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David Foss

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  1. David Foss

    First Command

    Commander Vauban, I have no words to extend that would even begin to convey my sympathy. That in mind, I shall do only this... Please accept my sincere condolences and know that the prayers of myself and everyone I have known go with you. I am not a religious man, but I do recognize the greater power, whatever it may be, and I reserve prayers for the times when they are truly needed. This is one such time. I am truly sorry for your loss, and I will keep the fires burning high here, should you return. (403) 288-4261
  2. Devined intervention, anyone? Perhaps the twisted and tattered remains of the hull protected him somehow... Who knows? Stanger things have happened (can't think of any, but it's early friday morning, so what do you expect?) It is a good story, Hamblin. Don't give up on it And unless you want yourself dead, I'm sure there's another way than simply cloning yourself (on the other hand, a brand new clone wouldn't have to deal with the insanity bit). Who knows? Maybe he and Tiretis can hit things off better this time ------------------ Commander David Foss, GCV Deterrence
  3. David Foss

    First Command

    Charles, I see... Well, with the timeline already being established, that isn't really an option, but there's no reason we can't tie things together at a later date I got caught up last night, so I didn't get the writing finished. Hopefully it'll be up later tonight (the time index on this page is about two hours ahead of me). ------------------ Commander David Foss, GCV Deterrence
  4. David Foss

    First Command

    Commander Chavik, The reason I had the time set for a month is mainly for the Deterrence's sake. She was, after all, destroyed at that battle, so they would have to build a new one for the most part. One month seems good enough for me... besides, it also gives enough of a time index for Foss to be promoted and reassigned Anyways, I've decided to fire things back up again. I'm sure Sebastian can catch up (leave out the boring waiting parts). The stuff I'm waiting to post is just too good (I think... I'm very proud of this part of the story) to wait any longer I should have it up in about four hrs or so. ------------------ Commander David Foss, GCV Deterrence
  5. David Foss

    First Command

    First off, Commander Vauban, I would like to say that no name is above the other. That's the idea of writing with someone. It's an even playing field. You're not writing below me, you're just a little late, that's all I have agreed to your proposal. It will be interesting to see how this unfolds. I've already sent you a brief outline for the next few posts. However, in lieu of your... tardiness... I will be halting my posts until you get caught up. Hopefully it doesn't take too long Unfortunately, when I get into a writing frenzy, I'm very impatient. Don't worry, though. I can wait. To give you an idea, a story that I've been writing for over two years is now only a couple of chapters ahead of this one (a story of just over two weeks). Ahh, the wonders of writing within an existing universe! Thank you, SC! It's so much easier (and just as fun) to write within a universe rather than trying to create a universe of your own to write in. Anyway, like I said, I will likely not be posting for a few days. We'll see how long it takes. However, as all good writers have said at one point or another, never rush a good thing, lest it becomes something less. Take as long as you need, Commander Vauban. Just try not to step on any toes Sorry for all the smilies, I'm just really hyped. ------------------ Commander David Foss, GCV Deterrence [This message has been edited by David Foss (edited 06-17-99).]
  6. David Foss

