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Alenis Meru
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Mission Five: "Unto the Breach"

Fri Jul 03, 2015 6:57 am

Here is the thread for mission five!

Note: Mission Five takes place several months after mission four. Of course, the main noticable thing in this is that our characters have gotten to know each other a bit better, and Ellen Washington is only a couple months away from giving birth...

This will be a joint mission with the Endeavour, with each ship doing one part, then getting together for the third part.

Some teaser quotes from the Endeavour's part of the mission:

Nova Europa Colony:

"We are the Borg. You will be assimilated. Your biological and technological distinctiveness will be added to our own. Resistance is futile."

From his standing position, Marcus tapped his comm badge and said, "This is Commander Byrne. Red alert. All hands to battle stations. Prepare for an invasion. This is not a drill."

With that, the senior officers broke from the meeting, rushing to their respective places. As she left, Lt. Cmdr. Flores said, "Well, you wanted some adventure. If we make it out of this, you're on for dinner."

Bridge, USS Endeavour

"Lieutenant Swiftpaws, prepare to launch the shuttle," she called out, looking down at the helm station. They had the unusual situation of having two helmsmen aboard; Petty Officer Sandyman was there too in order to assist Miracle in flying two ships at once. "Lieutenant McKinnon, prepare to route auxiliary power to the engines and weapons; I want to hit them hard and fast."

In orbit around Nova Europa

The shuttle "Ole Grumpy" rose above the bubble and shot forward towards the Borg Sphere, then it disappeared into warp to reappear close to the Borg Sphere at max sublight speeds and slammed into the Borg Sphere....

The effects where without question beyond spectacular. For the first second it seemed as if nothing was happening outside of the initial impact, but than the entire sphere just ceased to exist the energy of the impact created enough energy to turn most of it in vapor and the little which was left as solid matter was blasted away. The Endeavour's sensor array just went totally blank and shut down due the radiation and sensory overloads and the shields flared up with great intensity blasting away gases, derbies and radiation.

The caves of Nova Europa

In the cave, things were desperate. The Borg had quickly adapted to the phasers and things had degenerated into hand-to-hand combat. The survivors had pushed back as far as they could into the caverns and had, literally, hit the wall.

Marcus rubbed his face with his hand, trying to find some sort of plan. If they had been outside, they would have seen the spectacular display of the Borg ship's demise. Instead they got an increasingly erratic enemy who had just been cut from the Collective. The drones were scared, angry, and alone for the first time since their assimilation.

All of that led to more ferocity in their attack. Marcus took note of the weakened ceiling in the section above their position and the main portion of the attacking drones. If they hit it just right, they might be able to buy some time for rescue. He leaned toward Yvette and Fotu. With an finger pointing at the cave ceiling, he commanded, "Aim there, bring it down."


After a few seconds, a series of loud cracks sounded the collapse of the cavern ceiling. Rocks piled up and dust was tossed around making things virtually invisible.

As the dust settled, Marcus noticed that the new rock wall had cut off the large majority of the attacking Borg. There were a few stragglers still with the survivors, but they were now safely trapped. Taking the moment of calm, Marcus nodded toward the few remaining Borg as he went towards the back of the cavern to check on the wounded.

Zureel was at the far rear of the cave, clutching his shattered and now-misshapen left leg; either a Borg had sent the Saurian flying with a mighty bash, or he was simply unlucky during the scrabble. Remaining conscious, the crewman met eyes with Marcus. "Commander," he hissed in pain, but managed a brave nod. "Let'sss hope we don't die here."

Transporter Room Two, USS Endeavour

Marcus had resigned himself long ago to the necessity of the transporter, and this time he felt very grateful for such technology. However, that never stopped him from hating the disorientation felt after being beamed from such a difficult place. '112 people coming home... out of 3,000,' thought Marcus with more than a hint of sadness. His sadness was eased a bit by the relief that they had gotten so many out, there had been other colonies and outposts which couldn't claim even one.

Bridge, USS Endeavour

"Let's get out of here!" exclaimed Kate. "Maximum wa--"

It was too late. The Endeavour shuddered as it was hit by a plasma torpedo. The cube was bearing down upon them, firing all weapons, making it impossible for them to go to warp.

"Evasive maneuvers," shouted Kate as the ship shuddered again. "Head for the asteroid belt; maybe we can lose them there!"

Bridge, USS Endeavour

The tactical officer, Ensign Tina Ashingvale, pulled her phaser a fraction of a second too late as a Borg materialized practically on top of her. With a mighty upward swing, the junior officer was sent sailing across the bridge, sent into a bulkhead with crushing force. She crumpled to a heap, unconscious, or worse.


Kate looked around her bridge. From the consoles on the port side where brave officers were fighting bravely to the starboard side where the Borg had completely taken over. Kate raised an eyebrow as she realised that the Borg weren't assimilating anyone, but before she could 'investigate' further another drone appear in front of her and even though people around her tried defending their Captain the drone said "resistance is futile" and disappeared in the Borg's familiar green transporter beam, taking the Endeavours young Captain with him. Immediately followed by the other borg drones transporting off the bridge as well. It almost seamed as if Kate was the target of the attack.
Capt. Alenis Meru
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Re: Mission Five: "Unto the Breach"

Fri Jul 03, 2015 7:11 am

A special guest...
Airlock, USS Portland (docked at Starbase 132)
MD -15, morning.
Authors: Alenis Meru, Timothy Rouse

Docked at Starbase 132, the USS Portland was undergoing extensive retrofits. A second reactor, this one run on a classified energy source referred to only as “dark energy” was being tested, and an aging Miranda class starship was considered the best possible testbed for the advanced technology. The crew had been given some well-deserved time off while the engineers did their work, most of which was top secret and above the clearance level of anyone on the ship, captain included.

But shore leave was over, and walking through the corridors of the starbase to the ship that they called home was Captain Alenis Meru and her trusty sidekick and close confidant, Commander Rouse.

“…and it’s really nice this time of year. I think I’m going to get a retirement property in one of the valleys, a little place I can stop by for shore leave and move into when I tire of the Starfleet life."

“That’s great!” exclaimed Tim. “You know, I’ve been thinking about something like that… now that I’m going to have a son, I’ve been dreaming about a two-story house with a white picket fence on Earth somewhere…” Tim paused for a moment and decided to change the subject. "How was your tour of the Nightingale?"

"Very eventful," replied Alenis. "What was supposed to be a simple cruise turned into... well, I'll tell you about it later."

