Work to be done Corridor
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Lieutenant JG Alyssa Matthews had never really enjoyed being closed up in an office while she worked. she was half caitian so working in enclosed spaces made it hard for her to concentrate. She wasn't exactly claustraphobic, but she found going for a walk helped her to think more clearly. Alyssa was going through the problems on this station and energy reserves and power being used. She frowned because more than half the station was not getting the power to systems that required it. Without energy this station wasn't going to last long. Part of her job was making sure power got where it needed right? In some ways she was the ships electriction in other ways she was the ships supply market.

Alyssa turned down the corridor making her way to engineering, it was one of the few places besides her office that she knew exactly where it was on such a big station and knew that it worked. Especially since she also knew the department head Wulf. Checking a few things on her padd she continued to walk not even looking up as she stepped into the turbolift thankful that it still worked really. It was better than having to climb through the stations jefferies tubes. Especially since Alyssa wasn't so sure they were safe at the moment.

The lift ride was not horribly slow she did make good time but it could have been a little faster. Could be attributed to power to the lifts being less important than to other areas of the station. That was fine really because by the time the lift doors opened again she had a mental checklist in her head of things she needed to do. The first step was the Energrizers to recharge the dilithium crystals that have been sitting for only goddess knows how long before the station was opened again.

Stepping through the doors of engineering she smiled and nodded to the Engineers before moving to a console that wasn't being used and started to work on the main energizers. She noticed that Wulf was already working on the main energizers so she turned her attention to the energizers. Her slender fingers moving across the console with experties and skills concentrating on what she needed to do which was re-direct power through the energizers.

Alyssa kept an eye on the information coming back to her the graphs on the dilithium crystals was showing an increase so she was pleased to see that redirecting power through the energrizers were actually recharging the dilithium crystals. Alyssa, however, knew she had to be careful not to over power the dilithium crystals. Because there was a chance that if she wasn't careful she could cause them to move out of alignment and Wulf would not be happy with her if she did that.

Turning her attention to the Electro-Plasma system the lifes blood of stations and star ships alike. She knew she had to be extremely careful here too much energy through the EPS grid and she could cause more damage than help. She saw the EPS grid speeding up as she worked. Once she was sure on her calculations and the power levels were in safe zones she let the power she had redirected through the energizers resume it's normal route. Making a mental check on her list and started to move onto the next one which was to check in with Wulf and the other department heads to make sure everyone had everything they needed for supplies in their department to make a list for the next supply run.

Checking to see if Engineering needs anything Main Engineering
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Alyssa made her way over towards Byrnes' office except as she passed the pool table she saw him there going over readings, "Lieutenant Byrnes." She said to get his attention, yes she did call him by his rank and last name because they were on duty. "So I'm going go around to the departments and see what supplies everyone needs so I can get them distributed and see if I'm missing anything from my store rooms that did not come on the last supply ship from starfleet." Alyssa told him as she moved to stand by his side.

Byrnes glanced over, then his eyes went back to the table-sized schematic of the base. "Supplies?" He gave a grin, his eyes glancing her way now and then as they spoke. "I know we got some with the new arrivals, but do we have enough for each department?" He tapped a few keys, diverting half the power from a secondary corridor, the one he had sealed off, and sent it elsewhere. "So far, we're fine down here. We have one industrial replicator almost repaired, the others will be up shortly after. More than anything we need duranium plating for structural integrity."

"When I checked supplies earlier we did get duranium plating, however I do not believe we have enough to cover a base of this size so I will put it on the list for the next transmission to starfleet for supplies." Alyssa said softly, anything else you might need like extra componets incase of a power over load or a malfunction, you never know what kind of emergency this place will cause us. I mean what with parts of it still falling down and our not so friendly neighborhood Dragons right on our doorstep that we still need to communicate with." Alyssa sighed hopping those dragons are alright for the moment.

"Yes, to all of it," said Wulf, making it easy on her. "Once the replicators are working efficiently then a lot of this ordering crap will be cut in half." Setting his console on standby he turned to her. "I need some whiskey, though. Earth whiskey, if we can get it. Nothing like an engineering get together with libations for all. Keeps morale up."

"I think I have a friend who can send us just the thing and it wont be synthetic." She gave him a wink as she took notes on her PADD. "Anything else before I head off to the other departments to see if they need anything, I mean I know once you have the replicators you wont need to do this requisition anymore but replicators are low items on the repairs at the moment." She said softly.

Byrnes thought about that a moment, then gave a slight shaking of the head. "Not that I can think of, right now. If you think of something we may need, then please order it for us. My head's not exactly on paperwork right now."

"Don't you worry about a thing, I'll look around the store rooms to see what else we do not have that you may need, like spare tools in case you find yourself with a new crew or tools break." She said softly.

"Brilliant!" Wulf agreed. "We can never have enough tools, for sure."

Alyssa laughed softly at his enthusiasm, "Alright I"ll get this put in after I visit with the other departments I'll see you later Wulf." She told him as she turned to leave.

"Hey," Byrnes called after her, and when she turned asked a question. "If I were to stop by your quarters to see you and Sara, what's a good time?"

Alyssa paused and turned to him thoughtfully. "Anytime after your shift, mine should be done in a couple more hours, but then as Chief you know we're never really off always on call." She smirked. "So anytime is fine." She told him honestly. Alyssa did hope that her surprise didn't show on her face.

Wulf gave a smile. "Well, you have quite the little manipulator in Sara, who stopped by and asked me to come play with her. Work being in the way, I couldn't break away, and I have an obligation elsewhere these days. So, just wanted to make sure about time."

"Why that little ankle biter, she knows she's grounded, was she at least on her best behavior? she didn't act like the little devil I know she can be?" Alyssa asked, no she wasn't mad at her daughter after all Nikki would have been with her, "Nikki was with her right?" She asked eyes widening in worry.

Byrnes nodded. "Yes, yes she was, and she was a pleasure, as well. Sara wanted to see me, so I caved. Who couldn't with that adorable face? Nikki mentioned a few times about being grounded, now that I recall, but the two of us didn't care. Sorry, but having a fan feeds my inner good guy." He gave a smile and wink.

Alyssa laughed a little, "Well I trust Nikki as a Nanny, its why I keep her around she loves my daughter as much as I do so if she agreed, there was good reason too." Alyssa said softly smiling proudly. "I'm glad she's taken a shine to you, normally she doesn't like guys. well except for her granddad." Alyssa admitted.

"I'm a chump," laughed Byrnes. "I promised her a secret, and if it all works out, then she'll get to see it. If people who think they're better than me disagree, then it won't happen."

"Better than you huh? I'm sorry I don't see how anyone can be better than someone who keeps their promises." She said softly giving him a soft smile.

Byrnes rolled his eyes, not at her, but at the situation discussed. "Happens all the time. There are those in Starfleet who believe weapons are the first course of action, then there are those like me who follow the Starfleet Motto; Ex Astris Scientia. From the stars, knowledge. Screw what others think, and if it costs me my commission, then I'll do it that way as a civilian."

"I'd rather not follow the shoot first ask questions later way." Alyssa agreed, but she also knew that there were people out there that prefered it that way than to what they had been created do which was explore new galaxies and new civilizations, as questions first then if forced to do so defend themselves.

"I'm not saying I won't shoot when called for," stated Wulf. "Once I decide to shoot back I am all for it when it comes down to me or them."

"Well yeah you'll be defending yourself then you wont have started the fighting or shooting as the case may be." Alyssa told him softly.

Byrnes grinned. "Exactly. So, what's a good time, again, to stop by and 'play'?"

"Well if you wanna spend time with Sara too I would suggest before 2130 hours you should be good because I put Sara to bed around 2200 hours so I am sure she gets enough sleep." Alyssa said softly.

"She's a kid," said Wulf. "After burning energy all day, they usually crash hard. Anyway, thanks, I'll keep the time in mind."

