AWD #304 - Hitting The Deck Running
Hitting The Deck Running
Summary: Log Summary
Date: 21/04/2016 (OOC Date)
Related Logs: None
Petra Epiphany 
Map Room - Deck 2 - Battlestar Orion
Dominating the room is the large bottom-lit map table in the very center. Ten feet across and eight feet the other way, the table can gather a large number of people around it while still accommodating enlisted and support personnel in the small riser seating behind the table. The risers are done in single-piece desk sections that run the width of the seating area and have small reporting displays built into them along with communications ports for headphones. At the head of the room are two very large LED displays that can have almost anything put on them, including projections of what is on the map table. A single computer at the support seating controls this and in the rear of the room is a large, locked case that holds maps and table models.

Second shift started a couple of hours ago, and while the TACCO might have been across the hall for that, things have calmed back down into relative routine, meaning the colonel has slipped back into 'his office' where he has that coffee that can make dead tissue twitch, sitting in a pot. At this particular moment, the hatch is half open with just the token MP out in the corridor, while Petra is leaning on the map table on both hands, staring at one of the many battered maps of the Helios systems, where some worlds still bear smudged grease pencil marks, Picon itself still bearing dark smudges from the invasion eons ago, and a few coffee mug stains on the corners. A clipboard with scribbled notes rests somewhere near his right hand while he takes a deep breath and lets it go in a sigh, muttering, "…you rat bastards gonna be hiding."

He said Map Room. With a wishlist. Epiphany lives to serve. At least the proper folks in the proper places. The woman is trying to find where she 'fits' in and is learning it's a lot harder the older you get. The younger sorts just run out for a few drinks in a corridor or down at Charlie's, but it's a bit harder for a Captain to do that. Especially one who spend so long at the Academy, teaching. She had to stay rigid at all turns. Those kids were fresh out of Academy by the time they got to her. Couldn't let bad habits begin too quickly.

The clipboard she holds is tapped against the frame before she slides through the hatch. "Sir." It's the same board as the day before, but it has a few more pages on it now. Some are looking a bit worn 'round the edges.

Petra lifts his head and turns it to look at the hatch at the tap, arching a brow until he sees who it is. Clearing his throat, he nods, "Captain. Kick the hatch closed behind you. C'mon in." Slowly he straightens up and tugs on the blues vest to sraighten it, reaching for his coffee mug after he does so, "Meant to make it over to the sims when I heard they were running, but Im getting back into the swing of things. The old man says you're one of the new group we got back from Picon and Spree's group, right? You been an instructor before?"

Door closed. Epiphany's cheek quivers. Briefly. Faintly. Just the slightest tic. The woman doesn't kick it closed, however, she just pushes it closed. No mention to change the light above the door, so that remains as-is. So it's not so important as to refuse any interruptions. Her own blues have those starched, awkward lines of 'new' still. The joys of being one of the resistance sorts. "Aye, sir. I was with the flight school out of Caprica. Just so happened to be leading a training flight over Picon when the Cylons hit."

Petra mmms softly and nods, "There's a lot of that. Say about half of the crew we have right now got amazingly lucky on that day. So far, that luck is holding." He pauses there to look her over for a moment, then nods at…well, something, glancing back at the table before returning his attention to her, "Your background will help out, because I imagine we're going to be seeing an awful lot of new fish, especially since fleet has faced the reality that we dont have time to wait on a flight academy anymore. Its going to start being less 'did you take the required training' and more 'can you fly without getting you and your wingmates killed?'. Last I checked, you're one of the few ranking vipers I have on the boat. Until the dust settles, I'm going to start leaning on you and those Captain pins. I sure as hell can't run the air wing myself, or any other department on this boat - we'll never get anything done. So for the moment, it's you, and we're going to see how you handle it. Unless something goes completely tits up, I'm going to need a Cag and a couple squadron leaders and you're looking peachy for one of those." He pauses again and takes a deep breath, "Not to hit you with the whole damned shithouse on your first week, but then this ain't theory at fleet. You up for this Captain?"

There's a glance to the clipboard as Petra speaks and Epiphany's mouth pulls. He must have pinged on something already written there. The woman moves nearer the map table as she listens, but there is a glance to the coffee. Like many, she has a penchant for it… and spent far too long without. But then he's saying something about needing her and her pins. "What." Give it another moment. Oh. The woman clears her throat faintly, lifting a hand to run fingers through hair that is… braided. Well there goes the image of someone all put together. Now her hair looks worse than if it'd been in a helmet the past four hours. "Of course, sir." Beat, glance to clipboard. "Those rooks were something I intended to speak about. I've had a couple talks with Ensign Wescott already and there were a handful of civilians I trained into birds at Crandall before I was called up. I'm betting they may be heading our way soon, too… I was considering recommending having some of them shadow naval officers for part of their duties. It's no OCS, but it might help them understand the bits and bobs beyond just working a stick."

