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For Heavy Tactical & Security Objectives Part 1

Posted on Mon Aug 9th, 2021 @ 3:18pm by 2nd Lieutenant Christian Rogers & Petty Officer 2nd Class Corvus Hannah [Rogers] & Captain Cronin Keys [GM]

Mission: Pre-Launch + Pre-Mission 1 Stories
Location: Utopia Planetia Starbase, Mars
Timeline: Pre-Launch


The four men set their trays down on the Mess table near a window overlooking the landscaped quad. Rogers wiped his hands on the dark grey shorts he was wearing before realizing that did little good. Red dust streaked his shorts, his legs, arms and the jersey he wore. At least three patches of 'road rash' were visible, the blood and dirt mixed together to form a dark red scaled patch at each location. After he showered he would hit up Hannah to have him run a dermal regenerator over them but for now, they were 'war wounds' and well earned markers of their victory.

The others of his team chose a nearby table after moving two together to create enough room for the other seven.

"To victory!" Rogers said, lifting the pitcher of iced tea, the clinking of ice lost in the sudden roar from the rest of the team. Like him they all wore smudges and streaks of the red dirt on their various shirts, jerseys, shorts or pants. Even though they weren't on duty, Rogers never cared much for the taste of alcohol so the toasting of their baseball victory with ice tea had to suffice. At least it had the same dark amber color of some beer and much whiskey. Having made the first ceremonial toast, Rogers sat to his after game lunch and worked to keep the exuberance and joy of them winning the baseball game over the facility's Ops department try to remain in his ears only. It helped that he kept the group at his own table small so he could concentrate on just the three others.

"What a game!" Hannah said, his youthful exuberance shining through even the dirt on his face, most of which were obtained as he slid home and was 'tagged' in the face with the catcher's glove. That it prevented him from scoring a run was overshadowed by Hannah's newfound love for the game. And to think he'd only vaguely heard of 'baseball' before joining Roger's squads as a medic.

"Told you you'd love it," Newton said. Despite his own outward appearance Rogers knew it hid a depth of pain that continued to threaten to overwhelm him. But, just as he was about to add his own thoughts to Hannah's woefully lacking upbringing - imagine an entire colony world that had never even heard of baseball! - when his attention was drawn to a man entering through the doors. He wasn't sure why the newcomer should attract his attention but he did. Fortunately the other three didn't give any indication if they noticed the newcomer or not.

Now he had to find a leader for the M.A.C.O Team assigned to the Pioneer, each of the task force starships had at least 1. Maybe 2 if there was room for them. Cronin Keys walked in, where the computer informed him his next candidate was located. The male Betazoid Captain had been passively receiving telepathically all the randomness those around him thought, most he just 'heard' and then let go of it all. It would hurt to actively process all of the mental totem floating about.

He glanced around and saw 2nd Lieutenant Christian Rogers with his team, though only he noticed Cronin. Odd. Though not enough to warrant further investigation as he walked over and offered his hand. "Greetings Lieutenant, can I speak with you in private?" He asked.

Rogers stood as the Starfleet captain approached their table. Technically it wasn't necessary as they were in the Mess and at recreation but he found keeping to these types of courtesies usually have him some consideration when the Fleeters inevitably found him "anti-social" or "condescending rude".  As he stood, so did the other Marines with him.

He reluctantly took the offered hand.   "As you wish, Captain," Rogers said then turned to lead the way to a secluded table on the other side of the room.   Again,  as military courtesy demanded,  he waited for the captain to take a seat before he sat himself.

Cronin sat at the table that was away from everyone in the Mess that Rogers led him to, he leaned back in the chair as he watched the other man. "Apologies for pulling you away during your off duty time Lieutenant, though time is not something I have a great deal of. No I'm not dying or anything," he chuckled.

Rogers tried to keep the scowl from showing as he failed to understand the joke. Though he quickly realized that, as a Betazoid, the captain would know either way. "It's fine, Captain," he said, concentrating on the part that had any relevance. "As I'm sure you're aware none of us is really ever off duty. Is there something you need from me?"

He had to agree with Rogers on that, "true and applies to everyone in the armed forces," he smiled with a nod. Forgetting the attempt at humour and so decided to move on. “What I am to reveal to you is classified Lieutenant, you are not to discuss with anyone else but your team in private. Am I clear?”

Rogers instinctively sat up straighter at the caution of a classified mission.  It was the same now as it usually was when the missions were classified: wahoo! Classified mission!. It was only later,  in the thick of the mission when it became oh God! Oh god, we're all going to die!

"Understood, sir," he said,  his eyes only flicking to his team across the room.  Though they were still joking and bantering among themselves,  Rogers knew each one of them,  with the exception of Hannah, was well aware of Rogers and the Fleeter captain.

"Excellent," Cronin replied noting the other man's, excited?, posture and smiled again. "My ship, the Pioneer and a task force of 9 other starships are headed back into the Delta quadrant very soon. A large civilian convoy is being sent as well to set up a colony and commerce with as many species as they can while we explore around Voyager's path home." He explained but only loud enough for Rogers to hear.

Sitting forward, Rogers couldn't help but show his surprise at the news. While he wasn't intimately familiar with the records of the Voyager, like any who served in the services, he was somewhat familiar with the general overview of what happened to the Voyager and its subsequent travels across the Delta quadrant. "I can see why you're looking for combat experience," he said after a few moments. "There are quite a few that wouldn't be happy to see the Federation back in that sector of space. The Kazon. Remaining Borg." It would be a challenge and, of course, encapsulates both the WAHOO!!! and Oh God we're all gonna die! in one fell swoop. "What are the details?"

Cronin pulled a padd from his pocket and placed it in front of him but the display facing Rogers. "Due to the likely hostility we will be facing, Starfleet Command had each Captain recruit a M.A.C.O Team or 2 for heavy tactical and security objectives that might occur while in the Delta." He paused for it all to sink in. "I'd like to offer this assignment to you and your team, if you would like any additional members or equipment you but have to ask and I will make it happen."

He stood and moved the padd to Rogers. "This is a very long term assignment and while we will still be in contact with the Federation, we will mostly be on our own so I will give you and your team a day or 2 to discuss this offer. Family members may apply if they wish to join us should they want to partake in the colonial side of things or if they are in Starfleet to have a job on any of the starships going but as I said earlier time is running out before we launch." He paused again. "Make sure this is what you want before you accept, if you'd like your team involved in the discussion we can get together in the nearby situation room." Cronin said. "I'll be in there." With that said he smiled again then exited the Mess.

Rogers let out a breath after the Starfleet captain left - realizing that he didn't recall if the man ever gave his name. It was certainly a bomb dropped and, if he were to be honest with himself, it was an assignment he wanted to pursue. He looked up and across the room. Now that the Fleeter captain left his team were quiet, all eyes on him. He stood slowly, taking the PaDD with him as he crossed back across the room. "Listen up," he said, glancing around at the red dirt smeared members of his team. "We have something to definitely talk about."


Sgt. Thomas Newton, UFPMC Squad Lead


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