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Switching Tide

Posted on Tue Mar 2nd, 2010 @ 10:50am by Commander Lorran Vos & Fleet Admiral Tal Navek & Lieutenant Commander Jack Daniels & Lieutenant Thomas Jenkins

Mission: Human Nature. Season 1; Episode 6

The constant flow of combat had been difficult on all, but not as much as those left behind on the station. They had endured more than anyone should have to endure in a lifetime, and with the death of Captain Crawford had also hit the crew hard. She had bent over backwards to save the officers, men and women left with her during the Occupation of the station. It had all happened so fast, and from what Mason had told her, she had saved the Lieutenant's life in an act of sacrifice.

Beverly was sat in the Wardroom, heading the table with a tall, stoic looking, beard sporting man sat next to her. They were chatting quietly waiting for the arrival of the officers she had requested attend. She had to brief them on the state of play as it stands on 611 now. It was going to be a rough ride for them, but things needed to be fixed and sharpish.

Zeek looked less like the lively ladies man who first arrived on 611, and more like a war veteran as he trudged into the room. The battle in Cestus left Zeek with a nice parting gift, courtesy of the Gorn he fought. In retrospect, fighting that Gorn hand to hand may not have been the smartest move, but now he had a cool new cybernetic left arm to play with. He was just lucky the Doc was able to fix it in time. His arm was still in a sling as he took his seat near the head of the table. He nodded at Beverly and the new fellow she was talking to. Zeek had never seen him before, but a strange feeling came up that he would indeed be seeing more of him in the future.

Having ensured Lieutenant Tarke was recovering Krissy slowly passed through operations giving the room as she had to a large portion of the station, long sorry, sad looks at the disarray of their home. Still flanking her every step was over seen by the two faceless officers that made her up guard but was thankfully able to leave them outside the Wardroom.

Expelling a sigh she crossed silently into the meeting room her roaming eyes instantly picking out the familiar faces of Beverly, Zeek and Jason who's composure for now it seemed was holding and took her seat.

Jason for his part retained his Command composure as best he could, which was a feat of immense magnitude. The short haired blond women now crossing the wardroom, now the living embodiment of his dead future was someone who he had little to no interest in, even if his late fiancée had show an interest in helping this women develop into an exceptional office. He had no doubt that he would have to set aside his anger, but at the moment the wound was still too raw.

Avo and Aio entered the room together, acting as much like twins as anyone could. The same blank, sad expression, bruises and cuts in similar places from their own separate battles, and now Avo was mourning the loss of a lover.

Aio sat down next to Avo and had tried to cheer her up constantly the night before but to no avail. Avo dried a single tear from her eye and tried to look strong even though the red halo of recent crying and tears still surrounded her eyes.

Aio sat back in her chair and looked away from her sister. Commodore DuVour sat at the head of the table and Aio nodded to her as if to say something. Captain Crawford had saved her life, and to go down in glorious battle was all they could have hopped for. Atleast she was in a better place now...

Lieutenant Jenkins entered the room with only half of his usual swagger. They had won the battle and saved many lives, and he had truly felt at home during combat - but many lives had been lost. As he took his seat he caught eye contact with Beverly at the head of the table, and his mind flashed back to the bridge on the Genesis. During the first battle their tactical officer had been injured, and Tom had taken the tactical post behind the command seats. That's where he was when the Gorn beamed aboard, tearing through bridge crew while weapons fire filled the room. He'd managed to fire at one towards the back of the bridge, but it came for him and knocked his weapon from his hand before another officer finished it off. It was then that Tom had heard Zeek's scream, turning to see the Commander's arm torn from his body. As the Gorn turned from the Acting Executive Officer and moved towards Beverly, Tom had jumped the barrier in front of his console in a blind rage and tackled the Gorn to the ground.

Although Tom maintained all of his original limbs, before being fired upon by another crew member the Gorn had come across his left side and all but tore it away during the skirmish on the bridge floor. He was fine now, save for a massive three-clawed scar across the majority of his left side, but remembering the look on Beverly's face tore him apart even more. As he remembered the anguish in her eyes as the last of the Gorn went down, while she held him in her arms, watching him all but choke on his own blood, clutching his sides; literally trying to hold himself together.. he snapped back into reality, breaking eye contact with Beverly and looking down at the table while he instinctively held his side. If it weren't for the Hope and Doctor Ulonova's crew, Beverly would have lost him - just like she'd been afraid. Focusing back on the meeting, he shrugged off the memories and quietly waited for it to begin.

