Return to T8A (Ronin)
It was a simple plan. A two day vacation on a planet described as paradise. This paradise planet, officially designated as T8A, had also been called Plenta Del Amor, which was exactly what the two of them needed. Marine 1st Lieutenant Miles Unum and civilian childcare specialist Dr. Talon Lee had been separated by fate too many times until now. They packed lightly and supplemented by a portable replicator for food, drinks, and other necessities. The trip in the spacecraft only took a few hours from DS17 to T8A, and when they arrived, they gathered their luggage and replicated a tent, sleeping bag, and dinner. It was only a fifteen minute walk to Kassa’s Pool where they set up camp. After a light dinner while watching the sunset, they turned in for the night.
When they awoke the next morning, Dr. Lee and Lieutenant Unum walked along the beach toward the spot where they had landed the spacecraft so that they could replicate breakfast. As they approached the landing spot, they found that the spacecraft had been damaged almost beyond recognition with some of the parts still scattered about. It did not appear that a weapon had caused the damage, and whatever had caused it, the two crew members from the USS Ronin knew that they had to find a safe place to hide. They returned to their campsite where they found that it had been ransacked. Gathering what items they could pick up quickly, they left to find a safer place to wait for someone on the Ronin to notice them missing and to come and find them. When Dr. Lee and Lieutenant Unum reached the top of Rhy’s Ridge, Lieutenant Unum noticed that the remains of the spacecraft below had been almost completely devoured. Dr. Lee and Lieutenant Unum surmised that something had eaten the metal because the only items left behind at the landing spot were non-metallic parts. The two of them left for the ruins where Lieutenant Unum thought they would be able to find shelter until the Ronin arrived. Once they reached the ruins just east of Rhy’s Ridge, they prepared to set up markers to let the Ronin crew know where to find them. Before they were able to set up any markers, Dr. Lee and Lieutenant Unum were grabbed by something pliable that wrapped itself around their bodies and pulled them into a cave.
When they were dropped into tunnels beyond the cave, they found themselves in the dark until Dr. Lee found a glowing turtle that provided just enough light to see a few feet around them. They located more glow turtles in the immediate area and searched for a way out on the tunnels. While they searched the tunnels, they found a room with etchings on the walls made by someone with a sophisticated tool. On one of the walls, they found a depiction of Earth and of the Sol system including a drawing of an old-style space ship. Their continued searches of the tunnels revealed another room with something like coconuts that contained liquid and small amounts of meat for nourishment and a bed frame covered with straw. During the next day, Dr. Lee and Lieutenant Unum searched further in the tunnels and found that there was no apparent exit as the tunnels continued in a circular pattern. Subsequent returns to the room with the straw bed offered them bird’s eggs and more coconuts from an unknown source. It became apparent that something was providing for their most basic needs. While Lieutenant Unum examined the room with the etchings of Earth, which they named the classroom, he touched the depiction of Earth on two separate occasions and experienced visions of the room occupied by an unknown woman. The visions only offered more questions than answers as they led Lieutenant Unum to believe that a sentient being was trying to contact him.
On the second day in the tunnels, the Ronin arrived at T8A. Two away teams were established with one led by Commander Turner and the other led by Lieutenant Commander Tallis. The away teams began to search for Dr. Lee and Lieutenant Unum on the ground when they didn’t pick up any life signs from the missing crew members. It wasn’t long before Dr. Lee and Lieutenant Unum were joined by other members of the Ronin crew in the tunnels. There was Lieutenant Gregory, then a young female civilian name Mia, and finally Ensign Anora who remained in shock from her capture. Lieutenant Gregory was found in the classroom after he had been deposited there by the sentient being. Mia appeared in the tunnels near the temporary living quarters, and Ensign Anora was found unconscious on the straw bed in the temporary living quarters.
Lieutenant Gregory and Lieutenant Unum searched through new tunnels that appeared after the newest captured crew members arrived. Dr. Lee cared for Mia and Ensign Anora in the living quarters, and Lieutenant Gregory and Lieutenant Unum located a new room with etchings that appeared to document the despair and ultimate demise of someone who died in that room from the effects of being held in the tunnels for a great length of time.
During the search and rescue operations on the surface, two Marine Falchion fighters crash landed on the southern continent due to simultaneous engine failures. The three pilots, 2nd Lieutenant Kilmister, 2nd Lieutenant Ferguson, and 2nd Lieutenant Kolstoy were later located by 2nd Lieutenant Lex Menar who relayed their positions for emergency transport to Sickbay where they were treated for their injuries. The two Falchion fighters had been devoured by the T8A creature before the pilots were located.
The away teams had been unable to locate and communicate with the creature who appeared to move from the northern and southern continents to the sea and back. Commander Turner and Lieutenant Commander Tallis worked with the away team members to utilize ground and shuttlecraft weapons to create a pain delivery system to convince the T8A creature to release the captured crew.
Meanwhile, Lieutenant Unum and Lieutenant Gregory returned to the classroom where Lieutenant Unum believed the answers lay for them to discover how to escape. He touched the depiction of Earth a final time and was brought into another vision. This final vision was more vivid than the others, and it revealed that the woman was someone who had lived in the same tunnels and rooms the Ronin crew currently occupied now. The woman exhibited a duplicity about her that led Lieutenant Unum to discern that the creature that had kidnapped them was speaking through the mysterious woman. Lieutenant Unum spoke with the creature through the woman explaining the existence of humans and how they needed to live and survive on the surface of a planet and not below in the tunnels. The creature explained that the surface was dangerous and that the creature needed to care for humans below. A back and forth discussion commenced between them, and in the end, it appeared that the creature understood humanity’s need for freedom to thrive. The five Ronin crew members were released through a newly formed opening in the wall of the classroom, and the five crew members moved through the opening to the outside where they found themselves on T’Lara Beach near the ruins where the away teams prepared to implement their weapon. No weapons were deployed when it became obvious that the missing crew had been released and that the missing crew had emerged from an opening inside of the creature. The creature was observed to move from the northern continent into the Atimen Sea where it submerged and disappeared.
Once the five freed crew members explained the creature’s intent to Commander Turner, the commanding officer notified the Ronin crew that they would be leaving the planet immediately. She also advised that the planet would be off limits until Starfleet Command made a decision about T8A’s future in the Federation.