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A Hard Exterior (Part 2/End)

Posted on Mon Sep 17th, 2018 @ 12:32pm by Lieutenant Commander Ronan Channe & Lieutenant Ba'zra Jennings & Lieutenant JG Konebak Zek
Edited on on Mon Sep 17th, 2018 @ 12:39pm

Mission: Episode 2: Columbus Ascending
Location: Bridge
Timeline: 2389/01/01 - 0800

[Previously]

Ronan, who had already left the Ready Room with the intention of returning to his own office, stopped on the mezzanine. He heard the part of the exchange in stunned disbelief and was already striding down the stairs when the message came through his combadge regarding a probable intruder. "I will assume," he said quietly and though his voice was low it carried with it authority and purpose, "that both of you attended Starfleet Academy where, and I know this from personal experience, they actually taught courses on decorum and the rule of law."

A security team rushed up onto the bridge. They held their phasers out, uncertain at whom they should point it.

[Now]

Ba'zra growled at Ronan. "I was doing as you asked and I do not believe that this alleged Xindi attended Starfleet. I suggested a DNA test to test its veracity of its identity and it reacted negatively."

"It has a name and it's Konebek Zek." Turning to the Commander, Konebek stood firm in his intent towards the Security Chief. "Your Chief of security accused me of lying, being immature due to my age, and now CALLS ME AN INTRUDER." Now yelling and hissing at the Klingon. "YOU THROW INSULT AFTER INSULT AND NOW YOU NEED A SECURITY TEAM TO HELP YOU TAKE ME DOWN A COWARD AND DISHONORABLE ARE YOU SURE YOUR KLINGON."

Growling more fiercely, her perfectly white, smooth human teeth showing, Ba'zra refrained from attacking. Not only would it be a problem if she were wrong but she was pretty sure that Ronan would frown upon it. Instead, she took her Daqtagh from her side and started flipping it expertly. She knew that Ronan would recognize this sign and the moment that the Xindi made a false move, she knew she was going to lodge it inside the ugly insectoid's mandibles. She growled, "I am more certain that I am Klingon than you are who you claim to be."

Ronan held up his hand for silence and then looked at them both. He spoke quietly and in complete control though there was, for the first time since joining the Columbus, true anger kindled in his eyes. "This is a Starfleet vessel and you are, supposedly, senior officers on this ship. I listened to you both from the mezzanine. In point of fact, the entire Bridge was listening to you ... so what I have to say will be equally public." He turned to the Xindi first and continued. "When you come aboard a ship, you are required to comply with the orders given to you. Threatening a superior officer, under any circumstances, is completely unacceptable as was that less than professional display I just witnessed. I am, hereby, placing a formal reprimand in your file for gross insubordination and conduct unbecoming."

He turned toward Ba'zra next and in his expression was true disappointment merged with anger. "And you. For the second time, you have lashed out rather than gather evidence first. Were he a true spy, I would applaud your efforts. But the truth is, you don't know. Not with Poe and not with him. Think ... use that brilliant mind of yours ... and remember, you are a Starfleet officer and this is not a Klingon vessel. I am, hereby, placing a formal reprimand in your file for conduct unbecoming and for gross misconduct."

He motioned to the Security team who stepped forward at once. "Remove Lt. Jennings' weapons. Lieutenant Zek and Lieutenant Jennings are to spend the next twenty-four hours in the brig. Same cell. And while you are there, consider carefully the words you say to me when next we meet. If all of this isn't bad enough, you have both disappointed me. Do not do so again."

Ba'zra looked at Ronan and was stunned. Why was he doing this to her? She was following his orders. Rather than wonder, she growled at him and said, "With due respect, SIR." Her anger and disappointment in Ronan evident in her uttering of the word, "Sir." She then continued, a bit more professionally, "Your orders were to verify his identity before giving full access. I was following your orders to the letter. I was gathering evidence. When I suggested a DNA test, this was the reaction. It justified calling for security."

Ronan sighed. "Verify. Not vilify and certainly, not on the Bridge or any other public place. You could have, for example, restricted his access and informed Lt. Zek that he would not be able to visit sensitive areas of the ship until we verified his identity and then escorted him to medical for a DNA test or ... done the test yourself. You could have explained that we just said good-bye to four crew members when we were duped by a chameloid intruder who all but destroyed the Columbus. If he is any sort of an officer, that would have given him a basis for understanding. In the meantime, you could be checking out his story and verifying what facts you could. And all that could be done without insult or curses."

"People lie all the time, Lieutenant," Ronan continued, dropping now into a more conversational tone. Among his people, they taught the young ones, used experiences to help them grow, and while Baz'ra was actually two years his senior, in some respects, Ronan felt much, much older. "It is always wiser, before you question, to gather evidence so that you already know the answers and you can use that information to trip him up when he gets the facts wrong. Now, if he turned out to be yet another spy, then, gloves come off and I will support you one hundred percent. You know as well as I do that we must assume innocence until proven otherwise ... while still protecting the ship. Yes, I agree that his response was wrong and thus, insubordination. You, however, allowed him to draw a reaction out of you. You lost the advantage. You made assumptions not supported by evidence and you did that all in as humiliating a way as possible ... and then, if that wasn't enough, you pulled your blade ... You do realize, don't you, that criminals will always insult your honor. It's what they do."

Ba'zra shuffled her feet and growled in disgust. The Klingon temper in her was very strong and was more than a little difficult to control. Yet, somehow, Ronan always seemed to bring her back. She did not know whether to be more angry with him or herself at this moment. Worse, he just sentenced her to twenty-four hours with the petaQ. This was definitely not over between the two of them. It was a matter of honor. However, perhaps Ronan was right. She would take care of him in a much more subtle way - resort to her human half.

Still angry from the insults thrown his way Konebak stood ready watching for any aggressive moves from her as he listened to the conversation between Ba'zra and Ronan. Suddenly hearing that they had an enemy spy on board that cost them crew members Konebek immediately retracted his talons and stood straight it finally made sense, why the Security Chief was insulting him and why she didn't trust him. "They didn't tell me, I was only given information on the ships systems they didn't tel me something like that had happened." He said in a somber tone. Konebak was far from worried now about the imprisonment for 24 hours with the Klingon he was now focused on the fact that he let his anger take control of him again he stood straight and clasped his hands behind his back. "Commander I apologize and accept my reprimand and imprisonment."

Ronan nodded and motioned to the security team to continue. They approached Ba'zra first; the older of the two speaking up. It was an awkward moment, as she was the head of Security, but he would do his duty to the ship. "Your weapons, ma'am," he said.

Ronan knew exactly what removing Ba'zra's Daqtagh meant. She would feel naked and exposed. It was not a feeling that she was comfortable with and she was torn between emotions with him. Honor, however, dictated that she complied. Reluctantly, she parted with it and her standard issued phasers. Disgusted, she grunted and avoided eye contact with Ronan. "Let's just get this done with," she complained.

Nodding, the security team gestured for the two officers to precede them and together, they made their way to the brig.

[End]

 

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