Adieu - Part 2
Posted on Sun Mar 17th, 2019 @ 3:36pm by Captain Nami Ishikawa & Captain Oliver Lee PhD & Lieutenant Commander Nola Elbrun & Captain Korra Ymir & Lieutenant Commander Johannes Adlerstein & Lieutenant Commander Nealas Yvex M.D. & Captain Jackson Werner
Episode 4 - Truth, Justice, and the Federation Way
Timeline: MD 03 (March 5, 2393)
::Marine Country, USS Arcadia::
Jackson looked over the attack plan again, while his NCO's checked the readiness of the teams going on the away mission. There were three separate away teams going aboard the Themyscira. Five of his marines would go with the team whose target was the bridge. He would personally lead a team of twelve to the the brig. His mission, to secure and return both Captain Lee and Captain Ymir to the Arcadia. He would not fail in his mission. Failure was not an option.
"Sergeant Morr," Jackson called over his left shoulder as he continued to study the plans of attack.
The Bolian in question turned when he heard his name called and moved smartly to his commanding officer's side. "Yes, Sir?" He queried as he moved to stand at ease. Jackson had drilled into each of his marines that, during a mission, some regulations would be loosened some. Such as standing at rigid attention when speaking to an officer. While he certainly understood the need for the discipline that was brought about by the strict adherence to said regulations, as a seasoned field operator, he also knew that that same strict adherence could be a distraction. So long as the level of familiarity didn't go too far afield, then he had no issue with the relaxed motions.
Turning to face the senior NCO, Jackson asked, "How are we looking?"
Morr tilted his head, to look back at the assembling marines, as he replied. "Alpha team has already deployed, Bravo and Gamma teams are geared up, briefed and ready to rock on your order, Sir."
Jackson nodded approvingly. "Very good. You are to take Bravo team and link up with the bridge team. Take all your orders from their O.I.C."
Morr nodded once. "Roger that, Sir. Good luck." He then saluted quickly, before moving out, taking Bravo team with him.
Lieutenant Commander Adlerstein approached Jackson. The German had traded his red collar for Marine fatigues, and instead of his usual two and a half pips, he wore a major’s leaf upon his collar. He was already in combat gear.
“Request permission to go with you Captain Werner.”
Jackson grinned at the approach of his friend. After indicating that the two officers should step off to the side, out of earshot of the other Marines, Jackson asked, "Will you be taking over operational command of the mission, Sir, or just bringing an extra set of hands to the job?" While Jackson knew that Alderstein had every right, as a Major, to join his team, he was also aware that the German didn't have the same level of combat experience that Jackson and his Marines had. His presence would change the overall dynamic of the mission.
Hans gave Jackson a look as if he had been asked to chew on a piece of anti-matter. “I can read between the lines Jack. What you are REALLY saying is ‘Sir, are you here to tag along or take away my boys like a rude son of a bitch?’” The German smirked at his own profanity. “Let’s not be stupid Jack; I’m just here to get the Skipper back. I’m fully aware that these are your kids, and that I’m an outsider to your team. However, I’m owed some measure of payback for what they did to my crew, not to mention rescuing the Captain. So how about we call it a trade: you let me come along and I’ll not only promise not to get in the way, but I’ll even make your sure that rat nest you call a beard doesn’t get burned by an errant phaser blast.”
Adlerstein placed placed his hand upon Werner’s shoulder. “Besides, I’ve overheard your First Sergeant; he’s tired of carrying you through every mission...his back is starting to give out.”
There were few people that could get away with talking to Jackson in such a manner. Thankfully, the German was high up on that short list. Werner gave his friend a lop-sided grin as he responded. "Well, you know what they say, the NCO's are the backbone of the Corps!" He chuckled softly. "Permission granted, Sir. Under one condition." He looked over to his gathered Marines. "O'Malley, front and center!"
A young, human, lance corporal moved out of the group, over to where the two senior officers were standing. After coming to attention the gorgeous redhead spoke up. "Yes, Sir!"
"At ease, O'Malley," Jackson began. "I'm giving you a special assignment. During the mission, you will stay glued to the Major. You will shadow him, ensuring no one sneaks up on his six, understood?"
"Yes, Sir!" O'Malley replied smartly. She then looked over at Hans and smiled pleasantly. It would be my honor to be the eyes in the back of your skull, Sir."
