He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by U.P. Cinnabar » 2018-05-03 10:43am

TAS isn't canon?

Probably, they were too fragile to be used for EVA/hostile environment work, and went back to using spacesuits, or knowing Treknology, spacesuits with forcefield backup.
"Beware the Beast, Man, for he is the Devil's pawn. Alone amongst God's primates, he kills for sport, for lust, for greed. Yea, he will murder his brother to possess his brother's land. Let him not breed in great numbers, for he will make a desert of his home and yours. Shun him, drive him back into his jungle lair, for he is the harbinger of Death.."
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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by Tribble » 2018-05-03 10:48am

U.P. Cinnabar wrote:
2018-05-03 10:43am
TAS isn't canon?

Probably, they were too fragile to be used for EVA/hostile environment work, and went back to using spacesuits, or knowing Treknology, spacesuits with forcefield backup.
Yes I know TAS isn't canon, I'm just surprised they didn't use the idea as it could have been a practical solution which also happens to look sciene-fictioney.

Federation space suits don't seem to have force fields as they continue to leak after being punctured.
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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by U.P. Cinnabar » 2018-05-03 12:07pm

True. Forgot about STFC.
"Beware the Beast, Man, for he is the Devil's pawn. Alone amongst God's primates, he kills for sport, for lust, for greed. Yea, he will murder his brother to possess his brother's land. Let him not breed in great numbers, for he will make a desert of his home and yours. Shun him, drive him back into his jungle lair, for he is the harbinger of Death.."
—29th Scroll, 6th Verse of Ape Law

"The Constitution's a piece of paper. A kick in the head is a jolt."
—Stanley "Ray" Kowalski
"Accuse the other side of that which you are guilty."
---NRA motto

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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by Burak Gazan » 2018-05-03 12:14pm

FaxModem1 wrote:
2018-05-03 04:15am
Burak Gazan wrote:
2018-05-02 08:32pm
Funny how The Expanse manages with way less money, and the story never suffers. In fact, it ENHANCES AND REQUIRES IT in some bits
But, hey, Tweknology....
And I'm sure 20 years in special effects advancement making special effects cheaper has nothing to do with it, nosiree Bob.
Sure it did; but they can do it cheaper in the bigshot studios now too, but that doesn't help them break from drowning in bullshit and lens flare replacing writing
"Of course, what would really happen is that in Game 7, with the Red Sox winning 20-0 in the 9th inning, with two outs and two strikes on the last Cubs batter, a previously unseen meteor would strike the earth, instantly and forever wiping out all life on the planet, and forever denying the Red Sox a World Series victory..."

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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by Swindle1984 » 2018-05-03 09:38pm

Tribble wrote:
2018-05-03 12:24am
IIRC in the TNG tech manual the bridge was on top of the hull and detachable so that it could be easily swapped out during an upgrade.

Also the main bridge of the E-D wasn't supposed to be used during battle situations as it was intended that they saucer-separate first, but that didn't happen very often (outside universe this was largely due to the timing of scenes and budget contraints).
Correct on both counts. That modularity is mentioned in-story as a reason why the early production Galaxy-class starships were chosen for the Project Galaxy upgrade, rather than the newer Dominion War-era Galaxy-class starships.

In universe, I think the reason they didn't separate the saucer in battle very often is because the saucer that's full of civilians doesn't have a warp drive and thus cannot flee while the drive section is engaged in battle, and the ship actually has more power for weapons/shields when it's not split in half.
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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by Swindle1984 » 2018-06-10 08:27pm

With the senior officers seated around the conference table, Riker took his seat at the head and glanced at his PADD.

"All right, let's begin with Commander Stolansky. Commander?"

"Yes, sir." Stolansky had removed his helmet and placed it on the table before him. "Concerning ship's operations, I only noted a few minor issues, which I forwarded to you earlier. Being as this is a Federation starship and not an Ascension starship, I do not wish to interfere in shipboard custom or culture too much. However, one change I would like to make is to the duty schedule."

Riker raised an eyebrow, but said nothing, waiting for Stolansky to continue.

"I'm given to understand that most Starfleet vessels operate in three eight hour shifts, which is also standard aboard Ascension vessels. However, given that the Galaxy will be operating a fair distance away from Federation starbases and support for the duration of its mission, I would like to change over to four six hour shifts. I believe this would be more efficient, since it would reduce fatigue for the crew while performing their duties, thereby resulting in better performance and higher morale."

"There is something to be said for that," commented the Doctor. "It would reduce fatigue and increase mental acuity and efficiency. Several Starfleet vessels operate on a four shift schedule. I would like to note that a certain... flexibility in duty schedules would likely be beneficial as well. On Voyager, we had issues with crew fatigue and morale until we loosened regulations a little and allowed crewmen to swap shifts. So long as it was approved by a senior officer beforehand, of course."

Stolansky considered that for a moment, then nodded.

"I would be willing to experiment with that, once we're under way and are certain the crew is performing as needed. Until then, I'm going to insist that everyone report for duty when scheduled, no exceptions, unless there is a valid medical excuse. In the meantime, I've drawn up a rotating schedule; the crew will report for duty at the same time five days a week, but twice a week they'll report for a different duty schedule. This will, hopefully, prevent monotony from setting in, and provide more flexibility in their schedules. For instance, a helmsman who is always assigned to the night shift may not be able to interact with someone who is always assigned to the day shift during off hours; this way, at least twice a week, their schedule is different and they can do things at different times of day. It also prevents crewmen from being dissatisfied with always getting what they perceive as being an undesirable duty schedule."

