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 Post subject: Re: Episode 37: Loose Ends/Derelict
PostPosted: Mon Oct 12, 2015 12:28 pm 
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Main Gym
Day 286, Mid-morning


Cpl. Tom Cody stepped into the boxing ring, geared up for sparing. He smiled at his opponent in the other corner, "So buddy, are we ready to take our frustrations on each other?"

Frankie Laffitte stared at Cody a moment, then growled quietly to himself, "You got no idea, buddy." He slipped his mouthguard between his teeth, biting into it savagely.

Gunnery Sergeant Razorski was close enough to Laffitte to hear what he'd said, even if Cody hadn't heard it. She gave Laffitte a level expressionless look and stepped into the center of the ring. "You know the rules, boys. Keep it clean." Her last remark was aimed mostly at Laffitte, but she included Cody in her gaze and then gestured for them to begin.

"Nothin' to worry about from me, sir," Cody said as he started to put in his mouthpiece. "Just boys being boys in the ring. Lets dance..."

At Razor's gesture, Frankie charged into the center of the ring, his fists up, starting to swing even before Cody was in arm's length. Cody saw it coming, and the punch barely grazed the side of his face as he paused for a split second to let it go by. Frankie stepped in closer, aiming for Cody's body.

It was at this moment Tom landed a well-placed shot across the chin. He could tell something was amiss, so Tom gave a friendly piece of advice, "Keep your guard up, buddy...you made that too easy."

Frankie growled something and danced back, keeping his hands up, then he moved in closer again, feinting with his left, then jabbing with his right. When Cody blocked the jab, Laffitte landed an uppercut under Cody's jaw.

Tom stumbled a little from the well placed punch. It was far from putting Cody on the mat, but he was impressed with the move. Tom smiled at his opponent, "That's the way to do it. Nice shot to my face, bud!"

"I'm not your buddy!" Frankie snapped, swinging again but missing as Cody dodged.

Cody was surprised by the mood-change of his partner. Still, Cody sent a shot into Frankie's ribs and continued the verbal joust. "Don't lose focus, Frankie...that was sloppy and we both know it. Just focus...everyone in the room knows you have better aim that that. You know half the room would love to see my ass on the mat because they lost cubits due to me in the old days."

Cody's words ignited Laffitte's fury. He charged in close to his opponent, fists pummeling. He didn't feel Cody's return punches as he wildly swung and made contact with any part of Cody's body. "I'll... show... you... aim," he panted. His head down, he got Cody in a clinch and pounded on him.

"Laffitte!" Razorski had been watching the match closely, and hadn't liked Frankie's attitude from the beginning. She stepped closer, her voice loud and hard, snapping, "Break it up! Back off, Laffitte, back off!"

The infuriated man seemed not to hear, continuing his assault. There was nothing of a skilled boxing match left, except on Cody's part. He was adeptly blocking Laffitte's swinging fists, returning punches the best he could, but he realized that this had turned into more than a friendly sparring session.

"Hey, we're on the same team here and this is sparring." Cody said as Laffitte went out of control. "Back off before you get in trouble."

Tom could tell his words were having no effect. He tried to think of ways to get his friend to calm down, but knew he was running out of options. If Frankie keeps this up, I'm going to have to do something that will hurt him more than me...and we both might be in the brig because of it.

When Laffitte started hitting at Cody's kidneys, the Gunnery Sergeant had had enough. She stepped in and hooked her arm under Laffitte's and threw him back and down to the mats. She stood over him and said, "Don't get up, Laffitte."

He didn't listen, scrambling to his feet, and he drew his right fist back. Before he could unleash the punch, Razorski hit him bare-handed with the flat of her fist in the center of his chest, knocking him on his back. He laid there gasping for breath.

Razorski looked over at Cody. "You better get lost, Corporal," she said calmly.

Although Tom Cody was fighting every ounce of his instincts to rip off his gloves and lay into Laffitte, he did as he was told. As he left the gym, Cody verbally popped off as his gloves hit the floor near the door. "Really?! That playground banter made you flip? People are right...you're losing it!"

Tom left the room, shaking his head in anger...and disappointment in Frankie. They're all right...something is going wrong with him.

As Cody left the ring, Laffitte got to his feet. Razorski faced him and said in a steely voice, "It's over, Laffitte."

Laffitte's eyes followed Cody a moment, then he looked back at the Gunnery Sergeant. She could tell by his expression that it wasn't over for him, and when he heard Cody's final words, he started to charge after him. Razorski was expecting it, and locked one arm across his chest, her other forearm at his throat. "It's over, Laffitte," she repeated in a flat voice, "and you're going to the brig."

For a moment it looked as if Frankie Laffitte was going to challenge Razorski, but then he stepped back, looking down. He spat out his mouthpiece and said expressionlessly, "Yes Gunnery Sergeant."

_________________
Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper, about budget cuts for the US’s intelligence agencies: "We're not going to do more with less and all these other clichés. . . . We will just simply have less capability."


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 Post subject: Re: Episode 37: Loose Ends/Derelict
PostPosted: Mon Oct 12, 2015 8:45 pm 
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Battlestar Libra
Commander's Office
Day 286 0759


DesChamps stood for a moment outside Admiral Rodrigues' office. In the breast pocket of his uniform was the data card the Admiral had given him the previous day. In his hand he held a single sheet of paper, the report he'd prepared on the likely whereabouts of the vessel Cortina. It was handwritten. He took a deep breath, then met the expectant eyes of the Marine guard.

"Captain Alain DesChamps, MILINT, here to see the Admiral," he said. "He is expecting me."

Moments later DesChamps was standing before the Admiral. "Reporting as ordered, sir," he said, laying the sheet of paper before Rodrigues. He reached into his pocket and withdrew the data card, laying it atop the report.

"At ease, Captain." Rodrigues set the data card aside and picked up the report, scanning the page quickly. "You prepared this by hand?"

"Yes, sir. I felt it appropriate to keep mention of the Cortina out of the official record."

Rodrigues' only reaction was to momentarily raise one eyebrow, then dip his head in a nod of acceptance. "Please make your report, then, Captain."

"Sir," DesChamps replied. "Loss of contact with the Cortina occurred three weeks into a planned six-month sweep of the Armistice Line. That gives us her last known location, but that was four-and-a-half years ago." DesChamps was aware he was repeating information the Admiral knew well, but it was necessary to establish the basis for his assumptions. The Admiral was giving him his full attention, so DesChamps continued.

"As we were attempting to evade the cylons, our initial vector away from the Colonies was also away from the Armistice Line. With no knowledge as to why the Cortina disappeared, or why she would be this far from her original patrol area, we are left to assume that she followed a direct course from her last known position, toward the Oasis system. Following standard Fleet jump protocols, she would have jumped system to system. There are two star systems within jump distance of Oasis, lying back along this projected course."

