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Welcome to Reality

Posted on Sat Jul 8th, 2017 @ 8:45pm by Lieutenant Commander Jerryka Shiloh Ph.D & Lieutenant Jun'ko Zane
Edited on on Wed Jul 19th, 2017 @ 7:46pm

Mission: Dramatis Personae
Location: XO's Ready room
Timeline: MD04 1230

Time was short and the situation critical and neither of those where things that made a intelligence or strategic officer very happy. However things where as they where so Juni was going to simply have to deal with it and that meant accepting the facts and bring her new XO up to speed regardless if she trusted her to be capable of handling the information securely, something scientists and teachers where not exactly known for all the time.

With that all in mind she arrived on deck one and made her way to the XO's ready room and right away the first alarms starting to ring in her head as she found an open door. Granted she spotted some of the ops crew working to get the room in shape and designed to the Commander's liking, but still close the damned door was on top of her mind as she simply walked in. "Commander Shiloh?" she asked politely neither her tone or face betraying any of her feelings she had spend to much time learning to hide those.

"It's kind of crukid, isn't it?" Jerryka said as she winced toward the far wall. On the other side of the room, two enlisted crew were adjusting a very large, very colorful painting on the bulkhead while another blonde female Ensign looked on with a focused stare.

"I'm not sure, ma'am." the Ensign said with raised eyebrow. "Maybe we could try to move it a bit to the right.

Jerryka crossed her arms over her chest. Her uniform jacket was on the back of her desk chair and the sleeves of her command turtleneck shirt were rolled up past her elbows. She looked over at the newcomer in the doorway with a serious expression. "Lieutenant Zane, what do you think?"

"Drop the right by 5mm to have it level, about 3cm to the right to have it centered." Juni said, glad to see the commander did at least remember her face and name. That said she hoped the others would soon be done as she wanted to talk about things not meant for their ears.

Jerryka was pleased that she had clearly asked the right person. The Lieutenant had a gift for observation; she would have to remember that. Of course, since she had a eidetic memory, recalling the Lieutenant's characteristics wouldn't be a difficulty.

She looked at the operations crew. "5mm to the right and then give us the room." she said simply. "The Lieutenant and I have an agenda." They quickly did so and then gathered their things to leave. Before they were out the door, Jerryka offered a thank you to them for their help.

The Commander leaned over and pressed a control at her desk that closed the door behind them. Once she and Jun'ko were alone, she offered a broad smile and turned her head femininely. "Nice to meet you." she said politely.

"Once again on short notice." Juni said taking a few more steps inside. "Anyhow I hope you do not mind me dropping in, but you have some catching up to do and I believed it best that we start that as soon as possible."she was not being very polite perhaps, but also not rude, just to the point keeping herself as neutral as she could.

Tell me about it Jerryka thought to herself in response to the Lieutenant's comments about her having catching up to do. "Uhm..don't worry about it at all." she said. "I was just about to have lunch. Can I get you anything?"

"Glad to hear and a sandwich of sort will do thank you." Juni said pulling out a PADD from one of her pockets and entering some commands on it to bring up the relevant information. While doing so she kept half an eye on the commander out of habit and curiosity.

Jerryka nodded and walked over to the replicator. She stood in front of the device for several seconds of thinking and then produced a tray. She picked it up, along with its contents and carefully walked it over to the small conference table she'd had hauled in. She lowered herself into a chair.

"Grilled cheese sandwiches and milk." she said with a smile. "Best lunch ever."

"Would you mind?" Juni asked waving her empty hand at an empty chair.

"Oh, please." Jerryka said, gesturing toward the chair as she picked up a sandwich. She wasn't yet used to officers who waited to be offered a seat by their superior. She would have to remember that next time.

As the woman sat down, Jerryka observed her while taking a bite. She sensed a certain lack of trust between them which, honestly, didn't surprise her. "What do you like to be called?" she asked. "I mean, besides 'Lieutenant' or 'Miss Zane'? Do you have a nickname?"

"Most familiar to me call me Juni, but lieutenant will do just fine." Juni said taking a small bite, she had learned that one grilled cheese sandwich was not like an other, however this one seemed alright. "Commander could you tell me what you already have been briefed on and don't worry I am fully cleared to know anything at your level." Seeing the sandwich was identified she went right to business.

"Classified specs of the Solaria as well as full reports on the senior staff." Jerryka said, sipping from her glass of milk. "I'll get to the rest of the crew over the next few weeks. As for intergovernmental affairs and Starfleet Projects, I haven't been briefed outside of scientific information." She looked at the Lieutenant and wondered why she insisted on formality as a shield between them. "I'm a weapons expert so, aside from special projects, I'm aware of our firepower."

"No mission briefing yet then, bit sloppy of command." Juni said shaking her head. "As for firepower that will not be our main concern right now, unless you plan to blow up a hijacked civilian vessel. A splinter group of Rihansu calling themselves very creatively the Rihansu Resistance has been trying to lay claim to an area of space and open negotiations with the Federation. However before that could get fully underway they instead decided to hijack a freighter and are now threatening to kill it's crew and we have been kindly tasked to head out and negotiate. Normally this is the point where I put all our knowledge as far as you are cleared to on the table to help you out, but we have absolutely nothing. I even have been calling around within my own contacts and it seems this group appeared overnight. Of course that is not the case, but until we know more I would consider them a beta level terrorist threat to the Federation." Juni slid a padd over the table to the commander as they where just to far apart to hand it over, "What we have is on there and I am sure the captain will be talking with you in debt on the situation. I will however warn you that we have to walk a careful line here this is the first incident with this group and if they are what they claim, how we act now is going to set a president for the future."

