Era of Rebellion - Navigation

Alice Bee and Christopher Levy.
One year after the Battle of Yavin (36:8:8) in the Essesia system: Esseles (New Calamar: Claudius Rodney's estate).
Doctor Alessandra Bailo, Ewwiekewwieikkie, Grand Moff Claudius Rodney, and Major Sierra Rodney.

Claudius Rodney was sound asleep in his Corellian king bed, beside his lovely wife, as content and comfortable as one could be. If it were up to him he would have slept several more hours, but the sound of a loud *splash* outside the window caused him to begin to stir. His eyes opened slowly, and he stretched out his arms and legs, as he began the waking process. "Oh it's too early," he whined, as he began blinking to focus his vision. He was fine with the pool, but its position to close to their bedroom window was ill-advised. When he saw the chronometer he wanted to cry. He was up earlier than a cadet. Sleeping in was one of the privileges of rank. He let out a sigh, allowed his head to crash back against the pillow and an instant later he was back asleep and snoring filled the room. But then *splash* again and his eyes opened once more. There would be no rest for him.

Sierra Rodney was peacefully sleeping beside her husband. The pool had its advantages in that Ewwiekewwieikkie and Melickielickie had fallen asleep early last night...too early, as fate would have it. She was sleeping on her side while experiencing a dream where Ewwiekewwieikkie came barreling down the slide repeatedly, splashing her every single time. "S-Stop it..." She mumbled, rolling to bury her face in her pillow. The second splash woke her. She blinked. The sun wasn't even up yet. Reluctantly, she lifted her head to peer over her love at the chronometer. She let up a groan that summed up both of their feelings. Another *splash* came from the yard. Sierra buried herself up against Claudius' back. If she was up, then surely he was too. "It's too early for pool time... Or living." She closed her eyes. There was the big meeting to be held in Claudius' office today. It had kept her from falling asleep easily the prior night, which was not proving to be an advantage now.

"I was so happy when they went to bed," Claudius said, but most of his words were muffled by the pillow his face was planted against. "...but the earlier they go to bed, the earlier they wake up," he complained, when suddenly he heard another *splash*. "We need to sound dampen these windows," he said to his wife, before slowly rolling over to face her with a groan. "With the meeting I would have hoped to have gotten more sleep," he said, as he looked across at his wife. "Somehow this is your new aide's fault," he told her, as he leaned over to place a good morning kiss upon her lips. "How did you sleep? While you were allowed to sleep that it is," he asked her, but with commentary.

"I was too..." She recalled joyously spending the evening with her husband and falling asleep *after* the Squibs. "We might as well soundproof the whole room. I bet we'd sleep better if we did... It also gives us a place to escape Drusilla's jizz." She smiled as he rolled to face her. Sierra nudged her body right up against his and rested her leg on top of his hip to make herself, and her growing belly, more comfortable. "*Everything* is his fault... Maybe we can sneak aboard the Retributor and catch a nap in our living quarters there before the meeting." She suggested. She knew full well that the meeting would be no fun. Sierra expected a screaming match and Major Eona chain smoking her out. She kissed him. "Mm... Good morning, love. I slept okay...obviously not enough. If I don't fall asleep standing up during my meeting with Lieutenant Meham'ohorovi'cloca I'll be surprised. How did you sleep?" She leaned forward to steal another kiss. The splashing persisted, but there was no immediate need to jump out of bed.

"Yes. Another task for your aide," Claudius teased, as he outstretched his arms above him and had himself a good stretch. "If you'd like, wear a pair of my gladeshades. Claim you have a migraine. Then she won't know that you're asleep. She'll think you're just listening really hard," he suggested to his wife as he began the slow process of sitting up. "I slept good for a little while at least," he said, as he looked over at the quiet bassinet. "At least it didn't wake Bruce up, you wanna go check on him?" he asked, lazily, as he returned her kiss.