Rodrigues nodded. "Do you have any reason, Captain, to suspect one over the other as the Cortina's location?"

"Actually, Admiral, I don't think she's in either system. I think she's at Oasis."

Rodrigues regarded DesChamps thoughtfully. "Explain."

"Sir, it would have taken years for a non-FTL shuttle to traverse the distance from the nearest system to Oasis. There were thirteen sets of remains in that wreckage, but no sign of the supplies that would have been necessary for an extended trip. The amount of fuel that remained aboard also argues against an extended trip." DesChamps paused, watching the Admiral. "I cannot rule it out," he admitted, "but I find it very unlikely."

"That, Captain, is essentially the same conclusion I had reached," Rodrigues said. It was DesChamps turn to raise an eyebrow. Rodrigues took no note of DesChamps reaction. "Now, where in the Oasis system do you expect we'll find her?" the Admiral continued.

"I would defer to your judgment, and that of your ship commanders, on that matter," DesChamps stated.

"Yet you have suggested a location here," Rodrigues countered, lifting DesChamps' report.

"Yes, sir." DesChamps swallowed, then began speaking with measured words. "A solar system is a very large place to hide a comparatively tiny ship, especially one designed not to be found. The Cortina could have been in the asteroid field next to the Hades Horn and we would not have detected her."

"We don't know if she was concealing herself from the Oasis colony, or hiding from cylons... or if she was hiding at all." DesChamps scowled for a moment. "In my opinion, though, her most likely location is in the cometary halo, beyond the orbits of the outer planets. There she would be far from the EM interference of the star, with little risk of collision with an asteroid, yet with a great number of moving targets to mask her presence."


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 Post subject: Re: Episode 37: Loose Ends/Derelict
PostPosted: Tue Oct 13, 2015 8:58 am 
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MARDET Offices
Day 286, Late morning

(with Goldwolf)

She knew who it was in the hatch to her office before she looked up. "Yes, Corporal Cody, what can I do for you?" Gunnery Sergeant Razorski asked, looking up from the report she was working on.

"Before you give me the dress down I fully expect is coming and more than likely deserve, permission to speak freely, sir?"

Razorski raised an eyebrow and nodded, gesturing Cody to the seat in front of her desk.

"You've heard the talk, sir...a lot of us are wondering what the hell is going on with Frankie, sir. He hasn't been himself at all. We all know this war has taken a lot out of all of us. To a lot of us, he's diving off the deep end."

The Razor leaned back in her chair and sighed. "Yes, Corporal, you're right. He's having problems dealing with some things that have to do with his sniper duties. Dr. DeValera has been seeing him, but it may take some time before Laffitte will be able to work things out."

"Hmm...sniper duty coming back to haunt him. I wish I could say I didn't relate, but then I'd be lying. Still, back to the reason I'm here." Tom paused for a second and composed his thoughts. "There something you might not know, sir. Some have heard or seen where he's gone off on Mac...er...Chief MacLean, sir. Now, I only know her from reputation and eating with her and Frankie at a mess table. She seems like a good kid in my book. If she needed help of some sort, I'd be there. Others are a bit more protective of her...and we both know that could be bad for Frankie."

The Gunnery Sergeant absorbed what Corporal Cody told her. "If Chief MacLean needs help, I'm sure she'll ask for it," she finally said. "But I would expect any of my Marines would defend someone who needs assistance."

"Some have suggested going to the Chief and seeing what's going on. There are those who want to nominate me to do it."

"You?" Razorski asked. "You just told me that you don't know her very well. Why you?"

"Apparently, to those who think I'm the guy for the job, I know her well enough and have the personality to pull this off. Some in that big room outside this hatch seem to think if Frankie goes nuts, I won't have any gloves on. They figure that I'll put his ass on the deck...only in self defense, of course. By the way, Cpl. Fry's words, not mine, sir."

"Corporal Laffitte is currently in the brig," Razorski pointed out. "At any rate, 'putting him on the deck' will not solve the problem, and might just get you a trip to the brig."

"I happen to agree with you that it resolves nothing and ends in brig time. Like I said, she doesn't really know me except from meal time. Now call me crazy, I'm willing to go...but I want someone with me. Someone Mac knows and respects...as well as Frankie." Cody paused for a moment. "In short, 99.99% of the MarDet want to send you in as well. Can't say I disagree."

"What makes you think that the Chief wants or needs to explain what's going on with Laffitte? And why do you think I should go with you?" Razorski's tone held the hint of a warning.

"Like I said, she knows and respects you. Also, as Fry put it, it's like she's wanted to say something to someone but is a little too scared to. If she really wants to talk, you're one of the safe and good people to go to...I know I would. On another note, it's just not us in the MarDet seeing things. Mac's knuckle draggers and flyboys have noticed as well. Folks are starting to compare notes and come to the same conclusions. That's not good for Frankie."

Tom paused for a brief moment to let his words soak in. "Also sir, you are the only one Frankie really listens to anymore...plus the others figure that you're the only other person besides me who can take him down if he flips again. Sgt Dugan's words, not mine, sir. In the end, it couldn't hurt for someone to ask Mac 'hey, we can tell something's up and we're here if you need to talk', could it?"

The Gunnery Sergeant considered Corporal Cody's words for a moment. Finally, she said, "I'm not sure that going to the Chief is the best thing to do, but... if she's willing to talk to us, it could help." She gave Cody a level look. "But if she tells us to frak off, then we frak off and mind our own business."

"She tells us to frak off, I'm right behind you out the door."

_________________
"Times change...and so must I." - The Doctor, 'Time of the Doctor'


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 Post subject: Re: Episode 37: Loose Ends/Derelict
PostPosted: Sun Oct 18, 2015 5:37 am 
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Cylon-occupied Picon
Day 286


Marcus Alon walked down the last checkerboard-floor hall. Ahead, sunlight speared in through a double doorway, the doors themselves hanging askance from broken hinges. The final meters of the hall were littered with green leaves torn free by last night's storm, the black and white tiles wearing a sheen of rainwater. Beyond, the world seemed wet and bright and fresh.

For the last several hours he'd searched the facility, taking whatever he'd considered useful. There had been a modicum of food, though he avoided any that had been refrigerated - power had been off for several days, he estimated. He had no wish to subject his weakened body to food poisoning. Still, he'd found enough dry goods, assuaging his hunger with cereal from what had been a break room. He'd washed it down with distilled water from a cleaning closet, the liquid bland and distasteful but still satisfying his body's need for fluids.

