The docking went fairly smoothly and the process of boarding was eerily similar for those who could remember. As the ship “docked”, the base extended two comparatively long tubes… perhaps 20-30 meters. The crew had to walk through two separate tubes, each seemed capable of being detached at any time and each having it’s own independent power system for life support, which at least meant if it was detached somehow, and if it didn’t explosively decompress the people in the tubes could live a while.
Each tube had scanners which detected power sources, hard straight items of longer than 4 inches of any material like metal, plastic, or polymer and illuminated them with a light for easy identification.
“On a scale of one to ten how safe is this fun house catwalk,” Kelly asked anyone and no one in general about the long tube they were using to disembark the Atlantis. It was preferable to her to beam over directly however Jacen, who conveniently remained on the Atlantis, thought using thier system was better than the bam I am here method of materializing in the middle of the space. While nothing about these people suggested they were out to harm the crew, Kelly could not help but think about how easy it would be to detach the ends and trap them in the tube.
When they reached the door at the end of the tube several officers in uniforms with purple and gold piping stood with scanning devices and the locations of each identified power source or weapon was already recorded. .
“Hello I,” Kelly started before the civil servant interrupted her greeting.
The officer spoke in a pattered drone, if they had said this a million times. “Welcome to Base Five, we take no legal responsibility for person or property and you are obligated to abide by the rules of the Base or be faced with punishment. Please register all powered items and weapons. To be clear, actions like Murder, Assault, Kidnapping and Theft, are all crimes here among several others… for a full list please refer to the pamphlet on the wall.” They gestured to a handout holder.. like a spinning gift card display rack you’d find in a store.
“Well it’s comforting to know civil servants approach thier job with all the vim and vigor that do back home,” Kelly said to the officer from her ship next to her.
The men and women in blue and gold all carried sidearms, small weapons no larger than a .38 pistol, but how powerful they were was unknown. There was the occasional security officer in the back, away from the docking port with an ‘assault’ weapon eyeing the away teams cautiously.
There was a very stately gentleman waited. He looked over, “Captain Bordeaux?” He questioned as he looked about, there was another older officer in the Purple and Gold, but he had the bearing, demeanor and age, that suggested that he was a higher ranking officer of the security forces.
“Commander Rose,” Kelly replied. She had no idea if the voice belonged to the Endorian she had been speaking to or if the man before her was about to take her into custody. Using the only name she knew was a calculated move. If it wasn’t Rose, then Kelly would ask for the officer if necessary. If it was Rose, then she did not make the mistake of assuming the man was just some security officer. Moving forward she extended her hand, “Captain Bordeaux,” she acknowledged his question. “My crew has just completed the security checkpoint. I am at your disposal. What is the next step?”
Captain Kelly Bordeaux
“This time perhaps you promise not to shoot up my base.” He said with much less hostility than the sentence seemed to carry. He seemed more tired… or annoyed than anything else.
“It was a grave misunderstanding on our part and we deeply appreciate you permitting us to make atonement, Commander Rose,” Kelly replied. Atonement was one of those political words that fit nicely into many categories being a synonym for reparations. The meaning was clear that you were in some form going to pay for something but didn’t have the feel of complete submission or throw yourself on the mercy of the court. Atonement gave wiggle room in the world of verbal negotiations.
The older man looked back and forth for a moment, “Ah, no Captain, this is Lieutenant Commander Kyle, commander of base security forces. I am Counselor Reese your advocate for the trial, unless you have one of your own. The Base Commander has used his authority as leader of the sector to act as the Judge for this particular trial.” He shrugged, “That could be very good or very bad. Commanders don’t have to follow precedents so they are wild cards. They also don’t have to answer to civilian authorities which gives them more latitude if they follow the interest of the military motivations.”
“Well as long as he is not responding to the T-130 overlords,” Kelly said with a dry sense of humor. While there was no way anyone here had seen the newest OMAP action-adventure holomovie Termaborg: Terror is Not just Skin Deep, Kelly rather enjoyed the movie along with the main character who seemed to share his name with both the base commander and her counselor. She also saw it as a sign things were finally going to work out in the Atlantis’ favor.
In any other situation, military motivations were not the thing you wanted to hear, however, it gave them some more wiggle room. Civilian courts were driven by pure penetrance as evidenced by the rhyme if you can’t do the time don’t commit the crime. Dropping all sense of humor Kelly reached out to shake Reese’s hand. “Thank you, Counselor Reese. It will be a pleasure to work with you. So where do we go from here?”