"...It sounds like you're speaking from experience. The glareshades is a good idea. I'll take a pair with me." She, too, looked towards the bassinet where Bruce was supposedly sleeping. "...Yeah. I can't believe all the noise hasn't woken him up yet." Sierra slowly rolled out of bed. As she approached the bassinet, she quickly became aware that something was wrong. There was an unnatural silence. She couldn't even hear the little boy breathing while he slept. When she looked in the bassinet, Sierra found *nothing*. "He isn't here!" Her blood pressure spiked as initial panic settled in. Drusilla had never taken Bruce out of their bedroom during the night. Frankly, entering their bedroom once everyone had been tucked in was risky business as they were married and did certain. . . martial things. Sierra's shaking hands lifted their son's blanket. She noticed blue fur on the bassinet mattress, but it didn't seem to soothe her at all. "Ewwiekewwieikkie!" She shrieked. Ewwiekewwiekkie didn't know that Bruce couldn't swim. Her intentions may be pure...but he simply wasn't old enough to be alone with his sister in the pool.

Sierra charged out of their room quickly. Instead of gracefully making her way down the stairs, her bare foot collided with a jewel on the very first step which caused her to fall down the remainder of the stairs on her rear end. The noise that Claudius had to be hearing sounded like the two Squibs stampeding up the stairs, but in reality was his wife having a Rodney clumsy moment. Claudius had joked that she would be attending to him sooner than later, but in reality, it seemed the other way around. "Damn it..." She grumbled as she used the railing on the stairs to stand again. "I need an adult," she whined.

Claudius immediately woke up when Sierra said that Bruce was gone. All of the worst things that entered a father's mind entered his in that moment. But when Sierra called for Ewwiekewwieikkie he became more annoyed than concerned, as he had noticed some negative changes in his adopted daughter lately. She had been acting up, but he had hoped it would just be a phase. This, however, was a step too far. He heard Sierra crash, which caused him to rush from the bed and out into the corridor where he found his wife trying to stand at the base of the stairs. "What happened? Are you alright?" he asked her, as he moved down the stairs to join her. When a normal person fell it was of concern, but whenever a pregnant woman took a tumble it was a cause for urgency. "Should I call a doctor?" he asked her, as both of his arms wrapped around her protectively.

"I stepped on something painful and fell.." She looked up the stairs and sure enough, shining bright like a diamond, was a jewel. "Oh for Germanicus' sake!" Sierra exclaimed. She had momentarily been derailed from saving Bruce. "I-I'm okay." She lied, rubbing at her backside and further along her spine. "Don't worry about me first...worry about Bruce first!" She was hurting from her tumble time down the stairs. She hooked and arm with his and led the way, slowly, towards the yard. "Today isn't starting out on the right foot, my love." She looked across the yard. "Ewwiekewwieikkie!"

Ewwiekewwieikkie was the happiest she had ever been. She had her pool with her waterslide, and her new brother was an animal magnet. All she had to do was hold him and every animal from miles around would come to her to play with. She wished she had been able to take him to the zoo, because then the animals might have followed them home. For now she was content that the ducks did not run away when she tried to get near them, and avians had come down from the mountains for her to examine and pet. Between this she would go for a ride on her waterslide, and when Sierra emerged from the estate she was a soaking wet mess, standing over Bruce who was on the grass, surrounded by ducks. "Good morning!" she said, as she ran towards Sierra, to give her a big hug that left her wet and covered in strands of blue fur.

"I'm sorry," Claudius said to her, as he looked towards the jewel at the top of the stairs. As he followed her outside he was glad to see that Bruce was well, but surrounded by ducks and other avians he could not readily identify. It would have been a birdwatcher's paradise. The Stormtroopers seemed baffled, and he did not want to have to answer any of their questions, sho while Sierra spoke to Ewwiekewwieikkie he moved to pick up his son. As he did, all of the ducks began flapping their wings and quacking at him. They did not want Bruce taken away, nor did it seem that Bruce was any particularly hurry to leave.

To Sierra's greatest relief, Bruce was safe. There were a massive amount of bird species around him, but none of them seemed to have harmed him. She preferred Bruce summoning birds and not the sea monster from Delaya. She saw Ewwiekewwieikkie, totally soaked and grinning from ear to ear. "Good morning, Ewwiekewwieikkie." She said as she received a hug that soaked through her pajamas. She hugged her adoptive daughter back before diving into serious mother mode. "Honey, you can't take Bruce from me and your father's bedroom without asking first. When we saw he was gone, it scared us." She explained. She, too, had noticed Ewwiekewwieikkie acting out. She didn't know if the Squib needed more attention or what. She took her by the hand and led her over to a bench. "Sweetie, is there something wrong?" She asked as worry settled into her features.

