Posted on Tuesday, 2 June 2020 - 10:52am by Lieutenant JG Surev
Location: USS Fontana | Main Engineering
Timeline: 2393 MD 13+
The old Engineering officer had left the ship. She wasn't surprised but she had been when she found out the new CEO would be a Vulcan. Her life, it seemed, would be surrounded by Vulcans. She had been happy on Vulcan. She'd even missed it as I was the only home that she'd known but since the accident where she'd not been back. As she paced the little room she caught her reflection and stopped. She missed her Cardassian features. Because of the accident she'd had to have reconstructive surgery and rather then try the Vulcans had made her fully Bajoran. She missed her old face.
Shaking her head she continued to pace. She was early to this meeting. She was surprised when Henderson had recommended her to update the incoming CEO but gladly took on the job. Shop she could talk. Vulcans were very...to the point and she liked that. She decided to sit down lest she put a hole in the floor.
Starfleet as a whole, Surev reflected, could rival even the strictest of Vulcans in their rigid adherence to practically everything in life. And that meant there were protocols to be observed. Reporting in to the Captain, a formality that carried with it acceptance of his position on the ship, and processing through Operations, for room assignment, and Medical since apparently physicians did not trust each other to do satisfactory work. He was Vulcan and discipline was something he embraced even when it was somewhat illogical. Logic and large organizations did not always coexist.
With all that done, he was ready to find the one place where he knew he was needed. Engineering. Lean, as were most Vulcans of his acquaintance, Surev was not overly tall nor was he overly Vulcan in his appearance -- at least so he'd been told in his Academy days. For one thing, his hair was cut in a layered style that stayed off his face and for another, his eyes, black and gleaming with intelligence, also tended to leak a bit of his natural curiosity about life and experiences. The latter was something he strove to eliminate though it was possible, given his creative nature and his late start on embracing a life devoted to logic, that there would always be ... leaks.
He entered Engineering and paused just inside the main doors to merge the perspective he knew from his study of specifications and plans with what he saw before him.
Eyelaya looked up just as Surev walked in. She took in his uniform and rank and the point of his ears. She rushed over. "Hello!" She stopped herself from taking his hand. "You must be my Vulcan....that is the Vulcan I was waiting for....that is the Chief Engineer!"
"I am Surev," he said, dipping his head as he said his name, "newly assigned as Chief Engineer. So, I suppose I am, at least in that respect, your Vulcan." One eyebrow arched elegantly as he cocked his head slightly to one side. "Am I then the only Vulcan among the Engineering staff?"
"Yup! I studied on Vulcan though. Finished the Engineering Academy but not Vulcan." She shrugged. "I was told to bring you up to speed. First stop," she paused. "First stop is Bella!"
Questions lined up in his mind so he stopped and waited for that to register with her. "I have questions," he said. "The first of which is ... who are you and what is your position in Engineering?"
"Oh! Sorry. I'm Chief Petty Officer Eyelaya. I'm an Engineering officer. The outgoing CEO asked me to bring you up to speed on what's been done, what's had to be done, and what Ops is assisting us with." She smiled.
"Eyelaya," he repeated, the sound of her name rolled across his tongue, settled into a mind that seldom forgot. "Now, who is Bella?"
She grinned and clapped her hands. "Come with me." She lead him over to the pulsing engine. "That is Bella. I know CEO's like to name their own engines but she seemed like a Bella."
"Amsetri tre, Bella," Surev said as looked at the engine. It was not logical and yet, it was. Names provided a common frame of reference and facilitated communication. Some might call this an engine, others a slipstream drive, and still others, the QSD. All were as valid as Bella providing everyone used the same term. And being who he was, a question immediately popped into his mind, a logical outgrowth of the last. "And do you give these names to all of the equipment on the ship?"
"What would be weird. Although I believe that every ship engine or shuttle or ship has it' own soul, it's own way of being to be respected." She shrugged. "Maybe that's weird too."
"I have heard it said," Surev replied, "that a ship is also a member of the crew. It is not a ... scientific ... viewpoint and the logic not readily discernible. And yet, I have meditated upon the concept." He paused a moment to reflect on the words she had chosen. "Weird implies judgement. It is not for me to judge your philosophy as I do not yet comprehend the logic upon which it is based."
"Ohhhh you are Vulcan to the core. I could just kiss you! I miss working with Vulcans."
"Have you spent much time among Vulcans," he asked as he moved to the nearest monitoring console, his dark gaze taking in the readouts before returning to look at her, focus his attention on her and her reply.
"I did my engineering study there at the Vulcan Engineering Academy. It was my home. I loved it." Until the accident of course. She shrugged. "I haven't visited since I left though. I miss it."
