AT/E03 - Utopia Planitia R&D Station: Crew Living Area
Posted Star Date 22205.12 @ 07:01 (07:01 AM)
The Crew Living building exists as a separate structure from the Primary Research Facility – connected by a raised walkway. The ground and second levels are for crew living, while the third level houses the Administration offices.
At ground level are the many facilities that make living within a research station bearable. A Mess Hall provides hot food, a communal gathering space, and acts as an emergency shelter with extra shielding for protection. Recreational facilities also are on the main level and include – holosuites, an arboretum, a small gymnasium with a holographic running track, small swimming pool with steam room and sauna, a library, and commercial replication stations. A medical facility, transporter room, and security detachment are also on the main level.
On the second floor are the living quarters. Many are standard suites with amenities that include living areas and ensuites in addition to bedrooms. A small portion are larger quarters – usually located on the outer edge of the floor – which have multiple small rooms that include a view. All living quarters have individual environmental control.
Posted Star Date 22205.12 @ 07:11 (07:11 AM)
== Mess Hall ==
Lieutenant Kersel paced back and forth near the entrance to the mess hall, silently cursing under his breath about the situation. At one point he stopped, looked up toward the gathered staff within the mess hall, then muttered to himself again. As Chief of Security, he felt compelled to do something. But Commander Sakht was insistent that staff remain in the crew building until an all-clear was signaled. Which was the part that bothered the Kobheerian – they couldn’t do an all-clear without investigating. And his team couldn’t investigate if they were restricted from entering the research facility.
It was fortunate that a large number of engineers and researchers were away at a conference. However, the timing of it all was too perfect for Kersel. Whoever had stolen the data had to have known that it was a prime chance to steal with so many people away – the hallways mostly empty compared to how it normally was. The bald, brawny, six-foot security chief balled his hands into fists. He wanted to punch something. But that would only make the situation worse.
Then he felt bad for his security team. Kersel was given strict orders by Commander Sakht to keep the theft quiet, even from his own officers. It was a slap in the face for the Lieutenant – who only wanted a chance to redeem himself, and his team. As he looked over some of the faces who he trusted most, Kersel couldn’t help but feel doubt starting to seep into his feelings. To him, whoever did it had to have knowledge of how security did their work. Which meant that those most trusted were also the most probable suspects.
People in the mess hall couldn’t hear Kersel growl over the din of the talk that was happening. Most of the staff worried that a containment failure of the reactor had happened. Others worried that one of the more energetic experiments might have created a quantum mechanical anomaly. That was something else that annoyed the Kobheerian too – all he ever heard about was quantum somethings. It wasn’t enough to make him transfer, even if he did dream of it occasionally.
Giving a final irritated huff, the Lieutenant began to return to the fold with the rest of the staff. It was starting to sound like a few people were on the edge of panic, and so Kersel reassured them the best he could with his harsh, guttural voice. He stopped when he realized he had nearly pushed one of the staff to tears. He moved along and tried to find some of his subordinates. One Miles Grant stood out to him. The Midshipman hadn’t been with the station for very long, and it was intended to be a temporary assignment. Though Kersel had heard that before – and had seen officers try to carve careers out of babysitting doctors and scientists. It seemed worse when he realized he was one of those people.
“Grant!” Kersel called out to the Midshipman.
“Come over here a moment.”
Kersel waited until Miles found his way, and then motioned for them to walk together.
“I have a question for you,” the security chief spoke softly, “are you one of those people who gossip and leak details to people? You probably know the sort. In fact, we have a few on staff.”
He waited for an answer from Miles before continuing.
“I feel like I can trust you. At a time when I’m feeling suspicious. I need someone that I can count on.”
Kersel had walked back over to the spot he had been shadowing for some time, near the entrance to the mess hall.
