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    Star Trek Online: Once Per Year


    Director of Intelligence

    Fleet Rank : Fleet Admiral
    Special Operations Rank : SPO Fleet Admiral
    Intel Department Rank : INT Fleet Admiral
    Number of posts : 4638
    Location : Serenity Station
    Ship Name : U.S.S. ACHERON
    Ship Registry Number : NCC-97397-D
    Ship Class : Eclipse Class Intel Cruiser (Special Operations Refit)
    Fleet Division : Intel/Special Ops

    Main RP Character Profile
    Name: Pyriel Danto

    Star Trek Online: Once Per Year

    Post by Pyriel32 on Thu Apr 14, 2016 11:52 am

    When Benjamin Walker finally had a moment to slow down and catch up on his messages, he realized with a surprise that he’d actually returned to his home timeline, and he might actually have the opportunity to see friends and family in person. He made a note to see if he could fit in a visit. At this point he’d seen so many planets in so many stages of history, he really didn’t care if it meant going to Andoria or New Romulus or Qo’noS. He’d been away for too much subjective time and he didn’t want to miss any opportunities to see family… especially since the delicate handling of the Temporal Cold War always meant the possibility of losing someone unexpectedly to a temporal incursion.

    His message queue was full, as always, with the usual automatically-generated report notifications. Most of the organizational work was handled by lower level staff members or even by the ship’s computer, and this generated a tremendous amount of clutter. Fortunately, his staff and the computer did an excellent job of sorting that clutter and isolating important messages, allowing him to focus on other matters where his attention was better used.

    Leaning forward in his seat, he tapped the interface directing the computer to bring up messages that seemed the most likely to match his personal interests, and screened out work-related alerts. The computer made its usual soft chiming sound—it always sounds like it’s digesting the data, he thought—then provided him with a short list, the first of which was from his first officer.

    Since Nereda rarely sent him personal messages unrelated to ship’s business, this did catch his interest. “Play message,” he directed the computer.

    Nereda’s languid voice emanated from the ambient sound modulators as her hologram appeared on the message podium. “Ben, I just found out about the human custom of birthdays, so of course I couldn’t let this ridiculous tradition go by without participating. Since we’ve been serving together for a few years of relative time now, you must have had at least a few birthdays. I’ve put together something for you.”

    Ben groaned inwardly. While his Cardassian XO was a fine officer, she had a sharp wit and a liking for slightly embarrassing humor, which occasionally left Ben wondering about her double meanings and amused reptilian smiles.

    “Anyway, I’ve assembled some files and attached them to this message. They’re very old video and audio files, and it took a bit of work to track them down and clean them up. I know how humans enjoy the… art of 20th and 21st century Earth history, so I found you some old entertainment and documentary footage,” the Cardassian’s voice continued.

    Ben glanced over at his computer screen, which, sure enough, pointed to a set of video files.

    “Happy birthday, Ben. And many more to come, I hope.”

    The computer chirped to signal the end of message.

    Ben sighed and keyed the console to extrapolate the first video into a holographic format, wondering how Nereda was teasing him this time.

    Walker quickly discovered that Nereda had been very hard at work indeed; one of the documentary pieces focused on a series of cryptid incidents in Walker County, Alabama, Earth. The county, in fact, was named for John Williams Walker, himself a remote ancestor of Ben. He was less than an hour into the collection of clips when his heart suddenly jumped at the scratchy video and muffled audio from one of the conspiratorial investigations.

    “Commander Nereda, I need to see you immediately. My quarters,” Walker said after tapping his comm panel.

    Nereda’s cool voice came back through almost immediately. “I see you finally got my message. I’ll be right there, Captain.”

    Standing amidst the extrapolated holograms, Walker paused the video and pointed. “There. You see him? Not too far from my great, great, great, great… lot of greats… grandfather,” he said to Nereda.

    Nereda stepped forward into a shadowy corner of the holographic extrapolation. “Computer, enlarge and enhance grid A3,” she said after a moment.

    The paused image, slightly grainy but with the slick hues of computer-adjusted clean-up, leaped up in brightness and clarity as the computer obliged. There, in the background, in the woods of Alabama, in a 21st-century biohazard suit, was the unmistakable face of a Na’kuhl.

    Nereda straightened and said, “All right, so it’s one of their historical agents. What do we do about it?”

