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EPI: S [D03|2100] A most furtive debrief

[ Lt. Cmdr. Rutherford | Diplomatic Council | Deck 02 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy ] attn: @Ellen Fitz @Number6 @Brutus @Nesota Kynnovan

Samantha had settled into the considerable calm of the meeting room adjacent to the Diplomatic Council a few minutes ago. Perched behind the long conference table, in front of the large viewscreen giving her silhouette a backlit glow, going through the preliminary reports of her department. It had been a few days, since the team had come together to talk about the mission ahead, and even though that wouldn’t have been unusual under normal operation, given the sheer amount of action of the past hours alone, it almost felt as if a year had passed. So, it was only prudent to call everyone together again, go over the happenings and adjust from there. Because if the random bits of information from the past few days about the individual missions under her department’s supervision, then not everything was running as smoothly as it could have. And the commander was a stickler for a well-oiled machine where everyone gave their best. Discourse, among diplomats, was about as bad as a shooting among security forces. They should all possess the tools to avoid such dilemmas.

Letting the PADD settle onto the table a little too exhaustedly, the slim device skidded across the smooth surface an inch or two, away from her delicate digits. But it was a notion that didn’t really register all too much, as manicured nails came to pluck idly on peach-colored petals, eliciting the faintest of red stain. Revealing the gentle ivory confined beyond, as they tugged and pinched, the blonde contemplated the grander ramifications of recent events. The very fact that the Klingon situation seemed to be resolved and an alliance forged, only serving as a minor comfort, in light of the grander threat. But it was a step forward none the less. Maybe it would’ve been prudent to check with Dr. Nicander, on what the demise of their Klingon spy had on their grander plans and morale – if that was even possible. Making a mental note she was prepared to follow up on this tangent, albeit not feeling responsible or needed to point this avenue out to the people responsible. She had already gotten the idea that not everyone on the ship was entirely enamored with her proactive approach. Not that it mattered too much to her.

Watching the portal beyond open up, her team slowly assembling, the chief diplomat let them all take seat around the perimeter of the conference room table, white teeth gently plucking at her bottom lip, while icy blue eyes trailed across the individual PADDs being brought to the meeting, watching them settle into their places with their owners beyond. Sucking in her cheeks absent mindedly, promoting her perfect bone structure, Samantha ultimately took a deep breath of contemplation, keeping the air suspended in her heaving chest. She had to focus on herself on the fact that her department had done exemplary work, over the past few days, and the minor hickups should not dictate the overall performance. Albeit having to be addressed. To that end, she leaned forward, letting lapis lazuli orbs rise to the occasion, while her finger intertwined on the table before her. An ominous moment of silence ensued, which she later regretted for being so heavy. But it did a good job at setting the stage.

“I don’t think it would be hyperbolic to say, the past few days have been eventful.” she started out, a gentle rustling of amusement disarming the tense air momentarily. “Against all odds, and the majority of action having taken place in the form of outright fighting, our department has given its best to support the grander cause. A situation that wasn’t ever ideal to perform diplomacy in. But we have adapted, and each and every one of you has contributed in their own realm of capability, to have the department at the front and center of our success as a crew. This victory wouldn’t have been possible without you.” Granted, there was a similar case to be made for all the other departments as well, but the blonde saw it more her duty to inspire her own peers, than the ship as a whole. That kind of responsibility was thankfully above her paygrade. It would’ve already been hard enough to veil her lingering criticism behind flattering compliments, had she not been a diplomat for so many years. Which still was just a bit harder when it was colleagues and subordinates, than an equal at the negotiating table.

“I’ve chosen to let us all come together to express my gratitude to you as a team. And at the same time, we should discuss our issues, as one. So, before I voice my preconceived opinions on our effectiveness, let’s go around to debrief on the events since arriving on Qo’nos.” Letting her pale blue orbs pass expectantly, anyone was allowed to step to the plate first.

Re: EPI: S [D03|2100] A most furtive debrief

Reply #1
[ Lt. Enyd Isolde Madsen | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] attn: @stardust @Number6 @Brutus @Nesota Kynnovan

Most would feel fatigued in this moment, coming to sit in a debriefing after a grueling mission, and yet Enyd still felt a hum of energy pumping in her veins. She drew energy from being around people and even more energy from successful missions. It was going to be torture to sit still long enough to debrief with the rest of the department, but Enyd understood the purpose and necessity and so would override her body’s desire to run and kick and conquer for the time it took to get everyone on the same page as they reflected on the many nuances of the missions that had just taken place. She respected her department head's proactive nature and her genuine desire to ensure the smooth running of the department. And so she would jump when Rutherford called for it and sit, as she was about to do so now, when Rutherford called for that too.

As Enyd took her seat at the conference table, she noted the exhausted look of her department head and heard the heavy sigh. She'd already heard of Commander Fisher's presence in Sickbay and was relieved that the mission Rutherford had taken had been successful as well. While the others took their seats, Enyd retreated inward for but a moment in the ensuing silence, recalling the information Rutherford would likely like shared verbally instead of having to wait for the written report, which would undoubtedly come later. Before she blinked back into the moment, Enyd reminded herself of the importance of commending both Morali and L’Nari. They couldn’t end the meeting without her doing that.

By the time she was back in the moment and looked around, Enyd realized she might’ve missed something in the silence, a nonverbal cue from Rutherford that left some of the department members looking tense. Subtly shaking her head to keep focused, Enyd clasped her fingers together loosely as she mirrored Rutherford’s position, willing the woman to see and feel Enyd’s attention as she opened the floor for report after a generalized commendation. When the floor became available, Enyd waited just long enough to detect that the other department members assumed she’d go first. Seeing this, Enyd gave a quick head nod, signaling she was about to begin.

“We assumed a possible ambush on the southern landing platform, considering the earlier Klingon boarding party. As the Rosalind Franklin landed, on Lieutenant Morali’s suggestion, we vented pressurized gas from the atmospheric thrusters, creating a smokescreen to assist in our disembarking.” Enyd nodded again, subtly moving the fingers of one hand without letting go of the other. “The assassins were, in fact, waiting and very ready even with the smokescreen. As soon as one of our security detail, Ensign McArthur, stepped outside the airlock, an assailant cut off his right arm. Our other security detail, Crewman Hughes, hauled him back inside the Franklin and moved to assist McArthur with emergency aid.” Her eyes skirted towards L’Nari a brief moment, remembering how difficult it was for the Caitian to leave McArthur behind. “But I ordered all available party members to evacuate the shuttle, assessing greater danger in remaining aboard without understanding how many we were up against. Tavek, a member of House K’Tal, and his men cut the ensuing firefight short, having been sent by Councilor K’Tal to intercept the assumed ambush. Some of Tavek’s men also remained behind to look after Ensign McArthur, who had grabbed an emergency medkit after our departure but whose survival of the mission is far more connected to Tavek’s men than his own emergency training.”

Enyd was grateful for Tavek, his men, and Starfleet emergency training, for even with Tavek’s men remaining behind, if McArthur hadn’t had the frame of mind and training to get the medkit started, he likely would’ve bled out before the Klingons could have helped further. She made another note to check in with McArthur in the coming days, see how he was doing, and to personally commend him and Hughes for their bravery on the mission.

Continuing, Enyd nodded towards other members of the department, “While Lieutenant Morali remained in the office Tavek’s men first took us to for his work on the emitters, Ensign L’Nari and myself moved into the Council Chamber on the behest of Councilor K’Tal. It was here that we witnessed Councilor Kopek’s attack on Councilor K’Tal, revealing his Infested nature. We tracked his movements towards Chancellor Martok who, at that time, was completely unaware of Kopek’s nature or the threat. I ordered Ensign L’Nari to assist Council K’Tal if possible while I moved closer to the Chancellor. When it became clear to me that without drawing attention, the Infested was quite likely to succeed in its attack against the Chancellor, I revealed the existence of Martok’s grandson, though without details, and denounced Kopek as being Infested.”

