Categories > TV > Battlestar Galactica > Battlestar Galactica: Homecomings

Chapter Three

by Treadstone17 0 reviews

Chapter Three

Category: Battlestar Galactica - Rating: R - Genres: Sci-fi - Published: 2017-06-22 - 5416 words - Complete


Starbuck and her Raptor crew delivered the unconscious prisoner to the Adama. He'd be medically checked out, and when he came to, would be fed, then grilled for information on what The Fleet was up against.

Her father had arrived back on the ship just after she had started her SAR mission, and since he had been up all night, he had been sleeping. Kara called her mother in their VIP quarters, asking how her father was.

"He's pretty tired, Kara", Judy Bond said honestly, "He was very wound up all night and just couldn't close his eyes. He's been asleep for about five hours, and I was planning to wake him soon."

"Any nightmares today?"

"Part of me would have expected one, after all the craziness surrounding Nick, but he's slept like a baby." For which Judith was extremely grateful.

"OK, when he wakes up, he'll want to know we have a prisoner, and as soon as he's awake and alert, we're going to try to get information out of him." Starbuck could almost feel the alarm in her mother over the phone line. She had told her parents long ago about her interrogation of Leoben on the Gemenon Traveller, how she had tortured him, and how Laura Roslin had killed him.

"Mom", she said, almost with a smile, "Trust me, we don't torture people anymore. We stopped that crap a long time ago, and I wouldn't stand for it now, anyway."

"I know, Kara", she said sadly, "and I know times were different during the flight to Earth, but it's something I was worried about."

"I understand, Mom. And I know dad wouldn't tolerate it either, so rest easy."

Judith Bond remembered the events of earlier that morning, "Oh, I almost forgot, when you father is awake, and before you take him to do official business, I need both of you here", she tried to stay calm, "there were some...developments overnight that Abby and I were made aware of, and we need to make you aware of them, too."

"Developments?", Kara asked genuinely confused, "concerning what, mom?"

"That will wait until you get here and dad's awake. This is something we have to talk about in person."

The Admiral trusted her mother with her life, and, confused or not, assented, "OK Mom, let me know when's he's up and about and I'll make my way over there."

By nightfall on Canceron, Captain Mathers, General Trevor, and their scout teams were within about five miles of Hades. They still had not encountered a soul, but Sundown had a feeling they were being watched.

When this half of The Fleet had landed on Aerilon, they had been cautious. Here, in the Norther Continent, they had come loaded for bear, knowing the history behind Hades and the Norther people, who were known to be ruffians by trade. The city had a population, just before The Holocaust, of roughly twenty-five million people, being one of five cities of that size in the Norther. It had been a dirty, oppressive, rough-hewn place, where there wasn't much law outside the Colonial Hall of Justice, which had been used primarily to move prisoners to or from the planet. It had been governed by a street mentality and not much else.

They expected to encounter that if and when they found survivors of The Holocaust.

Trevor had them bivouac for the evenings, with Sentries posted to their front, and with plenty of portable lighting in and surrounding the encampment. They would try to sleep, but it wouldn't be easy, and they knew it.

At sunrise the next morning, which was actually about 0130 Fleet Standard Time on this world, they prepared to move out for the day. There would be Raptors covering them overhead, and just in front of their movement Northward, looking for any trouble. CAG's had been specifically assigned to the ground formation at least for the first scouting mission. It would give them a different perspective of the lay of the land, and it was felt that would help in planning when the full-scale scouting missions began. That had worked well on Aerilon, so they were following the script here.

After about two hours of cautious but steady forward movement, the city that was still far off when they had camped the night before, began to reveal itself to the troops. Unlike Goath, this place was absolutely massive. It was more the size of Shanghai, or Mexico City, not like a medium-sized town back on Earth. The city stretched across the horizon from one end to the other.

On Aerilon, they had begun with forty Companies of scout teams, comprised of thirteen soldiers each. On Canceron, there were two hundred Companies, and that massive size couldn't even encompass the length of the city. They were tense, but they knew they had a job to do, and they would see it through.

Captain Nicholas Bond had been holed up for a few days in the empty cave he had found. He ventured out only at night, using the survival skills that had been drilled into his brain during intense survival training. He moved mostly at night. Again, with such long days, he was forced to do some movement, but he was cautious about doing so.

