Episode Three: New Beginnings, Old Wounds
The sleek goose-like hull of the 'Cerulean One' glided gracefully past the large rocky world that briefly eclipsed the shining blue-green marble ahead of them.
"Captain, the Class Eleven world is directly ahead sir."
"Bring it on screen." and Captain Morave turned to President Hamilton. "Madam President, I would like to let you be the first to set eyes on our new home."
With that the screen lit up, with the orb in front of us. Its deep blue oceans that traversed the northern hemisphere and the dark green forests that blanketed its south, showcasing the beauty of untamed nature.
"Thank you, Captain, so much. Everyone, welcome to New Cerulean. Welcome home."
"Madam President...Jackie...I stronly feel that we should organize here, settle, regroup. We've lost so much and you want to send the "Morning Song" with a quarter billion people off into the void already."
I watched Henry Westings calmly as I sipped from my glass of Pinot Grigio. "Henry, we don't know if those attackers...those 'dread lords'...are able to follow us here. I am not going to risk what is left our civilization by forcing them to stay in one spot. We've found this part of the galaxy is teeming with habitable worlds, we should take advantage of that. Increase our numbers, build up our strength."
The Secretary seemed visibly disturbed.
"Is something wrong Mr. Secretary?"
"Well, Madam President, what if these new colonies decide to rebel like they did before? What then?"
"They rebelled Mr. Secretary because we stopped caring as a people. If we stop caring, then all is lost anyway. Besides, the 'Morning Song' has already departed. It should reach the Dilworth system within two weeks. They found a Class 19 world there, Henry, do you know what that means? Practically paradise on earth. How can I deny people that when it's in our very backyard?" I poured some more wine into my glass, noticed my bottle was getting rather low. "Henry, trust me on this alright? It's the best course of action."
"Very well, Madam President. I did have one more question."
Taking a moment, he almost looked afraid to ask. I had a pretty good idea what he was going to ask too.
"Have you given any thought to the position of Vice President? If anything were to happen to you ma'am...well it's too awful to think about."
"In good time, Mr. Secretary." and in my head....yes, I have, and it won't be you, you sly bastard.
He nodded profusely. "Of course, of course. Well thank you for your time. I will be heading back to the 'Victorious' for now."
"This is a very wonderful dinner that your chef has prepared Captain Morave." as I cut into the lemon-seared chicken, paired with a glass of White Zinfadel.
"Thank you, Madam President. And feel free to call me Cal." and Cal Morave smiled at me.
"Cal it is then. So, Cal, I hear that you are departing tomorrow from orbit? Long range reconnaissance if I read correctly?"
"Yes, ma'am. The Secretary has ordered us to do anomaly sweeps and to scout out star systems."
"I see." I put my glass down and looked Cal in the eyes. "What do you think of the Secretary, Captain? Its alright, this will go no further."
"Well...ma'am...I've never quite been able to put together his military career with his personality. He has all these medals and accolades and yet I wouldn't trust him to lead someone down a straight corridor. No offense ma'am.'
I let out a hearty laugh. "None taken, Cal, none at all. I couldn't agree more. I'm worried that he's sending the 'Cerulean One' out to keep our strongest asset away from me, out of my control. But, that being said, I think the task he's appointed is very important. So, if its alright Captain, I would like to appoint my very own Personal Envoy to this ship, a diplomatic detail as it were, so that this ship has direct contact with me, and my full backing in all matters it may encounter. Who knows, we may even meet some new species out there, and the last thing I'd want is Henry Westings ordering you to open fire on them."
"That sounds great, Madam President."
"Well Captain...Cal...let's enjoy this wonderful meal. Why don't you tell me a little more about yourself?"
"Thank you so much for the meal, Captain." and I reached for the door, then it I remembered something. "Oh Cal, one more thing."
"Yes, Madam President?"
"You wouldn't happen to have any suggestions for Vice President would you?"
Cal smiled. "As a matter of fact, I would."
"Fellow citizens, may I present to you, your new Vice President, a man know for his vision and integrity, that has been spent for the last ten years as the Director of Sciences on Gaia, and before that as the commander of the Union Star Cruiser 'Liberty'....Tristan Larrin." and I turned toward the man that strode up toward me, shaking his hand, before turning over the podium to him.
"Thank you so much, Madam President. I am truly honored to accept this office."
"Ladies and Gentlemen of the Cerulean Union...your new Vice President." and the room applauded...but Secretary Henry Westings was not one of them.