Ewwiekewwieikkie did not understand, because she often saw Drusilla with Bruce, and she was ten years older than her. She began to get anxious when her adopted father picked up Bruce and the ducks began to get upset. As Sierra led her towards the bench, her yellow eyes were looking towards all the avians hoping they would not go. "But Dru takes him all the time," she said, as she tilted her head towards Sierra. "I took Melickielickie and Callista to the zoo," she said proudly, continuing to smile and laugh, unaware that anything had gone wrong. "I not allowed to go to Delaya. I not allowed to do anything I guess," she said, before she, too, developed the Rodney family pout. Even though she was not adopted the pout nevertheless had found its way into her repertoire. "Did you know Bruce is an animal magnet? I know Bruce is an animal magnet. Since I no go to zoo. Zoo comes to Bruce. I need Bruce," she explained, in a way that made total sense to her.

Sierra listened to Ewwiekewwieikkie. She suddenly felt bad that they hadn't included Ewwiekewwieikkie in the Delaya trip. Internally, Sierra crumbled at seeing Ewwiekewwieikkie had adopted the family's signature pout. Sierra reached out, holding onto one of her paws. "Yes, Drusilla does watch Bruce often...but she *always* asks first. You can help out with your brother too. You just need to ask your father or I before you take him." Despite how badly the zoo visit had gone, Sierra saw how proud Ewwiekewwieikkie was of her independent trip. "You did take Melickielickie and Callista to the zoo. You showed me that you can take on some responsibilities. Do you want to help out more? Maybe you can study with Doctor Tohan and become a nurse." Even though Ewwiekewwieikkie was child-like, it was important that she receive some independence of her own. She did a good job looking out after her sister after all.

"I'm sorry we didn't take you with us to Delaya..." She reached out, wrapping an arm around her wet form. "How about, you, and Bruce can go on a special trip to Delaya. We'll all go to the zoo together there." Oh, she knew all about Bruce being an animal magnet. The boy had summoned a thranta to injure Papius Arundel. He had made a connection with a gigantic octopus.

"Hmm," Ewwiekewwieikkie murmured, as she brought her paw up to her face to consider what Sierra was saying. "Okay! Then, can I borrow Bruce to make the birds come play with me?" she asked, as her mouth hung open, causing her tongue to slide out with excitement. "Yes. I help more," she said, excitedly, as she did a little dance while standing on the bench that only caused more water and fur to go flying. She was getting *very* excited. "I talk to Doctor. He said I no get spoons for helping. He said I get credits to buy my own spoons. Sounds fishy," she said, as she considered the bargain, tapping her foot impatiently. "The Delaya zoo? Yay!" she screamed, before wrapping her arms around Sierra and giving her a good, wet squeeze.

She smiled and nodded her head, "Yes, you can borrow Bruce to make the birds come. Just remember, always *ask* first." She stressed the point to her repeatedly. She would need to think about what jobs Ewwiekewwieikkie could take on. Washing her bantha was most certainly on that list. She had seen Zara towards the end of her pregnancy with the twins. There was no way she'd be able to bathe the bantha at that point. Seeing Ewwiekewwieikkie dance, and shower her with blue fur, put Sierra in a better mood despite her aching back. "If you work and get credits, I'll take you somewhere special to use your credits. You can buy things besides spoons, Ewwiekewwieikkie. There are so many more shiny things out there." Sierra explained, quite possibly the stupidest thing she had ever said. As the girl accepted Sierra's bargain, she, too, wrapped her arms around Ewwiekewwieikkie and gave her a squeeze. "Alright, sweetheart. Why don't you go play with Bruce? I need to go shower." Sierra rose from the bench and began making her way towards Claudius. Ugh, maybe she would take him up on seeing Doctor Tohan.

