CCDA HQ - One Small Shift In Respo sibilities, One Giant Shift In Perception (Tag Lt. Gov.)

Posted Sept. 25, 2022, 8:36 a.m. by Captain Eela Dasca (Lt. Governor) (Lindsay B)

Posted by Major General Charles Tenkiller (Vice-Commander, Colonial Customs and Defense Agency) in CCDA HQ - One Small Shift In Respo sibilities, One Giant Shift In Perception (Tag Lt. Gov.)

Posted by Captain Eela Dasca (Lt. Governor) in CCDA HQ - One Small Shift In Respo sibilities, One Giant Shift In Perception (Tag Lt. Gov.)

Posted by Major General Charles Tenkiller (Vice-Commander, Colonial Customs and Defense Agency) in CCDA HQ - One Small Shift In Respo sibilities, One Giant Shift In Perception (Tag Lt. Gov.)
Posted by… suppressed (2) by the Post Ghost! 👻


It was Agent Nords who smiled and spoke first. “Ma’am, our direction from the General are very simple. We are to lead your security and ensure your safety. Your scheduling and appearances are not up to us… that is your purview. Our role is to make sure that you go where you need or want to go safely.” Gam chimed in at that point. “Dont get us wrong, if you want to go somewhere that’ll get you killed,we are definitely going to say something, Captain.” Then V’ter said “And we hope you will take our positions and opinions into account. But we won’t tell you you *can’t go somwwhere.” Mangioni then finished with “We are not your conscious and we are not your parents. We are your security team. We go where you go, and we make sure that you live a long and productive life here on Oed.”

CCDA Security Detail

Eela smiled and nodded. “Good. And yes, your opinions matter greatly. I am trusting you and so if you feel I am putting myself at more risk than is necessary, by all means speak up. Consider that permission to speak freely from this moment on. You are going to be deeply involved in my life and we cannot possibly have the trust required if people feel uncomfortable speaking up.” She cleared her throat a tiny bit. “Especially given that in the past I have, on occasion, disregarded my own safety in situations where lives were at risk. I get that things are very different now, but there is still a part of me that is built around the idea of protecting those that cannot do for it for themselves. Which is kind of hilarious given my situation now.”

She inhaled deeply, taking a few moments to gather her thoughts, completely unhurried. Dasca took her finger tips and tapped her torso. Instead of flesh beneath her blouse, she tapped something that made of a semi-rigid material as she took in all five of them in turn. “Okay, so all cards on the table. Six years ago I was caught in an explosion and thrown backwards into a bulkhead. I fractured three vertebrae in the middle of my back and had a serious brain injury, the latter of which left me in a coma for three months. Nerve conduction studies showed paralysis.” She held her fist out in front of her. “In addition to repairing the nerves as best they could, they did a spinal fusion by replacing the injured portion of my spine with artificial bone. It’s all one piece. Which means I have no flexibility in that portion of my back. And it changes everything from how I stand to how I take strides. But… I can walk, which was never a given.” She spread her fingers. “Normally, there would be discs between each vertebrae that absorb shock. I don’t have that. And furthermore there is consequently more strain on the vertebrae and discs directly above and below the fusion, which cause me pain and might lead to further spinal issues in the future. I wear an antigrav brace that lifts my torso up just enough to take that pressure off. It was malfunctioning lately and between that and galavanting about the three quadrants with the Diplomatic corps, there’s been some disc compression and thus I’ve been in more pain than usual. I move more slowly and stiffly. Stairs suck and I avoid them. My apartment is only a block and half from the Tower, and walking is good for me, but especially on bad pain days, I will opt for an aircar for anything more than a ten minute walk. Any questions before I explain why any of this matters?”

~Eela Dasca, Lt. Gov.

Tenkiller cleared his throat softly and said “We have all reviewed your file, Ma’am. Including medical records. We are aware of your limitations and needs regarding physical mobility. We also are aware that you tend to push yourself past the recommendations of the Fleet Medical staff. But again, we aren’t here to tell you how to live your life. If you want to push yourself too far, that’s up to you. We will pick you up and carry afterwards. We aren’t here to provide critique of how you live, Ma’am.” V’ter looked at her and pointed his index finger in the table top.

“We are just going to ensure that you do.”

CCDA Security Detail

She could tell that they hadn’t considered it yet, though she had no doubt it would have come to mind later. But she wanted to plant the need for planning now, well before it could ever be needed. Eela shook her head. “That’s not my concern.”

Again Dasca took her time formulating her thoughts. “I am combat trained. And while I obviously don’t have the same level of training when it comes to personal protection, I do understand that when push comes to shove, you do anything you need to to keep your charge out of harm’s way. My concern is that in the event that any of you have to take a drastic step to protect me that you will inadvertently cause permanent harm.” Eela swallowed. “Let’s for example say that someone tries to shoot at me in an open area, say Sloan Square. I’m just going about my business, on my way to a meeting and you pick up on a threat or it is communicated. Now, when shots are fired, our instincts and training are to get ourselves and anyone we are protecting as low to the ground and make as small a target as possible. But if I hit the ground with force, combined with the weight of another person on top of me, the chance of injuring my spine again are high.”

