((Amity Outpost - Science and Research Center))
Kivik: Looks like a good jumping off point. ::Grabbing nir PADD:: What say we head to the holodeck and start getting our hands dirty?
The group began packing up and heading for the holodeck, the urgency in their preparations apparent by the speed with which they moved.
Ariadust: Makes sense. ::nods as she heads to the holodeck.:: Creating this will be a relief after dealing with that lava-drowned man.
Kivik: ::A puzzled expression:: Could you elaborate, Lieutenant? I don’t think we’re familiar with that phrase.
Ariadust shook her head. The group walked on, listening to her explanation.
Ariadust: It's an expression - sometimes the UT doesn't transliterate, it translates. It's a reference to the story of the death of the Goddess of the Steps. Back in the reign of the Empress Ceciri the Wise - yes, I'm named after her -,::unconsciously her voice fell into a cadence as they walked to the holodeck:: when the stars were young, and it was of use to cast a spell, the followers of the Goddess of the Steps demanded that she keep the caste system that her mother's mother and mother's mother mother created. However, it had began to hold back the meritorious from imperial service, and she abolished it. In response, they declared insurrection. Such an insult to the Beloved of the Fairies could not be borne, and many, who had suffered in the castes, took up her banner, and defeated the army. But the followers, and their families, would not relent from their beliefs.
oO This is a remarkably rich mythology Oo thought Kivik, considering the relative blandness of J’naii legend.
Ariadust continued and Kivik thought ne saw - no certainly did see - fangs appear in the Lieutenant’s mouth. oO Perhaps they were retracted? Oo ne wondered, so intrigued that ne forgot such things would normally make nem nervous.
Ariadust: Even after a fervent appeal, they declared that they would follow the old ways, and honor their Goddess, whose temple they would defend to the death. The Empress merely nodded, and the next day, with a prayer to the Goddess of the Mountains, killed them all under a lava flow, slaying the Goddess and her followers who dared defy the Beloved of the Fairies. And she reigned long, with no obstacle to her happiness until the Fairies took her away to the Fields of the Stars. ::She regained her normal tone.:: And such, those who cling to ideas that could get them burnt, or are now simply old, are said to be lava buried. It's the 24th century, not the 21st, and someone who would openly threaten the Ambassador's job because he can't mine because he might hurt others is.. ::Ceciri's fangs are very visible, and from the agitated movements of her ears:: .. well, lava buried. In any case.
((Amity Outpost - Science and Research Center, Holodeck Simulation Lab))
The group arrived at the Holodeck and Lieutenant Ariadust began keying in the program parameters.
Iko: Interesting metaphor. ::smile::
Kivik: ::Clearly fascinated:: Thank you for sharing that story - your culture’s legends are quite captivating!
Ceciri smiled a bit, carefully retracting her fangs.
Ariadust: The Klingons certainly thought so. It's why they have a monastery in the Cygnet system. There's a lot of interesting overlap in our mythologies. Anyway. ::Ceciri had been keying in the program, with an optional addon she found useful.:: The holodeck is ready.
Iko: So you were able to read my sloppy handwriting?
Kivik offered Iko a strained smile. In truth, the Security Officer’s penmanship left something to be desired - but ne was confident the group as a whole would be able to figure things out. After all, now that they were in the holodeck they could ask the computer to make any adjustments they wanted to try with no need for written proposals.
Kivik: Well enough, I’d say.
Iko: alright, lets see how this goes. First off, a basic design for the droids, toys, things -
Kivik: Yes, I believe that is what the Lieutenants were working on.
Iko: actually, How about first off, a name for what we are abt to make.
While Kivik didn’t believe the name mattered - at least not yet - it would be useful to have something short they could refer to their work as.
Kivik: ::Looking to the others, then back to Bec:: Let’s not get carried away with enthusiasm. Our priority is finding a solution that can distract the Angels - at least temporarily - from the mining equipment without harming them or causing the Hawlat any distress. A catchy name can wait. For now, let’s just call it… ::ne thought for a moment:: Project KIRA - an amalgam of our initials?
