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Prerogative & Progression

Posted on Wednesday, 15 December 2021 - 2:24pm by Captain Pippa Whitley & Lieutenant Alex Kingsley & Lieutenant JG Adrianna Eberhardt & Ensign Oriana Skye Sety

Mission: Operation: Mirror of Madness
Location: Captain's Ready Room


Captain Pippa Whitley rummaged through their desk as the two women arrived at her door. She was quick to respond to the proximity detector, alertingPippa hat Alex Kimgsley and Adrianna Eberhardt had arrived as requested. The Captain stood from their seat, gave her uniform a quick tug to smooth out any wrinkling and waited, hands clasped behind their back.

Pippa ad granted entry with her authorization, the doorway parting, and two women outside were stabding there at the threshold. "Please, enter, the both of you. Help yourself to the replicator, ladies."

Adrianna smiled and headed to the replicator to grab some water. Yes, she was seemingly peeing every two minutes from her unborn child on her bladder, but the woman was thirsty, "thank you."

The Captain nodded "Oh of course," Pippa replied. "My replicator is your replicator. My door may not literally always be open, but if either of you should need anything...anything at all, do not hesitate. Think nothing of it."

Entering behind Adrianna, Alex made no move to the replicator but instead watched the exchange between the two women. She doubted the Captain summoned them for no reason. “We will keep that in mind, thank you,” the science officer replied.

"Well then," Pippa replied as they made their own way to the replicator. "Whitley milk tea one, hot" The Captain said. Soon, there upon the illuminated pad was the materialized mug of tea still steaming. The floral and citrus aroma perfuming the small Ready Room. Pippa clasped the handle of the mug and brought the warming beverage back to the desk where the Captain retook the seat.

"To the point we go then," added Pippa. "Hamura," the Captain said dropping the name like an anvil on glass, shattering the silence. "Thoughts? Opinions? Concerns?"

This was… unexpected. Alex arched an eyebrow in surprise, glancing at Adrianna. “I have many, few of them repeatable in polite conversation,” she confided. “I do not doubt Hamura is a skilled engineer, they would not be here if not. However, I have personally found her to be rude, arrogant with no respect for boundaries or others. My husband has always been more tolerant of her than me.”

In either universe, she thought to herself.

Adrianna nodded in agreement subtly, "I agree and have already voiced my concerns. They often overstep. A prime example was trying to bench me during an away mission when if anything I was the most qualified as I'd been on a ship like it in the past. They believe they can do it all, but do not respect the ideologies of specialisms and their departments."

"A ticking time bomb amid the apocalypse," Pippa replies. "Hamura struts around with an mountainous ego, and fortified walls erected to protect them from the rest of us," the Captain added. "From my perspective at least. I know that you both have your problems with them. Adrianna, you've been very forthcoming with those."

Pippa took a sip of tea and sighed. "This starship needs a Chief Engineer. Giving them a promotion to Lieutenant junior grade was not meant to elevate them up to a podium of superiority, we need a team player, not a tyrant."

Yes, Adrianna had fantasised about an accident of convenience at times, but she wasn't about to suggest that course of action to a captain she didn't know the humour of yet. Instead, Adrianna cautiously asked, "what is it that you suggest?"

“Given we are a small crew, we need to find a way of working together,” Alex pointed out, “and utilise the skills and experience we have on board. As had already been said, it seems the working with others part that needs… work. I’ll admit, I am not the most patient or forgiving when Hamura goes in that kind of attitude. I’ll work on that.”

"I don't think that it is a matter or patience," Adrianna commented, "Hamura likes to push buttons. They like to make themselves out to being a victim by accusing us of hating them, which is far from the case. Hate and dislike are two completely different things. One you'd kill for, the other you would only offer an eye roll for."

"Hamura does like to push buttons. I have spoken with them privately about certain behavioral concerns, and they did admit to intentionally pushing. Though I do not wish to discuss the why, I will say that they need to reign it in" noted Pippa.

The Captain looked at Adrianna. "I do not want them pushing you around in particular, and as a follow up to our previous discussion about your career, I have received clarification on my options. I'm ready to proceed with it."

Adrianna nodded, "I appreciate it, on both counts, ma'am."

"Glad to hear that, and I prefer Sir, but I'll answer to ma'am" Pippa replied with a small smile. "Now then, let's get to that then. Lieutenant Kingsley, as Acting First Officer, I felt it was apropos that you be aware of personnel decisions that I have gone ahead in made" explained the Captain as she fumbled around in her desk for a moment and retrieved what she had been searching for.

“Yes Sir,” Kingsley replied, curious to know what their new CO had in mind.

