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 Post subject: Re: TDI Episode 3: Know Thine Enemy
PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2016 5:51 pm 
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Civilian research vessel Satyr

"Receiving encoded packet from the Patrocles," Mr Jaeger reported. The comm officer wore a slightly puzzled look, and Cherenko echoed it.

Gabriel Kyros stepped toward the comm console. "Run it through SMECC," he said and Jaeger began tapping uncertainly on his touch screen. "There," Kyros continued as he arrived beside the comm officer. "Standard Military Encryption for Civilian Communications."

"Ah," Jaeger replied as understanding dawned on him. "We have jump coordinates now." At the DRADIS console, another of the Satyr's bridge crew called for attention.

"Captain Cherenko, the Fleet vessels have jumped. All of them."

Cherenko scowled. "That old fossil certainly isn't going to wait on us. Get that jump passed to the helm. Mr Kyros, jump us as soon as it's loaded."

"Aye, sir," Kyros responded, turning toward the helm and the FTL controls.

"Jump coordinates transferred to the helm," Jaeger called out.

"Coordinates loaded, FTL computer verifies valid jump. One hundred thirty two SU," Sterling announced. "One thousand ninety eight light minutes."

"Just jump us," Cherenko fumed. Gabriel Kyros turned the jump key, and the Satyr vanished.


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 Post subject: Re: TDI Episode 3: Know Thine Enemy
PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2016 4:12 pm 
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Jormung Ammunition Reserve
Visiting Troops Quarters
Day 7, 1550 Hours

The Visiting Troops Quarters--VTQ--on Jormung where the mercenaries were billeted were designed to accommodate a full regiment of troops, divided into three sections. Rattler's warriors were housed in one of those three austere sections that hosted the basic functions a battalion would need: a galley and mess hall, bathrooms and showers, and berthing compartments. There was also a large multi-purpose compartment that could be used for formations, physical training, and leisure activities. Many of the Scorpian mercenaries had been practicing fighting skills there--unarmed hand-to-hand combat and knife fighting; or played abremi, a strategy game played with colored stones.

The multi-purpose compartment was also the only one in the battalion section with ports open to view space outside the station. The imminent departure of the small Colonial fleet drew some of the mercenaries to those ports, watching the ships.

"Za shirgi bawa," Sergeant Mihe S'Rimald commented to Corporal Tommy S'Alad, standing next to him. There go the sheep's ships.

Continuing the conversation in Iri’shèè, S'Alad mused, "I wonder if that small civilian ship is going with the rest."

The two watched as the Satyr gracefully undocked from the station. "It looks like it," S'Rimald replied. "Why else would it leave the dock?"

"Her captain probably doesn't like the idea of staying here without the protection of gunships," S'Alad snorted. He looked slowly from left to right, his gaze resting on each ship briefly.

S'Rimald smiled slightly. "The Lieutenant told me that the Satyr's captain is a ghé shayar woman." The term ghé shayar translated to 'water rich', but when it was used colloquially in reference to a woman it meant beautiful and sexy.

Dryly, S'Alad responded, "Ghé shayar can be just as dangerous."

"Or even more dangerous," S'Rimald said in the same tone.

"How does the Lieutenant know?" S'Alad wondered.

S'Rimald gave an expressive shrug. "How does the Lieutenant know any of what he knows?" he asked rhetorically.

"He consults the stars," S'Alad said wryly.

Without speaking, they gazed out at the ships and the stars for a moment, then each of the ships disappeared in the flash of FTL, the Satyr vanishing last, seconds after the rest had gone.

"Hunting cylons," S'Alad stated.

"I wish I was going with," S'Rimald said abruptly.

S'Alad nodded agreement. "It's boring without a worthy enemy." Musingly he added, "I wonder how hard it is to kill a metal warrior?"

"Harder than it is to kill these soft sheep," S'Rimald replied scornfully.

S'Alad nodded again. "Except maybe for their leader... the Captain who was talking to our Major."

"He might be able to fight," S'Rimald concurred.

_________________
Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper, about budget cuts for the US’s intelligence agencies: "We're not going to do more with less and all these other clichés. . . . We will just simply have less capability."


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 Post subject: Re: TDI Episode 3: Know Thine Enemy
PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2016 5:45 pm 
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Civilian Research Vessel Satyr
Intensive Care Unit
Day 7


Robert Rand stepped into the darkened Intensive Care Unit, casting his gaze across the still forms that lay on the three surgical beds. The only sound in the room was the rhythmic hiss of the ventilators. A wedge of light that spilled through the windowed doors from the passageway beyond kept the room from being utterly dark. In the shadows, the power lights and indicator screens of the life support equipment glowed softly.

