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Meeting of Minds, pt. 1

Posted on Sun Aug 11th, 2019 @ 1:51pm by Cassandra Leblanc-Reed & Lieutenant Neenyo Tadez
Edited on on Sun Aug 11th, 2019 @ 2:06pm

Mission: For Whom The Bell Tolls
Location: Diplomatic Offices
Timeline: MD3, shortly before 1400

Cassie had only had time for a quick lunch after her meeting with the Captain; it had run longer than anticipated, but was nonetheless pleasant. She got to know the Commanding Officer a little better, and also got the feeling that she had enjoyed the momentary change of pace.

She arrived at the diplomatic offices minutes before her scheduled appointment and was greeted by a young yeoman. "Good afternoon, Miss Leblanc-Reed, I presume. I'll inform the Lieutenant of you arrival," she said upon Cassie’s arrival.

"Thank you," Cassie responded, as she sat on a plush grey couch.

Tadez came out from his office as the light signal from Jennifer caught his attention and he entered the outer office. The person scheduled was punctual: that is a good sign, so Tadez went to meet her formally.

"Miss Leblanc-Reed," Tadez offered a smile. "I am Chief Diplomat Tadez, it is a pleasure to meet you." He bowed slightly. "I have some fresh rea and raktajino in my office if you would like to talk somewhere more comfortable?"

"The pleasure is all mine," Cassie responded. "A raktajino would be nice, thank you. After you." She followed the lieutenant into the office and waited until he was seated to sit on one of the chair facing him.

Taking the time to fix the raktajino for both of them before taking the chair, he also smiled as he steepled his fingers as he evaluated the woman. "I hope it is to your liking?” he asked, but quickly went to the point of the matter. "How much of our mission do you know?" he asked as it seemed a good common point.

"I have been briefed, however summarily, slightly before I left Earth. I managed to do some research when I arrived at the Fleet Yards, but as you know, sometimes information isn't as forthcoming as one would like. As I understand it, there's a trade route dispute between the three leading governments of the Claddin Empire? And that the Crustillians, I believe, have asked the Federation to act as mediator during the proceedings?" she asked, taking a sip of her raktajino. Delicious, as raktajino is wont to be, but she didn't show any outward sign of it.

"You are correct on who is pushing for the mediation," Tadez gave her and reach for his cup. "They are a crab-like race and very old in that sector; you might say the humanoids are catching up," he responded. "I have also been to ask Intel if there are any other factors that they know not in the standard packages, but the answer, thus far, is not much. I have taken the effort to contact the Crustillians and talk to their representative."

"I only have limited information on the issue and the Empire itself. I was hoping you had a more complete package, so that we could arrive there as prepared as possible," she explained. If there was one thing she hated, it was a lack of preparation: it could potentially spell disaster.

"To be simple — and I will forward you the package, as limited as it is — I am still getting information on the humanoids, the Felev and the Bordere, which are two of the three primary races. It is mostly about trade routes and who gets what. It’s typical for these races to cause conflict to get what they desire," Tadez surmised.
"The important thing is the Crustillians; they are basically in charge of the trade routes, in a manner of speaking. They are similar to the Ferengi in that they believe in trade. They’re not to be thought of in the same light as the Ferengi, but their system is what can be a part of the problem. The Crustillians are simple minded, but want to trade resources and it must be amicable to both parties according to their beliefs. They are based upon the human barter system: you trade what you have for what the other needs. Each deal is weighed and amounts based upon the requirements at that time," Tadez explained. "The catch is with a barter there is no standard for exchange. Latinum is the medium used to 'barter' with people you do not know, in a most basic sense."

"Bartering can make sense on a local scale, but is untenable in the context of import-export... What do the two other civilizations think of this? At least one of them must have expressed some concern towards the Crustillian system," Cassie speculated.

"I do not have the great details, yet the initial request for our help came from the disputing among the trade aspect of the Empire's resources. The humanoids seem to be in conflict regarding which race controls which route. This leads in with the Empire being young and still learning to play nice among the aligned planets," he said calmly.

"This can become a volatile situation. As we know, there are trade issues involved and thus any financial dispute can go in many directions. We need to help guide them in that venue, as a catalyst to aiding them with what could be larger issues, as you can see. Using money as a first step might be the best tactic in the negotiations, help stabilize trade and the rest can fall into place?"

"Introducing currency would indeed help standardize the value of traded goods. It would also mean changing at least one planet's whole economic system, which could take years to implement correctly." Cassie commented. "Although — and that would require the Crustillians, the Felev, and the Bordere to actually work in tandem — a currency common to the Empire may help facilitate things. Regarding trade routes, is there an official trade agreement in place, with outlined routes?"

"More of a loose agreement by the three planets that form the governing body for the Empire, two of which are in some degree of personal conflict. It would seem that having a common goal to work towards that is mutually beneficial is a good platform to work with," Tadez explained.

"The fact that everyone keeps thinking the Crustillians are backwards, in a manner of speaking, might be wrong. Money, by definition, is a form of barter system if one looks it up. The Crusitillians seek to do business, trade resources. Even the Federation does not have its own currency: it works with trade agreements. Have you ever heard of the term 'barter for a better price'? Money is a medium and negotiations on how much money, latinum or other resource, is all a form of barter. The Crustillians learn what is valued among those they trade with and act accordingly. They use their resources as currency; they have limited minerals but foodstuffs and other resources are abundant. Even the Ferengi barter: they just insist on their form of exchange — Latinum — and trading with a Ferengi requires it. The Federation is not so narrow minded actually, so the Crustillians need to put a value or suggested price for any trade agreement. Isn't money always the foundation on which you build an empire?"

To be continued...

Lieutenant Neenyo Tadez
Chief Diplomatic Officer

Cassandra Leblanc-Reed
Diplomatic Officer


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