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Personal Log | Lt. Shi'iara Stivi | New Beginnings

Posted on 10/22/2021 @ 1:05am by Lieutenant Shi'iara Stivi
Edited on on 10/22/2021 @ 10:19pm

Mission: Genesis
Location: Starfleet Intelligence HQ, Yellowstone Runabout: Yogi, Cold Station Theta
Tags: Character Introduction, Cold Station Theta, Vindicator, Star Fleet Intelligence HQ, Flashback, Character History, Shi'iara Stivi

"The time is now 0445." The computer's dulcet tones, and the voice of Starfleet, sounded in Lieutenant Shi'iara Stivi's ears. She had been on the edge of consciousness for the last thirty minutes.

"The time is now 0445 and 15 seconds."

Shi'iara sat up in bed, her legs sliding and rotating to the side of the bed, her bare feet touching the plush carpeted floor. "Computer, I'm awake," Shi'iara said, clearing her throat gently. Her arms stretched up over her head, her back arched, and her body shuddered from her head to the tips of her 6'6" frame. Shi'iara stood from the bed and moved to her wardrobe pulling a jacket and a grey undershirt from her wardrobe. In years past, Shi'iara would have worried about keeping her identity a secret, for operational security reasons, but other operatives she'd talked to said that having "spooks" on board a starship was commonplace now.

Shi'iara laid her selected uniform on her bed, before moving to the refresher. She'd been over her orders a thousand times since the PADD had been delivered. Shi'iara stripped her clothes as she walked, leaving them in a neat pile at the door to the refresher. And before she was consciously aware of it the sonic shower was pulsing into her skin. Her eyes closed, and that's when the flashbacks returned.

"It's over Damar! Drop your weapon. Let's end this conflict peacefully." It had been 3 weeks since her last mission and this scene was still playing itself out any time she closed her eyes. Shi'iara could feel her arms raise the weapon into firing position. But it wasn't real. It felt like an echo. It was an echo.

"You call storming this compound peaceful? Ha! Just like Starfleet to say one thing and do the complete opposite! You're all a bunch of lying valgenar!" He fired missing just wide as Shi'iara ducked out of the way, taking cover. In this echo, everything seemed to move slower. Her eyes opened and the vision was gone. She rotated in the sonic shower, letting the sound wash over her front. The waves of sound were soothing, deceptive, beguiling. Soon, Shi'iara's eyes closed again.

More flashbacks. Though, they were out of order. Explosions. Shouting. Chaos. The breaching charges and stun grenades had just gone off signaling the start of the compound liberation. Another flash. This time the faces of the hostages flashed in her mind one by one. She could see their fear, their confusion, their sadness, but what was worse was that she could see their helplessness. In the moment, she couldn't do anything about it except her duty. The sonic shower powered off and Shi'iara slumped back against the shower wall taking a deep breath. Everything had worked out. She was given a medal for her actions. Still, it was hard to take solace in that fact while these flashbacks were haunting her.

***


Shi'iara stood on the observation deck of Starfleet Intelligence Command, not far from her quarters, in parade rest. Across Horseshoe Bay she could clearly see the Golden Gate Bridge. To the left of the bridge, Alcatraz Island. While it was visible, a low fog layer obscured its finer details. The sun was just beginning to rise over the horizon and mountains of the area. Soon the fog would burn off and Alcatraz would -- decloak. The Lieutenant didn't allow herself long to admire the view of the bay. She was going to miss waking up to this view, though. A left face sent her to the turbolift. The doors opened with the familiar hiss and she stepped inside.

"Hangar Complex Three Alpha."

The turbolift whirred to life, shifting rails twice before arriving to the hangar. The car stopped with a slight bump and a rock. Shi'iara tensed her thighs and halted the momentum of the stop. The doors once again hissed open and stepped out of the turbolift car. She stalked toward the hangar doors. Starfleet Marines stood sentry duty at the doors. As she approached, the Marines raised their rifles and assumed attention. Shi'iara saluted.

"Good morning, Marines. I have orders to Cold Station Theta. There's a Yellowstone waiting for me on pad five," Shi'iara said as she slowly lifted the PADD up to the Corporal.

The Marine eased from attention and took the PADD. Everything was in order. There was indeed a Yellowstone Runabout on pad five. "The orders check out. The others in your party have already checked in. Safe travels, Sir." The Marine again snapped to attention and saluted. Shi'iara returned his salute and after she dropped hers, he eased and pressed the button to key the doors.

***


Shi'iara took her seat at the OPS console on the right of the runabout. Three others had joined her with orders to Cold Station Theta. A Cadet 3rd class looked at Shi'iara uncomfortably, then sat as Shi'iara motioned to the CONN seat beside her. "Cadet," she said briefly looking in her direction.

