Series: Season 1
Rating: T (on ff.net)
Pairing/Focus: Lee, Kara, Adama, others
Spoilers/Disclaimers:Season 1/ I own nothing related to Battlestar Galactica. The
characters and the universe of the Battlestar Galactica do not belong
to me. I make no profit from this story.
"On behalf of Galactica, I'd like to welcome you aboard, Apollo. It's an honour to have you with us."
Those were exactly the words Captain Lee "Apollo" Adama never wanted to here in his live. He had been ordered to participate in the decommissioning ceremony of the Battlestar Galactica, one, if not the oldest battlestar left in the colonial fleet. And the exact same battlestar which had been commanded by his father for years. His father who he had no contact with for over two years. And he had no plans to change that. Hadn't the order to participate come from Admiral Ngala himself, Apollo would have tried to get out of this one. But as things stood he had no other chance than to follow his orders.
While Apollo landed on the flight deck his thoughts turned away from his father to someone else stationed on this ship. Kara Thrace – his oldest friend and fiancée of his dead brother. Since she accepted the position on the Galactica he hadn't spoken to her either. He had been angry at first. He had felt betrayed by her. How could she work for the man who was responsible for her fiancées death? Later he had understood her reasons but then it was too late. Too many things had changed and he had simply been too much of a coward to call her up and explain everything to her. Well, he was going to change that. He had a few hours to spent on the Galactica before the ceremony began. He would find Kara and explain it to her. Everything. She would give him a beating, he was sure of that. But, well, he probably deserved that much.
After leaving his viper he was approached by a crewman who introduced himself as Chief Tyrol. Lee introduced himself but was still so deep in thoughts over how and what to tell Kara that he didn't notice the Chief following him. When he realised the Chief was still talking to him, he tried to get Kara out of his head for some time and listen to what the man was telling him.
"... meet you Sir. I'm sure you've heard this before, but I'm a great admirer of your father. The service is going to miss him when he retires."
"Well, I'm sure someone will." Lee answered coldly. This is just what he needed. Another fan of the great Commander William "Husker" Adama. This day just got worse every second.
"Is your auto-landing system down? I was hands-on for the whole approach." He tried to change the subject. It didn't work as planned though.
"It's all hands-on here Captain. There are no auto-landings on the Galactica. Commander Adamas orders." Tyrol replied hostile.
He obviously felt offended by Lees words. Well, he couldn't change that. In fact, he didn't care.
"Is that right?" was all he said. Then he turned away from the chief and left the hangar bay leaving a stunned Tyrol behind.
On his way to the visitors quarters he asked a passing pilot where he might find Lt. Thrace.
"The brig, Sir." The pilot answered, trying to hide a grin. Of course, Lee thought, were else would she be. Some things just never change.
After the pilots briefing for the ceremony was over Lee went directly to the brig to see Kara. When he approached her cell he had to suppress a smile. He had missed her. She was doing push-up's so she didn't notice him coming near her. He watched her for a few seconds.
"This seems familiar." He said not being able to hide the smile on his face any longer.
Surprised Lt. Kara "Starbuck" Thrace looked up at her unsuspected visitor. Then she got up, put her hands to her waist and replied jokingly:
"Captain Adama, Sir. Sorry I wasn't there to greet you with the rest of the squadron. Did they kiss your ass to your satisfaction?" While talking Kara walked over to the bars and were standing directly in front of Lee now, looking challengingly at him. But Lee had decided long ago that it was best to just ignore comments like that from her.
"So, did you miss me?" he asked instead giving her a small smile.
She slightly shook her head. Then she looked back up at him. "Every second." She replied, grinning at him.
Gods, he really had missed her. He looked around the brig for a second.
"So, what's the charge this time?"
Giving him one of her trade mark grins Kara replied: "Hmm, striking a superior asshole."
Lee tried not to laugh out loud. "Ahh, I bet you've been waiting all day to say that one."
She nods slightly then replied laughing: "Most of the afternoon."
They just stood there for some time looking at each other. Then Kara smiled, grabbing one of the bars with her hand, closing in on Lee a bit more and asked: "So, how long has it been?"
*Here it goes* Lee thought. His chance to tell her why he hadn't called her for so long. "Two years." He hesitated, searching for the right words.
But Kara was quicker then he. "Two years? We must be getting old. Seems like the funeral was just a couple of month ago."
"Yeah." He stiffened. Frak, that's not something he wanted to think of right now. And he still had no idea how to tell her. *How difficult can it be, Lee Adama? Just get it out.* he thought, starting to get angry at himself.
"Your old man's doing fine. We don't talk about it much. Maybe two, three times a year. He still struggles with it though ..."
Great, he should have known she wouldn't let go of it. "I haven't seen him ..." he quickly replied. He better stop this conversation before it went out of hands. They stared at each other for some more time.
"Why not?" Kara asked. When Lee just looked at her without saying anything she let out a small laugh. He could see she was angry.
"Kara, don't even start."
"How long are you gonna do this?" she snapped at him.
"I'm not doing anything."
"He lost his son, Lee..." Kara said sadly.
"And who's responsible for that?" he snapped back at her. He saw her taking a step back. Frak, this is so not what he wanted. He took a deep breath and tried to get his emotions back under control.
"Same old Lee ... you haven't changed either." Kara went on.
"Zak was my brother."
That gave him a cold look from Kara. "What was he to me? Nothing?" she sounded really pissed now.
"That's not what I meant. And you know it ..." he said.
"You know what? You should go! I'm getting the urge to hit another superior asshole." She looked angry at him.
Well, he was just as angry now. He tried to force a smile, then turned around and left. He would just tell her some other time. Or never. Whatever, he didn't care anyway. He angrily walked away.
An hour later Lee stepped into the conference room where some photos for the press were supposed to be shot. He was already awaited.
"Oh, here he is." A brown haired man, probably in his mid thirties, acknowledged his presence.
"If you'd just like to, uhh ... do a little space" he waved at some reporters standing in the middle of the room to let Lee pass between them.
"Captain, thank you for joining us." The man offered his hand to introduce himself. "Hi, Aaron Doral." Then he went straight back to business.
"If you'd just like to stand up there, we'll get a few shots of you and the Commander." He pointed towards the podium in the back of the room.
Lee walked towards the designated area when he suddenly became aware of his father standing in the shadows behind the podium.
"Captain" Commander Adama said as he came forward, nodding shortly at his son before standing next to him. Lee suddenly felt nervous being so close to his father again. He just wanted to get this over with as quickly as possible.
"Great" Aaron Doral cut into his thoughts. "Um, Gentlemen, could you maybe stand a bit closer?" he asked, slightly confused at the attitude both Adamas showed towards each other.
Lee and his father hesitantly moved closer.
"Fantastic. Uhm, Commander, could you put your arm around your son?" Doral went on.
Adama did as he was asked. He just hesitated slightly before actually putting his arm on his sons shoulder. They had been apart for so long. He wasn't used to be so close to his son. He noticed how Lee tensed up at the unfamiliar close contact with his father.
"Great, perfect" Doral said.
While the reporters took their pictures Lee tried to force a smile on his face. When all the necessary pictures were taken, Adama quickly left the podium. As the reporters were starting to leave the room, guided by Doral, Lee watched his father expectantly for a moment. When Adama didn't seem to take any further notice of him he decided it would be best to just follow the reporters out. But before he could step over the threshold his father called out to him.
"You want some, uh, coffee?" He was already pouring some in a cup in front of him.
"No Sir, thank you, Sir." Lee replied coldly and continued to step out of the room.
"Why don't you sit down?" Adama tried again. At that Lee turned around and looked surprised at his father.
"Congratulations on making Captain. Sorry I wasn't there." Adama went on after a few seconds.
"Thank you, Sir." Lee replied, still coldly. There was some uncomfortable silence as father and son thought of what to say next.
"How's your mother?" Adama broke the silence first.
"Getting married." Lee noticed how his father seemed to freeze at this. *Good* he thought. *At least he feels bad about something.*
"Good for her." Adama quietly said. "We spoke about a year ago. Had a real heart to heart, it was good." He continued.
"I'm glad to here that, Sir. Will that be all?" Lee had had enough. He just wanted to get out.
"Why don't you talk to me, Lee?" his father asked frustrated.
Lee let out a small hard laugh. "Wha ... What do you want to talk about?" he replied angry, taking a deep breath. He hated to loose control in front of his father.
"Anything. You've been here for an hour." Adama bit his lip. He hadn't meant to sound accusatory towards his son. He didn't want to push him away again.
"Well, I don't have anything to say. My orders said report here and participate in the ceremony, so I'm here. And I'm going to
participate in the ceremony. It wasn't ...." He let out a deep breath. "... wasn't anything in my orders about having any heart-to- heart-chats with the old man." Lee continued coldly.
Sadly Adama looked at his son. He had to make this right somehow. "Accidents happen ... in the service." He quietly said.
"Dad listen, I ..." Lee started but was interrupted by his father. "In all the things that you talked to me about, the last time we were together ..."
"I really don't want to do this." Lee cut in.
"... at the funeral" Adama continued as if he hadn't heard his son's words. "... they still ring in my ears after two years."
"Good" Lee yelled. "Good, cause, cause you know what? They were meant to."
Adama felt like he was slapped to the face. "Zak had a choice. You both did."
Lee snorted. "A man isn't a man until he wears the wings of a viper pilot! Does that sound at all familiar to you?" he shouted at his father.
"It's not fair son ..."
"No, it's not fair." Lee cut in. "Because one of us wasn't cut out to wear the uniform."
"He earned his wings. Just like we all did." Adama tried to argue with his son.
But Lee was too furious now to even listen what his father was saying.
"One of us wasn't cut out to be a pilot. One of us wouldn't have even made it into flight school if his old man ... his Daddy ... hadn't pulled the strings!!!" he kept shouting in his fathers face.
"That's an exaggeration. I did nothing for him that I wouldn't have done for anyone else." Adama tried to explain. Why wouldn't Lee understand? It hadn't been his fault.
But his fathers words only made Lee more angry. "You're not even listening to me. Why, why can't you get this through your head??? ZAK DID NOT BELONG IN THAT PLANE. He shouldn't have been there. He, he was only doing it for you. Face it. You killed him."
That last part was said in such a harsh ice-cold tone it made Adama shudder. He bit his lip again and just stared at the wall. Without looking at his son again he quietly said: "That'll be all, Captain."
Lee felt the tears began to well up in his eyes. He had to choke. He tried to regain his composure, then walked out of the room, leaving his father behind in pain.
"Well this went just great" Lee thought after he stepped out into the corridor. Just what he had not wanted. Talking to his father. Fighting. First with Kara, then with his Dad. He shouldn't have come here. *Frakking orders* he thought angry. Why couldn't his father get it? Why ...
„Daddy" he heard a child's voice from behind.
*No way* he thought. But when he turned around he saw his one year old daughter Nia running towards him. Before he could even begin to understand what his daughter was doing here, on his fathers battlestar, the last place he ever would have expected her to be, she had flung herself into his arms.
"Hey pumpkin" he said to her, slightly confused, giving her a welcome kiss on her forehead.
"Miss me?" his daughter asked, her blue eyes sparkling with joy at seeing her father.
He let out a small laugh. "Every second."
Then he turned to his wife Alicia, who came walking towards him right behind their daughter. "What are you doing here?" he asked her utterly confused.
"We thought you could use some company today" she answered smiling. "Are you okay?" she continued quietly. Alicia had noticed the tears still glistening in his eyes.
He swallowed. "I am now" he said, smiling at her before giving her a long kiss.
His daughter giggled in his arms. This day might not end so bad as he had expected.
William Adama was still shocked by his sons outburst. After all this time ... He had hoped Lee would have changed his opinion over what had happened. He thought Lee would eventually understand that all William ever wanted was the best for his sons. Still deep in thought he left the conference room and stepped out into the corridor. But when he turned around the corner he stopped shell-shocked – surprised to see his son tightly embracing a dark haired woman and having a child in his arms. They seemed to be close. He just stood there, stunned. While watching his son and the woman beside him he thought that she looked kind of familiar. He tried to remember when or where he had seen her before. Then it came back to him. Zak's funeral. She had been there with Lee, standing always by his side, following him outside after his outburst towards his father ... No, he didn't want to think about that again. But if Lee had known her for that long than the child in his arms might be ...
"There you are, Bill. It's time. The Secretary is already waiting. Apparently she still has some more questions." Col. Saul Tigh interrupted Adamas thoughts.
"Yes, thank you, Saul. I'm on my way." William answered his friend and XO.
"You're ok?" Saul asked him.
"Yeah" William sighed. "I just want this day to be over quickly." He looked in his sons direction a last time before walking away to meet again with Laura Roslin, Secretary of Education.
Lee, Alicia and Nia had made their way to the mess hall to spent the little time they had left together.
"I'm sorry we don't have that much time left. If I had known you were here ..." Lee said but was interrupted by his wife.
"Then you wouldn't have argued so much with you Dad?" She said giving him a warm smile.
"How do you know?"
"Everyone in a 100 meter radius around that conference room probably knows." Alicia explained dryly.
"Oh ... "Lee was embarrassed that other people might have heard the exchange with his father. He watched his daughter for some time playing with her doll she took everywhere with her. "So, how's it going at home?" he asked.
"Great. Your mother is busy planning the wedding. Her sister is making her go stir crazy. She should have become a wedding planer." Alicia laughed.
"I can imagine. Aunt Beth always loved planning thinks." Lee replied laughingly. "And how are you doing?" he asked more earnestly.
"I'm fine, Lee. Stop worrying. The new meds are really helping. I almost feel like a new person." She assured him.
"That's good." Lee was glad the new medications were working for his wife. The last ones she had taken had made her sleepy and almost apathetic all the time. He had been worried she might get another relapse.
"Did you know we came here on the same shuttle as the Secretary of Education? You're mother arranged that for us."
"Really, I'm impressed." Lee smiled at her.
"Yeah, but I think she just wanted me out of the house for some time. Mark finally returned from his last business trip. Caroline abandoned your Aunt from the house for a week. I think they both need some time alone." Alicia explained. She looked thoughtful for a moment.
"Maybe we should get our own apartment now. These new pills really are helping. I feel great. I'm sure I could handle living on my own now." She went on excited.
Lee looked sceptic. He knew Alicia hated to be dependent on his mother or any other person for that matter. He felt the same way. But with the medication and treatment being so expensive he couldn't afford taking a job planetside now to live with his family. And he felt better knowing there was someone watching over his wife and daughter he could trust.
"I don't know, Ali, lets wait a bit with that."
"But Lee ..."
"Captain Adama please report to Hangar Bay. Captain Adama please report to Hangar Bay." Was heard over the PA speaker.
Lee looked up then sighed heavily. "I'm sorry. I have to go. We talk about this when I get back to Caprica."
"Alright." Alicia looked disappointed.
"I love you." He gave her a long kiss.
"I love you too." Despite her feelings she smiled warmly at him.
"And you I love the most." He laughed at his daughter while taking her in his arms, giving her a warm hug.
Then he said goodbye to his family and left the mess hall. At the hatch he looked back at them, watching for a few seconds how Aliciaplayed lovingly with Nia and her beloved doll. He sighed. He hoped she was right and the medication would finally help. Then he turned around and stepped through the hatch.
After the ceremony began, there was an air display of manoeuvres held by Galacticas vipers and raptors, lead by Apollo. They were watched by the people participating in the ceremony. Lee sat in his viper when his father held his speech that was transmitted through the whole ship and also to the vipers and raptors surrounding the Galactica at the moment.
"The Cylon War is long over." Adama began. "Yet we must not forget the reasons why so many sacrificed so much in the cause of freedom. The cost of wearing the uniform can be high. But ..."
Lee heard his father stop for a moment. *Great* he thought bitter. *Another one of Dads high appraisals to the Colonial Fleet* But then he was surprised as his father continued to speak.
"...sometimes it's too high. You know when we fought the Cylons we did it to save ourselves from extinction. But we never answered the question: Why? Why are we as a people worth saving? We still commit murder because of greed, spite, jealousy and we still visit all of our sins upon our children."
As Adama continued Lee wondered if their fight from before had inspired his father to this speech. Did he finally felt some responsibility for what happened to Zak?
"You cannot play god then wash your hands of the things that you've created. Sooner or later the day comes when you can't hide from the things that you've done anymore."
Adamas words left Lee deep in thought for a while. He thought again about their fight earlier, his heated discussion with Kara, his family. He knew he had made mistakes in life too. But at least he was taking full responsibility for them. Why couldn't his father do the same?
Lee had been ordered to escort the Secretary's shuttle back to Caprica. It killed him to be so near his wife and daughter and not being able to spend some time with them. As soon as they had reached Caprica he would have to return to Galactica and change this old piece of junk – of course they had to make him fly his fathers old Viper Mark II – against his new Viper Mark VII. He would be glad to finally fly in his own Viper again. He didn't really trust this old bird. Even though Galacticas Chief had assured him that she was as good as new he still had this feeling she would fall apart around him every second.
Inside the shuttle the passengers were greeted by their Pilot.
"Ladies and Gentleman, we are now on route back to Caprica. If you'll look out the starboard window, you might be able to see one of Galacticas old Mark II Vipers which will be escorting us home."
Alicia had to smile at these words. Lee had told her about his feelings regarding flying his fathers old Viper. Everyone had expected him to feel proud when in reality he would have preferred to rip that ship apart. She looked down at her daughter who was too busy playing with her doll to notice anything around her.
"Look Honey, that's your Daddy flying in this Viper out there."
Immediately Nia's eyes turned out the window. "Daddy?" she called out.
"Yes, that's your Daddy."
Nia had put a hand on the window and was watching her father fly next to the shuttle. Her doll was all forgotten. When it came to her father there was nothing more important.
Adama sat in his office going over some reports. Finally the ceremony was over. He hated the idea of retirement but he certainly wouldn't miss all this military pomp. He was truly tired and glad that this day finally lay behind him. His thoughts went back to Lee. Had this child really been his? If he were a grandfather surely someone would have told him. He reflected on his conversation with Lee today and suddenly he didn't feel so sure about that anymore. His thoughts were interrupted by his phone ringing.
"CIC to Commanding Officer."
"Go ahead." He replied.
"I'm sorry to disturb you, Sir, but we have a priority 1 alert message from Fleet Headquarters. It ... was transmitted in the clear." Lt. Gaeta reported to him.
"In the clear?" What does it say?" He noticed Gaeta slightly hesitated before he read the message to his Commander.
"Attention all Colonial Units, Cylon attack underway. This is no drill."
There was a short silence on the phone as Adama tried to comprehend what he just heard. He closed his eyes for a second. He had known they would come back some day. He just wished he had been wrong.
"I'll be right there."
In CIC Adama met with Col. Tigh who looked like he just fell out of his rack.
"What have we got? Shipping accidents?" Tigh asked. *There are always problems when civilians are involved,* he thought to himself.
Adama handed him a paper. While he was busy reading the document Lt. Gaeta approached them.
"Condition 1 is set. All decks report ready for action, Sir." He reported.
"Very well." Adama answered quietly.
Tigh couldn't believe what was happening here. "This is a joke!" he called out. "The Fleet's playing a joke on you, a retirement prank, come on."
"I don't think so." Adama answered calmly.
Tigh looked at him in disbelief as Adama picked up a microphone to announce the current situation to the crew.
"This is the Commander." Adama began. "Moments ago this ship received word of a Cylon attack against our home world which is underway. We do not know the size or the disposition or the strength of the enemy forces. But all indications point to a massive assault against Colonial defences. Admiral Ngala has taken personal command of the fleet aboard the Battlestar Atlantia following complete destruction of Picon Fleet Headquarters in the first wave of the attacks. How, why, doesn't really matter now. What does matter is that of this moment, we are at war!"
He paused shortly.
"You've trained for this. You're ready for this. Stand to your duties. Trust your fellow ship mates. And we'll all get through this. Further updates as we get them. Thank you." Adama finished, putting the microphone down.
Everyone in CIC stood still for a moment, looking at their commander before they all went back to work.
In her cell Kara listened to Adamas words. She was shocked. How could this have happened? How could the Cylons just show up and destroy headquarters. And Caprica was under attack. *Lee is on his way to Caprica* she thought terrified. Then she called for the guard.
"Let me out" she demanded.
"I'm afraid I can't do this, Lt. I have my orders."
"There is frakking war going on. You really think the Commander wants his best pilot to sit in a cell?" she yelled at him.
"I'm sorry, Lt. I can't let you out." With that he turned around and left her just standing there.
She yelled at him to come back. When she couldn't see him anymore she turned quiet and frustrated looked around herself. "This is just frakking great." She hissed. "We're at war and I'm stucked in this frakking cell." She let out a frustrated sigh. "I always screw up at the worst possible times."
5 Minutes later the guard returned and opened her cell. "You are ordered to report to CIC ASAP."
Kara got out immediately. When she passed by the guard she gave him an angry look. He didn't dare to meet her eyes. Then she quickly made her way to CIC.
When Starbuck arrived at CIC the first person she saw was Col. Tigh. She couldn't resist the notion to taunt him despite the circumstances. She touched her cheek at the same area where she had hit the Colonel only hours ago. He had a visible bruise on his cheek. She smiled at him mischievously. Then she went straight to Commander Adama and saluted to him.
"Commander. Ready for duty, Sir."
"Good." Adama replied.
"Where the hell did the Cylons come from?" Starbuck asked angrily. She needed to know what was going on here.
"All we know for sure is they achieved complete surprise and we're taking heavy losses. We lost 30 Battlestars in the opening attack."
Kara had so swallow the lump that was building up in her throat. "It's a quarter of the fleet." She said shocked.
Adama looked at her seriously. "I need pilots and I need fighters."
"Pilots you got. There's 20 of us climbing the walls down in the ready room. But fighters ..." She shook her head slightly, looking on the floor.
"I think I seem to remember an entire squadron of fighters down on the starboard Hangar Deck yesterday."
Starbuck looked surprised at Adama, then she smiled. "Yes, Sir." She saluted, then quickly left CIC.
Alicia sat shocked, holding her daughter tightly in her arms, as she listened to the Pilots words.
"Once again, we are processing the information that we have been given and I ... urge you all ... to try to stay calm. As we get more information, I will pass it along to you. We appreciate your patience. Thank you."
With tears in her eyes Alicia looked outside the window searching for her husband. He was nowhere to be seen.
"Mommy?" her daughter asked her scared when she saw her mother crying.
"It's okay honey. It's okay. Just keep playing with your doll, yes?" She pressed her daughter more tightly to her for a second before releasing her so she could play with her doll.
In his Viper Apollo tried to get a hold of the situation. The Cylons had attacked the Colonies. Caprica was under attack so for the moment they had nowhere to go. They were already too far away to return to the Galactica. He had to protect that shuttle, his wife and daughter, and all he had was a 20 year old viper which could break apart any second.
"Any luck, Captain?" he heard the shuttles pilot over the comm.
He had tried to get more information over military channels. "No.
Just picking up a lot of confusing chatter." He sighed. This was
getting them nowhere.
"Well, to be honest with you, I'm kinda glad you're sticking around. Makes us all feel better just seeing you out there."
Apollo let out a frustrated sigh. "Well, don't get too comfortable. This old junker I'm in was meant for show, not combat. If we run into a problem, well, I'll do what I can to protect you. But the first sign of trouble you pull on the speed and you run." He ordered the pilot. There really wasn't much he could do to defend them.
"Don't worry about that. I've got my hands on the throttle, it hasn't left since I got that first message. Colonial Heavy 798 out."
But Apollo did worry. Of course he was glad that Alicia and Nia weren't on Caprica at this time. They would probably be dead by now. The pure thought sent cold shivers through his body. But they were not really safe on that shuttle either. If the Cylons were going to attack he couldn't do much to protect them. He'd rather preferred to be on the Atlantia right now where he could actually help. He would get in his Mark VII and kick some Cylon ass. All he was able to do here was waiting for the Cylons to kill them all.
Some time later Alicia clasped her daughter tightly to her again. She could hardly follow what that woman in front of them was saying to them. While the people around her were starting to scream and cry out for their loved ones she was unable to move or just think of any reasonable thing to calm down her daughter who sat crying in her arms, scared at all the commotion around them.
The woman, Laura Roslin, Secretary of Education, tried to calm down everyone. "Please, stop ... Please. I'm trying to reach the government right now and get more information. In the meantime, we should all be prepared for an extended stay aboard this ship. ... Okay, so, uhh, you, please. And you." She showed at some people.
"Uhm, take an inventory of the emergency supplies and rations ..." She was interrupted by a brown haired man who questioned whether she was in charge at all.
This was all too much for Alicia. She couldn't stay here on that shuttle. She had to get back to Caprica. She tried to call out that they had to return home immediately but she just couldn't find the words. She was scared to death. She held on to her daughter more tightly and let the tears run down she had been trying to keep in order to comfort her daughter. But she just couldn't be strong anymore.
As if the Cylons had read his thoughts two Raiders showed up on Apollos Dradis. He quickly informed the shuttle's pilot of the new situation then sped up to meet the Cylons before they could reach the shuttle. But it was too late. They had already sent a missile in the shuttles direction. He managed to shoot down the Cylon Raiders fairly quickly then he manoeuvred his Viper in front of the missile, hoping it would go after him instead the shuttle. His plan seemed to work. He led the missile away from the shuttle, then quickly turned around his viper and fired with everything he had at the missile which was now directly in front of him. The missile got destroyed but the detonation hit Apollo's Viper with full impact. His ship shook wildly around before it lost all power. *Frak* Lee thought.
"Krypter, krypter, krypter ..." he called over the comm. "This is Apollo to Colonial Heavy 798. I'm declaring an emergency. Flight systems are offline. Need assistance." He let out a frustrated sigh. He sat dead in space.
It only took the shuttle crew a few minutes to get Apollo on board. After he left the Viper he was approached by the same man he had met at the photo shooting earlier that day. Doral, he thought the man's name was.
"Captain, are you alright?"
"I'm fine." He answered then went passed the man. He had seen something behind his viper that looked interesting. He ignored Doral who kept following and talking to him.
