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Please Explain...

Posted on Mon Mar 13th, 2017 @ 8:11am by Commander Mercia Kavi & Emmah [Kavi] & David Hawkins & Lieutenant JG Bertram 'Bert' Engels Jr. & Lieutenant Colonel Jonathon Hayter [Hawkins]

Mission: Blackout
Location: Captain's Ready Room
Timeline: Backpost

/// ON ///

Captain David Hawkins took his seat in the Captain's chair as he looked around the bridge. The Main view port showed the sight of the Starbase orbiting Kabel III with the darkness of space as part of its background. The activity of shuttles and a couple starships, both federation and Romulan starships, slowly flew in from all angles doing their own thing as they came back from a mission or doing a mission. A deep feeling of pride truly overwhelmed him as he knew that he and his crew were part of this great en-devour. A new future for the Federation and the Romulan people with a true working peace was an amazing sight. How long it will take to have a strong and stable peace was only over time.

"Helm," David called out after he broke from his thoughts and focused on the mission at hand. "Take us out and bring our Quantam Slipstream Drive online and prepare to engage."

"Aye Captain," The female bajoran called out as she allowed her skills and knowledge came to life as her fingers danced over her console before her as the holoview screen came to life showing details over the view port before the bridge crew.

As the ship had been at warp for almost thirty minutes as he sat in the center chair relaxing and taking in the new shiplace. The feel of this was different in the way she shifted, and the size that seemed to overwhelm other ships around them. In a way, it was a miniature starbase on the move. It was overwhelming to say the least. He looked around one more time snapping out of the tranze he was in to her the turbolift open and out walked his first meeting with those he called up for the mission. He stood up and straightened his uniform as he walked for his new office. He nodded to an officer while he waved the group into his new office.

It was slightly larger and truly a beauty. A couple couches and a large desk with a monitor of to the side of the room giving updates on multiple areas of data. He was truly enjoying it. "Alrighty, thanks all for coming."

Mercia looked up from the couch where she was sitting, nursing a cup of coffee again. It was her life blood. "Like I had a choice." she smirked at David.

Emmah tipped her head at the XO, "Of course you had a choice..."

"... Not really," David countered with a smirk as he walked by her and sat on the edge of the desk as he crossed his arms over his chest and looked at the group before nodding at each one. "Thanks for coming."

"Well, like the commander stated," John spoke up as he moved around the desk and sat in Hawkins' chair behind the desk and leaned back to rest his feet on the Captain's desk. "We didn't have much of a choice."

This response, yet again, just got the simple slight glare from David over his shoulder at the colonel before looking back at the group and continued. "... ch'Koro I called you up here because you are our leading experts on the ship on AI and other engineering marvels. I know you are tired of seeing the insides of my office already, but I am not going to just let you relax, I'm going to use your fast intelligence."

"Anyway, Lieutenant Engels, can you break down all the work you have done with this government we are about to walk into? I understand you have been preparing for this for quite a while before being reassigned to Gladiator," David started off as he looked at his new diplomatic officer.

"Actually, sir, all of the work done was performed by previous diplomatic envoys. I'm actually new to Starfleet as an official member. Before this, my work consisted almost entirely of various relief work and humanitarian projects. This is my first official post." Engels offered with a slightly nervous smile. "I can, however, share with you what I've been given and what I've found in addendum. Where would you like me to start? A profile of the people?"

"Actually that would be hugely helpful. I'm not exactly known for my tact. Goodness I've tried to shoot at least two different diplomatic entourages? To be fair, one of them I did end up helping to save from assassination, and the others were dinosaurs saved the ship from over grown plants. In both cases, I was unprepared for the surprised of what I would see." Mercia laughed.

"Well, to begin with the Haleen are fairly indistinguishable from humans on the exterior. There's a few minor biological differences internally, but nothing of great importance. In the past they were a terribly industrious people that unfortunately rendered their world's surface uninhabitable some hundred and twenty years ago between deforestation and pollution. The resulting ecological crisis led to inert soil, intolerable drought.. The carbon cycle was completely thrown off, leading to a proliferation of carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide and nitrogen dioxide in the atmosphere. That raised temperatures, which led to the drought. Luckily, by them, three-quarters of the population had been moved into underground cities. The remaining quarter, unfortunately, perished when specially constructed above ground habitats failed to provide adequate protection." Bert grimaced at that. The numbers alone had to be staggering. The surface of the planet was just a massive graveyard.

"Much of the remaining population had to be placed into a type of long-term stasis to accommodate the arrangements. Those that elected not to go into stasis unfortunately fell prey to a bevy of psychological issues similar to those first involved in long-term space travel. Suicide and crime rates sky rocketed, which led to the push towards an AI based workforce. Huge neural nets were created to provide those in stasis with a 'more ideal existence' through engineered fictitious lives. Those Haleen who opt to live outside of the stasis are also granted passes to spend time in the neural nets as both currency, privilege, recreation and mental health." Again, Bert paused, though this time it was to allow comments and questions about what he'd said so far.

"Some days that doesn't seem to be a bad ideas." Mercia murmered, "If the life wasn't bad in the head I guess."

"Do the people who live have a choice or are they put in to the network from birth?" Emmah asked.

Mercia looked up, "Not a bad question. The ones who barter for time in the network is one thing, but do the rest of them have any sort of freedom?" she asked.

"Got a point," David agreed as he nodded slightly as he looked between the group. "

"There's a missing piece of context in here. To live outside of the neural net is the punishment. There's little food or clean air or water. It's cramped and joyless from the reports. The population that lives outside would be your equivalent of the lowest tier of working class and the AIs." Bert cleared his throat for a moment, as it was difficult to parse the amount of bad news. Most of the rest, save for councils and religious castes and such, have no ties to the outside world. There are few to no children as they cannot afford to breed due to size constraints. This is a dying people grasping at straws that they might have a wayy to save their world with just enough population to restart it. Sometimes being the most advanced leaves you little room to be human."

Mercia winced, "I wonder even if they begin the process now if it would even be enough to save their society with procreation."She made a face. "Damn I wonder if their plugged in worlds include sex... I couldn't imagine living a whole life with out it!"

Bert colored just a bit at the mention. "That.. is distinctly not in my notes, ma'am."

Mercia smirked at the man, noting h is blush, "Well why don't you add that to your notes of investigation. things to find out?" she said with a teasing glint to her eye, although she had no idea if the man would understand her joke.

"Commander, I fear that may be an invasive question for him to ask." Emmah said frowning.

"Stop being a wet blanket Emmah, have you talked to her about the birds and the bees yet?" she asked David.

This caught David's attention as he perked up to focus completely on Mercia. He then looked between Emmah and Mercia. "Wait... what? Wet blanket... birds and bees... I didn't think she needed to know just yet."

"She might only be four years old David, but she's not your typical child." Mercia said. "I sure as hell am not having that conversation with her. She's more your kid than mine." Mercia blanched at the idea of having to have that conversation with her real child in the years to come. 'Oh God...."

Emmah frowned at the pair, normally enjoying their banter, however she was confused this time.

"Alrighty, lets call it a day, Thank you all for joining us and clearing up some of the information for us," David spoke up as he looked around the room. "WE can call it a day for now."



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