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Star Trek: Season 11 Episode 1

Started by X, January 05, 2010, 07:36:09 AM

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X

Joint post by Chris, Meds, and Jen

"Senator Navesh is dead," said Doctor Drett in a voice that echoed faintly in the now silent ballroom.

"Seal off the station," Oryn ordered to the centurion guards. "Everyone that's currently docked will remain docked until the completion of the investigation. Make sure they're comfortable, but don't go anywhere."

"Yes sir," One of the guards replied as he snapped to attention, offering Oryn a salute before rushing out of the room to implement the orders.

Oryn's eyes drifted around the ballroom. The killer might be currently among them, but his own exchange with the senator would surely cast suspicions his way. On the eve of his elevation, he needed to make sure that the people did not doubt him—a neutral party would have to investigate the murder. "Captain Sevryll, there may be a conflict with my moving this investigation forward, we require a neutral party to lead an investigation. If it's not an imposition, would you take that burden and get to the bottom of this?"

Sevryll, clad in a high-collared white dress uniform, arched a single brow, clasped her hands behind her back and nodded slightly to Oryn "Of course, Emperor," came her smooth, self possessed alto, "Yet, in the interest of cooperation and good faith, I would recommend that our team be made up of both Romulans and Federation officers.


"Yes. I think this is a good chance to show how well the Federation and the Empire can work together on a common task." Oryn replied.


--------------------

Captain's log Stardate 2387.59
It has been three days since Navesh was killed and Sevryll's duties as Fleet Captain required her to move her command to the station and put me in the chair that I worked so hard to avoid. Her logic was as sound as ever and it was the right decision. She can do more for the fleet from a central location and if she did not need to focus on captaining the Arabella. It was a decision that also included promoting K'Tan to the role of Strategic Operations Officer. Although he will still be a member of the crew, he will also have duties to the fleet and the station. Sevryll could not have picked a better person for the job.

My promotion to the big chair has been a smooth transition, but not a uncomplicated one. This ship has several key positions that will need to be filled and I'll need to make the necessary crew adjustments to get the Arabella into something that is more inline with my style of leadership. Transfers between here, the fleet, and the station has transformed the landscape of the crew and several departments. While it's nice to have new faces, many of the old ones will be missed.

Progress is being made in the investigation, but with a suspect list as long as my arm, I'm glad that I'm not involved. However, with several of my officers involved in the case, I doubt we will be leaving any time soon.

Time is a good thing. I don't want to rush in rebuilding the command staff, but I also need the time to see the children off to their first few days of class on the station. It's for the best that they stay there and are around others their age. Hopefully Sevryll's team will get to the bottom of this mess and we can get on with the reason why we're out here.


"Enter," Aeric said from the chair of his ready room. Many of his wife's personal items had already made their way to her larger office on the station and he had yet to give the now barren room his own touch. His family's move hadn't helped, but there were other reasons. Aeric was in meetings with other captains in the fleet or the command staff of the station...he was a busy man. Without a First Officer, he also found himself balancing his former duties with his current role as the captain of the ship. Were it not for K'Tan continued presence on the ship, he might have needed to add the duties of operations to that list, but Mr. K'Tan had no issues working the two positions for the time being.


Pressing the door chime Joseph D'Callan walked in after hearing the acknowledgement. "Sir, I've had full reports from Ensign Burns and Ensign Daelen. I intend to talk with them after this meeting"

Handing over his full report on his PADD he sat down to await Aeric's reaction.

Aeric put the PADD down and looked at Joseph, "This doesn't make us look good."


"It points out areas we need to work on both on the ship and the station sir."


"We're supposed to be professionals, there shouldn't be areas that we need to work on." the new captain added as he reviewed the contents of the PADD. "I don't  like my people being implicated in any of this Joseph. Is there evidence?"


Leaning back Joseph frowned "According to Station security, yes. The official report is to follow but i used a bit of persuasion to get this before it became official. "


"I know that you are on loan to Sevryll's investigation team, but we also need to get our house in order. When you are not working on that duty, you need to sort out your security personal. We need to make sure that this doesn't happen again. I'll leave the resolution of the breach in your hands. I want a report on my desk by 0600 hours tomorrow on what you plan to do. Joe, don't let something else to come up and attack our flanks. Dismissed."


Joseph stood not taking his eyes off the new Captain and his godfather. Nodding he turned and left the room thinking about his next move.

Commander James stood slowly and stretched when the door closed. The flag ship of the fleet had a security breach that may or may not have led to an assassination. Thankfully, his wife had not chosen to involved him personally with the responsibility of investigation. This freedom had allowed him to form his own opinions on the guilt and innocence of those being questioned. Even if he could help, telepathic probes were something that held no merit in the Romulan legal system. If you were talented enough to read the thoughts of a suspect, how much more talent did you need to display in order to place thoughts there? This was a crime that would be solved with physical evidence and subject interviews. It was also a task that Aeric would have to leave to the more versed in the subject. His skill set simply did not involved the investigation and processing of a crime.

Shelby D

#1
JP with Bryan and Crystal

After trying to leave the space station and being locked down for the last few days Shelby was less than thrilled. She had found out from Burne's in a private conversation that Nalah had escaped and that he was searching the ship from top to bottom with no luck yet.

Still because of the lock down the guest from the party had been given quarters to stay in and she was heading for them at the moment so she could collect her stuff and go back to the Arabella. It had been a long day and although she would have liked to have talked with Joe he was in meetings most of the day.

Walking to her door she waited for the doors to open and she tried the lights right away. They remained off. "Lights." she called out again.

Still nothing. "Great, brand new space station, lights don't work, nice." She walked over towards where the manual control panel should be, feeling her way along the wall. Her fingers touched the control and the lights flashed on finally.

Immediately and arm was around her neck, placing her in a choke hold. "DON'T," a familiar voice warned as Shelby braced for combat. A small plasma torch was in her assailants other hand, pressed close to her cheek. After a brief moment, Nalah continued," I didn't kill her."

Remaining still Daelen glanced back and she relaxed herself, fighting wasn't going to solve anything. "Nalah, let me go..." If anything it would make matters worse. "let's talk about this..."

For a moment, Nalah hesitated but then the torch moved away from Shelby's face and the arm came off her neck. Nalah stepped away.

