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Roboship (Part II)

Posted on Fri Aug 12th, 2022 @ 6:23am by Lieutenant Remy Boudreau & Lieutenant JG Tessa Nicoles & Petty Officer 1st Class Ranonda LeBeau
Edited on on Fri Aug 12th, 2022 @ 7:17am

1,404 words; about a 7 minute read

Mission: Making for a Hostile Environment.


He checked the sensor scans once again. 'Seems one of the advantages for having a fully automated ship is you don't need atmosphere. We'd better suit up, Petty Officer.'

"Yes, sir," Ranonda replied with a brisk nod. She was both eager and trepidatious at the prospect.


Boudreau slipped the strap of a field kit across his shoulder, letting it drape across his body to leave his hands free. He picked up a field tricorder and after assessing the size of the team, reluctantly holstered a phaser too. Looking round at the rest of them and nodded. 'Ready?'

"Ready as I can be," Ranonda said, grinning. "Let's see what surprises this little can has, shall we?"

He grinned wolfishly in return, 'nothing too big I hope.' He snapped the helmet of his suit in place and fired up the internal comm system. Boudreau looked to make sure the others had theirs in place before he made for the airlock and activated the inner door before motioning them over.

Ranonda took a deep breath for courage and followed him, letting the others come behind.

Stepping through the airlock into the outer dark, Boudreau went to switch on the wrist-mounted flashlight he carried, but started when the corridor around him lit up with a harsh actinic light. The suit's smart helmet compensated after a split second, tinting the glass dark to let his eyes adjust.

Taking a couple of cautious steps into the ship, he felt rather than heard his boots clomp metallically against the grated flooring. 'Look at this,' he said across the comm, moving his tricorder around the space methodically, 'it's a very small corridor. More like a maintenance tube, really,' he said, 'bare alloy walls, grated flooring. Definitely not a ship a Federation-normative species would be building for long-term use.'

Boudreau glanced back at Ranonda, 'there must be some serious automation on this ship.' He could barely hide his glee.

"It's definitely alien," she replied, scanning the area. "I wonder if anyone is alive here?"

Nicoles took third position with her tricorder out. "Looks like a docking tube that extends, I saw one like it on a race that had only began warp travel and would extend airlock tubes from ship to ship.

The corridor extended another ten meters before widening into a hexagonal room, barren but equal distance from any two wall surfaces or the floor from the ceiling. Residue of a Methane rich environment registered on the tricorders. The energy flowing about had the levels of an operating automated factory, the door was similarly shaped and 1.8 meters. There is a red flashing light strip on the floor boarder. The door also had a red light near the door approximately where a control panel would be located.

"That looks interesting," Ranonda said, indicating the light. "I wonder what it's for?" She knew better than to just push buttons, although in this case it was tempting. She walked closer to the light and raised an eyebrow at Nicoles and Boudreau.

Something on the panel looked familiar and she pulled out her tricorder. "I'm picking up life signs."

Flicking his tricorder to the same frequency as LeBeau's and checking the signals, Boudreau nodded in consent, 'definite life signs further in to the vessel - probably methane breathers from those atmospheric readings.' He pointed in the direction of the door. 'Seems like our way through.'

Ranonda nodded. "I'll go first." As he was the scientist, she'd let him follow her in case she ran into trouble. "But if we find that something has burst out of their chests, it's everyone for themselves."

Boudreau let out a short bark of a laugh at the reference, and nodded, 'if I see burst chests, I can assure you, you won't outrun me to the shuttle.' He nodded in the direction of the door, 'go ahead and open it.'

Ranonda nodded again. She took a deep breath and opened the door. It looked like a giant storage facility--or a morgue. There were hundreds of metallic cubicles that were large enough to hold a body--or a monster. She still hadn't totally dismissed the idea of something jumping out at her. She scanned the room. "I think they're all alive. Stasis?"

Stepping through the door, Boudreau let out a whistle. He approached one of the pods as Ranonda asked her question, wiping away condensation from what appeared to be a plexiglass screen in the machine. 'Ugly fu - I mean, anatomically unique individuals,' he observed, wrinkling his nose.

Checking out a blinking control panel, Boudreau pulled out his tricorder once more, scanning the machine. 'I think you're right. They’re in a state of suspended animation.' He glanced up and around the chamber. 'I think the ship is preparing the planet for colonisation.'

Ranonda shook her head. "Yeah. I think you're right. We need to take this back to the Aurora. We can't destroy the ship, and we can't let the ship kill the colonists."

He nodded. 'You're right, Ranonda,' Boudreau sucked in a breath through his teeth as he thought. 'We should find a computer port,' he said finally. 'Maybe if we find where this ship originated, we can persuade whoever sent them to divert its course?'

"Or see if we can tell the ship directly," she said. "Would make this easier all around." She paused. "Want me to contact the ship and see if there's a planet that will work for them nearby? Just in case?"

He nodded, 'those are good options, too,' Boudreau smiled, 'we just don't know how automated this rig is. Let's find out.'

She nodded. She checked her tricorder and headed off to their next destination. "This should be the place to see who controls the computer."

Scanning the door in front of him, Boudreau clicked his tongue in satisfaction, 'looks like it's another airlock-type door.' Scanning it with his tricorder, he nodded to himself, 'atmosphere is fine the other side, starting the override cycle.'

Ranonda nodded. "I've got your back, sir." She just hoped nothing jumped out at them. She hated when that happened.

Feeling the security noncom tense up behind him, Boudreau attempted to put on an air of nonchalance as he punched in the sequence to his tricorder carefully.

The metallic door in front of them hissed, releasing jets of cold, smoky air from the seals as the wheel at the center of it began to spin, faster and faster as the door began its opening cycle.

After a minute, the door swung open with a pop and hiss as the atmospheres equalized. Stepping through the airlocks, Boudreau glanced around, the room was eerily dim, the lighting several levels lower than the other parts of the vessel they had been in.

Turning to Ranonda, Boudreau raised a hand, 'hey, seems pretty clea-!'

Smashed in the small of his back, Boudreau was slammed to the floor, facedown, smacking his head against the lip of the airlock door. Dazed, he managed to utter a stream of choice Cajun oaths as he tried to twist himself around on the floor to face his attacker as he felt scrabbling claws against the back of his suit.

"What..." Ranonda looked for the assailant. Some sort of rodent-looking creature the size of a small pit bull was trying to dig its way to Boudreau. She stunned it, then pushed it off the officer with her foot. "We need to get you out of here. Your suit's compromised." She didn't have anything in her kit for this and she wasn't sure she'd find any kind of sealant nearby.

"LeBeau to Deville," she said once she tapped her combadge. "Beam the away team back to the shuttle."

The team materialized back on the shuttle--along with the creature that attacked Remy. "Don't kill it," Ranonda shouted. "We need to take it back to the ship for study and we need it alive." She wasn't sure how much it would take to stun the creature, so she tried something safer. "Computer, place a level-one force field around the creature that beamed over with us."

With everyone back on the shuttle, they headed back to the Aurora with their information--and their visitor.


Lieutenant Remy Boudreau
Chief Science Officer

Petty Officer Ranonda LeBeau

Lieutenant JG Tessa Nicoles
Medical Officer


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