An Offer You Mustn't Refuse
Location: Soran's Office
Timeline: MD01 2100
Caleb pulled the steaming hot chicken out of the oven His quarters had a full kitchen, so he didn’t need to rely on the replicator, a luxury they could afford on a starbase that they couldn’t have on a ship. And given he was raised in a house that didn’t even have a replicator, Caleb much prefered real food.
Aleczandra looked up at her father as he brought the barbecue chicken to the table. “That smells great, Dad,” she said.
There was still a bit of awkward tension between them, but this was the first night Caleb had been able to get Zandra to agree to have dinner with him, as was their tradition.
“It should smell good,” Caleb said. “It was yer grandma’s recipe.” He headed back to get the baked beans and the macaroni and cheese. “Wanna get the cole slaw from the fridge?”
“Sure,” Zandra said.
Mika had been a rather horrible cook, despite the fact that the first host of the Naqiis symbiote had been a homemaker. Too many centuries of relying on replicators or something. So Caleb had taken care of most of the home needs throughout their marriage, though he tried to pass on his skills to Aleczandra, and the girl was a pretty decent cook herself.
“There’s beer in there, too,” Caleb said. “Had Gino get it in from Earth. Ya can have one,” he emphasized. He figured maybe it would loosen her up so they could finally talk about...things.
Aleczandra grinned. “Awesome!”
The chirp of Caleb’s communicator interrupted. "Commander Ryan. Commander Soran wants to see you in her office immediately," said the young voice at the other end of the line, one of the multiple crew who populated the Ops centre on the gamma shift. "She said it’s top priority."
Caleb sighed. “Seriously?” he asked, looking over to his daughter.
Aleczandra shrugged. “Go,” she said. “I can pack this up.”
Caleb shook his head. “No. Why don’t ya...call Teena, see if she can join ya,” he said, only cringing a little bit. “Jus’...no funny business.”
Caleb tapped his badge. “Ryan heah. Ah’m on my way,” he said in a resigned tone.
A few minutes later, Caleb strode off the turbolift into Ops. He nodded to the security officer on duty and the officer on conn as he walked toward Soran’s office and pressed the chime.
"Enter." Soran was still at her desk, still in uniform, still looking stiff, but tired with it. She didn't look up, scribbling something onto a padd. "The chair is in the corner, if you need it."
Caleb frowned as he entered and glanced over at the chair. He didn’t need it, per se, but he didn’t understand why Soran didn’t just have it in place. Since he didn’t know how long this was going to take, he walked over and retrieved the chair, turning it backward and straddling it, leaning forward on his arms on the back.
“It’s a little late, Commander,” Caleb pointed out. “Ah’ve got roast chicken gettin’ cold an’ missin’ dinner with mah daughter.”
"You're promoted to my XO, effective immediately." If he wanted her to get the point, she could do that.
Caleb blinked. “Excuse me, sir?” he asked. “Ah’m not sure Ah heard ya right. Did ya just say I’ve been promoted to XO? What happened ta Krang? An’ why me?” They hadn’t exactly gotten along. But then he hadn’t gotten along with the Romulan, either.
"Mr. Darkmoon was temperamentally unsuited to the position. I've sent him back to Starfleet Command." Soran didn't say more. "I chose to promote you than risk whatever other person they chose to send. You have knowledge of the station, and the factions within it. You were calm under pressure during the emergency, and showed grace under fire during that travesty with the Lissepians. If you don't want it, you'd best say so."
Caleb considered. It had been a step down in his career coming to a Security Chief position from his Executive Officer position at Leto Colony. This would be a step back onto the career path. Though since his wife’s death, his career had been less important than being there for Aleczandra, and recovering emotionally and physically.
Caleb took a breath and nodded. “Ah’ll do it, then, sir,” he told Soran. “Thank ya for thinkin’ of me.”
She dismissed his thanks with a gesture of her fingers. "It's the rational choice."
Caleb nodded and turned to leave, still a bit shell shocked at this turn of events.
Commander Maritza Soran
Commander Caleb Ryan
NPC Caleb Ryan