Shelby turned to see her friend and had a moment of déjà vu. Nalah's appearance was very similar to when Shelby first found her aboard the doomed Romulan freighter. Gaunt, dirty and looking desperate. Clearly the last three days had been difficult for her.

Watching the Romulan the security officer never let her eyes off the woman.

"I'm glad, you know," Nalah said, her back still towards Shelby, "I'm glad she's dead."

Shelby D

#2
JP with Bryan and Crystal

Studying the way that the woman said the word, Shelby took everything in, she let her instinct take over. "You don't mean that completely..."

"She destroyed my family!" Nalah shouted as she spun around to face Shelby. Much quieter now she continued," She deceived my father and tricked him into defecting. He thought he was trying to save the Empire but only ended up destroying himself...and me. I was going to have my revenge, but.." she paused and her conflicted emotion flickered across her face and she looked into Shelby's eye's," I'm just so tired."

"Nalah .....are you going to be ok?" Asking quietly Daelen moved herself out of reach. Shelby trusted Nalah but as in any case like this, there had to be some prudence and the officer knew that people could be pushed; much like Nalah had been in their first encounter.

Nalah's shoulder visibly dropped and her head looked down towards the deck. "They think I did it, don't they? You're going to have to arrest me aren't you....again." A faint smile played across her lips.

There was no visible signs or reaction to the woman or her response which implied her innocence as Shelby stood there. How long they stayed silent Daelen wasn't sure but when she did speak it was conviction. "You have been through a lot and if we had some time.....do you think we could prove you didn't do this? Do you know who might have had reason or chance or even motivation...did you see anyone..."

Nalah looked up again at Shelby and her words came out staggered. "I-I knew I had to somehow disguise myself if I had any hope of getting close to the Senator at the reception." thoughtfully she continued, "I found the guest quarters.... I broke into a room...grabbed what I could there was an outfit with a mask ...some ...sort of ceremonial mask...It sufficed to hide my more Romulan features."

Pacing a little the woman seemed to reel back in time. "I headed out but had to duck back into a closet...that's also where I found this," she said, holding up the plasma torch. "I would just have had to get close enough to Navash to take my revenge..." she said, taking a seat at the small rooms table.

"I moved towards her at the cemeony, I could see myself killing her, watching with a smile on my face....I could see her dying. I could see my father..." her voice caught. She looked up again at Shelby, tears visible in her eyes. "I just wanted him to be proud of me, " she said in a choked voice. "I hesitated. The next thing I knew, Navash had fallen to the floor. There was blood everywhere. I turned away, I was in shock, people started running towards me and I ran from the room but..." she trailed off.

"What? What is it?" Shelby asked.

"I saw someone.....someone slipped out through the service door ahead of me... the one that I had come through. They looked like part of the reception staff but there was something about them, they way they moved....." Nalah replied as she looked up into Shelby's eyes.

It took some time for Shelby to formulate a plan but finally she spoke. "All right, I don't think you're a killer...I know you were mad but a heartless killer would have stood there and watched with a smile on their face....you're going to listen to me, you're going to do as I say and I don't want any arguments."



Meds

#3
Joint post by Crystal & Meds

Coming back from Aerics meeting Joe's mind ran awash with thoughts. He had a few likely suspects and a few strays but the one he considered the most believable canidate was Nalah Jarok, the obvious ones were not nessacarily the guilty ones though. The things most damning was her escape from the ships security; she had fought and even threatened the Senator and all of this on the day of the Senator's murder. He couldn't ignore the facts.

Walking into his office the two waIting officers stood at attention. Sitting down Joe moved a leather case to one side and picked up their PADDs. "Normally I'd say at ease, but as I am not at ease with this situation,  I don't think you two should be either....stay where you are.." the Chief grumbled as he scannned the PADD.

Finally he shifted his hawk like gaze towards Ensign Burnes first. "I can't believe you could be so sloppy and remiss. What part of confined to quarters do you not understand?" pausing Joe dropped the device on his desk and he leaned back. "Not only did you take her out for a meal, was you planning on buying her a dress as well?"

Burnes went to speak but was cut off abruptly by a clearly annoyed security chief. "Shut it. You let her walk away while you had a chin wag with some of your mates. You bloody well screwed it this time Ensign. I know i trained your better, this shouldn't have happened on our watch!  I have no choice but to send you back to the academy for a
three month training programme and don't for one minute think you are out of my sight.  You will send reports to me every evening on your progress and yes Ensign Burnes you will be coming back to this ship and you will be working for me. Report to shuttle bay 2 once the lockdown has been removed a craft will take you to a transporter ship. Dismissed"

Burnes looked mortified and he nodded formally before he gave a worried glance over to his collegue; Ensign Daelen.

Meds

#4
Joint post by Meds & Crystal

Shelby knew this was not going to go well and to that end she barely waited until the door hissed shut behind the man before she attempted to interject. "Joseph I....."

D'Callan put his hand up to stop her from speaking "Less of the pleasentries we're on duty here Ensign." Joe stressed the last word slightly. "Mr Burnes there, was working under your orders. His lack of hindsight has compremised my department. It's placed my abilities as chief under another damp umbrella with our new Captain and honestly it has nicked my confidence in you. There has been a murder and low and behold guess who one of the prime suspects is, your friend and my pain in the arse Nalah"

Shifting her eyes for a moment away from the man Daelen tried one more time.  "Sir," She gave him time to stop her but this time he allowed her to continue. Taking a deep breath the ensign glanced back up to study Joe. "I do not believe that she did this. I have gotten to know her and although there were some rough spots I know that Nalah
Jarok is not a killer."

"She isn't?" there was sarcasim dripping from each word as D'Callan stood. "She's agro, she escaped our custody and now someone is dead! I seem to have quite a different view than you, it appears!"

Looking upwards towards the ceiling as he evened his tone, D'Callan walked around the desk and sat on the opposite side, crossing his arms then directing his dark eyes towards the half romulan woman.  "We have our hands full Ensign. There's an on going investigation. An escaped prisoner on the loose, and you above all others, doesn't buy that she's a killer." Shelby blinached at his listing. "Adding to that we have a Captain who is not a happy bunny...and I have a spliting headache that started just about the time that the Senator hit the floor of the space station. I don't want to put a damper on your sunny day here but nothing that has happened lately has helped this situation. "

Never letting her eyes wander, "I understand Sir"  Daelen pursed her lips and then with a frown she finally spoke. But there's something you need to know. I haven't had the chance until now to speak to you alone..."

