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Never a Dull Moment

Posted on 14 Jul 2023 @ 4:06pm by Lieutenant Commander Theodore Marsh III & Captain Harvey Geisler & Lieutenant Zayna Ryler & Lieutenant JG Loran Bolivar & Lieutenant Michael Kenmore & Lieutenant JG Kemm & Lieutenant JG Harleigh Kane

1,566 words; about a 8 minute read

Mission: Return to Razmena
Location: Conference Room
Timeline: June 14, 2390 || 1500 hours

It had only been a few hours since he met with Commanders Reynolds, Di Pasquale, and Geisler where they made the decision to send two Away Teams to Razmena. With that plan now in motion, it was time to brief the remaining senior staff and outline their objectives for the next few days. Thanks to Mila, each officer present would have a PADD with which to review the information Harvey had to share.

His first official senior staff meeting as the Deputy Squadron Commander. Michael didn't know what to expect. He arrived at the conference room and looked around before taking a seat. The first one to get here, he thought. It was hard to get rid of that old mantra that had been drilled into his head at the be early is to be on time and to be on time is to be late.

He nodded at the Captain as he sat down. "Afternoon, Sir."

"Good afternoon, Lieutenant," Harvey greeted, glancing up from the padd he held. "The patrols seem to have been pretty quiet, wouldn't you agree?"

"Yes, Sir," said Michael. "It's been unusually quiet for this part of space. Especially after the run-in with the pirates at the convoy. I never did like the calm before the storm."

The Captain chuckled and set his padd down. "I never did either. I feel like I'm always standing on my toes, waiting for the shoe to drop. Anticipation like that... it's evil."

"I agree," said Michael. "There is something, though, Sir, that I want to toss out before the briefing starts. During the battle with the pirates at the convoy, some of the fighters took quite a bit damage. We've been able to repair most of it. But we did have to pull parts and plates and such from one of the other Valkyries to add to the replicated stuff. I'm afraid that bird is good for only industrial replicator material now. I'd like to request a replacement Valkyrie from Gamma Command. If they have one to spare, that is. Gamma Quadrant and all."

Zayna felt like she was running late, but as she entered the conference room, she only saw the Captain and one other person. She gave both of them a polite nod and went towards her seat. "Here I thought I'd be the last one here."

"Definitely still waiting on a couple of others," Harvey remarked to Zayna as she entered. "And thankfully this meeting isn't pressing and won't be rushed."

Then to Kenmore, he turned and frowned. Shuttles were easy enough to manufacture aboard a starship, but there were just some parts for fighters that had to be created aboard a starbase or special plant. To be down a bird this early after launch... well, Harvey simply didn't like it. "Go ahead and make the request. I don't know how soon we'll be able to see it, especially since we'll be leaving Gavara soon."

Michael gave a simple downward nod of his head in affirmation. "Aye, Sir. I'll write it up and send it before end of duty shift." He turned to the woman who'd just entered and smiled politely, giving the same downward nod to her. Science or Medical...he couldn't be sure either way. But hey, had to meet the others at some point. Can't stay barricaded on the Flight Deck all the time. Or could you?

With an air of quiet confidence, Loran stepped into the conference room. His eyes crossed the room before stopping on the Captain. "Apologies, Captain." He said directly to the Captain. He acknowledged the other officers presence with a courteous nod, "Good afternoon," he greeted them. With a measured pace, he moved to a seat.

"Mister... Bolivar, is it?" Harvey greeted the blue-skinned newcomer. Aside from the Saratoga freeing the Black Hawk from Gavara, she was also able to provide a few new crewmembers, including their new Assistant Chief of Security. "Welcome aboard, and welcome to your first staff briefing."

Loran, using his leg muscles, turned the chair towards the the man at the head of the table. “Thank you, Captain.” Loran replied courtesy. Although in his experience, Department Assistant Chief’s, usually received their orders, from the briefings, via their Department Heads. Only in rare occasions Assistant Chief’s or others attended a briefing with thee Captain. But, from his memory, the majority present were Department Assistants Chiefs.

"I'm the last one, aren't I?" Teddy said as he rushed through the doors and dropped into an open seat.

