USS Pioneer NCC-74757

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Operation Homeward Bound - Kick The Door In

Posted on Mon Mar 16th, 2020 @ 11:08pm by Staff Sergeant Flarn & Sergeant Gaagii & Lance Corporal Shayla Kunadt & Makeba Brown & Commander Quinn Ó Flannagáin & Staff Warrant Officer Jennifer Masters & Warrant Officer Mira Jayna & Captain Cornelius Tremble & Sergeant Miranda Schultz & Corporal Azure Thompson & Corporal Tyrigus Fry & Lance Corporal Rairror Thoran & Lance Corporal Adélaïde Moreau & Private Aiden Pearce
Edited on on Mon Mar 16th, 2020 @ 11:47pm

Mission: Episode 9 - Empok's End
Location: Lower Pylon Seven/Various - Empok Nor
Timeline: MD005 0800 hrs
4280 words - 9 OF Standard Post Measure



A small bead of sweat dripped from Shayla's brow. Deep within her, her nerves raged. She swallowed hard and the nervous beast within was sated temporarily. This was what she lived for, trained for, dreamed out. This was what the SFMC meant to her. Behind her The Cure sat suited up and waiting for their part, the battle, their part in history.

"Ladies hold on to your garter belts..." She called to the team in the back as the Hawkeye dropped into evasive. The Cardassian flagship a Galor Class named Alant sat docked at pylon seven. "Cap, one half of the plan is going well, the other I am not sure about yet. It seems that someone has managed to get the mooring lines locked down and out. So the Alant can't go anywhere. However, we still need those codes to get through the shields. Frakkin damn it..." She shouted and the Hawkeye rocked. "Computer execute the Starfire Manuver." The computer chimed and within an instant the Hawkeye came to an all stop, it's nose facing the Alant. Shayla smirked, "Right ladies and gents this is where it gets fun grab a barf bag." The shuttle began to spin in a star like pattern. All weapons fired on all axis.

Suddenly the com system flashed up and Jenn's face appeared in Neil's HUD. "Ok, Neil, I just got access to the cardassian security systems." She was in the SCIF on board the Pioneer and she had agreed with Neil to hack in to the Cardassians security system and take down their shields and weapons. It had been a while since she attempted anything of the sorts. AS she was talking she was frantically tapping on her console. They could see her eyes move all over the place as she was looking at a second screen.

"It looks like they made some modifications to their security systems, but these Cardassians are so predictable, it's almost not fun anymore." Jenn looked at the layers and layers of codes. "I thought this was the Obsidian order, they could really learn from the Tal Shiar." She hit one more time. "Oh yes, this is your station captain speaking. Shields are lowered, weapons are down, you may enter the station at your own risk. Now I left some nice puzzles for the Cardassians to toy with, it will buy you some time to get in, but I don't know how long it will take them to figure it out and regain control, so hurry up. In the meantime I will hold the door open as long as I can. Masters out." She hit a button and Jenn's face disappeared.

"Roger that," Neil responded automatically, before toggling his com back to the Hawkeye's channel. "Right. Corporal Kunadt, begin our run; lets hit it."

"Weeeeeeeee Dooooggggggiieeeee..." Shayla shouted as the ship did it's thing. When it stopped it seemed that the Alant had taken a fair amount of damage. "Not sure how that happened.... But what's our next move"

Miranda was more focused on settling her insides after their wild ride. She'd seen the Starfire Maneuver in holovids before, but this was her first time from the inside. She took several deep breaths and waited for orders.

Azure was glad she'd only had a light breakfast and the contents of her stomach had stayed put, rather than splattering the inside of her helmet.

Rairror was practically chomping at the bit, to get into action.

Neil looked over the bio readouts streaming over his HUD and then looked over the Cure, who were mostly strapped into the Hawkeye like sardines in their MARVEL/EAS suits. He had chosen the spot nearest the hatch that they'd be exiting and he yelled, "Alright people. We've all done elevator rides before. Suck it up and stand to. Just like we practiced, this is going to be a hot LZ and we'll need to hit them hard and fast. Anything moving is fair game, so get out there fast and cover your zones of fire. We'll secure the hatch, then move out from there."

