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System Lag

Posted on Fri Jun 24th, 2016 @ 6:52am by Commander Akiva ben-Avram & Captain Claudia Ainscow

Mission: S1E1 - Booby Trap
Location: Transporter Room 1
Timeline: Mission Day 1; 15:30


This was it. When Akiva had stepped on the transporter pad in Starbase Unity, he said a quiet goodbye to his former, familiar post aboard the Sequoyah. The brief shore leave had been good for him in a way. Not because he was going to miss his old crew -- they had vidcoms to keep in touch. He had been on that ship for years. Every EPS conduit, every Jefferies tube junction, every control panel and data port had become daily fixtures in his life. After several years as Assistant Chief of Ops, Akiva had had that ship running like a top. And now here he was, stepping into a full leadership position on a ship he knew only from schematics. Undoubtedly untrustworthy schematics, if experience proved true. Performance ratings were always averaged, which means the final product, though polished, could never be more than average. Only a competent staff of engineers and ops specialists could make a vessel spaceworthy and keep her that way.

~HaShem, light my path~ Akiva folded his hands over his heart in a brief prayer. The transporter beamed to the Vindex. ~B'ruq HaShem~

When he materialized on the teleportation pad in Transporter Room 1 of the Vindex, Akiva met the friendly face of the Bajoran transporter operator with a scowl.

"Um, welcome aboard, sir," said the Bajoran. "I'm Petty Officer Har Blix."

Akiva left his luggage on the pad and stepped toward the transporter console. "Mr. Har, can you tell me why the transporter system lagged a good 3 seconds longer than optimum?"

"I, well, no," Blix stammered. "Respectfully, the transporter is operating within acceptable parameters, sir."

"'Optimum' is acceptable because 'acceptable' is a recipe for inefficiency," Akiva said. He gestured for Blix to step back. "If I may." A few deft finger strokes across the console pulled up a diagnostic which read green.

"See, sir? She's top notch." Blix folded his hands behind his back.

"We'll see about that," Akiva said, kneeling down to remove the side panel to the console to examine its innards. "Please tell me you have a tricorder at hand."
Blix shook his head and left to retrieve one without waiting for the order.

Customarily Akiva figured he should probably go and find the commanding officer since she had not been here to greet him. But what is custom when a system's integrity was at stake?
~Surely Commander Ainscow will understand and approve~

Claudia was in the area and knew that she was expecting the Vindex's Chief Operations Officer to arrive any time now. Deciding to pay a visit to Transporter Room 1 to ask for an update on Lieutenant ben-Avram's arrival from Starbase Unity from Chief Har she walked in to find Akiva had indeed arrived and he was found to be working on the transporter system. Hard at work already? Claudia liked to see that.

"Ah you must be Lieutenant ben-Avram," Claudia said.

Sparing but a moment's glance, Akiva nodded at Claudia. "Yes, ma'am." He grunted at a stubborn component that refused to budge. "You must be the Captain. I may have arrived a tad early, and it's a good thing I did. This transporter is embarrassingly slow." The component came loose with a pop, sending Akiva back on his hind end. He caught himself with his hands. Only then did he half smile. "I, eh, meant to do that."

Claudia observed what Akiva was doing. From his explanation of the situation he felt the transporters could do with some improvement - something Claudia was in favour of. Efficiency was always important - that extra second or two with the transporter could prove vital in the future.

"I am indeed, Lieutenant. I'm glad to see you're getting down to work as soon as you've arrived...that's always a good thing. Would you like a hand with anything? Being from an Operations background myself it'd be nice to roll back the years," Claudia replied.

Akiva balked at the suggestion. ~Does she not think I'm capable on my own?~
"Quite all right, Captain," he said abruptly. "I have it well enough in hand, I think." He gave the component a few twists before replacing it. "I just needed to amplify the power setting to the power control module for the transporter's sensor array. Drydock always tunes it down to get a longer life out of it, but it's a common part. Just means more preventative maintenance this way..." Akiva trailed off as he saw the smirk spread across Claudia's face. "But I'm not telling you anything you don't already know, am I?" He chuckled nervously. "I suppose you could replace the panel cover if you'd like."

Claudia liked his attitude even if the response to her offer was a little abrupt - she knew that sometimes people preferred to do things alone for various reasons. Back when she was a Chief Operations Officer she was very much the same - although she was more willing to receive assistance as time went on. Claudia liked watching her crew go about their daily tasks and liked to help where possible.

"If you'd like me to do that for you, Mr. ben-Avram, then that's what I'll do," Claudia replied.

"Well, I thought you wanted, well, no." Akiva scratched his neck. "I'll just pop this back into place." He slid the panel cover into its notched grooves and secured it. He dusted off his hands to wipe away imaginary grime, a habit from his adolescence spent servicing his remote colony. "Now, what was it I can do for you, Captain?"

Claudia chuckled and watched Akiva replace the panel back into position. It seemed like very good timing on her part - coming down to ask Chief Har for an update on Akiva's arrival and she found him hard at work improving the efficiency of the transporters. Talk about good timing.

"Well I had come to visit Chief Har to ask about when you were arriving but you're already here - so I thought I'd introduce myself whilst it was convenient," Claudia replied.

"Excellent," Akiva said. He put his hand out, then faltered. "Well, I guess we've already been introduced, so I'll just say thank you for welcoming me personally."

Claudia smiled and extended a hand to give her Operations officer a handshake. She decided it would be best to let him get on with what he needed to do and to settle in aboard the Vindex ahead of their imminent departure.

"I shall leave you to it then, Mr. ben-Avram. If you need anything you know where to find me," Claudia replied.

Blinking. Akiva realized he was doing it excessively. Had he offended? No, probably not. If the commander was worth her salt, she would be as busy as he was likely to be. If not, well, then she would get over it. He nodded as much in acknowledgement as much as an excuse to break eye contact. "Very good. And I will be, well, you know how to reach me." He tapped his communicator while giving a nervous chuckle. "Until next time." Akiva retrieved his luggage and left the transporter room before asking the ship computer for directions to his quarters.



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