((Deck 1, Captain’s Ready Room, USS Arrow))
Dewitt: How is she still in Starfleet?
It was the genuine question. A question he would have asked free of rage and emotion if he had just been a bystander who read an article in a newspaper.
Shayne: Ah. A good, solid question, but one that, I fear, is irrelevant. No reasonable answer exists, whatever the truth, and I suspect knowing how would only worry us more. So let’s table that particular topic for the time being, and focus on less- forgive me- academic considerations.
Connor raised his eyebrows and looked up from the empty glass in his hands. There was some truth to the Captain's words. To forge a plan for how to cope with the situation, it was irrelevant why she was still there and why she was assigned to the Arrow.
Dewitt: ::slowly nodding:: I guess I can accept that... for the time being. So what are we focussing on
Shayne: Like what the hell we’re going to do with her while she’s aboard.
Another nod. They needed to get ready for her as soon as possible. Whatever that might mean. And Connor had to shake off the anger and self-pity. But he needed the Captain once again to be his guidance. His storming in here had been the proof of that.
No matter where she would be stationed, there had to be something in place to keep her in check. Connor's stomach turned around at the mere thought of what she would be able to accomplish with the access to the Arrow's systems that normal engineering officers had.
Dewitt: I'd say we restrict her access codes to that of a civilian... She has to start at the bottom and show that she can be trusted. No tasks she conducts will be done without the supervision of another officer.
His mind went through his fellow engineering officers, and he had already gone through the discussions that would arise in his mind - no pleasant task. This would be a pretty major shakeup for the crew. And if he was completely honest, the suggestion Connor had just made did not even sound convincing to himself.
Shayne: Oh, how little you must think of me. She’s not starting from the bottom. She’s starting from the very end of the hole she’s dug for herself, and then some. To start, she will be under heavy guard 24 hours a day. She will spend every waking moment not on duty in her quarters- or the brig, depending on the relative enthusiasm of her performance. To be blunt, Connor, I am going to make her life hell in every way I possibly can under the UCJ, and if she handles that well…
The Captain certainly had felt the same feelings that Connor had experienced. But he found a way to turn them into useful determination. Something that Connor had yet to learn. He thought of his talk with Ensing Berry - they had not talked about anger, but about sadness. But maybe he also needed control over his anger.
Shayne stopped mid-sentence, and Connor eagerly waited for him to continue.
Dewitt: If she handles well...?
Shayne took another few moments before he answered.
Shayne… if she handles that well… maybe- maybe- she earns herself a second chance. Maybe.
Connor thought about Shayne's words. Every fiber of his being refused to give that human being another chance. But he also knew that people could change. Ginny's ultimate goal and her intention might be to help Starfleet if one could believe her words. But she needed to reevaluate her means. For all that she accepted during her journey and for everything that she had done, Connor loathed her.
Dewitt: She really needs to do some convincing to even be considered for second chances... I know that anyone should deserve those... but...
He did not even have a good answer to why Ginny did not. But she had violated Connor's deepest beliefs of what Starfleet was and stood for everything that he thought it was not. Maybe that was it. The fact that he trusted her because she had worn the same uniform as he did.
Connor nodded again. They would be taking things one step at a time. And if the situation would ever show that the Captain would ever think about removing her 24-hour detail, Connor would deal with it then.
Dewitt: You're right. ::pause:: The higher I rise through the ranks, the more... ::pausing again, searching for a word:: filthy parts of Starfleet look. I don't particularly like that development.
Dewitt: I guess I am looking more for that Starfleet, that was part of my grandparents' stories when we were sitting next to the Christmas tree. Maybe a naive child's version of what certain parts of it look like today.
Dewitt: Oh, don't get me wrong. I still like being here... I think our missions and exploration are worth living for... I just don't like the politics that seem to play a role in the admiralty.
Connor thought about that for a second longer. He never thought about what life would be like for an admiral, and it only now occurred to him how vastly different it must be to life aboard a starship.