"No problem, she'll be happy to see you." Alyssa smiled softly. "You sure there isn't anything else I can list for you on the supply requsition?" Alyssa asked softly. She had the Duranium plating, extra tool for the engineering staff as well as the emergency components that may be needed.

"Not that I can think of," answered Byrnes. "Thanks for stopping by, Alyssa. Nice to know you have our backs."

"Always." She grinned and continued out of engineering she had several other departments to visit.

Checking to see if Medical needs anything Corridor - Medical
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After leaving Engineering, Alyssa made her way back to the medical wards. However, she wasn't going there for a physical but to see if there were any supplies that Doctor Nichols was going to need transferred into her department or anything that they did not have in supplies already to be requested on the next supply transfer ship. Making her way through the offices until she came to Dr Cara Nichol's she hit the chime on the door to see if she was in.

Cara's yeoman was at lunch and the door between the outer office and Cara's refused to stay open so Cara hoped that this was someone from Engineering. Knowing that the outer release wasn't functioning, Cara got up from her desk and opened the door from her side. Seeing it was the Ops Chief and not an Engineer she felt disappointed but said, "sorry. Door is effed up. Come on in."

"One more thing on Engineering's checklist I see?" Alyssa said as she looked to the door. "Sticking? could be an issue with the release valves not working properly." Alyssa said, though she didn't sound 100% sure, she did have some engineering training, one didn't go into ops without some kind of knowledge of how other departments work. Especially if you need to supply them. "I'm checking with all the departments to be sure they do not have anything they need that wasn't delivered on the last transport or anything transferred from the store rooms." Alyssa explained her presence to Cara.

"Have a seat, Alyssa," Cara said. "There's fresh coffee in the carafe on the credenza," she pointed. "Help yourself." She pressed the door release and when it opened she kicked the small trash can into the doorway she and her Yeoman had been using to keep the door propped open. " you have the latest requisition list handy?" she asked.

"Yes," Lizzy answered and grabbed the PADD off of a pile of PADDs she had on her desk. She got up and took it over to Cara then returned to her desk.

Cara let go of the door release and the door slid shut, stopping when it made contact with the trash can. On her way back to her desk she said, "the damn release out there doesn't work, it won't stay open unless you hold the release in here, so we're improvising. I called Engineering but they haven't made it up here yet. Anyway," she said, holding out the PADD, "this is our current supply needs."

Alyssa helped herself to some coffee while she waited. Taking the PADD that Cara held out she looked it over adding it to the pile of PADD's she kept in her pocket as important ones. "I could take a look if you want? I may not be an engineer, but I do have enough knowledge to handle a door." Alyssa offered sipping the Coffee.

"No, thank you," Cara said, sitting back down at her desk. "You look like you have your hands full already. Engineering will get to it. I'm sure they are busy. "How does Sara like being here? Does she miss seeing real sky?" she asked.

"Well so far she loves it she was able to slip away and explore on her own so I had to unfortunately ground her for two weeks hopefully that will make it stick that there are some places that are still unsafe about the station. She's eager to start classes she wants to meet all the other kids." Alyssa said with a slight laugh, "I have no doubt she'll make friends and start causing some chaos on the station. You'd never know it by look at her, but she has a real devils streak in her. you know on my last assignment she actually used the holo-emitters to create a pool on the bridge and with water everywhere and right in front of the captain she does a cannon ball from the Lift into the middle of the new bridge pool splashing the Command team right there on the bridge." Alyssa told Cara with a genuine smile at the memory.

Cara laughed. "That I would have paid to see," she said. "I'm glad you guys are adapting. Life here isn't easy to get used to. The only time I see the stars is when I sneak into the Ops Center. It and the landing pads are the only part of this place that isn't inside a dammed rock. Thank God for holosuites or I would go nuts."

"I can agree with that Sara is use to always seeing the stars from our quarters, unfortunately our quarters are further in to the station so she is unable to see them. Give her time though she will find some way of causing mischief on a station this size. I am however, trying to get it into her head that there are places on the station that aren't safe for her and she cannot go there." Alyssa said softly smiling at the memory.

Cara remembered the sounds of children's laughter on SB900 and she felt a twinge of sadness. It would be nice to have families around again. She decided to change the subject by asking, " you think we can get the entire list?"

Alyssa looked down at the list in question. "Yes I think we can get everything on the list I have a friend at Jupitor Station if I have any problem through normal stations." Alyssa looked to Cara next, "Is there anything else you can think of that you might want added to this list?"

"No. Just personnel," Cara said. "We are working with a skeleton staff so everyone is pulling double shifts. Stuff like bandages, labcoats, surgical attire....we can replicate those. The meds and instruments are the most critical."

"Alright I'll make sure this is on the very next supply request including the request for personnel." Alyssa said softly moving to stand.

Meeting the Wulf Main Engineering, Level 1 Following 'The Ripping'
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Christopher strode into the first level of Main Engineering, a Staff Sergeant from his security detail following close behind. Stopping for a moment to admire the massive spherical generator in the center of the room. Through the shielding, he could see the core glowing an iridescent blue with occasional flashes of white energy that coalesced against the magnetic containment field. Several members of the department were moving between consoles and double checking data and not paying him any heed. Turning, he flagged down a technician.

"Excuse me, do you know where I can find Lieutenant Byrnes?" Christopher asked.

The young man snapped to attention but snuck an upward look at him. "He should be in his office in Section Alpha, sir."

Christopher nodded. "Understood. Carry on." he said, turning to head towards Alpha Section.

Byrnes, having gone over another set of schematics for this place, came out of his office with a purposeful step. Coming around a bend he almost ran smack-dab into Mitchell. "Begging your pardon, General. Just a little busy." He came to a stop to address his CO.

Mitchell looked the man over, noting that he still managed to be polite even though he had just suffered a mid-passageway collision. "No worries, Lieutenant. I'll follow you." he said, giving his uniform jacket a slight tug. The security Staff Sergeant was standing half a pace behind and to their left, his eyes sweeping the area as they stood idle.

"Alrighty, then." Byrnes used his head to say 'this way', and led his CO into main engineering. "As you can see," said Wulf, setting his PADD aside and pointing to monitors around the room. "We have extensive areas still without main power. We're bypassing a lot of that to make sure this section of the facility, our section, is up to standard and functional. Phaser arrays and a few torpedo towers work for defense, but if we get into a major engagement we better hope the small craft pilots are as good as they say they are."
FIX MY DAMN DOOR! Deck 11 West - Nichol's Office
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Cara watched as the door of her office slid shut with a clang. "Lizzy....can you release it from your side?" she called through the closed door.

Cara's yeoman tried the release control but nothing happened. She tried again but still nothing happened. "No, Doc," she called out.

"Damnú air!" Cara swore in Irish. She slapped the control on her side and the door slid open. Before she had a chance to say anything to Lizzy the door slid shut again. "Mac soith!" she cursed as she smacked the release again. This time she held her hand over the control and the door stayed open. "Get Engineering up here to fix this damn thing before I find a cutting torch and do it myself," she growled. "And find something to jam it open," she added.

"Yes, ma'am," Lizzy said, chuckling under her breath. She looked around her outer office and grabbed trash can by her desk and set it in the open doorway. "Best I can come up with," she said, apologetically.

Cara let go of the door release go and the door slid shut as far as the trash can would allow then stopped. At least it wasn't closed all the way. "Thanks," Cara said and went back to her desk.

Lizzy tapped her combadge and said, "Engineering to the Medical Director's office," then sat back down at her own desk to continue her filing.

Byrnes heard the call, sliding on his back from out under a console in a science lab. Sitting up he winced at the shoulder again, the damn thing healing well with what Nira had slaked it with, but it would shoot pangs every once in a while when moved a certain way. Tapping his combadge. "I'm on my way." Getting up with a few grunts, muscles adjusting to standing again, he stretched his back and arms, another wince, then sighed out as he put his tools in his vest pockets and headed out. "Fix that crap heap in there," he said, thumbing over his shoulder at the lab he had just vacated, directing a minion to do it. Going through the station, to medical, he walked into the chamber and immediately saw the problem. But, being who he was, and spotting the first person in view (Lizzy) he had to ask with mirth in his eyes. "Having problems with the trash?"

