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[Requested Remove] Operation: Armada de Vitor

Started by Raius, September 23, 2020, 10:27:05 PM

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Raius

Stardate 97729.3
Undocumented Mountain Range
Undocumented Continent
Marrakand
Undocumented Solar System
Undocumented Sector
Large Magellanic Cloud 

A jet black moustache wiggles below the optical lens of a large mobile refracting telescope, a cold polar breeze whispering around Captain Marcantonio's gilded armor, barely visible under a billowing black trench coat and frosted knee-high boots.

"There!", he barks and hurriedly points to the night sky, slightly rattling the telescope, and the tripod that it stood on. The rest of the team around him shake their heads, almost in unison, albeit still writing down notes of the "point" that was being pointing to. It comes as quickly as it goes. Invisible, not due to something hidden or else in another space-time, but that nothing was actually there...yet. A place for...something. A communications relay, most likely. The solar system had yet to be named or explored. What was the being of this planet, past, present, future, neighbors, friends, fiends, what was the balance of terror in this small & ancient corner?

The team began to pack their things, and head out to a different location. The last one for the evening. The Terran Equinox had yet to be celebrated.

Raius

#1
Captain Marcantonio stood at a wooden podium, esoteric symbols of Terran deep history carved throughout; dim light created a faint glow of the bronze, gold, and silver presented throughout the massive stadium. This, a crossing of thresholds, a declaration, reorganization, announcement, in that order. It would be difficult for some, sacrifices were made every day for survival now, but this was different...a sacrifice beyond the present moment or the moment thereafter.

Captain Raius Marcantonio de la Vega, Esq., Paramount of Marrakand, Master of the Order of the Green Flame, Forger of the Terran Will, spoke succinctly.
"Captains Log complemental, Stardate 97947.25...", most of the stadium audience gently chuckled, as did the Captain before regaining his signature frown, "Comrades, we verily greet this day. Our colony grows as much as our resurgence, supplies continue to increase, and this dead world is reborn in our image, and in the image of our Creator. We stand here today, ever nearing our destiny", he peers out, examining the thousands before him, "...look around you...all you see, this place, our new order, would not have been possible without the collective effort of all present, and those not. To the assembled, and to those attending to duties elsewhere on our world, I could not have asked for a better unity.", the assembled applause while remaining seated, echoed by those pausing elsewhere for the live audio feed, "As we know all to well, however, time is an ever-tightening grip on those who do not seize the day; no matter how pious we are in this life, it is material and of temporal matters...one that requires regeneration against entropy. Our infrastructure, and those of our predecessors, will make great winds in our sails to see us to the horizon and beyond.", the Captain sighs before taking the plunge, "Many of you may reckon where this speech is heading...I have been considering our options for many days and nights, almost since we first awoke from our slumber. Upon final review with my senior staff, I have taken it upon myself to organize Project: Count Table. To expedite the state of the project, I am ordering a medical review pertaining to the state of our fertility. Male and Female shall both be examined, in the alphabetic order of their names. After reviews are concluded and passed, Counselors and various Medical specialists will advise matching. If and when matches are successful, courting will be guided by Chaplains, who will officiate mass weddings shortly thereafter. After this initial process concludes, Females will be given 12 months of shore leave, be honorably discharged from Imperial Starfleet thereafter, if they so desire, and be inducted into the Order of the Fruitful; Males will be commendated and assigned familial quarters throughout constructed and explored areas. Report to your sector's Medical Headquarters A.S.A.P. to begin evaluation. If you do not pass the initial review, you are to have your PADD authenticated by your sector's Chief Medical Officer, and report to my office. There is need of those who have only themselves to give for our Empire. Dismissed!"

The stadium soon emptied, leaving Marcantonio to momentarily contemplate what had been detected on planetary sensors. A key to the stars, for sure, and a handful to get into shipshape. He swiftly headed to his offices, although upon completion they were closer to a luxury loft than a mere workspace.

Raius

#2
Stardate: 98032.08
Wright's Triumph Mountain Range
Northwestern Continent
Marrakand IV
Marrakand System
Marrakand Sector
Large Magellanic Cloud

One Meter.

That's all the facility roof was able to open. More than enough for a small team to scout whatever lay within, but it was less climactic than the Paramount had anticipated.