Deanna nodded appreciatively, adding, "This seems very well thought out. I haven't had time to look at it, but I did see your request to sit down with me and work out who would be best for a particular shift; I would be glad to do that."

"Thank you, counselor. Captain?"

Riker warred with himself internally for a moment, both wanting to give Stolansky a fair chance as first officer and wanting to do things his way, then said, "I prefer the three shift duty schedule. However, your idea does have merit. I'd be willing to give it a shot, but I'm concerned that there would be issues with people adjusting to the new schedule."

"Hence why I would like to implement it immediately, to get people used to it before we depart for stars unknown. I think the crew will adjust more easily than you expect; this essentially gives everyone more free time, and once they get used to working their shift at a particular time of day, they won't have any real issues."

".... Alright, go ahead and implement it then. We'll try it out for... two weeks, and if the crew is still having trouble adjusting, we'll go back to the three shift schedule."

"Very well. Next, I'd like to implement some changes to our security culture aboard ship."

"Security culture?"

"Security is very lax on Federation starships. I would like all bridge officers to wear a sidearm while on duty, and place a security officer at the turbolift leading to the bridge and two officers at the entry to main engineering."

"Don't you think that's a little overkill?"

"No, sir. Standard Ascension protocol is that all on-duty personnel are armed, and all vital areas of the ship are constantly guarded by shipboard marines. The bridge, engineering, shuttle bay, missile magazines, and so on. While reviewing files from a number of different starships, I noted a disturbing tendency for intruders to board Starfleet vessels. This would be a proactive security measure. There's-"

"I don't believe that's necessary at this time, commander. I'll take it under consideration, however. Was there anything else?"

"... no, sir. I believe I'll hand things over to the department heads now."

"Good. Engineering? How are we looking?"

The Doctor leaned over and whispered in Stolansky's ear, "You still owe me a physical. Tonight?"

Stolansky nodded dismissively, scrolling through his PADD and trying to pay attention to the rest of the meeting. He had a lot of work to do, and little patience for distractions.

-----------------------------

Stolansky sat on the biobed impatiently as the Doctor ran a tricorder over him.

"Well, commander, your medical records were quite thorough. Everything seems to be lining up rather nicely. Now, about this particle beam incident? I understand there was brain damage?"

"Was, doctor. Ascension medicine is quite excellent, though I will admit you've made some advances we missed. I suppose that's what happens when you focus on infrastructure rather than R&D."

"Hmm. Your doctors did an excellent job; I can't find any evidence of a particle beam passing through your head at all. Other than the nerve damage to your face, it seems they managed to repair everything."

"It was only a glancing hit," Stolansky said wryly. "This is why I give particle accelerators and the junior officers operating them a wide berth now."

"Can I ask why the facial damage wasn't repaired? If you can heal a brain and skull damaged by heat and radiation, surely you can repair facial nerves," the Doctor said as he waved something like a squared off tuning fork in a circle around Stolansky's eye.

"Resources. That's why we've focused on developing infrastructure and acquiring resources. We don't have the large population or pool of materials the Federation does, and some things are quite scarce. We've learned to make do with a more austere lifestyle, and anything that isn't absolutely necessary isn't bothered with. In this case, the damage to my face is purely cosmetic; it doesn't affect my vision, hearing, or speech, so why bother fixing it? The doctor has more important things to devote his time to, and the medical supplies that could be used to fix a face that sags ever so slightly on one side could be used to cure a child with partial paralysis. We tend not to prioritize the little things."

"Hmm. Well, lucky for you that you were assigned as a liaison officer then. Here in Starfleet, we're thorough enough to handle the little things too."

Stolansky gave the Doctor an aside glance and asked, "How long would it take to fix the damage? I'm quite busy-"

"I already fixed it. Right now I'm just getting a more fine-tuned reading of your hypothalamus."

Taken aback, Stolansky stood and donned his helmet again.

"Thank you, doctor. That wasn't necessary, but it is appreciated. Unless there's anything else, I need to return to duty. There's a lot to do before we can get underway."

"I'm all done here, commander. Run along, I'll have my department report ready for you by 0600 tomorrow."

Stolansky stepped out of sickbay, glanced at the time readout on his HUD, and grimaced. He hated doctor's visits, and while that one had taken only ten minutes, he really was quite busy. He had to keep a handle on the operations of a massive starship and learn a new way of doing things in the process.

Stepping into the turbolift, he ordered it to take him to astrometrics. The science division was the one department behind schedule, and he firmly intended to correct that.

Pausing for a moment, he ran one hand down the face of his helmet unconsciously as he tried to feel any difference in his face. He felt none. The slight sag to the one side of his face was really only perceptible if you were standing closely, and as he'd said, it didn't impede him any. He doubted anyone else would notice the difference. It was such a little thing. But still. To just fix something like that so casually both made him envy the Federation and resent it. The Ascension could have done it, but wouldn't; why waste time and energy on something that was unnecessary and basically amounted to pure vanity? One day the Ascension would be as prosperous and powerful; they were nearly there.

