By the Gods! This planet is an incredibly beautiful and welcome sight! I’ve spent my entire lifetime, forty-eight years, aboard this vessel. Genesis… the focus of all of our dreams… and so few are left of the original generation who boarded Divine Scepter from the moon base shipyard. Sensor scans have given us incredible images of this lush jungle planet but can we breathe the air? Is there an indigenous race of beings that will oppose our presence on their home? Did we escape certain death on Earth only to fall victim to some other deadly disaster? So many unanswered questions…
The mantle of leadership weighs heavily upon me. I’m exhausted from maintaining discipline among my Navy and Marine staffers. These good men and women are accosted daily by arrogant Crusaders who delight in flinging insults and verbal barbs. And if my staffers reciprocate, they can be charged with blasphemy and sentenced to execution by spacing! The women have it the worst, being continually accosted for sexual favors. The Crusaders are getting more corrupt with time. Hopefully, when we move to the planet, the situation will improve. It certainly needs to!
And yet – I’m grateful to be in command of these dedicated men and women in the Navy and Marine Corps. My executive officer, Helena Romano, is my strong right hand. I know I’d be lost without her… especially since I lost my sweet wife, Marla, to that dreadful disease. Helena is a great role model for my daughter, Alexis, who, Gods help me, wants to take Navy officer training. I so want to protect her… she’s all I have left. Gods help any Crusader who turns a lustful eye on my Alexis.
The tasks ahead of us on Genesis are formidable. I hope I’m still young enough to withstand the demands on my time, energy, and creativity. It is such an honor to be the Navy CO who builds the first Navy HQ on Genesis, establishes the first Marine Corps base, and creates the Navy Yard attached to Scepter. Imagine… expanding the Navy beyond UNS Divine Scepter… building capital warships, cruisers – an entire fleet! We can use those ships to explore this star system and others beyond it. We’ll need an officer-training academy in the Capital to turn out the dedicated officers, eager and able, to command those vessels!
Oh Marla! I crave your arms to hold me in the night when the fears beset me. I miss your quiet ways and your wisdom – especially where Alexis is concerned. Our daughter adored you. She still does, and misses you terribly! I can hear her quiet sobs in the night. Are you still with us, my darling? Can you see how your daughter has grown – how beautiful she is becoming? She has your sense of humor, Marla – I so love that about her. Our girl is a strong woman now. Alexis will not allow me to be protective of her – as I was when she was a child. She has become her own, independent person, and Marla… she’s the image of you…
I wonder… will our society survive long on Genesis? We, in the Naval class, don’t believe in that religion, that church… that hogwash. But we play along when we’re in the presence of Churchers. I find High Chancellor Hayes so tiresome – an empty-headed blowhard! He thinks leadership is about playing to the crowds – to the pinheads of his Council. That man needs to be schooled… dare I? What might happen to Alexis if I overstep…? Is there any hope that the tasks involved on the planet will mellow him? I wonder. He’s no Vicar of the Gods! I hate everything he stands for – his attitude and his disdain for non-believers. His Crusaders, in their torment of my people, are just walking in his footsteps.
Hmm… “my people”. Yes, all the people of the Naval class are my people; they look to me. Oh Marla… I’m powerless in the face of Churcher fanaticism… or am I? You used to tell me that the most powerful leaders teach by example. You counseled me to be calm – to rob the fanatics of their fire. Calm, reason and wisdom are my only weapons. I know that… help me to not forget. Marla, my only love, I will have you in my dreams.