Tammy: Rank Stupidity - Chapter 2

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Rank Stupidity  

Tammyverse Book 14

 

Rank Stupidity
 
Chapter 2 of 5
Flight of Fancy
 
 
Shiraz & Snowfall © 2023

 

 
Tammyverse Book 14 - Rank Stupidity
 
Note. This story is set in 2018, prior to the passing of Queen Elizabeth. This is a work of fiction but a number of real people, places, and institutions are mentioned in fictitious circumstances. In short it's a story!

 
 
Chapter 2 – Flight of Fancy
 

Wednesday evening Tammy and Maisie made an effort to get on Joan’s good side by dressing overtly feminine for dinner, although only Tammy was in heels. They had just managed to shrug off their jackets when the recriminations started.

“You put all of us at risk when you were in London, and refused to keep us safe, or even tell us what was going on. Suzie had to do that, because you wouldn’t.”

“No, mum, that’s all wrong. I can guarantee it.”

“That’s not what your sister says? Are you calling her a liar?”

“It would seem that Suzie hasn’t perhaps told you what really happened, or perhaps you misheard her?”

“Don’t patronise me, young lady, I know what I heard and it seem you have some explaining to do.”

“Maisie, Lizzie and I flew back to the UK after we finished work. We were going to overnight at the Epping house but found that Suzie had been sent home early from Thames House. She’d also been told that we were renegades. When it was clear there was trouble my friends got us all into secure, safe, accommodation so we could be debriefed. There was a rule that no-one, not Suzie, not me, not anyone could make a phone call. That was for everyone’s protection.“

“But we had a right to know?”

“There were people looking for me, for the rest of us, and they wouldn’t be concerned for our health and welfare. They had already tapped Suzie’s phone, my phone, and anyone else who could be used or who was a threat. When Suzie phoned here she added this number to that list.”

“One call?”

“Yes, they didn’t even need to listen to the call itself, just the phone’s call history or the telephone exchange records.”

“Nothing happened?”

“Not this time, at least not yet. We managed to put an end to the insurrection and almost all the terrorists were arrested.”

“Terrorists?”

“Yes, mum. Until Suzie called they didn’t know you existed. Once she called you became a potential target. She broke the rules and put you at risk.”

“Then why would she say otherwise?”

“I don’t know but did she forget that she’s signed the Official Secrets Act so should know when to say nothing. Her actions in the past have had messy consequences and yet I get no thanks for fixing her complications.”

“Since she got back here Suzie has told us someone was hurt whilst you were in hiding and you were involved, so were you really safe?”

“One of terrorists found out where we were and tried to take me away. I shot her, in self defence. She survived to see justice done.”

“I didn’t want to hear that, but weren’t you supposed to be lodging with the Queen?”

Tammy glared at Suzie before replying to Joan. “Only a handful of people, other than the ones who were there, knew exactly where we were. We were being debriefed whilst the investigators dealt with a mass infiltration of the intelligence services.”

“And then you had tea with Her Majesty whilst your sister had to go back to work?”

“So that’s what this is all about? A missing invite? Maisie, Lizzie and myself spent two weeks protecting William and Kate from terrorists whilst Suzie pushed buttons in Thames House and at most risked chipping her nail varnish. Meanwhile we put ourselves in the way of live bullets to ensure members of the Royal Family could have a break. That’s why the Queen invited us, in uniform, to have tea with her.”

“Oh, that’s not how it was explained?”

“Maybe it wasn’t, because Suzie didn’t help protect the Queen’s grandson, his wife and their children. She then put all of our security at risk by making a call seeking your attention and pity, whilst the rest of us obeyed that instruction.”

“I see, Tammy, I’m sorry but it appears I was misled.”

She stared at her step mum, Joan. “I did say that a few minutes ago. That doesn’t earn you afternoon tea at Buckingham Palace, no more than Suzie earned it.”

“Okay Tammy, however, you’ve been back here for weeks and haven’t been to see us once?”

