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On The Mark

Posted on Fri Aug 4th, 2017 @ 7:30pm by Lieutenant Commander Mel Torma

Mission: Returning Home (Shore Leave)
Location: Holodeck One

"Your marksmanship aptitude score is... 87 out of 100."

Mel looked at the ranking on the wall panel again as the computer announced her score. 87 out of 100 was amazing for anyone else, but in order to qualify as a sharpshooter and potentially become a greater asset to the crew, she had to get that number higher. Each twin shook her head, "Computer, reset assessment training program." and with that all of the targets reset and returned to their original patterns. This time, it was a military installation. Key targets to be removed, being spotted was not an option, the standard rules of counter-ops. She took her positions, with one twin acting as a nearby spotter and the other with a standard Federation long-range rifle.

Zera was hoping to get some time in the holodeck, but as he arrived he saw that it was already in use. Curiosity got the better of him when he saw that it was a training program, the Bajoran decided to take a peek and see what was going on. He walked into a military installation, and from the looks of it the program had just started, so he kept to the shadows and observed.

There were guards roaming around, and there were prisoners. Now the prisoners weren't in cages or cells... the only thing keeping them prisoner were the guards, and the guards didn't quite react to Zera's presence, as this was a marksmanship simulation. So they just wandered around a patrol.

Until one on the outskirts went down. Quick stun pulse and he went down. Then there was a voice, "Oh no, ummm.. live body on the field, pause simulation." and the simulation came to a pause.

"Sorry, I forgot to set the door, but I figured there'd be an evaluator soon so..." and then one twin stopped talking, even while both forms started to close in on the Bajoran. "... I figured I'd get some practice in." said the other twin.

"My name is Mel Torma, it's nice to meet you. Are you the evaluator?" One said, while offering her hand.

Zera was a little surprised when he was spotted, but if the program had been running for as long as it had, surely the assessment had been attempted at least three times, maybe more. Stepping out of the shadows, he saw the two walk up to him, keeping his hands in his pockets. "No, but I can be. It depends on what you are needing evaluated." He stated at the hand for a moment before looking back up and adding, "Zera, I work in Intel. Who's your friend? This is generally a one person assessment."

That threw her for a loop for about a moment, before the pair smiled, "I'm a Dalacari, so despite what you think you're seeing... I'm not twins." one said, though amused in tone. "Dalacari are a binary lifeform so technically this is still a one person assessment."

The next time 'she' spoke, it was her twin that picked up the conversation, "And, pardon my manners, it's nice to meet you Zera. I'm the new assistant science officer though I want to be a little more useful to the crew in a ground based skirmish so..." ans she stopped talking, mid-thought it seemed. Her twin, the initial speaker, picked up the conversation as though she were always the speaker, "... I wanted to get my marksmanship grade up to the point where the Dalacari Provincial Military would authorize the replication of a proper rifle. No offense to your rifles, mind you, just..."

"... the GX-78 was pretty groundbreaking, and I think I could help out with something with some, well, versatility. I wouldn't say no to the 80, but let's be realistic, this far out I'm getting a 78."

Now that he was actually talking with her, he recognized her from the last mission, the one who took Lixor's place when he stepped up to Chief. He still got a slight sense of satisfaction knowing that his superior had done his job well, although he hadn't expected her to leave. She must've been weaker than he thought. He nodded a little to the conversation. "None taken. Personally, I think the Federation rifles are temperamental at best. But after working with them for so long, you start to get a feel for them." He looked around the paused simulation before adding, "if you are practicing, don't let me keep you. If you want a mock evaluator, I can be a stand in."

"This may sound odd, but I feel that you can accomplish more with a physical round than you can with just a phaser beam, but that's just me." she paused to think, a thoughtful look across both the twins faces, "Does it sound off..."

"... when *I* say the phrase 'That's just me'? I mean, I know how it sounds and all but does it sound weird? I want to avoid any future weirdness, while studying outside civilizations."

"But, back to the current, yes. I'd welcome an outside opinion and a mock evaluation. I've set up over there." her silent twin pointed while she continued to speak, "Found a nice sniper nest up there."

The pair started to make their way back over to their designated nest.

Zera raised an eyebrow at how chatty the pair were. "If it feels weird to you, then don't use it," he simply said in response to her query before going to the nest Mel referred to. As he got up into the designated spot, he rolled his neck before spotting Mel off to the side. "Ready when you are."

Mel laid down in a sniper posture, well... one of her did. Her twin was about seven or eight feet away and set to spot. "Computer, reset program and begin." one spoke up, and the military compound began its patrols anew. Seeing her work was eerie. Silent, no comms, no communication, nothing. Just an eerie silence, then the first shot went off. Clean hit, solid stun, no witnesses. She picked off the tail end of a patrol, though without anyone to infiltrate the compound that just meant the next patrol cycle would find the stunned body and raise an alarm.

Essentially, this mission simulation was on a built in timer.

Another shot, another guard. Clean and almost professional, all in silence. Though after a few clean stuns and a bit of overconfidence, Mel made the classic mistake of getting too anxious, and a shot went wide. The alarm was raised, and the simulation ended. The system ranked her performance at 78 this time, lower than her last score. Nervous perhaps, or just too many attempts.

Zera watched, noting that she started out good but then watched her change and eventually make the simulation end. "You tensed," he said, crossing his arms and looking over the nest down at Mel. "After you shot the guard by the rail, your posture changed, which lifted your shoulders and offed your aim. My guess is you started getting either a little too nervous or confident, right?" It was intriguing to watch her silently work, and while he was used to silent attacks, it was different to be watching it instead of doing it.

The shooter gave a nod, taking her hands off the weapon after she secured the safety. "I ... I guess I just want to do well a little *too* much?" she offered. "It could be a little bit nerves. It's the first test I'm actually be observed for so there's that." she mentioned, now both twins turning to look in Zera's direction.

"I'm not making excuses though." The spotter said quickly. "Any advice?"

"Don't think about making the passing score, it will only psych you out," the Bajoran started, leaning into the edge of the rail with his hands as supports. "And treat it like an actual mission instead of a simulation, it will help with focus. Once you start thinking about it as a simulation, it will make you ease up and start thinking as if you know what's going to happen." A little smirk then crossed his features. "And Lieutenant, you are being observed more often than you may think. Never mind the internal sensors and feeds of the ship, but almost every mission you go on will have some sort of surveillance."

The pair nodded together, "I understand." was their initial response. "And, unobtrusive observation I'm used to. Dalacari craft have twice the number of internal sensors than Federation craft, so..."

"... being scanned on the job I'm used to. I meant more in direct observation, sentient to sentient. Though it does feel good to know that when I'm on the field, I'll always have someone..."

"... watching my back. Guardian Angels, I think the humans call them. We don't have angels in our faith, and while I'm not very faithful, I won't turn down any help no matter the source." the pair giggled at this thought before setting up for the next go. "Let's try it again."

Zera merely rolled his eyes, returning to his previous position in his little perch, and watched the two as they got back into their starting positions. He wasn't quite used to Mel's chattiness, and the idea of two bodies sharing one mind was still processing in his head. As the program reset and began its countdown he focused on the simulation, watching the pair move and begin again.


Lieutenant JG Mel Torma
Assistant Chief Science Officer / Exchange Officer
USS Gladiator- A


Lt. JG Zera Leyar
Intelligence Officer
USS Gladiator-A


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