“Trumbull vs. Janseen”
(or “Meet …€Â˜the Rhino'”)
JDL: Captain Janseen & Processor Trumbull
Captain Rhea Janseen sighed as she looked over the words on the PADD that Ensign Jileel, her newest aide, had just handed her. She laid the PADD on her desk and rubbed her temples. This is not what I need right now.
“Avin,” the commandant said, tapping on the comm unit on her desk, calling Jileel, “Have Professor Trumbull come to my office immediately,”
“The professor has a class scheduled, Sir,” Jileel replied over the comm.
“Immediately, Ensign,” Janseen urged. “Have him cancel for today, or find someone to cover for him. Hell! You go cover for him, I don't care! I want him here ASAP.”
“Aye, ma'am,” came the young man's voice and the comm link was closed.
Arliss Trumbull was having the students in his Introduction to Volcanology class create their very own working volcano models. He knew that most of the cadets were not amused, feeling the assignment was beneath them. When his back was turned, he heard one of his students remark that Professor Trumbull should be named "Professor Fullofbull" and another mumbled "The old coot needs to go back to judging the fourth grade science fair, not teaching academy cadets." Arliss just smiled and nodded as he walked around the room examining their works in progress.
Avin Jileel had tried comming Trumbull as ordered but the man hadn't answered, so he hurried to the Professor's classroom, intending to do exactly what Dean Janseen had suggested. Taking over the class and sending Trumbull to the dean. He stopped at the door, watching the arts and crafts projects being constructed by the cadets and unsure just what was supposed to be going on in the classroom.
"If you're one of my cadets, you're late." Trumbull announced. "Don't stand their lollygagging, come in, find a partner for today and get caught up."
The young ensign's golden skin turned a shade of brown, showing his embarrassment. He squared his shoulders, shaking it off. "I'm not a student Professor Trumbull, I've been sent to summon you to the Dean's office. Now. I'll take care of the remainder of the class."
"OH! Well, this is a switch! A professor being sent to the principal's office instead of a student! I suppose I should hurry on then, it must be important." He looked at the aide. "Take good care of them, they're prone to erupting at any time...." He said aloud, then leaned closer and whispered. "Both the volcanoes and the cadets."
He grabbed his ubiquitous stack of PADDS and rushed to the Dean's office as ordered.
Arliss activated the door chime outside Dean Janseen's office and then entered without an invitation.
"Hello, hello, hello!!!" He said cheerily, approaching the dean's desk and seating himself in one of the chairs across from her. "You wanted to see me ma'am?"
Rhea Janseen's mouth hung open. She had been about to usher whomever rang the chime in, and was totally surprised by the whirlwind that entered her office. She shouldn't have been surprised though. Admiral Lindross had cautioned her to Trumbull's exuberant ways when she recommended the professor's appointment to the academy's staff. “He's a bit strange, but an excellent instructor,” the admiral had said.
The commandant also wondered where Ensign Jileel was. The “Golden Boy,” as the other administration staff members were calling him, would usually be protesting and apologizing for the barging in. Rhea briefly wondered if the young man had taken he suggestion of taking over Trumbull's class literally.
Focusing again on Trumbull, Janseen started, “Two days ago, did you flood your classroom with…€… “ She had to look again at the PADD. “Fuel-laden water, almost drowning several students?”
The man grinned and laughed as he dropped his pile of PADDs onto Janseen's desk with a clatter. "Yes, I did." He agreed nodding. "'Water, water every where, nor any drop to drink.'...." He shouted gesticulating wildly with his arms. "Or, at least I wouldn't have advised drinking it! Nasty stuff in that water! Just nasty!" He chuckled again and continued speaking not letting Janseen get in a word. "Let. Me. Guess. Someone complained." He rolled his eyes melodramatically.
“Yes, Professor,” Janseen confirmed, “I have received a formal complaint from a cadet's parents. Now, normally I would pretty much dismiss the complaint because we do have to prepare cadets for any situation and sometimes they do get hurt, but…€…
“I reviewed the data recordings for that day. You didn't have the transporter synced with your program to pull a cadet out if they…€…. Succumbed to the situation you set up. You cannot drown our cadets, Professor! And what was the purpose of the fuel?”
