Part 32: Episode 32: "Task Force"Episode 32: "Task Force"
Captain's Log posted:
I've been reassigned to the U.S.S. Bounty.
It's only temporary, but… let's just say, the Bounty's commanding officer is as pleased about this turn of events as I am. With the Ozaki still in drydock after Franklin Drake's disastrous integration of Borg technology into the ship, the Federation has decided that now is the time to launch a strike against the Romulan shipyard experimenting with integrating Romulan and Borg technology.
I'd point out the hypocrisy, but Section 31 doesn't technically exist.
I've been assigned command of a five-ship task force. In addition to the USS Bounty, we'll be joined by Vice Admiral Nafre of the USS Sagan, Commander Simeon of the USS Requiem, Commander Discordia of the USS Bethune, and Commander Faayla of the USS Normandy. Due to my familiarity with Romulans and in spite of the presence of the Vice Admiral, I am in command of this task force.
To coin a human phrase, I'll make a convenient scapegoat if things go badly awry.
The bulk of my officers remain with the Ozaki. Hopefully we can prevent any more unexpected 'surprises', but less than three hours out of Sol I already miss them. There is comfort in the familiar, and this ship and crew are… unfamiliar to me. Worse, the U.S.S. Bounty already has a commander, and she is unimpressed by my temporary 'promotion' to the unofficial rank of 'commodore' for this little… excursion.
"Sorry to interrupt you, Commodore. We're nearing the Romulan border."
"Thank you, Commander. I-"
"Commodore, let's get something straight. This is my ship, and my crew. Starfleet Command may want you in charge, but it's just on paper. You-"
"Commander, I will be brief. This is my mission. I have the utmost respect for both you and your crew, and under normal circumstances I would never usurp your authority. These are not normal circumstances, so I have to politely ask that you serve as executive officer on this mission. If you have any objections-"
"-then I will be forced to relieve you of your responsibilities to this crew to prevent you from jeopardizing this mission."
"Commander, I would much prefer to have you on the bridge and in a position to help me take care of your crew. I don't have a history of leaving Federation officers behind and I wouldn't be here if I thought this was some sort of suicide mission. I also know I'd be angry, were I in your position, but this mission is too important to let personality conflicts interfere. Now… your objections?"
"… Are withdrawn. Sir. But only because I feel you're being sincere, not because-"
"Not because you trust me. I know. I've-"
"… You do?"
"Ugh, telepaths. Look, do you honestly think you're the first to be suspicious of me? Commander, I don't know whether you just don't like me because I'm a Cardassian, or whether you're just angry because Starfleet Command has temporarily put me in command of your ship; but we're both Starfleet officers, and we both have our duties to perform. Prophets know I'd rather be on my own ship, but they're not going to shed any tears over this and neither will I. Are you with me? Can I count on you and your crew?"
"I'm going to regret this… I'm with you. Just don't ask me to call you 'sir', Commodore."
"Just call me Korvat. It's easier for me to remember."
"A lone viper will be entrusted with a great bounty,"
"To drive the circling vultures from an injured man,"
"But will not be spared a great loss before the temple gates."
Captain's Log posted:
That… went better than I expected. Far better.
The Bounty has a stellar crew, and I've already expressed my compliments to her Commander. They work together like a well-oiled machine, even under such trying circumstances. They followed my orders like professionals, which I really shouldn't find surprising. Perhaps a certain someone won them over after we had our little conversation; I don't know.
As good as they are… this isn't my crew. I've already turned over the 'Captain's Ready Room', and have resigned myself to having a quiet trip back to Starbase 01. It'd be like a vacation if I wasn't so worried about the Ozaki.
Speaking of 'vacations', Commander Discordia has invited all the captains in the task force over for a visit to the USS Bethune for a 'joint Holodeck adventure'. I must admit I'm curious-I still haven't gotten an opportunity to write any programs for the Ozaki's holodeck. There always seem to be concerns more pressing than personal relaxation.