Xenonautical Adventures – Part 4: What Can We Do?
15th of September, 1979, 18:45
Cpl Wanyal will be allowed to return to light duty in the morning is the word from the medical staff. Though unless something happens, letting her rest and only do recuperation exercises might be better. Same with Cpl Volatar whom they let go after bandaging him up. There will of course still be daily check-ups for all of them, but it’s nice to see how much of a difference the better equipment is making already.
Now who do I set as Charlie-1’s current team? As our only Rocketeer and only Sniper, I don’t want to take Sgts Riddium and Gardes off the team. Cpl Herr proved the value of a dedicated Medic in the last mission. Cpls Labor and Troidell are now fully healed up, so let’s give them another shot. As our riflemen I’ll pick… Cpls Beargal and Cuftbert. And let’s give Sgt Niña some R&R, and put Sgt McNutcase back on the team instead.
There, that should do it, hopefully.
16th of September, 1979, 07:16
In the morning I find two reports on my desk. Firstly a blip from North America about some forest fires that happened during the night. Secondly they finished the autopsy of the new alien. This one they’ve named a Sebillian. First something like the little grey men from the movies (although not so little), and now lizard-men? I did wonder when I was reading the report why that second one ran almost all the way up to Cpl Wanyal before it opened fire. And thankfully their hardier hide is still not impervious to our weapons.
I am actually feeling a little better today. The waiting was getting to me more than I thought.
The scientists say they now have enough data to start a more in-depth analysis on alien biology, to possibly figure out a way of capturing one rather than killing it. If we could somehow interrogate one of these things… still, there are other projects I’d prefer to finish first before we take that step.
16th of September, 1979, 13:49
Got a report of a communications disruption in the US, not far from the forest fires 12 hours ago. It seems like a safe conclusion that it’s the same UFO, but it worries me that there were 12 hours of nothing there.
16th of September, 1979, 23:37
Our new radar array is completed. I stayed up to see it go operational. Seeing the boost in our range gives me a bit of a boost to morale. It’s not massive, but hopefully it will make a difference. Now I should go get some sleep.
17th of September, 1979, 07:43
Ended up sleeping in nearly half an hour this morning. I would like to think no one noticed, as I rarely leave the office before eight anyway, but I’m sure they did. With nothing else on the schedule, I am working on figuring out what I would need to do to allows pets, or at least applications for pets, on base. I’m not really interested in making any sort of zoo here, so we’d have to keep them fairly small, I think.
We are fairly self-sufficient when it comes to base rules, as we need to be able to adapt to situations in a hurry, but the top brass do still keep an eye on things. So I think that regardless of how (or if) I do this, it would need to be reasonably subtle.
17th of September, 1979, 15:16
Based on what we’ve seen of the UFO capabilities so far, and what we’ve seen of what is in orbit, I finished the order for a second missile battery. They don’t seem to have the scale to outright attack us yet, but once they consider us a threat, or at least a nuisance, I have to assume it’s coming. If we could blow them out of the sky before they are able to set troops down, it would be a major boon. Hopefully we should be able to at least thin their numbers a bit.
18th of September, 1979, 07:33
I do an inspection of our new craft. It’s quite a lot bigger than the Condor. And it can go faster, and fly further. It can even field larger ordinance, though I tell them to stick to Sidewinders for now. Until we find something much less able to dodge, I don’t expect Avalanches to actually be able to impact.
19th of September, 1979, 07:15
The new hangar was finished about an hour before I woke up this morning. I’ll be heading down there to inspect it after I finish this morning paperwork. Not that I expect the builders to have done a less than satisfactory job, but it’s part of the process. It gives me something to do.
I believe I have the papers sorted out for getting pets on base. I just need to file them. And hopefully in a few days I can go looking for a cat.
19th of September, 1979, 15:17
An alien abduction in the Caribbean. A prelude to a contact or two close to us?
I was about to go to the mess hall for an early dinner, but I’ll put it off for an hour or two just to see if anything happens.
19th of September, 1979, 23:19
There were a few more blips, but nothing came that close to us for me to even send an interceptor to investigate. I ended up having food delivered to the operations room.
As I headed back to my room, I stopped by the office and found the research report for the alien side-arm. I think the research team have decided to call it a night too, but I’ll have word given to them in the morning to start on the improved combat armour project.
I guess the alien side-arms lose potency quickly at range, so we should endeavour to stay at range. Still seems better than our pistols though, so I’d love to be able to adapt them.
20th of September, 1979, 07:27
It’s my birthday! And for my gift I got more reports of blips happening during the night in the vicinity of Greenland. Oh joy. I’m not gonna make a big deal out of it, but I have a feeling my XO might have done something again, like every year.
20th of September, 1979, 18:09
Surprise party in the mess hall. There was even a cake. It was a pretty good cake.
Made some discreet inquiries about cats and kittens to buy in the vicinity. Just checking my options.
