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Fātiḥ Sayılgan

Admiral in the Terran Armed Forces, Commander of Fort Veritas military headquarters.

0 · 87 views · located in Tiānshì City

a character in “The Multiverse”, as played by Ylanne

Groups

Originally formed after the Tripartite Occupation of Terra, the TNG once controlled all of Terra. Currently, the TNG's jurisdiction includes most of Terra's territory, but not the entire world.
Registered citizen of the Terran National Government

Description

Image
Photo Credit: Vagabond Journey Travel, done in accordance with photo use policy of the site.

So begins...

Fātiḥ Sayılgan's Story

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Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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#, as written by Ylanne
Once Walker had passed through the security screening, the Lieutenant lifted his pistol and sword, inclining his head to the ex-general. “Sir, your weapons will be checked at the security station until your departure. Please step to the side of the desk for your photograph and to receive your visitor’s badge.” He motioned to the long, utilitarian desk behind the security station, where the Lieutenant behind the desk waited for Walker to stand in front of a yellow taped line.

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Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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#, as written by Ylanne
"Admiral Sayılgan will be with you shortly, sir," said the Lieutenant, motioning for Walker to move forward towards a long, low-lying building in the center of the complex. The sign read
L. Haima Building
pointing ahead, and
Roosevelt and Saif Building
pointing to the left. The left arrow directed viewers to
TAFRHLO
. "He will meet you inside the Haima Building's lobby, sir."

The setting changes from Fort Veritas to Terra

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianne Drulovic Character Portrait: Ed Cranford Character Portrait: Luis Galdámez Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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#, as written by Ylanne
The desk was vibrating. Luis Galdámez raised an eyebrow, eying the simple ballpoint pen as it quivered on the rusting metal surface. He was alone inside a small office, hardly more than a cubicle, really, in Fort Veritas, though he knew it wouldn't last for long.

Forty-nine.

That was the number of funerals at which he'd spoken, read some brief statement, hastily prepared in the back of a hovercar before arriving, only in the last two months.

He'd attended close to ninety.

The room's white walls were faded in neat, rectangular spots where some previous occupant had hung motivational posters. It still smelled of coffee, though Galdámez's mug had been empty now for at least an hour. The former law professor's dignified, silver hair was now entirely white, lending his features a softness that didn't seem quite right given the reality of his situation.

Terra was all but under attack, less than a year from the Aschen withdrawal after the last occupation; his friend and former prime minister Ed Cranford murdered in an attack on the TNG's central government headquarters that took dozens of lives; the military was scrambling to respond; the media was eviscerating the government's inaction; and here Galdámez sat, trembling, unable to utter a single fucking word.

Ranida was gone, too. The old general who'd served Terra faithfully from her first liberation from the Tripartite through the second from the imperial occupation had given his life in a back hallway of the building that, before the war, had slowly given way to the inevitable corruption and backhanded deals that always accompanied a politics of complacency. Galdámez had stepped uneasily around the pool of dried blood around the bullet wounds in Ranida's body. The coroner had counted three.

Instead, Fātiḥ Sayılgan had assumed command of the Terran forces, and the man Galdámez remembered as young and relatively inexperienced now looked as though he were on the verge of retirement, the struggles and battles of the last decade etched permanently on his features, his posture and gait burdened with the responsibilities of leadership that he hadn't had to carry before.

Galdámez knew he was waiting outside. For orders, for coffee, for some kind of terse discussion. He couldn't keep the general waiting forever.

He tried not to think about the faint rumblings from outside the walls. They were insulated to prevent eavesdropping and electronic monitoring, but nothing could keep the unholy ground vibrations of air and ground assault from traveling through the earth and the walls, even in a place such as this. And so, Galdámez reflected idly, he could not ignore them for longer.
"I'm done," he said, his voice stifled by the walls. He slid the pen toward the edge of the desk and leaned back in the creaking plastic chair. "I'm done."

Sayılgan opened the door and crossed to the desk, uninvited. "I'm instituting martial law in the cities, evacuating civilians, and mobilizing defensive forces," he said without greeting. Galdámez looked up without comment, adjusting his glasses and pressing his lips together. "Now, Mr. Galdámez."

Galdámez blinked, and then nodded slowly. "Fine."

"I'm through with you. I'm through waiting for you to make a fucking decision, only to find you've been sitting here on your fucking ass, moping around as if you're starring in some kind of tragic drama." The general spoke in a low tone, almost as if he were already resigned. The words that ought to have been infuriated, hurled in shouts and blows at the prime minister, were instead offered as if merely in commentary. "People -- people are fucking dying. Dying. You are incapable of making a fucking decision, then fine. Let other people do it. But I'm through. I'm through waiting for you and seeing my fellow citizens die because you can't be bothered to issue a single fucking order."

Sayılgan turned on his heels and strode from the office, not bothering to close the door.

Galdámez adjusted the buttons on his shirt cuffs. "I suppose I deserved that."

In the central command and communications center, Sayılgan was already at work, as if the entire episode with the prime minister had not occurred, ordering the field marshals to deploy what few spacecraft and atmospheric vessels they had available to form defensive positions against Terra's major urban areas while mobilizing ground forces from the remaining bases for the joint mission of overseeing civilian evacuations while defending against the incoming invasion.

Unfortunately, what Sayılgan knew all too well was that the previous war had severely depleted Terra's military resources. They would only be able to cover some of the cities. Four, perhaps. Five at most. The rest would have to depend on irregular militias, and rural areas would have to do without.

They were fighting a losing battle.

Sayılgan opened an unsecured comm broadcasting within Terra's atmosphere and immediate sovereign space, his ears flattening against his head as he spoke into the mouthpiece. "This is General Fātiḥ Sayılgan of the Terran Armed Forces. We are under invasion and requesting all available assistance immediately." He sent his encryption key to verify the message. "Over."

The decidedly short Turkish man turned to the lieutenant on his right, who was monitoring the not entirely stable transmission from Wing City a few miles to the north. "Find Drulović, would you?"