The Cadet nodded. "Sir," she said.

"What do you say we fire this thing up?"

The two Marines in the back spoke up. "Hoorah, Sir."

A chuckle from Shi'iara. "Hoorah indeed, Marines. Batteries on."

"Batteries on." The Cadet tapped her panel and the interior of the runabout lit up. Consoles started coming to life.

"Plasma intercoolers active."

"Plasma intercoolers -- " the Cadet's voice cut off as she tried to locate the button. Shi'iara pointed out the control the Cadet was searching for, and again she spoke "active," she nodded.

"Deuterium injectors, active. Inertial navigation systems, align. Inertial dampeners, active. Impulse engines, prime. Engines start. Generators, start. " Shi'iara had started shuttles and runabouts hundreds of times before. She monitored the checklist and the Cadet's performance from her own console. She was performing admirably.

Over the next three minutes, Shi'iara continued to call out the checklist items. As the checklist completed, Shi'iara spoke up "You have the CONN, Cadet."

"I have the CONN. Aye, Sir," the Cadet said. The Cadet couldn't help but look at the alien woman to her right. Her features were striking. And the Lieutenant was probably the first, and only, Andivoron she'd ever seen. Fortunately, more of Lieutenant Stivi's race were beginning to join Starfleet, so they wouldn't be a foreign sight for long.

"Starfleet control, Yellowstone Yogi, we have a picnic basket ready to go on 3A, pad 5, en route to Cold Station Theta. Ready to copy clearance."

"Yellowstone Yogi, roger. Cleared to Cold Station Theta as filed. Depart straight out, join suborbital beacon A567, orbital CS688, Lunar 5342, then warp at your discretion, not to exceed warp 3 until clear of Sol." The controller's voice was pleasant, calm, and professional.

"Cleared to Cold Station as filed. Departing straight out to sub A567, orbital CS688, Lunar 5342 and we'll keep it under warp 3 until out of the system. Yellowstone Yogi."

"Yellowstone Yogi, readback correct. Safe travels and remember to stay away from Mr. Ranger."

"Take us out, Cadet. Maneuvering thrusters only." Shi'iara thought about the exchange between herself and the controller. Apparently, that exchange came from an old Earth form of entertainment. She didn't begin to understand it, but it was briefed as a part of protocol upon arriving on site.

The roundabout lifted off of the pad and hovered momentarily until the Cadet slid the maneuvering thrusters slider to one-quarter. Once out of the hangar, the Cadet increased speed to one-eighth impulse power, the nose angled up towards the clouds, climbing at a standard 20 degrees. Shi'iara looked out the right window and down toward the ground. They were nearing the edge of the restricted airspace around Starfleet Headquarters and Starfleet Intelligence. She started a mental countdown, "5... 4... 3... 2..."

"Exiting restricted airspace. Increasing speed to one-quarter impulse." The Cadet looked over to Shi'iara before returning her attention outside the craft and to her console. Her eyes were constantly moving, scanning.

Shi'iara gave a curt nod. "Excellent, Cadet. Well done. Once we're out of the atmosphere you can increase speed to full impulse. Lieutenant Shi'iara Stivi. It's a pleasure to meet you Cadet. You're performing excellently." Shi'iara stood from her console and patted the Cadet's shoulder gently.

The Cadet smiled brightly. "Cadet Mari Oolvan. Thank you for saying so, Sir."

Shi'iara turned back to the other chairs in the center of the runabout. "Marines?"

"Sergeant Vera," the Marine that initiated the earlier 'Hoorah' said, and punched the Marine beside himself gently in the chest. "And this, is Lance Corporal Natchez." Shi'iara held out her hand to shake the hands of the Marines.

"Your first time to Cold Station Theta?"

"New orders. Yes, Sir," Natchez said.

"My first time also, but I'll be joining the crew of the Vindicator when they dock again. Enjoy your trip Marines. And do try to stay out of trouble. Those space station security chiefs can get uppity. They get bored."

A grin from Natchez and Vera. They looked back and forth between one another, then back to the Lieutenant. "No promises, Sir," they said in unison.

"Sir? We're crossing Lunar Marker 5342."

"Excellent. Let's jump to warp. Warp 2.75, Cadet until we're out of the system." Shi'iara returned to her chair and took her seat. She activated the autopilot, and then turned her chair to the back of the cabin. "At ease, Cadet. I've enabled the autopilot. You are free to move about the cabin.

***


The others were asleep in the Yogi's quarters. Shi'iara had taken her sleep earlier so she could be "on-duty" when the arrival at Cold Station Theta was slated to take place. The lights inside the cabin were dimmed. And the cabin was quiet. It was a welcome respite from the last several months. It was good to be back in a cockpit again. Even if it wasn't a Stormcrow. Shi'iara's last several missions had been boots on the ground. A light on the console began to pulse. Shi'iara acknowledged the soft-alert. The runabout would be dropping out of warp soon.

