A Matter Of Time

USS Swiftsure

 

PART 1 - THE EMPRESS OF DAWN

Commodore Matthew Wayne has been reassigned while Commander Paula Chapman, his XO is promoted to Captain and put in command of the USS Swiftsure. With the war against the Vanderians past the opening shots, most ships are detached to the front, leaving but a few to cover the sector.

On such a routine patrol, the SWIFTSURE answers a call for assistance from the SS EMPRESS OF DAWN, a space cruise liner leaving the system with a civilian lot determined to flee the war menace. Following a ship systems failure, life support is no longer sufficient to sustain all 1000 sentients aboard, 80% humanoids, 20% others.

SS Empress of Dawn

XO Lt Moira O'Bannon leads a team aboard and receives a power discharge from malfunctioning equipment. She is immediately brought back to Sickbay and put in stasis. Later on, the USS Genesee departs to take her back to Starbase 285 where she will receive full medical care and be brought back to health. The SWIFTSURE hosts the 20% non humanoids to relieve the ship's environmental systems while the Engineering and Operations departments work at repairing the failed systems. CSO Lt Durek, just promoted to the status of Second Officer, finds himself stepping up as acting XO.

During patrols aboard the Empress to ensure continued peace among frazzled civilians, Security gets strange readings from some passenger quarters. Eventually two humanoids are found to be held there in a state of slavery. They can't speak Standard, understand very little of what is going on around them, displaying a meager grasp of basic technology. They have in fact no understanding of their basic civic rights, and to be of unknown origins. Security puts their owners in custody and reports to SB 285 on their findings before leaving with the two humanoids aboard. COS Daniel Nelson soon leaves the ship to be replaced by Lt Steve Brown.

 

PART 2 - ON THE WAY TO LYROS

Pending more information, D'kan and Lurd'q are left in the care of the Medical and Science departments for identification and assessment of the possibility to reintegrate them in their civilization. They call themselves Mandians and appear to have been recently abducted from a pre-warp world. Both are convinced that they are experiencing a "Taransee", a dreamlike initiation provided by the Ancestors.

After several days, the Science department digs up old reports and a likely match. Although the existence of the Mandians was known, the Dominion War brought a large delay into scheduled Science missions. The presence of humanoid sentients on Lyros IV was detected but never investigated. The SWIFTSURE is sent to the Lyros system in order to survey the planet and assess the damage caused by slave traders.

During the journey to the Lyros system, the crew celebrates various "end of the year" customs and festivities.

The MED/SCI departments make observations on the twoMandians and turns up some inconsistencies. The species appears to be a mix of space faring species (for those known), some now part of the Federation, but transformed by 2000 years of adaptation to a world they didn't originate from. Their language bears markings that are close to Standard.

 

PART 3 - LYROS

Following these startling discoveries, the SWIFTSURE sends three Away Teams upon arrival at Lyros IV. AT1 will study the Mandian civilization under command of acting XO Lt Durek. AT2 is under command of MCapt Moss and will collect information on a source of a radiation on the planet. AT3 is headed Lt Cdr Spencer with orders to tour the solar system for any clues of past or present activity.

AT1 in disguise makes contact with a Mandian village and comes up with intriguing facts - such as remains of 2 000 year old buildings that could only be built by a much more advanced technology. AT2 sweeps the general area for traces of slave traders and goes on recon up a mountain for the source of radiations affecting the Mandian villages. Meanwhile, AT3 discovers an artifact in orbit around the sun. It looks like a ring about 100m in diameter and is made of completely unknown alloy. Its function and origin are a mystery.

More surprises await the SWIFTSURE crew. AT2's forrays inside a mountain reveals the remains of a small starship sealed inside whose decaying components started affecting the local ecosystemand the planet. The next morning, Chapman beams down with a small contingent sent to dig up the ship and clean up the radiation. In the cabin, she finds the last of a decayed piece of crystal that turns out to have been a sentient being called "Pilot". In a telepathic flash, she is transmitted its memories of the last few hours before the ship was sealed in, after which the crystal becomes black and inert. AT2 proceed to "clean up" the derelict as much as they can, as it is impossible to destroy the starship without alerting t he Mandians.

Mysterious Ring

The Mandians are now convinced that the "visitors from another land" are those that the Ancestors had announced. AT1 is shown into a hidden "temple" protected by a ring very similar to the one in orbit, simply smaller. As the ring is deactivated, revealing a bio-crystal in pristine condition protected so far by a temporal shield, one of the AT scans it. At that point, the ring in orbit of the sun activates and generates a spacetime anomaly that is fast destabilizing the star.

The Swiftsure endeavours to evacuate the 3000 Mandians before the deadline and moves to leave the system in all haste, only to find that the mysterious ring is either following or preceding the ship no matter what they try. It also turns out that one of the Mandian Elders brought aboard the remaining crystal, now telepathically linked to a Betazoid crewmember who brought it on the Bridge. As the ship makes a last attempt to escape, the star explodes and the ring creates a spacetime rift that engulfs the ship.

 

CONCLUSION - WHAT TIME IS IT PLEASE?

The Swiftsure finds herself reaping into a meta-continuum and surrounded by a whole fleet of ships stranded there. The meta-continuum is destabilized by the spacetime rift and the Mandians now united in a telepathic trance further contribute to bring the frozen fleet back to life. The Fleet beams them over and moves out. Chapman enters in telepathic communication with the bio-crystal and learns about the time war wedged by the Faregs against the future incarnation of the Federation, called the Union. Far into the future, the last free Time Ship, the UTS Swiftsure-Dorgon avoided the Fareg timetrap and sought refuge in the past where it engineered the rescue of the last Union Time Fleet. From the crash on Lyros IV where the crew would build the starting block of the Mandian civilization - their descendants - and the solar ring, to the arrival of the Swiftsure 2 000 years later, everything had been master minded by the original Pilot that Chapman found before it died.

As the rift begins to close, the SWIFTSURE is caught into the displacement waves, jumping repeatedly through slices of the multiverse history. In a last ditch effort, the Crystal Pilot links to Chapman's mind. Together, they fly the ship through the multiverse and to safety before the pilot dies. The SWIFTSURE find herself back in normal space and their own universe, in close proximity of Earth. They discover the ship was reported missing with all hands three years ago.

The year is now 2383. After a thorough debriefing including Temporal Investigations, the crew is set free. The ship undergoes an overhaul and refit while the crew shoreleaves in the Sol system.

 

- Sim News -

Back to Main
This mission took place from November 2006 to mid February 2007. It was the first entirely conceived and led by Capt. Chapman.
Due to health problems, the newly appointed XO, and long-time Swiftsure player Moira O'Bannon had to leave. We wish her the best on the road to recovery!
Lt Durek, CSO, got a field promotion to Lt Cdr and an appointment to XO. Lt Cdr Spencer was appointed Second Officer.
In November 2006, the USS Swiftsure became a part of Sixth Fleet RPG.
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