"What are these things?"
Apollo finally took notice of the man beside him. "Electric pulse generators from the Galactica." He said, studying the generators in front of him.
"Really, that, that's interesting." Doral didn't really cared about these things right now, he had other things on his mind. "Captain, I can't tell you how glad I am to see you."
Surprised Apollo looked up. "Oh? Why is that?"
Relieved to finally have the Captains attention Doral went on. "Well, personally I'd feel a lot better if someone qualified were in charge around here."
"Is something wrong with your pilot?" Apollo asked.
"No, it ... it's just that he's not the one giving orders."
Apollo glanced one last look at the generators then walked away to see what was going on on the shuttle. Doral followed him quickly.
"This is ... it's bad situation, isn't it, Sir?" he asked.
"Yes, it is." Apollo answered while he kept quickly leaving the Cargo Bay. This man was starting to get on his nerves.
As Lee entered the passenger area he looked out for Alicia and Nia. He saw them sitting in the middle of the room. Alicia held tightly on to their daughter and both were crying. He quickly walked over to them.
"Ali ..." he called out before embracing them both tightly. When he let loose again he saw his wife looking up at him with a relived expression on her face.
She grasped his hand tight. "Lee, thank the gods. I couldn't see your viper out there anymore. What are you doing here?" She sniffed, the tears were still rolling down her cheeks.
"Long story, but I'm okay." He looked worried at his wife. "Ali, you have to calm down." He stopped, searching for the right words. Before he went on he took his daughter in his arms and gently began stroking her back. That usually calmed her down. She immediately slung her little arms around his neck and buried her face in his shoulder. He forced himself to turn his attention back to his wife.
"Do you have enough medication with you?" he asked his wife.
"Yes." She said in a tiny voice.
"Good, when are you supposed to take the next pill?" He swallowed once.
"I don't know. What time is it?"
Quickly he checked his watch. "Half past nine."
"Oh Gods, I should have taken one over two hours ago."
Lee let out a small breath. "Ok, take one now. Do you need some water?"
"No. Lee, I'm sorry." She looked at him afraid.
"It's ok, don't worry. Just take your pill." Lee looked up at Doral who was waiting impatiently for him before turning back to his wife. "Listen, I have to take care of something. I'll be back as soon as I can."
Alicia closed her eyes for a second. When she opened them again she seemed to have found some strength again. "Alright, give me Nia back. I can take care now."
He nodded shortly, then handed her his daughter back.
"No, Daddy, don't go." Nia called out for him.
"I have to go, sweetheart. Mummy is gonna watch you again, okay?" It broke his heart to see his daughter crying out for him. He just wanted to hold her close to him and never let go again. But instead he stood up, gave them both a quick kiss and left with Doral to see what was happening on this ship.
When they entered the next room Apollo saw three people, two men and a woman, sitting around a table. Apollo recognised the woman as Laura Roslin. When they noticed them enter the room the older man got up and offered his hand to Apollo. According to his uniform this man must be the pilot, Apollo noticed.
"Captain, it's good to see you again." He was greeted by Roslin.
"Likewise." Apollo replied before turning back to the Pilot. "Thanks for the lift."
"Ah, you should thank her." The Pilot showed in Roslins direction.
When Apollo looked down at her again she was already back to discussion with the younger man sitting next to her. "Start the cargo transfer and prep A3 for survivors." He heart her say.
He was quite surprised by her words. "I'm sorry, survivors?" he asked.
"As soon as the attack began the government ordered a full stop on all civilian vessels. So now we got hundreds of stranded ships in the solar system, some are lost, some are damaged, some are losing power. We have enough space on this ship to accommodate up to 500 people and we're going to need every bit of it."
While Roslin explained this the young man who had sat next to her – probably her Assistant, Apollo thought – got up to take out her orders.
"But we don't even know what the tactical situation is out there." Doral cut in, shocked by what he was hearing.
"The tactical situation is that we are losing, right Captain?" She looked questioningly at Apollo.
He slowly nodded. "Right." She was right. There was nothing else they could do. It was over.
"So we pick up as many people as we can, we try to find a safe-haven to put down. Captain, I'd like you to look over the navigational charts for a likely place to hide from the Cylons. That's all." With that Laura Roslin left the room.
When Apollo looked back at Doral he had to grin at the mans shocked face. "Lady's in Charge." He said while walking pass him.
While Apollo checked the navigational charts as Roslin had asked him to he listened to an incoming transmission from the Government that all ministers and officials should go to case orange. Questioningly he looked at Laura Roslin who sat in a seat behind the co-pilot.
"It's an automated message. It's designed to be sent out in case the president, the vice president and most of the cabinet are dead or incapacitated." She explained in a thin voice. There was some silence following her words as everyone tried to comprehend what that meant.
Then Roslin turned to the pilot. "I need you ... to send my ID code back on the exact same frequency."
"Yes Ma'am." The Pilot answered solemnly then began to tape the code she gave him. After he was done Roslin nodded and got up quietly to leave the cockpit. Apollo watched her with a worried expression.
After checking on his wife and daughter again Lee went on to look after Roslin. He found her in an almost deserted passenger aisle, sitting in one of the seats. She looked tired and exhausted. He took a seat opposite from hers and they both stared at each other in silence for some time.
"How far down"? Apollo finally asked.
"43rd in line of succession. I know all 42 ahead of me from the president down. Most of them served with him in the first administration. Some of them came with him from he mayors office. I was there with him on his first campaign. I never really liked politics. Kept telling myself I was getting out, but ... He had this way about him ..." Roslin said in a low voice. "I just couldn't say no."
At this moment the pilot approached the two of them and handed a piece of paper to Roslin.
"Thank you." She nodded at him, trying to hold her tears back. "I'll need a ... priest." She quietly said.
Apollo knew exactly what that meant. He gave her a sad look as she walked away.
10 minutes later he watched with his wife beside him and his daughter on his arms as Laura Roslin, former Secretary of Education, was sworn in to President. Raising her right hand Roslin repeated the Priestess words.
"I, Laura Roslin, do now avow and affirm that I accept the office of the .. that I accept the office of the president of the 12 colonies of Kobol. And that I will protect and defend the sovereignty of the colonies with every fibre of my being."
She looked like she would break down every minute but she stood straight throughout the ceremony, only wiping away a tear at the end of her vow. Apollo thought he had never seen a stronger woman in his life.
Half an hour later their shuttle was approached by another colonial vessel.
"Geminon Liner 17 0 1, this is Colonial 798 ..." The Pilot stopped. He slightly looked at the President standing behind him before he went on. "No, strike that, this is Colonial 1."
Roslin gave him a thankful look. She still couldn't quit comprehend what happened. Never in her wildest dreams would she have seen herself in a position like this.
While the Pilot was still in contact with the other vessel another transmission came over the printer. Apollo pulled it out, glanced a short look over the paper, then handed it to Roslin.
"What is it?" She asked him.
With a pressed voice Apollo read the message out loud. "To all Colonial Units. I am taking command of the fleet. All Units ordered to rendezvous at Ragnar Anchorage for regroup and counter-attack. Acknowledged by same encryption protocol. Adama."
He was relieved his father was still alive. But did it have to be him to take command over the fleet? Then a thought crossed his mind. If his father was alive then there was a good chance that Kara was also. He clinged to that thought. He didn't know what he would do if Kara was dead. Even if he hadn't spoken with her for the last two years the knowledge that he simply had to pick up the phone to talk to her had always giving him a warm feeling.
When Apollo looked back at the president he knew what was coming next.
"Captain Apollo! Please inform Commander Adama that we are currently involved in rescue operations and we require his assistance." Roslin ordered him as he had already expected she would. "Ask him how many hospital beds he has available and how long it will take him to get here."
Apollo looked at her uncomfortably. "I, uhh ..."
"Yes?" She looked at him questioningly.
He suddenly felt like a ten year old. He tried to regain his composure. "I'm not sure he's gonna respond very well to that request." He replied carefully.
"Then tell him .... this comes directly from the president of the 12 colonies ... and it's not a request." She said sternly.
"Yes Sir! And Sir ... Apollo's just my call sign. My name is Lee Adama." He hesitantly told her.
"I know who you are. But Captain Apollo has a nice ring to it, don't you think?" She winked at him, then smilingly left the room.
Apollo smiled back. He still felt uncomfortably but went to take out her orders immediately.
When Commander Adama received the message from Colonial 1 he couldn't believe what he was hearing. He felt relieved to know that his son was alright but he couldn't be serious with this. He asked if Colonial 1 was in voice range. He would end this before it went too far.
On his order his Communication Officer, Petty Officer Dualla, Dee, as he usually called her, picked up the microphone.
"Colonial 1, Galactica! Galactica actual wishes to speak with Apollo." She listened to the response for a second than handed the microphone to Adama.
He suddenly felt nervous and searched for the right words to say to his son. "Are you ... Is your ship alright?"
Apollo felt taken aback by these words. "We ... We're both fine. Thanks for asking." He replied coldly. He tried to ignore the odd look the Pilot shot him.
"Is your ship FTL functioning?" Adama went on.
Apollo turned to the pilot who nodded. "That's affirmative."
"Then you're ordered to bring yourself and all of your passengers to the rendezvous point. Acknowledge?" The worried father was gone. Adama was full back to being a Commander.
Apollo let out a small sigh while he thought of how to respond to this. "Acknowledge ... receipt of message." He knew his father wouldn't except that. And he was right.
"What the hell does that mean?" He could clearly hear the anger in his fathers voice.
"It means ... I heard you."
"You're gonna have to do a lot better than that Captain." Adama had to take a deep breath to stay calm.
"We're engaged in rescue operations."
"You are to abort your mission immediately and proceed to Ragnar!" Adama ordered.
"The president has given me a direct order." Apollo replied.
"You're talking about the Secretary of Education! We're in the middle of a war and you're taking orders from a school teacher?" Adama yelled into the microphone. He couldn't believe his son could be so blind.
Apollo just sat still for a second. He didn't know what to say to this. He didn't even notice the President enter the cockpit listening to the last words his father said – or better screamed.
Suddenly the controls were starting to beep. While Apollo still thought of what to answer his father the Pilot cut in. "We got trouble."
"Stand by Galactica ... What?" He cut the transmission and turned to the pilot.
"Inbound Cylon fighters." The pilot reported scared.
"How long till they get here?" Roslin asked. Surprised Apollo noticed that she was in the cockpit.
"ETA 2 Minutes."
Apollo turned to the President. "He's right. We have to go. Now!"
"Madam president, we can't defend this ship." Apollo tried to reason with her.
"We're not going to abandon all these people." She looked him straight in the eye.
"But Sir, if we stay ..." he tried again.
"I've made my decision, Captain."
Apollo looked at her in disbelief. "You're the President." He said sharply.
"Alright then." Roslin sighed.
Suddenly Apollo got an idea. "Permission to go below?"
The president just nodded shortly at him.
Adama couldn't believe his son had just cut him of like this. Fuming he stared at the microphone still in his hands. Suddenly he heard Lt. Gaeta yell.
"Sir! We have a remote sensor telemetry at Captain Apollo's location and two enemy fighters closing in on their co-ordinates."
After leaving the cockpit Apollo ran straight downstairs to the Cargo Bay. On his way there he passed Alicia and Nia. He ignored their calls for him. It hurt but he had no time to loose. When he reached the Electric Pulse Generators he found a few hours earlier he pushed some buttons on the panel.
After hearing Gaeta's words Adama quickly picked up the microphone again.
"Colonial 1! This is Galactica! Apollo, you have inbound enemy fighters coming towards you ... Get out of there!!! Apollo!! Apollo!!! Lee get .... Lee!!!!" he yelled but didn't get any respond. Desperately Adama looked at the Dradis Console and watched in horror as the dots that showed Colonial 1 position enveloped in a great blue cloud which disperses to show an empty screen.
All Personal in CIC stood in shocked silence.
"50 kiloton thermonuclear detonation." Gaeta reported in a quiet voice. "Cylons moving off ... Sir."
Adama felt tears well up in his eyes. Still shocked he stared at the Dradis Console. His son was dead.
“Lieutenant, what did you do to my viper?” Chief Tyrol called out loud, shocked at what he saw before him.
After Starbuck had climbed out of her viper, she gave a surprised look at the back of her ship. “I wondered why the engine gave out.” She stated dryly.
Tyrol let out a frustrated sigh. “We’re gonna have to pull the whole mounting. Get the high lift!” He told one of his men. Then he turned back to Starbuck. “I don’t know how you managed to fly this thing, much less land it.”
“It’s not something I want to think about right now.” Starbuck replied in an agitated voice while taking her gloves off. “Where’s Prozna? He’s got to get that frakking gimble out or I’ll have his ass.”
A sad expression flashed over Tyrol’s face. “He’s dead. Sir. He died in the fire.”
Kara closed her eyes for a second. “How many did we lose?” She quietly asked, not looking at Tyrol.
“Right.” Kara shuddered. This was all too much. She turned away from Tyrol and started to walk away.
“Uh, Lieutenant?” Tyrol called after her. When she slowly turned around, he continued hesitantly. “I don’t know if you heard about Apollo, but ...”
“Heard what?” Kara asked impatiently when Tyrol didn’t continue. Then she could read it in his eyes.
“Right.” She knew Lee was dead. One of so many. She closed her eyes, tried to shut the world out for a moment. She shivered shortly then turned back to Tyrol.
“Any word on Sharon?” She asked.
Tyrol swallowed. “No, Sir.” He sadly replied.
With that, Kara turned around and continued to walk away. When she left the hangar bay, she could hardly breathe. She felt the tears well up in her eyes. She didn’t want anyone to see her crying though. The great Starbuck doesn’t cry. Not even when her best friend in the world had just died. When she arrived at her bunkroom, she was relieved that it was empty. Then she remembered it was empty because most of her bunkmates were dead. She cried out loudly and finally let the tears run. She sagged down on the floor and cried and grieved for her friends. But mostly she cried for Lee. There had been so many things she had wanted to tell him. How many times had she thought to just call him up in the last two years? But before she could even pick up the phone, her courage had left her and she had told herself she would do it some other time. But that time never came. And when he finally stood in front of her today all they did was fight. They had always been good at that. There was so much she wanted to tell him and now it was too late.
Lee was surrounded by darkness. His head hurt like hell. When he tried to open his eyes and lift his head a stabbing pain forced him to let his head fall back and he quickly closed his eyes again. He suddenly became aware of someone calling his name. He slowly opened his eyes again and tried to focus on where he was and what had happened. Then it all came back. The attack on the colonies, the Cylons ... everything. He suddenly realized there were people next to him. The President and the shuttle’s Pilot. They were holding him by his shoulders. He took a deep breath before he tried to talk. “That was fun ...,” He slurred slightly.
President Roslin was clearly relieved to see him awake. Carefully she helped him to get up.
“I think it worked.” Lee tried again and this time he found it much easier to talk. His strength seemed to return quickly as the world around him came into focus and stopped turning upside down.
“What exactly did you do?” Roslin asked.
“I basically just used the hyper drive to manipulate the energy coils. I put ... I put out ... out a big pulse of electroma ... magnetic energy that must have ... disabled the warheads. Uhhh ...” Suddenly a wave of dizziness and nausea hit Lee and he staggered to the side. For a second the world around him turned black again. When his senses returned, he noticed he was still standing thanks to the pilot who still held him firmly by his arms. He tried to go on with his explanation.
“I’m ... I’m hoping that it looked like a nuclear explosion...” He finished. He still felt nauseous and tired out from talking but at least he finally didn’t feel so light-headed anymore. He took that as a sign of improvement. His head still hurt like hell but he did his best to ignore that.
“Oh, so that’s what that was.” Roslin said. She hadn’t really understood much of what Apollo had told them but his last words told her all she needed to know.
“Yeah.” Lee replied.
“So, uhh ...” The Pilot started, but Roslin was faster.
“Did it fool the Cylons?” She asked Apollo.
“I don’t know. But if ... if they weren’t fooled then they’d be on top of us by now.” He replied.
“Does the rest of the fleet know about this trick?” The Pilot asked impressed.
“I ... I doubt it. It was just a theory we toyed with in War College, but ... it never used to work during the wargames, the Cylons would see right through it and destroy the targets anyway.” Lee answered. He finally felt the rest of his strength returning to him.
“The lesson here is not to ask follow up questions but simply to say: Thank you, Captain Apollo, for saving our collective asses!” Roslin stated determinedly, smiling gratefully at him.
“You’re welcome.” Apollo replied, smiling back. “Now, if I could suggest ...”
“Evacuate the passenger liner and get the hell out of here before the Cylons realize their mistake. I’m right with you, Captain.” Roslin had read his thoughts.
Together she and Apollo quickly left the Cargo bay, followed by the Pilot.
“Lee, are you alright?” Alicia cried out as soon as she saw her husband stepping into the room. Lee glanced at the president walking beside him. When he saw her smile approvingly, he quickly went towards his family.
“I’m okay. How are you?” He asked worried after he had embraced them both.
“We’re fine now. But everyone just collapsed. When I woke up again I had no idea what happened.” Alicia looked questioningly at him. She and Nia were both half scared to death and Nia was near crying again.
“It was a trick to make the Cylons believe we were dead. I’ll explain it all later. But we’re safe for now.” He sighed. “I have to go. I’m sorry. I’ll be back as soon as I can.” He gave both of them a quick kiss then left to follow the President.
After Kara had calmed down again she went to take a quick shower. After she was done, she returned to her bunkroom to get some fresh clothes. There was still no one in there. Before she shut her locker door, her eyes fell on a picture attached to the mirror. It showed her closely embraced with Zak. She took the picture in her hands and carefully unfolded it. The part that had been hidden showed Lee standing a bit apart from her and Zak. She looked at the photograph in her hand before pinning it back on the mirror – this time she let it unfolded so it still showed all three of them. Kara gently traced Lee’s face with her fingers and quietly started praying.
“Lords of Kobol, hear my prayers. Take the souls of your sons and daughters lost this day ... especially that of Lee Adama ... into your hands.”
She could feel the tears well up in her eyes again and tried to force them down. She couldn’t grieve now. There was time for that later. She had to get down to the hangar bay and help with the repairs. She glanced one last time at the picture before shutting her locker door. She took a deep breath and tried to regain her composure before she left the still empty bunkroom.
After the passengers from the Geminon Liner were all safe on Colonial 1 President Roslin walked over to Apollo who was still studying the navigational charts to find a safe place to hide. This was harder then he had thought at first. The Cylons could be anywhere.
“Capt. Apollo, how are you doing?” She asked still concerned for him, as he still looked a bit pale.
“Much better, thank you, Madam President.” He assured her. He figured it wasn’t necessary to mention his still pounding headache.
Thoughtfully Roslin looked at him. “I assume that was your family earlier?” She questioned.
“Yes, my wife Alicia and my daughter Nia. They were visiting me on the Galactica.”
“Why don’t you bring them up here? You could be much closer to them. They wouldn’t disturb anyone here. And I’m sure they would appreciate to see you more often.” Roslin warmly smiled at him.
Lee looked at her gratefully. “Thank you, Madam President. That’s very kind.” A few minutes later, he had his wife and daughter sitting right next to him. Suddenly searching for a safe place didn’t seem so difficult anymore.
A short time later Colonial 1 received an emergency call from a nearby Raptor. As it turned out it was a Raptor from the Galactica. Apollo had met the pilot, Sharon “Boomer” Valeri, only hours ago on the Galactica. Lee already felt as if that had been ages ago. Boomer reported that they were nearly out of fuel and that she had several refugees from Caprica on board, among them a Dr. Gaius Baltar, a famous scientist who was often called a genius in the media. Apparently, the Raptor’s ECO had given up his seat to save this “Genius”. They quickly approached the Raptor who was just a few minutes away and then got it safely on board.
When Apollo reached the Raptor, the first refugees were starting to get out. Most of them were exhausted so he helped them climb down. Again and again, he was asked if he had heard anything from their brothers, husbands, parents. But there wasn’t really much he could tell them.
“Captain.” Boomer approached Apollo and they both stepped aside so they could talk undisturbed.
“I’ve got two communication pods left, Sir. But that’s it. No jiggers, no drones, no markers. Nothing.” She told him frustrated.
“Well, at least you’ve still got your electronic sweep. That old crate of mine can barely navigate from A to B.” He waved at his Viper that stood nearby.
“This old crate may have saved your life, Sir.” Boomer stated.
“How’s that?” Apollo looked at her questioningly.
“The Viper Mark 7’s ... The Cylons shut them down like they threw a switch or something. And I’ve been hearing reports like that from all over. The only fighters that have any success at all are either old or in need of some major overhaul.” Boomer explained.
Apollo thought about that for a moment when he noticed Dr. Gaius Baltar leaving the Raptor.
“Is that him?” He asked Boomer.
“Yeah ... Hope he’s worth it!” She said loud enough for Baltar to hear her. She knew it wasn’t his fault that Helo, her ECO and friend, stayed back on Caprica. Helo had made that decision for himself. He had told her that Baltar was worth saving more then he was. She didn’t agree with him but she had still left him on Caprica. She blamed herself for that. But she also blamed Baltar. He could have refused to take somebody else’s seat but he hadn’t hesitated to jump into the Raptor.
Slightly ashamed at her outbreak she looked back to Apollo. “Sorry, Sir.”
“Don’t be, I hope he’s worth it too ...” Apollo assured her. Then he turned to Baltar.
“Dr. Baltar.” He approached the man and introduced himself. “Captain Lee Adama. ... The President asked to see you, Sir.”
Baltar looked at him in astonishment. “President Adar’s alive?”
“No, I’m afraid Adar’s dead. President Laura Roslin was sworn in a couple of hours ago.” Apollo explained.
“Oh ... Who?” Baltar asked confused.
“If you’ll come with me, um ... she’s this way.” Apollo showed him the right direction and they left the Cargo Bay, followed by Boomer. For some reason Apollo already had resentments against Baltar though he couldn’t explain why.
President Roslin was talking to some passengers when she noticed Apollo, Boomer and Baltar enter the room. She saw Apollo smiling at his daughter who winked at him excitedly. She had to smile at herself at this. She also noticed her assistant, Billy Keikeya, approaching the Captain’s daughter with a big grin on his face. The little girl was already winning over everyone’s hearts. Then she turned her attention to Dr. Baltar.
“Dr. Baltar. It’s a pleasure to meet you. We met at last year’s Caprica City Symposium.” She greeted Baltar with a polite smile.
“Oh yeah ... of course.” Baltar stammered, slightly perplexed. “You’ll have to forgive me, I’m bad with faces.”
“Oh no. That’s perfectly all right. I’m sure I wouldn’t remember me either.” She shortly laughed at him before she went back to business. “Doctor, I need you to serve as my chief scientific consultant and analyst regarding the Cylons and their technology.”
“I’d be honoured, Madam President.” Baltar replied.
Satisfied Roslin turned her attention on Boomer. “Lt. Valeri, is it Valeri?”
“I understand that your ship has a limited faster than light capability.” Roslin questioned.
“Uh, yes, Sir. The Raptor was designed to make short jumps ahead of the fleet, scout for enemy ships and jump back and report.” Boomer explained.
“I want you to go out there and find as many survivors as you can, bring them back to this position. We will form a convoy. We will guide them out of the combat zone and into safety.” As Roslin explained her intentions, she was pleased to see that Lt. Valeri was apparently very eager to take on this assignment.
“Yes, Sir.” Boomer replied, and then she quickly left the room to go back to her Raptor. As soon as it was ready to fly again, she would do what the President had asked her. She was looking forward to finally do something other than just sit around in her Raptor and wait.
Boomers mission to find more stranded civilians worked better then they had anticipated. She found more and more ships and brought them back to Colonial 1.
President Roslin had felt it necessary to visit most of the ships herself and see if anything was needed. Apollo had planned to make an engineering survey of all ships later that day but Roslin was still determined to make that first round of the ships herself.
Shortly after her return to Colonial 1, she was approached by Apollo.
“Message from Lt. Valeri, she’s found a fuel refinery ship filled with Tilium.” He told her, smiling satisfied.
“Ah, good, about time we got a break.” Roslin replied relieved. “That brings us up to what? 60 ships so far?”
Apollo nods. He would have to tell Boomer what a great job she’s done when he saw her the next time.
“Not bad for a few hours work.” Roslin stated.
“No, Sir. But only about 40 of those ships have faster than light capabilities.” Apollo said slightly worried.
“Hmm ...” Roslin thought about what that could mean in case the Cylons came back.
“We should start transferring people off the sublights on the FTL’s as soon as possible.” Apollo went on.
Roslin hated to leave all those ships behind. The ships would be very crowed and who knew for how long they had to stay on them. But Apollo was right. The risk of another Cylon attack was too big. If the Cylons found them again, their best chance of escape was to jump away immediately.
“Alright.” She finally agreed.
At that moment, the pilot stepped up to them, followed by Aaron Doral and Billy Keikeya. He didn’t have good news.
“A Cylon raider just jumped in and out fairly quickly. Lt. Valeri tried to jam his signal but it didn’t work.” He reported. He was clearly scared but tried not to show it.
“It definitely scanned us before the jump.” He went on.
“We have to go ... now! The Cylons will be here any minute.” Apollo quickly said.
“Will they be able to track us through a jump?” Roslin wanted to know.
“No, Sir. It’s impossible.” Apollo replied.
“Theoretically impossible?” Roslin needed to now exactly how good their chance of escape by jumping away was before she was willing to make a decision.
“Theoretically ...” Apollo admitted.
“Madam President, there are thousands of people still on the sublight ships. We can’t just leave them.” Doral called out shocked.
“I agree. We should use every second to get as many people off the sublights as we can. We can wait to jump until we pick up a Cylon strike force ...” The Pilot agreed with Doral but was interrupted by Apollo.
“We’re easy targets. They’re gonna jump right in the middle of our ships with a hand full of nukes and wipe us out before we have the chance to react.” He explained sharply.
“We can’t just leave them all behind; you’ll be sacrificing thousands of people.” Doral tried again.
