PHD #259: Practice, Practice, Practice
Practice, Practice, Practice
Summary: Cidra and Wade put in some practice time in the sims
Date: 12 Nov 2041 AE
Related Logs: Training and Dreams
Cidra Wade 
Flight Simulation - Deck 11 - Battlestar Cerberus
A training room specifically dedicated to honing aerial skills, this area is equipped with several flight simulator pods that allow the pilots to practice maneuvers and tactics without being in a real live plane. The Viper-pods are installed on one side of the room with a little space between them, an attempt to provide a realistic feel for close-range wing training, while a smaller number of Raptor sim-pods are installed on the opposite side of the room from the Vipers. A central computer terminal and overhead display screen sits at the head of the room, where one can input exercises and data to be run in the sims, scroll through score records, and control the training modules.
Post-Holocaust Day: #259

Cidra has not had a great deal of time to devote to Wade's pseudo-certification in flight instruction, but she hasn't neglected it. She's reserved some Sim time for the pair of them today. She's early by a few minutes, which is typical. In her flight suit. Also typical. The CAG is a believer in getting the right 'feel' in practice. She waits now, fiddling with the main control console. Fingers tap-tap-tapping over the keys.

Wade does appear, about a minute after the setup time. "Major" offers the man, standing straight and offering a salute to Cidra. His hands move to his back and he looks around the room for a moment. He is also, wearing his pilot suit of course, ready to do some more training. "I have to say Major, after the Raptorball match, there's nothing I want more than to better my skills with the Vipers so I can then pass them along to other pilots" Because really, those peeps from across the street are really really good. He wants to be better than them.

"Lieutenant Colonel Baer's jocks know their business," Cidra concurs. Not looking up for a moment. Tap, tap, tap. Sharp nod. She's ready for whatever it is they are to do, it appears, and strides out from behind the console to meet him. "Which is no surprise. He tells me they are the best of the best. Personally selected by himself and his Commander Kepner. Who were themselves selected by Admiral Madeline Hauck." She says the latter name in a carefully neutral tone, though it carries a note of curiosity. Still, if she has questions or speculation she doesn't voice them just now. "This is for the good, to my mind. Gods could not have granted us better comrades to fight and fly with against the Cylons."

Wade moves closer to Cidra now, standing beside her as she works with the Sim controls. He listens in silence, still with his hands behind his back and nods. "Well, there's nothing more sweet than to beat the best, of the best. In order to do that, we gotta /be/, the best of the best." At this, he smiles as he looks at the CAG and then moves his attention to the Sim pods. "Major, if I may." starts Wade clearing his throat before saying something else "The Spectres and pretty much all the other Squadrons, have modified Mark Sevens." He nods and adds "Are we going to get our hands in the specs of those mods? Have we already? Because really Major, I would certainly like to get my hands in one of those Vipers"

"The specs we have," Cidra replies. "Though very few of them are instantly adaptable to our own birds. It is not that the Areion's Vipers fly *better* Mark Sevens than we do. What they fly are very *specific* ones. It appears their technicians have modified most of the pilot's birds to respond to their own flying styles. One bird…tweaked in a way to make it more adaptable to turns and aerobatics, if a pilot favors dizzying flying. Another to accommodate one who prefers to engage while diving. Another of their pilots in a Viper made for his…wingman, let us say, and the performance enhancements would be lost. One would likely even fly worse in a ship not modified for 'you,' as it were. Since you would be fighting something honed to another's flight styles."

