—[ USS Aeolus]— —[Bridge]— —[2 Hours Post Take Over]—
The four artists in the plot to take over the ship now stood in the center of the bridge. Orrick appeared to be the most flustered than the others as he made a comment, “Well I’m going to say it if no one else is… This plan has gone to shit.”
Reia gave a sigh in understanding Orrick’s frustration commented back, “It’s not over yet.”
Anders added to the collective frustration of the four, “Yea, but McCain now knows. He won’t show… Hell I’m sure he going to have half of the fleet in this sector on our asses any minute now. What do we do now … leader.” he said, pointing his final comment towards Reia with anger.
Reia threw her arms up trying to clear the air, “Just give me a minute to think.”
“I looked through the Captain’s personnel files after the virus unlocked his access codes, there are some plans and dealings he has had with McCain… If we go to the other cells for help there might be enough there for him to loose support.” Suggested Orrick.
“Wait… There is detail information that the Captain had stored on the ship’s computer?” inquired Rea.
“Yea, tons of it, from simulated battle plans into the gamma quadrant, to the fail test mission with the dragon done ship. And past dealings that Captain Engel had with the Tal’shiar.” Added Orrick
“That’s great news, I need you to secure those files together and have them ready within the hour.” Ordered Reia
“I’ll have them ready in ten and on the Captain’s terminal in his ready room…” Orrick paused for a second to correct himself “…Your ready room.”
“It’s not mine, but thanks.” Reia walked over to the Ready Room, she hesitated for a moment to muscle up the courage within her to enter the room.
—[Captain’s Ready Room]—
Reia took a seat at the chair behind the desk; she soon found herself not alone in the room with Rizzo storming in.
“What the hell are you thinking?” interrogated Rizzo
“I’m calling in a favor.” Answered Reia.
“They don’t know like I do that you are not part of the organization, what the hell are you planning?!” protested Rizzo.
Reia let out a sigh as she added, “I plan on giving the information to Admiral Ross.”
“ARE YOU CRAZY!” shouted Rizzo in a fit of rage.
Reia stood up facing Rizzo, “I guess you’re going to have to trust me on this.”
Rizzo began his argument with Reia, “That man has spent years gathering information on us, and you’re just going to hand him the key!”
Reia shook her head at him in disappointment, “I’m not handing him any key, just giving him a piece of the cake.”
“Then do explain… Lieutenant!” added Rizzo
“I’m going to give him the information on Captain Engel and the battle plans of McCain. But that is only good if I give him names of others in Starfleet that are a part of his operation…” Reia sat back down in her chair, continuing her speech “…We would be able to bargain for more time, or very least get help in the matter.”
Rizzo looked at Reia with disappointment, “I hope you’re right.” He added as he left the room.
“Me too.” Commented Reia to herself.
Several hours had past, Reia sent the information to Admiral Ross soon as she finished looking it over as well. All she could do now was to wait. After several minutes of pacing in the ready room her terminal lit up, she rushed over to her desk were she turned on the terminal to see Admiral Ross’s face.
“Lieutenant! Do you know how many violations you have just committed?” inquired Ross
Reia seeming a bit intimated from Ross’s comment, “Some sir, But I have good reasons for this.”
Ross’s anger dismissed as he spoke, “Still I wonder how you got ahold of his information.”
Reia hesitated for a second before she replied, “Its best you don’t know that part sir.”
Ross just nodded, “I guess so, considered the lengths you have gone to. Still what do you have in mind?”
“I would like to continue with the Aeolus sir and go after the Coeus.” Said Reia with conviction.
“Like hell you are!” protested Ross
“Sir!” begged Reia.
