R’Kala looked out into the lake as Tomas spoke. Having a disagreement with the captain was an interesting image in her head. Even though Oddas was the commanding officer, it didn’t mean that there wouldn’t be people who had different thoughts on procedures. They were all sentient beings after all.
R’Kala: And how did you feel after this? What did you do with these emotions?
Falt: I was still agitated when I got back to the ship. I went to the holodeck to unwind with Dekas and a couple of the new Ensigns. During the programme I may have vented some of my frustrations on some holographic vampires, in a somewhat gory fashion. I did enjoy it immensely though; I’m kind of hoping that isn’t a bad thing.
She raised an eyebrow. She had not expected to hear him say that he had gone vampire slaying to deal with the anger and agitation. She supposed it was a fairly healthy way to release tension.
R’Kala: What’s important is your acknowledgment of these feelings. ::she turned to him:: Away missions can get messy, and in the heat of circumstances, we can easily become divisive from our heightened emotions.
Falt: I… think I’m following…
R’Kala: What I’m saying is that having the feelings you did—the anger, the agitation—is completely normal. It’s to be expected in fact. You’re human. You were able to transfer these feelings into a hands-on activity, which is not a bad thing.
Falt: It wasn’t intentional. Dekas was the one running the programme, I didn’t even know what it was about. My main motivation was to spend time with him and see how he was recovering after his… incident. The holographic vampire killing was part of the programme, although I doubt the designer intended participants to be quiet as enthusiastic about the slaying as I was…
R’Kala truly didn’t see anything wrong in the activity, but the situation didn’t end after his holographic program.
R’Kala: What we need to understand though, is how you feel after...::an awkward pause:: spending time with holographic vampires?
Tomas raised an eyebrow, surprised by R’Kala’s awkward pause. He hadn’t expected a Klingon to react that way when discussing a violent holodeck programme. He was rapidly forming the opinion that R’Kala was no ordinary Klingon - in a good way.
Falt: I did feel better. Although how much of that can be attributed to the holodeck programme, I’m not sure. I left the holodeck as I was called in by the Captain, she debriefed me on the mission and we cleared the air.
R’Kala: And how do you feel about your relationship with Captain Oddas now?
Falt: I like to think I’ve got a good working relationship with her. I’ve been lucky to have spent as much time with her as I have since I joined the ship. ::short pause:: The event has made me realize I’m not that close to many officers on the ship though. When I came back from the away mission I’d hoped to talk to a friend, Doctor Sival, about how I felt. Unfortunately they had just left the ship and I discovered there wasn’t anyone else I could turn to. That is something I hope to rectify.
The life of a Starfleet officer could sometimes be very isolating when people came and went. His comment about Dr. Sival made R’Kala think about her former roommate/first friend on the ship, Vitor Silveira, who had left the Juneau before they could really become good friends. It had also been a while since she had seen T’Lea, someone she considered to be a mentor. She let out a sign, wondering what was the point of making friends on a starship when there was always the opportunity of them leaving in the blink of an eye.
R’Kala: Well, I wish you luck in that, and it seems to me you have everything worked out or in the process of being worked out.
Falt: Well, if you’re happy I’m not showing any Red flags then I’m happy. ::short pause:: How about you, do you still want to talk about what’s bothering you?
This would be particularly difficult for her. She wasn’t close with Tomas, but she had to start somewhere.
R’Kala: Before I joined Starfleet I was an instructor at the Daystrom Institute—sociology. I was placed on an extended sabbatical and told to enlist in Starfleet to gain ::using air quotes:: “field experience.”
Tomas raised an eyebrow. He hadn’t known R’Kala had taught at the Daystrom institute. She must have been one of a few Klingons ever to have done so. There was clearly a lot more to his fellow officer than met the eye.
Falt: As you were already an instructor that seems like an odd requirement to have placed on you?
R’Kala: My supervisor was very diplomatic in handling the situation as it was actually a sabbatical for me to leave as I had several student and faculty complaints stating that I was too aggressive, too rude, too Klingon. He thought me joining Starfleet and working on a starship might teach me how to work with a team. ::pause:: I received a call from my colleague at the beginning of shore leave, essentially informing me that I had been terminated permanently from my teaching position.
Tomas winced, getting that information over subspace must have been painful.
Falt: That must have been… difficult.
She had gone through several emotions after getting the news, something she might even call the stages of grief.
R’Kala: Initially, I was very angry. I broke a lot of equipment and yelled a lot, and then I felt embarrassed. After some reflection, I think my move towards counselor stems from my frustration as a science officer. Now I just feel...indifferent.
Tomas nodded, he’d have been angry too.
Falt: Your anger seems entirely appropriate, it sounds like you were treated unfairly. You’re… different… from most Klingons I’ve met, but I’d wager you get ::short pause:: as passionate about things as the rest of your species. They must have known that when they took you on as an instructor,
Tomas made a good point.
R’Kala: Well, I’m no longer interested in what they would have known.
Falt: I’m glad you’re moving on. It sounds like they didn’t appreciate your passion, and chances are they never will.
R’Kala: Yes, you’re definitely correct about that lieutenant. ::letting out a sigh:: I know you’re not a counselor, but any thoughts?
Falt: I’m no good at giving advice but I will ask you to do something, one ship mate to another. Be yourself. Hold onto that passion, that Klingon fire. It has helped make you the clearly formidable woman you are today, and I’m sure the rest of us will only benefit from that.
R’Kala: Thank you. I’ll try and remember that.
It was good advice, and she would have to work on keeping that passion alive, even if she was no longer in the traditional science role or in the educator role anymore. She would have to apply that passion to her new position now.
Falt: ::nodding:: If it helped you in any way then I am glad. Thank you for listening to me as well.
R’Kala: ::smiling:: Well, it’s technically my job to listen, but I’m also glad we were able to help each other.
He looked around. The nature of the Ring meant there was never a true night, only an artificial one. Regardless of the cause he could see the light levels had reduced since they had first sat by the lake.
Falt: We should probably get back to work. I need to send these updated schematics to Commander Vamiz aboard the Grace Hopper for review. Assuming he agrees we can make a start on adding your arboretum tomorrow?
R’Kala: Sounds like a plan to me, lieutenant.
Falt: Excellent, I love it when a plan comes together.
Lieutenant JG Tomas Falt
USS Juneau, NX-99801