He had found creatures like ants and other bugs to snack on, to keep his food rations stretched out. Part of the training had been a thorough indoctrination of the plant and animal life on each planet. Every soldier had a large binder that carried information on each planet-what could be eaten, what couldn't; what kind of small animals might wander by that would make for a good meal, cooked only during daylight hours to draw less attention. They had even been taught how to keep smoke at a minimum from any fires they might need.

He hadn't had to resort to critters yet, but the ants and other insects were actually full of nutrition that could keep him going, even if he had to eat more than a few of them. He still had some rations. The bug variety were just in-between meal snacks at this time.

Dusk was starting to approach, and he was becoming more awake. This night, he had planned to move Westward to find new shelter and hoped that would bring him closer to rescue. Even after studying the cycles of each day on the planets, and where the sun or suns rose and set, it was hard to get oriented. When one was used to dawn in the East, and Dusk in the West, it could throw you off. That was another reason he hadn't moved for a few days, simply to orient himself with the planet.

"Even money Kara is up there in a Raptor", he said quietly, knowing how protective his older sister was of he and Abby. Even though he was in his early forties now, she still took her duties as the oldest sibling with incredible devotion. "Hell, I wouldn't be surprised if Dad tried to jump in a cockpit. That's my old man", he said with a sad smile.

The sun finally went down. He got up, first moving to conceal the fact that anyone had been in the cave recently, and then made sure he had all his gear. And then he set out in a Southwesterly direction. As he was walking, another thought passed through his mind, Natalie must be going through hell, which made him even more determined to get out of this fix.

Justin Bond awoke after about six hours and felt refreshed. He had slept soundly, with no nightmares about Kara or about Nick, and was feeling as good as he had felt since Kara had told them the news about Nick's Raptor.

Judith Bond had seen him coming around and asked Kara and Abby to be to their quarters in about thirty minutes. Brett had work to do within the fleet, as he was head of Government Outreach and Assistance, so Abby would have to bring Katraine along. Katraine was going on nine now, and she was in school. But school was out for the day, and Abby had taken her daughter with her on the Raptor flight from the Sagan to the Adama.

Justin Bond came out of the bedroom and saw his wife had made him some fresh coffee. He smiled at her and kissed her on the forehead. "You know me too well, Mrs. Bond."

"You're just easy to read, Governor", she said with a wink, and he arched his eyebrows at her.

"I need to catch up on the latest with Lee in CIC, so after this, I'm headed out."

The first lady countered him on that, "Actually you aren't going up there right away", she said with a smile, and he gave her a quizzical look. "Kara and Abby will be over here in a few minutes, dear."

"What's up, Judy?"

She told him how Lee had found out some information the day before, and that it was something they needed to discuss, as a family.

"It can't be about Nick or his team?", the Governor thought aloud, "He'd just come out and tell us."

"It's not about Nick, per se, but it's very important that we discuss this as a family."

"OK, babe", he said with a resigned air, "You're The Boss."

Within fifteen minutes their daughters and their Granddaughter were gathered in their VIP quarters. Judith then took the floor.

"I asked you all here because while you were on the surface, Justin, and while you were flying your mission, Kara, we found out some information that we have to discuss."

Neither one still had the first inkling about what was going on.

"Now, this may seem odd at first, but I need to bring two other people to this conversation."

Now the Governor and Admiral were really perplexed.

Abby got up and went to the door that led to the outer office. In walked Ensign Natalia Schrevrenko. Judith was by her side.

"Governor, Admiral, I'd like you to meet Ensign Natalia Schrevrenko, Engine Specialist, First Class."

The Governor got up and went over to the young lady and smiled, "It's nice to meet you, Ensign." Kara got up and introduced herself as well.

"Natalia is here for a reason, Justin, but I'd like her to explain it." She nodded at the Ensign.

"Yes, well, Governor, Admiral", she began in her accented Russian, but with some hesitation, "I know how this situation has hit your family very hard, and it's affected everyone in the fleet as well."

She paused and looked over at Judith, who smiled and nodded.

