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Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 106
# 3
02-15-2013, 02:58 PM
Personal Log: "Aboard the Salamanca"
Stardate 90713.37

It's been almost a week since my promotion to Lieutenant Commander and our reassignment to the USS Salamanca. Starfleet's still researching the unusual chroniton signature found on the Roanoke after our mission in the Azure Nebula, and they haven't dared to guess when, or even if, we might have our old ship back. Even if it's cleared by Utopia Planitia, the quadrant's becoming so dangerous that they might start phasing out Miranda class starships altogether. I've placed a request to rechristen our new ship the Roanoke if necessary: vessels may come and go, but her spirit lives on in every ship we call home.

Two months ago I was an ensign fainting at the sight of a Borg cube. It's still crazy to think about how much has changed since then. I'd give up every accolade just to have our old crew back. Captain Taggart, Commander McMary, Ensign Nara...

Nara was the first person I saw when I woke up that day, after I passed out on the bridge. She'd volunteered to help out in sickbay until I woke up. Two hours, and she just joked that the bridge is boring anyway. She tried to talk to me about what happened, but I didn't really want to think about it. I brushed her off and went back to my duties, and told myself we'd catch up later.

...and she's gone now. Everyone's gone.

* * *

But we've done a lot of good since then, and I think they'd be proud of us. We completed the mission and saved Vega Colony from a fleet of Borg ships. And there's Corspa, and the USS Khitomer. Together we saved both our ships, and when Admiral Quinn assigned me to the Roanoke as acting captain, I couldn't have asked for any braver or more steadfast first officer.

Honestly, had our positions been a little different, had it been the Khitomer that lost its senior officers, she could have been promoted to captain every bit as easily as I was. Not that she'd call that a fair trade, any more than I have, but still, she's never the least bit jealous. She says she's gone from ensign to first officer in record time, and that's more than enough for her. Still, I'm glad the ship's in such capable hands when I'm not around.

Then there's Nyzoph. I thought we were lucky to get such a celebrated genius on warp theory right out of the Academy, but the moment he and Corspa met, they practically started an Ushaan right there on the bridge. It turned out that wouldn't have been the first time: they fought one before on Andoria, though neither one wanted to get into the reasons for it. From what I gathered, Corpsa won the battle, and she spared his life for... well, more of those reasons they didn't want to talk about.

Each of them apologized and, without knowing what the other would say, blamed themselves entirely for the incident. That's the only reason I decided to overlook the matter and approve his assignment as chief engineer, but I haven't regretted it. Despite their rivalry they work well together and, strange as it seems, completely trust each other. Whatever their history, I think they were friends much longer than they've been enemies.

* * *

That first meeting on the bridge could have been so much worse, though, if Auslaz hadn't already arrived. I didn't even notice her until then. She'd been working quietly at the helm, never looking up or introducing herself, and I'd nearly forgotten we were expecting another Academy graduate that day, an astrophysicist. She told me later she felt like a stowaway on her own ship, trying to hide so we wouldn't notice her arrival and make a big deal out of it.

But while I was frantically trying to calm Corspa and Nyzoph down, and not doing such a great job at it, she leapt right to her feet with a phaser set to stun and aimed at them both. Our security staff was still on leave at Earth Spacedock, but we never even needed them. One shy young Trill clutching a phaser as she stared down two enraged Andorians, barking at them to stop fighting and listen to their captain - and they did exactly that.

Then she sat down again and went back to quietly running diagnostics on our navigational system. Corspa and Nyzoph didn't say a word. I hardly dared to say a word either. When I called Auslaz into the ready room later, she thought she was in trouble and was bracing herself for anything from a reprimand to a court martial. Her voice practically squeaked when she thanked me for giving her a commendation for quick and decisive action.

Even now, she's busying herself with the readings from a nearby pulsar and trying not to make eye contact with anyone. But I haven't forgotten the bold, assertive officer who leapt to the occasion that day, and we can always count on her to show up again and again during our away missions. Auslaz claims to be scared of her own shadow, but maybe that's exactly what makes her the bravest one among us when she needs to be.

* * *

Umliz Kwam is our chief medical officer. He transferred from K-7 during the quarantine situation, and it was his experience as a Starfleet doctor in the Dominion War that helped us avert a disaster. He's something of a mystery, though. He'd make an El Aurian jealous with the way he can listen to people's problems: I've found myself telling him more about growing up on Earth and wondering where I came from than I've ever told anyone. I guess it comes with the territory when you've been a Vedek.

Even though I'm supposed to check the background of my crew, I felt a little guilty looking up his records. He doesn't really want to talk about himself and believe me, I can appreciate that. Still, his past only makes him more of a mystery. He resigned from Starfleet after the Dominion War and became a Vedek on Bajor, joined the Vedek Assembly - and then he suddenly resigned to reenlist in Stafleet and request a transfer to the USS Roanoke. Well, not the Roanoke exactly, but to "Azera Xi's command."

I haven't brought that up with him, and when I mention how strange his circumstances seem, he just smiles and says they're strange for him too but he lets the Prophets guide him where they will. Prophets, or wormhole aliens, I guess. The day before Kwam resigned from the Vedek Assembly he consulted one of their orbs, the "Orb of Prophecy and Change." The attending Prylars believed he had a vision. I think maybe it was about me.

Should I ask him about it? Probably so, but there's a part of me that doesn't want to know what he might have seen. It's the same part of me that didn't want to listen to Ensign Nara that day, when she tried to tell me about what happened when I fainted on the bridge. That I didn't just faint away: I said something first, something that sounded important. Whatever it was, it's probably listed in my medical files. I haven't looked to find out yet.

* * *

The dreams have been getting worse again, ever since we engaged the Borg fleet in Sirius sector and destroyed Vessel Four of Ten. I'm in a city, an empty city in the middle of a rocky plain that used to be a forest. There's nobody there, but the city isn't in ruins. Everyone just left. I'm alone, but then a shadow sweeps across the buildings like an eclipse. I don't dare look up, I'm afraid it'll see me if I look up. But even without looking, I already know what it means. It's the people from the city. They've come back for me...

And I wake up.

Well anyway, it's probably just stress. The whole crew must be exhausted after all the missions we've been sent on lately, especially the Orion raiders and the planetary surveys in the Hromi Cluster. And don't even get me started on all the chaos Q's been causing back on Earth. Between living snowmen and miniature Q clones, he's been keeping us busier than the Klingons. He greeted me when we first met as his "favorite lieutenant." I don't know whether to be flattered by that, or very afraid.

We have a backlog of routine maintenance to catch up on: we'll set course for Risa so the crew can enjoy some shore leave while we're waiting. That'll also keep us close enough to Earth for two new bridge officers who should be arriving by shuttle later this week. Angel Cragin's the starbase tactical officer who helped us capture the SS Nandi a few weeks back, and Luverala Onploz was part of the very same engineering group that designed the USS Salamanca. I'm looking forward to meeting them both.

Last edited by sparklysoldier; 04-11-2013 at 04:24 PM.