USS VINDEX - NCC-2474-A
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Fifteen Minutes?

Posted on Mon Jan 9th, 2017 @ 3:12am by Commander Tolan & Lieutenant JG Annie Wilson & Lieutenant No Name

Mission: S1E3 - Operation Adrestia
Location: Gavara IV
Timeline: Mission Day 18; 04:15

Tolan had prepared for his mission with quiet efficiency. He had told Kazyah via a message that he required the services of Catalina for an away mission - he'd received no response so the Suliban assumed that there were no objections. He had chosen Lieutenant Wilson as the pilot for the Horsa and was pleased to find the two security officers he requested to remain with the craft along with Annie were there before he was and waiting patiently.

After instructing the two officers to board the Horsa to ensure the equipment for the mission was all present Tolan waited patiently for the arrival of Catalina and Annie.

Cat showed up wearing what looked like her standard duty uniform and carrying a case which was about two feet long, six inches deep and a foot wide. She had a belt around her waist that had a small black disk where a belt buckle would be and an arm back of a smaller black disk on her right arm. "Lieutenant Ghatto, reporting for the mission," she said.

Tolan smiled. "Good morning Lieutenant - glad to see you've come prepared. Do you have experience driving a land vehicle? We'll be using it considering the landing site we've chosen is a fair distance away to avoid detection"

"What kind of land vehicle?" Cat asked. "Wheeled or tracked?"

"We'll be using the Horsa's buggy - so wheeled. The design we're stealing is apparently tracked but nothing concrete - I was rather hoping we could persuade the Captain to let us build one if it's viable and we have the resources to do it" Tolan replied.

With a cup of tea in her hand, Annie yawned as she entered the shuttle bay, nodding to Tolan and Catalina as she walked past them and straight into the runabout. The sooner this was done, the sooner she could go back to bed, or at least Annie hoped she was be allowed to go back to bed.

Cat gave a nod to the Lieutenant that just came in and looked back at Tolan. "I can do that," she said. "Although it may be a bumpy ride. I haven't done it since the Academy."

Tolan chuckled. "I think we'll manage. Let's go"

Tolan led them aboard the Horsa and then closed the door behind them. Whilst Annie conducted her final pre-flight checks Tolan did some checks of his own to make sure the buggy was ready to go when they got to the surface. To save weight as well as reduce the buggy's profile Tolan had asked for the mounted phaser cannon to be removed - which it had been. Even so Tolan made sure that himself and Catalina were well equipped to defend themselves if the need arose - although he hoped it wouldn't. Even so the Suliban had brought along his treasured d'k tahg - just in case.

"Are we ready to go Lieutenant Wilson?" Tolan asked.

"Yes Commander," Annie said. "I'm powering up now, and setting course for the landing site you gave me. Is it the same one, or has the plan changed since we talked last night?"

Tolan shook his head - but he appreciate Annie making sure.

"The plan is still the same. Just try and make our approach as erratic as you can - especially if we want to look like an asteroid. On the way back we'll give you advance notice so you can take off as soon as the rear door closes and we've strapped the buggy down" Tolan replied.

"Understood, Commander." Annie replied, then turning her attention to taking off.

Once she was settled in to her seat, Cat opened the case and pulled out two long belts and handed one to Tolan and one to the female Lieutenant. They were two millimeters thick and two wide and long enough to fit around most waits and had a tiny black disk for the buckle. "These are anti-sensor belts with decoy units, but they only have a range of about three meters," she told them.

She went back into the case and pulled out a disk that was ten centimeters in diameter and four centimeters thick. "Computer jammer if we need it," she explained. Next, she pulled out a tricorder that was nine centimeters by six point five by two centimeters, detached a ring from it and put it on her right ring finger. "Intelligence tricorder," she said with a wink. Finally, she pulled out a small cylinder three millimeters long and one millimeter in diameter. "And this is a Neural Recorder in case we get a prisoner who doesn't want to talk. He doesn't have to with this. I have drones and surveillance devices once we get down and figure out our approach."