"I've been feeling the same, but it's been different for me." she said, with her eyes cast down again, still feeling some lingering shame that she and Nick had hidden their relationship from this family.

"Why has it been different for you?", Kara said without rancor, seriously wanting to know what was happening here.

"It's because that, even though we hadn't told you, Nicholas and I have been dating for the last ten months, and we've become very close", she said, with the emotion building up in here again.

Justin Bond was speechless at that moment, as this was the last thing he had expected. Kara, however, had a different reaction.

Remembering how her adopted parents had come to her side when she was facing a crisis during the war, the emotions of that day came flooding back. She stood up, went over to Natalia, grabbing her hands, and standing the young woman up as well.

Kara looked into her eyes, seeing an image of herself on that fateful day more than twenty years ago. Then without warning, she smiled warmly and embraced her, as tears started to come down her face.

"Ensign", she said quietly, "Good God, to know you've been suffering alone like this.", Natalia was momentarily confused, but the sincerity of the Admiral's actions hit her at once, and she surrendered to the hug, with tears coming out of her eyes as well. Kara embraced her as if she had found a long-lost sister.

Justin Bond was coming around, having felt like a lightning bolt had hit him. He slowly stood up and looked dazed at his wife, who laughed a bit. He slowly made his way over to Kara and the Ensign.

"Natalia", he said, and like with Judith Bond, she asked him to call her Natalie, "Natalie, I'm so sorry you were carrying this burden alone, my dear. No one should suffer such heartache by themselves."

"Thank you, Governor", she said after breaking the embrace with Kara, whose face was lit up with a wonderful smile, realizing what this moment meant.

"Natalie, come sit down here next to me", Justin Bond asked her, and she complied, "Do you know how Kara became our daughter?"

"I know some of it, of course. Nick goes on about you all the time, Admiral", she smiled at Kara. "But I don't think I know the, shall we say, intimate details."

Kara then explained about what she had gone through during the war; how she had terribly hurt President Bond, and how he and Judith Bond had come to her aid, "They literally saved me, Natalie, in every way possible. For years, I had bottled up so many things and suffered alone. They taught me that I didn't need to do that anymore." Kara looked straight at her, "You've only been dealing with this for a few days by yourself, and that's a few days too long. You don't have to suffer by yourself."

Abby then told them how Natalia had no family left, that it was only her.

Justin Bond shook his head at hearing that, "Natalia, that isn't true any longer. I imagine Judith has already said this to you, but I will as well: you have a Family now. We may not have adopted you, but that doesn't matter. You obviously love Nick very much, and that makes you special to us. You are now, and always will be part of this family."

"But, what if Nick is...", she dare not say the word.

He grabbed her one hand, "It doesn't matter how this plays out, you're a Bond now, whether any certificate says so or not. We accept you as one of our own."

The validation from Governor Bond had made her smile broadly. Unlike when Judith or Kara had rushed to her, this time, she turned towards the Governor, smiled, and slowly embraced him. "Spasibo", she said in her native language.

Abby got up and walked Katraine towards Natalia, "Katraine, I'd like you to meet your new aunt, Natalia."

Natalia looked over at the young girl, went up to her. Katraine looked at her, and like a child would, she simply said, "It's nice to meet you, Aunt Natalie." Natalie embraced the girl with a warm hug.

She had a family again.


General Seth Trevor had his scout teams about a mile inside the city limits. They had only seen a few people, but those had run away before there was any real contact. They had been in the city for two days now, and their nerves were a little thin-not for what had happened, but because nothing had happened. They thought there would be more of a welcoming party in this town.

Raptors and Falcons flew overhead every so often, simply to keep the ground troops notified of anything that might sneak up on them. Nothing had so far.

It was late in the Afternoon on Canceron, when the General received a call on the radio unit within his helmet, "Ground Ops, Raptor 656, General, I have a fairly large group of people moving your direction, about two thousand yards out. I have your location fixed, and they're to your One o'clock. Hi-res glasses show no weapons apparent at this time."

"Six-Five-Six, how big is 'fairly large'"? He said with mild amusement.

"Rough guess, sir, is about perhaps two hundred."

