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Team Building

Posted on Tue Jan 18th, 2022 @ 8:45am by Lieutenant Commander Jason Myers & Linza (Lin) Esni

Mission: Lower Decks
Location: Security Office
Timeline: Before The Chaos Of 'Double Bind'

It was perfect.

Coffee, and a cronut. Fresh from the replicator and on the bosses desk. The perfect start to the day, according to Keth's research. And he wanted to make a good first impression. Which had meant experimenting with the replicator to find the right combination of breakfast foodstuff.

So if the cronut didn't work there were griddle cakes, pancakes, flapjacks, crumpets, muffins, toast, bagels, beignet, red bean buns, sweet rolls, cinnamon rolls, croissants, pain-au chocolate, baguettes, sliced bread, bran muffins, blueberry muffins.

And, just in case he was a waffle man, there were waffles. Dear, sweet, GOD...there were waffles. Justice has its desserts.

The security office looked like a bake sale had been held to whip up resources to buy a new brig cell. But there was one thing missing: the coffee, which was in a cup, had come from a carafe. Actually several, all different blends.

The cup was full.

The carafes were not.

But Keth was.

Keth could smell time.

He was staring at a crack in one of the ceiling tiles. How long had it been there? What was its story? Had it like the Buddha sought enlightenment, only to find that it too had to carry water and chop wood in all of its incarnations? Was it a messenger, free from the palace but not yet free from the chains of its responsibilities?

What was its story?

There'd been a meeting, apparently? Honestly, Lin was surprised she was asked to come to it. It wasn't like she was a high ranking officer on the team. Hell, she wasn't even ranked at all. She was just a crewman in the eyes of Starfleet, and barely even that. But, she heard there would be breakfast, and she couldn't pass that up.

Coming in, she saw Keth, well, who she assumed was Keth, and a lot of breakfast food. Going for the coffee first, Linza then started to look around at all the food. "Hmm...where's the bacon?"

And like that, the Buddha closed the door to enlightenment in Keth's face. Cursing him, so that his next life was that of a goat. A goat that would be struck a hundred times by lighting before it died. Maybe the seven carafes of coffee were having an adverse affect on his personality, but we'll never know.

"...I forgot the bacon." Keth said in a very small voice, that sidled out of his teeth and into a puddle on the floor. "Without the bacon, there is no breakfast, without breakfast we cannot proceed with the day. That means security is at its lowest ebb on this day, because there is no bacon, Because I forgot the bacon. The captain is at risk! The ship! The crew!"

His voice has raised slightly, towards the end. Surely no one on the deck above had heard him. Probably.

"Oh lord, what's the Captain gotten herself into now?" Jason asked, having overheard the commotion, and... Was that a cronut?

"Commander Myers!" Keth said, his ears perking up as he stalked to the replicator. "You are just in time. Computer, Bacon."

And again, as Keth well knew, the computer made a little 'nu-huh' noise. Apparently, when the options were many for an item it was automatically programmed not to just replicate all things under the heading of 'Bacon'. But Keth was a master of the matter recombinator.

"Computer, Bacon: option one through ten." He said, and began to pull plates out of the service slot. "OOOH! Candied bacon, never tried that before. Have either of you? Don't tell me, I want the surprise."

Keth said all of this as he put the plates down and tried some of the candied bacon. He purred happily, the deep sort of thrumming sound you'd expect from a lawn mower.

"Anyway," Keth said as he licked his lips. "I have been assigned to the Astrea as your new Assistant Chief of Security! I mean some call it a deputy position, and if you want to call me a deputy I'm totally fine with that. You are, after all the boss. King. Empteror. Defacto monarch in charge as it were."

"King? I rather like that. Wonder if the Captain will let me use that..." Jason said with a chuckle.

Grabbing some of the bacon to add to her plate, Linza smirked. "Those are some interesting titles there. Not that I'll be using them, Lieutenant."

"I'm sure the Captain would let you use that title!" Keth said with an eager nod that should have done damage to his spine. "I just really want to make the right first impression, because sometimes people look at my service jacket first and make all the wrong sort of impressions from it. Not that there is a word of a lie in that file, it's just...not all...accurate...from a certain point of view."

"Then you don't want to look at my record, Lieutenant." Lin shook her head and found a seat.

"Oh but I did! And you are just the best at what you do! You do it, and you get results," Keth said, nodding with such vigour there was a buzz of static electricity building up on the top of his head.

Linza couldn't help but laugh as she found a place to set her food down near where she'd sat. "See, now I know you didn't read my record. Else, you wouldn't have said that."

"I read the highlights," Keth said. "Did you know your report has the word 'but' written in its seventy-seven times? But the word competant only once.?"

"Do you see a rank on me?" Lin finally pointed to her collar, which was completely devoid of any rank. "I've likely been in Starfleet longer than you, maybe, as I ranked up young. Honestly, I made Lieutenant Commander before screwing up royally. Now I'm just lucky I'm not locked up in a brig somewhere and was given a second chance. Doubt I'll ever get a rank back."

"Not with that kind of attitude!" Keth said in a disposition so sunny it might have given someone skin cancer. "I'll not stop until you've made a rank worthy of your station!"

Linza put up a hand mid-sip of coffee, then put the mug down. "I'm happy where I am. With what I did, they'll not give me a rank. I was lucky the captain vouched for me and I was able to have the position that I do."

"I...see..." Keth said, attaching the mental post-it-note of 'Bribery' to the Captians image in his mind palace. More like a mind tenement which was about to be condemned but it was there. But we'll save that for another plot.

"It is what it is, I don't mind just being a security peon at this point." Linza sat back. "So...why did you actually want us here, Keth? Or was it just to feed us?"

"Do you need feeding?" Keth eyes brows shot up. "Oh Gord, I mean. Okay, it was pretty amazing the first time I saw it as well, but just in case I want you to prepare yourself."

Keth took two steps over to an illuminated slot in the wall.

"This is a matter-energy converter," Keth said in the tones of reverence some holy orders have towards the middle fingers of long-dead saints. "It can turn energy into any form of matter programmed into it. No more starvation, for anyone! I know, sounds implausible, but where did you think all of this came from?"

Keth swept his hand over the breakfast platter, an act that ended with a bear claw attached to his Huanni paw.

"And it tastes real too!" Keth said, as the pastry met a fate far worse than death. "Not like the kibble I use to have grown up before the Federation found us. It hasn't even got any plastics or filler in it."

Groaning, Lin just kept eating. "So what is the actual reason for the meeting, Lieutenant?"

A: A team-building exercise to ensure good synergy among colleagues.
B: The replicator has a lot of buttons and Keth had poor impulse control.

Keth answered by sliding a whole waffle into his mouth.

"I would say... C - Hunger?" Myers said, observing their conversation.

"You can read my mind?!" Keth said. Or he tried to say, as the partly masticated waffle made a bid to escape in a flurry of whipped cream and maple syrup bits. In the right circumstance, Keth and a breakfast buffet lineup could be considered a form of riot control.

Linza smirked at Myers' comment. "That one. Plus, I suppose it is a good idea to meet up an know who is who."

"Exactly!" Keth said.

"Well, anything to know about me is in my file, and everyone would have access at this point, especially this team." Lin shrugged slightly. "But that is because I'm here thanks to the Captain. I think they are keeping an eye on me though."

Keth would remember that.


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