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Old November 6 2012, 05:49 PM   #1
Bry_Sinclair
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Location: Along the border of Talarian space
Wilderness - A Little Taster

With HD-TNG now on the go, all the crisp, sharp screencaps got me thinking about that time in Trek and how things would be very different from the post-Dominion War time period I usually write in, so I set about devising a new ship and crew to experiment with.

So I'd like to present a little taster of:
Star Trek: Wilderness

The main series starts in 2358, six years before the Enterprise-D was launched, set onboard the Cheyenne-Class U.S.S. Juno on a deep space scouting mission, blazing a trail in a new frontier for other ships to follow.

Enjoy.

Brydon

* * * * *

Cockpit, U.S.S. Kilimanjaro
On approach to Space Station K-12
Stardate: 34993.8 (December 29th, 2357)

Linna Rhyth watched the station loomed up on the Himalaya-Class runabout. The old base was the last of the K-Series still in service, though it was a shadow of its former glory. Once centres of commerce and diplomacy, they had become little more than way stations for drifters and transients. K-12 was kept operational as a base because there was little point in replacing it with something newer, so it had long since become a dumping ground for personnel who weren’t wanted anywhere else.

Oh Saul, she lamented, her heart aching. She couldn’t believe that he had wound up on such a dead end outpost. Were things really that bad after Derakas? she asked the universe. One incident, one moment of apprehension had led to this. A cold shiver ran down her spin.

The companel flashed. “Runabout Kilimanjaro, you are cleared for docking at hangar three, pad D.”

“Acknowledged,” she replied promptly and cut the channel. She tapped in a control sequence and headed for the hangar. The station design always reminded her of a castle, with the large central core surrounded by three turrets, surrounded by moat of still darkness. It was a bleak and depressing scene, the hull of the base was a patchwork of metal panels, sensor palettes, deflector screen grids and other technology—the newest of which was at least thirty years old.

I promise you, Saul, I will get you out of here.

* * * * *

Docking Control, Space Station K-12

As bad as the exterior had been, inside the old base things were worse. The haphazard refits and repairs were more obvious, rounding a corner would lead her into an old section of corridor probably not touched since the base was commissioned, then a T-junction later she would be in a segment that had been upgraded three decades ago during the last overhaul.

For a base that had once had a standard complement of around six hundred, there was just over a third of that currently stationed on K-12. So the corridors were lightly populated, even those that passed through the base made little use of its recreational facilities or shops, so the commercial zone was little more than a ghost town. Her unexpected arrival had obviously gotten people talking—if the overly inquisitive shuttlebay techs were anything to go by—but she hadn’t told them anything but the bare minimum and left them guessing.

She entered Docking Control to find the facility manned by only two people, a skittish young human ensign and a lethargic Bolian petty officer. The officer was on his feet in a second after seeing her rank pips and scurried over to greet her.

“Yes sir. Can I help you, sir?”

She recognised the slightly squeaky voice from the comlink. “I’m looking for your supervisor.”

The colour drained from his face and sweat beaded on his forehead. “I’m sorry,” he replied instantly, head down and obviously thinking he’d done something wrong.

“He’s in his office,” the Bolian called, not looking up from his monitor—she could help but wonder what was so interesting that kept his transfixed on the display.

Not saying another word she headed for the only other door into the room and pressed the enunciator. A male voice called for her to enter and she stepped inside.

The office was cramped and bleak, dull grey walls that could sap any happy thoughts or upbeat feelings out of you, whilst the furniture was obviously well used and handed down from other locations across the station. There was nothing personal in the room, no mementoes of better times.

“Clarke, what is it n—Linna? What are you doing here?” Saul Keller asked, obviously dumbfounded.

She smiled at her old friend, amused by his shock. She planted her hands on her hips and looked him straight in the eye. “I think you know why I’m here, Saul.”

His brow furled tightly as the muscles in his jaw clenched. “Linna, I’ve told you I can’t—”

“Why?” she demanded. “You’re better than this, Saul! You would’ve been better off retiring rather than being assigned here. This dump is a waste of your talents.”