"Petty Officer Adrianna Eberhardt, if you'll please approach," Pippa ordered, standing from their seat. "It has been determined that due to your years of experience, your time served aboard this starship, and excellent evaluations conducted by Lieutenant Vali and Commander Soral, matched with praise from Commander Victrix and Captain Stillwater, that I take immediate action" added Pippa Whitley.

Captain Whitley reached forward to the woman's uniform and tore off the small rank patch that denoted the woman's rank as a Petty Officer. "Effective immediately, you will carry the rank and responsibilities with Lieutenant Junior Grade aboard the USS Standing Bear, maintaining your position as head of the Intelligence Department with change of Chief of Intelligence to Chief Intelligence Officer as suited with your new rank, lieutenant. Congratulations" Pippa explained as the Captain opened a small box and placed two rank pips on the intelligence officer's uniform.

Adrianna smiled, feeling pride in that her achievements so far had led her to finally being an officer. The woman had given up that idea long ago, resigning to enlistment. "Thank you, captain," she finally replied to the action, allowing the manhandling of her uniform with little more than a few flinched of learnt behaviour.

Once Pippa had finished pinning on the two pips, one solid and the other hollow, the Captain stood and examine their work. "Straighter than Captain Kirk on a planet of women," Pippa said with a small chuckle. Pippa took their hand and brushed off Adrianna's shoulder "Out with the old and in with the new, Lieutenant."

Adrianna snorted a little at the reference to the history books.

Captain Pippa Whitley nodded. "This was a necessary change and one that you have more than earned, concur number one?" Pippa inquired, looking over to Kingsley.

“Absolutely,” Alex nodded.

"If we are in agreement on this promotion, then I shall have it noted that I am placing you, Lieutenant Eberhardt, above Lieutenant Hamura in the ship's official chain-of-command structure albeit I have no plans on several of the crew, myself included being unable to execute our duties; however, next to worse case scenario, you'll assume command."

"Hopefully, we never have to see what I'd be like as cap-ee-tan," Adrianna chuckled softly.

"Back on track," said Pippa taking their seat once more. "I appreciate having the both of you aboard while we proceed to Vulcan. We do need to be prepared for the Vulcan response once we arrive. They will unquestionably be displeased with our presence."

“Displeased yes, but given we have Vulcans aboard, I don’t believe they would be openly hostile. It is their home, and technically mine. It is more likely to need diplomacy.”

"I couldn't agree with you more," Pippa replied. "Diplomacy is key, and your chose of words may be exactly our greatest asset here. Home."

“Captain?” Alex queried, curious to know what the woman had in mind.

Pippa nodded. "I am thinking that Commander Soral is not the only one that could give an impassioned speech to Vulcans," the Captain said firmly. "I am feeling in the mood to remind the Vulcans that their planets are not just home for Vulcans or Vulcanoids, and that being part of the Federation has brought them closer to Surak's vision, that leaving the Federation would send them back significantly."

“That would be quite the speech to here,” Kingsley decided with a rueful smile. “For now I think you will still have a majority willing to listen.”

"For now being the key words, Number One. If I have learned anything in dealing with politically tense situations, it is that majorities change and public opinion holds together with the utmost fragility. There may be be a sense in urgency in delivering the right message at the right time, the Kairos of the matter."

“I’m confident we leave diplomacy in your hands, it isn’t my strength. Some say it’s the hair…” Alex shrugged.

Pippa stifled a giggle. "I don't know about that, Lieutenant. I can do the heavy lifting of public speaking, I will need you at my side to make it effective."

“Aye Captain,” Alex nodded.

The Captain looked at Adrianna. "With Lieutenant Vali gone, I'll need your assistance as well. Put together a crash course on Vulcan history for me, would you please?"

"I'll have it ready as soon as possible for you," Adrianna replied making a mental to do list.

The Captain leaned in and made a quick call on the comm system. "Ensign Sety please report to the Ready Room."

"On may way Captain," came a hurried response. Oriana had been having a rough day so when the call came in she almost groaned. She hurried away from the report she was doing and thanked her lucky stars that she was using a terminal just off the bridge. She arrived swiftly and chimed the door.

Pippa triggered the doorway to part and looked at Ori. "Ensign, please inform Vulcan...whoever is willing to actually answer us, someone of some authority. Inform them that I am speaking on Vulcan. I want to address the people, and it is not a request."

She raised an eyebrow. "Oki doki…." She sighed. "Lieutenant Hernandez may be of help ...he has contacts."

"Make it so," Pippa said firmly. She looked at Kingsley and Eberhardt. "That will be all."

Oriana was the first to leave. She at least had something to do not that would keep her mind off of the fact that Hamura was out there somewhere in pain.

As the others vacated the Ready Room, Pippa began to realize what they had gotten themselves into.



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