He led a small team, 5 women, 2 men, and a brave Akita, who began as the sun rose above the dormant volcano summit turned abandoned outpost that they were preparing to investigate; 2 Engineering, 1 Medical, 3 Science, 2 Security, 1 Tactical, in total, and the unknown ship that lay below.  The armor plating was bone-chilling, just as the air below the opened doors; it would be much easier to think on this without so much snow.

"How long has this been here?", asked Marcantonio. Lieutenant Jameson answered first, "I'd say about 70 years, sir...", before she continued, the team, canine included, bowed their heads for a moment of silence. "No Terran lifesigns aboard, sir. Recommend we send a probe to the nearest deck.", "Agreed.", stated Marcantonio, "...but cloaked. We don't know what's down there.", "Sir!", Jameson briefly snapped to attention and assembled a small probe, while the rest of the team began to construct a miniature heat shield to melt the snow away, and the Akita stood guard, periodically perking his ears at the occasional distant predator.

"This is a saucer...", Marcantonio spoke under his breath to himself, reasonably away from the rest of the team, "...the dimensions of this facility...a facility exclusively used for the maintenance this vessel over all others. Why this one?" The thought crossed his mind when the sensors picked it up, but it was fleeting. His luck could not be that bountiful...surely it could not. Could it not?

The heat shield started to hum, slowly being moved towards where the registration would be. The snow, over a few minutes, melted away. Number by number. Letter by letter.

I.S.S. Barracuda
NCC-1958

Ensign Jonathan exclaimed, "Sir, the Barracuda!". Captain Marcantonio was overtaken by emotion, dropped to his knees, and prayed. Things were...on his side. Long Live the Empire, indeed.

Raius

#3
SPORT IS OUR FOUNDATION

That's at least what was inscribed on the corridor adjacent wall, within the Barracuda gymnasium. Captain Marcantonio was in his recreational robe, but he wasn't of any leisure, not in this moment; inventory didn't account for itself, and a lot needed to be replaced after decades of disuse. "Sandbags, Weights, various resistances, Gyrowhatevers...", he was very tired, but this was the last task for his forty-eight hour day, his first in the Constitution-class Captain's Quarters, a worthy reward. The past two days had been spent securing the saucer, laying the dead to rest, reactivating necessary auxiliary power, cleaning off dirt/dust, and sealing off the rest of the ship until more personnel could be brought over.

He glanced at the inscription before nodding at it, and calmly walked to his "new" Quarters. A bit spartan when compared to his Tkon derived office-space, but a world away from his cabin before the coup incident. His evening routine, abbreviated; hygiene, a change of clothes, music, a bit of stretching, some short chants, hydration, and then to bed. He planned on take better stock of the Bridge when everything else was checked off for the week. Thoughts for later, now it was time for rest.

Raius

#4
Barracuda Drydock Facility
Wright's Triumph Mountain Range
Northwestern Continent
Marrakand IV
Marrakand System
Marrakand Sector
Large Magellanic Cloud

An ice storm blew through the shipyard, rattling the Barracuda in place. While the exterior of the ship was frozen over, the interior was only uncomfortably cool, mood lighting from the Blue Alert status notwithstanding; Auxiliary power had to be rationed, as the Secondary Hull had yet to be unsealed...until today.  A squad of 10 Guardsmen, opting for a subtler route than usual, traversed maintenance shafts down the hull neck...slowly...surely...the briefing went as planned, but beneath the bronze & ivory sheen of their C.Q.C. Armor, everyone could tell that something was unusual; as they swept one deck after the other, the disorganization of components, large and small, gradually increased. "We've reached the final bulkhead.", stated Engineering Specialist Grover Fitzgerald, "We've been diverting Auxiliary to the Secondary Hull since any power has been restored...beyond this point, the temperature and humidity is identical to the conditions around the ship, pressurize yourselves and activate your reserves, and watch for clear ice.", the nine other Guardsmen pressed several buttons on their wrist panels before Fitzgerald did likewise, closed the bulkhead behind them, and prepared to open the one ahead, "four, three, two, one, go!". Attached flashlights clicked on from Type II Pistols, shining on the walls and around corners. For a few moments nothing expected was seen, but momentarily thereafter, there was a yelp from a junior Guardsman. "Ma'am!, you'll want to see this.", the most seasoned Guardsmen, one Commander Nina Rawson, directed the squad to the commotion, and she was not disappointed, "By the Creator!", she exclaimed, "...all these warriors fighting each other like animals, and all for nothing.". The scene was interesting, to say the least, Terrans frozen solid mid-fight; likely given to savagery as supplies began to run low, and as disagreement escalated to hostility escalated to (near) fratricide. "Call Medical and Science teams down here; if they're all like this, we won't have an immediate problem. This room is secured, continue the sweep as assigned.". The squad continued their assigned tasks, room by room & deck by deck, tens, dozens, almost one-hundred frozen; either in combat, in shock, or waiting for the opportunity to strike. All the same until the squad reached Main Engineering...which looked less dissimilar to an ice cave than anything technological, it more than likely appeared so due to the entire Power Assembly being long ejected and crashed onto the platform below the ship. Commander Rawson barked, "Fitzgerald, prepare this place for operation. Everyone else with me, we're dropping below.", the nine Guardsmen assembled their Ascension/Descension gear as the tenth inspected tattered bells and whistles. Commander Rawson grimaced under her helmet as she made out a warped panel, amongst severely contorted metallic debris, bearing the acronym D-A.S.H.D., "...like dust in the wind.".