"You're very thorough Miss Ghatto. What do you say Miss Wilson - fancy coming along for a ride? The more eyes we have the better and I'm sure these two gentlemen won't mind looking after the Horsa for us for half an hour or so" Tolan said.

"Sure," Annie replied. "Why not? As long as you've got enough room for me in the front, I don't do back seat driving."

"I almost forgot," Cat added as she reached back into the case and pulled out three pair of nondescript gloves and handed a pair to each of them. "Stun gloves. They only have three settings; light, medium and heavy stun and have forty charges."

"Now I really like those. Thank you Lieutenant" Tolan said.

He accepted the offered gloves and placed them in his small holdall which also contained his d'k tahg and the other apparatus that had already been handed out.

"Is it cold on Gavara IV?" Annie said, hoping to add some humour to the situation.

Tolan shook his head.

"It isn't - there's only two seasons which are spring and summer. It's probably better I go on the back of the buggy anyway so I can get a better view with my binoculars for navigation purposes. I'm afraid we'll be running with minimal lighting to lower the risk of detection" Tolan replied.

Cat pulled a PADD out and began going through the cultural database of Gavara IV and found the section on clothing that the inhabitants worse. She reached to the left cuff of her uniform and pulled out a thin cable to connect to the PADD and tapped the screen of the PADD. A minute later, her uniform changed to that of a female Gavaran's outfit and she disconnected the cable and put the PADD back down. "I love mnemonic clothing," she said.

"I bet you do. I just wish sometimes I had the enhancements some of my ancestors but I guess that would have prevented me from joining Starfleet in the first place. As I'm Suliban I might attract a bit more attention but I think we can cope with it - and by the time we get there'll be about 04:35 in the morning. Miss Wilson - prepare to take us out of warp and engage the erratic flight plan" Tolan ordered.

"Yes sir." Annie said, doing as she was asked.




The Horsa had landed in its designated landing site without being detected. Tolan had unstrapped the buggy and made sure he and everyone else had everything they needed before he climbed into the back of the buggy.

Cat got up from her seat and went back with her case to get in the buggy. She secured the case and put her other tools on her belt before she powered the buggy up and ran her eyes over the controls.

Annie got into the front and strapped herself in, throwing her bag into the foot well.

After checking the map he downloaded onto his PADD he informed Catalina of their journey plan.

"The destination is about a mile away from here. There's a rise we can hide the buggy behind and then it's about a 50 metre walk away from there to the entry point. There are a few turns along the way but I'm relaying the map on my PADD to the console in the cabin" Tolan said.

He mounted his binoculars onto a strap around his civilian clothing and raised them to check their surroundings - for now at least the coast was clear and nothing was showing up in thermal mode.

"It looks clear from here. Proceed down the road to your left Miss Ghatto...I'll keep watch from up here" Tolan instructed.

"Can do," Cat said and after she checked that everyone was secured, she engaged the buggy and tore out of the runabout as if it were about to blow up, veered sharply to the left and pulled back right, then roared down the left road.

Annie clung on for dear life, clenching the frame above and to the side of her.

"Can you go any faster, Catalina?" Annie said.

"Faster?" Cat said with a laugh as she saw the look on the woman's face. "I can do that." With that said, she floored the accelerator and the buggy leapt forward as if she had engaged warp.

Tolan kept a watchful eye out on the road ahead and to the sides - thankfully because it was the early hours of the morning it was very unlikely they would be seen. He just hoped that they were out of the base and off the planet before the sun came up - giving them no more than about an hour to do what they had to do and get back to the Vindex.

"Just to warn you I've found out sunrise is in about an hour - ideally we need to be heading back to the ship by then. I just hope the other team got the message..." Tolan said.

"That would depend on the mission outcome," Cat asked as she kept her eyes on the road.




