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Just a Quick Peak

Posted on 11 Mar 2024 @ 16:47 by Lieutenant Commander Heather Kowal & Senior Chief Petty Officer Hamish McManus

1,634 words; about a 8 minute read

Mission: The Leo
Location: USS Leo
Timeline: SUN 28FEB 2393, 14:20

After having a nice lunch with Loni and catching up on the past few years events, Heather checked into her temporary quarters aboard the station. She'd attempted to change into civilian clothes and had gotten her pants about halfway up when she reversed courses and switched back to uniform. She couldn't do it anymore and would see about checking in on her new command, official or not.

Back in her uniform, she sat at the computer, logged in, and typed in the necessary commands. It wasn't long before she had logged back out and was out the door armed with the knowledge that Leo was currently docked and how to find the ship. She also learned that the ship was temporarily in command of the ship's Operations Chief, Senior Chief McManus.

It didn't take her long to find the docking port where her command was located, disappointed at the lack of windows to see the ship from inside of the station. She was surprised that there was such a lack and couldn't imagine why anyone would do that when designing a station. When she approached the entrance, she came to a podium where two members of the ship's operations department stood armed with a phaser.

"Good morning commander," the senior of the two said, glancing down at the crew manifest and list of expected guests while at the station. He wondered immediately if this was the new commanding officer; pretty, he thought.

"Good morning, Commander Kowal to see Senior Chief McManus, is he aboard?" Heather asked, hopefully.

"Yes ma'am, he is, let me see if he's available," the Petty Officer said.

"Security watch to Senior Chief McManus," the watchstander called over his comm badge.

Main Bridge, USS Leo

The Senior Chief had been toiling away under the vessels main flight control console for hours. He'd been attempting to update the vessels responsiveness to his inputs by around 3%. Not a big number by any means, but a target the Senior Chief would have penned as the acceptable standard back in the Fleet Yards.

The silence of the bridge was broken by the incoming communique. To be honest, it startled McManus more than he would like to admit, as he involuntarily jumped in reaction he thumped his head on the consoles underside, "Oopff, that is gonna leave a feckin' mark." he said in a fairly broad Scottish accent, as he rubbed the underside of the console where we had just made contact, "Nah, it'll buff out."

Hamish McManus, the middled aged Senior Chief pulled himself from under the console and back into the open space of the Bridge. He toss his hyper spanner in the general direction of his toolkit to the right of him. With the opposite hand he reached across his chest for his com badge that, while still pinned to his duty tunic was sitting at a slight angle. He tapped it, opening the communication channel, "McManus here. Go-ahead Petty Officer"

"Senior, we have Lieutenant Commander Kowal, the new captain, looking to make a visit. Do you have time?" there was s lightly crackle to the PA speaker installed in the ceiling panel somewhere. McManus scoped across the ceiling with squinted eyes from his laying position to try and locate it.

McManus clambered, in a fairly undignified way and shot to his feet. "I'll be right down. Please proceed to process the Commander's credentials." Credentials. That was the nice way of telling the security check point to double check that the Commander was in fact who she said she was.

With approval of the Senior Chief they went through the process of requesting permission to board and the usual pomp and circumstance that came with being part of such an organization. She walked through the starboard docking side of the ship and as she passed a door on the right listed as crew mess she realized that they were on Deck 3. She walked a few more feet to the first intersection where she stopped to wait for the Senior Chief to come into view, her gaze alternating between the two corridors.

Hamish exited from one of the vessels few stairwells - who needed turoblifts on a vessel this small - and made his way towards the docking bay. As he walked with toolkit, complete with hyper spanner, in one hand he glanced at this reflection and checked his appearance in one of the Leo's reflective Computer Interface consoles. "Oops," he muttered to himself as he realigned his com badge in the correct direction.

He followed the slight curve of the deck and caught a glimpse of the young woman who would in less than 24 hours take over command of this small ship from him, "Commander." he announced as he started to approach Heather. On arrival he stopped and saluted, placing his toolbox at his feet, "Senior Chief Petty Officer Hamish McManus."

She returned his salute, “nice to meet you. Heather Kowal,” she said. “I hope I’m not keeping you from anything important? I was told I had to wait to take command for tomorrow the admiral is busy. But I figured it couldn’t hurt to come say hello if you’ve got time?”

"Nice to meet you also Ma'am. No, you're not keeping me busy from anything. I was just performing a small update to my bridge console." Hamish responded with a nod, and indicated to suggest they should walk further down the corridor, "Would you like a tour Ma'am?"

"That would be great," Heather said, warmly. "I really appreciate you taking the time to do it."

With the usual formalities out of the way, the COB lead the soon to be Skipper on a detailed tour of the small vessel. They took a route that took them up a deck, through some tight submarine-eqsue corridor and back onto the Bridge.

"Welcome to the Bridge," he spoke as they crossed the threshold. "The Leo's nerve centre. She's not the biggest ship in the Fleet, but she is a beaut."

"I've been getting acquainted with her specs, I'm not going to lie I'm very happy with this assignment," Heather said proudly. "People can have their big ships, I love this sort of small class. We can do a lot." She glanced around the Bridge space as she waited for him to continue on with what he wanted to show her.

McManus walked around the outer bank of consoles on the Starboard side of the bridge and pulled up in line with the centre chair. Hamish gave the Lieutenant Commander an inviting gesture to take a seat. "Ma'am." he gestured.

Heather sat down in the command chair and leaned backward she glanced around the bridge a bit before looking up at the senior chief.

"Do let me know if you'd like any adjustments," he smiled.

"I think it feels good for now, but I'll keep that in mind," she said, looking at the controls that were built into the arms and around the chair. In their secured and standby mode, there wasn't much to see and until she took command officially she wouldn't be able to activate them.

"Looks just like a defiant bridge," she commented, as she looked around again. After a moment she rose from the chair and moved toward the forward console. "I assume the various consoles can assume other functions as needed in an emergency?" she asked. Something like that was imperative on such a small ship where manning a full bridge complement around the clock and in all emergency situations could be difficult.

"It's essentially the same module as the Defiant Class, Ma'am. There is no pre-set configuration on the bridge console. We can configure them in any sequence that you feel would be necessary. There are obviously a few that have natural homes," he turned his body towards the console at the front of the bridge that was set up for Flight Control."

Stepping towards it, he placed his palmed flat on the console, unlocking it in the process. "My personal favourite," the console came to life and quickly configured to his custom set up. One that included both flight control and primary tactical overview.

"This should be the default layout," Heather said, as she looked at the console for a few moments. "It will be important for the helm to have the ability to defend us while we go to red alert. The tactical console should be able to cross-cover operations in a pinch as well," she said, figuring those two consoles would be the primary consoles manned on the bridge.

"Of course, I would expect depending on who is sitting in the center chair they could move to a different console based on their training. It would be my goal to have every first class and above qualified as officer of the deck within a year... that's a tall order but important."

Hamish made a quick mental note of the Commander's aim. "I'll keep that in mind Ma'am."

"Good," Heather said, looking around the bridge. "I'm familiar with the bridge layout the ship has so what's next on the tour?"

"Engineering." This way, he signal towards one of the hatches at the rear of the Command Centre. "Not too far to go."

Together they made the journey from Operations, towards Engineering. They doubled back along the same corridors as before and back down the same Stairwell from earlier. Taking two lefts they entered the Engineering section via its single hatchway. "Welcome to Leo's heart."

"Magnificent," she said, looking around. "I'm not going to lie I'm no Engineer. I know just enough to point and name things so I don't look like a complete fool," Heather admitted to her Senior Chief. "What's next," she asked, as the two moved toward the door.


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