PHD #244: Canceron and Beyond
Canceron and Beyond
Summary: The CAG and Harriers SL debrief Marko and Leyla following their mission to Canceron. Talk turns to how that colony might fit into the Cylons' larger plans, and other matters.
Date: 28 Oct 2041 AE
Related Logs: Metastasis
Cidra Marko Leyla Trask 
Map Room - Deck 7 - Battlestar Cerberus
The one object that dominates this room is the one it is named for: the giant plotting table in the center of the room. Bottom-lit like the plot in CIC, this one is twenty feet across and about the same distance wide. The maps, which are rolled and kept in a locker at the side of the room, provide much more detail than most of the charts in CIC and are especially useful in planning tactical operations. Unscaled models of ships are available to be situated on the surface of the table and risers on each side of the room allow for a small audience to watch or be briefed. A single large LCD screen is built into the wall at the far end to display reconnaissance or other supplemental material.
Post-Holocaust Day: #244

Cidra tends to avoid the Ready Room except for *extremely* official circumstances, so she's called for the debrief of Flasher and Sweet Pea's run out to Canceron in the Map Room. Smaller, but you can manage most of the displays one needs without the feeling of being in a vast cavern. She's standing by the plotting table now, in her duty blues, having a cigarette while she waits.

Leyla received word down the line to report to the Map Room to see one Major Cidra Hahn. Given the sheer call it insanity, call it daredevil attitude, call it either absolutely brilliant or completely frakking stupid maneuver she and Flasher just pulled off, the pilot's expression is hardly a cheerful one, but is, rather, carefully guarded as she makes her way through the corridor, and after a rap on the hatch, spins the wheel to step inside.

Marko finds the Map Room a few moments later, arriving with the note pad usually kept on his kneeboard. He, too, looks slightly nervous at the potential outcome of this meeting, but he appears determined to keep cool about it. "Reporting as ordered, CAG." he says as he steps inside. "Hey Sweet Pea." he calls to his pilot, giving a slight wave.

Cigarette in mouth, thermos of what undoubtedly is full of Deck coffee carried in the right hand, and a hand-held data device in the left, Trask idly steps right through as soon as that hatch opens. "Thanks, Sweet Pea." Beat. "Cid," he greets, a bit muffled around the cancer stick. "Flasher."

"Kal," Cidra replies to Trask in kind, around her own ciggie. Which is put out (carefully, so she can save it for later) in a convenient ashtray. That slight smirk she always wears when people call her 'CAG' comes to her lips. "Flasher. Sweet Pea. I have just finished going over your after action report." As ever, it's very hard to make much of her reaction to it from her expression. "You are both still in one piece, thank all gods. How is your bus?"

"Bertha's fine, sir." Marko replies readily enough. "Didn't have a single fault in any of her systems the whole time." he adds, looking to Leyla for confirmation.

"Sir." See? She can follow protocol. The sort of protocol that goes: 1: Don't Speak until you're spoken to, and 2: Respect your elders. or in this case, your senior officer. "I went over her systems on the deck as soon as we got back, and she's fine. She fit and ready for duty." And sporting some new raptor 'ink', but that might be neither here nor there.

Ah, protocol. Something Bootstrap doesn't sweat when he doesn't deem it important. Like, say, wearing his duty greens and not putting out his tobacco-y treat. At the very least, he's smoking some of the good stuff he nabbed on Aerilon. For the nonce, he remains quiet, apart from puffing away. Those brown eyes of his are certainly attentive, though, and his very demeanor a bit akin to a hyena poised to laugh (or, more to the point, crack a smart remark) before he gets around to picking at whatever the CAG leaves on the carcasses of his underlings.

Cidra nods short, approving of the lack of destruction to both personnel and craft. "Most good. That did read like an extremely tight situation the pair of you navigated. Got in and out, however, and that is the main of it." Again, a mild sort of approval there. They did well by not dying. She'll take that as a win. "I do understand from the initial reports that the Cylons have reinforced Canceron, as they have many of the other colonies?"