Tammy bit her tongue, and chose her response carefully; the wrong words here would result in a frosting of diplomatic relations with Joan. “We’ve been very, very, busy, but I’ll try to do better, mum?”

“Yes, you do that.”

Joan walked away, smiling. That left a semi-bewildered Tammy stood pondering whether she should have conceded so easily on that last point. She swirled the remains of her red wine before finishing it off, before seeking a bottle to refill her glass. Tammy had intended to stick to just one glass but right now that wasn’t a primary concern.

Unknown to Joan, Tammy’s father had been exchanging occasional SMS messages with her since Tammy had returned to Scotland and he knew more about her work than Joan. That should have put him in a strong position but the maternal aspect meant Richard’s understanding of national intelligence work didn’t come close to a mother comforting a crying daughter over a snub.

Across the room Tammy noted that Maisie was being questioned, gently, by Angela. Tammy actually had no idea what her former schoolmate and step-sister was now doing. The last Tammy had known was when Angela had started a three month placement at the Aberdeen Children’s Hospital in early January. She guessed that had finished but Tammy hadn’t heard anything more recent.

After speaking to her father it became clear that Suzie had been told to take leave and to get out of London for a week. She’d clearly been avoiding Tammy but they found themselves next to each other at the dinner table. Tammy’s self control took a turn as her glass was refilled by her father. For someone who felt they had a low tolerance for alcohol, this wasn’t ideal.

“Why are you up here? I don’t remember you saying that you had leave?”

“My manager decided I was stressed, because of what happened.”

“That was weeks ago!”

“I haven’t been able to concentrate, then last week I saw a report about a missing Lord and your name was also there.”

“You shouldn’t have been allowed to see anything about me. That’s one of the rules. It’s not even financial intel?”

“Yes, but I was helping at another desk. I was sent back to financial, but the next day I was told to take some leave. I arrived here the next day.”

The Smart’s housekeeper, Zara, started to bring the plates from the kitchen. Tammy hadn’t been told what to expect but her own plate looked like it was compatible with her diet, just.

There was very little chatter during the meal but it started up in earnest once they moved away from the table. The matter of motherhood came up again when Tammy heard Maisie being questioned about the chances of pregnancy, whilst Joan was also wondering out loud about becoming a grandmother given that neither Suzie nor Angela had shown any progress in starting a family.

Richard took Tammy aside whilst Joan rounded up the other girls.

“Take it easy on Joan, please!”

“Sure, Dad, but she does tend to believe Suzie’s spin and then wouldn’t listen to what really happened?”

“I know, and I hear it all the time.”

“If it was down to me I would suggest Suzie joined us on a deployment but it has been made very clearly to me that she’s a liability. Having said that, she’s probably a better analyst than me and I’m not going to challenge that view. There’s no jealousy from here, but what’s the beef from the other side, Dad?”

“You might be right with jealousy, but it is the other way around. Suzie expects to be at an after party without having been at the main event beforehand. So she complains about missing tea with Her Majesty despite not knowing why you were invited to the Palace?”

“Yep. We also had a BBQ with the Duke and Duchess but before that we had to snare two terrorists. Earlier the same day I took the Duke fishing. The downtime is the reward for putting the effort in. You know, Maisie and I have had one weekend off in two months but we’ve just lost this next one as well because my new commanding officer wants to see us. I could complain, but it wouldn’t get us anywhere. I could equally moan loudly if I had missed the BBQ with the Duke and Duchess, because I was stuck somewhere else, but that would fall on deaf ears. That’s real life.”

“Oh, I fully understand, Tammy, although the reverse is also true when I don’t want to be at a social engagement but I am being told I have to be there!”

“I suppose that was when you worked for the bank?”

“That as well!” Richard looked around to see if anyone else had caught the comment.

“I think you got away with that, Dad.”

“Don’t you dare repeat it, though.”

“I’m not the type to spill secrets, it’s definitely dangerous for my health and well-being.”

“That’s a good practice to keep. Perhaps you could rescue your future wife?”

