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Boarding Party

Posted on Tue Mar 12th, 2013 @ 2:01am by Lieutenant Commander David Burkeson

Mission: Part of the Team
Location: Bridge, USS Steadfast
Timeline: Several hours after "Bag Limit"

ON

"Full sensor sweep completed, Sir."

"Thank you, Vrock." Burkeson said, "Looks like it's not going to blow up in our faces. Not while we're over here, anyway. Time to go over and take a look. Burkeson to Engineering."

Jar'Ho had been leaned over working on a panel. He stood up. "Jar'Ho here, go ahead."

"Lieutenant, I'm heading over to the smuggler ship. Would you care to join me?"

"Absolutely. I'll be there in a moment." He turned to a crewman. "Keep working. I want this place ship shape by the time I get back."

"I thought as much. Dress code is evening environmental suit. Burkeson out." Burkeson said with a smile, "Pat, you have the conn. Have the Chief, three Security specialist team and Mister Rattei meet us in Transporter Room One. Place the ship at maximum safe beaming range and keep all shields up at full power except the segment we beam through. Keep that segment facing the ship and be prepared to yaw and plug the hole if need be. There's still a chance that ship will cook off and no guarantee we'll have time to call if it happens."

"Is this wise, Sir?" Pat asked, "Wouldn't it be smarter to tow it in as is?"

"No." Burkeson said, in a tone that brooked no argument, "We can't tow through a shield, Pat, so I'm not hauling a risk like that all set to go off right behind our main engineering section until I'm confidant it's safe. We can't leave it here for just anyone to find and we can't really afford to sit on it until someone else comes, given the current circumstances. So, in my judgement, we have to scope it out. Anything untoward happens, take command and return the ship to DS 12 pending further orders, understood?"

"Yes Commander." Pat said dejectedly, "Good luck."

"Thanks Pat. See you soon!" Burkeson replied before ducking off the bridge and heading for the transporter room.

As expected, he found Rattei waiting there with his E-Suit and EVA kit. He began to suit up as the others filtered in. When they were all assembled, he spoke to the group.

"Some of you will know some of this already, so please bear with me while I put us all on the same page. That ship over there showed a signature very similar to C'hakalian drive technology when it was preparing to go to warp. That technology has been proven to operate at higher levels of efficiency than Federation drives, making their ships some of the fastest in the known galaxy. We don't know why, because an aggressive self destruct mechanism has destroyed every C'hakalian ship Starfleet ever came close to capturing. We've done all we can from over here to ensure that there isn't such a system in place, but there's no way to be sure without direct examination."

"We also know that the ship was souped up for sudden, high speed acceleration and maneuvering by tying the power plant and drives into the shield capacitors for extra storage and modding the shields for absorption and re-tasking of energy. This is a high risk modification in a civilian ship. We do it, the capacitor trick anyway, but Starfleet engineers are several cuts above the average freebooter and Defiants are designed for that kind of hot-rodding. That ship over there is a basic free trader pushed way beyond it's rated specs."

"We're also going to have to be very careful about structural damage and further system overloads. If you encounter any active systems, shut them down immediately if you can. All investigation is to be done with our own instrumentation only. That ship needs to do nothing but sit placidly in space while we tow it in and I'd just as soon not have a single system aboard her under power while we do. We stopped her with low yield quantum torpedoes set to proximity detonate near high energy concentrations, which damaged the drives and several of the overloaded shield capacitors. From what followed, it looks like the ship suffered a catastrophic feedback loop through those excessively interlinked systems, so treat any panel or grid with power in it like a potential bomb. We just don't know what's holding what together over there."

"There will also be bodies. We haven't been able to fully interrogate the prisoners yet, but what we have gotten suggests that there are seven more crew over there, including the entire Engineering staff. Don't mess with any bodies, just scan them with your tricorders for the record and move on. Our priority is to secure the ship. We also can't be one hundred percent sure that there are no survivors over there, possibly in EVA suits like us. It's a smuggler ship and has sensor-obscuring elements built right into it's superstructure creating blind spots. I want tactical movement at all times. We're going to work in pairs, with Security covering the rest of us as we work. Anybody pops out, put 'em down fast."

"I'll start at the bridge, Jar'Ho, you take Engineering and Chief Fraser, you do a general damage control sweep. Because of the dangers inherent in this operation, Mr. Rattei is going to maintain an active lock on all of us while we're over there. We'll maintain an open comm channel at all times between each other and the ship and keep each other informed about where we are and what we see. Jobar, anybody sings out or your whiskers start twitching too hard, you beam us all out, no questions asked. Ditto if anyone's comm link goes out. We can always go back later if it's a false alarm. Understood."

From his perch on the transporter console, the little Squea'kaar nodded and chirped, "You can count on me, Commander!"

"I know we can." Burkeson replied. Then, addressing the group, he added "Any questions?"

Jar'Ho nodded. "You want us to go in, power down the ship and eliminate any survivors?"

"No...my apologies Jar'Ho, I should have been more clear in my language." Burkeson said, "survivors are to be stunned and secured, then transported back to the ship. Kill only as a last resort.

"Okay, I will attempt to capture any survivors."

"Anything else?" Burkeson said to the group.

"All right then...let's do this."

OFF

 

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