Lizzy looked up and smiled, her cheeks blushing. "Other than the fact that it's over there and I need it over here but if I put it over here I can't get into the Doc's office and if she leaves she can't get back in because the release control on this side doesn't work and the door won't stay open by itself," she said, all in one breath.

"Wow," smiled Wulf. "That was impressive. Next time I need a speech writer I'll ask you," he said while laughing. "Nicely done. I'll go save our Doctor from the evil trash can and its sidekick, broken door." Winking with a grin, he then went over and popped the panel on the outside of the Doc's office, disconnecting power to the door. He winced with the left shoulder again, but hand cranked the door open and locked it in place. Stepping over to the entrance her leaned on the doorjamb with a good amount of swagger. "Hey, Doc. Door is locked open for now, no power. Should I call Security and arrest the trash can, or just move it aside?"

Lizzy laughed. "Nooo....I need that trash can," she said. "I promise it won't go wandering again."

Cara got up from her desk and walked over to the doorway. "You sure it's locked open?" she asked.

Byrnes gave a smile. "I hope so. If not I'm about to get squashed." Chuckling and standing up straight, he gave a serious nod despite his smile. "Yes. How soon we forget these damn things do have hand cranks and manual locks. Plus, main power is disconnected to your door. I don't need it misbehaving while trying to repair it."

Cara noticed the way Byrnes seemed to be favoring his shoulder and she quirked an eyebrow. "Is that anything I can help with?" she asked, nodding at his shoulder.

Wulf glanced down at his shoulder, then up at her, a sheepish look on his face. "A minor puncture wound. Thought it was gonna be fine but it's giving me a bit of irritation. If you want to look at it, I'd be obliged. But," he stepped further inside, voice kept low as he got right up to the Doctor. "Do what you can but keep it between us as much as you can. I have a special project I am looking into and it could be beneficial if done right." He took his vest off, then removed the gold shirt and undershirt, showing her the obvious puncture wound. He just wondered how much experience she had had with arrows.

"Doctor patient confidentiality," Cara said with a smile. "Come over here and have a seat," she said and indicated the small sofa off to the side of the office. "Lizzy....I'm in a meeting. No interruptions," she called through the now open door. Getting her kit from the cabinet by the sofa she took out a bio-scanner and ran it over Wulf. "No damage to the bursa or tendons," she said. "Now....take your shirt off so I can take a look."

"My pants?" Byrnes gave a smile and wink, chuckling. "You're having one of my kind of days. Shirt's over there, Doc." He motioned to the engineers vest and two shirts hanging on the back of one of her guest chairs. "In all honesty, I took an arrow to the left shoulder, upper chest, as you can see."

"An arrow?" Cara asked as she examined the wound. "How the hell did you get shot with an arrow?"

"I will tell you," said Wulf, boring into her eyes with his own. "But, the confidentiality must stand. We're not alone on this rock, others came here to survive and hide from the Borg. Swear I can trust you like a confidante, I will spill it all. Make a personal log for yourself to cover your ass if this goes sideways, but let me have this for now...please."

Cara's eyes widened and she leaned back and looked at Wulf. "Not alone?" She asked. Then her eyes narrowed. "You're joking, right? You turned off the safety settings in the holodeck." She smirked. "Men. Those safety settings are there to prevent this kind of thing. What were you doing? Playing cowboys and Indians? Looks like the cowboys lost this round," she laughed as she grabbed a dermal-regenerator and began working on sealing the puncture.

Wulf grinned and winked, his way of thanking her without words. "Yeah, well, I'm from Montana. Natives are friends as much as enemies." He gave a laugh. "The salve used got rid of the infection, but damned if I know why it keeps aching. I figured it was the healing process, waking me up to nerves that are back in action."

"It's a deep puncture wound," Cara said. "If you had come to see me when it was still fresh I would have been able to regenerate the muscle tissue and the nerves would have been less traumatized. As it all I can do is close the wound, regenerate the dermis and the muscles and nerves will have to heal on their own. That will take time. It will ache the nerves reconnect themselves...there will be stinging. I get that you wanted to keep this off book....for whatever reason....but if the arrow had penetrated the bursa you could have faced a much more serious issue and limited prognosis." She shut off the instrument and examined her work. "Ok. Looks good. Ice for the use for a week or so. And stay away from sharp pointy things."

"My usual operating procedure," said Wulf, standing and gathering his shirts. He undid his pants to tuck the shirts in, getting properly dressed in uniform as he spoke. "Doc, I owe you, seriously. And, my reasoning is this. Too often we charge in and want to know everything, and when we do that we can cause more harm than good. So, I am taking this slow, seeing if this being is benevolent or malevolent. If she turns out to be a demon I'll set demo charges and bury her ass alive." He zipped up his engineers vest once it was on. "Her cavern was full of life. Bio-luminescent, the lot of it. Amazing to see on a moon we think is pretty much dead."

Cara raised an eyebrow as she began putting her instruments back in her FTK. Looking at Wulf she asked, "are you absolutely sure there is some sort of being living in the lava tunnels of the asteroid? None of our instruments detected any signs of life when we landed."

Byrnes, now dressed and properly buttoned up, turned to face her. "The tricorder in my hand didn't detect it either, and I was looking at it while scanning. Everything looked normal, like every day plant life, and then voila! It came to life at the behest of the lavender gal. She was the one who applied the salve to stave off infection. Yes, I'm taking a chance here, but it is what my oath is all about."

"She applied....," Cara started to say but stopped. She was finding this all a little unbelievable. "Did she communicate with you?"

"Yes, she did," admitted Byrnes, not trying to hide anything. "She speaks Fed Standard pretty well. Says she's been in the base several times before we arrived, reading and exploring, trying to understand who wanted to be here. I mentioned the Borg and she got quiet, and a bit snippy, so I'm thinking her own people have had their run-ins with them too."

"Damn," Cara whispered and slouched back in her seat. "You're fracking serious. I honestly thought you had been eating some of the Precho Mushrooms that have been going around. Some freighter brought them in and I've been getting a lot of people experiencing hallucinations from them." She looked up at Wulf and said in awe, "you have actually made first contact with a new species. Do you think there are more?"

Wulf pulled a chair over, sitting face to face with her, and kept tapping her knee every once in a while in his excitement. "From what she said, about the Puazi, her people, there are more out there. Scattered? I have no idea. We, as Starfleet, know that the El-Aurians had to scatter to the stars after the Borg took their homeworld, so who's to say that more aren't out there?"

"Is she the only one on the Rock?" Cara asked, trying to imagine what it must have been like being the only being on the Rock while it was vacant. The loneliness must have been awful. No Human she knew of would have survived with their sanity....they weren't cut out to be alone for long.

"She gave no indication that there were others here," stated Byrnes. "I think she is alone here, created a place she feels safe, and hidden from the surface. Perhaps she too thought this might make a good spot for refugees to use in transit to other places."

Cara leaned forward and whispered, "I want to meet her, Wulf."

Wulf, looking Cara in the eye, gave three slight nods. "I will try to arrange it. With all I've been trying to get up and running I haven't returned there yet. Our survival is paramount, so when I get caught up then I plan to return and speak to Nira more in depth."

Cara nodded, eagerly. Not only was Wulf's Nira a new appeared she knew about how to utilize the asteroid's properties in ways that Cara and her staff could benefit from. She wasn't sure how the Marine General would handle a first contact with a being that, by Wulf's description, seemed fragile. Marines weren't known for being delicate. And she didn't know how Drew would react to know the existence of a being living in the lava tubes of the asteroid was being hidden from him by her, especially, but she wanted to see Nira for herself before she made any decisions that might jeopardize Nira and others....if there were others....who had made this rock their home long before the Federation moved in on them. "Good," she whispered. "Until then we'll keep this between us. The last thing I want is to have her domain invaded by a bunch of phaser wielding security or Marines."

