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Two Intelligence Officers, One Titan

Posted on Wed Nov 10th, 2021 @ 4:29am by Captain Thomas Ward & Lieutenant Commander Finchley Kerr

Mission: The Story of a First Contact Launch Day
Location: Ready Room, USS Titan
Timeline: 2411.03.10 1330 Hours

The fresh coffee on his desk steamed lightly with a small amount of cream added to the mixture of the beverage. Just the way he liked it. Not too plain, but not too overdone with extras. Thomas stood beside his desk with a itinerary for the rest of his day. It was mostly uneventful, despite the Titan being behind schedule. He took a glance at his PADD and made a mental note that his new Chief Intelligence Officer would be here any moment.

Captain Ward looked outside his window, which currently overlooked Earth from the Titan's current location in dry-dock at McKinley Station. For the first few months of the Titan's life, the ship was at the still recovering Utopia Planitia Ship Yards, but do to a mass amount of ships coming out of the mothball fleet, even though many of the current wars had already passed, the Titan was transferred to McKinley after the basic propulsion systems came online.

Distracted, Ward nearly didn't hear the door chime sound. He took a quick sip of his coffee and set the drink and his PADD on the desk and took a seat. "Enter" he called out.

The doors to the Ready Room opened and Finchley walked in. Seeing the Senior Officer seated at the desk on the far side of the room, he walked over and presented the PADD he had with him saying " Lieutenant Commander Finchley Kerr, your potential new Chief Intelligence Officer, reporting as ordered Sir."

Thomas stood up and accepted the PADD and held out his hand to the new officer. "Welcome aboard Commander. Can I get you anything to drink?" He placed the PADD on his desk.

Taking the officers hand, he shook it firmly saying "Thank you Sir, and yes, if there's an apple jiuce going that would be very acceptable, it's been a bit of a journey getting here and it would be quite refreshing."

"Very well" He strolled over to the replicator. "One apple juice please."

Soon after, the juice appeared in the replicator. Ward took the juice and handed it to the Commander. "I apoligize if the ship is more or less a mess.. We are behind schedule for our intended launch date" he took a sip of his coffee. "Which is First Contact Day believe it or not" he chuckled as he sat down. "Given your journey to get back to Earth, was it too much trouble?"

Finchley nodded his thanks for the apple juice and took a good drink of it, smacking his lips when he'd finished.

"That's most welcome, thanks" he said "In regards to the ships readiness for launch, I know from past experience how things can be when you're trying to work to a schedule and all goes awry, I've learned to just go with it to be honest Sir. The journey back was a little bit fractious, given I'd just finished the assignment I'd been on. We were quite far out, so two shuttles, a freighter, another shuttle and a final Akira Class ship later, I finally managed to crawl here" he laughed.

The CO chuckled. "Back when I was assigned to Starfleet Intelligence before I joined the original Titan, there were countless long-term journeys that I endured myself. But, I digress" Thomas sighed. "Now, I understand that I have your record in front of me. But, I'd like to hear the highlights from you. If that is alright with you Commander?"

"Well, I spent the first few years onboard the USS Frannery Sir, in the Security Department" Finchley began "Primarily the ships missions were based around diplomatic escorts and historical treaty repatriations. It was roughly ten years after the Dominion War and the aftermath of it had left many planets laid bare to attack and conquest from unscrupulous cultures. After a couple of years I was enlisted into Intelligence on the recommendation of my then CO, Captain Zamos. He had connections, and he could thought the experience I'd gained could be put to better use than just Security measures. Many of the missions I undertook in Intelligence pertained to the tracking down of Dominion War criminals, bringing them to justice if you will, though some of them didn't go exactly to plan, you'll know that yourself. There were also missions to try and ascertain if the Dominion had really been defeated completely, there were rumours of factions still fighting on, trying to gain new allies, rebuild their fleet, new training planets and so on. I mean no disrespect Sir, but I don't know your Intelligence clearance level, so for the moment I'd like to leave it at that. Once I returned to Starfleet, I was promoted and assigned to the USS Baxter under Captain Bradley and those missions were more exploration based, making first contacts etc. Once again I was enlisted back into Starfleet Intelligence, this time serving on the USS Patterson, those files for the moment are sealed by order of Intelligence HQ. Once my tour was finished, I was once again brought back into Starfleet and applied for a posting here on the USS Titan as I saw there was a vacancy. I ddn't want to go back to Security you see, not after, well, just after" he finished.