    Walker ran a hand through his dark hair and replied, “We have to stop them, of course. And it’s obvious that they’ve been going further back in history, seeding agents in places that will affect the development of human society. We have to assume that they may be tampering with others in a similar fashion.”

    “That’s been their plan all along,” said Nereda. “This isn’t new.”

    Walker exhaled and said, “But you assembled this old footage from a collection of clips and documents dating as far back as the 18th century, and you looked for connections to me. This is personal. Whether the Na’kuhl did it purposefully or not, they’re tampering with my ancestral timeline.”

    Nereda’s breath hissed inward. “I hadn’t realized. Ben, you’re right. What if they change or remove you?” she said.

    Walker responded, “I think they just got lucky this time. Since I’m still part of the timeline, we can assume they haven’t made a connection… yet. But we need to widen our search. Earth has a rich history of monsters and sightings of strange creatures.”

    Nereda nodded. “Like your culture hero, Dracula,” she said. “Didn’t your people believe him to have… supernatural abilities? Shapeshifting, mesmerism, animal control? And that he needed to drain the lifeforce of humans to survive?”

    Ben looked at her quizzically for a moment, then said, “I suppose from a Cardassian perspective he’s a heroic figure. From a current human perspective he was a brutal war leader. Historically, Dracula was a warlord protecting his lands from invading Turks, by extremely pragmatic and sometimes cruel means. The legends of him as a blood-drinking nocturnal predator came later, as a form of fiction added on to the story. Though, as the saying goes, any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.”

    “He knew how to defend a tenuous position and he didn’t take no for an answer,” said Nereda. “That aside, you’re saying that we need to start figuring out if some of the “monsters” seen in those sightings were actually Na’kuhl?”

    Walker nodded. “That’s exactly it. Pictures, journals, descriptions of monsters… humanoid creatures with a fearsome countenance, red eyes, gaunt faces. We already know that Captain Archer encountered some of them in Earth’s second world war. Now we need to expand our search, go further back.”

    Nereda nodded. “I’ll start getting the historians and A&A department looking.”

    “One more thing,” Walker added. “If they succeed in altering the past enough to change my family history… it could cause big changes for us here and now. Nereda, you need to be ready to take command of the Pastak.”

    A human officer might’ve reacted with shock, or tried to reassure the captain, but Nereda simply nodded again, more slowly. “I understand. You might never become a captain, or even exist. I’ll set our temporally shielded archives to flag an alert if there’s a change to your biodata or records.”

    “It’s also possible that the only reason that I’m a starship captain in our timeline is because of a change they’ve already made. Undoing their tampering could have repercussions as well,” Walker said. “Our mission concerns the whole galaxy. It goes without saying that if this changes or removes me from the timeline, you cannot abort the mission.”

    Nereda’s dark eyes blinked slowly, sparkling in the recessed facial ridges, and she said, “Understood. I like you, Ben, which is why I will respect your conviction by being ready to sacrifice you for the good of the galaxy. If it comes to that.”

    Walker sighed. “If it comes to that. Oh, and Nereda?”

    “Yes, Captain?” she said.

    “While the idea of being erased from history by an executive officer who ruthlessly follows orders does leave me a bit queasy, we’ve served together long enough for me to understand you, I think. So… thank you.”

    Nereda smiled thinly. “Don’t mention it, Captain.”

    Flag Captain Alpha Squad
    Flag Captain Alpha Squad

    Fleet Rank : Flag Captain
    Science Department Rank : SCI Captain
    Number of posts : 754
    Location : Lancashire, UK
    Ship Name : Magpie
    Ship Class : Aurora Class Science Vessel (Fleet Refit)
    Fleet Division : Science/Medical

    Main RP Character Profile
    Name: Ellen Hare

    Re: Star Trek Online: Once Per Year

    Post by HareBrained on Sat Apr 16, 2016 8:00 am

    Hah, this is good. Nereda is becoming a good character - although nothing like him, she's a little bit in Spock's position - somebody so ruthlessly upright that the captain can trust her absolutely, even to kill him. I like the twist of the Na'kuhl being seen at the scene of a monster investigation, but as one of the forensics people, not the monster!