“But we’ll be saving tens of thousands. I’m sorry to make it a numbers game, but we’re talking about the survival of our race here. And we don’t have the luxury of taking risks and hoping for the best because if we lose we lose everything.” He shortly glanced to his wife and daughter before he turned back to Roslin.
“Now, Madam President, this is a decision that needs to be made right now.” He looked at Roslin.
Roslin looked thoughtfully at the men standing around her and reflected on their words.
“Order the fleet to jump to Ragnar immediately.” She finally said.
Apollo and the Pilot quickly walked to the cockpit. When Lee passed by his wife he saw her shocked expression. He hoped she understood that this was their only chance to survive.
After they reached the cockpit, the Pilot informed all ships of the jump and began to transmit the jump coordinates to the FTL-Ships. Then he began his usual message to the passengers on board as he had done a hundred times before. But this time it left him with a sick feeling. “This is your pilot speaking. Passengers please take your seats and stand by to jump. Thank you.” He shortly turned to Apollo and sighed deeply
“Set ESB trajectory ...”He said.
“Colonial 1! For gods sake you just can’t leave us here!” One of the sublight ship’s pilots called over the comm.
“Set.” Apollo said sternly.
“Colonial 1, this is Picon 3 6. I can’t believe you want us to leave these people behind.”
The Pilot and Apollo went on with the necessary preparations for the jump.
“At least tell us where you’re going ... we’ll follow at sublight ... PLEASE!” Another cry for help was heard over the comm. The Pilot looked up at Apollo. He was about to transmit the jump coordinates to the sublight ships but was stopped by Apollo.
“No! If they’re captured then the Cylons know too.” Apollo urged the Pilot to understand. They had no other choice but to leave these people behind. The pilot looked frustrated but he did as Apollo told him. He didn’t send the coordinates.
“I’ve got 50 people on board, Colonial 1. Do you copy this?”
Apollo felt sick. He couldn’t take much more of this. He felt like the screams of the people they would have to leave behind would follow him for the rest of his life.
“Speeding up FTL drive now.” The Pilot reported silently.
“Don’t leave us here! Show a little humanity! We don’t have any weapons!”
Apollo tried to shut out these calls. He swallowed down the bile that was starting to rise in his throat.
“All ships, prepare to jump on our mark. 5 ...” He began to count down.
“Colonial 1. Please respond!” Another desperate cry was heard over the com.
“May the Lords of Kobol protect those souls we leave behind ...” One of the Pilots of the FTL-Ships prayed over the comm.
Apollo noticed the first Cylon Raiders jumped in near the ships surrounding Colonial 1. They had to get out of here. He hoped they hadn’t waited too long. Several more screams were heard over the comm as the other ships noticed the Cylon Raiders as well.
Apollo tried desperately to shut out the numerous cries that were still transmitted into the cockpit.
“1 ... Mark.”
As the FTL-ships jumped away one after the other, the first Cylon Raiders reached the sublight ships that were left behind. They immediately fired their nuclear missiles. Within minutes, all Colonial sublight ships were destroyed.
The Galactica had docked at Ragnar Anchorage, a military weapons depot that was hidden within a permanent electric storm. While the Galactica was restocked with weapons again, Tigh stood in the middle of CIC, waiting anxiously for the Commander to return. Adama had left Galactica for Ragnar after Chief Tyrol had reported that they had stumbled upon some crazy arms dealer named Leoben who threatened to shoot at anyone who would come near him. Adama had managed to convince the man that they needed the weapons to fight back the Cylons. Then due to an accident, one of the warheads had exploded. Adama and Leoben had found cover in a nearby corridor. But now the exit back to the main room was blocked and they had to find another way out. Tigh hoped that his friend would come back soon.
“Action stations! Action stations!” The alarms system suddenly had gone on.
“We have multiple contacts coming down through the storm towards the Anchorage! Looks like more than 40 ships.” Lt. Gaeta reported.
‘What the hell’ Tigh thought. ‘How did they find us here?’
“Cut us loose from the station! Launch the alert fighters!” He ordered. Then he picked up the microphone to announce Condition 1 when he was interrupted by Dee.
“Wait! ... Wait. I’m getting colonial signals now ...” She told him while still listening to incoming transmissions.
“Confirm that! Don’t just accept friendly ID!” Tigh ordered her. This could be a Cylon trap. But his worries were dispersed when Dee confirmed the signals as friendly only seconds later. Relieved he picked up the microphone.
“Action stations stand down!” He announced. Everyone in CIC relaxed visibly at that.
“The lead ship is requesting permission to come on board, Sir.” Dee reported. “They say ... they say they have the president of the colonies on board.” Dee smiled.
Tigh looked at her surprised. “Grant their request.” He told her. This should get interesting.
Tigh had gone down to the hangar deck to greet the new President of the colonies. He was relieved they were still alive even though he had absolutely no idea how they had managed to survive a nuclear strike like that. When Apollo quickly explained what he did, Tigh had to smile at himself. ‘Like father, like son.’ He thought to himself. ‘An Adama isn’t that easy to kill.’ He was already looking forward to let Bill now that his son was still alive and safe on his ship.
After he had welcomed the President on the Galactica, they all went to a conference room where they could discuss further actions undisturbed. What started as a polite talk soon evolved into a loud argument between Roslin and Tigh. They obviously had many disagreements, to say the least.
“We are in the middle of the repairing and rearming this ship!” Tigh yelled at Roslin. “We can’t afford to lose a single man off the line to start caring refugees!”
Roslin rolled her eyes in anger. How could one man be so stubborn, she thought. “We have 50.000 people out there. Some of them are hurt! Our priority has to be caring for refugees!” She yelled back at him.
“My priority is preparing this ship for combat! In case you haven’t heard there’s a war going on!” He couldn’t believe this woman. She was President for what? 5 minutes? And already she thought she could order anyone around, Tigh thought angry.
“Colonel, the war is over and we lost.” Roslin stated more calmly now.
“We’ll see about that.” Tigh pressed out. In his heart, he knew she was right but he had been in the military for far too long to just give up now and run away.
“Oh yes, we will. In the meantime however, as President of the Colonies, I’m giving you a direct order ...!” Roslin determinedly looked at Tigh.
Tigh snorted furious. “You don’t give orders on this ship!” He yelled again.
“... To provide men and equipment!” Roslin glared at Tigh, simply ignoring his last remark.
When Tigh looked like he would explode any second Apollo finally had had enough.
“Hold on!” He cut in before Tigh could say anything else. “Colonel, at least give us a couple of disaster pods.” He pleaded.
“Us?” Tigh looked sharply at Apollo.
“Sir, we have 50.000 people out there. 50.000! Some of them are sick, some are wounded. My wife and daughter are on one of these ships ... 2 disaster pods, Colonel. You can do that.”
Tigh had finally calmed down a bit as he listened to Apollo. “Because you’re the Old Man’s son and because he’s gonna be so damn happy you’re alive ... okay.” He gave in. “Two pods. But no personnel. You get them yourselves and you distribute them yourselves. And you are all off this ship before we jump back.” He looked at Roslin as he said those last words. Then he turned back to Apollo. “You report to the flight deck! You’re senior pilot now, Captain!” He ordered sharply.
“Yes, Sir.” Apollo saluted. Then he smiled at Roslin. She nodded thankfully to him. Then he turned around and stepped out into the corridor.
Before Apollo reported to the flight deck as he had been ordered to he quickly went back to Colonial 1 to see after his family.
“Hey you two. How are you holding up?” He asked as he sat himself next to them. His daughter immediately crawled into his arms.
“We’re okay. What’s going on?” Alicia replied.
“Well, apparently I just got promoted to CAG. ... We’ll stay on Galactica for now. ... Uhm, I don’t have any real place for you to stay yet but I’m working on it. For now, I think it’s best if you just wait in the mess hall. I’ll get someone to bring you there. Okay?”
“Okay.” Alicia looked at him disappointed. She had hoped Lee would finally have some more time now that they had escaped the Cylons.
“I’m sorry. I’ll come see you there as soon as I can.” Lee promised. He pulled both Alicia and Nia in a tight embrace before he got up to find someone who could show them the way to the mess.
A few minutes later Lee found himself walking through the hangar bay looking for Kara. He finally found her underneath a Viper, doing repairs. He felt relieved to see her again. He felt like a lifetime had passed since he had seen her the last time. Slowly he approached her Viper.
“Hey.” He called out.
Lee saw Kara froze as she heard his voice. Slowly she pulled herself from underneath the Viper and stared at Lee in disbelief for a second. Lee held out his hand to help her up. When she finally stood before him, she held onto his hand a little bit longer then necessary.
“I thought you were dead.” She stammered, still staring at him.
Apollo chuckled. “Well, I thought you were in hack.”
“Huh ... It’s goo ...” She swallowed.” “It’s good to be wrong.” She gave him a small smile.
“Well, you should be used to it by now.” He grinned at her.
“Everyone has a skill.” She quietly let out a small laugh. They both fell into a comfortable silence.
“So ... Did you miss me?” Lee finally asked grinning at her.
“Every second.” She grinned back at him.
For a while, they both stared at each other intensely. Kara felt like she would drown in his blue eyes and Lee couldn’t break away from those green eyes that he had missed for so long. But finally, he forced himself to look somewhere else. So instead, he glanced at her Viper.
“So, uhm .. So how ... how go the repairs?” He asked.
“On track. Another hour and she’ll be ready to launch.” Kara said, glancing at her Viper now too. But after only a second, she looked back at him. “So, I guess you’re the new CAG now.” She stated.
“Yeah, that’s what they tell me.” He looked back at her, smiling shyly.
“It’s good. That’s the last thing I want.” Kara said shaking her head. “I’m not a big enough dipstick for the job.” She went on, giving him one of her trademark smiles.
Apollo raised an eyebrow, then started laughing silently. Again, they looked at each other for some time.
And again, it was Lee who looked away first. “I’ll be in the squadron ready room.” He said.
Kara couldn’t force the smile of her face as she watched Lee walk away. The Gods had finally listened to her prayers. Lee was alive. She still had trouble believing it. She was afraid if she lost sight of him, it would turn out to be just a dream. His father must be overwhelmed with joy that his son was still alive. That is if he even knew. Last she heard, he was still on Ragnar.
“Hey! Does your father know you’re still breathing?” Kara called after Lee.
Lee turned back around to her. She saw the anger light up his face but he quickly got his emotions back under control and his all too familiar mask slipped over his face again. “I’ll let him know ...” He replied with a forced smile. She just couldn’t let go of it, he thought angry. Suddenly he remembered that he still hadn’t told her about Alicia and Nia. He figured it was about time he let her know about that part of his live before she found out from someone else. So slowly, Lee walked back a few steps in her direction, his anger towards her already forgotten.
“There’s something I have to tell you.” He started hesitantly. When he saw her green eyes looking expectantly at him he felt as if he couldn’t breath. He closed his eyes. It took all his strength to say the next words.
“I’m married.” He looked at her, guilt written all over his face.
Kara just stood there shocked, her mouth wide open, like she wanted to say something but couldn’t find the right words.
“I know I should have told you before. I wanted to. But the longer I waited ...” He stopped not sure how to explain to his best friend that he had been married for almost two years, even had a daughter, without ever telling her.
“We have a daughter. Nia. She’s 18 month old now and the sweetest little girl I’ve ever seen.” He had to smile when he thought of his daughter. But when he looked back at Kara, his smile quickly faded. “They’re both on Galactica now.” He went on quietly. He felt more miserable with every second that passed. Kara still hadn’t said a word. He braced himself to be hit now any minute. That was her usual response when she learned about something that made her angry. And he was sure this had made her very angry.
Kara was at a loss of words. Married. Lee Adama was married. She couldn’t believe it. She wanted to scream at him for never telling her, for shutting her out of his life so completely for the last two years. But then the guilt over what she had done welled up in her again. How could she be angry with Lee if she was the actual reason why he hadn’t spoken with her all this time. Even if Lee didn’t know, she was responsible for all the pain he went through. She could do nothing but stare at him for some time while she searched for the right words to say.
“Uhm, well, congratulations then, I guess.” She finally pressed out, forcing herself to smile at him. “I’m happy for you.” She tried to convince herself that it was true. That she did feel happy for him. He had found someone to spend the rest of his life with. That was good. It was what she had always wanted for him. But she still felt like she had just lost something important. She went a few steps closer to him and gave him a warm hug. “I really am.”
Lee looked at her surprised. “I’d expected a punch to the face or something similar but that’s definitely better.” He said smiling, still not quiet convinced that she would let him of the hook so easy.
“I understand your reasons.” She told him. “And there are things I haven’t told you ...” Kara stopped. She couldn’t tell him. She knew she had to but she just couldn’t bring herself to say the words. He was her best friend and even though they hadn’t talked for almost two years, he was still the most important person in her life. If she told him, he would hate her forever. She remembered how cold and full of hatred his eyes had looked when he had screamed at his father at Zak’s funeral and had blamed him for his brother’s death. She couldn’t survive if he ever looked at her like that. She just couldn’t; at least not now. Not after what happened today. She let out a long deep breath.
“Does your father know?” She asked silently.
Lee shot her an annoyed look. She just never knew when to stop. She hadn’t changed a bit. And for some reason he was glad for that. He chuckled and gave her one of his famous smiles.
“I’ll let him know.” He repeated his words from before. Then he turned around and left the hangar bay.
Tigh watched in shock as two crewmen carried the body of Leoben on a stretcher past him down the corridor. A Cylon. How could this man be a frakking Cylon? He shook his head in bewilderment.
“This just gets worse and worse. Now the Cylons look like us.”
He turned around to Adama who was being treated by a medical. He had a pretty bad looking wound on his forehead but other than that, he seemed alright. After Adama had found out that Leoben was a Cylon it had come to a fight. Tigh still wondered how Adama had managed to kill that Cylon with his bare hands. He must have put all his anger and grief about his sons presumed death in his hits to be able to win that fight the way he had.
“Down to our blood.” Adama let out a frustrated sigh.
“You realize what this means ... They could be anywhere, be anyone.” Tigh looked suspiciously around himself.
“I’ve had time to think about it.” Adama said.
“So what do we do?” Tigh asked while walking up and down the corridor a few steps.
“I don’t know. ... How are we doing with the warheads?” Adama wanted to know. It was time they got back to fighting the Cylons. They already lost too much time here on Ragnar.
“Magazine 2 is secure, 3 and 4 within the hour.” Tigh reported. Then his expression changed and he looked down at Adama again. It was about time he let his friend know about his son. “Something else, Lee is alive.”
Adama sharply looked up in disbelief. Then the look in his eyes changed to one of tremendous relief.
Lee figured he couldn’t wait much longer to talk with his father. Alicia and Nia couldn’t stay in the mess all day. Also, he needed to see that his father was alright, even if he wouldn’t admit that to anyone, not even himself. After he had heard that the Commander was back on Galactica, he went to his quarter to see if he was there. When he arrived, he slowly went inside.
“Commander?” He called out. Lee looked around the room for this father when his eyes fell on a picture of his mother, holding tightly on to Zak and himself as children. His mother. She was probably dead now along with anyone else on Caprica. He remembered the last time he spoke to her. She had told him about her wedding plans and how exited she was. She had sounded so happy. And now she was dead. He felt the tears well up in his eyes. Unconsciously he raised his hand to his forehead. His headache had become worse over the last hours.
Suddenly he noticed that someone else was with him in the room. He turned around to find his father stepping up to him. He sniffed shortly and tried to get his emotions back under control. He hated to be so vulnerable in front of his father.
“I’m sorry.” Adama silently said when he saw the picture in Lee’s hand.
Lee was still fighting down the tears. He looked down at the picture again for a few seconds. When he was convinced his voice was steady enough he turned back to Adama.
“I need to talk to you about something, Commander.” He said unsure how to bring the subject up. He didn’t feel ready yet to inform his father of his wife and daughter but he really had no other choice.
“I need to request a private quarter.” He quickly said. He didn’t want to look at his father so instead he stared at the floor.
“Granted.” Adama said quietly.
Surprised Lee looked up. He hadn’t expected that his father would just simply agree to his request without any further questions.
“I saw you with a woman and a child earlier today. You seemed pretty close. I assume you need the private quarter for them.” Adama explained.
“Yes, they’re ...” Lee stammered. “They’re my wife and daughter. Uhm .... We’ve been married for almost two years. Shortly after Zak’s ....” He stopped and looked at his father.
Adama looked hurt, which was understandable considering. But what did he expect? That he would still include him in his life after what had happened? Suddenly the anger towards his father welled up in Lee again. Adama noticed how Lee tensed up.
“Lee ...” He tried to reach out to his son but was interrupted by Lee.
“I have to go. Thanks for the quarters, Commander.” He said coldly. Then he turned towards the open hatch.
But Adama wasn’t willing to let his son walk away just like that. After all, he had thought Lee was dead up until a few minutes ago. He needed to feel his son close to him. Slowly he grabbed Lee at his shoulder and pulled him close to him in a tight embrace. Lee was taken by surprise at first and stood frozen while his father embraced him. But after a few seconds, he put his arms around his father too. Despite everything, it felt good to be hold by his father this way.
Adama noticed relieved how Lee responded to the embrace and that some of the tension that had built up in him seemed to have gone. He didn’t want to let loose of Lee but he also knew that they couldn’t stay like this forever. So eventually, he forced himself to release Lee out of the embrace. His son looked at him puzzled for a moment before he finally stepped out into the corridor without saying another word.
After he had left his fathers quarters he went straight to the mess hall where he had left his family. When he found them, Nia was asleep in her mother’s arms.
“Hey.” He said quietly as he sat himself next to them. He gave his wife a long, deep kiss.
“Hey.” She replied. She took Lee’s hand in hers and looked at him thoughtfully while he watched Nia sleeping peacefully. Alicia could sense the emotional turmoil he was in but decided to wait until he told her from himself what was bothering him.
“What is going to happen now?” She asked anxiously after a while.
“I’m not sure. But we will stay on the Galactica. I managed to get a private quarter for us.” He told her without taking his eyes of his daughter.
“And then? Lee, what are we going to do now?” She asked, desperation clearly audible in her voice. She held on to her daughter more tightly for a second.
“I don’t know, Ali. We just have to wait for now.” He sighed frustrated. He hated the fact that he couldn’t tell her anything more comforting. He wanted to tell her that everything would be all right again. But he couldn’t lie to her. She had always been able to tell his lies. And he had no idea what they were going to do next. The colonies were destroyed. There was no way back. They had nowhere to go.
“There is a meeting in a few minutes. We will know more after that.” He knew he sounded lame but right now, it was all he could give her.
“You have to leave again already? You just got here.” She said in a pained voice, tears glistening in her eyes.
He sighed again before giving her one of these smiles that had made her fall in love with him.
“They made me CAG. I have to attend to all the boring meetings from now on.” He said jokingly in an attempt to lighten up the situation a bit.
At least that made her smile slightly. Then she raised her hand and gently stroked his face. “I love you.” She whispered.
“I love you too.” He said before he gently pulled her close to him again, careful not to wake his sleeping daughter. They kissed long and deep and hold onto each other tightly, not willing to let go of the other. They stayed like this for some time.
“Captain Adama, please report to CIC. Captain Adama, please report to CIC.” The PA speaker interrupted this intimate moment between them.
“Frak!” He sighed. “I have to go. There is a Marine waiting outside. He’ll show you your quarter. I don’t know when I can join you ...” He searched for the right words. He couldn’t find any.
“I love you.” She said again. He kissed her one last time before he quickly got up and left the mess hall. As he stepped out into the corridor, he asked the waiting marine to bring his family to their new quarters.
An hour later Lee stood in font of Kara’s Viper. She was already in the cockpit.
“You understand the mission?” he asked her.
Kara rolled her eyes at that. “Put my head outside the storm and look around. Listen for wireless traffic. Come home.” She said smugly. They had already gone through this before.
“No heroics, this is strictly recon. Look, listen, return.” Lee told her again. He wished he could get out there with her.
“You don’t have to worry about me, my taste for heroics vanished about the time I engaged that first Cylon fighter.” She told him.
Lee wanted to say something but couldn’t find the right words. So instead, he simply nodded at her and turned around to leave.
Kara looked down for a second and braced herself. She had to tell him now before her courage would leave her again.
“Lee” She called out. He turned around again and looked at her questioningly.
“Zak failed basic flight.” She said quietly. The guilt was written all over her face. She couldn’t stand to look Lee in the eye.
“What?” Lee asked confused.
“Or at least he should have but he didn’t.” Kara forced herself to look back at Lee. “Because I passed him. His technique was sloppy and he had no feel for flying but I passed him. Because he and I ... Because I felt something and I let it get in the way of doing my job. And I couldn’t fail him.”
Lee stared at her with a confused and hurt look in his eyes. “Why ... Why are you telling me this ... Why ... Why now?” He asked in a pained voice.
“It’s the end of the world, Lee. I thought I should confess my sins.” Kara waited for him to respond to that. To scream at her, condemn her, anything. But he just stood there, frozen in his tracks and stared at her. She could see the pain and anger in his eyes. She felt disgusted with herself. She couldn’t look at Lee any longer. So she put on her helmet and quickly pulled her canopy closed.
Kara tried to clear her mind and concentrate on her mission. But she could still see Lee’s blue eyes that looked at her with so much pain, hurt, and confusion. She knew it was the right decision. She had to tell him. He was all the Old man had left. And they both deserved to have a real father-son-relationship again. She had prevented that for too long with her silence.
“Starbuck, Galactica. You should be approaching turn eight.” She heard over the comm.
“Copy that! Starting to lose wireless contact . Making the final cut now.” She tried again to concentrate on the mission at hand and to shut Lee and everything else out for the moment. “Galactica, Starbuck. I’ve reached the threshold.” She got nothing but static as response. “Galactica, do you read me? ... Galactica, do you read me?” Great. She finally found the strength to concentrate on her work and now, without any radio transmission, she was all alone again with her thoughts. Thoughts of deep blue eyes that looked at her in pain. Suddenly she noticed her Dradis flicker. Shocked she looked at the multiple signs that appeared on her radar.
“That can’t be right.” She said aloud. When Starbuck looked up, she could see a Cylon Basestar just outside the electric storm. It was already flooding out hundreds of Raiders. The Cylons had found them.
At the same time, Commander Adama stepped into a conference room. The president had asked to see him there. He found her talking to her assistant, Billy Keikeya.
“Hello Commander, have a seat. I’ll be with you in a minute.” Roslin acknowledged his presence, giving him a polite smile before turning back to her assistant.
Adama listened to them impatiently for a while. Billy apparently gave her an update on the fleet status. The young man looked nervously at the Commander from time to time.
He really had better things to do than listening to this, Adama thought slightly annoyed. After a few minutes, they were done and Billy left the room. With an inquisitive expression, Roslin turned to Adama.
“Are you planning to stage a military coup?” She asked directly.
“What?” Adama looked at her in surprise.
“Do you plan to declare martial law? Take over the government?” Roslin clarified her question. She tried desperately not to show her nervousness. If Adama really planned something like that then there was nothing she could do to stop him.
“Of course not.” He replied angrily. What kind of man did she think he was? Then he remembered how he had called her a schoolteacher only hours earlier. Maybe her question wasn’t as unfounded as he had first thought.
“Then you do acknowledge my position as president as duly constituted under the Articles of Colonisation?” Roslin sternly looked at him.
“Ms. Roslin. My primary objective at the present time is to repair the Galactica and continue to fight.” Adama had voluntarily not used her title as President of the 12 colonies. He wanted to make clear that he was not willing to give in to her.
“What we do know at his moment is that there are 50.000 civilian refugees out there who don’t stand a chance without your ship to protect them. Among them your own granddaughter and your son’s wife.” Roslin tried to reason with Adama.
“We’re aware of the tactical situation and I’m sure that you’ll all be safe here on Ragnar after we leave.” Adama replied annoyed. How could she dare to bring his family into this.
“After you leave?” Roslin asked puzzled. Then she cleared her throat. “ Where are you going?”
“To find the enemy. We’re at war. That’s my mission.” Adama stated.
Roslin couldn’t believe what she was hearing. The Commander seemed to be as stubborn and blind to reality as Colonel Tigh, she thought annoyed. “I honestly don’t know why I have to keep telling you this but the war is over.” She calmly said.
“It hasn’t begun yet.” Adama replied. What did she knew about military decisions and tactics, he thought angry. She’s a frakking schoolteacher, for gods sake.
“That’s insane.” Roslin said quietly.
“You would rather that we run?” Adama asked raising an eyebrow. He would rather die than run from the enemy.
“Yes, absolutely. That is the only sane thing to do here. Exactly that: run. We leave this solar system and we don’t look back.” She felt shivers run down her spine at the thought of this. But really what other choice did they have?
“And we go where?” Adama thought she had gone completely crazy. There was nowhere else to go. And they couldn’t survive on these ships forever.
“I don’t know. Another star system? Another planet? Somewhere where the Cylons won’t find us.” She wished she could give him a better answer. But the truth was that she had no idea where they could go. She just knew that they couldn’t stay here and they couldn’t go back
“You can run if you’d like, this ship will stand and it will fight.” Adama said determined.
Roslin let out a frustrated sigh. “I’m gonna be straight with you here. The human race is about to be wiped out. We have 50.000 people left and that’s it. Now, if we are even going to survive as a species then we need to get the hell out of here and we need to start having babies!” Roslin glared at Adama and willed him to understand that there was nothing else to fight for except the people left here on Ragnar.
But Adama just shot her an angry look and got up. He excused himself and left the room without another word. Roslin sighed. Adama would run into his death if he didn’t change his mind. And he would take the last survivors of humanity down with him.
Lee stood in CIC listening to Starbuck’s incoming transmission.
“I didn’t get an accurate account but it looks like two basestars with 10 fighter squadrons and two recon drone attachments patrolling the area.”
“Starbuck, were you followed?” Tigh wanted to know.
“Negative, no sign of pursuit. By the way they were deployed, I’d say they’re waiting for us to come to them.” She reported.
“Bring her home.” Adama ordered.
