Author Topic: TFWFTM: Game Thread  (Read 23900 times)

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-HNS Phuur-Nan Task Force, Coruc-Tel System-

The drones did nothing. For a while it seemed that they had not noticed or even cared that they were being hailed. Raonaid shot a glance at Ferdi, who shrugged his trademark what-else-did-you-expect shrug.

"Well, let's try something else. Shaked, can you scan them back?"

"Yes, Captain. It wouldn't be any better than the scans we got from the Vaygr, but as a form of reciprocal communication...."

"You catch my drift."

"It is worth a try. Scanning now. This will take some time."

"Boss?" asked the comms officer.

"Yeah?"

"Got a top priority transmission from the Admiral. Instruction is to play it right here, right now."

"Go ahead."

It was a voice-only transmission. "Follow the drones. Do not wait for the science team. After that, your orders are to do anything as you see fit until the next time we meet. Good luck."

Admiral Raltha Naabal was, to many in the fleet, a greater mystery than the three Hyperspace Cores combined. Many who have served under her command would swear up and down that she was capable of precognition. Before she entered the Navy she was just an unknown industrial university graduate. But as soon as she enrolled into the Academy, she proved to be a stunning genius. Too stunning, in fact. There were rumours of her preemptively walking into a disciplinary board meeting and convincing them to call off an investigation on her before it was even considered. Thus it was no surprise she was chosen to be a fleet command operator, and given all the necessary implants to directly connect her mind to a mothership-class vessel. Advancements in implant technology meant that she got to keep her striking white hair. The "Pale White Ghost," as called by her crew in whispers, was going to be the Fleet Command for the Pride of Hiigara, but of course, Karan S'jet insisted on leading the expedition, a fact Raltha herself predicted when she turned down the position. Still, she served as the fleet's second-in-command and was notorious of giving orders that don't make any sense until much later. As time went on, people learned to stop arguing and just go with her very precise instructions. If Karan was Sajuuk incarnate, Raltha would be her sage. An example, which Raonaid would not soon forget, was how the Admiral ordered the Phuur-Nan to move straight towards the "Lighthouse" of the Progenitor hulk before it was even identified as such. Then the Admiral ordered as thick a strikecraft screen to be put in place around three pairs of hulks, before the Movers even showed themselves. Without those instructions, they would probably have lost a lot more than a few strikecraft squadrons to the Movers.

Now I get it. She must have known about these drones when she sent the Phuur-Nan here, Raonaid thought. Now she wants us to follow them... and then do as I see fit? I thought she was going to be more precise.... Unless even she doesn't know.

Ferdi wiped the sweat off his forehead. "She never wished anyone good luck," he said.

"So she doesn't know everything," Raonaid said. "Wait. The drones aren't moving. Where should we follow them to-"

"Well, Boss, they are now," said the sensors officer. "Entering a tight formation, heading away from our probe.... They are entering hyperspace. Tracking now.... They are leaving for the middle of nowhere, Boss. What do we do?"

"We'll do as the Pale White Ghost says."

"Yes, Boss. Let's hope getting us killed isn't part of her plan."

"I reckon if she was sending us to our deaths, she would have said 'thank you' instead."

"Then we should consider ourselves lucky."

You follow the drones to an uninhabited star system, which has been mined even more thoroughly than the previous one. There is a massive concentration of drone ships, although not nearly enough to make up for the system's missing mass. The greatest concentration (including several incredibly massive constructions hundreds of kilometers in diameter) are surrounding an unknown anomaly, which is giving off readings like nothing you have ever seen before. The drones you were following, once they exit hyperspace, proceed at a slow but steady pace towards this anomaly. You note that most of the other drones in the system seem to be moving towards the anomaly, and disappearing within it.
Shivans view most other species the way we view infectious diseases. They think they are doing good by curing the universe of them. After all, no one mourns the fate of smallpox.

The Final War For The Multiverse

 

Offline HLD_Prophecy

  • PVD_Hope in a former life
  • 29
  • A Typhon-class destroyer.
**************************************
Commodore Guderian stood before Admiral Bosch aboard the Iceni.

It had been a full twenty seconds or so since he had been ushered in. The Admiral had glanced up at him briefly, then returned to staring - almost blankly, Guderian surmised - at a sheaf of papers in his hand. Eventually he sighed and, with alarming deftness, spread and shuffled the papers on the table.

"Commodore, tell me... would you trust a rumour?"

"A rumor, Admiral? That would depend upon how well-substantiated it was."

"A rumor. A fantastic rumour that promised destruction and salvation at once. The end times. A rumor so fantastic... so fantastic you feel compelled to believe?"

"Sir, I am afraid I don't understand."

"These, Commodore, are the contents of the encrypted communication you delivered to me." He indicated the papers spread before them. Guderian eyed them briefly, not prepared to read them yet.

"I will say this as succinctly as I may, Commodore. The communication claims to be a warning. A prophecy, if you will. From an inter-dimensional, inter-spatial source of some kind, one that claims to have witnessed the realization of a future possibility: the return of the Shivans. On an even greater scale. And, naturally, the associated end of mankind."

the red ships the dread ships they come and we are lost

Guderian's mind reeled. He recovered and responded with defiance:

"A hoax, sir. An absurd notion, an attempt to mislead. Clearly some GTVI spook cooked this up. A Faustus and three fighters? Traversing time and space? If you would, sir, I suggest that we..." He trailed off, his case sounding weaker in his own mind as he took in Bosch's stony gaze. That the Admiral had the patience to wait on him at all was remarkable, Guderian realized. He fell silent.

"If you're quite done, Commodore... I have some familiarity with the ways of the "spook." I would initially agree. This communication could be a tactic to steal our attention, divide our focus. But think about it further. Please read what I've set before you?"

The Commodore began paging through the papers. An elaborate future possibility unfolded itself. A Shivan invasion, one barely stopped. That belonged to an alternate timeline. The warning was focused on what could happen now. A much larger incursion, on multiple fronts. It would be impossible to plug the gaps, even with the GTVA's latest Meson bomb strategies. The tide would roll on inexorably. The very nature of reality could bend, fracture, to serve the Shivan's purposes. The account was detailed, incredibly detailed. Specific descriptions of the GTVA weaknesses, a brutally clinical explanation of how the Shivans would exploit those weaknesses...

Guderian glanced up. "Elaborate, sir, yes. Incredibly elaborate."

"I know. They seem remarkably aware of their own vulnerabilities, if this should be a GTVI plot. In addition, Commodore, they knew. They knew our most advanced decryption abilities. My private decryption routines. They know an incredible amount about our fleet, about our command structure, about our strengths - such as they are - and about our weaknesses."

"Commodore Guderian, if the GTVA knows so much, knows exactly what they can do to us... why go to the effort of misdirection?"

Guderian looked up, noticing the few papers that Bosch still held under his hand. He gestured toward them, a question in his eyes.

