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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 5:00 pm 
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Johnnie Lyle wrote:
Craiglxviii wrote:
Micael wrote:
jemhouston:
Might be that he'll need his good start.

Johnnie Lyle:
1. I think you're doing the glorious Mikeyverse a disservice by comparing this to it. This is comparatively a speck of dirt. ;)

2. Not quite. But yes, or wait... 8-)

3. There is no secondary hull. The Black Prince is a fairly small, compact design. A rough analogue would be a larger, older version of the Enterprise-E's Captain's yacht.

Jimbeamer5:
That's disturbing. :) But pretty funny. :lol:

Craiglxviii:
Thanks man! :D

MikeKozlowski:
Thank you very much. There's a possibility that that's not the last we'll see of that coffee cup. ;)


YAVW!

The coffee cup needs to become a set piece all of its own- nay, a character. It's quite likely that it has either (if the ship is old) served every Senior Chief aboard for the life of the ship, or been in the Senior Chief's family going back to the days of the old Earth wet navy............

If we're getting all Trek here, we do need to know what ship type the Black Prince is. 5 decks implies a saucer-and-nacelle-only design of some sort, perhaps a frigate (FFG if we're staying with the SFB-theme of the Mikeyverse?) sooooooooooo pics or we don't believe you :D

Heavy war destroyer:
Image

Perfect for these kinds of missions.

Though a TOS-style Miranda has a certain swagger:


Miranda is a CL though (NCL)... I like the HDW, but something about the description of the ship in this story screams "frigate" to me. Maybe it's the catastrophic damage taken, and frigates do have seriously different shield/ firepower ratios to cruisers and even destroyers

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 5:08 pm 
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Chapter 2

Outside phaser bank 1 compartment, Black Prince

Sergeant Anson followed the movements of his Macos carefully on the monitor. Once he felt that the aid station was running smoothly he’d started setting up a second detail and focused on that.
First you fight the battle. Then you tend to the wounded. Finally, you retrieve your dead. Don’t leave anyone behind.
Anson had decided that the Macos would take care of that too, the ship’s crew were busy as it was but the Macos were all EVA trained and they had their own space combat suits with them.
Wasn’t that fortunate.
He grimaced. No one could see him now, he could loosen up the stone face he kept up in front of the others. Another body had come into view. Frozen stiff by the cold and with an expression of sheer horror preserved in its glazed over eyes.
It wasn’t the first time Anson had seen dead bodies subjected to the conditions of space but it was difficult to get used to. It was that look, they all had it. They knew they were about to die.

It was a cumbersome task, for each body they found the Macos had to attach a harness. Then pull it to the floor hatch at the end of the corridor, drop it down through two hatches into the phaser bank compartment.
At first Anson had devised a much simpler plan, use the cafeteria as an airlock, drag every body in there and then repressurize. Once they didn’t have to work in vacuum it’d be easier to move the bodies on.
But when he’d suggested it to that engineering Chief he’d balked.

After a lenghty lecture on collision bulkheads and how the one between the cafeteria and the rest of deck five had some sort of critical function and could not be opened right now he’d been ready to give up.
However the phaser bank compartments were significantly reinforced and had guaranteed air tight seals in order to contain potential explosions, and it so happened that compartment one had a a vertical access hatch from deck five above and a horizontal one from deck six where it was located.

Anson had almost asked the Chief in a terse tone why he hadn’t led with that piece of information but bit his tounge. Especially impressive restraint seeing as Nikka had thumped his coffee cup in Anson’s chest to underscore his point. These damn Starfleet engineering types, what’s wrong with them?

“Sergeant.” The radio crackled. “We’ve searched the whole area now. I count nineteen bodies.”
The young Corporal he’d put in charge sounded apologetic. Nineteen out of thirty-five.
But Anson suspected that it was a specific body that was behind the Corporal’s tone. Their platoon leader wasn’t among those that they had recovered.
So much for not leaving anyone behind.

“All right. Come out now and reset the suits. We have more work to do.”
Step four. Get ready for the next battle.



Main engineering control, Black Prince.


Wilsk had decided that he needed to show himself to the crew so once a couple of his more experienced junior enlisted bridge crew had reported for duty, complete with bandages, he’d decided that V’lok and Th’tavar could handle themselves for a few minutes and had set off.