Lee felt relieved Starbuck would finally be returning to Galactica. He still struggled with his feelings. He should be angry at her, furious actually. She had just confessed to him that she was responsible for his brother’s death. Until now, he had always blamed his father. He hadn’t spoken to him for two years. He had screamed at him at Zak’s funeral. And know he found out that it never was his father. It was Kara. She had put Zak in the plane that got him killed. But he didn’t feel angry towards her. He didn’t feel the urge to scream at her, to hurt her. He just wanted her back safe.
“Captain.” Adama said and waved Lee to follow him. He went to a nearby console in front of a star map. “Lt. Gaeta, stay please.” He said as the young man had turned to leave.
The four of them, Apollo, Adama, Tigh and Gaeta, started discussing what their next step would be.
“How the hell did they find us?” Tigh asked angry. As if it wasn’t enough that they had just identified Aaron Doral as a Cylon spy thanks to Dr. Baltar, now the whole frakking Cylon fleet seemed to be waiting for them out there.
“Doesn’t really matter, they’ve got us.” Adama replied calmly.
“Why aren’t they coming for us, Sir?” Gaeta wanted to know. He wondered why the Cylons hadn’t attacked them when they already knew where they were.
“Why should they? They can just sit out there and wait us out. What difference does it make to them? They’re machines, we’re the ones that need food and medicine and fuel.” Tigh replied frustrated. He wished they could just go out there and fight.
“I’m not going to play their game. I’m not going to go out there and try to fight them. Can we plot a jump from inside the storm?” Adama obviously had other plans. He had had enough time to think about Roslin’s words. Even though he couldn’t admit it, he knew she was right. If they wanted to survive, they had to run away.
Tigh looked at him with a shocked expression. Adama wasn’t really considering just giving up? And a jump out of this storm? “With all this EM interference mocking up the FTL fix?” He called out.
“I tend to agree, Sir. I don’t think we should even attempt to jump till we’ve cleared the storm threshold.” Gaeta said uncomfortably.
“We have to be quick about it though. They’ll launch everything they have first glimpse they get.” Apollo cut in for the first time.
“Stick our nose out just far enough to get a good FTL fix, then jump?” Tigh asked doubtful.
“And what about the Civilians?” Apollo asked. He didn’t want to just leave them behind. He knew the president was right. There was no sense in further fighting. The war was lost.
Tigh shot him an annoyed look. “Ahh, they’re probably safe for the time being.” They had more important things to think about.
“You mean leave them here?” Apollo felt taken aback. Those were probably the last survivors of their race. 50.000 people. They couldn’t just leave them here to die. He glared at Tigh in disbelief.
“The Cylons may not even know they’re here in the first place. They’re probably only after us.” Gaeta said hesitantly.
“Now that’s one hell of an assumption.” Apollo replied angry.
“Well, we can’t very well cram 50.000 men, women and children aboard this ship.” Tigh stated dryly.
“I’m not suggesting that, Sir. I’m just saying we can’t leave them behind. They should jump with us.” Apollo explained. He couldn’t understand how they could throw away 50.000 lives so easily.
“I just don’t see how we can manage that without jeopardising our ship.” Gaeta said.
“We pick a jump spot far enough outside the combat zone ...” Apollo began but was immediately interrupted by an angry Tigh.
“What the hell is outside the combat zone at this point?”
“They better start having babies.” Adama suddenly said quietly. For the last few minutes he had watched Billy Keikeya talking intimately to Dee. They seemed to have become very close in this short time. He reflected Roslin’s last words and he realized she was right. He looked back at the three men in front of him staring at him in astonishment.
“Is that an order?” Tigh asked confused, following Adamas gaze towards Dee and Billy.
“Maybe before too long ... Okay, we’re going to take the civilians with us. We’re going to leave this solar system and we’re not going to come back.” It hurt more then he had thought to say these words aloud.
“We’re running?” Tigh called out shocked.
Adama looked sadly at his old friend. “This war is over. We lost.”
“My father is right. It’s time for us to get out of here.” Lee looked at his father and gave him a small smile.
Adama looked surprised at his son. He had just called him his father again. Something had clearly changed in his son’s demeanour towards him. He didn’t know why but he was grateful for it. He smiled back at his son.
“So where are we going, Commander?” Tigh asked frustrated. He didn’t like the idea of running away.
“The Pro Mar sector.” Adama answered.
“That’s way past the red line.” Tigh called out surprised.
“Can you plot the jump?” Adama ignored Tigh for the moment and turned directly to Gaeta.
“I’ve never plotted a jump that far, Sir.” Gaeta replied doubtful.
“No one has. Can you plot the jump?” Adama asked again.
Gaeta thought about that for a moment then he looked determined at his Commander. “Yes Sir.”
“Do it. By yourself.” Adama ordered.
Gaeta nodded shortly then left to do his job. Adama turned back to Tigh and Apollo.
“This is a bad tactical position. We’ll pull the Galactica out, 5 clicks. The civilians will come out behind us, cross the threshold, make the jump, while we hold off the Cylons. Once the civilians have made the jump, every fighter is to make an immediate combat landing, we don’t have much time.” Adama explained his plan.
“I’ll tell them.” Apollo said.
“I want all my pilots to return. Do you understand?” Adama glared at his son. He couldn’t lose him again.
Apollo looked slightly surprised at his father. “Yes Sir, I do.” He replied quietly. He gave his father another small smile before he left CIC.
“So, can I ask what changed your mind?” Tigh asked thoughtfully.
“You can ask.” Adama replied.
Tigh had to smile at that. “So, what do we do about our prisoner?” He turned to the next problem.
After Lee had informed the President of the Commander’s plan he went to see his family. Even though he had told his father that all pilots would be coming back alive he knew he might not be able to keep that promise. And he wanted to see his wife and daughter one last time. He only had a few minutes before the pilots briefing so he had to make this quick. When he reached his new quarter he hesitated a moment. He didn’t want to worry his wife any more than necessary so he tried to put on a careless expression. When he finally stepped into the room he found his daughter giggling at her mother. He had to smile at that.
“Hey. You two seem to have quite a good time.” He called out to them.
“Daddy.” Nia looked happy at her father.
He sat himself next to her and pulled her onto his lap. Then he looked over to his wife.
“Hey.” She greeted him with a warm smile. She could see through his fake expression immediately. They sat in silence for some time, interrupted only by Nia’s laughter every now and then. She had grabbed Lee’s dog tags and started to play with it.
“So, what’s going to happen now?” Alicia finally asked. She wasn’t sure she even wanted to know.
Lee sighed. He couldn’t put it off any longer. He told her about Adama’s plan and that they would all jump away to safety. At least they hoped it would be safe.
Alicia looked at him intensely for a moment. “And you will be flying in one of the Vipers holding of the Cylons?” She finally asked quietly.
“Hhm, yeah, I’m a Viper pilot after all.” He tried to give her an encouraging smile. He wanted to tell her not to worry but he couldn’t. He couldn’t promise her that he would come back alive from this. He looked down on his daughter again.
“You look tired. Does your head still hurt?” Alicia looked worried at his pale face. “I could at least get you something to eat before you leave. You could try to sleep a bit till I get back.” Hopefully she looked up at him. She didn’t want him to leave so soon again.
“I don’t have time for this. I only have a few minutes.” It broke his heart to say this while she looked at him so vulnerable.
She swallowed and tried to force the tears down that were welling up in her eyes. “I love you.” She whispered.
“ I love you. Always.” He moved closer to her and gave her a long, deep kiss. Then he looked down at his daughter. “You take care of your mom until I get back, ok?” She just laughed at him with her big eyes. “I love you pumpkin.” Now he was the one who had to force down the tears. He took a deep breath. Then he gave Nia back to Alicia and quickly got up to leave the room.
“Come back safe.” Alicia called after him. He didn’t turn around at the hatch. He couldn’t. But he promised himself that he would do anything in his power to return to his family.
The pilot briefing didn’t take very long. It had hurt to see so many empty seats. Lee remembered that just this morning before the ceremony it had been full with pilots. Just this morning. His whole life – everyone’s life – had changed dramatically in the hours that had passed since then. It was still difficult to really comprehend all this.
Kara was the last pilot to leave. Hesitantly Lee called out for her to wait.
Slowly Kara turned around to him. She looked at him, slightly afraid of what would happen now and braced herself for whatever he would slap in her face. She would deserve it.
“Be careful out there.” Lee quietly told her. “No heroics, ok?”
She looked at him surprised. She hadn’t expected that. “No heroics, I promise. I told you my taste for that is gone.” She gave him a small smile.
“Good. Make sure you come back in one piece, alright? That’s an order, Lieutenant.” He said while looking intensely at her.
“Understood, Captain.” She replied.
“Okay then. Dismissed.” He looked down at some papers in his hands, pretending to read them. He didn’t really know what they said since all he could think of was that he might never see Kara again after this battle.
Kara stared at him for a second. She didn’t know what to make of this. Why wasn’t he angry with her? She shook her head slightly. She would have to figure that out later. Now she had other things to worry about like getting out alive from this upcoming battle with the Cylons. She had promised Lee she would come back and she wouldn’t let him down again. And when she still had time she would make sure that he would make it back alive too.
Before she left the room she turned around to Lee again.
“Lee, these last two years ... Did you miss me?” She asked hesitantly.
He looked up at her and gave her one of his famous smiles. “Every second.”
Relieved she smiled back at him. “Just checking ...” Then she turned around and finally left the briefing room.
The fight against the Cylons had been going on for quiet some time already. And it didn’t look good for the Colonials. So far they had managed to protect the civilian ships and already most of them had made the jump successfully. But the Cylons shot down the Vipers faster then one could count. They had already lost too many pilots and Galactica had taken some serious hits. Apollo didn’t think they could hold on much longer.
Suddenly he was hit by an enemy missile. He had been so busy targeting the Raider in front of him he hadn’t even seen it coming. It tore off his left wing and his Viper hurled around out of control.
“Apollo, do you read me?” Starbuck called out in a worried voice over the comm.
Apollo didn’t have time to respond as he was trying to get his Viper back under control. When he saw a Raider coming toward him he starting firing and shot him down. Suddenly he saw another missile coming directly in his direction. In horror he stared at the approaching warhead, bracing himself for the impact. But in the last second Starbuck’s Viper showed up before him and she destroyed the missile.
“Whhoooo! Come on boys! Ha, ha!” Apollo could hear Starbuck laughing over the comm. “Looks like you broke your ship, Apollo.”
He had to chuckle at that, despite the situation he was in. “I’ve had worse. But thanks.”
A few minutes later the last civilian ship had jumped away and the Vipers where called back to Galactica. But Apollo still had trouble getting his Viper fully back under control when all of a sudden he was starting to loose power.
“Frak” He called out frustrated while he tried to figure out what the problem was.
Starbuck could clearly see that Apollo was in trouble. Desperately she tried to defend him against the approaching Raiders.
On Galactica, Adama nervously waited for all vipers to return. When he saw that only Starbuck and Apollo were still out and that they weren’t approaching Galactica he knew something was wrong. Anxiously he grabbed a microphone and called out to Starbuck.
“What do you hear? ... Starbuck, Galactica! What do you hear?”
“What?” Starbuck shouted in her comm. She could hardly understand what Adama was saying. There was too much static interrupting the transmission.
“Morning Starbuck. What do you hear?” This time she could clearly understand Adama’s words. She laughed aloud.
“Nothing but the rain!” She replied grinning.
“Then grab the gun and bring the cat in.” Adama ordered.
“Aye, aye, Sir! Coming home.” She knew exactly what Adama wanted her to do. And she was right with him. She wasn’t going to leave Lee behind. She just didn’t know quite yet how to get him back to Galactica. But she would find a way.
“I’m losing power. I’m not going to make it, Starbuck. It’s over. Just leave. Damn it! That’s an order!!!” Apollo shouted over the comm when he noticed Starbuck didn’t pull back towards Galactica. By this time he was already floating around in space helpless.
“Lee, shut up and hold still!” Starbuck suddenly knew how she would get them both back. She turned her viper and flew directly in Lee’s direction.
“Ahhhggghhh!” She screamed over the comm.
Apollo looked shocked at the oncoming Viper. “Oh no!” He mumbled to himself before the nose of Starbuck’s viper pushed right into the left wing of his own viper.
“You are beyond insane!” He screamed at her.
“Kickin’ in the burn.” Starbuck yelled laughingly while she pushed Apollo’s Viper towards Galactica.
“We’re coming in a little hot, don’t you think?” He asked worried while he sat helpless in his Viper.
“No .... Not really.” Starbuck replied. Her voice didn’t sound too convincing though. She tried hard to get the vipers to slow down but it wasn’t easy.
“Hang on!!” She screamed as they approached the flight deck.
As soon as the Vipers hit the flight deck Starbuck lost control over them. She could do nothing but watch in horror while they slid over the floor. They finally came to a sudden stop when they crashed into the back wall. Terrified Starbuck saw that Apollo’s Viper was almost smashed between her Viper and the wall.
“Lee, are you alright?” She practically screamed over the comm. She got no reply. “Lee!” She yelled again while she tried to get out of her Viper. Her canopy was jammed so it took her a while before she could climb out. By the time she got out of her Viper the flight crew under Chief Tyrol had made their way to the crashed Vipers. After seeing that Starbuck seemed to be alright Tyrol went straight to Apollo. Kara could hardly see into his cockpit as the canopy was covered with cracks. When Tyrol finally managed to get the canopy open she could see that Lee wasn’t moving. His head hang down to one side and his helmet looked battered on one side.
‘No, no, no, don’t be dead. Oh Gods, no, please no.” Kara thought terrified. She couldn’t bear to lose him again. She just got him back.
But suddenly Lee began to stir. He groaned slightly and his eyes fluttered open slowly. Tyrol helped him carefully to remove his battered helmet.
“Are you alright, Sir?” He asked worried as he saw a bad looking bruise on Apollo’s forehead.
“Yeah, I think I am.” He replied weakly despite the stabbing pain in his head. He had thought his headache was bad before but now it was almost killing him. Carefully he tried to get out of his Viper. But the minute he stood he was hit by a wave of dizziness and nausea. All colour seemed to drain from his already pale face and he tumbled to the side. Kara and Tyrol quickly grabbed him before he fell to the floor.
“I better call a medic, Sir.” Tyrol said even more worried.
“No, don’t. It’s ok. I just need a min...” All of a sudden Lee’s eyes rolled up into his head and he collapsed to the floor.
“We need a medic her. Now!” Tyrol screamed.
“Lee, Lee, can you hear me? Wake up, please.” Kara pleaded, kneeling right beside him. “Lee? Oh gods, please don’t die.” Kara whispered while tears were rolling down her face. She didn’t care anymore if anyone saw the great Starbuck crying. All she could think of was Lee.
When the medics arrived they carefully put Lee on a stretcher and then rushed him down to sickbay. Kara never left Lee’s side until they finally reached sickbay. Lee was brought into an examining room and Kara was told to wait outside. Exhausted she sagged onto a nearby chair and prayed to the gods that Lee would be alright.
“You should get that looked after, Lieutenant.” A nurse had approached Kara and showed at her arm. Confused Kara looked down and noticed a pretty bad looking scratch. She hadn’t even noticed she was bleeding.
“I’m fine.” She said, still staring at her arm.
“This might have to get sewed up. I’ll send a doctor to you.” The nurse insisted. Before Kara could contradict her, the nurse had left.
An hour later Kara found herself back in the waiting room. Her arm hadn’t needed sewing after all and had just been plastered up. Now she was waiting for any news on her friend. After another hour or so – Kara had already lost track of time - a nurse came to her and told her that Lee was going to be all right and that she could see him now. She didn’t tell her what was wrong with him though. Kara would have to talk to the doctor about that, but since she wasn’t related to him he would probably not tell her anything.
‘Frak that’ Kara thought. ‘I’ll find out soon enough’.
When she approached the bed Lee was lying in she saw that he still wasn’t awake. Worried she looked at a nearby nurse.
“He’s just sleeping. He’s pretty exhausted. Nothing to worry about.” The nurse assured her.
“Thanks.” Kara replied gratefully and relieved. She had been afraid he had fallen into a coma or something. But then again the other nurse had told her Lee would be all right so there was really no reason for her to be worried. But seeing Lee so weak was just not something Kara was used to. Lee had always been the strong one, he was always there to comfort or help her. Now it was on her to comfort him. She took his hand in hers and gave it a gentle squeeze. Suddenly he stirred and slowly opened his eyes. He winced shortly at the bright light surrounding him. It hurt his eyes.
“Hey.” Kara whispered relieved to see him awake.
“Hey.” He replied weakly, giving her a small smile.
“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to wake you.”
“How long have I been gone out?” He asked in a small voice.
“Not long. They just brought you here a few hours ago.” Kara told him quietly.
He sighed and closed his eyes again. “Sorry, I’m just so tired.” He said sleepy.
“It’s alright. Get back to sleep. You need to rest.” She assured him.
“Please don’t go.” He murmured, hardly audible anymore.
“Don’t worry. I’ll stay here as long as you need me.” She whispered softly into his ear.
Kara had been sitting next to Lee for a while, gently holding his hand, watching him sleep peacefully, when suddenly a familiar voice interrupted the silence around her.
“How is he doing?” Commander Adama asked quietly.
Kara didn’t need to turn around to know who was standing behind her. She didn’t take her eyes of Lee.
“You tell me. I’m not family so they don’t tell me much. But he woke up some time ago for a little bit. He seemed alright.” Kara assured him.
Adama looked worried at his sleeping son. When Dr. Cottle saw the Commander standing next to Captain Adama’s bed he slowly walked over to let the worried father know about his sons condition.
“Commander.” Cottle nodded at Adama.
“Dr. Cottle. How is he doing?” Adama asked.
“He has a bad concussion. From what I can say the injure is about 10 to 15 hours old. Since his condition wasn’t treated right away it got worse than it originally was. But he should be fine in a few days.” Cottle explained.
“But the crash wasn’t even three hours ago. And he was brought to sickbay right away.” Kara said confused.
“Well, then he didn’t get the injure from that crash, just this bruise on his head, but that’s nothing to worry about.” Cottle stated dryly. “Even though the crash could have worsened the concussion. It sure wasn’t helpful. Any more accidents I should know about?” He looked questioningly at Kara and the Commander.
“He just returned to Galactica a few hours ago. He seemed fine then. Maybe a bit pale but under the circumstances I didn’t pay much attention to that.” Adama answered. He felt slightly guilty that he hadn’t noticed that his son had been in pain. Then he remembered what Tigh had told him about how Lee had managed to survive the Cylon attack on Colonial 1. ”He had been very close to a pulse of electromagnetic energy. He practically stood directly next to it. Could that have caused the concussion?”
“Yes, that could very well be the reason. Tell the Captain to stay away from any such pulses in the future when he wakes up.” With that said Cottle turned around and went back to his office.
Adama looked at his still sleeping son for some time before he turned back to Kara. “I need to get back to CIC. Could you let his wife know of what happened? I don’t think she has been informed yet. I just found out myself.”
Gods, his wife. Kara had completely forgotten about her. “Of course.” She pressed out.
“And let me know if he wakes up.” Adama looked down at his son again.
“Of course.” She repeated. This time she even managed to smile at him.
“Thanks.” Adama replied. Then he told her where to find Lee’s family and turned around to leave sickbay.
Kara stood frozen beside Lee’s bed. His wife. She didn’t even know her name. What was she supposed to call her? Mrs. Adama? Somehow that sounded weird, like she would talk to his mother. She closed her eyes for a few seconds and took some deep breaths. Then she cast one last look at Lee and slowly left sickbay herself.
She didn’t like leaving him alone. After all she had promised him so stay with him. But the Commander was right. His wife should know what happened to Lee. She should be the one sitting by his bedside. And she deserved to learn about Lee’s injuries from someone that was at least friends with Lee and not some total stranger.
A few minutes later Kara stood before the hatch to Lee’s private quarter. All she had to do was knock and his wife would be standing in front of her. Lee’s wife. She still couldn’t imagine him being married. Being a father. The last two years she had pictured him flying his viper and working hard as he had always done. He would go on dates from time to time, sure, but getting married? That thought hadn’t even crossed her mind. And now she was standing in front of the hatch to his new private quarter and was about to meet his wife. After waiting a few more seconds Kara finally decided to knock. There really wasn’t much sense in putting this of any further. And she couldn’t stand in this corridor all night. She took another deep breath and knocked.
She only had to wait a few seconds before the hatch opened. When Kara finally stood directly before Lee’s wife she could just look at her in shock. She knew this woman. She had met her before. She and Zak had gone out with Lee and her a few times. And she was the one Lee had fallen in love with so deeply that he wanted to spent the rest of his life with her?
‘Frak, what was her name?’ Kara thought as she continued staring at the woman in front of her.
“Kara?” Alicia looked surprised at her unsuspected visitor.
“Uh, hey, uhm ...” Kara stammered. She had no idea why talking to this woman suddenly made her so nervous. ‘Ok, calm down!’ She told herself. ‘This really isn’t very difficult. You just survived a frakking battle with the Cylons, this should be easy going compared to that.’ Kara suddenly wished she could be in her viper again. Angry at herself she inhaled a harsh breath and braced herself to start explaining why she was here.
“Where’s Lee? Has something happened?” Alicia asked worried before Kara could start to talk.
“Um, yeah, kinda, I mean ... uhm ...” Gods, what was wrong with her!!! She took another deep breath and finally started to explain quickly what happened. She only told the small details. That there had been an accident when Lee got back to Galactica.. That he was in sickbay but that his injuries weren’t too bad. That he had a concussion, which was apparently already a few hours old and just got worse because of this accident but that he was out of danger.
Alicia looked at her in shock, then she quickly went to the back of the room, grabbed her daughter and stepped out into the corridor.
“Show me the way to sickbay, please!” She practically ordered Kara.
“Uhm, yeah, sure, just follow me.” Kara replied and together they walked towards sickbay. On their way Kara glanced at the girl in Alicia’s arms. She looked so much like Lee. The same blue eyes. When Nia noticed that Kara was watching her she happily smiled at her. Kara immediately fell in love with the little girl. She had exactly the same smile Lee had.
When they reached sickbay Kara showed Alicia where she could find Lee, then she stepped back. She didn’t want to interrupt this reunion.
When Lee woke up a few hours later he found his wife and daughter waiting by his side.
“Daddy.” He was greeted by his laughing daughter who sat on his bedside. After seeing her father finally awake, she through herself right at him before her mother could stop her.
“Miss me?” Nia asked him, giving him one of her sweetest smiles she seemed to save only for her father.
“Every second.” He replied still a bit weak, smiling back at her.
Kara, still standing a few meters away, had to smile hearing this all too familiar exchange that she and Lee had originally came up with and had used practically every time they had been apart for more than a few hours. It had driven Zak crazy but they had kept saying it anyway. She liked the idea that Lee used their ritual with his daughter. Somehow it gave her the feeling that Lee hadn’t totally excluded her from his life these past two years.
“I thought you never wanted to wake up again.” Alicia softly said to her husband, giving him a warm smile before kissing him gently on the cheek.
“Are you alright?” Lee asked worried.
“We’re fine. Don’t worry. You’re the one in a hospital bed, remember?” Alicia let out a small laugh.
“Right.” They both smiled lovingly at each other.
Suddenly Kara felt like an intruder. She had promised Lee to stay with him but it was time now to leave him alone with his family. He didn’t need her. Slowly Kara turned around and slipped quietly out of sickbay.
On her way to her bunkroom Kara met Commander Adama.
“Good Morning, Commander. Lee just woke up, Sir.” She smiled at him happily.
“Good Morning, Starbuck. That’s good news. Thank you.” Adama replied smiling back.
“The Doc said he will probably be released tomorrow.” Kara told him.
“Right in time for the service then.”
“Service, Sir?” Kara asked confused.
“For the Dead, Lieutenant.” Adama replied quietly.
“Right.” Kara nodded slowly. She felt a big lump building up in her throat. So many of her friends had died and all she had thought about these last few hours had been Lee. She swallowed then nodded at the Commander and went on to her bunkroom.
“Lieutenant ...” Adama called after her. When she turned around again he continued. “Thank you for bringing my son back.”
Kara smiled at him. “Anytime, Sir.”
When Adama stepped into sickbay to visit his son he found him together with his wife and daughter. Adama stopped and watched them for a few minutes. Lee’s daughter – his granddaughter, Adama thought – was sitting on the bedside next to his father. She had an astounding resemblance with Lee. The same blue eyes and her smile was definitely Lee’s. He heard Lee laugh with his daughter. It made Adama comfortable and gave him a warm feeling around his heart to hear his son laugh and see him so happy.
“You seem to feel better already ...” Adama had finally decided to approach his son and walked a few steps closer until he stood next to Lee’s bed. He smiled at his son before turning to his daughter-in-law.
“Good Morning. I’m William Adama. I don’t think we have been officially introduced.” He said to Alicia. Albeit she had been to Zak’s funeral he didn’t speak with her that day. He had been so eager to get to know Kara, the woman Zak had wanted to marry, that he hadn’t noticed how close Alicia and Lee really had been.
“Good Morning. Alicia Adama. I’m glad we finally get to know each other.” She warmly smiled at him. Adama liked her immediately.
“So am I.” Adama smiled back at her. Then he looked down to his granddaughter who looked up at him curiously.
“That’s your grandpa, Nia.” Lee spoke up for the first time since his father had arrived. He looked up at his father smiling.
“Hello.” Adama hesitantly reached out his hand towards Nia.
“Hi.” Nia answered shyly in a tiny voice. She looked back and forth between her parents. When she saw them smiling she decided that she didn’t need to be afraid of this man in front of her and grabbed his hand.
“Nia.” She laughed at him.
“And I’m William. But you can call me grandpa.” Adama said with such a big grin on his face that Lee had to laugh. He seldom got to see this side of his father.
Hours after Kara had left Lee’s side she was finally finished with her work. She had helped on the hangar deck with the repairs on the Vipers. It had taken them all day and half the night to get all the damage repaired. It wasn’t perfect but at least the Vipers would fly again should the Cylons suddenly decide to show up again.
