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Part of Starbase Bravo: 2401: Mission 1

Ready To Serve

U.S.S. Iowa, en route to Starbase Bravo
January 2401
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Ethan shifted himself in his seat slightly, taking another sip of his blue Andorian drink. He was seated at a table in the observation lounge of the U.S.S. Iowa, an Excelsior II-class starship that was ferrying new crew rotation to Starbase Bravo. The station was Ethan’s first official assignment as a Starfleet officer, having just graduated the academy. He was extremely eager to get his career started and begin his adventures in space. 

Though he was initially assigned to a station, which is usually less exciting that a starship posting, Ethan didn’t let that mindset disrupt his determination to make the most of it. He was now an Ensign and living his dream, and he was absolutely going to make the most of it. Having been assigned as an engineering officer aboard the station, he was looking forward to the duty assignments and impressing his superior officers. He picked up his drink again as he put his feet up on the small coffee table, sipping the liquid as he continued to watch the stars go by at warp speed. 

“Kinda surreal, isn’t it? Just a few more hours and we’ll be on our first assignment! I can’t wait to see what sickbay looks like. It’s gotta be bigger than the Academy’s, right?” The speaker was a short but attractive young Orion woman with olive-colored skin, who seemed to have simply appeared out of thin air behind his chair. Well, either that or Ethan had simply been so focused on his drink that he hadn’t even heard her approach. She was out of uniform, dressed in a dark red t-shirt and jeans, slender fingers daintily gripping the back of his seat. “Sorry to scare you. I thought it might be a bit more fun to say hi this way”. The young Orion giggled. “The name’s Kianaa. What’s yours?” 

Ethan jumped slightly and let out a short ‘ooo’ sound when he heard the voice directly behind him, almost spilling his drink in his lap. He immediately smiled at how jumpy he had been, laughing slightly before saying, “Definitely more fun this way.” He placed his drink down on the table as he studied her face. Ethan knew of her species, or rather the famous legends of her species, but he had not seen her before, neither at the academy nor here on the Iowa. 

“I’m so looking forward to this new posting, though I suppose every newly graduated Starfleet officer looks forward to beginning their careers.” He extended his hand and continued, “The name is Ethan, I’ll be one of the many new engineering officers for Starbase Bravo. And judging by how excited you are about how big the station’s sickbay will be, I’m going to assume you’re in medical?” He smiled slightly as he leaned back in his chair, bringing one hand to his chin to rest his head. 

“Well, hi, Ethan. I guess we’ll be working together from now on! Well, in a sense, I suppose. Did you know engineers have the highest workplace accident rate out of any Starfleet ship department?” Kianaa quipped before smiling and giving him a reassuring pat on the arm. “Of course, I trust that you know very well how to keep yourself safe on duty. I’m a nurse, you see, and I’ve seen a few too many engineering cadets come through the Academy sickbay. Burns, bruises, scrapes, cuts and one crushed toe. Don’t worry. That guy is fine.” The Orion smiled and sat down in front of him, crossing one leg over the other. “But hey, the gloom and doom isn’t what we wanna talk about, is it! Why engineering of all things. Doesn’t standing round a buzzing warp core all day get boring eventually?”

Ethan smiled as she spoke, appreciating the enthusiasm she had in her voice for her new role. More so than appreciation, he recognized that same tone in the way he talked about his new posting on Starbase Bravo. He let her finish before replying, “Actually, I didn’t know that, but I would have definitely guessed that engineering is probably one of the most hazardous jobs.” He smiled slightly as she went on about her past experiences, taking another sip of his blue andorian drink, “Well, I’m so very glad that I’ll have you there to patch me up if things get out of control in engineering. You never know what may happen!” 

As Kianaa posed her next question, he pondered it carefully before giving her an answer, “You know, I always thought that myself before joining the academy. I never anticipated I would be joining the engineering department, and if you would have asked be back then I for sure would have said there is no chance of that ever happening.” He looked away towards the window, gazing out at the stars, “But I did end up taking an engineering course to see how interested I might be with the subject, and wouldn’t you know it, I fell in love with it. For some reason, it just came so naturally to me, and I really underestimated how much I would enjoy it.”

He looked back at her before continuing, “Now, I suppose I should ask you the same question: why medical? What drove you to that decision?” He put his drink down and then leaned back into his chair, preparing for her answer, “I’m not sure I’d be able to do it, working to fix broken technology is one thing, but working to save a life of a living being? And what if you need to provide medical assistance to someone and you’ve never encountered their species before? That’s a huge responsibility.”

But before she had a chance to speak, an announcement came over the speakers informing them they had arrived at Starbase Bravo. Ethan put his drink down and stood up, “Well, I wish we had more time to chat, but it looks like we’re here. I’ve got to head to my quarters and grab my things, good luck in your assignment! Maybe we can get together in the future!” He smiled at her before departing, excited for what new adventures await on their first assignments.