What's this? Cidra is mildly pleased? This comes as something of a surprise to Marko, who finds himself releasing a breath he didn't realize he'd been holding. "Well, sir, the data we received during our fly over isn't exactly what I'd call 'complete'." he hedges carefully. "But, yes, sir, like the report said, that the Cylons would have other facilities on the planet is consistent with logic."

"They have Major. Half a dozen, at the least, more basestars than were previously encountered during the first recon, with full raider wings flying CAPs around both the planet and the larger ships in orbit." The exact numbers, at least as the raptor could track them are all in the logs and reports filed in the aftermath. "They also seem to have either reestablished or stepped up operations at mining facilities around the colony. My hypothesis is they're stripmining Canceron, before moving out along the tylium lanes or further afield to find more fuel." Leyla keeps her tone even, and her expression as guarded. It's not always a good thing when the CAG is pleased. And Flasher's other shoe is still waiting to drop.

Cue a small snort, including smoke through flared nostrils. "Understatement, that, Toast." Trask would know; he did the initial post-Warday recon of Canceron. "To be honest," the man continues, removing the cigarette to tap some ash into the tray on display, courteous enough to avoid that which Cidra is saving, "the numbers are disconcerting. So much so, I'm curious as to whether or not they've pulled out of Leonis, at least in part. We know they were building there. Presumably, they're also using Scorpia's shipyards for the same." Thus ashed, he asks, "What's the deal on the data?" Yes, Intel has copies, but the VAQ-141 should have retained that info, too. Could it be that he's asking the duo whether or not they've taken initiative and started delving into such?

Another short nod from Cidra at that. "It would be consistent with what we have observed in the other colonies. Strip-mining, that is. The footage from Gemenon indicated some sort of ongoing excavation. The Virgon 'graveyard' and debris surrounding so many of the colonies. And what appear to be active ship construction efforts in Picon's orbit. They are rebuilding. In earnest, it does seem." No other shoe immediately drops on Marko. Yet.

What's the deal on the data? Marko's eyes bug out of his head just a little at that one. Because, with the half-dozen other balls, balls, frak that, _eggs_, very delicate eggs, that he's currently juggling, he's got so much time to do Intel's job for them. "Intel has the imagery, sir." he replies, tone neutral but pleasant. "If I were to speculate." he adds, an eyebrow quirking for a moment at the use of that word, remembering the last time one of his 'speculations' was dismissed as just that. "My guess would be they're rearming. Or further arming, whatever the case may be." he sighs. "We know they've taken losses in the fighting, how many of them, we don't know. Since discovering the Aerion's pretty much blown the notion we're the only surviving ships from the fleet out of the water."

Leyla, despite her own workload, has a bit less than Marko, and so her 'freetime' is a bit more…available. "I've been reviewing the data Bertha brought back." The Deck be damned. Bertha Harrier-307 has been dubbed and Bertha she will remain, at least while Leyla is piloting her. "It's only a partial view of the planet, and only with our most passive systems. Add atmospheric cover.." She could go on about just now much junk is messing up their intel. "They're going at that planet with a vengeance." A nod to Marko, and his conjecture, "Add to the fact that rather than allow the raiders to deal with us, they began to maneuver an entire basestar as support…they know we're out here. And whatever it is they're doing, my guess is, they want it protected. Whether or not they know that that is because the Areion is now a part of our arsenal or not, I can't say, but it seems likely that the addition of a ship which has a singularly formidable weapon against them makes us much more of a threat and less of a nuisance than perhaps we were before."

Workload, shmorkload. Five hours of racktime is a luxury for the likes of the SL. "And we should have our own copy," is drily remarked to the JiG with a c'mon, now, you know that you know better than that look and tone. Tsk-tsk. Leyla, however, gives a more satisfactory answer, to which she receives a nod. Before he gets around to returning the cigarette to his mouth, he asks of Cidra, "How's the fleet lookin' for tylium?" Which is to say, how much does the fleet have? With the addition of the Areion and the yet-to-be-named freighter, it's a valid concern, especially when the Cylons have forcibly cornered the fuel market.

