Two hundred years ago, before the terror wars changed Earth, rules to prevent inappropriate relationships and coercion between high-ranking personnel and their subordinates existed in the USA armed forces.
But it never worked well, especially when highly ranked colonels raped women or men in his service. Even if the victim tried to file a complaint, the general could and usually would refuse to bring charges and that ended matters, except statistically the victim, would suffer further abuse for filing the complaint, which explains why most rapes were never reported
Now, 200 years into our future, MAC, the artificial intelligence that runs the SkyRyder Corps, evaluates all personnel and ranks them on their abilities, thus the need to prevent an officer from fraternizing or having sex with someone beneath them is not against the rules IF both parties are willing to participate. Since both parties are assigned their rank and job by MAC, there should be no negative impact if they wish to fraternize.
Sadly, MAC missed the big issue:
As long as General Powel can field promote or demote the soldiers whenever he likes, for whatever reason, he still has excessive power; and as long as Powell keeps a list of every mistake a soldier has ever made and can send it to MAC whenever he wishes to punish the soldier, he still controls his or her future in the Corps; Thus, Powel continues to wield incredible power over his men and women.
And like most humans, he’s not always fair or reasonable. In the excerpt below he demands Alisha to give his men the “same comfort” she has given Logan’s men. He sees it as fairness. She sees it as coerced sex.
By Liza O’Connor
Stationed on opposite coasts, Alisha and Logan must each face their own demons and challenges. On the West Coast, Alisha loses her rank for butting heads with General Powell and soon discovers the life of a private can be utter hell. On the East Coast, newly promoted General Logan discovers his soldiers do not recognize his authority to command. In an effort to retake control of the East Coast Corps, Logan authorizes unthinkable actions. When Alisha faces a life-threatening crisis, will Logan rise above his own troubles, or will she discover love and rescue with her best friend Jack?
The moment the door closed behind her, her ears rang from Powell’s bellowing about her inability to teach his fliers Class Five skills.
“How many passed, sir?” The general had stormed off without reading the scores out loud.
“Tucker didn’t pass?” she asked in disbelief. His run had been nearly perfect.
“I was talking about my soldiers!” the general raged. “None of my soldiers passed. But then you didn’t actually provide them any of your generous comfort, now did you?”
“I haven’t provided anyone with comfort.”
He was in her face, roaring just like that old lion at the zoo, except this time there were no bars protecting her. “You are addressing a general, Private Kane. You will address me as ‘sir’, and you will limit your answers to no more than is required to answer my questions. Is that understood?”
“Sir, yes, sir.”
“Now I want to know why all my men failed the exam?”
“They couldn’t have failed by much, sir. They have all the maneuvers down.”
“I don’t care how close they got. They didn’t pass the test. Do you understand?”
“I want them to pass. You do whatever you have to do to make them pass in three days. You give them whatever you gave Tucker. Am I clear?”
Alisha suddenly felt like a virgin mistress being scolded by her parents. “Do whatever it takes, but keep him happy and get a baby in your womb.”
Logan, get me out of here! she inwardly prayed as she replied to the general that she understood.
“Good.” He returned to his desk and held up a sheet of paper. “I made a mistake with my handling of you. I admit that. I gave you too much rein. Ironic, since that was the exact problem Logan had with you as well. You would think I would have learned from his mistake. Well, I didn’t, but I have learned now. Going forward, there will be zero tolerance in your behavior. You will be the model soldier.”
“Yes, sir,” Alisha said. “I will,” she promised. “I recognize what I did at the assembly was wrong, sir. That will never happen again.”
“Nice words, Private Kane. And they sound sincere. Would that be because you’re expecting General Logan to come and rescue you from having to fulfill them?”
The SkyRyder’s Series, Book 3
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About the Author
Liza O’Connor lives in Denville, NJ with her dog Jess. They hike in fabulous woods every day, rain or shine, sleet or snow. Having an adventurous nature, she learned to fly small Cessnas in NJ, hang-glide in New Zealand, kayak in Pennsylvania, ski in New York, scuba dive with great white sharks in Australia, dig up dinosaur bones in Montana, sky dive in Indiana, and raft a class four river in Tasmania. She’s an avid gardener, amateur photographer, and dabbler in watercolors and graphic arts. Yet through her entire life, her first love has and always will be writing novels.
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