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Beginning of Tomorrow

Posted on Sat Jun 13th, 2015 @ 1:34am by Captain Kathleen O'Shea & Commander Jey Cleh & Commander Eliana Masters & Commander Andrew Matheson & Lieutenant Commander Ewo'tOst Menkova & Lieutenant Carl Baumann & Ensign Arianna D'Tal

Mission: Paradise Lost
Location: Starbase 80: Conference Room P71E-Planetary Operations

Kathleen was already there as they arrived, three of the wall-screens activated but blank at the moment, and a stack of PADDS by her seat. Kathleen had only been back on station less than twenty-four hours, but they had been busy hours. Things were happening fast now, and they had to stay ahead of the flood.

"The transporter would have been faster but Baumann wanted to bring the Star Fish to the Shuttle repair facility, she had not been badly damaged but she was a bit 'roughed up' to be sure. He strode along the corridors with his Star Fleet adapted uniform, a flight suit style jumpsuit with the Science colors of the tunic, more befitting the Submersible Operations.

He had a PADD in hand when he strode into the Conference Room, noting the Commodore he clicked his heels and gave a Military Bow his ancestor would have respected.

Commodore O'Shea." HE met her gaze. "Lieutenant Carl Baumann of the Science Department, Specialist in oceanic exploration and Commander of the Deep Submersion Vehicle Beagle at your service ma'am." He had a strong German accent as he spoke but clear enough to be readily understood. "It is a pleasure to be here, we have already gotten the Lady wet and had an anomolous encounter." He grinned. "I believe we will fit in well if you do not mind me saying?"

Kathleen smiled as she walked over to Baumann to shake his hand. "It is an absolute pleasure to finally meet you, Lieutenant. I've heard a lot about your teams work over the last couple of years. Now with everything that has transpired over the last week, I'm especially glad that you are with us now."

"It iz my honor Ma'am." Baumann Nod. "It iz good dat you know of our vork." He smiled. "I am at your service of course."

"Hello everyone," Masters waved as she walked through the door, realizing after the fact that those assembled currently only numbered three. "Well, almost everyone. Commodore, it is good to see you again. Hopefully you're not getting sick of seeing me."

Kathleen walked over and gave Eliana a quick hug. "Oh I don't think I am sick of you quite yet. I hope your transition back to station life hasn't been too difficult. We could always pitch you a tent in a holo-program of a camp on Orion's Slave Moon."

"Don't tempt a girl like that," Masters deadpanned, making her way towards the replicator in search of a cup of coffee. As she walked, she tried to wrack her brain and recall a time where she had met the other face in the room. Not finding any success, Ellie gave up. A three century long memory was a curse and a blessing, all wrapped up into a fifty-seven kilogram package.

"I don't think we've met. I'm Eliana Masters, it's very nice to meet you," she extended a hand towards the unknown stranger.

"Carl Baumann." He accepted the hand and clicked his heels together as a man should while he kissed the hand as a proper gentleman should a lady. "Da pleasure iz mine." His strong German accent echoed.

"Ah, Herr Baumann, always a pleasure to be in the presence of a gentleman," Masters smiled brightly. The introduction was a refreshing change from the mundanity of everyday conversation. Then again, Eliana was far from the reticent El Aurian archetype.

At the appointed time Vonny activated the communicator and appeared seated at the conference table, she stood, testing the range of coverage. "Excuse my abrupt appearance and I dont mean to appear rude but i have about two foot range of movement. But it's a pleasure to meet you all. Commodore O'Shea, Commander Menkova reporting in as requested."

Andrew entered the conference room with his own assortment of padds and a black diplomatic attache case. Those people who were familiar with him would have noticed varying degrees of fatigue and dark emotion etched into his eyes, but he had a mostly believable smile on his face as he walked in. He looked around, saw the commodore and captain, and saluted as he headed for anyplace he could set the padds down. "Greetings, everyone. Commander Andrew Matheson, reporting as requested."

