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Capt Daniel Cooper

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About Capt Daniel Cooper

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  1. "When sorrows come, they come not single spies but in battalions." ~ Hamlet, IV.v *** "In summary, I think you can understand a certain amount of irritation on my part. Sir." Daniel stood with his arms hooked behind his back, staring down his conversational partner with a directness that belied the several pips and an admirals' bar which lay between them. Admiral Aaron White was less than impressed, and it showed. "We've had this conversation already, Daniel. Twice." Daniel shrugged. "I simply want to be sure it's noted for the record that this was poorly handled from a Fleet support standpoint." White looked somewhat amused. "You've made your point very clear, Captain." He leaned forward, resting his elbows on his desk. "Sit down, Daniel, seriously. Let's not make a point of policy over this. What's done is done. The fact is that we would never have been able to divert a full contingent to do permanent guard over a border station without cause. Your report actually indicates that the Breen were driven back decisively -- really, I could legitimately assert that our cause is less now than it has been for some time." Daniel dropped heavily into the chair across the desk and made an irritated noise in the back of his throat. "Better if I hadn't made the report, then." "No. As a matter of fact, it made the rounds of several highly influential sorts of people and the Missouri and the Iowa are yours for the foreseeable future." White smirked as he saw Daniel raise his head in surprise. "So there...and you think we never listen once we pass Commodore." Daniel sighed. "Always the sense of humor, eh, Aaron?" "In this case, I'm deadly serious," White answered placidly. "Besides, we have other concerns in that sector which might have necessitated the reassignment in any case." That got Daniel's attention in spite of himself, and he straightened, giving the older man a curious look. "What sort of concerns?" It was White's turn to shrug, and suddenly he looked very tired. "Oh, the usual business, border conflicts, the occasional colony who think it would be a good idea to try life out on their own. Keeping an eye on balance of power dynamics is a headache on the edge of nowhere; you're lucky it hasn't all been delegated on your shoulders yet. You've seen the reports -- ever since the Breen disappeared, no one in the sectors they controlled has any idea who's in charge and everyone's trying to be so at once. And the Tjurakh continuing to make a nuisance of themselves, of course." "Right..." Daniel said quietly, recalling the reports passed to him of the raids conducted by Ferengi-funded marauders in the last few months. The last he'd heard, several weeks ago around the time he'd been reassigned to the border, was that a Tjurakh colony had been destroyed in return -- by unknown assailants. "They weren't phased by their setbacks, then?" "No. If anything, they're organizing more cleanly since they were attacked, and their operations have become harder and harder to track. As near as we can tell, they've been making and breaking alliances regularly as various smaller groups have tried and failed to become prominent. It's enough to make the Intel boys very cranky." "I can imagine," Daniel answered wryly. "We'll be sure to keep our eyes open." "You'll have to -- it's getting to the point where it may be something we have to have you look into in earnest. We've had a couple more small attacks inside our borders but no major incursions -- yet, anyway. On the bright side, their Ferengi supply line may possibly have been cut off, but it's also possible they've reached the point where they no longer need it." "Some bright side," Daniel said slowly, turning over this new information in his mind. It was not the world's most satisfying news, coming on the heels of the nearly-catastrophic Breen attack. Then again, if he'd wanted a life where bad news only came one item at a time...he wouldn't have chosen Starfleet.
