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Home Invasion

Posted on Mon Jan 27th, 2020 @ 11:38pm by Commodore Tyler Malbrooke & James Leyton & Makeba Brown & Captain Jelane 'Firefly' Shiqwue & Lieutenant Elen Diari & Major Cornelius Tremble & Lieutenant Commander Larim Myles & Lieutenant JG Mira Jayna & Brigadier General Francis 'Judge' Sobel
Edited on on Wed Apr 20th, 2022 @ 4:27am

4,265 words; about a 21 minute read

Mission: Episode 9 - Empok's End
Location: Bridge - Deck 1 - USS Pioneer
Timeline: MD003 1100 hrs

The USS Pioneer had been at warp nine for fifty hours non stop. Tyler sat in the center chair with a stoic look on his face. Nothing short of divine intervention would stop him or his ship from reaching Empok Nor. The star field whizzed by on the viewscreen and it seemed that his crew was manning their posts with an equal amount of stoicism. He noticed that Dr Ballston had arrived on the bridge and was standing near one of the auxiliary stations. In truth Tyler worried about his crew, worried that he asked too much of them however, desperate times did call for desperate measures. He leaned over to speak confidentially with his First Officer. "Number One, any speculation on what could be going on back home? It is not like Hood to not respond or not have a back up plan."

"Two thoughts that come to mind, something wrong with their communications array, or they are jammed sir." Quinn said, trying to show a level of calmness. He had a feeling it was not communications issues. He had a feeling they were being jammed. But he was not sure why.

"It is what I feared as well Quinn. The station, our home is under attack. And if it is from who I think it may be then I am afraid for us all. However, before I speculate I would here which you think it may be." In the time that Quinn had served as XO Tyler had come to know his facial expressions. In this case Tyler could see that his friend was keeping his thoughts quiet.

"I only have my suspicion, Captain. I prefer not to speculate. Based on the circumstantial evidence, it appears they are being jammed. But its hard to confirm that, from this position." Quinn said, trying to demostrate to Tyler his suspicion, but in a productive manner.

Tyler decided that a round robin check in would be appropriate here. "All stations report..." He ordered, Tyler had to make sure that the ship was ready for anything. No one knew or could know what was going on at Empok Nor.

Elen was relaxed for a change "Everything's fine Captain, just topping off the coolant, so should be able to punch another point nine onto Warp in about ten minutes, she's running hot, but loving it." she called over the comms, looking at the numbers flicker on the display in front of her.

“Sciences reporting sir. No readings from the astrometrics relay at Empok Nor which suggests some sort of jamming or dampening field in place surrounding the station. Communications will be intermittent at best until we are closer.” Vaebn glanced to the next screen, “Long range sensors are still cycling what information we are receiving. I will attempt to narrow our field and get you more information sir.”

Vaebn turned to the larger console on the wall to his left and began to tap out a series of commands to the astrometric and long range sensor systems. “Computer, refit sensor whiskers for deployment with point defense systems activated and deploy at cruising speed. Mr. Myles, I’m routing whisker control to your station for point defense of the ship, and they should deploy when we drop out of warp.”

"All stations report ready for battle, Captain." Larim said, looking forward toward the view screen, and then to his CO. "Ships ready, sir." Lax, be ok

As the Captain cycled through his officer's, Neil met Tyler's eyes and said, "The Cures' ready, Captain. All Marines are on five minute standby to get into their armor." He gestured at the body-glove he wore and continued, "Just point us at something."

Ameri was concentrating on her station. She almost told Captain Malbrooke to be quiet, because some of what she was picking up was hard to hear. She listened some more and then looked over at Quinn and then to Tyler. "I am picking up parts of messages." Ameri spoke up, urgency in her voice as well as concern but she maintained a sense of professionalism. "The fighting is fierce...they need assistance!" She listened some more. "Their attackers are too numerous to continue without some help." Ameri looked around at the others. "They have injured and..." she didn't want to say it but she needed to. "And numerous loss. The words Cardassian and Maquis were mentioned but I couldn't pick it all up I will keep trying."

