Pioneering into battle
Posted on Wed Nov 1st, 2017 @ 7:32pm by Captain Elijah Michaels & Lieutenant JG Elliot Keller & Commander Bertrand Cuprum & Commander Cor Cordale & Lieutenant Commander Ziyal Tajor & Ensign Todd Bailey
When the Sinful strike back
Location: Bridge, USS Pioneer.
"Captain we are out of Warp and in position with the rest of the Fleet." Elliot said from the Operations console to Cor. "I'm reading numerous Jennarri energy signatures coming from the M Class world."
Cordale gave a nod, "Call out groupings and watch for ground defenses. Relay any significant ground force massings to the troops. Gotta let them know what they're getting into." he paused, "The goal is to reach the planet intact. The rest of the fleet is going to provide cover, but let's try to be a small target. Prepare a few random evasive maneuver packets, just in case."
"Aye," Ziyal responded simply, quickly narrowing down a list of more general random evasive maneuver packets to a smaller list which she populated and sent to the Conn.
A 'spike' showed up on Todd's console and he quickly checked it, reporting "Sir, sensors show we're being scanned."
"Shields up, divert power from phasers to deflectors. We're not going to need to shoot back." he declared, "Begin the run."
The Helmsman nodded as he began to take the Ship into position. Pioneer was surrounded by her fellow Intrepids in their group as they were surrounded by those ships protecting them.
"Sir, we've got incoming it looks like Jennarri Fighters heading our way at 234 mark 315." Elliot commented. "Ensign Bailey can you confirm?"
"Confirmed Lieutenant" Todd replied "Tactical computer puts the ship count at....twenty....no, wait a moment....bloody hell, they've split!" he suddenly yelled. His hands moved quickly across the console, and as they did he said "Sir, they've deliberately flown in two's in tandem to hide their numbers, one fighters flown about three meters behind the other so that when we scanned them it looked like just one ship!!"
"So they're clever." Cordale said. He didn't want to ask how that hid them from the rest of the fleet. "Update the fleet on the situation. Tactical, load a full barrage of torpedoes but hold on the fire. Any that break through, I want you to fire on a proximity detonation. I want those torpedoes to explode in front of the fighters." he paused, "It'll disorient the pilots and possibly throw up enough interference to disrupt their sensors for long enough for us to slip through."
Ziyal listened to core's strategy, she didn't have anything to add to it so she concentrated on deciphering the strategies and tactics that the Jennari were using.
Todd's fingers moved quickly over his console, starting the load up sequence in the torpedo tubes.
He tapped on the captain chair comm badge. "Engineering. I need you to prep two photon torpedoes with gravimetric charges. If the flash bang don't work, I intend to open a hole for us the old fashioned way." he paused to do a little math in his head, "Set your yield for fifty isotones. Let me know when they're ready."
"Mitchell here Sir, we are ready on your orders." The Engineer said over the channel.
"Commander we've got comm chatter, San Antonio, Dundee and Shangai are moving to shield us using their Fighters, USS Juno has been seperated and Victory has broken ranks to go help her out." Elliot commented as he relayed the information from Ops. "Fearless is sticking to us with her Defiant Squadron."
"Just keep the throttle pegged and get us to that target site. What's the status on those Jennarri fighters?" Cordale was trying to keep track of everything and it was starting to get a little overwhelming.
"San Antonio, Dundee and their fighters are drawing some of the Jenarri fighters fire Sir" Todd called out " but a lot of them are still coming at us. The Shangai is trying their best to pick off the tail end Jenarri fighters, but they've sustained heavy damage and have lost over half their fighters!" he concluded.
"Inform the Antonio and Dundee of our intent to fire to give their fighters some warning, then fire the first spread. Proximity detonation, full yield. I want to daze those bastards and then the Antonio and the Dundee swarms should have an easier time. We can't fire those gravimetric torpedoes with our guys in the neighborhood, so hold off on those. Fire once we get confirmation from those two ships."
"Aye Sir" Todd replied, his hands moving quickly over the console. Once he'd relayed the CO's orders, he turned back to his console and watched the situation unfold.
"Come on dammit!" he said as he watched the San Antonio, Dundee and their fighters slowly move out the way so the Pioneer could fire. Finally, after what was only seconds, but felt soooo much longer, it seemed there was enough area for the Pioneer to launch the torpedo's. Moments later, confirmation was sent by both Federation ships that they and their respective fighters were clear of the firing solution area and Todd reported it. As ordered, he set the first spread to proximity detonation with full yield.
"First spread firing in three...two...one....NOW!" he reported. As he hit the firing button, he looked at his screen in horror "Oh God no, get out of there!!!!!"