Byrnes leaned back and closed his eyes a moment, and when they opened there was pain behind them. "That would be a mistake. She put an arrow in me as a warning. I never even knew she was there until it was too late. She has made a home here and will defend it to the death, and from the look in her eye when she spoke of home, there will be no remorse. She only aided me after realizing I wasn't a threat to her livelihood. If soldiers get sent in, just exploring or not, without permission, you're going to be a busy Doctor."

Cara shook her head. "No. I don't want that," she said. "I just want to see if there is anything we can do for her....learn more about her and her race. Maybe learn how to utilize this hunk of rock's natural resources. We may be able to get stuff from HQ every 6 months or so but we need to tap into what's available to us here for the in between times. These lava one knows about them except you....right?" she asked.

"So far, Doc." Wulf sat up again. "One of the tertiary corridors collapsed, with no injuries, thankfully. Bad architecture and engineering from those who built this place. But, to their credit, they never expected damp and water on the opposite side, which this cavern was full of. I went to climb down inside and ended up tumbling down into a pond that was waist deep, and had a running stream away from it. How she has done all this I have no idea. But, the water is crystal clear and potable."

Cara quirked an eyebrow. "Where is it coming from?" she asked. "This is solid volcanic rock. There is no there is no weather." This kept getting weirder and weirder.

Byrnes gave a grin, which showed he was only guessing as he spoke. "Nira has set up a holographic sun/moon, and night/day dynamic within the caverns. I can only surmise that the water is from condensation to begin with, but if she has been in this facility over the years she may have absconded with replicator technology, connected it enough to provide the water, and then let's it free flow. Beyond that, I have no idea. The really weird part is that after shooting me and removing the arrow, she stuck it back into the metallic quiver she carries, and it disappeared momentarily. Replaced by two new ones for fast draw. That tells me the quiver she carries also has replicator tech, and her ammo will never run out as long as she has power to it."

Cara was beyond curious now. A part of her still said that Wulf was pulling her leg but he didn't seem like the type to drag out a practical joke with this much detail and this long. Unless he was a pathological liar and he didn't strike her as that, either.

Lizzy stuck her head through the door and said, "I'm sorry, Doc. But they need you in the ER. Something to do with Ashley."

Cara looked up and her expression changed to one of concern. She looked over at Wulf and said, "that's my niece...or my boyfriend's niece. I need to go," and she got to her feet. "I do want to meet...," she glanced at the open door, "...your friend as soon as possible," she said.

Byrnes nodded. "When I know something, you will. Just keep this between us." Wulf stood and left.


Have I Got a Deal For You FOB - CO's Office
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Braylin checked in at the XO’s office and found Knight wasn’t in so with a shrug he headed for the CO’s office. He poked his head in the outer office door and saw that the Yeoman wasn’t at her desk so he mosied over to the other office door and peeked in. It, too, was empty, but a steaming cup of coffee sat on the General’s desk and that told Braylin that its owner would be returning. He strolled over to the small sofa and plopped down, taking a fat cigar out of his pocket and rolling it between his fingers to loosen the tobacco then he stuck it between his teeth and dug out a lighter. Propping his feet up on the small coffee table he lit the cigar, took a drag and blew a couple of smoke rings toward the ceiling.

Christopher had been meeting with Command Master Chief Tomaszewski for lunch when he realized that he was running behind and bid the Master Chief adieu. Heading back to his office on the other section of the ring, he smelled something sweet and musky in the corridor the closer he got to his office. Picking up his pace, he reached the outside of his office and walked through just as the doors slid open for him. Stopping for a moment, he noticed a man sitting on the sofa, smoking a large cigar that was slowly graying at the tip as it turned to ash.

“You know, that’s my Denegarian leather couch you’re sitting on. I’d appreciate it if you didn’t get your ash all over it. It’ll take forever to get the smell out.” Christopher said, nonplussed at the man sitting on his couch but rather annoyed that he felt the need to invade one of the few unadulterated spaces that he had.

Reaching in his vest Braylin pulled out another cigar and held it up to Mitchell. “Best in the quadrant,” he said.

Chris held up his hand in protest. “I don’t smoke and I’d appreciate if you’d put that out in my office.” he was immediately suspicious of this man with his slightly crooked smile and his twinkling eye.

“I always come bearing gifts,” Braylin laughed as he took a puff from his cigar and blew a smoke ring. “And...this time….I bring a proposition that will benefit everyone involved...especially you and me.” Emphasis on the me part, he thought to himself.

Christopher raised his eyebrow, catching the nuance in this man’s tone. “And what, pray tell, is the catch?” he asked as he walked to his chair and took a seat.

Braylin shrugged, took one last puff off of his cigar and smashed the end of it on the heel of his boot, then put both cigars back in his vest. “I am prepared to offer you the same deal I offered Commander Knight. I provide you with some resources you need to keep this place running and keep your people fed and I am provided with free repair services for my ship and safe harbor for me and my partner whenever we’re in the neighborhood. No questions asked about the where and how,” he said, clasping his hands behind his head and leaning back against the cushions of of couch.

Christopher leaned forward. “So you’re the pirate I’ve heard so much about.”

“Captain Michael Braylin at your service,” Braylin said, making a mock salute with two fingers.

“You should know that the Federation doesn’t deal with pirates or criminals. We cannot afford to bring the Federation into disrepute. So why are you trying to strike a deal? Have you decided to become a legitimate businessman, Captain?“ he asked, a slight bit of sarcasm in his voice.

“Ah,General. You wound me,” Braylin said, holding his hand over his heart. “I am a legitimate businessman. You have needs. I have contacts. I have needs. I provide you with what you provide me with what I need. Is that not a legitimate form of business?” he asked, innocently.

“Only if I know where what I need is coming from. People like you steal what you need from those who have nothing and give it to those who can pay. You are the very definition of what the Federation rejects. So please understand if I decline your request.” he said, the edge in his voice growing as the conversation went longer.

“I assure you, General Mitchell, I am no thief,” Braylin said, still smiling his most charming smirk/smile. “A gambler, yes. A womanizer, most definitely. A con man, most likely. But I never steal. I don’t need to. I provide a service.” He pulled his feet off of the coffee table and sat forward, resting his elbows on his knees and clasping his hands , his index fingers pointing at Mitchell. “How long have you been in the Delta Quadrant, General? Six months? Things work a little differently out here than they do you put it...legitimate resources can be had around every corner.” He stood up. “I had a line on 100 units of Cypzite Crystals which can be turned into a power supply. Enough to power this base for the next 25 years. But if you aren’t interested….” He moved to walk toward the door.

“Wait.” Christopher ordered. “What do you want for those crystals?” he asked, leaning forward on his desk. It was no secret that the base was running low on power and these crystals would benefit them immensely, especially until they could get the geothermal core running again.

With his back to Mitchell, Braylin’s smirk grew for a second. Then he turned, looking straight faced. “The Arnev sustained some damage to her inertial dampeners and her nav computer is offline. I need someone with the knowledge to help me repair it and the dampeners. My partner and I also need a shower and a home cooked meal. An actual Earth meal. Not some alien version of steak that isn’t even meat and a real bed for a few nights. For that I will get you your crystals,” he said, looking directly at the General.

“Head to Surface Repair Bay Three. I’ll advise Lieutenant Byrnes and Lieutenant Matthews that you’re coming and they’ll arrange your repairs along with your lodging in the VIP quarters. If you want a meal, I’ll talk to the cook. Now if there’s nothing else that you need, you can leave before I change my mind or have you arrested for attempting to bribe me.”

Braylin stepped over to the desk and extended his hand. With a smile he said, “Pleasure doing business with you, General.”

Christopher reluctantly extended his hand, almost as if he was about to touch something toxic. This man had him in a corner and he knew that he had no choice but to oblige him.

Braylin clicked his heels together as a form of salute, spun around and marched out of the General’s office, a victorious smirk on his face.

Christopher lowered his hand slowly, wiping it on his pant leg. He felt a sense of uncleanliness that pervaded to the very fiber of hs being.