Enyd refused to shy away from the reality, and so after a deep breath, but not one of discomfort, she pressed on.

“I freely admit this was a gamble, and one that nearly saw my head crushed by the Infested, but at the time, I saw no other way of catching the notice of the council members and protecting Martok at the same time. There was a fight, and after I was, uh, removed from the attack range of the Infested,” she figured detailing her body as a thrown projectile could be shared in written form later, “Captain Ives gave me a direct order to defend Martok. Which I did when Gorka attempted to assassinate him soon after the Infested was destroyed. The Infested's destruction proved effective Lieutenant Morali’s efforts to accomplish his part of the mission. And during the diversion the fight proved to be, Ensign L’Nari also followed through with her part of the mission and established the necessary communications the mission called for.” Enyd released her light grip enough to gesture towards the others. “I would like to highly commend both Lieutenant Morali and Ensign L’Nari, ma’am. It was a difficult mission even before the shooting started, and both the Lieutenant and Ensign proved themselves adaptable and adept at seeing the mission through even under difficult circumstances.”

Enyd fell silent then, waiting for either Rutherford’s response to her report or for the others to add in their own parts she’d skirted over or had been unaware of. Enyd continued to mull over the mission details in case she’d forgotten something she’d need to add later but stayed more mentally present this time than she had just prior to the debriefing’s start. It would not do to miss more nonverbal cues that may prove the making or breaking of a smooth department running.

Re: EPI: S [D03|2100] A most furtive debrief

Reply #2
[Ensign L’Nari]
Attn: @stardust @Ellen Fitz @Number6 @Brutus

Under any other circumstance she would have been flattered by the words of Lieutenant Commander Rutherford but, as L’Nari sipped from her cup of warm buttermilk while listening to the Chief Diplomatic Officer, she could feel how nervous it made her to be praised like that. Not because it wasn’t deserved, but because she knew it had been nothing but sheer luck that they all lived to take a seat at the table. For a brief moment the black-furred Ensign looked up from the beverage which she cradled in both of her hands, and as she did so her emerald green eyes found the woman at the opposite side of the table; the Assistant Chief Diplomatic Officer, Lieutenant Enyd Madsen. Almost subconsciously, they narrowed ever so slightly by pure aversion. The woman had displayed a certain gunboat-style diplomacy that deeply concerned the Caitian Diplomatic Attaché during their away mission, but what disturbed her even more was the Lieutenant’s carelessness and the utter disregard for the wellbeing of those entrusted to her command. Ensign McArthur had been a prime example of that and, while the man did survive –once again, through sheer luck- it had completely destroyed both the respect and trust that L’Nari was supposed to have for someone of Enyd’s rank and position.

What if it had been her?

It was that single question that repeated itself over and over again in her mind whenever she thought back about the events aboard the Rosalind Franklin, and it was that single question why L’Nari, the otherwise quiet Diplomatic Attaché who didn’t like to draw a lot of attention to herself, had decided to speak up during the debriefing. Under any other circumstance she would have taken her concerns to Lieutenant Commander Rutherford in private and leave it to the woman’s better judgment but, as her emerald green eyes looked at the others currently seated at the table, L’Nari knew that she couldn’t; regardless of her opinions about them, she simply couldn’t allow Foval and Faye to go into a mission with Lieutenant Madsen without being aware of what kind of person she truly was.

When Lieutenant Madsen began to speak up and started to recall the events of their mission, their equally green eyes met for a brief moment. If looks had been able to kill, the Assistant Chief Diplomatic Officer would have dropped to the deck right there and L’Nari knew that she probably wouldn’t even lose any sleep over it. Throughout the remainder of Enyd’s recollection of their mission, L’Nari instead focused on her cup of buttermilk and silently tried to collect as much confidence as possible for what was to come. Even though this meant that she was barely listening to Lieutenant Madsen, the woman nevertheless still managed to catch her off guard when Enyd suddenly commended her performance.

”You can keep your commendation.” The words had left L’Nari’s mouth in a tone that only further accentuated the disdain in her emerald green eyes, and clearly without thinking. It took the black-furred Diplomatic Attaché a moment to regain her composure but, when she did, L’Nari quickly added the word ”Lieutenant.” to make it at least a little less offending. Regardless, the dice had been cast now and, with a deep breath, the Caitian Ensign spoke up on a much calmer tone that carried a slight Caitian accent. ”You claim that I am adaptable and adept at seeing the mission through but, with all due respect to Lieutenant Commander Rutherford and the Diplomatic Department, that’s not because of you.” L’Nari knew that this was much more difficult than any diplomatic event she had ever been a part of, in no small part because those assembled around the table were all experienced in this game of diplomacy, and she realized only too well that she’d have to pick her words extremely careful now. ”I’m a Diplomat, not a Security Officer. I don’t claim to be an expert in combat tactics but frankly, I don’t have to be to make an accurate assessment. You left Ensign McArthur, a critically wounded colleague, to die aboard the Rosalind Franklin and the only reason he survived is sheer luck.” That is when L’Nari dropped the bomb, and her voice briefly became just slightly louder as she spoke. ”What if it had been me?” She gestured at the others and mentioned them as she did so. ”Or Lieutenant Foval? Ensign Eloi-Danvers? Would things have been any different if it had been Lieutenant Commander Rutherford herself?”

L’Nari took a deep breath, both to calm herself and for a little dramatic effect if she’d have to be completely honest. ”Again, we are Diplomats, Lieutenant. Not Security Officers. Not all of us relish combat like you do, and I shouldn’t have to be the one to tell you that, when we get sent on an away mission, you are expected to care for the lives entrusted to you as much as we are expected to respect your authority and follow your orders.” For a brief moment the Caitian Ensign turned to look at Lieutenant Commander Rutherford to see if the woman was about to explode or not. She couldn’t quite assess what the Chief Diplomatic Officer was thinking at that very moment however, something that actually unnerved L’Nari quite a bit, and she cleared her throat for a moment before continuing. In the worst case scenario, Lieutenant Commander Rutherford would call Security to throw her in the brig within mere seconds from now, so the black furred Diplomatic Attaché figured that she might as well say what was on her mind as diplomatically as possible while she still could. ”The life of Ensign McArthur was entrusted to you and you didn’t even look back, not even once, when you betrayed that trust. I won’t go into what you could or couldn’t have done because, once again, I’m not an expert. I do know that you demonstrated recklessness, carelessness, and a complete disregard for our wellbeing with your gunboat-style diplomacy throughout the mission. A gamble, I believe you called it just now.”

For a brief moment L’Nari looked at her cup of buttermilk, making sure that it was empty before Security would inevitably show up to drag her to the brig. ”We successfully completed our mission and we all miraculously made it out alive, but once again, that’s not because of you.” As she spoke, L’Nari pointed her finger at Enyd. ”You don’t get to commend anyone, that right is reserved to us because we made it through on our own.”

And with that, L’Nari leaned back in her chair before turning her attention to Lieutenant Commander Rutherford; almost as if stating that she was ready to be taken to the brig now, just without actually speaking the words.

Re: EPI: S [D03|2100] A most furtive debrief

Reply #3
[ Lt. Cmdr. Rutherford | Diplomatic Council | Deck 02 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy ] attn: @Ellen Fitz @Number6 @Brutus @Nesota Kynnovan

When it came down to departmental upkeep, every branch had its own routines. Security, for example, would hold their usual drills around the ship, practicing make-believe invasions and imaginary lost kittens. Navigation would practice in a simulator environment or the occasional shuttle excursion, while intelligence hung around the lounges, enthralling innocent beauties into their web of affections, to hone that special measure of subversion. The one common denominator they all had in mind being the training of one’s required skillset in situations the department could face somewhere down the line. There was no clearly defined routine suggested by the officer’s brief of Starfleet Command on the diplomatic department, however, and many wondered how such fine-tuning of their required talents could even be facilitated artificially. Sure, the occasional negotiation between officers would scratch the surface of such considerations, but Samantha always believed that if they couldn’t have a diplomatic argument amongst themselves, how were they supposed to reflect that kind of cool control in other situations? Which was exactly why she not only saw it as prudent to throw her subordinates together as often as possible, but also to stir the pot if necessary.

