And the Band Played On (Command Meeting)
And the Band Played On
Summary: First command meeting after Regas' death.
Date: 95 ACH
Related Logs: None. Regas is dead.

Ward Room Genesis - Deck 11
95 ACH 23797 Souls

The Ward room is used for meetings. Carpeting covers the floor in a muted gray/blue color. Colonial flags line along one wall, representing all the colonies. A sideboard for refreshments is along one wall and a large conference table sits in the center with a dozen, comfortable chairs around it.

Having placed the call for this meeting, Salin had made his way to the Ward Room early, taking the time to put out a coffee pot and mugs as well as a water glass at every seat. Having claiming the seat that Fotilas typically used, he's pouring over a couple of documents that are displaying atop his folder and he stops only as people begin to enter. There's a nod to each and he's making a general motion towards the table.

Gaelan steps in to the room, binder under his arm. A brief salute is given to the X-Ray as he watches him the entire time as he moves to his typical perch and settles into it. Setting the binder down he opens it and begins to sift through the papers within it.

Rhea is punctual, dressed up in her blues, and possessed of an air of tension that's unusual for the straightforward ChEng. Nevertheless, she's cool and confident enough as she makes her way in. Coming to attention, saluting Salin. "Colonel." She's brought her standard clipboard with her. It's a bit thicker with papers than usual. Once said salute is acknowledged and protocol done with, she'll get herself some coffee and take her usual seat.

Zaharis is a few minutes behind most of the bunch, but that's nothing unusual. Carrying a black folio with the Genesis emblem on it, and with his handheld computer ready for notes, he heads for the table and for his usual seat next to Rhea. Salin gets a somewhat non-regulation salute, before he sits down. "Evening."

Bayless makes her way into the wardroom, pausing to make an attempt at nonchalantly glancing about this area of the ship she's never been in. She snaps a salute to Salin. "Sir." In one hand is a manila folder containing a few sheets of paper, which she takes over to an empty seat and seats herself, silently hoping it's not someone else's usual and customary.

Greje heads in a few moments after the ChEng, laptop bag strap slung across her chest. She hesitates a moment as her eyes direct themselves almost automatically to where the Commander used to sit— she's in brief aporia before Rhea sets a helpful example for her to follow, and after the niceties are finished she's sitting down and setting up her machine— wherever there's a spot.

Salutes are returned and punctuated by a nod of Salin's head and once everyone has taken a seat, he's bringing his hands to rest atop his folder, fingers lacing together, "Before we begin, I want to change the way things have been previously done." He pauses a moment, eyes flickering to each person before he continues, "I've sent through what I plan to talk about, in the order that I plan to discuss it. Your opinions, comments and thoughts are wanted. Honestly and openly. For the purpose of this, my rank is left at the door. I don't want it causing any restrainment in what you have to say. Any questions?"

Gaelan looks over towards Salin, watching the Colonel a moment before leaning back in his chair. Turning in the chair to face him without saying a word. He was brigged less than 24 hours ago, so maybe staying silent is the best option at this point and time.

Zaharis turns on his handheld, where the meeting agenda scrolls up on his screen. He glances at the bullet list and then back at Salin, settling back in his seat and loosely folding his arms.

Bayless simply shakes her head in response to Salin's prompting for questions. She takes a sip of water somewhat tentatively and places the glass far enough away that condensation doesn't flow towards her folder.

Rhea eases back in her chair, though it's inaccurate to say she relaxes. She exchanges a quick look with Zaharis, though there's no hint of the shared smile or silent joke she often seems to be passing with the CMO. A smile *is* offered to Gaelan. Free man as he is. She arches her brow at Salin's 'rank left at the door' comment. But, if she has an opinion on it, she keeps it to herself. "No questions from me. Yet." Her tone suggests some may well be forthcoming as this thing rolls on.

Greje crosses one leg underneath herself as she sits, hunching forward over her laptop keyboard. The laptop starts to make some laptoppish start-up noise, but a finger quickly switches off the tinny speakers. She looks up to Salin and just gives a few degrees' worth of a shake of her head in a negative.

Reed is there, in a chair, with a clipboard and his handheld computer in front of him. No, no questions, as indicated by a shake of the head, but he's not uncomfortable, it appears.

"Alright, then we'll get started." Salin's hands unclasp and he's lifting a pen from his folder before shuffling a few sheets of paper around, "Bullet points one and two are going to blend together, since they go hand in hand." Looking up from the papers, he allows his gaze to float between those gathered as he speaks, "As you are all aware, Commander Regas passed away last evening. For the time being, I have ordered the method of his death to remain classified, known only to the Senior Staff." A pause, "For those of who you are not aware, the Commander committed suicide while I was speaking with him about his latest set of orders." The pen is lifted, ready to make a mark or notation as he continues, "Now, I put forth to each of you: Should this information remain classified, known only to us? Or, should it be made public?"

Rhea looks down at her clipboard. At a printout of the agenda. Focus there. If one were to be looking at her specifically, they might note her mouthing 'Pass away?' with a certain wry quirk of her lips. But she verbalizes nothing for the moment. She snorts, head lifting, apparently reading to ask one of those questions her previous tone promised. "Classified? All due respect, Altair, and forgive my language, I think it'd make a seriously FUBAR'd situation even more supremely frakked if there was an effort to cover this up. People on this ship're already suspicious. Some paranoid, scared, confused. Can't say they're wrong to be, all that's gone on. Frak, I'm some of those things myself. You try to cloak-and-dagger pretty-up this mess, you're just going to make people think the truth is even uglier than it is, and the problems on this ship're just going to get worse."