Captain Kelly Bordeaux
Trainor felt a sense of cautiousness from those around him, which was expected given the Atlantis’s past reputation. Tenzing felt a bit alarmed when he heard that the base commander would have full autonomy over the verdict, which as Counselor Reese said, could go either way for them. Lieutenant Commander Trainor remained silent for the moment while he surveyed the beings in the area, hoping to read off their emotions on what could be instore for the crew.
“Yes,” he said cautiously. “Lets get the distasteful business behind us. The Commander has asked to see him in his private mess prior to the trial.” He smiled slightly. “An ex-parte communication - wholly illegal in a normal trial. Possibly a time to negotiate a settlement prior to trial? I think this might be quite positive. If you play your cards right.” Reese suggested hopefully.
Kyle said nothing but continued to frown slightly. He knew the commander much better than the counselor and might have additional knowledge, if so he wasn’t sharing. “It’s this way.” He gestured and started walking, somehow leading the way but not getting in front of the Captain. Two of the security personal in the welcome area followed at a slight distance. They clearly were escorting, not directly behind them, but a soft follow.
Kelly nodded and followed Kyle as he walked. Pondering what he had shared, Kelly decided to start to make some assumptions and suggestions. Looking over at her men, she knew they were listening and would chime in when needed or when they wanted. “So what kinds of things might help me negotiate my case with the Commander? Please don’t be so transparent and ask us to give you all our weapons and technology. Any ideas on what he might be looking for? Get your stylus’ out guys and start making a list.”
Kelly Bordeaux CO
Tenzing chuckled to himself at the Captain’s brazen attitude towards her situation. It appeared things were looking in their favor, as long as Bordeaux could find something worth bribing the Base Commander with. The Operations Manager could sense the pair of security officers following them at a distance, though he was only able to assume there was two based on their heightened alertness.
OOC: Were the replies accidentally left on the bridge thread?
OOC: I think so .. pasting Luke’s post in here ..
OOC: Anyone that wants to be in the away team please introduce yourself to Rose and Hammond. That way we have an idea of who is where. Right now we know the XO is on the bridge and Kelly and Tenzig are on Base Five. ~ Kate
“I couldn’t imagine,” he looked towards Kyle who might have known better, but Kyle continued to say very little. Counselor Reese looked with a side long glance. “The Commander isn’t known to be dishonest. I suspect it will be a fair offer. At least to him.”
The group ended at an office in a completely different wing of the Base. It had to be at least 300 meters away and four decks off. If someone had outstanding spatial awareness they might be able to work their way back, but fortunately for all considered there were numerous signs and colors that made their location easy.
The room itself was fairly large, it was clear that there was a second and perhaps a third section to the room. However the front, was some sort of living room with a table several chairs and couches and two officers dressed similarly. “Ah Captain,” said one, “So nice to finally meet you. I’m Commander Hammond, Base Five.” He gestured at a fairly lean, but tall women. “Commander Rose.” She nodded.
His tone was friendly but his face didn’t match the tone, it was simply neutral.
“Commander Hammond, thank you so much for meeting with us,” Kelly extended her hand in greeting.
He looked at her hand for a moment, “Of course,” his voice gained a rich baritone. He displayed the signs of a slightly older officer as his waist was larger than it should be, or would be if he were 30 or 40. “Can I offer you a drink? I presume you consume fermented fruits… it doesn’t have a very high alcohol content…” He glanced at the XO. “Are you a doctor? My medical officer says its compatible to your system.”
“Thank you. I that would be much appreciated.” Kelly wasn’t sure if drinking booze was a good sign or not. Some of her best diplomatic successes had been around a bottle of wine; however for every ying there was a yang that showed her greatest disasters in life had settled around a bottle of booze. She would only take polite sips for now until the negotiations for her release were in place.
“This is also Commanders Tenzing and Nash and Lt. O’Farrell,” Kelly introduced the men next to her. She did not indicate if they were or were not the XO. Jen was safely on the bridge of the Altantis. It was only sound tactical planning that prevented her from bringing Jen with her. The Andorian was a brilliant Marine and if anyone had the expertise to take on an alien starbase with only one ship, it would be her XO. Kelly just hoped it would not come to that.
“Commander, Lieutenant.” Hammond acknowledged both of them… “Wine as well, I assume.” Hammond knew the rule, if the Captain said yes, the crew said yes. Likewise if the Captain said no…
In quick enough order, Hammond had served everyone aside from the two riflemen who waited a moment then stepped out of the room.
Looking at Rose, Kelly nodded, smiled, and extended her hand in greeting. “It is a pleasure putting a face with a name Commander. Your help was greatly appreciated in not only getting us here but with your assistance with The Darkness.”
Captain Kelly Bordeaux
“I didn’t do much, just pointed you in the right direction and kept my distance.” That was a fair description of what they did.
