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A Plan For Escape

Posted on Wed Apr 8th, 2020 @ 3:44pm by Captain Abigail Laurens & Lieutenant Alexis Aenera

Mission: Dead Moon
Location: Captain's Ready Room

Alexis swallowed hard as she entered the turbolift to the bridge. She'd sent her message with a tracer to know when it got read and had waited a good fifteen minutes after the tracer sent the confirmation that it HAD been receipted. When no response came, she made the decision on her own to go follow up. For a moment, she had considered just comming the Captain, but that would have been the act of a coward and that was something she wasn't.

Still, her nerves were almost getting the better of her as she keyed the destination, but she stared at the wall instead, forcing herself to distraction by counting the crennelations on the faux-wood bannister until the door slid open and forced her out into the 'public' area of the bridge proper. At that point, there was no stopping her, because indecision could be seen as that same lack of determination and she padded her way over to the Captain's door where she reached out to hit the annunciator, but her finger stopped a fraction of an inch from it. WOULD the Captain want to talk to her after the conference room where she'd basically repudiated her decision? That was the question.

Abigail was intently staring at the PaDD in her hand, only looking up intermittently to glance at the console on her desk as she correlated her information. It was mindless busy work but it was all she could do to distract herself while she waited for Admiral Lockwood to arrive.

"Enter," she called quietly as she distractedly reached for a mug of chai, one which would well and truly have gone quite cold by now. Taking a sip, she winced at the taste as she looked toward the door, setting the mug back on her desk, next to its predecessor. "Lieutenant Aenera," she said quietly. "I'm surprised to see you here. What can I do for you?"

Her first steps into the room were slow and Alexis was careful where she put her feet, almost as if expecting mines in the floor, but then she seemed to throw it to the wind and approached more normally, "Well, ma'am, I saw that you had receipted the message I sent you about um... About half an hour ago-ish? Since it was a pretty time critical message in the scheme of things, I wanted to follow up on it as quickly as possible.."

Abigail fought to push back the caustic nature of her first response. Instead, she offered a smile and an apology. "I'm sorry Lieutenant, as I'm sure you can understand, I've been incredibly busy... I do recall seeing your requests..." she set the PaDD down and looked directly at Alexis.

"I need to know something, Lieutenant, why do you suddenly care so much?" she asked pointedly.

Without asking for permission or even making any hesitant motion towards doing it, Alexis sat on the edge of the chair across from the desk and leaned forward towards Abigail, "Ma'am, there's no 'suddenly' about how much I care. Just because I disagreed with you didn't mean I didn't care. Everything I said was the truth: Being able to study Ts'usugi tech would genuinely be a windfall of information and we would be in the clear legally to do it. I'm all in favor of that, even now."

Alexis exhaled sharply, eyes never leaving Abigail's, "But you made the decision to give the ship back to the Ts'usugi and for all I know that's the best decision to make. And you're my Captain, MY Captain." She repeated, "That means that no matter what, I'm going to do whatever I can to help you to the very best of my ability, even if I don't agree with you. I don't have to agree."

"Just because something is legal it doesn't make it moral or ethical," Abigail replied pointedly. "Betrayal is still betrayal, even if it is done legally."

She shook her head slightly. "Regardless, the decision is made. I did review your suggestions. While I have no doubt that they would likely work, I'll be honest. I don't feel that subterfuge toward Starfleet is entirely appropriate either. I appreciate that you are trying to help, but I would prefer the honest approach. I plan to simply tell them they can't have the ship. I've already contacted the Ts'usugi government and they have deployed a ship to meet us."

"I know there are quite a few Intelligence people who would absolutely love to get their hands on Ts'usugi tech, ma'am, and not all of them would be averse to commandeering that tech by subterfuge or even naked force." Alexis pointed out, "That's why I would still suggest that if we remove the temptation from right under their noses, it would prevent any potential drama from occurring."

Abigail sighed softly. "Lieutenant, I am not going to lie and cheat. At this stage I'm quite sure Admiral Lockwood is doing enough of that for both of us. If or When this all blows up, I will at least be able to stand up and say that I acted morally, ethically and honestly."

The scientist didn't quite know how to take that. On the surface, it sounded all fine and dandy, but it didn't help her own attempt to sooth the roiled waters from the meeting. Her face was that of a poker match, her heart dropping. "Okay, ma'am." She said quietly, "I can respect that and if there's anything I can do to help you, just let me know."

"I do appreciate your efforts Lieutenant," Abigail said quietly. "I assure you, they are duly noted." She paused for a moment. "I don't hold your words against you, if that's what you're concerned about. I am not concerned that you stood up against me. I'm glad you did. You had concerns, you raised them. I would be disappointed if you towed the line and remained silent. But right now, I need to run this my way. For a lot of reasons, but especially because I need to maintain my own honesty and integrity this time. I hope you can understand that."

There was another pause from the commanding officer before she shook her head. "If there's nothing else, Lieutenant, I have a lot I need to deal with right now. I'll let you know what's needed of you when the time comes." She watched in silence as Alexis acknowledged and quietly exited the ready room before turning back to the PaDD's on her desk.


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