Zaharis turns the small gray stylus over his fingers once and then twice, slowly. "We have reason to believe," he begins in an even voice, "That there may be inconsistencies in the circumstances surrounding the Commander's death. Given that investigation is ongoing, and considering the highly demoralising impact that this would have upon the fleet, I am not in favour of releasing that specific information at this time. I do, however, acknowledge that there will be a demand for the cause of death, and if it is released I would say we need to be very prepared to deal with the fallout. While not compromising investigation."

Gaelan drums his fingers on the arm of the chair a moment. Glancing around the table a few moments then looking back to Salin. Watching the Colonel a moment the rasped tone of the Marine finally emits, "Out of respect for the Commander, I think the details of exactly how he took his life should be classified. The crew should know only basic information, they do not need gritty details. It's not necessary when we have a bigger concern of just keeping them from going into a panic on the Commander's last orders that were issued to demoralize them further."

Salin turns his gaze towards Rhea, giving her a nod of his head, "Don't apologize, Major. I want and expect honest answers, just like that." Then, he's looking towards Zaharis, giving a slight nod, "Since Zaharis has mentioned it, I've ordered an investigation into the the Commander's death and given complete access to my quarters and all personal effects to the MP's, so that there can be no question of what happened." There's a nod to Gaelan and he's looking around to the rest.

Reed looks at Salin, then, to the others, and back, "I think we just slipped to the second bulletpoint." He looks to Zaharis, "What are the inconsistencies from your end, and have you found anything out of the ordinary from a medical examiners point of view?" He asks with interest.

"I'm inclined to agree with Dr. Zaharis, sir," Bayless replies. "I feel we should have our ducks in a row no matter the choice that's made. My personal opinion though? We're damned if we do and damned if we don't. We keep things mum, rumors circulate, fly through the fleet, and distrust mounts. We broadcast it, and we'll lose at least some of the fleet's confidence in our ability to defend them and lead them to a new home."

"It's not…quite that, sir," Zaharis remarks quietly to Salin. He still uses the sir firmly, despite Salin's earlier statement that his rank is out the door. Looking over at Reed, he says, "The Commander's autopsy showed some chemical abnormalities and unusual stress on blood flow to the brain. At the moment we don't have enough to draw any conclusions, but…it is enough to raise red flags."

Rhea snorts, though Zaharis' words do earn a nod of acknowledgement. "I'll defer to the CMO's wisdom in this matter, so far as the investigation is concerned. But the Raptor's out of the bay on this one, sirs, and there'll be questions we'll need to answer eventually." Her gaze goes to Zaharis then, and she falls quiet. Very, very interested to hear what he has to say on this.

Greje takes a moment, fingers at home position on her keyboard, to acquaint herself with the news, then nods in agreement with Rhea, looking to Salin with a mild sort of steadiness, "Considering the unpopularity of the Commander's last edict, I agree with Major Zimmermann. If there's a cover-up, I doubt it'll take long for someone to suggest he was killed in order to prevent the separation of the fleet. Of course… it may be worthwhile to consider which story would be better for morale in the long run," she muses. No, the scriptures don't say anything against lying. Agamemnon's finest hours were due to his manipulation of information to his troops. She draws her lower lip into her mouth a little as she tries to think through each possibility. She looks to Bayless, "We'll have to tell them something, at some point. Some sort of official message? I'd suggest the truth," she finally declares, after some thought, "As much as it might show weakness, it might also show humanity… form a connection between us and them to let them know we're going through the same things that they are."

Gaelan shakes his head slowly as he taps the binder with his finger, "This was still our Commander up until the point he did what he did. Issue a statement that the matter is under investigation and is at the priority of the Military Police. A statement will be issued with the cause of death at the conclusion of the investigation. Anything before that is pure speculation and just flat out disrespectful." Looking back towards each of the members here he flatly comments in his rasped tone, "You sure as frak wouldn't want any of us treating you like this if you did the same thing. So show the dead a little respect, no matter how much we disagreed with some of his decisions he /was/ our Commander."

Salin's listening to each after Reed raises the issue of the investigation, though in the end, his attention focuses firmly on Zaharis, a brow lifted ever so slightly, "Chemical abnormalities?" A pause and he's giving his head a slight shake, "Can you explain a little more then that?"

Reed drums his fingers on his handheld computer, "I think we could all agree on making sure of our information before anything is released. Therefore I suggest we focus on the investigation before us and determine the details before releasing anything." He looks to Salin, then Zaharis, frowning with a nod at the questions asked about the anomalous chemical findings and the like.

Bayless listens intently to the rebuttals from the remaining inhabitants of the wardroom, but Zaharis' mention of medical anomalies get her attention and her silence for the moment.

Greje's attention lingers on Gaelan a moment and she gives a quiet nod before she joins the rest of the room in staring quizzically at Jesse.

Zaharis glances at Gaelan and then back at Salin. "A short time before the Commander's death he had been smoking a cheroot. Major Zimmermann can confirm that, I believe, and likely Colonel Altair as well. I noticed at autopsy that his body contained a trace of chemicals that one would expect from such, but in quantities far more minute than should have been present. I also noticed tight constriction of the pupils, the opposite effect that one would normally see from his type of trauma to the brain, and a spiked level of adrenaline, among other hormones. I can't immediately draw conclusions as I've said…that would be speculating. However, I don't like it. At all."

There's a nod of agreement towards Reed and then Salin is looking back towards Zaharis. His brow remains arched and as an explanation is given, he's giving a slow nod of his head, "Alright. The moment you know anything or are able to draw a conclusion, Doctor, please send your report through to Carter and Gaelan."

Greje sits up straight and rests one hand on the back of her head, "Do you think he was sick?" she asks Jesse simply, brows furrowed as she tries to get him to elaborate, at least a little. Brain plagues is bad things, yah?

