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A Measure of Intelligence, Part III

Posted on Wed Feb 6th, 2013 @ 3:30am by Lieutenant Commander Omen

Mission: Prequel
Location: Starbase 214
Timeline: Launch Date 88

"Careful," Omen peered sidelong as they walked. "Those sound like the words of a mercenary. Most in Starfleet expect unquestioning loyalty to come with the uniform."

Kallay wasn't hiding anything with his expression, he wasn't guarded but forthright, when he spoke a heavy hint of his Australian roots tinted his words, "I'm a spook that's been burned by the machinations of those above my pay grade. Right now the only one who has my complete loyalty is Iko. But I'm not here to sabotage your efforts, I am here to help get this finished by launch. We don't launch on time and I will be right back at that penal colony, and you don't know the definition of torture until you've been that close to the best waves on Earth and not able to go near them. That close to home..." He stopped then and shook his head, "bottom line, I'm not here to get in your way or underfoot, if I can help I will, if I can't I won't lie about it."

"You have your chance," Omen stopped to look Kallay deeply in the eyes. "What you do with it is up to you."

"Understood," Kallay said as he gave Omen a more appraising look and thought through that statement, my chance, in so many things, and as always requires I walk a tightrope to keep from falling to the sharks.

They reached the lift bank and Omen put his rank to use in shooing the civilians and noncoms back. Once the doors shut he and Kallay enjoyed a measure of privacy.

As the lift began to move the El-Aurian looked ahead as if at a distant memory. "The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever."

"Jacques Cousteau," Kallay grinned at Omen recognizing the quote, "I was born in the sea, literally, my mom was a little woo woo that way, she wanted to have me actually in the ocean. So I was caught in that net from the moment I was entered this world."

"Were there wild dolphins present?" Omen met his gaze, seeming to take the matter quite seriously.

"You know I never asked," Kallay said with a smile, it was obvious he adored his mother, "I will have to write her when I have the time and have her tell me the story again."

"I'm sure she'll be glad to hear from you." They reached Kallay's quarters and his biometrics immediately opened the door for him, activating lights and setting the temperature to his preferred comfort level.

Omen set the young lieutenant's things on the couch, turning to smile at the image of Kallay cradling the tiny Iko.

"I'll requisition a proper dog bed for Iko. I expect before long he'll need it."

"He'll probably just end up sleeping in my bed, but it's worth the effort, thank you," Kallay said with a grin.

"He's a large breed," Omen commented with a knowing smile, "Eventually he'll shove you out of bed."

Kallay laughed and scratched Iko's ears, setting him down so he could explore their new home, then he looked at Omen, "It's been a long trip, but once I've had a couple hours sleep I am at your disposal. Nox needs a lot of work and I'm not afraid to get my hands dirty if needed."

"That's good to know because we have need of a spook." The El-Aurian walked to the replicator. "Want a drink to help you sleep?"

"No thank you," Kallay said as he took a seat, Iko whined ande scratched his leg while he tried to jump up again. With a soft chuckle Kallay scooped up the puppy who turned twice next to him then lay down with his head on his paws, staring at Omen, "Don't you need to get to bed? Don't let my space lag keep you up until the wee hours."

"I'll be up a while, yet," The lucid Listener combed his fingers back through his brown hair and ordered, "Raktajino, black, strong."

"Can you get some warm water for me? I'll give Iko his formula while we chat then," Kallay said reaching into the shoulder bag and pulling out a small prepped bottle with formula in the bottom.

The tall El-Aurian approached with his coffee in one hand and water in the other. He watched as Kallay cared for Iko, the child of human and Trill parents showed a loving, nurturing side typically unsuitable in Intel agents but welcome to Omen, here and now. He watched as Kallay worked and thought about the young officer's background.

"I saw in your jacket that you specialized in analysis and encryption." He stepped closer. "Unless I miss my guess that makes you excellent at reading patterns in abstract phenomena like waveforms, crowds," and he smiled, "waves."

Kallay grinned, nodding, “Found I had a knack when surfing, I could predict the waves based on their patterns.”

"Tell me more," Omen looked on with rapt interest.

"Well the others would have to kinda guess, you only know so much about a wave and how it will be like the others, I could just watch and see the patterns," Kallay said, "In school the math just all... made sense." He shrugged, "Some people can sing or paint, I can surf."

"What drew you to intelligence work?" Omen favored the intriguing intel agent with a studious gaze. "Your jacket and what I've seen of your personality from our meeting suggests a poor fit."

"They approached me," Kallay explained, "I had an aptitude for analysis and code breaking, but more than that I was personable, the assets liked working with me so they were willing to work closer with me then they would a normal handler. I enjoyed the work though it was sometimes isolating."

"A man gives away a lot in his words, in his gestures and body language," The enigmatic El-Aurian smiled at Iko, "Who he picks for friends."

Green eyes fixed on Kallay, "An affable and charming personality is unsuitable for handler work because of isolation. Contact with the assets is kept to a minimum in order to maintain security so again, a charming and affable personality is a poor fit."

He frowned in thought. "Pure code processors are typically kept at bases where they have full access to encryption and decryption labs, as well as access to command staff able to act quickly on any intel gained. They get to have lives and families unlike agents in the field."

The exacting exec rubbed his chin, still studying the flecks of color in Kallay's eyes, willing his mind to focus on the task at hand and not Kallay's scent. As he looked genetic models formed in a side pocket or sliver of his thoughts. He mapped predispositions and compared them with current analysis.

He targeted his mind on threat assessment and plausibility of Kallay's history in intel. What he received were detailed maps of physiology. Distractingly detailed internal maps of physiology. Sometimes it sucked being able to undress a man with his eyes.

The mischievous imp in his consciousness chuckled throatily. What's the use of having it if you don't enjoy it?

Bottom line, Yamparti's chemophores, his voiceprint, and his aura matched. He told the truth as he understood it. Given the how tightly they matched Omen postulated that Kallay was given to a habit of truthfulness.

This man had no business in the field as an intel agent. He possessed courage in abundance but he also possessed a crippling flaw for a spook - integrity. From what Omen saw in those fascinating half-Trill eyes during the few seconds of silence between them, Yamparti was also a man of deep feelings.

--TBC--

 

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