“Obviously Starfleet doesn’t think so. It was either take this position or remain a Lieutenant for the rest of my career—”

“A career that should have been something truly great!”

“I screwed up, alright! I made a huge mistake and now I have to live with the consequences, there’s nothing to be done about it.”

“You could let a friend help you out.”

“Linna, I can’t,” he said, shaking his head.

“Dammit Saul! Give me one good, solid, logical reason why you can’t be my First Officer, and then I’ll leave you alone,” she demanded, feeling more worked up face to face than any of the times they’d talked over subspace. Ever since she’d been assigned the Juno she’d been after Saul for her First Officer, wanting someone she knew to bounce ideas off of, who wouldn’t be afraid to argue his point and stand his ground, but also willing and able to follow whatever order she gave. That person was Saul Keller, only he didn’t see it that way.

There was a moment of terse silence in the cramped office, neither willing to back down. Finally, he broke the deadlock and looked away, sighing heavily. When he spoke again, his voice was soft, sounding almost defeated.

“I can’t come to the Juno because it’ll screw up your career,” he admitted.

She scowled slightly at him then moved closer to the desk. “What do you mean?”

“This is a high profile mission, blazing a trail into the unknown, making history with every light-year, meeting new races never known of before, discovering new phenomena and worlds—the kind of assignment we joined Starfleet for. There’s no way HQ will let it be tarnished by having me there, sullying the mission and you.

“You’d be better off finding someone else.”

“Saul, I don’t want someone else. My shortlist of candidates has only one name on it, and with two weeks to go before we launch, there isn’t a lot of time to find someone else. Besides, the Juno should have been your ship,” she told her former classmate. “This is the kind of mission you need to help you get back on track, to silence all the doubters, to prove that you have more than what it takes.

“And frankly, I don’t give a damn what some stuffed shirt Admiral says. You are the man I want in the post and I will fight tooth and nail to get you where you belong.”

He let out a single chuckle. “Do you just want to throw the cat among the pigeons?”

“Captain’s prerogative,” she told him with a smile. “So what do you say?”

A small grin tugged at the corner of his lips. “How could I argue with a ‘captain’s prerogative’?”

* * * * *

END
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Last edited by Bry_Sinclair; November 6 2012 at 10:52 PM.
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Old November 6 2012, 10:24 PM   #2
admiralelm11
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Re: Wilderness - A Little Taster

You did a really awesome job with this, Bry. I really liked it. I wouldn't mind seeing more of the Juno and her crew. It was really interesting to see a captain go to such lengths to recruit a First Officer.

Great job!
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Old November 6 2012, 11:42 PM   #3
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Very interesting. In particular I love the period in which it is set - ten years before TNG is an era that has never been touched and is ripe with possibilities.

The uber-nerd in me wants to replace "runabout" with "shuttlecraft" but I'll beat him down and finish by saying I'm looking forward to reading more!
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Old November 7 2012, 12:44 AM   #4
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Re: Angry Fanboy

Angry Fanboy wrote: View Post
The uber-nerd in me wants to replace "runabout" with "shuttlecraft" but I'll beat him down and finish by saying I'm looking forward to reading more!
Just an earlier class of runabout.
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Old November 7 2012, 07:19 AM   #5
Bry_Sinclair
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Re: Wilderness - A Little Taster

That was my thinking. The runabout is a very rugged and robust little ship I didn't think it would be a new thing so I slipped in an older design (I see the internal arrangement being cockpit with the crew cabin behind, with the modules at the back, whilst the nacelles were at the top rather than the bottom, like on the Danube-Class).

I was going to have a line in about how Rhyth would've used one of the Juno's shuttles, but with only a fortnight to go until launch, she needed something faster and so got a loan of the Kilimanjaro from the shipyard. Not sure I'll include one in the normal shuttle complement though.
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Old November 7 2012, 10:05 AM   #6
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Re: Wilderness - A Little Taster

Runabouts aside, I'll agree with the Fanboy with regards to the time in which the story is set.
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Old November 7 2012, 05:24 PM   #7
Bry_Sinclair
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Re: Wilderness - A Little Taster

Portside Docking Port, U.S.S. Juno
San Francisco Fleet Yards, Earth
Stardate: 35003.9 (January 2nd, 2358)

Aewyhn’s heart was thundering in his chest. He was nervous and excited, joyous and terrified. It was the way he always felt when waiting to lay his eyes on his one and only love. It was ten days before the Juno was due to set off on her trailblazing mission, so the docking port was busy with new crewmembers reporting aboard to familiarise themselves with the ship before departure. He stood to the side, allowing the new arrivals entry and the station techs that were finished to leave. So many new faces, new names, new stories and new troubles for him to get to know and understand, but all that could wait an extra day or two; he had something far more important on his mind.

