"Crewman Terran reporting as requested, sir," I said.
"Ah, yes, Crewman Terran. Sit down."
As I sat, she pushed the tray over towards me.
"Put that back together will you?" she said casually and then she began to talk.
I did a quick survey of the puzzle and then began trying to reassemble the thing. It looked ever so complicated and I had no idea what the end result was supposed to look like. I couldn't ask either, not without interrupting the Commander, but I noticed that the outside edges of the puzzle had oxidised, ever so slightly, to a different colour. That helped.
"I understand you spent a great deal of time with an Engineering Team yesterday."
"You made quite an impression."
"Yes, Crewman, you did. Apparently you showed initiative, dedication to duty and good teamwork."
"Oh, thank you, sir," I said, still fumbling with the stupid puzzle.
"Tell me Crewman. You're a Junior Maintenance Technician; are you happy with that role?"
I looked up.
"As long as I'm busy and I'm doing something useful, sir, yes. Why?"
She smiled at me then.
"Yes, Lieutenant Bryant did mention your inquisitive nature."
"Don't be sorry. Without questions, one can never learn; although you can ask too many. Are you having a problem with that, Crewman?" she asked, and it was true. I had started to assemble the bits but not in one chunk. I had a number of bits on the go. The angles of the outside pieces suggested that there were too many bits to make just one object.
I looked up at the Commander and smiled.
"There are two puzzles here, aren't there," I said, not so much a question as a statement.
She smiled back at me and then pushed a datapad across the desk.
"Take that, Crewman and have a read of it. Come back to me tomorrow and tell me what you think."
I had now finished the puzzle and made two objects, a cube and a pyramid. With a good degree of satisfaction, I arranged them neatly on the tray for her and then took the datapad. I was then dismissed.
I was dying to know what was on it but my tummy was rumbling. I'd not had any breakfast yet, but I had a good three-quarters of an hour before my shift started so I headed to the galley for some grub. Having grabbed myself some toast and a cup of tea, I opened the datapad. It contained just one directory: the logs of Captain James T Kirk's first five-year mission on the U.S.S. Enterprise. It was a curious thing to give me to but then I remembered. Isn't that required reading at Starfleet Academy? Or am I reading too much into this?