    First Command

    Okay, contrary to popular belief, these sections are written in advance. However, I'm my own worst critic, and half the time I revise something upwards of twelve times before I post it. Anyways, here goes... BTW, I have revised the last post. Thanks, Charles. (RP on) Hiker twisted the IC around, lining up another P-21. The other carriers had begun launching fighters. If he didnt get out soon, the odds would be against him. Fifteen to one was one thing. Forty plus to one was quite another. Runt spoke up from behind him. Hike, youd best get us the hell outta here! Not yet. I want to make sure the Deterrence is at least two systems away and that she makes it that far in one piece! Well be two systems away in two-thousand pieces if you dont get us out of here! Hiker looked back at him. Well, then, I guess youll finally get to be in more than one place at one time, wont you? He said, grinning. Runt tightened the restraints as Hiker hit the afterburners. His scream was cut short as Hiker spun the IC around, killing the forward momentum and firing six rapid blasts into the P-21. The fighter disappeared behind a flower of fiery debris. All right, Hike! Runt shouted. An alarm sounded and he focused his attention on the Tacscan display. Twelve new fighters are jumping toward us. Good. Hiker said. Im in the mood for seconds. Umm, Hike? Runt replied, worry thick in his voice. He didnt get a chance to say anything before the enormous bulk of a Stormcarrier flashed into existence ahead of them. The ship was over two times the length of the Deterrence, and the IC would be no more than a bug smear on the windshield if they didnt get out of there fast. Hiker swore, spinning the fighter around. Five turrets opened fire on the IC as Hiker kicked in the afterburners, speeding the tiny fighter away. Hiker twisted the fighter in a desperate attempt to avoid the storm of deadly fire, swearing a blue streak in three different languages. Runt would have laughed if he hadnt been so busy praying. Runt, whats the situation? No response. Runt! Hiker called desperately. A shot lanced past the canopy, the intense heat burning a furrow across the canopy. The amount of power running through the cannons would rip the ICs shields like an axe through tissue paper. If they scored even one clean hit it was all over. Runt shook his head, focusing on his displays. Ah, fighters still on our tail. The jump point is on the other side of the Stormcarrier. They are mining the wormhole. They dont want us to get through. Why should they? Weve been tearing their fighters to shreds for the last twenty minutes. Personally, Im flattered that they would waste such resources on us. Incoming missile! Runt shouted. EMD active. Hiker reported back calmly. I can see only one way out of this, Runt. He said as the missile streaked past, a trail following behind it. You arent going to like it. I wont blame you if you want to shoot me later. He finished as several shots lanced past. What if I want to shoot you now? He asked, hopeful. Then you dont get home. He said simply. The IC had moved beyond the range of the Stormcarriers weapons. The massive ship had laid over fifteen mines. Overkill for an IC, but then again, this was Hiker they were trying to nail. Fifteen mines werent enough. Even so, Hiker wasnt too cocky. Sixteen was his limit. Hed never been able to navigate more than that in the simulators. A futile practice, his instructors had told him. Oh well. They always said that the best experience comes from the field, not the classroom; that what happened in the simulator was nothing like what happened out there. They believed that what was possible in the simulator could not be done in real life. Time to prove them wrong. The Stormcarrier had finished deploying the mines, and had turned to face them. The fighters swarmed ahead of the ship, ready to swat the IC like a mosquito. Hiker shouted a war cry, accelerating the fighter to the point where he would be fast, but not out of control. A fine line, that was. Enemy blasts lanced past the fighter as she sped toward her target: the Stormcarrier. Umm, Hike? Runt inquired worriedly, his tone not unlike it had been just before the carriers arrival. Not now! He shouted back. It was time to complete the illusion. He slammed on the afterburners, accelerating directly toward the great ship. The distance closed as the pilot silently counted down. The Stormcarrier opened fire again, the deadly energy pulses streaking