Chapter 1 - Give Me Your Best

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There was a chime, which Yoshi had been inclined to ignore for a moment. On the third chime however, he heaved a sigh and looked up from his PaDD. “Come,” he said, adjusting his position in his chair. It had been a week since everything had been finalized, and at this point he was already getting stir crazy, reading through stacks of movement reports and fleet judgements. The door hissed open, and the Admiral’s demeanour seemed to change in a moment as he smiled, standing from his desk. “Well I’ll be damned, Captain Klans,” he said, stretching a hand to the man who approached him.

“Sorry to drop in without warning, Admiral Minawara,” the man replied, a half smile on his face. Captain Aeron Klans grasped his friend’s hand firmly, before the pair moved in for a huge. “It’s been too long since we’e caught up, I am sorry for that,” he added, breaking the embrace and stepping back to study his friend. “Have you gotten fat?” A swift, friendly smack from the Admiral and the pair stood laughing for a moment.

“Don’t apologize for being away, Starfleet Corps of Engineers is keeping you run ragged chasing experimental designs and upfitted starships. I hear you even had a hand in getting the new Ross-class to production standards,” Yoshi said, gesturing to the desk so bother could sit. Aeron uttered a grunt of annoyance at the mention of the Ross, and nodded towards a collection of small gold starships on his desk, desperately trying to change the subject. Carefully he picked one up, the largest of the collection and studied it.

His eyes glanced up at Yoshi, one different from the other, and squnited. “Funny you’d keep this,” he said, placing the small statue down. “Last thing I remember you didn’t care to be reminded of the Vikrant-class.” Yoshi offered a shrug.

“Perspectives change.”

“As for the Ross, she was a monster. The Galaxy refits for the Dominion War were a nightmare, and most of what we had left to deal with. Andromeda, Cassiopia, and Virgo were mostly in pieces by the time we got our hands on them. Barely any ship left, and then, they gave me fresh Academy grads to be the design team. One kid tried to find a way to work in the Prometheus’ separation to have the saucer section separate into two separate ships.” His eyes were rolled, and he tapped one of the Quantum Slipstream Prototype ships. “I’d have killed to have skilled members on my team like you did.”

“I’d have killed to had them not left floating around Mars for nearly two years,” Yoshi said softly, and Aeron winced.


Yoshi shrugged again, leaning back in his chair and crossing a leg. “You’re an awful long way from home, what brings you this far from the centre of everything?” Picking a cup of now-cold coffee, Yoshi took a sip and raised an eyebrow. Aeron nodded to the window, where the collection of starships on standby could be seen. “Ah, the Nelson, here to take her back, or take her for a test run?”

“Neither, I was going to ask if you could assemble a standby crew to take over the shakedown. With a bunch of new ships out the gate, we need to get our hands on as much of a test as we can. Someone with experience with the Quantum Slipstream would be preferred, give it a good thorough run through her paces before she gets her permanent crew.” Yoshi nodded along, looking at the available roster at the moment, before his eyes landed on a name.

Current ship status: Standby.

He slid the PaDD across towards his old friend, who picked it up and gave it a glance. He looked to Yoshi, then back to the PaDD. “You sure?”

Vesta is on standby for another month at least. They’ve made great work at cutting out the heat sink, and also at stripping back the damaged hull, but there is still a ton of work to be done. Repair teams are estimating it’ll be a while before she is ready for a proper voyage again. Plus, I have a station to get in order, and a list of Captain’s to call and harass. No reason for them to be stuck here waiting when they could be doing something productive. So I’ll assign Captain Darrow and his crew to perform the Shakedown.” There was a look of pause on Aeron’s face, and clearly he looked like he was going to object. A tension rose in the room, where Aeron debated whether it was a good idea to poke the bear, or to take the offer he was given.

“Very well Yoshi, thank you,” he finally managed. The man stood, and the pair exchanged a handshake. “I shouldn’t keep you too long, so unless there is anything else?” Yoshi shook his head, and Captain Klans nodded and left, leaving the room feeling empty. Was it the room, or was it the realization that with a position as a Flag Officer in charge of Fleet Deployments he now had to deal with the twists and turns that members around him had to play by. Was he now realizing that a great number of his long friendships would be greatly changed by the simple change in rank. The awkwardness that filled the space made him sigh.

“Computer, coffee, hot, black,” he said, as a new cup materialized on the desk replicator. He slowly took a sip, and looked around the large, mostly empty office.