The real trouble being, that no stirring was ever necessary.

Enyd came forward and dove right into the middle of the action. A shortcut the blonde commander could appreciate. Also, it wasn’t ever easy to go first, and far more comfortable to hang back and simply play off of what other’s brought to the table. Setting the tone of a conversation, however, and holding that all the way through, that was the signature of a true leading diplomat. But she wasn’t going to hand out proverbial praise that easily just yet. First impressions still always had to hold up to the proof of time. Brushing her plump lips together, sky blue eyes squinted gingerly, as if by extension. It was a superior’s prerogative, after all, to have the happenings regurgitated to them, even if they already had a good idea of what was going down. Giving the benefit of a doubt, so that when the hammer fell, there were no hurt feelings, but a singing pain in the vicinity of the brain. The fact that the uplink to Theurgy had been established beyond the allotted time window, had been a minor bump, but it was interesting to hear why this had happened, and why the diplomatic decoy mission to the Great Hall had, eventually, almost overturned the rescue effort from a fortified compound, in the overall body count.

Even without additional context, and from what she had surmised from the woman’s duty records, Enyd was a strong woman, fiery – to use a more colorful adjective – and that she did not shy away from confrontation or risk. It would’ve been hypocritical to judge her based on that impression alone, however, since Sam herself wasn’t exactly a wallflower. Diplomacy was as much a matter of confidence as it was of knowledge, to back it up. What she however wouldn’t tolerate was instigating trouble just for the sake of spicing up one’s fleeting tenure of being in charge. Which was another judgment she wasn’t fully prepared to make, without further information. Which, unfortunately, most of the Lieutenant’s elaborations did not immediately provide. Feeling herself get caught in the battle fog of trying to follow the action scene that had seemingly unfolded in the great hall, the diplomat also wouldn’t deny the necessity to rise to any occasion, as it presented itself. Still, her blue eyes dropped for a fleeting moment, in a nonchalant signaling of losing the point. Giving Enyd the opportunity to recover. As she ultimately commended her peers on the mission, however, spherical icebergs emerged from beneath long lashes once more, transfixing on the brunette, before shifting effortlessly to the Caitian, immediately picking up how L’Nari’s black fur flared in the back of the Ensign’s neck. And she didn’t even have to pass on the baton … the woman immediately pounced on it by her own volition.

Leaning back a little more, offering the spring-loaded swiffle a chance to stretch, Samantha crossed her legs and rested one wrist delicately across the precipice of her knee, manicured thumbnail idly flicking over the inside crook of her middle finger’s third joint. Words flowed from the black-furred alien like a venomous waterfall, pooling on the floor, slowly creeping up to Enyd’s feet. Blue eyes immediately switched back to the Lieutenant, to gauge her reaction to the rather brash accusations, choosing to keep out of what could slowly be classified as a fight. Albeit one sided for now. Enyd seemed to have a rather different recollection of the events, which reminded her strongly of the “Daa’maq” mission and how Foval and L’Nari had ended up disagreeing on the proper protocol. And while the line of command dictated that the superior was always right and the subordinate had to suck it up, that was not entirely how she ran her department. Because there was absolutely no sense in keeping mute drones around, who were afraid to ever speak up and contest wrongdoing. At the same time, however, something the chain of command DID require, as was true for any interaction between sentient beings, was respect.

“Countenance, Ensign.” Sam intervened calmly, barely audibly, but with a distinct nod and reassuring tone to her words. A calm voice, after all, could be understood better than a screaming one. But she let the young woman continue, taking in every nuance, every emotion. And as the issue of the greater plot against one officer’s life came up, the blonde was starting to get intrigued. It was, after all, one of the most polarizing questions of being in command. She had found herself pondering that sentiment on many occasions. And generally speaking, had indeed most times opted for the grander good. Raising her brows as the Caitian concluded, however, the commander leaned forward a little bit once more, gauging if the argumentative flashflood had passed and the avenue was safe to venture into, once more. Everyone was allowed to speak their mind, at first, but they would also have to live with the reality of potentially being wrong. Who of the two was, and how much, the diplomat herself was still not quite confident in, yet. 

“Yes, we are diplomats.” she subsequently reassured, giving L’Nari a nod, as if to validate her assumption – at least in part - Sam qualified her previous statement by adding: “Which is also why we should employ diplomatic nuances to voice our grievances.” Taking a gentle breath, azure orbs fell on Enyd again, and they would continuously carry on switching between them – and to an extent the rest of the team – during the ensuing monologue. After all, there were no innocents to controversial behavior at this table. “Everyone knows that I like to consider combat as the failure of diplomacy, and by extent, the failure of the diplomatic officer in question. For me, that is an unfaltering truth I conduct myself by … and take full responsibility for, if I fail that ideal too, sometimes. And when that happens, we often cannot choose who we have to become, in order to get the job done. And almost certainly, that includes making hard decisions. Certainly, it’s far more difficult to weigh the life of a crewmate, against the ensured alliance of a superpower, as it is an unnamed soul, in a statistic. And there is no clear guideline, but our own moral compass, to navigate that. But we’ve all sworn an oath to the ideals and continuation of way of life for the citizens of the Federation, even above our own. McArthur was aware of that too. And regardless of that, if you cannot take praise from Lieutenant Madsen, then let me at least commend you for respecting the chain of command in the field, and keeping your grievances to yourself, and away from your duty, until now – like you’ve had during the Daa’maq mission. Which shows a level of professionalism required, but not always met, by all Starfleet officers.”

Letting a puff of expired air escape her plush lips, Samantha folded her hands across the large PADD on the conference table before her. Feeling as if she had said a lot without taking a side and calling anyone out specifically. Which may have been the distinguishing characteristic of a good diplomat, but it wasn’t overly helpful in leading a group of various strong personalities. So, ultimately, she decided to address each of them specifically, hoping to make her opinions known more clearly. Thus, blue eyes fixed on Enyd first, as she’d been the one in charge. “The success of the mission cannot be negotiated away, neither can your bravery in seeing it through. And while I may not like all the details being represented to me today – in absence of a full report – I reserve the option to address specific issues at a later point in a private meeting. In summary, I am proud how we, as a department, managed to pull off one of the biggest upsets in this arena. This has only been the final building block to secure us Klingon support, but as such it has not been any less important.”

Concluding with a definitive nod towards the brunette Lieutenant, the blonde ended her praise on that specific front, before returning her attention to L’Nari. Addressing her second not meant as a means of depreciating her value at all. “And a good part of this success rests on your actions as well, Ensign. Not only in this mission but your general contribution to the department. I appreciate your passion, as you should appreciate my benevolence, in regard to how you sometimes exude it.” and as if it were impossible, a small smile seemed to tuck at the chief diplomat’s plump pillows ever so covertly. The truth being, that she could very well see herself in the Caitian, many, many years ago, when diplomacy had been a field of blossoming passion, rather than a web of entangled interests. “I think there are ways in which you can learn from Lieutenant Madsen, and vice versa.” a weighted glance also fell on Enyd for a moment. “As I said in my original introduction to this very group, I am not here to micromanage or hold anyone’s hand in moments of distress. But I also encouraged everyone to speak up when they feel something is awry. That being said, and knowing all of you a little better now, I do draw the line of involvement when personal grievances cannot be talked out among those individuals. So … Lieutenant, Ensign, could I provide inspiration for a prospering convergence between both your views?”

Re: EPI: S [D03|2100] A most furtive debrief

Reply #4
[ Lt. JG Foval| Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy] @stardust @Ellen Fitz @Nesota Kynnovan

One of the more painful aspects of being a Vulcan that was more in touch with their emotional side was the pain and heartbreak of loss.  