“The situation – we might not get a real chance to investigate it properly. I’m getting the feeling that we are going to be sidelined by the Commander. If that happens, I need you to be my eyes and ears. This incident that has happened – someone intentionally caused it. But we must figure this out before anyone else, to save the team and our reputation.”
“Whatever happens, keep me notified with what you find out. Even if it seems minor. Even if you suspect someone we trust.”
It was hard for the security chief to get his point across without saying what it was that happened. Kersel almost said it, but he waited to see how Miles felt about the huge responsibility that had just dropped in his lap – without giving him the full story.
== tag Grant ==
Posted Star Date 22205.12 @ 12:30 (12:30 PM)
This was not where Miles had been thinking when he would be assigned when he graduated the Academy. Utopia Planitia, Mars. The hotbed of technological advancements at Star Fleet. This was where new ship classes were brought to life. Where new Warp Drives, defense systems, Medical advances, and the like, most probably had a start here. And, from things he had heard some fellow former Cadets, acting as Security here would be a cushion job, amounting to little more than babysitting.
Miles hated the thought.
Yet, here he was, 2 weeks....well, 12 days, into this quote-unquote "Temporary Assignment", and felt almost...trapped. Most of the assignment thus far had been orientation: station tour, safety classes, proficiency tests. Most things he had already handled at the Academy. But, Utopia Planitia was considered a Special Assignment, so he still had to endure it. And he had finally started actual work rotations within the last two days, so at least he was now "on schedule".
He couldn't fault his current Department Head, Lieutenant Kersel. The man was strict, but fair, and had run, at least to Miles' point of view, a pretty efficient Department. That didn't mean it was perfect. It still had it's....loose screws, so to speak. But, Miles elected that, as long as things were getting done, he wouldn't concern himself with that. That was Lieutenant Kersel's job.
As it was, the Chief of Security was currently in the mess hall, where Miles had just finished his meal before he was due back on duty. Kersel looked, at least to Miles, irritated. Miles could understand. From the short amount of time here, he had been able to discern something was amiss. Especially due to Security being restricted in their duties and places they could go. Sure, there was the usual "lab incident" excuse that had been very prominent when explaining why they couldn't do their normal scientist babysitting, but something still felt off.
"Grant!" the voice of his Chief of Security broke Miles' thoughts. Surprisingly, though his last name was fairly common, Miles was the only Grant assigned, at least within Security. Standing and bringing himself to attention, Miles looked over to his Senior Officer. "Come over here a moment."
Miles did as ordered, making his way over to Kersel. Thoughts ran in his head about the reason for being summoned, but knew Kersel would explain in due time, so focused on listening to the other man. Once Miles had reached Kersel, the Security Chief motioned for Miles to walk with him, which Miles did, before Kersel spoke.
“I have a question for you,” the security chief spoke softly, honestly surprising Miles with that fact, “are you one of those people who gossip and leak details to people? You probably know the sort. In fact, we have a few on staff.”
Miles did know there were some gossips on staff. The Senior Supply Officer Lisasa was probably the biggest. Less than 2 weeks on, and Miles already knew the name. Which, given the why Miles knew, was not a good thing.
"No, sir," Miles responded. "Our job is not to gossip, and leaking details directly opposes our duty." Having gotten an answer, Kersel continued.
“I feel like I can trust you. At a time when I’m feeling suspicious. I need someone that I can count on.”
By this point, they had come near the entrance to the mess hall. Miles' eyebrows were furrowed in concentration as the Security Chief explained things.
“The situation – we might not get a real chance to investigate it properly. I’m getting the feeling that we are going to be sidelined by the Commander. If that happens, I need you to be my eyes and ears. This incident that has happened – someone intentionally caused it. But we must figure this out before anyone else, to save the team and our reputation.” Miles nodded that he understood.
“Whatever happens, keep me notified with what you find out. Even if it seems minor. Even if you suspect someone we trust.” This was serious. Miles wasn't being given all the details, but...