"Yes, sir," the lieutenant nodded, adjusting her collar, and then, after a moment, added, "Where do you think the Director is?"

"Hell if I know. From what the PM's said of her, she may well be in the city while it's under siege." Sayılgan was already turning away. "Important thing is, you need to find her and get her here, now. I don't know what resources TIB has, but we'll be fucked over if we don't find out soon."

"Understood." The lieutenant nodded her agreement and rose to leave.

Sayılgan glanced toward the prime minister's door, now ajar, pausing as if to consider returning. Instead, he returned to the comm channel with the remaining Terran admirals.

When Galdámez finally emerged from the office, stooped, shuffling across the cramped spaces between the consoles and the officers stationed at them, the officers hardly glanced at him except in the smallest gestures of disapproval. He approached the general, straightening the lapels of his jacket and looking down at the unpolished tiles smudged with hundreds of boots passing over them.

"You're going to give a public statement," Sayılgan said, not looking at the older man beside him. "You're going to tell everyone that you've mobilized the military, that we're fighting back to repel the invasion. Remind people to cooperate with the officers handling evacuation. Tell them it'll be all right."

"It won't," Galdámez said quietly.

Sayılgan gave a small jerk of the head, perhaps signalling his agreement. "Tell them it will be. Reassure them. And we'll be damned if we don't give it everything we have. This is our planet, Mr. Galdámez. Our home. Our world. Sure, we might lose. But we'll go down fighting til the very end. You hear me?"

Galdámez exhaled audibly. "It may well be the end, General. Be prepared for it."

"You know I am."

"This time, we might not survive," Galdámez warned. He slipped his hands into his pant pockets, peering intently at the screens on the consoles behind the general. "Coming so soon on the heels of the last war and occupation? We're not prepared. We don't have the resources. If they want to take Terra, the TAF won't be able to stop them."

Sayılgan opened his mouth to reply when the words caught in his throat. He looked across the command room and caught sight of the small old woman making her way toward the two of them, leaning heavily on a simple black cane as she walked. "You, go. Give your statement. I need to talk to Drulović."

"I'm going to regret this later," said Galdámez, shaking his head. "If you have any sense about you, General, you will too." He ducked his head and turned to leave the room. The few press correspondents who'd remained at Fort Veritas would wait down the hall for him.

He passed several members of the armed forces on the way, nodding to each as they offered the customary salute, his steps faltering only as he approached the press briefing room. He forced a smile and pushed the door open, the soft chattering giving way to silence at his entrance. "Good afternoon," he said, closing the door with a quiet click behind him. He swore it smelled of cigarettes, though none of the reporters or camerapeople were smoking. The little red lights indicating live filming blinked to life.

This address would be broadcast live across Terra and throughout Terran sovereign space, right to the edge of Martian space.

In contrast to the usual shouting and jockeying for questions, Galdámez was reminded of the kind of silence he'd discovered at each of the eighty-nine funerals he'd attended in the last two months, the kind of silence that tries at once to communicate respect, unease, discomfort, and fear. He cleared his throat, choosing to stand in front of the podium with the TNG's seal rather than behind it. He felt their eyes staring at him.

"We are in a time of great peril," he said. "Terra has come under attack again."

Galdámez's voice was soft, the words untainted by unnecessary dramatization or carefully rehearsed rhetoric. When he spoke, all ears in the room turned toward him, and the transcriber hardly needed to hurry to match his pace. "Our military is committed to ensuring the safe evacuation of all of our citizens and residents from the cities under attack. It is important for everyone's safety that you listen to whatever they tell you right now. As soon as you are safe, they can join the rest of the military in forming defensive positions against the invaders in the places where they are most needed. We will fight and we will repel this invasion."
He paused, removing his glasses, and wiped them almost absently with a handkerchief from his coat pocket. The green-haired woman in the front row noticed that Galdámez's hand trembled with the motion.

"This is only the latest trial in a long train of adversities to challenge us as a people and as a nation. As hard as it may be, as dangerous, as painful, as long -- we will endure and we will overcome. Together." He bowed his head and turned to leave, returning the handkerchief to his pocket and his glasses to his face.

The setting changes from Terra to Tiānshì City

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianne Drulovic Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Avantia Kumara Character Portrait: Luis Galdámez Character Portrait: Janis McMorrow Character Portrait: Kaida Kokuro Character Portrait: Andrew Pinheiro da Varona Character Portrait: Haruki Kokuro Character Portrait: Liang Cheng Character Portrait: Katsuro Naoe Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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#, as written by Ylanne
Luis Galdámez was not looking forward to the day's scheduled events. Once word had reached the TNG's Prime Minister of the bombing in Shintechi, the conference had been organized post-haste with very little direction outside of the knowledge that something needed to happen or else all relations with the Shintechi nations would be quickly sliding downhill in an unstoppable avalanche far faster and stronger than they had been already. Galdámez checked his calendar app on his comm for the fourteenth time since the government chartered plane had touched down in Tiānshì International Airport and the full party had squeezed into a convoy for the ride to the Tsian Conference Hall. He grunted, frowning, and stuffed the comm back into his pocket, leaning back against the leather seat and eyeing the scenery with wary glare.

"You know what's one of the worst parts of this job?" Galdámez spoke idly, flicking his finger against the car window. "Only getting to travel when something's gone wrong."

The decidedly fat woman to his left gave a smirk. Janis McMorrow shifted the black briefcase on her lap, squaring her shoulders. "Don't worry; election season's almost over and then you can finally haul your ass out the way of retirement."

"It can't come soon enough." Galdámez stared through the window, past Fātiḥ Sayılgan, as their car came to a sudden stop in front of the conference hall's main entrance. The prime minister waited for the general to open the door for the rest of them, and once Grand Admiral Sayılgan had done so, he gestured for the others to go ahead of him.

Andrew Pinheiro da Varona wheeled from the limousine once the lift had been extended, waiting at the curbside before McMorrow joined him. "Festive mood, huh?" Varona glanced around the space as security gathered about the TNG representatives.

