S01E02: "Reflections"

Where the crew of the Hope post in-character posts.

S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby FSF Seraphim » Sun Apr 02, 2017 4:03 pm

Captain's Log
Stardate 991114.5

Four days since our arrival at Ildius the Hope is scheduled to begin its deep space mission beyond the Romulan Empire.

Our first encounter with unknown lifeforms occurred as we entered Romulan space; far sooner than any on board expected. The crew led by Lieutenant Blackthorne has been busy analyzing the intrusive code that infected the computer core in the event we encounter those unknown lifeforms again. From what my First Officer tells me their face-to-face suggested as much, if not precisely when.

Meanwhile observation continues regarding Operations Officer Ensign Messier since certain restrictions were lifted following the intrusion. While certain elements remain concerned about placing trust in an artificial intelligence, I do not share in the immediate suspicion for this new form of life. He remains a member of this crew and will be treated as such.

During our stay at Ildius a complement of Romulan personnel was brought on board as part of the collaborative nature of our mission. Starfleet would no doubt emphasis the exploration focus of this mission, but there is undeniably a diplomatic layer -- part of my own doing. While there may be disagreements between personnel during a period of adjustment I am confident all departments will adapt as necessary.

Master Sergeant Rostham should find use for the security personnel and I expect he'll have less trouble integrating them as part of various security or Marine endeavors. The added personnel should bolster some of the programs he has implemented of late to better secure the ship. Others brought to the First Officer and myself have been suspended pending review. Increasing the security awareness of the crew is important as we venture into the unknown. Trained as a Romulan Officer myself I am aware a 'purely scientific' mission would succumb to dangers unbridled idealism would carelessly overlook. However, this remains a Federation affiliated vessel; balance between the spirit of the mission and the requirements for success will be struck.

As we cast off from orbit I have high expectations for ship and crew. No doubt we will encounter many strange and hopefully rewarding facets of our galaxy not previously uncovered.

STORY NOTE
The U.S.S. Hope slowly veers away from Ildius and enters warp. Its course takes it along one rim of the Empire toward the furthest reaches. It will still take some time before the Hope launches itself into the unknown. All department heads have been told to remain alert even in allied space; the Empire remains in a state of fluctuation in some regions as the government seeks to reassert its authority once more.

Everyone is welcome to backpost what they may have done while orbiting Ildius. Personnel would have been authorized to depart to coordinate ship-to-shore transactions or for short personal trips, but most remain held to duty assignments in preparation for the long voyage ahead.

I will endeavor to pace the story in accordance with frequency of character posts and on-going activities. It may be necessary at times to throw up Story Notes to advance the plot so it doesn't slow down for extended periods. Always feel free to backpost, or continue unresolved stories in the In Another Time, In Another Place thread.
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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby Brett K Reese » Mon Apr 24, 2017 11:52 pm

Dr. Brett Reese
CMO
USS Hope

Brett gritted her teeth as she did squats while tossing a heavy medicine ball at the gym wall. The sweat rolled down her face stinging her eyes. With the last toss and grab she laid out on the mat breathing heavy and wiped her face with a towel as she chugged water from a bottle. *I can think of other things I'd rather be doing to get me this hot and tired,* she thought with a sly smile. "Well back to it." With that she got up and moved to the martial arts area of the gym and began her kata routine before practicing her fighting skills on the bag.

Time Index: 1 hr later
Location: Reese & Rostham's quarters
"Computer locate MSgt Rostham," Reese commanded as she entered her quarters.

**Master Sargent Rostham is in the security office.**

"He'll probably be there a while. I'll take a nice long shower before starting dinner." As the water in the shower started her clothes dropped to the floor revealing her sweaty, sore, taught body. Stepping into the shower she let the hot water cascade over every part of her.

<Tag Rostham>

Time: Next day 0800 hrs
Location: Sickbay

"Thank you Ensign," she said handing the PADD back to the ensign that just delivered the last of her medical supplies. With new Romulan crew members she stocked up on more Romulan specific medicines and blood. "Nurse Das finish stowing all the supplies and bring me your report when you are done." "Yes Dr," the nurse replied.

