Braces, Clamps, and Gel Packs. Oh my!
Location: Science Lab
Summary: Commander Djinx and Lieutenants Ryler and Kemm arrive at the Science Lab to see what the anomaly had damaged this time.
Timeline: Mission Day 3 at 1300
Zayna led the two of them into her lab, still trying to think what could cause this and hoping for a fix. They first had to find the exact source. However, she went over to where the scans had said another source of rust was and sighed. "Shall we?"
Kemm nodded and removed an access panel from under the primary workstation. "Oh my..." The open panel revealed an inactive, and severely rusted EPS tap. Around it was a bioneural gel pack. Normally it shone vibrantly, the blue gel glowing under a continuous energy. This pack, instead was a motted brown, the sac yellowed, all surrounded by a putrid odor.
"When was the last time you used this workstation?" Kemm asked Ryler.
Taking step closer as Kemm removed the panel, Zayna's eyes went wide. "It's been a bit, I can't remember for sure." Once the smell hit her, she stepped back. "Oh wow...that's disgusting."
Kemm looked over to Ryler. "Can you access the workstation's access logs and see when the station was last used? That should give us a timeframe to begin our search."
Arjin grinded his teeth when he saw the state the station was in. He walked over to a secondary station. Luckily that one was not affected by the rust. He entered his command codes and accessed the data logs telling when and who had used the science stations. “The main station was last used five days ago by Ensign T’Rul.”, he spoke sharing the info with both other officers.
Looking over at Arjin, Zay nodded, "That sounds about right. I know it wasn't me, and T'Rul was in here around 5 days ago. Though, I thought it was a week ago, days blend together." She looked back towards the workstation before going towards the console Arjin just used and activated a forcefield around everything, hoping more to block the smell than anything else. "T'Rul didn't mention anything to me about this."
"It's possible T'Rul didn't know," Kemm supposed. "Just like with the bulkhead bracing in the life support generator and the lifeboat clamps. Sometime between usage and now, the items have aged significantly. What matters is how and why it's happening. Those elusive answers will finally give us what we need. Now, all bioneural gelpacks are continuously connected with the computer, and their health monitored there. If we can access the monitoring logs, we should be able to determine when exactly this gelpack failed."
"Sounds like the best place to start. How this never alerted on the system is beyond me, unless something along the line picked up the slack." Zayna moved over to another console and worked on bringing up the monitoring logs. "Kemm, you're the engineer, you'd know exactly what to look for in this." She moved through the list until she managed to get to the gelpacks in the labs.
Arjin waited until the engineer would have analyzed the logs. It would not surprise him the packs started degrading shortly after the last use.
Kemm tapped away at a nearby diagnostic console, quickly reviewing the access logs. "Looks like... that's odd." The Kelpien looked up at the rest of the group. "It looks like the gelpack failed an hour ago. The alert was already sent to Operations, but they just haven't assigned someone to check out the situation yet."
Zayna raised an eyebrow. "An hour ago? At least we know our scans can find current issues. But, with that, we need to find the focal point of this before it starts getting worse."
"The fact that it's recent could work in our favor," observed Kemm. "Do the science labs possess any advanced sensor palettes? I'd assume with the various experiments conducted in these rooms, you'd need to keep an eye on every variable. Perhaps they picked up something if they've been recording for the last couple of hours."
"We should, I've just never given it a second thought." Zay moved to one of the regular consoles where she normally kept the information. "Let's see what we've got." She moved a few things around on the screen. "Well, all the data is here at least."
"Let's start with a visual record," Kemm suggested. "Start it about ten seconds before the gelpack decayed." As it began to play, nothing appeared to be amiss. The visual record, about eight seconds in, began to flash and fritz, showing hues of blue and purple throughout parts of the room, lasting less than a second.
Zayna stared at the screen for a moment. "What the hell? Computer, rewind image to 2 seconds before the end of the requested timeframe and freeze."
The visual record rewound as requested and paused. In front of all three officers, the screen held steady on a frozen image of the science lab. Most of the screen was lit up with soft shades of blue and purple, though the concentration was clearly in a thin, bright white line where the hues intersected.
"Glad no one was in here but...I've never seen anything dealing with temporal research appear like this. And after the recording ends...that's when the computer registered the gelpacks malfunctioning, right?"
"That's what it looks like." Kemm studied the paused image. "Look at this," he said, pointing to the area under the workstation. "The line disappears here when it intersects the console. Notice how it widens slightly just before that."
Looking more closely, Zayna frowned. "What the hell is causing this?"
Kemm shrugged. "This is where I come up short," he told both Ryler and Djinx. "Whatever this is is some sort of interstellar phenomena. And, we've been traveling, so likely it's something we've snagged. But, we definitely have some vectors we can work with now."
"Its something. But we've got to work on this quickly, else we could run into some major systems being hit with this." Ryler looked to Kemm. "Keep an eye on anything else doing this," she nodded to the monitor, "And I guess we'll work on the science end to see if we can sort it." Her eyes turned to Djinx.
"Anything would help," Kemm supposed. "Knowing what exactly we're looking at will help us start to isolate these events, and hopefully stop them from happening. And now that we know this affects more than the material and can drastically harm biological matter, the last thing we need is for this to hit an unsuspecting crewman."
“I would rather not see that happening.”, Arjin added. “We will take the Science part in hand as you said Lieutenant. I will even let you take the lead in this, considering your expertise with Temporal Science.”
Zayna gave them both a nod, "I'll keep working in here. See what I can come up with."
Kemm nodded. "In the meantime, I have a few components to replace. There's nothing I can do about the life support bracing, but the lifeboat clamps and the gel pack I can do."
With that, Lieutenant Kemm excused himself and left. For now, it was up to the science department to determine what exactly they were dealing with.