"Raptor 656, I copy that, stay overhead and monitor." The General then turned into the inter-unit frequency and informed his forces, "All units, large force, estimated at two hundred just to my One o'clock", he then gave orders to different units to close near his position as he moved Southwest towards where this crowd was coming from.

In about ten minutes, the two groups were coming down what had to be one of the main thoroughfares in Hades. It was a good thousand feet wide, looking akin to the approaches to the Champs-Élysées in Paris. The group was moving towards his troops, and they didn't seem to be in a hurry. The General had set up defense-in-depth behind their positions and to their flanks so that they wouldn't be surprised by any unexpected movement.

At about five hundred yards, a man near the center of the crowd in the front pulled out a white flag or handkerchief from his pocket and raised it over his head.

Cory Mathers had her hi-res eyes out, "General, I guess that flag is the same just about everywhere, isn't it?"

"It is, Captain", he got on the radio and told his troops to stay sharp, despite the parlay flag. The General carried a white cloth for just such occasions, and pulled it out, to indicate that, yes, we see your flags, and that I'm the guy you want to meet with.

Then the man with the flag turned around, and apparently spoke to the others, and they all stopped. He and a woman that was with him continued forward. Seeing that, the General had Captain Mathers accompany him after telling everyone else to stand-to for the moment.

In about three minutes, they were within twenty yards of each other, and the two natives stopped, as did Trevor and Mathers.

They looked at each other for a few moments. The man seemed to be about six foot three, and built like an Ox; the woman was about three inches taller than Cory but had a very rough-hewn look on her face.

After the staredown lasted for a few moment, Trevor spoke in Caprican, which had been the Universal language of The Colonies, "Hands out to the side if you please, are you armed?"

The man smiled and said, "Well, you obviously are, so why shouldn't I be?" Trevor actually laughed slightly.

"Yes, we are. But we are soldiers from the Colonial Government. My name is General Seth Trevor. This is Captain Cory Mathers."

"It's nice to meet you General", the man said evenly, "Actually, we are not armed at the moment, may we approach your location?"

Trevor nodded, "Slow and easy if you please?" And the twosome approached to meet face-to-face. Upon the closer look, the man seemed to be in his 50's, and the woman not much younger than he was.

"General Trevor, I am Blade Scoggins; this hear is my wife, Sierra." The woman still looked less than thrilled to be there.

"I'm glad to meet you, Blade, Sierra", he was keeping an eye on them, and he knew how to get to his weapon quickly, so he felt perfectly safe. Cory wished she had the ice water in her veins like he had.

"General, what can we do for you today?", the man asked, "If I recall, we haven't seen any Colonial troops since the nukes fell when I was a young man. Why are you showing up now?"

"That will take a lot of explaining, Mr. Scroggins, but I'm willing to share that information with you bit by bit. But I'll have a few questions of my own first, if I may?"

"Be my guest, General", Blade said in relaxed tones, "What can I answer for you?"

"Can you tell me, as close as you can, what the current population of Hades is. Just your estimate will do, sir."

Scroggins thought for a moment, "This is a big city, sir, as you know, but right now, I'd say there are, oh, maybe two million souls throughout, give or take a few either side."

"Thank you kindly, Mr. Scroggins", and he smiled at the man, "Secondly, are their armed citizens here as well?"

"Yes, there are, sir", he affirmed, "how many I could not tell you."

"Is there a government entity of any sort here presently?"

"A formal government? No", he smiled again, "But I lead the largest faction in Hades. Right now, things are pretty peaceful. Why do you ask?

"Because it will be our intention to restore Hades under Colonial Administration", he paused for a moment, "That won't happen right away, but that is the intention of my Government."

Finally, Sierra spoke up, "And what government is that, General?" She said with wariness in her eyes.

"The Government of The Twelve Colonies of Kobol, ma'am." There was a finality to that statement that he had intended. He knew there was no current government, but he did represent the entity that was looking to establish a new Colonial Government.

"Some people may not like that, General", the man said without rancor, "I mean you no harm, but just stating a fact."

"I appreciate your candor, sir", Trevor said calmly. Sundown was looking at both of them, These two guys would be great poker players, Lordy!

"Do you have proof of your bonafide's, General?"