Brett retuned to her office and pulled up the latest report from the hospital on Ildius. Once they arrived Brett immediately transported Marisol to the hospital on the surface where the best optical surgeon spent hours in surgery repairing her optic nerve properly. Brett was able to stabilize it, but the fact is she is some things need a specialist. She'll be out of circulation for a while, but it gives her time to get used to being a wife. I'm sure she will still run engineering from behind the scenes, but her hands on day to day participation is sidelined for the foreseeable future. She will have to go through several more procedures over the next year and wear glasses to take the strain off her eyes until they are fully healed. "I know she hates being out of the action, but unlike engineers doctors are not miracle workers and bodies have to have time to heal or they have an annoying habit of shutting down permanently."

Brett finished her report and headed to the staff meeting in the observation lounge.

<Tag All>
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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby FSF Seraphim » Tue Apr 25, 2017 8:24 pm

Captain Vreenak & Colonel Kholhr
U.S.S. Hope, Bridge

Vreenak looked up from the PADD at Colonel Kholhr, the Romulan officer standing at his side waiting as he reviewed the report. "Extensive." Once the Hope was underway the former -- or was it current? -- Tal Shiar agent had stepped forward to offer a quick review of certain findings she'd taken upon herself to collect. "The Master Sergeant will be available if any follow-up is necessary."

The Colonel's smile didn't waver at the suggested. "Generous, as always, Captain. I'll do my best to keep them out of your way."

With a nod he handed the PADD back to her before looking for Commander Scott.

Another maiden voyage, of a sort. Hopefully less rudely interrupted as the first leg of it had been. Unfortunately, loathe as he was to say it, the Empire wasn't as safe as it once had been. It would take time to undo the damage that'd been done. Too much time. And if their previous visitors were any indication it wouldn't matter how safe a certain area of space should be. Not when people could appear out of the air at will. Almost conjured ancient tales that might have a seed of truth to them; shame anything of value had been lost with embellishment and mistranslation.

His black eyes washed over the bridge as a whole taking in those currently on duty. They'd soon venture out into the deep unknown; this time of their own accord. It should prove of considerable scientific value. And diplomatic value, provided they came to better understand one another.

Kholhr's own eyes slid around the Captain to find the First Officer in case he had any desire to see the report. Just tidbits she'd collected on the Romulan personnel chosen for the assignment. Naturally a handful warranted extra scrutiny. Different factions, different agendas. Best make sure none of the more ambitious ones did anything foolhardy.
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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby The Gnostic » Thu Apr 27, 2017 1:10 am

-=/\=- M. Sergeant Rostham -=/\=-
Chief of Security (acting)
USS Hope-A


An ancestor of mine once maintained,” said the Romulan in his shiny chainmail uniform, “If you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how unlikely, must be the truth.

Rostham nodded, wondering where he had heard that before. The new Romulan contingent on board was sizable. What was more surprising was that they were allowed to access all but the most sensitive areas of the ship. The two men huddled by the latest scanner results from the assault on the ship, before they arrived at Ildius.

The first scans were totally inconclusive. Nothing matched the charts in terms of electro-chemical analysis. The physics revealed the temperature at which the bulkhead melted, but slowly, him and the Romulan science assistant ruled out every form of radiation or phased energy weapon they both knew of.

Nothing matched. Not the energy signature, micro crystalline damage on the bulkhead, or the invisible shield the intruders used to stay hidden, or their short-range transporter used travel from Deck Five to the other areas of the ship.

They must have had a ship nearby,” guessed Rostham.

Well, that too,” agreed sub-lieutenant J’Nar. “I was going to say, they came from a different dimension.

With a ship nearby,” Rostham rubbed his temples, out of sheer frustration that no answers were readily available.

Let's go over the footage again,” the junior officer suggested, surprised to see the Terran’s mood drop just because the task was frustrating somehow. Romulan crew were taught to diligently apply themselves to a problem until solution was found. To display so much emotional turmoil was a waste of psychic energy.

I'll tell my wife I'll be home late,” he replied and sent a chirp via communicator.

