((Holodeck Simulation, Beside the Bunker))
Wong: But why attack a bunch of junior officers on the holodec---- It’s after Captain Rahman again. The whole thing is a trap and we’re being used as bait.
Kivik: That could be. Whatever it is, it seems to have hostile intent and an ability to infiltrate ships’ systems. If it were to get ahold of the Captain’s security codes it could deactivate life support or detonate the warp core...
Wong: We can’t let her near this thing. If we crash the holodeck, we can lure this thing out of hiding. Then it literally has to deal with us.
Wong immediately set to work coding the immune response program. Kivik noted the invitation to collaborate and looked on as Wong worked - clearly he had some experience working in the holodeck coding environment. Kivik did not - but as ne pondered, an idea came to nem.
Kivik: While you work on adjusting the holodeck’s parameters to consider itself an entity, I am going to provide some identifying materials for it to consider friendly. That way we can be sure that the holodeck will recognise us and won’t attack us. Since our attacker is being generated by the Holodeck, I’ll set it to consider any entities with mass and a heat signature to be safe. Of course - assuming the being itself doesn’t just come for us.
Wong: If given the choice, I’d rather that this thing go after me anyways once we flush it out. I’m a Klingon. I’m literally built for handling tough stuff and it goes right down to brain structure.
Kivik thought ne saw a glimmer of uncertainty on Lieutenant Wong’s face, but he seemed like he meant what he was saying.
Kivik: Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that, alright? I don’t know that I’d be able to drag you and Thorne out of here.
Wong: I can handle it. Right now, we just need to code this and make it run.
Kivik nodded and set to work adjust the parameters of the code Wong was producing to prevent the Holodeck from mistakenly attacking them. The two worked quickly, bouncing snippets of code back and forth. There wasn’t even time to test - but Kivik felt confident in the idea. Now it was just a matter of seeing if they had successfully translated that idea into code.
Wong: =/\= To anyone who’s out there, please keep Captain Rahman AWAY from the holodeck. It’s a trap. =/\=
Wong turned back to Kivik.
Wong: Would you like the honours?
Kivik: Let’s hope this works.
With that, the program was activated. By all appearances, it looked as if a bunch of Thornes, Reades, Wongs and Kiviks had invaded the holodeck. All of which going after the intruder - hopefully.
Kivik watched as a clone of nemself, armed and dangerous, appeared nearby alongside a ferocious-looking Ensign Reade. It was uncanny. In producing additional ‘friendly’ antibody holograms, the holodeck and produced them to look just like the officers within.
oO But more fierce! Oo ne thought, watching them hunt for the intruder with ruthless efficiency.
Kivik: At least that should keep it busy for a while.
Kelrod: =/\= Understood, what's the situation there =/\=
Commander Kelrod’s sudden voice startled Kivik, who had been focused on the ongoing battle, nervously grinding nir teeth as the ‘clones’ made their way around the complex.
Wong/Thorne: =/\= Response =/\=
Reade: =/\= Commander Kelrod, Thorne is gravely injured at the moment, I am with her trying to keep her alive.
Kelrod: =/\= Hold on. I'm going in! =/\=
oO If Commander Kelrod has found a way in - does that mean there is a way out? Oo
Kivik’s thinking was interrupted by the sound of phaser fire. The antibodies must have located the entity and engaged it. Kivik looked to the code once again and saw, indeed, that their antibody doubles were focusing in on an area, but they seemed to be being taken out one by one. As this happened, new copies appeared, rushing through the bunker complex in the direction of fire. From somewhere there came a loud and angry bellow of rage from the intruder.
Reade: =/\= ::nervous voice:: Ikaia I need your help. Lilith is passing in and out of consciousness and she is hallucinating. I fear she is losing blood from her wound to the back. CAN I DO ANYTHING to help her? I am not losing her. I applied a pain-reducing spray on her back, but it’s not helping =/\=
Wong: =/\= Response =/\=
Reade: =/\= Sounds good, I’ll keep talking to her, till you can make it over here. =/\=
Kivik looked to the Lieutenant and simply nodded. The program was running and Kelrod was working on finding a way into the Holodeck - Ikaia needed to help Thorne.
