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What's Next, Skipper?

Posted on Mon Mar 4th, 2019 @ 10:57pm by Commander Leigh Jacobs & Lieutenant Commander Arturo S'Rohass & Senior Chief Petty Officer Coltan Xan

Mission: From the ashes...
Location: Temporary Quarters of Commander Leigh Jacobs
Timeline: Current (Before Marines have landed)

Arturo and Colt arrived at Leigh's temporary quarters on SB239 at roughly the same time. Colt hit the door chime and they waited for Leigh to respond.

"Any idea what's going to happen to us?" Arturo said. Fastest way to uncover any Starfleet secret, unless you were an enemy spy, was to ask a chief. There was very little in Starfleet a chief didn't know or couldn't find out.

"I've been asking around," Colt said. "General consensus is that Command is going to give us a new ship. Now that we know Robertson was a host to a parasitic enemy spy, Command is not taking his issues with Commander Jacobs as seriously. I just don't know what they're giving us. Hopefully something bigger."

"I have the same hope," Arturo said. "Even in the VIP quarters the Commander was nice enough to give Xiulan and I, things were extremely cramped."

Colt grinned. "Hard to get your grove on with that lovely wife of yours in that smallish walk in closet you were living in?"

"Very funny," Arturo said. "But yes. That didn't stop us, but it did make me glad I am familiar with Yoga."

Colt laughed. "Wow. You went there."

Arturo grinned. "You went there first!"

"TMI, Commander" Leigh said with a grin, shaking her head as the doors slid open. "Come in," she turned and walked back. "Can I get you two anything?"

"No, thank you, Captain," Arturo said as he entered.

"I'm good, Skip, thanks," Colt said, following Arturo in. "How's it going?"

"I've had better days, to be certain," Leigh replied. The past day had been filled with report filing and contacting next of kin of those who had passed during the recent battle. "Hopefully you two are staying out of trouble, I take it?"

Colt feigned shock. "Trouble? ME?!? Captain, I'm shocked, I tell you! Shocked! I am the very model of decorum at all times! It's not me you have to worry about! It's the Dapper Cat and the Ornery Blind Chick who you have to worry about getting into trouble!"

"I'm not dapper," Arturo said. "I'm elegant! On the other hand, Xiulan can be very ornery, and of course she is blind, so that wasn't an entirely inaccurate description."

Colt laughed. "You see, Captain! The Elegant Feline admits it!"

Arturo shook his head. "Alright, Colt, let's give our poor, downtrodden commanding officer a break. We were hoping you might have some news for us regarding out next assignment. Me'Shlaht might stop by as well if her meetings with Base Security don't keep her away. So, are they going to keep us together?"

Leigh turned and grinned. "I actually just got off the line with Admiral Viktor and it appears to be so," she walked to a nearby desk and picked up a PaDD before tossing it lightly at Arturo. "Seems we're all going home--a larger and more advanced home."

Arturo picked up the PaDD, looked at what was on it and whistled, which was an amusing thing to watch a bipedal feline do. He handed the PaDD to Colt. "A Luna Class! I've always wanted to fly one of those! Er...I know I'm the XO, but just maybe I shall sneak in a little helm time here and there! But it's just the right size, not too big, not too small!"

"Can I assume they're changing our mission profile, Skip?" Colt said. "A ship like that, we could do some serious exploring in that."

"And that we are," Leigh confirmed. "I haven't received any specific assignment as of yet but Viktor does know it involves deep space."

Colt laughed and Arturo grinned.

"Well that's not very specific," Colt said.

"No, it isn't," Arturo said. "There's a lot of 'deep space' in just about every direction. Look at all of the 'Deep Space' stations we have all over the place! Colt? It's time to get your Chief on."

"Copy that," Colt said. "Now that I know what ship they're giving us, maybe I can find out something more about what we're doing. After I leave here, I'll hit the NCO back channel and see what pops. Still, you must be getting lots of applications. Everyone wants to serve on a Luna Class."

"Indeed," Arturo said. "To explore strange worlds, to seek out new life and new civilizations, to boldly go where no being has gone before...and occasionally fight pirates and brigands! What a wonderful life we'll be leading!"

"Personally, I'll be happy to have real quarters and not have to sleep on a bunk," Leigh grinned.

"You and me, both, Captain," Arturo said. "And Xiulan. Of course, she uses me as a pillow no matter how big a bed we sleep on, but it's more comfortable if I'm not trying to avoid falling off of the bunk."

Arturo grew serious for a moment. "And the Gluak? Does Command believe the threat has been neutralized? Have anymore spies been uncovered?"

