De author seez: Believe it or not, the (as yet untitled) sequel to "Other Lives" is already in pre-production. Here's some test footage for your enjoyment. Consider it one of those annoying codas you get after the credits finish rolling in the theater these days."Galactica LSO, this is Viper two nine nine gulf echo. Requesting approach."

"Viper eight seven seven, Galactica. Vector one-one-point to the horizon."

"Vector affirmative. Set-conn?"

"Set Condition is three."

"Roger that. Approach vector confirmed."

"Viper eight seven seven, you are cleared for approach. Speed one seven five, port bay."

"Port bay, affirmative."

"Checkers green. Call the ball."

"I have the ball. Commencing final approach. Reducing speed to point-two-five to burn."

Funny how you never forget some things, Starbuck snickered to herself as Glactica's landing pod approached. How to conduct a landing approach while flying on manual was thankfully among those little tidbits. This was trickier than it actually looked on the outside: it meant the pilot had to bring their bird in to settle directly onto the dock elevator using just eyes and instruments.

Given the elevator's platform was just over 11 meters long and seven meters wide, with the landing pod itself being nearly 60 times as long and 15 times as wide, it made for a bit of a challenge to follow the navigational lights that made up the 'ball' and line one's bird up perfectly with what was otherwise a custom-fit platform.

Yet Starbuck easily brought her shiny new Mark VII onto the correct heading, keeping the hyper-reactive nose even with the landing deck, and fired her lateral thrusters so the plane's own momentum would bring her into land as smooth as if her guided by the hand of Zeus himself. The instant she felt the landing gear touch down, Starbuck hit the nose thrusters in tandem with dropping her wing flaps. This effectively 'pushed' the plane to settle on the deck as surely as if she'd hit an old-fashioned arrestor cable and killed all inertia.

She felt the telltale hum of the magnet plates in the landing struts kick in as the elevator began is brief descent. Anxious as she was, excited as she was, Starbuck restrained herself from undoing the catches to her helmet and gloves. No sense in taking a foolish risk or breaking some minor regs her first hour aboard.

She knew herself well enough that she'd be doing all that and more before the day was out.

Instead, Starbuck sat patiently in her plane as it was lowered into the hanger deck. She winced a bit at the powerful lighting that flooded the place; nearly six hours in the cockpit, with only her instruments and helmet providing any illumination against the void of space, had left her a little on the photosensitive side.

Blinking away both tears and illusory spots, she flipped the necessary switches to shut her bird down as the elevator finished its descent. Giving her instruments a final once-over, satisfied she hadn't forgotten anything, Starbuck popped the canopy seals and shoved it forward. One of the knuckledraggers on the deck pushed a step-ladder to stand beside the plane as she pulled herself up and out of the cockpit, pausing long enough to open the metal colar at her neck and pull off her helmet and gloves.

The slight tremor in her legs as she descended the ladder had nothing to do with simple fatigue and Starbuck had to fight the urge to look all around and gape and droll like a rook on their first deployment (conveniently overlooking how, technically speaking, that's exactly what she was). Instead she looked directly at the CPO standing before her and mirrored the parade ground worthy salute he gave her.

It would later occur to her that normal protocol dictated a Section Head or the DCAG should greet a newly arrived pilot, not one of the deck crew. Kara decided not to immediately question it and just asked the traditional question of "Permission to come aboard?"

"Er, granted, ma'am. Uh, welcome aboard," the Chief stumbled. He was a beefy one, with an accent she couldn't immediately place. "CPO Tyrol, ma'am."

"Captain Thr -- uh, Adama." Kara automatically emphasized the second syllable to her married name. It had become something of a habit, a way to muddy a connection that seemed to cause endless complications for herself and her family these days.