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The Price of Freedom, Part One
The Bombing

(Operations, the next day. Ames, Hawkins, and T'Lyt are having a conversation as Solvek walks in.)

Operations <Deck 8> [Gibraltar Station]

This room is the heart of Starbase 247, from which all systems can be controlled. The room is circular, with a ring of consoles centered on a lowered "pit." This area is dominated by a circular table which typically employs versatile and highly realistic holograms to create a cylindrical viewscreen. The entire area of space outside the station can be seen at once, or it can focus on a particular sector. There is also capability to project single images for communications or complex reports.

Several consoles are arranged in a ring 3 meters from the central viewing area, with three breaks for stairs leading to the pit. One arc is given over to a command console which faces the viewer as well as the door to the corridor. To the right of this station (if one is facing the viewer) is an arc which is shared by the Tactical and Sensor consoles; to the left is an arc shared by Navigational Control and Communications. All of these stations are arranged so that one may easily see the central viewer and are outfitted with tan chairs. Within the pit are four consoles set up against two of the cherrywood arcs so that one sitting at them must turn to see the central viewer. Engineering and Operations face Tactical and Sensors, while Environmental Control and Mission Operations face Nav Control and Communications. The space below the command station is clear. Each arc sits atop a lighted pedestal, as does each shared console in the pit.

The outer walls are broken by three doors, each spaced in line with a set of stairs. Besides the door to the corridor there is one to the ready room and one to the head. Behind the command station is a standard viewscreen which can project whatever image the commander so wishes. The master systems displays for the command section and various modules are behind the tactical/sensor arc, while the MSD for the spacedock is behind the last. The floor is carpeted in gray trimmed with light tan. Lighting is provided by panels placed along the join between walls and ceiling.

Rose Ames
Gwen Hawkins

Ames smiles faintly as she looks up at T'Lyt, "Perhaps most of the time, Lieutenant." She leans back in her chair at the command station, addressing the Captain, "Would you like the conn, sir?"

T'Lyt turns, eyebrow still arched. "However, it is a human's ability to make a leap of intuition, unguided by logic, that is his or her strength. It would be illogical to not applaud the strength of a species, sir," she replies to the Captain.

Hawkins nods in reply to Ames, and looks to T'Lyt. "Intuition doesn't hold up in court, Lieutenant, not unless it is guided by logic to something a little more concrete. What most other races think of as intuition is actually just irrational thinking that gets lucky. True intuition is guided by, but goes beyond logic."

T'Lyt's eyebrow arches up. "I did not say that humans are incapable of logic. Indeed, I've met humans who are quite logical, when they have need of it. Still, I believe that a human's intuitive abilities cannot be ignored. There are many times that intuition can and does defeat logic -- just as the opposite is true," she adds.

Ames stands up from the command station, moving over towards the science station, "An interesting viewpoint, Lieutenant, and one that is quite true." She taps at the science console, "Of course, as a great man once said, 'logic is the beginning of wisdom, not the end.'"

Solvek looks at the T'lyt, "I believe that the Captain, in this case, is correct. My experience as her Executive Officer has shown me that she has a capable working knowledge of the inner functions and uses of both intuition and logic. However, as my knowledge of this conversation is limited, I will allow my comment to be disregarded if it has no pretense."

T'Lyt nods to Ames' words, saying "Logic is merely the beginning of wisdom, not its completion. It is one of the many teachings of Surak." Looking then, at Solvek, she nods again. "The principles of Infinite Diversity dictate that logic and intuition, although seemingly mutually exclusive, do work well in tandem. There is a reason that more and more crews aboard Starfleet ships carry mixed-species crews, in particular a mixture of Vulcans and humans."

Hawkins glances over to Solvek, tilting her head a bit. "Not going to argue with me, for once?" She leans over the command station a bit. "In my experience, logic without intuition leads one to dead ends, and intuition without logic leads to jumping off cliffs hoping you can learn to fly on the way down. They're not mutually exclusive at all. They are neccesary to each other and, working in tandem, especially within one mind, can accomplish much more than either can alone. I wish more people understood that." The words have a familiar feel, as if she's had this conversation before. Which she likely has. She sits down, tapping at the consle. "At any rate. How is the base faring this evening?"

Ames smiles at that, "Base is operating at optimal capacity, ma'am. It's been an incredibly quiet day. Only thing of note is a signal from the freighter Freedom's Star that she has suffered a severe systems failure, and is en route under minimal power for repairs."

