MD #155: Strike Briefing
Strike Briefing
Summary: Rance briefs the Orion Crew on a daring raid to Aerlion
Date: Sun 10/Sep/2017 (OOC Date)
Related Logs: None
Rance Randy Palermo Niko Fischer 
Toby Samtara Scott Casey Idris 
Lleufer Diaz Elena Becker Kar 
Ready Room - Deck 2 - Battlestar Orion
Capable of seating every member of the wing with space to spare in its stadium organization, the Ready Room has more than two hundred fifty 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. Each seat has a display screen in front of it, controlled at the front, with a small printer to give paper copies of what is on the screen. 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 ceiling has a projector with the ability to display a large holographic image behind the speaker. 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. At the rear of the room is a banner display with many photos of the Second Cylon War.
28/Mar/2049 (IC Date)

There's a heavy presence here for the briefing and there's no small mixture of enlisted and officers. Colonels down to Petty Officers from the Deck. Then there's also Marines. This is most of the section heads from the Wing and Marines, plus Deck, and then whomever else could pack in with the other department heads. The lights are already low and nobody can really make out who is in charge up front except that there's Rance Hood, the Seven, leaning on the podium. The man clearly doesn't down anything nicer than jeans and junky t-shirts. There isn't even an attempt to come his long hair, no, it is just kept out of his eyes by a ballcap. Behind him the HD flatscreens are turned on but displaying two words 'Operation' and 'Buccaneer'. There's a Jolly Roger flag graphic waving on the third screen in the line. "Welcome welcome, take your seats," he calls out, "yes, I will be conducting your briefing. Atypical briefer for an atypical mission. For those of you that don't know me, I'm Rance Hood. I'm retired Marine Staff Sergeant attached to MARSOC and I was the first Seven to defect during the Second War. Some of ya'll know me. Some don't. Figure at this point it don't matter and ya'll are gonna listen because I think you guys are gonna like this. Commander Petra seemed more than a little tickled so I'll take that as a good sign. I'll give ya'll a few moments to get settled and then we'll go. Hey! Marv! Kill the lights!"

Randy tries to drop into the meeting and keep a low profile. She's small and she's a Private now, so that should be easy /right/? Maybe for a moment or two, but she only needs it to last until the briefing starts. And there it is. She stands in one of the aisles with her arms folded at her chest as she listens to Rance getting the meeting going.

Dropping into a seat near Randy, and carrying with her a notepad and pen, Renee eyes the room to take in the total head count then faces forward again.

The CAG is down front in his blues, seated with datapad at the ready. He's tried to organize the squadron commanders to come claim the best seats for the wing beforehand, but doesn't get hung up over who sits where in the end. The greying Colonel can't quite stifle a chuckle when he sees who is giving the briefing. Senior officers are supposed to be keeping it serious. Well, whatever this op turns out to be, at least it won't be boring. So he grins to himself and settles back, waiting to see what it is the Seven has to say.

Fischer steps in, steps a bit slow as he looks around the room. A brief nod is offered to Rance, before he moves to find himself a seat, frowning a little as he focuses on the front, after dropping down into the seat.

As people file in for the briefing Toby amuses himself with trying to find anyone a) Older than him, or B) a lower rank. Simple things. There's no seats near the back but on dint of his age he manages to turf out a young and naive PO from aircraft handling and settle himself down for what he hopes will be an interesting meeting. If a meeting can ever truly be described as interesting that is. He clocks Randy's entrance and makes a mental note that she appears at least in someway to be back, then turns to face the Seven as he starts to talk.

Sam is seated with several other medical personnel, the ships CMO has her datapad in one hand, a cup of coffee in the other. That's as prepared as it gets, as far as the surgeon is concerned, when she isn't the one having to do the talking.

Slow steps. That's how Scott gets inside, dropping into his usual seat and leaning back a bit. "Ah," he mutters to himself as he looks to the front. Expression slightly curious, as he waits for the briefing to really start.

Casey is seated near the back of the Ready Room, well away from the senior officers, but she got a seat which is a success all its own. She's got her tablet but anyone to her left or right would realize that she's just playing some card game on it lazily.

Idris arrived early and claimed a seat down by his CAG, keeping a close eye out for those of his own pilots who can squeeze in. Captain Bloodfeather has a dataslate as well as a clipboard for old fashioned note taking. He doesn't know Rance and eyes the scruffy looking nerfherder dubiously but tips his head over to listen as Scytheg gives a chuckle. He too is in his blues, looking sharp as usual.

