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Turn Me Loose

Posted on Sun Jul 2nd, 2023 @ 4:10pm by Captain Aven LaCroix & Ensign Ethan O'Donnaghue

1,502 words; about a 8 minute read

Mission: Mission 1: House of The Dying Sun
Location: USS Eclipse | Deck 01 | Captain's Ready Room

With the crew of the USS Eclipse summoned to report to the moored starship, Captain Aven LaCroix waited in his Ready Room to meet with Ensign O'Donnaghue, a young helmsmen that would be taking over for Lieutenant Luna Strong, the woman he had only briefly encountered on the starbase amidst the commotion of the explosion. He stood by the observation area of his Ready Room looking out at the stars, the starbase, and the asteroid field as he awaited the ensign's arrival. He had only skimmed their personnel file, and though young, O'Donnaghue appeared to be more than a capable officer, he was a skillful flight control officer and would make a fine addition to the USS Eclipse.

Ensign Ethan James O'Donnaghue had just set up his room aboard the eclipse living out of a bag on the starbase was a little less glam, but this was starfleet, and living out of a holdall bag was par for the course. Everything was now in its place, or at least had a place for now, on his night stand lay his vintage antique first edition of sun tzu's the art of war, every single O'Donnaghue up on graduation of the academy was gifted a vintage first edition of the art of war, this very copy was his fathers and it had traveled a long old way from rings of Saturn to the heavenly skies of betazoid.

Thankfully the young ensign had cleared his room and squared away his belongings with an hour to spare before meeting captain Aven LaCroix. The eclipse was his first assignment and she was most defiantly a looker, nova classes might be small but they were mighty, that is what a lot of his instructors at starfleet academy had said about him "Small but mighty and always willing to make the brave steps into the unknown" Was what his form Tutor Elena Lightwood had said in his final supervision on his final class assignment.

He placed his duffle bag down on his chair and picked up his duty padd and exited his room, Walking the halls of the eclipse so many people waved and smiled at him as he made his way towards the turbo lift. Stepping into the turbo lift "Computer take me to Deck One Captains Ready Room" he spoke in his Irish drawl, He tapped his foot as he waited for the whooshing of the turbo lift to stop at the correct deck level.

The whooshing of the turbo lift stopped and he exited the lift straight onto Deck One, the hustle and bustle of deck one was palpable. He made a B-line straight towards the captains ready room, Nervously taping his foot as he clutched his duty padd tight in his right arm across his chest, Emotions and nerves rode him like a bullet train as his finger hovered over the door chime. Pressing it once he waited for the door to open.

"Enter," croaked the dry raspy voice of the elder Captain. His voice carried enough, just enough. He missed the days where he didn't need to drink water as often or suck on a lozenge, but age did things to the body and made everything the slightest more challenging.

He stood from his chair and greeted his young arrival. "Ensign O'Donnaghue," he said warmly looking at the silhouette of the young man, practically a boy compared to Aven. "Come now, have a seat. Ethan was it?"

Ethan warmley smiled ashe entered the room "Thats correct sir" as he waited for a little before taking a seat, Taking in the room it was most defiantly a fantastic ready room "Thank you captain" he said taking a seat on one o the plush chairs to his left "Ethan is just fine" he said making himself comfortable dancing his feet as he did so.

Aven gestured towards a chair for the ensign to take as Aven himself settled back into his own. "Your first assignment fresh out of Starfleet Academy, Ethan. That's a profound jump. We're a small starship, but I can only imagine the pressure you are feeling on your shoulders. You were not but a Cadet not too long ago, stepping aboard an ensign and serving as our Chief Flight Controller."

Ethan did have a good Academy record, but normally a posting like the Eclipse would have gone to someone with a few more years of experience underneath them. "What are your goals and aspirations?"

Ethan smiled as took his seat "I suppose I've always found pressure somewhat of driving force captain" He spoke quite candidly about it "My father always told me that Pressure only gives births diamonds when used at the right degrees of force" He spoke with a very strong Irish accent "Flying is all iv ever wanted to do captain, its what my heart sings for and as you can see from my transcripts I'm not to shabby at it" he said with a little confidence to his voice.

"Well my goals and Aspirations I one day want to make command, that has been my dream for the longest time this is my first step towards that and I intend to serve as gallantly and respectfully as I can captain."

He smiled at Ethan's response. "You sound very passionate about piloting a starship and operating flight controls, and yet eying my chair?" Aven chuckled dryly.

"Not my chair exactly per se," he noted. "Though I must say that I don't get to pilot things very often myself, Ethan. You are on a great track for command, but one day you'll find yourself in the Captain's chair."

Ethan smiled and laughed a little nervously "Ive always been passionate about piloting my dad was a medical officer and always encouraged me to follow my dreams to the stars" he said as he wiggled in his chair "One day maybe ill sit in the captains chair right now though it is my job to make sure the eclipse flys safe and true" he said with a slight wink.

Aven nodded at the young man's response. "We would certainly appreciate you keeping the Eclipse among the stars rather than beneath them, and the ship as safe as possible. Both Security and Tactical like the starship relatively unscathed" Captain LaCroix stated. "The problem is I do not want you wasting your most tentative and formative career years inputting courses and engaging in evasive maneuvers."

Ethan sat there contaminating the captains words. He laughed at the points he should have but there was a part of him knew he laughed out of nerves. He looked at the captain "You don't want me to waste my formative Career years piloting?" He was both puzzled and intrigued.

"Correct," replied Captain LaCroix. "You need experience and exposed to different challenges and obstacles. Your priority focus will be your helm duties, but I refuse to box you in for several years being passed along starship to starship on flight controls. You'll be a rounded bridge officer. I will ensure that."

Ethan smiled "So basically you want me to be apart of every operation on this ship?" he said with a wide smile, this is what he wanted from his assignment to be apart of every single operation of a starship, he wanted to be apart of this ship for as long as it could take "I want to learn from you captain to be apart of how this ship runs and how you captain I want you to walk me through that and of course being on away teams is something I would love"

Captain LaCroix chuckled. "I would not say every operation of the ship. I suspect Doctor Karri would not be so thrilled if I had you down in Sickbay scrubbed up for surgery" said the Commanding Officer. "Though as far as starship operations, yes. I don't expect you to master everything, but a good starship commander knows their strengths and weaknesses, knows to rely on their crew's expertise, but also has enough rudimentary knowledge of their starship to sense when something is not proper."

EJ laughed as he moved to the edge of his seat "Ok so the operations of the starship not every department got it" He laughed "Well my father was chief medical officer all of is career so I know a few things not nearly as much as Cheif Medical officer but I can get by" He smiled as he looked around "So when is the next away mission captain?"

"Ideally on the Klingon homeworld when we arrive there" answered Aven. "Though you never know what may pop up along the way."

An alert notified him that he had another appointment soon. "Ensign, it has been a pleasure. We'll resume this certainly. If you'll excuse me, I have another appointment scheduled."

Captain LaCroix saw a lot of potential in the young ensign. In dome ways, brief glimpses of himself. That last thing he wanted was Ettan to end up stuck career wise.


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