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Offline Kurt

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Republic: Advance in Dregluk Space, 2142
« Reply #60 on: December 26, 2018, 09:11:51 AM »
This report covers action across a number of systems.  To assist visualization of what’s going on, I will be putting a warp line ‘map’ into the write-up periodically.  Hopefully that will help.   These reports will cover the advance into the Dregluk Imperium.  Reports covering events in the rest of the Republic will be posted separately. 

Note: I will be posting a pic of the star map at some point in the near future. 

Sol---Washington---Denver---Miami---Portland

January 28, 2142, Portland system
The fleet scout Kit Carson was just 34 mkm’s from the jump point back to the Miami system when its extremely large thermal sensors detected sixteen Dregluk ships of an unknown class.  The Dregluk ships have a thermal signature slightly higher than that of a standard Dregluk DD, are moving at 1,600 km/s almost directly away from the human ships.  Rear Admiral Chan, aboard the HuK Assistance, orders the scout to trail the Dregluk ships, likely civilian ships, but to get no closer than 350 mkm’s from the Dregluk group. 

February 12, 2142, 2053 hours, Portland system
The scout observes as the sixteen Dregluk ships, tentatively ID’d as non-warships of some sort, jump out of the system.  Word is sent back to the warships on the jump point to Miami.  The scout then reduces speed to just faster than the Dregluk ships, so as to avoid overtaking them, and the warships begin moving up towards the new jump point. 

February 15, 2142, Portland system
The scout arrives at the jump point that the Dregluk ships disappeared through three days earlier.  The warships are still over two and a half days behind.  The commander of the scout ship, Lt. Commander Faulkner, decides to take a risk and orders his ship to jump to the far side.  The scout materializes in a binary system with a G6-V primary and a G8-V secondary star.  The jump point is deep within the primary star’s planetary system, and the Dregluk ships are approximately 317 mkm’s out-system of the scout’s location, and moving away.  Lt. Commander Faulkner orders his ship to return to the Portland system to update the warships, then returns to begin following the Dregluk ships.  The new system is designated the Salt Lake system. 

The system’s secondary star is close enough to be reachable with a few days travel.  Between the two stars the system contains several type T planets that would be good targets for colonization, including one orbiting the secondary star with an oxygen-nitrogen atmosphere and a colony cost of .63.  There doesn’t appear to be populations on any of the planets or other orbital bodies. 

Sol---Washington---Denver---Miami---Portland---Salt Lake

February 28, 2142, 1032 hours, Portland System
The warships that had been following the fleet scout, which had been in turn following the Dregluk ships deeper into the Dregluk Imperium, had been sitting in the Portland system, at the jump point to the Salt Lake system, waiting for the scout to report that the Dregluk ships had jumped out.  Their waiting was interrupted when ten additional ships of the same class that the scout was following appeared one the fleet’s sensors.  The ten Dregluk ships were approaching the jump point at 1,800 km/s.   The task force’s active sensors revealed that the Dregluk ships were 31,250 tons, and were almost certainly non-warships given their low speed and the fact that none had ever been observed attacking human forces.  Not knowing if the Dregluk ships had spotted his force, and not wanting them to get between his force and the scout, Rear Admiral Chan ordered his task group, the 1st Attack Group, to intercept the Dregluk ships.   

1157 hours, Portland system
The three HuK’s were approaching combat range.  The Dregluk ships showed no sign that they knew that the Republican forces were anywhere near them, and continued to sail blithely towards the jump point.  Admiral Chan held his fire until all of his lasers were capable of hitting the Dregluk ships and then opened fire at 238,000 kilometers.  Accuracy was poor at that range, but even so they began scoring hits.  The range closed rapidly, and as it did their accuracy went up.  Soon, both of the Dregluk ships targeted by the HuK’s were streaming atmosphere. 

Thirty seconds after opening fire, one of the targeted Dregluk ships comes apart in a ball of flame, and the HuK’s shift their fire to the next ship in their targeting que.  After that the Dregluk ships fell one after another, carved into chunks by the HuK’s lasers.  The tentative identification of the ships as civilian cargo haulers seemed confirmed, as none of them fired a weapon during the engagement.  None got close to the jump point. 

Rear Admiral Chan sends a message back to Admiral Wallace on Bastion, informing her of this development.  The Dregluk freighters they just destroyed appeared in the Portland system through a previously undetected jump point, as they did not enter the system through the only other known jump point, to Miami, as that was secured by a picket ship.  He had assumed that they were following the group of Dregluk freighters deeper into the Dregluk Imperium, but it was possible that they were following the freighters on their outward-bound path, away from the heart of the Dregluk Imperium, which would put the Dregluk navy behind them, instead of in front of them. 
   
February 30, 2142, 0316 hours, Salt Lake system
The scout following the Dregluk ships lost contact with the Dregluk squadron and immediately detected a surge indicating the use of a jump gate.  Word was sent back to the warships at the jump point back to the Republic and the scout set out for the new jump point. 

Sol---Washington---Denver---Miami---Portland---Salt Lake---El Paso

March 1, 2142, newly discovered system (El Paso)
The scout follows the Dregluk ships into the new system.  It discovers that the new system is a quaternary system with a K4-V primary orbited by a K7-V, L3-VII, and T6-VII.  The last two stars are very distant from the primary and effectively out of reach.  Both the A and B components have numerous planets.  The scout’s entry point is located almost directly between the A and B components, approximately 4.3 billion kilometers out.  The Dregluk ships are headed inwards, towards the primary.  The system is given the designation: El Paso. 

The scout is now five jumps beyond Washington.  Picket ships have been stationed at the Washington-Denver jump point, the Denver-Miami jump point, and the Miami-Portland jump point to maintain communications with the fleet, but until more picket ships come up from Earth that was the end of the picket ship line.  Therefore, Admiral Chan had stationed a LR Missile Boat at the Portland-Salt Lake jump point, and would do so at the Salt Lake-El Paso jump point as well when they moved forward.  That was a risk, as the missile boats had only limited sensors, but maintaining communications with Bastion in the Washington system was critical.   
   
March 5, 2142, Portland System
The missile boat assigned to picket the jump point from the Portland system to the Salt Lake system picked up the incoming Dregluk ships just a million kilometers out as they approached the jump point to jump to the Salt Lake system.  Fortunately, the contacts were all identified as the same class of Dregluk civilian ships they had encountered previously.  It immediately jumped through to Salt Lake and sent a contact report off to the rest of the task force at the jump point to the El Paso system.  Then it moved off of the jump point so as to remain out of sight of the Dregluk ships.  The Dregluk ships jumped into Salt Lake on schedule and continued on towards the jump point to El Paso without deviation. 

Sol---Washington---Denver---Miami---Portland---Salt Lake---El Paso

March 11, 2142, Portland System
Five additional Dregluk civilian ships are detected approaching the jump point to the Salt Lake system.  The missile boat jumped through and warned the task force at the far jump point, as it had before.  The first group of civilian ships had not yet reached the jump point to El Paso. 

March 16, 2142 Portland System
A single Dregluk civilian ship is detected approaching the jump point to Salt Lake system.  Warning is sent to the task force. 

March 19, 2142, Salt Lake system
Eleven Dregluk civilian ships are picked up by the lead LR Missile Boat’s sensors approaching the jump point to El Paso.  Three HuK’s are sent out to destroy the ships before they can reach the jump point.  When they caught the Dregluk civilian ships the HuK’s ripped through them just as they had before, leaving a trail of hull plating and life pods in their wake. 

March 24, 2142, El Paso System
Additional Picket Ships have made their way forward and Admiral Chan has been able to recall the missile boats he detached for picket duties.  The fleet scout is now approximately 3 billion kilometers from the jump point, still headed in-system and following the Dregluk civilian ships. 

March 25, 2142, Salt Lake System
The second group of Dregluk civilian ships detected by the picket ship at the jump point to Portland come within range of the sensors at the jump point to El Paso.  The HuK’s, which have been waiting at the wrecks of the first group, set out to intercept the five new ships. 

The HuK’s hold their fire until almost point-blank range and then their lasers demolish the civilian ships quickly. 

Sol---Washington---Denver---Miami---Portland---Salt Lake---El Paso

March 29, 2142, El Paso System, 1349 hours
Lieutenant Meisner, Officer of the Watch aboard the fleet scout Kit Carson, had been dozing at his console for the last hour.  For twenty-eight days the scout had been following the never-to-be-sufficiently-damned Dregluk ships as they plodded through the El Paso system, and Lt. Meisner and his fellow officers had had little to do but periodically check that the scout was maintaining position on the group of Dregluk ships.  Aside from that very little had happened, aside from dispatching the occasional status report to the ships at the jump point, or receiving updates from those same ships.  It was boring, boring, boring.  He sighed.  They had all been so happy when they first spotted the Dregluk ships almost exactly two months ago.  The Dregluk ships were going somewhere, and they seemed oblivious to their presence.  The chance to gain more intelligence on the Dregluk Imperium seemed too good to pass up.  That was two months ago, though.  Aside from moments of excitement every time they jumped into a new system, it had been two long and unremitting months of boredom since them.  Usually, Meisner used a lot of his watch time to set up his next move for the Galactic Conquest game he and some of the other officers had going, but they had decided to take a break recently and so recently he mostly tried to spend his time staying awake.  Usually the CO would take the day watch, but lately, with morale dipping, Lt. Commander Faulkner had decided to start rotating his watch, spending time with each set of watch crews to ensure they knew he cared, and also to ensure that he knew what was going on.  In theory Meisner understood and agreed with what his CO was doing, the problem was that the boredom was getting to everyone. 

Lt. Meisner’s musing about the rampant boredom vanished as the ship’s AI chimed to signal a status change.  Meisner’s eyes swiveled to the plot to see a pulsing red icon in El Paso A’s inner system, over El Paso-A II.  Meisner’s complexion whitened as he leaned closer and realized that the icon indicated a population on the planet!  Just as that realization hit, his console beeped for attention.  He looked and saw that it was Lieutenant Josephs, who had duty in the sensor shack today. 

The scout’s quaint sounding “sensor shack”, was in fact an ultra-modern, high-tech information/command center where the information gleaned from the ship’s massive thermal sensors was turned into useful information.  The fifteen-person crew usually on duty in the shack were some of the best sensor experts in the fleet, and given the fact that the scout’s thermal sensor was larger than a missile boat all by itself, they had a lot of information to work with.   Meisner keyed the comm request, and Lt. Joseph’s excited face appeared in a comm window on his console.  “What have you got for me?”

Lt. Josephs smiled.  “Definite Dregluk population.  Thermal signature of 1275, approximately 1.2% that of Earth.  Approximately a third that of the mining complex on Venus.  We are estimating this to be an outpost of some sort, possibly on the order of one of our outer asteroid or comet mining posts.”

Lt. Meisner frowned.  “Capabilities?”

Josephs shook her head.  “Unknown.  Not enough data.  This could be a mining outpost, naval base, or sensor listening post.  There is just no way to know given the information we have.”

Lt. Meisner’s frown deepened.  A thermal signature of 1275 wasn’t all that strong for a population, but it could still represent a significant military presence.  A standard Republican listening post containing twenty DSTS’s only had a signature of one hundred, after all, and Bastion, which had a major naval maintenance post as well as a listening post and a lot of fortresses, had a signature only 50% larger than whatever that was in front of them.  “Very well.  Continue monitoring.  I’m going to wake up the Captain.”

Josephs grinned.  “Good luck!”  The Captain was notoriously…difficult, about being woken without sufficient justification. 

Meisner smiled back.  “I don’t think I’ll need it for this.  A Dregluk base, or population?”  Josephs nodded and broke the connection.  Meisner punched in the code for the CO. 

Lt. Meisner was right.  Lt. Commander Faulkner was just as excited over their discovery as everyone else on the crew was.  Finally, they were getting somewhere!  Faulkner ordered Lt. Meisner to send a contact report back to the jump point and to come to a halt while the sensor shack evaluated the situation.  El Paso-A II was a dwarf planet with around 16% the gravity of Earth and no atmosphere to speak of.  That argued that the Dregluk installation was more likely either a military outpost or a mining outpost, but without direct observation there was no way to determine that.  The sensor shack hadn’t detected any signs of active sensors being used, but the scout wasn’t really well set up to detect active sensors, a flaw that was being remedied in the next round of refits. 

Out of an abundance of caution, Lt. Commander Faulkner ordered the Carson to change course for a waypoint just inside of the primary star’s asteroid belt, offset away from their current location.  The waypoint was set to allow them to continue to observe the Dregluk ships without getting too close to the Dregluk outpost.  The Carson was a wonder of modern stealth engineering, with low-profile engines that emitted just 25% of the thermal energy that a standard engine would have, and, in addition, had cloaking systems to mask its profile against active sensors.  Even with all of that, Lt. Meisner fully approved of Lt. Commander Faulkner’s caution.  The Carson had a single CIWS emplacement, and little else in the way of defenses.  Caution was the name of their game. 

The possibility that the Dregluk ships were freighters delivering a cargo was very disturbing.  The entire mission was predicated on the assumption that they would be following the Dregluk ships further INTO the Dregluk Imperium, not to the outskirts of the Imperium.  If true, that suggested that the route the Dregluk warships were following to get to the Washington system was somewhere behind them, and that their origin was not in front of them.  Lt. Commander Faulkner dispatched that cheery thought off immediately, as soon as his tactical people came up with it. 

March 30, 2142, Salt Lake System
The last Dregluk civilian ship detected entering the Salt Lake system appears on the sensors of the warships at the jump point.  The three HuK’s, loitering over the corpses of their last kills, set out to intercept the incoming Dregluk ship.  Once again, the HuK’s hold their fire until they are at point-blank range and when they do commence firing it takes only seconds to reduce the Dregluk ship to scrap.   

April 3, 2142, El Paso system
The Dregluk civilian ships continue past the Dregluk outpost, forcing the Carson to leave its waypoint to keep them within range of its sensors.       
   
Washington System, Bastion Fortress Complex
Admiral Wallace has been fretting about the risk to her forward elements.  The near certainty that a third jump point exists in the Portland system, and that that jump point leads into the Dregluk Imperium, has been a constant nagging worry since Admiral Chan sent his message concerning that possibility.  Unused to inactivity, Admiral Wallace finally decides to deal with the situation as her instincts have been demanding.  She orders her flagship and her assault ships forward, supported by a force of frigates.  They will move forward to the Miami system, where they will be positioned to support Admiral Chan’s force, or to intercept a Dregluk force headed towards the Washington system. 

Sol---Washington---Denver---Miami---Portland---Salt Lake---El Paso
               |
               Unknown(Theorized)

April 6, 2142, Portland System
The picket ship stationed at the Portland-Salt Lake jump point detects three Dregluk civilian ships approaching the jump point.  The picket ship jumps through to the Salt Lake system and withdraws from the jump point to allow the Dregluk ships to transit unmolested.  A message warning the warships at the jump point to the El Paso system is sent once the ship is in the Salt Lake system.   

April 7, 2142, El Paso system
The scout’s crew detects a second Dregluk installation in the El Paso system, this time on the second moon of the fourth planet.  The planet is a gas giant, while the moon in question is smaller than Luna, but with a higher gravity, indicating it is unusually dense.  The Dregluk ships go into orbit over the moon while the scout watches from a distance. 

April 9, 2142, Portland system
Late in the day the picket ship in the Portland system, at the Portland-Salt Lake jump point, detected five Dregluk cruisers and four destroyers headed towards its position, approximately 19.4 mkm’s out and closing.  The picket ship sent a warning message to the picket ship at the other jump point in the Portland system, and then jumped through to the Salt Lake system.  Once in the Salt Lake System, the picket ship sent a warning message to the warships at the jump point to the El Paso system, and then set a course at maximum speed to join the warships. 

The picket had managed to open the range to 25 mkm’s when the Dregluk force jumped into the Salt Lake system behind them. 

April 13, 2142, Salt Lake system
The picket ship arrives at the jump point to El Paso, and moves into position next to the warships waiting there.  The Dregluk ships were left far behind, and should arrive in approximately 2 days.   

April 14, 2142, Miami system
Admiral Wallace and the 1st Fleet arrive at the jump point to Miami in the Denver system, and jump through to rendezvous with the support ships left behind by Admiral Chan.  After refueling, the 1st Fleet and the support ships set out for the jump point to the Portland system. 

April 15, 2142, 1351 hours, Salt Lake system
The Dregluk force appears on the active sensors of Admiral Chan’s force at the jump point to the El Paso system.  It is 425 mkm’s out and headed in at 4,607.  The force is composed of five cruisers and four destroyers.  Only one of the destroyers is a known class, this is the first time the rest of the ships have been seen.  The one known destroyer is a Crow class, equipped with twelve size three missile launchers. 

Seven hours later the twenty-two missile boats assigned to Admiral Chan’s force fire their Bludgeon III missiles, all targeted on the five Dregluk cruisers.  Three hours later the five cruisers were wiped from space.  The remaining Bludgeon III missiles acquired new targets with their internal sensors and three destroyers were destroyed as well.  The last surviving Dregluk destroyer turns back and begins racing away.  Space is now clear, although Admiral Chan’s force has expended its missiles. 