“God help the virtuous.” he said as he sighed and turned to the viewport to stare at the stars.

Moving on with supplies for the next department Security/Tactical Offices
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After checking in with Sickbay and talking with Doctor Cara Nichols about the supplies that sickbay would need on the next run that replicators could not handle for them, Alyssa decided to head over to Security before she finished out her day and went home to her daughter. Yawning as she moved to step off the lift she needed a cup of french vanilla iced coffee maybe she will get one if the security/tactical chief asked her for a drink. Making her way down the corridor she made her way to Lt Commander Jack Devlin's office before hitting the chime.

Jack was surprised when the chime rang on his door. Usually, people entered the outer office and his Yeoman announced the visitor on the intercom. "She must be a lunch," he said allowed then called out, "come in."

"Hi, I'm Lieutenant JG Alyssa Matthews, the new COps Officer, I'm going around to the department heads to see if anyone needs any supplies that did not come on the last supply transport from the alpha quadrant." Alyssa introduced herself as well as her reason for being there.

Jack stood up in a gentlemanly fashion and smiled. "I remember you, Lieutenant. I checked you in when you arrived. Have a seat," he said. "I was just about to break for a cup of coffee," he said, stepping over to the replicator on his back wall. "Can I get you something?"

"Actually yes I do remember, and an ice vanilla coffee would be heaven right about now." She said softly moving to take a seat opposite his desk. grateful for the coffee.

Jack ordered Alyssa's coffee and then his own. He carried both over to the front of his desk and handed Alyssa's to her. "There ya go. Sorry it's replicator coffee," he said and leaned on the front of his desk. "Supplies, huh? Let's see...," he said, thoughtfully as he took a sip of his coffee. "Just about everything we need can be replicated. Other than people. I could use a couple of experienced investigators, about 10 more security officers and an assistant. Most of the officers I have are pulling double duty as brig officers. Especially now that we are getting more civilian traffic on the promenade. Between that and the skirmishes between the flyboys and the Marines...," he took another sip of his coffee, leaving his sentence open ended.

"I understand that, but not all replicators are working and with the station in such disrepair energy to the replicators is limited so until we can get the station back to full strength we're requesting supplies from the alpha quadrant and anything that can be replicated needs to be requisitioned for the time being." Alyssa explained softly. "Its time consuming, but necessary at the moment."

" that case," Jack said with a grin. "We could use about 30 wrist restraint cuffs and 10 ankle. 15 weapons' belts....20 assault vests.....5 portable occular IDers....and any updated protocols and training info. I have a couple officers that have recerts coming up and I need to know if there have been any changes in requirements." He took another sip of his coffee and winked at Alyssa over the edge of his cup. "Aren't you sorry you asked?" he said with a smirk.

Alyssa smiled, "Nope I'll check our store rooms to see if we have any of that on hand, otherwise I know a guy in Starfleet who can help us get our supplies quickly and what we actually request other than random stuff." Alyssa told him even as she turned off the recorder for supplies he had requested. "Anything else I can do for you?" She asked softly. She did enjoy meeting those that she would be working with.

Jack flashed a charming smile and said, "not that I can think of at the moment." He straightened up and held out his hand in a gentlemanly way of helping her to her feet. "May I contact you if I think of anything else?" he asked, his voice softening a bit from the professional tone.

Alyssa accept the offered help to her feet. "Of course." She said softly, it was her job to be available should any of the department heads need to let her know of anything they should need.

=^=CDR Devlin. You are needed on the agricultural deck.=^=

Jack smiled, apologetically, at Alyssa. "Looks like duty calls," he said. "It was nice to see you again. I will definitely be in touch," he said as he escorted her to the corridor. With a wave he hurried off in the opposite direction.

"Of course, and I need to see what the next department needs so if anything comes up." She said with a smile as he escort her from his office to the corridor, With a return wave she turned and started in the opposite direction.

Cannot work all day... Shifts End Matthews Quarters current/somewhere in-between
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Alyssa was exhausted from walking the station and talking with department heads to see what supplies were needed She would continue tomorrow if her assistant didn't get too far during the next shift. She stretched as she made her way through the door to her quarters where she found her daughter and Nikki playing shoots and ladders. She smiled as she removed her uniform jacket watching her daughter slide her piece down one of the shoots closest to the finish line.

"Mommy!" She was on her feet the second she saw her mommy and ran towards her to wrap her arms around her waist. "You're shift took too long." She pouted at her.

Alyssa hugged Sara tightly to her. "I know but it's over now until tomorrow." She smiled softly. "Did you have your dinner?" She asked looking down at her child running her hand through her hair.

"Yes and I ates it all, Nikki made Mac-n-Cheese and I had a bowl of peaches too." She smiled up at her mom "though the chocolate pudding she made is in the fridge it should be ready soon." She grinned excitedly at the idea.

Byrnes, finger combing his hair back, took a last look at the main station in engineering. There were over a dozen trouble spots that were at one point in the red. Now, four were now amber, meaning they were being seen to, and the other eight were green, denoting maintenance had been completed. Not that he trusted them to last long, but for now, all systems were acting as they should. Over time they would all receive his care and be seen to on a more permanent basis. Sighing, happy it was quitting time, Wulf gave the duty to his deck officer, then turned and left his domain. To say he was tired was an understatement, and after his private conference with the Doctor, wanted to go and try to find the strange alien named Nira. But, he had given his word to a child that he would at least stop by, and not one to shirk his own honor, made his way to the door of one Alyssa Matthews. He pressed the chime, finger combing his hair one more time.

Alyssa had showered and changed by the time her chime went off. She was wearing black sweat pants and a t-shirt when she answered the door. Before she could greet Wulf though, Sara came running passed her crying out "Wulf!" and threw herself into his arms happy to see him. She was in her Ariel PJ though it was about an hour before her bed time.

"Come on in Wulf." Alyssa said softly genuinely surprised to see him at her door. She had to admit to herself she hadn't been sure he'd actually show up not many men had proven themselves to even keep their word since Sara had been born.

"Hiya, firecracker," said Byrnes, smiling, and claw-tickling Sara's torso. He looked to mom. "Hi Alyssa, thank you." He came inside, and despite how tired he truly was, neither of them would know.

Sara laughed and giggled as he claw-tickled her. She squirmed, "nooo tickle!" She giggled still.

"Your welcome." Alyssa said softly, "Can I get you something to drink or eat?" She offered, "I was thinking of making a sandwich for my own dinner since Nikki took care of Sara about an hour or so ago." Alyssa explained.

"Sure," responded Wulf. "Been working steady all day, not a lot of time to stop and eat. And you," he tapped Sara's nose. "Good girl for eating your supper. Only way to grow big and strong." He smiled, throwing a wink at mom as Sara giggled again.

"I wanted to be on my best behavior so I could see you like we agreed." Sara admitted still hugging him with her arms around his neck despite all the tickling. "do you wanna play Candy Land with mommy and me?" She asked him.

Alyssa went back into the kitchen area of her family quarters. since the replicators weren't reliable at the moment she went to the fridge she had put in to store whatever food they didn't replicate or recycle until the replicators could be reliable. it was just one of those small ice boxes she had on the counter top from when she was at the Academy. Opening it she pulled out some honey roasted chicken provolone cheese and mayo. Grabbing the loaf of bread she made up two sandwiches for herself and Wulf. She cut them in half but managed to not cut the crust off like she was use to doing for Sara. Then she moved to join Wulf and Sara in the living area where Sara had lead him to see the Candy Land board.

Sitting down Byrnes gave a smile and wink to Sara, then grinned at Alyssa. "Well, I don't know how to play this. Believe it or not. But, I can try."

Sara giggled at that and proceed to show and teach Wulf the game of Candy Land so they could play together, "Now you've done it." Alyssa smirked poking him in the side. Alyssa set down the sandwiches and the drinks so that she and Wulf could eat while they played with Sara.