"For the love of...what...tell me." He said firmly and with the upmost annoyance.

"Nalah didn't do this you have to believe me...I know because she told me things"

Immediately pushing off from the desk, D'Callan stood toe to toe with Shelby. "What?" He said unsure if he wanted to hear more.

"I think I know where Nalah might be..."

"Brilliant, bloody brilliant...Why, may I ask, is she not in a holding cell?" Joe glared at Shelby as his obviously sarcastic remark filled the room.

"I wanted to talk to you first, do this right. Let you talk to her yourself. See what I see..." Daelen said softly.

"Frankly Ensign my interest in seeing Nalah Jarok roaming the countryside free and clear is practically nonexistant. So this is what's going to play out. Your damn well going to take me to whetever you think she is, you take me there now. This isn't open for discussion or negotiation." was all he said as the silence between them became a vast emptiness.

X

Joint post by Chris and Mike

"Come in," Commander James, captain of the Arabella said from one of the plush chairs in his ready room. With the current changes in the staff of his ship, he needed to make more than a few changes to her command structure. Aeric took a sip of the Bolian pear cider from his mug and smiled up to Galdar as the door opened. He quietly motioned the lieutenant to the couch across from him. "Good morning Mr. Galdar, how are you doing?"

Dropping easily into the offered seat Galdar made an unpleasant face at his new commanding officer. "A lot better than I could be I guess, sir, but with my father aboard the station and everything else that's going on...a whole lot worse than I'd like." Sitting back, he caught the Commander's eye and grinned slightly. "Still, flight duty isn't exactly taxing at the moment and the ship's new enough that the maintenance demands are small so my on-duty burdens are relatively light."

Having served under James for five years as an ensign on the USS Tiberius, Galdar was normally very much at ease in the older man's company; something that he couldn't say of many senior officers. For a moment, as he stood at the door, he'd considered taking a more formal stance now that Aeric was in command of the ship but this was a private meeting and, captain or not, Commander James knew him well enough not to need any faux demonstrations of protocol and respect.


"Grab a drink and have a seat." Aeric added with a smile. "This is going to be both the best and worst day of your life so far."

A shadow of worry flickered across the lieutenant's orange face as his previously self-assured manner started to slip. "Ah...Sir? Err.." Tailing off, Galdar slid to his feet and crossed to the captain's replicator. "Millipede juice, no shells." he ordered quietly, waiting while the beverage coallesced. Taking a sip he turned back to the captain and resumed his seat. "Sir?"


"Since assuming this post, I've spent the last few days sorting out what I want my command crew to be." Aeric said. "If you had a bit more seasoning, this conversation would be about you stepping up as my new XO. For various reasons and crew moves, you'd be one of my first choices. I know how you work, I know what potential you have. I also know that you're not quite ready to give up the helm."

Aeric paused to let the information sink in. "That being said, I want you as my second officer. You will be able to stay at the helm while you get the additional skills that captains are looking for in their XO. I know my ship is safe with you, but I need you to be confident in that as well."

Drink forgotten for the moment, Galdar stared at James. They locked eyes briefly, the Ferengi searching for signs of mirth on the face of his superior officer. Finding none, his head dropped for a moment while his fingers strayed unconsciously to the gold lieutenants pips on his uniform. Looking up again, he stood slowly and drew himself up to the full extent of his small frame. Bringing his wrists together, hands cupped in front of him, he bowed slightly. "Thank you sir." he started formally, almost awkwardly, "I am flattered at the confidence you show in my abilities."

Sitting once more he looked thoughtful for a moment as he took another sip of millipede juice. "Sir? Permission to speak freely?"


"Please do."

"Despite all you've said, you know there are a number of more qualified candidates for this position already aboard. D'Callan, Tolok even Ryla", he smiled slightly at the slip, "...I mean Doctor Drett...come instantly to mind. All are Lieutenant Commanders with a service record as long or longer than mine. I've only just made full Lieutenant. Why am I even in the running for this?" He paused and nodded once to the captain. "I guess I'm now demonstrating my 'need for additional skills'."

"I try to weigh all of the options before I make a call." Aeric said calmly. "If something is happening to my ship that caused both myself and the XO to be placed out of commission, where do you think the other officers you mentioned might be? Hopefully they will be at their posts doing what they do best. What the ship needs is someone in the chair that knows what she can do and how to get her home. You are rough around the edges in the command aspects of the position, but that's what this position is for. It will give you the skills and the confidence to make the hard choices."

He then brought his eyes to meet the young ferengi and leaned forward slightly to close the distance between them. "Remember when I said the best and worse day of your life? We've only gotten to half the conversation. You'll also be serving as acting XO until the replacement for my old post arrives. So, even without those additional skills, you're going to have to display them to the rest of the crew. Starting about nowish."

Throwing back his head, Galdar drained the remainder of his juice and dropped his glass to the table. "Aye sir." he said crisply, head spinning at this extra news. "I'll do my best...once I work out where to start."

"The crew manifest." Aeric said. "We have several people that will be shifting duties or are being assigned to Sevryll's staff. We're going to need to rebuild most of our departments. Having held the post that you are now currently filling, I know the crew files pretty well, but a good XO needs to do the same. I want you to look over those files and see if you can come up with some recommendations for the holes in our staff."

"Aye sir," Galdar nodded firmly, "assuming your...old...office is available for my use."

Sitting forward in the chair Galdar prepared to rise, assuming the meeting to be over but as he did so, another though struck him. "What about my current duties? As acting XO I will presumably be taking on a different bridge shift rotation and leaving the helm for the time being. That's not too big a burden while we're docked to the station but once a permanent replacement arrives, may I assume that I'll be returning to my duties as they are currently defined?" A small smile started at the corners of his mouth "Or...as Executive Officer, might I propose some slight changes for the new Second Officer as and when he resumes normal role? An adjustment in the balance between his alpha shift helm duties and his Gamma shift command role perhaps? It's been noted that he's lacking in some elements of command experience," Galdar's eyes were twinkling with suppressed amusement now, "perhaps a couple of Gamma shift command rotations balanced against a corresponding number of Alpha shift duties making the remaining time available to fulfill his other duties?"
now, "perhaps a couple of Gamma shift command rotations balanced against a corresponding number of Alpha shift duties making the remaining time available to fulfill his other duties?"

