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Seeing Double?

Posted on Wed Jul 17th, 2019 @ 8:03am by Lieutenant Commander Kordan Zak [Hawkins] & Lieutenant Commander Mel Torma

Mission: A new perspective
Location: Executive Officer's Office - U.S.S. Gladiator

/// ON ///

Lieutenant Commander Kordan Zak looked puzzled as he looked at the Padd in his hands before looking at the two formed member before him sitting across from him. As a trill, and an intel, he had heard about life forms like this, but to actually meet one in person... This was something completely unusual to say the least. The new XO took in a deep breath before nodding and breaking the silence.

"Umm... Good morning, Commander. It is a pleasure to meet you in person for once. How are you?" the first officer started finally.

She was patient and friendly, a smile on each face as he went over the PaDD. His glances from it, to her, from it, to her... When the silence was finally shattered, she only kept her smiles alive.

"Good morning." one of her forms replied, while the other just remained steady and smiling. "It's a pleasure to meet you as well sir. Always a pleasure to meet new people." Mel offered, always cheerful and welcoming.

"So far things are good, department wise. Personally, I suppose I'm a bit confused, or even a little concerned about what just happened, but until we get a proper resolution there's..." her previously silent twin was the one that was speaking now, but that came to a halt shortly thereafter. Her twin picked up the conversation next.

"... really no point in worrying. I have faith." she smiled twice. "Now, I know that first time meetings with a Dalacari can be a bit daunting. Feel free to ask me anything you want." she offered. Diplomacy and open mindedness were most important in situations like this.

"I can see how it can be daunting, for sure," the trill raised his eye brow slightly before smirking and nodding respectfully. "I wanted to see what your side of what happened with your previous command staff was like. It is part of my job on Gladiator to investigate this matter and ensure that all crew are able to express their concerns."

"I'll do my best to stay in one area. Single Instance lifeforms find it a little more comforting if they don't have to track..."

"... each half of me. Though, judging from what I know of some of the races from the other side of the cosmos, I'm going to ..."

"... guess you're a Trill. Which means you're familiar with the concept of a lifeform occupying more than one body, but that's..."

"... about as close as our two species get. No offense, mind you. It's just nice to know that I can talk about a topic and you'll have a ..."

"... point of reference. As for your question, well..." she didn't shift focus, she just grew distant for a moment. "Hawkins was always fair, though not always the most..."

"... straightforward. Though I guess cultural differences stopped me from picking up social cues. Though, he was always patient with me." she continued.

"When I heard that he had been branded as an enemy of the state, I was actually shocked. More so than the fact that I was the second officer..."

"... of the Gladiator to be honest. That took a bit to sink in." she admitted. "Last time I was in charge of the Gladiator it was a bit..."

"Lonely." the pair said in sync.

"Well, at the time being, you are still assigned as our 2nd XO. Even though your loyalty has been questioned, you have proven to myself and the Captain that you know to follow the rules and regulations of the Federation and Starfleet command, even as a foreign exchange officer," Zak responded as he looked over the padd for new information.

To that, she gave a pair of nods, "I see the truth of the concern, and take no umbrage at the thought."

The PaDD was a simple report of the readiness of the Science department. Though, simple... by Dalacari definition. It seemed that everything was itemized.


Perhaps she threw herself into her task to distract her from current events, or perhaps she really was that meticulous. Either way was hard to say, but the report was immaculate.

"In the time you have served aboard the Gladiator and under Captain Hawkins and Commander Kavi, have you ever felt as though they have broken any rules or regulations?" Zak asked as he went down the lines of questions.

"Honestly, yes." she paused, "BUT... sometimes you have to. Rules and Regulations exist for the greatest number of situations but..."

"... sometimes you find yourself in a situation where the rules that apply weren't designed for the situation you find yourself in. Be that..."

"... as it may, whenever something came up that went against code, I never personally felt that I was being put in greater danger than I was before." a pause.

"Actually, quite the opposite. Hawkins and Kavi respected my fragile nature more than anything else. Maybe even putting my personal safety over anyone..."

"... else under their command. Maybe that was a little unfair, but I was always silently grateful they did it. It didn't happen often, but when it did..."

"... I always was confident that it was for the right reason. What's that quaint human expression? Doing the wrong thing for the right reason."

"And doing the right thing, isn't always the right thing at all," Zak murmured as he had heard similar things in the past from humans from his own experiences, not to mention all the other lives the Zak symbiote had lived through to experience. So far, he wasn't really catching those things that Admiral Jarland or the Commander Jarland were harping on with the command staff. But Commander Jarland and a hand full of their trusted personal knew Hawkins and Kavi in much more depth than he did. That didn't give him the right to sway one way or the other. It was his responsibility to investigate and take a new position as their new leaders on the Gladiator.

