Go to Prologue
Kacey walked back to the camp sight searching for Kate along the way. She took out her flashlight and searched in the shadows. She heard Kate before she found her.
"Come on you damn piece of shit work." She cursed. "Captain Jensen to Andromeda." Static was the only sound.
"WHAT IS IT COLONEL?" Kate snapped.
"Whoa. Take a step back there Captain. I just wanted to tell you that the communicators are not working in here."
"This I already know. How about you tell me something I don't know. Let me use your radio. I need to contact the ship to tell them we will not be back tonight."
"The radio is not working either. The ship knows, Captain. I was able to contact them earlier."
"HOW THE HELL DID YOU ACCOMPLISH THAT IF THE COMMUNICATORS AND YOUR RADIO ARE NOT WORKING?"
"I USED THE RADIO IN ONE OF THE STINGERS TO CALL THEM EARLIER." Kacey stated. loudly.
"BUT YOU DID NOT THINK THAT INFORMATION WAS IMPORTANT ENOUGHT TO TELL ME? Kate yelled
"JESUS CHRIST CAPTAIN, I HAVE BEEN LOOKING FOR YOU TO TELL YOU.." Kacey yelled right back. "IF YOU WANT TO CALL THE SHIP OR ANYA, COME WITH ME, I WILL SHOW YOU HOW TO WORK THE STINGER RADIOS."
"I KNOW HOW TO OPERATE A DAMN SHIP RADIO." Kate snapped.
"THEN BY ALL MEANS, CAPTAIN, PICK OUT A STINGER AND KNOCK YOURSELF OUT." Kacey stalked off in anger until she was out of sight and waited for Kate to yell again.
Kate climbed into the pilot's seat and searched for the radio. "Damn it, where is the radio in this thing." Giving up her seach she yelled. "COLONEL"
"Kacey walked slowly back to the stinger. "You bellowed Captain. Something you need?"
"GOD DAMN IT WHERE THE HELL IS THE RADIO IN THIS THING?" She snapped.
Kacey bit the inside of her cheek to keep from smiling. She climbed up onto the wing and took the head set. "Put this on and call Andromeda. Leave the radio on when you are done in case the ship tries to contact us. DO NOT TOUCH ANYTHING BUT THE HEAD SET. I would rather not spend the next three days resetting all the systems on the stinger. Just speak into that little nob right there and you will hear the ship in the head set. Just bellow if you need anything else." Kacey jumped down off the wing and went back to camp.
"Captain Jensen to Andromeda."
"Aye Katie. How are ye doing? Kacey told us you would not be back tonight."
"The pilots are too badly injured to move yet. Kacey had the men set up a perimeter, so we will be perfectly safe."
"That is good Katie. We are not able to see to much in that area. There is a lot of static and distortion. Is Kacey very angry with you?"
"Angry is not the word I would use Liam. What she is, is so much more than angry. Would you transfer me to Anya?"
"Of course lass, hold on." Kate heard several clicks in the earphones.
"Commander Jensen" Anya's voice came through.
"Kate are you all right? Natalia told me you would not be back tonight."
"We are all fine. I am glad Natalia told you. Communications are spotty at best or not working at all. I am using the radio in one of the stingers. Are the girls still up?"
"They fell asleep a few minutes ago. How are you and Kacey doing?"
"Butting heads every couple minutes, but we have not resorted to duking it out yet. Then she took us on a five kilometer run through the area to get to the pilots before dark."
"Were you able to keep up with her?"
"I did after she pissed me off." Anya laughed. "It is not funny Anya. We can not seem to be able to get through a few minutes with out trying to tear each other's heads off."
"Yet you rushed through that field when you saw her go down earlier to make sure she was all right."
"She is my sister. I love her dearly, there are just times when I really do not like her. I imagine she feels the same about me. I have to admit she certainly knows what she is doing. I am really impressed with her cool headed thinking. Cool headed as long as it is not me she is dealing with."
" She loves you Kate. Why do you think she deliberately pissed you off on that run. Maybe because she wanted you to keep up with her. You say you were impressed with her actions maybe you should try to tell her that." Anya suggested.
"I don't know if we will be able to get past this, Anya. We can not go two minutes with out snapping."
"I have confidence in you Kate, in both of you. You two will get past this. You are blood. No matter how angry we get with blood we still love them and will do anything for them. There is always Patricia if you need help."
"Good lord not that." Kate laughed, I had better get some dinner and rest. God only knows what we will have to do tomorrow. Kacey will probably have us pull these damn things out by hand." Kate stated. "I love you Anya."
"I love you my Kate. I will give you a nice massage when you get back. The bed will be so empty without you in my arms tonight." Kate felt her eyes fill and she could not reply. "Kate?"
Kate cleared her throat. "Still here. Just thinking how much I will miss you tonight. Especially having your arms around me telling me that everything will be all right. That things will get better."
"Everything will be all right Kate and they will get better. I believe it, you do the same. Have a good night, my love." The radio went silent. Kate sat there for a long time listening to the silence. Finally she removed the headset and climbed out of the ship careful not to touch anything. She walked around for some time as the shadows deepened. She moved out of the far reaches of the lights and stared at the stars above her head. She fingered the plain band on her left hand. The only jewelry she wore when on duty. The ring a symbol of the love and commitment she has with the woman who is her rock. She lost track of the time she stood there or even when the tears started to fall.
Kacey watched her from the shadows to make sure she was all right. Part of her wanted to talk to Kate to make things right between them. But she did not want to get into another shouting match with her either. She watched Kate wipe her eyes. It took a lot to make Kate cry. Whether the tears were because of their disagreements or because she missed Anya, Kacey didn't know. She was not sure if she wanted to find out. She returned to the campsite. Now that all the crises were past them, she felt her energy and strength failing. She had left the men setting up the watch schedule. When she returned she stated "put me down for the three hundred to six hundred watch."
"Colonel with all due respect, There are enough of us to cover sentry duty."
"No you men will need your rest and strength to carry out the injured men. Put me down Major." She ordered then went into the tent to get some sleep. "One more thing Major. Keep an eye on the Captain. She is just outside the lights."
"Will do Colonel." The Major stated.
To be continued...
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