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Mission Briefing

Posted on 18 Mar 2019 @ 1:34pm by Captain Abigail Rhodes & Commander Gerald Wainwright III & Lieutenant Commander Atven Dantarno & Lieutenant Merux Lex & Lieutenant Gabriel Walker & Lieutenant Astrid Jurgen & Lieutenant Damian Bukowski & Lieutenant Pippa Faust & Lieutenant Azoroth Nightscale

Mission: Gremlins
Location: Conference Room
Timeline: Mission Day One


"Thank you, Admiral.  That sounds like an excellent first mission.  Miller out."  Abby closed the channel and reflected on the information the Admiral just gave her.  In truth, she could have easily visited the Admiral's office on the starbase.  But Admiral Petrovitch had indicated a need for efficiency, and the simplicity of the mission didn't really warrant much more than a call.  Abby had to agree.  Their first mission would be a cakewalk, honestly.  A bit disappointing, perhaps, but it would give them a chance to stretch the Mark Miller's systems.

Abby sent a message to her Department Heads regarding a Mission Briefing for an hour hence.  She wanted to get under way as soon as possible, but also allow her senior staff to finish their current projects.  She, herself, needed to prepare for the meeting by finishing her coffee and re-reviewing the mission data.  The Admiral had sent over a detailed report on the mission parameters which she read on a PADD while walking to the conference room a couple doors down on the port forward area of Deck 1.  Without even looking up, she entered the room and sat at the head of the table, waiting for the others to arrive.

Gabe entered, his PaDD in one hand and a large mug of a breakfast blend tea in the other.  He glanced around the room, taking in what he could before taking a seat in the area opposite the doors, where he could see both easily.  "Captain," he said by way of greeting before putting his PaDD down, then his mug.  He spent some moments making sure both were correctly positioned while he waited for the meeting to begin.

Time management anxiety on her side (this time), Pippa slipped through the doors shortly after Gabe. She laid eyes on Abby first, grinned, and with an awkward little wave, said, "Hi Captain." Then her gaze tracked over and she offered a smile to Gabe as well. "Lieutenant," she greeted before finding a seat. She brushed invisible dust off the table in front of her.

Merux arrived next, customary PADD in hand and exuding an air of smug satisfaction.  He gave the Captain the traditional verbal greeting as he found his seat to her left.  Simple eye contact and polite nods were offered to the others, after which he turned to his tablet, perusing his selections and pausing only to give greetings as appropriate as others arrived.

Gerry strode into the room, glancing around at some new faces and seeing a few he already knew. He hated not to get here before the rest of the department heads and silently chided himself for his tardiness.  Taking a seat to the right of the skipper, he subconsciously tugged at his uniform tunic as he sat. 

Gerry nodded to Captain Rhodes and looked around the room once more.

Astrid was next to arrive, walking through the doors while frowning at something on a PaDD held in front of her. Largely ignoring everyone else in the room she walked around the table to an empty chair, before pulling it back and seating herself. Putting the PaDD down on the table, she finally looked around the assembled senior staff before offering a quick nod to the Captain.

While not late, it seemed the others got here before him. Perhaps he was the last but at least he was not late. "Good day everyone." Lt Azoroth said to everyone as he nodded to the captain. He had not yet fully familiarized himself with the various levels of this ship. Something that he must do before too much longer.

With a mug of coffee in one hand and a PADD in another, Bukowski strode in and took a seat next to the first officer.

Waiting for the last half a minute to tick its way down, Dantarno grudgingly peeled himself away from the console at the back of the Miller's bridge, and ducked into the conference room almost exactly on time. It wasn't tardiness so much as distraction: ordinarily there was little for a helmsman to do until a starship embarked from dock, and so Dantarno had found things, diagnostics, calibrations, small projects, anything to maintain his sanity these last few days. Some had been mildly fascinating, while others were merely time-consuming, as was the case with the nav simulation he'd just been running. He'd hoped it would be finished before the briefing was due to start, but apparently not. He stifled a sigh, and scanned the room: an awful lot of Lieutenants; an awful lot of young faces. His gaze settled on Commander Wainright, and offered him a curt nod as he settled into one of the few remaining vacant seats. At least he wasn't the oldest person in the room.

Abby nodded to her officers as they came in, her professional demeanor on full.  She kept the acknowledgements brief, and identical to each.  As they took their chairs, she finished a few last-minute adjustments to what briefing materials she had available.  Then she smiled and took in the room.  "Thank you all for the prompt response.  I don't know if anyone has met, so..."  She went around the room and introduced everyone to everyone.  It was a brief moment, enough to attach a face to a name.

"But down to business," she said after a moment.  "Our first mission will be a gravy run.  Mostly data gathering, but we'll also have an opportunity to run the ship systems through some paces."  She tapped a few keys and a holo display came up over the middle of the table with two planetary bodies unnaturally close to one another.  "We're here at an opportune time.  About fifteen light years away there's a system in which we have an imminent planetary collision.  The fourth planet is an E-class rocky planet, about 50% larger than Earth.  The second is a small D-class dwarf.  We're to observe the colission at close range and take in as much data as we can.  Now, once the smaller planet crosses the Roche Limit of the larger, it will start to break up, producing a cloud of rocky shrapnel.  That'll give the shields a workout, and we'll have some targets for the weapons.  Between all that and keeping optimum safe scanning distance, we should be able to give the M&M a good test run."
"Captain," Gabe said, turning his chair to the head of the table.  "I would prefer we make sure to test the weapons systems prior to the collision.  I'd rather not find out that variance we discussed exists when I'm trying to protect the ship from chunks of planet.  Also, I'd like for stellar sciences to do mockups of what we can expect in order to test computer models of the shields."

