Here’s Cass, trying to put one of my insane ideas into action on almost no notice.
Something I appreciated at the time, but REALLY appreciate now, is how much backstopping Cass did/does for me. She’s the genius, and she’s got this really amazing knowledge of all things scientific. So she’ll say that X is possible, given circumstances A through M, and I’ll take that little crumb of an idea and run with it. Then she has to catch up to me and make it all work.
I’ve done this a few times.
And she still loves me.
Now. Lots of news!
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That’s it from here! Enjoy the chapter!
“You want me to do what?”
Cass grimaced. She expected this reaction, but she’d still hoped to avoid it.
“I need someone to be teleported from the shuttle bay to the portal on the Enterprise.”
Kendra had suggested that she ask for volunteers from the Enterprise crew, going to far as to advocate for either the Wolf pilots or the science division. “Pilots are crazy thrill-seekers, or they wouldn’t be pilots, and your science division geeks will be excited to be advancing science. But for Zeus’s sake, don’t ask the guys in Engineering!”
When pressed for a reason why not, Kendra only said their uniforms were red and if she wanted to know more she could look it up.
She’d put out a call for volunteers, and had been pleasantly surprised when a total of fourteen showed up. When she’d asked about using the quantum teleport, three had backed out, leaving her eleven.
And then this question.
“Um, no, thank you, Ma’am,” and several other variations greeted her explanation.
“Thank you for offering,” said Cass with her sunniest smile. “You’re dismissed. Please, return to your posts.”
“Commander,” said one, a CM by the uniform.
“Jammer, Ma’am. From the Frederick.”
“Jammer. What’s your question?”
“Have you tested this, Ma’am? I mean, on people?”
“No. Not on people. I’ve tested it on living things, and it’s been fully successful, at distances far greater than we’re going to test today.”
“Then I’m in, Ma’am.”
Jammer’s acceptance broke the floodgates, and all four of her remaining candidates volunteered. She tried to excuse the other three, deciding to take Jammer’s offer mostly on the basis that he spoke up first. Then Anne Gigluk, a woman about Cass’s age from the science division, got her attention.
“Commander, with all due respect, a single test is not enough to prove a hypothesis. You need multiple subjects, with as much variety of type as possible. You should use all four of us.”
It was a valid point, and thus she ended up with Jammer, Anne, Breena Niew, also from Science, and Steve ‘Cueball’ Combs, the CM from Ataturk.
“I’ll be operating the teleport, with the assistance of both Minerva and Diana,” she said after explaining exactly how the experiment was shaped. “If this is successful –”
“When,” interrupted Gigluk.
“Right. When this is successful, we will have expanded the usefulness of this system a hundred-fold.”
“Commander, is this going to put us out of work?” asked Cueball.
“Not in the least. The maximum range for the teleport is roughly geosynchronous orbit, and –”
“Why, Commander?” said Gigluk.
“Why what? That’s as far as we can project the teleport signal; we don’t have sufficient power to reach beyond geosync.”
“I’m sorry, Commander, but you’re wrong.”
Cass wasn’t prepared for this.
“I assure you, Anne, I worked out all the details.”
“Commander, I’ve studied your work, and your breakthrough in the optical precision is absolutely the key to the process, but let me ask you this. Isn’t it based on quantum teleportation?”
“Yes,” said Cass. She was starting to get into the rhythm of an intellectual debate, something she’d relished in her studies.
“And the benefit to quantum teleportation is that it’s instantaneous over unlimited distance?”
“Then why can’t you teleport over unlimited distance? Assuming a portal at both ends.”
Cass nodded; this was something she’d considered. “Because we can’t communicate the data.”
“Isn’t the data stored using quantum computing, also based on quantum teleportation?”
“Yes, but –”
“One last point, commander. If you built a portal, using the current quantum teleportation linking, and installed it on, say, Lemnos, wouldn’t it be connected to the portals back on Earth?”
Cass started to reply, stopped.
Started again, stopped.
Thought about it.
“Frak me running,” she finally muttered. “Tell me, Anne, what did you do before you joined Starfleet?”
“Experimental quantum technology, and I taught upper division physics and quantum mechanics at Stanford.”
“And you’re doing grunt work on the Enterprise why, exactly?”
“How often does the chance to be part of the crew of the first starship happen?”
“Good point. I think you and I need to have a talk later. Now…”