Rand strode to the midpoint of the room and stood at parade rest. He had stopped at the security office's small armory and obtained a submachine gun - the weapon now hung from its sling across his abdomen. Rand crossed his arms, allowing them to rest across the top of the weapon. He contemplated the comatose cylons, and the wisdom of keeping them alive. He understood Cherenko's reasons for not executing them, but understood equally well the risks they posed should the Satyr's military escorts discover them.

[Attention all personnel - prepare for immediate hyperlight jump.] The announcement and accompanying warning tone sounded from the overhead speakers, interrupting Rand's study of the cylons. Seconds later the effects of jump intruded upon his conscious mind, seeming to speed up and slow down time simultaneously, stretching and compressing the compartment around him. Rand gritted his teeth, knowing it would be over in a moment.

Within his field of vision the cylons sat up, bending at the waist in a fluid motion, their arms remaining slack at their sides. Their eyes seemed to go from closed to open with no intervening motion. Rand shifted his arms to the submachine gun, his action languid in the dilation effect of jump. Leoben grinned at him, a malevolent death's-head smile under the rubber skullcap and its trailing wires. Rand blinked, and Leoben's surgical bed was empty. Instinct made him look aside and he found the cylon standing beside him. His smile gone, Leoben's eyes were focused somewhere distant, beyond the ICU walls.

Then the jump effects ended. Rand let out a sharp breath as his body belatedly turned to the side. There was no one there, in the darkness, and Rand's eyes immediately sought the surgical beds again. The ventilators continued their hissing in unison, while the life sign traces continued uninterrupted across the small screens. All three cylons lay silent, white sheets pulled up neck high with their arms laid atop.

Rand stepped closer, cautiously, and then proceeded to pace deliberately around the surgical beds. He scrutinized each of the cylons closely, but could find no evidence that they had moved. He replayed those few seconds in his mind, and though his experience told him what he had seen could not have actually happened, he could not shake the sense that it had been real.

Robert Rand found himself doubting his perceptions. He had no doubt, however, that he would not be recounting his experience. To anyone.


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 Post subject: Re: TDI Episode 3: Know Thine Enemy
PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2016 10:30 pm 
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Fleet Tanker Distant Sun
Day 7 1601 Hours


"Jump complete," LT Daniel Coulter announced. "Cassiopeia at one-nine-zero carom zero, range one hundred thousand klicks." Coulter focused for a moment on the DRADIS monitor, then reported, "No cylon vessels in the immediate vicinity, sir."

Captain Jason Paul Ames looked out the port side windows of the Distant Sun's small CIC. Cassiopeia was shining in the light of Helios Delta, which lay a hundred million miles to the tanker's starboard. Streaks of lighter grey criss-crossed the moon's ash-colored disk, occasionally connecting in bright dots of near-white. Rifts and craters, Ames knew, but it was hard not to think of them as roads and cities.

Beyond the moon lay the orange orb of the gas giant Hestia. Three other of her moons were visible, two as bright dots to one side and a third as a brilliant but tiny orb transiting the face of the gas giant, its shadow trailing shortly behind. "One point three million klicks to Hestia, Captain," Coulter said, as though he'd read Ames' thoughts. "That's Prota and Dionysus, the first and third moons, to the side. The very bright one is Tana, the second moon. Its name means fire goddess." Ames gave Coulter a look of amused interest, and Coulter explained with a small shrug, "It's all in the navigational database, sir."

"And our target?" Ames prompted.

"Cassiopeia is the seventh moon of Hestia, and the largest. Very thin argon/helium/oxygen atmosphere, not breathable except perhaps below ground. Gravity is 0.92 Colonial standard." Coulter regarded Ames with a raised eyebrow, certain that the tanker captain had already been briefed on their destination.

Ames stepped toward the forward end of the CIC, speaking to Daniel as he did. "Just letting you show off, Exec," he said, a trace of a grin curling the corner of his mouth. "We're in waiting mode right now, until the Colonels recce the mine and the base."

Coulter snorted softly. "I was a bit of a planet trivia buff as a kid, especially the gas giants. I used to know all the named moons of Hera, since Helios Beta is my home system."

Ames nodded, but his attention was on the Patrocles and Bellerophon. The two warships were in formation before him, while the tip of the spear-like Tauranian Titan lay to starboard. The Chiron, and presumably the civilian ship Satyr, were aft of the tanker and out of sight. Ames stood watching, waiting for the small forms of Raptors to appear. Silently he prayed that all would survive this mission.


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