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Taking the Bull by the Horns

Posted on Fri Dec 28th, 2018 @ 7:23am by Makeba Brown & Staff Sergeant Gaagii & Sergeant Shayla Kunadt & Staff Warrant Officer Jennifer Masters - Calhoun & Major Cornelius Tremble & Xoica & Sergeant Azure Thompson
Edited on on Fri Dec 28th, 2018 @ 2:55pm

Mission: Episode 5 - It Would Be Their Pleasure
Location: Tadian IV
Timeline: MD009 1645hrs

Last Time On Labyrinth

The Orion heavy weapons specialist entered the room and saw the insectoid things. "Those are some big bugs." He said. "Lucky for you, I'm the Exterminator." And fired his TFL-16 Isomagnetic Disintegrator. It hit one of the creatures, turning it to little more than goo.

The last creature went down in a neon mix of phaser fire and then silence hung in the air. The marines shifted moving back into overwatch automatically following their training.

And Now The Conclusion

Tuor and her escort made it back to the hanger bay and the dedicated transporter they’d found there. Checking her tactical board, she swore and touched her communication device, “In’to’ak. Beam us from this place, the mission is blown. This place is infested with Federation Marines. Charges are running and we will drop a torpedo on it from outside the atmosphere to be sure.” She was not looking forward to telling Cha’dal, but the death of the arms dealer would be suffice. Looking through the bay windows, she heard the acknowledgement from her operations officer as the Bird of Prey came to hover above the smugglers hold and she felt the transporter beam grab ahold of her.

Quiet descended after the fire fight and Neil took stock, then hit his comm, “Lead to Razor. We’ve had contact with some sort of centipede type creature. Status?”

"aye, we ran intae a one of the creepy crawlies also, an some klingons. one down but stable, Ah got a bit ay a scart but aam fine. followin' whit we think is a Romunal an' at leest two other targets."

"I am going to need a shower, but otherwise fine." Gaagii responded over the comms. "It seems that we are not the only ones looking for our friend."

The cargo area was littered with bodies, most of them foe but Lance Corporal Taaj was down, bio signs steady. Private H’rel took an autodoc from a pouch and placed it over the wound on Taaj and thirty seconds later indicator lights flashed and he removed it. Taaj’s wound had been swathed in bandage webbing and H’rel looked to Wilson, “He’s stabilized, Gunny but we’ll have to stretcher him out.”

The gunny gave a look around, this was literally the worst issue she could think of. Short of all of them dying that was. She needed to get two people to stretcher him out, but then that left fewer boots to actual fight if they needed to. "Aye, we can stretcher him out and then mak ur way bak in."

The gunny finally started to move after they had assessed injury. "Ae rite let's actually get to going after tha' Romulan alredy." They would push up through the base, clearing as they went.

Gaagii nodded to Wilson as he acknowledged her order. He then started to head down the cave passage toward where the Romulan was last seen. he kept his carbine raised and ready as he was pretty sure that there would be other hostiles along the way. This also gave the sniper the added benefit of being able to use his scope as a scanning device.

Wilson kept up right behind Gaagii the pair turning a corner and coming on a large overly round and greenish device. About half the size of a shuttle craft. "Cover me." Moving slowly around the thing until she got a panel and a read out. "Makes ye wonder how they gie these dammn hin'.... och my romulan? klingon? whit ever tha' heel thes is, is bad but.. diz 'at look like a coont doon tae ye?"

She flipped out tricorder open and pointed it at the Panel, using it to translate and Scan. "Oh of coarse..." She hit her com, opening it up to more or less everyone on the mission. "Awrite, Ah hate tae be 'that lass but, we need tae be makin' uir way tae tha' exit in' a fast an' disorderly manner unless we aw want tae fin' it whit a wee matter anti-matter explosion is lich... All teams pull out of tha' area to a sef distance."

She motioned to Gaagii to start moving quickly. "The thing is ah shuttle warp core, and it's set to blow, let's gat the Ell outa here."

You did not have to tell Gaagii twice. He fell into step behind Wilson as he covered their escape. The large yet nimble man backpedaled the idea was if they were stuck there when it blew he would take the brunt which would allow the Gunny to escape. "How much time do we have?"

Wilson was moving at a pretty good jog not wanting to exhast herself, knowing that pacing and breathing where the key. Only looking down at the tricorder. "331 seconds an' countun. We should be mostly fine.. maybe."

