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Addison MacKenzie

Captains Council observer
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Addison MacKenzie last won the day on June 29

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About Addison MacKenzie

  • Birthday 08/12/1987

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    Cleveland, Ohio
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    He/Him/His

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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!
  2. 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!
  3. I'm so happy to have @Geoffrey Teller guesting with us on the Resolution for this mission. I'm always amazed by his ability to find his way inside a character with very little information to go on and yet, he's incredibly descriptive and elusive at the same time! ((A Grove of Seven Trees, Memorial Forest, Thama Homeworld)) A warm breeze flitted through the graceful, slender branches of the l'far trees, filling the grove with a gentle rustling that Ashal Koas found pleasant and soothing. Her spade dug into the rich black dark soil easily as it had for the last two hours, shifting the dirt aside and forming a small mound nearby. With each load of soil moved she got closer to her goal but her pace was unhurried and regular. Even here, in the company of those she held most dear, she didn't risk letting her mask slip. Not now. Not when she was so close. Another scoop of dirt set aside, and she was a step closer to finishing her journey. The wind gusted, the l'far trees swaying, the light playing off their crystalline leaves. She could hear them speaking to her. They encouraged her when she had lost faith and purpose. They gently reminded her of her sworn promise. If she closed her eyes, she could hear their voices again. She was so near to them, now. Closer than she had been since the accident. Her expression remained neutral, but the next thrust of the shovel bit into the soil more deeply. She had planted these trees seven years earlier when she was just sixteen years old. She'd cared for them and nurtured them across the years, as they had cared for her, serving as her sounding board and confidants when she grew dejected or uncertain. The living cenotaph to her family, here in a hidden corner of the Great Memorial Forest, was the keeper of her secrets. It would not need to be for much longer. The wind shifted again and she could hear the voices of the other children, her brothers and sisters. They laughed and sang, which always made Ashal smile during the darkest times. Ashal looked towards the smallest tree in the grove, named in honor of her younger brother Ascal. He was always the first to joke, the first to tease his sister when she got into one of her intense moods. Branches shook and leaves whispered, a music knowable only to her. Koas: Don't be difficult, Ascal! You're always such a troublemaker, getting your branches tangled. Dotra and Jimberline never cause as much of a fuss. The other two smaller trees offered no immediate response. Ashal continued digging without pause, carrying on with her conversation. Koas: We've spoken about this before and you know why I have to go. This is everything we've hoped for. I've been assigned to the negiogation team as a junior diplomat. No one questioned it. Ambassador Niran chose me personally. The smallest tree in the grove fell silent. Ashal dug for a while longer, then stepped up and out of the void she had created, satisfied. They were ready for the saplings. Her people had few traditions that could be considered spiritual, but this ancient practice had grown with the Thama, much like the memorial trees themselves. New life born out of loss. It was the great cycle of all living systems and the Thama, more than anything else, respected the sanctity of life. She moved the first sapling into position, gently placing it where she should've been, among her brothers and sisters, reciting the old words for the eight time. Koas: For those that slumber, let these leaves give shade. For those that hunger, let these branches bear fruit. For those that suffer, let this sapling take root and grow tall. May new life blossom here as it withers elsewhere. This is the cycle. She spoke the tree's name aloud, then pressed the soil down with bare hands. Her meticulously precise facade didn't waiver, but a tear escaped from her eye and fell upon the soil. The second sapling was moved into position, low and away from the family of trees. Ashal tried to repeat the litany without emotion creeping in, only the subtlest notes of cold rage tinging her words. Koas: For those that slumber, let these leaves give shade. For those that hunger, let these branches bear fruit. For those that suffer...::Ashal looked back towards her family and felt their eyes upon her. This was her final gift.:: Let this sapling take root and grow tall. May new life blossom here as it withers elsewhere. This is the cycle. She spoke the tree's name aloud with venom enough to wilt the nearby grass. It was the first time a Nascaik had ever been honored with a tree in the Great Forest, but Ashal believed strongly in the tradition. New life born out of loss. Something to blossom while something else withered. She pressed the soil into place and turned to face her family one final time. Their voices had grown still but she could feel their warm embrace. She longed to be with them, and looked lovingly at the sapling. Koas: You're home now, little Ashal. Grow strong and tall for me, here with your family. I have to go now but it will be fine. This is the cycle. The breeze picked up once again, rustling and whispering in the branches around them. As she changed out of her soiled work clothes and into something more befitting a junior diplomat, Ashal heard the voices of her parents and her siblings. She heard them calling out to her, demanding justice. They didn't wish to burden her so, but she was all that remained. It had to be her. By the time she stepped out of the Memorial Forest for the very last time, Ashal Koas had renewed her resolve. She would see her plan through to the very end, as she had promised all those years ago. She felt a calm elation as she returned to her offices, just one junior bureaucrat among many returning from midday break. She imagined the grove and smiled. Something wonderful would blossom there. While something else withered. [End] ==================================== Ashal Koas Junior Assistant to the Ambassador Thama Scientific Sovereignty V239509GT0