Petra rubs his fingertips in a slow circle over the papers on the clipboard, while he listens, studying the Captain's face. Maybe it's just psychosomatic, but with her hand in her hair, he finally reaches up to rub over his scalp with both of his, massaging the tattoos and burn marks for a moment. When his hands drop, he even offers a faint smile, "That's actually not a bad idea. They'll pick up some of our bad habits, but the Orion's probably the best example of a crew that still has most of its act together and isnt completely flying by the seat of our collective pants. Anyone gives you issue, just tell them I signed off on it and they can come talk to me if they got a problem with it. They should be used to it by now. As for potential new arrivals…I know Spree thinks she's going to get hit any day, so they might be slow in coming. She's convinced we're going to leave her high and dry when we head off to hit another target, and I don't blame her…she's got a lot more to cover for than she had planned on when we first arrived." With that said, he pauses, and eyes the clipboard in her arm, "So. Since you've had all of what…three days…on my boat, what can I try to get you that's going to make it easier to get our pilots ready to take out toasters?"

"And we pilots have worse habits, sir." There's even a slight smile. Epiphany knows. And she knows that he knows, too. "The naval officers live it, day in and out. From the behavior to the paperwork. And considering they're likely to be jonesin' for promotions soon enough, they need to learn the downsides to the job." Like reports. So many reports. Epiphany glances down to her clipboard, shifting her shoulder slightly. "I don't blame Spree, either. Picon's not a fun place to be. Even after the Orion showed up." There is appreciation there, for that. If Spree hadn't felt confident enough to put out radio comms to the planet, Arrington and her remaining students would still be out there. "The fake-OCS was the first thing. Honestly, I need more time with the Wing to know what they need other than more bodies." Which is everywhere on the battlestar. "What I did manage, however, was to catch two crewmen on the deck and talk to them. One request is easy enough. Pilots aren't being thorough enough with their post-flights and problems aren't getting caught soon enough. I understand some things go missing in stressful times, but all they need is a good reminder at what can go wrong if they forget to report something." Surely there's some guncam of some poor sot's ship going to pieces.

"The other thing, sir," Goose is looking back up to Petra. "Requires your sign-off. Deck needs tools and considering them having what they need keeps us in the air, I'm willing to back it. I'd like to request that recon crews that hit planets or ships be given a list, decided by the Chief, of things to look out for."

Petra keeps quiet while Epiphany speaks, shifting his weight to lean a hip against the table and slowly fold his arms over his chest. His eyes return to studying her face, as if trying to get a read on her while she talks about the situation and Spree. He lightly sucks on a tooth when she talks about post flight checks, and nods slowly in agreement, still not interrupting. Its not until after she's talking about stuff to look for with recons that he takes in a deep breath and offers, "The recon flights we plan on sending out this week probably are not going to touch down - we need intel on the Cylon's current situation on the other colonies, as we're considering where to hit them next. We're also prepping to hit them where it's going to hurt, and take some of their momentum away from them, so some of our veteran pilots may get taken offline for a week while Linten and a couple of light cruisers go on a…special mission. However…" He pauses there and takes in a deep breath, "We might have a present right in time for Saturnalia. The Major recently pointed out that Ragnar Anchorage was hardened against this sort of thing and has some passive defenses that don't depend on computers that can be linked to. We might…MIGHT…have an entire Anchorage worth of supplies, ammo, and equipment just waiting there like a godsdamned package waiting for us to show up. So keep your fingers and toes crossed for that. In the meantime, absolutely…we've been in scavenge mode for a while, we won't be taking anything for granted any time soon." Another pause, "Anything else you can think of so far?"

"I told the crewmen that I couldn't make any promises. Scavenging is dicey as it is. But if any marines and pilots know what to look for, it could help." Epiphany makes a note after fishing a pen out of her pocket. Likely to go to the Chief and get a detailed list. Probably with photos to help the sorts that don't know the difference between this or that wrench. But the talk of Ragnar, well. That gets her attention. "That could be a frakkin' boon to the whole damn fleet, sir. I may even say a prayer." She does fall quiet, looking thoughtful. The woman has a few tells, but not many. One of those who bottled everything up after the Cylons attacked, likely. Folks seem to go one of two ways, for the most part. Overly emotional or they just try to disconnect altogether. She operates largely on autopilot. "Not at the moment, sir. Might talk to whoever you choose as CAG about staggering pairings. Orion's been through a lot and it's clear they see us transfers as an invasion. I don't blame them. We're all taking bunks that their friends and partners used to occupy. I can suggest rec time spent together all I want, but I can't force it. But maybe pairing up the odd new pilot with the old ECO or making CAP pairings of old and new would do the trick. They're professionals, in the end, and often that gets past the hangups."

