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About OdileCondacin

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    Holder of the Scary Knife

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  1. Odile flinched as another console started to spark, then hissed as anti-inflammatory measures kicked in. What a grozing mess she had on her hands. She glared at one of the controls on the miserably-flickering display closest to Harper's chair, slightly mollified by the readout; that there were a few repairs underway was lovely, of course; she already knew that there were some things that were getting "fixed" -- their comm systems being the prime example -- and others which were in the process of being "fixed". The torpedo tube, for example. That was something they were "fixing". And it was something Odile was going to be very happy about once it indeed was fixed. In short, she was trying very hard to keep herself from thinking too hard about the fact that she was the ranking officer on Alpha bridge, and therefore, by some cruel stroke of divine* will, was at least de facto in command. Even though Harper and the cat were okay... even if they were out and unable to do colonel-like things, the current situation was terrifying. Odile wasn't entirely sure that she liked this whole "command of situation" thing. For if something went wrong -- which happened fairly regularly -- Odile would be help responsible. It did, after all, tend to turn out that way. What a lovely time for this calamity to strike, too. It wasn't like they could go unconscious on a quiet day. No no no. They had to choose the worst possible time to be knocked out. Now Odile was left with the joyous decision of whether or not to slink back and let Agincourt lick her wounds, or to charge into battle screaming foul oaths at the blue bastards. Odile, for reasons that to her seemed fairly obvious, had chosen the latter. After all, there were Starfleet ships out there that needed help as much as Agincourt, and by a bit of divine providence, they'd managed to stumble upon a weakness that could be exploited with the combined firepower of a few ships' torps and phaser arrays. Therefore, into the clusterjumble went Agincourt, even if Condacin expected there to be a few mumblings from various greasy-goldshirts later. After they survived, of course. With a tense sigh, she tried to sit back in The Chair, pretending for all the worlds like she belonged there. She really didn't, despite what all of those nasty people and the equally nasty deities kept trying to elbow her into. Officer commissions, promotions, and now this. Somewhere, she knew there was a dog-eared admiral who would be rather entertained once he heard of this. She also planned to have a stern talk with Harper about going unconscious in the middle of battles. That simply wouldn't do. And for that matter, she also planned to have an even longer talk with any potential Soltan captives they took, and explain exactly how much she liked being shot at. That would feel rather good. Assuming they lived, of course. That would also be a plus. * - As an OOC note, divine in this case may refer to the cruel, insidious whims of the gamemasters. They may choose to blame it on the gods if they so prefer.
  2. The shuttle dropped down onto the surface of the planet, and after it powered down, Odile made her way off of it. It really seemed like forever since she'd breathed air that hadn't been recycled two hundred times over; one got used ot it after awhile, but she still swore that it was possible to tell the difference. She nodded over to Ensign -- Holt, she thought was the name -- the boy from security who had apparently been waiting to rendezvous with her, then turned her looked up at the facility she'd "parked" next to. It looked like a typical research center; white brick and probably hermetically sound -- the kind of place that white labcoats went in and out of, and not much else. Had a good forcefield set up around it, too, she noted, glancing skyward as the bubble surged back into place. With Holt in tow, she made her way into the atrium of the facility, looking at bronzes adorning the walls while she waited for a tourguide of some kind. Wandering usually led to arrests, Odile had learned the hard way (on multiple occasions), so she employed "sense" (a much less common tactic), tucked her hands neatly behind her back as not to touch anything, and inspected the plaques curiously. They seemed fairly basic; silhouettes of the lead researchers the facility had boasted at one point or another in its thirty-year history. Fairly diverse bunch, too, though there was no surprise that the majority were seismologists and geophysicists of one sort or another. No one jumped out at Odile as particularly revolutionary or legendary -- but then again, she knew the basics of tectonics, and that was it. A geologist Odile was not. "Commander Condacin?" a tired, but firm voice greeted her, and she turned, smiling faintly at the face behind the voice. "That would be me, yes," she answered, offering a hand that was rather crushingly shaken. "You must be Doctor Santos." "Call me Isaak," he replied with a nod. "Please, come this way." Odile nodded as he activated a genetic scanner, allowing them into a sealed side corridor. "I apologize for not being available to greet you when you