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The Galaxii Series Omnibus 1 By Christina Engela Characters: 5471

Updated: 2018-06-29 19:02

"Well, you've been the Exo on this ship a long time – and you've been on this ship a lot longer than me…"

"So I should've been the next Captain?" Ripley finished his line of thought for him?

"Something like that, yes."

"Another officer was going to take over from the old man at Spacedock 7 anyway… I'm just glad it turned out to be you."

"So you're not sore at me?"

"Nope." She smiled. "If anybody should be sore at you, it should be whoever was going to take over from Falcone – that is, before you came along!"

Mykl gave a wry little chuckle. "I always thought mere mortals like me had to keep up with the Joneses – not the other way round!"

"Ha!" She laughed. "You wanted a ship – well, it looks like you just got one!"

"Not quite what I had in mind, but it'll do." He quipped as Ripley grabbed his uniform jacket as she leaned back against the desk and slowly pulled him closer. He leaned in to kiss her.

"Isn't it a bit early in the day for that, Captain?" She laughed.

"As you were, Commander Jones – Captain's orders!"

"Ooh…" She bubbled. "Fraternization… I like it!"

* * *

In the inky blackness of space, the stars shone distantly – all but one. Bernardus was the largest and brightest – and nearest of them all, and to any casual observer looked like any ordinary, average sun. The mother of five worlds, three stillborn – lifeless and uninhabitable, Bernardus was also the parent of two bright, young and thriving Terran colonies, Tremaine and Andronicus.

Both were both well-established colonial worlds, and typical of the older colonies of the Terran Empire. Andronicus was somewhat les

ares – and her previous CO, the late Captain Joel Falcone – had rescued him only the previous week!

He no longer felt as relaxed about the job as he'd been accustomed to as an Exo. Nor was he his own boss as a loderunner skipper, who had owned his own ship and owed nobody anything. Perhaps it was the added pressure of being in command, he pondered. The burden of command. COMMAND, he thought. He pictured the word in his mind, with big, leaden, heavy Gothic letters.

Being the CO of a military ship was completely different from his experience of being an Exo, or from being the skipper of a loderunner. There was far more than mere responsibilities to the job. Mykl wasn't enforcing someone else's orders anymore – he was the one giving them… and he was the one who would be held accountable, not just for his own actions, but also for the actions of those under his command. It was called 'the chain of command', he mused – and he was once again a link in it, even if his was a little more embellished and maybe a bit more shiny and gold-plated than the other links in this chain.

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