"Alright, let's kick this pig. Welcome to Operation Buccaneer! Ladies and gentlemen, we are going to be doing a bit more piracy, but this time it's a land raid. Aquaria was a fuzzy little warm-up exercise. Grab your eye patches and cutlasses because this one could get hot in all the ways that make our lives excitin'." Rance can't help grinning, knowing most of these people are used to fairly formal briefings. "We are going back on home, everyone. Aerilon is our target. Sure, they have a lot of food. They have a lot of fish. A lot of booze. But they have something else that some of your Second War vets might have even forgotten about." He presses a button on the slide. "This is Colonial Fleet Air Station Pless right after the First Cylon War." Leaning on the podium, he looks over his shoulder and uses the laser to gesture. "Please note this long-ass northwest-southeast taxiway that runs into the side of the mountain down here at this big concrete pad and the other roads running around it. "Pretty cool. So we're raiding an airbase or something?" he makes the sound like an incorrect answer buzzer. "Wrong! No, we are not raiding an airbase. But I'll tell you guys a secret. This base was designed to support the rapid deployment of what's in here." His laser bounces on the bottom of the screen, at the mountain where the pavement vanishes.
"During the Second Cylon War, Aerilon became such a problem child for the Cylons because the Colonials kept digging up these huge munitions and weapons bunkers that the Aerilonians had kept after the First War. They were supposed to destroy all the equipment as part of disarmament and, well, they decided that suggestion sucked. On Aerilon there are an estimated thirty-five munitions bunkers of various Classes, One through Four. One is the smallest and usually supports about a full division of Marines, including logistics. Class Four supports an entire Army Group, roughly sixty thousand troops plus attached air divisions. Each bunker is designed to hold all the gear plus necessary supporting equipment. Some of you remember a similar situation on Calumet?" Rance looks around. "Same idea, except the Calumetti didn't really pre-position so much as they stored crap. Anyone in this crowd who is from Aerilon will probably tell you that their own people are a little bit of cowboy." The smile holds. "Everything in this bunker is fully armed. The tanks have rounds in the battle-carry boxes and keys in the ignition. Guns need some oil but the magazines are loaded. Body armour is sorted by male and female, then size, and hanging on racks in plastic. Then that gets to the emergency supplies for things like disaster relief. At Class Four facilities there are amphibious landers and they are already loaded with a ton of gear, ready for take-off, and even more ready to be loaded on transports.""

Lleufer also arrived a bit early, and snagged a cup of strong black coffee on his way. The Master-at-Arms leans his butt up against a bulkhead rather than having taken a seat. Ynyr has a small paper notepad and pencil handy and lifts his cup to quietly greet Rance, who seems to be familiar to himself. Then he settles in to listen as well.

<OOC> Dropkick says, "recon shot referenced:"

Standing in the back of the room where the rest of the last-to-arrive pilots are gathered, Diaz is not the only one in the room who lets out a low whistle of appreciation as Rance begins to outline what exactly it is that they're pulling a raid on.

Elena is seated on the other side of the CAG. She leans over and whispers, "He probably had most of the room at booze," in a low, conspiratorial tone. The slight, redheaded DCAG is not known to be the heaviest of drinkers, but she's a veteran of the second war. She's been known to be a tippler. She shakes her head in slow disbelief as Rance outlines what all is in this bunker.

Beans? Are they going after more … no? Good. Beans are over rated anyway. Lleufer perks up his interest at mention of Aerilon, and several other points as Rance goes through his spiel. Ynyr sets his

Randy's eyes light up at the mention of booze, but when she /really/ starts paying attention is when Rance starts talking about things that go boom. Naturally. "Finally an Aerilon mission that isn't about those damned beans," she actually mumbles and pulls out her tablet to start taking notes. Old habit. Perhaps she's forgotten already someone's going to do that and just tell her where to go.

Casey doesn't seem to get excited at all. She looks up from her card game, then looks back down.

He taps the remote on the podium. "This is a Class Four. It was forgotten during the Second War. Myself and three others found this place purely on accident. Check out this next photo that was taken just before the Second War." He flickers a new one onto the screen. "If you can look closely you can see that the taxiways to the mountain are mostly gone and covered with grass. They're still there, but under foot. When the Lines and Cylons invaded, we didn't even look twice at it. Now keep this photo in mind because its going to be important." It stays on the screen, though. "As best I can surmise, everyone who knew about this bunker was killed on Warday. As far as I know, myself and the three other Lines are the only people who have been into the bunker in the last forty years. Its sealed and smells like ass, but it looks like the gear was kept well maintained right up until the Cylons landed. Our jobs are to get in there, find out what's worth takin, and then we're stealing it." Rance looks out at everyone. "We have departed the Colonies and these are people we can no longer help. The only people we can help are ourselves. They can have what we don't take, but we're taking everything we possibly can, including their kitchen sinks. More on that in a second."