arrived. We weren't exactly expecting visitors -- especially in light of the calamity..." She shrugged. "Understandable. I suppose we should have alerted you to our plans to visit sooner. Though, I'm not sure we knew much earlier." Santos glanced sidelong at her for a moment, then frowned. "I'm not certain that I'm entirely understanding your reason for visiting this facility." An eyebrow arched. "Aside from it being triangulated as the epicenter of the first quake, you mean?" she asked, a bit rhetorically. "Our researchers are doing everything they can to determine the reason for that. I highly doubt it had anything to do with our work here." "Is that something you can elaborate on?" He shook his head slightly. "There really isn't much that you don't already know..." "Remind me," she answered, not intending it to sound as accusatory as it did. "We study the intermediate-depth earthquake that this planet's are associated with. Mostly we're concerned with whether or not they're affected by the subduction..." Odile nodded, waving off the scientistic to stop him before he began to babble. "And exactly how do you... study them?" "Deep-penetrating sonar... high EM scanners, electronic displacement waves. We just have some better equipment. That's all." He turned into a cavernous room, dominated by a huge machine that was sending out strong enough pulses that the room fairly shook from them. "Like this." "And this is, exactly?" She wrinkled her nose slightly, trying to make sense of the behemoth. "The most advanced seismic prediction technology of our day. It's actually been quite good at forecasting quakes -- until these last few." "Any idea why not?" He hesitated -- briefly -- then shook his head. "It's a mystery to us as well. If I knew... well, if I knew, I'd tell you." "Of course," she answered, moving a bit closer to the... thing... and frowning up at it. "I'm sure you noticed how... metered the energy was the quake put out." "Yes. We haven't been able to account for that," he answered shortly. "I see." She gave the predictor a last glance, heading back into the corridor. "You're researching the deeper end of "mid-focus" earthquakes, aren't you?" A hint of pride slipping through, he smiled slightly. "That's right," he answered. "Most research stations either study the shallow or deep ones -- and not a lot in between. Most planets are only troubled by slippage in the upper crust. Deep-focuses are mysterious, but this planet gave us a rare opportunity to see something in the middle that was still valuable." "Hmm. That would require quite a bit of energy, wouldn't it?" Odile mused, veering towards the next major-looking door. He paused for a moment, seeming a bit off-put by her questioning -- and the fact that she was taking out her tricorder when the door wouldn't open. "Not really, no. We use efficient technology. Now, was that all, Lieutenant Commander?" She knew she was being nosy. She didn't particularly care. "Is this off-limits?" she inquired, releasing the tricorder back to her hip and gesturing to the door. "It's restricted." Santos hesitated for a moment. "It was affected by the quake -- some radioactive material was spilled during one of the aftershocks." "Ah. That would explain the lack of readings from this," Condacin commented, patting the scanner at her hip. "Oh. Yes." He nodded, then glanced to a group of scientists that emerged from another door at the end of the hall. "Well, Commander, I thank you for your visit, but we have new data to process -- perhaps you can come back later?" He smiled, but his tone was edging towards "cold" and far from welcoming. "Of course. I wouldn't wish to intrude." She returned the smile, even if it did look pained. "Good luck."
  3. Things were going boom. Well, not "boom", exactly. "Shake" and "crash", maybe. Maybe even "clunk". Now, to be sure, earthquakes were moderately common on tectonically active planets -- and a fair share of ones that were not. However, even though Odile wasn't a geologist she was loosely aware of the fact that large-scale earthquakes were verging on "common" as well. But multiples along unconnected faults? Now that was odd. Her gut reaction -- well, second -- was "weapon". It wouldn't be a horrible shock to her if the Soltans had found some awful way to exploit seismic disaster to their advantage. It would be just crafty enough for a few other species, too, if they wanted to start playing nasty and take advantage of the Federation when it was down. Odile frankly wouldn't put it past the Rest of the Universe. Well, idle speculation was foolish, especially with the readings they were getting. Frankly, the wave patterns were erratic. Too erratic to to constructed, really. Most of the play with SAT (Seismic Alteration Technology) that Odile had seen needed even pulses of energy to maintain the seismic waves -- even pulses that manifested themselves in similar bursts through the planet's crust. Unless something went wrong, there were always patterns. Odile paused, her train of thought derailing. Now, there was an idea. Could something have gone wrong? Not a weapon, per se, but something? A new energy technology, or research, or... well, scientific progress gone kersplat? With a growing frown, she started poking at some more information, as well as some sci-journals coming out of it. Something was amuck.
