Flights Of Fancy
Location: CO's Ready Room Deck 1
Timeline: MD2 0730
The short woman that was Chloe Waters had just come on board the Kitsune. So far, she had to admit that the ship was... small, not like her previous assignment at all. As she rode the turbolift to the bridge so she could meet her new CO, apparently the man who had requested her transfer, one thing weighed on her mind. 'Why?'
The lift slowed, its ambient hum getting quieter, lowered pitched as Chloe felt the change in velocity deep inside her. She stole herself for the moment when the doors would open. The moment when she would turn heads. The moment when everyone would look to see who this short, unfamiliar woman was.
The doors hissed open, and the bridge was... surprisingly empty. Chloe paused, staring for just a moment. There were one or two people, of course... but it was otherwise quiet. She huffed quietly and stepped out of the cramped car, making her way across the bridge with quiet steps. Then, holding her breath, Chloe rang the chime.
There was a brief pause before an Age roughened voice Answered through the chime. "Enter."
Chloe nodded and stepped into the door sensor's detection field. It took no noticeable amount of time for them to open and when they did, she poked her head in first, looking around. The ready room was small... so it seemed, just like most of this ship. She quietly, slowly stepped inside.
The doors hissed closed behind Chloe and she looked around, trying to suppress the unease she felt in this moment, seemingly so far out of her element. Finally she looked up, and without moving her mouth, she spoke. "Lieutenant Waters, reporting as ordered."
The voice of Chloe's translator was completely dull, monotonic in nature. She held her breath and waited for what she felt was the inevitable questions. She knew they would come, they always did. Curiosity always seemed to override everything else.
The Ready room was Spartan, With a faint Twinge of red from the lighting, Lacking Furniture or decoration besides the bolted down Commanders desk and Two chairs on either side of it. Seated on the opposite side a Short Stone faced human slowly looked up from the Screen imbeded in the desk. "Come in Lieutenant," He said calmly, his voice thickly accented With a nearly latin twinge. "Have a seat," he gestured to the Lighlty Padded chair across from him.
While certainly not the most Intimidating Specimen of Humanity, Micheal "Mikey" Clearwater had an a soft Regal look about him that couldn't quite be placed. "I can't tell you how Glad I am to have a Fellow martian aboard, Help's me keep a firm Rust planet Grip on the crew if you catch my drift," he chuckled Kindly.
Chloe nodded slowly, softly as she stepped towards the offered chair with soft, light steps, watching her new CO as she went. She felt at somewhat of a loss for words as she slowly lowered herself into her chair, feeling surprised, and confused. Chloe's gaze wandered around the room for a moment before nodding again at Commander Clearwater's statement.
Then, Chloe huffed softly, looking up at the taller officer. Her translator came to life once again without her lips moving as she asked, "Permission to speak freely, sir?"
"I Encourage it," He said calmly as he sat back his Gaze still darting over her.
Chloe took a deep breath, not really necessary since she didn't have to use her oxygen supply in speaking. Rather, it was more to brace herself to ask the question that was on her mind. With a confused, somewhat uncertain expression, Chloe thought to have her translator pose the question, feeling the uncertainty in her heart. "Why am I here? I do not generally consider myself the type of officer for the second officer position."
"Your Here because I Chose you for this mission," he said calmly, his gaze narrowing slightly. "I Didn't have Many choices with my Crew for this mission, but You stood out among the Candidates I had Available." he said softly. "Your Records From the USS Earhart Were nothing but positive, And your driven Performance in the Academy Made Me See Potential in you above Many other candidates."
He leaned forward the Chair Creaking slightly. "And to be honest, I'd Prefer to have someone who can think outside the box in my command chain," he smiled softly. "We are a Research and Development Ship after all."
Chloe considered her reply. In some ways, thinking outside of the box was easier for her, partly because she wasn't like anyone else around her. And yet... that was the part of her that she hated the most. It made her feel... different, like an outsider. She considered those words for a moment before nodding slowly. "Being outside of the box itself... is of some assistance to me in this regard, sir," her translator drones. And each time Chloe finds herself speaking, simply out of habit she finds her gaze lowering to avoid any wandering eyes, to not see the curiosity on people's faces. That habit remains with her to this day, so much so that she isn't even aware of it anymore.
"Tell me, Lieutenant Waters, What part of Mars are you from?" He asked softly his face a nearly Unreadable mask.