Kara felt exhausted, dirty and tired. She just wanted to curl up in her rack and leave these last two days behind her. But after leaving the hangar deck she decided she would see after Lee one more time. It was the middle of night so his wife and daughter were probably back in quarters. Right now she wanted – needed – Lee all to herself, even if he was asleep, which at this hour would probably be the case. She would be content to just sit next to him for a while and watch over his sleep.
When she arrived in sickbay she sneaked around the nurse that had the nightshift and towards the curtained area where Lee was. She closed the curtains quickly around his bed again so no one would notice her being here. She watched Lee for a moment, then she took his hand in hers and silently sat next to his bed. After a while Lee began to stir in his sleep but he didn’t wake up. Instead his head turned from one side to the other and he let out a small groan. It was evident to Kara that he was having a nightmare. Quickly she moved nearer to him and gently began stroking his cheek.
“It’s okay, Lee. You’re safe. It’s just a bad dream.” She silently whispered into his ear. “I’m here. It’s okay. You’re safe.” She continued to stroke him and soothed comforting words into his ear until he seemed to calm down. She decided then that she would stay with him for the night in case the nightmares came back. He needed his rest so he would recover soon. Kara felt like she had just searched for an excuse to stay with him but didn’t think any further about it. Instead she made herself as comfortable as possible in her chair and closed her eyes. A few minutes later she was deeply asleep. But she never let go of Lee’s hand.
When she woke up the next morning she found Lee was already awake.
“Good Morning, Sleepyhead.” He greeted her smiling.
“Morning.” She groaned, stretching her back. Sleeping on a chair the whole night wasn’t really very comfortable. “How’s your head?” She asked after a few moments.
“Better, hardly hurts at all.” He was clearly lying, she could see he was still in pain. But she didn’t comment on that. She knew he would want to leave sickbay as soon as possible.
‘To be with his family.’ She thought and wondered why that image kept bugging her so much.
“Have you been here all night?” Lee interrupted her thoughts.
“Uh, no, I was working until around midnight.” She said. Lee looked at her questioningly. Being evasive never really worked with him.
“Well, after that, yeah. You were having nightmares and I, uhm, you know ...” She stammered and looked down, not knowing what to say.
“Thanks.” He looked at her gratefully. He only remembered pits and pieces of what he had dreamt last night but it hadn’t been peaceful dreams.
When Kara looked up at him again she met his glistening blue eyes. They looked at each other for some time.
“Well, I should get going.” Kara finally said. “I still have tons of things to do and I really need a shower and hot coffee before I start.” She smiled at him before she got up and left sickbay.
On her way out she ran into Alicia and Nia.
“Oh, good morning, Kara. Have you been to see Lee? How is he?” Alicia warmly smiled at her.
“Uhm, better, he’s eager to leave sickbay.” Kara managed to smile back at the woman in front of her.
“He can’t wait to get back to work. That’s typical Lee.” Alicia laughed.
“Yeah, well, that’s Lee.” Kara pressed out a small laugh. “Hmm ... uhm, I gotta go.” She stammered before leaving quickly.
On her way to her bunkroom she thought back on her encounter with Alicia. She had looked fresh and clean while Kara herself was still covered in grease and sweat. But then again it had never mattered how good Kara had looked on the few occasions she had met Alicia. That woman had always looked a hundred times better. No wonder Lee had fallen in love with her. She was perfect, Kara thought bitter and wondered again why this made her feeling so bad. She should be happy for Lee. He deserved to have a family. But did he had to marry her of all people? Nice, beautiful, perfect Alicia? Kara groaned. Why was she thinking so much about this anyway?
Kara didn’t see Lee again until the service the next day. Everyone had assembled in front of the coffins of the 85 crewmembers killed that first day of war. As Kara looked around she saw Lee standing in the front row with Alicia and Nia next to him. He still looked a bit pale but other then that he seemed fine. She thought whether to join them or not but decided against it. This service would be hard enough. She didn’t need to stand next to Lee and his perfect wife. Kara let out a small groan. Again these weird thoughts. What was wrong with her? She noticed Boomer standing a few feet away from her and walked up to join her. They exchanged a few silent words before the service began. Leaving her thoughts of Lee behind Kara listened intently to the priestess’ words.
“With heavy hearts we lift up their bodies to you, oh Lords of Kobol, in the knowledge that you will take from them their burdens and give them life eternal. We also pray that you look down upon us now with mercy and with love. Just as you did upon our forefathers many years ago. Just as you led us from Kobol and found the 12 worlds. So now we hope and pray that you will lead us to a new home. Where we may begin life ... anew. So say we all.”
“So say we all.” Everyone quietly repeated her words but there was not much hope in them.
Commander Adama looked around himself and took a deep breath. They couldn’t survive this journey without hope for a better future. He stepped forward and called out lout and with a steady voice:
“So say we all.”
“So say we all.” Everyone again called out this time a bit louder.
Adama repeated this a few times until he was assured that he had everyone’s attention.
“Are those the lucky ones?” He called out, showing at the coffins behind him. “That’s what you’re thinking, isn’t it? We’re a long way from home. We’ve jumped well beyond the red line, into uncharted space. Limited supplies. Limited fuel. No allies. And now, no hope. Maybe it would have been better for us to have died quickly. Back on the colonies with our families. Instead of dying out here slowly ... in the emptiness of dark space. Where shall we go? What shall we do? Life here began out there. Those are the first words of the sacred scrolls. And they were told to us by the Lords of Kobol, many countless centuries ago. And they made it perfectly clear that we are not alone in this universe.” He turned around to the Priestess.
“Elosha, there’s a 13th colony of human kind, is there not?” He asked loudly.
“Yes. The scrolls tell us the 13th tribe left Kobol in the early days. They travelled far and made their home upon a planet called Earth ... which circled a distant and unknown star.” Elosha replied.
“It’s not unknown.” Adama turned back to the people listening anxiously to his words. “I know where it is. Earth ... The most guarded secret we have. The location is only known by the senior commanders of the fleet. And we dared not share it with the public. Not while there was a Cylon threat upon us. For now, we have a refuge to go to! A refuge that the Cylons know nothing about. It won’t be an easy journey. It’ll be long and arduous. But I promise you one thing. On the memory of those lying here before you ... We shall find it! And Earth will become our new home! So say we all.” He called out loud.
“So say we all.” This time there was hope clearly audible in everyone’s voice.
“Dismissed.” He said quietly.
Everyone around him broke out into cheering and people were hugging each other. He had given them back hope.
A few hours after the service President Roslin visited Adama in his quarters. After she took a seat she looked at him for a moment before she started to speak.
“Firstly, I suppose I should thank you for deciding to bring us on.”
Adama sighs. “Listen, you were right. I was wrong. Just leave it at that.” He really didn’t like to be wrong and he didn’t want to be reminded of it.
“Alright.” Roslin waited for a moment before she brought up the real reason for her visit. “There’s no Earth. You made it all up. President Adar and I once talked about the legends surrounding Earth. He knew nothing about a secret location regarding Earth and if the President knew nothing about it, what are the chances ... that you do?” She looked him directly in the eyes.
Adama looked straight back at her. “You’re right. There’s no Earth. It’s all a legend.” He replied calmly.
“Then why?” Roslin asked.
“Because it’s not enough to just live. You have to have something to live for. Let it be earth.” He explained his reasons. He hoped she would understand.
Roslin slowly got up and walked a few steps around the room before stopping in front of Adama, arms crossed. “They’ll never forgive you.” She said.
“Maybe, but in the meantime, I’ve giving all of us a fighting chance to survive. And isn’t that what you said was the most important thing? The survival of the human race?” He replied.
“Who else knows?” Roslin wanted to know.
“Not a soul.”
Roslin nodded slowly at this. “Alright. I’ll keep your secret. But I want something in return.” She said determined.
“I’m listening.” Adama was slightly worried about what was coming now.
“If this civilisation is going to function, it’s going to need a government. A civilian government run by the President of the Colonies.” She explained.
“So you’ll be in charge of the fleet. Military decisions stay with me.” He could live with this agreement. At least this way he didn’t have to burden himself with every little problem that would definitely occur within the fleet.
“Yes.” Roslin agreed.
“Well, then I’ll think about it. Madam President.” It was the first time he used her title as President of the Colonies. Then he held out his hand for her to take. And with a handshake the deal was made.
“Oh, one more thing, Commander.” She smiled warmly at him before leaving his quarter. “You have a very sweet, adorable little girl as your granddaughter.”
Adama tried to hide the big grin that was starting to show on his face. “That I have indeed.” He told her proudly.
Roslin smiled at him one more time before she left.
It was already late at night when Adama went back to his quarters. On his way he ran into his son and asked him to accompany him. He still had some things to discuss with him regarding the Air Group.
“And tomorrow I’ll begin a formal Combat Patrol around the fleet.” Lee told his father as they finally reached the hatch to Adama’s quarters.
“Good.” He looked at his son. He suddenly noticed how exhausted and tired Lee looked. He was angry at himself from keeping his son busy for so long. After all he was still recovering from a pretty severe injure. This could have easily waited until morning. Lee was probably looking forward to finally getting back to his family “Have a good night.” He quietly told his son.
But Lee seemed reluctant to leave. He looked at his father in an almost desperate way. “I just ...” He started but was interrupted by Adama.
“Why don’t we save this for some other time, son.” Adama said calmly. He knew what was on Lee’s mind. But this would going to be a long talk and there was always time for that later. Lee really needed his rest now.
Lee was slightly taken aback. He had wanted to apologize to his father and he just sent him away. Alright, if his father was content to just have a simple Commander/CAG relationship he could give him that.
“Good night, Commander.” He said quietly.
“Good Night, Captain.” Adama replied. Then he stepped through the hatch into his quarters. He had noticed his son’s uneasiness and hoped that Lee understood his reason for delaying this conversation. Suddenly he noticed a folded paper on his desk. Puzzled he picked it up. As he unfolded it, he could read what it said:
‘There are only 12 Cylon models.’
"Apollo, wake up!“
Lee startled from his sleep. His eyes flew open and his head jerked up quickly. When his eyes had accustomed to the light around him he could see Starbuck standing right in front of him, arms crossed.
“I’m awake.” He said in a still sleepy voice. He ran his hands through his hair and rubbed his eyes tiredly. Then he checked his watch. “Frak.”
“Right. Come on, we launch in 5 Minutes.” Starbuck told him.
Apollo quickly got out of his chair when his eyes fell on the papers in front of him. “Frak, I didn’t finish the report.”
“That will just have to wait for the next cycle. Now come on!” Starbuck said impatiently, then she turned around and left his office.
Apollo glanced one last time at the papers on his desk before he quickly followed her out.
A few minutes later he sat in his Viper outside Galactica watching the clock intently.
“And one minute to mark.” He told the other pilots who had launched with him to protect the fleet from the Cylons who would surely appear the next minute. Exactly like they had the last 236 times before. Every 33 minutes. He desperately tried to stay awake. He had barely closed his eyes for more then five minutes these last five days. And the Cylons just kept coming and coming, no matter what they did. He had no idea how they could find them every time. He assumed there must be more Cylon spies in the fleet. Or they were tracking one of the ships.
“Hey Apollo, what number is this, did we pass 200 yet?” Starbuck asked over the comm.
“Try 237.” Apollo replied.
Kara chuckled. “You’re telling me I missed 200?”
“That’s exactly what I’m telling you.” Apollo had to smile. He could practically hear her grin over the comm. “What? Where you planning something special?”
“No, I just like to keep track of things like this. I mean, 200 was just a nice round number and now I’m gonna have to wait for 300.” Starbuck replied grinning.
“Don’t even joke about it.”
Suddenly his clock started to beep. Another 33 minutes had passed. And the Cylons were right on time. A Basestar appeared and immediately launched his Raiders towards Galactica and the waiting Vipers.
“All right, you know the drill, people. Scatter formation. Keep them off the civvies and don’t stray beyond the recovery line!” Apollo ordered the pilots.
A few minutes and one fierce battle later all civilian ships had jumped away and the Vipers were called back to Galactica.
“Combat landings.” Apollo called out.
They were getting slower. More and more ships were reporting troubles with their FTL-Drives. The Galactica had already taken some hits before all Vipers had landed safely. Fortunately they were able to jump away before the first Cylon Raider had reached the Galactica and further damage had been prevented.
“Jump 237 complete.” Gaeta reported.
“All civilian ships present and accounted for, Sir.” Dualla said like she had done 236 times before. So far they hadn’t lost one ship. She hoped it would stay like this until they had found a way to finally escape the Cylons.
“Start the clock. And let’s start prepping for the next jump.” Tigh ordered.
All three looked like they could hardly keep their eyes open. Gaeta picked up the microphone. “Clock is running. 33 minutes ... mark.” He announced fleet wide.
“You’ve got 32 minutes, people.” Apollo could hear Chief Tyrol call out to his crew. Tired he stayed in his Viper for a few moments longer than necessary. He finally forced himself to get out. He was afraid he would fall asleep again. And he really didn’t have the time for that. There was the pilots briefing, then he had his reports to finish, look after his family and if there was still time he should get something to eat. The last time he ate something was about 24 hours ago.
Kara accompanied him on his way to the briefing room.
“Did you hear that the Cylons look like us now?” She asked. She figured if she just kept talking she would at least not fall asleep.
But Lee just kept walking next to her without saying a word.
“Oh come on, you can tell me. It’s not fair that only superior officers get informed of this. We all deserve to know. And I bet you told Alicia. I mean, you’re not supposed to have secrets from your wife, right? But if you told her, what difference does it make if you tell your best friend? And since I have been your best friend since ...” Starbuck went on, oblivious to the annoyed looks Apollo send her way throughout her speech.
“What I tell my wife is none of your business, Lt. And if I receive classified information they are classified for a reason.” He snapped at Starbuck.
Kara felt taken aback. She hadn’t meant to start a fight with Lee. She had just tried to keep up a conversation. She was about to snap something back into his face when they reached the briefing room.
Lee quickened his steps and went straight for the podium. He was angry at himself. There really had been no reason to be so harsh to Kara. She just wanted to know what everyone else was asking. If the Cylons really looked like humans now. And he did agree with her. They all deserved to know the truth. This couldn’t stay hidden for long anyway. But it was still classified information and he was simply too exhausted to discuss this with her now.
Tired he looked at the pilots in front of him.
“Okay people. Combat landings expected again to be the order of the day, so ... double check your undercarriage before ....” He looked down at the pilots who looked just as tired as he was. “Look, you’ve all done this ... 237 times. You know what to do. No mistakes and lets make it to 238. And good luck and be careful out there.” He practically had to force the words to come out of his mouth. He felt too tired to even speak.
One after the other the Pilots left the briefing room. Lee noticed how Kara shot him an angry look before she left too. He guessed he deserved that after he had snapped at her before without reason. He would apologize to her later. Now he had to finish his reports. On his way to his office he ran into Colonel Tigh.
“Captain, wait a minute.” He called out to Apollo. ”New orders from the Old Man. Every pilot has to take stims from now on.” When he saw Apollo’s annoyed look he went on. “We just had too many cases of exhaustion breakdowns. We can’t afford any more. Especially not with the pilots.”
“Yes, Sir.” Apollo sighed. He didn’t like to take stims but Tigh was right. They couldn’t go on like this forever.
“Report to sickbay for further instructions. I’ll put a note about this in the ready room.” Tigh said before he left.
Sighing Apollo started his way to sickbay to pick up the stims for the pilots. He would never get finished with his reports before the Cylons came again. Well, he would just have to postpone lunch to some other time. That would safe him some more minutes. He decided to check on this family on his way to sickbay. Their quarter lay on the way so it wouldn’t take much time. He just wanted to hold his daughter for a second and see after Alicia.
When he entered his quarter he found his wife playing with their daughter.
“Lee.” She called out surprised when she saw her husband stepping in. He gave her a quick kiss then he reached for his daughter.
“Hey Pumpkin, miss me?” He smiled at her lovingly.
“Yes.” Nia quickly nodded and laughed at him.
“I just have a few minutes. How are you holding up?” Lee asked his wife.
“Tired, as is everyone else. Other than that we’re doing fine.” She looked at her daughter and smiled. “Nia is probably the only one that gets enough sleep. The alarms and jumps doesn’t seem to disturb her anymore. She sleeps right through them.” She told him.
“That’s my girl.” Lee laughed at his daughter. Then his eyes fell on an almost empty pill box on the table. Puzzled he looked at his wife.
“You said you still had enough pills for weeks.” He said to her.
“Well, uhm, yeah, I didn’t want to worry you.” Alicia looked down on the floor. “And it’s not like I can go to the next pharmacy and get some new ones.” She suddenly turned defensively.
“Then what were you gonna do? Just take nothing? You know you can’t do that.” Lee was starting to get angry. How could she just ignore this?
“And what am I supposed to do? What .. you think they have Valproat on a battlestar?” Alicia hissed at him. She was now as angry as Lee.
Lee let out a frustrated sigh. He forced himself to calm down. “I have to talk to Doc Cottle anyway. I’ll asked him for something.” He looked at his wife for a few seconds. “Sorry, I didn’t mean to get angry. I just ...” He sighed again.
“No, I’m sorry. I should have told you. No secrets, right?” Alicia smiled sadly at Lee.
“Right. ... I have to go. I’m already running late. I love you.” He kissed her again. Then he put Nia back on the floor, gave her a quick kiss on the forehead and left. He quickly went on to sickbay.
“Just give each of your pilots 2 of these pills and they should be fine for the next hours. You can repeat that for about 2, maybe 3 days. But I don’t recommend to go on stims longer then that. The risk of addiction gets too big after that time.” Cottle explained to Lee.
“Tell that to the Cylons.” Lee stated dryly. “Thanks Doc.” He took in a deep breath. “Uhm, Doc, there’s one more thing I’d like to talk to you about.”
“Sure, what’s up?” Cottle asked.
“It’s ... It’s about my wife. She ...uhm She suffers from ... from some form of ... manic depressions. She’s taken Valproat so far, but she’s running out of them soon. I thought that maybe, uhm, you might have something similar ...” Lee looked hopeful at Cottle.
Cottle thought about what Lee had just told him for a moment. “Hmm, that’s difficult. We don’t have Valproat here since people with this disease usually don’t get to work on a battlestar.” He looked thoughtfully at Lee for another moment. “How long will her pills last?” He wanted to know.
“About 2 days.” Lee replied.
“Okay, I’ll think about it. I’ll let you know if I have something.” Cottle assured Lee.
Gratefully Lee looked at Cottle. “Thanks Doc.”
Lee ordered one of the more older pilots, Frosty, to hand out the stims to the first pilots. He only had 15 minutes left and wanted to finish at least the last cycle’s report before he had to go out again. When he was almost done someone knocked on the hatch to his office.
“Cone on in.” He said tired. When the hatch opened he saw Frosty stepping into the room.
“I’m sorry to disturb you, Sir, but ...” Frosty stopped hesitantly.
“What is it, Lt.?” Lee questioned.
“Uhm, it’s Starbuck, Sir. She said she won’t take the stims, Sir.” Apollo let out a frustrated groan as he heard that. Angrily he got up, grabbed the pills out of Frosty’s hand and went to find Starbuck.
He found her in the hangar bay inspecting her Viper. On his way down he had decided that it wouldn’t make much sense to start yelling at her so he would try the friendly way first. They could always hit each other later.
“Hey, you, uhm, you see the note from the XO?” He said to her.
“Yeah, I saw it. No way.” Starbuck replied stubbornly.
“Kara, everyone else ...” Lee tried again.
“I don’t fly with stims. They blunt your reflexes, your reaction time.” She interrupted him and continued checking her Viper.
Lee let out an exhausted sigh. Why couldn’t she just take her orders like anyone else on this ship. He really was too tired for this. “Come on, Kara, give me a break. Just ...”
“Why are we arguing about this?” Kara asked him angrily.
“I have no idea.” Apollo shook his head in confusion. What was her problem now?
“Neither do I. You’re the CAG – act like one.” Kara yelled at him.
“What the hell does that mean?” He yelled back. He was starting to get angry now too.
“It means that you’re still acting like you’re everyone’s best friend. We’re not friends; you’re the CAG! ‘Be careful out there?’ Our job isn’t to be careful, it’s to shoot Cylons out of the frakking sky! ‘Good hunting’ is what you say. And now one of your idiot pilots is acting like a child and refusing to take her pills. So she either says ‘Yes, Sir’ and obeys a direct order or you smack her in the mouth and you drag her sorry ass down to sickbay and you make her take those pills!” Kara shouted at Lee while she walked up to him until she stood directly in front of him.
They both stared at each other furiously for some time before they both broke out into a laughter.
“Well, I’m glad I’m not working for you.” Lee said grinning.
“You’re damn right your glad.” Starbuck replied still laughing.
He looked at her for a second. “So, do I have to smack you in the mouth, Lieutenant?” He asked quietly.
“No, Sir. I’ll take my pills.” She replied. Then she saw him holding out the pill box. “Oh, perfect.” Sighing she held out her hand and he let the pills fall down on it.
“Carry on.” He told her.
“Yes, Sir.” Reluctantly Kara swallowed down her pills.
Satisfied Lee turned around and went to his Viper. Kara watched him leaving shaking her head. Then she noticed Tyrol watching her with an astounded look on his face.
“What?” She asked angry.
Tyrol just arched an eyebrow and slowly turned away. He didn’t get these two. One minute they’re fighting, the next minute they’re best friends again. The way they were acting one could think they were lovers or something. But since the CAG was married that couldn’t be it. Maybe they were both just plain crazy.
Again Lee sat in his Viper waiting for the Cylons to come. Only two minutes to go. He found it much easier this time to stay awake thanks to the stims. But they also gave him an edgy feeling like he couldn’t sit still for a second. Which wasn’t really a comfortable feeling when you are stuck in a Viper.
“Hey, Apollo, do you also feel like running around the Galactica for 10 rounds would be a great thing to do right now?” He could hear Starbuck over the comm.
“Yep, absolutely. But I guess we have to settle with shooting down Cylons for now.” He replied. He could hear Starbuck laughing over the comm and had to smile at that.
“One minute to mark.” He announced a few seconds later.
And again the Cylons came right on time. Exactly after 33 minutes a Basestar appeared and launched it’s Raiders. This time the Colonials weren’t so lucky. More and more civilian ships had reported problems with their FTL-Drive so it took a couple of minutes too long before all ships had jumped into safety. By this time the first Raiders had reached the Vipers and it came to a pretty fierce battle. Fortunately they didn’t loose any pilots and all returned safe back to Galactica. Safe, but only for the next 33 minutes, Apollo thought bitter.
“Jump 238 complete.” Gaeta reported.
“Start the clock.” Tigh ordered. He felt like he could already repeat these words in his sleep. If he would get any sleep at all.
“33 minutes ... mark.” Gaeta announced again fleet wide.
“All civilian ships present and ...” Dualla started do report as usual but then her eyes widened in horror. “Strike my last. One civilian ship missing and unaccounted for, Sir.”
“Which one?” Tigh asked alerted as he quickly went over to Dualla’s console.
“The Olympic Carrier. Commercial passenger vessel.” Dualla reported still slightly shocked. She had been afraid something like this would happen ever since the Cylons had attacked the first time after their jump into presumed safety.
“Were they left behind?” Adama asked concerned.
“I think I accounted for all civilian ships before we left, Sir.” Dualla replied hesitantly.
“You think? Did you or did you not?” Tigh yelled at her angrily.
“They’re ... they’re not logged in, Sir. I think they may have been left behind.” Dualla was forcing down the tears welling up in her eyes.
“How many people aboard the ship?” Adama asked quietly.
“1.345 souls, sir.” Dualla whispered.
“You’re telling me we left over 1.300 people to die at the hand of the Cylons?” Tigh asked her angrily. This shouldn’t have happened.
“It may not have been her fault, Sir.” Gaeta cut in. He felt sorry for Dualla. He could see she was near crying already. “It may have simply been a navigational error and they jumped to the wrong coordinates. Or the Cylons may have destroyed the ship before they jumped ...”
“Or fifty other things may have happened. The point is, we don’t know what the hell did happen.” Tigh looked angry at the people standing around him. “Yes, we’re tired. Yes, there’s no relief. Yes, the Cylons keep coming at us, time after time after time. And yes, we are still expected to do our jobs!” He shouted.
Adama looked around him, sadness visibly in his eyes. “We make mistakes, people die. There aren’t many of us left. ...Carry on.” He said quietly.
A few minutes later on Colonial 1 the number on the white board showing the last survivors of humanity were corrected down to 47.972.
Lee sat back in his office. He ran his hands through his hair as he tried to concentrate on his reports. Thanks to the stims just sitting around still wasn’t the most easiest thing to do right know. He imagined Starbuck running around the Galactica letting of some steam. Or taking a long, hot shower. Or getting something to eat. No matter what she did right now he wished he could join her instead of sitting around in his office.
So far he had at least managed to finally finish the report from two cycles before. There were only two more to go. But he found it harder with every passing minute to concentrate on what he was writing down. Despite the stims he still felt tired and hungry. He closed his eyes for a second. Shouldn’t these frakking stims make him more wakeful? All they did was make him feel on the edge. Starbuck was right. These frakking pills were playing with one’s head.
A knock on the door interrupted his thoughts.
“Come on in.” He called out. He hoped there hadn’t been another problem with one of the pilots again. He smiled when he saw Alicia and Nia walking in.
“We thought you could use something to eat so we brought you something from the mess.” Alicia told him, smiling warmly at him. She looked just as tired and exhausted as Lee felt.
“You’re an angel. I’m starving.” Lee called out thankfully. While Alicia put the food on his desk his daughter crawled on his lap.
“Hi Daddy.” She gave him one of her favorite smiles.
“Hey pumpkin.” He gave her a kiss on her forehead. The reports were forgotten for the moment. He quickly began to eat, sharing with his daughter from time to time. He was determined to eat up all the food Alicia had brought before he had to get back into his Viper. Who knew when he would get another chance to eat?
Suddenly the hatch opened again and Kara entered the room.
