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The Mouth of The River Part II

Posted on Mon Feb 27th, 2023 @ 10:29pm by Commodore Tyler Malbrooke & Gunnery Sergeant Gaagii & Staff Sergeant Shayla Kunadt & Lieutenant Commander Alyssa Maren & Lieutenant Commander Rowena McGowen & Lieutenant Paul Michael & Lieutenant Ja'sol H'ros & Lieutenant JG Gage Tohoyia & Ensign Rachel Sinclair & Captain Edmund Merrick & Sergeant Major Lachlan Barr & Lieutenant JG Mira Jayna & Ensign Hoa Nhi Nguyen & Ensign Auba Lyna & Lieutenant Junior Grade Mignon Mejia & Senior Chief Petty Officer Leela Capella & Chief Petty Officer Xoán (John) Rocha & Senior Chief Petty Officer Sha’Zen D'Tem & Petty Officer 1st Class S'kaadaar & Sergeant Miranda Schultz & Corporal Adélaïde Moreau
Edited on on Mon Feb 27th, 2023 @ 10:34pm

4,092 words; about a 20 minute read

Mission: Episode 13 - Crooked River
Location: Romulan Encampment - Planet Igion
Timeline: MD006 2330 hrs

Last Time On The Mouth of The River Part I

Nhi was very excited. This would be her first mission out in the field. She could finally show how her training would pay off now. She did a finally check up off her weapons and equipment and then followed her team to their entry point of the camp. She could hear her sister voice echo in her head that she needed to stay serious. She started to whisper it to herself like a mantra.

"Look alive Ensign." Leela said to Nhi.

Nearby S'kaadaar stiffed the air. Romulans. They had a different scent to Vulcans and whatever that Marine Corporal Ravenna was.

Merrick took a few moments tracking where his people and the others were, he shifted his shoulders, checked his gear and then he moved forward, he had a target or would it be targets, that will remain to be seen.

And Now The Conclusion

Tyler sat on the Bridge with a skeleton bridge crew. The fact was most if not all of his senior officers were on the surface at this point. He still was not sure what entirely was going on down there. However, there was one thing he was sure of. He would make sure that Starfleet Intel learned about this. That McGowen would get someone on this.

"Captain, report from our Away Teams, they have engaged the enemy. No word on our Science team yet though, sir." Rocha reported from the Operations station.

Tyler sighed heavily as he looked at the empty viewscreen. Now we wait to find out who is here and who isn't when the dust settles. he thought. "Thank you Chief. Keep your eyes and ears on it.".

Merrick looked at his team which consisted of Lachlan, Azure, Miranda, Thoran. The plan was for him an and his team to go up the center to clear out the Romulans that were there as they searched for the team.

Then he looked at Ja'Sol and the security team. That team consisted of, besides Ja'sol, there was S'kaadaar, Hoa Nhi Nguyen, Auba Lyna, and Leela Capella. It looked like a good team up.

Ja'Sol' was to take his team and come in from the North and heasd towards the Center, and there that was where they would possibly meet.

Merrick looked at his people and gave a nod. "Alright Marines, its time to do what we do best, clear things out of the way to get to our people. Lets go!!" Edmund wasn't going to waste much time monologuing as there was a job to do and it needed to be done. He took off running, leading the charge. Romulans seemed to pop up like moles in what used to be an old earth game. They fired at the incoming marines, Merrick was weaving and zig zagging to make himself not an easy target. He used his rifle to clear the way to the camp which was their goal, There his gait slowed to one that was more cautious for now it was a seek and find scenario, who knows where someone would pop up.

It was such the case for Merrick as he went around a corner near a tent, a Romulan popped up and dove for Merrick slamming him to the ground and it ended up being a bit of a wrestling match between him and the Romulan, both trying to get the upper hand. They broke apart and the Romulan grabbed a knife and was coming at Merrick again who in turn, went to grab his knife but instead of getting knife Merrick palmed his phaser and shot him point blank. The Romulan dropped to the ground as the phaser wasn't set for stun. And the hunt continued on.