"These are for my eyes only. They detail my role in this matter."

"Your role, Admiral?"

"Presumably... I have the power to stop this. I have resources which I cannot describe to you now. Resources that could stop this apocalypse before it begins. To that end, I am going to disappear. I will take the Iceni with its crew, some close advisors, and follow this rumor to the bitter end. If it should turn out to be a myth - and at this point, I am beginning to doubt that - we can always..."

The Commodore lost control and interrupted: "Sir? You are abandoning the people of Neo-Terra? RIGHT when we need you most?!? Your people are counting on you to keep your promises, Admiral! Do you have the luxury of chasing after a -"

Bosch's hand came down like thunder on the desk. Guderian flinched, yet the roaring tirade he anticipated did not emerge. When Bosch spoke, after a pause, it was with an implacable whisper. As with a promordial glacier, argument would have been worse than futile. Only one word was raised above that whisper, and it cut like a blade of tempered steel.

"Do not DARE to presume that I feel anything but bitterness at having to leave my people behind. I take no pleasure in appearing to break my promise. I raised the Neo-Terran Front to give those who were willing to fight... to give them a better life. Soldiers, students - such as yourself - laborers, scholars, business owners, merchants, dock workers, politicians, ruled, rulers. I invited them all to partake of the abundance that could be ours - could be ours if we stood, fought, showed strength tempered with mercy, might tempered with justice. This situation changes nothing, Commodore. I can put this threat down before it rears its ugly head. If it should be a rumor, you will have to do temporarily without me and without the services of my command vessel. But if it is true? I could save us all. That is honoring my promise."

"You will not deny this."

Guderian stood straighter. He would not deny his leader. "What are your orders, sir?"

The Admiral sat back, rubbing his hands together momentarily as he stared at the desk.

"I am leaving Rear Admiral Koth in charge during my absence. I want that affairs continue unchanged while I am gone. It is to be as if I was present, do you understand?"

"Yes, sir. Rear Admiral Koth."

The disbelief in his voice was evident. Bosch raised an eyebrow. He had anticipated this.

"Koth is a fanatic, I know. But he is aggressive. Uncompromising. Driven. He will not waver from a set course, the course of Neo-Terra. I can trust that in my hopefully temporary absence, he will not bow to the GTVA. You understand."

Guderian did not. But that was of no consequence.

"Sir, let the 5th come with you. Three cruisers and the power of your battle corvette? That would form a tough defensive formation. We could fight our way out of any number of situations, should things turn sour."

"I felt that you would ask this of me, Commodore. Know... know that I appreciate your loyalty. And it is that very appreciation that compels me to ask you to stay."

"I need a representative to remain. Someone who knows what has been done, why we are fighting, the warning that has been given. Should the time come to reveal this affair to the GTVA..."

Guderian started. Clearly, Bosch was getting desperate.

"...should that time come, I can trust you to relay only the information they need. For the same reason, I am not describing to you the specifics of what I must do to stop this invasion. The less you know about that, the better - we both know how they would react to a plot of mine. They would doubtlessly interfere in their clumsy fashion, and destroy the endeavour. They would be very satisfied with themselves for doing so, I don't doubt."

A tight smile reached Bosch's face. Just for a moment. It disappeared as fast as it had come. "I am am gifting you with this command directive. It is a private code of mine. Koth is very familiar with it. It gives you the right, on a case by case basis, to countermand Koth's orders. It is imperative that you do not use this directive except in a case of most dire necessity. You understand. It is required that we maintain Koth as a legitimate authority figure. You can imagine the effect on the command structure, were a Commodore of a rear-line squadron to make a habit of correcting Koth."

Guderian took the folder. "Thank you, sir. I promise you, I will only use this in extreme necessity. Is that all, sir?"

The Admiral was quiet for a moment. He then pushed one of the papers, formerly in his grasp, over towards Guderian. His hand covered most of the sheet, but one sentence was visible.

Trust only the trustworthy.

Guderian frowned at the rather obvious and empty sentence. The Admiral spoke before he could.

"Commodore, always remember this: I chose you for this task. Circumstances will test that trust. Circumstances will test you. Be not afraid. Do not waver. That is... all. I cannot guarantee that we will meet again, not for a long time. You are dismissed."

Guderian saluted - his sharpest, most attentive, respectful salute. He turned briskly on his heel and marched from the room, hoping that the moistness in his eyes had not been noticed. As he moved to close the door behind him, he heard a quiet call from the room behind him.

"Commodore?"

"Yes, sir?"

"Thank you."

"I... thank you in return, Admiral."



And that was, as had been said, all.

 
- Independent Cruiser Nightfly, Delta Serpentis -

It took quiet some time to transmit and decode the last message from the unknown battlegroup. Sally looked over from her monitors. "60 seconds until we're back online. What's the plan? Looks like you really confused these guys out there..."

Fisher stood up from his seat. What should he do? Hitting the afterburners? Answering per morse code again? This whole situation became more and more ridiculous.

"What about the sensors?"

"They're back in business. I'm scanning the entire battlegroup and the strange anomaly behind us... It looks like these guys were headed towards this thing... Maybe it's some kind of entrypoint to hyperspace, but it's not a gate like we know from human or maybe Centauri or Narn space..."

"Alright, that's enough... I'm tired of guessing about what has happened or might happen next. These guys seem to understand our language, so it's time they give us some answers." And what the hell is a docking point? , he added in his mind. "Try to hail their flagship once you're ready. I'd like to talk directly with them. Everyone else, stay sharp. Let's hope I can talk us through to this."

He again took place in his seat. His heartbeat accelerated a bit.

"Sally, hail them with the additional visual channel. I want to see these guys."

A few seconds later, the last stations aboard the Nightfly came back online. The monitors flickered, the sound of the energy core and the lower decks came back to a steady background noise.

Alright, the lady has woken up again. Now show me what you can do...

"Sending sound and visuals in 3,2,1.... GO"

Fisher tried to look confident. He cleared his throat.

"Unknown ships, this is the independent cruiser Nightfly. I am captain John Fisher. We are humans from Earth and Mars. We don't know a United Earth Federation, we're freelancers and the Sol system and adjacent systems we know of, like the Proxima System, are under control of the Earth Alliance. After malfunctions in our sensors during our travel via hyperspace, I ordered an emergency exit jump that brought us to this system. We do not express a threat to you or your mission, whatever that might be. Stop your intended boarding maneuver and do not force us to defend ourselfes. We mean no harm to you. We're asking for permission to leave the sphere of influence of this anomaly behind as we're getting strange readings from it. Let us come closer and we're sure that we can figure this out."

