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A Word In Your Ear

Posted on Thu Jan 14th, 2021 @ 11:42am by Freya Lightwood & Commander Daynah Ral

Mission: Prologue: New Faces
Location: XO's Office, Starbase 718

The Federation News Service had been ever present on major Starfleet installations since long before Freya could put pen to paper. She liked the old fashioned way of writing but mostly stuck with the traditional tech of the time. She was inquisitive, intelligent and sometimes impulsive in her young age but still she was a professional and loved to ask questions to get to know the real people of Starfleet.

Her father had been an officer, sadly he had passed now, but it still made her want to know what her father had been a part of and what made him choose the stars he passed by.

Starbase 718 had undergone a major refit and crew change and Freya wanted to know why. She wanted to know who was coming in and what they wanted here.

She had been ignored by the Commanding Officer so far, Commander T'San, but thought that the First Officer might be more accommodating and she had managed to get an appointment with her. Pressing the chime she got herself ready, made sure she had everything she needed and waited for her acceptance inside.

Daynah had reluctantly accepted the appointment with a reported from the news service. It was more like she was ordered to fall on this grenade for Aranis. It comes with the territory when you are the XO. As such she had practiced saying 'I have no comment on that' with different inflections in her voice all morning. When the chime went off she signalled that the reporter should enter. The sooner this was over with the better. "Ms Lightwood I presume. Welcome please have a seat. Can I get you anything?" With any luck the reporter would not be there long, however, Daynah felt compelled to be a cordial host. Not speaking to reporters was something that all of the previous hosts of Ral seemed to agree on, and that rarely happened.

"Just a water please, Commander Ral." she said. "I would thank you for seeing me but I get the impression that Commander T'San has dumped this on your lap as he has refused many requests from my office for an interview." she said simply. There was no malice in her voice but disappointment. He was the new CO, and already he was dodging the Federation News Service (FNS).

Daynah replicated a glass of water for Freya and a racktijino for herself. "You have to understand that Commander T'San is uniquely busy man. It is said without question that a Starship Captain's day is busy well Commander T'San must run this entire station which as you can imagine makes his day that much busier. So it is my duty and pleasure as the XO to answer any question that you may have." Daynah assembled all of her diplomacy to say that. She made sure that there wasn't a hint of sarcasm in her voice. Daynah Ral was determined to make sure that the station and Commander T'San were painted in the best light possible.

"I understand that but he is the new CO of a large starbase in the middle of a region known for escalating situations from even the smallest event. I am sure the Federations inhabitants, our readers, would have liked to her from the man that is taking over here." she said with a sigh. She knew she wasn't going to get anywhere with this line of questioning. "As I cannot then I will ask you. How do you feel about taking on the role of First Officer on Starbase 718? There is a lot of tension in the area from the Romulans. How does that make you feel after the events that led to our relationship with them?"

"I am deeply honored and excited to be taking the role of First Officer. It is a large leap forward in my career and one that I hope I can do the most good for Starfleet and the Federation with. As to the Romulans, I do not see any more tension than the normal. Thankfully I have the benefit of experience from Ral. That said, I think that in due time the Romulans will become just as staunch as an ally to the Federation as the Klingons. The Federation's relationship with the Romulans has always been shaky ever since first contact all those many years ago. The Hobus star was just a culmination of things from all those years. It seems that to the Romulans who wanted to become friends we have let them down, and to the ones who didn't want friendship it is just par for the course with us. So we are going to have to work at rebuilding that trust again. Something that is not easily done with Romulans." Daynah replied as she tented her fingers on her desk. She sipped her rachtijino nonchalantly when she finished speaking. Daynah knew that it was important to at least project the image that she was in control of the interview.

Freya was of course recording this but she was used to the professional spiel that Starfleet officers seemed to be well trained in. The proper diplomatic speech that gave nothing really to feed off of. "So you have not heard of the unrest on the nearby Romulan worlds? They claim that Starfleet is here to spy on them, that the New Republic sending an envoy here will prove costly?" she asked. "I wonder how many other officers feel Starfleet let the Romulans down when they needed them the most. When they were abandoned." she left the comment hanging.

