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It's Stellar!

Posted on 14 Jun 2017 @ 5:36am by Lieutenant JG Jace Crystan & Ensign Kelly Khan

Mission: The Finnean Crisis
Location: Stellar Cartography
Timeline: MD 5 || 0700 Hours

Kelly was just getting off duty when a beep at the terminal demanded her attention. For a second, she debated not answering it, but the weight of HG on her collar reminded her of her duty and she reluctantly pulled it up. It was a message from Lieutenant Langston asking her to get with Stellar Cartography to map out navigation for the area in which they were going.

"Why," she groaned as she pushed a lock of brunette hair out of her hazel eyes. "Couldn't he have contacted me when my shift first started?" she groaned. Still, she was an officer and it was a request from her department head and she couldn't ignore it or put it off. She grabbed a fresh PADD, straightened her rumpled uniform and headed out to Science.

There, Kelly checked her uniform again before she entered and went to find someone in Stellar Cartography who could help her with the data that she needed to get.

Jace had been in the office early today. He wanted to get a head start on the work, though to be fair, he'd been getting that head start for the last few days. Playing catch up had him in prime form though, especially for the day today, which he'd need all the help he could get. Now, he was standing in the middle of the platform, viewing an image of the Convergence. At this point, he was just staring at it, soaking it in. When they got there, he'd likely do it again, this time to the real thing, in hopes that it give him inspiration.

Hearing the door slide open, Jace came back to reality and looked to see who had entered. Recognizing the new arrival to be Ensign Khan, whom he'd met a few days before, he closed out the image, returning the screen to its normal view and walked over.

"Good morning, " he said cheerfully.

"Too cheerful," Kelly muttered before she remembered she was in the presence of a senior officer. "Sir," she added. "I need to get navigational data for the area we're heading into for Flight Control," Kelly requested. "I was told to work with Stellar Cartography to assess the likely dangers in the area and to find alternate routes if needed."

Jace smiled and motioned for her to join him at the main console, with which he was controlling the main display. He tapped a few inputs and looked up to view a general map of the area in question. A standard grid pattern outlined the display. "Alright. Where would you like to start?"

"With a large Raktajino chocolate bar," she said before she realized she wasn't at the mess hall ordering breakfast. "Uh, the Idran Region?"

"Ok," he said bringing up the display. He initiated a scan of the region, planning to get the most up to date information on it. As it scanned, Jace ran a search for the older information they had on the region. "I'm going to need the Bajoran Wormhole to settle down so I can see other things." He hoped his little quip would go over well. As the results started to pour in, he looked over them. "well, We have a class six nebula here," he highlighted the display, "and a level two ion storm coming in from here." Again, he highlighted the area. "All in all, not that bad."

"I'm going to have a boring Delta shift tonight in that case," Kelly said before she stifled a yawn. "I flew through far worse than that on the old Black Hawk." She sighed and unconsciously rubbed her pip which looked like it had been worn longer than she was in Starfleet. "I also went through worse simulations at the Academy and in Nova Squad. What else do we have out here? Any gases, how many particles per million of space dust, unusual elements?"

Jace chuckled, amused at the generalized reminiscing of his colleague. The console beeped recognition of a new scan. He glanced down at the console, accessing the information and putting it on the main viewer. "Ask and ye shall receive. We have a gas cloud on the projected course. Let's see if we can glean a little more info on it." His sentence slowed as he tapped the keys. "Metreon gas. Yikes. Let's stay away from that."

"Metreon gas, huh?" Kelly mused as she thought for a moment. "Oh yeah. That stuff is highly explosive, but useful in a pinch. That's what was used in the Riker Maneuver. We studied that at the Academy. One day, I'm going to have a maneuver named after me."

"The Khan maneuver, huh?" Jace mused. "If it packs a punch, I'm putting dibs on Kelly's Fist." The console began to recognize a growing number of disturbances, including a series of nebulas, a field filled with subspace eddy currents, and a number of planetary bodies. "Too bad we don't have time to explore some of this right now. Looks like there might be some habitable planets to go visit."