"I would never drown my cadets. I wouldn't even drown one of them, not even Cadet Dresden. But I most certainly will continue to plunge each and every one of them into terrifying, unpredictable situations of a random nature. And I won't apologize for doing so. Is there anything else Dean? IF not, there is something I'd like to speak with you about."
“I am not done yet,” Captain Janseen told Trumbull. He was one defiant sentence away from finding out why some of the cadets refer to her as “the Rhino.” “First off, these are my cadets. If I tell you to apologize you will apologize. Next up, you will from this point forward submit a full lesson plan, and you will include all props or holographic simulations you plan to use in your lessons. If you find these terms unacceptable, Professor,…€… “ Rhea raised her arm and pointed out the window. “…€… the gate is that way, be nice to the security patrol as you leave.”
Trumbull dropped his exaggerated aspect. "Well, this has become a rather tense meeting. Dean Janseen, you are correct, the transporter was not synced but my...your cadets were not in danger of anything other than getting a bit wet." He reached over and selected a PADD from the ones he had dumped on her desk, then held it out to her. "After I failed to account for the possibility that one or more cadets would actually remove props from the classroom, I employed a team of skilled programmers to ensure that future holo-programs have layers of redundant safeguards. All of the information and their credentials, as well as plans for several more classes, are on this PADD."
Professor Trumbull's shift in mood, caused an immediate softening of Janseen's own mood. She, however, maintained a glare on the professor as he spoke. She accepted the PADD and looked over the data. She was pleased to see the level of technology employed in each of the holo-programs. Janseen also noted that when Trumbull had been submerged, he had been beamed out and replaced by a holo-program in the classroom, while the Professor and medical personnel observed from a control room nearby. She handed it back to Trumbull.
“Professor,” she said, “I believe you and I are in sync. Now, what is on your mind?”
"Before I go into that, I would like to point out that not every class is designed to be so dramatic. But in the instances in which the scenarios presented do tend toward being more theatrical in nature, it's imperative that all the cadets believe 100% that there is potential for real danger and serious bodily harm to themselves and their classmates." The professor's voice shifted again, his eyes had a far-away look to them. "It's my firm belief that there is no way to truly TEACH survival. Sure, I could hand the cadets a textPADD full of examples of how to make it through the one thousand excellent scenarios covered and in a few years, the first emergency situation which any given ensign encounters out there....would be the example which was edited out or unanticipated. So, the survival class is designed to facilitate development the cadet's survival instinct, to ensure they can recognize an emergency, to push aside their fears and emotions and remain calm so that they can quickly assess the situation and take decisive action. More excellent officers have died from indecision during a crisis than from any other factors." Trumbull dabbed his eyes. "I can become a bit overwrought when considering the potential negative consequences if our cadets cannot grasp the idea survival can't be taught but instead must be learned." He shook his head sadly. "Look at me, I forgot that I wanted to ask you about the possibility of hosting a live demonstration of ancient Japanese swordfighting. Mr. Nogura is well-versed in the specifics and is in contact with a group of historic re-enactors, two of whom check out. If you give the go-ahead, I'll contact them to arrange as schedule." He picked up another PADD. "This one has Chet's outline of how such an event would proceed, what would be needed from us and the credentials of the proposed sword masters. All for your review, when you have the time of course." Trumbull stood as if to leave. "And Dean, I won't apologize to Cadet Dresden. Even if ordered. But I will speak with her parents and explain the purpose of the class if you'd like me to do so." Trumbull collected up his remaining PADDs "If I hurry, I can catch the last few minutes of today's class." He chuckled. "It's about to get very very messy in the classroom and your aide is not dressed for playing in lava."
“FYI, Professor,” Janseen stated. “It is customary to await being dismissed before you decide to leave. I will look this proposal over and you are dismissed.”
After Trumbull had left her office, Captain Janseen had started to look over the proposal for this sword fighting demonstration. Her eyes suddenly flew open wide and she tossed the PADD on her desk and started for the door. “Did he say, …€Â˜lava?'”