"Not Even A Nice Place To Visit"
(Previous Post: "Not a Competition")

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Deck 12, Planetary Studies Lab
Stardate: 30145.1045

A holographic image of a planetoid torn by the most primal of natural forces hovered above the large circular table set in the centre of the Planetary Studies Lab.  The Shillian scientist could not draw her eyes from the image as it slowly spun on its normal orbital axis.  Jagged lines of glowing red and orange ripped through the spherical image, emanating from countless volcanoes which filled the atmosphere with dust.  Right next to these rivers of molten lava, bodies of crystal blue water were shaken without mercy by quakes that threatened to tear the moon apart.

The more information came to be displayed both around the holographic image and on the small view screens surrounding the work station, the more the Chief Science Officer of the USS ANUBIS became interested in that single celestial body.

The moon of PI ALPHA III had been large by planetary accounts, which only made the chaos found on every square meter of the surface that much more impressive.  The planetoid as a whole suffered from quakes on a minute to minute basis, some powerful enough to rip open the outer crust.  Fuelled by the constant flow of ashes from the volcanoes, tremendous storms raged all over the hellish moon.  The temperature of the water found on the shattered surface ranged from near freezing at the poles to boiling when near any of the volcanoes.

The Shillian scientist grinned ever so slightly as she focused her attention on one specific set of data that appeared on her monitors.  Through all of this fiery chaos, primal life had found a way to take root, allowing for the most basic of plants and bacterial life form to call this place home.  It was easy to see why Admiral Koniki had selected this place as proving grounds for the VIPERS, SPHYNX, LOCUS and BARRACUDA, but the Chief Science Officer had hoped that their little exercise would grant her the opportunity to do a little bit of research in an environment the likes she had never expected to encounter.

The grin was replaced with a sigh as the Shillian remembered another crucial aspect of their trip to the moon of PI ALPHA III, the part where she would be action Executive Officer.  As such her responsibilities would be to the rest of the crew, to insure their safety and the rapid completion of their mission objective.  To take even a few minutes to analyse some bacterial organism that had evolved to survive in near boiling water or to study a plant able to live through the constant ash falling from the sky would have to wait.

With her role back in perfect focus, the Chief Science Officer began to download and catalog the data that had been available.  Captain Morningstar, Ensign Ttosk and Stark would need to be briefed on the several atmospheric turbulence they would be sure to encounter as they flew the VIPERS.  The rest of the senior staff would need to know about the unstable nature of the quake plagued ground and the potentially misleading calmness of some of the bodies of water which were to be avoided at all costs.  According to the gathered data, several of these isolated pools possessed a high enough concentration of sulphuric acid to reduce a LOCUS into scrap metal in a matter of seconds.  Doctor Doyanne would need to be ready to treat such acid burns while Lieutenant Paquette would need to ready the crafts for the extreme conditions they would be forced to deal with once there.

As a Scientist, Maya could see countless elements that she would have loved to investigate during her time on the moon, but as the Executive Officer for the mission, the Shillian instead saw countless things to be wary of and if at all possible avoided.  Hopefully Counselor Dalziel would see it as a positive point to see the Head of the Science Department take her new role to such heart.

The moon of PI ALPHA III might have been a dream come true for a Scientist, but unfortunately for the upcoming mission of the crew of the USS ANUBIS the planetoid would not even be a nice place to visit.

Jessica Solarik

Lieutenant Commander Maya
Chief Science Officer

"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)