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  1. Welcome to Day Three of the Annual Awards Ceremony 2021! The Staff awards are only for those members who have achieved the rank of Commander or higher. Just like last year, we asked the first officers of the fleet to vote on the nominations for each staff award, providing recommendations to the EC about who should receive each award. We’re so happy to have this valuable feedback and guidance for our staff awards! These awards recognise the hard work of our community members who go above and beyond to ensure that everyone has a glorious experience here. There's so much behind-the-scenes work required to keep the engine of our community running, and these folks are a central part of that. Elinor of Kanist Order of Excellence Named for one of UFOP: StarBase 118's most significant founding members. This award recognises those who have served the fleet as a staff member for at least 5 years, attained the rank of Rear Admiral or higher, previously been awarded the Picard Award and Staff Member of the Year Award, and continue to serve the fleet to the betterment of all members. This is the highest staff honour, celebrating longevity, dedication to the fleet, and the perseverance for wearing the Admiral's belt. Tristan Wolf, USS Administration Presented by Roshanara Rahman: My first direct interaction with Jordan aka Fleet Admiral Wolf was ten years ago when he left a message on my wiki talk page after I made a bold edit to the Starfleet Marines rank overview page, redirecting it to an existing comparison chart of Starfleet to Marine ranks. Jordan reverted my edit, explaining that the page was part of a larger series of pages for the Academy Library, but he encouraged me to add the table to the original page if I thought it made the information more easily digestible. In many ways, this first interaction is a perfect example of how our collaborative process in the decade since has developed. Like many members of StarBase 118, I was at first intimidated by engaging directly with “The Fleet Admiral” and the founder of our group. But I quickly saw firsthand that while Jordan may have been (rightfully) cautious at times of making hasty changes and decisions without considering the long-lasting effects, he was always open to hearing my ideas and those of other members, from veteran admirals to the newest ensigns. The Federation News Service, the Veterans Affairs team, and many other initiatives came to fruition because Jordan was not just open to new ideas and ways of doing things but enthusiastically so, and his support helped see those ideas followed through. It is this tireless and continual drive of his for innovation that I believe has truly set StarBase 118 apart from other simming/roleplaying groups. Jordan has built a culture from the top of our organisation in which we are open to change and regular self-reflection. As the landscape of Star Trek simming and online roleplaying games has changed over the past 27 years, Jordan has ensured that our fleet evolves with it. In addition to his own ideas and proposals (such as the simplification of our simming formatting and a fresh approach to the recruitment team), Jordan continues the often taken-for-granted role of maintaining our fleet’s “infrastructure.” The website, the forums, the wiki, and more all require never-ending care and attention as web development tools constantly update and change, causing new incompatibilities and technical challenges. Jordan has joked about being the fleet custodian because of this work, but perhaps to make a Star Trek comparison, his closest analogue is Boothby, the legendary groundskeeper at Starfleet Academy who served as a mentor to future renowned captains such as Picard and Janeway. Jordan similarly has supported many other venerated captains in our own fleet at various stages of their development as players and gone on to work with them closely as fellow 118 staff members in our shared goal of maintaining and growing our beloved fleet. Congratulations, Fleet Admiral Wolf! Your modesty in all you do is heartwarming, but know that all of us agree that the work you do has earned you well-deserved recognition with the Elinor of Kanist Order of Excellence. Honor of the Admiralty The highest award that can be conferred upon a UFOP: Starbase 118 staff member under the rank of Rear Admiral. This award recognises those who have served as staff members for a minimum of five years in a multitude of disciplines. From facilitating our task forces, engaging with the Captain's Council, and leading with the utmost dedication, these writers volunteer their time, effort, and skill to building our game and community and have comprehensively earned the respect and loyalty of members. Aron Kells, USS Thor Presented by Sal Taybrim: Funny enough, last year’s presentation for this award started with a quote that said, "He is quite literally the reason that I am still a member of this community." And again, this year, nothing could be more true of Tony, aka Commodore Aron Kells. Truly, he is the reason that I am still playing this game. When I was a junior player, then Fleet Captain Kells was Cadet Steward, the point of communication for new and incoming players in the fleet. He was supportive of new players and junior officers in a positive way I had never seen before. When I reached out to him to moderate a situation on a ship he had never been on — and I was a player he had never met before — his response was timely, fair and supportive. His communication turned an unpleasant situation into one where trust was built across ships and carried on over years, and later he was my command mentor as an up and coming orphaned captain. Year after year he has proven himself a supportive friend and mentor to so many members of the StarBase 118 fleet of every rank. Tony is a longtime steady member of the Executive Council, and in his illustrious career, he has served as Captain’s Council magistrate, facilitator of the writing challenges, promotions coordinator and was the driving force behind the Federation News Service’s Presidential Election campaign in 2392. Commodore Kells also directly fostered and promoted some of the greatest commanding officers in the StarBase 118 fleet and has served his crews tirelessly as a determined, brilliant commanding officer himself. His current crew echoes these sentiments, recognising him as humble, affable and engaging. He is incredibly supportive of new members, gentle but firm in matters of discipline and unbelievably patient. He has the remarkable ability to admit when he is wrong and see the point of view of other people - rare jewels in this world - and he cultivates some of the best writers in the fleet on every ship he commands. They also might have said something about dragging him to Risa, we’ll just say that’s off the record and I’ll send you his Horga'hn in the mail. And let’s talk about those ships he commands for a moment! Tony is renowned for bringing creative, unique and decidedly weird-looking ships into the StarBase 118 Fleet. From the Chariot class deep space explorer the USS Za to the Cardiff class diplomatic courier the USS Invicta, Tony’s legacy isn’t just with ships that look weird, but evocative ships with a specific story goal that helps the Star Trek world come alive. His vivid storytelling ability and steadfast crew support bring everyone from the newest players to the longest veteran along for an incredible ride. There is no one more patient, enduring or devoted and I am so happy to present this award to Commodore Kells! Staff Member of the Year Award For staff members who have contributed tirelessly to the organisation through many OOC channels, while maintaining excellence in simming on their vessel. Jo Marshall, USS Gorkon Presented by Tristan Wolf: Okay, wow, I'm about to blow your mind: We have given this award every year for 10 years and Marshall (Em) is the 11th recipient, but the FIRST COMMANDER ON RECORD. Everyone before her was of captain rank or higher (some admirals!), so she's in experienced company and is clearly setting a new bar (lower? higher? Hard to tell with this metaphor). I had the pleasure of presenting another award to Em last year, as well: Quark's Bar, where I praised her efforts to make the Discord server feel like home for our members who frequent it daily. But that was all practice compared to this year. As one nominator asked, "FNS, POTW, Image Collective, the Academy, First Officer of the Gorkon, images for the Gorkon's Quote of the Month, a heavy presence on Discord and the forums, what DOESN'T Em do?" Another said, "Even if you’ve never spoken to Em, you’d know her presence. She has a hand in virtually every part of this fleet." Indeed. Every time I work with Em it's a pleasure. Like last year's award ceremony, which she also facilitated, where I proposed we formalise the tasks required to conduct this ceremony and she took up the charge without a second thought. And that's really the way she is: Game for anything, good-natured about everything. A razor wit coupled with easy charm just makes it fun to work with her, even as it seems like she's accomplishing impossible tasks on a daily basis. Oh, and since she can only win this award once, I just want to thank her in advance for the huge project she's been working on for months, which will be unveiled in the coming weeks. I think everyone will be amazed by it, and she definitely deserves this award on the basis of all that work alone, even if we won't pull back the cover on it until after the ceremony. So you can read the award description above, and it's easy to see how Em fits perfectly into this. Which is probably why she received so many nominations. "Contributes tirelessly ... while maintaining excellence in simming" defines Em. Congratulations to her for earning this award. It's the absolute least we, as a community, can do to show our gratitude for everything that Em has contributed. The James T. Kirk Cross Given to new a Commanding Officer who shows outstanding potential in command. Randal Shayne, USS Arrow Presented by Quinn Reynolds: It's been a real privilege to watch Randal Shayne develop as a commanding officer over the past year; from his tentative first steps as a commander to the more self-assured captain he is today. Becoming a CO can be a humbling experience, struck with just how much there is still to learn and how many skills there are to develop, and it's a challenge he has met with aplomb. He's worked hard to develop himself as a leader, taking feedback and seeking advice on difficult situations, earnest in his desire to do right by his crew and the fleet. And it shows! His crew enthuse about the friendly, creative and collaborative environment he has created aboard the Arrow; listening to their ideas about story and character, ensuring everyone can shine and contribute to their plots. His investments in mentoring, organisation and mission-building have seen his ship go from strength to strength, his crew dedicated and active. Under his guidance, the Arrow has become more than just a place people write; it's a community, warm and welcoming, coming together to create a haven of fun in a trying year. So it's with great delight and much pleasure that I present Captain Randal Shayne with this year's James T. Kirk Cross. Congratulations, and well very done! Chief’s Citation Recognising the essential staff members whose determined work has benefitted the group In Character, and/or Out Of Character, even while their primary service was not as the Commanding Officer of a simming installation. Inspired by the non-commissioned and enlisted personnel who are the backbone of any starship but were rarely recognised in Star Trek lore in favour of the officers. Sky Blake, USS Veritas Presented by Quinn Reynolds: It's a great pleasure to present this award to someone who has been a member of our fleet for many years now and has spent the past twelve months undertaking some of the least glamorous, but most helpful tasks in the fleet. As Captains Council Magistrate, she organises votes and keeps staff discussions on track and points them toward finding a resolution—not always the easiest of tasks! For two years running, she's been the driving force behind the State of the Federation Address, helping our community and staff to reflect on the year and decide how to move forward even better than before. In her role as Wiki Operations Facilitator, she hosts regular "Help Desk" hours and sets challenges for her team to improve the wiki for the benefit of all. She's also been steadfast in her role as Fleet Taskforce Coordinator, coordinating with COs and Taskforce leaders regularly, making sure membership rosters are up-to-date and keeping our taskforce leaders focused on their goals for the year. As a CO, a taskforce leader and a member of the CC, I've deeply appreciated everything she's done and will do, and I'm delighted to be the one who gets to present this award. Commander Sky Blake, thank you for all the time and dedication you've poured into the fleet, and congratulations on being the winner of this year's Chief's Citation! The Sarek Star Given to a commanding officer who shows great diplomatic ability in working with members and staff. Quinn Reynolds, USS Gorkon Presented by Tristan Wolf: Here's some serendipity for you: I presented this award for the first time in 1996 to Elinor of Kanist. And at last year's ceremony, Emma was the inaugural recipient of the Elinor of Kanist Order of Excellence! And now, this year, I get to present Emma with an award she, perplexingly, hasn't received yet. Full circle. The Sarek Star is an award with a broad mission: Recognise the staff members who show great diplomatic ability with others in the community. For those folks beginning their journey here, this might seem like a bit of an odd one. Diplomatic ability? What exactly does that mean, and why do we need it? But for those folks in the staff ranks, the importance of this award is immediately apparent. Running a community that's as structured as ours is an incredible feat. The stakes aren't as high as being a member of the United Nations, but often the intricacy of our work seems the same. With competing priorities, limited resources (particularly time and energy), and incredible goals, finding the way to not only rally but also befriend people is paramount. Without the skill of diplomacy, it's incredibly hard to make this community work. Emma never fails to impress, generally, but as a "diplomat," she's adept. As always, she brings a seemingly unparalleled knowledge of the workings of the fleet to every discussion, often aware of nuanced interchanges between ships and members that help inform and contextualise our decisions. She deftly charges ahead but also concedes when necessary – always without a hint of ego. Whereas I am constantly reminding myself to temper my frustration, she is a steady voice of reason, never "raising her voice," although I'd never blame her if she did! I'd be remiss, though, if I didn't look to the nominations submitted for her, which clearly came from her crew and speak to a different facet of Emma's diplomatic skill that I see less of: leading the Gorkon. The nominations spoke of how much care and effort Emma puts into working with members of her crew, guiding them in each interaction with expertise – providing options on how to proceed and crafting sims that help her crew members navigate complex OOC situations. A key point I deeply identify with is how Emma seems to handle all this with a well of power, seemingly unexhausted or even invigorated by the opportunity to engage with community members. Oh gosh, even without intending to, I almost wrote, "A compassionate Vulcan is impossible to find but in Emma, we have one," without even remembering that the name of this award is the Sarek Star! Yes, of course, Emma embodies Sarek. We are so lucky to have her here, and I'm deeply appreciative of everything she brings to our community. Christopher Pike Pendant Awarded to commanding officers who command their ship with honour and dedication, and help to provide a creative atmosphere that fosters outstanding simming. Mei’konda, USS Chin’toka Presented by Aron Kells: I had the distinct pleasure of first getting to know Aaron, the writer for Mei’konda, back when he returned to the fleet eight years ago, in 2013. I wasn’t able to guide him through promotion to commander and into his captaincy that time around — that honour fell to Rich (Rahman) — but I’m very pleased that I could see Aaron blossom again as CO of the Chin’toka. He inherited the launch of that ship, along with the crew of the Atlantis, under some very unusual circumstances (the sudden retirement of the Atlantis’s CO), and while those circumstances might have produced an impossible situation for another CO, Aaron has thrived as the Chin’toka’s CO. One of his nominators notes that Aaron “did a remarkable job at setting the crew at ease and building a rapport with them that has resulted in the crew being at ease with him,” and through that rapport, he not only won the loyalty of his fellow simmers but established himself as an accomplished CO at the same time. Some words and phrases used to describe Aaron this year in his nominations for the Pike Pendant include “amazing sensitivity,” “grace and style,” and “standout dedication and honour” — high praise indeed! — and that he encourages “creative and insightful sims from his crew” while also “fostering an imaginative campaign scenario.” I’m incredibly proud to see the strength of character and conviction that Aaron brings to his captaincy, and I’m honoured to recognise him this year with the Christopher Pike Pendant. Congratulations, Aaron! Please join us in congratulating these members of the staff!
