XO Lieutenant Commander Vikram Baudin

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XO Lieutenant Commander Vikram Baudin

Postby Shawna F » Thu Jun 12, 2014 12:39 am

Stardate 11406.11

The aquarium in the admiral's office bubbled gently over the hard pounding of the ensign's heart. He had to fight back the urge to nervously--was he nervous, is that what that feeling was, or was it just anticipation, anxiety, paranoia that someone was going to come bursting through the door behind him--rub his palms on his pants. His arms rested firmly, instead, on the seat's rests, feet solid on the floor, and the view out the seventh floor of HQ showing it to be a sunny day with a line of clouds on the horizon. Staring ahead just over the admiral's shoulder was a fine neutral pose.

Things could all fall apart here if certain people didn't do their jobs. If certain connections ripped the rug out from under him. He'd been working toward this, and like hell he was going to let anything stop him from taking back his life. Too many years had gone by for him to slip up now. (And what would his mother say if he burnt out before he even hit 30?)

"You know I don't make a habit of this," Admiral Head started slowly with a bob of his head. Though the lines on the admiral's face clearly defined some age, it was also clear he didn't like the look of a full head of grey hair, having dyed it to keep the youthful red. It was a little distracting.

"I understand, sir."

"If it wasn't for the past circumstances, there'd be no reason for me to call an ensign here at all."

Vikram kept a flare of frustration under wraps. He didn't need to be pandered to. "And I do recognize that, sir."

Head didn't seem to notice. "Normally all of this would be done by communiques, through all the usual channels. I understand you've spent the past several years--" The admiral squinted at the screen for a moment, and Vikram held his breath. "--in shipyard operations, on McKinley Station, is that right?"

The breath eased out of him. No changes. Everything still in place. "Yes, sir; the past five, in fact."

"Yes, yes, and that was after your leave." Vikram said nothing, both because he'd rather not say anything on the subject ('leave' was a soft way to put it, and it felt patronizing, but he wouldn't fight semantics), and because it seemed to him that Admiral Head was simply going over the facts aloud instead of requiring actual verbal confirmation of everything that was clearly on the service record being reviewed. "You understand why we had to take a look at your request more closely."

The chair sure was starting to feel uncomfortable. He squared his jaw and looked the admiral in the eye when the aging man finally looked up at him. "Admiral, there is no need to walk on eggshells with me. I realize that, with all of us, we are special cases that need particular consideration after what happened. But you've run me through the tests, and I've had no major infractions noted in my record on my time in and around the station. If there is any reason you have to deny me a more active position on any ship, I will thank you to tell me upfront so I do not waste any of your valuable time, sir."

The admiral stared silently for long enough that Vikram began to think that he'd crossed a line, though his body language didn't back down. He stood by what he said, even if he was only being polite with the valuable time line.

"I, personally, have my reservations, Ensign Baudin. Some of you haven't adapted well to returning to active starships."

Still an ensign after all this time. It rankled him, but that was hardly the admiral's fault. He just hoped that soon enough he'd be able to show that he was ready for an official promotion, under official circumstances. That said, Vikram relaxed (as much as he ever could in front of an admiral) back into the chair some. It wasn't about him specifically. It was about the Kensington crew. Which was understandable, but it got very old sometimes. "Some of them weren't ready to go back. And some of them will never be ready. That's just how it is." It was cold to talk about his crew like that, but it had been years. He knew how to compartmentalize when it was necessary. "I am. I've been just fine on McKinley, and I'm ready to get on a ship and go. I am not going to let what happened nearly seven years ago dominate my entire life, sir, and if you'll allow it, I want to prove it myself."

The aquarium bubbled still, and Head leaned back into his seat, fingers tapping against one another. "I didn't say I objected, Ensign. I said I have my reservations. And I find them well-founded. But." He raised a finger to keep Vikram from objecting--which he wasn't going to do, so it must have just been out of habit. "I have reviewed your evaluations myself, noted your history, and if you say you're ready, then I have nothing to keep you grounded. If you're determined to get back on the bull, then who am I to say no? In fact..." Head grabbed a PADD and stood, Vikram shooting up in respect at the same time. "I have just the ship for you to dive headfirst to."

Vikram took the PADD when offered it, skimming the short contents. He looked up in honest surprise. "Sentinel, sir?"

"If you think you're ready."

The ensign saluted sharply. "Ready and willing. I wasn't expecting such an honour."

Head lightly saluted back, chuckling to himself. "I wasn't going to make it easy for you. I'll be eager to see reports from your CO on how you're doing."

