Thursday, January 20, 2011

[USS Charon] SD 241101.20 || Joint Log || "Duct Tape Mess" || Capt Shiarrael t'Rehu, Ens Landon Neyes

[USS Charon, Engineering]

"What a mess."  Shiarrael said as she stepped into engineering.  She had to sidestepped a pile of wiring that climb nearly to her knee level.  All around her technicians were scurrying with different pieces of equipment.  Her eyes moved to the deactivated warp core where the young trill Engineer was suspended along it's mid-rim by a thin cable that appeared to be hooked to the second level railings on either side side of engineering.  "It's still offline?"  Her tone was slightly incredulous as she began pacing below him like a predator waiting for it's prey to fall out of a tree.

"Captain!" Landon's concentration broken, he tried to turn to see her, and continue working simultaneously. Without the careful balance he'd been managing, the phase discriminator in his hand slipped. Neyes cringed and attempted to save it, but leaned too far back. As a result, his suspension torqued, and he ended up lowering down to her eye-level upside down. "Only for a little while longer." He smiled enthusiastically, his face reddening. "We've still got a few little bugs to work out, but yeah. It's still offline, to answer your question."

She looked up at the core- it seemed dead, the normal pulsating glowing heart of the Charon was silent.  Shiarrael had felt something different when she came aboard and now she knew what.  The Charon's heart was cold.  It saddened her, but at least it was only a temporary measure.  One that was necessary to repair the damage that had been inflicted upon the warhorse.

Landon kicked up with both legs and straightened himself upright, almost too easily. He hit a release against his belt and dropped to the floor, his boots hit the deck with a thud and he wiped a little sweat off his brow as he gave the Captain a little salute. "What brings you down here? I didn't scream or throw a fit, that I remember, did I?" He gave her a quizzical little look. She had been incredibly difficult to seal an audience with, and now here she was. Out of the blue.

"We have to depart."  Her eyes darted to the chrono on her wrist, "in twenty hours."  Shiarrael held up her hand and extended a finger towards the core "it will be difficult if that is not online. I want to make sure we will depart on time. It is absolutely imperative that we do. I hope you understand?"

Landon breathed in and looked off to the side for a moment. Up until now, only the Vulcans had been this kind of demanding. All his Captains had been hard-nosed women with distressing levels of anger pent up in them somewhere, and he wasn't exactly eager to experience a new version anytime soon. The damage to the Charon had been wide-scale, however, and this wasn't just some minor patched they were talking about. Charon had been literally rebuilt from the frame up in many places. They were finished with the actual replacing of the entire drive system and nacelles, but it was a matter of testing at this point. 'Working out the kinks' as one of the crewmen had put it.

"You want something like... actually working? Or just 'on'. I can probably get the warp drive online in less than five hours, diagnostics aside, but this is a brand-new factory condition core. We've barely got it unwrapped and we haven't tested it in open space yet, Cap. You do enjoy being alive, right? I know I do, if you don't, because stressing a lemon warp core would mean exposing ourselves to a very bright light show of bad." Sure, he'd taken every measure to ensure it wasn't going to explode, but one could never be too careful.

"I would prefer both- but if 'on' is the only option when the deadline comes, it will suffice."  A smirk appeared on her face "if it does explode- well, we likely would be dead before we realized what happened.  So there is nothing to lose."  She reached into her pocket "in any case- if death is not incentive enough, perhaps this will be, you are officially promoted to Lieutenant Commander.  This is only a field promotion- but it will be permanent if you can manage to keep this ship in one piece. Even if it means you have to hold it together with your bare hands."

"It's really all about-," Neyes was about to retort with something snarky when he stopped in his tracks. "Wait, ...what."
His face went blank for a second as her words hit him. The steely blue cores of his eyes looked from her smirking face to her hands. The solid and black pips rested there. Engineers started whispering and talking amongst each other as they noticed why the Captain was in their midst. He suddenly felt very naked. The look of shock in his expression had to be as obvious as the black of space.

"I hear Starfleet only keeps you until you die if you get 'commander' in your title." He smiled. "So either way I think I'm hooked." Gathering his composure he bowed his head with the genuine honor that only someone with his lifetimes of experience could truly understand. She was giving him so much more than a promotion, it was his self respect. She was giving him back his pride, free of it's wounds from the last few years. Landon didn't really know what to say.