With an official name on hold, the group set to work bringing their prototype to holographic ‘life’ making adjustments and testing components as they went. It wasn’t long before they had something that could be put into operation - though it certainly had plenty of room for functional refinement and looked frantically cobbled together.
Iko: That looks good, might need a lil bit of tweaking... perhaps a bit bigger? I don't want them to be able to hurt the... Angels whatsoever, so I'm kinda treating them as Human infants...
Kivik: Considering the Angels’ enjoy ramming themselves headfirst into our ships, I don’t think we need to treat them as particularly fragile. All the same, we don’t want any of their tendrils getting caught in the works - and we don’t want the drones to get broken by their play either, if it gets rough. We’ll need to consider some sort of armor - more energy-efficient than shielding - akin to what we see on our small craft.
Kivik: Yes, I almost forgot! Building on Lieutenant Ariadust’s suggestion of utilizing the Bussard Collectors, I’ve managed to program them to absorb and concentrate raw particles and plasmas, squeezing them into a sort of ‘primordial juice’ - just the kind of thing that ought to intrigue our space born creatures. In other words, wherever these drones go, they’ll leave behind a trail of ‘treats’ to lure the Angels. The question now is - how do we deploy these drones in such a way that they don’t interfere with the Angels too much. Thoughts?
Kivik: Interesting - why don’t we run a simulation? I’ve got preliminary data regarding the Angels’ behaviour, collected by myself and Ensign Iko, programmed into the holodeck. ::To Ariadust:: Combined with your custom holodeck parameters and ::to Reade:: your assistance programming the device’s behavioural subroutines, I think we should be able to get a fairly accurate idea of how they’ll react to our ‘toys’.
With that, the simulation began and the group watched as their device set to work, humming (or, more accurately, vibrating the nebulous gasses surrounding it) and scooping up nebula particles, leaving behind a trail of concentrated plasma blobs. Before long, one of the virtual Angels took note and floated over to investigate. As it approached, it seemed to vibrate in harmony with the device, as if communing with it. It didn’t take long for the creature to ‘nibble’ one of the blobs, then another, and another…
oO Yes, the plan is working! Oo
Before long, the creature had caught up to the toy - only, rather than playfully bumping it, as it had the Yosemite Sam, the creature reached out with a tendril and grabbed onto it, pulling itself directly up to the plasma emitter and ‘drinking’ it like a smoothie through a straw.
Kivik scowled. That was unexpected. oO Perhaps the plasma is too delicious… Oo
Kivik was about to respond when a hail came in over nir communicator, routed by Ops:
Thompkins: =/\= Poseidon Mining Rig to Amity Outpost, we have an emergency. One of the space bourne creatures has become trapped in our equipment. We require your assistance. =/\=
The science officer looked at the others with a worried look. The situation was getting dire, and their prototype was still in development. All the same, they couldn’t ignore the call for help.
Kivik: =/\= This is Ensign Kivik aboard Amity Outpost. We hear you, Poseidon. What can we do to help? =/\=
Kivik shrugged, unsure of what exactly to do but knowing that ne needed to do something.
Thompkins: =/\= Look, we don't have much time, Ensign. We don't have the facilities here or the vehicles to get that creature out. But I bet if you take some of those fancy runabouts you brought along with you, you've got a shot. =/\=
Kivik: =/\= Understood. We’ll see what we can do and get back to you with a plan of action as soon as we can.. ::Thinking for a moment, Kivik added:: ..In the meantime, I recommend activating some nearby equipment - anything that’ll vibrate without harming the creature. It may serve to calm it down a little. =/\=
The J’naii turned to the rest of the group with clenched teeth, really feeling the singularity of nir Ensign’s pip. This hadn’t exactly been in the Academy training manuals and the responsibility felt lightyears beyond nir experience.