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"...my family doesn't understand my choice to join the Navy when our lineage is linked to the Army.  I will explain it to you.

My grandfather was a blustering, bloviating, bigoted, buffoon.  Like my grandfather, my father abused his position in the LCAF for personal gain, and to assist personal associates in gain.  the bizarre thing is, while both of them conducted their real-life activities to one standard, they preached a different standard.

I grew up believing in some ideals, and got old enough to see those ideals betrayed by the men who taught them to me.

I chose the Navy, because I decided at thirteen years old I was not going to be another blustering Hogarth Hypocrite."

-Lt. Commander Michael Hogarth, LCN, (CO 1st Cutter Squadron, 2nd Cutter Division), 3155

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Chapter 27 - The Advisor[]

Star Lord Class JumpShip, Project Tender 1
New Syrtis Star System
Federated Suns

[Mess Deck...]
Everyone had been served, and was seated on the long benches.  Anh stood up, and raised her glass, "Good food, good meat, good god, let's eat!"

This drew more than a few nervous titters and chuckles.  "Young Ladies and Young Gentlemen, You are the first Class, of the First Cycle, to enter the Federated Suns Light warship program.  The easy part is done.  You have proven you can work and survive in a deep space environment on the minimum needed to remain alive until rescue.  You have also set first steps toward your eventual fate as steely-eyed spacemen  but, more importantly, you have proven worthy of the honor of continuing."

She waited a few moments, catching their eyes, "When you leave this program, you will be unique.  The First Cycle of the first class will hold seniority in grade over the second, third, and fourth cycles, as well as every class after you.  When this grouping is broken up at the start of year two. It will be-those remaining will find themselves as plank owners to your first ship.  A Plank Owner is a special status, it denotes the first crew of a new vessel on commission and you will be among the plank-owners of the vessels you begin your post-graduation service aboard.  This status carries a status among Naval crew of many nations.  You may find strangers, even enemies, wishing to drink with you. Wanting to hear your story, looking on you with an admiration and respect that is unknown and unknowable to Ground Forces personnel, but more than that. You will be the ones, who set the example and the standard for everyone who follows after you."

She lowered her glass, "I never got to hold that distinction.  My first command, was a Blake War era Sampan II that Arluna was given by Kowloon before my mom was even born.  It was fifty one thousand tons of obsolete technology and packed to overcrowding by a crew of twenty five, with an Marine Complement of fifty.  I did not hold that distinction you will hold, on my second command, a Sampan III class, a sixty five thousand tons of slightly-less-obsolete tech. One of the last ones laid down at Spider Moon (Shipyard) after the RUNT was signed ten years before I was born.  My Third command, was a squadron and I was still in a Model III but, it was a III-star, the upgunned version with the less-shit heat sinks. I had to hot-bunk with my Executive Officer and we ran rough over the Jade Falcons as proper Naval officers.  Lieutenant Mervick was great, he reminded me of the wonders we were moving through.  I envy you, and so will every officer you don't serve with who has a damned clue."

She raised her glass again, "As for the ones who don't have a clue? Screw them. Their opinion doesn't matter! Here's to you kids!! You're going to set the world on its ear! Tomorrow, we begin the REAL training! Anchors UP!!"



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