through the void, flashing closer and closer as the fighter drew nearer. Time for the fly to escape the windshield. Three kilometers two one At five hundred meters away from the carrier, Hiker fired the retros, slowing the fighter down that ever so minute fraction of an inch, barely clearing the bulk of the carrier. The fighter streaked along the sleek hull of the ship, clearing the engines and again accelerating toward the wormhole that would deliver them from otherwise certain death. The mines Damn! Hiker shouted. He remembered too late about the mines surrounding their escape route. Still more weapons acquired the fighter: those of the enemy fighters, the Stormcarrier and the mines. Even so, fate decided to smile on them. Through pure luck, none of the mines detonated, nor did any weapons fire strike the craft, and Hiker managed one final cry of triumph before vanishing from the Cyron system, appearing in the Pravis region of the Cyrian system. He barely managed to breathe a sigh of relief before he saw the Deterrence. Her tortured and scarred hull was barely visible against the dense starfield. Can you establish communications? Already trying. I havent received any response so far. Open a link to the Mandorian station. They would have already responded if they were going to help, but it was worth a try. This is Christopher Baker in IC-1 off of GCV Deterrence. We require emergency assistance. Can you spare a shuttle to tow our vessel back to Galcom HQ in Sol? The stations reply was short and sour. Negative, pilot. We are currently indisposed. Perhaps you havent noticed, but we have a border to protect. Chris lost it. Of course I noticed! We just came from there Exactly! Humans like you are the sole reason that the Gammulans have become so aggressive! Take your war elsewhere, human. We will have no part of it. Chris wondered who had taken a most inappropriate action in this guy's cereal this morning. It is humans like me who repelled the attack against Sol, who sent the Gams packing. If you dont want to lend a hand, then get the hell off my comm system! He cut the signal, then turned to his copilot. Set course for the Rinaal jumpgate. Maybe we can borrow a shuttle and tow her back for repairs. Why dont we just land on the BC? Maybe we can help! Runt said anxiously. You saw the explosion, and you can see the result. The flight deck is useless. We arent going to be able to land. Runt was never able to keep a situation serious for long. They had a job ahead of them, but worrying about the crew on the BC wasnt going to help them get it done. Runt opted for the other choice: criticism. You do realize, of course, that I am going to shoot you. That has got to be the dumbest thing youve ever done! You nearly got us killed! I cant believe you would do something so bone-sick stupid as as as what you just did back there! And another thing He didnt shut up until they docked at Wraith HQ in orbit around Rinaals closest moon. The mammoth station loomed before them, looking for all the world like a giant cross, braced with an outer ring around the central axis, the protrusions of the cross housing the docking bays. This is Interceptor 1 out of GCV Deterrence, requesting immediate docking clearance. Clearance granted, Interceptor. Approach vector seventeen. Hiker acknowledged, piloting the tiny IC into the docking bays via the relayed vector. No sooner had he popped the canopy than a station engineer approached the two pilots. You look like youve been through three kinds of hell. She said. Youre not far off. Hiker said, shutting down the engines, then climbing down from the cockpit. The Deterrence is crippled and awaiting rescue in the Pravis system. We need to get her docked here ASAP. The Mandorian military wont help. Theyve already said as much. I see. She said evenly. Normally, I wouldnt lend you a shuttle, but since you arrived in an Interceptor, its reasonable to assume that your shuttles are unavailable. I guess I have no choice. Dont you need clearance first? No time, pilots. Get aboard. They wont shoot you down if Im around. Theyll know its an emergency if Im with you. Right. Lets get to it, then. Hiker said. Runt took the hint, not even bothering to finish shutting down the IC as he leapt from the copilot seat, landing hard on the flight deck. The tech crew would take care of it. (RP off) ------------------ Commander David Foss, GCV Deterrence [This message has been edited by David Foss (edited 07-15-99).]
  7. David Foss