"You don't say." McMorrow shook her head, smoothing her suit lapels. "What's that, brought your lunch?"

Varona glared. "It's a ball of yarn."

"Wow, no need to be so defensive." McMorrow turned as Galdámez finally stepped out of the car, rolling her eyes.

"Save it for the party." Galdámez swept his hand toward the door. The second car in their convoy stopped, and Arianne Drulović slowly emerged, making her way toward the others. "Good to see you, Arianne."

"I wish it were under better circumstances, Mr. Galdámez," the intelligence director replied, offering a nod to her colleagues. "I suspect there will be food waiting inside for us, and I must confess I'm quite hungry after that horrid flight."

"You say that after every flight," Varona said, rolling past both Drulović and Galdámez to the ramp by the stairs. "Let's get this over with."

Once they had assembled in the lobby -- after a small, terse exchange between General Sayılgan and one of the Dragonwatch guards -- any trace of warmth had faded from the party, and Galdámez set about greeting the Empress Kaida with a formal bow and introduction.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianne Drulovic Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Avantia Kumara Character Portrait: Luis Galdámez Character Portrait: Janis McMorrow Character Portrait: Kaida Kokuro Character Portrait: Andrew Pinheiro da Varona Character Portrait: Haruki Kokuro Character Portrait: Liang Cheng Character Portrait: Katsuro Naoe Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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#, as written by Tiko
Avantia was the last to arrive, though only by a matter of minutes as she swept in behind the TNG delegates. She carried and air of calm dignity about her despite the touch of exhaustion that found its way to her eyes.

It had been a long month, and recent events were promising it to be a longer one yet in the days to come. She took it in stride and without objection though.

Flanking her on either side were Saral Mahajan, High Commander of the Volarian armies, and Ladhi Kumara, Lady of Realms - serving as Avantia's chief adviser on foreign matters.

Though Avantia and Lady Saral sported the trademark wings of the avorian people, High Commander Mahajan appeared human. It wasn't uncommon for humans to rise to positions of prominence within the military though, as the Volarian military was primarily comprised of humans.

Avantia bowed her head in greeting to the gathered delegates, while the two with her repeated the gesture in turn.

Once the three Volarians had seated themselves and greetings had been completed, Avantia addressed the gathered group. Translators had been provided for all gathered and she spoke in the rich Volarian tongue.

"We have much to discuss," she began. "The foremost on everyone's minds being the destruction of the Great Sato Bridge I am sure. I for one would like to broach the topic of how something like this could occur," she began.

Her eyes fell to the TNG party. The TNG's refusal to allow AXIS operated fleets in the region to protect Shintenchi interests left the responsibility for this lapse in security largely upon the TNG. Disallowing foreign fleets had placed them, at least morally, responsible for the security of the independent Terran nations from off world threats within the local region.

A responsibility that within the eyes of the Volarians, they had failed to uphold.

"Your nation has sought to bar ours from the resources necessary to protect ourselves from off world threats under the excuse of not allowing foreign military to operate within the local region, and yet the TNG has permitted UCON to operate freely within its lands and to maintain permanent military bases, as well as a Varden military station within the local region."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianne Drulovic Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Avantia Kumara Character Portrait: Luis Galdámez Character Portrait: Janis McMorrow Character Portrait: Kaida Kokuro Character Portrait: Andrew Pinheiro da Varona Character Portrait: Haruki Kokuro Character Portrait: Liang Cheng Character Portrait: Katsuro Naoe Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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#, as written by Script
Kaida inclined her head respectfully and offered a greeting to each of the arrivals in turn, before seating herself at the table along with the other Losenji officials. Katsuro remained standing at her side, though a brief exchange of subtle hand-gestures would indicate that they were communicating to anyone particularly observant. When Avantia spoke, the Empress nodded her head. "The destruction of the bridge has affected us all, both in respect to the financial loss it represents and the terrible loss of life. Only the intervention of our AXIS allies, the Matokey, prevented the disaster from being even greater. It stands to reason that if the TNG cannot guarantee our safety from offworld threats, neither can it raise objections to an increased presence of our foreign allies in the region in order to provide the security that it cannot."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianne Drulovic Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Avantia Kumara Character Portrait: Luis Galdámez Character Portrait: Janis McMorrow Character Portrait: Kaida Kokuro Character Portrait: Andrew Pinheiro da Varona Character Portrait: Haruki Kokuro Character Portrait: Liang Cheng Character Portrait: Katsuro Naoe Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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Kayabuki silently nodded as she considered her next words. She pondered and then her lips parted to speak.

"I will not condone a course of action that will lead to war. But I need to emphasize the importance of the continued security and sovereignty of the Shintenchi nations. A Continued sovereignty that the Taiyou Empire is prepared to support, through force if needed." The Prime Minister explained.

"The disaster that occured at the Great Seto Bridge was, from what I understand an entirely preventable disaster. It is the attitude of the Terran National Government that the Shintenchi Nations were forbidden from maintaining an allied and military presence capable of guaranteeing it's security. The grave oversight that led to this attack, rests on the Terran National Government, and the unreasonable restrictions it's placed on the free sovereignty of the Losenji, Volaria, and Shogunate nations."

Kayabuki paused before she turned towards Avantia and Kaida.

"It is the opinion of the Imperial Taiyou Government that the TNG has clearly abandoned it's responsibility to assist and protect the Shintenchi Nations in light of it's restrictions on their allied Militaries. Therefore I am prepared to authorize an Orbital Blockade in addition to the installation of Internationally Operated orbital defensive platforms and Sunflower Orbital Installations. Available exclusively to the Militaries of the three Shintenchi Nations." Kayabuki added.

