:: A deep pulse of bass music opens up with a graphic of turbolift flashes over the screen before the screen lights raise up to focus in on Vulcan man seated in a chair with a pair of ceramic coffee mugs on a small table between his chair and the as of yet off screen occupied one. ::
Sopek: Hello and Greetings. My name is Sopek and it is time once more for an installment of The Lower Decks. Where we leave behind the center chair and big office and go down below to speak with the crew of the vessels and bases in Starfleet. ::He shifts slightly to meet the changing camera and waves a hand to the other chair.:: Tonight’s guest is Lieutenant Brayden Jorey. He is the Chief Tactical Officer and Chief of Security on the USS Tiger-A. Good Evening Lieutenant.
Jorey: Such a pleasure to speak with you, Mr. Sopek. ::Jorey spoke slowly and offered a warm smile.::
Sopek: I understand you have just recently been promoted to full Lieutenant. It must be exciting, yes?
Jorey: It’s always a blessing to be recognized by your superiors. ::He said nodding his head slightly. The hint of a devious smirk flickered in his eyes.:: The only one more pleased than I would be my grandmother.
Sopek: You’re also the Commander of the Air Group on the Tiger. What can you tell us about that position?
Jorey: I can tell you that I have a lot of help. ::He said honestly.:: On the Tiger, the Independence Flight is made up entirely of Starfleet officers who volunteer during their off-duty time. They are a passionate, fearless, and incredibly dedicated group of people. It’s definitely a different model than having a dedicated marine unit, but one that I and the Tiger are going to make sure succeeds.
::Jorey smiled confidently and waited patiently for Sopek to speak up.::
Sopek: So your grandmother takes an interest in your career?
Jorey: Ha! ::Jorey always found humour in the Vulcan tendency to understate the obvious.:: I’m a Betazoid son of the noble House of Perseverance and Guardian of the Sacred Eyes of Kylaron. ::He leaned in and pretended as though he was telling a secret just between the two of them.:: Betazoid children understand that they are only the main character in their story, but most of the time, their family get’s to be the writer, director, and producer.
Sopek: Most interesting. And beyond leading the informal marine unit, what do you like to do to unwind?
Jorey: I enjoy many things. Meditation, training, martial arts, fashion, pampering myself… ::Jorey sat further back into his chair as he thought deeper.:: Most off all, I enjoy improving myself and my environment. I like to make sure that everyone feels comfortable, included, and essential. It’s the most important thing. ::Jorey leaned forward, his eyes signally revery.:: A very famous Betazoid woman once said, “The great secret is not the variety of life, it’s the variety of us.” ::Jorey sat back up, smiled and straighten his back.:: The best way for me to unwind is by enjoying such variety on the Tiger.
Sopek: A most profound motto to live by. Do you find yourself looking toward the center chair someday as a way to further the variety in your life?
Jorey: I think Fleet Captain Riley fills the chair nicely. ::Jorey said playfully.:: Besides, I’ve just been made responsible for three departments, my hands are full. But someday, I would love to be captain. It’s been that way since I was a little boy. ::Jorey became visibly amused by the memories.:: When we were kids, I always played the captain and forced my older brother to be my number one.
Sopek: Has your variety led you to find anyone special to share your search with?
Jorey: There have been some. ::Jorey leaned in toward to the host to offer a better look at the devious, yet inviting grin on his face.:: Are you available? ::Jorey paused for only a moment, before leaning back into his chair in lighthearted laughter.:: You Vulcan’s are so adorable. In truth, I’m more focused on my career as of late. However, I’m not one to ignore my own desires and turn away passion if it presents itself.
::Jorey let the comment stand undefined, left unknown if it was a general statement or more specifically directed to Sopek. He smiled sweetly, seemingly innocent.::
Sopek: ::Seemingly unfazed he continued his questions.:: You also have a brother in Starfleet. Is there any competition between siblings?
Jorey: Dylan is in medicine. I think for him it’s always been about healing and helping people. ::Jorey took a moment to choose his words carefully.:: I have an ambitious warrior’s spirit. My inspiration may be less altruistic but it still pushes me to do good, to do better. We were never that competitive with each other growing up… ::Jorey smirked with a raised eyebrow.:: but, I have to admit I’m looking forward to having my big brother call me Lieutenant.
Sopek: A joy most siblings would enjoy I’m sure. What prompted your change from Helm to Tactical and Security?