There was a moment of hesitation, but Vikram nodded. "Yes, sir." It was meant well enough on the surface, but it sounded to him like Head was going to be spying on him. No, maybe that was too harsh a thought. Checking up on him. Make sure he didn't crack under pressure like some of the other Kensington crew had in the past. So long as the admiral didn't go far enough to plant someone on the ship to follow him around--

No. Not everyone was like that, not in Starfleet. He had to remember that, even as he kept his eyes opened and his wits about him. He'd have to prove the admiral's worries moot. But still, the newest ship of the fleet? It was sure to be doing some deep exploration, not border patrols. Excitement, adventure, probably important diplomatic missions as well, the sort of things he'd joined the fleet for in the first place.

"Welcome back to the big leagues, Mister Baudin. Dismissed."

Vikram snapped to another salute and hastily marched himself out of Head's office. And didn't stop until he was outside. The air was starting to smell of rain from the clouds slowly rolling in. Good. Let it rain. It'd be just one more symbol of his fresh start. Even if he still had friends in high enough places to keep some secrets, it meant he was free to be who and what he always meant to be.

His mother wouldn't be proud of everything he'd done, but she'd be proud of this. Maybe in a few days he'd drop the family a line. Reopen the rocky lines of communication. He wouldn't be able to give an adequate explanation for everything, but enough. It would have to be enough. This would have to be enough.
Last edited by Shawna F on Tue Jul 14, 2015 12:27 am, edited 2 times in total.
CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek - USS Bremen NCC-12428
XO LtCmdr Vikram Baudin - USS Sentinel NCC-79088 / S.T.A.R. Taskforce Sigma

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Re: OPS Ensign Vikram Baudin

Postby James Greenman » Thu Jun 12, 2014 4:41 am

Absolutely awesome first log, Shawna! I'm looking forward to seeing Mistee Baudin on the Sentinel. :)
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Re: OPS Ensign Vikram Baudin

Postby Einar S » Thu Jun 12, 2014 11:58 am

Very interesting, even more so after reading his bio. Why cant I just join the Sentinel already?
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Re: OPS Ensign Vikram Baudin

Postby James Greenman » Thu Jun 12, 2014 6:08 pm

Einar S wrote:Very interesting, even more so after reading his bio. Why cant I just join the Sentinel already?


I don't know, Einar, why can't you? :colbert:
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Re: OPS Ensign Vikram Baudin

Postby Shawna F » Thu Jun 12, 2014 6:18 pm

Eeeexcellent, that's just the kind of reaction I was hoping for. :frogcool:
CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek - USS Bremen NCC-12428
XO LtCmdr Vikram Baudin - USS Sentinel NCC-79088 / S.T.A.R. Taskforce Sigma

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IT'S BEEN A LONG ROAD

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Re: OPS Ensign Vikram Baudin

Postby Shawna F » Sat Jun 28, 2014 8:19 pm

Stardate 11406.23

Maybe it wasn't a trap.

The thought was irritating and almost alien to Vikram as he tapped a few more communications controls to try another way around all the static and audio debris. The distortions surrounding the moon weren't making this an easy task, but he knew he could punch through it with a little time and effort. He shook his head to himself as he rapidly cycled through a series of frequencies, none of them allowing him yet to make a connection with the trio on the surface.

A year ago, he probably would've laughed in the face of anyone who dared to question his instincts when it came to traps. But there were plenty of other unpleasant possibilities. Gravitational distortions might have caused some damage, killed the remaining crew. Disabled the ship. Perhaps some form of temporal anomaly? They hadn't detected any... It just wasn't necessarily a trap set for anyone. If they could pull the powered down ship away and give her a thorough checking, that might answer a good number of questions.

So could talking to the beings on the surface. He was itching to get the ship out and away, but curious enough to want to stay and poke around. If they could make their way around the distortions, a small tactical team could slip on down to the surface to figure out what was going on for themselves, but the vectors might be tricky (not for him, not enough to keep him from trying), and it was a risk the captain probably wouldn't take on this maiden voyage. Maybe those people on the surface weren't even leftover crew who escaped whatever had been wrong with the ship (apparently not a containment breach). Talking to them would give them away, but it would also give everyone more information to work with.

The kind of thing he was supposed to be out here to do. Follow orders, not give them. With a whole crew surrounding him. He'd prove to Admiral Head that he could keep himself together, that this was the right posting for him. One day at a time. And today, this minute, was about cracking through the interference.

His spine straightened more than it already had been when he noticed a clearing. They should be able to shoot a message down and receive one in return. "Sir," he started calmly, "I believe we can now say hello."
CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek - USS Bremen NCC-12428
XO LtCmdr Vikram Baudin - USS Sentinel NCC-79088 / S.T.A.R. Taskforce Sigma

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Re: OPS Ensign Vikram Baudin

Postby Shawna F » Sun Jul 06, 2014 4:00 pm

Stardate 11406.30

He was able to put his shuttle piloting skills to good use--much earlier than he'd anticipated. Vikram hadn't had the luxury of being in the hotseat of one of the Type 11s in a while, but he slid into the situation with ease and comfort. Any nerves about the oddity of the situation would just have to be ignored (and filed away neatly somewhere in the background of his mind), and he would just have to trust the transporters to filter out any potential bacterium or virus or whatever else the Maubry crew might have picked up on that moon or on their ship. (Thank god for EV suits.)

