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The seats around the conference table were full except for Kacey's chair. They waited for her to begin the meeting. Kacey walked into the room and took her seat next to Kate's.
"Sorry I am late. I was getting an update from my pilots still mapping the planet."
"Do they have anything to report?" Kate asked.
"They have only seen grass lands and grass eating animals. They report seeing several different species. We may have just landed on the wrong side of the planet. They also report seeing many bodies of water, plus a small river."
"What are the chances those animals we ran into would migrate to the other side?" Kate asked.
"We have no way of knowing that, Kate."
"All right people, comments or suggestions."
"We know the side we landed on is too dangerous for Andromeda to land, but what about the other side? The grassy side." Lieutenant Minor asked.
"Will we hold orbit while the Stingers map the area then give up on this planet?" Kacey added.
"There were five people injured down there today. Two of which are still in Sick Bay."
"I know that Kate." Kacey said. "So far the Stingers report no dangerous animals where they are mapping. We, or rather I picked the wrong side to land on. I really do not think we should give up and leave this planet."
"How would be able to protect the residents? Will the shock sticks keep all the animals out? The ones that attacked us, became impervious to phasic fire and we had to resort to killing them. We are not on this journey to destroy life."
"Katie, what if we just send down a few scientists to collect samples without landing. They can go down with an armed guard to protect them for a couple hours."
"We can also have the Stingers and shuttles do guard duty as well as having extra Marines on the ground."
"If all the pilots are in the air, how many will be left on the ground?" Kate asked.
"If we utilize your pilots in the shuttles, forty plus Rhea's security, we should be able to send groups out with six to eight guards for each group."
"Okay. Kacey have your pilots track the animals while they map the planet. We will meet back here in three days to decide if we land or not." Kate told them. "Until then it is business as usual. dismissed." The officers filed out. "Kacey wait a minute."
Kacey sat back down. Kate waited until the door closed before she sat down next to Kacey.
"How are you doing?"
"I am okay, Kate. Thank you for sending Natalia down. I know there is a dark memory that you told the doctor to leave buried and I am okay with that. I have way more good in my life right now to worry about one lost memory."
"What if you freeze again?" Kate asked.
"I do not think that will happen again."
"How the hell can you be so sure?"
"I am prepared now. Before I was not. The combination of the gun fire and the flashes surprised me. I promise that will not happen again. If we land, I will not wander off."
"So if I decide to do a recon mission, you will remain here?"
"Hell no. Kate, I have to go back down there to guard your back. It is not that I don't trust your security or my Marines to watch your back, but they are not related to you. I am. Sisters take care of each other."
"There is no one I trust more or would want to watch my back, little sister."
"Then any recon missions we do, we do together."
"You are getting very slick, Kacey."
"I learned from the best two people, you and mom. Now I have to go talk to the doctor about my people."
"Speaking of doctors?"
"Got to run Kate. Talk to you later." Kacey said and ran from the room.
"KACEY." Kate yelled at the retreating back. All she heard was laughter.
To be continued...
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