His chess game had been a bitter pill to swallow.   Zy carefully let him down, telling him that as Martok’s liaison, she might not be on the ship as much, if not at all.   Just as he was daring to be a living person again, the rug was pulled out from under his feet.  Even synthahol wasn’t enough to dull the pain.   Still that was life for you.  

He was about to share his part of the mission, when the bickering started between the two officers of the team.   He had been that fresh faced ensign once, “no Man behind” was the Human platitude that was used to express the importance of ensuring that the entire team survives.   But there was also the no win scenario, that was the subject of a legendary test that Foval, like many cadets had taken.   Both are sterile, and do little to prepare you for the real life of a space adventurer.   One day he had gone to his quarters to meditate, the next time he was in control, he was alone on an alien jungle moon. 

After Rutherford had encouraged them to get it together, he decided to weigh in his own thoughts.  
“We are one ship, perhaps not fully alone, but we are isolated from the support network that we have been trained to use, and the aforementioned network is under the influence of a terrible power that is tricking those who aren’t complicit into believing that we are traitors.    Many of the best Starfleet officers, the finest recruits the academy have ever produced, have had days where there are no good options.   In situations like ours, that number is considerably higher.   We cannot turn our back on the idealism and philosophies of the Starfleet Uniform, that is why the Captain rebelled in the first place.   But we have to face our bad days too.”

He sat down, his relationship with Rutherford was still burgeoning, and he didn’t want to think that he had overstepped a line.     
Inhabiting my head are:

[Lt. Vanya |Assistant Science Officer| USS Theurgy]

[Lt. J.G Foval |Assistant Diplomatic Officer |USS Theurgy]

Re: EPI: S [D03|2100] A most furtive debrief

Reply #5
[ Lt. Enyd Isolde Madsen | Deck 2 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy ] attn: @stardust @Number6 @Brutus  @Nesota Kynnovan

Enyd tipped her head to the side as she listened to L’Nari’s vitriol-laden response. Despite the surprise of L'Nari's content, she maintained an open expression as she listened, fascinated that the Caitian had come this far in Starfleet, likely experiencing much more of life on a starship than herself, and yet she could still cling to naïve notions of holding hands, singing songs, and signing bountiful peace accords in situations like what they’d just experienced. In some ways, Enyd was amused with the extent of animosity rolling off the diplomatic attaché, though she was trained enough in masking emotions that none at the table would see anything more than her blinks and polite head nods as she used her body language to encourage L’Nari to share more. Enyd could also see part of herself, pre-Cardassia, in the dashed hopes and expectations one could infer from the woman’s words. The world was not operating according to the logic the Caitian expected, and that was not fair, nor right, and Enyd had been in that seat feeling those things while Javec bled to death in her arms.

She did not feel offended by L’Nari’s words nor angered and again only partially amused. Mostly, Enyd felt pity for the young woman, sympathy really, for Enyd knew personally that if L’Nari was going to get through this posting alive and with her sanity and soul intact, she was going to have to walk through the refining fire of making the hard decisions in the heat of the moment. Enyd had literally walked through fire in the Forge to get her proverbial shit together, though she knew she was far from fully refined into the state of a polished diamond. Enyd also knew without having to ask that the Caitian would refuse any and all efforts for help and encouragement in her growth, especially from the likes of Enyd. Yet that didn’t stop Enyd from feeling the pull to be the support to L’Nari that Anderson had been to her.

When L’Nari finished, Rutherford spoke up, pulling Enyd’s still neutral expression and full attention. When her department head spoke of a private meeting after the full report, Enyd nodded in agreement, and she also nodded in agreement with fellow diplomat Foval when he spoke up after Rutherford. When the room fell momentarily silent once more, Enyd pulled various “files” from her memory,  in an effort to encourage L’Nari to see the reality of diplomacy under fire.

“Starfleet values are not inert nor mere dogma to be blindly followed regardless of context. They were intentionally worded and weighed to be interpreted and implemented in the best possible way, no matter the context one might find themselves in. They train all Starfleet members to make the most difficult ethical choices when no easy solutions are found. For example, though on a diplomatic mission, we were beaming into a potentially hostile area under known hostilities. Thus Procedure Q applies to us diplomats as much as to Security or Science departments: a landing party is to beam down fully armed and ready for any kind of trouble. The inference from this procedure that was drilled throughout training was that all Starfleet personnel are to maintain their phaser training not just for offensive purposes but also for defensive purposes. There are times where the best defense is a good offense, and they do not excuse diplomats from receiving this very same basic Starfleet training.” When Enyd spoke, her eyes traveled intentionally from one individual to another within the room, not resting overly long on any, so they did not feel targeted or maligned.

“We are all presently operating under Directive 217, which states ‘When an alien force, organism or people of demonstrated unfriendly intentions and unknown capabilities attempts to take control of a major Federation starship, or Starfleet itself, prevention of such takeover assumes precedence over all else – including the wellbeing of any Federation citizen or group thereof.’ Furthermore, article 14, section 31, adds that Starfleet personnel are permitted the use of ‘extraordinary measures’ in times of dire emergency. Our mission was operating during a time of emergency. All our days onboard this ship, presently, until the Infested are dealt with, could be defined as a time of emergency. I need not line out all the many missions that were simultaneously occurring at the time of our own, how we were operating within a very narrow window of opportunity, or how if we had failed on any front the loss of life felt for Theurgy, the Klingons, and the Federation Could be astronomically higher. We all know of those missions and will know more of them and become more acquainted with how lucky we are that things went as well as they did in the coming days.” Enyd paused and shook her head. “Though, I use the word ‘luck’ loosely, for the successes of these missions were because of imperfect, fallible individuals who overcame their differences and worked together for the goal of restoring Starfleet and protecting the Federation from an alien force that has demonstrated nothing but the desire of our complete destruction.”

While previously, Enyd had been speaking to all members in the room, for the remaining, Enyd returned her attention fully to L’Nari and spoke with even, open tones, also keeping her body language muted.

“It is for that ability that I commend you and all others onboard this ship, as I not only as a superior officer but also as a fellow member of this crew, do have a right to do. Just as you have the right to acknowledge it, or dismiss it, though the method in which you do so will either bring you merit or not.” Enyd added a measured nod. “To answer your question directly, Ensign, I would have made the same order if it had been any member of this crew, including the captain. I trusted McArthur’s training and his ability to maintain his training, which we have all been subjected to before our assignment here, and the training that we are under orders to maintain. If I had noted any reason prior to the attack to doubt his training and ability,” Enyd shook her head, “I still would have made that call, and I would have written the letter to his family conveying my condolences for their loss as well. We had far more people waiting on our successful completion, and there was no way of knowing at the time if the shuttle was going to be overrun. The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few or the one, Ensign, and we had many waiting on our success to ensure their own.”

Enyd returned her gaze to Rutherford briefly then back to L’Nari and on to Foval, “I appreciate the openness of communication and sharing of perspectives. It is the only way to ensure that we are always aligned in the end goal of protecting Starfleet and restoring the Federation, even if our individual opinions differ.” She nodded again to L’Nari and again kept her tones neutral alongside her neutral expression, “I never claimed to be the reason for the success of our mission, and I do not in any way relish combat.” She pulled a sleeve back from her wrist and held it up for the Caitian to see. She’d intentionally kept the scars on her wrists and ankles from the manacles the Cardassians had used. “I know what it means to be helpless, and at the mercy of a violent force, Ensign, and I would encourage you to ask more questions and make fewer assumptions in the future, just as I will continue to grow in my leadership utilizing your feedback,” she lowered her arm and looked once more at the other occupants in the room, “as well as the feedback of the other members in our department.”

Re: EPI: S [D03|2100] A most furtive debrief

Reply #6
[ Ens. Faye Lintah Eloi-Danvers | Diplomatic Council Conference Room | Deck 02 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @stardust @Nesota Kynnovan @Number6 @Ellen Fitz 

Faye Eloi-Danvers was not one prone to over exaggerations (or so she often claimed). They served a purpose, to an extent, in negotiations, but on the whole being accurate and to the point was often more important that over stating one's hand, or position. Thus, when the tired looking Ensign entered the room that Rutherford liked to use to chat with her staff, and looked at the gathering, she did not feel it much of an exaggeration to note that they all 'looked like shit'. This was, of course, kept to herself. She was a diplomat after all, and despite what some might claim to be otherwise, she was quite capable of exercising a modicum of tact when the moment called for it. 