  4. It was good to be looking at the ship, instead of being on the ship. Being away from the bloody, scorched mess of her secondary lab was especially good. It gave O'd'yl less visual reason to fume, for one thing. For a second... well, it was good just to have breathing room. This was, for certain, not exactly the kind of therapeutic R&R that gave her time for zen meditation and yoga. Most of the time, just as now, the Xenexian was pacing, glaring at Agincourt through the viewport and past her at the abyss beyond. Pacing kept her busy. Pacing kept her from ranting at the Gorgon. Pacing kept her from launching a grand, vendetta-drive raid on Station Security to commit vengeance against the grozing bastard who blew up her Lab. Pacing therefore kept O'd'yl out of the Brig, out of trouble, and still sane. Would that have done anything to soothe her bruised sense of justice? Hell. No. Really, at this point, she wasn't sure that even ripping out... what was his name? Murderer-with-a-face-like-an-ape? The Butcher? Oh, right -- Chase. Even if she ripped out Chase's heart and roasted it in the secondary lab along with other sacrifices, it wouldn't make her feel any better, which was distressing. And why not? Hell if she knew. Even the prospect of beating the little dissident to a pulp didn't bring her any joy. It made no sense -- then again, none of this did. It wasn't as if she'd never lost men before. It was something she came to accept years before, and while she was -- what had someone once accused her of being? A mother hen? -- she still knew that one couldn't launch grand "clan warfare" just because someone went down. She wasn't a fool. So again, why was this bothering her so much? If anything, she was tempted to believe it was almost a "straw breaking the Xenexian-camel's back" sort of thing. Earth going boom, Agincourt generally going the route of Hell in a handbasket, general malaise in the Federation... adding internal terrorists did nothing for her already sparkling, peppy personality. Luckily, even if a blood and gore sacrifice of assorted Midshipman "I Deserve to be Quartered" Chase body parts wouldn't make her feel better (and was slightly impossible), O'd'yl still knew something that would. She was going to need whiskey for this. Strong. Barrels. Of. Whiskey. Many strong barrels of whiskey. Whiskey galore. More whiskey in her veins than blood. Then, then maybe O'd'yl would find peace. And so, the Xenexian tore herself away from the viewport, and made her way to the station's bar.
  5. Odile was approximately thirty minutes from going to bed (she had to admit, the Vulcan suites the Agincourt-ers were granted were... very nice) when she heard her communicator. An hour after that, and she was unloading off an equally cushy Starfleet shuttle that landed somewhere south of Shi'Kahr. "Oh, good, you're here." A nondescript-looking (and rankless) human scurried out to the landing pad, greeting her without any exceptional amount of warmth. "And why am I here?" she asked, looking around the assorted buildings at the base, which could at best be described as... isolated. "The comm from the admiral wasn't exactly... specific." She glanced up at a circling craft, still high in orbit, and raised an eyebrow. It gleamed in the reflected light from Shi'Kahr, kilometers away. "What in hells..." "It's a chromium-plated shuttle," the human explained, and she watched as it circled for approach. Two Starfleet fighters flanked it, but it was the lead ship that left her jaw slack. "Amazing." "Yes yes -- hurry on, come inside..." He led her in, through a waiting area and towards a large, cavern of a room, clearly set up to be a weapons testing center. "We're beginning some preliminary laboratory tests on the Soltan weaponry," he finally answered Condacin. "The rest of the team will arrive shortly. Feel free to make yourself at home with the equipment -- you're familiar with the subjects, of course." "Of course," Odile answered numbly, and looked over the case of the silver-green weapons. Left alone with the weapons, she experimentally picked one up, turning it in her hand and half-expecting the glove mechanism to engage. "Commander?" Another rankless one, this time Andorian, said to her, appearing seemingly from nowhere. "We've brought in someone who has some experience with mind-linked weaponry; his shuttle will be landing down very soon." She started at the voice, nodding. "Well, send him in when he arrives, then. I'm going to..." Odile gestured with the weapon she was holding. "Experiment until he gets here." The Andorian nodded. "He's a telepath. 'Fleet took your suggestions to heart." A grin spread. "You know," she said, cryptically, and the Andorian looked slightly confused, "I could get used to being commissioned!" He nodded a few times and departed, leaving Odile in silence again. She looked over the familiar weapons, this time willing the one she selected to activate. That in itself took time -- and it seemed to take forever for it actually to wrap around her wrist. "Finally," she muttered when it rehardened in place, and she gave it a hearty glare -- to which it replied with a slight shock. "Ow." All right. Time for practice. She'd had a little too much time since her last trial-run to feel comfortable demonstrating to a novice; a quick refresher would be good. Ready, aim... fire. Nothing. Not even a spark. She felt like an old-legend mage who found that her magic wand was, in fact, a non-magical twig. "Grozit," she swore, shaking at the weapon clinging to her wrist. "Work, damn you..." Frustrated, she raised it to firing height again, letting her anger at the inanimate object channel... She was knocked back a good stride's length, the weapon lay across the room, and promptly exploded. "Grozit!" Odile exclaimed again, rubbing at the skin more out of anger than hurt, and glared at the remains of the ball-weapon. "You know," a voice suddenly said from behind her, "it's best to keep weapons in your hand." She shot off an irritated answer, still staring at the smoldering mass in the corner. "Clearly, I didn't mean to do that." "I'd hope not." She turned, an eyebrow arching as she considered the man who'd just managed to appear. "You're not Starfleet?" "Not anymore, no." He picked up one of the silver-green balls in his hand and looked at it for a long moment, examining it carefully. "Neat toys." "Careful with that!" she