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Mission 0: All Aboard 
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Post Re: Mission 0: All Aboard
[Shuttle to Antares Fleet Yard, Pre-MD 1]

Paran stood as the shuttle completed docking with Antares Fleet Yard. Shouldering his pack, he walked calmly to the door and patiently waited for it to open. As the door slid open, the quiet of the shuttle was quickly replaced with the cacophony of a transport hub. His transfer orders firmly in hand, Paran strode confidently into the swarm of people before him. Though not tall by Antarian standards, he is very solidly built and certainly not above shoving his way through a crowd to get through quickly.

As he was pushing his way through the crowd, he mistakenly knocked an elbow into the back of one of the station marines. The marine spun around on his heels, clearly prepared to give a verbal and perhaps physical thrashing to whoever was brazen enough to knock into him. As the young lieutenant turned, he caught quick sight of Paran's captain insignia and immediately stood at attention, swallowing his anger with some difficulty.

"Beg your pardon, sir," he said with the practiced cadence of someone used to apologizing for the mistakes of others. Paran met the young lieutenant's eyes with a withering stare from his icy blue eyes. To his credit, the lieutenant did not look away, as many did reflexively upon locking eyes with Paran. Paran displayed no outward sign of his satisfaction with this, though his antennae did straighten slightly.

"As you were, marine," Paran said perfunctorily. With that, Paran turned and walked away. His rank, even reduced as it is, did have it's privileges. He was still getting used to his biosynthetic limbs, sometimes they weren't exactly where he felt them to be. All the doctors and medical engineers insisted that his limbs were functioning within operating parameters and none of their precious tests revealed anything wrong with them, but Paran knew better. He absent-mindedly rubbed the elbow of his new left arm, trying to get used to the sensation of it.

Though, for all the replacement parts currently in his body, Paran felt better than he had in a long time. He was heading back into space, in command of marines, no less. After what happened during the retaking of Betazed, he wasn't sure that he was ever going to command again. The court martial may have cleared him, but he was down to Captain now, and the thought galled him. Being in the damn coma hadn't helped either, though the doctors had assured him that it was all for the best. His injuries had been extensive and he was reliably informed that his injuries would have killed almost anyone else. Andorians are hardy people, all those pink skin doctors had been so amazed that I survived, he thought silently.

Now, his injuries healed, all he had to remind himself of what had occurred were his innumerable scars and the three X pattern of the 2nd Battalion 30th Marines tattooed on his right arm. He thought momentarily about whether Starfleet Marines would reconstitute the unit. They had been stricken from the active record after Second Betazed and now lived only in the history books and memories of the few marines left who had been a part. "Hail to the victorious 30th," he muttered under his breath and walked on to where Minoru was docked.

As he stepped through the airlock to Minoru, he presented his transfer orders to the Security officer on duty. "Excellent," the young woman said flatly as she examined the orders. "We have you quartered with the other marines. Do you need anyone to show you the way?"

"That won't be necessary. This isn't the first posting I've had on an Akira. I assume that we're quartered in the usual location?" He said, leveling his gaze at her. She was taller than he was, but she seemed to shrink as he silently appraised her. His dull blue eyes staring daggers through her.

"Yes, sir." She said, a small quaver in the pitch of her voice. Though no change in his expression was evident, Paran smiled internally. He wanted to make sure that he set the proper tone with his marines and this unlucky woman was his practice. It had been six years since Paran had been a commander, though he was only conscious for two of them. It's good to know I've still got it, he thought.

Without further words, Paran turned and walked to where he knew the marines to be quartered. He did not see anyone wearing the marine-standard gray uniforms on the way and he had no interest in talking with any of the others that he saw. He reached his quarters and stepped inside. They were larger than he was used to, one of the features of the Akira class. A trunk containing his few belongings had arrived ahead of him. He has shipped it from Andoria Prime a week before his arrival and he was glad that it had arrived.

He quickly unpacked his clothes and approached the mirror, taking off his shirt while doing so. Using the mirror, he examined the darker blue line that marked the fusion of his biosynthetic arm to his body. A sour expression came over his face. Starfleet, despite their best efforts, just couldn't get the right shade of blue for the arm. He extended and flexed the arm silently in the mirror, checking that the arm still functioned as expected. Satisfied that it was not malfunctioning, he took off his pants and performed the same check on his legs. Despite finding no problems with his artificial limbs, a sour expression came over his face and his antennae pulled close together. His doctors had told him that checks like this were unnecessary so long after the initial attachment, but the checks gave him confidence that the limbs were under his proper control.

