Author Topic: Episode 2: Baptism of fire  (Read 789 times)

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Offline UnLimiTeD

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Episode 2: Baptism of fire
« on: October 03, 2010, 06:52:42 AM »
A short one this time.

In the Summer of 26, the Grav Survey of Outworld was completed, and the Administration had to make the decision of what to do now.
After a short debate, and given the Republic had never encountered a dangerout enemy in the last 30 years, the decision was made to send the Ships through the first Jump Point to explore the next system.

In late July, they ended up in Proximy Centauri, a huge system centered arounda  single F3-V star.
The system had a sizeable Asteroid belt and several planets of Interest, first and foremost the fourth.
However, what jumped the eye far more than the Planet where the Massive Wrecks hovering around it.
5 Wrecks between 1000 and 23250 tons were floating in space next to the planet, and High command decided to immediately send a scout fleet and recall the survey ships.
Admiral Cocceji protested an unguarded Scout Mission and didn't lead the expedition personally, but he wasn't the only one in charge by now anymore.

In early August the First Fleet HQ, being the only Scout Group available, entered the system and began to close in on the inner system,
comprising Backbone, Spruance, and Outreach.
Faced with regular Interstellar Distances, the Space Reconaisance Sensors range of 300 Millions looked pretty tiny all of a sudden.
Yet still, the fleet carried on.
It proved to be a fatal decision.

On the 21st of August, at 1900, the SRS detected 4 Ships on interception course.
The alien Fleet consisted of 4 different ships, each of them a different Class.
Intelligence designated the Ships
Cerberus Rupes    7750 Tons
Tithonium Chasma  7750 Tons
Valles Marineris  15450 Tons
Abalos Undae      15450 Tons

Intelligence quickly discovered that one of the Wrecks in Front of the fourth Planet was an Abalos Undae as well.
It didn't take the crews much to figure out that the wrecks obviously resulted from a recent battle, and that it was quite likely that someone had lived on that Planet, despite the Methane Atmosphere.
Given the number of wrecks, it was likely what they faced were the aggressors.

The fleet immediately turned around and headed back to the Jumppoint, while broadcasting a prepared message of peace and greetings and whatever else the Diplomats at home felt was necessary for a first contact message.
The Alien ships ships didn't seem to care and went into pursuit.
It was then that a fatal flaw of the Scouting plan became apperent.

The hostile Ships moved at 6193 km/s, more than double as fast as the Scout Fleet.
While the original plan was to scout and retreat at sign of danger, the Range of the sensors was too small and the speed of the ships too low to actually escape a hostile alien fleet.
It was only a matter of time until the presumeably hostile Aliens catched up, and after one and a half year of constant training, the first fleet would lose it's HQ section without fighting a single battle.
In the Intelligence Central, a young officer commited Suicide.

The hours passed by unblieveably slowly, and the aliens closed in relentlessly.
Yet, even after over 20 hours, no missiles where incomming.
The crews started to expect a beam armed enemy, the speed would surely help them.
Time continued to tick, but nothing happened;
The waiting was probably more nerve wrecking for the crews than the certain death they believed to await.

Then, finally, at 1652, a huge stream of missiles began to close on the three ships.
The only Missile Defense of the ships was a single Dual Gauss Turret on the Outreach, so they never hoped to intercept much anyways,
but the horror grew nonetheless when the fist wave of 26 Size 1 missiles homed in, followed every 5 seconds by another one.
The Commanders on the home planet watched the pictures with growing despair, but they were probably not the ones to scream at the moment.
The Missiles where moving at over 40000 km/s, and interception was a futile attempt.

Within 5 seconds, the Backbone was hit by 52 strengh 1 hits. Now the Federation ships could play out their only strength: Their strong armor.
52 hits, dispersed over ships entire hull, barely scratched the strength Nine armor of the Backbone, and some of the crew hoped that at least one ship would survive to exit the system, and lead a potential counterattack.
The missiles continued to home in with no remorse, and slowly, the Backbones armor was being worn down.
Only for short where the crews cheered up by a single Interception, proving the expected hitrate of roughly 4%.
Just when the Armor of the backbone was finally starting to wear down, the missiles switched targets to the outreach.
While this certainly prolonged the life expectancy of the fleet, the Outreach had less armor and would be required to effectively lead a counterattack against the aliens with the rest of the fleet.

After the fourth Salvo, the Outreach's armor was wasted in atleast two places, and it continued to drop.
One missile that would have penetrated into the ship was stopped dead by the recharging shields in a futile attempt to prove themselves useful.
Already 4 holes were gaping in the Outreach's armor, but once again, the Aliens switched targets, now attacking Spruance.

The logic of this behavior was beyond Human unterstanding, but the crews had no time to think about it.
Given the spread of fire, they started hoping that the aliens would run of ammo before they were all dead.
And their hopes were close to the truth, or so it seemed.
After a barrage of over 600 Missiles, at 1653 the neverending stream cut off.
In a moment of blind luck, the competely battered armor of Spruance was hit in a pattern that allowed her remaining armor to take all the hits.

For now, it was over.
But any hopes of survival were futile as the aliens where still closing in, and still with a significant speed advantage.
The Jumppoint was over 600 million kilometers away, and if the aliens mounted even a single 10 cm laser their hours were counting down.

Slowly, but steadily, the aliens gained ground, and then, 14 minutes after the last missile hit, new missiles started appearing on the sensors.
Everyone knew it was over, but why stop now, after minutes of futile resistance?

The aliens started where they left, with the first salvoes going onto backbone.
Again, her formidable armor proved to be a deterent for the onslaught.
Still, it wouldn't last forever.
The last missile of the second wave finally penetrated, hitting an Ion Engine on backbone.
Despite not destroying the component, it was now that everyone started accepting their demise.
A few select had found time to write their testament in the minutes between the barrages, and sent them home now.

By now most work at the homeworld had come to a stop, and everyone listened to the broadcast, for pictures were classified.
The next salvos started slowly ripping backbone apart. The ship fell out of formation, the lifesupport shut down, and fuel and maintenance supplies were dispersed into space.

By the next salvo, Outreach was the only ship with active sensors left, and the interception chance was too low to warrant to even try it, so the commanding officer gave the order to shut them down.
Again, despite or maybe because backbone was out of formation, creeping along at 1000km/s, the aliens again retargeted.
The missiles flew after the lead ships, as if they attempted to make the chase as tense as possible.
If so, they failed terribly when Outreach was ripped apart by the Explosion of one of her Ion engines.
Lifepods spilled into space, or presumeably they did, because the fleet had lost any sensor capability it might have still had.

On the homeworld, the Expansion of the Naval shipyards was ordered, and work on a new sensor ship design was to start once everyone had recovered from the shock.
They would beat those Aliens back, and follow them to their home system. No one provoked this aggression.

20 seconds nothing happened before the next salvo hit the last intact ship, the Spruance.
After losing an engine, the ECm, and an engineering space, the ship was even more vulnerable than before, and it didn't take too long before it ceases existance as well, being ripped aprart by internal explosions.

Backbone searched for survivors, but due to complete lack of sensors couldn't find any lifepods in the wreck of Outreach.
Knowing they wasted 20 seconds in the face of their enemy, the ship struggled towards the jump point, awaiting it's doom any second.

Seconds, minutes ran past, and nothing happened.
Then, when they already hoped that the enemy had run out of Ammo, the ship was struck by 52 Missiles and ripped up.
All was lost.
 

 

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