yelped, prying it out of his hand and putting it back in the case. "Have you been briefed on these, or did they give you as much advance notice on this testing as I did?" Stifling a snort, the tall, dark figure of a man handed over the ball. "I read your report on the way here, as well as some early observations from the scientists heading this unit." "I admit, this sudden research was... unexpected," Odile admitted. "Though not unappreciated. I was hoping I would have more time to study the Soltan tech in a better environment. Starships are hazardous places to test weapons, I've decided." This time, unable to cover his amusement, the man smirked. "I take it you learned that the hard way," he said, then added in Xenexian something (that translation wouldn't do justice to) that effect summarized Odile's feelings about the weapons. Her eyes widened considerably, and she babbled in the same language. "You speak Xenexian?" "A little here and there," he admitted. A grin took the place of her surprise, and she wiped off a slightly sooty palm on her other sleeve. "O'd'yl of Condacin," she introduced herself. Extending his own hand, he shook the Xenexian female's firmly. "Koshic N'Dak." She blinked. "The Koshic N'Dak? The Elasian one?" Absent-mindedly, she returned the gesture. "Lord Regent Koshic N'Dak?" Mildly amused, Koshic nodded. "My reputation precedes me." "Well," she admitted, "Elasia is fairly close to Xenex." "Yes, I spent some time on your world some years ago." He paused, assessing the female. "You would have been a child then, I suppose." "Interesting," she mused. "When? What were you doing?" "Getting into trouble." He smirked, glancing back to the weapons again. "And doing some time at a Starfleet dig near Jakon province." "You were at that dig?" She grinned. "The first expedition in the fifties or the return when they uncovered the burial mounds?" "The return." "You're joking..." She inhaled sharply. "I wish I were you," she sighed, wistful. "They weren't even open to the public when I went... and it wasn't like Condacin was on good enough terms with Jakon to swing political favors." Her gaze fell on the weapons, and she broke from her reverie. "Anyway, I guess we should... work on this stuff..." He nodded, "Yes... they dragged me hear all the way from Elasia in the middle of elections. We'd best make good of the time we have together." "All right. So." She picked up one of the weapons carefully, keeping a light touch on it. "Pick one out, and it takes a little work, but you can sort of... push on it for awhile, and then it'll activate. Icky gel," warned. "Don't get scared, it's not dangerous, we don't think. And it won't hurt or anything -- it just has to meld to your hand." Koshic picked up one of the balls and rubbed it in his palm for a few moments. Slowly, carefully, he squeezed the ball and it formed around this hand and wrist the trademark "gun". "Like this?" "That was damned easy..." Odile stared for a moment, and sighed. "We needed a teep from the beginning." Without speaking, Koshic closed his eyes for a moment, aimed at the target-wall at the far end of the room and "released". It took her a second to process. Then, "The first time... that... that took me almost an hour just to get it to fire!" Odile exclaimed, staring from the scorch on the wall to the weapon to the telepath. "Congratulations!" "Your notes were a great deal of help." She looked stunned for a moment, then smiled. "Thanks," she answered, blushing slightly. "Let's try to see what this thing can really do, eh?" "I don't really have any gauge on its power... that's the hardest part to control. 'Aim and shoot' is easier..." Koshic nodded, then stepped away from the table and Odile. He closed his eyes and concentrated. The weapon morphed slightly, wrapping further up his arm to his elbow. He took a deep breath and released again. Thirty seconds later, Odile had backed even further away, and watched as the automatic safeties tried to preserve what was left of the wall. With a worried, rather frightened expression, she glanced up at Koshic. "And I thought blowing up the garbage can might have been on the top setting..." she commented, dryly. Koshic flexed his forarm a few times--it hurt. "Ouch." "Burned it?" "No," he said as he deactivated the weapon. "Just got some bioelectric feedback." "How in all the gods' names did you do that?" she asked, letting him put the weapon away himself. "It only shocked me when I was trying to hack it to bits on my hand..." "It seems to respond to telekenetic impulses... it was a hunch." "They, uh... said you had done things with telepathic weapons before." Grimacing and still feeling the pain in his arm, he answered. "Yes." "So you're used to... bioelectric feedback?" "It's been a long time," he said honestly. "Though occasionally normal telepathy can give you some... but nothing that strong." "What triggers it?" she asked, peering at him curiously. "With most telepathic-link devices the user has to 'envision' what he wants to happen; this seems to be something similar... though not precisely. Of course, it's not really configured for my biology." "Naturally, unless you're blue and are hiding an extra pair of arms" she answered good-naturedly. "Do you need a medic?" "No," he said. "I think I'll be fine. Just won't be trying that till we know more about it's responsiveness." "Build up slower, then, next time?" she suggested. "Try controlling the power to a lower level." "Yes." "All right then." She set up a second tricorder, placing it on the table near the weapons. "Precision, too -- try aiming for the targets and not destroying the wall," she teased. "You think I am putting that thing on again till I've had time for my arm to regain feeling?" "Oh." She paused. "You're not ambidextrous, then? I mean they have four arms, so it'd work on either..." Another pause. "Grozit, that was probably classified or something..." "I've been given the most recent council briefings," he said, with a smirk. "Advantages of being an Ambassador, no?" "Ah. Good." She considered, looking relieved. "Shouldn't you be on the council? Or at least up for election?" "We appoint our Ambassadors," Koshic said, still rubbing at his forearm. "Thankfully I wasn't on Earth when the attack happened." She looked over the weapons, considering the ramifications of their project down the line. "Lucky for all of us," she said, quietly.
