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Not Just Droning On

Posted on 13 Jan 2020 @ 5:01pm by Lieutenant Commander Camila Di Pasquale & Senior Chief Petty Officer Mila Rasputin & Captain Harvey Geisler

Mission: Epilogue
Location: Ready Room
Timeline: June 15, 2389 || 1400 hours

Once Mila had the PADD with the information on it that Chief Di Pasquale had given her, she headed for the bridge to locate the Captain. She stepped off the turbolift onto the bridge and looked around; not seeing the Captain, she headed for the ready room and pressed the chime.

The doors parted before the Senior Chief, revealing Harvey sitting at his table, working his way through a cobb salad. He looked up to see Mila at the door. "Mila," he greeted before taking another bite.

"Captain," she said with a smile and hint of her accent. When she saw he was eating, she raised a hand. "Nyet. Do not stop. I will be coming back, Sir."

“Nonsense,” Harvey quickly said. He saw her carrying a PADD, and this wasn’t her usual time for coming, so this meant something serious was afoot. “Come on in.”

Mila moved over and took a seat, but fidgeted with the PADD. "You are knowing I am not liking to interrupt you when you are eating," she said.

Harvey finished another bite as he set down his fork. “I don’t like it either, but life hasn’t been anything near conventional for the last six months, not to mention I’ve gotten good at eating quickly thanks to the twins. What do you have there?”

"A PADD from Lieutenant Di Pasquale," Mile answered, but made no move to hand it to him. "It will be here when you are done. Will not cry and demand to be changed."

“Be where?” Harvey joked, picking up his fork to stab another bite of salad. “Standing in the doorway until I finish?”

"Nyet," the Russian laughed. "PADD will be here. If PADD is standing in doorway, something is being more wrong than usual."

Harvey chuckled, glad to see a glimpse of what was once normal life and demeanor in his crew. “It’s good to hear you laugh, Mila.”

"Is not easy at times, Harvey," she said quietly. "Especially when I am seeing Joey. She is not knowing that I am being one that killed Torg."

He slowly chewed the bite he placed in his mouth the moment she made her confession. Harvey could tell her that it wasn’t her fault, that she was acting in self defense. Had she not resisted, she would have become one of them, and who knew what damage a possessed Mila could have wrought. “Why haven’t you told her?”

"I am being scared it will hurt our friendship," Mila admitted. "I did not want to be doing it, but he kept coming. I tried to stop him but...wire had very high voltage and I was not knowing which was which."

“She’s former security,” Harvey pointed out. “And no stranger to difficult decisions. I think you’ll find her more understanding than you can imagine.”

"Torg was being her friend," the Yeoman countered. "Whose life I took."

“We all lost friends, Mila,” he said in a reassuring tone. He hadn’t known many of the crew who’d lost their lives, save for a Charles Carmichael, one of his first science officers. With him gone, the Black Hawk now only carried twenty two of the original crew who served with him the moment he took command of the Akira class vessel. Soon, it would be none. He finished his salad and pushed the plate away. “All right, lunch is done. What’ve you brought for me?”

Mila handed over the PADD. "I am not knowing," she admitted. "It is requiring your authorization only."

Harvey keyed in his authorization code and the device was instantly unlocked, delivering a clean presentation of statistics and schematics for a set of security drones. “Looks like Lieutenant Di Pasquale has one of her projects ready at last. Did she indicate any further plans for the day?”

"She merely asked me to make certain that you are personally getting this," his Yeoman said.

The Captain nodded, looking down to start sifting through the information. “Looks like I’ve got some reading to do. Can you have Miss Di Pasquale arrange a demonstration in an hour?”

"Da," Mila said. She looked like she wanted to say something else, but she shook her head and started to get up.

Harvey was no Betazoid, but he was experienced enough with those close to him to know when something was amiss. “Something on your mind, Mila?”

"I am not having proof, but I am thinking you should be keeping close eye on her, Sir," Mila said. "She is possibly having repeat of Deep Space Eleven. I have seen all her reports. She is pushing beyond reasonable limits."

He had no choice but to concur. After all, it seemed like only yesterday Camila was yelling at him and throwing coffee mugs in the Ready Room. “She needs a win. Several wins. But duly noted.”

"Then I will arrange for demonstration with her," Mila said as she stood. "One other suggestion I am making, but is not my place. Perhaps make random checks for alcohol among crew. Mission has been harder on some."

"I'll be sure to add that to Security's purview," Harvey remarked, his face glancing back downward to the padd. "Unless that's something I should have you head up."

Mila laughed. "Unless you are promoting me, I am not being that qualified to do, Harvey," she said.

Harvey chuckled, glancing up once more at the Russian woman. “Fair enough. Make sure Miss Di Pasquale is ready in an hour.”

"Da, will be done," the Yeoman said before she turned and headed out.