The door opened and he strode into the corridor, ready to ream out a certain lieutenant who was grossly behind on getting astrometrics up and running, his face already forgotten.
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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by B5B7 » 2018-06-10 11:18pm

The dayshift/nightshift thing in Star Trek, as many people have previously mentioned elsewhere is silly. Whenever an important encounter occurs in Star Trek it almost invariably occurs during the dayshift. Another thing that I have noticed is that the person sitting in the command chair is often doing nothing. This would get monotonous and is also inefficient.
Stolansky gave the Doctor an aside glance and asked, "How long would it take to fix the damage? I'm quite busy-"

"I already fixed it. Right now I'm just getting a more fine-tuned reading of your hypothalamus."
The Doctor should ask permission first. Imagine if someone has a Heidelberg scar and the Doctor simply removes it without checking with the patient first!
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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by Burak Gazan » 2018-06-10 11:28pm

Trek, despite Gino being a sailor, was hilariously fucking retarded when it came to watch bills. As an actual merchant sailor, we did 4 on, 8 off. But over time +/- 2 before and after possible. Yeah it can be tiring. But 8 fucking hours in watch? Jesus. You'd be half asleep staring at the lights and dials. Also, can't help but wonder, if Willy is asshurt over the 4 shift thing; some other Captain told him to do that, remember? :twisted:
"Of course, what would really happen is that in Game 7, with the Red Sox winning 20-0 in the 9th inning, with two outs and two strikes on the last Cubs batter, a previously unseen meteor would strike the earth, instantly and forever wiping out all life on the planet, and forever denying the Red Sox a World Series victory..."

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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by U.P. Cinnabar » 2018-06-11 06:40am

B5B7 wrote:
2018-06-10 11:18pm
The dayshift/nightshift thing in Star Trek, as many people have previously mentioned elsewhere is silly. Whenever an important encounter occurs in Star Trek it almost invariably occurs during the dayshift. Another thing that I have noticed is that the person sitting in the command chair is often doing nothing. This would get monotonous and is also inefficient.
Stolansky gave the Doctor an aside glance and asked, "How long would it take to fix the damage? I'm quite busy-"

"I already fixed it. Right now I'm just getting a more fine-tuned reading of your hypothalamus."
The Doctor should ask permission first. Imagine if someone has a Heidelberg scar and the Doctor simply removes it without checking with the patient first!
It's in character for the Doctor. Also, night shifts on Voyager got pretty interesting sometimes.
"Beware the Beast, Man, for he is the Devil's pawn. Alone amongst God's primates, he kills for sport, for lust, for greed. Yea, he will murder his brother to possess his brother's land. Let him not breed in great numbers, for he will make a desert of his home and yours. Shun him, drive him back into his jungle lair, for he is the harbinger of Death.."
—29th Scroll, 6th Verse of Ape Law

"The Constitution's a piece of paper. A kick in the head is a jolt."
—Stanley "Ray" Kowalski
"Accuse the other side of that which you are guilty."
---NRA motto

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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by U.P. Cinnabar » 2018-06-11 06:42am

Burak Gazan wrote:
2018-06-10 11:28pm
Trek, despite Gino being a sailor, was hilariously fucking retarded when it came to watch bills. As an actual merchant sailor, we did 4 on, 8 off. But over time +/- 2 before and after possible. Yeah it can be tiring. But 8 fucking hours in watch? Jesus. You'd be half asleep staring at the lights and dials. Also, can't help but wonder, if Willy is asshurt over the 4 shift thing; some other Captain told him to do that, remember? :twisted:
If you meant Roddenberry, he was in the Army Air Forces, not the Navy. Flew B-17s if memory serves.

Jellicoe, in "Chain Of Command," told Riker to set four sixes, rather than three eights. Four six hour shifts are the norm in the British Royal Navy, and, I believe, in the USN, as well.
"Beware the Beast, Man, for he is the Devil's pawn. Alone amongst God's primates, he kills for sport, for lust, for greed. Yea, he will murder his brother to possess his brother's land. Let him not breed in great numbers, for he will make a desert of his home and yours. Shun him, drive him back into his jungle lair, for he is the harbinger of Death.."
—29th Scroll, 6th Verse of Ape Law

"The Constitution's a piece of paper. A kick in the head is a jolt."
—Stanley "Ray" Kowalski
"Accuse the other side of that which you are guilty."
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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by Burak Gazan » 2018-06-11 06:04pm

Oh, I remember Captain Jellicoe. I wonder if Willy does too, since a) he made him do THIS and b) it IS a smarter way likely for warships. One thing on any ship, you will be tired. Depending on the runs, so tired, that on lake or open sea, you have to tell your AB to poke you if you stop talking while sitting in the front window at times... :P
"Of course, what would really happen is that in Game 7, with the Red Sox winning 20-0 in the 9th inning, with two outs and two strikes on the last Cubs batter, a previously unseen meteor would strike the earth, instantly and forever wiping out all life on the planet, and forever denying the Red Sox a World Series victory..."

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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by Swindle1984 » 2018-06-11 09:40pm

We see several instances in TNG and VOY where something occurred during the night shift or otherwise when they had to call senior officers to the bridge.

And yes, Jellico ordered Riker to switch from 3 to 4 shifts, and Riker got all butthurt and just ignored the order. Then had the audacity to cop an attitude when Jellico called him out on it. Hence, why Riker is conflicted over it: he doesn't want to be a dick and wants to let Stolansky run the ship his way, since that's his job, but he also, well, likes doing things his way.

