"Sir?" Florence appeared at his elbow in the loading bay. "We have embarkation starting in five. Time to smarten up and impress the masses."
"Mm," Jason replied, watching as his hold was rapidly emptied of its cargo. "I'll be right there."
"Of course you will, sir. And I'll just wait here for you."
"Commander Zelenkar, I'm not going to stand you or our passengers up," Jason gently chided, knowing what she was thinking.
"It will mean a lot to them to be personally greeted," she said unrepentantly. "I'm only staying in order to take over if something goes wrong and you're unavoidably detained or something like that."
Jason stared flatly at his first officer. "You're coming very close to implying dereliction of duty on my part, Commander."
"That isn't at all my intent, sir. I merely wish to facilitate the execution of your many duties as best I can," Florence said with a perfectly straight face. "That includes me being on hand to assist you in any way possible."
Jason glanced down at his chrono. "I should probably leave now if I'm going to get to the doors on time." Florence just kept looking attentive. "Thank you."
"My pleasure, sir. I'll finish things up here."
"When you're done, meet me in the bridge. Ceyla's control tower is opening the shields for us in forty-five minutes, and we don't want to be late."