He put on a fresh uniform and checked himself in the mirror. The deep-blue scars on his face had not shown any signs of fading over the last two years and, despite what the doctors on Andoria Prime had told him, he was beginning to doubt that they would. This didn't bother Paran. He wore his scars both as a reminder of what had come before and to remember those who were with him when he got them. Satisfied that he was ready for inspection, he walked to the door. "I suppose I should go report to the Captain." He said to the walls, as he opened the door and walked out into the hall.

_________________
Captain Paran th'Daras
Federation Marines
CO of Marine Detachment to USS Minoru


Last edited by Paran th'Daras on Wed Sep 01, 2010 11:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Sat Aug 28, 2010 10:28 pm
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Post Re: Mission 0: All Aboard
[Ship's Counselor's Office, 1700h, MD-2]

Minerva leaned back in her desk chair and stretched. She'd spent the last two hours sorting and prioritizing crew profiles, and was finally starting to feel like she knew what she'd need to get done the next day. With over five hundred people onboard, and a heading towards a border area, introductory interviews with each individual crewmember were simply out of the question.

Though considering the captain, and the reaction of a few others she'd introduced herself to since coming onboard, perhaps that was a good thing. There were some people who would be more comfortable meeting her *after* she'd established a reputation with the crew at large.

Still, she had plenty of interviews to organize. There were three crewmembers who were to see her regularly by mandate of their previous CO's, four more who had sent her a memo asking to continue what they'd been working on with their previous counselors, and another eleven who had sent her much vaguer messages, which might result in any number of things. In addition, as the ship's crew was nearly 95% human, she intended to try to at least touch base with each non-human onboard sometime in the next week. (Not to mention the Security crewman apprentice who had a phobia of arachnids so severe that it was listed in his permanent record. Probably he would need some help in working with the Captain's Yeoman.)

The ship didn't have too many civilian passengers, and while a fairly decent percentage of those were children of crewmembers, she was fairly certain she'd be able to touch base with each parent onboard in the next week or so. Family life onboard a starship was often difficult, and complicated by the crew's long hours. She may well get some family counseling experience on this journey.

Minerva glanced around her office. She'd been pleasantly surprised by the room- it was far more comfortable than the "Broom Closet", as she'd nicknamed it, that she'd worked in at the Academy. Her desk faced the room, with the terminal screen, of course, facing the wall for privacy. Two chairs for visitors sat on the other side of the desk, and just past that was a chair and loveseat set, both very comfortable and with a low table, facing the viewport that took up most of the outside wall.

The room itself was rather spartan- she had a small holo that rotated images of family and friends on her desk, but aside from that the room was bare. Like her quarters, she intended to decorate her office with things she picked up along the journey. But this room would likely remain much as it was- sessions could get intense, and while it hadn't happened often she'd had patients throw whatever came to hand, or even try to attack her, before. A projectile-free workplace was worth the plain atmosphere.

Wincing at one particular memory of a large geode missing her head by a handful of millimeters, Minerva closed down her terminal. It would probably be at least a week before she was able to get a sense of what her office hours would need to be- probably she'd have to work some kind of split shift on a regular basis, in order to have consistent access to the whole crew. Not to mention any bridge duties the Captain might see fit to throw her way. Any long-term counseling would have to take place right alongside any missions and exploration the ship set out on.

Grabbing her ever-present favorite PADD, she set off to the mess hall. She could use a cup of coffee and a little ordinary conversation.

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Lieutenant Minerva Conway
Chief Counselor, USS Minoru


Sun Aug 29, 2010 5:39 pm
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Post Re: Mission 0: All Aboard
[Main Engineering (Lower), MD-2, 0951]

Ensign Morak'Tal passively observed Main Engineering; the constant buzz of activity had dwindled rather considerably, especially after the initial inspection conducted by the Commanding Officer and Chief Operations Officer. Upon their departure to continue the tour, Lieutenant Ameen had dismissed all personnel but that of a skeleton crew to enjoy a bit of rest and relaxation prior to the Minoru's disembarking. The vast majority of the Minoru's Engineering Team had been steadfast and worked tirelessly to ensure the ship was more than ready and capable of leaving on time, if not ahead of schedule. Morak'Tal could appreciate this kind gesture to a certain extent, having preferred a few extra hours of sleep if at all possible; however, the original plan was to leave when the Chief did and that had yet to happen. Still glued to the console, deep in thought, Chief Ameen appeared to be content to continue working on whatever project he was attempting to complete. Perhaps he needed assistance, taking a step towards the Chief's location, something unusual caught the periphery of the Klingon's line of sight.

