almost there."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Setting: SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Observation Platform
Stardate: 35012.1715

The black-haired Agent stood next to her employer, an expression of disapproval engraved on her face. "Are you sure that this is a wise course of action?"

Hel slowly turned her head to look at the woman standing next to her. "I am far more certain that this is a *wiser* course of action when compared to you questioning my orders. If you have issues with this, maybe you should go and see Stella. I am sure that she will have something to cure all of your uncertainties, permanently."

The mentioned of "The Executioner" was more than enough to silence Han, no matter what her thoughts were on this or any other matter.

"With all due respect," Krokus said as he walked up to the two ladies who were watching the scene unfold in the bay below. "I hope that your plan works. I would truly hate to lose my ship. It may not be much, but it's mine and in the end that's what counts the most in this crappy universe we live in."

"Relax," Hel sighed. "Both your ship and your girlfriends will be coming back," the woman paused and as a smile slowly formed on her lips. "In fact, they may be coming back sooner than you might have hoped for."

"How can you be so sure?" Krokus asked trying not to sound overly confused.

"I have not made it this far by not planning ahead and preparing for all possible contingencies. Things are already happening to ensure they will be coming back and bring with them the one thing I need to see my plan be successful. Now, go down there and make sure they make it back to their dimension safe and sound. We would not want anything to happen to our beloved Warrior, Crown and Agent."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Hanali Han

Chief of Security / Chief Tactical Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M13-B017: USS BASTET: Gemma: 35012.1730 ("Intel War")
=-=
"Intel War"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Let's Move" / (BAS) "Confirming The Mystery"]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 35012.1730

The slightest noise from the medical examination could be heard throughout the medical facility. Everyone was as quiet as could be, but not for the same reasons.  Doctor Andersson and Bruxa were focused on identifying every physical characteristics of their patient, no matter how small. Cmdr. Valentine was observing the entire process with great intensity. The expression on her face indicated wonder and curiosity at the unknown woman's uncanny resemblance to their Captain.  Ensign Enel stood at the ready should their *guest* decide to become something more problematic. It was his duty to expect her to no longer play the role of the willing and accommodating subject. There had been more than enough tests imposed on the patient to justify such a possibility. This left Cmdr. Shar'El who was staring at the woman through narrowed eyes. The Ullian was trying to telepathically pick up anything that might prove useful.  All of this took place under the watchful gaze of the BASTET's ILO. In this near complete silence, she was trying to make sense of not just the current mystery but also some of the things her counterpart from the ANUBIS had said.

It was only recently that Gemma had learned to see herself in a more accurate manner. The realization of her possessing a multitude of personalities had been quite a shock. That they all constantly fought for control in her mind had also not been something easily accepted. Thanks to Zub and their little adventure in the holodeck the first steps in understand all of this had been taken. The ILO had been allowed to see something about who she really was. This was a revelation that she was still having a great deal of trouble coming to terms with. Those troubles were compounded by the fact that Shar'El knew a great deal about these personalities and their individual tendencies. What truly bothered Anya was that during their earlier conversation, the Russian Huntress had found it impossible to assert her presence. The goal then had been to properly challenge the raven-haired ILO of the ANUBIS. Maybe she might have taught her a lesson or two in the process. A possibility that seemed to please several of those previously mentioned personalities.

Being unable to do this, Gemma was forced to simply consider the ramifications of all this. What sort of power did Shar'El hold over her? More importantly, what purpose would be served by having the ILO of another ship possess such control over another ILO? Had this been something unforeseen or had Admiral Koniki planned this from the very start?

All those questions were put on hold when Doctor Bruxa made an announcement. "Looks like we are all done here. We have gone through every possible test we could come up with. And before you ask, yes, we ran all of those tests twice, just to make sure the readings were accurate."

Doctor Andersson added. "There is nothing more for us to learn here.”

"There is always *more* that can be learned. I am sure that there are other tests you can perform." Shar'El was not happy. Her inability to pierce the woman's mental defenses and discipline proved to be quite frustrating. The statement made Cmdr. Valentine glare sternly in the direction of the other ExO. The ILO had been permitted to be here as a curtesy, nothing more. No matter her rank, she raven-haired woman held no authority on the BASTET or on any member of its crew.  With a nod of her head, Gemma understood what she wanted to happen next.

The ILO walked towards the patient now sitting on the examination bed. "Thank you for your patience and compliance. If you would come with us, we will take you to see Cpt. Iverson."  While saying this, Gemma had motioned for their CoS to join her. Ens. Enel did not hesitate to proceed as instructed, his imposing 7 foot, 250lbs frame stopping right next to the much small 5'6" and 155lbs auburn-haired woman.

The Captain's doppelganger slid off the examination bed and smiled. At 5'7", the blonde-haired woman stood unconcerned by her would-be escorts. "I can see why Selene likes to have the two of you here. I suspect that things get done rather quickly when you two are around."

Neither Zub nor Gemma fell for this obvious verbal trap meant to have them say something revealing about the BASTET or their Captain. Instead, the Voth only ruffled some of his scales while thoughts of Shinral washed through the mind of the ILO. In a situation like this, having the Reman bodyguard might have been an interesting development but it was not to be.  Following a very quick glance in Shar'El's direction, the security duo invited the woman to follow them.

[/\] Bridge to Sickbay. [/\] It was the Captain. [/\] Progress report. [/\]

"All tests have been completed," Cmdr. Valentine replied. "We are heading to the bridge now. Our guest is being exceptionally accommodating."

[/\] Bring her to the Observation Lounge. Lt. Mitshiba and Lt, Cmdr. Maya have also completed their survey of the ship. I want everyone together for the next part. [/\]

"Understood," Valentine acknowledged. With another nod of her head, Enel and Gemma resumed their walk and made their way out into the corridor, the unknown woman walking only a few steps in front of them.

=-=
Rachel Jackie Johnson

Intel Operative
USS BASTET

[The fun is getting to wear multiple disguises and getting to explore multiple personalities and bring them to life. - Jenna Fischer]
M13-B018: USS BASTET: Enel: 35012.1735 ("Testing The Wind")
=-=
“Testing The Wind”
Previous posts: (ANU) “Let’s Move” by Hanali / (BAS) “Intel War” by Rachel

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 5 Corridor
Stardate: 35012.1735

As they followed the mysterious blond copy of Captain Selene Iverson out of Sickbay, the Sec/Tac Ensign Zub Enel reached out a scaly hand to block Lt. Gemma’s exit. Her copper-colored ringlets fell across her shoulders when she frowned up at the 7-foot high Security Chief for an explanation. The male and female security detail was also halted behind his long arm.

Gemma whispered upward, “It is not good precedent to let her lead us like that. This is our ship. She is not our captain.”

Zub nodded. He brought up his other hand and pointed two fingers first at his golden eyes and then down the corridor at the woman striding away from them, a silent signal to watch their guest. Gemma’s frown smoothed out. She guessed what Zub was up to.

He watched the flaxen stranger stride a few more steps before he dropped his arm and signaled for the ILO and Security detail to follow.

The alien woman strode passed the lift that had taken them from the Shuttle Bay to the Sickbay deck.

“Interesting,” Zub Enel said softly.

Fair-haired with Capt. Iverson’s face, the interloper headed confidently along the curving corridor passed the door to the gymnasium. Grunting and slapping on mats came through the open doorway, sounds of hand-to-hand practice. She smiled into the room and gave her long golden tresses a little toss that sent them into a silky cascade over her red uniform shoulder.

A few steps passed the gym she turned at her waist while she pointed a perfectly manicured finger ahead. “There’s a lift that goes directly to the Bridge.”

Zub Enel smiled. His resonant voice boomed in the corridor. “Correct.” After the woman turned her head forward and continued toward the turbolift at the far end of the curving corridor, Zub hurried to catch up.

Gemma jogged to catch up to him, but glanced into the gym. Men and women in white martial arts gis with colored belts were frozen in various fight poses. They stared puzzled out the door. She caught up with Zub who was now a few steps behind the visitor. The two guards trailed close behind them.

Gemma said to the woman in a conversational tone, “It’s interesting you know your way around our ship.”

The faux Selene looked back smiling. “Of course,” she said with great confidence. "I am not just another pretty face," she added with a playful wink that took both the ILO and Sec/Tac by surprise. The blond hair framing the familiar visage of their captain was already hard enough to get used to, but to see the woman so willing to display emotions was true shocking.

Gemma said more pointedly, “It’s a shame we don’t know more about *you*.”

Her grey eyes locked onto Gemma’s steady blue-eyed stare. “I know you have a million questions, but since we’re having a meeting with your Captain, why don’t we wait until then. Trust me. All will be revealed.”

The Security Chief felt the fine down between his scales stir. He didn’t like the ambiguity of whether her answers would be to the BASTET’s benefit or peril. He masked his concern behind a solicitous, “Please allow my guards to escort you in proper fashion for a dignitary.”

The security pair stepped passed the ILO and Sec/Tac and took up position on either side of the striding visitor. While the three lead the way toward the Bridge turbolift, Zub and Gemma trailed them a few paces.

The entourage passed Transporter Room 3. Zub Enel said to softly to Gemma, “You seem — unhappy — around the ANUBIS ExO / ILO. Is she bothering you?”

Gemma gave a quiet scoff and tossed her coppery ringlets. “Am I ever happy?”

Zub remembered being part of her dream where she could not solve a jigsaw puzzle made of pictures of herself. She still seemed a shattered puzzle of a person. “Your scent is always the same no matter where you are, who you are, or what you are doing, except around her and no one else.” He looked down at her as they walked passed the many doors of the Junior Officers quarters. His golden gaze was not accusing or critical, just filled with concern.

The ANUBIS ExO / ILO Shar’El had matter-of-factly stated that Gemma had no friends and never would. While the towering Voth at her side was not a friend per se, he clearly worked to keep her welfare in mind. Shar’El would laugh in his face if she learned that.

Gemma said a little more sharply than she intended, her voice jogging because her heels suddenly clicked harder on the floor, “Okay, Ensign Super Nose, at first chance I want you to sniff this alien hard enough to make her epilets flap. Tell me anything different.”

“Yes, sir,” he said, putting his three-fingered hands in the small of his back. They caught up to the woman and guards at the turbolift.

The Bridge turbolift was roomier for five people than the Shuttle Bay’s had been. It sang a single soaring note while taking them quickly to the Bridge. Inertial dampers kept them from flying into the ceiling when the lift halted and opened.

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35012.1740

“Ah,” the Faux Selene exclaimed as she stepped out. She started toward the center of the Bridge, her eyes wide open. Her gaze swept the whole room. The main viewer showed a static sprinkling of stars that indicated the BASTET was either out of warp or someone had put up a random star field to obscure their position. Forward of the empty Captain’s chair, Lt. Jayson Stark was half turned at the Ops station, obviously thinking he had heard the captain’s voice. The hulking, catlike Lt. A’Janni at Helm looked their way too. Both men’s curious gazes were changing over to stares at the stunning blond.

“This way,” said the female guard who had interposed herself between the woman and further access to the Bridge.

“Of course,” the woman said with a smile and followed the guard’s direction toward the Observation Lounge.

Gemma’s hand, warm and dry, had closed firmly on Zub’s scaly wrist after they exited the turbolift. He watched the dazzling alien enter the Observation Lounge. Without prompting he said, “Truly like the Captain. Except no tea recently enough for me to detect.”

“Hair?”

“No peroxides, bleach, Tellurian Color Assassins or anything like that, if that is what you mean. Seems to be natural.”

“You found absolutely nothing whatsoever unusual about her scent?”

He gave a slight shrug. “She is not the least bit tense. Which is odd, considering we caught her shadowing us, poked and prodded her, put guards on her, and otherwise showed we do not trust her. She is absolutely calm.” He was looking down at Gemma by then.

Gemma returned his gaze, her blue eyes thoughtful. “Calm, like everything is going to plan.” She huffed out a small sigh. “Shar’El was right. We gotta find a way rattle her cage.” She turned and headed into the Observation Lounge. Zub stooped and followed her in.

=-=
David Michael Inverso

Chief Security and Tactical Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977

“There is no terror in the bang, only in the anticipation of it.”
- Alfred Hitchcock
M17-A016: USS ANUBIS: Lopez: 35012.1745 ("Easier Said Than Done")
-=-=-
"Easier Said Than Done"
[Previous post: (ANU) "Let's Move" & (BAS) "Testing The Wind"]
-=-=-

Setting:  EAGLE-5 (AKA "The Winnebago With Wings")
Stardate: 35012.1745

Making it onto the odd-looking ship proved to be much easier than the Counselor could have expected or even hoped for. Even D'Artagnan seemed pleased, his tail wagging like mad as he remained in Adriana's tight embrace. All that was left was for the team to leave this station and find their way back to their home dimension. Judging by the frantic gestures and repeated huffing of their Chief Engineer though, it was clear that this would prove easier said than done.

Adriana held onto D'Artagnan just a little tighter as Xana and Sonja went into a screaming match, each one pointing out as to what the other could or should have done. Normally, as the Ship's Counselor, Lopez would have jumped right into the middle of such chaos in an attempt to get those involved to resolve the issue without resorting to raising their voices and name calling.  This alo proved to be easier said than done as the woman sitting in a corner of the odd ship found herself unable to get. Actually, it would be more accurate to state that she was unwilling to do so, her body and muscles more than able to perform the simple task.

The CNS closed her eyes as Ya'Han joined the verbal confrontation. The hardships they all had endured during their stay on this forsaken station had taken its toll causing the patience of the Ambassador, Chief of Security and Chief Engineer to be all but gone.  Adriana eventually opened her eyes and looked down upon the puppy cradled in her arms to see him with his ears down. Whatever was going on, he did not like it, and to be perfectly honest neither did she, but that feeling was not the only thing they shared at that specific moment. Neither was able to do anything about the situation other than try to stay out of the way and make themselves as small as possible.

Their efforts to stay out of everyone's way did little to soften the impact of the words and accusations that were being fired at a rapidly growing rate and intensity. Everyone was pointing at the others with whatever fault they could find, be them real or not, and despite none of these being directly targeting the Counselor, Adriana felt more and more responsible for the whole mess.

"ENOUGH!" Lopez screamed at the top of her lungs, barely edging out the loudness of the exchange between the other three women. Xana, Sonja and Ya'Han stopped in mid-sentence to look with stunned surprise and at the sitting woman who was now in tears.

"I'm sorry..." Xana began as she lowered herself onto one knee. "We allowed the frustration of the situation to get the better of us. We are just too close to let anything get in the way of our escape."

"This place has managed to get under our skins," Sonja added. "This station is like a bad dream, and after dealing with the Lokustaar I think we all have had our fill of reali-life nightmares."

"Add to that the fact that we are in another dimension where we have come across people who are *us*, and there is no real surprise that we lost our cool," Ya'Han said before the verbal storm that had been raging inside of the EAGLE-5 was replaced by a calmness that everyone took a brief moment to enjoy.

"We are all going to be fine," the Ambassador said taking hold of the Junior Ambassador's hand and giving it a light reassuring squeeze. "Thank you for bringing us back."

"What do we do next?" Paquette asked. "This ship, and I use the term loosely, is not going anywhere. The power converter is not responding to any signal, and that's just one of several dozen problems that would require a few hours to figure out."

"We do not have a few hours," the Chief of Security said, her hair once again as red as fire. "The fact that we have not been discovered is still something that I consider to be an impossibility onto itself. We need to get out of here, now. If we cannot use this ship to accomplish that, then we need to find another way."

"Ladies, ladies," Krokus said as he walked in. "You should not be talking about her like that, she does have feelings you know," the man said as he lovingly caressed the nearest part of the ship he could reach.

In the blink of an eye, Ya'Han had jumped onto the man and brought him crashing down onto the floor, his arms pulled behind his back to ensure that he would not present any danger to anyone or try to run away.

"What are you doing here?" Bonviva asked, finding the scene rather amusing.

"OUCH! Is that a way to treat someone who is here to help you get back home?"

"You brought us here in the first place," the redhead Engineer hissed. "Why would you want to bring us back now?"

"I'm just a misunderstood nice kind of guy," Krokus said causing Ya'Han to tighten her hold on him. "OUCH! Alright, alright. I have been asked to bring you back. Having two Warriors, two Agents and two Crowns on this station is creating a lot of issues that many would rather not have to deal with."

Xana considered the man's answer for a few seconds before she nodded to Ya'Han. "Let him go."

"How are you planning tp accomplish that?" Sonja asked as she carefully watched the man return to his feet. "This pile of junk is not going anywhere. Nothing is working."

Krokus just smiled. "You need to know how to treat this lady," he said heading to the front of the ship. "She is like any other woman in the multiverse, there are certain things that she does not like, and some that make her as willing and ready to please as could be. You just need to know which is which."  The man sat at the flight station, spent a few minutes fiddling with the controls before the ship suddenly came to life.  "See, it's all about the touch!" He added putting his hands up and wiggling his fingers.

"Well, you better take us home, or I am going to instruct my friend here to show you what her touch can do," Sonja said pointing to Ya'Han.

Xana smiled and sat next to Adriana. "I think I will join you in watching this little show unfold. I think they have things well under control."

Adriana nodded and returned the Ambassador's smile, both women petting D'Artagnan as they watched Sonja and Ya'Han keep a very close watch on their would-be savior.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Lieutenant JG Adriana Lopez [Access Character BIO for Adriana Lopez]
Ship's Counselor & Junior Ambassador
USS ANUBIS
M13-B019: USS BASTET: Iverson: 35012.1745 ("Two-Way Mirror")
---
"Two-Way Mirror"
(Previous Post: (ANU) "Easier Said Than Done" / (BAS) "Testing The Wind")
---

Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 1, Observation Lounge 
Stardate: 35012.1745

Selene Iverson, Commanding Officer of the USS BASTET stood at the far end of the conference room, her attention cast far beyond the large windows that lined the exterior wall. Normally, the Captain would be sitting in the chair located at the near end of the table, closest to the main door, allowing her to greet people as they walked in, but this time there was someone else sitting there.

"Are you certain you want me here?" Captain Morningstar asked. The man did not sound concerned or even troubled, he simply wanted to make sure that Captain Iverson had thought this through.

"This mission, that of rescuing the missing members of your crew, is yours far more than it is mine," Iverson stated, her gaze locked on a specific distant constellation. "My crew and I are simply providing the means to make it possible."

"I meant my sitting here, in *your* chair," Erik clarified suspecting that Selene knew this already but had decided to play coy with him for reasons that were now and likely remain her own.

"I am sure," Selene confirmed with certainty, her voice as calm and unemotional as ever. Although her personnel file clearly showed her as being of mixed Terran/Dinaali descent, it was moments like this that made many who dealt with her on a regular basis wonder if there was not some Vulcan hiding somewhere in her distant family history.

Selene kept her eyes focused on the distant set of stars when she heard the door to the Observation Lounge hiss open. To say that she was curious about the woman who could have been her twin was a massive understatement. Since the moment the blonde-haired woman appeared on the main view screen, countless questions and theories had made their home in her mind. This situation demanded to be investigated to the fullest possible extent, the problem so far though was that this alter ego had been the one controlling things and Iverson would make sure that this ended here and now.

"Captain Iver..." The woman with the flowing blonde hair stopped mid word as she saw someone other than the person she was expecting to see upon her entrance. "Captain Morningstar?" There was a momentary pause. "That is quite an unexpected surprise. When did you become the Commanding Officer of the BASTET?"

"He is not," Selene stated, again keeping her attention on the starscape beyond the large windows.

There was a moment of fleeting hesitation from the latest arrival which was quickly followed by a smile, further indicating that the differences between the two women extended far beyond the length and colour of their hair. "Of course, Ambassador Bonviva, Lieutenant Commander Paquette and Lieutenant Ya'Han are officers aboard the ANUBIS, so it makes sense that he would be here. Having him sit in your chair though was a very well calculated move, one that I suspect was meant to throw me off-guard for the interrogation that is about to take place. Well played Selene. Well played indeed."

Erik remained seated as the mysterious woman fully stepped into the room followed by Ensign Enel, Lieutenant Gemma, Lieutenant Commander Shar'El and Commander Valentine. The Captain and First Officer of the ANUBIS shared a quick silent glance, a wordless exchange that made it clear that they were both here as observers and nothing more, at least for the time being.

"I am not here to conduct an interrogation," Iverson clarified finally turning to look at the woman, "but I do have a few questions that I would appreciate you answering. Let us start with something simple. What should we call you or are you happy with us referring to you as 'that strange blonde-haired woman' or as 'the wannabe Captain Iverson'?"

"'Fake' and 'imposter' have also been terms used by some members of the crew to describe you," Commander Valentine added as she walked by the woman to join the Captain at the other end of the room, glaring at their guest they enter time.

The woman playfully smiled. As unsettling as this situation was meant to be for her, the blonde-haired Iverson appeared unphased. Looking at the expression on her face, some might even believe that she found the whole affair amusing. "Just call me Fiona," she replied drawing a look of indignation from Sarena who did not like the fact that out of all the possible names she could have selected, their 'guest' had chosen the middle name of their captain.

"I only have one other question for you *Fiona*, why are you here?" Selene politely asked, the tone of her question firm and direct without the slightest hint of emotion.

"I am here to help you," Fiona said nonchalantly as she finally took a seat and directed her gaze onto Erik. "Your missing officers is just the tip of the iceberg. Your problems run a lot deeper."

"Explain!" Gemma demanded with insistence. Although Captain Iverson had said that she was not performing an interrogation, the ILO saw no reason why she could not perform such a task, especially given that such duties clearly fell within her jurisdiction.

"Have you ever heard of 'The Confederacy'?" Fiona asked, meeting the quizzical gazes of each and every officer in the room before continuing. "The Confederacy is an organization loosely resembling your Federation, but this one does everything it can to extend its influence to other worlds, regardless of what dimension they may be located in. Now, the Confederacy possesses limited trans-dimensional capabilities, but it has still managed to get its people onto several other EARTH-like worlds."

"We just finished beating the Lokustaar," Shar'El sighed. "Somehow I doubt that whatever this Confederacy can throw our way is going to match what those nightmares had at their disposal."

"You are quite correct, Commander," Fiona grinned. "I was most fortunate, or should I saw unfortunate, to see what the Lokustaar are capable of, and compared to that, the Confederacy is nothing. That said, you must keep one specific thing in mind; the Lokustaar were ambitious and deadly. Their goal was to subjugate the entire galaxy, pitting worlds against worlds and killing whoever or whatever got in their way.  The Confederacy, luckily for us all, is much less aggressive. Their goal is to infiltrate the population of a few planets usually using some sort of made up threat to make things chaotic enough so that no one will notice a few extra hundred people suddenly appearing out of nowhere."

"Made up threat?" Gemma asked continuing with the unofficial interrogation.

"I believe that some of your people have already discovered that part of their plan," Fiona said, a playful smile still dancing on her lips. "A robot army?"

"If this Confederacy plans on using a robot army to create chaos to hide the arrival of several hundred of their people into our dimension, why capture some of our officers?" Commander Valentine asked drawing a subtle nod of agreement from Captain Morningstar who was thinking the exact same thing.

"You of all people should understand that each dimension is unique. People may physically look alike but their biology can be completely different. There is also the possibility that there is some unseen biological component that could derail their plans," the blonde-haired woman explained.

"So, they take people from their target dimension and bring them back in order to study them," Enel theorized aloud, not seeing any harm in joining in on the interrogation of the woman they had escorted to this location.

"Biological, psychological and social differences are all carefully observed in order to see if an infiltration is possible and what is required to make their people not be easily detected because of something stupid," Fiona continued. "You have to realize that this is not the first time they have done this. Also, bringing people over gives them the ability to gather Intel."

"We understand perfectly," Selene acknowledged.

"So what is your angel in this?" The ILO of the BASTET pressed, Gemma performing her role as an interrogator to the best of her abilities given the limited range of what she could and could not do at this time. "Clearly you are not from *this* dimension, so why help us?"

"Call it misplaced loyalty," the woman said, her smile gradually fading. "I was sent ahead as a scout, as I usually am. There is something about the way I am, the way I think that makes me a perfect candidate for traveling between dimensions. I guess it is out lot throughout the multiverse," she said looking at Selene.  "I have done so many times and encountered myself more times than I care to remember, and each time I find myself struggling. There are times when my other self is a loner whom I could care less about, then there are the others," Fiona said as she continued to look directly at Captain Iverson. "The more I learned about *you* and your crew, the more I found myself becoming envious. Of all the women called Selene Fiona Iverson out there, you are the one with the best life."

"There is nothing easy or simple about my life," Selene pointed out with a Vulcan-like coldness.

A bright smile formed on the lips of the blonde woman, larger than anything that had been there before. "I never said that your life was easy or simple, I said that your life was the best I had ever seen. You are the Commanding Officer of a remarkable ship and have the respect and admiration of not only your crew but of other high-ranking officers," she turned to look at Erik as she said this.  "I just thought that the Confederacy could handle not getting their people into this dimension. There would be disappointments, but they would sooner rather than later turn their eyes to another dimension and resume their work. That is why I was following you, trying to find a way to explain this to you in a way that you would accept."

"Let us say that we believe you," Captain Iverson said. "What would you have do about it?"

"The Confederacy needs to be shown that this dimension is more than capable of defending itself. My report on how the Federation handled the Lokustaar will go a long way, but they also need to see your resolve first-hand. That is why your ship needs to go to my dimension and make it clear to everyone that you are not the type to allow this kind of underhanded business to happen unchallenged."

"That gives us a lot to think about," Commander Valentine said. "Captain?"  Selene simply nodded her head and turned her attention back to the distant stars visible through the large window.  "Ensign Enel, please escort *Fiona* to some *guest* quarters. she is to remain there under guard until further notice.

"Aye, aye, Commander," The Voth acknowledged before inviting the woman to step back out of the Conference Lounge.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 7, Quarters
Stardate: 35012.1810

"Thank you gorgeous," Fiona said to the Voth chief of Security who provided the escort. Enel just fluffed his scales and closed the door between them leaving their guest alone in the room meant for a single crewmember.

After having given the rather spartan accommodations a thorough once over, Fiona exposed her left arm and forcefully tapped it causing a strange biochemical reaction to create what appeared to be some sort of control console on her arm. As she studied the readouts, another smile formed on her lips as she confirmed that her ship was still fully operational and that no one had picked up the ability of her ship to create a dimensional bubble that could, in theory, bring the USS BASTET to her dimension should Captain Iverson decide on a course of action other than what the blonde-haired woman had recommended.

---
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) 
M17-A017: USS ANUBIS: Stark: 35012.1815 ("Waiting and Talking")
"Waiting and Talking"
[previous (ANU) "Easier Said Than Done" / (BAS) "Two-Way Mirror"]

[/\]

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35012.1815

The meeting was over, and he was at the Operations station wondering what could have been said to leave so many people with such long faces. Back on the ANUBIS Stark would not have hesitated to asked Captain Morningstar as to what had happened. As the Chief of Operations, it was part of his responsibilities to prepare the ship for what might come to pass. As much as his role on the BASTET was the same, Jayson did not feel comfortable enough to approach Captain Iverson or even Commander Valentine and ask.  If either one of them deemed it necessary for him to know, he was sure that they would pass on whatever information was required, in the meantime all he needed to do was to ensure that the ship operated at the highest possible level.

"What do you think happened in there?" The Caitian asked from the Flight Control station. "The Captain is back in her Ready Room along with your Captain while our First Officer left the bridge looking like she had somewhere important to be at followed by your ExO/ILO.  I would guess that something bad was said in there but we have not been given any directives. I just don't like us sitting like this, doing nothing other than waiting for who-knows-what."

"My guess is that although the meeting with Miss 'someone-else-than" Iverson ended, the story is far from over. She might have said something that requires them to look into it more closely or she slipped and proved herself to be someone who could not be trusted. That would account for why Enel escorted her out looking like he was ready to rip someone's head clear off."

"I doubt that," A'Janni said. "First, Zub is not the type to take people's heads off without a very valid reason, and even then. Second, did you notice the way she smiled when she first stepped onto the bridge? Let's forget for a moment that I have never seen the Captain smile that way and just focus on anyone walking about the way she did. That woman displayed a sense of assurance and certainty that is not common. She knows something, something important, something very significant. The question is did she tell the others about it?"

"Well, by the time we know what she knows, it might be too late," Stark said. "Neither Captain Morningstar nor Commander Shar'El said anything when they came back onto the bridge before vanishing into the Ready Room."

"The Captain knows what she is doing," Mitshiba said from the science station. "She has a lot of data to analyse in order to create a more complete picture of what it is we are dealing with. The ANUBIS, thanks to its Ablative Armor and other defensive capabilities can afford to rush into the unknown, the BASTET is not able to do the same. Experience has taught us repeatedly that it is best to get all of the data we can before we even think of making any sort of move. The arrival of the Captain's doppelganger changed everything and now we have to re-evaluate all possible course of actions, old and new alike."

"Kind of hard to argue with that," Jayson shrugged.

"I was not expecting you to argue with simple facts," Misaki said. "Do you usually argue with your CSciO?"

"Maya?!?" Jayson laughed. "I would never dare argue with her."

"Because she is always right?" The BASTET's CSciO asked with a chuckle.

"No," Stark quickly corrected. "Because any argument would end several hours later following a very lengthy explanation as to why a specific point of view is wrong when compared to another, and neither one of those points of view would have anything to do with what started the argument." Jayson looked at Misaki and smiled. "Don't you dare tell me that it would not happen that way. You have spent enough time with her to know that I am right. She is an amazing woman and a brilliant scientist, but when it comes to giving any sort of verbal explanation, she operates on a completely different level."

"She just thinks of a lot of things all at the same time," Mitshiba said in defense of a fellow scientist whom she clearly respected before the two officers in the middle of this conversation ended by them sharing a smile.

Seeing Misaki smile that way caused Jayson to remember how Ya'Han used to smile at him, a smile that made him feel indestructible and weak at the knees all at the same time. He had felt as if his world had come to a complete standstill following the fallout between the two of them, but thanks to Satella and now Misaki, he understood that life and the rest of the universe had not stopped.

It was a flashing indicator on his console that drew his attention back onto his duties. "Long-range sensors are picking up some sort of localized disruption in the fabric of space-time," Jayson reported.

"It's a dimensional rift," Misaki stated. "It is located very near the surface of ORION." The CSciO analyzed the data a little further before completing her report. "It is located exactly where you reported those strange buildings and the underground base. Looks like a ship came through. The dimensional distortion would shield it from the planetary sensor net but using that kind of camouflage is not going to do anything to hide them from our sensors. The advantage of being on board a vessel equipped for dimensional travel."

"Bridge to Captain Iverson," Jayson began. "Long range sensors have picked up a small dimensional disturbance at a location matching that of the underground base discovered on ORION. It would seem that a ship has just crossed over into our dimension."

=/\= Lieutenant A'Janni, set an intercept course for that ship, =/\= the Captain ordered, the rest of her commands would be given directly as she rushed back onto the bridge. "Lieutenant Stark, bring the ship to yellow alert and have all senior officers report back to their stations immediately."

[/\]
Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant Jayson Stark [Access Character BIO for Jayson Stark]
Chief of Operations
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M17-A018: USS ANUBIS: Ya'Han: 35012.1825 ("Moving and Talking")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Moving and Talking"
[previous post were (ANU) "Waiting and Talking" / (BAS) "Two-Way Mirror"]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: EAGLE-5, Passenger area
Stardate: 35012.1825

For a ship as decrepit looking as the "Winnebago with Wings" gave the impression to be, it could certainly fly when the situation called for it. The Sec/Tac was not really impressed, their situation making impossible for her to focus on the performance of the small craft they were on. Judging by the expression on Sonja's face, the Chief Engineer was even less impressed, although the Nylaan was relatively certain that the reason for this was much more based in Engineering as the ship performed well above what any mechanically minded person would even come close to expecting.

"Welcome back to your home dimension," Krokas said, trying his best to sound as friendly and cordial as he could. "Now, are you certain that you do not want me to drop you off on ORION?"

"Quite certain," the Ambassador said as she gave her shipmates a thorough visual examination to make sure that everyone was alright. "I believe I speak for us all when I say that we have had our fill of that place. Just take us to the nearest Federation starbase, we can find our way back to a more hospitable place from there."

"Are you sure?" The pilot asked. "ORION is a lot closer. You would be on solid ground in a matter of minutes."

"We are sure," Ya'Han confirmed with a snap, her hair back to the bright red color she was sporting before. "Why are you pushing so hard for us to go to ORION? You have someone there waiting to take care of us so that we leave no traces behind?"

"I would never do something like that to you ladies," Krokas said, sounding as charming as always which of course did not help in any way sell his honesty, quite to the contrary. By now everyone on board knew better than to take their eyes off of him or to trust anything he said.  "I just wanted to make sure that you were all perfectly certain. The trek to the nearest Federation starbase may take a while."

"Trapped in a small room on that station or trapped in a small room on this ship, not much of a difference," Sonja said sighing. "At least here we are closer to home than we had been before, and that is more than enough for me at this time."

"I wonder how Han is doing back on the station?" Ya'Han said as she eased herself down for what would likely be a long and uncomfortable trek.

"Really?" Sonja huffed. "You worry about your 'sister from another dimension' all you want, I for one am glad that the distance between 'The Jester' and I is quickly increasing."

"Sonju was referred to as 'The Crown'," Xana said wondering how the CEO could have forgotten such a fact.

"You call her what you want and I will call her what I saw her be," the redhead laughed. "A fool by any other name is just as stupid. If I don't hear about her ever again it will be too soon."

"I for one am looking forward to returning to Federation territory," Xana said. "There is a lot we have to report on, and the sooner the better."

"Don't say that too loudly," Adriana whispered. "Our benevolent pilot might take that as an indication to turn the ship around and bring us back to ORION. As I recall, the Federation does have an Ambassadorial office on the planet."

The Bolian/Human woman rolled her violet eyes. "Don't remind me," Xana lamented. "The only thing that is *Federation* there is communicator-sized logo affixed to the wall above the entrance. The ORION government was never overly fond of having a Federation office on their world and did so just to keep the politicians quiet."

Sonja laughed. "I suspect that it would take a lot more than a simple communicator-sized logo to keep you quiet," the Chief Engineer said in good humor.

"Ladies," Krokas said, his voice cracking with nervousness. "We may have a problem."

"What did you do?" The Sec/Tac demanded as she rushed to the man's side.

"Nothing!" He claimed in his defense. "All I'm doing is flying my ship. The problem is *that*," he said pointing to a minuscule dot blinking on a small screen that Ya'Han could only guess was some sort of tactical display.

"If I am reading this right, there is a ship heading our way on a rapid intercept course," the Nylaan said, her hair as red as could be.

"What kind of ship?" Ambassador Bonviva asked. It was always a good idea to know what you were dealing with before jumping to any sort of conclusions.

"The sensors on this ship are as close to useless as they get," the Sec/Tac said. "Based on what I am seeing, it is a pure miracle that the sensors are picking anything up. I could not tell you if the ship was an Orion freighter or a Ferengi Cruiser."

"Wait!" Sonja jumped in. "You mean there is a difference between an Orion freighter and a Ferengi Cruiser? I thought both did nothing more than carry junk and trash from one planet to another."  Ya'Han actually smiled, even if only for a few seconds. "What if we tried to contact them? We would be able to identify them once they answered."

"Good idea except for one small detail," Xana said. "If that ship is an ORION freighter or a Ferengi Cruiser, the result will be the same. They will more than likely blow us into subatomic particles the moment they see this ship and don't expect that my claiming to be on board is going to make a difference in that outcome. Actually, it might make it worse as there are several people and factions, some that are even found inside the Federation, that would be more than happy to claim that they were able to ride the galaxy of Ambassador Xana Bonviva. I am afraid that radio silence is our best course of action for the time being."

"Nice to be so widely loved and adored," Sonja sighed as she rolled her eyes at Xana. "Let me see what I can do to increase the resolution of these sensors.  Maybe I could link D'Artagnan's sense of smell to them, might more than triple their range and efficiency."

"Do your best," the Ambassador said clearly ignoring the woman's last statement.  "Ya'Han, see if you can improve this ship’s defensive capabilities."

"Hey!" Krokas objected. "That's my ship you are talking about. No one does anything to it except me."

"We could always use him as a decoy by strapping a high-powered energy generator and tossing him out the nearest airlock," the Sec/Tac suggested.

"Alright, alright," he said throwing his arms up in the air. "This is what I get for being a nice guy and helping you ladies to get back home."

"Get us out of this mess and we will be more than appreciative," the brightly red-haired Nylaan said.  With that said, everyone went to work and did what little they could to prepare for the encounter to come.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Hanali Han

Chief of Security / Chief Tactical Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M13-B020: USS BASTET: Andersson: 35012.1825 ("Preparations")
=-=
"Preparations"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Moving and Talking" by Hanali/ (BAS) "Two-Way Mirror" by Jessica]
=-=
 
Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 35012.1825

When the BASTET, or any ship in the Federation for that matter, was put into combat readiness status, better known as 'red alert', everyone prepared for the worse.  The Engineering staff readied key systems to be used and pushed beyond the limits of their designed functions. The Operations staff on their side readied the crew by placing key personnel where they would likely be need should the situation deteriorate while also checking to make sure that all systems responded as they should. The Security and Tactical staff quickly established security zones and made certain that all weapons and defensive systems were at the ready to be used at a moment's notice. The Medical staff was no different, the personnel quickly setting up to deal with the widest possible range of injuries and casualties, adapting as best they could if they knew what sort of situation they were heading into.

The flashing yellow indicators announced to the crew that the situation was not as dire but that did not stop Doctor Andersson and the rest of her medical staff from rushing about making sure that everything was as ready as could be expected. Being properly prepared could mean the difference between reporting injuries instead of casualties to the Captain and First Officer once the situation came to an end. So, it was to everyone's advantage for the medical teams to be ready for every possibility.

"Are you certain that there is nothing that I can do to help?" Satella asked, the CMO of the ANUBIS finding herself without a specific task to complete while everyone else clearly had a long list of things to do.

