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Posted on Thu Nov 4th, 2021 @ 12:27pm by Lieutenant Commander Larim Myles & Lieutenant Elen Diari & Alket "Al" Marec
Edited on on Tue Nov 9th, 2021 @ 5:43am

Mission: Episode 11 - Family Matters
Location: ACMO Personal Quarters
Timeline: MD005 1900 hrs

“…. Daddy,” Abigail had been talking as she and Richard walked down the corridors towards their quarters, “I talked to Amanda Jinkins today, and she told me I should cut my hair shorter and die it black, what do you think?”

The girl had been very talkative and her father did his best to listen intently but it had been a rather long day and he hadn’t slept that well the knight before. Abigail smiled as she looked up at her father for a moment as they reached the door to their quarters.

Richard hesitated long enough for the hiss of the door opening before he looked over to her for a short reply, “I love your hair just the way it is sweetheart and how would black hair look with all your dresses?”

As the physician spoke, he stepped inside their home and noticed a flicker of light coming from the COM station. Richard knew he had not left the device working, that he had cleared his security codes before leaving but his pale eyes spotted the screens image scrolling quickly.

“What’s the matter Daddy,” his daughter asked as she came in behind him.

Dr. Ballston didn’t answer her, he merely tapped his COM badge, =/\=Ballston to Engineering, terminate all connection to the COM station in my quarters, I think it’s been, hacked.=/\= Only a moment later he tapped his badge again, =/\= Ballston to Security, I believe we have a computer system has been breached, I am unsure if it has been done remotely or from within =/\=.

“Oh,” Abigail said softly as she stood next to her father, “are we in trouble Daddy?”

“I don’t know,” Richard replied, “I don’t know.”

=/\=Diari here, Ricky. That's your comms locked now. Coming up to isolate it from the network. I'll be there in five. =/\=

=/\= Thank you, Lieutenant,=/\= Richard replied falling back on the old formalities of bygone years when he was considered a genetically engineered disaster.

He stood there a second more with his daughter looking on tilting her head slightly and then he moved towards the small kitchenette, would you like anything Abigail, some water or juice."

"A glass of water, please," the girl replied walking over to the replicator with him.

As the glass began to form it took on an odd shape and then a smelly green ooze began to flow down the wall onto the floor, "Oh-oh," Abigail said as her dark eyes widened, "Daddy, it's not supposed to do that is it?"

"No," replied the physician, "but it's not the first time."

"Not the first time," Abigail enquired with a look of concern on her young face.

"No, it's actually something done before," Richard replied letting out a sigh, "But that story will have to wait."

Tapping his COM badge he opened the connections again, " Ballston to Diari, you might want to look at the replicator while you're here, seems they took control of that as well."

Elen chimed the door, and came in. She smelt the air, and looked over at the ooze coming from the replicator. "Ricky, Abby darling, I think it'd be best if went outside", making her way back out.

=/\= Diari to Security. We've got a level 2 biohazard problem in Dr. Ballston's quarters. Need HAZMAT here stat, and the Replicator network locked down. =/\= She was calm, her old sci-ops training kicking in, almost instinctively.

=/\= Diari to Dave. We have a problem. Wardlaw protocol. =/\= her voice rising in panic now to one of her engineers

"Ricky, Don't worry. we'll sort this." she said, trying to convince herself more than the doctor.

Abigail followed the engineer out as did Richard though he was rather calm and placed an arm around hid daughter to reassure her, "I know you will Elen." He offered her a smile, "I don't think they intend to harm anyone, at least right now, more harassment than anything."

=/\=Diari, this is Myles. On the way. Ive got a man looking into the computer and Ill dispatch HAZMAT right away.=/\= the Chief of security said, entering a turbolift. =/\=Myles to HAZMAT team. Report to Dr Ballstons quarters. Level 2 Biohazard. Will meet you there=/\=
=/\+ Myles. I have Dave in Engineering on the computers, have your guy liaise with him. He's at the main desk. =/\= She answered.