Sol---Washington---Denver---Miami---Portland---Salt Lake---El Paso
               |
            Unknown(Theorized)

April 16, 2142, Miami system
The 1st Fleet under Admiral Wallace has arrived at the jump point to the Portland system.  The Portland system is obviously the site of an undiscovered jump point that leads to somewhere important in the Dregluk Imperium as the Dregluk naval force appeared here, as did the Dregluk civilian ships.  Unfortunately, the jump points in the Portland system are widely separated, and it is possible that if Admiral Wallace advances with her entire fleet that they could be cut off.  In addition, if they move forward, they will be leaving the route towards Washington unguarded.  After some consideration, Admiral Wallace decides to detach a force of eight frigates to move forward, led by the battlecruiser Mars.  The rest of her force will remain at its current position, to block anything coming out of the Dregluk Imperium. 

In the El Paso system, Admiral Chan dispatches the picket boat that had been stationed at the Portland-Salt Lake jump point back to its station to re-establish communications with Admiral Wallace.  To avoid running into the last Dregluk DD, the picket ship is given a course that arcs out away from the system’s star and then back in to the jump point. 

April 20, 2142, Salt Lake system
Three Dregluk freighters are detected heading towards the jump point to El Paso. 

Late in the day the picket ship arrives at the jump point to the Portland system, re-establishing contact with the 1st Fleet and Admiral Wallace.  The frigate group detached by Admiral Wallace is just 240 mkm’s from the jump point and within active sensor range when the picket ship appears.  Upon hearing that a Dregluk DD may be headed back to the jump point, Captain Webster, CO of the Mars, positions his group away from the jump point to observe the Dregluk ship if it hasn’t already passed through. 

Admiral Wallace orders Admiral Chan and his force to return to the Portland system and join the main force of the 1st Fleet.  In addition, she orders the Kit Carson to abandon its observations of the Dregluk outpost and the freighters and to return to Portland as well.  She wants to focus her forces on the Portland system and locate the jump point theorized to exist in the system and suspected to be the entry point for both the Dregluk warships and civilian ships. 

Several hours later a single Crow class DD is detected headed towards the main 1st Fleet force in the Portland system stationed at the jump point to Miami.  This destroyer appeared out-system of the force at the jump point, and directly opposite of where it would have appeared had it come from the Salt Lake system.  In any case, the single Crow class DD with the Dregluk force in Slat Lake had been destroyed, meaning that it was a new contact, possibly in route to raid either Washington or the Solar System.  It quickly becomes clear that the DD isn’t headed for the jump point to Miami, but rather past it on its way…somewhere. 

The lone destroyer definitely isn’t headed towards the only other known jump point in the system, the one to Salt Lake, either.  Intrigued, instead of merely destroying it Admiral Wallace detaches the assault ship Prince of Wales and the AMM Frigate Tokyo to shadow the Dregluk ship.  Perhaps it was returning to base, and would reveal the undiscovered jump point leading back to the Dregluk Imperium.  Of course, there was the little matter of just where it had been coming from, as well. 

Sol---Washington---Denver---Miami---Portland---Salt Lake---El Paso
               |
                Unknown(Theorized)

April 21, 2142, 0242 hours, Portland system
Right on schedule, the last DD from the Dregluk force destroyed in the Salt Lake system reappears on the jump point to Salt Lake in the Portland system.  Task Group 1.3, led by the BC Mars, is positioned 220 mkm’s in-system of the jump point and picks up the transit and the DD on its active sensors. 

Eighteen minutes later, Task Group 1.4, consisting of the Prince of Wales and Tokyo, detected two more Dregluk ships 105 mkm’s beyond the lone Crow class DD.  The two new ships were a Fiend class CA and a Raven class DD.  The Fiend and the Raven are AMM ships, while the Crow mounts ASM launchers. 

By this time Task Group 1.3, standing off of the jump point to Salt Lake, has identified the course of Dregluk DD that recently entered the system from Salt Lake.  This DD is also headed across the system, but not towards anything known.  Worse, its course does not intersect with that of the other two groups of Dregluk ships in the system.  Captain Webster aboard the Mars orders his group to shift position slightly away from the Dregluk DD’s course to allow it to pass by.  Once it has past the task group, Webster’s ships will fall in behind it and follow it to its destination.  It is Admiral Wallace’s hope that one of the Dregluk ships will lead her forces to the theorized jump point suspected to exist in the system. 

Twenty minutes later, both groups of Dregluk ships off of the jump point to Miami turn towards the jump point and the Republican forces there.  Captain Webster orders the Prince of Wales to engage the leading Crow class DD with her Bludgeon ASM’s, in the hopes that with their ASM ship out of play, the two AMM ships will disengage.  The Prince of Wales is a relatively new ship, just out of the yards six months ago, and it takes her crew twenty seconds to launch ten Bludgeon III missiles at the Dregluk DD.  Two hours and twenty-seven minutes later the Bludgeons slammed into the Dregluk DD.  The big Dregluk destroyer managed to shoot one of them down with its CIWS, but the other nine hit the destroyer, staggering her.  Once the Dregluk DD cleared the fireballs it was clear that it had been heavily damaged as it was streaming atmosphere and hull plating, and its speed had been reduced to 1675 km/s.  Captain Webster gave the order and a second salvo of five Bludgeon ASM’s roared away from the Prince of Wales. 

Two and a half hours later the Bludgeon missiles wiped the Dregluk DD from the universe.  Its task completed, Task Group 1.4 waited to see what the second group of Dregluk ships would do now that the Crow class DD was gone. 

One hour later it was clear that the Dregluk had had enough.  The cruiser and destroyer had turned away from the jump point and were moving away.  Admiral Wallace ordered the ASM frigate Huron to join the Prince of Wales and the Tokyo, and soon the three ships set out to shadow the Dregluk ships as they retreated. 

At 1025 hours, in the Salt Lake system, the three HuK’s of Task Group 1.1 had closed to point blank range of the three Dregluk freighters detected closing on the jump point.  One by one the three ships picked a target and opened fire.  As always, the crack crew aboard the Assistance was the first to get their weapons into action, their lasers stabbing deeply into the thin-skinned Dregluk ships.  In forty-five seconds the three Dregluk freighters were reduced to scrap and the HuK’s moved on, following the rest of the force to the jump point to the Portland system. 

April 24, 2142, Miami system
Admiral Wallace sends a request back to the Admiralty in the Solar System.  She asks for a forward base to be set up in the Miami system to support her operations in the Portland system and beyond.  She would prefer to have a base in the Portland system, but the system has no planets or other bodies to establish a base on, so Miami will be the next best option.  The Admiralty has been expecting this request and promptly grants permission.  Admiral Wallace then orders the UNREP ship assigned to her fleet to divert to Miami-A II, a terrestrial type planet in the best position to support her forces.  Once there the tanker will off-load the bulk of its fuel and then return to the Solar System to refuel.  In the Solar System, industry begins producing DSTS’s destined to become the new listening post in the Miami system.   

April 25, 2142, Portland System
Task Group 1.4, composed of the assault ship Prince of Wales, the ASM frigate Huron, and the AM frigate Tokyo, detects a new Crow class Destroyer ahead of the Dregluk cruiser and destroy pair they have been shadowing.  The newly detected destroyer is advancing towards Task Group 1.4, either to close on the human group or to rendezvous with the other Dregluk ships.  Several hours later the new destroyer joins the other two ships and they turn and head inwards towards the human squadron.  Captain Harper, CO of Task Group 1.4, decides to allow them to close to within Thunderbolt ASM range. 

Two hours later the Huron launches all twenty-five of its Thunderbolt IV ASM’s, all targeted on the Crow class DD.  The Dregluk, for the first time ever, intercept human missiles short of their targets with AMM’s, shocking the human crews.  The interceptions start approximately 1 mkm from the Dregluk group, and the Dregluk AMM ships managed to intercept fifteen of the twenty-five missiles before they hit the Crow class DD.  The targeted Dregluk DD managed to destroy one of the incoming missiles with its CIWs, but after the first incoming missile hit the Dregluk ship the Dregluk destroyer disappeared, consumed from within by a massive internal explosion.  The disturbing news that the Dregluk are actually utilizing their anti-missile missiles in defensive operations is immediately sent back to Admiral Wallace in the Miami system. 

Deprived of their offensive missile ship, the Dregluk squadron turns and runs for the outer system, shadowed by Task Group 1.4.  Captain Harper detaches the Huron for rearming, and requests a replacement.  Admiral Wallace dispatches the frigate Eire to join the task group. 

Twenty-two hours later, at 0654 hours on the 27th, Task Group 1.4 detects a previously unknown jump gate in the Portland system.  Interestingly, the Dregluk force that Task Group 1.4 is shadowing is not headed directly towards the jump gate, but rather on its current course it will pass approximately 85 mkm’s to one side of the jump gate. 

Admiral Wallace decides to wait and see what the Dregluk will do, rather than dispatching her fleet to the newly detected jump point.  After all, it is possible, even likely, that there are more jump points in the system. 

Sure enough, eight hours later the Dregluk ships sail right by the jump point and continue on. 

April 30, 2142, Miami system
The 1st and 2nd LR Missile Groups rendezvous with the two Dock Ships waiting for them at the jump point to the Portland system.  Immediately after arriving, the two missile groups begin rotating their missile boats through the dock ships for rearming. 

Sol---Washington---Denver---Miami---Portland---Salt Lake---El Paso
               |
              Unknown(confirmed)

 May 2, 2142, Miami system
The 1st LR Missile Group has completed rearming from the Dock Ships and jumps back to the Portland System.  The 2nd is forced to return to Bastion as the support ships are out of Bludgeon III missiles after resupplying the 1st.   

May 3, 2142, Portland System
The frigates of Task Group 1.3, built around the BC Mars, are running low on fuel.  Captain Webster, after receiving approval from Admiral Wallace, orders his group to close on the Dregluk force they are shadowing.  Before the group can close enough to launch missiles at the Dregluk ships, which are moving away from the task group, the Dregluk ships jump out of the Portland system through the new jump point discovered by Task Group 1.4.  Captain Webster reports this development to Admiral Wallace, and is ordered to move to the jump point and secure it.  Admiral Wallace is dispatching the HuK’s of Task Group 1.1 to probe the jump point, now that they have returned from refueling at the new base in the Miami system. 

May 5, 2142, Sol
The newly organized 1st and 2nd Marine Raider Brigades board a brand-new fast troop transport and set out for Bastion, where they will support 1st Fleet operations. 

In the Portland system, fuel is becoming an issue for ongoing operations.  Worse, Admiral Wallace has been pushing her fleet hard, and deferred maintenance is going to become an issue at some point.  Admiral Wallace is reluctant to order ships out of the system to refuel at this point, though, with Dregluk ships still operational in the system. 

Sol---Washington---Denver---Miami---Portland---Salt Lake---El Paso
               |
             Baton Rouge

May 8, 2142, Baton Rouge system
Task Group 1.1 jumped out of the Portland system, through the unexplored jump point, and found itself 481 mkm’s from a dim T1-VII brown dwarf star.  The brown dwarf primary had no planets or other system bodies, and the Dregluk ships that had entered the system days ago were not within range of the HuK’s sensors.  The Task Group CO reported back, and Admiral Wallace ordered them to remain on the jump point for now.  The new system is designated Baton Rouge.

Admiral Wallace recalled Task Group 1.3, which had been guarding the Portland side of the new jump point, and sent them back to the new forward base in Miami to refuel. 

May 8, 2142, Portland
The Kit Carson returns to the Portland system.  Admiral Wallace orders the scout to return to the jump point to Miami and refuel from the main fleet units there, before continuing on to the newly discovered Baton Rouge system, where it will establish a picket position and watch for Dregluk incursions. 

May 10, 2142, Portland
The two remaining Dregluk ships, a cruiser and a destroyer, are now 5.7 billion kilometers from the newly discovered jump point that the other Dregluk DD used to leave the system, and are continuing to head out of the system.  Task Group 1.4 has been shadowing them, but fuel has become critical.  Admiral Wallace decides to recall Task Group 1.4.  The Dregluk ships don’t seem to be headed anywhere, just away from their pursuers.  If they return, they will be destroyed. 

Task Group 1.4 turns and heads back into the system.  Contact with the two Dregluk ships is soon lost. 

May 14, 2142, Portland
After refueling from the Yamato’s cavernous tanks, the Kit Carson sets out for the jump point to Baton Rouge. 

May 20, 2142, Baton Rouge
The scout Kit Carson enters the Baton Rouge system and sets out towards a point not far from the system primary. 

May 24, 2142, 1732 hours, Portland and Baton Rouge systems
Task Group 1.1, composed of the three HuK’s assigned to 1st Fleet, detects the two Dregluk ships that had been headed out-system, now headed directly towards the jump point they are sitting on.  Admiral Wallace had recalled all other ships for refueling at the jump point to Miami, so the three HuK’s were alone on the jump point.  After some consideration, Admiral Chan sends a message to Admiral Wallace, located 2.7 billion kilometers, or two and a half hours away at light speed, at the jump point to Miami.  After the message is away, he orders his task group to jump through to the Baton Rouge system.  Once there they immediately begin moving away from the jump point on a random vector. 

Two hundred and sixteen minutes later the HuK’s are 106 mkm’s from the jump point, and Admiral Chan orders them to come to a halt and reduce engine power to station-keeping.  In addition, he orders the task group to lower their shields and deactivate their sensors.  From this point on they will be entirely dependent on the Kit Carson, in the inner system, to keep tabs on the Dregluk ships. 

The Kit Carson, which is itself doing its best to imitate a hole in space, watches as the Dregluk ships jump into the system.  Soon, the crew of the KC is able to determine that the Dregluk ships are on a course across the system.  This course will take them in between the two groups of human ships, but not particularly close to either.  The CO of the Carson sends a message to the HuK’s, which cannot see the Dregluk ships at all, to remain silent until the Dregluk ships clear the area. 

Four hours after entering the system the Dregluk ships jumped out through a jump point located 94.6 mkm’s from their entry point.  Admiral Chan orders his group to move the jump point immediately, along with the scout.  He dispatches one of his HuK’s back to the Portland system to report to Admiral Wallace. 

Sol---Washington---Denver---Miami---Portland---Salt Lake---El Paso
               |
            Baton Rouge---Houston

May 25, 2142, 0711 hours, Baton Rouge system
The HuK Intrepid reaches the jump point to Portland and plunges through.  Once on the far side the HuK’s CO sends a message to Admiral Wallace and then immediately jumps back through to Baton Rouge and sets out for the new jump point.  The scout Kit Carson is still seventeen hours away, so the Intrepid has plenty of time to rejoin her group at the new jump point. 

Back in the Portland system, Admiral Wallace dispatches a group of five frigates, designated Task Group 1.3, to the jump point to Baton Rouge, to maintain contact with Admiral Chan.  These frigates are refueled by the assault ship Ark Royal before setting out. 

May 26, 2142, 041 hours, Baton Rouge system
The scout Kit Carson has joined the HuK’s of Task group 1.1 on the jump point.  Shortly after the scout arrived, the HuK’s jump through the unexplored jump point.  They materialize in a system with a G0-V star orbited by five planets, four of which are terrestrial and one gas giant.  The new system is designated the Houston system.  One of the terrestrial planet’s orbits at 146 mkm’s from the primary and is at approximately the same distance from the task group as it emerges.  That planet also houses a Dregluk population or base of significant size, somewhat smaller than the Ganymede colony, which currently houses 72 million people, but still respectable in size.  All of that would be deciphered later, from the sensor logs of the three HuK’s.  Of considerably more importance, at least to the crew of the Intrepid, was the weapon impacts on their shields immediately after entering the system.  The Intrepid was shaken by nineteen low power hits on her shields, reducing them by 16%.  Her CO, Commander Gemma Tyler, desperately tried to regain her wits as her ship shook around her.  Five seconds later another salvo of Dregluk energy weapons slashed in and shook her ship again, taking her shields down to 76%, as Commander Tyler began backing out commands to her crew to begin regaining control over their ship.  On board the other two ships of the group the commanders knew something was wrong, but they were just as blind as the Intrepid.  A few seconds later, though, the Dregluk DD that they had been pursuing appeared, moving away from the jump point.  There was no sign of the Dregluk cruiser, though.   

Admiral Chan ordered his group to independently begin pursing the destroyer as soon as they could bring their engines on line.  After another five seconds the Dregluk firing stopped, possibly because the destroyer was now 47,000 kilometers away, or perhaps the Dregluk were recharging.  Either way, the break was welcome as the Intrepid’s crew struggled to get their engines, sensors, and weapons online. 

Forty seconds after entering the system the Assistance gets underway.  By that time the Dregluk DD is 162 mkm’s out and running at 4,607 km/s, but the Assistance is overtaking at 3,574 km/s.  The Dregluk ship’s lead won’t last long.  Ten seconds after that, the other two HuK’s raced away from the jump point in pursuit of the Dregluk DD.  None of them had their active sensors up yet, but their crews were working on it. 

Thirty seconds later, or one minute and twenty seconds after entering the system, as the Assistance closed on the Dregluk ship, it began taking fire from the fleeing destroyer.  Once again, the hits to her shields were low power, but the human ships were still tracking the Dregluk ship with their thermal sensors, which meant that they couldn’t fire.  Twenty-five seconds later, with their active sensors still down and the Intrepid’s shields reduced to 25%, Admiral Chan was forced to order the Intrepid to drop out of the pursuit. 

