Saturday, September 5, 2009

[USS Charon] SD240909.05 - Personal BackLog "Out of the Dark" Part III - CHO - Sakarra Tyrax

Commander Ranil Ranasinghe stared with bafflement at the Vulcan pilot who had 'dropped in' so unexpectedly and felt a rather inappropriate urge to chuckle.
'Nerves, I guess. But in a very weird way, this really is funny.'
"Granted." He nodded as calmly as he could towards the young woman who promptly stepped off the transporter platform. Just from looking at her, you'd never have thought she'd just blown up her own fighter, pulled off a mad one-in-ten thousand chance last second emergency beamout and then spent over a minute drifting in the cold vacuum outside a space station under attack. By three Valdore type warbirds nonetheless, however mildly banged up those might be at the moment.
In fact, not one strand of her tightly braided and coiled hair seemed out of place and if there was an unusual slowness about her pulling the gloves off her hands - such small, slender hands, too. Gods, he'd be afraid shaking them lest he'd break something - it could well be attributed to thoughtfulness. Only the eyes, outwardly as calm as those of any Vulcan Ranil knew, gleamed with an odd intensity.
He became aware that he had been staring - although he sure was not the only one - and pulled himself together.
"Status, Mr Donegal."
"She inna goin' to hold, Commander. Not for much longer anyways. And as for our phasers, well three weeks and about half a engineerin' corps oughta do it."
Thrandasar stirred and it was obvious she wanted to say something.
Sutok's gentle but firm hand on her shoulder seemed to convince her she could talk without moving and her antennae only twitched briefly in annoyance.
"What about the deflector, sir?"
"Aye, lass. I saw what you were tryin' to do there an' it might of worked, too. But we've already thrown in the kitchen sink. We try to hit 'em over the head that way, we'll be tearin' ourselves apart in the process. If it works at all."
The Vulcan woman had silently moved towards the observation windows and Ranil saw her tilt her head as Thrandasar muttered some not so nice words in Andorian.
"Options?" Ranil didn't think there were many, but it couldn't hurt to ask. If anyone could come up with a crazy idea, it were the people assembled here. Including the still figure by the window who was probably the craziest of them all. Except maybe for Thrandasar but that woman played in a league all of her own.
For several long seconds, no one answered. Then Sutok looked up from where he was kneeling by the Andorian engineer's side, having done all he could here for the moment.
"Do we know the Seleya's status?"
"Doctor, she's in just as bad a shape as we are. Maybe worse." Lieutenant Sithundë stated, throwing a glance in the other Vulcan's direction who nodded thoughtfully.
"Repair estimate for the warp engines is 18.7 minutes, shields at 17%, phasers at 8% nominal output." her voice was as calm as if she were reporting the weather.
"Current?" Sutok asked, getting up and slowly approaching the young woman, medical tricorder in hand.
She nodded again and Ranil figured how nice it must be sometimes to be a telepath. Or not, considering that would mean you'd also know when ... oh gods. The sick feeling in his stomach told Ranil it might not be wise to ponder the theoretical question of what it would feel like, sensing someone die while you were in telepathic contact.
"What are you getting at, Mr Sutok?"
Commander Ranasinghe found himself somewhat intrigued by the interaction between the two Vulcans. His chief medical officer was the only one of his species on this station, and one who didn't look like people usually expected either. Short by even human standards, with light brown hair and hazel eyes, there was an obvious contrast between him and the slender, dark woman he was examining right now.
But their behavior was that of two people very nicely in sync with one another, subtle as it was. A questioning look here, a tiny wave of a hand there, if you didn't pay attention for even a second you'd miss it completely.
Ranil had often thought that the doctor would probably feel right at home at a Buddhist monastery, there was a sort of silent, calm cheerfulness about the man as if he was in on some kind of universal joke. Even now the CMO, occasionally referred to as "Pint-sized Vulcan" by Mr Donegal, still radiated a sort of "It'll be alright" attitude although Ranil had no idea how he managed that. Logic alone should tell even this guy that …
"Considering all factors, Commander," Sutok had finished his scans of the young woman and went hunting for something in his med-kit, presumably a hypo-spray "it would seem logical to evacuate any non-essential personnel to a vessel which has a chance of escaping."
"A chance, lad?" the Chief Engineer huffed with exasperation "did you listen to that pilot or am I in the wrong line o' work? There's NO way they'll get that pretty bucket to warp before them bloody Rommies fix their stuff and finish what they started."
