Rodge McCaffrey

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Rodge McCaffrey
Titles Callsign: Rigmarole
Aliases Rig
Skills Ship repair
Profession Engineer, DDF pilots (formerly)
Groups Engineering Corps
Homeworld Detritus
Universe Cytoverse
Introduced In Skyward
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Rodge McCaffrey (Rig, callsign: Rigmarole[1]) is a childhood friend of Spensa who is accepted into DDF Flight School with her. He drops out after their first battle, pursuing the Engineering Corps and getting a job there.[2]

Appearance and Personality[edit]

Rig is described as lanky and has red hair. His eyes are a clear, deep blue.[3] He is often self-conscious, but through the designs he receives so much praise for at the Engineering Corps, he becomes much more confident. Rig is very smart, and is good with machinery.[4]


Flight School[edit]

Rig has known Spensa for a very long time. They studied for their Flight School entrance exam together and Rig received a perfect score. He trains with Spensa at the flight school, but their flight is called into battle after only a short amount of training. In the course of the battle his ship gets struck by a Krell destructor blast, though his shield holds and he makes it out of the battle unscathed. The next day he drops out of the program, realizing that it has only ever been Spensa's dream.[5]

Repairing M-Bot[edit]

Rig received multiple offers for jobs after dropping out, then Spensa showed him M-Bot, a crashed, high-tech fighter which she found in a cave. Rig was very excited, wanting to help repair it. Because of this, he decides to accept a job with the Engineering Corps to acquire the parts and knowledge he will need to fix M-Bot. As he learned more and more during his training as an engineer, he was able to help repair M-Bot bit by bit. He managed to get most of the necessary supplies through his job with the Engineering Corps, though lacked a few items, mainly a booster. Rodge wanted to share the designs some of M-Bot’s features, though many of his features were too complicated for him to understand and explain. Some of the features he managed to explain to his superiors, which quickly granted him favor and respect there. When Spensa managed to get a booster from the wreckage of Hurl’s ship, which allowed Rodge to finish repairing M-Bot.[4]

Experiments with the Taynix[edit]

Along with Jorgen and FM, Rig is assigned to help with the investigation of how to use the taynix as hyperdrives, after Jorgen finds a colony of them in the caverns of Detritus.[6] He worked on the more technical side of the experiments, and created a metal box made of the same material as the one that they found inside M-Bot.[7]

Later Rig was working in the Platform Prime control room, trying to find where the FTL communicator is located. He subtly tried to get her to leave, and FM asked him what he had against her. Rig admitted that he liked her, and they awkwardly changed the subject. They found the FTL communicator, a metal box like the one in M-Bot’s ship, and they realized that if they put a taynix in it, they could use it for hyperspeed communication.[8]

Rig heped devise an experiment for Jorgen, and he tries to teleport using a slug in the metal box.[9] Jorgen tried to teleport using a ship, and Rig monitored the experiment from Platform Prime.[10] When the Superiority was alerted to Jorgen’s cytonic abilities and they moved into position for bombardment, and Jorgen told Rig that he’d be in a fighter with FM. He told Rig that they’d be attacking the planetary cannon, and would need someone with mechanical knowledge to know how to best destroy it once she got up there. He was reluctant to go back into combat again, but Skyward Flight was glad to have him back even for a short time. He and FM flew up to the battle, listening to FM’s music as they went.[11]

After Jorgen teleported their ship up close to the Superiority main battleship, Rig analyzed the cannon and decided it was heavily protected. He told FM to target the controls, which were less shielded. They were soon swarmed by Krell however and forced to retreat. Cobb called the retreat as the cannon began firing at Detritus, but the Engineering Corps managed to get the planetary shield up to block the shots. Skyward Flight regrouped a ways away while Command figured out a plan, and gave the taynix time to recover.[12]

Rig and FM cuddled with the slugs in FM’s ship while listening to music. They held hands, enjoying each other’s company and talking, and FM told Rig that she is interested in him. Once the slugs had relaxed, Skyward Flight and a few other ships touched wings, and Jorgen teleported them inside the shield.[13][14]

After they landed on Platform Prime, Rig went to meet with the Engineering Corps and afterward informed FM that they were going to try using Fine to make the FTL communicator work. As they walked to the command room, Rig and FM discussed what they feared most, and FM admitted that she’s afraid of dying in battle and ceasing to exist. They discussed their days in flight school as well as the taynix, and the topic turned to their experiments. Rig proposed that they try different experiments, and him and FM kissed briefly.[14]

FM and Rig worked on an experiment in the engineering bay, trying to teach the taynix to teleport to a familiar place. They showed Chubs some caviar in a box, calling it “home”. FM put Chubs in a separate box and told him to go to “home”. Though he doesn’t initially, he eventually teleports into the box. They tried the same experiment with two more slugs, with varying results. They headed to the command room on Platform Prime, where Fine had been loaded into the communicator. Cobb called Cuna, who responded. Rig listened as Cuna requested help, saying that they’re being besieged by twenty Krell fighters at the station of Sunreach.[15] Cobb ordered Skyward Flight to depart immediately, and Rig said goodbye to FM as she left, fearing for her safety.[16]

After Skyward Flight returned with Cuna and their staff, Rig had a joyful reunion with FM. They talked a bit, then kissed.[17]

Alanik’s Return[edit]

Are you coming with us? Becuase if not, you should get back to Engineering. you don’t want to be associated with what we’re about to do.