"Have you visited T'Ralor," Surev asked. "It is a vast nature preserve with many greenhouses and gardens and pathways." He paused for a moment, his mind hovering over the idea of missing something. "I carry the memory of that place with me. It is not the same as standing there but it is often an image I use when I begin meditation." His head cocked slightly to one side, he continued. "Why have you not returned?"
"I have been there once. It's beautiful. My favourite was the gardens of Surak." She paused. He was Vulcan and went the heart of things. She sighed. "There was an accident and I spent a year in recovery. My time at the hospital was...less then ideal." She shrugged. "Kind of soured things for me."
"My parents work in T'Ralor so I grew up there," Surev said. "Ideal and hospitals are not words to be combined even for Vulcans. Required perhaps and occasionally essential but not ideal."
She smiled. "Well then. Shall I tell you what works and what is still broken?"
"Tell me," Surev repeated, one eyebrow arching upward slightly. "Yes. As I have not yet had access to the Master List and Repair Schedules, that would be best. You may begin."
"Alright then! So we got sensors so that's good. Our engines are touch and go. They work one minute and start to send out some pretty horrific sounds the next. Our life support is functioning again, yay us, we've got power on half the ship. Replicators are acting up all over the place an we've got a hull that's being put back together. Some quarters are loosing gravity and that's about it." She sighed. "Oh and don't order tea from the replicator...unless you want to be stuck in the bathroom reliving all your meals for the last week. We should fix that. Tea is popular."
"I need more," Surev said. "Work assignments and current status of the repair efforts would be a good start. Do you know this as well or shall we consult the Engineering Console?"
"Actually I have a full report for you on the current schedules and repair updates. The old CEO's items were just removed yesterday and I put the information on your desk." She smiled.
"Then that is my next stop," Surev said. They were walking now, he with PADD in hand, maintaining a slight distance between them. "To assess the current situation and then fit myself in where most needed. What will you be doing?"
She sighed. "I have been assigned to taking care of crew complaints. Replicators, sonic showers." She said sadly. She could so so much more but Gloris made the duty rosters when J'loni left and he, for some reason, hated her.
Surev stopped and turned toward her. His was the ear of a musician and he heard the discordant note, the song beneath the song, so to speak. It was not Vulcan; to a Vulcan, there was the work and at the end, it was satisfactory or it was not. But he heard the note and spoke to the unspoken which was also not entirely Vulcan. "If you can find me an acceptable cup of tea and give me ... twenty minutes ... I will have a new schedule prepared." He arched one eyebrow slightly. "I make no promises; only that I will make my own assessment."
She smiled. This one was perceptive. "Actually I'm addicted to Vulcan tea. I have a manual stash I make. I'll go make some." She pointed to the office door. "That's the big office. And ... for the record I'm okay with crew complaints I just dislike being forced to wash isolinear chips with a toothbrush or dust them when there is no dust on them." She shook her head. "I'll be back." She turned and headed off in search of some tea.
[Office of the Chief Engineer]
It took only a few minutes to realize that the work schedule was weighted more toward favoritism than optimal performance. It took longer to evaluate strengths and weaknesses of the individual and where those strengths were best suited. Gloris would no longer be involved in management of the department and would instead, assume Eyelaya's duties. The two main priorities were power and engine. He constructed small teams, pairing the experienced with the less experienced, on staggered shifts that took into account the stamina and reserves of the individuals involved. With proper turnover, the work could continue shift to shift without the inefficiencies introduced by exhaustion.
Eyelaya came back to his office no surprised that his door was open. She placed a coaster on the table and his tea. "Try that. It's my own blend of various Vulcan herbs." It had a spice and sweetness to it that she hoped he liked.
"Lesek," Surev said as he accepted the tea and raised the cup to his lips. The aroma was subtle with a complexity that he could appreciate and he took a cautious sip before placing the cup, centered, on the coaster. The concept of praise for one's efforts was neither given nor expected; and yet, through his time in Starfleet, he had discovered that many worlds required independent verification of fact. To a Vulcan, there would be no need to state an obvious fact; to a human, appreciation was expected. As a Chief, he was expected to meet the needs of those under his authority. Finding the balance between his own beliefs and what was needed was never easy. "It is reminiscent of the Spice tea I drank at home though with something else added."
"Nutmeg actually." She said proudly. "I'm glad you are here sir. This is going to be fun."
"I have posted the new schedule," Surev said. "You will need to update Gloris on your current workload before joining my team. I want the engine repaired and worked properly. It will be a difficult job." He took another sip of tea, savoring the taste, before adding, "Perhaps you will re-evaluate your choice of descriptors."
"No Sir! I'd love a hand making Bella run again." She grinned. "Thank you sir!" She paused and gave the proper Vulcan split fingered salute. "See you soon!" She hurried out to get to work.
Amsetri tre: Your presence honors us