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  2. Welcome to the last day of the awards ceremony! So far this week we’ve announced the recipients of the Staff, General, Length of Service and Special awards. Today, we present the Duty Post awards. Each award focuses on a different department from the major ones such as medical, operations or engineering to the more unique - like diplomacy, intel or marines. Even civilians are recognised for the valuable contributions those who prefer the path less worn can make to our stories. Each of these awards recognises a player for excellence in simming their duty post. Since we give only one award per duty post each year, we chose only those who sim the duty post in an exemplary fashion to represent. You’ll see from our spread of winners — who range in rank from Ensign to Captain — every player can be nominated for one of these by consistently simming to the best of their ability and striving to improve their craft. The Prantares Award - Medical The Prantares Ribbon is a duty post award and is awarded to those Medical officers who have moved beyond competence to display a genuine gift for the healing arts in space medicine. The officers given this award should display the ability to keep a steady hand in the often hazardous conditions in which they must practice, as well as the willingness to risk their own lives to save the lives of others. Alieth, USS Thor Presented by Aron Kells: This year’s Prantares Ribbon goes to Alieth, written by the talented Andrea, who has served as the Thor’s medical officer and, recently, a chief medical officer since its relaunch in 2020. Andrea’s take on medical simming is some of the best in the fleet, and her nominators describe it with high praise: “In our time writing together, I have come to respect the way Alieth crafts a medical scene - whether treating mass trauma events or consulting for one-on-one evaluations, her attention to detail is impressive.” She mixes real-world medicine and science with what they have shown in Trek canon, and the results are technical without losing her fellow simmers’ interest — detailed and engaging, in all the right ways. As important is Andrea’s attention to detail when it comes to the character she’s writing. Several of her nominators pointed out how Andrea’s crafted Alieth, not into the “perfect” Vulcan physician — with “the potential to be stale, describing nothing but a logical progression,” according to one nomination — but Andrea’s writing is anything but. Alieth’s approach “is a treat which strays from tropes and constantly challenges the scene, improving it in every way,” according to one nominator, while another notes “her unique brand of compassion and humour is especially notable because she threads the needle of playing a Vulcan character while still demonstrating powerful empathy and emotional resonance.” Very impressive indeed! While Alieth is an excellent medical officer on the Thor, she’s likely to be familiar to many in the fleet at large, and not only because of Andrea’s presence on Discord, the forums, and in various teams and taskforces. Andrea has gone out of her way to craft stories that include simmers and characters from around the fleet, and usually, with some key grounding in medical science of the Trek universe — one nominator called special attention to her arc with the character Sern. I’ll leave this citation with a final quote from a nomination that summarizes Alieth especially well: “Her professionalism is marked with a hint of humour (but don’t tell her that, she’ll deny it), her bedside manner is far warmer than one might expect from one of her species, and who can resist being given candy for good behaviour after a doctor’s visit?” Congratulations, Andrea! The Natasha Yar Pin - Security The Natasha Yar Pin is a duty post award and is awarded to those Security officers who have gone above and beyond the call of duty in protecting and preserving the lives of their crewmates, even at risk to their own. Aine Sherlock, USS Resolution Presented by Kalianna Nicholotti: There is a lot that goes into a good security officer. With plenty of on-screen examples, we have a pretty good idea of what it takes to serve in this role on a starship, but it takes a special writer to bring it all together. The recipient of this year’s Natasha Yar Pin, Jared - aka Lieutenant JG Aine Sherlock - does a fantastic job and exemplifies everything we look for. Strong, true, smart, and witty. The character Jared writes jumps off the page and fills the role so well I can't imagine the Resolution without her. Every sim that Jared writes and every contribution to the story that he adds is one that we all look forward to reading. He takes us on a journey through Sherlock that shows us that a good security officer is vulnerable sometimes, and not always one to make the best decisions. But, when it comes to the safety of her crew, there are no chances, no second guesses, and no wondering about where her intentions are. Beyond the character, Jared serves in many other roles as well, including the incredible upkeep of the Resolution’s wiki and in the capacity of making graphics and images. With each thing he adds, he offers something that adds to the depth of our fleet and lends credence to why he is this year’s Natasha Yar pin winner. I look forward to seeing him go far with us in the 118 fleet. Congratulations! The Voyager Medallion - Ops The Voyager Medallion is a duty post award and is awarded to those operations officers who have shown great skill in keeping a starship in working order despite near-impossible circumstances. The officers receiving this award have advanced the field of Operations, making sure duty rosters, provisions, gear, and even recreation time are available... no matter what. Maria Alvarez, USS Arrow Presented by Randal Shayne: Some time ago, I was interviewed about the Ops officer position, and in it, I advised all future Opsians to simply make the role their own. There is so much variety provided that anything less is a waste of material. I have no way of knowing whether Max read it, but it doesn’t change the fact that he writes an Ops officer so impressively that I can’t help but take notes. His brilliant intertwining of character, personality, past experience and current adversity make Maria Alvarez a delight to read and behold. Max knows just how far to push and pull, and he knows how to make a story work not just for his character, but for the entire ship. It is the Ops officer’s job to keep things organised and running smoothly, to keep interconnected facets of a ship and crew working together harmoniously. I’m not sure where we would be without Max, in character or out. Whether he’s writing for his character, working with others on joint stories, or advising and assisting the Arrow staff, Max is an Ops officer through and through, and I say without reservation that he is absolutely deserving of this recognition. Congratulations! The Sisko Tactical Cross - Tactical The Sisko Tactical Cross is a duty post award and is awarded to those tactical officers who have shown cunning and bravery in battle. Master strategists, and experts in targeting and shield power distribution, these officers have done the impossible to save their ship and the lives of its crew. Atan T’Seva, USS Constitution-B Presented by Jalana Rajel: Tactical is one of these posts on a ship that can be a challenge to write for. As ships do not get into battle all the time, or in the Constitution's case ever until recently, it's difficult to bring this department to life. But not so for the Chief Tactical Officer on the Constitution. No matter the kind mission she joined with enthusiasm, creativity and out of the box thinking on how to integrate the Tactical department. Be it putting together escape routes on Xatrac, training of new officers, suggestions for updates of technology to build an earthquake alarm system on Endaasi, or analyse opponents to predict their moves so we did not have to find out a way into battle. During the last Constitution mission, though, when Orion Syndicate Pirates attacked out of nowhere, she finally could put all her tactical knowledge to good use. With her cool head and confidence, she finally had her time to shine and was a big part of why the Constitution only lost a warp nacelle and was not torn apart. It is my pleasure to present the Sisko Tactical Cross to Atan T'Seva. Congratulations! The Phoenix Award - Engineering The Phoenix Award is a duty post award that recognises engineers. Named for the vessel that legendary engineer Zefram Cochrane piloted during his historic first warp flight, this award goes to those Engineering officers who continue this tradition of excellence in engineering. By performing their tasks with enthusiasm, imagination and diligence, by making their equipment perform above and beyond its rated capacities, the officers meriting this award further the mission of their ship by their superior know-how. In short, miracle workers. Wil Ukinix, USS Veritas Presented by Roshanara Rahman: A good engineer is a problem solver. A great chief engineer not only comes up with solutions but leads a team, encouraging and inspiring them to come together as an entire department of problem solvers. Since Wil Ukinix first started simming aboard the USS Veritas, he has shown enthusiasm and knack for tackling whatever is thrown at him in-character and out-of-character. Learning under the guidance of Geoffrey Teller, his department chief at the time, Ukinix was a diligent starship engineer, contributing to various contraptions and imaginative plans-of-action to save the day, ship, and crew. But in this past year when he took on the role of chief engineer, we’ve gotten to see a new side of Ukinix, that of being a leader and mentor to not just his fellow engineers but the larger crew. Within the engineering department, Ukinix writes with two other players, and he often employs departmental briefings and special projects to ensure that everyone is engaged and gets a chance to shine. When his engineering crew came up with ideas to develop animal-like repair drones and other creative engineering tools we hadn’t really seen in Star Trek before, Ukinix worked with both of them on fully fleshing out the idea and how to implement them in our game. Beyond his department, Ukinix has now become one of the ship’s most senior officers, rising to the position of second officer, and he provides a steady hand as part of the command team, perfectly balancing his character’s fun personality and light-heartedness with that of a dedicated Starfleet officer who wants to do the right thing and set a good example for the people under his watch. As he continues to write with StarBase 118 PBEM RPG, I know he will reach any star he sets his aim for, and I am delighted and honoured to see him recognised with this year’s Phoenix Award! The Cochrane Award - Science The Cochrane Award is a duty post award and is awarded to those science officers who have contributed to the advance of science during their Starfleet career, by staying knowledgeable about their field, taking part in the community of science, but most importantly, by placing their knowledge at the service of their ship and its mission. Lazarus Davis, USS Constitution-B Presented by Jalana Rajel: Where do I even start with this one! Science is such a huge part of Star Trek that it can intimidate, not wanting to write the wrong thing and have millions of Scientists scream in pain. But it can be one of the most interesting and exciting posts if you either know what you are talking about or have so much creativity to make up things and mix it with facts so that it sounds real even though it's fiction. One of the people with who I have the joy to write with who can do this to a breathtaking extend is Lazarus Davis. Frequently questions came up on how to solve problems, how to explain a plot twist and the Science never disappointed. Solutions like using a unique gas to our advantage, throw space dust at the enemy - even if the resulting explosion had dire consequences for his psyche, or explain unnaturally strong currents in a nebula with a stellar phenomenon like a starry tempest. At times don't go by plan or the science fails and in those times Josh is not scared to show the ethical dilemmas or struggles that follow as well. During our last mission, he had to face what happens when your science causes fatalities. And seeing that side of Science as well makes a great read! When talking about science with Josh or reading his sims it is easy to feel his enthusiasm for the field and I can't wait to see what else he'll come up with. It's my pleasure to present the Cochrane Award to Lazarus Davis. Congratulations! The Pilot's Sextant - Helm The Pilot's Sextant is a duty post award that recognises helm officers. An award named after an old Earth navigational tool, the Pilot's Sextant is given to those Helm officers who have proven themselves to be the best of the best. From finding a safe route home to flying an emergency atmospheric landing, pilots who have earned the right to this award know the importance of staying focused and puts their ability to make spectacular manoeuvres at the service of their ship and its mission. Cadfael Peters, USS Chin’toka Presented by Mei’konda: A highly experienced member of the fleet who’s played almost every duty post that we offer, Zephyr, the player of Peters, came aboard the Chin’toka as a dedicated helmsman, because we were lucky enough to have an Operations Chief already. Helm can present a challenge for players, because of the occasionally limited nature of the role, but Cadfael Peters has brought life to both his character and to the position of helm by taking the initiative when he can to describe the movements of ships or shuttles through space, particularly during exciting moments like ship to ship battles. He takes every opportunity to describe things visually interestingly that makes it easy for his crewmates to be drawn into the action, and he always gives his fellow players opportunities to add in by communicating directly between the helm and their stations in unique and well thought out ways. The Chin’toka is very lucky to have Zephyr, and I’m thrilled to present him with the Pilot’s Sextant for 2021! The Order of the Valiant Heart - Counselling This award is given to those ship Counselors who show great skill in protecting the mental health of their crewmates, evincing superior ability to care, assist, and comfort those in need. They have gone above and beyond the call of duty in assisting their crewmates with their problems, and in preventing future problems from occurring. R’Ariel, USS Arrow Presented by Randal Shayne: Anyone who’s written for a counsellor is well aware of how uniquely challenging the role is. In character, counsellors have to get incredibly creative with how they engage with missions and carry out their obligations to the best of their ability. That’s extra difficult if there’s not a lot of call for diplomacy, discussion or conflict mediation. Many counsellors will take up alternate avenues; they’ll be skilled in other areas of ship operation, or perhaps they’ll take up long-running personal plots. Kat has done these things to a significant effect. However, this doesn't stop her from exploring the first duty of a counsellor at every opportunity. R’Ariel is always there for others aboard her ship, be they Starfleet, civilian or alien. She responds with calm, open tact that soothes not just the souls of characters, but of their writers as well. The adversity she faces does not impede her gracious, kind words from doing good for those around her, and in these ways, Kat and R’Ariel are breathtakingly similar. Both writer and character embody the spirit and strength of a true counsellor, and I can think of no one more deserving of this high honour. Congratulations! The Semper Fidelis Award - Marines For those Starfleet Marines who have shown great skill in protecting their crew, accomplishing their mission, avoiding tragic loss of life in the line of duty, and upholding the values of the United Federation of Planets in times of crisis. Kiran Han, USS Juneau Presented by Oddas Aria: Playing a Marine in Starfleet, a position with little to no screen time in the Star Trek Universe can be tough, which makes this award so special. Knowing how to portray a Marine, how to play a military character in a universe where traditional military stereotypes do not always work. As the nomination put it, Patrick plays Han as the “modern 'problem solver' required by the fleet”, leading a Rapid Response Unit aboard the Juneau. Patrick can always be counted on to lead an Away Mission, lead to exciting situations, and still get his people home. Writing with him is a pleasure, as he can make action out of nothing, and still make you feel as if it was always ‘part of the plan’. He can always make his action sequences and calls for movement fit within the universe and story we are trying to tell, never an add-on or an afterthought, and always furthering his character and plot. Congratulations Major Han and Great Job! The Lwaxana Troi Medallion This award is given to a member who takes on a unique and non-traditional role outside of the normal Starfleet positions, while creating a colourful and engaging character such as, but not limited to: a diplomat, a civilian or a mission specialist. Charlotte DeBarres, USS Arrow Presented by Randal Shayne: Charlotte DeBarres, played by Mark- one of our most dedicated writers- knows what she’s doing. It doesn’t matter where she is or what the circumstances are; you can count on DeBarres for a witty, sarcastic comment and lifesaving, quick thinking. Mission specialist is a tricky role, requiring both an in-depth understanding of the conditions of a mission, and knowing what to do in case things go south. It’s an even greater challenge to write for, but does this stop Mark? Heck no! He’s as much of an everyman out of character as in serving on staff and providing MSNPCs on the regular while helping along the plot and taking care of business that makes the entire ship run better. He’s a shining example of a dedicated, capable and innovative member, and the character he writes for exhibits these qualities, and so much more. Congratulations! The Strange Medallion - First Officer Named after Commander Sally Strange, widely known as one of the most creative and dedicated First Officers in the fleet's early years, we give this award to those who perform above the call of duty in the position of First Officer. Addison MacKenzie, USS Resolution Presented by Kalianna Nicholotti: A ship cannot thrive without the guidance of a good command team, and a command team without a good first officer is already setting up the wrong scene. Imagine Kirk without Spock, or Picard without Riker. When countless things could go wrong, it is often this bond, and the sheer will of that first officer, that moves mountains. Having a few years of command experience, and real-world management experience as well, I can honestly not be more proud to present this year’s Strange Medallion to an incredibly deserving officer and my very own XO, Matt, aka Commander Addison MacKenzie. Matt does nothing halfway. At the very base of all, his characters bring realism that provides a shining example of how to sim for the entire crew. Because he is frequently involved in Academy classes, this gets shared with many of the newest members as well, getting them the solid foundation they need from the start. Volunteering his time to many other areas around the fleet, we can all see and feel Matt’s impact. While there are many qualities that Matt has that make him more than worthy of this accolade, one of the strongest is the sheer fact that he is willing to learn, grow, and lead. Fear, hesitation, and inflexibility don’t even slip into the shadows of this equation. I am thrilled to present this to him today, but I am even more excited to see the even greater mountains he is yet to scale. Congratulations! And thank you for your continued work and dedication to the Resolution and the Starbase 118 Fleet! Please join us in congratulating these talented players!
    15 points
  3. Today we are proud to present the Length of Service and Special Awards! Length of Service Awards Length of Service Awards are presented to members who have been continuously active for at least a year, there are also tiers for three, five, 10, 15, 20 and even 25 years of continuous service. This year, thirty players have reached a length of service milestone. Of those, eleven are celebrating their first milestone, having picked up the award for one year of active membership. Another six have achieved three years of active membership and ten more have been here for five years. Two players have reached the incredible ten-year milestone, and one has reached fifteen years! We also have two players celebrating their five-year command milestones as Commodores of our fleet! 5-year Commanding Officer For those who have served as commanding officers for their ships and stations continuously for five years. Officers in this category are also appointed to the rank of Commodore to recognize their experience and leadership. Commodore Sal Taybrim, who took command of StarBase 118 Ops on December 12th, 2015. Commodore Roshanara Rahman, who took command of the USS Invicta (NCC-81407) on April 5th, 2016. 1-Year Member For those who have been members continuously for one year. Haley Caden, graduated from training on June 1, 2020 R'Ariel, graduated from training on June 1, 2020 Artinus Serinus, graduated from training on July 1, 2019 Lephi, graduated from training on June 1, 2020 Stefan Mattheiu, graduated from training on May 5, 2020 Noa T'Nessa Levinson, graduated from training on January 6, 2020 Airik Tierney, graduated from training on May 25, 2020 Drevas Matthel, graduated from training on June 1, 2020 Alieth, graduated from training on February 10, 2020 Sirok, graduated from training on February 10, 2020 Wes Greaves, graduated from training on February 9, 2020 3-Year Member For those who have been members continuously for three years. Serala, graduated from training on December 4, 2017 Toryn Raga, graduated from training on October 4, 2017 Jacob Horne, graduated from training on August 23, 2017 Kiran Han, graduated from training on October 1, 2017 Genkos Adea, graduated from training on February 6, 2018 Tatash, graduated from training on August 1, 2014 5-Year Member For those who have been members continuously for five years. Amuro McKnight, graduated from training on February 15, 2016 Jocelyn Marshall, graduated from training on April 10, 2016 Ayiana Sevo, graduated from training on September 1, 2014 Serren Tan, graduated from training on April 1, 2010 Oddas Aria, graduated from training on May 5, 2016 R'Kala, graduated from training on August 1, 2011 Etan Iljor, graduated from training on March 23, 2015 Yogan Yalu, graduated from training on November 13, 2011 Alora DeVeau, graduated from training on August 6, 2013 Anthony Meeks, graduated from training on January 17, 2011 10-Year Member For those who have been members continuously for ten years. Shedet, graduated from training on August 4, 2003 Sky Blake, graduated from training on March 1, 2011 15-Year Member For those who have been members continuously for fifteen years. Lilith Thorne, graduated from training on August 1, 2000 Special Awards The Rising Star Award For members who show great promise in many facets of their participation in the group, and to whom we look to as a future leader. Jo Marshall, USS Gorkon Presented by Quinn Reynolds: We're so fortunate this year to see many people nominated for the Rising Star award, showing what a fantastic community we've built and how many people love to invest the time and energy into making it even better. Those who nominated Jo Marshall talked at length about her leadership qualities; her dedication, her willingness to go the extra mile, and her ability to balance good humour with teaching moments. Over the past twelve months, her contributions to the fleet have bordered on the incredible, showing how much she cares for and champions our community. Not only does she help lead her ship with the above qualities, but she also steers and supports many of our OOC efforts; helping to organise the State of the Federation Address, as a stalwart member of the training team, showing her creative flair in the Image Collective, facilitating the Federation News Service and Poll of the Week. On top of that, she helped champion the return of the Writing Challenge to phenomenal success, and of course, facilitated this very ceremony! Her guiding hand already makes this fleet a more fun, vibrant and exciting place to be, and we're fortunate to count her among the leadership of the group as a staff member. We look forward to seeing her continue to cheerlead, support and innovate, and thank her for everything she does now and in the future. Congratulations and well done! Luminary Award Given to members holding the rank of ensign, lieutenant junior grade, or lieutenant. For those who show great promise in their future endeavours in UFOP: Starbase 118 RPG. Wes Greaves, USS Thor Presented by Aron Kells: I’m especially honoured to present this year’s Luminary Award to Jacob, aka the marine detachment commander for the Thor, Wes Greaves. Jacob also received the Thor’s TOSMA this year, and one of his nominations for that award included the observation that Jacob “has been a driving force on the Thor since he was a second lieutenant.” I’m borrowing it for this citation and to recognise that Jacob started out running and has only been building momentum since. He’s now a member of the Thor’s staff group, where I rely on his strong senses of leadership and equability, and he’s someone you’ve probably encountered around the fleet as well, whether on Discord, as a new member of the Training Team, or — if you’ve been a member of the Captain's Council over the past year — for his keen insights on marines in the Star Trek universe and for Starbase 118 RPG specifically. Jacob pulls from his own marine background to bring a grounded, experienced perspective to marine structure and function on the Thor, and to say that he’s revolutionized how his fellow simmers and I think about marines is actually an understatement. He’s the well-deserved winner of last year’s Semper Fidelis Award (the marine duty post award), and what he’s done with his time with the 118 fleet has not only changed my sense of marines in Star Trek, he’s done a lot to educate me about marine ethos and ethics in the real world, too. But this citation isn’t for the Semper Fidelis, it’s for the Luminary, and I mention his marine work to introduce everyone to the idea that Jacob’s been a natural leader from the very beginning when he generously allowed me to bring his thoughts on marines to the Captain's Council. He’s a natural leader who seeks challenges both IC and OOC — he recently, for example, came to me with an idea for a series of JPs in which Greaves receives additional command training from Kells. One of his nominators said it best, and so I’ll leave you with some of that high praise: “This is a man with a solid head on his shoulders, who cares about others, has fantastic writing talents, and I cannot wait to not only sim more with him, but to watch where he goes in our wonderful community.” The Sarpeidon Award Awarded to members who have made outstanding contributions to the 118Wiki. Sarpeidon was the world in TOS's "All Our Yesterdays," in which the planet's population created a library containing their entire world's history. This is, in essence, what our wiki strives to become: a collection of our group's history and a simming database. Noa T’Nessa Levinson, USS Chin’toka Presented by Roshanara Rahman: Watching the wiki grow over the years is one of the highlights of being a part of this community and every year, new members bring fresh ideas on how to present information about their characters, the stories of