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ComNet > Imperial Navy > Archived Naval Story Board > Naval Intelligence: Grey
Topic:  Naval Intelligence: Grey
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  Naval Intelligence: Grey
June 12, 2011 2:47:49 PM    View the profile of Atrasin 
The Lambda touched down lightly on the pad of the NHC Annex known as The Tower.  The Tower was actually part of the Fortress/Academy complex, but over the years it had been separated from the hulk of the school proper.  Now it was the domain of Naval Intelligence.  Driver and Stormz, the only two occupants of the ship, made their way down the ramp.  The appointment was for 3pm, they were early. 

The Wookiee growled, “[Are they here?]”

Driver nodded his reply, “They’ve been asked the question.”

Huffing his approval the NCC made his way through the labyrinth-like halls.  He came here infrequently.  Many enemies of Palpatine’s Empire and the Vast Empire had called this place home, many of them still resided within its walls, and many more of their ghosts did as well.

The cyborg CNO opened an unmarked door, one of dozens, and entered.  Inside sat a being that did not know why they were there.  The fear was palpable.

“Relax.  You are not here as a ‘Guest of Kadann’,” Driver chuckled at the euphemism that had sprouted up over the years, “We have but one question to ask you.”

The being gulped hard, the earlier question had been posed days before.  Now, they were here for the answer. No, and they would never again see the light of an Abrae morn.  Yes, and they would always walk in darkness, regardless of the time of day.

Smiling grimly Atrasin leaned in to their ear, “Will you accept the position?”

The answer had been arrived at almost immediately, but it still caught in their throat, “Yes.”

“[Excellent, you begin immediately.”] barked the Wook as he strode from the room.

The Chief of Naval Operations watched his commander depart, “You had better understand his expectations well, he’s been disappointed greatly of late, and has no more patience for failure.  You are authorized to do whatever is necessary, use whatever tactics and tradecraft is necessary, just get us the answers.  You answer only to the Admiral or me. Understood?”

“Yes sir, “came the croaked reply.

The cyborg made for the door, pausing slightly before leaving, he smiled his most feral of smiles, “Good luck Captain Grey, you will need it.”

The door hissed open and he departed.  The officer breathed slowly, their head hung in exhaustion.  The same door hissed again as a younger officer entered, “Captain Grey. I am First Lieutenant Grey, your XO.  I’m here to escort you to your office and to brief you as to our assets and operations.  Please follow me.”

Grey locked eyes on the adjunct, they were cold and vacant, a perfect Imperial, “Of course Lieutenant…we have much to do.”

Please welcome Captain Grey, Chief of Naval Intelligence.  I’d tell you more, but it’s classified.
CNO|COMD Atrasin|ISD Iron Duke|TF:A|1Flt|VEN|VE [=A=][=^SA^=][=^ME^=][=*MA*=][=FOCE=][=*TG*=][=*Eng*=][=*BO*=][MC1]{BWC}[NSR:1]{SAS}{SWC}(SOL)[LSM][VC:B][DSM][VC:S]
Vacuus Ordo, Nex  -Without Order, Death
All a man can betray is his conscience. - Joseph Conrad
We few, we happy few. We band of brothers. - Henry V
May God have mercy upon my enemies, because I won't. - General George S. Patton Jr.
[This message has been edited by Atrasin (edited June 13, 2011 8:47:34 PM)]
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  RE: Naval Intelligence: Grey
June 14, 2011 9:03:39 AM    View the profile of Grey 
Nobody enjoyed the stakeout, I least of all.  The others’ discomfort had a simple explanation: as the hours dragged on into days and the Suspect stayed dormant, they grew bored, and their anxiety fed upon itself, until a cloud of nebulous speculation seemed to condense around them, crackling with energies both nervous and hopeful.  But my own emotional storm raged far more violently.  I had a much more complete understanding of the situation, and a far greater appreciation of exactly what was at stake: I knew what failure could mean, for myself and for the Galaxy, and as a consequence of that knowledge, I had much, much more to fear than did the other members of my team.

My team.  We were twelve junior Agents, then, all the others lowlier even than I.  It still seems so unlikely, even now, to have been particularly chosen to lead those particular Greys for that particular operation.  How did the Captain know to watch that Suspect, who had been largely ignored in the initial investigation by the previous Director of the VENI?  Why did the Captain choose that group of Agents for such an important mission, with their peculiar skills and relative inexperience?  Why did he single me out to lead them?

Occasionally, in the months after that first operation, I almost managed to convince myself that the Captain must have seen something in me – something worthy, something self-evident, something that nobody else had ever been able to see before.  In my more cynical moments, though, my inner critic scoffed at such vanity, and argued that the Captain must simply have played dozens of hunches in the aftermath of the terrorist strike, in a wide-ranging attempt to unmask the Vast Empire’s foes.  “Your team just happened to be the single hook in the entire fishing expedition which caught a fish,” I told myself confidently.

But now I know that the truth is neither that I am lucky, nor that I am special.  The truth is that the Captain is especially lucky: since taking over the Directorship, Captain Grey’s schemes have consistently paid dividends for the Navy, and we are closer than ever to the answers we seek.  A nearly unbroken chain of successes began that day, so many months ago on Abrae, both for the Captain and for Naval Intelligence.

But, on that day itself, no one could have predicted the successes which were yet to come, and so nobody enjoyed themselves on the stakeout.  While the others sulked in their ignorance, I confronted the awful truth: I was commanding a true Grey Op, and if we failed, we would all be disavowed.  The briefing had been clear enough on that point, if on nothing else.

While the other Agents watched the Suspect, I replayed the strange scene in my head: the briefing room’s glowpanels had been dimmed sometime before I entered, and everything was dark, save for a vague shape opposite the door.  As my eyes adjusted to the gloom, I picked out a slight, humanoid figure, whose features were draped in still-heavier shadows.

“I have been authorized by the Naval High Council to initiate an entrapment operation on Abrae itself,” the figure spoke, in a voice so neutral that I could not even identify the speaker’s gender, though the accent was unmistakably that of Imperial Center.  “I have chosen you to serve as Team Leader.  Your Agents––” the voice stopped suddenly, and the figure tossed a datapad at me, with no warning.  Instinctively, my left hand blocked my face and grabbed the pad mid-spin, even as my body relaxed into a combat stance.  I could not make out the figure’s face, but the corner of mouth I could see betrayed a smile.  “The Target,” the figure said, tossing another datapad.  “Details of on-site insertion and extraction are left to your discretion, Ensign Grey,” the figure finished, using the coded style of address which heralded either great advancement within the service, or impending doom.  What could I do, but nod my acceptance, and walk out?

So, I planned.  I planned, and I fretted.  I fretted, and I deployed my Team.

And then... then we caught the bastard.
Chief of Naval Intelligence
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