"I do, in fact sir", and handed over to Blade hi-res binoculars, "I want you to look into the Wester sky, just a few degrees above the Horizon. With these glasses, you will see the largest Battlestar ever constructed, and three other main ships of The Fleet that are here. All told, at this time, there are about eighteen vessels of different size orbiting."

Scoggins gave him a sidewards glance, then took the specs, and looked in that direction. He could clearly see the Laura Roslin and the three DSE's parked near her. "That's a big fleet, Admiral, and I remember those Battlestars. That one does look bigger than I remember them."

"Just for your information, what is above Canceron is one-quarter of our fleet. We have two Battlestars of that size in the Colonial System currently, another three of those larger vessels that you have seen: fifty-six ships in all, carrying approximately two-thousand of what used to be called Vipers, but now are called Falcons, and around nine-hundred Raptors. The fleet also contains six Missile ships, with more nuclear weapons than the Colonies possessed before the war."

He wanted to overawe the man a little, and it seemed to have worked. Blade actually coughed a little in hearing those numbers, which made Sierra roll her eyes.

"If that is true, General, I reckon you can take this here rock."

"Our intention isn't to take it, as it were, but to rebuild Colonial Civilization on the Twelve Colonies. As I said, it will take some time to explain all of this to you and your colleagues and rivals here, but we have the time."

With that, Mr. Scroggins invited the General and Captain inside a building near them, so they could sit and talk some more.

Nick Bond had been on the ground for six days now. He was still eating some rations, and some bugs; he still had a little water left that he brought with him; he had even killed a squirrel-like creature and had eaten it one afternoon.

He wasn't in great shape, and he knew it. The injuries to his buttock and his right arm were draining a lot of his strength, and he was worried about infection setting in from the shrapnel that had once been in the would behind him. He had heard some distant human noises, but what he could ascertain, they had not been friendlies.

With such little night time, he could only move a few hours a day, and his wound below his torso was slowing him down more and more. He constantly kept his assault rifle in front of him, and two of the sidearms he had close by as well. He had also put a silencer on all three, which would help mute any noise should he get into a scrap.

Nick had seen Raptors off in the distance, but he knew he couldn't send a flare up, as it could bring the bad guys faster than the good guys, so he kept going.

It was late in the evening-the sun would go down in about ninety minutes. He was holed up in another small cave, as they pocketed the mountainside, and offered protection. He had just taken a swig of water when he heard voices in the distance. He came alert at once.

Since the sun was almost gone, he felt a little safer sticking his head out to see if he could figure out what was happening. He prayed it was his colleagues.

A loud voice startled him. It wasn't really close, but close enough to alert him that somebody was in the close vicinity. He bent on one knee, making himself a smaller target, and pulled out his hi-res eyes, and flipped on the night-vision setting. He waited for a human voice again to let him locate the sounds.

"Brig!" a voice cried, what seemed to be directly North of Captain Bond, "Get over here, you idiot! I think I might have found some track here!" Nicholas hadn't been in that area. He guessed that, perhaps, it had been UED forces.

"Maybe it's the pilot from that damned bird we shot down!", Brig said to the other man, "We still can't find that frackin' thing, but we know it crashed, that's for sure."

The two men kept talking back and forth, the other one apparently with the name of "Strap", which was probably a nickname. And the sound kept heading towards him, not away from him. Nick Bond still couldn't see them, so he moved into some tall thicket West of the cave, and just inside the current treeline he was at, and brought the goggles to his face. The men got louder.

There! Nick said to himself. He could see them moving, they were just a little Northeast of his position, and probably about seven hundred yards away, on the other side of the opening between two tree lines. Looking at them, they seemed to have what looked like shotguns, but no binoculars were apparent. They were seemingly out her almost blind in the dusk.

But they kept coming.

They were now on his side of the opening now, among the trees but were so far still heading South and a little East of his position. He had been rotating on his belly, slowly rotating towards them, keeping them in his line-of-sight. Without warning, a bird took off and screeched just to his right, making a fearful racket. Nick stiffened, and the two men looked his way.

Don't even twitch a muscle, Captain, Nick said to himself. The were still heading Southeast of his location.

"Strap, it was just a frackin' bird, for god's sake", Brig laughed at his companion, "you get scared too fast."

