Literary Challenge #20 : Saying Goodbye
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Farewell to Thaddeus Parker
05-29-2012, 09:19 PM
Captain's log stardate (Two weeks after the Odyssey was launched)
It seems like only yesterday I took command of one of Starfleet's finest Sovereign Class Assault Cruisers. When I first took command, we were in dry dock receiving a nacelle refit so she could cruise at warp 9.97 without the feeling as though the ship were flying apart. It was a rough time for the crew. Without being underway, they were left to find menial tasks while the Starbase one engineers did all the real work. I had been told good things about them. That under times of stress, they really came together and were capable of doing what needed to be done to get the job done. This was hard to believe since most of their underway work was being taken care of. At the end of each week at quarters, each department head presented a list of work that each one of them had accomplished. It was less than impressive to say the least. I finally decided to take a leap of faith and put everyone on shore leave until the refit was complete at which time they would have one week to make sure the ship was ready. It was probably one of the most risky, yet one of the best decisions I think I made. When I gave them a week to be one-hundred percent ready to explore and fight, they only needed three days.
After two days of warp trials we were finally underway to explore the galaxy and capable of holding warp 9.97. I was very impressed with everyone's hard work to make what seemed impossible, possible. I thought my chief engineer, Dion was joking when she said I gave them more than enough time. Guess she had the last laugh.
There is almost too much for just one log entry to contain, but I will recall some highlights. We had just finished up dealing with a rogue Changeling in the Alpha Trianguli Sector and were on our way home, when Admiral Quinn contacted me at an unsettling hour. Our turn was here. Many of the crew knew that as a Sovereign class ship the day was going to come when we would be assigned to Battle Group Omega in the Delta Quadrant. I'll never forget the look on Dralon's face, my helmsman at the time, when I told him to set a course for the Delta Quadrant Transwarp Gate. That following morning, everyone was very quiet. I took one of my usual strolls through the ship, only this time I was making sure I hit just about every deck. The mood was quiet. Most of the crew didn't have much to say. We had no time to prepare for this. Crewman Riblet had a hard time adjusting to the fact that he wasn't going to spend one last night on Risa with his wife and Ensign Mayes was unsure if he should contact his brother or just go into Borg space and hope he came out fully human and unassimilated. Starfleet had told us that we would have at least a month to prepare and give our crew enough time to spend with their friends and family and prepare for what awaited us in the Delta Quadrant. I remember arguing with Quinn to no end about it just hours earlier. He managed to convince me by pulling the "Voyager card" and reminded me that other Starlfeet ships have been pulled into the Delta quadrant without sufficient time to prepare. I knew the real reason we were going so abruptly. Starfleet was losing that war and needed ships right away.
Once we crossed thousands of light years in only a few short minutes, it took a few seconds for reality to settle. Just because we had arrived here so quick and easy, didn't mean we were going back anytime soon. We passed by what appeared to be another Sovereign class ship, or at least what was left of one. The starboard nacelle was almost entirely gone and most of the saucer section had been blown off in many different areas. It seemed that the ship had been pieced back together using Borg hull plating. You would almost think that the entire ship had been assimilated. I later read up on the log entries of the ship. Apparently they were apart of an attack force that had been mostly wiped out and when they escaped, their navigation computer had been disabled. Essentially they ran away from the fight not knowing where they were going and had finally made their way back to Battle Group Omega after many months of scavenging what little Borg parts and technology they could to keep their ship together. Least to say it was a somewhat demoralizing sight to see.
My crew and I would soon learn that out here all we really had were each other. The ships and crews we were fighting with one day could easily be destroyed or assimilated the next. We couldn't make any attachments to anyone outside our ship. It would have been too much to handle. We spent nine months in the h*ll hole called the Delta Quadrant, three months passed our original tour. In some way we owe the Iconians a little thanks for distracting the Borg. Because of their interference, Starfleet was able to gain a good foothold in the Delta Quadrant and we soon found ourselves on our way back home, to Earth.
Which brings me to this day. A day unlike any I have had while commanding a starship. Though Dralon isn't among us and therefore I no longer have to break to him yet another piece of bad news, I still must walk out on that bridge tomorrow and tell the rest of the crew who made it through that Thaddeus Parker has served her time and we are all about to disembark on our own separate ways. This isn't a change of command where I get to introduce a new Captain and help ease him into my place. This is the end of a journey for us all. Though a few of my senior staff will be joining me on my next command, most of the men and women, brothers and sisters I served with in the h*llish nine months will be moving on to other things. They will have to find a new home with new commands and I will have to try and be who I was before my experience in the Delta Quadrant. I hope the rest of the crew can deal with this a little easier than me, but there is nothing I can do.
In closing I will say that I do look forward to the new adventures that await me on this new class of starship. I look forward to the new adventures with the new faces... maybe that is the feeling I should pass to the rest of the crew. Fair Winds Thaddeus Parker. You were a good ship commanded by one of the toughest crews in Starfleet. You will be missed
END LOG ENTRY