After the buggy was parked safely away from view the trio made their way towards the entry point which was usually used for deliveries of supplies. There was a guard standing by the door and Tolan's binoculars revealed he was the only one in range.

"I'll take him out and then we'll head in - but I'll need you to distract him for me" Tolan said.

Annie nodded, thinking of an idea to do that already.

"I have an idea in mind, you wait here." Annie said, looking at Catalina and then walking towards the base.

"What's that?" Cat asked, but the woman was already out and walked.

Tolan quickly found a hiding place in a bush where he hoped he could jump out and silence the guard long enough for them to open the door to get inside before anyone came by.

Annie casually walked up to the guard and suggestively gestured for him to come over to her, purposefully stood by the bush Tolan was hiding in. The guard then slowly walked over to her with interest and a grin on his face, it wasn't what Annie usually did, but it was a sure fire way to get the guard's attention.

Cat got out of the buggy and checked her phaser, then deployed a couple remote surveillance drones and linked them to her tricorder and sent the tiny devices ahead of them. "Great plan. Thanks for letting me in on that. Anytime."

Tolan jumped out of the bush facing the guard and before he could react the Suliban headbutted the guard who fell to the ground unconscious. He then dragged the man into the bush and stole his commbadge which he hoped would allow them to enter without trying to break any codes.

"This should be useful. Thanks" Tolan whispered.

He then stood and waited for Catalina to catch up with them.

Cat came up to where they were and knelt down after pulling out something that looked like a stylus and put it behind the downed guard's ear. A moment later, she pulled back and attached it to her tricorder and waited a minute. "Looks like mister guard here had access codes that we'll need. Now for one more thing."

She reached into her case and pulled out something clear and the size of the pad on her thumb, applied it to the right one and then touched it to the guard's thumb for a second. "There we go," she said. "Now I have his bio-pattern as well if we need it."

Tolan smiled. "Excellent. I also have his commbadge which should come in useful - let's get inside before they notice he's gone"

Tolan lead the way to the door and gestured for Catalina to open it with the thumbprint she had obtained - holding the commbadge close to the thumbprint reader.

Cat stepped up to the door pad after she closed her case and brought it with her, then applied her thumb to it while looking at her tricorder. A second later, the door clicked and she stepped back. "Open sesame!"

Tolan took his knife out of his holdall and placed it securely into his belt before leading the way and using his PADD to navigate around the facility. It was very quiet so far but that wasn't always a good thing.

"Alright...we've got six biosigns behind the door we need to go through to get to the main computer room - we need to take them our or at least bring it level before we go through it. Ideas?" Tolan whispered.

Cat manipulated her tricorder and a smooth-edged disk nine centimeters in diameter and two point five centimeters thick flew up to them. She made a calibration and smiled at Tolan. "Get this door open just a crack, then close it again," she said. "The tracking drone has a Type I phaser on it and I set it to heavy stun."

Tolan grinned and led the way - slowly approaching the door. Once he was there he waited for Catalina before quietly opening the door less than half a centimetre.

"Now" Tolan whispered.

"A bit more," Cat whispered back. "They're two and a half centimeters thick."

Tolan edged the door open again a little further - hoping they weren't seen through the gap.

As she sent the drone in, Cat focused on her tricorder to control the drone and took out target after target. "We should be good to go," she said.

Tolan then closed the door and waited for about ten seconds before opening it again - with his d'k tahg raised just in case. Once he confirmed all six of the guards were out for the count he gestured to the two women to come into the corridor and then pointed at a door.

"We want to go in there. There's two people in there...I'll take the furthest way - Annie you take the closest one. Catalina...we'll give you as long as we can with the computer" Tolan instructed.

Annie nodded, removing her phaser from the inside pocket of her jacket, setting it to stun.

Cat smiled and put her tricorder on her belt and got her phaser ready. When the door opened, she went in and fired at the remaining guard while the other woman took out the first. "I really need to program that drone better," she muttered.