"A military matter the TNG will no longer have a choice in, given it's past disposition towards the Shintenchi Nations."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianne Drulovic Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Avantia Kumara Character Portrait: Luis Galdámez Character Portrait: Janis McMorrow Character Portrait: Kaida Kokuro Character Portrait: Andrew Pinheiro da Varona Character Portrait: Haruki Kokuro Character Portrait: Liang Cheng Character Portrait: Katsuro Naoe Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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#, as written by Ylanne
"I can certainly understand the concerns that you all have raised," Galdámez began, speaking as calmly as possible, with his hands folded one over the other. The tension spread throughout the entire room, thickening to the point where the aging law professor felt almost suffocated by it. "There have been breaches of security, and yes, some of them have been the result of our mistakes. But -- "

"We know what you want," McMorrow interjected, staring directly at Kayabuki. "What you're proposing is a blatant violation of TNG sovereignty and you know it. Don't pretend like you don't know exactly what you're saying. The conditions in place right now have been in place to protect the very sovereignty that you're threatening to undermine once again."

"Please." Galdámez lifted a hand in an apparent attempt to pause McMorrow, who folded her arms over her chest, her expression frigid. Galdámez rubbed his temples, struggling to maintain his composure. To his surprise, however, he found himself more exasperated with McMorrow than he did with any of the other dignitaries present. Perhaps it was her sudden, unexpected brashness. Though he hadn't ever known the foreign affairs minister to be shy, he certainly had not anticipated this outburst. "We all want to get to the bottom of this. The prosperity and security of the Shintechi nations is integral to our security because we share this world together. We simply feel that outside intervention is not appropriate."

"Yeah, you're forgetting the part where the Vardan are in our space," McMorrow added snidely, lifting a finger. "Which, I might add, was not a decision that the entire TNG supported then nor a decision that we all like very much now either. I'm sure you all have questions about that, and you know what, you should. They shouldn't have been allowed into our space, and Parliament was never consulted on the matter."

"There were military r -- " Varona began, turning sharply toward McMorrow.

"I'm not finished. The TNG Parliament did not approve this reckless decision, and you cannot use Vardan presence -- which must end with all due speed, for the record -- as some kind of willy-nilly justification for Taiyou incursion into TNG sovereign space. I'm sorry, but no." McMorrow settled back into her seat, her shoulders drawn back. "Now, Mr. Varona, now, I'm finished."

Drulović had watched the remarks with passing interest, her expression impassive as was her usual practice. She finished a bite of some Losenji fruit and delicately wiped her chin and fingers with one of the napkins provided. The TIB director was content to sit in the farthest corner of the table, away from everyone else compelled to attend this meeting. She'd never enjoyed politics before, and she knew she wasn't about to start now.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianne Drulovic Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Avantia Kumara Character Portrait: Luis Galdámez Character Portrait: Janis McMorrow Character Portrait: Kaida Kokuro Character Portrait: Andrew Pinheiro da Varona Character Portrait: Haruki Kokuro Character Portrait: Liang Cheng Character Portrait: Katsuro Naoe Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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#, as written by Script
"So, is it the case, Ms. McMorrow, that you would lay TNG sovereign claim to the entirety of the planet's airspace and atmosphere?" Kaida challenged. The Empress remained calmly composed, though there was a certain bite to her tone that had not been present a moment ago. "It is my understanding that such Taiyou installations would be limited to airspace - and the atmosphere that correlates with its position - that is considered to belong to our nations."

Truth be told, Kaida was not entirely certain that was what the Shogunate representatives had meant by their statements, but she herself was less inclined towards throwing the weight of the AXIS alliance around and infringing on the position of the TNG itself. Tensions were high enough without pushing their neighbours across the seas any further than was necessary.

"The fact that you would dismiss the catastrophic loss of life that took place during the Varden attack as a 'willy-nilly' justification is, frankly, quite disturbing. It has made it quite apparent that we are not adequately protected from extraterrestrial threats. Our nations are in genuine danger - do you have any idea of the scope of destruction that might have been caused had the Matokeyans not intervened? We have no idea if that swarm of..." Kaida paused, glancing back at Katsuro for a moment before continuing, "...nanobots would have stopped at the bridge, or if they would have gone on to become a disaster even grander in scale."

She frowned. "Regardless of whether your parliament approved the decision or not, the result - be it of negligence or mismanagement - was beyond excuse. I speak for Losenji when I say that we are no longer satisfied with relying on the TNG for protection from off-world enemies. I cannot see room for compromise with regard to implementing AXIS defences in our sovereign airspace."

The Empress folded her arms. "That said, although I am not sure what legitimate objections could be raised to this plan, I am willing to listen to any you may have."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianne Drulovic Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Avantia Kumara Character Portrait: Luis Galdámez Character Portrait: Janis McMorrow Character Portrait: Kaida Kokuro Character Portrait: Andrew Pinheiro da Varona Character Portrait: Haruki Kokuro Character Portrait: Liang Cheng Character Portrait: Katsuro Naoe Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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#, as written by Tiko
"Volaria stands with Losenji and the Taiyou on this matter. We have attempted diplomacy on the matter, and sought to cooperate with the TNG's objection to an AXIS fleet in the local region. Unfortunately while the TNG stands behind their hypocrisy, it is Shintenchi who has suffered for it. Will you tell us that the UCON military bases that you allow to operate from within your territories are also not sanctioned by the TNG government?" Avantia shook her head and waved a dismissive hand. "Either you're lying to us, or aren't competent enough to know what's going on in your own country. Volaria will be lobbying its support for an AXIS operated orbital defense of our countries, but we are willing to negotiate on the exact terms of such an installment. "

"However..."

Avantia raised a hand briefly, indicating she had more to say.

"On the matter of the destruction of the Great Sato Bridge itself, I understand that not hours after this terrorist attack, several Taiyou ships have already departed for the Varden's home galaxy? Volaria does not condone, nor support these actions. We ask that the Taiyou withdraw their offensive and recall these ships before they reach the Onyx Galaxy, pending a formal investigation. It is preposterous that thousands - if not millions - more will be added to the dead before we even know the true face of our enemy."

She shook her head once more.