Gaelan looking between Greje and Zaharis he looks back to Salin, "So we just refuse to comment on open investigations. Simple as that." There is a glance back to Zaharis he nods slowly, "As soon as you have something we will add it to our investigation file."

Rhea has her attention fixed on Zaharis, hazel eyes thoughtful. She nods, as to the cheroot. "I can indeed confirm that. I came into the Commander's Quarters when he was finishing up with Major Zaharis. I had some technical logistics issues to suss out with him. Mostly related to the Genesis' preparations to jump. At the time, I wasn't aware of his plan to break the Genesis off from the Fleet, though he did inform me of them as we talked. At the time…" She sighs. Expression going somber. "…if he was in the state of mind to take his own life, I didn't pick up on it, but I'm not psychiatrist. Emotions were running high. I didn't make anymore of it than that at the time. Now…well. Hard not to imagine a lot of things in hindsight."

Reed taptaptaps his fingers on the table before him, then looks to Gaelan, "I take it the Commanders room and personal effects are still under lockdown, so we could get a chemical analysis on the contents of his smoking apparel." He then thinks, and looks to Zaharis, "No one else in the fleet is going to have the background to conduct a medical examination, so you're the authority. If there's anything you want to do to get to the bottom of this, we need to hear it."

Salin's giving another nod of his head, "Nor, did he seem to be in a state of mind to take his own life after Major Zimmermann left when I arrived." He's settling his hands lightly on the desk, "We were having a conversation and his wireless rang. He said he had to use the head and asked me to get it. I did and about thirty second later .. well, you all know the rest." He's looking towards Gaelan and then Reed, nodding, before looking over towards Zaharis.

"I don't have enough information to say yes or no to that, Captain," Zaharis replies to Greje. "Facts first. We're still working on those." A look to Rhea and he nods. "I wouldn't advise jumping to conclusions based on perceived mental states. There are just too many variables here." Then he nods to Salin, Reed, and Gaelan. "I asked Lieutenant Shem to get me the cheroot butts, since he has access to the room. I have the feeling we'll need to be testing a lot more, but we'll start there. Anything I know, you'll know."

Gaelan reaches up and idly scratches his eyebrow as he looks about the table, "The room is secured. The investigation is active. I highly recommend that we have this conversation with Lieutenant Shem present so he can make sure his MPs are properly informed of the details so they can finish their investigation properly. While they report to me, I do not want misinterpreted information going to the S2." Looking between Rhea and Salin, "Since this is all new developments. I recommend you all schedule necessary time with the the Lieutenant and his men to give your statements. I do not think this is the time and place to have an investigative pow-wow when we got other matters to to discuss."

Bayless maintains her silence at the moment. The Commander's state of mind and the possibility of him being poisoned or at least mentally ill would seem to lend the issue to being tabled for the moment, as would the fact that the investigation is still underway.

Greje hms in agreement to Jesse, lower lip drawing further into her mouth as she takes a few notes, fingers moving quietly over the keyboard.

Zaharis seems quite fine with not discussing this anymore. He has nothing more to add for the time being anyway. "Again, let's not speculate. Those are the facts we have. There are no conclusions right now and there won't be until this is finished." He nods to Gaelan.

Rhea nods to Gaelan. "I'll contact the lieutenant as soon as we're through here. Set up a proper pow-wow."

"As will I." Salin offers before looking between those gathered, "Alright. Are we all prepared to move onto the next set of bullet points?"

Reed nods to the progress and looks to Salin, unless someone else jumps in.

Bayless nods once in response to Salin, perhaps relieved to be moving on.

Gaelan nods as he leans back in his chair again, pulling the glass of water with him as he takes a slow sip of the contents.

Zaharis turns the little wheel on his handheld, scrolling the screen down. The bulletpoints move.

Rhea has to look at her paper again to see what bullet points are upcoming. It doesn't appear she has them bulletted. She takes her pen, dotting some bullets in, brow slightly furrowed. She looks ready to proceed, in any case.

Greje is typing, but takes a moment to glance from the screen to Salin and give a faint downward tip of her chin in agreement.

When no objections are offered, Salin's giving a slight nod of his head, "Very well. The next three points are related to Command positions." His pen is settled and he's again looking between everyone who is present, "The first is the position of Fleet Commander. Normally, in a situation like this, the XO assumes the position." A pause and he's clasping his hands together, "I'm prepared to do this, but only if the Senior Staff finds it appropriate and will give their backing."

Zaharis is silent for a while, watching Salin. It's not an overly critical look, but the CMO is a blunt man and it's not getting turned off for a meeting. "Colonel," he says. "I respect your rank and the faith Regas obviously placed in you. But I need to ask you this, and ask you seriously. Have you ever before been in command during a combat situation?"

Gaelan takes a slow sip as he leans forward and sets the glass down on the table. Looking between Zaharis and Salin he decides to remain quiet for the moment.

Bayless keeps her mouth shut behind a sip of her water glass, waiting for Salin's response before she says anything.

What a good question. And one Greje would never have thought to ask. Which is why she's letting the actual military sorts hash this bit out. Not that she's not paying close attention, but she seriously doubts she'll have anything useful to add.

Reed looks at Zaharis, then Salin, waiting to listen to the response, scratching the side of his neck.

When Zaharis springs the first question, Salin's turning his attention towards him, giving a slight shake of his head, "No. I've not been in Command of a vessel during a combat operations. Like most of you, I'm trained in the most common and effective tactics to use, should I be found in such a position."

"The Navy isn't a democracy, Colonel, and I won't pretend it is," Rhea says. "None of us leave rank at the door, much as we might like to pretend. The chain of command is all that keeps us together sometimes. Especially times like this. Anyone who sits in the commander's chair has my backing, no hesitation." Not that any of that contained an opinion on Salin himself. But it seems to be all she's inclined to say.