our ships, and the greater universe we’ve all built. Since first diving into the wiki, Noa T’Nessa Levinson has shown remarkable originality and creativity in figuring out new ways to bring style and a polished presentation to the wiki. He similarly continues the long tradition of wiki gnomes before him in diligently maintaining not just his own ship’s pages but that of the wider fleet and its lore to help ensure everything is as up to date as possible. Above all else, Levinson’s passion for the wiki and helping other members learn its power and potential is obvious, endearing, and inspiring. Learning to edit the wiki is often perceived as one of the most intimidating skills for new members to master, but Levinson’s joy in his work and commitment to supporting others by answering their questions and troubleshooting problems helps make the unfamiliar task of wiki editing not just friendlier but an exciting world of possibilities waiting to be discovered. Congratulations, Noa T’Nessa Levinson, on being recognized with this year’s Sarpeidon Award, and thank you for your hard work and dedication! The Boothby Award For trainers who go above and beyond their Academy training requirements. These trainers display an outstanding example of dedication to bringing new cadets to our community. Addison MacKenzie, USS Resolution Presented by Quinn Reynolds: It is always a pleasure to present the Boothby Award and recognise someone who has gone above and beyond in supporting the Training Team. Addison MacKenzie is a name that stands out in the Academy, volunteering regularly and long past his obligations to do so. He supports the team with positivity, respect and good humour, shining in whatever role he takes on—be it mock cadet, First Officer or Commanding Officer. Several of his nominators spoke of how fantastic his mentoring is, offering cadets feedback which not only corrects problems with the basics but gives them things to think about as they move forward into the fleet. But he doesn't just teach cadets! The nominations also spoke of how his enthusiasm and skills inspired them to be better trainers, learning from the example he sets. Besides taking part in classes, he supports the work of the Academy as one of our Statisticians, a role that requires an organised, keen and detail-oriented eye to ensure that we track the cadets passing through, and ensure we properly credit our trainers for their hard work. His presence makes the Training Team a fun, dynamic and streamlined experience, and cadets and upcoming trainers alike benefit from his experience and professionalism. Commander Addison MacKenzie, thank you so much for everything you've brought to the team and many congratulations on winning this year's Boothby Award! Quark's Bar Quark's Bar is a special award and is awarded to members who are regularly active on the forums and have been supportive and involved in conversations enhancing the overall forum experience. Lephi, USS Chin’toka Presented by Mei’konda: One of the fleet’s newest members, Lieutenant Lephi, played by Daphne, has proven herself to be a rising star amongst the Chin’toka’s crew. One of the things we can always count on her for is to be a welcoming, positive presence in Discord, one of the newest and most important avenues of communication with our members. Lephi reliably greets newcomers to the server with genuine and enthusiastic positivity and has been referred to as our unofficial ambassador by members of our crew. She answers questions in the Academy channel when she knows she has the right answer and is a constant source of humour and an occasional participant in our impromptu gaming sessions, such as in games of Bridge Crew. For these reasons, I’m delighted to present the Quark’s Bar to Lieutenant Lephi! The Xalor Clan Xifilis Award Given to any simmer who overcomes any sort of disadvantage while simming. This award was originally called the "Rachel Garett Pendant," but was renamed for the 2000 ceremony to honor a respected simmer in UFOP: StarBase 118 who passed away in that year. This is the only Special Award that is given more than once per ceremony. Alieth and Sirok, USS Thor Presented by Aron Kells: “There are many types of disadvantages one might have in a community like SB118,” writes the nominator for both Andrea (Alieth) and Miguel (Sirok) for the Xalor Clan Xifilis Award this year, and praises the two simmers’ abilities in a language that isn’t their first tongue. “Despite the difficulty that this must surely present,” the nomination goes on, “they have become a wonderful asset and add a depth and colour to any scene in which they write.” Andrea and Miguel are to be commended not only for their skilled writing but also for their perseverance in a community like Starbase 118, which is so strongly text-based and when so much of what we do revolves around writing our stories. Congratulations to Andrea and Miguel, and thank you for making Starbase 118 a part of your story! Corliss Fortune, USS Gorkon Presented by Quinn Reynolds: One of the bright lights of the fleet and tireless champion of its members, it's a delight to have Corliss as a member of the Gorkon's crew. In the past, she's won the Order of the Valiant Heart for the realism and fidelity she brings to the role of counsellor, the Silver Palm for lifting hearts and keeping morale high, and this year we've awarded her the B-Plot for the windows she creates into her character's personal life. When you realise she lives with ADHD, and the challenges with executive function and writing that often walk hand-in-hand with it, it makes her dedication to simming even more impressive. She's an inspiration and I am very pleased to recognise her with the Xalor Clan Xifilis Award. Drevas Matthel, StarBase 118 Ops Presented by Sal Taybrim: Not everyone has the same access to support and healthcare and knowing that a bright and shining young writer not only struggles with mental health issues but also struggles to get the support he needs is a concerning reality of the 21st century. But over the past year, we are so incredibly proud of Ensign Drevas Matthel for speaking openly about his issues, actively seeking positive solutions and resolutions and seeking support for the right places. His ongoing endurance is a testament to an amazing inner strength that is both admirable and commendable. Many of us know how difficult it can be to push forward at times, especially with everything that has occurred over the last year, and yet Ensign Drevas never failed to persevere. Furthermore, with his continued positive growth in out of character communication, he has impressively improved in his simming, bringing his character to life, creating a meaningful pNPC that his crew enjoys reading about and forming bonds with fellow players and characters alike. Ensign Drevas, your hard work over these past months has been noticed and appreciated and you have done an awesome job in improving your writing and your communication. I am so pleased to present you with the Xalor Clan Xifilis award! Nugra, USS Constitution-B Presented by Jalana Rajel: I have had the pleasure to write with John on and off for years during his guest visits to the Apollo, the Constitution and other ships across the fleet and it finally got to sim with him on a more permanent basis when he was placed on the Conny. John is passionate about writing, listening to his ideas is pure joy and the excitement is contagious. He thinks out of the box, inside the box, around the box and is not afraid to try new things, is happy to help other players and has quickly become a pillar of the ship. As long as I have known him, despite challenges in Real Life, be it his own mental or physical health, difficult circumstances or overwhelming events, he still did his best to not let it show in his writing or in the way he interacted with the players. Through all his difficulties, he wanted to make sure that everyone has fun. During this last year, Jonathan had not dealt only with his own challenges, but has only taken care of his hardships but also took care of his lovely wife who struggled with her health as well and took care of his job, his writing business, their lovely children on top of staying the spark bug we know him as on the Conny. He never lost that light, his humour, creativity or willingness to give his writing his all, reached out to players to plan plots, help them, welcome them and assist despite not being a member of staff at this point. I am in awe that he managed all that despite his RL situation. Thank you for being you, Jonathan, and congratulations on the Xalor Clan Xifilis Award! The Community Champion Award For members who participate in – or help facilitate – simming community events, representing the best of UFOP: SB118 to other organizations by hosting events, acting as contest judges, or otherwise contributing their expertise in a way that benefits the wider community. Zhanyt Lafizatar, USS Veritas Presented by Roshanara Rahman: In the wider world of Star Trek simming and roleplay, one member has consistently shown up to represent StarBase 118 not just as a guest but as an event host. Zhanyt Lafizatar (known to some by his previous characters of Ceciri Ariadust and Tiria Hamasaki) has consistently served as an event host in each year of the Khitomer Conference since 2019. Last year, Lafizatar hosted the informative panel, “Writing with Canon,” showcasing to the wider audience of non-118 attendees how we frequently play and expand on canon in our stories here in the fleet. Lafizatar has also been an active and regular presence at other non-118 simming events such as FallFest. Through his participation in the panel discussions, Lafizatar helps bring awareness to other Trek role players of our organisation’s existence, how we do things, and what makes us special. For his persistence in carrying the 118 banners beyond our borders, I’m pleased to present this year’s Community Champion Award to Zhanyt Lafizatar, one of our fleet’s most dedicated ambassadors. Locutus Award For members of the Publicity Team who go above and beyond their monthly requirements for regular participation. These team members show enthusiasm and flair for spreading the word about our role-playing community and take an active interest in finding new ways to invite people to join our ranks. Alieth, USS Thor Presented by Kalianna Nicholotti: Publicity, or in a more modern term Marketing, is what brings people to the fleet. Without it, we would never meet our newest friends or reconnect with some of our old ones. This year saw the split of the official Publicity Team into one that handled publicity and one that focused on social media. With these changes came novel approaches and a learning curve for everyone involved. Thankfully, we have some incredibly talented and dedicated officers involved, including Andrea, aka Alieth, who is the recipient of this year’s Locutus Award. The Locutus Award is given to recognize someone who exceeds the requirements and participates regularly in activities that bring new members to the fleet. In this, Andrea is a force of nature. She is visual, present, and accounted for in various faucets, even helping to get an Instagram plan in place for the newly developed social media part of this team. She’s always looking out for the fleet, and she is a powerful voice for us when the opportunity presents. It is such a pleasure to present this award, and I offer a hearty congratulations to her - and to say that I can’t wait to see what trail she will blaze next year! Northern Star Award Given to members holding the rank of Lieutenant or Lt. Commander who show constant commitment to the fleet as members of taskforces and through our other fleet endeavours. These officers are vital to the success of our fleet, showing their support and enthusiasm for their crews and our community through their tireless efforts. Alora DeVeau, StarBase 118 Ops Presented by Sal Taybrim: If you have played on StarBase 118 for any length of time, you have almost certainly come into contact with the name Alora Deveau. Maybe it was through an interview for the Community News where Lt. Commander DeVeau is an absolute powerhouse writer, showcasing members of our fleet from every ship and every rank and reaching out to dozens of fleetwide members to help get them in the press. Maybe you heard her on the StarBase 118 PaddCAST where she helps both behind the scenes and in front of the microphone, bringing you special features and special segments that help light up your airwaves. Maybe it was on the training team where she serves as one of the diligent academy officers mentoring new members on their first steps into our community. Maybe it was in the forums where she is a tireless supporter of the Appreciations area across multiple ships. Maybe it was on the wiki where she works hard to make sure ship and fleetwide articles are edited for continuity and accuracy. Or maybe it was on Discord where she’s a bright and shining star, always ready with a positive word for others. And through all this, she also maintains more than full time simming on two ships, with excellent writing skills and a willingness to reach out and create joint posts with any player on any ship in the fleet. She is a generous player who is always willing to bring new people into a scene, facilitate positive storylines for characters and be supportive of her ships in so many ways. She is a mentor, team leader, staff member and an incredible player. Amanda, the player behind Alora DeVeau is truly a positive force for Fleetwide unity and an amazing role model for junior simmers. Her fleetwide mentality helps make the taskforces she works with shine and brings all of our ships and players in the fleet into the limelight so we can grow closer together. I am so incredibly proud of Amanda and pleased to present her with the inaugural Northern Star award! Jake Sisko Prize Awarded to members of the Federation News Service Team who regularly go above and beyond in their contributions and participation. These team members show dedication and creativity in editing and writing news reports, helping to maintain our IC news service, build the 118 universe and provide inspiration for our members. Jo Marshall, USS Gorkon Presented by Roshanara Rahman: There is no one more dedicated to the successful operation of the Federation News Service than Jo Marshall. Em, the player for Marshall is passionate about the unique lens the FNS offers to the world of Star Trek and how it can serve as a great vehicle for storytelling, either complementing and expanding stories from our sims or presenting wholly original and exclusive stories just told through the medium of FNS articles. Like the best editors-in-chief in newsrooms around the globe, Em rallies her bullpen of roving reporters and editors every month with the organisation of a field marshal. No pun intended! She brainstorms headlines to inspire others to flesh out full stories and contributes her own regular articles. She adeptly manages a team of co-facilitators and news editors to ensure that every ship report is revised and proofread in time for publication, her charm and efficiency belying just how much work she does behind the scenes to make sure they meet deadlines. And unlike, say, J. Jonah Jameson of the Daily Bugle, Em is always cheerleading and championing her team, encouraging their ideas and giving helpful feedback on their drafts. For her tireless devotion and work to make certain that the FNS meets its publication schedule month after month, year after year, I can think of no one better to be awarded the first Jake Sisko Prize. Congratulations, Em! Okuda Award Awarded to members of the Image Collective who regularly go above and beyond in their contributions to this team's efforts, creating images and graphics for the fleet. These team members display their artistry and dedication with a visual feast for members new and old, bringing our creations to life and stoking imaginations. Alieth, USS Thor Presented by Jalana Rajel: In a roleplay that draws pictures with words and in which we have to imagine our surroundings, the characters and species, one of the most helpful tools we can provide are graphics to kick-start or expand that imagination. Knowing the faces of our characters, the wallpaper in our hallways or the view out of our windows breathes life into the writing. Ever since I started working with Andrea I have been in awe of her carefully honed art, her skill and her knowledge. She has jumped right into new ideas and projects from the first moment, eagerly spearheading the makeover of Ship and Task Force Logos, updating graphics across the board, streamlining processes and sharing her knowledge and tips with the image team. It is no surprise that before long she became part of the Facilitator team and eventually was promoted to the main facilitator. In the shortest time, she had made a name for her and has left her mark on Starbase 118 from the first day on. By now it is almost impossible to look at the website and wiki without finding something Andrea made. And when you ask the members of our community, you'll hear the same reaction: We love it! This brand new award found a worthy first winner! Congratulations, Andrea. Very well deserved! Please join us in congratulating these talented players!
    15 points
  4. Ever since I handed off the production of the Awards Ceremony to an "Awards Facilitator" – in 2012, I believe – I've been writing a section for special thanks. Looking over those past notes of thanks I've written, they've grown considerably from 2012's very modest couple of lines mentioning the assistance I received, to 2020, which included a detailed description of the rather insane lengths we go to produce this event – our largest, oldest, and most special event of the whole year. This year I want to jump right into the thanks without further ado because the folks who have helped here deserve nothing less than the world. Let's start with @Jo Marshall, Emily, comparable only to Captain Marvel in feats of strength and focus! From appointment as the Awards Facilitator in May, Em took the job of coordinating everything with aplomb, ensuring that each step of the process runs smoothly. If you've read last year's special thanks, you know that Em also facilitated last year and so now has managed two years without a hitch! It's really hard to imagine, if you haven't done this kind of thing, all the plates you need to keep spinning at once but also how much "manual labor" is required. At the staff level of this community, we value making things as easy and expeditious for each other as possible. We have dozens and dozens of administrative forms that allow us to easily catalog data and format it into tables. We have administrative forums, where we organize threads of data. We have Google Sheets galore where everything must be ordered and colored correctly. The goal here is often to present data and tasks to others in a way that feels as seamless and easy as possible, but often it means putting in a hell of a lot of work to move data from one place to another in a format that works. You can't describe it as anything other than a labor of love to help other people participate in the Awards process, even when it means spending a lot of time to make that work. A former boss of mine once wrote in an evaluation that I have a "high tolerance for bureaucratic process," and now I want to pass along this rather backhanded compliment to Em, who never complains, is good natured, funny, quick to volunteer and adapt to the challenges posed. She navigates the intricacies of this bureaucracy with ease and ensures that the rest of us can pick up exactly where we need to. I can't help but feel an affinity for her, and a deep appreciation for her skilled dedication to what we're trying to accomplish when it comes to the awards and any other task she takes on. Next, I want to thank everyone who had a hand in the selection of our awards and other setup: @Addison MacKenzie (Matt): Who assisted Em with the entire process and helped to get everything posted The Awards Committee: Who carefully read a lot of nominations and made the best choices for those awards. Thanks to each of the following people who put in extra effort for this part of the process and it is a HUGE lift to read all these nominations. VAdml. @Quinn Reynolds Com. Aron Kells @Tony, aka Kells Com. @Jalana Rajel Cmdr. @Kelrod Cmdr. @Serala Our Commanding Officers: Who not only tirelessly command and manage their ships, but also ensure that members of their ship are justly rewarded for their contributions during the awards – which requires reading lots of nominations and balancing them all appropriately, all while simming and everything else they do! Thank you for your dedication, your enthusiasm, and the work you put into this process and everything else you do. I know that this is an incredible lift for all of us each year, and your efforts do not go unnoticed! Our First Officers: Who help advise the Executive Council in deciding what Staff Awards are received, by reviewing all the nominations and making recommendations. Thank you so much for all the hard work you put into considering the nominations! Everyone who nominated someone else: Your nominations really do matter! These nominations inform the entire process and help the staff and Awards Committee recognize the contributions we couldn't possibly have seen alone. Thank you for putting in that time. There's also a couple other "special thanks" for the year on behalf of the Executive Council. I recognize that putting these at the end of our Awards Ceremony, at the bottom of other thanks, sends a signal about their importance. But I want to counter that impression by saying that the fact these are being mentioned here, and chiseled in the stone of Wiki Mountain in our Awards Ceremony archive, should also say something about how important these notes are! Cmdr. Serala (Jim) deserves recognition for stewarding the crew of the USS Chin'toka after their commanding officer abruptly resigned without notice. Jim's loyalty to our community and skilled intervention helped ensure a smooth transition to Capt. Mei'konda. We want to thank him for making that transition as easy as possible for everyone Capt. @Oddas Aria (Nick) deserves recognition as the EC's Captain At Large who keeps the most consistent and well-communicated office hours for Captains Council questions! Com. @Roshanara Rahman (Rich) deserves thanks for taking on the EC Magistrate role, facilitating and helping to push forward boatloads of to-do items across 2020-2021, keeping us on task and making sure things got completed in a timely fashion as well as taking lead on a bunch of projects. Also, for being an open-minded individual who helped foster meaningful discussions that helped our staff understand other's points of view And Com. Taybrim also had these thanks to offer: So that's a wrap. Awards are presented, thanks are given, and we now head into our 27th year of operation as a community. I hope you all enjoy your time here and feel recognized and rewarded for your efforts, and that the joy of being in fellowship with each other is a reward of its own. Until next year! -FltAdml. Tristan Wolf
    14 points
  5. So I was driving to work and today's date struck my mind which made me wonder what the significance of it was. Then it hit me like a ton of bricks... Three years ago yesterday is when I officially graduated from the Academy and today is when I was posted on my first ship, the USS Veritas! First, I'd like to thank @Ayiana Sevo for training me as I was just a mere green cadet learning how this amazing experience both IC and OOC within the community works. You certainly had a lot of patience with me as I look back on the emails we exchanged almost constantly. Here's the link to my last Academy sim when I graduated! Next I would like to thank @Roshanara Rahman, @Blake, @Mei'konda, @Lael Rosek, and the rest of the Veritas crew for the outstanding experience aboard the ship for my first few months writing with you all! I look back on my First sim aboard the USS Veritas every now and then to get a good laugh over how nervous I was when German just happened to be on the ship off screen when the ship had been many years in the past after dealing with Borg shenanigans. Another thanks to @Mei'konda and @Lael Rosek for helping me along with a smooth transition to the USS Astraeus as well as continuing to mentor and helping me with building my confidence to explore the opportunities given to me to eventually help and mentor others to have just as much fun as I've had with the game! And last, but certainly not least I would like to thank @Sal Taybrim, @Alora DeVeau, @Sheila Bailey, @Jalana, and the rest of the Ops and Conny crew for all the best experiences during shoreleaves and missions. Been a wild and crazy ride through the cosmos, loving everything that's happened! I'm glad to be able to write and have fun with you guys! Words can't describe how much I love this game and the people I've met along the way. @FltAdml. Wolf, you're an incredible person and leader whose gift of inspiration and passion to keep this PBEM RPG group alive for so long since 1994 is amazing! With just seeing a small amount of what goes on behind the scenes shows how much you and both councils put so much time and effort into making SB118 a great place to make long-lasting nerdy friendships. And that's just enough of my long winded speech of gratitude. Thank you all again! Live long and prosper 🖖🤓 Dane/Ensign German Galven - Science Officer/StarBase 118 Ops V239507GG0
    11 points
  6. As the Covid-19 pandemic swept throughout the year 2020, it profoundly affected the lives of millions across the globe. Many of our own members suffered from the virus itself, while others experienced the grief of losing friends and loved ones. Persevering through this, our members remained enthusiastic about the fellowship we've built here, and found new ways to connect and share our stories through this challenging time. The Captains Council considered, for this Awards Ceremony season, the ways we could recognize the complications and challenges of the past year. We landed on a new type of Community Honor called Commemorative Coins, the first of which will be specifically focused on 2020 and 2021's events and the way in which we came through them. Commemorative coins, also known as "challenge coins," are a tradition in many government and military agencies with a history stretching back to the days of the Ancient Romans. These small medallions are bestowed by leaders to signify a job well done, or memorialize participation in an event. As such, everyone who simmed with us during the pandemic will receive the Per Aspera, Ad Astra Commemorative Coin, a digital item that can be displayed on your wiki profile: The coin displays our new logo, to signify the launch of our new brand and recognize that this was an experience that affected our entire community. And, you'll find on the left of the coin the image of a spiral – representing rebirth, and resilience, while also alluding to the mRNA sequence (which looks similar to a DNA spiral) of the vaccines which are helping to bring us out of this tragedy. On the right-hand side, you'll find the image of a lily, representing the return to innocence after death and the recognition of grief that touched many of us during this difficult time. And the name, "per aspera, ad astra" translates from Latin to English as, "through difficulties to the stars," a fitting reminder for us all. Over the coming months, we'll be transitioning some of our former legacy badges into Commemorative Coins, and we'll provide more information about that as it becomes available. Sincerest thanks to everyone who participated with us in the last year. We know how hard it's been for many, and we appreciate all of the good memories we created together. You can find out more about Commemorative Coins on the wiki, including instructions on how to add this one to your profile.