"I'd assume you were a mind reader if I didn't know better." Aeric replied and rose.  "With Casey heading over to the station, we'll be having various command officers rotating through the gamma shift. It would be remiss of us if you name wasn't on that list of candidates When we get our new XO, you'll find some of you and some of our department heads will all find themselves with a shift there. If you are up to it, you could actually pull two sixteen hour shifts during the week to give you more physical days off and use that time to expand your skill set."

Rising also, Galdar nodded again. "I can do that sir. It's no worse than some of the odd rostering Damon Glem used to put me through on the Depository to keep me away from some of his more questionable deals. Thank you."


Aeric offered a hand to the lieutenant. "No, thank you Galdar. You could have refused this, but in accepting, you've proved that you're the man for the job."

Taking the hand, the ferengi shook it warmly and grinned up at his captain. "I couldn't let you think of me as any less of an officer than I really am. There's little enough of me as it is when compared to most of the people around here!" Releasing Aeriic's hand, Galdar took a step back and straightened again. "Permission to return to the bridge captain?" he asked formally, completely failing to mask his eagerness. Summoned from the helm, Aeric could see the desire to try a different chair burning in his eyes.

"Permission granted lieutenant and the bridge is yours. I have some business to attend to on the station. Dismissed." Aeric said before retrieving his PADD from the table. While his psychic abilities could not read the mind of the ensign, he could easily appreciate the excitement that shone on his face.

Turning on his heel, Galdar strode to the door of the ready room...a ready room that he would now have access to, if required, during his bridge command shifts. The thought sent a little shiver down his spine as he walked out onto the bridge, the closing doors hiding him from Aeric's view.

Meds

#6
Joint post by Bryancd, Crystal & Meds


Ensuring that both D'Callan and Shelby left their communicators elsewhere for the time being, something the chief wasn't the happiest about, but he did abide by.

The pair made their way towards the lesser traveled parts of the station. It took them nearly an hour but by the time they arrived at where Daelen was leading them; they hadn't seen a soul for ages.

"You know where she is don't you." Although the words were semi-accusatory, there was less of an edge on D'Callan's words than Shelby had expected.

Glancing back at the man she didn't say anything but at the same time she couldn't meet his eyes directly. "I needed you to trust me on this." was all she said as they walked to the end of a dark hallway. Giving Joe one last look Shelby reached out and seemed to toy with a lock along the side of a hatchway.

A moment later there was a noise on the other side and Shelby tapped in something on what looked to be a handheld keypad of some kind.  It was clear that Shelby had taken some steps to ensure they could not be tracked.  The door opened into a small room with dark shadows in it and as Shelby and D'Callan walked in there was movement to one side of the room.

D'Callan seemed to make a quick move for a weapon, possibly something hidden but he stayed his hand when a less than sparkling version of Nalah Jarok emerged wearing some well worn clothes and smudge on one cheek.

"No it's ok...it's ok I promise..." The tension in the room was thick as Shelby stood as a buffer between the two.

Joseph looked at Nalah and then back at Shelby. "Explain, and you had better make this good"

Nalah stepped forward and repeated what she had told Shelby except she said it quicker and a bit more softly as she noticed D'Callan had not taken his eyes of Shelby ash she spoke.

After a while Shelby said softly as if asking the question might disturb the man. "What happens now Chief?"

Jen

#7
Joint Post, Part 1, by Jen and Just X

Captain Sevryll took a sip of her spice tea as she silently regarded the man seated across from her. Deep creases of concern etched Admiral Nathanial Jacob Quinn's ageless features and though gray-green, his eyes shone with the same dark intensity of his Betazoid mother's. They penetrated Captain Sevryll's, searching for something hidden within. She was an emotionally disciplined Vulcan but the Admiral could read the same concern he wore so openly on his own face, hidden below the surface of her stolid expression.

He was one of the most powerful telepaths in the Federation, but the ability to sense emotions in Sevryll developed over time. Their long friendship began aboard the USS Tiberius, where she served as his first officer. A decade had passed since she reported for duty aboard his old ship, but they had stayed in touch. Now Nathanial was the admiral over seeing the Seventh Fleet's operations, and his former first officer was its fleet captain.

With deliberate care, the willowy Vulcan set her cup down on the desk within her new office aboard Quirinus Station. The station would serve as the fleet's hub and a temporary home for the Romulan people.  It still did not feel like her office and the station did not feel like her home, but it would have to suffice. She could no longer manage the seven Starfleet vessels sent to aid the Romulans from aboard the Arabella, and the recent murder of Senator Navash made her move to the space station all the more necessary—especially now that she was asked to head the joint investigation.

"Security is currently searching for and interviewing persons of interest. One of which is a trusted officer aboard the Arabella."

The admiral grimaced in response.

"I believe whoever murdered Senator Nevash assumed that we would naturally accept our officer's DNA on the murder weapon as evidence of guilt... Perhaps those responsible have also concluded that we would sacrifice our people, to maintain peace with the new Empire."

With a slow contemplative nod, Admiral Quinn recalled a similar event that killed a third of his Tiberius crew. One of their staff had purposefully infected his fellows with a deadly virus, which spread to the bio gel packs and crippled the ship. Nathanial straightened his tunic as he stood from his chair. "I fervently hope the perpetrator of this crime is not one of your officers, Sevryll...it would severely damage our efforts here. But, I agree. The conviction of a Starfleet officer would be a little too convenient to those opposed to the new Empire's affiliation with the Federation... I smell a rat. An especially putrid one."

Without a proper announcement, the door slid open to allow Commander Aeric James admittance. His mind was focused on completing the staff reassignments and his eyes were fixed on the latest conditional reports of the Arabella. "Sevryll, how did you ever manage—"

A look up from his PADD forced the commander to stop mid-sentence. He gave a polite, apologetic nod of his head to those gathered in the room. "I'm sorry, I didn't realize you had company. How are you Admiral?"