Bayless says with no wavering, "Mine's to serve and safeguard this fleet, Colonel. Same as everyone on this boat. You step up, I'll have your back."

Gaelan watches Salin a moment then looks to Zaharis curiously, "Major, who would you recommend in lieu of the Colonel. We are not exactly at prime pickings of Battlestar Commanders in this fleet after all." There is a glance to Rhea and nods but doesn't add any comments.

"Thank you for your honesty," Zaharis answers Salin, nodding. Seems that was a personal test issued and passed. "This isn't a situation where I feel we get to choose our leadership, much as Major Zimmermann says. There is a succession of power that must be followed, period. Overturning that would cause all sorts of problems that we don't need. You are the commander of this fleet." He looks at Gaelan. "No-one. I believe I'm allowed to be honest as anyone else is here, in what I say."

Reed watches the exchange between Salin and Zaharis, nodding slightly as he settles back in his chair, picking up his computer and looking over something for a moment. "Agreed. Fleet Commander falls into final authority on fleet dispensation asset allocation and committal, and operational approval. Big picture man. This arrangement is the best solution I can see to filling that position.

There's look towards Rhea, Gaelan, Zaharis and Bayless, giving each a slight nod of his head, "Unfortunately, this is not a democracy. But, by the same token, we find ourselves in a very strange position. But, thank you." He's looking back between those gathered, "Very well. If there are no objections, this item is closed and we can move on to the topic of Fleet XO."

Greje remains quiet, shifting to one side in her seat. Reed's mouthful of military jargon draws her attention, especially, and she takes a moment to type it out… fleet… dispensation… asset.. allocation… and committal. She eyes the words on the screen for a moment after she types them out, but still doesn't raise any sort of cry. She does look up to Salin briefly as if just realizing he might want to hear something from her. She doesn't interrupt the others' discussion, however— but if Salin happens to look at her she gives him a tight-lipped but approving nod.

Gaelan looks back to Salin and nods to him. The glass gets pulled up in another sip and set back down as he casts a brief glance to the paper on the top of the small stack in his binder.

Zaharis turns the wheel on his handheld again. Bulletpoint scroll power.

Rhea objects not to moving on. She's not tracking her bullet points very carefully. Her eyes are on the faces around the table, and she's sipping at her coffee.

Reed sets down his computer, and folds his hands, looking about then to Salin as he moves onward.

Bayless opens up her folder, while giving Salin no less attention than she did beforehand. Anyone looking her direction would see that it contains personnel briefs of the various members of the Air Wing, a couple of which have "DECEASED" stamped across them in big red letters.

"Normally, the Fleet XO lies aboard the the same vessel as the Fleet CO." Salin's beginning, looking between the others gathered, "This is something that I want to change, for two reasons. The first, is that if something should happen to the Genesis or to CIC, losing both the Fleet CO and XO would be a very large set back. The second, is that I am aware of limitations in certain areas. As such, last evening I had asked Colonel Carter to assume the position of Fleet XO until things could get sorted out. I want him to retain that position, as well as that as CO of the Hera."

Zaharis seems to have nothing to say, as there was no question posed. His thumb scrolls the screen to the next bulletpoint.

Gaelan looks over to Reed and nods slowly in approval, looking back to Salin as his arms fold in front of him as he leans against the desk.

Greje looks around the table, as if wondering whether this was a point for discussion or not. Seeing nobody else speaking, she coughs a little and flickers a hand timidly up into the air, still not sure if this is something open for discussion.

Rhea holds up a finger. To scratch her nose. She has no objection. Though she nods to Greje in an encouraging sort of way. "I don't know much about bullets, Captain, but we're all here to jaw."

Bayless nods her assent to the reorganization plan, like the others not feeling offering a comment.

Catching sight of Greje's timidly raised hand, Salin's giving a slight nod of his head towards her, "What's on your mind, Captain?"

Reed looks around at the quiet, then to Rhea as she speaks, "Yes, someone frakking say something." He says looking around at the others.

Zaharis taps his screen with his stylus, scribbling something on it. Takes a little while for him to finish dumping his brain, then he looks over towards the sounds of voices.

"Ah— right," Greje expresses somewhat awkwardly. "Could I suggest, Colonel," she addresses herself to Reed, "That since you'll be holding two posts, you should find an assistant, or… apprentice, or something? I know we've got a severe lack of people with training in positions of military leadership, and spreading that knowledge seems like a good use of time. Maybe if you can find someone to understudy you for a while, as it were, and then take over one of the two posts, so that our command ranks can be a little less… depleted?" she suggests.

Listening to Greje, Salin gives a slight smile as he nods his head, "In the past, the Fleet XO has been dual-tasked. They've been both the Fleet XO and a specific Ship XO. In this instance, Colonel Carter just happens to be Fleet XO and a Ship CO." He looks over towards Reed, "You have anything to add to that?"

"An XO, you mean, Captain?" Rhea says to Greje. But she nods at it. "Both ships need one. I'm sure that's on our points somewhere."

Reed nods to Salin, then looks to Greje, "Fleet XO is a position of overall authority, it's not ship specific, and the position is mostly one of standby leadership. If the upcoming Genesis XO wishes the position of Fleet XO, then that can be transferred to them with relative ease, if a case is presented for that, however, as the ChEng points out, the Captain has a point. It's a good point, and in fact, a bulletted point."

Zaharis scribbles something else and then sits back, listening to the discussion. Appointments of tactical officers isn't generally within his sphere of expertise, so he remains content to listen for now.

