Welcome on board
Shore Leave: Welcome to Drozana
Location: The Raven's Claw
Raven was smiling contently as she sat in the Claw's mess hall. She had just finished a quick breakfast, and was now waiting for their new recruit, Taryn, to move her shuttle into the old warbird's shuttle bay, which had been cleared over night. Gedak had taken the opportunity to sell off some of the junk that they had kept stored in there - simultaneously decluttering the ship and filling up their coffers.
Finally, she got up. Despite the state she was in at the end of the previous night, Centurion Rogers had insisted she be there to make sure the new arrival was not going to bring anything untowards onto the ship, and, as executive officer, Kaiae was going to be there as well. Raven quickly contacted the two to remind her to meet her at the shuttle bay, and made her way there.
Taryn was sat at the controls of her shuttle - around a hundred metres from her intended destination - waiting patiently for the shuttlebay doors to open. The craft contained her personal belongings which included her arsenal of weaponry which she'd collected during her time as a mercenary. It wasn't significant but it certainly gave her plenty of choice when it came to selecting the right weapon for its intended application.
"I wonder if they've remembered I'm coming aboard today or they're still trying to work out how to open a set of shuttlebay doors" Taryn thought.
Ash was face down on the floor of her quarters, still in the clothes she wore the previous day, with little to no recollection of how she got there or what happened after she thinks she may have stolen someone's dinner. Raven's reminder to meet in the shuttlebay made her grumble. How the hell is she so damn perky this morning? She rolled over onto her back and was hit with a wave of dizziness. Her joints are stiff from lying on the floor all night as she struggled to stand. "Damn Romulan Ale... it should be illegal..." she muttered to herself as she stumbled into the shower. She opted for the water option, rather than the sonic shower, hoping it would help the pounding in her head. It did not.
She checked the time and groaned. "I'm too old for this...." she said to herself as she dug through her first aid kit, injecting herself with a hypospray, which hopefully will make her functional enough to make a halfway decent first impression. She put on some fresh clothes and affixed her new rank onto it, shaking her head, as it was the how she ended up in her current state. Ash looked in the mirror and despite her best efforts, she looked like hell. She's been through worse... it can always be worse. She replicated a glass of water and chugged it. The thought of eating made her want to throw up, but she needed food in her stomach. She opted for a quick breakfast ration, something that, in the worst case, may taste the same coming up as it did going down. Not that it really mattered anyways, the replicators still are pretty awful.
She was slowly starting to better but definitely was not 100%. Ash checked her sidearm and the knife in her boot... which still had pieces of poultry on it. Great. She ran her hand through her hair one more time as she gave up on trying to make herself not look like someone that just escaped from the brig. She replicated herself a mug of coffee and proceeded out the door and towards the shuttle bay. As she walked through the corridors, she noticed people giving her a wide berth. Ash smirked, despite feeling like crap, her perpetual scowl still has it's intended effect.
She got to the shuttle bay and saw that Raven was already standing there, looking no worse for wear. Either that woman is the best damn actor in the world or she is actually a machine. Ash nodded, raised her coffee mug at Raven, and growled, "Good morning."
Raven could not help but laugh at Rogers' obvious misery. "Feeling a bit rough this morning, Centurion? You know, one thing about Orions that not many people know, is that they are entirely immune to hangovers. A trait I inherited from my mother." She smirked, as if to rub it in even further.
"Anyway. Our new arrival is scheduled to dock in about five minutes. I sure hope the shuttle bay doors still work."
Ash took a sip of her coffee as she glared at Raven, "Rough is an understatement. I'm not sure if I want to thank you or toss you out the shuttle bay doors to verify they work.... ma'am." She attempted to smile, but it looked more like she was in severe gastrointestinal distress. "This Taryn character better not be trouble. I am not in the mood to deal with any kind of shenanigans."
"I am sure things will be fine, Ash, don't worry," replied Raven, her smirk growing into a grin. Nodding to herself, she went over to the control console, and input the commands to open the bay doors. Nothing happened.
She cursed under her breath and bashed the console with her fist. Suddenly, the hangar doors began to open. "Huh," Raven remarked. "That's the first time that's ever actually worked."