And frankly, she was too tired to say something that might start a fight. It had been a rough couple of days, most of which Faye had spent babysitting the newly discovered grandson of Chancellor Martok, one M'Ven, a spiteful little bog munching - ahem - talented young warrior in the making. Given that she had helped rescue the boy and his mother (whether they liked it or not), in a mission more suited to the Intelligence teams efforts - irony - she felt herself somewhat responsible for the boy. With the rest of the department busy, almost entirely off ship, between additional rescue missions to save Intel Chiefs that stuck their noses into diplomats business (rightly or wrongly), or beaming down to Qo'noS to affect the balance of power in an allied nation, someone had needed to keep an eye on the kid.

Exhausting. Truly.

Even now, having sent the little hellspa- future of the House of Martok - off to live with his kin, Faye felt she could still use a nice long soak and the company of her Imzadi. But, duty called. Instead, she was here, and not in a bath (she no longer had one in her quarters, having turned the department head's suite over to Samantha when the woman arrived back in the Aldean system). Sitting next to L'Nari and trying to keep her own claws in, cupping a mug of ichoberry tea and wishing for all the world that the next half hour would be simple, straight forward, and peaceful. 

If only.

Instead, Faye got a front row seat to a royal spat between the new Assistant Chief and her old Academy rival. For once, it was not Faye that got L'Nari's hackles up, and she couldn't quite decide if she was impressed or horrified. Damn. 
'Keep your commendation?' Oh, someone woke up on the wrong side of the litter box, didn't you kitten?
In truth she hadn't seen the Caitian this mad since sophomore year, and having that ire directed elsewhere was rather enjoyable. Faye found herself wishing she'd brought popcorn, but the tea was far more professional.

On the one hand, Faye agreed that diplomats had no business involving themselves in direct conflict or violent action. On the other hand, she was fairly certain that not one person on this team had hands that were not bloodstained. Which...raised a few questions about the department as a whole that Faye didn't wish to dwell upon. The sickening, liquid smacking noise, of bodies breaking under a massive boulder surfaced, and Faye visibly flinched, before locking the memory away. There was the old axiom about how to diplomacise Klingon's, requiring one to shoot first and raise a mug of Warnog after, but that moment, in the tunneled out warren of the old mining asteroid had been a bit much.

True to their profession, Rutherford cautioned against outbursts, and advised that her team approach the situation, well, diplomatically. No big surprise there, as the Betazoid reigned her senses in tight. She was picking up far more heated emotions around this table than she wanted to deal with right then, and actively devoted a portion of her focus to keeping the intense feelings emanating from the others on the outside of her skull. 

Deciding that having hunched herself forward was a mistake, the lithe junior diplomat curled back into her chair, letting it lean further from the table, before the support bars kicked into place to keep her from falling back. In essence, physically distancing herself from the passionate arguments that Rutherford had invited Enyd and L'Nari to offer up. Because no matter how calm and collected they tried to be, Faye knew better. Even Foval, for all his outward appearance of calm, as he inserted himself into the moment, was broiling with repressed emotions that Faye did not want to deal with. 

Rubbing her temple, she inadvertently mimicked Rutherford, crossing one of her own legs over the other, and gently eased the chair back a few centimeters, still cradling her mug between her fingertips of her spare hand. The sensors built into the cleverly disguised bionic replacement even transferred a sensation of the warmth of the cup to her nervous system. She supposed on some level she pitied L'Nari in that moment, having regulation quoted at her, and perhaps even her whole world view called into question. Perhaps she just liked watching chaos unfold. Again, Faye wasn't too happy with what that said about her, but she felt she had no moral high ground to claim, for once.

'I would encourage you to ask more questions and make fewer assumptions in the future' sounded like the kind of line that Faye would have fed L'Nari to get a rise out of her, and call out how mature she (Faye) was to her old rival. Hearing it tossed out from a superior officer made her wince ever so slightly again, before she tamped down on that expression as well, and tried to simply blend into the background. She had zero desire to get dragged into this overly polite free for all. She caught Rutherford's eyes and gave a small, subtle shake of her head, pratically broadcasting her lack of desire to comment. If any of them had been able to pick up her thoughts, it would have been a jumble along the lines of Nope, nopey nope nope, not with a a thirty-nine-and-a-half foot pole nope.

Re: EPI: S [D03|2100] A most furtive debrief

Reply #7
[Ensign L’Nari | Diplomatic Council | Deck 02 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy]
Attn: @stardust @Ellen Fitz @Number6 @Brutus

If L’Nari had to voice how she felt at that very moment, after having listened to Lieutenant Commander Rutherford, it was probably ‘disappointed’. The black-furred Caitian had prepared herself for the worst, which –in her mind- involved the Chief Diplomatic Officer losing her cool and calling Security to throw her in the brig for such a blatant display of disrespect. What she never expected was that the blonde would remain calm and search for common ground which, in hindsight, was actually part of her job in the first place so shouldn’t really have come as that much of a surprise. Regardless, even though she was taken rather off-guard by it, L’Nari recognised Lieutenant Commander Rutherford’s response for what it truly was; a chance to change things if she played her cards right.

Knowing that Lieutenant Madsen would undoubtedly respond shortly, L’Nari began to think of how she wanted to play the hand that was now dealt to her by Lieutenant Commander Rutherford. She had voiced her displeasure over the Assistant Chief Diplomatic Officer’s behaviour, enough to get her point across at least, and the Caitian Diplomatic Attaché knew that she couldn’t keep wildly throwing accusations around at this point; from here on, it had to be constructive criticism with a clear goal. That, and she had to be mindful as not to repeat herself. While she was considering her next move, L’Nari suddenly caught a movement in the corner of her eye and, upon turning her head, noticed that Lieutenant Foval was sitting back down again. Somewhat puzzled as to what she’d just missed, the black-furred Ensign kept her green eyed-gaze onto the Vulcan until Lieutenant Madsen suddenly spoke up and her attention shifted over towards the brunette.

When the Assistant Chief Diplomatic Officer spoke, L’Nari honestly couldn’t help but respect the fact that she maintained such a calm and collected composure. Similar to the reaction she initially expected from Samantha Rutherford, Lieutenant Madsen didn’t even raise her voice whereas many of the Diplomats she’d came to know on Cardassia –or Paris, for that matter- would never have tolerated such insubordination. Though, as the minutes ticked by and the black-furred Caitian had only heard the shorter woman quote rules and regulations to justify her behaviour during the mission, that newfound respect quite rapidly turned into annoyance once more. Simultaneously, the somewhat impressed look that had been on the Ensign’s face just moments earlier now became a somewhat cynical smile usually reserved for the dentist whenever they mentioned pulling a molar. On the bright side, the Assistant Chief Diplomatic Officer had given L’Nari an idea on how to play her hand; an idea which, once Lieutenant Madsen had shown her the scar on her wrist, was only further cemented into place.

Once the Assistant Chief Diplomatic Officer ended it was with a jab about asking more questions and making fewer assumptions in the past, which quite honestly irked L’Nari to the point where she had to grit her teeth to prevent herself from retorting. Instead, the black-furred Diplomatic Attaché took a deep breath to regain herself and briefly looked across the room to see if anyone was about to speak up. No one was; even Faye was leaning back in her chair with an expression like she’d rather be anywhere else but there. In all honesty L’Nari couldn’t even blame her for that.