Bayless is also content to listen in silence, as her specific set of bullet points on the meeting agenda haven't yet been brought to the table.

"Alright, since there are no real objections to that, baring no further questions from the Chaplain, we'll move on." Salin then looks between the gathered group, "Genesis needs an XO, plain and simple. I can not do everything aboard the ship and I wouldn't presume to. Our available list of personnel is shrinking, so if you feel tha someone would better suited for the position, speak now."

"Oh—" Greje sort of stares between Reed and Rhea for a moment, then gives a faint smile, "Yes, that must be what I meant," she adds, folding her hands in her lap for a moment. See? This is why she doesn't open her mouth. The real sailors have everything figured out. And bulletpointed. She goes back to the list.

Bayless grins slightly to Greje, taking a sip of water as the subject of picking Genesis' new XO presents itself.

Gaelan eyes slide to Salin curiously, "Someone better than who? Are you asking us to elect an XO?" The Marines brow furrows a bit as he watches the Colonel.

Zaharis glances at Gaelan and then back at Salin. He too has a quizzical expression on after Salin's choice of words.

Rhea offers Greje a faint grin. The ChEng isn't much on bullet points, either. She looks rather impatient with the paper-pushing, as the matter of fact. "Elect? Again, Colonel, the Navy isn't a democracy. If you're looking for our input, we can give that. I'd put in it should be someone with front-line combat command experience, given our current situation and the gaps in your own background."

There's a flicker of Salin's eyes towards Gaelan and Salin is shaking his head, "No, I'm not asking for you to elect one." He pauses as Rhea speaks and he's nodding his head, "Exactly. I'm looking for input. You will all need to report to this individual, so your input holds merit in it's choosing. In the end, the decision will remain in my court."

Zaharis asks, "Is there a list of people you're considering? That would help. Right now I'm not even sure who the pool is, in your opinion."

Gaelan just watches Salin a moment and comments in his rasped tone, "Sir, why don't you just state who you intend to name then see if we have any dissent to the idea of your choice. Then you can reconsider. We are military, we don't do well with this whole giving us options to choose our command structure, Sir."

Bayless nods. "I have to admit to also being interested in hearing your short list, sir."

Zaharis bites back at smile at the way Gaelan puts it, clearing his throat to look more serious again.

Reed settles back. This is, simply a Genesis Matter. He might be considering him and Salin leaving, throwing a knife into the room and shutting out the lights. First one out alive is XO.

There's a shift towards Gaelan and Salin is offering a faint chuckle, "Because, I tend to like input on things." He's looking towards Bayless, giving a nod and then shifting over towards Zaharis, "My list is short. You and Zimmermann are both on it. I have a feeling that neither of you will accept it. From there, it's down to personnel files from the list of available Captains."

Rhea's eyebrows arch at that. "I'm not qualified for it, Colonel," she says flatly. "My skill-set is very narrow and highly specialized. I'm an engineer. I'm not trained as a Tac officer and my combat experience is limited to what we've all been through these past months. There are several very good reasons engineers don't tend to slide up the command track. In any case, I'm of more use where I am."

Zaharis offers Salin a slight smile. "The faith is appreciated, sir, but your feeling is right." He gives no reasons, just that. Exhaling softly, he nods. "Honestly, it's my feeling that you should look at that list of Captains and decide between yourself and Colonel Carter. We in turn will accept that decision. Right now we have more to deal with that needs all our input."

Gaelan slowly looks between Rhea and Zaharis, nodding slowly to their comments. Finally looking back towards Salin he comments, "Sir, your most tactically adept Captain is Captain Fotilas." Reaching over he picks up his glass and takes another sip.

Greje watches Rhea, then Jesse, then, at Jesse's goading, looks back to the list. Oh. Yes. She fidgets briefly, reversing the way her legs are arranged half-under her looking from side to side, then to the coffee carafe. She untangles her legs once again from the knot she'd been trying to tie them into, half-standing and taking the carafe to pour herself a little less than a half-cup, looking around the table again to see if anyone wants the carafe passed in his or her direction.

There's a quick smile towards Rhea and then to Zaharis, "I figured as much. Very well, I'll take this outside of here and you'll be notified of the decision." The pen is lifted and a quick note is taken before he's looking to Galean, "I do intend to speak with Fotilas at some point." He's looking around again, "Alright, The next point I want to touch on is the Direction of the Fleet. First and foremost, it -will not- be split up. The Genesis and the Pandora will be remaining with the rest of the fleet." A quick pause, "Second, we are presented with two options. We can continue around the Colonies or we can set out for deep space, in search of a new home. I'm going to speak to Colonel Carter on this, but if you have particular thoughts. Or thoughts or concerns have been raised by your staff, please bring them to our attention later. In conjunction with this, I want each of you to do a review on your department and to let myself and Colonel Carter know if there's anything we can do to help ease things within it. Don't ask for personnel, obviously, as we're all struggling in that area. See us in person or send us a memo. Either method is acceptable."

Zaharis scribbles again, then looks over at Salin, "A quick comment on the fleet in general if I may, Colonel?"

Reed scratches his ear briefly watching the cross talk, then looking to Zaharis with some interest. Seems he's not inputting at the moment.

Gaelan nods slowly as he looks to his binder, lifting through some papers he skims over the notes he made and nods as he restacks the paperwork. Looking up he glances between the two attentively.

Salin nods quickly towards Zaharis, "Go ahead."

"Fotilas is as solid a man as any in the Fleet. If he'd be willing to take the post again," Rhea says. If. He already escaped it once, smart bugger. Her eyes narrow slightly as Salin talks. She seems to have some Thoughts on that but stows them for the moment, until Zaharis' comment gets aired.

