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Old October 14 2013, 07:20 PM   #2
Rear Admiral
Re: UT-TFV: "No Win Scenario"

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Main Engineering
USS Empress

Captain Tan Erasia felt the weight of history on her shoulders as she crossed the threshold. Before her dominated the towering warp core, which beat like a great heart. Serious-faced engineers scurried about, many of their noses or breathing organs pressed against personal display devices. Others were hunched over table-like master displays.

The normal cacophony of life had been replaced by the buzz of war. Tan had witnessed it in every department as she toured the ship. She felt both heartened and horrified at how easily her crew seemed to adapt to a wartime footing. Many had been baptized in blood courtesy of the Dominion War. Some lucky enough to escape that hecatomb had been blooded by the postwar occupation or the Talarian Incursion.

The Efrosian had hoped that the Vanguard mission would be getting Starfleet back to exploring and not making more war preparations. “I know that look,” Chief Engineer Thav said, breaking free from the throng. The stout Andorian gave her a wry grin. “How about you come to my office?”
Chief Engineer's Office
USS Empress

Erasia’s tension started to ease only after the second glass of sky blue Andorian ale. Thav always had the best Andorian spirits, even putting the recreation lounge to shame. Thav sat back in his chair after taking his own second bracing shot. “I’m no doctor, like yourself, but it seems like my liquid prescription is doing the trick.”

Tan smiled as she also sat back. “Right as always Thav. You know me too well.” Erasia had served with the hale Andorian for years aboard the Gral. The man had been pondering retirement, to return to his bond group on Andor before Tan had convinced him to join her aboard the Empress. The biggest enticement was that the Galaxy-class ship also carried families and Thav could bring his entire bond group with him.

A benefit to Tan was that she not only got a good friend serving alongside her, but a talented operations officer in Lt. Aarti, a member of his bond group who had already transferred back to Andor in anticipation of Thav’s return. However he had convinced Aarti and the rest of the bond group to join him on Empress. The other two members of the group served in civilian posts aboard the ship.

“I guess I should let you get back to your inspection,” Thav said after a few moments of pleasant silence. “It’s not as if my team doesn’t have enough stress,” he half-joked.

Tan chuckled. “I know,” she conceded, “but this is not a formal inspection. If anything, I’m just walking the ship one last time, right before a fateful battle. I heard that Picard did that…shortly before the first Borg invasion of Sector 001.”

“Ah yes, I remember he was mimicking an Ancient Earth captain…Horatio Nelson, if I recall correctly,” Thav gave a tight-lipped smile. The Andorian’s love of ancient Andorian ice cutters expanded into old sailing vessels from many cultures. His personal quarters were filled with models of several such vessels. “The HMS Victory was his vessel,” he said. “A ghastly tradition,” he added.

“Excuse me?” Tan cocked an eyebrow.

“You know that Nelson didn’t survive that battle, and Picard nearly didn’t either,” Thav answered. “You should’ve picked another tradition.”

The Efrosian sighed. Thav was the one person aboard that she felt she could be the most honest with. They had saved each other and seen each other at their worsts more times than she could count. So she didn’t hide her true thoughts like she would around another member of the crew, including her first officer.

Recalling the damage inflicted on the K’mpec and Tanaka’s account of the attack cruiser that he had barely survived, Tan regarded her old friend with a sober expression, the ale’s effects drained from her. “No, in light of what we are rushing towards, I think the tradition is most appropriate.”
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Last edited by DarKush; October 15 2013 at 02:19 AM.
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