A few minutes later, Captain Marcantonio was in the Medbay, assisting with sorting out those who could be revived, and those who could not. He paused for a moment, "Captains Log, Stardate 98179.22..."

Raius

#5
Barracuda Drydock Facility
Wright's Triumph Mountain Range
Northwestern Continent
Marrakand IV
Marrakand System
Marrakand Sector
Large Magellanic Cloud

Captain Marcantonio sat contemplatively on the Bridge, staring at the inactive viewscreen & humming consoles, "Captains Log, Stardate 98207.39. I am glad to say that our fusion cores are operational, and we've begun directing more power away from auxiliary. Weapons power seems to have come to the top of our list, surprisingly not due to any destructive wishes but to slowly melt the ice off of the hull...their pulses of red will turn the air around this ship into a warm mist; perhaps the deserving Shuttlebay personnel will be privy to a bit of a shower, hmm? 0, then 10, then 20, then 30, then 40, then 60, and then finally 70 degrees Celsius, over 60 minutes, starting in approximately minus six and a half hours. I've brought more Engineering staff over to this most graceful lady to begin preparations for possible flight, and to hold her together as we bring Impulse and Thrusters online. As for recovery the Jump Drive...it cannot be rebuilt with the components at hand, likely due to sabotage, but it is quite salvageable; the data on this Mycelial Network will prove invaluable as we rebuild her, in orbit. Construction of a Control-class Starbase has begun, where we intend to do most of our oncoming work. No irregularities have been detected in the system, and the weather tomorrow appears to be ideal for flight. Creator, guide us.". He leaned back, closed his eyes for a moment, made his way down to the Captain's Yacht for a change of pace & for a good vantage point in the morning.

Raius

#6
The drill had been ongoing for almost 40 minutes, at first more technical, but slowly and surely ideological.
"Who wields the vorpal sword?!" barked Marcantonio at three dozen cadets; they answered in a similar volume, "Mother Terra!".
He continued to drill them, "Who is Mother Terra?!"; "All her people, many bound into one!", the cadets answered.
"What happens when her people loosen the bindings and bicker amongst each other?!".
"The one is shattered!"
"The one is shattered, indeed, but we are the strongest of all the pieces. The world below us, the vessel at this station & the vessels to be at this station, the ones you may well serve on, will tighten our bindings once more. Dismissed!"

He stared at the Barracuda, E.V. Suits bouncing around the exterior with various tools, protected by the just-activated shielding of Marrakand Control, with two frames of the Hernandez-class in the back ground.
"Creator, guide us..."

Raius

#7
Captain Marcantonio strode around the Arboretum, once filled with examples of Terran life, now temporarily void of such things.
Captain's Log, Stardate 98389.57
"Every day, we creep forwards a little more. Bit by bit, she comes to life again. The process has weighed on me, greatly; much more than I would admit to anyone I've been destined to lead, here. I cannot break. Thousands upon thousands rely on me, I cannot break. Command, Operations, Sciences, deciding on design and accommodation priorities, the final decision is with me...70/15/15 I reckon, we've more than enough technology to cover the imbalance...the T'Kon, apparently they have representatives..."Portals", quite the esoteric title. I am sure we can find wherever this being is located; compilations will begin in the morning. We've discovered this much, we will discover much more.
...
...Discovery...
...We will not break."