Honestly, Jellico was one of the most competent Starfleet captains we've seen to date.
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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by Burak Gazan » 2018-06-11 09:43pm

HIS way is also a polite way of saying, he's an overcontrolling douchebag who can't trust his XO, and by extension, anyone else to do their jobs. Lovely trait for a captain. Worked with several like. Wouldn't have fucking pissed on them if on fire , and if keeled over on the bridge, wait fucking 20 minutes before summoning aid. Yeah. Not real morale-boosting fuckers like that
"Of course, what would really happen is that in Game 7, with the Red Sox winning 20-0 in the 9th inning, with two outs and two strikes on the last Cubs batter, a previously unseen meteor would strike the earth, instantly and forever wiping out all life on the planet, and forever denying the Red Sox a World Series victory..."

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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by FaxModem1 » 2018-06-11 09:46pm

Swindle1984 wrote:
2018-06-11 09:40pm
We see several instances in TNG and VOY where something occurred during the night shift or otherwise when they had to call senior officers to the bridge.

And yes, Jellico ordered Riker to switch from 3 to 4 shifts, and Riker got all butthurt and just ignored the order. Then had the audacity to cop an attitude when Jellico called him out on it. Hence, why Riker is conflicted over it: he doesn't want to be a dick and wants to let Stolansky run the ship his way, since that's his job, but he also, well, likes doing things his way.

Honestly, Jellico was one of the most competent Starfleet captains we've seen to date.
Yeah, I was never clear if in Chain of Command if Riker just hadn't instituted it yet or he really was countermanding his captain there because he didn't get along with Jellico.
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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by Burak Gazan » 2018-06-11 10:09pm

Jean -LUCK PICKARD, let Slick Willy get away with bloody fucking murder. No real captain would have tolerated his shit. Can you imagine, how Jim Kirk, OUR Kirk, the young one, would have dealt with this overblown fucking bloatego?? Yeah. He'd have relieved him of duty and let him play with himself in his quarters , until the next Starbase, or his court-martial. Whichever came first
"Of course, what would really happen is that in Game 7, with the Red Sox winning 20-0 in the 9th inning, with two outs and two strikes on the last Cubs batter, a previously unseen meteor would strike the earth, instantly and forever wiping out all life on the planet, and forever denying the Red Sox a World Series victory..."

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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by FaxModem1 » 2018-06-26 05:12am

You know, I just had a thought. Stolansky is supposing that his society could become as prosperous as the Federation, but do they have the mindset to do so? The Ascension is based on the superiority of their Augments, and of uplifting the client races they bring into their ranks. However, there's a keen focus on what their ideal is as a nation, and fear of differences, to a violent extreme.

Such a mindset can hinder research, trade, development, as well as embracing of new ideas. The Federation is the opposite, openly embracing new ideas (with exceptions, due to some historical prejudices that they're working on). Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations.

Would the Ascension take into consideration if say, the Bolians, who prize hygiene and plumbing as the peak of a civilization's priority, was brought into their fold, and embrace the new ways to do things that are better, or would they trample overfoot and bring them to Ascension standard, letting that outlook be lost? What would the Ascension lose in the field of infrastructure that the Federation gained? Might that be why the Federation is advancing faster?
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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by Swindle1984 » 2018-08-08 08:04pm

FaxModem1 wrote:
2018-06-26 05:12am
You know, I just had a thought. Stolansky is supposing that his society could become as prosperous as the Federation, but do they have the mindset to do so? The Ascension is based on the superiority of their Augments, and of uplifting the client races they bring into their ranks. However, there's a keen focus on what their ideal is as a nation, and fear of differences, to a violent extreme.

Such a mindset can hinder research, trade, development, as well as embracing of new ideas. The Federation is the opposite, openly embracing new ideas (with exceptions, due to some historical prejudices that they're working on). Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations.

Would the Ascension take into consideration if say, the Bolians, who prize hygiene and plumbing as the peak of a civilization's priority, was brought into their fold, and embrace the new ways to do things that are better, or would they trample overfoot and bring them to Ascension standard, letting that outlook be lost? What would the Ascension lose in the field of infrastructure that the Federation gained? Might that be why the Federation is advancing faster?
These are some excellent points, but the main reason the Ascension are lagging behind in technology and resources is that they literally started with nothing but a handful of starships that took decades to get anywhere, were eventually caught up to by early warp vessels, and then colonized a planet with absolutely horrific conditions because it was the only one they could find. When you're starting from scratch, with just the population you can squeeze into a couple of sleeper ships (and a dying race you picked up along the way), you tend to lag behind the guys who didn't spend the better part of a century as popsicles, have an entire planet full of infrastructure and people, an even more advanced race guiding you along, orbital shipyards, etc.

But yes, we can expect to see the Ascension be very narrow in their development, barring any major shifts in their cultural mindset. The fact that people who view unrestricted warfare as perfectly reasonable and spent centuries believing the Federation would exterminate them if they discovered who they were still restrained themselves (somewhat) during a war with the Federation and switched from fighting to the death to a negotiated settlement (even if said negotiations involved everyone pointing guns at everyone else's heads) is a major shift for them. I won't really be covering it in this story, since that's not the focus, but the natural flow for this setting is for the Ascension to either get taken over by hardliners in favor of the old way of thinking, or go through a series of upheavals as their society becomes open to new ideas and possibilities after centuries of isolation and paranoia.
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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by Swindle1984 » 2018-08-08 10:03pm

WARNING: From this point forward, the story will feature graphic scenes depicting violence, sexual situations, and disturbing material. This is your one and only "trigger" warning. Future chapters featuring graphic scenes may or may not (depending on whether I think it's needed) feature a warning beforehand. There will be horrific shit in this and future chapters. I'm going to try not to go overboard with it since the point of the story isn't mindless gore and rape scenes, but the idea is to really drive home the fact that the Federation is going to encounter some very not-nice people.