Gaagii smirked "Gunny I like those odds. but we should pick up the pace." He kicked his step up into a double step.

She did indeed pick up the pace, her suit making a fuss again, as it started to leak a little again, but it wasn't a huge issue, not enough to really cause much issue. "Ya, I hate des dam thin's but we should be fine, just fun a bit fastur" The two of them would clear the area with a comfortable amount of spare time, no need for dramatic exits.

Neil surveyed the corridor and then his shredded enviro suit, “Right, lets find this arms dealer before any more playmates decide to show up. We move now.” Once the command team was back into a semblance of readiness, they began following the corridor the Brown had indicated. He was conscious of Brown behind him, the barrel of his own carbine occasionally sweeping close to space he was occupying and it was…distracting.

Makeba was keenly aware of the fact that they were travelling farther into the proverbial hornet's nest. She was a little on edge as she wanted to see her friend, but was not sure the kind of welcome her friend would give her. The report that Romulans and Klingons were present struck Makeba as odd. X what the hell did you get yourself into. she thought. In an effort to alleviate her stress, she decided to get into the good Lieutenant's head. During her side sweeps with her carbine she simply pushed a little too close to him for his comfort. Every time he looked back she simply smirked. In truth she had no intention of harming any of the Starfleet personnel, that is unless they shot first.

Jenn pointed around with her weapon as she stayed close to the group. She was used to dealing with the scums and dirt bags of this galaxy. But with huge centipedes, that was something new. She wondered what else this place had in store for them.

Azure noticed Brown's behaviour and looked at the team's vitals, they were slightly raised, but that was to be expected under the circumstances.

They traveled ten meters down the corridor when he stopped. His tricorder vambrace was shredded, but the sensor unit itself was built into the collar he wore and a low humming began. He stopped and began searching and after a few moments, he nodded. “I’m getting a response signal to the one your asset gave us, Ms. Masters. There must be a hidden bulkhead here.” Turning to glance at Brown, he said, “You’re so knowledgeable, Ms. Brown, any ideas on how to find this spider hole before we’re up to our ears in beasties?”

Moving to a cover position, the marines with them spread to cover both directions. Leaning towards Azure, he said “Corporal, if Brown tries to get cute, stun her until her eyes glow.”

Azure nodded her acknowledgement of the Lieutenant's order as she used her antenna to scan the area.

Makeba took a look around and then laughed out loud. X was smart and if she were not there the bonehead Marines would probably miss it. "Lieutenant it is right here..." Her voice trailed off as she walked a few yards ahead of him. "There is a door right here, it was meant to look like the rock wall but here it is. Shall I open it?"

Makeba nodded with a knowing grin. Out of everyone present she probably knew X the best and as such knew that she would have something up her sleeve should someone try to enter unannounced. Makeba tool a stance up against the wall and next to the door's control panel. This would allow her to avoid anything that might trigger. With that knowledge Makeba simply followed orders and cycled the door to open it. Sure enough as the door opened a bull came charging through.

The mottled roan bull rolled it's head, eyes wide as it looked at the people scattered about the opening, then lowered it's head and continued it's move. Blowing, snot dripped from it's nose as the red eyes focused on Warrant Officer Masters.

Before Jenn could move aside, the bull had taken her up his horns. It was then she felt the boxing cloves attached to the horns pushing her backwards and against the wall. The bull sniffed and snorted a gulf of snot over her suit, before pulling back and dropping her on the ground.

Jenn coughed as it rattled her inside a bit, and crushed her lungs within her ribs. She pushed herself up wiped the snot off her. "Well, this just got more fun." She while dusted herself off. She looked to the bull that turned around walking away from Jenn.

A sharp cackle came from the back of the room behind the door. Xoica walked through the door clapping her hands. "Wonderful, Starfleet intell send me a Princess and her escort." She turned to Neil. "Lieutenant, what did you do, to be busted to escort duties, wouldn't your efforts be best spend on a star ship or something?" She whistled to call the bull to her and patted his head.

Jenn took a deep breath, but she tried to hold back. She gave a killing look towards Xoica.

