2 Hours to Redeployment The day for his redeployment to the Truman finally came. Pearson diligently worked on his megaproject, an architectural marvel, designed to increase space where it wasn't possible. It was a sky island, one that defies gravity. It utilizes state-of-the-art and even theoretical devices to keep it running, but Pearson had absolutely no resources to kickstart it, as most of the displaced workers went onwards to the Frontier. Pearson himself was going to be on home duty, as his vessel was finally placed on the upgrade queue, a result of the overwhelming resource pull from existing UN colonies. His son came into the room, obviously gloomy because of his father's imminent departure. The pair redeveloped their strong bond over the period that Pearson was on shore leave, as well as collaborated on urban improvement projects, ocean cleanup, and others. "We really improved the districts at Rio and Cheyenne. I mean, the infrastructure in those areas were just shot, and the buildings were just, you know." "Yeah, great job on your ideas, son. Some of those I wouldn't have even thought about in my well-aged mind." "Thanks, you still pack a punch though." Pearson chuckled at his son's joke. "I'm gonna miss you." "Gonna miss you too, dad." The pair hugged for a while. "Take care of your brother, Jack. I think he's been doing something fishy in your bedroom here again." "I figured. Well, I gotta go. Thank you for giving me this, dad. Keep the peace up there." "Will do." The son exited the room, head hung from his gloom over his father's departure. Pearson solemnly looked on, after his son exited the room. It was the last time that he was to see his son for a long time. He swiveled around, going back to his work, but he couldn't. He only stared at his schematics. --------------------- Approaching the Truman Pearson casually talked with his escorts on the shuttle. They were always the first to meet the admiral after his shore leave's end. This particular shuttle was one of the old testing shuttles with windows. Top brass refitted and reused it as a ship-to-planet shuttle, along with two others. He glimpsed his vessel, still in its current, battle-scarred state, when the shuttle rotated. Bundles of soot from the attempt to save the Pete Knight dotted the vessel, the paint from constant sun exposure was still faded and showing bare metal, and the dents in the metal from prior accidents were still visible; Bush Shipyards planned to repair and upgrade the ship all-in-one. The pilot routinely steered the shuttle into the Truman's shuttle bays. The bay opened to reveal upgrade scaffolding dotted around the area, a courtesy of the maintenance crews that were deployed from Bush. While watching, the admiral jolted in his place, indicating that the shuttle locked in. The bay closed, the all-green was issued, and the maintenance crews returned to their positions while Pearson disembarked from the shuttle. Some members of the maintenance crews nodded or saluted to the admiral as he walked by, enroute to the CIC. His complement went another way towards his quarters to unpack his bags. When he came to assume his position, one of his more mischievous staff members playfully greeted the captain, a test of his belonging on the ship. "I wish you a Merry Christmas, sonny." In the staff member's eyes, he passed, and promptly said welcome back. Pearson looked over his instruments to recalibrate them and promptly stood up to call the crew to attention. "Damn, I missed you all. I hope you all have been enjoying yourselves while I was gone, whether that was shore leave or taking care of the ship. I hope those who were on shore leave took care of themselves while they were gone, eating their vegetables and sleeping eight hours a night. Finally, I hope that everyone is in the brightest of spirits as we are all back together on our ship that we call home. Welcome back everybody." The present complement said the same to Pearson. "Our current orders are to stay on home duty as the Bush boys get themselves ready to upgrade this ship. I heard that they're letting us keep one of the engines as a souvenir as well. Former vessels from Battlegroup Knight are to also rendezvous with us as well as some newbuilds from Bush. For now, you guys can relax since we're not really doing anything. Dismissed to your duties." The complement spurred to work, a more lax work, but still work. They were mainly focused on re-testing, re-calibrating, and re-checking the Truman so that she is battle ready. Pearson scanned the radar for any vessels that are coming to formation with the Truman. One, registered UNN Eye of the Moon, slowly came up and opened comms with the Truman. "Admiral, we want to thank you first for assisting in the rescue operation of the crew of our flagship vessel. Who knows how many more friends or comrades we would've lost without your efforts. Second, our means of business. We are to serve as the second-in-command of the Battlegroup, as per your orders. You know the drill. We are forever indebted, and we will serve as loyal comrades." Pearson acknowledged, closed the comms, and sat back, breathing a sigh. It was going to be a long tenure, but it was going to be an interesting one.