"I appreciate the offer," Sofia said as she checked the results of the diagnostic sequence on the biobeds' medical scanners. "I am sure that I would feel the same way if we were on the ANUBIS and in your sickbay. You have your staff assigned to very specific tasks in situations like this, do you not?"

"I do," Doctor Bruxa reluctantly admitted before taking several steps back in order to make sure that she would not be in anyone's way.

"Don't worry," Nic gently whispered as she slides up to the visibly saddened Satella. "She gets that way all the time. That is part of being a Doctor in charge of not just a department but also of an entire crew."

Satella gently nodded her head to show that she was understanding what the Counselor was trying to explain. "She cares for them and wants to make sure that they are all as safe as possible."

"Being the Chief Medical Officer of a starship is not an easy task," the Trill woman said, "but you already knew that. Both of you have experienced loses that have helped shape your professional perspective and your need to save lives."

"Sofia was involved in the destruction and cleanup of Paris," Bruxa said, her sadness quickly shifting from being directed inward to instead being directed outward, more specifically toward Doctor Andersson.  "I cannot even begin to imagine what that felt like."

"Sofia is a strong woman," Nic said allowing a hint of admiration to be heard in her words. "Paris was only one of many things that have helped to shape her into the person that she is today." Dima's thoughts drifted to other places and times, moments that the CMO and CNS had shared to help shape the relationship they enjoyed today. "JDO-SHEN and ELYSIA were others such instances."

Satella looked at the taller Trill by her side. At five feet tall everyone was taller than she was but that was not the issue here. What Bruxa noticed was that Nicole seemed to be on the verge of tears, not an emotional breakdown, far from it, but a simple lapse brought upon by one or more powerful and emotionally charged memories.

"Nicole! Satella! Come here," Sofia called out. "I have something that the two of you can help me with." That was all that needed to be said to have the two women move back into the center of the bustling Sickbay. The joined Trill was delighted to be able to help the woman she cared about while the Mikulak woman was just happy to be able to do something instead of just standing there.  "I was able to get some information as to the situation from the Bridge. Lt. Stark said that our sensors picked up a small ship crossing into our dimension. It did so near the surface of ORION. We are moving to intercept.  If the need should arise for a medical team to beam over, I would like you to lead it."

"Me?" Satella gasped, the woman clearly shocked by the suggestion. "But you are the CMO of this ship, so should it not be you that the Captain will want to send over?"

Nicole smiled quickly understanding Sofia's train of thoughts. "If the ship we are about to intercept has any one from the ANUBIS on board, it would make more sense for you to be there to address whatever medical needs they might have.  I am sure that both Captain Iverson and Captain Morningstar would agree with this idea.  Let's be honest, you know the missing members of your crew better than anyone else here."

"True," Bruxa agreed. "I was not thinking of it that way.

"You can even do a quick psychological evaluation of anyone that is there from your crew," Nicole proposed. "Using your personal and professional knowledge of them, you are the best person to see if there is something wrong with them, something that we would be able to address the moment they come aboard."

"I guess you are right," Satella said enthusiastically.  "Can I borrow a field medical kit?"

"Nicole will show you where they are," Sofia said knowing that this would not only keep the two women occupied but it would also give the CNS the chance to evaluate the ANUBIS' CMO and create a psychological base of reference to be used when she would return, that was of course if there would actually be a need to send a member of the medical team on an away mission.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Chief Medical Officer
USS BASTET

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M17-A019: USS ANUBIS: Morningstar: 35012.1830 ("Keeping Busy")
##########
"Keeping Busy"
Previous posts (ANU) "Moving and Talking" / (BAS) "Preparations"
##########

"There can be only one Captain to a ship."
- Thomas John Barnardo

=====
Setting:  USS BASTET, Deck 12, Main Engineering
Stardate: 35012.1830

The Native American man walked into the BASTET's Main Engineering and paused at the sight of the pulsating warp core. This was not his ship, but as a former engineer, Erik felt an inner warmth as he gazed upon the tower. Chief Engineers were an odd bunch and Morningstar had only to look to his own Lt. Cmdr. Paquette to see just how true that statement was.  The woman was as weird as could be at times, and yet he found himself envying her more than once. There was nothing like being the one in charge of taking care of a ship.

"Captain Morningstar," the BASTET's ILO said as she walked past the Native American. "What brings you down here at this time? I hope that it is not for a tour because, as you can see," Gemma said pointing to the nearest flashing yellow status light, "we are in the middle of something."

"It is because of that," Erik replied pointing to the same light, "I am here. When dealing with any situation, a ship needs its Captain on the bridge where they can take charge without having to deal with distractions or worst, interferences."

A smile flashed on Gemma's lips, disappearing just as quickly as it had appeared. "Your first reaction was to head to the bridge but since this is not your ship, you decided instead to come down here and stay out of Captain Iverson's way."

"Yes and no," Morningstar said. "Was my first reaction to head to the bridge? Yes. Did I figure it would be best if I did not stand over your Captain's shoulder as she took decisions that might put my own crew at risk? Maybe. Did I come down here to be as far away from her as I could? Absolutely not."

The ILO looked back at the Native American Captain with a hint of puzzlement before a second smile swept over her face, vanishing just as quickly as the first had done. "Of course. You were reassigned from the PROPHECY to the GATEWAY station, taking on the role of Chief Engineering Officer. That was a relatively simple move given that you help the position of Chief of Operations before that. A little over a year later you were again reassigned this time to the PROPHECY as its CEO.  That is where you became acquainted with the Federation's technology involved in moving a ship from one dimension to another.  By the time you made your way to the PARADOX and its untested temporal drive, you were no longer an Engineer but rather a First Officer."

Erik wanted to be surprised or maybe even shocked at the way his career had been so easily broken down and revealed by the woman, but the Native American simply shook his head. "It is said that Chief Engineers are a special kind of officers, I believe that the same could be said about the Intel Officers. You and Shar'El have a lot in common."

Gemma appeared offended by that statement and quickly turned her back to the Native American. "If you will excuse me, Captain, I have things to do."

"Lieutenant!" Erik snapped. The last thing he wanted was to upset anyone, especially someone under the command of another Captain, one who had been kind enough to offer her ship and crew to help him.  As soon as Gemma turned to look at him once again, the Native American approached and soften his tone. "I am sorry if I have offended you, it was not my intent. My comment was only meant to show how I see the two of you, as highly dedicated and resourceful officers who seem to have an uncanny ability to manage information better than most computers. I am sorry if I was clumsy in expressing this to you, please understand that I hold you in the highest possible regards." The two gazed at one another for a few seconds. "Please, accept my apologies. I should have known better than to compare the two of you. I know Shar'El enough to know that she would not have appreciated the comparison, just like you did."

Gemma nodded her head, silently accepting the Native American's apology. "Why are you here?" The ILO asked reverting to a much more professional tone and stance.

"As you pointed out, my previous expertise was engineering. I am here to offer my help. I know that the BASTET is lacking the services of a Chief Engineer, so I thought that maybe I could be of some use."

"Very well," Gemma said. "You can monitor the primary systems and power distribution relays. If we end up going to red alert, you can also take care of the power distribution to the phasers."

"Thank you, Lieutenant," Erik said before heading to a station from where he could be able to take care of the responsibilities he had been given.  Gemma just watched the man as he walked away, considering his words very carefully and wondering if maybe she would be able to use their earlier conversation to get him to talk to her a little more about the ANUBIS' ILO.  Shar'El held a distinct advantage over her and that was something the BASTET's ILO wanted and needed to address.

--==(/\)==--
Francois Charette

Commanding Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC 18501

AND

Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA
M13-B021: USS BASTET: Enel: 35012.1835 ("Battle For Eagle-5")
=-=
“Battle For Eagle-5”
Previous posts: (ANU) “Keeping Busy" by Francois / (BAS) "Preparations" by Tiffany

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35012.1835

The Bridge was abuzz as Chief of Security Zub Enel passed the occupied Captain’s command chair and settled in at Tactical. On the main viewer above bright white brushstroke clouds hung a small boxy ship. Zub’s heart pulsed faster with anticipation.

Lt. Mitshiba reported from the Science station, “Long range scans indicate a hodgepodge of technology like our guest’s runabout in the shuttle bay.”

Captain Iverson sat calmly upright in the command chair, elbows on the arms, fingers interlaced over her lap. “It’s another runabout?”

“No, sir,” Aki said with a turn toward the Captain. She scrunched her face while she thought. “It is different but in the same — crazy architecture — for lack of a better phrase.”

Commander Valentine arrived by then, standing by the Captain’s chair. “That confirms it’s from the same dimension as our ‘guest’.”

Zub Enel added from Tactical, “It has no weapons or shields. It might be a short-haul freighter or shuttle.”

Lt. Jayson Stark offered from the Operations station, “A transponder just switched on designating it as Eagle-5.”

Captain Iverson nodded, keeping her expression cool. “Helm, ETA?”

FCO A’Janni turned his catlike face, his single white eye dilated. “Six minutes to transporter range.”

Misaki spoke from Science again. “Close enough to bioscan any passengers.” She smiled at the Captain, her fingers poised.

The Captain regarded the boxy craft, now clearer. Like the alien runabout, all manner of extraneous boxes and cabling festooned the hull. “Proceed.”

The CSciO worked her controls. “Scans indicate … the crew includes a Bolian/Human, a Nylaan and two Humans, all females.” Recognition made her smile.

Jayson said, “I’ll bet latinum that that Nylaan is Ya’Han!” His heart leap before slamming into a ceiling. He remembered he was no longer foremost in her affection.

Lt. A’Janni, the large one-eyed tiger at Flight Control rumbled, “I’ll bet Jayson’s latinum that the scan shows that the rest of the missing ANUBIS crew is onboard too.”

Mitshiba said, “It’s tricky at this range, and there is a lot of interference from the wacky avionics of that craft, but additional bio-signs indicate an Orionid male and ….” She shrugged. “Maybe a small animal?”

Commander Valentine smiled. “All this is certainly hopeful news.” Jayson and Aki started smiling too.

“Continue scanning,” the Captain said, her tone cool, “We need to verify that’s the ANUBIS crew.”

“Four minutes to transporter range,” A’Janni added.

Zub Enel leaned his big frame away his Tactical display. “Captain, another starship coming in. Closing on Eagle-5.”

Smiles disappeared.

“On screen,” the Captain said, voice steady.

The large ship resembled a Klingon bird of prey from a century ago, but the bulbous bow had been encrusted with ungainly blocks of superstructure like the original ship had rammed another ship but never cleared the wreckage. Aft, two wide-set nacelles glowed strangely; flickering, brightening, fading almost to black before brightening again.

Commander Valentine marveled from beside the Captain’s chair. “How do they get their junk to work?”

“Tactical, analysis,” Captain Iverson said with slight interest from her command chair.

Zub tapped his controls. “Warp driven. Unknown starship class. It is hard to classify, like Klingon and other ship parts cobbled together.” He paused. “Intercept course to Eagle-5. It has started targeting scans. Weapons are powering up. Disrupters.”

“Red Alert,” Selene said calmly. A siren sounded once. Status indicators flashed red. “Helm, put us between them and Eagle-5. Tactical, ready phasers.” Her gray eyes took in her crew instantly complying. She hid her growing pride beneath icy calm.

A’Janni banked the spearhead shaped BASTET and brought it midway between the belligerent ship and the Eagle-5.

On the cusp of his first space battle on the BASTET, Zub Enel took care to target only the nacelles. “Phasers ready.”

“Shields up,” Iverson said. “Hail that ship.”

Jayson activated powerful force fields around the BASTET. He opened hailing frequencies. “Inbound warp driven vessel, this is the Federation Starship USS BASTET. Stand down at once. Please respond immediately.”

Only silence returned.

Aki reported, “Bioscans indicate a blended crew; mostly Orionid males, with Byzatiums, Dopterians and Markalians.”

“Gypsies, tramps and thieves,” Commander Valentine murmured from beside Iverson’s chair.

“All known Ferengi associates,” Iverson said, her face thoughtful. “Maybe they’re raiders and Eagle-5 is just convenient prey.”

Jayson said, “Ya’Han has a checkered history with the Ferengis. They might be after her.”

“Either way, not today,” Iverson said calmly. “Tactical, report.”

Zub carefully matched his captain’s calm, “We have interdicted them.  Their vessel has slowed. Their shields are up. Their targeting scans just swept us and now have locked on.”

Selene felt the eyes of the bridge crew on her. She said softly, “So, clearly hostile. And not ones to talk first.”

Zub Enel’s down prickled along his scaly arms. He kept his voice calm. “Disrupters powering up. They are firing.”

A gossamer light flickered over the main viewer. The BASTET registered a stout thump. Alarms tweeted on the Ops station.

Jayson voice was casual. “Hit on forward starboard shield. Shield holding. Hard enough to slop your tea, but no structural damage.”

The Captain leaned forward. Her arms rested comfortable on her thighs. “Ensign Enel, I want you to target only their shields. Let’s not atomize their ship and 16 cubic parsecs of space. Understood?”

“Understood, sir. Tit for Tat.” Zub hoped his nervousness about performing well had not prompted such careful instruction. He told himself she was simply being clear about what she wanted. His neck down jigged as he backed off the phaser power.

The enemy ship began a maneuver around the BASTET. Its bulbous nose rose, exposing more of its aft underside. Ignoring that juicy target, he aimed at empty space just below the nacelles. “Phasers ready.”

“Fire.”

A fan of plasma-white beams converged into one bright point. A brilliant ball flared around the enemy ship before quickly fading.

Jayson reported from Ops, “Hit! That knocked their shield strength down to 60 percent.”

Iverson’s cool gray gaze stayed on the ship on the main viewer. “Let’s punch them a bit harder, Ensign.”

Zub’s stomach felt suddenly at sea. He had no idea what ‘a bit harder’ would entail. He did not want to pierce the shields and vaporize the enemy. He did a calculation based on Jayson’s damage report and made an adjustment. “Ready phasers, sir.”

“Fire.”

The interloper’s shields flared blindingly bright like the ship had blown up into a brilliant blue supernova. Zub blinked at a purple afterimage.

Jayson stated matter-of-factly, “Their shields are down.”

As his vision cleared Zub was happy the interloper remained intact. After a scan he stated, “They have changed course perpendicular to our heading. They appear to be fleeing.”

A’Janni at the flight controls gave a derisive little chuckle.

Iverson knew that chasing a supposedly wounded quarry could end in an ambush. “Helm, do not chase. Close on Eagle-5. Tactical, scan for other armed vessels.”

A’Janni banked the BASTET gracefully from the aft end of the fleeing ship onto a heading toward the Eagle-5 above ORION.

Zub Enel studied a 360 tactical scan. “Unfortunately, the norm appears to be that a great many vessels around this planet are armed. However, none are powering their weapons.”

“Secure from Red Alert.” Captain Iverson resigned herself that the battle, however brief, had alerted the entire ORION system to their presence. “Ops, hail the Eagle-5.”

“Open, sir.”

“Eagle-5. This is Captain Selene Iverson of the Federation Starship USS BASTET. Please respond.”

=-=
David Michael Inverso

Chief Security and Tactical Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977

“True heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic. It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost, but the urge to serve others at whatever cost.”
 - Arthur Ashe
M17-A020: USS ANUBIS: Bonviva: 35012.1840 ("Etcetera, Etcetera, Etcetera")
“Etcetera, Etcetera, Etcetera”
Previous posts: (ANU) “Keeping Busy" by Francois / (BAS) "Battle For EAGLE-5" by David

=/\=
Nobody learns without getting it wrong
I won't give up, no, I won't give in
Till I reach the end and then I'll start again
--Shakira, "Try Everything"

=/\=
Setting: EAGLE-5 (aka Winnebago with Wings)
Stardate: 35012.1840

[/\]EAGLE-5. This is Captain Selene Iverson of the Federation Starship USS BASTET. Please respond[/\]

There was an astounding amount of silence.  “ANSWER IT,” Sonja demanded as she went leaping across the way to take charge of the comm.

Krokus threw himself over the comm panel as an automated message was heard to be blaring, [/\] Thank you for contacting the EAGLE-5, sorry I can’t come to the comm now but if you leave a message and how much you’re willing to pay, I’ll be sure to get back to you. [/\]  As he looked over to the women in his ship he explained, “Really ORION is very nice this time of year--”

“Answer the comm,” Ya-Han warned, her eyes narrowing in on the sketchy man who was piloting.  

Krokus held up one hand in a bid for patience, while covering the comm with another.  “You see... I’m not very popular within the Federation.”

Sonja blinked at that.  “And yet you decided to kidnap--”

“I prefer to think of myself as a one-way tour guide,” Krokus interjected.

The CEO slammed a fist on the console.  “--before you *kidnapped* members of Starfleet!  And Xana.”

The Bolian/Human rolled her eyes at that.  “Standing right here,” she quipped dryly.

“You know your title,” Sonja announced.  Looking over at Krokus she said, “That is where we are going, now let us speak to them.”

Krokus hemmed and hawed while Sonja argued and Ya’Han glared.  Finally Adriana tapped on Xana’s shoulder and the azure woman leaned back to hear what the other woman said.  “Why don’t you do something?”

Xana threw up her hands.  “What do you expect me to do?”

“Something, wave around your credentials,” Adriana pointed out.

Xana sighed.  Folding her arms she said, “What do you think I am?  A magician?  Besides I promised Morningstar I wouldn’t do that, just keep announcing who I am to get us out of jams.”

Adriana frowned at that.  “You promised Captain Morningstar that in the event we’re being held on a ship against our will with a Federation starship within range you wouldn’t do everything you could to get us out of it.”

The azure woman rolled her eyes at that.  “You frighten me at times.”  Sighing, she conceded, “In a good way.”  Waving her hand she said, “Oh no, grasshopper, you’re in this with me too.”

Walking back over to where Sonja and Ya’Han were arguing with Krokus.  “My baby will never go near a Federation ship!” he declared.

“That’s fine,” Xana decided.  Looking down at her fingernails as if she was debating getting a manicure she said, “In accordance with Regulation 06-8342-9322--”

“I’m not listening to your made up regulations,” Krokus said.

“It’s not made up,” Ya-Han confirmed, although she was confused what good Starfleet regulations regarding the Diplomatic Corp was going to do here.  

“By the power vested in me as Ambassador -- etcetera, etcetera, etcetera -- I am commandeering this vessel to take us to where we want to go,” Xana said.  Glaring at Krokus she said, “And we have one of two destinations, either that ship whose call you will answer or the nearest starbase.  Either one will be as soon as possible.”  

As Krokus puffed himself up, Ya-Han warned, “It’s either take us where we are going or see the inside of a brig now.”

Krokus pouted at that as he tapped the console.  “But we were having fun.”

=/\=
Setting: USS BASTET, Shuttle Bay
Stardate: 35012.1850

The rag tag crew of the came out of the EAGLE-5, and the combined crews of the ANUBIS and BASTET came out to see the returning women... with some new additions.

“So no brig time, we are agreed on that?” Krokus asked as he came out.  “And you all liked my flying.”

“You’re pushing it,” Ya-Han warned him.  

Captain Morningstar was one of the people in the Shuttle Bay and looked around.  “Who is this?” he asked his crew.

“A spoil of war, as it were,” Sonja replied.  

Krokus gave an exaggerated bow, “I am Krokus, at your service.”

Whatever Morningstar was going to say was tempered by the eyerolls and glares from the women who had disembarked from the shuttle.  Clearing his throat he said, “Yes... well... thank you for bringing them here.”

Krokus, as he straightened himself, clearly never having heard the motto “Less is more”, continued talking. “Well it was a near thing but after the Ambassador commandeered my ship using her fancy rules and title I had no choice but to agree.”  Seeing Morningstar’s raised eyebrow he clarified, “Cheerfully.  I cheerfully agreed.”

As the Ambassador groaned and began rubbing her temple, Morningstar asked.  “Anything else?”  Oddly enough he felt something on his foot and looked down to see a reddish-brown dog happily wagging his tail with his pink tongue lolly-gagging out.  

“So we got a puppy,” Xana explained, with her best “I’m trying to make the best of this situation” face as she went to grab the puppy from Morningstar’s foot.  “That’s D'Artagnan.” 

“I see,” the Captain of the ANUBIS replied.  “Is there more?”

The four women looked at each other and nodded.  “Yes,” they all announced seriously.

=/\=
Sarah Albertini-Bond
USS ANUBIS
M17-A021: USS ANUBIS: Shar'El: 35012.1855 ("Questions")
=-=
"Questions"
[the previous posts were (ANU) "Etcetera, Etcetera, Etcetera" by Sarah / (BAS) "Battle For EAGLE-5" by David]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Shuttle Bay
Stardate: 35012.1855

Shar'El stood in the back, out of the way. As the ExO she should have been right there with Captain Morningstar to greet their missing officers back. It was also proper protocol for both the CO and ExO to be present when welcoming a high-ranking dignitary such as an Ambassador. Since her arrival onto the BASTET though, the raven-haired Ullian had fallen back on her ILO ways.  This was not her ship, so her title of First Officer held no real significance, so it made sense for the woman to stay back and observe the scene unfold.

She did not need to be a Betazoid to know that there was a great deal of joy and relief in the room. Everyone was happy to see Adriana, Xana, Sonja and Ya'Han back safe and sound. The ladies appeared a little rough around the edges but that was more than understandable based on what bits and pieces of memories the Ullian caught. The only one who was clearly less than thrilled by his being here was Krokus, the expression on his face speaking volume about him wanting to be anywhere else but here. What the ExO / ILO found strange though was the complete lack of memories coming from him.  Either his mind was expertly trained or there was something blocking her ability from reaching his mind. Given the man's general appearance, the latter seemed much more likely.

The ExO / ILO smiled as her friends and fellow shipmates walked past her as they exited the shuttle bay. The Ambassador was speaking with the Captain, recalling some of the more colorful situations they were forced to deal with while on the strange space station they had been brought to. Sonja and Ya'Han both seemed to be more than happy to be anywhere else then where they had been which included the station and the ship that had brought them there and back. 

 Adriana on the other hand was not so easily distracted by the joy and relief that flooded the room. Cradling the puppy in her arms, the memories of the Counselor / Junior Ambassador were locked onto her time as a prisoner.

As she took in the memories being freely broadcasted, Shar'El became aware of something unexpected. While on the alien space station the group encountered copies of themselves, both similar and different in many ways reminding the ExO / ILO of the comparison between Fiona and Selene.  Although this did not prove that the faux-Selene came from that specific dimension, the possibility could not be easily dismissed and would require more investigation.

"Commander Valentine to Ensign Enel," the BASTET's First Officer said after tapping her comm badge.

[/\] Chief of Security Enel here, go ahead Commander. [/\]

"Please double the security detail near our guest's quarters. I am escorting a new guest whom will be set in the quarters next to hers," Valentine said.
[/\] Will do Commander. Do you require extra security personnel for the escort? [/\]

"She will not be alone, Ensign," Shar'El chimed in offering her services for this simplistic task.  "Your current ILO is busy in Main Engineering, so I thoughts I would offer my services. So please, Commander, do not look upon me as another ExO trying to challenge your authority as this is not my intention. I simply offer my skills and knowledge as an ILO curious to uncover what your latest guest might be trying to hide from us all."

The BASTET's ExO considered the offer very carefully and eventually agreed although with some clear reservations. "No need for any extra security for the escort Ensign Enel. Just have the security detail ready at our destination."

[/\] Understood Commander. Bridge out. [/\]

"I am glad to see that you are trusting me," Shar'El said trying to be as polite and friendly as she could be.

"I don't," Sarena said in an icy tone. "If something should happen, at least it will not be *my* ILO who will be on the receiving end."  With her sentiments made perfectly clear, the two Commanders motioned for the man to join them.  "If you would be so kind as to follow us, we will escort you to your quarters. I am sure that Captain Iverson and Captain Morningstar will want to speak with you soon."

"I was promised that I would not be going to the brig!" Krokus said, his wide-opened eyes filled with horror.

"We are not escorting you to the brig Mr. Krokus," Valentine reassured. "You are our guest and we have quarters ready for you. Granted you will not be permitted to leave or wander the ship at this time, but I assure you that you are not being detained as a criminal. I am sure that you will understand that for the time being we also cannot permit you to return to your... craft," Sarena had to carefully chose her word not ready to refer to the odd-looking piece of equipment resting in the shuttle bay as a 'ship'.

Seeing that he had few options, the man sighed and lowered his head. "Lead the way. My guess is that if I refuse you will either quote some unknown regulation that will force me to comply or worse you will call in the brute squad to have them drag me feet-first to wherever it is you want to lock me away in."

"Trust me when I saw this," Shar'El whispered to the man. "You would not like dealing with the brute squad. He is quite the man and would not even break a sweat in dealing with the likes of you."

"HE?!? The squad is only one man?"

Seeing what she was doing, Sarena decided to play along. "Ensign Enel is more than enough to be a one-man squad and Commander Shar'El is right when she states that he would not break a sweat while dealing with you, even at your worst."

Realizing that his options had gone from few to truly none, Krokus sheepishly complied without saying anything more.  Once the man was far enough ahead a few steps behind the one security officer in the lead, Shar'El leaned over to Sarena. "Well, we did not lie. As I recall, Voths being reptilian do not sweat, this no matter how demanding a physical task may be."  Commander Valentine just relied with a fleeting smile as they followed the to make certain that there would not be any problems.

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 7, Guest Quarters
Stardate: 35012.1910

Krokus surveyed the quarters that he was assigned with a sense of sadness. Yes, these were much nicer accommodations than he was used to, but it was still a prison based on the fact that he could not leave and that there were guards posted outside his door.

"Relax," Fiona said as she stepped out from the shadows. "When was the last time you had an actual bed that you could enjoy?"

"How am I supposed to enjoy a bed while you and I are sharing a place like this?"

"There are not my quarters. I am in the ones next door," Fiona explained. "Relax, how I managed to be here is well above your pay-grade. All you need to know is that I am here, and things are unfolding according to plan. Hel will be most pleased, that is of course as long as you do as you are told."

"Don't worry, I know what I have to do," Krokus said sighing heavily.

"You better. I would hate to have to force someone to clean these quarters from your splattered blood and guts on every wall." The though made Krokus nervous causing him to look around while he unwillingly imaged what the scene might look like. When he returned his eyes to the woman, she was gone as if she had never been there at all. He knew her well enough to know that this was not his mind playing tricks on him and that it was best for him to obey her and continue with the plan as laid out by Hel.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS

Chief Medical Officer
USS BASTET
M13-B022: USS BASTET: Dima-Iverson: 35012.1915 ("Counseling Session")
---
"Counseling Session"
(Previous Post: (ANU) "Questions" / (BAS) "Battle For EAGLE-5")
---

Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 1, Observation Lounge 
Stardate: 35012.1915

Selene sat in her seat at the end of the conference table, yet that was the only familiar aspect of this meeting as she was the only officer from the BASTET in attendance. Captain Morningstar sat on the right along with Ambassador Bonviva and Junior Ambassador Lopez while Lieutenant Commander Paquette and Lieutenant Ya'Han sat on the left.

Iverson listened as the group went through a hurried various of what they had encountered while in the other dimension. A dark space station located in the middle of nowhere, doppelgangers of themselves and more importantly was a plot from 'The Confederacy', the twisted mirror reflection of the Federation from this other dimension, to send an invasion force into this dimension.

As soon as the physical mistreatment of Adriana Lopez was mentioned, the meeting was brought to an end, Captain Iverson ordering everyone to report to Sickbay for a complete physical examination.  It made sense for Erik to follow them, after all they were *his* officers, leading to Selene to find herself alone in the room.

After a few minutes of quiet reflection, the Captain of the USS BASTET reached for her communicator. "Counselor Dima, if you have a moment could you please report to the Observation Lounge?"

=/\= On my way. =/\=

Selene Iverson cupped her face in her hands. She could feel a tension headache forming, which wasn’t a normal occurrence for her. Then again, these were not normal times. The ship was crowded with extra crew but having multiple educated opinions in key positions wasn’t making things any easier. She raised her head to witness Nicole’s arrival.

The joined Trill looked concerned and curious. She hadn’t been expecting the Captain’s invite. “What can I help you with?”

 "Counselor Dima, be honest with me... have I lost it?"

"That's an interesting way to open a conversation," The diminutive brunette replied.

"And you're evading the question," Selene pointed out.

“If I answered ‘yes’, would that make you feel better?”

Selene paused. “The fact that I’m even thinking about this before responding is not doing my confidence any favors.”

Nic sat across from her Commanding Officer. "Relax. First, that was clearly a rhetorical question. Second, a person without solid possession of their mental faculties wouldn't question their sanity."

“I haven’t lost it then,” the ebony-haired woman said with uncertainty.

“Not yet,” Nicole quipped, almost smiling. “But why am I here?”

“Our mission is likely not finished, even though we have found the ANUBIS’ missing crew,” Selene began. "There is a threat on the other side, one that we have been asked to involve ourselves in and put a stop to."

"The Confederacy." Nicole confirmed, looking troubled. “Haven’t any of these other beings ever heard the saying ‘the grass is always greener on the other side’?”

“Yes, but they are choosing it as fact, rather than an idiom.”

“It’s not just a simple search-and-rescue anymore,” Nic prodded. “We have Eric’s people back.”

“Anything that requires dimensional travel, or a mirror universe probably shouldn’t be called simple, but complications are now on a much greater order of magnitude than I signed up for.” Selene cast her grey eyes on the CNS. “What are your thoughts on this?”

“While a daunting prospect, we’ve handled worse threats before.” Neither of them had to utter the name Lokustaar to know what they’d managed to overcome. “Once again, the safety of the entire Federation would be at stake if these Confederates were to infiltrate our universe. We will only get one chance to make a first impression. Striking early and quickly will give us the upper hand. It’s logical. You know this already.”

“I can’t argue with you,” Iverson agreed. “Those reasons alone would tip the balance in favor of us going.”

“But you still look upset. Something- or someone- is stopping you from following through,” Nicole said astutely. “And it’s not Captain Morningstar.”

“Fiona,” Selene said, the woman who both was and was not a copy of her weighing heavily on her mind. “Her very presence is disturbing to me.”

“You share almost identical DNA with that cross-dimensional embodiment of you. Of course that’s a little creepy.”

Selene almost rolled her eyes. “Thanks for noticing.”

“What was it like speaking with her?”

“It was haunting and uncomfortable.”

“Which part?”

“All of it. Especially the part where she was seemingly friendly but also evasive. I learned a lot about the Confederacy and why she felt we were the right choice to take action against them, but I wanted to know more about her, and she wouldn’t give up a shred of that.”

Nicole folded her arms thoughtfully. “There’s a reason Starfleet has a temporal investigation unit. Even she must understand you can’t interfere with history, even though this isn’t her home universe.”

“Then why divulge anything at all?”

Nic shrugged. “Maybe she’s known about the Confederacy and its motives for a long time, but didn’t have anyone to confide in. Maybe she was telling the truth that we have a unique and positive position with which to help. Maybe the only person she trusts is one of her doppelgangers.”

“But I don’t trust *her*,” Selene sighed, letting her concern out. “Wouldn’t she know that about me if she was such an expert?”

“Not necessarily. It’s nature versus nurture. Genetics versus environment. IDIC. It’s obvious her upbringing was vastly different than your own. So, despite the fact that you are twins of a sort, she can’t read your mind. She can only make educated guesses.”

Iverson pushed herself up from the table, walking around a little, attempting to free herself from her thoughts. “I’m trying to put myself in her position, but without any reference I can’t see what her motivations are.”

“I get why you don’t trust her. But she’s not the only person with an opinion here. The Ambassador, Counselor Lopez, Ya’Han, and Sonja just came back from there. This Krokus guy that came with them must know *something*. Just look at his ship.  If you can piece together their experiences with what Fiona is telling us, wouldn’t that be enough to ease some of your worries?”

Selene nodded her head. There was a reason why Counselors were assigned to ship and why it was a prudent choice for a Commanding Officer to make use of such a valuable resource. "Thank you, Counselor. It might not have resolved my headache but at least I have a clearer picture of what it is I need to do."

"Always a pleasure to help, Captain" Dima said, a feeling of accomplishment filling her being.

---
Susan Ledbetter

Writing for
Cns
USS BASTET

and
 
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)
M17-A022: USS ANUBIS: Lopez-Dima: 35012.1930 ("Counselling The Counsellor")
-=-=-
"Counselling The Counsellor"
[Previous post: (ANU) "Questions" & (BAS) "Counseling Session"]
-=-=-

Setting:  USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 35012.1930

Adriana sat cross-legged on the corner-most bed of the room with D’Artangnan safely cradled in the created divot of her legs. The puppy had surrendered himself to being there and petted, all of his earlier efforts to go and investigate this new world having been denied by the woman currently scratching behind his right ear. As absentmindedly as the gesture was, the canine appeared more than happy to be the target of such lasting attention.

“We are ready for you now,” Satella said, referring to the medical team. The smile on the CMO’s face made it abundantly clear that she was more than happy to see her friend safe and sound while at the same time letting some hints of concerns make their way onto her facial expression.

“I’m fine,” Adriana said, trying to be as assertive as she could be but realizing that she was failing miserably.  “Take care of the others, they went through more than I did.”

“Not according to what *they* told me,” the Doctor and friend said without trying to hide her disappointment, the emphasis on the word ‘they’ clarifying that it was the same people they were speaking about. “You were captured and showed distinct physical evidence of having been beaten during your incarceration. I can only guess to the hell you went through while you were being tortured but I do not need to guess at anything to know that you are not *fine*.”  Despite her frustration, Satella managed to keep her tone of voice soft and friendly. The troubled woman sitting in front of her was much more than a patient, she was a dear friend who needed immediate care that could not be forced upon her. She needed to want to be helped.

“I *am* fine,” Adriana said in a way meant to convince both her friend and herself. “I just need to be alone for a little while longer.”

“Alone?” Satella said before looking over her shoulders to make sure that no one else would hear what she would say next. “Do you need time to speak with Amanda? Is that what this is about? I get it, speaking to Amanda might make more sense right now since she was there with you during all of this, but she is not the answer to what is troubling you right now.”  The CMO knew of Adriana’s hallucinations of her missing twin sister, the haunting image of her sibling always making an appearance when things became too difficult for the hispanic woman to handle on her own.

“Amanda?” She repeated her twin sister’s name as if it had been the first time she had ever heard it. “No, I just want to be alone, just as I was before and during. She abandoned me when I needed her the most and I certainly do not need her now.” The gentle scratching behind D’Artagnan’s ear had turned into a forceful petting of the puppy’s head pulling his fur back to such a point that it made him look Asian.

Satella was at a loss as to what to say or do next. Doctor Andersson had been more than happy to allow the ANUBIS’ Doctor to take care of the Junior Ambassador, the woman being a close friend of the CMO, but that had not taken into account the kind of resistance she was dealing with at this time.

A gentle hand landed on Bruxa’s shoulder making the Doctor turn to see the BASTET’s diminutive CNS standing there. “I think Doctor Andersson might be in need of your assistance in dealing with Ambassador Bonviva.”

Satella looked at Xana who was sitting on a biobed a few stations down before looking at Nicole and Adriana before returning her attention onto the Counselor. “Thank you,” she said without speaking aloud, the CMO understanding exactly what was happening.

“It’s nice to have a Doctor looking out for you, isn’t it?” Nic asked in an attempt to break the ice, trying to take in all the body language displayed by the ANUBIS’s Counselor. She was hunched over a little, avoiding eye contact for the most part. Those were signs that she was trying to deflect attention from herself. Thankfully the sweet puppy was soothing her, but eventually he would sleep, and it was certain that Adriana would need to rest, too. And as much as she professed to wanting to be alone, The joined Trill’s instincts went in the opposite direction. A cluttered mind wasn’t the best companion.

In an ideal situation, Nicole would have spoken with the Ambassador, Sonja, and Ya’Han about Adriana’s state of mind after her rescue. She would have consulted with Captain Morningstar about her service record since she arrived. But with the missing crew nearly hand-delivered to them, all thoughts about an organized effort had fallen by the wayside. She would need to work on the fly. “Doctor Bruxa has been a huge help to us since she arrived.” It was clear that the Mikulak woman cared about the Junior Ambassador, but Adriana did not respond in the way that was expected of her.

“She gets antsy unless she has something constructive to do,” Adrianna finally answered, a flicker of recognition present in her brown eyes. “When you put her to work, you played right into her hands.”

“I’m relieved that your physical injuries weren’t serious,” Dima continued, trying to stress the positive.

“You know any psychological effects will linger,” the Hispanic woman replied distantly, like she was speaking in abstracts or talking about someone else.

The impish brunette sighed softly. Even though Adriana had been through severe trauma, her education and knowledge were as sharp as anyone’s in her field.  It was the first time that Nic wondered how Sofia was handling another Doctor aboard and how Gemma was handling Shar’El’s presence. It didn’t exactly bode well. “I’m not here to analyze you,” Nicole replied, ruffling her short hair with her hand nervously.

“And I’m not here to be someone’s project,” Adriana fired back.

“If you feel I am treating you that way, I apologize. You are a human being, not a project.” Nicole felt a little flustered that her four lifetimes of experience were coming up short against a Junior Ambassador with simply more life experience. It wasn’t the first time since her arrival in Starfleet that she felt growing pains.

Adriana’s expression softened. “Glad we agree.”

Nic hoped that was some kind of acceptance, and continued. “There’s a room full of people, a ship full of people- who wanted nothing but to have you back. You do realize that, don’t you?”

D’Artagnan whined, looking up at his mistress as she continued to pet him more gently now. “Is that supposed to make it all better?”

“No, it’s supposed to make you recognize *why* you want to get better.”

Neither of them noticed the lithe form of the Human/Bolian woman approaching them. “You can’t claim diplomatic immunity to get out of counseling.”

“Excuse me?” Adriana sounded puzzled.

Xana looked at both women as she spoke but was clearly directing her comments to Adriana. “There’s no regulation that says you can use your credentials to stop the Ensign from doing her job.”