Adlerstein rolled his eyes. “Relax there Lance, I can’t promote you no matter how much smoke you blow.” Turning back to Jackson, the German said “Won’t her fire team need her? I’m also quite capable of seeing myself through this you know. I can even be back by curfew!”
Without missing a beat, Jackson looked at O'Malley and asked. "What's your Twelfth General Order, Lance Corporal?"
Nonplussed, O'Malley replied. "Sir! My Twelfth General Order states that no officer of flag rank, regardless of training, shall go into a hotzone unescorted, Sir!"
Jackson fought hard to keep the smirk off his face. As every Marine knew, there were, in fact, only eleven general orders. Jackson was both proud that one of his had read the room properly and followed his lead. He just hoped that Hans would read between the lines and go along with the protection he was being given.
Adleratein indeed saw that argument would get him little. “I’m not a FO, but thanks for the verbal promotion Corporal.” The German quipped deadpan. He realized he had given a verbal promotion himself, but started to move before it could be commented on.
"Gamma team, Saddle up!" Jackson barked aloud, as he picked up his phaser rifle and straightened his ballcap on his head. The marines quickly fell in behind him as they made their way to the nearby transporter room. Once everyone was on the large pad, Jackson reached up and tapped his combadge. "Bridge, Jackson. Gamma team ready to transport to the enemy brig on your order."
::Bridge, USS Arcadia::
"Stand by, Bravo and Gamma Teams." Nola responded through the intercom as the ship convulsed again.
"Shields are down to 47%." K'vagh reported from his station. "There are hull breaches on decks 15, 16, 23 and 41. Emergency shields are holding."
Nola cursed under her breath. Even with one of the three warp cores dedicated to provide power to the shields, the Themyscira was still tearing through them like a child's play.
::Outside the Main Computer Core, USS Themyscira::
The firefight back and forth had continued unabated. One of their assailants had gone down but they were still outnumbered a decent two to one.
"We need to breach that door, Private!" Yorlisna had pushed herself against the wall as phaser fire passed her by. "We'll cover you, set it up!"
Private Palmer, the demolitions expect in the team, grabbed the bag from his back, while maintaining a low profile. He got the breach charge from the pack and placed it in the centre of the door. The doors protecting the computer cores were well reinforced. He knew that. He had prepared for that. The charge should be strong enough.
"Charge armed." He called, detonator in hand, as another volley of phaser fire ripped through the hallway and into the walls around them.
"Fire in the hole!"
This was something they were all too familiar with. There was always something to breach. Something to punch through to get to their objective. If it would be a straight forward walk in they wouldn't be sending her team. Another flurry of phaser fire came through the hallway. In the moment of silence between shots the hallway filled with a thunderous roar. Smoke billowed into the corridor as the doors buckled under the explosion aimed inward.
"Not a full breach." The call from Palmer was heartrending.
"Can we get inside?" Yorlisna demanded to know.
"We didn't sign up for easy, Private, get inside!"
Palmer left his bag and the detonator and picked his rifle back up. The doors had buckled enough to push himself through but there would be a moment that he exposed himself to whomever was on the other side.
"Lightning." He called the code word and lobbed a flash grenade inside, waited for the detonation and immediately pushed himself through the hole.
"Go! Go! Go!" Yorlisna called to her other men, still firing away at the future men and women of the Federation. If they were getting into the computer room they would probably have trouble getting out. Their primary objective was getting the program uploaded. All the rest was secondary.
"Hit the lights!" Called the last one of the squad that made it out to Yorlisna, notifying her she had to make a break for it. She grabbed a smoke canister from her belt and tossed it down the corridor before making a sprint to the door. Palmer hadn't been lying when he said they could barely get through. The reinforcements to this door must've been improved from the blueprints they had gotten for the Elysium class. As she stepped through the hole she heard a phaser blast go off in the distance and near instantly felt a heat in her lower back.
There wasn't really any force to the impact but she tumbled forward anyway, into the computer core. Immediately she reached in her pocket and held out the rod towards her nearest squad member.
::Bridge, USS Arcadia::
"Alpha Team reports they have uploaded the program." said K'vagh, finally giving Nola the news she had been waiting for.
Turning to her chief engineer, the ship's acting CO asked, "Lieutenant Alkan?"
Malaya remained quiet from where she stood on the bridge. Ciphering code was tedious work and what may have been another fifteen seconds, did she feel comfortable enough to reply.