On the lowest level he'd discovered a generator room. Footprints in the dust on the floor spoke of recent attention, and the smell of exhaust lingered faintly. The genny's fuel tank rang hollow when Marcus rapped his knuckles against it. Beside the door was a drum of diesel fuel, topped with a hand-cranked transfer pump. He'd considered refueling the generator, but after a few moments' reflection he'd decided he had no pressing need for electricity.

Now, as he walked out into the sunlit world, he hitched a canvas laundry bag higher onto his shoulder. He had stuffed the bag with whatever he'd found useful - a blanket, bags of dried beans, a plastic bowl, some silverware. Medical supplies had been in abundance within the building, and Marcus had fashioned a capable emergency kit . A pair of gallon water jugs hung from a length of canvas strapping across his other shoulder, their weight bumping against him as he left the facility.

Outside he found a paved drive, sided by what had once been well-kept grounds. The spring grass was now dark green and deep, neglect only just becoming evident where weeds rose up from wind-borne seeds. A low brick wall bordered the yard, and beyond that were scattered trees and a road. A bird scolded him from one of the pillars that marked where the drive split the brick wall, finally flying off a short distance as he approached. When he reached the road, he considered for a moment - left or right? He chose the direction that seemed a bit more downhill. He was walking better now, lifting his false foot off the ground with each step, but it was still tiring.

As he set off down the tree-lined road, behind him was an etched concrete sign set into the wall. It read: PERKINSTON HOSPITAL SYSTEM - CHAMBLESS MENTAL HEALTH FACILITY. Marcus took no note of it, and never looked back.


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 Post subject: Re: Episode 37: Loose Ends/Derelict
PostPosted: Fri Nov 13, 2015 10:12 pm 
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Mess Hall
Day 286, Lunchtime

(with Goldwolf)

It was the usual mystery meat and maybe the whitish stuff was pretend potatoes, but Mac was used to it. She ate out of habit, sitting at a table near the hatch, not particularly enjoying the meal, but not hating it, either. It had already been a long morning with a lot of frustrating maintenance problems... and other problems, too. She was glad to sit and just eat and not think about anything in particular.

Cpl. Cody looked at Razor as they entered the Mess Hall, "Well, I wasn't fully expecting to see her here now. Shall we grab a tray of gruel and join her? At least no one can say we were secretive."

Razorski and Cody each got a lunch plate and headed to the table Mac was sitting at.

"Can we join you?" the Gunnery Sergeant asked.

"Oh, sure," the Deck Chief agreed. She knew Razorski pretty well, and knew who Corporal Cody was. She was sure they'd at least exchanged casual comments in the comings-and-goings on the deck. "Ski, I heard that Brad has some coffee bean plants..." she took a sip of the black liquid that was referred to as 'coffee', and continued, "Do you know when we might get real coffee again?"

Razorski snorted. "Not soon enough," she said sardonically.

"Real coffee would be a good thing. Until then, we continue to hold our noses and drink." Cody said with a small smile.

"I've actually had worse," Mac told him. "Oh... wait... that wasn't coffee, it was transmission fluid." She made an ick face, then glanced from Cody to Razor, sensing... tension? Something. She gave a mental sigh. "So, what's up? Something about Frankie?" The Gunnery Sergeant had tracked her down on the deck earlier, to tell her that she'd thrown Frankie in the brig. Mac had a hunch this visit was related to that.

Tom knew he could not hold off any longer and he put his coffee down. "In a way yes, but it's more about you. It's been making the rounds that things haven't been great between you and Frankie and it has us and some others wondering if you're okay? Also, if you need to talk to someone, you have friends on the deck and in the MarDet that would be happy to listen should you need them."

Mac gave Cody a level look. "I appreciate that you're worried about me... but what about Frankie?" She was both appreciative and annoyed. "If you're wondering about anyone being okay, you should be trying to talk to Frankie."

She stopped, working to keep anger out of her voice. "He's the one who's having a really hard time. I thought you guys were all supposed to be looking out for each other." She gave Razorski a glance. "I know you've done what you can, Ski, but Frankie needs his peers--" she turned her glare back to Cody. "He needs you guys to help him." She breathed in and out slowly. "I have my own problems, but I know who I can talk to. There's no way I can understand what Frankie has gone through, but you guys who have been in combat with him, you know what it's like. You're the best ones who can take this whole rotten thing and try to make it better. You should be worried about Frankie, not me."

Mac stood and picked up her tray, then paused and sighed. "I really appreciate the concern, Corporal, please don't get me wrong," she said quietly. "But there's nothing I can do to help Frankie. There might be things you and his MarDet friends can do to help him deal with what's in his head." She looked at Razorski. "Maybe the best thing for Frankie now is a total change. Give him a different job, put him in a different platoon, maybe then he can get out of his nightmares and into something new."

The Gunnery Sergeant nodded calmly. "It's a possibility that Dr. DeValera and I have discussed. I'm sorry we've upset you."

Mac sighed again. "I'm more sad than upset," she said, and then walked off without another word.

To Cody, Razorski said, "Have any of you tried getting through to Frankie? Because I am seriously considering assigning him to a different ship."

Tom took a deep breath, "Three of us tried to talk to him after he was placed in the brig. He told us to frak off. I don't know what else to do at this point...you have any ideas left? Hell, most of the MarDet is afraid to approach him...that's how we ended up here. Grunts would rather take on a column of super-armed Cans than deal with him at this point. What gets me is I know he's a good guy. Damn this war."

"Sorry about dragging you into this, sir." Tom dejectedly looked at his coffee for a moment and then back at Razor, "I'd love to help Frankie out, I'm just out of ideas. Hell, the folks back in the MarDet are blank on what to do next. Maybe...I don't know...Gods, this sucks."

Razorski nodded agreement. "Dr. DeValera and I go back a lot of years, and at this point, we both agree that getting him in a new environment might be the best bet. I'll talk to Laffitte, although I don't trust his judgement right now... but I'm also going to talk to the other MarDets and see if there's a better fit for him." She regarded Cody silently a moment. "I think it might be better for Mac, too, as much as she cares for him. She's got enough things of her own to handle."

"It may be for the best." Tom looked down at his tray and then back to Razor with a half-hearted smile, "New scenery, new people...new gruel. I hope it works out for Frankie...and Mac, too. Gods know they've both gone through a lot."

_________________
"Times change...and so must I." - The Doctor, 'Time of the Doctor'


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 Post subject: Re: Episode 37: Loose Ends/Derelict
PostPosted: Mon Nov 23, 2015 11:51 am 
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Highlands Dawn - Presidential Office
Day 286
Early Afternoon


For the first time in what seemed an eternity, President Andy Meyers had a moment of 'peace'. All the paperwork had been signed. He had no visitors in front of him. He wasn't on the wireless having in-depth discussions about population movements, numbers or a myriad of other things that had swallowed his time over the last few weeks.