Solvek walks over and takes a seat at the empty Mission Operations console. He taps a few buttons and looks at the screen, nodding slightly.

Turning to her console, T'Lyt goes back to what she was doing -- working on cargo manifests. Commander Ames handled the report, after all, and the conversation seems to have come to a logical conclusion.

Hawkins nods to Ames. "Excellent, Commander. I like quiet. I hope the Freedom's Star has suffered no casualties?"

"Two runabouts have been dispatched to assist the Freedom's Star, sir," T'Lyt reports. "Two engineering details and a medical team."

Ames sits down at science, "No deaths, but a dozen injured, at least two severely so, sir. Approximate ETA is two days, twelve hours, forty minutes." A few quick taps at the console, "She sent her cargo manifest to us, so we could be prepared, sir. We might want to step up security for her arrival and stay... she's carrying a significant load of dilithium crystals."

"I will coordinate with security for appropriate cargo-handling measures," T'Lyt says. Then she arches a brow at taps at her console. "There is a power surge on Deck 37..."

There's a low rumble from somewhere far below Operations, a shifting of the deck.

Ames looks up at T'Lyt, then down at her console, quickly scanning the data, "Try and reroute the excess power to oth..." She glances up at the rumbling, then says, "So much for the quiet day... running an internal scan.."

Solvek straightens from the console and calls, "Yellow Alert," in a calm, carrying voice.

The Vulcan ops officer starts moving over her console as she starts rerouting power... then T'Lyt says, "Another surge, in the docking bay. Attempting to reroute power to mitigate deleterious effects."

Over Hawkins's compin you hear, "Omtala to Hawkins"

Ames looks up, "I am reading smoke on Deck 37, despite significant amounts of damage to internal sensors on that deck. It is likely caused by a fire of some kind. Recommend we dispatch damage control and medical personnel to the region, Captain."

The lights shift to yellow just before another rumble, this time from above. It's louder, and the deck shifts more.

Hawkins is sitting, fortunately, and holds on to her console as the deck shifts. Thank God for that. "Damage control and medical to Deck 37, aye, and where was that from? The docking bay?"

A soft whine, first audible only to Vulcan ears (or the like) slowly builds in volume. "There is a power surge in Ops," T'Lyt says. "Solvek, please assist with power redistribution. I am only just able to prevent explosions in the primary Cargo B--" That's when the console "explodes" in her face, leaving her limp and unconscious with some obvious burns on her face and hands.

Hawkins taps her compin, and it emits a high chirp.

Hawkins says, "Hawkins here."

Ames holds onto her console as the deck shifts, "There have been explosions in the docking bay, Captain. Internal sensors are reading heavy damage to the USS Cambric, and she has been ripped from her moorings." She taps at the console, "Dispatching damage control teams..."

From over a compin, you hear Omtala say, "Captain, I've got main Sickbay setting up for triage. Commander Volchenkov is here with me."

Solvek stands up, anger and confusion evident on his face. "Was there any evidence of shots being fired at the base?"

"Aye. We have injuries up here as well. Dispatch teams to Deck 37 and the docking bay. Volchenkov, security teams to both, and get up to Operations on the double." Hawkins frowns down at her console. "Cloaked ships out there? Anything?"

Ames looks to Solvek, tapping at her console, "No evidence of external influences, sir. It appears to have been caused internally - potentially a malfunction.." She taps, trying to double-check her initial hypothesis.

Solvek sits at his console his fingers flying over the buttons. "I am taking over the task of rerouting system power. What is the status of the decks involved, can we get any communication from them?"

Ames taps at the console, then suddenly stops, "Commander... we're reading heavy damage to the Antarean embassy, with some damage to areas nearby. Docking bay doors are non-functional and appear to be blocked, and we have hull breaches on decks 36, 37, and 38, along with breaches in the docking bay. Emergency forcefields are holding."

From over a compin: Omtala gives a nod to Volchenkov and looks to the door as her assistant comes in. "Just the person I wanted to see. I want you at the docking level." Looking to no one in particular, her voice raises to speak to the comsystem. "I'm sending Lieutenant Thompson to the docking level with a medical team. Morales. Thirtysix, set up primary triage in the ampitheatre. I'm in route for thirtyseven."

Hawkins taps her compin, and it emits a low chirp.

Hawkins nods to Ames, frowning down at her console. "Have you been able to track down the source of the malfunction? And you say both docking bay doors are blocked?"