The Marine Captain was always impressed with Shayla's piloting, and he was thankful the suit let him wedge himself it he corner like it did or they'd likely be bouncing about like pinballs, even with the inertia dampeners.

"We're the tip of the spear on this one," he continued after catching the eyes of the majority of his marines. "Brigade and the Pioneer are counting on us, so we have to get it right."

"Ooh Rah!" Schultz replied, eager to get in and get the job done.

"I think I can get us in just above the airlock. But if that flagship is not disabled this is going to be one crappy and short ride." Shayla spoke as the Hawkeye rattled again. Her evasive manuevers kicked in again a a group of torpedoes went off missing their targets. "Frak! The rain is really coming down it is now or never..." She yelled over the din.

Gaagii thought that he must have been the only one who did his homework. As the RECONN Specialist he researched every access point of Empok Nor. The soft tones of his voice came through the comm channel. "Lance Corporal, Sir if we position the Hawkeye just above the mooring lines we should have an slightly easier time of entering. The ship that is there has it's mooring somehow locked, but that is fortuitous for us. When that happens the maintenance hatch for the mooring system can be accessed. We should be able to gain entrance there. Also, once aboard I believe that my team should go full SAR searching for any remaining civilians or crew. Moreau can take point..." He sharpened his trademark tomahawk as he spoke.

"We have set objectives, Sergeant," Neil replied as he scrolled through the information his feed was bringing him. "You can do some SAR work on your way there, but remember we have to secure Ops, Engineering and Security. Once those are locked down, we can start looking for survivors."

"Sir, if the hatch is locked, I have the key." Rairror said raising his weapon, which was a hand held phaser cannon.

Adelaide nodded at her team leader, Sergeant Gaagii. She had been working under him now for a short time and had found his guidance to be a good influence on her SAR technique. "Happy to take point Sergeant!" she moved to the front of her group. She was eager to get boots on the ground so to speak.

Neil smiled wryly. His marines were eager, which was good. "It might come to that, Corporal Thoran. Seems a shame to have to scratch the paint, but they won't be stopping us."

"Alright my loves... Here we go..." Shayla called as she thrust the Hawkeye full ahead. "Sir I am going to need you on the weapons. This is not going to be easy." The shuttle advanced toward the Alant at full impulse. The large Cardassian vessel was rendered almost useless by the covert onslaughts of the Pioneer's Intelligence Division. However, Empok Nor saw the shuttle coming and opened fire. A barrage of phaser fire and torpedo fire erupted around the shuttle. "We have incoming. Brace yourselves." Shayla called.

The Hawkeye performed a couple of barrel rolls and then a somersault. When the ship came to a stop it was in place above the hatch and just to port of the Alant. Shayla breathed a little heavier than normal with the strain of flying. For those moment the only sounds within the Hawkeye were the computer running through it's commands. "We are in position. But I do not know how long I can maintain it." Shayla called out and then quickly rerouted more power to the shields.

As the shuttle swooped in, Neil activated the countermeasures system and five plate sized objects launched and spread out over the station's surface, before locking down as the shuttle touched down. They began sending off signals and explosives rippled to confuse the defender's as to the Cure's actual entry point.

The drop ship flipped hatch first and the docking collar extended as the Hawkeye neared, grappling to the top of the station and Neil hit the locking mechanism. Immediately, magnetic grapples sealed to the station's hull and the cutting mechanism kicked in. A powerful cutting phaser begin spinning about the permitter of the collar assembly and eight seconds later a two meter in diameter opening appeared in the hull.

Hitting the quick release on his restraints and deactivating the magnetic panels in his suit, the station's gravity claimed the Marine Captain and he jumped feet first into the breech. "LET's GO MARINE'S," he shouted into the com as he fell into the station.

When the laser had punched through the hull, the grappling ring had dropped charges along with it and the explosion and blindingly bright strobes momentarily stunned the defenders.