Chloe blinked once, surprised. She had been expecting, obviously, a question about her translator. Not... casual conversation. She seemed to mull her response over for a moment. Being the private person Chloe Waters was, it was ideal for her to reveal as little about herself as possible. However, she was no longer a junior officer.
After a moment, Chloe finally responded. "New Tokyo, sir."
"I traveled there a few times in my youth," He said musing quietly he stared at her. "I Grew up on Olympus Shield Plains," He nodded. "A simple Rock Farm, down by Mariner valley," he smiled.
Chloe continued to listen, feeling her CO's eyes on her. She wasn't certain why, but this whole situation made her feel like a piece of meat, being studied, tested to see if it was ready for consumption. Chloe forced those thoughts out of her head as she nodded, her translator saying vaguely, "Nice place."
Mikey Let out a booming laugh his eyes squeezing shut. "Mariner Valley is the opposite of Nice," he chuckled kindly.
'Damn it. I'm caught,' was the first thought in her head. A thought, thankfully, she was able to suppress. She shrugged slightly and raised a hand, as if in surrender while watching Commander Clearwater for a reaction.
"Relax Lieutenant," he smiled. "I'm not as much of a hard ass As my Rough exterior might lead someone to believe," he smirked. "Though...I do have to ask...why you accepted these orders."
Chloe looked confused, and surprised at the question, though... she really shouldn't have been. Why did she accept them? Honestly, she wasn't certain. Six years on the Earhart got her nowhere. She was still the same Chloe she had been when she was born. But she wondered why her CO was wondering about this. "Explain?" Chloe asked, hoping that for one, it would buy her some time, and two it might help Chloe understand where her supperior was coming from.
"You asked my why I Requested you above other candidates," he shrugged his hands Gesturing to the desk. "I want to know why you Accepted the orders, What do you hope to Achive here on the Kitsune."
Chloe ducked her head briefly. Now she knew why, and she didn't know how to feel about her reasoning. She exhaled slowly as she looked up, trying to keep a myriad of emotions off her face. She hesitated a moment before lifting a hand to her lips and moving her mouth seemingly randomly, as if immitating speaking. Then she closed it, and her translator came to life while Chloe rested a finger on her upper lip. "So I can end this... torture," she said finally.
Chloe ducked her head again slightly. "I will spare you the... sob story. Sufficed to say, my life has been a living hell. I wish to be normal, to find what I must to end..." Chloe tapped her lip. "This. The Earhart was going nowhere."
At this moment, Chloe felt an indescribable, deep sadness. It was as if the air changed around her to reflect her new mood, her renewed desperation to find what she was looking for. Chloe gave a soft huff.
The man nodded slowly. "I can't say I have Much experience with Medicine," he said softly as he leaned back in his chair. "I Entered Star Fleet As an Engineer...but," he leaned forward a serious look on his face. "if there ever was a ship to give you an advantage towards finding A solution," he gestured to the bulkheads around them. "It would be this one."
Chloe gave a simple, slow nod as her gaze followed her superior's gesturing hand around the room. It struck her again how... small, things felt as she replied. "Precisely."
Mikey smiled gently. "I trust you were briefed about her heart?" he asked as he folded his arms on the desk.
Chloe blinked slowly for a moment, then she understood what she was being asked. The lack of a warp core. The use of an artificial singularity in its place. It was... odd, relying on Romulan based technology for a Federation starship. Still, she was certain she could get used to it. Chloe nodded her head in affirmation. "I was, yes sir. This should make things... intriguing."
"Hopefully not," he shook his head. "Hard to say though, with our understanding of Imperial Romulan tech," He shrugged. "Still you have my utmost confidence In handling the ships flight capabilities," he said perking up a boyish grin crossing his Mars roughened face. "Do you have any other questions?" he asked.
Chloe considered her new CO's words carefully. She was a good pilot, a damned good one, and she knew it. Her abilities at the con were the only certainty in her life. Piloting was the only thing she knew she was good at. But did she have any questions? No... she didn't think so. None that she was aware of, at any rate. Chloe knew about the testbed nature of the Kitsune, but she didn't realize just how deeply that nature ran.
"I have no questions, sir," Chloe's translator droned in a dull tone, as she folded her arms casually across her chest.
"Fair enough Lieutenant," Mikey nodded slowly. "One last thing before Your dismissed," he added. "Our upcoming mission brief you missed, so I'll provide you with one here." he Smiled some. "We'll be Undertaking A patrol and Recon mission along the Tzenchethi border," He smiled wide. "And Showing off our tech."