As Tammy walked across the room she again caught the word ‘wedding’, followed by Maisie suggesting that Joan asked her step-daughter the ever-so important question.

“Well, Tammy? When and where?”

“Hasn’t Suzie already told you?”

“No, she clearly doesn’t know yet.”

Tammy smiled as her father coughed behind her, before responding. “We’re trying to fit it into our schedule plus making certain that the weather is appropriate.”

“So do you have a venue and a date?”

“We have a potential venue, but it isn’t yet booked.”

“You really should go ahead and book, otherwise some of us might not be able to go? We have jobs, you know? There’s caterers, hair stylists and dresses to consider. I’ve done it twice if you need any help.”

Tammy held back. “Of course, Mum. I’ll make some enquiries. Can I just suggest you make certain your passports are in date?”

“Oh, so the wedding is abroad?”

“Not necessarily, but I wouldn’t like that to be an obstacle if we were to hold it overseas?”

“True. Richard, can you check?”

“Yes, dear, in a minute.”

“Now, please.”

Tammy’s phone pinged.

“Do you need an out?”

 

Tammy responded. “Urgently.”

A siren was heard from her phone, that instantly had every pair of eyes looking at her. Tammy stabbed at an Acknowledge button.

“Mum, Dad, girls, sorry, but we’re needed.”

“So soon?”

“We’re on a one hour standby, I need to get home and check what’s happening, whilst Maisie packs our kit for a swift exit. That’s our lives. Sorry, we need to move.”

Richard stopped Tammy before she had reached the door.

“It’s the AGM of Smart Air on the twelfth of next month. I’ll get the paperwork to you in a few days. Please make an effort to attend this year!”

“Will do, Dad.”

The pair made their way out to the car after retrieving their jackets. Soon they were on their way, Maisie drove.

“That was naughty, Tammy.”

“What was?”

“There isn’t a callout.”

“I know, but there was a clear and present danger?”

“Yeah, she wouldn’t give in?”

“Worse than that, I regretted telling her about her passport but then she started to order my dad around. I couldn’t have stood there as I might have told her to forget being at the wedding.”

“What about my own father?”

“Make sure he has a passport; get a form tomorrow and we’ll take it with us, just in case. Get him into a photo booth as well while you’re about it.”

“Sure.”

They arrived indoors, finding a notification on the security panel “Office Now”.

“Oh come on, there isn’t an emergency.”

The word “Now” started to flash.

“Damn.”

Tammy shrugged her feet out of her heels so she could make her way up the stairs quicker and safer. The phone was ringing as she reached it. She hurriedly found the security token and activated it.

“Smart.”

“That took too long.”

“Maybe, Carl, why do you need me?”

“A message from Kim; your guy, Burgess, is on the move again, he’s just landed in Lerwick. That’s not far from you, right?”

“It’s on an island!”

“Oh, yeah.”

“My guess is he’s there to see someone or to collect something, and won’t stay long.”

“That’s Kim’s assessment too. How soon can you get there?”

“Not easy, my plane is out of fuel due to a local supply issue. I might be able to get one of the Smart helicopters but they’re shutdown until the morning and I’m not cleared for those models.”

“You need a chopper that’s available twenty five hours, one that you can fly with your own ticket.”

“Twenty four …. okay. I’ll investigate, but that’s not easy to get authorised.”

“Can't you host birds over at those neighbor's house?”

“The Macphersons'? There's a grass helipad.”

“And you got a ticket for Pumas, right?”

“Yes, but it’s a military ticket not a civvie one.”

“Sort it, girl.”

“Right.”

Tammy put the phone down as Maisie arrived with tea.

“What’s up?”

“Carl says that William Burgess has landed at Lerwick, and we should investigate.”

“Even I know that’s in the Shetlands?”

“Yes, so it’s about a hundred and fifty miles across open water.”

“I guess your plane isn’t ready all the time?”

“No, I’ve asked for it to be ready Friday afternoon, it isn’t a priority. He suggests we get a helicopter!”

“Those are expensive to run?”

“Yes, and I’m only cleared for the Puma on a military licence.”

