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Randal Shayne

Ensign Keneth Nakada - Back on Board

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(( Hall 1, Deck 16, Starbase 821 ))

 

Nakada: Commander, who can I speak to about getting back on board the ship? I’d like to help out with the repairs. I have little other work on board the station anyway.

 

Shayne: Good man. I’ll speak to the dock master, but don’t forget- you’ve got enough on your plate already. That paperwork isn’t going to finish itself, and right now, you’re the ranking engineering officer.

 

Keneth was a bit confused for a second, before he caught on, mentally facepalming himself. He was being told to submit the engineering reports, which, considering he was the only engineering officer onboard at the moment, made sense. The tactical officer seemed to have come to a similar conclusion

 

Serinus: Yes sir, seeing as there are currently no Tactical Officers assigned to the Arrow, at least to my knowledge, is it safe to assume that those responsibilities fall on me, as well?

 

Shayne: At least for the time being, yes. I will be reassessing that regularly, but for now, you are our duly notarized Security and Tactical officer. I assume you’re up for it? 

He didn’t hear the officer’s response, mentally dividing his work. He definitely had It cut out for himself. He was brought back by a curt silence, followed by the realization that the others were watching him.

 

Nakada: Sorry. Yes, sir. I’ll get to the report immediately. Should be done well before we launch.

 

He nodded and turned away, heading towards the turbolift. It was time to see how the ship was doing.

 

(( Main Engineering, Deck 3, USS Arrow ))

 

So, update. The ship was doing fantastically, all things considered. It seemed the starbase crew had given up on the existing warp core after it had “emitted puffs of lemon-scented black vapor and spilled its coolant matrix onto the deck” or as the dock master had put it “it threw up so we yanked it”. They had just replaced the entire assembly, which was surprisingly simple, owing to the existing ejection mechanisms. The new core was purring soundly, plus had a minor upgrade so they could actually sustain Warp 5 without sacrificing other systems, such as the secondary medical computer.

 

He had helped them with the rest of the deck, which had been completely cleaned up with fresh teal paneling, uncracked displays and a spotless floor to top it off. The modularity was a blessing. Entire consoles were just … removed and replaced. In some ways, the urgency of the situation was an agent as well. He was pretty sure they wouldn’t have gotten unlimited use of the industrial replicators without some pulled strings somewhere.

 

There were hidden signs of the expedited timeline though. His audit had revealed that much of the power system had been hastily patched around. While the damaged and destroyed hardware had been cleared, some of the work was … unfavorable. They had had to run nearly all the weapons through just two relays, which was uncomfortably non-redundant, but the remaining lines had been completely trashed and they did not have the time to replace them.

 

He had then proceeded to ask where the holodeck was, so that they could take it offline for the time being. This had lead to a half an hour search, after which a crewman had the excellent sense to consult the computer. The computer had cheekily (that might have been in his head) replied that the only recreational facility onboard was a gymnasium. Keneth just shook his head. The ship was quite old and had been built for the war - at least this meant one less power draw on the system.

 

He’d finished up his report toward late evening, as the starbase personnel had finally departed, leaving an unrecognizable deck and a lonesome PADfD full of data. His quarters were a deck below, which suited him just fine. It meant that it was less likely somebody would show up at two in the morning with an inane request like “should we light the warp core yellow or blue today” or “Dan caught his beard on a plasma conduit” or “can we have a toilet near the Jefferies tube”. For the billionth time, no, he was not going to ask Commander Shayne for a toilet near … how did they even come up with this?

 

In other news, he’d finally trimmed his beard to a less scraggly windswept look, which Crewman Patrick had chided him for. You should look wild!, he’d proclaimed while he stroked his own gigantic face plumes. Keneth told him that any more hair on board and they’d collectively clog the air ducts.

 

Overall, when he sat down on the big chair in his room, he was feeling quite satisfied. He was somewhat nervous about what they were heading into though. Those kind of numbers were last seen … Romulus. He suddenly realized what had been irking him. For all the amazing work the crew had done, they had absolutely no idea what kind of horror show they were about to arrive in. They were a small, weakish ship by any reasonable metric.

 

Starfleet’s main strength has always been it’s people, he reminded himself. They didn’t really churn out officers like the Klingons. It took years of training, resources and dedication to graduate. Their best hope, like always, was to simply outsmart the enemy. He fidgeted with his hot chocolate, his fourth that day, especially since he discovered they had a caffeinated version.

 

There would be more information at the briefing he console himself, as he forced himself to doze off into a fitful sleep. Just outside, the stars burned bright into the void that they would soon be back in.

 

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