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Different Stripes

Posted on Fri May 11th, 2018 @ 8:04pm by Commander Alexandria 'Alex' Harper & Captain Calvin Myers

Mission: The Junk Heap
Location: Captain's Ready Room
Timeline: Following The Same Cloth

Shortly after Williams left, Alex made herself another cup of coffee and made herself drink it while replaying the conversation over again in her head. Partly because she wanted the details fresh in her mind, partly because she needed to not act without all of her facts in a row. She pulled up the security chief's file once she'd ran through it thoroughly, read through it over a third cup, then headed straight for Myer's office.

When she arrived, there was a temptation to check and insure that there hadn't been a temporal rift incident aboard the ship. The first notable change -after the snickers on the bridge - was the lack of a pressure door... replaced by a curtain of crystal beads. The floor of his office was covered in a bright orange shag carpet, his desk was replaced by a significant set of bongos, the chairs had been replaced with bean bags, and beads separated half of the room off and a large lounger was there, hot pink and tiger striped. Black lights lit portions of the room where psychedelic posters had been hung, and a disco ball sent odd reflections of light around the room, dancing on the wall. A massive aquarium had been installed all around the perimeter in the room with an impressive assortment of exotic - though weird may have been the better word - fish with neon gravel and decor. A neon blue light had been installed in the tank, creating an odd contrast in lighting. White Rabbit quietly played in the background.

Calvin stood in the middle of all of this, holding a tray of brownies and what appeared to be an invoice. He looked somewhere between terrified and confused, his free hand covering his mouth lightly as if he didn't want to let all of the words rushing through his mind fall out of his mouth in an unbridled rush. He seemed so baffled and confused by his ready room that he didn't even notice his XO approach.

Alex crossed her arms over her chest as she came to stand next to the captain, her head nodding slightly as she took the view in. "What the fuck happened?" she asked when she finally did speak.

"The nineteen sixties?" Calvin offered, sounding utterly befuddled. "I'm gonna kill her..."

"Girlfriend?" the XO asked casually.

"Counselor," Calvin said, looking down at the invoice. "Ten-thousand, four-hundred, and seventy-nine credits, Harper. That's the bill she left me, Harper. For this. For *this*," He said, wildly waving his free hand around the room.

"With the lack of three dozen hookers and crank, I'd say you really got gyped," Alex said as she toed a clump of orange carpet. "The carpet's kinda fun though. Yeah, um.. so I met the security chief. Have you read her records? And before you ask- she's still alive."

"Yeah... I uh..." Calvin rubbed his eyes, "You know what? Conference room," He said, turning and marching out of his ready room. He snatched an ensign by the front of his shirt and pulled him close, "All of that. Gone. Back to normal. Or I'm tossing you out an airlock, kay?" He said, flatly.

"Uh... y-yessir," The Ensign said, looking shocked, before pulling free and running to get started on clearing the ready room.

Calvin continued wordlessly back on to the Conference room.

Alex gave the ensign's shoulder a reassuring squeeze. "He won't vent you.." she told him as she started to follow after Calvin. "They're probably broken anyhow." Not another word was said until they reached the conference room, where she set the padd with Williams' file in front of him. Then nudged a little closer. "No."

"No?" Calvin said, looking down at the PADD for a moment, then back to Harper. "Why no? She seemed a little distraught, but not the worst we've got," He explained. "I haven't read all of her file yet, but a lot of it was classified..." He admitted.

"She let nineteen of her crew die to save her girlfriend, then informed me that she'd do it again if she had to." Alex couldn't help but get upset over that all over again. It showed in the set of her jaw and a roll of her eyes. "Thinks of herself as a lost cause. We can't afford that sort of undermining. There's enough problems with the ship that we can't let moody senior staffing with questionable judgment be in a position where lives and deaths hang in her hands."

Calvin furrowed his brow and folded his hands on the table, looking back at the PaDD again, with clear conflict. "Harper... who else do you think they're going to give us? If they approve a crew transfer at all?" He asked, flatly. "I don't like this... not at all, but..."

He shook his head and sighed, "She's got to have a psych eval, maybe the Counselor can give us a better perspective?" He offered.

Alex made a face. Williams had already been cleared to active duty by a Starfleet counselor. Why? She had no clue. "Yeah. And if we can't get 'er off ship, we stick her up to her gills in training to remind her of the promises made when she put on her uniform. I can make my presence very known in security if need be, too- which is a nice way of saying I'll dog 'er to make sure that everything stays real smooth."

"That's a lot of extra work on you," Cal replied. "What about her staff? Is her second anyone who can handle the extra load?" He asked.

"Haven't met 'em yet, so I don't know. If she's still over him, it's still an issue unless they've got balls the size of small moons and is willing to run roughshod if need be," fussed the XO.

"On this ship, that's highly likely, and with the XOs backing, they wouldn't need balls of steel. Look, I'll back you, however you want to handle it. I agree, that sort of attitude is a liability," He told her. "I trust your judgment, Harper."

The XO blinked at that as if it wasn't something that she was used to hearing. "Well.. thank you.. I'll make sure that you know everything that's goin' on with it. She's worried about the gossipmongers- and I don't tolerate that- so.. I'll have my work cut out for me. Still feel foolish about trying to build 'er up that tribunals are full of assholes and not to take anyone's guilt before she told me all of that. I can't treat her differently for it, but that does nothin' for my trust in her."

"No, I understand," Cal replied. "We gotta hold out hope for everyone on this ship, Harp. We have to. We're it. We're their last shot. I'm not convinced we can't do it," He told her, honestly.

"Well, we have to." Picking the PADD back up, Alex tucked it to her chest with an imperious toss of her head. "We've got people to prove wrong and a bunch of broken pups to remind that they're wolves. We can whip this.. It's just gonna be kicking boulders uphill to start."

"I got my steel toed boots on... you?" Calvin asked, that Myers twinkle making an appearance.

Alex grinned lopsidedly. "Look at that: I knew you had a little trouble in you. Want me to grab the counselor and start there, or start a check in with the various departments?"

"Start with the counselor, then start hitting the other departments," Calvin replied. "We'll want to make sure that we're ready to fly as soon as possible," Calvin explained.

"Will do, captain. I'll get back t you right soon with my findings," the XO said with a curt nod.

Okay," Calvin said, sinking back into his chair and clasping his fingers together on his chest, giving a very boyish pout toward the door to the meeting room, "Gonna stay here... I'm going to have nightmares about that ready room..." He said, flatly.


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