When he got off the bridge he’d wondered how bad their injuries were. One had an arm in a sling, perhaps not too bad all things considered. But the other had what looked like plasma burns up her neck, how far down they reached he didn’t know.
Probably on painkillers both of them, how long would it keep them going before they started to loose focus, make simple mistakes?
Another item to add to the growing list of things I don’t know but need to find out.

He’d made a stop in the mess hall and gotten an update from the Maco nurse. Everyone was expected to make it. Thank you.
He’d made some awkvard small talk with the injured crewmembers. The usual stuff, and they’d responded in like. It felt stiff, and he’d quickly excused himself. Very busy and all that.
When he’d stepped into the corridor he’d felt relieved, and then immediately afterwards guilty. The burdens of command.

But now he’d made it to engineering and it hadn’t taken long to find Nikka hunched over a console.
Better keep it to the point.
“One hour left. Are you on track?”
The Chief looked up.
“Yes and no. I’ll get us to warp all right, but I wouldn’t recommend going to more than warp four.”
“Trouble with the plasma conduits?” Wilsk asked. Don’t tell me that there’s even more damage than we thought.
He wasn’t prepared for what the Chief said next.

“No, but I’ve had a chance to take a closer look at why the conduits on deck five overloaded. As I figured it was because they were at peak capacity.” He hesitated before continuing.
“The spike in power demand when the shields were raised came at the exact same time as the enemy weapon hit.”

The realization hit Wilsk like a punch in the gut.
He’d given the order to raise the shields.
It’d been a reflex, once V’lok had reported a massive energy phenomenon appearing that close to the ship he’d acted as every tactical drill he’d ever gone through had pounded into him to do without thinking.
Shields! He’d practically screamed it at Th’tavar and the ensign had slammed his hand down on the button with a startled look on his face.
If it’d been a more inexperienced officer of the watch it’d probably have taken longer. Only a matter of seconds but that was an eternity in this case.
They could have been alive.

“Anyway” Nikka spoke again. “If we go to high warp the deflector will cause similar periodic spikes in the system given the state it’s in now. If they show up and take another shot at us without warning the same thing might happen, perhaps something worse. Warp four gives us a reasonable safety margin.”
Wilsk didn’t reply at first. Then nodded. “Okay, we’ll stick to warp four.”
This time it was his time to hesitate.
“Anything else I need to know about?”
“No Sir, nothing that you don’t already know.”
Nikka gave him an apologetic look but was quiet. He knew the implications before Wilsk did and had probably tried to figure out a way to give the news to him as softly as possible.

Once Wilsk turned the first corner and was alone in the corridor he slammed his fist into the bulkhead. Hard. He looked at his knuckles, the skin had broken on three of them.
Thirty-five.
Then he started walking for the bridge again, faster than before.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 6:04 pm 
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I'm enjoying this story and look forward to more.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 6:18 pm 
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...Keep going.....:D

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 7:50 pm 
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James and Mike:
Thanks!

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 7:58 pm 
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Craiglxviii wrote:
Miranda is a CL though (NCL)... I like the HDW, but something about the description of the ship in this story screams "frigate" to me. Maybe it's the catastrophic damage taken, and frigates do have seriously different shield/ firepower ratios to cruisers and even destroyers.

Depends on the era, though.

Reliant was death on ice skates in 2285, with at least ten phaser batteries and four photon tubes. Reliant was also twenty-odd years old, having been under repair in 2267 during Kirk's court martial. But, by 2364, they were relegated to second-line duties, behind the Constellation and absolutely ubiquitous Excelsior class ships just a little bit newer than Miranda.

She's not the NCL, though. The NCL has two nacelles above the hull:
Image

I got the sense Black Prince was small, but an LT as department head on a DD is about right. The name fits with other DD names.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 8:01 pm 
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Shields up may have caused the conduits to go, but shields down and the damage outside deck 5 may have been much worse.

Keep it up.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 8:05 pm 
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Johnnie Lyle wrote:
Shields up may have caused the conduits to go, but shields down and the damage outside deck 5 may have been much worse.

Keep it up.


You mean like a expanding plasma cloud with a small debris field?