Wong: =/\= Response =/\=
As Wong left to help Thorne and Reade, Kivik was left alone by the bunker with nothing but comms chatter to keep nem apprised of the fates of nir friends - but ne needed to keep an eye on the program. If their plan to crash the system was going to work, someone needed to keep increasing the number of antibodies.
Wong: =/\= Response =/\=
Reade: =/\= Copy, doing that now, waiting for you to come =/\=
That’s when ne saw it - the intruder. It was being chased, under fire, by a swarm of Thornes, Kiviks, Ikaia’s, and Scottys yet it was still holding its own. Kivik watched as it seemed to phase in and out of existence as phaser fire blasted through the area where it had stood a moment before. It’s eyes flared red.
Kivik glanced at the Holodeck’s code. It was beginning to show signs of stress - rerouting power and shutting down areas of the ‘map’ to make room for more antibodies - but it still hadn’t reached the breaking point. When ne looked up once again, the creature had turned to face the real Kivik - crouched beside the bunker with a PADD.
oO Oh no - I should have acted like one of the others Oo ne thought, too late.
IntruderI: ::Pointing a phaser at Kivik:: You - you will release me from this place!
Kivik: ::Standing:: No… I won’t. There’s no way to open the door - and even if there were, I would not help you.
Suddenly, the door to the bunker beside Kivik cracked open and Commander Kelrod began to materialise through a containment field. Kivik wasted no time: The intruder was momentarily distracted by Kelrod’s sudden appearance - Kivik raised nir phaser and fired at it. A hit! The creature was knocked stumbling back. A copy of Thorne jumped over a crate and fired again - the intruder bellowed in anger as it tried to phase again - only, this time, it didn’t work. Whatever they had done had locked the being’s appearance.
Intruder: What?! No!
Commander Kelrod had made it through and, as he did, copies of Kelrod began materializing - dressed in the same armor as the other antibodies. They too zeroed in on the creature and began attacking it, taking it on in hand-to-hand combat while the others tried to get off shots at it. Despite its inability to phase, it was still very nimble.
Kivik: It’s nice to see you, Commander. ::Glancing at the PADD:: I think we’ve got it distracted for now, but despite our attempts, the Holodeck has begun syphoning power from other systems to keep the program running.
Kivik: Ensign Thorne is badly hurt. Lieutenant Wong has gone to try and treat her - Ensign Reade is on point, keeping any would-be attackers away… I think it’s just the one intruder.
Kivik: We can keep it busy, but we can’t kill it. The holodeck is struggling, but it’ll take something else to push it over the edge.
Suddenly the holodeck was pitched into darkness. The sounds of phaser fire disappeared in an instant. The bunker door beside Kivik began to open again, slowly. Light spilled in, revealing the familiar gridded lines of the powered-down holodeck. Kivik looked over and saw Ensign Reade and Lieutenant Wong standing over Ensign Thorne.
Commander Ukinix poked his head through the open door.
Ukinix: ::Cheerily:: Morning! Everyone alright?
Kivik: Commander - I’m fine, but there’s some sort of malicious entity that has embedded itself in this program. We’ll need to purge it before it can move into some other system.
Kivik: I suppose this is just another reason that the impending refit is probably a good idea.
Quickly, the team was able to move Thorne out of the Holodeck and transport her to Sickbay. Kivik ran there as quick as ne could to make sure Lilith would recover, watching anxiously as her wounds were treated. She would recover - but had everyone not acted so quickly, she may not have made it.
What remained of the entity’s energy signature was purged from Reade’s holodeck simulation and the computer was set to remove any additional copies of code resembling it from its systems. The stowaway had been defeated.
Ensign Kivik (ne/nem/nir)