USS Nimitz

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New Beginnings

Posted on Fri Jul 19th, 2013 @ 8:16am by Senior Chief Petty Officer Logan Sutler & Captain Daniela Moreno

Mission: Tabula Rasa
Location: Starbase 414


It was at least hour seven in the brig, possibly hour eight; Logan's ability to measure time started to decay slightly after the first ten minutes. He'd been tapping his fingertips against the force field, recoiling every time it jolted against him. He had the asbestos fingers from his time in engineering, and though he couldn't feel it, he didn't fancy burning his hands. He would've started to sing loudly, but there was no security officer to annoy. There wasn't much to do but wait.

Daniela Moreno stood in an adjacent room, her eyes fixed on the monitor as the constable watched her. She'd been standing there watching Logan Sutler for almost 30 minutes now. She wasn't sure what she was looking for, but there was definitely something there. After he'd been involved in a fight on the station, Admiral Reardon (NPC) had elected not to bail him out of the brig, but let him sit and stew. She'd heard that his transfer orders had already been put through and the admiral had used his power to expedite the process. There was something about him that Will Reardon didn't like and that intrigued her.

Without a word, she stepped away from the monitor and walked down the short hallway to the holding cells. Daniela stepped far enough through the door so that it would close behind her, but she planted herself there and stared across the room at the NCO behind the force field. She didn't say anything for several minutes until she started to stalk toward the holding cell.

"This is the eighth time in the last 2 years that you've been held in a brig for fighting. You really don't play well with others, do you?"

"I play well," Logan countered, looking at the woman for a moment with a studious gaze, then back to the force field. "There are many who disagree with my style of play. In this particular instance, neither of the altercations were entirely my fault." Logan gestured enthusiastically, like a good lawyer. It was one of his engine room habits that he hadn't even noticed. "Lieutenant Fhog asked me to take a look at their engines on the Gryphon, and tweak anything that looked out of place. When I discovered that he's been fixing his ship as though he's got an acquired brain injury, naturally I put things back in their proper order. He didn't care for that. As for the tussle with Commander Bailey, well... his wife came onto me." A brief, nostalgic smile crossed his face, before fading just as quickly. His celtic brogue had fallen slightly into the more generic American sounding Starfleet accent of late, but there were still traces there.

"We haven't met, have we?" Logan asked, looking up from the ripples of energy where his fingers broke the surface of the invisible barrier. "I'd remember you."

"Be glad we haven't met until now, Chief," she snapped, unamused at his explanations. The excuses alone were enough to drive her to side with Admiral Reardon for once. "You have an excuse for everything, don't you?" she said as she stopped a few meters from the force field. "Do you have some kind of superiority complex that needs feeding several times a day or are you just an ass?"

"Bit of both." He explained without reservation. "But in answer to your question; yes, generally speaking, I do. I don't usually like needing excuses, but it's better to have a thing and not need it than need a thing and not have it."

"Admiral Reardon wants to see you gone and I'm inclined to agree with him, so unless you have a real explanation instead of more smartass comments, I'm sure he'll be happy to arrange that you either get drummed out of Starfleet or perpetually see the inside of a holding cell. The choice is yours, Chief, but I'd think long and hard about that before you make another foolish comment to the one person who can get your ass out of her," she snapped back hard enough to cause him to blink a couple of times.

"I.. hm." Logan stopped to think. He wasn't particularly bothered by the alternative, but she hadn't really done anything wrong, there was no advantage in antagonizing her. He let out a sigh, he didn't really want to explain. He couldn't see her collar, but given her attitude, she could probably force him to. "Commander Bailey had intimated to me that his relationship with his wife had lost some of it's zest. She's half Klingon, you'd have seen her at some of the dinners. He and I came to an arrangement wherein her advances wouldn't be as immediately rebuffed as they might've been, and he roughed me up. I'd have kicked his English arse if it came to it, but it was all for show. Just so happened that the Security chief walked in as it was happening. As for Fhog, well, the man's a liability. I got stuck with double-checking his maintenance schedule because everyone else was too scared of criticizing the only darling son of Vice Admiral Fhog. And, rather than sending out a scathing report about the imminent explosions, I chose to fix the problems myself. Fhog didn't like that. Got quite a temper on him for a four-foot pig man. I was expecting a thank you, not a punch in the bollocks." He rolled his eyes, feeling somewhat sold out. "If you want me to explain the others I'm going to need a list, I haven't really committed them to memory."

"I'm sorry, you did what with a Commander and his half-Klingon wife?" she asked in disbelief.

"I let him prove himself." Logan answered in a clipped tone. He was obviously not happy with explaining the story. He preferred the briefer version. "He's an engineer, I'm an engineer. I do have some obligation to the fraternity, every now and then."

Daniela shook her head in disbelief. "You're a special kind of stupid, Chief."

"Interesting. I've been called a lot of pejoratives, never stupid. What exactly is it you want, anyway? Interviews for some sort of brig/outside pen pal program, I'm hoping." He squinted at her through the forcefield.

"You were on my short list for Chief Engineer. Despite your unique... charm... your skills come recommended without hesitation. The question I was constantly asked though was if that outweighed the fact that you're a complete ass. I'm not so sure it does now," she replied.

"Well," Logan cleared his throat. "I can't speak to the recommendation of others. But Starfleet's been trying to kick me out for most of my career. I've been court martialled five times, only once successfully, and I did deserve that one. I have very little in common with the values of our beloved fleet, but one thing we do both agree on is that I'm useful. Useful enough that they'll bring me back even after a dishonorable discharge. If you want to pass that up, go ahead, I won't blame you. The second my usefulness is outweighed by my other negative traits, I'll probably cut them out. But until then, I wouldn't count on it. We're a package deal, my problems and me. And who knows, after all these years of watching friends die and planets burn while we make desperate peace with the people who did it, maybe my quips are all that keep me sane."

His history was no surprise to her. She'd done her homework and knew about his turbulent past. That wasn't the part that bothered her. "If you have such opposing views to the Federation, then why the hell even stay here?" she challenged. "Why not cut and run?"

"I've thought about it. Honestly, I have. I've had offers. Breen, Romulans, not to mention the litany of private weapons manufacturers outside our borders." Logan stopped, realizing he couldn't remember why exactly he hadn't taken any of them. Then he remembered. "I like the frontier. I like the adventure. If I'm going to spend the rest of my life in an office, it might as well be an office with phasers going Warp Nine. And besides, it's not easy to make money without anyone getting hurt for it. Our godless communist forebears got that part right."

Daniela nodded slowly. Admittedly she was surprised by his answer. Someone with no regard for authority didn't seem like someone to wax poetic about the frontier and not wanting to hurt anyone. It was a different side to him than the picture others had painted and confirmed her desire to stand face-to-face with the man and talk to him. "I can't say there will be many phaser fights, but if it's the frontier you want, you have a spot on the Nimitz."

"Sure. It'd be better than whatever Reardon's got planned for me." He accepted, with a nonchalant raise of his eyebrows.

She stepped closer to the holding cell. "But let me make one thing clear, Chief. I do not tolerate insubordination. You disobey my orders and I will not hesitate to kick your ass out an airlock. Do I make myself clear?"

"I believe that would be murder ma'am, but I understand and accept." Logan said with a nod.

"Very good. You start next week," she said over her shoulder as she moved toward the exit.

Logan raised an eyebrow at the disappearing woman. "It's going to be hard to get a lay of the land with this thing in the way." He tapped the forcefield with his index finger.

Moreno stopped. "I was never here to get you out, Chief. I'll see you next week."

"Aye, ma'am, that you will." He grinned widely. She might yet be fun.



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