Antican Antics Reporting In
Sojourners of Time
Location: Pathfinder Station
Timeline: Mission Day 1 at 1500
A week long shuttle trip was not a horrible experience for most people. However, Maga was not most people. She was the only Antican in Starfleet. The week long trip was, in of itself, not a problem. Maga had taken week long shuttle trips in her past. The difficulties were associated with her instructions. Other than being permitted to sleep, she was instructed to stay, "On Duty," until her new commanding officer told her otherwise.
Being "on duty" for an entire week on a shuttlecraft was not easy. She knew that her superiors had issued that order so she would not get distracted or cause difficulties during the transport to Pathfinder Station. However, sleep was difficult to accomplish when the fusion reactors were making a high pitched whine. Why nobody else could hear it, she did not know. She also was perturbed that nobody would allow her to take a look at it. Maga was convinced that there was a slight variance in the EPS conduits, but according to staff, everything was operating within normal specifications.
So, when the trip had finally ended, Maga's eyes were bloodshot and her steps were slow and purposeful. Immediately, she headed to a computer panel and asked, "Where is the USS Sojourner?" Obediently, the computer's cheery female voice gave her the dock. Dragging her tired carcass to the dock, she looked for someone that could tell her with whom and where she should report.
A yeomen with a PADD bustled past the Antican, brushing her accidentally as she did. "Sorry," she said, offering the other officer a nod and a smile before pausing. "Are you looking for someone?" she asked.
I'm "on duty." I'm "on duty." I'm "on duty." Maga reminded herself irritably. Her gaunt eyes bored into the yeoman. "I am the new Assistant Chief Engineer on Sojourner. I need to be directed to whomever I need to report and then get better sleep than I have had in the last week. The whining from the fusion reactors...." She stopped herself from continuing on a rant. "Just instructions."
A quick tilt of the head from the yeoman was the only indicator that her reaction was anything less than placid. "Probably Commander t'Nai. You'll find her on the Bridge," the yeoman offered with a smile and a nod in the direction of the umbilical that connected the ship to the dock.
"Very well." Maga responded with a low growl. She did not wait for a response or exchange and took the most direct route to the bridge. She half debated getting down on all fours to get there more quickly. A quick run might improve her disposition but not being upright might cause someone to trip over her. Again, she was "on duty," so she needed to behave appropriately.
A quick turbolift ride to the bridge later, Maga arrived. She looked around and announced to all concerned in a tired voice, "I am Lieutenant Margarar. I am looking for Commander t'Nai. I am to report to her as the new Assistant Chief Engineer."
The wave of exhaustion that preceded the Lieutenant into the Bridge caught Emni off guard. She'd known they would be getting a new Assistant Chief Engineer just as she'd learned that Lieutenant Oliveria had been temporarily reassigned to Pathfinder Station to assist with work that his particular brand of expertise qualified him for. The new officer, then, was not so much going to be the Assistant Chief as the Acting Chief until Nico's return.
She turned quickly at the sound of a tired voice and stood, nodding to the Antican and offering a kind smile. "Welcome, Lieutenant," she said with some warmth.
"Then you are Commander t'Nai?" Maga asked, standing rigidly straight at attention. "Lieutenant Margarar reporting for duty, Ma'am."
"I am," the Romulan acknowledged, "At ease, Lieutenant." She turned, nodding to the officer at the Conn. "You've got the bridge, Lieutenant."
Moving toward the new arrival she offered the woman a kind smile. "Let me show you to your quarters," she said. "We can talk on the way and then you can take a minute to settle in."
"As you wish, Commander," Margarar responded. The Antican tried to sound cheerful, but her bloodshot eyes gave away her exhaustion. She sniffed the air around Emni and wondered at her scent. She was not Vulcan or Human.... Maybe somewhat human. There was a mystery to be solved and her head tilted toward the Commander with wonder. "What is it that you would like to talk about, Commander?" Margarar asked as she entered the turbolift, knowing that entering it would be the first step to the Commander showing the way to Margarar's quarters.
