The next day North took over the Peepian Command
Center. He left Quantros in charge of The Republic's Forces while he
put his full efforts into re-organizing The Peepian's
2 For the first two days he merely studied everything they had, which
was considerable. He learned they had nearly one-hundred new ships in
storage, plus over one-hundred old ships equipped only with system
drive, sitting on bases throughout the system.
3 He quickly sent some messages to Morn. Did they have any old system
ships? "Sure!" Morn replied, "Hundreds of them!"
4 "Send me two-hundred!" requested North.
5 Next, North went over the crew lists. He found the promotion lists
strange. There seemed to be two sets in each category. So the Officers
that had considerable experience and excellent records were half way
down the lists proceeded by younger Officers with not HALF their skill!
He noticed that each name on the top of the list was preceded by a
circle with a line through it, while the name at the bottom had only
half a circle.
6 North called in his Aide. "What does this symbol mean?" he asked.
7 "I am not sure," the Aide explained, if you have a comparable word
for it. It means a child whose mother and father are married; the two
halves of circle making a whole ...legitimate."
8 "Let me see if I understand," questioned North, "Deserving Officers
are held back because they are the sons of whores?"
9 "Those of honorable births are given positions first," the Aide
snapped, "if there are any left over ...."
10 "I see!" snarled North, "Every promotion list is to be rewritten.
These symbols are to be removed. From now on Officers are to be
promoted by seniority and skill. It is to be done immediately! When it