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Can you tell me where we can start again (cover art) Chapter Art

Chapter 42[]

Can you tell me where can we start over?[]

Lyran Alliance

"And once again, someone demonstrates Grandfather's Maxims." Elizabeth laid the news sheet on her desk.

"Come again?" Charles Vanh, the current speak of the assembly, looked up from his own reports.

"Fixed fortifications are a testimony to the stupidity of man.  The defenses on Coventry just fell to Victor's forces."

" expect another demand for troops from Tharkad?" he asked.

"I expect I'll be ducking calls." Liz stated, "You should slow-walk a note to the HPG facility on-world, I'm in treatment again and unavailable."

"How long are you going to keep ducking them, Liz?"
"Until My work is done." she said.  "Speaking of which?"

"We've found Marjorie's Cache, and most of the equipment stored there is ruined." Charles told her.  "I guess we can send some of the nicer pieces to museums and include some of them in the Dinh Diep Holocaust museum...but nothing stored in those caverns actually survived three centuries in there."

"Well, that sucks." she stated.  "I guess we'll have to hope the offworlders buy the excuse that we 'found' working 'mechs without having found any working 'mechs.  The factory units, how are they working out?"

"Pretty well, there are some training issues still on-going, but the people you brought in to handle it seem to know their business...really you should be asking Evelynn."

"I'm not going to bother my military commander while she's assembling an army, Chuck. That's why I go through civil channels like the planetary Constitution stated way-back-when." she said

"You're not a president." Chuck responded

"I'm the closest we've got until I can't be. Remember, it was originally 'president' followed by 'Speaker of the House'. You're supposed to be up on all the day-to-day while I only have to make the big decisions...and then one day, there won't be a me. You'll have to do this without me.  We'll hold elections and someone will sit in this chair. You'll still have the real power."

"I don't know..I kind of don't want the job, Liz."

"Suck it up, your peers voted you in. Unless you want to step down from elective office you're stuck as PM until they vote a no-confidence."

"Next order of business then-taxes.  Specifically the taxes we're supposed to pay to Tharkad." he said

"How much is the operating budget of our current Coast Guard outlay?" Elizabeth asked

"About twelve percent of that."

"Deduct it from the tithe to Tharkad.  Deduct the military expenditures too.  Katherine and Nondi have been stripping the theater and nobody is taking up the slack we're covering.  They can have their share in services." Elizabeth stated, "I'll sign an order to that effect so it doesn't land on you or the Assembly...speaking of our Coast Guard outlay, what's the status on that offer I sent out to worlds in our zone of responsibility?"

"Winter's responded with an affirmative, they're eager to transfer those prisoners to custody-are you sure this is the right move?"

"We need certain skillsets." she shrugged, "If I can get people whom are already trained by giving them a ride out of prison? I'll take that and let Alicia and Bianh figure out how to turn them into people we can trust."

She barely glanced at the clock on the wall, before leaning back, "Chuck, I need some private time."

He got up without a word and left.

Elizabeth opened her medical pouch, and drew out three pre-loaded injectors and a bottle of pills, then poured a glass of fruit juice with shaking hands.

Late, late, late, I'm running out of time. she thought to herself

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