For five more seconds the Dregluk DD pounded the Intrepid, but then, as the HuK fell behind, it shifted fire to the Endeavor.  Five seconds after that, finally, the human ships restored their active sensors and they were able to target the Dregluk ship.  Even as the human crews struggled to bring their weapons online the Dregluk ship turned back and began pounding the Intrepid again.  Ten seconds later, even as the Dregluk ship shifted its targeting back to the Endeavor, the Assistance speared the Dregluk ship with her lasers, causing multiple spurts of atmosphere as the destroyer’s armor was penetrated.  In apparent desperation, the Dregluk shifted fire back to the Intrepid, knocking her shields down to minimal strength with their fast-firing particle beams. 

The Intrepid was spared by the next Dregluk salvo, which targeted the Endeavor.  Both the Endeavor and the Assistance fired next, causing more streams of atmosphere to follow the Dregluk ship, and slowing the destroyer.  The hapless Intrepid was the target next, and this time her shields were down.  She suffered minor armor damage from the Dregluk particle beams. 

The Dregluk beams fell silent after that as her active sensors were out, and now the Intrepid’s lasers were firing as well, causing more hull breaches.  Five seconds after that laser barrages from the Assistance and the Intrepid gutted the alien ship, leaving it drifting in a cloud of wreckage and life pods. 

With the area around the jump point now clear, the Intrepid jumped back to the Baton Rouge system to bring the scout forward.  The Kit Carson, once in the system, locates the cruiser and its destroyer companion, both at the Dregluk population on the third planet.  The scout detects an additional, smaller, population on the largest moon of the outermost gas giant (planet #5).  Admiral Chan sends one of his ships back to Baton Rouge to send a message to the ships picketed at the jump point back to Portland, reporting his finds.  Approximately six hours later Admiral Chan receives a reply.  Admiral Wallace orders the fleet to return to Bastion for refueling and overhauls.  The scout will remain in the Portland system, to warn pickets stationed at the jump points back to the Washington system of the approach of Dregluk ships. 

Admiral Wallace, in Portland at the jump point to the Miami system, declares the operation to be a success and sends a message back through the picket communications network to the Admiralty informing them of the newly discovered Dregluk population, and her intent to conquer and invest it as the next step towards destroying the Dregluk Imperium.   
 
May 30, 2142, Portland System
The 1st Fleet is reassembled and Admiral Wallace orders it to set out for Bastion, leaving behind the scout Kit Carson and a picket ship to watch the system. 

June 12, 2142, Washington system
The 1st Fleet arrives over Bastion and sets to refueling and rearming.  Half of the fleet’s frigates go into overhaul status immediately, while Admiral Wallace begins planning Operation Forward Redoubt.  In addition, Admiral Wallace begins to rebalance the forces deployed for the defense of the Washington system, in light of the deep penetration into the Dregluk Imperium and the advanced warning that this will entail.  The pod groups deployed to the Denver and the Los Angeles jump points will be withdrawn to Bastion and overhauled, in preparation for Operation Forward Redoubt.  The numbers of monitors deployed to the jump points will be rebalanced as well. 
« Last Edit: December 26, 2018, 09:13:23 AM by Kurt »
 
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Republic: Feb to May 2142
« Reply #61 on: December 28, 2018, 09:32:44 AM »
These events take place at the same time as the events in the previous “Advance” post. 

February 19, 2142
Word arrives on Earth that the ground forces sent to secure the Obscura listening posts in the Philadelphia system have become bogged down by the automated Obscura defenses and have been unable to make any progress.  As of yet no ground forces have been committed to the Dregluk campaign, so the Consul authorizes a major effort against the Obscura defenses. 

March 15, 2142
The salvage effort in the Washington system is complete.  The salvage program has resulted in the recovery of large amounts of resources, all of which have been transported to Bastion to assist in the ongoing effort to support the 1st Fleet.  In addition, 170 drives were recovered, 52 assorted sensors, 25 magazines, 10 CIWS, 13 ECM/ECCM units, 65 fire control systems, 16 particle beams, 146 missile launchers of assorted sizes, and 44 fusion reactors.  Most of these items will be scrapped, as the Republic has largely exceeded the Dregluk Imperium’s tech level at this point.  The remaining items which might yield useful technological information will be transported back to Earth for examination. 

March 21, 2142, Philadelphia System
Brigadier General Stone, CO of the 2nd Republican Infantry Brigade, calls a halt to attempts to penetrate Obscura defenses on Asteroid #2 and Asteroid #37 in the Philadelphia System.  Two of his four battalions have suffered serious losses, and he decides that continued attacks, with heavy reinforcements on their way, are useless. 

March 28, 2142, Philadelphia system
The first transport with reinforcements arrives and sets an entire infantry brigade down on Asteroid #37.  With six infantry battalions available, the newly arrived CO of the 6th Infantry Brigade launches an assault on the Obscura defenses. 

April 9, 2142, Philadelphia system
Reinforcements have arrived.  Three Brigades are in-system and divided between the two asteroids, and replacements have been dropped at both locations as well.  With six battalions in place to face each Obscura infestation, the local commanders predict quick progress. 

April 20, 2142
Earth’s R&D establishment has completed development work on an advanced jump gate construction module, and with that complete the R&D assets assigned to the project move on to developing advanced salvage systems.  The designs for the Federation’s original gate construction rigs are updated with modern engines and the advanced gate construction module, with a greatly expanded engine module.  While the new gate construction ships won’t be as fast a fleet support ships, they will be almost four times faster than the older Federation designs. 

April 30, 2142, Philadelphia system
The troops assigned to attack the Obscura forces on Asteroid #37 finally succeed in wiping out the automated defenses and the asteroid is secured.  Unfortunately, the Obscura listening post was destroyed in the fighting.  Troop ships begin loading the six battalions from the asteroid for transfer to Asteroid #2, where the Obscura defenses are still holding out. 

May 1, 2142, Sol
Reports from Admiral Wallace’s ongoing operation in the Portland system causes the Admiralty to request a proposal for a refit to the Lake and Brooklyn class frigates to increase their endurance.  This turns out to be a surprisingly complex issue, as yard space is at a premium, and many of the smaller yards will be devoted to new destroyer classes that are intended to replace the older frigates. 

May 24, 2142, Philadelphia system
The Obscura automated defenses finally fall to concerted attack from the human forces.  Unfortunately, once again the fighting has destroyed the DSTS that drew the Republican forces here in the first place.  The troop transports gather to lift off the three brigades deployed to the asteroid.  Two of the brigades will be moved to the innermost planet where the xenology team is trying to get a handle on the ancient city found on the planet, while the other will be returned to Earth. 
 
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Republic: Star Map as of June 2142
« Reply #62 on: December 30, 2018, 01:59:29 PM »
« Last Edit: December 30, 2018, 02:01:54 PM by Kurt »
 
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« Reply #63 on: December 31, 2018, 08:50:50 AM »
June 12, 2142, Earth
A tug begins the laborious process of towing one of the large commercial shipyards from Earth orbit to the Ganymede colony.  The decision has been made to relocate as much of the commercial shipbuilding capacity to Ganymede as possible, to reduce the demands on Earth’s dwindling labor supply.  This will necessarily be a long-term project, as the yards will only be moved when their current projects are finished and when workers are available on Ganymede. 

Late in the day, the 1st Fleet scout, Kit Carson, in the Portland system, detects a Dregluk Demon class cruiser entering the system from Baton Rouge.  The scout’s CO sends a warning back up the line of picket ships to Bastion.  Once the picket ship at the jump point to Miami jumps through to Miami and sends off its message, it speeds away from the jump point to a way point away from the jump point, where it will hide until the cruiser passes. 

As the cruiser leaves the jump point it entered through, it becomes clear that it doesn’t appear to be headed for the jump point to Miami, and towards the Republic.  Instead, it appears to be headed towards the jump point to Salt Lake, possibly headed towards the Dregluk population/outpost located further along that branch of jump lines.  The CO of the Carson decides to follow the Dregluk cruiser to determine its course. 

June 17, 2142, Earth
The plans for the Defender class DDE are finalized, and work begins on converting a shipyard to produce the new ships. 

June 19, 2142, Portland
The Kit Carson, while following a Dregluk Demon class cruiser, detects two Dregluk DD’s coming up behind it.  The DD’s don’t appear to be approaching the scout, rather they are following the cruiser, which is definitely headed towards the jump point to Salt Lake and away from the jump points that would take them to the Republic.  There is some danger that the DD’s might get close enough to detect the scout if they all continue on their current courses, so the Carson’s CO orders the scout to head for the outer system, away from the Dregluk ships.  Their destination is clear, so he has succeeded in his mission.   

July 4, 2142, Earth
With worker shortages continuing on Earth, the Navy decides to relocate all maintenance facilities to Mars and Bastion, both to reduce demand on Earth’s workforce and to increase the maintenance capacity for those two bases so that they can handle the larger ships being built, such as the Star class battleship, and the Hero class Fleet Docks. 

July 5, 2142, Portland
The Kit Carson detects two Mammoth class BB’s entering Portland from the jump point to Baton Rouge.  It soon becomes clear that the BB’s are headed towards the jump point to Miami, and are likely on their way to attack the Washington system.  The Carson jumps to Miami and warns the picket ship stationed at the jump point to the Denver system. 
 
July 10, 2142, Miami system
The Kit Carson watches as the two Dregluk BB’s appear on the jump point from Portland right on schedule.  The Carson and the picket ship normally assigned to Portland are stationed approximately 260 mkm’s from the jump point and the BB’s, powered down to avoid detection.  The BB’s ETA to missile range of the forces on the jump point in Denver leading to Washington is nine and a half days. 

July 12, 2142, Los Angeles
The Home Fleet scout Thomas Tobin had been sitting close to the G4-V star that was the Los Angeles system’s primary, and only occupant, and had been on station for over a year.  It was assigned to picket the Los Angeles system and watch for any signs of Dregluk shipping, but it had been a long, lonely detail, with only regular news reports from home relayed by the picket ship at the jump point to keep them updated.  That all changed on this date when the scout detected a Dregluk ship 1.39 billion kilometers away and closing.  Based on its course, the Dregluk ship had entered the Los Angeles system from Anchorage, and was headed towards the jump point to the Solar System.  Fleet intel showed that this class of unit had been seen before, in the Washington system, and was likely a gate construction unit with a top speed of 1,614 km/s.  The scout sent a contact report back to the picket ship at the jump point to Sol. 

Admiral Law decided that this was too good of an opportunity to cause chaos for the Dregluk, so he dispatched the Home Fleet’s LR Missile Group to intercept the Dregluk ship. 

July 13, 2142, Denver system
The listening post in the Denver system picks up the transit of the two Dregluk BB’s from Miami right on schedule.

July 15, 2142, Miami
The Kit Carson detects two Dregluk Goliath class BB’s entering the system from Portland.  It seems that the Dregluk are reacting to the recent penetration of their space by Republican forces.  A warning is sent to the picket ship on the Miami-Denver jump point. 

July 16, 2142, Miami
The Carson detects three Dregluk DD’s entering the Miami system from Portland.  They immediately set out for the jump point to Denver, following the two Goliath class BB’s.  Shortly thereafter, a Demon class cruiser enters the system as well. 

July 19, 2142, Denver
Three Dregluk DD’s jump into Denver.

At 1327 hours, the leading two Mammoth class BB’s enter active sensor range of the units on the jump point to Washington.  Three hours later the Monitors Antietam and Masada launch sixty Bludgeon IV’s at the two Dregluk battleships.  This is the first use of the latest version of the Bludgeon ASM.  Due to a glitch in the Antietam’s fire control system, it launched half of its missiles five seconds after the main salvo.  That turns out to make no difference when, two hours and twenty-two minutes later the missiles wipe the two battleships from space, leaving ten Bludgeon IV’s searching for targets.  They soon self-destruct when they fail to detect any viable targets.  Interestingly, the two Dregluk battleships only managed to intercept one of the new ASM’s with their CIWS installations. 

The Antietam, having expended her missiles, sets out for Bastion to rearm.  In addition, the Antietam has been on-station for almost a year, so her crew will get a well-deserved R&R break while the monitor is overhauled.  The rest of the ships on the jump point settle down to wait for the next group of Dregluk ships to arrive. 

Admiral Wallace orders the 3rd LR Missile Group to the jump point to Denver to support the two SR Missile Groups and two monitors stationed there. 

July 23, 2142, Los Angeles
Two missile boats from the Home Fleet’s 1st LR Missile Group launch Bludgeon III’s at the Dregluk gate construction ship, 400 mkm’s away.  It takes just one of the twelve Bludgeon III’s to destroy the civilian ship. 

July 25,2 142, Denver System
The second group of Dregluk BB’s is now within range of the ships on the jump point to Washington.  The monitor Masada, which had expended half its offensive missiles on the last group of BB’s, launches the rest of its Bludgeon’s at one of the two BB’s, while five missile boats from the 1st SR Missile Group launch their missiles at the second BB. 

The first missiles to arrive were the Bludgeon IV’s launched by the Masada.  They were 8,000 km/s faster than the older Bludgeon III’s carried by the missile boats, and mounted more powerful warheads and pen-aides as well.  The Dregluk Goliath class jump battleship shot two of the incoming Bludgeon-IV missiles down with its CIWS, and then the big Dregluk ship was ripped apart by two massive internal explosions after being hit by a mere five of the remaining eighteen missiles.  The second BB did better against the older Bludgeon III’s launched by the missile boats, destroying four with its CIWS, and then withstanding sixteen hits before it too was ripped apart by internal explosions. 

That left three DD’s and a lone CA closing on the jump point.  The Monitor Masada jumped out, having expended its missiles, while the remaining ships waited for the Dregluk DD’s to enter missile range. 

Fifteen hours later the three Dregluk DD’s, two Harpy’s and a Vulture, sailed into range of the ships on the jump point.  Six missile boats each launched six Bludgeon III’s at the DD’s, for a total of twelve ASM’s at each DD. 

Three hours later, as the wave of missiles are closing on the DD’s, the ships on the jump point launch against the cruiser, which is now in range.  Four missile boats launch their missiles as the approaching CA.  Even as the missiles leave their launchers, the DD’s are wiped out by an avalanche of Bludgeon III missiles.  Three hours later the Bludgeon III’s wiped the last Dregluk ship in the attack force from space. 

With the threat gone, the missile boats all jumped out to return to Bastion to rearm and resupply.  They leave the monitor Hastings and a picket ship to watch the jump point.   

August 10, 2142, Miami
The Kit Carson detects a Dregluk Buzzard class DD jumping into the system. 

August 16, 2142, Bastion, Washington system
Admiral Wallace dispatches a SR Missile Group to the jump point to Denver to intercept the Dregluk DD observed by the Carson. 

August 20, 2142, Denver
The 1st SR Missile Group launches 12 Bludgeon III ASM’s at the incoming Dregluk DD.  All twelve hit, slowing the destroyer, but the tough ship keeps heading towards the jump point, albeit at a reduced speed.  This class of Dregluk DD is armed with particle beams, and thus Republican forces cannot count on damaged magazines exploding when they take damage to finish off the ship.  A third missile boat launches six more Bludgeon’s at the damaged destroyer.  This second salvo finishes off the Dregluk DD.  The missile group jumps back to Washington and heads home. 

September 1, 2142, Los Angeles
The Home Fleet’s scout deployed to the Los Angeles system detects another Dregluk construction ship entering the system from the Anchorage jump point, apparently headed towards the jump point to the Solar System.  The news is relayed back to Earth by the picket ship at the jump point, and a LR Missile Group is dispatched to intercept the Dregluk ship while it is in the Los Angeles system. 

September 7, 2142, Los Angeles
A LR missile boat launches two Bludgeon III missiles at the Dregluk construction ship still steadily closing on the jump point to the Solar System.  The construction ship manages to shoot one of the Bludgeon’s down with its CIWs and the other only damages the ship.  In response, a second missile launches against the Dregluk ship, this time six Bludgeon missiles.  Once again, the construction ship intercepts one of the incoming missiles with its CIWs, and It takes four of the remaining five missiles to destroy the big civilian ship, indicating that the one missile kill against the first construction ship might have been a lucky hit.  The missile group turns for home. 

September 26, 2142, Mars
The first unit of the new Destroyer Escort class is laid down in the orbital yards.  This 10,000 ton ship is intended to eventually replace the Brooklyn class AMM Frigates in the fleet defense role.  This unit will launch in September, 2143. 
« Last Edit: January 04, 2019, 08:58:06 AM by Kurt »
 
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Republic: Advance on Houston System
« Reply #64 on: January 04, 2019, 09:10:15 AM »
October 26, 2142, Washington System
The 1st Fleet, finally assembled fresh from overhauls, sets out for the Houston system under the command of Rear Admiral (Upper) Wallace.  This will be a major effort to secure the system and seize the Dregluk populations found there, as well as setting up a forward base for the further prosecution of the war against the Dregluk Imperium. 

The assault force will consist of a Planet class BC, four Essex class Assault Ships, three Enterprise class Hunter Killers, seven Brooklyn class anti-missile Frigates, nine Lake class ASM Frigates, and thirty-two long range missile boats.  In addition, the fleet will be towing twenty-four missile pods, which will reduce the fleet’s overall speed to 4,186 km/s, but will provide significant firepower to help secure the Houston system.  The 1st Fleet will be supported by an UNREP fueling ship, four Hero class Fleet Docks (two of which are newly launched), and six munitions ships.   The 1st Fleet’s ground complement will be carried by three Assault Transports, and will consist of three Marine Raider Brigades, four replacement battalions, and two construction brigades.  Meanwhile, on Earth, freighters begin loading DSTS’s for a new listening post in the Houston system, and prefabbed PDC components. 