Eliana narrowly avoided bumping into Andrew with a cup of coffee in hand, a collision that would have ended poorly for one or both of them. Holding back profanity, she regained control of her beverage and moved to sit down. One minor detail caught her attention before she did, however.

"Oh. My. Word. It's so shiny! I want one too!" Masters exclaimed, moving until her sight-line focused on Matheson's collar. "Congratulations Commander! I hadn't heard yet."

He chuckled. "Thank you, Commander. I'm still getting used to it myself. And with recent diplomatic developments, I haven't had much opportunity to spread the word on that front." He bit back most of a yawn, but a tiny bit of one escaped anyway. "Sorry, it's certainly not the company."

"No need to apologize. We'll have a celebration some time," Eliana replied in turn. "You know, when things are quieter, you'll have to teach me a few tricks about negotiating and I'll reciprocate the favor with some flying tricks. Amaze and impress your friends with fantastic maneuvers," Masters gestured, using her hands to channel her inner street-artist.

Andrew nodded. "Sounds like a plan. Though you have the first lesson down pretty well. Keep people focused where you want them and it's easier to steer the conversation." He gestured to her hand movements. "It's worked on stage for centuries."

"Which is how I managed to distract you long enough to pull that third pip off of your collar," Masters quipped as she took a sip of joe. Then, without missing a beat, she finished the joke and drained her coffee all in one fell swoop.

"Made ya look," she laughed.

He couldn't help himself; he checked to make sure all three pips were still there and laughed. It was good to have something to honestly enjoy.

Kathleen came over and gave Andrew a hug as well. "It's good to see you, my friend. I trust you have settled back in without issue?" A soft chuckle. "Hell, you never even got a chance to really look around when you got here. You must still be discovering things."

Andrew returned the hug with a smile. "Definitely the latter category. I made sure the diplomatic ships were still here, verified my quarters actually had a pillow, and got right down to stress-testing the replicators. They do in fact make acceptable caffeinated beverages." He lowered his voice. "That personal matter from back home has been taken care of as well, for better or worse."

Kathleen nodded at the last bit of news. "If you need to talk, you know where to find me. Rosaleen should be back soon from Naurdra. The Corp's team will be there for another week or so re-activating the facilities there. That will make a good forward defensive base in case the Protectorate decides to do something stupid. A lot of folks have defected and are headed our way. I believe we can hold our own if necessary."

Andrew referred to the PADD in his hand. "Thank you for that; once I get things a bit more established I'll probably take you up on that. The Naurdra facility will make life a lot easier once we can activate and hold it." He hadn't heard about that in his recent projects; there were definitely projects that said location would help out with. "I've spoken with my people, and everyone has a general idea of what we need to do out here. I can tell you about it now if you want, but that will make me work harder trying not to bore you during the meeting."

"Did I miss something? Naurdra facility?" Masters raised the question.

"We have a fairly large facility there that was designed as a forward base of operations during the Kzin conflict, but it was never actually used. After the war it was closed up and mothballed. It has room for around four hundred fighters plus support, and a full support facility including medical and Marine personnel. It also has a very advanced ELINT center. We just have to put all of the pieces in place to make it operational."

"You know, just as you started talking about it, I remembered what was in the briefing that we were sent. It holds stuff that flies. I like it already," Eliana smiled in response.

Still tearing the extent and range of the imager on her end and in the current conference room. Ewo'tOst took a few more steps forward at the mention of the Naurdra facility and it's capabilities grabbed her attention. "I believe that will prove extremely useful, I would like to explore the posabilties of linking it to the three temporary post that we are setting up." She interjected before introducing herself. "Commander's, Lieutenant, I don't believe we've met at least not properly. I'm Lieutenant Commander Menkova. "

Andrew turned to Vonny, sidestepping to make room for her in the group. "I don't believe we have, Commander. Andrew Matheson, chief diplomatic officer among other hats." He noticed the lack of emotional presence of the commander. As his brain went to chalk that up, he noticed the holoemitters in the room and realized that could explain things.