James (PNPC) knew that he probably wasn't going to hear anything back about his study proposal right away, which was to be expected. Everyone else was so busy trying to get the Minoru ready for her launch that it seemed better for him to just take a step back and wait for things to settle down. His father was probably still in a meeting with the captain, which meant that James pretty much had the morning to himself. Being that he was mostly unpacked already, James had decided to take a break from unpacking and to try and familiarize himself with the Minoru. Reading about the ship and memorizing specifications was one thing, walking the corridors and actually seeing the different locations in person was totally different.

His wanderings had taken him down several corridors along the way until he'd managed to find himself outside main engineering. James knew that main engineering was one of the more vital areas of a starship, which meant that it would normally have tighter security than, say, the holodeck or the ship's lounge. Still, he didn't think it would hurt to have just a small peek inside. It didn't look like there were that many people around and he'd probably be able to get in and out without getting in anyone's way.

The doors parted and the first thing he noticed was how similar the room seemed to main engineering aboard the Houston. In fact, if he hadn't known any better, he might have sworn that he was back aboard the Houston again. No one seemed to have noticed him yet, which was probably just as well. Slowly, he stepped across the threshold of the doorway and began to look around, taking it all in.

"You, child!" The deep, heavy tenor of Morak'Tal's voice filled the entirety of the anti-chamber to Main Engineering. His behemoth size did little work of traversing the short distance between Klingon and Human. "You're not authorized to be here." The Klingon snarled protectively, the tone in his voice evidence that he would do what might be necessary to ensure that Main Engineering remained secured at all times. "Leave at once!" He commanded with unmistakable authority, and a soft hint of malice.

The sudden rebuke startled James and he looked over toward the foreboding Klingon that was making way towards him. "Ss-sorry, sir," James replied, wishing that he'd have a little more confidence in his voice, "I didn't mean to..."

Arunjezeb had been startled by Morak'Tal, jumping slightly in the chair as his head snapped in the direction of the overbearingly loud Klingon. Hazel-colored eyes carefully assessed the developing situation; if the Lieutenant didn't know any better, he feared Morak'Tal would very well lift the young man up by the shirt collar and toss the boy out of Main Engineering and onto is rear. His eyes flickering between Starfleet Officer and civilian, Arunjezeb came to the conclusion that perhaps an intervention would be the most appropriate action at this time.

"Chi-" Morak'Tal had started to respond, yet was compelled into silence at the mere appearance of Arunjezeb. For the briefest of moment's, a visible confusion had befallen the Klingon's previously hardened expression, almost as if the mere appearance of Arunjezeb was, in-of-itself, a tremendous surprise. The Lieutenant gently placed a hand on the towering Klingon's forearm, a gesture meant to indicate that the Ensign should relent and assume a more calm and collected posture. There was not a single word exchanged between the two Officer's, yet their mutual body language reflected the spoken word need not be uttered. His eyes locked with Morak'Tal's for half a second before a nod from the Ensign indicated he understood.

Turning on a heal, the Klingon disappeared into the aft recesses of Main Engineering. "I apologize for Ensign Morak'Tal's behavior; he's rather sensitive and overly territorial regarding who is allowed in Main Engineering." Arunjezeb offered, his eyes closely scrutinizing the young man. Rather handsome, the boy must have been no more than fifteen or sixteen years of age; the color of his hair and certain characteristics of his bone structure were oddly familiar, yet Arunjezeb couldn't quite tell from whom quite yet. "I'm Chief Ameen, Ships Engineer ... and you might be?" He inquired, offering his right hand as it extended forward.

"James... Anderson," James replied, extending his hand to shake the engineer's, though his eyes continued to follow the Klingon.

Arunjezeb considered the young man's response for a very long moment, "Anderson, as in Lieutenant Commander Anderson's son?" He inquired sharply, although his tone remained polite and cordial.

"Yes, sir," James replied, hoping that it wasn't going to get him into even more trouble than he already was.