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 8:19 pm 
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jemhouston wrote:
Johnnie Lyle wrote:
Shields up may have caused the conduits to go, but shields down and the damage outside deck 5 may have been much worse.

Keep it up.


You mean like a expanding plasma cloud with a small debris field?

Or a lifechanging experience with Danish space marauders.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 2:16 am 
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Johnnie Lyle wrote:
Craiglxviii wrote:
Miranda is a CL though (NCL)... I like the HDW, but something about the description of the ship in this story screams "frigate" to me. Maybe it's the catastrophic damage taken, and frigates do have seriously different shield/ firepower ratios to cruisers and even destroyers.

Depends on the era, though.

Reliant was death on ice skates in 2285, with at least ten phaser batteries and four photon tubes. Reliant was also twenty-odd years old, having been under repair in 2267 during Kirk's court martial. But, by 2364, they were relegated to second-line duties, behind the Constellation and absolutely ubiquitous Excelsior class ships just a little bit newer than Miranda.

She's not the NCL, though. The NCL has two nacelles above the hull:
Image

I got the sense Black Prince was small, but an LT as department head on a DD is about right. The name fits with other DD names.


Ah maybe the Mirandas were NCAs then. That would make sense IIRC.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 3:03 pm 
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Chapter 3

Engineering control, Black Prince

Chief Nikka looked at the two engineering techs through the glass wall. They were each standing by a plasma conduit, bulky orange instruments pressed against them.
First one of them gave a thumbs up, then the other.
“Showtime” he muttered to himself.
He took a deep breath and tapped the comms panel, “Bridge from engineering. We’re ready to go for warp when you are.”
The reply was immediate, the unmistakable voice of Wilsk came over the speaker. “Stand by for warp in 30 seconds. Keep this channel open.”
Nikka’s gaze drifted towards a row of square red and yellow covers at the top of the console in front of him.
He stopped when he got to the one on the far right.
-PLASMA GRID 1 EMERG VENT- was written on it.
He flipped open the cover and waited. Better be safe than sorry.

He heard Wilsk over the comms channel doing something unusual, counting down to warp. “Three...two...one...go!”
The glow from the plasma conduits’ inspection openings brightened and the humming from the warp core intensified. But the thumbs of both the techs were still up as they looked intently on the screens of their instruments.
Nikka leaned forward in his chair and glanced at the data being displayed. All the other systems that mattered were in the green as well. He flipped down the red and yellow cover again.
“Bridge, all’s good. See you in a bit.”
He motioned for the two techs to come over to the console. They’d already gotten their instructions so he settled for a “Good job” as he started walking towards the door.
Almost forgot.

A glance to his left confirmed what he’d expected. When the main power came on so did the hot beverage dispensers.
With a grin he placed the most useful tool he had - he made sure to emphasize that to every rookie he came across - into the opening of the dispenser and watched as pitch black coffee poured down into his battered, belowed cup.

Bridge, Black Prince

Underway, finally underway.
Wilsk had gotten more to think about in the past hour or so since he’d gotten back to the bridge.
As soon as he’d walked in V’lok had handed him not one but two messages from Starfleet Command.
The first was pretty much what he had expected, a request for clarification and more details and an order to proceed to Starbase 278 and investigate why comms had been lost.
It also informed Wilsk that the Black Prince was the closest ship to the Starbase, he’d figured that too. The base was under construction and in limited operation, not many ships heading there right now except for those carrying additional personnel.
That was why they were there to begin with, they were supposed to drop off the Maco platoon at the Starbase before continuing on with other missions. Well, they might still.

But when he saw the contents of the second message with a later timestamp he stopped thinking about that.

TO: ALL FLT
FROM: STRFLTCMD

ORDER: ENACT CONTINGENCY GAMMA-GAMMA-GAMMA
-AUTHORIZED BY CINCSTRFLT-


Commander-in-chief Starfleet. They’d bumped it up to the big guy. Wilsk stared at the message. He’d never heard of any ‘gamma-gamma-gamma’ contingency plan.
“V’lok, join me in the ready room please.”
Once they were both inside and the door closed behind them Wilsk opened a cabinet halfway up the wall and looked inside. “Computer, open command security locker. WIlsk pi-gamma 24-45.”
The locker that had been hidden inside the cabinet slid open without a sound.