"We've had a great deal of argument over what to do with and about the thousands of civilians over there," Zaharis says, folding two fingers over the stylus. "And none of that seems to have ever involved the voices of the civilians themselves. Every time I've gone over to check on the Carina clinic, the attitude towards us has been getting more and more reserved. Even fearful of accepting the help of volunteers from our Sickbay. I've overheard people saying they're afraid we're going to do all sorts of things to them. We need cohesion with them, Colonel, and not just patting them on the head and assuring them we're not going anywhere."

There's a quick look back towards Rhea and Salin gives a nod, "Noted. I'll speak with him." Then, he's looking back over towards Zaharis, "I'm aware of that. I was in the process of working on several things when the Commander pulled me off them to attend to the duties. I want to see the Liaison returned to get with the Civilians and found out what it is that they want. It's something that certainly bares more thought and discussion."

The look on Zaharis' face is the kind that's heard that answer before. Maybe a couple times. He nods nevertheless, falling silent.

Reed looks between Salin and Zaharis, settling back on Zaharis, "Got anything in mind, Major?"

"I have to agree with the doctor, sir," Bayless offers. "Relations between the military and the civilians have been taking one hit after another since we met up with Hera and their fleet. There needs to be an olive branch sent, as well as a guarantee that we aren't going to run roughshod over them the way Pegasus did."

Greje gives another brief flicker of her hand upward before remembering that she's just supposed to speak.

Rhea looks like she has something more to say on that subject but she stows it for now. Apparently it'll keep. She blinks a bit at her List 'o Points, before her gaze goes to Greje.

Zaharis nods a bit to Bayless, then looks at Reed. "Appointing a liaison would be a good start. Let them give the civilians a chance to say what would help rather than us deciding what would help."

Gaelan looks between the group assembled and nods, "Well we need to first help the Civilians secure their own ships, because I am hearing idle chatter of death threats to whomever is organizing the civilians." Finally his eyes slide over to Reed and he lifts his hand and points to Reed, "He should be your liaison. Colonel Carter has the most experience dealing with civilian contractors on the PAS and he also is the Commander of one of their former vessels."

Turning his attention to Bayless, Salin is giving a nod, "I agree, entirely. I was working with the Civilians before my appointment to the position of XO and we had several ventures underway. Unfortunately, they were shelved for the time being. I wanted to see them finally put into place and I want to see this tension eased, even if it means I have to go to the Carina and speak with them in person." He's looking to Zaharis, and then to Gaelan and finally, over to Reed, "Congratulations Colonel, I don't think anyone can argue the points that were just made."

Zaharis looks briefly like he might've had something to argue. But he just folds his hands.

"Do you really have time for that, Colonel?" Rhea asks Reed. And Salin and Gaelan as well. "Not that you aren't qualified, but you've got a ship to run, along with the other concerns in the wider Fleet. This is something that could turn into a massive detail headache. Perhaps it needs someone who can dedicate their full time to it."

"I also wanted to bring up the civilian survivors," Greje begins her remarks, "I made it to a portion of the meeting in which they were discussing the formation of a civilian government, and mentioned that the Commander had given me permission to consecrate a sanctuary or temple on the Carina. Since then… not just a sanctuary, but an entire temple complex seems to be springing up almost overnight inside the stadium," she remarks, for those who don't know it, yet. "It's remarkable. The sanctuary itself is a Sanctuary of Zeus the Savior and Divine Xenos— for those of you who've never been to one, one of the major functions of this sort of sanctuary is to take in and feed those who don't have anywhere to live or food to eat. Which brings me to the major point I was curious about… for now those who are working on the temple are simply taking donations from those in the fleet who still have extra supplies of food… a sort of re-distribution center. But those supplies aren't going to last forever. Are we going to take on the responsibility of feeding the fleet once their supplies are depleted?"

Reed looks at Greje, then to Salin, "Oh, I think I have a couple of points to bring up, not the least of which the ChEng brings up now. I don't have the time to dedicate. I can go over there and face the public, but not to invest the manhours per week in handling the concerns of twenty-plus thousand people. Handling a hundred or so civilians under contract to the Military who have a clear understanding of their roles in construction of a space station is vastly different than dealing with the cultures, subcultures and groups within the fleet of ships we have here." He listens to Greje's concerns, "Finding food supplies is one of our largest fleet concerns."

"In all honesty, I think we're going to have a hard time finding anyone who could dedicate all their time to it. Doing so, would mean we lose that person from their respective department. Whether it be a Doctor, a Technician or a Marine." Salin's offering, "And clearly, none of these departments can afford the loss of a personal. As such, it's going to have to be a group effort." He looks to Reed, "Colonel, I'd like you to oversee it. Task individuals that you feel would be able to handle working with the civilians, amongst their regular work. Try and split the load across a couple of people, rather then one." He's looking over towards Greje, "As Colonel Carter has said, finding a reliable food source is a priority. A much needed once."

Gaelan fingers drum on the binder as he nods the comments made. Looking to Zaharis he motions to him, "Doc, I want to speak with you after this. I may have a suggestion I want to run by you first."

"From what I saw, we're going to run out of food supplies before they do," Zaharis replies to that. "It may be us at their doorstep." He nods slightly to Reed and Rhea then. The idea of putting a Colonel who's also the Hera CO and the Fleet's XO as a liaison clearly isn't sitting well with him. He then looks at Gaelan. "Sure, Major."

"Personnel seems the ideal department to pull a PR liaison from," Rhea says. "In any case, I'd like to think that someone can be found to give it their full attention if it's going to be a priority. I'm sure there's untapped talent among our junior officers out there if we look for it." But the food thing is a more pressing matter. She nods. "Our water reclamation capabilities can keep us all drinking just fine, but we're going to need to find food. And fuel, after that. "

"We have two options," Bayless offers. "Raid the colonies for sustainable food sources, or take our chances in the black that we'll find a world with something to sustain us. And we're going to need more than food. We need raw materials for fabrication and repairs, tyllium… we're running on fumes on damn near everything." She nods in Rhea's direction in agreement with her.

