Location: In orbit of Jutus
Speed: Standard Orbit
Shields: Nominal
Hull: Nominal
Systems: All Systems Nominal

Bridging The Gap
Episode 11 - Family Matters
Stardate 73834.3
MD005 0900 hrs

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After the crap hit the fan

Posted on Fri Jul 12th, 2019 @ 9:28am by Captain Tyler Malbrooke & Ensign Dana Wakefield & Lieutenant Paul Michael
Edited on on Fri Jul 12th, 2019 @ 9:33am

Mission: Episode 7 - Home Again
Location: Chief Opeartions Office - Deck 6
Timeline: MD005 1030 hrs

Michael returned to his room.

He was still fuming after that slap down he got from Wakefield.

"The woman is an ass!" he said to no one.

"I'm her 2nd in charge of operations for gods sake, and this is how she treats me???"

He picked up a coffee mug and threw it across the room, shattering it on the wall.

"Well I'm not taking this anymore!"

He sat at his computer and wrote out a request for any ship that needs a good operations man.

When he was done, he sent it to command, with copies for the captain...and Wakefield.
* * *

Dana was still in her office, she took a mouthful of coffee as the computer notified her of a new message, glancing down she could see it was from Lieutenant Michael. 'Didn't take him long.' she thought, taking another sip and pressing several buttons on the display.

"Blah, blah blah, any transfer request to any ship that needs a good operations man." she scoffed 'Surely he hasn't run out of conquests already' she thought as she began to tap out a response to the Captain."

"As head of Operations, I take full responsibility for my department. This morning I held a full departmental meeting to outline the direction that I wish to take the Operations department. However, Lieutenant Michael showed clear insubordination by arriving late and even after the meeting, inviting me to transfer him, before leaving clearly visibly upset. I informed the Lieutenant if he had any grievances to raise these with the Executive Officer, following the appropriate chain of command. Instead, we receive a hastily badly thought out transfer request, In my opinion, the transfer request should be denied and I would certainly be happy to discuss this with Lieutenant Michael and yourself or with Lieutenant Michael and the Executive Officer at your discretion."

Dana sent the message to the Captain, had she really gotten under Paul's skin that much, she was simply trying to hold her department together. She didn't want it to be the talk of the ship. She signed, pondering for a moment, maybe she had been a little harsh on them all, but they were adults at the end of the day and Starfleet Officers, they didn't need to be mollycoddled.

For one brief and fleeting moment, Tyler thought that his crew was seasoned officers and then Sofia handed him the message from his Ops Chief. He sighed and ran his hand through his hair. "Thanks, Sofia." He decided he would head down there himself. Once in the turbolift, he tapped his comm badge. "Lieutenants Wakefield and Michael please meet me in the Operations Officer Malbrooke out." He arrived and walked in, deciding to make pleasantries while he waited for Michael to come in. "Dana how goes everything with getting the systems back online?"

"Ahead of schedule sir, I even joined a damage control team myself to implement some upgrades and repairs it was..." she paused for a moment "An interesting shift," she answered, before turning to the replicator. "Coffee, tea?" she asked as she was about to get herself another drink.

"No, I am okay thanks." Tyler smiled. "It seemed that you and Elen were slave drivers and had everyone out on damage control teams. I was in the jefferies tubes myself." He said with a chuckle. Without asking Tyler took one of the open chairs in front of the desk.

"Coffe black," she said to the replicator as it sprung into action, "And the ship won't repair itself, it was certainly an enlightening shift and if there was gossip that the Chief of Operations was personally helping out, I can not wait to hear the ones about the Captain." she chuckled, picking up the coffee and settling behind her own desk. "I may have been a little heard on them earlier this morning, but things have been slacking recently and normally I would not pry into the personal lives of my subordinates, but when my department is the talk of ship, I had to say something." she proceeded to fill the Captain in on the meeting and the whispers she had heard, before Lieutenant Michael arrived.

Michael stood at the Operations Office door. He pressed the chime and waited.

Tyler was about to acknowledge the chime when he realized where he is. Instead, he motioned for Wakefield to answer the door. "It is your office," He said with a smile.