"Interesting story. The Dominion War, and the aftermath was a rather hard time for us all" Thomas sighed. "As for my clearance level, I may have more access than other Captains. Where I got that is classified" he said half jokingly. "But, if there is anything in the future that needs the attention of someone with a high clearance level, you can bring it to me. That is, if it is not above my clearance" he said honestly.

"To be frank Sir, I'm a level nine green operative" Finchley replied "the only clearance level above myself and probably you, is the Starfleet Intelligence Council and they're all Admiralty rank equivalent and are level nine black operatives. Again, I mean no disrespect to you, but if I wanted to find out about anything you've done, all I need to do is ask and I can get it. I have no doubt you'll most likely be the same as after your reply just now, I'm assuming you'll be the same operative level as myself."

Finchley took a drink of his apple juice and added "We're both high level operatives Sir, let's not try and pull the wool over the others eyes with any talk of secrecy and 'that's classified' now that we both know what the others operational readiness is. Isn't it better we pool our resources so it's an additional arrow in our bow so to speak?"

"That might be a good idea. To be honest Commander, I could also probably talk to the council and find out anything you've done" Thomas chuckled, taking a sip of coffee after. "Jokes aside, we do have the advantage of our own resources. Given our intelligence status and all."

"That'll come in very handy Sir" Finchley replied "so, whilst I'm here, if you don't mind me asking, what's going to be our first mission?"

"That's a good question. That, I unfortunately don't know the answer to" Thomas sighed. "That being said, I have a feeling that we'll have a small shakedown. After that I suspect our first mission will be exploration based, or some sort of diplomatic endeavour, given the state of the galaxy at the moment."

Finchley's interest was now piqued, so he asked "If you had a preference Sir, after the shakedown of course, what mission would you personally choose?"

"Well Commander, to be honest, with the current state of the quadrant and the rest of the galaxy, I would like to return to our roots of exploration. However, I feel to do that, we need to resolves and repair fractured or strained relationships first."

"Yes, the political landscape is somewhat strained to say the least Sir" Finchley replied "if you don't mind me asking, how do you see it being resolved...providing it can be that is?" he added.

Thomas scratched his chin. "That's good question. Before the Klingon Civil War, the Alliance between the Federation, Romulan Republic, and the Klingon Empire was created. Of course, that was strained during the Klingon Civil War. Truth be told, we need to show other factions and major powers that we are still explorers. We also need to aide other factions where we can" he replied.

"If I'm honest Sir, for me, the Klingons can keep fighting their civil wars, house against house as much as they want, it keeps them busy and not fighting anyone else" Finchley replied "The Romulan Republic isn't a Republic any longer, it's just a series bitter feuds...much like the Klingon's in a way. They to can be left alone to petty squabble till their hearts content. We need to unite the outer planets, bring them into the Federation by offering them foods, supplies, specialist help in whatever area's they're lacking. This won't be an invasion force, we won't have regular crews or guards or anything, this will be a civilian led offer of help. But, I will also offer a word of wisdom if I may Captain. Everything's not what it seems at the moment, Starfleet may be looking to go out exploring once more, but there's word coming back to us that old enemies have been spotted. Not in great numbers, but they're there none the less. There's also rumours of strange goings on like empty patrol ships returning, whole area's of some worlds being barren when they were well kept days before."

Thomas thought for a moment before selecting his next words. "But, the best we can do is to try. As for our old enemies, and the empty patrol ships, you may submit a report to me and I'll relay it to Command" he sighed. "Unfortunately there isn't much I can do until we launch."

"I'll send it to you by tomorrow Sir" Finchley replied. He stood up and placed his empty glass on the desk, saying "I hope you don't mind Captain, but I must also check in with Intelligence HQ to say I've arrived here in the Titan, then write up that report. Thank you for the drink and the chat, I look forward to us launching soon, in the meantime, if you need me, I'll be in my office."

"That is alright Commander" he answered. "You're dismissed" he said as he watched his new Chief Intelligence Officer walk out of his office. As Kerr walked out Thomas called out, "Oh and Commander, welcome to the Titan."


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