Petra grunts softly when the talk of crew invasion comes up, "They'll deal with it. I might have been off babying a buncha nukes for the last 6 months, but the crew knows the old man and I aren't going to stand for that shit on this boat." There IS an XO, right? "But you're right, we'll be staggering the assignments out so people dont clique up. If they've been a pilot here for more than a couple weeks, they know the high school social shit gets left on the deck. We cover each other's asses or people die, and I dont plan on hosting another funeral anytime soon. As for the crew…you know we have two defectors on this ship, right?"

There is a slight shift in Epiphany's mien. It's clear she's not so keen on the division, herself. So to get that backup from the Colonel? It's a good thing. But then he mentions the defectors and her expression tightens. The edge of the clipboard is tapped against the edge of the map table. "I was debriefed." Which means it was cut and dry. "I've met the Six. First day aboard, actually." Her tone has gone a bit flat, as well. "Still trying to process that, to be honest, sir."

Petra nods once at that, "We have an eleven as well. She's a scientist, so probably wont run into her much since we pretty much keep her working on stuff she's good at…and it keeps random problems from arising. Suffice it to say not everyone agrees with our decision to allow these two to remain active. It WAS three, but Ceres was shot down and killed when her raptor was blown out of the sky on a prisoner run, in Picon's aftermath. Dont even get me started on that asshole Bancroft." He winces a little, then sighs, "You might catch Knox around from time to time. He does his job, and to be honest, he's the reason we had any warning at all the initial attack was coming. So you don't have to be his friend, but we know he's on our side. You hear any grumbling that sounds like it's going to get out of hand, you let me know. Dissent in the ranks isn't going to help anyone, and both Knox and Naomi know they arent in the running from prom king and queen here."

One final tap and the board stays in place. "I already gathered there's… dissent. And I can't say I blame them. Dealt with too many Sixes on Picon, myself. We talked. It was civil." There's that sort of natural curiousity to Epiphany. The sort that says she might have been a scientist herself if things had been different. Or if her test scores had been good enough. Instead she's a Viper jock. One of the older ones, at this point. "But I'll make sure anyone coming in fresh to the Wing from Crandall knows to stuff it. Command says these two are on our side, we go with that." Until they aren't. The Captain's gaze shifts to the able. "Mind if I ask about the plans for those cruisers? Do you have a set of names already pulled?"

Petra nods in slow agreement with the first, his gaze shifting to the table, then shakes his head, "Other than the COs and CIC staff, no, no one's been chosen yet. Im waiting on the Major to make some decisions first and get me more information, then we start deciding who's going and when." He pauses, then returns his attention to her, "That's most of my job. I need Department Heads that are going to get me the information I need to make decisions on what the Fleet and this boat out to be doing. Fleet decisions get bubbled up to the old man to sign off on, stuff for the Orion I pretty much go with and he chews my ass out when I screw up…which doesn't happen often, thankfully." There's a small smirk at that, but just a faint one, "When we get to that stage, we'll be talking again. Im not going to grab birds off the flight deck without agreement on who is going and who is staying. Not crippling one to bolster the other. We will find a balance. Fair enough?"

If she's disappointed to not hear more, Epiphany doesn't show it. Perhaps it's more or less what she expected. "Fair enough. Just remember that not all the pilots transferred from Crandall are rooks." Or barely Ensigns. A pause and she does manage a bit of a smile, herself. "And that's not counting me, sir, though I have to admit a mission has a certain measure of appeal. Something constructive, active, with birds that actually work how they should."

Petra mms, "Oh, I get that. That's why we'll be talking before any decisions are going to be made. I'm going to need to hear how good some people are before I add names to the list. Just because you've been in the fleet for 10 years doesn't mean you blow up toasters well…and the new guy with only six months under their belt might just be Ares' gift to war, you know?" He pauses there for a moment, then nods to himself, "You'll have birds that fly well, Captain. We can't be the tip of the spear if we dont sharpen the blade for you. The viper factory on this boat works, so new planes are something you should see often around here. Alright. Unless there's something else, I'm not going to take up any more of your time, Captain. Are we good for now?"

"If you want, sir, I'll continue running simulator sessions. If you have anything in particular you want me to put these pilots up against, just let me know. Any standouts, I'll pass their name your way." It's at least something Epiphany knows how to do well. Test people. Improve them. She does shake her head at the last, gathering up the clipboard in her arms and taking a step back away from the map table in preparation for departure. "We are, sir. Thank you. Anything you need from the Wing for now, I'll see what I can do."

Petra hrms, "I wish I had something more concrete to give you there. All I can suggest right now is possibly scenarios concerning close air support on a mobile fleet. Defending a cruiser that's needing to spool up and leave in a hurry, meaning fighting to the last second then getting your ass back on deck at high speed before you get left. That sort of thing?" Another faint, wan smile is offered, not bothering with a salute, just a nod, "Good luck then, Captain. Let me know if anything comes up before we talk again."

"I think I can do something with that. Might be time to do some landing drills." Epiphany takes another step back before turning to depart. "I will, sir. Hopefully if something does come up, it's of the not-bad variety." Then she's pulling the hatch open and disappearing out into the corridor.

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