“I have seen you throw your rank and position around more times than I can count, so much so that Captain Morningstar had to make you promise to stop doing it,” Adriana said as her calm demeanor rapidly flowed away from the woman. “You have always enjoyed, or at least that is the impression I got, when I would do something, not as a Ship’s Counselor but as your Junior Ambassador. You always said that an Ambassador needs to be the one in charge, that it is part of the job, that we like it or not.”

“This is different,” Xana huffed. “We are not talking about negotiating a planetary treaty or trying to find common ground between two warring adversaries. This is about people having put their lives on the line to find and rescue you. I am sorry that we were not able to stop them from kidnapping you. I am sorry that we did not find you before you were beaten and tortured the way you were. We did the best we could to bring you back, and now it is your turn to do *your* best by letting those who care so much about you to actually help you mend both the physical and psychological scars that were so brutally inflicted upon you.”

Nicole hadn’t realized that the room had grown much more silent during the Ambassador’s plea, or that she had been holding her breath, looking to Adriana for a response. Xana’s words were heartfelt and to the point. Nic wanted Adriana’s trust that she could help her get better. But she also understood why that might be too much to ask at the present time.

Anger bordering on rage flashed over the Junior Ambassador’s face. Seconds later it was a sadness growing into what could only be described as overwhelming anguish that could be seen on the woman’s features. The inner battle of emotions raged on for several more seconds before the one side finally won over the other.  “Why?” Adriana broke down sobbing, letting go of D’Artagnan who, instead of jumping off the bed, turned to look at his troubled mistress. As little as the animal understood of what was happening, it knew that something was not right.

Nicole followed her impulses and hugged the emotionally broken woman, full of gratitude that Adriana was able to release some of her pent up agony. “It’s okay,” she almost whispered. “Let it out.” The other woman’s body convulsed with sobs as Nic tried to give her the illusion of safety. “She will be alright,” the joint Trill added as she looked back to the Bolian/Human woman standing close by.

“No she won’t, not for a long while,” Xana very quietly whispered back. “That is part of the price we pay for being members of the Ambassadorial corp. Sooner or later, the emotions we have kept bottled up inside come pouring out, and usually not in a good way.”

-=-=-
Susan Ledbetter

Cns
USS BASTET

And

Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Lieutenant JG Adriana Lopez [Access Character BIO for Adriana Lopez]
Ship's Counselor & Junior Ambassador
USS ANUBIS
M17-A023: USS ANUBIS: Bruxa: 35012.2000 ("Time To Rest")
=-=
"Time To Rest"
[the previous posts were (ANU) "Counselling The Counsellor" / (BAS) "Counseling Session"]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 35012.1635

Sickbay was once again empty and quiet. Everyone had been examined and given a clean bill of health. That did not mean there had not been any bumps or bruises along the way. There were more than enough of those on everyone. Allowing people to rest in quarters only meant that no one had suffered anything major or permanent. At least physically speaking.

"We did well," Doctor Andersson said. "I always was told that two CMOs could not work together. That each would try to force the other to work their way."

"This is your ship, your sickbay, your domain. I am but a humble guest trying to help as much as she can." Satella smiled until her gaze drifted onto the corner-most bed.

"You are worried about your friend." The words were not a question but a statement. Sofia was acknowledging what had transpired and how it made them all feel. It had been impossible to miss the exchange between the Ambassador and Junior Ambassador. It had also been impossible to deny the effect it had on everyone.

Satella sighed. "Physical scars are far easier to treat than emotional ones. I cannot even begin to imagine what she went through out there. The scars of being kidnapped are not something easily dealt with. The sense of vulnerability stays with you, usually for the rest of your life."

"Emotional scars never fully heal," Sofia agreed. Her own personal experience with the destruction of PARIS was proof enough of that.

"The problem is that the kidnapping was not the only thing she had to endure." Saying this Satella was on the verge of tears. "She was beaten and tortured with horrifying force and precision. The fact that she still appeared as strong as she did is a miracle on its own."

"I assure you, your friend is in very good hands," Sofia said. "Nicole is a remarkable woman and an even better CNS. With four lifetimes of experiences and knowledge, she will find a way to make it all better. You just have to give her time. Trust me, she is the best."

"You really admire the Counselor," Bruxa pointed out. As much as she did not really want to, the CMO welcomed the opportunity to change the focus of their conversation. Continuing to talk about Adriana would only result in Satella emotionally breaking down.

"Am I not supposed to?" The grin on her lips as Andersson asked this was beyond evident. "Is it not required for a CMO to admire what a CNS does? We are a team, working on two sides of the same problems. Doctors fix the body while Counselors fix the mind. So, of course I admire Nicole, I could not do what I do without her."

"I saw the way you two looked at one another. There is more between the two of you than a professional relationship." Satella paused, considering how her words might be interpreted. "Please understand that I have nothing against such a relationship. Being able to have someone special in your life is truly a gift. Especially when that someone feels the same way as you do."

"Why do I have the feeling that we are no longer talking about Nic and I?" Sofia tilted her head to one side, trying to show annoyance that was not truly there. "You are not the only one that is able to see how people look at one another. I saw the way your entire demeanor changes when his name is mentioned."

Bruxa's posture quickly straightened up. "His name? I have no idea what it is that you are referring to."

Andersson took hold of the other CMO's shoulders and sat her on the main examination bed. "Jayson Stark!"  Satella eyes opened wide but the woman remained quiet. "Elevated heartrate, increasing in cardiovascular pressure, dilation of the pupils and capillaries in your cheeks."

It took a few seconds for Doctor Bruxa to understand where the other CMO was getting all of this information. Looking over her shoulder to the diagnostic display, Satella confirmed her suspicions. Her head had not fully returned to its starting position before the Mikulak woman had jumped off the examination bed.  "That was not fair, you cheated!"

"I am not judging you or anyone else. I just wanted to even the score. Now back to Adriana and Nicole," Sofia offered to Satella's great relief. "Dealing with emotional pain may be very different than addressing physical injuries. There is one thing they do share in the process of healing -- time.  Everyone needs to rest and allow thing things to settle down."

"That is easier said than done. After hearing what Ambassador Bonviva said about this Confederacy, I doubt that we will be resting for long." Satella was visibly troubled.

"Life on the ANUBIS cannot be that much different than that on the BASTET. Things are always shifting, changing, moving. We go from fighting for our lives one minute to saving the way of life of an entire world the next." Sofia stopped and sat on the bed where Satella had been only moments ago. "The one constant is for us to make the best of whatever time we are giving in between. Life is too short, too uncertain and unpredictable. We never know what will happen tomorrow. Heck, we are lucky if we know what will happen within the nest 30 seconds."

"True," Bruxa agreed. "You cannot go and see Nicole for the same reason I cannot go to see Adriana. So, what do we do in the meantime?"

"It may not be much, but I am sure that we can find something in the Mess Hall." With a wave of her hand, Dr. Anderson invited to other Doctor to head towards the door. "I am sure that we can have the food replicator create something cold and tasty."

"Nothing like a late night icescream snack to get you to relax. Count me in," and with that the two CMOs exited Sickbay.

=-=
Rachel Jackie Johnson

Intel Operative
USS BASTET

[Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint. - Mark Twain]
M17-A024: USS ANUBIS: Ya'Han: 35012.2000 ("Tactical Meeting")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Tactical Meeting"
[previous post were (ANU) "Time To Rest" / (BAS) "Counseling Session"]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: BASTET, Deck 3, Crew Quarters
Stardate: 35012.2000

It was nice to see Doctor Bruxa and the others. To be back in a familiar setting had done wonders to ease the Nylaan's stress, so much so that her hair had reverted back to solid back. At least that was the reasoning she accepted to account for this odd change in her appearance. Yes, Han gladly embraced that very same color while Ya'Han despised it and all that it represented, but for the time being the Sec/Tac did not want to think about anything that dealt with that dark and gloomy space station.

Following a long overdue shower and slipping into a fresh uniform, Ya'Han set out to find Jayson. She had been assigned to the same quarters as he but the man had failed to join her, something that she was finding increasingly worrisome.  When the sound of the door chime rang, the Nylaan leaped to the door ready to greet the man she had been expecting. The thought of why he had used the door chime was easily dismissed by her as his desire not to find her in a less than presentable manner.

With her hair now back to the usual mixture of red and black, the Nylaan opened the door with a smile, a smile that immediately vanished when instead of the Human man she had expected to see standing there Ya'Han saw an imposing bipedal lizard whom she recognized as being Ensign Zub Enel, the BASTET's Chief of Security.

Zub Enel watched the woman take a disappointed step back, her hair gradually losing the red streaks that had been there only seconds ago. "I hope I am not interrupting anything,” he said ever so politely.

"You are not," Ya'Han said before forcing herself to be a more gracious host. "Please, come in. To what do I owe this visit?"

"I wanted to make sure that the accomodations were to your liking. With so many *guests* onboard, we had to double assign some of the quarters. Captain Morningstar informed Commander Valentine that you and Lieutenant Stark were a couple, so it was deemed safe to have you share these quarters."

Not wanting to linger on the 'couple' aspect of their personal situation, Ya'Han quickly moved on to a related subject. "Speaking of Jayson, where is he? I was expecting to find him here or at the very least to show up after a little while."

"Lieutenant Stark is currently on the bridge manning the Operations station," the scaly giant replied. "He was kind enough to offer his expertise to help us find you and the other missing members of the ANUBIS' crew. He is still there making sure that the ship that tried to attack the EAGLE-5, or anything that comes close to it, are not still out there waiting for an opportunity to strike again."

"Thank you for letting me know," Ya'Han said before looking up at the tower of a being standing there, motionless. "Is there something else?"

"Actually, there is," he admitted. "Captain Iverson has tasked me with gathering all of the available tactical information about this Confederacy. Since you were there, in that other dimension, I thought I would begin by asking you a few questions."

Ya'Han was not in the mood for this, but duty came before any personal feelings. Over the years since her escape from her homeworld and Ferengi controlled space, this way of thinking proved to be her saving grace more than once. Unfortunately it had also been the main reason for the rift between Jayson and her. Chosing to go on an undercover mission by claiming to have fallen under the charms of Jayson's Lokustaar-created clone had not been easy. Actually developing feelings for that man had made matters even worse.

"Ask away," the Sec/Tac said as she made her way to the couch. There was no reason why she would have to stay standing for this.  As she flicked her pitch-black hair over her shoulder she detected a distinct air of hesitation coming from the Voth. It did not take a lot of effort for Ya'Han to guess as to what was troubling the wall-of-scales that had walked into the room. "Yes, I am Nylaan and we are capable of changing the color of our hair. Usually this is meant as a way to identify which cast or group we have earned the right to be a part of. In my case, it was a skill forced upon me from a very young age, a skill that has become over time an unconscious way to reflect my mood and emotions.  As Chief of Security, you might find my displaying the colors of the Warrior sect more acceptable." As she said this, Ya'Han's hair changed from solid black to bright red.

“Very Impressive,” the BASTET Sec/Tac said with what seemed true sincerity. “You may have met our changeable ILO, Lt. Gemma? I have been learning that she, too, has had her changeability forced upon her.”

Ya’Han shook her head.  “We have not met."

Zub softened his voice like he thought it might otherwise carry through the door.  “Just remember, if her hair becomes as red as yours and her voice changes, that is ‘Anya’, a highly dangerous personality. You and anyone around her is not safe. I believe the common expression is ‘tread carefully.’”

“Thank you for that,” the Nylaan said, puzzled. Was this Gemma a Nylaan like her? If so, why take on a new name with the simple change of her hair color. If the ANUBIS' Sec/Tac did this, she would never be certain as to what name to use.  After a few seconds of silence, Ya'Han nestled her head with red and black streaked hair against the couch back so she could comfortably look up at the lofty golden-eyed lizard man. “Now. Questions?”

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Hanali Han

Chief of Security / Chief Tactical Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M13-B023: USS BASTET: Gemma: 35012.2030 ("Character Assessment")
=-=
"Character Assessment"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Tactical Meeting" / (BAS) "Counselling Session"]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35012.2030

It might have been strange to say this, but the bridge was the quietest park of the BASTET. Thanks to the presence of the senior staff of the ANUBIS, the ship was abuzz with activity. More so than most were accustomed to, especially the ILO. People were talking, recalling what had transpired or debating on what would happen next. Past experiences were shared. Theory about the current situation were explored. Plans for dealing with the Confederacy were being made.  Everyone was busy with someone else, Gemma being the one glaring exception to this.

She had grown accustomed to be a member of a crew. Being a team member had never been her strong point. Mission after mission though she found this concept to be increasingly easier. After all, she had never been part of a team like this before joining the BASTET. Or had she?

Gemma could clearly remember many times when others had come to help her. Times when their unique and individual skills arrived just in time to save the day. How many times had Anya's ruthlessness saved her from certain doom? How many times had Wimda's technical expertise found an unlikely solution to a trap? How many times had Dalra's talents as a pilot saved her from being captured? Those were not the only ones to come to her help when she needed it. There was Neri and Lantra, Gabrielle and Jinx, and many more who always seemed to be there when their particular skills were needed.

Following the discovery made in the holodeck thank to Enel, the ILO had to put the idea of 'never having been part of a team' back in question. Gemma always considered herself to be a loner, but the more she thoughts about it, the less the descriptive seemed to apply.

"Are e done with this self-analysis?" It was the El'Aurian Counselor who spoke. "This is the first time you have tried to understand who it is you are. This is not the first time you have put yourself under scrutiny. Each time you do, you end up more broken and shattered than you were before. Maybe one day you will be able to answer the question of who you really are. Right now, though, is neither the time or place. Your ship, your crew, and that of the ANUBIS need you to be clear-headed and on task. That is unless you are willing to let Shar'El take your place as this ship's ILO? Jayson Stark is already officially assigned as the OPS officer, Lt. Cmdr. Paquette seems to be more than happy down in engineering. I do not see why Captain Iverson would refuse to allow Shar'El to take over your post should you be unable to accomplish your duties."

The woman stopped and looked at her reflection coming from one of the inactive screens. The blonde-hair of the El'Aurian quickly gave way to the wavy brown locks of the ILO. It was not the color of the hair that Gemma noticed though. It was the expression of absolute determination on the face of the woman looking back at her that hit home.

The unpalatable thought of Shar'El taking over the position of the BASTET's ILO pushed Gemma. There was no way she would allow this to happen. That meant she needed to keep her wits and focus where they needed to be. Rescuing the missing officers of the ANUBIS was no longer her mission. Figuring out what the Confederacy was planning was the one and only thing that the ILO needed to focus on.

With that in mind, Gemma called up the security feeds from the guest quarters. The faux-Selene was sitting comfortably on the couch, waiting for something. The expression on her face showed no concerns, not worries, not even a hint of impatience. By the looks of things, the woman was as content as could be being where she was.

In the quarters next door, the same could not be said about Krokus. The man was a nervous wreck, pacing the length of the quarters back and forth. It was easy to see that unlike Fiona, he did not want to be here. He was not in the least bit comfortable with the situation as it stood and appeared ready to jump out of his skin.

Experience had taught Gemma that dealing with someone as calm as Fiona would not be easy. The woman held one or more secrets, and did not fear being asked questions. Krokus on the other hand was so nervous that anything he would say might not even make any sense.  The ILO needed to find a way to get the answers her Captain needed. In order to accomplish this, Gemma would need to come up with a plan. Breaking through the calm and secured defenses of the faux-Selene would take time. Making Krokus become more at ease with his situation would also take time. There was not enough time for her do both. There was no way to know how close the Confederacy was to seeing their plan ready to execute. Therefore, she needed to pick one out of the two.

"You are making this harder than it needs to be." It was the Kotakian Yshuni Talz who spoke. Her blue hair impossible to miss in the reflection coming from the inactive screen. "Why do you have to always be 'all or nothing'? You don't want to let Shar'El take over as ILO. That makes perfect sense but listen to yourself. You are so bent on proving your worth in that role that you are ignoring everything else. You are not alone on the BASTET.  No one here will think any less of you if you ask for help.  Cmdr. Valentine has been on your side, so ask her for her opinion. You could even ask Misaki for help with this. You might end up with Lt. Cmdr. Maya helping as well. What about Enel? I am sure he would be thrilled to help you in whatever way he can. You have to ask yourself this. Does proving yourself mean showing everyone that you are a loner or that you are a member of this team?"

Looking at the reflection, Gemma saw her brown wavy hair once again return, a faint smile framed by her locks. She now knew what needed to be done.

=-=
Rachel Jackie Johnson

Intel Operative
USS BASTET

[The fun is getting to wear multiple disguises and getting to explore multiple personalities and bring them to life. - Jenna Fischer]
M13-B024: USS BASTET: Dima-Iverson-Morningstar 35012.2230 ("Negotiations")
“Negotiations”
[Previous Posts: (ANU) "Tactical Meeting" (BAS) "Counseling Session"]

=/\=
Setting: USS BASTET, Near Guest Quarters
Stardate: 35012.2230

Nicole Dima quietly stepped out of Adriana's accommodations, her eyes drooping closed against her will. She looked drained, about to fall asleep herself. But she was satisfied that she had done her best.

The CO of the ANUBIS had been standing sentinel outside, waiting. "How is she?" Erik asked, and startled the young Trill. "I'm sorry," he added as she breathed a sigh of relief, leaning against the edge of the door for support.

"I never appreciated your stealth before," Nic quipped, rubbing the back of her neck and standing upright,  "and I'm not sure I do now."

“Professional hazard,” he responded, trying to keep the mood light. However, neither of them seemed to be up for taking the bait.

Nicole paused, trying to find the best words to answer Morningstar's question. "She's resting. She's stopped crying, for now. I’ve made sure she knows she can reach out to us for anything at any time."

"I can tell there's a 'but' coming," the Native American man conceded.

"I wish I could tell you that you were wrong, but she's got a long way to go. When the mind and body undergo such extremely violent treatment, providing a safe space to explore and release those emotions is not a one-shot deal. There are elements of post-traumatic stress. She will need to relive this more than once to completely rid herself of it.”

“You know from experience,” Eric replied. The Reman prison on JDO-SHEN had held both Dima and Doctor Andersson captive before their assignment to the BASTET.

Nicole’s blue eyes looked somber. “Yes. And I had Sofia’s help, among others. And Adriana has a healthy support system as well. I can tell how much she is cared for by the Ambassador and Satella and the others. Even if she is not yet willing to admit it.”

“Why wouldn’t she want to accept their help?”

“A number of reasons. Adriana may be concerned about burdening the others by subjecting them to her experience and her recovery. She might feel guilt as it was her decisions that led her to be imprisoned, and for us to go after her. She simply may not be completely ready to begin the healing process. After all, our business isn’t finished here.”

“What do you mean?” Erik asked.

“The Confederacy is launching an initiative to invade our universe. Captain Iverson’s counterpart has asked for our help in putting a stop to their plans.”

“And she trusts her!?” He interjected.

“No, but-” Erik wasn’t sticking around to hear Nicole’s response. He was already making a beeline to the turbolift. The petite brunette had no choice but to follow him. “Hey, wait!”

=/\=
Setting: Captain's Ready Room

Selene brought the cup of perfectly warmed green tea to her lips. A single lemon slice floated on top of the beverage she replicated in an attempt to bring her a shred of peace as they lingered just inside the ORION system, still working on their next steps. But before she could place the cup down, someone indicated they were determined to enter. She set the cup down with a clatter as the door chime sounded, accompanied by the noise of someone speaking forcefully and what could possibly be described as a scuffle.

“Enter!” Selene said and braced herself. She wouldn’t have to wait long.

Erik Morningstar barged in, with Ensign Dima only a couple of steps behind. “I will not let you do this!” he shouted. “My people have already endured more than enough.”

“You do not have the authority to ‘let’ me do anything,” Selene reminded him, trying to remain calm. “That was the deal.”

“And I have respectfully kept my distance,” Eric growled. “But when the continued safety of my crew is at stake, I *can* and I *will* voice my concerns.”

“And just what is it that you intend to stop me from doing?” Selene shot back with icy calmness.

“Going after the Confederacy.”

“Who-” the CO of the BASTET began, when she saw the conflict in the Counselor’s face.

“I didn’t mean to cause trouble,” Nicole urged. “I was only trying to update Eric on Adriana’s condition.”

Captain Morningstar continued. “...Which is precarious, as you might imagine. I need to bring everyone home so they can recuperate, especially Adriana."

“Bringing her back to the scene of her abduction might cause a ripple effect and delay her recovery,” the Counselor admitted.

“Are you saying you agree with him?” Selene glared.

“I’m saying things have gotten a lot more complicated since we spoke earlier. There are more working parts to this than meets the eye.” All Nicole could do was watch the two Commanding Officers as their tempers flared.

Eric sat across from Selene, trying to adopt a more measured stance. "It is not an overstepping of boundaries to offer my opinion on this matter. Surely you can agree with that.”

"Opinion, yes. But the decision is mine."

Eric placed his hand on Iverson’s desk. “I urge you to take caution here. Sometimes the best offense is a strong defense. We need to bide our time-”

The ebony-haired woman had had enough. "You drag us to ORION to save your people, now you want to leave despite there being a greater need to attend to, one that affects the entire Federation?  Fine, take your crew off my ship. We are going to deal with this ourselves!" Selene paused as she looked at Erik, realizing too late that she had lost control of her emotions. Since her presumed death at the hand of the Lokustaar, it had not been the first time she'd allowed her emotions to emerge, and this troubled her. Right now though was not the time to try and understand what had happened to her. A much more pressing issue was at hand, and the expression of disbelief imprinted on the face of the Native American was more than enough to bring her back on task. Iverson closed her eyes and collected her thoughts before speaking, her voice and tone now back to what her crew as well as herself expected it to be. "I understand what you are saying, and if the situation was different I would agree and order the BASTET back to NEW ALEXANDRIA right away. We both know that it is not that easy though. We have been made aware of a threat against the Federation and it is our duty to protect the Federation from this threat. I would prefer if you and your people came along as it would greatly increase our odds of success, but if we have to go at it alone, we will."

The Captain of the BASTET paused once again and looked directly into the eyes of her counterpart from the ANUBIS. "As Commanding Officer, we have a responsability to our crew, I will not try to argue this as I entirely agree with you. As a Captain though we also have a responsability to the Federation, to protect and defend the billions upon bilions of individuals to the best of our abilities, even if it means putting our ships and everyone on board at risk. What we do today could save countless lives tomorrow."

In the blink of an eye, Erik thought of his senior staff. In as much as he knew that Adriana needed support and an environment in which she could heal, he could imagine most of the rest of them wishing to go back to the Confederacy's universe. With the BASTET currently being without a CEO or an OPS officer, Jayson and Sonja would likely offer their services to stay and help. Ambassador Bonviva might try to negotiate, to find a diplomatic solution to the situation. Maya would stay just to experience the dimensional jump, and the data she could collect. Ya'Han would probably choose to stay because Jayson was staying. He wasn't sure what Shar'El and Satella would do if given the options, but he knew enough to know the answer didn't change his response now. "I agree," Erik reluctantly confirmed. "You are right."

Nicole had been so quiet during the last exchange that the two Captains had forgotten she was there. She certainly hadn't. "Perhaps this would be a good time to leave, Sir?" she piped up. It was good to quit while they were ahead, or in this case, to at least quit while they were even.

Morningstar stood and adjusted his tunic. "I'm sorry to have intruded upon your time, and your office. It was unprofessional."

"Only if you will consider my suggestion to throw you off the ship equally so," Selene offered quietly.

=/\=
Susan Ledbetter

Writing for
Cns
USS BASTET

and

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

and

Francois Charette

Commanding Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC 18501

AND

Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA
M17-A025: USS ANUBIS: Shar'El: 35012.2300 ("One Team")
=-=
"One Team"
[the previous posts were (ANU) "Tactical Meeting" by Hanali / (BAS) "Negotiations" by 'The Three Muskateers']
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Guest Quarters
Stardate: 35012.2300

Captain Morningstar stepped into the living area, the Native American appearing physically exhausted. He made his way to the replictor and asked for a hot cup of Risean tea before making his way to the nearest cushioned living room chair.

"Hi honey," Shar'El said in a singsong voice. "You look like you had a rough day at work."

The Captain rose his eyes to see the ExO / ILO sitting directly in front of him. How could he have not seen her sitting there before now? A flood of memories came rushing into his mind. The BASTET was much smaller than the ANUBIS and the number of available quarters could not accommodate everyone in single-occupancy. Erik was informed of the arrangements that needed to be implemented and even gave his okay to them. One of the concessions he had agreed to was simply that Shar'El and he would share quarters. "I have had better days," he said the initial surprise of seeing the Commander sitting there in front of him having dissipated.

"Wow," the Ullian softly gasped. "Selene didn't hold back any punches. Telling you to leave her ship the way she did shows just how close to the edge this whole situation has brought each and every one of us."

Morningstar glared for a brief moment at Shar'El, not appreciating that her looking into his most recent memories, but the Native American quickly revised his feelings realizing that she had not *looked* into his mind but that it was he who had broadcasted those memories to her following her commenting about his day.  "It is difficult being a Captain while not on your ship," Erik admitted.

"You are not used to not being the one in charge," the ExO / ILO said as she gentle nodded her head in agreement. "Command is not meant for everyone, but those who end up in such a position find it exceptionally difficult to stop. That is why most Captains move to the next level in the chain of command when given the choice between stepping down and taking a well-earned break or taking on even more responsibilities."

"I do not see myself ever being an Admiral," Morningstar said after taking a sip of his tea.

"I do not see you as an Admiral either," Shar'El agreed. "You, like Selene, are the type of Captains who know where they are the most effective, where they can make the biggest impact to safeguard the Federation and its ideals. This is the role where you have the greatest influence and ability to affect, in a positive way, the lives of countless others. That is why you are both finding this situation difficult. I am sure that Captain Iverson wants to call upon you and your experience, but she is worried that you would see that as her being willing to share command of the BASTET, which she is not, just as much as you would not be willing to share command of the ANUBIS."

"Well, in any case, the decision has been made," Erik said before emptying the cup from its content. "We will be heading back to this other dimension and deal with the Confederacy threat. All in all, it might end up being better this way for no other reason that a runabout journey back to NEW ALEXANDRIA might have pushed the limits of our ability to work together."

Shar'El snickered before shaking her head. "Actually, I would not have gone back with you. I would have stayed here on the BASTET to help. There is something very odd about the faux-Iverson," the ExO / ILO stated. "I can understand her going by the name of Fiona. I can even accept the differences between her and Selene since she came from an entirely different dimension.  What truly bothers me though is that she has an exceptionally well-trained mind making it impossible for me to get any useable memories from her. The medical report from Doctor Bruxa and Andersson show her to be biologically nearly identical to Selene, so it leaves me to wonder where she learned to control her thoughts to such an extent?"

"You would have stayed?!?" Erik was shocked. The Captain had apparently ignored everything else Shar'El had said, focusing instead on the fact that she would not have joined him had he left the BASTET as Captain Iverson had told him to.

"Hmm," the ExO / ILO grimaced. "Guess that means I'll be sleeping on the couch tonight."

"We all have to make sacrifices for the sake of this mission," Morningstar said as he stood and began making his way to the bedroom. "Good night, *dear*," he added before vanishing into the adjacent room.

Shar'El smiled, glad to see that Erik was taking all of this in strides. Rescuing their missing officers had been much easier than they could have ever expected, but the discovery of the Confederacy and their plan to send an infiltration force had changed everything. There were no doubts that the next part of this mission would not be as easy as the first. The one advantage they possessed was that although only a single ship would be traveling to this other dimension, the knowledge, experiences and resourcefulness of two distinct crews would be at hand to go up against this latest threat.

The fact that the ExO / ILO would be able to observe the BASTET's ILO at work was just a major added bonus, one that the Commander was very much looking forward to indulge to its fullest potential.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS

Chief Medical Officer
USS BASTET
M13-B025: USS BASTET: A'Janni: 35012.2315 ("Night Watch")
"Night Watch"
[previous (ANU) "OneTeam" / (BAS) "Negotiations"]

[/\]

Setting: USS BASTET. Bridge
Stardate: 35012.2315

There was no days or nights in space. No matter what window you looked out of all you saw were distant stars set against the black infinity of space. If you were lucky and the ship you were on was in orbit of a planet, you might be able to catch an enchanting view of a world that was usually to busy or ignorant to care about someone looking down on them from so far away that they could not see them with the naked eye.

A'Janni performed another system's check, making sure that everything was working as it should. The BASTET had come to a complete stop just inside of the ORION System, and thanks to the cloaking provided by the Dimensional and Temporal drives, no one could even guess that a ship was there, waiting, preparing.

"What are you still doing on the bridge?" It was the reptilian Chief of Security who asked the question, surprised to see the one-eyes Caitian still manning the Flight Control Station. "I do not believe that you need to impress the Captain. It is obvious that she likes you."

"Likes?" A'Janni questioned to which Enel simply smiled and tapped the tip of his nose with the middle of the three-clawed fingers from his right hand. "You would be amazed as to how much I can pickup by the scents coming off certain people. It does not work for everyone as there are certain races that do not possess any sort of odor-generating glands, but for most Humanoids, I can tell you things about them that they might not even realize themselves."

"Guess I should consider myself lucky to not be Human," the Caitian sighed with a hint of relief.

"I said Humanoids, not just Humans," Zub corrected. "Unfortunately for the both of us, Caitians are one of those races that I can easily identify as I walk into a room, even if I cannot see them. Like right now, I can detect the distinct odor that indicates a high level of fatigue emanating from you."

"Alright," A'Janni sighed in exasperation. "Obviously there is no point in my arguing that point with you. I do feel physically tired, but I know that there is no way I would be able to rest even if I tried. My head is literally spinning from all of the things that I am thinking about right now. The best thing for me to do at the moment is to keep busy."

"You could always seek Doctor Andersson and see if she could not give you something that would allow you to relax," Enel suggested. "I would recommend you not trying to speak to Counselor Dima as she has been rather busy causing her to be a little more stressed than usual."

The Caitian narrowed his one good eye as he looked at the Voth. "Let me guess, you walked by her at some point and were able to get all that by her scent."

"As I said," Zub grinned. "You would be surprised as to just how much information I am able to obtain from a person's odor.  I was able to detect that she was tired and stressed in the same fashion as I am able to say the same about you. So, again, allow me to suggest that you could seek out Doctor Andersson and ask her for something to help you relax or you could just return to your quarters and indulged in a nice warm shower. There are many benefits to slipping into a shower and letting the water wash all of your troubles away."

Both ears on the Caitian's head twitch for a moment before A'Janni's gaze of Zub visibly intensified. "You and your people might have a highly sensitive sense of smell, but you should be aware that Caitians have a keen sense of hearing. There was an unmistakable emphasis in your voice, more specifically on one of the words you just said."  The towering reptilian actually appeared a little nervous as the FCO spoke. "Would you like me to tell you which word you emphasized over all of the others?"

"I am sorry," Enel offered. "I was trying to say it as politely as I could, but I failed to take into account the higher sensitivity of your ears. This, unfortunately, does not change the fact that the odor emanating from you clearly indicates more than simple fatigue on your part."

As much as A'Janni might have wanted to argue this odiferous point, his own sense of smell could confirm that there was something not quite right. Being his own scent, the Caitian could easily enough dismiss it, at least that was until it was pointed out to him by someone else.  "Fine," the one-eyed felinoid said with a heavy sigh, "you win. The bridge is yours."

"Enjoy your relaxing shower," Enel said to A'Janni as the Caitian walked passed him to board the turbolift and vanish behind the closing doors.

[/\]
Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant JG A'Janni [Access Character BIO for A'Janni]
Flight Control Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M17-A026: USS ANUBIS: Lopez: 35013.0045 ("Starry Night")
-=-=-
"Starry Night"
[Previous post: (ANU) "One Team" & (BAS) "Night Watch"]
-=-=-

Setting:  USS BASTET, Guest Quarters
Stardate: 35013.0045

She was tired, nay exhausted, both physically and mentally. At first, she feared laying down as it might cause her to recall those countless nights spent in that cold damp cell, but Nicole had reassured her that all would be fine, that she was safe here.  The welcoming softness of the mattress helped Adriana to accept the Counselor's words and the gentle warm of the blanket as is was placed over her further sealed this as being the reality she preferred over the one engraved in her memories.

Sleep soon found the traumatized woman, her body finally abandoning itself to the world around it without care. This was not the room she was accustomed to, nor was it on a ship that she called home, but its softness and warmth were attributes that she was not about to ignore. Alas, as safe as the ship was, as comforting as the sheets around her were, as protective as the mattress beneath her was, they could not shield the Hispanic woman from the nightmares that hid in her memories waiting to make their presence felt in the worst possible way they could.

In the still darkness of the bedroom, interrupted only by the soft glow of distant stars, the sound of her gentle tossing accompanied by her hushed mumbling could be barely heard at first. It did not take long before these muted sounds increased in volume and intensity making it clear that her nightmares had emerged from their hiding places in the shadowed recesses of her memories.

Her breathing became labored as she begged for the pain to stop. Although no one was there to strike her in any way, Adriana’s body responded to the repeated torturous strike against her form, her mind forcing the poor woman to relive the atrocities of her captivity with vivid accuracy.

She could feel that her eyes were not swollen as they had been, and yet she could not bring herself to open them. Not only had her body been held captive by whatever unbreakable bond had been used, but her mind had been made just as much a prisoner through depriving her of the ability of sight. Every sound Adriana heard made her fear the unthinkable, and it was only thanks to a kind and gentle soul that she had started to no longer wait in terror for the door to open.

When a troubled mind is haunted by horrific memories, any hope that might have existed in the real world rarely finds it way into the recollection of those events. Adriana could effortlessly recall the pain, the fear and the despair, but there was no sign of hope anywhere in her memories. Had their been even a single sliver of light to pierce the darkness she was lost into, Adriana might not have awakened with such fright that she leaped off the bed seeking refuge in the nearest corner she could reach.

With her eyes filled with tears and her heart threatening to beat out of her chest, Adriana scanned her surrounding with a panic-filled gaze as she wondered where she was. This was not the cell she had been held in for what had felt like an eternity.  As she gazed out the window located above the bed to see the distant specs of light, she began to remember.

As soft and gentle as the light of those distant stars was, it proved to be more than enough to force her dark memories to retreat back to the shadows of her mind.  Adriana stared at the stars, unable to move, unsure if it was her body that was unable to move or her mind that had lost all ability to command her muscles. Whatever the case was, she continued to look through the window, hearing the pounding of her heart. Her throat was as dry as a desert making it impossible for her to call out for help. Even the softest of whispers should trigger the computer’s voice recognition system, but she could not manage the simplest of words.  All she could do was to sit there, her eyes fixated by a fear she could not control on those distant stars.

It would have been easier for Adriana to reach out and touch one of those specs of light instead of conquering the paralyzing fear she had succumbed to. She knew that this room was a place where she was safe, but her body refused to accept this logic, opting instead to give in to the terror of her mind and forcing her physical form to remain frozen in space and time.

As a Counselor she knew exactly what was happening to her, the trauma of her time in captivity making itself known in full force, but there was nothing the terrified woman could do to break free from this new prison she found herself in.  This jail without walls held her more captive than any other could have done, including the one her friends had saved her from.  All she could do was to sty sitting in the corner of the room, holding onto her knees as tightly as she could to provide warmth and safety while she hoped that someone would come to rescue her from this new prison cell she had fallen into.

Her only companions during this eternal wait would be the stars beyond the window of her room, a gentle scene that only served to make Adriana realize that the endless night she was staring into, her pain and suffering, felt equally without end.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi

Lieutenant JG Adriana Lopez [Access Character BIO for Adriana Lopez]
Ship's Counselor & Junior Ambassador
USS ANUBIS
M13-B026: USS BASTET: Enel: 35013.0115 ("Rattled")
=-=
“Rattled”
Previous posts: (ANU) “Starry Night” by Marissa / (BAS) “Night Watch” by Jayson

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 7, Guest Quarters
Stardate: 35013.0115

After Erik retired to his bedroom, Shar’El read reports until giving into a luxurious stretch. She yawned. She smiled and wondered impishly what Erik dreamed about. Her mind relaxed. A familiar buzz of reptilian memories intruded. Scowling, she opened the front door before it chimed.

“I know it is late,” the scaly, 7-foot tall Voth whispered from the corridor.

“Thanks for the report.” She triggered the door to shut.

Zub Enel waved a three fingered hand between the moving door and the jamb. The door halted and reopened.

“Ensign?”

His golden eyes dilated. “Awakening someone is a perfect time for cage rattling. I understand you have a certain ‘sensitivity’ to people’s thoughts.”

“Too bad you don’t have sensitivity to mine right now.”

=-=

Krokax’s expression was dour. “I am certain I have no choice but to let the Chief of Security in no matter the hour.”

Zub, careful not to leave the Orion male nearest an open doorway, ignored his gesture to enter. “After you.”

Krokax’s gaze narrowed before he backed into his room. “If you insist. Come in.”

The Orion wore a tailored suit that shimmered a deep shade of blue expensive fabric. He settled on a small couch, his expression hard. He gestured irritably to a smallish armchair across a low coffee table. “Sit, if you’ll fit.” 

The armchair put Zub’s knees up to his chin. “One question.”

He grimaced. “A mandisa? Orion ale?”

“Nothing.”

“Can I?”

“Be my guest.”

“I am,” the Orion said sourly.

The man returned with something green and sudsy. He sipped, licked his lips, considered the taste and tilted his head before a nod. “A cut above.”

“A cut above what?”

Krokax scowled.

Zub interlaced clawed fingers. “Perhaps you feel you are being treated unfairly?” 

Krokax’s voice grated. “I returned those women.”

Zub pointed at him. “You kidnapped them.”

“They wanted an adventure. I delivered. They should be grateful.”

“One was beaten. Who did you kidnap them for?”

The Orion shouted, “Beaten? Only one? Everybody there gets beaten or tortured. More than once! Your rich little lives. You’ve no idea what suffering is.”

Zub persisted. “Did you kidnap them for Fiona?”

The man’s pupil expanded. “Beautiful, isn’t she?”

“And what else?”