    First Command

    Okay, I'm finally back on track. Here goes (RP on) Engage hyperdrive! McKay ordered. The Deterrence entered hyperspace, emerging just short of the wormhole to Cyron. The Gammulans were right on top of them, pounding the dying ship with every offensive weapon they had. The ship shook violently, the sounds of an internal explosion raged through the ship. Shields are down! Berringston shouted. Neilson, get those damned shields up! McKay ordered desperately. No can do, the shield is too badly damaged, sir! Neilson shouted through the comm. We have no way of reinforcing the hull! The ship rocked again, an earth-shattering explosion sounding through the ship. Auxiliary life support is gone! Neilson reported. Continue firing, Berringston! McKay shouted. There was nothing else they could do except run with the wind at their backs, putting up whatever defense they could. Another Aestrom fireballed, igniting a tiny sun just off the starboard bow. Hiker let loose a war cry worthy of an army as he lined up the IC on another fighter. Hed just bought the Deterrence a few more seconds. Deterrence, get out of here! Ill cover you as best I can! He shouted. We arent leaving you, Hiker. Get back aboard now! No can do, Lieutenant. Get out of here! They were out of time. She shut off the commlink and turned to Berringston as he said what she had longed to hear. Hyperdrive is charged and ready. Engage hyperdrive! McKay shouted without hesitating. The Deterrence entered hyperspace, emerging seconds later at the wormhole back to Cyrian. The ship edged forward as the Aestroms appeared behind them. Get us out of this damned system! The Deterrence entered the wormhole, emerging on the other side. Back in neutral space, at least. The Gammulans did not pursue. Commander Foss had not returned. The ship was about to blow. Neilson, eject the reactor! Thirty seconds and one spectacular explosion later, Lieutenant McKay activated the internal ships comm. Get those lights back on. She ordered, then spoke into the comm. Damage report, Neilson. His voice was faded. There was barely enough power to run the comm system. The lights had gone out. It was almost impossible to see anything. What do you want first, maam? The bad news or the deadly news? Why break with tradition? Give me the bad news. The bad news is that our external communications were destroyed by that missile. And the deadly news? She knew she wasnt going to like this. The deadly news is that auxiliary life support is toast. The solar reactor is completely useless. There is heavy radiation contamination all over the ship. The main reactor is gone, so we have no power. Both solar panels have also been destroyed and to top things off the remaining shuttles have been too heavily damaged to take shelter in them. Aside from that, atmospheric integrity on the flight deck has been compromised. Cargo bay two is a mess, and we have no parts to repair any of the critical systems. We have no way to maneuver, we cant communicate, we cant take shelter, we cant even make coffee! Give me the summary, Neilson. She said, fed up with the lengthy assessment. By now, several of the crew had managed to find a light or two, shining them about the bridge. His voice sounded harsh, even through the comm system. Unless we get some help and fast, we are dead in two hours. By this time, he had made his way to the flight deck, and was assessing the situation with a heavy heart. Can we use the remaining support craft as a power source? Channel their reactor output into the life support system? She asked. There was a slight pause. Ill need to suit up and take a closer look. Theres not much I can tell from here. Daron chose that moment to call up to the bridge, casting an even darker shadow, if such a thing were possible. Not only was their situation desperate, but she hated the dark. Lieutenant, we have a casualty list from the flight deck. We just got them back to the medibay. Twelve crew members dead, eight injured. Three of them are in critical condition. Im swamped down here, Lieutenant. Would you do me a favor and not send anyone else here for a while? Doctor, we have heavy radiation contamination all over the ship. I cant guarantee that wont happen. But if we cant get help, you wont need to treat radiation burns and trauma. Well all be suffocating instead. Understood. He said gruffly, then switched off. A few minutes later, Neilson had finished his evaluation of the support craft. Can we patch the power into the main life support system? She asked nervously. Well, yes, but not enough to make a difference. The support vessels are virtually useless. As far as I can tell, only one shuttle has an intact power system, and the other shuttles Well, the only systems that are even marginally intact are the displays. Even the ATVs are damaged beyond any form of use, and dont even ask about the Interceptors. Were lucky we didnt lose the pilots on that one. Ill see what I can do, but in all honesty, I don't know what more can be done. Weve sustained too much damage. Even with the shuttles power diverted to the BC, I doubt itll be enough to get main life support online. The way things are going, well be lucky if its even enough for the lights. Try it anyway, Neilson. McKay out. (RP off) Hope I'm still staying within the boundaries. In the event that I'm stretching the rules a bit with this power transfer, it isn't going to do much more than Neilson believes. Hopefully that doesn't constitute an axe to my head If so, I'll revise the post. I have a backup in case that happens. ------------------ Commander David Foss, GCV Deterrence [This message has been edited by David Foss (edited 06-14-99).]
  8. David Foss