Wade crosses his arms over his chest as Cidra explains "Hmmm, yes, I agree. They are not different so it's not like they are not Mark Sevens." He presses his lips together and nods "And don't get me wrong, it's not that I think their strength are purely the modified Vipers, it has a lot to do with skill. And that is skill that I want…" Ambitious? Yes. "Well, if you don't mind, should we ever reach the point of having mods made to our Vipers and in need of testing. I would certainly like to jump at the opportunity." Now, he rubs his hands together and looks at the sims. "So, are we going to shoot at eachother a little bit?" At this, he shows an honest, bright smile "I do have that bug of payback after you knocked me down the last time"

"That is something Captain Vakos and the other squadron leaders and I shall have to decide. But I shall keep you in mind," Cidra says. Inscrutable on the subject. It's not why she's here at the moment, after all. "We are, yes." On that note, she heads toward one of the Viper sim pods. "Though what we are actually going to do is toy with Flasher's computerized Raiders a bit. I shall fly your wing. Have we spoken of the how and why I qualified for Viper flight before, Duncan?" She wastes no time, getting her pod online as she waits for an answer.

"Thank you, Major" says Wade with a quick nod of his head. "Ah, yes, Flasher's Raiders. They are very good for practice, helps keep the senses sharp" With that said, he walks to his own pod but doesn't go in yet, he turns around and looks at Cidra "As a matter of fact, we haven't. But it's something I'm interested in knowing" After this, he gets into his own pod and starts to bring all the systems online.

[Sim-02-541: Cidra] Cidra keeps her pod open as she conducts her pre-flight check. Right down the list, faux-ship or not. While her attention is sharp to it, she converses with Wade as she goes through it. "I was a squadron leader on the Battlestar Aegean. Headed an electronic warfare group called the Crosshairs. I felt myself ready to move on to larger things. A Raptor pilot is most usually, if they do not just transition into Tactical as they age, given CAG spots on carriers or other smaller support craft. Rarely battlestars. Flight command is Viper-dominated, in both officers and mindsets, and to them generally go the richer plumbs. As it were."

[Sim-01-540: Wade] Wade runs pre-flight check as well, making sure that everything is showing green on his screens. "I understand." says the man as he keeps working on his pod. The pod itself is still open as well, his eyes looking at the controls "Looking for Viper qualification grants you the opportunity to land CAG status in a bigger ship." He nods in acceptance to that, being something he would do as well. "It worked out quite well I would say, Cerberus is quite a ship" When his check is finished, he lifts his gaze and looks at her "Have you ever felt regret? Not about seeking dual qualifications of course but I'm sure a move like that would bring side effects, yes?"

[Sim-02-541: Cidra] "A Raptor bus driver from Gemenon would never have gotten the new Mercury class without dual qualification," Cidra says. Without any hint of bitterness or dryness, just a simple fact. "And I would not have done my duty well without it, either. I needed a better sense of how a Viper operated, how its pilots *felt* in flight. Still. I learned to stick a Viper at thirty-five, all my instincts honed and trained for larger craft with very different aims and mission guidelines. I am still a Raptor pilot in my marrow, and in my best. I shall never outfly the best junior lieutenants in my Wing." Again, no regret, even said with a touch of pride in her people. But it's a fact.

[Sim-01-540: Wade] Wade thinks for a moment about what Cidra says and he can't help to smile at this. "That makes a lot of sense. Which guides me to think that, the best case scenario would dictate that a good CAG, if a Viper pilot by origin, should know how to fly Raptors as well." He nods firmly to this and continues "Like you said, a good CAG worries about all pilots and to better handle that, one must understand both birds, and not just one" Now, he takes a deep breath "Now, aside from having the actual qualifications. A CAG, or a SL are not just a set of qualifications, it requires a special type of officer to take on these positions. So while I agree that having dual qualifications helped you get a better CAG spot. Your persona had a lot to do as well" Is he brown nosing? Not at all, he is just stating facts, he is saying what he thinks. "My assumption is that, it's not easy to be the CAG" To this, he smiles.

[Sim-02-541: Cidra] "Best case scenario. Many do. The transition to Raptors from Vipers is slightly less…steep a learning curve," Cidra says. Pre-flight done, her pod closes up and she launches. Any further chatter with Wade will be done over the in-pod microphone system that simulates a 'comm.' "My point…" it crackles. "…is that you are a better Viper pilot than myself, Drips. And the key to being a good instructor is being able to measure a student's strengths and weaknesses. So you will tell me what I am doing wrong." A pause as she 'flies' into the program proper. "Now then. Drips, Toast, you have lead. I am on your six. Let us begin."