In addition, Admiral Wallace has convinced the Admiralty to equip her force with the latest missiles, so her ships are setting out with magazines packed with Aegis VI AMM’s, Thunderbolt IV ASM’s, and Bludgeon IV ASM’s. 

The first phase of the plan of attack involves the 1st Fleet advancing to the Houston system, which is the location of two known Dregluk settlements or outposts, located on the third and fourth planets of that system.  In addition, the Houston system is believed to be the route to the interior of the Dregluk Imperium.  Once in the Houston system, the 1st Fleet will establish a base of operations on one of the moons of the fourth planet.   The missile pods, both offensive and defensive, will be deployed at this location, and all ground forces will be landed to ensure security.  Once the forward base is established, the fleet’s support units will be moved forward and munitions and fuel will be landed at the base to support ongoing operations.  Some of the troop ships, and all of the munitions ships and UNREP ships will be dispatched back to Bastion to reload and return.  Once that is complete, the next phase will begin with the invasion of the smaller of the two Dregluk populations.  Once that population is secured, the larger population will be subdued.  As this is taking place, the 1st Fleet will deploy its combat units and attached scout to observe the system and intercept any Dregluk military response, potentially back-tracking Dregluk ships further into their Imperium.  It is an ambitious plan, requiring the 1st Fleet to operate five jumps beyond Bastion, an unprecedented nine billion kilometers from home.  Admiral Wallace is sure that her fleet is up to the challenge.   

November 13, 2142, 2300 hours, Portland system
Alarms began ringing on the missile boats of the three LR Missile Groups in the lead along the fleet’s route of advance.  A single Dregluk ship of unknown class had been detected ahead of them.  The Dregluk ship was destroyer sized.  Almost immediately, two missile boats launched their Bludgeon IV ASM’s at the Dregluk ship.  One and a half hours later the missiles reach their target.  It only takes six to reduce the Dregluk DD to scrap.  The fleet continues on its course. 

November 16, 2142, 0235, Baton Rouge system
The three leading missile boat groups arrive in the Baton Rouge system.  They will wait here for the rest of the fleet to arrive before advancing on the Houston system. 

November 18, 2142, 0235 hours, Baton Rouge system
So far, the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Missile Groups have assembled on the jump point to Portland, along with most of the fleet’s support units and the scout Kit Carson.  The bulk of the 1st Fleet is still seven and a half days behind them, coming up much more slowly.  The jump point to the Houston system, their target, is just 96 mkm’s ahead of them.  Most of the Republican ships have been sitting here for two days, with the most recent arrival the Carson, having jumped in twenty hours ago. 

Suddenly, three Dregluk ships appear on the jump point to Houston.  The Dregluk force is composed of a Fiend class cruiser, a Raven class destroyer, and one of the new Dregluk destroyers the missile boat force encountered five days ago, now designated as the Sheathbill class.  Captain George Franklin, in command of LR Missile Group 1 and a long-serving veteran of the missile boat forces, is the senior officer in command of the advance force.  He orders his group to launch against the Dregluk ships, and seconds later forty-two Bludgeon IV missiles were on their way towards the Dregluk ships. 

Shockingly, the Dregluk ships, two of which are known anti-missile classes, actually begin launching AMM’s against the incoming missiles.  This is unprecedented behavior for the Dregluk, who have only used anti-missile missiles in offensive roles to date.  The Dregluk manage to destroy thirty-four Bludgeon ASM’s before they reach their targets.  In spite of this the cruiser and one of the destroyers are destroyed, and the second DD was damaged and slowed.  Five seconds later the remaining missiles acquired the last DD on their active sensors and wiped it from space.  In the aftermath of the attack, Captain Franklin orders the Fleet Docks to rearm his missile boats.  Captain Franklin immediately dispatches a report back up the chain of picket boats informing Admiral Wallace of the engagement, and also about the new Dregluk interest in actually using their anti-missile capability.   

Three hours later, after the missile boats were rearmed and free of the Fleet Docks, Captain Franklin, operating within his discretion, orders three of his four missile boat groups to advance to the jump point to the Houston system and to jump out.  Once there, they will set up a defensive position that will allow them to engage any approaching Dregluk ships at the maximum range of their Bludgeon missiles. 

Four hours and forty-five minutes later the missile boats transit into the Houston system.  Their sensors confirm the presence of the Dregluk settlement on the third planet soon after entering the system.  No other ships are detected.  Two hours later the missile boat’s computers are able to determine that a second jump point and gate exists in the system, 320 mkm’s out-system of their current location.   

November 25, 2142, Baton Rouge system
The 1st Fleet arrives at the jump point, along with its towed pods.  With the exception of the fleet’s UNREP ship, which is still twelve days behind them, and a brand-new scout dispatched from the Solar System, the fleet is assembled.  Admiral Wallace orders the fleet to advance to the Houston system. 

Several hours later the scout Kit Carson arrives in Houston and joins the missile boats on the jump point.  Its sensitive thermal sensors immediately pick up the smaller Dregluk outpost on the fourth planet. 

One hour later the fleet is in place on the jump point in the Houston system, and the support ships are assembled on the far side of the jump point, out of harm’s way.  It is time to begin the conquest of the Houston system.  The two Dregluk settlements or outposts were on the two most Earth-like planets in the system.  The larger settlement was on a smaller planet with just 24% of Earth’s gravity and a trace atmosphere.  The planet did have a congenial temperature, with the planetary average being 6.8 degrees.  The smaller outpost was on the fourth planet.  This planet was very close to Earth’s size and gravity, and had an oxygen-nitrogen atmosphere with a pressure almost exactly that of Earth.  The similarities ended there, though.  The planet’s average temperature was a chilly -62.6 degrees, making it too cold for immediate colonization. 

No orbital defenses or PDC’s had been observed during the previous mission.  Fleet Intelligence had been unable to determine the level of defenses present on either of the Dregluk colonies.  Therefore, the first step in Admiral Wallace’s plan was to secure a base of operations in the system.  During the planning phase, Admiral Wallace had chosen the second moon of the fourth planet as the best location for their base.  The moon orbited the fourth planet at almost five hundred thousand kilometers, giving it a defensible space should the Dregluk have unexpected defenses on the planet, but was close enough to the smaller colony, which was their first target, to make travel times a minimal concern.   

The 1st Fleet set out for the moon, its sensors probing ahead for defenses or anything that might cause them a problem.  As the fleet approaches the fourth planet its EM sensors detect a Dregluk small ground force present on the planet.  There is no sign of defenses on the colony capable of interfering with the fleet as it enters orbit over the chosen moon and the pods detach. 

With security established, Admiral Wallace orders her support units to enter the Houston system and begin unloading their troops and supplies at the new base.  The orders are relayed by the units waiting at the jump point. 

One day later, with matters well in hand, Admiral Wallace dispatches her three HuK’s, along with a frigate escort, to probe the newly discovered jump point approximately 250 mkm’s out-system of the fourth planet’s orbit. 

With the troop transports twelve hours out, Admiral Wallace and her staff have begun preparations for the planned landing on the fourth planet.  Before the transports arrive, though, a message from the Admiralty is relayed through the jump point to the command ship.  The message has the highest priority, and will change the course of the campaign. 
 
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Offline Kurt

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Republic: A Vote
« Reply #65 on: January 06, 2019, 02:54:28 PM »
November 23, 2142, Earth
(Two days before Admiral Wallace is preparing to launch her ground assault)
“Well, that’s it.”  A funereal pallor hung over the room, a feeling of helplessness that only grew with time, not diminished.

Joe Foster stirred at his desk.  He looked wrung out, his clothes rumpled and his eyes bloodshot.  He looked at his chief of staff and nodded.  “Yes, that’s it.  They are voting now.  We’ve done all that can be done.”  He slumped in his chair, obviously exhausted.  After a minute he stirred again.  “Do you think that we did it?”

Julie Moreno, Consul Foster’s long-time chief of staff, stared at him for a few long seconds before shaking her head.  “No, we didn’t even come close.  Of course, the Human Purity Party is against us, one and all, but we knew that going in.  It took me until today, though, to ferret out the fact that Senator Blake and his conservatives will almost certainly vote against us as well.”

“He’s a fool if he thinks that he will get a better deal from the Purity Party.”

Moreno shook her head.  “He knows he can get a better deal.  At least for now.  Tomorrow is another day, but for today they’ve got the deal that they wanted.  That’s not the real problem though.  With the independents and the minor parties slewing our direction, all we had to do was keep our own coalition together, and we couldn’t.  That’s what I’ve been trying to warn you about for weeks.  Too many of our own people have been getting pressure from their own districts, and passing it on to us.  And we haven’t been answering them.  I’ve been afraid of this for a while.”  She slumped down, a picture of misery.  “I warned you, but you didn’t listen.”

Foster shook his head.  “I listened.  I just couldn’t do what they wanted.  I just couldn’t.”

The honest anguish in his voice brought her head up, her gaze sharpening.  “I know,” she said softly.  She hesitated, but then went on.  “Is this better, though?  When the Motion of No Confidence passes, and it will, you will be out, completely out.  You won’t be able to moderate them then.  If you had acceded to their demands you would have stayed in power and maybe you’d have been able to do something about their plans.”

Consul Foster shook his head.  “That’s not the way it would work.  You know what they want.  They want to eliminate the Dregluk.  All of them.  They don’t want them conquered, they want them gone.  All of them, forever.  There is no compromise there.  If I don’t give the order, exactly the way they want, they will call for a no confidence vote anyway.  And if I do…well then, if I do, then I’ve given up on everything I’ve stood for this entire time.  None of my supporters will ever trust me again, not after that.”  He stopped, a lost look on his face.  He looked up at his chief of staff, his long-time friend, with such a look of hopelessness that she quailed inside.  “And anyway…I can’t.  I just can’t.”  He shook his head, rallying.  “It’s wrong.  The Dregluk Imperium has to be stopped.  They can’t ever be allowed to do what they did to us, or anyone else, again.  But if we take this route, Senator Young’s route, then we will never be able to wash this stain off of us.  Ever.  It’s an irrevocable act.  It’s the easy way out.  We have to do the harder thing.  We have to!”

Moreno smiled sadly.  “You realize that it’s not just Senator Young’s way, right?  She’s got the majority of the people behind her too.  That’s why they are going to win this vote.  This isn’t just them.  This is what the people want, too.  They’ve suffered too much, lost too many people close to them, to ever take a chance that this will happen again.”

Foster shook his head.  “I know.  Believe me, after fighting this particular battle for the last several years, I know.  Don’t you see, though, that’s what makes this even more important.  Yes, the people do think that they want this, and for now, at least, they do.  But once it’s done it’s done, and we can’t take it back.  They will come to regret this day somewhere down the line.  Not tomorrow, or even next year.  But in a decade, or several decades, they will look back on today and say – this was the day where we went wrong.  Where we left our ideals, our idea of who we wanted to be, behind and became something monstrous.  And they will want to take it back, but they won’t be able to.  It will be too late then.  I had to fight.  To stand up for who we want to be as a race, or it isn’t worth it.  We aren’t worth it.  I think that that’s what the people need in a leader, someone who will lead them away from what they think they want, to what they need.  Lauren Young is going to give them what they want, but they’ll regret it, most of them.  She will too, I bet.”

Moreno shook her head.  If only they could see the Consul now, his with his soul bared, and hear his words.  It might have made a difference, but that wasn’t the way politics worked.       

Their wait wasn’t long.  The Senate had voted, and the motion had passed.   Consul Foster stepped down as Consul that afternoon.  Senator Young, as the leader of the coalition that brought the no confidence motion, was asked by the President of the Senate to form a new government.  Her first action, as Consul, was to ask for the resignation of Admiral Law, a move expected by most as Admiral Law was a close associate and long-time supporter of Consul Foster.  Her next action was to dispatch a set of new orders to Admiral Wallace in the Houston system.   
 
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Offline Kurt

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« Reply #66 on: January 08, 2019, 05:19:20 AM »
 
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Offline Kurt

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« Reply #67 on: January 08, 2019, 05:30:27 AM »
November 26, 2142, Houston system
Admiral Wallace looked at the small picture in her hand before returning it to her pocket.  Then she looked around the command deck at her assembled staff.  All of her ship commanders and their officers were watching via holo pickups.  It was time.  “Officers of the Republic!  There was a vote of no confidence in the Senate yesterday and Consul Foster and his administration lost.  Consul Foster resigned yesterday evening, and Senator Lauren Young will be the new Consul.  While a Senator, Consul Young served on the Naval Oversight Committee in the Senate and has been deeply involved in many naval programs, so she is fully aware of our presence here, and our mission.  One of her first acts as Consul was to send us a message confirming her support of the fleet and our mission here.  However, she has fundamental differences with Consul Foster as to the manner in which this war will be waged.  Consul Foster believed that the Dregluk should be shown mercy.”   The ship’s command deck was as silent as a tomb as everyone leaned forward to hear what the Admiral had to say.  “Therefore, Consul Foster’s plan to attack the Dregluk involved our forces taking a greater risk to avoid ‘excessive’ damage to Dregluk populations.”  She paused and looked around the command deck, looking into each of her subordinate’s eyes, and into the holo pickups.  “Consul Young does not share this same belief.” 

At this simple statement the officers assembled on the command deck began cheering.  Admiral Wallace was gratified as the cheering quickly spread throughout the fleet.  While Consul Foster’s policies in regards to the Dregluk were unpopular, his personal popularity was high, and he was revered by most in the Fleet.  She had been worried about how her crews might take the news that he had stepped down, but the cheers reassured her that there wasn’t going to be a problem.  She let the cheering continue for a minute or so before holding up her hands for quiet.  “Therefore, Consul Young has ordered me to reduce all Dregluk defensive positions with orbital bombardment, disregarding any collateral damage to Dregluk civilian populations.”  Once again there were cheers from the assembled officers, and again Admiral Wallace let them vent for a minute or so before calling for silence.  “In addition, I am authorized to eliminate any Dregluk population we encounter, unless, in my sole judgement, they are necessary to our mission for intelligence purposes.”   This time the assembled officers fell silent, absorbing the fact that Admiral Wallace had effectively been given the power of life and death over the Dregluk. 

Admiral Wallace watched her officers carefully, and she could see their growing approval of her orders, even if it wasn’t the enthusiastic joy they had shown earlier.  “Let’s get back to work people!  We’ve got a job to do.”  She made a gesture at her comms officer and the holo pickups were shut down.  She walked over to Lt. Dressler.  “Pam, let the unit commanders know I want a conference in five minutes.” 

The comms officer nodded and got to work as Admiral Wallace walked back to her office to prepare.  Five minutes later she was facing her ship commanders in a virtual conference room.   She nodded at them to signal that they were starting, and once they had all quieted down, she began.  “As you heard, the new Consul has given me the authority to reduce Dregluk defenses with orbital bombardment.  Therefore, before the Marines land on Dregluk Bravo, the Essex will target the Dregluk ground forces and eliminate them.” 

Rear Admiral Bradshaw, the CO of the Essex, stiffened, but then nodded.  He was a close supporter of Admiral law, and therefore by extension of the former Consul as well, but this was a legal order and the Dregluk ground forces were a legitimate target.  “Yes, ma’am.  We will be ready to engage the target at your command.”

“Very well.  After this conference I will coordinate with you and your weapons officer.  Once the bombardment by the Essex is complete, the Marines will land and secure Dregluk Bravo.  Once Bravo is secure, we will turn to Dregluk Alpha.” 

Thirty minutes later Admiral Bradshaw’s assault cruiser launched fifteen Bludgeon IV missiles as the Dregluk ground unit defending Dregluk Bravo.  Seconds later the missiles eliminated the target, and caused considerable collateral damage to the colony and to the planet.  Shortly thereafter, Marines began landing on the planet.  Admiral Wallace dispatched the Essex back to Bastion to rearm, as the assault ship was too large to squeeze into a Fleet Dock.  The fact that she had managed to send Admiral Bradshaw, a friend and confidant of Admiral Law, back to Bastion was lost on no one. 

November 27, 2142, Houston system
The 1st Fleet’s three HuK’s were lined up in front of the unexplored jump point with five frigates close behind them.  At the signal from the lead ship they plunged through the jump point and appeared in a star system with a G2-V primary.  Their entry point was 1.46 billion kilometers from the system primary. 

On board the Assistance, alarms began ringing immediately after the ship entered the new system.  The ship’s thermal sensors detected a Dregluk ship of an unknown type and class approximately 295 mkm’s in-system of their position.  Even more interesting was a massive thermal signature emanating from a large moon of the innermost planet, a massive gas giant approximately the same size as Jupiter. 

As the Rear Admiral Chan got his squadron organized after the transit, he asked for a full analysis of the inhabited moon.  The results were forthcoming fairly quickly.  The moon had a diameter of 5,800 kilometers, putting it between Mars and Mercury in size.  It had an oxygen-nitrogen atmosphere that, at 35% of the pressure of Earth’s atmosphere, was just a bit too thin and oxygen poor for humans to breathe.  The planet was slightly too warm for human habitation as well.  The population’s EM signature was approximately 50% higher than that of Earth, indicating that this was a major population center. 