    First Command

    Well, here it is, as promised. (RP on) I sat back slowly, feeling every blood cell race through my veins, some being lost over my body and uniform. I painfully forced my eyes open, then looked over at Janice. She had fared much better, all things considered. She was looking right at me with an expression of concern. ÔÇ£Glad you pulled through, Davie.ÔÇØ She said. Her only injury was a nick on the forehead, and that had already been taken care of. She was always lucky. ÔÇ£What about the JÔÇÖs Pride?ÔÇØ I asked. ÔÇ£We came in at a steeper angle. She burned up overhead about two hours ago.ÔÇØ She said. It was her ship. She had spent ten years making that Tarin Mk II her home, and sheÔÇÖd done a fine job at it. Now it was nothing more than burned slag on the surface of this planet, deep in Gammulan space. Just like us. Well, aside from the slag part, we were in the same situation. ÔÇ£IÔÇÖd better get the ATV ready.ÔÇØ I said, standing up. Aside from my chest and face, the rest of me felt fine. She put a hand on my shoulder. ÔÇ£DonÔÇÖt bother. The engine and reactor systems are shot and the cannon is useless. I already tried.ÔÇØ ÔÇ£Did any cargo survive?ÔÇØ ÔÇ£Just the combat kits and some nutripaks.ÔÇØ She said, handing one kit and five packs to me. ÔÇ£Well, weÔÇÖd better get out of here before they come looking. They know there were two ships. IÔÇÖm willing to bet the fighters transmitted the data before we left. IÔÇÖm surprised they havenÔÇÖt found us yet.ÔÇØ IÔÇÖd always had a habit of being MurphyÔÇÖs little toy soldier. Anytime I said something was likely to happen, IÔÇÖd always expect it to be a certain amount of time later. Well, I was right. It was a certain amount of time later. That certain amount never changed. I always had the same amount of time to regret my words: five seconds. The sensors (what was left of them) showed three ATVÔÇÖs coming toward our position. I popped the hatch and we ran for it. We reached the base of a mountain and began climbing it just as the ATVÔÇÖs came over the ridge. They targeted the shuttle and fired without a second thought. The shuttle simply crumpled, flaring into a fireball a few seconds later. One thing about Murphy, though. Any time he screwed with me like this, fate smacked him upside the head. I always found a way out, accidental or otherwise. A cave lay before us, and we made for it as fast as possible. We entered it a few minutes later. ÔÇ£I donÔÇÖt think they saw us.ÔÇØ I said between gasps. Five seconds. Damn him. Five seconds later, shots rang out, bringing the mouth of the cave down in front of us. After the dust settled, we stood in complete darkness. Janice rustled about, retrieving and activating a light. The cave was big, all right. Big and unstable. The dayÔÇÖs recent blasting effort hadnÔÇÖt helped that situation at all, either. I doubted any kind of communication we had available to us would be able to punch through this rock, never mind crossing the light years between us and the Deterrence. This sucked. Janice interrupted my thoughts, clearly amused at the situation. ÔÇ£Now why does this seem familiar?