"I have indeed heard of the unrest and as I said when I answered your previous question there are some Romulans who simply feel we abandoned them and as such will return to the old ways. The old way that the Empire viewed the Federation. As to whether or not Starfleet abandoned the Romulans, that is not for me to say." Daynah knew better than to question Admirals decisions on the record. She would not fall into this reporter's trap.

"And how do you feel serving under Commander T'San?" she asked. "He has been in Starfleet for many decades, fought many battles, but he could not save his own home world. His people displaced, he has fought back to make a place for himself with us. Do you think he is the right man to be in command here, that he is over his POW experience from the Dominion War. I know people still suffer from that time, and I am curious to know what your thoughts are on your Commanding Officer that you share the same rank with? What makes him more qualified than you?"

And now Daynah wanted to punch the reporter in the jaw. If it meant anything Ral wanted to do the same. How dare this woman try to sow distrust among T'San and I. Daynah thought. "Commander T'San is the right man for the job because Command believes he is, and what is more I believe he is. As to his people I would like to ask you a question. How would you fare against the Borg?"

"Oh no I would crumble for sure." She admitted. "But I do not, and have never, had access to fleets and ships to protect me or defend me." she said making a small note. The Commander was good at deflecting, posing her own questions. "Unless you count Starfleet..." she trailed off as the thought entered and then left her head.

"I am glad you have such faith in Commander T'San. Do you think that has anything to do with the past your share him? I understand your symbiont served with him many years ago. Is that former relationship a basis for your faith in your new CO? Now the table has flipped and you serve under him. That does not cause any blurred lines?" She asked. "I am simply curious as I have not met many joined Trill."

"The being that served with Commander T'San is dead. The memories and knowledge of that relationship lives on in the mind of Ral. When Ral joined with me, together we created a new being. So that would end the idea of any blurred lines. It is true that when I first met the Commander I felt a certain connection with him, like seeing an old friend for the first time in years. However, we Trill are trained for just such an occurrence. You must treat the meeting as if it has never happened before and allow the person to judge you for the new being that you are now." Daynah said with a smile. She could not resist one little dig at the reporter. "Yes, Starfleet does count as the fleet that is there to protect you."

"Sounds like an interesting experience, the joining of Trill and symbiote." Freya replied as she made some notes on her PADD. "I am glad that you say Starfleet in there to protect us Commander. The readers within the civilian fleet will take great comfort from that as they are attacked by Breen, the Tholians, Gorn and the Tzenkethi. Starfleet does respond but usually to pick up the pieces. You are stretched thin in this region and now have a little more back up as Commander T'San has brought 3-4 ships with him for use by this station. From what I have heard through several channels is that T'San believes in the core of old Starfleet values, that he will strive to make forward moves as the Federation takes backwards steps. There seems to be glimmers of hope in a slowly diminishing galaxy..."

"Well that makes two of us, and is the real reason that I signed on here at 718. The fleet cannot close in on itself. To do so would go against everything Starfleet has ever stood for. In a time like this it is even more crucial to reach out with a hand to help rather than turn one's back. All those civilians that you mentioned will find help and protection here." Daynah replied as the tone of her voice turned serious. She wanted to make sure that everything was crystal clear.

Freya nodded and smiled. "Thank you Commander. I think I have all I need for the moment." She said turning off her camera and putting down her PADD. "I have enjoyed this. It is nice to see someone as passionate as you taking over here and I am sure you will be warmly welcomed."

Daynah smiled warmly. In truth she did not really like chatting with the press however, this reporter was relatively harmless. Although Daynah would hate to give the other woman a reason for ire. "I have enjoyed it as well and my office is always open."

Freya nodded as she rose from her seat. "Until next time Commander." She smiled and left.


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