Jorey: I was a tactical major at the academy, minors in helm and intelligence. ::Jorey’s eyes widened slightly and his back straightened.::I am a Tassa’Akai mystic, have been training since I was a child. The gods have blessed me with a warrior’s spirit to protect peace, joy and love from the darkness. ::Jorey relaxed and sunk back into his chair.:: I think the new position is a much better fit for my talents and am really excited and grateful Fleet Captain Riley has afforded me the opportunity.
Sopek: Hopefully you will blossom into your new position. Can you tell us about being a Tassa’Akai mystic?
Jorey: Surely. ::He said with a certain whisper of joyous breath.:: My training was always a family affair. It began when I was very young, my grandfather started me on the path. My mother was also a great teacher while we were away from Betazed on Federation ships. After my grandfather’s passing at the Battle of Betazed, my grandmother continued to guide me. ::It was clear on Jorey’s face that he was becoming nostalgic.:: It was always something that kept me close to my grandfather. When I was 20, I completed the trials on Betazed with the masters and was granted mystic status. Someday, I will train others in the path and when one of them completes the trials I will be regarded as a master.
Sopek: Truly interesting. Do you hope to continue with the family tradition then?
Jorey: Is there a choice? ::He said quickly through laughter.:: Two things: First, tradition and family are synonymous in Betazoid culture. Second, once you have dedicated yourself to the path there is no going back or continuing. There are pre-established trails to follow or perhaps you make your own. But either way, with one’s death is at the end of the path, you have no choice but to find your way there.
Sopek: Can you tell us a little about some of the more memorable missions you have been a part of?
Jorey: Of course! ::Jorey gestured flamboyantly with his hands. He turned to face the camera with a raised eyebrow.:: Something for your more adventurous viewers? ::Jorey leaned back into his chair and focused on Sopek.:: Well the Tiger was on its way to New France to pick up some medical supplies for an emergency on Triceblessed, but along the way we encountered a gaseous entity. It’s started feeding itself on the ship’s power systems and began to try and please the crew by using the replicators and holoemiters to make the crew’s desires come to life. Eventually, I realized that the entity was sentient, however, it felt like an animal. ::Jorey motioned his hands about his head.:: It was all passions, aggressions, ego, and instinct.
Sopek: Very interesting. What made you join Starfleet?
Jorey: Well, Mr. Vulcan the truth is one of the reasons I dreamed of being in Starfleet was to make first contact with a new species. Unfortunately, it was like making first contact with a Targ. Although I know, Ensign Azin, who I believe is now on the Excalibur, would disagree with me and surely have a look of disdain ready for me. ::Jorey laughed at the thought.:: Oh, Ensign Azin. I would wish him luck on his new ship, but I think that perhaps it’s the Excalibur that will need luck with him. ::Jorey smiled and seemed nostalgic.:: He is already missed on the Tiger. Anyway, long story short – we upset the beast and it sent the Tiger crashing into the deep oceans of an O class planet. Hopefully, my next first contact will go a little better.
Sopek: Can you share with us a phrase or motto that helps you through your day? A mantra that keeps you going when times are hard?
Jorey: Hmmm… ::Jorey sat back in his chair deep in thought.:: Well, it’s more of a philosophy than a mantra, I suppose, but I simply follow what the gods have always taught us. ::He leaned back in.:: Find passion and love in everything. You will find peace and live a joyous and inspired life. ::He raised an eyebrow at Sopek.:: It’s not Logic, ::Jorey smiled.:: But it seems to work wonders for me.
Sopek: Thank you for taking the time to speak with me today. You’ve been very insightful and I wish you the best of luck.
Jorey: Of course, Mr. Sopek! ::He exclaimed in a gracious tone.:: Perhaps, you’ll have me back again when I surely make Captain. ::He winked at the man across from him and laughed softly as he leaned back into his chair.::
Brayden Jorey graduated from the Academy and was assigned to the USS Tiger-A on stardate 238912.15 as a Helm Officer. Over his career on the Tiger he has been the CAG (Commander – Air Group) of the Independence Flight, the Chief of Secuirity, and the Chief Tactical Officer. With the decommissioning of the USS Tiger-A, he has recently been assigned to the USS Gemini as the Chief of Security. The author of Brayden Jorey hails from Toronto, Canada. He has a degree in Psychology & Sociology and a Master’s degree in Applied Social Research. He is a personal trainer, music teacher, and is a fitness, personal, and couples counsellor. He enjoys beach volleyball, strength training, Aikido, video games, ‘end of the world’ movies and crazy nights out on the town.