“And you won’t want to fly one in military uniform all of the time?”

“Correct.”

“Where would you keep it?”

“Somehow Carl knew the most obvious place, there’s an unofficial helipad behind mum and dad’s house. There’s no facilities though so it really is just a drop-off and pick-up point.”

“So, are we going to Shetland?”

“No, Burgess will have likely left before we could get there, although the Colonel can request CCTV from the airport to be certain. In any case, I was previously told I wasn’t authorised to go after him, in fact I was specifically told I mustn’t.”

“Okay, so are we flying down on Friday? I have work all day?”

“I want to leave by six?”

“That’s okay.”

-o-

Tammy was back in class on Thursday but it appeared that news of her return had now reached the former students as she spotted two of the girls as she cycled across to the bike racks.

Tammy was tempted to turn around and ride straight home but figured that would end up just delaying the obvious issue. She chained her bike to the stand, already aware that a camera had been installed to cover that area.

“Hey, Bitch!”

Tammy ignored them and made for the main entrance, knowing that they couldn’t enter without being seen by one of the security team. Tammy reached the door before they did and walked past the uniformed guy near the door but caught another one near the security gates.

“There’s two girls outside who were recently removed from their course and banned from the campus. They may decide to harm my bike now that I’m inside and out of reach.”

“We know who you’re talking about, Miss Smart, they were told to leave the site yesterday as they were looking for your car.”

“Good, thank you.”

She took herself to a bathroom first and took the opportunity to check her face before arriving in the classroom, without coffee. She decided not to say anything to Ben other than a simple greeting.

Her phone pinged as she took her seat, despite being on ‘do not disturb’, indicating a secure message that shouldn’t be ignored.

“The new VC is no trace on intel indexes.”

 
“Tammy, put it away!”

“Sorry, Maisie set my alarm for class start.”

"Well at least you're on time."

The revision session concentrated on the workings of the Scottish court system, and Ben’s prior career as a Police Officer certainly helped with the increasingly vague questions. Nigel was back in class and started the ebb and flow.

“Whose responsibility is it to get an interpreter?”

Ben decided to handle Nigel’s question himself. “That would depend on who is responsible for the case, and how necessary it is?”

“Ah, so in a civil case it could be the Procurator Fiscal or the solicitor?”

“Correct, or even social services, if they are involved.”

“Cheers, ‘cause the Sassenach in court before me couldn’t understand a word!”

Several laughed in response.

“Thank you for your insight, Nigel, I guess you are here freely?”

“Sure, was just a misunderstanding.”

“Good, let’s take a break.”

Tammy decided to check her bike, finding one of the tyres partially deflated.

“Sorry, Miss Smart, we caught one of the girls by this bike but not before she’d done some damage. We also didn’t know it was your bike.”

“I try not to make it obvious. I can’t see any other damage?”

The security guard pointed and Tammy could now see that the rear brake line had been severed.

“Do you have video?”

“Yes, and a name.”

“Good, I will ask my solicitor to obtain this so we can prosecute.”

“The Chancellor will need to authorise that, Miss.”

“Indeed, but I suspect that won’t be an issue right now. I need to make a few calls then speak to my tutor. Do you think you could write a statement for me?”

“I’ll clear that with my supervisor.”

“Thank you.”

Tammy called Smith, Smith & Smith Solicitors, finding John Hibbert.

“It’s Tammy, can you ask Jeremiah to contact UHI, they have CCTV of malicious damage to my bike.”

“Sure, can you email the details.”

“Will do, John.”

Next she asked Maisie to collect the bike in her van and drop it at the bike store.

“Can’t you take it yourself?”

“I won’t have an escape plan, change of plan, collect me and the bike. I’ll skip class.”

“Give me fifteen.”

“Thanks.”

Tammy went back inside and found Ben at the coffee bar.

“I need to go, Ben.”

“Problem?”

“Criminal damage to my bike. I’ve phoned my solicitor and my fiancée is on her way to collect it and me.”

“You’ll continue revision at home?”

