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There's a New Sheriff in Town, Part I

Posted on Fri Dec 21st, 2018 @ 2:31pm by Colonel Drass Kebron & Lieutenant Commander Ronan Channe & Lieutenant Ba'zra Jennings & Captain (Marine) Roland Hallowes & Lieutenant Marcus Alexander, MD & Lieutenant JG Konebak Zek

Mission: Episode 2: Columbus Ascending
Location: Senior Staff Conference Room, Deck 20
Timeline: January 3rd, 2389 13:00 hours

[Captain's Ready Room, Deck 21 10:30 hours]

After Commander Channe had left his office, Drass had flipped through some of the PADDs that remained on his desk. There were a couple matters that needed to be attended to yet, and one of them was a senior staff briefing. Turning to his terminal, he composed a message to all the Valkyrie's department heads:

To: All Senior Staff
Importance: High
Subject: Senior Staff Briefing

All Department Heads and other Senior Staff,
Report to the Senior Staff Conference Room at 13:00 hours for a Staff Briefing. Attendance is mandatory. Failure to report will result in disciplinary action. Have department readiness reports, personnel needs, and requisition requests available for review.

Colonel Kebron
Commanding Officer, USS Valkyrie


[Senior Staff Conference Room, Deck 20 13:00 hours]

Ba'zra looked at the message. Colonel? Since when does Starfleet fall under the marines? She was beginning to like the changes less and less. Nonetheless, she had no desire to make a bad first impression. She arrived promptly with all the required reports in hand and took a seat with a brief acknowledgment of anyone in the room.

Marcus tugged at the hem of his uniform just before he entered the conference room. He had met Colonel Kebron years ago on Earth at some kind of conference. The details of the event had slipped Marcus's mind, but what he did remember was that the colonel was all marine. He liked everything in top working order. Marcus's uniform was freshly pressed without a wrinkle on it and his boots shined with the fresh polish. He spent time before the briefing to consolidate all of his reports onto one PADD. He would have to be on his best behavior for this commanding officer. As he entered the conference room, he saw the long table before him. A few senior officers had already arrived, and Marcus took his place at the far end of the table.

Ronan entered and slipped into an open seat beside Ba'zra. He dropped a PADD on the table; it had been a scramble getting the required information in so short a time but he had managed to at least assemble the official reports. When the meeting was finished, he would vacate the XO's office and quarters; he no longer held the position after all. Instead, he had resolved to take up residence on the Pearl. Distance being desirable and necessary for his own peace of mind.

Konebak was well prepared when the order had come through for the meeting he was in his own office going through all the reports he needed to get done. So he walked in to the room confident with the PADD he needed in his left hand he didn't make eye contact with Ronan or Ba'zra knowing he didn't need any trouble especially right now. he gave a quick nod and wave to Marcus but sat near the front corner of the table farthest from everyone else and continued to read the reports he brought with him in case he needed the information in a quick manner.

Ba'zra noted the bug's nod and wave to Marcus. Well, it seemed that the new staff had its favorites and Ronan and Ba'zra were not it. She wondered how long it would be before she was transferred. She could only pray that Ronan would be transferred with her. She looked to Ronan for some reassurance.

Ronan returned her glance with one that conveyed assurance. The situation had changed dramatically and for the most part, not for the better though she stood out, a bright spot in an otherwise dark time. Whatever happened, he resolved inwardly, they would face it together.

Years of dictating reports while running in holodecks had allowed Roland to prepare his reports as he consulted with members of department. He was just finishing his report as he approached the conference. "Computer, end report and transfer it to the PADD in my hand." With a tug of his uniform jacket to straighten it, Roland stepped through the door and nodded a greeting to each of the officers seated around the table as he made his way to a seat with a view of the stars. "So, has anybody gotten lost yet on this behemoth" Roland asked a smile spreading across his face as he looked around the table.

