[USS Vanguard] RP: High Tide

  • From: Andy <andywoho@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: ncv80221@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Fri, 26 Dec 2014 08:41:05 -0600

Ensign Cory Pendleton brought the Runabout Revelstoke out of warp. He
deployed thrusters and checked his panels. Pendleton was 20 kilometers from
his target. Not bad. He smiled and looked at his passenger. The passenger
wore a black coat and khaki utility pants. His brown boots rested on the
panel in front of him as he reclined in the co-pilot’s seat. He snored
softly and didn’t even seem to notice that the shuttle had dropped out of
Normally, Pendleton would have told his passenger to take his damn feet off
the controls, but this wasn’t normal. Pendleton ferried passengers between
Starbase Conway and Fleet Salvage Yard K-11, code-named “Kayak One One.”
 He rarely had VIP passengers.

Pendleton cleared his throat loudly. He looked at the passenger, whose eyes
were hidden behind wraparound glasses. No reaction. Pendleton frowned.

“Sir,” he said, “we’re here.”

Dominic Cesar Santos stirred. He said, “I know. I felt us drop out of warp.
Your port nacelle is a little out of alignment. Maybe one percent.”

Pendleton did a slow burn. “No, sir, Conway may not be Brigadoon, but we
keep up our standards, sir.”

Dominic Cesar Santos sat up in his chair and looked around. “No, you’re
definitely one percent out of alignment. Look, we’re drifting slightly
starboard. You’ve got drag, Ensign.”

Pendleton checked his readings. He was going to be gratified when he could
prove this arrogant son of a bitch wrong. Pendleton called up the
engineering readout and saw that the port nacelle was mis-aligned .98%.

“Looks like you’re right, sir,” Pendleton said.

Santos cleared his throat and reached under his seat. He produced a bottle
of water, unsnapped the top and took a long drink. He settled his
sunglasses back on his nose.

“So how long were you in Rura Penthe?” he asked Pendleton.

Pendleton said, “Eight months.” He paused. “How did you know?”

Santos looked over at him. “The tattoo on your wrist--Rura Penthe
Brotherhood of Aliens.”

Both men were silent.

Pendleton broke the silence: “Thank you for not asking why I was in Rura

Santos nodded.

Pendleton looked out the forward viewscreen. “There she is,” he said.

Santos looked up at a sight he hadn’t seen in five years. Pendleton gave
him the full treatment. He flew the Revelstoke underneath her and then
around her port side. Santos stared without saying a word.

Pendleton approached from the front and Santos tried not to show his
eagerness as he sat forward, and the registry number and her name came into
view: “NCV-80221 USS Vanguard.”

Pendleton glanced at Santos then pushed a button on his panel. Santos
watched as the Vanguard’s shuttlebay door rose, as if inviting them to come

The ensign set the shuttle gently in Vanguard’s Shuttlebay One.

The engines hummed gently as he powered down the craft. Pendleton began the
post-flight sequence. He said, “I made sure before we left Conway that life
support was on. Power cells are nearly drained, so you’ll want to take a
wrist-torch with you. And--I’m sorry about this--you may need to watch
where you step.”

Santos sat, gathering his thoughts. He said, “Thank you, Mister Pendleton,”
and with all the dignity he could muster, without showing his eagerness, he
exited the rear of the shuttle.

The corridors were cold, quiet, abandoned, masked in shadow. Santos
illuminated the path in front of him with his wrist-torch. He whisked it
around, the light shining back and forth, like a lighthouse at the end of
the world.

As he entered the turbolift, he said, “Bridge.”

The lift rose from Deck Four (Shuttlebay) to Deck One (Bridge).

When the turbolift doors opened, Santos stood for a moment before exiting
and walking on to the bridge of the Vanguard for the first time in five

He almost expected Kieran Darkwater or Craig Kavan to announce his
presence: “Captain on the bridge.”

Santos used his torch on the bridge and swallowed hard when he saw the open
panels and exposed circuitry.

The helmsman’s chair--Mandrake’s chair--had a tear in the right shoulder.
The Science station crewed so capably by Kieran Darkwater was offline. Sam
McCaw’s Engineering panel had a crack in its monitor.

He looked at the captain’s chair. The captain’s chair leaned to one side.

Santos hardly noticed when Pendleton said from behind him, “I’m sorry for
the state she’s in. Once we berthed her in Kayak, she was fair game.
Engineers, scientists, the occasional Ferengi, Pakled, or Kazon--they just
came and took whatever they wanted.”

When Santos failed to respond and simply stood where he was, staring around
the bridge, Pendleton tried to find the right words.

“Again, sir, I’m sorry.”

Santos turned slowly to look at Pendleton. He grinned. “Are you kidding?
She’s the second most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen.”

OoC: We're back. :) I've discussed the Vanguard with a few former players
who are on my Facebook contact list. I'm just as hesitant as they are due
to time commitment and backing away from the fandom, but we're all keen on
giving it another go. Are you?

I've continued to write Santos -- sometimes by myself, sometimes with
another, new player. I can provide some back story. I've also commissioned
the construction of a Web site, and we're working on finding another
application other than Freelists.

If you're interested, join us. I think this can be a very interesting and
unique experience. I always enjoyed everyone's company and building this
shared universe together. Maybe you feel the same. If not, I wish you and
yours a happy new year and good luck in your endeavors, whatever they may

Best, Andrew Ho

USS Vanguard: [Under construction]
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