    Director of Intelligence

    Fleet Rank : Fleet Admiral
    Special Operations Rank : SPO Fleet Admiral
    Intel Department Rank : INT Fleet Admiral
    Number of posts : 4638
    Location : Serenity Station
    Ship Name : U.S.S. ACHERON
    Ship Registry Number : NCC-97397-D
    Ship Class : Eclipse Class Intel Cruiser (Special Operations Refit)
    Fleet Division : Intel/Special Ops

    Main RP Character Profile
    Name: Pyriel Danto

    Re: Star Trek Online: Once Per Year

    Post by Pyriel32 on Sun May 01, 2016 3:42 pm

    Teadhu sat in his desk waiting for class to start. He unconsciously brushed his hands through his short, auburn hair, unable to control his nervous excitement. The teacher, Professor Maureana Barkley, was a renowned scholar in temporal mechanics and was currently visiting for the semester. Technically this class was graduate level, but Teadhu had obtained a special dispensation from the dean to attend the course. No mean feat, considering his Krenim ancestry. Although it had been several centuries since the conflict with Noye’s Krenim, people of Krenim ancestry were still regarded suspiciously, especially when they showed a keen interest in temporal mechanics.

    Most advanced physics professors Teadhu had encountered had been sort of rumpled, absent-minded geniuses. But Professor Barkley was just the opposite. Her smart outfit was perfectly tailored, her hair coiffed, her makeup subtle but flawless. Her shoes clicked on the tile floor as she walked up to the podium in front of the class.

    She projected a holoimage of a wide, slow moving river. “This is the classical view of time. Flowing in a single direction from past to present, inexorably onwards. I call this the geocentric model, with our shared consensus timeline at the center. Any deviations to the timeline are corrected, seemingly by the inertia of the timestream itself.”

    “But, recent advances in temporal mechanics have revealed a quite different model,” the professor brought up another image, a time-lapse of a river delta flowing into the ocean, a million channels splitting and merging, ever shifting. As the class watched, the tide rose and washed away the channels cut into the silt by the fresh water. Then as the tide flowed out again, it revealed a smoothed plain of silt and sand, and an entirely new series of channels were carved by the water flowing to the sea.

    “We now understand that the timestream does not recognize any primacy. Much like the Ptolemaic model, our early models of time placed us at the center because of our own arrogance. But the science shows that no timeline is `pure’. The history that we have agreed on is simply consensus. Even that timeline has been manipulated by countless hands to create the fragile bubble we call history. Assiduously defended, of course, by our friends the temporal agents. But is this right? Is this moral? The Temporal Accords suggest a `correct’ timeline. But this is a political decision, not a scientific one.”

    “Sometimes people attempt to redirect the flows of time. In these cases, time appears to sometimes eddy, or pool. This in turn alters the flow of subsequent channels, strengthening some and weakening others. The important thing to understand here is that while we are experiencing a consensus timeline that we call reality, or history, or even the future (which is already decided, but that is a topic for a future lecture), those alternative flows exists in a potential state alongside our own, and it is only the collapse of the temporal waveform by observation by a conscious being that creates this effect we call history, much like the
    von Neumann–Wigner interpretation of quantum mechanics.”

    “This underlies our nascent technologies of temporal shielding. By isolating a temporal field, we can insulate a given consciousness or object from shifts in the timeline that would alter that person or object.”

    “Unlike the delta in the hologram, these channels are not washed away. All these alternate flows leave an imprint in the fabric of time. An imprint that can be perceived, and in some cases measured.”

    Suddenly, a temporal agent beamed into the lecture hall. “Apologies for the interruption. Professor, a word?”

    “Captain Walker,” said the professor, clearly irritated by the interruption. “Since you’ve already taken this class, I assume you are here on official business.”

    “Indeed. It won’t take but a moment.”

    Nodding, Barkley turned to face her students. “Just a moment, class,” she said tersely as she stepped away from the podium. She exchanged a few quick words with her uninvited guest, and then returned to the podium.

    “I apologize, but an urgent matter has arisen that needs my attention. But it also presents an excellent learning opportunity. A species called the Na’kuhl developed a form of ‘stealth’ time travel in the 27th century. They sent a number of operatives to the past to alter history in an attempt to thwart the Federation.”

    “For your homework, I would like you to locate and document one of these attempts. Describe the original flow of time, the change the Na’kuhl attempted to make, and the eventual outcome.”

    The professor then beamed out with the temporal agent.