Unfortunately, their conversation was cut short by their arrival at their destination. Standing at the airlock, with Tim at her side and Ko-ko perched upon her shoulder, Alenis was dreading the moment they were to open for she knew exactly who would be on the other side. “Are you ready?” she asked.

“How bad could it be?” replied Tim in a gentle tone. “It’s the Portland.”

“Oh, you haven’t heard about our special guest?” asked Alenis, raising an eyebrow. “Trust me, it’s bad.”

The airlock doors whooshed open to reveal a tall, severe looking Andorian in a black uniform. “Captain Alenis,” called out Shras th’Karath, the head of the dark energy project. “I was told you were dead.”

“Oh, how I wish I were,” replied Alenis in a droll voice. She couldn’t stand even being in the same room as the man. “Shras, you remember Commander Rouse, right? And Ko-ko?”

Ko-ko simply glared at Shras, taking up a defensive posture on Alenis’ shoulder.

“How can I forget?” he asked rhetorically, taking on a patronizing tone. “Now, Captain, I don’t need to tell you and your goon here about the importance of this project. The dark energy reactor could revolutionize space travel. I trust that you will be more diligent in your duties than the last time we met?”

Alenis’ eyes narrowed. “You mean the time your little stasis field contraption started interfering with the fabric of space-time?”

“I’ll have you know that our team is working the bugs out,” replied Shras defensively. In truth, the project had been put on the back burner as the bugs turned out to be larger than anticipated. And, though he would never admit it, the tests on the Portland did grant his team some valuable information about the device, just not the information he desired. “No thanks to you and your disregard for my technology.”

“Actually, it’s my ship,” shot back Alenis, “including everything on it, such as shuttles, experimental pieces of technology, and your ass.”

“Technically, my ass belongs to Starfleet command,” replied Shras in a dismissive tone, passing Alenis a PADD. “You see that? Those are Admiral Cresswell’s orders, stating that I am to be given free reign and access to any and all of the ships systems in order to complete my research.” He smiled slightly. “A silly thing to have to say, I know, but the last time I was on board, I seem to recall not quite having your full cooperation or that of the crew.”

Alenis gritted her teeth. “Are we quite done yet? Ko-ko is getting hungry, and I think your antennae remind her of the worms on her home planet.”

“For now,” replied Shras, scowling at Tim and Alenis. “For now.” With that, he turned in place and stiffly walked away.

Alenis turned to Tim. “It’s going to be a long mission…”
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Re: Mission Five: "Unto the Breach"

Thu Jul 09, 2015 4:03 am

Personal Log of Commander Shras
Author: Cmdr. Shras (played by Alenis Meru)

Well, I have good news and bad news. The good news is that the head of Starfleet R&D has finally authorized the installation of a prototype dark energy reactor and associated systems into a ship. The bad news is that it’s the USS Portland.

I don’t know what I’ve done to deserve this or who in the admiralty I’ve pissed off, but I’ve already lodged several dozen letters of complaint at being assigned to such a sub-par ship. I’ve heard that they have gotten some new crew since my last visit, which I suppose is a good thing; they can’t possibly be any worse than the crew from the last time I had the displeasure of conducting experiments on board.

I suppose things have not been so bad this time; I’ve at least been given some office space where I can work in peace for now, however the Chief Science Officer is returning soon and I will end up having the indignity of sharing research space with him. I’ve sent in a letter protest with Admiral Washington and am looking forward to hearing his response.

The one curious thing is that the main computer core seems to be running slightly slower than usual. I first noticed it when I was trying to do some simple hyper-dimensional calculations and it took several milliseconds longer than expected. Apparently some holo-program is using system resources. I tried to delete it but was locked out, and everyone seems tight-lipped about the nature of this program. I will have to investigate; this 0.17% loss of efficiency in the main computer is completely unacceptable.

Computer, end log.
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Re: Mission Five: "Unto the Breach"

Mon Jul 13, 2015 12:04 pm

Hiding out
Time: MD -11
Location: USS Portland – Deck 01 - XO’s Office
With Commander Timothy Rouse, Executive Officer and PO Ellen Washington, Nurse and highly pregnant woman.

Tim entered his office and was greeted by Ellen lying on his couch. He slowed his pace and walked to her. “Hello gorgeous.” He kissed her softly. “To what do I own this pleasure?” He said with a grin.

“I’m hiding.” She said with a soft voice and winced as she tried to move in another position.

“From who?” he asked, trying to ignore the obvious discomfort she was in. He learned from experience that there would be no point at all in asking her about it, or even suggesting her to take it slower. Being in her seventh month of pregnancy now came with its discomforts.

“Everybody. Somehow there seems to be a flu pandemic going on at the ship. Sickbay is flooded all day with people with headaches, sore muscles, dripping noses and a cough. It’s so tire ring. I can barely feel my feet.” At the cautious look Tim gave her she quickly said. “Don’t worry. I was wearing the electronic safety mask at all times. And got the inoculations.” Showing him the canister for the mask.

“If it’s too much for you, you should let the Lieutenant know so he can take you off the schedule.” He looked at her. “Like I told you about a thousand times by now. You really need to take it slower.”

“Because I’m as fat as a whale and walk like a penguin doesn’t mean I can’t work anymore, Tim.”

“You’re not fat, sweetie, you’re pregnant.” Tim argued back, knowing it was pointless. She wasn’t going to change her opinion about this fact. He loved how her body was showing off that his son was growing inside her. It made him proud. He grinned as he stared at her, thinking back how her body had changed. “Do you want something to drink?” he asked as he walked towards his replicator. As she affirmed his question he ordered a drink for both of them. He joined her on the couch and took her legs on his lap. Knowing of one subject that would change her mind off the fat topic for long enough, he hoped, he asked her. “Have you chosen what nursery room you want jet?” She had been showing him different images on Padd’s many times. So many he couldn’t even remember how many, or what kind there were.

She laughed, knowing very well that it didn’t matter anything to him how their son’s room would look. “I’ve narrowed it down to 5 options. I’m waiting for Irma’s shipping to arrive. She promised to send some stuff from Suzy when she was a baby. There is also some decorations with it, so I’m waiting to see it in real before I decide what furniture goes best with it. Did you inquire if we can change the wall colors or not.”

“Wait, Irma. When did you talk to her?” Tim asked, curious when Ellen and his sister in law had met.

“Yes, Judith introduced us a while ago by subspace. The change that we would be close enough to earth to visit her in real is very small.” She explained. “I don’t have any friends with kids, and if I have to wait for my brothers to get me any sister in laws I can wait forever, or so it seems.”

