Assistant to the specialist in charge of a particular task aboard a ship - answers to Masters
Master of a particular specialty aboard a ship. Within the Avalonian Imperial Navy, this is an official rank as well as a rating, descending from sailing tradition. Such specialties include Masters (ie. Sailmaster, Master-at-Arms, Purser), Boatswain , Chiurgeon , Carpenter , and so forth. They are the lowest-ranking rating (enlisted sailor) permitted to command any type of vessel. A Master's Mate is a Warrant Officer, meaning that they have achieved a position of authority through a technical specialty that demands recognition, as opposed to a Commission from the Crown. The Warrant Officers are further divided into Wardroom Warrant Officers, who mess with the junior commissioned officers of the crew, and the Standing Warrant Officers who, unlike most of the crew, stay with the ship even when it is out of commission, and continue to receive full pay through the Royal Dockyard. For more information, see Master.
Not only must a Master's Mate have familiarity with sailing, they must have an intimate knowledge of a particular technical specialty.
Master's Mates are distinguished by their knowledge, skill, and interest in a technical specialty aboardships.
A Master's Mate is selected by the Master aboardship, and they are recognized and warranted by the ship's Captain or other commander.
A Mate assists the Master in whichever field they are specialized in. So, a Boatswain's Mate ("Bo'sun's Mate") assists in crew management and discipline; a Chiurgeon's Mate assists the Chiurgeon in managing the health of the crew; a Sailmaster's Mate assists in organizing and supervising the sail crews and making up a duty roster; the Carpenter's Mate assists with managing ship maintenance and repair; the Mate of the official "Master" of a crew assists with making up the watch schedule; and so forth.
Master's Mates supervise the ratings below them. Authority is sometimes delegated to the Mates when a Master's tasks are numerous.
A Master's Mate is paid anywhere from 44 Galaxies (platinum), 2 Novae (gold), and 1 Starburst (silver) to 57 Galaxies per year, depending on seniority. Like all Naval starhands, their food and accommodations while on active duty are provided, but these benefits are not provided when their ship is not in active service, unless they are a Standing Warrant (Master's Mate or Carpenter's Mate).
Accoutrements & Equipment
Mates are issued a standard work uniform that includes navy-blue trousers, white dress shirt, sea boots, blue bandana and matching tie, a navy-blue vest, and a Starmetal Talisman in a brass belt buckle to provide them a short period of air and pressure, should they happen to fall overboard. They are also issued whatever basic equipment they might need for their tasks (surgeon's tools for Chiurgeon's Mates, carpentry tools for Carpenter's Mates, writing implements for Purser's Mates, whistle for Bo'sun's Mates, etc.) Mates with particular specialties might be issued a variation of the uniform more suited to their tasks. For example, a Chiurgeon's Mate and a Carpenter's Mate are both issued a navy blue shirt that is easier to keep visually clean, and a navy-blue coats with many pockets. These coats have different-coloured sleeves to distinguish them from junior commissioned officers. Bandanas and ties may also be of different colours (ie. white for Chiurgeons, silver-grey for Carpenters) to differentiate their specialty at a glance. Chiurgeons who are clergy may wear their holy symbols in place of their ties. The rank insignia of a Master's Mate is a gold anchor patch, worn at the top of the shirt sleeve or the epaulet of a coat.
Grounds for Removal/Dismissal
A Master's Mate can be dismissed from service for inappropriate conduct abusing their position, inappropriate behaviour, or dereliction of duty, through a court martial. They can also be dismissed due to unfitness for service due to physical or mental defect.
Don't forget that you can click on the blue compass on the left to access the Table of Contents at any time!
Want to read all of the Toy Soldier Saga fiction, even before the rest of the world does?Subscribe now!
Avalonian Imperial Navy Flag by Diane Morrison - ship by Aaron Siddall