    10 points
  7. Welcome to Day One of the annual Awards Ceremony! We’re very excited to present the General Awards today. Each captain has presented the General (Ship) Awards to their crew. The fleet’s commanding officers choose the winners, (or where the commanding officer was also nominated, we called the first officer in to decide) from the nominations made by you! This is your chance to see how each of the other ships did and see who picked up what award. The Order of Starfleet Merit and Achievement First Class (TOSMA) The Order of Starfleet Merit and Achievement First Class is given to members who show great dedication in their behavior and simming abilities. A candidate for TOSMA regularly contributes good, solid ideas to the plot and character development. They also take the time to edit and proofread their sims to ensure quality in their writing. Maz Rodan, USS Arrow Elizabeth Snow, USS Chin'toka Sirn, USS Constitution-B Samira Neathler, USS Gorkon Kiran Han, USS Juneau Genkos Adea, USS Resolution Ashley Yael, StarBase 118 Ops Wes Greaves, USS Thor The Genesis Award The Most Improved Simmer Award. For officers who show conspicuous effort in improving their simming skills. Hayley Caden, USS Arrow Noa Levinson, USS Chin'toka Lystra, USS Constitution-B Tahna Meru, USS Gorkon Rel Cassi, USS Juneau Hallia Yellir, USS Resolution Talas Beck, StarBase 118 Ops Anton Richards, USS Thor Roshanara Rahman, USS Veritas Scotty Cross Given to an officer who shows extreme creativity while solving a plot dilemma or in-character plot twist. Maria Alvarez, USS Arrow Nugra, USS Constitution-B Jona ch'Ranni, USS Gorkon Vitor Silveira, USS Juneau Etan Iljor, USS Resolution Prudence Blackwell, StarBase 118 Ops Sirok, USS Thor Ikaia Wong, USS Veritas Neelix Award For extra, out-of-character simming devotion. This includes, but isn't limited to, helping fellow officers who are in need of simming aid, visibility on the forums, OOC list presence, upkeep of wiki pages, etc. Maria Alvarez, USS Arrow Jacob Horne, USS Constitution-B Quinn Reynolds, USS Gorkon Aine Sherlock, USS Resolution Sal Taybrim, StarBase 118 Ops Alieth, USS Thor Hannibal Parker, USS Veritas Nebula Bar Awarded to a simmer who has shown great imagination when creating or expanding upon planets, stars, stellar phenomena, and other physical environments and settings, such that these settings create a convincing, descriptive, realistic environment that inspires other simmers or enhances the flow of a given plot. Chloe Waters, USS Arrow Lazarus Davis, USS Constitution-B Sirok, USS Thor Laudean Commendation Awarded for achievements in exploration with new lifeforms. The recipient will have shown great creativity in many facets of species creation or expansion, including physiological, psychological, cultural, social, and more, and their creativity will inspire their fellow simmers. The Laudean Commendation can cover many aspects of species development, but should primarily be based in IC simming. R’Ariel, USS Arrow Toryn Raga, USS Chin'toka Lazarus Davis, USS Constitution-B Piravao sh'Qynallahr, USS Gorkon Meidra Sirin, USS Resolution Geoffrey Teller, USS Thor Zhanyt Lafizatar, USS Veritas Silver Palm Awarded to a simmer who has consistently boosted the morale of his/her crew. The recipient will be known to be able to add that spark to a plot whenever it may be lagging, or may be able to consistently bring enjoyment or a bit of humour to the sim, whilst keeping such sims relevant and realistic. R'Ariel, USS Arrow Lystra, USS Constitution-B Loxley, USS Gorkon Yogan Yalu, USS Resolution Sheila Bailey, StarBase 118 Ops Dar Elandra, USS Thor Wil Ukinix, USS Veritas Sheathed Sword Presented to those to decide to inflict mental and/or physical trauma on their character, and then dive into the resulting emotions and choices in a realistic manner. The name comes from a line in a Robert Jordan book where a warrior must be prepared to 'sheath the sword' in his own body, i.e. take a grievous wound to achieve one's goal (in this case, more realistic simming) as opposed to an actual goal of the character. Quentin Collins, USS Arrow Lephi, USS Chin'toka Jalana Rajel, USS Constitution-B Jo Marshall, USS Gorkon Meidra Sirin, USS Resolution Peri Katsim & Wes Greaves, USS Thor B-Plot Award For those simmers who manage to show a good portion of the character's life despite the demands of the main plot. Cassandra Mason, USS Arrow Lephi, USS Chin'toka Lazarus Davis, USS Constitution-B Corliss Fortune, USS Gorkon R'Kala, USS Juneau Yogan Yalu, USS Resolution Tatash, StarBase 118 Ops Alieth, USS Thor Kelrod, USS Veritas The Russ Bar The Russ bar is awarded to a writer whose knowledge of Trek lore is extraordinary. Named for Tim Russ, the actor who played Tuvok on Star Trek: Voyager, who was already a dedicated Star Trek fan before securing the role on the show. Artinus Serinus, USS Arrow Sirn, USS Constitution-B Piravao sh'Qynallahr, USS Gorkon Peri Katsim, USS Thor Pathfinder Award Given to those who have shown great care in the mentoring of fellow members. Jona ch'Ranni, USS Gorkon Kiran Han, USS Juneau Addison MacKenzie, USS Resolution Alora DeVeau, StarBase 118 Ops Wes Greaves, USS Thor Wil Ukinix, USS Veritas Khan Award Awarded to a simmer who thoughtfully develops a three-dimensional villain over the course of a mission or more. Charlotte DeBarres, USS Arrow Jo Marshall, USS Gorkon Yogan Yalu, USS Resolution Geoffrey Teller, USS Thor Sky Blake, USS Veritas Q Award Awarded for continually surprising their crew with unexpected, devious plot twists throughout the year. Lase Ander, USS Arrow Jona ch'Ranni, USS Gorkon Genkos Adea, USS Resolution O'Brien Award Named for one of Trek's most stalwart and dedicated supporting officers, we give this award to members who hold the rank of Lieutenant or Lt. Commander and support the ship's command staff by mentoring crew, facilitating missions, maintaining the wiki and other tasks essential to the smooth running of our sims. These officers form the backbone of their ships and stations, helping to make simming fun for everyone aboard. Lael Rosek, USS Chin'toka Lazarus Davis, USS Constitution-B Samira Neather, USS Gorkon Genkos Adea, USS Resolution Alexander Brodie, USS Thor Wil Ukinix, USS Veritas Maz Rodan, USS Arrow T'Lea, USS Juneau Arturo Maxwell, StarBase 118 Ops Vega Award Named for one of the Federation's earliest colonies, we give this award to those who bring the worlds of their crews to life with art, videos, and all kinds of artistic endeavours. Serala, USS Chin'toka Jalana Rajel, USS Constitution-B Ayiana Sevo, USS Gorkon Karise Indobri, USS Juneau Aine Sherlock, USS Resolution Isaiah Andrews, StarBase 118 Ops Alieth, USS Thor Ikaia Wong, USS Veritas Please join us in congratulating these talented players!
    9 points
  8. Congratulations one and all!
    8 points
  9. Congratulations everyone! Well done!
    8 points
  10. Well done everyone! Thank you all for making this fleet such a special place to play!
    8 points
  11. Congratulations, everyone.
    8 points
  12. Congratulations everyone! Great job!
    8 points
  13. Finally, a place for my genius
    7 points
  14. These guys have worked incredibly hard on an extremely brilliant story about @Etan Iljor's folks and this JP with @Meidra Sirin is just the tip of the iceberg. But this is an awesome opener. Enjoy. ((Counselor Sirin's Office, Deck 2, USS Resolution)) The corridor- if you could call it that- that connected Meidra's office to the wider sickbay was short, almost to the point of being stubby. There was just enough room for a single person to wait for their appointment. There was a chair, but Iljor had chosen not to use it, feeling restless and anxious all at once. He paced it's nigh-non existent length back and forth, back and forth and felt the knot that had taken up residence in his stomach over the past few weeks tighten more than it had done up to that point. The only redoubt he had found from it was in his work on the Skarn Homeworld- the events there had forced a shift in his priorities- but in the days since their return to Deep Space 224, he had not been able to find a suitable distraction. Something in the back of his brain tickled, trying to push itself to the front. Each time he reached Meidra's door, it told him to push the button to alert the counselor to his presence. Each time he stopped himself from doing that, knot ever tightening. It wasn't rational and it certainly wasn't healthy, he knew that. In fact, he suspected his reluctance to talk to Meidra would be enough to fill half a dozen sessions with her. Meidra was in the middle of brewing some tea when she got the odd feeling that someone was outside her door. She frowned, not hearing anyone call to her, and she didn’t have any appointments lined up for the afternoon. Once she sensed it was Iljor, she waited for him to announce himself, but after a few minutes, he hadn’t tried. Staring at the door, she crossed her arms, almost willing him to enter. She’d wait until he was ready to talk, but curiosity was building. He had spent the last several months in denial. Deep in it, in fact. His decision to remain silent was born of a desire to keep the status quo as it was. He had come close to disclosing it to Genkos, but the fact was that unleashing what he had been told to anybody else would force him to confront the truth that Akhbett Jirall had provided him with. His parents had been party to a massacre. He could not stave off the reckoning any longer. It was time to rip off the band-aid, just as Genkos had suggested weeks earlier. He knew that he could not go through it alone. The CMO had told him that the crew would be there to pick up the pieces, but he needed their support to go through with it. He could think of no one more qualified- no one he trusted more- than Meidra. He reached the entrance to her office once more. Only this time, the doors opened and there stood the auburn-haired Vulcan/El-Aurian psychologist, peering at him with an expression somewhere between confusion and annoyance. Sirin: Iljor? Is there a reason you are haunting my waiting area? I can feel the waves of turmoil coming from you from inside my office. Come in, please. She moved off to one side to allow her friend and colleague entrance. Since his arrival on the Resolution, their friendship had grown into a cherished one, and the counselor was a bit overwhelmed by the strong conflicting emotions she felt coming from the usually cheerful science officer. It wasn’t like him to be so stressed, and a real concern started to grow within her. Sirin: I was just brewing some Spice tea for myself, but if that is not to your liking, you may use the replicator to procure a beverage. ::sits on her sofa, pouring a cup of tea for herself:: Tell me what is on your mind. Spice tea sounded like the tonic that Iljor needed. He made his way into her comfortable office, made himself a cup and took a seat on the same sofa that he had sat on the very first time that he had met her. It was still as soft as he had remembered. She waited patiently for him to sit down, and explain what had him so upset. She knew not to push too hard, Iljor always sorted through his thoughts in a quite logical way before speaking, and she knew this time would be no different. He saw no reason not to cut straight to the heart of the matter. Etan: Back when we were on Trill for Yogan's zhian'tara ::he began, slowly and deliberately as he organised his jumble of chaotic thoughts.:: I was approached by a Cardassian who claimed to have information on what amounts to a false flag operation on Bajor, one that my parents were drawn in to. ::he went to reach for the optolythic data rod that Akhbett had given him before her swift exit from the café. He didn't realise until he blinked that he was already holding it.:: The data rod had been gathering dust in his bedside table ever since they had returned from Trill. He had tried to forget about it as best as he could. He had ignored it for the most part, but after his conversation with Genkos and upon returning from the science symposium, he had finally decided to review its contents. What he had read had sickened him to his very core. Of all the things that he could have told her, this had not even registered as a possibility. Meidra took a sip of her tea, attempting to clear her thoughts, before putting the cup down to focus on her friend. Her voice softened, and she knew she had to tread carefully with this conversation. He was like a pi’sa-kai to her, a little brother, and she did not wish to cause him unneeded distress. Sirin: I see. And what exactly did this person tell you? Etan: She claimed that the old Central Command fed false intelligence to my parent's resistance cell that an Obsidian Order operation was about to take place. Their cell swiftly bombed the warehouse where they were sheltering and then 'picked off' the survivors one by one until none were left. Just repeating Jirall's claims made him want to be sick all over Meidra's office. He could feel the roiling of his agitated stomach, the knot there replaced temporarily by an ocean of anxiety. He took a sip of the spice tea with closed eyes, hoping it would calm him somewhat. Given that his hands were now beginning to tremble, it didn't seem to work. Meidra reached out and squeezed his hands in encouragement, her touch light. Sitting back again, she watched the emotions cross his face as he struggled to continue. She had never seen him so agitated. Her feelings for him as an older sister warred with her duties as counselor for a moment, and all she wanted to do was envelope him in a huge hug and let him cry it out. However, at this moment, they were counselor and patient. She took a moment to settle her own thoughts before continuing. Sirin: Take a breath, Iljor. Tell me more when you are ready. He drew strength from her gentle squeeze and he composed himself before elaborating. Etan: They weren't Obsidian Order operatives. ::he said in a small voice that took on a surprisingly guilty tone.:: They were religious believers. Civilians. Sirin: Refugees. Iljor nodded. Etan: Of a sort. ::beat:: They were members of an ancient Cardassian religion, known as the Oralian Way. After the establishment of the Central Command and the military dictatorship, religion was banned outright and members of The Way were hunted and persecuted publicly, for entertainment as much as a warning to others. The woman I spoke to said that the believers were being sheltered by the Vedek Assembly- which does tally with their actions during the Occupation. The Vedek Assembly had, in the decades since the end of the Occupation and the fall of Central Command, admitted to running an underground railroad of Oralian believers through Bajor, sheltering them until they get them off world and out of the murderous hands of Central Command and the Obsidian Order. It was their own act of rebellion against the oppressive Centeal Command. Iljor had thought them courageous and selfless, putting aside prejudice and hate to help those in dire need of rescuing. Sirin: And this woman said your parents were somehow involved. ::beat:: What else did she tell you? Etan: That was pretty much it. That there was a false flag operation, my parents' resistance cell was involved and religious refugees were massacred. ::he remembered a final detail.:: The Vedek Assembly covered it all up. ::he let out a sigh.:: I haven't corroborated any of the details. ::he held up the optometric rod again.:: I'm scared to. Sirin: What exactly do you fear, Iljor? Etan: That I don’t know my own parents- the people who raised me. This changes absolutely everything. I don’t know if I want to know the real them. Sirin: Perhaps not knowing is more harmful at this point. She poured them another cup of tea, watching his expression carefully. This was a huge revelation for him to deal with, and while determining the veracity of these claims was important, his emotional health was her first priority. Both as counselor, and as friend. Iljor considered Meidra’s view for a moment, his eyes darting back and forth as though he was reading something. His foot tapped on the carpet in agitation. Jirall’s evidence had more than just repercussions for him and his parents- the entire bedrock of Bajoran spirituality- the Vedek Assembly- could be shaken to its core. Etan: Something like this could rock the very foundations of Bajor. The Vedek Assembly engaged in a conspiracy to cover up the deaths of innocent Cardassian civilians. I know it was the Occupation and to almost everyone the only good Cardassian was a dead Cardassian. ::beat:: but I never believed that and I never will. He didn't remember getting to his feet and he didn't remember when he had risen his voice. Etan: For years I convinced myself that my parents were just messengers or they hid resistance members in their cellar away from the prying eyes of Dukat's patrols. ::beat:: I want to believe they’re innocent of what they stand accused of. They have to be. But in his heart, he knew the facts. Data on optolythic data rods was infallible and as best as he knew, nobody had ever successfully forged an entry. If Jirall had gotten the information then it was accurate. His entire world had been turned upside down. His parents were strangers, the leaders of his faith were party to a massacre and cover-up, everything he knew was a lie. She could see him spiraling into self doubt about what he had always felt was the truth about his family. He was agitated and she could feel his anxiety as if it were her own. Empathy was a fine talent to have until one felt as if one’s lunch was trying to escape. She took a deep breath and spoke a bit louder than usual to the young science officer. Sirin: Iljor. Look at me. Do you want to know what that rod contains? Are you prepared to deal with the consequences, no matter what they are? ::beat:: Have you considered speaking with your parents? There was something in Meidra's voice- a commanding tone- that snapped back to reality and out of his heightened emotional state. He blinked twice and looked at the counselor. The truth was that no- he was not prepared to deal with the information he had been given. That had been why he had buried it under a pile of clothes in his drawers and tried to pretend it did not exist. Yet, he knew he could not ignore it forever. He had known ever since Jirall had sat opposite him in the café on Trill that he would have to confront his parents with the information. He might not be prepared… but he would have to change that. He let out a long, sad sigh. Etan: No. No I'm not. ::he shook his head.:: But this is too important to bury my head in the sand and forget about. ::he paused for a second and flopped back on to the comfortable sofa, resigned to his duty.:: I don’t think that I could. He reached a decision. Etan: I have to speak to them. Sirin: I think that is the most logical course of action. It was not a conversation he wanted to have over subspace. He didn't want to have it at all- but he knew it had to be done. No, he needed to speak to them face to face. There was no way that they would leave the farm- not when the katterpod harvest was coming up. That only left one option. He needed to go home. Etan: I don't think I can do this alone. ::he said finally.:: I'm not strong enough. Meidra highly doubted that. Iljor had a strength that he might not recognize, but it was in everything he did, both as an officer and as a person. She would do what she could to reinforce that confidence until he truly believed it himself. But until then, she would do all she could for him when he needed her. Sirin: What do you need to make this easier for you? Etan: ::he looked at Meidra imploringly.:: Would you come with me? You're my best friend on Resolution and this is one of those times when you need a friend to support you. Meidra was quite touched. She felt the same way for the young Bajoran, and their weekly lunches had grown into a strong bond of friendship. She wondered how she had gotten so fortunate to serve with such incredibly talented and compassionate beings. Taking his hand once more in hers, she smiled warmly at her pi’sa-kai. Sirin: You never have to ask me for my support, Iljor. I wouldn’t want you to do this on your own. Speaking as a counselor, I would not advise you to go on your own anyway. Speaking as your best friend and big sister, I wouldn’t even let you consider it. He practically sagged with relief into the back of the sofa. Etan: Thank you. ::he said after several long moments that seemed never-ending.:: Sirin: We’re family now, pi’sa-kai. Your struggles are my own. We will get through this together, little brother. -- End Of Scene -- Lieutenant (J.G.) Etan Iljor Science Officer U.S.S. Resolution C239203TW0 & Lieutenant Meidra Sirin Ship’s Counselor U.S.S. Resolution R239707MS0 “Truth will ultimately prevail where there is pains to bring it to life.”