“Ah,” He had nothing again Irma, he just didn’t understand why she could be of any assistance to Ellen. Must be a woman thing.

“But you didn’t answer my question. Can we paint the wall of the nursery or not?” Ellen asked.

“You need to know that now?”

“I needed to know it 5 weeks ago when I first asked you to ask it.” She answered annoyed.

“Sorry, I was busy. Didn’t have time jet to ask it. I’ll go by Ops soon, ok?” Seeing Ellen’s face he asked in surprise. “You want me to ask it now?”

“Yes, please. This room needs to be done soon, this baby is going to arrive in 8 weeks.” She replied.

Having a feeling she had a different sense of time as him, he decided to not argue with her but go downstairs to see a guy about painting a room…..
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Re: Mission Five: "Unto the Breach"

Sun Jul 19, 2015 4:03 am

You again...
Science Department, Deck 6, USS Portland
MD -10
Authors: Lt. Jason Beauvoir, Cmdr. Shras th'Zarath (played by Alenis Meru)

Jason had just returned to duty from his shoreleave. He was making his way to his office when he noticed a familiar Andorian. Approaching the man he asked. "What the Hell are you doing here?"

"I have had the misfortune of being assigned to this miserable ship yet again," replied Shras as he turned and glared at Jason. He reached for a PADD on his desk and shoved it into Jason's hands. "Here. My orders. Straight from your good friend Admiral Cresswell, if you would care to read them. He had quite a few things to say about you, many of which I can corroborate. But that's neither here nor there, the important thing is that my experiments are top priority, and I expect to have my run of the department."

Jason to the PADD and skimmed it and then said. "I hate to break it to you, but this is my department and as such any equipment or personnel you need will require written request certified by myself." His voice held no trace of sympathy. "So, can you handle that, or are you going to go back to Cresswell and hide beneath his shirts?"

Shras let out a brief laugh and sneered at Jason. "You seriously think that I would entrust anything to do with the dark energy reactor to you or any of your staff?" Shras laughed again, even harder this time, and placed a hand on Jason's shoulder. "Do not worry, Lieutenant," he said, emphasizing Jason's lower rank, "I only need a little office space -- which your captain has so generously agreed to provide -- and the occasional use of your sensor array. I won't be interrupting your little potato batteries and baking soda volcanoes."

"Shows how much you know, we use Betazoid tubas not potatoes and 'volcanoes' are much more impressive when you use powdered phosphorous." Jason replied deadpan.

"Fascinating," shot back Shras in the same deadpan tone. "You should really consider getting your findings published."

Jason laughed humourlessly. "Very amusing, now get the hell out of my Department." He said, turning his back on the Andorian and heading for his office.

"All right, Lieutenant, I suppose if we are going to be immature about this, I can play that game...


The next day:

Jason wasn't happy that Shras was on board, but at least he'd got the man out of his department. Entering his department the Chief Science Officer found tape transecting the floor of his department. Trying to remain calm he asked, "Who put this here?"

"I did," called out Shras as he stood up from a work terminal on the left side of the starboard side of the lab. "Since you have chosen to be immature about the unfortunate reality that we are to share office space, I've taken the liberty of devising a system that even you can understand." Shras pointed towards the orange tape bisecting the room. "Me and my staff will stay on the starboard side, and you and your staff will be able to use the port side of the lab for whatever it is that you do all day. Oh, and don't bother trying to peel the tape up, I used a permanent adhesive."

"So where pray tell did you come up with this idea? From some ancient Earth children's sitcom?" Jason asked.

"Well, little buddy, I reasoned that if it worked with Gilligan, it might work for you." Shras sighed in frustration. "My roommate at the academy had an unfortunate interest in 20th century earth culture. It's a shame, really, Cadet Paris could have been a great scientist if only he didn't spend so much time living in the past."

Jason stared at the man in disgust. Then the thought of himself dragging the still protesting Andorian to an airlock and venting him in to space brought a smile to his face followed by another when he noticed something that Shras. "Sir," He began in faux respect. "I hope you and your staff will be comfortable on your side of the department, even without access to an exit or the restrooms."

Shras opened his mouth to reply, but then closed it again. As he looked around the room, he realized that Jason was right. He had failed to take into account which side the door was on. Steaming mad, he clenched his fists for a moment as his eyes darted around the room, panicking. "No matter," he replied in his usual arrogant tone, "I can use the Jeffries tubes; it is after all a rather small price to pay for some semblance of order on this ship."

"So you're willing to inconvenience yourself and your staff in order annoy me? And I thought Cresswell was a stubborn, pompous ass." Jason said.

Shras grimaced. Unable to admit that Jason was right, he simply said, "It is a small price to pay."

Jason just rolled his eyes and said "Suit yourself."
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Re: Mission Five: "Unto the Breach"

Fri Aug 07, 2015 1:27 am

Something Brewing in Engineering
Main Engineering, USS Portland
MD -10
Authors: Sera Williams, Nikki Barclay & Shras (played by Alenis Meru)

Sera rushed through the Main Engineering doors. Sera had been aboard Starbase 132 finishing up the final requisition orders for the Portland before her comm badge had gone w an urgent message from Nikki. It was mostly Nikki frantically telling her that something was going on and that Sera needed to get to Engineering immediately. Sera knew Nikki, and sometimes things tended to be a bit... exaggerated. However, as soon as the Chief Engineer came through the main doors, she saw how serious things had become.

Parts of Engineering had been partitioned to effectively transform engineering into two sections, one of them being blocked from view from the rest. There were also Starfleet personnel wearing a slightly different set of uniforms, maybe an updated or alternate set to differentiate them from the rest of the Portland crew. Here eyes found Nikki arguing with one of the new officers, an Andorian. Sera swiftly walked over to the Nikki and the Andorian.

Seeing Sera approach, Shras broke off his argument with Nikki and pulled out a PADD, holding it out for Sera. "Ah, Lieutenant Williams," he called out, recognizing her from her personnel file. "I have your new orders here."

Sera had opened her mouth to speak, but Shras had given her the PADD containing new orders. Her orders clearly stated that the chain of command had been changed a bit. Instead of reporting to her Captain, she would now be reporting only to Shras. This effectively put the entire Engineering department under Shras, if she was still the Chief Engineer. "Sir, it says I'll be the only Portland crewmember transferring to your command?" she asked with a bit of confusion. Looking between Shras and Nikki, Sera added, "Am I still the Chief Engineer?"