"I am unsure how much command has pressed the Areion personnel about their encounters - if any - with other Colonial ships," Cidra says. "Papa…" Ahem. "That is, Lieutenant Colonel Baer has mentioned none. He spoke some of the casualties among his pilots, but no other ships." Still, from her tone, she's making a note to ask. She nods as her junior officers speak, in firm agreement with Marko at least. "That was my thought as well, Flasher. Rearming, after the blow we dealt to their research station over Sagittaron. That would account for some of it." Some, not all. A slim frown as she considers Leyla's suggestion. "I had not considered it before, but it may be so. Whatever secrets may be aboard the ship of our new friends, they do deal pain to the Cylons. That may have attracted their notice." To Trask's question she replies, "We left spacedock with enough fuel to last us twelve years time. Granted, we have been running hot in places, and now have the new civilian ship to attend to, but we are well-enough supplied for our own purposes."

Oh joy, something else that requires his urgent and undivided attention. "I'll need access to a lot of the previous data, sir." Marko says at length. "If you're looking for a proper analysis." he adds, and if he were anywhere else, his head would be hanging fairly low at this juncture, but he isn't, so it doesn't. "Not that I'm an analyst to start with." he cautions. "But maybe if we can start going over things, a pattern or two might just emerge." he notes. "So the Aerion hasn't had any contact with other ships…" he muses, almost to himself. "Well, that's not a big surprise, seeing how they're a Special Operations vessel. They'd deploy alone or with a minimal support unit."

Bit your tongue, Aydin. Bite your tongue. one could almost see the need to make some sort of disparaging comment about the Areion, just waiting on the tip of Leyla's tongue, but she manages to keep it at bay, "Canceron isn't the only source of tylium, just the only source within the colonies. It's just the closest source of tylium. I could probably pick out a handful of places we could look for fuel outside of the colonies, but we're also going to be looking at needing to get it refined. And we may not find a refinery ship just lazing around in deep space. A plant…that would depend on whether or not the cylons knew all of the locations we'd been patrolling the last few years and the prospect lodes we were investigating. Regardless, the cylons have certainly not grown less vigilant. They're increasing their numbers, or perhaps consolidating them, given the number of colonies that appear to have been abandoned. That doesn't speak to me of getting indulent in victory."

While the others speak, Bootstrap seizes the moment to savor more of his ciggie. Mmmm. Allegheny tobacco. Exhaling, he notes, likely for Marko's benefit, "We still don't know who the mole is in CIC. That means whatever we outsource, we also keep in-house." Some might call that paranoid. He just considers it practical. "And since the two of you are too awesome for your own good," that actually /is/ a compliment, for the snarkiness is of a 'sucks to be you' variety, "guess who gets put to work." Back to the CAG is the simple, but no doubt serious despite the causal tone, "We should round up the others," meaning the other SLs, "an' speak with the Major and 'er Ess-Two. Pow-wow with the peeps aboard Corsie and the Praet, too, 'cuz we sure as frak can't afford anything happenin' to the tylium we do have." Leyla's offer garners a nod. "Do that. An' pull Pickle. She's an astronomer, so she can definitely help narrow things down."

"Our greatest issues with probable leaks in CIC have ceased since Abbot's arrest," Cidra says, her tone carefully level. "It is all well and good to keep abreast of how things are proceeding, but we must at some point trust our shipmates to do their jobs." A slight shrug, as to his comment about the Areion. "No contact they have yet seen fit to share with us, at least." She is ever-respectful of the Areion, yet it's clearer than she likely means it to be that their secrecy in places annoys her. "Consolidating, I do think," she agrees with Leyla. "They lost their strategic interest over Sagittaron, and Aerilon had little military value in the first place. Question still remains, what do they plan? But. It is not one I can answer this night." Which also clearly discomfits her. "As I did say we are, to put in mildly, running no shortage of fuel. Still, it is good to be proactive about such things, if we have the time between our other duties. The pressing matter now is planning where to proceed next, once our efforts over Aerilon are finished. Tauron seems to be the most likely next stop for us, as the Cylons appears to have abandoned it as readily as this planet."