“Bridge to Aewyhn,” came the hoarse voice of Lieutenant Jorr.

“Yes Lieutenant?” he replied, never taking his eyes off those who were setting foot on the Juno for the first time.

“We’ve just had the latest service jackets transferred to our database. Personnel needs your authorisation for security confirmation.”

“Understood, I’ll be up shortly. Aewyhn out,” he closed the channel quickly knowing that Jorr would make some kind of remark. He had only known the Tellarite for a short time, but it was obvious that he was used to things being done to a stricter timetable.

With the Captain off the ship, and no First Officer in post, her duties had been divided up. Supervising the last of the refit work fell to Lieutenant Alden in Engineering, logistics and technical organisation were the responsibilities of Mr Jorr, whilst all personnel and administration matters were for Aewyhn to see too—just one of the benefits of being Second Officer. But at that moment in time, there was nothing that could have torn him away from where he stood.

Suddenly, everything went dark. There was a brief flash of confusion before the nerves in his face registered the soft palms covering his eyes, as he inhaled the light floral scent of soap, and the warmth of another body in very close proximity to his. A wide smile spread across his face as his heart threatened to pound its way out of his chest.

“Guess who,” a soft, familiar voice purred into his ear.

“That’s a toughy.”

“Have you forgotten me already?”

“Seems that way.”

Slowly, the hands moved away from his purple eyes, the fingertips gently following the contours of his face, along his jaw and down his neck, before resting on his shoulders. He turned away from the airlock and looked down onto the most beautiful face he had ever seen; soft features, straight nose, full lips and deep green eyes, all framed by an thick mane of thick, dark hair.

“Hey you,” he said softly.

Before he could say another word she wrapped her arms around his neck and planted a kiss on his lips. The sensation was so perfect that everything beyond their two bodies fell away to nothing, all the people the corridors, the noise, all of it was forgotten. He gripped her lithe body in his hands, afraid that the moment might vanish if he didn’t hold onto it, and kissed her back just as intensely. For him, things didn’t get any better than that.

When they finally parted, he couldn’t wipe the grin from his face and nor could she.

“Hey you,” Erin Matheson replied.

As reality started to fall back into place around him, he became aware that there were a few crewmembers casting glances at them, but he paid them little attention—how else was a husband supposed to greet his wife after months apart?

“How did you get by me?” he asked, more than a little puzzled how she’d pulled it off.

“I contacted the transporter room and asked to be beamed aboard, explaining to the very accommodating chief that I wanted to surprise someone onboard.”

“Well consider me surprised, and remind me to thank that chief.”

“Will do.”

He offered her the crook of his arm and she slid hers through it, holding his muscled limb firmly as they moved away from the docking bay. He led her through the corridors at a leisurely pace, enjoying her closeness and the knowledge that she was with him.

“I hope no one’s going to see this as anything bad,” she began, her voice low. “You arranging with the Captain to have me assigned here.”

“Back on the Tian An Men, when she told me of her reassignment and asked me to accompany her I had to say yes—this is just too great an opportunity to turn down—but she was the one that asked me about requesting your transfer. She must’ve remembered all the great things I’d said about you when thinking of a new Science Officer, so how could I say no?”

“I’d better report in then, thank her in person.”

“She’ll be back tomorrow.”

“Where’s she been?” Erin asked, sounding a little confused.

“I’m not quite sure. All she told me was that it was a personnel matter and she’d be gone a few days. But with Captain Rhyth, you give her the benefit of the doubt and she always comes through.”

“I’ll keep that in mind,” she stated then looked around the corridors. “So where are we heading anyway?”