Captain Dasca would have been entirely stoic here, but Eela, whose emotional control was no longer always there, couldn’t help her feelings seeping out. “I was told very bluntly that further significant trauma to my spine may not be fixable, that permanent paralysis was likely. I worked so damn hard to get myself on my feet again, and then to be forced to”-she used air quotes-“mutually agree that my physical and mental state was no longer conducive to starship duty. After forty years of service, I could have accepted a desk job and that is a perfectly fine option for some. Hell, my oldest and dearest friend is a Rear Admiral and a damned good administrator. But even he agreed that it was the wrong path for me. Folks, I have lost so much these last few years and I have worked hard to find myself a new path. Yes, by all means, save my life however you need to, but all I am asking is that we go back to the drawing board and revisit how in a crisis, what mobility I have isn’t compromised. Because, to be quite frank, it took everything I had to get me this far and I don’t know that I have the capacity to do it all over again.” She had said all cards on the table and she rarely shied away from difficult conversations.

~Eela Dasca, Lt. Gov

Tenkiller looked at V’ter who shrugged and said “Your medical needs have been a point of discussion. And the scenario you just described was brought up. And unfortunately, there comes a time when you simply have to ask yourself… What level of risk am I willing to take?” Mangioni added “We will do whatever is needed to keep you from harm’s way. But we are not perfect. And to tell you we are would be dishonest. But we are very good at what we do, Captain. And if you work with us, and let us work with you… the level of risk of further injury will be lessened. But it will never be zero.” There was a quiet pause for a long moment and then Tenkiller said “It boils down to this. We’ll scout locations. Monitor comms chatter. Conduct daily briefings to keep current on possible threats and your Itineraries. We’ll stay sharp, observant, and subtle. But if someone tries to harm you, we will respond accordingly. And that may mean taking you to the ground out of the line of fire as fast as possible. And any security detail would do that. And honestly, Ma’am… if that possibility is giving you pause, I should tell you two things as straightforward as I can. One: you can either risk getting hurt again or you can stay at home and in your office, throwing away all these plans to be ‘different’ than your predecessors. Because that’s the only real way to minimize the possibility. And two: if the thought of getting hurt is giving you second thoughts… this probably isn’t the job you should be in.” Gam looked at her and said “When it comes down to it, we’d rather permanently injure you than bury you, Captain.”

CCDA Security Detail

There were plenty of reasonable and measured responses one might expect, that even Eela expected of herself. But how many times had Cory and her argued only to him tell her she was being irrational and unpredictable? That was wasn’t herself. Well, of course she wasn’t. You try waking up after a 3-month coma after a massive brain injury and see how well it all works for you. Tipping her head down, she nodded ever so slowly. “I know.”

So the irrational part of her, the one that was more reckless and explosive, wanted to bolt from this table where five people knew too much and were forcing her to confront painful realities. But the measured part of her that was seasoned and understood people (including herself), had the stronger will-power. It imagined weights holding her down in her seat so that she take a moment to process.

It was that damn painting. This whole meeting right now was precipitated by that painting she bought last night that had deeply shaken her. Here on her third day on the colony, she could use all her psychology training and rationalize her thoughts and feelings, make sense of them, but it didn’t change reality.

Eela lifted her head, her eyes fierce. “I’m not trying to be different. I am different. That was made apparent within minutes of arriving. But you’ll have to forgive me if I’m reeling a bit from not only the mistrust tossed my way constantly, but also the fact that I arrived in the middle of a crisis surrounding government personnel being shot out of the sky. So I’m a little on edge. And since you all read my file, you’ll also know that that the brain injury I had caused personality changes. I know I’m not being rational about this, but it doesn’t have to make sense to any of you. I can’t help how I feel, but it’s like you said, you’re going to do your jobs to best of your ability and I’m going to work with you and not intentionally do anything that makes that harder than necessary. But understanding the mentality of the woman you’re protecting is important right? So, here’s a truth, as irrational as it might be, that I have struggled with for the last six years, that if anyone at this table gets, it might be those of you here who once wore the same uniform as me.”

Eela inhaled and breathed it out in as measured a way as possible. “I’m a starship captain who didn’t go down with her ship. I woke up from a coma to find out that I had lost thirty-two percent of my crew. We had a crew complement of seven-fifty. You do the math.” She sighed. “I’ve moved on, but I will never get over it. And all I’m trying to do right now is try to reclaim a shred of dignity.” She had been the poster-child for a Starfleet Captain. But something Starfleet was terrible at was helping people transition when they no longer met the grade. Not every command individual was meant to rise to become the brass, nor did everyone want to be. Eela had never wanted to be. And as murky and messy a process as it was, she had come to Oed to find out if she still that that special something that made her so damned good at being a leader. There was a good chance that answer was a resounding no, but her brain injury hadn’t taken away her stubbornness and persistence. She was determined to defy the odds and change the answer to a Hell, Yes, whether people around her liked it or not.

~Eela Dasca, Lt. Gov.

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