17/02/2016 at 20:28 #5151
[[Personal log, Lt. Eric Aramond, TSN Raven, 2nd Fleet 4th LD
Let’s start this off by being completely honest: I have no idea what happened this shift. It’s probably that the whirlwind of activity has left me a bit frazzled. Even hours later with a stiff drink in hand, I’m still not quite myself.
Today marked the start of my term as Duty Officer. With my luck, I got little sleep. I can honestly say that it wasn’t my nerves that kept me up (there was plenty of that earlier). No, some [EXPLETIVE DELETED] decided that the night was the best time to do some internal maintenance. Not even my new rank gave me the authority to put a stop to it. If I ever find out who scheduled that, I’m gonna give them a piece of my mind.
Needless to say, I wasn’t the happiest as I walked into the galley. Though my new duties meant actually showing up early, I were still a few officers that had gotten there ahead of me. Just as I greeted them, I received a message from the senior officers. It turns out that Command had just developed a major upgrade to ship systems. Rather than taking the time to let the engineering teams get everything installed and up to date between shifts, it was decided that the updates would be given to the bridge crews to install right before our missions. Great. My list of people to yell at quickly grows.
Installing the upgrades is not what you’d call “simple”, but I did my best to walk everyone through it. Early on, Lt. Jr. Quinn (my ADO) and I were called away to get a new cadet through processing. After double-checking his paperwork I left Quinn to give him a brief run though, while I made my way back to the galley to make sure all the officers were updated.
The next half hour consisted of me running around with a stack of data pads, updating each new arrival of what was happening. While also setting up upgrades my own data pad, keeping an eye on the clock, and generally raging at command. At one point, another officer was handing out written instructions for the updates, thus saving me from having to repeat the same thing over and over again. At that point, troubleshooting took up the rest of the time. If I can remember who did that, I’m buying them a drink.
The top of the hour came and I got everyone to the briefing room. Role call went fine, aside from my stumbling over Quinn in the order. We ended up with 24 active officers. I completely missed any announcements that were made, due to making sure my own upgrades were prepared. I didn’t even notice that Xavier wasn’t around until I looked at the roster. This time the division would be lead by Captain Evans and the TSN Hawk.
Getting unassigned officers to ships was simple enough. Everyone got to take their primary, which is always nice for the low ranks. Cadet Blaze asked to be sent to the Hydra. I’m not sure of the protocol on this, but I sent him over. Only after meeting Tardov, Wade, and Gebbens on the Raven was it pointed out that I had gotten every ship but the Raven and Hawk fully staffed. This would come back to bite us later.
With Gebbens working SciComms, Wade manning the Weapons, Tardov down in Engineering, and myself on Helm; we were ready for the first simulation. I’m wondering if these upgrades also altered the enemy AI, because I was no longer just flying over to a group of ships and lining up our beams. We actually had to work. I remember one moment where a Skaaran was leading us on a winding chase through the sector at slightly less than Warp 1. Keeping it in optimal position for our beams was no easy task.
During our second sim, I was called away to get a late arrival set up. Briefing him on the upgrades took a bit longer than either of us would have liked. Despite us still being understaffed, I sent him to the Hawk. With them as the lead ship, I figured they could use an extra hand more. When I was finally able to get back to the bridge, Gebbens put me in command while he flew the ship. Captain Evans was giving us some pretty simple orders, so nothing too fancy was needed.
Our mission was about to get underway. We were all warmed up, and ready to take out some more Unakalhi. Of course, this is when I was pinged by another late arrival. Gritting my teeth, I again excused myself from the bridge, none too happy about leaving the ship understaffed again. Meeting me was Lt. Kennon Far. I was out of prepared data pads at this point, so another lengthy process was needed to get his own ready. Normally, Kennon is posted on the Hawk. I pulled him to the Raven as much needed help.
What we came back to can only be described as comical. Gebbens was back on Helm, glaring at the screen. Wade was stretched between Science and Weapons, his gaze darting between the two stations, and his fingertip barely touching the firing controls. Tardov had actually run a long cable from Comms to her console down in Engineering. Kennon rushed to pick up the slack while I swore and took the Helm controls from our acting captain.
At this point, I had no idea what was going on. I was tired, frustrated, and my data pad was no longer syncing with the ship, denying me a sector map. I felt like I was back at the Academy, relying completely on Science for navigation. I’m glad I’m not at the Academy anymore. Fortunately, we hadn’t gotten blown up by the end, and I docked us successfully.