“Oh food.” She called out gladly and quickly took a seat next to Lee’s desk. “You don’t mind, do you?” She had already started taking some of the food. The way she looked she really had just enjoyed a shower. Lee already envied her for that.
Nevertheless he grinned at her shaking his head. “Well, since you’re already eating ...”
“I would have brought more if I had known you were coming.” Alicia said. It was bugging her that Kara ate the food that had been intended to be for Lee. She had no idea why but she was a bit jealous of Kara. Maybe it was just because she got to spend so much more time with Lee since they were both pilots. But there was something in the way they were looking at each other sometimes that worried her slightly.
“Oh, that’s okay. Lee doesn’t mind to share, right, Lee?” Kara grinned at her friend.
“Yeah, right.” He laughed at her and they both looked at each other for a moment with glistening eyes. “Can you imagine what I had to endure during flight school?” He turned to his wife laughing.
“Oh yeah ...” Alicia forced herself to laugh back.
“So, Alicia, have you heard that the Cylons look like us now?” Kara asked after a few moments with a big smirk on her face.
“Kara!” Lee warned her.
“What?” Kara answered with a full mouth, still grinning mischievously. Then she looked questioningly back at Alicia.
“Uhm, I heard two marines talking about it in the mess, but I’m not sure if it’s true.” Alicia answered, not sure what to think of this question.
“So, you haven’t heard anything from ... let’s say ... higher sources?” Kara kept asking innocently.
“That’s it. Out! Now! I meet you on the Hangar Deck in 5 minutes.” Lee tried to look angry while he desperately tried not to laugh out loud. Kara was probably the most annoying person in his life but he had missed that usual banter between them the last two years.
“Aye, aye, Sir.” Kara smugly saluted to him, waved shortly at Nia, grabbed some more food for the way and thanked Alicia for the meal. Then she quickly disappeared into the corridor.
Lee shook his head smiling while he watched the hatch closing behind Kara.
“I really can’t understand how you could be friends with her for so long. You two are so different.” Alicia asked in disbelieve. She had never understood the relationship between Lee and Kara.
“That’s what makes it so interesting, I guess. ... And I think deep down we’re not so different at all.” He replied thoughtfully, still staring at the closed hatch.
Alicia wasn’t sure if he had even meant to say that last part aloud.
A few minutes later Starbuck and Apollo found themselves back in their Vipers again, waiting for the Cylons to show up. But when the 33 minutes were over, nothing happened. No Basestar appeared.
“Hey Apollo, what do you think this means? Did we escape them?” Starbuck asked after a few minutes.
“I don’t know. Maybe ...” Apollo replied doubtful. He thought about the ship they had lost the last time they had jumped. The Olympic Carrier. It couldn’t be a coincidence that the Cylons didn’t show up right after that.
“Apollo, Galactica. You are ordered to set up a combat patrol around the fleet. The rest of the pilots are to land immediately.” Apollo could hear Dee over the comm a few minutes later.
“All right, people, you heard the order. Boomer, Starbuck, warm up with me. We’ll fly the first CAP. I want everyone else back on Galactica and in their racks. Three hour rotation.” He ordered.
“Hey Apollo, not that I’m not honored to be chosen to sit out in my cockpit for the next three hours, but uh ...” Starbuck said, slightly complaining.
“But why you?” Apollo asked grinning. “Take a guess.”
“Cause I’m on drugs?” Starbuck smirked. She would make Lee pay for this, that was for sure.
“You got it. This patrol is 100 % stimulated.” He laughed quietly as he imagined Kara’s face right now.
“Someone else feel like they have ants crawling behind their frakking eyeballs?” Crashdown, the Raptor’s ECO, cut in for the first time.
Silently Apollo had to agree. He hoped he would never have to take stims again in his life. “Hey, how about you, Boomer? Doc tells me, you’re holding up better than anybody in the squadron.”
“I’m tired like everybody else.” Boomer replied.
“You never seem it.” Apollo went on. In fact he had already wondered how she held up so good. She looked like she had just slept 10 hours in a row.
“That’s cause she’s a Cylon.” Starbuck called out jokingly.
“You’re just gonna make me come over there and kick your ass, aren’t you?” Boomer called back. She hated jokes like that. They always send shivers down her spine for some reason.
“Okay, okay, let’s set up a patrol here, before somebody gets hurt. Follow me.” Apollo ordered, fully back to being the CAG.
“Copy that, Apollo.” Starbuck replied.
Almost three hours had passed and still no sign of the Cylons. Everyone had just started to hope that maybe this time they had finally managed to escape when suddenly the alarms went off.
“Dradis contact.” Gaeta called out. “Bearing 3-4-8, carom 1-2-0. One ship. ... Getting recognition signal ... It’s the Olympic Carrier, Sir.” Relieved Gaeta looked up from his console.
“Is that confirmed?” Tigh asked stunned.
“It’s confirmed, Sir.” Dualla reported.
“Thank the gods.” Relieved Tigh looked up at the Dradis console.
“Action stations.” Adama suddenly ordered after staring at the Dradis for several seconds. Tigh looked at him stunned. “Put the fleet into Condition 1. I want all Vipers manned and ready, but keep them in the tubes.” Adama went on while everyone in CIC stared at him in confusion for a second.
“Mr. Gaeta?” Adama went on.
“Restart the clock. 33 minutes.” He said determinedly. Just like Lee Adama didn’t think that it was a coincidence that the Cylons stopped coming right after the Olympic Carrier had disappeared.
“I hope you’re wrong.” Tigh said quietly to Adama.
“So do I. ... So do I.” Adama sighed. He had really hoped this nightmare was finally over.
Anxiously Apollo sat in his Viper and watched the Olympic Carrier approaching the fleet. He listened to Boomer contacting the ship’s pilot.
“Olympic Carrier, Olympic Carrier. This is Raptor 478, Callsign Boomer. I have you in visual contact. Please respond on this channel, over.”
“Raptor 478, this is the Olympic Carrier. We have you in visual contact. Thank the Lords of Kobol. You don’t know how relieved we are to see you.” The Pilot of the Olympic Carrier replied. Boomer smiled relieved at hearing the Pilot’s voice.
“Roger that, Olympic Carrier. Can I ask about you whereabouts?” She questioned.
“We had trouble with our FTL-Drive. Took us almost three hours to fix.” The Pilot answered while his ship quickly went on approaching the fleet.
“Boomer, Galactica.” Dualla cut in from CIC. “Galactica Actual wants you to ask them how they escaped the Cylons.”
“You got me.” The Pilot answered after Boomer had passed on the question. “They were closing in on us when the rest of you were jumping. I thought we were goners, then they just broke off. Someone must have been watching out for us.”
“Roger that.” Boomer looked at Crashdown wondering. Why would the Cylons just let them go?
“One other thing, Boomer.” The Pilot went on. “I’ve got a Dr. Amarak on board, he claims he has an urgent matter to discuss with the President. He’s been driving me crazy.”
“Olympic Carrier, can you be more specific?” Boomer asked.
“I’m afraid I can’t. He says he knows something about a traitor in our midst and he’s unwilling to share more than that.” The Pilot replied.
Boomer suddenly felt nervous as she listened to the Pilot’s last words. For some reason she wished the Olympic Carrier had never appeared again. But that was ridiculous. There were over 1.300 people on board that ship. She had been as shocked as everyone else when she heard they had been lost. And know she wished for them to stay lost? She shook her head to get a clear mind again. Of course she was glad they were all alive and safe. It was probably just that talk about a traitor within the fleet that had made her nervous.
“Boomer, Galactica.” Dee interrupted her thoughts. “Your orders are to jam all transmissions from the Olympic Carrier. No further voice contact is authorized.”
“Roger that, Galactica.” Boomer replied confused. She got even more confused when she got ordered to send a message to the Olympic Carrier by signal light that they should maintain their present position and were not allowed to approach the fleet until further notice. Boomer send the signals as she had been ordered but the Olympic Carrier just carried on approaching the fleet.
“I don’t think they got the message, Apollo.” Starbuck said over the comm. She had a bad feeling about this. They had both been listening to the transmissions between Boomer and the Olympic Carrier. And something just didn’t seem right.
“Yeah, I see it. Boomer, break wireless silence on my authority. Warn them to stop their engines immediately.” Apollo ordered. He shared Starbucks feelings about this situation. Something was definitely not right.
“Apollo, they’re not responding.” Boomer called out after she had unsuccessfully tried to contact the Olympic Carrier again.
“Are you using the same channel?” Apollo asked.
“Yeah, but suddenly nobody’s home.” Boomer replied worried.
Apollo thought for a moment what they could do to make the Pilot of the Olympic Carrier understand the seriousness of the situation. “Starbuck, fire a burst across their bow.” He finally ordered.
“Copy that.” Starbuck replied, grinning mischievously. Then she turned her Viper around and fired a few shots. The Olympic Carrier didn’t even slow down, let alone stop.
‘Frak!’ Apollo thought. “Boomer. Let Galactica know we have a problem out here.” He had a feeling this would come to a bad end if the Olympic Carrier didn’t start to follow their orders soon. A few moments later – exactly 33 minutes after the Olympic Carrier had appeared again - he noticed several Cylon Raiders appearing on his Dradis. “Frak.” He called out.
“I’m right there with you, Apollo. What are we gonna do know?” Starbuck wanted to know. She had hoped they had seen the last of the Cylons 3 hours ago.
“Cylons, on intercept course. They’ll be in weapons range within two minutes.” Crashdown announced. Suddenly his console starting beeping. “Frak me! Radiological alarm!” He called out. Terrified he looked on his screen. The radiological alarm came directly from the Olympic Carrier. How was that even possible?
“We have new orders.” Boomer transmitted to Apollo and Starbuck after a few moments. “We are directed to ... destroy the Olympic Carrier and return to Galactica.” Shocked she turned around to Crashdown. But suddenly she felt a wave of relief flash over her. The traitor, the Pilot had spoken of before, would stay undetected. And then she was even more shocked over her own feelings than over the orders she had just passed on. What was wrong with her?
“It’s a civilian ship!” Starbuck called out in disbelief.
“Yeah, a civilian ship with nukes.” Apollo sighed frustrated.
He kept flying around the Olympic Carrier, trying to look inside through the windows. He couldn’t see anyone inside the ship. He took a few deep breaths before he started speaking. He couldn’t believe he was actually going to do this. “The Cylons will be here any second. If we’re gonna do this, then just do it. Starbuck, form up with me. We’ll make one pass from astern.” He ordered. He hoped that just this once Starbuck would follow her orders without to object against them.
Both Vipers flew behind the Olympic carrier, ready to fire at every moment.
“Lee, what if you’re wrong?” Starbuck desperately asked. She didn’t think she could just fire at a ship if there still might be over 1.300 innocent people on it. “Lee, come on. Lee!!!”
Apollo took another deep breath and tried to swallow down the bile that was starting to rise in his throat. He suddenly had the same feeling as when he was sitting in Colonial 1’s cockpit, leaving thousands of people on their sublight ships behind as the Cylons attacked that first day of war.
“Okay, fire on my mark.” He ordered.
“No frakking way, Lee. Lee! Come on!!!” Starbuck shouted over the comm.
This was worse than on Colonial 1. This time it would be him pulling the trigger, not the Cylons. He swallowed again.
“Mark.” He finally pressed out, hardly audible. Then he immediately started firing on the Olympic Carrier. Starbuck followed him only seconds later. They both kept firing until the ship exploded. Then they sat silently in their Vipers for a few moments, watching in horror the destroyed ship in front of them, before they returned to Galactica. They landed just in time. The Galactica jumped away as the first Cylon Raider came in weapon’s range to the Galactica.
After Lee had returned to Galactica he felt like he was in a daze. He handed his helmet to some deckhand and climbed out of his Viper without really realizing what he was doing. Somehow he found his way to the briefing room. Before he entered he took a few deep breaths and tried to regain his composure. He would have to get up there in front of the pilots and act like nothing had happened. As if he hadn’t just maybe killed over 1.300 people. He felt the bile starting to rise in his throat again. Just when he wanted to turn around he saw Kara standing next to him.
“I’d like a transfer, Sir.” She told him in a tired voice. She looked as bad as Lee felt.
“All transfers in writing please.” Lee said quietly.
“I’ll go find a pen.” She replied. She looked at him intensely and in her eyes he saw the same desperation he felt inside of him. They looked at each other for a short moment without saying another word. They didn’t have to. Somehow with bringing up this usual banter between them Kara had given him some of his strength back, at least for now. He wasn’t alone in this. He nodded at her shortly and together they stepped into the briefing room.
Kara watched Lee as he talked to the pilots. His all too familiar mask had slipped over his face again and he didn’t show any emotions at all. He acted as if nothing had happened. The great CAG who could get shocked by nothing. She could see the pilots were falling for this act and it gave them comfort. If the CAG was all right with what happened then they didn’t need to worry about it. But she had seen the desperation in Lee’s eyes a few minutes ago. She knew that he wasn’t okay. Just like she wasn’t.
After the briefing was over Kara stayed behind and waited for the pilots to leave. Then she turned to Lee.
“Did we do the right thing?”
Lee knew exactly what she meant but he couldn’t talk about this now, not even with her.
“We’re both tired and exhausted. Take a shower and get some sleep.” He replied without looking up from the papers in his hands. When he noticed that she was still standing in front of him, frozen in her tracks as it seemed to him, he finally looked up at her. The sad and desperate look on her face almost broke his heart. Kara seldom showed this vulnerable side of her but this time it seemed she couldn’t hide it any longer. He wished he could help her with this.
“You can take the showers in my quarter if you want.” He told her. “I still have to finish the roster for the next few days so you can take your time.” This was all he could give her. He knew it wasn’t enough to make the sick feeling go away, but right now he couldn’t do much more for her.
“Just leave me some warm water, okay?” He forced himself to smile at her before turning back to his papers.
Kara let out a deep sigh she had been holding these last few seconds while Lee was talking. She knew he was just offering this to her so she would let go of it. For a moment she considered to ignore his offer and try to talk to him. But the thought of a hot shower all for herself was just too tempting. She sighed. She was such a weak person.
“Thanks.” She said. Then she turned around and left the briefing room.
On her way to Lee’s quarter she suddenly realized that she would meet Alicia again. She stopped in her tracks. For a moment she considered turning around and using the general showers after all. But then she would run into several pilots who would all want to know what really happened with the Olympic Carrier. If she went to Lee’s quarter she would just have to change a few nice words with Alicia and then she would have the shower all for herself. And maybe Lee would be back already when she got out. Kara finally decided to go with the latter alternative and went on to Lee’s quarter.
About an hour after Kara left Lee had finally finished the new pilot roster. While he was writing the roster down on the board he noticed the Commander walking into the room.
“Sir.” Lee said quietly without looking at his father.
“Son.” Adama replied while stepping closer. He looked at Lee for a few moments. He could see that Lee was having trouble coping with what had happened today. “I gave the order. It was my responsibility.” He said. He wanted to take some of the blame that his son was feeling of his shoulders.
Raising an eyebrow Lee looked at his father. “I pulled the trigger. That’s mine.” Then he turned his attention back on the board in front of him. Sadly Adama looked at his son. He wanted to help him but he just couldn’t find the right words. Somehow he never could when it came to Lee.
Hours after the destruction of the Olympic Carrier Lee finally went back to his quarters. He was relieved to find his wife and daughter both deep asleep. Exhausted he took of his uniform and quietly got into bed, careful not to wake his sleeping wife.
“Lee ...” Alicia asked in a sleepy voice. She had woken up the second she felt Lee lie down next to her.
“Hey. Get back to sleep. It’s already late.” Lee told her quietly, hoping that she didn’t want to talk to him right now. It would be understandable if she would want to, after all, they had hardly seen each other the past few days. But he was too exhausted to talk now.
“Are you all right? I heard a civilian ship got destroyed ...” Alicia began.
“Let’s talk about that some other time, okay? I’m really tired.” Lee interrupted her in a harsh voice. He immediately regretted his harsh words but the Olympic Carrier wasn’t something he wanted to discuss now. Without another word he turned around, away from Alicia. He stared into the darkness around him for a few minutes before he finally closed his eyes. Immediately images of the exploding ship appeared in front of his eyes. He groaned slightly.
“Lee?” Alicia asked again worried.
He didn’t respond and pretended to be asleep already. He knew she could tell he was still awake. For some reason she always knew these things. He hated to act like this towards her but he was relieved when she didn’t try to talk to him again that night.
Eventually Lee fell into an uneasy sleep. He dreamt of the Olympic Carrier. In his dreams he pulled the trigger again and again and watched the ship explode while he listened to the screams and pleadings of the people inside the ship. He finally woke up, shivering all over. Alicia also woke up when she noticed Lee shivering next to her. This time she didn’t try to get him to talk. She just put her arms around him silently and pulled him a little closer to her. She held him tightly to her until the shivers stopped and he fell back to sleep.
It was already late when Lee stepped into his office. He was surprised to find Kara sitting at his desk, her feet on the table and two bottles of ambrosia in front of her. Apparently she had already drank some on her own since one of the bottles was almost half empty already.
“Hey Apollo, wanna join in?” Kara asked, waving at the bottles. “You look like you could need a drink.” She went on when she saw Lee still standing hesitantly at the hatch.
“And why would that be?” He asked with an arched eyebrow. Truth was she was right. He wanted a drink now more than anything. Maybe he could finally get some sleep after that without having nightmares about the Olympic Carrier.
“Bad dreams maybe?” Kara asked as if she had read his mind. “I can assure you, this really helps against those.” She let out a harsh laugh. Then she put her feet off the table, took the bottle and waved him to come closer.
Despite the bad mood he had been in the last few days Lee had to chuckle at the sight in front of him. Apparently Kara couldn’t sleep for the same reasons he woke up to every night since that day. They really weren’t that different even if everyone around them thought so. Slowly he stepped closer and picked up the glass which Kara had already filled with ambrosia.
“These are my last bottles, you know. Didn’t think I had to keep a stock with the decommissioning coming up. So you got to drink it with honor.” She grinned.
“To your last bottles then.” Lee said and poured down his glass in one draught. “That’s good.” He gave Kara back his glass for a refill and sat down.
Kara had an evil smile on her face while she hold the bottle over his glass. “You’re not on duty, right? I don’t want to be responsible if our CAG gets drunk on his shift.”
“Don’t worry, my shift ended five minutes ago. Now give me back my glass, Lieutenant.” He ordered grinning back at her.
“Aye, aye, Sir.” She laughed, handing him his glass, now filled with ambrosia again. And again he drank it out almost immediately.
They sat together like that for about an hour until the bottles were almost empty. They were both visibly drunk by then.
“So tell me, Lee. If your shift was already over when you came in here, why didn’t you go to your happy family and enjoyed the evening?” Kara asked slightly slurring.
“Paperwork.” Lee replied shortly, looking into his glass.
“Right, and that couldn’t have waited until morning?” She kept on asking.
“Nope, I’m already behind.” He answered, still not looking at her.
“Trouble in paradise?” Kara asked grinning. She had no idea why she kept pounding on this subject. Why should she care if he went to his family or not? It really wasn’t any of her business.
“Paradise got nuked by the Cylons along with everything else.” Lee replied, pouring down another glass. He bit his lip. He hadn’t meant to sound so bitter. He hoped Kara was drunk enough not to notice the bitterness in his voice. But when he saw her looking at him wondering he knew he didn’t have such luck.
“Everything’s fine.” He quickly went on before she could ask any more questions. “I just hate to be behind with paperwork. You know me.” He smiled at her. Kara smiled right back at him but she noticed that his smile never reached his eyes. But before she could say anything to him he got up suddenly and tumbled slightly to the side. He let out a small laugh when he found his balance again.
“Now I know it’s time to go home. You better hit the rack soon, too. We both have early shift tomorrow.” His speech was slightly slurred by now too.
“You’re the CAG. You can change that.” Kara grinned at him.
“Not a chance. Good Night.” Lee turned around to the hatch.
“Sweet dreams, Captain.” Kara called after him. He didn’t turn around to her again and just continued walking back to his quarter. He tried to walk in a straight line but he wasn’t sure if it worked.
The next morning Alicia silently watched as Lee got into his dress uniform. He had hardly spoken a word the whole morning. In fact he had hardly spoken anything the past three days. He would come home late at night and fall into an uneasy sleep. He had nightmares every night. Alicia had tried to talk to him about it but he had totally shut her out every time she had approached the subject.
Last night he had even come home later than usual. And he had been drunk. He had told her that Kara had come by his office and they had shared a drink. Well, it had apparently been more than just one drink since he couldn’t even walk straight anymore when he had stepped into the room. But he had slept through the night without having nightmares. So at least with that Kara had helped him. Alicia wondered if Lee had talked to her about his nightmares. It disturbed Alicia that he might have had sought help with Kara and not with her.
Alicia watched how Lee looked into the mirror inside his locker door. He stared at his mirror image for a second in self-disgust before he slammed the locker door shut. It broke her heart to see him in so much pain and not being able to help him. Before Lee could leave the room she quickly went up to him, put her arms around his waist and pulled him closer to give him a kiss.
“I love to see you in your dress uniform.” She told him with a warm smile.
“Yeah, well, don’t get used to it. There won’t be many occasions to wear it anymore.” Lee forced himself to smile back at her.
“Lee ..” Alicia began again like she had the days before. She didn’t want him to leave while he still felt so bad. She just wanted to hold him close to her and make everything all right again.
“I gotta go.” Lee interrupted her before she could go on. He gave her a quick kiss and glanced shortly at his still sleeping daughter before he finally stepped out into the corridor.
Lee was on his way to the hangar deck to welcome the President when he ran into his father. Adama had arranged a military ceremony for the President since this was her first official visit to the Galactica. They walked together in silence for a while.
“You’re awfully quiet lately. Is something wrong?” Adama asked slightly worried.
Lee hesitated a moment before he replied. He wasn’t used to rely on his father with his problems. “I can’t stop thinking about the Olympic Carrier.”
Adama sighed. “That was three days ago. It’s ancient history under these circumstances. Leave the second-guessing to the historians.”
“But don’t we have a responsibility? I mean, as leaders, don’t we have an obligation to question our actions? To ... I don’t know, to make sure the decisions that we make are the right decisions?” Helplessly Lee looked at Adama. As a child he had always looked at his father as a man who had the right answer to every question and problem. He would always do the right thing, no matter how complicated the matter was. As a grown man Lee knew that his father could make mistakes too. Many mistakes actually. But for some reason he wanted back those feelings from his childhood right now. He wanted his father to say the right thing and everything would be all right again.
“We did what we had to do, son. A man takes responsibility for his actions, right or wrong. He accepts the consequences and lives with them. Every day.” Adama replied. He cursed himself silently. Those words sounded hollow now, even to him. He knew they were no consolation for his son. But he just didn’t know what else to say. He had lived with those believes most of his live.
Sadly Lee looked down. He wasn’t a child any longer and his father didn’t have the right words for him anymore to make the pain go away.
When they walked around a corner Colonel Tigh approached them. He was still busy getting his dress uniform in order.
“Piece of crap.” He yelled annoyed.
“You’re in a good mood today.” Adama stated dryly.
“Well, I feel like crap.” Tigh mumbled. “Hold that.” He handed his gloves to Adama while he tried to get his girdle in order. “She doesn’t expect us to do this every time she comes onboard, does she?” He went on.
“This was my idea.” Adama told him quietly.
“You? You hate these kind of things.” Tigh looked surprised at his friend.
“We start treating her like a president, she may starting to feel like one.” Adama explained. He just wished he had this ceremony behind him. He was feeling more like a tour guide a the moment then a Battlestar Commander.
When they had finally reached the Hangar Deck Adama turned to his son again. “I’d like you to come to dinner tonight with your wife and daughter.”
Surprised Lee looked at his father. “Uhm, yeah, sure. Okay. We’ll be there.” Lee didn’t know what to think of this. Since his father had send him away that night after the service Lee had thought he didn’t want a personal relationship and he had tried to run along with that. But this dinner invitation didn’t really fit in to a strict Commander/CAG-Relationship. He wished he knew what his father expected of him.
After the president had arrived Adama began to show her around the Galactica, starting with CIC where Roslin held a short speech to thank everyone for their efforts protecting the fleet.
Then Roslin listened to Adama while he quietly explained everything to her that was happening at the moment.
“Galactica’s water recycling system is close to 100 % effective. For all intents and purposes there’s not one drop of water that’s wasted aboard. We have enough water for several years before replenishing.” Adama told her while Dualla was talking to the Virgon Express who just got their water resources refilled from Galactica’s tanks.
“I see.” Roslin replied.
“Many of the ships, like the Virgon Express, were not made for long-term voyages. They’ll have to tank off of us periodically.” Adama went on.
“Right.” Roslin nodded. This wasn’t really new information to her. Unfortunately they had the same problem on Colonial One.
When Adama got called away by Tigh Roslin turned around to Lee who had been standing right next to her the whole time. “He thinks I’m a total idiot, doesn’t he?” She smiled at him sarcastically.
“What? Uh, no, Sir. No.” Lee was taken by surprise by her sudden question.
“It’s all right.” Roslin assured him.
“Madam President, if I may?” Apollo went on. He didn’t want Roslin to have the wrong impression of his father. “I think you should know that my father ... well, this entire ceremony was his idea.”
“I know. I think he’s enjoying it.” Roslin sighed.
“Well, actually, he hates protocol pomp and all that.” Lee told her, recalling the conversation he had heard earlier this morning between Tigh and his father.
“Really?” This time it was Roslin who looked surprised.
“He’s making a gesture, trying to make you feel like the President.” Lee explained. Roslin didn’t know what to say to this. This was the least she had expected. Astonished she turned around and looked at Adama for a few moments.
Suddenly the Galactica shook slightly for a few seconds.
“Decompression alarm!” Gaeta called out.
“Damage report, Mr. Gaeta.” Adama quickly went over to Gaeta’s console.
“Ruptures in tanks 3, 5, 7, 9!” Gaeta announced, staring at his console in disbelieve.
