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A Brief Look Around

Posted on Mon Aug 10th, 2020 @ 7:14pm by Lieutenant Commander Archibald (Archie) Gates & Lieutenant JG Cara Ross
Edited on on Mon Aug 17th, 2020 @ 4:55am

Mission: Mission 8 - A Blast from the Past
Location: Science Lab
Timeline: 2296/03/02 1015 Hours

After Engineering, Archie decided to head to the science labs and introduce himself to the assistant chief science officer. It struck him that America seemed to have plenty of assistant chiefs but not enough chiefs. This is something he pondered until he reached the main science lab.

“Lieutenant Ross?” He asked the first person he saw.

There were a few crew members gathered in the main lab, even given that the ship had returned to base. Many were taking the opportunity to sync up with the starbase's computers to run more complex modeling or update databases with the latest and greatest from the Federation. Thus a few heads turned upon the Lt. Cmdr's arrival, and one Andorian shen pointed Gates in the direction of a redheaded officer in the back of the lab who was bent over a viewing scope with a set of headphones over her ears. Like as not, she'd not heard a thing.

Archie gave the Andorian an appreciative nod before heading towards the officer that was pointed out. “Lieutenant Ross?” He said tapping red headed officer on the shoulder.

Ross, whom had been reviewing audio/visual files from their last mission and brushing her up her final report, nearly jumped out of her skin when the man tapped her on the shoulder, letting out a startled, "Sìol naomh!". She could be very focused, to the extent that she tuned out everything around her, and it had just bit her in her pert rump that time. Cara spun around fast, hand on her chest, looking up at the man as her cheeks flushed as she removed the headset.

Her eyes flicked to the mans rank bar, and the white of his collar and cocked an eyebrow up. "And how may I help ye. Lt. Commander?" Did some bloke from the starbase get lost. Again?

“My apologies, Lieutenant, I just wanted to come and introduce myself. I know there isn’t a chief of the science department yet but as your assistant chief I thought I’d come have a look at your fine department.” Gates said with a warm smile.

Cara worked her jaw from one side to the other, cocked and eyebrow up on her forehead and tilted her head ever so slightly to one side. She hadn't realized that she'd crossed her arms under her bust in the process, a slightly defensive position. "Aye. Well, ye might want to introduce yourself then. We're gettin' a lot o'new crew from what I've been told. Here, I'll go first." She thrust a hand out. "Cara Ross. Chief Science Officer of the USS America."

There was no missing the accent on the word 'Chief.'

“C-Chief Science Officer?” Archie asked. He was sure that the information packet he received about the crew said she was the assistant chief. Obviously this hand changed since the packet had been sent.

"Aye," she noted, with a pregnant pause, before adding, "Sir." He did out rank her, regardless of her position on the ship, and the color of his collar meant he wasn't going to be in her department, so there was only so much bossing and insubordination she could get away with. "Captain offered me the job the moment we got back to base and she ushered the previous officer off the ship." She was still a little confused as to the specifics of why the former Science officer had been shown the door, though she was far from the only officer to depart when they'd made it to their assigned docking berth.

“Ah, my apologies. I was obviously given wrong information and for that I’m sorry.” Archie said lowing his head for forgiven. “Congratulations on the promotion to Chief. Do you have any plans for your new department?”

He still had not actually finished introducing himself, earning another eyebrow arched up, like one of her colleagues. "Apology accepted. For the moment, I'd like to keep the lights on and have them finish up their reporters from Aenerth. Then I'll worry about what t'do with them."

“Sounds like good steps to take.” Gates replied with a smile. “Are you looking forward to having some down time before we’re assigned a new mission?”

And wasn't that an odd question, or so the colonist thought as she pursed her lips (again) and contemplated the Lt. Cmdr. "If we get it aye. I do happen to be stepping up in duties and the like, and its a wee bit of a bag to adjust to. Never enough time, as I'm learning."

“If? You’re at a Starbase, Captain O’Connor is going to give you a chance to recharge your batteries before our next assignment. You need help, I’ll be happy to assist you in getting your department up and running.” Archie asked.

The snort that followed wasn't terribly lady like, and it was arguably acceptable behavior for an officer. "Aye, ah like Cap'n O'Connor, I really do. But she expects ye to do yer job. And if my tour here so far has taught me anything, it's to expect this ship to get shipped out with way less down time than we need." Her accent was coming on a little stronger now. "And while I'm sure we'd love yer help, ye haven't exactly mentioned who ye actually are, or what yer job aboard is, sir."