A moment was a bit more than the Cure needed. Neil and the first marines out of the shuttle leveled weapons and cut loose. Neil had a grenade launcher in hand and began rapid firing stun grenades and tanglers, which hammered the squad they were facing in the landing bay they'd chosen for this mission. It was one of the smaller bays and would be easy to defend once they moved out.

His shoulder phaser followed the targeting reticule of his contact and began snap firing at any targets, taking down three of the obsidian order's troops as they came pounding around a corner in response to the Marines landing.

In seconds, the bay was secured. The armored suit wearing Marines were dealing with prisoners and forming up for the next leg. Neil reloaded his launcher and looked around.

So far so good. "Alright," he called over the coms. "Command team with me for Operations. RECON and Fire team One, you're on Security...make it noisy and get their attention. Fire team two, you're on Engineering. Make it dark and kill their grav."

Neil made sure his squad was set and took the lead, as the Marines began. They'd set up automatic sentry pod's to defend the pod which were particularly nasty and also came with five, two-meter long snake like drones which would 'come to life' once the phaser turrets activated to any enemies entering the area.

The drones could lay imperceptibly flat until beings walked amongst them, then they'd activate and start biting. They had neurotoxins which would stun an elephant for six hours. Next the snakes would coil within the downed enemy troopers, laying in wait.

Within seconds, the Cure was ready to move and he said, "Let's get it done, Marines. The only easy day was Yesterday."

Makeba had come armed with only a palm phaser it was easier to conceal as she made her way through the station. They had arrived with just enough time to lock out the Alan't disembarking procedures. It was a nice touch she thought. Too bad it was not her idea to do it. "Nice of you and you band of miscreants to join us..." She smirked as she approached Niel. "We have managed to get the Alant locked in place. What are your orders, as this is your Op now Captain."

Jayna stepped out of the shadows behind Makeba. She had one phaser and one knife, the other still safely tucked in her boot. She was pleased with how well an old Maquis trick worked on the Alant. Not only was it locked in place, she rerouted weapons controls. The first time they fired weapons, sensors would go offline. It would give the Pioneer and the Cure an extra bit of protection. At least, she hoped so. She nodded to Tremble, waiting for his response.

Neil's combat suite picked up the heat motion before he did and only the IFF (Identify Friend or Foe) software picked up the members of Pioneer's wayward Intel group. His shoulder mounted phaser still tracked them however until he confirmed the hold fire option and he shook his head.

"You both fall in with us. We're headed for operations. Fast. We'll take point as this isn't a snoop and poop mission. Ms. Brown, alternate your overwatch to our flanks. Warrant Mira, keep an eye on our six. If we get into a protracted firefight, get to cover first. We'll take the brunt. You both have weapons? Any questions?"

Makeba knew that the time for standing on the sidelines was over. Up until this moment she only had to act against the Maquis just to let the Cure aboard, it was in the best interests of the Maquis for the Cure to liberate them from Leyton. However, now she was being asked to be an active participant, to possible kill some of her brothers and sisters. She looked toward Tremble and the rest of the Cure as these thoughts poured through her head. Makeba drew her phaser as her brain resolved the quandary. "Yes sir I have the flanks..." Her years as a Starfleet Tactical Officer kicked in and she sealed her fate and her return to starfleet.

Jayna didn't say anything. She nodded to Tremble as she pulled her phaser and took her place at the rear. Being half-Vulcan she liked the position as it gave her more of an opportunity to use her senses.

Sergeant Song, Fire Team 2 Leader, turned top his team. "You heard the Skipper, move out." He ordered.

His fire team followed him out.

"Corporal Thoran, do you really think you'll need that cannon?" PFC West, the team's technician asked.

"Yes, not all doors open on request, so I use 'the key'."

"Cut the jawing and keep frosty, this ain't no picnic." Song said.

As soon as the team had disembarked Shayla knew what to do, but this was when the real nerves kicked in. She refused to admit it but she really hated flying solo in a hot zone. "Right gang it's too hot here. I am going to try to touch down on a runabout pad and hold position in case we need to get out in a hurry. They have a disease and we have The Cure." She called out over the comm and then closed the channel. The sweat came fast and poured down her face. "Computer put weapon commands on audible." She set a course and began the rough ride.