The Orionid’s gaze shot passed the Voth toward Fiona’s quarters next door. “It wasn’t for her. She’s running an entirely different nightmare than the one who wanted your women.”

“Who was that?”

Krokax went completely pale. His voice quivered. “If I tell you, the one who wanted them will torture me to death, bring me back, torture me to death, and bring me back over and over until she gets bored with it. Then,” He pointed passed Zub toward Fiona’s room. “She’ll take over and I assure you, Fiona does not tire easily. I will kill myself before answering you.” He lifted his glass, but it shook so violently that the drink foamed up. 

Zub stood. “I will ask Fiona.”

=-=

Fiona, in a white sleeveless blouse and tailored green pants, smiled as her door slid aside. “An unannounced visit by a tall, dark and handsome …,” Her gray eyes glinted. “Whatever you are. Come in.”

She stepped back to let him enter a room the opposite layout of Krokax’s. She swayed her hips as she walked to her couch. She sat and indicated an identical armchair for Zub. She smiled up at him coyly. “What is this? A bed check?”

Zub avoided the chair. He knelt and sat on his heels so his crested head was eye level with her. “Neither you or Krokax are wearing bed clothes.”

She gave him a pout. “Disappointed?”

“Suspicious,” he said. “I remind you that Security is in the corridor.”

She gave her long blond hair a shake that sent it over a shoulder and down her front. “Lest I flee my captivity?” She locked him with her gray-eyed gaze.

He said, “Just one question.”

“That’s kept you awake while everyone else sleeps. Drink? How about a mandisa?

“No. Thanks.”

“Sure?” Her eyes sparkled. “They’re quite stimulating.”

“No.”

She pouted again, her lipstick juicy red. “So,” she stretched dramatically so as to display all her curves. She crossed a bare arm over her trim waist and laid the other along one thigh. Her eyebrows arched expectantly.

“About Krokax … “

She huffed derisively. “He’s the least of your worries.”

“Then who is?”

She left the couch and knelt before him. Her eyes explored his crest. “I see why your captain wanted you assigned. You are so interesting.” She put a warm palm on his crest. “These different little bumps. What are they for? I mean evolutionarily. Armor?”

Her hands moved gently over his crest. Zub’s fine down between his scales stood up and danced. 

“Oh. Feathers, too! And you’re turning pink!” As she stroked, she looked at him, her pupils wide.

Zub felt swamped by a tidal wave of distraction from the woman with his captain’s face and body. He reproached himself for not anticipating this from Fiona. He forcefully took her arms and separated her from his head. Her left forearm felt oddly solid. He looked at it. 

She yanked her arms away and covered them with her hands. “Scar tissue,” she said, her seriousness indistinguishable Captain Iverson’s. “Your Selene hasn’t suffered.” 

“I would not know.” Zub felt overheated. 

“Oh, you want to,” Fiona said, her smile returned. “I felt it. Admit it to yourself. You want to know Selene a lot better. Like this.” She smiled mischievously as she reached toward his head again.

He grabbed her wrists hard. “Stop it!”

Her pupils dilated. Her face flushed. Her voice wobbled. “Are you going to hurt me?”

A silent klaxon blared in his head. He let her go. “This interview is over.” He stood and headed to her door. 

“We’ll take it slower next time,” she called after him.

=-=

Zub froze in the corridor as he worked to cool his physical reactions. Shar’El stood with her feet apart, arm akimbo. Her face radiated disgust. The security detail kept their distance. 

“With me,” she said to him. The turbolift opened. 

Inside, she let the turbolift close but didn’t request a floor. She glared upward. “Never send a man to do a woman’s job.”

His scales flushed. “I exited immediately.”

“You fled.”

“Did you pick up anything?”

Her angry expression cooled. “That Orion is unreadable. Something physiological. That — woman — didn’t drop her guard. You ….” 

Zub hid his embarrassment. “Two unreadable individuals, dressed, not sleeping. Feels off.”

“Something’s brewing. I *suggest* you keep alert.”

“Yes, sir.”

She exited the turbolift.

“Bridge,” he said, his scales blazing red again.

=-=
David Michael Inverso

Chief Security and Tactical Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977

“My brother is undoubtedly arrogant," Tyrion Lannister replied. "My father is the soul of avarice, and my sweet sister Cersei lusts for power with every waking breath. I, however, am innocent as a little lamb. Shall I bleat for you?”
 - George R. R. Martin
M17-A027: USS ANUBIS: Bruxa: 35013.0130 ("Do All That You Can")
=-=
"Do All That you Can"
[the previous posts were (ANU) "Starry Night" / (BAS) "Rattled"]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 35013.0130

With so few extra quarters available some difficult decisions had to be made. Ya'Han and Jayson were assigned to the same room. It made sense if you considered that they were an item. It made less sense when taking into account the rift that now stood between them. Relationships are never easy, vulnerable to a million and one thing on the best of days. When living and working on a spaceship, those pitfalls were even more numerous.

Satella would have been more than happy to share quarters with Jayson. She was not truly expecting anything to come out of it. All that the Mikulak woman wanted was to give the Human man the chance to rest. Thinking of him spending any time alone with the Nylaan, Bruxa could only imagine it turning into a nightmare. From what she had heard, the two of them could barely stand being one net to the other now. Too many things had changed since the arrival and later death of Jayson's Lokustaar clone.

So, instead of spending a quiet night with Jayson, Satella volunteered to stay in Sickbay. There more than enough beds for her to lay down on and rest. Plus, if there were any medical emergencies, she could react within seconds.  Sofia had been kind enough to agree to this, reminding the fellow CMO to rest. Andersson figured that Bruxa would likely feel more at ease in Sickbay than in some strange and crowded quarters.

Satella never made it to any of the beds. The comfort of Sofia's office chair proved to be more than enough for the tired Doctor. There, she could keep an eye on Adriana as well. At least for as long as the CMO managed to keep her eyes open. When she heard someone talking to her, Bruxa first believed that it was a dream. What was being said made no sense though. "Should you not be watching her?" and "If you could not stay awake, why stay in this office?"

Bruxa almost fell out of the chair when she opened her eyes. There, sitting in front of her was the BASTET's ILO. The woman with the auburn locks seemed puzzled than amused. Apparently scaring someone awake the way she did was a source of great delight.  "Can I help you?" Satella managed to ask, forcing her eyes as wide open as they could go.

"You are the medical officer on duty, are you not?" Gemma's tone was much less a question than a statement. The ILO was trying to make a point, but Satella could not figure it out. Maybe if she had been woken up less abruptly things might have been different. Right now, Dr. Bruxa needed to still figure out which way was up.

The CMO finally confirmed the quizzical statement. "Yes, I am. Would it make it better if I said that I *was* until I fell asleep?"

"Doctor," Gemma said sounding almost annoyed. "I care nothing about what you are or should have been doing. I am simply here to make sure that you do what you are sworn to do."

Bruxa was more confused than ever before. What was Gemma talking about?  "I'm a Doctor, and I have always conducted myself accordingly. So, I have no idea what you are talking about." Satella's thought came to a sudden and complete stop. Was the ILO referring to her the kiss she and Jayson shared in the craft as they escaped from ORION? The Mikulak woman was not sure if she should feel upset or scared. Why would this be of any importance to Gemma or anyone else on the BASTET? Was this a way for the ILO to blackmail her in some way?

"You conduct yourself accordingly?" This time the words were nothing more and nothing less than a question. A very sharply voiced question, but a question nonetheless.

"Yes." Bruxa was nervously waiting for what would come next.

"Then, it may be wise for you to 'act accordingly' now." The statement made no sense until Satella followed Gemma's stare. On one of the monitors behind her was a security feed from Adriana's quarters. The fact that the bed was now empty instantly caught Satella's attention.

"Where is she?" The CMO turned to face the ILO only to discover that she was no longer there. Had Gemma even been there in the first place or had this just been a very strange dream? Whatever had happened, the fact remained that Adriana was no longer sleep in her bed.  A quick bio-scan of the room revealed that someone was there though. Shallow respiration, elevated heart rate. The odds were that it was Lopez, and she was in distress.

A glance at the time display hinted that no one else would be readily available. This meant that was only one thing to do. Grabbing a medical kit as she rushed out of the office, Satella ran to Adriana's side.

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Guest Quarters (Adriana's)
Stardate: 35013.0115

"ADRIANA!?!" Satella plea triggered noreply. "Adriana, where are you?" A quick scan of her medical tricorder directed the CMO to the Counselor's bedroom. It only took a few seconds for Bruxa to make it there. In the near complete darkness of the room, Lopez was tucking in the corner, her gaze locked on the window above her bed. "What happened? Are you hurt?"  Still no replies. The facial expression making it perfectly clear that the woman was frozen with fear.  "ADRIANA! Talk to me!"

Nothing could break Adriana's catatonic state. Easily feeling the woman's heart racing, the CMO opted on the only course of action that she could consider at the moment. Quickly reaching for a hypospray, Bruxa pressed it against her neck and injected the tranquilizing agent.  Seconds later, Adriana's body went limp and collapsed onto the floor like an old rag doll.

In a panic, Bruxa reached for her comm badge and called out the only way she could think of doing. "HELP!"

=-=
Rachel Jackie Johnson

Lieutenant JG Satella Bruxa [Access Character BIO for Satella Bruxa]
Chief Medical Officer
USS ANUBIS

[Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint. - Mark Twain]
M17-A028: USS ANUBIS: Bonviva-Shar'El: 35013.0135 ("Tea and Hope and Memories")
"Tea and Hope and Memories"
[the previous posts were (ANU) "Do All That you Can" / (BAS) "Rattled"]

=/\=
“Where there is tea, there is hope.”
-from Arthur Wing Pinero’s “Sweet Lavender”

=/\=
Setting: USS BASTET, Mess Hall
Stardate: 35013.0135

There was stillness in the early morning hours, many of the crews of the ANUBIS and BASTET were resting or taking the overnight shift; so that the lounge was quiet.  Dr. Sofia Andersson came in from her shift in Sickbay; knowing she should try to get a few hours of rest but was way too awake for that.  She reasoned to herself that a small warm cup of tea was just the thing to get her settled.

Walking into the Mess Hall, she saw in the dimmed room there was one bright spot indicating someone else was here; at least someone else had the same idea she did.  As she made her way to the replicator, she heard a voice which confirmed her suspicion as to who the other person was.  “Couldn’t sleep either?”

Recognizing the familiar voice of the Ambassador, Sofia grabbed her mug of tea and walked over to the Bolian/Human woman.  “Hello Ambassador,” she said.  Looking at the azure woman who was sitting down with her own mug of steaming tea and a pile of PADDs, what stood out the most was the small puppy who sat on his own stool next to the Ambassador and had a small bowl of water.

Xana smiled as she indicated the chair across from her.  “Please join…us,” she said looking at the puppy who was sitting up with his tongue hanging out, as if to smile.  There was a slight “thump-thump” sound that Sofia heard she realized was his tail hitting the back of his chair.  

“I’m honored, Ambassador,” Sofia smiled as she sat down.

The Bolian/Human woman shook her head and said, “I thought we were past the title phase.”

Sofia tilted her head to the side as she considered the comment.  “I was taking my lead from you,” she admitted.  Sipping her tea she said, “Last time we were on the same ship, you were certainly keen not to use your title.  But this time you have no problem with it.”

Xana’s violet eyes nearly twinkled at that for a moment.  Years before, the blonde haired doctor and the white haired Ambassador were briefly together on the USS PHOENIX.  Sofia’s Sickbay had been a respite to the turmoil on the ship for Xana, despite the personal heartache and upheaval she was going through on the ship.  It was in that respite found in Sickbay that Sofia discovered in the truth hidden in Xana’s DNA; that mysterious symptoms were really pointing to a larger degenerative disease and she was dying.  If not for Andersson’s calm, dogged, demeanor, and her willingness to stand up to her own Command, Xana would never have been diagnosed with her illness; something the Bolian/Human woman was very aware of and appreciative of.  “Can I tell you a secret?”

“Of course,” Sofia answered.

“I prefer going without the title,” the azure woman admitted, sotto voce.  

The doctor leaned in and matched her voice to that of the other woman.  “It’s not a secret if I already knew it,” she smiled.  

The two women drank their tea, nibbled on the biscotti that was on the table, while catching each other up on the last few years.

=/\=
Setting: USS BASTET, Corridor
Stardate: 35013.0145

Shar'El was wandering the corridors as she thought back to what had taken place. Had she and the rest of the ANUBIS's senior staff been on their ship, the ExO / ILO would have simply made her way to the IGC where she could have quietly contemplated what had transpired. Having access to her surveillance systems would not have been a bad thing either, but instead all she could rely on was her memories and what little she was able to get from the two guests from another dimension.

Despite years of training, Shar'El telepathic ability was still very much limited to her being able to see memories of someone who stood directly in her line-of-sight. Telepaths from countless races had been recruited by Admiral Koniki in order to try and expand the operative's range of perception, but to no avail.  At least none that she could consciously control. There were times when she would get some sort of 'feeling' as she experienced just before Ensign Enel came to her quarters.

The sensation felt more like the echo of a feeling, but there was no denying the fact that she was able to telepathically sense the occasional thing without actually directly looking at the source. That the person was experiencing strong emotions helped a great deal, an important note that the ExO / ILO had been quick to identify. Still, this ability was unreliable and could certainly not be counted upon to give her any notable advantage in their current situation.

As well aware of her telepathic limitations as she was, Shar'El knew better than to advertise said limitations to others. The ILO grinned as she thought of Gemma and how she would most certainly agree to that fact. No operative would ever allow anyone, be them friend of foe, to know the constraints of their abilities, be them physical or telepathic.

That is why the ExO / ILO did not try to dissuade the Sec/Tac from his plan. At best she would try to get something from the two guests by locking eyes on them as they greeted the imposing lizard at their door. Shar'El hoped that the sight of him might be enough to cause them to let a fleeting and potentially useful memory slip out, but alas that did not happen. All that she managed to see was how Zub Enel made a fool of himself by trying to draw information out of two individuals who knew how to pay the game far better than he did.

Shar'El was sure that in time, and with some tutelage from the BASTET's resident ILO, Zub Enel would learn how to deal with individuals the likes of Krokus and Fiona.  The thoughts of the ExO / ILO were abruptly interrupted when a frantic call came from Doctor Satella Bruxa.  It was only one word, but that word was more than enough to indicate the seriousness of the emergency.

Asking for details might make the situation worse, so the ExO / ILO decided that immedaite actions were better. "Computer, locate Doctor Satella Bruxa!"

=/\=
Setting: USS BASTET, Mess Hall
Stardate: 35013.0150

The general tranquility of the moment was interrupted by an unexpected call sent through the ship's communicaton web.

=/\= HELP! =/\ came the plea from the CMO of the ANUBIS.  

Sofia tapped her communication and leapt up, followed quickly by Xana.  “Where are you?  What’s going on?” Sofia asked.  

=/\= Hurry! It's Adriana. =/\=

Sofia and Xana looked at one another for a single second as they analysed the significance of the reply.  "She needs help," Andersson said already heading for the room's closest exit.

"Sounds like they both do," Xana added, less than a stride behind the rushing blonde-haired CMO.

=/\=
Setting: USS BASTET, Guest Quarters (Adriana's)
Stardate: 35013.0152

Shar'El was the third to respond to the call, Doctor Andersson and Ambassador Bonviva already by the Counselor/Junior Ambassador's side.

"What happened?" The ExO / ILO demanded.

"I don't know," Satella said crying as she watched Sofia and Xana try to make sense of what they were seeing. "She just wouldn't respond to anything. Her heart rate was so fast that I had no other choice but to sedate her, but now she feels so... lifeless."

"She is in a catatonic state," the BASTET's CMO stated. "Even under sedation her heart is pounding more than it should. Give me a minute to see what I can do here. As soon as she is stable enough, I will have her transported to Sickbay.

Satella Bruxa’s plea of “HELP” caused quite the commotion amongst the Staff.  Those who had come to answer the call were now milling about in the living area of the quarters waiting for some news about Adriana’s condition.  

“Go back to your quarters or go back on duty,” Shar-El said quietly to the ANUBIS crew as Sarena Valentine did the same with the BASTET crew.  

Once the Ullian ExO had spoken with her crew she made her way back to the Ambassador, who was now standing off to the side with the newly acquired puppy curled up at her feet.  During times of negotiation, the azure woman did an admirable job of “putting on a show” for whomever they were talking to.  But the thought pass-through her mind that there was no show to put on now; and the emotions were clear on the Bolian/Human’s face.

“We’ll keep you updated on Adriana’s condition,” Shar’El said quietly.  “You can go back to your quarters.”  The would-be discussion unexpectedly ended when Sofia let out a sigh of frustration.

"What's going on?" Xana inquired.

"I don't think there is anything that I can do for her. The problem is not biological but rather psychological. There is something happening in that head of hers that I just can't stop and I am afraid that it might end up killing her. I could always put he in statis but it would only serve to delay what is likely to happen."

"NO! You can't let her die like that," Satella pleaded.

It was not like Doctor Bruxa to be like this, the woman was a talented physician but that did not shield her from the raw emotional impact of seeing her dearest friend in such a condition. The expression of powerlessness on Sofia's face only made matters worse, so Shar'El decided to act in the only way she could.

The ExO / ILO gently took hold of the Counselor's head. "Keep monitoring her vitals," Shar'El said before narrow her eyes and focusing her thoughts and telepathic skills onto the unresponsive woman in front of her

=-=
Setting: Mindscape
 
It was general knowledge within the Federation that Ullians could scan someone's mind to see their memories, but it was not as well know that some members of that race could also enter a person's mind and implant memories.  Shar'El belonged to that elite few.  Scanning through the Counselor's memories, the ExO / ILO quickly identify one that she would be able to use.  The memory was of her learning that her missing sister might be found on ORION. It was a happy memory, one that unfortunately was surrounded by several more much less pleasant recollections. Her time in captivity, the repeated beatings and torture. Using that one single happier memory would not be easy but Shar'El had no other option if she wanted to resolve this matter quickly.

Using elements from other memories, Shar'El began constructing a memory, one that saw Amanda and Adriana together, on the ANUBIS, talking and laughing. The Ullian found it strange that so many memories of her missing sister were present in the woman's mind, but this was certainly not the time to start looking for answers to this mystery.  Once the memory was given enough substance to be accepted by the Junior Ambassador's mind the Commander slowly withdrew, watching with relief as the image expended.

=/\=
Setting: USS BASTET, Guest Quarters (Adriana's)
Stardate: 35013.0155

Shar'El gazed into Adriana's eyes and smiled when the Counselor blinked.

"Where is Amanda?" She asked as she looked around, realizing after a few seconds where she was. "What happened?"

"It was a dream, nothing more," The ExO / ILO said dismissing all that had taken place as if it had been nothing more than what she had said. "Let's get you to Sickbay, just to make sure that everything is alright with you."

Xana moved in and offered Adriana a hand to get her back onto her feet while the puppy wagged its tail as fast as he could echoing the happiness everyone was experiencing at the moment.  As the Ambassador exited the room with her Junior aide firmly in her arm, Satella took hold of Shar'El's arm to make sure she would look in her direction as she said 'thank you' without making a sound.

=/\=
Setting: USS BASTET, Corridor outside Sickbay
Stardate: 35013.0230

With Adriana comfortably resting on one of Sickbay's medical beds, Doctor Bruxa exited the main treatment area and made her way to Shar'El and Xana who, along with everyone else, had been told to stay out to avoid people crowding the medical team. "She is fine and will recuperate. Now, she needs to rest as you all do. Don;t worry, Sofia and I have her and we will make sure that she comes out of this okay.  We’ll keep you updated on her condition,” the CMO added before making her way back into the BASTET's Sickbay. “You can go back to your quarters and rest.”

Xana had been nibbling her lip, her eyes never straying from the Sickbay doors, although after a moment she finally did answer Shar-El.  “When do you think Adriana will be able to see people?” the azure woman asked.

The Executive Officer had the same thought; they had been standing outside for some time.  It was clear that the medical professionals needed time and space to treat Adriana.  “You and I are not doctors,” Shar’El said softly but firmly.  “We’ll have to rely on Doctors Bruxa and Andersson to let us know when Adriana is awake and able to see people.”  

The azure woman nodded at that; understanding that was the only thing Shar’El could say.  “You know how rooms are scarce... and we have to bunk together like at the Academy?”  When Shar-El didn’t say anything, Xana continued on, “I was supposed to room with Adriana.  But I didn’t go into our room because I was too wide awake and I didn’t want to keep her up, so I went to the Mess Hall first.”  

It did not take a telepath, or one with Counselor training, to guess that the Bolian/Human woman was blaming herself.  The recrimination in her voice, the unshed tears in her violet eyes, were indication enough of that.  But Shar’El was a telepath, and even though she had promised to never scan the memories of her crew, Xana’s emotional turmoil was radiating off of her.  There were layers of guilt, and pressure, beyond this moment that the telepath could sense.  

“You’re not a doctor or a medical professional,” Shar’El pointed out calmly.

The Ambassador’s eyes never left the Sickbay doors, but it was clear her mind was somewhere else.  “No, I’m not. But I pu--”  she began to say before she cut herself off.  Shaking herself she said, “Sorry, you didn’t want a confession from me.”

“It’s ok,” Shar’El said.  “Why not try to get some sleep?”

“Sure, I can try that,” Xana agreed as she turned to walk away.  

Shar’El, perhaps knowing the Ambassador after all this time, realized she had to pin down something.  “You’re not going to the quarters that you were assigned...are you?”

The Bolian/Human stopped a few feet away, turned and gave a sad smile.  “See you do know me.”  Another time, Xana would have made a quip; but at that moment she didn’t have it in her.  Exhaling she said, “The EAGLE-5 has a couple of barcaloungers.”  When the Executive Officer of the ANUBIS clearly did not seem to comprehend what that was, the Ambassador explained.  “Overstuffed recliners.”  Waving as she walked away with D'Artagnan, “Night, Shar’El.”

=/\=
Sarah Albertini-Bond
USS ANUBIS

With a little help from:

Tiffany Reeve

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS

Chief Medical Officer
USS BASTET
M13-B027: USS BASTET: Iverson-Morningstar: 35013.0745 ("Pre-Mission Briefing")
---
"Pre-Mission Briefing"
(Previous Post: (ANU) "Tea and Hope and Memories" / (BAS) "Rattled")
---

"Why do you always complicate things that are really quite simple? Give me your hand please, Michael. Don't slouch. One... two..."
- Mary Poppins, jumping into the sidewalk chalk drawing

Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 1, Observation Lounge 
Stardate: 35013.0745

Selene sat at the end of the table with Sarena to her right, the two women wanted to discuss a few things before the 0800 mission briefing started.

"I had Gemma check the Jump and Dimensional drives first thing this morning, we are ready to go," Commander Valentine reported with glee.

"You sound anxious to get this mission started," Iverson pointed out, the Captain as calm and collect as always.

"I am more eager to end this mission and see Captain Morningstar along with his officers off the BASTET," Sarena bluntly explained, the Commander never having had an issue with being perfectly honest with her Commanding Officer. "It will be nice to have things go back to normal, well as normal as things ever get for us.  Let us be honest, getting woken up in the middle of the night by a frantic call for help stands well beyond what either one of us would qualify as *normal*."

"Call for help in the middle of the night?" Selene said almost grinning. "The distress signal from the Masters while in orbit of PA-HA-SA? The Code-Black emergency from Lieutenant A'Janni while he was protecting Grand Duke Krayss? I also believe that the 'call for help' from CAIT warning us of a potential attack, was received rather early in the morning."

"You have made your point," Sarena sighed. "Getting woken up in the middle of the night because of a call for help is more normal than I wanted to admit it but having the senior officers of the ANUBIS here is still not what we are used to dealing with."

As much as Iverson admired Captain Morningstar, the Commanding Officer of the USS BASTET had to agree that her First Officer was correct. Things had certainly not been 'normal' as of late.

=====
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 1, Bridge
Stardate: 35013.0745

The Native American stood a meter of so from the door leading to the Observation Lounge, not wanting to trigger its opening before it was time. Erik could easily imagine that Selene, like himself, made the most of the time before such mission briefings to make sure that everything would be covered.

"What are you doing out here?"Shar'El asked as she walked up to her Captain. "Should you not be in there," she added pointing with her head to the Observation Lounge's door.

"Not my ship, therefore not my meeting," the Native American stated with a hint of displeasure in his voice. Thinking it best to change the subject, Erik moved onto something else. "How is Adriana?"

"She is doing as well as can be expected," the Commander replied. "That poor girl went through hell in more ways than one. All she wanted to do was to find her missing sister, and instead of getting her closer to that goal, the lead she followed brought her into an entire dimension of trouble. I know that it does little to make any of this better or easier, but Lopez is a remarkably strong woman, that is why she survived the countless beatings she was on the receiving end of. There are many others out there who would not have lasted half as long."

Erik raised a single eyebrow as he looked straight at his First Officer. Shar'El promised not to scan the memories of any member of the ANUBIS' crew without their permission, so how could she have obtained such precise knowledge about what Adriana had endured? Taken into account everything else he had heard about what happened, Morningstar dismissed his misgivings knowing that Shar'El would not have done anything unless it was absolutely necessary.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 4, Astrometrics Lab
Stardate: 35013.0745

The two Chief Science Officer were going about their respective tasks as if they had been there for quite some time, which was the case. As different as Maya and Misaki were, one being a shapeshifting Shillian while the other was a Human of Asian descent, the two women shared an unparallel love for science and everything that dealt with it.

The upcoming mission to another dimension provided a golden opportunity for them to explore a strange new world, to seek out new civilizations, to boldly go where only their imaginations could have taken them before. Maya had spent the greater portion of last night working on understanding as much as possible about the dimension they were going to be entering, trying to identify any specific differences that might cause problem or give the crew of the BASTET an advantage should trouble arise.  Misaki on her side had scanned each of the alien crafts resting in the shuttle bay, paying extra attention to the odds layout of the additional equipment on their hulls. From a distance, the ships appeared almost normal, but the closer one got to them the stranger they became.

The craft owned and piloted by Krokus as nothing special to look at, an elongated cube-shaped main hull with wings sticking out. The additional cables and conduits make it evident that a great deal of personal modifications had been brought to the craft.

The same could be said about the ship Fiona had used to come aboard. The main design was easily recognizable but there were a lot of strange and mysterious additions and modifications that left the Chief Science Officer of the BASTET perplexed.

Misaki caught a glimpse of the time display and quickly searched the Astrometrics lab for Maya. "We are going to be late," the Asian woman said. "We have a mission briefing at 0800. We better get going now. I would hate for either one of us to try and explain to our respective Captain why we were not there on time."

"Captain Morningstar knows me well enough to understand that when there is a scientific mystery at hand, I tend to lose all notion of time. This would not be the first time it happened, and I am sure that he accepts the fact that it will not be the last. I mean, he has the choice between having me there unable to answer his questions or give me a few extra minutes so that I can be of use during such meetings. I do try my best to be there on time, but unfortunately scientific research follows a schedule all of its own."

Misaki could not help but smile as the explanation given, an explanation that she could easily hear herself give.  Still, it would not be a bad thing if the two of them made it to the meeting on time, this despite her wanting to stay and uncover the secrets of the ship the doppelganger of Captain Iverson had used to come aboard the BASTET.

=====
Setting: USS BASTET, Corridor
Stardate: 35013.0745  

The redhead Engineer stretched her arms as far as wide as she could, trying her best to work out the kinks out of her muscles.  Just as she did this, her closed fist came in contact with someone's face.  Sonja was horrified until she noticed who the person was. "Oh, it's only you."

"Good morning to you too," Jayson growled as he quickly stepped out into the corridor allowing the door to close behind him as he glanced back as if to make sure no one was following.

"Where are you going in such a hurry?" Sonja asked, carefully studying the man's face to see if she was going to believe his answer or not.

"We have a mission briefing at 0800," Stark replied. "I just do not want to be late."

"There is more," the redhead mused waving a single finger over the man's face. "I may not be a telepath like Shar'El, but I can tell when someone is not telling me the whole truth. Trust me, after spending so much time with ANI, I have become quite the expert at seeing micro-expressions on people. Well, most people, Captain Morningstar tends to go all 'channeling the spirits of his ancestors' when he starts talking about something serious.

"I just do not want to be late," Jayson reaffirmed before pushing his way past Sonja who would have followed him had the door to the quarters from which he had just emerged had not opened once again.

"Where is Jayson?" Ya'Han asked, visibly concerned.

"He's heading that way," Sonja said gesturing in the general direction the man had taken. "Things are still not back to normal with you two? Don’t get me wrong, I strongly believe that you can do a lot better than *him*, but if he makes you happy, that's what counts."

"Since my undercover mission with his clone, nothing has been normal between us," Ya'Han sadly admitted. "I am not even sure if it will ever be normal again. I know that I was not ready to talk about it and unconsciously pushed him away, but I thought he understood and would give me the time I needed. Now, he seems to be doing everything he can to keep his distances."

"He's a man," Sonja said with conviction. "They are not that difficult to figure out. Just pin him to a floor mat as you have done so many times before and ask him what his problem is.  I am sure that Adriana would agree but right now she has other things on her mind."

"It would be nice to see how she is doing," Ya'Han said, forcing a smile on her lips as she tried her best to no longer think about Jayson.

"I am sure that we will have a few minutes once this mission briefing is done and over with," the engineer said. "Tell you want, we will go and pay her a visit."

"That would be nice," the Nylaan with the black and red hair said before the two women made their way to the nearest turbolift.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Office of the CMO
Stardate: 35013.0745

Doctor Bruxa walked into the office joining Doctor Andersson and Counselor Dima, the two of them sharing a quick 'on-the-go' breakfast.

"Here," Sofia said offering a small plate of freshly replicated croissants. "I know that my telling you to sit down and rest is a waste of time, so at the very least have something to eat."

Satella accepted one of the offered pastries with a shy smile. "Thank you."

"How are you doing?" Nicole inquired.

"Adriana is doing all right," the physician answered, not realizing that the answer had nothing to do with the question. "She is resting and is with Ambassador Bonviva at the moment. I think both of them needed to see the other."

"That is nice to hear," the joint Trill said, "but that was not the question. How are *you* doing?" Nicole repeated.

"You better answer her," Sofia teased. "When she gets like that, there is no denying her what she wants.

Nicole fired a quick sideways glare at the woman sitting on the other side of the desk. "It is not as bad as she makes it to be," Dima stated in her defense.

"I never said that it was a bad thing," the Doctor added, making sure that both Nicole and Satella saw the playfully teasing wink that followed.

"I am all right," Bruxa reassured. "A little tired, but ready for go to the mission briefing set for 0800. Plus, I am sure that both Captain Morningstar and Captain Iverson will want an update as to the state of our patient."

"Good," Sofia said offering another croissant to Satella. "We can finish breakfast on the way there."

=====
Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 35013.0745  

The Bolian/Human woman sat on the edge of the bed, her azure hand caringly holding onto the pale white hand of the Hispanic Junior Ambassador.

"You gave us all quite a fright last night," Xana whispered to the woman resting on the medical care bed.

"I'm sorry," Adriana said, her voice filled with remorse.

"I did not say that to you to make you feel guilty," the Ambassador said sternly while keeping her voice to nothing more than a gentle whisper. "None of this was your fault. I just wanted to let you know that there are a lot of people who care about you, and that is something you should be happy about.  It means that you have made a good impression of all of them."

"If you say so," the Junior Ambassador said, not sounding overly convinced.

"Fine," Xana chuckled. "Don't accept that you have been a positive influence for a lot of people, just accept that you have been so for one person."

"You?" Adriana questioned tilting her head to one side as much as she could.

"Maybe, maybe not," the azure woman teased. "You will just have to get better and figure it out on your own. In the meantime, just rest.  There is a mission briefing at 0800 and Ishould be there."

Adriana acknowledged with a soft nod of her head, holding on to the Ambassador's hand a little tighter as she went to get up.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Turbolift heading to the Bridge
Stardate: 35013.0745

"I heard that you had some trouble last night," A'Janni said breaking the silence that had walked in with the trio.

"Trouble? It was Counsellor Lopez who required medical attention, not I." The Ensign quickly said.

"He means with our *other* guests," Gemma said in a way that strongly hinted to her rolling her eyes even though no one saw her do it.

"My questioning them did not... quite go as planned," Enel admitted, the Voth now appearing visibly shorter than he had been mere seconds ago.

"That is what you get for teaming with her," the ILO said, not trying to hide her frustration and general dislike of the person in question.

Zub was about to say something when A'Janni stopped him by tapping his short stubby nose, the Caitian hinting that the Voth should make use of his heightened sense of smell to pick up the obvious loathing their ILO fostered for her counterpart from the ANUBIS.  Not wanting to risk summoning her more dangerous personality, Enel opted to remain quiet until the turbolift reached its destination -- Deck 1."

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 1, Observation Lounge
Stardate: 35013.0750

"Almost time," Sarena stated after looking at the time display located above the screen behind the Captain.  "Shall we let them in?"

"We better," Selene said looking at the relatively small conference room trying to figure out how they would all fit in for the meeting.

=====
Setting: USS BASTET, Guest Quarters (Fiona's)
Stardate: 35013.0755

The woman with the flowing blonde hair gave the distinct impression that she was tired of waiting. She understood and accepted that upon her arrival things would not move forward as Selene and the others all tried to understand what was happening. By now though things should have been settled and the BASTET well on its way to the other dimension and the space station.

Hel had made her plans clear and there was little room for delays, so if Selene was not going to take the decision and bring the BASTET to where it needed to be, Fiona would have to do it herself.

---
Francois Charette

Commanding Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC 18501

AND

Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA

Also
 
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) 
M17-A029: USS ANUBIS: Stark: 35013.0755 ("Alone")
"Alone"
[previous (ANU) "Pre-Mission Briefing" / (BAS) "Pre-Mission Briefing"]

[/\]
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35013.0755

He was standing there, alone, a blank expression about his face as the two Doctors and one Counselor walked out of the turbolift.  Jayson greeted them with a silent nod of his head before returning his gaze onto the stars being displayed on the forward view screen.

"I'll catch up with you two later," Satella said as she left the Doctor and Counselor couple in order to head toward Jayson. "Are you okay? You seem troubled. Did something happen between you and Ya'Han?"

The first question had been innocent enough, her asking if he was okay, but her second question betrayed her motives, but right now he didn't care. It was not like denying how he felt would change things. "I'm fine, and no, nothing happened between us, and by nothing I do mean nothing, so you have no reasons to be jealous."

The Doctor was surprised by the rudeness of his reply, but she did not let it get to her. Satella understood that he was in pain and his lashing out was not directed at her. She wished that she could reach out and take away his pain, or at the very least show him that he did not need to be alone in dealing with this.  In matters of the heart, things were never that simple though, and the CMO knew this.  Jayson was this way because he still had feelings for Ya'Han, this despite the way she had treated him. So, this meant that there was no room in his heart for someone like her, the best she could do at the moment was to be there for him as a friend, understanding and supportive as best she could.

She could not think of anything to say, so instead Satella just reached out and took Jayson's hand into hers. The gesture was a simple one, but it conveyed what she needed to -- that he was not alone, no matter how he might have felt.

They gazed into each other's eyes for a few seconds, long enough for them to stop feeling the universe around them, at least until the hissing sound of the turbolift doors was heard indicating that someone else was arriving.  Jayson quickly identified the two women thanks to their red and mixture of black and red hair. The reflexe to let go of Satella's hand was instant but not fast enough to avoid them from seeing the interlaced hands.

"Shall we go in?" Satella said moving toward Sonja and Ya'Han as if to intercept them, or at the very least give Jayson time to collect his thoughts so that he would not be caught like a 'dear in headlights', as the Terran expression went.

Ya'Han easily made her way around the approaching Doctor, keeping her eyes solely focused on Jayson. It was not like Ya'Han to be jealous as it was not an emotion she believed herself to have the right to experience. Everyone had the right to be the person they wanted to be, the person they needed to be. After all, that belief was what had allowed her to escape the tyranny of her father.  What she did feel thought was an urgent need to understand what was happening in order to protect herself as best she could. The Nylaan was no stranger to being hurt, physically as well as emotionally, but those experiences made her that much more wary about putting herself in a situation where she might suffer pain that way again.

"Jayson?" She softly asked, trying to look into his eyes.

He turned to look back at her, her face framed by the now black-colored hair she so hated. As strong willed as Ya'Han was, her hair had always been her greatest weakness, allowing anyone to easily gage her mood and emotions. Seeing all of the color drained from her hair was all he needed to know how much the simple gesture had affected her.  Part of him felt sorry that she witnessed this, but he found that another part of him found comfort and even a dash of delight in seeing her like this.

"It's nothing," he assured her. "She a friend who cares about me, a friend who acknowledges that I am in pain. A friend that simply wants to help."

"Jayson, I want to help you too," she said to him, taking hold of his hand in the same manner that Satella had.

"When you went on your covert mission, did you want to help him as well?" He asked, allowing a fraction of his pain to surface.  "Did you want to 'help me' after you came back and pushed me away?"

"Jayson, please, give me a chance to explain and to make it up to you."

There was a hint of green starting to appear in the Nylaan's hair, but the Terran jumped in before the change could truly be noticeable by anyone else. "Not right now. We have a mission briefing to go to. Maybe after," he said pulling his hand from hers before making his way to the Observation Lounge.

[/\]
Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant Jayson Stark [Access Character BIO for Jayson Stark]
Chief of Operations
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M13-B028: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: 35013.0755 ("Together")
"Together"
Previous posts: (ANU) "Alone" & (BAS) "Pre-Mission Briefing"

///^\\\  
Setting: USS BASTET, Turbolift
Stardate: 35013.0755

It was rare to see the two CSciO outside of the Astrometrics lab, even more so together. To see them like this was a rare oddity, and that was even before considering that they were both completely silent. If it was not Maya explaining some scientific oddity to its smallest possible detail, it was Aki doing the same thing, although maybe not quite as in a detailed fashion as the Lieutenant Commander clearly enjoyed doing. Whatever people thought about the pair, it was undeniable that the Shillian and Human shared a tremendous love for all things pertaining to the field of science.