"What happened on that bridge was a tragedy, but a single ship acting alone does not sanction a galactic invasion."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianne Drulovic Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Avantia Kumara Character Portrait: Luis Galdámez Character Portrait: Janis McMorrow Character Portrait: Kaida Kokuro Character Portrait: Andrew Pinheiro da Varona Character Portrait: Haruki Kokuro Character Portrait: Liang Cheng Character Portrait: Katsuro Naoe Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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Kayabuki made a face when Avantia mentioned the Varden and the presence of UCON military bases. She checked some notes for a moment, and then turned back to McMorrow.

"What you're proposing is a blatant violation of TNG sovereignty and you know it. Don't pretend like you don't know exactly what you're saying. The conditions in place right now have been in place to protect the very sovereignty that you're threatening to undermine once again."

"And the conditions in place directly threaten the Sovereignty of the Nations of the Shintenchi Island. Who have a right to enjoy whomever they see fit present in their airspace. The Terran Government's posturing in the name of Sovereignty is laughable at best, and the Shintenchi Nations reserve a sovereign right to adequate military defense and allied presence in their system." Kayabuki said, checking a few more notes.

"I don't seem to recall the Sato Shogunate or the Nation of Volaria throwing a fit about the hundreds of thousands of UCON apparatus forces on the eastern seaboard, a troop buildup that could be construed as precursor to Invasion. You don't raise a fuss because it doesn't threaten your sovereignty." Kayabuki said, shaking her head before she turned to Avantia and Kaida.

"The proposed installations would be available and operated exclusively by the militaries of your respective nations. It's proposed to allow for a gradual AXIS peacekeeping withdrawal from this sector of space, and encourage the self sufficiency of the Shintenchi Nations." Kayabuki said, turning back to the TNG delegation. "But so long as the Terran National Government remains a viable threat to the Sovereignty of the Shintenchi Nations, the AXIS will always be poised to intervene." Kayabuki added, shifting her papers.

"The Terrans do not control the Entire planet, therefore this plan should have no direct bearing on her sovereignty. If we must make it a matter of weapons, I would much prefer an internationally operated defense system, than the Sato Shogunate's nuclear deterrence."

It was then her expression darkened at the mention of Taiyou ships in Onyx.

"Strange, the War Council did not inform me they were authorizing any Invasions, whatever the case I am sure it's to contact the Varden to demand an explaination, rather than a retaliatory strike."

Setting

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Character Portrait: Arianne Drulovic Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Avantia Kumara Character Portrait: Luis Galdámez Character Portrait: Janis McMorrow Character Portrait: Kaida Kokuro Character Portrait: Andrew Pinheiro da Varona Character Portrait: Haruki Kokuro Character Portrait: Liang Cheng Character Portrait: Katsuro Naoe Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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#, as written by Ylanne
"I'm open to discussion." Sayılgan set his glass down on the table, inclining his head slightly as he spoke. "The Terran Armed Forces can certainly consider a proposal for a joint-operated base. If I may be so bold..."

Varona's ball of yarn, which shifted subtly from one end of the rainbow spectrum to the other along the spun fibers, slid from his hands and started rolling along the floor. The deputy defense minister stiffened for a moment, then bent down, his fingers scrambling for the ball. It seemed it might have slipped beneath the tablecloth.

"...I think the Honorable Minister McMorrow's concern lies with a majority Taiyou military contingent operating within the close vicinity of TNG sovereign space, even if they are within Shintechi sovereign space," Sayılgan said, nodding toward McMorrow. "I cannot speak for our Parliament or the Honorable Prime Minister, but as Grand Admiral, I would have no objections to an Axis military installation within Terra's gravity well provided that its leadership, administration, and personnel were majority Terran. By which I mean, of course, Shintechi Terran, Losenji, Volarian, rather than TNG Terran."

Varona's hand closed around the ball of yarn and he scooped it up quickly, straightening and clasping the yarn tighter in his lap. "Any proposal would have to be approved by the Defence Ministry," Varona said coolly, giving Sayılgan a sharp look. "The Grand Admiral's desire to cooperate is commendable, but he can't speak for the Ministry, or for Parliament."

That prompted a small snort from Drulović, who until now had been quietly jotting notes on a small pad she'd brought for the purpose. "I'm afraid no one truly speaks for Parliament, Mr. Varona," she said, "though I'm sure you'd enjoy the attempt." She looked up, her eyes keen as they slid from Kayabuki to Avantia to Kaida, neatly along the table where Kaida's other guests had been seated. "I think, and I think you all know this too, that this planet's safety and security ought to trump selfish nationalist concerns. It should concern everyone at this table, not to mention everyone at home, that some small band of terrorists, no matter their sponsor or banner, crept onto Terran soil and murdered Terran beings."

McMorrow swore she could hear Galdámez's breathing beside her.

"That loss was a tragedy for all of us," Drulović said, her shoulders straightened. "I imagine it was a warning, too. This government's security is intricately bound up with each of yours. Enough playing with these silly games. If the Terran nations are divided, I can assure you that more of us will die. I can't say I'm particularly enthralled with the idea of inviting Taiyou soldiers to space so close to home, but I'm quite certain that the possible alternatives have infinitely worse potential for harm. I'd like to think my colleagues would agree that preventing terrorism and strengthening the security of the collective space around this planet that we share would be an admirable goal. I'd hope, Ms. McMorrow, that you'd be above using the deaths of these Terrans in some kind of warped political agenda."

McMorrow withered under Drulović's gaze. "Well, now, I wouldn't quite characterize it like that, Director." Varona muttered something under his breath, but when McMorrow glanced in his direction, he looked away, down the table.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianne Drulovic Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Avantia Kumara Character Portrait: Luis Galdámez Character Portrait: Janis McMorrow Character Portrait: Kaida Kokuro Character Portrait: Andrew Pinheiro da Varona Character Portrait: Haruki Kokuro Character Portrait: Liang Cheng Character Portrait: Katsuro Naoe Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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#, as written by Script
Kaida allowed herself a small smile towards Drulović when she spoke her piece, but it swiftly vanished and her face returned to its prior mask of collected composure. "The suggestion of the Grand Admirable is a viable one. There is reason to the preference for Shintenchi-controlled defences as opposed to foreign controlled ones. Such a venture would also provide significant employment opportunity to citizens of the islands. That said, it will take time for our citizens to be trained to operate such equipment - notably in the case of Losenji, where technology of that nature is largely unheard of within our borders."

