Matt's Personal Log - Episode 33

Well, I can honestly say that I don’t know if things turned out good or bad. After figuring out a way into the submerged temple, I found myself in a hallway that was filled with pillars (hallway is a cute turn of phrase for an area that turned out to be roughly 100 meters wide and over 1600 meters long – for you imperialists, that’s 100 yards wide and a mile long). A quick look around the entrance netted me a roll of manuscripts that were luckily in an alcove and higher than the initial inrush of water that my entrance allowed.

Since I wasn’t feeling entirely safe, I decided to take the time to dry out my pistol; it had been kinda sparking and making weird noises, and I didn’t entirely trust my well-being to it. By the time I had gotten it all sorted, I heard the now-familiar hum of a transporter. FIrst to arrive was Karr and a Vulcan Starfleet officer, Lt. Tana Filara. In short order, an entire team transported their way in (which I did consider cheating). All told, the team included Alyr, Thanos, and Becky. On the Starfleet side of things, the additional members were Lt. Cmdr. Kyra Ilsa (Bajoran), Lt. Cmdr. Mae’valla Talyn (Andorian), Lt. Cmdr. Kelly Spritz (Vulcan), Lt. Tom Knox (Human), and Lt. Lysia Haynes (Bolian). Jo had been left behind on the Starfleet shuttle to monitor things and man the transporter should it be needed (though I wouldn’t want to be the one she transported first – she’s never been entirely comfortable around the things).

Lt. Haynes was the young Lieutenant I had argued with (vociferously) about the other ship back at the Isle of Three Smokes, and I took the earliest moment I could to apologize to her about my actions. As I said in my last log entry, I don’t know what had overcome me but I intend to make an effort to stay in control of my actions. The Starfleet group seemed to take my apology in good stride, and the two groups were soon working together – if not as a well-oiled machine, at least as though we were meant for the same job.

Tana had managed to find another set of manuscripts in a pillar – using her tricorder of course (more cheating). Since they did seem to match the style of those I had found, and since I do intend to try and turn the corner of my atrocious behaviour recently – I added the ones I had found to the pile. We weren’t able to decipher any of the language on the pages, but the imagery was quite provacative. In them I saw images that reminded me of the things the group had told me Eight was hunting; the tales of skittering nightmares Alyr sometimes speaks about in his less sober moments; and even the Mojorans that apparently abducted me and my original team seemed to be located in those pages. One image especially haunts me – a skull-faced ape-like creature clutching a flute seems to pluck at my memories but I cannot seem to place it at all.

Eventually we arrived at a doorway at the far end of the Hall of Pillars. It opened upon a stairway descending yet again; the heat and humidity issuing forth was incredibly oppressive, to the point that I grew somewhat dizzy as we continued down. The room we arrived in was a four-sided pyramid, which coincidentally matched the dimensions of the Great Pyramid of Giza. It apparently also matched a Great Pyramid of Bajor, Betazed, and Vulcan as well – I guess the Iconians got around.

Karr had detected some sort of energy source emanating from this room but we were unable to find anything to verify his readings. We were still searching when we got a call from the Nelson – apparently they were under attack (probably the same vessel that had chased off our own ships), and they managed to send us an image of the attacker. It was a ship nearly 30 kilometers in length – impressive despite its lack of ergonomic qualities. Before we knew it, writing on the floor of the chamber we were in lit up – we were all backing away as more and more rings of writing lit up, and then the apex of the pyramid started to open. Before more than a few hundred gallons of ocean could spill in, a blinding columb on energy speared skyward, instantly vaporizing the water. The pyramid closed and we all sat recovering our eyesight.

The Nelson hailed us again, demanding to know what had happened. We of course had no idea, but we were told that the attacking vessel as well as two others had been obliterated. Since we didn’t know what had happened or what had triggered it, it was suggested that the Nelson leave the system until we could determine her safety. There may have been more to the conversation, but I suddenly grew nauseated, and proceeded to heave in utter agony for several minutes (at the time it seemed like hours).

