AWD #306: Easier Than Herding Cats
Easier Than Herding Cats
Summary: Knox brings Epiphany a proposal for a joint training exercise.
Date: 23/04/2016 (OOC Date)
Related Logs: Requests Come in Threes
Epiphany Knox 
Ready Room
Capable of seating every member of the wing with space to spare in its stadium organization, the Ready Room has more than two hundred seats and is the largest room on the ship dedicated to single briefings. Sections of desks were manufactured specifically for this and wrap the width of each level of seating, rolling leather seats positioned at even points through each row. The head of the room has a small dais with a podium for the briefer and on the wall behind it are a pair of large LCD screens. The walls have the tenant squadrons' patches painted on individual panels as well as a Kill Board up to the left side of the dais and podium, the Training Board on the other side to log progress.
AWD #306

It's the no man's land as Dog finalizes the handoff to the lucky sots who get more normalized hours. Not that it really matters much in space. It really just means the difference when you're going landside or want to rub elbows with the more important folks. The Ready Room is quiet and dimly lit, but not empty. Anyone seeking the recently transferred Viper Captain will have been told she was heading that direction and lo and behold, fresh coffee in hand, there Arrington be.

"Just any that stands out. I know there's a lot of it, but I'm looking for the clear examples. Both notable and showcasing proper form." The ElTee Epiphany is speaking to doesn't seem entirely keen on whatever he's been asked, but he mutters his understanding nonetheless before heading out. It leaves the brunette to find one of the chairs to settle into, dropping a binder and clipboard both upon the desk before it and her coffee soon after… but not before taking a long drink of it. She's in her blues, freshly showered, but also looking a touch still on the sleep addled side.

The Marine sneaks in past the departing eltee and does his best to stay to the shadows. He wears an off-design set of cammies typically used by the rest of the JTAC teams. All his patches are in place, though, and he seems to be comfortable in what he's wearing. He's got his own thermos with him, but its sealed. "Hey Captain," that quiet voice greets as he approaches. "Tough getting used to sleeping on a Battlestar, am I right, sir?" he smiles, seeming to understand while approaching the desk.

"I've actually never been all that good at sleep in general," Epiphany admits, glancing up to Knox. At least there's a measure less of that disconcerted look as she regards the JTAC. And yet, something about her remains guarded. Like that itch that runs so deep that you can't do anything better than be uncomfortable until it decides to go away. "Demeter's CAG liked to say some folks just aren't wired for it." With the podium and screens dark, while only the necessary of the other lighting in the room remains on, it takes on a sort of cavernous feel. The pilot flips open the binder to a particular set of pages and tosses the clipboard over one side. "What can I do for you, Sergeant?" The coffee is picked back up and sipped at as she waits.

"Me either. First few years I didn't even need sleep. The longer I live like this, the more I've found I need it. I guess my head needs to resolve things out more and more, just like anyone else. Like your CAG said, though, I'm just not wired for it." Knox knows damned well he just made a joke at his own expense. He sips the coffee with a grin, looking at her over the brim. Yep. Nothing to see here except a cheeky Marine. "I'm here semi-officially, actually. To be blunt, Captain, I don't have much confidence in the current CAG and you're new. I want to give you the chance to see about putting something together." Another sip and he moves to lean against the wall. That voice stays quiet and conversational. "We've got a lot of new pilots and crews. I've also just acquired a trained JTAC for my squad. How would you feel about getting some of the crews together and dropping some iron and making sure everyone is up to snuff, sir?"

There's no answering grin, but there is an upward twitch of eyebrow. It might be the closest he's going to get at the moment. It's clear that Epiphany still doesn't quite know what to make of the resident 'friendly' skinjob, but she's putting in a fair effort. More than some of the folks who have been dealing with it much longer, if ship chatter is to be believed. Or even 'directly to the Captain's face' chatter. Oh, deckies. When he mentions his lack of confidence in the current CAG, she snorts faintly.

"Between you and me, I think that's a common sentiment. I believe the Colonel may be looking to move some people around." Epiphany's picked up the pen and she points it at Knox. "You did not hear that from me, but if there's any rumblings of discontent from the marines towards the air wing, I could perhaps look over word getting out if it kept trouble from stirring." Gossip can be put to good use sometimes. She leans back in the chair, eyes on the Sergeant rather than the work she brought out for herself. "I've been largely designing simulations to run in advance of some possible operations, but live training operations are even better. Doesn't matter how well the simulation is programmed, those digital marines just never seem to be quite as mouthy as I'd expect." That was a joke, right? It was delivered almost deadpan. "Do you have anything specific in mind?"

"I don't think there's much looking. The Marines are getting new people and shifting out old ones. I think they're trying to mix the crews, sir. Get experience spread out rather than focused. My guess is that anyone they leave in place on Orion is here because they have something valuable to impart." Coop manages to say it without sounding like he's a pompous dick, too. Just a casual observation. Her questions has him nod once. "We've got several thousand square miles sectioned off as a bombing range on P. It's owned by the Marines but its for aircraft training. Captain Amos, our Marine S3, has pretty much given me carte blanche to open it up and get you all in there — if that's something you all want. It sounds like that might be what you all need. Get you all used to working laser guided bombs and missiles again. Think its workable Captain?"