    7 points
  15. The level of drama, drag race references, emotion and worlbuilding in this sim is over the top. I'm here with my popcorn ready to see how this arc develops. Great work @Yalu & @Etan Iljor ❤️ (( Molly Malone’s Irish Pub, Deck 225/226, Deep Space 224 )) The hustle and bustle of the pub actually made Dwich feel more comfortable about saying what he wanted to say; he could speak and let his voice get lost in the din. Certainly no one beyond their table would be able to overhear him even if they wanted to. Hamsan: I know you’re Meidra’s best friend, but you’re the only other Bajoran I’ve gotten to know on Resolution. I was wondering if I could ask for your advice. Etan: Uh, of course… The delay in Iljor’s reply and the uncertainty in his tone of voice made Dwich pause, and he second guessed whether or not he should continue on with his question. After a moment of consideration, he pressed on. Hamsan: ::gestures to Iljor’s earring:: You’re… observant, right? You follow the way of the Prophets? Etan: Of course. It guides me in everything I do. I believe I am walking the Prophets have laid out for me. Dwich nodded. Bajorans had a reputation for being a spiritual people, and while some were less devout than others, one could generally trust the assumption that Bajorans believed in the Prophets. It made sense for them, more so than Humans or other species for whom religion existed. To Dwich’s knowledge, they were unique amongst believers in that their gods were actual, real beings, living just out of time but very much involved in the affairs of the people they watched over. Hamsan: I’ve been thinking a lot about my path. Meidra and I have talked about moving in together, and I think we both want to take that step. But I keep thinking about Yurba’s Second Prophecy. Etan: I’m not familiar with it. ::he said, trying to rack his brains for any recollection.:: Hamsan: Before I joined Starfleet, I was in training to join the religious order at the Kaiett Monastery in Dakhur Province. But that was a long time ago. ::beat:: In Yurba’s, there’s one verse I can’t get out of my head. “If thou cantst love thyself, how canst thou love somebody else?” It’s making me wonder if we’re doing the right thing. Etan: Reading prophecy is fundamental. It is part and parcel of our spiritual lives. But there comes a point when sometimes we have to follow our hearts. My grandmother spent some time as a young woman considering doing the same as you did: joining the clergy rder- but it never felt right. When she met my grandfather, she was torn about whether to give up the order and marry my grandfather or give up my grandfather and spend her life in silent seclusion at the Vandawan Monastery. Dwich remembered his last day at the monastery, when Prylar Ulan told him to pack up his things and follow another path. It hurt, and for months, even years after, Dwich had felt lost. The one thing he had wanted more than anything else in the world was not the life for him, or so he had been told. Hamsan: What did she do? Etan: She wasn’t able to have an orb experience to find the answer, but she did speak to Vedek Vehsajj who told her of a passage from Yalar’s New Insights which said “One must not be sabotaged by the saboteur from within”. My grandmother realised that she was stopping herself from being truly happy and she left the seminary. Dwich recalled the book to which Iljor referred, though he didn’t remember the specific passage. Over tens of thousands of years, the Prophets had revealed themselves to chosen messengers on Bajor many times, which resulted in a diverse canon of prophecies to which the faithful could turn for guidance. In the past few days, Dwich had done his own share of poring over some of his most beloved sacred texts, but he was left with no answers, only more questions. Hamsan: But how does one know? How did your grandmother know? I love Meidra, but I still dream about joining a religious order. I don’t know how to reconcile those two things. Dwich tried not to scooch to the edge of his seat in anticipation as Iljor stopped to take a sip of his drink. It wasn’t as though he had the magic answer to solve all of Dwich’s problems, but perhaps he could provide something thought provoking or shed a new angle of light on the situation. As Iljor set the glass down, Dwich tried to anticipate what he would say. Etan: My point is: ask yourself how you feel about Meidra. I think you’ll find the answer is that which makes you the happiest. Dwich thought about his own feelings for Meidra, and the way she reacted when he finally expressed them to her. If he were speaking in his own language, he would have used the word tem’en, “bright one.” And he wanted to be her ja’ital, her “light,” in return. He knew she felt the same way about him, but Dwich felt that there was something in the way. Something within each of them that complicated their relationship and prevented them from becoming as close as their feelings might wish. Hamsan: I wonder if she would still want to be with me if I–– ::beat:: if I left Starfleet after my four years are up and joined the clergy. ::begins thinking out loud:: Not in a contemplative or cloistered order, one where she could come with me, maybe teaching or caring for the poor. With my medical training, I could do a lot of good in one of the cities. Ashalla, maybe. Or Tamulna. Etan: response Dwich realised he was getting ahead of himself. He had discussed his vocational aspirations with Meidra a few times in the past, but he had always framed it as a part of his past. He’d not previously let on that he still thought about it every day of his life. Hamsan: I guess sharing quarters is such a big step, that it’s caused me to rethink everything about my life. I didn’t realise when I asked her that all this would come up. Etan: response Hamsan: But I don’t think I’m the only one. Dwich looked over at his unpalatable, nearly full beer. It was likely warm and flat by now, rendering it even more unpleasant. Even so, he grabbed it and took a draught, pulling a face as he set down the glass and forced himself to swallow the mouthful of acrid beverage. Hamsan: I think she’s hiding something from me. Something that she thinks would change the way I feel about her if I found out. Etan: response Hamsan: I don’t know. ::beat, suddenly realises:: And this isn’t me trying to prise it out of you, Iljor. Honestly, I would never want to exploit the confidence between friends. I just wish she believed that nothing could change the way I feel about her, and even if the Prophets don’t intend for us to walk the same path forever, she can at least be herself with me in the here and now. Dwich realised that his own words could just as easily be spoken in the reverse about him. It was as though each of them had brought a third one with them into their relationship, a secret or a longing, that threatened to derail what they had together. Etan: response (( OOC: The musical accompaniment for today’s sim is Between performed by Vienna Teng. )) Tag / TBC PNPC Crewman 2nd Class Hamsan Dwich Emergency Medical Technician USS Resolution NCC-78145 simmed by Lieutenant Yogan Yalu Helm Officer USS Resolution NCC-78145 Justin D238804DS0 As you liberate yourself in metaphor, think of others, those who have lost the right to speak. — Mahmoud Darwish
    7 points
  16. The woman, the myth, the legend. @Alieth @Alleran Tan
    7 points
  17. Way to go, everyone!
    7 points
  18. Congratulations to all of our talented and wonderful players! Your recognition is well-earned!
    7 points
  19. Congrats, everyone! I'm sure it was a tough selection for all of these because of the number of great writers in the fleet.
    7 points
  20. Somehow Blake always has to keep up on our tabs when dealing with the Shoals politics and regulations Blake: Let me get this straight for when I arrest you for violating section four point three of the solo operational rules of the Shoals. You want to launch a covert intelligence investigation against the governor of a Coalition world -- a guy who was elected democratically and has been consistently leading Antor polls for the better part of five years -- because you didn't like his tone?
    6 points
  21. OOC - for those of us who've followed the Tale of Two @Meidra Sirins, this was a delight. And even if you haven't there's a lot here to enjoy; @Yalu also deserving of praise! (( Ship’s Library, Deck 2, USS Resolution )) Gertrude Kettleworth, MLS, had very little shushing to do, as Meidra and Dwich sat at a small corner reading table, saying nothing. They had agreed to meet and discuss their relationship, and each of them came with something they wanted to get off their chest. Now, everything was out in the open, and they remained together, hands intertwined in the center of the table, waiting for the other to say something. Finally, it was Dwich who broke the silence. Hamsan: Thank you for telling me this. The words felt empty coming out of Dwich’s mouth. “Thank you?” Meidra had shared with him a terrible secret, something he could never have guessed in a million years, and his heart broke for her. “Thank you” seemed so insufficient. An insignificant, polite formality. And yet, it was all he could think of to say. For her part, she seemed to accept it in the spirit in which it was intended, which made him feel so much better. Sirin: Thank you for being understanding about it. I felt like I was lying to you about myself, and that is not something that I wanted to continue doing. Dwich nodded. Indeed, the “two Meidras” had perplexed him over the course of their growing relationship. Now, it all made sense. Hamsan: I can’t imagine how difficult it has been for you. How lonely you must have felt carrying this secret. Sirin: I’ve spent most of my life feeling lonely, I suppose it’s been hard for me to realize that I’m not alone anymore. ::beat:: I haven’t been very fair to you, and for that I apologize. Dwich wasn’t looking for an apology, nor did he feel that Meidra had anything to apologise for. Relationships were difficult under even the most favourable of circumstances. Meidra was dealing with a very painful truth from her past, while Dwich was struggling to define his future. As Liri Ketel, one of Bajor’s lesser-known and least artful prophesiers so ineloquently wrote: “When you have one foot in yesterday, and one foot in tomorrow, you’re [...]in’ on today.” Hamsan: I guess it’s all just part of the path the Prophets have laid out for us. Meidra sipped the iced tea, feeling a bit foolish. She’d never been a particularly religious person, as Vulcans focused on the here and now instead of a future that logically, they could not see. And El Aurians, well. They only seemed to believe in themselves to the detriment of other relationships. To love someone who had such a strong sense of their place in the world was quite precious. Sirin: I think that I learn more about who I can be, every day that we are together. Hamsan: I understand. You were betrayed by the group of people in the universe you should be able to trust the most. No one, not a Vulcan, not an El-Aurian, not a Bajoran, would so easily trust after being treated that way. Sirin: Learning how to let people in hasn’t been easy. But it has been worth it in many ways. There will always be times where I am not as...open...as I wish to be with you, but it will never be because I doubt how you feel. Dwich exhaled in a not-quite-laugh, not-quite-sigh. His mixed emotions were on full display. Hamsan: ::grins:: My turn now? Sirin: ::nods:: Of course. When Dwich told Meidra that his lifelong vocation was just as strong as it always had been, he too felt as though he’d been leading a double life, the “two Dwiches,” to complement the “two Meidras.” It felt good to get it off of his chest, but it was a potential complication to a long-term relationship. People become ranjens and prylars and vedeks because they want to serve the Prophets, to put them before any and all worldly concerns. Such a commitment wasn’t ideal for making a relationship work. Hamsan: I’m sorry. I should have told you sooner. The truth is, I can’t help feeling that my pagh is still meant to walk this path. That someday, I will join the clergy like I always wanted. ::beat:: I didn’t expect to fall in love with you, though. Sirin: I didn’t expect to fall in love with anyone. But I would never hold you back from what you feel you need to do with your life. Hamsan: You’re an important part of my life now. I can’t imagine it without you. ::beat:: But that doesn’t replace or diminish what I still believe is my life’s calling. I hope you understand. Sirin: ::pauses:: How do you see your life after StarFleet? How would you even begin to know how to transition into such a life? ::pauses:: How would I? Hamsan: My four-year tour of duty is up next year. I could always sign on again, but… His voice trailed off. Starfleet had given him so much, and it seemed less than grateful to cash out after everything the organization had invested in him as a medical technician. Hamsan: I have made some inquiries. There are monasteries and temples all over the Federation now. It’s not like I would have to hide away in some forest in the middle of nowhere on Bajor. Sirin: ::squeezes his hands:: You know that I only joined because I had no one I could trust except my cousin, and she trusted StarFleet. Slowly, this crew has become my family ::smirks:: even Genkos. But even though I am grateful for their acceptance, and their companionship, I can’t imagine my life without you either. She took a deep breath and stared at him, focusing on his emotions. As an empath, she had always felt things so strongly that she’d forced herself to block emotions from everyone around her. This time, this once, she’d indulge and feel everything from someone else’s perspective. The rush of love and strength surrounded her like a blanket and she smiled brightly. Sirin: As long as you can feel as you do now about our joined path, I’ll walk it with you. However, if you ever feel that you need to walk alone, I - won’t be happy, but I will try to be happy for you. Because I do love you. Hamsan: I love you too. And still I want to share more of my life with you. The counselor considered this. What was the next step? Biting her lower lip, she acknowledged that they needed to have a conversation with someone a bit higher up then they were. Sirin: We’ll need to speak to Commander MacKenzie. TBC PNPC C2 Hamsan Dwich Emergency Medical Technician USS Resolution NCC-78145 simmed by Lieutenant Yogan Yalu Helm Officer USS Resolution NCC-78145 Justin D238804DS0 and Lt Meidra Sirin Counseling Officer USS Resolution R239707MS0
    6 points
  22. @Hallia Yellir combines scientific curiosity with overactive imagination and unquenchable optimism. It makes her a joy to read, and reminds all of us that there's more than enough room in Starfleet for FUN. ((Security Control, Deck 3, USS Resolution)) Yellir: Oh! Perfect! I need… ::checking her PADD:: two type one phase— wait, make that three, three type two phasers and fi…— no, six! power cells. I need them for an experiment. Aine's eyes went wide. oO That's quite a requisition for a science experiment. Oo Aine wondered what kind of experiment it was, and with scientists the way they were, who really knew? Sometimes it was better not to ask. Luckily, part of their resupply was included phasers because of the worry the effect the Skarn homeworld may have had on them...and one was missing. And being still docked, they could always get more. Hallia tilted her head slightly. A little alarmed by Aine’s reaction, she looked down, wondering if she’d said something wrong. The security officer seemed a little caught off guard by the request. But then again, not many science officers request directed energy weapons for an experiment. Part of her felt a little bad, but then again, it was either this or try and make one out of lab equipment. Which probably wouldn’t go well, as Hallia was all thumbs when it came to engineering. Perhaps actually learning more about the subject might benefit her. Sherlock: Um, yeah, that should be no problem. :: gesturing towards the weapons locker :: Standing, Aine made her way across the room. Pressing her finger onto an access panel, the door to the weapons locker slid open with a quiet hiss. Hallia grabbed the phasers one by one, and held them in her free hand. Sherlock: So, what kind of experiment is this? Yellir: ::smiling, Hallia mumbled quietly, almost unable to contain her voice to such a volume:: I made a chunk of what I call synthflesh. Sherlock: A what? Yellir: ::Nearly yelling:: Fake skin! ::covering her mouth and quieting herself:: Well… not exactly. It’s a layer of… skin really. It’s not real in the sense that it’s a part of someone’s body. However! I replicated it from leftover protein samples I found. Sherlock: What's it used for? Yellir: Oh, I’m SO glad you asked. It’s a regenerative layer of skin that can be easily grafted onto a patient. It skips the proliferative phase of the humanoid body’s natural healing ability. Ensuring that, potentially, in a matter of seconds and or minutes, depending on wound severity, it can knit back ripped open flesh and allow the immune system to focus solely on clearing out bacteria. It’s a little redundant, given we have dermal regenerators and whatnot, but I thought it could be fun. Maybe useful in the rare case someone is intolerant to the devices or something. As Aine grabbed for powercells, Hallia rambled on and on, explaining her process behind the idea as well as the parts she found most interesting in her mind. The Yelikan nodded, thinking of the security officer as such an amazing listener. Sherlock: That's fascinating. :: handing the power cells to Hallia :: So :: beat :: what do you need the phaser for? Yellir: Well, you see, in non-scientific terms, I’m going to shoot it and see what happens. I want to see if it offers any resistance to directed energy weapons. Hallia’s arms carried the lump of items. Using her chin to steady the pile, she continued talking. Sherlock: Response? Yellir: I mean, my hypothesis is that anything above stun is probably going to absolutely smoulder it. But, you never know! Maybe it’s somehow resistant to particle weaponry? ::jokingly:: We could outfit the ship with ablative skin in that case. Sherlock: Response? TAG/TBC ______________________ Lieutenant JG Hallia Yellir Science Officer USS Resolution G239409EK0
    6 points
  23. Nomination Badges I'm delighted to present the badges for this year's award ceremony! See below for the full badge list. If you believe you should have earned the badge but are not listed, contact your CO. Learn more about badges and how to display them on your wiki pages here. And don't forget: The full ceremony has been posted on the wiki now, as with all previous ceremonies. Awards Chairperson Presented to a staff member that has held the position of Awards Chairperson for an Awards Ceremony. If more than one staff member holds the title, or is appointed an assistant or deputy, all receive the badge. Addison MacKenzie, USS Resolution Awards Committee Member Presented to any staff member that participates in the yearly Awards Committee to select Duty Post and Special Awards. Quinn Reynolds, USS Gorkon Aron Kells, USS Thor Jalana Rajel, USS Constitution-B Kelrod, USS Veritas Serala, USS Chin'toka Awards Ceremony Nominator (Standard) A player must submit at least 1 nomination for a fellow player during an awards ceremony, in any category. This badge can be earned multiple times but is only awarded once per year. A player earning an elite or legendary badge will not also earn the lower levels in the same year. Awards Ceremony Nominator (Elite) A player must submit at least 5 nominations for fellow players in any category. This badge can be earned multiple times, but is only awarded once per year. A player earning an elite or legendary badge will not also earn the lower levels in the same year. Awards Ceremony Nominator (Legendary) A player must submit at least 10 nominations for players on more than 2 vessels in any category. This badge can be earned multiple times, but is only awarded once per year. A player earning an elite or legendary badge will not also earn the lower levels in the same year.