After a short rest, we continued to explore and eventually found another chamber. This was again a pyramid-shaped room, though much smaller. Under its apex was a smaller pyramid set in the floor which turned out to be a control panel of sorts. From it, Tom was able to download some data, written in Ancient Greek of all things, which Ilsa was, even more surprisingly, able to translate. We had found an historical record of an entirely new species! So far I have only had a perfunctory glance at the information, but I believe the information contains an even more thorough description of the planet in the Gamma Quadrant which may hold the secrets of the Templar Order that we seek (not to mention the treasure).

Since we had access to a computer tied into the temple’s systems, and since the temple obviously had defenses capable of firing at ships in orbit, Tom and Karr tried to gain access to the temple’s sensor system by hacking their way into the computer. Tom quickly proved to be more adept that Karr with computers and he soon had a view of the planet’s orbit – or so we thought. His stunned look was the first sign of something being amiss, and his words that we were currently in deep space must have put that same look on all of our faces. He was even able to say that we were somewhere in the Gamma Quadrant, though he was unable to pinpoint our coordinates.

Unfortunately, his words were soon confirmed by a hail from Jo giving us the same news – that the ship, the temple, and a whole lot of ocean had suddenly appeared in deep space, killing all of the crew but Paizu, who had apparently used his bubble of air trick again and ‘swam’ to the temple before he could die. Evidently, the ‘temple’ we were in was in actuality an ancient spaceworthy vessel of some sort. I left the rest to sort that out while I made my way back through the Hall of Pillars to the original spot I entered the vessel. Jo anchored the shuttle there, and with extended shields, managed to create a makeshift airlock for us to use.

Ilsa agreed with my idea to use the shuttle to find the bridge of this vessel (which was a hell of a lot bigger than we first thought). A short while later we found it and transported over. The scale of the bridge was immense! I mean to say, the ceiling was in darkness, and possibly a hundred feet over our heads, if not higher. Karr, Tom, and Tana were all using their tricorders (didn’t think of it as cheating this time), but the scale of the room was so immense that we couldn’t find anything; the perspective was too off for us to comprehend. It was as though we had walked onto the bridge of a ship used by the Nephilim, or the Greek Titans if we were to match the analogy to the language in the computer. An analogy that proved more likely when we discovered that a mound of what we had originally thought of as debris turned out in fact to be the mummified remains of a man – a man that happened to be roughly 18 meters tall.

My initial reaction was to just sit down – nevermind that I was sitting on the ’man’s’ jaw. The sheer scope of what I was seeing, what we had just discovered, was overcoming me. Then the next thing I knew was Karr had managed to reach the consoles that were 12 meters overhead; next to follow were Mae’vallah and Alyr. I was in conversation with Tana regarding the giant we had discovered – she had just confirmed that the being had likely been genetically created, and was not a natural creature – when gun shots rang out.

I first dove for cover, and then I realized that Mae’vallah was the only person among our group that was carrying a rifle (with underslung grenade launcher) no less. Unfortunately, the action was happening 12 meters above the rest of us; I wasn’t able to get into the action but it was all over shortly. Mae’vallah had been attacked by some form of bio-engineered weapon and needed to receive immediate medical attention. Kelly saw to that and ‘beamed’ (that’s a new term I’ve just learned that Starfleet uses for being transported) back to the shuttle and its medical facilities.

The next thing we knew, Tom (who had stayed on the shuttle) hailed us to say another trio of ships was closing in on us. Before we could even react, another beam of energy lanced out of the ship and destroyed the oncoming attackers. We were still figuring out what had happened when I was overcome with another bout of sickness – though this time I was limited to dry-heaving. By the time I had recovered, Tom had managed to determine that we were no longer in the Gamma Quadrant, and that we were now in the Delta Quadrant.

As a group, we decided that we should get some rest and continue our explorations later. Most went to the shuttle to get some rest, but Tana decided to poke around a little longer and I figured I’d stay and get some sleep in the bridge (that way I’d be in the area if Tana needed some help).