"Commander Menkova, I'm Commander Masters, director of flight operations and second officer. I've heard many good things about you from Lieutenant Carver from your time on the Chesapeake. It's a pleasure to finally make your acquaintance."

Baumann watched the people mingle as he was not entirely sure of his purpose at the moment; he was a lowly Lieutenant in charge of Aquadic Explorations and commanded a submersible?

He was more of the type to watch and observe to see if he could catch some attention?

Andrew noticed that he hadn't in fact talked with anyone in the room with lieutenant pips, despite Menkova's comment. Looking around, he saw Baumann standing off to the side. With a smile and another sidestep, he conveyed an unspoken invitation to come over and be sociable.

"So, while we wait for the others," Ellie decided that the conversation needed more inclusivity as she always did, whether it was actually needed or not. "Allow me to say how glad I am to see everyone together on the station. It's so much nicer to be able to put a face to a name instead of idly scrolling through the manifest all the time. That said, I'm going to ask everyone extremely cheesy questions to pass the time. You have been warned."

As she spoke, Masters returned the coffee mug back to the replicator whilst she scanned around the room, daring anyone to make eye contact long enough to fall as her first victim, so to speak. That playful little grin was on full display. Her gaze finally settled on Baumann, though the question she asked was open for anyone to take.

"Alright, so you have a dinner table booked at the best restaurant you can think of. You can invite three guests from any time period, living or dead. Who makes your ultimate dinner party?"

"Jacques Cousteau, Charles Darwin and Bruce Springsteen." Baumann said with a grin. "Everyone needs some party entertainment."

"An explorer, a naturalist, and an entertainer if I'm not mistaken," Masters nodded in approval. "I wouldn't mind being a fly on the wall for that dinner conversation. I'd probably have to sub one of them out for a pilot though. Maybe Amelia Earhart if we're going to stick with Terran history." Eliana stopped as the door opened to admit another attendee.

Stacy entered the room carrying two satchels full of PADDS and an assortment of other tools of the trade. She already knew what the meeting was about, having had a dinner meeting with the Commodore the previous evening. She also knew that she was leaving right after this session to start surveying. A lot of work was ahead of them...more so than most had yet to realize. She sat her satchels down on a chair in the corner of the room, and walked over to where the main group was gathered. "Sorry I'm late. I had a few tasks that needed finished before this."

Kathleen smiled at the young woman. For somebody who had jumped into a roll out of necessity that was completely new to them, Stacy had done exceedingly well. "Absolutely no problem, Lieutenant. Eliana was keeping us...entertained while we waited."

"I suppose, but 'tis time to go to work," Masters nodded. Her body language quietened and her posture straightened, but the smile still remained.

As everybody made their way to their seats, Kathleen walked up to the podium off to the right of the desk.The lights dimmed, and the screens all came to life. Each showed a different image dominated by large bodies of water surrounding lush islands and small continents. Over the center of the conference table, a holo image of a planet image that put the individual pieces together.

"Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Renaras. This lovely planet is located in our neighbor system Fenera. Almost four-fifths of the planet is covered by water. Polar ice caps...smaller than Earth, and a very temperate climate. Lots of natural animal and plant life. It is not inhabited. Atmosphere is a bit more Oxygen rich than Sol, and gravity is a touch lighter." She walked to the head of the table. "And if a proper agreement can be worked out, it has been offered to us. A lot of folks are headed our way from what I have heard, and they are going to need someplace besides a station to exist on. The Feneran's have given us permission to make surveys to see if it will serve our needs, then meet them at the bargaining table to hammer out a deal. preamble today. Hit me with your raw thoughts."