-----------------------------------------

Commander Stolansky sat on the bridge, scrolling through performance reports. The Galaxy had set off to explore the far reaches of the Alpha Quadrant nearly a month ago, and already he was bored with quasar studies and planetary surveys.

"Lieutenant, tell me more about this 'Alpha Flyer'," he said, not looking up from his PADD. He much preferred to read using the heads-up display in his helmet, but he wasn't about to link a Federation device to Ascension technology for security reasons.

Wesley turned around to face the commander as he began pontificating.

"The Delta Flyer was designed to meet the needs-"

"I'm familiar with the background. Tell me more about the Alpha Flyer specifically."

"Well, sir, it's faster than a shuttle or runabout, has better defenses, and is specially designed for long-term endurance while scouting ahead of the Galaxy. A runabout can carry more passengers, or if it's a specialized variation can carry the same sensor package as the Alpha Flyer, but the Alpha Flyer is overall a better ship for exploration, especially if it's going to be traveling several days ahead of the ship."

"I see. Having a smaller, faster vessel to scout ahead of the ship is an excellent idea. But the Alpha Flyer won't be available for another month?"

"At least. They're running into a few problems with the warp field generated by the nacelles interfering with the warp core's stability; the engines are just a little too powerful and unstable. That's why the Galaxy is carrying a runabout, to provide us with a scout until the Alpha Flyer is available."

"I'd like to begin making more use of that scout; it would be beneficial to know which systems warrant a closer look before we get to them. So far we've only dispatched it to look at things the ship's sensors detected at long range."

"Yes sir," Wesley nodded, turning back to his console. "And I could use the practice in the runabout before we get the Alpha Flyer; I'm told it's a real hot rod."

"Very well, lieutenant; since you need the practice, why don't you assemble a crew and take the runabout ahead? I want regular reports in hourly intervals, and catalogue each system you scan in terms of priority for the Galaxy."

"Yes, sir!" Wesley said, beaming. As soon as an ensign stepped onto the bridge to replace him at the helm, Wesley was in the turbolift, mentally assigning his away team as he went.

Stolansky returned his full attention to his PADD, grumbling inaudibly to himself. He didn't like Lt. Crusher; he was too cocksure and a little too eager to lecture everyone. But he had to admit that he was competent and his enthusiasm was hardly his worst trait. If he just had a little more humility and experience, he'd probably be an excellent crewman. Ah well; give him time.

---------------------------

Three days had passed since Wesley Crusher had departed in the runabout. All had gone well until very recently; the runabout crew had missed two hourly check-ins in a row. After the second failure to report in, Stolansky had ordered the comm officer to hail the runabout and not gotten a response.

"Bridge to Captain Riker."

"Riker here."

"Captain, the runabout has failed to check in twice and is not answering hails. I'm going to cancel our stellar survey and take the Galaxy to their last known position."

"Understood. Keep me informed."

"Roger-wilco."

"And Commander?"

"Sir?"

"Please just talk normally."

Stolansky paused for a moment, decided from his tone that Riker was giving him some good-natured ribbing, then mentally rolled his eyes and got on with his job.

"Yes sir. Helm, set a course for the runabout's last known position. Warp factor-"

"Commander," interrupted his tactical officer. "We're receiving a hail from the runabout."

"About damned time," Stolansky muttered. There'd better be a good reason for the delay, he thought. "Onscreen."

The scene that greeted them on the view screen, larger than life, was a complete shock to everyone on the bridge.

The scene was just outside the runabout, by the rear ramp. Wesley Crusher had been stripped naked and crucified on an X made of logs crudely cut and fixed together, and was screaming in agony. Two humanoids wearing what appeared to be leather surcoats over chainmail stepped into view, their thick golden manes nearly obscuring their toothy grins. They looked very much like humanoid lions, the way their hair and facial hair was styled.

"Greetings, to the new cattle of the People! Allow us to make clear your place in the natural order of things!"

With that, one drew a curved knife from his waist and neatly castrated Wesley, including his penis, in one swift stroke. Wesley screamed at such a high pitch that his voice cracked, before mercifully passing out from the pain. The pair of aliens laughed, one of them rubbing Wesley's face with his own genitals, smearing blood everywhere, before tossing the severed organs aside and beckoning to someone offscreen.

"Helm, get us there, maximum warp! Captain to the bridge! Emergency!"

A third alien stepped into view, holding another member of the runabout crew. Stolansky couldn't remember her name, just that she was a biologist Wesley had picked out. He'd been in combat and seen seriously wounded and dead people; even he was shocked at what he was seeing.

The poor woman had also been stripped naked, and had all four limbs removed and the wounds crudely cauterized to stop the bleeding. She was roughly tossed onto her stomach atop a short table, and the alien that had carried her over began removing his pants as she begged for them to stop.

"Get that off the viewscreen! Transfer to my PADD."

The rest of the bridge crew was spared from seeing what happened next, as the three aliens took their turns violating the woman, laughing and mocking her the entire time. Stolansky watched, and burned with murderous rage. When the third one had had his turn, another casually drew a short sword from his belt and decapitated their now catatonic victim. He then approached the camera and held it close to his face.

"Do you understand your role in the universe now? If not, we'd be glad to teach you again."