Scott sits up a bit straighter at the mention of Aerilon, looking around briefly, as if looking for someone in particular, before he focuses back to the front. There's a brief momentary smile, as he listens even more attentively.

<OOC> Dropkick says, "Second referenced recon shot."

Captain Bloodfeather says nothing, but he is studying the airfield layouts up on the screen. He makes a note or two on his dataslate and reserves his questions for after the initial briefing.

Glancing sidelong at Randy, Palermo nudges her with the edge of one boot even as she's taking notes and eyeing the screen. She pauses at the last of his remarks and makes a small grimace, already trying to figure out a way to lay hands on more LAV or other armoured personnel carriers if there are any to be had.

Randy has a sudden oh-I-said-that-out-loud face, eyebrows arched slightly, mouth pursed shut. She looks sidelong down at Palermo and shifts her weight from one led to the other. Then she jots down a note or two about the layout in front of her.

When the aerial pictures come into play, Casey lifts her eyes to start paying attention more given this is the part that might actually pertain to her. Her card game can wait apparently.

Fischer raises an eyebrow at the mention of the kitchen sinks, but keeps quiet. All attention on the front, he keeps silent for now.

Having been part of the team that recovered the rhinos Toby now understands why he has an invite to this particular party. He doesn't take physical notes, but his attention is very much on the screen and what Rance has to say, particularly the lists of what they might expect to find. Spares. That’s what he wants. More body armour is fine, but crates of bolts would suit him more, not to mention more firesuits, more o-rings, and more lub-oil.

Lleufer grimaces at the part about not being able to help people on Aerion. He's still got nieces and nephews there, his brother's and sister's families. Assuming they are still alive. The Gunnery Sergeant doesn't look too happy and shifts his jaw, but continues to pay attention.

Niko gives Elena a side-eye and a half-grin for her comment, then tips his head toward Rance to try and redirect his DCAG. The Colonel seems to be listening with some interest now, and taking notes on his pad. There's a thoughtful frown as he starts scrolling through the Air Wing duty roster.

"This base no longer exists as we see it so I'll be briefing on the most accurate last photo we have of the base, the one on the screen. Runways, taxiways, everything is gone and looks like grassland." Rance stands off the podium and looks back to the screen. "Marines and Deck will HALO jump out of Rhinos and land at LZ Rickshaw Thursday night. From there we proceed under the cover of darkness down the non-existent taxiway to the bunker entrances, boxed in red. Deck will work their magic and Marines will assist them. Friday, Marines will recon the area, including the market. Marines will proceed, in disguise, into the market. We will trade everything we possibly can from them. We can't possibly take everything in the bunker so don't be afraid to trade a rifle for a couple pairs of shoes, but we need everything they have but nobody dies over getting these supplies. But, to be upfront, your families on the refugee ships will not survive a Winter without more clothing and supplies. Remember that. Now, this small township to the left? All built into the base facilities but like the market, the concrete ramps are gone. It’s just flat ground. We have no idea what the enemy situation is in this town, though." He then looks back to everyone. "Saturday, late, the Wing will move in with the Orion Battlestar Group and begin hitting air defence targets region-wide and attempting to bloody their noses on the fleets in orbit. Sunday morning, breakout. We launch everything that we have ready. Air Wing will land pilots at LZ Slade and we will drive you to the bunker and commence take-off procedures." He sniffs once and rubs at his nose. "Alrighty. Questions?"

Standing against the back wall, Polly Becker blanches. HALO jump? Fraaaaaak.

Speaking up from where she's seated, "Medical supplies need to be on the list along with everything else that's considered priority. Expired medication, antibiotics, vitamins, stuff like that? It's going to be tough to just decide on the spot what's worth it, what isn't. So keep an eye out for items that are shelf stable," Sam makes a point of saying this, just in case the option presents itself.

Randy raises her hand to ask a question, but first nods to Sam in recognition of her reminding them of the meds. "If Aerilon is Skath controlled is anyone going to want to even take guns as trade?"