It was just him, his office and a sleeping cat in the corner. Silence had arrived at the Presidential Suite...and it lasted for all of fifteen seconds.

The 'ding' of an e-note broke the silence of the room. It was a sound that Andy had heard in his dreams and nightmares as of late. Sometimes, the President would think he heard the message, but it was just his imagination running away with him.

Nope, not losing my marbles this time, Andy sighed. It's the real deal...

Quote:
To: President Meyers
From: Eleni Kyriake
CC: Vice President Liala, Admiral Rodrigues, Quorum President Greene
Subject: Final Population Numbers

President Meyers,

The initial population count will be ready for your review tomorrow morning at 0900, per your orders. My staff is compiling over all numbers per ship and demographical breakdowns by Colonial and Oasisan. Those will be ready in two days. I can e-note these to you or present them personally.

/Signed,
Eleni Kyrike
Secretary of State


Andy was quick to reply and he included Liza.

Quote:
Please come to my office at 0930 tomorrow and we will discuss the report. Liza, I would like for you to be in attendance of well.

-President Meyers


After sending the e-note, there was another 'long' silence in the office. Andy had just started to recline back in his chair when the dreaded 'ding' echoed throughout the office.

Quote:
Dear Secretary Kyrike,

There will be an open meeting of the Quorum tomorrow at 1500. We ask for your attendance to present and discuss your findings. Please e-note the report when you have completed it.

You will be scheduled after the President's general report.

/Signed,
Patrick Greene
Quorum President


Andy looked at the signature on the e-note for several long moments. Is this really Patrick or is it his Chief of Staff? Patrick still seemed rather broken up over the loss of Tia when I talked to him yesterday. If it is Pat...maybe this is his way of working though everything?

Not two seconds after completing his thoughts, there were several dings coming from the computer. Andy turned off the monitor, which killed the speakers automatically. He then pressed a button on the handset that went to his secretary. "Laura, inform my bodyguards that I'd like to finally have lunch. We'll leave in five minutes."

"Yes, Mr. President..."

_________________
"Times change...and so must I." - The Doctor, 'Time of the Doctor'


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 Post subject: Re: Episode 37: Loose Ends/Derelict
PostPosted: Fri Nov 27, 2015 5:12 pm 
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Battlestar Libra
Sick Bay
Day 286

“What the frak are you doing?” DeValera asked; not accusingly, but with concern.

Joe McCloud set down the stack of boxes he’d been carrying and turned to the physician, retorting, “R-restocking, what does it look like?”

“I’ve got orderlies whose job it is to restock,” Ralph said calmly, regarding the former commander of Oasis’ Civil Defense force.

“No one will give me a job,” McCloud’s tone held both anger and frustration.

“Joe, you were seriously injured a week ago,” DeValera said with patience.

“I’m fine, ph-physically!” Even as he spoke, Joe’s anger faded to moroseness. “Except for my frakking brain,” he muttered.

“Come on, let’s go sit down and talk,” DeValera replied with sympathy.

They sat in the comfortable chairs in DeValera’s office, Joe stretching out his long legs and looking down at his hands as he gripped them together in his lap. “I know, you’ve told me it takes, takes time,” he sighed. “But I feel… like…” he hunted for words, shaking his head with irritation when he couldn’t express his thoughts.

“Relax, Joe,” Ralph said. “You’ve improved a lot already.”

“I need something to do,” he said in a low voice, glancing up at the doctor, then down again. “Here, I’ve just been… uh, like, chewing on myself, on my thinking. It makes me… mad.” He glared at DeValera. “And, and, de…”

“Depressed,” the physician supplied the word. “Normal reactions, Joe, both of them.” He gave a wry smile. “Knowing it’s ‘normal’ doesn’t make it much easier, though, does it.”

McCloud shook his head. “Even if it’s easy work, I need to feel…” he turned his head, looking off in the distance. After a moment, he looked back at DeValera, “I, I need to feel useful. At least a little bit.”

Ralph nodded thoughtfully. “Let me ask around,” he told McCloud. “We can probably find something useful for you to do.”

McCloud. “Thanks, Doc,” he said in a low voice. “I don’t even… know… who I am. Anymore.”

DeValera sighed. “Frakking cylons,” he said.

“Frakking cylons,” Joe agreed.

_________________
Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper, about budget cuts for the US’s intelligence agencies: "We're not going to do more with less and all these other clichés. . . . We will just simply have less capability."


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 Post subject: Re: Episode 37: Loose Ends/Derelict
PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2015 5:53 am 
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Demeter
Day 286
Early 'Afternoon'

(Several writers)

There had been a lot of unhappy days since the start of the exodus. Everyone on Demeter had been touched by the sorrows of war and running for dear life. It was not very often that there was a happy moment.

Today was one of those rare moments.

As the door to the shuttle bay opened, William and Jenni Guynes emerged...along with a pilot and two Marine escorts. The soldiers had rifles slung on their backs...but bags with baby supplies in hand. William held the most precious 'bundle' of all: Anna Xenthais Guynes. She was bundled up, but the infant girl was smiling.

"Ah, Miss Anna Xenthais Guynes!" Karl Mueller greeted the group enthusiastically. "How is the future President of the Twelve Colonies?" Mueller hugged Jenni Guynes and then shook William's hand, prying it away from the baby.

Jenni laughed a little as William looked and smiled at Karl to reply, "I'd prefer she makes Admiral, but I'll take a President," he said.

Ashley McCready gazed upon Anna and then looked at Jenni. "She looks like her momma... good job, you two!"

With that, Jenni blushed and took Anna carefully from her husband, "Aw, thank you!"

"Thank the Gods she got your good looks." William quipped.

Jenni giggled, "She did get your eyes... so I can't take all the credit."

Carly Carter stood back, taking in the scene. She didn't know the new parents, or most of the Demeter's long-time residents. Carly watched Ashley McCready, struck by the way the young woman seemed at ease in these surroundings, with these people. She wondered if she would ever reach that level of comfort. Already she felt closed in, claustrophobic. Carly hungered to be outside, riding her horse or driving the scout truck. Will I ever feel the wind on my face again? The sun on my shoulders, warming me? Grass under my feet? The feeling of being trapped built within her and she took a step back from the knot of people. The only reason she did not turn and flee was that there was nowhere to which she could run.

The gathering continued for a few more minutes until someone suggested that everyone head for the main lounge. Along the way, Putz and Joe Heaton emerged from engineering. Inga took notice of the two and made her way over to them, "So boys, what's the news?"

Putz took a deep breath, "We're fine for right now, but we're overdue for an FTL overhaul. To speed up the spool, we need to rebuild some things."

"I was afraid you were going to say that." Inga frowned. "So, we're stuck at a 20-minute spool? Longest in the fleet..."

