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 Post subject: Re: TDI Episode 2: Thieves in the Night
PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2014 8:58 pm 
Site Gunslinger
Joined: Wed May 03, 2006 10:50 pm
Posts: 8228
Location: The Dark Side
Guided Missile Frigate Patrocles
Regroup Point
Day 6 0120 Hours

It was quiet in the Patrocles’ CIC, with only the normal sounds of a running ship; the background chirps and hum of electronics and DRADIS, the almost indiscernible whisper of the air handling system, crew voices as they reported status in hushed tones. The atmosphere, however, was charged with suppressed excitement and contained elation. They’d challenged the cylons and won—won a major victory, destroying an enemy baseship and two cylon tankers.

Captain Thompson wasn’t sharing the CIC crew's bottled-up satisfaction. Once she’d determined that their current location was clear of the enemy, her attention had gone back to that enemy—specifically, to the baseship they’d just blown into oblivion. Its vector had been taking it away from the comms relay at sub-light speed. It was far enough from the relay that it could have jumped… why didn’t it? she mused, staring sightlessly at the tactical station’s console.

After a moment she blinked and focused on the console, bringing up the DRADIS data track of the baseship, from when they’d first detected it until they’d engaged it in battle. Maybe it wasn’t going that far, she thought. There’s nothing else nearby. Maybe it was going to meet up with friends…

After a moment of surveying the information on the screen, she turned to Colonel Bisby. He stood near the communications station, listening to the status reports, while he kept a critical eye roving the CIC crew. As his gaze crossed Thompson he stopped, affording her a raised eyebrow.

“Sir,” she said calmly, “I have plotted the baseship’s vector when we encountered it and its support craft. Based on this data, I have extrapolated that the baseship was most likely headed along this vector—,” she paused, projecting her plot on an overhead screen. She turned, her eyes on that screen.

The Colonel took a single step, centering himself before the monitor. "Continue," he said, his tone neutral.

“Given that there were far more enemy Raiders here than necessary to defend a comms relay, it is my conjecture that the baseship may have been intending to rendezvous with other cylon ships,” she continued. “There may be a cylon staging point not far from the relay.”

"Ah," Bisby replied.

“I propose that we send out two recon Raptors each from the Patrocles and the Bellerophon, jumping in on overlapping sensor sweep points, and see if we can find any more of the bastards,” she concluded in a hard voice.

"We're down an engine, Captain Thompson, and we don't know the full extent of the Bellerophon's damage. If you're right, that's a fight for which we're not ready." Bisby made that pronouncement as though he was speaking to an erring child. After a pause he resumed, his words taking a less admonishing tone. "However, identifying a cylon staging area would be a valuable piece of intelligence. Proceed with the Raptor search - fast sweeps, and have them back at Jormung not later than 20 minutes after they launch."


 Post subject: Re: TDI Episode 2: Thieves in the Night
PostPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2014 6:11 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jun 24, 2006 10:51 am
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Location: The Grid
Patrocles Raptor 775
Vectored Search Mission
Day 6 0130 Hours

"Launch plus six minutes, Angel," JRLT Dylan Herlihy announced. "Search point Alpha-four, sending active ping."

This far from the Helios Delta sun, Raptor 775 was a shadowy ghost in the darkness of space. Captain Thompson's search vector placed them along the orbit of Hestia, but the gas giant was tens of thousands of kilometers ahead of them, a mere point of light against a background of distant stars. Their DRADIS pulse flashed outward at the speed of light, a spherical shell of electromagnetic energy - silent, invisible, but not undetectable. Lieutenant Herlihy had to wait only a moment before the pulse was reflected back to the Raptor's instruments.

"Multiple large contacts", he barked as his display resolved the returns. "Range eight thousand four hundred klicks, bearing zero zero five carom two seven. Three bogeys, zero shift, cross sections are consistent with cylon baseships." He turned in his seat, regarding his pilot. "Cap was right, Angel. We got 'em." He waited for her reaction, captivated as a victory smile spread across her face.

