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Opening the Box Part III

Posted on Fri Dec 22nd, 2023 @ 2:16am by Commodore Tyler Malbrooke & Lieutenant Commander Alyssa Maren & Lieutenant Commander Rowena McGowen & Lieutenant Paul Michael & Lieutenant Ja'sol H'ros & Lieutenant Elen Diari & Lieutenant Junior Grade Thex sh'Zoarhi & Lieutenant JG Gage Tohoyia & Ensign Rachel Sinclair & Lieutenant Vura & Petty Officer 2nd Class Otes Ze & Major Cornelius Tremble & Captain Edmund Merrick & Senior Chief Petty Officer Sha’Zen D'Tem & Sergeant Azure Thompson
Edited on on Sat Dec 23rd, 2023 @ 8:55pm

2,453 words; about a 12 minute read

Mission: Episode 15 - The Evil That Lies Beneath
Location: Garden Cube - Deck 10 - USS Pioneer
Timeline: MD001 2030 hrs

Last Time On Opening The Box Part II

It was with great curiosity, and anticipation, Edmund wanting to see what sort creation Alyssa had wrought in the cargo bay. He had heard during their conversation during the Marine Birthday ball that she had done this. Now he can witness it for himself. When he stepped inside, he was astounded, it was like a miniature garden of Eden and he smiled broadly. He whistled with great appreciation, then looked for Alyssa.

Finding her, Edmund approached her. "Alyssa, this place is amazing!"

"Thank you." She waved a hand toward the plaque on the wall. "It was a group effort. I'm pleased with how well it turned out."

"It looks really great." Edmund answered with a smile.

And Now The Conclusion...

Spotting Edmund and Alyssa, Azure walked over to them tomato juice still on her chin. "Skipper, Alyssa, have you two tried the tomatoes?" She asked.

"I have. I wanted to be sure they were good enough for the crew," Alyssa replied, smiling. "I'm glad you like them."

Azure smiled back.

"Hi there Sergeant, and well you've got a bit of tomato juice on your chin." giving a light chuckle, Edmund motioning towards Azure's chin.

"Oops." Azure said wiping her chin. "I was just sampling the produce. I'm bringing back some strawberries for Marisol, she loves them." She said with a smile. Then her visage darkened, I also have a seed which I've created that is a hybrid of Andorian Ice Rose and an Earth species. I plan to plant it here in Honour of my lost brothers." She added.

Edmund gave a bit of a nod. "That is a worthy goal to have, and I think that they would appreciate that thought." giving a smile.

"We have space set aside for that," Alyssa assured her. "All I ask is that you make sure it is compatible with the other plants in the plot."

The ship had just left Poseidon a few hours ago destined for a cataloging mission, and already Tyler felt as if something was off on the ship. He could not put his finger on it but he was not sleeping well and felt that no one was. However, Commander Maren's Garden Cube project should be the shot in the arm the ship needs. At least Tyler thought so. He looked around as he strode up to Maren. "Commander you have done some truly great work."

"Thank you. And thank you for giving us the space." She smiled, pleased that he liked their new garden. "You have some amazing people here. This was a multi-department effort, and it came together well."

"Hi Commodore." Edmund greeted Tyler. "Hope you had a good shore leave."

"I have indeed it was nice to relax in a new setting. Not to mention promotions are always welcome." Tyler said with a laugh. In truth he rather enjoyed getting to know his wife and crew better during the extended time off. "However, as it is said, duty waits for no one."

"Yes, but you know what they say about all work and no play," Alyssa said, knowing that it pertained to her as much as the two men she was talking to. "I'm not sure it makes you a dull boy, but it definitely affects your mental acuity."

Thex had quietly been admiring some of the flowers letting the scent fill her nose. Now she moved towards her talking ship mates seeing if anyone wanted to talk.

"Hello Thex how are things?" Edmund replied, he then cast his gaze to where Vura was at. "Hello Vura, hopefully you had a pleasant shore leave?"