"We'll need to be in-system before we can start doing that, right?" Dantarno chimed in, glancing across the table at the blue and gold shirts the Captain had identified as Science and Operations. "We'll need comprehensive scans of that dwarf's internal structure before we can run simulations like that with any accuracy. If we park ourselves here -" He reached out, gesturing to the appropriate location on the graphical representation. "- above the plane of the solar system and angled down, we should be relatively clear of the fragmentation debris as gravity pulls it into orbit. We can kick back, replicate up some popcorn, and enjoy the show."

Abby nodded to the two men.  "The initial threat will only be from small targets that wouldn't cause much damage anyhow.  When the planet starts breaking up, it'll initialy just crack open and gravity-sling some smaller boulders to the side, which will be an optimum test.  A few minutes later it'll start to break up more fully and then we'd have to be more careful.  Commander Dantarno's suggestion is a good one.  We can come in, take some initial detailed scans to model the likely breakup pattern, then park ourselves in a nice viewing location.  All in all, from the begining of the breakup to impact, it'll be eight minutes.  The planet will still be largely intact, and the ejecta plume should be spectacular."

"Will we have a chance to try out the new impulse and warp engine configurations? I'm intrigued to say the least," Gerry leaned forward, his fingers breaking the tent under his chin and his eyes beginning to beam.

Astrid realised now would probably be a good time to chip in. "Yes," she replied, "and also no."  The looks from around the table told her more information was likely needed. "While the new configurations are in place, we've been told to keep power usage down to around seventy-five to eighty percent until everything is properly bedded in. So while they'll be in use, I doubt we'll notice much difference over a standard setup for this mission."

"Starfleet tends to be a bit conservative on those limits," Abby added, "they tend to forget the ferry flight.  But, while we did break in the warp core a bit during the months-long cruise to get out here, I'd rather not anger the boffins on Mars."  She grinned to her XO, "That all said, if an... emergency situation warrants, I'm sure we'll have a chance to stretch her legs a bit."

"Emergency, got it. Let's all hope that doesn't happen," Gerry grinned wide as he finished his response. 

"I'm just going to say it now," Atven chimed in, with a small smile of his own. "If something goes wrong with these fancy new engine upgrades, I'm going to need someone to get out and push. I'm good, but I'm not evade the debris of a disintegrating planet using inertia and thrusters alone good."

The words made his brow furrow for a moment, a thought forming. "Though on the subject of fancy flying, we do have a Waverider strapped to the underside of our hull. She may be designed for atmospherics, which isn't something a Class D or E has all that much of, but if we need to get in closer for any reason, we'll have an easier time trying to dance around chunks of dying planet with a mouse than with an elephant." He glanced downwards, gently tapping the conference table as a proxy for the ship at large. "No offence," he muttered in apology, not wanting to ruffle the new ship's feathers. "With some tweaks and some sensor upgrades, the 'Rider may not be a bad Plan B."

Abby nodded in response, "Certainly a viable option.  There's the two Type-9s as well, though they're a bit more limited."  Describing the Miller as an "elephant" was a relative thing.  Compared to a Sovereign, between who's nacelles they could fit, the Miller was the mouse.  But the Waverider was another order of magnatude smaller.  "Let's prep the Waverider for potential launch, just in case we need it.  Hopefully we won't, but better to have it available if we do."

Merux had been perusing information on his tablet, and chose this time to finally add his two slips of latinum.  "This system is a bit off the beaten path.  It has no appreciable resources nor habitable worlds, and the nearest trade route is a considerable distance away.  We know the Admiral knows where we're going and when we're due back, but if something Bad happens and we need help, it won't be quick in coming."

"From what I've seen of the ship so far, we have enough redundancy in the systems to cope with a pretty high failure rate." Astrid offered, "It would take a lot to completely incapacitate us."

Abby nodded, "Yes, these modern ships are pretty hard to put down.  The Admiral did also assure me that the Zheng He will be operating relatively nearby.  They're cataloguing spatial anomalies a few light-years away, and can come to our aid in about half a day, in case things go pear-shaped.  All signs point to a rather routine shakedown run though."  She reflexively rapped upon the table, as if the action would cancel any self-induced jinx.

There didnt seem to be any additional input as she glanced around to her officers.  "If there's nothing else, let's get this show on the road.  Dismissed."

The party broke apart as casually as it had assembled, and she was okay with that.  An over-reliance on protocol and procedure tended to just get in the way.  Render proper respect, but otherwise, she didn't stand on ceremony.  She was the first to arrive, and was also the last to leave.  She followed the group to the Bridge where everyone assumed their stations, and Abby took her seat, her legs crossed at the ankle.  She pulled up the mission parameters on her armrest display and glanced around to see everyone already positioned.

"Commander Dantarno, take us out at your leisure."


Captain Abigail Rhodes
Commanding Officer

Commander Gerald Wainwright III
Executive Officer

Lieutenant Commander Atven Dantarno
Chief Flight Control Officer

Lieutenant Merux Lex
Chief Diplomatic Officer

Lieutenant Gabriel Walker
Chief Security/Tactical Officer

Lieutenant Astrd Jurgen
Chief Engineer

Lieutenant Damian Bukowski
Chief Operations Officer

Lieutenant Pippa Faust
Chief Medical Officer

Lieutenant Azoroth Nightscale
Chief Science Officer


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