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Before we Begin
Episode 11 - Family Matters
Stardate 73834.3
MD004 1400 hrs

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Seeing it His Way

Posted on Thu Oct 17th, 2019 @ 12:15pm by Commander Quinn Ó Flannagáin & Makeba Brown
Edited on on Thu Oct 17th, 2019 @ 12:22pm

Mission: Episode 8 - The Silence
Location: Quarters of Makeba Brown - Deck 2 - USS Pioneer
Timeline: MD004 1300 hrs
2945 words - 6 OF Standard Post Measure



Makeba's head had been swimming the past three days. She had learned more than she ever really wanted to know about Cardassians, Starfleet, The Maquis and how they all use people to their ends. She managed to kiss the collective butts of her security detail long enough for them to allow her to return to quarters. The quarters that blasted Irishman assigned to her. She didn't really want them, but they were a better place to think than the Brig. She knew that the omnipresent security detail was just outside the door.

She had been sitting at the desk enjoying a cup of purple tea from her homeland. She reclined wearing traditional garb of Kenya and she stared at the Starfleet uniform that hung on the wall. It was her old uniform and one that she had abandoned and thought that she would never see again. Makeba stood up and began to pace she was trying to make heads or tails of what was happening to both her and her friends. "How? How could I have been so blind. Everyone is using us, and all we want is for people to have the right to not be used." She spoke to the empty room and then chuckled. "Rodney Leyton is marching the Maquis off a cliff. He does not care if we live or die so long as he gets what he wants. What is worse is the only way to stop him is to go back to the organization that birthed him, that has people like O Flannagain..." Her voice trailed off as her thoughts wandered to the Pioneer's XO, and she realized that the only reason she hated him was that he was right.

Outside the quarters on Deck 2 usually given to VIP visitors stood two Security Guards. They had gotten to know Makeba fairly well over the past few months as they usually were assigned her detail. At the moment they were both leaning against the bulkhead and chatting nonchalantly. The sound of footsteps followed by the image of Commander Quinn O Flannagain coming around the corner caused the two men to scramble to attention. "Good afternoon sir!"

"Afternoon, at ease guys." Quinn said, as he put down his data pad for the moment. Before he tapped on the room intercom, he looked over to one of the guards. "Any issues to report?" He asked, being a little surprised, that Makeba, had been a model prisoner. He was impressed by her. What was not clear to him was, was this a ruse or sincerity.

Both men visibly relaxed at the order to at ease. They liked their XO he was an approachable man, the guards just wish they had something to actually report. "Actually and surprisingly no sir. It seems that the past three days she has become quite the model prisoner. Prior to that she was her normal argumentative self. However, she took a walk on Empok Nor with Ensign Nguyen and when she came back she was a perfect little inmate. Since returning she requested to be brought here and has not left since. Every few hours we step in to make sure that she is okay. It has been that quiet." The larger of the two guards reported.

"Thanks." Quinn said, as he tapped on the intercom to her room. For a moment, he felt a little guilty to show up unannounced, but that was part of the deal. He was allowed to do random interval checks on her. So was the Captain for that matter. As he waited for a response, he stared to wonder what Makeba and that ensign spoke about, to make her change her perspective. Quinn was a little worried, maybe this was a ruse. But then again, maybe the ensign, got her to change her heart. Not be so cold, and ruthless.

Makeba was deep in thought and brooding, she had been brooding since she returned and she knew it. What's more she hated it. Makeba Brown was not the type to brood she would rather attack issues head on. But there was the issue she had no idea where to attack. The sound of the door chime snapped her out of her thoughts. It must be the oaf of a guard making sure that I am alive again. I wish they would just leave me be. She thought. "Come on in, privacy is simply an illusion." She called toward the door. When the hissed open and the image of Quinn was before her Makeba was not sure if she should scream or formally request reinstatement.

"Miss Brown." Quinn simply said, as he walked into her quarters. He noticed how tidy and organized the room was. "You have appeared to settle in nicely." He said, as she walked over to the sofa and took a seat, without asking her first. He was testing her reaction responses. It was a little rude of him, and he hated doing it. But he needed to know, how sincere she was about reform.