<tag Reese, all>
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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby Brett K Reese » Thu Apr 27, 2017 1:55 am

Dr. Brett Reese
CMO
USS Hope

It took several chirps of the intercom before Brett noticed. Quickly she stopped the shower. "Reese here. Go ahead."

<Tag Rostham>

"I understand. See you at breakfast." she said sympathetically. Brett had spent many all nighters during her residency and on various missions so she knew time had a way of taking twice as long when you were tired or frustrated.

As the comm link closed she returned to her shower. No reason to pass up the opportunity for a nice relaxing nap.

<Tag all>
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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby The Gnostic » Mon May 01, 2017 8:50 am

Rostham rushed home, head throbbing from review of the security footage. He had a meeting with Lieutenant Blackthorne in the early morning, and the ranking Romulan security officer at noon. He wanted to head a department; now he got it. And more responsibility than any single person could handle.

A man's home is his castle though, and he ran to the refuge of his wife. Catching her napping, he rubbed her shoulders, fluttering her eyelids awake.

"Imzadi", he smiled and kissed her eyelids.

"Are you familiar with Shakespeare?", he asked. He looked out the window into the abyss of space.

"To be or not to be that is the question. For who could bear the whips and scorns of time, the oppressor's wrong? Who would bear to Grunt and sweat under a weary life, but for the dread of death, the Undiscovered Country from where no traveler returns..."

After quoting Hamlet Act III whilst stroking her auburn hair, he rose and walked to the replicator. "Honey, we're not going to use this damn thing anymore." He turned to a new device on their table, a little square which turned bright red when you pushed the button on the side.

"On the planet below," he stated, unwrapping a slab of meat which smelled of blood and spices, "there's a deal for targ meat". The swine steak was frozen several hours ago, but now was room temperature. His mouth began to salivate as he placed the heavy pan on the heated glass stove.

"I found a cast-iron pan." He neglected to tell her how much he paid for the ancient relic, but he missed dearly the taste of meat cooked on an open campfire, with a well-burned sear on everything.

"Some parts of the Empire are facing starvation. The Klingons have been importing targ meat because it's cheap enough for the masses." A tad of oil into the pan, he plopped the first steak on to the old cast iron. A minute and a half of searing should be good.

Soon, they were seated at a candle lit dinner, succulent flesh and gravy with balsamic vinegar marinating in their mouths.

"Replicated food tastes like @$$," he said, knifing into the tenderloin with a fork. He was old school and proud of it.
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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby FSF Seraphim » Wed May 03, 2017 10:48 pm

Captain Vreenak
U.S.S. Hope, Bridge

"Helm, status." The Captain strode forward to the railing separating the command level from the Conn. His dark eyes remain on the viewscreen of the simulated starfield of the ship at warp; points of light blazing past a vessel dancing around the light speed limit of the universe. They were underway even if they had a decent road ahead still within familiar territory.

"Approaching nine thousand AU from Ildius, Captain," the Helmsman on-duty responded.

Normally he would have expected Anam to be present for this shift, but bringing Romulan personnel aboard hadn't been the only change. Vreenak nodded with the given report. They were cruising at warp five for the time being; there was no need to prove the ship's space worthiness at present. He'd have the ship increase speed soon enough once they cleared some of the more populated shipping lanes around Ildius. "Very good."


STORY NOTE
Following the encounter with the unknown entities several days ago the SAPHYRE had not resumed full power operations; however, the array was online and capable of boosting the effective range of 'traditional' sensors. A faint subspace communication frequency flickered in and out of detection from nearly twenty light years from their present position.
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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby Brett K Reese » Fri May 05, 2017 10:35 pm

Dr. Brett Reese
CMO
USS Hope

MSgt Rostham wrote:"Replicated food tastes like @$$,"


Brett tried not to laugh out loud as she chewed a tender juicy piece of targ. "I have to admit I do like a good fresh steak, but there are times when we are far away from anything and fresh food doesn't stay fresh forever." She reached over and stole a piece of his meat and fed it to him flirtatiously. "You know what would go great with this?"