"....As opposed to...?" Kaiae's voice came from behind as she joined them; sounding a touch incredulous at Raven's statement of surprise at equipment working as intended.
"The hitting the console, Subcommander. Not the doors themselves. And good morning."
As the bay doors finally reached the fully open position, Raven engaged the docking procedure. Time to welcome their newest crew member.
After watching the doors take what felt like a year to open Taryn piloted her craft into the now empty shuttlebay - with the wingtips of her craft folding as she began the landing sequence. Once the shuttle had landed and been powered down safely the synthetic human secured her vessel before exiting via the hatch on the starboard side.
Taryn could see that three women were waiting for her. One of whom was Raven - but unsurprisingly she didn't recognise the other two. With a satchel over her shoulder Taryn then waited to be introduced to her new colleagues.
Ash watched the new arrival disembark her vessel, noting her skill landing the vessel and how long it took for her to exit the ship after she landed. Efficient. She stood at Raven's side, letting her commander take the lead in introductions as she continued to observe the newcomer.
Raven walked up to Taryn as she came on board. "Welcome on board the Raven's Claw", she said, smiling. "This is my executive officer, Subcommander Kaiae t'Lien, and over there you have our chief of security, Centurion Ash Rogers."
Kaiae was rather less effusive than Raven, simply providing a brisk nod as she was introduced.
Following the introductions, Raven pulled a little box out of her pocket. "As you can see, we all wear Romulan rank insignia, as part of our operation with the Romulans. You will be wearing the rank of Lieutenant, to match your place within the chain of command." With a smile, she opened the box, revealing two silver pips. "Please attach these to your shirt, ideally your collar or chest. We will not expect you to wear any uniform beyond this."
Seeing Raven and Kaiae greet Taryn with a friendly demeanor, Ash tried to make herself smile, likely very unsuccessfully, damn Romulan Ale.... Sorry Taryn, you're just going to get glared at.
"Pleasure. Where are my quarters?" Taryn asked.
Ash furrowed her brow subtly, maintaining what she hopes was a poker face. Efficient was an understatement. She looked over at Raven with a look that said, I can't believe I dragged myself out of my quarters for this. "I can escort you there, Lieutenant."
After lazily attaching the rank insignia to the collar of her shirt Taryn pointed towards what she assumed was the door which would take them out of the cargo bay. She was hoping for something a bit more modern than the Raven's Claw but a job was a job.
"Please do" Taryn responded.
Kaiae kept a perfectly level expression, but very much wanted to raise an eyebrow high at this last remark: Aboard the typical warbird, a lieutenant making that remark to a commander and a centurion would've gotten themselves slapped across the face, at best. Even aboard the Federation ship, she was fairly certain it would not be taken without consequence, generally.
"If you have any further questions, do not hesitate to ask. My door is always open. In part because I'm still waiting to get the lock fixed." Raven chuckled. "Welcome on board, Lieutenant. I' sure Rogers will give you the full tour."
Ash nodded as she walked behind Taryn. She looked back at Raven and Kaiae with a look of perplexed confusion before catching up to the new arrival.
"So, what's your story? she asked the Lieutenant.
Taryn replied. "Nothing exciting. I join a ship and stay until I either get bored or the owner decides to stop paying me. I've been doing that for a few years and it seems to have done a good job of keeping me alive"
"Can't blame you. I usually work alone, this is my first crew in a while," Ash opened up, hoping to learn more about Taryn. If she's going to work together with the new Tactical officer, she should at least try to get to know her and what her motivations are. She took another sip of her now lukewarm coffee, "So why the Raven's Claw?"
Taryn walked along with her haversack on her back. Excluding her weapons collection the synthetic human didn't have many belongings - and therefore what she did have easily fitted into her haversack.
"The wages are good and there's somewhere to park my shuttle. It might be an old bucket of shit but the positives outweigh the negatives. What about you?" Taryn responded.
Ash almost gagged on her coffee trying not to laugh, "I'm sure our engineer would love to hear her ship being called an 'old bucket of shit.' And definitely let Raven heard you call it that." Ash then lowered her voice, "Granted... you're not wrong. The replicators are questionable and we're pretty much flying on hopes and prayers. But so far, so good. It's a good crew holding it together." Her stomach gurgles slightly at the memory of the bonding experience with her, Raven, and Hatham the night before.