    The other students glanced at each other, stunned by the turn of events. But Teadhu quickly gathered up his belongings and hurried to the Holoarchives.

    In the Archives, he summoned up a holomodel of the timestream, with its flowing and branching streams of colored light.

    “Computer, mark the locations of known Na’kuhl temporal incursions.” Blips began to light up across the model, indicating times the Na’kuhl attempted to alter the timelines, and their corrections. Large blips showed up around Earth’s Second World War and around the Enterprise NX-01 era. Smaller blips showed throughout history.

    Teadhu looked at the various known points, but none of them interested him. This was all well-charted territory. He wanted desperately, he realized, to discover something new. To find an incursion nobody else had discovered.

    But this was impossible. Although the Na’kuhl had traveled back in time via stealth, any changes they made to the timestream would be noticed and ultimately corrected.

    But, he began to wonder, what if they weren’t all successful in changing the timestream? Or not changing it sufficiently to achieve their aims? Could there be a “lost” Na’kuhl, prevented from completing his mission by forces in history themselves? And how would we ever know?

    Teashu thought about what the Professor said about changes in the timestream leaving imprints that could be read, and measured. Perhaps one of the Na’kuhl had traveled back but the changes were not sufficient to alter the flow of history. But if the professor was correct, there should be a tiny localized eddy related to the changes the Na’kuhl did make. Perhaps the computer could be calibrated to scan for such occurrences.

    He began his calculations.

    Daesk slipped into the rivers of the Nile under the cover of night. She swam easily up to the largest boat in the flotilla. She climbed up the side of the boat, flipping on her distortion field to hide her from any prying eyes.

    Fortunately, she was able to avoid detection as she found her way to Hadrian’s cabin. For an emperor, he slept in surprisingly spartan surroundings. She disabled the single guard at the door to his cabin, lowering him gently to the ground.

    She eased the cabin door open. The wood scraped on the floor, but she saw no stirring from the forms in the bed.

    She raised her rifle and took aim at the larger form on the bed. Just as she was about to squeeze the trigger, the smaller form leapt out of the bed at her, tackling her to the ground in an impressive leap. Her weapon discharged, directly into the chest of the Greek youth atop her. He flew back into a seated position for a moment, his youthful beardless face registered shock and amazement. He looked down at the large hole in his chest, and slumped to the floor.

    Hadrian had risen from the bed, and having seen the damage to his favorite, struggled with her for her weapon. “Empusa!” he shouted.

    Two sailors came bursting in the room at the noise and helped Hadrian disarm and secure her. They bound her with rope.

    As soon as she was secure, Hadrian bent over his favorite, Antinous. “You, who made my life complete, have now saved it. The world shall know your name,” as he wept over the cooling corpse.

    “Emperor, what shall we do with this creature?”

    “She can only be the spawn of Hecate. So back to Hecate she must go. She must be sacrificed, at midnight, at the crossroads. And none can ever know of the events of this night. It can never be learned that such a beast made an attempt on my life.”

    “It shall be so, my lord.”

    Professor Barkley turned to Teadhu.

    “I am most impressed. You have a bright future ahead of you in temporal mechanics.”

    “Thank you, Professor, I am honored.”

    “What is your fidelity percentage on this recording?”

    “Well, only 64%, currently. I am trying to increase it. But most of the uncertainty is related to specifics of locations and such.”

    “Indeed. And do you have any theories as to the motive of this Daesk?”

    “Only conjecture at this point, professor. But I believe she was trying to alter the event called the Bar Kokhba revolt. A people called the Jews revolted against their rulers, the Romans, of whom Hadrian was the emperor, just a couple years after this event. Hadrian defeated them and erased their country, called Judea or Israel, replacing it with a new one called Syrian Palestine. This general area was contested by at least three ancient Earth religions, and it became an intense source of conflict for the next two millennia. The ultimate resolution of these conflicts set the stage for the larger accords that united Earth after Zefram Cochrane’s experiment.”

    The Professor looked impressed, “Have you given any thought to your graduate studies?”

    Teadhu smiled sheepishly, “Well, I hoped to continue in temporal mechanics.”

    “That’s good,” she said, “Because I just happen to be in need of a new research assistant.”

    Sponsored content

    Re: Star Trek Online: Once Per Year

    Post by Sponsored content Today at 8:45 am

      Current date/time is Tue Oct 25, 2016 8:45 am