Claudius had been watching a safe distance, hoping Sierra would find the right words to use to motivate Ewwiekewwieikkie. Based on the dancing and hugs it seemed that she had. When she came running back to him to take Bruce he seemed confused, but Sierra indicated it was okay, so he handed him over to her. Suddenly Ewwiekewwieikkie was enveloped in avians, but rather than get scared she was giggling happily. Finally, Sierra returned to him, and he moved back inside, though he kept an eye on his children at all times. "Are you okay? Maybe we should postpone the meeting," he suggested, as he looked down towards the ground. He did not have confidence in his staff, and expected nothing but bickering and infighting.

She watched Ewwiekewwieikkie, Bruce, and their many avian companions. Bruce looked happy too. Since all was well, Sierra decided it was okay to leave the two together. She made her way back inside the house. Now that she had been embraced by a soaked Squib several times, she was in need of her morning shower. She took her husband's hand and gave it a squeeze. "I'm okay. I just hurt my back a little. Don't postpone the meeting. I had a hard enough time falling asleep last night stressing out over it. We both know rescheduling would only postpone the inevitable unpleasantness." She sat on a barstool at the kitchen counter. She looked at her husband with bright blue eyes. "Whatcha makin' me for breakfast?"

"Hurt your back?" Claudius repeated, and then frowned, as he was tempted to call a doctor against her will. "I'm sure Doctor Bailo can see to you before the meeting," he said, as he returned his wife's hand squeeze. "Let's see," he said, as he turned and opened the counter to find a box of cereal. He took it, a bowl, a spoon, and a bottle of blue milk and set to work. Moments later he offered her the combination of the elements. "Auntie Mae-o's. With marshmallow Brad the Bantha and Doug the Dewback. Our daughters swear by it," he said, sincerely, as he slid the bowl over to her with an affectionate smile. If he tried to cook something he would have to remember his firefighting training course during the Clone Wars.

Sierra never liked making a big deal over herself. If she woke up the next day and couldn't get out of bed, she'd *still* try to pretend like she was a-okay. She grumbled at the mention of Doctor Bailo, but ultimately agreed to meet with her under her breath. She placed her chin in her hands while she watched him prepare her a bowl of cereal. Sierra laughed happily. "I'm surprised they haven't picked out all the marshmallows yet. Thank you, love. I appreciate you slaving over blue milk for me." She winked. She picked up her spoon and settled into breakfast. After all, Sierra was eating for *three* now. After her first bite, she smiled brightly. "Oh Claudius, your cooking is so good." She teased him.

"I know," Claudius replied with a confident smile, as he raised his right hand across to his left shoulder to brush some imaginary dust away. He moved away from Sierra momentarily to get to the control panel where he transmitted a distress call to Doctor Bailo, wherever she was these days. With that taken care of, he moved back towards the large transparisteel sliding door to look out at Ewwiekewwieikkie and Bruce 'playing' with the avians. "I sometimes forget how old she is. She's older than you," he said, as he looked towards the ground, wondering what was to become of Ewwiekewwieikkie. When he adopted her he did not think long-term, and while it was a good solution at the time he needed to ensure she had a life beyond playing at his estate. The same issue would come for Melickielickie one day.

As Sierra ate her cereal, she noticed that there were only marshmallows of Brad the Bantha. It seemed one, or both, of the Squibs had picked out all the Doug the Dewbacks. "I know. I forget too. She's so childlike in so many ways. I've been thinking about her *future*." Sierra said. She took another bite of cereal, but this one caused her to cough *hard*. "Ugh!" She reached into her mouth, pulling out far too much blue fur. Suddenly, her appetite had left the estate. She pushed her cereal to the side and rose. "I realized that I've been reluctant to give her new responsibilities because she seems so young. She wants to do more, and so, we need to trust her with more. She has expressed an interest in becoming a nurse. I think we should support her. With Doctor Tohan's help, I think it's possible that she could make a good nurse. She was very sweet when she took care of me." She stood beside her husband to watch Ewwiekewwieikkie and Bruce play.