Xoica kept smiling as she then saw Makeba. "I should've known," She said. "Only you would know where to find me, these starfleet marines wouldn't have found me even if I was standing right in front of them." Even though something inside her was happy to see her, she kept standing next to the bull, leaning a bit on him. Makeba by now knew she betrayed the Maquis. She looked away. "Well, are we waiting for the Romulans to join the party, or we leaving?" She asked stoically.

At the sight of Xoica, Makeba Brown was overtaken by two emotions. First elation combined with love and lust for just seeing her lover again. The other was anger at what the Rigelean had done to the Maquis. Before anyone could answer Xoica, Makeba sauntered up to her placed a passionate kiss on her lips. When she broke the kiss she spoke. "Well it is nice to see you too. For now we should get out of here, you and I will settle our debts later."

In orbit, the Halo's sensors detected movement on the surface of Tadian IV and recognized a Klingon Bird of Prey rising slowly, like a shark from the surface. The Halo registered it as a B'rel class
though it was moving slowly as it struggled through the planets atmosphere. An emitter lit up, and a laser strobed out data to the Hawkeye, causing Corporal Kunadt's comm system to light up and display the bird of prey's presence.

Shayla's jaw dropped as she read the screen and learned of the bird of prey. "Well s*&t! She immidiately directed the Hawkeye to the secondary coordinates. This would place her on the far side of the planet from the team. But it had the benefit of keeping her hidden a bit longer from the Klingons. She took the channel to Tremble of the team off of mute. =/\=This your eye in the sky and I am not alone. We have Klingons and it seems they are not happy that we crashed their party. They are struggling to break atmo. I am moving to secondary coordinates, repeat secondary coordinates. Please advise..."=/\=

Neil eyed Xoica, letting Masters deal with the bull while a marine moved up and swept through the hidden chamber. "Marines go where we're needed and your request for pick up didn't include anything about the other guests to the party. If I were you, Xoica I'd be happy SI sent us in or you might be in hiding into perpetuity."

He stepped to one side as his comm crackled. They had dropped enhancers and booster packs as they went, trying to give them something. His headphones broke up but Gunny Wilson's strep sent a chill down his back. He pulled out a PADD and began keying in a message.

They had ran hardwired boosters outside and a repeater to a zip/squeal burst transmitter that would give them limited emergency contact with the Hawkeye. It was extremely limited however and power would burn out after three or four messages. The message from Kunadt caused the chill on his back to freeze and he took stock for a second, then spoke into his mic.

"Hawkeye, this is Lead. Go to option three: dust-off post haste. They're going to blow the place, then seal the deal from orbit."

"Lead to Recon. Secure the hanger for immediate exfil through. There's a bird of prey moving lifting off so we should be clear of ground threat. I say should be, stay on your toes. We're moving to join now."

Turning to his squad, he gestured down the corridor. "Voice's friends wired explosives and a bird of prey is pushing for atmosphere, so we need to get out of here now. Hawkeye's should be inbound for dust-off just outside this complex. We don't want to miss the bus, so lets move"

Shayla was halfway to the secondary coordinates when the message from Niel came through. She sighed deeply through her nose as she was not looking forward to what was next but such was her life. She keyed a button on her seat and a sequence of restraints engaged securing her to the chair. "Computer take inertial dampeners to half, and reroute that power to the atmospheric thrusters. Place tactical on voice command." As the computer carried out it's orders she glanced at the bird of prey on the scanners it had leveled it's ascent but was still struggling. "Whelp thank the gods for out dated birds. Right hold on to your garters, here goes nothing..." With those last comments she engaged a high speed descent. The g forces of the planet's atmosphere began to take some toll on her as she spoke into the comm channel.

=/\=Lead this is Hawkeye I am coming in hot and on a reverse trajectory. Unavoidable must stay off of Kingon's radar. Klingons are weapons hot. Repeat this will be a hot dust off be prepared to jump..."=/\= Her voice strained but her hands did not as the piloted the shuttle down toward the surface.

Gaagii received the Lieutenant loud and clear. "Gunny it looks like we are buggin out." He spoke as he continued to backpedal. As they turned a corner a Klingon attacked with his Mek'Leth dagger. After a short skirmish Gaagii buried a tomahawk into the Klingon's shoulder and moved on.