Fisher pushed the next buttons. He lightened another cigarette, then he waited a few seconds. As the nicotine rushed through his bloodstream, he exhaled the smoke. "Sally, send this on a loop until we get an answer, then patch them through directly. I'd like to talk vis-à-vis."
« Last Edit: November 20, 2018, 04:20:51 pm by bomb3rman »

 

Offline crizza

  • 210
19th Battlegroup, Delta Serpentis

Time seemed to stretch as they waited on an answer.
What he got first, was a shout out from the sensors station.
“Admiral, if the readings are to be trusted, energy yield of the unknown ship is rising!”

Clicking several buttons, the transport he had sent turned around and headed back. At least the pilot had gotten some flight time.
One look at the disposition of ships showed everything being exactly where he wanted it to be. At long last Dragon Slayer squadron had exited the hangar bay of the Phoenicia, twelve Gorgon fortress bomber crafts, which positioned themselves close to their motherships bow.
“Sir, we are being hailed, visual feed.”

This better be good, Christopher thought. For now, he simply looked at the screen, taking in the measure of whom he had till now only communicated via Morse code. While he could see his counterpart, the Phoenicia’s comm systems were only set to receive.

"Unknown ships, this is the independent cruiser Nightfly. I am captain John Fisher. We are humans from Earth and Mars. We don't know a United Earth Federation, we're freelancers and the Sol system and adjacent systems we know of, like the Proxima System, are under control of the Earth Alliance. After malfunctions in our sensors during our travel via hyperspace, I ordered an emergency exit jump that brought us to this system. We do not express a threat to you or your mission, whatever that might be. Stop your intended boarding maneuver and do not force us to defend ourselfes. We mean no harm to you. We're asking for permission to leave the sphere of influence of this anomaly behind as we're getting strange readings from it. Let us come closer and we're sure that we can figure this out."

Hitting another button, the ventilation system came online, sucking away the smoke of the last minutes. If he chooses to answer, he wanted to be seen.
Slowly he rose from his chair and smoothed his uniform. Not his dress uniform, but the sign of the GTVA and his rank badges showing his rank where the only visible features on the otherwise blank black uniform. He wasn’t even wearing a cap.
Arvida came to stand next to him, equally dressed, while Ramses stood on the other side, in his long light brown robe. Complemented by Sethak, in his heavy power armour, planting the Khopesh-spear firmly on the ground, who looked rather menacing with his high crested helm in place. Breathing in and out slowly, he nodded to Lt. Wilson to open a feed.

“Well met, Captain Fischer. I am Admiral Christopher Schulz, commanding Officer of the 19th Battlegroup, of the Galactic Terran Vasudan Alliance. As you claim not to be familiar with the United Earth Federation, we haven’t heard of an Earth Alliance, nor of the Proxima system.
We had a bad start, but since your Cruiser is armed, I take it you are familiar with war and what it portends. An unknown ship appearing out of nowhere, ending up in a fleet on its way to war, yet unable to make the subspace jump.”

He looked away for a moment, noting the Satis returning into the protective umbrella of the fleet formation.

“Said boarding manoeuvre in fact contained my Chief Engineer, who was quite excited to get a closer look at your ship. That sphere of influence as you call it is a jump gate, the only into the Sol system, but…”

He turned his head a fraction to look at his wife, who nodded with a warm smile. Her intuition was better than his and who was he, to not trust a woman’s intuition.

“Very well, you may leave your position, but note that we are on a war footing, I would rather not have your ship make any unexpected things and seen it speared by main beam cannons. Bring your ship alongside the Phoenicia, it is hard to miss.”

Nodding towards the cluster of monitors where the Weapons control station was, he signalled with crisp sign of his hand to cancel the weapons lock of the Battlegroup. Not that it was hard to get it again, but the heavy turrets swung back into neutral positions. For now, his curiosity had gained the upper hand: If what he suspected was true, then this was a rather interesting development.
Check out my blog:

http://geo.schulzbert.de/

 
-HNS Phuur-Nan Task Force, Unknown System-

Plunging headfirst into the unknown has been part of the job description of the Hiigaran Navy since the day the Mothership made the fateful voyage from Kharak. For the veterans of the Pride of Hiigara mission, who have seen the likes of Karos and Balcora, the decision to follow a few unknown ships into an unknown part of space was almost sensible. On the other hand, very little could prepare the trainee strikecraft and frigate crews for what was waiting for them on the other side, as the carrier cleared the quantum wavefront.

They will learn, Ferdi thought. If they lived.

The carrier emerged in an empty system, though the routine scan showed that it had definitely not been the case. This system had even less mass than Coruc-Tel, but the size of the star and Oort Cloud suggested that the system should have had a lot more matter. The pilot cadets realised this sooner than the command section, as they launched into space the first thing they saw was a planet, or a small moon, that must have been neatly cut into eight pieces, but right now, only three were left. The comms filled with chatter as their squadron leaders tried fruitlessly to hush them down.

"Report," Raonaid said.

"There are even more drones here than what the Vaygr had met," Shaked said, eyes fixed to the sensors feed. "They are converging at one single point deeper into the system, here. The drones are converging around a collection of five large, mostly spherical structures. Each of these structures is more than five hundred kilometres in diameter. These structures, in turn, have been placed around a signal source...."

Suddenly, Shaked threw off her headset and clutched her ears. The high-pitched white noise was so loud that Raonaid and Ferdi could hear it despite being metres away. Normally the headsets were made with protection against such signal surges, but the smell of burnt plastic suggested that this countermeasure had failed.

"Shaked, you all right?" Raonaid rushed over to her side and found her left ear bleeding. "Medical team to the CIC, stat!"

"I am sorry for my lack of precaution, Captain."

"It's all right."

Meanwhile Ferdi had already taken over the sensors station and continued the analysis. Even though he was always the odd one out, these months of combat had built a semblance of trust among the command staff. Some things need not be ordered, it was just done. Most of the time, of course, everyone just did their thing and forgot other people existed, but that was what you'd get with a training carrier and its constant crew transferals.

"There is a massive anomaly in the middle of those structures..." he said, replacing the burned out headset with a ready spare but not putting it on. "You remember Balcora? This thing is even crazier. The numbers I have are bouncing up and down and all over. One moment this thing has an infinite mass but the next it says it has zero mass. Sames goes for refractive index, opacity, EM emissions, well, everything. The drones are all moving closer to the anomaly. Once they reach it, they are gone."

"Some kind of gate, I guess?" Raonaid asked as the medical technicians rushed into the CIC and began tending to Shaked's wounds.

"Yes, I suppose. Now, Captain, even though the Admiral gave you a blank cheque, I have to recommend against sailing our ship straight through it."

"Our orders are to follow the drones, we don't have much autonomy here."

"At least we should send a probe through first. Who knows what it would do to our ship if we went through it unprepared. Also, there's no telling if the Drones would appreciate us barging in like that. It'd be best to send in something expendable first."