"I think mixing the crews is a good idea, but I may be biased. Being one of the outsiders and all." Epiphany downs another bit of her coffee before setting the mug down. Her pen is picked up and twisted through fingers in that fashion that so many officers pick up during their Academy days. "Those of us coming in from Crandall are just getting used to properly working birds, Sergeant. Being able to play around with missiles? That'll be like throwing them a party. Most of them haven't had proper groundpounders to relay with in months. No substitution for the real thing." She's admitting, without directly saying it, that no simulation is going to properly emulate marines. Two different beasts. "Draft up some scenarios. I'll manage the air side and get any final sign-off from the Colonel. He's given me the reins to do about anything needed to get everyone ramped up for new operations, so this sounds about perfect."

"I know a lot of people don't agree but I think it is for the best. The experience this crew has is too valuable to keep in one place. Plus it provides us the opportunity to swap out people who are approaching breaking point for the stressors of too much time out there." Knox seems to well understand the pressure a combat environment puts on people. Particularly behind the lines. The part about missiles has him nod. "No problem. I'll get permission to crack the bunkers on P and get us the cold storage munitions, then hit Deck about it. I can talk to some of your pilots, too, if you want. Some of your experienced folks will be just fine, though. If they've been on the ship a bit, they know my voice well, sir." There's another sip to the thermos. "Any requests for types and style?"

"You're not concerned with the people coming in from Picon who really have it out for someone with your face?" The pen twists around a few fingers as Epiphany watches Knox. Judging the response, perhaps. Or simply truly curious. "The powers that be are making it quite clear that you're one of us, but we know how good people are at following orders to a Tee." She talks more with him than others, so far, but it's not an open thing. There's no revelations of self. If anything, it's guiding. The woman truly is doing her best to fight against her own prejudice and get an understanding of the humanoid cylon.

"Let's give some of these folks time in a Predator. I've got at least one who has trained for it, but never been behind the controls of the real thing and there's others who have gotten pretty upset at me for designing scenarios that would be easily solved with one, but giving them a Raptor instead." Does she seem shamed about giving the Air Wing 'work with what you've got' simulations? Newp. Not one bit. "Let's talk to a Corpsman or two about adding some hot zone evacs to it also. I've got a feeling we may be seeing some of that in the not too distant future."

"Sir, as an air-to-ground specialist, I've got a lot I can share and impart. How to run a wing is something I'm dense to. Whatever you need to do. I'll se up some targets, you all figure out how to hit them." Knox seems to mean it. The guy might have his opinions and comments about the wing, or even suggestions, but he's an Enlisted Sergeant talking to a Captain. Hell to the No. "I'll talk to the Corpsman and Deck. Probably Petra, too. Get some ships ready. I'll get a couple gunships armed. I know the Deck Gang loves to play as door gunners."

"I'm not running the wing, Sergeant." There might be a hint of 'yet' there, in a way that shows Epiphany is still processing the possibility. Having the TACCO drop that at your feet with little warning is something that takes time to adapt to. "I'm just putting my background as an instructor to use to make sure people are at their best when needed." The wheels on the chair rattle against the flooring as the pilot moves in closer to the desk, flipping to a blank sheet on her clipboard. A few notes are jotted down. "We'll get the Raptor pilots kitted out either as med evac or with door gunners and put some of the jocks behind the controls of a Predator. Think you can set up something to make use of that, Sergeant?"

"Right, sir. And I'm just a JTAC imparting my skills to others." The Cylon smiles a little. "We both have our roles to play in whatever this is, sir. Rising star in the wing or not. I don't think we get a say in what we become anymore." The guy looks down at his thermos before sipping the coffee within. Looking back, he moves off the wall. "Aye, sir. I can make it happen. I'll pull the training guns for anti-air. We'll pucker some butts, Cap."

The older woman just sort of snorts faintly. There's a few more notes put down before she sets aside the pen and picks up her mug. A long sip and she tilts her head in a nod. "Let me know when you think you'll have the field ready and I'll get the Wing's schedules adjusted and the pairing assignments up." It gives her time, too, to go through personnel files and find out who works poorly together in a way that can be improved… and who would be just a bad chemical reaction if made to ride together. Epiphany purses her lips briefly as she turns the mug on the desk, idly, after setting it down. "If you find yourself with any trouble from the recent transfers, at least in the Wing, come talk to me, Knox."

"Should be a week or so. I need to mostly get targets built and process paperwork. Seems when a Cylon wants access to weapons, people get nervous. Who knew?" Knox shrugs and recaps the thermos. "Ayeaye, sir. Amos told me the same thing - anyone new gives me trouble, call him. He'll show up with a rifle platoon. I'll try to keep out of trouble for everyone's sake." He taps the thermos lightly to his temple in salute. "Good luck with the cat herding, Captain," is offered as he moves for the door.

"Just send word once you have a firm date. A week gives me time to start pulling names." Epiphany tilts her head in answer to the salute. Casual enough, but at least acknowledging the gesture. She waves after him with a pen. There's just one final comment left before she's turning to her work. "Herding cats is easier, Sergeant."

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