Neil was buttoning up his suit when he heard Shayla over the com's and he keyed his own. "In this case THEY are the disease, Corporal," he said dryly, "It's time to disinfect Empok Nor."

Shayla smiled "Yes sir... You get those germs..." She laughed as she managed to dodge two photon torpedoes at the same time.

Gaagi stood with his arms outstretched and tomahawks at the ready. He quickly surveyed the room and smiled when the he saw that it was all clear. He gathered his team. "We are going to act as scouts for RFT 1. I will take point with Moreau. Soto your in the midline, and Heshlack you have the rear. From this point on we speak in code unless it is an emergency. Call out your targets, and take em out quickly. This is a leave no trace Op. Any questions?"

"None Sergeant." Adelaide replied giving her weapon a final check over. This would be no easy ride and acting as scouts came with its own danger, especially as they were ordered to 'make some noise'.

Flarn snorted and you can almost see the smoke come from his nostrils. The Tellarite was at home among combat. It was something that his species had in common with Klingons. The man who rarely smiled, was almost giddy with laughter. He shouldered his rifle and called his team to him. "Alright men this is going to be a sweep and clean mission. RECONN will have point and scout ahead for us. Our main task is to get to Security and shut it down. Anyone we take out along the way is sauce for the goose. Fry you take point, I will have the midline, Pearce you are the out rider, and Zapata you bring up the rear. We take no prisoners, and offer no quarter. The Maquis are involved so it is possible that we may get ambushed, so be ready. Any questions?"

Corporal Fry still felt a bit clumsy in the suit but he gave the Sergeant a thumbs up and asked, "Ready, Sergeant! Let's not keep our guests waiting, hey?" Fry felt his mouth go dry as he mentally prepared himself.

"That's the right attitude Corporal. Hop to it." Flarn said and indicated that Fry should fall into formation.

Aiden's stomach was still churning from the journey, those rolls had almost made him vomit into his suit, but so far he had managed to keep composure. This was his first actual mission with the team, he had trained with them, carried out simulations but he was still fresh and he was eager to please. "Aye sir," he replied, checking his weapon one final time.

As communications specialist, Schultz stayed on board, keeping the lines of communication between the deployed Marines, the Hawkeye, and the Pioneer open. She also kept an eye on station traffic to make sure they weren't caught off-guard.

Rifle Team 2 made their way down the corridors towards Main Engineering. They'd had a few run ins with New Maquis forces, but been able to dispatch them before they could raise the alarm. They all knew their good luck wouldn't last forever, so they redoubled their efforts.
* * *

Meanwhile on the New Maquis Front (30 Minutes Before The Cure Arrives)


Things were going well for Joda Brill, he had been reviewing his data files and noticed an old name came across his desk. It was Makeba Brown. She was back, but how? And why? He was instantly suspicious. He did not share Leyton's trust in former Maquis. Jayna was before Joda's time, he had no idea, she was a former member as well. Joda was debating about calling a meeting with Makeba, to see where her loyalties were. Where they to the Maquis, or to the highest bidder.

After a short time, the suspense of not knowing was bothering him, he decided to pay her visit. She was working in the armory, as he walked in. At first he did not say anything, he was observing her.

Makeba had been assigned to work in in the Armory at least for the time being. She was calibrating the targeting sensors of the photon torpedoes. Her thoughts however, were not on her work. She was focused on the mission ahead, In a matter of about a half hour this station would be swarming with combat. Makeba had to rendezvous with Jayna and get the door open. She looked up from her work to begin to leave and head to the lower pylons, when she noticed Joda standing there. What the frak does he want.? This needs to be short... she thought. "Can I help you?" Makeba made sure to put the edge and attitude in her voice that she was known for.

"What are you doing?" Joda asked knowing darn well, what she was up to. He kept a close eye on her. He was still suspicious, was she a mercenary for hire, or a freedom fighter. What role did she play. He wondered, as he waited for a response.

"I am just finishing up the re-calibration of the the photon torpedoes. Leyton wanted it done on the double. I guess he suspects a retaliatory attack. But, then again you probably already knew that. So perhaps you want to tell me why you are really here." Makeba hoped that her attitude would cause Joda to get straight to the point. He liked to play his cards close to the vest, and Keebs needed to get going.