[Sim-01-540: Wade] "Something to keep in mind…" says Wade about Viper pilots going for Raptor qualifications. The man is done with all his checkups as well and after making sure that everything is nice and pretty, he launches his sim. Over the comm, he says "Agreed, that is something I want to make sure I'm doing well. I don't want to send pilots that are not ready, into a fight." He nods to this and clears his throat, speaking over the com again "Toast, Drips. Copy that, remain on my six, let's take things one steps at a time"

[Sim-02-541: Cidra] Cidra can handle the faux-ship but her flying style is noticeably less smooth than most Viper pilots with any amount of experience under their belts. She's definitely not a green ensign, but her flight is very workmanlike. As if she's trying to stick to the manual with precision, lest she face disaster if she deviates from it. Still, she's obviously qualified. "Drips. Toast. My visual is clear of contacts thus far. Anything on DRADIS yet?"

[Sim-01-540: Wade] Wade keeps his eyes on Cidra for a moment, studying her style. He looks around now, after she speaks and narrows his eyes as he spots something a few clicks away. His DRADIS confirms it and then he speaks "Toast, Drips. Two enemy contacts. Starboard side, Carom 452." He tilts his head from side to side and then looks at the CAG "Remain on my six Toast, let's punch it a little to intercept, do not engage yet."

[Sim-02-541: Cidra] "Drips, Toast. Two contacts, confirmed. I am with you," Cidra says. And she is, though she operates on the far end of the recommended distances for wingman ops. Like she's wary of putting too little space between them. Still, she sticks with him well enough toward their computerized foes.

[Sim-01-540: Wade] Wade looks at his DRADIS again and then at the incoming Raiders, noticing that they are paying special attention to him. "Toast, Drips. Alright, it seems that they liked me so this is what we are going to do. I'm going to go straight at them and draw fire. Open to the left and make an arc, going back towards them at a high speed, take the same target I take. Let's go for the one in the left (Raider1) I'll take evasive maneuvers to avoid getting shot down."

[Sim-02-541: Cidra] "Drips, Toast. Copy." And she does precisely that. For a woman who's so accustomed to giving orders, Cidra follows them without hesitation. She locks on the same Raider Wade's targeting, coming about for fire in an arc that'll hopefully strafe the bugger. She's still more workmanlike than flying pretty, but she does it.

[Sim-01-540: Wade] Well, the choreography work rather well actually; this pleases Wade. What doesn't work all that well for him is the fact that he misses his target and gets hit, even if it's just a little "Toast, Drips. Nothing to worry about, just keep your cool and stick with me, we'll get trough this." He notices that there is one Raider now going after Cidra and he adds "Take evasive maneuvers, we'll go for the one after you. Let's take that thing down"

[Sim-02-541: Cidra] Cidra's shots fly so wide they might as well not have faux-fired at all. Still, she does not seem deterred. Toast's cool is, if nothing else, generally firmly in place in the cockpit. Even moreso in practice than in reality. "Drips, Toast. Copy that. Taking evasive action, focus still on bandit one. I am with you."

[Sim-01-540: Wade] Now this are starting to work a little better for them. Wade's attack hits that Raider but doesn't do a lot of damage, however, Cidra's attack definitely gets the kill "Toast, Drips. Nice shooting out there, let's take the second one out and celebrate when we are done. Keep your focus up, stay with me. If the Raider keeps it's attention on me, punch the thrusters if not, keep evading"

[Sim-02-541: Cidra] "Drips, Toast. Copy that. On it," crackles Cidra's voice simply. She decent on the target that time, firing in a clean arc. A Raptor has a weaposn system too, after all, and that probably wasn't the steeper part of her learning curve. She still handles her faux-Viper a little blockier than a pilot might properly. Like she's waiting to be caught be more weight or less agile handling and is half-surprised by the sprint of her craft. But if her handling isn't pretty, it continues to generally do the job. She follows him in sharp toward the next bandit.