“Of course.”

“I’ll remind everyone when we go back in that next week is half term. The campus is open if you want to use the library, but all revision is at home.”

“That suits me, thanks.”

“Don’t forget that the end of year exams are a week after that.”

“Sure. If anyone asks, just say it was a personal matter.”

“Of course, Tammy.”

She walked back out of the main entrance in time to see Maisie pull into the carpark, ahead of schedule. Tammy unchained her bike and pushed it across to where Maisie had stopped. It was only a minute later that they were on their way.

Maisie stopped close to the bike store that had supplied the bicycle but left Tammy to unload it. The store owner was waiting at the door as she wheeled it from the van.

“I saw you pull up, I guess something is wrong?”

“Criminal damage, including a snipped brake cable. Could you do a formal report on the damage please, I want to prosecute the little bitch who did this.”

“I hope you have evidence before you start threatening legal action?”

“CCTV and a witness, plus due cause.”

“Cutting the brake line could be considered an attempt to cause harm?”

“Indeed. This needs to be stopped before someone gets hurt.”

“Okay, Miss Smart, this will take a few days as I’ll have to order a full replacement cable. As for the scratch, I’ll take care of that, it didn’t cut through to the aluminium.”

“Thanks, what’s your estimate for getting back on the road?”

“Tuesday or Wednesday next week. If I can get it back to you by the weekend I will, but that’s unlikely. You’ll be looking at close to £150 for the damage.”

“Okay, thanks.” She handed over one of her cards. “Send me a text and I’ll be down as soon as I can.”

“Will do.”

Tammy and Maisie made it home via Lidl, loading up with fresh vegetables and salads, some of which would be taken to Aberdeen.

Finally back in her office Tammy sent an email to Jeremiah Smith detailing that morning’s events before deciding whether to inform Commander Traeger? She asked Maisie for her thoughts, the girl moved closer to Tammy, taking a hand.

“He’s a traditional officer, who got there the hard way, what would he do with an upstart who can’t follow orders? Then you put yourself in positions whereby you could bring yourself and the army into disrepute?”

“It’s not my fault those girls are making my life hell.”

Maisie squeezed Tammy’s hand. “He’ll say there’s one easy way to deal with it.”

“Yeah, confine me to base. Perhaps it’s best he doesn’t find out?”

“Don’t forget you told him you had resigned?”

“Ah, that could cause a problem?”

“Yes, Tammy, resolve it.”

“He wasn’t like this when we were on the island.”

“Tammy dear, you were effectively a local expert, placed there by the Colonel and other seniors, he had to work with you. You were also on good terms with the Duke and Duchess, that goes a long way to keeping you respected out there, and during the debriefs. But, we’re home now and SNAFU applies. You cannot risk an incident or the Colonel will be forced to put you through officer training or bust you to a Private. Either way you lose any plans you had as well as any special relations you have with the intelligence services or the Royal Family.”

“That bad, Maisie?”

“Yes, Tammy, be prepared to get on your knees and beg.”

“Metaphorically?”

Maisie looked directly into Tammy’s eyes. “Physically, if necessary.”. They hugged. “I love you.”

Maisie went to get them both a glass of water. Tammy waited until she was calm then tried to contact Colonel MacTaggart, but his phone was off. Her options were limited, none of her friends could fix this. She called Geoff Traeger on her secure mobile, he wasn’t surprised.

“Captain, I was hoping you would call?”

“Yes, sir?”

“What are you doing next week?”

“Revision for my university exams, but there’s no classes.”

“Good. You can report to Catterick on Monday for training.”

Tammy wanted to object, wanted to talk to Traeger as an equal, but he wasn’t and he knew it.

“Yes, Sir.”

“Bring that Flight Lieutenant with you.”

“Sorry Sir, but aren’t you seeing her on Saturday in Aberdeen?”

“Change of plan, I’m going away in the morning for a few days. Please let the Lieutenant know. Check your email in an hour.”

“Yes, sir.”

The call ended. Maisie walked in with two glasses.