"Good job, Dylan," she responded, Herlihy's triumphant expression giving her a rush of warmth. She immediately added, "Let me know the instant it looks like they know we're here so we can bug out. I'll get on the wireless..." She turned to the controls, relaying the message about their discovery.

As Angel notified the other Raptors of the cylon presence, Herlihy focused the Raptor's sensors on the baseships. "I'd say they've already had word of our earlier engagement," he assessed, "Seems they're maintaining EMCON - I'm getting barely a whisper from them. DRADIS shows additional small returns, probably Raiders flying CAP." He leaned back from his console, pulling his headset down onto his neck. Herlihy looked intently at Hawkins. "They have to know we're here, Angel. They'd have picked up our pulse when it hit them, before it reflected back and told us they were here..."

Hawkins met Herlihy's eyes somberly. "The other Raptors are bugging back to Jormung," she said, "but I'd really like to get visible proof for Captain Thompson. If I jump us in for just two seconds and then jump out... will that be enough time for you to snap a picture of those frakkers?" Unwilling to look away, she kept her gaze on him while she waited for his assessment.

For a moment Herlihy was lost, transfixed by the expression on Hawkins' face. Then he broke free, shaking his head instinctively as though to clear it. "Yeah, yeah," he stammered. "I'll just keep the gun camera rolling. We can pull still capture shots from that." He held his pilot's gaze for a second longer, then looked away nervously. Quit talking, Hobo, he thought.

Kacey Hawkins drew in a long breath, feeling inexplicably... jittery. She knew it wasn't because of the close proximity of the cylons, though. Am I feeling this way about him because so many have died? the logical part of her brain asked as she watched Herlihy. She gave her head a slight shake. Who cares? So many have died. Those of us still alive... need to live. "What do you think, Dylan?" she asked lightly, smiling at him. "How about going in on afterburners and jump out at the last second?"

"Aye, sir," he replied, grinning but still looking at his electronic warfare board as he worked. "Jump vector to Jormung loaded. FTL's spooled and standing by." He looked to Angel again. "When you're ready, punch it. Let's play chicken..."

Hawkins pointed the nose of the Raptor directly toward the enemy ships and accelerated, her attention to the controls meticulous in spite of the gleam of daring in her eye. "Say the word when we need to leave, Hobo," she told him.

The Raptor arrowed through space toward the cylon ships, its speed building with every second as Angel firewalled the throttle. Hobo was silent, his attention fixed on his instruments, until they had closed most of the intervening distance.

"Gun camera is now active," he said. Three baseships were discernable in the center of the screen. Out the Raptor's forward window they were little more than greyish blotches, though steadily growing in size.

"Roger," Hawkins murmured automatically.

Seconds passed, and then Herlihy began to speak hurriedly. "Enemy CAP is vectored to intercept. Contact in 20 seconds. Our speed 17,000 KPH; fifty seconds to the baseships. Gun camera image is good." He grasped a handrail on the bulkhead beside him. "Shall we go?"

"Twenty seconds," Hawkins said softly, smiling. Silently, slowly, she counted backwards from ten, then, "Time to go."

Raptor 775 disappeared in a flash of light.

A moment later Jormung Anchorage was visible out the Raptor's canopy, and both officers breathed a sigh of relief. Hobo began playing back the gun camera footage, cueing it up on his EW board with a duplicate feed to the pilot's console. He gave a low whistle as the magnified image of the cylon baseships grew to fill the screen.

"If any other fighting ships survived..." he began, then paused as he bit his lip. "... and they find that relay, they're gonna be walking into a real hornets nest. The toasters lost a cap ship, and they know we spotted the staging point. Unless they abandon the position, they'll be reinforcing it."

"I doubt they'll abandon," Hawkins said softly. She was silent for a few moments and then added, like a prayer, "May the gods watch over any Colonial ships that find it."


End of Episode 2


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