Blue Ball 5&6 - "A Start of Something New..."

ON: [USS Pegasus, Turbolift 17]

Hannah had a big smile on her face. So far, her time on the ship had gone well. She had met her neighbours, and they seemed nice. Everyone was excited about their arrival at Earth. In actuality, Hannah wasn't particularly fussed - she'd only just left Earth after a far-too-long layover in between ships, but she was looking forward to getting to know some of the crew during the shore leave. They had plans to visit a large nature preserve that afternoon, and Hannah was currently heading down to the quartermaster's, in order to requisition a few last minute supplies. The lift came to a stop on the correct floor, and the doors opened. Hannah's smile faded as the Commanding Officer of the ship's face was revealed by the opening doors. This was not how she had wanted to meet him - she was convinced he would judge her based on her father's name, and she needed time to prepare how best to put her case across. <Plus, my hair's a mess> She mused. <Maybe I'll get lucky and he he won't recognize me...>

Caelen nodded friendly to the yellow shirted Lieutenant Junior Grade that stepped into the lift with him, he was headed to the transporter room. He didn't recognize this member of the crew, although normally one wouldn't find that that weird the Pegasus only had a handful of Lieutenants, "Good evening Lieutenant..." he started to talk "...excited to be back on Earth?" he then asked, if this was a new officer they would've not been on the ship during the epidemic... but on Earth.

"Uh...yes, Sir." Hannah said. "We're visiting the Kenyan Nature Preserve this afternoon." Technically she didn't lie - she'd been off Earth for at least three hours. <Yes, and that'll hold up in front of a Grand Jury> "How about you, Sir?" she said, looking to deflect attention from herself.

"I don't recognize you Lieutenant..." Caelen then said with a smirk, apparently he had missed a red head Lieutenant in a yellow uniform for about three to four weeks "What department are you in?"

"Tactical, Sir." Hannah said. <Please don't ask which position...>

Caelen frowned "there are no female Lieutenants in Tactical..." then it hit him "...unless of course you are Lieutenant Hannah O'Driscoll, our new Chief Tactical" he smirked a bit awaiting a reaction.

Hannah briefly considering claiming to be somebody completely different, but then dismissed it. <It would only cause problems with Personnel, and the paperwork would be a real headache.> She admitted defeat. "Yes, Sir."

Immediately Caelen understood, why she had told him she had been on Pegasus and hoping to avoid this topic "Welcome aboard Lieutenant" he put out a hand and gave a friendly smile.

"Thank you Sir." she said diplomatically, and shook his hand. <Maybe he doesn't know who my Dad is...> she thought, clinging to a last thread of optimism.

"So why the Pegasus?" Caelen then asked, he had read her service record and with that sheet it shouldn't be a problem to join a Galaxy class or a Prometheus "Or is Starfleet still of opinion that all kids Must look like their parents?"

"Look like, act like, sell vital defense secrets to the Romulans, Breen and anyone who'll pay enough - it all seems to be the same to most COs, Sir." Hannah said, unhappily.

"Meh, fathers are overrated..." Caelen said with a smirk, he saw that Hannah wasn't really feeling at ease " me, I know, I'm a Father myself" he laughed a bit at his own comment before recomposing himself a bit "How long have you been in Starfleet Lieutenant?"

"Six years, Sir." Hannah said. "I was on the Polaris from graduation up until three weeks ago."

"Six years?" he arched an eyebrow and looked a bit better at her pips "Polaris... refresh my mind, what class is that?"

"Steamrunner, Sir." <Garbage truck would be another succinct description...>

"ah..." Caelen reacted knowingly " this is actually a step up" he smiled a bit, not wanting to make her feel more uncomfortable then she already was "So you think that after Six years you should still have such an ugly black second pip?" he wanted to know how she felt about the whole thing.

"Well Sir, in all honesty, with my family tree I'm lucky to have two pips on my neck at all. I only got the second one because I saved the life of my CO's superior, and he didn't know who my Dad is."

"And it bugs the hell out of you, right?" Caelen wasn't a counselor but you didn't need to be one to track these kind of emotions.

<No, I like being criminally under-promoted.> Hannah shrugged. "Somewhat, Sir, but there's not much I can do about it."

Now a broad smile appeared on his face "From what I've read about your doings on the Polaris I would say you are a very capable Officer, and despite all the setbacks you continued with your career... am I informed correctly?"

"I could agree with that, Sir." Hannah said, cautiously. <What is going on, here?>

Caelen nodded a bit, raising his hand to his pips, he peeled off one of his Full pips. "Well I don't like discrimination Lieutenant... especially not on officers who are ready willing and able like yourself" he leaned forward and plucked off the hollow pip of Hannah replacing it with the full pip he just got from his collar "How does that feel?" he asked stepping back again.

"One question, Sir - does that make us equal rank, or are you going to replace your pip?"

Caelen smirked a bit before putting the hollow pip on his collar "I'm sorry Lieutenant... not today" the smirk turned to a full smile, he had a feeling Hannah and he would get along rather nicely. The lift came to a hold and the doors opened "This is my stop" he said giving a nod to the freshly promoted Lieutenant.

"Uh...I think my stop was a while back, but I was too busy pretending not to be me to get off." Hannah grinned. "Thank you, Sir - this means a lot to me." <Yeah, at this rate, I should make Commander by my 90th birthday.>

Caelen stepped out of the lift "There is no shame in being who you are Lieutenant... remember that" he nodded before turning around and walking off, next stop would be the Transporter room, homebound.


Cmdr. Caelen LaBrie Commanding Officer USS Pegasus


Lt. Hannah O'Driscoll Chief Tactical Officer USS Pegasus