Azure offered her hand to Merrick. "Looks like he made the mistake of bringing a knife to a gunfight, eh El-Tee?" She said.

He accepted the hand up from Azure "Thanks." he picked up his rifle that had hit the ground and said to Azure. "Okay be warned they will come out from nowhere." Edmund giving out communication to his people.

Miranda was on the left flank, keeping low and moving in a random pattern to keep from being an easy target. She saw a Romulan raise his weapon, but she got to him first.

Bridge, USS Pioneer

Tyler sat on the bridge and shifted in his seat. He always got antsy when there was not much for him to do. He was the Captain how could he feel so helpless. "Ensign Sinclair, what's our status on the ground. How are our troops doing?"

Standing at the tactical station, Rachel was keeping a close eye on the security team. Secretly part of her longed to be down there with them, but every time she thought about making the request, her mind would go straight back to how she handled the ‘riot’ in the prison which would cause her to remain silent. Hearing Tyler’s voice speak directly to her, She quickly looked up at him, “oh um, the security team is proceeding at pace. The marines……um” she said as she pulled her display back to a wider view, “they appear to be in the right position and they report that they have engaged a few hostiles. No word on the science team yet”

"Frak!" Tyler exclaimed he hated being in the dark. Especially when half his crew was in danger. "Ensign please give us regular updates. Try to triangulate any of the science teams comm badges and keep the channel open I want to hear what is going on down there." Tyler tapped out a message to the team in SCIF. He asked them to relay orders to Mira Jayna. He wanted her to break away from the team and get anything she could on whatever was down there. Tyler knew it was risky but it was high time they learned what went on in this camp.

Giving a nod of acknowledgement, Rachel focused in on her console, trying to find a way to detect life signs more accurately. To be honest, this was T her field of expertise and she usually asked someone from the science department for their help with the sensors, but right not Rachel’s ego was getting in the way. She wanted to make up for her perceived failure earlier down in the prison. Although both the General and Ja’sol said that she did a great job for her first away mission, she felt that she shouldn’t have let her emotions get the better of her.

Romulan Encampment - Planet Igion

"Lachlan, Azure, Miranda, Thoran be careful!" Merrick growled out as a few more Romulans were flushed out from where they had been hiding. He winced slightly as he moved wrong, Merrick feeling the tenderness forming from the earlier fight he had with the Romulan, the bastards hit hard.

An bolt of energy just missed his head and setting the nearby tent afire. Merrick moved foward, He ducked down to keep his head a bit lower, not wanting his head to be an easy target. Another shot hit the ground just in front of him, someone seemed to be tracking him. He thought that the sharp shooters of their squad had taken out the snipers unless one of the current opponents had gained a slightly higher ground. He motioned for someone to keep watch, and see where this would be sniper could be hiding.

Then Merrick feinted to the left then twisted to the right, the shot missing him then he dove forward to get behind some cover. Two shots hit the crates, he hunkered behind. The shots seemed to be coming from another pile of crates just barely higher than the crates Merrick was hidden behind, pressing his body tightly against the ground. He hoped that his people will be able to deal with that wanna be sniper.

Rarrior stood up his HUD tracking the sniper. When it was on target, the Orion fired 'The Key'. A ball of ionized energy shot forth rending its target to particles. "Ashes to ashes, dust to dust." He said.

Nhi had ducked behind some crates for cover as she clenched her phaser rifle to her chest. Disruptor phaser blast flew over her head. She could feel the adrenaline rushed through her body. She only came up from cover to shoot back. She cursed in Vietnamese as she then shouted, "Orders!"She really didn't feel on her place her. She never been in the field before, and this was exactly what her sister had warned her about. She took a deep breath and then looked around for a different place she could rush too.

"I advise keeping your head down, ma'am." Leela said making her way over to Nguyen's position. Popping her own head up briefly to fire back at the enemy.

S'kaadaar joined them disruptor blasts bouncing harmlessly of her scales.