"If there's anything on the Colonies which hasn't been tainted by radiation," Greje muses. "Brother Karan has been growing some food items from some seeds he had with him when he came aboard. It looks like there'll be some garden areas once the temple complex is completed, but I don't know how long it'll take to get anything near a substantial harvest out of it, if we can at all with the facilities we have."

Gaelan looks between the group as he comments, "We need to spin down anything that isn't critical for survival and preserve what we got. We had some good raids in the past, we need to recon similar locations to stock up. The Pandora needs to become our cargo ship on supplies. We need to fill her to the brim one everything we need to survive long term." Looking to Reed, "Until the Colonel can get us somewhere to settle onto."

Listening, Salin 'hrrms' softly, "Alright. We'll get with Personnel and see if they have anyone to spare, in terms of the Liaison roll." Then, he's giving a slight nod of his head, "Which, goes to the Direction of the Fleet. We have to make a choice. Do we stay around the Colonies and try and raid them for food and supplies? Or do we risk it in the black and hope that we come across a world that we can make use of?"

"If we're discussing striking out," Zaharis says, flipping the stylus over his fingers, "Then at least we need to start with as many resources as we can possibly grab before we go. We know we can't stay around the Colonies. They're infested."

Reed nods to Bayless, "This is why we raided the Visser Base. To give us a direction and idea on how to find what we need while we're out there trying to locate a new home, using the map we collected from there." He explains, then nods to Zaharis, "So we need to make sure we have everything we can get before we go."

Rhea nods to Gaelan on that. "I concur about the Pandora. At the moment, it's a good deal of wasted space. It is useful as a space for classified projects, given its security capabilities, but that won't take the whole ship. My snipes *could* start stripping the non-essential areas for base metals. Bunks, unused rooms, head sinks…an assaultstar isn't small." She nods to Zaharis and Reed. "I concur. I'll also have my people go through Engineering's refuel records. Perhaps we can pinpoint outlying tyllium stations that might still be accessible to us, to raid."

Bayless says, "Much as I hate the idea of graverobbing, we stand a better chance of getting what we need from what's left of the Colonies than finding it out in uncharted space. I agree that we should scrounge everything we can in terms of supplies while we're here and bug out once we're stocked with sustainable supplies."

Greje looks from Salin to Jesse, then to Reed and back to Salin, "If you end up planning more raids on the Colonies, is there any chance we could attempt to pick up more survivors? I know we're crowded as-is, but… we know there are still people back there… in some places, at least."

Gaelan looks over to Greje, "The time we would waste trying to hunt people out of their homes and herd them to our ships would cost us more lives than if we just focus on the supplies. Those we run across and are willing, we take with us. Those that are not we don't need to waste the food on." Drumming his fingers on the binder before closing it, "This is a war after all."

Listening to each, Salin's giving a nod of his head, "Then it seems like people have their necessary tasks. Major, you have lee-way with your snipes to strip anything non-critical from the Pandora for us as a supplies." This is said to Rhea before he's looking over towards Greje, "Major Gaelan is right. If we come across survivors, they'll be picked up. But actively searching the colonies for them will cost us lives and supplies." A quick look around and Salin is settling his gaze on Bayless, "When we're finished here, I need a moment of your time, Captain." Then, it's back to the crowd, "Is there anything else that needs to be brought up? Beyond the obvious planning and logistical stages of picking a place to scout out."

Greje narrows her eyes a little, brow furrowing at Gaelan, though her voice maintains its usual meekness, "Against the Cylons… not against those who survived their attacks," she reminds him. She looks to Salin, then, "There was…" she begins strongly, then, faltering a little, "One thing, sort of…"

"I'll see to it, Colonel," Rhea says simply to Salin. She's done, though she sticks around to take notes and sip cold coffee.

Bayless looks towards Salin and nods once. "Understood, sir."

"I have something I'd like to chat about," Zaharis says. "If you, Carter, and Zimmermann could be available for a few minutes. Tonight or tomorrow. Just a question on something technical that doesn't need to hold up the whole room." He finally fishes the cigarette from behind his ear, looking over at those still speaking.

Reed looks to Greje, then to Zaharis, nodding, "Sure." He says before he looks back to Greje.

Salin's looking to Zaharis, giving a quick nod of his head, "Tomorrow work?" There's a flicker of his eyes to the others and then he's looking over towards Greje, "Go ahead, Captain."

Gaelan eyes narrow slightly to Greje as he smirks before commenting, "Remind me to take you on our next ground assault. May change your perspective of combat priorities." Looking to Zaharis as he comments, "I will come find you tomorrow discuss my suggestion. It can wait until then." Looking back to Salin he adds, "I have nothing else to bring up."

"Tomorrow's fine, sir," Zaharis nods to Salin. He looks over at Gaelan. "You sure, Gaelan? We can talk right after this if you want."

Rhea nods to Zaharis. "I'm available as you need, Major. Now or tomorrow."

Greje takes a short, steadying breath. Phew. "Okay. I know there are probably very few if any of you who care, but as it's part of my responsibilities to this crew to endeavor at all times to keep the crew and the ship in the good graces of the Lords… I feel like I should let you know that one of the Lords has been rather severely trespassed against by someone in this fleet," she reports, looking, for once, nigh deadly-serious, a strange look on the usually quite easy-going Priestling — who's gone on record, after all, as saying that claiming there are no gods is not a religious offense. "I've been researching ways to attempt to placate the Lady, but I am not her Anointed, and have no real jurisdiction to punish the offender, as the offense was not a matter of blood guilt." She sort of stares balefully at her hands as she sums up the problem.

