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JP: Lt Valdivia/LtCmdr Traenor, "Handing Over The Reins"


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((Chief Science Officer’s Office, Deck 2 - USS Darwin-A))

::Having already packed up the lion’s share of his personal effects and assorted tchotchkes, Maxwell Traenor was taking one last sweep of the office before he handed over the reins to John Valdivia. A close colleague and a good friend, Maxwell was more than pleased for John to be inheriting the role of CSO in his absence. Still, it was a bittersweet feeling to be vacating the office. Not because of the locale, per se, but more because of what it represented. The entirety of his adult life had been spent as a scientist. First as a civilian, then as an enlisted man, and now the pinnacle as the head of a Federation science ship’s science department.::

Traenor: oO I had always defined myself as a scientist first and foremost. This officer deal is a new phenomenon for me. Once I drop the scientist moniker, will I still be as satisfied? Will changing tack now, with a new priority as officer first and role second, still be as fulfilling? Oo

Valdivia: Hey, I see you are already leaving.

::Maxwell had heard the door open, but had been too caught up in reminiscent thoughts to turn around. Still, when John spoke up, he turned with a warm smile.::

Traenor: Oh, hey, John. Sorry about that, I was just wrapped up in my own little world. ::throwing his arms out wide:: So, what do you think of your new digs?

:: Not wanting to interrupt his friend’s work of recovering everything that was his, Valdivia sat on a chair, just chatting while the older scientist moved around. Still, he had the deference to sit on one of the visitor’s chairs. Until he physically left with everything, the two of them would treat the office as Maxwell’s. ::

Valdivia: Well, in general being Chief means a lot of paperwork and less time to work on your own personal projects. But on the other hand, the Darwin has amazing scientific facilities. Getting to chose what to do with them is a bit exciting, yes.

:: He turned around with the spinning chair to look at the now empty office and finally faced Traenor again. ::

Valdivia: oO First on the list of requisitions: two whiteboards for my office. Oo

Traenor: ::pointing at a small box left on the desk:: That’s the last of my stuff there. If I’ve forgotten anything, then it’ll just give me a good excuse to come down and visit.

Valdivia: Well, you are welcome to come down whenever you want. And I’ll get you a lab if you ever want to run your own experiments.

:: Valdivia tried to affect a noncommittal tone, but he had been in the same position, and knew it was harder than one would imagine. Leaving the science department it was not only a job change, it meant your objectives as an officer had just changed. Still, seeing how organized Traenor had managed to keep a normally messy science department, he knew he would be a great asset to Ops. He just wondered if Ops would be so great for Traenor. ::

Traenor: That would be nice. I don’t know how often I’ll be able to come down and putter around the labs, but it’s not something I totally want to give up in my life, either. ::with a sigh:: I know this is part and parcel of being in Starfleet, but changing roles is a big thing. I’m left wondering how different it’s going to be. Not to be called ‘scientist’ any longer...

Valdivia: At the end of the day, not that many people call you ‘scientist’. For me the hardest part was dressing myself each morning and noticing my uniform was the wrong color. But you get used to it.

Traenor: ::with a chuckle:: Good point. I should have gotten myself a title, like you, ‘Doctor’. And as for uniform color? Already got that out of my system. Red looked good on me. But gold? That remains to be seen.

:: That was true, the last mission had already seen Traenor in red as acting First Officer. What was another change, anyway. ::

Traenor: Though these types of radical change must be second nature for you by now. I mean, you left Starfleet for the civilian world, then came back in at the bottom.

Valdivia: I had been involved in the Mainardi project since the beginning. I just had to be there. Some regulations forced me to leave Starfleet for that… but in the end, being stuck in a planet might get boring.

::It was hard for Maxwell to imagine John not on a starship, manning Astrometrics or the bridge with equal aplomb. The man had a solid presence about him, of familiarity and comfort, that exuded professionalism. It had been an utter pleasure to work closely with him, and had made his transition as a new Chief during the Darwin’s relaunch so much easier.::

Traenor: oO It’s not like you won’t be working with him anymore, or will never see him. Stop pining like you’re leaving the ship! Oo I agree. The opportunities out here on a ship such as the Darwin are just too good to pass up. Like studying the Prometheus rifts, right?

Valdivia: That in particular I wouldn’t have minded watching from a distance.

:: That wasn’t completely true. Now that all had ended well, Valdivia loved to have been able to see it first hand. But his first encounter crashed the Victory, and his second encounter phased him away. Surprisingly, this had been the least dangerous of them. ::

Traenor: Mind you, now that we’ve seen them twice, I can do without seeing them ever again. ::chuckle:: But still, a science ship is a great place to be a scientist. Enjoy it while it lasts, and all that sappy stuff.

::Clearing his throat, and annoyed at himself for being so sentimental over the change, it was time for them to start talking about the actual logistics of handing over the departmental reins. The older scientist palmed up the wall display, which had a rough schematic of the ship’s labs and were color coded. Labels on the side had various officer names. Honestly, trying to accommodate lab space requests was one of the hardest parts of the role, and placating eager scientists was akin to herding cats in simplicity.::

Valdivia: :: friendly stopping the cascade of instructions:: I have been Chief of Science before, remember? I’ll get over it. I want to know the specifics of the Darwin. Anything in particular I should do about the Sphere?

Traenor: ::smiling:: Of course, my friend. I’m being foolish. The Sphere requires a lot of coordination with Engineering, and coincidentally Ops, when in use. So many field generators! But otherwise, the sky’s the limit. We haven’t really tested it yet, but I’m sure when we do, it’ll do great!

Valdivia: Engineering and Ops. Got it. And any talents I should know about in the labs? I’m sure we have some brilliant minds, but any scientists in particular whose results I should keep track of?

Traenor: I’ve got all that noted down in the PADDs I’ve left for you, and logged in the computer. I’ll let you peruse those at your pleasure. Personality wise, there’s no discipline issues, but watch out for a couple. There’s Crewman Bri Tiralta, who has shown to be… antisocial. And Doctor Patelli, she can be a handful as well.

:: Although struggling against it, as they talked the older officer had been slowly walking towards the doors. The two of them knew the moment he crossed the doors would be definitive, Valdivia would be Chief of Science, and Traenor would be Chief of Operations. They already were, if you asked the computer, but in their minds that was the great moment. Their conversation died out, and before Traenor sadly stepped outside, Valdivia frantically looked for a new subject. ::

Valdivia: So, this stack of PADDs here. I’m assuming that’s the technical data I have to check, reports, etc.

Traenor: ::with a smirk:: Yes, and a few of the more interesting problems you’ll need to face. Have a read, when you’re sitting down.

:: Valdivia grabbed the PADDs and looked at them. ::

Valdivia: Sphere protocols, current running experiments, crew projects…

:: At this point something drew his attention to a particular project. He would have sworn he had seen the world ‘disco’ somewhere, although now he could only see an abstract talking about lighting up the Darwin sphere. ::

Valdivia: Wait, Doctor Patelli wanted to what?

:: Looking up, he could just see the doors closing behind Traenor, leaving him to his own new responsibilities. ::


Lieutenant John Valdivia - Science Officer - USS Darwin NCC-99312-A
Department of Veteran Affairs
LtCmdr Maxwell Traenor - Chief HCO Officer, USS Darwin NCC-99312-A
Graphic Contest Taskforce =/\= Characters Guild Co-Facilitator
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