Shras chuckled slightly at the thought. "Relieve you of those duties and allow Ms. Barclay to be Chief Engineer? I think not." He looked up at the warp core for a moment; it was a shame that they had chosen such an archaic ship as a testbed for the most advanced technology in the fleet, but the powers that be evidently didn't want to risk a ship that was actually useful. "You will still be responsible for the engineering staff -- including keeping them from knowing more than they have to -- as well as the basic maintenance of ship's systems. However, you will also be my systems integration specialist, responsible for ensuring that any experimental technologies are properly integrated into the Portland's systems." Shras handed Sera a small data dongle. "Here is everything you need to know in a convenient encrypted data device; fortunately for you it's only seven kiloquads of data. I've also taken the liberty of including a pattern for you to replicate yourself a new uniform." Shras paused for effect. "Congratulations, Lieutenant Williams, it is a great honour to be accepted as part of my team."

Sera was completely shocked. It took her a moment to be able to speak, and even she still didn't quiet understand the full magnitude of what was happening. "Thank you, sir," was all that she could muster. Someone looking at the Chief Engineer's face would have compared her to a deer caught in the headlights.

Her eyes went from Shras to Nikki. The horrified look on Nikki's face must have snapped Sera out of her daze. She was extremely torn about the turn of events. She loved the Portland, and had just began to make inroads into being a good Chief Engineer. This was the first mission where she'd be in charge of things without the ship being docked. However, this would be a major roadblock to earning the trust of those in her department. She had graduated the Academy only a few months ago and had leapt to the Chief position at the expense of those who had been on the ship for years. On the other hand, she didn't trust Shras or any of his, well hers now, crew to safely install the new technology. None of them knew any of the Portland's quirks and oddities like she did. No matter how much she didn't want to, Sera had to take the position. With an apologetic look to Nikki, Sera turned to Shras and stood a little straighter. "It's an honor, Sir," she said using her best duty voice, trying to sound convincing.

"Yes, yes, it is, for you," replied Shras in a dismissive tone. "Now, could you be a dear and get your staff to quit lollygagging and distracting my team? They are wasting valuable time, not to mention compromising the classified nature of this project."

"Yes, sir," Sera said mostly because she knew the conversation was over and it was all she could think to say. As the Andorian began to walk away, Sera turned her face to Nikki. She motioned for Nikki to follow her. Sera was fairly sure Nikki would be upset over what just happened, so Sera thought it'd be best to talk to her one on one. Sera then stepped outside the Main Engineering doors into the corridor.

Nikki gave Shras one last glare before turning to follow Sera. Shras simply glared back.

As soon as the doors whoosed shut behind Nikki, Sera began, "Nikki, I'm sorry. Our department has been under Starfleet scrutiny and we can't go against their orders no matter how much I disagree with what's happening."

"It's not fair," protested Nikki in a high-pitched voice. She was on the verge of tears with what was happening. "Sera, this guy is even worse than Protein Cube, and now he's going to be splitting the department, bossing us around, and undermining your authority. You should file a complaint with the captain or something; I don't know how we're going to be able to work like this!"

"I don't think Shras would be here if the Captain had say in the matter." Sera put a hand on Nikki's shoulder, then added, "I'll talk to the Captain, but I don't know what will come of it." She looked around for a moment to make sure the corridor was clear before she continued, "Nikki, for now I need you to take my old position... Acting Chief Engineer."

Nikki froze in place for a moment, then started shaking uncontrollably and emitting a sound that was halfway between a squeal of pain and a shriek of terror. "A--a--a--assistant chief engineer?" she stammered as all the blood drained out of her face. A million different thoughts at once began flowing through her head. Is this my big break? My big chance to move out of my uncle's shadow? Will I be able to handle it? What if I have problems? But the scariest thought was the fact that with Sera working with Shras, she would be taking on the role of acting chief engineer while she was busy. Though she had (barely) passed the leadership portion of her academy courses, she had never actually been the manager of anything, preferring to apply her technical skills to a project in a more low-key way.

"I'll do my best," she blurted out, immediately regretting her choice of words. "I mean, I'll do better than my best. A hundred and ten -- no, a hundred and twenty percent! I'll make this the most efficient engineering department in Starfleet! And I won't let you down, I promise!"

Sera couldn't help but smile at Nikki's enthusiasm. Maybe she was making a mistake, things would be tense in Engineering for the duration of the experiment. "Listen, all I need is for the ship to stay flying and the two crews not to go to war."

"Okay." Nikki tried to control her breathing but to no avail; after a few moments she was hyperventilating uncontrollably. "I got this. I got this. I got this..."

Sera smiled reasurringly, and said with confidence, "You'll be fine." The Chief was saying that more to herself. She needed reasurring this time.
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Re: Mission Five: "Unto the Breach"

Sun Aug 09, 2015 6:44 pm

We need to talk...
Captain's Office, USS Portland
MD -08
Authors: Alenis Meru, Sera Williams

Alenis had wondered how long it would take for Shras to start causing trouble in engineering, and if the panicked message she got from one Ensign Barclay was any indication, her suspicion that it wouldn't be very long was being proven correct. The sheer number of personnel reports -- and the amount of proverbial black ink on them -- for all of Shras' team was enough to drive her crazy.

But, while working on these personnel reports, she was interrupted by the chime of the door. It opened to reveal Sera, clad in a strange black uniform, one which Alenis recognized as being the same that Shras wore in her last unfortunate encounter with her. "Lieutenant Williams," she called out, her eyes darting from Sera's uniform to the PADD in her hands and back, "you're out of uniform."

Sera blushed a bit, though it was more out of being nervous. She knew that this was a conversation that she needed to have, though that didn't mean that she wanted to have it. "That is what I wanted to talk about Captain." Sera then motioned towards the empty chair across the desk from the Meru. "May I?"

"I insist," replied Alenis, her eyes narrowing as she focused on the young officer in front of her.

"Earlier this morning, Ensign Barclay asked that I come to Engineering... that something was going on. When I arrived, I found Barclay and Commander Shras arguing." She paused a moment to shift uncomfortably in her seat, this was the bad part. "Upon my arrival, the Commander notified me that I had been reassigned to his team, per Starfleet Command."

Part of the Chief Engineer wanted to throw herself into the floor and beg the Captain to do something about it, though she knew that wouldn't do any good. "He also informed me that I would still serve as the Chief Engineer after he handed me the orders and the experiemental data. In order to protect the ship from them, I accepted... but I promoted Ensign Barclay to Assistant Chief Engineer in order to help me protect the crew."