"Do we need to stay until you've finished?" asked Richard as he looked to Elen, "I can take Abigail to get something to eat while you investigate, "I won't be going anywhere you can't find me."

El walked down a couple of doors from Richard's quarters and chimed the door. "No Ricky. It's alright." she replied.

An elderly Cardassian opened the door " Elensha, dear. I thought we weren't meeting until this evening, or have I lost track of time again?" he asked.

"No, Al, it's still early". She replied, "I was just wondering if we could use your replicator and have a rest here until security's finished."

Al smiled "Of course, of course. Come in, please. Make yourselves at home. I apologise for the mess, my colleague Mr Andy and I are still unpacking." beckoning them in.

"Hello again, young Miss Abigail. What a pleasure to see you reunited with your father." Al kept smiling, bowing down to Abigail's level. "Dr. Ballston I presume ?", he tickled at the literary pun, straightening back up.

Abigal smiled broadly at the aging man as she saw him. Her young face beamed as she recognized her new neighbor. She looked at her father for a moment expectantly before stepping into Al's quarters and letting her dark eyes look around the place.

Richard smiled at the man, relieved there was a place for the two of them to go and escape what could be a scary ordeal for his young daughter. Ballston recognized the rather human expression and he nodded at the Cardassian male, "thank you, AI," the physician said as he entered, his daughter dutifully by his side, "I apologize for the inconvenience."

"it's not an inconvenience. Not at all. I'm happy for the company. The ship's computer is a terrible conversationalist." Al replied, hunting in a nearby box, and with a tinkle of china, pulled out two cups, and filled them with tea from the pot on his desk. "Have some tea, and please sit and rest a while."

"I was hoping to speak to you at some point Dr Ballston, one of my roles here is to be tutor of the ships company's children, so I wished to discuss Miss Abigail's education." He continued, looking through the mass of things on the desk for a notebook and stylus.

After a few minutes Larim arrived with the Hazmat team. He directed them to their duties and decided to check on everyone. He saw Dr Ballston. "Everybody ok, Doc?" he asked

Richard was about to answer AI when he heard the question, "other than the ship's computer system and the food replicator in my quarters, we're fine, I just was hoping to spare Abigail all this."

The physician looked between the security officer and the tutor, "I apologize, my manors, Commander Larim Myles this is Al, Al this is Commander Larim Myles."

Al stood up and shook Larim's hand "Pleasure to meet you, commander. Would you care to join us for tea ?" He sat back down and winced "Ah. Got up a bit too fast there." rubbing his hip "A hundred and twenty five will do that to you."

"Id love to." Larim said, outting on a smile. "And its a pleasure to meet you as well, Al." he added

El stuck her head round the open door "Larim, your guys are bagging up the replicator just now. I've asked for a new one to be brought up, along with a comms board, any preference on types, Ricky ? It'll take me about quarter of an hour to fit once the guys have cleaned up the mess. The gloop stinks to high heaven, so I'll cycle the air in there too. Nothing for you to worry about, apart from who did it."

Richard smiled and shook his head to indicate no, "something like I had, would be fine Elen. He chuckled, "you're right, I do need to worry about who did it, the last time they did something like this there was an internal assault on the ship by a group called HGP, Humans for Genetic Putirty, I really don't think they're responsible this time."

"Perhaps it may be prudent to have a heightened level of security, Commander, under the circumstances ?" Al asked Myles, pouring some tea.

"I agree, Al. It never hurts to have an extra bit of protection." The security chief said. "If they can hack a replicator, presumably remotely." he said, taking a sip of tea. "Then a lock isnt going to be that much trouble.

"Could this is be due to the unfortune matter with your dear wife on Empok Nor? My deepest condolences, Doctor, as a widower myself, at least we have our daughters to support us." He continued, smiling down at Abigail, who was looking through some of his books, sprawled across the bunk.

"I believe it does," Richard replied, "she was murdered by a radical group from my homeworld that." He glanced over at his daughter that seemed to be intent on the books she was looking at, "they also held Abigail for while trying to make her believe I was responsible for it."