"Well, that'll do," Raonaid picked up the intercom to the factory deck. "Get us three standard probes, out."
« Last Edit: November 19, 2018, 06:53:01 pm by Autohummer »

 
BTW, from now on, if anyone needs any further input/continuations to their story arc, feel free to just PM me.
Shivans view most other species the way we view infectious diseases. They think they are doing good by curing the universe of them. After all, no one mourns the fate of smallpox.

The Final War For The Multiverse

 
- Independent Cruiser Nightfly, Delta Serpentis -

"Alright, people, we've got clearance to move forward. Franky, bring us alongside their flagship. And keep it slow." His heartbeat decelerated. Maybe these people weren't so hotheaded after all. "Marcus, I want steady reports of the progress you're making. Let me know when we're ready to jump again."

He took place in his seat again. This admiral seemed reasonable, at least for now. Sally came towards him, showing some results of ongoing scans on a small tablet. "I've tried to scan the sector, but I can't get my head around this strange 'node' these ships were heading to. This guy said something about not being able to make a subspace jump. I think I know why. This thing is dead."

"What do you mean by 'dead'?"

"Some fading neutrinos showed that this was a connection to some kind of space for faster interstellar travel, not that different from our own entry points. But somehow, this connection seems to have collapsed a few hours ago. I... I just don't think that it's a coincidence that we got thrown out here after exiting hyperspace....", she added.

That would make sense. As the sensors failed to work, he just opened an exit vector via a brute force method. Usually, automatic calculations would stabalize the exit points to make a return to normal space less rough, for ships and space alike. But he just kicked in the door by jumping straight ahead... and then fell into the hole on the floor right behind it.

"Could we be the reason that their node is sealed?"

"Highly unlikely. We might be able to create a temporary disturbance, but not for more than a few minutes. The ship is just not big enough to create an enduring lockdown. But whatever happened here, it might have sucked us into this ... place... universe... whatever." Sally threw up her arms.

"Ok, I get it... We might need to talk to these guys to get more information about where we are... And how we can go back to our own place. I'm calling them again." Fisher's fingers flew over the console and monitors. The strange mimbari knobs and buttons changed their colours from light green to dark blue as he continued. The weak vibrations that started made him calmer.

"Admiral Schulz, this is Captain Fisher again. If you're still interested in learing something about my ship, you are allowed to send over a team of three people, if you wish. I'm sure there's a lot to discuss. We just found out that your 'jump gate' might be out of order for a long period of time. Though we doubt to be the reason for this phenomenon, our presence in this sector could be more than just a coincidence. We assure you that there will come no harm to your people. We might be able to help each other here. My comm officer will send you the data package that allows a save docking maneuver. Fisher out."
« Last Edit: November 20, 2018, 04:20:18 pm by bomb3rman »

 

Offline HLD_Prophecy

  • PVD_Hope in a former life
  • 29
  • A Typhon-class destroyer.
**********************************
In absence of further orders, the 5th Cruiser Squadron returned to their assigned post at Cascade Station. This state of affairs was not to last long, however - no sooner were supplies replenished than Commodore Guderian received a summons from Rear Admiral Koth.

Guderian accessed the video feed.

"Commodore! There is no sense in wasting words. I need you and the 5th to join me on the front lines in Epsilon Pegasi!"

"Rear Admiral, we are a rear-line garrison defense unit - "

"No arguments, Commodore, I need YOU! Quibbling with your superiors will not serve Neo-Terra! Before his departure Admiral Bosch assured me that you lead a unit that I can trust! Reinforcements are needed and your cruisers will serve. Bring your transports as well! Upon reaching the system you are to form up with the Repulse as a temporary addition to my battlegroup. Koth OUT!"

Guderian swallowed his half-formed objections. Straightening his cap, he called for mobilization. Again.

And took another sip from the mug of black coffee that had been on his desk for hours. Again.

 

Offline HLD_Prophecy

  • PVD_Hope in a former life
  • 29
  • A Typhon-class destroyer.
***********************************
Guderian reported immediately to Rear Admiral Koth upon the 5th's arrival in Epsilon Pegasi. He was not entirely unexpected.

"COMMODORE Guderian, I was within seconds of contacting you myself! We have just recieved word that the Majestic and the Refute are under attack elsewhere in the system! They will be utterly destroyed unless we intervene! The Repulse is moving into position, we are less than sixty seconds away from jump-readiness! You are to follow AS SOON AS POSSIBLE, for NEO-TERRA!"

"A moment, Rear Admiral?"

"A brief moment, Commodore!"

"What are we up against? What is attacking our cruisers?"

Koth had the grace to look slightly chastened at his haste. "Thank you for asking. A Leviathan-class cruiser, the GTC Rampart, is after our cruisers, with a wing of Medusa Bombers to back her up. I trust you understand the situation now?"

Guderian certainly understood. At a distance a Leviathan could easily outlast the damage output from two light slashing beams, while its more accurate beam cannon would dish out more damage in return. Add a wing of medium bombers into the mix...

"Rear Admiral, why have our cruisers not simply retreated from this disadvantageous encounter?"

Koth was actually taken aback. It took him near on three seconds to compose an answer - an answer delivered with his typical fiery bluster.

"If I did not take your loyalty SERIOUSLY, Commodore GUDERIAN, I would have labeled that as SEDITIOUS and COWARDLY talk! There is no question of retreat, we fight these GTVA dogs WHEREVER and HOWEVER we can! Our cruisers are certain to be lost, it is true, but that is only if WE do not step in! We will demonstrate our RESOLVE, our MIGHT! Rumour has it that even that DOG, that B*ST*RD of a pilot, that Alpha 1 of those CONFOUNDED Suicide Kings is there. His death will make a fine trophy! We will..."

Koth was briefly interrupted as his staff officer reported jump-readiness.

"AHEM! Commodore, you WILL join us! Koth ou-"

"Rear Admiral, SIR! The Colossus is in the system they are practically BEGGING us to throw away our most potent asset you cannot risk the Repulse like this you must listen - "

Guderian had been yelling at an empty screen for the past two seconds. His protests died away as he realized the futility of arguing with a Rear Admiral capable of such limitless...

...bravery.







« Last Edit: November 25, 2018, 09:01:52 pm by HLD_Prophecy »

 

Offline crizza

  • 210
19th Battlegroup, Delta Serpentis

They waited. Christopher, for want of any other things to do tried to hail Steele via subspace communications but failed to get a connection. Likewise, communications with Delta Serpentis HQ were possible, but they were taking their time. A kingdom for a Faustus or one of the newer Schrodinger class science vessel. Sure, they had on board labs, but they were rather blunt compared to a dedicated science ship.
His command echelon dispersed around him and it didn’t take long for Chufu to return to the bridge. The elderly Vasudan looked rather unpleasant, which on itself spoke volumes about his discontent. Vasudan facial expressions were most of the time barely noticeable. You could insult the whole bloodline of a Vasudan and while it would look like the Vasudan didn’t give a damn about it, you would end up on the floor, with your breast caved in by a punch.