[Sim-01-540: Wade] One more, one more…at least it seems that way. That Raider sure likes Wade it seems because it's focus keeps on him. The man punches on the thrusters just like Cidra and he moves at high-speed towards that Raider. His attack hits and he sees Cidra's attack hit as well. This turns the Raider into dust and…flying guts and, all that crap. "Toast, Drips. Nice shooting out there, very well done. Let's make sure that the DRADIS is clean."

[Sim-02-541: Cidra] "Drips, Toast. My instruments read clear. Visuals check clean as well. Suggest we take it home?" And Cidra prepares to do just that. Still following Wade's lead, still flying a little farther from him than standard. Though, again, still meeting the required maximum distance recommendations.

[Sim-01-540: Wade] "Toast, Drips. Copy that, instruments show clear on my end as well. Let's head home. Well done" says Wade, and with that, he turns his Viper around, and moves in formation with Cidra. Back home, back to the big bird. The man did notice that she is flying at a greater distance than normal, but for the time being, he says nothing.

Sim-01-540 comes in for a landing.

Cidra brings her sim in for a virtual landing, going through her post-flight right down the checklist. As she did her pre-flight. Toast is not *quite* as by-the-book as Poppy out of the cockpit. But in it, she follows it to the letter.

Wade lands his sim and starts running all the required tests, because safety is important kids, even after the trip was made. When he is satisfied with the results being shown by his pretend Viper, he steps outside and makes his way towards Cidra's Viper "Congratulations on a job well done. How did you feel out there?" Because of course, he thinks that it's important that there's open communication between teacher and student, to clarify doubts or simply to share thoughts.

"A bit like a borrower rather than an owner. As I generally do when flying a Viper," Cidra says. "Not quite so much in the sims, but the principle carries over." She slips out of her pod when she's done with her post-flight, regarding Wade steadily. "So. What did I do wrong?"

Wade thinks for a moment after her question, and it really is hard for a person that is not an instructor, to see what others do wrong. "Well, you trusted only on your visuals at first and didn't check your instruments to find enemy contacts. You gotta trust your eyes, yes, but the instruments are there to help us out." Then again, it might have been that they popped out right after she spoke "Second, you were keeping certain distance from me, it was within regulations and that's….ok. But you know, that distance makes me feel that you are not at ease. It's a matter of trust with your wingman, your wingman needs to know what you are thinking, just like you need to know what he/she is thinking" He clears his throat and then finishes with "As for the rest, I think it was ok. You followed command, stayed with me when needed and maneuvered correctly"

Cidra takes all that in inscrutably. As she is wont to take things. "You do not follow your lead in the field, or you get them and yourself killed. I do hope I have that much wisdom," she says dryly. "As for the rest…generally correct. And not far from what my instructor at Picon Fleet Headquarters did say to me. Not bad, Drips. Not bad at all. Now. Let us see if you can spot something more interesting. Take a look at the recebt flight footage from the CAPs of our latest round of newly commissioned Vipers. Logue and Devlin. See if you can pick up anything that might help them improve. Look upon it as an exercise for yourself, not a chance to poke holes in them. "

Wade listens to Cidra with full attention. Her first words make him slap himself across the face but he stops himself from doing that "Agreed, Agreed." says the man, nodding at that. After this, he smiles a little after receiving good comments and he nods "Thank you Major, I appreciate that" Now, he clears his throat and presses his lips together, running his fingers over his chin "Devlin and Logue, ok. I'll make sure to sit down and watch their footage, see if I spot anything and then report back to you with comments." He smiles just a little bit more now, pleased with how things went.

"Very good. If you pick up anything perceptive, perhaps you can go over it with them yourself. With Poppy as well, of course. Good session, Drips. Dismissed." And with that, Cidra heads to reset the machines for whoever has the room reserved next.

Wade nods to Cidra "Will do" He clears his throat and then smiles for the woman "Thank you for your time" With that said, he stands straight and salutes "Major" He nods firmly and turns around, leaving. Destination? Probably CAP at this moment.

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