Commander Lorran seemed much the same as he had before, but then he had probably seen more war than anyone in that room save for Ambassador Haqtaj and possibly a few others. He was either really good at putting up a calm facade or else his nerves had been deadened some to the horrors of war. He walked tall and straight, favoring the others that looked the worst out of those assembled with bolstering smiles and kind words.

Of everyone in the room it was only the Klingon Ambassador Haqtaj that seemed to have grown from the battle. She and Vartog had stood at the door to the civilian shelter and held wave after wave of Gorn at bay. It may have been that their act was the reson so many civilians were still alive today. Her blood was hot and she was swelled with the Glory and Honour of battle. However she knew this was not how the Humans were feeling and in deference to them she had cleaned and washed and wore dress robes with minimal amour.

Across the table Krissy seethed silently narrowing her eyes with displeasure at Haqtaj

Livia entered the room with a different stance then most of the 611 crew had seen before. The metaphorical weight that was on her shoulders was lifted, and she seemed to walk with more purpose and pride now that she was no longer in uniform. Those who served with her would still see the General in certain aspects of her speech and attitude, but her new role as Ambassador of the Federation in this region of space gave her what some would describe as a peaceful aura. She smiled at Beverly and Zeek in turn as she took her seat across the table from her Klingon counterpart.

Unlike most of the crew, Livia spent that battle with the Gorn on the sidelines, sitting in a court room while a group of flag officer dissected her career. Intergalactic relations were nothing when compared to Starfleet politics. That was one game Livia was glad she no longer had to play.

Beverly watched as Livia crossed the room, looking more comfortable in herself than she had ever appeared in the Green Starfleet Uniform. Although it would take her a long to time adapt to not calling her General. If anything, that would probably become a nickname for her.
She smiled at the Ambassador and marveled at the womens ability to survive.

Carefully looking around the room at everyone Leanne walked in, quiet, and guarded against everything. Her hair hung down in front of her face and helped to hide some of the shock she was still feeling over the entire event. Everything was still a blur, and she still had several hundred people to look after back on the hope and here on the starbase. Sitting down in one of the chairs in the middle of the room, she laid her head down on the table and closed her eyes, waiting for the meeting to start.

Seraphina stood in the edge of the room, not knowing how a lowly crewman would fit into the silent atmosphere.
In her hand she held a PADD, another report, though now it had no reciver...

Daniels finally limped into the briefing room, dispite the excellent treatment surplied by the medical staff Jack had a natural urge to escape confinement. Something that recent events had brought back with a vengance, so after getting only the most nacerssary treatment he'd quickly made his escape.

Looking around at the gathered officers he saw every range of human emotion on display, opting to keep a suitable distance from the following events but still wanting an easily reached exit he grabbed a seat close to the end of the table.

It seemed she was the last to enter the room. She had tried to make it on time and hated being late. Just as she had left she felt a hand on her arm. She looked at the young woman before her. Her eyes were imploring her to stay. "There goes being early" she thought to herself. Thankfully it was a simple matter and Eloise was soon on her way.

Entering the room, she looked around at the sea of unfamiliar faces. One day she would get all the names to the faces correct but it was probably not today. Nervously she wondered what was going on. This was all new to her. Normally someone higher ranked than her would be sitting at the table but since the Chief and the assistant counsellors were not replaced as yet and she had the most free time, Eloise had found herself nominated for the job.

Now they were all gathered, Beverly took in the sight before her. Everyone barring Captain Crawford had made it back in more or less one piece, and that was a definite weight from her shoulders lifted. Now she realised that the aftermath would be far more challenging, and each person in this room would have a mountain to climb to overcome whatever scarring had taken place, but it physical or mental.