"All things considered, I'm doing fairly well, thank you Commander... I was just about to go." Quinn addressed them both. "I have every confidence in you, your crew and the fleet. I'll be in touch soon, Captain Sevryll. Live long and prosper."

"Peace and long life, Admiral." Replied Sevryll as Nathanial Quinn took two steps toward Commander James and vanished.
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Bryancd

Joint Post by Bryan, Crystal and Meds

Joseph looked over where he had entered then he nodded to himself. "I don't know right now."  Putting his hands behind his back he seemed to muse the matter. Walking back and forth in a thoughtful manner for a bit before he moved to stand straight in front of her with his penetrating gaze towards Shelby's stormy eyes. Without him saying
anything she responded to him. She knew what he wanted to know.

"She is innocent, I can prove it. Just give us a chance..."

Remaining un-reactive, Joseph lifted his eyes to Nalah. "As far as I am concerned she is guilty. Hiding out here does not help any situation, and as for giving the appearance of being someone suspicious - this looks worse. I want her in the brig and until Jarok s proven innocent you are here by relieved of duty Miss Daelen."

Shelby looked shocked as she titled her head. "What?"

"Don't push your luck ensign"

Daelen glared at the man coldly. "You can't do this. You need me!"

Joseph growled as he walked over by Nalah and glared at her.  "Don't bloody well patronize me." his words were to Shelby but he pointed at Nalah first. "This one is a suspect in a murder investigation. We've been  locked down on this station and I'm not dropping the ball again"

Walking back over to Shelby, D'Callan stared at her hard, "I had to defend my  department because of all this and while I'm doing that you're busy assisting our prime suspect in hiding?  This is unacceptable and at the moment the only thing I demand from you is for you to obey my damn orders!"

Shelby stared at him with contempt.. "This is not just about what you've been doing or your career. This is also about proving a woman's innocence."

"Yes, it is, but you seem to have forgotten that sometimes wearing these pips means something. I do have a job to do too. I have others to answer to and other suspects to question. Don't you dare presume that I'm singling her out."

Shelby glanced at Nalah the back at Joe. "If you stand me down....How can I prove she is innocent. All my clearance will be revoked!"

Joseph looked up and paused for a moment, then he crossed his arms. " I'll inform the Captain of my orders in thirty hours time. Other than
  hat I never saw this place or either of you. Is that understood?"

"Yes Sir..." Shelby said as she watched the man leave the room with annoyance. She pivoted after giving him a mock salute and she walked over to Nalah then she stopped.

She thought more about what D'Callan had said "He said thirty hours. He's giving us thirty hours to find you innocent"

Nalah smiled and whispered "He also said don't let him down. He's putting his career on the coals for you and....for me. "

Shelby looked at the closed door and knew exactly what Joe had done for her and Jarok both. He was giving them a chance.


Feathers

#9
On entering the Bridge of the Arabella, head still spinning from his interview with Commander James, Galdar had stepped smartly up to the main level and walked towards the centre of the command space. Nodding in acknowledgment of those who noted his arrival, he waved the ensign struggling to get up from the helm back into his seat."Keep your station and continue the diagnostic Mr Bosa", he said firmly, "I'm sure your other duties can wait for the moment."

As the ensign acknowledged the command, the Ferengi had turned toward the bridge rail, the auxiliary stations behind it...and the chairs in front of it. Trying not to show too much inappropriate glee he'd carefully schooled his features before striding to the seat at the centre of the bridge, turning to face the view screen and sitting down purposefully.

From his position at the Engineering station, Lieutenant Commander Tolok had arched an eyebrow as he regarded the Ferengi settling into the centre seat. In command of the bridge while Aeric attended to other matters, Tolok had been forewarned about the unexpected nature of his relief but had not been given specifics. Presumably this was what Commander James had had in mind.

"Request permission to return to engineering, sir?" the Vulcan had asked loudly, straightening, his brow still raised.

"Sir?" Galdar started, surprised by both the request and the honorific. Catching himself, he'd felt a flush rise to his cheeks, a reaction to the awareness that all eyes were now on him. "I mean, of course si...Lieutenant Commander." Nodding once, Tolok locked down his station and headed to the turbo-lift.

As the doors had closed behind the engineer, Galdar had sat back in his chair and regarded the officers around him. From his exchange with Tolok, it looked like most of them had worked out what they'd just witnessed and the looks he was receiving as a result were generally warm and encouraging. He owed the Vulcan a drink for that little show of handing over command.

He'd commanded the bridge before, of course, both on the Luxembourg and the Arabella but in terms of both people and expectations, there was a world of difference between a lieutenants Gamma watch and the XO's Alpha watch. What was the old addage? "Gamma shift got to find trouble but it was Alpha shift who had to get out of it." Now if only he could get the Arabella into space before the new XO arrived, he'd be the happiest he'd been in years.

A cough beside him jolted him from his reverie. A crewman was offering him a PADD, it looked like duty attendance reports from the science department. Smiling he took the device and glanced over the first screen of data. Appending his thumbprint to the record, he handed it back and turned his attention to his latest task. Reaching across, Galdar activated the terminal embedded between the command chairs and summoned up the personnel and recent transfer records. It wasn't what he'd planned to do with this shift but since when did plans ever dictate the activities of the day.

I know it's unnusual here but I don't have a podcast of my own.

Jen

#10
Joint Post by Jen and Meds

Lieutenant Commander Joseph D'Callan jogged around the corner and stopped in the Arabella corridor. Running from the station and back to his office to pick up his badge and the case, had at least helped him make up his mind that he needed to cut out the chocolate. He put his hands on his knees and caught his breath. Holding his com badge in his hand he slapped it on his chest and tapped the device. "D'Callan to Dunn. I need to have a word with you in my office, bring the new security devices we had shipped in last week. You are going to be testing them out".

Christopher Dunn's voice chirped back, "The Vidcoms? Oh brilliant. I'll await your order, sir. Dunn out"

Breathing in, Joseph headed through the door of the quarters he had been running to. As it flowed open and he stepped in, he glanced at each of the security officers standing guard just inside of the entrance. One was a stout Romulan woman, in a drab-gray uniform. Her keen dark eyes rolled in the security chief's direction; the appraising look she gave him seemed a mixture of pure disdain and mild respect. The other guard, a lanky human male with curly brown hair and bright blue eyes that smiled with admiration and pride, nodded in greeting to his superior officer. The chief of security then stepped forward, picking his way through the cluttered quarters of the Arabella's chief medical officer.