Keebs was going to mention that typically one requests entrance to another's quarters before entering. However, she then realized that this was just another prison cell. Albeit one without a force-field. "The bed here is a bit more comfortable then the shelf in the Brig. I would offer you something to eat or drink, but the replicators have been locked out." She adjusted the kanga she was wearing as she spoke. "So to what do I owe the honor, or is this simply a check to make sure the inmate has not gone insane." Her voice oozed sarcasm but there was less edge in it. The anger was there but it was no longer directed at Quinn.

"I'll have Ops look at removing the lockout to your replicator. Thank you for the offer." Quinn said in a cool and collected voice. He continued to look around. Quinn decided not to waste to much of her time. Her room was in order, no reason to go into a full inspection. "Captain Tremble speaks very highly of your performance, on the Pioneer."

"It helps to have a common enemy..." Makeba smirked for a moment as she thought about everything she wanted to say. There was so much, but rather then speak her mind she decided to play his game for a moment and see where it got her. "Sir, permission to speak freely." Technically since she never resigned her commission nor was she court martialed she was still and active officer and he outranked her.

Quinn wondered, how loosely she would speak, if he said yes. Quinn could not help, but make this a test on her, to see how far she had come. He still had his doubts about her. But the second officer, and a couple other department heads, were singing her praises. "Granted." Quinn told her. This was now her chance to hang herself, or to prove to him, that she had changed.

When he granted her permission she began as calmly as she could. "You and I have something in common. We are both people of action. As such we both smell a rat when one is present. I don't know about you but lately I have smelt nothing but a big rat. Someone somewhere is pulling all of our strings. Starfleet, The Maquis, Cardassians all of us. I frakkin hate it."

"I assume, you have began to look into this?" Quinn said, playing along with her. But he was skeptical of her response. Was she trying to create common ground, in order to set him up? He was not sure, but he would find out. Quinn deep down agreed with her, there was a rat, a mole. Someone was leaking information. His first suspicion was her.

"Indeed I have..." She smiled proudly, for she was happy that she knew the route he would take. "...With all due respect to you and your people there are places that I can get, and information that I can get that you cannot. I am sure you are aware of Leyton and Prenar. The former seems to be running the Maquis and the latter the Obsidian Order. However, what you may have not known is that they are working together. I have learned through Maquis channels that the two originally met somewhere in Breen space about six months after the Dominion War was officially over. The forged a pact to mutually return to power. Leyton would use what was left of the Maquis to harry Starfleet and the CDF. His goal was to show the CDF that Starfleet could not protect Cardassia and get Cardassia to force Starfleet out of their space. Thereby creating a rift between the two powers. The lynch in this pin would be Prenar he would be using his assets to take down the Maquis here and there to show that only the Order could protect Cardassia."

Makeba paused and looked toward Quinn. She wanted to make sure he was still with her on all she had said. More than that she wanted to gauge if he believed her. He had to believe her if they were to make things right, and if she was going to tell him the rest of it.

"That's a lot of intelligence, question why share it now, at this very moment?" Quinn asked, in a calm and collected voice, some of that information. He knew, a lot of the information she had provided was true. He was not sure if unknown was true, and if he should pass it along to the Federation. Could she be trusted? That was the question, he still had to figure out.

She squinted at him, he was testing her and now she knew it. She also knew that if she were to succeed in saving her friends she would have to pass his test. "I have come to the realization. That while there are a lot of problems with the organization that we call Starfleet, not everyone within it is part of the problem. Also, if I am to be part of the solution and save my friends then I need to stop being part of the problem." Her voice was full of emotion but her face showed how hard it was for to say what she had said. Makeba Brown had nothing without her pride, and this was bruising that pride something awful.

"An objective perspective from you, that is very promising Miss Brown. Promising enough, that I have spoken to the captain, and the other department heads. Since we have been utilizing your services once again. We have decided to remove the shackles, so to speak. I am going to assign you to Intelligence, you will report to Warrant Officer Jayna, she will be your new commanding officer. I am placing you back into Starfleet as a Specialist, a step up from observer." Quinn told her. He was not ready to let her completely off the hook yet. However, he was giving her more liberties. "Your new CO, will fill you in on your new role on the Pioneer." He said, waiting to see what Makeba said, in response.

