Taking Time – Helping a Hologram
by Rear Admiral Iluvar & Lieutenant Mia Drake

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Post Details

Title   Helping a Hologram
Mission   Taking Time
Author(s)   Rear Admiral Iluvar & Lieutenant Mia Drake
Posted   Sun Jan 24, 2010 @ 1:41pm
Location   Main Engineering, USS Tethys
Timeline   Shoreleave 2, 1240
ON: [[Mess Hall, USS Tethys, Shoreleave 2, 1240]]

Unlike most lunch periods, the Tethys' mess hall was unusually quiet. Most of the crew were enjoying their shoreleave on the station where there were unique establishments and opportunities not found on board the Prometheus-class starship. Those few who did remain were either trying to catch up on work or hoping to find solace in the peace and quiet.

In one corner of the room, beneath the large viewports, a young hologram leaned against the bulkhead and stared at the stars outside. Every once and awhile, a small tug or a shuttle would pass by the exterior, but Peter (NPC) ignored them. In fact, he wasn't really paying all that much attention to what was going on around him. His mind was elsewhere as he continued to stand out of the way.

Iluvar and Aris (NPC) would be getting back from their camping adventure soon and Peter was interested to hear from Aris how the trip went. He knew Aris had really been looking forward to the outing for a long time and, although Peter had not been able to go along, he still wanted to know that everything turned out fine. Slowly, he pushed himself off the bulkhead and took one last look out the viewport.

Just as he was about to turn away, his body shimmered once. Peter looked down at himself, slightly alarmed. He'd not every seen something like that happen ever since he first came out of the holodeck. After waiting a moment to see if it would happen again, he was relieved that it did not. Maybe he would need to make a stop in Engineering first.

[[Main Engineering, USS Tethys]]

McCabe looked over the repair schedule a third time and sighed. Juggling the repairs and maintenance with shoreleave schedules was a logistical nightmare at the best of times, no less so now. He leaned heavily against the main Engineering console, rubbing his eyes tiredly.

"Hey McCabe," came a voice from the far end of the Engineering deck. "You joining us on the station? We're gonna check out this new club on the Promenade!" The ever-smiling face of Petty Officer Spiros Papadopolous beamed like a beacon from across the room.

McCabe smiled but shook his head. "I can't, I have to get these repairs done, or the Admiral will have my head." He put on a mock-stern voice. "I'm sorry Admiral, we can't give you warp becuase the core is in four pieces on the deck." He shook his head ruefully. "You guys go on ahead, and behave yourselves!" he admonished.

Spiros laughed heartily, and disappeared around the corner. The Engineer's Mate was about to return to his work when he caught sight of Peter entering Engineering, an unusual enough sight that it peaked his interest. "Hi Peter. What brings you to the ship's dungeons?" McCabe said with a smile.

"Just thought I'd stop by," Peter remarked, "I've kinda been roaming the corridors and I happened to be in the neighborhood." That wasn't entirely the truth, but Peter was having a hard time admitting that there might be something wrong with his matrix. The last time he had done that, the operations officer at the time had nearly decompiled him.

McCabe raised an eyebrow at that. Something about it didn't ring true. He knew a fair bit about Peter's program and knew that he was about as close as made no difference to sentient. Gently, Rodney probed the young man. "You sure that's the only reason?" he said quietly.

For a moment, Peter didn't say anything. On the one hand, he didn't want people to think that he couldn't handle the 'real world', but on the other, if it was something serious, then he needed to get it fixed. With a sigh, the young hologram replied, "Well, I was wondering if you could run a...diagnostic...on my matrix."

Rodney smiled, immediately understanding the situation. "Sure. I could use a break from this stuff anyway," he said easily, exchanging the PADD for a tricorder. "Anything in particular I should be looking for? Or is this a basic... uh... checkup?"

Peter hesitated. If he told the man what to look for, then they might find out the cause of his fluctuation earlier. Then again, if it was a serious problem, it would show up on the routine check-up. He decided that he'd wait and see if anything came up in the basic check-up first, then go from there. "Yeah, just a basic one," Peter replied.

Rodney stared at Peter for a long moment before he spoke, his initial suspicions confirmed. "Join me in the office, this isn't the right place to do this kind of thing," he said. As they entered the privacy of the Engineering office, Rodney sat on the edge of the desk. "You know Peter, there's no shame in asking for help with something. If I don't feel well, I go see the Doctor. It doesn't mean I'm 'defective', or unable to do my job. I'm just having a little difficulty. Your case is... a little different, but if there's something wrong, it would be better if you told me." The engineer hoped he wasn't being too blunt, but he also didn't want to see anything happen to the hologram.

Surprised that the engineer had nailed the issue on the head, Peter still wasn't sure if he was willing to admit defeat on this one. He'd always been a strong leader, not a follower. It wasn't really in his nature to admit weakness, even though he knew that it was something he needed to work on. The words Aslan had spoken to him just after Caspian's coronation rang in his mind and he realized that he was going to have to be honest. "Well, I'm a little concerned," Peter explained, "earlier today, in the mess hall...I shimmered. It was only a brief moment, but I was worried that it might be signs of a problem...or maybe something left over from when my program first left the holodeck." Lieutenant Gor had made a number of drastic modifications and maybe the man hadn't put them all back right like they thought.

McCabe nodded thoughtfully, eyeing his tricorder. He understood Peter's reluctance, and smiled to show his understanding. "Tell you what. I'll run a few non-intrusive diagnostics on your program. Odds are it's something minor that we can fix up easily. I could use your help with the diagnostic actually," he said, realizing that Peter might still be nervous about someone tampering with his program. On reflection, the Engineer realized that if his existence could be threatened by a simple syntax error, he'd be nervous too.

"Really," Peter asked, slightly surprised. He'd never been asked to assist with shipboard functions before, let alone his own diagnostics. The man's offer was an unusual one for Peter to hear from anyone aside from a few individuals.

The Engineer shrugged and smiled. "Why not? I drive doctors nuts because I always want to know exactly what they're doing to me. Besides, I figure you've got a right to see what's going on inside you," he said. "Tell you what, I'm going to set aside an hour on the holodeck at say, 1300 hours tomorrow and we can start running some basic tests." He keyed some things into the PADD. "In the meantime, if you have any fluctuations in your matrix, you let me know right away, ok?"

"Alright," Peter replied. Though he was still a little unsure about the procedure, the engineer's assurance that he would be included in the knowledge of what was going on made it a little less uncertain for the young hologram. "Holodeck 1, tomorrow, 1300 hours," he repeated back, "I will be there."

McCabe grinned. "Great! Don't worry, we'll track down the problem, what ever it is. I know you've had issues in the past with people tampering around in your matrix, but I promise I won't do any major... uh... surgery without talking to you about it first."

"Thank you," Peter said gratefully. He could only hope that the engineer was correct and that whatever it was would be a minor thing. It would probably be best not to let his mind dwell on it, otherwise he'd probably end up worrying himself even more than necessary.

"See you tomorrow," Rodney said, rising and grabbing his PADD. "Now, back to the salt mines for me."


Peter Pevensie
Holographic Mentoring Program

Crewman 1st Class Rodney McCabe
Engineer's Mate