The trio seemed...fine. Distraught at the assumption that the rest of their crew was dead, certainly, but nothing seemed wrong with them. Nothing pinged his vaguely paranoid sixth sense. Was this just a case of something strange and deadly happening to the ship, and the trio were just lucky enough to have made it out alive? Victims of whatever they were caught up in?

He'd been getting better at smoothing out the ride, gravitational distortions be damned. Maybe, in some ways, that's all it was. The Maubry got caught in the distortions, something went wrong, and something else went wrong in the scramble to transport away. But what was that distant Thing That Went Wrong? So long as Sentinel kept her distance, he wasn't worried about the shiny new ship succumbing to the same fate. They'd just have to find out what they could when they got to the powered down ship hanging listlessly in orbit.
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XO LtCmdr Vikram Baudin - USS Sentinel NCC-79088 / S.T.A.R. Taskforce Sigma

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Re: OPS Ensign Vikram Baudin

Postby James Greenman » Sun Jul 06, 2014 4:03 pm

Another great log, Shawna. You're our shining star on the forums. :toot:
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Re: OPS Ensign Vikram Baudin

Postby Shawna F » Fri Jul 11, 2014 6:46 pm

Stardate 11407.07

The comm crackled again, first a barely-there string of static under Yeremenko's voice, then as a flash of noise after the captain's voice faded away. Another voice took his place. Or rather, it tried to. Distant and like a whisper, just a syllable, just a letter, the start of a sentence, of a word. On the edge of hearing. A huff of air before being cut off. Just a "h" sound.

It was unsettling. Bad enough that with power low, it still seemed like an abandoned ghost ship, and then D'Mera's mysterious message that wasn't as scratched into the console surface as she had thought it was. He could only assume the voice was trying to tell him the same thing it did to her--help.

Missing crew, a possible transporter accident, seemingly supernatural happenings right out of an old horror movie? It was growing increasingly clear to Vikram what was going on here, and it would probably take sh'Tolar and some transporter engineers to undo whatever damage was caused. "We'll get you out," he said, possibly only to himself, into nothingness, but hopefully to some entity on the other end.

When the all-clear was given for life support, he hesitated to take his helmet off, despite all assurances that the scrubbers had cleared the radiation from the air. Sure, if it was safe, it'd be cumbersome and silly to leave his helmet and EV suit on the entire trip. But he'd let the away team take their risks first. If nothing happened to them, if the air was truly fine? Then he'd be more than happy to avail himself of the suit. Until they became absolutely certain what happened, though, it wasn't a risk he wanted to take himself. If that got him made fun of, then they'd see who was laughing when he was the only one to not come down with some ravaging disease off the derelict ship and no. He couldn't let his imagination run off in that direction. He had to focus. And they had to start looking.
CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek - USS Bremen NCC-12428
XO LtCmdr Vikram Baudin - USS Sentinel NCC-79088 / S.T.A.R. Taskforce Sigma

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Re: OPS Ensign Vikram Baudin

Postby Shawna F » Sun Jul 20, 2014 4:07 pm

Stardate 11407.14

In some ways, it was worse than the simple(?) matter of fiddling with the damn transporters and retrieving each of the missing crew. He went over the logs himself, triple checking sh'Tolar's findings. They weren't just ghosts in the machine; they were part of its coding, the very DNA of the beast. It meant they were sentient programs, lines of code, subroutines that could think for themselves. Flicker the lights. Tap into the comms. Slam the doors.

And, apparently, keep a core breach from taking out the entire ship by doing what the crew had been unable to do in their scramble to evacuate, with physical bodies.

This told Vikram two things. One: with all of the recorded transporter incidents that could be dragged up and reviewed, he had no doubts that they would be able to find some way of reconstituting the not-so-missing crew without having to guess everything from scratch. (One-point-five: even if they had to start from scratch, he still had confidence in getting at least some of them out. Perhaps not all of them, perhaps not even without incident, but good enough.) Two: they were the ones keeping the ship from exploding into a radioactive, fiery ball that would not only vaporize all of them, but endanger Sentinel as well.

What happens, then, if they get removed? Can they create their own subroutines to shunt into place and hope a fraction of a second isn't enough to cause everything to go haywire around them?

They had to try, of course, and there was every possibility that a complete and full rescue could happen. He'd try his hardest. He just had to wonder if the captain knew when to call off a lost cause if it ended up going that way. Vikram hoped that they'd never have to find out.
CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek - USS Bremen NCC-12428
XO LtCmdr Vikram Baudin - USS Sentinel NCC-79088 / S.T.A.R. Taskforce Sigma

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