Miranda dropped to the ground, staying just high enough to take out enemy combatants as they were flushed out.

Their section cleared out and moving forward, Merrick could feel the sweat bead on his forehead and trickle down his back. They were nearing their goal, and getting things secure. From what he had been hearing through the varioius communications, looked like they were going to meetup very soon, and then he saw.. the security team.

[Elsewhere in the compound]

Jayna heard the firing, picking out both Romulan and Federation weapons. She briefly wondered if she should continue toward what her tricorder said was the scientists or go help the Marines. She decided the Marines wouldn't need her and continued on to where the missing personnel were heading in her general direction.

From her position on the captured tower, Mercy used 'Ruby' to take down Romulan security personnel. She spotted a figure in Romulan
uniform moving hesitantly around a building. Her HUD told her that the figure was a Bajoran Vulcanoid female. The Romulans weren't known for the inclusive attitudes. "She's one of ours." She told Sina.

"Behind her." Sina said her heightened senses picking up a figure in Romulan uniform approaching the other figure weapon drawn.

Mercy took aim at the Romulan, took a breath, and letting it out as she gently squeezed the trigger.

The Romulan hit the ground before he knew what was happening.

"Sina, monitor the friendly, I'll keep watch."

"Aye." Sina said making her way down from the tower and keeping to the shadows once she was on the ground.

Jayna sensed someone behind her. Without seeming to notice, she altered her position just enough to head for somewhere less open while she checked her tricorder to pinpoint her would-be assailant so she'd only need one shot. Just then, she sensed two other people ahead of her as one of them fired. The Romulan behind her fell to the ground. Marines. She nodded her thanks toward he two and continued in the direction of what the map identified as the prison complex.

Ja'sol was beginning to show some sweat from the amount of physical labor they had to contend with to get to the point of where they were. The team had to contend with booby traps and pitfalls near the roadway and a few snipers and patrols that had popped up along the way. They had entered the compound on the north side as planned and had barely reached the rally point on time to meet up with the other groups. " My team is good to go, just a few light wounds but nothing that would slow us down, Let's hit the prisoner barracks from every side and get people out of here. "

[Prisoner Barracks]

Shayla had sweat pouring out of every pore despite the heat of the outside. She supported the weight of Mignon as the woman had to be moved without her foot. She was uneasy that she had to follow this Romulan who stated he was Starfleet. The only good thing that seemed to happen for the Marine was her head cleared a small amount.

Mignon was in an odd, half-lucid state. Now that her foot was gone she felt immeasurably relieved, as if a weight had been lifted from her. At the same time, the pain was making it hard to stay conscious--or to care. Alyssa had done something to her leg so it didn't hurt as much as before, but Mignon desperately wanted to sleep. She was only vaguely aware of others around her, of the man that seemed to be leading them. There was something odd about him. Something...wrong, but she couldn't pinpoint what it was. She didn't even have the mental strength to warn Alyssa.

Alyssa's head throbbed. Not like it had before. The buzz was mostly gone, but she was tired and felt like she'd been in a dance contest with a bunch of Klingons. It made her telepathy feel hazy. Or was it whatever drug they'd been given? She was occasionally aware of others around them, but not as many as she'd expected. She caught the sharp, mental tang of a Romulan coming toward their flank. She wasn't sure where Sha'Zen was, and she didn't trust Gage, so as soon as the guard was in range, she hit him with her blowgun dart. It made her feel immeasurably better. She wasn't completely at her captor's mercy. Not anymore.

It was then that she picked up on someone concentrating on finding her and the other scientists. She slowed, prepping another dart in case she needed it. Alyssa then realized she recognized the other person. Jayde? No, that was the sister. Jayna. The half-Vulcan had spent a number of hours in astrometrics. If she was nearby, that meant that others were, too. "Shayla, Sha'Zen, we have cavalry."