"I don't answer to you." Joda said with a big smug look on his face. "You answer to me." Joda pointed out to her. Establishing his dominance in this situation. "How long will it take you to complete this task?" Joda asked. She did not know it, but this was another test, on his part. He knew how long the calibration would take, so if she stretched the numbers, he knew she would up to no good.

Makeba knew exactly what Joda was doing. Something that was standard in the Maquis, he was establishing dominance. In a world where there were no ranks someone had to be in charge. So he was taking his chance, she decided to let him have it. "Actually I am already completed. Just finished the last one..." Makeba knew he would check, so she actually performed the task and hoped that they would never be fired. "...Now I will tell you what while you check to make sure that I am not lying, I am going to move on to my next duty." She turned to him with the angriest of looks that she could muster. She was annoyed, she allowed the old Makeba to come back in full. Joda would expect nothing less.

As Makeba expected, Joda was reviewing her work. "Nicely done, so tell me, Makeba. Where you able to gather any intelligence on ship placements or tactics on the Pioneer?" Joda asked, a true maquis would have taken every moment, to gather as much information as they could. So far their mole had provided sensitive information for them, but to his knowledge, Makeba had not.

"No since my capture on Breyet Nor they kept me in a cell in their Brig. A number of people tried to interrogate me including the Captain and their Intelligence division. However, as usual Starfleet came up short. The only thing I know is what I heard guards chatting about in sippets. There is talk of a counter attack. Starfleet has a mind to take the station back and the Pioneer is going to lead the charge. I will tel you one thing you have really pissed Malbrooke off." Makeba knew that she had to give him something or he would never give up. She gave him as much as she could. "You know I have already told all of this to the Gul and the Admiral and they assigned me a number of tasks that will make sure that Malbrooke does not get his way. Now if you are done I can go about doing just that. What do ya say?"

"What makes you think, I care if I hurt Malbrooke's ego?" Joda asked, curious to see what Makeba knew about his animosity with Tyler. Joda was surprised that Makeba would even bring this up, especially at this point. He did not trust her, and this made him trust her even less.

"I don't however, you asked what I knew. So I was merely giving you an answer. I have work to do, so unless you want to explain to the Admiral why it isn't done. I am going to have to leave you." Makeba replied with anger. Joda had annoyed her for the last time. He had no place questioning her loyalty or anything else for that matter.

"I'll be keeping a close eye on you." Joda said, he did not trust her, at all. She was too hot tempered to be an effective Maquis agent, against the Federation. She would not make for a good infiltrator. And he knew it. He considered her to be a mercenary for hire. So what price, were they paying for her loyalty at this moment.

"I figured, see you around..." Makeba said with a devilish grin as she left the weapons locker. She had a rondevouz with The Cure to keep. If all went well Joda would not be around long enough to keep an eye on her.


A Joint Post By

Captain Cornelius Tremble
Marine Commanding Officer/Second Officer, USS Pioneer


Staff Warrant Officer Jennifer Masters
Chief Intelligence Officer, USS Pioneer


Warrant Officer Mira Jayna
Infiltration Specialist, USS Pioneer


Staff Sergeant Flarn
Rifle Fire Team 1 Leader, USS Pioneer


Sergeant Gaagii
RECONN Fire Team Leader, USS Pioneer


Sergeant Miranda Schultz
Communications Specialist, USS Pioneer


Corporal Azure Thompson
Corpsman Command Fire Team, USS Pioneer


Corporal Tyrigus Fry
Rifleman RFT 1, USS Pioneer


Lance Corporal Shayla Kunadt
EVAC Specialist, USS Pioneer


Lance Corporal Rairror Thoran
Munitions Specialist, USS Pioneer


Lance Corporal Adélaïde Moreau
SAR Specialist, USS Pioneer


Private Aiden Pearce
Corpsman RFT 1, USS Pioneer


Makeba Brown
Maquis Tactical Officer


Joda Brill
Maquis Operative

 

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