"An Explosive Arrival"
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"The most important thing to me is to make as much of an impression as possible when I walk into a room."
- Kolgary Zar, Xepolite War Chief accused of the genocide of two entire and separate cultures

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 31199.1630

An eerie silence ruled over the bridge of the USS ANUBIS as the countdown to their arrival to the GAMMA ERADI Cluster neared its end.  The final stretch of their journey had not been any more dangerous than before, but the unknown of what they would find had kept everyone on edge. Some, like the Chief Medical Officer Doctor Doyanne, hoped for nothing that would see the crew of either ship put in danger. Others, such as the Chief Tactical and Security Officer, expected something to be waiting for them, justifying all of the preparations that they had gone through prior to now.

"Brace yourselves," the Operations Officer announced as he shot a quick glance to the Avatar who had remained by his side since her fortunate arrival. "Disengaging warp speed in 5... 4... 3... 2... 1..."

The ship came to a sudden yet smooth near stop, still under the protection of its cloaking ablative armour. The momentum of the SCARAB-Class Cruiser gently continued to carry the ship forward towards the GAMMA ERADI Cluster while the BASTET stood visible for all to see a few hundred kilometers off to the ANUBIS' starboard.

"Tactical," the Native American began as he moved to sit right at the edge of his chair. "Initiate a full sensor sweep of the area."

"Scanning," the normally raven haired Chief of Security acknowledged, sporting a rather bright crimson shade in her hair.  "Sensors are showing no other ships in the sector, although I can't get any solid readings more than a few thousand kilometers inside the cluster."

"If there is someone waiting for us in there," the Chief Science Officer stated, "they will have to come up with a way to pierce the sensor interference of the GAMMA ERADI Cluster or be as blind as we are."

"Where there's a will, there's a way," Eve sighed, her experience having shown more often than not that alternatives could always be found by those desperate enough to reach a specific goal.

Silence returned to the bridge as the command staff watched with heightened interest the USS BASTET making its way closer to the star cluster under quarter impulse power. From a distance, the ANUBIS matched the other ship's heading and speed, ready to jump in at a moment's notice should something appear on their sensors.

"At this rate we will be able to get back to NEW ALEXANDRIA for breakfast," Sonja chuckled briefly figuring that all of the hoopla had been for nothing. 

"I would not count on it. Sensors have just picked up an explosion," Ya'Han announced in complete surprise as she frantically scanned her instruments to figure out the cause. "Another?  There is no ship nor any sort of energy discharge but the explosions are happening right against the hull of the BASTET."

"Hail them!" the Native American demanded hoping that they would be able to shed some light on this latest mystery.

[/\] I know what you are going to ask and the answer is that we have no idea, [/\] Captain Iverson replied, the woman appearing on the main view screen as being clearly upset while holding onto her chair.

[/\] Sensors are picking up *nothing*. Whatever is hitting us has to either be cloaked or hidden in some other way, [/\] the BASTET's ILO added as she appeared on the screen obviously having meant the statement to be directed to her counterpart onboard the ANUBIS.

[/\] We have come to a complete stop but have no way to know if it will help, [/\] Commander Valentine added, clearly sharing the frustration being shown by everyone else on board the USS BASTET.

"Re-modulate sensors to include a wider range of frequencies as well as micro-sub-space disruptions," the ANUBIS' Executive Officer ordered of Maya, Shar'El needing to find a solution to this problem with the greatest possible urgency.

"Sensors registering a third explosion but still no signs as to their cause," Ya'Han announced with clear disdain, unable to do anything to help at this point in time.

"Near the end of the Dominion War, Deep Space 9 used cloaked replicating mines to block the access to the wormhole," the Chief Engineering Officer said. "What if a similar tech is being used here. Would explain why we can't see anything until it's too late."

"Options?" Erik demanded, hoping that a solution could be found before the BASTET would be transformed in a lifeless wreckage.

"If these are cloaked mines, it will take time to figure out how to spot them," the Chief Science Officer pointed out in an apologetic manner.  "For all we know the cause of these explosions could be from another dimension, which would make it impossible for us to detect or prevent."

"There is another option," Ens. Stark proposed. "If we are dealing with cloaked mines, we could use the ANUBIS to plow through the area. Hopefully the ablative amour would give us enough of an edge against them and take some of the heat from the BASTET."

"I don't like that plan," Shar'El admitted, "but I don't see us having any other option at this time."

"Fine," the Native American sighed, surrendering himself to the unavoidable order he would have to give. "Helm, alter course and speed to bring us straight across the BASTET's path. Best guess as to where these mine would be located.  Commander Maya, do everything you can to give us a way to find whatever is causing these explosions." Erik paused for a moment before opening a channel to the ship's Sickbay. "Captain Morningstar to Doctor Doyanne, have your staff on standby for treating burns as well as explosive decompression. Things are going to get nasty quickly."

=/\= Understood Captain, =/\= the CMO replied without delay, her staff as well as herself having always been ready to answer any and all emergency needs.

"Ladies and gentlemen, please fasten your seatbelts," Sonja began before taking in a long deep breath. "Looks like we're crashing this party in a big way. It's going to be a bumpy ride," the CEO concluded with using a clearly Jamaica accent for her last words.

Francois Charette

Captain Erik Morningstar
Commanding Officer


Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn
Robotics Engineering Officer