Commander Fiona Fisher: Whoever thought it would be a good idea to pair my sister up with Cruz needs to be shot in the head.
Admiral Gerald Healey: Please bear in mind that this is for the record, Commander.
FF: [Sigh] Do you disagree?
GH: About shooting someone for incompetence?
FF: So you agree that was an incompetent decision?
GH: They completed their objective.
FF: My sister got shot.
GH: She’ll heal.
FF: That’s not the point. She and Cruz bring out the worst in each other. They stop taking things seriously and they start getting reckless.
GH: Your sister is more comfortable with Cruz than anyone else, which means that she has better control of her powers. You and I both know that she has a tendency to lose that control. One more incident and those calling for her indefinite confinement might have their ammunition.
FF: She’s more comfortable with Cruz because they’re both autistic. Are you seriously telling me that there’s not another autistic soldier you can pair her with?
GH: None that she already knows and trusts. Your sister has a hard time letting her barriers down with anyone, regardless of neurotype.
FF: What about me?
GH: I believe the last time we spoke about this, your exact words were “I don’t want to spend the rest of my life being her goddamn babysitter.”
FF: Well, yeah, but if it comes down to me or Cruz, I don’t trust Cruz to keep her reigned in.
GH: Maybe she doesn’t need to be reigned in.
FF: Again, she got shot.
GH: And how many times have you been shot? Three, at my last count.
FF: That’s not the point. They couldn’t have been avoided, this could have.
GH: Look, Fisher, I get it. She’s your little sister and she’s autistic and she never would have signed up if she hadn’t developed powers. But she’s a grown woman who can make her own choices. Her own assessment of the situation is that the mission went as well as it could have, and I’m inclined to believe her. We asked them both if they wanted to stay together, and they said yes.
FF: But this evaluation could override their wants.
GH: It could, but I think they make an efficient and creative team. Given your sister’s technical aspirations before her powers emerged, and Cruz’s natural inclination towards stealth, the two of them have almost every base covered.
FF: What about Intelligence? Weren’t they waiting to snap up Cruz?
GH: They were, until the Judge Advocate General had a word with them.
FF: Her mother put them off?
GH: It seems that way.
FF: So, if Intelligence were to want her again?
GH: They would have the ability to recruit her out of the mutant/non-mutant program, if she agreed. In that situation, I wouldn’t demote you into the program. There are a few other mutants I’m having problems pairing up, so I would place her in a larger team with them. Not that it matters; Cruz is never going to let her daughter join Intelligence.
FF: Maybe. Maybe not.
GH: [Sigh] There’s no way this ends well…
AN: So, hey. I’m working on a new sci-fi series called The Phoenix Saga. It’s got everything. There are mutants, aliens, genetic engineering, cloning, love across enemy lines, space cops… It’s got a lot going on. So I thought, while I was working on it, I’d give you guys a quick look at a couple of characters that we’ll meet in the prequel novella (which doesn’t have a name yet, but I’m working on it).
The prequel novella and first book will be launched at the same time (though I might post some of the prequel novella here periodically before the launch), which will hopefully be in autumn, but definitely before the end of the year.
Keep checking back here or on Tumblr (@lcmawson) to keep up to date with more sneak peeks, concept art, cover reveals and launch details.