BattleTech Fanon Wiki
The Administator (Chapter Cover Art) Chapter Page - Book 1

Chapter 41 - The Administrator[]

Tharkad Naval Shipyard
Tharkad System
Lyran Commonwealth
May, 3144

The core was technically 'compact'. At nearly the length of a Cutter, the definition is very technical. "Are you sure you really want this?" Sharon asked. "We can still have it broken up and used for smaller ships."

They were hovering in null-gee, just EVA suits, while the shipyard workers assembled the skeleton of a battleship below their feet.

"They have battleships." Trillian Steiner told her.

"Their battleships lost to our cutters." Sharon suggested. "I'm not sure this is practical. I'm also not sure this is a good use of resources, your Highness."

"Neither am I. It was enough to get the rest of your budget through the Estates General, it satisfies a great number of loyal vassals whom were offended."

"It's political." Sharon said.

"Yes...if it's unnecessary, can you still use it?" Trillian asked.

Sharon studied the plans carefully. "We can use it." she said after a moment's hesitation. "A ship, is a ship, is a ship. I'd feel better about this with maybe a mid-size cruiser design, or a frigate class, something we can have multiple slips producing simultaneously but, I can make the concept work, if not the execution."

The Archon bumped her elbow with a fist, rcs thrusters compensating. "What is your problem, Admiral?"

"If you can't afford to lose it, you can't afford to use it." Sharon recited. "Did you auction naming rights?"

"What? And deny your sense of humor?"

Sharon smiled. "Boondoggle." she said, "LCS Boondoggle. The lead ship in the boondoggle class. It'll be up to whoever gets stuck with this turkey to make the name mean something besides a waste of taxpayer money."

"Out of curiosity, with a release of funding could you have multiple slips working on it?" Trillian asked.

Sharon did some mental math. "One, maybe two yards." she said, "The bottleneck isn't materials or funding, it's talent...why?"

"I want four more yards producing these by August." the Archon said firmly. "Or at least, capable of producing them."


"If you can't afford to lose it, you can't afford to use it...and I need to hide some of Roderick's expenses, having the Naval budget a microfraction of the general budget makes that more difficult. I need his tactical and strategic acumen, and that becomes more difficult if he's seen by the public as wasting money."

"He's not wasting money."

"But the pundits trot out your budget, and Kowloon's successes, and claim he is. Public perception, Admiral."

"It sounds like you want me go on a spending spree." Sharon said.

"I do...but I also want tangible improvements off that spending spree."

"So...'look' like I'm wasting money, but don't waste money?"

"I believe you have it, Sharon." Trillian told her.

"You regular Steiners make my head hurt." Sharon said quietly. "Let's compromise. I'll accept yard expansions in secure systems far from the front, we'll build yards and training facilities, and start laying keels for more...boondoggles. But with emphasis on ships we can staff and have complete in a reasonable amount of time. more destroyers, more frigates, more carriers-so that when the Boondoggle comes out of the slipway, she's not wallowing on her own as a giant damn target."

"That sounds lovely." Trillian told her, "Do that."

Sharon watched the yard crews working on the KF core 'keel' of the Boondoggle. "I'm going to ask to insist on that name for the class." she finally said. "Because it is a waste of money, and time."

"For a good cause." Trillian assured her. "Besides, I'm willing to let you test some of your conceptual and theoretical equipment on this."

Previous Chapter - Return to Story Index - Next Chapter