“Deck seven, section three, room one-oh-eight, our new home,” he told her, stopping at a turbolift alcove. “After that, I’ll give you the full tour.”

She raised herself up onto tiptoes and whispered into his ear, “I hope the tour starts in the bedroom.”

He glanced at her for a moment, long enough to see her wink, but before he could reply the turbolift arrived and the doors opened. She stepped in ahead of him and smiled sweetly at him. Oh yes, he was going to enjoy his new assignment, he determined as he followed his wife into the turbolift and quickly ordered it to deck seven.

* * * * *

END
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Old November 7 2012, 11:28 PM   #8
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Re: Wilderness - A Little Taster

Smashing, Bry. Absolutely smashing. I like the little bit of romance that you added.
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Old November 8 2012, 07:21 PM   #9
Bry_Sinclair
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Re: Wilderness - A Little Taster

Sickbay, Deck 7, U.S.S. Juno
San Francisco Fleet Yards, Earth
Stardate: 35010.1 (January 4th, 2358)

Doctor Kovaal moved from biobed to biobed, running a full check on each diagnostic table and display in a methodical and efficient manner. He was the only medical officer onboard the Juno, his staff were due to arrive in nineteen hours, two minutes and forty-nine seconds, but before they arrived he wanted to make sure that sickbay was prepped to his standards. After his inspection of both primary wards he would move on to catalogue everything in the adjoining store room—all tasks usually undertaken by medtechs, but he liked to ensure that everything was ready for any eventuality he could logically foresee.

For a ship of its size, he hadn’t expected such a substantial medical facility; in addition to the two primary wards there were two surgical suits, a recovery ward, a dedicated biomedical laboratory, four isolation rooms and a large personal office space. Though given the Juno being categorised a deep space scout ship, she would often be operating without support from starbases or other starships, so she needed to be self-sufficient.

“Communications to Doctor Kovaal,” the intercom chirped.

“Kovaal here, go ahead,” he replied promptly, not looking up from his diagnostic PADD.

“Sir, you have an incoming comlink from Vulcan.”

He stopped. All thoughts of his work and the many checks he still needed to conduct were forgotten. He had known that this call was inevitable, he just hadn’t expected it so soon.

“Understood. Please route it to my office. Kovaal out.”

He set the PADD on the bed he had been working on, turned on his heel and headed for his office, his pace calm measured, neither rushed nor dawdling—it would have been difficult for anyone watching him to know just how much he didn’t want to answer the incoming call. He stepped into his office and after the door closed behind him, he secured it then moved behind his desk. The terminal was flashing, indicating the waiting call.

He took a deep steadying breath and then tapped in his authorisation code. The Vulcan IDIC appeared on the monitor for a few moments, before vanishing and being replaced by the face of an older Vulcan woman, her face shared the same slim jaw and soft cheekbones he had, but her hair was onyx black and her eyes were dark hazel—his lighter hair colour and blue eyes had come from his father.

“Mother,” he began, “you look well.”

“As do you, Kovaal.” Her eyes narrowed slightly. He knew that would be the end of any attempt at pleasantries from T’Menna. “I understand you are in the Sol System.”

“That is correct,” he confirmed.

“This is the first time you have been so close to Vulcan in ten years, three months and eighteen days,” she stated, cutting him off. “Is there a reason that you have not returned home?”

“I have been very busy, Mother. I have been assigned to another ship and we are making preparations to depart.”

Her eyes narrowed a little further. “Another deep space assignment,” it wasn’t a question.

“Yes.”

“Kovaal, this is unacceptable. You have important matters to attend to on Vulcan. T’Pia awaits you.”

“I am aware of that, Mother.”

“You are still not wed, Kovaal. The betrothal must be honoured before matters of progeny arise.” Though almost undetectable, he could hear a shift in his mother’s tone at the mere thought of pon farr—despite being a simple biological drive, it was still a matter that many chose not to discuss, so for T’Menna to mention it he knew that she was becoming more irritated with his actions.