  6. How kind of you to offer.
  7. Harrison: We thought we'd start with a smaller gathering before subjecting you to the whole Council. It'll go faster... hopefully. Harper: Thank you for that, sir. Harrison: Sit down, and don't look so nervous. Heiran: We'll want to hear everything, but the most important thing is the tactical information on this new threat. How much data were you able to gather on their ability to just... appear in our space? Harper: To JoN's and Condacin. I think that's a project you both worked on. Condacin: Basically, as you all know, the Soltan use subspace technology. While what we're now calling the "early-warning system" wasn't so important to us when we were in Perseus Arm, we did acquire quite a bit of data that's helping us coordinate now, with several other ships in the Fleet. JoN's: This early warning system is a viable defense now. It always was, but now even moreso. The Soltans can effectively cloak themselves using the subspace, and we don't always know where they can pop up. Condacin: When we were first pulled into the subspace "bubble" with the rest of the fleet -- when we were pulled into Perseus for the first time -- we picked up several fleet subspace frequencies. JoN's: Those frequences could herald a Soltan ship. Condacin: Now we have some single-ship signatures too -- we think -- but we haven't had as much time to study those, as they were from the fleet that attacked Earth. We have a Soltan drive, too. JoN's The drive enabled the ship's engineers to enable us to tag along with a Soltan fleet in the subspace. The warning time for one of these fleets hawking in on you is really short. Any theories are untested, but there isn't much of a window to work with. Rieve: While we have a chance to know when or where they might appear, the initiative is all the Soltan's. If we wait on the defensive, our response time will be improved, but they will have the tactical advantage in any attack. JoN's: In addition to their tactical superiority, they also have a nice little ability to turn a species into a Soltan.
  8. Mishra: How does Soltan technology work? Condacin: To put things simply, Soltan responds to brainwaves. The brainwaves trigger the different "pieces" of technology to assume different forms, based on what the operator needs at the moment. Mishra: And how does the operator interface with the technology? Condacin: Touch. It responds best to Soltan DNA, though we had limited success activating and operating the devices ourselves. It was unpredictable what "form" of the technology -- in our case, specifically, an engineering console -- we would get. Think of it like trying to listen to a conversation on a nearby frequency to the one you're using, but not the same one, exactly -- the device would get some of what we were trying to tell us, but not all the little details. Mishra: Did you test this with different races? Condacin: Several. Xenexian, human, Caitian, Romulan, Nightflyer, Shadow... Mishra: Did you test it with any psi-positive personnel? Condacin: No. Shadow aside -- and whether or not that counts as psi-positive is for someone aside from me to answer -- we operated with non-teeps. Mishra: But if if functions on brainwaves, wouldn't that be the logical step? Condacin: It would be. That didn't occur to us. Under the circumstances we were also working to install the subspace drive which the devices controlled, and I suppose things were a bit more muddled than ideal laboratory conditions. Mishra: Understandable. Khren'nos: It ought to be our first avenue of testing, anyway. Mishra: Agreed. Tell us more about the way the technology changes state. Condacin: The devices go through a series of changes as it morphs. First a gel-like, viscous state, then to solid after it "remembers" the state the user desires. We counted six (correct if there's a canon number) different states in one "console"; who knows if there were more we couldn't access or even imagine well enough to retrieve. Mishra: But how can it configure itself so many ways? Condacin: Shape-memory. It's... "trained"... and gods if I understand it entirely... to retain several forms. The Federation's tried something along the Soltan's lines, I know, though not so extensive. Mishra: And not nearly so effective. Khren'nos: This change -- it's a true shape change, not merely a configuration such as we use on bridge consoles? Condacin: It's a true shape change, yes. Their weapons -- hand-weaponry, that is -- work the same way. They go from a ball to a hand-encasing "glove", and then back again. Khren'nos: That sounds like there's a mass change involved. Condacin: The mass remains the same. Only the shape changes. Khren'nos: But such a drastic alteration.... and where does the power supply go in the 'ball' mode? Condacin: It's biopowered. As for where it "goes" -- as far as I can tell, it's able to shift position -- unwind and wrap with the rest of the device, if you will. It's a little difficult to dissect, if you will, because the only way to get at the thing in "glove" form is by cutting it apart while it's on a living subject. Khren'nos: It can't be removed from the hand? Condacin: No, and if it was able to be, it would revert to ball-form. Khren'nos: And how does this weapon function? Condacin: It's another mind-linked device. It uses links to the user's brainwaves, again, to control both the targeting and the power settings. These are both hard to control -- at least for me. Again, with a telepath, perhaps you'd have more success. The power settings are the more tricky of the functions, too. Khren'nos: How strong is it? Condacin: Very strong. I would hazard a guess, from preliminary tests, stronger than the average Fleet phaser.
