NCC - 81102
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Setting an Expectation

Posted on Wed Aug 19th, 2020 @ 1:22pm by Ensign Alex Dalton & Commander Tavis Inahri

Mission: Mission 1: Dirty Little Secret
Location: Captain's Ready Room
Timeline: MD 7

With his belongings hurriedly stored away the newly arrived Ensign moved through the ship toward the turbo car forcing down his rising nerves and unbridled excitement.

The transporter chief had given him some rather direct instructions the moment he'd stepped aboard: "Report to the Captain, he's expecting you." Immediately it sent a swarm of butterflies churning in the pit of his stomach and a hundred questions danced in his brain.

Alex willed himself to remain calm, he couldn't afford to ruin his early appearances among the crew especially the Captain - first impressions could not be repeated his parents consistently reminded him. This could be vital turning point in his career, a springboard onto further development providing he could still his nervous tongue and remain professional.

In the privacy of the lift car he wiped his sweating palms on his pants and sought some inner peace before the doors parted to reveal the bridge in all its glory.

The Ensign hesitated momentarily drinking in the view for the first time, thought very familiar with starships, the bridge much akin to beating heart of the vessel was in his opinion a beautiful and special place. His eyes raked the consoles, screens and the incoming data hungrily before he came to his senses and headed toward the Captain's ready room.

With a steadying breath he pressed the chime and waited.

"Enter," he heard from the other side.

Without further delay Alex crossed the threshold into the Captain's sanitary, crossed the room swiftly and stood attention: "Ensign Alexander Dalton reporting for duty, sir."

Tavis looked up from his tablet, eyeing the man standing in front of him. "Please, relax," he said, placing the tablet on the desk. "Ensign Dalton, how can I help you?"

The younger man faltered slightly feeling the weight of the Captain's eye bore through him. he hadn't expected Inahri to ask him that question. "I'm your new Chief of Operations Officer sir, I was instructed by the transporter chief to report to you."

Giving the man a look up and down, Tavis looked at him slightly surprised, "Welcome aboard, Ensign," he said, standing to extend his hand. "So you're the one we picked up from the Wellington. Happy to have you aboard."

Stepping forward to shake the offered hand Alex gave a small smile. "Thank you, sir. Happy to be here."

Tavis gestured for the man to take a seat as he sat back down behind his desk. "So, tell me a bit about yourself Ensign."

Obediently Alex did so relieved they'd past the entail awkwardness. "Being in space is in my blood," he started. "Both my parents still currently serve in Starfleet, being the eldest of five siblings I quickly learned how to multitask and drive a team forward which has assisted me my career. Outside of the uniform however, I'm more of risk taker and enjoying living on the edge with extreme sports and free diving."

Extreme sports was not something Tavis would have guessed, looking at the man. Though he always did appreciate twists in perception. "Good to know. I'm sure your parents are quite proud of your career in Starfleet. Speak to them often?"

Alex nodded, "We try to catch up once every few weeks or so, of course its not always that simple. Hannah, the youngest of us all in also in the Academy and chomping on the bit to finish."

Tavis smiled. His own parents, while proud, weren't exactly the most supportive of his choice to leave the priesthood to join Starfleet. He wondered for a moment what it would have been like if they were more supportive like Mr Dalton's parents probably were. "Your service record looks good," Tavis said, changing the subject. "Just curious, you haven't been promoted to a JG yet. Any idea as to why that is?"

Secretly Alex had been asking the same thing these recent months prior to his transfer, but had withheld any argument or discussions with his superiors. They clearly had their reasons after all his was fair from perfect.

He shrugged his board shoulders: "I'm not with my faults, sir. I can't deny that, I would only guess, perhaps I was not as cynical as my peers."

"You think being cynical is the key to moving up?" Tavis asked, surprised by the man's answer.

"I tend to be a messy worker," Alex's cheeks coloured slightly with embarrassment. "It would look disorganized to the observer despite my results."

Tavis looked at the man for a moment, allowing his empathic skills to assist in determining the man's feelings. "Does it look disorganized to you?" he asked.

The Ensign shook his head, "No, not at all. It may not be a standard way of practice perhaps but it doesn't detract from my ability to carry out my duty or repairing ships systems."

"Sometimes people have different ways of doing things. I try not to dictate what and how people should go about their business, as long as they aren't harming anyone or disrupting anything." Tavis picked up the PADD and glanced at it, "From reading the messages from your previous COs, they seem to appreciate, despite your unorthodox ways of doing things, that you always come through for them. That's something to be proud of, Ensign."

The younger man grinned at the unexpected praise, "Thank you sir, that's very good to hear. I appreciate your honesty and confidence in allowing the crew to work in that manner."

Tavis nodded. "Have you ever served on the Bridge before?" he asked, thumbing the PADD screen as he scrolled through. "I'm not seeing anything that specifically says that you have."

"I have served short burst on the bridge, mostly as relief or gamma watch," Alex explained. "I know my around the consoles if that's what you're concerned about."

"It's not," Tavis said. "Working on the Bridge, especially as a department head, you're responsible for everything going on at the same time, as well as dealing with whatever craziness is happening on the bridge. Operations is one of the more important departments on a Starship; being an auxiliary to Engineering, as well as dealing with all Computer, power and sensor-related issues. It can be a lot to handle while on the Bridge."

Alex bit his tongue as the Captain voicing his doubts regarding the young mans ability since his file lacked key notes. It was becoming apparently clear Inahri was going to be a hard man to impress or convince otherwise especially sitting in his office. Talk about judging a book by its cover the Ensign thought privately.

“Would you prefer I ran some simulations first?” he asked off handily then winced at his impatient tone and word choice.

Tavis shook his head, "No, not at all. I'm not questioning your ability, I'm merely covering the bases so that you know what's ahead of you. This job is very different from your other jobs, and I'm just making sure you're prepared for it."

"I see," Alex replied softly dropping his gaze feeling a touch foolish. Lifting his eye again the Ensign tried to regain his composure. "I like to think I'm up to the task, I suppose we'll find out soon enough."

"That's what I like to hear, Ensign," Tavis said with a smile as he stood. "Confidence is key. Go with it, I'm sure you'll do great." He offered his hand to the young man.

Mirroring his action Alex stood and grasped the outstretched hand firmly. "Thank you, sir. I'll liaise with my team and our chief engineer to bring me up to speed on the ships systems."

"Great idea. We have a lot of new systems on board that I brought up to Lieutenant Aurora. You'll want to get a full report on those systems as they fall directly under your purview," Tavis said. "Dismissed, Ensign."


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