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Barely holding it together


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Barely holding it together

Lieutenant Mellita Herodion stood at her customary station, Tactical, looking like she had just gone twelve rounds with a Klingon warrior. In truth her injuries had been caused in a two minute long scuffle with a male Orion during a boarding attempt of the USS Hornet. The boarding attempt was only the last significant attempt by the Orion Syndicate to reclaim a couple hundred beings that were meant to be sold as slaves but that didn't seem to matter to Melitta anymore as it once had. Melitta didn't care because having gotten precious little sleep in the past seventy-two hours and having the Hornet attacked time and again since the rescue, the problem the Hornet's crew faced had become so much bigger. Bigger then Melitta's scrapes and bruises and definitely more concerning then a group of political refugees as the Hornet, an Akira class vessel, had been damaged to an extent that warp two was the best that the old ship could manage with rapidly diminishing weapons capabilities.

The funny thing was that even while Melitta worked at her console inputting commands with practiced speed and efficiency doing her best to ignore her tiredness, Melitta couldn't think of anywhere else she would prefer to be. She wouldn't have traded her place on the Hornet for that of a Sovereign class vessel or even to be on shore leave on her home world of Til'ahn more commonly known as Duronis two. Melitta looked up to see Captain Elise Kardon come out of her ready room with a grim look on her face and not for the first time since the ordeal had started. There was no need for Kardon to ask the status of the different departments because everyone around knew the answers would have been the same as the last time they had been asked. What had changed though was updates from Star Fleet Command that Captain Kardon was undoubtedly carrying.

"Getting straight to it," Kardon said. "The nearest Star Fleet vessel won't reach us for another twenty-four hours. Our orders are to continue on course until then. Oh and nice work in regards to adapting that fighter's communications array Morris."

"You did mention that this isn't about slaves anymore Captain," Commander Sam Felke complained. "Hell the Syndicate is hounding us to make a point. We should.."

The first officer didn't get to finish his sentence as the Captain cut him off mentioning her utter disbelief that any of her officers would suggest disobeying orders from the Admiralty let alone hers. Melitta also found the idea unthinkable both morally and ethically not to mention that abandoning a mission was a sure fire way to kill one's career. Having said that she also knew that not everyone on the Hornet chose to be on an outdated ships that got into trouble a lot. Melitta only half listened as Felke and Kardon exchanged another round of tense remarks. The more Melitta thought about the more she realized that the First Officer had been acting increasingly unusual in the past day or so. At first Melitta thought nothing of it, it was just the pressure and fatigue getting to everyone but looking up from her console once more to see the human male pull his phaser from his belt and aiming it at the Captain made Melitta quickly rethink her analysis.

Melitta hadn't been involved in a mutiny before that moment but it seemed very similar to when the boarding party beamed onto the Hornet. As Captain Kardon had been standing in front of the view screen she successfully dived for the cover of one of the bridge turbolifts but that wasn't Melitta's first priority. Backing up toward the engineering alcove directly behind her she came face to face with a nervous ensign pointing his phaser at her. Before it could be fired at Melitta she grabbed the ensigns head and slammed it into the console before quickly ducking into the alcove for cover. Perhaps the difference between defending against boarding parties and mutinies was that in split seconds friends and colleagues could become the enemy. Having served with some of the people around her for years Melitta hesitated in returning fire. Feeling rapid vibrations from multiple directions signaled to Melitta that phasers were being fired or about to be so she ducked just in time to avoid one such phaser blast. Typically Melitta didn't patently make use of her fielding abilities but it had saved her life as well as remind her that allegiances had been decided when she knocked out the engineering ensign.

Out of the seven officers on the bridge Melitta was the only one to support Captain Kardon. She didn't know want had been said to convince the rest of the senior bridge crew to turn on Kardon and it didn't truly matter. Being the last person standing was what counted, motives could be discovered later. Staying as low as possible Melitta fired her phaser repetitively hitting the operations and science officers with marine-like accuracy. At the same time Kardon had stunned Morris who was at the helm. That left only Kardon, Felke and Melitta conscious. Ducking to avoid another series of phaser blasts aimed at her, Melitta only rose cautiously when she heard a thump sound. In the door way of the crew break room lay Commander Felke's body, Captain Kardon standing a couple meters away.

Walking back to her console slowly Melitta let out a groan as she saw several warning indicator. One of which said that another Orion vessel was only five minutes away.

"Are you ok lieutenant?" Kardon asked simply but with a grateful look on her face.

Melitta moved a few stray locks of hair behind her ear before replying.

"No injuries Captain but we do have another Syndicate vessel incoming. ETA four minutes, arming weapons and raising shields." Melitta stated before quickly speaking again in a slightly more lively manner. "Should I call for replacement crew Captain?"

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

Lt. Commander Arden Cain

First Officer

USS Mercury

NCC-99812

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