Shi'iara exhaled deeply and relaxed deeper into her seat. It was timed perfectly with the Yogi dropping out of warp. "Cold Station Theta Control, Yellowstone Yogi with a Picnic Basket on board. We're on approach. Requesting full-stop."

"Good morning, Yellowstone Yogi. Understand you have a picnic basket for the Ranger. Cleared to dock deck 830, pad 23. Maneuvering thrusters at 2500 meters."

The wry grin that spread across Shi'iara's face bled into her voice. "Was told to stay clear of the Ranger, Control. Cleared to dock, Deck 830, pad 23. Will reduce to maneuvering thrusters at 2500 meters. Yellowstone Yogi." Shi'iara switched to internal comms. "Good morning sleepyheads. We're on approach to the station. It's absolutely stunning. Wouldn't want you to miss the approach. We'll be docking in 10."

The Marines and the Cadet emerged two minutes later, and took seats around the command stations. "You weren't kidding, El-Tee. It's spectacular," Natchez's voice came over Shi'iara's right shoulder.

"And fu-- ", Vera cleared his throat "And massive. Just think, Natchez, we're home."

"Aye, Sarge. We're home. For now."

"Hey! Orders are orders. We should be here for a year or two at least, Natchez. Beats boots hitting the ground. This will be cushy, Marine."

"You will still be deployed from here, surely?" Shi'iara said. The roundabout was nearing the 2500 meter mark. She reduced the ship's speed to maneuvering thrusters only, and glanced back over her left shoulder briefly.

"Well, yeah... of course, El-Tee. B-but, at least when we're done we'll be back in cushville."

"Just make sure you remember your training, Marine. It wouldn't bode well if you were to lose your edge."

Vera was getting a bit defensive. But he tried not to let it come through. His hand balled into a fist. And in that moment, he could feel the cold hard steel of a ball bearing in his palm. "This is your military bearing. Obviously you need it, Marine. Don't lose it." The words echoed through Vera's head.

"Of course not, Sir. Wouldn't dream of it." His words came out strained, through firmly gritted teeth. Vera cleared his throat before falling silent.

Cold Station Theta filled the entirety of the Yogi's viewport. Workbees and other traffic moved about the station. It was a sight the likes of which Shi'iara hadn't seen in a long time. Still, the sight inspired wonder and awe. "Are you okay, Cadet? You've been awfully quiet."

"Yes, Sir. It's just -- fantastic." A yawn caught Cadet Oolvan by surprise. She covered her mouth even as she blushed bright red. "And, I'm still a bit sleepy, Sir."

The runabout entered the docking bay and continued to make its way toward landing pad 23. Once the Runabout was aligned with the pad, a short-range tractor beam latched onto the runabout. Shi'iara cut the maneuvering thrusters as the runabout lurched. The craft was pulled into position and at the center of the pad, another mini-tractor beam latched onto the bottom of the craft and pulled it gently down. The sound of contact reverberated through the hull.

"Cadet, stay behind and help me shut down the Yogi. Marines, enjoy your new post. Be safe. Be vigilant. If I catch you in the lounge, we'll drink to new beginnings. Dismissed."

"Of course, Sir. Thanks for the ride." Natchez and Vera said in unison. They lifted their bags and slung them over their shoulders before moving to the door on the port side of the runabout. Natchez keyed the door which opened with a hiss as it depressurized. Before leaving, Vera turned back to the Lieutenant.

"El-Tee?"

"Yes Sergeant?"

"Thanks for reminding me where I kept my bearing." Vera turned on his heel and walked out as he saw the Lieutenant turn over her shoulder and nod with understanding. Several seconds later the door hissed closed and the Cadet and Lieutenant were left alone.

"You did very well, on this flight, Cadet. I will be sending a full report back to the Academy with a shining review of your performance. Keep applying yourself and I'm sure you'll have any posting your heart desires."

"Thank you, Sir. That means a lot to me."

"It's well-deserved, Cadet." The two women worked through their respective shutdown checklists as they talked. Several minutes later, they had shutdown the runabout. Shi'iara had given Cadet Oolvan her blessing to take her leave and start her new journey on Cold Station Theta. Shi'iara stood from the CONN and walked back into her room, grabbing her gear and slinging it over her shoulder, she walked back to the shuttle's entry. She ducked under the door and patted the hull as the door closed.

"Take care of yourself, Yogi. Stay away from the Ranger." Shi'iara looked around the large docking bay and took in a deep breath. She took 5 steps away from the runabout. "To new beginnings." A nod. "To new beginnings," she said to herself.

 

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