"And I would say over the next fifteen to twenty jumps, that's going to increase to 22 to 23 minutes." Joe added. "It's just taking longer and longer to build up the needed energy to execute."

As the three talked, Cmdr. Guynes couldn't help but overhear the conversation. "Guys...is there any way I can help? Sorry, I don't mean to seem like I'm listening in. You've all been so good to me and Jenni and Demeter is like a second home. "

Inga smiled, "Thank you Will...but it's okay. I'm sure we'll get our turn on one of the tugs or Titan."

Putz, almost uncharacteristically, openly disagreed with Inga, "Boss, if I were you, I'd take the offer...even if it's small."

"I just don't want to take away from anyone else" Inga sighed. "The military has a lot going on right now."

"I imagine if I talked to Lane...Maj. Azmos or Col. Trafford, they'd be able to spare an engineer or three for a few hours." William said with a smile. "Besides, there's one thing you haven't thought of, Inga."

"And that is, Will?"

"If Xen finds out about this, she'll show up with a dozen engineers and techs in tow. You'll also get an earful of static from her about not saying something earlier."

Joe Heaton took a deep breath and added, "And then she'll be on mine and Putz's backsides for not telling her."

"They've got a point, boss." Putz added.

Inga looked at all three and shook her head in agreement, "Just don't put anyone with bigger issues ahead of us. Let me know when they can come and thank you, Will."

"Any time, Inga."

_________________
"Times change...and so must I." - The Doctor, 'Time of the Doctor'


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 Post subject: Re: Episode 37: Loose Ends/Derelict
PostPosted: Sat Dec 05, 2015 11:00 pm 
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Battlestar Libra
Day 286

Major DeValera met Gunnery Sergeant Razorski as she was coming out the MarDet admin offices. It only took him a quick glance to see that she wasn’t headed for an urgent duty.

“Hey, Doc,” she greeted him. “Going in?” She held the hatch door open.

“Actually, I was looking for you,” he grinned. “Are you doing the rounds? We can walk and talk.”

“Sure,” she agreed, closing the hatch. Together they headed down the passageway. “How’s Monica and the babies?” she asked.

“Doing great on all counts,” he replied, smiling. “I think she was born to be pregnant.”

Razorski snorted. “Some of us think she was born to be a worlds-class rugby player,” she said, but DeValera knew that her comment was in jest.

“She’s got a start on a team,” the doctor responded with amusement. With a gleam in his eye, he added, “We’ll call you when we need a babysitter.”

“Piece of cake,” she answered without a pause. “If I can keep a Marine det in line, triplets will be no problem.”

DeValera laughed. “You’ll have them doing pushups in their cribs.”

“Frakkin-A,” she agreed.

They walked in silence a moment, pausing outside Engineering to chat a moment with the Marine on guard duty there. When they continued, Razorski queried, “So what’s up, Doc? I don’t think you came by just to walk rounds with me.” She knew, though, that he often ‘walked the rounds’, checking in with the on-duty troops—Marines and Navy alike.

“What’s up is Joe McCloud,” Ralph replied pensively. “He wants a job.”

“How’s he doing?” Ski asked. She liked McCloud, and knew he hadn’t planned on leaving Oasis. He’d come to the aid of a Marine squad—Major Duncan and a few of his Spectres, and had been injured in the last battle before the Librans had left Oasis. McCloud was injured, unconscious, and Duncan had no choice but to evac McCloud along with his squad.

“Pretty good, considering,” the doctor answered. He sighed. “The usual that goes with brain trauma… anger, frustration, difficulty expressing himself at times. Headaches, sometimes sudden and severe.”

She nodded understanding. “How’s his concentration?” she asked.

“Not bad, for what he’s gone through.” He paused, thinking, and went on, “I wouldn’t recommend a job that involves difficult analysis or intricate dexterity, not yet. I thought you might have some ideas, you know him better than I do.”

The Gunnery Sergeant pondered a moment, then said, “Well, I know that Mac needs people to work the production line.”

“That’s right, she mentioned that to me,” DeValera murmured.

Razorski nodded. “Joe’s a gun guy, and they’ve got a subassembly line for the Viper and Raptor guns. It’s not hard work, but not easy, either. He’d have repetitive stuff, but the kind that needs some attention. He’d be on his feet, moving around, and other people there doing the same thing to help keep him on track.”

Even as she spoke, DeValera was nodding. “And that’s not just ‘busy work’, either,” he said. “He wants to do something useful, and that certainly is.” He smiled. “Thanks, Ski. I knew there had to be something better than restocking supplies or folding laundry for him to do. I’ll go talk to Mac.”

“I’m sure Mac would be glad to have him,” Ski agreed. “She’s been trying to take some of my Marines from me to run the lines.”

“Has she succeeded?” DeValera asked with humor, picturing the pixie-like Chief of the Deck facing off the formidable Gunnery Sergeant.

“Almost, until they found out she’s as tough a task-master as I am,” Razorski replied dryly.

“That doesn’t surprise me,” Ralph chuckled.

After a pause, Razorski asked, “Has she talked to you, Ralph? She’s been going through some tough shit with Laffitte.”

Serious, DeValera nodded. “Yes, she has,” he said, and sighed. “She’s handling it as well as can be expected, given the trauma she’s been through herself, lately.”

“You and I have talked about assigning Laffitte to another ship,” Ski said to him thoughtfully. “For his own sake, but I was also thinking… maybe it would make things easier for her if I do this now. What do you think? I can have him off Libra in twenty-four hours.”

“I think that sounds like an excellent idea,” DeValera replied at once. “Frankie isn’t working with me at all—oh, he’s showing up for his appointments,” he added hastily, seeing Razorski’s expression. “But I could just as well talk to a brick wall. Or get a brick wall to talk to me. He won’t get a handle on this until he wants to. If he’s working with a different det, new people, he might start straightening out.”

“Or dig himself a deeper hole,” Ski said darkly, “but at least he won’t pull Mac in the hole with him.”

DeValera nodded grimly. “Let’s hope that a change will do him good,” he responded soberly.

Ra’iten,” Ski said.

“As Aten wills,” Ralph murmured. He quirked an inquiring eyebrow at the Marine. “Been hanging out with our nomads much lately?”

She gave him a quick sideways glance and said, “Sometimes I think they have the right idea. A god that just stands judgment, without intervening, makes more sense than what our gods have put on us.”

“Either way, we do the best we can,” Ralph smiled. “Thanks for your help, Ski.”

“Any time, Ralph,” she answered.

_________________
Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper, about budget cuts for the US’s intelligence agencies: "We're not going to do more with less and all these other clichés. . . . We will just simply have less capability."


