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Boldly going

Posted on Wed Jun 3rd, 2020 @ 4:29am by Lieutenant Seleya Qellar PhD & Jerant van Rijn

Mission: Character Development
Location: Main Engineering
954 words - 1.9 OF Standard Post Measure

The ship was heaven. Jerant bounced his way through the corridors at a full run, smoothly dodging the few people that were about. He shot into a hatch, slid a few decks down along the ladders, then crawl-ran through a horizontal tube towards the next ladder.

He felt like a monkey and he grinned from ear to ear as he started to pant for breath. His shirt was sticking to his torso and his hair was plastered to his face as he finally knocked a hatch open and leapt from it towards a railing. He wasn't quite paying attention to his exact location, too wrapped up in his freerunning exercise. He noticed the bright glowing light from the corner of his eyes as he leapt along the balustrade, but his mind didn't connect the pulsating light to the warp core.

It didn't take a Romulan's hearing to detect the hatch swinging open, but it certainly caught her attention faster than everyone else. Most of the crewmembers who'd bothered to look turned away almost immediately when they saw it was one of their own. Not Seleya. Instead, she narrowed her eyes at him. Was this some sort of twisted payback for her visit to the counselor's office, bursting into engineering unannounced?

"Are you lost, is some new form of aggressive counseling, or do you always refuse to enter a room through the proper door?" she asked, both raising and projecting her voice at him.

Startled by the voice, Jerant missed his swing and dropped to the deck. "Ow," he complained as he connected hard with the deckplating and rolled with his fall. "I'm not a counselor," he muttered as he crawled to his feet, trying to dust off his sweaty body, "I don't even know where I am, I was just running."

"That seems like a good way to get killed," Seleya remarked derisively. "Suppose you'd kicked open the hatch to the primary reactor? Or the deuterium stores? Or an unshielded portion of the nacelles?"

"Oh I wouldn't go that far up," Jerant countered as he took in his surroundings, "and I'm sure such areas are locked and preventing someone without clearance to get in to begin with?"

"Accidents happen," Seleya said, almost a little suggestively. "I would appreciate it if you'd refrain from running in conduits when there's a perfectly functional holodeck and corridors for you to use. There are gyms on deck three and deck nine, if you're so inclined to avail yourself of them. The Jefferies tubes are closed to thru traffic for a reason - they house sensitive equipment that's easily damaged."

"Then they ought to be locked for unauthorised people," Jerant shot back, "I see people crawl through them all the time, and they don't really seem to be on duty either. So why can they go through there, but not me? Is it because I'm a civilian? Because no-one high up there told me I couldn't use the tubes for exercise purposes. I just took a wrong turn, that's all. You make it seem like I intended to end up here."

"I'm not concerned with your intentions; I'm concerned with your present whereabouts and the route you took to get here," Seleya said. She turned away from him and moved to a nearby engineering station, leaving her back to him as she spoke. "If you see people 'crawl through' anything on this ship, they're doing so for a purpose. I am telling you that you cannot use 'the tubes' for exercise. This is a Starfleet vessel, not a free-range gymnasium. There are designated areas for that sort of activity." She paused, stretched upright, and turned to him with a single arched eyebrow. "Or do you consider yourself privileged enough to do whatever you like?"

"I'm a civilian," Jerant pointed out, "I don't have a hell of a lot of privileges. But I've never been given issue before about running around the ship. Not that I've gotten into restricted areas before. I'll admit that this was actually the first time." He shrugged. "Unless there are projects that need an interpreter, I don't have much to do while Savin is off having fun. Assuming he's having fun, I try not to pry into his feelings and thoughts unless I have to for communication purposes." He shrugged again. "I suppose I'm not so unwelcome here, because you haven't thrown me out yet." He smirked at her with a touch of defiance, knowing full well she had the authority to do exactly that.

"On the contrary," she said, turning to face him while gesturing to the engineering station where she'd just been accessing the computer system. "I've alerted security to your presence and asked them to escort you out of a sensitive area of the ship. A matter of protocol, you see. No hard feelings."

"You could've just told me to get out of here from the get go, instead of engaging me," the Betazoid said, shrugging slightly. "There's no need for security, I'm going already."

"I believe I have a few very engaging exercise holo-programs from the Imperial War Academy somewhere around. I'll look for them and send them along. Perhaps they'll keep you busier on the holodeck," Seleya said, standing perfectly still and watching him as he left. She cracked a smile and gave a little wave, which seemed looked a bit devious whether she'd meant it to or not.

"Thanks, I appreciate that." He smirked at her over his shoulder. "I sure do like a challenge," he said before the door closed behind him.

"Likewise," she replied, though he'd long gone.

Jerant van Rijn
Counselor's Assistant
pnpc Savin

Lieutenant Seleya Qellar, PhD
Chief Engineer
USS Athena


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