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A Murky View

Posted on 02 Jun 2016 @ 8:04am by Lieutenant Parisa Rykov DCS & Captain Harvey Geisler

Mission: Outbreak
Location: USS Black Hawk | Deck 1 | Captain's Ready Room
Timeline: MD 6 || 1500 hours

The last time Doctor Parisa Rykov had a deep desire to speak to the Captain about several concerns and reservations that she was having in addition to a list of over a dozen demands, Rykov was met with the ultimate barricade, the man's Yeoman. She was an excellent Captain's block, preventing unnecessary disruptions and diversions from the Captain's busy schedule. The Yeoman was the best deterrent in derailing a junior officer or insignificant enlisted crewmember's attempt to pester the Captain. Back then, Rykov was just a Diagnostic Engineer. She had several people to report to before she could just approach the Captain.

Now, that line was much shorter and more direct if need be. She was the head of the Engineering Department and a member of the Captain's senior staff. In her department, she reported to nobody. All of the engineers aboard worked for her and either reported to her or to their immediate supervisors. When it came to business aboard the Black Hawk, Rykov now reported to the First Officer though sometimes she could approach the Captain if need be.

Coming off the turbolift with a PaDD in hand and pouring out onto the Bridge, Rykov was in a fresh uniform with her engineering work jacket on, some tools poking out of the front pocket. She was on duty and she meant business. She was bound to see the Captain and she was not going to get Captain blocked by Senior Chief Petty Officer Rasputin, the Captain's personal Yeoman. Rykov would not be 'taking a number' and waiting. Instead, she noted that the Captain was not in his chair and immediately proceeded to stand outside his Ready Room and ring the chime.

Hunched over the sink in his washroom, Harvey splashed some water onto his face. When he looked up to face himself in the mirror, he expected to not see the face that had suffered from not having sleep over the last few days. Not only was he disappointed, he found himself looking worse than before.

He was about to sigh when his thought process was interrupted by the sound of the door chime. Harvey paused, uncertain if he had an appointment, or if it was Yeoman Rasputin with a new stack of reports. It was more likely it was an unscheduled visit from a member of the senior staff, which is what he expected at this point.

Harvey splashed some more water on his face and managed to collect some of his composure. "Come!" he ordered as he turned to leave the washroom.

She entered the Captain's Ready Room and gave a simple nod. "It's nice to see you in better shape and looking more yourself" she said before taking a seat in the man's office. The Captain's most recent close encounter with Consortium corruption was on her mind as was the time that she found the man wrapped in nothing but a towel during a brief power outage on a few decks.

This is better? thought Harvey, finding a small measure of amusement in her comment. He picked up the fresh cup of chamomile he'd left sitting in the replicator tray shortly before entering the washroom. Harvey did immediately note how quickly Rykov had taken a seat. If he knew anything about her by this point, it's that she always had something on her mind and an objective to accomplish. What he didn't know was what brought her into his office today. "What's on your mind, Lieutenant?" Harvey asked as casually as he could as he approached his chair.

Rykov wiggled a bit in the chair finding her comfort level. She was more used to standing in Engineering behind a console or crawling through innards of the starship. When on duty and in her uniform, sitting was a rarity. It either took place the few minutes in the day that she actually spent in her office, or the times that she worked from the Engineering station on the Black Hawk's Bridge. She held the PaDD before her eyes and skimmed it briefly, before setting it down and responding to the man. "I don't mean to intrude on your day, but I wanted to speak to you personally before we traversed too far" she said swiftly. "As I understand it, the Black Hawk is part of the 9th Task Force's Belvedere task group and will be operating primarily in the Gavaran sector. What I came to see you about was from the stance of being your Chief Engineer. As Chief Engineer for the starship, I have delved into some reading of log entries and reports from starships that have traversed this region of space. Needless to say, I have some slight concerns."

Harvey raised an eyebrow at her last statement. "Slight concerns?" he asked a heartbeat before indulging in a sip of the lukewarm tea. "The Consortium has run amok in Task Force Nine and all you have is slight concerns?"

Rykov glared at the Captain. "The Consortium running amok is Your problem, Captain, not mine. Ultimately, yeah, they are my problem, but you and Kos sit in the big chairs. My primary focus is the starship" replied Rykov. She had a whole counter speech that she was prepared to make but Harvey acted.

He quickly held a hand up to allow himself to resume speaking. "Forgive me, lieutenant," he said with a sigh. "It's been a rough day. Yes, we are a part of Belvedere. Unity has discovered that some of Belvedere has fallen to the Consortium, but the affiliation of the Dark Horse is still an unknown. Therefore, until this crisis is over, I doubt we'll see much outside of the sectors outside of Starbase Unity."