Al rubbed his chin "I think it may be prudent to inform the Captain, or at the least the command staff of this. In case they go for a major system as a next step, or another attempt at taking her. They may have a protocol for this sort of event."

Elen leaned in again, looking down at Abigail "Oooh, The Ceil Gardens." She pointed at the painting in the book "That's where I'm from." She turned round " Well, that's the atmosphere cycling, hopefully the room won't smell as bad now. Larim, the comms showed it's was a non- Federation node link, somehow they bypassed security completely, we're going up against pros here. No additional hardware found, so it was a software hack."

The Azzian Physician drew in a deep breath, "I have no problem notifying the captain, he may want to call a special investigation on this."

Glancing around at his fellow officer that were there, "I really appreciate your taking care of this so quickly, if you have any questions I'll answer them to the best of my ability. You all can read my personal file, they've corrected the mistakes that were there though I haven't actually looked at it in a while myself."

"No Problem, Ricky. It's what I do- fix things. Only question I have is how are going to keep this little munchkin safe, apart from giving her a pet Marine? " El asked.

"I don't know," Richard stated frankly and solemnly, "I can't send her to her mothers, quite Franky it would put her in more danger, she's safer on the Pioneer than on her homeworld."

"Apart from assigning one of my guys to shadow you, I'm drawing a blank myself." Larim said. "Unless we took turns babysitting her." He began. "At least it'd keep the parties responsible guessing." he shrugged.

Richard shrugged and shook his head, "we have to do something as much as I hate to be such a burden on everyone. I could check and see if I could take her to work at least some times."

Larim nodded. "Sounds good." He said. "Offer still stands though if you need it. Im sure Lax wouldnt mind."

"Well, I do hope Miss Abigail will be in attendance at her classes with me." Al added, "Elen, are you still in contact with our friends the Marshall brothers? Perhaps they could create a robotic defender for her, which would be quite the diversion for Eiji and Hideki."

Elen smiled "I'll call them on the new comms system, be a nice test. Haven't spoken with Hideki for a while", almost laughing at the use of her friend's formal name.

Richard smiled and nodded, "a robotic defender, I might need one of those," he chuckled at his assertion knowing that probably wouldn't be necessary. "I'm afraid I haven't had the privilege of meeting either of these two men but I'm sure they can come up with something."

Al quietly laughed "One thing is quite certain, the Marshall brothers coming up with things. They are notorious for their creations among the engineering fraternity. Whether or not the Captain or Commander deems it safe enough for the ship is another matter entirely."

The physician chuckled at the comment and looked at Al and nodded, "let's hope this time it keeps her safe and the ship."

El returned after a few minutes. "Well, that's the new replicator and comms panel in. I'd give the 'cator a couple of hours to settle before making anything big. Spoke with the Marshall brothers, Itchy and Thor are sending something over. It'll be coming by FPS, so Deus knows when it'll arrive, sometimes I think they use wormholes."

"Wormholes," Richard replied raising an eyebrow, "I only know of one stable wormhole, are there others?"

"I think Miss Elen is making light of the idiosyncrasies of the Postal network, and how delivery times do not correlate with distance, my dear Doctor. Commander, in the interim, perhaps a security detail may be prudent, if possible." Al remarked to the two men.

Larim nodded, "You've read my mind." Larim said. "I agree completely Al." he said. "Nothing too big though, as I dont want to make you a bigger target. And also to avoid disrupting your life. But a detail of no more than 3 men should be fine." he said

"You are the expert in these matters, commander, so I defer to your good graces, hopefully the good doctor will agree when he awakens." Al answered, lowering his tone, once he noticed Dr. Ballston and Abigail had nodded off. He went over and replaced the book in Abigail's hand with a blanket, and put a small soft toy next to her, before taking the blanket off the top bunk and draping it over Richard.

A Joint Post By

Lieutenant Commander Larim Myles
Chief Security/Tactical Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Elen Diari
Chief Engineering Officer, USS Pioneer

Alket "Al" Marec
Teacher, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Richard Ballston
Assistant Chief Medical Officer, USS Pioneer

Abigail Ballston
Child, USS Pioneer


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