All My BurdenMature

The UEES Scipio is a Bengal class carrier. She carries thirty six fighters and eight bombers, and all the men and women to keep her going. This is their story.

It was beautiful, Terra’s blue sphere stretching out before him, bordered only by the white crescent of atmosphere; a fingernail digging into the velvet expanse of space beyond. He immediately thought of his daughter Rachel, who had always wanted to see it the way he was at this very moment, hundreds of kilometers above the ocean and land. 

“Sir, I have the new manifest.”  

The voice pulled him from his reverie. Michael turned from the window, its edges fogged with condensation. “Thank you Geoff. Leave it on the table.”

“It’s on the Glas, and I also sent a copy to your inbox just in case.”  

Michael nodded.

Geoff sighed. “A lot of new blood Sir.”

“As expected.” 

Geoff stood facing him, straightening himself to attention somewhat awkwardly.

“Forget the formalities Geoff, you’re my First Officer now, we can reserve those for the nasty business of disciplinary action. Unless of course you have something to confess.” Michael said, a wry grin tugging at the corner of his mouth.

“No Captain, nothing to report.”

“Good, then I’ll see you later.”

“Yes sir.” Geoff said, retreating from the Captain’s ready room.

Michael took in a deep breath and willed himself to pick up the Glas. With it in his hands, he returned to the window. Again, the sprawling oceans mesmerized him, and he peered into their deep waters until suddenly he caught his reflection in the window. Before him, stood a wrinkled man with sunken eyes and retreating white hair. His brow furrowed and the old flesh folded in between grey bushy eyebrows. Deep blue eyes, as deep and blue as the oceans of Terra Nova, dropped to the Glas in his hands. “So many Lieutenant’s” He thought. “So many young men and women.” 

“All my burden.”

The End

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