Jerryka activated the PADD and thumbed through it. "I see." she said simply. "Forgive me, just how much of this is a secret?" she asked, head slightly sideways.

"The senior staff has been briefed on all of this, none it is still considered secret, in fact I am surprised that the FNS hasn't blown this story out of proportion yet." Juni said taking an other bite, after all it would be a waste to let it go cold.

The new XO nodded her understanding, folding one of her legs over the other. "Tell me what we know about the Rihansu Resistance so far." She said. "Is there anything I should know before we arrive at the Tezra?"

Juni let out a sigh, if there was one thing she hated more than anything in the known universe it was knowing nothing and that was exactly what she knew, "Long and short answer, nothing. They came out of nowhere and no one seems to be linked to them or pulling their strings. At least no one we know of which could explain their rash and erratic behavior. However I am of firm believe that there is more going on, but we simply have nothing to go on so I am not even speculating on it."

Jerryka forced back a smirk with little success as she took a bite of a sandwich slice. Starfleet Intelligence acted like they knew everyone's secrets. It was a bit satisfying for her, strangely enough, when they had no more idea what was going on than she did. Of course, she supposed that being on a ship like the Solaria was being at the cutting edge of clandestine work. She resented that a bit, much preferring to be at the cutting edge of scientific work. "I'm sure we'll fill the information gap soon enough." she said simply, still forcing back the smile.

"Not soon enough for it to matter for what we are about to face and that is the issue. We are going in blind not because we want to go in, but because we have to. Our hand is forced and a forced hand is never a good one to play. This is not a science experiment, beside a few lives we are talking about the stability of this sector and perhaps the quadrants. Things are uneasy on many sides and the last thing we need is for a spark to fly free and ignite it all." Juni said her tone serious as her eyes rested on the commander her attempts to hide her feelings not succeeding versus her own trained eyes and years of experience.

"Uncertainly is a reality that I'm accustomed to." Jerryka said, noting the woman's distaste for her statements. The woman was trying to take her to school and, while she understood she had alot to learn, she hardly believed a junior officer who didn't respect her was the one to do it. She pursed her lips slightly before sipping the milk in front of her. "In uncertain times, we must be careful or our desire for discovery can get us killed." Jerryka fought back her anxiety and took a deep breath. "I'm the quickest study you've ever met, Lieutenant; I'm willing to bet you that. I don't intend to spark anything."

"Never meant to say you are, but I am saying that the slightest mistake could send the spark free. As for uncertainty well we both have past and presents where we are supposed to shed some light on uncertainty to make this certain. Just realize that studying and practical experience are two rather different things, I don't doubt your intelligence, but I do doubt your lack of experience." Juni spoke frankly, no matter her thoughts it would be best for the commander to fully realize how Juni considered her. "Take that as you wish commander and understand I do not mean you ill and I will do the best to help you succeed, but some one in my position will naturally be doubtful of an uncertain factor like yourself. We don't like uncertainty in any form and I am uncertain about you."

Jerryka cleared her throat and seemed to emotionally check out from the situation for a few seconds, looking aimlessly past Juni and at the half-decorated bulkhead behind her. Her eyes then drifted out of the window at the stars streaming by. Her mind danced over the body of knowledge she'd accumulated over the years. Her years at the Vulcan Science Academy did alot for her sense of emotional control. She observed the Lieutenant's words logically and then she nodded, turning back to her. "I understand what you're saying and your respect is important to me. I would like to depend on you and also give you some certainty about my abilities. For that to work, I must remind you that I'm the XO aboard this ship and your superior officer. Don't question me in public; follow my orders. I'm going to be dealing with enough as it is." Jerryka wiped her hands on the napkin in front of her and put it down on the empty plate. "If you do this, I promise to listen to your counsel and your expertise. If not, I'll have to manage without it."

"I am not one to undermine your authority commander, I know the importance of that all too well. I climbed to where I am from the enlisted ranks so do not worry. In public I am who I need to be, the spook who has hopefully all the answers." Juni said and a small smile cracked on her lips. "Beside a lesser officer would have had a different reaction to my words. I pushed the buttons I needed to press, I believe you will make a fine officer, all you will need simply is experience. In that particular area I think I have you beat fair and square commander and sadly biology of our species being what it is you will never catch me up on that one." she then spoke and took her own final bites, she had been harsh, dangerously so she knew, but she would rather get kicked off the ship than have no faith in her XO. At least now she had some faith that things would turn out well.

"Glad to hear it." Jerryka said, returning the smile, yet not nearly as widely as she wanted to. She display a more professional joy. Being a command officer was going to offer her a million challenges she'd never wanted and she was glad to have worked out such an arrangement. "I think we've reached an understanding." she said, knowing a more experienced officer likely would have reported the woman for her candor. Experience often brought a certain kind of expectation and arrogance with it; Jerryka was blessed with the wisdom to know that she didn't know better than everyone else. Perhaps that alone would serve her here. "Do you have anything else to brief me on?"

"Nothing else at the moment, if I learn any new information I will inform the required personnel. Also my apologies for putting on the pressure, It can be tricky not to use interrogation techniques." Juni said wiping her fingers clean, it was only fair and while she doubt she would have made a friend, that really was not important to her, what mattered is that she could put some of her trust into the XO.

"That's your job, I get it." Jerryka responded. "Thank you for lunch, Lieutenant. Send any other documents you need to my yeoman." she said with a smile as she stood up from the table which sat by the window and walked behind her desk. "You're dismissed."

"Understood, Commander." Juni said standing up from her seat. Once standing she briefly stood at attention before walking out of the room back to her den to see if any of her contacts had come up with anything at all.


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