“No, I’m ordering you to take Aeolus and rendezvous with the Yorktown. The Yorktown will take Captain Engel in to custody and then you and the Aeolus will report back to Starbase one.” Ordered Ross
“Aye Sir, but what about McCain?” inquired Reia
“Don’t worry about McCain, I’ve already notify Starfleet headquarters, they’re tasking this to the fifth fleet for the remainder of the mission. If Commodore McCain doesn’t report to starbase one o five within twenty four hours, him and his ship will be hunted down…” Ross paused for a moment before he added more, “…Now the last thing I need is another renegade ship on the loose and a Lieutenant I had high hopes for ruin her career. So don’t make this any worse than it is.”
“Understood sir” added Reia
The monitor went blank with Reia staring back at her own reflection. She bit her lip and walked out of the Ready Room.
Reia walked towards the command chair and placed herself on the throne. “Lieutenant Rizzo set an intercept course for the Yorktown, warp nine.”
“Ma’am?” questioned Rizzo
“Now is not the time.” Commented Reia
“Aye…” added Rizzo
The bridge remained silent for the next few hours. Rizzo and the others seemed confused by the sudden course interception with the Yorktown. Soon that silence was met with a quake from the ship’s hull. The Aeolus was thrown from its journey and into a battle of fate.
“Report!” shouted Reia
“Damage to port warp engine from a weapon impact.” Reported Anders.
“Red Alert, Shields up!” ordered Reia as the ship shook once more from barrage of enemy fire.
The view screen lit up with an image of the aft section of the Aeolus and a Galaxy Class starship which appears to have a long shaft attached to the neck and saucer section of the ship.
“Arm photon torpedoes and phaser arrays…” Ordered Reia
Orrick began to interrupt Reia with his comment, “Commander, Commodore McCain is hailing us.”
“…On screen.” Added Reia.
The view screen changed to an image of the captain of the Coeus, Commodore McCain and his command staff on the bridge.
“You have something that belongs to be Commander, I suggest you hand it over if you value your life and the lives of your fellow mutineers.” Demanded McCain
Reia slightly tapped on her command pad a message as she looked at McCain in a sassy tone replied, “Oh? I could say the same; you have something I want on board your ship. What do you say? Beam aboard my ship so we can discuss a trade?”
Rizzo looked at the message that appeared on his console from Reia, ‘On my signal go to maximum warp.’
McCain smirked at the insidious comment from Reia, “Don’t play games with me Commander, or should I call you Lieutenant Merrick.”
Reia perked up an eyebrow as she still moving her fingers across the command pad, “I see that you need to find a new way of gathering information, seems your source got something wrong. I believe you got me confused with someone else.”
A similar message appears across Ander’s console, ‘Arm aft photon launcher and phaser array, target the photon, soon as it is within 50 meters of the Coeus, and destroy it.’
McCain grins at Reia’s comment, “I hope we could of end this like fellow officers, but I can see this conversation is going nowhere, Last chance Commander, surrender or else!”
Reia stood up from her chair and looked at the image on the view screen of McCain and asked, “Do you like fireworks? Cause I love them.” Before McCain could response to the question Reia motioned with her hand to cut the channel. “Fire Mr. Anders!”
The Aeolus let out a small barrage of torpedoes at the Coeus, before the Coeus could react the torpedoes where destroyed the Aeolus as they exploded in a massive red shockwave that appeared to look like a series of fireworks going off one by one.
“Rizzo get us out of here!” ordered Reia
The room shook a bit at the sudden jump to warp speed, Reia took a seat back in her chair and set out a heavy breath. She turned her head up to see Orrick standing there. “Something on your mind?”
“Is it true?” inquired Orrick
Reia closed her eyes for a moment not sure how this will play out, “Yes.”
“Son of a…” commented Anders.
Orrick said in an outrage, “So we’ve been taking orders from a Lieutenant this whole time!”
Reia just covered her eyes with her hand as the other three began to argue over the situation, several minutes pass as the three keep exchanging verbal blows. At this point Reia seemed to have taken all she could handle, she shouted, “SHUT UP!” The three stopped from a moment as they turned their attention towards Reia.
“I don’t think you’re in a position for us to take orders from you anymore.” Commented Orrick
“Then he has already won.” Added Reia.