—FM to Rig before leaving[18]

When Alanik came to Detritus and requested aid, Rig and other members of Skyward Flight came to chat with her while she awaited a decision. They chatted amiably, and Cobb came in and told them that Alanik’s request had been officially denied. He said his hands were tied, but heavily hinted that he wanted Skyward Flight to leave anyway. Rig decided not to leave with Skyward Flight, reluctantly staying behind.[18]

Helping Alanik[edit]

On ReDawn[edit]

I’ll help you. But you should know, there’s a lot going on here too. Cobb and Jeshua met with some representatives from the Superiority.

—Rig to FM[19]

FM and Alanik hyperjumped to Deteritus to recruit Rig, since they needed his help overeating Wandering Leaf and fixing Alanik’s ship. He agreed to help, and filled them in on the National Assembly’s dealings with the Superiority.[20] Once on Wandering Leaf, Rig examined the platform’s systems, findings a hyperdrive mechanism, a weapons system, and a shield system.[20]

Interesting. Maybe it requires a hyperdrive to move? Get me someting to stand on so I can get a look above the boxes and see how they’re interfaced with the platform.

—Rig analyzing Wandering Leaf’s systems[20]

He helped Jorgen figure out how to work the platform’s cytonic inhibitor[20], and spent the next few days hard at work, not getting much sleep. He repaired Alanik’s ship, activated the platform’s shield, and helped figure out how to use Boomslug in the weapons system.[21] After the others came up with a plan, he used Drape to hyperjump the platform outside the tree city of Tower. While Alanik and Arturo went to rescue Rinakin and Skyward Flight fought off Unity ships, Rig stayed on Wandering Leaf with Jorgen and operated the platform.[22] When a Superiority battleship arrived to attack Tower, Rig hyperjumped Wandering Leaf up close to it, allowing the automatic turrets and mindblade weapons system to destroy it. A cytonic varvax soldier hyperjumped onto Wandering Leaf to try and seize the command room, and Rig called for Boomslug to help him. Boomslug attacked the varvax, destroying its armor and causing it to flee.[23] The Unity forces retreated, and the Independence faction and Skyward Flgiht won the battle. Cobb called them, and told them to return to Detritus with some of the UrDail officials. Rig and the others thought Cobb was acting strangely, and determined that the man is actually an imposter posing as Cobb, using holographic technology stolen from M-Bot. They ended the conversation, and Rig hyperjumped Wandering Leaf to a point outside Detritus.[24]

Back to Detritus[edit]

The box is rigged to prevent tampering. I don’t know how it works, but I know that much. Alanik, I’m sorry. I can’t fix it. We need to get off this ship immediately.

—Rig to Alanik[24]

Back outside Detritus, Alanik and Jorgen went aboard a Superiority ship to rescue Gran-Gran, Cobb, Jorgen’s parents, and members of the National Assembly. Alanik discovered a bomb on board, rigged to blow, and fetched Rig from Wandering Leaf. Rig examined the bomb, but didn’t know anything about how to stop it. He used Drape to hyperjump back to Wandering Leaf while Alanik and Jorgen tried to get the others off the ship.[24] They got Gran-Gran and Cobb off, but the others died in the resulting explosion. Afterward, Rig partially blamed himself for their deaths, but Alanik told him it wasn’t his fault.[25] Rig joined Jorgen and the rest of the flight as Jorgen yelled at Vice Admiral Stoff, and went with FM to try and get one of the slugs to find Cobb.[26] When the rest of Skyward Flight left for Evershore, Rig worked on exploring Detritus’ platforms with the Engineering team.[27] FM and Jorgen returned to Detritus during the battle for Evershore, and met with Rig. After being appraised of the situation, Rig went with them to wake up Stoff and give him a report. Stoff gave them almost full autonomy, dumping the responsibility, and therefore possible blame for failure, on them. Jorgen ordered Rig to try and access the platform control center, to try and send some platforms to Evershore to help.[28]

Um, I know I asked you for more slugs, but I really don’t know which boxes to put them in. I have no idea what some of these slugs would do, even if we could figure out where to put them.