She gave a large nod in her hemlet moving a little faster now "Aye, I figured as much." Stopping to aim at the Klingon before Gaagii took him down. "Your pretty good wit dat thin'"

"Yes ma'am it is the weapon of my people. You can say using it runs in my DNA. As much as I enjoy leaving a path of mutilated Klingons, we really should be moving." Gaagii said with a smile.

They ran. There wasn't time for much else. Neil had quickly programmed Follow Me's and way points into everyone's HUD and he had moved to the drag position, making sure Brown and her bestie Xoica didn't deviate and that no one got left behind.

Even the bull.

The pet bovine clattered happily in his owners wake, even prancing at the beginning. Playing with the herd he found himself in. Neil paused in the cargo bay that his Marines had had a fire fight in.

He could feel the weight of that in the air. Even with scrubbers and air filtration, he could smell the ozone and superheated flesh. Neil didn't pause long, moving around the smashed and smoldering crates. His HUD flickered and a holo popped up in his HUD showing the Hawkeye moving in on an assault approach of the hanger bay, flaring as it dropped into the bay.

They hadn't planned on exfiltrating this way, but plans never survived contact with the enemy whole.


As she flared and twisted, the Hawkeye's ramp dropped and a forcefield snapped into place creating a tunnel to the bases airlock. The airlock's controls kicked in as Gunnery Sgt. Wilson overroad the system and linked it to the Hawkeye's controls. He saw Marines begin to board and he checked his chrono. By Kunadt's reckoning, this was going to be tight.

As if to emphasize that point, another mini holo popped up showing a laser transmittal from the HALO showing the bird of prey slowly rising through the atmosphere. Sensors highlighted the starboard wing, showing it locked into a landing configuration. She was struggling like a stunned duck to gain altitude.

Moving into the bay he motioned the last marines to go and he paused. There was always a chance something or someone stupid would pop up. Nothing happened, and he began moving into the force field when the holo of the bird of prey shimmered and the wing began to move. Immediately the ship began moving and Neil knew they were out of time.

He began sprinting into the hanger and could hear the forcefield snapping as it strained to keep cohesiveness. The Hawkeye was shifting into a launch configuration, moving to a hover.

From the pilot's seat Shayla shouted over the din of noise. "Move it Marines... Get your frakkin a@#es in gear or you are staying here." It was then that she noticed Xoica and a bull board the Hawkeye. "Sweet mother of... Where the hell am I stowing that?"

"Do you really have time to care?" Makeba snapped back as she made sure Xoica was strapped in and then secured herself.

Ten meters from the ramp, his well shredded suit failed. Acid began peeling away layers of the armor he wore and he felt burning on his neck where the layers had been thinnest. He hurled himself into the ramp rolling, slapping the auto-close and shouted, "Launch."

Then he was promptly stepped on and then had 125 kilos of bawling bovine sit on him, pinning him to the now closed ramp as Kunadt took the Hawkeye vertical in a not-so-subtle elevator launch through the atmosphere. As the bull thrashed and did it's best to test the integrity of his chest and then groin armor, Neil began swearing in Klingon.

His HUD showed a spark drop from the bird of prey and he could see the torpedo flash past the Hawkeye. What he couldn't see was the base explode just prior to the torpedo hitting.

But he could feel it. The shock wave caught up to them and the increased G forces from the blast pushed them just out of a blast from the bird's disruptors. Neil's chest armor cracked then as the bull's weight increased in proportion and then Kunadt was juking the shuttle and then they were in warp.

The internal dampeners and compensator reset and the bull promptly stepped on his groin guard once more as it scrambled to it's hooves and clattered over to Xoica who made cooing noises and asked, "He didn't hurt you, did he?"

Neil made the command position at that point to just lay there. It was going to be a long ride back to the Pioneer.

A Joint Post By:

Second Lieutenant Cornelius Tremble
Marine Commanding Officer, USS Pioneer

Warrant Officer Jennifer Masters
Chief Intelligence Officer, USS Pioneer

Gunnery Sergeant Wilhelmina Wilson
First Sergeant/Rifle Fire Team 2 Leader, USS Pioneer

Lance Corporal Shayla Kunadt
EVAC Specialist/Pilot, USS Pioneer

Sergeant Gaagii
RECONN Fire Team Leader, USS Pioneer

Makeba Brown
Maquis Tactical Officer

Intelligence Asset/Weapon merchant

Corporal Azure Thompson
Corpsman Command Fire Team, USS Pioneer


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