Arunjezeb adorned a kind smile, sensing that James was still quite uncomfortable with the exchange that had just occurred between himself and the Klingon Ensign. Wanting to put the boy at ease, he replied in a steady, even tone, "Well, it's a pleasure to meet you, Mr. Anderson. I've not yet had the chance to meet your father, but I've heard very positive things." He concluded with a smile. "So, what brings you to Main Engineering?" He inquired inquisitively.

The man's kinder demeanor allowed James to relax a little after his encounter with the burly Klingon. He knew that he probably wasn't supposed to be in engineering, but sometimes, the lure of curiosity was too strong to resist. "I'm sorry, sir," James said, "I shouldn't be in here..."

He chuckled lightheartedly, "'supposed to be here' and actually being here are two very different things now, aren't they?" He asked rhetorically. "I don't suppose you might be interested in a tour, would you?" The question was passive.

A little surprised in how different this man's reaction was when compared to the one that he had first received upon entering the room, James wasn't quite sure what to say to the question. He'd have loved to be able to see the Minoru's engineering section for himself, but part of him felt that it would have been better if he had gotten permission first before he'd just walked in. Finally, his curiosity got the better of him and he smiled. "That would be great," James replied.

Arunjezeb clapped both of his hands together stiffly, rubbing them against one another to create a bit of warmth through the friction. "Excellent! Well then, why don't we start right at the heart of the matter ... the warp core." The Lieutenant gestured towards the center piece of the entirety of Main Engineering. The rotund, cylindrical object extended from the very heart of the compartment and reached vertically in either direction for as far as the eye could actually see. As the pair moved slowly towards the dormant core, Arunjezeb posed a question. "Tell me, what do you know about starship engineering and how it directly relates to the continued operations and functioning of the craft?"

"Uhh...come again," James asked, his attention mostly taken by the Minoru's warp core. He put his hands on the low railing that circled the core and glanced upward toward where the cylinder disappeared into the ceiling of the open engineering deck above.

Arunjezeb cast an apologetic expression towards the youngster, "sorry, I was curious if you knew what engineering actually does." He simplified, probing.

"Oh, yeah," James said with a somewhat dismissive laugh, "You guys give the ship its power and you make sure she doesn't fly apart." It was a rather oversimplified description of what engineers did aboard ship, but James didn't think he needed to go into too much detail. Most of what he knew pertained to how engineering related to flight control, especially on the smaller auxiliary craft.

"Quite right, to a certain degree." Arunjezeb nodded as he gripped the metal curve of the guard rail encircling the warpcore. "A simplified explanation at its best, but quite right none-the-less. Tell me, if I remember correctly, your father is a highly experienced and decorated pilot ... has any of that passion rubbed off on you?" He inquired.

James opened his mouth to reply, then paused. His father's experience as a pilot was one of the major reasons he had first started to look at piloting as a career possibility, but it wasn't necessarily the only reason. "I don't know if I would necessarily say that it 'rubbed off'," James said slowly.

Arunjezeb cocked his head to the side, intrigued by the boys answer. "But there's an interest, none-the-less ..." the Lieutenant concluded, ascertaining that the lack of true answer was an actual affirmation.

"Yes, sir," James replied.

Smiling, the Lieutenant was about to respond when an engineering technician approached, "Sir, I could really use your help with the primary EPS manifold; they're are irregular temperature spikes." She reported plainly, yet with hints of frustration. He nodded in response, turning back to the younger Anderson.

"Well, duty calls. Please have yourself a look around, but try to stay out from under foot and avoid the Klingon at all costs." He said, gently patting the boy on the shoulder before turning on his heal to leave. Had they been out of station keeping, he'd have saw the boy out of Main Engineering; however, without an active warp core and redundant safeties and lockouts on the all console stations, he was worried little that the boy would get himself into any mischief.

Watching the Chief Engineer walk away with the technician, James turned to look up at the warp core again. The fact that the impromptu tour had been cut short didn't really disappoint him all that much, given that he'd never really anticipated getting such a tour in the first place. Out of the corner of his eye, he could see the Klingon watching him closely from the far side of the bay. He decided that it might be better to come back again later.

James turned away from the dormant warp core and walked down the length of the bay toward the double doors that would lead him back out into the ship's corridor. Maybe he'd be able to convince his father to give him a quick flight lesson on the holodeck that afternoon.

(Reply: Any)

A joint post featuring ...