Tammy placed her mobile on the desk. “I’m not sure what happened?”

“I heard you say ‘Yes, Sir’ three times as I came up the stairs. So, he gave an order and you accepted it? ”

“That sounds right.” Tammy repeated the conversation.

“Was my name mentioned?”

“No,

“Are we still going to Aberdeen?”

“I guess so, you wanted to see your Dad?”

“Yes, Tammy. This isn’t important right now, bring your glass and help me with lunch.

“Yes dear, no dear, three bags full, dear!”

-o-

Tammy logged into her secure email once she was fed and watered.

Traeger-email1.jpg
 
Tammy looked at the bottom line, so Traeger was a DSM – Distinguished Service Medal – holder? Her eye then flew up to the top, spotting the D/Capt – so was she deputising? What was her status?

She tried to put a positive spin on things when she showed this to Maisie.

“You only met Marcus once, didn’t you?”

“At that NATO place?”

“Yes, but you saw how he was trying to mess me about?”

“Sure, but what’s the relevance to this?”

“The Colonel wanted me on board but I was already involved with the intelligence service and the Americans by then. He left the arrangements to Marcus Wade who did his best to screw me.”

“He didn’t, though?”

“No, he didn’t. The thing is Marcus did very little training with me, and some of that went wrong, so my records are probably awful. I wonder if Traeger is trying to put that right?”

“Possibly, but to what end?”

“I’m not sure, Maisie, but I hope it’s for the right reasons and I’m not dealing with another idiot?”

“Hadn’t you best work out your travel and let him know?”

“Yeah.”

-o-

The two girls flew into Aberdeen Friday teatime and checked into the Travelodge. Arrangements had been made for them to eat together that evening in a family restaurant attached to the hotel. It was noisy, but that afforded the four some privacy.

“I don’t want to go?”

“Sorry, Lizzie, but that’s how it is. Didn’t you get orders as well?”

“Someone brought them from the barracks. I was having coffee with Jeremy at the airport café at the time so it was a little awkward when the Corporal saluted!”

“At least you received orders?”

“Yes, but they are Army orders and I’m still RAF?”

“Commander Traeger is S.B.S. We're in a Joint Task Force, Lizzy. Certainly you've heard of those before.”

“Well yeah, but Monday’s a Bank Holiday so my usual trainer is off, but I was planning to do a solo flight.”

“That can wait. I’m hoping it’ll only be a few days.”

“Oh come on! Jeremy’s asked me to see his parents next Friday night.”

“Lizzie, be careful, very careful. You cannot risk a relationship and definitely not a serious relationship.”

“Says the person who shagged her trainer, Tammy?”

“And just exactly where did you hear that?”

“One of the SAS told me. Well?”

“Now is not the time, neither is it your business, Lizzie.”

“So don’t lecture me about relationships.”

“We need to have a talk about professionalism, Flight Lieutenant.”

Thomas Staines shook his head. “Ladies, I don’t care what’s going on but I also don’t want to hear it at a dinner table and most certainly not in a public area!”

Maisie did her best not to giggle as Tammy and Lizzie obeyed the retired Staff Sergeant. Eventually Thomas went to the loo, Tammy took Lizzie outside whilst Maisie minded the table.

“Firstly, you are attending a civilian course, but you remain a serving member of the armed forces and I am your commanding officer. Your comments in there were not appropriate. Understood?”

“Yes, Captain.”

“Good, Lizzie, now I get the feeling that Commander Traeger doesn’t like the arrangement we have here.”

“It’s not regular army, or RAF, for sure.”

“I know, but the regulars wouldn’t be able to gain the skills I have and those that you are going to have.”

“Which I appreciate but I still don’t know why I’m doing this?”

“And I’m not sure we can tell Traeger. What do you know about your last medical?”

“There was a question, they said they might want me to do another fasting blood test?”

“You have a hormonal imbalance caused by a genetic variation.”

“You’ve been told, why not me?”

“I was sent a copy of your medical report as I’m your immediate superior, but I have a copy in the hotel room for you.”