For the last sim, the upgrades gave us the ability to test something that the entire division had been buzzing about for the last few cycles. Fighters. The division was split onto three ships to test out how we did with carriers and their fighters. On the Raven, I volunteered to stay on the bridge alongside Tardov. Due to my temperament, I didn’t want to deal with piloting a fighter. Leonard, feeling the exact opposite, stepped up as CAG. Assassino, being the most familiar with fighters, explained how they would work.
There were a few false starts. It seems that the Raven at least doesn’t like being told that she’s a carrier. Whoever had been in command stepped out as well, leaving me the highest ranking officer on the bridge. I really don’t remember. This is how out of it I was.
The next sim attempt was a success. Too bad the overall exercise was a disaster. It turns out that only having two bridge crew on a carrier is a bad idea. Especially when one is an Ensign and the other is a half-aware Lieutenant. We also seem to have no protocol for pilots. As soon as we were up and running, most of the pilots launched immediately. Without any targets or orders. As Leonard and I were shouting at them, a Skaaran was making a beeline for us. To avoid it, I took the carrier away from the nearby station. Did I leave any of the pilots behind? You bet I did.
This is where the rest falls into a haze. At some point, all the fighters came back. We got into position, and I gave the order to launch to Leonard. this caused system to crash, bringing an end to the sim and the shift. I managed to go through the dismissal without mumbling, though I think I screwed something up. Afterwards, there was more talk of testing fighters. I didn’t stay to find out details. I was already imagining passing out in my bunk.
[[End log]]17/02/2016 at 20:39 #5153MatsiyanParticipant
// Awesome and very much in agreement with my feelings about the upgrades and empathy for the familiar challenges and opportunities of the Duty Officer. Very important to balance crew sizes more than resolve specialties. Also very humorous 🙂
Matsiyan = Coffee
Mundy = “Dammit!”
Aramond = [EXPLETIVE DELETED]17/02/2016 at 20:58 #5155VerokParticipant
// I felt really bad for you reading through this Aramond, but I confess that I laughed a lot as well as I was reading. Then I felt bad again for laughing. Then started laughing again.17/02/2016 at 21:20 #5158
//Matsyian, I never realized that a bunch of us have running “gags” for our logs. Now I’m tempted to go through others to see if I can find more.
//Verok, that just means I’m succeeding. Even during the shift, I was doing my best to keep the “rage” humorous. While most of the feelings were real, Eric was about 1000 times angrier that I actually was.17/02/2016 at 21:36 #5165QuinnParticipant
What a tough shift. We survived it though!
With any luck we won’t have another update for a while, but knowing the R&D department however, we probably will. At least everyone is an expert on it now!
Just keep gritting your teeth and trying to find the silver lining, Aramond!17/02/2016 at 22:18 #5176Blaze StrifeParticipant
I did help a little, though I didn’t want to impose myself on the officers ranked higher than myself, so I was just quietly giving a few advices here and there. But there were others who were much louder than myself, walking around and checking everyone, though I cannot remember who it was, either. It was chaotic, after all. I do hope most shifts are not as chaotic as this one was.
The arrival of the fighters to the Division might have something to do with the arrival of so many of us green Cadets. I was pushed out of the Academy rather hastily and sent here. Maybe they didn’t want to risk the more experienced officers on the fighters. A horrible thought, but not unthinkable. //This is under the assumption that the fighters are manned, and not controlled from the carrier.
//What’s a CAG?17/02/2016 at 23:28 #5184John van LeighParticipant
//CAG is for Commander, Air Group, the designation for the officer in charge of a fighter wing.
Cadet Blaze asked to be sent to the Hydra. I’m not sure of the protocol on this, but I sent him over.
Instead of giving you a straight answer, I’m gonna justify you and then play Devil’s advocate. As the DO, you have the right to apply your discretion when moving around unassigned people, so, should you receive a request from the Cadet, you can accept it or reject it with or without any reason (even though in this particular case, I’m glad you did, having a cadet actually remembering to lower and raise shields is the equivalent of finding actual tea leaves in the mess hall). Then again, a cadet is supposed to get a larger sample of command styles, procedures, ship classes, and different crews, in order to allow for him to be informed the day he has to file for a permanent assignment.17/02/2016 at 23:55 #5190
Quinn, I’m dealing with enough silver right now. These Lieutenant bars don’t polish themselves. Can we have a cloudless day, please?
del Pino, thanks for the clarification, sir. I’ll keep that in mind.
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