She rubbed the bridge of her nose, allowing the fatigue to finally show on her features. It had been hard on everyone, but she had been trying to hide the fact. Now seeing all in the room... Did it really matter?
"Lets get started. Damage reports from each section".

Haqtaj tried hard not to laugh. Here they were, victors in a glorious battle, and they are woried about broken doors. She decided to start, "The civilian population is divided. Many are packing up and getting out while they can. The Borg, then some internal security issue, and now the Gorn... they feel the climate is too unstable."

Mason scowled across the table.

"However, our Ferengi friend has managed to convince many of the business men of the 34th Rule of Acquisition; War is good for business. I believe the prominade will still bewell populated, but don't be surprised if prices go up, or they come demanding cheaper rent, blah, blah blah."

"On the up side, news of the constant fighting has filtered back to the Homeworld and many Klingons are showing a growing interest in your station. You may wish to consider allowing Klingon merchants to bolster your civilian population. As well as increasing productivity it will give you a much stronger defence base. But I will discuss it with..."

She glanced around. DeVour's transfered, Crawford's dead. Who was in charge now? Please let it not be Mason.

"The station took some decent damage, but shes still standing" Zeek said, remembering the mound of reports that were once again piled on his desk "It'll be a while before we have shields online again, but everything else should be fixed within a week or so. I wish I could say our support vessels fared better, but most of us know how that went..." He said, trialing off.

When it was Eloise's turn to report she found herself very dry mouthed and wished she really wasnt there. "Im sorry, there isn't a lot I can tell you about the state of mind of the crew, since Im very new here. From the few I crew members I have met with most seem to be coping to the best of their abilities. "

There wasn't much she could say. Most of the overall reports had been late or not turned in at all. It was a real shambles. Until there was someone in charge of the department, it seemed to her a mess with everyone working alone and not as a team. She hated going to the meeting with no much to report, she felt that she had been shoved in the deep end indeed with little chance of survival.

"Doctor Star isn't it?" Beverly waited for the nod from the women confirming her name. "I hate to impose, but since we have no direct chain of command in your department at the moment, could I ask you to hold all the pieces together. More than ever this crew needs a cohesive Councelor's team supporting them. I know its a lot to ask, and for that I do apologise".

A look of surprise must have gone her face, this was the last thing she expected especially after being so unprepared for the meeting. "Yes it is Ma'am, if this is what you want done, I will endevour to do my best. I just hope I wont be stepping on anyones toes."

Eloise figured there was no point in stating the obvious that there were others more qualified, more experienced and had spent more time on this ship. CO's didnt get to be where they were without knowing what they were doing. Others obviously trusted her decision and until she knew differently she would too.

"Any other reports to be heard?", Beverly asked of the room at large.

"Medical is overworked and understaffed, the amount of casualties as well as the range of injuries we have are currently overwhelming, I can't synthesize plasma and tissue fast enough to keep up with my patients, I feel like I'm working in the dark ages and that most of my patients are going to die of infection and disease." Leanne picked her head up from the table and looked around. There was a sort of deadness in her eyes. "I've got the chief running around as a nurse as we speak."

"I trust that the relevant departments can lend aid were needed?"

Vos spoke up at that. "Yes, ma'am. As the officer in charge of duty assignments, I've made a few changes for the foreseeable future. Personnel with even the bare minimum of medical training are being reassigned to help the medical teams. Civilians and other personnel without medical training are being rounded up to donate blood and plasma to help fill our reserves and lighten the price in energy on the medical replicator systems. I've also assigned an extra shift here and there to those that I feel can handle the extra workload. So I apologize ahead of time if any of you end up getting shanghaied into working as a nurse for a few hours. You'll be doing a lot of good."

After listening to everything that the senior officers had said, one thing was missing. This was were Beverly had hoped that Captain Crawford's Yeoman would make a mark against the commanding and senior officers of the station. War was one thing, but neglecting the crew after something as to which they had all just lived through was something again entirely different.
"Crewman...", she looked down the table to see the mouse like visage of a young women, still standing in a corner looking perplex as to her role at this meeting. "Crewman...", Beverly scrambled for a name but it had escaped her.

"Seraphina Stryder, Ma`am" She replied, though he voice was hoarse. Civilians in a war zone don`t tend to be quiet.

