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  1. Where does this all end? Lowell Baskerville leaned forward against a railing as he looked out towards the Pacific Ocean. It had been days since the operation in Orb territory and there had been much deliberation about what to do next, more than enough to distract him, but in these quiet moments, Lowell found his thoughts drifting back to that day without fail. There was a lot to think about; the soldiers they had lost, the soldiers they had killed, and, most bizarrely to him, the strange connection that he had forged with Nathaniel Barondel. In truth, the bond had been forged the day they’d met—the operation was simply a progression and not particularly a pleasant one. It was the bond between enemies, enemies that might have been friends were it not for the fact they found themselves on opposing sides in this war. Would we be friends, really? Lowell wasn’t so sure. Recalling the day they met, he seemed to remember they had some pretty fundamental ideological differences. But at the same time, he found that he didn’t dislike Barondel—not on any personal level. There was the obligatory animosity between soldiers, but beyond that… Lowell shook his head. What good did this kind of thinking do, really? It would only make it harder for him to shoot Barondel down later, should he need to. He hoped that fateful day would be the last time they crossed paths, but something deep down told him that wouldn’t be the case. Overhead, a pair of seagulls brayed and Lowell wiped the sweat off his brow with his forearm. When he first arrived on Earth, he had found the ocean unsettling but now…now, he thought he maybe kind of liked it. As long as he didn’t have to be in it. He could still do without the heat though. His phone beeped, alerting him to a text message that caused the ZAFT commander to grimace. A business call, waiting for him inside. The fun never stops, does it? Lowell wondered for a moment what it could be about. A court martial maybe? Not likely—he was pretty certain he was out of the frying pan on that count. It certainly wasn’t a promotion—there wasn’t much further up he could go in the volunteer militia without being on council. Not that he wanted to go much higher anyway. What then? He considered ignoring the text until his curiosity and the heat of the sun got the better of him. -- He hadn’t expected a call from the Chairman of the supreme council, but there he was, Siegal Clyne, looking at him sternly from his vid-screen. Lowell had asked Renato to join him in the conference room as well—the Wolf Commander liked having his number two around both for the image it projected and because, speaking truthfully, Renato had a better memory for this kind of stuff. “Good afternoon Commander,” Siegel said. “Please, be at ease,” Lowell lowered his salute and nodded, sitting down in one of the office chairs across from Renato. “How can I help you today, Mr. Chairman?” Clyne’s stern face seemed to ease once he got some kind of measure of the man. “I’m sorry to hear about the losses your unit sustained in your recent operation. It is a shame that anyone should lose their life in this conflict but I’m sure it stings all the more for a man in your position,” Lowell nodded and glanced at Renato, who wore a withdrawn expression himself. “Thank you, sir. It was unfortunate to say the least but all my Wolves know what they signed up for,” It was Clyne’s turn to nod. “Allow me to move right along, commander, and assure you that what I’m about to ask of you is unlikely to end so tragically—at least, that is my most sincere hope as both a leader and a father,” Lowell quirked a brow, but Clyne went on. “As you know, my daughter Lacus has become something of a diplomat and an activist. As such, she tends to draw quite a bit of unwanted attention whilst touring and is in need of people she can trust to keep a watchful eye over her. So I think, at least. She tends to disagree, but has acquiesced to her father’s wishes on one condition,” Lowell had a bad feeling about this. “And what is that, sir?” “She has specifically requested one Johnathan Locke to be part of her security detail. My reports, of course, tell me that he has recently transferred into your unit. As such, I would like to formally request that the Wolf Squadron act as honor guards for my daughter during an upcoming tour to Aprilius,” Both Lowell and Renato blinked stupidly. Honor guards? That wasn’t exactly what Wolf Squadron was formed for, but he couldn’t just say no to the Chairman, could he? “With all due respect, sir, I’m not sure that’s Wolf Squadron’s specialty. May I ask why John Locke is so integral to this plan?” “Well, Commander,” and Clyne seemed almost embarrassed now. “It seems that Mr. Locke and my daughter are something like friends,” That’s why? Lowell thought. “Allow me to clarify a bit more, commander, without putting too fine of a point on it. While I have absolute faith in my daughter’s choice of security detail, the circumstances surrounding the previous operation require me to strongly suggest you not turn this opportunity down,” So, it’s not a choice after all. I didn’t think so. “Absolutely not, sir. It would be our absolute honor to take this assignment. I’ll have the Wolves prepare for the trip immediately,” “Good to hear, commander,” Clyne smiled. “When you arrive, be sure to touch base with Captain Rondfellow aboard the Descartes. He may have an update for you with regards to the operation and your loadout. Clyne out,” Lowell saluted and as soon as the screen blinked out, turned to Renato, who was smiling wryly. “What did he mean by ‘loadout’?” Lowell asked. But all Renato did was laugh. In a matter of hours, the Wolves were space-bound once more.
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  2. Mai had been busy since the battle. Getting a clear bill of health and all the necessary clearance, she was able to work and get paid. As she worked on the scrap, being a member of the Guild, she also grabbed parts of mobile suits for ORB that they asked for. As she worked, she spent many an hour, like 15 with the others clearing and re-purposing. Mai was even able to get to her down craft and pull parts off of it and was able ot get her family sword, and the lone photo she had, However, nothing else was savable. If she ever found out who shot her down, she would give them a piece of her mind. After she had gotten her stuff, she worked on a project for herself that she felt might be good and with ORB, willing to help her, it was better that way. She was able to get pieces of mobile suits, mainly GINNs and a M! and had a suit built for her. The drawback, she had no idea how to pilot a mobile suit, and hopefully, she could learn, since the suit had to be reprogrammed so a Natural could pilot it. Luckily that was possibility, but she was still learning and had not fully started the process to learn to be a ms pilot. That was where she would need to speak to this guy in charge of the suits on the ship, Nathaniel Barondel. She was known on the ship, working where she was needed due to work and with the suits, plus she had showed that she could be a pilot and as damn good one of both rotor an fixed wing. A friend she had made was the CMO of the ship and she hung out with him normally or the techs but that was it mostly. So, when she was told that he would be available, she was shocked and approached a room, "This looks more like a meeting room than an office," she said to herself in her Scottish accented voice. Shrugging, she knocked on the door, not aware there was a meeting going on and waiting for a response to enter.
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