Worried Roslin looked around herself while Tigh and Adama were giving their orders to get the situation back under control. Finally she got Colonel Tigh’s attention.
“Every tank on the port side had ruptured. We’re venting all our water directly into space.” He explained in disbelieve while staring at the console in front of him.
Lee was on his way to the conference room where they would discuss the next actions after the explosions of the water tanks. He had stopped by his quarter to get out of his dress uniform. When he had told Alicia about the dinner invitation she had been really excited. She couldn’t wait to finally see something different than just her quarter and the mess hall. He would have to think of something for her to do. She couldn’t spend the next years sitting around in her quarter.
A few minutes later he sat in the conference room, listening to Lt. Gaeta’s explanations about the tank ruptures. They had lost almost 60 % of their water reserves which meant they had only enough water left for six days. And it would last only that long if they stopped supplying the civilian ships that depended on them. They would run out of water in two days at the latest which means that in two days one third of the fleet, over 16.000 people, would be dying of thirst.
When Gaeta was done he stepped of the podium obviously relieved.
“One more thing, Lieutenant.” Roslin stopped him before he could leave the room. She clearly wasn’t done with him yet. “Do you have any theories about what may have caused the accident?”
Hesitantly Gaeta looked at Adama before answering the President’s question. “There are many theories at this point, Madam President.” He shrugged his shoulders, apologizing for not being able to give her a better answer.
“Do you have a guess?” Roslin asked.
“I tell my officers not to guess. I prefer to wait until we have facts.” Adama told her.
“Indulge me.” Roslin said to Gaeta with an arched brow.
Again Gaeta looked hesitantly at Adama. That man’s attitude made Roslin furious but she tried not to let it show.
“Take a guess, Mr. Gaeta.” Adama said.
“Well, I would have to say the most likely explanation is that the tank was structurally weakened during the Cylon nuclear detonation during the first attack and then caused it to buckle and rupture. But it’s too early to say, Sir.” Gaeta explained.
“Interesting. Thank you, Lieutenant.” Roslin finally released Gaeta. Relieved he quickly left the room.
Lee had listened silently to all that Gaeta had explained. He didn’t think that structurally weakening was the most likely explanation. He remembered what the Pilot of the Olympic Carrier had said about a traitor within the fleet. This could have very easily been a case of sabotage.
Only half an hour later he found out that his suspicions had been right when Chief Tyrol told them they had found five detonation points within the tanks. He also said that Sergeant Hadrian, the Master-at-arms, had told him that six detonators where missing from an arms locker. That meant that one detonator was still unaccounted for.
“Chief, thank you very much.” Adama released Tyrol who left the podium even more relieved than Gaeta had been. Lee was surprised to find the Chief so nervous. He had always had the impression Tyrol was afraid of nothing. Public speaking in a room full of officers and the President apparently didn’t count to that.
“Everyone except for Colonel Tigh, Captain Adama and Doctor Baltar are now released. Please remember, this briefing is strictly confidential.” Adama waited for the other people to leave the room before he went on.
“There is at least one Cylon aboard the Galactica.” He said sternly.
“How many people know Cylons look like humans?” Roslin wanted to know.
“Rumor mill’s been working overtime. Half the ship’s talking about it.” Tigh muttered. Lee could only agree to that. He still remembered how Kara had questioned him about the matter the last few days.
“There’ll always be rumors and for most people that’s all they’ll ever be. I’m asking how many people actually know.” Roslin clarified her question.
“The five people in this room, plus three marines.” Tigh replied.
“Let’s keep it that way, once this gets out officially, people will be accusing each other of being Cylons for no reason at all.” Roslin ordered.
Lee bit his lip. He understood her reasons but he also thought that the people had a right to know. But it seemed he was alone on this.
“I agree.” Adama said. “Doctor Baltar, how are we doing on the screenings?”
“Screenings?” Baltar looked up confused.
“You’re supposed to be screening Galactica crew for potential Cylon agents.” Roslin told him impatiently. Why did this man think he was allowed to stay on Galactica at all if not for those screenings? And now it seemed he wasn’t even really listening to what was said to him. He really was a weird little man, Roslin thought.
“Doctor ... Doctor?” Adama looked questioningly at Baltar. ‘Of all scientific experts that had lived on the Twelve Colonies this crazy guy was the only survivor?’ He thought slightly annoyed. So much for bad luck.
“Oh right, the screenings. To tell you the truth, there are significant problems with implementing my Cylon detection method that I ...” He went on explaining for a while. Finally Adama interrupted him when he started using technical terms that no one except him understood. They finally agreed that Lt. Gaeta would help Dr. Baltar with the screenings in order for him to finish them sooner. But for some reason Baltar didn’t seem too happy about this extra help.
‘He really is weird.’ Roslin thought again to herself. She couldn’t know that everyone in the room shared her thoughts over Baltar at this moment.
Lee had been busy all day with handling the search for water, do his usual CAG-Job and help with the search for the still missing detonator. They hadn’t found the detonator but they had found water. Relieved he wanted to just get back to his quarters a little earlier today and take a quick shower before he went to his father for dinner. Even though they had found water, it still needed to be distributed, so long showers were still forbidden. But he would take what he could get. Unfortunately the President had asked to see him so instead of going home he took a ride to Colonial One.
“Thank you for coming, Captain Apollo.” President Roslin greeted him. She offered him a seat in front of her. When he had sat down she went on. “I am aware that you were in charge of the mission that destroyed the Olympic Carrier. I know what a hard thing that is to live with, for all of us. I’m struggling with it myself, frankly.” Roslin looked at Lee. She had been watching him closely this morning and she had noticed he was in some kind of emotional turmoil. She had thought all day if there was anything she could do to help him. She owed him so much.
Lee hesitated a moment. He didn’t want to burden the President with his own problems. But he felt the urge to talk about it and if she had the some problems then maybe talking about it would help them both.
“I can’t stop thinking about it.” He finally admitted. Then he remembered his father’s words from this morning and he suddenly felt foolish about discussing his problems with the President. “But a man ... has to accept responsibility for his actions. He doesn’t second-guess the choices he makes, he lives with them, every day.” When he repeated those words they sounded even more hollow than when he had heard them spoken by his father.
Thoughtfully Roslin looked at him. She could clearly hear Adama out of Lee’s last words. This man was unbelievable. It was clearly visible that Lee was struggling with the events of that day and he had told him this nonsense. Lee had probably been drilled with this military crap since he was a child.
“You know, I remember when President Adar send the marines into Aerilon. 15 people died.” She looked intensely at Lee while she spoke. “In public, of course, he had to say all the usual things. He was sure of what he’d done, made the right choice, stayed the course. But he knew it was a mistake. And he kept the names of the dead in his desk drawer. He said that it was imperative for a leader to remember and learn from the mistakes even if they can’t admit to them publicly.”
“Do you think we made a mistake?” Lee asked hesitantly after a few seconds.
“I don’t know.” Roslin admitted. “I don’t have a desk drawer yet, but I have a pocket.” While she spoke she reached into her pocket and took out a small piece of paper. She handed it to Apollo. It read: Olympic Carrier.
“I don’t want to add to your burdens.” Roslin went on after a few moments. “However I have a request: I would like you to be my personal military advisor.”
“I’m sorry, uhm ... my father is the senior military officer, he should advise you.” Lee replied slightly confused.
“Oh, no, no, no. No ... I don’t mean to go behind your father’s back. Nothing like that. I’m not looking for military advise. I’m looking for advise about the military. That little inside about your father making a gesture, it really helped me. It made me reassess the man. I would appreciate more of those insights. And you can keep your day job as the C-A-G.” Roslin explained.
“It’s pronounced CAG.” Lee corrected her smiling. She had pronounced every single letter of the word CAG.
“Do you see why I need you?” Roslin smiled back at him.
Apollo chuckled at that. Then he looked slightly worried at her. “Uhm, so, who’s going to tell my father?”
“Well, ahem ... Uhm, I was thinking that that would be your first assignment.” Roslin said grinning.
“Somehow, I knew you were gonna say that.” Lee replied dryly.
“Thank you, Captain.”
After his talk with the president Lee went back to his office. He knew he was already running late but he wanted to get this done immediately. When he stepped into his office he sat down at his desk and began writing. He started with writing down the name Olympic Carrier on a piece of paper, just like Roslin had done. Then he wrote down the name of every ship they had to leave behind that first day of war. After he had finished that he wrote down all the pilot’s names who had died since he had become Galactica’s CAG. It was a long list, too long for such a short period of time. And Lee knew she would get longer before this war would finally be over. But when he was done he felt better. Somehow the tension that had been inside of him these last days was gone. Relieved he took a deep breath. Then he put the paper back inside his desk. He hid it under some folders because he didn’t want anyone to find it by accident. Finally he got up and left for his quarters. And for the first time in days he wasn’t afraid to fall asleep at night.
But before he could get this long dreaded sleep he had to get ready for the dinner with his father. When he stepped into his room he found clothes spread out everywhere. Kara had given Alicia some of her civilian clothes so she would have something other to wear than the one outfit she had on when she came to Galactica for the decommissioning ceremony. They didn’t fit perfectly as Alicia was a bit thinner than Kara but it was definitely better than nothing.
Lee looked questioningly at his wife but she just shot him an annoyed look. He quickly bent down to his daughter and gave her a kiss on the forehead.
“Did you miss me?” He asked her smiling. Even though he had seen her every day he hadn’t really spent much time with her since she had been mostly already asleep when he had gotten home. He felt guilty about that and promised himself to pay more attention to her in the future. But Nia didn’t seem to be angry with him, she just laughed at him and nodded her head. “Evvi sekent.” She said. Lee had to laugh at that. It was her first attempt to ever speak this reply aloud. Proudly he put her into his arms.
“Lee, we’re going to be late!” Alicia called out impatiently.
“Oh yeah, right.” For a second Lee had forgotten all about the dinner. He quickly got up and jumped under the shower. When he got out again a few minutes later Alicia was still not sure what to wear. She tried on one shirt after the other but wasn’t really satisfied with anything. Lee was glad he just had to throw on his uniform.
“Since when do you care so much about clothes?” He asked her confused. Alicia usually just needed a few minutes to look perfect. She just shot him another annoyed look and Lee quickly turned his attention back to his own getting dressed. After all he couldn’t visit his Dad just in a towel. When he was finally dressed he put his daughter on his lap. She immediately started playing with his dog tag’s again. Alicia still wasn’t finished.
‘Now who is late.’ Lee silently thought to himself.
“Which do you like better?” Alicia asked while she held up two shirts. To Lee they both looked pretty much the same except for the color maybe but he knew better than to say that to his wife so he just picked one. When she was finally finished with dressing she turned to her husband.
“How do I look?” She asked excitedly. She was really looking forward to this dinner and finally spending some time together with Lee. She had noticed that he had actually smiled a bit this evening. Spending time with his daughter seemed to have healed some of his wounds. He should have done that before than she didn’t have to spend the last three days worrying about him.
“You look great.” Lee replied. “Can we go now?”
“You really think this is appropriate? He’s a Commander after all.” Alicia suddenly felt very insecure. She didn’t want to offend her father-in-law on their very first family dinner.
“Tonight he’s just my father. So don’t worry. He doesn’t care for these things much anyway.” Lee shrugged his shoulders. He didn’t understand his wife. She never cared about stuff like this before. She surely hadn’t been so nervous when she had met his mother for the first time.
Alicia still wasn’t quite convinced but she figured it was too late to change again. Relieved that they could finally go Lee picked up Nia and together they went to his fathers quarters.
“The food tastes delicious. Much better than what we usually get to eat in the mess.” Alicia said smiling. They had only arrived 15 minutes late at Adama’s quarters and so far the dinner went pretty good. Lee was actually surprised how comfortable he felt tonight being in the same room with his father. He hadn’t felt like this since he was a child. That was one of the reasons why he had decided to wait until the next morning to inform his father of his new job as military advisor. He didn’t want to ruin this evening.
“I told the cook I needed something special for tonight. “ Adama replied. He smiled back at Alicia while he tried to wipe off some sauce of his sleeve. He had insisted to sit next to his granddaughter and now she was spitting most of her food on him. Lee managed to stop her most of the time but sometimes she was still faster than him. Laughingly he looked at his father who tried not to let Alicia know that his uniform was already almost half soaked by her daughters food. But Alicia was too excited to even notice. She kept talking about the last two years. Of the vacations she had spend with Lee and Nia, of Nia’s first birthday party, their wedding, all the things that Adama had missed out.
Lee felt a stab of guilt when he noticed the sad look that sometimes shortly appeared on his fathers face after Alicia had told him another episode from Lee’s life that Adama hadn’t known of and probably never would have if it hadn’t been for the Cylon attack. He seemed eager to learn about every little detail of the last two years in his son’s live. And Alicia seemed to love the fact that she could tell all these things to her father-in-law. Lee had to smile when he saw her like this. He hadn’t seen her laugh and talk so much in a long time.
After they were finished with eating they still sat together some time and talked about old times. They didn’t realize how late it had become until Nia almost fell asleep in her fathers arms.
“We should get going. I think it’s time we put this little girl in bed.” Lee said while he smiled lovingly at his daughter. Adama was deeply touched to see his son with his daughter in his arms. He still wasn’t used to the idea that Lee was a father himself now. He could see that Lee loved his daughter deeply. Carefully he hold her in his arms while they got up to leave.
“It was a lovely evening. Thank you for the invitation.” Alicia said to Adama.
“I hope we can repeat this soon.” Adama was already looking forward to the next family dinner. Even though his uniform was soaked in sauce he had fallen in love with his granddaughter from the first moment he had laid eyes on her and he was very fond of Alicia. But mostly he had enjoyed spending time with Lee. Adama couldn’t remember the last time he had seen his son so relaxed. And it gave him a warm feeling around his heart to hear his son laugh again.
“I’m sure we will. Good night, Dad.” Lee said smiling before he stepped out into the corridor.
Good night, son.” Adama replied with a happy smile. He loved the fact that Lee had just called him Dad
again instead of Commander.
“I’m glad you finally get along better with your father. He’s a really nice man.” Alicia said on their way back to their quarters. “Even though I still don’t know why, it’s good that you finally forgave him.” She looked cautiously at her husband. She still didn’t quite understand the sudden change in Lee’s demeanor towards his father. For two years he had refused to even mention his father’s name. Just thinking of him had made him furious. And all of a sudden most of these angry feelings were gone. She was convinced that it wasn’t just because of the attacks that Lee had forgiven his father.
“Yeah ...” Lee replied quietly. He hadn’t told her about Kara’s confession concerning Zak’s death. He didn’t like having secrets from Alicia but he felt like he would betray Kara if he told anyone else. He had simply explained to Alicia that because of what happened since the attacks he didn’t feel so angry towards his father anymore. They had all lost so much that there really was no sense in dwelling over this. He knew this explanation sounded weak and that she hadn’t completely believed him. She knew him too good for that. But he was thankful that she hadn’t pressed on and had let go of it instead.
The next morning Lee awoke refreshed and in a good mood. He had finally slept trough the night again without any nightmares and he still felt relaxed from the evening before. He had really enjoyed spending some free time with his father. It had felt good to be so close to him again, even if it was just for one evening.
When Lee slowly opened his eyes he noticed that Alicia was already up. That was unusual. Normally it was him who woke up earlier. He must have had missed more sleep than he had thought. He looked around the room. When he couldn’t see her he quickly got up and looked for her in the bathroom – the only other room in their quarters. He found her cleaning the showers.
“Good Morning. You’re up early.” He bent down to her and put his arms around her shoulder to give her a morning kiss.
“Let go, I have to get this finished.” She snapped at him.
“I’m sure that can wait a minute ...” He grinned at her.
“No, I want to get this done before Nia wakes up. And I’m sure you would be grateful not to have to use a filthy shower.” She replied angrily.
“It’s not filthy. You just cleaned it yesterday.” Lee looked at her surprised.
“No, I wanted to clean it yesterday but they cut the water down, remember? Don’t you see all this dirt?” She yelled and went on scrubbing the shower. Worried Lee looked at his wife. Something was clearly not right.
“Ali, are you okay?” He asked carefully.
“I will be as soon as I get this shower clean.” She snapped. “Now don’t disturb me. Go! Get your morning run done. I promise this will be clean when you get back.” She didn’t look up while she spoke and just kept on scrubbing.
Lee looked at her, now even more worried. But he decided it would be best to leave her alone for the moment. So he got his running gear and left his quarters. He would have to talk to Doc Cottle before his shift started.
Kara was already waiting outside his quarters.
“There you are, I was just gonna start without you.” She grinned at Lee.
“Why didn’t you come in?” Lee asked.
“I didn’t want to disturb you. Now let’s go. I already wasted enough time waiting.” Kara said, then she started running immediately. Lee just shook his ahead and quickly followed her. They ran in silence for about half an hour.
“You’re awfully quit this morning. Bad dreams again?” Kara finally asked.
“No, I slept through.” Lee replied.
“That’s good. Told you the Ambrosia would help.” Kara grinned.
“Mhmm.” When Lee didn’t even look at her, Kara shot him an annoyed look.
“Is there something on your mind?” She asked.
“There’s always something on my mind, comes with the job.” Lee replied, still not looking at her.
“Okay, is there something special on your mind that might keep you worrying more than the usual?” Kara asked again.
“Did it ever occur to you that the reason I’ve been so quiet all morning is that maybe I don’t want to talk?” Lee snapped at her. He immediately regretted his harsh words.
“Yes, I thought that could be the reason. I just decided to ignore it.” Kara replied sarcastically.
Lee suddenly stopped running. He leant against the corridor wall and closed his eyes for a few seconds. Worried Kara stopped running too and came to stand next to him.
“Lee, what’s wrong?” She asked quietly.
He let out a deep sigh before opening his eyes again.
“I ... Look, I’m sorry I snapped at you. There’s just a lot going on right now. With the job and ...” He sighed again. “Did I tell you I’m the new military advisor for the president?” He gave her a small smile.
“Really? What did your father say?” Kara asked. She could already imagine the Commander’s reaction to this.
“I haven’t told him yet.” Lee admitted.
“That’s going to be fun. Can I be in the same room when you tell him?” Kara asked grinning mischievously.
“No, but you could tell him.” Lee chuckled.
“Nope, I think I’m going to leave that to you. .... Is that really all that’s bothering you?” She looked at him questioningly.
Lee looked at her sadly for a moment. “Have you talked to someone about the Olympic Carrier?” He suddenly changed the subject. Surprised Kara looked at him.
“You should. It’s really helping.” Lee told her.
“Maybe I will. I got to go hit the showers now or I’ll be late for CAP. See you later.” Kara quickly turned around and started to leave. Suddenly she stopped again and turned back to Lee.
“Would you do it again?” She asked hesitantly.
Lee thought about that for a moment. “Yes, I would.” He finally replied determinedly.
“That’s all I need to know.” Kara said smiling. Then she turned around again and left.
Sighing Lee looked after her. Then he went back to his quarters.
When Lee opened the hatch to his room he could hear his daughter crying loudly. Quickly he went to her and picked her up in his arms. She immediately buried her face in his shoulders. Lee gently stroked her back and soothed comforting words to her until she calmed down.
“Nia, what’s wrong? Are you hurt somewhere?” He looked worried at his daughter. He cursed himself that he hadn’t checked on her before he left.
“Hungry.” She looked at him with sad eyes.
“Well, we can do something against that, right?” He smiled lovingly at his daughter. “Can you wait a few more minutes? I just get some new clothes and then we get something to eat, all right?”
Nia nodded at him, already smiling again. Gently he put her on the floor and gave her her doll so she had something to distract her. It usually always worked. For a few seconds he watched his daughter feeding her doll with imaginary food. He had to chuckle at the sight. Then he turned around and went into the bathroom. Alicia was still on her knees, only this time she was scrubbing the floor.
“Didn’t you hear Nia crying?” He asked her furious.
“What?” Alicia looked at him confused.
“Nia. Our daughter. Remember her? She sat in her bed in the next room crying! And she looked like she had been crying for quiet some time.” He looked at her angry.
“I ... I was cleaning. I didn’t hear her ...” Alicia looked so helpless that it broke Lee’s heart and all the anger was gone immediately. He got on his knees next to her and took her hands in his.
“Ali, did you take your pills?” It killed him to ask that again and again. He knew she hated when he always blamed every problem on her disease.
“I did, Lee, I swear. Maybe ... Maybe these new pills from Dr. Cottle aren’t helping? Please don’t be mad.” She started crying silently. Lee couldn’t take this any longer. He put his arms around her and pulled her close to him in a tight embrace.
“Daddy!” He could hear his daughter calling from the next room. She was obviously done playing with her doll.
He looked at Alicia intensely. “I’ll go to the mess with Nia and then I will talk to Cottle. Do you think you’ll be alright until I get back?” He asked worried.
Alicia just nodded her head slightly without looking up. “I’m not done here anyway.” She said in a small voice.
Lee swallowed hard. Then he got up and quickly changed into his uniform. “Come on, pumpkin, we’re going to get something to eat now.” He had to smile at his daughter’s laughter. But his smile quickly faded again when his thoughts went back to his wife.
On his way to the mess he ran into Petty Officer Dualla.
“Good Morning, Captain. I was just on my way to you.” She said, smiling widely at his daughter.
“Good Morning, Dee. What can I do for you?” He just hoped there wasn’t another problem. He really didn’t have time for this.
“The President has scheduled a meeting concerning the water crisis. She asked you to participate. Your shuttle leaves in one hour, Sir.” She told him, still smiling at his daughter.
‘Frak’ Lee thought. This whole Military Advisor Thing was already coming back to him at the most inconvenient time. He suddenly noticed the way Dualla kept smiling at Nia. Maybe there was a solution for at least one of his problems.
“Uhm Dee, when do you get off duty?” He asked, trying to look innocently.
“In half an hour, Sir. Why?” She replied slightly confused.
“How much do you like Babysitting, Petty Officer?”
Fortunately Dee had been delighted to watch Nia for a few hours. Lee had been extremely grateful that she hadn’t asked any questions. So after he had had breakfast with his daughter he had brought Nia to Dualla’s quarters. She shared a bunkroom with several other officers and it was surely not the best place for Nia to be but he didn’t want to leave her alone with Alicia for now. And he couldn’t take her with him to an official meeting with the President. He had quickly explained the change of plan to Alicia before he left for the shuttle. She had still been busy with cleaning the bathroom. He was deeply worried about her and hoped that the meeting wouldn’t take too long. He really needed to talk to Doc Cottle soon.
A surprised Adama looked at Lee when he approached the Raptor to Colonial One.
“Good Morning, Captain. Is there a problem?” He asked his son.
“Uhm, no, Sir. The President asked me to participate in the meeting.” Lee looked slightly uncomfortable.
“And why is that?” Adama asked confused.
Lee hesitated a moment. He had really hoped for a better moment to tell his father about his new job. “I’m her new ... military advisor. You know; explain all this military stuff to her that she doesn’t know about. It’s not a big deal, really. She offered me the job yesterday and I didn’t have a chance to tell you about it yet.” Lee stammered. He could see his father get angrier with every word he said.
“We spent the whole evening together yesterday. That would have been a good opportunity, don’t you think?” He asked, fury clearly visible in his eyes.
“Uhm, well, that was family dinner right? Nothing work related ...” Lee replied lamely. He was relieved when Boomer told them to step onto the Raptor as they were ready to launch any minute now. This was going to be a very unpleasant meeting.
The meeting was even worse than Lee had expected. His father was already angry about him working for the President now, but when Lee had suggested using the prisoners from the Astral Queen to get the water out from under the ice he had looked furious. Roslin was against slave labour, so Adama had suggested the use of freedom points for their work. If the prisoners had enough points, they would get released and transferred to one of the civilian ships. Lee was supposed to talk to the prisoners about that which made Adama even more furious and he even went so far as to suggest that he wanted another member of his crew to accompany Lee: someone who would report directly to him. As if Lee wasn’t trustworthy anymore. And then Billy had to suggest Dee to be that person. Lee could have strangled him for that. Now he would have to find a new babysitter for Nia. He seriously doubted that Alicia was feeling better by now.
“Something on your mind, Captain?” Adama interrupted Lee’s thoughts. They had both been walking in silence next to each other for some time now after they had come back to Galactica.
“I just thought maybe you had something you wanted to say.” Lee came directly to the point. He didn’t have the interest or the time to play games with his father.
“I have nothing to say to the personal representative of the President.” Adama replied quietly, but in an agitated voice.
Lee let out a frustrated sigh. “I’m still Galactica’s lead pilot.” He said looking determinedly at his father.
Finally Adama stopped walking and looked at his son. “Well, I have nothing to say to him either. Every man has to decide for himself which side he’s on.”
Lee let out a short harsh laugh. “I didn’t know we were picking sides.” He said to his father in an angry voice. Then he quickly walked past him and turned around the corner.
Thoughtfully Adama looked in the direction Lee had left. “That’s why you haven’t picked one yet.” He said quietly. Then he left for the opposite direction.
Frustrated, Lee walked along the corridor. He figured it wouldn’t be such a good idea to ask his father now if he would like to baby-sit Nia for some hours. Sadly he thought of the dinner last night. It had felt so good to be close to his father again. He should have known that it wouldn’t last long. He and his father had never gotten along very well. Why should that change now? Sighing he went on his way to sickbay to talk to Cottle about his wife.
“Good Morning, Captain. What can I do for you?” Cottle greeted Lee when he entered sickbay.
“Good Morning, Doctor. It’s about Alicia. I don’t think the pills you gave her are helping.” Lee said directly. By now he found it much easier to talk to Cottle about Alicia. He had always hated the fact to let strangers know about his personal affairs. Even when these strangers were medical doctors and supposed to help him.
“What happened?” Cottle wanted to know.
Quietly Lee explained how Alicia had acted this morning.
“She’s been taking these pills for two days now. Have you noticed any strange behaviour in her before this morning?” Cottle asked.
“No, not at all.” Lee replied. “In fact she was more than fine yesterday. I haven’t seen her so happy in a long time. She laughed and talked so much and ...” Then it hit Lee. “I’m such an Idiot.” Helplessly he looked at Cottle.