Almost one hour later to the minute, the Captain's combadge chirped. =^=Lieutenant Di Pasquale to Captain Geisler.=^=

Harvey, who had finished reading the report several minutes ago and had relocated to the bridge, tapped his badge and replied, "Geisler here. Are you ready for your demonstration?"

=^=Affirmative, Captain=^=

Captain Geisler rose from his chair and turned command of the unmovable starship to a Petty Officer. "Where shall I meet you?" he asked as he stepped into a turbolift.

=^=I'm at the phaser range, Sir.=^= Di Pasquale's voice responded.

A few minutes later, Harvey found himself on Deck Twelve, heading for the security complex in the fortified section. He wasn't surprised to see that even though major repairs to the ship hadn't yet begun, several sections of corridor had been opened and gutted, as if the internal sensors were receiving a massive overhaul. He was still thinking of this handiwork as he entered the complex. His mind was clearly distracted because if it weren't, he would have noticed that something small had flicked his shoulder. A beam of incandescent light surrounded him, fading away to reveal that he was no longer in the outer section of security.

He was in the brig.

"Welcome, Captain," came the voice of his Security Chief from nearby. "I wanted to start the demonstration off proper." She stood off to the left in front of a strange holographic projection table with a wide array of readouts. "Did you see the drone that tagged you, Sir?"

Harvey glanced up to spot the forcefield generators and quickly noticed that they were inactive. "Honestly, I have to say no. I was admiring your team's handiwork in the corridor." He stepped out from the cell before Camila could erect a forcefield and joined her at her portable table.

"That was a Type 1 drone," she said and bent over to her left to retrieve one to show him. "Small, maneuverable, and able to navigate any Jeffries Tube or shaft." She handed him the tiny drone for inspection. " Armed with 6 transporter chips, camera and a limited function tricorder able to read life signs. The chips, when they hit a target, it automatically transports them to the brig, as you've discovered."

"That's a lot packed into a small space," Harvey remarked, turning the drone around in his hand to examine the specimen. "Manually operated as well, I see."

"They're all manually operated, Captain," Camila said. "If any of them are seized by external methods, they'll automatically deactivate and an alert will be sent to the operator."

“How many of these would be active at a time?” Harvey asked, using a finger to spin the blades. “And how many would be manufactured in all throughout the ship?”

"I have the numbers for twenty-five per shift, but they'll alternate between the three types of drones," Camila told him. "As for total numbers throughout the ship, I want to have at least fifty of each for each shift, and another fifty of each in reserve."

“Would you deploy them throughout the ship?” Harvey asked her next. “And how would they be stored? Quick release compartments in corridors?”

The Security Chief shook her head. "No, Sir. Everything is going to be deployed from here in Security and controlled from here. We have charging compartment for each one and none of them are hard to maintain. Deployment figures on the holodeck indicates that we can get a drone from Security to any point in the ship within one minute."

Harvey smiled, providing a non-verbal approval. “Your report mentioned three types. This little one is clearly the first. Do you have the others ready for demonstration?”

Camila retrieved a second, slightly larger drone. "This one is armed with a Type I phaser, six transporter chips, camera and limited function tricorder able to read life signs and will be used in turbolift shafts and larger Jeffries Tubes as well," she told him. "And yes, I have demonstrations ready for you, but you'll be pleased to know that you aren't the target this time."

"I do appreciate that," Harvey remarked. "I've been shot enough at with a phaser to last several lifetimes. I take it this demonstration would actually be in the phaser range?"

"Yes, Sir," She said as she retrieved a third, larger drone. "This is the Type III Drone. It's armed with Type II Phaser with a dozen shots, two transporter chip firing mechanisms with six chips each, camera, a limited function tricorder to detect life signs and LRAD sound system. I plan to have them deployed in the corridors." With that, she turned and headed out of the Brig area after folding up the small holographic unit that she used to control the drones.

"A dozen shots at what setting?" Harvey asked, examining both of the new drones, using his fingers to manually inspect access points. "And how many of each of these are you thinking?"

"Setting three and ten on each deck," Camila said with a nod at the third one as they entered the phaser range. "They're too complicated to replicate quickly, but I still want ten as backup."

"Where do you plan on storing them?" Harvey asked, continuing with his barrage of questions. "If these are manually operated, how many can actually be employed at a time?"

"In the Armory," the ombre haired woman responded as she set up the holographic interface again. "All of them allotted for each shift," she said. "I have operators training in non-stop holographic simulations."

Harvey nodded, choosing to stay silent this time as he watched her set up the interface. The process seemed rather simple and not time-consuming at all. "I suppose you've considered field operations with these as well."

"Yes, Sir," Camila responded as she finished setting it up. "Computer, launch target simulation Two point One." She said. A holographic framework appeared to simulate a Jefferies Tube they could see into and several red outlines appeared as three different points along the hologram. "The Type II's will be sent in first since you saw the Type I in action."