Byrnes knew what this was. Sara had a new friend, and she was jacked-up over it. So, Wulf split his attention between the two, but focused on the adult.

As the game progressed Sara yawned her eyes closing slightly looking as if she was going to fall asleep sitting right there at the board came struggling to stay awake to play the game to the end with Wulf and her mommy, but it was getting late and Alyssa had silently let her stay up a half an hour after her bed time. Alyssa had known she would tire herself out before too long. "Ok I think it's time for bed young lady." Alyssa said softly.

"Nooo not yet." Sara said sleepily, "I'm not sleeeeppy." She said even as she yawned again.

"Hey, Sara." Byrnes said, and when she looked over he gave her hand a squeeze. "There will be other days. I have to go to bed soon, too, nothing wrong with that. Be rested and you can play longer." He gave a smile and wink to the girl.

She blinked at him sleepily then yawned, "but I'm not sleepy.." She said even as she started to drift off and Alyssa moved to lift her into her arms. "She's always like that says she's not sleepy and then drifts right off to sleep." Alyssa said softly, "I'll go tuck her into bed real quick and be right back." She said softly carrying her six year old daughter to her room.

Byrnes waited patiently, loving the mind of a child. Obviously tired, knowing it, but still saying they aren't. Kind of reminded him of some of his engineers. Nothing comes easy.

With Nikki's help Sara was tucked into bed and her night light turned on. Nikki whom despite being a hologram went to her own room off the nursery room. Alyssa returned to the living area where Byrnes was waiting, "Thank you for humoring her." Alyssa said softly sitting down beside him.

"She's a kid," grinned Byrnes. "Play along, talk in an even voice, and they usually comply. Stern when needed, but she knew she was tired, so she didn't truly fight it, just voiced it."

"Very true, besides she's not worried about never seeing you again which would be the main reason she'd resist sleep." Alyssa smirked. "It still amazes me though how taken she is with you normally she ignores most men it's why she slipped away from Ferguson when she was in his care." Alyssa sighed.

Wulf gave a grin while rubbing his face to try and swipe away his own tiredness. "That's because I never forget what it was like being a kid. Most times I can see where they are coming from a light year away."

Alyssa smiled slightly as she watched him, "I can see that or should I tuck you into bed as well since your struggling to stay awake?" She asked in a teasing tone poking him in his side. "I see my little girl isn't the only one trying to stay up later." She said softly though she would be sad to see him leave, he was CEO of this station and they needed him at his best.

Giving a grin Wulf nodded. "I am tired, for sure. Not easy getting all this back in working order, enough to be called home." He stood and offered his hand to help her do so. "But, yes, I do need to go and get some shuteye."

Alyssa accepts the hand off the floor. "I will see you later then you get good nights rest their chief, and don't make me come tuck you in we need our CEO aware and alive or this 'home' is going to fall apart." She teased him gently walking him to the door easily. "good night Wulf." She said softly at the door.

"Good night." With a final nod Byrnes stepped out into the corridor and made his way towards his own quarters.

Come Fly With Me Shuttlebay One Eight Hours after 'A Failure to Communicate'
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Christopher was sitting in the shuttle-bay in front of a maintenance station. His thoughts were running at a million kilometers per hour and he was hitting brick walls at every turn as he tried to figure out how they could attach any form of a secondary transmitter onto the runabout without turning a spacially dynamic craft into a flying tank. Flipping through the possibilities, he saw holographic representations that continually were being shot down by the computer since slipstream forces were ripping off the attachments or being slagged by errant radiation. Sighing in frustration, Chris ran his hands through his hair.

Byrnes, checking out a warp shuttle at one end of the bay saw the General with that face, the face one recognizes as frustration. Setting his tools down he walked over. "You okay, Sir?"

Christopher gave a wry chuckle. "I only wish, Lieutenant. I've been doing some simulations and our emitter keeps getting fried or explodes rather spectacularly whenever we try to use it. It also doesn't help that combined with every other piece of equipment, it ruins the spatial geometry." he said, handing over the PADD to Byrnes.

Alyssa joined the two officers at the shuttle, noticing everyone looking considerably frustrated she arched one elegantly shaped brow, "Everyone alright?" She asked with her tool box in hand. "Hmmm sounds like your simulations have given you some very sad endings Captain." She did not like the sound of those endings either.

Taking the PADD, Byrnes looked at the data, then the schematics, taking a few minutes on each as he absentmindedly rubbed his chin and lower lip. "We can do this, General. It will take work, I won't deny that, but all we need is to set aside one runabout and then add in reinforcing support struts and brackets on the interior. Essentially, Sir, a roll-cage. It will reinforce the structural integrity, and if done right we can create a hard point for the transmitter to seat."

Alyssa moved to look over Wulf's shoulder, "Sounds like a shark cage in a way just in a ship instead of a cage. with the reinforced structural integrity it should work to get the job done." Alyssa agreed with Wulf.

Byrnes nodded to her, looking at Mitchell. "As I said, it'll be some work but it can be done, Sir. I can dedicate a team and start the cutting and fitting for the braces."

"I can reallocate some supplies until the next supply transfer arrives," Alyssa said softly.

Christopher nodded thoughtfully. "What materials were you thinking of using, Mister Byrnes?" he asked, running some basic mathematic calculations in his head. They would need enough of a material that could withstand both intense temperatures of the dragon's fire that it could come into contact with, spatial distortions, and wouldn't deteriorate when exposed to radiation over time. "Also, to build on reinforced hard points, wouldn't we need to build a completely new shuttle?" Christopher continued, tapping his fingers together impatiently.

Alyssa listened since she wasn't exactly an engineer she only knew basic engineering this was beyond her. however the allocations of supplies she could do with her eyes closed.

"Duranium alloy, Sir," Byrnes stated. "There are hard points, but those are already able to withstand many of the effects you speak of. With the refit, we would be adding to that. It will make the interior cramped, but if it is done right then the hull would be our only concern. However, most starships can withstand the corona of stars for a short amount of time and these dragons may have fire breath, but I doubt it is equal to the power of a sun."

Chris tapped the pen he was holding against the PADD. "I recall them firing superheated plasma, so duranium should definitely work. What do you think, 15-millimeter reinforcements should do it."

At this point, Alyssa was mostly listening to what they were talking about she was leaving the calculations to hull reinforcement to the expert which was Wulf.

"Sir," said Byrnes. "I'll make it 20 millimeters, just because." He ran calculations through his head. "If we can keep them from getting irritated and heading this way then I will start immediately. Could take the better part of a day, but I won't quit until it's done." Giving his superior an honest gaze, he added. "However, I may have to cannibalize duranium from non-essential areas. Either way, we can make this work, Sir."

Chris nodded. He liked the man's commitment to what needed to be done. "Get it handled. If I can help in any way, let me know. In the meantime, I'll be in the Ops Center."

"Of course, Sir." Byrnes glanced at Matthews, then back to the General. "I'll be needing her help if that can be arranged."

"If I can help I'll be happy to do so," Alyssa said softly.

Byrnes nodded when Matthews spoke. "More hands make less work."

"Do what you have to. I'll inform Chief Sullivan so he can make the change to the duty rotation. This project will take priority over all others, understood?" he asked, already knowing the answer. He waited patiently for their response.

"Aye Sir," Alyssa said softly.

Byrnes nodded. "Yes, Sir."

Not What Was Expected Commanding General's Office TBD
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Ferguson accompanied Lady Catherine to the Command Deck. He had remained silent during the walk to meet with Christopher and Lord Jacobi. He paused outside the door to Christopher's Office. He looked at the door and then to Lady Catherine. "Would you like me to go in with you, Poppit?"

"It could be advisable." She admitted with a smile.

Ferguson gave Lady Catherine a single nod of his head and then depressed the door chime to announce their arrival.

Christopher looked up from a supply request. "Enter!" he commanded

Lord Jacobi sat comfortably in one of the pair of chairs flanking the front of Christopher's desk. He looked at his daughter and former employee as they entered, a PADD idly turning in his hand. His expression was one of calm expectation.