"Well the first thing that needs to happen is an explanation that a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down, and that a spoonful of sugar is *not* *the* medicine," Claudius said, as he rolled his eyes at his daughter's comedic confusion at times. "Alright. I will not stand in the way. Doctor Bailo should be here soon so that she can fix your back before the sector command staff attempt to walk all over it," he said, with some truthfulness, as he leaned over and placed a loving kiss upon her. As he watched Ewwiekewwieikkie with Bruce he was glad she had not taken him to the zoo, for he surely would have lured the fierce rancor monster as well. Perhaps the one creature worse than the sea monster on Delaya.

Sierra laughed and shook her head. "I'm surprised I didn't go into a diabetic shock that day." Ewwiekewwieikkie was a menace with a bag of sugar. His comment made her groan. "We could stay home and hide from the meeting. I'll make us our very own pillow fort and no one will find us." Sierra was growing tired of the way people treated her and looked at her on her husband's command ship. Most people assumed they knew something about a situation they couldn't begin to understand. As she kissed Claudius, she felt grateful that it was a battle they fought together. "You think it'll be that bad? I wonder how much longer it'll take for people to respect me, or if it'll ever happen at all." She pulled him towards the living room to sit and wait for Doctor Bailo. Thankfully, it wasn't much longer before the old Ithorian female came walking into the estate from the back door. Sierra assumed Ewwiekewwieikkie had showed her where to come in from.

Alessandra Bailo had learned to take the calls from the House of Rodney with utmost importance. She and Pilaq had been spending time aboard the Retributor checking on various patients. She was close when the call came in. It didn't take her long to reach Claudius' estate. To her surprise, it had gain a pool ... and a water slide? She decided not to ask. Instead, the Ithorian female directed her attention on the expectant mother. "Milord, milady." She said, nodding her large hammerhead. "What is the problem?" She asked the question as she made her way towards them.

"Yes. Do that. I'll order Ensign Sheppard to bring more pillows," Claudius said, as he much preferred hiding to actually going to the meeting. "It's a turf war. Each one of these commanders thinks they are the best suited to solve the Rebel problem. They do not want to listen. They are worse than our children at times," he said, with a sigh, but before he could continue Doctor Bailo had arrived. "Doctor Bailo, thank you for coming so quickly," he said, as he extended his arm and motioned for her to check on his wife. "We were early to rise this morning and unfortunately my wife well down the stairs while attempting to check on our son," he explained, truthfully, as he stepped out of her way so that the Doctor could examine his wife.

"Oooh. Do that. I want to make a big fort." She didn't want to think about the meeting. Vice Admiral Raven seemed to think that peace between the branches was possible, but Sierra wasn't sure. It was necessary to *try* to improve the situation. Everyone was suffering by playing games. Before she could invest herself too much in work talk, Doctor Bailo arrived. "Yes. It seems someone left a jewel on the stairs." She smiled at the doctor. She hoped Doctor Bailo didn't read too much into the situation.

The doctor frowned. "You must be more careful, milady. You have two lives to worry about in addition to your own." She opened up her doctor bag and began to examine Sierra carefully. "You both are fortunate to have called me. Doctor Tohan would have given you both a bonk on the head for this. Stand up, child." She poked and prodded at the Rodney woman. Her check up was a little more extensive, as she didn't want to send Sierra on her way without being sure that she was okay. "It appears you've only bruised yourself a little bit." She said. "You may want to ice your back otherwise you'll feel your fall tomorrow morning. Please milady, take it easy." She drew herself away from Sierra. "Do *you* feel okay?" She looked from Claudius to his wife.

Sierra would be taking the stairs slowly from now on. The disappearance of Bruce had given her a small heart attack. She was glad to hear that everything was well, but the words ‘take it easy' never seemed to stick with her. After she had given birth to Bruce, she'd been up and doing things less than 24 hours later. Sierra Rodney didn't know what it meant to take it *easy*. She nodded her head. "I'll do that, Doctor. Beside the pain in my back, I'm fine." She tried to reassure everyone.

