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An Offer He Can't Refuse

Posted on Tue Jul 30th, 2013 @ 9:56am by Captain Jonathon Munster & Ensign Alcide Rennan
Edited on on Tue Jul 30th, 2013 @ 9:59am

Mission: Shakedown Cruise
Location: Deck 2, Captain's Office
Timeline: March 25th, 2267; Afternoon
Tags: 5045, shakedown

Captain Jonathon Munster sits at his desk, a computer monitor to his side displaying the information of a recent arrival to the ship. Jon had noticed the note attached to the young man's name almost immediately when Command send him his roster. A Betazoid Ambassador, a race that the Federation was courting into joining, had sent his telepathic son into Starfleet as a gesture of good will. With the recent developments in the galaxy a telepath would be a huge asset, especially one as gifted at language as this one.

Jon had his choice for Communications Chief on the spot, but he wasn't sure the provisional Ensign would agree. There was also the matter of the necessity of the young man being able to be discreet, both in his personal matters and with information he reflexively gathers from others. He had buzzed the Ensign up earlier, requesting his presence. He was only waiting for him to arrive.

He had been reading over the design specs of the ship when the Captain buzzed him. ~It's show time.~ His mind presented forward. Almost reflexively reached through the ship and touched on the minds present on the ship. He found the Captain's exact location and general demeanor. ~Good, it's not one of those discussions.~ He thought to himself. Heading for the door, he stopped to take a glance in the mirror, "I will never get used to these things." He dusted the front off.

A few minutes had passed by and he reached out and touched the buzzer on the door. ~Five little betazoids sitting on a wall... If.~ He starts to recite in his mind over and over.

Jon immediately replied to the buzzer, "Come in." He leaned back in the chair, immediately sizing up the ensign before him. He was human, except for those slightly disquieting black eyes. Betazoid eyes were like a humans, except they were universally black eyed instead of blue, brown or green. Or so the Captain had been told. He wondered if Ensign Rennan was reading his mind now, and how he would take to being sized up.

"Come, sit down, Ensign." He motions towards the seat on the opposite side of his desk.

The Ensign steps through the door. His own mind racing with the repeating mantra in his mind. Then when addressed by rank the wall comes crashing down. He glances at the man before him. ~The picture didn't do justice.~ "Thank you, Captain." The younger man takes a seat across from the Captain and swiftly and almost effortlessly, sweeps the surface thoughts of the Captain. A slight smile plays on his lips, "I'm curious as to why my father thought it was necessary to send his only son this far away from Starfleet command."

The question was loaded for a reason, Al suspected there was more to this story than he was given, and he intended to find out exactly what it was. Softly, just in case the Captain was sensitive, he pressed on the man's surface thoughts.

Jon stares at the young man with a still hard appraising look, "Look, if you're thinking of reading my thoughts then this is where I'll start. This ship doesn't have all personnel trained to withstand a psychic probe, in fact I'm not sure if it has anyone who is. You'll learn some things, and I need to know if you can keep those things to yourself. If you don't think you can I'd like to ask you to have enough control to keep your mind to yourself. " He reaches out to grab his mug of coffee. He takes a sip appraisingly, "Good, still warm." His manner is softened, almost friendly, "I don't distrust you, but I do have to make sure."

"I don't talk about what I know. At least not intentionally." The Ensign regards the Captain with a look that might unsettle the Captain, it's the look of someone studying the opposing person carefully. "As for reading your mind..." He pauses a moment, "If I had to actually try to read your mind, I'd be impressed. Your mind is an open book, whether I glance at the pages is a different story." He says in a matter of fact tone.

He glances at the cup for a moment. "As for psychic probing, it's not quite the factual terminology, I prefer to consider it empathic probing. Slight difference, as I glean your emotional state as well." He leans back, "But then you already probably knew this. My file is quite extensive, I spent three months letting Starfleet test my skills and limits." He shrugs, "Somethings they don't need to know." He offers a bit of a laugh. "So, are you going to dodge my question, or answer it?" ~He is toying with me. He's a smart one, but then they always think they are....~

Jon takes another sip of coffee, "I don't suppose I'll be able to keep the information from you, at least not unless you decide to teach me how to keep you out, but until then I'll be frank with you with what I think you should know. I'll ask you not probe deeper because I like to be open with what I can be." He sets his mug back down on it's coaster and leans forward slightly to rest his arms on the desk, "Last year the USS Enterprise encountered a Romulan ship on this side of the Neutral Zone. They were able to access that ship's view screen system and discovered that the Romulans look almost exactly like the Vulcans. I've had first hand experience with that myself. The reason you are here is because this ship is testing the next generation of warp drive, and the recent accident this ship had wasn't an accident. My former first officer was a Romulan spy. I never did know he wasn't Vulcan till the end."

He studies the young man as he speaks, judging the effect the story has on him.

