It Was Already There
[OS] A New Dawn
Location: Ourea Station; Captain's Office
Timeline: MD11 || 1315
It had only been five days since the attack on SH-22. The initial reports were pretty empty, but once the Makarov had arrived, the true extent of the damage was revealed. The USS Tampa was heavily damaged. With it being an Antares class freighter, it wasn’t able to hold up under the barrage of Vaadwaur fighters. The only real defence in the system was the Saber class Veldar and the Insignia class Hephaestus, which was fitted out as a mobile refinery and construction ship. They reacted first, and that probably saved other ships from receiving any more damage.
The Makarov arrived 12 hours later and discovered that there had been very limited casualties. No deaths, numerous injuries. The Vaadwaur had taken great care to damage the ships, but limit the loss of life. That had been surprising given the previous reports regarding the Vaadwaur. Why they attacked the area was still unknown. It had been surmised that they wanted to force Starfleet to simply withdraw from the area, but it didn’t fit that they had collapsed the only way they could withdraw.
As Captain Solin Edral sat in his office on the station going through various reports, some old Earth classical music playing in the background, he was beginning to get tired. The first few nights after the attack he hadn’t slept as much. With various defensive equipment on the station still not completed, he would have to follow up with his XO this afternoon, he hadn’t wanted to be away from either his office or Operations. Although, in fairness, he was now technically working from the Admiral’s office. Admiral Paka spent most of his time either on Makarov, or as the Starfleet facility down in the colony so the Admiral’s office had been changed to the Captain's office, and the former Captain’s office had been given to the XO. The benefit being that his current office had a very nice sofa that could fold out to a bed, keeping him as close to Operations as possible.
Another benefit was that he had the Admiral’s Yeoman, Commander Camille Hanover. She had worked for Admiral Paka for over 8 years, so he knew she was a good officer, so it was nice to have someone who could offer suggestions that the Admiral would agree with, or disagree, whatever the case may be. Not a replacement for his XO, but a welcome addition to his staff.
A chime went off on his console. It was Aisha, who appeared in front oh his desk. “Captain, I just got the latest from Admiral Paka. The door opened to his office opened, and in walked Commander Hanover.
“She beat me to it, again.” She walked into the room and sat on one of the chairs around the small table. “Go ahead, Aisha.”
“Thank you, Commander. The last casualties have left the medical facilities on the Makarov and the Avatar. All in all, one hundred and fourteen total injuries with seven fatalities. Ensign Maran succumbed to his injuries 3 hours ago. The Hephaestus wasn’t as badly damaged as they thought, and has been using its manufacturing capabilities to repair the Tampa and the Veldar.”
“Are they both fully operational now?” Captain Edral asked.
Commander Hanover stood this time. “The Veldar is running at about ninety-five percent efficiency, it’s en route back here at low warp. There are some repairs that the Hephaestus couldn’t repair with the more specialised facilities we have available here. The Tampa is still under repair, but what’s slowing it down is the fabrication process. It requires larger pieces, and the industrial replicators on Hephaestus can only handle certain sizes.”
Aisha spoke next. “The Commander is correct, estimates are the Tampa will be fully repaired within the next forty-eight hours. The damage to the facility will take a little longer. Parts of the facility are still unpressurised, but they are unused sections so the facility is still running at peak efficiency.”
Quickly going through the reports, which included some footage of the actual attack, he noticed something peculiar. “Commander, is it me or does it look like they were keeping a small contingent of their forces by the moon orbiting the planet? Almost like they wanted our focus away from it?
“It does, Captain. What else did sensors pick up from this collection of ships, Aisha?” She drew her finger around the holo-display, which drew a circle around the ships in question.
Her eyes flickered blue. “It appears they were trying to mask their sensor readings, but there appear to be a shuttle sized ship coming up from the moon, but no record of anything landing there.”
Hanover looked to the Captain. “Meaning it was already there.”
“I need the sensor readings from that moon the for entire time we have been in the system. Look for the shuttle landing.”
Her eyes flickered blue again. “Searching… No signs of any shuttles to or from the moon, however, there was a high-frequency transmission seven days ago. It was on a frequency we don’t regularly monitor.
“How big was the transmission?” Asked the Captain.
“Unknown at this time, Captain. It was a burst transmission, broken up into various separate transmissions. In total it lasted for four-point three seconds. It was registered on the Hephaestus sensors but was determined to be background noise. Going through sensors records now.”
“They were already there. Was this a rescue mission?” The Captain said out loud. Commander…”
“I’ll inform the Admiral.” She interrupted, as she nodded to the Captain, who returned the nod, and she walked toward the door. “I’ll be in my office Commander.”
“It looks like there was a similar transmission there fourteen days ago.”
“Aisha, scan the planet below. Anything in sensor logs in this system?
“Once, fourteen days ago, it only lasted for a total of one point three seconds,” Aisha replied.
“Maintain active sensors on the planet, especially around the colony. I want to know if so much as a leaf is out of place.” The Captains voice now with a hint of trepidation.
“Yes, Captain.” She dematerialised.
I’m going to need more coffee he thought to himself, taking his final sip of this cup. “What have we stumbled in to?” He asked the empty room.