ÔÇØ Eight years ago, we had succeeded in getting lost in a cave. WeÔÇÖd fallen down a crevasse and ended up about two hundred meters down. She had just happened to bring the flashlight with her then, too. The same flashlight she had now. If I didnÔÇÖt know better, I would have said sheÔÇÖd planned this. It took us three days to get out of that mess. We didnÔÇÖt hear the end of it from our friends for three weeks. There was nothing between us. We were just friends. We had been friends since birth, and we would be friends for a long time yet. Of course, like any male human, I was attracted to her, but a relationship between us wouldnÔÇÖt work out. We knew each other too well. We proceeded deeper into the cave, hoping to find another way out. Fate blessed us at last. Seven hours of searching later, we found what we were looking for. Perhaps now we could get a signal to them! Five seconds after emerging from the cave, it was clear that communications would not be possible. The cave was overlooking a Gammulan military base. What next? I wondered. A Gammulan security force? I regretted those words even before I thought them. ÔÇ£Damn you, Murphy.ÔÇØ I said out loud. Janice was about to ask me what IÔÇÖd meant when I spun around, grabbing my sidearm from its holster and hitting a Gammulan soldier in the chest with the first shot. The soldier flew back while Janice and I dodged opposite directions as the other two soldiers returned fire. I took cover behind a large boulder as Janice hid around a jagged wall. They continued to fire at me while Janice blasted one in the face. The third soldier moved to nail Janice as I stood up and blasted him in the chest. With the situation resolved for now, I looked over at Janice. She was staring at me with an expression of shock. ÔÇ£How did you know they were there?ÔÇØ ÔÇ£Predictability.ÔÇØ I said simply. Hey, I donÔÇÖt mind giving cryptic answers when itÔÇÖs the truth! We retreated further into the cave, hopefully to an area where the Gammulans werenÔÇÖt milling about. They had obviously caved in our entrance in order to seal us in. It was just dumb luck (bad luck, that is) that brought us to this particular exit. They had obviously sent in squads of soldiers to find us. The ATVÔÇÖs were probably systematically caving in every entrance they could find to limit our options. It was only a matter of time before they would seal us off completely, find us, or we starved to death. No matter which way you figure it, they would find us eventually, alive or dead. This sucked. ÔÇ£WeÔÇÖve got to get out of here.ÔÇØ ÔÇ£How would you suggest going about that, Davie?ÔÇØ She asked. The tone of hopelessness was in her voice. I didnÔÇÖt like it at all. ÔÇ£LetÔÇÖs start looking for a way out.ÔÇØ ÔÇ£WeÔÇÖre stuck here, Davie. Get with it. ThereÔÇÖs nothing we can do aside from surrendering to them, and IÔÇÖm not willing to do that.ÔÇØ ÔÇ£Then letÔÇÖs kick their arses and steal us a ride home.ÔÇØ ÔÇ£Oh, sure, David. LetÔÇÖs just walk in, guns blazing and take the whole base by force!ÔÇØ ÔÇ£You got a better idea?ÔÇØ She thought a moment, then shook her head. ÔÇ£I donÔÇÖt know how weÔÇÖre going to get out of this, David. At least eight years ago we didnÔÇÖt have this hanging over our heads.ÔÇØ ÔÇ£We will get out of this, Janice. I donÔÇÖt care if I have to slash through every one of those alien scum with my bare hands, we are getting out of this.ÔÇØ ÔÇ£Good hunting, then.ÔÇØ She said, then rolled over to get some sleep, facing toward the wall of our small chamber. She had a good point. It was night. However, she had already called me for the first watch by falling asleep like that. I sat up, facing away from her, looking toward the only way out of our little room. I extinguished the light, knowing that I would hear anyone coming. (RP off) BTW, Akira, if you are going to get the Deterrence out of the mess she's currently in, now would be the time She's pretty messed up right now. ------------------ Commander David Foss, GCV Deterrence [This message has been edited by David Foss (edited 06-07-99).]
  9. David Foss