“Incoming, putting it through.”
Looking back at the screen, Captain Fisher appeared again.

"Admiral Schulz, this is Captain Fisher again. If you're still interested in learning something about my ship, you are allowed to send over a team of three people, if you wish. I'm sure there's a lot to discuss. We just found out that your 'jump gate' might be out of order for a long period of time. Though we doubt to be the reason for this phenomenon, our presence in this sector could be more than just a coincidence. We assure you that there will come no harm to your people. We might be able to help each other here. My comm officer will send you the data package that allows a save docking manoeuvre. Fisher out."
As the screen faded to black, voices exploded. The implications were severe. With the portal down, reinforcing terran forces in the Sol system was out of the question. Without supplies Admiral Steele’s forces would starve the way the UEF was starving right now.
In the meantime they had to decide who would go to meet the crew of the Nightfly.
“Guess I’ll go…” Christopher said after listening to the debate for some time. As expected, Arvida rounded on him immediately.

“The hell you will. You’re in charge of this merry gathering of ships. You have an executive officer for such things…” Realizing what she had just said, Arvida became silent and carefully looked towards Ramses.
“I would be honoured to visit this strange ship…” This time, it was Christopher who spoke out, his irritation audible.
“Not gonna happen Ramses. I didn’t save your bony ass all these years ago, only for you to risk it!”
Having been silent, Chufu was starting to say something, but he was cut short by Ramses.
“With all due respect Admiral. I don’t understand what my… asinus has to do with it. I am the only logical choice to go over, since I have written my habilitation treatise about subspace theory.”

The Admiral groaned. Crown prince he maybe, but he often forgot just how smart Ramses was. But if he would send him, he would have to send Ramses life warden as well. Vasudan Naval Guards were one thing. Clad in state of the art power armour and weaponry designed to shred anything not being a main battle tank, the Royal Guard was of another calibre all together. And if they weren’t the meanest killing machines the Vasudans had to offer, no, this fell into the mandate of the life wardens, whose sole purpose was to protect the members of the imperial bloodline against any and all threat.
Carefully he looked at the duo stationed at the bulkhead leading to and from the bridge.
He had once joked that they could wield a maxim cannon and had promptly being shown, just what kind of equipment they used. Rubbing his hand over his face, he sighed.

“Well, Ramses goes, with him one of his wardens. And since I’ll be skinned alive if something goes wrong, I can go as well. Furnish a copy of Nabirasuls node map and have a bottle of Capellan Whisky made ready.”
Inwardly he screamed. The Whisky was worth a fortune, for obvious reasons. The node map, hand painted by the Emperors closest advisor was a masterpiece and even copies of it sold for outrageous amounts of money.

“Get your but in gear… your highness. Arvida my love… you have the bridge. Lieutenant Wilson, inform them three people are inbound aboard an escape pod… no… call it a shuttle. And somehow tell them, that I’ll have a VIP and his trusted guard in tow. And if you’re at it, we’ll come encased in power armour. Ah, the joy of being host to Vasudan royalty…”
Sometime later, the small shuttle docked with the Nightfly.
The Admiral, encased in custom built armour, eased himself out of the pilots’ seat and took up the small casket containing the artwork and the bottle of booze. Doing his best to ignore the one-man army behind him, armed with a rotary cannon which would surely fire Balor rounds and an energised Khopesh spear and longsword at his belt, he waited for the door to open.
While the life wardens armour was built to look aggressive, his own armour was elegant, designed to protect him against weapons fire, while allowing him to move unhindered by its weight. Ramses suit definitely screamed royalty and the Admiral guessed, with all that gold and mother-of-pearl decorations, the light brown suit of armour would be enough to buy a Diomedes corvette.

“Let’s get this over with, and warden, even if they shoot…”
The voice of the life warden was low and menacing and it set him on edge as always. He’d never seen that one’s face at all.

“If they threaten the crown prince, I will cut them down!”
Looking to Ramses calmed Christopher: The crown prince had elected to carry his high crested helmet in the crook of his arm, the purple cloak draped beneath it. Yet his other hand rested on the pommel of his own sword.  Belatedly Christopher realized, that he was the only one without a weapon. Smiling to himself, he waited.
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Shivan Progress Report

A Shivan Alliance Scout Fleet has recently been deployed to Autohummer's (Homeworld) universe. It has so far had no direct contact with the native lifeforms.

A Shivan Alliance Scout Fleet has been deployed to Lorric's (WoD) universe. It has so far only engaged in minor skirmishes with the native lifeforms.

The Native Shivans of bomb3rman and crizza's present universe (Blue Planet Universe) have been contacted.

The Native Shivans of HLD_Prophecy's universe remain uncontacted.

The Native Shivans of Novachen's universe remain uncontacted.

The Mahasu Coalition has not yet been integrated.

The Vishnans have yet to fully grasp the situation, and remain uncoordinated.

The TRISHULA has yet to be deployed.

Chances of defeating the Shivan Alliance at this juncture: Reasonable.


Shivans view most other species the way we view infectious diseases. They think they are doing good by curing the universe of them. After all, no one mourns the fate of smallpox.

The Final War For The Multiverse

 
- Independent Cruiser Nightfly, Delta Serpentis -

As the small shuttle had docked, Fisher waited in the hangar for his guests to leave their ship. He hadn't brought a gun, though, Havoc, his security chief and former narn special forces member, had insisted that he should. Na'Far, as he was really called, stood right next to him with his ever same, sullen expression on his face.

Sally called over the internal comm channel. "They said they'd send a VIP and his guard... And that the admiral himself would come. So don't do anything stupid, alright?"

"A VIP, Ugh!", Havoc said, "I've seen enough precious 'VIPs' during my time on my occupied homeworld. Fancy guys running around in even fanciers suits, looking down on all those who preserve their special state. I'd like to deal with more military guys... At least they know hard work."

Fisher smiled. He had known the Narn for eight years now. Sometimes he just forgot that Na'Far had had a life before he joined Fisher's crew. "Go easy on them... Maybe they're different in this place."

"Maybe, but if they make a stupid move they'll regret it. I've got two poisoned narn knives with me. These blades will find a way through every armor they might carry."

And with these final words, the small door on the shuttle opened. The first person that left it was a human, though he didn't wear a uniform as Fisher expected. The other two were much taller than him. He had never seen people like these. What kind of aliens were they? One had a purple cloak rapped around him, while they were all wearing strong looking armour and a lot of additional weaponry. The purple cloak meant something, so Fisher guessed that this guy (was it a guy?) had to be some royal. He stepped forward, putting out his hand.