The idea of coming back to Starfleet had been playing around in her head. However, she operated under the impression that she would come back as on officer. Makeba was not fond of coming back as an enlisted. In fact she thought that it might hinder what she wanted to accomplish. She let the idea simmer in her head for the moment. "I have never been court martialed, nor have I resigned my commission. May I ask why, should I choose to accept, would I be a Specialist?" Makeba was pretty sure she knew the answer. Quinn did not trust her, as she was still a bit unsure of him. However, she wanted to see where his mind was.

"To put it mildly. You have to earn back the trust that was lost. You are on the right path Miss Brown. Will all you have accomplished" Quinn started to say, as he went on. "I have plans for you, that will take you down a new career path with Starfleet." Quinn told her. He was still not sure, if he could trust her. But he was extending out an olive branch.

The New Maquis was rife with stories of Starfleet Officers who were taken under someone's wing and returned to grace within the fleet. Makeba was wondering if she was about to become one of those stories. "Before I give you an official answer I do have two more questions for you if I may. Then of course I will be happy to tell you more of what I know. First what plans are these that you have? Next, how would you explain a full Lieutenant being demoted from Lieutenant?"

"I would not have to explain it, what I have planned for you, will not be available in the public records. Your entire record will be sealed, your file will be classified, beyond level 10." Quinn pointed out to her. His plan was to have her join the intelligence community. He had been forming a special team, to investigate what happened to the USS Pioneer, and she could play a key role in it, and if she was a team player, there was a deep space infiltration assignment, he had in mind for her. One that he was recently read into.

The gray shirts, now that was something that Makeba never thought she would be one of. In the moment she realized that Quinn was not going to elaborate unless she agreed to his terms. She had to trust someone, and she may as well start with him. But first she had to save her friends, stop Leyton. "Alright Commander you got yourself a spook. I have one condition, before I am sent off to make the galaxy safe for the Federation, I must save my friends from themselves. And in that endeavor we are in it together."

"Fantastic, how could are your hand to hand and close quarters combat tactics?" Quinn asked. He knew, she had been a freedom fighter, she might have gotten some training from that, and some from the time she was a starfleet officer. But for what he in mind, he was going to send her to train with Tremble Marines.

"I have been in a scrap or two. I am advanced trained in a number of martial arts including the Mok Bara. You going to tell me what you have planned or should I go get fitted for a uniform. Also, are you sure your good Captain is going to agree to this" Makeba began to file her nails nonchalantly as she spoke.

"I'm glad to hear you have some combat training. We are going to enhance your training. I want you to work with the marines, on combat tactics. Fair warning, he is really good. And he may be hard, but his good and is a fair." Quinn said. He knew that she had worked with him in the past.

"Aye sir... Report to Tremble... Oh Goody..." She said with a smirk and a mock salute. "...And what you will contact me when the time is right." She continued with a hint of sarcasm and a dig at the covert side of things.

"Miss Brown, if you prefer to keep your current arrangement, continue to mock this opportunity. You discover it will soon evaporate." Quinn suggested to her, in a clear tone, that was very monotone. He did not want her to see that her mocking him, was only pissing him off.

She was not happy with the arrangement but she also saw it as the only way that any of her friends would get out of this alive. Whelp, looks like I am going to have to swallow my pride for a moment. But you have not won O Flannigain. Makeba thought. Outwardly her eyes narrowed as she thought. She pursed her lips before she spoke. "Yes sir! When can we get started?"

"Immediately, I will notify Captain Tremble, to begin your training at once. This is a golden opportunity for you. And you have earned this right, for a second chance. The crew of the Pioneer, has a lot of trust in you." Quinn reminded her. Encase she forgot, why she was given this chance.

For the moment Makeba Brown felt a small amount of pride in what he had said. She actually wanted to prove that she was worthy of that trust, the question was had the fleet changed. Was the Pioneer special, well she would find out. "Yes sir, and thank you sir. I will try my best to be worthy of that trust." She knew that was what he wanted to hear, but she also knew that she wanted to be worthy.

"I'll let you be, but make sure to report in with Captain Tremble, by 1400 hours." Quinn said, as he walked out of her quarters. "I'll have operations remove the restrictions to the replicators, but your communications will be monitored by securty." He told her, as he left the room. He was taking a big risk, but he needed some assurances, something more for her to work on. She was on the right path. The scene starts to fade.


Joint post by;

Commander Quinn Ó Flannagáin
Executive Officer, USS Pioneer


Makeba Brown
Maquis Tactical Officer

 

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