“What do you mean?” inquired Orrick.
“Look at yourselves, arguing over this. Yes Rizzo and I lied to you about my status. We had no choice but to. But now is not the time to question that, that little trick only gave us about a minute lead. McCain is right now on our collective asses and when he gets the chance and he will. It will be all over for us.”
“We should have fought him there.” Commented Anders
“And what?” inquired Reia as she continued, “That is a galaxy class starship with armaments that we don’t know about. Last time I check this ship is no match for a standard galaxy class. The original plan was to catch the Coeus off guard and disable her while her shields were down.”
“Then we’ll get help, the Yorktown is not too far away from us.” Commented Orrick.
“And how do you think you plan on contacting the Yorktown?” Added Reia
Orrick gave Reia a smirk as he walked over to a console, after a few seconds he slammed his hand on the console in frustration. “The Coeus is flooding the subspace band with random noise; we would have to be another half light-year away from her to get any message out.” Turning to look at Reia, “You have any bright ideas?”
Reia stood up and walked towards the view screen, she turned around and faced the three, “I won’t lie, like all of you I’ve been hairy situations before, but none have felt so demanding. I’ve commanded away missions and lead people, but this would be the first time I’ve been in charge of a starship. Hell my first away mission that I lead caused the death of someone I cared deeply for. But I promise you I will not let you down. And all I ask in return is to have faith and trust in me.”
The three remained in silent for a bit as Rizzo spoke out, “You haven’t let us down yet. Hell you were able to capture Captain Engel of all people.”
“You did get us out of that mess with McCain.” Added Anders
Orrick started to walk back to his station as he said, “If you cross the line I’m taking over.”
“I wouldn’t have it any other way.” Added Reia as she headed for the turbo lift she said, “I’m going to Astrometrics, notify me if the Coeus changes course.”
“Will do.” Added Rizzo
—[Astrometrics, Few minutes later]—
Reia looked at the projected course of the Aeolus on the viewer, noticing the star systems within reach. “Computer, number of planets and types in the Rymus system.”
“Rymus is a class k star system with seven planets total in the system. The star has an average temperature of four thousand three hundred and twenty eight kelvin. The first planet is a class b, the second is a class f with high pockets of hydrogen in the upper atmosphere, the third planet is a class h with minimal animal life found on the surface, the fourth planet is a class M with a population around three billion humanoids, the fifth planet is a class k made up with primitive single celled organisms and is marked as a possible planet for terraforming project for future endeavors, the sixth planet is a class I supergiant with many pockets of super compressed hydrogen, the seventh planet is…” stated the computer as it was interrupted at the last minute.
“…Computer bring up a display of the sixth planet in the Rymus system. And read me the description from the survey team on the planet.”
An image of a super gas giant planet appears on the viewer, the planet looks similar to Jupiter but more of a blue tint covered the gases.
“Rymus sixth is a class I super gas giant, primary made up of hydrogen, traces of helium, benzene, hydrocarbons, neon, oxygen, sulfur, methane, water vapor, ethane, carbon, and phosphine. Other compounds from the base elements are found on the outer layer of the planet’s atmosphere. The planet has a diameter of one million two hundred and forty six kilometers. The planet has twelve moons with four of them having an opposite orbit of the rotation of the planet. The survey team had trouble getting sensor readings on the inter core of the planet due to tense tidal forces and random sensor ghosts coming the magnetic flux tubes that the moons of Rymus one make. The Endeavor was unable to recover a probe it had launched, because the team was unable to get a lock on the probe to beam out of the planet’s thermosphere. Several pockets of compressed hydrogen lay in the thermosphere that will produce rain in the form of liquid hydrogen…”
“Computer you said the planet has pockets of compressed hydrogen in the thermosphere and what the moons for the planet?” inquired Reia.