"Welcome aboard the Nightfly. I'm guessing you're Admiral Schulz? I am Captain John Fisher, independent cruiser captain and one of the reasons your day might have been a little different that the days before. This is Na'Far, though everyone calls him Havoc. He's my security officer and wil make sure that your stay aboard the Nightfly will be as comfortable as possible. And I'm guessing these two are... part of your Navy, I guess? But let's not stay here in this hangar, we have a conference room made ready the moment as we speak. Let me bring you there. There's a lot to discuss." 

Well, Havoc, I think it will be hard to find a way through this armor..., he thought for himself as he led the group through a floor and into the conference room, where Marcus was already waiting for them.
« Last Edit: November 30, 2018, 07:16:56 am by bomb3rman »

 

Offline crizza

  • 210
As the door slid open, the Admiral smiled. Captain Fisher was definitely human. This Na’Far however looked distinctively non terran. His skin pattern was certainly interesting.
Shaking the proffered hand, he kept up his smile.

“Captain Fisher, it is nice to meet you. The one in the purple cloak is crown prince Ramses of the Vasudan Empire. The other is his highness life warden, pledged to protect him wherever he goes.”
Not too bad a first contact Christopher thought, as he followed Fisher. After arriving in the conference, he placed the casket on the table, opening it. Taking out the bottle and after unwrapping the node map, he looked to the persons present.

“I am honoured to make first contact with what I assume are fellow space travellers from a… well, I guess a parallel universe. This bottle here contains Capellan Whisky, a dying brand, from a lost system. Plus, I have a map of GTVA systems, hand drawn by one of the most important advisors of the Vasudan Emperor.”

Flattening the map to the table, he marvelled at the detail. Each system was drawn in detail, with planets, asteroid belts etc in their native colour, framed by a green circle, which represented a subspace jump node.

“Crown Prince Ramses is a specialist in subspace theory, which is the way we travel faster than light. Excuse our martial appearance, but as I told you, we are on a war footing.”
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Offline HLD_Prophecy

  • PVD_Hope in a former life
  • 29
  • A Typhon-class destroyer.
********************************
"BATTLE STATIONS! ALL HANDS BRACE FOR JUMP IN 5..."

Guderian called out the orders as the cruisers began accelerating.

"...1!"

The jump, being an intra-system jump as it was, happened to be quite brief. Guderian had a moment to straighten his service cap and retrieve the final swig of water from a half-empty cup next to him.

The 5th emerged from subspace - into a nightmare. The figure of the GTVA Colossus loomed large before them, with the Repulse appearing tiny by comparison. The Majestic was barely holding on under heavy bomber attack, while the Refute was nowhere to be seen.

Klaxons fired off across the St. Lo. Guderian grabbed for the comms chip. "All ships, I WANT FIRING SOLUTIONS ON THE COLOSSUS and prep for CRASH JUMP ASAP! Form around and behind the Repulse! D**n, D**N, stand by! Auxiliaries fall back, fall back as far as you can and prep for crash jump on my mark!"

The Commodore tuned to the Repulse's frequency. "Rear Admiral, SIR! Awaiting orders sir I respectfully suggest we FALL BACK this is an UNTENABLE position - "

On all channels came the commanding voice of the Colossus. "This is the GTVA COLOSSUS. Admiral Koth, you are ordered to power down your vessel IMMEDIATELY and SURRENDER. The Polaris jump node is blockaded. There is no escape!"

Koth spoke above the roar of Repulse as it charged and fired, charged and fired. He glanced from Guderian's image to the GTVA officer.

His control wavered. His tone rose:

"I have NO intention of escaping, Colossus, NOR will I surrender!!! Even if I send my crew to HELL with you, this MONSTROSITY will be destroyed!!!" 

The Repulse boosted, head on, to its doom. Guderian's voice melded as one with the admonition of the Colossus:

"D O N T BE A B S U R D KOTH Y O U ARE S A C R I F I C I N G TEN T H O U S A N D LIVES - "

The destroyer met the juggernaught head on. There was no explosion, no spread of debris, no cries of pain.

They simply  -

And the entire 5th Cruiser squadron was forcibly jumped, with no warning, into subspace. Guderian had time for a lone protest, inexplicably mild, almost a whisper...

well, nuts.

And they were gone.
*****************************************


  

Offline HLD_Prophecy

  • PVD_Hope in a former life
  • 29
  • A Typhon-class destroyer.
***********************************
commodore guderian awoke to a nebulous void

a nebulous void while the black sapphire ships ghosted by
***********************************
Guderian awoke with his head on the desk. It was ringing.

My head, not the desk. I think I slammed my head forward when we came out of-

-when they came out of subspace, alarms sounded across the vessel. Guderian lifted his head to see similar scenes of recovery around his bridge. Crewmembers were getting up off the deck, rubbing sore limbs and attempting to regain control at their stations.

"Damage assessment!"

"Uh, structural stress sir, she's creaking a bit but no breaks. Equipment's been scrambled but still functioning - uh, sorry sir, chronometers are on the fritz!"

"Where are we?

"Sir, telemetrics indicate we've arrived in Delta Serpentis..."

The staff officer trailed up as he looked up. He was not alone. Everyone on the bridge had by now noticed what lay before them.

An entire GTVA Battlegroup. And then some. One officer whistled softly.

"Well dayum..."

Guderian whirled around. "All squadron vessels, REPORT!"

"This is the Fort Grace, regaining our balance sir but we'll be okay!"

"This is the Ark, Commodore."

"Sunder Marcel, stable."

"Ransom Arceihn, checked out and ready for battle!"

"Sir we have two Hecates-"

"-looks like beefier weapons-"

"-numerous Deimos-"

"-some of those ships don't match anything in the-"

"We're deep in GTVA space, sir, there could be anything!"






"Half a MINUTE!" The bridge became quieter than the void outside.

We can run, but the drives-

"How are the drives?"

"Uh- drives took a beating sir. Looks like they were never activated - just, uh, used, sir?.... The other vessels indicate much the same, sir! Give us maybe two minutes and we can throw together enough resources for a tenuous crash jump plotting! One jump is all we can make at that rate, sir, one jump to get us out of here, but then we're toast without further repairs!"

We can run in a few minutes. We can't fight this many. Can we-

"Fire control, get prepped for combat! Comms, pass the same order to the other vessels! 'Techs-"

Guderian turned to a pair of younger staff officers. Remarkably bright if a bit skittish, both were graduates of a prestigious communications college on Polaris. Guderian referred to them as his "'Crypt' Techs" as they handled all encrypt/decrypt tasks - and subsequently could perform limited deception tactics under the right circumstances.

"Sergeants, I need those false codes!"

These were a set of ship ID's looted from a set of private sector vessels destroyed or commandeered during the fall of the now-NTF systems. The 5th had been issued with these codes - two Fenris, one Leviathan - in the hopes of spoofing GTVA action for a bit or even outright fooling civilians.

Guderian grabbed the comms chip and broadcast on all frequencies...