21st of September, 1979, 07:28
The Americas seem to be the hot place for extraterrestrial activity right now. Several reports from both North and South America. Nothing we can do about it, unfortunately.
22nd of September, 1979, 07:41
No new reports since yesterday morning. I will be heading out for a quick trip to look at cats. Should be back in two hours at most.
22nd of September, 1979, 10:12
Major Merrywhiskers is currently hiding under my bed. I hope to be able to lure her out with food in a bit, but I think I’ll give her time to calm down a little.
22nd of September, 1979, 12:58
The quartermaster was able to provide me with catnip, so Major Merrywhiskers is currently zoned out on her kitty bed. I don’t intend to ask why the quartermaster just had catnip lying around, and rather bless my good fortune.
22nd of September, 1979, 15:03
I have fashioned a toy out of string and a piece of paper. Major Merrywhiskers seems to approve.
22nd of September, 1979, 20:08
The report for the new combat armour is in. Heavy, but better than nothing… I guess we’ll go on a case by case basis, and maybe order some extra exercise for the soldiers to help them carry this with as little encumberment as possible. I’ll have some sets made, and have the scientists start on the combat vehicle project.
23rd of September, 1979, 07:02
No new reports. Woke up with Major Merrywhiskers having curled up next to me. Did my best to not wake her as I got up, but she did make some bleary mews before going quiet again.
23rd of September, 1979, 13:33
Communications officer stopped by to say hello to Major Merrywhiskers. While the kitty was initially wary, she seemed to warm up to getting ear scritches.
24th of September, 1979, 08:16
Managed to procure some tuna for Major Merrywhiskers. Kitty seems less enthusiastic than expected at first, but as soon as I go away for a moment it’s gone by the time I get back.
25th of September, 1979, 07:52
The estimated global casualty number is approaching one thousand. Starting to feel increasingly helpless.
25th of September, 1979, 14:23
Major Merrywhiskers threw up on my only rug. After cleaning up the worst of it, I sent the whole rug down to the cleaners. There was so much non-rug around, I’m kinda impressed that’s where she picked.
25th of September, 1979, 16:21
More blips have started appearing, both near Europe and Alaska. Sent Condor-1 to patrol in the direction of Alaska, as far as they can get. Maybe we’ll get lucky.
26th of September, 1979, 08:29
Blips are appearing all over the world, except here. This seems deliberate. I think Major Merrywhiskers detected my souring mood this morning.
Sent Foxtrot-1 in the direction of Europe to see if they’d spot anything.
27th of September, 1979, 08:07
Blips ended yesterday afternoon. Both Condor-1 and Foxtrot-1 returned empty-handed.
27th of September, 1979, 20:20
Second missile battery up and running. Not that it seems to matter, as nothing is even flying into our radar range.
28th of September, 1979, 03:38
Major Merrywhiskers decided that it was now playtime. At least someone has energy.
28th of September, 1979, 08:47
Slept in again. I’m not sure I truly care today. End of month is coming up, and I’ll be getting my first review report while under alien threat. Not looking forward to it.
28th of September, 1979, 13:46
The design for our first combat vehicle is ready. While the alternate turret is an interesting feature, I’m not sure we’d necessarily use it. I’ll have the workshop put a Hunter together just in case, after the combat armour is complete. If there’s a lot of injuries, I’d prefer to send one of these than risk injured troops.
I tell the research team to start on the alien rifle next. I’ll get to the biology in timely fashion.
29th of September, 1979, 08:03
Major Merrywhiskers seems keen to explore the base. If I got a harness I might be able to walk her around.
30th of September, 1979, 07:01
The day of dread. I already pretty much know what the report will say, only I try my best to deny it. I am not sure we will even get enough funds to set up a second base. Though I fear we must.
Going over the numbers, I’d say North America is has been the most pressing this past month.
30th of September, 1979, 11:01
We’re getting blips again. Europe and South America. Still nothing here. The aliens must be avoiding us, surely? I dread to think what sorts of UFOs they’re bringing down at this point.
1st of October, 1979, 00:01
I stay up to receive the report just after midnight. That’s a lot of red numbers.
I’m not sure 1.6 million is enough to set up a second base, but I’m not sure I have any choice but to try. Having lost over 100k funding in North and Central America alone needs to be addressed.
I need a command centre, minimum 3 hangars, preferably four, a workshop, living quarters, more soldiers, a medical centre, a radar array, a defence battery, a storeroom, a Charlie, a Foxtrot, more soldiers… I might be able to transfer Condor-2 to serve, as we might not need two Condors here (I might have to eat those words, but I have little choice). I probably don’t need a second laboratory yet, so we can save some costs there. Those labs are very expensive to build and run. Though a garage and their own Hunter would probably help with having enough troops to deploy.
And I’m going to have to help pick capable staff, including an acting commander. This is going to be rough.