Flashback: Hostile Encounter

Posted on Fri Jul 27th, 2018 @ 5:45am by Captain R'kiriin & Commander Juliette Kane Esq. & Lieutenant Commander Kendra Cartwright & Lieutenant Commander T'Pyn & Lieutenant Dalagain ch'Ktashan & Lieutenant Donovan Swift Jr.

Mission: Prologue: Everything Old...
Location: Bridge, U.S.S. Shasta
Timeline: Year: 2243

Flashes of neon green energy arced out, illuminating the darkness of space around the U.S.S. Shasta. Only a few hundred kilometers away, a strange, alien vessel towered over the small Walker-class explorer raining disruptor fire down on the Federation ship. Their deflector shields sizzled under the assault, flashing electric blue with each successive impact. The alien vessel was a monolithic structure consisting of more than one-hundred decks and more than three times the firepower of the smaller ship. The Shasta was returning fire, small beams of crimson nadion radiation blasting back against the more powerful ship's own defensive screens.

Unlike most Starfleet ships, the Shasta's bridge was located on deck seven on the underside of the saucer section. Inside, the command center was buzzing with activity. "Shields at 75%!" lieutenant Donovan Swift cried out from the tactical station off to the starboard side of the captain's chair. His blond hair was uncharacteristically tussled and he pushed it out of his eyes as his hands played over the surface of the tactical controls.

"Divert auxiliary power to the shields," R'kiriin, the ship's commanding officer said calmly from the center seat. "Helm, full impulse. Bring us about one-hundred-eighty degrees, bearing two-two-four, mark six; put them in the targeting arc of our phase cannons." The white furred Caitian stood up and ran a paw down the side of his blue uniform. He extended a single furry digit and tapped at the console to the side of his station. "Doctor T'Pyn, prepare to receive wounded. We are engaging the Sk'lath," he his tone was ominous.

The stoic tones of the Vulcan physician replied almost instantly. "Acknowledged captain."

Anything more the doctor might have said was cut off as the Shasta was rocked by another volley of disruptor fire. The environmental systems control station exploded in a shower of sparks and the crewman manning that station flew backward, sprawling across the cold metal deck plating. His craggy Tellarite features were charred from explosion and he groaned as he lost consciousness. "Medical emergency on the bridge," R'kiriin said, still sounding cool and collected even while they were under heavy fire. "Fire cannons," he said walking toward the helmsman's station at the front of the bridge.

Rapid fire bursts of phased energy rocketed out from the cannons mounted at the front of the Starfleet ship. The larger ship's shields continued to hold even under the increased pressure from the Shasta's weapons, registering as only small white flashes each time the blasts hit their mark. "Prepare photon torpedoes, full spread," the captain said, coming to rest a furry paw on the edge of the flight controls. "Target phasers on their warp engines," he said looking back at lieutenant Swift.

"Aye sir," the tactical officer called back sounding defeated already. "Shields at sixty-five percent, captain."

R'kiriin didn't respond the news about the shields. They hadn't reached a critical point with their defensive systems yet. "Mr. th'Ktashan, prepare to jump to warp as soon as their engines are offline." He looked down at the Andorian pilot to his side.

The bridge rocked again as the Shasta continued to take fire from the Sk'lath vessel. Their exploratory mission into the far-reaches of the Beta Quadrant had taken a drastic turn for the worse when they had encountered the reptilian Sk'lath. Resembling a semi-human version of the king cobra from Earth, they had openly admitted to being slavers, intending to take the Federation crew prisoner to be used as labor for their empire. Now, more than ever, R'kiriin was thankful for the various offensive and defensive combat systems routinely installed on Starfleet's ships.

"Yes sir," Dalagain replied coolly from the conn, steadying himself as the ship was shaken once more.

"Status of enemy shields?" R'kiriin asked turning away from the viewscreen and looked to Swift.

"Stronger than ours, sir!" the tactical officer snapped back irritably. "I'm sorry sir," he corrected himself almost instantly. "Around eighty percent and holding, captain."

"Fire photons," R'kiriin said striding back to the center of the bridge and positioning himself back in the command chair. Again he tapped the console and opened a communications channel, this time to engineering. "Commander Cartwright," he said smoothly, "we are preparing to go to warp. I need warp six."

"Shouldn't be a problem, sir," lieutenant commander Kendra Cartwright, the ship's chief engineer said over the frequency. "Just make it quick. That isn't a permanent guarantee."

On the viewscreen there was an explosion between two of the large metal alloy plates that made up the surface of the Sk'lath ship. Even so, they continued to rain down emerald energies on the Shasta's shields. "Enemy engines disabled!" Swift cried out, his tone turning celebratory.

"As you would say, lieutenant th'Ktashan, 'punch it,'" R'kiriin.

As the weapons fire continued to fall the Shasta's nacelles flashed blue. There was a short moment where time seemed to stand still before rushing forward again far in excess of the speed of light. The small ship jumped to warp six escaping from combat with the Sk'lath aggressors. "We're clear of the combat zone," the Andorian pilot, Dalagain th'Ktashan said happily as the stars appeared to streak by on the viewer.

"They'll be back," R'kiriin said ominously. "And I have a feeling they won't be alone."