—Rig to Jorgen[29]

Some time later, Jorgen hyperjumped to Rig again, saying they needed to transport several platforms to Evershore as soon as possible, since Superiority reinforcements were arriving. Rig showed Jorgen that there were tons of empty taynix boxes in the control room, but that he didn’t know what many of them did, much less have enough slugs to power them all. Jorgen and Fine connected with the taynix beneath Detritus, summoning hundreds of various slugs into the control room, startling Rig. Rig and several of the slugs started getting the new slugs into boxes, though Rig still didn’t really know what he was doing. Jorgen told him to just do his best to figure it out.[29]

When the Superiority forces started targeting various Evershore cities, Rig was forced to hurry up. Jorgen, with the help of Fine, managed to hyperjump the entire planet of Detritus to a point off Evershore. Rig found that the control platform had similar navigation controls to Platform Prime, which could direct the hyperslugs. Detritus’ sudden appearance caused a massive tidal wave to form down below, and he and his engineers scrambled to enter coordinates into the navigation system. He moved Detritus further away from Evershore, while also sending out various platforms down to Evershore to protect the kitsen cities from Superiority ships.[30] After the Superiority retreated and Evershore was saved, Rig worked on optimally placing platforms around the planet to generate the shield.[31]



We grew up together. She’s like my sister. Not that I ever had a sister, but if I had one who was, like, terrifying, that’s how I think it would feel.

—Rodge to FM about Spensa[13]

Rodge and Spensa have been friends since they were about eight, as they were both social outcasts.[32][33] Spensa's enthusiasm often catches Rodge up and he is dragged along on many of her reckless adventures. Rodge is resigned to this, though, and isn't surprised when Spensa turns up late at night hanging upside-down at his window.[34] When someone was trying to steal Rodge's lunch when they were younger, she gave the offender a broken arm and black eye.[35]

When Rodge realizes that flight school is not for him, Spensa is upset, but comes to realize he will be happier elsewhere. Rodge is worried about Spensa when she infiltrates the Superiority and gets trapped in the nowhere, but has confidence that she will make it out.


You will not tell her I said those things. She probably doesn’t even remember who I am....Does she?

—Rodge talking to Spensa after admitting he likes FM[36]

Rodge has a crush on FM and thinks she is smart, cute, and has nice eyes.[36] Spensa, while playing matchmaker, asks FM about her dating preferences to see whether she would be interested in someone like Rodge, although her attempts to find out information do not go very far.[37]

FM thinks Rodge is cute, and wanted to get to know him better. Because of his shyness, though, Rodge felt very awkward around her and she thought he didn't like her, as he never looked her in the eye and rarely spoke to her.[6]

After she confronts him, asking what his problem is, he confesses that he has a crush on her, and apologizes for making her feel that he didn't like her. FM, though she finds Rodge attractive, is worried about getting into a relationship because of the danger of her life as a pilot, knowing that any day, she could fly away and not come back. She tells Rodge she doesn't know if she likes anyone, and he takes it as a gentle letdown.[8]

After this, Rodge is able to talk to FM more and treats her more normally, and makes her heart skip when he smiles at her.[9] When the Superiority prepares to fire on Detrius with planetary weapons, FM and Rodge ride together in the Dulo. When the planetary shield goes up, they, the rest of Skyward flight, and a couple of other pilots are trapped outside until they rendezvous to hyperjump back inside. During the wait, FM tells Rodge that she's more sure about her feelings now, and takes his hand, much to his delight.[13] After the battle, FM is stressed and worrying about the taynix. Rodge talks to her, and helps her feel better. She kisses him after he helps her up.[14] They work together to experiment with the taynix, and Rodge agrees with FM in that the slugs are alive and more than just tools.[15] Rodge is worried when FM leaves on missions, and FM is worried about hurting him if she doesn't come back, but she decides that there's little point in staying alive if one doesn't have much to live for. With this thought, she decides to continue her relationship with Rodge despite the danger of her situation.

FM and Rodge used their taynix to meet quietly, because they weren't ready to tell everyone that they were dating yet.[3] They are close, and FM enjoys helping Rodge with his engineering projects, or at least watching him work.[38][3]



  1. Skyward chapter 9#
  2. Skyward chapter 18#
  3. a b c ReDawn chapter 13#
  4. a b Skyward chapter 36#
  5. Skyward chapter 13#
  6. a b Sunreach chapter 3#
  7. Sunreach chapter 4#
  8. a b Sunreach chapter 7#
  9. a b Sunreach chapter 8#
  10. Sunreach chapter 9#
  11. Sunreach chapter 10#
  12. Sunreach chapter 11#
  13. a b c Sunreach chapter 12#
  14. a b c Sunreach chapter 13#
  15. a b Sunreach chapter 14#
  16. Sunreach chapter 15#
  17. Sunreach epilogue#
  18. a b ReDawn chapter 7#
  19. ReDawn chapter 14#
  20. a b c d ReDawn chapter 15#
  21. ReDawn chapter 17#
  22. ReDawn chapter 18#
  23. ReDawn chapter 21#
  24. a b c ReDawn chapter 23#
  25. ReDawn epilogue#
  26. Evershore chapter 1#
  27. Evershore chapter 2#
  28. Evershore chapter 13#
  29. a b Evershore chapter 15#
  30. Evershore chapter 20#
  31. Evershore epilogue#
  32. Skyward prologue#
  33. Skyward chapter 15#
  34. Skyward chapter 17#
  35. Skyward chapter 24#
  36. a b Skyward chapter 30#
  37. Skyward chapter 38#
  38. ReDawn chapter 16#
  39. Skyward Pre-Release AMA
    Arcanum - 2018-10-19#
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