Doctor Ryla Drett kept her back to Joseph as he neared the small desk where she sat.  He carefully maneuvered around a pile of discarded uniforms then paused to let his eye briefly roam the mess that the Trill doctor called "organized chaos". Ahead of him, a number of PADDs were scattered atop a yellow settee. A few overflowed to the spotted blue rug that sloppily covered the floor beneath it. A number of teal colored lab coats were tossed over the arm of the sofa, half covering a stack of medical books resting on the floor—one of which was left open at Ryla's right foot. All of the books were borrowed from the station and none were printed in Federation Standard. Joseph cocked his head to one side in order to study the page. He could not read Romulan but by the looks of the illustration centered amongst the text, she was brushing up on Vulcanoid anatomy.

"Good morning," Ryla said as she casually flipped a page in yet another book. Keeping her gaze fixed on the subject she studied, the doctor continued. "Did you come to play chess...maybe a little kal-toh? I think I prefer the Vulcan game to the Earth game." It was an all too fitting favorite of the untidy doctor, for the object of the game was to find the seeds of order amidst profound chaos...a skill she seemed proficient at.

Ryla took a breath, stood from her desk and turned to face the chief of security. A lengthy strand of golden hair fell before her eyes, but with a puff of air directed at her spotted forehead, she blew it back in place. "Captain Sevryll and I use to meet for a match of kal-toh once a week. But now she's posted to the station and I'm...well... I'm here... I guess I should get use to playing alone." After a brief silence Ryla smirked and shrugged concurrently. "Things have changed a bit, haven't they Joe?"

D'Callan had never been a one for protocol and he had no plans to change his tune now. His superiors would moan at him for letting his friendships interfere with his duties, but there was no way Ryla Drett was guilty...she was quite simply the kindest woman he knew. Well, perhaps her manner could be improved when it came to Commander K'Tan, whom she disliked for some unknown reason. But for the most part Doctor Drett was a gentle, honest and caring individual. He stepped forward, carefully avoiding the open book at her feet and gave her an awkward yet friendly hug. "I know... Don't worry. We'll get to the bottom of this in no time."

"Thank you Joe," she said as they pulled apart.

"Sit," he said, smiling down at the petite Trill. "Lets get this all done and dusted."

Ryla put on a smile that was less than convincing, which was evident by the lack of dimples, and sat once more. As she did, Joseph looked about the room and found a chair to drag beside hers then placed a blue briefcase on the desk and opened it. Inside was a stack of loose paper. Using the antiquated material had become a habit when investigating cases that became personal and this case had certainly become that.

"I'll get right to the point," he said as he drew a small box from beneath the paper. "This is the reason for your status as a 'person of interest'; the data gathered during the autopsy you performed, led the station authorities to search for it." He pushed the box toward her with two fingers as he continued. "They've recently deemed it to be the weapon used to murder your former patient, Senator Nevash." Joseph keyed a sequence into the lid and with a corresponding beep the metal box popped open, revealing a single hypo spray.  "It's Starfleet issue. And Ryla...your DNA is on it."

The Trill stared at the implement, which glared petulantly up at her from its place within the box. "That's not hard to believe, Joe," she said after a moment of introspection. "I'm a doctor. I handle these implements every day." Drett absently chewed her bottom lip, a tendency she had when deep in thought.  "But DNA is not a difficult to acquire. May I examine the hypo?"

Joseph removed a pair of gloves from the case and held them out to her. "Here, put these on." Ryla flicked a questioning look at him, indicated by a slowly furrowed brow, then took the gloves and pulled the over-sized things onto her small hands. With a nod of approval from the chief, she carefully lifted the hypo from the case and turned it over in her hands.

"As I'm sure you know, all equipment issued to Starfleet vessels is encoded with a specific serial number. Each number is unique to the ship and department they belonged to. Replicated devices would lack this particular trait," said the doctor as she placed the device back in the container and tugged the gloves from her hands. "I'm sure the first thing that Captain Sevryll ordered, when they recovered this hypo, was an ID scan. And, since you're here, it's apparent the analysis revealed that it does in fact belong to my sickbay." Ryla's soft, quiet voice slowly rose in volume as she finished the thought. "And since I didn't kill the senator, it means that someone entered my medical bay, took this device right out from under my nose, and used it to commit murder." The spots that traced her hairline were pulled downward as she scowled at the device resting in the case before her.

Without a word, Joseph closed the lid on the box and placed the evidence back in his briefcase. "Ryla," he said gently, "I know you're outraged. So am I. We'll find the individual who did this. I promise. " He placed a hand on her shoulder and kept his eyes on hers until she nodded in response. The security chief then turned his attention to his notes in his briefcase and thumbed through them. "I do these things the old fashioned way. It's a pain in the ass for some, but it works for me." He glanced at her with a weak smile that faded quickly. "I need to ask you some questions about the events leading up to the murder. Why don't you start with the night before the murder and go on from there."

"Alright." Said Ryla as she clasped her hands before her and frowned as she called to mind the details he requested.  "The night before the gala, I had a dinner meeting with 'Emperor Oryn' in the holodeck after my shift."

"What did you talk about?"

"He asked me to lend my visage to the station's holographic doctor. I said 'no' and then he offered me the position as the station's chief medical officer. I refused again, but in the end I agreed to help program his Medical Hologram. After the meeting, I returned to my quarters."

"Then what?"

She paused, working her jaw slightly as if chewing on a memory she found distasteful. "I was about to crawl into bed when Commander K'Tan called for medical assistance...he said it was an 'emergency'." Her tone became dry and the account concerning the chief of operations, was uttered swiftly. "He asked me to come to his quarters... said he and the boy he adopted had been 'sparing' and there had been an accident. When I arrived I discovered that the commander's arm had been dislocated by the child no less." Her cheeks flushed slightly with aggravation. "The boy could have poked his eye out with one of those Klingon bat thingies K'Tan is so fond of." She began gesturing with her hand, dramatically jabbing a finger toward of her left eye to illustrate. After a moment, she noticed Joseph's attempt to contain a bout of laughter and she stopped the action by gripping her hands. "It's not funny." She whispered and glared at him until she was certain he wouldn't laugh. "I treated his injury and returned to my own quarters. The whole thing took no more than twenty minutes...that's all."

