The XO is so much more than the curmudgeon at the end of the hall; he is the hammer that drives the CO’s and the Marine Corps’ nails into the horseshoe that keeps the horse running down the track.
I had a blast playing Commander John (“Johnny”) Ozee in the Colony Wars hack of Pelgrane Press‘s new Drama System. What’d he want? Respect. Respect from those he respected. To retire with dignity, with his legacy intact, with pride. What were his dramatic poles? Conformity and principle. Stick with regulations and policy and how things have always been done, or push out of bounds for one last blaze of glory that’ll be remembered long after he’s gone?
He wanted more than that. He wanted the pretty Company security woman for himself, though he kidded himself that he thought of her only as a precocious surrogate daughter. He wanted the station union boss to keep him in the loop, even though Johnny denied information to almost everyone else. He wanted to snub the old money families while still expecting the shadowbox of medals and flag – someone’s flag – when he retired. He wanted to give stirring speeches while underestimating the men needed for all the critical tasks shoved his way.
He wanted the NPC captain who jumped from promotion to promotion like it was nothing to understand that she needed him, even though it seemed fairly certain that she didn’t. He wanted Frederick to take care of keeping the place running, without having to be bothered. He wanted civilians to stop crawling up his ass with their fool problems. Human resources? Company problem. Labor agitators among the immigrants? Riley’s problem.
An unknown thing tearing up the far-space colony and ripping apart marines and company men alike? That’s a problem a Stellar Marine can solve.