"Indeed there will be a need to improvise." again, Ranil almost missed it. When Sutok approached the woman, hypo-spray in hand, she moved almost imperceptibly. One… two … another look exchanged, "I'm fine" versus "And who is the doctor here?" and Sutok's stubbornness won out again.
"If you're thinking what I'm thinking" Thrandasar's voice sounded from the left "You got a volunteer."
"And what is the good doctor thinking, Chief Petty Officer Thrandasar?" Ranil alternated between confusion and irritation, but if there was a way to get at least the civilians off the station…
"My modifications, sir. If we transport everyone but a skeleton crew off the station, let Seleya high-tail it out of here at whatever her impulse engines got and then give the warbirds a good beating… hell, if we throw the shower in after the kitchen sink we might obscure their sensors long enough for the Vulcans to get their warp online and be halfway home before anyone catches on."
Destroying the station and everyone left on board in the process…
Another mad, one in a million shot. Just how often could you pull those off?
Ranil figured that a man who had three Valdore type warbirds sitting in front of his door would be a fool indeed if he were picky about odds.
"Right, let's do it people. Engineer, I want power to transporters just long enough to get this done. You, Miss, can your ship handle 200 and some people? Never mind, I know you'll stack 'em in the corridors if you have to. Doc, for once I want no argument because you're going. Along with the pilot, and it's been a pleasure meeting you, Miss. Mr Sithundë, you're relieved. Over there with you."
Ranil motioned the Lieutenant towards the transporter platform and was about to take over tactical, when his Chief Engineer let out another curse, but the quiet, almost sad way he did it told the Commander their odds had just shifted towards the negligible.
He didn't really want to look, but found his eyes drawn towards the observation window nonetheless. Too late…
The warbirds were moving again, straight for them, in a tight formation that should have given the impression of clinging together but somehow just made them look even more menacing.
Beware the tiger silently waiting in the forest, biding his time …
"I'd love to get my hands on their engineer. His throat, preff'rably."
Mr Donegal's oddly calm voice sounded from the engineering station "S'got to be the devil himself. Shields at 120% output and the front birdie's got weapons hot an' glowin'.  Must 'of figured a way to channel power from the other two without … ye Saints, that I lived long enough to see it…" the Scot stared at the readings on his console and shook his head.
"Less'n 4% deterioration in the power transfer. Why not nip the laws o' physics in the bud while you're at it, lad."
The tactical officer quietly moved back towards his station, carefully targeting his last four torpedoes, for once without waiting for his CO's orders. Thrandasar gave the advancing warbirds a long, cold stare and then struggled to get up.
"Don't…" Ranil was about to say when he saw blue blood appear at the corners of the Andorian's mouth, but the young Vulcan pilot had turned back from silently watching the Seleya's maneuvers over the station, and to the Commander's surprise and Thrandasar's astonishment, moved to lift the other woman to her feet. 
"Thanks, Ohashsu." the Andorian engineer commented dryly, proving that knowledge about the other's culture was in this case obviously a two-way street. It was adorable, the way Sutok and the pretty Vulcan lady quirked a brow almost in unison.
Ranil felt a pain as if someone had tightened an iron ring around his heart, those were good people here and none of them deserved to die, especially not in this pointless, cruel way.
When the first barrage made the station vibrate and the shields flared under the onslaught, his tactical officer launched a torpedo propelled mostly by desperate hope than anything else, the Scot went about finding the proverbial shower to throw in and the Vulcans stood stoically, supporting an Andorian engineer between them, watching Seleya and the few fighters left fan out in a formation of their own, Ranil's clenched fists finally relaxed.
But if it had to be, he wouldn't want to be in any company other than theirs.
Ranil nodded without taking his eyes off the warbirds. They had stopped firing yet again, for what reason this time, Kali only knew.
"They're powering up their .. Well I'll be DAMNED."
Unimpressed by Mr Donegal's curses, the three sleek, deadly ships had indeed turned away from the station and in a brief burst of light, jumped to warp. It made no sense. None at all…
'They had us. We were sitting ducks. They HAD us. What happened?'
[End Log]

Lieutenant Sakarra Tyrax
Chief Helmsman
USS Charon