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Chapter 7 - The Advisor[]

FSS Kentares NR-001
Kentares- Class Corvette / Ram Ship
Durna Naval Shipyard
Durna System
Lyran Commonwealth
3155


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"Lyrans? They're soft, the reason they build everything so big, is because they need all those little luxuries..."

-Field Marshall Jackson Davion, 3062...

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[Officer's quarters]

Anh was led to an officer's billet.  "et's yooje." she noted.

"Excuse me, Ma'am?" the PO 3 showing her to her quarters asked.

"Corporal, she remarked the accommodation is large. How many officers are sharing this bunk?" Chief Willard translated helpfully.

"It's a double occupancy room, sir."

"Kaporal?" Anh asked, "He dun'luk Lahk a Marine?"

"They use ground ranks for enlisted, Mum." Willard said helpfully, then he turned to the FSN enlisted man. "To clarify, this room handles two shifts in the department?"

"No sir, two personnel. Beg your pardon but, it's sufficient?"

"I think the commander's just impressed at this many cubic meters, Corporal.  In the boats, you can cram a marine squad in this much space for a three month patrol...how do you deal with depressurizing before combat?"

"We don't, sir...why would you?"

"Fahrs." Anh said, "Shokwevs f'um empects, DC's easier'n faster efn' y'alls not blowin O2 inter space, easier t'weld demmege in vac."

The young man looked thoughtful, "I almost understood that." he said.

She smiled at him, and the kid relaxed. "Et's fahn. ain' used'ter the elba-room."

"How do the Lyrans do it?" the kid asked.

"Hot bunking.  Usually the CO and the XO share a rack in the captain's office. The officers bunk with their crew in the departments..." Willard said, "Wait for it..."

Anh checked a locker with a door-sized hatch cover.  "A HEAD!"  she announced delightedly.

"You don't have bathrooms?" asked PO 3

"Shared." Willard said, "When we head out on a long duration patrol mission, there's one head for the whole ship until enough consumables are used up to empty the rest.  I think even the Frederic Steiner class battleships don't have individual heads in officer's quarters."

"Eh, theys dasn't, Chief." she said. She moved to the rack, and laid down. "Sah much room!! an' th' sheets!!"

"I think she likes it, Corporal."

"Where should we pick up the rest of your personal goods?"

"Ah gots ever'thin." Anh said, hefting her C-bag, "spares fo' uniforms, person'l effects...where's the pahr atlet fo' muh duty-Padd?"

"That's it?"

"Cubic space is limited on cutters-every CC and every gram of extra mass is tightly constrained." Willard explained, "Officers above O-3 get a full two cubic meters for personal gear, lower ranks and enlisted have to do with a one-point-five cubic meter locker."

"What, if I may ask..."

"Consumables, fuel, ammunition." Willard clarified, "These are really luxurious quarters by the standards we're used to."

The kid watched as Commander McCoy stowed her gear. Stripping out of the Class-A overgarment and into a ship's duty jumpsuit, trading the white leatherette harness for a much more practical canvas webbing version in black. She then hung her helmet to the harness with a quick-release hook.

Willard did the same.

"Um, you can stow the pressure suits-"

"Why?" she asked, "these is unifoahm."

Then it sank into the young man's understanding.  They're always in pressure suits and ready for EVA..or damage control. "My section officer will be by, sir, ma'am."

She nodded understandingly, and flopped back on the bed with a coo of delight.



[Bridge, FSS Kentares]
"Well, Mike?"  Commodore (colonel) Nick Palmer asked as the ship's infantry assault officer stripped out of 'enlisted drag'. "What do you think?"

"Those people are insane." Lieutenant Colonel Mick Strelliker said.  "Absolutely insane. If what their thinly disguised spook was saying is true, the conditions on those little cutters of theirs are damned near inhuman. Even the commanding officers hot bunk like it's a ****** submarine!"

"They...do.  come on, what's your real impression?"

"She was shocked to find a stripped down head inside the quarters." Mike said, "Then she asked about pre-battle depressurization procedures...and those cheap sheets you were complaining about? Impressed the hell out of her-she's luxuriating in having that much space."

"Eh, we read about their regs, didn't think much of it-"

"That's because unlike the LCAF, these Navy types really do that shit-she about as much as told me to my face that that one duffel had her entire worldly goods-she had it stowed in about a minute...and the guesses about shyness? She stripped off that overgarment and put on a set of working blues without even asking for privacy-I mean, the skinsuit covers everything. It sure doesn't leave a damned thing to the imagination."

"So you got to ogle-"

"Sir, this was 'barracks room' naked, not titillation.  You see it with infantry on long field deployments a lot. She undressed and changed her clothes in front of us both because that's what they're used to.  Her dogrobber, Willard? That guy understands every word out of her mouth...and a few that didn't come out of her mouth-he can read her. Just like a really good tank crew reads their commander."



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