Posted on Wednesday, 2 February 2022 - 9:43pm by Lieutenant Ryan Rose MD & Captain Pippa Whitley
Mission: Operation: Crimson Kaleidoscope
Ryan stood at the Captain's Ready Room door. A mix of emotions swirling through his mind. He held a pot of real coffee, knowing it would do little to ease the news, but it was the only gesture he had the power to offer. He took a breath and sounded the chime.
Captain Whitley was nursing a mug of Lady Grey milk tea latte as they mulled over the information on a PaDD. Where did you go you green blooded bastard the Captain thought as they studied star charts, desperately seeking clues, any indication where the Standing Bear's stolen shuttle could be. Lieutenant Kingsley was taken, abducted perhaps, but there was still uncertainty as if that were accurate.
The chime to the Ready Room had caught the Captain mid-sip. Clearing their throat after swallowing, Pippa called out. "Come," and reached across their desk to grant access to the man standing on the other side of the doorway. When the doors parted ways, Pippa's visitor crossed the threshold, the Captain could see it was their Chief Medical Officer. "Doctor Rose, please," Pippa said gesturing to a seat across from the desk. "Something to report?"
Ryan could clearly see the CO already had tea, so he made a detour for the small coffee table and placed the pot and extra mug down, but kept his own. "Yes ma'am. Though of a more personal nature."
"Did you bring that for me?" Pippa inquired noticing the teapot and mugs. The Captain finished off what they had been drinking, and letting some things slip by. "I do not pass up tea. However, it does alert me a bit and arouse some suspicion. Personal in nature?"
"It's coffee." Ryan admitted. He'd fallen into the coffee habit with Stillwater, and hadn't thought to ask if Whitley was a tea or coffee drinker. He did place the mug he'd brought for her on her desk anyway though, just in case. Then he took a seat. "Yes ma'am. I'm not quite sure where to start." He admitted.
Pippa smirked as she took a hold of the mug and brought it to their nose and took in the aroma. "I partake in coffee every so often. I suspect I could use some with everything that is going on" explained Pippa. "Not sure where to start, Doctor? Well, I believe in the words of Julie Andrews 'Lets start at the very beginning...A very good place to start."
Ryan actually grinned in amusement. "Well I don't think we need to go back to the big bang. I guess the short version is I'm getting married, and taking a sabbatical."
"First and foremost, Doctor, congratulations on getting married. Whoever they are, I congratulate the both of you on this journey of matrimony. Though your choice of word is leaving more questions than answers. A simple request for leave to be wedded and enjoy a honeymoon usually allows ample time. Sabbatical, however, are not generally used interchangeably with the normal leave requests."
Pippa studied the man's body language. "They tend to be undetermined, no set period of absence nor return. I presume we are talking more than a month or two? More than a year? How long are you looking to be away on this....sabbatical, Doctor?"
"To be honest, I'm not sure." Ryan ran a hand through his hair. "6 months at least, after that, well it's very much going to depend on where Rogers ends up. I do have a recommendation for my replacement though." He offered up.
"Replacement," Pippa replied with some gravity in their tone. "Temporary or permanent...that's what we seem to be looking at. It sounds as though it is completely up in the air at this point if you will be returning. I must say given the few years you've put into this starship, I was not expecting on having to look at replacing you. The crew appear fond of you, the emergency medical hologram....from what was noted by the previous Commanding Officers, appears to be infatuated with you."
Ryan actually blushed. "Umm, well I'm very fond of Emerick as well. He's been a good friend. But, permanent I'm afraid. I don't think I'll be back on a ship anytime soon." He told her honestly. It felt like a weight lifting, to actually say it out loud.
"That is what I needed to hear," Pippa replied. "I need to know that you aren't looking at a return, because once I grant this sabbatical, and it comes to an end, I cannot promise the ability to return. Starfleet Command and Starfleet Medical will have more say in that than I would, and your replacement may be well rooted aboard by that point. However, I must say, Doctor, that you are going to be missed by this crew. I may not have known you long, but all reports and everything that I have heard and seen lean in the direction favorable of your place here aboard the Standing Bear."
"I'm going to miss the crew, but you'll be far better served with a doctor who's not burnt out and is a surgeon at heart. I wouldn't presume to make the choice. But Doctor Selin is already familiar with Commander Soral, and she has CMO experience. I think it would be a good fit."
Pippa nodded "If you are burnt out, then I encourage the sabbatical. I cannot say that I know of Doctor Selin. Is she Vulcan?" inquired Pippa. They already had a whole Vulcan situation at hand.
"Yes, she's Vulcan, she assisted several months ago when Soral first started to show symptoms, but we didn't know what was going on."
"And is Doctor Selin currently awaiting reassignment or are they presented assigned to a posting? Either way, I will need someone to take over for you, and if Selin wants the position, I will be willing to look over her personnel file."
"Yes, she is." Ryan stated simply, not going into Selin returning from her own sabbatical. That was a story for her to tell if she wanted. "I've been in contact with her regarding Soral, but I know she needs to see him in person to be of more help there. I'm sure you can look her up if you'd like to speak with her."
Pippa looked at Ryan "I have a shuttle to track down and pursue, Doctor. That is presently my only lead at figuring out how to help my First Officer who apparently is stubbornly refusing our efforts to help him. I will grant your sabbatical, but I want Doctor Selin aboard before you leave. That will be your last duty to this starship and to me personally. You want her as your replacement, then work on arranging her transportation to come aboard to relieve you of your post."
"I can do that." Ryan quickly agreed. "Thank you."
"Good luck, happy marriage, and stay safe, Doctor."