Sera knew she had just laid a lot on the Captain, and she honestly didn't know how Meru would handle the situation. She truly felt like groveling. Sera usually showed little emotion in this sort of official capacity, though this time she fought back tears and her face felt like it was on fire.

"I am... familiar with Ensign Barclay," replied Alenis. If she remembered correctly, Barclay was the nervous wreck fresh out of the academy. To be honest, Alenis didn't see much leadership potential in her, but engineering was Sera's department now and these kinds of decisions were up to her. "If you think she's up to the job, then that's your perogative. As for Shras..."

Alenis sighed deeply and placed her hand on her head. Normally she would try to conceal her fillings and not show her exasperation in an effort to avoid showing weakness, but Shras was just too much. "I don't like this any more than you do, Lieutenant, but it seems as though we have little choice in the matter. You're going to have to try to keep the peace down in engineering, between your crew and Shras' team. This situation is hardly ideal, but because of the importance and secrecy of this project, I don't see us having any options besides toughing it out for the time being and hoping Shras doesn't provoke a mutiny."

"The experiemt is promising, but I hope the crew can handle all of this added stress." Sera replied. Things weren't at mutiny level yet, but she had already broken up a couple of fistfights and been called a 'traitor' more than once. She was also talking about the fact that the Captain's own funeral hadn't been very long ago. "Does Starfleet need anything delivered to Risa anytime soon?" she asked, only half joking.

"I wish," replied Alenis, smiling at Sera momentarily. "Now, Lieutenant, what can you tell me about these dark energy systems? I don't like the idea of having some unholy contraption on my ship and being kept in the dark about what it is and what it does.

And there it was, the request that cause Sera the most dread. Unable to look her Captain in the eye, Sera replied, "Captain... I'm, under orders from Admiral Washington. As much as I want to, I can't tell you anything but the dark energy systems are wanted for a future ship design." She had still not made it through all of the data Shras had given her, but had painstakenly read most of it. It was certainly dangerous, but it showed much promise.

Alenis' eyes narrowed and a serious expression appeared on her face. "Lieutenant Williams, you may have been recruited to Shras' team, but you're still my Chief Engineer, and I want to know what sort of unholy contraption is being installed on my ship."

With a slow breath, Sera looked down at the desk in front of her. This was probably going to end with her being reassigned as soon as the experiement was over, but she had to follow orders. "All that I can say is that it has the potential to replace the warp core as we know it." It was the standard response that one would give when seeking resource allocation for the project, but it was all that Admiral Washington had signed off on being alright to talk about.

"And?" added Alenis, clearly demanding more information.

"That's all I'm allowed to say, Ma'am." Sera was terrified at the moment, and didn't know what to do.

Clearly unhappy with Sera's less than forthcoming response, . "Look at me, Lieutenant," she said, causing Sera's eyes to rise from the desk in front of her. "You're going to have to decide at some point whose side you are on, Shras' or the Portland's."

Sera, clearly startled, tried to keep the fear from showing. "Captain, the ship is safe and I will do everything to keep it that way."

Alenis let out an exasperated sigh as she rubbed her right temple. It was clear that she wasn't going to get any more information out of Sera than the tiny amount she had already provided. "Fine. If you don't have anything more to tell me, you are dismissed," she replied in a disapproving tone.

"Yes, Captain," Sera said as she stood. The engineer then made her way towards the door,which opened with the familiar whoosh. Before Sera stepped into the Bridge, she paused for a moment as though she were going to say something. Sera desperately wanted to tell her Captain about the whole experiement, or better yet give her the data itself. However, she couldn't. It was against orders from an Admiral. Sera stepped into the Bridge.
Capt. Alenis Meru
Commanding Officer
USS Portland

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Kahnr Dai
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Re: Mission Five: "Unto the Breach"

Mon Aug 10, 2015 8:38 pm

An Old Beauty
Bridge, USS Portland
MD -08
Authors: Kahnr Dai

Before he would officially report for duty, there was something he had to do. After he stepped down from the transporter pad, his feet had carried him here, to the Bridge. The late watch was quiet as he moved across the deck towards the CONN, and the pilot who was sitting there gave him a curious smile. Kahnr ran a hand along the top of the casing, his eyes wide.

"No worries, Ensign," he said. "I'm the new Flight Chief, just wanted to actually see this in person." Kahnr had only flown a Miranda-Class vessel on holodecks, and that only twice. They were getting so outdated now that the Academy barely used the ship in simulations anymore. Most of their training had been on more recent designs, like the Galaxy, Akira, Defiant, and Intrepid Class vessels, as well as the modern shuttlecraft. This was a real treat, he felt. Kahnr was fresh from the Academy, recently graduated with the latest class, and wanted to see the old beauty that was the Portland.

Of course he kept such thoughts to himself, as he didn't want to offend anyone who had been on her long. Of course the console displays and other controls were updated to match current configurations - though he wouldn't have minded working with the controls of a century ago - and besides the shape of the bridge there was little that made it obvious how long this ship had been in service. The Miranda Class vessels had possibly the longest history of service out of any ships in the fleet. They were such an effective work horse, explorer, border patrol, and strike ship, everything Starfleet might need wrapped up in one package. They were getting close to complete retirement, and Kahnr felt honoured to get the chance to pilot what might be one of the last of these amazing ships.

The ensign manning the CONN looked pointedly at Kahnr's own ensign pip, but made no comment. The Betazoid knew it might raise some eyebrows that some might have an issue with that. It wasn't often someone with no experience, green from the Academy, to be given a senior position like this, and so he was prepared for a bit of standoffishness. Fortunately, his fellow pilot made no actual comment about it, and instead asked, "Would you like to take a turn for a minute?"

Kahnr beamed, and gratefully nodded his head, "If it wouldn't be much trouble." He slid into the seat, his fingers touching the controls for the first time. He made a notation on the record of his taking over as protocol required, even if only for a moment. Then he took a look at their current status, which with being docked at Deep Space Nine meant there was actually nothing for the flight control to do. It was only protocol that demanded there be a pilot on duty at all times, in case they were needed. After that, he ran a quick level 5 diagnostic so he could see the systems themselves. Everything was running perfectly. The engineers and flight staff of the Portland evidently took as much pride in maintaining her as Kahnr had appreciation for this chance he'd been given. It was an opportunity he wanted to live up to, and though outwardly he might show only a relaxed demeanour that seemed like almost laziness, internally he was a bit overwhelmed.

