Summary: The conclusion to The Probe series.
Timeline: Mission Day 22 at 1300
Joey stood outside the door to T'Mari's private room where a Security guard was standing. With a nod to said guard, the Intelligence Chief gestured for Camila to lead the way inside. "After you, Commander," she said as she briefly wondered how the next few minutes would play out.
T’Mari was sitting on the biobed expecting to be transferred to the brig now she was fit to go. She’d come to terms with having told about her identity, she just had to accept the punishment now.
Camila stepped forward and pressed the chime to the private room and waited for a response.
T’Mari looked towards the door. “Come in”
The Security Chief entered first and gave a polite nod as she stepped aside for Joey. "Lieutenant," she said.
"Lieutenant Rael," Joey greeted as she entered the room and allowed the door to close behind her.
“Ready to take me to the brig?” T’Mari looked at both women. “Just give me a minute to get my things and I’m ready to go.”
"We're not taking you to the brig just yet, Lieutenant, but we are going somewhere more private so we can talk," the Intelligence Chief stated.
T'Mari gave the two a curious look, “Very well” she picked up a small shoulder bag with her things in and nodded she was ready.
Camila looked at Joey. "My office or yours?"
"Yours. My office isn't available for meetings like these given the delicate nature of my department," Joey stated. In fact, special permission was required just to enter in Intelligence Complex if an individual wasn't escorted through by her or the Assistant Chief of Intelligence.
"If you'll come with us, Lieutenant," the Security Chief said as she indicated the doorway.
T’Mari nodded and headed for the doorway. At least it wasn’t a straight trip to the brig, which was what she had been expecting.
Camila led the way back to Security and then to one of the interrogation rooms. "Please, have a seat."
Nodding and walking round to a seat T’Mari sat down, she wasn’t sure entirely what to expect, all she knew was she needed to stay calm and focussed.
Joey walked into the office behind Camila and T'Mari, then moved aside so the door would close behind them. She didn't sit just yet, but clasped her hands behind her back and cleared her throat. "I'm sure you're wondering why you aren't in the brig right now, Lieutenant," she began. "And we will answer that for you, as well as give you an idea of how you can stay out of it indefinitely. Commander di Pasquale, would you do the honors?"
"As you know, we cannot allow you on this ship with the intents that you've stated, Lieutenant," Camila began. "And you don't seem to be very willing as a spy if you confess to what you're intentions are. With that in mind, we would prefer that you stay on the ship, but there's something that you'll be required to do."
T’Mari looked at Camila curiously. “Name it”
"You report to us what you would report to the V'Shar," the Security Chief said. "In addition, you us why they're so interested in the Black Hawk and what they want. In return, you get a limited freedom and you don't go to the brig and lose your career."
Joey finally moved over to a chair, but instead of sitting, she stood behind it and placed her hands against the back. "By limited freedom, you waive your rights to certain parts of your privacy until we feel we're able to trust you," she added. "You will be able to come and go as you please, and fulfill your duties aboard the ship as its head counselor, however, all incoming and outgoing communications, messages, whatever the case may be, will be closely monitored. Should you try to hide or obscure any of them, it will throw up red flags immediately."
T’Mari nodded. “I understand, and I accept those terms and conditions.” She offered a more hopeful smile. “Thank you for this chance, you won’t regret it.”
"You understand that if the V'Shar gets wind of this, you'll be the first person questioned, right?" Camila asked her. "There's no turning back from this, and no one is going to trust you until you earn it."
“If it works out right the V’Shar will be none the wiser” T’Mari offered a brief smile. “If they’ve taught me one thing it’s how to cover my tracks. I used to be happy as I was, but now I’m going to be a mother things need to change. I want my life back!”
Camila went and replicated a PADD, then loaded some material on it and handed it to T'Mari. "I'll need you to read this thoroughly and ask anything you don't understand before you give your thumb print. In a nutshell, you'll be agreeing to be a double agent with all the penalties associated with such waived on the conditions that..." she continued to go over the material, which was all boiled down to 'no, you aren't going to the brig, but you'll end up on an airless asteroid rehabilitation facility if you reveal that you're a double agent to anyone, especially the V'Shar.' When she was done, she looked at her. "Questions?"
T’Mari was afraid, this was a big step to take but she had no choice. “Just one... if anything ever happens to me, if things don’t go as planned then you will personally see to it that my baby is taken care of. This isn’t just my life on the line here, it’s hers too!”
"That's something I can't guarantee," the Security Chief said softly. She may have been hardened by the Gamma Quadrant and her time on the Black Hawk, but she wasn't heartless. "However, I'll do everything in my power to make certain that she gets reunited with her father or his family should things go that way."
T’Mari nodded. “Good enough, thank you” With that she pressed her thumb print to the PADD .It wasn’t like she had much of a choice.
Joey listened as the two women spoke. If anything happened to her, she knew her children would be taken care of. She couldn't imagine what T'Mari was feeling presently. "If anything happens to you, and nothing will, I'll see to it that your daughter is taken care of until family can get to her." She might not trust the counselor, but she still didn't want anything bad to happen to her or her baby.
“That’s all I ask, nothing more” T’Mari offered Joey a brief smile. “When I was younger being part of the V’Shar was a thrill, it made me feel important. Now... it just feels like a chain around my neck! One that rules my life. Well... no more! I’m taking control back.”
"Yes, you are and we'll be here to help you," Camila told her.
Joey smiled. "I'm glad to hear you want to take control back, and like Camila said, we'll be here to help. If you need it, all you have to do is reach out and ask."
“Ohh I will” T’Mari offered a happier smile. “On that point I’m going to need to come up with a plausible reason why I’ve suddenly been let off the hook. My father isn’t going to believe any old excuse, he’s old school and he’s extremely thorough.”
"How much time do you think there will be before he tries to contact you?" The Chief of Intelligence asked.
“Knowing my father, not long” T’Mari sighed. “He’s the one person I don’t like deceiving, he is my father after all. It’s not like I have much of a choice though.”
"We'll get you through it," Camila said.
T’Mari nodded. “Thank you, both of you I appreciate you giving me this chance and I won’t fail you.”
"Don't," the Security Chief said simply before she turned to head out, leaving Joey to follow or leave advice of her own.
T’Mari looked at Joey. “I’ll have to contact my father, I’m not sure yet when I’m going to say!”
Joey watched Camila walk out, then turned her attention back to T'Mari. She expected a little more help from the Security Chief, but she'd do what she could to get the counselor out of whatever hot water might come about with her father. "Why not tell him a slight version of the truth?" She suggested. "Tell him you struck a deal with us. Make him believe that you've led us to believe you're going to be loyal to us, but in reality, will remain loyal to the V'Shar. After all, you can't possibly continue to do so while being stuck in a brig while waiting for a trial to happen, could you?"
T’Mari nodded. “I will endeavour to do just that, thank you as well for trusting me to do this, and giving me a second chance.”
Joey shook her head. "I don't trust you, Lieutenant. Not yet, at least," she clarified. "This is your one opportunity to earn it, though, and it's not just mine on the line. You're also earning Commander di Pasquale's and the Captain's as well. There's a lot on the line."
“I know” T’Mari nodded. “I will earn that trust, that I swear to you.”
"I hope so," Joey said. "If you need me, don't hesitate to reach out. Now, why don't people walk you to your office? I'm sure you'd like to finally get yourself acquainted with your office and the rest of the ship."
“Indeed I would” T’Mari smiled warmly. “I have a lot of catching up to do.”