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Review Of A Disaster

Posted on Sat May 1st, 2021 @ 10:23pm by Lieutenant Commander Evelyn Rozia & Chief Petty Officer Lisa Terrix

Mission: Lower Decks
Location: Engineering Lab 1
Timeline: On the way to Dalacar


Evelyn glanced over at her senior NCO as she finished with her inputs on the program she'd been compiling. "Just about done, Lees." She murmured, eyes focusing again on the screen, "Sorry for keeping you late tonight, but I've finally gotten the last of the reports looked at from the crew of the last Astraea and wanted you here for an experiment." She gave a slight smile.

"Not a problem, Evie," Lisa Terrix shook her head with her own smile, "I am, as always, yours to command." She chuckled slightly, "And I'm guessing you wanted fresh eyes that haven't seen much of anything from the whole incident?" She quirked an eyebrow as her head slightly cocked to the left.

"Bingo." Confirmation, "Now, because of the nature of this, here's the background you need to know: Things started off with malfunctions throughout the ship. Showers losing heat, replicators malfunctioning, program information deleting, etcetera. Nothing that could point to a pattern or source." Evelyn tapped a final button and the screen flashed twice. "All right. I want you to watch this progress, I know that it's incomplete since it's compiled from reports that I'm sure don't catch everything."

"Right." Lisa clasped her hands behind her back and stood back so as to catch everything she could from the program running in front of her. Fifteen minutes later, "Again." She demanded, hands coming around in front of her and landing on the panel in front of her, "Give me control of the playback?"

"No problem." Evelyn said quietly, moving aside and behind. Lisa saw patterns, something there that made sense to her.

Overall, it took the two of them two hours, mostly in silence as the NCO took the simulation forward and back and forward and back again in several places before she finally nodded and stepped back to where Evelyn had appropriated a chair and leaned back.

"What we've got here is a dual-progressive failure. Sure, the initial failures were intentional." The Irish woman raised a hand to forestall any comment, "Intentional. It was a worm that was either a prank or intended to disrupt systems, and it began in ancillary systems."

She stepped back up to the again-reset program and began it again, "Water, minor replicator issues, temperature management, that sort." She waited until the first recorded information deletion popped up, then pointed at it, "This was also an intentional movement, meant to cover their tracks, which without the computers, they probably succeeded very well in doing, but here something went wrong if it were just a prank or meant to delay the Astraea." Lisa exhaled as the program played out again.

"Something in the firewall let it through and it began to take down major systems, more replicator functions, environmental systems, sensors, and the like. Then right here," Lisa pointed to where main engineering's reports had started up, "We see impulse engines misfiring and the warp core destabilizing. Radiation shielding goes down around the reaction chamber and about an hour or so later, Boom when the containment field finally drops, but that wasn't caused by the worm, it had just run out of power because the convertor went offline."

Evelyn just watched, jaw partially dropped as Lisa walked her through the progression, "Worm program gone wrong? How easy is that?"

"Easy enough, especially if one of the targeted programs had a dovetail code with one of the non-targeted." Lisa shrugged, punching up a text representation of an Akira-class program tree on a wide screen view, "Watch this." She ran the program again, but at an increased speed. Parts of the tree remained a steady green as others flashed yellow, then red, then bled over into other portions. Once it passed the firewall between the low-priority programs and the mid-level, it suddenly spread and seemed to accelerate even more until it just hit the second firewall and appeared to pause for a moment then bypass it to continue to the end of the program.

"That's... Kinda freaky, Lees." Evelyn fell back into the chair she'd come out of, then turned serious, "Could you have stopped it? I mean, as it was going on, could you have seen this and saved the ship?"

"Ha!" Lisa laughed as she leaned back against the console, "Twenty percent chance at best. They tried to turn the ship off and then on again, which is what I would have wanted to do, but it didn't work. IF I'd had an inkling of the progression, and if I could have cut off the reaction array somehow, maybe? Could I prevent this from happening in the future to us?" The red head cocked to the side in thought for a few seconds, the bangs drifting in front of one eye, "I think so. It's going to take a lot of work and some special firewalls and security systems, but possibly."

"Then you have your new mission in life, Lisa." Evelyn said quietly, "Whatever you need, whoever you need, make it happen. Don't tell who you don't need to tell, because we may have a saboteur on board and the less they know, the better, but they may have left as well, we don't know." She shook her head slowly, "Can I take it to the Captain?"

"No." Lisa said definitively, "I say it's intentional because that's what I feel it is, but I've got no proof beyond what I think. Give me some time with it and we'll see, okay, Evie?"

"You got it, Lisa." She pried herself out of the chair and to her feet, "Do your best, I know it'll take a while, but... I don't want this happening to my ship."


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