Ferguson settled into a comfortable stance behind Lady Catherine. His quiet demeanor obviously in support of the Waddington he was currently employed by.

Lord Jacobi piqued an eyebrow in Ferguson's direction, followed by a glance at his daughter. He finally placed the PADD in his hand on Christopher's desk. "Brigidier apologies General Mitchell. This PADD contains two sets of separate orders from both the President and Secretary of State for the United Federation of Planets. Both sets have the appropriate signatures by those parties." He gave his daughter a quick glance before returning his attention to Christopher. "One set of orders is for my dau...Ambassador Waddington to return to the Alpha Quadrant for reassignment within the Federation Diplomatic Corps."

Lord Jacobi held up a hand. "The other set of orders makes Catherine's position here permanent and expands her authority to establish binding diplomatic ties with any and all societies you may encounter in the Delta Quadrant." He turned to Catherine almost positive as to which set she would confirm. "The decision is entirely your Catherine."

"I'm staying," Catherine stated. No semblance of diplomacy in her tones. "And the next time you try to use your influence to move me to where you want me, your grace. I would strongly suggest you ask me first."

Christopher clasped his hands together and leaned forward slightly. "First of all, Ambassador, you had absolutely no right to contact the Diplomatic Corps. Under Starfleet and Federation regulations, Lady Waddington falls under my command as a tenant and all personnel decisions regarding her will go through me. Also, don't ever interrupt me again. Do either and I'll have you on your way back to Earth, do I make myself clear, Your Excellency?" he said, dropping the niceties. It was becoming quite tiresome to see interference in his chain of command and he wasn't going to have any of it.

Lord Jacobi seemed nonplussed by the reaction of either Catherine or Christopher. He looked first to Catherine. "Your mother was the one to use her influence to obtain the reassignment back to Earth." He then turned towards Christopher. "I know my daughter well enough, that any such move that wasn't her choice...would cause her distress...which is why I used my make sure she had the choice of assignments."

"I assume I am free to leave General?" Catherine asked her voice as chilly as an icy tundra.

Christopher loosened his jaw. "You'd be incorrect. Take a seat and we'll proceed."

Catherine sat down. "I am amazed my mother extended her influence from beyond the grave. When did the Federation decide to use Ouiji boards?" Catherine asked irritably.

Stifling a chuckle, Christopher sat back and awaited the senior Ambassador's response. Could it be that the man was going crazy or had simply suffered from a slip of the tongue.

Lord Jacobi faced his daughter, a disciplined expression cemented on his face. "Your mother told me to always protect you any way I could. She, also it seems, extracted that same promise from various fellow members of the FDC, two of whom now hold position as President of the United Federation of Planets and as Secretary of State. I convinced them to issue both sets of order...allowing you the choice of staying here or coming home and taking my seat on the Federation Council."

"My mother told you to drop dead as she handed you divorce papers and to be honest until i got to an age that I could be useful in your office Fergie raised me not you so please get on a shuttle and go back to the AQ"

Christopher watched as the elder Waddington looked to him, then to Ferguson, then to his daughter, searching for some shred of support or reassurance. Finding none, he saw the older mans shoulders slump as he set his gaze on Chris, his steel gray eyes burning with a quiet but contained fury.

"Well, you heard the woman, Ambassador. I'll schedule your flight back to the Alpha Quadrant at the earliest possible time. In the meantime, I'll ask you not to interfere in diplomatic operations aboard the station. Should you decide to do so, I will not hesitate to confine you to your quarters until your departure. Dismissed." Christopher said matter-of-factly.

Lord Jacobi looked about the room and taking note of the various expressions. He gave a single nod to Christopher as he rose from his seat. "I shall return to my ship and await departure there." He turned to his daughter. "Sign whichever order you want and transmit it prior to my ship's departure." He then rose from his seat and promptly departed.

Ferguson let out a long sigh. He looked first at Lady Catherine and then to Christopher. "I will escort Lord Waddington back to his ship with your permission General Mitchell."

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Draco Dormiens Nunquam Titillandus Runabout 2312-78 Callsign: Excalibur 12 Hours Following 'Come Fly With Me'
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Christopher sat down in the pilot's seat of the modified runabout, flicking switches and tapping consoles as he ran through the preflight checks for the mission. As he carefully brought each system online, he tapped the PADD on his knee that checked off each step that was needed to get the craft off of the ground. Continuing his delicate dance, he sat down in his chair and checked some additional relays before he pressed a blinking indicator on the console, which sent a barely perceptible hum through the deck plates that signified the engines were starting. Opening a comm channel, Christopher spoke.

"This is Mitchell to all senior staff. Spearhead flight is now departing. If you wish to participate, report to Hangar Bay Two. Skids up in ten mikes. Mitchell, Out."

Alyssa had helped with allocating resources for the modified runabout. If allowed, Alyssa wanted to be there when the mission took place. Alyssa sighed leaning against the lift wall wondering if she was putting too much of herself forward or not. Considering she was merely an operations officer mostly needed to requisition supplies, allocate those supplies and the energy needed by different departments.

Cara was on her way to the officer's mess when she heard the announcement. She very much wanted to go along because she wanted to make sure the dragons weren't harmed. She tapped her combadge and said, "make it 15 and I'll be there General," then she turned and headed to the ER to gather some supplies.

Wulf, still doing spot welds within his armored runabout, sat up and leaned his back against a chair for relaxation, sighing out as he spoke to the intercom. "Already aboard and waiting for the passengers, General."

Alyssa made her way over to the shuttle, tapping her comm-badge, "Heading aboard the shuttle now General." she waved to Wulf as she made her way on. "anything I can do to help with last minutes spot checks?" She asked him.

Wulf gave a nod of hello. "We should be good, but never hurts to check a system or two."

"Roger that," Alyssa said moving to help him check the systems before the preflight could be initiated.

Cara rushed through the bay doors a few minutes late and hurried over to the runabout. "Sorry for the delay," she said as she took her seat and set her case on the floor.

"Don't worry I just got here myself." Alyssa gave Cara a friendly smile.

"So, we're going to get a closer look at our dragons?" Cara said, feeling excited about the possibilities of seeing a real space dragon up close.

Christopher nodded. "Yep. As close as we can at least."

Wulf's tone was friendly, but a hint of sarcasm. "I hope they don't mind a bunch of bipeds trying to look up their skirts."

Christopher leaned over the console as he checked the engine output. "They might but we'll find a way. I'm sealing the doors now. Flight Crew, stand by for final pre-flight checks." Christopher began tapping his console and listened as the doors on the runabout closed.

"Activate Interlocks."

"Done," said Byrnes, tapping keys.

"Connect Dynatherms."

"Connected." Wulf tapping keys.

"Switch Infracell position to 'Up'"

"Position ascended," responded Byrnes.

"Confirm thrusters are go."

Wulf looked over. "We're in the green, Sir."

Christopher nodded. "Roger that. All systems green. We are commencing liftoff."

The smooth male voice of a Dockmaster could be heard over the cockpit speakers. "Excalibur Flight, you are cleared for departure on heading Zero Niner Zero. Departure control, out."

Christopher tapped the console to put the runabout on autopilot for a moment and turned to face everyone. "To keep this brief, our job here is simple- attempt to communicate with our reptilian friends out in the asteroid field and convince them to leave. If they refuse or begin to pose a threat to navigation traffic or operations, I've been authorized to deploy a modified quantum torpedo designed for penetration detonation. If anyone is opposed, let me know now and I'll note it in my log."

"Authorized by whom, General?" Cara asked, not liking the idea of destroying a life form that had been here long before they had and that had a stroke of bad luck...chose an asteroid adjacent to the Rock to nest in.

Alyssa frowned at the thought of possibly destroying a life that had been here long before they thought to come to the base that had been sitting here waiting for occupation. "Is there no other choice? like creating a distraction and having someone move their asteroid further away?" Alyssa asked biting her lower lip.

