Author Topic: When the Going Gets Tough... [A Starfleet Corps of Engineers story]  (Read 427 times)

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When the Going Gets Tough... [A Starfleet Corps of Engineers story]
So I started this fic over 10 years ago on the forums, and those are fairly well dead. This place is a lot more lively, so I thought I'd show you all some writing I've been doing off and on for years.

Chapter 1

Lieutenant Commander Jack Baker walked through the corridors of the Federation Surplus Depot Z15 to meet with Captain Scott, still wondering why he had been summoned here for a new assignment. However, he didn't have much time to wonder before he arrived at the shuttle bay and the transport craft he had been ordered to report to. He tapped the control to open the hatch on the antique 23rd century shuttle and climbed in only to be confronted by...
"Captain Scott?!" Jack asked startledly once he managed to pick his jaw up off the floor.

"Aye. In the flesh. Ye seem surprised, lad," the old engineer responded.

"They didn't tell me I was going to be working for you, sir," Commander Baker answered.

"Well...tis nae so much workin' for me as ah'm tae brief ye on yer new assignment, laddie," Captain Montgomery Scott replied. "Come on. Seal the hatch, lad. We've a great deal tae do and precious little time tae do ut in," Scotty finished as he turned to the console to finish his preflight checks.

"Aye, Sir," Baker acknowledged as he turned to close the hatch on a shuttle that was probably as old as her pilot.

"Before ye ask, laddie, let me explain what's going on. As ye may know, Ah'm involved in reconstitutin' the ol' Starfleet Corps of Engineers."

Jack merely nodded, not wanting to interrupt.

"Well, your name and personnel jacket were put on my desk...dinnae interrupt lad. Let me finish. Along with a note from your former commanding officer. Captain Erika Benteen has issued a formal recommendation that ye be promoted and given an independent command, Commander Baker," the old engineer finished with a grin.

"Sir?" the newly minted Commander Jack Baker asked incredulously as Scotty affixed a new pip to Jack's uniform collar.

"Call me Scotty, lad. Ye've earned it."

"Yes Sir! er, Scotty. Damn. This is going to take some getting used to..." Jack trailed off. "So what's my assignment?"

"We're comming tae that now, lad," Scotty said and pointed as he opened the panel on one of the old windows.

"A salvage operation?"

"Nae exactly..."

"Scotty..." Jack said with a warning, questioning tone.

"Aye, lad. She's all yours. The U.S.S. Howard Hughes. Miranda class."

Jack pulled up the ship's information on a console on the shuttle and his eyes widened. He turned to Captain Scott, "Ca...Scotty, I realize you're trying to get the S.C.E. out there as quickly as possible, but you're not doing us any favors like this."

"Laddie, if you cannae work with that ship, then maybe ye're nae the man ah want around here," Scotty rumbled, his brogue thickening.

"I can work with this ship, but she's a wreck!" Jack pointed to the information on the console screen, "I'll have to get her engines up just to get her to the spacedock I saw on my way in on my transport! To get this ship operational, by the book, I'll need two months just to get started! But of course we don't have two months, so I'll have to do it in two weeks."

"That's the spirit, laddie! Dinnae let this old man gie ye any guff. Ye be an engineer and she's your ship. But remember, you're her skipper noo, th' man in the center seat. Dinnae be tryin' tae do everything y'self. That's what ye'll be hae'in a crew for."

"Aye, sir..." Jack trailed off looking at his new command through the viewports on the shuttle as they moved into dock, shaking his head in disbelief. The Howard Hughes looked like she'd been through an asteroid field at medium speed with no deflectors.
'What am I supposed to do with this old hulk?' he mused to himself as Scotty docked the shuttle...
« Last Edit: February 04, 2017, 03:18:31 am by LaineyBugsDaddy »
There are only 10 kinds of people in the world;
those who understand binary and those who don't.

Re: When the Going Gets Tough... [A Starfleet Corps of Engineers story]
Chapter 2

'Me and my big mouth. Two weeks instead of two months, indeed...' Jack thought to himself, 'It's been a week and we're just pulling into the repair dock now.'

"Thrusters to station keeping. Prepare for umbilical connections and power switchover," he ordered aloud.

"Aye, sir. Thrusters at station keeping, zero relative We are in position," the helmsman reported.

"Ready for umbilical connections," the operations officer reported immediately thereafter, "Umbilicals now moving into position, and...locked," he finished unnecessarily as the booms of the umbilical arms making contact rang through the hull of the Howard Hughes.

"Switching over to external power, Sir," the Chief Engineer reported, "Impulse engines powering down."

'A week and I still can't remember my command crew's names yet. There hasn't been time. This ship is a wreck. It looked bad in the report, but that didn't even begin to list the minor issues that had us take 5 days longer than it should have to get moving... Jack interrupted his train of thought, "Very well. Helm, power down thrusters."

"Aye aye. Thrusters to idle...and...thruster systems deactivated. We are docked," the helmsman reported.

"All systems on external power, Sir," Baker's Chief Engineer stated. "All reactors to standby mode and beginning to go to full power down," he finished, sounding relieved.

"Sounds like some of the power systems were more shaky than you'd like to deal with," Baker commented.

"Sir, I'd have preferred to be towed in with the way things are on this ship, but there aren't any tugs to spare at this place, so we had to use the ship itself. I'm perfectly happy to shut down our own power systems so as to be able to give them a complete overhaul," the engineer grumbled.

"Look...uh...what was your name again?" Jack asked, looking embarrassed.

"MacLeod, Sir. Connor MacLeod. Don't feel bad, Sir. Ah can't remember the names of my own staff, either. There's been no time."

"Connor...MacLeod...," Baker blinked hard, twice, and bit his tongue, but it didn't help, "Maybe sometime you'll show me your sword..."


Jack shook his as if to clear it, "Nevermind. You can check the computer later. Fiction, motion pictures, Highlander. That should explain my reaction well enough."

"Aye, Sir," MacLeod said, outwardly looking puzzled, but inwardly grinning. He knew exactly what his new skipper was talking about, and immediately decided he'd get along just fine with a skipper that had such a sense of humor.

"Anyway, as I was about to say. The tugs here are all busy, and we couldn't get one detached from anywhere else. I don't like it, either. The way the systems are on this ship, a tow would have helped a lot. But we would have been waiting another week just to get started if we'd waited for one," Baker grumbled.

"Well, as it is, we've repaired a lot of damage just to get her mobile again. That should help some," LtCdr. MacLeod commented.

"I hope so. The Howard Hughes here is a wreck right now, except for her impulse engines. And the warp engines are so outdated that they've given us a pair of new nacelles and a brand new warp core to put in. Those are due within the hour, now," Jack shook his head, "So much to do. At least the station crew is going to help out."

"Aye. But I've given orders that when the new warp core and nacelles get here, all other work halts and everybody in my department gets that done as quickly as possible. We're going to need to test the EPS system once we've got the new core and I want it in as soon as possible so we know if we need to replace what few old power conduits hadn't been stripped out of the old girl," Connor stated definitively.

"Very good then. Carry on. I've got to got see the station manager about work schedules for his teams that will be providing assistance," Jack made a face. He'd rather be subject to a Cardassian interrogation than do these menial bureaucratic tasks.

"Aye Aye, Skipper," MacLeod acknowledged.

Jack stalked off to the shuttle bay. If he had to do this 24th century equivalent of paper shuffling, he was going to at least have one enjoyable thing involved in the process...
There are only 10 kinds of people in the world;
those who understand binary and those who don't.