“The USS Endeavor found that pockets of hydrogen in the thermosphere and mesosphere would compress together to the point it would rain down liquid hydrogen to the planet’s core. Which the planet’s core is primary made up of liquid hydrogen in theory. The largest moon named Saginus of the planet has a close orbit within thirty thousand kilometers of the planet is known to help create the dense compressed pockets of hydrogen in the thermosphere on his orbit due to gravitational forces at work. Saginus also has two companion asteroids that seem to orbit with the moon. The Endeavor believes that Saginus is a captured planet and would be classified as a class E planetoid. The most inter moon of Rymus six travels within the halo of the rings of the planet, while the rest remain in the gossamer part of the ring.” Stated the Computer.
Reia could hear Rizzo’s voice over the com-line, “Reia, the Ceous has increased her speed, and she’ll overtake us in ten minutes.”
“Match speed, and set a course for the sixth planet in the Rymus system. I’m on my way back to the bridge now.” Returned Reia.
“Aye” added Rizzo
The stress on the bridge was intense as the bridge crew attempted to remain claim knowing a dangerous enemy after their lives were right behind them ready to strike. The door to the bridge open and entered Reia, walking toward the operations station and taking a seat next to Rizzo whom is still at the helm.
“Not sitting at the chair?” inquired Rizzo in a whisper
Reia began to enter a sequence of commands into the computer as she began to reprogram the defector array. “I’m needed here if we’re going to make it out alive.” Replied Reia then turning towards Orrick at the engineering station as she issued a command. “Transfer power from the life support from vacated decks on the ship to the defector array and the structure integrity field. Also power down the phaser arrays and divert power from those weapons to the shields.”
“And what do you plan on us shooting with?” inquired Anders sarcastically.
Reia turning back to the console returned to enter the commands back into the computer as she replied, “I do believe there are two aft photon launchers.”
Anders a bit puzzled, “You’re asking me to take down a Galaxy Class starship with photon torpedoes!?”
“No, but if you feel the need to shot at something you can fire all the photons you want.” answered Reia as she continued with her task.
“Two minutes until we enter the Rymus system, and the Coeus is getting closer.” Stated Rizzo.
The bridge shook once more as multiple explosions could be heard in the background.
Anders braced himself against the console from the explosion as he looked down he commented, “Looks like she got too close, she is in torpedo range now.”
“Return fire!” ordered Reia, looking at Rizzo she commented, “I need more speed.”
“At this speed the core will overheat or we’ll be torn apart.” Added Rizzo
“Then fly her apart! We got to get to Rymus six.” Ordered Reia sternly
The bridge shook violently the next several minutes as the Aeolus made her journey into the Rymus system.
“Entering the Rymus system, taking us out in three… two… one…” stated Rizzo
At the sudden stop from warp speed the crew could feel intense g-forces as the dampers attempted to catch up.
“Rizzo take us close to the first moon at best speed.” Ordered Reia.
“The Coeus just entered the system.” Added Anders
“Now that we are here, what exactly is your plan?” inquired Orrick
“You like geek mythology Orrick?” asked Reia as she was using the console.
“I know a little why?” returns Orrick.
“Do you know the tale of Perseus and his battle with the Kraken, Well this Rymus six is our Medusa’s head.” Commented Reia
Orrick turned back to his station as he looked at the sensor readings on the supergiant, he soon came to a realizing of what Reia is about to do. “You’re nuts you know that.” He stated
Reia just smiled, as she commented back. “You’re not the first to tell me that.”
Anders with a bit of puzzling look inquired, “What is she planning on doing?”
“She’s going to use the defector to super charge the compressed hydrogen in the planet’s atmosphere, all it will take is one spark then boom.” Answered Orrick.
“How would that damage the Coeus?” asked Anders.
“Due to the high compression in the mesosphere of the planet, the explosion will be like a volcanic eruption in space.” Added Reia.
“Ah! So you plan on letting the Coeus follow us close then cause the eruption to disable her. But won’t we be caught in the blast as well?” inquired Anders.
“That’s why we’re heading for the planet’s first moon, we’re going to use it as a shield.” Stated Reia.