He pulled out a large red binder with TOP SECRET written on it. In this era of datapads this was something seldom seen, good old fashioned paper documents. Well, the sheets were made from some sort of durable polymer rather than paper but close enough he figured.

He found what he was looking for and put in down on the desk so that V’lok could see as well.
It was also V’lok that spoke first.
“Captain, this would appear to supersede our orders in the first message.”
Wilsk had a hard time arguing with that. As laid out in the binder, contingency plan gamma-gamma-gamma meant the immediate fallback of all Starfleet ships to the core systems. Earth, Vulcan, Andoria and so on.
They’re leaving the outer worlds to fend for themselves.

He made up his mind quickly.

“V’lok. They way I figure it this message was intended for the whole fleet but we also got specific orders intended for the Black Prince alone. I intend to carry those out before we follow the instructions in the contingency plan. The people on that Starbase may need our help.”
Wilsk observed V’lok carefully as he stopped talking, he hadn’t even convinced himself with that line of reasoning and was certain that a vulcan wouldn’t have been either.
But V’lok simply said “Captain’s priviledge.” and that was that.
Who said they couldn’t be flexible when it suited them.


Main cargo bay, Black Prince

As soon as more and more Macos had become available Sergeant Anson had put them to work pulling out all the space combat suits from their transport containers and plugged them in to the ship’s power supply to top up the power cell charges. Then he’d had them doublecheck all of their weapons and when they’d finished that they’d gotten to do dry runs of breech and entry procedures.
All the while with Anson observing and correcting them.

The burly sergeant wasn’t exactly sure what they were up against but he figured that if what had happened to the ship had also happened to the Starbase that could mean vacuum, zero gravity and...something to shoot at for his Macos.
If that was the case he intended to be ready for it.
He’d gotten confirmation that he’d been on the right track when Wilsk had called from the bridge and asked him to prepare for a search and rescue mission, possibly in vacuum and zero G.
He hadn’t mentioned anything to shoot at though but those Starfleet officers all thought of Macos as trigger happy nutjobs so he probably thought it came with the package.

He listened as Wilsk came on the speakers again, shipwide this time. Ten minutes until they reach Starbase 278.
“Suit up!” As he gave the command the Macos started scurrying about and began climbing into the bulky combat suits. He waited for a moment to make sure no one was dragging their feet behind them before he started to do the same.

Bridge, Black Prince

“You’re going to have to walk me through this. What am I looking at?”
Wilsk peered at the strange, jagged image being displayed on the wall panel.
“This is the ship that attacked us.” Th’tavar offered. Not too helpful.
“Thank you ensign, that much I gathered.” Wilsk replied wryly.
It doesn’t look like any ship I’ve ever seen.
“We belive that the structure of the vessel corroborates our earlier hypothesis that it is malfunctioning in some way.” V’lok had decided to have a go Wilsk noted.
“How?” Wilsk still couldn’t make sense of the image, it looked like a giant shard. Sharp, assymetrical. Like a giant had taken a hammer and chipped it away from boulder.
“Observe the very center. When going through the scans we managed to secure in our brief encounter we were able to isolate a mass with different density and symmetry.”
“Still not following you V’lok.” Wilsk was starting to feel irritated again.
V’lok pressed a few buttons and the image zoomed in. Now he saw it.
A cube.

“It appears to be near perfect in symmetry. A radical departure from the rest of the vessel.”
Now it was Th’tavar’s turn again.
“Captain it’s possible that the assymetrical outer shell and the inner cube does not have the same origin. The differences between the two are in every way we’re able to measure, dramatic. Yet they appear intertwined.”
Now Wilsk was starting to catch up.
“So...you’re saying...” he began before Th’tavar filled in the rest. “That the outer shell has, for lack of a better analogy, swallowed the cube and is having indigestion."
Oh.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 3:17 pm 
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Dun dun dun!

I knew it was marauding space Danes . . .

Presumably, the gamma, gamma, gamma was a signal for heading to Wolf 359? Or is this set later?

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 3:19 pm 
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OSCAR SIERRA, I SAY AGAIN, OSCAR SIERRA, OVER

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 3:50 pm 
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Johnnie Lyle wrote:
Dun dun dun!