"Engines and weapons are locked in shutdown and are now in stasis. Shield systems have three firewalls blocking their access. I am now activating the holographic interface of Themyscira's AI."
Malaya began to think all was well upon initial insertion. Maybe there was nothing at all to worry about.
"Elbrun to Bravo and Gamma teams, the Themyscira's shields are down and she's dead in the water. Proceed as planned."
::Marine Country, USS Arcadia::
Jackson nodded at the command from the bridge. Looking over at the transporter officer, he gave the word. "Energize." Seconds later, the entire team vanished and were transported over to the enemy vessel.
As Hans’ vision filled with blue sparkles, he had one last thought.
For the love of God, just don’t do anything embarrassing.
::Bridge, USS Themyscira::
"I need my own ship back, Hekoa!" Nami shouted from her chair.
The human shook his head from the operations station. "I'm completely locked out of tactical, security, and engineering. It looks like they uploaded a virus when they took the main computer core."
"Then activate the sentry drones. They are separate from the rest of the ship's system." said Nami as she got up from her chair and moved to the weapons' locker behind the security station. "Arm yourself and shoot anything that comes through that lift."
::Near the Brig, USS Themyscira::
The familiar blue-white energy swirls appeared at a corridor cross path, delivering Hans, Jackson, and the rest of the Gamma Team Marines on the same deck as the brig. As soon as the transport cycle was finished, the Marines fanned out, covering every angle from which an enemy could approach. After sending a signal back to Arcadia that the transport was a success, Jackson wordlessly issued orders to move out.
Two security men appeared from around a bend, startling both parties. The taller of them cried out for them to freeze before he was shot down. His compatriot fared better, even managing a burst from his rifle before he too was stunned to the deck.
Once both security officers were down, Jackson knew there was no going back. He would either accomplish his mission, or he and his Marines would die trying. Remembering the ship layout from the briefings, he knew that the main brig compartment was four sections away. He quickly moved his team out, ensuring that Hans was in the center, not to say that the German couldn't take care of himself, but, as a major, he was a high value target himself. If they made it out of this, Jackson promised himself that he would run his friend through some of his training cycles, just to show him the difference between the two of them.
They advanced through the next three sections unmolested, which started to concern Jackson. If he had been in charge of internal security, his team would have to fight for every inch.
As his team approached the next section, a stun grenade was tossed around the corner towards them. "GRENADE!" He barked as he slammed his eyes shut and turned away from the coming blast. The grenade bounced once and then exploded in a blinding flash of light and concussive sound. A few of his Marines did not react fast enough to his warning and were temporarily disoriented by the explosion.
Before Jackson could recover, the enemy advanced, firing their phaser rifles towards Jackson's team. A vicious firefight ensued, with Jackson moving his team back the way they came, to find some cover. Two of his team were down, first from the grenade, and then from the phaser fire. He had a total of six more team members with him, including Hans. As his team began to return fire, the two fallen members of his team were pulled to safety and the team medic began to work on them. While one would be able to return to the fight, the other, Lance Corporal O'Malley, was not as fortunate. She had taken two high power phaser rifle shots to her chest, as she moved to shield the Major, killing her in the process.
Hans found himself near Jackson, the two officers poking their heads out occasionally to fire off phaser shots. Hans’ were possibly more cathartic than Jackson’s, meant more to physically express anger than as tactical fire.
“A real pickle Jack.” Adlerstein commented dryly. A careful listener might have detected the slight tremble in the German’s voice, indicating that he was actually more scared than he let on.
Hans was getting tired of simply exchanging fire, the thought punctuated by a shot that impacted the adjacent wall, sending bits of bulkhead towards him. The German brushed off the flecks of grey metal off his uniform.
“To hell with this.” He muttered. Aloud, to Werner, he said. “Jack!” Having to shout above the din of swearing and battle. “I think the corridor behind us might connect with where those baddies are. I’m going to take a man and try and flank them!”
Adlerstein felt that Jack would argue with him. “Listen Jack, I might be wrong, and if I’m wrong, it’ll either hurt, or reduce your combat power. Better you lose one silly Major with a hand phaser than a fire team. Either we flank or eventually they might try. So are you gonna argue or give me a man?”