"Just about," Harvey remarked as Teddy entered. As if on cue, the doors opened once more. The last to arrive were Lieutenants Kemm and Kane, representing Engineering and Medical respectively. They took their seats near the end of the table.

"Thank you all for coming," Harvey greeted the small assembled group. "You'll notice we're missing a few faces today. Commander Reynolds, Commander Di Pasquale, Commander Geisler, Doctor Monroe and Counselor T'Mari are preparing to leave on an away assignment for a few days in hopes we can gather some actionable intel on the pirates. Our newly arrived Lieutenant Bolivar is here to represent security. Representing Engineering is Lieutenant Kemm, and Doctor Kane is here for Medical."

Ryler gave a nod to each as they were mentioned. She didn't know some of them, so putting faces to names was welcome.

Harleigh smiled and nodded her head at the Captain's introduction. She'd never really been addressed as 'Doctor' Kane before, but it felt kind of good.

Loran offered a polite smile at the mention of his name and representing Security. Now, he understood why he was present at this meeting. He, like his colleagues, were now leading their respective Departments.

Harvey continued, "Thank you all for your diligence during our escort mission. I know it wasn't the most exciting assignment, but we made the best of it. The Saratoga arrived this morning to Gavara, and we are now free to resume patrols throughout the quadrant. Before we do that, however, we'll be taking the next few days to put the Black Hawk through a few paces. We all know she's still rather fresh out of drydock and we could all use the chance to get to know her a little better."

The Captain looked to the Operations Chief. "Mister Marsh, as you are the senior-most officer, you'll be pulling double duty as acting XO until Commander Reynolds returns."

"That escalated quickly," Teddy chuckled. "You can count on me, Captain."

To the chiefs of science and engineering, Harvey stated, "I'm anticipating we'll need to push the engines for a bit, as well as test response times, sensor palettes, deflector rating, etc. Anything else we should consider at this time?"

"Possible sensor blind spots," Zayna stated after a moment of thought. "We don't want something hiding in a spot that we can't see. There aren't supposed to be any, but that doesn't mean small ones won't pop up on the tests.

"Agreed, Captain," Kemm stated. "Although our last mission was fairly standard, the pirate attack moved too quickly to really get a feel for our sensors."

The Captain nodded. "Prepare a series of tests and we'll be sure to address them." Then to the deputy security chief, Harvey continued, "Commander Di Pasquale put us all through a series of security drills while we were en route to Gavara. I'm satisfied with their response times, but we didn't get much chance to test out our weapons systems. Any suggestions?"

Loran nodded and leaned forward. “According to the sensor data from Astrometrics, we have an asteroid field nearby. We could use the field initially to test our targeting system and then move on to some more real scenarios.” He paused for a moment, looking at the Engineer. “If we have some spare holoprojectors, these can be mounted onto probes to generate holographic enemy vessels, either inside or outside the asteroid field. This could not only test the weapon systems but also the engine responsiveness at impulse and thruster level during combat situations.” He suggested turning his gaze finally back to the Captain.

Harvey paused for a second, considering the deputy chief's suggestion. "Sounds like the asteroid field will check off a few boxes for us. Weapons simulations, sensor tests." Then he looked over to Lieutenant Kenmore and added, "Perhaps it would be a good place for the squadron to get some flight time in."

"I think that's a fine idea," said Michael. "Maybe even get a little target practice on the asteroids. Make some big rocks into smaller rocks."

"In any rate," continued Harvey, "it sounds like we've got the beginnings of a plan. Doctor Kane, I haven't forgotten you. I'm sure the medical staff has plenty to do, so I'll leave you to your devices. As for the rest of you, submit your plans to Mister Marsh by 0700 tomorrow morning. We'll be departing Gavara around 1100 hours, with our destination being the asteroid field. Any final thoughts?"

Harleigh nodded. There was plenty to do in Sickbay. And if things didn't go their way, she'd need to have everything ready, medical teams and all.

The Captain smiled and nodded to the assembled group of officers. "All right then. Let's make preparations to get underway. Dismissed."

As Teddy stood up, he took a deep breath. Acting XO, he thought. Didn't see that coming.


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