    6 points
  24. 6 points
  25. So all the ships have a thread - why not the Academy? I see some gems over there too! This from Adea made me chuckle:
    5 points
  26. One of the best worst things that ever happened to me on SB118 is two awesome writers plotting STUFF! behind my back without me having a clue about it and making me laugh out loud with it. @Meidra Sirinand @Ikaia Wong you guys are the worst... Keep up the good work. ((Ikaia’s Quarters - Room 03-1122 - USS Veritas - 03:00 in The Shoals)) Ikaia had long since fallen asleep in his quarters. Softly snoring, he had his blankets pulled over his head leaving his bare feet exposed. His dreams, however, were interrupted by the sound of a call on his PADD. He was barely conscious as he woke up with a snort. He was still feeling groggy when he sat there for a moment questioning if he was really being called for something. It could be that someone needed him in sickbay. Maybe? His arm lazily popped out from under the pile of blankets as he fumbled blindly for his PADD. He groaned as he tried to feel for it. His hand bumped around his nightstand until he finally felt the PADD. He ended up sliding his whole hand down the screen in order to try to answer the call. What he failed to account for was that he had turned on the camera to his PADD. So anyone answering would be greeted with a pile of blankets. Ikaia allowed his arm to dangle off the side of the bed. Wong: ::Yawns:: Aloha…. This is Lieutenant Junior Grade Ikaia Wong…. How… how can I help you….? He sounded sluggish and tired. Times like these, he was a little useless without coffee. Sirin: Greetings, Lieutenant Wong. Have I disturbed you? Meidra had wandered Resolution’s corridors for the last hour, trying to come up with a suitable gift for her cousin. Alieth had been looking forward to a particular type of race where she would cobble together various bits of chaos and metal to get an engine ready to get her across a great expanse of land in as little time possible. She remembered Lt Wong had sent Alieth a certain type of chocolate that Meidra believed might be a good distraction. Because Aleith was becoming insufferable. Wong: Huh….? That wasn’t sickbay. He lifted himself up. The blanket still covered his head as he looked at the screen. Wong: Heeey. I remember you... How are you…? Sirin: I am well, thank you. Do you remember me? He remembers that face! This was one of the teal shirts he met at the Medical Officers Support Group (MOSG) meeting. Meidra’s eyebrow raised in amusement as he sat up, bleary eyed like a small child. Sirin: You’re looking well rested. It dawned on him. He had his camera on. Meaning that Lieutenant Sirin had a really good look at him right now. Ikaia sheepishly pulled the blanket off his head and tried to pull his hair back. That went about as well as it could for someone who still felt uncoordinated. His hair was still a mess. Wong: Sorry you had to see that! Meidra waved a hand dismissively at the camera. She’d seen far worse. Sirin: I’ve seen Genkos before his first coffee. You’re fine. I need a favor. Well he definitely didn't have his first cup of coffee either. That wouldn't be for a while yet! Ikaia tried rubbing the sleep from his eyes. Wong: A favour? I don't mind helping! ::yawns:: What's the….. favour? Sirin: First, I would like to thank you for getting my cousin addicted to those little balls of decadence. She’s been on a quest to find some, but her canine may have eaten the tag showing where you acquired them. I need the chocolate. Wong: Oh! Ha ha…. You're welcome! Yeah. I picked them up on Esperance. I think the store was called The Chocolate Tribble. Thankfully, they didn't actually have tribbles there. Otherwise, I don't think I could safely step inside unaccosted. Meidra had the brief memory of Tribbles attacking a certain fanciers’ event on Risa not that long ago and shuddered. She hoped that her former pet, Roc, was doing well traveling the universe with an evil shape shifting alien from another dimension. She also wondered when her life would start making sense. Sirin: ::pause:: I would hope that you didn’t get her addicted to eating Tribbles. She thinks the chocolate was extremely delicious. Wong: She does? That's fantastic! I picked out the dark chocolate cinnamon ones for her last time. They're amazing! But pretty diabolical for a Vulcan. Meidra laughed, and could see why her krei enjoyed this Klingon’s company. Alieth was getting grumpy, for those people who knew her well, and Meidra was getting tired of the random messages sent to her PADD at all hours such as, “Why do ensigns insist on breathing near me?” and “How much do I really need this job?” She sighed heavily, staring into the camera, and hopefully into his soul. She was desperate. She repeated the only thing that made sense right now. Sirin: I need the chocolate. Wong: I think I picked up two extra boxes just in case they got lost on transport. You never know with The Shoals! Anyways, I could send you the other two boxes if you'd like? The counselor’s face grew almost giddy with excitement. She leaned in and looked right into his soul with the intensity of a cousin who had reached her limit. Sirin: Send them directly to her, for the sake of my sanity. Do you have any idea how disagreeable that hobgoblin can get when she’s found a new source of addiction? The random messages, the threats of her taking the Thor into the chocolate nebula to track down cocoa? She is seriously making me want to throw a box of candy at her and run for my life! ::takes deep breath:: I apologize, Lieutenant, please send them if it is convenient. Wong: It's okay! I don't mind parting with them. Sirin: Thank you, if you could be certain to make the boxes Cheesecake proof, that would be delightful. I told her that she could get chocolate anywhere, but she insists that these particular candies have given her a greater insight into her state of being. In Alieth speak, this means she was, as the humans say, wasted. She refrained from her views on naming animals after food, and simply took a quick gulp from her ever present flask. Seriously, keeping your cousin sane and out of prison for chocolate deprivation was a full time job. Wong: But I have to ask - what's the occasion? Sirin: ::totally serious:: My not killing her. Wong: That’s a uh… good enough occasion. Sirin: ::shrugging:: She would do the same for me. Wong: Back at the Academy, I had to hide my jars of chocolate hazelnut spread if she came over to study. If I didn’t, I’d definitely have discovered them missing after she left. I think she once took one of my half eaten jars when I wasn’t paying attention. Meidra bit back a laugh, Alieth made no secret of her fondness for anything sweet. Sirin: Were you still eating from it at the time? Wong: Uh hey! How about we leave my eating habits out of this? As for Alieth….You know somehow, I don’t think that would have mattered to her. Sirin: As an infant, she once reached into a relative’s mouth for a piece of fruit and started eating it. Then realized it was not candy and spat it back at our cousin. ::fondly:: Even then, she had a bit of stubbornness to her. Wong: I can see there’s been at least some things that haven’t changed since our Academy days! Ha! But how has she been doing these days? Sirin: Pouting that she cannot race, I mean - socialize, with her friends due to work. She needs a vacation, but her shore leaves often turn out to be more chaotic than her missions. ::coughs lightly:: I mean, the ones she spends with me, but I digress. ::sits up and smiles brightly:: She is well, thank you for your inquiry. Meidra looked at her chronometer, she had a new junior counselor to meet. She sighed and looked at the Klingon again in thanks. Sirin: On behalf of my sanity, I thank you again, Lieutenant. I hope that we can one day meet in person and share more stories of my delightful Krei, and the lengths I will go through to keep her from going through withdrawal from sucrose. Lt Meidra Sirin Counseling Officer USS Resolution R239707MS0 + Lieutenant JG Ikaia Wong Physician Assistant USS Veritas V239711IW0
    5 points
  27. It's always a pleasure to see talented writers scribing together, and this is an absolute pleasure. Well done @Etan Iljor and @Yalu; this is so much fun. I cannot wait to see where it goes! (( Shuttlecraft Rennell, Outermost Boundary of the Celendi Nebula, The Borderlands )) Awash with a hazy golden glow, the Celendi Nebula was situated at the eastern most edge of The Borderlands. An unfathomably large stellar gas cloud that had held its secrets for as long as the Federation had attempted to cross it, it was best known as a navigational hazard and a place best avoided by all but the most foolhardy explorers. Though not impossible to traverse, its composition made it extremely difficult. As he looked at the readout on his console, Etan Iljor could see why: synchrotron radiation, neutrino emissions, magnetascopic interference and large quantities of protomatter. He turned to the shuttle’s pilot- his roommate and Resolution’s helm officer, Lieutenant Yogan Yalu. Etan: Remind me why we’re here? ::he asked, his voice flecked heavily with sardonic humour.:: The corner of Yogan’s mouth turned slightly upward and he let out a brief chuckle. Their current situation reminded him of the latest chapter of The Belonging Season, his psychodrama du jour, in which the protagonists had just embarked on a locked-room style adventure of self-discovery and -expression. This simple survey mission, however, would likely pale in comparison to the pages of The Belonging Season. Taking his eyes off his console for a moment, he looked to his right, to the copilot’s seat, where his roommate and friend Etan Iljor sat, an inscrutable expression on his face. Iljor’s sense of humour never failed to bring a smile to Yogan’s. Yalu: I could read the mission briefing again. ::beat, in a theatrical narrator voice:: In a section of nebula, so weird, only two junior officers could possibly survey it. ::beat, normal voice:: With Resolution being repaired, I think we just might have been the only pilot-scientist combo hanging around the station. It had been a two day voyage from Deep Space 224 to their present location- just long enough to remind the young science officer why he did not care for the small auxiliary vessels used by their mothership. Two years earlier, he had been one of eight cadets sent out on a training expedition in such a vessel. What had started as an exciting opportunity for exploration and discovery had quickly lost it’s sheen when it had become apparent that eight cadets were not supposed to fit in such a cramped space. Two weeks and many, many frayed nerves later- Iljor had returned to the Academy campus on Betazoid with a healthy resentment for what many called ‘the Class 2 coffin’. Etan: And we couldn’t have taken the Waverider instead? Yogan nodded his shared disappointment. Waverider was far more comfortable for a two-person survey mission than this type-9 shuttlecraft–at least they would each have had their own bunk–but it was designed primarily for atmospheric rather than interstellar flight. Plus, it happened to be docked on the underbelly of Resolution’s saucer section, which meant... Yalu: It had a bit of a rough landing on that planet. It figured, given the Resolution’s last assignment had resulted in a crash landing that had damaged almost every system and compartment aboard. Of course the Waverider was being repaired. Some people, like Iljor, did not have any luck at all. Etan: Figures. ::he said, rolling his eyes for dramatic effect, before turning back to the readouts on his console.:: All that magnetascopic interference and ionising radiation is going to make our job a lot harder. Even at a considerable distance from the nebula’s outermost boundary, sensors were already struggling to identify anything inside. A confusing and contradictory stream of data filled his screen, reducing the sensor’s effectiveness by nearly 70 per cent. It occurred to Iljor at that particular moment, that there were some nebulas Starfleet were best avoiding. With all of its potential hazards to navigation and impediments to commerce, exploration, and general development in the region, it made sense to Yogan that properly charting some of the more dangerous fringes of the Celendi Nebula was a relatively high priority. It never ceased to amaze him that with all of their technology, still so much of their galaxy remained unexplored. Yalu: You’re right. The interference in this sector is 500% higher than the baseline for the rest of the nebula. Who knows, Iljor, there might even be undiscovered planets in here. ::beat, grins:: Have you completed first contact training? Etan: At the academy. ::he replied, bobbing his head:: It’s a required course for all students on the Anthropology & Archaeology track. ::best:: I must have spent a hundred hours in the simulator preparing for my exam. Maybe more. ::he turned from his console to glance at the pilot.:: What about you? Yalu: ::chuckles:: Nope. ::beat:: Well, yes and no. One of my previous hosts, Auzell, was a Starfleet officer, and she served on a couple of First Contact teams. I remember that simulator, too. Yogan, on the other hand… well, I suppose I can rely on my MED 111 course at the Academy. ::beat, off Iljor’s look:: Bedside Manner. I got an “A.” Iljor chuckled as he turned back to his console. He often forgot that the Joined Trill had entered Starfleet with the intention of practising medicine. Instead he forged himself a path as a consummate helmsman. He ran a scan of the region before them, not expecting a clear reading. The Celendi Nebula was not likely to reveal its secrets to the two men. Etan: I’m picking up a slight drag from our impulse engines. ::he cross referenced with the external sensor feed.:: The nebula density is increasing. As they neared the nebula, the density of its contents increased, blocking out the stars and casting a more muted, flaxen quality to the space ahead of the small shuttlecraft. Less awe-inspiring and more like an unpleasant soup one might order without realizing what it was made of. Yalu: I’ll take us in slowly, monitor our position, and keep an eye out for any navigational hazards while we execute the survey pattern. ::beat:: Once we’re off and running, it’s your show. Iljor smirked in reply. Etan: I hope your not expecting a gripping psychodrama, Yogan. ::he replied with no small amusement. He had seen the man’s reading material in their shared quarters.:: This will be a more sedate show. oO One that might put us to sleep. Oo ::he added mentally, preparing himself for a long assignment with little reward.:: The friendship Yogan had formed with Iljor since the two were assigned to share quarters on Resolution could best be described as easy. He enjoyed the Bajoran scientist’s company, and while they had few interests in common, they possessed a similar attitude that made cohabiting in a living space relatively unremarkable. Iljor was a contemplative sort, much more like Yogan Verso was before being Joined to Yalu. Even with all of the past lifetimes enriching and transforming his personality, Yogan was still introspective at heart, which made the two officers well-matched as roommates. Yalu: All right, starting in grid One-Alpha. ::looks over to Iljor, grins:: Survey away, my friend. Technically, as the superior officer, Yogan was in command of the survey mission, but when Iljor had first arrived on Resolution, the two men made the decision to leave their rank at the door of their shared quarters. Here, they were on duty, but their confinement to the shuttlecraft made the experience seem much more like they were hanging out at home rather than at work. Yogan was content to sit back and let the scientist do what he did best. Etan: ::he breathed in and reconfigured the console in front of him.:: Beginning scans of grid One-Alpha. Full sensor sweep. Yalu: Holding position. There is a stream of radioactive protomatter moving slowly toward us, but we’ll have moved to the next grid by the time it gets here. ::beat, sighs:: Exciting enough for you? He leaned over to get a better look at the data on Yogan’s console, his cautious nature taking hold. The information displayed was just as the Trill had said. Rendered as data on a screen, it did not look particularly threatening but if it intersected with the shuttlecraft’s position, there would not be much left of either man for Doctor Adea to identify. Etan: ::he looked at Yogan.:: I’m gripped already. ::returning his attention to his own sensor scans, he began to analyse the data that the sensors were relaying.:: I’m detecting a 0.002% increase in neutrino emissions. ::he rolled his eyes for dramatic effect.:: However will we sleep tonight? Yalu: ::chuckles, wryly:: With this firestorm of activity? I’ll be up for days. Yogan looked out the forward viewport at the slowly swirling, golden-green nebula. He was grateful to have a couple of days of uneventful, routine work to do before Resolution was ready to welcome them back aboard. There were still some twinges in his lower back and soreness in his arms from the physical work of building the home for the Romulan refugees, and sitting in the pilot’s seat of the shuttlecraft for an extended period had left him feeling a bit stiff. He’d heard about a place on Deep Space 224 where he could get a massage to work out the knots in his shoulders and neck, but after receiving a somewhat lukewarm review of the place from Meidra, he never pursued it. Etan: How did you find Oreen V? The topographical and environmental reports I read made for some pretty unpleasant reading. Iljor had not seen Yogan since he had returned from the nascent Romulan colony, even though they shared quarters. With his sleep cycle all but non-existent, Iljor had taken to working in the various science laboratories on the Resolution or wandering the gargantuan Deep Space 224. His conversations with Genkos and Aine had given him some solace that he was not as alone as he felt- but still, sleep eluded him. One such report he had come across during his nighttime endeavours made Oreen V seem like a difficult place for anybody to set up a colony, let alone a group of disaffected Romulans with limited resources. In a way, their efforts made him think of the refugee camps-turned-semi permanent settlements that had cropped up all along the Bajoran border with the Federation during the Occupation. Conditions on a plethora of worlds had been difficult to say the least, if not downright hostile to Bajoran life. But those displaced in the Diaspora were a hardy group- and they had made the best of a terrible situation. He knew that his paternal grandmother, Sobra, had spent some time in one such ‘settlement’ but she didn’t much like to talk about those years. He had tried occasionally over the years to glean some information- but it had not been until after her passing- at her memorial service- that he had learned she had worked as an healthcare assistant in the Federation administered medical centre. Yalu: The reports were accurate about the planet. The environment is hospitable, but definitely not conducive to sustainable, long-term settlement. ::beat:: I got the feeling it was given to the Romulans to settle because no one else wanted it. ::beat:: But they’ve done a remarkable job of building a community there. It’s inspiring, considering what they’ve been through in the last decade. Etan: They’ll bounce back. ::he said with certainty.:: The Romulan people are amongst the most resilient species in the quadrant. Part of my anthropological studies at the academy were centered on the Romulans. We don’t know a lot about them, believe it or, but what we do know is that they thrive in adversity. We may not always see eye-to-eye, if ever, with them- but we can respect their ability to come back swinging. Yogan held deep respect for Iljor, whose words sounded like they belonged to someone far older than his 22 years. Coming into the world on the heels of the Occupation and the devastation of the war, it would have been perfectly reasonable for someone of Iljor’s generation to become disillusioned and bitter. Instead, he seemed to maintain an inextinguishable curiosity about the universe, coupled with a healthy admiration of the accomplishments of his people. Yalu: You’re right. If Bajor can come out of the Occupation, with all of the devastation the Cardassians wrought over six decades, there’s hope for the Romulans. Etan: There’s that too. The smile that curled the corners of his mouth was tinged with pride. The Cardassians had plundered Bajor for sixty years. Plundered it for minerals, art, literature, arable land, oil and gas- amongst other things. By the time the Resistance finally succeeded in driving them off Bajor, the planet had been strip mined to within an inch of its life, most of its arable land had become poisonous, it held little natural resources and its people- once united in common cause- were on the verge of warring with one another. Iljor had been born several years after the end of the Occupation, but as a small child he had still seen the scars that it had left. He was undeniably proud of the work his people had undertaken to transform their homeworld back into a centre of diplomacy, commerce, academia and art. Etan: oO And there are still scars, even now. Oo ::he thought to himself, reminded of the accusations that Akhbett Jirall had levied across his beloved parents. He didn’t want to think about them for the time being- though it was becoming increasingly difficult not to. He forced himself to look back at the readings on the screen in front of him.:: Stellar winds in this grid are increasing. Not by much, but we still should be careful. Yogan’s attention was diverted briefly to the navigational console, and he noticed the same thing that Iljor did. His hands moved across the glossy surface and keyed in sequence of commands. Yalu: Engaging manoeuvring thrusters at one-quarter. That should keep us from getting buffeted about too much. ::beat:: Haven’t seen much of you since we left the Briar Patch. ::beat:: Or, come to think of it, since we got back from Trill. Opposite duty shifts, I guess? Iljor nodded, but looked at his console in an effort to not look at Yogan. He suddenly felt the cloud that had been hanging over him returning. Had his roommate noticed just like Aine and Genkos? Yogan had noticed that Iljor had seemed preoccupied of late, even more contemplative than usual. At first, he had chalked it up to the transformative experience they’d shared on Trill, Yogan’s zhian’tara, but Iljor’s muted disposition had continued beyond that. Etan: Uh, yeah. I guess. ::he could hear himself, he sounded non-committal:: It seemed as though Iljor wasn’t particularly eager to talk about it, and although Yogan was concerned for his roommate and friend, he didn’t intend to push the issue. After all, the two officers shared a living space and were friendly, but Yogan knew that Iljor had closer friends aboard the ship with whom he could share his troubles. Even so, whatever was on Iljor’s mind seemed to occupy him at all hours. Yalu: I’ve heard you pacing in your room at night. Etan: Hm? ::he looked up and glanced over at Yogan before looking back at his readings.:: I’m fine. ::Was it his imagination or did his own voice sound higher?:: Yogan looked down at his controls, manufacturing a break in the conversation. Perhaps there could have been a subtler way of backpedaling from the conversation than awkwardly about-facing back to work, but it was effective. Yalu: Grid One-Alpha is complete. Setting course for Grid Two-Alpha, thrusters only, 500 kph. Glad of the opportunity for the break in the conversation and feeling guilty about the fact he had lied to his roommate, he focused on the work ahead of them. Etan: Understood. Reconfiguring sensors now. Yalu: ETA at Grid Two-Alpha, 90 seconds. The craft rolled slowly toward its new destination, the only sound inside the shuttlecraft being the low hum of the engines. Yalu: I hope that whatever is bothering you, you have support to work through it. Iljor looked at Yogan from the corner of his eye. He wasn’t pushing the issue and for that he was immeasurably grateful. Etan: I do. He had yet to speak to Meidra although he had made an appointment. Knowing that Aine and Genkos were prepared to be there for him, even without knowing the specifics