Marko remains suspiciously silent on this particular subject, merely nodding and jotting down a few notes on his pad as to who Trask wants involved with the investigation/analysis. "Tauron wasn't exactly a garden spot, either." he notes simply. "No offense meant to anyone, but, well, it is true." he adds, shrugging slightly. "Looks like they're pulling their forces out of places they either have or had little interest in, or already taken whatever they needed from them." he begins, then interrupts himself by asking. "Did anyone find out what those camps and facilities were back on Saggitaron?" he asks.

"If you wouldn't mind, Boots, and with your permission, Sir, I'd like to pull Captain Vakos and Pens in as well. We all three of us worked the tylium lanes. Four heads are going to be better than two. Hashing out the details should be easy enough. A simple matter of planning ahead for rainy days." Yes, she's proposing being…less than truthful to the other three, but when needs must…"trust is certainly something that should exist between crewmates, but with something so delicate, we can't afford to not keep tabs on what's happening and what's going to be coming down the pipeline, see if their numbers jive with ours. If there is a mole anywhere in the ship, the best way of rooting them out is by fact-checking and doublechecking everyone's work. Or at least as much as we are capable of doing." And in this case, it means readings from the raptors. "We're still in stripmining operations of our own, down on the planet. The freighter is being outfitted for civilian occupation, and we're supplementing fleet supplies as best we can. Tauron does not seem to hold as much promise as Aerilon did, but we might have some success there." A shake of her head to Marko, "I haven't heard a thing."

That look Sweet Pea had a moment ago when the Areion initially came up? Maybe it's a Black Country thing because Trask is sporting a similar, subtle expression, averting his regard to flick at some imaginary lint lest his damnably emotive eyes betray him, as they are wont to do. Whatever he thinks about the personnel of CIC, he's keeping to himself. Instead, he says a bit snarkily about safeguarding the tylium supply, "I strongly suggest we make the time, then." Betwixt his lips goes back the cigarette for another long drag.

"Pens you can have, Sweet Pea. Poppy's ass belongs to Toast, though." Which is his way of giving permission should Cidra approve. In response to Marko's assessment of Tauron, Bootstrap sardonically smirks, "Ain't nothin' on Tauron but Taurians." No point for Cylons to mine for ore when they can just salvage fleet scrap, after all. And, well, bulls are ornery folk. Not the best for slave stock. As for the facilities, another shake of the head. "Not that I'm aware, and I've lost track of just how many fly-bys we've done of the shops on Aerilon. All that film footage and those photos are waitin' on the CMC to be put to use."

"I do not want us giving into paranoia," Cidra says firmly. "I will not start thinking all my shipmates a Cylon and imagining skinjobs under my bed…" Something in that turn of phrase makes her bite her tongue. She trails off. And amends swiftly, "We are still but one part of this ship, and all must work together if we are to survive. I have no objection to double-checking, but remember this. Either way, I suspect Pens and Poppy's level heads would be for the good in this endeavor, so rope them in as you will." To Marko, a slight shake of her head. "Our techs and Marines did explore some on Sagittaron but I am unclear as to what they found. They do appear to have been Cylon laboratories of some kind, but the toasters had pulled out whatever research they were working on when they exited the colony. The supposition is that the same can be said of those here, though I do not know for a fact what our ground forces have made of them."

"With your permission, sir." Marko says to Cidra, "I'd like to kick open that compartment, maybe compare notes with the medical division." he explains. "If it was a lab, then maybe medical's the one who ought to go over the data." he muses. "If nothing else, we'll be able to rule out whether or not the labs were, in fact, medical in nature or not once and for all."

"Thank you, Boots, Sir. I'll draft up a proposal for the project and submit it to the both of you before I pick up the team." That way, they can redact what needs redacting, "I know there's a new doctor up in Medical who might be of use, when it comes to biomechanical technology. A new civilian came up from Aerilon a couple of weeks ago. Just got cleared by the CMO, if that helps you with a place to start, Flasher." She is clearly not going to touch the idea of skinjobs anywhere in the fleet. That way lies madness, or a serious beatdown.

