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A ghost ship

Posted on Thursday 30 November 2023 @ 21:27 by Civilian Sansa Draxx-Jones & Lieutenant Commander Ras th'Zaanaq & Ensign Tridi & Lieutenant JG Wintrow Paragon

Mission: The Search
Location: Main Bridge, USS Merlin
Timeline: MD1 1900
1731 words - 3.5 OF Standard Post Measure


When the transporter effect faded, Team Alpha found themselves standing on a dark, silent bridge. The only light came from the bridge stations and the intermittent glow of red alert.

Captain Smith's eyes were still adjusting to the dark when an unknown female voice spoke. "Hands up! I'm armed! Turn around slowly.

The Andorian Commander slowly moved his hand from his side arm and slowly raised his hands, as he slowly turned to face the voice that was speaking.

Despite himself, Smith found himself putting his hands up.

Ensign Carlile was also adjusting to the low light thought she recognised the voice, and started to raise her hands, just to be on the safe side.

Sansa was the first to turn around. "It's ok, it's just Morgan."

"Who..." The Captain asked as he also turned and saw a woman in Starfleet uniform with a phaser aimed at the away team.

"This is Morgan LeFaye. The ships ECH." Sansa explained.

"Oh. The ECH," Smith repeated, feeling somewhat relieved. The crew had obviously named her, he reasoned.

The ECH quickly recognised Sansa. "Ah! Miss Jones. I'm delighted to see you." She lowered her phaser. "And you are?"

"Captain Edward Smith."

The ECH's eyes glazed over momentarily as she accessed Federation records. She then stated "Commanding officer. USS Freeman Dyson. As the senior officer present, I recognise your authority as per Starfleet protocols.

"What happened?"

"I'm not entirely certain." The ECH admitted. " When I was activated I found the ship deserted and seriously damaged. Most systems were offline including engines, sensors, shields and weapons. There was also some hull damage. I have been trying to make repairs but I have not completed them. Engines, shields and sensors are now ready for reactivation. According to the sensor log, the ship was hit by an energy wave of immense power. I found it strange that the damage to the sensors, engines and communications appeared to have occurred before the energy wave hit. The wave has continued on its original trajectory and is currently 100 thousand km away bearing 105 mark 4.

"Some sort of new weapon type?" Ras asked curiously.

Captain Smith looked around for a moment before tapping his comm badge.

Wintrow held on tight to the phaser in his hand, his eyes taking some time to adjust to the eerie darkness in engineering. His senses were in overdrive as he glanced around. "There's no one here but us," he whispered despite the lack of need to do so. "What happened here, where is everyone?"

"Team Alpha to Team Beta. report." Captain Smith's voice came over the comm channel.

"The ship seems to be offline," Wintrow reported as he shone his light across the warp core. "There's a lot of damage but it seems repairs were in progress. There's just no one here sir. Everyone is gone."

"As far as we can tell, the whole ship is deserted apart from the ECH who we've made contact with. It looks like the entire crew has been taken into the Nexus. There's also the possibility there was a saboteur onboard who disabled the engines, long range sensors and communications. See if you can bring any of the primary systems back online and keep an open channel. We don't want any more surprises."

"I'll try sir," the young pilot answered, "but I make no promises. I'm not an engineer "

"According to the ECH. the engines, sensors and communications just need to be brought back online. Then we need to set about finding the crew." Captain Smith replied. "Standby."

Tridi examined the Warp Core silently, the recently graduated Cadet heartbroken to see the ship in this state. The rhythmic pulses of the engine core were absent, replaced with an unnatural darkness that chilled him to his very centre. The green furred alien was gratified that the engines were repaired already, but it was still a very challenging prospect. He was meant to fly a ship, not handle these types of situations.

Wintrow glanced at his furred companion, sensing the younger officer's emotional turmoil. "We'll get this ship going," he promised, "we'll just need to figure out how." He carefully touched the other's shoulder in encouragement. "We can do this. Even though we're pilots, right?"

"Right," Tridi answered, trying to encourage himself in the process.

Back on the bridge, The ECH was replying to Ras's question.

"The damage to the engines, communication, and sensors look to have been caused internally rather than externally." The ECH commented. "As for the energy wave, I've been reviewing to see if it had been encountered before and I found a match in the logs of the Enterprise B who encountered a similar phenomenon. I've concluded that the energy wave is in fact the same gateway to that place the El'Aurians refer to as the Nexus and the entire crew has been transported there."

Captain Smith nodded. "We came to the same conclusion. Are the ship's transporters online?"

The ECH nodded. "Once main power has been restored, the transporters will be fully functional."

"Good. Is it possible to beam a team into the Nexus and retire the crew of the Merlin?"

