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There Can Only Be One

Posted on Tue Apr 30th, 2019 @ 4:46pm by Emmah [Kavi] & David Hawkins & Lieutenant Commander Halan Zeti & Lieutenant Commander Mel Torma

Mission: Jarland
Location: Science Lab 3 - U.S.S. Gladiator - A

/// ON ///

Walking through the hall with his assistant and acting Executive officer, David was deep in thought as he wandered about how things were going now that the ship was under way and Jarland was released to the general public. There was no doubt in his mind that he and Halan would be getting a daily report from each department in which Neville decided to barge in on. Even though this mission was supposed to go smoothly, allowing all ship systems and departments to run full system checks of their new areas, the command staff already knew that that wasn't going to happen. Nothing went well when it came to the Jarland family.

As the trio rounded the corner, they were quickly stopped by security officers blocking the hallway to the labs in the science departments while staff worked hard trying to cut up vines with actual saws and metal tools instead of a laser scalpel or phaser. "Uh... Commander, you want to tell me why we are walking into a small forest on my ship?" David mumbled as he looked at his acting XO.

"Yes, I've been reading up on what can motivate your crew, a nice relaxing place can have a big improvement on crew moral," Zeti replied without missing a beat. "This seemed like a good spot for it."

"Is that the captain?" a familiar voice rang out from the other side of the tangle. "Captain, it's Mel. Look, this whole thing is my fault. I left the sample on an observation..."

"... mode and it was enough for the plant to metabolize. It broke out of its *achoo* enclosure and, well if its any consolation this will be going into my report of why this plant..."

"... should be classified as an invasive and dangerous arboreal. It metabolizes energy and heat, hence why it's *achoo* cold on this end, and the security forces are using..."

"... manual means of retrieval. Beam outs are going to be tough due to the vast biomatter of the plant. We're planning to just beam the *achoo* whole of it into space..."

"... once Science is evacuated. Which is just me."

"Then freaking get out of here, Mel!" David called out loudly as he threw his hands in the air. He went over to the plant and started to assist in maneuvering things to allow for the twin form to do just that. As he did, he quickly tapped his combadge real quick. =^= Bridge, this is the captain. Drop us out of warp and stand by transporters and charge phasers.=^=

=^= Aye Captain. =^= the officer in charge called out in response before David finally grabbed onto one of the two forms and started to assist half of her through.

The first half of Mel made it through with a bit of assistance from David. The pair were dressed in cold weather gear, and were almost shivering when the rescue came. When the first half of the Dalacari made it through, though, there was something different about her behavior now that half of her was free. She was more meek. Timid. She scrunched up a little, almost appearing to diminish in stature. Her tail tucked around her feet, she shuffled her hands, her ears were down. She was just a wreck.

"Alrighty, Mel. Your ball. What now?" David questioned as he started to work on the second form as well.

"Oh, um... well." she started, and in her first words it was clear that something was bothering her. Her confidence, her cheerful disposition, everything that made Mel.. MEL... was just kinda there.

Kinda half there.

"I'm sorry." she meeped, "I'll feel a lot better once I'm complete. Sorry. I'm trying not to freak out here."

David worked on pulling her other half through as he grunted slightly. Once they had gotten her out, he looked at the first form and nodded. "Stop saying sorry, commander."

Reunited with herself, Mel's confidence visibly returned. She flourished, rather than wilted, and she stood up straighter. She was honestly about to apologize for saying she was sorry, but instead held her ground. "Free and clear, thank you. As the tangle is one continuous organism, the transporter shouldn't have any trouble beaming it entirely into space. I'm uncertain if that will kill..."

"... the plant on its own. I suppose we'll find out." she sounded a bit excited about the prospect of new data, or maybe she was still coming down off the adrenaline of a near-death experience.

"Oh well crap, hold on..." David stated as he tapped his badge, "Transporter Room 2, lock onto the plant life and send it into space."

Zeti winced, how much were they going to beam out? Were they only going to take the organic matter. "Please be careful not to damage the ship and only beam out the organic matter."

"Once its out, a wide dispersal phaser blast should be enough to destroy the plant without feeding it. Too much energy to convert, and it'll burn up. Just, don't stop until it's dust." she cautioned.

"I'm not entirely sure if that's actually necessary, but I'll personally feel good knowing it's gone."

Scheduled for his walk through of the Science department Neville stepped through the doors of the lab and stopped. His eyes went wide. Almost insistently a tendril of plant wrapped around his leg, tightening like a vice. "What the hell?!" he cried out trying to push the plant off of him, but it was like a tight cord.

Mel's ears perked a bit, "Did you hear that?" she asked the group.

"Damn it..." David muttered as he knew exactly who it was. But without even a chance to respond or react, the transporter beam lit up all over the place. In seconds, the plant was out of sight and on the other side of the hall stood Jarland. "What are you doing down here now, Jarland?"

Zeti folded her arms under her chest and shot a glare in Jarland's direction, but the Captain was here. She wasn't about to jump in and start barking at anyone even if she wanted to.

"I am here to inspect the science department as intended," Jarland spouted off as he looked at the unusual twin form. He was not sure who to talk to or look at but he wasn't impressed with what they had seen.

"Well it can wait a minute," David counted as he raised one hand to express to Neville he was to pause. Then the captain tapped his com badge. "Bridge, this is the captain. Resume course."

He looked over at the science officer and cleared his throat. "Well, Lieutenant, we have seen quite enough. You are not meeting your expectations as a Lieutenant, and your uniforms are incorrect." He smirked and tossed the small oak box to the nearest form. "Open it."

Mel withered for a moment under the scrutiny. Wasn't doing her job? Under expectations? Wrong uniform? One of her twin forms perked at the box and caught it, while the other was still in Mope Mode. As she opened the box, though, the curious expression of excitement spread to the other form like wildfire.

"Oh that's right, I only got you one pup. Sorry, I guess only half of you is promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Commander."

That earned David a pair of glares, "That's. Not. Funny. Sir." a pause, "With respects, thank you sir."

She was silent for a moment, "May I request to withhold until a companion for this pip is available? It's going to be off in my vision the whole day and it just, well... it won't sit well."

David chuckled as he nodded in respect. "Fair enough. DO as you need. But I already brought a second box, just in case you freaked out," the captain pulled out another small box and handed it to her as well. "Congratulations, Commander."

Mel took the second box with a nod. She knew that he knew her foibles, and her psychological state at times. She wore her emotions pretty much right on her sleeve. Symmetry was important, and he knew it. That's WHY he pranked her like that. Her posture shifted to a more relaxed calm as she accepted the second box.

"Thank you sir. I'll not let you down."

/// OFF ///

Captain David Hawkins
Commanding Officer
U.S.S. Gladiator-A


Lieutenant Commander Halan Zeti
Interm Executive Officer
USS Gladiator-A


Lieutenant Commander Mel Torma
Science Officer
USS Gladiator-A


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