Tag

"A large hot baked potato with an obsene amount of cheese, green onions, and sour cream." She took a bite and savored its warm medium rare texture. "Do you have to go right back on duty?"
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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby The Gnostic » Sun May 07, 2017 10:58 pm

-=/\=- M. Sergeant Rostham -=/\=-
Chief of Security (Acting)
USS Hope-A


Brett Reese wrote:You know what would go great with this? A large hot baked potato with an obscene amount of cheese, green onions, and sour cream.... Do you have to go right back on duty?


He smiled, and tore into his steak. "No, I have 45 minutes or so," he affirmed. "I'd prefer if you replicate the raw ingredients." He gestured towards the shiny black skillet on the battery-powered burner. "The cast iron is still hot." He leaned back in his seat, watching the gravy pool in his plate.

Cutting into his sirloin, he brought up the question again. "While you're at it, tell me what you know about Shakespeare."

<tag Reese>
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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby The Gnostic » Sun May 07, 2017 11:02 pm

-=/\=- Lieutenant Anam Farooqi -=/\=-
Assistant Science Officer & Helm
USS Hope-A


The new Hope-A, Pathfinder class, had the most generous Stellar Cartography lab since the late revamp of the Galaxy-class, with wide viewing angles and 360-degree panoramic view. Their mission to the Romulan seat of government would take them deeper into Beta Quadrant than any Federation ship before; thus the new Sapphyre Array was the backbone of the starship's sensor grid, and hence overall mission. Though it was powered down since the incident several days ago, it still augmented the range of the other sensors.

The young Lieutenant with the cropped beard mapped the rapidly appearing conflux of stars and nebulae, light refracting in the warp field all around them. His current task was to merge a trove of Romulan sensor data with the LCARS database, no mean feat since Romulans were not using Arabic names from Earth's ancient Middle Ages.

A faint flicker appeared on his giant viewscreen, illumined in a halo of bright circles as he was tracking the download from the Romulan navigational charts.

Then it was gone.

Then it was back again.

"Lieutenant Farooqi to Bridge," he gulped, not knowing what to make of the fluctuating subspace frequency signature. "You might want to see this..."

<tag Bridge>
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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby Brett K Reese » Mon May 08, 2017 9:26 pm

Dr. Brett Reese
CMO
USS Hope

MSgt Rostham wrote:"While you're at it, tell me what you know about Shakespeare."


"I know a little," she said while entering the commands for her Brett's special baked potatoes. "I know one of his most under appreciated plays Macbeth is a perfect example of how ambition can destroy a person. It's also supposedly cursed so when it's performed they never refer to it by its name in the theatre. They always say the Scottish play. I can't remember how the superstition started but it persists after all these centuries. Also Klingon's love Hamlet. As do you," she smiled placing the steaming loaded potato in front of Rostham.

"Enjoy," she said leaning in and giving him a peck on the lips.

Tag
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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby FSF Seraphim » Sun May 14, 2017 7:56 pm

Captain Vreenak
U.S.S. Hope, Stellar Cartography

The doors to Stellar Cartography opened and through them strode Captain Vreenak. His eyes went to the captiving glow at the heart of the facility, but quickly dropped toward the one of the man manning it -- Anam. "Lieutenant, you had something to show me?" Some days the good holographic Ensign's ability to just rapidly move from one place to the next would be useful. On the other hand, data could be shared remotely and even displayed on the bridge. But they weren't currently tasked with a mission requiring his personal attention and it wouldn't hurt to visit the lab while not a captive of an outside force.

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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby Brett K Reese » Wed May 17, 2017 10:43 pm

Dr. Brett Reese
CMO
USS Hope

Brett kissed Rostham before he returned to duty and then cleared away the last of their feast. "I miss the honeymoon," she thought out loud as she placed the last of the dishes on the replicator. Then she took a quick shower, put on her hiking clothes, grabbed her pack and headed to the holodeck to work off the meal and her frustration with a nice hike through the Colorado mountains near her cabin back home.

Location: Holodeck 2
"Computer load Reese home."

The computer chirped and replied, "Program loaded ready to enter."