After two minutes in-system, the HuK’s thermal sensors stabilized and resolved the original contact into five units of the unknown class, along with two Demon class CA’s.  The unknowns were moving away from the jump point at an alarming 10,471 km/s, while the Demon class cruisers were stationary.  At this point Admiral Chan dispatches one of the frigates back to the Houston system to report their discovery.  The new system is designated the Austin system.   As the frigate jumps out the two Demon class cruisers stir, and begin heading towards the human ships on the jump point.   The new Dregluk ships are code named Peregrine, in honor of their speed. 

Three hours later the two Lake class ASM frigates assigned to Admiral Chan’s task group opened fire, each launching its twenty-five Thunderbolt IV ASM’s at its assigned cruiser.   Just over an hour later the ASM’s intercepted their targets.  One of the cruisers managed to shoot down four of the incoming missiles, the other two.  The rest hit their targets causing multiple hull breaches, but the tough ships continued on towards the jump point.  Neither suffered the massive internal explosions that crippled and destroyed so many Dregluk ships in the past.  Admiral Chan dispatched the two Lake class frigates back to the Houston system.  Reinforcements were already on their way, but it would take many hours before they could arrive.  Fortunately, the missile boats dispatched from the other jump point in the Houston system would arrive before the Dregluk cruisers, by several hours.  With reinforcements on their way, there was no sense in suffering through a missile attack that his HuK’s wouldn’t be able to respond to.  It would take the cruisers eleven hours and forty-five minutes to reach the jump point at their current rate of speed.  Admiral Chan intended to return before they could reach the jump point. 

Nine hours and fifteen minutes later Admiral Chan and his ships jumped back into the Austin system, accompanied by the twenty-two missile boats of the 1st and 2nd Missile Groups.  As expected, the two Dregluk cruisers were just 44 mkm’s away and closing on the jump point.  In addition, the five very fast Dregluk ships last seen retreating from the jump point were now 130 mkm’s away and closing.  Shortly after the human ships jumped in the faster Dregluk ships turned away from the jump point, but the cruisers continued to close. 

It took over two minutes before one of the scout missile boats managed to get its active sensors online and for the first time the Republic ships got a look at the five very fast Dregluk ships approaching their location.  They were all destroyer sized (9,550 tons), making them formidable opponents that could chase down any Republican warship in existence. 

The first two missile boats to recover from transit effects each launched their Bludgeon IV missiles at the approaching cruisers, as the nearest and most immediate threats.  With those missiles away, the missile boats begin launching against the retreating Peregrine class DD’s as well. 

Approximately sixteen minutes later forty-two Dregluk ASM’s were detected closing on the fleet.  Brooklyn class anti-missile frigates began launching Aegis VI AMM’s at the incoming missiles as the fleet prepared for attack.  The fleet’s own missiles were closing on the Dregluk cruisers, but still needed four and a half minutes to reach the fleeing cruisers.  Soon a second salvo of forty-two missiles was detected, and another behind that.  Missiles continued to spill from the defensive frigates.  The Aegis VI’s stopped nearly every incoming missile short of the fleet, with only a relative few penetrating the AMM shield.  The few penetrators were stopped by the HuK’s gauss cannons.  As always, though, the weakness of the Brooklyn class frigates is in their small magazine capacity.  The human fleet had to bore their way through nine salvoes from the cruisers before their missiles finally caught the retreating Dregluk ships.  One of the cruisers stops one of the Bludgeon missiles before it hits, but is overwhelmed by the remaining five, suffering several internal explosions and is left a drifting wreck.  The other cruiser stops five of the six Bludgeon missiles targeted on it, and apparently suffers no additional damage from the last missile.   

In response, a missile boat launches another six ASM’s at the fleeing cruiser.  Having lost their targeting lock, half of the incoming Dregluk missiles self-destruct before they reach the human ships.  The attack peters out shortly thereafter.  Twenty-four minutes later the second salvo of Bludgeon ASM’s reaches the last Dregluk cruiser and wipes it from space.  A few minutes after that the ASM’s reach the running Dregluk Peregrines and their armor proves to be too thin for them to withstand more than a few hits by the big human missiles.  All five are destroyed in short order. 

With the immediate threat gone, Admiral Chan dispatches the 1st LR Missile Group back to the new base in the Houston system to rearm, and requests reinforcements for his squadron. 

The two Lake class frigates that expended their missiles at the two Dregluk cruisers are the first to arrive at the new base in the Houston system, and they immediately enter two of the four Fleet Docks orbiting the base so that their box launchers can be refurbished and rearmed. 

Several hours later the Kit Carson joined Admiral Chan’s squadron on the jump point in the Austin system, and its exquisitely sensitive sensors picked up several new Dregluk populations scattered around the system along with five Dregluk ships in the inner system.  Four of the new contacts were unknown types, with thermal signatures significantly higher than even a Dregluk battleships, while the fifth contact was a Mammoth class battleship.  The new contacts are heading across the system, not towards the human ships, and, disturbingly, the unknown ship types are moving at the standard Dregluk warship speed of 4,607 km/s. 

November 29, 2142, 0507 hours, Houston System
The 1st LR Missile Group arrives over the new base to find the Fleet Docks ready to receive them.  The missile boats immediately enter the Docks to rearm their box launchers.  In a few hours their magazines were reloaded and their box launchers were serviced and ready for their next engagement.  Rearmed, the 1st LR Missile Group set out for the jump point to Austin. 

On board her command ship, Admiral Wallace is ecstatic about the discovery in the Austin system.  The population on the moon of the innermost planet is huge, and the planet itself has an environment that is perfect for the known characteristics of the Dregluk, meaning that this population is either their home world or is a very old colony that has been terraformed to be suited for their race.  For a brief period, Admiral Wallace and her senior officers debate changing their operational plan to attack the potential Dregluk home world directly, but Admiral Wallace decides to stick with the current plan and secure Houston first.  This will allow her fleet’s scouts to examine the Austin system more closely, and allow her to plan a future attack with better information.   

November 30, 2142, Houston System, Dregluk Bravo
The bombardment from the Essex had completely destroyed the Dregluk ground defenses, which were estimated to have been present at battalion strength.  Radiation from the bombardment lingered, and would for some time, along with the dust that had been thrown into the atmosphere, although both were present at levels far below those that still prevailed on Earth.  The Marines had little to do aside from securing the Dregluk outpost, which was discovered to be a mining facility with nineteen surviving civilian mining units. 

With the outpost secure, Admiral Wallace ordered the Marines to board their transports.  Two battalions would be left behind to secure the outpost, while the remainder would set out for Dregluk Alpha. 

At 0952 hours on the 30th, alarms began sounding on Admiral Chan’s ships in the Austin system.  To the shock of Admiral Chan’s officers, a massive force of small Dregluk ships had appeared just 138 mkm’s from their position at the jump point.   This force, composed of forty-nine ships, appeared on the Carson’s thermal sensors only, in spite of the fact that they were well within active sensor range of the ships on the jump point.  Information continued to come in as Admiral Chan organized his force to meet this threat.  The new contacts were moving towards the human force at 10,525 km/s, and were either cloaked against active sensors or were too small for the human ship’s sensors to acquire them.  Admiral Chan decided to allow the Dregluk ships to close, in the hopes that his sensor and fire control systems would acquire them before the Dregluk ships were able to launch whatever weapons they carried. 

The minutes passed slowly as the human ships watched the Dregluk fleet approach.  As the first hour passed with the Dregluk ships getting closer and closer and no sign that the human sensors were going to be able to acquire them, Admiral Chan began wondering if he should retreat through the jump point and engage them when they came through.  As tempting as that was, though, he was reluctant to give up his position in the Austin system.  If the Dregluk ships declined to advance through the jump point and instead invested this side, his fleet would pay a steep price to force their way back into the Austin system.  He decided to wait, at least until the Dregluk ships launched a weapon.  If they were beam-armed, then his anti-missile sensors would acquire them long before they got into range of their own weapons, although how his fire control systems would handle the tiny ships was completely different issue. 

When the incoming Dregluk ships reached 38 mkm’s they activated their sensors, which appeared to have a range of 33.6 mkm’s.  When the Dregluk force reached 34 mkm’s it split, leaving twelve ships behind, stationary, while the remainder continued on towards the human force. 

At 1250 hours, the human force on the jump point was confronted by a massive wave of missiles which appeared at 4.7 mkm’s from the jump point.  The missile wave was composed of just over seven hundred missiles.  Admiral Chan ordered the Scout Carson to jump out as his anti-missile frigates, reinforced by two newly arrived frigates, began preparing to defend the fleet.  Unfortunately, the incoming missile wave is composed of missiles just as small as the ships that carried them, and as the incoming missile wave reaches 3 mkm’s from the fleet without his defensive ships being able to launch, Admiral Chan realizes he is in trouble.  At this point he orders the rest of his fleet to transit out to escape from the approaching missile wave.  Unfortunately, it is going to take some time to get his fleet organized and through the jump point, so it is a race.  When the Carson jumped out, the remaining fleet units lost contact with the incoming missile wave, but Admiral Chan knew it was still there.  One by one the human ships slipped away, with the last being the missile boats of the 2nd LR Missile Group.  Their crews let out a sigh of relief when they finally jumped out.  They couldn’t see the Dregluk missiles racing towards their thin hulls, but they knew that they were there. 

Thirteen minutes after the last ship successfully retreated to the Houston system, Admiral Chan ordered his fleet to jump back to the Austin system.  His warships found the area around the jump point clear, but the active sensors belonging to six of the tiny Dregluk ships were hovering about 36 mkm’s out.  With the immediate area around the jump point clear Admiral Chan sent one of the frigates back to Houston to bring the Carson forward.  When the Carson arrived, it confirmed that the rest of the small Dregluk ships were sitting 36 mkm’s away from the jump point.  Admiral Chan had no interest in sending his HuK’s out to engage the small Dregluk ships, as they were faster than even his HuK’s and, if they had any missiles left, would be able to overwhelm his HuK’s before they could close.  He decided to sit on the jump point and wait. 

Fifteen minutes later seventeen missiles appeared on the Carson’s thermal sensors.  The AMM frigates were finally able to lock up the incoming missiles at 1.6 mkm’s and Aegis VI’s began spilling into space.  All of the incoming missiles were stopped short of the fleet, and by that time all of the Dregluk ships were retreating, although some only retreated a few mkm’s and then halted.

Just over three hours later another wave of missiles was detected inbound.  Soon there were several waves of missiles in-bound, although none were as big as the one that chased them out of the system before.  Still, Admiral Chan had no interest in suffering through a missile attack to which he could not reply.  Even as Aegis VI’s raced away from his AMM frigates, he ordered the Kit Carson and the LR Missile Group to jump back to Houston.  By the time the scout and the missile boats retreated from the system, the incoming missiles had been dealt with.  Admiral Chan then ordered his squadron to jump out.  They would mount a defense on the far side of the jump point.  If the small Dregluk ships tried to jump into the system they would appear on top of his ships sitting at the jump point, and his ships would be able to target them with their missiles and lasers.  And that would be the end of the Dregluk attack ships. 

Sol System, Earth
Admiral Wallace’s reports concerning the new Dregluk attack ships which were too small to be targeted by any of the fleet’s weapons systems, had made their way back to the Admiralty.  A crash research program was initiated to develop sensors and targeting systems capable of dealing with the tiny ships. 

Meanwhile, in the Houston system…
1st Fleet Disposition:
December 1, 2142, Houston System
Republican Fleet Dispositions, Houston System
1st Fleet, CO Admiral Freya Wallace
Task Group 1.1, CO Captain Harvey Webster
Stationed at the Forward Base, Moon #2, Planet #4
Planet class BC: Mars
Essex class Assault Ships: Ark Royal, Prince of Wales, Yamato
Lake class ASM Frigates: Malawi, Sacramento, Singapore, Tanganyika, Vladivostok
Brooklyn class AMM Frigates: Lima, Seoul, Shanghai, Tokyo

Task Group 1.2, CO Rear Admiral Robert Chan
Stationed at the jump point to the Austin System
Enterprise class Hunter-Killer: Assistance, Endeavor, Intrepid
Lake class ASM Frigates: Baikai, Erie, Huron, Ladoga
Brooklyn class AMM Frigates: Boston, Cairo, Chongqing

1st Fleet Scouting Group, CO Lt. Commander David Faulkner
Stationed at the Forward Base, Moon #2, Planet #4
Far Seer class Scout Kit Carson

1st LR Missile Group, CO Captain George Franklin
Stationed at the Forward Base, Moon #2, Planet #4
10xMissile Boat
1xMissile Boat Leader

2nd LR Missile Group, CO Lt. Commander Conor Turner
Stationed at the jump point to the Austin System
10xMissile Boat
1xMissile Boat Leader

3rd LR Missile Group, CO Lt. Commander Kai Hayward
Stationed at the jump point to the Baton Rouge System
9xMissile Boat
1xMissile Boat Leader

Troop Transport Group
Stationed at the Forward Base, Moon #2, Planet #4
2xAssault Transport class: Normandy, Anzio
Embarked: 10 battalions Marine Raiders, 3 Brigade HQ’s, 4 replacement battalions

1st Fleet, Forward Deployed Pods
Stationed at the Forward Base, Moon #2, Planet #4
16xASM Pod
6xAAM Pod
2xSensor Pod

Admiral Wallace peered at the system display, satisfied with the disposition of her fleet, at least for now.  Both jump points into the system were covered, and her transports were loaded and ready to commence the operation against Dregluk Alpha.  There was one further detail that had to be taken care of, though.  She left the flag bridge and walked the short distance to her office.  Once there she activated her desk display and sent a comm request to Captain Franklin, commanding officer of the 1st Long Range Missile Group, specifying that she wanted a private conversation.  A few seconds later the aristocratic features of the missile boat commander appeared on her screen.  As requested, he was in his quarters, and she could see that he was alone.  “Admiral.” 

“George, we are nearly ready to start operations against Dregluk Alpha.  I have decided to assign your group to bombard the planet to eliminate any ground defenses.”

Captain Franklin looked surprised.  “I had assumed you’d give that honor to one of the assault ships.”

Admiral Wallace started to relax.  She had feared that some of her officers would prove to be reticent to follow her orders to bombard the Dregluk populations, following the example set by former Consul Foster.  Franklin obviously wouldn’t be a problem.  “No, that would be a mistake.  I had to send the Essex all the way back to Bastion to rearm, she’s too big for one of the Docks.  I don’t want to have to send any of the others back.  Fortunately, your boats can fit in the Docks just fine.”

“We’ll be honored to strike back at those bastards, Ma’am.  There will be some happy boys and girls on my boats when they hear this order!”

“That’s not all, Captain.  Before we break orbit, I want you to report to the Munitions Depot at the Forward Base and draw munitions for your boats.”

“But Ma’am, we’ve…”

Admiral Wallace waived his objection away.  “Yes, I know your boats are loaded.  I want you to land fifty of your Bludgeon ASM’s and replace them with SM-2 PLAM’s.”

Captain Franklin frowned in thought.  “SM-2, now where have I heard that?  SM-2?  Wait, Special Munitions?  So, the rumors are true?”

Admiral Wallace watched Captain Franklin reason it through, curious to see how he would come down on the issue.  “Yes, the rumors are true.  Some time ago, the War Faction in the Senate authorized the development of special munitions to bombard Dregluk planetary populations.  These munitions are designed to limit collateral damage, but will release immense amounts of radiation into the target planet’s atmosphere and environment.  This project remained a Senatorial Secret, until the elevation of Consul Young.  She has authorized their use in general, with authorization delegated to the senior-most fleet officer on scene.  She has specifically authorized their use against Dregluk Alpha.  I will have my staff forward these authorizations to you.”

Captain Franklin stood from behind his desk and saluted, a big grin on his face.  “Orders received and understood, Ma’am.  We will begin loading immediately.”

“Very well.  Report your loading status in one hour.  I will then give you authorization to launch.  Admiral Wallace out.”  She closed the comm window and sat back in her chair in satisfaction.  The first step in the tidal wave of death that she intended to bring to the Dregluk was almost ready. 

One hour later, everything was in readiness.  Admiral Wallace, on her flag bridge, opened a communications window to Captain Franklin.  “Captain Franklin, what is your status?”

Captain Franklin’s smiling visage appeared on the display at the head of the command deck.  “All munitions are loaded.  My squadron is ready to launch at your command.”

The flag bridge had fallen silent as the import of the Captain’s words were absorbed by the crew.  “Very well, Captain, you may open fire using targeting plan Alpha-1.”

Captain Franklin’s eyes flickered down to his display, where he saw targeting plan Alpha-1 appear as it was transmitted by the Admiral’s staff.  His gaze tightened when he saw the details, but then he smiled again.  “The missiles are on their way, Admiral.”  The comm link flickered off.  Seconds later fifty SM-2 PLAM’s sped away from the missile boats, which then turned towards the Fleet Dock’s to rearm.  Cheering broke out across the fleet as the missiles sped away towards the third planet.  They would take two and a half hours to reach their targets.  As they sped away, the fleet, including the two troop transports, left orbit and began following the missiles.  It would take them much longer to arrive, of course. 

Two and a half hours later the fifty missiles arrived over the Dregluk colony on the third planet.  Without hesitation or opposition, the missiles plunged towards the planet.  At the last second, they separated, each targeting a Dregluk population center.  Brilliant explosions dotted the face of the planet.  The explosions were comparatively small, compared to ship-busters, but each warhead was jacketed in materials that reduced the explosive effect but magnified the radiation produced.  Thirty million Dregluk died immediately.  When the human transport ships arrived, they found the Dregluk colony devastated and incapable of any resistance.  Admiral Wallace decided to land two battalions of Marines to secure the colony.  The remainder of the fleet returned to Forward Base with the troop transports. 