James Anderson (PNPC)
Civilian - Executive Officer's Son
USS Minoru
Played by: LtCmdr Anderson

and

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Arunjezeb Ameen
Chief Engineering Officer, Starfleet's Corps. of Engineers (SCE)
USS Minoru, NCC-64306

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David Richards
Instructor, Starfleet Academy

Starfleet's 8th Fleet, codenamed Horizon Fleet


Sun Aug 29, 2010 7:07 pm
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Post Re: Mission 0: All Aboard
ON: [Ready Room, MD-3, 1300]

While Ash had received a long indoctrination over his career regarding the nigh-superhuman qualities of a starship captain, thus far he'd found that he was still rather mortal. That included the need for such trivialities as food and rest, no matter how much he needed to get done in the pre-launch rush. He did his best to keep going, but it wasn't long after noon that the grumbling in his stomach started to be too great to ignore. Ash could have remained in his ready room for lunch, but he decided to head for the mess instead. His brain needed some time away from paperwork and readiness reports, after all. He figured he could get some light reading in - say, the latest issue of Warp Dynamics Quarterly or Ships of the Starfleet.

Of course, he didn't even manage to get out of the room before that plan was derailed. When Ash opened his door he found an Andorian on the other side, his own hand halfway to the door chime.

As the door slid open unbidden, Paran immediately snapped to attention, giving his new captain a crisp salute.

"Captain Paran th'Daras, Federation Marines, reporting as ordered, sir." Though Paran remained at attention, he took the opportunity to silently appraise his new captain. The redness in Captain Griffith's eyes spoke to a long day pouring over a PADD and the audible rumble of his stomach spoke to a hunger deferred as long as possible. He works long hours, Paran thought, a good sign, he cares about the mission and wants to be ready. And, despite the fatigue, a PADD still in hand. Impressive.

His quick appraisal finished, Paran matched his captain's look with a respectful salute, his antennae involuntarily straightening upwards. When we're on patrol, we'll see what measure of pinkskin he is., Paran mused to himself.

"At ease, Captain, and welcome aboard," Ash said, returning the salute. He wasn't terribly surprised that the Marines had retained that sort of crisp tradition in an age that had largely abandoned such formalities; even during his more militaristic time they'd always been considered a bit... odd. He stepped back and waved th'Daras inside. Lunch would have to wait, it appeared. "I see the tendency of Marines to arrive unexpectedly hasn't diminished over the years."

"As one of my old commanders used to say, 'a marine arrives exactly when needed'" Paran marked offhandedly as he moved into the room. Though he would never show his appreciation outwardly, he certainly admired the kzinti dagger, it showed excellent workmanship. Paran debated asking about the mangled piece of hull plating, but eventually decided against it. Like the broken and charred Jem'hadar Rifle mounted on a stand in his quarters, he assumed that the story behind this particular memento was too personal to ask on a first meeting.

"I believe that I am here to save you from the chicken in the mess hall. I'm not sure what the cooks did to it, but I believe that most sentient species consider that to be some variety of chemical weapon. In any case, I have no desire to keep a hungry captain from his meal. May I walk with you to the mess hall? I have Holodeck 1 booked in a little while and it's on the way.

Ash nodded and lead the way out into the corridor and toward the turbolift. "I've been trying to regularly eat what they prepare to keep up appearances, but I'll take your advice and stick to the replicators today. I heard enough stories from my grandmother and have enough personal experience with field rations to know that if a marine won't eat something it has to be well past inedible and on to outright deadly."

Paran laughed loudly at this, his antennae moving in slow circles as he leaned his head back. The corridor seemed to almost shake with the force of his laughter. Years of utilizing high volume to instill discipline in his subordinates gave Paran's voice exceptional power. He resisted the urge to give Ash a brotherly slap on the back for the joke. The Captain's not a marine, don't presume to treat him like one, Paran thought harshly. Instead, he followed his Captain's lead and walked crisply behind him to the turbolift.

"Deck 5," Paran said, immediately upon entering. The doors of the turbolift slid closed almost soundlessly and as soon as the doors had closed, he turned to his Captain, fully intending to take advantage of the few seconds of relative privacy they would have away from eaves-droppers.

"Captain," Paran began, his tone becoming infinitely more serious. "I want to let you know that, no matter what we encounter out there, you can rely on both myself and my marines." For a brief moment, the image of a Jem'hadar soldier charging him flashed through his mind's eye. Second Betazed. Paran suppressed a shudder as he willed himself back to reality. "We will not let you down." He leveled his gaze at Ash, his face conveying the grim determination that, no matter what, he would see to the safety of the crew.