The other pilot wasn't the only one with certain thoughts about having a fresh ensign taking over. Even Kahnr was aware of how much responsibility he'd been given. It was more than creating training schedules for his team - Kahnr had done that with the squadron he lead at the Academy. It was more than making sure they maintained flight control systems and shuttlecraft to exacting Starfleet standards - he'd gotten as greasy and as dirty as any engineer might at the Academy taking apart flight systems and putting them back together over and over again until his instructors decided to be merciful. Being an actual pilot of an actual vessel, that meant he was responsible for the lives of the crew too with his flying. It was a big weight to put on his shoulders, but Kahnr was hopeful that he'd pull it off and impress his superiors while doing so.

"Thank you, ensign," Kahnr said, putting aside learning his name just yet. He needed to report for duty still, and review the files for his department, the current duty logs and roster, the duty shift, and that was going to take some time. Kahnr would meet with each of his staff later. The Betazoid logged out of the system himself and gave it back to the man who was on duty, a bit wistfully.

There would be plenty of time to fly the Portland soon enough.
Ensign Kahnr Dai
Chief Flight Control Officer
USS Portland

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Tolaran Kian
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Re: Mission Five: "Unto the Breach"

Sun Aug 16, 2015 11:16 am

To: Gil Meriatha Korat, Starbase 173
From: Lieutenant JG Marcus Kallan, USS Portland

The Daystrom Institute emblem gave way to Marcus sitting in his quarters.

"Hello, Merry," Marcus began, forcing a closed-mouth smile. "Yes, I know, I'm wearing the wrong color. I got shanghaied into a bridge position after dealing with that hologram issue. No, I haven't concluded anything yet, but it's a fascinating hot mess of a holo-matrix, let me tell you."

He tugged at his turtleneck. "Look, I need you to do something for me. This is potentially bad, and Maddox will not approve, so just keep this between you and me, okay?" Marcus sighed, and glanced to the side off-camera as if expecting Security to burst in on him.

"I need you to look up a Starfleet Commander named Shras. Andorian. Works for Admiral Washington. And he's got some experimental technology aboard, and unfortunately our chief engineer is wrapped up with Do-Not-Discuss orders. I don't like what's going on and I don't like being kept in the dark."

He laughed dryly. "Heh, I said 'dark'. Anyway, I can't be specific because I don't want you to get in trouble. You're the closest thing I had to a friend aboard the starbase, and I don't want your exchange officer position to be jeopardized. You can use my old Daystrom Annex codes for the library data banks, they should still work."

Marcus fidgeted a bit. "Anyway, thanks ahead of time. I know saying this to a Cardassian is trouble, but I'll say it anyway: I owe you one."

"Computer, encrypt using methodology described as 'Kallan-Theta' in external holographic memory module currently connected to Holodeck One."

*** Meanwhile in Security ***

Tolaran had been reviewing training schedules and assignments with regards to the potential threat of Borg combat on the Portland when a small beep drew his attention away. He didn't trust Shras and had monitored all external communication channels and methods and someone had just triggered it...

As the details rolled over his screen he furiously tapped away trying to break the encryption to at least work out who had sent the message, if it had been a regular letter home there would be no need to circumnavigate the system but someone was trying to...

"Son of a..." Tolaran slammed his fist on the console, rather than catching Shras up to.something it was one of their own... tapping his comm badge... "Kian to Kallan... my" it wasn't a question or request,but a demand...

"Uh, acknowledged," came Marcus' response, sounding innocently surprised over the comms.

Marcus showed up to Security a few minutes later -- it wasn't a large ship, after all. Looking around for a moment, as he'd never been in Security, he spotted Tolaran's office. Walking up, he peeked his head around the transparent aluminum window. "You wanted to see me, Chief?"

Tolaran looked up, his face a mask as he tried to hide his disappointment and anger at someone attempting to circumnavigate his security protocols. "Yes Lieutenant, I think we need to talk don't you..." *motioning to the empty seat opposite him* "Would you care to explain why you have sent an encrypted message and why I shouldn't go to the Captain regarding this?"

"Because I'm a Federation citizen, and I have a right to privacy if I so choose," Marcus replied, sitting in the indicated seat. "Or is the problem that it's an encryption scheme that you don't recognize and you're worried I'm being subversive?"

"You're a Starfleet officer and you know protocol, so trying to send a message that evades such is definitely against the rules... if it was a standard message you wouldn't try and hide it, and I've been trying to catch out our guest but instead I have you..."

Snorting derisively, Marcus replied, "Lieutenant, as chief of operations, it's my duty to protect the ship's systems from undue stress, as well as know exactly how far she can be pushed. Let's just say that I'm conducting some... research... into what our guest may or may not be up to. And the less anyone else knows about it, the fewer court martials there will be." He leaned in a little. "How far are you willing to go to protect this ship, Tolaran?"

"Do you even have to ask!" Tolaran waved a hand dismissively of the comment "But Marcus, we don't know if Shras is monitoring communications too, I've got to prepare my teams for the Borg!!! We have to be careful, Meru will not look kindly on us for any subterfuge and endangering the mission. Next time you want to do this, just come see me, at least I can cover up the fact better, no offence." Tolaran leaned back in his chair, he didn't like what Marcus had done, but anything they could learn about the Andorian the better...

"I highly doubt he has the experience or the know-how to crack my encoding," Marcus declared arrogantly, almost sounding like Shras himself. Perhaps the best weapon against an arrogant scientist is to use another arrogant scientist. Then softer, "Look, we're on the same side. I don't trust that blue-skinned bastard any more than I could throw him. This whole mission hinges on his ability to deliver. And I don't mean to be fatalistic, Tolaran, but resistance is futile. The Borg are unrelenting monsters. The only reason why Starfleet hasn't released the tech Voyager brought back from the Delta Quadrant is because then the Borg would have a greater chance of assimilating it. It's a trump card, in case Earth is attacked again. So what do they give us? Crackpot theories and unpredictable dark energy." A pause. "What if Shras fails?"

"Oh he may not, but you can rest assured he probably has members of his team that are specialists... don't get cocky Marcus, thats how mistakes are made you know.." Tolaran sighed leaning back in his chair, looking deep in thought for a brief second before returning his gaze to Marcus "Also don't doubt my team, the Borg can be defeated, but they will adapt and then we'll be in trouble and my concern is more about making sure we survive this suicidal mission, not if Shras succeeds or not but I don't like the fact they are messing around with experimental technology on this ship! What is your plan Marcus, whats the end goal?

