Posted by Captain John Tiberius Glen (Captain) in Who Knows What the Future Holds
As the tiny shuttle docked in the shuttle bay the landing was smooth. The trip had been anything but. There was constant turbulence, so much that Verity was forced to assess the situation. “Is everything okay?” She asked the shuttle pilot. The man turned and looked at her with a wide grin, “Yep. Everything is A-OK.” As Verity stared at him, he felt compelled to continue speaking, “Sorry about the rough trip. We hit some remnants of a solar storm. It’s clearing up though. I’ll have you on the Merrimack in no time.”
Verity nodded but she could help but think, Can you at least try not kill me on my first day back to work?
Now that she was safely back on the Merrimack she thanked the pilot as she hoisted her Starfleet duffle on her shoulder. It was heavier than when she left because she packed the five books in it.
After she exited the shuttle, she headed straight for the Captain’s office. When she arrived she rang the chime and waited to be invited in so she could give him an update on her brief departure.
Glen immediately invited Verity in. She wouldn’t have been aware, but shortly after her own shuttle had left, a second left with Joe Milligan and Stanley Wong, and now the Merrimack was left without a First Officer. Here, standing right in front of the Captain, was an officer with all the skills and professional experience that were relevant to the position of Number One. Not only that, but the Captain had already managed to fill the position of CSO while she had been gone, unaware that she would be coming straight back again.
“Apparently, you have a new nickname on the lower decks,” Glen told her. “In the Fantail Lounge, and amongst the crew in the Science Labs on Deck 10, they have started calling you ‘Boomerang’!” Glen laughed.
Verity laughed too. She appreciated the Captain’s humor and its one of the reasons she decided to come back to the Merrimack and not go anywhere else.
“I’m sorry to break this to you, but I’ve already filled the position of CSO while you were gone. I’m afraid that you no longer have a job!” Glen told Verity, then he laughed again.
Verity’s face showed a noticeable frown as Captain Glen told her she no longer had a job. How could he replace her so fast?
“However, I have found you to be a great team player, and I really feel like that’s one skill that really sets you apart from many other officers I’ve had aboard the Merrimack. So, I’d like to offer you the position of Number One instead. I appreciate that you lack experience in Command, but you more than make up for that in enthusiasm. Ask any officer here and I’ve always been a Captain who has given officers a chance. I’ve always found that an enthusiastic but inexperienced officer to be head and shoulders above someone who is qualified but carries a negative attitude. The job is really one of human resources, to which you are certainly well suited, and eventually I’d expect you to ensure higher efficiencies and employee performance. What do you say? Will you be my new second in command?”
Her eyes widened as she realized that he was promoting her to first officer on the Merrimack. “I …um…” she stammered her words, “Ye..yes. Of course sir!” The excitement of the promotion was apparent in her voice and her face as she showed a huge smile, however, she paused and a look of concern showed on her face as she asked, “But, what happened to Lieutenant Commander Milligan? Is he okay?”
Glen replied, “The couple of hours after Joe had been infected by the thing in his ear, had turned into a couple of days, and then even more, and for him to get better, Major Stanley Wong told me that he clearly needed specialist treatment than wasn’t available aboard the Merrimack.”
Glen elucidated further, “It’s a sad story… Joe had begun to have memories that may or may not have been true, such as his grandmother saying, ‘A dollop of whiskey will make you frisky,’ whenever someone had gotten ill. He had thought on that phrase a lot. It began to bother him that no one had ever asked the old girl precisely what a ‘dollop’ might be. Or, what measuring system the ‘dollop’ came from? He had gotten out his last bottles of Irish whiskey. He claimed that it was only one half full bottle. He reasoned to himself that if he didn’t know precisely what a ‘dollop’ was, he was sure that a half bottle with nothing to mix it with might be just about right to be a dollop.”
Glen was sad as he told the tale. “There had been more than one half bottle of Irish whiskey involved. This is how it was that Joe had managed to lose a ‘smidgeon of time,’ as he called it. It was a rather long time actually, and during a lot of that time he sat pondering on some very strange ideas, such as why no one really taught these ‘dollop’ measurements? He was growing more irritable being cooped up and drinking excessively. The Professor agreed to accompany him home.”
Upon hearing Glen’s account, it was evident to Verity that Joe’s condition had worsened significantly since being infected by the mysterious entity in his ear. The progression of his illness from a couple of hours to several days indicated a serious medical concern. It seemed that Major Stanley Wong, recognizing the severity of Joe’s situation, concluded that the specialist treatment required for his recovery was not available on the Merrimack. She wouldn’t miss Stanley but she would miss Joe.
“I am sad I didn’t get to say goodbye. It almost feels traitorous to replace him.” The key word here was almost. Verity needed a job on the Merrimack and she’d hit the jackpot by being prompted to First Officer. What was that saying her grandmother used to say When one door closed, another one opened. Although this now meant that now she couldn’t flirt with Hunter as his superior officer. That would be highly inappropriate. “In any case, you can count on me, sir. I will follow your lead and be a good first officer. I can’t thank you enough for this opportunity”
“It won’t be easy stepping up from CSO,” Glen replied. “But hopefully, the difficulties and hindrances will be countered by the joy of success, over failure and obstacles.”
- Glen, CO
Verity nodded, appreciating Glen’s encouraging words. “I understand that the transition won’t be seamless, but I’m ready to face the challenges head-on. I’ve always been driven by the desire to succeed, and I won’t let failure or obstacles deter me.”
She took a moment to reflect on her previous role as Chief Science Officer (CSO) on the Merrimack. She couldn’t help but feel a tinge of sadness at leaving her previous role behind. Verity’s sadness slowly transformed into a sense of purpose. She was ready to embrace her new position, leaving behind the regrets of missed goodbyes and focusing on the opportunities ahead. She was determined to make her mark as the First Officer of the Merrimack, and she was grateful for Glen’s belief in her.
“So Captain, I take it my new role is effective immediately and I will undergo on the job training? What is the first task you would have me me do?”
V. Aphelion, First Officer
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