"I have complete confidence that's the case," Ash replied, equally serious. "I've worked closely with marines before, and while that particular situation was rather unpleasant, I was never less than impressed by their abilities. I'm sure that hasn't changed in the slightest in the intervening time." He neglected to add that some part of his brain still associated MACOs and their marine successors with freshly baked cookies and bedtime stories; it was a bit beside the point at the moment.

At this, the turbolift door slid open behind Paran. They both stepped from the turbolift and, knowing that they were going in opposite directions from here, Paran turned to Ash, straightened and gave his commander a respectful salute. "I appreciate you taking the time to talk with me, sir."

"My door's open any time. Have a good day." With that, Ash headed off toward the mess in search of something non-chicken to eat.

Paran remained at attention for a second longer, until the captain's attention was turned away. His antennae straightened and a slight smile crossed his lips. He'll be a good captain, for a pink skin anyways, Paran thought as he walked to Holodeck 1.

----------

[Off] - A JP with:
Lt Commander Ashton Griffith
Commanding Officer, USS Minoru

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Captain Paran th'Daras
Federation Marines
CO of Marine Detachment to USS Minoru


Fri Sep 03, 2010 9:36 pm
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Post Re: Mission 0: All Aboard
ON:[[Albus City, Nova Mexico, Magna Roma; MD-8; 0310]]

Gaius Plinius Caepio slammed shut the door of his father's house as he entered, causing some of the ornate vases and statues in the atrium to shake. Antonia (NPC), who had gone in already, started at the noise and turned around to face her husband.

"That was uncalled for," she glared and swiftly left for one of the side rooms.

"I'm sorry," Gaius replied, already feeling shame for his outburst. He removed his cloak quietly and waited for a servant to take it from him. His face was still contorted, however. His mother (NPC), who had come home an hour before, emerged from another side room.

"You've had this bottled up long enough, Gaius. You'd better get it out," Sentia said, "But let's go back to the garden."

He assented and led the way around his father's open study, through the hall, and into the cloister surrounding the garden. Sentia settled into a chair and looked up at him expectantly.

"Jupiter, Mars, and Venus! What does she think she's doing?" he demanded, failing to keep his passion in check, "It wasn't enough to say those spineless heathens could do what they wished, she had to join them and then marry one! And they couldn't keep their barbarian rituals to themselves. They had to insist that she get married without the abduction! He didn't even carry her over the threshold! And to have the gall to say we couldn't make sacrifices to Ceres or ask for auspices from Jupiter! How could Plinia (NPC) do this to us?"

"You know the Childern of the Son aren't evil, Gaius. Your father has spoken for their rights many times in the Senate."

"No, they're not evil. Worms aren't evil. A frightened rabbit is not my enemy. They can do whatever they like on their own, but my sister is supposed to be a Roman! She knew that once. What happened while I was away at Starfleet?"

"Many things have happened, Gaius. But your sister started changing while you were still here at the University. You were just too busy to notice it."

Gaius turned away from his mother and looked up above the enclosed garden into the night sky. The stars were almost completely obscured by the city lights, but he saw the trail of a shuttle as it made its re-entry. One more day, he thought, Then I can go back. I thought a month would not be long enough.

[[Albus City, Nova Mexico, Magna Roma; MD-7; 0810]]

The morning sun blazed through the shuttlecraft windows, blocking Gaius' view of the boarding platform and his mother. It had been good of her to come, even though the servant could have delivered him to the spaceport alone. He had enjoyed spending the previous day in the forum with his old Army comrades, but it would be good to be aboard a starship again. He was in his uniform already, and he thought excitedly about the possibilites. An Akira class! Not as many labs as the Gabriel Bell, but better able to defend herself. And a new crew, although he had heard one of his fellow science officers had also gotten a transfer to the Minoru.

As the shuttle accelerated away from the city, he turned away from the starboard window and leaned over so he could see past the pilot, through the fore window, and waited for the air to clear so he could see the stars again.

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Lieutenant Gaius Plinius Caepio
Chief Science Officer
U.S.S. Minoru


Thu Dec 02, 2010 9:41 pm
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Post Re: Mission 0: All Aboard
ON: [[Antares Shipyard, MD -1, 1040]]

Lieutenant Caepio looked up from his PADD, startled. Yes, that had been the final boarding call for his shuttle to the Minoru. He quickly glanced at his display of Variable State Nanophysics to remember where he had left off and stowed the PADD in his pack. Walking quickly from the waiting area to the shuttlebay, he forced himself to keep his mind on what he had been reading. It had been difficult to keep his mind off his sister's wedding in the days since, especially the extra day he had to wait at Starbase 87 for the U.S.S. Saratoga to bring him to Antares.