The security chief's smile diminished slowly as he nodded. "Go on..."

She closed the anatomy book and proceeded to describe the events of the next day." The following morning was uneventful. I worked the first shift and when it ended I headed to my quarters to prepare for the gala. I ran into Counselor Margon in the turbo lift on the way. We 'chatted'. He invited me to his office for a counseling session.... we 'talked'... I left an hour before I arrived at gala. There, Lieutenant Galdar and I tried a few 'appetizers'...did you like those things?" She inquired, suddenly derailing herself. "I'm certainly not afraid to try new foods, but I don't believe I found a single entrée appealing." She thought about it a moment then shook her head as if deciding that 'no, there was nothing at all delicious about Romulan food', and continued her story. "Then Galdar and I danced. I think most were surprised that a Ferengi could cut a rug...I taught him of course. We frequented all the dances during our academy days." She smiled as she reflected upon the past. "We had a great time at the gala...then someone cried for help and I came to the aid of Senator Nevash. I felt for a pulse and found none. I contacted the Arabella and Quinirus medical facilities and a moment later I was transported to the station's infirmary. Soon after I was joined by two members of my staff: Nurse Caine and Doctor Myella Peterson. We did all we could for the Senator, but she was dead before she materialized. There was nothing any of us could do to bring her back."

Joseph stood from his chair and tried to pace the room, but found it difficult not to trip over the clutter. "I'm guessing even though your quarters are 'disorderly', you still know where everything is." Ryla nodded. "What's funny," he chuckled, "is that your medical ward is spotless. Everything is in its place, isn't it?"

The doctor gave him a cautious look. "Of course. It's a sickbay. It has to be immaculate and all the equipment must be accounted for."

Joseph nodded, "I assumed as much...the hypo was found on the station... Ryla, can you think of anyone you may have had a conflict with in recent days?" The doctor opened her mouth as if to speak, but Joseph put his hand up.

"I don't mean Commander K'tan, " he smiled.

Ryla scoffed at him a minute before answering his question with a vexed tone. "I haven't exactly been 'Ms. Popular' among the evacuees, Joe. The only Romulans who seem to tolerate me are Oryn and Sutpak Choro. The senators who were brought to sickbay, were constantly at each others throats. Oh and none of my Romulan patients were fond my bedside manner. I know this is going to sound incriminating... but... when they wouldn't stop fighting I threatened to drug them to shut them all up." She followed the reluctant admission with a sheepish smile.
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Feathers

As the warp core hummed and throbbed behind him, Tolok listened carefully to its pitch and rhythm. There was something logical (or pleasant, he thought, drawing a rare emotional parallel) in being chief aboard a new ship that hadn't been subject to the stresses of battle.  No doubt the need to keep his charge intact would necessitate all sorts of inventive solutions in the future but, for the moment, she was still as she'd been built and his need to innovate was minimal.

Despite that, some of the staffing changes would still be...less than ideal. He was losing people who'd already become adept at looking after this vessel and it's systems and that would necessitate some adjustment on the part of himself and others but they, and he, would cope.

There was a lot more going on aboard the station than simple starship maintenance but the Vulcan believed in the separation of responsibilities. His responsibility remained that of ensuring that the Arabella was space-worthy. Murder investigations belonged elsewhere in the command structure.

For a while, Tolok had been concerned that he would be tapped for the XO position but it appeared that the captain also believed in separating responsibilities aboard ship. In an emergency Tolok could best serve in Engineering and that was where he intended to stay.

Tapping his com badge, the engineer brought one of the impending transfers to mind. "Tolok to Garriss"

"Sir?" the human responded promptly.

"if you have the time I'd like to talk over your intermix ratio studies before you depart for the duration."

"Aye sir. Thirty minutes in Main Engineering?"

"Acceptable. Tolok out."

I know it's unnusual here but I don't have a podcast of my own.

X

#12
Part 2 Of 2 by Jen and Just X
Aeric smiled and took up the seat that Quinn had been occupying. "And now I know why I thought you were alone—no thoughts to sense. I'll make sure to check for active holo-matrices the next time I barge in without knocking. Did I interrupt any universe changing revelations?"

Sevryll did not like turning her ship over to another commander, even if that commander was her husband— it was illogical to posses such an attachment and she knew it. But when Admiral Quinn echoed her sentiments, regarding his old ship, she decided her reluctance was natural for Nathanial was anything but illogical. He pointed out that she was the fleet captain and the Arabella was the flagship of that fleet, which in turn meant the vessel still belonged to her whether or not she was currently aboard.

With an arched brow, she answered Aeric telepathically. No. There were no 'universe altering revelations', as you call it. I was briefing the admiral on the investigation and informed him of Emperor Oryn's request that I command the station in the interim. His status as a person of interest has forced him to step aside until the case is solved.

He nodded slowly, "I can't think of a better person to run this station. It's a place built by the Federation and the vulcanoid races and you're a prime example of both. I just wish my news was more exciting. Galdar is going to be my second officer and right now he's my acting first officer. My new XO, Commander Miller, won't arrive until some time after the travel ban is lifted. Given the distance to their last post, and the unavailability of slipstream capable Starfleet vessels in this region, it may be faster to take the Aurora there on a quick trip. Hell, it might be the last time I get to do a shuttle run for a while."

"Lieutenant Galdar is a fine choice," She uttered aloud before continuing nonverbally.  And your choice for third officer? Lieutenant Commander Peterson's transfer to the station has no doubt left that position open as well.

If Joe can get his people together, he would be my choice for third officer. Aeric sighed as his frustration rose in his mind. He'd be my XO now, if this breach didn't happen. I think that one day he would also make a fine XO, but he needs to show me that he can get his department together before I add more responsibilities.  If he can't get his team together, I'm going to go with Drett or  Zremm.

Sevryll started to take a sip of her tea, but found it had grown too cold for her liking. "It is your decision, of course. But if I were in your position, I would not dismiss Mr. D'Callan so quickly.