Knowing that she wouldn’t accidently interrupt anyone, L’Nari took another deep breath and spoke up. ”Lieutenant Madsen,” The Caitian Ensign’s slightly accented voice was actually rather polite now, matching the professional –albeit somewhat cold- look on her face almost perfectly. ”Once again, with respect to Lieutenant Commander Rutherford, you’re quoting directives and regulations to justify what happened. You’re completely right of course, and I know that, as the highest-ranking officer on the ground, it was your prerogative to make the decisions you made.” During the brief pause that followed, L’Nari briefly looked at her empty cup on the table and now regret that she’d drank all of her buttermilk already. Shrugging slightly, she brought her green-eyed gaze back up to the Lieutenant and a small smile began to adorn her face. ”However, you’re forgetting one important aspect which I’d like to respectfully point out to you. In the centuries before the Unification of Cait, my planet has seen some rather devastating wars between the largest and most civilized clans.” The most destructive wars had always been caused by the civilized clans. Her father, a Diplomatic Officer himself, had taught a young L’Nari about the strength and failures of diplomacy with the various wars as reference material, and it was part of the reason why she joined the Starfleet Diplomatic Corps herself. ”One particular war, the most devastating but also one of the most interesting ones in my opinion, went on for many years and saw millions of Cait give their lives in brutal battles of attrition all throughout our dense jungle regions. Eventually, when the clans began to run out of professional warriors, they began to conscript just to feed the meat grinder. Many of the officers were similarly conscripted or volunteered to join the war and, while many actually did a good job, there were also those who seemingly didn’t care about the wellbeing of their warriors and instead blindly followed the book. Now,” As she spoke, L’Nari raised her hand to interrupt anyone who had figured out where she was going with her history lesson. ”The reason this war is so well-known is because some of the warriors took matters into their own hands and allowed certain ‘accidents’ to befall upon those officers. There are a lot of known cases and even more suspected cases where the proof came up short for a conviction, but the number of casualties amongst the Officer Corps was extremely high in the later years of the war.”

For a brief moment L’Nari turned her attention to Faye. ”I’m sure that Ensign Eloi-Danvers remembers that, during our time at Starfleet Academy, I very much struggled with the mandatory leadership courses.” It had been one of the courses where Faye had completely left her in the dust, so the black-furred Caitian knew only too well that her counterpart remembered that particular course. With a grimace, she turned her attention back to Lieutenant Madsen once more. ”I took extra classes and put in a lot of extra effort, and I remember that one of the Instructors told me to draw parallels with historical events just so ‘we would learn from history instead of repeating it’. Back then, I drew parallels with this particular war as well and it taught me enough to eventually make it through the leadership courses.” L’Nari paused for a moment to cough softly against her dry throat. ”The exact same parallel can be drawn to the USS Theurgy however; we all signed up for various different reasons, but all for the same cause. I think it’s safe to say that none of us expected to find ourselves in our current situation when we joined Starfleet but regardless, we all stepped forward when it was requested of us. We’re vilified now as a result. Outcasts and traitors. We’re forced to fight or evade our colleagues and friends whenever we encounter them and, even if we would want to go home, we cannot because we’d be arrested on sight. All we have is each other.” L’Nari turned her attention to Lieutenant Commander Rutherford for a moment but, as opposed to her previous rant, the black-furred Caitian now looked at the Chief Diplomatic Officer with confidence. She knew that she was starting to prove her point and make the most out of the hand she’d been dealt. ”I apologize for the long rant, but my point is that we’re supposed to be able to depend on each other without question. Like I said, all we have is each other and if it were to become known that you are willing to sacrifice everyone entrusted to your command, including yourself, just for the sake of accomplishing your mission, I quite honestly have sincere concerns. It might become a very lonely journey for you but, looking back at my previous example about the war, I am much more concerned that you’ll eventually find yourself standing alone during a dangerous encounter because everyone in your away team is willingly looking the other way.”

With that being said, L’Nari briefly looked around the room to see how the others were taking it all in. Just to be on the safe side, the Caitian Diplomatic Attaché added a friendly ”Just to make this clear, I’m definitely not threatening Lieutenant Madsen. I’m just pointing out the dangers based on my observations.” Turning her attention back to the Assistant Chief Diplomatic Officer, L’Nari smiled in a friendly way that matched the tone of her voice, although there most definitely was a venomous undertone when she spoke up once more. ”Oh, and Lieutenant? It is quite an acerbic means of diplomacy to use old scars just to get the point across. Could you please refrain from doing so in the future? If we would all practice a similar style of conversation, I worry that Lieutenant Foval will be sitting at the table in just his briefs before long.”

Re: EPI: S [D03|2100] A most furtive debrief

Reply #8
[ Lt. Cmdr. Rutherford | Diplomatic Council | Deck 02 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy ] attn: @Ellen Fitz @Number6 @Brutus @Nesota Kynnovan

In a career, that already spanned the better part of a decade, Samantha had found there to be a unanimous truth, when it came to people working in their profession. At least for those called upon by fate and destiny, to apply their innate talents and gifts, in the forum of Starfleet diplomacy. They were a special kind of people, defined by the expectation to be eloquent, impartial and detached from all gregarious sentiments, to soar high above the earthly shackles of a subjective perspective, like a bird of prey on a desert wind. With an oversight, that eons of evolution had bestowed upon, in an effort to create a being with an outlook on the vastness of possibilities, superior to that of those dwelling in the mud. Yet, even among this surreptitious breed, there were different individuals, with different kinds of tactics, to eventually secure their survival, within the harsh climate of ever shifting pastures and allegiances.

So, it came to no surprise, that within the microcosmos of the diplomatic council – as was true with any other department on Theurgy, and the people contained within – there were contrasting views, as if the dark and the light side of fluid dunes, in an amber sunset. A contrast which, for a desert mouse on the ground, would seem like an entire world, devoid of even the anticipation, of the promise beyond the next ridge. But for people like them, appointed by the ancients of their cultures, who once upon a time rose above the detriments of war, in order to define their influence in switching blades for words, it was an ever-changing landscape, like a turbulent ocean frozen in time. Where a penchant for a specific hunting ground and tactic may have been prevalent, but was also encouraged to move past, in favor of the grander picture. Which was an exercise one endured every day, from dawn until dusk, did they not want to go to bed famished.

In that regard, Samantha understood implicitly, they contrasting nature of everyone’s view, and how they tried to shift their perspectives, to burry each other beneath their tempest of flowing sand, swaddling one another in a warm blanket of soft dust. It was evident in how phrases containing due respect and succinct digs like pointed daggers, plunging from the shadows. For someone as trained as either of them, it was as clear as blue skies and bright sun, that a grand portion of their concessions and appreciations to one another, was a smoke screen for conveying a more apt appraisal, that wouldn’t have otherwise been appropriate. Or, as Foval voiced so eloquently, a true diplomats testament to conveying little to no personal leaning, towards either side of the assumption. Words of appreciation and critique, in seemingly equal parts, wrapped in a reflective cocoon of obscurity. A true testament to his heritage as a Vulcan.

Catching Faye’s glances from the sideline of her attention on the pointy-eared blonde, a whisper from a reality beyond, it conveyed all the unspoken apprehension of a lion’s cub, skirting around two elder pride members, duking it out. A measure of personal growth bestowed upon her, through silence and abject sympathy. As within the empty void – which could’ve contained a devious ploy for supremacy over an old rival – echoed a sentiment of righteousness, to let them fight their own battles on equal terms. Another calling card of good diplomacy, that transcended in the shadows of silence, rather than open confrontation. Which astounded the commander, in no trivial measure, she had to admit. Even more so as her visual cues did not heed a reaction beyond a subtle sway of the dainty Betazoid’s head.

That certainly would go a long way in defusing the situation – or at least not adding to the fire.