  2. ((The log below accounts for Daniel's absence from sim due to RL circumstances.)) "Daniel, I simply can't redirect an entire defense contingent out to a single frontier station. Not on the evidence of sensor echoes and speculation. The fleet isn't infinite." Daniel Cooper leaned his head on his hand and eyed the determinedly placid expression of the clearly bored Admiral's aide on his screen, and felt exhausted. This conversation had been going on for quite a long time now, the culmination of numerous hours of inquiries as to the state of a Fleet response to his reports about the Breen, and his frustration was starting to overcome his natural diplomacy. "I understand that, Aaron, believe me. I am not merely being obstinate, and if I had any suspicion that the situation was being analyzed simply on guesswork, I wouldn't have called you in the first place, or any of the other people through whom I have been forwarded to get to you. I'm not a fool, Aaron -- but I find it hard to believe the Fleet isn't concerned about this." Aaron White managed to muster a sympathetic look. He and Daniel had occasionally interacted when Daniel had been a personnel officer and he knew that it would be morale and dynamic of his crew which the captain was most concerned about, and the question of how best to support their peace of mind in an unsettled situation, not the exact tactical advantage which -- if they were both to be entirely honest -- a small contingent probably wouldn't really provide in quantity to the sort of situation he was describing anyway. Rubbing a hand down his face, he kept his tone civil as he responded, "The Fleet is concerned about everything to do with the Breen, Daniel -- but so far, everything you have told us suggests that they are out of the way altogether. Until we're given evidence that they are actually planning--" "It's entirely possible that we won't know what they're planning until it's entirely too late," Daniel said dryly. "Better we be prepared now than be caught with our pants down." "And for how long do we wait?" Aaron raised his eyebrows at Daniel expectantly. "For how long do we keep extended resources on alert for a border station? At what point do we let our guard back down?" Daniel frowned. The truth was, he had no answer for that. The Breen might very well be planning to reappear that day. Or the next. Or a year in the future. Or not. They didn't know, and that was the mindbogglingly frustrating part. Leaning his head against the heels of his hands, he kneaded his temples for a moment in silence. Aaron went on, "It's not that we want to leave you to your own devices out there, but we can't send ships to the border haphazardly. Keep us informed, Daniel, and hold things together till your people have more information." Daniel said nothing for a moment, and Aaron pressed, "Did you hear me, Captain?" "Yes. Yes, I heard. I don't like it, but I heard." The screen winked out, and Daniel glanced towards the chrono, restraining a groan. No wonder Aaron was touchy and his own head hurt; it was very late gamma shift, much later than he'd realized. Letting out a sigh, he leaned his head down on his arms, shutting his eyes. He wasn't sure what time it was when he woke up, but the red alert sirens were screaming.
  3. The lights in the lab were still dimmed since alpha shift wasn’t about to start for another two hours. Only two workstations were activated and a few monitors displayed different strands of DNA. Nick was hunched over a microscope, micropipette in hand, adding some liquid to a solution in a petri dish. “Doctor.” A voice and light step sounded behind him; Captain Cooper had just entered sickbay and been directed to the lab as the location where the CMO had been working for some time in the mid-level dimness. “Early riser as well, I see,” he commented with a sort of wry pleasantness, stepping through the door and letting it shut behind him. Nick gave a start and turned around, surprised to see the Captain. “What time is it?” Nick asked. As always he had completely lost track of time. Cooper’s statement, however, suggested it must be early in the morning rather than late at night - not that this didn’t depended on the point of view anyway. Daniel smiled. “About 0500, give or take,” he answered. “You must have been having a busy night, if you have to ask.” Lepage had the worn look of an all-nighter written all over his face. Daniel doubted anyone on the station (at least anyone aware of the Breen situation in any particular) had had a very peaceful rest, really. His smile faded a bit, and he asked more seriously, “Has there been any progress? I heard your report to Commander Chirakis yesterday, or got the gist of it at any rate; it sounds like a bad business.” “Wow, 5 am. I’m going to regret that later. It used to be easier ten years ago.” Nick took a deep breath and exhaled audibly while he started digging through a pile of PADDs stacked up on the desk. When he had found the one he was looking for he handed it to Cooper. “I have, indeed, made a few very interesting discoveries.” The CMO paused to give the Captain time to read the PADD. Daniel took it, chuckling. “If I comm down later and hear that you’ve napped on one of the biobeds, I’ll know why.” He liked Lepage; he’d had a few short discussions with the doctor since coming aboard the station and the other man seemed both intelligent and affable; those characteristics seemed in no way dampened by the strain of medical’s current load, though they were both feeling the tension of the early hour and the current potential crises. Looking down at the PADD he quickly ran his eyes over the data Lepage had been working on. “Right, what am I looking at, here?” “You, sir, are looking at the root of the problem,” Nick answered much more cheerfully than he actually felt. “I’ll give you the easy version if you promise not to court martial me if you find me napping.” Daniel’s eyes crinkled at the corners in wry amusement. “I’ll take that under advisement,” he answered lightly. “I’ll rest more peacefully then. Anyway, the root of the problem. If you look at this screen,” Nick pointed at the biggest screen occupying a large section of the bulkhead to the left. “You’ll see two strands of DNA. At first glance they look exactly the same. But -,” he pressed a button on the console in