Just another normal day…
Posted on Saturday, 22 May 2021 - 5:50pm by Lieutenant Alex Kingsley & Lieutenant Scarlet Rogers
Edited on on Saturday, 22 May 2021 - 6:00pm
Operation: Neu Reich
Location: Science Labs
For a moment there was only silence and darkness. An eerie stillness settling as all power failed in the corner of the ship which housed the ship's modest science department. A few heartbeats later and emergency power came online, bathing the corridor and laboratories in the distinctive red glow. And with the emergency power came the alarms as in the middle of a few tendrils of flame took hold and soon engulfed the central workstation...
Five minutes earlier
Scarlet beckoned Alex over, "this was that new upgrade I was talking about. I've just finalised it." Scarlet smiled, "it should work much more efficiently now, it even uses less power."
Having just entered, carrying two cups of hot chocolate, Lieutenant Kingsley was far from surprised to find Lieutenant Rogers had been busy. With the ship on route to Ekos - a journey that would take considerable time - most departments were using the opportunity to continue with repairs to the ship. Normally by the time a ship left a starbase, it would once again be shiny and new and ready for whatever the galaxy threw at it. The Standing Bear however..
"In which case, Ops will say you definitely deserve this," she declared as she held up her offering. "I met Petty Officer Ilian on the way here, she was psyching herself up to go chasing down some issue with the EPS conduits. Apparently she's inherited some claustrophobia from one of her hosts and she is not happy about it."
"So, I'm not gonna run a scan on a cell sample and be told it's a unicorn, right?" Alex queried with a teasing smile as she handed Scarlet. "I know most of the crew are not scientists but they might notice the little things like that."
"Benefit of being an engineer first and foremost," Scarlet grinned taking the hotchocolate gladly. She sipped it and sighed contentedly.
"As for the unicorn thing," Scarlet replied, "you never know what we'll find. It may very well be a unicorn. After all, the national animal of Scotland was a unicorn, so they must have existed at some point. Either way, surely rhino's are just obese unicorns."
“I’ve only seen both of those in books,” Alex admitted with a rueful smile, “we weren’t big on wild animals on Mars.”
Scarlet chuckled, "well, I guess we'll see. Have you got a sample?"
Setting aside her drink, Alex nodded. “Two secs,” she promised as she disappeared out of sight and gathered a small selection of samples to test. “Okay, we’ve got cell, plant and rock samples. Let’s run them and we can compare to the original scans I did previously.”
Scarlet nodded, "so you know what they should be, this is just a check." The woman paused and looked up, "did the lights just flicker?" Scarlet looked puzzled.
“I don’t think so…” Alex said, frowning as she loaded up the first sample, a fragment of rock they had obtained while Soral had asked her to seek out fragments of Romulus. Her tone spoke of her uncertainty and as she touched the controls, the lights did indeed flicker. “Okay that was weird. Maybe we should call - ouch!” She yanked her hand away as if shocked. “What the -“
Scarlet paused. She knew what this kind of flicker meant, "Alex, step ba-"
Scarlet was interrupted by the console exploding with a loud, echoing boom as a surge of power ran around all consoles in the lab in sequence. It felt like an electircal domino effect. Both women were sent flying backwards at the electrical discharge shocking them both.
Coming to, Alex found herself on the far side of the lab, partially behind the workstation she typically used. Coughing, she gingerly began to climb to her hands and knees, her gaze sweeping the room and her heart sinking. “You have got to be kidding me!” She frowned, trying to pick out any sign of Lieutenant Rogers as the world spun. “Scarlet?! You okay?”
Scarlet's ears were ringing. She just about caught a muffled call for her though. She pushed a metal sheet from something, off of her chest and raised an arm stiffly, waving to the sound of her name. She groaned and started to pull herself to a sitting up position, "yep-- I'm good but your lab died."
Relieved to see signs of life, Alex hurried towards the other woman to help her up. The noise made it almost impossible to be heard but she pointed to the door. Without the automatic fire suppression, staying was not an option. Her lab was replaceable, people not so much.
Scarlet got to her feet, with a bit of help, though did try to support Alex since they were both a bit wobbly. "Engineering? Or who on a ship to deal with this?" Scarlet asked.
“What?” Alex realised she had to be shouting as they got to the door, saying a silent prayer of thanks when the doors opened to let them out into the corridor. As the door shut behind them the sudden silence was more disorientating than the chaos left behind them. She glanced back, running a hand through her hair as she thought of the ruin they had just left behind. She drew her hand back, seeing it slick with blood as main power came back online.
From inside the lab they heard automated warnings as the fire suppression system activated, the door to the lab locking down.
“Sickbay is right around the corner,” Alex pointed out as she pointed to Scarlet’s face, “let’s do that. Your cheek is bleeding. If anyone asks, a tribble caused this. Damn cute cuddly devils.”
Scarlet's eyes went to Alex's hand. She seemed to turn a little more pale than her usual self. She ignored Alex and asked, "Is.. uhh... Is that blood?" Scarlet pointed to Alex's hand, before suddenly feeling quite faint. Why the hell couldn't she get over this? Blood was a natural thing.
Scarlet managed to keep it together, just, she tried to focus elsewhere, "maybe they should come to us. Not us to them. Neither of us are steady. We're safe here."
Alex nodded and with one hand on the wall sank down to sit on the floor. “Yeah. Here is good,” she breathed, patting the floor beside her for Scarlet to sit down as she closed her eyes. “Stillwater is gonna be so mad….”
"Not our fault," Scarlet shook her head as she slid down next to her, "that was clearly a power surge. I'd imagine it was to critical areas, like the medbay and us. What made it worse was that we were using equipment at the time it happened. Wonder what happened to the fail safe. Normally there'd be a breaker or something."
"Yeah, like anything normal happens around here..."