Location: Commander's Quarters
Timeline: Backpost PCH-16 1430 Hours
The morning after the night before was always a trying one, but the night before in this scenario had been a pretty hellish one. Not only had they come close to their first major engagement with the Cylons in days, but the entire Air Group had been grounded (save for those ships now on round the clock CAP) and a traitor had seemingly been discovered in their midst. Whilst repairs were apparently underway thanks to the efforts of Captain Kenly and his engineers, the fleet was significantly weaker and the Commander hoped, prayed even, that the Cylons wouldn't be showing up anytime soon.
Thankfully, the team had managed to plan a ruse that had caught the real traitor and the man, Petty Officer Weiss, was now locked away in the very cell that they had locked Arrius up in. For her part, the Civilian had played a blinder.
With all that in mind, the Commander had summoned his XO to his quarters, as well as the CAG and had set up a strategy call to the Commander of the Achilles. With the phone on loudspeaker so Kendall and Graystone could hear, the Commander began.
"Major Wolf, status of your pilots?" the Commander queried.
There was some silence until the female voice of the Achilles' commander spoke out. "Tired sir. Many of them have spent hours in the cockpit. We could do with rotating some over from Solaria until the Solaria wing is active again," the woman asked.
"Captain. How long until we can get some more Vipers in the air and start rotating the CAP?" Hanson queried, looking across the desk at the CAG.
Alethea looked up following the question. "At this point my pilots are ready to move on a minute's notice and quite frankly itching to get back. As soon as we get the all clear on the Vipers we can move."
"We'll land your birds on Solaria and rotate the pilots out," Hanson told as he looked at the CAG and gave her a look of 'see that it is done'. He then changed the subject to the matter at hand. "Doctor O'Hare has given the all clear for our interrogation of Petty Officer Weiss to begin," the Commander revealed as he looked at the XO. "I'm going to assign Colonel Kendall and Captain Graystone to the interrogation team. Everyone needs to be vigilant during the next few days," he warned.
Alethea might have only just met the Commander but she had a pretty good sense of what that look meant and knew even if it was going to be hard it needed to be done. Luckily she had just the right pilots in mind. When the conversation shifted to interrogation she had to admit she was quite fond of getting to explore that side of her duty a bit more. "Of course Commander, what are our parameters for the use of coercive measures?"
"Commander, please tell me we are not talking about torture here," the female voice from the other end of the radio interjected, a tone of concern in her voice.
"We will do what we need to in order to get answers," Hanson instructed in his matter of fact way before looking at Graystone. "I want him alive and I want him well. If the public catch wind that we are torturing people, things will not go well. We're on borrowed time with the Freighter Captain as it is," the old man reminded them all. "I want to know what his objective was, whether he was working alone and what other plans he had."
Alethea nodded. "Of course, Commander. He will only be harmed as much as absolutely needed"
"Let's remember this man is a traitor. It's all well and good to be concerned, but this is war. It's more important for us to get the information we need and save lives then to make him comfortable." Amaris stated matter-of-factly as she steepled her fingers. "In the meantime, I recommend we clear the immediate area around the brig of all non-essential personnel. Marines can keep a secret in a crunch."
“We find a way to get the information we need, but we do not torture this man to within an inch of his life. We are not Cylons. I want him alive and I want him well,” the Commander reiterated firmly. “We can do the clear out but only where necessary.”
"If I may, we might want to withhold from that even near the Brig. The press within the fleet is no less capable than it was on the Colonies and when they find out it will motivate them that much to dig deeper. We can trust the rest of the crew as well to keep a secret and short of every security precaution failing I can't see the prisoner escaping from the Brig and the walls are properly isolated," Alethea argued.
"I'll leave that up to you two," Hanson shrugged as his eyes flitted between the two women. "Major Wolf, Captain Kovak. We'll keep you up to date on anything that comes from the interrogation. For now, give your people a bit of a rest," the Commander instructed, conscious that Achilles had taken the brunt of the leg work over the last 24 hours.
"Much appreciated, sir." Kovak's voice blared in response over the speaker phone. He was still frustrated that they needed to be rescued, but there was nothing definitive to say about that. "Are we sure the virus has been cleared from all of our vipers now?"
"Kilmartin has been working with Captain Kenly and, with the advice of Doctor Arrius, they have been able to purge the majority of the affected Vipers. There are still a handful to be done, but once the Chief of the Deck gives them a once over, we can get them back in the air." Hanson revealed as he pulled out a chair at his desk and sat down.
"Forgive me, sir, but we don't even know if the perpetrator was acting alone. Has there been wind of any other sabotage in the fleet?"
"There's been nothing reported," the Commander responded, "not so much as a broken toilet," he smirked as he looked at the mornings reports on the nearby clipboard. "I have no idea what he was doing or why, but the Colonel will find out."
"Don't check out completely over there, Wolf." Amaris responded, her tone suggesting that she expected such a thing. "We won't know what we're working with until we extract all the information we need. The worst thing for us is to be caught off guard again."
"Thank you for the advice Colonel," an irritated Wolf responded. "Achilles will be ready for whatever transpires, if anything."
"Right, well we all have stuff to be getting on with," Hanson remarked as his brief rest on the chair came to an end and he stood up again. "Major, we'll be in touch. Hanson out." and with that, the Commander pressed a button that terminated the call. He turned and looked at the two women from his own command. "Every bit of information, ladies. Every. Single. Bit." he instructed sternly.
Colonel Kendall stood up as well; she knew exactly what that meant. She looked at him seriously. "Aye, sir."
While Alethea did miss the Achilles and drinking with Kovak, she had to admit the feud between Kendall and Wolf made up for all of it. It seemed clear they thought alike in more ways than one. "Yes, sir" she responded to the explicit instructions of the Commander.
"Dismissed," Mitch instructed as he walked over to his coffee table and poured himself a glass of water. There was much for him to think about.