"Potty! Gotta go potty!" Ewwiekewwieikkie announced as she came running back into the estate, carrying Bruce, and in a frantic hurry. "Here you go!" she said, sweetly, as she handed Bruce back over to Sierra. She started to do a hurried run when she saw Doctor Bailo. "Oh, hi!" she said, stopping for a hug, before she began climbing up the stairs to find a bathroom. "Oof," she said, as she tripped, and stumbled about halfway up, banging her knee. She was down for only an instant before she hurried back up towards the bathroom. Unfortunately, she did not close the door to the estate and a parade of various aquatic avians was making its way into the ground floor of the estate.

"Oh for the love of Germanicus!" Claudius cried out, as suddenly protecting the estate from the avians took precedence over Sierra's check up. "Shoo! Shoo!" he said, as he tried to get them out of the estate. They were flapping their wings and squawking like crazy, but with some effort he managed to get most of them out, and the door closed. When done he collapsed to the ground in front of the door, with his back up against it to keep the creatures out. "That's it. No one can ever open this door again," he informed everyone, as it suddenly turned into the plot from an old holodrama thriller.

"Thank you for coming so quickly and making us all feel better about my little tumble." Sierra gave Doctor Bailo's shoulder a squeeze. At that point, Ewwiekewwieikkie and a parade of avian friends came bursting into the estate. Sierra took Bruce and cuddled him close. She watched Ewwiekewwieikkie fall down the stairs. Before she could even rise to her feet, the Squib had recovered and disappeared upstairs. Bruce started laughing *hard* while his father worked to chase out all of the birds. Sierra rose from the couch and made her way over to the door to lock it, thus keeping out all the creatures. "You hear that, Doctor Bailo? You live with us now." She could hear the old Ithorian snort. "I guess that settles it. We *can't* go to the meeting. Boohoo." Sierra took her husband's hand and started making her way back upstairs. She avoided the jewel this time, and successfully went up the stairs without getting hurt. "Good job herding the birds."

"Maybe we can put your aide in charge. That way when defeat comes he can be the one to answer to Lord Vader," Claudius suggested to his wife after she commented that they could miss the meeting. As they ascended the stairs he remained behind his wife, determined to keep her from falling this time. However, if she did get tripped up she likely would have caused them all to tumble to the ground. "I have a lot of experiencing herding junior officers. It's the same principle," he joked, as he leaned in and placed a kiss on his wife's cheek.

"Sounds like a plan. Promote Tailon to Grand Moff so we can run away." She laughed as she turned into their room. She kissed her son's forehead before placing him back inside of his bassinet where, hopefully, he could get the additional rest that no one else would. Her attention zoned in on her husband, who brought a smile to her face while kissing his cheeks. She turned her head, kissing the side of his chin. "You're a little scruffy, Claudius." She teased him, nuzzling her nose against his prickly chin. Giving him no other choice, Sierra led him into the bathroom where she began preparing to shave his face for him. It was like the ultimate trust exercise. "I will need pudding after this meeting. None of these people like me. I see how they look at me. They don't need to voice their opinions for me to understand what's going through their head." She grabbed his shaving cream, squirting some into her hand. She carefully lathered his face.

Claudius' life was now literally in his wife's hands as she prepared to shave him. He was slightly nervous as she seemed preoccupied with the meeting. "I will get you as much pudding as is needed," he promised her, as she began to lather his face, which made it difficult for him to speak. "These people, as you kindly refer to them, did not rise to their positions of prominence due to their social graces or interpersonal skills. They are cold, calculating, ruthless people," he explained to her, as he prepared for his shave. "Do not worry about what they think. Always remember that *I* still Govern this oversector," he pointed out, as she readied for apply a blade to his face. His eyes went wide and he swallowed one last time before trying to hold perfectly still.

She smiled. She would hold him to that pudding promise...the most holiest of all promises. She turned on the water and ran his razor underneath it for a moment while he spoke of their comrades. She was tickled that he was allowing her to shave his face. The fact was; he was in good hands. Sierra had to shave so much more of herself that she was experienced with the razor. "Ooh, so you're saying I can use the ‘my husband is the Grand Moff' card when people are rude to me?" She began shaving him slowly. Each brush of his razor was sharp, soft, and effective. She occasionally wet the razor to remove hairs and excess shaving cream. "I decided I'm making a ‘No Smoking' sign for your office too, otherwise the cloud that follows Major Eona around will kill us all." The razor ran over his neck but she did not hurt him.