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 Post subject: Re: Episode 37: Loose Ends/Derelict
PostPosted: Thu Dec 10, 2015 3:01 am 
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Day 286,
late afternoon,
Colonial Destroyer Perseus
Commander Karl Vansen commanding,
Commanders office
(jdctexas&RaiderX collaborating)


Cmdr. Karl Vansen sat at his desk and allowed himself a small smile. If there was ever a bane for any commanding officer, it was paperwork. No matter how much of it was delegated or streamlined, there would always be a pile of it to sign-off.

For the commanding officer of the Perseus, it was always good to see everything in the 'completed' bin on his desk. As Karl relaxed, his desk intercom crackled to life.

"Commander, this is Private Jordan. Capt. Palmisano is here to see you."

"Send him in, Private." Karl said as he sat up straight. As Eric entered the room, the Commander could tell something was on his mind. "Eric, have a seat. You picked a good time to come in."

Captain Eric Palmisano, the commanding officer of the ships Marine Detachment seemed to be unusally nervous. At the older officers offer, the dark-haired young man folded his muscular frame into the chair in front of the commanders desk, collecting himself for a moment before looking up at Vansen.

"Permission to speak freely, Sir?“

"Always. What's on your mind, Eric?"

"I’m not sure about how to address this, Sir…I heard about a new position being opened somewhere in the fleet that sounds like a challenge that I’d love to tackle and I guess I just wanted to ask you, off the record, for your opinion and maybe even your support."

Without talking any further, the olive-skinned Captain handed Vansen a slip of paper out of a Folder he had brought with him, obviously a printout.

Quote:
Fleet Command is offering a posting for a commanding officer a yet-to-be-assembled Marine Unit aboard the Battlestar Taurus. Applicants should hold the Rank of First Lieutenant or Captain and have experience with both Command positions and Special Operations. Any further qualifications are optional. Applications are to be sent to Commander Guynes, Battlestar Taurus


"Well, I shouldn't be surprised and I don't blame you for wanting to make the jump." Karl admitted. "I think you would be a good fit there...and I'd hate to lose you here. Still, far be it for me to hold anyone back. You do understand what your getting into over there? The loss of Maj. Storm was a blow to the entire MarDet."

Palmisano nodded. As MarDet CO himself, he had known the other Marine COs in the fleet pretty good and Major Storm had been something of a friend as well. "I heard, yes. We all lost friends on Oasis, but we have to keep going now...In a way, the new unit might be just the distraction the Taurus Marines need right now, a fresh start for some and a friendly rival for others, Sir."

"If you get the spot, see what it's like before you make any changes. I think you'll have a good team to work with there." Karl too a deep breath and continued, "If you go ahead with this, get your application done quickly. I'll advance it to Commander Guynes with my positive recommendation."

"Thank you Sir," Palmisano smiled, his nervousness suddenly disappearing, "and I've already prepared the application...just in case, you know? Something else, Sir, do you have any candidates for the Perseus MarDet CO should I get the spot?"

"I have some ideas...but seeing that we're just minutes into the process, we have a ways to go." Karl said with a slight laugh. "Who would you select, if you were me?"

Still grinning, Palmisano reached for his Folder again. "First Lieutenant Marian Grey, Sir. She's the XO of Griffyn's MarDet, has been there for almost two years. She has leadership experience and the fitreps to prove it and she's tough enough for our jarheads. She'd be a good fit over here, but I have no idea if she's even interested. Of course, I'd have to get the Position on Taurus first..."

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 Post subject: Re: Episode 37: Loose Ends/Derelict
PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 5:45 pm 
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Battlestar Libra
Chief of the Deck’s Office
Day 286

After searching high and low, Dr. DeValera found Chief MacLean in—of all places—her office. “Hi, Mac,” he greeted her, standing in the hatchway. “Do you have a minute?”

Mac looked up from the duty roster she’d been working on and replied, “Doc, you saved my sanity… at least temporarily… paperwork drives me nuts!”

The physician chuckled, going to sit in a chair near her desk. He checked it before he sat, knowing that in this office the seat of a chair could be put to use as a work surface.

“It’s clean,” Mac assured him with irony. “I had to clear it off to chew out one of my people earlier today. What’s up?”

DeValera sat back and said, “Well, I think I might have a piece of the solution to your staffing problem on the production line.”

She perked up at that, leaning forward. “Really?” she asked.

“One of my Oasis patients is itching for something useful to do,” DeValera explained. He paused, then asked, “Did you ever get to meet Joe McCloud?”

“I know the name,” Mac replied thoughtfully, frowning with concentration. “Isn’t he—that is, wasn’t he the commander of Oasis’ defense force? I heard something about how he saved Major Duncan’s life, then the Major returned the favor. Cylons on Oasis…”

The physician nodded affirmation. “He’s had some brain trauma, luckily not too severe, and he’s capable of working. It would definitely improve his morale to have a job.”

“Wouldn’t working the production line be a bit of a… er, demotion? For him?” she asked dubiously.

“In normal circumstances, yes,” Ralph concurred, “but he still has some recovering to do, and that will take time. I talked to Ski about it, and we both think he’d do well in the gun shop.”

“Oh, if you and Ski think that’s best, we sure could use people in the gun shop,” Mac agreed at once. “I’m about four people down, there. Necromancer is sending me a couple workers and I think one of them has some gun experience.”

“Ski said that Joe’s a ‘gun guy’,” DeValera nodded. “I’m hoping there will be someone, ah, understanding to work with him. He gets severe headaches on occasion, although those are decreasing. He also sometimes has difficulty expressing himself—finding the right words.”

Mac told him, “The gun shop supervisor is one of my best. If the guy from Nec really does have gun experience, I can put him and McCloud together for training.” She nodded slowly to herself. “And I can always shift people around if I need to.” She shrugged with one shoulder. “Sometimes it’s who someone works with that makes the difference, not the job itself. Send McCloud here to my office, and I'll take him down to the line and introduce him around.”

“I knew I could count on you, Mac,” DeValera smiled, getting to his feet.

“I think we’re helping each other out!” she responded. “Especially as you got me away from paperwork for a little while!”

“Can’t you delegate that?” DeValera asked.

“I tried,” she said with a sigh. “That’s why I had to chew out one of my folks, earlier.” She gave a wry smile. “Sometimes it’s who someone works with… and I know my people the best.”

"That you do," DeValera agreed.

_________________
Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper, about budget cuts for the US’s intelligence agencies: "We're not going to do more with less and all these other clichés. . . . We will just simply have less capability."


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 Post subject: Re: Episode 37: Loose Ends/Derelict
PostPosted: Fri Jan 01, 2016 1:26 pm 
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Hospital Ship Chiron
Captain's Quarters
Day 286, Evening


"David," Nathan Santana greeted Dedrick as the door to the doctor's quarters slid open.