Volchenkov comes through the door from Central Corridor <Deck 8>.
Volchenkov has arrived.

Ames keeps tappity-tap-tapping at her console, "Aye, ma'am." She pauses, thinking for a few moments, then looks up, "The timing and placement of these... incidents.. seems unusual, ma'am. The odds of malfunctions occuring near similtaeneously in areas divided by over thirty decks is.. small, to say the least. I believe we should consider the potential that this is sabotage, sir."

Operations has escaped the worst of the damage, except for a malfunctioning Operations console, over which is draped an unconscious Vulcan Operations officer, who is being treated by a medic. Ames is at Science, Hawkins at the command console, and Solvek is busy re-routing power and coordinating repair teams.

Hawkins nods. "You could be right, Commander. Lock down the station. Essential personnel only to the affected areas, and send out a warning to ships less than a day out that they may have to divert. Do we have any idea on casualty levels?"

Stepping into Operations, and looking like he's been running most of the way from Sickbay, Volchenkov looks around for a few seconds, before making his way further into the room. "Security teams have been dispatched, Captain," he reports.

Simmons comes through the door from Central Corridor <Deck 8>.
Simmons has arrived.

Simmons walks into Operations un a hurried manner, a slightly confused look on his face, and a rushed and wrinkled uniform on. He glances around quickly, trying to find someone who knows what is going on.

Ames taps at the console, doing another internal scan, leaving the other personnel in Ops to send out the messages, as she stands up and heads over to the security console, tapping at it to initiate the security lockdown, "The Antarean embassy is showing minimal lifesigns. Unless she was empty at the time of the incident, I am estimating between twenty and thirty dead in that area. The Cambric is reporting heavy casualties, with a minimum of forty crew dead onboard her. External sensors are reporting approximately half a dozen corpses that were drawn out of the station before emergency forcefields activated. Other areas are still reporting, sir."

The Captain looks up at Ames for a moment, shock apparent on her face. She clears her throat and quickly gets a hold of herself. "Aye." She turns to Volchenkov as he enters. "Commander. Ms. Ames here has pointed out this has the potential to be sabotage and I'm inclined to agree with her. As of this moment you have full authority to conduct an investigation into what the hell just happened and why. Who, what, how, all of it. We're locking down the station until further notice, and I want security patrols doubled until we have some idea of what's going on. Any questions, or requests?"

Volchenkov nods a little as he hears that, frowning a bit as he hears what's being said. He turns to the Captain, shaking his head, "No questions yet, sir," he replies. Glancing around for a few moments longer, before he reaches for his compin to quietly give the orders about the doubled patrols to the security officers.

Ames taps at the security console some more, "Security lockdown has been initiated, ma'am. I've designated essential personnel as able to move through the security blocks that have been activated." She sighs quietly, turning to look at the Captain.

Hawkins reaches up to pinch at the bridge of her nose. "Excellent. Thank you, Commander. I'm calling a meeting of all senior staff in half an hour. Volchenkov, do what you can in that time with the preliminary sensor reports. For now I want this treated as an attack, with more possible coming. I'm sure you all know what to do."

Simmons stands near the back listening to the reports coming up and orders going out. He tries to piece together whats going on. "Hull breeches, sabatouge, damaged embassy, many dead..." he thinks to himself.

Volchenkov nods a little as he makes his way over to start trying to figure out what those sensor reports can tell about what really happened. Frowning a bit to himself as he works.

Solvek looks up from his console, his expression has calmed into the norm of complacency. "I have succesfully rerouted all power systems to compensate for the damaged relays, sir. By my calculations and the approximations of those wounded and dead it will take several days for the station to be fully repaired and at optimum operational capabilites."

Volchenkov continues working rather quietly, frowning once in a while as his eyes keeps on watching those sensor reports.

Hawkins informs the other senior officers of the meeting and then looks around. "I'll be in the Observation Lounge once everyone is ready." With that, she stands and heads out, walking briskly.

Hawkins leaves through the door toward Central Corridor <Deck 8>>.
Hawkins has left.

Simmons watches from back, now turning to an auxillary console and checking over status reports, still trying to find out exactly what is happening.

Solvek watches as the Captain leaves. "I shall also be in the Observation Lounge. If there is any change in the current situation, contact me."

Solvek leaves through the door toward Central Corridor <Deck 8>.
Solvek has left.

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