Byrnes listened to the ladies, his own thoughts similar, but with one added addition. The Borg had nearly annihilated all of them, and now it was a fight for survival. If these dragons had bred and found a nest, then it stood to reason that there were others throughout the galaxy. "I don't like it either, Sir. But, if there is one mated pair then it stands to reason that there are others. All efforts should be some kind of agreement, but if they pose a threat to my life, I will defend it."

Christopher thought about how best to answer the question. "Someone much higher than me at Starfleet Command gave that authorization. While I want to do what we can to relocate these things peacefully, I can't question the fact that they may pose a danger to operations within our immediate vicinity and it's our job to eliminate that danger. Trust me. I've been thinking about the options and unfortunately, there aren't many-"

The console began to beep as they inched closer to the asteroid housing their target. Christopher deftly tapped the console and cut power to the engines. He spoke without turning back. "Mister Byrnes cut power to non-essential systems and divert power to shields, weapons, sensors, and our comm system."

Hands seemingly floating over the consoles Byrnes tapped keys and slid others around, all that Mitchell had asked for now done. "General, I'll cut life support by 20% and shunt that power to defenses. It'll be a bit cooler in here and a bit bumpier with the inertial dampeners lowered, but it gives added power. I could put part of it into maneuvering thrusters, if need be, Sir."

Alyssa helped Bynes with the transfer of power from non-essential Systems. She did not like it but, Wulf was right if it came down to her life, and the life of her daughter she would fight anything that tried to harm her daughter or leave her daughter without a mother.

Continuing to tap the console, he entered a command that caused his chair to move dead center and forward and his side consoles to move in close so that he had what could best be described as an approximation of a fighter cockpit to make it easier to pilot. As a final piece of the transformation, a control column elevated out of a console to his right. Settling in, he began flipping switches and noticed the lights switch from the soft white to dark red.

"Okay, let's take her in nice and slow."

She only hoped that this could go as planned and not as prepared for.

"Slow your speed, Sir," advised Byrnes. "Imagine an unknown rushing towards your children. See it the same way, General."

Christopher pulled back slightly on the stick to reduce their speed as he approached the mouth of a cave that they would be entering. This would be like threading a needle the further they tried to proceed between the craggy rocks and slightly annoyed reptiles. "Ops, power up optical and millimeter wave scanners and open a channel to Ops. They might want to see this."

As one of the dragons perched on a peak of lava and spread its wings, Cara sat forward and said, "my God. She's beautiful."

Alyssa had been so entranced by the dragon spreading its wing that she almost didn't respond. "Yes sir." she breath powering up the optical and millimeter wave scanners. "Channel opened sir." She said as she finished.

"There be Dragons.. what the hell " Michael said as he looked at what he was seeing as he crossed his arms over his chest " I don't think it is a good idea staying in there General even though those things look big as a house there is always something bigger around the corner " he stated as he watched.

Alyssa looked over her shoulder to Michael understanding his concerns she was keeping an eye on the sensors at the moment. She did not like to be surprised so she was making sure that they weren't caught unawares.

As the shuttle moved passed the asteroid, the dragon moved in the same direction...keeping itself between the shuttle and the tip of the formation it was perched on....wings spread but not flailing or showing any other signs of aggression.

"She's protecting her nest," Cara said, quietly. "She must either have eggs or young." She looked around for the dragon's mate. "Dad must be out hunting." Shaking her head she said, "General....I don't believe they mean us harm. They are just protecting their family. If we could just give the asteroid a gentle push out of our traffic zone....they will probably leave us alone."

"Really.. something that could bite the shuttle in half and not care about it.. I'm sorry Commander I believe that the shuttle needs to return and leave them be " Michael said to Cara " I have a bad feeling about this, they are unknown they are big as hell and When you don't know the enemy it is best to back off and learn them " Michael added.

Christopher spoke up. "Negative. I have orders to get them to communicate and leave. If all else fails, we use force. I'm not sure if you've all forgotten but we're not in a position to run." Flicking a switch to force the runabout to hover, he turned. "Ops, start the music and let's have ourselves a dance."

"We've reinforced the structure to this shuttle," Alyssa tried to reassure Michael. "Aye, sir." Alyssa said softly her fingers moving with confidence to start up the music sequence they had been working on. "hope everyone likes a little music." She said softly as it started to play.

Hearing the hum of the communications device starting up and transmitting, Chris gripped the stick tightly to hold them steady. He kept an eye out of the viewport as he watched multiple creatures turn to face them with what Christopher thought was a curious look which quickly turned to a hungry glint. Maintaining his hold on the throttle and stick, he waited as they inched closer, still slightly curious.

"If anyone has any thoughts, now would be the time to voice them," Christopher said, fighting the urge to apply full reverse thrust and get the hell out of there.

"She's probably never heard music before," Cara said. "Wait....look," she pointed out the window. The dragon had stopped leaning forward and get wings, although still extended, were less threatening. Her head tilted one way and the other.

Byrnes looked around at all those in the bridge. "Perhaps we rang the dinner bell? Nira will laugh at us, a belly laugh, for being so stupid."

Christopher forced the runabout to hover again and turned to the team. "Activate the translator and let them know we mean them no harm."

"Aye, Sir activating translator now," Alyssa said as she moved to activate it watching the dragons with fascination, not fear.

"Skipper," said Byrnes. "I would keep shields and weapons on standby. Activating them might be detectable and we're already causing some anxiety. Look at the flight patterns of the dragons, tighter and they have put themselves directly in our flight path to the asteroid. There is something worth protecting by them within it."

Another dragon appeared in the distance. Its form seeming almost luminous against the blackness of space. "Here comes, daddy." Cara said, pointing in the direction of the approaching dragon. It flew over the shuttle with only inches to spare under its massive wings and joined its mate on the asteroid. "They're definitely protecting a nest," Cara added. "The female does seem to be calming down a bit. I don't suggest we advance, though."

"We could sit a moment see if the translation gets their attention that we're not a threat and only here to help??" Alyssa agreed with Cara, those dragons were huge, and beautiful. But there were clearly enough of them here to suggest this was possibly their breeding grounds. "Could it be that our station is in the middle of dragon breeding territory?" She wondered aloud.

Wulf, giving a sigh of frustration, stood up and went around the fancy pilot's seat, to stand directly in the front viewport/window. One hand up on the frame casually, the other bracing his lean over the main console, his eyes looking at the dragons. "Computer, tie my voice in with the music and continue to run the universal translator. Now."

"Acknowledged," answered the computer.

Byrnes moved his hand in the window, seeing the dragons squint and focus on the puny morsel now trying to get their attention. "Greetings to you and your mate. We don't know what to call you but with our species you resemble creatures from our past known as dragons, so we are referring to you as that. We mean no harm to you or your young, but you have put your nest within a danger zone of our territory. We would like to aid you in moving the nest somewhere safer for all. If you understand what is being said, please let us know." He then looked back over his shoulder and shrugged to his companions. "It was worth a try, so now we see what happens."

Alyssa looked to Byrnes impressed that he'd gotten up and just laid everything out on the table between them and the Dragons. Her fingers moved over the console as she waited for a response from the Dragons hoping that it will be good response, but was prepared for the outcome to not be so favorable. she hated the thought of fighting these magnificent creatures. However, with Alyssa's daughter on the station she'd die before letting harm come to it.


OOC: So we're going to detect something big. Probably a mom who isn't too pleased with the fact that we're approaching
OOC: has anyone detected the large mama dragon? (I thought that's the one we're seeing.) (I wasn't sure sorry)
OOC Byrnes: I thought there was just two. If there is a third, say...inside the asteroid, perhaps mom and dad used there plasma breath/weapon to turn the stone into slag for warmth for the young, a thermal reaction. If they can survive in space I'm sure molten rock wouldn't do much to their scales.
OOC Alyssa: That sounds about right to be honest. Dragons on most TV shows or movies do just that they burn the ground in some way before nesting like Toothless in how to train your dragon he burned the ground in a circle with his fire breath so he could nap. well that and to keep Hiccup at bay lol