Seeing as what we originally started with was not rally any sort of Intro, I needed to write one, So here is the start of it at least, see what ya think.
The figure, sitting at the desk was imposing, not because of his size, for he was a tall man, simply of average build, however the air emanating from him pervasively filed the room. He seemed not at all out of place, amongst the wall paintings and various military items. Adorning the office wall directly over the fire place mantle piece hung a picture of Queen Elizabeth the 2nd, below which were several photographs of soldiers, which if inspected by the casual observer they would note, were all deceased. These he would tell those blessed with enough curiousness to enquire, were the troopers and officers, lost whilst under his command, a reminder of ones command responsibilities he would add.
The office had an old world feel to it, the wooden timber paneled walls, stained and constructed in a by gone era, oozed Machiavellian feats and simply added to the mystique. Persian rugs adorned the floor, matched by crystal decanters spread across the end wall mantle piece; these merely added a layer of the old world, a sense truly befitting the occupant.
The offices only occupant was a study of efficiency, modern efficiency, for protruding from what must have been a 100 year old desk was the current age, the LCD screen occasionally flashed, highlighting the occupants facial features, at times satisfied, at the moment…….displeased.
There was a light knock on the door, not timid, just…..respectful, sufficient to let the occupant know. “Enter”, was all the occupier of the desk said, not shifting nor looking up, just the single, simple word as he ploughed through the electronic data cascading before him on he computer screen.
The door opened, both in fact and through strode his assistant, “ Sir, I have the OC, 22nd SASR on line two, it’s a priority mater he says”. Placing his pen down on the note pad Major General, Allister Jeffery stood up from his leather upholstered chair, fixing his gaze on his assistant, “ Thank you Bruce”, with that his assistant merely nodded, backing up slightly and closing the heavy wooden doors behind him with rather deep solid clunk.
Walking around his desk to the front, Major General, Allister Jeffery Ret, now the head of the Special Intelligence and Combat Operations Department of the ADF, gently reached over, lightly toggling the speaker button his desk phone, before sitting back in one of the two winged leather chairs at the front of his desk.
There was a light pause as the two telephone systems synced themselves, electronic security whirring away in the background, unbeknown to either of the lines occupants made sure of the security and integrity of their conversations. “ John, you there”, Allister leaned forward somewhat, almost as if the telephones occupant on the other end, might hear him better. The telephone speaker came to life, “Sir, good afternoon, sorry to bother you this late in the day, but we have received that intelligence package from our reconnaissance patrol just north of us, that we spoke about last week”.
‘Ah yes’ thought Allister, “Yes John, I gather it’s potentially what we spoke about or you would not be calling me at this late hour”.
“ Yes Sir, it is, I am afraid, we have significant movement in the area, as you suspected our Northern friends are somewhat troubled by our presence, although it is hard to discern exactly what their motives area at this point in time”.
Sitting back in the chair, the Major General pondered some, “tell you what John, I think you should place your lads on stand by for deployment, I am wagering this will turn rather nasty in the very near future, I take it you have a troop available for rapid deployment?”. The Major Generals features belied no sense of the satisfaction the felt, having predicted this outcome, nor the dread that accompanied it, sure in the knowledge that good men and women were about to be placed in harms way yet again.
The reply from the other end of his telephone connection was not long in coming, the SASR’s current commander Lt Colonel John G Birmingham had already discussed the possible events with his subordinates, as far a operational security allowed, plus other intelligence apparatus within the ADF.
“ Yes Sir, I do, we have them on 12 hours notice, number 2 troop, possibly our most experienced crew, I should also point out Sir, that this particular troop has a number of exchange soldiers in it and our highest number of expat soldiers, although this has no operational impediment on the unit I might add”.
Smiling ever so slightly at the Colonels gentle reference to other parties and their operational involvement or lack there off, the Major General pushed on, “ I understand John, However, lets keep the whole process in house for the moment shall we, I need to talk with the PM and the Defense Minister now, I’ll come back to you very shortly”.
“Affirmative Sir, its not looking good over there, this has potential to blow up in our faces rather quickly I am afraid, do Canberra fully appreciate just what is taking place, mores the point, what looks like its going to happen Sir”.
The Major General, let out a small sigh, both himself and the Lt Colonel had been over this ground when he had briefed him two weeks earlier, on the assets in country and the overall developing situation in Brunei. What had followed had been frank and brutal between friends, one being the current commander of the Australian Special Air Service Regiment, the other, the former commander, but now, responsible for all covert intelligence operations involving ADF assets world wide.
“ Yes john, I hear you, lets wait and see shall we, I’m not about to hang your boys out on a limb all by themselves, that plan by the way is not without issues, I had a very heated discussion with Gibbon over it, the Defense minister however was clear, its what the PM wants”.
‘ Lt colonel Birmingham decided on one last push, “ just so long as Canberra appreciate what this involves Sir, those are my men that will be deployed again and I’m specifically concerned about the snatch team Sierra One, can we get any latitude on the Intel distribution”. The colonels reply was swift in coming, raising his voice just ever so slightly, certainly enough for the Commander of the 22 Special Air Service Regiment to understand, he was now treading on the line the, the Major General replied.
“John, that discussion is over and the parameters have been defined, they are not until you receive notification other wise, to be deviated from are we clear”, The head at the other end of the line dipped ever so slightly, “Affirmative Sir, we are”, disappointment clearly evident in the Colonels voice. The major general pushed on, “ John, I have been in your shoes, yes, I understand we are violating god knows how many rules an international agreements, Canberra knew that from the onset of this year ago, its something we needed at that point and even more so now, in the current environment”. “I will however express once more your concerns, I have beefed up internal on site security, it goes in with the next resupply, but that’s as far as the Defmin and PM are willing to go, I took this job on instead of GG to ensure we looked after our people John, I’m not about to change my morals now, certainly not with so much at stake, please bare that in mind”. The last line of Allister’s had been delivered in a more conciliatory tone, hoping that his good friend on the other end would calm down somewhat.
“ Understood Sir, I wasn’t inferring you would, its somewhat maddening what Canberra has done, lets hope all goes according to the plan, there are a lot of elements to his one, security is going to be a cast iron bitch, but the regiment will do its best Sir”.