She paused to consider, "Perhaps we might initially man the installations with Taiyou forces, during an interim period in which the necessary training is given to Shintenchi citizens leading to a full transition to the defences being operated by Shintenchi within a reasonable time-frame."

The setting changes from Tiānshì City to Parliament's Chambers

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianne Drulovic Character Portrait: Raphael E. McGregor Character Portrait: Sire Mollem McGregor Character Portrait: Rhea Character Portrait: Charles Kesslee Character Portrait: Rubano Malijin Character Portrait: Kynala Evantus Character Portrait: Sigurd Olafson Character Portrait: Maximillian "Captain" Dirge Character Portrait: Alison Keating Character Portrait: Sarangerel Character Portrait: Jamal Morrison Lebrun Character Portrait: Chloë McGregor Character Portrait: Lelantus Haima Character Portrait: Luis Galdámez Character Portrait: Najia Okeke Character Portrait: Giles Fabron Character Portrait: Janis McMorrow Character Portrait: Victor Vidal Character Portrait: Leaf Lotical Character Portrait: Express News Character Portrait: Vlatko Klaic Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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#, as written by Ylanne
By the time the intricately carved grandfather clock mounted behind the dais struck one, formally dressed guests from every corner of the local region -- and some from beyond -- had filled the seats in the gallery. Visitors lined the balconies along the second and third tiers up from the floor, where the Terran National Government's incoming and outgoing politicians mingled amongst themselves, waiting for the proceedings to began. Their voices resounded throughout the chamber, bouncing from the high dome to create an inescapable hum that only the clock tolling threatened to break. With the low, deep tone of the clock's bell chimes, sounding over and perhaps through the din, the enormous ceremonial wooden doors on either side of the dais opened. Much of the audience instinctively hushed, their faces turning toward the dais.

From one side emerged Luis Galdámez, an aging man with silver hair and more lines in his face than when he had assumed office as the TNG's Prime Minister, reluctantly, for a second time, after the death of his friend and colleague, Ed Cranford, at the hands of terrorists. Their brutal attack had left this building devastated, but, perhaps in testament to Terran resilience, within less than nine months, Government Center had been fully restored. Galdámez had heard that the builders had started with this room. Parliament's Chambers symbolized the democracy at the heart of the TNG constitution. Galdámez wore a simple black suit that he'd bought at a department store a few decades ago before teaching his first class to eager, nervous law students starting their first semester.

On the other side of the dais, the door gave way to a human woman with dark brown hair tied back in a severe cut, her honey-colored eyes gleaming as she nodded, briefly, to Galdámez. This was High Justice Rana Khawaldeh, the senior-most justice of the TNG's Supreme Court. Khawaldeh stood at about the same height as her counterpart, though she was significantly fatter and slightly older. She was dressed in matching black, though Khawaldeh's attire consisted of her long, flowing black robe. Along with Galdámez, she would be conducting the inauguration ceremony. He would pass from one side of the dais to the other to mark the end of his term. Khawaldeh, in contrast, was the symbol of continuity and stability. The two met in the center of the dais and stood in front of the two center-most chairs. They were all the same high-backed chairs upholstered in dark blue satin fabric with intricate embroidery depicting the TNG seal. Galdámez shared Khawaldeh's opinion of the furnishings -- they were much too opulent for his taste. He supposed that the decorative furnishings were another symbol of their national pride.

"Good afternoon, Luis," Khawaldeh said in a subdued tone meant to keep the reporters crowding their designated section on the floor from overhearing. She clasped both hands around the outgoing prime minister's extended hand, offering a smile.

"How are you doing?" asked Galdámez, inclining his head.

"I'm doing wonderfully, just wonderfully." Khawaldeh released Galdámez's hand and nodded to the newly elected members taking their seats. "I hope you've prepared."

"Of course." Galdámez cocked a grin. "Don't I always?" In response, Khawaldeh shook her head. Galdámez stepped to the podium, waiting for complete silence before he would begin his opening speech.

Members-elect were ushered to their seats in the first three rows of members seating, where the plaques with the names of outgoing members would be replaced by the next morning with the new names. Behind Galdámez and Khawaldeh, the few members of the administration instructed to attend silently entered through the same ceremonial doors, the wood-inscribed TNG seal giving way for the wounded national hero, Lelantus Haima, who entered beside a smiling Jamal Morrison Lebrun, the National Police Agency director whose power-chair shined with fresh polish as he wheeled up the ramp to the dais. On the other side of the dais, Terran Armed Forces Grand Admiral Fātiḥ Sayılgan escorted the intelligence director, Arianne Drulović, onto the raised platform. While Sayılgan maintained a professional, muted smile, Drulović appeared positively severe in her expression.

"Frankly," she said in a low voice, "I don't understand why I need to be here. I think it was enough that I came for the first inauguration under Mr. Cranford, and the second one, too, under Mr. Galdámez, wouldn't you think? This simply seems too much. You know I have no particular fondness for politics."

"It's a show. You gotta play to the show." Sayılgan shrugged, offering the older woman a hand to the first step. "You and Lebrun, well, let's just say, a lot of people would notice if you didn't make an appearance."

Once it seemed that everyone had taken their seats and fallen into the silence of anticipation, Galdámez laid his hands on the podium. "Welcome. High Justice Khawaldeh, Ms. Vaeros, members of Parliament, our friends, our distinguished guests, welcome. Each time we gather to celebrate the inauguration of a new Parliament, we recognize the enduring history of our young nation. In only a few short decades, our young nation has continued to grow and prosper. Despite innumerable setbacks, occupation, war, and turmoil at home, our constitution has endured. We affirm our national commitment to liberty, to prosperity, and to unity."

