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Investigating the XO

Posted on Tuesday, 19 October 2021 - 6:24am by Lieutenant Haru Hernandez & Lieutenant Alex Kingsley

Mission: Operation: Mirror of Madness
Location: Ready Room | USS Standing Bear
Timeline: 2394


Haru had been feeling a little better this morning. Over the course of the last few days he'd been able to move more and more and the physio was helping. He would not leave the chair until he was 100% and that was a ways to come. Now, as he wheeled it to the door of the ready room, he thought that it was the final test.

He stopped by the door unhooked the holders, lowered the hover chair and rang the chime.

“Come in!”

Haru pushed himself up out of his chair as her voice filtered through. His legs were shaky and he had to grasp the wall but they were holding.

Ending the comm link as the door chime rang out, Lieutenant Kingsley turned in her seat as the doors opened to admit Haru. Knowing why he was here made her welcome to him forced, for he wasn’t just dropping by. It wasn’t a social call, it was part of the ‘investigation’ into the ship’s absentee first officer.

The door slid open and her voice carried through telling him that Mac had indeed told her and she indeed was ready. He took a breath and crossed the threshold. His legs shook and they hurt like a bitch but hell they were holding. Haru, pale and sweaty, ambled into the office. "Hi." He said, his voice strained.

“Hi. Mac said you’d be stopping by,” she told him as she gestured to the opposite chair. “Let’s get this over with, shall we? Do you want something to drink?”

He dropped in the chair like a lead weight. It would allow him to rest a little. Perhaps this little exercise was all the physio he needed today. "Water would be good."

Abandoning her seat she replicated a slightly chilled glass of water and set it down on the desk before she sat. “So what do you need to ask me?”

Haru studied her a bit. There was something he couldn't put his finger on but then he knew she was living in her own hell. "First," he said. "How are you doing with all this. The video of Soral's speech keeps playing and...there are consequences Starfleet hasn't seen."

“I’m doing okay,” she assured him, “Mac has already done the whole how are you talk, I want to focus on what I need to do here and now. Apparently that includes helping with you investigation of Soral.”

Haru, at that moment, looked exhausted. "Yeah...not my idea. I had to file the report." He said but looked sick about it.

“It’s done now so just ask me whatever you need to ask me,” Alex sighed, leaning back in her seat as she dimmed the lights a fraction. “Paperwork gives me headaches.”

"Yeah I hear you." Haru said. "Listen...I'm sorry. This is the last thing that I wanted."

“You did what you had to do,” Alex shrugged. “Let’s get this over with.”

He gives a nod. "Tell me about Soral, in general. What do you see him like, his mood, his disposition, etc... from when you two first met up until let's say last month."

“Soral values family, and his privacy,” Alex told him, “that has not changed. He has never failed to put this ship and crew first even when his own health was at risk. As for his moods… he is Vulcan. I have moods. He… tolerates them. Anything more personal than that is kind of crossing a line. We love each other and our bond is as strong as it has ever been.”

"Excellent. SO, taking the last...let's say month into account. How has that changed?"

Alex shrugged, “he was perhaps more reclusive. Meditating more. He was going to Vulcan to vote but also to meet with the Healers. For a time he thought about heading to Risa to be with the children after the vote but I talked him out. It was typical Soral, putting our children ahead of his own well-being. I know Hamura feels there was something dark about him - whatever that means - but I did not see anything like that.”

"I see... Okay more reclusive. Do you think the strain of the last... months has gotten to him? What did he say about the healers? what kind of healing?"

“He wouldn’t give me details. But that is nothing new. He is … overprotective. It’s our favourite thing to argue about,” Alex confided. “I respected it. He always tells me eventually, usually. Perhaps Dr Rose can give you details.”

"He's on my list but there are things that a spouse notices that nobody else does. Tell me about the last away mission. Hamura said that the biggest change was then."

“The crashed ship? There isn’t much to tell, we were not there for long. Soral and Ade stayed in the ops area, the rest of us went to check out the ship and try to recover data. Ade came to help so we could get back to the ship.

Soral was... in extra Vulcan mode. He does that sometimes. He ordered everyone to submit their reports and went to his office. I didn’t see much of him. I was on a different shift pattern. We are used to it. He was meditating more, but again, he does that.”

"Alright. What was the away mission like. Did you, as science officer, pick up anything strange on the ship?"

“No,” she shook her head, “ and all my data was submitted with my mission report. We did full scans initially and then passive scans while we worked.”

"Okay." Haru sighed. "What about his mood. How has it been as of late, anything drastic in the change department?"

“Nothing more than I already said,” she told him.

He sighed. "Why do I get the feeling you really don't want to cooperate?"

“He is my husband,” Alex replied fiercely. “If he had physically hurt someone, sabotaged the ship... something concrete then this investigation would be warranted but he didn’t. He told me nothing about his plans to speak or how he would vote. I was as surprised as anyone.”

"That I believe. Do your really think that the man you loved, the man you described to me would do something like that. Someone who put the ship, the crew, the family he loved ahead of himself?"

“Family means everything to him,” Alex told him, “he also cares about Vulcan. But family first. And if us being together as a family means leaving Starfleet then... I will have to make my peace with that. Because I will always support my husband.”

Haru studied her silently. His eyes narrowing. "'ve gotten more … confident and decisive."


"'s good to see. You're more sure of yourself."

“People aren’t keen if the person in charge is anything else. Fortunately it’s temporary and our new CO will arrive soon.”

Haru studied her. "I'm not the enemy Alex."

“No, that’s just Soral, right?” she sighed.

He sighed, "I don't know. I have no idea what the truth is but Hamura seems to think that he's off, they being so linked I have no choice but to believe it. I'm trying to get to the truth."

“Something off doesn’t deserve this and you know it,” Alex snapped. She stopped, taking a deep breath. “I don’t have answers for you.”

Haru gave a nod. "Alright. You know where to reach me if you change your mind."

“Doubtful,” she quipped. “Do you want me to get your chair?”

He debated for a moment but he was exhausted. "That would be great, thanks."

With a nod she was out of her chair and rounding the desk. “I know you dislike it but pushing too hard will not help your recovery,” she told him as she brought the chair back in and positioned it at his side.

Haru transitioned smoothly, the transition taking the last of his strength. "Alex..."

"Hmm?" Her answer made it obvious she had retreated into her own thoughts as she moved to sit back down.

"I'll do my best for Soral, you know that. He means the world to both me and Mac. You mean the world to us."

“Thank you. He means more to me than anyone will ever know,” she said wistfully.

Haru gave a nod and then was off. He had others to talk to, namely Hamura.



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