Subject: FRONTIER: Playing chicken in an asteroid belt?

SD 70630

>"It might be a nice idea to leave, Lt. Murray's toy appears to have 
>caused a knock-on effect in the belt and a lot of *big* asteroids 
>are coming this way." 

Ramsay reacted immediately, "Full impulse speed, evasive manoeuvres."

The first, which looked more like a small planetoid, was bearing down 
on them very rapidly. They had barely cleared it when another was 
clearly visible behind it.

Houston, who had been monitoring the situation closley, came to a 
conclusion rapidly. The weapon's immense kinetic energy had been 
spread throughout the belt, which was expanding at a phenomenal rate.
If corrective action were not taken soon, they would be closed in by 
asteroids. The problem being, they could not match the faster-moving  
bodies even at full impulse. "Captain, if we continue in this 
approximate direction, we will encounter an impassable region of the 
belt in two minutes thirty-three seconds."

Ishara's expression was intense as she studied the navigation console.
"It's too dangerous to move across the belt. I can't seem to find a 
safe window out through on any heading, Captain."

"Great." he muttered. In almost the same second, he had an idea. A 
very risky idea, but one which might just buy them a ticket out of 
here. "Lieutenant, are there any nearby bodies which are moving slower
than us?"

He waited impatiently as Houston and Ishara scanned the area and 
compared data. Finally, Ishara replied, "There is one just ahead sir."
She pointed to it on the viewscreen briefly.

"Take us to a position just behind it." he continued, hoping his 
gamble would pay off.

Caroline had apparently caught on to his idea. "You're going to use it
as a shield?"

"That was the general idea." replied the captain.

"Now in position, sir." reported Ishara.

"Good. Get ready to move us off if anything collides with it." Ramsay 
turned his attention to the tactical officer. "Mr. Murray, what do we 
have in the way of shields?"

Murray was working on it in earnest, mustering whatever he could get 
from the tiny power fraction they had left to raise the shields. 
"About twenty percent and rising, sir." He felt a twinge of remorse 
for putting the ship in such a dangerous predicament. But there was no
time for it, he could do better by concentrating fully on the job at 
hand, which was by no means easy.

Houston reported, "Sir, our cover is about to sustain a major 
collision." On the screen, the crew watched as the asteroid they had 
been shadowing was struck from the side by a lesser body and 

"Find us another one, quickly!" ordered Ramsay, his tone urgent but 
free of the panic which threatened to overwhelm the command training 
he'd focussed on during his cadet years. In this situation, it was not
unusual. Now he could see why he'd been sent a Vulcan FCO and an 
android OPS - quite simply so he would have two cool heads up front 
when things got excruciatingly tense. Like about now, as Ishara guided
the Frontier in behind another asteroid, slightly larger than the one 
they'd been using before.

Everyone breathed a sigh of relief as things settled down a little. 
Now that a plan of escape was clear, it was a touch less tense. Just a
touch though.

As they watched the screen, the asteroids began to thin out a bit 
more. They still had a way to go, but it would be a little easier from

A few minutes later, Lt. Ishara almost jumped in her seat as a window 
out of the asteroid field appeared. "Sir, showing a viable exit 
pathway now."

"About time." replied the captain. "Take us out of here, Lieutenant." 
He looked down at his hands and saw that they were shaking. He 
clenched them tightly and announced, "Number One, you have the 
bridge." As he left his seat for the turbolift, Ramsay added, "And 
don't fire off any more of those fancy weapons until we've had a 
better look at their side-effects." 

And with that he left the bridge, keen on relaxing after this
incident. He checked his chronometer and noted that Alpha shift
had ended two hours ago and he was missing badly-needed sleep. Well, 
it was hardly like he was going to walk out on an emergency situation
just because he was supposed to get eight good hours a day. He got the
feeling that this mission would take a lot out of him.

                       Respectfully submitted:

                            Sam M. Edwards
                  [Captain] Will Ramsay, CO FRONTIER
                 [Cmdr] Caroline Ramsay, XO FRONTIER
               [LtCmdr] Joanna Houston, 2O/OPS FRONTIER

                     "Eat any good books lately?"

Frontier Logs