December 3, 2142, Houston System
Marines were in place on both former Dregluk colonies, and the troop transports were headed back to Bastion to load more construction units and garrison troops.  In addition, Naval Intelligence and Senatorial Investigators had been deployed to Dregluk Alpha to investigate the Dregluk colony and determine what its purpose was.  Admiral Wallace was content as the system was secure, and was beginning to focus on the complexities involved in keeping her fleet functioning so far from home. 

At 1429 hours, two Dregluk Vulture class DD’s jumped into the system from the Austin system.  Admiral Chan’s force had been waiting for them on the jump point and swung into action immediately.   Admiral Chan’s three HuK’s turned towards the intruders and their lasers swiveled to focus on the Dregluk ships as the Baikai and the Erie began setting up tracking solutions for their missiles.

The three veteran HuK’s were fast off the mark, firing almost as soon as the Dregluk DD’s appeared, heavily scoring the armor of the two DD’s.  The Eire was right there with them as well, launching fifteen Thunderbolt IV missiles seconds after the Dregluk ships entered the system.  The missiles savaged the Dregluk DD, but didn’t destroy it, so the Eire’s CO ordered a second salvo.  The Eire got her second salvo off before the HuK’s recharged their lasers or the BaiKai managed to launch its first salvo.       

The second salvo of missiles from the Eire ripped the Dregluk destroyer apart, leaving the wreckage drifting off of the jump point.  The HuK’s, anticipating the Eire’s second salvo, had shifted their targeting to the second destroyer, and their 200mm lasers again scored her armor.  The Baikai’s crew was still trying to get their salvo into space. 

The Dregluk DD was moving away from the jump point as fast as it could, leaving the human ships, which hadn’t managed to get their engines online, behind.  The HuK’s spinal lasers lashed out at the receding destroyer, causing several spurts of atmosphere, and then the Baikai launched fifteen Thunderbolt IV ASM’s at the Dregluk ship.  The ASM’s savaged the fleeing ship, causing it falter and reduce its speed.  By then the HuK’s had gotten underway, and they were much faster than the Dregluk ship.  They caught up almost immediately and punched holes in its armor with their lasers over and over again, until it was a drifting hulk.  Admiral Chan dispatches the Baikai and the Erie back to Forward Base to rearm. 

December 8, 2142, Houston
The UNREP ship assigned to support the offensive arrives in the Houston system at 1259 hours and sets out for Forward Base. Once there it will unload 22.5 million liters of fuel at the base and then turn around and return home.  The trip back to the Solar System will take the slow ship over two months.     

December 11, 2142, Houston
The Kit Carson’s relief finally arrives in the Houston system.  The scout Jim Bridger is an upgraded version of the Kit Carson.  While it is every bit as stealthy as the Carson, it is 25% faster, bringing it up to fleet standard speed.  In addition, the CIWS has been removed and replaced with additional engineering space and fuel, giving the ship a longer endurance and range.  Lt. Commander Faulkner is ready to take his ship home.  They have been scouting the Dregluk Imperium’s jump points and systems for almost fifteen months and his crew is ready to get some promised R&R on Mars, the garden-spot of the Solar System.   

December 20, 2142, Houston system, jump point to Austin
Alarms began sounding shrilly on all of the ships at the jump point as four battleships jumped into the system.  Three Mammoth class BB’s, each armed with numerous missile launchers, appeared on the jump point while a single Goliath class BB, equipped with a jump drive and missile launchers, appeared 204,000 kilometers away from the jump point. 

The three HuK’s lashed out at the nearest battleships as their commanders tried to get their engines online.  The Erie and the Huron launched their Thunderbolt IV ASM’s immediately after the BB’s entered, but the crews of the missile boats and the Baikai and Ladoga would take longer to launch. 

The Thunderbolt missiles from the Eire and the Huron punch holes in the massive battleships they were targeted on, and one of the two BB’s suffers an internal explosion and is slowed.  Admiral Chan, seeing the success that the Thunderbolt’s had against the Dregluk BB’s, changes his fire plan to hold the missile boats of the 2nd LR Missile Group in reserve, in case anything else comes through the jump point. 

Ten seconds later the Ladoga and the Baikai get their missiles off, but the missile boats are still struggling to get their missiles away.  Meanwhile, the HuK’s, still stationary on the jump point, score the battleship’s thick armor with their lasers.  Over the next ten seconds two of the Dregluk BB’s are savaged by the Thunderbolt ASM’s, and again one of the BB’s was slowed.  Then, two things happened nearly simultaneously.  The missile boats of the 1st LR Missile Group launched their Bludgeon IV’s at the BB’s, and at least one of the Dregluk ships managed to fire back.  Aegis VI AMM’s began spilling into space in the explosion-wracked area around the jump point.   The Aegis VI’s did their job and protected the Republican ships as the Bludgeon ASM’s ripped into the Dregluk ships.  Two of the massive Mammoth class battleships were wracked by internal explosions and literally fell apart as the missiles pounded them, while the third suffered serious internal damage and was slowed to a crawl.   

The Goliath class BB was next, and it was staggered by the onslaught of Bludgeon ASM’s, while the last remaining Mammoth class BB succumbed to Bludgeon missiles that had lost their original target and had re-acquired it as it staggered away from the first attack.  That left six Bludgeon IV ASM’s that had lost their original target homing in on the Goliath class BB, which was the last ship left in the attack force.   

The HuK’s continued to pursue the last battleship, pounding it with their lasers, as the last six Bludgeon missiles closed in.  The desperate Dregluk ship managed to kill two of the six Bludgeon’s as they closed to point blank range, but then the four missiles wiped the crippled ship out, ending the attack a mere fifty seconds after it started.  Admiral Chan recalled the HuK’s to the jump point, and dispatched his ASM frigates and the 1st LR Missile Group back to Forward Base to rearm.     
 
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Offline Kurt

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Republic: End of 2142
« Reply #68 on: January 14, 2019, 09:02:38 AM »
The United Republic of Earth
December 30, 2142

Earth:
Population: 2.884 Billion (-12%)
Shipyards/Slipways: 6/18
Industrial Facilities (All): 10,508 (-6%)
R&D Labs: 210
Environment: Average Temp -6.46 degrees from normal averages.  Radiation currently causing 18% drop in industrial efficiency. 
Estimated annual population decrease rate is -3.10%.

Earth is currently has a massive worker shortage, caused in part by the continuing population decline from radiation and exacerbated by the Republic’s ongoing efforts to relocate as many people as possible.  The entire fuel refinery industry was shut down years ago, which put off the effects of impending worker shortages, and the transfer of the military shipyards to Mars helped as well.  For most of this past year the Republic has devoted the bulk of its industry on Earth to converting mines to automation to reduce demand for workers in that industry, but due to worker shortages and the ongoing need for construction capacity to be devoted to military efforts progress has been slow.   Planned transfers of industrial complexes to other human populations throughout the Solar System have helped with the worker shortage, but has not eliminated it, especially as population transfers continue.   

Morale on Earth has soared with the continued success of Admiral Wallace’s campaign.     

Luna:
Population: 133.89 million (177% increase)
Mines: 317 (no change)
Automated Mines: 155 (no change)
Financial Centers: 310 (all transferred from Earth this year)
Construction Factories: 60

Luna’s population continues to be bolstered by people trying to escape from the increasingly fervent anti-alien attitudes of the masses on Earth and Mars.  The Lunar colonies were bombarded just as hard as the Earth was, and the Lunar surface is heavily irradiated, meaning that only the most desperate to escape the increasing fervor for war and anti-alien sentiment on Earth relocate to the Moon.   

In the aftermath of his resignation from government, former Consul Foster has moved to the Montes Carpatus colony on the Moon, and has become something of a local hero.   

Mars:
Population: 600.1 million (+36%)
Shipyards/Slipways: 15/56
Maintenance Facilities: 140
Construction Factories: 230 (+2 change)
Ordnance Factories: 343 (+64 change this year)
Financial Centers: 160 (I gamemastered this transfer as there is currently no way to do it in the game)

The largest single employer on Mars continues to be the Republic Naval Yards, employing over fifty-five million Martian residents.  The Martians are fervent supporters of the Republic’s war effort, and almost twenty percent of the Martian population is directly employed by the military or the military-industrial complex.  The bulk of the rest of the population is indirectly involved in the war effort as well. 

Ganymede:
Population: 53.9 million (+120%)
Construction Factories: 233 (123 transferred this year)
Mines: 108 (no change)
Automated Mines: 168 (no change)
Ordnance Factories: 54 (all transferred this year)
Shipyards/Slipways: 2/8

The terraforming fleet continues to significantly increase the average temperature on Ganymede, reducing the colony’s dependence on infrastructure to support its population.   As the terraforming project continues, the Republic’s BuReLoc has shifted its focus from Mars to the Ganymede colony. 

The Republic has begun the process of relocating the civilian shipyards from Earth to Ganymede in an attempt to reduce the worker shortage on Earth.  A third yard is in transit to Ganymede and will arrive in two weeks.  Terraforming is progressing as well, and is projected to be complete in mid to late 2143.  Lunar representatives are already lobbying in the Senate to make their home the next target for terraforming, although there is considerable resistance from competing interests. 

Bastion:
Population: 10.21 million (+81%)
Construction Factories: 38 (All transferred this year)
Maintenance Facilities: 138 (56 transferred in this year)

Bastion is the leading edge of the Republic, and the first line of defense against continued Dregluk depredations.  The entire population is devoted to supporting the fortress complex that is the colony’s reason for existence. 

There is some talk of reassigning the Terraforming ships to Bastion when they complete their efforts at Ganymede, as Bastion already has an oxygen-nitrogen atmosphere and temperate climate.  The atmosphere is too thin to breathe without technological assistance, though. 

Venus:
Automated Mines: 741 (no change)

Wolf-Harrington (Comet):
Automated Mines: 111 (no change)
This mining outpost is slated to be shut down in two years when the last of the resources present on the comet have been mined out. 

Whipple (Comet):
Automated Mines: 50 (no change)

Swift-Tuttle (Comet):
Automated Mines: 25 (no change)

Puck (Moon of Uranus):
This outpost is intended solely as a fuel dump for the refineries working in Uranus orbit.  Currently the fuel dump is empty, as ongoing fleet operations in and around the Washington system have drained all available fuel.  While there are considerable reserves on Earth and Mars, the fuel refineries in orbit over Uranus constitute the Republic’s entire fuel refinery capability as the ground-based refineries on Earth have been shut down due to worker and financial shortages, a situation that is unlikely to change at any point in the near or medium future. 

Philadelphia Research Project:
Located in the Philadelphia system, on the innermost planet, the Project is devoted to unlocking the secrets of the pristine alien city located here.  A xeno-archeology team has been deployed to the planet for some time, but has had little success in investigating the alien structures.  The Senate has sent two audit teams over the last year, in an attempt to determine if the team is being poorly led or is incompetent, or merely needs more support.  Unfortunately, both teams determined that the xeno-archeology team, led by Rear Admiral Isobel Bevan, is operating well under difficult conditions, and will just require more time.  To ensure that the team gets the support it needs, the Senate appointed Thomas Finch as civilian overseer for the project.  Mr. Finch was chief advisor to the Governor of Earth, and has significant education and training in xeno-archeology. 

This lack of progress is frustrating to elements in the Republic’s government that see this planet, with its massive resource deposits a natural colony site for humanity’s first major out-system colony.  Unfortunately, the planet possesses a thick atmosphere over three times as thick as Earth’s, meaning that the terraformers would have to spend several years reducing the atmospheric pressure before humans would be comfortable living there without significant infrastructure. 

System Defense Command
The System Defense Command is based on Earth and has as its primary mission the defense of Earth.  Its secondary mission is the defense of the Solar System, and then thirdly it is concerned with supporting the Fleet’s mission against the Dregluk by maintaining fortifications on Bastion in the Washington system. 

System Defense Command Emplacements
Earth:
Sensor Bases: 2
Anti-Missile Bases (Aegis): 10 (+25% increase)
Anti-missile bases (meson): 20
Anti-ship Bases (Sword): 4
Anti-ship bases (Final Line): 15

Luna:
Anti-missile bases (meson): 3 (200% increase)

Mars:
Sensor Bases: 2
 Anti-Missile Bases (Aegis): 5
Anti-missile bases (meson): 10 (100% increase)
Anti-ship Bases (Sword): 2
Anti-Ship Bases (Final Line): 5

Ganymede:
Sensor Bases: 2
 Anti-Missile Bases (Aegis): 2
Anti-ship bases (Final Line): 4 (100% increase)
Anti-Missile Bases (Meson): 3

Bastion (Washington System):
Sensor Bases: 2
Anti-Missile Bases (Aegis): 3
Anti-Ship Bases (Final Line): 9 (28% increase)
Anti-missile bases (Meson): 28 (280% increase)

In addition to the fixed defenses, the SDC is also responsible for the Listening Posts that now guard all of the approaches to the Solar System.  Currently, there are listening posts in the Boston System, the Chicago System, the New York System, the San Francisco system, the Honolulu system, the Denver system, and the Washington System.  These listening posts are all composed of twenty DSTS’s, with the exception of the Washington listening post, which is composed of twenty-five, and the Honolulu system, which is composed of seven.  These listening posts watch for alien incursions, and if any alien ships are detected the incursions will be reported to a Fleet picket ship standing by at the jump point to the Solar System. 

To date, the only system adjacent to the solar System without listening posts is the Los Angeles system.  The Los Angeles system is problematic as it contains no planetary bodies to support a listening post, which means that picketing that system will be a Fleet responsibility.  Currently the Fleet has assigned a picket ship and a Fleet Scout to the system as an early warning tripwire. 

The Republican Fleet
As more and more support vessels come online, the Fleet’s construction priorities are shifting to new-tech combat units such as the Fast Frigate and the new Star class Battleship. 

Republic Home Fleet, CO Rear Admiral Isobel Gilbert
Home Port: Mars
Planet class BCC: Jupiter, Venus
Brooklyn class AMM Frigates: Birmingham, Karachi, Mumbai
Lake class ASM Frigates: Balkhash, Victoria, Vostok, Winnipeg
16xLR Missile Boat
2xLR Missile Boat Leader
10xMissile Boat

Home Fleet Support Group
UNREP class Fuel Ship: UNREP-005
Hero class Fleet Dock: Sergio Ortega-Cortez, Surayya Medved

Home Fleet Pod Reserve (Earth)
34xMissile Pod
10xAMM Pod
7xSensor Pod

Home Fleet, Scout Group
Far Seer class Scout: Thomas Tobin, James Beckwourth

1st Fleet, CO Rear Admiral Freya Wallace
Home Port: Bastion, Washington System
Planet class BC: Mars
Essex class Assault Ship: Essex, Ark Royal, Prince of Wales, Yamato
Enterprise class Hunter-Killer: Assistance, Endeavor, Intrepid
Brooklyn class AMM Frigate: Lima, Seoul, Shanghai, Tokyo, Boston, Cairo, Chongqing, Delhi, Lagos
Lake class ASM Frigate: Sacramento, Singapore, Tanganyika, Vladivostok, Baikai, Eire, Huron, Ladoga, Michigan, Nairobi, Ontario
37xLR Missile Boat
4xLR Missile Boat Leader
19xMissile Boat

1st Fleet Support Group
Hero class Fleet Dock: Adela Sachs, Deborah Hasek, Judith Cole, Michael Bromley
Fleet Support class Munitions Ships: FS-001, FS-002, FS-003, FS-004, FS-005, FS-006
UNREP class Fuel Ship: UNREP-004

1st Fleet, Pod Group
21xASM Pod
12xAMM Pod
4xSensor Pod

1st Fleet, Scout Group
Far Seer class Scout: Kit Carson, Jim Bridger

Survey Command
Home Port: Mars
Administratively under Home Fleet
1xJump Survey Scout
3xGeoSurvey Ships

1st Survey Group
3xJump Scout
3xGeo Survey Ship

Survey Reserve (Earth)
2xJump Scout

System Defense Force
The System Defense Force is nominally under the Navy in terms of organization, but much like the Fleet Marines, it is a separate organization within the larger organization.  The System Defense Force’s mission is to defend the Solar System from all threats.  To this end it has the following forces:

Sol System (stationed at Mars, or defending various jump points into Sol):
Saratoga R1 Monitor: Saratoga, Waterloo, Stalingrad, Tours, Hastings, Metaurus, Cajamarca

Washington System (stationed at Bastion or defending various jump points):
Saratoga r1 Monitor: Masada, Antietam, Huai Hai, Marathon

System Defense Force (Earth):
Interceptor Group #1: 10xFalcon r4 Interceptor, 1xFalcon r4Sc
Interceptor Group #2: 10xFalcon r4 Interceptor, 1xFalcon r4Sc
Interceptor Group #3: 10xFalcon r4 Interceptor, 1xFalcon r4Sc
Interceptor Group #4: 10xFalcon r4 Interceptor, 1xFalcon r4Sc

 Ships currently under construction (Mars):
4xStar class BB
1xEssex r2 Assault Ship
2xRefit Essex to Essex r2 Assault Ship
3xPlanet r2 class battlecruisers
2xDefender class Destroyers
1xBrooklyn(F) class Fast AMM Frigate
14xMB r3(LR)
5xPod (AMM)
9xPod (ASM)
1xHero class Fleet Docks
2xFar Seer r2 class Scout
1xRefit Far Seer to Far Seer r2 class Scout
1xFleet Support (Munitions)
3xDeep Space Survey ships
3xGeo Surveyors
1xConstruction Ship
« Last Edit: January 14, 2019, 02:12:16 PM by Kurt »
 
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Offline Kurt

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Republic: Preliminary Report
« Reply #69 on: January 15, 2019, 08:59:44 AM »
Preliminary Report on Dregluk possessions seized in the Houston system
Release limited to Senate Committee on Dregluk Affairs
Compiled by Senatorial Investigations, Dregluk Branch

Dregluk Alpha
This Dregluk colony is located on the third planet of the Houston system.  The planet has a diameter of 4,800 kilometers, approximately the size of Mercury.  The planet possesses only a trace atmosphere with an effective pressure of 0, but has a congenial average temperature of 4 degrees.  The planet is rated at a colony cost of 1.8 on the standard BuReLoc scale for Humans, and, interestingly, is also 1.8 for Dregluk.  The environment necessitates the presence of large amounts of infrastructure to provide atmosphere and food for any significant population. 