"The wages are definitely good though," tilting her mug towards Taryn. "Like I said, I worked alone for a while. Raven recruited me after she saw me in a bar fight. I've stuck around ever since. Before that, I was Starfleet... among other things. And no, I'm not one of those idealistic former Starfleet that all quit in protest when Picard did. I have my own reasons for being out here... and a skill set that's in demand," Ash smirked. "So your last crew, did you get bored or did they stop paying you?"
Taryn responded. "They decided to stop paying me so I left a nice surprise for them in their engine room. Don't worry - they'll be far, far away from anyone when they have to worry about it. Which way from here?"
Ash stopped in her tracks, "Excuse me? A 'nice surprise'?" Gedak has been pretty reliable with their pay, but Taryn's nonchalant attitude raised all sorts of alarm bells in Ash's mind. Ash is equally as capable of doing what Taryn is alluding to, which justifies her paranoia over the newbie. "I hate surprises, Lieutenant."
"It's not usually in my nature to leave everyone who pisses me off a surprise in their engine room - but this particular bunch of muppets have been asking for it for a while. In other circumstances I just take what I'm owed and fly off into the sunset" Taryn said.
Ash narrowed her eyes at Taryn before begrudgingly nodding, "Guess we'll have to not piss you off. You'll find that I, too, am not very forgiving of transgressions against me. It's something Gedak is also very well aware of, so I hope we all have an understanding."
Taryn nodded. "I'm sure. And one other thing - if anyone even breathes on my shuttle without my permission then I hope Quartermaster Pumpkin Head offers sick pay. The last person to do that ended up with a very sore head and a pair of broken legs"
"His name is Gedak," Ash can feel herself being on edge around Taryn. She knows the kind of mercenary that Taryn is. No loyalty beyond the paycheck. No trust. She almost chuckles internally. Throughout her career in Starfleet, once her affiliation with Section 31 was made public, those around her would always throw the word 'trust' out there. That they couldn't 'trust' Ash's loyalties. Fools. They don't know people like Taryn. And to be honest, know one really knows people like Taryn. They do their jobs, get paid, and that's that. The fact that some people thought Ash was like that was actually irritating. For all of the sacrifices that she's made... everything she's endured... She shook those thoughts out of her head and downed the rest of her now cold coffee, "And I'll make sure no one breathes on your shuttle."
She then took a step closer to Taryn, "And you do realize that I'm in charge of security on this ship... if you give anyone a sore head and a pair of broken legs without my clearing it with me first... I will be very upset. And no one wants to see me... upset."
Taryn sighed. "Yada yada. What you should know about me is that I don't take kindly to people touching or using my things unless I tell them they're allowed to. So if it's all the same to you when it comes to my shuttle then I will deal with it and let you know afterwards. And believe me - I'm not frightened of anyone being upset...in fact...you sound like you belong in Starfleet"
Ash knows Taryn is baiting her... so she laughs, "You're probably the only person in the universe that thinks that. If I kept in touch with anyone from back then, I'm sure they'll get a kick out of that." She walks past Taryn and turns right, "I wouldn't be earning my pay if I didn't get to know everyone joining our crew. Like I said, the pay is good, I'd like to keep earning it. Your quarters are this way."
Taryn followed Ash along the corridor whilst immersing herself in thought. The old freighter did seem like a good opportunity - although so far she'd yet to find what she always looked for amongst the crews she'd worked alongside in the past. In fact that had alluded Taryn for some time. Taryn then began to hum a tune to herself - one that she'd heard a while ago but hadn't yet found out what the song was called.
As Ash was walking, she noticed that Taryn was humming.
It was faint enough for her to know she was humming a melody, but not loud enough for her to identify what the tune was. She can't decide if Taryn is humming in an attempt to annoy her or if she just... hums. Despite the conversation not really being free-flowing, Ash has learned what she needed to know about the new officer and can be ready for whatever she throws at her. "We're here," Ash said, stopping in front of a set of doors.
Taryn opened the doors to her quarters - not responding until they'd started closing behind her again.
"Great. See you later" Taryn replied.