Why can't everyone be as pragmatic as Black Country peeps? Trask, like Leyla, also is not going down that road. Just because he's not speculating, however, doesn't mean he's going to part from prudence. Even so, there is no crack or quip at what Cidra says. Merely an astute look that does not linger. Instead, more smoking and a cheeky, "You can thank me by canning the 'sir' stuff, Sweet Pea. Oh, and gettin' me that doc's name."

Cidra nods to Marko and Leyla both. "I support you both in pursuing these items, so long as you do not neglect your daily duties. And your various projects, Flasher." There's a hint of concern for stretched Marko there. Just a hint. Perhaps. "In any case. Unless there is anything further, I shall not keep you both any longer. Good work over Canceron, as ever." The CAG is sparing with her praise, so even that quick compliment is a rare thing. Good job on the not dying.

Marko comes to attention smartly, like a good little ECO, and fires off a salute. "Sir!" he offers, before rotating neatly on his heels and taking his leave with a precise, twenty-eight inch stride. No sooner than he's clear of the room, he starts gnattering to himself and jotting frantically in his notepad as he begins to re-prioritize his days.

"I wasn't calling you Sir, Boots. In fact, I might never call you Sir again." Leastwise, she doesn't strictly have to, now that they're the same rank. But it's the way it always is between the two Black Country folk, one or the other of them always has to get a jab in on the other in any conversation, "But I'll get as much information as I can on the new doctor, see if we can schedule some of his time in advance, before the ravening hordes descend." With so few doctors in the fleet, and the population growing by fits and starts that turn into leaps and bounds, time is a premium. "I'll also see how much information we can pull on him from whatever we might have in the ship's records." Yes, she's all about the dossier. "I'll be down working in storage, if anyone needs me." In the same place she and Marko had their secret squirrel mission meeting, "Thank you, Sir. We will always do good work for you." She includes her ECO who's doing his little headless chicken hacker nerd (<3 Marko) dance out the door. But with the dismissal, Leyla too turns, to leave the map room, pulling out a pack of smokes as she goes.

He already told them they were too awesome for their own good, which he meant, but Kal can spare another compliment. "Good work, kids. Keep kickin' ass." The departing CAG gets a simple, "Major." Oh, and the ashtray held up for her to reclaim her carefully put-out cigarette. By this point, his palm device has long since been put away. And since the ECO seems in a rush, the SL deigns to be gracious and lets the JiG flee. "Flasher." Leyla, however, isn't so spared. "Stick around a moment, Sweet Pea." There is something to discuss. Do not be lulled by the off-handedness of the request.

Leyla pulls up short, at Trask's casual toss of the line. But, she is the current fish, and he has good aim with his hook. Still, she stays by the hatch, stepping to the side to allow the room to clear, shaking a cigarette out of her pack, lighter to follow, and she puts flame to tobacco before she turns back around, making her way back towards the SL's place by the map table. "What's on your mind, Boots?"

"Well, for starters," he begins, tapping more ash from his dwindling cigarette, "unruffle some of Flasher's feathers and let 'im know that Deck's comin' on-board with the Seven-point-Fives. They're gonna be conducting pilot interviews, as soon as Toast determines who she wants slated for modded birds." He's no Viper stick, so that certainly isn't Kal's call.

"I'll do the best I can, Boots. I think he's just feeling like he's being pulled every which way to Sunday. He's still a kid," which is rather funny, considering she's barely a few years older than her ECO, "And Caprican to boot. I'm not sure he realized just how much was going to end up dumped on his shoulders, and he's having trouble compartmentalizing and prioritizing." And that's said with no ire or unpleasantness. Leyla and Marko are tight, and the pilot supports her ECO 100%, "I think he's only now realizing that wanting to have a life, and being in the Wing are not entirely compatible." Leyla, not having any particular life outside of her job, well, it's easier. "I'll let him know. I'm sure he'll be happy to know they'll be taking some of the work from him." And then, silence, as she waits for the second installment.