She held up a small fist and looked at it. "Hmm...that does have a ring to it, but would it really pack a punch?" She looked over at the readings. "They're all in an area marked for the Dosi, Rakhari and Selubassari, too. We don't want to go into that area until things settle down from what I'm hearing according to the scuttlebutt. As long as we don't, we should be golden."

"Routing around that, then," Jace said, still amused. They scanned through the next several segments and found similar phenomena, as well as making routes around their current set of unfriendlies. "This whole situation is awfully mysterious, wouldn't you say?"

"That's why we're out here, isn't it?" Kelly asked him. "To explore the unknown, to solve the mysteries of the universe, and to go where no one else has. The Gamma Quadrant is our frontier and it's up to us to map it."

"I suppose so," he responded, nodding. It wasn't necessarily what he was asking, but all the same, it wasn't a bad answer either. The small talk was already shifting a little too far to the serious sounding side. In silence, he continued to analyze the scans, making notes of the now ever growing list of obstructions to their direct path.

She looked over at the readings and pointed at one. "We're going to need to avoid that area," she said. "It looks like it has the earmarks of a subspace eddy. I don't want to go through another one of those ever again." She paused and looked over at him.

"Did you know that the original Black Hawk is the very first ship I ever served on?" Kelly asked him. "My senior cruise and I got more experience from it than some officers see in years in space."

"I believe it. I've long believed that some ships are lucky like that. Call it superstition, but there are some that just have it going for them. To be on a ship such as that is a dream come true." He spoke from the heart on that one. "My previous assignments had their ups for sure, but there was a lot of down time, for sure. What made your experience special?" he asked.

"Lucky?" Kelly stared at him in disbelief. "You didn't read the mission logs, did you?" she asked. "It would have been smoother to take a trip through Gre'thor. We had to fight fellow Starfleet officers who were influenced by the Consortium, got blown through another universe and everything else. I ended up in command of the USS Chimera after having to land on it while it was spinning around of control at impulse. Then I had to assist the Black Hawk and the Cochrane take out a Valdore class Romulan warbird. That's when we got blown through to the other universe and ended up with a price on the Captain's head. We got back here and made a run for Deep Space Eleven where we had to fight even more before the Black Hawk went down and we had to abandon ship."

"Obviously a poor choice of words," he said, noting the expression on her face. "Perhaps I should have said what I really strive for is the opportunity to show the universe what I'm made of and have the strength and fortitude to persevere through it. Based on what you've just told me, my meager service record amounts to little more than a blip on a monitor. Forgive me if I seem naïve when I use the word lucky."

"It's all good, but I'm still a bit wound up after all that, but I did get a battlefield promotion out of it," she said. "As for meager, you're a Lieutenant JG and I'm just an Ensign, so you had to have done something right along the way. They don't give those pips away to just anyone who waltzes to the Captain and says 'hey dude, you got one of those shiny gold things I can put on my collar?'" She paused and laughed, then reached up to rub the tarnished looking pip on her collar. "Although I did get this one personally from the Captain when I got my promotion after we blew the Chimera up."

"Making strides in the field of astrophysics," he quoted. It was almost like they had to. "But I guess we each make our contributions in our own way." The console beeped indicating it had finished another segment. Jace looked at it. "What the hell is that?" On the screen, it appeared as though there was some sort of void space near a white dwarf system. "I vote we avoid that too, but no, I haven't gone through all the mission logs yet. Its top on my list though."

Kelly frowned as she looked at it. "Umm. That's an affirmative," she said. "Stellar Cartography isn't my thing, but it's useful in Navigation and staying away from that is far preferred to going near it. However, I'm sure Commander Djinx would love to have Science study it. I strongly suggest that when you do read them that you don't do it before you go to bed. I still waking up sweating and thinking we're under attack at times."

"I'll keep that in mind," he said, making the mental note to submit a report to his department head also. They continued their conversation as the analysis brought even more data into the playing field. It'd be a lot to process, certainly, but that was the job.


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