"Admiral Viktor informed me that a taskforce has been assembled and is enroute to the Rochanie System to set up talks with them, if possible. If not, then the system will be deemed off limits by the Federation as a quarantine area. All information we have on the Gluak has been turned over to Starfleet Command and Lougheed has informed me that Starfleet Intelligence is currently looking for Kalor," Leigh stated, crossing her arms. Just the name Kalor sparked anger within her. She would love nothing better than to personally strangle the life out of that damn traitor.

Colt sighed. "Remember, that wasn't really Kalor. She got...infected? Infested? Whatever. One of those things took her over. But that means she was taken over after we launched because I personally went around with security and checked everyone. And that means there were at least one of those little creepy crawly bastards running lose on the ship after we launched."

"I want the rest of our crew checked again, just to be certain there aren't anymore," Leigh replied. "And I'll recommend to Admiral Viktor that he do a sensor sweep of the Odyssey to make sure none of his crew are infected or there are anymore of those parasites hiding aboard."

"I assume we'll have corpsmen aboard the new ship," Colt said. "I'll check them all out as they are assigned and again before we check out the whole crew and then we'll continue to do that randomly, well, as randomly as possible, until you tell us to stop. The little bastards blend in to their host's biosigns. Can't always detect them with a bioscan. Sometimes you just have to look at the base of the skull, though, a Chief from the Odyssey said they found one that had burrowed in at the base of a host's spine. They think it probably took longer for the bug to get control of the host that way, but if they hadn't really fine tuned their sensors, they would have scanned the host, did a visual inspection of the base of the host's skull, seen nothing, and that would have been that until the host turned on their crewmates."

Leigh nodded. "Good. This almost reminds me of the paranoia that occurred in the Federation towards changelings before the start of the Dominion War."

Colt nodded. "That it does. Maybe we can adjust the biofilters on the transporters somehow? And the pest control systems in the vents and the Jeffries tubes?"

"I will talk with Xiulan about that," Arturo said. "She's feeling much better now. Did Admiral Viktor give you a time frame regarding when we will actually take possession of this wonderful new vessel?"

"Bright and early tomorrow morning," Leigh grinned. "All assigned officers and crew are to be on deck to get her supplied and ready for launch. I would say we should be ready to launch in about a week."

"Excellent," Arturo said. "If you could copy me on an personnel files you'd like me to review, I would appreciate it, as well as any other relevant information you think I should have access to." Arturo looked at his chronometer. "Well, I suppose we shouldn't take up too much more of your time, Captain. Will there be anything else?"

"No, go and take it easy. The nest several days are going to be busy," Leigh replied with a grin.

"Understood," Arturo said. "And thank you, Captain. Xiulan and I will have to take you to dinner sometime while we're on the station! Do you like Chinese food? There's an excellent restaurant here, very authentic, and Xiulan can make suggestions on what to eat! We'll be in touch!"

Arturo made his exit, but Colt lingered a moment. "How are you really doing, Commander?" he asked. "Nightmares? Night sweats? Any emotional moments that don't seem to make sense? I figure I better ask, because I'm guessing you haven't been to see a counselor since we got back. Not that I'm assuming any of that is going on, know the drill."

Leigh grinned at her COB. "I didn't know you were a counselor as well. But thank you for asking--I'm fine, if not stressed with everything." Losing a ship was never easy, especially your first one. Leigh only hoped it would be the last ship she would lose."

"They give us some mental health training actually," Colt said. "They figure Marines won't talk to counselors...not voluntarily, but they might talk to their Corpsmen who've shed the same blood in the same mud, so to speak. You ever need to talk, and you don't want to do it with a counselor, I'm here. And while I wouldn't kick you out of bed for eating crackers, as the old saying goes, I'm not hitting on you. I know, I know, a heterosexual Rigelian who isn't hitting on a woman! What will my mother say? But no. I'm just saying I'm here, whenever you need me."

Leigh chuckled at the comment. "Thank you, I appreciate it Senior Chief. I will remember that and I'm not sure if I feel I should be flattered or insulted that you're not hitting on me."

"Eh," Colt said. "Maybe after you figure out what the deal is with Lieutenant Lougheed. Don't look at me like that, ma'am! I'm the Chief of the Boat! Nothing that happens on this crew escapes me! Until then, I'm just going to keep working on figuring out how to make a real connection with Valywen, if it's possible for someone that smart to take an interest in a working man like me."

Leigh laughed. "You work? When?" she teased

Colt laughed. "Only when I can't get out of it, Captain, only when I can't get out of it. Okay, I guess I'll leave you to...whatever you were doing before we stopped by. Call me if you need me for something!"

"Will do, Chief," she replied, grinning as she watched her COB walk out of her office.


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