Opportunities come to those who earn them
Episode 1: The Maelstrom Awaits
Location: Ready Room
Timeline: Day 13 at 1955
Nogura had barely been at Deep Space Twelve for an hour and already much had changed. Teams from both the ship and the station were working hard to transfer the supplies they had transported to the region, including the specialist warp core that had been requisitioned for one of the ships being refit.
Perhaps the biggest changes had been in the personnel department as the Captain of the Nogura now faced the very real proposition of going in to the Maelstrom with two key officers missing. Lieutenant T'Pasek had been recalled to the starship Al-Batani, thus leaving the Nogura without their Chief Science Officer on the even of entering one of the most volatile regions of space. Arguably the most damaging change fo the lot was the sudden, but not unwelcome, promotion of Commander Adams. Nogura's first officer found herself transferred to assume command of the aforementioned Al-Batani, joining the Vulcan scientist on his trip to the Century-class starship.
Of course, all this had come with a message from Admiral Gor; a message with a lead on their impending investigation and whilst the Captain couldn't do anything about the science vacancy just yet (though people across the sector were now trying to work their magic to find a suitable replacement), there was something she could do about the vacant executive officer position.
In fact, it was for that reason that the Trill had called Lieutenant Commander Fargold to her ready room, where she now waited patiently.
Deila buzzed the ringer on the door to Captain Azulas' ready room, hurriedly straightening her uniform. It wasn't every day one got called into the Captain's ready room.
"Enter!" the voice from within beckoned, a slightly more welcoming tone than usual to it.
She walked into the room, after the door slid open with a quiet pssshhh. Approaching Azulas, she nodded respectfully once, before clasping her hands behind her back.
"Is there something you need Captain?" She asked.
"Please, take a seat Commander," the Captain smiled as she welcomed the strategist into her private work space and gestured to the nearby sofa area. "We've had a lead reach us from Admiral Gor," the Trill revealed as she rose from her seat and moved to meet the Terran at the sofa.
Deila stepped over to the sofa, sitting down. The Captain's tone was slightly different than her usual professional demeanor, so this lead must have her excited. Which was rather unusual, considering she just lost her XO.
"We could definitely do with some fresh evidence," Deila said jokingly. "It's not easy working with just a handful of sensor logs and whatever else we can scrape together."
"According to Starfleet Intelligence, a live signal has been detected at the Nogura's last reported location within the Maelstrom prior to the Ferengi taking ownership of her," the Captain told, perching in one of the vacant chairs opposite the Strategic Operations Officer. "I'd like you to look it over with Chura, and if it is a viable lead, we'll head their as soon as the last of the cargo transfers are complete," Azulas declared.
"Of course captain," Deila replied, nodding slowly. "I hate to be leaving DS12, when we only just arrived. I hear they put on a welcoming party for us and everything."
She squinted just a little as they conversed. The Captain didn't seem at all too shaken by the fact that she lost her XO at such a moment's notice. Deila had expected the Trill to be at least a LITTLE worried.
"I'm sorry Commander, ah, Captain Adams was recalled to the Al-Batani. She was an excellent officer."
"Captain Adams is one of the best," Nilani smiled, nodding knowingly and pondering how long she should keep the the strategist in the dark on her plans. She could play the game a little longer, but opted not to. "How would you feel about stepping into her shoes?" the Trill finally asked after a few more moments of quiet.
Deila blinked once, not comprehending, then blinked again. The captain's words then made themselves clear and she gasped a little. "Captain I...I would be honored to do so," she said, a little flustered. "I can't hope to replace Adams but I...I'll do my best."
She sat back, her head tilted just a little, keeping her gaze steady on the captain. She couldn't appear flustered or overly excited. She had to keep a professional calm, and yet it wasn't just any day your captain considers you for the first officer's position.
"Excellent. When you leave here, have the duty officer enter the change of position in the duty log and get to work on the analysis of that signal. If there is so much as an iota of a possibility that the lead will help us in our investigation, we have to pursue it," the Captain advised strongly.
"Of course Captain," Deila replied, just as strongly. Things were at stake here that were beyond anything she'd ever imagined. An entire crew, possibly still alive, and if not, the revelation of what happened to them. "Strat Ops will work 'round the clock."
"Excellent news," the Captain grinned, rising from her chair to congratulate the new XO. Offering out a hand and a warm smile, she nodded to her newest first officer.
Deila followed suite, rising and taking the hand of Captain Azulas, rather vigorously from her narrowly contained excitement. "I appreciate the opportunity captain. I...honestly I never expected a senior command position like First Officer for several more years."
"Opportunities come to those who earn them Commander," Azulas grinned, nodding slowly and releasing the woman's hand. "You deserve this opportunity, Deila."
Deila grinned girlishly for a second, before regaining control over herself, brushing a strand of hair out of her eyes. "I'm glad you think so Captain. I...never had much confidence in myself as a leader, to be frank. That's one of the reasons I switched from Security to Strat Ops. I'm not charismatic like so many others in my field of work, and that led to some...problems." She winced, remembering the incident on the Panama with Ensigns Gaphi and Yamato.
"And I never expected to be back in the Captain's chair once taking on my role with the Admiralty, but the galaxy moves in mysterious ways, Number One..." she trailed off. The use of the Number One moniker just another hint at the Commander's newly inflated level of importance to the ship and crew. In truth, Fargold was NOT an Azulas-type XO; for a start, the Trill always preferred a bolshy male by her side, but this version of Nogura was turning out to be quite different.
Deila looked into the Captain's eyes, before nodding and clasping her hands behind her back. "If the galaxy moves, we'll move with it. We'll find the answer to our questions, and the crew will do their best, you can count on that."
Nilani smiled at the calm assurance of the new XO. "Then you are dismissed, Number One," she instructed with a single, firm nod straight out of the Janeway playbook itself.
Deila nodded, then turned about and headed for the door, her contained excitement barely concealed under the surface. She'd make good on this promotion and be the best first officer she could be, that she swore.