  9. Skrov: Let's return to the subject of this 'Soltanization' you keep referencing. What, precisely, is it you mean by that? Condacin: It's almost like a Borg transformation, though this happens on a biological, cellular level. The Soltans are literally able to convert other beings to their own species. Skrov: That seems rather far-fetched, Commander. How exactly does the process work? Condacin: It basically rewrites the DNA on a cellular level. It's a virus, technically. It toys with the chromosomes, and after a certain amount of time, the former human or whatever turns blue, grows an extra set of arms, and has virtually none of the personality it possessed before. Skrov: Let's be clear here, Commander -- you're talking about an extensive genetic change, and neurological processes? Condacin: I am. If "extensive" is taken to imply "nearly complete ". Skrov: How were you able to identify... Soltanized... individuals? One Crewman Burne, I believe? Condacin: The Y'l'Sai entity -- Burne's Soltan persona -- still retained certain memories of Burne. There are still traces of the prior individual. Unfortunately as the Soltanization process is more... complex... than the introduction of the Borg's hive mind and implants, the individual may not be as retrievable as those recovered from the Borg Collective. A point to ponder is that this makes the Soltan more potentially dangerous and certainly more frightening than their cyborg comparison-counterparts. Another point of interest is that while chromosomal, nuclear DNA is destroyed, mitochrondrial DNA is left untouched. Skrov: The identification of Y'l'Sai as Burne was then based on the mitochondrial DNA? Condacin: Correct. Skrov: What is the infection pattern of the virus? Condacin: The infection is spread through physical contact. Over approximately three days, though this is not by any means a proven estimate, the DNA is replaced with Soltan genome. The previous individual fades until it is replaced with the new Soltan identity. Skrov: And what progress has been made on preventing or reversing such an infection? Condacin: Some. A medical-science initiative was put forth on Agincourt to attempt to reverse the virus. Unfortunately, this has not succeeded on a live subject. Sands: Wryly. It's succeeded on a deceased one? Condacin: We had some success when dealing with material not currently alive, yes. Skrov: Interesting. What process did you use? Condacin: There was a combination of attempts and methods. We took the most recent "normal" genetic scan of the individual and used it as a base from which to "repair" the DNA. That had more limited success than the retrovirus, which basically worked to literally reverse the effects of the Soltan's virus. Harrison: What about preventing infection? Condacin: Avoiding physical contact is the most we've done. Preventative measures haven't been as much of a priority as "fixing" the problem, Sirs. Skrov: You have no leads on how to protect planetary populations against this threat? Condacin: No. Not as of yet.
  10. I utterly hate Charlotte Harper. Yes. I know that she prefers Charlie. Or Medusa. But right now, I have half a year's irritation built up, and I feel like calling her Charlotte and thus, irritating her, too. Because she's done many nasty, mean, and downright evil things to a poor, poor Xenexian enlistee since I joined onto Agincourt. Thanks to Ms. Charlotte Harper, I'm an officer now. And not just an ensign. No. Not just an ensign. Not a junior lieutenant. Not a lieutenant. A lieutenant commander. The woman, clearly, wants to make me as miserable as possible. Lieutenant-fracking-commander Odile Condacin. Why? Why?. And I'm not just a commander-in-the-back-corner-working-on-a-bunsen-burner. She made me chief of sciences. Chief! Chief!! This is torture! This is inhumane! She knew what she was doing! She's not innocent... or ignorant of what she was doing. Not that the dog helped any. Corizon's on the same list as Harper. But in spite of all that, I still, somewhat, liked Charlotte-darling. I mean she had excuses, even if I didn't like them. But this... this... this is utterly unforgivable. A week in front of a bunch of bureaucractic, nosy, hard-headed, dull, self-righteous, brassy L'k'nth'zs who know nothing about Science and will ask a thousand stupid questions. Why me? For that matter, why poor Kitty? And Rieve? And Casper? Couldn't Harpy have done this herself -- or best of all, dropped off a bunch of data tapes and let Admiral Naht-so-bryte and Admiral Dum-bee figure it all out on their own? Walking down the sandy path, she kicked a rock. At least Vulcan was homey. Deserty. Not quite vegetated enough to be Xenex, no, and too red... but that "blast furnace" feeling you got upon arrival... that was familiar. Comfortable. Odile sighed. At least the Council didn't set up on Andor. Thank the gods for small favors.