The doors opened revealing a dense forest of pine and oak trees. The sky was clear with a few wisps of clouds. She stepped onto the dirt path. It was amazing how authentic the sound, feel, and smell was. If she let herself she could forget she was millions of miles away from this place.
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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby The Gnostic » Sun May 21, 2017 1:56 pm

-=/\=- M. Sergeant Rostham -=/\=-
Chief of Security
USS Hope-A


The feast was all too short. "Duty calls," he lamented, kissing her on the forehead. Pinning his rank lapels back on, he promised to return soon.

Brett Reese wrote:I miss the honeymoon.


He noticed her attention was far away, as he walked out the door. "Let's get some dishes and utensils from the next planet we stop by. It will spruce up our home, and help the local economy," giving her one last kiss.

He took the lift into the security office, and greeted the Romulan security liaison between the two crews aboard the Hope, Centurion T'remon. They shook hands after a slight hesitation by the Romulan, and sat down to discuss the basics of their respective chains of command.

"In the old Romulan system, the praetor would appoint a quaestor to oversee the admiral of the fleet . Each ship would be led by a commander, (which you call a captain), but everyone from a centurion down to a legionnaire would be accountable to the Praetor himself."

"Through the quaestor?"

"Through the Quaestor's supervision, yes."

"Very interesting," Rostham nodded.

"Very efficient," the dark-haired liaison added.

"And what about today? With the Empire in turmoil?"

"We will use our self-determination to determine our future," the Romulan slyly answered.

"Even the Senate is not what it used to be," Rostham supposed. His alien counterpart stayed in silence. "Nor the Tal Shiar."

"Sergeant, that is beyond the scope of our present task-at-hand," the taciturn guest finally answered.

"I'm sorry," he offered. Sensing the tension, he changed the topic instead. "For us, the admirals of Starfleet Command report directly to the Federation Council President and his advisors..."

He explained the UFP hierarchy, but his mind shifted back to Brett/Imzadi. While speaking to the man in front of him, he accessed ship's computer and tracked the location of Dr. Reese, CMO.

The main Holodeck, alone. That's not good, he thought to himself. She already had experienced the trauma of sexual assault, which she never talked about -- with him or anyone else. And the chemical dependency -- with what he didn't know. But he had seen enough addicts of milk-of-the-poppy in the Zahara reality to know the patterns of abuse and addiction. And now she was escaping to the holodeck, as if the other set of behaviors were not enough.

After escorting the security liaison to hit the door, he chimed his commbadge to the ship's resident counselor.

"Sergeant Rostham to Ensign Kirkpatrick."

"What can I do for you sir?
," came the little electronic speaker's reply.

"Please make an appointment with myself and my wife, at your earliest convenience."

<tag Kirkpatrick>

(cf. http://www.orionpressfanzines.com/artic ... legion.htm)
Last edited by The Gnostic on Sun May 21, 2017 2:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby The Gnostic » Sun May 21, 2017 2:01 pm

-=/\=- Lieutenant Anam Farooqi -=/\=-
Asst. Science Officer & Helm
Stellar Cartography Lab, USS Hope-A


Captain Vreenak wrote:Lt., you had something to show me?


The bearded science deputy turned around, stunned to see the Big Man himself. "Uh, yes, captain," he stammered, swiveling in his chair back towards the viewscreen. He zoomed in on the flashing blip of the signal on the large display.

"It's a faint signal on a subspace frequency. Six point one-three parsecs away." He tried honing the signal further by adding power to the underlying Sapphyre array. "It's very faint, Captain, I'm trying to isolate it." He pondered how the captain arrived behind him so fast, as though he were a djinn. But the delicate refinements of sensor calibration and the difficulty of the object being detected, kept his mind at bay.

<tag CO, Bridge>

(cf. http://www.metric-conversions.org/lengt ... arsecs.htm)
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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby FSF Seraphim » Tue May 23, 2017 7:17 pm

Captain Vreenak
U.S.S. Hope, Stellar Cartography

The Romulan commander waited as the scientific-minded helms officer recovered. He could have sent Scott down, of course, but rank had its privilege; and this time venturing down to the lab didn't involve being held hostage. His eyes shifted toward the image on display once Anam set to task.