Since completing his internship onboard the U.S.S. Centaur, he had served onboard two other starships both of which had been on extended deep space missions, taking him far away from the Federation core and the demands placed upon him by tradition. It was the reason why he had sought out the Juno and requested a transfer, as the mission would take him into the unknown for at least another five years. His parents were at a loss to understand his career path and apparent refusal to marry T’Pia—a woman he hadn’t seen since he was ten.

“This is an excellent opportunity, Mother, and one I could not refuse. However, I understand the predicament this leaves you and Father with. Perhaps I could propose va-toh’vahr—”

“No,” T’Menna attested. “The betrothal will not be annulled.”

There was silence over the comlink. He had assumed that to be his mother’s response, but given the circumstances he had hoped that she would concede and release him from the obligation they had placed on him as an infant.

“Do you not have time to return to Vulcan.”

“There is insufficient time for both travel and the wedding ceremony.”

“Very well, we shall postpone it once again. However, upon your return you will come to Vulcan and marry T’Pia.

“As you wish, Mother. Peace and long life.”

“Live long and prosper, Kovaal.”

With that the channel closed and the IDIC reappeared on his screen. Had he been human, he might have sighed heavily and slouched back into his chair, instead the steepled his fingers and concentrated on the point his index fingers made. Focusing, he slowed his breathing and dropped his heart rate, using the meditation technique to calm the emotions that simmered under the surface of his calm exterior.

As much as he may have wanted to, he doubted he could ever make his parents understand his hesitance and by what his mother had told him, they were only going to tolerate this last delay. How could he tell his conservative parents that he just couldn’t follow their wishes and Vulcan tradition in this matter?

* * * * *

END
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Old November 25 2012, 08:17 AM   #10
Bry_Sinclair
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Re: Wilderness - A Little Taster

Main Engineering, Deck 9, U.S.S. Juno
San Francisco Fleet Yards, Earth
Stardate: 34999.3 (December 31st, 2357)

It was just after eighteen hundred hours and the engine room was empty. Gemma Alden stood, quietly surveying the master systems display, checking off all that had been accomplished that day. With their launch date fast approaching, they were making excellent progress, already a full three days ahead of schedule her crews work today had put them another full day in advance of where they needed to be.

At the start of the week, she’d promised herself that she would have the full warp assembly systems check completed before the beginning of the new year, so that had been the task she had set her people. A full, level one diagnostic on every component of the warp drive, from the fuel tanks, to the injectors, the warp core itself, the dilithium chamber, the power transfer conduits all the way out to the four nacelles, finally ending with the subspace field coils. It was a big job, but her crew had pulled out all the stops and gotten it done in record time. To show them her appreciation of all their hard work, she had given them the rest of the night and the following day off so as to fully enjoy the festivities. She had every intention of following her own order, but had to finish up a few last bits of paper work and have the system status reports ready for when Captain Rhyth returned.

As she checked off each item on her list, adding notation where needed as well as commending the work of a few exceptional officers and specialists, she couldn’t help but admire the design of the Juno. She had served aboard the Cheyenne-Class ship since she had launched, spent two years as Senior Diagnostics Officer and another two as Assistant Chief Engineering Officer. She had learned a great deal from her predecessor, Lieutenant Commander Adren Rhai, a man who had made his way up from an enlistee over an impressive fifty year career, a man she respected and admired. Since the refit began, when Rhai retired and recommended her as his replacement, it had dawned on her that in all her time as his deputy he’d been training up her to take over from him. The old Napean was wily; giving her more and more of the administrative work to handle, putting her in charge of several important projects and away missions, having her sit in on a few senior staff meetings, all so that she could get used to what was involved in the position.

She was just lucky that the ship’s new CO had taken a chance on her and heeded Rhai’s recommendation, as Alden suspected there weren’t many Captain’s who’d take such a chance on a new Chief Engineer for such a mission. But in the brief time she’d worked with Rhyth, Alden had come to find her to be a hard-working but fair woman, wanting solid results but not micromanaging the department to get them, leaving Alden to decide how best to achieve them. Which she’d only been able to do by getting to handpick several of her important posts, giving her a team she was proud to call hers. Of course, just because she’d managed to gather together a solid team, didn’t mean she was going to take it easy on them, she mused with a faint smile.