"That makes sense." Al pauses a moment. He plays on his own thoughts for a moment before he continues, "I understand it now." A swift sweep of the entire ship happens in the blink of an eye. He sensing for any deep seeded deception. There are a couple of pings on that sensation and he raises an eyebrow. "I did not know they looked similar. That would explain the core fundamental similarities in their core linguistics models. I noticed this when assisting with the creation of the Universal Translators." He makes another mental note. "I have some upgraded linguistics databases to install on this ships system."

"Now that, that is out of the way, we can move on to the further discussions." ~Like do you have a wife?~ He idly thinks to himself. "My father indicated in my orders that I was supposed to be here to assist with new alien languages that you encountered. He also said you would have been given further orders from Starfleet, and that I was encouraged strongly to comply." He pauses, "So... What are they?"

Jon seems to be deciding how best to deal with Al, and seems to make a decision quickly, "I'll get to the point, you seem to like that, ensign. I want you to be the Chief Communications Officer aboard the Vesuvius. I suspect with a project like this ship and the questionable decision to send it fully out into the unknown that we haven't seen the last of the Romulans. I also suspect that it's likely we'll run across some species or another that isn't in our library computer and we won't even be able to talk to it without someone of your skills." He leans back into his chair again, "You're a little young, but I think you could handle the responsibility."

~Young?~ He pauses on that for a moment, "Chief Communications Officer, huh?" Al pauses again on that. He looks at the Captain for a moment. "I do speak nine languages, including Terran and Betazoid. Languages happen to be a forte of mine." He nods, "I have been training nearly all my life. When you're born a telepath, you tend to have to start learning at an early age." He shakes his head a bit. "You have no idea, the kind of information I've gleaned on accident."

"As per my father's instructions, I have little choice but to accept your trust in me for the position. I hope that I do live up to the challenge you've set before me." He straightens his shirt at the waist. "As for the psychic training, I can assist you with it. But it will not be easy. I would strongly suggest that you and at least your department heads take lessons in basic defense, due to the nature of the vessel..." He leans forward, "If there are any one on the command staff you wish to question, I can assist in that manner to, without being invasive. Empathy has uses as lie detection too." He glances at the Captain with a telling eye.. ~I see right through you...~

Jon nods and then waves his hand dismissively, "I don't want to know if your father wants you to have the position. I'm not asking your father. I'm asking you, Mr. Rennan. Do you want to be Chief Communications Officer on this vessel? Do you want to work with encryption, learning new languages on the fly, and to keep the crew of this vessel safe in all ways that you, as an officer, can?" He studies the young officer for a brief pause, "I won't lie to you, the position won't always be easy, but it will be rewarding."

"The answer is yes. Of course, my father's wishes just happens to coincide with my own. However, I would do whatever he wished of me. I am his legacy, after all." There is a bit of pride in his voice. "Besides, this is important for my people. And my father's work is his life. I'm very committed to his dream. I believe that the Federation is a good choice." He pauses, "As for hard work? I have had my fair share of it, and it doesn't scare me. I will be the best possible Chief Comm officer that you will ever see. My abilities tend to allow me to learn them a bit faster than most." He smirks slowly.

Jon stands up and offers his hand to shake, "Then welcome to the ship, Ensign. However this does mean that you are a full member of this crew. You may not be a full member of Starfleet, but this crew operates by their rules. I know Starfleet asked you to be mindful of the sensibilities of most of the crew. I would also appreciate it if you addressed your superiors by their rank. I care less than some, but this is a new crew and I can't relax those standards at this time. Some of the other officers will chafe at an Ensign not showing the traditional curtesies."

"Ensign isn't my actual rank, though." Al reminds the Captain, "But as you wish, Captain. I'll abide by that little courtesy." He takes the offered hand. "And thank you, for your honesty. It is refreshing coming from your Species. Most of you hide behind false masks, and it is quite a task to discern the truth from the lies." He releases the hand. "Is that all, Captain?"

The older man shakes his head as his hand drops to his side, "A couple more things. Asking you to aid in the finding of spies isn't an invitation to peruse my crew's thoughts. I don't want you going through people's personal things, as it were, unless there's cause to suspect. This isn't a witch hunt. On the Ensign matter, provisional or not, it's how you'll be addressed. If you decide to stay with us I'm authorized to give you access to the library computer aboard this ship." He motions to the monitor attached to the side of his otherwise plain desk, "You should have a terminal in your room that you can use to get the final courses from the academy. If you wish, Starfleet informed me that if you complete the exams on those courses I can remove the provisional bit of your title, and use your experience before hand as duty actually served. There is upwards movement for those who want to move up in the fleet, Mr. Rennan. Let me know if you choose to go down that path."

He motions back towards the door as he takes his seat, "You're free to return to whatever you were working on. Tomorrow you should get to know the other communications specialists on board. Thank you for your time, Ensign."

"Of course." That's all Al responds to the entire speech given to him. He gives a swift, polite nod and moves through the door. ~Mental note, watch this one.~ He quickly tucks away. The door shuts behind him and decides its time to find the hydroponics lab. ~Bonzai. Need Bonzai.~


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