With a final laugh, he drew some kind of pistol and ended the transmission in a green flash.

"Tactical, raise shields, arm phasers, and load torpedoes. Time to arrival?"

"Still another hour, sir. The runabout had a good head start on us."

Riker stepped onto the bridge, about to ask what was going on, and noticed the pale, horrified expressions of his crew. Stolansky's expressionless black visor turned to look him in the eye.

"Captain, perhaps you should see this in your ready room."

----------------------

Riker sat at the conference table, drumming his fingers angrily. Deanna didn't even attempt to calm him down; in all the time she'd known him, she'd seen Will in a murderous rage exactly twice, and both times he'd had it more or less under control. This time, she didn't think he could hold back even if he'd wanted to.

"Do we have any idea who these people are?"

"No sir," Stolansky replied. "We've never encountered their species before. And they left before we arrived, so we don't know what their ship looks like."

If Deanna was walking on eggshells to avoid her husband's rage, the commander scared her even more. The commander had initially shown signs of anger and shock, but all emotion had drained from him in some sort of defensive reflex. All that remained was intent. Given the opportunity, Stolansky would kill those responsible, regardless of whether or not he felt angry about it. That disturbed her. It was if he'd simply... calmly ticked off a checkmark on a list of things to do, then added "kill" at the end. Even the Romulans she'd been around weren't so cold about it.

Nurse Nikita Fukuda was filling in for the Doctor, who was currently in surgery.

"Lieutenant Crusher is in stable condition; the Doctor believes he can restore the... severed organs, but he's sustained a lot of trauma. He'll need time to recover after surgery before he's able to tell us what happened."

"And what condition is Ensign Woodrow's... body, in?"

"The, uh, limbs are missing and unaccounted for. Her head was mounted on a stake next to Lt. Crusher's crucifix. The torso showed signs of... of..."

"They ate her," Stolansky stated dispassionately. Deanna couldn't feel any emotion from him whatsoever; definitely some sort of coping mechanism. "The breasts, liver, heart, and buttocks all show signs of partial or complete consumption. Then they defecated inside her abdominal cavity. The other three runabout crew members... there's no sign. Scans do indicate traces indicative of humanoid masses being disintegrated by weapons similar to a..." he paused for a moment, evidently bringing up information in his helmet's HUD. "A Varon-T disruptor. I'm not familiar with that weapon."

"I am," Riker said, turning an alarming shade of maroon under his beard. "It's a barbaric weapon. Outlawed in the Federation, Klingon Empire, and Romulan Empire for its inhumane method of killing. It's intentionally designed to disintegrate someone as slowly and painfully as possible."

"Ah. It must be pretty bad then, if even the Klingons and Romulans consider it worth banning. That fits with the behavior of these... creatures," Stolansky commented. "They were intentionally cruel for the sake of cruelty. Do we have any idea as to their motivation?"

Deanna shook her head.

"No. We don't know if we provoked them in some way, or if there was some other reason behind it. Until Wesley wakes up, we won't get a clear picture of what happened."

"Counselor, sometimes there is no reason for these sorts of things."

"What do you mean, Commander?"

"Bad people don't need a reason to do bad things. They just do it because it amuses them, or because they have nothing better to do."

"That may be true, but there's always an underlying reason for someone's behavior. Until we know their motivation, we can't say for sure-"

"Counselor," Stolansky interrupted. "Are you suggesting there could be something capable of excusing their behavior? Did Lieutenant Crusher perhaps piss on a sacred meadow and thereby justify torture, mutilation, rape, murder, and cannibalism?"

"Not at all," Deanna said, coloring slightly. "I'm simply saying that, regardless of what one's moral compass may be, there's usually a reason behind their actions. Perhaps we did provoke them somehow. I'm not saying it justifies what they did, just that we might be able to understand why they did it."

"Speculation is pointless," Riker said, still gritting his teeth. "As much as I'd like to hunt down these people and make them pay for what they've done, Starfleet can't afford yet another conflict. We're going to avoid this region of space until further notice, and we won't be making any more excursions in the runabout for the foreseeable future."

"We're not going after them?" Stolansky asked, genuinely surprised.

"No. We're going to stay away from them and avoid conflict."

"With all due respect, captain, there's already a conflict. They threw away any possibility of avoiding conflict when they raped, murdered, and ate one of our people, murdered three more, and castrated another. The only logical response is to track them down and ensure their compatriots know never to cross us again."

"I don't think that's-"

The rest of the meeting devolved into a full-blown argument until the Doctor appeared on the viewscreen, watching bemused for a moment before dryly commenting, "If I'm not interrupting, Mr. Crusher is out of surgery. The operation was a success. He should be fully recovered within the hour."

"Thank you, Doctor. Please inform me as soon as he's available for debriefing," Riker replied.

"I should warn you, he's been through a deeply traumatic experience. He may not be ready for a debriefing for quite some time, and when he does feel ready, he, well..."

"We understand, Doctor. Thank you. I'll be there to help Wesley deal with his... experience, during the debriefing."

"Thank you, Counselor. Now, if you'll excuse me, I'll be writing my report on the, er, incident."

Deanna leaned back, rubbing her temples, feeling the mother of all headaches building as the emotions of those around her threatened to overwhelm her senses. Stolansky arguing for immediate retaliation to prevent future attacks, Riker arguing for avoidance while internally agreeing with Stolansky, and the rest of the senior staff just sitting there uncomfortably, still trying to deal with what they'd seen. She was already certain the ensign manning the helm during the incident was going to need therapy just from seeing what'd been happening before Stolansky had the good sense to get it off the main view screen.