The ECH frowned. "As far as I am aware, no one has ever tried to beam directly into the Nexus. It is theoretically possible."

"We need to turn theoretically possible into simply possible. How can we get theory into practice quickly?" Ras asked.

The ECH's eyes glazed over as she accessed internal databases and technical manuals. After a few moments, she spoke.

"If we uncouple the Heisenberg compensators and align the annual confinement beam to the temporal frequency of the Nexus, that should allow transport into the Nexus.
According to Starfleet records, one can leave simply by thought, choosing at what time and place they would like to return to since linear time apparently does not apply within the Nexus.
To avoid any serious temporal causality loops being created, I would advise choosing to return to the Merlin approximately 5 minutes after you leave."

Smith turned to Stephanie. “Ensign, could you give them a hand in engineering and then see what you can do with the transporters.”

“Aye sir” She replied and started heading for the turbolift.

Stephanie entered main engineering to find Tridi and Paragon still examining the warp core.

“Have you flyboys not got this ship powered up yet?” She called out jokingly as she approached them

She led them back to the master system display table. “Did you think of trying the interactive engineering assistant?” She asked before she addressed the computer.

“Computer. Run the IEA please.”

A holographic Starfleet badge about half a meter tall materialised complete with arms and legs and a smiling face.

“Hi! I’m Badgey. Your engineering pal. Looks like you’re trying to start the warp core. Do you need some help?”

Stephanie sighed as she explained to them. “You can thank Ensign Cooper for this. Apparently, she got a copy of the program from an engineer onboard the Cerritos.”

She turned back to the hologram. “Hi Badgey. Can we have the warp core startup procedure and checklist please?”

“Sure thing pal.” The holographic badge replied with chirpy optimism.

Instructions started scrolling down the display.

Tridi looked cautiously at the holographic replica of the Starfleet badge that had appeared before them. With the diaspora of technologies he'd been exposed to since his recovery by the Excelsior, the green furred alien still hadn't adjusted to the holographic equipment. Beings appearing out of nowhere was quite frightening and reminded him of local legends on his homeworld. Besides, this Badgey seemed way too happy for his tastes.

Stephanie smiled. “Come on, I’ll check the intermix formula. You prime the injectors and monitor the core temperature. If we mess this up, Commander Seklar will not be happy with us.”

Stephanie configured the intermix formula and noted that both the matter and antimatter injectors were now primed and ready. She ran her finger down the checklist once again, satisfied they were ready. She took a deep breath...

Here we go... she thought to herself. "Warp reaction initialising in 3.....2.....1..... Now!"

The warp core sprang into life, and the sound of its gentle throb filled the room. The lights now came on brighter as main power kicked in.

"Nice job boys!" Stephanie called out to Paragon and Tridi.

"All credit to you, we didn't do anything?" Win replied, surprise on his face.

Badgey added "Great job team!"

Stephanie then added "Thanks Badgey. Computer, end IEA program."

The holographic badge waved as it disappeared.

"I think you flyboys can handle things here now. I'll be in transporter room 1," Stephanie said as she headed for the door.

Wintrol looked to Tridi and frowned. "I'm a pilot and maybe a bit of a mechanic, but I'm not an engineer."

"I'm just glad that hologram's gone," Tridi said as he typed on a workstation. "That thing was creepy."

Most of the primary systems were now back online. A few more of the crew from the Freeman Dyson had beamed over to man the various bridge stations.

"Carlisle to Bridge. Modifications to the transporter are complete. We should now be able to beam into the Nexus but we'll have to be within 70,000Km of the Ribon. It's the furthest I can extend the range.

"Acknowledge, standby." Smith replied. "We'll have to watch out for the gravimetric field that emanates from the trailing edge of the ribbon. That's what snared the Enterprise B. Helm, lay in a course for the Ribbon and full impulse but keep us at least 69,000Km distant. Signal the Freeman Dyson to follow."

He turned to Ras. "This is not your standard away mission and there are no guarantees that this will work as we hoped. I won't order you to do this commander."

Sansa stepped forward. "I'm going to get my mother Catptian." She said with resolve.

"It needs to be done Captain, regardless of the risks." The Andorian said with a confident nod.

"Very well. Report to transporter room 1. Make contact with the crew and bring them home. and good luck!"


Captain Edward Smith
CO USS Freeman Dyson
NPC Jones

Sansa Draxx-Jones
Marine Biologist
USS Merlin

Ensign Stephanie Carlile
Npc Jones

Ensign Tridi
Chief Flight Control Officer
USS Merlin

Lieutenant Commander Ras th'Zaanaq
Mission Specialist
USS Freeman Dyson

Lt j.g. Wintrow Paragon
(Fighter) pilot
pnpc Seklar


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