The bridge shook once from torpedo fire from the Coeus.
“She’s hailing us again.” Stated Orrick.
“Mr. Anders if you don’t mind giving our response.” Ordered Reia.
“With pleasure.” Responded Anders, as he fired a set of photons toward the Coeus.
The ship shook once more from incoming torpedo fire from the Coeus.
“We’re coming upon the moon.” Added Rizzo
The view screen showed a near dead rock with the supergiant taking up the rest of the background.
“Keep us within tractor range of the moon, I’m firing the defector pulse.” Said Reia
—[Bridge, USS Coeus]—
McCain sat in the center chair as he watched the Aeolus on the view screen fire a blue haze towards the planet. “What’s she doing?” Commented McCain to himself.
The ensign at the tactical station announced as he stands ready at his station, “Phaser cannon in range and ready to fire, sir.”
The first officer looked toward McCain commenting, “I don’t like the feel of this, sir.”
“Well whatever she has planned, I won’t let it happen, fire!” Ordered McCain
—[Bridge, USS Aeolus]—
“I’m picking up a high energy build up from the Coeus.” Announced Anders
“Rizzo engage the tractor beam at the moon and get us the hell out of the way.” Ordered Reia
The Aeolus fired her tractor beam upon the moon and like a fulcrum, the ship swings to the other side of the planet. The Coeus fired her main phaser cannon missing the Aeolus all together and striking the supergiant instead.
“The Coeus hit dead on, looks like a pocket is being to cause an eruption.” Added Orrick
—[Bridge, USS Coeus]—
McCain slammed his hand on his arm rest, “Damn that women, move us back into range!”
“Sir, I’m picking up a high energy discharge from the planet.” Announced the Operations officer.
“What!?” Began McCain as his focus changed to the supergiant, off in the distance he could see massive shockwave beginning to form. “Evasive maneuvers!”
“Too late!” shouted the lieutenant at the helm as she tried to move the ship.
—[Bridge, USS Aeolus]—
As the eruption from the planet took place the Aeolus shook as it took the tail end of the blast, several consoles overloaded from the massive energy discharge. Reia look at her console as electric sparks started to form on her console. She quickly lifted her arms up to shield her face as the console overloaded. Reia was thrown from her chair to the hard metal floor of the bridge.
Rizzo quickly moved out of chair to aid Reia, he sighed in relief when he found a pulse on Reia’s neck. “We need a med team up here.”
“Medical team to the bridge.” Ordered Orrick over his comm-badge.
Anders looked at the warning signal on his console, “We got bigger problems… A ship just entered the system.”
Rizzo took off his uniform jacket, making a makeshift pillow for Reia. He soon jumped back at the helm station.
“We’re getting an open channel from the ship.” Said Anders as he puts it on the loud speaker.
“This is Captain Blackwood of the Yorktown to the Aeolus and Coeus you have orders to stand down. Failure to comply and we will open fire.”
“I’m sending a comply signal to the Yorktown.” Said Anders.
“To the acting Captain of the Aeolus, you are your bridge staff are to stand down. An away team from my ship will be beaming aboard to takeover shorty.”
“I guess we got no choice in the matter.” Commented Orrick.
—[Sickbay, USS Aeolus]— —[14 Hours Later]—
Reia awoke in sickbay, she attempted to stand up, but only manage to lift her head briefly. She placed her hand on her head, appearing to be in pain.
“Careful, you took quite a shock Lieutenant.” Said a female voice as she came towards Reia with a hypospray, she placed the hypo on Reia’s neck and ejected Reia with some medication. “There that should help.”
“Where am I?” inquired Reia.
“You’re still on the Aeolus; I’m Lieutenant Becker, Assistant Chief Medical Officer from the Yorktown. Commander Shepard should be here soon.” She Added
Reia rubbed her eyes trying to adjust to the light as she paused when she heard the name “Commander Shepard…” sighed Reia
“I take it you know the Commander?” asked Becker
The doors to sickbay opened up with Commander Shepard entering. “That she does doc, if you don’t mind I would like a few words in private with the Lieutenant.”