    First Command

    First off, I must apologize for not posting anything recently. I regret to inform you that there is nothing new today, but I feel as though I must explain myself. The document that contains the story (and more) that I've been working on for this thread got fragged, so I've been set back a bit. I'll post the next section sometime tomorrow. ------------------ Commander David Foss, GCV Deterrence
  10. David Foss

    First Command

    Commander Tringad, I am deeply honored that you would place me beside such great names. However, I am a long way from becoming a writer of their caliber. On the other hand, the longest and best journeys begin with a single step, do they not? Thanks Commander Pherrett, The way things have been going with this, yeah, you do have to be fast. It'll probably slow down a bit fairly soon. Probably. Anyways, on with part six. (RP on) The Deterrence rocked again just before she entered the jumpgate. The universe flashed around them, depositing them near Regis VI. ÔÇ£Jump completed, lieutenant!ÔÇØ Vess shouted. ÔÇ£Engineering, damage report!ÔÇØ McKay yelled over the alarms. ÔÇ£Decompression on S-deck. No casualties. At least we donÔÇÖt have to worry about the radiation anymore.ÔÇØ Neilson reported. ÔÇ£Most of it was cleared away when the hull breached.ÔÇØ He had returned to engineering, and was now working with the rest of his team to keep the ship together. ÔÇ£Tactical, decouple IOD and return fire!ÔÇØ The Deterrence fired again, ripping the shields of the Aestrom. It swung out of the firing line as a second Aestrom swooped in behind the damaged battlecruiser. Fighters swarmed the BC as she desperately defended herself, putting up a meager resistance compared to the superior force presented by a Stormcarrier, five Aestroms and their total compliment of forty-two fighters. Her shields were gone and she was taking a beating. They had succeeded in destroying one Aestrom and fourteen fighters before the jump, bringing the total down to twenty-eight fighters before three ICÔÇÖs were forced to dock. They were so close to neutral space, to Cyrian, and it had been a running battle every step of the way. The engines had been severely damaged in the first attack, and radiation had severely contaminated two decks, one of which had just suffered a serious hull breach. ÔÇ£Set PTA to 20% and concentrate on the fighters.ÔÇØ McKay ordered. ÔÇ£How long until the Interceptors are ready to launch, Flight?ÔÇØ ÔÇ£Two minutes, maÔÇÖam.ÔÇØ Yu replied. ÔÇ£WeÔÇÖll be dead in two minutes, Flight! Get those birds up! Communications, send this message.ÔÇØ To: Commander Junkkari, GCV Karhu From: Lieutenant McKay, GCV Deterrence Subject: S.O.S. Lieutenant McKay in command of GCV Deterrence. Commander Foss MIA, failed to report back from shuttle mission. Gammulan forces attacking in superior numbers. Tactics suggest pending invasion of Terran space. Request immediate assistance! ÔÇ£Send it, Comms!ÔÇØ She said. With the message away, she could only hope they would be able to react in time. She knew they probably wouldnÔÇÖt. It would take them at least a few hours to organize anything concrete, never mind actually dispatching the reinforcements. Besides, if Galcom truly felt that the Gammulans were not intent on domination, then the death of one BC in the name of preserving whatever fragment of peace remained in this galaxy was not important enough to worry about. The bridge shook again as the Deterrence took another direct hit. The ship jolted wildly as a secondary explosion flared, threatening to blow the ship in half. Hiker brought the Interceptor around, lining up on another fighter just before the Deterrence jumped into hyperspace. The fighter turned to follow, but the weakened shields didnÔÇÖt stand up to the assault as he fired his lasers, shredding the tiny craft. One P-21 down, too many fighters to go. The other vessels had jumped, again surrounding the Deterrence as she headed for the wormhole out of this system. The battlecruiser let forth a curtain of fire, shaking slightly as another explosion flared near the center of the ship, threatening to tear the ship apart. So much for landing. ÔÇ£Flight deck destroyed!ÔÇØ Neilson called out. ÔÇ£Casualties?ÔÇØ ÔÇ£Unknown!ÔÇØ McKay called down to the medical bay. ÔÇ£Daron, get a team of medics down to the flight deck immediately!ÔÇØ ÔÇ£WeÔÇÖve already got our hands full treating our own medics! IÔÇÖll go myself!ÔÇØ He said, then closed the connection. ÔÇ£Incoming missile!ÔÇØ Berringston shouted. ÔÇ£Impact in ten seconds!ÔÇØ ÔÇ£Engage EMD! Tell IC-1 to intercept that missile!ÔÇØ ÔÇ£EMD engaged, but itÔÇÖs too late, maÔÇÖam!ÔÇØ Berringston replied. The missile slammed into the aft of the BC, ripping deep into the hull. ÔÇ£Reactor is going critical!ÔÇØ Neilson shouted. ÔÇ£WeÔÇÖve got to dump her in the next thirty seconds or we face a breach!ÔÇØ ÔÇ£Keep it together until we get back to friendly territory! WeÔÇÖve only got a few more to go!ÔÇØ ÔÇ£Aye, maÔÇÖam!ÔÇØ Neilson said, then signed off. ÔÇ£Reinforce the damned cooling system!ÔÇØ Neilson shouted to his crew. ÔÇ£Get that leak under control!ÔÇØ As hard as it was to believe, the engineers seemed to move a bit faster. Systems were failing all over the ship. The way things were going, they would be lucky to have life support in a minute. The hull was barely holding together, and virtually every other system aboard teetered on the edge of failure. He looked up at the reactor core as the telltale signs of a breach made themselves known. The reactor began to hum an insistent whine of death as the octaves rose. The computer warbled a tone, marking the recharge of the hyperdrive engines. ÔÇ£Hyperdrive ready, Lieutenant! Make it fast!ÔÇØ He shouted into the comm. ------------------ Commander David Foss, GCV Deterrence [This message has been edited by David Foss (edited 06-03-99).]
  11. David Foss

