Funeral For a Friend
Posted on Fri Apr 6th, 2018 @ 4:07pm by Captain Henry Crow & Banks & Commander Edra Crow & Commander Vox Templar & Lieutenant Commander Caressa Melanick & Lieutenant Commander Brielle Jayde & Lieutenant Constance Stewart & Lieutenant Edruj Daughter of Thrawn & Lieutenant JG Kayla Straut & Lieutenant JG Chance Crow
Edited on on Tue Apr 10th, 2018 @ 9:37am
The Voyage Home
Location: Cargo Bay 1
The cargo bay had been set up with enough seats for every member of the crew. At the front of the room was the UFP flag. At either end of the coffin was a security officer who had been rotating shifts to always guard it. As word of Hartsfield's sacrifice and actions had spread he had become a ship celebrity, ironic for a man who'd kept to himself, to the point there was an informal petition circulating to rename the shuttle bay he'd used for his experiment in his honor.
As the crowd began to file in Henry entered with Edra at his side, tucking his written remarks into a pocket before taking a seat in the front row. She sat next to him, with a solemn look on her face. She hadn't known the Lieutenant for very long, but his enthusiasm had been contagious, and had also been what had saved them. The ship itself was still on it's way toward Federation Space, but communications had been sent ahead of their return. The relief of arriving back in their galaxy, coupled with the tragedy of Lt. Hartsfield, had left emotions raw, and Edra expected this to be a sort of culmination of all that. Her pockets contained multiple handkerchiefs in anticipation of it.
Caressa sat quietly, she did not know Hartsfield well, she had been keeping to sick bay of late. She really did not fit in anywhere among the crew. She was the odd man or woman out. She pulled at the neckline of her uniform, thinking to herself they really make these things too tight. She looked at the rest of the crew making note of those who might need some counseling. She was glad to be home. She waited.
Brielle looked over as Henry and Edra had sat down but didn’t say anything. Razot was sitting next to her but seemed a little spaced out. He was looking more just straight ahead than anything else. Hartsfield was one of his officers, and it was hitting far too close to home. She’d been in a bit of a fog herself, the message that was left for them playing over and over in her head over the last few days. They were home, yes, but at great cost.
Wearing her dress uniform Lt. Stewart walked into the Cargo bay. She was one of the Security officers guarding Lt Hartford's casket. She was standing at attention her uniform spotless, hair in perfect place. She felt so full of sorrow for this brave man she barely knew, but he was still a part of this crew she would mourn for him as she would for any other crew member who gave his life so that we all could go home. Just wish there was a way he could be saved. In her eyes he was a hero, and would treated as such.
Once the crowd had assembled and taken their seats, Henry took a deep breath and stood, walking to the podium at the front of the room.
"We're gathered here to remember someone that most of us didn't know very well. I think he kind of liked it that way but in the short time I knew Lieutenant Hartsfield I'm not sure I ever met someone more fitted for their role on a starship. His sacrifice, for hundreds of people, most of whom never knew he existed reminds us that we are all called to a higher purpose when we put on this uniform. The good of the many. We're here, together, because this man put himself on the line so that we may go on. In our time spent in that exotic galaxy we met many peoples and traveled to strange new worlds but as the saying goes there's no place like home. Thank you Lieutenant, for making that a reality."
He paused, before looking back to the crowd. "As you know we're on route back to Earth and I expect everyone will be debriefed once we get there. We'll be in orbit for a few days, maybe a week until we receive new orders. I urge you to take that time to reconnect with friends and loved ones, either in person or via messages. We should never forget that the lessons we have learned. Dismissed."
He walked down from the podium and returned to Edra. "Well that was rough."
Edra took his hand as he sat down. "You did fine." As she spoke, she watched the pall bearers begin the flag-folding ceremony. She and Henry would accept it until they reached Earth where they could pass it on to his family.
Caressa watched Henry walk back to his seat. Her mind wandered. He was as handsome as ever. Why could she not get over him? She adjusted her collar once again. Thinking to herself she just needed to bury herself deeper in her work. Watching the final display of funeral honors.
Vox had sat through the entire ceremony without a word, a piercing gaze on his face as he contemplated the death that was affecting the crew so much. After the dismissal, he rose from his seat near everyone else and silently turned to leave by himself. He had seen many good officers give their lives for the cause but this one seemed extra troubling. It wasn't easy to bury one of your own no matter what circumstances. He took one last, long look at the draped casket before smoothing his beret over once. He wheeled around and left the room, echoes of the past trailing behind him.
Leaning on the door was Kayla. Her uniform was spotless as she stared hard at the casket. She did not know the man laying there, she just knew that he was a hero for the crew. Nodding to Vox as he went by, Kayla stood straight and walked out.
It didn’t take long for Brielle to have tears in her eyes, but she wiped them away as soon as Henry was done. Looking over to Razot, she put a hand on his shoulder, letting him know to take all the time that he needed, and she’d be back in their quarters. At this point, there wasn’t much she could do but give him comfort and allow him to deal with it in his own way. Pulling herself from her seat, she gave a small nod to some of the others before stepping out, allowing the tears to flow freely as she walked.