"Terran warships, this is the civilian cruiser Well Done. The vessels with me are the cruisers Redfish and Barker, we are the assigned escort for the merchantmen uh Dove and Simona. We have encountered an INEXPLICABLE and DANGEROUS subspace anomaly, warping us several systems in the space of... forgive me, our chronometers are nonfunctional due to the forced jump. Please inform local Command! We are attempting repairs as we speak..."

Strange. The battlegroup... what are those corvettes??? Some experimental design? They're not in formation, either... they're all gathered 'round that one there-






 
-HNS Phuur-Nan Task Force, Unknown System-

In a minute, all three probes emerged from the hangar bay and put themselves in holding pattern next to the carrier.

"Launch the first probe through the anomaly, now," Raonaid said.

"Probe 1 away, boss," said the ATC officer.

Everyone watched the sensors manager as the probe flew fast into the anomaly, the Drone ships responded by pulling in alongside, taking the same high-powered scan as before, then silently continuing on their journey, as if their curiosity had been satisfied. The probe entered the anomaly and disappeared.

"Where did it go?" Raonaid asked.

"We lost all telemetry the moment it passed through the anomaly. No debris," Ferdi said.

"Send another one, this time, program it to do a scan on the other side, then return and send us the results."

"Got it, Probe 2 programmed and on its way," said the ATC officer.

After being scanned again by a passing-by Drone, the second probe disappeared into the anomaly just like the first one. Five minutes later, as was programmed, it emerged back and immediately sent everything it had gathered via tight beam link.

"What have we got?" Raonaid asked.

"Boss, the stars on the other side are nothing like what we have here," said the navigator, tapping away at his starcharts. "I simply don't know where the other side is. The only thing I can say for sure is it isn't anywhere in our galaxy."

"Well, given the turn of events up to now, that's unsurprising."

"Boss, I've gone through the ship contact list on the other side," said the sensors officer. "It seems the Drones are simply heading even deeper into their space, I suppose to a resource facility or factory. After making a certain distance from the anomaly, they leave a sensor spike and disappear off the sensors. I suppose that's their mode of FTL travel, though I have no idea why they didn't simply stick with hyperspace. Not all of them simply leave, though. The ships that stay behind are gathering in a sphere around the anomaly."

"This is what we call a fifty-by-fifty perimeter, a Taiidani classic," Ferdi said. "Every ship gathers in a sphere fifty kilometres in diameter, at least fifty metres of spacing from another. Every gun points either out or in, depending on where you want to keep the enemy. You'll know it as the formation the Loyalist High Guard at the Bridge of Sighs used against the Mothership fleet."

"It is also especially vulnerable to salvage corvettes," Raonaid said.

"Which is why in a proper fifty-by-fifty, everyone stays put and fires only when the enemy comes in range. It will probably remain a rumour forever, but it is said that the High Guard were directly commanded by the Mad Emperor himself in that battle. No wonder they all rebelled afterwards."

"So, are they keeping us out or keeping something from going in on their side?"

"Those ships don't have very distinct weapons ports, but if the Drones are leaving deeper into their space, it is clear that they have little to fear on their side. That means those ships are keeping out unwanted visitors like us. The moment an enemy comes through, it'll be raked by hundreds of those beams."

"Well, up to this point they have been friendly enough. Helm, park us next to the anomaly and see how they react."

"Aye, boss."

"What's the plan?" Ferdi asked.

"They seem to scan anything that comes close, so we let them scan our carrier and let them know we aren't hostile. Then we go on through the other side. The first moment they shoot, we hyperspace out."


 

Offline crizza

  • 210
19th Vattlegroup, Delta Serpentis

Arvida waited, there was not much to do. The fleet was still more or less grouped around the Nightfly and Phoenicia. While the ventilation system worked wonders cleaning the air of her husbands accursed smoke, his chair smelled like a gentlemen’s club. Her habit to pass the time was not smoking, but knifes, which she played with, whirling it around between her fingers. Not much to do at all. Normally she would write letters to her three children, but with subspace somehow gone, this was pointless. Maybe a last will of sorts, ready to be jettisoned in case anything went awry?
For a brief moment she considered talking to Chufu, but the Vasudan radiated discontent, which was natural. The Chief Engineer was obsessed with things he could not understand or solve. She remembered him cursing in vasudan as he worked integrating the vector thrust system into Christopher’s old Apollo, but in the end, he had managed.
“Contact, five ships, oriented behind and low!”
The huge sensors screen lighted up with five purple dots, since the ships did not broadcast any IFF.
“Putting visuals on main screen!”

Whirling the knife even faster, Arvida slowly rose.
Five ships, two Fenris, a single Leviathan and two Argos, not much of a threat.
While her husband used to communicate his orders, Arvada’s left hand flew over a keyboard attached to the chair. A moment later, the three Asasiyun corvettes began to turn towards the unknown ships, in fact, the whole Battlegroup apart from the Phoenicia moved to reposition themselves, with the two Anemois returning into the protection of the two Hecates.
Asasiyun was accompanied by a squadron of new Nyx-class fighters.
“Incoming transmission, putting it on speakers!”
Sitting down again, Arvida sheathed the knife.

"Terran warships, this is the civilian cruiser Well Done. The vessels with me are the cruisers Redfish and Barker, we are the assigned escort for the merchantmen uh Dove and Simona. We have encountered an INEXPLICABLE and DANGEROUS subspace anomaly, warping us several systems in the space of... forgive me, our chronometers are nonfunctional due to the forced jump. Please inform local Command! We are attempting repairs as we speak..."
Arvidas eyebrows shot upwards. Civilian cruisers? Escorting merchantmen in an Argo?

Sure, the civilian merchant fleets which plied the subspace routes were manifold, but the GTVA had made it a habit after the NTF Rebellion and the Capella incident to keep track of their ships. And after the brushfires had calmed down, decreed that no capital ship was to be sold to civilians. This offered the chance of pirates.

“Someone check their codes.” Something was clearly off, why had these ships no nameplates? Or had they cleaned them? Questions over questions.

“Vice Admiral? I’ve run the names through the database. They are… well, they are old. The Well Done, Redfish and Barker last appeared during the NTF rebellion, but afterwards… they were presumed destroyed. Same goes for the Dove and Simona.”

Arvida sighed, another mistery to solve. Rerouting a comm channel through the Vengeance, she began to speak.

“Civilian cruiser Well Done, you’re in a restricted GTVA area. We have encountered similar problems, contact to Command and Subspace travel is currently not possible.”
Arvida left the channel open.
“Well Done, your ship IDs are old. The last documented use was during the NTF Rebellion in 2366. We haven’t seen them in 19 years. Care to explain?”

Closing the channel, she waited. Whatever this was, if they tried anything funny, they would find themselves outclassed in any regards by the corvettes of Asasyun. Next to her Chufu chuckled.

