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Posted on Wed May 13th, 2020 @ 2:46am by Rear Admiral Leon Ryan & Captain Cronin Keys [GM] & Lieutenant Ailig Keys [Cronin]
Edited on on Sat Jul 4th, 2020 @ 11:57am

Mission: Pre-Launch + Pre-Mission 1 Stories
Location: Mars, Utopia Planitia Fleet Yards, USS Voyager, Briefing Room
Timeline: 3 Weeks Prior to Launch


Commander Cronin Keys and Lieutenant Ailig Keys walked through the Intrepid-class starship's bridge as they were summoned by Rear Admiral Leon Ryan when both Keys' starships had docked at the orbital drydocks. "What could the Admiral want?" Ailig asked, clueless.

"No idea," Cronin replied though he hoped nothing bad like being kicked from the project. That would crush both men's dream of exploring the Delta.

"He better not." Ailig said as if he had read Cronin's mind, though they had been mated for a while now and so to some extent the constant extrasensory exposure to Ailig had allowed the Human to 'hear' Cronin's strong thoughts.

Cronin smiled for he was happy to share thoughts and would always leave his mind open to Ailig like a string between them. He tapped the Briefing Room's door chime, the Admiral had been using it as his office but would move to another actual office when the fleet launched so the senior officers of Voyager could have their meeting space back.

"Come," Leon's voice sounded from inside, though amplified a little by the door panel's speaker.

Cronin and Ailig entered and before they went to empty seats found an officer that Cronin seemed to find familiar while Ailig hadn't met before. The starship Pioneer's Executive Officer, Cronin finally placed the face. "Hello Commander," he faced Leon, "Admiral, you summoned us sir?"

"Yes Commander, Lieutenant," Leon greeted. "This is the Pioneer's Executive Officer and the Commanding Officer has just transferred out of the project due to personal reasons. So I am left with a starship without a CO."

"How come you haven't offered to take your captain's place?" Cronin asked the Executive Officer. Ailig placed a hand on Cronin's leg as if to say, 'don't be rude!'. Cronin did a quick nod at his husband for he'd apologise if the Admiral seemed annoyed by his questioning.

The XO glanced at Ryan and he nodded. "I am happy to be Executive Officer for now. I still have much to learn about Command." That seemed to end the conversation.

"Which brings me to why I have summoned you both here, I understand you have already requested that Lieutenant Keys join you on the Aurora but with this development I have to request that you become the Pioneer's new Commanding Officer and I can grant your," Leon gestured to Ailig, "transfer to the Pioneer but under the condition that you do not share the same shift."

Cronin and Ailig shared a long look, the XO watched them wondering what they would say. Leon observed them and knew that they were probably having a telepathic conversation, this was a giant step forward for Cronin as he would become a Captain. It usually alters many relationships across the Federation.

After several minutes Cronin turned to Ryan and nodded. "I accept your request sir," he said.

"As do I Admiral." Ailig added with a smile. "I hope there are replacements for us available on both the Wenjia and Aurora?" The helmsman asked, concerned for his Captain's losing capable officer.

"Yes," Cronin added for his promotion would leave the Aurora without an Executive Officer.

"I do have officers already preparing for reassignment to both ships." Leon said with a smirk.

"So you knew Cronin would accept?" Ailig asked with playful narrowed eyes and a conspiratorial tone.

"Captain Flower made the recommendation and knew that her Executive Officer was ready, she had hoped to keep him for the duration of our mission to the Delta quadrant but not many reserve command level officers available this seemed the best course of action." Leon said, he stood and approached the Keys offering both his hands. "Congratulations Captain Keys, I'll let your new Executive Officer over there help you two get settled and shuttled over to the Pioneer as there is not much time left and much still to do."

"Aye Admiral and thank you." Cronin said as both Keys held and shook the Rear Admiral's hand one at a time and the XO walked over as well. They shook hands as well, "after you Commander. I suggest we head back to your shuttle and do our farewells then head to our new ship."

The XO nodded. "Yes sir, Pioneer is currently at Mckinley Station, I had taken my former CO to Earth before coming here."

"Yes, the Pioneer's Senior Officers are still being selected and now it is your discretion Captain." Leon said with a smirk, "if you need any cutting of red tape let me know and I will see what I can do. Otherwise you all are dismissed." Ryan turned and headed back to his chair at the briefing table's head.

Cronin now saw the pile of padds and the computer, he smirked as well knowing that the Rear Admiral was very happy to dump this particular pile of issues into Cronin's lap. The Betazoid was up for the challenge of Command he had been training for since he was approved as the Aurora's XO.

The trio headed out of the Briefing Room but not onto the Bridge but the other way as they headed for the shuttlebay.



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