Dana gently nodded and smiled at the Captain "Come in" she said glancing towards the door, waiting for the young Lieutenant to enter and finally get this situation sorted.

Paul walked in, never looking at Wakefield, came to attention and said to the captain, "Lieutenant Michael, reporting as ordered, sir."

Dana rolled her eyes, he didn't even have the respect to acknowledge her, she was going to offer him a drink, but as he had simply introduced himself to the Captain, she merely picked up her cup and took a sip of her own, strong, black coffee.

Tyler immediately saw what was going on here, and he did not like it one bit. They did not have to like each other but they did have to work together and respect each other. "At ease Lieutenant, have a seat. Let's figure out what is going on here. But first here is the deal, whatever is said here stays here, permission to speak freely is assumed to be given, now I do not want to have to make this an order. But I will if need be, is this understood." Tyler looked at both of them one at a time for acknowledgement.

Paul nodded, "Understood, sir. In fact, I was hoping you'd say that."

Dana sighed, "Aye, sir." she replied nodding her head gently as she took another sip of her coffee, before looking at Paul and then at the Captain, 'Oh this is going to be fun' she thought to herself .

Out of the corner of his eye, he saw Wakefield smirk. She probably told the captain that he was disrespectful and insubordinate. Well...he was going to make sure that the captain hears of her being disrespectful to her staff.

"Right so why don't you tell me what the gorram hell is going on here. I don't give a rat's keister if the two of you hate each other but you have to get respect and work with each other. So, Paul you start..." Tyler went from plesant to anger in thirty seconds. He was not happy about having to hold these kinds of meetings. Especially when he had bigger fish to fry.

"Captain," Paul looked at the captain, "I respect the uniform. I respect the rank. I respect you, sir, because you treat those under your command with dignity and respect. I can't respect people who show no respect for those under her command." He paused. "I was late for the lieutenants last minute staff meaning. I was late, I admit that, but I had just spent 9 hours in engineering helping them isolate a problem. So I was dirty and so was my uniform, so I stopped by my quarters to shower and change...took me all of 5 minutes. Then I ran to her office. Then she says in front of the whole department, that her quote, second in command is a dick, end quote."

Dana shook her head, "I think you missed the part where I asked you and Ensign Robertson to stay and you replied, something along the lines of '"Sure, I've got nothing else planned for the day.' and you are totally giving my quote of you been a dick out of context, you again forgot to mention the part where I said ships rumour is that my second in command is a dick who thinks the ship is his knocking shop." she said, ensuring the full story was out there.

"My personal life is my business, lieutenant. Yes," he turned back to the captain, "I was in a relationship with someone that didn't end well...but at no time did it interfere with my duties. And the fact that you repeated a rumor you heard to the entire staff about me, was unprofessional."

The idea that Tyler himself had just ended a relationship with a member of the crew come flooding to the forefront of his mind. He had to push them back or he would not be able to be the tough Captain that he needed to be at the moment. He ran his hand through his hair, and thought about how he never wanted to treat his crew like children and yet here he was. "Dana, Paul is right about some things here. First of all his personal life, rumors or no rumors are in fact his business and has no place in a staff meeting. That is unless it is affecting his work." Tyler held up his hand before Wakefield could respond and turned toward Paul.

"Paul if you can't keep it in your gorram uniform, then at least have the decorum to keep it out of the ship's rumor. You're right your relationships are your business so make sure that no one else knows about them. Also, while we do appreciate that you wanted to clean yourself up before a meeting. If you had just gotten there on time and if questioned about your look said what you had been doing all would have been okay. In the future if you are going to be late to attend to your grooming then make sure someone knows that you are running a few minutes late." Tyler was on a roll and was not about to stop now. He then held up a hand before Paul could respond and turned back toward Dana.

"As a Department Head I expect more from you. You can keep any comments you have about your staff to yourself. If you would like to address ship's rumor than you can do so in private and not in front of the whole staff. I hope that is all understood." By the end of his speech Tyler was on his feet and pacing the office.

Michael stood when the captain did. "Yes sir!"

Tyler turned toward Dana as he awaited a response from her before continuing. "Paul have a seat I have a tendency to pace when I am thinking. Just one of my idiosyncrasies. No need to stand on ceremony right now."