Raius

#8
Tkon Arcology #187-021
Unnamed Glacier Valley
Northwestern Continent
Marrakand IV
Marrakand System
Marrakand Sector
Large Magellanic Cloud

Captain Marcantonio walked, by himself, through a long & long abandoned passageway. All of the compiled information had pointed to this region, although, since they evaded remote tracking, he had decided to take it upon himself to locate this "Portal"; surely, they would have been activated by now, with all of the local activity.

The frost cracked and crackled under his boots, the cold breeze around him overwhelmed by an eerie silence. One cautious step after another, each as much as the last. He the hunter, or the huntee? Certainly neither predator nor prey, as far as he could admit to himself.

Minutes felt like hours, hours felt like days. More and more he sensed something simultaneously coming towards him, and him towards it. He had found it, and it had found him.

"Terran...", the Portal bellowed from above, around, below, besides, within, without, "...you have sought my counsel, my guidance, my knowledge. You think you are deserving of these things? The knowledge of this forgotten outpost of a lost Empire? Your people have trampled all under foot, Andorian, Ba'ul, Orion, Klingon, and so many others. They have extinguished those who call themselves Human, in your timeline. Even amongst yourselves, you bicker, you hate, you scheme. What is such a record to ours? The Tkon, mere eclipsing rivals to the Dominion and the Whole, only defeated by malevolence from beyond. What are we to you, and you to us?" The Portal coalesced behind the Paramount and leaned on its staff; it was programmed with certain archetypes in mind, but also purposefully feigning frailty.

Raius turned around, slowly, starring intensely at the Portal, "My people have been twisted by circumstances, by the rage they found themselves surrounded by. The Humans...they corrupt this timeline as they attempted to corrupt the one of my birth. They have succeeded in this one, but where I come from they have not. Righteous Judgement bars none."

The Portal responded bluntly, "Religion...fully understood, and yet impenetrable. We have gone around such things to bring ourselves to our heights. Perhaps...you will be different. Tell me, do you seek to better this place & to better yourself for it?"

Raius nodded, "I do, and we do. The thousands that now call this place their home, they rally to my cause. My cause being the righting of our people. Many have tried in our past; Sargon, Cyrus, Caesar, Charlemagne, Suleiman, Suharto, Singh, and many others that still cause terror in the hearts of the Federation, so many years after their fall. All have fallen to one thing or another. One thing none of them had was these resources. A ready-made planet to settle, and a fallen Empire to help build our new foundation. To right our ways, for good."

"Bring me to your ship, let me interface with it. If your intentions are true, it will...how does the phrase go, "Speak Softly, and carry a Big Stick."?

Raius wobbled upon layers of ice, towards the Portal, "Aye.", he flipped open his communicator, barely hiding a wide grin, "Two to beam up."

They'd momentarily find themselves settling into the Type C Shuttle Buffalo Soldier, and getting underway, with two pilots, to return to the I.S.S. Barracuda.  4 days of travel (at safe velocities). The Portal soon turned to standby-mode, and the senior pilot retiring for something similar. Raius took the controls, the junior pilot still a bit green to be relied upon entirely.

A reminder-of-sorts was written just ahead of the two seats.
TERRA FIRMA

BLTrrn

Marrakand Control
Marrakand IV
Marrakand System
Marrakand Sector
Large Magellanic Cloud

"Captain's Log 100209.05, I could've sworn that I made a few entries after my return to Marrakand...but no matter; 12 months of shaking-down the Barracuda, a necessary but wild ride. Let's see...more armor, more efficient engines, torpedoes, medical facilities, and the Mycelial Drive purrs like-you-wouldn't-believe. Tkon Portal #187-021 is now fully integrated into the Main Computer, and last-but-not-least, Marrakand Control is now fully operational and in a G.E.O.; as I speak-to-text this, preparations are underway for the official proclamation of the Marrakand Terran Empire, but only after we've established significant communications to make almost-first contact with this...Khitomer Alliance. I know that they may not react well to our style, or that we could possibly wield a near neck-of-the-woods, but they are our best hope of survival. We cannot make it alone; we have to reach out to be reached out to."

Marcantonio rubbed the bridge of his nose and settled down for a quick nap before duties came up on him, again.

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