"Shoulder Deep"
[previous post was "Unfriendly Skies" by the trigger happy Hanali]

Setting: Moon of PI ALPHA III, Inside the Underground Ruins
Stardate: 30148.1925

Eve and Shar'El watched as the fiery redhead vanished behind a corner of the alien and ancient machine, both women silently hoping that she would be alright.  It had become all too clear that when Sonja Paquette got an idea in her head, nothing could stop her from following it to its conclusion.  Many would have called this stubbornness, but to the ILO this character trait had been more along the lines of extreme determination and was a defining positive aspect of the engineer.

Aving lost sight of the redhead the ILO turned to the Counselor and offered a faint smile before she glanced up to the two standing men in amazement that they had managed to so fully keep Eeru's attention.  The Akitashiinu had been sent on a rant about the machine and how it had opened the universe to her people, how it had given them the knowledge they needed to take their rightful place in the cosmos.

Eve rolled her eyes at the words spoken by the silicon-based being, having heard similar stories to explain how an individual or even an entire race had come to justify what they had done.  It had been an interesting aspect of life in general, which obviously crossed not only the endless reaches of space but dimensions as well, to be able to find a way to justify anything.

Counselor Dalziel remembered several instances of her Academy classes dealing with the psychological drive throughout the history of worlds known to he Federation.  Crimes beyond description had all too often been committed against the weak by those who had found a way to justify their actions.  Oppression, revenge, and divine right had been but a few of the statements used to ward of whatever guilt should have accompanied the actions that had been taken.

"I hope Seska is alright in there," the Counselor said in a whispered voice, her large grey eyes having found the Bajoran-born woman trapped inside the strange collection of glowing wires and tubes.  Eve had forced her Academy memories aside to avoid being swept by them and knowing that they had become too much for her to keep away from the Ullian's ability.

Shar'El nodded and turned to look in the same direction as Eve before she mentally reached out into the Doctor's mind to see if all had been as it had was before.  Peace and tranquility still ruled the mind of the Bajoran as powerful memories of her time on VULCAN were being kept at the forefront.  From where she sat, the ILO could almost feel a struggle taking place, one that opposed Seska and the machine.

"Not sure what is actually happening," the ILO said, again making sure that her voice had been soft enough not to be heard by anyone else by Eve, "but Seska is forcefully keeping the memories of her time on VULCAN to the surface, effectively putting up a barrier to the machine's ability to look into her mind."

"I guess it's not used to having road blocks be put in its way when it comes to learning all that it can," the Counselor said repeating in some ways what the ILO had said earlier about the machine's original purpose.

"There is more about that thing than we know," Shar'El quietly sighed, "and I would not be surprised if it had a major role to play in what the Akitashiinu are doing."  With this in mind the ILO turned her attention back to Eeru.  As difficult as it had been for the Ullan to scan the memories of the silicon-based creature there had simply been too many unanswered questions.  Granted the answers would have likely been found inside the machine's bio-mechanical mind, but there had been simply too much information for the Intel Officer to scan through and too little time to do it in.

"Try not to force your way in," Eve said having figured out what Shar'El intended to do by the glare that pierced through her narrowed eyes towards the Akitashiinu female.  "Go slowly, she is distracted with our Captain and FCO, that may be enough to allow you to slip in and find what you are looking for."

The Counselor's words had been heard but as if they had come from a distance that had been hundreds of times the few inches that actually separated the two women.  All of her concentration would be required to make this work, if at all, and Shar'El welcomed the encouragements and anchor that Eve provided with her whispered words.

Tiffany Reeve

Ensign Shar'El
Intel Liaison Officer