"Maybe it was, Brig" the other man retorted, "but if catch him dead or alive, we get that nice big, reward that The Crown said he'd pay us!". Nick stored that piece of information in the back of his mind. And then they turned West, directly towards him.

Within five minutes, they were about seven-hundred feet, directly East of Axman's location. Nick knew they would eventually cross back, and hoped they would cross back to the North before reaching him. He was also checking the other directions around him just to make sure this wasn't a set-up. He saw no other movement.

Then Brig spoke up, "Aw, crap, Strap, we ain't going to find anything out here, it's getting too damn dark."

He heard Strap audibly sigh, "Yeah, you're right my friend, no reward tonight", the continued heading South...and were coming directly at him.

Nick slowly picked up his rifle. He could see the two against the fading light of the evening. He knew what he needed to do.

His weapon made six quick thumps as the bullets exited the silencer. The two men never knew what hit them. He had hit them both, center-mass, in the middle of their chests. They were dead before they hit the ground.

Nick stayed still for a few moments, checked every direction, then crawled to where the two men were. He grabbed their shotguns and buried them under some leaves about five-hundred feet away. They also had some sidearms and took those. Then he took more leaves and covered the bodies of the two men as much as he could, then he again headed West.

Captain Thomas Dalbott and his Special Ops team had been making slow but steady progress Eastward through the Caprican Mountains. After seeing the lone wolf who they had captured and turned over for questioning, they hadn't seen another soul. He admitted that whoever was up here, most weren't stupid. They too were trying to keep a low profile. He was sure they saw the firepower overhead and had mostly pulled in their reins. They had gone about fifteen miles into the range in seven days.

They hadn't seen the bad guys, but they hadn't seen any of the three good guys, either.

It was late morning, and he had is team spread out horizontally from North to South. He had changed from the East-West deployment the day before, thinking that if the Raptor were up here, they had to be getting close to it, and wanted a more spread formation. They had gone about three-fourths of a mile that day when one of his Company's members got on the radio.

"Boss, Kwan, possible debris sighting to my immediate front, looks like about a thousand yards. I'm getting a glint of sunlight off of something." Kwan was to his left, perhaps a quarter-mile inside the tree line.

"Southern scouts hold your line, everyone else moves in towards Kwan, everyone keeps pushing forward." The detail continued Eastward, with the bulk of his troops converging on where Sergeant Kwan was.

He got to his subordinate within five minutes, "Kwan, SitRep?"

"Sir", he said peering in front of him, "I think we're within about five-hundred yards of where I saw the glint of light. Clouds are over now, so it's been obscured."

"And there's a lot of thickets ahead", he thought aloud, "OK, we continue forward."

They went about another two hundred yards and then the sun came out. There was a bright reflection of light that marked the area. But it was unmistakable what they could see.

"Company, Dalbott", he said with a mixture of excitement and sadness, "we have the Raptor in sight. Continue to proceed with caution."

Within two minutes they were at the sight, and Dalbott had his forces form a ring around the bird while he moved in for inspection.

As Nick Bond had done seven days earlier, he raised the hatch. The site he saw was even more gruesome than what Nick saw, as the bodies had started to decompose. He had to pause to keep from retching, but the urge passed.

"Company, two dead inside", he said morosely, They had all been given photographs of the three crew members of the ship, and even with decomposition in progress, he could identify bout, although, in the case of Rick Londhal, he went more on hair color than facial features, which had been all but obliterate in the crash. But he was satisfied with his ID, "Confirm Lieutenant Londhal and Lieutenant Marisio KIA", he was talking as he moved to them, "No Dog Tags on either."

He came out of the Raptor, and the troops with him all looked sullen and dejected, Patrick Kwan came up to him, "Thinking Axman took their tags, sir?"

"Someone did, and the logical choice would be Nick", he said, still grim-faced. "Could mean our boy is alive."

"The question is, is he on the lam, or was he abducted?". Kwan was equally as grim.

"If he had time to check the ship out and grab the tags, I'd bet he's on the loose, and we have to go on that supposition, Sergeant."

Dalbott had everyone relax a little but keeping their eyes peeled. He turned away and called General Grayson about their discovery.
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