Shaking her head, she focused on the display once again and her datapad. She was expected to be in Boston by 1900 hours at the latest, as even by then her Gram’s New Year party would already be in full swing and building up to the bells. It was one of the rare occasions that as many Alden’s as possible got together, but with almost every one of her aunts, uncles, and cousins in Starfleet service it was difficult—her own parents would be able to make it this year, her father was on Jeballi IV helping with an outbreak of Parson’s Blood Fever, whilst her mother was busy commanding Deep Space One. Of course, she had more than enough relations to make a big fuss over her latest promotion and mission—many of whom would be a little bit envious of her for getting such a choice posting.

Pushing all thoughts of the night ahead—and trying not even to contemplate the hangover tomorrow (her Gram didn’t believe in synthohol)—she quickly finished off her checks, notations and made a few tweaks to the work schedule for January second, before switching off her PADD and heading out the exit.

“Computer, time.”

“The time is 1828 hours.”

“Which transporter room is in service this evening?”

“Transporter room three.”

She nodded to herself, as she had just enough time to nip to her quarters, have a quick shower, change (no uniforms were allowed at Gram’s parties), and get down to Earth before her Gram contacted Starfleet Security and sent out search teams—and as the former Director of that department, she would know just who to call to organise that.

* * * * *

END
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Old November 25 2012, 05:21 PM   #11
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Re: Wilderness - A Little Taster

I really enjoy the way you paint your characters; it makes your stories rich and enjoyable.
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Old November 25 2012, 08:55 PM   #12
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Angry Fanboy

I'm enjoying it very much so far!

Loving the setting of a few years before the start of The Next Generation.
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Old November 26 2012, 02:34 PM   #13
Bry_Sinclair
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Re: Wilderness - A Little Taster

Thank you gents. I have three other characters to fully introduce: Brek chim Jorr, Oleyn Daro and Xal Ra-Vahlei.

After that I have a couple little pieces to do in order to round out the launch of the Juno's mission. Hopefully get them done in the next fortnight.
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Old November 26 2012, 08:53 PM   #14
Bry_Sinclair
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Re: Wilderness - A Little Taster

Shuttlebay One, Deck 8, U.S.S. Juno
San Francisco Fleet Yards, Earth
Stardate: 35007.3 (January 3rd, 2358)

Brek chim Jorr stood on the landing deck of the cavernous shuttlebay one, watching as the Himalaya-Class runabout passed through the protective forcefield. The Juno had two shuttlebays at the rear of the ship, between which was located the aft torpedo launcher. Both were two decks high, with the control booth on the deck above, whilst beneath him was one large hangar where the shuttles were stored and maintained when not on operational standby. Though the shuttlebay, craft and pilots were under the purview of the Conn Officer, he needed to be kept apprised of its status in his role as Operations Manager, so he knew all the ins and outs bay and what went on.

The Kilimanjaro had been borrowed from the fleet yard so the Captain could go...somewhere. Her trip had been shrouded in mystery, all she’d said about it was that it was a personnel matter which would take her a few days to resolve. Jorr wasn’t a fan of mysteries or Captain’s going off half-cocked for days at a time—something made worse when he barely knew them.

The runabout landed graceful on the deck with a light metallic thud. He stood close to the bay entrance and watched as the warp nacelles and impulse engines powered down, before the starboard side outer hatch opened and the steps unfolded from the side of the craft. It was only then that he approached the runabout, a PADD clutched in his hand, ready to give Rhyth a full report.

He heard the inner airlock open and expected to see the blonde Trill exit, so when a muscular human male stepped out of the Kilimanjaro he stopped and scowled. The man had a crew cut of sandy-brown hair, with a few days’ worth of stubble to match, as his blue eyes taking in the shuttlebay, Jorr quickly surveyed the newcomer. He was in red, with Commander pips clearly displayed, whilst a duffle bag was slung over his left shoulder.

“Who are you?” Jorr asked as he approached the front of the runabout, followed by a gruff snort.

The man looked down on him them stepped onto the deck, the polite smile on his face didn’t reach his eyes. If the ranking officer disliked the abrupt challenge from a Lieutenant, he gave no sign of it.