Lleufer is now taking notes like a fiend, every little briefing detail he can, but especially as concerns the Marines. Special notations about the market portion of the op for Marines to kit up and carry in everything they can spare for trading. A faint nod to what Samtara says and Ynyr adds a note about that too. Then he looks up and raises a hand, "Rance, where do the Marines need to be for exfil and do we have a specific time to load, or TBA via coms?"

"Yeah, medical supplies are coming back with us. There's a lot of them in the bunker like this, including a field surgical hospital. But there's no way to take it with us." Rance keeps it quick for Samtara. Looking to Randy, he shrugs. "Guns are just one thing. There's two hundred thousand rifles in that mountain. But if you'd rather trade shoelaces or dental floss, you're welcome to it. Whatever works to get what we need." Then to Lleufer, "That will be up to the on-site commander. We can either exfil when the pilots land and take their places on the Raptors or we can ride out on the transports currently in the bunker." He waggles his finger. "You're on-site commander for Marine ops until further notice, by the way. Just FYI, buddy."

Sam's eyes light up at the mention of a field surgical hospital, though the light fades with a sigh as Rance immediately takes away the joy by saying it isn't possible to bring it back to ship.

Idris Bloodfeather too is taking down a few notes. The Viper Squadron Leader glances up from his dataslate and looks to Niko, then Rance, "I heard mention of tanks, but not aircraft." A pause as Rance then mentions Raptors, "Excellent." That fits in nicely with a previous meeting Airwing already had as to what they could manufacture and what they could not in air frames.

Niko waits to see how the first round of questions go before he chips in for the Wing. "I think he means our raptors that'll be taking down pilots," he says as an aside to Captain Bloodfeather. "This sounds like this is all ground pounder stuff. Which I guess we'll need too." Then the CAG stands up and turns to Rance to ask his question. "I'm guessing your plan involves jumping those assault landers out from low atmo? You got an estimate on number of ships stored there, Staff Sergeant?"

Toby cranes his neck around to see if Niamh is about, but he can't see her amongst the masses. Even though chances are she's here and he just can't see her he starts jotting down a list of everything he can think of that might be in such a cache that Deck might need. Once he has half a dozen or so he calls out in a lull, "how about technical supplies? Armours fine but no good if we don't have the tools and parts to keep things maintained. This mountain got parts, or just whole items?"

The Gunner Sergeant nods, "Understood." Lleufer isn't fazed by that at all. He just makes a few more notes and looks at the maps, thinking for a moment. He has more questions of his own but waits to let others have a chance to speak up first, rather than throwing too much at Rance all at once.

Fischer's eyes narrow a little in thought as he listens, not making any comments right now. Just watching the screens rather carefully for now.

"Actually Colonel, there's plenty of Vipers and Raptors in there. Some Rhinos, too. Seen them myself. Spare parts are already pre-loaded on some of the landers. Wing has a big stake in this, too." Rance doesn't bother even trying to hide the smile. "But actually, my plan is pretty much what you've heard. I'm not exactly a fabulous pilot so I'll let your men and women decide when they want to jump and how. As for numbers? Probably three full air wings. More than we can support and take, by a long shot. I couldn't guess how many amphibious landers." The contractor then looks to Toby and leans forward on the podium. "It does. Logistics and support for the equipment that is stored there. The Aerilonians planned to fight and hold out long after everyone else had quit. Tools, generic parts, you name it. But again, there's only so much we can take with us."

Elena pipes up. "How many ships are down there? We only have so many pilots, even with the Nuggets, and not all of them are cleared to fly."

"Staff, what about fuel reserves or access to same?" Palermo wonders as she looks up from the notes she's taking, smoothing one hand across the piece of paper as she does so. "We spool everything up that can lift off the deck to get it in orbit, we're going to need fuel. If we can take any of their armoured vehicles as well," and the marine lets a bit of a grin escape; no sense in dreaming small at this point. Dream big.

Lleufer shifts his weight, "I would hope, if we remind people that these caches are there after we take what we want, that my fellow Aerilons may want to kick up a fight all over again. Might distract the Skath for a while in ways that might be useful to us." His Arpay eyes slip from one to another as more questions come up. Sounds like more than they can hope to lay hands on. More of limit of their man power and time. "Rance, we have any intel on what Skath are in the area, or loyalists? If the Marines show up to trade on Friday, word will have two days to spread of strangers come to town before we lift off."

Idris frowns, "If pilots are dropped at LZ Slade, then they have to get through or around the town and market areas to reach the bunker."