"I understand, sir," he replied. "Clearly there's more to this than you're saying...or rather, more than what you're allowed to say." Miles paused for moment. "But you have my word, sir. I'll see what I hear, or that I manage to dig up myself."
After anything further the Security Chief had to say, and once Miles was dismissed, Miles considered his options. After just a moment, he had an idea. One he wasn't overly fond of, because it would be out of his comfort zone, but he knew it could lead to some information.
He approached some of his crewmates, smiled lightly as he gave them a wave.
"Hey, does anyone know where I can find Lisasa?" he asked.
==Tag. GM input: Any further response from Kersel? If so, I can back post. Also, reply on Lisasa's location?==
Posted Star Date 22205.15 @ 07:57 (07:57 AM)
== Mess Hall ==
Kersel seemed satisfied with the response from Grant – and it looked as though the Lieutenant was just a little happier than before. The Chief of Security went so far as to give Miles a pat on the back.
“Good. I’m glad to hear it,” Kersel said, before departing for the kitchen.
There were a few separate pockets of staff, and even some isolated individuals within the Mess Hall. The groups were busy chatting to each other about the drama of the lockdown. Not all of it was gossip, but understandable anxiety. Others were actively upset at having to wait to get back to their research. Miles knew that many of the researchers were driven personality types – sometimes so much that they missed meals and sleep. That was even more likely to happen when they neared what they thought might be a breakthrough.
The closest crewmates to Miles were the two Bynar civilian contractors on staff – 0110 and 0111. When Miles waved, 0110 and 0111 turned and faced each other but said nothing at first. They then turned in unison before 0110 gave a muted wave back. When the question was asked they conferred with each other before giving their answer.
“Yes Lisasa will be…”
“…in the arboretum.”
“Do you know…”
“…what is happening?”
Edited by GM-19, Star Date 22205.15 @ 07:59 (07:59 AM).
Posted Star Date 22205.16 @ 19:24 (07:24 PM)
Miles hadn't really been thinking when he was approaching crewmates on the whereabouts of Lisasa. So, when he came up to the two Bynar, who, from his recollection were civilian contractors, he knew he had to stay focused. If not, the way Bynar talked could easily confuse a person. As it were, he had been lucky there had been Bynar amongst Cadets, so he had practice.
There was a moment after Miles asked his question that there seemed to be a moment of contemplation among the pair. However, it wasn't overly long, and they soon responded.
“Yes Lisasa will be…”
“…in the arboretum.”
“Do you know…”
“…what is happening?
Miles considered how best to go about this. He didn't want to lie, but knew he could...omit...information and still hold good repertoire among the crew once everything settled. He didn't think long on his response, however, and had an answer for the pair.
"Thank you for informing me," Miles replied. "As Lisasa is the senior supply officer, I just have to ask about a few things." He gave a pause before moving on to answer the next question. "As far as what's happening...I'm not sure. Most prevalent explanation I've heard is some sort of lab incident, but the details are above my pay grade." He said the last part in a sort of jest way to hopefully ease any worry or concerns. He wasn't a fan of not being serious while on duty, but this was a special circumstance....and he wasn't technically considered "on duty" as far as his schedule went, and he needed others to feel less worried about the current situation.
Thanking the Bynar again, Miles took his leave to head to the Arboretum. It wouldn't take long, as the arboretum was on the same floor as the Mess Hall. When he got there, he began to look around, as if he wasn't specifically looking for anyone or anything, just enjoying the room. However, he did keep his eyes peeled for Lisasa.
==GM input: Is Miles able to locate Lisasa in the arboretum?==
Posted Star Date 22205.20 @ 02:06 (02:06 AM)
All the corridors were empty and the distance was short, so it did not take Grant long to reach the arboretum. It was filled with many different types of plants making the air slightly more humid than other sections of the living areas. Even with all the foliage, it did not take Miles long to spot Lisasa – though she was not alone.