front of him and the image zoomed in on a small portion of the strands. “Spot the difference?” Daniel gave the screen a long thoughtful look and then said cautiously, “Yes.” He reached out and tapped the screen at about the midpoint of the strand segment currently visible. Nick nodded and contemplated the image for a few seconds. “I’ll skip the biology lesson only so much. This region right here should be inactive, something called an intron or intragenic region. Now it is an exon, expressed region if you will. I’ll spare you the details as to how I found this since originally I only had the sample with the active gene.” He gave Cooper a questioning look, making sure the Captain would know exactly what they were talking about. Daniel nodded, indicating that he was following. “So some of their...inert genes have been reactivated in a way that shouldn’t have naturally occurred,” he said, repeating the idea aloud to orient himself. “Actually, not quite. It turns out that if you alter the concentration of carbon in the surrounding air and add a bit of silicon the gene become inactive. However, I suspect that initially this gene was inert and only became active once the Deosi fled. Once I’d found that out I took a closer look at the molecular structure of this part of the DNA and I found that the sugar in these nucleotides is not deoxyribose but ribose which technically makes this small segment RNA and not DNA. To make a long story short, their DNA has been altered.” Nick could hardly hide his excitement over the results. Finally they were getting somewhere with his research. The question that remained was how to treat the Deosi’s condition. Daniel tried not to look as blank as he felt at the more technical terms and settled for a slow nod. Lepage’s energy at the discovery was clear, which was the important thing. “Altered to keep the gene inactive as long as they stayed in one place,” he echoed thoughtfully. “A built-in autodestruct.” “Or an anti-theft-device. In any case, as soon as the silicon’s gone the gene is activated and leads to a rather drawn out and painful death. I took hair samples from some of the Deosi and I found traces of silicon. Whether it was in the atmosphere or the food and water supply is anyone’s guess.” Nick tapped a few buttons and the image on the screen returned to its previous size. “The problem is that we have no idea how to stop this whole process once it has begun.” “We never did get the impression the Breen were a particularly kind or merciful people,” Daniel said, just a bit bitterly. “I imagine they would have wanted to make it as difficult as possible to reverse.” He glanced sideways at Lepage. “Are others of the Deosi population showing symptoms at this time?” Nick nodded somberly, digging for another PADD. “I’ve had a few in here. At this points it’s not easy to tell whether their symptoms are caused by other diseases and malnourishment rather than this but we’ll make sure the Deosi will get food supplements containing silicon. That’s all we can do for now.” “Well, it’s more than we had last night,” Daniel answered with a nod. “Progress is certainly something, and I’m impressed with how much you’ve made, albeit at the cost of your sleep schedule.” He rubbed his jaw thoughtfully, his expression pensive. “This could make the idea of transferring them off the station considerably more complicated.” Nick shrugged. “Yeah... well, as long as they get the supplement they should be ok. I’ll try to figure out a more elegant solution. But that’ll take time. What’s important now is that they’ll stay alive.”
  4. It had all happened very quickly, quickly enough that Daniel had spent some time afterwards looking over the external sensor logs to assure himself that it had, in fact, happened. There was no disbelieving the data, however. For a short time the station had been entirely out of contact with...everything. Not only the immediately visible landmarks had been gone but the entire environs of Aegis, everything within sensor range had been gone -- except for the fleet. A massive, hulking presence, clearly aware of Aegis’s arrival. Breen. The name had lost no resonance in the years since the war; the announcement from Porter as to the identity of their incoming visitors had chilled him to the bone, and the irony of that reaction had not been lost on him. He had never actually had occasion to fight the Breen; his injury at Ricktor Prime had left him fit for nothing but a slow recovery at the time when the new players had entered the game, and by the time he was ready to again offer his expertise, all was over. But he had been on Earth at Starfleet Medical when the attack had been brought back to the homefront; he had been one of those doing what he could to protect local civilians as Fleet headquarters had taken the pounding of Breen weaponry. He had wrestled against his weakened leg in the cleanup efforts and heard stories of their attacks in other systems. He, like everyone else, had wondered how much damage would be done to the quadrant before the enemy could be subdued. When, years later during his work in Personnel, he had learned of the Breen’s complete disappearance, he had tried to muster some vengeful pleasure in the idea that something had happened to them. Truly, all he felt was relief. It had been obvious to anyone who wanted to approach the situation practically, however, that they could not have simply been destroyed -- they couldn’t have vanished with such completeness if they were -- and now he was faced with being the one to report the acquisition of definitive proof. They were out of phase, yes, if the initial appraisal of the situation was correct, but they were almost at arms’ length in all other regards, and not only that but they had definitely seen Aegis in the few minutes that the station had spent in the same phased-out netherworld. If they had been lost and looking for a point of reference, they had found one, and it was the station which had so recently fallen under his responsibility. And if they hadn’t been, it meant they were waiting for something. “Damn,” he said aloud in the silence of his office, as he pushed his chair back from the sensor reports and stood, moving towards the door back to the bridge. "Damn, damn, damn. Damn." He found that he felt that summed the situation up quite well.
