SIM:Nicholotti Down to Business
((Banquet Hall, Starbase 118))
::With the last bite complete, he sat listening to random conversations. These were the moments that you learn to appreciate your crew even more. Day in and day out they performed their duties and never held anything back. They fought to live for moments like these. Even the cynical smiles were still smiles. He thought back of all the crewmates he had over the years. He missed many of them, but made sure to look back and never forget. The ones that were no longer alive made sacrifices he would fight to protect for the rest of his life. Sometimes, he missed the ones that were still alive even more. He glanced over to Kali, happy to see her once again. If it did not hold back her career, he would have taken her with him when he left. Standing up, he grabbed the nearest piece of silverware and tapped it a few times against his water glass. As everyone quieted down, he picked it up and took a sip before speaking.::
Jaxx: It is great to be here with you all tonight. I want to thank you for your hospitality, ::looking to David:: and your great food. I also want to thank each of you for coming...::smirking:: though it is not like you had a choice. ::chuckling slightly:: I am sure the rumors have been flying around...on the way to dinner I overheard a crewman say we were here to check security for the President's upcoming visit. The deities only know what else is circulating.
::He paused for a moment and took another sip.::
Jaxx: Whatever is going on outside of this station can wait until tomorrow. Enjoy tonight, for you never know when you will have another one. ::turning to look at Ben:: Our lives matter, and they matter to more than just us and StarFleet. Many officers get married, have kids...and it is never easy. Sometimes those officers are faced with choices that not only affected their lives, but those of their families. Ben Walker chose to resign his commission to be with his family. There is nothing more commendable than that. Eventually, he made the choice to come back to StarFleet. The former Captain was reinstated at the rank of Lieutenant Commander. In some circles, this was thought to be unacceptable. Each ship, or station for that matter, has a crew that functions like a family and it is the highest priority. Why should that change when you do not wear the uniform? ::looking at Ben once more:: Ben, will you join me?
::Jaxx waited a moment for Ben to stand up and take a step over. Jaxx realized his job was not easy. The man had already been pipped as a Captain, yet here he was being pipped a Commander once more. His time away from StarFleet should not have mattered, yet it was held against him. He yearned to serve, and he did so with distinction.::
Jaxx: Lieutenant Commander Walker, you are hereby promoted to the rank of full Commander oO Again Oo, with all rights and privileges that accompany said rank. ::extending his hand:: Congratulations.
::Jaxx gave the man another moment to return to his seat. It felt kind of silly to be promoting the man, but he is the only man Jaxx knew that could say he earned his Commander pips twice. One day the wrong would be fully righted and he would earn back his fourth pip. When that happened, Jaxx would be in line to attend that dinner as well. After Ben was seated, he continued to speak.::
Jaxx: Starbase 118 has always been a beacon shining into the darkness of space. A beacon of strength, a beacon of hope, and a beacon of inspiration. When I turned over command of this station, I gave it willingly to a person that exuded those precise qualities. Commander Nicholotti ::glancing to Kali:: is one the brightest officers I have ever served with in my entire career. She is a rock, even when she does not want to be. When things crumble around her, she remains. When the darkness comes to devour everything else, she shines. Without her courage, and undying sacrifices, the Federation would not be what it is. I owe my life to her. During an away mission, I was unaware that I was in the sights of a Hirogen blade. In one swift move, she put herself between that blade and me. That blade cost her the heart in her chest. But it lives on in spirit. There may be machinery pumping blood through her veins, but to this day she has the biggest heart I have ever seen. She gives relentlessly, she inspires everyone every single day. Just like the station she commands, she is a guiding beacon calling out to those of us in the darkness. ::smiling at Kali, doing all he could to keep the tears from building in his dark eyes:: Commander Nicholotti, it is with honor...and more pride than you can imagine, that you are hereby promoted to the rank of Captain. May you continue to serve as inspiration for us all, to be better than we can even imagine.
::Jaxx smiled as she stood, and he took great pleasure in placing the fourth pip on her collar. He was able to maintain his composure, but only slightly. He thought of the green Marine, fresh out of the academy that developed into the woman she was today. She did it all by herself, and he was honored to be along for the ride. Serving with her as long as he did only made him better. If she could inspire the smart mouthed man from Betazed to strive to be better, imagine what she could do for others. Once she was pipped, he glanced down to her collar and let it sink in. It was one of those times he wished she was empathic and could sense how proud he was of her. There were no words that could convey those feelings, and if he tried it would only insult them.::
Jaxx: Ladies and Gentlemen...Captain Kalianna Nicholotti!
Captain Andrus Jaxx
USS Apollo, NCC-71669
Return to Kalianna Nicholotti.