Andrew unconsciously winced as his schedule for the day disintegrated. "I have a diplomatic team responsible for every system in our region of influence; feed us data and we'll make things happen. Potential obstacles..." He took a swig of his tea. "If the flora or fauna displays sentience, the Prime Directive is a potential problem. I presume the Fenerans are at least on neutral terms with us since they're making this offer, so extending the negotiations for Renaras into a broader discussion between our organization and the Fenerans should be manageable. And knowing this region, this move will provoke at least one other regional power who won't like the perceived increase in power the Fenerans get by allying to us, so I'll get the relevant diplomatic teams going once we get the go order." He took another swig of tea. "The inference I got from the previous... regional surveys... was that any other M-class planets were either much more remote, in sway of cultures that would be antagonistic to our organization, or both, so this sounds good by comparison."

"The location's proximety to Taranok allows for us to easily support any operation on the planet, or within the Fenera System. The Fenera and Stratkas are partners in both Commerce and Defense. I have a hint at what they are looking for from us, which is mainly along the defense and patrol lines, although there are a few projects they wouldn't mind using the Corp's for as well." Kathleen moved back over to the podium and leaned on it. "I will add that the Fenerans were strong partners with the Federation during the Kzin War when they did not need to be, so the foundation of mutual trust is already in place."

"I don't want to jump ahead of the negotiation stage, but flying a couple of survey teams isn't going to be very difficult. However, it's going to be a job to get enough equipment moved over in order to start building an entire civilization from scratch. Don't get me wrong, I think we can do it, but it's going to be hard work," Eliana chimed in, looking between the images and the gathered officers at the table. "If we could manage to get a starship to oversee things, I think that would be a big help. What are we talking about as far as numbers go? We performed a minor miracle on Taranok, but I'm assuming this is going to be a much, much larger job."

Kathleen smiled at Eliana. "You assume correctly. And getting a starship or two as support won't be that difficult. We have several headed our way, but had to make a few stops first." That was a touchy that Kathleen was glad she was not dealing with. It was amazing how smoothly the transition had occurred for 80. "Also...addressing another of your points Andrew, the Prime Directive is not going to be as strong a guiding influence for us as it was before. I'm not going to let a pre-warp civilization be destroyed by an asteroid just because they can't fly to the stars just yet." She reached down and changed the image on the main viewscreen. It showed one of the larger land masses surrounded by ocean. "Now something that I need to throw out there as well for discussion. With the limited land area available on the planet, we are going to be looking at maximizing it's use, which will necessitate the development of underwater facilities. Actually, underwater cities." She turned and smiled at Carl. "You and the Beagle are going to be a bit busy for a while, my friend."

"Da Beagle has three inflatable habitat tents, basically von room but but fifty meters square base in a type of Dome, like explorer use on planetary exploration." Baumann put in. Suitable to have the foundations able to be laid and da modular sections inserted in a modular fashion." He continued. 'Ve also have all the pods and work suits that should be able to survey the site and establish the construction site. I figure two for your settlements and the last for survey site." He suggested.

Seemingly content with the briefing thus far, Masters had but one thing to add.

"Commodore, just let me know what needs to go where and we'll make it happen. Meanwhile, we'll start preparing for the influx of ships heading our way. I'm sure the marshals are just going to love reshuffling the deck every time one of the ships in the back needs to get out of the superstructure," Eliana laughed as she made a few notes on her PADD. She could already imagine the profanity that would be inaudibly uttered over the days to come.

A moment later, the door opened again, and Arianna D'Tal entered the room. Unlike how she had appeared when they had arrived back at the station, her hair was a bit shorter, and was now dyed red. She stood there in awkward silence, as the others noticed her. Finally, she approached Kathleen, handing the woman a PADD. "I apologize for the intrusion, Commodore." She said simply. "Since the Captain is currently busy in sickbay dealing with straightening things up, and handling some injuries, she is unable to report to the meeting. She sent me to provide this medical department report, and to stand in her place for the meeting... If that is ok?"

A warm smile told her all she needed to know. "You are always welcome. Just pick an empty seat anywhere." She gave Ariana time to sit, then turned back to the group. "OK...continue, please."

