Episode Number: 2×03
Written by: Ian Lemke
Directed by: Jon Crew
Transmission: 19th November 2022
- Vice Admiral Hebert: Head of Starfleet operations in the Shackleton Expanse and commander of the 10th Fleet.
- Commander Murphy: Hebert’s adjutant.
- Security Specialist Jones: Human member of Lexington’s security department.
- Commander Erich Johanssen: Human commanding officer of the Epsilon 19 research station.
- Lenana Mosa: Bolian head researcher on Epsilon 19.
- Captain E’loruul: Orion captain of the Raktar’s Profit.
- Captain Atani Konin: Commanding officer of U.S.S. Minotaur NCC-42044.
So… It appears that Captain Adred resigned his post and his commission at approximately midnight last night, exited the ship onto Narendra Station and promptly disappeared. There’s a lot that does not make sense here; hopefully Lieutenant Zepht and his team will get to the bottom of this quickly.Executive Officer’s Log: Stardate, 48198.3
Plot: When Captain Adred resigns his commission and disappears in the middle of the night, the crew suspects foul play. However, their mission must continue, as they deliver supplies to a remote station, under a strict new commanding officer.
Prologue: The U.S.S. Minotaur is pursuing a small trading vessel in the Brukkea system, catching up rapidly with her prey. The executive officer calls Captain Konin to the bridge, informing him that the ship is within range. Ordering a communications channel opened to the ship, he introduces himself, ordering the trader to stand down and prepare to be boarded. The operator of the other vessel protests his innocence, then offers to share some of his profit with Konin. The captain is not impressed and orders the vessel to be tractored, its occupant to be beamed into the brig, and a boarding party arranged.
Later, in the interrogation room, the prisoner again protests his innocence, then tries to improve on his offer. Konin retorts that he should not be trying to bribe a Starfleet officer, but realises that the prisoner is actually more scared of someone else. An intercom call from the bridge interrupts his thoughts, and he returns to his ready room to receive a call from Vice Admiral Hebert. She informs him that she has a problem with the commander of Lexington and would appreciate Konin’s taking command of the bigger ship for the foreseeable future.
The ‘A’ Plot: Three days earlier on Lexington, still docked at Narendra Station, Zepht arrives for his shift and is asked by Commander Zohir if he has seen the captain. Zepht has not, although he is usually on the bridge before him. Further enquiries are made, and when there is no response, the door on Adred’s cabin is overridden. The room is empty of occupant and possessions, except for a single PADD containing a simple resignation letter.
Agreeing with Zepht that the captain is unlikely to have just resigned, Zohir informs Hebert and organises a meeting of the senior officers. Briefing them on Adred’s resignation message, he asks them not to inform the crew as yet, and instructs Zepht to lead an investigation into the disappearance. Commander Murphy meanwhile, initiates a search of the station, although the missing Trill is not found.
Over the next few days, Zepht, with the assistance of Lt (jg) Selvek and Dr Conners, establishes some facts about the case. Video records show that Adred left the ship around 2 am, but there is no activity in the corridor outside his rooms around the time he would have left. He is visible in footage from the main corridor, but not the side passage he entered it from, as if he appeared out of thin air as he rounded the corner. The guard on the main gangway is seen to have greeted the captain as he left, but he has no memory of seeing him specifically. Station security has a record of him exiting the ship, but then loses track of him as he enters the Galleria. Oddly, the computer continues to report that, while the captain is not on the ship, he has never left it.
Doctor Conners’s scans indicate that the commanding officer’s quarters have been cleaned thoroughly, leaving no trace of any DNA; though this would be normal between one occupant and the next. Selvek is asked to check the records from the replicator to see if the captain’s comm badge had been recycled, but discovers the device’s records have been erased from about 10 the previous night until about 6 the following morning. Zepht, meanwhile, realises that some of the footage in the videos is faked: it looks like maybe the captain came from a different point in the main corridor, but this was overwritten later.
Three days after the disappearance, the U.S.S. Minotaur arrives at the station, and Captain Konin beams across. He is met by the Admiral, who fills him on what has transpired so far before escorting him to Lexington. They meet with Commander Zohir, then Konin is introduced as the new C.O. to his senior officers and command codes are transferred.
His first task is to put the ship back into some semblance of normal service, so he orders Zepht to continue his investigation around his normal duties, while they undertake a delivery mission. Murphy and his team will also continue the investigation back on Narendra Station.
The ‘B’ Plot: Lexington, under her new commanding officer, is assigned to deliver scientific instruments to Epsilon 19, a new research station in the Osarin system. Deciding he needs to know how his new crew will perform under pressure, Konin rearranges their shift pattern and begins running various drills as they travel. Once they arrive, the equipment is transported to the station, while the captain and his senior officers are invited for dinner and a tour by Commander Johanssen. Lexington, meanwhile, departs to make close-up sensor scans of the star.
At dinner, they discover that Johanssen has other guests, the Orion captain E’loruul and her bodyguards, a pair of Nausicaans. Doctor Mosa briefs them about the station’s research into the peculiar nature of Osarin, which is losing brightness at an increasing rate. Johanssen spends most of his time in deep conversation with E’loruul, who has brought gifts and is requesting permission to bring her crew aboard for recreation. Apparently her ship’s drive is damaged, but when Selvek offers to help with the repairs, she demurs, claiming that he would have difficulty with the peculiarities of Orion technology. Johanssen accedes to her request, despite Zepht’s reservations; as a Denobulan, he is aware that Orion pheromones are present and suspects that E’loruul is using them to influence the commander.
Following the meal, the away team are taken on a tour of the station, but while they are in the core elevator, the entire structure shudders as the power goes off. Moments later, there is a muffled explosion and the elevator plummets several decks before grinding to a halt, leaving several of them badly bruised. Selvek determines that the only way out will be through the emergency hatch on the ceiling, so Konin organises their climb out on to the access ladder.
They separate, Zepht and Selvek heading down to the engineering deck to try and restore power, while Konin, Conners and D’ghov head up towards the flames flickering around the access to the command deck.
Then the ladder gives way beneath Konin’s feet, separating him from his companions…
The ‘C’ Plot: On the morning of Adred’s disappearance, the U.S.S. Thunderchild arrives at the station. Lt (jg) Selvek disembarks and heads across the docking bay to the Lexington gangway, identifying himself to the guard. Lt Zepht is sent to meet him, learning that he is the ship’s new chief engineer, despite his relative youth. After he meets Commander Zohir, Zepht gives Selvek a brief tour, explaining the situation, and giving him the chance to apply his engineering talents to the investigation.
The Arc: Given the timing, it seems likely that Captain Adred’s disappearance is related to his revealing his knowledge of the events experienced by his previous host.
Observations: Captain Konin, the new commanding officer, is an old friend of Vice-Admiral Hebert, with over five decades’ history in Starfleet. He has a reputation as a stern but effective commander.
Lt (jg) Selvek has been appointed as engineering department head on Lexington, despite being only a few years out of the Academy.
Dialogue: Captain Adred’s resignation: “Given the current situation, I have no choice but to resign my commission and return to civilian life, effective immediately.”
Questions: Were the Orions responsible for the explosion? And what did happen to Captain Adred?