Despite the experience her symbiont affords her, Doctor Drett has not chosen the command path and though Mr. Zremm would be the next logical choice, Joseph holds a more thorough knowledge of ship operations." She would have paused at this point for emphasis, but telepathic communication did not often provide its practitioners the opportunity. Her thoughts flowed like unimpeded water between she and Aeric, giving neither a chance for pause. If I may make a suggestion, I would propose that you make your final decision only after the particulars of this case are fully known and a proper assessment of Mr. D'Callan's responsibility in this matter can be determined.

Aeric relaxed more into the seat, slouching his posture. You're right. Joe is the one I want as third officer and it would be premature to start grooming anyone else. I know that he has the talent for the job. Now that he's stopped carrying that silly bat, he has the bearing for it as well. He just needs to get our house in order. But we're spending far too much time discussing work. How are the kids settling into station life?

"Murynn and Nevaul have readily established themselves here. But Aria has yet to find a single quality of station life that she finds agreeable. She will not admit it, but I believe she grieves the absence of her friends...in particular Mr. Margon's son. I must acknowledge that I share her view of station life, though my duty enables me to ignore what I find disagreeable about this post and move on. She does not have that responsibility."

"I have no doubt that Aria adapt, but I might be able to remedy this situation." Aeric replied aloud. "With Rori and the kids here and K'tan spending joint duties here, I am thinking of transferring those with children to your service on the station. As much as I like having the kids aboard, it's going to be dangerous out there and we don't have an escape plan for the children in place. I think that I might have an idea..."

Aeric's voice trailed off as a plan started to come together.

Though they were not yet organized she heard her husband's thoughts before he uttered them aloud. I will be glad for Mr. Margon's presence aboard the station. He will be needed among the staff here and the recently installed holocommunications will allow him to attend his patents on any of the ships within our fleet, including the Arabella.  She finished the conversation aloud, "and I'm sure Aria will be glad to know his son will be here to keep she and her siblings entertained with his mischief."

"Yeah," he mused. "I'm not sure about how happy  I am to know that she'll be glad to have a boy closer to her. I'd be more comfortable if it took a century before she becomes interested in them."

"Indeed."

Feathers

Running through personnel records on the bridge of the Arabella, Galdar came to an abrupt halt as he reached the file on Doctor Ryla Drett. Looking primarily at the skills of those who were leaving for the station, he was also having to consider the skills of those staying behind to see if they could step up to fill some of the newly created vacancies.

Lieutenant Commander Drett fell into neither of these categories of research. She hadn't left the ship and as CMO she wasn't about to step up to fill the shoes of another departing officer. Yet, as a long time friend of hers, Galdar found the temptation to peruse her record almost overwhelming. A lot of what was in it he probably knew already - he'd be amazed if he didn't find a number of references to himself in there, especially in the Academy chapters. Her name certainly featured in HIS file!

Ferengi were not known for their altruistic nature, nor for keeping themselves out of the affairs of others and Galdar was no exception. Yet, on occasion, he found he could resist what his family would say 'came naturally' and what he called his 'species imperatives'.

"Not today", he muttered as he flipped past her file on his PADD.

As she'd been slightly overstaffed on leaving the Vulcan shipyards, not everyone leaving the Arabella needed to be replaced but there was a balancing act to be played and after his initial uncertainty, Galdar found that it was one that he was starting to enjoy. Just because he hadn't gone into business didn't mean he didn't have a number of the skills he would have required for business and what he was doing now was nothing more than a variation on the prized Ferengi skill of matching product to customer. What his family had always accepted as lack of ability on his part was actually nothing more than a distinct lack of interest.

Galdar smirked as he moved onto the next departure in the list. Having not considered his family in years, they were now constantly at the forefront of his mind. His father's presence on Quirinus had seen to that. They hadn't run into each other since the day of the ball but the Lieutenant knew it was only a matter of time.

I know it's unnusual here but I don't have a podcast of my own.

X

Oryn smiled politely to the attendant as she filled his goblet with another serving of the jade colored ale. He eyes were fixed on dozen of holographic screens before him and the various displays of sections of the station and surrounding space. After appointing Sevryll to the position of station commander, he had removed himself from the day to day affairs of station operations to focus on the more pressing concerns of the empire.

Due to the efforts of the still missing Donatra, he had the fleets of the Imperial State at his command. Due to the efforts of his cousin and the Tal Shiar, he had gathered the loyalties of more than half of the remaining Star Empire fleets. The empire was stronger than it had been, but it was not whole.

Fleets that should have been assigned to relief matters had been forced into position to secure the boards from threats that wished to take advantage of their weakness. Allies within the Federation had given them the Seventh Fleet to help deal with their domestic matters, but even that was being stressed. The recent murder of Navesh had required the station to go into lock down. As ship that had been docked at the station at the time of the murder had been ordered to remain docked and that included the flagship of the fleet.

With many of their crews on leave to the station, several of the fleet had left, with less staff than they wanted, to continue the mission that they were here for. Officers were cut off from their ships and loved ones while the investigation team worked to solve the current crisis.

Oryn, for reason of his own, had refused to become involved in the work to solve the crime. His position on the former senators of the Empire had given him more than enough motive to see Navesh dead and it was a conflict that he did not need. There were also other secrets that he needed to protect. Were those secrets to see the light, it might put more people in danger. These secrets could not see the light of day until he had secured his position and his empire. Anything less would be death.

"Clear the throne room." Oyrn said with a wave of his hand and turn his attention to a specific image in the commercial sector. "Computer, enlarge screen in lower fourth quadrant and remove all other screens."

When the now open, but still in construction facility enlarged, Oryn smiled. There was still much work to be done on many parts of the recreational establishment, but the main bar and entertainment area had been opened for business for almost a full day. Even without the power behind his seat, the logic of the establishment had been sound. There were so many guests that were forced to remain aboard the station until the security measures were lifted and they needed a place to vent those frustrations.

Oryn and Cyra had public kept their distance during these last few days and only the use of his imperial command codes had allowed them to have any level of contact and privacy. She had never fully got around to telling him if she would stay, but she had not hesitated to establish the bar when it became clear that the guest would need a greater level of hospitality.

For now, when the station and the bar was at their peak of activity, all he could do was observe her from a distance and make sure that she was safe.