"Then, I take it you know? About the paradox of order?" she asked. "Order can't exist except in a vacuum. The moment you introduce..."

"... outside elements, Order becomes impossible. Now, I'm not talking anarchy, but Order needs... oh what's the term... it's when you can..."

"... adapt and bend and WIGGLE ROOM!" and then she realized how accidentally loud she was, and she withered a bit, "Sorry. But yes, wiggle room."

"I feel that Hawkins knew the value of wiggle room. His crew, his friends, maybe not the most squeaky clean people but..."

"... I feel they were the right people for the task. As for him taking risks, waking up in the morning is a risk." she paused, "Does that..."

"... make any sense?"

"Of course. I still don't condone the action of running and stealing a runabout as his final action," the trill explained. But did that allow for some evidence of his innocence? "So do you believe the official reports from the Romulan crew of him killing their captain?"

"I suppose once we all find him, we can ask him why he did what he did." she mentioned, though at his question she shook her heads, "I do not. I believe that their captain may have been killed, but I can't believe that..."

"... he did it in some form of cold blood. Maybe there was a fight? Maybe there was a hostage situation and the captain was killed to allow the hostage taker to escape and Hawkins..."

"... took off in pursuit of the killer? I don't mean to sound like I'm clutching at straws or looking for the needle in the haystack, but if the alternative is that Hawkins took a mission..."

"... where he planned to murder the captain of the craft he accepted the responsibility to safeguard." she paused, "And that doesn't make any sense."

"No, it does not make sense at all. But, again, we are not the ones that get to decide any of this. We just need to follow the orders of those that know better," He signed as he looked at the Padd before him. "What about your fellow co-workers? Do you believe they have a part out of all this?"

"You're right. That's not our call." she admitted, and it didn't sound hollow or upset. Simple facts.

At the follow up question, she gave the matter some thought, "A lot of the crew is prone to violence. I've noticed that that seems to be true for a lot of people in..."

"... Starfleet, but I understand why. Space exploration is dangerous. Starfleet has an entire branch dedicated to diplomacy, and three departments dedicated to offensive measures." she paused.

"Obviously Security, then Tactical and to a point, Ops. But, not the point. The point is yeah, the crew of the Gladiator is rough on the edges. Yes the crew has been through a..."

"... lot, and yes if someone threatened them or a member of the crew I think killing a man is well within their capacity. Were they in on this? Did they have a part in this?" she shook both her heads.

"No. I don't believe they did. Because unless a very specific set of circumstances lined up exactly right, the captain of that Romulan freighter was just any other captain..."

"... out in space. Not some long lost enemy of Hawkins and his crew of misfits and scoundrels, setting a dastardly trap involving their own death and the discrimination of Hawkins."

"Rather than, you know, just luring him onto the ship and killing him there." she offered, before deflating a little, "I'm sorry, I should stick to answering your questions. I'm sorry."

"Don't be sorry, Commander. It is just part of my job to pop any and all possible questions. So don't feel bad at all. The Gladiator has been cleared for our next mission after the captain has briefed us all on the mission at hand, we will be launching from Deep Space 5. How is your department and personal coming along?"

She gave a pair of nods. "Sciences is ready for anything the ship needs to throw at us." she stated, simple and direct. "We're using a little more power than spec these days since I'd like to..."

"... keep Delta Eighty Six operational as an auxiliary calculation engine. It's very useful in tracking long term outcomes. I can have a specification..."

"... sheet prepared for your perusal if you wish, as it is technically a piece of Alien technology. Well, as alien as I am to you, I mean."

"I will have to approve this with the Captain before approving of this. It requires his final approval. Of course, if you prefer to talk to the Captain directly and express your desires, I believe he would be open to hearing you directly on this technology and your skillset," Zak offered as he stood up to signal the end of their meeting.

"Of course. Seeing as I probably will be meeting with them shortly, I'll save you the walk." she offered with a pair of smiles. As he stood, so did the binary forms of Mel Torma. "Thank you again for your time."

Of course, she didn't leave until she was dismissed. Would be rude otherwise.

He looked at her for a moment and wandered what she was waiting for as she blinked at him. "Oh... umm... dismissed..." the trill responded as he was surprised as to how well the alien before him had been so professional compared to others he had dealt with.

/// OFF ///

Lt. Commander Kordan Zak
Executive Officer
U.S.S. Gladiator-A
(played by Hawkins)


Lieutenant Commander Mel Torma


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