This was not going to be a good day, she decided.
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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by B5B7 » 2018-08-08 11:08pm

Typical Federation (especially the Enterprise) response is for the ship to try to find the aliens, but some other space nations would have as usual protocol that the ship return to report and then return with a fleet. It looks like Riker has committed Star Fleet to following this second option (and no doubt someone can point to episodes where the Federation did the second).

Troi is actually right in that as a general rule that which is classified as evil behaviour done by a society or a part of that society is usually cultural and not biological/innate, and that their actions have some form of to them justified reason (this type of thing is not atypical of that of many mercenary bands during earlier centuries). Even if committing horrible acts, whilst doing it for the joy of it can be a major aspect it is usually not the sole motivator, especially when dealing with large groups, not simply individuals.
Can even have sub-groups adopting different modes of action - contrast the actions of the Japanese navy to that of the army during the second world war - different codes of conduct.

The aliens are acting rather precipitously - issuing a challenge. Do they realize what they are dealing with? Are they used to encountering ships that are of single planet origin? Is this ship even a general representative of their society (most likely yes) or an equivalent of pirates?
Considering that they are unknown aliens it is most likely that they are just a small power at best, and that they have just stung a giant.
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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by U.P. Cinnabar » 2018-08-09 12:42am

"The only object of persecution is persecution, the only object of torture is torture, the only object of power is power."

--George Orwell

They did what they did, because they could, and justified this by declaring their victims inferior.

And, I doubt these bastards have only attacked the Feds. Probably the Klingons, the Roms, the Carries, even the Dominion and the Ascension, leading to an all-out galactic war, and to the question of genocide being on the table.

After all, the Feds went that far during the Dominion War. Next time, Starfleet and S31 aren't likely to be brimful off the milk of human kindness.
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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by FaxModem1 » 2018-08-09 05:02am

HOLY FUCKING SHIT :shock:

Initial reaction, I'm glad Wesley is alive, and....intact. Poor guy is gonna need some counseling and down time.

Okay......not something I enjoy in my escapist utopia Trek.....but let's discuss this.

At appearance, this seems something akin to what Nausicaans do, in that they enjoy games of pain, on others and themselves, and are a general race of pirates, mercenaries, and fighters. Unlike the Nausicaans, this is beyond the pale. A functioning raider style warband like this would have problems developing spaceflight on it's own, due to the problems of developing technological development while advocating only the physically strongest survive and raping/eating those who aren't.

This means it's probable that this is either a subset of that race who have descended into barbarism, for whatever reason, like the Reavers from Firefly due to a biological weapon, or have been uplifted by another race, for whatever reason, into being technologically capable, like the Kazon from Voyager due to being a slave race for the Trabe. Both groups were shown to be falling apart technologically, as they couldn't maintain their technology, due to the lack of adherence to proper maintenance, education, engineering, research, etc. Both were a problem for the local neighborhood, while also being a problem that would, without intervention, solve itself over a generation due to their lack of competence.

However, the 'People' could also be presenting some sort of barbaric front to their neighbors, in order to try and facilitate a predetermined response. Whether due to xenophobia, cultural necessity of superiority, or internal cultural mandate. They could also be entirely different creatures within their 'civilization'. This could be similar to the Ascension, in fear of neighbors, whether through invasion or cultural contamination, do whatever they can to keep them out, so they present such a show to keep them out. This runs into the problem of psychology, as the natural response to such a move, if on equal or greater strength, is to fight back and end such a threat, as coexistence is not possible in such a scenario.

As for Starfleet's response.....Riker would probably act like Picard did while on any sort of hostile mission from the Romulans or some other first contact. Inform Starfleet, wait on pending response while still doing what he can to get his people back. Like it or not, the 'People' potentially have Starfleet hostages, that means that Riker's ship has to get involved and rescue them. It's possible that they killed all three remaining members of the away team, but it's also possible, and likely, that they took at least one of the crew prisoner. Riker and company would be aware of this. One thing we have constantly noted over the course of Trek is that Starfleet gets it's people back. They are NOT going to let them be the prisoners of such people. I imagine scanning for the trail of the vessel and finding where they went would be the number one priority.

As noted above, Troi is right in that they need to understand WHY the People do what they do, in order to better deal with them, whether in combat, negotiation, or subjugation. After all, if this is just the equivalent of a family of rednecks, isolated and separate compared to the rest of the People, it would be good to know that.

Sidenote: good to hear that the Alpha Flyer is going to become a Starfleet standard.
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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by Swindle1984 » 2018-08-09 07:29pm

B5B7 wrote:
2018-08-08 11:08pm
Typical Federation (especially the Enterprise) response is for the ship to try to find the aliens, but some other space nations would have as usual protocol that the ship return to report and then return with a fleet. It looks like Riker has committed Star Fleet to following this second option (and no doubt someone can point to episodes where the Federation did the second).

Troi is actually right in that as a general rule that which is classified as evil behaviour done by a society or a part of that society is usually cultural and not biological/innate, and that their actions have some form of to them justified reason (this type of thing is not atypical of that of many mercenary bands during earlier centuries). Even if committing horrible acts, whilst doing it for the joy of it can be a major aspect it is usually not the sole motivator, especially when dealing with large groups, not simply individuals.
Can even have sub-groups adopting different modes of action - contrast the actions of the Japanese navy to that of the army during the second world war - different codes of conduct.