Dana signed, she looked up at the Captain, "With all due respect, Sir. I did address the issue in private, with those involved, it's not as though I said that in front of the whole department. I will not have a good reputation of Operations dragged through the rumour mill of the ship, simply because you men." she said waiving her hands about "Can't keep in your pants." A little red-faced and embarrassed, she caught her breath, what had she just said, and in front of the Captain as well.

Michael sat back down, then addressed the lieutenant. "On any ship, lieutenant, rumors are going to spread about anyone, mainly because some people can't keep their noses out of someone else's business, or they don't have anything better to do. Yes...I was having a consensual relationship with another member of the crew. There are no regulations against that. And yes, we broke up. And at no time, did my work performance suffer, sir. Maybe, captain, a female officer enters your office a few more times then people think is responsible, before you know it, you're having an affair. You can't stop scuttlebutt aboard a ship."

It seemed that calmer heads were prevailing for the moment. "Dana why don't you tell me what it is exactly you heard. Seeing as the Captain is always the last to hear anything on a starship." Tyler said as he leaned against one of the walls.

"What I heard Sir, is that the Lieutenant is a Dick and a heart breaker and that my new Ensign was dry humping said Lieutenants, ex-girlfriend. Now I know it may not be any of my concern, but when it could affect the inter-professional workings between departments, I tend to get protective. I won't have the operations department name dragged through the mud and I simply implied better discretion of both officers, then we get this ridiculous transfer request." she said, blurting everything out.

"Well, Lieutenant..." Tyler reeled, he never used rank in discussions unless he was angry. She had crossed a line. "...Let's run the list of everything you have done wrong here, shall we? First off you can imply that someone needs to use discretion by simply saying that, in private, not in front of the whole department. I don't care what is said about the department. I bet you would not appreciate it if I had this conversation with you in front of the whole crew compliment, would you? So practice what you preach and have some discretion of your own. Now let us address what you have said previously. Be aware that it takes two to tango, so it is not just men who can't keep it in their proverbial pants. Lastly, in terms of this situation if anyone is going to talk they are going to talk about Paul, not about your whole department. I expect my Senior Staff to handle situations with more decorum and aplomb."

Tyler ran his hand through his hair with one hand on his waist. "Now as to you Lieutenant..." He turned and pointed toward Paul. "...I understand what life is like aboard the ship. Relationships come and relationships go. However, if you cannot keep things between you and whoever you choose this is going to become an issue. The fact that this conversation is happening means that you have not been. This is a Federation starship, not your personal harem. Is this understood?" Tyler expected both of them to respond to the question and gave them each a chance to speak.

Dana felt the rage building in her stomach, this was the first time that she had been chastised by the Captain and daddy would certainly be hearing about it, after all, on any other ship this wouldn't be an issue, she was simply keeping her department in check. Her tempered eyes just glared at the Captain.

"Understood," she muttered before glancing at Paul "My apologies Lieutenant, I was out of order, please accept my sincere apologies, I can see how my actions have to lead to the hasty decision and I hope you will reconsider your transfer request," she said through gritted teeth, before she glanced back at the Captain "Yes, I shall apologise to Ensign Robertson as well," she said, almost sighing.

"I accept your apology, lieutenant." Then Paul looked at the captain. "And I apologize to you as well, captain. Yes, my behavior when I first came on board was....inappropriate. But I think I have changed since then. I have thought about apologizing to the women who I acted boorish to. As far as my transfer request, sir....if you rather me leave, I understand, but I would like to stay here now, sir."

Tyler smirked at the mention of the transfer request. "Funny you mention that, I already denied it..." He chuckled a moment. "Listen the both of you are great officers. If you weren't I wouldn't have you on my ship. Sometimes heads bump and personalities conflict. So me move past it, and move on. I assure you this conversation never happened and no one on the ship, or off the ship will hear of it." Tyler looked Dana in the eyes when he spoke of who would know about their conversations. He wanted her to understand that her father was not in control anymore.

A Joint Post By

Captain Tyler Malbrooke
Commanding Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Dana Wakefield
Chief Operations Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Junior Grade Paul Michael
Assistant Chief Operations Officer, USS Pioneer


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