of the situation had made him feel a touch better. In his own way, Yogan was showing his support and Iljor was grateful. Yalu: I’m glad. ::beat:: Holding position at Grid Two-Alpha. Ready when you are. Etan: Sensors reconfigured. Beginning scans. Yogan looked through the viewport at another unremarkable swath of nebula, when something in the distance caught his attention. Yalu: ::pointing:: What is that? At first Iljor could not see what Yogan was pointing to. Given the Celendi Nebula’s reputation to could have been almost anything. Then his eyes caught it. Against the backdrop of the dusty golden gas clouds that marked the edge of the nebula, something was drifting slowly in space. The way in which tumbling gently over itself suggested to the science officer that it had been ejected some time ago from the nebula- perhaps a day or two- via the stellar currents that were found within. Iljor’s hands danced quickly over his reconfigured console, directing every available sensor at the small object. Etan: Scanning the object now. Yalu: It’s moving slowly, less than 20 kph. ::beat:: Getting a clearer picture of it on sensors. The sensor scans resolved themselves on the screen in front of Iljor. He raised an eyebrow and let out a small gasp of surprise. Etan: It’s a Federation Type-7 shuttlecraft! Yalu: ::squinting:: What’s it doing out here? The rounded hull of the shuttlecraft tumbled through space, emerging through the nebular haze and becoming easier to make out. Yogan’s question was purely rhetorical, as the small vessel was clearly adrift, its journey at the mercy of the currents whipping and whirling through the nebula. Whatever the reason, it wasn’t good. Etan: I’m running it’s registry through the Starfleet database now. ::he said, his hands at work once again.:: According to the this, this shuttle belongs to the starship Ibn Battuta. ::he turned to Yogan again.:: Does that sound familiar to you? Yalu: ::copies Iljor’s data onto his own console:: Doesn’t ring a bell. ::beat:: It says here that Ibn Battuta patrolled a section of the Klingon border near the Celendi Nebula in the late 2360s. Etan: So it’s been out here for thirty years? I’m going to run a search on the Ibn Battuta and see what I can find. Yalu: The hull is intact. I’m going to move us in closer and tractor it out. ::beat:: Our survey can allow a brief detour to investigate. Yogan piloted their shuttle deeper into the nebula, which was more difficult than he anticipated due to the unusually dense matter surrounding them. A few minutes later, they were parked back in their original position near Grid Two-Alpha, with a derelict shuttlecraft staring back at them a few dozen metres off their bow. Etan: Should we go over? The idea caused a strange mixture of intrigue and apprehension within the science officer. Abandoned and adrift shuttlecraft certainly held secrets, but whether anybody should uncover them was debatable. Yalu: Good question. ::beat:: Is it safe to beam over? Iljor ran a quick scan before replying. Etan: Sensors are showing that the shuttle is operating on a reduced power mode. There’s a breathable atmosphere over there, but we can remote trigger it’s power systems to bring it up to full operating capabilities. Yalu: ::shrugs:: Might give us a sharper clue into this region of the nebula. After all, this craft has been lost for 30 years. Iljor’s console bleeped at him. His search on the USS Ibn Battuta had brought up some interesting information and he scanned through the documents that the computer had selected for his attention. Etan: The Ibn Battuta reported a missing shuttlecraft on Stardate 48401.32 that had been sent on a survey mission. The ship itself tried for a week to find it but two officers were reported missing in action, presumed dead. ::the realisation that meant for the two men hit him like a stellar wind.:: Oh Prophets, you don’t think…? His eyes fell across the old shuttle full of trepidation, imagining the state that it’s occupation would be in after three decades. Sensors had not registered any life signs, after all… Yogan bit his lip at this particularly grim development. The historical parallel wasn’t lost on him, either. Two officers, sent off in a shuttlecraft to survey the Celendi Nebula. What was that old cliché he heard during his school days? Something about learning from history or being doomed to repeat it? Yalu: We’d better prepare ourselves, mentally, for what we might find over there. Reluctantly, Iljor got to his feet and equipped himself for their impromptu away mission: a tricorder and a phaser. He was relieved that the Rennell did not carry Visual Recording Devices as standard. There were some things best left undocumented, if what he thought was waiting for them came to pass. Etan: I’m ready. ::he said, the reluctance he felt seeping into the tone of his voice.:: Yogan locked down their small shuttlecraft, the 24th-century equivalent of dropping anchor or yanking the emergency brake. Confident that Rennell would be waiting for them when they were ready to return, he stood and grabbed the same bits of kit as Iljor. After keying in a site-to-site transport and setting the time delay, he rose from his seat and joined his fellow officer at the back of the cabin. Yalu: Let’s go. Holding his tricorder in one hand and his phaser in t’other, Yogan breathed deeply in half-anticipation/half-dread as the transporter beam enveloped the two men, sending them into the unknown. (( Derelict shuttlecraft )) The first thing Yogan noticed upon beaming in was the smell. Stale air made the small space feel even stuffier than usual, and the cold temperature immediately made him feel clammy. There was clearly no threat lurking behind seats or under consoles, so Yogan holstered his phaser and switched the tricorder to his dominant hand. Yalu: No signs of electrical damage. Nothing to indicate a catastrophic systems failure. ::beat:: With a quick power transfer, this craft would be flight ready. Iljor took a second to reorientate himself and get used to the staler air of the derelict vessel. He unclipped his tricorder, opened it and began scanning just as Yogan had done moments earlier. He felt an odd sense of unsettlement, as though things were not supposed to be the way they were. There wasn’t much space to wander around, which made the initial search of the craft relatively brief in duration. After turning 360 degrees multiple times, Yogan realised that the unpleasantness he had prepared himself for. Etan: Where are the corpses of the missing officers? ::he said, bewildered and looking to Yogan for guidance.:: Yalu: I don’t know. ::beat:: I’m half expecting one of them to drop out of the ceiling. ::adjusts tricorder settings:: I’m scanning for residual humanoid tissues now. If they’re here, or were, we’ll find out. Yogan slowly scanned the interior of the spacecraft, sweeping the tricorder across each surface. The readout didn’t change at all, and Yogan furrowed his brow in confusion. Yalu: I’m not picking anything up. No signs of decomposition, either. Those two missing officers weren’t in here. Or at the very least, they didn’t die in here. This is anticlimactic. ::beat:: I mean, I wasn’t hoping to find dead bodies in here, but… ::voice trails off:: At least we can recover the logs and tow the ship back to starbase. Etan: Good idea. ::he nodded in approval.:: I’ll get started on the logs. Yalu: ::returning the nod:: Aye. I’ll get the navigational computer online and establish a link with Rennell. If I can pilot her remotely, it’ll be a lot easier. Iljor took the copilots chair, which was a lot less comfortable than the one he had been occupying in the Rannell. He reached forward and tapped the old style console. A sharp negative beep met his touch and he blinked in surprise. Etan: That’s odd. This console won’t respond. ::he ran his tricorder across the console.:: The power systems don’t seem to be unaffected by whatever happened to the shuttle. But I can’t access the navigational logs. Yalu: Hmm. ::stands behind Iljor at the copilot’s seat:: Mind if I take a look? Realising that Yogan was more qualified than he was, especially when it came to shuttle operations he vacated the seat promptly and waved towards it. Etan: Be my guest. With a slight smile, Yogan took the seat. After a cursory inspection of the console, he didn’t get much further than Iljor did, but his tricorder diagnostic spat out a string of text that made Yogan raise an eyebrow. Iljor was right; it wasn’t a power problem. It was something far more mysterious. Yalu: We can’t access the navigational logs because they’ve been encrypted. Access restricted on Stardate 48401.32. ::beat:: That was the same date that Ibn Battuta reported this shuttlecraft missing. Why would someone have done that? The science officer considered the question before responding. Etan: Some kind of classified mission? ::he shrugged uncertainly:: But that still doesn’t explain where the occupants went? ::he ran another sweep with his tricorder, this focusing on biological material.:: I’m not even picking up any kind of biological trace matter. It’s like the shuttle was launched with nobody in it. Yogan’s brow was getting plenty of practice being furrowed. If he wasn’t careful, this seemingly simple-on-the-surface survey mission might develop a permanent crease in his forehead. The Trill intentionally relaxed his expression as he considered what to do next. Yalu: Ibn Battuta reported this craft missing with two officers aboard. Let’s try to figure out who they are. ::beat:: I have an idea. ::taps combadge:: Computer, do you have a record of the crew roster of the USS Ibn Battuta on Stardate 48401.32? Computer: Affirmative. Yalu: And a record of the same roster for, say, two weeks after that date? Computer: Affirmative. Yalu: Compare the two and report any changes. Computer: Working. ::beat:: Two differences between specified rosters identified. Yalu: Who are they? Computer: First Officer Lieutenant Commander Anxo Oliveria and Shuttle Pilot Lieutenant Junior Grade Parker Costanzo. Despite being mindful of the expression he wore on his face, Yogan couldn’t help raise an eyebrow at this bit of news. People go missing on missions from time to time, but for a senior officer to vanish without a trace added yet another wrinkle to this mystery. He thought about Addison MacKenzie, Resolution’s second-in-command, and had a hard time believing the crew would accept her just disappearing into thin air. Etan: The First Officer went missing?! ::he said, surprised.:: I guess that explains why Ibn Battuta spent a week looking for this shuttle. ::beat:: But according to our scans, they were never aboard. And a First Officer going missing in action would be pretty big news, right? So why have we never heard about Commander Oliveria? Things did not add up and coming so soon after their sojourn to the Briar Patch, Iljor was in no mood for more unanswered questions. Yogan looked back down at his tricorder’s display, as if to confirm that the data was correct. Both he and Iljor had run the same scans, and got the same results. With encrypted navigational logs, they couldn’t tell where the craft had been, but the condition of the [...]pit was clear: it had been launched with no one aboard. Yalu: We’ve got limited resources to get the answers we want out here. But I’m just as curious as you are, Iljor. We’ve got to find out what happened to Oliveria and Costanzo. Etan: ::he nodded his agreement.:: Maybe we should take this shuttle back to the Resolution? We’ll be better equipped to investigate there. Yogan nodded. The scientist was right. Perhaps Resolution, with her greater computing capacity, access to Starfleet records, and insolent-yet-efficient staff librarian, would be a more suitable base for launching an inquiry of this type. Yalu: Who’d have thought when we flew out here for a survey mission that we’d have uncovered something like this? ::settles back into the pilot seat:: Should be no problem piloting the craft remotely from Rennel, but it’s a two-day trip back to DS224. Iljor, I want to find out everything we can before we deliver this shuttle back over to Starfleet. Something feels wrong about this, and I don’t know about you, but I want to figure it out. Etan: I agree. ::beat:: We’ve already got too many mysteries left over from the Skarn Homeworld. I’m a scientist- and the idea of something going unsolved make my skin crawl. Their brief visit to the derelict craft had been a roller coaster. Yogan beamed over expecting to find the final resting place of two officers, left to the misfortune and abyss of deep space. Instead, they found an inexplicable situation and two officers whose disappearances remained a mystery. Yogan was pleased that his roommate and friend was as eager as he was to investigate. If nothing else, it might give them something to work on together after work, and be a welcome distraction to whatever had been troubling Iljor recently. Yalu: All right. The crafts’ navigation systems are linked. Let’s beam back and see if we can crack the encryption on those logs. TBC! Lieutenant Yogan Yalu Helm Officer USS Resolution NCC-78145 Justin D238804DS0 Lieutenant JG Etan Iljor Science Officer USS Resolution C239203TW0
    5 points
  28. Reactions to the Captain's announcement are hilarious. I'm surprised nobody jumped out of an airlock yet. So much love and confidence can be felt. Ahh... Nice. lol From Kendrick: From Silveira: From R'Kala
    5 points
  29. I see Ikea is alive and well (and infuriating) in 2398!
    5 points
  30. I can just see the comic book pages now! Awesome!
    5 points
  31. Huge, huge congratulations to all the staff awards winners -- you inspire me and are so important to the longevity and vitality of the community! Thank you so much for the Honor of the Admiralty -- I'm, well, honored! Also lololol at Wolf of the USS Administration. They're the very definition of desk-bound officers!
    5 points
  32. Here I'm waiting eagerly for my one-year badge to brag about it, and you've poured all this on me.... you guys.... you guys are the best, I'm a lack of words atm so I'll only say.... ¡Gracias! And absolutely congrats for all the well deserved STARS there
    5 points
  33. Fantastic job everyone! I'm proud of you all. Together we all have an amazing community!
    5 points
  34. Greetings and Welcome to the 2021 (or 2398) Fleetwide Awards Ceremony! Every year, this annual ceremony is an opportunity for us all to come together to recognise the accomplishments of this incredible organisation of people. For many of us, this community has become a part of our lives that we couldn’t foresee happening when we first graduated from the Academy, but the more time we spend here, the more time we realise what a truly unique community this is. So, we’re using this 25th Award Ceremony as the opportunity to come together to not only celebrate the group’s 27th anniversary (and what a bloody milestone that is!) but to acknowledge and congratulate the writers who have fuelled our imaginations by creating strange, new worlds, and worked tirelessly to keep the lights on, is worthy of celebration, indeed. There are five categories of awards: General Awards (which some ships have presented to their crews already!), Duty Post, Special and Staff Awards distinguishing players across the rank spectrum for many achievements. The member Length of Service Awards continues to grow as we award membership lengths of one, three, five, ten, fifteen, and even twenty-five years! A remarkable number of simmers have been around for such extended periods, and they count among our numbers. We’d like to extend tremendous gratitude to everyone who took the time to submit nominations this year. It has been absolutely incredible to us to read how you all celebrate one another, the writing that takes place, and the community despite everything currently happening in the world. Every nomination submitted was full of deep respect, recognition, and appreciation for our fellow writers, and it should serve as a reminder that we value everyone’s presence and contributions. As our group continues to cultivate and mature, we’d like to throw a special thanks to our fearless leader, Fleet Admiral Tristan Wolf, who always makes time to lend advice for any problem, no matter how big or small. To the members of the Executive Council, Captain’s Council, and those who lead and serve on our various taskforces — no amount of thanks could effectively communicate this community’s appreciation for your boundless energy and leadership to ensure we ALL have a safe, creative and imaginative experience. Happy 27th anniversary everybody! — Em (Jo Marshall) and Matt (Addison MacKenzie)
    5 points
  35. When the team gets shrunk and you run into a cat... I bet Ashley is tasty! This had me laughing though.
    4 points
  36. Earnest, sad, and most of all a really compelling read. @Randal Shayne writes so strong usually, but this trio knocked it out of the park for me. Almost makes me feel bad about Maria being such a thorn in his side. Almost. Part 1: https://groups.google.com/g/sb118-arrow/c/TkDoayUI-08 Part 2: https://groups.google.com/g/sb118-arrow/c/eEbkaY0Rg6k Part 3: https://groups.google.com/g/sb118-arrow/c/4qsGAL3K9T4
    4 points
  37. From "Commodore, If You Please" That's the most Del response I couldn't have even imagined, @Tony, aka Kells.
    4 points
  38. I'm honored that I was able to participate in such a special moment for my CO, @Tony, aka Kells, and that I could help be part of what made it special for him! To all our guests you have our sincerest thanks for participating! =========================================================== (( Main Arboretum, Deck 5, USS Thor )) In his dress whites for the first time in a long while, Geoff felt an odd bit of nervousness creeping in around the edges of his fairly manic last minute planning. The guests were due to arrive at any moment and represented friends, mentors, colleagues and some of the upper echelons of modern Starfleet. It would be the largest single function the Thor had hosted and, thankfully, it wasn’t even Teller’s court martial. Fleet Captain Aron Kells, his CO and friend, was about to step into the truly rarefied air of the Starfleet and all these fine people were arriving to celebrate and witness the moment. Teller: Commodore Kells...rolls off the tongue. Very nautical. I like it. Talik: Sir, are you talking to me? A nearby petty officer was arranging trays of food on a nearby table, designed to mix in with the ambient foliage and rolling green grasses of their small slice of nature. Geoff realized as he listened to the rushing of the nearby waterfall that he hadn’t spent nearly as much time in this room as he should’ve over the last year. It was a profoundly soothing space, most especially here under the wide boughs and thick leaves of the central tree. The air handling systems had been designed to emulate a planetary weather pattern and Geoff found the occasional hint of breeze rippling in the treetop tremendously calming. Talik:....sir? Geoff took a deep breath, smiled, and put aside his small reverie. Teller: I wasn’t, Mr. Talik, but your opinion is welcome, and speak freely. Think the Fleet Captain’s new title suits him? The petty officer placed the tray down and considered his response for a moment before speaking. Talik: Well, honestly...sir...it’s a little...embarrassing to say but… Geoff's eyes crinkled into a confused squint. Talik:...well it’s just...Co’mo’dr is the archfiend of the afterlife on Denobula...I grew up there and I guess the name...stuck in my head. Geoff snorted, rolling the unfamiliar pronunciation around, entirely amused. Teller: I’ll make sure to pass that along to Starfleet Command. Can’t have the higher ups getting called devils behind their backs. ::Geoff lowered his voice to a conspiratorial whisper:: Not when they don’t deserve it, anyway. Geoff winked to the young crewman and relaxed a hair as the large double doors to the arboretum opened. Their first guests were arriving. Teller: Various sirs, ma’ams, honored non-specifics ::Teller was babbling. Apparently that ninth cup of coffee had been one too many.:: Welcome everyone, welcome. Please, make yourselves comfortable while the rest of our guests arrive. We’ll be getting started in just a few minutes. The Constitution was on shore leave; fairly extended shore leave due to the slight issue of not being entirely in one piece, the most notable issue being the missing warp nacelle. Which meant that, after a trip to Vulcan, to detour via Cardassian space on the way back to the Marchlands in the galactic south. Saveron had never really anticipated stepping foot on the Thor, but this was the second time within a relatively short space of time. Dressed in the robe variant of Starfleet dress whites, the Vulcan Commander paused to regard the expansive greenery afforded by the Arboretum, before his grey gaze fell on one of the few familiar faces. Approaching, he raised one hand in the ta’al, the traditional splay-fingered Vulcan greeting. Saveron: Commander Teller. It is agreeable to be in your presence again, and observe that you appear to be well. Given that the last - and first - time they’d met was so that Saveron could help extract the katric remains of Alieth’s long-dead lover from Geoff’s brain before he went completely mad, the fact that the Thor’s FO appeared to be suitably functional was eminently acceptable. Teller: Commander Saveron! I’m glad you were able to make the trip again, I never really got to thank you for the whole ::Geoff artistically pantomimed removing a ghost from one's head via the ear:: well, anyway...I owe you one. Geoff extended his hand in the ta’al but his smirk was far from stoic. Teller: That’s a Good Job Guarantee. Buried somewhere in his uniform jacket Geoff’s padd chirped with an incoming message. With a smile and a wave, Geoff watched Commander Saveron join the rest of the party as he dug out the padd and discovered a message for their guest of honor. // To: Commodore Aron Kells, Commanding Officer, USS Thor NCC-82607 From: Lieutenant Commander Chythar Skyfire, Medical Officer, USS Chin'toka NCC-97187 Subject: Congratulations & Invitation Hey, Kells. It's good to see you excelling in the fleet and I wish I'd be able to present a kilo of our Chin'toka-branded Nip of Winter in person, but with all of the planning for my wedding going on I am not exactly Mr. Free Time. I have arranged for said kilo of coffee to be delivered to you. By the by, if you aren't doing anything in October, I was wondering if you'd be interested in popping over to the Chin'toka for my wedding to Lael. I so rarely do social things in the public's eye, but here's a recording for you to enjoy of the proposal. And man, let me tell you keeping her in the dark that long was hard. Miss you, buddy. Fair winds. Fair winds and following seas, commodore. Regards, CD // Geoff smiled as he pocketed the padd, glad his first CMO was happy and well aboard the Chin’toka. He’d make sure the soon to be minted Commodore saw the message after the ceremony. Compared to normal space the Shoals was like mashed potatoes compared to - well, normal space. Thick and gluggy, and hard to navigate through. When Lieutenant Commander Wil Ukinix of the USS Veritas had received an invite to the celebration of Fleet Captain Kell’s promotion to Commodore, he couldn’t resist. So he’d made his way to the Thor despite knowing how slow the initial journey from the Shoals would be. Kells had been marooned on a tropical moon along with Wil and the rest of the Veritas crew, and Wil had personally escorted his ex-crewmate, good mate and continental neighbour Nic del Vedova back to Fleet Captain Kells so that they could be re-united. But there was another good mate that he had to see personally first. And, thankfully, that person hadn’t seen him yet... And once that person was lined up (and in keeping with what was becoming tradition), Wil ran at full speed in a straight line, and then crash tackled Geoffrey Teller to the ground. Geoff had made the small tactical error of turning his back to the door, concentrating instead on a plate of surprisingly delicious confections from some planet he’d never heard of. His moment of distraction and gluttony was all that his best friend needed to stealthily approach and tackle him to the ground. Geoff didn’t even bother looking up before speaking. Teller: ::wheezing:: G’day