  4. (( Prime ministerial offices, Vman – Da’al capital city )) ((OOC: I paraphrased and took inspiration from Philippe Pétain’s speech to the people of France from 1941.)) Ypartin: Are we ready? Speaking to a junior staff member in his office, of whose name he wasn’t certain enough to attempt, Ypartin impatiently awaited the all-clear. The text had been written, checked, re-checked, and approved by all of the necessary people. He had spent much of the afternoon committing the finer points to memory, but also had it programmed into the viewscreen opposite him just in case. The staff member nodded. Ypartin quickly tucked the tails of his tunic back in and resumed a more premierial posture at his massive, hand-carved desk. A trio of technicians checked the transmission and one of them adjusted Ypartin’s collar. In just a moment, all media outlets on the planets and the outlying colonies would cease their regular programming at the notice of an important address from the prime minister. The destiny of Da’al, and Ypartin himself, would be written tonight. Taking a deep breath, Ypartin adopted a stern, yet compassionate expression. Ypartin: My dear people of Da’al. I speak to you this evening, not to burden you with weighty words, but to share with you information from your government which you have a right to know. So far, so good. Ypartin punctuated his first statement with a longer-than-average pause, then continued. Ypartin: For some time now, there has been a rising tide of unease on our shores. Our relations with the United Federation of Planets and the Klingon Empire have been defined by conventions entered into by a previous government and upheld by each of its successors, including my government. Despite declaring our desire for perpetual neutrality time and time again, there are many on our planet and in our neighboring space who wonder, anguish, and weep about the future of our great society. Today, at the frontiers of our space, and indeed on our own metropolitan soil, a war has begun. Our neutrality has been violated, and we are no longer in the position to respond with inaction. Ypartin leaned forward, reasoning that his slight change of position would better communicate the compassion in his voice. Despite his young age, he must present himself as a fatherly figure, a protector of his people. An image of softness was necessary to project, but only just. Ypartin: I know how you must feel. Some of you will undoubtedly feel betrayed, both by the aliens who have violated our borders, but also by your government for failing to repel them. Others of you may be feeling abandoned, especially those living in our regions, where alien occupying forces have arrived and are certainly causing chaos. Some of you must be wondering where your duty lies, now that our neutrality has been taken from us. ::long pause:: And, as much as it pains me to say this, a small number of you are seeking to exploit this tragedy for your own interest. The Da’al were a principled people, and if Ypartin could not appeal to their patriotism, at least he could appeal to their guilt and suspicion of their neighbors. Ypartin: We must take this opportunity, my dear people of Da’al, to overcome a legacy of distrust and introversion, which was the product of previous governments’ disunity and self-interest. We must recognize that we live in a space dominated by two superpowers; one of which can, and must, protect us from the other. As your first citizen and head of your government, I know how difficult of a task this is, and it will require both labour and patience from each of us. Ypartin: I will not lie. There will be suffering. But I do not wish that our people’s suffering should be for naught. I think of our farmers and our labourers who, despite difficult harvests and difficult working conditions, will supply our people, and our protecting powers, with that which we all need to survive. It is thanks to all of you, and your efforts, that we will maintain a life nearly indistinguishable from that we knew. We are no longer neutral, but we are not defeated. Our great Da’al society will continue. The Da’al of tomorrow will be more powerful and more prosperous, this I promise you. Ypartin: I am sure many of you youths will join me in quoting the guiding principle of our constitution: “Divisions within our society should be reflected in proportion to their number.” This is how I have governed for the past five years, in consultation with all of the broad factions that constitute our society. My dear people, it breaks my heart to tell you this: In light of the invasion by hostile aliens, Da’al can no longer be effectively governed from the regions, and Da’al can no longer be governed effectively by the lengthy process coalition building, which has defined our politics for centuries. What Da’al needs now is unity, to speak and act as one people, one society. With one voice. Ypartin: Da’al cannot wait. Our people, as ready for sacrifice when its honour is at stake, need certainty, space, and discipline. I shall provide this on your behalf. Until further notice, authority no longer emanates from below. The only authority is that which I entrust or delegate. This is what I have decided: Looking down at his list of bullet points, Ypartin drew a slow breath. Ypartin: One; Activity of factions and factional leadership is suspended until further notice, including meetings and distribution of notices. Factions that fail to comply will be disestablished. Two; the Great Council is hereby dissolved, and in its place, a Council of State shall be created. This Council will determine how best our society will adapt to our new circumstances and seek out and destroy obstacles which abuse the efficient functioning of government, The Council of State will issue guidances which shall carry the force of law. Three; the powers of Regional prefects and assemblies, and colonial bodies, shall be given over to the Council of State. His mouth suddenly dry, Ypartin eyed the glass of water nearby. He increased the pace of his speech, making the glass of water another reward for its successful completion. Ypartin: These measures will assure those Da’al who think only of the well-being of our people. As your prime minister, and your protector, I know what victory is, and I know what defeat is. I have taken on the responsibility of stewarding a wounded and attacked planet, and it is my duty to maintain our great society at all costs. When a man of my young years dedicates himself to his people, there is no sacrifice he can refuse. His only concern… my only concern, is the future of Da’al. If beaten people divide, they die. If beaten people unite, they are reborn. Da’al will be reborn. ((OOC: TL;DL, self-coup. I was careful not to name either side as the threat or the saviour. This was intentional. I suppose we’ll find out who is who, at least in Ypartin’s scheming mind.)) TBC MSPNPC Ypartin Da’al prime minister simmed by Ensign Yogan Yalu Helm Officer USS Resolution NCC-78145 Justin D238804DS0 @Yalu
  5. Congrats, grads! Excited to have you on the Resolution!!
  6. I am humbled by the presentation and by those who chose to nominate me for the award. A hearty congrats to all the other winners - they are all much deserved!!
  7. Sincere and heartfelt congrats to you all, and many thanks for building/maintaining such a great community. Proud to be a part of it!
  8. Congrats to all winners, especially those who have helped make my time here so special - @Roshanara Rahman, @Geoffrey Teller, @Jo Marshall, @Blake, and @Alieth!
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