" Satsuma --hmm, sounds Oriental, if I'm not getting my planets confused?" Caepio said as he approached the shuttle.

The Ensign (NPC) checking in passengers looked up quizzically. "It's Japanese, if that's what you mean, sir. All the craft associated with the Minoru have names tied to the ship's name's meaning in Terran Japanese."

"Oh, right, of course," he replied, looking away while she finished checking his ID. He found a seat and grabbed his PADD again. Must stay focused, he thought, but it was hard even to think about his new posting. The other people boarding the shuttle were mostly security crewmen, and none of them were female, so he felt no need to introduce himself right away. He buried himself in his journal again and didn't look up until the ship came into view.

It was almost the way he imagined it from the specs--not much bigger but certainly sleeker than the Gabriel Bell . He had already listed a dozen experiments that he wanted to get started in the labs. There were some things in Professor Renak's (NPC) new paper that just didn't quite make sense. But he also was glad to be on a ship that was built for battle. If the Romulans or anyone else tried making a move, he wanted to be on a ship that was ready.

[[USS Minoru, Shuttlebay, Crew Quarters, 1107]]

He moved through the boarding procedures with the necessary formality and had a crewman escort him to his quarters. He dropped his bag, saw that his other belongings had been delivered, and took a look around. Good, he thought, a little more space than my old quarters and just as comfortable. Immediately, he touched his combadge.

=^=Lieutenant Caepio to Captain Griffith.=^=

A few moments later a reply came. =^= This is Griffith. Go ahead, Lieutenant. =^=

=^=I've just arrived, sir, and I wanted to make sure you were available before I disturbed you in your ready room. Do you have a few minutes?=^=

=^= That won't be a problem, unless you're using a non-standard definition of minute. I'll be waiting for you. Griffith out. =^=

Caepio ran his hand quickly over his dark hair and grabbed his PADD again. As he left his quarters and strode down the hall towards the turbolift, he opened the file of notes he had made about his priorities as a new Chief Science Officer.

"Bridge," he remarked as he entered the lift. He hummed an old army tune as he waited for it to deliver him. Magna Roman ships only had lifts on the largest ships, of which there were few, and Caepio always preferred to take halls, stairs, and even ladders if he wasn't in a rush. But he didn't know this ship's layout yet, and he was already a day later than expected, so he didn't want to wait even a few more seconds if he didn't have to.

As he entered the bridge, he did spare a quick glance at his new science station and contained a grin. He nodded to the officer at the conn, who must have been the second officer. First he needed to meet the captain. He chimed the ready room door.

[[USS Minoru, Captain's Ready Room, 1114]]

"Enter!" Griffith called, standing up behind his desk.

Caepio entered and immediately faced the captain. He resisted the urge to snap to a Roman salute and proffered the Starfleet one instead. His recent time at home was bringing more than one old habit to the surface. With a glance, he surveyed his new commanding officer--he knew Griffith was the same age as he was, but he had served on a Starfleet ship longer and had a glorious service record, so he felt no apprehension at this fact. He also noticed the large knife and the twisted piece of hull plating hanging on the walls, and silently approved.

"At ease, Lieutenant, and welcome aboard," Ash said, returning the salute. He waved at a chair on the opposite side of the desk. "Take a seat. I glanced over your service record while I was waiting - your last assignment was a science ship, the Gabriel Bell. Find anything interesting out there?"

Caepio felt his shoulders relax as he shifted to an at ease position, then his eyes widened as he thought of his experiences over the last few years. He sat as he began speaking.

"Well, yes and no, sir. The stars and star systems are farther apart the further you are from the core, of course, so we had a lot of travel time, and that could get old. But what we did find was amazing! We found fewer and fewer humanoids as we got closer to the Galactic Barrier. Our science staff speculated that both the original Humanoids and the Preservers did not spread their influence in that area. There were several non-carbon-based lifeforms, including a race similar to the Horta that appears to have approximately apelike intelligence. Not to mention several confirmed black holes and dwarf stars. In fact, there was a binary system in sector 3902 that included a red dwarf, a singularity, and three planets, including one which supported rudimentary life! Commander Zephon (NPC) believed that.... But I suppose that's more than you needed to know, sir."