"Increase speed to warp 9.9, fly the ship apart if you have to." Tyler issued the only order he could think of after a report like the one he just heard Ameri give.

Ingrid raised both brows at the order as her painted nails danced over the helm. She filed a quick request to Engineering for increased power allecation to the warp engines. After a few seconds, she keyed the ship up to the requested speed.

"Now reading 9.9, Captain." she said after several seconds. "But we're still very much together. You're welcome, by the way."

“Captain, I’m receiving sensor telemetry. Empok Nor appears to be intact; however, sensor indicate residual traces of Cardassian and Federation type weapons fire, as well as several fields of debris and wreckage. I can also confirm multiple energy signatures of various starships in the immediate and surrounding vicinity to the station.” Vaebn tapped a few icons on the panel and a magnified image of the station came up on the main viewer. “From what I can tell, there are at least 18 Cardassian battlecruisers; Galor and Kheldon class; a number of Groumall class heavy transports, multiple wings of small attack craft with both Federation and Cardassian energy signatures, and two Breen Chel Grett class warships in high anchor around the station.” Color coded indicators appeared on the monitor to highlight each ship as he spoke.

"Lieutenant Commander Richard Ballston," the Azzian began. His us uniform was crisp and neat though his utility belt was far more heavily laden than normal. He could only tell that something was drastically wrong and the worry showed in the man's face, "Chief Medical Officer, "medical staff on standby, sickbay ready to take casualties, Captain."

His reply was quick and to the point. The professionalism really, he had been asked to report and he did.

"I believe that is all decks, Captain." Quinn said, as he heard the department heads going around the horn. Giving their current status updates to Tyler. Quinn was just as concerned Tyler was, with the safety of the crew on Empok Nor. He knew a few officers, over there where close to the Captain and senior staff. One that came to mind was Elloma Essu.

“Captain, based on the movement patterns, the lead ships appear to be forming a defensive net around the Mandeville point to the system." Vaebn paused for a moment and considered what he was seeing.
He looked up at the Captain from his terminal with a dead look in his eyes, “They know we’re coming.”

The idea that they knew the Pioneer was on the way did not sit well with the Captain. Tyler pondered what that meant, and it all came together for him in that moment. He thought back to the battle over Cardassia Prime and he knew. "Quinn work with Elen, I want the shields re-modulating automatically. I believe Empok Nor has a spy on board and they have our shield modulation. I do not want a replay of Cardassia."

"Aye Captain." Quinn said, as he walked over to the engineering secondary station, behind the command chairs. He started to bring up the shield harmonic frequencies up. "I am going to rotate the frequencies manually and randomly." Quinn suggested, as started to work on the first random sequence. He did not look over to Elena or Tyler. He needed to focus on the shields.

"Ill monitor here from tactical too. An extra pair of eyes never hurts." Larim said. "I'll try to defend us as best I can, but we are outgunned Captain." he said. He fully realized what he was saying too.

Tyler felt the ship slow, and he heard the warp nacelles drop from their warp positions. As if in slow motion he could feel the ship slide and sway in evasive maneuvers. He knew what was happening without paying any attention to Ingrid's report that they were in the Trivas System and that Empok Nor had opened fire upon them without warning or provocation.

Larims face flashed a look of surprise as phaser fire erupted from the station itself. He braced himself as the Pioneer rocked as the beams impact their shields. "Shields down to 80 percent Captain. Permission to return fire?"

Well that was a sure surprise Tyler thought as the deck plating of the Bridge rocked under his feet. "Continue evasive, standby on weapons but hold your fire. We have to know who or what we are shooting at." The image on the viewscreen was a grim one. Empok Nor was surrounded by Cardassian warships, and beyond that Maquis Raiders moved in and out of the battle group, as they ducked and weaved. The image caused Tyler to stand and stare with awe. The sight of those two groups working together was too much to take in.

"The rotation modulation is working Captain, however the constant bombardment of weapons fire, will not hold for long. Even with the Rotation, I strongly suggest, what ever plan your devising sir. Be completed soon." Quinn pointed out. Rotating the shields bought them time, but it did not stop the weapons bombardment on the shields. They were still being taxed by weapons fire.

