Posted on Thu Feb 28th, 2019 @ 12:36am by Commodore Peter Gardner & Captain Melifa Thrall

Mission: And Then They Came
Location: Raeyan Transit Corridor
Timeline: MD 1

“Good Morning, Captain. Permission to come aboard?“ Admiral Logan Atticus asked warmly as he offered his hand to Peter. Ever the traditionalist Peter thought to himself. He had known the Admiral a long time, whilst he had served as Task Force 38’s Commanding Officer.

Peter smiled in return, taking the hand and shaking it. The woman next to him, Vice Admiral Angharad Milok, Peter’s mentor nodded in greeting. “Permission granted. “ Peter replied, completing the old maritime ritual. “Welcome aboard the Excelsior, Admirals.”

They both stepped down as Peter took Admiral Atticus’s hand. “It’s good to see you again, Admiral,” Peter said as he shook the other man's hand.

“Admiral Janeway - “ Atticus began but was cut off by Milok who simply said, “ sends her apologies.” Milok finished for him, flashing one of her knowing smiles, to which Peter thought there was some joke being shared between the two. Peter nodded. But it was still odd. Admiral Janeway had a vested interest in this, considering hers and voyagers history in the Delta Quadrant.

“What’s on the agenda?” Atticus asked quickly changing the subject but returning Milok’s conspirators look. Peter smiled, he had been looking forward to the inspection by the Admirals and made meticulous plans for the event.

“To start off with, I thought a meet and greet lunch with my senior staff, where they will give you a progress update on the fleet’s readiness, a briefing from the department of colonial affairs on their plans, a tactical briefing based on the DCA’s plans and the Corp of Engineers will update you on how the shipyards are progressing. Is there anything else you’d like to see or be briefed on?” He asked the two, his tone now more casual. Whilst the two men had reputations, they weren't overly big on formality, they were old school. They ran on mutual respect.

"You can scrap the briefings," Milok replied, also dropping formality. "We are really here to see if we can lend any of our collective authorities to help speed things along. I know how these things can be. But lunch with your Senior Officers does sound like a good idea. I heard your chef is a wizard." Milok replied, a glint in her eye.

It was true, his chef's reputation was well known in the fleet. This had lead to various 'spot inspections' whilst the Excelsior was gearing up. "Is it true his gumbo is the Sisko recipe?" Atticus asked, also dropping the formal tone.


The meet and greet lunch with the Senior Officer's had gone really well. The Sisko Gumbo was enjoyed very much by the Senior Officers, but even more so by Atticus and Milok. Atticus had been challenged to a game of Poker by the Senior Staff upon their next cycle back to the Alpha Quadrant.

Just as lunch was finishing, a ship had dropped out of warp above the stationary Task Group, the Valkyrie Class Carrier, USS Ark Royal, which house two Marine Battalions and 3 Air Wings, not to mention two Defiant Class Starships it housed in the rear. It was a monster of a starship. The Ark Royal was the last addition to the large Task Group that would make its way to advance Task Force 38’s explorative efforts.

[Excelsior Ready Room]

"What is it, Mel? I know that look. You're worrying about something." Peter said of his First Officer. He had known her since he took command of the Excelsior in 2389. He hadn't known it then, but she was invaluable to him and had become a friend to him. She was everything Peter needed in a First Officer but Peter knew, at some point probably in the very near future, she'd fly the coup and take on her own Command. She was more than ready, that was not a doubt that plagued him, it was just how he was going to find a First Officer that he could work with so well. Albeit he had just as good a relationship with Sierra, his Second Officer but she was just as ready for her own Command.

"You really think so?" She asked a lopsided grin forming on her face, which initially took him by surprise as she had been stood there with the tell-tale frown and sucking in of her cheeks, but this wasn't a distraction, her demeanor had definitely changed. But Peter had at that moment forgotten his thoughts were not his own. Melifa Thrall, was a Betazoid, with very powerful telepathic abilities, having been recruited by Starfleet Intelligence years prior.

He shook his head in feigned irritation. "Do I really think what?" He asked feigning ignorance. "Oh, don't backtrack now. I just heard your thoughts loud and clear. You really think I'm ready for my own Command?” She matched him with feigned shocked face.

Peter rolled his eyes. “Anyway.” He said. “What’s on your mind?” He asked giving her a bemused expression. “I don’t know really. So much is changing. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad we are going back to the Round Table. I miss Diogara.” She answered.

Peter nodded. “Me too.” He said wistfully, his thoughts turning to his wife on Diogara Station. He hasn’t seen her for over 6 months. His return to the Alpha Quadrant had been more prolonged than he had originally anticipated due to the organisational logistics he found himself responsible for. He had never intended to be away from Lannie for this long. “Well, we weren’t talking about the same thing.” She laughed shaking her head. “Although, I do miss her too, just not in the same way.” She said continued to chuckle.

“Well,” Peter said standing up. “Let’s not keep the planet or my wife waiting. Let’s go.”