"Crewman Stryder... Please take a seat", she indicated the free chair at the opposite end of the table. "I wanted you here so you could report to the crews state. How are they? Your closer to them than we are as senior officers".
All eyes in the room turned to the young women.

Seraphina could feel the eyes looking at her as she gently sat down. Nervously she opened the tight turtleneck of uniform.
"The state of the enlisted crew is a mess." She tried to sounds as profesional as she could, but it was hard. She did not belong among these officer.
"The experienced ones took it pretty allright, I think... But this station is filled with crew who has just arrived at this station a week ago, you can just imagen how they feel. Its... not good. Ma`am"

Beverly assessed the information, letting it filter through and all the myriad of possibilities could form in her mind. None of the were good as with any tired or traumatized crew.
"Doctor Star... Can I assign you to get the Psychology and Counseling teams to deal with the crew as a priority. Sorry Leanne", Beverly held up a hand to stop the doctor from protesting. The Commodore knew that Leanne would have been making use of those officers in treating the physical injuries, but every Commanding Officer knew that psychological injuries could take even longer to heal. "We need them dealing with the crew as they should. I'll contact Starfleet and see if they can't send in some relief medical staff".

Without getting a chance to agree Eloise simply nodded in agreement and wondered if she was going to up to this challenge.

"Thank you Crewman Stryder you are dismissed now!" Again Beverly smiled at the young women and watched her leave. She understood that the women may have been uncomfortable, but needs must under such difficult circumstances.
"Next. Ambassador Harrison and Matlh. Since the station is in such a bad way at present, would you contact your respective governments and request military cover until we can repair all the damaged systems. I have put in a request with Starfleet, but they are pressed with the ongoing war. If we can get some diplomatic pressure on them, they may cave that little bit sooner."

"Ive got some old strings I might be able to pull" Livia replied "I'll get in touch with Admiral Baker, see if he can't do anything about it."

Haqtaj seemed genuinely surprised to be asked, "Of course, Commodore. I will contact them as soon as the meeting is over. Even if we cannot spare any of the Imperial Navy, I know there are a few lesser houses who woul love the opportunity to make a good impression on House Matlh and the Federation. I thank you for the opportunity."

"Is there any other business before I cover the current JAG situation on the station?"
Beverly's eyes for a second fluttered over to Mason, who had remained relatively quite throughout the meeting, which in and of itself was worrying. The pending trial must have been affecting her more than she would ave admitted.

Krissy gaze seemed to slip out of focus during the meeting resting instead upon the desk. Her shoulders sagged at Beverly's word in the knowledge that she would not be present to fight Krissy's corner when she needed it the most.

Zeek spoke up "Over the next few days, we'll be working on deploying a new type of defense platform. Its only in phase one testing so we won't be integrating it into the defense system just yet. I'd like to ask everyone not to interfere with these platforms, and contact my department if you notice anything unusual."

Haqtaj flashed a look at the man, "You will furnish me with details about these new defences, I trust? If my people are to place their lives on the line defending this station, I would hate for one to 'accidentally' become caught by friendly fire."

Zeek frowned "Details on ongoing projects are classified. That being said in the interests of diplomatic relations I'll have one of my people send your office a VERY basic brief on what they are expected to do, but that's about the extent of the information you'll get until Starfleet has fully approved the design. If I were you, I'd suggest that your gunners watch their aim, the turrets are programmed to return fire when fired upon. Last thing we need is another...misunderstanding." The venom in Zeek's voice was as clear as could be. He didn't mind Klingons in general, but the fact that this Ambassador was prying into his project was unsettling to say the least.

Haqtaj nodded accepting the compramise.

=/=Jrez to Captain Crawford.=/= No reply. He tried again. Still no reply. He was about to give it another go – third time lucky, and all that – when a memory surface in his sleep deprived mind. Captain Crawford was dead. One of the injured grunts had told him.