The Risian Lieutenant ran fingers through her blonde hair as she and another spoke in front of a stand of tropical flowers. Grant would recognize the other officer as Ebor – a short-tempered Ornaran research engineer. They stood close together – closer than most acquaintances would. The conversation seemed less than amicable though, with Ebor being constantly shushed by Lisasa and told to keep his voice down. Ebor was animated, talking as much with his hands and arms as his mouth. Lisasa seemed conciliatory and her voice was softly comforting.
Whatever was being said between the two – except for the occasional outburst – Miles was too far away to hear and understand the conversation. Though Miles hadn’t been spotted yet. There were a few places that Grant could sneak up on the couple to get a better listen. But of the paths he could take to concealment, none of them could assure that he wouldn’t be seen as he moved toward them.
“It’s done! He must listen now!” Ebor was again loud enough to be heard.
Lisasa hushed the man again and closed the distance – placing a finger on Ebor’s lips. He seemed to settle while the two remained close to one another. There was still some talking afterward, though the engineer was visibly calmer from Lisasa’s affectations.
Posted Star Date 22205.20 @ 19:11 (07:11 PM)
It didn't take Miles long to locate Lisasa. But, unfortunately, she wasn't alone. Miles noted the presence of Ebor, one of the research engineers. Miles sighed, as this threw off his plan somewhat. Though, their body language gave him pause. They were close, but not speaking amicably.
Even though Miles could only make out words that grew above a certain level, he couldn't really determine the subject they were discussing. That was troubling, as they could just as easily be having a lover's quarrel and little else. Even still, he needed information, and Lisasa was his best source.
"It's done! He must listen now!" Ebor said, close enough that Miles was able to hear. Now, two big questions crossed Miles mind: What's done and who is he? He noted Lisasa was able to calm Ebor down some. At this point, Miles decided to make his presence known. He stepped out from nearby.
"Is everything alright here?" Miles asked, sounding as neutral as possible. "I heard some shouting and wanting to make sure nothing was wrong." Of course, Miles was already in uniform, as his shift was due to start soon, so he hoped they understood the situation as a Security Officer doing their job and not just as someone snooping around.
==Tag. GM input: Response from the pair?==
Posted Star Date 22205.22 @ 06:03 (06:03 AM)
Ebor turned toward Miles instantly with a glower on his face and his hands curled into fists.
“Spying on two people trying to have a private conversation rookie?”
Ebor took a step toward Miles, but the engineer didn’t get far. Lisasa placed a hand gently on his shoulder and it stopped him in his tracks, causing him to turn his head slightly to the side – fists still clenched. Making her way around him, Lisasa stood in front of Ebor putting herself between him and Miles.
“Midshipman Grant,” Lisasa said with an easy smile, but a conciliatory tone.
“Good to see you. Everything is fine, just helping a friend through some things. Isn’t that right Ebor?”
“Right,” Ebor’s words were said begrudgingly – but his hands opened.
“I know we are supposed to be in the mess hall, but there is enough tension in there already with Kersel stomping around, wouldn’t you agree?” Lisasa spoke up again.
“And we aren’t supposed to visit in quarters during lockdowns, so we came to the arboretum to talk through some things. We’ve probably stayed here too long though. Ebor, how about you return to your quarters? Maybe have some of that Jestral tea that you got during the gift exchange last Christmas.”
Still perturbed but clearly not wanting to fight with Lisasa, Ebor agreed solemnly and started toward the exit. There was a moment that he passed near to Miles almost bumping into the midshipman – but at the last minute he thought better of it and stepped around Grant. Once the Ornaran left the gardens, Lisasa piped up.
“I have a suspicion that you weren’t just wandering around during a lockdown and happened to hear a raised voice. And Kersel wouldn’t have let you out of the mess hall if he didn’t put you up to something. That leaves you looking for me,” the Risan supply officer gave a playful laugh.
“What can I help with?”