Chapter 3: Eva Lawson

Eva “Yevka” Lawson was piloting a raptor, something she deemed a necessary evil. A 41 year old viper pilot she had done this one job all of her career. She had been removed as Commander Air Group of the Atlantia the flagship of the colonial fleet for getting drunk and sleeping with Admiral Nagama’s son, a viper pilot under her command.

This had not been the first alcohol inspired roadblock in her career, but this one was likely to be near fatal. Until this re-assignment she had in spite of her flaws been on the fast track. After three years as a CAG she had been promoted to Major and been scheduled to go to war college.

It was basically a two year course in how to drive a battlestar. Now she was a CAG to Samuel Miller, one of the fleets brilliant tacticions. There was a lot she could learn from the three time winner of the annual fleet war games if he would trust her and teach her.

The problem of course was her reputation was ruined and she was flying a milk run. She was ferrying a refurbished raptor from central repair on Scorpia to the Mercury which was currently at the soon to be decommissioned Solaria museum.

She grumbled silently as she requested clearance to land on the Mercury. She was told to wait for a viper which was the Admirals. She would be meeting her new commander in a few minutes if he stuck around long enough.

Mercury’s CAG had been killed in an accident and pilot morale had cratered. Specified to carry 10 squadrons or 750 vipers transfer requests had left them nearly a squadron short. If there was one thing Lawson and the Admiral could agree on it was she could stop the bleeding an restore morale to the flight crews.

Lawson slowed her approach and made room for the viper. With her usual precision she put her raptor on the maglocks as softly as a feather falling to the floor.

The great ship, first of her class, the most powerful in the fleet was beautiful with its many gun emplacements.  Her four landing bays, two each right side up, two upside down were fully operational. They were capable of recovering over eight hundred panes in just 90 seconds were ready for her approach. During light noncombat operations there was generally a single landing deck in operation. Today it was starboard upper.

Her hand was light in the controls, making her guidance of the 50 ton ship seem easy. It was not. Her hand was very supple on the control yoke.

The Admiral was waiting for her when her raptor was towed into the maintenance bay. He stood erect on the deck as the raptors door opened.

Eva Lawson was relatively short and thin wit black curly hair that was past shoulder length. She carried her helmet, which had her call sign embossed on it, Joker.

“Permission to come aboard Sir,” she asked from the step of the raptor.

“Permission granted,” the Admiral replied, standing stiffly on the deck.

Lawson jumped to the deck and saluted. “Reporting for duty Admiral.”

“A pleasure to join your team,” she said as the salute was returned sharply.

“Your credentials are well known,” Mueller replied. “Put my air wing back together. Stay the frack out of the bar and sleep in your own bed. Do that and our three years together will end in war college. Do we understand each other Major?”

“Yes Sir,” she said sheepishly.

“You meet the XO in my office tomorrow at 0800. Try not to be late.” He signaled to a lieutenant. “Show the CAG to her quarters.”

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