While Ronan could appreciate the attempt at lightening the tension in the room, he found it hard to reciprocate though he tried. "I am grateful to the computer's endless patience in providing directions," he answered. "There are 144 decks on this ship ... I wonder if anyone has seen them all as yet."

"I know I've seen a few decks I didn't intend to" Roland replied with a twinkle in his eye. "Didn't turn out bad though. I met a lieutenant in engineering that I'm meeting for drinks later. That is of course if I can find the lounge in time" he continued as he tapped the commands on his PADD that sent his report to the captain.

Catching Ronan's glance, Ba'zra figured the situation was well in hand. Well, this time she was not going to be goaded into an idle conversation that might get her in trouble. She was going to watch, wait, and listen, as Ronan would. Soon enough, she would know what to do.

"Ask directions," Ronan advised Roland quietly. "I'd probably be sleeping in an out of the way corridor otherwise."

"How do you think I met the lieutenant?" Roland replied quietly with a grin on his face. Tough room he thought as he turned his attention to the PADD in front of him with a slight sigh.

Situational awareness was one of the first lessons they had drummed into him at flight school. Years of experience had made it a part of who he was, so although he appeared to be studying the PADD in front of him, he was also watching the entrances to the conference. The meeting was scheduled to start soon and he expected the colonel to appear on the dot. I wonder what a walking mountain looks like in person he thought to himself.

Stuck listening to a wasteful conversation between Ronan and Roland, Konebak couldn't help but sink into his seat with boredom and frustration. "What is taking so long we all have work to do, and instead we are wasting our time waiting."

Ronan slanted a look at the Chief Engineer though he said nothing. Clearly, time in the brig and a formal reprimand had done little to improve his attitude. No longer my concern. It was hard to turn that over to someone who had betrayed the ship. Beyond hard. No longer pack. His time on the holodeck with Baz had healed the disconnect in his mind and left him clear-headed again. My focus must be on the Pearl ... and on the hunt.

Marcus glanced over at Konebak. "I would advise you to work on your patience, Lieutenant." Marcus then looked down at his grandfather's antique wristwatch on his left wrist. He frowned, "he is three minutes late, tho."

A part of Ba'zra could not help but agree with the bug. Another part of her just wanted to spite the bug. However, the part of her that won was the one that was relying on Ronan. So, as difficult as it was for her to remain patient, she grunted, shifted in her seat and tried to find a way to wait out however much time it took for the meeting to start.

As three minutes became five, Ronan reflected on a commanding officer who chose to threaten his senior staff with reprimands as though they were recalcitrant children and then made them wait. Add that to the Colonel's somewhat ridiculous statement that he was essentially relinquishing command of the ship to its former Captain, as far as day to day operations went, and Ronan found himself without expectation of things getting better any time soon. Be the example. Isn't that what instructors in his command courses had said? And since that went for more than just the Captain and XO, neither of whom were present, Ronan resolved to make use of his time in a profitable way. He settled in with the latest round of intelligence reports of syndicate activities and was soon engrossed once more in the hunt.

The door to the Briefing Room slid open and a large form ducked through the opening and lumbered to the head of the table. With rock like skin, beady black eyes, small vertical slits for nostrils, and horizontal slash for a mouth, Colonel Kebron resembled an abstract sculpture more than a sentient lifeform. "I apologize for my tardiness," he said as he set a small package on the conference table, "I recieved a communique from Vice Admiral Collins shortly before the meeting was scheduled to start. Looks like we're just missing Lieutenant th’Eryrakag. Commander Tora will be joining us shortly." He picked up his PADD and made a quick note before continuing.

"I am Colonel Drass Kebron, Commanding Officer of the Marine Battalion attached to this vessel. You all are no doubt wondering why the Marine Battalion Commander has called a Senior Staff meeting. The short answer is that Commander Tora has been demoted to Executive Officer and I have been assigned as Commanding Officer until such a time that Commander Tora is deemed fit to command, or another commanding officer is assigned..."

[Continued]

 

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