"Just a little, but I'm glad that you're enthusiastic about your work," Ash said with a smile. "I'm afraid our resources are a little more limited in terms of space and staff than what you're used to, but I'm confident that you can maintain a high level of research." He certainly hoped so, given what people had accomplished with much smaller and less capable ships like the ancient Oberth- and Constitution-classes. "Is there any particular field that you specialize in?"

"Particle physics and astrophysics are my specialties, sir, but I've dealt with almost everything else, in an advisory capacity, if nothing else: xenobiology, chemistry, geology. Commander Zephon basically had me acting as his 'XO' while I was his Assistant Chief Science Officer. He was often needed on the bridge, so I acted as the direct manager of the ship's science crew."

"That's what I was hoping to hear. Our patrol area includes the Typhon Expanse, which as you might be aware experiences a high number of spatial anomalies. Quite a few starships have been lost..." Ash paused momentarily to carefully choose his words, "displaced, or otherwise endangered in the Expanse. I'd like for your department to put an emphasis on studying that sort of phenomena, with a particular eye towards predicting their occurrence or otherwise detecting them before they can affect the ship."

"Hmm..." Caepio paused, his eyes now focused on something behind the hull plating. "Let's see... there's usually an increase in meson and neutrino levels, among other things. Yes, I think it would be possible to use the data we have to program some sort of early-warning system. Starfleet's certainly had enough experience with this sort of thing. I'll have my team begin work on it as soon as we get organized. Whom should I speak to about any necessary modifications to the sensor array?"

"Coordinate with Lieutenant Commander Niveda in the Ops department," Ash said. "If you detect anything of interest - on this or any other subject - feel free to let me know so that we can adjust our course. Our patrol schedule isn't so regimented that we can't fit in time now and then to investigate interesting phenomena."

"Of course, sir. I would be happy to investigate anything out-of-the-ordinary, assuming our mission allows us time. Are there any other projects or objectives that you want me and my department to focus on to start with?"

"No, outside of any mission requirements I'll be leaving that sort of decision up to you. As long as you're productive and don't squabble too much amongst yourselves or with other departments, you have a free hand."

"Excellent. I'll certainly do my best to maintain order within my department. If that's all you have for me...? I just have one more query. If I am to be a part of away missions that may involve personal defense, I would like to request permission to use an alternate sidearm."

Ash frowned, as the question wasn't one he had expected. "What are you wanting to carry instead?"

"I realize it's not strictly regulation, sir, since the incident with the Centurion, but I am quite skilled in using a gladius for both lethal and non-lethal defense, and cultural exceptions to the dress code have been made in the past. My previous captain permitted me to bring it on certain missions, along with a Type-I phaser, but I fully respect that this is your decision. If you decide now that it would not be appropriate, I will not ask again." Caepio was now quite focused, sitting more stiffly in his chair than before.

It was an unusual request. While Caepio wasn't the only person who carried a knife in the field - Ash had taken to carrying a rather heftier than regulation utility blade himself and he knew some Dominion War veterans who did the same - usually it was a little more circumspect than a sword. His first instinct was to check the computer to see what the precedence was for Sikhs or certain Andorian sects, but this wasn't a religious variance and Caepio had probably researched the matter himself. No doubt he had any necessary close combat certifications as well.

"I'm reluctant to say yes. A blade tends to have a rather different psychological impact on people than an energy weapon, even if rationally it's less dangerous. Still, if you haven't had problems yet, I'll allow it on a provisional basis. I'll trust you to use your judgment about when you carry it and to defer to the officer if they feel it's inappropriate."

"Understood, sir, and thank you. I will certainly use discretion and check with the leader of any away missions I am a part of before bringing it." Caepio relaxed his posture once again. "Permission to assume my station, Captain?"

Ash nodded. "By all means. Dismissed."

Caepio stood and saluted again. “Good day, Captain,” he said curtly, but his eyes were alight again. The sooner he got himself and his department set up, the sooner he could get to work on detecting spatial anomalies.

OFF: a JP with
Commander Ashton Griffith
Commanding Officer, USS Minoru

_________________
Lieutenant Gaius Plinius Caepio
Chief Science Officer
U.S.S. Minoru


Mon Dec 06, 2010 5:15 pm
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