Meeting of the Minds
Baptism by Fire
Location: Science Department
Timeline: 24 hours before getting underway
Amanda was half way through her walk of the ship, something she did at least twice a day now, when she had time. She came across various crewmen in the process of their duties. Being the Operations Chief also, gave her a different perspective and outlook when it came to how she dealt with the crew. Many times she would stop a crewman who was dealing with a problem. Ask them what they were working on and get them to tell her how they planned to tackle the situation and move forward. She would usually give pointers or even learn something new during these encounters. Today would be no different. It had been two days since the last mission briefing. It was almost time for another as Star Fleet was pushing the to get underway.
She would need to speak to her Science Officer and Intelligence before the up coming briefing.
As Amanda entered the Science department she looked for Jackson. As she moved through and found her, she approached with caution.
"Good morning Vanessa. How goes it?" She asked
Vanessa was standing on a counter, going through cabinets of equipment. She turned, "Hello, commander. We're getting there. How are you?"
"I'm good to go. I came down to see you to check on your progress with the research of the area we are being dispatched to. Have you found anything that we need to pay special attention too?" Asked Sexton.
"There's been some odd traffic in the shipping lanes. Nothing to cause any red flags, but the number of independent freighters has increased. It may indicate something, or it may just be a coincidence. I'm waiting for Lieutenant Krong to get me more information." She put a final quantum microscope in the cabinet and hopped down. "I've been pulling double shifts to get everything put away properly, so I don't mind the delay."
"I like you. Your work ethic is great. And I noticed that you were interested in my story during the welcome briefing. So I figured in the interest of being friends as well as co-workers, I'd come down and we could have a one on one and build a bond." She said sheepishly.
"I was. Come have a seat." Vanessa led her to her office and moved a box off her couch so the two could sit down. "I would love to hear your story."
"Well." as she sat down and looked at her new friend. "I was found adrift on a shuttle three years ago, on the edge of known space or as close to the Delta Quadrant as you can get without some kind of outside help or interferance. The best they could figure was I was a part of some experiment that had gone wrong and ended up out here. They identified me by my DNA because I had no memory. But my clothing and the shuttle I was in said that I came from possibly another time. Thats all ive been privvy to. I was retrained and went back to Star Fleet and given a chance to continue working for Star Fleet. And here we are today. But since I woke up, I don't take many unnecessary chances. And I guard my history as a rule." said Amanda
"That would be difficult, not knowing where or when you came from," the science officer said. "You seem to have adjusted well."
It was at that moment that Captain Desmond entered the science lab and saw his two officers. "Commander Sexton, Lieutenant Jackson, I'm glad you're both here."
"Hello, Captain. How can I help you?" Vanessa asked.
"I promise, I'm not snooping...I just wanted to make sure that each department is up for the task. I've spent the last three years teaching at the Academy, I can read a personnel profile pretty well. For a lot of the Senior Staff this is their first major posting on a front line vessel. So I want to sit down and talk with all of the Senior Staff members individually, with the XO present."
Vanessa nodded. "Please, have a seat. What would you like to know?"
Amanda had not expected him to come to Science at this time. But here he was, so she switched to XO mode.
Vanessa glanced at Amanda, noting the change in demeanor. Later, she'd have to sit down with the First Officer and continue their chat, but right now, it was back to business.
"Well Lieutenant, let me tell you about me first. I graduated from Starfleet Academy in 2246, I received my commission as a JG and was initially assigned to the U.S.S. Walker as the Assistant Security Chief. I was a security chief on the Enterprise under Captain April, aide-de-camp to Commodore Martin on Starbase 11, did some training with Captain Pike on the Enterprise, assigned to the U.S.S. Ride as XO, broke my back in two places at the Battle of the Binary Stars and been riding a desk at the Academy ever since. That's just a high-level overview of me."
That was her cue to share something of herself. Vanessa nodded. "I'm an archaeologist, anthropologist, and historian. I was raised on earth, went to university, taught for a couple of years, then decided to join Starfleet. I occasionally take a few months off to work on an archaeological site, but for now, I like exploring and discovering ancient civilizations." He'd read her personnel file, so she didn't feel the need to delineate her career. "I've served on several ships, and now I'm here."
Captain Desmond nodded, "Well, my understanding is that after we figure out what's going on near the neutral zone, we're going to be starting a five-year exploration mission," he looked over at the XO, "XO, what about you? Have anything you'd like to share with the class?"
Vanessa nodded and turned to Sexton.
"Actually I can't say that I do. The two of you know really all there is to know about me. Vanessa and I engaged in a bit of girl talk, so we are caught up." as she winked at Vanessa, hoping that her boss would get it.
Captain Desmond nodded, "I completely understand. Carry on ladies. See you at the briefing."
"Thank you, sir," Vanessa said as the Captain left. Then she turned back to Amanda. "That was brief. I'm not sure what I expected, though."
"He is a good man. I've been with him since the end of my recovery. He is responsible for me staying in Star Fleet." said Sexton
"It's good to have someone like that at your back," Vanessa said. "I have my sister, although we're both in Starfleet now so we don't see each other much."
"That's a shame. Sisters should be closer." Said Sexton
"I think so, but then, Alex and I are identical twins, both in science, and that tends to cause some issues." She couldn't help grinning. "Although it was fun for a few years while we both taught."
There was a sadness about this, but this was Star Fleet, and if it could go wrong, you could look forward to it happening at the worst possible times.
"What sat we have a drink later, about 8pm, if you're up to it. Ill be in the lounge." asked Amanda
"Okay. I'll see you then," Vanessa said. She hoped that the two women could become friends.