Posted on Sun Jan 13th, 2019 @ 12:33pm by Captain Charlotte Reynolds & Ensign Claire Lafayette & Lieutenant Commander Maralen Seitha & Lieutenant Dante Rawlins & Ensign K'Muss & Ensign Thyra Sh'shraaqir & Lieutenant Commander Summer Gallagher & Lieutenant Andromeda Sheffield Dr
Episode 3: Foxes and Henhouses
Location: Promenade Pier, Starbase Arcadia
Timeline: Following “Out of the Frying Pan” and “Meet Ups and Mayhem”
The trio of officers in dress uniform approached the bar cautiously. In the distance, they heard phaser fire. But here, things were quiet. Possibly too quiet. Charlotte has some time ago ditched her dress uniform jacket, preferring movement without its restrictions. Her badge had been clipped to the black undershirt instead.
“I think that’s it up ahead,” she whispered to the other two, gesturing forward with the phaser rifle she’d taken from one of the infected officers. She gestured her companions to either side of the door and took cover behind a plant bed for cover, aiming her rifle at the door. Their approach had been deadly silent, so they should at least have the drop on whoever was inside if this was a trap. When prepared, she called out. “Lt. Rawlins, you in there?”
Hearing the voice of the captain from just outside the doors to the bar Dante approached the entrance. "Yes, ma'am, come on in.", he said, standing where he could stop anyone coming in with weapons drawn, or in an attack posture. He'd told everyone to make sure they were prepared for the worst, just in case, and all of them had their weapons drawn, ready to use them if it came down to it. They weren't happy, but they'd done as they were told, which made him proud to serve with them. It had been hardest with Sheffield. She'd had to trust him, and Claire at their word on potentially drawing down on their own commanding officer.
“Ok,” Charlotte said. She gestured to Maralen and Summer, showing that she’d rigged her tricorder to scan the room for a parasite. She’d go in as the bait. If something went wrong, they were there as back up. She stepped forward cautiously, remembering her tussle with an infected Thiriv aboard Defiant. If things went south, she could end up hurt badly. She scooted through the door, finding herself on business end of Dante’s phaser. “Hello everyone,” she said seriously and cautiously. Neither she nor the room moved.
After a moment, her tricorder beeped and flashed green. “Oh, thank god,” Charlotte sighed. “Maralen, Summer. They’re clean. Come on in.” She looked at Claire, “I imagine you’ll want to prove the same of us.”
Claire nodded. “Yes, ma’am. But I already scanned you all.” She turned to Dante. “They’re clean.”
Once he's been given the clear Dante lowered his phaser, the others doing the same. "It's nice to see you all in one piece. I honestly didn't know whether to expect it or not.", He said.
Maralen was not at all happy that Charlotte wanted to go in first given her previous encounter with the infested. She was the captain, however, and so he had bowed to her judgment. When she called the all-clear, he stood and made his cautious way into the building. His rifle -- he had commandeered one from the dead men who had been shooting at him earlier before leaving the scene -- was pointed toward the floor, but his hold on it suggested that it could be raised and fired at a second's notice. As he entered, the weapon remained downward-facing as he took in the room. His eyes landed on Charlotte after doing so, but he said nothing, merely waited for her to give any orders.
Summer looked around at the group. "Well at least we know this lot are clean. I hope Chris can confirm the same with the president."
"Ehm... excuse me," Thyra said and then continued, "I hate to break up this lovely reunion here, sirs, but ehm...the masses in the bar..." She pointed over her shoulder. "While we're talking here, they're getting restless. I can't blame them, they're civilians and they almost always kept out of the look in these kind of situations. Which I understand, don't want a wide spread panic. But we have to tell them something."
"Agreed," Charlotte said, looking over the group of civilians. She had no idea what to do other than leave them in the bar. It was a shelter and they didn't know of any other safe places. "But how the hell do I do that? I can't say there are parasites infecting station crew. We'll have a panic in here in moments."
"Tell them it's a drill.", Dante said. "I don't like lying, and it's really not the answer I'd give in an ideal situation, but at least it would keep the panic down to a minimum. Tell them to stay here, and stay down, but that there isn't a huge amount of danger.", he finished.
"We could evac them to the Artemis," Summer suggested.
"That's a far journey if we want to remain unnoticed," Charlotte said. "And if Captain James is doing what I told him to, Artemis will be departing the station."
"Ah can someone please fill me in?" The young woman in medical teal spoke up.
Charlotte turned to Andromeda. "Oh god, sorry Doctor. I completely forgot you weren't read in. Uh...where to start." She paused, biting her lip in thought.
"So...basically...a species of intelligent parasites capable of fully controlling their host have managed to infiltrate the leadership and security divisions of Starbase Arcadia and have turned the officers against us. The three of us barely escaped with our lives. They made a failed attempt on the Federation President's life and now they're likely hunting the station for us."
She paused for a breath. "Also they've constructed a Dreadnaught-class vessel, gained access to a bioweapon they intend to use to commit a genocide against the Klingons, and its quite possible they started the war in the first place because we believe they've infiltrated Klingon leadership as well." Charlotte stopped speaking a mile a minute and looked around at the others. "Did I forget anything?"
Suppressing the urge to chuckle at the huge deluge of information the captain had just unleashed Dante shook his head, "No, I think that about covered it.", he said. "Now, let's see if she bought it, because that's a bit of a stretch when you hear it all blurted out like that.", he added.
Andie studied them carefully for a moment then she took a breath. "Ok... I hope you have scans to back that up." she said. "And sounds like you are going to need a medic."
Charlotte knew it was only a matter of time before someone got hurt. “Yes, I imagine we will. And I’d be happy to show you our scans. In the meantime, I want to try and get our crew back together. Ensigns, can you try and get in touch with the others?”
Thyra nodded. "Of course, captain." She turned to Kit. "Can you assist me?" She didn't exactly wait for his answer and just walked to a position where she would have a good connection with station communication. She found an access terminal that would suit her purposes.
"Sure," Kit said. He grabbed his own communicator and, using a knife, somehow got it open. With the "guts" exposed he walked over to Thyra.
Summer drifted off to the side, wrapped up in her own thoughts. "We may need somewhere better soon" she muttered as she absently assessed the bar.
Charlotte replied with a wry smile. "I have an idea...but I don't think you're going to like it."