Surface Warfare – 110

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Mikey (Mk) was charged with mis-setting a CIWS gun (6,000 rounds/minute) and nearly hitting a boat of disembarking marines during a politically charged training exercise in Florida – all in the setting of two arrogant and abusive leaders. As fire control man aboard the USS Wake Island he had taken over control of shooting down a drone after the prime control center had a malfunction. According to proceedure, the drone should have gone around again but Capt Lyle ordered Mk to go ahead when Marine Colonel Pergament said he didn’t have time. Mikey told the XO he “didn’t do it,” a “little too loud” so Lyle threw him in the brig on bread and water for 3 days; which is where Bud (B) found him. Bud begged the JAG, Chegwidden (C), to let him go “assist” Mk (and C didn’t send anyone else?) and was allowed to go. He then began asking questions of the crew. Mikey’s apprentice, Harold Schofield, claimed that he had checked the “no-fire” settings and found that they were correct. The landing boatman said the marines had been off course and had corrected. Pergament took issue of Buds questions and sent him too, “unofficially,” to the brig for 24-hours to “question his own brother.”

Chegwidden sent Mac (M) to straighten it out. Bud told her that she was a “marine and could break through their wall of silence.” Pergament told her that she “was a marine and could break through the navy crap.” The infighting continued between marines (who used all the water and took two pieces of pie each) and sailors and their leaders. When Mk got out of the brig, his buddies told him he should have aimed higher to actually hit the “jarheads.”

In addition, local environmentalists were trying to obstruct the navy’s use of Florida land after a mishap in Puerto Rico had killed a civilian and the governor had kicked the navy off their routine practice site. When M asked Lyle why he didn’t have the drone go around again he got angry with her too. So C then sent H to settle things down. Harm saw the series of mishaps as a pattern. A protest rubber raft had steered directly at the ship “looking for an incident which would make headlines.” The protesters all jumped in the water then sent their boat into the ships hull. Harm spoke with a female protestor and found that she knew of the gun incident and even Mikey by name. Noticing the groups hurried, poor planning of the incident he realized it had been instigated at the last minute because they thought the exercise would have already been canceled. She then confessed that the group had “hacked into the navy computer and caused the gun accident.” Harm recommended that the exercise be cancelled which then ticked off BOTH Lyle and Pergament.

So Chegwidden, the SECNAV and Webb (W), all came down to make people play nice! (W ostensibly thought it might be a Cuban plot to get the navy back to Puerto Rico.) Harm conjectured that the protestors might not have actually hacked into the computer but had a spy instead. He suggested that Mikey “walk them through it.” Mikey only left the console twice, once for a 5 min head break and then again afterwards to see what had happened after the firing. Both times he locked his station but said that Schofield had access. Harm “chatted” Schofield into admitting that his girlfriend Jennifer had talked him into sabotaging the gun so that it would fire close to the marines.

Chegwidden was receiving an award at a Surface Warfare Ball and B had been assigned to write his speech. Chegwidden panicked through the whole episode that the speech wasn’t written. Singer (S) was to have gone with a Lt Cdr assigned to the joint chiefs. Harm with Renee, C with Walden and M stag. Singer offered to get M a date which she declined. Walden wanted to meet all Cs friends and C asked H if they were “friends” if they called each other “sir.” Harriet (Ht) worried she didn’t fit into any dress and Renee offered to get a dress that had been worn by Madonna when she had been pregnant. When HT told B, he replied that she couldn’t wear a dress stolen from Madonna. Gunny (G) found Tiner (Ti) with his feet up behind Cs desk and reprimanded him. Singer’s date was a no-show so she hooked up with doofus JAG lawyer “Alfred.” Renee brought Madonna’s dress for Ht but she refused until they got a “ruling” from S who said “it’s Kosher.” Bud “wow’d” at Ht in the dress. Mac was alone until Brumby magically appeared having, without telling M, “reserved” his commission and moved to DC to “be near the one he loved.” Harm and M “looked” at each other as they went into the ball – (hence the season cliff hanger.)

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