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Back To Work

Posted on 12 Aug 2019 @ 3:06pm by Lieutenant JG Damian Akorem & Captain Harvey Geisler

Mission: Truth and Justice
Location: USS Black Hawk; Ready Room
Timeline: MD 4 || 1000 hours

Damian stood on the bridge, in front of the Captain's ready room. He had not been on a Century Class ship before, but he recognised the bridge from the Sovereign class. Not exactly the same, but it still had a familiar quality. He had briefly been on the USS Directorate, which had been assigned to the Academy temporarily for a training cruise. He tapped the door chime and waited for the Captain to let him in.

Captain Geisler was just exiting the head after a personal moment when the chime sounded. His mind quickly reviewed the day's timetable, recalling that he had an appointment about this time, but he couldn't quite remember who. "Come in," he said as he sat down at his cluttered desk and tried to tidy it up a bit.

The door opened, and he walked in and saw the Captain moving some stuff around on his desk. He was not in a uniform, as he was still technically on inactive duty. "Captain, Lieutenant Junior Grade Akorem, I was one of the officers rescued from Finnea. I was on the Vasco da Gama."

"Ah, yes." Captain Geisler's memory, having been refreshed, quickly replayed the necessary information in head. "Our coma patient whom we couldn't leave on Deep Space 15 with its poor facilities and that Doctor Kij insisted that we take care of in the event you couldn't make it anywhere else. I must admit, Lieutenant, you're one hell of a fighter to have made it through all of our unfortunate nature in your state."

"That's probably from my mother. I was born on Valo III, and growing up there wasn't easy. She gave me and my father as much as she could, and worked so hard for it." He paused for a moment, reflecting on his childhood. "I mean even after Starfleet turned up, it still wasn't easy for a while."

"Valo..." Harvey muttered, trying to place the name he only vaguely recalled. "Was that one of the planets in the former Cardassian Demilitarized Zone?"

Damian nodded. "Yes, the very same. There were a few other colonies, but Valo became one of the bigger ones. Plus with it being on the fringe, Starfleet was permitted to bring in relief convoys, and the ship to remain in orbit was the USS Fredrickson, my father's ship.

Harvey raised an eyebrow. "So, you're only half-Bajoran then?" he asked. Harvey wasn't aware of any Bajorans serving in Starfleet that early on as Bajor really only came to prominence in the early 2370's.

Damian nodded. "My mother is Bajoran, my father Human. But apparently, Bajoran DNA is more dominant, so the ridges are fully formed." He reached up and ran a finger down the ridges of his nose, almost without thinking about it. "My father fell for my mother while he was based on Valo. He was in charge of the Starfleet contingent on the surface."

The Captain nodded in return. It was common for Starfleet officers to fall in love with locals throughout the galaxy, and much more common to find romantic interests with those they served with for extended periods of time. "What brought you to Starfleet then?" Harvey asked. "And not back to Bajor?"

"I was born on a refugee planet. As much as my Bajoran heritage means to me, I have only ever known Valo. I'd seen enough holorecordings on the damage left by the Cardassians. The occupation was long over by the time I was old enough to join Starfleet, but I didn't want to go back until Bajor looked as beautiful as it once was."

"I can understand that," Harvey said, gesturing to the Bajoran to sit down. "I spent much of my early career around Betazed. Beautiful planet, and it took some time for Betazed to recover from what the Dominion did to her during the war. And, yes, I was there when it all happened."

"I was 11 when the Dominion landed on Betazed. I was on Earth with my grandpa. Me and my father left Valo just after the Non-Aggression pact was signed between the Dominion and Bajor. Mother stayed behind to help look after some of the Bajoran families. And because he was still active duty Starfleet, I stayed on Earth."

"And wound up in Starfleet because of it," Harvey inferred, gesturing to the half-Bajoran's uniform. "Do you ever get back to Valo at all?"

"Not as often as I would like. But my mother still lives there, and my father and I usually try and arrange shore leave around the same time, so we can all get back to Valo for a nice family holiday."

"Well, I hate to tell you, Mister Akorem," Harvey began with a sigh. "You're not going to be able to go home anytime soon. I know you've been comatose for a while, but do you have any idea where you currently are?"

Akorem suddenly felt himself tense up. "Yes, Sir. Inside the Finnean Convergence Zone. Having been on the Vasco da Gama, we had studied the zone, and tried to send probes in for months. I did some reading, but most of it is above my paygrade, so I'm still not quite sure how the Black Hawk managed it. It's fascinating, but slightly worrying if I am honest."

"Just you wait until we try to get out," Harvey remarked, leaving that a second later to be a rhetorical statement. "Throughout our journey, our Engineering and Operations departments have been hit extremely hard. Replacements are in short supply, so I hope you don't mind being drafted into some heavy bridge duty for the duration of our tour."

"Of course not!" He suddenly felt a sense of purpose. He had only been awake for the better part of a day, but being here, cut off from home, he did feel lost. "I'm more than willing Captain. When would you like me to join the duty roster?"

"How's now?" Harvey asked. "Again, I know you're just coming off a coma and everything else, but I can certainly use all the help I can get around here."

"Now is good, though..." He remembered the Doctors advice about taking it easy. "I do need to try to take it easy. The Doc says I still have a ways to go to be back to 100%. Now is good, but extra downtime might keep the Doctor happy." Not me though, I would much rather be working full time again he thought to himself.

The Captain nodded, considering the Doctor to be wise in her judgment. He, of course, had been there once before so he understood. "Then I recommend taking the day to get yourself acquainted with the bridge, the ship, and possibly even the department. I'll let the XO know you're cleared for light duty for now, and we'll work you into full rotation in the coming week."

"Thank you, Captain. I'll do some reading up today then. I haven't worked on a Century class before, so it will be fun to get too." He replied with enthusiasm.

"She's top of the line," Harvey declared with a prideful smile. No matter how much he enjoyed this ship, he still had a soft spot for his fallen Akira. Perhaps he should have a model constructed and placed on his desk as a tribute to the old girl. "She's seen better days, but she hasn't let us down yet."

"Well, I look forward to working here Sir." He sat slightly more professional than he had been, then realising the reason why he was slightly slouching was the ache in the muscles at the base of his spine. He winced slightly.

Harvey took note of the wince, but chose not to acknowledge it. Instead, he rose from his chair to extend a hand to formally conclude the meeting. "Welcome aboard, Mister Akorem."

Damian stood, albeit slightly slower than he would have liked, and extended his hand. "Thank you, Captain Geisler. I hope I fit in here as I did on the Vasco da Gama."

 

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