  5. A transfer of command was no easy thing under most circumstances, and Aegis was no different. Not only had Ambassador Drankum's departure been surrounded by a certain media-and-security circus but it had occurred in the midst of another mild crisis -- the arrival of a group of chronically ill ex-slaves and accompanying mysterious alien technology. And there, once more into the breach, go I… thought Daniel Cooper to himself wryly, sipping at a mug of black coffee as he reached for the next PADD in the stack at his elbow. It was late, by most Starfleet standards; his office had just clicked over to late-watch lighting and he hadn't bothered to turn it up yet. He would probably go to bed in a little while, but he felt better having put a dent in the reports that had been forwarded to him regarding the most pressing issues on the station that he had, for lack of a better word, inherited from the departing Ferengi official. He was most curious about the strange, potentially Breen device which had ended up in the hands of the station's engineering team; that would bear keeping track of, to satisfy his own curiosity as much as for the potential answers -- and questions -- it represented. Accustomed to having darkness reign in the office next to hers, Commander Chirakis paused as she entered the main area of the control tower. After a questioning glance at Porter, who responded with a shrug, she approached Captain Cooper’s office and pressed the chime. “Come,” Daniel said, looking up abruptly from the current PADD and letting it clatter solidly down on the desk. “Captain Cooper,” she said as she crossed the threshold. “Is there... anything I may assist you with?” She glanced at the chronometer as though suggesting to him that it was past his bed time. Catching the pointed look, Daniel smiled and shook his head slightly. “No, thank you, Commander, unless you happen to offer a speedreading course in addition to your other duties.” “Not a speed-reading course, sir. But the computer would be glad to read it for you.” Daniel looked at her for a moment in puzzlement and then realized she’d thought he was serious. "I suppose it would, though I'm not sure that would benefit my comprehension much," he responded, chuckling. "I suppose I'll have to go at it the old-fashioned way." He picked up the PADD he'd been holding again and tapped idly at the controls, giving her a questioning look. The Bajoran commander had a distinctly stiff aspect, one which could have derived from formality or discomfort; he wasn't sure which. "I've been going over the information on the device given to Commander Jorahl's team…interesting stuff, isn't it?" he asked, trying to feel out her reaction. She crossed her arms in a casual manner, taking an easy stance in front of his desk. “Interesting, yes. And not a little... disconcerting, I believe is the Terran word? One could also call it troubling and frightening, if my suspicions are correct.” That got his attention, and he looked at her with slightly raised eyebrows. “Suspicions?” She gave a nod. “The report you have before you contains the preliminary findings of the engineering team. My suspicions, however, are that the device they are working on is a transporter that works with either dimensional shifting or time shifting. Frightening, in that if it does, the Breen could appear anywhere at any time and we would be powerless to detect their approach or defend ourselves. They would be upon us instantly. “However, another suspicion is that the Breen technology is faulty, and that the medical problems the Deosi are experiencing is a result of using that technology. Science and medical are working on that determination.” Daniel made a thoughtful noise in the back of his throat as she finished. “Neither an extremely reassuring concept -- though the fact that we’ve got hold of it at least means we’re a step in the right direction on either one,” he said slowly, shaking his head again and making a mental note to keep close tabs on any progress made with the device. Welcome back to the border, Danny. They play hardball out here. “Indeed,” Kirel continued. “And I have all confidence in our chief of engineering and his team. The device is in capable hands.” Kirel studied his face a minute. He had a look of determination overshadowed by weariness, no doubt having been in his office too long, perhaps having read too many files for one session. But she was not one to criticize in that regard. “Captain,” she began tentatively, “Might I make a suggestion?” “Of course,” Daniel answered promptly, lacing his hands in front of him and looking at her expectantly. “Adjusting to this station will take some time,” she continued. “I am here to facilitate that adjustment. Any request, no matter how small, is part of my duty. Hence, the name.... executive officer.” A suggestive smile crept into her expression, along with a tilt of her head. “Now, Captain. May I get you a cup of coffee... or may I help you turn off the lights?” Daniel laughed, catching the slight smirk in her eyes, and nudged the PADDs away, quickly finishing off the cold mug he had already started. “No, that’s alright, Commander...” he said with amusement, pushing himself to his feet and stepping away from the desk. He could take a hint -- it was late, and there would be no shortage of work to do in the morning. "Probably better we both get some rest," he went on mildly, moving to walk past her towards the doorway. "I'll see you in the morning. Computer...lights out."