"Agreed Number One, just keep the Pioneer protected for a little while longer engage the armor if you have to. We need to see what we are up against, and find out what happened here." Still standing he looked at the ship's status readout next to the command chair. A few quick commands later he saw the sensor readouts, and although he would not confess it he could not make heads or tails of what his Romulan friend did to the sensors. "Vaebn any friends out there?"

“Difficult to say. I’m reading multiple large debris fields in the space surrounding the station and identifying smaller vessels may take some time. Beginning sensor whisker deployment; that should extend our sensor accuracy through the debris. I’ve also got 4 inbound Starfleet signature warp field traces, however they appear to have faded significantly. I would surmise that these belonged to most of the debris fields we are seeing ahead.” Vaebn replied, “Whiskers have deployed and are now at operational vectors. Engaging point defense protocols and echoing sensor sweep through the whiskers. Commander Myles, the whiskers should automatically target any small craft and projectiles now, so you should be free to look for bigger fish now.”

The forward screen received a flash of information as the whiskers began relaying targeting information through the sensor grid as the integrated pulse phasers began to stitch through the void surround the ship, attacking anything that registered as potentially hostile. Vaebn quickly relayed the transponders of the escaping civilian convoy into the defensive grid to avoid any unpleasant accidents, and began a secondary scan of the debris fields. “Sir, the primary debris fields to the fore and starboard are registering as Starfleet NCC-80109 USS Callisto, Luna-class reconnaissance vessel, and NCC-76105 USS Culloden, Insignia-class heavy cruiser.’ Vaebn shifted to the next monitor and extended his net to the next debris fields and let out a barely audible sigh and his shoulder dropped slightly. “The other debris fields are also Starfleet Sir; NCC-76162 USS Gallipoli, Insignia-class heavy cruiser, and NCC-97518 USS Valley Forge, Odyssey-class Dreadnought. No life-pods detected through any of the debris fields.”

Vaebn glanced back down at the scanner results. "Further scans reveal the warp trails of two Insignia Class Starships, an Odyssey Class, and a Titan Class starship are visible but fading fast fast. It seems that they left the area at high warp."

Richard did his best to hide his anxiety but his pale eyes would easily give it away if anyone was looking. He swallowed hard and set his face like flint. For the moment he held his ground his posture indicated he was about ready to leave.

Tyler felt for what the Doc must have been feeling. His family was on that station, and Tyler vowed to make sure that Richard saw them again.

Vaebn’s eyes scanned the screens as data filtered through and began to paint a picture outside the ship. “There appears to be a number of civilian transports, freighters and Starfleet runabouts on a departure vector from the station, and they are being harried by two squadrons of Maquis Raiders. Sensors are picking up two Starfleet Peregrine class fighter signals flying CAP for the escaping vessels… transponders showing Firefly and The Judge engaged in defensive maneuvers around the convoy.” Vaebn displayed the surrounding area on the main viewscreen for the bridge crew, “Escaping convoy is here,” a reticle appeared around the small ships, with four smaller ones in motion, “and these are the fighter groups. I’m also tracking 6 more Raiders flying defensive patterns at the outer range of the station. Most of the capital ships are docked at the station upper and lower pylons and a few on the rings, and the Breen vessels are still in high anchor behind the station from our present course.”

Even the normally composed Doctor Ballston found his mind yelling, out his anger at the arrogant Cardassian. His mouth didn't move but any telepath could hear in say, then so be it, in regards to the comment about an act of war.

“We are being hailed by the station, Captain,” Ameri called out. “By those who attacked the base, they are demanding to speak to you, their words were ‘Or else’.” She was worried and angry at the same time.

"Onscreen..." Tyler said as his head darted from Ameri and back to the viewscreen. It was an order he had given countless times before, one that resulted in visual communication. However, nothing could have prepared him for what he was looking at. The image of Gul Typhon Prenar and James Leyton as they stood in Ops of the Empok Nor. Tyler knew the men only from images alone. The two stood there smiling beaming with their victory.