Such an admiration for the field and the mysteries that it held was not uncommon for anyone who decided to join Starfleet and follow a course of studies in Science. Some might argue that it was even required as the demands of the curriculum were very rigorous and time consuming. Those who only had a passing interest in science rapidly discovered that pursuing that particular course load was not for them, leaving only those truly dedicated to the advancement of science to move ahead.

Still, it was nice to find someone equally devoted to solving the mysteries of the cosmos, whatever they may be. Most members of the scientific community tended to be on a very specific quest, trying to find the elusive answer to a single and all-consuming mystery. Maya on the other hand displayed an unparallel awe for the universe that some who did know truly know the woman would described as unfocused and distraction. As far as the Asian woman was concerned though, this was what made the Shillian to be such a delight to be around.

They could be researching the inner workings of the crafts currently in the BASTET's shuttle bay and still find time to discuss gravitational constants across multi-dimensional landscapes. Whatever the subject turned out to be, the ANUBIS’ CSciO was thrilled to talk about it, and Aki was enjoying the detailed explanations provided by the more experienced science team leader.  This was not to say that occasionally it was nice to have a bit of silence between them, but the Asian woman soon found herself missing hearing about the Shillian's insight into whatever the hot topic of the moment had turned out to be.

"Will you be presenting your findings concerning the dimensional properties that we will be expecting to encounter to Captain Iverson or would you rather I did?" Aki asked, breaking the silence that ruled within the rapidly moving pod.  "I know that she is not your Commanding Officer and that you might not feel quite at ease explaining something like that to a relative stranger, but I would hate for you not to receive the credit that you have worked so hard to earn."

"I do not do what I do to receive any sort of credit or praises," Maya said. "You and I are not that type of scientist. We are driven by the pure and honest quest for answers, the hope of discovering something new, something interesting, and better still something that will be of use to those we work with.  If we were interested in making a name for ourselves, we would not have joined Starfleet and accepted a position on board a starship. We could have worked our way to one of the countless planet-side research facilities and spent our days trying to identify some never before discovered substance that would be named after us. The life of a scientist on board a ship like the ANUBIS or the BASTET is one of long and countless hours of research and work meant only to assist others in whatever way we can."

Aki figured that the only reason why Maya had ended her explanation when she had was because the doors to the turbolift had hissed opened allowing them to set foot onto the bridge.  "I simply did not want you to believe that if I made the presentation it would be so that I could claim your work as mine."

Maya stepped out of the pod and turned to look at Aki who was still inside. "We have not been working together for that long, but I can tell that you are not the type to do as you have just described. As much as the information provided following a thorough scientific evaluation proves useful, it would not bother me who claimed ownership for my work. What is important to me, as I believe it is just as important to you, is being a useful and contributing part of a team, a team that we both consider to be much more than just that. I truly believe that you feel the same way I do. The members of our respective crews are more than friends, they are our family. We just continue to refer to them as a team so that they do not consider us overly sentimental which might lead to them not looking upon us in the way they should."

Aki smiled. "Whatever we do, we do it together as a team for the team."

"Exactly," Maya said returning the Asian woman's smile. "Let us go to this briefing together and give everyone all of the information we have collected thus helping to ensure that the mission is as successful as possible."

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant Misaki 'Aki' Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M17-A030: USS ANUBIS: Lopez: 35013.0755 ("Not Alone")
-=-=-
"Not Alone"
[Previous post: (ANU) "Alone" & (BAS) "Together"]
-=-=-
 
Setting:  USS BASTET, Sickbay -> Corridor -> Turbolift
Stardate: 35013.0755
 
Xana had to leave, not because she wanted to but because she suspected that her presence and input might be required during the mission briefing. The problem was that Adriana's hold on her hand was solid enough to make it clear that the Junior Ambassador did not want to see her mentor go, and after what happened the night before, the azure woman could not bring herself to pull her hand free from the hold of near despair.
 
"Tell you what," the Ambassador said. "I will come back as soon as the briefing is over. Heck, I might even ask to be excused early so that I can be back that much faster. Deal?"  Xana was no stranger to negotiations, but this did not feel like that. Yes, she was trying to barter for her personal release, but the sensation that stirred within the Bolian/Human almost made it feel like she wanted to not be successful.
 
Adriana smiled, weakly but a smile nonetheless. "I have a counter proposition for you."
 
"Who do you think you are trying to alter the terms of an agreement offered to you by a Federation Ambassador!" It was clear that the Xana was teasing, laughter clearly audible in her voice as she tried to sound offended by what had been said to her.
 
"Throwing your position around? I thought you had decided not to do that any more?"
 
Bonviva chuckled for a few seconds before forcing an expression of utter seriousness on her face. "I only throw my position around when it is absolutely necessary.  As my Junior Ambassador you should already know that." Saying this Xana gently pulled Adriana's hand from hers using her free hand. "You need to rest and I need to get to that mission briefing before it starts. It would not look good for an Ambassador to arrive late."
 
"Did you not once tell me that it was never a good plan for an Ambassador to appear too eager and that the best way to avoid this was to arrive fashionably late to any and all meetings, no matter the reason for it or who might be there in attendance?"
 
"I knew that making you my Junior Ambassador would come back to haunt me one day," Xana said with a playful sigh. "Having my own words used against me has to be the worst thing any member of the diplomatic corps can experience.  Fine, what is our counter proposal?"
 
"That we both go to the meeting together," Adriana said without missing a beat. "It would give me the chance to be there instead of here alone, and it would give everyone the opportunity to see that I am doing much better."
 
"Is that all?" Xana teased. "Not much of an argument to sway me from my initial offering."
 
"It would also give me the chance to apologize to everyone for the chaos I was responsible for last night. My being there, at the briefing, would make an apology official and far more meaningful, plus I owe it to everyone. Satella explained to me the state in which she found me in and the and how it created quite a bit of commissions throughout the ship."
 
"Well, her calling for help the way she did kind of rapidly escalated the situation, but I understand what it is you are trying to say." Xana smiled, “Do you need some help getting up?”
 
Xana waited patiently as Adriana slid off the biobed.  The Junior Ambassador/Counselor took several deep breaths before seemingly settling herself and nodding that she was ready.  It was one thing to say she was ready and another to actually be ready.  
 
“Good, we can go,” Xana announced.  
 
Adriana walked slowly out of the door with Xana.  As they moved down the hallway, she felt the guilt rise up in her.  Ever since her recovery, it was as if the Bolian/Human woman had been a flurry of activity.  Adriana, today, did not feel like being a flurry of activity.  “I’m sorry, I’m slowing you down.”
 
Xana rolled her eyes.  “Yes, it’s a race.  We get prizes if we show up early.  If we show up late we need to scrub out the plasma manifolds with a toothbrush.”
 
Adriana frowned at that.  “Is that a thing? Scrubbing plasma manifolds with toothbrushes?”
 
“Do you want to make it a thing? I’m sure Sonja would be agreeable to that or some kind of other manual labor assistance if it would help,” Xana pointed out.  
 
“What if it’s not a thing?” Adriana asked.
 
“Then Sonja might agree just for kicks and giggles, but not if it caused her more work,” the Ambassador said.  As Adriana seemingly slowed down, the Ambassador said, “Come on, we’re moving.”
 
“You don’t need to mother me,” the Junior Ambassador replied.
 
That got Xana to purse her lips in consideration.  “That’s a really interesting comment,” she admitted.  “Do I mother you?”  
 
Adriana just glared at her.  “I didn’t mean--”
 
“No, no, now I’m going to consider this,” Xana said, holding up a hand.
 
“You’re doing this to be--”
 
“Wonderful?”
 
“Not what I was going to say.”
 
“Well that definitely sounds like something one of my children would say,” Xana sighed.  She started humming as she appeared to be in thought.  “Interesting, you’ve talked to 3 out of my 4 children, and you’re about the age of my eldest child, so it’s possible that somewhere along the way that I’ve conflated friendship with maternal instinct.”  Thinking some more on the topic she waved her hand and said, “No.  I reject that thesis.  Nice try though.  Now let’s get going.  You decided you wanted to get to the Bridge and here we are at the turbolift.”
 
The two women waited for the lift and got in when it finally got to them.  “Is this another one of those ‘I’m the Ambassador and so what I say goes’ moments?” Adriana asked.
 
Xana smiled at that.  “You tell me,” she answered.  “Were you acting as a Junior Ambassador when you declared you were going to the Bridge?”
 
Adriana frowned at that.  “I wanted to make amends--”
 
“Over the objections of those who wanted you to rest and get better,” Xana pointed out softly.  Glancing softly she said, “You knew your presence now was required to help move things along.  That while resting might do you some personal good, the greater good would be better served by you coming.  Am I partially right?”
 
“Yes,” Adriana nodded.  
 
Xana nodded.  “So… did you abuse your power to leave Sickbay? Or was it out personal conviction and you used the tools at your disposal,”   When Adriana did not answer the Ambassador continued on, “I believe that all we can do is decide, with what little time we have in this universe, what is right and use what we have to move forward in that, using whatever we can to see that through.”
 
-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi
 
Lieutenant JG Adriana Lopez [Access Character BIO for Adriana Lopez]
Ship's Counselor & Junior Ambassador
USS ANUBIS
 
Sarah Albertini-Bond
USS ANUBIS
M13-B029: USS BASTET: Enel: 35013.0756 ("Roses")
=-=
“Roses”
Previous posts: (ANU) “Not Alone” by Marissa / (BAS) “Together” by Dawn

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35013.0756

They reeked; all the other senior officers crowded together waiting for the Observation Lounge to open.  Zub’s nose, a good half a meter above their hushed conversations, was assailed with body heat and scents, made all the more pungent by the frisson of anticipation spiking each scent more toward acidic or base depending on race.  He didn’t want to be rude and grab his nose.  Well, he did want to grab his nose, smash it shut.  He didn’t.  He inhaled through barely parted lips. The maisma was strong enough to taste.  He put his three-fingered hands in a fig leaf and held his breath.

A furry fist-paw smacked him on the Voth equivalent of a bicep.  “What’s that?”  asked A’Janni, the felinoid Flight Control Officer over the hushed conversations.  

Zub Enel looked down puzzled into a single amused white eye.

A’Janni said up to him.  “You need to let other people get a word in.  Stop dominating the conversation.”

“But I haven’t spoken.”  The keyed-up crowd smell got on his tongue.  He pressed his lips shut.

“Precisely,” said the FCO.  “You have been so serious, even for you.  Is the replicator out of gagh?”

Zub gave a little snort.  He shook his head.

“Use your words, Zub. Is something bothering you?”

Zub’s scales tinted pink. His down fluttered.  “No.  All is well.”  He forced himself to meet the warrior-helmsman’s single eye.  

“You are a lying sack of ….” The hulking cat-man halted and looked around at the other officers.  He realized that whatever was troubling the Voth was probably best not aired out with some many ears present.  He chose to take the Chief of Security off the spit.  “You know, the best time to kill us all is just before a a senior level briefing.”

The scales on Zub’s neck stood.  He’d been so embarrassed by his utter failure at interrogating the two inter-dimensional interlopers that he had redoubled his efforts to think of and prepare for every possible circumstance. Wholesale assassination of everyone on the bridge had occurred to hm, but he had ranked it unlikely.  Still, if A’Janni had thought of it, even as a joke, why couldn’t the guests?

“See?” the furry Caitian rumbled.  “You’re doing it again.”

Zub took a short breath of stinking air.  He narrowed his golden eyes. “Seating is going to be tight in there.  Not a lot of room to move, unless you and I opt to stand by the door. More control of egress and ingress.”

A’Janni’s wet cat scent upped a notch or two.  His eye dilated.  “You kill me when you use those big words.”

Zub smiled.

A’Janni faced the Observation Lounge door more squarely.  “If they kill you first, I will avenge you.  If they kill me first?”  He looked up at the Sec/Tac for an answer.

“I will laugh and laugh,” Zub said.

The usually sour looking cat man smiled.  “There you are!”

=-=
David Michael Inverso

Chief Security and Tactical Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977

“As you walk down the fairway of life you must smell the roses, for you only get to play one round.”  
 - Ben Hogan
M17-A031: USS ANUBIS: Paquette: 35013.0800 ("Not Happy One Bit")
"Not Happy One Bit"
previous posts were (ANU) "Not Alone" / (BAS) "Roses"

=====
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35013.0800  

Sonja was not happy, not happy at all. During the exchange between Ya'Han and Jayson, the redhead engineer had kept a hold on the silver-haired Doctor to make sure she was not going anywhere. Whatever role Satella had played in this, she would be here to see the results first-hand.

The quarrelling couple was not that far, but they kept their voices down making it impossible for anyone else to hear what was being said. All that Sonja could do was to gage the situation according to the colour of Ya'Han's hair, and that was enough for the engineer to know that things were not going well, not well at all.

The fact that her hair had turned pitch black the moment she went to speak to him indicated that Ya'Han was on the defensive, downplaying her personal worth and opinions. If Sonja had not been holding Satella to make sure she did not interfere, it would have been the redhead herself who would have rushed in. At least that way one of them would be displaying the fiery red locks of barely-contained rage.

When Sonja noticed a few streaks of green appearing in Ya'Han's hair, the engineer's anger immediately went into overdrive. Whatever dislike the CEO held for the OPS officer converted into full hatred for what he had done to the Chief of Security. The Nylaan was a fearless warrior, a trait that she had displayed more than once during their stay on that dark and gloomy space station from another dimension. So to see her willingly become so desperately submissive just made Sonja see red.

It took all of her will power for Sonja not to strike out at Jayson as he walked by heading to the conference room.  The CEO wanted to follow him, force him in a corner and make him became one with the nearest bulkhead, but there was something more urgent to take care of -- Ya'Han.  Letting go of the silver-haired Doctor, the redhead Engineer rushed to her friend's side.

"Stop that!" Sonja said, taking her friend somewhat by surprise as that was not what Ya'Han had expected to hear.

"Stop what?" Ya'Han sheepishly asked.

"That!" The redhead said flicking one of the green strands of hair to make it fall in view of the woman to which it was attached to.

A heartbeat or so later, all of Ya'Han's hair was back to being a single colour. Sonja would have preferred that it was something other than black, but it would have to do for now.  "I just wanted him to know..."

"Know what?" Sonja interrupted. "That you are a weak and submissive woman? That you would sacrifice all that you are, all that you have become because of him? If so, why did you even bother to run away from your home? If that is the way you truly feel about yourself, you should have stayed and mary that Ferengi troll 'worthlax'."

"Ardax," Ya'Han corrected. "His name was Ardrax... Daimon Ardax, but you have made your point."

"Have I? Really? Somehow I don't think so," the engineer snarled as she shot a glare at her friend's dark, uni-coloured hair.

Again it only took a fraction of a second, but the moment Ya'Han started concentrating on the colour of her hair, it changed into the black and red mix that had become her usual. Sonja would have preferred to see her friend go full combat red, but this was certainly better than the 'I could not care less' black she had on before.

"See, we are not the only ones who are going to be late," Adriana said as she and Xana stepped out of the turbolift.

"ADRIANA!" Ya'Han and Sonja exclaimed as one, forgetting the unpleasantness of the recent events. "What are you doing out of Sickbay?" The two women took a moment to look at each other out of sheer amusement at the fact that they were speaking in perfect unison.

"She wanted to be part of the briefing," Xana sighed.

"Well, isn't that great," Sonja continued suddenly realizing that Ya'Han was no longer saying things at the same time, in fact, she was not saying anything anymore.  Looking at her friend with a hint of disappointment, the redhead engineer continued. "We better get in there. We can take care of the rest after."

"The rest?" Adriana asked.

"Might need your help with that," the redhead engineer said.

"My help? As a Junior Ambassador or a Ship's Counsellor?"

"Counsellor I'm afraid."

"My office might have changed, but at least my hours are still the same. Come and see me in Sickbay whenever you are up for it."

Xana fired a glare at Adriana. Here she was making appointments when she was supposed to be resting.

=====
Lorraine Paquette

Lt Commander Sonja Paquette [Access Character BIO for Sonja Paquette]
Chief Engineering Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC 18501
M17-A032: USS ANUBIS: Morningstar-Iverson: 35013.0810 ("Hop, Skip and a Jump")
##########
"Hop, Skip and a Jump"
Previous posts (ANU) "Not Happy One Bit" / (BAS) "Roses"
##########

"Choice is an illusion, created between those with power, and those without."
- The Merovingian

=====
Setting: USS BASTET, Guest Quarters (Fiona's)
Stardate: 35013.0805

She had been patient but no more. With her left hand, the flowing blonde-hair woman made a tight fist before slapping her forearm several times. After a few seconds of this, a small control panel-like layout formed on her skin as if being pushed from beneath.  The expression on the woman's face indicated that whatever this was, it was painful, but clearly, she had no other choice. Why else submit herself to such pain?

"Time to get things moving," the woman mumbled as she typed something on her arm before the whole structure vanished, sinking back into her body.

=====
Setting:  USS BASTET, Deck 12, Main Engineering
Stardate: 35013.0810

Everyone was finally in. To see Ambassador Boniva come in a few minutes late was not that much of a surprise as the Bolian/Human seemed to rarely be on time for any meeting. What did surprise the Native American, along with most of the ANUBIS' senior officers, was that Xana had not been alone, Adriana had walked in with her.  The unexpected presence of the Counselor/Junior Ambassador triggered a wave of queries about how she was doing which ended with an apology from the woman herself.  With that out of the way, the mission briefing could begin.

There were just too many people for everyone to sit, so those who felt most at ease standing did so. It was not surprising to find the Voth Chief of Security and Caitian Flight Control Officer both electing to stand at the back of the room. Likewise, finding Commander Shar'El and Lieutenant Gemma keeping an eye on the gathered group from different sides of the room was standard behaviour for an Intel Operative.

As for the Native American, he stood in the far corner behind the BASTET's Captain.  As a guest of Captain Iverson, Morningstar understood and accepted that this was not his meeting to give, and truth be told he preferred it that way. If he was to speak to the large gathering of officers, it was very likely that more than one of them would pick up on his apprehension for what needed to be done.  Selene had presented a powerful argument that left Erik with little choice, but that did not mean he liked it. To see Adriana sitting at the table with the others though did help alleviate some of his earlier concerns.

"By now I am sure you all know about the Confederacy," Captain Iverson started with, opting to dive right into the heart of the matter. "According to the Intel we have been given, they are planning on sending an infiltration team from their dimension to ours."

"Couldn't we just redirect them to the Lokustaar home dimension?" Sonja suggested, the Chief Engineering Officer sounding a great deal more irritated than might have been considered normal for her. "That would not only solve our Confederacy problem but it would keep those walking nightmares busy for a little while longer, that way they can't plan on getting back at us."

"Unfortunately, it is not that easy," Lieutenant Mitshiba offered.

"Nothing is ever that easy," Satella said while shooting a covert glance at Jayson who was sitting on the opposite side of the table.

"Are you not going to ask if we have considered the possibility of a diplomatic resolution to this matter?" Commander Valentine asked of the azure woman, the First Officer of the BASTET certain that the Ambassador would opt for a less militaristic approach to this or any other situation.

The Bolian/Human Ambassador grinned ever so slightly as she met the gaze of the ANUBIS' Captain before turning her full attention to the Commander. "I am sure that Captain Morningstar would be happy to say that diplomacy is what I do, most of the time, but this time is not one of those times. Remember, I was there on that station and experienced their way of acting. Even if we did manage to get them to sit and listen, I strongly believe that they would continue to move forward with their plan, using our meeting as a distraction. I, therefore, support a more direct approach. If the Confederacy does decide they want to talk, it will be after we have shown them that this dimension will not just stand by and let itself invaded."

Adriana said nothing. The Junior Ambassador simply looked at the woman sitting next to her, surprised and grateful. There was no way to be certain as to why Xana so adamantly supported a course of action that went against her deepest beliefs, but the Counselor silently suspected that what had happened to her back on the space station, as well as on the BASTET, had played a major role in her decision.

"I agree," Ya'Han offered. "A direct approach is the only thing those people will understand." Although the ANUBIS' Chief of Security had voiced her support for the stated course of action, she had done so with a great deal less conviction that the Native American had grown to expect from the woman. Obviously, something was bothering her, but now was not the time to investigate the matter.

"Lieutenant Commander Maya, Lieutenant Mitshiba, does our resident science team have anything to add?" Captain Iverson asked. "I know that the two of you have been working long and hard to try and figure out as much as possible about this new dimension. Any ideas of what we might expect to run into?"

Misaki looked at Maya who simply nodded her head as she quietly said: "go ahead".

Mitshiba wanted to make sure that it was okay for her to give the report. The Shillian had made this quite clear during their journey to the bridge that this would not be a problem but still, the Asian scientist wanted to be beyond certain. "We were unable to identify anything odd or particular from the ships currently in our shuttle bay. Both vessels show components that originated from various and distant worlds only to be thrown together, the most puzzling part is that the whole mess appears to be functioning through sheer will power, most of the systems being incompatible. We did detect a slight dimensional vibration in the molecular structure of the two ships, the same vibration found by Doctor Andersson and Bruxa in the cellular makeup of the woman resembling you Captain, but that was pretty much it. Based on the gathered data, we believe that the dimension will not have any negative impact on our technology."

"That's good news," the Caitian FCO noted, recalling the transporter issues they had to deal with during their mission to the dimension of the PA-HA-SA.

"All we have to do is to get there, stop the Confederacy and come back," Doctor Andersson said giving Nicole's hand which she was holding a gentle squeeze.

"Should not be a problem," the joint Trill added. "I do not believe we have never had so much talent, varied skills, and expertise on a single mission before today. As long as we keep an eye out for one another, we should all come back safe and sound." Dima gave Adriana a quick look, hoping that they would all return as she had said without anyone else having to endure what the Counselor/Junior Ambassador had lived through.

"Speaking of keeping an eye on others," Ensign Enel chimed in. "What about our two guests? I would feel a lot better if we had them in the brig instead of in quarters. As tight as security might be around them, they have access to a great deal more than they would have if they were behind a force field."

"Both were welcomed on the BASTET as 'guests'," Stark voiced. "We may not trust them, but we have to consider that they might be able to help us in some way."

Selene glanced over her shoulder to Erik who nodded his head in agreement. Both Captains had learned through experience that the old axiom was true -- keep your enemies close and your friends even closer. "We will see how to best handle our guests once we have arrived at our destination. Man your stations, we will engage the D-Drive as soon as we are ready.

=====
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35013.0835

Once everyone was out of the Observation Lounge, the crew began to ready the ship for its journey through the fabric of space itself. Everything seemed to be going according to plan until a strange shimmering effect was seen on the main view screen.

"Have we engaged the D-Drive?" Commander Valentine inquired, the view appearing oddly familiar.

"Negative Commander," Gemma reported from the back of the bridge. "Engineering is still on stand-by to engage the dimensional jump drive. Whatever is happening out there is not of our making."

=====
Setting: SPACE
Stardate: 35013.0836

Under the protection, its dimensional and temporal drives the USS BASTET could not be seen or detected by conventional means, unfortunately, this did little protect it from whatever energy field had suddenly surrounded it.

If anyone had been looking in that exact location where the invisible vessel stood, they would have seen nothing more than what appeared to be a strange spatial anomaly appear out of nowhere only to disappear just as mysteriously leaving no traces that it or anything else had been there.

=====
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35013.0840

The bridge was bathed in the red hue of the alert condition lights until finally, the emergency illumination came online.

=/\= Whatever you people did up there blew out half the frelling relays down here. There is no way we can make a dimensional jump now, =/\= Sonja reported from the BASTET's Main Engineering.

"All stations report, we need to figure out what happened. Ensign Enel, were we attacked? Lieutenant Mitshiba, was this some sort of spatial anomaly that our sensors failed to detect? Lieutenant Stark, make sure that life support systems are working on all decks, and can someone get the main view screen operational again."

It did not take long for all eyes to turn to the forward screen once it turned back on causing a hush to spread through the command deck.  A large almost solid black structure hung in the emptiness of space in front of them, something that was not there before.

"Where did that thing come from?" A'Janni gasped as he looked at the imposing structure. "That thing is *huge*."

Scanning the people who had remained on the bridge, Erik noticed that both the Ambassador and Junior Ambassador appeared uncharacteristically shocked.  "Captain Morningstar," the Nylaan Chief of Security said as she stood next to her Voth counterpart from the BASTET. "It didn't come here, we went to it. That thing is known as SPACE STATION NOWHERE."

"How did we get here if the BASTET did not engage its jump drive?" Shar'El demanded as she tried to make sense of what was happening.

"Who cares." The statement originated from the back of the bridge and instantly drew the attention of those present to it. Where Lieutenant Gemma had been mere seconds ago, another woman stood in her place. The way her silver-white hair went in all direction reflected an attitude that the woman quickly confirmed with her next words. "Yo, you, the furball sitting at the front, take us in!"

"Excuse me?" A'Janni gasped.

"I believe it would be best if you came with me," Enel said trying to take hold of the woman's arm. Even though he had never seen this woman before he knew that this was another of Gemma's personality and since he knew nothing of her, he thought it best to avoid any sort of conflict by removing her from the bridge.

"Take your stinking paws off me you damn dirty reptile!" The woman snapped as she pulled her arm away. "Listen to me you over-grown walking scale factory. You would make a pretty nice pair of boots and matching purse," she turned back to look at the Caitian before adding, "You, I will turn into a fur coat that will go well with those boots and purse, so unless you want to end up that way, I suggest you do as I say. Take us there!"

"Why?" Shar'El questioned, the First Officer of the ANUBIS appearing more confused than anyone else on the bridge.

"Because my dear," she said in a condescending tone as she rose a single finger to point with commanding authority to the image of the space station displayed on the large forward screen, "that's my home!"

--==(/\)==--
Francois Charette

Commanding Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC 18501

AND

Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA

Also
 
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) 
M13-B030: USS BASTET: Dima-Bonviva: 35013.0900 ("Space Full of Memories")
“Space Full of Memories”
[Previous Posts: (ANU) "Hop, Skip and a Jump" (BAS) "Roses"]

=/\=

"The cosmos is within us. We are made of star-stuff. We are a way for the universe to know itself."
-Carl Sagan


=/\=

Setting: USS BASTET, approaching EAGLE-5 (Winnebago with Wings)
Stardate: 35013.0900


"If I had wanted a job putting out little fires everywhere, I would have become an Engineer," Nicole Dima said under her breath, but still with a pleasant conviction, as she walked toward the location of the odd vessel that had dubiously ‘rescued’ Eric’s missing crew. She was absolutely certain she did not envy Sonja in the slightest as she dealt with the fried circuitry as a result of their instant ‘jump’ to the NOWHERE station. But, as the brunette was now juggling the mental health concerns of two senior staffs at the same time, she was definitely edging closer to that frantic feeling.

It had come to her attention that Ambassador Bonviva was not staying in her temporary quarters with Adriana. She had chosen instead to camp out in the less than stellar accommodations aboard Krokax’s ship. At first, Nic thought this might have to do with the modest nature of the guest quarters, but since Maya and Aki had both confirmed the EAGLE-5 was far less comfortable than their inviting but somewhat spartan option. Another assumption was that the Ambassador might not get along with the other Counselor, or have some sort of beef with her. But that theory had been quickly dispelled during Ms. Bonviva's speech to Adriana in the Infirmary, as well as the azure woman's obvious support of her Junior Ambassador at the mission briefing.

That led the joined Trill to a question. If Adriana wasn’t the problem, what was? Nicole reasoned that there was only one way to find out. She gingerly tested the door to find it locked tight. Fine. She could do this the hard way.

=/\= Ambassador, are you alright? =/\=

Xana wiped her mouth and looked down at the puppy who was wagging his tail.  “You ratted me out, didn’t you?”  When D’Artagnan did not answer (obviously), the Bolian/Human woman sighed and looked around for something to rinse out her mouth.  Finding some stale rations and a bottle of water, she popped that into her mouth and yelled back.  “I’m just peachy.”

=/\= I’d feel better if I could see you,=/\= came back the voice.

“No one ever feels better after having seen me,” Xana reassured the voice.  Sighing the Bolian/Human woman looked back down at the dog.  “She’s probably an eager officer.  I have to remember I used to be that once.  Ugh.”    Walking over, Xana popped open the EAGLE-5’s door and saw the BASTET’s Counselor.  “I am well, Ensign Dima.”

“You don’t seem well,” Nicole Dima replied, curiously trying to look inside.

“Alright fine,” Xana replied back, “I am not well but clearly there are people here on this ship who need your help more than I do.”

The Trill seemed bemused at that.  “I can decide that.”  Leaning against the door she said, “I realize you want your space--”

Nicole Dima did not mean it, and under other circumstances her words would just be just that, harmless words floating into the ether.  But when she said “I realize you want your space” what the azure woman heard was another person, in another time saying “I asked for some space...Stop trying to order the universe, and everyone in it, around…”

Xana swayed and sat down on a nearby chair.  Swallowing the uncomfortable lump in her throat she was so lost in her own thoughts that she was unaware of her surroundings until she felt Nicole’s hand on her knee and D’Artagnan licking her hand.  “Are you sure you’re okay?” Nicole asked quietly.

“I’m not,” the Bolian/Human woman admitted.  Looking up she said, “We’re in a mirror universe, and I’ve met my mirror.”  Closing her eyes she took a deep breath before saying, “On the surface she and I are so different.  She’s a Warrior.  Clearly I am not.  She has…the support structure I long ago lost.”

“You envy her,” Nicole said softly.  It wasn’t a question, but a statement.  The longing was clear in the Italian-accented voice flowing from the Ambassador.

Xana opened up her violet eyes and looked up to the ceiling of the EAGLE-5, tears pooling in her eyes but never leaking out.  “I would except...she’s dying.  And she doesn’t have the one person she wants with her.  And I….I know what that’s like.  So no, Ensign Dima, I don’t envy my mirror.  My heart aches for her, even though I know she hates me with every ounce of her being.”

Nicole marveled that in the midst of this trying experience, and the obvious pain she was in, that the Ambassador could still present herself so diplomatically. “I guess in any universe, in any lifetime, there appear to be two certainties.”

“Death and taxes?”

Dima smiled a little. “I was thinking of mistakes and fate. They are always unwelcome guests, but we have yet to find a universe that doesn’t have both.”

Xana raised an eyebrow. “And exactly *how* many universes have you been to?”

“No, don’t misunderstand, I’m no expert. Only a few. I’m still hoping we stumble on the one where everyone lives in peace and harmony and isn’t out to bring chaos and destruction to our little piece of the galaxy.”

“Come on. Where would be the adventure in that?”

The Counselor thought of ELYSIA. The planet had been a natural paradise, taking care of the BASTET crew’s every need, but it had only taken a couple of months of tranquility for them to grow restless and seeking the lives they once led. “You’re right,” Nicole admitted.

"That's the thing about fate- none of us have a choice with that. But I owned up to my mistakes a long time ago. I'd rather have mine than someone else's. Even if that someone else is another version of myself." Xana was still on the verge of tears, but something underneath the surface had shifted back in the direction of control. “So, you understand this isn’t something I want to burden Adriana with right now. I think it’s best that I remain here for now.”

“But everyone should have a place to be safe, even Ambassadors. And this-” Nic replied as she gestured to the dim interior of the small vessel, “is not something I would expect anyone to feel secure in. I’ve seen better suites in the VALLA ROYALE’s red light district.”

Xana crossed her arms, her maternal instincts still in full force. She thought about asking which one of Dima’s former hosts had been to VALLA ROYALE, but decided that was a question for another time. “Don’t forget Junior Ambassadors.” D’Artagnan wagged his tail in agreement.

“Okay, no Ambassador left behind- I get it,” Nicole said as she thought. After a pause, she nodded to herself. “There’s only one way to fix this.”

Xana cupped the puppy’s adorable face in her hands. “And that would be?”

“It’s simple- You can stay in my quarters.”

“I wouldn’t want to impose.”

“Nonsense. You’re a guest. It’s impossible for a guest to impose.”

“Obviously you’ve never been to ANDOR during the Spring Water Festival,” Xana replied, nonplussed.

Nicole continued to state her case. “Besides, I spend a great deal of time in Sickbay, as well as Sofia’s quarters some nights.  You probably won’t notice when I’m there,” she said before she realized what she was admitting and blushed.

Xana recognized the look of someone in love. Just because it had been a while didn’t mean she was immune to it. In fact, it brought back pleasant memories which were definitely needed at the moment.  “Have you ever been married, Counselor?”

“Me? No. But Dima has been…” the young woman thought, “Six times altogether. And please, call me Nicole, or Nic.”

"And how many hosts has Dima had?"

"Four before me."

The Bolian/Human woman began to do the math. “That sounds like the potential for a whole lot o’drama.”

“Thankfully, they weren’t simultaneous. You?”

Xana brushed the puppy hair off of her knees and stood up. “Three. And two of them *were* simultaneous, so there’s that.”

“Don’t you mean three... so far?” Nicole teased.

“No,” Xana answered without hesitation. “I know a good negotiator never eliminates an option in haste, but I think it’s pretty safe to say I’ve sworn off marriage.” The Ambassador looked to the open door of the Winnebago-with-wings. “Shall we go?”

Nic smiled, much bigger this time. “You’re coming? Was it my powers of persuasion that helped you decide?” They made their way into the more brightly lit cargo bay.

“Not exactly. Let’s just say you remind me of someone,” the taller woman mused.

=/\=
A Joint Post by

Sarah Albertini-Bond
USS ANUBIS

And

Dr. Tulla Keiku, Lieutenant
aCMO
USS PHOENIX

And

Cns
USS BASTET
M17-A033: USS ANUBIS: Shar'El: 35013.0900 ("Intel Operative's Log")
=-=
"Intel Operative's Log"
[the previous posts were (ANU) "Hop, Skip and a Jump" by Francois & Jessica / (BAS) "Space Full of Memories" by Susan & Sarah]
=-=

Setting: USS BASTET, Observation lounge
Stardate: 35013.0900

"Computer, stand-by to start recording a personal log using Omega-9 Black Intel clearance," The ILO instructed after walking into the Observation Lounge in order to be alone. With everyone else on the bridge busy dealing with the latest arrival, this was the best opportunity to do so, even if Shar'El would have preferred to stay and observe.

=/\= Standing by, =/\= the computer replied in its usual unemotional and neutral tone.

"Begin recording," the ExO / ILO said, waiting to the audio indicator to be herd before she began her log. "The BASTET has arrived at its intended destination, although not the way that Captain Iverson would have preferred I am sure. Somehow, someone brought the ship to the target location, but that is not the worst of it.  It is evident that something is interfering with the nanite inhibitor which has led to Miss Abrasivnyy to make a less than welcomed entrance. I fear that there will be no other choice but to delay the next phase of Project GAMMA.  It is my hope to regain control of the situation as quickly as possible. Failure to do so will leave me with no choice but to terminate the experiment. End of log."

Shar'El let out a long deep breath as she looked out the nearest window to study the stars of this other dimension. This would be the first time she would see them with her own eyes, but their familiarity did nothing to diminish the exhilaration she felt in looking at them. Stopping the Confederacy would be a challenge, followed closely by them returning home without any major incident. Of course, the odds of this happening had greatly been reduced thank to the arrival of Miss Abrasivnyy.

"Computer, use the BASTET's trans-dimensional communication array and transmit my recording log to NEW ALEXANDRIA, care of Admiral Koniki. Make sure that the transmission is identified as being an Omega-9 Black Intel priority.  We would not want anyone else but the Admiral to see this."

=/\= Accessing dimensional communications array, =/\= the computer reported. =/\= Log has been transmitted. =/\=

"Good," Shar'El sighed. "One last thing. Computer delete all primary and back-up records of the log that was just recorded and its transmission, also, delete all internal senor records of my having been in this room since my last walk-in. There are to be no records of this having ever happened."

=/\= Unable to comply, =/\= the computer coldly stated. =/\= The authorizations of the Captain as well as that of the First Officer are... =/\=

The ExO / ILO interrupted knowing very well what would be said and what she needed to do in response. "Computer... this is an Intel Operative override clearance Omega-9. Recognize Shar'El, Lieutenant Commander, USS ANUBIS."

The computer took a couple of seconds to process the last given command. =/\= Voice identification confirmed. Lieutenant Commander Shar'El, please provide authorization code. =/\=

The raven-haired woman took a moment to once again look out the window and at the starts beyond as she took in a slow, controlled breath. "Authorization code: Sierra-Hotel-Alpha-Romeo-Echo-Lima-zero-zero-one-black."

An unusual sequence of chimes and beeps followed indicating that the computer was indeed process the request, something that was evidently not part of the normal proceedings of the ship. =/\= Requested action has been completed. =/\=

She truly hated to do this. Shar'El would have much preferred to tell the truth to Erik and even inform Captain Iverson and Commander Valentine of what the Admiral had planned, but she could not. Koniki was a master at creating plans within plans, each level having security protocols in place to ensure that everything went according to what he wanted to happen.  For the time being, the ExO / ILO had to act the way she did for everyone's sake. The advantage of working on an Intel ship such as the ANUBIS or the BASTET, operating under the banner of NEW ALEXANDRIA was that they worked well outside of the normal rules set by Starfleet. The disadvantage of operating under that same banner was that Admiral Koniki had all of the freedom he needed and therefore did not have to abide by any of the code of conduct that ensured some level of accountability in the absence of rules.

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35013.0910

Shar'El walked back onto the bridge, relieved to see that the commotion created by Gemma's latest personality had been more than sufficient to hide the fact that the ExO / ILO had not been around for the last few minutes.

"She is quite a piece of work that one," the FCO commented.

"I would like for someone to explain what just happened," Stark demanded, the temporary OPS Officer of the BASTET not having had any prior knowledge as to Lieutenant Gemma's rather unorthodox ability to turn into someone else.