“Okay, but what is it, and will it affect me?”

“We’ll have a chat tomorrow, but carry on as before.”

Tammy and Maisie walked back to their hotel room, waiting until they were inside before saying anything. They sat on the bed, holding each other.

“Is Lizzie stupid, Tammy?”

“Hormonal yes, but as for stupidity – I don’t know.”

“So she’s allowing this boy to make the moves because she thinks she needs it?”

“Perhaps. Don’t forget she still has an unresolved plumbing issue and I have no idea if she’s seeing a gender counsellor yet.”

“Wouldn’t you be automatically told?”

“No, but my guess is that she wouldn’t know how to book one privately, plus she’s probably still registered with Dr Adi in Thurso?”

“My dad doesn’t know about her?”

“No, and shouldn’t know about me, Maisie”

“I think he does.”

“Oh?”

“Marcus told him, apparently.”

“He’s never said anything?”

“No, Tammy, because any grandchild would be our offspring and not someone else’s.”

“I see.” That earned Maisie a kiss.

“Family matters to him. He already thought you were weird and Marcus did try to muddy the waters but Dad has thought it through. He knows Mum would have liked you.”

That earned Maisie another kiss. “It’s been a long day, my dear, let’s turn in.”

-o-

The three girls and Thomas had a working breakfast on Saturday morning then Tammy and Lizzie went up to the hotel room to talk, whilst Maisie went with her father.

“So what’s my medical problem?”

“You have borderline androgen insensitivity syndrome according to Major Dearing’s report. In your case it seems your body wasn’t processing your naturally produced testosterone so any female hormones would have a better chance to influence your development. Now that you are on a hormone prescription that changed your blood chemistry a little. It doesn’t, however, reduce your fitness but you might need to work a little harder to keep your fitness levels up.”

“I have been getting tired more quickly since I was on the hormones.”

“So check your diet. I know you received a fitness programme, diet and exercise regime from the course, along with the other materials.”

“Yes, I have them packed away.”

“You were given them for a reason. Get them out and try to stick to it, you’ll get energy but no extra fat. Maisie and I brought some stuff with us.”

“Thomas likes to cook, but I get what he likes and there isn’t a great variety.”

“Maisie will help educate him.”

“Okay, how am I getting to this army base?”

“I’ll fly into Teeside tomorrow so I’ll collect you just after lunch.”

“Can’t I just fly back with you tonight?”

“I only have the two seater here and the second seat is needed by Maisie as she needs to be home tonight.”

“Well, stay for lunch tomorrow?”

“Okay. Make sure you have your dress uniform available, a set of combats and running gear? We’ll visit the base stores if you need more.”

“Okay, can we get on base tomorrow?”

“I’m not sure, so I’ve booked two rooms at a hotel just outside the base.”

“Okay, at least it’s not on base?”

“I’ve provisionally booked the hotel for the whole week, but we can wait and see. We’ll be using my two-seater plane so you’ll have to use a duffel or sports bag as a suitcase won’t fit in the space.”

“Will I be expected to swim?”

“I honestly don’t know, find a one piece outfit that cover you.”

“I’m not comfortable shopping for things like that, and Thomas is no help!”

A large supermarket was ten minutes walk away so the pair set off.

“You haven’t mentioned your parent’s place, Lizzie, what’s happening?”

“I asked a solicitor to handle it for me seeing I was going to be out of the country and now I’m up here. They will photograph everything, ask me what can be sold or junked and what needs to go into storage. So far we’ve done the ground floor. Once the building is clear then we’ll put it on the market, but it’ll be the summer before I see any of the money.”

“Okay, but don’t go spending it in case you need to buy somewhere.”

“Don’t worry, Thomas has said the same but he has never owned a place as he’d been in the army since he was sixteen.”

“Have you had your bonus for the deployment?”

“The five thousand? I don’t know where that came from.”

“Don’t worry, you earned it because the right folk noticed.”

