"Renegade Deception" #51&52 "I've got an idea. Duck."


[USS Pegasus, Bridge, just after the aliens have been beamed to sickbay]

=/\= Lt-Cmdr LaBrie to the Bridge, Could you send Evans down to the main cargobay to take a look at the pods?=/\=

=/\=Petrova here, he's on his way. Might I sugest you involve Lt. JG Black in this too?=/\=

=/\=Very well, I'll ask her too. LaBrie out=/\=

"Well, Evans, are you going any time soon, or are you going to make me a liar?" Petrova asked with just the right amount of venom

"Yes ma'am, I'm on my way..." Evans responded tiredly. However, he got up swiftly, and took the elevator down...

[Scene switches to Engineering...]

=/\=This is LaBrie to Lt JG Black, could you spare a moment, to take a look at some escapepods in the main cargobay?=/\=

=/\= Aye sir, I'll be right down. =/\= She nodded to one of her other engineers, and he knew he was to take over. Kitty stretched a little as she walked through the ship corridors. "Hm... escape pods.. how hard can this be?" She wandered into the cargo bay and took a critical first look at the pods. "Well, it looks like the engineers I sent were able to figure out how to open... Oh. It's been cut apart." She said this aloud without thinking, of course.

"Yup, pretty much so, I'm afraid... The occupants were not giving us much of a choice, with them on the brink of dying, and all... Please try and look if you can find out where these pods come from, and why they were launched on the first place, ok? Ensign Evans will arrive shortly to assist you. Kennock and I will return to our stations on the bridge.", Caelen said.

Lt. Black nodded. "We'll take care of it, sir." She turned her attention to the pods, looking at the symbols, her head tilted to the side. Soon enough she was kneeling down at one of the pods, then crawling as close to underneath as she could, full of curiousity.

It was the excact moment that Kennock and LaBrie wanted to exit the cargobay, that Ensign Evans wanted to enter, and a "YELP!" was heard as Evans was rudely awakened from his pondering...

"Is he always so on edge?" Kennock asked

"'Fraid so..." LaBrie answered, letting a small chuckle escape, "Easy does it, Evans, just go help Ms. Black here, trying to make some sense of these escape pods..."

"Yes, s... sir," a startled evans stuttered back, as Kennock and LaBrie continued their way....

Kitty heard him enter and heard the others exit.. she peeked up over the edge of the pod and tried to sound casual. "Oh, Mr... Evans, right?" As if she'd forgotten his name. She hadn't. "Is your arm alright?" So far, so good, Kitty...

"Yeah, it's a lot better... I guess these doctors are good for something after all..." Ronald said. "I'm just glad to be all alone for a while, just doing my job, without someone watching my every move..."

She blushed slightly at that, but looked perplexed. Wasn't she 'someone'? Or was she not watching his every move? She really didn't know how to respond. "So... uh..." Being an engineering geekette, she grabbed out for a 'safe' topic. "How 'bout these pods? I've never seen anything quite like them."

<Oops, I did it again!> were Ronald's thoughts, as he saw Kathy's expressions... "Eh... I, eh, I mean, no, of course I'm not alone, it's just that you don't... eh... I guess I just feel... Yeah... Pods... Odd things those!" <Yeah, real smooth, Evans!>

Kitty couldn't help laughing at that. Not just a muffled snicker, either... she chuckled. "It's okay, I say things like that to people, too. And boy, do I feel silly afterwards." She started examining the nearest pod more closely as she spoke.

"Ok, let's start with that one..." Evans mumbled under his breath "Have you managed to find out something already, or did you just arrive also?"

She straightened up and stepped back. "I just got here. It's all nonsense to me. I'm not a languages expert, but I haven't seen anything like it before." She gestured at the foreign syllables. "Assuming it even is a language."

"You'd think that there would be symbols on it, something like 'pull here to release cover' in a big yellow triangle... Ah, what's this?" Evans said, pointing to a brightly colored sticker or plaque, next to a latch. "Better not pull it, there might be an explosive release bolt behind it..."

"Yeah, with my luck." She examined the latch. "I've got an idea. Duck." And with that, she pulled the latch, dropping down underneath the pod as she did so. When in doubt, do and pray! There was a Pop and then a Bang and the remains of the hatch, already cut open by the previous engineering personnel, came flying across the cargo bay at an alarming rate of speed and slammed into the far wall, clattering to the floor.