"Thanks." He managed. The tightening in his throat made him stiffen to cover it up.

"Do not thank me.  As I said- the permanence will require some effort on your part.  Though, I guess it doesn't matter.  If you fail we likely will be dead and those symbols will mean nothing."  Shiarrael smirked "so it would be advisable to make sure the core is fully operation by the time of our departure."

It was quite a jump in truth, he thought. True, Landon was a Lieutenant JG once before. Before Rob was lost, before Neyes tried to save him. It felt like she was sparing him the protocol and time required for him to slowly climb to his previous status. In some ways he felt oddly cheated out fo the struggle, but he knew himself well enough to know that this was really the only way he'd want it. Even though it felt like yesterday, Landon knew it had been a great deal of time since he'd been demoted. The year just seemed to slip past him in ways he couldn't remember. "Permanence or no, still. Thank you, Captain."

"Now, Commander- do you require anything to help you along.  While I would rather not have anymore aboard my ship- the Vulcan government has offered us the assistance of their military technicians in getting the Charon fully operation."  She grimaced momentarily at the mention of the Vulcans but her smile quickly returned.

"Yeah. The Vulcans. I think they've done their part at this point. They refuse to waste their time on some of the more minor details, but insist on leaving instructions for what to do once their gone." Landon rubbed a hand beneath what he knew were dark bags under his eyes. "I think they just want to get away from Savant. We'll be ready to leave on time. No worries." The image of many more hours of overtime suddenly popped into his head. Prepping the engines for launch in that little space of time would mean back-scheduling many of the other final repairs and diagnostics, which meant doubling the amount of time he'd be spending in Engineering in the next few days.

Get away from Savant?  So even the Vulcans are weary of the thing.  Shiarrael nodded her head approvingly.  No more Vulcans- save the ones they had already inherited.  "Good, I will leave you to your work Commander.  I don't expect to return here until the Charon is well under way, and if I do..."

Landon's brow shot up as the shape of a realization became apparent on his face. He held up a finger, as if to put her on hold for a moment while he quickly ducked into his newly rebuilt office and back out again. "If you have time...", he said, grinning like a little boy, as the officer produced a diagnostic PADD, "These are the Charon's updated specs. Yes, I tweaked, but I don't think you'll mind the perks. Of course we could have a meeting to cover all the changes since the renovations, but I thought you'd like to have a copy for yourself beforehand.

"Also, since the ship is so widely run by..." he paused trying to think of the proper way to say it, "... your people, I had Romulan designed consoles installed in select locations. Including the bridge's command chair. It can be toggled, of course. I'm sure the last thing you'd want to stare at after taking command would be Trill symbols. So I extended that courtesy to anyone who would relieve you." He smiled.

Accepting the PADD Shiarrael took a short moment to quickly skim the information listed, a smile crept  into her expression as she looked up at the Trill engineer.  It disturbed her to know that the young face looking at her held centuries of knowledge "while I appreciate your effort Commander, please return the command chair console to it's normal specifications.  We should not make it easier for 'my people' to take the ship. I'm sure many would enjoy it, along with my head to decorate it."

A little off-put and surprised by her order, Landon pursed his lips. The new consoles would be easy enough to replace, but he'd tried to make it a gift for the Romulan crew. A gift he'd hoped would alleviate the tension they were all certain to feel after this latest mission. He mentally bit his tongue before making a comment about her plans and/or ability to keep the ship from falling again. Better for his restraint, he simply nodded and let her hold her prerogative. "Yeah, ok. You got it. Your head is most definitely not welcome anywhere on my bulkheads except your shoulders." He looked up and to the side, rethinking his choice of words. She probably wasn't the type to want to share. "That is of course, YOUR bulkheads." His voice accidentally belied the minor twinge of sarcasm.

Her eyes slightly narrowed at the joke but she simply shook her head "continue on, Commander."  With a slight nod of her head Shiarrael twisted on her heels and made her way out of Engineering.

Landon clapped his hands together and beamed. "Bare hands it is."

=/\= END LOG =/\=

Capt Shiarrael t'Rehu
Commanding Officer

Lt. Cmdr Landon Neyes
Chief Engineer