"Subspace frequency," the Captain repeated as he gazed at the blip, much good as it would do in forcing it to reveal itself. "Hailing pattern?" If it was held long enough and wasn't a repetitious, short burst it could be a man-made creation. "Do we know of any other vessels in the sector that could detect the signal?" Perhaps even simply aid in triangulating the source. The Captain would have asked Operations if he were still on the bridge, but Vreenak expected Anam was coordinating with them remotely already.

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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby The Gnostic » Mon May 29, 2017 6:47 pm

-=/\=- Lieutenant Anam Farooqi -=/\=-
Asst. Science Officer & Helm
USS Hope-A


Captain Vreenak wrote:Hailing pattern? Do we know of any other vessels in the sector?


The damn signal was so faint, and the boss was standing over his shoulder. "I can't tell if it's a hail yet, Captain. It doesn't correspond to any SOS or signal I can tell."

Tap tap, on the console. "There's a Ferengi freighter with a cargo of ale passing through the area. I doubt their scanners are more well-equipped than ours, sir.

He continue trying to hone the signal, as Vreenak stood behind him coolly, as though his blood were chilled to zero degrees.

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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby The Gnostic » Sat Jun 10, 2017 3:18 pm

-=/\=- M. Sergeant Rostham -=/\=-
Chief of Security
Main Holodeck, USS Hope-A


Rostham headed towards the turbolift as his shift ended. The door swung open wide as a vast wilderness, resembling the forests of North America, opened up before him, the smell of fresh pine strong in the air.

Before confronting his lover, he sat by a clearing and created a small circle of stones, with which he made a fire pit. Pulling out the 50 yarrow stalks, he asked the ancient oracle how to approach Imzadi about her secrets, past and present.

Hexagram 34 changing to Hexagram 48.
Power of the Great to the Well

"Displays of power cause troubles. The excess of thrust must be compensated with prudence."


Three changing lines. 9 at the beginning: Getting things done by force is dangerous. It is good not to follow this way.

9 in the fourth place: Power is applied to the wheel axle. That is the right way to go on.

6 in the fifth place. Hard on the outside, soft inside. There is no need for hardness.


"Thanks Confucius," he muttered at the advice. Then the new situation, Hexagram 48 (The Well), the prediction of how things will be.

Available. Education. Employment. Hydration. Joy. Moisture. Opulence. Reserve. Resources. Roots. Satisfaction. Sentimentality. Tears. Tool.


Hearing a rustle in the trees, he turned to see his auburn-haired lover approaching behind him. "Imzadi," he said approaching her first.

<tag Reese>
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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby FSF Seraphim » Sun Jun 11, 2017 11:22 am

Captain Vreenak
U.S.S. Hope, Stellar Cartography

Ferengi? Vreenak held his tongue. "I agree," the Captain replied with as level a tone possible. It was possible they'd scavenged or purchased something impressive, but the Romulan Commander in him found it difficult to expect much of the gold-pressed latinum-minded people.

With tap to his combadge, Vreenak ordered, "Bridge, this is the Captain. Adjust course toward the signal on sensors." In time that should help with the scan clarity.

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Re: S01E02: "Reflections"

Postby Brett K Reese » Mon Jun 12, 2017 11:36 am

Dr. Brett Reese
CMO
USS Hope
Main Holodeck

"I could stay here forever," Brett said to herself as she rocked on the porch of a rustic cabin overlooking a vast mountain valley. As she sipped from a coffee cup she heard the distant holodeck door open. Leaving her cup on the table by her chair, "I wonder who that is. Rostham is on duty."

The Gnostic wrote: -=/\=- M. Sergeant Rostham -=/\=-
Chief of Security
Main Holodeck, USS Hope-A


Hearing a rustle in the trees, he turned to see his auburn-haired lover approaching behind him. "Imzadi," he said approaching her first.


"Hi," she said surprised. "I thought you were on duty?"
<Tag Rostham>
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