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Building a Fleet

Posted on 07/15/2020 @ 6:45pm by Captain Hailey Konuha & Fleet Admiral Cerywyn

Mission: The Black Planet Rises
Location: Station Operation Center, Cerywyn's Office
Timeline: 242007.01

** note ** This takes place after "When Family Calls"

Hailey was busy with Station Operations as there wasn't a permanent StratOps Officer to attend to the duty. Hailey had been monitoring the initial traffic between the Tykarian officer, Lord Kellan, and f(Adm) Cerywyn. The news of a "pirate" coming on the station wasn't unheard of, but was something to definitely meet with caution.

Security signaled that they were already outside transporter room 12 waiting for the package to be delivered. The Tykarian ship had left Cyrga space and had retreated back to whence it came. All other ship traffic was being monitored and comms where quiet - unusually so. Since the incident with the falsified transmission from her father, Hailey had been working on a new algorithm to verify transmission origin and content. She wasn't going to be fooled again. The thought of it still fueled her anger at whomever it was that perpetrated the ruse. Still, the motive was unclear and that in of itself was cause for concern.

Her daily meeting with Cerywyn was coming due, so Hailey gave all the consoles one final look and then allow the on duty personnel to take over. She headed out the door and over to Cerywyn's office. Walking into the outer office she smiled at Lt Grace and motioned to the door that lead into Cerywyn's main office area.

Lt. Grace looked up and smiled. "Good day, Captain Konuha. The Admiral's expecting you. Go right in."

Cerywyn was buried behind a stack of PADDs. The stack she'd left unfinished when she'd rushed to her XO's aid. She was scanning crew reports and notes; fleet movements and the like. She heard the doors slide open and without looking up "Take a seat Captain. One of the transport vessels that recently arrived made an important delivery." She peeked over. "Asa and his marvelous teas and delectable dishes. He stopped by here earlier today. You'll find a plate of light foods and some steeping water and a variety of teas. Let me finish this PADD and I'll join you."

Hailey looked anxiously at the tea cart. She lightly bounced over and secured a small pastry and set herself up with some earl grey tea with a hint of jasmine in it. "Thank you, Admiral", she said said as she sat in her customary seat. She had an agenda in her mind of what they needed to talk about, but was hesitant on bringing up the investigation on the transmission. She knew that Cerywyn had "inside tracks" much deeper than she could ever hope for within - not on Starfleet - but also the Klingons and a host of other races. It was going to require all her self control to let Cerywyn take the lead on this one. Hailey was too close and she knew it.

Getting comfortable, she produced her own PADD and looked over the meetings agenda. Top of the list was the "pirate" that the Tykarians managed to rescue. Hailey hadn't gotten a chance to question her yet and wanted to get Cerywyn's perspective on it. Next was the alliance with the Tykarians - if there was one and finally, there was the overall fleet strength and assignments. Hailey waited patiently for Cerywyn to finish and join her.

Cerywyn finished the notes on the file she was working in, closed it and picked up her empty tea-cup and headed to the chair opposite of Hailey. Korin was not due back for another hour or so. She leaned over the tea tray, found one of the teaballs, filled it with the orange spice she loved so much, and then gently poured hot water over it. Moving to take her seat, she curled her legs up under her as she sat down. She eyed her XO carefully. She still looked a bit drawn around the eyes. "First things first, how are you feeling?"

Hailey almost choked on her tea at the question. How was she feeling? How did she THINK she was feeling? "I'm getting by, Admiral. I wasn't going to breach the subject as I wanted to give you time, but have you discovered anything else about the transmission? I'd really like to have a conversation with that 'petaQ'". It was the only word in Klingon that Hailey knew. But it didn't in anyway diminish what she felt. Hailey took a mouthful of tea to keep her from saying anything else.