Those sat close to Toby might notice he actually growls slightly as Lleu uses the term 'loyalists', and mutters "collaborators" under his breath. It's clearly a piece of terminology that bugs the shit out of him, but he is at least good enough not to disrupt the entire briefing over something that everyone else seems to accept. Instead he nods back to acknowledge Rance's answer and gets back to working on his list, keeping half an ear out in case there's logistics discuses he should know about.

"Already answered that, sir," Rance notes to Elena, then moves to Palermo. "I have no idea what the fuel reserves will look like in there. If there's nothing then there's nothing and we fly out on the Raptors at LZ Slade on Sunday and spend a long time cryin' about it. But yeah, Lleu, you hit the nail on the head. My hope, too. Remind them where they came from. As for Skath and Loyalists?" he slow-shakes his head. "Nothin. The best news you've got is that there isn't a whole lot in this area. The mountain keep Pless pretty remote. Two days is a lot of time when you worry about Skath but for militia fighters? Probably not much threat. If any."

Niko perks up a bit at the mention of three full air wings. Not that they have the pilots for that, but replacement Raptors and Rhinos aren't something they're going to find every day. "Got it," he nods to Rance, making more notes on his pad. "Frak …" the CAG mutters under his breath as his brow furrows in thought. Then Idris' comment has the Colonel looking up at the map again, and nodding agreement. "Captain Bloodfeather's got a point. Unless there's a good reason, we'll land our people in that field right outside the bunker." He notes this idea on his pad as he continues. "This'll have to be quick. So we'll land as many pilots as we can spare and take the biggest ships we can jump." He looks around for the Marine who was said to be in charge of the ground op and spots Lleufer. Oh wait, he knows that guy. Bennett's husband. "Gunnery Sergeant Ynyr — if there are some friendlies down there, might think about passing out guns early and get them to help hold off the Skath."

Rance nods slowly to Niko and Idris. "You can do that, but I think Petra is planning to land something larger. Something that apparently needs reinforced runway under the skids. You might want to talk to him before changing the LZ. But whatever you want to do is fine with me. I'm just the messenger boy," he chuckles. "But if that's the case you all may not want to split the LZ. And we're gonna have to drive vehicle loads of gear out to a large bird, anyway, since the big sons of bitches can't land on soil."

The Viper Squadron Leader nods to what his CAG says, then looks amused. Idris had proposed their seeking to find Raptors and simply taking them, in a previous briefing. The Captain may have reason to be smug, but not until they actually pull it off. He adds more notes to his dataslate as he listens, then glances up.

Lleufer turns his head to look for Niko. "I think we can do that, if the enemy gives us time." Ynyr hushes up to listen to Rance and the needs that require the use of the paved runway. "I think the Marines can keep a path open for Airwing and Deck to do what you need to. Straight through, or around to the east there's a road, Sir."

"Roger that," Niko acknowledges the Seven's extra information with a nod, and another note on his pad. "Well, it's not like we're gonna get a lot of chances like this, so we better go for broke." He turns to Elena, "Crone, see how many people qualified as helm and navigation officers we can borrow from the rest of the fleet, will you? Tell them it's a chance to be big damn heroes."

Elena nods crisply. "I'll cast the net and bait it," she replies, showing she knows jack shit about fishing.

Captain Bloodfeather frowns, "So, we have this week to refresh viper pilots on flying Rhinos." Idris looks to Niko, "I'll make that a priority, see how many we can finish qualifications for and keep the rest ready to deal with Raiders." The Viper Squadron Leader keeps his voice low while he speaks with his CAG, making plans.

Idris adds, raising his voice, "We know what Skath fleet were in position over Aerilon as of our initial recon but if there is additional data, Airwing will want it."

"Good thinking, Vogue." Niko shoots Idris a grin. Having a major combat op to plan is a lot better than sitting around projecting long term loss rates and the longevity of the Air Wing. "We need them able to get a Rhino off the deck and then jump it to the rendezvous. We can shuttle pilots around if we need to after."

Kar had been sitting quietly towards the back of the room, listening through the briefing. His brow in a slight frown of focus?concentration? - whatever it is, he leans back and relaxes a little in his seat, folding his arms across his chest as he slips into his own thoughts for the moment.

Once it's clear that the briefing part is over, Toby pauses in his note taking and eyes Rance for a moment. With nothing more coming he figures the techs need to get their heads together and work on a priority list. Standing up and edging his way out of the line of chairs he's sat on he snags the other deckies he can see close enough and they head off brainstorm.

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