Dedrick brushed past him. "Nathan," he returned the greeting as he collapsed into a chair. "Your Exec is nothing if not persistent."

Santana gave Dedrick a quizzical look, then stepped to a cabinet and withdrew a bottle and two glasses. He spoke as he poured, "Lieutenant Nara is a capable officer, I'll allow you that. But you don't seem as though you appreciate her persistence."

Dedrick accepted a glass from Santana, draining half of it immediately. "Nate, it's just that..." Dedrick made a helpless gesture. "I appreciate her attention to duty, but I could do without all the attention she gives to me."

"Ah," Santana breathed, a smile creeping onto his face. "David, just bed her and be done with it. She clearly wants it, and you look like you could use the stress relief."

Dedrick tossed down the remains of his glass, then held it out to Santana. Shaking his head, he replied, "I just got engaged three weeks ago."

Santana shrugged, his smile diminished only slightly. "Bring Fernanda over for a visit, and bed them together," he suggested.

"I don't think Ferdie would go for that."

Santana finished refilling Dedrick's glass, then narrowed his gaze at his friend. "You haven't bedded Fernanda yet," he observed as he held the glass out.

"Give me that," Dedrick said with a scowl, then admitted, "No." Santana was silent in response, and after a moment Dedrick continued. "Her parents were Ascetics. She's not, but... I've been careful not to tread on their memory."

Santana shook his head in mock pity. "Well, frak Nara and just don't tell Fernanda. You sure as the hells look like you could use the release."

Dedrick drank deeply from his glass. "I wish it was that simple. I don't think I can lie to her, and I don't think she'd accept me being with someone else." He sighed deeply, then drank from his glass. "And I don't think sex is the cure for what's got me down."

Santana chuckled and eased back in his chair. "It's always worked for me," he said. "And scuttlebutt says Nara is quite a ride."

"I'm serious, Nate," Dedrick scolded, frowning.

"Okay, okay." Santana made a gesture as if to stop Dedrick. "You wanna talk, that's fine. But if you want counseling, you need to see DeValera."

Dedrick shook his head slightly, scowling again. "I don't know what I want. Well, yes, actually I do. I want to be free of the cylons. I want to feel like I didn't just kill fifty thousand people by leading those metal motherfrakkers to their colony. I want to find a world where I can build a house with Ferdie, like I promised her, without fearing that the cylons will find us."

Santana was nodding silently, but stopped when Dedrick stopped speaking. He found the Marine looking intently at him, as though weighing his next words carefully. Santana gave him his full attention.

"Nate, I want to sense the stream like Leoben does. I want to figure out how to do that, to see the future."


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 Post subject: Re: Episode 37: Loose Ends/Derelict
PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2016 5:05 am 
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Battlestar Taurus
Day 287
0645 CUT

Cmdr. Guynes heard the intercom buzzer and instinctively reached over and tapped the 'on' button for the speaker. "This is the Commander."

"Col. Merconi and Capt. Palmisano are here to see you, sir."

"Show them in and then do not disturb us unless it's an emergency."

"Aye, Commander."

As the hatch opened, William stood up and glanced at Capt. Neuman, "Ramona, thanks for sitting in with us."

"No problem, sir." Neuman said as she followed Guynes example. "I hope this is a quick process."

"Agreed." William quietly replied as the hatch fully swung open. Col. Merconi approched the two Taurus officers with the broad-shouldered Marine Captain from Perseus in tow.

The XO was all business in her introduction, "Commander, this is Capt. Eric Palmisano."

The Marine smartly saluted Guynes. The Commander quickly returned the salute and this offered the Captain a handshake, "Eric, it's been a while. Good to see you again. Are you keeping Karl out of trouble these days?"

"I'm doing what I can, Sir" Palmisano shook the offered hand with a slight smile, "Thankfully, things have been calm lately."

"Wait until your first born comes along." Guynes said with a smile. "You've already met the Colonel, I'm not sure if you have met Capt. Neuman, the head of MCIT?"

Neuman held her hand out, "We've talked over ship-to-ship, but this is our first time to meet face-to-face, Commander. Captain, nice to finally put a face to the voice."

"It's my pleasure, Captain" Palmisano smiled as he took the offered hand, "even though I have to admit that I am somewhat relieved that we haven't needed the MCITs services yet back on the Perseus for the last few months."

"That makes two of us, Captain."

Cmdr. Guynes motioned everyone to take a seat. "So Captain, tell us about Eric Palmisano...and tell me about you, not something I can just look up in a report."

The Marine Captain started for a moment before answering. "I was born and raised on Canceron, Prommos to be exact, my family wasn't exactly rich but we had enough my sisters to go to Prommos College...I only got in on something of a fluke, one of the guys from College Administration saw me at a public pool when I was doing a few laps and before I knew what was happening they gave me a scholarship and entered me in swimming contests. One thing led to another and last I heard, I still held two canceron records."

Eric smiled sadly, lost in his memories for a moment before returning to the present.

"After I graduated, I found a job as a teacher at my own old high school...physical education, as you know from my file. When I joined the Marines two years later, it wasn't just because I was bored by argueing with rich parents about making their obese kids breaking a sweat or that I felt that I could serve society better by keeping our Marines at their peak performance or something...I took the job because it paid better and allowed me to foot my parents medical bills back home. Success meant higher pay grades, more pay meant better medical care for my sick parents."

"Then, the cylons came, and I discovered that even though I have lost my family during the attacks, I feel like I somehow gained a new family with my brothers-in-arms. And like I always did for my old one, I want to take care of my new family now. And right now, it feels like the best way for me to do that is on your ship, Sir."

"Very well." Guynes said in a neutral tone. He looked over at Col. Merconi with slight nod. She quickly asked her question.

"You know what the current MarDet situation is. We lost a very respected leader and several Marines...some in NCO leadership rolls. How would you shape your leadership team and get morale up?"

For a moment, Eric looked down at the carpet. "What the MarDet needs right now is a sense of permanence, of stability, the loss of Major Storm is hard enough on them. For that reason, bringing in NCOs from other MarDets seems not advisable to me right now, at least not in permanent positions. I was rather thinking of promoting some of the Taurus Marines to NCO positions, if possible with NCOs loaned from the other MarDets to advise them...maybe for a two week period to allow things to settle?"

"That could be one way to do it." the Colonel said without emotion. "But, if you had to put out a call for additional officers or NCOs, what would be looking for?"

"To be honest, I'd prefer experienced NCOs to inexperienced officers, Sir" Eric answered, his voice as emotionless as the Colonels. "I've seen units suffering from inexperienced officers and right now, that's exactly what the Taurus MarDet does not need. If I would really need to fill officer postings, I'd try to negotiate for one or two of our most experienced NCOs to be field promoted. They're already in leadership positions, Transition would be easier on them than training a wet-behind-the ears Lieutenant not to kill his men through inexperience."