Cerywyn raised an eyebrow. "You know, I do know how you're feeling, but I'd hoped you'd verbalize it" she said in typically counselor like fashion. Some habits die hard and sometimes never at all. "Keeping it bottled up, afraid, isn't going to help. And while we're at it, if you're going to swear in Klingon, you need to make sure you get the pronunciation right." She leaned back and sipped her tea. "To answer your question, it'll be a day or so before I can get confirmation. I have a hunch and you know me well enough to know that I'm not going to act purely on my hunch." She sighed quietly as she placed the delicate cup on the table and then lifted her gaze. "Let's work through this logically for a moment. First, the human pscyhe is delicate, about as delicate as this tea-cup. What would happen if I threw the cup against the ground?"

Hailey sighed. "It would shatter, of course", she said somewhat indignantly.

"Just so" Cerywyn nodded. "So, imagine Cyrga as the tea-cup for a moment. . . What's stands between 'us' here and anyone out 'there"? She motioned to the portal. There was an ancient Earth tactician, Sun Tzu who said, "That the impact of your army may be like a grindstone dashed against an egg--this is effected by the science of weak points and strong." She sipped quietly from her tea-cup, finishing off the remains. "What gain would there be were you not to be here, now, in this moment? What would happen if you were grief stricken and distraught? How might someone use such a moment to their advantage? To what end?"

Hailey frowned. She never had thought about being so incapacitated that she wouldn't be able to fulfill her duty. Additionally, she knew all to well what her absence from the station would mean at this time. It would leave a proverbial and critical "chink in the armor". Hailey looked at Cerywyn as if she has been scolded and nodded in agreement. "I know", she said solemnly. She quickly added, "but I'll have you know in NO WAY was I thinking of offing myself!" She regained her composure and took her last sip of her brewed beverage. "As for how someone might use it .. well .. I shudder to think the opportunity it would pose to the less scrupulous factions out there", she said as she nodded towards the stars. She eyed Cerywyn carefully. She knew all too well she was about to be checkmated in her mind game of chess. She was just trying to figure out what piece was going to perform the coup de gras.

Cerywyn observed the flash of emotions in Hailey's eyes even if her outward sullen expression belied them. She smiled with wry satisfaction at Hailey's exclamation. "Actually, I'd be more worried if you hadn't thought about" she paused what did you call it "offing yourself. The reality is most sane individuals at some point think about it. Grief and anger, depression, pessimism, cynicism - all take their toll on the psyche. As long as it is merely a thought without plan, it's within the range of normal. Such dark thoughts when they take hold, becoming well planned, not so much." She leaned back, folded her hands in her lap. "Until our forces are more fully developed here, we're stretched a bit thin, not detrimentally so, but it could be a tight race if pushed. I have a feeling, someone knows that a direct assault would be a tight race. Why risk an encounter if one can weaken from within. You, were a pawn in a much larger game." She frowned a bit. "All we can do is be vigilant. And speaking of vigilance..."

Cerywyn then shared the information regarding Captain Tanner and that Lt. Senn'Joss was seeing to the matter now. "I know you have questions....the short version is the Tykarian empire is rather large, powerful and at the same time, almost fiercely xenophobic. Not so much that they're afraid of others, more like, others are mere inconvenience for which they have no patience. Events happened in the past, in this region of space and involving Cyrga and myself and others - and were it not for Tykarian intervention, albeit they took Honegh 'hostage' to ensure negotiation, I'd not be sitting here. Cyrga might well not be here and this region of space would be bleak, to say the least. Eventually, things were set to right just in time for us to fight off the Borg. Between the two incidents, Starfleet was tasked with securing and defending pretty much a very hostile quadrant from here and at various other points and the Fleet was ill prepared to do that on their own unaided and a deal was struck with the Tykarians. They help monitor all along their known space and potentially quite a bit more, and no, I'm not giving you the map. They have technology we do not and they do no share, but they won't allow wanton destruction either." She paused to let that sink in. "They're also one of the most psychically gifted species known. I'm an anomaly. They're an entire culture."

Konuha was barely keeping up with all the information being thrown at her. "So, if the Tykarians are such a "recluse" species, why did they even dane a rescue of some other species?" Hailey thought for a moment. "Unless it was to keep the status quo in this sector? Is that it Admiral? What aren't you telling me?"