"The end goal is to know everything there is to know about his project, so that if he fails, or if something happens beyond his control, we don't go tits up," Marcus replies. "I may not be a theoretical physicist, but I can read and educate myself, whether he wants me to or not. And..." Marcus glanced over his shoulder to make sure no one was eavesdropping. "...and in case his theories are complete crap, I want to be able to give the Captain an informed opinion."

"You'll also have to explain you have been conducting your own secret investigation with encrypted messages... however, in the interest of ships security, do this and come to me with whatever you find out, and we'll run it as an official security check, the Captain can't argue too much if it's all done 'properly' and then brought to her attention. You may want to speak to Nikki in engineering, you may find her input useful in regards to Shras theories. Maybe try and start a few conversations with some of his engineers, maybe they will let something slip. You have a lot to learn about espionage Marcus" Tolaran winked at him, and added a locked log entry on the investigation so it was documented, that way the Captain would at least see it was an information gathering exercise in the interests of ships security.

"They're all under his command right now. Do you really think they'd risk their careers?" Marcus asked, meaning the engineering staff. "If there's one thing you need to combat an overbearing scientist, it's another overbearing scientist. Look, do what you have to with regards to the Captain... as I said, I've done nothing illegal, and if we all want to waste time getting involved in a debate as to whether Starfleet officers should be sending encrypted inquiries, then clearly we don't have the right priorities."

Marcus sighed. "I'm sorry, Tolaran. I don't mean to make more work for you. I just don't trust anyone playing with volatile subspace mechanics on such a grand scale as a starship. This had better work."

"A harmless conversation over synthohol never hurt anyone... and I'm not concerned about legality Marcus, I'm concerned about the repercussions of looking into an officer working covertly for Starfleet with experimental tech, therefore you." Tolaran stood up and walked around his desk, placing a hand on Marcus shoulder "If this doesn't work, we will have more to worry about than Shras."

Marcus nodded. "All right. My contact is at Starbase 173. Gil Meriatha Korat. She's a Cardassian exchange officer. If she responds, it will be with a similar encryption to what went out. And no, I'm not sharing the algorithm, although I'll share what she responds with. I was planning on going to the Captain, you know, once I learned anything." Marcus stood, and looked at the security officer. "I will let the senior staff know anything I find out. I'm just... still learning I have a support network, here. You wouldn't believe how cutthroat the scientific community can be." He managed a thin smile.

"What I know about the scientific community would probably surprise you Marcus... I come from Trill after all... fine, come to me as soon as you hear anything, then we'll see the Captain together, remember you are not alone on the Portland and everything will be fine." He gestured the Lieutenant out as his thoughts turned to his scientific training on Trill, he wasn't sure Biology would assist him too much and his parents hadn't really spoken to him much since he joined Starfleet... still, he was happy here, he was at home in the stars.
Lt. JG Tolaran Klan
Chief Security Officer
USS Portland

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Alenis Meru
Commanding Officer
Commanding Officer
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Re: Mission Five: "Unto the Breach"

Sun Aug 30, 2015 7:26 pm

Big Responsibilities
Captain's Ready Room, USS Portland
MD -08
Authors: Alenis Meru, Timothy Rouse, Kahnr Dai

The moment had finally come, and despite his casual and laid back attitude, even Kahnr had to admit that this was a little intimidating. He was reporting for duty for his very first assignment with the fleet now. It wasn't more than a month ago he'd been wrapped up in preparation for the graduation from Starfleet Academy. There'd been friends and family to invite to see his success there, instructors to visit to personally thank them for all they'd done. Uniforms to press, boots to shine, drills to perfect, and with it all the wonder of knowing how far he'd come in four years time. The Academy had molded him, shaped him, trained him harder than he'd ever thought possible, and he'd managed to keep his chin up and willpower going to make it through. It still seemed almost like a dream to him, that a boy from the vineyards and fields of the backwaters of Betazed, was now standing before his captain's door.

Kahnr reached out at tapped the chime to Captain Meru's ready room door. Or was that Captain Alenis? He tried to remember what he'd learned about Bajoran naming conventions and hoped he didn't screw up from the start. The young man thought he figured it out as he waited for a response.

"Look, Tim, I don't like him any more than you do, but--" Both the captain and the XO were exasperated. Shras had less than a half hour ago dropped off a PADD containing a series of requests -- demands, really -- and the two senior officers found themselves dealing with them.

"Can't we just throw him out an airlock or something?" asked Tim. After being on the receiving end about Shras' latest tirade about the inadequacy of his quarters and his demand to be moved, Tim was seriously considering relocating the Andorian and all his belongings to the vacuum of space.

"Unfortunately, we're under orders from your father-in-law, so my hands are tied," teased Alenis.

"Ha ha, very funny." It was at that moment that they were interrupted by the door chime.

"Come in!" called out Alenis. As the doors opened, the young ensign was greeted by three pairs of eyes -- Alenis, Tim, and Ko-ko, perching herself in her favourite spot, on top of Alenis' monitor.

Kahnr took a few steps into the room, gave a big smile to his superiors, and with a posture that was almost as far from attention as one could. His uniform was neat at least, boots polished to a gleam so nice that one might see themselves reflected on them if they got down to look. His voice was just as relaxed as the rest of him as he said, "Ensign Kahnr Dai, reporting for duty, ma'am. And sir. And whatever is sitting on top of your computer, Captain...what is that thing by the way?" The Betazoid was eyeing Ko-ko with more interest to her than to the two other people.

Tim winced at the Ensign's mention of Ko-ko. He had over the past several months managed to get used to the presence of Ko-ko, though he still found it strange that the captain insisted on taking the bird with her while on duty, and continued to be less than amused at her attempts to explain the presence of a large, brightly coloured bird wherever the captain went.

"This," replied Alenis, reaching up and petting the bird, "is Acting Ensign Ko-ko. She's our Chief Morale Officer." Ko-ko let out a soft, soothing coo, one whose relaxing tones filled the room. On her homeworld of Alamis IV, her species had originally evolved their complex vocal chords and calming birdcalls to dissuade predators and attract mates in the dense jungles. But, as Arvel's research had shown, they had proved to be loyal pets and useful in helping patients relax.

Alenis looked up at the ensign in front of her. By his age, uniform, and rank, she quickly deduced that he was the new Chief Flight Control Officer that Starfleet had sent her, fresh out of the academy. "And you must be Ensign Dai," she added.

