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Commissioned for Leadership

Posted on Monday July 20th, 2020 @ 11:06pm by Commander Tharia sh'Elas & Ensign Jocelyn Zemke

Mission: Let The Good Times Roll
Location: Captain's Ready Room
Timeline: Day 13 at 0745

Jocelyn had completed the night shift and restored power to the waste disposal system in the lower decks. She had manged to return to her quarters to spruce up, change uniforms, and splash her face with cold water. In her excitement, she even managed to send a brief note to her family back home, informing them of the good news which had only recently crossed her radar. Now it was time to meet with the Captain, as Commander Winters had ordered.

The trek to the Captain's ready room was the longest journey she had made so far in 22 years of life. Each leg of the journey through corridors and up the turbolift seemed like a semester back at the Academy. She nodded to each officer and enlisted personnel in the corridors, walking with brisk purpose. She breathed deeply through her mouth as the doors of the lift opened on the bridge. She closed her mouth and breathed out her nose, taking her first step on the bridge. There were several familiar faces that greeted her with a nod, and she was sure to reciprocate each continuing in haste towards the Captains Ready Room. She composed herself, staking one last deep breath, and pushed the door chime.

There was a moment of silence until a muffled voice from within granted the visitor entrance to the private office.

The doors opened and Zemke took three cautious steps in the doorway. She leaned in, like a child spying from around the corner. She attempted to restrain the grin covered her face. "Is this a good time Captain?" She bit her lower right lip, attempting to quell excitement into simple curious inquiry. She was well aware that the Captain likely had many important things to attend to, and hated to be taking precious time that could be better spent elsewhere.

Rising to her feet, Commander sh'Elas gave the visitor a smile as she gestured to the sofa area on the starboard side bulkhead. "It's always a good time for good news," the Andorian grinned, stepping around the side of her desk and offering a hand to the Ensign. "I'm sorry we haven't spent any time together, Ensign, but welcome to the day shift."

Jocelyn extended her hand in return, reciprocating a sturdy shake. "Thank you Captain. I still don't have the words to thoroughly express my gratitude for this opportunity." Jocelyn was all smiles, beaming with excitement. "I will do my best, not to disappoint." She added the last line, wanting to retain some sense of humility. The standard 'I won't let you down' always seemed a bit pompous. "Any advice to a young and eager Ensign?"

"Listen to the bridge officers around you," sh'Elas told as she took her own seat and got comfortable, draping one knee over the other as she adjusted her posture. "We have a variety of experienced crewmembers running the show here and they have a lot to offer eager young Ensign's such as yourself," the Andorian smiled.

"I will certainly tap into that wealth of wisdom and experience." Jocelyn breathed easy as rapport developed between them. She was grateful for the Captain's calming and welcoming presence, as this was her first significant interaction with her, and the first of many with fellow department heads. "If you don't mind me asking, I would love to know what lessons you have found most valuable throughout your career?" Jocelyn wasn't entirely sure the question captured the heart of what she wanted to know. She was genuinely interested to know what a Captain felt was most important and served well in commanding a starship.

That was a tough question for a first time commander, and it took the Andorian a few minutes to come up with an answer. "Someone once told me that the first duty of every Starfleet officer is to the truth, whether it's scientific truth or historical truth or personal truth. It is the guiding principle on which Starfleet is based. Be true to yourself, your beliefs and your morals and you'll make an excellent Starfleet officer," she revealed, "Starfleet doesn't want officers that will blindly follow orders without analysing the situation at hand. I've learnt that the hard way, even recently."

Jocelyn smiled, followed by an enthusiastic nod. "That is profound advice Captain," she voiced aloud, looking down in a contemplative fashion. "I am going to have to think on that one for awhile." Her mind was probing the notion of 'truth' as if it was new software, something to be tested and understood both at the surface, in application, and at it's depths, line by line of code. She transferred her thoughts to working memory, something worthwhile to ponder while performing routine maintenance.

She returned her gaze to the Captain. "I am looking forward to this new assignment, and that lessons that I will learn from you and the command team." She paused, tempted to stay and explore such philosophical propositions, but duty called.

"Alas, your time with me will be brief Ensign," the Commander revealed as she decided it was time to start telling the crew of her decision to leave the Ulysses upon the ship's arrival at the Starbase. "When we arrive at Beta Antares, the crew will be split. Some will be given a choice, whilst others will be transferred. As a member of the senior staff, albeit a new member, you will have the choice of remaining on the Ulysses as it undergoes a significant period of analysis, or transferring to one of the new Polaris-class explorers that are docked and looking for crew," she broke the news to her young subordinate, "but either way, I will be leaving. I've been offered a position on Admiral Azulas' staff, and I've accepted."

"Congratulations Captain!" Jocelyn congratulated, somewhat disappointed that this brief introduction would be soon followed by transition. "I'm glad we got this chance to meet, you have given me a lot to think about." There was grief stricken tone amid her genuine excitement. Change was inevitable, she learned that lesson when her father passed, but recent changes were moving way to fast. "And, it looks like I'll have even more to think about in the coming days."

Rising to her feet, the Captain offered a hand to the Ensign once again, this time in signalling the conclusion of their meeting. "I'd appreciate it if you kept the news under wraps for a few days," the Andorian smiled, "that way I can tell the majority of people when the time is right."

"Affirmative," Jocelyn nodded, understanding the importance of timely announcements. She reciprocated the hand shake, feeling as though she was shaking the famous Jean-Luc Picard. This was her first experience with the departure of a captain, but she was sure the experience was anxiety ridden for many, especially the senior staff. "I'd love to be able to follow up...maybe share some of my own thoughts as I advance in my career."

"I'm always at the end of a communications relay," the Commander smiled, "just might take a day or two because of distance," she laughed a little as she walked around the side of her desk again and watched the Ensign head for the door.

"Thank you again Captain. And all the best." Jocelyn concluded the briefing exiting the ready room. She turned her attention to the PADD with most recent updates from her department and Lieutenant Wilson.

 

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