Taking in the current tactical situation, Jackson couldn't argue that the Major's plan could work. However, by splitting his team, things would have to go perfectly. After pausing a beat, he finally nodded. "Alright, Major, but if you get your ass shot, you'll have to deal with my wrath!" He then signaled for a young Bolian. "Rixx, go with the Major!" He then looked back at Hans. "I'll give you ten seconds to get into position. Wait for my signal to attack."
“Go code will be three taps of your combadge.” Adlerstein offered. Softer, so only Jack could hear: “ As for my ass, even burned and charred, it’ll look better than your ugly mug.” He smirked to both show there was no rancor meant and to disguise his own nerves.
Jackson smirked as he pulled out two photon grenades. "I had something else in mind." He let the idea sink in, then pulled the pins on either grenade. "Go," was all he said.
Adlerstein all but pushed his Bolian tagalong down the corridor. He didn’t want to be shot, but he feared grenades even more than phasers. Phasers were meant to stun or kill, but a grenade was meant to wound. The thought of shrapnel piercing his gut or a blast wave scrambling his brain was a scary thought to him. He disappeared down the corridor into an adjacent room.
Once Hans was out of sight, Jackson counted to ten, then shouted, "FIRE IN THE HOLE!" He toss ed the grenade in his right hand backwards, towards the enemy, bouncing it along the deck. He then spun to face the direction of the enemy and hurled the grenade in his left hand, giving it a higher arc, hoping to catch the enemy in between the two explosions. As soon as the second grenade left his hand, he dove back down the corridor he had been fighting from, and braced for the explosions.
Less than two beats later, the deck was rocked by double explosions. The lighting went out and several sections of corridor bulkheads simply vanished. After the shock wave died down, Jackson stood and lead his Marines towards the enemy position.
Reaching the area just outside the brig, he was met with the gruesome sight of mangled bodies. Apparently, the enemy had not expected the ferocity of his tactics. Moving to the double doors leading into the brig, Jackson got his team working on opening the door, while he stood guard, waiting for Hans to arrive.
A schuffle was heard, followed by several exchanges of phaser shots beyond a door to Jackson’s left. The Marines opened the door in time to shoot a security guard in the back. With that last one down, Adlerstein and his Bolian fellow stood from behind a collection of barrels. Someone had hit Hans in the face, a bruise starting to form on his cheek. Somewhere in that ten seconds, he had acquired a second hand phaser.He threw his hands up sheepishly.
“Sorry. Guess these guys had the same idea we had. All but stumbled over each other in here.” The German said.
Jackson grunted softly and nodded at Hans. He then addressed everyone present. "Stay frosty, people. This whole thing is seeming a bit too easy. Let's got our people and then get the hell outta here."
As if on cue, the doors to the brig finally slid open, revealing a large chamber that contained three large cells, one of which held their captured people.
Moving to the cell, Jackson indicated for his team to secure the room and get the force field down. "Sir," he addressed Lee, "Glad to see you're unharmed."
Adlerstein nodded to Lee. “Hey Skipper.” It seemed . . . inefficient as far as a means to express camaraderie and years of trust and working together. However, tearful reunions would have to wait.
Oliver and Korra had prepared themselves as soon as the first round of quantum torpedoes hit the Themyscira. But he had not expected to see Hans. Nami had let him to believe that his former XO on the Bunker Hill had gone down with his ship. The sight of German nearly overwhelmed him.
"By Rea! I thought . . ." he didn't finish his sentence and embraced the German as soon as the containment field was lowered. "How . . "
Suddenly, a shout of alarm came from the corridor. "Security drones incoming!"
Jackson reacted immediately, putting himself between the Captain and the incoming danger. Slapping his comm badge, he barked, "Arcadia, target secured! Lock onto all humanoid life signs near my location and energize!"
A trio of security drones swooped in just as shimmering transporter beams engulfed the entire away team, and their phaser beams harmlessly passed through the dissipating light.
[To be continued in part 3 . . .]
Captain Oliver A. Lee
USS Arcadia NCC-89015
Captain Nami Ishikawa
(NPC - Roger/Oliver)
Lieutenant Commander Johannes Adlerstein
Former Executive Officer
Lieutenant Kevan Dash
Chief Security Officer
USS Arcadia NCC-89015
(NPC - Roger/Oliver)
Lieutenant Terri C. Lee
Chief Science Officer
(NPC - Roger/Oliver)
Captain Jackson Werner
Marine Detachment (8th MEU, 2nd Battalion/3rd Regiment, Echo Company)