"Frak that," Bootstrap idly dismisses. "He's got some bull in 'im. It just needs to kick the crap outta the Caprican bits, is all." Not the most sensitive sort, no. If he honestly thought Marko didn't have the ability, though, the SL wouldn't be pressing so hard. Even so, he's not oblivious to the possibility of burn-out. "Besides, he's really done all he can with the sims, for the time being. I'll sign off on a bit of shore leave. Give 'im some time to screw his wife good an' proper, lest his head falls off after his nads spontaneously combust." Puff-puff. Beat. "This one," he clarifies, lightly tapping one finger at his temple, before waving it off as unimportant, muttering, "Whatever." The younger ECO's sex life, or lack thereof, is not what he wants to discuss. "You're a sculptor, yeah?" Casual as casual can be, that.

As Boots seems intent on getting to a point that doesn't actually involve her ECO, Leyla settles in across the way, taking her time with her smoke. She might have a decent supply, but that's not reason to waste a few minutes of what pleasure she does allow herself. "Yes, I like to think so. Depends on what you want sculpted. I did mostly metal. Found object assemblage, some casting, bit of welding, smithing, when I could cobble together the materials to build a temporary furnace."

Not one to dither, Trask gets to the point. "I'd like you to make some medals. I've sketched some rough designs, even cleaned 'em up as vector art. Have the necessary materials." So on and so forth. "Up for it?" How often does one's boss say, 'Go forth and indulge in thy hobby'?

Leyla takes a few seconds to think about it; you can almost see that little organic computer in her cranium churning away with all of its little meat cogs, "If you've got the designs and the materials, I can find the time to make what you need." No, it's not so often, and hell only knows when she'll find the time. But if Boots is asking, Sweet Pea will make the time. "There a timeframe for when you need them by?"

"Cool," is the conclusion, as if it ain't no thang. "Obviously, you're the artist, so make whatever adjustments you deem fit." As for the timeline, the man appears to be in no rush. "Sooner is always better than later, but there's no real timeframe. Doesn't take precedence over anything else, but it's something I'd like to see done." Which is about all the SL seems inclined to say about any of it, at this moment in time. "I'll get you the files an' doodles and whatnot. No idea how long it'll take, 'cuz, yanno, I'm not an artist." Not that he seems distraught. Trask knows what he's good at, and that he's damn good at what he's good at. The rest, he's content to leave in capable hands he trusts. "Pretty sure the scrap I have should suffice. If not, I'm sure you can at least make an alloy or somethin'. /That/ much, I know." Self-deprecatingly, he smirks.

"I can work with whatever you have. Flesh out the images and do some mockups for you to approve. I've got quite a collection of scraps myself," picked up mostly during salvage operations, as Trask would likely know, "I can find a way to make it work. You'll need to arrange for me to get some face-time with a workroom down in Engineering, though, if I can't get access to a machine shop on the deck. Not that I think the Chief will say no." A hand reaches out to ash her cigarette, "I'll start pulling my equipment out of storage."

"That I can do." He and Gabrieli go back some 10 years, and this wouldn't be the first time the ChEng allowed his facilities to be used for a project. "These scraps are somewhat special," Bootstrap relays without going into further details. "It'll all make sense." When she gets the materials. That all said, "That's it." Just like that. Nonchalantly dismissing. "You need anything for anything that's been discussed today, lemme know." He already gave her Pens, Pickle, and (with Cidra's okay) Poppy, but he makes a point of making himself accessible to his people should they need him.

Leyla finally finishes with her cigarette, stubbing it out, before she rises from where she's been comfortably perched, "I'll get started as soon as I can." Once she gets the materials, of course. "And you always know where to find me if you need me." But dismissal is what it is, and she steps back, "See you back at the house, Boots." A chuck of her thumb towards the hatch, before she starts that way again, "I'll be down on eight."

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