Reed blinks, unsure, "Um.. Which Lord, and who offended them, and.. what happened?" He asks, not sure what's going on. Just, more information.

Zaharis scratches his eyebrow.

Listening, Salin's allowing one of his brows to lift slightly, but he's silent, since Reed asked the question that he was thinking.

Bayless blinks once, then twice, then directs her eyes sloooowly towards Greje.

Gaelan brow furrows then he just blinks. Not entirely expecting that response to threatening to dragging her on a combat mission.

Rhea's eyes narrow at Greje, but she has no comment about this.

Greje shakes her head slowly, "I won't reveal the nature of the crime," yes — crime, "And I don't want the name of the perpetrator spread— especially considering that Artemis was the Lady offended by the crime. Artemis is rather famously easy to come to rage, and she and her brother Apollo, along with Poseidon, are the only three Lords with recorded and decently substantiated instances in non-Scriptural history of taking vengeance for slights to their honors. Artemis' modes of vengeance include plagues of wild beasts which overrun cities… stillbirths… and mysterious rashes of deaths among women in the community housing the sinner." She coughs, "Since the incident, we have witnessed the unrelated losses of… Major Rue, who was devoted to the Goddess, Ensign Leto, Captain Nikos, Crewman Logo, Private First Class Ramiro, and the civilian pilot Ms. Algos, along with the passengers in her shuttle. All in the span of a few days after the incident. I'm not one prone to superstition, but the odds here seem fairly long, to me, and considering the other rather direct and unusual contact I've had with the Lords since the attacks… suffice it to say I am -highly- interested in making the Goddess pleased with us again."

Reed lifts a hand, "Okay, um, I suggest two things. First, no scriptural background, and second, condensing what you want from us, how we can assist in this." He shrugs, "You're the Chaplain, what do you need?"

Zaharis raises an eyebrow, comment drily, "If deaths are a sign of the gods' displeasure, then what did we do before the deaths of several billion people? Insult the whole pantheon?" He sits up and exhales a bit, looking uncomfortable. "I'm not sure it's right to be putting religious matters of justice under the emblem of official military business. That's…a blending of lines I'm not prepared to sanction."

Bayless chokes down any thoughts she had at expressing offense at Rue's disappearance and Kalypso's murder as divine retribution, she's got respect for those of the cloth as much as the next Colonial, after all… still, she's a bit dumbstruck as Greje speaks.

Greje looks to Jesse briefly, "Those deaths were, of course, all related," she points out. "One… very large and very unfortunate incident," she sighs, "These incidents were all unrelated, as far as I can tell. They may have simply been a coincidence… but I don't think they were," she simply sets that out there, looking back to Reed, "An Anointed of Artemis would be nice… The Goddess' secrets are… were… closely held. Barring that, I would ask for a victim for a live sacrifice… but we don't have any of those on hand, either. I'll keep doing research, see if I can find something that might help. Until then, I'd ask that any of you with religious tendencies keep the Goddess' Honors foremost in your minds during prayers. That may be all we -can- do. I've been considering asking the religious community as a whole for aid in prayers, but… I don't want to announce something like this until I find some path to offer them of reconciliation with the Lady, as well. When people believe they're being cursed, they sometimes have ways of making it come true."

Reed nods, "That last I'll go along with, yes, and I don't think we have much chance of sacrificing anything, unless a duck would do." He sits back, "So.. Pray if you do so." He nods, "That I think we can handle."

Zaharis raises an eyebrow as the part of what he said that was actually important goes ignored. He just picks up his handheld and turns it off.

Bayless nods to Greje and gathers up her papers before placing them back in her folder.

Rhea voices no objections to Greje's words, but she does become studiously interested in her clipboard. Flip, flip, flip.

Greje does look back at Jesse and his raised brow, "I hear you, Jesse," she adds, "I'm not asking for any official military action to be taken. I'm not looking to demote the guilty party or… anything else. I'll take care of it the best I can, I just thought that as the head of the Ecclesiastical Department I should let people know that something is wrong, from my perspective. I was also required by the Commander to clear all rites I was to perform with him, first. If I find a rite which I'm qualified to perform, I'd like the explanation of why I'll want to perform it to already have been stated."

Reed nods, "So noted." He says to Greje, "Well, Good luck on your search for a solution, Captain. If there's nothing else, we're done here." He sets his computer on his clipboard, and nods to Salin who has to go to the bathroom badly after all that water and coffee drinking.

Bayless nods once and collects her file before heading into an unobtrusive corner of the room to await Salin's return for that piece of business he'd mentioned earlier.

Zaharis stands up when the leash is released, looking at the engineer next to him. "Zimm, when you have a minute can I babble at you? I need to be learned good on something techy, and I know how you love schooling my ignorant ass."

Reed rises as well, , taking his computer and clipboard, looking at Zaharis and Zimmermann, "Shall we go and have that talk about things? I like watching schooling too."

Greje shuts down her laptop and cautiously puts it away in its case. Slipping the strap over her shoulder and draining the end of her coffee, she stands and goes.

Greje leaves for Corridor 11C [O].
Greje has left.

Rhea stands, placing her clipboard under her arm and crooking a faint smile at Zaharis. "I'll be gentle with you, Jesse. Here, or do you want to wander?"

Zaharis looks over at Reed, then at both. "My place? I'm just about out of booze but I might be able to drip three shots out of what's left."

Reed nods to Zaharis, "Fine with me, lead on." He says, falling in with the Z Patrol.

You head towards Corridor 11C.

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