I don’t know how long I’d been asleep when I heard someone beaming in; I woke and drew my pistol but it was only Karr and Alyr. Before I could ask them what was going on, four Andorian Amazons beamed in, followed by their captain who turned out to be Eight. (You may have noticed I haven’t been using the term ‘Crazy’ for her – that’s because she really doesn’t like it.) Eight and her crew were hunting spiders – just like in the manuscripts – and it was basically a case of don’t get in her way and she wouldn’t get in ours. Worked for me – I was more concerned with finding the ship’s pop-box, ‘cause I was convinced that there was one aboard. Had to be, since I don’t know of any other way to bounce around the galaxy like that.

Some time later, I still hadn’t found it, but we were all recalled to the shuttle. Tom had discovered that something called an ion storm was headed our way, and it was massive. Everyone else looked concerned – I didn’t know enough to be frightened. Everyone was back except for Alyr, so Tom decided to beam him back; he set the transporters to scan for a Human and beamed away (or should it be ‘in’?). ‘Course, he’d forgotten about Eight – and that Alyr isn’t technically Human. I managed to tackle Eight and calm her down before she could do anything, well, crazy. I helped her to her feet and everything seemed fine, but then she sorta freaked out and ran screaming from the shuttle. I immediately followed her, ’cause anything that freaked her out would have probably freaked me out if I had any idea what it was.

When I caught up to her at the bottom of the stairs, she looked at me and said one word… SPIDER. I don’t know what it was, but my gut told me it had to be Mae’vallah. So I called her and asked her to join me and Eight. By the time she arrived, I had my gun drawn but I really didn’t know what I was going to do. When Mae’vallah arrived, I ‘heard’ (sensed?) a voice in my head saying to ‘Kill the Bitch’ – I had no idea which of the two the voice was referring to so I said ‘no’. By that time, Eight had pounced and driven her pick-hook into Mae’s forehead. I made a quick decision and shot Mae (on stun), and allowed Eight to do her work. To my complete and utter surprise, she pulled a spider-like thing out of Mae’s head, which burst into flames nearly immediately but not fast enough that I didn’t recognize that it matched some of the images on the manuscripts we had collected.

I managed to keep Mae alive and get her back to the shuttle where Kelly took over the medical duties. I told the rest what had just happened, and was met with a mixture of surprise and matter-of-factness, depending on whether the listener was my crew or Starfleet. to everyone’s surprise, Ilsa seemed to know Eight, and called her Janice. Eight denied being Janice, but did seem to know and recognize Ilsa. Who knows where that’s going to lead? Eight left to hunt for more spiders and, even though the ion storm was almost upon us, Alyr followed Eight out. Karr, Tom, and I set about trying to bolster the shuttle’s shields in order to better weather the storm – we obviously managed to do so, since I’m writing this log.

To be honest, since the attack on Mae’vallah I’ve stayed close to her; I guess I feel kind of guilty for ambushing her like that, even if it does mean that she was saved. Thanos mentioned that, according to the coordinates we seemed to be at, he knew of a nearby station/casino that we could travel to. With his and Karr’s help I was able to tap into the pop-box on the temple/ship – I might not have been able to find it, but it was there and we had access to the navigation and propulsion systems. Since Thanos’s casino station was a lot closer than Citadel, we’ve gone there. Alyr, Becky, and Paizu have taken off on their own to do some sight-seeing and training, apparently. We’re just about to arrive in the system where this casino is, and I’m looking forward to having some time to fully peruse all of the data we’ve discovered.

Somewhere out there, I hope, is the Glory and the rest of my friends; I need to find them. I’ve also made a promise to the officers here that I will get them back to a Starfleet base if I can, and if they can’t make it on their own. I think Tana, and perhaps Mae’vallah, have been bitten by the discovery bug though, and may want to stick around to see this through to the end (that might be wishful thinking on my part). I guess I’ll find out soon enough. For now though, some drinks and R&R are in order.

Matt's Personal Log - Episode 33

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