"Yes. Most ... all ... of the other Grand Moffs have such a card. Perhaps I am regarded as too gentlemanly, too lenient ... too soft. Perhaps that is why I receive such horrid performance from my staff," Claudius said, as he watched every movement of the blade in her seemingly distracted hands. "Major Eona is dangerous. I do not trust Imperial Intelligence any more than I trust the ISB. Her connection to Inquisitor Thanor also disturbs me. Be mindful about her," he said, as she continued her work to make him seem more professional. He had nothing positive to say about any of the officers on his staff other than, of course, Sierra.

"Perhaps you're served bad cards. Inquisitor Thrope was sent here to aid you, instead she made every move to hurt you." She pointed out. Her knowledge on Major Eona was limited. She trusted Claudius' opinion. She let out a little sigh. The last thing they needed was to cause problems with Major Eona and bring another Inquisitor down upon them. "I will. She doesn't seem to be a fan of yours either. You know, she commandeered a meeting right out from under me the other week. I didn't know how to handle it, so I dismissed myself." She washed off the razor for a final time and touched up any areas she had missed. She set his razor aside. "Come on." She continued to prod him, only now that he was freshly shaved, she brought him towards the shower. "What do you know about Vice Admiral Raven?" She asked her husband as she began to undress from her wet, Squib hair covered clothes.

Phew. He had survived the shaving process. "Vice Admiral Raven? Hmm..." Claudius began, as he was ushered towards the shower. "When I first arrived in this oversector I was a mere Vice Admiral myself, commanding a single battle squadron. He was then a Captain, commanding my pursuit line," he explained, as he began to undress as well. The highlight of the morning was about to begin. "As the naval forces expanded he remained competent and capable and therefore benefited from a series of promotions until receiving command of his own fleet," he explained, as he finished stripping down and stepping into the shower.

Ah. So Claudius had known the man for some time. Her husband didn't seem to have anything negative to say about the man either. "When I met with him the other day, I could tell he was competent. He was very respectful as well. It seems he just wants to see the war end. I felt compelled to help him with the communication problem. You really have nothing bad to say about him?" Nude, Sierra made her way into the shower. The young woman was watching herself as to avoid falling in. Warm water instantly washed over her body, which had become cold from being damp for so long. She let out a happy sigh while the water ran through her blonde locks. As she turned towards Claudius, the first thing she did was run her hands over his face. "Oh look, I didn't do that bad. I didn't injure you either." Her lips locked with his. Ultimately, the meeting would pass. At the end of it, there would be pudding and a loving husband. Nothing anyone said could change that.

"You're naked in the shower with me and you want me to talk about some other guy? Oh, I see how it is," Claudius teased, before giving her a playful version of his pout. "I am sure he is a capable officer, but he is no Claudius Rodney," he said, as he moved towards her, pressing against the wall of the shower enclosure, determined to get her dirty before they got clean. As he prepared for his intimate time with his wife, he reflected on what an extraordinary morning it had been. They had awoken to the sound of predawn pool time, the kidnapping of their son by their daughter, an injury, a parade of avians, and an impromptu house call by Doctor Bailo. Now they had just enough time to share between them before having to shuttle up for a meeting neither of them wanted to attend.

His teasing made her laugh so hard. The very last thing she wanted was to continue to talk about Vice Admiral Raven while she had her intimate time with her husband. "Mmm. You're right. Let's talk about him. The *Governor*." Sierra had a way she said his title which made it sound like velvet from between her lips. Pressed against her, Sierra happily realized that they were about to have a long conversation about Claudius Rodney. "I love you." If Sierra hadn't experienced the morning she had, she would have never believed it to be possible. The thing was...despite the insanity and bruising her rear end, she was *happy* to live out each of these days with Claudius. At the end of the unpleasant meeting, they'd be together again. As their bodies became more closely coiled together, Sierra Rodney felt happier than she ever had. Unlikely as it was, she had an incredible life that she wouldn't trade for the world.

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