"Everything fine, my friend. This is very nice isn't it." The Andorian replied with a smile on her face.

Vura sidled up to Edmund, stopping just short of touching him, giving him a secret smile. "Now, now, Edmund, that would be telling, wouldn't it?" She then dropped the act and told Edmund, "You know that I mostly had a working shore leave after just arriving here. There's a lot going on with the crew and I have to make sure they're in the best of mental health. And then there is that other concern that we were discussing the other day."

The Counselor then looked over at Thex after mentioning concerned about mental health and then politely told Thex, "Hello, Thex."

Merrick had a slightly blank expression in his eyes then realized what Vura was talking about before his memory came to the forefront. "You and I will need to converse on that subject later on."

He looked at Thex. "I am glad you had a nice time on the Shore leave."

He glanced back at Vura, "I kind of had a working shore leave as well. Setting up meetings between different crew from both the Pioneer as well as those of Poseidon Station. I even ran into a former CO of mine as well. She is currently part of the command staff of the station."

"Oh, you were not completely working," Vura replied with a mischievous smile. "I seem to recall someone drawing pictures in the Arboretum.... But tell me about the rest."

"There is a little bit to tell, however, we can speak about that later on? I would rather not talk about certain matters whilst in a public area." Merrick giving a solemn nod.

"You know that you will always have my ear, any time that you want it," she told him with a playful innuendo. "After this little affair, why don't we take a walk somewhere more private?" She did not care what others might think of that comment. A part of her actually was humored by it. She supposed that she should probably not start rumors, especially since he made his interest more than known to her regarding Rowena. However, she could correct misconceptions later.

A brief nod from Edmund, "I agree." was his quiet statement.

Sha'Zen entered garden cube. To no one in particular, she said. "I like this place, reminds me a little of home."

"Good." Mignon answered. It was mostly because she hadn't seen Sha'Zen since their return and figured this would be a good opener. "How was your shore leave?"

"Good, I went down to the planet and enjoyed the water, a muti-coloured fish followed me around feeding on the organisms I stirred up." Sha'Zen said. "I named it 'tim'Gar', it means 'colourful one', in my language." She smiled. "I also did some sun bathing. I love the feel of the sun and water on my naked body, don't you?" She said. "How was your shore leave?"

Mignon was Betazoid and didn't have any qualms about being naked, but she generally kept her clothes on in deference to other species--and because she'd spent a good deal of time on earth where you never knew who came from a strict upbringing and who didn't. "I stayed on the ship. The doctors wanted to be sure I was fully healed before letting me do much. But I am looking forward to getting back to work."

"I am glad you are feeling better, you can join me next shore leave." Sha'Zen said.

"Sure. Depending on what you choose to do. You're more adventurous than I am," Mignon admitted.

"How about going over the Majal Falls on Verlin III in a transparent aluminium pod?" Sha'Zen suggested.

"Wow. Maybe. Although that sounds terrifying." But then, after cutting off her own foot, it might not be so scary. "I think I should try it at least once." Just to say she did.

"Good, we'll do it then." Sha'Zen said her skin changing colour to signify her happiness.

"Okay. Maybe we could get some of the others to join us?" I'm sure there would be others willing to take the leap."

"That could be arranged, as the humans say 'the more, the merrier." Sha'Zen replied.

"We should at least ask Shayla and Alyssa. And anyone else who'd like to try." Mignon grinned. "As you said, the more the merrier."

"Of course, the four of us have been through a great trial together, on my world that makes us family." Sha'Zen said doing her best approximation of a smile.

"Yes. Yes, it does," Mignon agreed.

" I found out what was causing the supply problem. Well, me and every other officer dealing with supplies in the sector." Thex chirped in.

"You did?" Mignon asked, turning her attention to the ops chief.

" One of the relay satellites got hit by a very bad solar flare when it was updating and had it's shields down. It was reset to the previous sector it was deployed in. That's why all the cargo pods were coming in completely messed up." Thex explained.

