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Departure

Posted on 04 Feb 2020 @ 1:38am by Captain Harvey Geisler & Commander Terry Walsh & Commander Jayla Kij & Lieutenant Commander Joey Geisler & Lieutenant Commander Gemma Alexander & Lieutenant Commander Camila Di Pasquale & Lieutenant Commander Arjin Djinx & Lieutenant JG Charles McCullen & Lieutenant JG Damian Akorem & Lieutenant JG Lina Sorensen

Mission: Sentience
Location: Bridge
Timeline: MD 1 || 1200 hours

The morning had quickly passed, unlike the slow pace of six months in drydock. A new energy and vigor had rippled through the mighty USS Black Hawk as the crew embraced a resolve to get the starship ready for departure. Rather than hide in his ready room, Captain Geisler planted himself on the bridge to observe his crew as they finished preparations.

The departure of the Black Hawk after a six month repair round demanded Arjin's presence on the bridge. Otherwise he would have been content to stay in his Lab office. It was the first time really after his shameful capture he had re-entered the room. Luckily non who were there then were present at this time. So he aknowledged the Captain with a short "Sir" before heading over to his designated post.

Terry had used the morning, post-briefing, to move in to his new office. He'd put the small models of the fighters he'd flown on the shelf behind his desk. Granted there were only three, Tyhpoon, Valkyrie, and Gryphon, but they were still reminders of where he'd come from. He'd also brought up one of his favorite coffee cups from his quarters and found a little something in the second drawer of the right hand side of the desk. He supposed it to be the good stuff that very few people knew about. After settling in somewhat, he'd put together a list of the departments and chiefs he would be visiting later. After a good lunch, Terry had gone to the bridge to go over the console and set it up for his preferences. He'd noticed the Science Chief enter and take up position rather quietly and then wondered if the science station didn't need much preparations.

"Captain, Commander Walsh, Commander Djinx," Joey greeted with a nod of her head when the three men appeared on the bridge. She stood at the Intelligence station trying to acquaint herself with the new holographic display that accompanied the console, feeling rather confident she would have the hang of it in no time. However, this was the first time she'd stepped onto the bridge since she practically handed it over to the Dolmoqour some months back. Many circumstances prevented her from returning before now, though, now wasn't the time to reminisce about such things. Not when they were about to take the ship out for her shakedown cruise.

Camila arrived and gave nods to the other officers present and took a seat her station and began running a check on everything. "Hopefully this should be pleasant and worry free," she said.

Damian had been on the bridge for a little over an hour, watching the comings and goings of various officers in preparation for the launch. The last few weeks of work had been hard. But now was the moment he had been waiting for. With the launch about to be underway, his workload was about to either be half what it was if everything worked fine or about to double if everything broke down. He was hedging his bets somewhere in the middle. That his workload was going to be about normal. He was just finishing up one of the last systems diagnostics that he could perform while they were still docked. Anything after this would have to wait. He took a sip of his jestral tea, savoured the taste and took a few seconds to center himself.

Lina entered the bridge which was already quite crowded. It was not really her favorite place, but as Chief Engineer she was also on the bridge every now and then. Especially at an occasion like this, her place was up there. So with a friendly nod to the fellow officers who looked at her, she wentover to the engineering console and activated it.

Charlie was ready, and he'd made the Black Hawk as ready as he could for departure. Everything was set as far as he could set it without further instructions. He sat at the helm, fingers resting on the edges of the console, idly tapping out a gentle rhythm as he waited.

Harvey crossed the bridge, nodding to Commander Di Pasquale as he passed her station. He didn't take his seat, but instead he stood behind it, taking one step to the left and placed his right hand on top of the headrest. For a moment, he looked down at the chair, recalling that it had been a while since he'd actually sat in it. He knew the other shift leaders, including the graveyard shift, had used it in his absence, as indicated by the liquid stain that crept in the side of the chair before the fabric met the armrest. He'd have to have that cleaned soon... and figure out who did it.

The Captain took in a deep breath and looked back up to the viewscreen. The time to stretch their legs had come at last. "All stations, report," he called out.

"Intel reports ready, Captain," Joey said, feeling as though she had a better grasp on the new console and holographic display.

"Science console in full working order, Sir. Ready for departure.", Arjin added.

At helm, Charlie couldn't help but give the readings on the console another look over. He'd checked them again and again, dozens of times, but that tiny seed of doubt that sat in the very back of his brain made him check again before he turned to look at Harvey, "helm is ready to depart when you give the word, sir."

"I'm all set here," said Terry. "Everything is looking normal so far."

"Security and Tactical are ready, Sir," Camila said.

Lina looked up for a moment and towards the Commanding officer. "Engineering, ready, Captain."

