On the Horizon
Location: Main Bridge
Elizabeth walked out of her ready room and onto the bridge, the command center more barren than usual. “Report?” she asked aimlessly.
Ensign Branson reported from the helm station, “We’re in position at the outer edge of the solar system. All away teams are gone, all shuttles and runabouts are out and about. Engineering reports that they’re ready to begin engine shutdown for diagnostics and repair. Science reports they’re ready to begin extensive sensor sweeps of the system, and want to use the tractor emitters to bring in a few debris pieces of the outer part of this system for analysis.”
The captain sighed with relief, “Let everyone know they have a green light. And I don’t want any fighting between the science departments. Luckily most of them are on away teams, so hopefully, that’ll keep their usual bickering down.”
There were two main away teams: one went to the habitable M-class planet in the inner solar system for investigation, and one went to one of the large gas giants with possibly habitable moons for investigation. Nearly a third of the Yorktown’s crew were off ship either by being transported down or left on shuttles. This was a true test of the ability of the ship as a deep space vessel of exploration.
The captain turned to face the view screen, “Ensign, I’m going to leave you in charge up here. Shouldn’t be too much to do. I’m going to go to engineering to make sure Marian hasn’t pulled his hair out yet. Or thrown anything heavy at the warp core.”
“Yes ma’am,” Branson replied as she stood and made her way to the command chair. Elizabeth turned towards the turbolift before being called by the ensign, “And ma’am? I’d be ready to duck,” she added with a sly smile.
Stepping onto the turbolift Elizabeth ordered it firmly: “Main Engineering.” As she moved through the ship to her destination she couldn’t help but wonder how the away teams were doing, worry about their well being, and amaze at the thought of what they might discover.