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Ready, Aim...

Posted on Wed Jul 17th, 2013 @ 5:07am by Lieutenant Commander Soraya Delrisa & Lieutenant Colonel Wolfric Bannister

Mission: Part of the Team
Location: Holodeck Phaser Range
Timeline: Current

"Fifth set, fire when ready Doctor," the computer said.

How about next week? Soraya thought. She gripped the phaser rifle and took aim as the targets began to appear. The program increased the difficulty gradually as the shooter gained skill, but the doctor was so rusty she had not progressed beyond still targets.

She fired at the round blobs, caught four and missed five. She did a little better when the squares came up but then they were slightly larger. Several ovoid shapes were next, and astonishingly she hit five out of six.

"Well done, Doctor. You are progressing." The lights had come up and the computer-generated instructor had appeared.

"I'll believe that when I recertify," she said wryly. She had put the weapon down and stretched her arms and fingers.

"Practice makes perfect, you have not used this program in thirteen months and six days," he chided primly. "We will commence in ten minutes, so that you may refresh yourself."

She reached for her water bottle, then began a few calf stretches.

Wolfric stopped short as the doors to the shooting range opened and he saw Soraya. He'd changed into uniform after he finished his tour and returned to his quarters. He had barely gotten through the door when the computer notified him of a message, and the message was an order from his superiors in the marshal's service to do the certification testing for the 2F hand phaser as well as his carbine.

He immediately looked sheepish and said, "Sorry. Most ranges will at least issue a warning on approach that the range is in use if not lock the door. Apparently the station hasn't had it's manners updated from when the Cardassian's built the place. I could come back another time....."

The doctor straightened and smiled when Wolfric walked in. "You needn't apologize Commander, I'm just practicing for my upcoming recert. Sometimes I think I'm wasting the computer's time," she added.

"Doctor Delrisa, your recertification is due in two weeks' time. It is very important that you practice at least once per day and at least once per month after you recertify. This program exists to allow you to......" the instructor began.

"Yes, yes I know, practice makes perfect," Soraya said quickly. The computer-generated man looked at her haughtily then promptly disappeared.

Wolf looked bemusedly at where the holographic person had just stood, "Wow. I thought the New Mexico's training system had that kind of personality. Nice to know the fleet programmers are consistent anyhow."

He shook his head before tilting his head a little, "May I join you?"

Soraya swept her arm in invitation and smiled. "As long as you don't want to wager, Commander," she said. "Also I'd appreciate it if you wouldn't laugh."

Wolf gave her a wry smile, "No wagers needed, I would say. And I'll do my best not to laugh." He tilted his head and said, "Computer, add additional shooter. Identify 2nd shooter: Bannister, Wolfric G. Rank: Commander. Assignment; United Federation of Planets Marshal Service, DS12."

The instructor reappeared in front of Wolfric.

"Added. My records indicate that you may begin on Level 8 or higher. Doctor Delrisa is currently on Level 3. What level would you like?" the computer asked.

Soraya groaned. The instructor turned to her and started to speak but she cut him off again.

"Spare me the pep talk," she said, shaking her head. "I'm ready to start again," she added, picking up the phaser rifle.

"Computer, remain 1 person shooter for now;" Wolf said. He watched Soraya for a moment, "Move your hand a bit farther forward on the stock. Just a bit. There you go. Try it that way." She moved her left hand as he indicated and he nodded. "Computer, begin."

She stood still with the rifle raised as the lights dimmed.

"First set, fire when ready Doctor," the computer said.

Soraya shot at the still targets, hitting 5 out of six. The same targets reappeared, now moving horizontally; her timing was slightly off as she hit four of the six.

Wolf smiled lightly as he walked closer to her, "Good. Very good. That was a fine percentage considering you do not shoot much."

The Marshal stopped next to the doctor and asked, "How do you learn best? Hands on, verbal, visual or combination?"

"Hands-on, I learn best by doing," she answered.

"Okay, if you don't mind I will demonstrate something and we can do the hands on after. That sound reasonable, Doc?" he said with a slight smile.

"Of course," she said. He held out his hands and she gently gave him the weapon.

"Computer, new shooter. Same level. Start on my mark," he said

"First set, fire when ready Commander."

The Marshal's eyes narrowed as he stood ready with the rifle. Within seconds the lights presented themselves in turn, allowing him to smoothly take out the lights. The horizontal lights fell as easily as the first set. "Computer, hold."

The targets froze and the lights brightened to 35 percent.

He smiled at Soraya and offered her the weapon, "Did you see what I did differently?"

"Not quite," she answered.