It was Prenar that spoke first. "Captain, my dear Captain. You are one step behind the Order as always. That was a warning shot. The next one will not miss. I suggest you depart this sovereign Cardassian system immediately. To not do so will be considered and act of war."

The Cardassian was smug, even more so than most of his species. Tyler was about to verbally fire back when the wind was taken out of his sails by Leyton. "Captain I speak to you now as someone who served the same banner that you do. I was there when the keel for your ship was laid. Please keep in mind that I will use that intimate knowledge of your vessel to further our ends. I suggest you listen to Gul Prenar and vacate the system at once."

Tyler could not believe it, Empok Nor was lost. He knew Leyton's record, some of his missions were required study for Operations officers at the Academy. That is before Leyton betrayed everyone and tried to start a war. It did not take a tactical genius to know that there was no way for the Pioneer to get the station back. Tyler ran his hand through his hair. "Gentlemen can you give me ten minutes without firing to search for any survivors. Please..."

Prenar was poised to reject the Captain's plea, however Leyton cut him short. "You have your ten minutes Malbrooke. But no more. Empok Nor out!"

Larim forgot himself for a minute. "Ok. Ten minutes to get our people out then I'll put a quantum torpedo to his smug face."

Neil stared at the screen after turning from the Marines ops panel and stated. "Get me aboard and give The Cure five minutes and I'll wipe that smug look off the bastards face.

Ameri felt things deeply but now was not the time. She took a deep breath and spoke. “There is a lot of distress calls coming in, from some who evacuated and didn’t make it very far, we need to start picking them up while we can. One person is too many.” She took a deep breath. “Then we need to make a plan to come back and kick their asses out of here!” She was angry and upset, a toss between crying and like the others wanting to make them pay right now but they were outgunned.

"We have wounded to tend too, and several starfleet officers that are now displaced. We need to evacuate them all from this area, we can worry about retaliation another time." Quinn pointed out, trying to be the voice of reason. He wanted to teach that smug cardassian a lesson. But it would have to wait.

Tyler actually managed a smile, he agreed with his entire crew. "Commander you are too right, please coordinate the remainder of that evacuation. Lieut..." Tyler turned to address his science officer and almost forgot that the man bore an extra pip these days. "Commander tr'Hwersuil transmit the coordinates of those Fighters to the helm, Ingrid set an intercept course as soon as you can. I want those fighters on screen as soon as we are in range."

Malbrooke had one more trick up his sleeve before he gave up, and he knew just who could make it happen. He tapped his comm badge. "Warrant Mira and Ms Brown please report to the Ready Room." He turned to Quinn, "Join us in the Ready Room when they arrive Commander."

The call to the Ready Room came as a surprise for Makeba. Something must really be up and if what she read in SCIF was any indication she had an idea what that was. The time had come to decide her allegiance. She acknowledged the call and made her way to the Ready Room.

"On my way." Jayna wasn't sure what the captain had in mind, but she was eager to do something. In a moment, she was on her way.

Quinn watched both ladies walk onto the bridge. He motioned with his hands for them to follow. Quinn wondered deep down, if Makeba was responsible, for the attack. He quickly shook off the feeling, and said to himself. She had changed, she deserves your trust and the benefit of the doubt.

Within minutes the short meeting was over and everyone was back on the bridge. "You three have your orders..." Tyler spoke as he made his way to the command chair it was then that he realized the viewscreen showed the faces of Brigadier General Sobel and Captain Jelane. He smiled briefly, "Well I am glad to see you two I should have known The Judge and Firefly."

The two Marine Peregrin’s flashed through explosions as they strafed another Cardassian ship, trying to stay close to the capital ship and avoid most of it’s return fire. But as Federation assets were destroyed or forced to leave the area, it was only a matter of time.

His proximity alarm went off and he spared a glance, rolling his ship and the HUD flashed once, golden and he sighed. The IFF had picked up a friendly warping into the area: It was the Pioneer.

As the fighters flashed away from the injured ship, which reined fire at them, Sobel directed them toward the Pioneer. They’d done all they could.

"Well I am glad to see you two I should have known The Judge and Firefly.” Tyler said as the Comm’s linked.