“I’ll just be in my new office.” Replied Becker as she walked off.
Will approached Reia’s biobed as he just stood over her.
“I will don’t need a lecture right now Will.” Said Reia.
“Oh… I’m not going to give you one, because I’m sure the brass will chew you a new ass when we get back to earth. I just wanted to make sure you were aware of how worried you made some us these past few weeks. Not to mention all the damage you have caused to two Starfleet vessels. Hell one of them is now a bucket of bolts.” Commented Will.
Reia sat up in her bed as she looked at Will, “I don’t know what to say, but I am sorry.” She gave Will a hug, then kissed him on the cheek as she whispered softly in his hear. “Thank You.”
“For?” inquired Will
“For coming to our rescue.” Said Reia
“Oh… You didn’t really need it, the Coeus took heavy damage from that blast you cause on the planet.” Added Will
“I see, and her crew?” inquired Reia
“Last I heard the fifth fleet is currently performing an search and rescue operation for survivors on board her.” Responded Will
“And?” asked Reia wanting more information.
“And that is all I know, We’ll reach earth in three days, get some rest.” Said Will as he walked out of sickbay.
Becker walked out from her office, “So you and the Commander?”
“No comment.” Added Reia as she laid back down.
“Auh! You’re no fun.” Replied Becker
—[2 Weeks Later]— —[Starfleet Headquarters, Earth]— —[Outside of Hearing Room B]—
It has been two weeks since the battle at Rymus Six and Reia heard no news whatever to McCain or Kuga’s sister for that matter. She only hoped that during her battle that Kuga’s sister wasn’t killed from the near destruction of the Coeus all she knew were that there were some survivors from her.
Reia sat outside the hearing room with two security guards; she had been there for hours as several Admirals discuss the events that happened with the Aeolus and the Coeus. Soon another guard exited from the Hearing Room and spoke, “Lieutenant Merrick, they will see you now.”
Reia stood up and her armed escort followed her in the room. As she entered the room the five admirals sat in front of her, including Admiral Ross and the others she had just met.
Admiral Giese whom sat in the middle of the five looked at Reia as she stood in the center of the room, “Lieutenant Reia Merrick, after carefully reviewing and debating your actions. We do not condone your actions, however your actions did bring about downfall of a rogue Starfleet officers operating within our ranks, and could have very well started another war for the Federation. You also provided detail information on another rogue faction within Starfleet known as Section Thirty One. This court has decided not to formally charge you, however the actions and events are to remain classified. Speaking on these events you forfeit your status as a Starfleet Officer. And in doing so this court will look at more formal forms of punishment if you choice to speak to anyone about this. Do you understand?”
Reia nods in agreement, “Yes, Sir!”
“Very well, Then I assign you to Captain Faulkner as his aid during the refitting and repairs of the Aeolus. Afterward the future of your career will be looked at deeply. Do you have any questions or wish to make a comment.” Added Giese
“No sir.” Reia said, closing her eyes as a sigh of relief.
“Then you are dismissed Lieutenant, and for the record do not take this judgment lightly.” Ordered Giese.
Reia just gave a nod as she walked out of the hearing room.
Reia proceeded down the hall towards a tubrolift when she heard her name being called out.
“Lieutenant!” shouted Admiral Ross
Reia stopped and turned towards the Admiral, “Yes sir?”
“I wanted to make a few comments off the record, don’t worry about Admiral Giese, he only felt since you broke a ship you should fix it.” Admiral Ross put his hand up as Reia was about to make a comment, “You did peak some interests with some of the Admirals with your unconventional tactic in the Rymus system. They won’t say this in there, but good work.”
Reia smiled, “Thank You sir”
“Now I believe you have a new posting to go to.” Added Ross
‘Yes, Sir!” replied Reia
Lieutenant Reia Merrick