Major Rick Martin was on a secure video link with Commander (acting) Eva Lawson. She had a curious look on her face as she went through the thick paper file she was delivered from decontamination.
“We have to get a few things straight before we make the final jumps to our hidden shipyard. First we need to understand who is in command. You are a commander but you don’t know our operations.”
“By military code I am an acting commander. I’m a CAG with quite a reputation. Some people might not like taking orders from me,”
“What was your rank when you were a CAG?” Martin asked.
“Major,” there was a pause.
“Five years four months,” Lawson said at the same time as Martin said “Three years 9 months.”
They both chuckled briefly. “You win,” Martin quipped.
“I think I lost,” Lawson said. She flipped through the briefing papers. There were some spectacular pictures of a shipyard. She did not recognize it. “I have been looking for an offer to foist this command an so I can strap a Mark VII on my back and get myself killed.”
“I was a manufacturing expert before then war. I spent a lot of time at Scorpia shipyards fighting with the contractors over production quality and materials charges. I was a bureaucrat. You at least can say you were a combat officer.”
“Yea,” Lawson was lost in the pictures. “This shipyard was impressive. It doesn’t look like Scorpia.”
“It wasn’t,” Martin said. “What I’m going to tell you is code word classified. Any listening devices in your office?”
“A ton,” Lawson said. “I can’t pass gas after dinner without someone analyzing it and making sure I at my veggies.”
“There is a very thin mobile phone in the back pocket of the briefing book. Turn it on.”
“How do I know it won’t signal the Cylons?” she joked.
“Do you want to team up or not?” Martin replied humorlessly,
She pulled out the mobile phone turned it on. “It’s on.”
“Punch in a phone number. +01.973.458.1071 01 is the planet code for Caprica.”
Lawson dialed the number.
“Open the app marked silencer. Give it the passcode 127334.”
“We are alone,” Martin said. “You don’t recognize that shipyard because Colonial Fleet never paid for it. It was a prototype designed to be mobile in case the Cylons ever took out Scorpia. We can work on any ship even the Mercury class. We can even manufacture Valkyrie class battlestars. If we can get the materials.”
“What is the production rate?” Lawson asked.
“Theoretically 4 per month. Some yahoo has been out slamming all the Cylon fuel ships and mining ships we were trying to hijack.”
Lawson smiled. “It is nice to see we are effective.”
“We got away with about twenty-five old relics from the decommissioning yard. We have a couple of Minataur class, a few Miverva class, even a couple of old Janus ships. We believe with time, materials and a lot of labor we could even produce a Jupiter class ship.”
“That is fracking amazing Major,” Lawson was impressed.
“We have severe shortages of skilled workers. Our little adventure just netted us 23,000 plus or minus new refugees which we have to protect feed and house.”
“Seems like a ready supply of labor,” Lawson suggested.
“The ad hoc ‘Peoples Council’ is raising objections to us drafting workers and not paying them.”
“We are keeping the alive,” the commander suggested.
“We are going to need to make a deal,” Martin said. “Galactica let by Education Secretary Laura Roslyn may have escaped with about 40,000 refugees. She was officially made president by the laws of succession. The ‘Peoples Council’ (he said the name with disgust in his voice) has the power to clear up out command issues. They are refusing to do so.”
“Any Admiral’s out there?” Lawson asked hopefully.
“Two. Rear Admiral Jamie Nagura, was badly injured in the attack on Picon fleet headquarters. He is lucid and awake about an hour a day. Legally he can sign promotion papers. Then there is this senile old lady from the first war. Perhaps you know her. Admiral Eva Lawson. Age 91.”
“Senile. We had her in a nursing home. Completely batty,” Lawson was pleased but extremely surprised her grandmother had survived.
“Then its Nagura and the Peoples Council. We will have to negotiate.”
“Okay Major Martin. Anything else?
“Lots,” Martin continued “on the mobile phone is the formula for a vaccine for your virus problem. It will stop the spread, but there is no effective treatment. Since you survived I assume you pulled CNP off your computer systems.”
“We pulled the entire last 18 months off and have a three-year-old operating system,” Lawson said. “So says my XO who is really a computer geek.”
“She will want that phone. It contains a powerful program that will clean out a lot of Cylon trash. Your network is managed by hundreds of network routers. Many of these are infected with garden variety Cylon viruses that can talk to the Cylon network and frack us all good. It’s going to be a job cleaning them out but we are going to do that before we take another FTL jump.”
“Prudent,” Lawson replied.
“Now the really fun part. Back of the briefing book. The toasters figured out how to create humanoid models. Real, living flesh and blood humans that bleed, have sexual relations, do all the things that we do.”
“The Cylons look like us now.”
“I am ashamed to admit I was fracking a model six that was one of the best whore’s I’ve ever been with. I caught her trying to hack my workstation.”
“That sucks.” Eva Lawson was studying the photos and intelligence files.
“Under interrogation she gave up that there were seven humanoid model. We have discovered three. Model six, the first photo. Next photo.”
A picture of a dark-skinned bald male was revealed. Lawson did not recognize him. “This one likes to play a doctor. He was posted on a medical ship that survived the fall. He air locked the entire ship.”
Lawson flipped to the next photo. Her entire digestive tract contracted into a ball of molten lead.
“This one likes to play the role of priest. Brother Cavil he calls himself. He appears to be some kind of Cylon leader. You need to check any ship for this model before making the jump.”
“Got it,” Lawson said. Now she had a problem. She had been fracking a Cylon. “Give us a couple of hours to get our systems cleaned up Major Martin. We will get ready to make the jump. We are going to need a lot of doses of that vaccine.”
“All right.” Major Martin asked. “Any orders.”
“Nah,” the commander said. “I’ve got some trash to take care of.”
Lawson acted quickly. She shut down the transmission and tried to call her Marine guards. For that to work she had to shut down the mobile phone.
On an old-style phone handset, she contacted her guards. “Send Brother John up here immediately.”
There were several objections. She pulled rank and announced without any knowledge that she had medical tests showing that John had suffered the virus and was now immune. Ten minutes later he was in bed next to her naked.
Swiftly once he was aroused, she pulled open her nightstand drawer and pulled out a pistol. She placed it in his hands and then twisted hard with all her strength, causing him to cry out in pain.
“What kind of role play is this?”
“You are a fracking Cylon,” she said. “You are going to die trying to murder me.”
“I think I should tell you about Cylon resurrection. I can’t die. If you kill me I will wake up in a couple of days in a new body with a complete memory of this life.”
Lawson cocked the gun. Cavil winced.
“Afraid to die?”
“It does hurt,” he acknowledged.
She pulled the trigger, it clicked.
“Oh did I mention I took the clip out of it?”
She twisted his arm harder and picked up a vase and bashed him over the head. Then she beat his face to a bloody pulp before calmly getting off of him and walking to the door. She invited the Marine inside.
“I just got an intelligence file on this guy. He had something to do with the attacks on the Colonies. He is a Cylon agent. Take him to the brig.”
This situation was completely out of control. She was completely compromised and she had to manage this situation to avoid a court martial. Half the ship knew she had been fracking this bastard. She was fighting to control her emotions.