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The Skinny on Cindy

Posted on Tue Aug 11th, 2020 @ 11:40pm by Rear-Admiral John Wheeler & Lieutenant Arev

Mission: Mission 3.5 - Some R & R
Location: Wheeler's Office
Timeline: 2261. 245 at 0900

After a day that Legacy had been back, Admiral Wheeler knew that it was long past time to check up on his pet project. So far, Wheeler had been disappointed by the reports. Cindy was succeeding by all counts and that just was unacceptable to him. Somehow she had deftly shown skill at avoiding a war with the Klingons started by the Romulans. Then, despite Orions invading Legacy, she managed to turn the tables on the Orions. And most recently, she solved the bleeding dimensional realities and sealed it off.

Arev was supposed to make sure that she failed and report incompetence. Yet, nothing of the sort had occurred. He had to determine what was going wrong. Therefore he summoned the Romulan to his office.

Once given permission, Arev entered the Admiral's office and stood at attention. He had to force himself not to salute."

"Lieutenant Arev reporting as ordered Admiral," he said.

The doors closed hard behind Arev. White noise filled the room and Wheeler's grin faded. "Saren, you disappoint me. The reports that you have sent me are simply inadequate. Reading them, I would nearly believe that you want the Captain Cheerleader to succeed."

"If I were to have completed your assignment at that time", Arev replied. "The risk of Starfleet losing a Constitution class vessel was very high. Given the state of the fleet and the risk, I chose to bide my time. Plus, with the temporal fluctuations that were happening, the Captain could have easily claimed it was a different version of herself that created the mistake. If I may be so bold, coming from a race that practices politics and backstabbing on a level that makes what humans call politics look like grade school squabbling, your plan as is, is fundamentally flawed. You are missing a key element."

Wheeler started to turn a bit red as the Romulan addressed him. "You do still realize that I hold your very life in my hands, Saren. You should be careful how you tread." He thought for a moment and his stoic military face returned. "That being said, I am more than a little curious how you believe that my plans are flawed."

"When a child falls when they are walking, usually the worse they suffer is an abrasion or bruise", Arev said. "When a child is climbing a tree and falls out of it, they often break bones or worse. Simply put, given Starfleet's need for Captains, they are fast tracking many people. Captain Jackson, to follow my reasoning, is no more than a child walking right now. Any report of what might normally be deemed incompetence by a captain will be written off as growing pains by Starfleet Command as they wouldn't want to admit their actions are putting forth inferior candidates. You would be seen as bucking the decisions of Command and perhaps seen as too much of a hard-ass I believe is the phrase humans use and perhaps distancing other Admirals from you."

He paused a moment.

"Now, imagine if for a while, you seemingly mentor the Captain and help her climb the proverbial tree. Then you shake the tree a bit and cause her to fall. You can then feign sadness and disappointment claiming that you had hope for the Captain and knew that as a young captain she needed tutelage from more experienced officers such as yourself. Your goal of discrediting the Captain will succeed, you will be seen as an officer who tries to build up those below him so that Starfleet has a qualified pool of Captains. Other Admirals will see you in a better light and praise your leadership abilities and those below you will want to have you command them, gaining you a loyal following."

The Admiral stroked his chin. "That is true; however, she will still be running the ship for a longer period of time, that no good cheerleader..." he grumbled. "And you have not produced anything yet regarding her, have you? Everyone just loves her, right?" he asked in a knowing disappointed tone.

Although his face was stoic, as usual, Arev thought, 'By the elements this man is thick.'

"Most of the crew admire her, that is true", Arev replied. "And you should show the pride a mentor has in a protege. When the fall does come, her crew will turn their backs on her and you will show the level of disappointment a mentor should. You can then bring the betrayed to your side and the captain will be disgraced and an outcast. No person would want serve with her, even if she somehow regained her command. On top of everything given your leadership the next career review is much clearer for the next stripe on your sleeve. Romulan have a saying. When you step on the back of an adversary, make sure it moves you up the mountain. My way may take longer, but the rewards to you as well as the disgrace the Captain experiences, will be far greater."

"The idea of advancing a proper Federation and military over Cindy's political corpse does sound appetizing. I think you may be on to something, Saren. "I will take your advice for now but understand your life is still mine."

He gave a brief nod.

"I do wonder how Captain Jackson is going to react when I am pleasant with her when assigning her next mission. If only I could be a fly on the wall. Hm. Oh, that's right, I have people that will be the next best thing."

"I completely understand that I am in your debt", Arev replied. "Which is why I am trying to re-pay your generosity with my experience. I may not look it, but I am sixty years old and with that comes a whole range of experience which I will use to make sure your goals are achieved. Your patience will be well rewarded."

"It had better be, Saren. If it is not, you will find yourself wishing that you were never born."

"Understood Admiral", Arev said. "I will keep you informed."

One thing he would not inform the Admiral off was that, that last threat had been the last one Arev would take. In the end, even if Captain Jackson fell, Arev would make sure the Admiral fell harder and further.

"Is there anything else you would like from me sir?"

Giving Arev a crocodile smile, Wheeler responded, "No, that will be all. As usual, I appreciate your help."

"You are most welcome Admiral", Arev replied and left the Admiral's office.


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