Sha'Zen breathed in deeply the outside air. It smelled a little like home.
Her mind was clearer, but her 'pet' was still hanging around. At the moment it stood in the shade of a tree grooming itself. She remained on guard even after hearing Alyssa words.

The science team was close, and coming in her direction, Jayna realized. She picked up all four of them on her tricorder, and one other person she didn't recognize. She changed direction, noting that the Marine units were also coming their way. It looked like they were going to have a successful mission.

Sina approached Jayna making herself known. "Have you found them?" She asked.

The intel officer nodded. "I have." She showed Sina the small tricorder on her wrist. "There are five of them, and they're moving this way." She had yet to determine if the fifth was friend or foe, but they'd soon discover that.

She fell in step beside the Marine as they continued toward the missing scientists.

When the teams came into view, Merrick gave a nod towards Ja'sol.

"Looks like we've done the clean up work now, where are the people we're here to rescue." Merrick queried.

S'kaadaar sniffed the air. Her uniform was burnt from disruptor blasts, but she was unhurt.

Gage felt a wave of relief wash through him as the new group of Starfleet personnel appeared. Every step through the research facility he'd been expecting an ambush. He started to wave at the newcomers but realized how strange that would appear. Instead he held up his hands and waited for them to approach. When they got close enough to hear him, he spoke. "You're a sight for sore eyes, sir," Gage said. "Lieutenant Gage Tahoyia, Starfleet Intelligence. I'm hoping that you're going to get us out of here ASAP."

When the Marines and Security reached the Science team, Azure moved forward to examine them. All were suffering the effects of ketamine poisoning and Ensign Mejia was missing her foot. The Corpsman did what she could to stabilise the Ensign for travel. "EL-Tee, we need a medevac, I've stabilised Ensign Mejia for now, but she needs treatment in Sickbay." She told Lieutenant Merrick.

Edmund gave a nod to Azure, "Take care of that." he said then turned his attention to the one claiming to be of Star Fleet Intelligence.

Jayna stayed off to the side, observing the science team and the man who led them. She was surprised that Commander McGowan wasn't aware of an operative here. Or if she was, she didn't tell anyone to look out for him. She hoped she'd have a chance to hear his story later.

Sha'Zen suddenly pointed the disruptor, she's obtained from one of the Romulans, at Tahoyia, and before anyone could react, she fired.

The beam passed within millimetres of the Intel Officer's head and impact with a target behind him. There was the sound of something hitting the dirt and in seconds the body of a Romulan in a clocking suit appeared.

Putting down the weapon, the SerNumi said. "I need a swim, any want to join me?"

Before waiting for an answer, she headed off in the direction of the beach.

While the SerNumi headed for a swim, Merrick raised an eyebrow towards the Romulan. "I doubt what you say is true, what can you say to prove who you truly are?" Merrick having his phaser pointed at the person with the scientists. "If you are who you say you are, have you been given a code phrase where with you can prove your identity?" Edmund was tired, filthy and the sweat was trickling down his back.

Shayla stood there and watched what transpired. As she watched she attempted to maintain her grip on reality, on her sanity. The faces of all the people, people she knew and did not know melted together. Foam began to ooze from her mouth and the break from reality became total. "You are all out to kill me, I will not let you..." She screamed and breathed heavily. Somewhere deep within her what remained of her self cried out for help and raised her phaser to her chest. Shayla shot herself and fell into a heap stunned. Her subconscious would rather her out then allow her to cause harm to her friends.

Jayna hurried over to Shayla to make sure she was alive, then took the phaser and anything else she might use to hurt herself until they could get her back to the ship and to sickbay. She stood to flag down a medic.

"Can we deal with him later? He shot the Romulans that came to get us and brought us out here," Alyssa said. She was bone-weary and still fighting the urge to do herself harm. "We need to get away from this place." She lost her train of thought and paused. "Must get away.... Experimentation..." Her voice trailed off and she shook her head to focus. "They gave us...something. Don't know where the woman in charge is right now. But the others need immediate help." She once again began to recite the periodic table of elements as a distraction.