“Those were probably the first signs. In their manic periods people often seem to be more alive and content with themselves than usual. It’s often hard to notice that at first as manic behaviour.” Cottle explained.
“What should I do now?” Lee asked. He hated the fact that he had no idea how to help his own wife.
“I would like to talk to her, run some blood tests. Maybe she just needs a higher dosage.” Cottle replied.
“Okay, I’ll bring her here. Uhm, would it be possible if she stayed here for a few hours? I have to leave the ship and I don’t want her to be alone any longer ... At least not now.” Lee said quietly.
Cottle thought about that for a moment. “That shouldn’t be a problem. What about your daughter? This is sickbay, not a kindergarten,” he pointedly reminded Lee.
“I’ll figure something out. Thanks Doc.”
On his way back to his quarters Lee thought about what to do with Nia. There weren’t many people on the Galactic he knew well enough to entrust with his daughter. He obviously couldn’t ask his father. And with Dee leaving for the Astral Queen with him that left only Sharon and Kara. He thought about asking Sharon. He wasn’t exactly friends with her but since they had been both practically stranded on Colonial One the day of the attack they had got to know each other a bit more. And she had already taken it on herself to look after the boy she picked up on Caprica during the attacks. Taking care of Nia for a few hours shouldn’t be so difficult then for her. Then he remembered that Boomer still had patrol for the next three hours. That left only Kara. He had never really seen her as a children person. But he had no other choice.
When he finally stepped into his quarters again he found Alicia busy repositioning the little furniture they had.
“Ali, hi ... What are you doing?” He asked slightly confused.
“Oh hi. I’m trying to redecorate the room. I don’t have much to work with but I thought that if I put the bed here and the table over here it would look much better, don’t you think?” Expectantly Alicia looked at Lee.
“Uhm, yeah. Sure. Listen, why don’t you leave that for later. Doc Cottle wants to run some tests with you. To get a better medication.”
“I don’t need a better medication. These pills he gave me are just fine. I already feel much better.” Alicia assured him and went back to moving the bed.
Sighing Lee walked over to his wife and carefully grabbed her by the arm. He wanted her to concentrate on him when he talked to her right now. “Ali, look at me. ... That’s exactly the problem. You only think you’re feeling better. This morning you didn’t even hear your own daughter crying.” It broke his heart to talk to her like this. But again he had no other choice.
“But I ...” Helplessly Alicia looked at Lee.
“Let’s go to sickbay, okay? You can finish this later. We can do it together then, okay?” Lee said quietly.
Confused Alicia looked around the room. She didn’t feel sick. But Lee seemed really worried. And she didn’t want him to worry about her. So she finally agreed to go talk to Cottle.
After he had brought his wife to sickbay, Lee went to Dee to pick up his daughter. He still wasn’t sure if it was such a good idea to leave Nia with Kara. But he was running out of options.
Nia was excited to see her father. She had had fun playing with Dee but she was always glad to be with her father again. Lee felt as happy to see his daughter again. It still amazed him how much he loved his little girl. He never thought it would be possible to have such strong feelings for a person.
“We had a great time. I’m sorry I can’t watch her any longer. Should you ever need a babysitter again, just let me know. I can’t think of a better way to spend my off time.” Dee beamed of joy when she handed Lee his daughter.
“Thanks. I really appreciate that.” Lee said gratefully.
“Are you bringing her back to your wife now?” Dee asked. She had already wondered what could have hindered Nia’s mother to watch her own daughter these last few hours.
“Uh, no, she’s still not feeling so well. I thought I’d asked Kara.” Lee replied evasively.
“Starbuck?” Dee called out surprised. “You want to ask Starbuck to baby-sit your daughter?”
Sighing Lee looked at Dee. “I don’t have many other options, I’m afraid.”
Dee was still laughing when Lee stepped out into the corridor and walked away to Kara’s bunkroom. Dee’s reaction hadn’t been very encouraging.
“Hey Starbuck, you have a minute?” Lee called out for his friend. He was relieved to find her alone in her bunkroom.
“Sure, what’s up? Hey Nia.” She smiled lovingly at the little girl on Lee’s arms. “Are you spending some time with your Daddy?”
“Yes...” Nia laughed at Kara.
Relieved Lee noticed that Kara seemed to be very fond of his daughter. “Actually I thought you could spend some time with her.” He carefully told her.
“What?” Confused, Kara looked up at him.
“I need to get over to the Astral Queen and convince the prisoners help us melting the ice. This is going to take some time and I need a babysitter for Nia.” Lee explained.
“What about Alicia?”
“She ... she’s not feeling so well. Cottle is running some tests on her. So, are you gonna help me?” Lee looked at her hopefully.
“Lee, I’ve never been alone with a kid. I don’t know what to do.” Kara looked at him slightly terrified.
“Oh, you’ll be fine. Just get her something to eat – real food, no candy or anything, play with her and her doll, make up some games – child games, don’t teach her any nasty words ... It’s easy, really.” Lee assured her.
“I don’t know, Lee. I would really love to help you, but ...”
“Thanks, Kara. You’re the best.” Lee interrupted her quickly. Before Kara could say another word, he had kissed his daughter goodbye and handed her over to Kara. She was too stunned to do anything about it. And before she got all her senses back together Lee had already left the room.
“If you need anything, call me on the Astral Queen.” He called back before he quickly walked away. He was still worried if this would work out. But he would be back soon. If he was lucky, he would already be back in an hour or two and could take care of Nia himself again.
He should have known he wouldn’t be so lucky. Two hours later Lee found himself beaten up on the bridge of the Astral Queen, hurting all over. He had known something was wrong when Tom Zarek, convicted terrorist, had stepped out of his cell and all the prisoners had started calling out his name. He had thought it would be a smart idea to convince Zarek to help them and that the prisoners would follow him. Well, they did follow him, but not the way Lee had intended. They had started a riot and taken all non-prisoners hostage. Lee had been stupid enough to think he could stop them. The result was that his whole body was sore and he had a pounding headache. He really had no chance when ten or more prisoners had pounced on him. Now he was sitting on the Astral Queen’s bridge and listened as Zarek tried to contact the Galactica.
“They won’t negotiate while you’re holding hostages.” He told Zarek. He hoped the others were okay. He had neither seen them nor heard them since he woke up on the bridge.
“I don’t want to negotiate.” Zarek replied smugly.
“Then what do you want?” Lee asked.
“To be treated like men, not animals. To finally have something to bargain with.” Zarek answered.
“So, what happens now?” Lee wanted to know. He just hoped Zarek didn’t plan on killing them all just to make an example. Kara would probably drag him back from the afterlife and kill him again several times for leaving her alone with Nia for so long. He wasn’t really sure how much time had passed since he stepped aboard the Astral Queen as he had been unconscious for a while but he suspected it was longer than two hours.
“We’re gonna talk.” Zarek told him.
“Your father.” Zarek answered. Lee gave him a surprised look. Then Zarek started asking him lots of questions about his father, his opinions, his relationship with the president. He obviously liked the fact that Lee worked as a personal representative for the president as well as being Galactica’s CAG.
One of Zarek’s men had finally been able to get out a transmission and called Zarek over to let Galactica know what he wanted. At least Lee had thought Zarek was going to try and contact Galactica. He was surprised to find out however, that Zarek was going to hold a fleet-wide speech. He spoke about the freedom of the people, about masters and slaves before he came to the point of this whole hostage situation. When he started explaining his conditions for releasing the prisoners – the resignation of Laura Roslin and an election for a new government – Lee shook his head in frustration. Zarek was clearly crazy. This was not the time to elect a new government. They had just survived a holocaust and were still being chased by the Cylons. They were in the middle of a water crisis. People would start dying in a day or two. And this man was talking about elections.
When Zarek had ended his transmission he noticed Lee shaking his head in disbelieve over Zarek’s words. Angrily he walked over to Lee.
“Who voted for Laura Roslin? You? Did you vote for her?” He asked Lee in an agitated voice.
“She was sworn in under the law ...”
“The answer is: No one voted for her. No one!” Zarek interrupted him. “And yet she’s making decisions for all of us, deciding who lives and who dies. Is that ... Is that democracy? Is that a free society?” Zarek got more agitated with every word.
“What is it you want from me? You want me to say she shouldn’t be President? We need a government. We need rules. We need a leader.” Lee tried to persuade Zarek. But he could read in Zarek eyes that he might as well be talking to a wall for all Zarek was listening.
“We need to be free men and women. If we’re not free, then we’re no different than Cylons!” Zarek took a deep breath and tried to calm himself down again. “They call you Apollo?” Zarek looked at him with an arched brow.
“It’s my call sign.” Lee explained, confused over the sudden change of subject.
“Apollo’s one of the Gods, a Lord of Kobol. You must be a very special man to be called a god.”
“It’s just a stupid nickname.” Lee replied impatiently.
“Son of Zeus. Good with a bow, God of a hunt ... and also a God of healing. Now, a God can reconcile those two opposing forces. But a mortal has to pick one side or the other. Have you picked a side, Apollo?” Zarek looked at him expectantly.
Lee let out a frustrated sigh. This was the second time today that someone asked him to pick a side. Why was it so hard to understand that he could easily serve both sides? The military and the civilian government?
Suddenly Zarek was called back to the comm. The Galactica had finally answered to Zarek’s transmission.
“Zeus is calling.” Zarek told Lee with a devilish smile.
Lee couldn’t hear much of the conversation but he could imagine what was said. Neither his father nor President Roslin would ever agree to Zarek’s conditions. He had a feeling this would end badly.
Zarek came back to talk again to Lee. Again they got into a heated discussion. Lee suddenly realized that Zarek never had anticipated his conditions to be fulfilled. He wanted Adama to storm the Astral Queen and start a bloodbath. Zarek wanted to die as a martyr.
Suddenly Zarek was called away. Apparently there was some problem with the hostages. Quickly Zarek ran out of the room, followed closely by Lee. When they reached one of the cells Lee saw that Cally, a member of Tyrol’s deck crew who Adama had chosen to accompany Lee on this mission, lay shot on the cot inside the cell. One of the prisoners was holding a gun in her direction while he was holding on to his ear that was bleeding strongly. He kept screaming that Cally had bitten of his ear.
“Open the door, she’s been shot.” Lee demanded while Zarek tried to calm down the prisoner, Mason he called him.
“You said that you weren’t animals, what do you call this?” Lee yelled angrily. “He’s gonna kill her. Do something.”
Finally Zarek, who had tried to reason with Mason the whole time, turned around to Lee. “You did this; you put him in a cage! You made him a monster.” He screamed at Lee. He was starting to loose control over the situation.
Mason looked as if he would shoot Cally any second now.
“He’s gonna do it!” Lee called out. When Zarek didn’t react he had enough. He couldn’t just stand by and watch this man murder Cally. He quickly attacked the man standing next to him and managed to grab his gun. He immediately shot down Mason and then quickly pointed the gun to Zarek’s head. Slowly he forced him to kneel down.
“How about it, Tom? You still have a death wish? You ready to leave this world, right here, right now?” Lee asked angry, still pointing the gun towards Zarek.
“Too bad.” Lee went on. “Cause this is what you’re gonna do. You’re gonna tell your men to help us get that water off the moon. They’re gonna work for their points and they’re gonna earn their freedom, and then ... then ... you’re gonna get your elections.”
“What?” Zarek gasped in astonishment.
“Cause you’re right Tom.” Lee couldn’t believe himself over the fact that he actually agreed with this terrorist on something. ”You were right about democracy and consent of the people. I believe in those things and we’re gonna have them. And you can have them too. Or you can have this bullet. Your call.” Determinedly Lee held the gun even closer to Zarek’s head.
“How do I know your father and the President will honour your word?” Zarek asked in disbelief.
“You don’t. You let the rest of the hostages go, we’ll leave this ship in your hands. They try and come after you, you can still have your last stand. It’s your choice. You reap what you sow.” With his last words Lee repeated what Zarek had told him earlier on the bridge.
He was surprised that Zarek actually agreed to this deal. He didn’t think that his words would have any effect on Zarek but apparently he was not as crazy as Lee had thought.
When Zarek motioned his men to lower their guns, Lee opened the cell door and quickly went over to Cally.
“Okay, Cally, you’re gonna be okay. You just hang in there, you hear?” He tried to calm her. Suddenly he saw a red laser point directed on Zarek’s head. The marines must have found them. Quickly Lee jumped up and pulled Zarek out of the way only seconds before the first shot could be heard.
“Cease fire! Cease fire!” He called out loudly. Then he looked back down at Zarek to check if he was hit. Fortunately the bullet had missed him.
“Thanks.” Zarek said quietly, still shocked by what had happened only seconds before.
Lee chose to ignore him for the moment and turned back to Cally who seemed even paler than before.
“I need a medic here.” He shouted.
A few minutes later he watched as Cally was put on a stretcher and carried away. Then he saw Kara walking towards him, steaming of fury.
“What the hell did you think you were doing just then?” She yelled at him.
“Where is Nia?” Lee asked instead of giving an answer.
“I asked Sharon to watch her. Don’t change the subject. Why did you save the bastard?”
“Sharon is on patrol, Kara!” Lee said angrily.
“No, she’s not. Her patrol ended hours ago. Have you lost your mind completely? That guy held you all as hostages, threatened to kill you, almost got Cally killed and you save his frakking life?”
“Oh ...” Was all Lee said. He hadn’t even heard Kara’s last tirade. He was just relieved to find his daughter in good hands. He hadn’t even realized how much time had passed since he stepped onboard the Astral Queen. His thoughts suddenly drifted to Alicia. Cottle had promised him to keep her busy in sickbay for some time but he had been longer away than expected. He had to get back and look after her. Without saying another word to Kara he quickly walked past her.
“Hey, are you even listening to me? Where are you going?” Kara yelled after him. When he didn’t respond she quickly followed him.
“Where are you going?” She asked again as she caught up with him.
“Back to Galactica.” Lee replied.
“Oh really? And why the haste all of the sudden?” Kara asked sarcastically.
“I need to check something in sickbay.”
“You’re worried about Cally, right?” Kara asked sympathising.
“No ... I mean, yeah, of course I’m worried about her.” Lee said evasively.
“Don’t worry. She’s a tough girl, she’ll pull through this. You’ll see, in two days she’s back working.” Kara assured him.
“Yeah, I’m sure she will.” Lee said. He hadn’t even really listened to what Kara was saying.
When Lee entered sickbay he looked anxiously for Cottle or his wife. He knew that Cottle must still be busy working on Cally but he really needed to talk to him. He needed to know what was wrong with Alicia. And it worried him immensely that she was nowhere to be seen.
“Captain Adama, why don’t you wait over there? Doctor Cottle will see to you as soon as he has time.” A nurse had approached Lee and showed him the direction to a nearby bed.
“No, I’m not here as a patient.” Lee corrected her. “I’m here so see my wife.”
“Oh yes, Mrs. Adama. She’s still sedated and deep asleep. Some of your wounds really look serious. You should get them checked by the Doctor. You can see your wife right after that.” The nurse told Lee.
He just looked at her in shock. “Sedated? Why is she sedated? She was just here for some blood tests!” He could feel the panic starting to rise within him.
“Oh, uhm, you really should talk to the Doctor. I’ll ...”
“Where is my wife?” Lee interrupted the suddenly nervous nurse. He gave her his best Adama glare, so she finally showed Lee the direction where he could find Alicia.
Worriedly Lee approached Alicia’s bed. He was shocked at her fragile appearance. She seemed almost lifeless as she just lay there before him. The only sign that she was still alive was her regular breathing. He stood frozen before her, not able to move or even take her hand. How could this have happened? She was just supposed to get some tests.
Suddenly Alicia began to stir slightly and her eyes fluttered open. Tired and numb she looked at him.
“Lee?” She was hardly audible and seemed to have trouble staying awake.
Quickly Lee moved closer to her and finally took her hand into his. “I’m here, Ali. It’s okay. What happened?”
“I’m sorry, Lee. ... This is not how we planned things...” Her already weak voice broke and her eyes closed again.
Desperately Lee kept looking at her, holding her hand, willing her to wake up one more time, so he could tell her that everything would be all right again. Suddenly he felt a soft hand on his shoulder. He knew exactly who that hand belonged to. Slowly he turned around and found Kara standing next to him.
“What happened?” She asked in a quiet voice. Lee had seldom seen her so calm. It was funny how when one of them was on the verge of falling apart the other was always there to give comfort.
“I don’t know. I’m waiting for Cottle. He’s still in OR with Cally.” Lee replied in a devastated voice.
“Is there anything I can do?” Kara asked.
Lee seemed to think about that for a while. Seeing Alicia like that made it hard for him to get a clear mind. “Someone has to pick up Nia. She should be in bed by now.” He said after a moment. The sad look in his eyes almost broke Kara’s heart. She would have done anything right now to make him feel better.
“No problem. I’ll get her from Sharon and put her in bed. We actually got along pretty well before I had to leave. To save your ass again, I might add.” She grinned at him. It made her heart swell with joy when she saw Lee smiling at her last comment. It was only a small smile and it faded as quickly as it had appeared but it meant the world to Kara. “So, you don’t need to worry about her.” She assured him with a warm smile.
“Thanks.” Lee replied grateful.
“Anytime.” With that, Kara turned around and left sickbay.
Two hours later Cottle finally came to Alicia’s bed. Questioningly Lee looked at him.
Cottle didn’t skirt around the issue and came right to the point. “When she heard about the hostage situation, she ... well, to say it blunt, she freaked out. She started to get aggressive, so we had to sedate her. I found it best to keep her like this until you returned. I’d also like to keep her here overnight.” He explained quietly.
Before Lee could respond to this, he was called over the PA-speaker to report to the President on Colonial One. Sighing he looked at Cottle.
“Don’t worry. She’ll be fine here. But before you go I’d like to check on those wounds of yours. You look pretty beaten up.”
“I’m fine.” Lee tried to object but was immediately interrupted by Cottle.
“You’re not fine. And besides, do you really want to step in front of the President with all that blood on your face?” He cocked an eyebrow at Lee. When Lee realized that he was still covered in blood, he just shook his head at Cottle.
“I didn’t think so.” Cottle commented dryly before examining the man in front of him, who kept shooting worried glances at the sleeping form of his wife.
When Lee finally stepped onto the Raptor to Colonial One his father was already waiting. He had apparently kept himself busy going over some reports.
“Sorry, I’m late. Cottle wanted to check me up before I leave.” Lee explained. He wanted to tell his father about Alicia but somehow he couldn’t bring himself to say the right words. His father had been furious with him this morning and the fact that Lee’s idea about using the prisoners as workers had backfired in such a bad way probably hadn’t lightened his mood.
“Are you all right, son?” Adama looked worried at the bruises that were clearly visible on Lee’s face.
“Just some cuts and bruises ...” His voice trailed off. His father seemed to have calmed down a bit. Maybe he had really been worried for Lee these past few hours? It was kind of hard to imagine. But even though Adama was calmer now, Lee knew that as soon as he told his father the details of his deal with Zarek he would be even more furious than this morning. He had already been more than angry when Lee had told him over the phone that he had given up the ship to the prisoners. His father hadn’t said much at the time but Lee had practically seen his icy glare over the phone. Their relationship just got better and better, Lee thought cynically.
“How is Cally doing?” Adama asked.
“She’ll be fine. Doc said she’s out of danger.” Lee replied. Cottle had told him about Cally’s condition while he had examined Lee.
“That’s good to know. She’s a tough girl.” Adama was visibly relieved. He had always considered every member of his crew as part of the family. Unfortunately Lee still didn’t feel to be a part of that.
A short time later Lee sat in the President’s Office on Colonial One and waited for the expected outburst of his father and Roslin. He had just explained his deal with Zarek and none of them looked too happy about it.
“I don’t believe this.” Roslin exclaimed shocked.
“It’s unacceptable.” Adama stated. Both of them shot angry and disbelieving looks in Lee’s direction.
“It’s done. Prisoners have full control over the Astral Queen. We evacuated all the guards and support personnel. It’s their ship.” Lee explained again. He had managed to do that much before he had headed to sickbay to see after Alicia.
“They’re a threat to the entire fleet!” Adama hissed. He couldn’t believe his son had agreed to this. No, not agreed, Adama thought angry, suggested it himself even.
“They’ve been disarmed. The ship has no weapons.” Lee said determinedly. Why didn’t they understand that this had been their only option?
“The ship itself is a weapon.” Adama called out.
Lee sighed frustrated. “They’re totally dependent on us for food, fuel and they’ve agreed to organise the workforce for the water detail on the moon.”
“You’ve committed me to holding elections within the year.” Roslin said infuriated.
“Madam President, with respect, you’re serving out the remainder of President Adar’s term. When that term is up in seven month, the law says there’s an election. I only committed you to obeying the law.” Lee looked at her determinedly.
“You are not authorised to make any deal ...”
“You sound like some kind of lawyer ...” Roslin and Adama both began exclaiming angrily.
“I swore an oath ... to defend the articles.” Lee interrupted them. “The articles say there’s an election in seven month. Now, if you’re telling me we’re throwing out the law, then I’m not a Captain, you’re not a Commander and you are not the President. And I don’t owe either of you a damned explanation for anything.”
For a few moments there was complete silence as both Adama and Roslin looked stunned at Lee.
“He’s your son.” Roslin finally said to Adama with an arched eyebrow.
“He’s your advisor.” Adama looked fuming at Lee.
“An election ...” Roslin said thoughtfully.
Adama had enough. He started to walk out of the room. When he came past Lee he stopped for a second. “I guess you finally picked your side.” He hissed. Then he shortly turned back to the president “Madam President.” And without another word he left the room.
Swallowing Lee tried to regain his composure. Those last words of his father had hurt more than he was willing to admit. He knew his father felt betrayed by him. When he found his voice would sound steady enough again he turned to the president and excused himself before he left the room after his father.
Even though his father had finally seemed to accept the deal Lee made with Zarek he still refused to speak a single word with Lee. They had already waited some time to board their Raptor when they were told they had to wait another 30 minutes before they could leave for Galactica as there seemed to be a problem with their Raptor. Standing next to his silent father for the next half hour wasn’t really what Lee wanted to do right now. He needed something to do or otherwise his thoughts would drift back to Alicia. He couldn’t wait to get back to Galactica.
He had one last glance at his father and decided to go back to the President. He could give her the chance to fire him from his advisor job. He figured she probably wasn’t very satisfied with him anymore. Also it was important to him to make her understand that he hadn’t meant to betray her. Or his father, but explaining that to him wouldn’t make much sense right now. So he would start with the President.
When he had knocked on her door he was slightly shocked to see that she was already wearing a robe. She had probably been to bed already. For the second time this day he had totally lost track of time and was surprised how late it already was.
“I’m sorry. I can come back.” He said quickly.
“No, it’s all right, uh, come on in.” Roslin replied calmly.
Hesitantly Lee stepped into the room. “I just wanted to say goodbye before I head back to Galactica. And to tell you, I hope you understand I wasn’t being disloyal, Madam President.”
Roslin smiled at him warmly. “I understand, you’re upholding the law. I admire it.”
“I believe in you ... and what you’re doing.” Lee went on. He was relieved that the President understood his reasons. “And for what it’s worth, seven month from now, you’ll have my vote.”
Suddenly Roslin’s smile faded and she looked very exhausted all of the sudden. “Could you sit? There’s something I need to tell you.” The sad look that crossed her face made Lee worry. After they had both sat down Roslin went on. “The truth is, I might not be here in seven month.”
Lee looked at her slightly confused. “Are you planning a vacation?” He asked smiling.
Roslin sighed. “I wish. I told your father I ... had allergies, but I have cancer. I found out the morning of the attack.”
Lee felt like he had been hit to the stomach. “I’m so sorry, Madam President. I ... I don’t know what to say ...” His voice trailed of.
“I understand. I’m going to fight this, but there is a great need for secrecy.” Roslin looked willingly at Lee.
“Of course.” He quickly replied. He really was at a loss of words. After all that happened today he didn’t think he could bear any more bad news. And this was a lot worse than just bad news. The situation with Alicia was already bad enough but the President ... Lee had always seen her as one of the strongest people he knew. For some reason she even reminded him of his mother. And know she had told him she would probably be dead in a few months.
“Whether or not I survive this illness, it is of great importance to me that there is a future for the people. And I fear that knowledge of my illness will erode hope, so this has to stay between you and me.”
“You can count on me.” Lee assured her.
“I know I can ... You’re Captain Apollo.” She gave him a warm smile. And despite the sick feeling that was spreading in Lee’s stomach he had to smile back at her.
When Lee finally returned to Galactica he felt too exhausted to go back to sickbay. Alicia would probably still be asleep. There was nothing he could do for her now. And even though he had wanted nothing more these last two hours when he had been away from Galactica than to be with Alicia again, now he just wanted to see his daughter and hold on to her for a while. Right now she seemed to be the only good thing in his life.
When he stepped into his office he found both Nia and Kara deep asleep. Nia was tucked in her bed and Kara had fallen asleep on the couch. Lee had to smile at the picture in front of him. He had never seen Kara look so peaceful before. Maybe Nia wasn’t the only good thing in his life after all. Still smiling he got a blanket from the bed and gently put it over Kara’s sleeping body.
“Oh hey ...” Kara mumbled in a sleepy voice, eyes only half open. “I should go ...”
“No, just stay. It’s already late. You can stay the night here if you want.” Lee told her quietly.
“Okay, thanks.” She gave him a small smile before she fell asleep again.
Lee watched her thoughtfully for a short while before he went over to his daughter to check on her. She looked as peaceful in her sleep as Kara had. He sat down next to the bed and watched his daughter sleep. Back on Caprica he had used to do this for hours. He could never get enough of his little girl. To see her like this had always given him the feeling that everything would be all right again, no matter how messed up things were at the time. And again she gave him that feeling now. Lee suddenly felt more relaxed then he had in a long time, even despite his sore and hurting body and the facts that is wife lay currently in sickbay and the President just told him she would die of cancer. Tiredly he closed his eyes and fell into a deep sleep.