Sunday, November 6, 2016

Sunday Snippet: Differences Settled

November 6, 2016

Wow, October flew by and I have no doubt November will do the same. It's crazy how fast time speeds along toward the end of the year.

The Walking Dead had a great episode. I really wanted to see where Carol and Morgan ended up. Will probably watch The Talking Dead first tonight.

Gotham keeps me coming back. Very interested in the potential twist thrown in at the end of last week's episode.

The Flash and Agents of SHIELD had great episodes. Very cool to see movement on both fronts.

Arrow, as always, makes me happy. I really like where everyone is headed and I'm definitely interested in discovering who's behind the armor pulling strings. Gonna be really disappointed if it ends up being Malcolm Merlyn. LOL

Legends of Tomorrow delivered an excellent episode. I'm kind of excited about the changes in Ray's status and situation. I love the idea of pairing him with Mick.

MacGyver had a fun episode. I love Jack's weird brand of humor. Looking forward to seeing the rivalry with Murdoc begin next week.

Finished up my rewatch of Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries and getting ready to start the fifth season of Longmire. Looking forward to watching Katee Sackhoff again.

That's it for television this week. Tonight's post is from Differences Settled, a novella about a couple of ace pilots who have to go undercover and are given carte blanche to do whatever is necessary to get the job done… regulations be damned.

Here's the mini-blurb:

Regan Tiedt and Finn O'Kellen are transferred to a new ship under difficult circumstances and find they have to settle quite a few differences with their new crew mates… and their commanding officer.

And a sneaky peek…

Admiral Marshall Grant gazed at his two best pilots. "Tiedt, O'Kellen, I have a problem you two are particularly qualified to help solve." He folded his hands in front of him.
Regan Tiedt took the bait first, as expected. "You want us to whip someone into shape?" Excitement filled her tone.
Her counterpoint, Finn, shook his head. "Nah. Can't be that." He crossed his arms over his chest.
Grant quirked an eyebrow. "And if it is?" O'Kellen wouldn't take long to figure things out.
Finn narrowed his gaze. "Then it's bigger than taking a new pilot and putting them through a twenty-four special." O'Kellen referred to the time period he and Regan dedicated to bringing a transfer up to snuff aboard the Holyoke, the flagship of the Royal Andromedean fleet. "And it's not a half-cock, because our squadrons are flying like well-oiled machines right now."
Grant bit back a smile. Even seasoned pilots got a twelve-hour run-through when they arrived for duty. And O'Kellen didn't boast when he claimed no one on their current roster needed a boost.  Which made the timing perfect for what Marshall needed them for.
He gave a brief nod. "True. The problem is bigger than Holyoke pilots. In fact, it doesn't involve pilots at all." Opening a file, he tapped on the pages and a holoscreen appeared. "The Wellingstone is under the command of Candace Craig—"
Regan cut in. "The cowboy commander. She's got a rep for playing by her own rules." She frowned. "And not telling anyone else what they are."
Grant inclined his chin. "And that's exactly why I need you two to be my eyes and ears on her ship." He scrolled through several pages and stopped on a personnel roster. "As you can see, the list of injuries and reprimands is twice the normal average for a battle cruiser and the admiralty has concerns." Leaning back, he gave his pilots a few moments to scan the file.
O'Kellen broke the silence first. "What's the objective for sending us in?" He uncrossed his arms and eased forward, resting his elbows on his knees.
Grant closed the file and the screen disappeared. "Figure out if Craig is crossing lines she shouldn't be. She was fast-tracked up the chain of command and if she can't handle the mantle of responsibility, the brass wants to know sooner rather than later." Even if doing so meant breaking some rules and regs.
Finn frowned. "Basically we're covering the admiralty's ass so they don't lose face. Is that what I'm hearing?" He got up and crossed the room to pace back and forth.
Regan jumped in. "Hold up. Would we be having this conversation if she were male?" She kicked back in her seat, crossing her legs at the ankles. "I mean, all due respect, Sir, but you've been known to pull maneuvers out of your ass that aren't written down in any text book or how to kick down doors manuals." Her eyebrow arched, daring him to counter her statement.
Grant snorted. "Point taken, Tiedt. However, gender doesn't come into play here." He held up a hand when she opened her mouth to argue. "The numbers are what concern the admiralty. Bottom line, we need to determine if she's got the chops to be in command. Because if she doesn't, sooner or later, those injuries and reprimands will become deaths."
Regan's shoulders slumped and she glanced back to exchange a look with Finn. After a moment of silent communication, something they had down to a science. O'Kellen came back and took his seat again.
Regan straightened up and held Grant's gaze. "How far do you want us to take this?"
Marshall gave each a considering look. He had to give them leeway. He also had no doubt they'd push whatever limits he set for them to the very edge. They didn't operate any other way.
Again, part of why they were perfect for this assignment.
Folding his hands in front of him, Marshall gave them their directive. "As far as you need to. I want you to become Craig's newest problem pilots, filled with bad attitude and a penchant for breaking regs." The admiralty wanted results; they'd have to deal with whatever fallout came with the operation.
Finn slid a quick glance in Regan's direction then met Marshall's head-on. "That means we're going to be crossing lines, too." His unspoken implication came through.
An underlying attraction existed between Finn and Regan. But they maintained a hands-off policy and didn't mix personal and professional. Once they reached the Wellingstone, all that would change.
Grant nodded. "Like I said, whatever it takes."
He'd have their backs. The admiralty could bite the bullet and wallow in the bed they made.
Without hesitation, each replied. "I'm in."

Still working through some kinks on this one, but very happy with how it's coming together.

That's it for this week. Catch everyone on the flip.

ML Skye

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