Task Group Gamma > Season One Missions

S1M4 - Autopoiesis

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Tess tLhoell:
[USS Amalthea - Deck 6 - Commander Moreno's quarters]

Tess stepped into her father's room with a gentle smile on her lips. The nurse looked up and stepped back from the person sitting motionless in the armchair.

"Go ahead and take a little break while I'm here," Tess told her.

"Sure, Captain."

While the Ensign left the quarters, Tess stepped closer and sat down in the chair next to her father. His mouth hung wide open and he stared rather impassively ahead. The shard of the sphere that had pierced his head had injured the part of the brain responsible for controlling the speech and chewing apparatus. As a result, Fabiano had lost the ability to speak and move his mouth independently. He would have to learn again. He also needed help with eating. Tess had tried to be with him at all meals. But she had quickly realized with frustration that it was almost impossible. Benjin, Tamonar, and even Rahul were also often with him, for which Tess was grateful.

"How are you today?" she asked her father, placing a hand on his as she smiled warmly at him. He looked to her and moved his lower jaw slightly, his tongue twitching and an awkward sound coming out. She didn't understand what he was saying, but the way he looked at her told her that he was doing well so far. Some saliva dripped out of the corner of his mouth and Tess took a cloth to gently wipe it away.

"Rayek is doing better, too," she told him. "He was really lucky." Everyone who had survived was lucky. Many splinters that had been torn out and thrown around by the force of the explosion had become dangerous projectiles. Surely the EV suit had prevented worse, too. "The investigation into the explosion is still ongoing. However, it looks like it was caused on purpose." Kemala had been right after all. But Tess didn't tell her father about that. She didn't want to burden him with too much. Tess had also not yet introduced Kemala to Fabiano. She wasn't sure how she would react to her father's disability. She didn't want to put him through that kind of stress.

Once again, she looked at her father, stroked his hand with a smile, and then walked over to the replicator to get him something to eat. "We're on our way to the P-161 system right now," she continued. With a bowl of hot soup in her hand, she came back and sat down. "I want us to get on with our normal business quickly. I want the crew to know that it always goes on even when bad things happen." She looked at Fabiano and faltered. She didn't know herself where she was getting the strength from at the moment. Admittedly, sometimes she cried herself to sleep in Rayek's arms. He was her greatest support at the moment, although he had to cope with some things himself.

The knowledge that his sister and brother were still alive was still something that made Tess so happy. And that even his childhood friend Latihk had survived the horrible assault that supposed to kill him all those years ago. There was something good in the disasters that had happened recently after all.

Mas Molane:

USS Amalthea - Bridge

Mas' eyes were on the Master Systems Display on the bridge, but he found that he was unable to focus on any particular.  It was good that T'Pan had recovered and was watching over Engineering.  She was good at her job, having amply proven her worth in the last mission.  The ship needed that, because only one thought had purchase in the Lurian's mind:

Verlok is dead.

People had died on missions before, of course.  But Verlok had been a classmate at the Academy.  A friend.  He, Ora, and Mas had come up together as part of the same graduating class, moving in the same circles.  Often, they ate a meal together.  Shared jokes.  Well, Mas shared jokes.  Ora stared and Verlok arched eyebrows.

Now for Verlok to just be... gone... it was hard to fathom.  Hard to process.

On the MSD, a problem arose.  A minor EPS fluctuation.  A moment later, T'Pan fixed it. 

Mas just continued to stare, not seeing.

Perhaps he should have asked for the day off.

But... no.  Everyone else had to work through this.  Why should he be special?

Shaking his head, he tried to focus on the work at hand.  If nothing else, it was what Verlok would have wanted.

Rayek tr'Lhoell:
Cmdr Rayek tr'Lhoell
[USS Amalthea - Deck 4 - Bridge]

The bridge was quiet.  Rayek wasn’t certain if that was a reflection on how focused the officers were on their routine tasks, or more because the crew were still feeling the loss of one of their one.  He glanced over to the science station knowing full well he wouldn’t see the stiff back of the sesquipedalian Vulcan.  It’s absence was solely on him and he felt it keenly.

In its place was yet another fresh from the Academy ensign.  A Caitian woman named Mitumba.  Rayek didn't know much about the woman as he hadn't yet had time to read up on her personnel file or do his preferred 'meet and greet.  All he knew was that she was replacing people he, through inaction, had failed to protect.  So many had been injured because of him.  Guilt was often in his heart.

But there was so much more than that, Rayek was dealing with a kaleoscope of emotions recently.  The discovery of his sister, Kemala, and his best friend, Latihk, having survived the Hobus blast had him literally in happy tears when he first awoke a few days ago from his injuries.  Even Taheen was alive and present - though her presence caused him a bit of worry and was less joyous given Tess was aware of his proposal to the woman years back.  He didn't want Tess jealously worrying about his fidelity.  But the unexpected trio of Romulan's from his past also brought the somber news that he was being targeted by the Tal'Shiar (his former occupation), and that the explosion on the shuttle may have been due to that.   

A week had passed and yet there were no definitive answers as yet.  This was unacceptable!
 
Rising from his seat, Rayek walked towards the back of the Bridge where Lieutenant Molane was staring somewhat vacantly at the Master System's Display. 

"Mr. Molane, can you refresh me on what your engineers have found in the wreckage of the Kourete?

Paul Wessex:
USS Amalthea - Bridge

"Understood and agreed; I'm allocating an increase of another 15% to Palette F sensors" Lt Paul Wessex confirmed to Science Lab 1. "You have this until 1400; after which Stellar Cartography will need the extra for increased resolution." The acknowledgement was subdued but professional, and the Operations Officer could understand why.

It had been a week since the crew, of whom he had joined a few days ago, had suffered a loss of one of their own. Wessex keenly understood the emotions that were likely being felt but all - albeit in various degrees. He hadn't known this Lt Verlok, but he was one of two leading Science Officers that had been a casualty in a recent mission; one fatal, the other... all but.

Being a naturally open and optimistic individual (sans a recent blip which, for all its downsides, had finally brought him to where he wanted to be: aboard a starship), it was hard to be so without coming across badly amongst the late officer's colleagues and his senior officers. And so, Paul carefully timed the ebbs and flows of the Bridge.

One such example was a minor fluctuation of an EPS secondary conduit, scant moments later. The drop in plasma supply didn't impact shipboard systems of any significant note, and although protocol suggested he report such to the Chief Engineer, who had been staring at the large diagram of the ship at the back of the Bridge - a live overview of all ship systems - it was immediately corrected by staff in Engineering; the fault briefly visible on the display, and yet Lt Molane made no effort nor comment. Paul, therefore, merely made a note in the log, and added a personal reminder to bring it up at the next ship performance overview meeting.

Morose moments aside, however, Paul gazed from his station to the viewscreen, a star field before him, stretching into infinity. Perhaps less beautiful than many seas he had been brought up - and served - beneath, the view nevertheless offered opportunities infinitum; opportunities he had sacrificed two careers now to seize upon.

Right now, it was worth it.

Tess tLhoell:
[USS Amalthea - Deck 4 - Bridge]

The ship had been restlessly making its way to the next previously unexplored star system, P-161, for the past week. The overriding mission of the crew was to find new allies in the Gamma Quadrant, at best someone who might have the ability through new technology to open the wormhole; for with all the advancement and immense knowledge of Federation scientists and engineers, that was something that had yet to be achieved.

Into the silence of the bridge, signals soon sounded on the various consoles as the ship moved into the closest proximity of the still unknown star system and was only a few hundred thousand kilometers away.


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