((Captain's Ready Room, USS Syracuse))
Rahman: Commander, why did you volunteer to do the job?
Jolara: Because I thought it was the only way to slow the thing down. To give the rest of you a chance to get away.
Rahman: ::nods:: And why do you think I let you do it?
Jolara: Because you thought...
::She exhaled with realization.::
Jolara: Because, giving what we knew, you thought it was our only option.
::Roshanara raised her finger as if to mark the exclamation point.::
Rahman: Ahh, so you do see, don't you?
Jolara: ::nodding slowly:: Yes, sir.
::This time, Roshanara smiled back at Rune.::
Rahman: Before I kick you out of here, commander, and send you on your way, I think it is important to have this conversation since one day, I have no doubt, you too will become a captain and perhaps may even share this conversation with someone under your own command. Why do we give out these ribbons and medals? Hell, what is the entire purpose of the ceremony? You and I both know we don't perform our actions for such recognition or bits of metal and cloth.
Jolara: The official answer... to recognize service and personal accomplishments and highlight a Starfleet Officer’s career. ::brief pause:: I am sorry. With you permission, Captain, I will kick myself out of here.
Rahman: Just a moment, commander. Your answer is only partially correct.
::She folded her hands together.::
Rahman: Yes, it is to recognize and highlight an officer's accomplishments, but more than that, the service ribbons and awards you receive reflect not just your own achievement but that of this ship and the service at large. It shows the high standards that we achieve and the excellence this unit is capable of producing. So you see now... you can't return the ribbon anymore than you could take back your own achievement.
::She took a breath herself.::
Rahman: Now, whether you choose to display those ribbons or not... that's your choice. But the achievement behind that ribbon? That will always be yours, and no one can ever take that away from you.
Jolara: ::standing:: Thank you, Captain. May the sun shine upon you and warm winds carry you on your journey.
Rahman: And to you, commander. Congratulations again on your baby. ::She returned a warm grin.:: How are you finding motherhood?
Rahman: With the end of tour aboard Invicta, perhaps you'll get that extra time. There's no rush to immediately sign up for the next one.
Rahman: When you are ready to return, drop me a line. ::She looked around the ready room.:: She might not be as glamorous as the Invicta, but I could always use a skilled intelligence officer. And after our recent... "venture" into history, Starfleet owes me a favor now.
::The captain nodded once more before the other woman turned to leave.::
Rahman: Good day, commander. Enjoy your time away.
Captain Roshanara Rahman
Commanding Officer, USS Syracuse