No one seemed ready or willing to explain what had happened, and when Jayson looked in Shar'El's direction, the raven hared woman simply shrugged in a display of ignorance. Of course, the gesture was nothing more than an act as the ExO / ILO knew a great deal about the woman and her multiple personalities. In fact, the raven-haired woman suspected that she knew more about the BASTET's ILO than anyone else, including Admiral Koniki himself.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS

Chief Medical Officer
USS BASTET
M13-B031: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: 35013.0925 ("Miss Congeniality... NOT")
"Miss Congeniality... NOT"
Previous posts: (ANU) "Intel Operative's Log" & (BAS) "Intel Operative's Log"

///^\\\  
Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 35013.0925

In the absence of a Brig on the BASTET, bringing the red-faced raging woman to Sickbay and locking her behind a level 10 medical force field was the only way to protect everyone. Judging by the state of the area on the other side of the energy barrier, the decision to do this had not been one second too early. Anything that could be picked up and thrown had been sent against the force field creating a rather unsightly mess.

"Listen you little squinty-eyed excused for a lackey," the woman said at the Asian woman standing on the other side of the force field. Nothing that had been said or done had diverted her away from her seemingly endless rage-fueled tirade. "Do not think for a second that because you have one and a half of those shinny little pips on that tight collar of yours that it makes you someone. You are nothing, and you will be made to feel like less if you do not let me go and take me home!"

"Is there anything we can do for her?" Aki asked, the CSciO was visibly upset by the way this new personality of the ILO was acting.  "Can you change her back to Gemma, Wimda or any of the others whom we have been able to work with in the past?"

Doctor Andersson shrugged her shoulder. "I would love to, but we have no idea how her transformations truly happen. You and I both know that it is the nanites in her body that allow her to change appearance, but that's about it.  Nicole's theory is that the nanites in her brain respond to the same stimuli as the rest in her body, but instead of changing her physical appearance, they access different personalities and trigger a different set of memories. If it was just for what our instruments have told us about her thus far, we would not even know that much. Gemma is a mystery on her own, and that's before you start taking into account any of her other personalities."

"This Miss Abrasivnyy is charming enough to almost make us want to deal with Anya instead," Commander Valentine said while shaking her head.  "I am still curious as to why she keeps referring to that space station as her 'home'."

"The answer to that particular question is relatively easily to extrapolate," Lieutenant Commander Maya said as she walked closer to the force field. The Shillian Scientist had followed the others here if for no other reason that there was a new mystery to solve in the form of Miss Abrasivnyy. "I took the liberty of accessing the Lieutenant's service record, at least what little is available given her position as the ILO for this vessel. Lt. Gemma was a solo operative before joining the crew of the BASTET, it is therefore a logical assumption that this personality of hers somehow came to this dimension and lived on this station long enough to make it feel like home for her. Most Humanoids link the term 'home' to a familiar location which possesses some sort of emotional link, be it positive or negative.  The alternative is that the memories of someone else have been implanted into her mind, thus making her believe that the space station we are near to is 'her' home.  There is obviously no way for us to know the details of what happened, but based on what we have observed, we cannot deny the emotional link this woman has with that particular location."

Aki smiled as she looked at the Shillian who did not appear in the least by phased by what had happened to the ILO of the BASTET. The CSciO of the ANUBIS was a true scientist, not wasting any time questioning the reasons why Gemma had transformed but instead focusing on the more urgent needs of understanding the reasoning behind the argumentative raging beast behind the force field. Mitshiba would have to provide some sort of explanation, but is was clear to see that it would not be required at this moment.

"Wow," the wild white-haired Abrasivnyy gasped in horrified shock. "How do you or anyone else near you get *anything* done with you babbling like a elderly mad woman? I know a couple of statues that would have long ago shattered themselves into a million pieces to avoid listening to your pointless ramblings for one extra second."

Ignoring the latest rant of the captive woman, Aki turned to the other officers gathered in Sickbay. "What do we do?"

"*We*," Commander Valentine began, "need to work out a plan of action against the Confederacy. We are where we needed to be even if how we ended up here is still a mystery. As far as Miss Abrasivnyy is concerned," the First Officer said pointing to the not-so-improved ILO, "it will be up to the Captain to decide.  Let's go."

"DON'T YOU DARE LEAVE ME ALONE LIKE THIS YOU BRAINLESS PUPPETS. GET BACK HERE THIS INSTANT!"

It pained Aki to see and hear Gemma like this but there was nothing any of them could do for the time being. Maybe once Abrasivnyy calmed down, if that ever happen, they might be able to talk to her and get some sort of clue as to what they would be able to do to help.

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant Misaki 'Aki' Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M13-B032: USS BASTET: Andersson-Bruxa: 35013.0935 ("Preparations")
=-=
"Medical Debate"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Intel Operative's Log" by Tiffany / (BAS) "Miss Congeniality... NOT" by Dawn]
=-=
 
Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 35013.0935

As long as no one was in her field of vision, Abrasivnyy seemed content to mumble to herself as she kicked or smashed anything that she walked in range of.  Every now and then she would unleash a long string of insults directed at people that were no longer there, but those never seemed to last very long. Not having an audience to witness her quick wit clearly had taken the wind out of her sails.

"So," Satella whispered, risking a look around the medical blind the two CMOs were hiding behind. "This is *normal* for your ILO?"

"Normal... well, yes and no, sort of," Sofia ventured hesitantly. "Gemma is able to change her appearance, this depending on her mood and state of mind."

"Like Ya'Han and her hair," Dr. Bruxa noted with disdain. Right now, Satella did not particularly enjoy thinking about the Nylaan. There was no way she could ever challenge her physically, but there were times when the CMO wished she could. If only to make her realize how much she had hurt the man she claimed to love.

"Not really," Dr. Andersson said. "Not unless your Chief of Security gets a brand-new personality to go along with each different color she displays. As I understand it, the color of Ya'Han's hair changes according to the cast she is performing the duties of.  Even if you knew nothing of her, as long as you knew what color identifies what cast, you would know what she is up to. Gemma's appearance, on the other hand, changes according to *who she is*, usually this depends on the situation, but it does not have to. If we need an engineer, Gabrielle shows up. If you need a scientist, Wimda appears.  We are not entirely certain that Gemma is fully able to control those changes. Like when Ema pays us a visit, which leaves us to guess who we are dealing with and why.  Since I have witnessed your Chief of Security just close her eyes and change her hair, it appears that she controls this ability far more than Gemma controls hers."

"So those physical changes and the new personalities that are associated to them are a physical representation of a psychological break?" Satella theorized. "She suffers from multiple personality disorder? An *extreme* case where each personality has its own appearance?"

"That's pretty much it in a nutshell," Sofia admitted. "Nic has been trying to help Gemma. Well, actually, I think it would be more accurate for me to say that she has been trying to understand. We know that there are numerous nanites running throughout her body and that they are likely responsible for the physical changes we see. The problem is that those same nanites make it impossible for our scanners to get any sort of actual reading from her. Our instruments pick up what she wants us to see, which is always a perfectly healthy woman from whatever race her current personal belongs to."

"Wait, what?" Dr. Bruxa looked like she was about to fall backwards. "She can alter her appearance to that extent?"

"Let me see if I can remember them all without looking at her file," Andersson said challenging herself to the task. "Wimda is an Uxali; Ema is an Oltharian; Gwenvel is an El'Aurian. She can also be of different nationality within a single species, Anya Petrov is Russian, accent and all while Gabrielle Wolf is as German as it gets. I know I am missing a lot of the personalities, but you get the picture, each is unique. There are just too many for anyone to keep track of them all. Well, that not true, I am sure that Nicole has managed to keep all of the personalities straight in her mind. Let's face it, dealing with multiple people in a single head is kind of her thing being a joint Trill and all."

"So, each personality possesses its own set of likes and dislikes?" Satella asked, still trying to make sense of the whole mess of a thing.

"Likes, dislikes, tastes, skills, even memories," Sofia clarified. "Discovering a new personality of Gemma's is like meeting someone completely new. Yes, they all share several physical similarities, but as individuals, they are all as different from each other as can be."

"That is... wow," Dr. Bruxa said, unable to properly voice how she felt. "I will say this, I will never complain about Lt. Cmdr. Shar'El. I always thought that as an ILO she was a little weird. Now I see that on a scale of weird, she barely registers, not when compared to Gemma."

"She does keep things interesting," Sofia said while grinning. "I can certainly see how that particular ability was useful in her days as a deep undercover operative."

"She told you about that?"Satella gasped. "Shar'El never says anything about anything she has ever done as an ILO before joining the ANUBIS."

"Gemma has not said anything, but you have to admit that the ability to become someone completely different would have its advantages," Andersson offered. After saying this, the two Doctors became silent as they overheard what sounded like two people talking.  Satella and Sofia dared to sneak a peek around the medical blind once again.  Both were stunned to see that Abrasivnyy was actually speaking to someone and that this someone was none other than the BASTET's imposing reptilian Chief of Security.

The two CMOs looked at one another questioning in silence how he had managed to walk in without either one of them noticing or how he had managed to remain out of sight until now. Either way, the next question was how the conversation would unfold and if the medical force field would actually hold should things turn ugly.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Chief Medical Officer
USS BASTET

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS

Rachel Jackie Johnson

Lieutenant JG Satella Bruxa [Access Character BIO for Satella Bruxa]
Chief Medical Officer
USS ANUBIS

[Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint. - Mark Twain]
M13-B033: USS BASTET: Enel: 35013.0939 ("Do I bug you?")
=-=
“Do I Bug You?”
[the previous post was (ANU) "Intel Operative's Log" by Tiffany / (BAS) “Medical Debate” by Rachel]
=-=
 
Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 35013.0939

Zub had followed Commander Valentine out of Sickbay while the white-haired version of Gemma shrieked after them, “GET BACK HERE THIS INSTANT!”

The only reply had been the sound of the Sickbay door closing.

He decided to see if he could get Gemma to reassert herself. He reentered Sickbay. He stepped up close enough to the force field to feel the jazz of a pulsating electric field. 

Abrasivnyy stood in the center of her containment area with clenched fists and her purple lips pulled back to show perfectly aligned teeth. She glared into his face. Though highly distorted by anger, hers had Gemma’s high symmetry, albeit suffused with utter malice. "Listen tall, dark and scaly, I never forget a face, but in your case, I am more than willing to make an exception."

He asked, “Gemma? Are you alright?”

"Let me guess, you hatched out of an egg and the moment your mother saw you she wanted to glue the pieces back together.” The woman's anger was tangible and exerted so much force on her that it pushed Abrasivnyy to have what seemed to be a completely different conversation to what the Voth on the other side of the force field was trying to have with her.

Zub felt dismayed about making any inroads back to Gemma. “None of us have done anything to you to warrant such rudeness.  We are more apt to listen if you calm yourself.”

A purple lip curled into a high sneer. “Wow, you must be one of the really bright ones on this ship. Bright enough that I suspect that if your brain exploded with a thousand times you IQ, it would still not be enough to ruffle my hair." She was now standing as close to the force field as she dared to, not at all intimidated by the creature standing on the other easily towering well over her.

Zub felt his scales flush in spite of his desire to remain cool to the woman’s verbal abuse. It seemed everything he said just triggered more, like she was making them up while he was thinking what to say next.  

She went slightly hipshot. "If those beady eyes of yours are actually able to see anything, then you should have noticed that I'm a woman, and as such I am a hundred times better than you or any other man in this dimension or any other. Get used to it." The unexpected display of arrogance bordering on narcissism of the woman now walking away from the force field left Enel to wonder what the woman was trying so hard to hide under all that bravado.

He went back to trying to disrupt this personality.  “Do you know anyone named Gemma?  Have you met her?”

“Look, you walking couch cover, I’ve already told you my name and what I want. Are you truly that stupid?” She raised a hand. “No, wait, you *are* that stupid. When I get home you are going to wish to whatever god you worship — or *should* have worshiped — that you had obeyed me. I will have you cut into 10 thousand headbands! Alive!”

He tried a different tact. “You want to go home. How is it that you are here instead of there?”

For a moment the white-haired, purple-lipped woman’s face went slack. The anger returned doubled. “YOU KIDNAPPED ME!”

Zub shook his head in disbelief. It occurred to him that this version of Gemma was as ignorant of Gemma’s existence as Gemma likely was of this personality. He hid his frustration behind a calm tone, “You have not been kidnapped.”

“HOW WOULD *YOU* KNOW?! MORON!”

She rushed up to the force field with a fist drawn back, teeth bared, eyes black. As her chest made contact, the field boomed a single note. She staggered back, her face shifting quickly through surprise, agony, tears, and then full on rage. “Oh, you! *You* made me do that! Oh, you are going to become — strip by painful strip — the longest braided rope in the universe! I’ll use your reeking, scaly hide to hang each and every one of your mouth-breathing, dimwitted crew mates.”

She bent to retrieve a metal tray meant to hold instruments. She hucked it like a spinning bath’let at him. It boomed off the force field at Zub’s throat level and clattered back across the debris-strewn Sickbay floor. She stood still, fist clenched, scowling murderously, huffing in trembling breath after breath. 

Zub felt he had no idea short of a hypospray to calm this woman enough to find out more about her.

He turned his head to see the two CMO’s regarding him from the edge of a privacy screen. 

=/\= Ensign Enel? =/\= Sarena's voice came across loud and clear, so it was impossible to miss the hint of displeasure in the only two words she spoke.

Zub jolted, eyes wide. In his zeal to reestablish Gemma, he had forgotten Commander Valentine’s strategy meeting. “Yes Commander, sorry Commander, I will be right there Commander," 

He rushed out of Sickbay and began to disappear down the corridor as only a giant running lizard on his long hind legs could do.

Abrasivnyy called after him before the door cut her off, her voice rough from yelling, “Some people bring happiness wherever they go, others simply when they just go. You are the latter group, so THANK YOU for making me happy!”

=-=
David Michael Inverso

Chief Security and Tactical Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977

“He is a first-rate collector who can, upon all occasions, collect his wits.”
— George D. Prentice
M13-B034: USS BASTET: Iverson: 35013.1000 ("Decisions and Actions")
---
"Decisions and Actions"
(Previous Post: (ANU) "Intel Operative's Log" / (BAS) "Do I Bug You?")
---

Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 1, Observation Lounge 
Stardate: 35013.1000

The senior staff of the USS BASTET gathered once again, this time though without their counterparts from the ANUBIS present which made the Observation Lounge feel a great deal larger than it was.

"How is Gemma?" Selene inquired, despite what Erik might believe, the well being of her crew was of the utmost importance to her.

"Physically, Miss Abrasivnyy is exactly as expected," Sofia reported. "Her bio-signs are perfect which means that her nanites are working as they were designed to. I am not sure what race she is supposed to be though, there is no match on record. All of her other personalities have presented themselves as someone we could identify..."

"One more than others," A'Janni mumbled under his breath, the one-eyed Caitian recalling, despite himself, the time when Gemma had taken on the likeness and mannerism of the Kzinti Queen Sheetora.

"Psychologically?" Captain Iverson asked turning her attention to the Joint Trill sitting right next to the Doctor.

"I am sorry Captain, I did not have time to perform any sort of psychological assessment, not that I believe it would have made a difference," Nicole apologized.

"Sweet Miss Abrasivnyy is the epitome of what we can expect from someone possessing her, shall we saw, slightly eclipsed sunny disposition," the Chief of Security added easily recalling the recent exchange the two of them shared in Sickbay. Noticing a few enquiring expressions directed in his direction, the Ensign figured that a quick explanation was in order to justify his statement. "I went back into Sickbay to see if I could reach Gemma."

"He failed," Sofia chuckled, letting everyone imagine that she had just figured the outcome by the way Zub has spoken and not that she had been there to witness the end-part of their 'discussion'.

Selene sighed. "Unfortunately, this leaves us short of a key position for this mission. Without an ILO, it will be a lot more difficult to find the best possible way to deal with the Confederacy."

"Excuse me, Captain," the Asian Chief Science Officer began. "Are the officers from the ANUBIS not going to help in this part of the mission?"

"I would much rather we did work together on this," the Captain confirmed without any hesitation. "The problem is that Captain Morningstar has made his stance very clear. I forced him to stay onboard the BASTET so that we could proceed with the new mission objective, but he and his officers are under no obligations to help."

"I am sure that Captain Morningstar, Commander Shar'El and the others will not leave us to face this crisis by ourselves," the Trill Counsellor said with conviction.

"I am not saying that you are wrong, Counsellor," Selene noted with a faint nod of her head. "I simply do not want to count of people that might or might not be there. I would much rather have more available resources than we had planned for instead of the opposite."

"Still looking on the brighter side of things I see," Sarena teased knowing very well that Selene had never been, nor would likely never be, the kind of person to look upon things with any level of unwarranted hope.

"Captain," the Caitian Flight Control Officer began drawing the attention of everyone onto him. "If the BASTET is going to remain here under the protection of the Dimensional and Temporal Drives, I volunteer to head over to the station and see what I can find out about this Confederacy."

"With Lieutenant Stark at Operations, the bridge will be well manned," Commander Valentine pointed out.

"I would like to volunteer as well, Captain," the Voth Chief of Security said. "It would be imprudent to send someone alone, and I suspect that given what we have heard about that station, an extra pair of muscles would not go amiss."

Selene glanced over to Sarena to see if she would object but when the First Officer said nothing, the Captain saw that as an endorsement. "All right. Let us go with that plan for the time being. Ensign Enel, Lieutenant A'Janni, you will go over to the station only as a recon team. You are not to engage or get yourselves drawn into anything that might hinder your ability to return to the BASTET. In order for you not to draw any unwanted attention, you will take the ship referred to as EAGLE-5."

"It might take some convincing to get Krokus to agree to that," the joint Trill said as she playfully glanced in the direction of the Flight Control Officer and Chief of Security. Individually it was hard to imagine either one of them having any sort of trouble to convince anyone into doing anything, but together it was beyond expectations that they would be able to accomplish such an easy task.

"Lieutenant Mitshiba," Selene said bringing the meeting back on track. "I would like for you to go over every piece of data we have in regards to our latest dimensional jump. I would very much like to know what happened."

"Of course, I will get on it right away. Maybe if I present this to Lieutenant Commander Maya she will not be able to resist wanting to help," Misaki chuckled.

"Knowing Maya, I would not be surprised if she was already on that mystery, leaving you to help *her* instead of the other way around," Selene said before shifting her attention onto the Doctor and Counsellor. "I would like the two of you to try and get Gemma back. I know that it is very likely that Commander Shar'El will offer to help us, but I would still prefer to have our own Intel Liaison Operative working on this mission."

"Of course, Captain," the two ladies said in unison before the meeting was adjourned.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 5, Sickbay
Stardate: 35013.1015  

The woman with the long flowing blonde hair stood with her shoulder against the wall and her arms crossed while looking at across the force field at the still fuming woman. "Are you done yet."

"YOU! What are you doing here?" Abrasivnyy demanded as if she was in any position to demand anything from anyone.

"I am here to break you out of this place," Fiona said as she reached for a control panel and placed her flat hand against it. A few seconds later the force field simply vanished.

"You better not be expecting me to thank you for that," the wild-haired woman raged on. "I know you and I know what you are capable of. You could have come and got me out of there a long time ago. So, you better have a bloody good reason for making me wait as long as you did, you sorry excuse for a wannabe somebody."

"I had a few things to take care of first," Fiona said not in the least bit bothered by the other woman's attempt to goat her. "I came as soon as I heard that you were here, although I will say that I am surprised."

"You being able to set one foot in front of the other should surprise you more than you can handle," Abrasivnyy unleashed. "I'm here and I do not want to be, so move and get me off this 'clean' ship," she said as if the fact that the BASTET was 'clean' as she described it was the most repulsive trait it or anything else could have.

As they made their way the to door, it slid open and revealed the Chief Medical Officer and Counsellor just about to walk in. With the reflexes of a trained fighter, Fiona reached out for the two ladies and pulled them inside, knocking them unconscious long before they realized what was happening.

Fiona and Abrasivnyy made their exit leaving Doctor Andersson and Counsellor Dima lying on the floor of Sickbay knowing that by the time they woke up it would already be too late to stop them from leaving the BASTET.

---
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35013.1025

"Captain, someone is over-writing the controls of the shuttle bay doors," Lieutenant Stark reported. Tractor beam and all other control systems have been taken off-line. It would appear that the ship your doppelganger came onboard with is leaving the shuttle bay."

"If we try to stop it, or even just follow it, we will leave ourselves open to be detected," Commander Valentine quickly pointed out. "We have no idea what kind of trouble that could lead to."

Selene snarled as she watched the ship on their main view screen pull out of the shuttle bay and then set course for the space station. "Get Captain Morningstar and Commander Shar'El up here, now! Our plans have changed."  

---
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) 
M17-A034: USS ANUBIS: Ya'Han: 35013.1035 ("Time For Red")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Time For Red"
[previous post were (ANU) "Intel Operative's Log" / (BAS) "Decisions and Actions"]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: BASTET, Deck 5, Sickbay
Stardate: 35013.1035

The Nylaan, with her fiery red hair, arrived in Sickbay after having run through the corridors making a lot of people question what was going on.  The BASTET was not her ship, nor was it her responsibility to protect those abroad, yet Ya'Han felt a very distinct sting when she saw Counselor Dima and Doctor Andersson laying on the floor, unconscious. It did not take a top-notch investigator to understand what happened, but again it was not part of her duties to go after whoever had done this. The safest course of action was to stay where she was and offer whatever assistance was required of her. In the meantime, she would fall back on her medical training and make sure that the two victims were not suffering from any severe injuries.

"WOAH," Doctor Bruxa said as she joined the Sec/Tac in the room, instantly noticing the Nylaan's white hair. Hoping to avoid any sort of unwanted exchange between the two of them, Satella immediately went into medical response mode.  "How are they?"

"Unconscious," Ya'Han replied. "Vitals appear to be strong and I am not seeing any marks or blood loss indicative of an external injury."

"Look at the markings on their necks," the ANUBIS' CMO said. "Whoever did this used what I can only guess was something resembling a Vulcan neck pinch. If enough pressure is applied to the nerves, it can easily cause a surge in nerve input leading to a loss of consciousness. Who could have done this to them, and why?"

"It was the Captain's double from this dimension," Sofia said as she slowly came back to consciousness. "It happened so fast. One second she was standing in Sickbay in front of us, the next we were being dragged inside by the neck. The last thing I remember is a wave of unimaginable pain rushing through my brain.  I never saw anyone move that fast," the Doctor added before continuing a few seconds later. "That's not true, she could move that fast. Speaking of which, where is Gemma?"

"My theory, which might not make a lot of sense at this time thanks to the headache I am experiencing, is that Fiona came here to free her from the force field she was stuck behind," Counselor Dima answered, the Trill doing her best to brush off the stun-induced grogginess of her mind. "Abrasivnyy claimed right from the starts that this dimension and the nearby space station was home, so it is highly probable that the two of them knew each other before today."

"Just once I would like for us to go on a mission and not have any unexpected surprises be thrown our way," Sofia said as he reached out and took hold of Nicole's hand.

"We did that once," the joint Trill said as she smiled back and squeezed the other woman's hand. "Everyone got bored on ELYSIA because nothing unexpected ever happened. It is those unexpected moments that make us cherish what is important."

"I will take care of them," Satella said to the white-haired Nylaan. "I think there is a more urgent need for additional forces on the Security team than on the Medical team."

Ya'Han narrowed her eyes as she looked at the ANUBIS's CMO. It was more likely that the excuse given had been meant to get the Sec/Tac to leave before one of them said something unprofessional, but the more she thought about it, the more the white-haired woman realized that Bruxa was right.  "I'll be on the bridge," she informed has she left Sickbay with her once again bright fiery red hair swaying on her back.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]  
Setting: BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35013.1045

The moment Jayson saw Ya'Han stepped onto the bridge, he thought to himself that he was in trouble. The solid red hair was already enough to be concerned about, but the way she had walked in made it evident that she was on a mission.

"Lt. Ya'Han, is there a problem?" Captain Iverson asked having also noticed the determination in the woman's step.

"I am just here to offer my assistance," the Sec/Tac said. "I am aware of what happened in Sickbay and that you have two people missing. I thought that maybe you could use an extra pair of hands."

Captain Iverson turned to look at Captain Morningstar who, as per her request, had come to the bridge along with Commander Shar'El. The two senior-most officers of the ANUBIS quietly shook their heads and shrugged their shoulders. If Ya'Han wanted to offer her skills and expertise, neither one of them had any reason to object.

"We were making plans to go after them using the EAGLE-5," Ensign Enel said once he saw that both sets of command-level officers appeared to agree. "Since you have already been to that space station, your presence could prove to be of help in our search for them."

Ya'Han considered the offer as she looked in Jayson's direction. They needed to sit and talk things out but it was not something that either one of them would likely be willing or ready to do at this time, in the unfamiliarity of the BASTET. So, after a few seconds of deliberation, the Sec/Tac agreed.

"I would like to go as well," Shar'El said. "Whoever Gemma believes herself to be now, she is still an ILO and as such, I need to make sure that she is returned to the BASTET safe and sound."

The two Captains looked at each other in silence, neither one of them willing to go against an ILO, especially since her argument made sense.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Hanali Han

Chief of Security / Chief Tactical Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M17-A035: USS ANUBIS: Lopez: 35013.1045 ("Diplomatic Force")
-=-=-
"Diplomatic Force"
[Previous post: (ANU) "Time For Red" & (BAS) "Decisions and Actions"]
-=-=-
 
Setting:  USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 35013.1045
 
No matter the ship, no matter the crew, there was one unchangable constant that could be obsrved by those serving aboard a vessel travelling amongst the stars. When something happened within the confines of the hull, everyone would come to know about it. The more significant that event was, the quicker the news spread through the decks and sections.  So it was no surprise that the entire crew knew of the escape of the Captian's dimensional twin along with the missing BASTET's ILO, Lt. Gemma.

Easily imagining that the command staff were doing what they did best, meaning arguing as to the best course of action to take, the Bolian/Human Ambassador decided to head to Sickbay to check in with the medical staff.  Upon her arrival, Xana locked in on the ship's CMO and CNS who were beinggiven a thorough once-over by the ANUBIS' own Doctor Bruxa.

"Things are never boring," Bonviva said as she approached.

"That's what I said," Sofia exclaimed quickly turning to look at the Trill Counselor sitting on the bed next to her who acknowledged the whole thing with a soft smile and shake of her head.

"Could you please stop moving," Doctor Bruxa requested. "It will only take me a few more monutes to finish these medical scans."

"You always say that when you know that it will take a lot longer," Adriana said as she walked in.

"You should be here," Xana snapped the moment she recognized the voice of her Junior Ambassador. "You shouldbe resting," she added turning to face the Hyspanic woman.

"Somehow, I do not believe that Sickbay is the proper location to find an Ambassador," Adriana fired back in good humor. "I am fine," the CNS added. "Like you, I wanted to see what happened and if I could help in any way."

"Nothing to see and nothing much more that can be done," Satella said. "Doctor Andersson and Counselor Dima were knocked out using something that resembles a Vulcan neck pinch."

"In other words Miss Fiona was more than she appeared or led on," Lopez sighed. "Why come here to free the ILO though?"

"Gemma was a solo Intel Operative before she joined the BASTET," Nicole said feeling at ease speaking to a fellow Counselor. "Our theory is that the two of them met in this dimension during one of her earlier missions.

"Rude, abnoxious, full of herself," Adriana said listing the woman's best known attributes. "She would have fit in perfectly with the station's crowd."

"I am sure that Captain Iverson is working on a plan to go after them," Sofia offered.

"It is going to take more than a single team to find anyone in that place," Bonviva said, tapping into her personal experience. "That thing is bigger on the inside, at least it sure felt that way. There are a thousand places someone could go and never be found."

"There are a thounsand places where someone couldalso be held against their will and tortured for days and weeks without anyone else knowing or even caring about it," Adriana added. That statement made it clear that as well as she claimed to be physically, her mental state was still very fragile.

"I think it is time for you to get back to our room," Xana calmly said as she moved closer ready to take Adriana' arm into hers to ensure that the CNS would not argue too much.

"Dont!" Lopez snapped pulling her arm away. "Don't treat me like I'm broken. I am here and I am fine, but we both know how that place can affect people, how it can change them. I understand the need for Captain Iverson and the others from her crew to want to find their missing officer back. We both know that I understand that need better than most. What we also understand better than they do is the station and its people.  Sending anyone in there without the proper tools is only going to led to more problems. You and I both need to go up to the bridge and offer Captain Iverson our assistance. They are going to need us out there, to show them who and what to watch out for."

"I do not believe that it would be a good idea for you to return there," Xana said trying as best as she could to politely convince her Junior Ambassador to chose a different path. That she wanted to help was admirable, but there were other waysfor her to do that other than joining an away team. "I want you to be safe."

"This is not about what you *want*," Adriana said with an amount of force and conviction that took Xana aback. "This is about what they need, what we need. We need to go there and find their missing officer. We need to go there and stop the Confederacy. We need to go there and make sure that no one goes through what I did, not today, not ever.  If you are not going to support me on this, then I will go there on my own.

The azure woman blinked her violet eyes several times as she strared straight at the shorter woman standing in front of her. The reasoning for Adriana's outburst could be put in question, but Xana instead recognized the drive she had always admired in the woman.

"Fine, let us go see Captain Iverson."

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi
 
Lieutenant JG Adriana Lopez [Access Character BIO for Adriana Lopez]
Ship's Counselor & Junior Ambassador
USS ANUBIS
M13-B035: USS BASTET: Andersson: 35013.1050 ("Who Helps the Helpers")
=-=
"Who Helps the Helpers"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Diplomatic Force" by Marissa / (BAS) "Decisions and Actions" by Jessica]
=-=
 
Setting: USS BASTET, Sickbay
Stardate: 35013.1050

Sofia and Nic remained perfectly still and quiet as they watched with interest the Ambassador and Junior Ambassador exit Sickbay. As soon as the door slid shut behind the diplomatic duo, the CMO and CNS turned to look at one another.

"She should not be heading anywhere other than her quarters to rest," Dr Andersson said.

"Easier said than done," Dima countered. "Her mind is desperately searching for closure, for a way to put what happened behind her and as far away as possible. I knew that it would be difficult for her with the BASTET so close to where she was imprisoned and tortured, but I had hoped that I might be able to use the opportunity to help her come to terms with everything that happened. The first step in such recovery is for the victim to accept what took place and that she is now safe.  I never anticipated that she would want to blindly rush in seeking justice like that."

Sofia chuckled dryly. "First, you needed to look at her as a member of the Ambassadorial corps instead of a Counselor, it is evident that they do not look at situations in the same manner. Second, justice is not what Adriana is after, she wants blood-spilling revenge.  Did you see the look in her eyes and the way she gave Xana absolutely no room to say anything other than what her Junior Ambassador wanted to hear? That woman is out for some major payback."

"I'm a Counselor with four lifetimes of experience," Dima smirked. "I can tell the difference between someone wanting justice and someone after revenge. I was just trying to be polite, but to be completely honest, Adriana's case is not that clear cut. There is something in the tone of her voice that did point to her wanting justice and to make sure no one else suffers as she did. In some ways, that mindset is helping to temper her more vengeful words and actions.  I am just undecided as to whether this is a good thing or not. It might indicate a split in her thinking and processing of the facts and details, and that is rarely a good thing."

"Then maybe her going after Gemma is the best course of action she could be considering," Sofia sighed summoning upon her an instant glare from Nicole. "What?" the CMO said defensively. "Are you going to tell me that there is a better person out there than our ILO to talk about what it means to have multiple ways of thinking about anything all crammed into a single head? Like it or not, she is the resident expert in that field."

"Enough to make you hope that she is the only one," Nic added dropping her head in a hint of despair.

"You know," Satella frustratingly chimed in. "You two make it very difficult to perform any basic medical examination. Now your base bio-signs are all over the map and I will have to start over just to make sure that the results were not made invalid by whatever it was that you two just did."

"Doctors do make the worst patients," Nicole huffed coming across as serious as possible as she verbally laid blame on Sofia.

"Wait a minute! You are not going to put that on *my* shoulders.  Are you actually trying to tell us that Counselors are easy to deal with?" Sofia growled back in such a manner that Doctor Bruxa took a step back worried that she had caused the two women to genuinely be angry at one another. The Doctor and Counselor stared at one another through narrowed eyes which only served to further concern Satella who was now expecting this to turn physical.

"Fine!" Nicole said jumping off the medical bed. "You want to play it that way, I'm leaving. You can prove that you are just a perfect patient in times like this, well, you can try.."

"Do not think that you are just going to walk away from me like that," Sofia said jumping off her bed and quickly going after the Trill who was speed-walking to the door all under the bemused and wide-open eyes of the ANUBIS' CMO. "Are you going to tell me that throwing a tantrum like this makes you a better patient?"

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Corridor outside Sickbay
Stardate: 35013.1055

Once outside Nic and Sofia stopped and looked back at the now-closed door to Sickbay, both apparently waiting to see if someone would be coming after them. When no one came, the two lovers looked at each other once more before smiling.

"Are you sure that was the right way to handle the situation?" Dima asked.

"I was not the one who stormed out of Sickbay," Sofia chuckled, "but that was a nice touch. I could not have done it better myself.  We both realized that Satella was not about to let us leave any time soon," Andersson pointed out. "She's a good Doctor, but I think she feels a little intimidated by the fact that she is not on her ship dealing with people who are not her crew."

"She is simply trying to prove her worth to Captain Iverson and the rest of the BASTET's crew," the Trill CNS said. "You cannot blame her for that."

"No, but it would have been nice if she realized that there are more important things for us all to be focussed on," the CMO said.

"So you figured that causing her possible long-lasting psychological scars was a good way to go about showing her that?" Nicole said in a slightly teasing manner.

"Of course," Sofia grinned. "You are the Ship's Counselor, so I won't be the one who will have to deal with her when she loses it and cracks."  The Doctor laughed for a few seconds before regaining her composure. "Right now we have other things to worry about, namely our heading to the bridge and get ourselves assigned to whatever team is heading to that station in search of Gemma."

"You mean Abrasivnyy?"

"Gemma, Abrasivnyy, Anya, Gabrielle, Ema, and countless more.  They are all different names for the same person, a person who I would like to mention is a friend and has helped us many times before and who now needs our help."

"What about your department?" Nic asked.

"I am not worried, Satella will take care of everything while we are gone."

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35013.1110

By the time Nic and Sofia arrived, Captain Iverson and Captain Morningstar were already dealing with two sets of officers, each wanting to go after the faux-Iverson and latest alter-ego of their ILO.

The security team comprised of Lt. Ya'Han, Lt. JG A'Janni and Ens. Enel stood on one side while the Ambassadorial duo of Xana and Adriana stood on the other with the two Captain's stuck in the middle.

Commander Shar'El, who should have been standing by her Captain's side instead stood opposite to her superior clearly supporting the other side of whatever debate Nic and Sofia had just walked in on.

Seeing a lull in the discussion, Doctor Andersson made her move. "Captain, Nic and I would like to volunteer to join whatever team is going after Gemma. She is a member of the crew and we both agreed that we need to help her as she has done for us so many times before.

Sarena could not help but laugh as she stood near the edge of the bridge, far enough not to be dragged into the debate but close enough to have front-row seats to the whole affair.  "You can say what you want about Gemma, but she knows how to make an impression on people," Valentine said.

"Alright," Selene reluctantly agreed. "Let's figure out the best way to go about it and use all of our volunteering resources in the best possible manner."

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Chief Medical Officer
USS BASTET

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS
M17-A036: USS ANUBIS: Morningstar: 35013.1115 ("From One surprise to the Next")
##########
"From One surprise to the Next"
Previous posts (ANU) "Diplomatic Force" / (BAS) "Who Helps the Helpers"
##########

"Would you like to know your future? If your answer is yes, think again. Not knowing is the greatest life motivator. So enjoy, endure, survive each moment as it comes to you in its proper sequence, a surprise."
- Vera Nazarian

=====
Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 35013.1115

The Native American had to admit that he was surprised. To see Ya'Han volunteering to go after Gemma made sense as the Nylaan was not the type to just stay put when there were things to do, especially the physical combat sort of things. To have his First Officer step forward and offer her help as an ILO to go search for the missing ILO was also not entirely unexpected, although Erik had thought that things were not as amicable between Gemma and Shar'El. Obviously, personal feelings took a back seat when it came to the professional collaboration between Intel Operatives within the fleet.

Now, to have Ambassador Bonviva also offer her knowledge and skills was unexpected as it meant that she would be returning to the exact same location she and the others had just managed to escape from. As surprising as Xana's announcement was, it paled in comparison to Adriana also stating her desire to return to the alien space station.  Of all the people the Native American could have expected to come forward to help in this situation, Counsellor Lopez had been the absolute last one on his list, if she was on it at all.

"Are you sure about this?" Erik inquired of Adriana. Maybe she had not thought this through. Maybe she was being pressured into acting against what he believed should be her overwhelming need to protect herself from anything and everything about that place? Maybe he misheard what she had said? Granted all of those possibilities were highly unlikely, but as her Captain, Morningstar needed to be absolutely certain that her volunteering to return to the space station was true her decision.

The Junior Ambassador did not have the time to answer before the doors to the turbolift opened once more allowing another pair to step onto the bridge and join the rapidly growing gathering of officers.

"Let me guess," Commander Valentine chuckled from the other side of the bridge. "You two are here to volunteer."  The two ladies nodded their heads and smiled as if all of this was perfectly normal.

"You have a good crew," Morningstar noted as she leaned in closer to Iverson.

"Let's just say that we have gone through quite a bit together," Selene offered as an explanation.  "All right, we will take down the names of those who wish to be part of this and get back to you once Captain Morningstar and I have figured out the make-up of the away teams."

"Ambassador Bonviva, would you mind coming with us?" The ANUBIS' CO asked. "You were on that station and your input would be most valuable."

Xana hesitated, looking at Adriana who seemed as determined as ever. The last thing the Ambassador wanted was to leave her assistant alone while they discussed who would team up with whom, but Bonviva understood the need for better preparations.  Picking up on the not-so-subtle hints coming from both women, Ya'Han stepped forward. "I will keep her company," the Nylaan offered.