=/=Jrez to....=/= Who was in charge now? He racked his brain but it wouldn’t come to him. He knocked the side of his head to try and get some sense into it but, of course, it didn’t help. He took a large mouthful of raktajino and almost gagged on the scalding liquid. Despite ordering it extra strong it was losing its potency but the act of coughing loosened something in his memory. =/=Jrez to Commander DeVuor.=/=

Beverly tapped her badge, not appreciating the interruption from the staff meeting. She had a lot of ground to cover and not very much time to do it in.
"Yes chief go ahead", the irritation in her voice plain.

=/=I realise this might not be the best moment but...umm...I was talking to Captain Crawford before we set out on this mission and.... Something has been bothering me....=/= He knew he was rambling but he was finding it hard to focus on what he wanted to say.

"Chief we are in the middle of a meeting, could this wait until later?", the irritation in her voice growing.

=/=Sorry, sir. It’s just that....=/= He drew a deep breath. =/=When Captain Kirk faced the Gorn following the destruction of a Federation observation post on Cestus III, the Metrons intervened and forced a resolution on both parties.=/= Now that he’d gotten going, he found continuing much easier. =/=I’ve been wondering why they didn’t intervene this time around. I think I might know the answer. If you look at the logs from the DS9 fighter, the Defiant, you’ll find a short entry about a lone Gorn fighter which appeared to have launched an unprovoked attack on the USS Amhurst. As I remember, the logs are annoyingly short on detail but they refer to the Metrons suffering from some sort of...virus...something about a temporal instability....=/= He was in danger of rambling again. He took another deep breath. =/=What it comes down to is that they were dying out. What I’m trying to say is that maybe they didn’t intervene because they were incapable or they no longer exist to be able to do so.=/=

There, it was said now. With that off his mind, maybe he could concentrate on what he was meant to be doing.

What the Chief was talking about did ring a bell in her mind, and it was true, back in Kirks time the Metrons did interfere with a confrontation between the Federation and the Gorn.
"Thank you Chief. DeVuor out!", it was something that she would look into upon arriving at her new posting. "Any Other reports to be made before we move on?"

Once again she cast her eyes over to Krissy, not wanting to air this news, but it had to be done.
"As you have all probably heard Lieutenant Mason has been brought up on charges and the JAG will be investigating. It is my understanding that the trial will take place on the station with full coverage by the FNS and our very own Mister Cardel will be overseeing that. Until this situation is resolved I have assigned Lieutenant Tarke to manage the Security teams. It grieves me to have to do this Krissy but you are officially relieved of duty pending the trial".
Beverly fought back tears never having wanted this duty. "Wheels are in motion and the Brass are sending in a high ranking officer to judge the case on merits and I believe that Ambassador Harrison has agreed to act of Defence. I trust you will all lend your aid in supporting her through this ordeal", Beverly's steel like gaze fell to the Klingon Ambassador. "All of us! Any questions?"

Haqtaj face betrayed nothing but she glanced at Cardel.

Krissy remained still feeling as if her tiny world was imploding upon itself destined to crash and burn on a one way trip.

"Very well, now thats out of the way, I must announce my departure. HQ have assigned me to the USS Hector. I will be leaving the station shortly which brings me onto the next subject. The station recently has become a very valuable commodity to Starfleet with its position in the sector. That said I must apologise to Commander Lorran. It should have been him that now took Command of the station. Starfleet thinks differently. They want a flag officer present on the station so Commodore Jason Quinn has been assigned your new Commanding Officer. I'm sure given a few days you will all have meetings with him".

This was Mason feared. Crawford was dead, Beverly off to God knows where virtually ripping the heart and soul out of the station replacing them instead with a man will very much in the grips of grief and who she doubted would fight to save of the Station's longest standing officers.
Expelling a sigh Krissy left very much alone even in this crowded room.

Commander Lorran smiled diplomatically. "I have enough on my plate as it is, Commodore. I'd welcome any help and direction Commodore Quinn can provide. Besides, I'm not an old man yet. My time will come and I'm not in any hurry. Now's not the time to be overly ambitious anyway, with the station in the condition it's in."

Jason smiled at the collection of bedraggled Officers and prim Ambassadors. It still seemed odd to him that he would be leaving the Ticonderoga behind and taking up a desk job.
Before anything else could happen or be said Commodore DeVuor once again cut across the room, "If there is nothing more your dismissed!"

END

 

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