I knew it was marauding space Danes . . .

Presumably, the gamma, gamma, gamma was a signal for heading to Wolf 359? Or is this set later?

Before, this is in the Enterprise-C era.
So "cube" doesn't ring the same bells as it would a bit later. ;)
But there will be some more clarity along the way I hope, how it fits in with those events and so on.

To add a bit to the discussion of what type of ship the Black Prince she's technically a destroyer but a small one. In my envisioning the class was originally conceived as a cost cutting measure under the project name Light Deep Space Patrol Vessel with the intent of creating a smaller substitute - so cheaper to crew and maintain - but with similar armament and endurance to the full sized destroyers.
The Black Prince was thus the second ship in the Iron Duke-class (the class had been intended to feature historic Royal Navy names) and also the last, the compromises made were too great and only after a corrective refit was she put in active service, albeit usually with more mundane taskings than her bigger brethren.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 4:14 pm 
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Micael, we can probably dig you out a proper ship type from SFB if you can bear the discussion. I'm still in agreement on the HDW although that is a little early, 40 years or so.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 4:16 pm 
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Craiglxviii wrote:
Micael, we can probably dig you out a proper ship type from SFB if you can bear the discussion. I'm still in agreement on the HDW although that is a little early, 40 years or so.

Go ahead and discuss, it'll be interesting to see what you come up with.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 4:21 pm 
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Micael wrote:
Johnnie Lyle wrote:
Dun dun dun!

I knew it was marauding space Danes . . .

Presumably, the gamma, gamma, gamma was a signal for heading to Wolf 359? Or is this set later?

Before, this is in the Enterprise-C era.
So "cube" doesn't ring the same bells as it would a bit later. ;)
But there will be some more clarity along the way I hope, how it fits in with those events and so on.

Nah, it's pretty clear. Some poor Swedish sounding cyberneticists were on their merry way, bringing their fellow space Nordics the benefits of IKEA and flesh-mutilating cybernetic appendages when violently Unionized by evil space Danes at Planet Kalmar.

Micael wrote:
To add a bit to the discussion of what type of ship the Black Prince she's technically a destroyer but a small one. In my envisioning the class was originally conceived as a cost cutting measure under the project name Light Deep Space Patrol Vessel with the intent of creating a smaller substitute - so cheaper to crew and maintain - but with similar armament and endurance to the full sized destroyers.
The Black Prince was thus the second ship in the Iron Duke-class (the class had been intended to feature historic Royal Navy names) and also the last, the compromises made were too great and only after a corrective refit was she put in active service, albeit usually with more mundane taskings than her bigger brethren.

Sounds like a variant of the Constellation class, which herself looks like an outgrowth of the Heavy War Destroyer:
Image

There's also the twin-nacelle Akula class floating around:
Image
Image
Image
Image
I really like the symmetry here, and you can see how she's related to the Constellation class, but still a destroyer.

I think this is close what you're looking for. Perhaps the Iron Dukes are a hybrid of the Akula and the Constellation, mating the primary hull of Constellation to the two-nacelle, two photon tube configuration of the Akulas - smaller and cheaper than a Constellation, less successful, but still useful.

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Last edited by Johnnie Lyle on Sat Sep 23, 2017 5:16 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 4:36 pm 
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The trouble with building ships for mundane duty is they seldom encounter mundane threats outside the inner core. Even then, outsize threats tend to leak in.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 4:49 pm 
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jemhouston wrote:
The trouble with building ships for mundane duty is they seldom encounter mundane threats outside the inner core. Even then, outsize threats tend to leak in.

Aye, but that's been the case since Nog and Og built their first raft.

You need numbers, and that means something that's good enough for most of the tasks it will encounter. For a situation where you get in over your head, you invest in the butt in the center seat, not equipment. That's true for pretty much every navy in every situation.

Overwhelming superiority is good warfighting, but makes for bad storytelling.

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 24, 2017 5:17 am 
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Micael wrote:
“So...you’re saying...” he began before Th’tavar filled in the rest. “That the outer shell has, for lack of a better analogy, swallowed the cube and is having indigestion."
Oh.

I jumped straight to the Naiads from TLA...

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