Watch that left hook

Aloha – If you have followed the antics of the some of the characters in the Demeter series you’re aware that Debbie’s character is a fun character that tends to react, sometimes without thinking.  Meanwhile, Becky’s character is the quiet character that likes nothing better than a corner and a good book.  The following provides a bit of role reversal in Haumeah that we’re moving toward final editing (third party) on.  Enjoy!

“It’s going to have to do,” Ryder responded.  “I anticipate a reaction from the Sagittarius fleet within five days.  I don’t think they’ll move faster than that after the fiasco with Admiral Jaeckel, but no more than seven days.  That’s too soon.  I have an idea for some delays, but seven days is it.  We still need ten days.  We won’t even have all the light cruisers in for training for another two days.  I’d like to put a permanent sock in Derval Sochal’s mouth,” he finished.

“Probably won’t fit right now,” Debbie commented as she and Becky entered the drawing room.

Becky blushed brightly.

“I assume I know why you’ve summoned us,” Debbie responded jauntily.  “Vaughn’s big-mouthed sister was bragging she’d toppled your house of cards.”

“What did you do?” Ryder asked morosely.

With an over dramatic flair Debbie pointed at herself with both hands, “Me?  I didn’t do anything,” she affirmed.  Smiling broadly she finished, “Now slugger over here I can’t say the same for.”

All eyes turned toward Becky.  Ryder looked at her closely.  Guilt was written all over her face, as she looked down at her hands.  He noticed that the right hand was scuffed up as if she had taken a fall, then he gasped, “You didn’t!”

Becky looked him in the eye, “I’m afraid I did.”

“I waited for her left hook to finish things up, but that Sochal girl fell like a rock as soon as Becky smacked her in the mouth.  It was amazing.  I wish I’d thought to record it, but it happened so suddenly.  Big mouth spouting off, then whammo,” Debbie smacked her closed fist into her palm with an echoing effect.

“I’m surprised they let you go,” Barry interrupted, while Joel stood with his mouth agape staring at Becky.

Becky finally spoke, “I don’t think they knew what to do.  About half the people in the crowd cheered, and the other half looked like Joel does now.”

Joel closed his mouth with a snap.

“It helped that Vaughn’s dad and Vaughn got in a war of words with Vaughn and Derval’s mom.  The scene was a bit chaotic when we left.” Debbie added.  “I can’t wait to tell Cynthia about this, pow” she swung her arm into the air again for effect.  “Wish I’d thought to do it first.  I bet she’d still be unconscious if I had.”

Ryder fought to keep a grin from creeping back into his face as he visualized over and over again timid Rebecca Creer punching out Derval Sochal.  “Okay, anyway, you can probably guess why I need to see you then.”

“Slick reaction,” Debbie and Becky said in unison.

“Afraid so,” Ryder agreed.  “We have ten days left until the Orion Task Force arrives, if I’m counting my days correctly, and I know that I am.  We have five to seven days before the Sagittarius fleet responds by the most probable scenarios I’ve been able to run. ”

“Won’t they be here tomorrow?” Debbie interrupted.

Ryder’s grin widened to a painful smile, “If you were commanding the Sagittarius League fleet I suspect that you would be here tomorrow.  But keep in mind, Admiral Jaeckel ran out of the Haumeah belt in fear of a sizeable Orion fleet already in the belt.  I’m sure the debate over what kind of force we have here already is a point of serious contention.  So five to seven days.  This is a better scenario than Demeter was.  We know the fleet will be here and when.  We don’t have to hold out for weeks, we just need a few days.  Unfortunately, you also only have a few days to organize the Haumeahan fleet with Vaughn, who should be here shortly.”

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