“Oh god! I’m so sorry! Getting your position wrong put me off my stroke.” Gates said feeling his face start to turn red. “I’m Lieutenant Commander Archie Gates, I’m America’s new First Officer.”

Cara did a slow blinking double take, and then shook her head. "Aye well, sorry fer the lip. Sir. Welcome aboard. Yer in the same boat as me, replacing someone that got th'boot. Tho ah have the benefit of having already been aboard I spouse."

“Indeed, you know the ship and crew better than me so that’s a good start! Well, the offer still stands if you need a hand with anything let me know. It can be daunting for some taking the step up to department Chief, a lot more paperwork too.” Archie said with a smile.

"That's fer damn sure, sir,"she noted with wry amusement. "I'll admit I dinnae plan on having to oversee personnel transfers so soon out of the Academy, but I'm not going to durn down a promotion either."

“Turning down promotions does nothing for your career prospects. Before you know it, you’re calling someone younger than you ‘sir’.” Replied with the first officer. “Or being cocky.” He added remembering his own start to his Starfleet career.

Cara opened her mouth to say something, then looked around the room and blushed slightly. The fact of the matter was, a lot of the officers in the room were older than her, and many of them were now calling her sir, so to speak. "You may have a point there."

“The Captain have you the job for a reason, so it’s time to make this department your own.” Archie replied offering a friendly smile.

There was more than a little suspicion in Cara's mind that part of the reason O'Conner had given her the top spot in the department was so that she wouldn't have to break in a new officer. And the rest of it had been the color of Cara's hair (as red as the captains), like as not. She didn't think that was appropriate to tell the new XO however, and instead gave him a small nod.

"Which is something of what I was doing here. Though I'll admit part of it was following up on some of my predecessors projects. She'd laid out quite a few prospects I'd like to see completed, if I can manage." Whatever personal failings the previous chief had posessed that caused the Captain to give her the boot, the woman had known her stuff well enough, and Cara inteded to profit from the work already in progress.

“If you need any help, please do let me know. I can always contact the stations science department and see if they can spare a few people, even if it’s just temporary while your finish your work.” The First Officer offered, he personally could be much use to the hands on side of science experiments. He could help organise and run the department but that is were his talents finished.

The diminutive redhead gave the new XO an appraising look for a moment and then nodded, still well aware that there were eyes on them, even as the others in the lab tried to pretend otherwise. She made a mental note to go hide in one of the more remote labs for the rest of her shift, and then to the XO said, "That would go a long way to getting some of these projects sorted faster, aye. I'd appreciate it, sir."

“Alright, I’ll make the call.” Archie grinned. “Anything else I can help you with? Dinner later perhaps?”

The young lieutenant blinked her eyes in surprise as the offer, and tilted her head a bit to one side. She let her eyes dart up and down over the older officer, then shrugged. "Assumin' I haven't been buried by new personnel arriving, aye, I could use a good bite later. My plans had entailed hiding in my quarters and tryin' to sleep but that seems a wee bit anticlimactic, what with a whole starbase out there," she made a vague gesture toward the door, and the implied base beyond.

"That's a yes, by the way."

Archie smiled, “Shall I pick you up from your quarters around 1900? Then head over to the station to see what they have?”

Green eyes darted over to a display on the wall that showed the ships time, and she did a little math. "Aye sir, that'll work nicely. This an official kind of thing of are we t'consider ourselves off duty for it?" She asked, curiosity and a bit of amusement on her face. There was no wrong answer, of course, the Science officer just wondered if she'd be attending the meal in uniform, or something more comfortable. Jeans like as not. Maybe one of those Andorian shawls she'd picked up a year back.

“Strictly off duty.” Archie said with a smile. He was drawn in by Cara’s thick accent and brilliant red hair. “Rank will be left in our quarters for the evening.”

She considered that for a moment, all the possible implications, and the fact that her predecessor and Mr. Gates predecessor had been booted off the ship for some hush hush discreet reason, and decided that friendly dinner wouldn't get her in that kind of trouble. "Aye aye, sir. Rank left at the door."

“Alright, I’ll see you later then.” Gates said with a smile before leaving the Lieutenant to her work.

"Roger that. 1900hrs," she noted, watching him leave. She cocked an eyebrow up on her forehead then let out a slow breath. It was going to be an interesting evening...If she got her work done. Turning back to her console, she called up the usage logs for some of the smaller labs on the ship and made picked one to go hole up in so she could actually be able to take the time off later that night.


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