knackers! Ukinix: CHIEF! Teller: I thought I told our Marines to keep this crowd respectable. Panting, Wil stood up and offered his hand to Teller to help him up. Geoff smiled warmly as he was dragged to his feet and into a firm embrace. As soon as the Thor’s FO was on his feet, he wrapped his arms around Teller’s shoulders. Ukinix: How’s it going, ya’ bugger! It’s good to see you. Teller: Good to see you too, Chief. Or do you prefer your majesty these days? Wil Ukinix, Second Nephew of the 47th house, heir to the ancient creaky chair of Ithric? Not totally surprised by Geoff's teasing of Wil's potential pending Betazoid nobility, the Human/Betazoid hybrid gave Geoffrey a gentle but effective smack on the back of the little man's head, before looking around the room. Ukinix: ::Cheeky smile:: Is Kell’s Del around? Geoff looked around the arboretum which was filling nicely as the hour approached. Chatting amicably near a small crowd was the guest of honor himself and his husband, Doctor Niccolo Del Vedova, their acting chief of medicine. del Vedova: He’s right here! And he’s his own man! So to say, as he fairly charged Wil and wrapped him in an embrace, and only after that was broken did he reveal the man of the hour (difficult though he was to hide behind the shorter Del): Aron himself. Kells: Hello, Wil, Geoff. Geoff, thanks for this, truly. Aron looked around at all the familiar faces and beamed as he took them all in. Her arms crossed, and uniform collar extended to reach her chin, Commander Blake tilted her head down toward Captain Roshanara Rahman next to her. Blake: I think Wil’s trying to hog everyone to himself. Rahman: I suppose I can’t blame him... Ukinix: ::Turning to Blake and Rahman:: Isn't it exciting! Geoff’s smile widened to nearly goofy proportions at the sudden reunion of friends from the Veritas. It was the first time he’d seen all these people in the same place since he transferred more than a year ago. Teller: Commander Blake...Skipper. It’s been too long. A warm smile donned Blake’s face as she relaxed her stance. Blake: It’s good to see you again. I’m glad we could make our way out of the Shoals to be here. Rahman: Indeed. Roshanara smiled as she looked back at Teller, and then her gaze turned towards Del. Kells: (with a grin) I’m glad you could as well, especially since my last trip out there did not go according to plan. del Vedova: Aw, but at least we still spent some time together. That, Aron thought, was the understatement of the century: Limbo, as the Veritas crew had nicknamed the moon, operated outside of the time experienced by the surrounding space. What had seemed like hours from a removed orbit had been experienced as months by the shipwrecked crew. Naturally, though, Roshanara waved off the memory of that extended planetary stay with a more important question. Rahman: Are you two still an item? Aron considered answering with a kiss, but Roshanara also would remember his habit of a friendly kiss for any of his crew who received a promotion or an award. It would not answer her question. Del, however, beamed and embraced Aron for a moment. del Vedova: Space husbands! Rahman: ::shaking head:: Naturally. The Kriosian captain of the USS Veritas then looked to the man whom she’d first served under as chief engineer before he had brought her back to active service as his first officer for the Invicta Expedition. Rahman: No matter what, sir, you’ll always be Captain Kells to me. Del interrupted Aron’s search for a reply that matched how heartfelt Roshanara had been with a smack in the shins from his cane. Certainly he knew that Aron was in danger of tearing up. del Vedova: And never mind him, you’ll be Rosh to me. As Addison entered the arboretum, she smoothed the front of her dress whites when her eyes fell upon a group of colleagues very dear to her who’d already arrived. She’d normally have been there earlier, but she took the opportunity to take a quick tour of the ship. It was in much better shape than the last time she’d been aboard - leading the majority of the non-essential personnel off the ship in shuttlecraft during an emergency was a memory that wouldn’t soon leave her. Grabbing a flute of champagne, she approached the group of distinguished guests and former colleagues. MacKenzie: Teller isn’t causing trouble, is he? I mean, aside from his usual… Captain Rahman, always good to see you. Rahman: Likewise. I hear you’re doing good things on the Resolution. MacKenzie: ::gesturing to Blake and del Vedova:: And the two of you are looking good - the last time I saw each of you, you were patients of mine. Del exchanged a look with Blake, then shrugged at Addison. del Vedova: We got better. MacKenzie: ::resisting the urge to smirk at Ukinix:: Trouble’s junior colleague. ::winking:: How’ve you been my friend? Ukinix: ::mock offense:: Hey! I'd at least be Trouble's first officer by now. ::Offering hug:: It's so good to see you again Addison, I've missed you. With pleasantries exchanged, she approached Kells and offered a hug. MacKenzie: The man of the hour! I can’t think of a more CO. Congratulations, Commodore. Kells: Thank you, Addison! And all of you. I can’t tell you how much it means that you were all able to make it. Nor had everyone arrived yet, as the group in the arboretum continued to grow, most recently with an officer Aron had first met when he’d been assigned as an ensign, and who was now a captain of his own ship. Mei’konda: Speakiing of congratulations…hello, everyone. And congratulations, soon-to-no-longer-be Captaain Kells. Aron had last seen Mei’konda at his wedding to another of Aron’s former officers, Evan Delano, and he hugged Mei’konda as well. Kells: Captain! It’s so good to see you. It’s been too long, too long since I’ve seen any of you. Mei’konda returned the hug, despite just a moment of hesitation. There was a time, not so long ago, where he stiffened up like a board when Aron Kells’ eyes fell upon him. But this was a special occasion. Mei’konda: Indeed! It’s like a family reuniion, isn’t it? The Caitian approached the gathering of senior officers, dressed in the carefully tailored dress whites that inadvertently emphasized his lean, muscular build. With negotiations for the Federation’s new colony site successfully concluded in the Expanse, the Chin’toka had moved back close to Federation space in order to prepare to escort the shipments, and it had given Mei’konda the time to take a brief shore leave out to the Thor in order to attend a very special occasion. Since his own promotion to Captain, this might’ve been the most brass he’d ever been in the presence of, but he found it interesting that he didn’t feel uncomfortable in the slightest. These officers - some of whom had been his direct superiors during his own early days in Starfleet - were now his peers. He aimed a reserved nod toward the Admiral lurking at the edges of the room, and a slight smile toward Teller and Saveron, as well. He and the Vulcan had had their disagreements years ago, but he liked to think they’d buried the hatchet. Mei’konda: Commander Teller. Commander Saveron. A pleasuure to see you both again. Teller: Captain Mei’konda! This is fantastic...I haven’t seen you since..hmmm...since I got my [...] bitten off by some voles at your Captaincy promotion! I can promise you - none aboard this ship. Mei’konda quirked a slight smile over at the red headed Commander. Mei’konda: If it was goiing to happen to anyone, Mr. Teller, it would happen to you. Geoff laughed good naturedly as he fought to urge to scratch his suddenly itchy backside. Teller: I’ll take that as a compliment. Commander Saveron, do you know Captain Mei’konda Delano of the Chin’Toka? Kells: He sure does! (glancing around) Almost half of the Invicta’s senior staff is here. They were missing a few faces — Alora DeVeau, Quinn Reynolds, Evan Delano, Hanar Tuk — but Geoff had promised Aron that most of them would be there, and it was an impressive guest list no matter what. Flicking his tail upward to curl it around one of his ankles, the Caitian folded one hand behind his back and held the cup of cinnamon tea he’d replicated in the other, lifting it to his lips to take a careful sip. There were unfamiliar faces here as well, some he didn’t know at all, and some he knew only by reputation. Mei’konda: On that note, my husband sends his regaard, Captain Kells. He’s on assignment, commanding the Diligent just outside of the Par’tha Expanse. A moment later, he added to those he hadn’t yet greeted. Mei’konda: Captain Mei’konda Delano, USS Chin’toka. A pleasuure to meet all of you. The rest of my crew sends their regards. She had slipped in among the other guests, pausing in the doorway, partly to admire the beauty of the surroundings. Arboretums were one of her favourite places to visit aboard ships, and she was pleased that the ceremony would take place in the Thor’s. It was well cultivated, a wide variety of plants growing in clusters according to soil and environmental needs. Alora paused at one such cluster, inhaling the scent of the blossoms, their sweetness energizing and almost addictive. From that spot, she had paused, her eyes shifting from person to person. There were quite a few people gathered, not surprising considering Aron’s long history with the fleet. She had known him from the beginning of her own career - he had been her first captain. And yet the man she came to celebrate that day was not the same man she had met when she had come aboard the Mercury. That had been someone different, but when the real Aron Kells had shown up, when so many people had doubted, when suspicions had been raised, she could only think about how hard it must be. He had proven to be as kind as she knew he would be, and the two had forged a friendship that had turned into something of a kinship. Even when he had left Starfleet briefly, they had remained in touch - rather necessarily thanks to their mutual investment. Had it only been eight years? It felt like she’d known him almost her entire life - and she certainly couldn’t imagine a future without him in it somehow. There were others she’d known for just as long and when her eyes settled upon them, her expression brightened into her characteristic smile. Faces so familiar, and dear to her, though in a different way, mingled together. It had only been two years since she’d seen some of them - though it seemed like it had been far longer. Taking one last whiff of the flowers, Alora finally turned and aimed for the cluster of bodies, the gathering of people with whom she had, at one point in time, served with. DeVeau: Man, I’m getting hit hard with some déjà vu. Wil turned to look to see Alora, and froze. They had communicated via dreamscape only weeks earlier. He checked his hand to see if it had the right amount of fingers, ensuring he wasn’t dreaming lucidly again. He then looked again at Alora. Ukinix: ::Blinking eyes:: So am I. DeVeau: I almost feel like I’m back on the Veritas. Or the Invicta. She’d followed a couple from one ship to another. Some had been left behind while others had remained. After her classified assignment, she’d suddenly been placed on Starbase 118 and had only known one person there - thankfully, a friendly one. Now, faced with the ghosts of the past, she couldn’t stop the nostalgia from rolling over her. DeVeau: How are you? Each of you? Kells: (another grin) Persisting and thriving, I’d say. And all here, most importantly! Teller: Hale and hearty, Alora, just like that violet you gave me. Further back, a solitary figure lingered around the edges of the gathering crowds, watching the reunion of old friends. Clad in a pristine dress uniform, Rear Admiral's pips marking her rank, the scrawny, freckled hybrid kept her distance, not wanting to intrude. The only one Quinn Reynolds truly knew was Rahman—and while their interactions weren't the frosty poles of Andoria they'd once been, it was still awkward enough she thought it best to stay away. She didn't want her arrival to ruin the moment. That, and underneath it all, Quinn was still the chronically shy woman who'd fled from almost every party as an ensign. Instead, she contented herself with a stroll through the arboretum while the guests continued to arrive. The sex botanist delighted in the flora on offer; admiring the brilliant rainbow of colours in vibrant blossoms, breathing in the heady scents of exotic blooms, running her fingers across velvet petals and furred leaves. The professional engineer wondered how feasible it was to pilfer the arboretum design for the Gorkon, and whether it was an abuse of power to reconfigure the ship to have a nice garden. A very nice garden. She spared a smile and a nod for Saveron as they moved through the crowds, pleased to see him again. Perhaps later they'd have a chance to catch up, and she could let him know Amelia was thriving. But for now, her attention was drawn by another; the man she was here for, finally alone... at least for a few minutes. Reynolds: It barely seems like two minutes ago we were evacuating refugees from Romulus. ::She chuckled.:: If you'd told me then HQ would pin this much brass on either of us, I'd have laughed you off the ship. Aron was very happy to find himself alone for a moment with Quinn — Admiral Reynolds, now. He’d followed her career, of course, but it had been many long years since they’d served together, since he’d relied upon her counsel as the director of intelligence. She’d had a storied and successful career since she launched the Gorkon, but like Roshanara and Mei’konda, and equally like the officers there who weren’t (yet!) captains, he both relished their success and missed the good advice and endless assistance that had allowed them to progress in their careers. Kells: (with feeling) I’d have helped you! No doubt. She grinned at him, struck with both awe and a sense of ridiculousness at their situation and status. A pair of flag officers who’d caused no end of trouble and headaches for Starfleet HQ back in the day, helping the Romulans when the rest of the Federation had forsworn them. Many of those refugees still lived on Vulcan to this day, a community counted in the tens of thousands, thriving and seeding the beginnings of reconciliation. Reynolds: Valesha sends her congratulations, by the way. ::The Romulan scientist had been one of those refugees, and both Quinn and Aron had taken a special interest in her career.:: She's doing well. Kells: I’ve heard! Lieutenant already? I’m glad she’s done so well, and that she’s been with you for most of her career. Not that she needs one of us to keep an eye on her, but — you know. However, whatever else they might have said was truncated, as Geoff had obviously noticed Aron’s absence from the main group, and called for everyone to be seated. With the guests assembled the attention returned to Geoff, who nodded respectfully to his CO and then to Admiral Reynolds as he approached the small podium placed directly in front of the great tree. It seemed to Geoff a worthy backdrop for this rare, special ceremony. He waited patiently at the podium, not bothering to raise his voice and within moments, the room grew hushed on its own accord with a shared sense of anticipation. When the silence was complete, Geoff spoke in clipped, clear tones that carried across the room. Teller: Attention to Orders, Please. Attention to Orders. Fleet Captain Aron Kells, please step forward sir. Aron did so, with aplomb. Or as much aplomb as he thought he could handle, given the circumstances. Kells: Here and ready, Geoff. Teller: Thank you, sir. Rear Admiral Quinn Reynolds, would you step forward please ma..::Geoff barely caught himself in time.::...would you step forward please. Kells: (muttering) Good save. With an arched eyebrow and the hint of a smirk cast in the direction of both men, the Admiral stepped up to the podium as requested. Heart thrumming in her chest, she smiled through a deep breath. Over the years, she had learnt to keep the timorous tremor out of her voice, still the anxious fidgeting that wanted to erupt when dozens of eyes were upon her. But she was here for Aron, and the desire to honour and celebrate her friend made it easier to bury the nerves. Reynolds: I'd like to first thank you all for coming. There are a lot of familiar faces here, and I know how pleased Aron is to see you all. It speaks to how many lives he's touched, and how important he is to so many. Geoff stepped aside and retrieved the small decorative box which seemed unusually heavy in his hand. From here on out the attention of the entire room fixated on the two people standing front and center. Reynolds: Those of you who know me are already well aware that I loathe public speaking. For those of you who don't; it takes a very special event, or a very special person, to lure me to the front of a crowd. Today fulfils both requirements. As Quinn began to speak, Aron found that Del’s earlier save with Roshanara had been for naught, as he started to tear up anyway. He broke his gaze away from her and gazed out at his friends, but that was even worse. The people gathered in the arboretum represented decades upon decades of memories and experiences, and if he was looking for an escape, they were not it. Not that he was looking for an escape. It was just — after all he’d been through recently, from Calabrum and the Zet to nearly dying on New Bajor, he wasn’t sure if he’d thought a moment like this — not even the promotion, but where he was able to gather with so many of his friends — would ever happen again. Even by Caitian standards, the room had grown quiet but for Admiral Reynolds and the ever present subtle rush of a starship’s life support systems functioning around them. Mei’konda kept his ears angled toward the two standing together as Kells’ only superior officer in the room continued speaking, and Mei’konda stood silently with his fellow officers. It was one of those rare occasions that he’d come to savor in Starfleet - as much reward as he felt when he was able to promote or offer commendations to his own officers, there was something particularly special about being invited to witness one of his old Captains being recognized like this. Reynolds: I first served with Aron over ten years ago. He was a science officer under my command on the Drake, and we had a few... interesting adventures together. ::She grinned at him for a moment, a shared joke twinkling in her hazel eyes, and then continued.:: He was one of the finest scientists I've served with, and I valued his keen insight, quick wits and his ability to keep a clear head under pressure. They had shared just about every professional dynamic there was in Starfleet: subordinate, superior and peer. It had forged a respect and understanding few shared, and though—or perhaps because—there had been some bumps along the way, Aron’s friendship was one she treasured. Distance made it harder, but her fondness had not diminished with time. Reynolds: It was a few years later, when I served under his command aboard the Mercury—and later, the Garuda—when we became friends, and someone I still trust to this day to offer me sage advice when I need it. As well as my friend, he's been my teacher; I strive to emulate his diplomatic finesse in all situations, and his ability to cut to the heart of a problem. It is my firm belief he is one of the most exceptional officers in Starfleet, and I'm beyond honoured and pleased to be here today to recognise his ability, his compassion, his loyalty, and his dedication to all those he serves with. Quinn looked expectantly toward the red-haired Commander. Geoff lowered his voice and leaned in, waggling the Commodores pips. He couldn’t hold back a small smirk. Teller: Last chance to change your mind and pin these on me, Admiral. Reynolds: You shouldn't play with fire, Commander. ::Her eyebrows twitched upward as she responded just as quietly.:: You might get burned. Geoff stifled a laugh and opened the small box, profferring its contents to the Admiral, and she turned back toward Kells with pips in hand. For Teller, the challenge of the day had instantly been made worthwhile when he saw the look of profound gratitude and deep joy on his CO’s normally reserved face. Reynolds: Fleet Captain Aron Kells, it is my privilege to promote you to the rank of Commodore, with all the associated rights and responsibilities. ::Then, more softly,:: You’ve done us all proud, Aron. Kells: (quietly) Thank you. (more loudly) Truly, thank you. I can’t fully express how much it means to have you all here. And then came the moment. Quinn had the single-gold-pip-on-black of the commodore ready to go, and the moment itself — the pinning — was over in a moment. His new insignia gleaming under the arboretum lights, she dropped her hands onto his shoulders. Then, with an impish smile, she copied his favourite trick and rose up onto her tiptoes to press a kiss to the new commodore’s cheek. Reynolds: Congratulations, Commodore Kells. Teller: Three cheers for Commodore Kells! HipHip! The quiet of the Arboretum was broken by the thunder of applause and the shouts of hurrah ringing from the walls. But then the applause. Oh, the applause! This time, Aron tried to return the room to its former quiet, and he locked eyes with everyone there as he gazed around. Kells: Without each of you, I wouldn’t be here. That you’re here to celebrate the continuation of what I love to do — it means so much. Maybe it’s inadequate to keep saying so, but: thank you. Teller: My sincerest thanks to all of our visiting guests, you’ll be receiving complimentary gift bags on your way back to the shuttlebay or transporter pads. Officers and Crew of the Thor...please assemble front and center. The Commodore isn’t the only one we’re celebrating today! Mei’konda couldn’t help a subtle flattening of his ears, this time. There was such noise, and his ears were sensitive. But he participated nonetheless, the broad smile on his short muzzle exposing his sharp teeth while he clapped in turn with the others. Later, he’d share time with the others, perhaps take a brief tour of the Thor considering that he’d never been aboard a Vesta class ship before, and catch a shuttle back to the Chin’toka late in the evening. Mei’konda: Congratulations, everyone - and thaank you for the invitation! Responses: ? END! =================================== Commodore Aron Kells Commanding Officer USS Thor V238208LV0 he/him/his (character & player) & Commander Geoffrey Teller Executive Officer USS Thor - NCC 82607 Commodore A. Kells, Commanding V239509GT0 with special guests (in order of appearance) Commander Saveron First Officer USS Constitution-B R238802S10 Lieutenant Commander Chythar Skyfire, MD Medical Officer / Barista USS Chin’toka NCC-97187 O239002CS0 Lieutenant Commander Wil Ukinix Chief Engineer, Second Officer USS Veritas V239511WU0 Cmdr Sky Blake Executive Officer USS Veritas C238803SB0 Captain Roshanara Rahman Commanding Officer, USS Veritas I238705TZ0 Commander Addison MacKenzie, M.D., Ph.D., FASFS First Officer USS Resolution V239601AM0 Captain Mei’konda Delano Commanding Officer USS Chin’toka, NCC-97187 M239002M10 Lt. Cmdr. Alora DeVeau First Officer Starbase 118 Ops alora@blar.net M239008AD0 Rear Admiral Quinn Reynolds Commanding Officer USS Gorkon T238401QR0
    4 points
  39. A nod to the great @Lephi who dropped in on Resolution just long enough to grace us with this gem:
    4 points
  40. @John Kendrick I woke up from a nap, read that response, and given I'd just woken up, had no ability to hold back the good hearty laugh I let out about Kendrick's thought processes. He may have succeeded in not laughing right there but I gave a laugh for him. He's a whole mood.
    4 points
  41. @Vitor S. Silveira observant as always 😄
    4 points
  42. As a DnD nerd, I thought @Tracey/Ensign Thorne's comment was pretty hilarious!
    4 points
  43. Congratulations to all awarded. And also to those that weren't. We have a great Fleet.
    4 points
  44. Congrats to all. So glad to see many crew mates former and current (as well as others I have simmed with) get much deserved love and respect.
    4 points
  45. Thank you so much for all the awards team effort to review and evaluate every nomination submission! There has been EXCELLENT writing this year, no matter how CRAZY the world has been, and you all deserve to be praised to the moon and back
    4 points
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