VIEW FROM THE STRATOSPHERE (sketch)
Updated: Oct 23, 2019
By Nathan Warner
Captain Pike comes to the aid of a planet rapidly heating up on the inside from an unknown source
The U.S.S. Enterprise entered the upper reaches of the stratosphere on Cavet V as it attempts to aid a planet with a mysteriously rapidly heating core. The recently warp-capable Bicalli people were helpless with the situation and only had a few warp ships capable of evacuating the planet. Captain Christopher Pike sent out a distress call for any Federation vessels in the area to come and aid an evacuation, but it was going to take a few hours for the first of them to arrive.
"Not soon enough, Captain," Lt. Spock observed from his science station. "The planet will be uninhabitable in 47 minutes and 12 seconds."
"Okay, we'll have to solve this ourselves," Pike mused and then stood from his command chair. "Ensign Barrymore, bring the phasers online - we're going to help relieve the pressure in a controlled manner to buy us some time."
In less than a minute, blue beams of energy lanced out from the Constitution class vessel and sliced incisions through the crust into the mantle to help alleviate the building heat and pressure, and to keep the magma from mixing with the continental crust, which would make it increasingly viscous and prone to explosive eruptions like the volcanic winter caused by the Yellowstone Caldera back on Pike's home planet of Earth.
Pike nodded with satisfaction as the phasers finished cutting the first long incision in the continental crust below and less dangerous lava began flowing out toward the oceanic basin.
"Like scoring a baking potato," he smiled, much to Lt. Spock's confusion. Captain Pike motioned to the helm.
"Take us two degrees longitude and set up another scoring," he ordered. The Enterprise adjusted its heading and surged towards its next target, while Spock busied himself at his station, studying the sensor analysis of the planet's convulsions.
What is causing the alterations to the planet's core? he wondered. Is it natural or are there sinister forces at work? They would have to investigate.