"First surveys should be from low orbit I reckon. That way we will be able to get maximum penetration from the subsurface scans and know exactly what sort of surfaces were dealing with. I think pulling Science and Corps' O Engies to interpret the data would be an idea." Ewo'tOst said considering how best to go about the task, what resource and person allocation a juste mobs would be needed. More that that the prospect of aiding the building of a colony was quite appealing. "Starting wise for the prospective colony, a smaller version of our offices on Stratkas would be a good base line and build from there. Downwards into the sea apparently."

"That is the idea, but it's going to need to be quite a bit larger than our planetary complex." Kathleen replied.

Arianna took in the images on the view screens, and the holographic display, and put the pieces together rather quickly based on the small bit of conversation she'd just heard. "What about defense?" She asked. "If we are to build a colony, or some type of station at this location, we have to be able to defend it from orbital attacks, or invasion." She added, her recent experiences on Taranok IV fueling her response.

"There are plenty of options available. We have access to some Guardian Platforms for starters, and the amount of fighter craft alone that we are beginning to collect will easily allow for an effective patrol schedule." She paused for a moment, taking a sip of water. "But we are a long way from even the necessity of any type of defense plan at this time. But it is an appropriate question and does bear more brainstorming."

Andrew chipped back in. "We can't totally neglect ground-based civilian shelter in this. Claustrophobia and aquaphobia are personal and potentially cultural concerns depending on which Federation races might be coming out here. Horta and Saurians immediately come to mind."

"We are not going to neglect on-ground facilities, but we need to maximize the use of land areas, as they are much smaller than we are acclimated to." Kathleen paused for a brief moment before continuing. "And, there is another small issue. As far as is known, there is not a fresh water aquifer on the planet. But understand that there has also never been any wells drilled on the surface either."

"The initial survey can verify the presence or lack of any aquifer. Considering the planet's vast oceans, what about desalination facilities? I don't know if we have a system capable of handling the demand. Well, what I mean is, even if it doesn't provide everything we need, it would be another valuable source of water." Masters was slightly outside of her area of expertise, but the logic seemed solid enough to her.

As the representative for Captain Cleh, Arianna decided to speak up on the medical side of things. "I believe the Captain would suggest that a medical facility be one of the first things to be built." She said simply. "Treating serious medical injuries, or emergencies would be next to impossible without such facilities."

"We do have desalination equipment and we have a CoE team on station. I'm sure they'll have some ting up their sleeves. " Ewo'tOst stated. "If we start an above ground set up on a rocky headland, that should give us the flexibility to utilize the land space and provide an easy transition to any subsurface or underwater facilities. Construction Workers barracks areas could be extended to provide living areas, for prospective colonists. Desalination set up could be incorporated into a transition between land and sea areas. An infirmary will be needed for any workers, if we site that so expansion of its facilities is possible, will that suffice?"

"It's a strong start. We will have to plan this carefully though. A small community this month could easily end up a small city in six."

"And undoubtedly, that city would need plenty of resources to handle the demand." Arianna chimed in without missing a beat. While normally most 'children' weren't as apt to take the kind of initiative she was showing here, her recent experiences on Taranok IV had been enough to show her what it meant to have responsibilities. "Including a militia or police force, medical facilities, and transportation, all accessible to workers and colonists alike."

Ewo'tOst was presently surprised at the point that the young woman tabled. Overtaken by curiosity she commended Arianna. "All very good areas to pay attention to, well observed Petty Officer, born from experience I suspect, on Taronok IV maybe?" She then made an offer. "I'd be interested in hearing your observations and opinions and combining them into a workable framework, would you be willing to meet with me after this briefing, it will have be be by comm channel I'm afraid." Glancing over to O'Shea she queried." Unless we can snag a holo suite for a time? Also Commodore I have teams on the ground at three locations and we have begun conducting our reviews. It may give options for the near future. "

Arianna hesitated, her Vulcan composure faltering for only a moment at the mention of Taranok IV. She took a moment to regain her composure, before she finally replied to Ewo'tOst. "I would not be opposed to such a meeting, Commander Menkova." she said simply. While she used her Vulcan training to keep her emotions in check, the true extent of the trauma she endured on Taranok IV would eventually surface. "Thank you for the compliment."