So, when it came to Enyd and L’Nari, there were distinctive patterns of light and darkness, waves and valleys, in the sand too … in which they saw the desert churning. The supportive embrace of a steadfast lover, in the rulebooks of Starfleet, that feigned a sense of absolution, if followed implicitly. And by contrast, a sense of direction within a moral compass, promising a straight line to higher ground. Differing measures of navigation, united only within the conveyed intent of an expedient destination. Alternative routes that only became obvious in leading to the same place on the last stretches of the journey, which they hadn’t reached yet. But, while soaring over the grander picture of their dispute, the blonde diplomat did not have the patience to watch each of them scamper along their own ideologies and convictions, until they reach the far away oasis of understanding. No, sometimes it was necessary for there to be a grand and powerful squall, that ushered lonely travelers forward. Obscuring their views on the world, dipping it into a mutual foggy hue of nothingness, that would only lift over the sparkling mirror of flora lined revelation.

And she was going to be that storm.

“I appreciate your … colorful reasoning, Ensign.” Samantha concluded, both the gentle sting of underappreciated truths in the Caitian’s conclusions, as well as the growing irritation with venom rising, within the furry woman’s throat. An argument between both women that was intensifying over contrasting views, rather than settling in a prosperous sanctuary of mutual understanding. “It seems you both have steadfast opinions you wish to convey, which is valid, but threatening to surpass the scope of this briefing. So let me grant you an auxiliary opportunity, to continue your flourishing discourse.” Pulling herself from the warm embrace, that the backrest of her chair provided, the slender diplomat let the PADD on the table before her teeter ever so lightly within the gentle caress of her dainty fingers, while azure ponds cast reflections upon its colorful screen.

“I have growing concern that residual forces, within the House of Mo’Kai, who are not acknowledging current stewardship over their affairs, could mount a ploy to overthrow our support for Martok. A group of detractors is said to have put up base in a remote settlement of the central mountain range. I’ll send both of you to sway said party, in favor of our alliance. Prepare to leave tomorrow.” Not even looking up, as she ordered, the blonde diplomat had no intention to give anyone the impression they could sway her non-verbally, let alone with voiced concern. For there was a thought experiment in ancient earth tradition, where two donkeys were tied together with a rope, two mounds of lush straw on either side, which they couldn’t reach if they pulled in opposite directions … until they figured out how to work together. That mission was a rope.

“Lieutenant Foval, Ensign Danvers, I want you two to look into a possibility to establish cautious relations with the Federation News Network and a plan on how to potentially sway their coverage a little more in favor of the truth. You can call upon intelligence in terms of contacts and measures of obfuscation.” Ultimately letting aquamarine discs of ice cast upon the two of them the chilling reassurance of confidence, the commander pressed her lips together, rose petals extinguishing their vibrant hues, in a momentary measure of silence. It certainly was a test for the other two officer’s as well, albeit presently not as insurmountable a task. But given their individual histories, it just might. “Anyone have any questions?” she posed, as pale moons of larimar eventually rose above the horizon of the whole group, bestowing upon them the determination and trust she held for the entire team.

OOC: These are just two story objectives I figured would work for diplomatic officers. Of course you don't have to adhere to the grouping outlined here or even take them up. Just suggestions :)

Re: EPI: S [D03|2100] A most furtive debrief

Reply #9
[ Lt. Enyd Isolde Madsen | Deck 2 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] attn: @stardust @Number6  @Brutus  @Nesota Kynnovan 

Enyd fought and won against the inclination to raise a single eyebrow at not only L’Nari’s tone of voice and body language used when responding but also the stories and insights she chose to share. The fact that the Caitian was sitting on the Theurgy of all places and still maintained that level of naivety and insistence upon passivity as her chosen stories and not-so-subtle threat of “fragging” shocked Enyd to her core. How had L’Nari been allowed to pass her classes, her training, and how in the hell had she ended up on a renegade ship like Theurgy?

Sitting across from the woman, Enyd hid her shock, alongside her sympathy and pity. L’Nari must feel to be the only good soul amongst the damned, judging by her reactions to Enyd and the circumstances they found themselves in. A messianic martyr for the pure ideals of the Federation that upheld peace and fraternity. And while there was a time and place for such behaviors and beliefs, sitting in this room, with the missions they had before them, combating the likes of the Infested, this was NOT that place. Certainly, L’Nari struggled onboard, leaving Enyd to wonder if the Caitain even had friends, or if she intentionally isolated herself out of a misguided sense of superiority of ideals. How long before that broke something inside the Ensign and she did something drastic, such as fragging either Enyd or any of the rest of the crewmembers L’Nari deemed a “threat” to peace and brotherhood.

It made Enyd recall the Buddhist terrorists of Sri Lanka in ancient Earth and other extremists like them. Though they preached peace, and balance, and serenity, they eradicated any and all that threatened their version of peace, their version of balance, their version of serenity. In their absolute lack of compromise or willingness to allow gray into their lives, they fell into the hellish pit of extremism. L’Nari, to Enyd, was exhibiting the same preliminary signs of becoming one such extremist if she didn’t have a wake-up call of some sort.

And so Enyd nodded in complete agreement and approved when Rutherford spoke up soon after L’Nari ended her diatribe. The mission, in Enyd’s opinion, would grant them the opportunity to work together again—which, given L’Nari’s “confession” at the conference table, could result in Enyd’s death due to L’Nari’s intentional negligence—and it was a potential opportunity for L’Nari to have that very necessary wake up call. The fact that the mission also had them tracking down the residual Mo’Kai members was a bonus, as Enyd would gladly do whatever was necessary and proper to assist the Chief in securing her household rights and support Martok as well.

“No questions from me. I may actually already have a lead on those Mo’Kai detractors through an old friend of mine. She was the one who gifted me the tik’leth sword just before my transfer. I recently discovered that her sister is married to a Mo’Kai member and she may prove helpful once I give the sword back to her with blood on it.” Before L’Nari could hiss in disdain, Enyd added. “Those were her instructions when she gave it to me on the Klingon ship. Temporary usage, give it back bloodied and with a story. I have both now, and she may reciprocate in kind.”

Enyd almost looked forward to seeing the likely disgust and horror on L’Nari’s face should they be able to arrange a meeting with the gruff Pa'Qis'.

Re: EPI: S [D03|2100] A most furtive debrief

Reply #10
[ Lt. J.G. Foval | Deck 2 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] attn: @stardust @Ellen Fitz @Brutus   @Nesota Kynnovan 

The tense debate over, Foval began to think about the Federation news service.  It had always been open and honest, a force for good.   He had reviewed documents about the Federation following his return to galactic life.   The FNS had remained a trusted source of news.   During the Dominion War, the news service had changed somewhat, news during the war was subject to embargoes and security restrictions.  

“We must proceed with caution.” Said Foval.   “If the forces infiltrating Starfleet trigger an emergency situation, they could manipulate the FNS, and we could be compromised.”  

He didn’t want to be the bearer of bad news.   The crew had been so near to hope so many times, only for that hope to be squashed, or some other disaster would befall the crew to make the victories they do have taste like ashes.  However, in his short time on the ship he had began to learn how powerful hope was, through all the defeats it was never diminished.  

He turned to Danvers.   “However, we could start by finding an out of the way office, somewhere that may be free of the scrutiny of Starfleet, or rather those in the fleet that are part of this conspiracy.”  
Inhabiting my head are:

[Lt. Vanya |Assistant Science Officer| USS Theurgy]

[Lt. J.G Foval |Assistant Diplomatic Officer |USS Theurgy]

Re: EPI: S [D03|2100] A most furtive debrief

Reply #11
[ Ens. Faye Lintah Eloi-Danvers | Diplomatic Council Conference Room | Deck 02 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Nesota Kynnovan @stardust @Ellen Fitz @Number6 

Oh damn, there goes that plan, Faye thought, her eyes narrowing in confusion as to why L'Nari would a] drag her into this - spite probably - and b] bring up that particular course in question. Faye had done a rather thorough job of thrashing L'Nari's scores with her own high performance. It was one of a few crowning examples as to why she felt herself to be the better diplomat, both at the Academy, and ever since, frankly. Having L'Nari bring it up in defense of her own opinions however, confused Faye, and she Faye didn't like being confused any more than she liked being drawn back into this conversation when she'd been doing such a good job at staying out of things. 

