Episode Number: 111
Written by: Marco Rafalá
Directed by: Jon Crew
Transmission: 17th April 2021
- Crewman Samuel Ewendi: engineer
- Lieutenant John Kearney: Armory Officer, SS Atlantis NX-05
- Lieutenant Darlene Phillips: Chief Engineer, SS Atlantis NX-05 (seen only)
Captain’s Log: Stardate 9842.6, supplemental
We have recovered the lone survivor of a stranded 22nd-century shuttlepod from the surface of BC-04d. As the BC-04 system is embedded within a large time dilation field caused by an unstable wormhole, it appears only six years have passed for Lt Kearney, despite over 130 years passing outside the Black Cluster. Meanwhile, we have identified what appears to the starship SS Atlantis stranded within the wormhole’s maw itself. We are attempting to discover if Atlantis herself is also carrying survivors that may need rescue, while planning our own escape from the wormhole’s ongoing expansion.
Plot: As the mouth of the wormhole expands, the crew turns its attention to the possibility of rescuing the crew of Atlantis, and staging their own escape.
The ‘A’ Plot: With the ship’s power being expended rapidly in an effort to resist the wormhole’s pull, Captain Masuda calls a senior staff meeting to discuss possible solutions. Given the rapid power-drain resulting from opposing the pull of the wormhole, she decides to use the gravitational incline to their advantage: by allowing the wormhole to pull them in, they can move towards the stranded ship more rapidly while regenerating their power reserves. The only downside is avoiding the Romulan mines…
As Lt Valik attempts to reroute power and the Communications officer attempts to break through the distortion to contact Atlantis, Ensigns Kheled and Locke begin the complicated process of navigating the wormhole. Kheled pilots the vessel at impulse towards her destination, while Locke monitors the sensors for signs of mines. On several occasions, he spots one, giving Kheled enough warning that the ship can manoeuvre around it. Unfortunately, the radiation emissions of the wormhole wreak havoc with the sensors, blinding the most useful and forcing Locke to use less suitable systems.
Eventually, they reach a point within a few hundred kilometres of Atlantis. Sensor sweeps show that several sections seem to have power and to be supporting humanoid life. Unfortunately, although Comms is able to send a clear message, there is no response from the stricken starship.
Evidently a landing party would need to board her. Given the gravitational surges, shuttle travel would not be safe, so transporters would need to be used – with power restrictions suggesting a small party. She opts to go in person, taking Lt Astan, Dr Vale and Crewman Ewendi from engineering.
They materialise on the transporter platform of the archaic vessel. The room is dark, under emergency lighting only, and the sounds of shouts and energy weapons fire can be heard from the corridors beyond. Astan forces the doors open and they venture into the ship.
The sounds of combat are coming from beyond a pile of rubble, so Astan clambers up to get a look. He sees two groups of humans, in blue coveralls, firing phase pistols at each other from cover at opposite ends of the passage. He reports the situation back to Masuda, who decides to take the situation in hand.
She climbs of the pile and steps out into the corridor, announcing her identity in a loud voice, and demanding both sides stand down. Her gambit works and the gunfire stops, but members of one side take the opportunity to escape with a captive. She attempts to get both groups to tell her what’s happening, but gets a garbled story about shapeshifting aliens trying to invade the galaxy.
While one group, apparently working for the First Officer of Atlantis, seems reluctant to talk, withdrawing to another floor via a Jefferies tube, a representative of the other side, apparently supporters of the Chief Engineer, does stay to talk briefly. He explains that, after encountering a shape-shifting alien, the First Officer orchestrated the assassination of the Captain, and attempted to take control of the ship. The Chief Engineer opposed the coup and the two factions had been fighting ever since, neither able to trust the other.
When Masuda suggests that maybe she could talk to the Chief Engineer, their informant tells her that the command faction have just abducted their leader. Maybe if they rescue her they would be able to talk?
Dialogue: “This is Captain Masuda Akari of the Starfleet vessel Lyonesse. Put up your arms and stand down!”
Observations: The crew of Atlantis appears to have split into at least two factions, centered on the first officer and chief engineer. The engineering faction believe the command group are working with a hostile shape-shifting alien.
References: Captain Masuda considers whether the crew have been affected by a water-borne substance such as that found on Psi 2000.
In a brief discussion about shapeshifting aliens, salt vampires and chameloids are mentioned. Neither seem relevant to the current situation.
Questions: What really happened to the Captain of Atlantis? And who is the alien?