"Shall we say an hour after the conclusion of this briefing." She suggested before circling back to the point of information. "All this needs to be based of accurate information of course. I have a Polaris with a Recon module in flight to <> that could be diverted and make a start at least. But a starship would provide a better platform provided we have one available."

Arianna simply nodded, before returning her attention back to Kathleen. This secondary meeting would be an interesting one for her, and maybe it would end up giving her more responsibility... but she wasn't sure she wanted it.

Andrew sat quietly as the conversation continued to unfold, making notes on his PADD as things came up that he would need to talk to specific people about. Other than the little detail that Reneras wasn't yet confirmed to be workable or available, this was going remarkably smoothly. As he started looking ahead at assignments he would have to make, he subconsciously rubbed at his temples.

"So, at this stage we should be good to get the preliminaries started." Kathleen shut down the holo imager and screens. "Let's start getting everything prepped for the initial survey. I want the Beagle to head out with the first team. Also...we have a new toy available for this mission." Kathleen typed in a few commands into the terminal, then reactivated the screens again. A very interesting vehicle's schematics and images appeared on them. "This is the newly developed Morningstar PEV...Planetary Expedition Vehicle. It is the perfect platform for this mission."

Taking a few moments to glance at the specs, but her eyes kept running back to the image of the ground craft, and a smile spread across her features. "Impressive vehicle, it will certainly speed up land based exploratory surveys. I'd like to get to grips with that soon enough. Speaking of which, Commodore O'Shea do you want me to divert to Renaras from my current location on Koinatt or stay put?"

"Get to a point where they can proceed without you and meet the forward team on Renaras as soon as you can." Kathleen replied.

Arianna sat taking notes on the things she felt would be relevant to Captain Cleh, including her own comments, and the situation presented at the meeting. "Would you like the Captain to send a few of the medical personnel along with the first group?" She asked Kathleen, looking up from the PADD she was holding.

"Definitely. Check out a Titan and whatever modules you need. And if you need more, just send me the list and I will get it assigned to your team."

"Yes Commodore." Arianna replied, as she entered the given information into her PaDD. When she made the recommendation, she would also recommend that she herself not be added to the teams. She'd had enough time dealing with extreme danger recently, and figured she'd be safest on the station for now.

It was time for the starbase's crew to build a city from scratch. Among the assembled personnel was one who had lived long enough to remember a time when such a project would have been impossible. Anyone ambitious enough to propose such an idea would have been dismissed with the rest of the mentally unwell, but here they were, discussing the logistics behind accomplishing what would have been considered a miracle a cosmic blink of an eye ago.

Now, it was just another day at the office.

"We'll be ready to accommodate and transport whatever is necessary to Reneras."

Looking up from his PADD, Andrew finished his to-do list update. "I'll have the Feneran diplomatic team ready to go when you're ready to ship out. I'd rather start sorting out the negotiation details sooner rather than later."

Commander, you have a free hand in your negotiations. Just don't give the Station away."

"Understood, ma'am. I'll try not to let them get interested in your desk either." Andrew made one last note on his PADD and finished his tea.

Kathleen shut down the imaging systems. "So that's the plan for now. OK...anybody else have anything to add?" When no one else spoke up, she gave them all a smile. "Ok then. Dismissed."

OOC - Add in signatures please! :)

Joint Post by

Commodore Kathleen O'Shea
Commanding Officer
Starbase 80

Commander Eliana Masters
Director of Flight Operations
Second Officer
Starbase 80

Commander Andrew Matheson
Chief Diplomatic Officer
Starbase 80

PO1 Arianna D'Tal
Executive Officer's Yeoman
Academy Cadet
Starbase 80

Lieutenant Commander Evie'tOst Menkova
Chief Planetary Operations Officer
Starbase 80

Lieutenant Stacy Pierce
Director-Starfleet Corps of Engineers
Starbase 80

Lieutenant Carl Baumann
Assistant Chief Science Officer
Starbase 80


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