"Operations ready, Captain. All systems are online and functional." Damian replied.

Harvey keyed the comm system. "Bridge to sickbay. Doctor Kij, status report."

=/\=Sick Bay is ready for departure, sir,=/\= Jayla replied.

The Captain opened a new channel now, directing it at the Flight Deck. "Bridge to Flight Deck. Commander Alexander, is the squadron ready for departure?"

"All lights green. We are ready and eager Sir." Alexander reported from the Flight Deck's command center as her eyes roved over the holographic display.

Satisfied with the crew reports, Harvey adjusted his grip on the command chair and began to issue orders. "Engineering, disconnect us from the drydock's power generators. Ops, request permission from Gamma Command to depart."

"Aye, Sir," she said and her hands flew over the engineering console. She prefered to use the traditional way and had not activated the holographic gadgets yet. It did not take very long until all the small lights showed green.
"We are disconnected, Sir."

"Helm," Harvey ordered, choosing this particular moment to officially sit in his chair. "Clear all moorings, then thrust ahead full to take us to exit lane gamma."

"Aye sir," McCullen replied, his hands which had until now been resting on the edge of the console springing into action, initiating a series of commands in chain that would set the Black Hawk free from her capture, "docking clamps released, umbilical retracted, moorings cleared." He reported as the sequence ran, and then it was time for the fun part. He brought the aft thrusters up and the ship began to move under her own power for the first time in six months, gathering speed as it moved.

Charlie gave her a nudge to starboard and then hit the starboard quarter and port bow thrusters, swinging her around to line up with the exit lane, she responded just as she had in the simulations, gracefully turning to starboard as she slid laterally into the lane. He brought her drift to an end with a squirt of port thruster and then they were on course, heading down the exit lane.

"In the lane at full ahead thrust," he finished, grinning to himself at how smooth the ship moved, "impulse engines standing by."

Harvey leaned back in his chair, enjoying the pleasurable view on the screen ahead. For the first time in months, it was good to see New Bajor from a position other than Drydock or Gamma Command. The less he saw of it soon, the better. "Ahead full impulse," he instructed. He tapped a button on his armrest and a holographic projection of the solar system flashed into existence, as well as an overlay of Lieutenant McCullen's approved course. "As soon as we clear the lane, adjust heading to zero-two-one, mark zero-zero-five, at warp factor..." Harvey paused, trying to consider the best possible speed. After a couple moments of reflection, he finished with, "Warp factor at helm's discretion."

"Aye sir, full impulse." McCullen responded, bringing the drives online and increasing speed to full impulse at the same time as he shut down the aft thrusters. He watched the readings carefully, the impulse engines were, like so many things on the ship, new, and while he had full confidence that the engineers had done their jobs, it was his duty to make sure. The fusion reactors and impulse engines did what they were supposed to do and ship surged ahead to her full impulse speed. Next.

"Zero-two-one, mark zero-zero-five..." he repeated as he entered the coordinates and plotted the course from the rapidly approaching lane exit. Charlie was beset by a moment of indecision and he hesitated. The desire to punch it and hold down the warp speed button until it maxed out was almost too strong to resist, but the knowledge that, like the impulse engines, the warp coils and systems were all new and probably needed breaking in tempered it. "uh... warp factor five."

Harvey remained sitting in his chair, savoring the moment for a bit. He'd almost forgotten how much he enjoyed being underway. Six months of being trapped in drydock seemed to melt away almost instantly. No longer was he a lame duck, an wounded bird kept grounded and forbidden to return to the sky. He was free. The Black Hawk was free. Harvey was determined to enjoy this shakedown cruise as much as possible, no matter what.

Arjin looked straigth towards the big screen. They were off at last. Maybe the quest for new discoveries would clench his thoughts. For now he had to see the repairs to the Lab's and tests of the new sensors were produced. He would hold a meeting with several key scientists soon.

Charlie's console beeped, telling him that they were at the end of the exit lane and entering free space. "We're free and clear of the lane, engaging warp engines in three," he unloaded the impulse engines and let the ship's momentum carry them forward, "two," at the same time he spooled up the warp core, charging the coils and watched the warp bubble form, "one."

Charlie hit the gas button and on the viewscreen the stars stretched and with a flash, the ship jumped to warp five. A scan of the panel told him that the engines were holding steady and they were on course without any obvious drift.

"All right, everyone," the Captain said at last. "Our shakedown tasks are now our top priorities. All departments know precisely what you should be doing. Let's get to it." He, however, wasn't going to be moved from his chair. And when he did, it would be to have that stain taken care of. Hopefully, that stain would be the worst thing that would happen on this mission.

 

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