“Commander Saul Keller. You must be Lieutenant Jorr,” he said offering his hand.

Just then another head popped out of the hatch. This one he did know and gave a questioning look.

“Mr Jorr, this is out new exec,” Captain Rhyth informed him. “I had to go and convince him to leave his last posting, and then give him a lift here.”

“I see,” he said slowly, not taking his eyes off her as she joined the two men. The Commander, obviously twigged to the fact that the handshake wasn’t going to happen, lowered his hand.

“I’ve cleared it with Personnel when we were heading back, his service jacket should be logged in the next day or two.

“I trust everything’s gone smoothly,” she said, quickly changing the topic.

He handed her the PADD. “Of course,” he informed her, a little bothered at the idea that he wouldn’t be on top of matters onboard. As Rhyth quickly looked over the PADD, he focused on her, but became aware that the Commander was looking him up and down. Jorr was unlike most Tellarite, a species often seen to be short and squat, he stood only a few centimetres short of the human and, though not as muscled, had a firm physique. He left the Commander alone, after all it wasn’t the first time he’d been scrutinised due to his unusual appearance. He informed the Captain of a few points that hadn’t been listed, such as the arrival of Lieutenant Matheson and her request to meet at her earliest convenience, as well as the latest round of stress tests were underway and due to be completed within the next eight hours, and that the holodeck memory core had needed replaced, as it had proved to have insufficient capacity for the crew’s needs.

She listened and nodded whilst continuing to read the latest updates. Once he was finished, she finished up her cursory inspection of the duty logs then tucked the datapad under her arm.

“Everything looks good, Mr Jorr, I should leave you alone more often,” she commented with a smile.

“I know this ship, sir,” he told her proudly. He had served on the Juno since she’d launched five years ago and in that time had run countless diagnostics, crawled through kilometres of Jefferies tubes, tweaked and tinkered with every system onboard, in short he’d left his mark just about everywhere and took great pride in that knowledge.

“That you do,” she told him. She paused and looked over her shoulder at the Kilimanjaro, resting quietly on the deck. “Lieutenant, the Juno is rated to carry a runabout, isn’t she?”

“The Cheyenne-Class is capable of storing one, but there has never been one onboard the Juno.”

“Hmm,” she mused. “I was just thinking that it might be useful to have one, I can think of several occasions when having a micro-starship could come in handy.”

Jorr looked back at the Himalaya-Class ship. “It would carry a few problems with it though. Our shuttle complement would be cut by half and we don’t have the facilities to swap out modules, so it would only be equipped with whatever it was loaded with before we departed.

“However, seeing as how it would be a larger, multifunction vessel, it would replace the need of several shuttles,” he concluded. “Shall I make some calls?”

Rhyth flashed him a bright smile. “If you wouldn’t mind, Lieutenant.”

“Of course. Shall I organise a tour for the Commander?”

“I’ll see to that. There are a few things I need to go over with Saul, and I need to get him up to speed with the refit work. I’ll also organise a conference for this afternoon, to do some introductions with the senior officers.

“On that note, is there any word on lieutenants Daro and Ra-Vahlei?”

“They’re both due on the transport ship Nash the day after tomorrow. So far however there haven’t been any problems with their departments, I’ve been co-ordinating with Lieutenant Stell and Ensign Martinez over the last week until the chiefs arrive.”

Rhyth clapped a hand on his shoulder. “What would happen on this ship without you, Lieutenant?”

“I dread to think, Captain.”

She and the Commander laughed. “So do I, Mr Jorr. I won’t keep you a moment longer. We’ll be up on the Bridge later. Comm me if you need me.”

“Aye sir,” he replied as she and the new XO headed for the exit. Jorr took one last look at the runabout and sighed. He’d have to pull in a favour with the dock master in order to get the ship attached to the Juno, a favour he had hoped he wouldn’t need to call on quite so soon, but he had his orders.

* * * * *

END
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Old November 26 2012, 09:07 PM   #15
Angry Fanboy
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I just realised that the himalaya-class runabouts are named after mountains just like the danube-class ones are all named after rivers!

Strange how much of a kick I get out of that!
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