Once the guards had been incapacitated Tolan stood guard at the door with his trusty knife and a tricorder to detect any people who may be approaching and give them time to prepare or hide. The Suliban then spotted a free and unlocked console facing the door and decided to do something useful himself.

"I estimate we can give you about ten or fifteen minutes maximum to break into that computer and steal those plans before they notice something's wrong Lieutenant. I'm going to attempt to create a gap in the sensor grid for about twelve hours' time so we can come in with the Vindex and fighters undetected" Tolan said.

"Fifteen minutes?" Cat asked as if he had told her that she only had three days. "I got this." She went up to the computer and set the jammer down beside of it without activating it and pulled her tricorder back out. She connected it to the computer and began to work it with her fingers before she looked up. "Give me ten more seconds," she said. "They tried to booby trap it."

Tolan worked at his console before confirming that he'd given the Vindex a gap of half an hour between 16:00 and 16:30 to get in undetected - although there was the case of the Alwanir in orbit which would still have functioning sensors.

"I chose wisely in my choice of Intelligence officer. Get as much as you can from it - the more we have the better" Tolan instructed.

"Can do," Cat said as she finished disabling the virus that the Gavaran's or whoever had put into the computer. A few minutes later, she disconnected the tricorder and looked up at the man. "Did do. I also introduced a little bug of my own into the system." She picked up the jammer and put it under the desk before she activated it and watched as it blended into the material. "Now for a little jamming fun. Let's roll."

"You two go on ahead. I'm going to infiltrate that nuclear power station and see if I can do some damage of my own - I think destroying it would be a massive mistake so if I can disable it or do enough damage we can reduce civilian casualties. Here - take these - I'll see you back on the Vindex. Catalina is in charge now" Tolan said.

Tolan passed Catalina his binoculars and the stolen combadge so they could escape unhindered. He planned to steal a runabout or similar from the landing pads - but he was determined to avoid civilian casualties at all costs. Before he could give either a chance to answer he ran out of the room and down the corridor.

"Okay, I guess we should get the hell out. I'll stand on the back of the buggy this time..." Annie commented, surprised at Tolan's sudden disappearance, but she guessed it was the right thing to do.

"Great," Cat muttered as she took the binoculars and put them on her belt as well. "How is he going to get back?" she asked as she headed out of the room after checking her tricorder again.

Annie shrugged, not sure herself. "I don't know, but I'm sure he'll find a way back to the ship, but we should leave now, I think I can hear voices."

"As long as they aren't in your head," Cat said as she led the way with her phaser out and the drone going ahead of them. The muffled hum of a phaser was heard and the sound of a body hitting the floor and Cat checked her tricorder. "The guard we put down woke up but just decided to take another nap. Let's get out of her."

With that, the young Intel operative ran out of the building and headed for where the buggy was, secured her case and started it up while waiting for the other woman to get secured.

Annie got into the buggy, standing on the back to watch out ahead, thinking about where Tolan was, hoping he would get back okay. Annie liked him, and planned to get to know the man better when they were back on the ship.

This time instead of waiting to be asked if the buggy could go faster, Cat fired it up and sent it back towards the shuttle at full speed, veering around corners on almost two wheels and a seeming complete disregard for safety. Less than two minutes after she had started it, she pulled back into the shuttle. "Fire this puppy up while I secure the buggy," she said. "I have a nasty feeling we'll have company in less than thirty minutes."

Annie did as she was asked, almost jumping from the back of the buggy and running up to the flight control station. After a few moments, they were ready to go, as long as the buggy was strapped down first.

"Is the buggy secure?" Annie asked, "I'm going if it is!"

Cat put the last lock in place and made her way to the cockpit. "Locked and loaded," she said. "Let's blow this popsicle stand!"

Annie engaged the shuttle's engines, and once they were high enough, set a course back to the ship as fast as the shuttle could go.

"That was fun, let's do it again sometime..." Annie said, just as the shuttle left the atmosphere and she engaged the warp drive.

 

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