=====
Setting: USS BASTET, Captain's Ready Room
Stardate: 35013.1120

Selene sat at her desk while Erik and Xana sat opposite her, all three having a PADD in their hands.  "All right," Iverson said. "Where should we start?" The question was directed at the Ambassador who effortlessly picked up on the fact that she had been forced into the proverbial spotlight.

"The station is huge, but from what we experienced, I can tell you that there are at least four main areas that we should start with. These are the Landing Bay, the Battle Arena, the Zocalo, and the lower levels where Adriana was being kept. We never got the chance to fully explore any of them so it might be a good idea to get a better feel for the layout of the inner station."

"Already sounds like a place I would not want to visit," Iverson noted. "Since we have no way to gain access to the station other than using the EAGLE-5, my guess is that everyone will be going through the Landing Bay."

"Yes," Xana confirmed." There is a security check at the entrance meaning that everyone will need to be accompanied by someone who can vouch for the others."

"Sounds like you already have a plan," Erik noted.

"I do," the Bolian/Human confirmed. "Ya'Han can pass as 'The Agent' Han. No one will question her or whoever she is coming back with.  Maybe we could have her take Enel and A'Janni to the Arena. I am sure that the three of them will have no problems fitting right in with the combatants thus avoid them drawing attention if they were anywhere else on the station."

"I do not like the idea of having all of our 'strongest' people in one place, but if you believe that it is best," Selene noted sounding less than thrilled by the idea.

"Sonja was mistaken for Sonju, who is also known as 'The Crown', while we were there, and again she would not be given any trouble at any of the security checkpoints. She could go pretty much anywhere she wants and might be the best choice for a recon team deeper into the station."

"Sonja and Shar'El would make a good team," Erik proposed.

"I would suggest having Lopez and, say maybe Lieutenant Mitshiba go with them," Xana offered. "Not having to deal with people and places that she has seen before may make it easier on Adriana, and I am sure that your CSciO will relish the opportunity to explore something new."

"Who do you suggest would take on investigating the lower levels?" Morningstar inquired, taking notes on his PADD as he did so.

"The lower levels are a maze-like collection of corridors and rooms," the Ambassador said, realizing for the first time that she was performing the role of a military tactical, something that she had never expected to do during her career.  "I think Maya would be great there, not only because of her ability to scientifically look at the area but also because I suspect that her unique skills as a shapeshifter might come in handy if things go south."

"Who do you see as being the one to lead that team?" Morningstar asked.

"I thought it would be you," Xana replied. "You are a natural in tracking and exploring. I would also need to be there because I can easily pass as Xena, who no one would question if she was taking anyone down there." Mentioning the name of her dying counterpart made the Bolian/Human pause for a brief moment, forcing her to collect her thoughts and emotions.

"All right, what about the Zocalo team?" Captain Iverson inquired realizing that they were quickly running out of senior officers.

"That would have to be you, Captain Iverson," Bonviva said without holding back. "I am sure that Doctor Andersson would be able to give you a similar head of hair as your counterpart allowing you to wander the shops without too many issues as it is evident that Fiona has been here before."

"Alone?"

"Of course not," Xana reassured. "Lieutenant Stark and Doctor Bruxa would be able to accompany you and provide whatever technical or medical assistance that might surface."

Both Erik and Xana could see Selene thinking about what had been proposed, and each expected her to offer some kind of objection but after a few seconds, the BASTET's CO simply nodded her head.

"Let's go," she said getting up from behind her desk. "We have already wasted too much time planning all of this. We need to get over there, find Gemma. nd find a way to stop the Confederacy from sending an infiltration team to our home."

--==(/\)==--
Francois Charette

Commanding Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC 18501

AND

Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA
M13-B036: USS BASTET: Enel: 35013.1150 ("Scout's Honor")
=-=
"Scout's Honor"
Previous posts: (ANU) “From One surprise to the Next” by Francois / (BAS) “Who Helps the Helpers” by Tiffany

=-=
Setting: USS BASTET, Shuttle Bay
Stardate: 35013.1120

The Nylaan, the black and red streaks in her waist-length hair beginning to shade toward fiery red, stepped up to the furry, one-eyed Caitian and the scaly 7-foot tall Voth who waited while others boarded the boxy EAGLE-5. Lt. Ya'Han narrowed her eyes as she looked up at them. "I do not want this decision to appear to rest solely on my being the ranking member of the three of us. I have been to that space station and fought in that arena as well as helped affect an escape. I have been an ANUBIS Sec/Tac for many, many missions. Given this experience, I believe it is my job to take the lead and make sure that nothing gets in our way on this mission."

Lt. JG A’Janni kept his furry tiger face neutral, but he nodded. By all accounts, Ya’Han was highly capable, especially at fighting.

Ensign Enel gave the ANUBIS Sec/Tac a brief smile. “Agreed. I have been impressed with your analysis of your last time aboard that space station.”

She scowled up at the BASTET’s Sec/Tac ensign. “Along the lines making sure that nothing gets in our way, SPACE STATION NOWHERE is not a place where law and order is held in any sort of regard.”

Zub Enel replied more as a joke, “No hero’s welcome?”

She scowled more darkly. “That place is a criminal enterprise. It is criminal enterprises within criminal enterprises with a million side hustles. What I mean is, you cannot go there projecting that perfect image of a law-abiding Federation security officer. Not only will you get absolutely nowhere, you will endanger everyone on the away team.”

Indignation lit a coal in Zub’s boiler. He had the trace of a growl as he answered her. “I was not planning to act as a security officer.”

Her hair had gone full battle red. “How can you not?! I have interacted with you enough to see you are all ‘By The Book’ and want to be everybody’s hero! You are a ‘top of his class at the academy’ Do Gooder. You want to do everything *right*. You want to bring Truth, Justice and the Federation Way to all people, especially the downtrodden.”

The Security Chief dropped his three-fingered hands into a fig leaf and scowled down at her. “I consider that a good thing.”

She jutted a finger up at his face. “That might be true for a starship or a Federation base or even on most planets in the Federation, but I am telling you as forcefully as I know how, on SPACE STATION NOWHERE doing the ‘right thing’ is the absolute *wrong* thing to do! Got that?”

“Not really.” He kept his tone cold even though he felt like his body was filling with searing steam.

Ya’Han took in a breath. She forced herself to look at The Voth and his reaction. He clearly was feeling defensive, but she knew she was right. “That arena is a gladiatorial grudge match with no rules. You have to prepare for fight a complete brute or even one of us. You will die unless you forget everything you’re ‘supposed to do’ and instead use intuition and improvisation. Do whatever will work for that situation, whether it is immoral or illegal, to survive. If you need to lie? Lie. Cheat? Cheat. Hit? Hit. Kill? Kill. Am I being clear?”

A’Janni felt himself go over on the defensive for Zub Enel. The big cat man was impressed with the ANUBIS Sec/Tac’s fierceness. She did make a valid point. Still, he raised his paw hands palm out toward her. “He is no noob. I have been in the field with him. He is good in a scrap. Keeps his wits. He helped me and Commander Valentine hold off a platoon of Masters, barehanded!”

He felt a chill as her angry face turned toward him. Her finger jabbed toward his face. “You and him both need to follow my lead over there or we could all die.”

She did rank him and Zub Enel. “Yes, sir.”

She glared up at the towering BASTET Sec/Tac for his answer. His down fluttered as if buffeted by steam jetting from between his flaming red scales. After a pause he said in a labored voice, “Yes, sir.”

Her face softened. “I do respect you, Ensign Enel. It is just your natural way of being that will put you in danger and everybody else.”

“Understood, sir. I will endeavor to not be myself.”

A’Janni asked, “Permission to smack him around if he forgets.” He looked up at the big lizard man. Zub’s angry glare cooled when he recognized A’Janni was joking.

Ya’Han broke her combative stance. She looked up at the two men. “Very well. Carry on.”

After Ya’Han moved off toward the increasingly packed EAGLE-5, A’Janni lightly smacked Zub’s upper arm with a fist. “Come on. I will show you which end of a phaser to avoid.”

Zub rubbed the spot on his upper arm. “We do not need no stinking phasers.”

 “You did not quote that right.”

Zub huffed out a sigh. “I am practicing me not being me.”

“She *is* right, you know. You are like a big boy scout.”

“What is a boy scout?”

A’Janni’s face went slack. “I am not 100% sure. But I am sure she wants you to be a big ‘man’ scout.”

“You make no sense.”

“Neither do I.”

Zub Enel felt his fire of indignation cool a bit. “I will think about what she has said.”

A companionable distance apart, the stocky tiger and tall lizard ambled toward the rickety shuttle.

=-=
David Michael Inverso

Chief Security and Tactical Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977

“All fixed set patterns are incapable of adaptability or pliability. The truth is outside of all fixed patterns.”
- Bruce Lee
M17-A037: USS ANUBIS: Stark: 35013.1155 ("Orders")
"Orders"
[previous (ANU) "From One Surprise to the Next" / (BAS) "Scout's Honor"]

[/\]
Setting: USS BASTET, Shuttle Bay
Stardate: 35013.1155

The plan was set. The teams were made. The next step was to board the EAGLE-5 and get to SPACE STATION NOWHERE to retrieve Lt. Gemma and put a cork in the Confederacy's plans. Before boarding though, each team gathered to talk about how they would proceed in their specified areas.  Everyone accepted with little effort that such discussions would be very difficult to carry out while crammed in whatever that ship was supposed to be.  Just looking at it, Stark could barely imagine that they would all be able to fit in there.

Jayson stood by himself, watching the others as talked about the mission while he waited for the other members of his team to arrive. As he scanned the various groups, his eyes stopped on one particular team, the one with the fiery red-haired Nylaan.  The OPS Officer could not help but smile as he watched Ya'Han explain to the Caitian and Voth how things were going to unfold. It made sense in more ways than one for her to do so and he understood it.

She outranked them both, so protocol dictated that she would be the one in charge. She also possessed firsthand experience in dealing with whatever they would encounter on that station. That she was a natural leader also made it that much easier for her to step into that role. If those were not enough to make her the best candidate for the position, there was something else that distinguished her from anyone else... her personal background.

It was true that she despised talking about her past. Ya'Han rarely spoke of her days as the youngest daughter of an overbearing world leader, or the abuses she endured on a nearly daily basis during her escape from Ferengi controlled space.  From what little she had allowed him to know, Jayson could only imagine the hell she had endured creating countless nightmares that she was still fighting against.  He had given her everything he could to help and support her, but obviously, it was not enough.

Standing where he was, looking at only her, Jayson almost forgot how much she had hurt him by the way she handled the whole affair with his Lokustaar clone.  He had waited, given her the breathing room she asked for upon her return, but each time he tried to get close she pushed him further away.  Her pain was so great that she failed to see how much his own feelings were crushed by her keeping him away.  He admired her, he loved her, but there was just so much he could take before it became too much. Unfortunately, he was a mere human with feelings and needs of his own. Those aspects of his life were made that much clearer when Doctor Bruxa and landed on top of one another as they escaped ORION.

"There you are," Satella said as she crossed the shuttle bay closely followed by a woman sporting an elegant hairdo.

"Woah," Jayson exclaimed having thought for a split second that it was Fiona following the ANUBIS' CMO and not Selene Iverson. "My apologies Captain, I was just not expecting to see you like..."

"A blonde?!" Iverson said sounding on the verge of disgust. "Have you obtained the specifications of the Zocalo from Ambassador Bonviva?"

"Sorry," Jayson said apologizing once more. "I was thinking of other aspects of our collective mission to that station," he added glancing quickly at the fiery red-haired Nylaan, a gesture that Satella noticed.

"You two stay here," Captain Iverson said as she searched the room. "I will get the details we need from the Ambassador and I will be right back."

Seeing Jayson's attention returning onto the Arena team leader, Satella reached out and gently took hold of his hand. "She will be fine," the Doctor said trying her best to reassure the man. "We both know that she can take care of herself, and I am sure that her furry and scaly bodyguards are going to make sure she comes back without a single hair out of place."

"You sound like you actually care about what might happen to her," Jayson said with a hint of surprise. "With her out of the way, there would be no reason for me to oppose you... to oppose us."

"We both know that it is never that easy," Satella said. "Maybe I have been handing around Adriana too long, but I am starting to understand people much better than I used to. You still love her, and there is nothing I can do to change that. If something were to happen to her, you would feel more pain than you do now and that, in turn, would hurt me to see you that way. So, for your sake, I truly hope that nothing happens to you. That is what having feelings for someone means, you think of them before yourself."

Jayson turned to look at Satella, her words washing over him in a way that he could never have expected. As he was about to speak, Captain Iverson returned. "Alright you two, let's get going. Everyone has their orders and it's time to get this show on the road."  

[/\]
Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant Jayson Stark [Access Character BIO for Jayson Stark]
Chief of Operations
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M13-B037: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: 35013.1156 ("Fitting In")
"Fitting In"
Previous posts: (ANU) "Orders" & (BAS) "Scout's Honor"

///^\\\  
Setting: USS BASTET, Shuttle Bay
Stardate: 35013.1156

There she was, standing alongside the ANUBIS's First Officer, Chief Engineer and Counselor who also doubled at the Junior Ambassador. All three were experts in their respective fields, possessing abilities and knowledge that were sure to be more than helpful during the course of their search for Gemma.  True, their objective also included finding out about the Confederacy's plans and ways of stopping them, but for obvious reasons, Aki's primary goal was to find the BASTET's ILO.

Gemma could easily be described as strange and weird, but she was a member of their crew, an officer they all had come to know and accept as an integral part of their professional family. Aki hoped that the other three women of her team could keep this in mind as they investigated the unexplored areas of the alien space station.  Mitshina could not have been happier to be in the company of such strong women, all three of them coming across as ready to face whatever unknows they would come up against.  That aspect of their part of the mission was more than enough to excite the Asian scientist, yet she still found herself glancing over to the other teams and the members of her crew within each.

With their strength and size, Enel and A'Janni would provide more protection than the red-haired Chief of Security of the ANUBIS likely would require, so Aki thought that it would have been nice if even only one of them had been on her team instead.  Looking at Counselor Dima, the CSciO felt a sort of kinship with the joint Trill as both of them were the only members of the BASTET's crew in their respective teams.  The same could have been said about the Zocalo team comprised of Jayson, Satella and a now long blonde-hair Captain Iverson but Mitshiba doubted that Selene would have any issues with her team being the one in charge.

As she scanned the smaller teams getting ready to board the odd-looking EAGLE-5, Aki noticed something odd, or more accurately something missing. Doctor Andersson was nowhere to be seen? Had something happened to Sofia?  Were the rumors of a fight between Nicole and her been true, and if so was the disagreement that bad that the CMO had decided to withdraw from their quest to find and bring back Gemma? The Asian scientist was puzzled and concerned, worrying about the state of the Doctor and how her absence might affect their mission.

As Aki was trying to find a logical reason to explain the Doctor's absence, a familiar figure came running into the shuttle bay, her long medical robes having been replaced by a strange-looking outfit that the Asian CSciO could only venture a guess at its ultimate function.  "I was afraid that you would not be coming," Mitshiba said as Sofia came within earshot.

"Giving Captain Iverson her new hair was not as easy as you might think," the CMO said. "After I was done, I figured that it would be better if I changed into something more appropriate for our mission?"

"More appropriate?" Aki questioned while looking at the selection made by Sofia. "Are you expecting to run into some sort of color-blind, sand-dwelling, subterranean, jungle vegetation loving creature while we are on the station?"

"Captain Iverson asked me to join her team," Andersson said. "Since we will be visiting the Zocalo, which I was told is a very large and very colorful marketplace, I thought that this would make me a little less visible."

"A little *less* visible?!?" Aki was trying her best not to laugh. "I have the feeling that there will be people from our dimension who will be able to see you from where they are."

"Do you honestly think that I have gone too far?" Sofia asked with honesty as she looked at her clothing selection.

"I think you went too far when you *thought* of those clothes," the Asian woman said. "You getting dressed in any of that was beyond going *too far* and landed you squarely into the realm of *should never have happened in the first place*."

"Do you think I have time to change?"

"Doctor Andersson!" The Captain loudly said having noticed the CMO, an impossible task not to do given the way the woman had chosen to dress for the journey to SPACE STATION NOWHERE.

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant Misaki 'Aki' Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M17-A038: USS ANUBIS: Bonviva: 35013.1230 ("Acts of Optimism")
=/\=
Acts of Optimism
Previous posts: (ANU) "Orders" & (BAS) "Fitting In"

=/\=
“Motherhood is the biggest gamble in the world. It is the glorious life force. It’s huge and scary – it’s an act of infinite optimism.” 
—Gilda Radner

=/\=
Setting: EAGLE-5
Stardate: 35013.1230

“I can’t believe you actually slept in this thing,” Sonja said to Xana.  “What were you thinking?”

The ANUBIS CEO and Ambassador were up in the “cockpit” of EAGLE-5 getting set up for departure.  “I was thinking that I was trying to be not an imposition,” Xana said.  When Sonja just gave her “the look”, the Bolian/Human woman admitted as she sipped her thermos of iced espresso, “Well there’s a first time for everything.”

Sonja snorted, “I’ll say.”  Sliding down off her chair, the CEO said as she peered up under the console, “I know I repaired the optical data conduit, and I’ve rebuilt the temporal databanks nutation but ambient flux pattern is still not giving the readings that I want.”

As Ya’Han wandered over during Sonja’s concerns, Xana sought to reassure the Sec/Tac.  “It’s fine,” the Ambassador said.  “I think she just made up some of those words.”

Sonja pulled her head out and stuck her tongue out at Xana while Ya’Han shook her head.  “I know you didn’t,” the Nylaan said.  Looking back over her shoulder she continued on, “But we have everyone here so we’re ready when you are.”

The Engineer and Ambassador got up and looked at the EAGLE-5; a dozen people sitting down and ready to go on this adventure; with the 3 women in the front that meant 15 people were off and ready.  Based on the feedback from the ANUBIS team who had gone ahead, everyone had already changed out of their uniforms so they could blend in with the inhabitants of the station.  

“I’ll go to tell the Captain duo we’re off,” Xana said.  Making her way through the sea of people she found Morningstar and Iverson.  “Captains,” she said cordially, “our Winnebago with wings is about to take off.”  

“Very well,” Morningstar said.  

Xana leaned against a chair as she watched the EAGLE-5 gracefully exit the BASTET and enter space.  Morningstar and Iverson talked to the crew, dispersing inspirational words of wisdom while getting updates on the mission.  For her part, the Bolian/Human watched the sublime darkness wrap around the absurd craft they were in and allowed her mind to wander.

“Ambassador,” she heard from her left.  Turning she saw the BASTET’s CO coming back to where she was, taking a seat across to speak to her.  

Blinking her eyes, to bring herself to the present, Xana looked at Captain Iverson.  “My apologies, I was distracted.  How can I assist you?”

As Morningstar also made his way back, the BASTET CO leaned in.  Command made Iverson reluctant to trust someone new; yet she had to now because Gemma and the Federation was at stake.  Still she had to know who this was who helped them develop the tactics.  “Do you think our plan has a chance of working?” she asked softly.

Bonviva considered that.  “I was thinking just now about why I became an Ambassador,” she said softly.  “It was 14 years ago now and it was because I was pregnant with my daughter, Dahlia.”  

Morningstar said nothing but leaned against a bulkhead; he knew now that the azure woman’s rambling way of talking eventually got her to a point.  He wasn’t sure if he warned Iverson of that.

“Ambassador?” Iverson asked.

Xana smiled at that.  “I was in Starfleet, once,” she explained.  Shrugging she explained waving her hands around, “Better people than me can be ‘Fleet as everyone here demonstrates.”  Pausing she carefully picked her next words, “But I knew my job wasn’t finished.  I wanted to leave a better Federation for my children.”  Thinking she said, “Being a parent and being part of the Federation are both acts of optimism.  I just chose the most optimistic avenue I thought of: being the first one to advocate for relationships and peace, while still serving the Federation.”  Shrugging she finished off, “So the long and the short of my answer, Captain Iverson, is that I always find a way.”

“Your daughter must be proud of you,” Captain Morningstar said.

Xana surprised herself by letting out a delighted genuine laugh at that.  “Dahlia is now a teenager, my very breathing embarrasses her,” she admitted with a wide smile. 

As the looming SPACE STATION NOWHERE came into view, the Ambassador grew somber as did everyone else.  “Although I admit there are times I have to remind myself to be optimistic.”

=/\=
Sarah Albertini-Bond
USS ANUBIS

And

Dr. Tulla Keiku, Lieutenant 
USS PHOENIX
M17-A039: USS ANUBIS: Shar'El: 35013.1230 ("Observations")
=-=
"Obsrvations"
[the previous posts were (ANU) "Acts of Optimism" by Sarah / (BAS) "Fitting In" by Dawn]
=-=

Setting: EAGLE-5, Aft-Section
Stardate: 35013.1230

It was one of the many unwritten rules of an Intel Operative, no matter where they were, to observe those around them, to study their actions, to analyse their interactions and decipher their body language. Even if one could not hear what was being said, or understand the language they spoke, the way they moved alone and behaved with others could tell a lot about what was going on in their head.  Being a Ullian, Shar'El usually pushed this one step further by scanning the memories of those of interest to her, but here she was surrounded by fellow officers, shipmates and even friends, so the ExO / ILO simply observed, silently, quietly.

With her back against one of the furthest corners of the ship, the raven-haired Commander could see everyone as they tried to make themselves as comfortable as possible in the limited space available. It did not take a telepath to see that there was a lot of nervousness and anxiety floating about, everyone questioning some or all of the details of the upcoming mission. Shar'El could not help but also notice that many semed to have agendas and motivations all of their own, and this included the ExO / ILO who had not been entirely honest with everyone as to her reasons for embarking onto this quest. For the majority of the crew of the BASTET, finding the missing ILO was the primary objective of this venture. Dealing with the Confederacy's threat was likely a close second, but it was easy to see that most wanted to see Gemma found and returned to her ship safe and sound. Those sentiments were shared by the raven-haired ILO as she considered her counterpart from their sister ship a very valuable assest, more so than most could possibly realize.

With that in mind, Shar'El made herself as comfortable as possible while continuing to scan the people who were doing their best to weather the 'less-than-first-class' accomodations.  The ExO / ILO locked in on the team leaders as they relayed last minut instructions. Most were as attentive as could be but a select few appeared quite distracted.

Doctor Sofia Andersson, who joined the away teams at the last minute was clearly more preoccupied by the BASTET's Trill Counselor than whatever her Captain was saying. Shar'El questioned the reasoning behind having both CMO on the same team but eventually decided that it might prove to be the best for everyone.  While on the Zocalo which according to Ambassador Bonviva was a central hub of activity, the Doctors would be able to quickly respond to any emergencies while remaining in the relative safety of a more public area. Venturing into the corridors lining the Arena, or the dark and mysterious passageways of the levels below might have created problems of their own.

Looking at the Zocalo team more closely, the ExO / ILO focused on the other highly distracted officer she had noticed. It seemed that Captain Iverson, despite her new longblonde hair could not maintain Stark's attention on her, the human man instead at the fiery haired leader of the Arena team.  There was something odd about the way Jayson was looking at Ya'Han, his posture and expression indicating both dislike and admiration.  What Shar'El found even more interesting was the way Doctor Bruxa was looking at the man.  As she focused on Satella, the Ullian caught glimpses of a kiss the two had shared making the Commander almost feel glad that he was on the team with two Doctors although she was concerned as to how this might affect their mission.

Shifting back and forth between Sofia Andersson and Jayson Stark, Shar'El found it rather entertaining to see how each was looking at someone else but in clearly different ways and with very distinct mindsets. Equally entertaining was the fact that Captain Iverson seemed oblivious to this, the now blonde-haired woman clearly concerned by other matters, namely the whereabouts of her ILO and the threat to the Federation by the plans of the Confederacy.

Shar'El grinned ever so faintly as she wondered if Captain Iverson would still feel this way if she knew even only half of what the ExO / ILO knew about Lt. Gemma.

=-=
Tiffany Reeve

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
USS ANUBIS

Chief Medical Officer
USS BASTET
M13-B038: USS BASTET: A'Janni: 35013.1245 ("Huddle")
"Huddle"
[previous (ANU) "Observations" / (BAS) "Fitting In"]

[/\]

Setting: EAGLE-5, Aft Section
Stardate: 35012.1245
A'Janni sat cross-legged with Zub next to him sitting on his scaly rear-end allowing the towering reptilian to use his knees as a kind of shelf to rest his arms upon.  In front of them was Ya'Han who was on her knees in an effort to match the height of her fellow teammates.  At 5'6" the Nylaan could not hope to compete against the Caitian's 6'4" nor the Voth's 7'0" even when they were sitting down as far as they could. Still, the woman with the fiery hair did not appear intimidated by the size difference, a simple fact that pleased the FCO.

The Caitian did not know a lot about the Nylaan but there was a regal strength about her, something that he could not help compare to another, smaller female who commanded respect wherever she went. Sheetora and Ya'Han looked nothing alike, but once he saw beyond the lack of surface resemblance, A'Janni could see an increasing number of matching characteristics. Both possessed an impressive inner strength which they used to command others, not in the way a military general would order troops, but more as a caring sovereign would their subjects.

As rough as Ya'Han might have come across back in the shuttle bay, A'Janni understood what she was trying to do. Her teammates were not some simple muscle-bound assets to be used and discarded, they were members of *her* team and she would make sure that they returned from this mission safe and sound. Thanks to his dealing with the Kzinti, the Caitain had experienced some of the uncaring methods used by those from KZINTI BETA, and he was pleasantly surprised to see that this was not the way of the inhabitants of KZINTI ALPHA.

The three members of the Arena team shared an extended moment of silence which they used as a means of self-reflection. Their mission to SPACE STATION NOWHERE would most certainly not be an easy one, that much they all agreed on. There were just too many unknowns, too many variables to be certain of anything, but that could not stop them from going after Gemma.  Both Zub and A'Janni considered the ILO as someone special, granted for completely different reasons, but that was enough to have them sitting there ready to do whatever it took to see the mission completed successfully.

Looking at Ya'Han, A'Janni noticed a gradual change in the color of the woman's hair. From the near solid bright red the Nylaan's hair had grown darker.  This piqued the Caitian's curiosity and since there was little else to do at the moment, he decided to inquire. "Excuse me, Lieutenant. Is the changing of your hair color natural?"

Ya'Han sighed as she smiled. "Natural and unfortunately unconscious more often than I would like it to be."

"Very interesting," the Caitian said. "I guess it is very similar to what he does, but with his scales," A'Janni said nudging the Voth sitting next to him.

"The color of a Nylaan's hair represents their position they have earned in our society," Ya'Han explained. Although she suspected that they might already know this, she found herself in the mood to share, something that was rather uncommon for her about this particular subject matter. "Black is the color of the commoners, those who are nothing as compared to the others. Red represents those who have earned the right to be part of the military, having shown their skills in combat."

"That explains the military command impression I was getting from you," the Caitain said.

"Actually, I never served in the military of my world," Ya'Han admitted. "It would have been improper for someone like me to serve."

"Someone like you?"

Ya'Han closed her eyes for a brief moment when she reopened them her hair was the color that only those of her bloodline could summon and display. It was the color of royalty, the color that the daughter of the High Sovereign, the color that she had decided to separate herself from. The purple meant nothing to her now as it was only a reminder of a life that she had long left behind, a life that she wanted to forget.

[/\]

Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant JG A'Janni [Access Character BIO for A'Janni]
Flight Control Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977
M17-A040: USS ANUBIS: Stark: 35013.1250 ("Huddle. Part 2")
"Huddle, Part 2"
[previous (ANU) "Observation" / (BAS) "Huddle"]

[/\]

Setting: EAGLE-5 Aft, Section
Stardate: 35013.1250

He was too far to hear what was being said, but Jayson could most certainly see the change in her hair color. That by itself was not all that surprising as Ya'Han had a bad habit of letting her emotions dictate what color her hair would be, but to see her openly show the color of her family's position was more than unexpected. Actually, it was downright shocking. What could she had been thinking or feeling while chatting with the overgrown cat and lizard to make her hair turn purple? What could either one of them have said to her to make the Nylaan go against her near absolute loathing of what that specific hair color represented?

Jayson wanted to get up and go over to Ya'Han. He wasn't sure what he would say, but it would likely come out as a demand for an explanation. The OPS Officer quickly considered the possible outcomes of this course of action and decided to remain seated. She might have known A'Janni and Enel less than he did, but she had a way with people and it was evident that she had already earned the respect of the BASTET's FCO and Sec/Tac. Knowing the Caitian and Voth as he did, how little it might have been, Jayson knew that if things turned ugly, they would likely not hesitate to defend her, not that she needed it.

However hurt he might have been, there is no way he would want to put Ya'Han in a situation where she would need to defend herself, verbally or physically. It was a foregone conclusion that he would lose any physical confrontation and Jayson was relatively sure that the outcome of a verbal altercation would be identical.

"Purple?" Satella whispered ever so softly to no one in particular, the CMO noticing the same thing the OPS Officer had.

"That's a long story," Jayson dismissed forcing himself to look away from the Nylaan.

"Everything about her is a long story," Bruxa said in such a way that Stark was unsure if the Doctor had tried to be funny or if she had been completely serious.  "Whatever the story is though, I can tell that it has upset you. Even here, she manages to do things to hurt you." That last statement made Jayson understand that Satella was being as serious as she could be.

"It's not worth the time or effort," Jayson said turning to look at the CMO and catching a glimpse of Captain Iverson who appeared fixated on something.

"If it concerns you, be it good or bad, it is well worth whatever time I have," the CMO said before noticing that the OPS Officer's attention was not on her but on the now blonde-haired Captain instead.

Jayson and Satella followed Selene's fixated gaze across the inside of the EAGLE-5 and through the forward windows which displayed the space station in all of its immensely dark majestic horror.  "That thing looks like something the Borg would have come up while stuck in the middle of a collective nightmare," the OPS Officer noted.

"Just wait until you get inside," Ya'Han added as everyone's attention turned onto the station they were approaching.

"Steady as she goes," Captain Iverson ordered. "We do not want to appear overly anxious in wanting to get on board that monstrous thing."

"Looking the way it does, I am surprised that anyone actually wants to go there," Stark said.

"And yet that is where Gemma is, and where we need to go to get her back," Selene said. "Alright everyone, whatever final preparations you want to do with your teams needs to happen now.  Once we are there, I doubt we will have time or opportunities to figure out what our plan of action needs to be."

Jayson glanced at Ya'Han who wasted no time to follow Captain Iverson's recommendation.  "Alright you two," Doctor Andersson said as she put her hands on the shoulders of the other CMO and OPS Officer. "We need to review what we are going to do once we get to that Zocalo. We need to be smart about how we proceed but above that, we have to make sure that we do not get separated. Staying together may be our one and only saving grace."

After hearing this, Satella reached for Jayson's arm and pulled it into a tight embrace, offering the man a caring smile as she looked up at him.

[/\]
Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant Jayson Stark [Access Character BIO for Jayson Stark]
Chief of Operations
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M13-B039: USS BASTET: Iverson: 35013.1320 ("The Arrival")
---
"The Arrival"
(Previous Post: (ANU) "Observation" / (BAS) "Huddle, Part 2")
---

Setting: EAGLE-5, Forward Section 
Stardate: 35013.1320

Everyone held their collective breaths as the EAGLE-5 entered and eventually made contact with the floor of the landing bay. Everything seemed to have gone according to plan, the odd-looking craft not raising any alarms by its return to the space station. In fact, Selene was more than a little suspicious by just how easy the whole thing had been.

"This is *not* a Federation starbase," Captain Morningstar said as if trying to reassure Iverson. "We both know how loose the docking protocols can be in places like this, and that is if there are any at all. This space station seems to be nothing more than a watering hole for the shadiest characters in the region."

"Some of the more remote outposts do operate with a more 'relaxed' approach, but I also know how some of the busier dark locations function," Selene countered. "This place is too big, too important to just be the type to let anyone walk in whenever they want. Plus, why would Fiona not warn the local authorities of our possible arrival? She knew that the EAGLE-5 was on board the BASTET, so she could have easily ensured that the ship was blackballed, or even worse, targeted to be destroyed on sight. I doubt she did not expect us not to come after Gemma."

"And you decided to share this only *now*?" Morningstar was visibly upset by the revelation. In hindsight, the Native American Captain should have known that this was a likely scenario, and it bothered him that he had not thought of it. The only explanation he could give himself for this lapse was that he had not been the one in charge and therefore had not given the situation all of the careful consideration and meticulous analysis that he now believed he should have.

"Relax," Selene said flicking her long blonde hair over her shoulder. "Commander Valentine and the rest of the BASTET's crew were ready to intervene should the need arise. We were never in any real danger, but I am still not liking the fact that we made it here without even a single raised eyebrow or question being asked." After meeting the gaze of Captain Morningstar for a few seconds, Captain Iverson addressed the gathering on board the EAGLE-5. "We have arrived. Let me remind you that we have two mission objectives. The first is to find and retrieve Lt. Gemma. Keep in mind that although she left the BASTET under the identity of Abrasivnyy, she is a highly trained Intel Operative who could change her looks and personality at any moment depending on the situation. The officer who know her understand what I am saying, so keep a sharp eye open. Our secondary objective is to find as much information on this Confederacy and figure out a way to undermine their plans. As of right now, there are no indications that these two objectives overlap in any way meaning that we will all be pulling double duty.  Team leaders; get your groups ready. We will be exiting the ship one group at a time with another group following only after the first has made it through the security checkpoint.  Any questions?"

"What are we supposed to do if we find Miss Abrasivnyy?" The Shillian scientist inquired.

"The crew members of the BASTET were injected earlier with a sub-dermal communicator that transmits on an encoded frequency that only we can pick up," Doctor Andersson explained. "Just relay your location to the others and if you need any assistance."

"How we proceed will depend heavily on which personality Gemma is found using at that time," Captain Iverson added. "Since we have no idea of what kind of influence or even control my dimensional twin has on her, so it will be prudent to exercise extreme caution as we move in."

"If I may?" The First Officer and Intel Operative of the USS ANUBIS interjected. "I would like to offer myself as the one to make contact when she is found. I might be able to get through to her as I understand her way of thinking better than most, at least as a fellow operative. Also, my being able to scan her immediate memories would give me an edge in figuring out what happened and if someone is truly controlling her."

"Thank you for your offer Commander," Selene acknowledged. "If everyone is ready, I think Captain Morningstar should take his team out first.  I believe that Lieutenant Ya'Han in her role as 'The Agent' Han is best suited to test the waters as they say."

"Having the two of us next to her is not going to hurt either," A'Janni grinned as he nudged his friend the Voth Chief of Security.  The Nylaan took a moment to make sure that her hair was the appropriate colour for her to be accepted as her dimensional counterpart before making her way out of the craft.

Everyone watched with trepidation as the trio exited the EAGLE-5 and made their way to the nearest security checkpoint as nonchalantly as possible given their surrounding and their own slightly out-of-place appearance. Judging by the expressions of surprise from those looking at them, it was a safe conclusion that none of them had ever seen the solid black-haired Agent accompanied by such a strange and impressive duo.

A silent sigh of relief was shared by all when the first team eventually made their way through the security checkpoint without any incident leaving the others to hope in the safe for them.

"All right, who is next?"

---
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) 
M17-A041: USS ANUBIS: Lopez: 35013.1345 ("Weak Knees")
-=-=-
"Weak Knees"
[Previous post: (ANU) "Huddle, Part 2" & (BAS) "The Arrival"]
-=-=-
 
Setting:  SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Arrival Security Checkpoint
Stardate: 35013.1345
 
Sonja was in the lead, closely followed by Adriana who was keeping her head down. The CEO needed to be recognized and accepted as Sonju, the station's 'Crown'.  As long as everyone else accepted her as such, there would be no trouble and no questions would be asked of those accompanying her. The CSciO of the BASTET was close behind the Junior Ambassador while Commander Shar'El brought up the rear, keeping a vigilant eye on everything.

Adriana could easily imagine that the ExO was using her telepathic skills to get a truthful gage as to the reaction of others. That did not bother the Hispanic woman, what did concern her was that the Commander might pick up on the memories Lopez was trying her best to keep out of her mind.  The distinct sounds of the people going about their routine on this station were more than enough to bring back haunting memories. The various stenches that assaulted her sense of smell only made things worse making it increasingly difficult for the Counselor/Junior Ambassador to put one foot in front of the other.

When the group came to a stop while Sonju dealt with the man guarding the security checkpoint, Adriana felt the supporting hands of Misaki on her right arm.  "We are almost through," the Asian said. Although there was no way for the CSciO to know what was happening with Lopez, Mitshiba's keen sense of observation made her realise that things were not as well as they should be with the woman who had been walking and stumbling before her.

"My sincerest apologies."

Whatever Sonja had said worked, granting the team unhindered access to the station. Adriana, with help from Misaki, followed but as soon as they walked right next to the security guard, the odor of the lower levels that clung to his clothes hit the veiled woman like a thousand photon torpedoes.

Within seconds Adriana felt two sets of hands take a hold of her before she could collapse onto the hard and cold plates of the station's deck. As much as she tried, Lopez could not control her body nor her mind, leading her to try and break free from the helping embraces that she was the target of. The memories of her incarceration and torture were just too strong causing her to consider only one course of action -- run!

"Is she alright?"

"MIND YOUR BUSINESS!"

"She will be fine, it is just her weak knees acting up again."

Adriana heard the voices, and she knew that the people to whom they belonged to were familiar but at this exact moment, the Counselor/Junior Ambassador could not put a name to them. Lopez knew that they were trying to help but that did little to stop her from wanting to run as fast and far as she could without ever looking back.

Just as she was about to push everyone away, or at the very least try, another tidal wave of memories came crashing down upon her, but for some reason, these did not make Adriana was to run, in fact, it was quite the contrary. The Counselor/Junior Ambassador found herself smiling, albeit very little, as she relived happier moments of her life, each happening in the frame of a single heartbeat. Her posting as CNS for the BASTET, her becoming good friends with Satella, Her becoming the Ambassador's protege and later receiving the appointment as Junior Ambassador.  All of those happy memories were scattered islands set on a sea of trouble, hardships and pain, but for some reason, the Hispanic woman could only recall the best moments of her life.