The Betazoid continued studying the alien bird for a long moment, looking it right in the eye. "Strange, I can feel my morale lifted already." Eventually he turned his attention to the Bajoran and human before him. "Oh, right, sure," he started. "Ensign Dai, yeah. It's nice to meet'cha." He gave a lopsided grin. There was a wispy sort of goatee going on at the moment on the young man, who obviously couldn't grow a full beard to save his life. Perhaps it wasn't regulation, but there wasn't much regulation about his relaxed posture and somewhat lackadaisical manner as he reported for duty. There was all that protocol and stuff. "Sir," he added, belatedly.

"Likewise," replied Alenis, her eyes narrowing as she looked him up and down. The ensign was not like most officers fresh out of the academy. Usually, they were eager to please, perhaps even a little too eager as they would parade into her office as though they were a one-man drill team, their shoes freshly polished and their uniforms perfectly pressed. But this one, she could tell, was different.

Alenis didn't like it.

"Why don't you stand up straight and let us get a good look at you?" she asked in a tone that made it clear that it was not a request.

"Aye, Captain," Kahnr replied, and made a tiny bit of a show of it as he stretched upwards. He was quite tall, when he wasn't slouching at all, and big. He'd gone from young and unintimidating, perhaps even a bit lazy, to something else entirely. Perhaps part of his act was to not look threatening. "I have to say, I'm very pleased to be here. The chance to pilot the Portland is quite the honour."

"An honour it is indeed," Tim said. Not having read the bio of the newest addition to the ship jet he asked. "Is this your first posting?"

"Yes, Commander, this is my first posting," Kahnr said, this time with a real touch of pride. It wasn't so much pride in himself as it was for this opportunity. There was no doubt in Kahnr's mind. The Portland might be an older vessel, but she was also the single most successful class of ship Starfleet had ever built.

"Then if I may ask, how do you plan on being the Portland's Chief Helmsman without any prior flying experience?" He asked, knowing the question was a bit mean. Starfleet wouldn't have send him if he wasn't up for the job, but it was a fact the Ensign would need to be able to deal with, giving that most people in his department have more flying experience then he does.

"Sir, we logged hundreds of hours both in and out of the simulator," Kahnr explained, telling some of his Academy experience, sounding relaxed at the question. He'd expected it, of course. Starfleet giving him this position was a big deal, for them and for him, and he was going to face doubts from superiors and subordinates. Kahnr didn't see any reason to get overly excited about it though, like some painfully overdone ensigns were right out the Academy. "Besides simulator time, sir, I have flown fighters and shuttles, and two different cadet training ships from Earth to Andoria and back. I was also the leader of my Academy squadron for four years, and participated in the Rigel Cup. Respectfully, sir, I would not say I have no experience."

"Impressive, but this is your first real assignment," countered Alenis. His academy records were impressive, even if his deportment wasn't. But that was all just in the academy. Mostly holodeck exercises, with senior officers on hand in case he was in over his head. Out in space, they wouldn't have that luxury. Not to mention that flying the ship was only part of his responsibilities. As chief flight control officer, he would be responsible for managing an entire department, dealing with matters of training, crew development, and human resources. "As well as your first experience leading a department on a Starfleet vessel."

"Exactly, Captain," Kahnr agreed readily and with a nod. "I'm excited about finally getting a chance to put what I learned at the Academy to good use. About the Flight Control Department, sir, I look forward to that too. I understand, sir, that there might be hard feelings from some of my colleagues, at first. But that's also part of being in Starfleet. We might not always agree with their decisions, but we do follow orders. I'm certain that in little time we'll be running things smoothly, as a team. Everyone who's ever become a chief of a department was new at it till they weren't. I see this as the same."

Alenis stared him up and down. She didn't know what to think, but fortunately she had her best advisor at her side. "Ko-ko," she called out, snapping her fingers to get the bird's attention, "what do you think?"

Now that was odd. Was the captain truly asking an assumedly non-sentient life form for advice? Or was the more to this Ko-ko than immediately met the eye? More surprisingly, the bird flapped it's wings briefly and took flight to land on top of Kahnr's head. It was almost enough of a shock to finally crack the ensign's very laid back attitude. He schooled himself to patience and acceptance of this state, wondering also if this might be some sort of hazing ritual on the Portland. He didn't sense that in the projected emotions of his two superiors. His own mind was calm, and he let his projected emotions out just a tiny bit. Animals did have certain ways sensing things, after all.

Kahnr rolled his eyes upwards, though he could really see Ko-ko from there, could only feel her talons finding uncomfortable purchase in his hair. There was some sniffing of his scents, clean and not prettied up by some sort of cologne. Just Kahnr. After a moment, Ko-ko nipped playfully at one of his prominent ears that must have seen like a tempting target. That brought a smile to the Betazoid's face, along with a bit of a wince. "Will there be other wildlife I'll get to meet, Captain?" Kahnr asked, lifting a knuckle for something else to play with.

"Just little Novia's cat-monkeys," replied Alenis in a nonchalant tone. "Speaking of which, if you ever have to go into the Jeffries tubes, make sure you close the access port behind you. About two months ago someone forgot, and we had to send a security team in to extract Zinzac and Berelca."

Glancing up at Tim for a moment, Alenis could see that he had that look on his face. The one that he always had when Alenis was showing off Ko-ko or acting up in some way. While Alenis was by no means a lax CO, there were times when Tim just had to shake his head. Of course, whenever he gave that look, meant to dissuade Alenis from her current course of action, it tended to have the opposite effect. "I can see that Ko-ko likes you," added Alenis. "That's a good start."

Was grinning as Ko-ko nibbled eagerly at his knuckles, now rather enjoying this. "Cat-monkeys? Can't say I'm familiar with them. We had <i>salets</i> as pets on Betazed. There sorta like...well...they are small and fuzzy I guess, great fun if you don't mind the constant shredding." The ensign lowered his hand, clasped them both behind him at the small of his back. He met the gaze of the XO first, his grin still big, and then his CO's. "I'm really looking forward to this, sirs, and I'll do what I can to impress."

With a snap of her fingers, Alenis got Ko-ko's attention. The captain let out a smile as Ko-ko returned to her, perching on her arm. "See that you do, Ensign, to be granted a Chief position right out of the academy, even on an older ship, is a huge honour." With her other hand, Alenis slid a PADD across her desk. "Here is your welcome package. Orders, room assignments, personnel files of your subordinates, it's all there. Welcome aboard, Ensign."

The Betazoid gave the older officer a lazy smile as he reached down and took the PADD, "Thank you, Captain. I'm sure we're going to have a lot of fun together." Just wait till they saw his piloting!
Capt. Alenis Meru
Commanding Officer
USS Portland

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