“You know Redhead, this is redolent to the time we fled from Regulus with the Isfahan and your Deimos Ravenheart. How did Christopher call it? The Mexican standoff with those three NTF cruisers. The Repulse and Belisarius hot on our heels, vasudan civilian ships in tow…”

Mentioning it, Arvida remembered it of course. This engagement had left Christopher reeling. Being confronted by determination bordering on fanatic for the first time, the NTF ships had refused to stand down and had been destroyed.
Looking and the jump gate to Terra, the irony was not lost on her.
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Offline HLD_Prophecy

  • PVD_Hope in a former life
  • 29
  • A Typhon-class destroyer.
********************************
Well Done, your ship IDs are old. The last documented use was during the NTF Rebellion in 2366. We haven’t seen them in 19 years. Care to explain?”

Guderian flicked a switch that had been bolted to the side of the comms console. Immediately the feed flickered, guttered, spitting static across the screen in a remarkable simulation of battle damage. Turning to his staff officer, he spoke moderately, as though commenting on the weather:

"I need that crash jump."

"Buy us all 'round sixty more seconds sir! I will hand signal you - "

Guderian nodded. "Pass prep orders. We're out of here on my mark."

He flipped the switch in reverse. The feed slowly sputtered back into clarity - not too rapidly, though, and some artifacting remained.

"...Ma'am, I repeat, ma'am? Comms disruption here. I think the feed systems were... damaged, in the forced jump. Forgive me, ma'am - I think I misheard you. The last time our codes were checked out... it was around early 2366, ma'am, as you said. We're used to operating in backwater systems, where the regulations are a little more... infrequently enforced, if you'll forgive me for saying so. But that said, it wasn't that much more than a year ago, when that blasted Rebellion started. When you responded, it sounded like you said 19 years, that threw me off. The feed is damaged, as I said. If you'd like to contact local command to get us checked out, we can hold position..."

 

Offline crizza

  • 210
Arvida waited and read the data being forwarded by the four Charybdis’ AWACs. These ships were odd. The visual quality started to worsen the moment she’d sent the last transmission. Maybe some degrading damage in their Comm systems or…

“Chufu, what do you think of their overall status?”

The huge vasudan stomped towards ab console and took the data in as a parched man would swallow water.
“They are fine, no structural damage as far as the readings go.”

Arvida nodded, she had figured this for herself, yet had ordered the AWACs of Navigator Squadron to run monitoring scans on them.

"...Ma'am, I repeat, ma'am? Comms disruption here. I think the feed systems were... damaged, in the forced jump. Forgive me, ma'am - I think I misheard you. The last time our codes were checked out... it was around early 2366, ma'am, as you said. We're used to operating in backwater systems, where the regulations are a little more... infrequently enforced, if you'll forgive me for saying so. But that said, it wasn't that much more than a year ago, when that blasted Rebellion started. When you responded, it sounded like you said 19 years, that threw me off. The feed is damaged, as I said. If you'd like to contact local command to get us checked out, we can hold position..."

Chufu grumbled softly, while Arvada’s hand went for the knife again.

Well Done, listen carefully. This might be difficult to understand, but the year is 2385. The NTF rebellion has been over for 18 years. Subspace communication or travel for that water are not possible as of now. We have contacted 2nd fleet HQ at Delta Serpentis by means of radio transmission, but this will take time.”

Arvida looked at the screen showing the progress of the Asasiyun corvettes. If they tried anything funny, the Alamut’s single Ice Queen and one of two Auroras could obliterate the Leviathan in one blast, the two Fenris’ and Argos’ wouldn’t last much longer when confronted by the Hassan-i Sabbah and Rashid ad-Din Sinan Chimeras.

Well Done, I know this might be difficult to understand, but you need to stay put. Charging subspace drive will simply accelerate you to terminal velocity, but being unable to make the jump…”

Arvida stopped talking. A cold shiver running down her spine. She remembered the pictures of the Repulse trying to ram the Colossus. Letting her hand fly over the keyboard, she ordered the ships to disperse, thus creating overlapping fields of fire. If these ships were really what they said they were, someone could snap and use a ship as a bullet. Off screen Chufu coughed and motioned to the screen showing the collected data.

Well Done, are you charging your subspace drives?”

She felt like having a lump of ice in her belly. The 19th had a killing potential which far exceeded that of the three outdated cruisers, but they had just started to turn.
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Offline HLD_Prophecy

  • PVD_Hope in a former life
  • 29
  • A Typhon-class destroyer.
********************************
The staff officer flashed the thumbs-up at Commodore Guderian. "Sir, we are GO for crash jump!"

"Hold!"

Guderian stared at the comms feed.

They could be lying. Tricks like these are used on pirates or misbehaving civilians all the time. Having a battlegroup behind you tends to make people believe what you say without thought. We just experienced a strange subspace anomaly ourselves. Are they lying about the time, the space, or both? Unless...

He whirled to one side. "Nav officer, can we get the star map backups?"

The relevant officer nodded. "Sir, bringing up the maps for this region of space, from this perspective... sir, I have the maps for a few days before and after we last saw NTF space. Sir, what we're seeing outside doesn't match at all. Closest match for the star patterns we'd see in Delta Serpentis from these coordinates... sir, we have a very, very close much just about... 19 or 20 years after we left. She... sir?"

Guderian dropped his closed fist softly on the deck. Bosch would have wanted him to choose a course of action... and then take it without wavering. He replaced his Commodore's cap, stood as tall as he could, and keyed for the comms feed. This time there was no disruption.



"Ma'am, you are speaking with Commodore Guderian of the Neo-Terran Front - yes, your sworn enemy. This is the 5th Cruiser Squadron. We are charging jump drives for immediate escape. I do not know what has happened or what sick game you are playing, but we will not parley willingly, nor without demanding information in return. You have us outgunned, yes - but the slightest false move on your part and we will gladly jump right through the heart of your battlegroup. And our secrets will go to fate along with us. I want answers, ma'am - is the rebellion over? Where is Admiral Aken Bosch? Why has subspace travel failed - assuming you are not lying about that as well?"

"You know how much I value the word of a privileged GTVA Vice Admiral. We have been dealing with your kind since the coup that started this mess."

"It is simply a fact that this mysterious event has happened. A curse on the circumstances that bought us to this impasse. A curse on the GTVA if this impasse is your design. I have no need to destroy your vessels without due cause. At this juncture... if we cooperate, we can both get what we need."

"We await your response. Take what time you need. Bring that weaponry of yours no closer."

Guderian had caught a hint of icy fear in his opponent's voice. He smiled. As higher-ranking officers were usually competent at masking their emotions... well, it could not be denied that he took grim pleasure at having made a GTVA Rear Admiral feel terror.
« Last Edit: December 09, 2018, 07:01:37 pm by HLD_Prophecy »