By the nods of approval, Helena figured she had nailed all the major points.
"Why?" Colonel Maillaro asked once she had finished her summary.
"Why what, sir?" her response was automatic.
"Why are they forcing us to fight them on the ground? They may have some kind of weakness. And we could exploit that weakness and maybe have a chance of blasting them off our planet," the last word hissed from his breath as if invading Earth had been an affront to him personally.
"That's why you are here. I want a list of potential candidates from your previous location. We are looking for the best. My orders are to build missiles. Your orders are to help develop a defensive strategy. You will also examine our different fighting styles and try to determine the most effective form of combat for these aliens. Do you understand," he bore the weight of his steel eyes down onto her small frame. No need to glance around at the others. They were all withstanding the weight.
"Sir, yes, sir," and she saluted. His face broke with a smile.
"Very good. Captain, show her around," and they were dismissed. She followed the Captain back out into the underground concrete tunnels.
"You ever wonder about any of that why business? Why did they come here? Why did they attack? Why don't they use weapons or bombs or armor?" he asked. She slowly shook her head.
"Ask why about to many things and you just want to cry. This is the way things are. All I can do is keep fighting to try and change them back to the way they were," as they walked, they passed other people in uniform. She kept looking for someone out of uniform, for a matted stuffed lion to be taking space on the floor. And then she'd remember this was a military base. Those things would not be found there.
"That's one way to look at it. A warning though, next week you may have a bunch of people asking why. The Colonel's rounded up some scientists. They'll be arriving next week," he kept chatting as they walked. And then the alarm sounded.