Orbital sensor analysis of the Dregluk colony prior to the bombardment and invasion established that the colony was composed of approximately 110 million Dregluk.  There was little to no industrialization of the planet detected.  Orbital surveys conducted by Republican forces prior to the bombardment were only able to identify several deep space tracking stations and a mass driver installation, leaving the intended purpose of this colony unknown.

Admiral Wallace’s forces employed SM-2 PLAM’s to destroy the planetary defenses prior to invasion.  These special weapons directly killed approximately 30 million Dregluk during the bombardment, and caused massive radiation poisoning of the environment.  This radiation poisoning is approximately four times worse than the current radiation levels on Earth, and it is estimated that this level of contamination will cause significant issues for the Dregluk population moving forward.   Based on experience with Earth’s contamination, it is estimated that the Dregluk population will suffer from an approximate 15.33% negative population growth in the coming year.  In addition, the dust thrown up into the atmosphere by the bombardment is expected to cause a global cooling of 2.77 degrees, although, given the generally congenial temperature of the planet this is not considered significant. 

As a result of the bombardment, the Dregluk colony was incapable of resisting Admiral Wallace’s Marine force.  The Dregluk colony effectively surrendered as soon as the Marines landed, however, it is not clear what if any civil organization they had.  There are no surviving leaders of any type, civil, military, or industrial.  While undoubtedly many died in the bombardment, it is unlikely that the bombardment killed every single leader, meaning it is likely that they suicided prior to the arrival of Admiral Wallace’s Marines.  This is consistent with every group of Dregluk taken captive since the start of the war. 

The initial survey of the colony’s resources and capabilities has raised more questions than it has answered.  There are currently no mines, construction factories, or indeed any sort of facilities that would justify emplacing a colony here at great expense (given the massive amount of infrastructure needed to support a population in excess of 100 million).  There are no mines present, and no indication that there ever were any mines.  Neither is there any trans-Newtonian resources present, such as there would be if this location was being used as a trans-shipment point for mines elsewhere in the system.  In short, there exists no evidence as to the purpose of this colony, and it is unlikely that such evidence was eliminated completely and totally either by the missing Dregluk leaders or by the bombardment. 

There is an additional interesting fact that was discovered as this preliminary report was being put together.  Pre-attack orbital surveys established that the Dregluk population was approximately 110 million.  There is only enough infrastructure currently present on the planet to support 102 million.  While it is likely that some of the infrastructure was destroyed by the bombardment, there are clear signs that the population had outgrown the infrastructure on the planet and indeed that it had a negative growth rate due to overcrowding. 

Both our team and the Naval Intelligence Team will continue to work on Dregluk Alpha, and attempt to gain insight into the reasoning of the Dregluk Imperium for placing this colony. 

Dregluk Bravo
This Dregluk outpost is located on the fourth planet of the Houston system.  The planet has a diameter of 15,000 kilometers, approximately 17% larger than Earth.   In spite of this the planet’s gravity is only slightly higher than Earth’s.  The planet possesses an oxygen-nitrogen atmosphere with a pressure of 1.01, but is much colder than Earth with an average temperature of -62.6 degrees.  The planet is rated at a colony cost of 1.97 on the standard BuReLoc scale for Humans, largely due to the temperature.  The planet is rated at a colony cost of 3.66 for the Dregluk, both because of the temperature and because the atmosphere has too much oxygen. 

Orbital surveys of the outpost prior to bombardment and invasion revealed that the Dregluk had a mining outpost here, with twenty-two mining complexes similar to our civilian mining facilities.  There was no infrastructure or population, aside from limited caretakers for the facilities.  There was a single battalion of Dregluk infantry deployed to this planet, presumably to secure the mining facilities. 

Admiral Wallace’s pre-invasion bombardment was targeted on the Dregluk battalion, which was completely destroyed.  In addition, the bombardment destroyed two of the mining facilities.  Admiral Wallace’s Marines secured the mining facilities, and a stockpile of approximately 8,000 standard units of TN resources. 
« Last Edit: January 15, 2019, 03:05:48 PM by Kurt »
 
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Republic: Confidential Report
« Reply #70 on: January 16, 2019, 10:36:24 AM »
Confidential
Eyes only: Consul
From: Admiral Freya Wallace, 1st Fleet
Forward Base, Houston System

Consul, both Dregluk Alpha and Dregluk Bravo are secure.  My fleet is firmly in control of this system, and will we will be able to continue to control this system for some time.  However, I anticipate encountering considerable difficulties in maintaining my fleet in such a forward position in the near future.  My fleet has been deployed for approximately ten weeks.  This is not a problem for the larger ships in the Fleet, however, for the frigates this will become a significant issue in a short period of time.  The frigates make up a considerable portion of my firepower, both offensive and defensive, and I will have to start dispatching them back to Bastion in rotation for overhauls and crew R&R.  This will continue until we establish a forward maintenance base in this system.  This will weaken my fleet, making an attack on the major Dregluk population in the Austin system problematic. 

As you know, I had proposed setting up a maintenance base at the Forward Base during the planning of this operation.  Unfortunately, I was overruled by the Consul and Admiral Law, largely due to the associated costs.  I was informed that the necessary maintenance facilities would have to be constructed, and that cargo capacity would have to be diverted to carry both the maintenance facilities and the infrastructure necessary to establish a colony here.  Worse, BuReLoc colony transports would have to be diverted as well, removing them from their current assignment of relocating Earth’s population to safer environments. 

While I understand that some of these conditions have not changed, I believe that you should re-examine this decision in light of the resources discovered here in the Houston system.  Specifically, I’d like to call your attention to the large stockpile of infrastructure captured on Houston-A III, otherwise known as Dregluk Alpha.  These infrastructure units could be relocated from Dregluk Alpha to Forward Base in a relatively short period of time, if sufficient cargo assets are deployed to this system.  This would eliminate the need to haul the infrastructure from the Solar System to Houston.  If construction begins on the maintenance facilities while the cargo assets are relocating the infrastructure, then, in a relatively short amount of time we will have the capability to maintain my fleet here, in this system, which would give us the unparalleled capability to continue to prosecute the war against the Dregluk. 

This proposed relocation of the infrastructure would have the added benefit of inducing a rapid reduction in the Dregluk population on the planet without further action on our part.  There is considerable evidence of the Dregluk Imperium’s mismanagement of the colony prior to our arrival, and this severe negative growth rate can be explained to the more sensitive elements of our population as a consequence of Dregluk mismanagement rather than our actions, if necessary. 

Rear Admiral (Upper) Freya Wallace
 
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Republic: Jan-Feb 2143
« Reply #71 on: January 17, 2019, 09:09:25 AM »
January 6, 2143, Houston System, Jump Point to Austin
A Dregluk Mammoth class battleship appears on the jump point.  Four missile boats from the 1st LR Missile Group launch their Bludgeon IV ASM’s almost as soon as the battleship materializes in the system.  The BB shoots down three incoming ASM’s with its CIW’s, but then dies under a deluge of massive explosions. 

The four missile boats that expended their missile boxes set out for Forward Base to be rearmed by the Fleet Docks waiting there.  This will require most of the remaining Bludgeon IV’s in the munition depot at Forward Base.  Fortunately, there is a squadron of munitions ships two days out with their magazines packed with missiles to resupply the base. 

January 11, 2143, Earth
Consul Young announces that she has awarded Rear Admiral Wallace a second Victory Medal for her actions in the Houston system.  In addition, Consul Foster announces that the Admiralty has decided to promote Admiral Wallace to Vice Admiral, making her one of the highest ranked people in the Navy.   

In other news, the Fast Cargo Group is dispatched to the Houston system with orders to report to Admiral Wallace for duties in that system. 

Meanwhile, in the Houston System…
A Buzzard class DD appears on the jump point to the Austin system.  Two missile boats launch their missiles shortly thereafter, completely destroying the Dregluk DD.

January 12, 2143, Sol
Development is complete on the Raptor ASUM.  This new anti-small craft missile has an incredible speed of 100,000 km/s and a range of 51.7 mkm’s.  The missile has a somewhat smaller warhead to make room for the much larger engines needed to give the missile its incredible speed.  The missile is put into construction immediately. 

January 16, 2143, Houston
A Buzzard class DD appears on the jump point to Austin.  Two missile boats launch fifteen seconds after it enters, wiping it out.

January 21, 2143, Houston
The Advanced Cargo Group arrives in the Houston system.  Admiral Wallace orders them to begin relocating the infrastructure from Dregluk Alpha to Forward Base. 

February 30, 2143, Earth
The Advanced Colony Fleet loads 1.2 million colonists from Earth’s most deadly areas and then sets out for the jump point to the Washington system.  They are bound for the Houston system, a twenty-day trip to a new colony where they will be integral in setting up a new maintenance base for the navy. 

Late in the day a Mammoth class BB jumps into the Houston system.  Four missile boats launch their missiles fifteen seconds after the battleship appeared.  The Bludgeon ASM’s hit the Dregluk ship, causing a series of internal explosions, including two massive ones, that wrecked the big ship.   

 
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Republic: Senatorial Report
« Reply #72 on: January 19, 2019, 06:22:50 PM »
February 23, 2143
From: Amos Trachtman
Senior Investigator, Senate Investigatory Team, Houston System

To: Anika Avasarala
Senator, Senior Member, Dregluk Affairs Committee

Classified: Top Secret, Need to Know

Senator, you have asked for my unfiltered impressions of the situation on Dregluk Alpha.  That is easy enough; they are horrible.  The planet was subjected to a concentrated bombardment by radiation-enhanced weapons, devastating the environment and causing a much more serious radiation situation than that faced by Earth during the worst of the Bombardment.  Most of us at the time saw this as nothing more than a long-delayed payback to the same Dregluk that had despoiled Earth.  No one feels that way now. 

Once the bombardment was complete, Admiral Wallace invested the planet with the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Marine Raider Brigades.  We all expected fanatical resistance, given the way the Dregluk fight in space, but that is not what the Marines found.  I have spoken with several Marine small unit leaders in the time since the first drop, and what they found when they arrived at the remaining Dregluk population centers was abject surrender.  It was puzzling, to say the least, given their prior dogged determination exhibited in every naval encounter. 

During the next phase of the occupation, the Marines were replaced by garrison troops.  This changeover was publicly reported.  The occupation was justified to the public, which had been heavily in favor of orbital elimination of the Dregluk population, as necessary for military intelligence purposes.  Several news teams were allowed to land on Dregluk Alpha and document the continuing radiation damage and the Dregluk population’s attempts to deal with the damage.  The news teams visit was carefully managed by Naval Intelligence and Fleet Public Affairs, in order to maximize the beneficial effects that the bombardment of the Dregluk population would have on the citizens of the Republic. 

After the news teams left Dregluk Alpha, Admiral Wallace ordered the transfer of the infrastructure that was keeping the Dregluk population alive to the new location for the Maintenance Base intended to support the continued operation of the Fleet.  I believe the intention of this plan, as developed by Admiral Wallace and approved by the Consul’s Office and the Senate Committee on Dregluk Affairs, was to put the Dregluk population in an untenable situation, inevitably forcing them to rebel against the occupation forces.  Admiral Wallace would then re-deploy the Marines to Dregluk Alpha and publicly report that the infrastructure keeping the Dregluk alive had failed as a result of the fighting that the Dregluk themselves had instigated.  After that the Dregluk population would die off quickly due to radiation and a lack of necessary infrastructure. 

In some ways this plan has been a success.  Between the radiation and the lack of infrastructure, the current estimated annual population growth rate on Dregluk Alpha is -37%, and the population has already dropped precipitously since the bombardment from a pre-bombardment high of 110 million to a current estimated total of 66 million and dropping.  However, the attempt to stimulate the Dregluk population to open rebellion has failed, completely.  There have been little to no signs of unrest or open resistance since the occupation, and indeed the Dregluk population did not oppose the landings and occupation by the Marines in any way.   

After receiving your request for additional information, I traveled to Dregluk Alpha myself, to gather first-hand impressions.  My impressions must be considered suspect, as the Dregluk are alien, and are reacting in an alien way, and I am filtering my understanding of these reactions through my perceptions, which are based in a human way of seeing the universe.  Having said that, I will continue.  Upon arrival on Dregluk Alpha I realized that something is very, very wrong.  I cannot imagine any human civilization or city which, having been subjected to the things that we have subjected the Dregluk to, would not have risen against their occupiers.  We are removing their very means of living by taking their infrastructure.  This planet is no more hospitable to them than it is us, and without specialized machinery to create and purify their air, water, and food they will die, just as we would.  And yet, even as they watch our freighters haul away their infrastructure, they do nothing.  Indeed, they have done little to mitigate the radiation poisoning that is worsening their position every day.

I, as nearly everyone alive today can, can remember the days after the initial bombardment of Earth when there was a public upswelling of volunteerism and the formation of grass-roots organizations to reclaim areas devastated by the Bombardment.  Everyone had lost someone, and everyone threw themselves into the reclamation of Earth or the defense efforts to ensure that it didn’t happen again.  Eventually the Provisional Government began organizing those efforts and, after the first year the Provisional Government consolidated those efforts into a world-wide recovery and reclamation effort, but it started as many different local efforts generated by a groundswell of individuals taking action based on what they thought needed to be done.  That is most definitely not happening here.  The Dregluk population can be best described as lethargic.  They have taken very little action to improve their circumstances or mitigate the effects of the bombardment.  It is true that there is little that they could do to improve their circumstances at this late date, however, I cannot imagine a human population that would have allowed itself to be put into this situation.  Not that a human population would have been capable of magically improving the dire situation that this Dregluk population finds itself in, however, a human population would have rebelled in fanatical resistance the second an occupier attempted to remove the infrastructure that the population depended on to survive.  No human parent could have watched an occupier, human or alien, remove the air processors that his or her children depended on to live and not immediately fought the oppressors with everything he or she had.  The Dregluk have not done this.  Instead, they placidly watch as human work crews dismantle their infrastructure and haul it off-planet.  They watch and die.  In large numbers. 

To attempt to gain an understanding of the Dregluk mindset, I have spoken with numerous Dregluk individuals, both provided to me by the occupation forces for interview, and selected randomly by myself during my exploration of the primary city.  Although I have attached transcripts of these interviews for committee analysis, I can sum up their contents very easily.  Essentially, the Dregluk all have a very fatalistic attitude that can be summed up as “Those who decide will determine the best course of action.  Until then I will continue as before.”  They cannot or will not identify “Those Who Will Decide”, no matter what form the questioning takes.  This is consistent with nearly every interview of Dregluk crews taken prisoner since the start of the war.  Essentially, it appears that the Dregluk are waiting for someone to tell them what to do.  This attitude appears to be universal.

The overall effect that all of this will have is beneficial to our initial goal of eliminating this population as a future threat to the human race.  However, the Dregluk of Dregluk Alpha can be described as lethargic, and will not present a photogenic appearance to justify our continued campaign of massive planetary bombardment.  In a word, they are pathetic, and should images of the die-off on Dregluk Alpha manage to reach Earth they may cause a significant amount of sympathy for the plight of the Dregluk.  Certainly, those on the Lunar Colonies that currently oppose Consul’s Directive 14 authorizing the use of enhanced radiation weapons against Dregluk populations will use this to bolster their arguments against this policy.  These Dregluk are not valiant warriors, or even dreaded barbarians, they are merely pathetic.       
 
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Republic: Attacks from the Austin System
« Reply #73 on: January 21, 2019, 10:20:18 AM »
March 2, 2143, Mars
Construction begins on the Anti-Small Unit Pods.  The construction time is anticipated to be only ten weeks, as much of the components for the pods have been pre-constructed on Earth. 

March 3, 2143, Houston
The Republic’s Survey Corps completes the geo-survey of the Houston system.  Houston-A IV, the location of Dregluk Bravo, is confirmed to be the only body in the system with deposits of TN resources.  Dregluk Bravo has very large deposits of five TN resources, including duranium and neutronium.  The deposits of duranium and boronide are present at high availability levels, while the others are at 0.1 levels. 

March 18, 2143, Houston
Three Dregluk ships jump into the system from Austin.  The attack force is composed of two battleships and a destroyer.  They speed away from the jump point as soon as they materialize, and the missile boats on the jump point launch missiles as soon as they can.  The tidal wave of missiles from the 1st LR Missile Group wipes out the Dregluk ships, leaving their hulks drifting alongside the wrecks of the earlier incursions. 

