CO V CO
Season 2: Mission 2: Just Breath
Location: Eclipse Ready Room
Phoenix had retreated to Gary's ready room and taken up residence on the couch by the wall. She was studying a PADD.
She looked up as he entered. "Doing well out there Captain Taylor" She smiled.
Gary smiled back at her, their friendship went beyond the usual Captain/First Officer relationship. Phoenix was the first one to welcome him to the Elysium, the first to show trust and confidence in him. In return she got a fiercely loyal officer that would stand beside her through thick and thin and more importantly a friend.
"Is that a question or a statement?" He bantered back as he sat behind his desk, "Have to admit I could use to this very quickly."
A small smile crossed her face at that. "I do hope that when the offer is made, you consider it carefully and do not just run out leaving me with no XO and no Second Officer, as I am sure Lia would go with you."
He chuckled softly, "I'd never run out on you and I have no plans on leaving you or the Elysium." He replied seriously "And neither does Lia as far as I know. However it's nice to know we'd be missed if for no other reason we're warm bodies holding down a position."
"You'd be missed because you both are invaluable to the Elysium and to me. It is what makes me fine with leading the away mission, knowing you have my back here on the Eclipse." Phoenix said placing the PADD beside her on the couch.
"I appreciate the compliment …. did you say leading the away mission?" He questioned not sure he had heard her right. "I know you are suppose to negotiate the talks but leading an away mission?" He repeated.
She smiled rather impishly. "I am not going to leave Styles in charge on the Elysium. Marines get ideas dont'cha know. I will go over with a small group and once the bridge is clear, take back command. Then when we arrive at the destination, you can come out of cloak and back us up."
"I do know." He nodded in agreement. yet not sharing her smile. "However are you sure it's a good idea for you to lead the away mission? Wouldn't it be better to have Lia go over secure everything then have you beam aboard? You are much too important to beam over while the situation is in a state of flux. Something goes wrong you could become a hostage."
She considered his words. "Its a good thing those words were not about my being a female." She mused. The last man who had used that sort of argument with her, had been told off in many different and varied words. "While I understand your concern, I would put it this way. I go, I lead the away team, it shows the man we are looking to speak with that I am no wilting flower, hiding behind my big strong security team while they do the dirty work. I have led away missions before Gary. You know it. And in dangerous places. I will be fine."
"Come on Phoenix, this has nothing to do with you being female and everything to do with you being a highly valuable and important member of Starfleet. I don't think you have to worry about anyone who meets you thinking you are a wilting flower. Rather it shows good sense and prudence to make sure the area is secure. Yes" He conceded "You have led away missions but this one is different. You're acting as an emissary for Starfleet, higher stakes."
"Yes but this group are fringe dwellers they will want the emissary to be strong and have shown strength."
He shook his head in disagreement, "I think they would respect an emissary that shows good sense and doesn't leap right into the fire." He countered.
She had to smile at that. "You know this is the first argument we have had over my being on an away mission. I wonder why after nearly 18 months it has finally happened?"
Gary chuckled and shook his head, "Oh, we aren't arguing Phoenix, we're discussing the merits of you leading an away mission. I guess, it's because even though it's temporary I am a Captain and until we catch the hijackers you are under my protection so to speak so I feel even more responsible. Not to mention also because you are the hand picked emissary of Command."
She sighed. "Ok I will make a deal with you. The Away team beams over, Once they have secured the access point, I will join them."
Gary smiled, relieved that Phoenix had agreed to let security secure the area before she beamed over. "Deal." He answered then added "Anything you want in return?"
"I'll let you know" She smirked.
"That's what I was afraid of." He sighed, "Me and my big mouth."
"Too late now." She stood. "I'll get the briefing underway shortly. We need to get our home back."
He rose in response to her standing. "I'll be there and yes,I couldn't agree more. We need to get our home back."
Flashing him a smile Phoenix turned for the door. "Command looks good on you Gary."
Her simple comment, touched him. He straightened up and squared his shoulders. "Thank you Captain. Thank you very much."
Captain Phoenix Lalor
Commander Gary Taylor
Executive Officer/ Commanding Officer
USS Elysium/USS Eclipse