"See, she is doing better. Come, we have to get going. We are keeping this poor man from doing his job." This time Adriana clearly heard and identified the voice as being that of Misaki Mitshiba.

"You heard the lady, GET BACK TO WORK!" Those words belonged to Sonja, or as far as everyone else on the station was concerned, the order had been spoken by The Crown, so none dared to oppose or even question.

As soon as the team managed to reach a more secluded area, Adriana was allowed to sit while surrounded by the others who wanted to make sure that she was alright. Lopez looked up and smiled, the joy of the last set of memories she had relived still filling her with a sense of joy that she had almost forgotten she could experience.

"I am sorry, but I had no choice," Shar'El said in a whispered voice while looking straight at the sitting CNS. "We can talk later, but for now, you need to rest so that we can proceed with our mission."

Adriana understood what had taken place. In order to avoid Lopez from 'losing it' and exposing the team and possibly the whole undercover mission, Shar'El had invaded her mind and forced the happiest memories she could find to the surface thus changing her focus onto something more pleasant. The Ullian had not had the opportunity to ask for permission to do this, not that there had been any chance to do so. The Commander had to act quickly and she did, saving the team from possibly being exposed. The price of that though was that the Ullian had likely come across several memories that the Hispanic woman would have preferred remained unknown.

Faced with this realization, Adriana let the full weight of her body press against the wall that she had been made to sit against. Even if she had wanted to get up allowing the team to resume their travels, the CNS/Junior Ambassador would have been unable to do so, her knees, as Misaki had claimed not so long ago, being far too weak to support her at this time.

-=-=-
Marissa Montonera-Lombardi
 
Lieutenant JG Adriana Lopez [Access Character BIO for Adriana Lopez]
Ship's Counselor & Junior Ambassador
USS ANUBIS
M17-A042: USS ANUBIS: Morningstar-Bonviva: 35013.1350
("Promises Made, Promises Kept")
##########
"Promises Made, Promises Kept"
Previous posts (ANU) "Weak Knees" / (BAS) "The Arrival"
##########

"Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength."
- Arnold Schwarzenegger

-==/\==--
Setting: SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Landing Bay
Stardate: 35013.1350

The Native American thought it unwise for everyone to come out from the EAGLE-5 and head to the security checkpoint following the same path. Maybe it was the tracker in him or just paranoia, but Erik wanted to avoid making things more dangerous than they needed to be. So, as soon as Sonja and her team had gone, Morningstar took his team out and directed them to one side, allowing them to make a quiet detour around a few of the crafts that were on the large and yet very crowded landing bay.

As they made their way through the seemingly endless sets of small crafts and various cargo crates being loaded and unloaded, Erik noticed that Xana's attention was kept on the preceding team. It was easy to see and understand that the Ambassador was concerned for the wellbeing of the Junior Ambassador. Of all those who had come to this place before, Adriana was by far the one who had endured the most, and it was perfectly understandable that this caused those who cared about her to be that much more concerned.

When the team led by Lt. Cmdr. Paquette reached the security checkpoint, Morningstar and his team came to a stop and watched from the relative security of the far side of a set of crates. There were easily 30 or so meters separating the two teams, not to mention a varying number of travellers passing between them, but even with all that both Erik and Xana could see that Adriana was not doing well.

"I knew that this would happen," the Bolian/Human woman said with a heavy sigh.  "I should have opposed her more than I did when she said she wanted to be here."

"She wanted to help, just like we all do," the Native American countered with. "Plus, she is not alone.  Shar'El, Sonja and Misaki will make sure that nothing happens to her."

"I am not worried what might happen *to* her," the azure woman corrected. "I am concerned about what she might *do*. Look, you can see the fear in her eyes."

"Xana? Unless you have some sort of x-ray vision I am unaware of, you cannot see her eyes from here."

"Fine," the Ambassador snapped. "Look at the way she is struggling to walk. Look at the way she is holding herself, the clearly hunched over posture indicates a massive lack of confidence. She is scared... no terrified, and I don't need to *see* her eyes to know that I am right."

The two of them glared at each other before turning their eyes back to Adriana.  “What then would you have proposed?” Erik asked. 

Xana swallowed the lump in her throat; that was the million credit question.  She hadn’t been able to convince Adriana not to come.  Morningstar trusted his crew, saving his use of orders for when it mattered.  Truthfully the more people they had on this station who had knowledge of the station and its people; the better their chances.  Both of them knew this.  

“You know as well as I do what we need to do,” Morningstar said.

“Gemma and the Confederacy,” Xana nodded weakly.  Tilting her head to the side she said, “And they will not bargain.  There is no negotiation, at least not at the outset.  I’m not sure what we’d have to do to bring them to the table.”

Adriana in the distance stumbled but shook off the assistance of those around her, much like a drunk who refuses to admit they had too much.  Her hair flew around as she whipped around to stare at those around her; the color high on her cheeks.  It was clear that the Counselor and Junior Ambassador, who was gesturing at something, was not happy about something.  

The Ambassador opened her mouth and closed several times, as if a miasma was enveloping her.  No noise came out, but the words were choking her all the same. 

“All she wanted was to find her sister,” Xana murmured finally.

Morningstar looked at the Ambassador.  “We are *not* losing Adriana.”

“You can’t make that promise,” Xana said, turning her head towards him.  Her voice, while soft, cracked with emotion.  “I can’t make that promise.”  

Morningstar looked over at Lopez who was finally moving on with the rest of her team.  “No, we can’t make that promise.” With that said and seeing that it was his team's turn to make it to the security checkpoint, the Native American motioned for the others to start moving. Xana would have a few minutes to get into the mindset of her counterpart from this dimension, and Erik did not doubt for an instant that she would be able to do so long before then.

--==(/\)==--
Francois Charette

Commanding Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC 18501

AND

Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA

With the generous and delightful assistance of

Sarah Albertini-Bond
USS ANUBIS
M13-B040: USS BASTET: Enel: 35013.1325 ("Tea For Two")
=-=
“Tea For Two”
Previous posts: (ANU) "Promises Made, Promises Kept" by Francois / (BAS) "The Arrival” by Jessica

=-=
Setting: SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Near the Battle Dome
Stardate: 35013.1325

For a short female, trailed ever so slightly by two males well over 2 meters tall, Ya’Han set a blistering pace down the crowded corridors leading to the Dome. Over the heads of station denizens, A’Janni heard muffled shouts, cheers and thundering feet on metal bleachers. Zub Enel held his breath against sections that stank of mold, sewage or garbage. 

A’Janni noticed the Nylaan had transformed the color of her swaying, waist-length hair to coal black. She had said this color mimicked someone important named Han; someone important enough to open doors and loosen tongues. 

The corridor widened so people rushing forward could spread out. A soaring metallic ceiling met in pointed arches like above a cathedral nave. The steely girders and sheathing reflected the excited chatter of the throng beneath. 

Zub Enel, his scaly, crested head a good half meter above everyone else, could hear chanting up ahead from the Dome. This roar was not the rhythmic chant of religion. It was the guttural chant of rising impatience. Sharp cries and querulous shouts accompanied the chant.

Big display panels hung angled from the girders. Scores and names ticked by in every imaginable language and script. Rhythmic clapping had joined the chant. Both picked up speed. People around the three undercover Federation officers began to run forward. 

Ya’Han made a sudden turn off of the main corridor. She adroitly dodged a collision with someone rushing toward the Dome. A’Janni, his fur on end and single white eye opened wide, simply stuck out his clawed hand in a stop signal. The crowd flowed around him and Zub. 

Ya’Han strode to a closed door that had in several languages in red lettering:

PROCUREMENT
KEEP OUT OR DIE

She slapped the door trigger and stepped through the moment it slid wide enough for her slender, athletic frame. A’Janni and Zub had to wait to follow.

A cramped office festooned with displays on the desk, the rusted walls, and corroded ceiling. A Ferengi female in a thin, floral robe and dangling pearl and gold earrings rapidly tapped at the screens with knobby fingers. Her whisky baritone signaled impatience. “Not now!” From under a fleshy brow ridge she focused smallish blue eyes on Ya’Han. Her scowl became a wide shark-toothed smile. “Ah! It’s you, dear.”

Ya’Han startled to be so unexpectedly close to a Ferengi. Betrothed as an underaged teen to Daimon Ardax, a wealthy Ferengi merchant, she was so repulsed that she escaped her royal palace and never returned.

The Ferengi’s scowl returned. Her gaze drifted to Ya’Han’s hair. Ya’Han realized her surprise had changed it to flaming red. She willed it black.

The Ferengi grumped, “Do you have *any* idea how sucking BUSY I am?” 

Ya’Han made sure her voice was dead calm. “I am looking for Abrasivnyy.”

The Ferengi female’s gaze assessed A’Janni and Zub. “Exotic muscle you have there, sweetie.” She addressed them directly, “Whatever she is paying you, I will triple.”

A male spoke from the display on her desk. =/\= T, they’re gnawing through the girders. Let me start! =/\=

T sighed so dryly it sounded like her death rattle. She addressed Ya’Han. “The worst supply ever, pet! I don’t have enough animals or debt dodgers or fighters for one show!”

The office walls pulsed as the crowd chanted a deep “Hoo Hoo Ha!” The desk display spoke again. =/\= T? =/\=

“Do Save The Virgin. Only one virgin, one beast and one fighter.” 

T’s gaze sized up the Caitian and Voth. “You two want in? We desperately need fighters.”

Ya’Han slapped hard on the desk. “Abrasivnyy!”

T squinted. Her grin skewed a bit. “Pretty? White hair? Honey drips from her bee-stung lips?” 

“That’s her.”

The resonant voice from the desk display penetrated indistinctly through the walls. The room shook from thunderous cheers.

T’s gaze returned to the BASTET’s Flight Control Officer and Security Chief. “Ten times what she’s paying.”

A’Janni shook his one-eyed tiger-y head. The scaly Voth said haltingly, “I fight. Only for. Han.” 

T’s face colored like she’d been pummeled with over-ripe plums. She asked Ya’Han, “Why should I help find this Abrasivnyy?”

“Do you enjoy your work here?”

The Ferengi sobered. “Try the pens and the lockers. She prowls there sometimes. Who knows why.” T gave the two males a sly smile. “Last chance on that offer.” When they didn’t respond, she said. “Get out. I have a show to save.”

The trio returned to an almost deserted corridor. The whole structure trembled with pounding fists and feet. There was a powerful roar from the throat of something gigantic and angry.

“One of your relatives?” A’Janni asked Zub before being drowned out by cheers.

Six massively built males in gladiatorial body armor ambled away from the Dome with large rifles over their shoulders. Their gaze was centered on the three undercover officers. Ya’Han said, “This does not look good.”

Zub made fists. “We are an odd sight, even here. Besides, they may know Abrasivnyy.”

A’Janni flexed his claws. “Ever hopeful, eh Zub?”

Ya’Han angled across the wide cathedral-vaulted corridor away from the armed males. Zub and A’Janni moved in between to screen her. She said, “If they try two-on-one, we will prevail.”

The reptilian roar became cries of pain. The roaring crowd’s stomping feet set the corridor clattering. The big display screens swayed. The gang of six changed their angle to intercept the trio. The rifles they leaned back ever so causally against their broad shoulders were encrusted with electronics.

Ya’Han and her junior officers halted. The six men formed half an arc well out of arms reach. They aimed rifles, two per officer. Ya’Han snorted derisively.

A bald man with a scarred cheek said in an accent, “We separate brain from brawn.”

The three Federation officers took up fighting stances.

Scarface kept his gaze on Ya’Han. “Want men. You go away.”

Ya’Han asked, “Do you know who I am?”

“First to die. We take men. You go. Or die now.” None of the men leaned in so Ya’Han, A’Janni or Zub could grab a rifle. 

Ya’Han glowered at Scarface. “Listen… “

“Count to three. Then boom! One. Two….”

Ya’Han raised her hands palms out. “Take the men!”

Scarface grinned. “T happy, we happy.”

“T is behind this?”

“You ask her. Go.”

The announcer’s voice echoed down the corridor. “Are you ready to THU-U-U-U-U-U-U-U-U-U-UNDER?!” Like a thousand impact hammers triggered simultaneously, the station’s aging metal plates thumped so loudly they threatened to collapse. 

As Ya’Han stepped away, three rifles each pointed at Zub and A’Janni. Scarface said to them, “Hurry. Fight wild animals! Fun!”

Ya’Han, momentarily thwarted, watched her team being led away at gunpoint toward the Dome. 

=-=
David Michael Inverso

Chief Security and Tactical Officer
USS BASTET, NCC 74977

“There are those who love to get dirty and fix things. They drink coffee at dawn, beer after work. And those who stay clean, just appreciate things. At breakfast they have milk and juice at night. There are those who do both, they drink tea.”
– Gary Snyder
M17-A043: USS ANUBIS: Bruxa: 35013.1425 ("Personal Space")
=-=
"Personal Space"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Promises Made, Promises Kept" by Francois & Sarah/ (BAS) "Tea For Two" by David]
=-=
 
Setting: SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Corridor
Stardate: 35013.1425

All the teams were in. No major problems were encountered as they crossed the security checkpoint. Now they could spread out and head for their respective search areas. The first obstacle to being able to accomplish this though was the crowd.  If the general darkness of the corridors was not bad enough, the density of people made things even more uncomfortable.

It was a struggle for the team to remain together. No one seemed to care about anyone else. All they wanted was to get from where they had been to where they were going. Doctor Bruxa did not have a problem with this. As much as she enjoyed the limits of her personal space, she could accept what was happening. After all, it was a required necessity for them to find Gemma.

Without warning or apology, Stark was shoved to one side by a rushing individual. "Maybe we should get off this level?" Jayson suggested rubbing his bruised shoulder.

Captain Iverson scanned their surroundings. "I think I see some lifts over there." The now blonde-hair woman was not used to being in such a crowded setting. Everyone could see that she was just as anxious to get out of this crowd. It took some effort but the team finally made it to the area pointed out by Selene. The destination proving to be much further than initially anticipated.

The lift moving people from one level to another were far and few in between. This forced those wanting to use them to wait and risk to be crushed by the crowd. Once the doors opened, the pods would quickly fill beyond what logic dictated should be a safe maximum. So, to avoid any problems, Captain Iverson opted to lead her team through a more scenic route of maze-like corridors. Their only clues that they were heading in the right direction were arrows with what appeared to be shops drawn on them.

"Are we there yet?" Sofia asked, instantly drawing glares from the others. To say that this space station was huge would be a drastic understatement. NEW ALEXANDRIA had nothing on this place. Thanks to its dark exterior color, it had been nearly impossible to properly gauge the structure's size. Once inside, one could only guess as to how immense it truly was. The number of people encountered at every corner did not make things any easier.

Satella suddenly jumped and screamed as she felt a hand inappropriately touching her. For a split second, the CMO almost hoped that the responsible party was Jayson. The look of shock and surprise on his face indicated otherwise though. Stark quickly scanned their surroundings. It only took a second for him to identify the culprit. A shady looking man whose appearance could melt Ablative Armor.

When she met the man's unevenly levelled eyes, Bruxa knew exactly what he was thinking. The unsavory way he was disrobing her with his eyes was sickening. Now she had to quickly figure out what kind of place this was. Would he stand down if she made it clear that she was not interested? Would he apologise, claiming that this was all a misunderstanding? The more Satella thought about it, the more she figured that this was not that kind of place. The station's culture seemed to balance on the delicate edge of anarchy. People here likely responded only to one thing -- strength.

Satella felt guilt and concern the moment her hand struct the man's cheek. She questioned if her oath to do no harm applied in this situation. The Doctor had not injured him, but she did inflict a visible level of discomfort. What worried the CMO, even more, was how quickly the man's expression turned into boiling rage.

The man's closed fist was already well over his shoulder by the time Satella realized what was happening. There was no room for her to move out of the way. There were just too many people around. The best she could hope for was to deflect the punch.  Like a knight rushing in to the rescue, Jayson stepped between them. His repeated training with the Chief of Security had paid off. He easily blocked the punch and countered with one of his own. The sound of what appeared to be a breaking jaw bone filled the area.

The man with his uneven eyes glared from the ground. "You are going to pay for that," he slurred. A quick taste of the black liquid spilling from the corner of her jaw made him realise that he was hurt. The fact that he could barely talk confirmed the extent of his injury. Understanding that he did not have the advantage, the assailant withdrew, quickly vanishing into the crowd.

Jayson turned to check on Satella who promptly thanked him with a smile. "Are you alright?" He asked.

"I am, thanks to you," Satella said.

"That was very brave of you," Sofia added.

"We better keep on moving," the Captain said bringing everyone back on track. "Luckily, it would seem that this little altercation was not noticed by anyone. Still, it would be best if we put as much space between us and this location."

=-=
Setting: SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Corridor
Stardate: 35013.1435

Trying to protect his jaw and keep from bleeding everywhere, the man forged his way through the crowd. Blinded by the pain he was experiencing, he failed to see someone standing directly in front of him as he turned a corner. Terror filled his eyes as he looked at who he had just run into.

"I'm sorry," he barely managed to say at the petite 5'0" woman who scowled at him.

"Give me one reason why I should not kill you?"

"I didn't mean it. It was an accident." Despite the discomfort, he spoke as fast as he could. The pain would be a small price to pay for his life.

"What are you mumbling about you sorry excuse for a life form?"

"Please forgive me. Your man hurt me. Is that not punishment enough?"

"Either you start making sense or you will find yourself cleaning the outside of the station. Without a suit!" The hold she took on his throat made one thing clear. Either he talked or he died. 

With black blood dripping on her arm, he tried his best to explain himself. "Your silver hair. Your petite figure. I only wanted to show my admiration."

"You wanted to show *me* your admiration?" Something didn't make sense. "When was this?"

"Just now. Please. Forgive me. I never do that again. Promise."

She released her hold on his throat. Even before he could fill his lungs with air, the man was running away. She could have easily killed him, but now she had something more interesting to deal with. She made her way into the main corridor and found something to stand on. Now she could see the majority of the crowd. More importantly, she could see *her*.

Stepping down from the display, she cleaned the dark blood from her arm. She then reached for what appeared to be some sort of communication device. "Stella to Hel."

=/\= What? =/\=

"They are here," the Executioner announced.

=/\= Are you sure? =/\=

"Do you have anyone way to explain why there is another me here?"

=/\= How many and where are they heading? =/\=

"Looked like a group of four. Heading for the Zocalo."

=/\= Keep an eye on them. I should have known that Fiona was not going to be my only problem today. =/\=

=-=
Rachel Jackie Johnson

Lieutenant JG Satella Bruxa [Access Character BIO for Satella Bruxa]
Chief Medical Officer
USS ANUBIS

[Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint. - Mark Twain]
M17-A044: USS ANUBIS: Ya'Han: 35013.1445 ("Battle For Life and Death")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Battle For Life and Death"
[previous post were (ANU) "Personal Space" / (BAS) "Tea For Two"]
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]

Setting: SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Near the Battle Dome  
Stardate: 35013.1445

The last time she was here on this station, it was her who found herself fighting for her life in the arena. As unpleasant as the experience was, it showed her that someone with the proper combat training could survive the experience. Ya'Han was still as concerned as could be for the wellbeing of the other members of her team, but she felt a slight bit of relief in the knowledge that not only were they both highly trained warriors but that they also had each other to rely on.  The black-haired Nylaan carefully weighed the various points of this situation and concluded that this might play in their favor. With Zub and A'Janni keeping the crowd busy by offering them something that they had never seen before, she would have some time to push toward their mission objective.  All she needed to do was to keep her mind and emotions on point. The Sec/Tac could not risk someone discovering that she was not who she claimed to be, through her suddenly becoming a redhead for example, as it could jeopardize their mission as well as the lives of everyone else who had come to this place from the BASTET.

Ya'Han did her best to ignore the cheering and sounds of battle coming through the walls from the Arena.  As disturbing as these could be, they were also strangely reassuring. As long as the crowd was cheering, it meant that the entertainment was proceeding as planned, which meant that both the Voth and Caitian were still alive and fighting. At least that was the reasoning the Nylaan was using to convince herself that all was well with her fellow teammates.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]  
Setting: SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Battle Dome, Spectator area
Stardate: 35013.1500

The black-haired Nylaan eventually found her way to the spectator area which surrounded the arena. The step-like seats surrounded the dome cage under with all sorts of beings fought for the entertainment and delight of the crowd. Standing as close to the metal web that formed the dome of the arena, with her back to the action, Ya'Han could easily scan the cheering crowd in search of Fiona and Abrasivnyy.

It would have been nice if the house lights had been on, but that might have played against her as she scrutinized the crowd. So she needed to make the best use of whatever slight illumination made its way out of the arena from the targeted spotlights aimed at the combatant. At least this way, the crowd was much less likely to be aware of someone searching through them as they cheered and screamed at those fighting for their lives.

Ya'Han's attention was suddenly diverted away from her search when she heard the heart-stopping sound of bones being crushed. The shiver-inducing eerie sound was unmistakable and caused the greater majority of the crowd to instantly go silent. A sense of horror filled the Nylaan as she took in the scene near the center of the arena has it stood; frozen in time and dread. The only element able to transcend this image locked between heartbeats was the slowly growing pool of blood coming from the creature's fang-filled jaw.

The hulkish lizard-man stood over the lifeless body of the furry beast, looking down at it as if expecting it to jump back onto its four short, stubby legs, each nearly the size of his own body. The Sec/Tac quickly scanned the rest of the arena with the hopes of finding the other half of the fighting duo, but to no avail. That was when she carefully focused her gaze onto the creature's head to take note of a set of furry arms wrapped around the beast's neck.  "A'Janni!" Ya'Han gasped in horror, unable to imagine how the BASTET's FCO could be both in such a position and alive all at the same time.

=/\= Now that is what I call a fight! =/\= The arena announcer said, causing the crowd to resume its cheering.  With the battle over, and her concerns clearly on something other than finding Abrasivnyy or Fiona, Ya'Han rushed back to the preparation area, each running step she took echoing her hope that the Caitian had not met his end.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Setting: SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Care Ward
Stardate: 35013.1520

The Nylaan came to a complete stop as she crossed the opened doorway. The shock of what she saw made her take a step back and confirm that this is where she wanted to be. Yes, this was the Care Ward, the place where injured combatants came to have their injuries looked at, but such a claim was beyond exaggerated.

The room was filthy and smelled like a slaughterhouse. The floor was covered with various blood stains, some old and dried while others were visible fresh judging by the way the ceiling lights reflected off them. There were dozens of combatants scattered about, some standing, barely, others lying on whatever flat surface they could find. All of them appeared as if they had been on the wrong side of a war with odds of a thousand to one against. It took Ya'Han several scans of the room before she finally found what she had been looking for, or more accurately who."

As she made her way to the Voth who was leaning over the Caitian, the Nylaan noticed that Enel was not paying attention to anything or anyone else but A'Janni. That proved to be more than enough to cause a lump to form in Ya'Han's throat making it nearly impossible for her to swallow or even breathe.

When she finally came to stand next to the other two members of her team, Zub glanced up at Ya'Han. "Your hair," he whispered making the Nylaan realize that once again she had failed to control her emotions and allowed her hair color to reflect the needs of the moment. It took only a few seconds for the solid black hair to replace the pure snow-white color of her medical training.

"Is he dead?" She asked, inwardly wishing that they were on the ANUBIS or BASTET were an emergency medical team could be summoned.

"I guess it is true," Enel whispered. "Cats to have seven lives."

"*Nine* lives," A'Janni corrected with a moan of pain. "The Terran expression is that cats have *nine* lives."

"After what you just went through, I would not be surprised if you had lost two of them in a single shot," the reptilian said, trying as best he could to make light of the dire situation.

Ya'Han was about to say something when a voice very similar to her own was heard coming from the entrance to the Care Ward. "I can't believe you came back. Hel said that you would, but to be perfectly honest, I didn't believe you were that stupid.  When I got the call that someone 'weird' was here, I thought that it might have been that loudmouthed Abrasivnyy, but instead of her I find you here with, well with whatever those two pets of yours are."

"They are under my protection," Ya'Han said, this time purposely changing her hair color to reflect her full readiness to fight.

"Spare me the 'you will have to get through me first'," Han sighed with discontent. "You may be better trained than I am, but I am the Agent here on this station, and that means that I am *never* alone."  With a motion of her head, the black-haired Nylaan under the employ of Hel ordered two of the combatants in the room to attack.

Zub Enel quickly intercepted one of the attackers while the other managed to take a solid hold of Ya'Han. His strength was much greater than the Nylaan could have expected it to be making it much more difficult for her to position herself to escape his death grip.

"I'm sorry Ya'Han," Han said in a sing-song voice. "There is only room enough for one Nylaan on this station."

The Sec/Tac felt her strength and consciousness slipping as the fighter's hold on her neck grew increasingly tight. Just as she was about to faint, the hold was suddenly released. Ya'Han turned to see A'Janni pulling his claws out from the man's back.

"Thank you," she said looking straight at the Caitian's one eye. "You saved my life."

"Don't thank me yet," A'Janni said, clearly struggling as he walked. "We still need to help..."

"Help who?" The Voth asked while standing over the body of the fighter sent against him which was now face-first on the floor.

"Never mind," the Caitain grinned as he turned to look at Ya'Han once again, the Nylaan having turned her attention to the room's entrance where she expected to see Han standing there, but to her surprise, no one was there.  "So, when is the fun starting?" A'Janni asked, trying his best to stand fully upright. 

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Hanali Han

Chief of Security / Chief Tactical Officer
USS ANUBIS, NCC-18501
M13-B041: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: 35013.1500 ("Something Different")
"Something Different"
Previous posts: (ANU) "Battle For Life and Death" & (BAS) "Tea For Two"

///^\\\  
Setting: SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Corridor -> The Oasis
Stardate: 35013.1500

Led by Lt. Cmdr. Paquette who had taken on the identity of her dimensional alter-ego, the team tasked with venturing deeper into the space station did just that. The journey proved to be far easier than anyone could have expected it to be as no one dared to stand in the way of Sonju, a noticeably feared woman who was better known by her title of 'The Crown'.

Aki noted that, on repeated occasions, someone had wanted to intercept the group and investigate as to the reason why they were in this part of the station. Upon identifying the woman in the lead though, every single one of them quickly turned on their heels and made a hasty exit, finding shelter behind the first thing they could reach.

"This Sonju person must be quite the individual for enlisting such fear in others," the Asian CSciO whispered to the rest of her team.

Adriana did not look in Aki's direction as she offered her thoughts. "Fear is the instrument of the weak. It is used by those who cannot deal with someone offering an intelligent argument. Take away their ability to instil this fear in others, and they end up being nothing more than cowards."

"With all due respect," Sonja said. "I doubt that she is a coward. If she and I share anything more than our appearance, I can pretty much guarantee that she is not the type to rely on fear to control those around her.  I would be more inclined to believe that fear is a by-product of how she likes to stay in control."

Aki instantly regretted saying what she did. The last thing she wanted to do was to start an argument between the members of her team. All Mitshiba wanted to do was to try and start up a conversation, to make herself feel like a little more a part of the group which was all members of the ANUBIS' crew except for her.

"Don't mind them," Cmdr. Shar'El said from the back of the group. "This is not an argument, just a friendly exchange of opinion. Speaking of opinion, I would like to know what you make of that?"

It took a few seconds for Misaki to pinpoint what Shar'El was talking about. Down the corridor, at least another 50 or so meters ahead of them, was a large set of open doors that appeared to give onto a grass-covered setting. The bright light which almost seemed natural that escaped through the opening was a huge contrast to the darker colors of the walls leading there. Seeing as little as she did of what was beyond the open doorway, partially thanks to the brightness, the Asian CSciO could only offer a guess. Her guess would be an educated one but it would remain a guess nonetheless. "An arboretum? Maybe it is the oxygen reclamation section of this station. Given the gigantic size of this station, there would be a drastic need for several of those scattered all over to supplement whatever central system they have if they have one at all."

Not having anywhere better to go at this time, the group decided to investigate the unexpected discovery. The closer they got to the opened doorway, the more they were forced to squint because their eyes had adapted to the lower ambient lighting found everywhere else throughout the station.  As they stepped through the doorway, the team found w natural landscape that could only be described as heavenly. Lush vegetation extended for as far as the eyes could see.

"No," Aki said. "This is definitively not an oxygen reclamation space. The vegetation is too far apart from the rest to be effective. This place would have to be some sort of recreational area, a park maybe?"

"Who would want to build a park in a hell like this?" Adriana hissed. Her earlier experiences while aboard this station had, for obvious reasons, tainted her perception of what should be part of this huge habitat floating in the dark emptiness of space.

"There are several reasons as to why such a setting would be constructed," Aki replied, the Asian being forever the scientist. "The plants selected could yield clues as to what this area was many for, but I believe that those structures over there might provide us with even more information." The CSciO pointed to what appeared to be strange crystalline shapes scattered about. As first Mitshiba believed them to be statues, but as they approached one, she quickly realized that the large crystals were nothing more than oddly shaped forms.

"Whatever those things are, they generate energy," the CEO said having extended her hand towards the structure without actually making contact.  "The tinkling sensation is reminiscent of a high phased polarised field, although I have no idea what such a field would be used for in a place like this."

"There are several more such crystals over there," Aki pointed out, the similar structures standing between 100 and 150 meters away from their current location.  Looking up at the ceiling, the SCiO added. "Did you notice that the sun-like light of this room originates from other crystals, those one fixed to the ceiling of this place.  By the looks of things, I would be almost willing to venture that the whole of the BASTET would fit in here."

"I am not sure about that," Sonja said. "I do agree that this place is huge, but all of this could be nothing more than an illusion, a visual trick of some sort. it could even be a simple holodeck program meant to recreate whatever this place is meant to be. It would explain the different style of architecture between what is out there and what is in here.

"I assure you," a voice coming from being them said. "All of this is as real as you and me."  The group turned and did their best to deal with their surprise when their eyes fell onto the form of Doctor Andersson, or more accurately her gender opposite alter-ego from this dimension.  "Allow me to introduce myself, I am Safio, 'The Guardian'."

///^\\\
Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant Misaki 'Aki' Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
USS BASTET - NCC 74977
M17-A045: USS ANUBIS: Maya: 35013.1510 ("A Stab in the Dark")
---
"A Stab in the Dark"
(Previous Posts: (ANU) "Battle For Life And Death" / (BAS) "Something Different")
---

Setting:  SPACE STATION NOWHERE, Lower Levels    
Stardate: 35013.1510

The main public areas and corridors of SPACE STATION NOWHERE were packed with people, so much so that it was sometimes impossible for someone to make it from point A to point B without having to fight their way through.  The lower levels of the same space station were a drastic contrast to this as the barely lit corridors were as empty as could be.

"Someone could get lost in this maze," the Joint Trill said, unable to recall anything remotely similar to this despite her having access to four lifetimes of memories. "I feel like I am stuck in one of the games my son Nate used to play on his PADD.  I never saw the appeal of the game then, and I certainly do not see it now."

"Unfortunately," Xana offered. "This is not a game, but as far as getting lost, I am relatively certain that we will find our way out.  All we have to do is follow Captain Morningstar."

Erik paused for a moment and looked back over his shoulder at the two talking ladies. "Are you making a slight at the fact that I am Native American?"

"I was merely pointing out that, historically speaking, your people have a strong reputation of being expert trackers. I was simply bestowing that envious skill onto you as a show of respect and admiration."

"Ambassador Bonviva, are you trying to seduce me?" Morningstar said in jest, the expression on his face leaving no doubts that he was entirely focused on completing their mission.

"Rule of Acquisition Number 33," the Bolian/Terran hybrid began with a grin. "It never hurts to suck up to the team leader," she said paraphrasing the well known and often used rule of the Ferengi.

"Captain, I think I might have found something," Maya said calling the attention of everyone onto her. Evidently, the Shillian scientist had not been paying attention to the conversation happening between Captain and Ambassador, but since both knew the kind of person she was, neither was surprised by this revelation.  The team followed Maya to what appeared to be a large lump set in the corner of the floor and wall. As they approached they encountered an overpowering stench, one that everyone easily recognized but for different reasons.

"How long have they been dead?" Dima asked turning her head away in an effort to reduce how much of the unsavoury odour she was being exposed to.

"It is very difficult to say," Maya replied as she knelt next to the oddly shaped lump in order to turn it onto its back. "The state of the body would indicate that she, and before you ask I know that these are the remains of a humanoid female due to the slender shape of the fingers, face and general bone structure, has been dead for about two to four days. This is without my taking into account that she bears an uncanny resemblance to the typical Orion slave girls from our own dimension.  On another but related matter, the odour of decomposition would indicate a much more distant time of death, likely in the range of several months, but I am unable to explain the discrepancy at this time. Maybe there is something about this dimension that causes decomposing matter to emit a more repugnant smell, or maybe the odour we are now forced to deal with is caused by something else. Given our current surroundings, it would be unlikely that she is the only thing to have died down here."

"It is too bad we could not have brought a tricorder," the Trill Counsellor noted.

"It was too risky to bring such equipment with us as the technology, which is alien to this world, might have been used to give away our presence and location," the Native American explained.  "Is there anything else you can tell us about her?" Erik pressed on as she looked down at the innocent-looking victim.

"I see no signs of external trauma which would indicate a struggle," the Shillian scientist added. "That said, I am relatively certain that I can identify the cause of death. The elongated tear in the front of her shirt would indicate that she was stabbed. Although I cannot confirm anything beyond my observations or an autopsy, it would appear that the single strike was swift and precise, likely aimed straight to her heart. Since the expression on her face appears to be one of surprise, I can only guess that her death was quick."

"I am liking this place less and less," Xana mumbled.

"It is too bad that Doctor Andersson is not part of this team," Nicole said with longing. "She could have performed a more complete medical examination, even without the use of a tricorder." The Trill glanced at the Bolian/Human and noticed a distinct expression of concern.  "Is everything alright?"

"I cannot be certain," Xanamused, "but since we came to this specific area, I felt as if things were somehow familiar. I believe that we are close to where Ya'Han, Sonja and I were informed of Adriana's location. If these remains are of the woman who helped us..."

"She paid the ultimate price for helping her," the Counsellor of the BASTET said finishing the sentence started by the Ambassador.

"Can you take us there?" Morningstar asked. "It might help both our mission and to better understand what Adriana endured if we could study where she was being held captive."

Reluctantly, Xana nodded her head and took point followed by the others who, with the exception of Captain Morningstar, appeared less than thrilled by the sequence of events they were in the middle of dealing with.

---
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)
M17-A046: USS ANUBIS: Shar'El: 35013.1515 ("Echoes of Memories")
=-=
"Echoes of Memories"
[the previous posts were (ANU) "A Stab in the Dark" by Jessica / (BAS) "Something Different" by Dawn]
=-=

Setting: SPACE STATION NOWHERE, The Oasis
Stardate: 35013.1515

The resemblance was uncanny despite the Guardian being the opposite gender to his dimensional counterpart. In another place and time, the two could have been thought of as fraternal twins but this was neither and the ExO / ILO knew, at least in the general sense, that there was no possible biological relationship between the two.  "Guardian?" Shar'El inquired. "Of this?" She added gesturing to the grandiose park they were in.

"Obviously, you are new here," Safio said, beaming a bright smile at his guests. "Although I could be considered the keeper of the Oasis, my title refers to my role towards these," he said pointing to the nearest crystal.

"You are the crystal guardian?" Sonja huffed trying her best not to laugh at the announcement. "What, you check for cracks?"

"The Crystals of Souls do not crack," the well kept blonde-haired man firmly stated in a voice that echoed a level of patience and calmness that was unexpected when taking into account that they were on a space station filled with the lowest of the low. "I am here to protect those who have come to reside here after their passing. Not all souls are deemed worthy, but those who do come here become my responsibility."

"Wait, what?" Mitshiba said, her curiosity piqued to the greatest possible level. "Are you trying to tell us that these crystals contain the life force of people who have died?"

"Please tell me that you do not believe in that kind of mumbo-jumbo?" Sonja sighed showing her disappointment.

"*You* believe in it," Shar'El immediately countered. "You keep referring to a specific ship that we both know as 'her' and I have seen you attribute feelings to it if not a soul.  If that does not make my point, then what about Ani? Is she not more than the sum of her parts?" The Commander had selected her words carefully to achieve what she wanted without revealing anything that Safio might grow suspicious of. "There is one more thing to keep in mind, we are as far away from where we started as we could be, so there are bound to be certain differences that we simply have to accept."

The redhead engineer wanted to argue with the raven-haired Commander, even if only for the fun of it, but this was not the place or time for that. They were on a mission and accomplishing the objectives of said mission needed to be their only priority. "Carry on," Sonja said as she motioned the BASTET's CSciO to continue with the discussion. The quicker it would end, the quicker they would be able to resume their search for clues as to the whereabouts of Fiona, Abrasivnyy and those in charge of carrying out the Confederacy's plan on this station.

Misaki did not need to be asked twice. "Tell me more about how the *souls* are selected? How are they brought into the crystals? Is the transfer permanent or is there a process by which the energy, I mean these *souls* are released into the universe?"

Shar'El took a more relaxed posture suspecting that this might take a few minutes. Diverting her attention away from 'the Guardian' and his new and overly eager student, the Commander noticed that Adriana had moved closer to the nearest crystal, something had caught her interest. The ExO / ILO was going to enquire as to what had happened but she decided to let the Counselor / Junior Ambassador go ahead without interference. Lopez had endured more than most could imagine during her earlier visit to this station, so it was nice for her to explore and find something that did not instantly remind her of the hell she had gone through.  After all, that was part of the reasoning of why she had been assigned to this team.

The ExO / ILO kept her ears on the explanation given as to the functioning of the crystals while she kept her eyes on the quiet investigation of the same crystalline structure being performed by Counselor Lopez.  The verbal lesson clearly interested the CSciO far more than anyone else who was left to half-listening to what was being said, but Adriana appeared to be in a world of her own.  Her attention was