Cerywyn shook her head. "No. The rescue was done to hopefully avoid notice." Cerywyn walked over to a nearby console and motioned for Hailey to come over. "By the time she's reached her side, Cerywyn had activated a map of the Delta Quadrant, pulled from Cyrga's databanks. "Notice this void in space? This is the Klae System. The 'rescue' happened in, just inside the boundary. We don't have tons of data" Cerywyn paused "beyond personal experience" shet muttered. "When we first encountered Cyrga, the crew of the Endeavour encountered the Klael and another species, the Kanterri. Of the two, the Klael are the ones who inhabit this void on the map. It's not really a void. Sensors have been sent in and it is a small planetary/sub-plantary system. Over the years we've picked up bits and pieces of data. The Klael are actually one of 5 races that inhabit the system. They are, however, the warriors of the group. And I'll say this again. They are savage brutes and they have no use for women of any kind. Had Lord Kellan left Captain Tanner, her fate would have been a foregone conclusion. He intervened because she was human. They are xenophobic yes. They're arrogant, yes. But they're not the kind of people who will sit idly by and do nothing - or at least Lord Kellan is not." She smiled. "There's plenty I'm not telling you - at least not at this moment and you'll have to leave it at that, Captain."

Konuha grimaced. She hated being left out of the loop. "Aye, Admiral", she answered begrudgingly. "I guess I'll be looped in when the time is appropriate. In the meantime, we've covered the pirate and the Tykarians. Shall we move on to fleet coverage and overall strength?" Hailey motioned back to the sitting area. She wanted more tea and another pastry. "It's the last item on the agenda."

She nodded and walked back to her seat. "Hailey, I'm not closing you out or leaving you out of the loop. There are some things that are just painful and at the moment not relevant. When they become relevant, we'll see. As for anything else, you have the same data I do. There are some parts of my job that are more classified and dark than the needle and a haystack" She smiled ruefully. "It's not intentional and you know that." She motioned Hailey back to her seat. "As for fleet coverage - Starfleet is sending us what I requested; the rest, we'll have to build. Cyrga's compliment includes fully functioning ship building capabilities. Parts are being brought in with the ships arriving. Additionally, the IXL will be linking their resources with ours. As far as the Federation and Starfleet are concerned, the Delta Quadrant is my job and securing it, building it, left in our capable hands. I have have the authority and blessing of both to establish whatever networks, political or economical, as needed. We'll also be getting crew compliments and we'll be sent officers from the academy as they graduate - as well as transfers here and there."

Hailey marked it all down and filed it on her PADD. "Well, it seems like everything is in order, Admiral", she said flatly. Konuha knew all too well the limits the Admiral had when it came to making the Delta Quadrant safe. Except in a very rare case, there weren't any. She was also well aware of what she was privy to know and not know. Such was the life of a Starfleet Officer. "Do you have any further orders for me, Admiral?", Hailey asked of her superior.

Cerywyn shook her head. "No, I trrust you do what you always do." She sighed. "I did give you my word that as soon as I have confirmation, I'll let you know about the other matter." She frowned, Hailey's tone was concerning in it's semi-lifeless, flat attention to duty. "Get some sleep, Captain." She stood up and headed toward the door herself. "I have an appointment in main medical. Since I figured you'd berate me for not going earlier, I was preemptive and scheduled it myself. I should probably not keep the CMO waiting." She was about to step through the door. "For the record, duty is important, but friends and family, more so. Most of what I do is occurs after the 'but' not before." With that she strode into the ante-room past Grace's desk calling out to Captain Konuha "We'll talk tomorrow."

Konuha simply nodded. The idea of getting checked out by medical wasn't one of her more favorite ideas, but Cerywyn was right. She would have berate her for not going. The opposite was also true and Cerywyn had already made it clear in her own roundabout way that a medical check might be in order. She headed out the door, "See you later, Grace", she said as she passed.

++taps++ "Konuha to Medical"
++taps++ "Medical here, Nurse Urdu, here
++taps++ Please schedule me an annual psysche evaluation as soon as it's convenient
++taps++ Right away Capt, Medical out

Konuha sighed and walked back to her office in Station Operations.

 

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