The Long Voyage Home Continues

Joeyray's Bar
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{Close as much as possible. We don't want you to miss and give him a chance to knock you out of the sky. Cloak and fire at will authorized.}
{Your fighters are getting kind of close, Captain. So I'm gonna talk really fast here. Basically, we share a common interest: we both like breathing and want to continue breathing. The reason I decided to get your attention is because the air is starting to get a little stale in here. I've been clinging to your hull for a lot longer than a short-range fighter craft like this is designed to be out in space, especially with the personalizations I've made. Since I'm gonna suffocate anyways, I figure I'll just detonate all my missiles at once. That should also set off my fuel supply, so it could be spectacular. I'm sure you're aware of where I am.}

Ian scans the readout briefly. "Blast," he mutters. It's positioned over a weak spot in the hull. A strong blast would rip a hole in the armor protecting the living quarters, where a large portion of the crew is currently moving into their new dwellings.

{Yeah, at about this time there'd be quite a few people in my area. Obviously we need to come to an agreement in the next few seconds, since you're just going to evacuate them otherwise. So, what's your answer? Call off the fighters, promise me quarter, and I'll come in.}

The captain considers for a long moment, then glances at Dale and James. "If you have something to say about this, say it quickly."
Chris looks over to the two officers on deck, his hand hovering over the bay door console. If people were going to die, if it was going to be now or later, but he wasn't going to be the one that decided when that would happen.

"We could refuse to roll dice by letting him simply blow and leaving a hole open and many dead. Or, we could take a risk and let a threat on board the ship. I suggest taking a risk and not sending all of those people to their deaths. Either way, I'll follow your orders, may it be casting lives or dice."
Ian grimaces. "My thoughts exactly. Mr. Watkins, call off the squadron. Have them stand at ready to defend the hangar bay if he violates our terms."

Reopening the channel, he addresses the Viking.

"I will require your immediate surrender. You will receive full quarter and will not be subjected to forceful interrogation. You will also confined to the brig."

{Sounds good. I'll follow your fighters in. Ciao.}
"And get his ship checked and the weapons disarmed. I don't want him pulling shenanigans again in the hanger." Chris flips some switches on the control console before getting up.

"Seeing that we aren't going anywhere for now, are we going to warp jump again after he boards or we delaying this for now?"
---[Natasha Kale]---

"Awesome. In case the traitor is just chillin' out down there, we'll catch 'em."

Tasha said it with such sincerety, only logic would reveal her sarcasm buried deep in her voice.

---[James Watkins]---

James didn't hesitate. For once.

"Abort! Abort, damnit! Cronus, call back your fighters immediately!"

As he watched the events unfold, it became more and more obvious to him that they needed to cooperate with the lone viking pilot. James was glad Ian made the call and he was able to carry it out. Assuming, of course, that they would carry it out in time.
I glare back towards Natasha.
"Well where would you look first cause right now I am looking at areas where they may be able to disable us while the Dominion comes in for the kill." I reply rather harshly.
{Why the hell am I calling off the fighters? What the hell is even going on?} Growling in annoyance, I shift back to Ember Squadron's channel. {All fighters in Ember squadron, hold fire and go into a holding pattern. The big men upstairs are being vague.}
I growl softly as I pull my fighter out of its intercept course and start into a large lazy loop around the viking but still in weapons range if needed. {I was just getting ready to line up a nice shot ...} I flick the switch to disarm my Gemini Missiles.
The Viking makes no move to release from the hull.

{I certainly hope you're not trying to buy time, Captain.} He says dangerously. {I don't have much to spare. Call. Off. The @^#%ing fighters!}
---[Natasha Kale]---

"Well, honestly, sir, I'd be looking for where there's most people. The crew's a skeletal one and somebody's got to know something. Wouldn't you have more chance near somebody rather than looking for the off-chance that the traitor is in the maintenance shafts?"

Even she was surprised by 'sir' returning to her speech. She also spoke in a more respectful tone, which was equally surprising. The man just admitted to having emotions for her, he's not going to actually carry out disciplinary actions. Besides, the only reason why you're there is because he convinced her that he wasn't doing anything official.

--[James Watkins]---

And I thought I was the only one not acting tip-top shape.

{That's... Confidential information, soldier. Do as instructed. The fighter will be following you into the hangar.} It made James feel superior to call someone 'soldier'. He found it fitting whenever he needed to put someone in their place.

---[Sasha Wood]---

{What!?} She shrieked, pressure on the trigger. She grunted and altered her course just enough to stay out of range of a lock and begrudgingly circled back to the hangar. !@#$%^-it, she thought to herself out loud.
I laugh dryly before replying to Watkins. {Soldier, huh? Let me spell this out. My fighters will remain in a holding pattern until the viking moves, if he moves. When, and if, he goes into the hangar, they will land. Unless I'm given a hell of a reason for another reason, that's how we'll play this. I won't loose lives because you don't think we need to know what's going on.} Noticing Sasha heading back, I growl softly.

{Miss Wood, I said holding pattern, not return.}
I ponder on what she was saying for a moment. While it was true we had a small crew so the chances of someone knowing something was rather high but then again there was the off chance the traitor was in a position that goes rather unnoticed therefore making their job easier.
"I see your point Miss Kale." I say as I stop just before the turn to the maintenance shaft entrance. I was starting to doubt my judgement again like I have before with several missions and choices in my past. Many of them I was better off with the first choice but still went another route because of my self doubt.

I shake my head to clear my mind of the thoughts before opening a private line to the captain.
{Dan Flint reporting in Captain. Currently searching the ship for the traitor in the maintenance area on the same level as the mess hall. Hopefully they haven't caught on yet that we are looking for them, least not fully caught on.}
Kelly shakes her head, bringing her ship to a halt and cutting the thrusters to conserve fuel. She opens up a CD tray and puts a disk on it, closing it gently. She adjusts the volume to be somewhat faint, and waits, letting music play. "While they work out where they fell apart at, I'm going to relax." Kelly whispers to herself, adjusting the radio to receive-only.