"GAH! WHOA! Some more warning in advance next time, please!" Evans shouted. He traced the path of the blown cover, and saw that the cover hit the wall just between a switchbox and an alarmbutton, actually damaging nothing. "Nice shot!" he exclaimed,

He got up from behind cover, and turned his attention back to the pod, to see, if he could make some sense of the latch, and saw that it actually was pretty standard... "Why weren't they able to open it up normally?" he asked...

"Well, I didn't see it until you pointed it out," she answered, straightening up from behind the pod. "That was fun, wasn't it? Let's not do that again." She peered inside the pod. "Look, there are some controls here, too. Yeah, plus you don't spend too much time looking for a latch when people inside are injured. You just break it open as quickly as you can, right?"

"Well, I didn't see it until you pointed it out," she answered, straightening up from behind the pod. "That was fun, wasn't it? Let's not do that again." She peered inside the pod. "Look, there are some controls here, too. Yeah, plus you don't spend too much time looking for a latch when people inside are injured. You just break it open as quickly as you can, right?"

"Aw, why do you get to do all the fun stuff?" Evans jokingly whined. "Well, you might be right there, but it would be the first thing I would look for, that's all... Perhaps this species can distinguish this colour very well... Yeah, that's probably it..." Evans wasn't relly convinced by himself, but he had to admit, that he would have chosen another color...

He kneeled down right next to Kath, to take a look at those controls Kath hat pointed out. "Anything familiar? Schematic representations, something like that?" he asked, turning his head to Kath... And was startled at how close he actually was to her...


Kitty turned to face him and then blinked, apparently noticing for herself how close he was... then she just smiled and turned back to looking at the controls. "I think they're environmental controls. From the look of the pod, I'd say that the aliens have similar physiology to our own. Two arms, two legs... Hmm... Four fingers, I think." She looked very pleased with herself and completely unconscious of the fact that her hard-won facts could be observed by anybody who went into Sickbay and looked at the aliens there.

"Only four fingers? Do you think they'll look a bit like cartoon characters?" Evans let out "Sorry, just kidding... Huh? That's funny... Looks like they use an electrical system... I wouldn't be surprised it actually runs on a lead battery... Does make sense, though, far less complicated than a plasma system, however, bulkier and less efficient..."

He looked back at Kath "I like old cars... That's how I know..."

She looked impressed. "I've never seen the workings of an old car in my whole life. How did you learn all of that? Hmm... I'm just guessing, here, but I think these guys breath an M-class atmosphere."

"Really? You haven't? Well, my father and I managed to get hold of an ancient "Swatch Smart"... Odd little thing, I couldn't imagine anyone wanting a car like that... Yes, I think they would just breathe Nitrogen/Oxygen too... Anything else, you would have smelled, I guess... I haven't picked up anything else in serious quantities with my tricorder... I don't see anything in the form of thrusters, or anything like that... I guess they are just survival capsules, relying on being picked up, and nothing else... They are heavily armored, so they just get into them, let the ship explode around them, and hope for the best... Well, it IS a strategy..."

Evans was sounding less and less sure of himself...

Lt. Black noticed his hesitation and smiled cheerily. "Well, I think it's a decent enough strategy. Of course, that would also mean that the remains of their ship couldn't be far from here, wouldn't it? That's something one of us should probably tell the Captain. I'm not sure how much more I can figure out from these things before I start taking them apart." She hefted the bag of tools she'd brought with her, and pulled out a tool, lifting it into the air as if it were a wineglass.

"Yeah, I guess you're right... Let's infrom the captain of what we can find out, and let's open up a can of canopeners on these tin cans..."

"Or, we could just blast the hatches clear across the room, set up a target on the far wall, see if we can hit it." She chuckled at the idea. "Alright, let's get to it."

"Ok, I'll start printing some pictures of the people I hate most, to use as targets..." Evans joked

Even though Evans was feeling like breaking down, just a few ours ago, working on these pods had somehow lifted his spirit... Some people would argue that Lt. Black had something to do with it. They kept tinkering with them for a few hours more, before calling it a night...


Posting clear across the cargo bay,

Lieutenant Junior Grade Kathleen Black Chief Engineering Officer


Ensign Ronald Evans Chief Operations Officer

USS Pegasus