"Noted" she replied sharply. "However, in the event that we do venture out into space a bit more, I've taken liberty to prepare myself and my personnel for what's out there in these parts" said Parisa crisply. "The Black Hawk does not need to venture far to encounter some dangers, Captain, and I don't mean to Consortium. The Obatta Cluster and The Haydn Nebula. Do you know how many starship have been reported missing out here in the few years? Just a few hours ago, I was reading reports from a starship that just up and vanished several months ago. New species to encounter means new potential dangers" added Rykov.

"It's the Gamma Quadrant," Harvey said all too casually. "It's an explorer's dream and a security officer's nightmare." His eyes narrowed and he leaned forward in his chair. "Which side have you taken? Dream or nightmare?"

Rykov sighed. "Look, I did not come up here to knock on your door to preach the Xenophobic Gospel of Paranoia. What I came up here for was to let you know that you can count on me and Engineering to be ready for the Consortium or for whatever we may encounter out here" she said reassuringly. "On a personal note, I also came up here to see how you were holding up" she said with a peculiar gentleness.

Harvey nodded at her assurances, but her inquiry about his well being was... surprising. "Strange," he confessed, speaking his mind. "I never pegged you for someone who concerned herself with another's well being."

"Sorry to disappoint" she said sarcastically with a bit of a huff. "As much as I enjoy toting around the rumors that I breathe fire and bite off the heads of my engineers, I do from time to time have the well fare and well being of others in mind" added Rykov. "This ship cannot run without you and I most certainly would not be so....tolerated by some other Commanding Officer" she admitted.

For a moment there, Harvey had to remind himself that the woman on the other side of the desk did have Romulan blood. He did not, nor would he ever, hold that against her or allow it to develop a prejudice. "The ship is tense," he replied to her earlier question about him. "First the Consortium, now some strange outbreak on a pleasure planet. It seems nearly impossible to catch a break."

She let out a bit of a cackle. "That is why we are trained to think on our feet" she said confidently. "Whatever comes our way, Captain, this crew will overcome it."

"Of that I have no doubt," Harvey agreed. Sighing, he leaned back in his chair and lifted his tea. "And, I have a sad feeling that this is only the beginning. Something much more worse is to come, I bet."

Rykov nodded and smirked. "Are you sure you aren't part Romulan, Captain? That's a rather grim and paranoid outlook on things, but damn well accurate I think" she said with a heavy sigh. "The Consortium can kiss my ass."

Harvey smirked and chuckled, imagining that literal event. He doubted it would end well for any agent. "No matter what the brass decides, Lieutenant, you can rest assured that I'm not going to allow it to stay accurate for long."

"Correct me if I am wrong, Captain, but last time you ignored brass or wanted to go against their wishes, they were Consortium wishes and you ended up shot with a phaser" replied Rykov. "This Consortium problem needs to end and the sooner the better."

"Agreed," Harvey simply replied. Though the physical wound had been healed, the emotional trauma and the nervous echo had yet to disappear. "And if I hadn't disobeyed, who knows what Gavara would have have done with those weapons. I would have preferred an outcome that didn't end with phaser fire, but the results were worth it. The problem will end." And if Harvey had to sacrifice his uniform for it, so be it.

Rykov nodded "I do not disagree with you there. In fact, I am quite pleased that you did do what you did. Sometimes, I just wish the Federation weren't so damned peaceful. If this Consortium shit happened in the Empire, the Romulan's would have seen to it all Consortium were executed."

"The Consortium's activation phrase was Pity is treason." Harvey frowned. "And treason is exactly what this is. I'll bet you Terlexa and whomever else was involved in this won't even receive the death penalty. Someone else will make their heads roll before Starfleet gets their hands on them."

Rykov raised her hand "I'd love to volunteer" she said somewhat seriously. "They screwed Kos over, messed with Bast, and shot you. That is enough to really piss me the hell off" she added crossing her arms. "I wouldn't mind getting a little revenge on the Consortium."

Harvey chuckled. Her enthusiasm certainly showed, but Harvey couldn't help but wonder what else was motivating her. "You'll get it soon enough," he told her. "Just as soon as we're done here."

"Make it so" she said sharply with a small smile. "If we have nothing else to discuss, I have some work to catch up on and two engineers to restrain myself from strangling."

The captain nodded his approval. He had nothing else for her, after all, she came to him. "We're short handed enough," he cautioned before she could leave. "Try not to strangle."

"I'll try, but no guarantees" she said sharply.


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