He nodded approval to the lieutenant, crossing his arms as he watched the projection. For once, it was nice to see targets as alien species, and not brethren in uniform.

The Security Chief went back to her portable interface and picked up a pair of goggles to hand to the Captain. "Care to see what it sees?"

Harvey accepted the googles and put them on. Instantly, he was overwhelmed by the drone's viewpoint, accomplished through the use of what he assumed was a wide angle lens. "Whoa," he remarked, turning his head in different directions. As he turned, the drone turned with him. "Is this just for viewing, or are there controls with this?"

"That's just for viewing in real time, but also to review after the fact," Camila said. She put her hands in the holographic matrix and moved her fingers and the drone headed into the simulated Jeffries Tubes. She took the corners loose and low as she watched the targets in the display from overhead.

Harvey reached to grab a railing, but couldn't find one. The distorted viewpoint made it difficult for him to maintain his balance, a challenge that even his initial Zero-G training in the academy couldn't compare to. "Whoa," he murmured, staggering to keep upright.

"It's a bit disorientating at first, Captain," she told him when she noticed him staggering. "It's probably best if you take a seat, Sir." She slowed the speed of the drone and activated the tricorder function of it, bringing up new information in the goggles he wore. Body temperature, a list of potential species matching the reading and narrowed it down to Romulan and the distance between the target and the drone appeared in a HUD superimposed over his right eye.

Unfortunately, there wasn't a single seat to take. Harvey managed to collect himself, but his posture was still not correct. His eyes noted the additional data, and it did help to balance himself as there was something more stable to focus on. "I see Romulans, disruptors. What's the shielding on these things?"

"None," Camila said. "We had to sacrifice them for what they have on them." She vectored the medium sized drone around a corner nearly on the floor of the Jefferies Tube. "Select a target, Sir."

"The one on the left," Harvey stated, having made the choice based on who had a weapon already drawn.

She maneuvered the drone and activated a control and the goggles produced more information, this time being that a Type I phaser was armed. The camera view became more pronounced and another readout closed off the distance to the target he selected. "Phaser and transporter chips are online, Sir."

"Transport, first," Harvey stated. "If Romulans got aboard my ship, I'd want to know how and why."

"I'm on it," the Security Chief said as she swapped from the phaser to the transporter. She tapped a command and one of the transporter chips launched, but missed the Romulan. The target fired back, but the little drone ducked down and darted forward before another transporter chip fired. This time, the indicator on his HUD lit up and confirmed a hit and the target disappeared from the hologram.

"Was that the drone handling the evasive?" Harvey asked, surprised at the near-automatic reflex from the inanimate drone. A new disruptor told Harvey that the scenario wasn't yet complete, even as one of the rotors were struck and the drone began to struggle.

She cursed in Italian and abandoned the drone as it began to falter and launched a second one. This one went through the simulated Jeffries Tube much faster and as soon as the Romulan came into view, she began firing the Type II phaser at it. "Got you, you green blooded..."

The Romulan collapsed, stunned multiple times from the Type II Drone. The third and final target began to move backwards, firing blindly at the drone as he tried to repeat. "He's going for the hatch," he told Camila. "I think he's going to try and lock you out."

"He's welcome to...and did." The drone readout went blank in his goggles and Camila activated a Type III drone. She sent that one in a bit more cautiously as the computer reacted accordingly and activated the LRAD speakers on it. Simulated sound waves pounded through the Jefferies Tube and she pushed the drone forward.

The sound waves reverberated in the closed space, incapacitating the Romulan. "Good shot," Harvey remarked, taking off the goggles. "I can definitely tell you're still getting used to the controls. Practice makes perfect, as they say."

Camila ended the simulation and brought the drones back. "I'm still getting used to the controls," She admitted. "But the personnel I have dedicated to them are much better."

"I would hope so," Harvey said. "Well, Lieutenant, it seems I'll be approving this endeavor. I know supplies will be limited over the next few days, but I imagine you'll have all of your units replicated in a month or less. Good work."

"Thank you, Captain," she said as she packed up the drones and the portable holographic console. "As soon as things are back to full, I plan on going into full production."

"Keep me posted," Harvey stated, providing a confirming nod as well. "Anything else we need to discuss?"

"No, Sir," Camila said. "This was it for now, but I'm glad that I feel like I can finally come to you without you shooting everything down. I was starting to feel useless as your Chief of Security."

Harvey wouldn't admit this vocally, but part of the reason why he'd been cautious to approve any of her requests was due to the catastrophic effects of what happened when they'd used a tricobalt in a nebula. It wasn't every day when one accidentally punched a hole in the space/time continuum. Recent events with the Dolmoqour had been different, and the fact that these drones were non-lethal made it easier to approve the request. "My door is always open," he promised Camila. Then he turned and departed the phaser range.

After I prove you wrong Camila thought as she watched him leave, then packed everything up and headed to her next task.

 

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