"Okay," he said, "Go ahead and get into firing stance." The computer's beep prompted him to say, "Hold program." The computer chirped again.

The former Marine looked over the doctors' stance in a professionally anylitical manor. "Stand more on the balls of your feet. It feels odd at first, but it allows you to pivot and turn a bit faster on the moving targets. Also, try to lead them a bare minimum. They can be clever and that can help again with accuracy and speed. Likely heard a thousand times before but big breath as you're lining up the shot, hold through the shooting, exhale after."

With a sympathetic smile he asked, "Think you can manage all that?"

Soraya felt awkward in her stance but held it. "I'll give it a go," she said, trying to sound confident. "Computer, begin."

"Second set, fire when ready Doctor."

She took a deep breath as the targets appeared, still relatively large but now moving in two dimensions. She was better at hitting them as they moved horizontally, the vertically moving targets were a problem. She wondered briefly if she needed her vision rechecked.

The lights brightened slightly. "You are improving Doctor, your accuracy rate was sixty-seven percent. You are hesitating when firing in the Y plane," the computer said. The instructor appeared along with a cabinet of weapons. "Would you like to try a different rifle? There is a smaller version of the phaser rifle you are using now," he added.

Soraya looked uncertainly at the rifle in her hands, "I don't know, would that help?" she asked, looking at Wolfric.

Wolfric gently arched an eyebrow, "It may. A different size may be more comfortable for you. Different weapons can better suit different people., much like anything else."

Soraya exchanged her rifle for the smaller version and tried the set again. The smaller weapon did feel easier to use; less bulky and lighter.

"Accuracy rate seventy-two percent. You are having difficulty tracking targets in the Y plane but you have improved." the instructor said. "I would recommend that your eyes' pursuit movements be examined Doctor." She nodded; the program was tracking her eye movements, she would have her vision tested.

"Commander, do you wish to chose a weapon?" the instructor asked. He had reappeared with a larger cabinet that included things Soraya had never seen before.

"Negative," Wolf replied as he unslung the carbine off of his shoulder. He checked the power gauge before sliding the charge, before bringing it ready. He added with a new but soft intensity in his voice, "Ready for targets."

"First set, fire when ready Commander."

Bannister moved with machine like precision as he took out the targets. When the targets stopped appearing, Bannister shouldered his weapon. He said to the air, "Report score."

"Accuracy rate one hundred percent. Would you like to move to Level Eight?" the instructor asked politely.

"Is that your personal weapon?" Soraya asked.

Wolf smiled a little sheepishly and nodded, "A lot of my time has been chasing criminals and on investigations since I joined the marshal service. Out in the field, I don't often get to access a ship or station armory. Because of this, the Federation Marshal Service issued me a few to take with me as needed. I also have a few non standard that I replicated. They've come in handy once or twice."

She moved closer to look at the unfamiliar weapon, then reached out tentatively. "May I try it?" she asked.

Wolf smiled and said, "I guess I can trust you with it," before offering a wink. He then unshouldered the carbine again and presented it to the doctor profile-wise, one hand toward the stock with the other toward the "muzzle".

The weapon was heavy. Soraya held it uncertainly.

Bannister smiled a bit and stepped closer, gesturing to the weapon she held and said softly, "May I assist?" She held it up to him.

"Actually, bring it in closer to you. I'll walk you through it, if you're willing," he said with an encouraging smile. She held it closer. Wolf nodded and said, "Better. Now try aiming." She aimed the carbine at an imaginary target.

"Do you wish to proceed, Doctor?" the instructor asked.

"Still targets only, please," she answered, and the target appeared. She fired five rounds, hitting two out of three.

After observing a bit Wolfric said, "Not bad. Bring it up a bit and tighten your arm a bit closer to your body."

As he spoke, he unconsciously slipped his left arm behind her back as he used his right to help guide her movements with the carbine. After a moment, he did become conscious of the closeness. He also noticed that the good doctor smelled wonderful. Wolfric trudged on with his professional cover despite the distraction, hoping it did not show. With the Marshall guiding her she fired again, hitting five out of five. She looked up and rewarded him with a huge grin.

"Can you show me how to do that with the phaser rifle?" she asked.

Wolf nodded, "I should be able to manage that. Computer: Gun rack for my carbine, please."

Once it appeared, the Marshal placed his carbine upon the rack and went over to the range's selection of weapons. He picked the appropriate item and casually shouldered it before sauntering back to the doctor. As he approached, he tilted his head a little and his gaze met hers. The ghost of a smile touched his lips after a heartbeat as an expression that one of his oldest friends liked to use tickled his consciousness from his unconsciousness. It whispered to him in his mind, "I could get used to this....."


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