“Well you gentle nudge was appreciated.” Kelly did not give any further attention to the kept my distance part. Maybe it was because these people truly did give the Darkness wide berth. That had to be the reason behind the comment yet if it was, it concerned her some. When the Borg were discovered, they tore through the Federation like a knife through butter. Planetary coalitions against them became rare when the true power of the Borg was determined. After uncounted lives throughout the galaxy were lost to the conquest, the Borg were finally defeated. While there was no reason to assume the Darkness had anything to do with the Borg the principle was similar. There was a powerful enemy and those encountering it learned the best thing to do was avoid it rather than take it head on. Maybe that was their way in: Help these people figure out a way to combat the Darkness…once Kelly and her crew found out a way to do that.
Commander Rose’s face was lean with clear but modest make up that somehow made her eyes seem bright. She smiled warmly as she stepped slightly closer to Kelly as she shook her hand. “The pleasure is mine Captain.” Her hand wasn’t soft but was warm and lingered a moment or two too long along with her eye contact.
Oh..okay this is a lot more eye contact and touching Kelly thought but continued to smile and return it in the same fashion. Maybe it was because it was two female officers meeting and some sort of comradery thing. It happened from time to time. At least this woman wasn’t a hugger. Admiral Belata Zeel back at the Federation was a hugger and so at least this greeting was better then having to remember not to stiffen up like one was twelve being hugged by the crazy Aunt with the five o’clock shadow every time one met her.
“If we don’t end up at war after this meeting, I’d like to extend an offer of a meal. I would suggest staying on Base Five as they have many more food options, or if you feel more comfortable you can come to my ship, there other things there that might make your stay more enjoyable.” She wasn’t quite ‘close’ but she seemed to radiate warmth somehow.
“Well we plan to be on our best behavior this time around now that we clearly understand the cultural and political aspects of your Base. I do hope that means we will be able to get a table for a dinner reservation after this is done on Base Five so your offer would greatly be appreciated,” Kelly nodded with a smile. Having one ally that was politically appropriate was a step in the right direction. Although the saying any help is better than no help was true, right now the only help in the Altantis’ corner was a possible pirate coalition and The Great One who took off five minutes after he dumped the Atlantis wherever this was.
“Ariel,” Hammond said quickly, “there certainly won’t be a war happening.” He now forced a warmer smile, “She’s joking… the Commander’s sense of humor is… unique.”
“Again really glad we are all on the no war chapter of the book The Atlantis comes to Base Five,” Kelly joked back dryly, “and as my granddaddy always says never trust someone who doesn’t have a sense of humor.” Only years of command training prevented Kelly from uttering the next question of so shall we begin. At least for now the meeting was going in the right direction. They were planning a dinner which suggested one of two things. Either a public dinner was going to be Kelly’s last meal before she was shipped off or the two people were confident whatever they were about to ask for would be something Kelly would be willing to part with for her freedom.
Kelly Bordeaux CO
“Your Granddaddy probably was very wise.” He stared at Commander Rose while saying this.
Ariel smiled slightly and deferentially towards Hammond and moved slightly away from Boudreaux. At least nominally they had the same rank, but for some reason she acted like Hammond was the superior officer. The both had golden bars on their collar.. the same number… same thickness. There were three dots overlaying his bars, she had only a single… perhaps that was the sign of a higher grade.
OOC: I stuck Ray, Dave, and Jen Ward in this thread BUT if any of you wish to be on the bridge thread instead just post you are returning to the ship. If anyone WANTS to be in this thread just post to the scene as you have always been here and we will roll with that too. ~ Kate
Tenzing momentarily stepped up within earshot of the Captain. “Given this may be your last supper, would you like to sit at the middle, Captain?” The Operations Chief laughed, before taking stepping back again. He felt the mood in the room beginning to lighten up, though it would go without saying both sides still had their guard up. Tenzing knew he was supposed to be more mature about the situation, but he couldn’t help but make jokes. He was starting to think Q had given him a 19 year old brain as well, though he could confirm that part later when they were back aboard the Atlantis.
“Perhaps Commander we can get this distasteful business behind us.” Reese said after a sip of his wine. “I’ve spoken to Captain Bordeaux has been very remorseful for the misunderstand earlier.” His tone was soothing, but it only seemed to annoy Hammond.
“Mmmhmm,” Hammond started. He picked up a box, it seemed unremarkable. “Your beam weapon.” He opened in, and there it was… one Federation phaser. It actually looked to be in perfect condition. Perhaps too perfect, it was clean and shined… certainly not something that had been hidden away. “We found it several hours after you departed.” He closed the box and handed it to her. It was now fully in her possession.
“Its something we want to keep.” He looked at her. “If you give it to us, I’ll consider this whole business closed.”
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