"Tohoyia Zulu five five seven," Gage said, giving the Marine Captain his security identification code automatically. They'd been trained to recite the phrase immediately as it reduced the chances of being killed. Wait a minute. Did someone just try to shoot me? he thought after speaking. "I think we really should be going."

Azure approached Tohoyia. "Sir, are you injured?" She asked. Noticing the look on the man's face she added. "Oh, and if Sha'Zen were trying to kill you, you'd be dead."

"He doesn't smell Romulan." S'kaadaar said about Tohoyia.

"Perhaps, but the only way to know for sure, is to cut him open." Leela said.

"True." S'kaadaar agreed.

"Cut it out, you both of you, you're scaring the poor lieutenant, he doesn't know you're joking." Sina said.

"The code seems legitimate, but we'll have to check that out on the ship." Merrick replied, turning to Ja'sol "Do you agree?" he was ready to get out of this place and to what he considered something not so crazy.

Ja'sol had a grim determined look upon his face, he was getting tired of this and was ready to wrap this mission up and put this matter to rest. " Let's get back to the ship and check up on this code, and if it is legit then we'll put it to good use. "

Ensign Sinclair had reported that the camp was in chaos and the Jutrai troops had begun to seize full control. Add to that report was that everyone was back aboard the ship albeit some severely injured both physically and emotionally. Still Tyler took solace that the family was back together again. As soon as he was informed that everyone was aboard Tyler was told that General Tivau of the Jutrai military hailed them.

When the General appeared onscreen she spoke first. "Captain before we speak any further I need to know if all of your people are back aboard your vessel." "Yes they are. But what is going on?" Tyler rose from his chair and took the few steps down toward the viewscreen almost as if he tried to get closer to Tivau. "We are destroying that camp from orbit." At that moment a Jutrai vessel decloaked and opened fire on the planet's surface. "Captain we cannot thank you enough for what you and your crew have done here. Our sympathies go out to the crew and families of those injured. For what it is work Captain you have made a friend here."

The image of what just happened burned itself into Tyler's head. All those Romulans were now dead, including whoever was responsible for this. This was something that he could not believe. "General know that you have a friend as well." The viewscreen changed and the image of the Jutrai ship continuing to fire could be seen. Tyler returned to his seat and as he sat spoke again. "Lieutenant Michael set a course for Poseidon Station in the Aquil Sector, QSD 1 please..." He paused as he looked around at his bridge crew, his family. These would be the people that would watch his child grow up, and he could not be prouder. "Giddy-Up!" Tyler smiled as his ship made the jump to slipstream.

A Joint Post By:

Chief Petty Officer Sha’Zen D'Tem
Biologist, USS Pioneer

Commodore Tyler Malbrooke
Commanding Officer, USS Pioneer

Sergeant Shayla Kunadt
EVAC Specialist HQ, The Cure
USS Pioneer

Staff Sergeant Gaagii
RECONN, Team 2, The Cure
USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Commander Alyssa Maren
Chief Science Officer, USS Pioneer

Staff Warrant Officer Mira Jayna
Assistant Chief Intelligence Officer, USS Pioneer
Intelligence Liaison, The Cure

Sergeant Miranda Schultz
Communications Specialist - The Cure

Lieutenant Paul Michael
Chief Flight Control Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Junior Grade Gage Tohoyia
Infiltration Specialist, USS Pioneer

Petty Officer First Class S'kaadaar
Security Officer, USS Pioneer

Ensign Auba Lyna
Security Officer, USS Pioneer

Senior Chief Petty Officer Leela Capella
Master-At-Arms, USS Pioneer

Chief Petty Officer Xoan Rocha
Operations Officer, USS Pioneer

Ensign Mignon Mejia
Alien Archaeologist/Anthropologist, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Ja'sol H'ros
Chief Security/Tactical Officer, USS Pioneer

Captain Edmund Merrick
The Cure Executive Officer, USS Pioneer

General Tivau
Commanding Officer
Igion Defense Forces


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