She'd have to spike L'Nari's next glass of butter milk with catnip, or something to that effect. She couldn't just take that one sitting down, dragging her into the middle of this polite shit show.

A wince passed over Faye's features. Whenever someone had to be clear that they weren't threatening a superior officer while implying that the officers conduct might get her killed by the own purposeful inaction of her team...someone was going to end up in the brig. If not immediately after making such a statement, then it was only a matter of time from that point on. There were things you simply did not say, and the young Betazoid was befuddled that her diplomatic colleague had felt the need to spell the situation out in such a fashion. Faye held her tongue for once, lest she get caught up in the riptide that she presumed was about to splash across the meeting. 

Instead, their department chief took a different tack, one that Faye had to wonder at. Was this simply a matter of kicking a can down the road to deal with later, in private? Or was she hoping that by forcing the two officers whom seemed to be at such logger heads to work together on a mission would...what? Magically sort out their differences? Allow each to see the benefit of the other? Diplomatic, to be sure. Idealistic? Certainly. Realistic....well, Faye had worked with L'Nari on and off for years at the Academy, as well as since the Cait joined the crew of the Theurgy. Her current silent detente aside, her best efforts to avoid escalating a precarious situation, Faye would say that getting L'Nari to see eye to eye with someone she vehemently disliked or disagreed with on principle was like asking the sun not to shine. 

Stranger things had happened she supposed. 

Setting all that aside, Faye leaned back in as Rutherford directed her to work with Lt. Foval on gaining some sort of new relations with the FNS. While she had a vested interest in the state of house Mo'Kai herself - her friend was now stuck in charge of the whole thing, after all - Faye didn't protest the assignment. She could woo a reporter easily enough she supposed, though getting fair and unbiased coverage was going to be a neat trick, given how thoroughly painted into a corner the FNS had left the crew to this point. She was not in the least suppressed that someone in the Intelligence department had potential FNS contacts, nor was she surprised that Rutherford would rather  their department handle the actual outreach effort than the ships contingent of spooks. 

Casting an appraising eye at the Lt. Commander, she had to wonder how the blonde was handling things on a personal side. She knew that Rutherford and Fisher were close. The tension between the two had been near breaking during their mission to rescue the basta - honorable scion of House Martok when Fisher had inserted himself into Rutherford's cover op. Things had only escalated since then, and after all, Rutherford herself had coordinated the rescue mission to pull the Intel Chief out of the grasp of house Mo'Kai. But when her own coal black eyes met Rutherford's cool cerulean orbs, she detected none of that turmoil now. And prying would have been rude. 

Instead she let her focus drift to the former Borg drone, feeling his attentions on her. Hard to miss, really, and she offered up a slow shrug of one shoulder in response. "It could be as you say, sir. One always hopes to find an honest journalist, though many Federation world have long histories of the manipulation and implicit bias of the press. We do a pretty good job now, but with the infiltration of Starfleet and the state of emergency that could easily be declared...well. It is as you say." A daunting task to be sure. 

"Unfortunately I have no contacts wtihin the FNS myself, so I suppose our first step really is to reach out to our colleagues in Intelligence. See what the spies have for us to play with."

Re: EPI: S [D03|2100] A most furtive debrief

Reply #12
[Ensign L’Nari | Diplomatic Council | Deck 02 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy]
Attn: @stardust @Ellen Fitz @Number6 @Brutus

While she had definitely meant well, despite having been rather sharp in her choice of words, L’Nari knew that she was nevertheless quite out of line by addressing Lieutenant Madsen like that, and now the anger was subsiding a little bit she also realized that Lieutenant Commander Rutherford could have easily thrown her in the brig for it. As such, when the Chief Diplomatic Officer spoke up, the black-furred Caitian prepared herself for the worst. Instead of being chewed out however, it surprised L’Nari to hear that the blonde-haired woman thanked her for her colourful reasoning and yet she couldn’t help but feel a little uncomfortable over what she’d just heard; the Chief Diplomatic Officer was being overly friendly and there was something about ‘being granted an auxiliary opportunity to continue this flourishing discourse’ that was just about as suspicious as whenever Faye was being nice to her.

And indeed it was.

When L’Nari heard that she was being assigned another mission under Lieutenant Madsen despite having voiced her concerns at the start of the briefing, she closed her eyes and took a deep, almost inaudible breath. She knew that she couldn’t speak up against this order, especially not given how far she’d already pushed her luck, so the black-furred Caitian was left with little other alternatives than hoping for the best. Somewhere deep down inside, she genuinely hoped that the events on Qo’noS had been subject to the circumstances and that the new mission would go better. Or rather, without bloodshed and instead with the diplomatic finesse that was expected of them. After all, she knew that Lieutenant Madsen wouldn’t have reached her current rank if she’d been completely incapable of diplomacy at a basic level.

At first L’Nari found herself pleasantly surprised when Lieutenant Madsen spoke up, and she turned her green eyes to the woman with a look that perfectly mirrored her delight upon hearing that the Assistant Chief Diplomatic Officer not only had a lead, but possibly even a connection that allowed them to observe diplomatic protocol without bloodshed. That happiness, and maybe even the pride which the black-furred Diplomatic Attaché had felt upon hearing that Lieutenant Madsen’s lead was married to a Mo’Kai member, disappeared almost immediately though upon hearing that the slender brunette was planning to return her sword with blood on it. With her happiness and pride now once again making way for annoyance and disbelief, L’Nari turned her green-eyed gaze back to Lieutenant Commander Rutherford as if to say ‘See?’.

As the debriefing continued and others voiced their thoughts on their respective assignments, L’Nari turned her green-eyed attention to her PADD, which was idly laying on the table in front of her. While she sat there in silence, the black-furred Caitian couldn’t help but wonder if the events of the Great Hall would repeat themselves all over again, and a small part of her genuinely worried if she would end up getting wounded. After all, Lieutenant Madsen had stated that she was intent on looking for violence, and there was not a single shred of doubt in L’Nari’s mind that the Assistant Chief Diplomatic Officer would leave her behind if she became a liability. Or maybe even simply out of spite because of what happened during this debriefing.

A soft, almost sad sigh escaped L’Nari’s lips as she remembered the first aid training they had all been subject to at Starfleet Academy. She had passed that course with flying colours, even scoring higher than Faye, but the black-furred Caitian wondered if it would be enough to save herself if push really came to shove and Lieutenant Madsen would inevitably abandon her. With a somewhat gloomy smile, which was only fuelled more by a sudden bout of melancholy, the young Diplomatic Attaché found herself thinking of her father and what he would say about all this; ever the Diplomat, he was the one who taught her that violence was never the answer and L’Nari still remembered how proud the elderly Caitian had been when she joined the Diplomatic Corps herself.

Yet here she was, thinking about her first aid training and wondering if everything she’d learned during her self-defence classes would suffice. If she had to be completely honest, a part of L’Nari was glad that her parents weren’t around anymore to hear about this; about how she betrayed the Federation and joined the USS Theurgy. Looking back up and silently switching her green-eyed attention between the other Diplomats assembled around the table, the black-furred Caitian found herself wavering a little bit. Her beliefs had wavered before, back when Admiral Anderson sent her the encrypted message during her bereavement leave. Upon reading his encrypted message L’Nari had quite honestly considered to either resign her commission, return to Cait and forget about the whole thing or to report the information. In the end, after much inner turmoil, her experiences amidst the catastrophic devastation on Cardassia Prime had compelled her to do her duty as a Diplomat though and help to prevent a repeat of such horrific conflict. When her green eyes came to rest upon Lieutenant Madsen however, now not with silent hatred but rather with a gloomy sadness, the black-furred Diplomatic Attaché couldn’t help but wonder if this was really what she boarded that shuttle to Aldea for; to be subordinate to someone who wouldn’t hesitate to throw her life away and leave her behind to die if it suited the mission.

With yet another sigh, L’Nari turned her green-eyed attention to Lieutenant Commander Rutherford and forced a polite smile onto her face while she did so. ”No questions from me, ma’am.”

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