Robyn walked back into the Admiral’s office after the Sergeant had finished his little speech. The Admiral had a crooked smile.

“Robyn are you a spy?”

“Excuse me sir!”

“It’s a simple question. Are you a spy for those rogue scientists?”

“No sir! I’m not spying for anyone, other than you. I mean, if you were to ask me, that is. No, I would never be disloyal to you.” He caught himself rambling and shut up.

“Well, it would seem we have a spy in our group, who is feeding info to the scientists.”

“Sir, you don’t think I’ve been disloyal to you or your cause, do you?”

“No I don’t; just being a little facetious. That’s what the Sergeant’s big secret was about. Now, what do we do about it, if it is indeed true? Remember this started from a rumor, but it makes perfect sense, How else could those rouge scientists know our people had a problem with that test. First, two ion trails, then none, suggests they help them instead of hurting them. ”

“Well, we obviously need to find out if a spy exists and who it is.”

“Yes, but how? I would prefer not to alert the entire base. That could backfire and make us look like fools or drive him or her to ground and we may never know who it is.” This discussion continued for quite a while with these two men trying to decide how to catch this alleged spy or if such a person existed at all. It seems this type of spying was a dead art, therefore, no one knew how to catch one.

The Admiral had decided that Robyn should have a talk with Sergeant Turk, reinforcing his vow of silence.

Robyn found him in a storage area, with some of his men, taking inventory.

“Sergeant, the Admiral told me what your little meeting was about. Have you seen or heard anything worth reporting.”

“No sir, not yet. Just what should I be looking for?”

“That’s a good question and I’m not sure I have an answer for you. I guess you should keep an eye open for someone sneaking around. You know, someone up for no reason when they should be sleeping, or being in an area restricted to them. Whoever it is must have some kind of communication device, but I have no idea what it looks like or how big it is.” The Sergeant nodded his understanding.

“If I catch our culprit do you want me to take him or her out?”

“No, don’t let him know you are on to him. Just report it to me or the Admiral. He wants to keep this quiet for as long as possible. If we play it right, he may just lead us to those rogue scientists.”

“Yes sir, I’ll be real careful to not let this out. Don’t worry, you can count on me.”

“I know we can. That’s the reason we have entrusted you with this info. The Admiral also wanted me to inform you that he will have your Captain give you whatever latitude you need to help us catch this bird.”

“Thanks. I was going to ask for something like that, but I see the Admiral is way ahead of me. Sir, I’d better get back to my men before they start asking questions.”

“Very well. Good luck.”

The Admiral was beside himself. If a spy existed, he really had no idea how to catch one as quietly as he would like. He and Robyn had many conversations on the subject with no real luck yet. During the most recent meeting, a light started shining over the Admiral’s head.

“Robyn, you made a comment in the beginning about a communication device, remember?”

“Yes sir, I remember.”

“I don’t really care about the device. This base has to many hiding places for us to ever find it, but it’s the signal that may lead us to pay dirt and in two different directions at the same time.” Robyn started thinking and came up with a new idea to enhance the Admiral’s idea.

“Sir, let’s bring up another scientist from Earth to help discover how to analyze and track that signal. I think it’s a good bet such a scientist won’t be a spy and we can make it sound very legitimate to the Government and to the scientist too. What do you think?” The Admiral had a big smile before Robyn finished.

“I knew you were good for more than polishing my brass. That’s an excellent idea and I’ll tend to this personally. I need to go back down anyway.” After several less important issues were resolved, Robyn had his hopes dashed.

“Admiral, do you need my help on Earth?”

“Sorry, not this time. We have a spy running lose up here and our good Sergeant may just find something or someone that would instigate a report. I need you here to receive such a report or our Sergeant may decide to take matters into his own hands.”

“Yes sir, I understand.”

The Emperor hadn’t invited the Admiral to sit down yet, so he was standing in front of his desk.

“Well Boyd, I hope you have good news for me.”

“Sir, I have some good news, but I also have some bad news. I’ll give you the bad news first. We lost two pilots in a test. Now we are at a stand still until we figure out what happened and fix our mistakes.”

“I guess some loss of life is to be expected. After all those scientists lost someone awhile back. What is the good news?”

"Sir, I didn't say they are dead. They are just lost. I think we have devised a way to track those scientists and maybe be able to locate them once we correct our mistakes. I’ll need a specialist to go back to the moon with me to implement this plan though.”

“Take whoever you need, if it will help find those rogues.”

“Thank you sir.”

“Is their anything else.”

“No sir, I’m afraid not.” That ended the meeting and the Admiral breathed a sigh of relief on the way out of the Emperor’s office.

“Admiral, Lieutenant Wiggins is here to see you.”

“Show him in.”

“Sir, it’s Lieutenant Cathy Wiggins.”

“Oh, well, show her in Chief.” The Chief Petty Officer escorted her in.

“Lieutenant Cathy Wiggins reporting as ordered, sir.” After several minutes, the Admiral looked up from reading her file and saw a young woman who had maybe fifteen or twenty pounds to much on her. She was a busty woman, but carried it well. James Boyd instantly became Admiral Boyd which is the personality she expected. Now the testing begins. She obviously respected him or maybe just his rank, never the less, she was at rigid attention and the right hand was in perfect position for their salute. The Admiral finally stood and returned her salute.

“At ease Lieutenant.” She relaxed a bit and put her left hand behind her back. Her cover was tucked under her right arm, the right hand across her stomach. The Admiral sat back down and picked up her file.

“I see here that you are a communications specialist. Are you familiar with earth based or space communication systems lieutenant?”

“Sir, I have been to space once and my assignment was first officer behind the communication’s engineer. I also have extensive land and sea based communication experience.”

“Lieutenant can you keep a secret?”

“Sir, what secret!”

“Any secret that you are entrusted with.”

“I sorry sir, you misunderstood. That is a pat answer I give if someone gets nosy.”

“I see, very well. I am transferring you to our moon base. We are going to find out just how smart you really are. You will head up a project to detect, analyze, and track a new type of communication signal.”

“Thank you sir. I’ll certainly do my best. May I ask the Admiral a question?”

“Very well, go ahead.”

“Is this assignment in relation to those lost scientists?”

“Yes it is. Do you have a problem with that?”

“No sir, none at all.”

“Very well. Be ready to launch in forty eight hours. Dismissed…… and Lieutenant remember that pat answer.”

“Yes sir, I will.” She came to attention, turned to walk out. The Admiral noticed she had a much lighter step as she walked to the door. Because of the corrupt and overpowering government, almost everyone welcomed the opportunity to leave the planet. Despite the assignment, it was viewed as an escape when an order was issued to leave their home planet.

“Lieutenant.” She stopped before she got to the door.

“Yes sir.”

“Can you keep a secret, because that’s not the only one you will be privileged to know?” She stood there not knowing what to say for a few seconds.

“Sir, knowing how much the Emperor hates secrets, that suggest you are planning a mutiny.”

“Dismissed lieutenant.” She left with a puzzled look on her face.

August 15, 2020 09:51

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