"I can't say I disagree." Capt. Neuman said to the others.

The meeting went on for another forty minutes. Commander Guynes at Capt. Neuman and then over at Capt. Palmisano , "Well, I think we're covered just about everything. Is there anything you'd like to add, Captain?"

"Just one thing Sir, there's no need to worry about your MarDet. They're a bunch of great guys from what I heard and even though they may be somewhat down for the count right now they'll bounce back no matter who gets the CO post. They're Marines." Palmisano grinned as if that explained everything because for him, it did.

Guynes glanced at Col. Merconi and then back to Neuman and Palmisano. "Captain Neuman will give you a tour of the MarDet. If you two will excuse us, the Colonel and I have some things to discuss."

With a nod and a "Yes Sir", Palmisano rose and after shaking Hands with both the Commander and the Colonel, the two Marine Captains left the Commanders Office. Only after the hatch had slammed shut again, Palmisano let out a shaky breath before turning to his fellow officer Ramona Neuman.

"At least I know those two take things seriously now. Was your job interview just as intense, Captain?"

"Mine was a bit...rushed back in the Intrepid days for MCIT" Ramona said reflectively. "It was along the lines of 'you have experience, so you're it' type of moment."

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 Post subject: Re: Episode 37: Loose Ends/Derelict
PostPosted: Fri Jan 15, 2016 4:51 am 
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After Captains Palmisano and Neuman cleared the room and the hatch was closed, Cmdr. Guynes looked at Col. Merconi, "So, what do you think?"

Xen raised an eyebrow, "I think you were right when you said that he would be the likely choice."

"We still have a few more interviews." Guynes paused as he took a sip off coffee, "More than likely, he'll be taking over and he's the only one that has experience running a MarDet."

"With the current our overall situation, the candidate pool isn't that deep to start with, Will. Damn Cylons."

"No debating that...and one person really couldn't put himself in the running with a black cloud hanging over his head."

"Lt. Masterson would have been an excellent choice." Xen sighed, "Damn civilian official getting his feelings hurt. He was doing his job limiting who sees our...'good' Cylon."

"I agree, but until Major Bays findings come out, he's got a cloud hanging over him." William took a deep breath, "Jon's a good Marine and Intel Chief. He's also a pro and will keep doing his job."

"Yeah, but it's going to leave a damn sour taste in his mouth."

"It would mine." The Commander was about to continue his thought when buzzing came from the intercom. It was Marine Cpl. Binder.

"Commander, Captain Butler is here with Lt. Moore."

William looked at Xen and then pressed the comm button, "Allow them in, Corporal. The Colonel and I are ready for the next interview."

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 Post subject: Re: Episode 37: Loose Ends/Derelict
PostPosted: Fri Feb 12, 2016 5:49 am 
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Highlands Dawn - Presidential Office
Day 287
0710


As the door swung open, Vice President Liza Liala smiled at President Meyers and entered the room, “Good morning, Andy. Are ready for the day?”

“Is anyone ever ready for an afternoon with the Quorum?” Andy returned the smile and motioned Liza to have a seat. “Glad you could make it this morning to discuss a few things before Eleni arrives.”

As Liza opened a notebook, she looked at Andy, “Okay and I have a few things as well.”

Andy took a deep breath and clasped his hands together, “Lets start off with a touchy subject first: You, me, the military and Kalrk.”

As her notebook suddenly closed, Liza took a breath and tried not to frown, “I had a feeling we would discuss this at some point. I have to admit; although I am appreciative of everything Kalrk’s done…I’m uncomfortable with him now. The revelation on his background is…unsettling, to say the least.”

“You’re not the only one who is unsettled by Kalrk. He’s an enigma…he’s a question mark to me now: Hero of the fleet. Kalrk the brilliant business man in the Colonies. He’s a friend and convinced me to run for President…and he’s also a Cylon.”

“And yet, our Admiral trusts him. That has to carry some weight.” The Vice President drew a deep breath and sighed, “There is one other thing that Kalrk has done.”

“And that is?”

“He’s caused a rift between us and the military. Gods, I hate saying that but it’s true. I wish you and the Admiral could have seen each other staring the other down.”

“You had some stare-down glares with the Admiral as well.” Andy paused, searching for his next words. “This gets out in the fleet, there’s going to be hell to pay.”

“Paying Hell may be cheaper. I’m expecting this to all end badly…should it ever happen.” Liza looked upwards for a moment and continued, “So, what is the plan?”

“On the surface, we continue as normal…no choice in that. Still, he has been loyal to humanity. Lets think for a moment…think back to the Pythos operation: If Kalrk had wanted us all dead, he could have turned and joined his fellow Cylons…attacked the fleet while the military was away. More than likely, even with the Lycanthrope, we would have been killed. He’s had the chance to turn against us, but he turned on his own kind. It matches what he’s done in the past.”

Liza considered the Presidents’ thought before replying, “True enough and he’s done everything that he can for us. He’s earned his place and trust, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t keep an eye on him Andy. I can’t fully trust a Cylon.”

“I don’t blame you. Still, he’s proven trustworthy until he shows us otherwise.” Andy forced himself to give a half-hearted smile. “For now, his secret is ours to keep, along with the military. I want to have a meeting at some point: you, me, Kalrk and Ben…get us all on the same page and heal any wounds.”

“That might be a good thing.” Liza locked eyes with Andy and continued, “And if the people of the fleet find out?”

“I have two letters in the safe under the desk. One is pointing out everything we’ve said about the good Kalrk had done. It will grant him ‘a pardon’ for being a Cylon, ‘protection’ for his safety and confirms his ‘citizenship’.”

“And what does the second letter say?”

“Let’s just say the moment I issue it is the moment you’ll get an immediate promotion. It’s my resignation letter.”

Liza looked at Andy with some shock, surprised with the revelation. “I have to ask you to reconsider that last letter, Andy. If this gets out, I’ll be in the same trouble as you. “

“Someone will have to take the fall, it’s as simple as that. If this gets out, I plan to take the blame…right along with the Admiral. He’ll be the other person getting blowback on this affair, but his position is secure. It’ll be ugly if it gets out, that’s for certain.”

Meyers took a sip of water and continued, “As of this moment Liza, you know nothing of Karlk’s background. That will be made clear in the eventual meeting. No one on your staff or mine will know his full story. If you have written or typed anything about this, destroy it. Just look at me and agree…my mind is made up.”

“Reconsider that second letter is all I ask…there must be other options,” Liza said and then reopened her notebook. “Are we ready to move on to the next item?”

“Agreed, let’s talk about the future of Secretary of State Kyriake…”

_________________
"Times change...and so must I." - The Doctor, 'Time of the Doctor'


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