As Emma and T’Keterk followed the captain, Emma couldn’t help but recall the discussion she had shared with T’Keterk after their initial briefing as they entered the Delta Quadrant. When she heard she had been assigned to the Corax to offer humanitarian aid, she had been both relieved and a little disappointed.
Exiting the Conference Room, Emma and T’Keterk solemnly made there way to the crew lounge. Much like the rest of the ship, function over form was the order of the day. The lounge, although small and spartan, was a relatively comfortable spot to have some quiet time or a small drink or meal after the end of the shift. Taking a seat, she placed her chin in her hand and stared out the window. The low light on the ship distorting her reflection. Almost unrecognizable in her minds eye.
Growing up she had her eyes set on joining Starfleet and travelling the galaxy, meeting new species, protecting the territories of the federation and having a little fun on the way. Although a less pressure situation of assisting federation member worlds, patrols, and diplomatic functions was almost ideal while Emma completed her first tour of duty. It didn’t stop her feeling conflicted nonetheless.
“May I get you something, Ensign.” T’Keterk asked, focusing her attention back to the unfolding situation at hand.
“Hmmm? Oh?” Emma replied. “I think a coffee or raktajino if you’re offering”.
T’Keterk nodded and turned his attention to the sole replicator in the room. “Would you like some company, Ensign?”
“Please do.” Emma smiled motioning to the seat across the table from her as T’Keterk bought a steaming mug of Raktajino and a Vulcan Spice Tea. “And its Emma.” she continued. “We are amongst friends of course and we have some time before we depart.”
T’Keterk replied with a slight nod to the head. Taking a sip of the mug in front of him, he regarded his colleague in front of him. “Are you well, Emma?”
“Physically? Yes.” Emma mused. “But concerned with the orders from Command.”
“I may share some of those concerns as well.” T’Keterk replied. “I have yet to take a cursory look through the details as yet, but if you are agreeable, I thought we might review this together.”
Emma nodded as she savored the drink in front of her.
The next few hours passed in companiable silence as they worked through the files the Captain had provided.
“I may have a new concern.” T’Keterk broke the silence. “The Captain was not exaggerating about the effects Blood Dilithium have on telepaths, and this Devore is also a troubling matter”
Emma knew Vulcan’s had telepathic abilities and to a lesser extent so did the Trill. “Will you be able to maintain control T’Keterk?”
“I am unsure.” T’Keterk replied. “We know next to nothing about the effects these crystals, and know nothing about any effective counters to the effects.”
“And the Captain?” Emma asked further. “As a Trill he will have some telepathic abilities.”
T’Keterk thought for a moment. “Although the symbiont does exhibit telepathic abilities, I believe these are utilized through electrical impulses opposed to affecting the mind, but the observation is appreciated”
That took a load off Emma’s mind, but she was still concerned for her new friend.
“However.” T’Keterk carried on. “We must be mindful for any negative effects, whether this be a degradation in the health of the symbiont, or the re-emergence of a previous host.” Emma nodded, nothing like a crash course in trill biology. “I do have a request of you in your official capacity, Ensign.” T’Keterk stressed.
“Go on?” Emma replied, not liking where this was going. “As a Starfleet Officer, I want your assurances that if I become a threat to the completion of this mission or the safety of anyone involved in this mission, that you remove the threat. ”T’Keterk continued.
“I don’t know how in control of my abilities or emotions I will be should we encounter any Blood Dilithium, and I am asking you for help, and if a phaser is needed, so be it.” T’Keterk finished, a hint of a challenge to his tone.
Mulling it over, Emma nodded. “I’ll keep my word, but the phaser is a last resort, Lieutenant. A Last Resort.”
“Thank you, Ensign. I will broach this topic with the captain in due course.” T’Keterk stated before focusing on the files spread in front of them.
Entering the conference room, Emma and T’Keterk noticed the Captain already waiting for them. Taking their seats to face Captain Suin, they waited for him to begin.