The aliens are acting rather precipitously - issuing a challenge. Do they realize what they are dealing with? Are they used to encountering ships that are of single planet origin? Is this ship even a general representative of their society (most likely yes) or an equivalent of pirates?
Considering that they are unknown aliens it is most likely that they are just a small power at best, and that they have just stung a giant.
Excellent points, just about all of which will be addressed within the story. Interesting that you bring up the Japanese in WW2; I'm actually going somewhere with that. Possibly not where you expect, but now that I've said it, I'm sure you can guess.


FaxModem1 wrote:
2018-08-09 05:02am
HOLY FUCKING SHIT :shock:

Initial reaction, I'm glad Wesley is alive, and....intact. Poor guy is gonna need some counseling and down time.

Okay......not something I enjoy in my escapist utopia Trek.....but let's discuss this.

At appearance, this seems something akin to what Nausicaans do, in that they enjoy games of pain, on others and themselves, and are a general race of pirates, mercenaries, and fighters. Unlike the Nausicaans, this is beyond the pale. A functioning raider style warband like this would have problems developing spaceflight on it's own, due to the problems of developing technological development while advocating only the physically strongest survive and raping/eating those who aren't.

This means it's probable that this is either a subset of that race who have descended into barbarism, for whatever reason, like the Reavers from Firefly due to a biological weapon, or have been uplifted by another race, for whatever reason, into being technologically capable, like the Kazon from Voyager due to being a slave race for the Trabe. Both groups were shown to be falling apart technologically, as they couldn't maintain their technology, due to the lack of adherence to proper maintenance, education, engineering, research, etc. Both were a problem for the local neighborhood, while also being a problem that would, without intervention, solve itself over a generation due to their lack of competence.

However, the 'People' could also be presenting some sort of barbaric front to their neighbors, in order to try and facilitate a predetermined response. Whether due to xenophobia, cultural necessity of superiority, or internal cultural mandate. They could also be entirely different creatures within their 'civilization'. This could be similar to the Ascension, in fear of neighbors, whether through invasion or cultural contamination, do whatever they can to keep them out, so they present such a show to keep them out. This runs into the problem of psychology, as the natural response to such a move, if on equal or greater strength, is to fight back and end such a threat, as coexistence is not possible in such a scenario.

As for Starfleet's response.....Riker would probably act like Picard did while on any sort of hostile mission from the Romulans or some other first contact. Inform Starfleet, wait on pending response while still doing what he can to get his people back. Like it or not, the 'People' potentially have Starfleet hostages, that means that Riker's ship has to get involved and rescue them. It's possible that they killed all three remaining members of the away team, but it's also possible, and likely, that they took at least one of the crew prisoner. Riker and company would be aware of this. One thing we have constantly noted over the course of Trek is that Starfleet gets it's people back. They are NOT going to let them be the prisoners of such people. I imagine scanning for the trail of the vessel and finding where they went would be the number one priority.

As noted above, Troi is right in that they need to understand WHY the People do what they do, in order to better deal with them, whether in combat, negotiation, or subjugation. After all, if this is just the equivalent of a family of rednecks, isolated and separate compared to the rest of the People, it would be good to know that.

Sidenote: good to hear that the Alpha Flyer is going to become a Starfleet standard.

Also excellent points. Honestly, this is a higher grade of analysis and discussion than I'm used to my stories getting.

You're off on a couple of your assumptions, but dead on with everything else. Unfortunately, I can't go into detail without spoiling future installments, so I'll have to leave it at that. Suffice to say, however, that all will be revealed.




I'm looking forward to continued discussion as the story progresses. The next chapter will likely be posted within a week.
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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by FaxModem1 » 2018-08-15 09:13am

Swindle1984 wrote:
2018-08-09 07:29pm
Also excellent points. Honestly, this is a higher grade of analysis and discussion than I'm used to my stories getting.

You're off on a couple of your assumptions, but dead on with everything else. Unfortunately, I can't go into detail without spoiling future installments, so I'll have to leave it at that. Suffice to say, however, that all will be revealed.

I'm looking forward to continued discussion as the story progresses. The next chapter will likely be posted within a week.
(Sean Connery accent) This is SDN, boy. Analyzing and discussion is what we do.(/accent)

I'm looking forward to where this story is going intellectually. Just not really looking forward to seeing heroes from some of my favorite TV shows horribly maimed, tortured, or raped. That does nothing for me.
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Re: He Who Fights Monsters (Star Trek)

Post by Swindle1984 » 2018-08-19 12:47am

FaxModem1 wrote:
2018-08-15 09:13am
Swindle1984 wrote:
2018-08-09 07:29pm
Also excellent points. Honestly, this is a higher grade of analysis and discussion than I'm used to my stories getting.

You're off on a couple of your assumptions, but dead on with everything else. Unfortunately, I can't go into detail without spoiling future installments, so I'll have to leave it at that. Suffice to say, however, that all will be revealed.

I'm looking forward to continued discussion as the story progresses. The next chapter will likely be posted within a week.
(Sean Connery accent) This is SDN, boy. Analyzing and discussion is what we do.(/accent)

I'm looking forward to where this story is going intellectually. Just not really looking forward to seeing heroes from some of my favorite TV shows horribly maimed, tortured, or raped. That does nothing for me.
As I said, I have no intention of going overboard with it. Just enough to show what sort of people the Federation is dealing with.
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