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The CEO Reports In

Posted on 05 Jan 2014 @ 2:11pm by Captain Harvey Geisler & Lieutenant Harper Dane
Edited on on 05 Jan 2014 @ 2:23pm

Mission: New Voyages
Location: Captain's Ready Room
Timeline: December 26, 2387 || 1530 hours

Waist-length, dark as night hair pulled back into a high ponytail, dressed neatly in uniform, Harper Dane made her way onto the USS Black Hawk. Engineers tended to be possessive of the ships they served on and Harper was no exception. She had cared for and about the Berlin, mended its wounds, listened to its rhythms, and made sure that the ship was ready to do what a starship must, protect and defend its crew. She walked down the corridor, one slender hand trailing along the wall, headed for the nearest Turbolift.

She entered, pleased to note that the lift doors responded to her combadge as they should, and said in her softly throaty voice, "Deck One." While others might think about the meeting to come, Harper focused instead on the way the turbolift rose and nodded in satisfaction. She exited onto the Bridge, quiet still as any Bridge usually was when docked, and nodded to the deck officer who nodded in return and went back to the datapad he was reading.

A few short steps, her smoky gray eyes taking in the displays as she walked, brought her to the Captain's Ready Room door. She pressed the chime and waited for a response.

"Petty Officer Surok has it where it counts, Commander!" protested Chief Sikes as the chime resonated in the Ready Room. "Good technical skills, a lot of potential..."

"But you're telling me he lacks too much personality?" Harvey was grateful for the interruption as this meeting had gone much longer than he intended. The Deck Chief had retired and disembarked just before Harvey assumed command, leaving a void on the Flight Deck. The Black Hawk lacked strong leadership there, and they were going to need it while they carried a myriad of support craft into the Gamma Quadrant. He'd have to find someone on board for now to fill the role as it was unlikely Starfleet could find a qualified replacement in time.

"Come in!" Harvey called out to the door before it had a chance to sound its chime again. Not looking at the direction of the door and instead focusing on the a Chief in front of him, Harvey continued, "Surely there's someone on this ship who can keep our shuttles and fighters flying."

Harper entered, looking from one man to the other, and smiled, a slight upward curve of the lips coupled with a decided sparkle in her eyes, that on her home world would have been a prelude to a very different type of greeting. Still, Starfleet was not Deltan, more the pity that, and so instead, she clasped her hands behind her back. taking in the body language between the two as only a Deltan could, and cocked her head slightly to one side, "Am I interrupting something, Sir?"

Harvey was startled to hear a feminine voice that belonged to someone other than his yeoman. He looked up to reply only to be stunned to see it belonged to an officer, and an attractive one at that.

After quickly regaining his composure, Harvey replied, "Yes, but a welcome interruption indeed. Chief Sikes and I have been reviewing the enlisted roster in vast detail for more than an hour." To the chief, Harvey added, "Let's pick this up at 0800 tomorrow morning."

"Aye," replied Sikes, eager for a break as well. He picked up his two PADDs and vacated the ready room, leaving the Captain to meet with the new arrival.

Harvey gestured to one of the seats in front if him, the one not recently used by the Chief of the Boat, inviting the lieutenant to sit if she wanted. "What can I do for you, Lieutenant?"

Harper sat down, resisting the urge to sit in any number of unorthodox ways, as was her usual practice, as she said, "Well, Sir, its more a matter of what I can do for you. I'm your new Chief Engineer."

Instantly his mind raced back to the Senior Staff manifest he reviewed earlier. "Welcome aboard, Ms. Dane. Tell me, what's your first impression of the Black Hawk?"

"I only just arrived," Harper said. She mentally reviewed what she'd seen so far and while doing so, lost in thought, she forget and tucked one leg up beneath her. "So I haven't had a chance to have a good look, Sir. That's my next stop. Right now, about all I can say is that I think me and the Black Hawk are going to get along just fine."

"Excellent," Harvey replied with a smile, well, more of a smirk, really. He wasn't quite sure what it was, but Lieutenant Dane had an interesting aura surrounding her, something that made him feel a little more relaxed. "From what I've learned of the ship thus far, she hasn't entered her teens, but the crew has kept her up very well."

He clasped his hands, placed them on the desk and leaned forward. "We don't have our orders yet, but I do know we'll be going on a few assignments deep into the Gamma Quadrant. Please make sure we have everything we need. I'd also appreciate your input on the conditions of the flight deck. We'll be ferrying quite a few shuttles, fighters and the like for a while."

"Can do, Sir," Harper said with a slow smile that started deep in her Deltan soul and ended shining out of her eyes. Getting to know the Black Hawk which, like any good engineer, she would come to consider as hers was her first order of business. Way before setting up her quarters and finding the most decadent meal she could on the station. "I'll be reviewing all of the ship's systems but I can start on the flight deck. Have there been any reports of problems that I should know about?"

"Just the usual report that supplies aren't moving as quickly as they should be," Harvey replied. "I've already intervened on the ship's behalf with the station's Operations Chief." He paused for a moment to examine the engineer's smile, then added, "You look very eager for someone who's about to spend a couple months in the Gamma Quadrant."

She thought about that for a moment, trying to frame the way she looked at things into a few words, and then finally said, "I'm Deltan, Sir. I was taught that life is an adventure, a series of experiences. Sort of a banquet. Everything I do, see, touch, and feel - its all part of the richness of life. So for me, the Gamma Quadrant is a whole new set of experiences. How could I be anything less than eager for that?" She cocked her head to one side as her ponytail slid along her arm in a languid caress while she regarded him with curiosity. "Is it different for you? Do you see going to the Gamma Quadrant as a bad thing, Sir?"

Harvey's smirk faded as he evaluated the questions. For the last few years, his career had been about orders, not necessarily himself. In fact, assuming command of the Black Hawk was an extension of that. He hadn't stopped to consider the gravity of this new change. His eyes moved away from Lieutenant Dane and laid to rest on the picture of Alison. "An opportunity for a new life, I suppose," he answered truthfully, still looking at the picture. "I've been looking too long into the past, holding on to things I should've released years ago." He looked back to Harper as he removed his hands from the desk and leaned back, not terribly far, but to sit straight in his chair. "Time for a new beginning."

"Filled with the richness of life, Sir," Harper added. "Like now. Here we are at Deep Space 9 and there are all these amazing things to see. An artisan who works in crystalline formations that sing when the breeze touches them ... a little shop with sweets from a hundred different worlds ... and even a restaurant just off the promenade that's run by a Risan couple. I've heard wonderful things about the place."

The smirk returned as Harper spoke. It became suddenly clear why he felt relaxed. Alison shone through Harper's eyes and words with the same excitement and zeal he remembered so clearly. Had she still lived today, he was sure they'd be walking the Promenade while her amazement dared to be so contagious.

Harper's last thought about the Risan restaurant sounded awfully like an invitation. But she was not Alison, and he would have to remember that. For the first time, he had a ship and a crew. He wasn't sure yet what kind of captain he wanted to be, but if there was anything he learned from his previous COs, it was to develop strong bonds with his crew to bring out the best in each one and himself.

"Perhaps a stroll of the Promenade will be in order before we leave," he commented. "For now, I'm sure you have a lot to do. Welcome aboard, Chief Engineer Dane."

"Thank you, Sir," Harper said rising to her stand before him. "Glad to be here." She turned and headed back out onto the Bridge, already lost in thought as she organized what she needed to get done in the next few hours.

Harvey smiled, watching her leave. Even after the doors closed, leaving him alone in his office, his smiled remained. So far, his command crew was coming together nicely.

 

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