Saturday, February 11, 2012

Mass Effect: Olympus - 06



16:30 Hours - September 9 - 2194

Dai was already through the elevator hatch before it had already slid open.  After a long trip through several corridors, many interruptions to deal with the significant number of complications involved with running a brand new ship (let alone a ship of such considerable size) she had finally made it to the hangar deck.  She was not too much delayed, the trip would have taken her a bit of time anyway given the length of the trip, but she was aggravated by this minor delay all the same.

Her conversation with Topri Von had been troubling.  Though he hadn't said much, what he did say had Dai wondering just who had assigned him to this ship and why.  If he was an analyst, of any kind, he was likely associated with sensitive topics of information, and she had been specifically informed that the high brass, and especially Intelligence leaders, didn't want the alien members of her crew attached to anything that might be considered sensitive.  Yet now there was a volus claiming to be an analyst, and being frustratingly vague about it to boot.

"What's the problem?"  Dai asked, as she entered the hangar.  Karl was already there, surrounded by the deck chief and a Lieutenant who looked as if he hadn't slept in three days.  Given the busy schedule lately, that seemed likely.

Karl looked relieved to see the Captain, and he immediately turned her direction.  "You should take a look at the supply crates we just got, Captain."

Dai gave him a questioning look, but the big man just raised his eyebrows with a "you'll see" expression, and motioned to her right.  Suppressing a frustrated growl, Dai turned and followed where he indicated, led by the tired Lieutenant and the nervous deck chief.

"We haven't touched 'em, ma'am," the deck chief was saying as they walked.  "They showed up like this, and I called the Lieutenant, and now here we are."

"Don't worry..." Dai looked back at him questioningly.

"Service Chief Felden, ma'am," he supplied.

"Chief Felden.  I'm sure everything is in order as far as you and your crew are concerned.  Now what happened?"

"Well they got shot up, ma'am," the chief said, and as they rounded a group of high-stacked cargo containers, Dai saw the chief meant exactly that.  A set of cargo containers, surrounded by curious deck personnel who quickly either snapped to attention or dispersed at the sight of their commanding officer, had clearly been riddled with small arms fire.  Heavy gouges were dug in from several angles, and many direct hits could be seen, there were even a few scorch marks from apparent explosions, either missiles or grenades she couldn't tell.

"Harbor security claims they don't know how it happened, Captain," the weary Lieutenant supplied, in an equally weary voice.  "They do have an incident report of gunfire in the temporary holding bay last night.  No arrests, no conclusion, but I'd guess whatever happened was right around our containers.  Harbor sent these up on the last shuttle, probably hoping we wouldn't notice in the rush.  Almost didn't."

"Whatever happened to these containers didn't happen around them, it involved them specifically," Dai added, walking around the most heavily damaged container.  "These aren't stray shots, whoever had the guns was shooting directly at the container."  She ran a hand across the bullet-ridden surface, wondering exactly what happened.  "What's in here?  Actually, I should probably ask, what's supposed to be in here?"  She exchanged a look with Karl, who appeared equally concerned.

"Generator parts, Captain," the Lieutenant replied.  "Nothing vital, just backup equipment."

"Open it," Dai stepped back, motioning to the container with her arms.  Karl stepped to her side.

"Shouldn't we have a security detail here?"  He asked quietly.

"Not if it's what I think it is," she replied.  "I think we have a stow-away, with trouble attached."

"That's exactly my point, Captain."

"We'll be fine," Dai said, holding a hand out.  She just hoped she was right about that part.

By then, the chief had organized three nearby gawking deck personnel into a work detail, and they had the side of the container unlocked.  With one last grind of metal and the sound of sliding support bars, the container slid open.  Boxes of parts were stacked high, large and small.  Nestled within them, tucked between to of the larger boxes near the side of the container, was a quarian male.  Just beyond him, the crumpled form of a human male.  Both men had been shot multiple times, and were laying in a pool equal parts human blood, quarian blood, and fluids from the quarian's environment suit.

Amid the exclamations of shock from the crew, the quarian raised his head almost imperceptibly.  Seeing a group of humans staring at him in mixed parts shock and horror, he raised one hand weakly in their direction.  It looked like he was trying to speak, judging from the faint flickering of light at the front of his helmet, but he never managed to get out any words.  Instead, his head slowly slumped back down, and his hand dropped to the floor of the container, resting in the puddle beneath the two mean.

"Med-bay.  Now."  Dai commanded, her voice heavy with authority and adrenaline.  The Lieutenant, weary as he was, had already left for the nearest comm unit.  Both Dai and Karl approached the canister.  Dai waved back several deck crew who had moved forward to help.  "No, don't touch them," she ordered.  "The quarian's suit is ruptured, we could kill him."

"Medical emergency, medical emergency!  Trauma team to forward hangar two!"  The Lieutenant's voice no longer sounded tired, as the shock of the sight in the container sent everyone's adrenaline skyrocketing.

Karl and the deck chief kept watch, and even ordered nearby personnel to cordon off the area.  Dai walked gingerly into the container, stepping carefully over a box and past the legs of the quarian, careful not to disturb anything.  Looking them over, it seemed that both men were still breathing.

"Welcome to the Olympus," she said with a sigh.  "Hang in there, boys."

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This is a work of fan fiction, intended for the amusement of myself and those reading it.  I am in no way affiliated with Bioware, Electronic Arts, or anyone else who has any official say over the Mass Effect franchise.

Also!  This work is an effort by yours truly to force myself to write 1,000 words of fiction each and every single day.  Without exception.  It isn't planned, or plotted, or pre-thought, I literally pull this stuff from my ass.  The quality of writing may reflect that origin.

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