“Roger that, Pioneer. Glad to you see you all but don’t get comfy,” as he and Firefly juked their ships to avoid more incoming fire and Sobel’s Peregrin took another glancing hit, he activated a widespread com channel.

“All Federation forces, this is General Sobel. Authorization Code Two, Zero, Five, Alpha, Alpha One. Bug Out. I say again, Bug Out to coded rally points. We’re done here.”

He scowled as he and Firefly pushed the fighters to their operational limits as they circled wider and wider away from the station, waiting for all Federation ships to warp out.

Like a series of strobe lights the images of various Federation ships making the warp jump darted across the screen. Tyler's jaw fell slack, he wanted to tell the General no, to tell him that they would not abandon home on anyone's orders. But Tyler Malbrooke had his ship to think of, his crew, his friends, his wife, his FAMILY. Sobel had the right of it.

Jelane's Peregrin banked and rolled as she avoided a volley from the Cardassian vessel. A smile on her blood red lips and a slight cackle as she returned fire. "Take that you motherless bastards..." It was almost like she forgot her comm channel was open with the Pioneer. The sound of Sobel's orders brought her from her bloodlust. "My apologies sirs."

"You heard the Judge court is adjourned. The Jury is dismissed and we thank you for your service. Bug out to rally points." Firefly watched as all but one of her fighters pulled out of the fray and warped out of the area. "Dammit Highball pull out now..."

A male voice chimed in on the comm. "Nothing but the rain out here Firefly. I am having way too much fun..."

"Negative Highball the storm is over and court is adjourned. Fall back..." Jelane spoke forcefully into her mic as keyed in an override for Highball she would force him back if he would not go willingly. However, she was elated when within moments his fighter made the warp jump. "Judge this is Firefly the Jury has retired. I shall cover your jump." She maneuvered her fighter to cover the senior officer's retreat."

Francis nearly argued with her, then sighed and activated his Warp Engine. "Rorger that, Firefly. No lolly gagging on your part either, Captain." His nav computer guided him to the coordinates for the first micro-hop that would clear him of the theater and rolled his craft one more time to look at the station.

They'd be back.

Jelane watched as The Judge made his exit. Her HUD showed that the only Starfleet assets left were herself and the Pioneer. "Pioneer this is Firefly I am transmitting the rally coordinates on coded frequency. I suggest you bug out. Firefly out." The channel closed and she banked her fighter a short burst of light and energy and she was gone.

Tyler stood stunned on the Bridge as silence fell. His thoughts were dark and lingered on who would pay for the lives, for what happened here. "Lieutenant Hollister lay in a course for the rally point maximum warp."

Ameri received the coded message and passed it on. Her emotions were all over the place, shock, anger, sadness. This could and would not end here. She knew Quinn and the captain would not rest until they had made those responsible pay for what had happend as well as get Empok Nor back. Ameri wasn't going to either.

Neil scowled at the screen until Pioneer jumped, then he turned back to the panel he'd been monitoring and began cycling through updated after action captures of the battle ground. Pioneer would be going back and The Cure would likely be at the tip of that spear.

A Joint Post By

Captain Tyler Malbrooke
Commanding Officer, USS Pioneer

Commander Quinn Ó Flannagáin
Executive Officer, USS Pioneer

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

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

Lieutenant Commander Richard Ballston M.D. PsyD
Chief Medical Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Commander Vaebn tr'Hwersuil
Chief Science Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Ameri Ó Flannagáin
Chief Operations Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Elen Diari
Chief Engineering Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Ingrid Hollister
Chief Flight Control Officer, USS Pioneer

Warrant Officer Mira Jayna
Infiltration Specialist, USS Pioneer

Makeba Brown
Maquis Tactical Officer

Brigadier General Francis Sobel
Commanding Officer, 258th Starfleet Marine Expeditionary Brigade
Empok Nor

Captain Jelane 'Firefly' Shiqwue
Commander Air Group, 2738th Marine Fighter Squadron
Empok Nor

James Leyton
Commanding Officer, New Maquis

Gul Typhon Prenar
Commanding Officer, Obsidian Order


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