Ja'sol wandered into the gardening cube and looked about and observed all the different plants being grown in here. he wandered about until he saw a group of people gathered about and talking and went towards them. " To who would I speak with if I wanted to grow some plants in here. " He asked.

"I do believe that Commander Maren would be the one to speak about such." Edmund replied then said. "Glad you could come see this." he added with a warm smile. "It is quite delightful to see."

Straightening her uniform, she walked into the Cargo Bay. Rowena intended not to come at first, but as the second officer she decided she should at least show her face. She looked around the room and noticed quite a group had gathered. She opted for a second to leave again, but she was already spotted by several people, so there was no way she could leave now. She put up a smile and walked further in and looked around the room. The science department really outdone themselves, she thought to herself.

Edmund's eyes were drawn towards the entrance of the cargo bay and a smile just lit up his face when he saw Rowena, he gave a wave towards her. "Hello, what do you think about this?" he called out to her.

Rowena walked over to Edmund. She wanted to drag herself, but that wouldn't have looked professional. She smiled to Edmund. It's incredible," She said, "The science department really outdid themselves. It's beautiful." Despite not wanting to be here, she was indeed impressed by the work.

Edmund gave a warm smile. "Definitely a very lovely place." he didn't say much more, not wanting to draw too much undue attention to Rowena, he did want to say, that the garden had become even more beautiful with her arrival. He kept those words in his heart, perhaps one day he will utter those words when the occasion was right.

Ja'sol walked around the cargo bay and marveled at all the plants from different cultures and worlds that were growing together in this on place. What he wanted was to grow some herbs and spices from his home world for his cooking so he could have a taste of home once again. The sights and aroma of the garden brought back memories of his family and the meals they shared together. He would seek out Commander Maren and ask her about some space to grow several things here.

"Hello, lieutenant," Alyssa said, coming up to the security chief. "Thank you for stopping by the garden. Feel free to look around and try some of the snacks."

Finally, the members of the crew slowly left the cargo bay to return to their duties or their evening's activities. When the last person was gone, Alyssa walked through the garden checking to make sure everything was still in order. It wasn't that she expected to find anything amiss; it was more a matter of habit. She was responsible for the garden's creation and she wanted Pioneer's crew to use this place to relax or to grow some herbs or a few plants. She wanted them to have plants in their own quarters. But this...felt like a bit of paradise away from work. She was proud of all the effort that her department and so many others had put into it.

she wished Jek'Lar were here to share this with her, but she hadn't heard from him in a while and wasn't even sure he was still on Empok Nor. Later, she told herself. She wasn't ready for a repeat of last time.

When she was satisfied everything was in order, she set the garden cube to night and went to her quarters to read.

A Joint Post By

Captain Edmund Merrick
The Cure Executive Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Paul Michael
Chief Flight Control Officer, USS Pioneer

Ensign Auba Lyna
Security Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Commander Alyssa Maren
Chief Science Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant JG Mignon Mejia
Alien Archaeologist/Anthropologist, USS Pioneer

Commodore Tyler Malbrooke
Commanding Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Commander Rowena McGowen
Chief Intelligence Officer/Second Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Ja'sol H'ros
Chief Security and Tactical Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Elen Diari
Chief Engineering Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Junior Grade Thex sh'Zoarhi
Chief Operations Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Junior Grade Gage Tohoyia
Infiltration Specialist, USS Pioneer

Ensign Rachel Sinclair
Assistant Chief Security and Tactical Officer, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Vura
Chief Counselor, USS Pioneer

Petty Officer Second Class Otes Ze
Nurse, USS Pioneer

Major Cornelius Tremble
Executive Officer, USS Pioneer
Commanding Officer, The Cure

Senior Chief Petty Officer Sha'Zen D'Tem
Biologist, USS Pioneer

Sergeant Azure Thompson
Corpsman, USS Pioneer


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