March 20, 2143, Mars
The first Star Class Battleship leaves the yards over Mars.  The Pride of Sol is humanity’s largest warship, and all of Mars celebrates at her launch.  The Pride of Sol joins the Home Fleet as its flagship, and the Venus and Jupiter, both Planet class BC’s, are transferred to the 1st Fleet to bolster Admiral Wallace’s firepower. 

In the Houston system…
The Advanced Colony Group arrives in-system.  They are directed to a large moon of the system’s outermost gas giant.  This has been a difficult decision for Admiral Wallace.  Originally, she had planned on establishing the new maintenance base on the same moon that contained the Forward Base, however, specialists informed her that the moon was too small for permanent human habitation.  Neither of the Dregluk inhabited planets were considered, for various reasons.  The two innermost terrestrial-type planets were both too Venus-like to be viable choices, which left the fifth moon of the outer gas giant as the only choice.  This moon is small, with a gravity only 13% that of Earth, but it is large enough to be considered a viable colony site.  At -66.2 degrees it is cold, and it has no atmosphere, but with a standard colony cost scale rating of 2.11 it is a decent choice.  The Advanced Cargo Group has been delivering infrastructure for some time, so the new colonists will find a ready-made colony for them to inhabit. 

As the colony ships begin unloading their cargo, the Advanced Cargo Group leaves the system, headed back to Earth to pick up the first load of maintenance facilities for the new forward maintenance facility. 

Admiral Wallace has been forced to start sending a portion of her fleet back to Bastion for overhauls.  Five of her sixteen frigates leave the system, headed back home. 

March 23, 2143, Houston
A Dregluk Mammoth class BB jumps into the system.  Admiral Chan gives the honor of engaging the Dregluk ship to the frigates Eire and Baikai.  It takes the two frigates twenty seconds to launch, but when they do their Thunderbolt missiles completely destroy the Dregluk ship in a welter of explosions, including two massive internal explosions. 

March 30, 2143, Los Angeles System (Adjacent to Sol)
The Fleet Scout Beckwourth detects a Dregluk gate construction ship entering the system.  Word is sent back to the Solar System, and in response a LR Missile Group is sent to deal with the intruder. 

April 7, 2143, Mars
Two new Star class battleships join the fleet.  The Vega and the Procyon join the Pride of Sol in the Home Fleet. 

In the Los Angeles System…
At 0509 hours the command Missile Boat assigned to the Home Fleet’s 5th LR Missile Group launched two Bludgeon IV ASM’s at the Dregluk ship headed towards the jump point to the Solar System.  The two missiles, designed to punch through a Dregluk battleship’s armor, completely destroyed the civilian ship. 

April 12, 2143, Houston
The Jupiter and the Venus, along with their escort of three frigates fresh from Bastion arrive in Houston and set out for the Forward Base.  Their arrival is a relief for Admiral Wallace, who has sent two thirds of her frigates back to Bastion, and will be forced to send the remainder back soon. 

April 18, 2143, Mars
The Bismarck and the Warspite leave the orbital yards freshly refitted to Assault Ship r2 standard.  They immediately set out for Houston to rejoin the 1st Fleet. 

April 28, 2143, Houston
A Dregluk Colossus class BB jumps into the system from Austin.  Four missile boats immediately launch, completely wiping the Dregluk jump ship out. 

April 29, 2143, Houston
Admiral Wallace deploys the Mars, Venus, and the Jupiter to the jump point to Austin.  Stocks of Bludgeon ASM’s have run low, while there are still many Thunderbolt ASM’s in the munitions dump on Forward Base.  While the missile boats will remain on station on the jump point, they will not fire their missiles unless there is an overwhelming need.  Ammunition ships are on their way from the home system, but won’t arrive for several weeks. 

May 21, 2143, Houston
A cruiser and a battleship jump into the system from Austin.  The three Planet class BC’s sitting on the jump point engage the cruiser, while the two ASM Frigates Nairobi and Ontario launch on the battleship.  The Nairobi and Ontario, with their veteran crews, launched almost immediately, but the BC’s had a little more trouble.  The fifty Thunderbolt IV ASM’s launched by the frigates swarmed the Mammoth class BB, which proved to be incredibly fragile.  The battleship was hit by four of the Republic’s smaller ASM’s, at which point it exploded from the inside, shattered by what had to be an internal magazine explosion.  Unfortunately, the Thunderbolt ASM’s were too small to carry their own sensors and the remaining ASM’s self-destructed after their target disappeared.  Twenty seconds after the two Dregluk ships entered the system the BC’s finally managed to get their weapons into action.  The BC’s launched twenty-six Thunderbolt IV ASM’s between them, all targeted on the fleeing cruiser.  It would take twenty-five seconds to reload their launchers.  The Vrock class cruiser proved to be much more durable than its larger companion as it absorbed the BC’s missile salvo and continued running. 

With ten seconds left until the BC’s would be able to launch again, the Human ships detected incoming missiles.  Thirteen size 3 Dregluk ASM’s were racing towards the fleet and Aegis VI AMM’s began spilling from the anti-missile frigate Delhi’s launchers.  The Aegis VI AMM’s destroyed twelve of the incoming missiles, and the Mars’ CIWS destroyed the last as it closed to attack range.  Five seconds later the BC’s launched another twenty-six missiles.  By that time the cruiser was three hundred thousand kilometers out and racing away at full speed.  This salvo destroyed the fleeing cruiser, although it took all of the missiles to do it. 

In the aftermath of the battle the frigates are sent back to Forward Base while the BC’s and the missile boats remain at the jump point. 

May 22, 2143, Mars
The orbital yards launch the Republic’s first two Anti-Small Unit Pods.  Three more will be launched in four weeks, but after that it will be the end of the year before any more come out of the yards.  Two Fleet Docks assigned to the Home Fleet will convey the new pods to the Houston system.  The Docks are large enough that the smaller pods won’t slow them too much, and they are able to take aboard enough of the new ASU missiles to resupply the two pods four times.  They set out for the Houston system, a trip that will take just over nineteen days. 

June 6, 2143, Houston
A Mammoth class BB jumps into the Houston system from Austin.  The Nairobi and Ontario launch their Thunderbolt missiles at the intruder, with the battlecruiser force rushing to back them up.  The two veteran frigates launched their missiles within five seconds of the Dregluk ship appearing on the jump point, and the Thunderbolt IV’s swarmed the Dregluk ship, penetrating its armor multiple times.  The BC force launched against the intruder twenty seconds later, and this salvo punched through the big ship’s armor more times, but only caused several small internal explosions.  The battleship must have suffered from serious internal damage because it wasn’t able to launch its own missiles before the BC’s got off a second salvo.  This salvo destroyed the fleeing BB. 

The BC’s and the frigates returned to the Forward Base to rearm.  When they returned to the jump point, they were reinforced by the first group of frigates to return from Bastion, fresh from overhauls.  Admiral Wallace was very glad to see these frigates arrive, but was beginning to become concerned for her long-range missile boats.  They would be reaching their endurance limits in the next several months, and it wasn’t clear if the forward maintenance base would be up and running at that point. 
 
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Republic: Panic in the Sol System
« Reply #74 on: January 23, 2019, 09:40:06 AM »
June 10, 2143, 0622 hours, Ganymede Colony Defense Command
Lt. Commander Andrew Oliver, senior officer commanding Ganymede Defense Command, was jerked awake when the comm system in his quarters began ringing.  Loudly.  Groggily, he hit receive as he tried to get his wits together.  “Yes?”  He didn’t both to sound either professional or pleased to have been woken up. 

“Sir!  Priority message from the Amos Chapman!  Priority Red!”

Lt. Commander Oliver shook his head, trying to clear it.  There had been a party at the Governor’s mansion the night before, and as the senior officer of Defense Command present on the colony he had been invited, of course.  Between being out late and the amount he had drunk, he considered it a minor miracle he was awake at all.  “The Chapman?  That’s the new scout they just launched, isn’t it?  Well, what the hell do they want?” He sagged in his bed, wishing the rest of the world would just go away.  Nothing ever happened here, in this remote corner of the Solar System, and if it did they would have put someone way more senior to him in charge. 

The senior rating on the other end of the comm connection stared at him incredulously.  “Sir, contact warning.  They’ve picked up a Dregluk ship 617 mkm’s out-system of our position!”  The rating eyes were bulging and he looked more than a little panicked. 

Lt. Commander Oliver sobered up quickly.  “No, that’s impossible.  They can’t be here!  What does our sensor network say?”

The rating stared at him blankly.  “Sir, don’t you remember?  You ordered the sensors to only be activated once a day to save on maintenance and power bills?  They are down right now.”

“What!  Get them up!  Right now!  I’ll be in the command center immediately.”  He closed the comm channel.  He did indeed remember that order, but he wasn’t about to admit it on a comm that was almost certain to be reviewed by his court martial committee when this was all over.   

By the time he got to the command center, disheveled but coherent, thanks to a quick draught of a really nasty hangover cure that was almost as bad as the original hangover.  He would pay for it later, but he needed to be aware now.  “Situation report!”

“Sir, the contact is confirmed.  It is 617 mkm’s away, headed on a course of 330 relative, speed 3,402 km/s.  War-book says it is a suspected Dregluk survey class.  Several of this class were encountered early in the war and destroyed here in the Solar System.”

“Oh thank god!”  Lt. Commander Oliver sagged into a chair at his station.  The fact that it wasn’t a Dregluk attack fleet was something.  It wasn’t much; everyone would still go crazy that a Dregluk ship managed to penetrate so deeply into the Solar System, but still, at least it wasn’t a warship.

“Alert the other base commanders.  On its current course it won’t enter our range but we might as well be ready if it does.  Has the scout alerted the Admiralty?”

“Yes, sir.  They sent out an all-ships message immediately after the warning they sent to us.”

“Very good.  Inform the Admiralty that we stand ready to assist any action taken in regards to the contact.  Feed them our sensor take as well.”  While publicly he appeared confident, privately he was about as panicked as he could get.  This was going to go badly for him, no matter how it turned out. 

“Yes sir.”     

In Mars orbit…
“The Fleet reports ready in all respects, sir.”

Rear Admiral Roberts looked around his command deck.  The command deck aboard the Pride of Sol was brand new and spacious.  His station was at the rear of the compartment, on a raised dais, where he could oversee the activity of his command crew.  The command crew’s stations were arranged around his in expanding half circles three deep, and at the center of the deck, right in front of his station, was a massive plot tank that could display anything from a tactical display showing one ship all the way up to an interstellar plot showing the jump links to the known systems.  Right now, the tank showed the area around the fleet out to 1.3 billion kilometers, which was enough to show the inner system and the new contact outside of Jupiter’s orbit.  He smiled slightly.  He could have dispatched a group of missile boats to intercept this Dregluk ship, after all, that’s exactly what they had been built for, but the temptation to finally take his fleet out to battle was just too much.  His battleships would finally engage the enemy, even if it just was a probe ship.  “Very well, all units will meet fleet speed and course.  Engage!”

The Pride of Sol, along with her consorts the Vega and Procyon, and their escorting frigates, set out to intercept the impudent Dregluk ship that had somehow penetrated to the heart of the Republic. 

Meanwhile, on Earth…
Consul Lauren Young was livid and she didn’t care who knew it.  Someone’s head was going to roll over this.  Rear Admiral Isobel Gilbert, CO of the Home Fleet, probably wasn’t at fault here given she had only taken over a month before, but Consul Young was on a roll.  Admiral Gilbert could take it or resign, she didn’t care.  After a minute or two, though, she ran down.  In a deceptively calm voice she continued.  “So, what’s the explanation, Admiral Gilbert?  Where did this ship come from?”

Admiral Gilbert had been around long enough not to fall into the Consul’s trap.  She wasn’t calm, not even close, and her apparently calm demeanor was designed to give her unwarranted confidence.  So… “Ma’am, we don’t know.”  The Consul’s face reddened again, but before she could say anything the Admiral continued.  “Ma’am, I am doing everything I can to learn what exactly happened.  The Dregluk ship appeared on the sensors of the Fleet Scout Chapman, which was conducting trials off of Mars after being launched one week ago.  The scout’s thermal sensors picked up the contact approximately 600 mkm’s beyond Jupiter’s orbit.  At that time, and since, it has been headed across the system.  The only system bodies on its current course are in the outer system.  If it is, indeed, a survey ship it may be completing the survey begun by the Dregluk before the war.”

Consul Young had calmed down as the Admiral spoke.  “And where did it come from?  And are there more?”
 
“Ma’am, we just don’t know.  The contact appeared 736 mkm’s from the jump point to the Los Angeles system, however, its current course, when extrapolated back does not come close to the jump point.  In addition, we have a picket ship and the Monitor Waterloo stationed at the jump point, and the scout Beckwourth stationed in the Los Angeles system.  None of them reported any contacts.  We have a message on its way to them requesting an update of their status, but we have no reason to think that there have been any problems with them.”

Consul Young moved to her chair and sat down.  While she looked calmer, she pointedly did not invite the Admiral to sit.  “If it didn’t come through the jump point then where did it come from?”

“Ma’am, all of our jump points are picketed and all either have scouts posted in the adjacent systems or listening posts.  There is virtually no way this ship could have made its way past them.”

“Well, it’s here isn’t it?”

“Yes, ma’am, it is.  The current theory by Naval Intelligence is that its been hiding in the outer system since the start of the war.”

“How is that possible?  Wouldn’t we have detected them before this?”

Admiral Gilbert shook her head.  “Not necessarily.  We’ve been focused on looking for larger warships, not these small survey units.  And, well, Earth’s sensor capability has been drastically reduced over the last year to provide sensor facilities for the Houston system.  That’s why the Fleet Scout Chapman detected the Dregluk ship, not Earth’s sensors.”

Consul Young’s face turned thunderous.  “Is that an attempt to shift the blame, Admiral?”

Admiral Gilbert didn’t flinch.  “No ma’am, it is a statement of fact.  The Earth’s sensor capability was drawn down to support the offensive against the Dregluk.  That action was proposed by the Fleet and approved by both the Senate and the prior Consul’s office.”

Consul Young nodded at the mention of the prior administration.  “Yes, Consul Foster.  Very well.  I’ve already ordered a change in construction priorities to bring up our sensor capability.   Admiral,” She leaned over her desk, “Deal with this ship quickly.  And find out where it came from and if there are any more.  Quickly.” 

Admiral Gilbert saluted and left the Consul’s office with her marching orders. 

One day later the Dregluk ship faded from the thermal sensors of the Fleet Scout Chapman.  The Home Fleet continued on its course for its estimated intercept point, and the Chapman continued heading towards the outer system to look for any other Dregluk ships that might be hiding out there.     

June 14, 2143, Sol
For four days two Fleet Scouts and the bulk of the Home Fleet had been searching for one small Dregluk survey ship and they had been failing to find it.  The problem was, essentially, that space was big and the Dregluk ship was small.  Specifically, the Dregluk ship was too small for the Home Fleet’s active sensors, so they had to get relatively close to pick it up, and its thermal profile was small enough that the scouts could only detect it if they got within 167 mkm’s of the Dregluk ship.  Finally, at 042 hours, the Fleet Scout Chapman detected the small alien ship approximately 160 mkm’s away from its current location.  The scout’s commander immediately sent a contact report to the Home Fleet, and turned his scout towards the small Dregluk ship.  The Chapman was the most recent version of the Fleet Scout design, with a speed that was 2,600 km/s faster than the Dregluk ship’s speed.  It was doomed.   

Fourteen hours later, the Home Fleet had been forced to close to 38 mkm’s of the small Dregluk ship before finally acquiring it their active sensors.  Admiral Roberts ordered his ship, the Pride of Sol, to engage the Dregluk ship, and a single salvo of five Thunderbolt ASM’s was sufficient to destroy the small ship.  The incident had revealed an unpleasant fact inherent in the Republic’s ship designs.  During the desperate early years of the war, to save space and create the best warship per ton, the Admiralty’s designs had had to make tradeoffs.  One of those tradeoffs was to design sensors tailored to the known Dregluk designs.  The smallest Dregluk warship encountered at that point was their destroyers, which all massed 9,550 tons.  So, the Republic’s sensors were optimized to detect ships larger than 9,000 tons.  Anything smaller than that was problematic.   

Admiral Roberts ordered the fleet to perform a series of exercises as long as it was away from Mars.  The Home Fleet’s two scouts would depart that day for an extended probe of the outer system.  Admiral Gilbert had protested the orders, but Consul Young was adamant. 

An investigation would be undertaken by the Admiralty to determine how the Dregluk ship had entered the Solar System undetected.  The investigators would take note of the fact that the PDC’s on Ganymede had neglected to activate their sensors until after the Dregluk ship had been detected, but analysis showed that the alien ship had never approached close enough to Ganymede to be detected by the sensors emplaced there.  Lt. Commander Oliver’s superiors in Defense Command wanted to reprimand him, however, they were overruled by the Admiralty.  They really didn’t want anyone looking too closely at the Admiralty’s reasoning for placing a junior Lt. Commander in command of the defense of the entire colony, so Lt. Commander Oliver had to settle for being placed under the command of a more senior officer.  No evidence was found to lead the investigators to a conclusion on how the Dregluk ship got into the system, or whether or not it had been in-system since the start of the war.   
 
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