The store was busy this Saturday morning of a Bank Holiday weekend, so the kids were plentiful. Lizzie wasn’t comfortable but Tammy pushed her across to the clothing section. The choice of swimsuits wasn’t great but Lizzie did find one that would help cover up anything that wasn’t supposed to show.

“Pick up a pack or two of cheap undies, don’t take anything decent with you.”

“Good idea, Tammy.”

The camping section of the store had large waterproof bags that Tammy felt would work for Lizzie. She stocked up with toiletries, keeping to the simple theme, along with a roll of clear bags that could be sealed airtight.

“In case the shampoo gets damaged, I once had shampoo go through my entire bag, ruining everything. I was on my way to a training week at the time.”

Lizzie paid and the pair started to walk back to Tammy’s hotel.

“What’s the point of this time at Catterick, Tammy?”

“I wish I knew, Lizzie, because I have very little information. It’s fortunate that I don’t have college next week but I am supposed to revise for the end of year exams.”

“And I’m supposed to be doing revision myself as the training school is closed for the week.”

“You hadn’t mentioned this?”

“I figured I could get down to Edinburgh or Glasgow, or even head down South.”

“That would have been very stupid, Lizzie, as if we had needed to deploy you would have been unexpectedly unavailable – that is less than ideal, at best, and outright irresponsible at worst. You would also find yourself on a charge, although I still don’t know how to process that.”

“But I’m on a civilian course?”

“And you are still a serving lieutenant. You might not be on a base being told what to do and when to do it, but you are not a free agent. If you wanted leave you should have asked. I suggest you complete the current training then take a few weeks off.”

“I’m almost done with the single engine training and should have my private pilot's licence in a few weeks. My medical is on the seventeenth and my exam is later the same day.”

“When did you know that?”

“I had a text last night, it wasn’t worth mentioning.”

“Not good enough. Don’t assume that I’ve been told, but do assume I need to know, Lizzie. What are you doing next?”

“AIS and night certification. I’m also getting my military rotary licence converted and I’ll practice with the Bell that the school has.”

“Just keep me informed, please.”

“Sure, Tammy.”


Shiraz on Kindle

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Comments

You Never Know...

...where each episode of Tammy and friends adventures are going to take them. Thank-you Shiraz and Snowfall for your story telling.
At least we know where Tammy can get her RAF ticket converted to a civil Helicopter PPL as she has been told to do, as she does not really have access to an RAF base to get it done.

Developments

So Suzie still has problems with OpSec, OICA are as helpful as ever (evidently all's quiet over at Ram's Rock given they had time to eavesdrop on Tammy's family gathering), Lizzie's doing well with her civilian flying conversation courses (although still needs to learn to keep Tammy / others in the loop), and everyone's still in the dark about what Traeger wants - is he still peeved at Tammy, is he being a stereotypical obstinate military brat (in the behaviour sense), or is he just genuinely trying to find out exactly what Tammy can do so he can (a) get her records straight, and (b) ensure when he's got a potential mission, she's the right person for the job, and (c) book her on any relevant training. After all, with all the various circles Tammy moves in, to the military she's very much the proverbial square peg in a round hole.


As the right side of the brain controls the left side of the body, then only left-handers are in their right mind!

Traeger

WillowD's picture

I get the feeling right now that Traeger could be working on getting Tammy's training records fixed. Or he could be screwing up by the numbers because he doesn't know to handle someone who doesn't fit the common mold. I'm hoping for the former this time.

Dizzy Lizzy

NoraAdrienne's picture

It appears that Lizzy doesn't even have the brains G-d gave Bastard Geese in Scotland!

Burgess

So the rat escaped? He should have been captured in Norway, I think. Either he was already on the move or someone fucked up on the capture mission. Hmm, is he alone or does he have a team (or a part of that) with him? If he's alone he might be on an elaborate escape plan, but we'll see.
As for Joan: She sure thinks she's the center of the universe. Someone should pull that tooth out of her. Better sooner than later. And the less she knows about Tammy's social life the better for eveyone else concerned, I think.

Thx for another nice chapter^^