It was to late, a fighter squadron from the Dundee had broken rank and gone after Jenarri fighters that were intent to go after the Pioneer. It was to late, the torpedo's launched and reached their target within seconds. The explosions engulfed Federation and Jenarri fighters alike, instantly destroying those closest to the detonation. However, those that were further away were broken up, still, those on the edge of the blast range tried desperately to turn and get away, but were to slow, and like eggs they were cracked open, jettisoning their pilots into the cold of space. Todd watched as Federation and Jenarri pilots bloated, struggled and in some cases almost seemed like they were 'swimming' but soon stopped moving and floated away.
Cor took a sharp breath through clenched teeth. Watching them slowly die reminded him of the only two deaths he had ever suffered where he didn't get to actually see it. A mercy, perhaps, or a curse. An entire squadron, on his hands. Though, much like the deaths of his brothers, if he were to dwell on it, he'd be stuck there forever wondering about If and Why.
Ziyal watched the fighters pursue the Jenarri into the torpedo with alarm. It was distressing that they probably killed several of the pilots. However, the ones that had ejected would get picked up if the Federation won the battle. Ziyal thought she might have allowed a few more seconds before launching the gravimetric torpedo, but recriminations could come later, they still had a battle to fight.
Cor's prosthetic hand clenched. "Get us to that landing site. I don't care if we have to get out and push." he opened his prosthetic fist to run his thumb into the metallic palm, as though massaging away an old ache.
"A...aye...S...Sir" Todd stammered, still staring at the horror of the broken fighters and bodies floating in open space. He shook himself, and blinked a couple of times to clear the tears that had formed in his eyes.
"Second spread ready, firing in three, two, one....NOW!" he called out. The second spread flashed out from the ship and detonated in the same area as the first, blasting the fighter debris out the way and catching those Jenarri fighters that had had to slow down to pick their way through the debris field of their fallen comrades and destroying them completely.
"Sir, we've created a 'hole', the next set of Jenarri fighters are to far away to fill the space before we get through. Antonio and Dundee, have turned broadside to make a slip way for us, their fighters can go through before us and engage the next wave of Jenarri fighters and draw their fire!"
Elliot looked over from Ops. "Commander, Victory has taken a hit to her Primary Hull they've used the Ship as a shield for the Juno." The Lieutenant couldn't believe the readout. "Her Shields are at 75, 67, 58 percent...."
"Nothing I can do about that from this chair." Cordale actually grumbled about how tied his hands were. "As for that hole, take it. The sooner we get this tub on the ground the closer we are to ending this. Less time, less risk, less bloodshed." he sure was optimistic.
"Passing the San Antonio and Dundee now Sir, their fighters have taken the lead" Todd reported "they're engaging the Jenarri fighters, we're approximately five seconds behind them."
After five seconds, the Pioneer shook slightly as it was targeted by the Jenarri fighters that had made it past the Federation fighters.
"Twelve Jenarri fighters have made it past our line Sir" Todd reported "our fighters are still engaged with the remainder of their second wave trying to hold them back. Our shields are holding, but the Jenarri are to fast for us to target them all!"
Todd started to think quickly, what would target all the Jenarri fighters and stop them. He clicked his fingers "Sir, if we emit an EM pulse, it might be enough to temporarily cripple the Jenarri fighters computers and stop them dead in their tracks, we could just then pick them off. The only problem with that though is any of our fighters in the vicinity will be stopped dead in their tracks as well as it'll knock out their computers also, making them vulnerable to be fired upon."
It was a devils advocate solution, and Todd knew it, but with the way things were going, he couldn't think of any other way to stop the Jenarri fighters quickly because the Pioneer couldn't fire another spread of torpedo's as to many Federation ships were now in their vicinity.
"Our last gambit cost too many lives." That was mostly the fighter squad's fault, but Cor couldn't bring himself to waste time thinking on that. "Give me all good speed, Mister Todd. As a friend of mine in my old mechanic days used to say... if you can't dodge it, ram it."
"Aye Sir, beginning to divert available power for ramming speed" Todd replied.
"We're bigger than them, they'll move. Bolster our forward shields in expectation of the thump." Cordale said, sounding a little cold towards the Jennarri as he gave the order. "Once we're past, balance the shields back across."
Elliot moved to the rear of Ops. "I've moved over what power I can get, evacuation of forward sections is completed." The Purple uniformed Lieutenant Junior Grade then looked at his Thux Commanding Officer. "We are ready."
With the evacuation complete, and the shields at the ready, he took a breath.. "Begin the run."
There was a series of flashes from behind as three defiant class ships, faster, and more capable of tracking and dispatching small targets, mowed through the fighter trail.
The comms crackled, "Bertrand to Cor, you are clear to land."
With that the three ships spun on point and returned to the fray, leaving the landing ships only to worry lay on the planet below.
Cordale released a breath he wasn't even aware he was holding. "Signal back to Bert. Much appreciations for the assist, and give them hell." he paused, "Okay, let's make for planetfall.... and cancel the ramming order. Keep the shields to the front to compensate for entry into atmo, and get our people ready to mobilize."
"Aye Sir, cancelling ramming speed" Todd replied "all shields forward as ordered" he finished.