Across the Battlecruiser, airlocks opened and SCVs exited. {Bridge, this is Lead Engineer Mike. We're beginning repairs. We have several small teams outside the ship to repair weapons and armor, and a larger team inside, working on the drive and other systems. Give us a heads-up if fighters start heading our way.} Mike radios, carrying his large collection of scrap metal as the other engineer leads the way. {We should have most of the work done in a few days, assuming no interruptions and no more damage. Neither of which is likely at this stage.}
---[James Watkins]---

Now James' feathers had been ruffled. His feeling of superiority had slowly begun to melt as he realized his men would question orders. He forgot what to do when someone questioned orders and the mission was on the line. Hell, he forgot what to do when they followed orders and the mission was on the line.

{Cronus, I gave you a direct-} Suddenly it hit him. It would take too long to explain the situation to the Flight Chief as he demanded. And the Viking pilot's patience was wearing dangerously thin. The man might respect Ian's orders, but James didn't want to turn to Ian. He wanted to prove once and for all he could get the job done himself.

Stopping mid sentence, James released the button prematurely and disconnected with the Flight Chief. He then hurried over to the communications officer's station and, while the man was still seated, leaned over and manually cut the Flight Chief's connection with Ember Squadron and replaced it with direct communication from the Bridge.

{All fighters in Ember Squadron, this is First Officer James Watkins, retreat back to your original hangar. Be advised, the former bogey will be accompanying you. Repeat, fall back to the hangar.}

James stood back up and smiled. "How's that feel, soldier?" He said to himself, mocking the Flight Chief's terms and demands. "That's what happens when you threaten James Watkins... Nobody threatens James Watkins..."

---[Sasha Wood]---

{Just circling around, sir.} Sasha blushed as she lied through her teeth. For whatever reason, she actually was flying back to the hangar. As if she didn't take out the bogey right then and there, it was mission over.

Sasha took a deep breath and exhaled all her anxiety. It quickly returned. Suddenly, the First Officer's voice came through the comms. What? Joseph said the big man upstairs was being vague, but...

Something was not right. Why wasn't the Flight Chief giving the order? Why wouldn't we terminate the hostile? Most of all, why would we let him in the hangar!?

{Anyone else picking up this bullsh*t?} Sasha swore into the comms of the other fighter pilots. Reluctantly, Sasha followed the First Officer's orders and continued her trek back to the hangar.

---[Natasha Kale]---

I sure hope you see my point, it's a damn good one. Tasha folded her arms and looked around the hall, begging for things to focus on while Dan reported to the Captain.
I look back at Natasha real quick as I catch what she was thinking.
"If you would prefer why don't you start making your way there. Regardless of where we start there is a lot of ground to cover. You find someone that you think might be them hail me on the comm."
With that I return scanning the minds in the nearby area. Being as few as they where it mad processing the thoughts and pinning them to their owners much easier.
I growl under my breath. "Wrong move, pretty boy." Opening the channel, I bellow into the mic. {I gave an order to enter a holding pattern and that's what you'll damn well do. We are not well enough informed to allow a bogey to enter our hangar unwatched.} So the first officer thought he was clever? It would seem he's never dealt with a marine with men and women to keep alive and get back to family. Opening an intercom to the bridge, I speak into the mic.

[Captain Ian, I request an immediate answer to these questions. Why in the hell are we letting a Dominion pilot with a Dominion transceiver into our hangar? More importantly, why is it that I'm being kept out of the loop if it's so important? Please respond on the interdeck com channel. Cronus out.]
Kelly winces and turns the volume on the radio down. She stares at the radio to listen to the rest of the Flight Chief's words, and rubs her flight goggles. Wow. Already bickering. That was quick. She thinks to herself, adjusting the radio again. She turns the mike to send and receive, and radios the Battlecruiser. {Bridge, this is Ember Squadron.} She exaggerates the word Ember with sarcasm, then continues. {Can someone confirm orders from the First Officer? And verify that said..... bogey.... won't be hostile?}
---[Natasha Kale]---

"As you wish." Natasha saluted Dan and jogged off down the corridor.

OOC: Anyone available for interaction with Tasha?

---[James Watkins]---

{Fortunately, we here on the bridge are well enough informed.} James leaned back over and cut the flight chief's connection with Ember Squadron once again.

{This is First Officer James Watkins under direct orders from the Captain. Abort mission and return to the hangar. Be advised, the target will be joining you. He is friendly and is not to be engaged.} James addressed Ember Squadron once again. This time with urgency creeping into his voice.

James used his authority password to lock the Flight Chief's communications with Ember Squadron. This one would take his password, or the Captain's override code, to undo. He wasn't sure how the Flight Chief was able to bypass it last time, but it seemed irrelevant now. Cronus' direct negligence to follow an order was a major problem. One that Watkins secretly wished blew up in his face, that way he could nail him to the wall with it.

---[Sasha Wood]---

"What the- ..." Sasha frowned in confusion. She slowed at the Flight Chief's bellowing orders, but when the First Officer came back, she resumed her course to the bridge.
"Ha, personal com units, jack hole." Switching my own on and ensuring there was no extra listeners, I speak again. {Until we know what's going on, remain in your holding pattern. Even if he lands, I'm not giving him a chance to damage our ship or kill one of you.} Sighing, I shake my head in the direction of the bridge. A first officer with no idea how engagements work from the ground. That's wonderful. Top that with an assumption everyone's gonna just fall in's going to be a long trip.

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