Unpalatable options

After some running, and a few flights of stairs they were at the entrance of Main Engineering control centre. Banks of computer terminals lined the room, and several doorways lead to larger rooms with complex engines and pumps. Several TV screens showed key areas of the ship, like the Promenade where the rodents were sat in their tents, the arboretum showing the Huzards, and many cargo decks and engineering rooms. Many of the lower decks just showed static with the message “camera malfunction”.
It was the screen showing outside the Drive Room that interested the team the most. The Simulants were firing their weapons at the sturdy metal door.
“It won't take long before they're inside.” Said Jay.
Cass and Gomez both hurried to take up positions at a couple of the engineering consoles, Gomez attempting to cajole the systems into action via the JMC engineering interfaces he was so familiar with, while Cass pulled schematics up using the various back doors she had installed as she had gradually integrated the ‘Dwarf’s processes with the Slave system
“Gravity, atmosphere and defence metrics are all either offline or locked” Gomez muttered, his fingers tapping the keyboard, scrolling his way through the various submenus
“I’ll try a re-route” Cass called, executing a few routines by hand and peering up at the schematics with a frown “Where’s the smegging Slave?”
“Ye… No!” Gomez snarled in frustration “Some of the readings spiked out but just flatlined again”
“How about…?”
“No; same” Gomez cracked his knuckles and began rattling away on the keyboard “This used to work on the Sidebottom…”
“Nah; same shit!” Cass reported after a moment, her eyes narrowing as she scanned the schematics “I think Holly’s blocking us or something”
“Yeah” Gomez agreed “Trace ‘n tell seems to indicate that kind of shit; I don’t think we’re going to be able to do a lot from here if he is”
He let this piece of information hang in the air as they all glanced up at the monitor showing the Simulants blasting away at the Drive Room door
“Bugger” Jay muttered, rubbing his face with his hands and looking around at everyone “Any ideas people?”
“There are a few options…” Cass started, frowning as she eyed the monitor showing the Drive Room door beginning to buckle “Best in my opinion would be to just let the Simulants assume control and then use our superior knowledge of the ship to sabotage the systems and then take it all back later on; most of this crate is all smegged up anyway, but without a proper diagnostic we’ve no real idea what we’re giving away or how tough it’ll be to get it back”
“Or…?” Jay asked
“Or I threaten to kill Holly if he cedes control to the Simulants” Cass sighed unhappily “Or I actually do kill him…”
“And you can do that!?” Jay asked, somewhat incredulously
“Yeah” Cass smiled sheepishly up at him “I created Holly, remember? There’s a load of plastic explosives integrated into his build*, along with voice and tamper activated triggers, to name but a few…”
“Bloody hell” Jay muttered, uncertain of whether or not to be impressed or deeply worried that this woman had, unbeknownst to him, wielded so much power on his ship
“On the one hand, if I just threaten Holly” Cass continued “He’s probably going to want to murder me as soon as I let him know I mean business by arming the detonators; and on the other, if I do kill him: We’ve lose more than we could ever know. Neither option really appeals”
“Oh, I don’t know” Seymour cackled “Those risks don’t sound all so bad!”
Cass glanced back up at the monitor, watching the Drive Room door finally blow open in a shower of molten metal and sparks
“I reckon we've a few minutes; what do we fancy doing guys?”

<tag>Anyone got any better ideas?</tag>

* Cass integrated Demex, a plastic explosive, into Holly; you can read about that here: http://www.ongoingworlds.com/games/270/posts/12510

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