Emni offered the other woman a smile as she followed her into the lift. "Deck 4," she advised as the lift kicked into motion.
"We have had a range of shifting positions lately and part of that involves the temporary reassignment of our Chief Engineer to Pathfinder Station," she said, straight to the point. "I realize you are here as Assistant Chief, but starting now you are Acting Chief until Mr. Oliveria is returned to us."
She waited a moment, the exhaustion of the woman next to her overwhelming much her emotional signature although an undercurrent of curiosity couldn't be ignored.
The Antican's jaw dropped open. She turned to the Commander and remembering that she was "on duty," tried to recalibrate her brain to take in this information and respond in an appropriate manner. After a solid few seconds passed, Margarar asked, "Do you know that this is my first Assistant Chief position, Commander?" Courageously, she masked the trepidation in her voice but her legs felt like gelatin and their support was wavering, whether because of her exhaustion, the shock, or some combination thereof.
"I do," Emni remarked with a small chuckle. "And it is my first posting as an XO, and Dr. Ryan Walsh's first as CMO and Mr. Mothim-Ril's first as Chief Scientist and ... I could go on. The point is that we have our fair share of first time position holders here. We learn the things we need together and get through. I am sure you'll find the crew quite supportive."
The crew was her pack. And now, somehow, she was the temporary leader of it. That was not right. How was she supposed to do all of the things she was told to do? And she knew that she was hardly knowledgeable in several areas of engineering. Anything abstract was usually beyond her scope. And she had never been an Assistant Chief, let alone Chief of Engineering. She had hoped someone would teach her how to do all the things that were now expected of her. Did she get a yeoman to help? There were too many unknowns. She needed to find some footing. Something that kept her grounded. "But you will be my immediate superior officer, then." She paused before uncertainly continuing, "At least until the actual Chief returns, right?"
The younger woman's uncertainty flowed through Emni like a torrent and she quickly erected some low level mental barriers so she could be sure her responses were measured. "I will be, yes," she replied. "And you will find our engineers are well adapted as a team. I realize it seems like a lot, but Starfleet asks much of us at times and we decide how we respond. You wouldn't have been assigned to us if Starfleet didn't think you could handle what the Delta Quadrant might throw at us."
The turbolift came to a halt and Emni stepped out pausing to make sure Margarar followed. "I realize this is a lot to take in and it's evident that you've had an exhausting journey. I'd like you to get settled and rest and then we can discuss this further." She paused, hesitating slightly in her speech. "Once you are through the doors of your quarters, Lieutenant, you are off duty. Do you understand?"
Relieved to hear the words "off duty," Margarar wearily answered, "I do. When will I be required to be back on duty? I am grateful that the ship is in dock. The fusion reactors on the transport were not properly aligned on the shuttle here. I was not permitted to check out the EPS conduits because I was informed everything was within normal limits. I suspect the limited hearing ranges of Terrans may be part of the issue."
Having followed the Commander, she arrived at the door to her quarters. She concentrated her efforts on the Commander. There was something different about her. Whatever it was, Margarar was not able to tell at this moment, due to her exhaustion. At least she was not some young whipper snapper.
"How long would be helpful?" Emni asked. "We have some time and so our duty rotations are light right now. "Could you be ready to report at 0800 tomorrow?"
"I can be ready whenever I am required," the Antican replied obediently. "However, that should be sufficient time for me to recuperate from the trip here."
Emni nodded, offering another small encouraging smile. The relief of the other woman was nearly as palpable as the exhaustion. "Then 0800 tomorrow. My quarters double as my office, so you can meet me there and we'll get you introduced to your team."
"Thank you, Commander. I will be there then." With that Maga entered her quarters. She did not even make it to the bed before collapsing onto the ground and falling into a deep sleep.