As the prime minister spoke, Drulović let her eyes slide to the clock mounted in the back of the room, placed conveniently so that those on the dais could keep track of the time without turning backward and upward to look at the ceremonial clock above them. She adjusted the lapels of her jacket, estimating that Galdámez would speak for a solid fifteen minutes.

In the end, it turned out that Drulović was wrong. He finished at twelve minutes and forty seconds.

"And with that, I would like to ask our High Justice, Rana Khawaldeh, to commence the proceedings." Galdámez turned away from the podium, stepping back to allow Khawaldeh to assume her role over the ceremony. Khawaldeh looked toward Rhea Vaeros for the newly elected prime minister to mount the dais alongside the High Justice. The prime minister would be sworn in first, to be followed by the members of Parliament collectively. Khawaldeh had been pleasantly surprised that many incumbents had been voted out of office or decided not to run for reelection altogether, though she noted with her glance that there were faces she recognized among the members waiting to be sworn in. Those were the incumbents. As Drulović would have put it, Khawaldeh surmised that there would always be some pollution among any political body. She stifled a smile at that as Rhea approached.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianne Drulovic Character Portrait: Raphael E. McGregor Character Portrait: Sire Mollem McGregor Character Portrait: Rhea Character Portrait: Charles Kesslee Character Portrait: Rubano Malijin Character Portrait: Kynala Evantus Character Portrait: Sigurd Olafson Character Portrait: Maximillian "Captain" Dirge Character Portrait: Alison Keating Character Portrait: Sarangerel Character Portrait: Jamal Morrison Lebrun Character Portrait: Chloë McGregor Character Portrait: Lelantus Haima Character Portrait: Luis Galdámez Character Portrait: Najia Okeke Character Portrait: Giles Fabron Character Portrait: Janis McMorrow Character Portrait: Victor Vidal Character Portrait: Leaf Lotical Character Portrait: Express News Character Portrait: Vlatko Klaic Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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#, as written by Gasmask
He was late, and he knew it. Sigurd sported a vicious cut along his cheek, an accident with a shaver earlier that morning after his secretary had demanded that he 'clean up'. His big, oafish hands had barely been able to fit the tiny blade in his hands and he'd lost track of what they were meant to be doing, so his gigantic hirsute beard still covered a majority of his beard.

Then a tailor had tried squeezing him into a suit, but ultimately left the tailor in a bind with the top jacket wrapped around his head and an angry half-giant stumbling out of the building, tearing the ill fitting, pin covered shirt off his chest. Then he'd had an argument with the authorities outside the building over the oversized axe he was lugging around, and he had to return to his room to put it away much to his sadness.

Sigurd stumbled into parliament and found his seat, almost crushing the groaning chair with his weight. His eyes scanning the room from Drulović , to the diminutive giles. Nay, they were all midgets that he could crush in the palm of his hand, midgets that talked far too much and used too many big words, and he bet they didn't even drink at the end of a long day, or at all.

Sigurd let out a slow, thoughtful groan as he stood. "There is no argument till the son of Olaf is here, and he is!" The giant swung his arms in open challenge. "Where is the booze? Sarangerel said there would be booze." The giant leaned over his seat to look around, all he saw were glasses of water. "Fine. There is no booze." Sigurd sat back down and folded his arms like a spoiled child denied his favorite plaything.

Midgets. The lot of them. Midgets with no booze.

The setting changes from Parliament's Chambers to Tiānshì City

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianne Drulovic Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Avantia Kumara Character Portrait: Luis Galdámez Character Portrait: Janis McMorrow Character Portrait: Kaida Kokuro Character Portrait: Andrew Pinheiro da Varona Character Portrait: Haruki Kokuro Character Portrait: Liang Cheng Character Portrait: Katsuro Naoe Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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The Prime Minister nodded slightly, and then she shuffled some paperwork.

"We need to get to the meat of the matter, though, so I can contact the AXIS, and get things moving in the right direction." Kayabuki said flatly as she turned to Kaida, and Avantia.

"What action, if any do we need to take about this situation?" She said, taking down some notes. "I understand that the Imperial General Headquarters is deliberating a retialitory strike, but we need to make sure we're putting the right people to justice. I understand UCON and the Invictus are planning to complete their own, individual investigations as well." She explained.

"So, we need to agree to take action, and we need to do it swiftly in the event Concord is indeed preparing for an all out attack."

The setting changes from Tiānshì City to Fort Veritas

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Character Portrait: Mitth'raw'nuruodo Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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A single Honor Guard of Admiral Thrawn made his way through the labyrinthine interior of the Fort. Her boots were quiet, but still thudded against the tiled floors as she walked, rifle slung across her back and pistol at her hip as her armor gleamed perfectly in the light of the building. Her visor was cold and unfeeling as she looked at each door she passed, looking for a singular person: Grand Admiral Fātiḥ Sayılgan.

Ah. There it was. The trooper strode up to the door, stopped, and knocked twice strong and resolute, before waiting to be admitted. She took hold of the door knob and twisted, opening it slowly at first, then opening it fully and stepping inside. "Grand Admiral Fātiḥ Sayılgan, sir." she greeted coolly, her voice modulated by her helmet. She reached up, and carefully removed said helmet, revealing a beautiful Red-Headed clone of the Jedi Kinara - this clone had dyed her hair, and kept it cut short in an adorable pixie cut. Her green eyes stared respectifully at the man.

"I bring you a message from Admiral Mitth'raw'nuruodo, if you will recieve it, Sir." she said calmly, bringing her hand to her hip, where a holo-communicator was perched. She took it from her belt and held it out in her palm. All he need do is give the word, and she'd activate the message.

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Character Portrait: Mitth'raw'nuruodo Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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#, as written by Ylanne
The offices were fine but plain, an aesthetic common to parts of Government Center, especially those reconstructed after its last destruction, and pervasive in the command offices on base here. Sayılgan actually lived on base, unlike most of the top brass, and so his commute each day took about seven minutes, eight if a march procession interrupted his walk from the little house to the main administrative building. He rose each morning at four-thirty, and was in his office by five, but rarely returned home before seven. The briefings on this particular Wednesday had turned up nothing particularly unusual, other than Parliament's continued refusal - by the slimmest of margins - to adopt a war footing against the Terra Nova Empire, now intruding on the borders of Wing City itself. When Kinara's clone appeared at half past ten, Sayılgan was about halfway through his second cup of coffee, though he set it into its perfectly sized coaster at the sight of her.