  11. Something went sailing from Odile's office through the air, collided with a cabinet, and fell unceremoniously to the floor. Upon further inspection, it bore a Starfleet insignia and a few lines of basic text beneath it. "I don't believe this!" Odile raged, storming out of the office. "I can't understand!" Flipping her long, shimmering black hair, Aiella looked over to her department head. Then, as dryly as a martini, she asked, "Understand what, sweety? It's a padd. It has words. You read them." "This is all his fault! I just wanted to get commissioned without going to the academy for years! Did he arrange that? No! He had to go and get me promoted!" "Who?" she asked, laying down the scanner she had in hand and turning on the stool to face the Xenexian. "Him -- the captain, my old friend... the Dameon!" "Oh! The puppy!" "Yes." Odile nodded eagerly. "Capt -- Admiral Puppy. He said he could help me skip out on the Academy nonsense, but he didn't say anything about this. This is just... travesty." Aiella smiled widely and ruefully at the Xenexian, who was about one straw across the proverbial camel's back from having a major breakdown. Now if only she could find... "You must have been some yeoman..." Odile's eyes widened. "It wasn't like that!!" she answered. "Oh my gods, how can everyone think that it's impossible for a commanding officer and a yeoman to be friends without having to imply that there was..." She flushed darkly. "You know..." "You mean you didn't even try to find out?" She cast a look. "It really is true what I've heard about you, then..." The Xenexian very nearly growled. "What have you heard? And no. I didn't try to find out anything. There's nothing to find out." "Oh, well, your loss then." Aiella leaned back into her chair and crossed her legs, looking over the Xenexian again. "Really, I don't understand why you're so upset, most people would kill or worse for a promotion." Actually, the "worse" sounded far more enjoyable, but Aiella wasn't going to say that aloud to the repressed one. Odile shuddered. "I hate rank. I liked my rank -- when I was a petty officer," she added. "But no, now Medusa had to make me a chief, and now Puppy has me a fancy Lieutenant Commander." She sighed, flopping into a chair defeatedly. "I don't want to be a Starfleet mucky-muck." Aiella pursed her lips and narrowed her glance at Odile. "You know some people never make it above jay-gee, let alone ell-tee or Lt. Commander," she said. "And all you had to do was go on a shuttle ride with a puppy. I mean, it could be worse... I know he's not that Calhoun guy, but..." Somebody was very near to being strangled alive. "I," she stated coldly. "Did not. Do. Anything. On. The. Shuttle." The breaking point was getting closer. "Oh, it's not thing to be ashamed of, Odile... I mean Commander..." Her hands balled into tight fists, knuckles turning white. "I... I can't believe," she stammered, flushing with rage. "We were on a rescue mission, and I would never..." This was so going to be worth whatever awful payback the Xenexian thought up. "J'gztch't? Of course not, not while flying a shuttle... I mean unless he was on autopilot?” The chair clattered when it tipped; Odile was on her feet. "You're out of line!" she hissed. "Don't get mad at me," she said, barely able to hold back laughter. "I am just prepping you for the ship gossip. Speaking of which, how long have those orders been in?" "I don't know," Odile answered, flustered. "I can't believe this, though. I'm tired of this happening." "How long did it take when Ensign Khanele and 'Q-jzke had that "Pouch Incident" for it to be all over the ship?" "A day?" she answered, getting nervous. "But... no one needs to know..." Aiella stood up, walked over and picked up the padd, reading over it. "Well, you still have a few hours then... these orders are almost seventeen hours old." "I don't check my messages. I swear, though, I'm going to kill something if these have to stand. Can't I refuse orders?" "And spurn your dear puppy?" "He's not my Puppy!!" Odile hissed, storming off.
