((Observation Lounge, Deck One, USS Atlantis))
((Day Twenty-Six of Shore Leave))
Much to Esa’s annoyance, her trip to the planet’s surface had been cut short before they’d even had a chance to leave the ship. She’d promised to make it up to Andrew at a later date though, having dragged him out of his room for no reason. Still, she was pleased that the outfit she’d replicated fit him so well. The uniform measurements in the replicator database had given her an advantage, but style? That was a completely different matter. Fortunately she’d managed to hit that nail on the head, or so she thought. Now, however, she was back in uniform and one of the last to arrive at a rather cramped observation lounge. The recent new additions to the senior staff had definitely bulked out the usual briefings that the Captain held. She stood to the side closest to the bridge access door, leaning slightly against the wall. Eventually, the Captain spoke up.
Thoran: Before we begin, please help yourself to the refreshments. ::He waited a moment before continuing.:: I know you are all in the process of enjoying shore leave so I won’t take up too much of your time.
There was a brief shuffle as people tended to their needs, before the room settled down again.
Thoran: I am sure you are all wondering why the Atlantis had been recalled to Earth and sadly it was not for us to enjoy the sights. ::his eyes fell to the table:: The Atlantis is to remain here for the time being for a resupply and minor refit.
Refits were not an uncommon occurrence – especially to ships that were nearing a 5 year anniversary of a major retrofit. Atlantis had been done in 2392 with the majority of the rest of the Intrepid-Class fleet.
Serala: Okay, a refit. That’s fine. Bit of stand-down time for most while the Engineers get to have a bunch of fun. How long are we planning to be here?
Lephi: I didn't sign up for Starfleet to sit in dry dock for ages. Is there anything we can do to speed up our return?
Kiax: I’m sure the Corps of Engineers will welcome any assistance we can render, but it’s usually best if we keep out of their way.
She was no stranger to how stressful a time refits could be. Her father had often come home after a shift working on the initial Intrepid-Class development in a less than stellar mood.
Thoran: A skeleton crew will remain with the ship whilst the majority of us return to the Par’tha Expanse.
McKnight: I don't understand, sir. Return in what? The Atlantis is our ship? Are we all being reassigned?
Snow: Are we being loaned a ship while the Atlantis undergoes the refit?
Logan: To DS26 ?. I do hope there’s transport It's a very long way to walk.
The response was more or less what Esa had expected. They were all perfectly valid concerns. Atlantis, to her crew, was home. To be sent back out into the field without the vessel in which they’d built their lives was a strange feeling to say the least.
The Captain walked round the table and keyed the wall display. It responded by displaying a ship. An Akira-Class ship. Esa couldn’t say she was overly familiar with the design, but she’d certainly read about the class during her studies.
Thoran: May I present the USS Chin’toka, an updated Akira class, first of its kind. And our new home. :: beat :: Starfleet Command has been following the evolving situation in the Expanse and is assigning the Chin’toka as the Federation’s flagship for the region. It is hoped that such a move will cement the Federation’s place in the region and reassure its allies of the commitment. Questions?
oO New home… Fresh start… Oo
A series of conflicting emotions rolled over her. On the one hand, she was devastated to be leaving Atlantis behind. She had such a bold, fearless legacy – one that Esa wished to continue in the Expanse. On the other, she was thrilled to be getting away from the baggage and heartache she felt roaming its corridors. And from a purely professional point of view, a state of the art starships boasting cutting edge technology was not an assignment to be sniffed at.
th’Koro: After the Atlantis’ refit, will it join us again in the Expanse?
Serala: I have a ton of questions, but for now I will just settle with, what is the time table here?
Raga: The entire crew is being reassigned? That explains the mystery. I..::He looked to Serala, then to the Captain.::
Lephi: When can we expect the manifest for the skeleton crew to be posted, to know where we're going?
Logan: I hope she does follow us back the Atlantis has been there pretty much since the beginning.
Kiax: ::Smiling slightly:: I’m sure she’ll be back with a vengeance, Kurt.
Levinson: How long do we have for packing?
Thoran: The engineers would like to begin work on the Atlantis as soon as possible. As such we will be moving to the Chin’toka within the week, so start packing.
She couldn’t help but kick herself. She’d spent much of the past month assigning crew quarters on Atlantis. Now she’d have to put together a task-force sized army of personnel to reassign 500 new sets.
Thoran: To celebrate the commissioning of the Chin’toka, a party is being held tomorrow evening on board the Chin’toka. A number of senior officers are expected to be in attendance so attire will be dress whites.
oO Dress whites, eh? Oo
It had certainly been a while since she’d dug hers out of the wardrobe. She’d probably need to replicate a new outfit.
Serala: By your command, rekkhai.
Raga: Yes, sir. I imagine a lot of the crew, myself included, are going to have a difficult time leaving the ship. This...is our home. Winds know, she’s seen us through a lot, and a lot of good Atlanteans memories will always be a part of her. Those…::He took on a sombre tone:: who never left and can never leave her.
Raga: ::smiles softly:: Once and Atlantean…::He stated stoically::
McKnight: Always, my friend. ::He pats Raga on the back.::
Rosek: ::clears her throat softly:: Will there be a christening ceremony, sir, or has that already been taken care of?
Rosek: ::pauses:: There’s somewhat of a tradition from what I’ve read where on some new ships her Chief Engineer christens the engine room prior to the maiden voyage. With your permission, sir, I’d like to do something similar for my team. It might boost morale and make the transition a little bit easier. Keep the focus on the positive things.
Lephi: I'm more than happy to help out in any way needed, sir.
Rosek: ::nods:: I agree. ::glances at the others:: I know some of you have been with the Atlantis for a long time. I’ve been through enough reassignments to have an idea of what you’re feeling. I believe the more we do to build this into a celebration, the less focus there will be on leaving the Atlantis behind.
Levinson: Would the celebration be open for the new arrivals as well?
Lephi: A celebration sounds good to me.
Snow: Me too.
Kiax: I suppose it’d do us some good…
The truth was, Esa didn’t really feel like celebrating at all. She was too busy thinking about the logistical nightmare that she’d be having to co-ordinate with the teams on the station.
Logan: Well if it's a party you want then I'm sure the Marines can be trusted to lead the way.
Kiax: I can vouch for that. They’re a force to be reckoned with when it comes to drinking their fellow officers under the table.
She was, of course, referring to the party that she’d been dragged along to by Kurt, who’d conveniently not shown up, despite her attempts to persuade him otherwise.
Lieutenant Esa Kiax
Assistant Chief Operations Officer
USS Atlantis – NCC 74682
Community History Team Member
23/09/2020 23:48 BST