Sayılgan was a relatively short man with a wiry, muscular build, a severely receding hairline, and dark coarse hair, wearing his undress greys. He was pushing sixty-five now, and knew there were many who expected him to consider retirement not to far into the future. But Terra's intelligence czar had still been working - sometimes eighteen hour days - up through her nineties, and only left because she'd been forced to, and so Sayılgan had no intention of leaving anytime particularly soon either. Terrans were a resilient bunch, and stubborn. He eyed the clone and nodded, gesturing for her to activate the holo-communicator. "Go ahead."

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Character Portrait: Mitth'raw'nuruodo Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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"Aye, Sir." she complied, pressed the activating button. It activated, and a pre-recorded holo-projection of Thrawn appeared before the Grand Admiral. He was wearing, at least in the projection anyway, his pressed white Grand Admiral's uniform from his days in the Empire. He offered a quick salute, and then cleared his throat.

"Grand Admiral, greetings.

"Surely by now you have been informed, if not directly taken part of the massive shift in personnel within the Terran National Government. Additionally, you must be worried about the growing threat of the Terra Nova Empire. With the Terran Defense Fleet as limited as it is, we will be unable to combat any threats to the planet effectively. Surely I need not tell you this - you've already deduced it. We are, now more than ever, vulnerable to attack due to the shift in Personnel.

"I have numerous plans that I believe will work against the Terra Nova Empire, should we adopt a hostile stance, and indeed against the Aschen or Taiyou if they try another invasion. However, in order for those plans to fruition, I cannot continue to be locked away in prison. I cannot oversee the construction of the new defense fleet or it's supporting buildings from this cell, and of course, we as members of the navy, cannot get said construction approved with no one paying attention to the issues at hand.

"My Guard will have a data-pad with the aforementioned information for you to peruse at your leisure, Grand Admiral. I hope you will be able to assist me, and if not you, someone higher.

"Good day."


With that the holo-projection faded, the Clone returned the projector to her belt, and retrieved from the small of her back the datapad in question, stepping forward to hand it over, or place it on the desk, whatever the senior officer wanted of her.

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Character Portrait: Mitth'raw'nuruodo Character Portrait: Andrew Pinheiro da Varona Character Portrait: Fātiḥ Sayılgan
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#, as written by Ylanne
Sayılgan watched the relayed message in silence, one hand resting on his chin as he listened to Thrawn's offering, considering. He'd met Thrawn, in passing only, when the Chiss had come to the Terrans originally, but Thrawn had always been traveling offworld, and Sayılgan was instead required to be very much present, either on base or nearby in Wing City, much of the time. Thrawn spoke well and confidently, though with not a small amount of arrogance, and struck Sayılgan as the kind of person who chafed at the presence of authority. Perhaps his former Empire did not mind so much. When the recording concluded, Sayılgan took the proffered datapad from the clone, setting it in a different spot on his desk, opposite his plain dark blue mug, nodding. "Thank you." He communicated her dismissal with his eyes.

Once she had left, he returned awhile to the emails that had come in from his staff in the past hour, perusing them with all the interest of a laconic cat, before finally picking up his phone to dial Varona. "Sir. We have a problem."

"What is it? I've got my hands full. Is it the damn insurgents again?"

"No, sir," said Sayılgan, sighing. "It's Admiral Thrawn." He looked distantly at a small framed picture of the old Wing City skyline hanging on the far wall in his office, a reprint of a painting that Cranford had commissioned from a local artist nearly two decades ago. The original Government Center occupied center spotlight in it, and though the current edifice was meant to restore and replicate its first predecessor, something had always struck him about the new one. There was some barely discernible difference, though what, he wouldn't have known how to describe exactly.

"Didn't you refer him for court martial?"

"Yes, a few months ago, though the proceedings were waylaid after the last round of skirmishes," Sayılgan said. "He's reached out to me about proposals for a new defense fleet. I hadn't heard about this before, only some rumors. Did he bring this to you, previously?"

"Thrawn didn't come to you first?" Varona sounded momentarily surprised, then his tone shifted to anger. "Of course he didn't." He exhaled forcefully. "Who's his commanding officer? Not you, I take it?"

"Grand Admiral Meaza, sir."

"Meaza Atsnaf Gebrehiwot?"

"Yes, sir. I can ask Grand Admiral Meaza if he has spoken to her, if you want to go that route with this." Sayılgan tapped a finger against his desk, eyeing the datapad warily. "Unless you'd prefer me do something else." He picked up the datapad, looking at its main screen without clicking through anything. "He left a datapad. I assume it has the relevant specs, the schematics, whatever else he put together for that proposal."

"Call Meaza. Look through the datapad. I'll wait for your report on how you want to proceed with this." Varona muttered something not quite audible. "And check with intelligence, too. I want their take. Thrawn pisses me off. He doesn't know how to stay in his fucking lane. So. I don't want to do anything until I know there's a damn good reason to. Got it?"

"Roger that, sir." Sayılgan disconnected. He leaned back in his chair, as far as it would go, which wasn't particularly far, and stared at the datapad in his hand. The Terran Armed Forces had come a long way since the days of the TLF, when there was no real military to speak of, so much as a ragtag guerrilla force up against impossible odds with the Tripartite Coalition's occupation forces. He'd seen them come from the days when Terra's soldiers relied on improvised weapons and duct-taped ships to forming an actual fighting force with multiple service branches, albeit a small, beleaguered, and perpetually underfunded one. He smiled, softly. Maybe now would be the time to change that. He just wished that Haima and Cranford might still be alive to see it, and that their dear friend Ari were somewhere other than prison. None of it, really, had ever been possible without her.