  12. Odile nodded to Shadow in dismissal, leaving her office to marine doctor and Xenexian. "So then -- I hear you might have some magic that can take away this hangover, hmm?" Troll was not quite certain what was really going on; Sin was being ... well, nice! He decided it was time to help Sin out in hopes of returned favors. Grinning at her, "I've been studying my spells, so this should do the trick." Activating his medscanner with its holographic display in HUD mode, Troll placed his right hand at certain pressure points along Sin's upper spine and back of neck. A bioelectric field manipulator in his left hand re-adjusted her body's energy field to a more healthy pattern. She nodded, sighing happily as the nausea and headaches started to subside. "Thanks -- I appreciate it. And... could you not make a note of this on my record? I don't quite want to be known as the ship drunk, you know..." "As a favor to you, this was just a.... social call, shall we say? Even though I did stop by as a medic it wasn't in response to a call for services needed. Will that work? No service performed equals no report to file." "Sounds fair to me." The Xenexian gave him a mischievous grin. "So why did you drop by?" she asked. "With this double duty dropped in my lap," he said, gesturing to his field CMO tabs along with his Marine insignia, "I've become a touch dissatisfied with our current capability to respond to medical incidents during potential combat situations. I want to redesign the 'med shuttle' and its two escort 'combat shuttles'. I know a lot of this falls to Engineering, but the sensors, medical programs and bio-combat systems are more your area of knowledge. What do I need to do to acquire your time and services?" "Hmm... they do tend towards Engineering," she agreed, and smirked. "Hmm... I suppose I could have medical owe me a favor, since I don't think either Science or I need anything at the moment..." Grinning slightly, "Medical wouldn't owe you anything... however, I will pick up your tab when you call. If that isn't good enough, then it's back to the drawing padd on this one." Troll seemed slightly tense at Sin's comment about Medical owing her favors. Odile shrugged. "Oh, very well. So what improvements are you looking at making? I assume -- upgrading the sensor pallets, maybe boosting some of the weapons..." Another shrug. "You could talk to Kitty for that, but I think I can more than likely help. Now -- what's this about biocombat?" Seeming a little too calm, "I'm just wanting to be ready to take on anything like the Soltan effect, at range and on board these new runabouts. Preemptively, if necessary. But I don't want those systems to be easily noticeable or identifiable" "So something... under the radar, so to speak. And the shuttles shouldn't even look Federation in origin? Nondescript? We'll need to take out the transponders, I think -- or use some sort of material to mask them when we want. Maybe a mixed electron field..." Odile pulled up a padd, noticing how nice it was to be able to concentrate again, and started keying in a few ideas. "Actually, I don't want nondescript, but I agree on them not having much connection with Federation styles or designs. I also want them to be atmospheric-capable and as low-emissioned as we can possibly make them, for when they need it." Tossing that about in her mind, she nodded. "We could do some sort of emissions cloak, probably." The Xenexian smirked. "Sure you don't just want to make it a black ops project? Troll handed over an isolated padd, with ship configurations not unlike the ancient Kzinti ships. "I prefer clear as crystal, and as substantial as vapor. By the way, I need your bioprint here please," he said, gesturing to the access point of the padd. "I can understand that. So will we be keeping this project between you, me, and the Romulan, or do you jarheads mind me sharing it with the rest of my department?" she asked, pressing her thumb against the screen. "I prefer it filtered, but use your judgement. By the way, this is a personal project at the moment; the other jarheads aren't aware of it yet. I'm currently filtering this project both up and down the chain" "If this bends Starfleet protocols I'll take the slap-down that goes with it. I prefer the fewest heads on the chopping block if I go too far with this." Condacin snorted. "Oh, don't even bother making the promise -- I've heard it before, and in the end all heads end up chopped off. Besides -- Starfleet would have kicked me out by now if they were going to. I'll speak more with you after I've had the time to look at some specs?" she offered. "By the way, do you have a sparring partner to keep you in shape? And could you use another?" "The cat, occasionally -- sometimes Medusa when she's feeling nice," Odile teased. "Why -- offering?" "Actually, yes. And it would better explain any time we spend together beyond those needed for the official upgrades," he added, flexing his hands and grinning. "That it would. Very well -- talk with you more in a few hours?" she offered. "That'll be fine" Troll nodded, then headed off looking for Shadow.
  13. Welcome!
  14. By every god of revelry and feast was Odile hungover. It wasn't just that... vague headache, either. Oh no. Amazingly, she'd woken up an hour earlier than usual -- thank you, spiked punch, for making her sleep patterns wonk -- and had spent the extra hour sprawled somewhere between bed and latrine. Odile hadn't remembered drinking that much. Which was probably a bad sign. No, wait... yes, she did. After the spiked punch (which she swore she didn't have anything to do with) there were the pina coladas, and after the pina coladas, well... there was the whiskey back in her quarters. But she'd deserved it! A whole night being nice to dignitaries, planning the reception, cleaning up after the reception (which she'd insisted upon for good measure, even if it had meant that she'd dropped and broken a few dishes in her... now, stupor wasn't a fair word. On shift in forty minutes. Oh, gods, if she were home, she'd be dragging herself (or be being dragged) to the household altar of B'z'jkytt, to beg for divine wine-related intervention. Then again if she were home, she wouldn't have let her alcohol tolerance slip. Here, when blue, multi-armed things attacked all the time and giant birds pecked at you and Medusa made you be chief o' sci... ughhh, you didn't want to be caught drunk. Odile dropped last night's dress uniform (which was amazingly uncomfortable when worn overnight) into the nearest laundry receptacle. She certainly hoped she'd not be in that any time soon. Then she piled into the 'fresher, slumping as the sonic shower took effect. Didn't seem to do much good, though. She still felt like k'l'n't when she got out. One sloppily assembled uniform, a distinct "Grozit" at the light intensity, and a disturbingly... intense turbo-ride later, Odile arrived in Science. Gods. This was not going to be a fun day.