    First Command

    Commander Junkkari, Thank you, sir! I'm just glad to finally be a part of Orion Fleet, as well as being able to participate in this epic story. I've been a silent observer for a while, only having recently found my voice. Commander Tringad, Actually, I might do that. Provided, of course, that I can actually finish one of these stories. I've always had trouble finishing them off. There's always a loose end somewhere. The other sci-fi series I am working on was originally just going to be a short story. It was designed to get my thoughts flowing for a game that I was (and still am) designing. They started flowing, all right. My girlfriend sent me a list of titles that I could use for the short story. The short story has now evolved into the beginnings of a novel which is just one part of the series, with the other titles in that list going to seventeen other books in the series. The whole thing will span about forty ears (in the books, not real life). Anyways, without further delay, here's part five. (RP on) I sat down in the shuttle, securing the safety harness and firing up the engines. They came to life, the familiar whine filling my ears as I lifted the shuttle off the deck and guided her toward the yawning doors. I kept a steady hand as the shuttle cleared the launch bay. The doors closed not five seconds later and the Deterrence turned away, heading back to friendly territory. The carriers exited hyperspace on the far side of the planet, thankfully. We had a few minutes. I dropped the transport down, preparing to tractor the Js Pride. Once in position, I hit the switch. Nothing. Just my luck to nab the shuttle that had been damaged by the explosion of the first Stormcarrier. Even the shields were damaged, operating at only twenty percent. I could have lived with a smashed panel or two, but no! It had to be the two systems I needed most. This sucked. I guided the shuttle over top of the transport, easing down until I could see a docking hatch. The shuttle settled with a jolt against the hull of the Js Pride as I hurriedly slipped into a pressure suit. When I was finished, I proceeded through the airlock out onto the hull of the transport. I entered through the docking hatch, pressurized the chamber and entered the transport. Janice fired a shot before I had a chance to react. Fortunately, her aim was off. The shot flashed past me, scorching a black furrow across one of the bulkheads. Janice realized I was not a Gammulan, then lowered her weapon. She didnt have time to say anything before I grabbed her, hauling her back to the airlock, which we both entered hastily. Fearing a hull breach, she had already suited up for it. We moved quickly, exiting the airlock and entering the shuttle. She sat in the copilots chair as I sealed the airlock. I had just sat in the pilots seat when she disengaged the docking systems. I fired the engines, taking us away from the doomed vessel at full speed. I did not get us away from the fighters, however. Two P-21s collapsed the damaged shields in seconds, crippling the engines. Sparks flew from Janices console as I dove the shuttle into the atmosphere. For some reason, the fighters did not follow, instead pulling back to rendezvous with the carriers. They were going after the Deterrence. There was nothing I could do about that aside from making sure that part of Deterrences original compliment, namely the shuttle, got down in more than one piece, but less than five hundred. The shuttle penetrated the upper atmosphere, then bucked as we entered the more turbulent lower atmosphere. The air rushed past the hull, drowning out what little sound the damaged engines made. The damaged systems couldnt even keep us in the air as I fought a losing battle with gravity. I focused on the readouts, all of them telling me the same thing: we were screwed. The rough landscape of Crystar rolled on before us. Just my luck to end up bringing us down over mountainous terrain. This sucked! We cleared the mountains a few minutes later, just a few seconds before the reactor died. The shuttle plummeted to the ground, striking the unforgiving surface at a thirty-degree angle. I heard and felt the bone-chilling introduction of metal to hard rock as the bottom of the shuttle smashed into the ground at the base of a large mountain. We might have bounced, or we could have rolled. I don't know what the final verdict was. I was already out cold from the initial impact. We didnt even have time to yell (RP off) ------------------ Commander David Foss, GCV Deterrence [This message has been edited by David Foss (edited 06-02-99).]
  12. David Foss

    First Command

    Commander Tringad, Actually, I have been told on more than one occasion by my friends, family and especially my girlfriend, to send my work in for both sci-fi and fantasy. Unfortunately, I have yet to finish any of the stories I'm working on. I'm currently focusing on three projects (this one, a fantasy series and another sci-fi series). However, if there are any BC3K books that are published, I would certainly enjoy contributing to them should such an opportunity arise. (RP on) Mayday, mayday! This is Janice Errintha, transport Js Pride requesting immediate assistance! I am under attack by Gammulan forces. Position is Gammula region, heading for Tyrinis/LV-110 jump point. I say again, this is Js Pride under heavy attack requesting immediate assistance! Janice rolled the transport over just as another fighter fired. The shot glanced off her shield, causing no damage. They were getting better, though. She wouldnt last long. Her ship rocked again as another shot penetrated the shield. Current situation is critical! Twelve enemy fighters attacking, six Aestroms and two Stormcarriers close behind. Request immediate support! Data indicates strong possibility of another invasion She looked down at her damage control board and saw the bad news. The hangar was destroyed, and all four shuttles had just been rendered useless. Her weapons were down as well, and her missiles were exhausted. Comm systems were also down from the last shot. The last part of her message hadnt gone through, either. Damn! She screamed as her ship vanished through the jumpgate. The fighters were right behind her, followed a few minutes later by the carriers. Goddamn it! She said she was going to be on this side of the border! Whatd she do? Read the map backwards? I thought angrily. Neilson had also heard the transmission. He was handing me a status report on the consumption of Radine when the signal was received. He paled visibly. He remembered, all right. He knew very well who was making that call. It was the right voice, the right name, but that ship was in the wrong place! I shook the thought aside and began issuing orders. We were currently patrolling Rinaal. Set course for Pravis! Prepare to jump! We are going after that transport! Engage cloaking device! McKay looked up, once again falling back upon the comforting lap of Galcom orders. She didnt even get the our orders out before I turned on her. McKay, that transport will not be lost! Orders or no orders, I will not abandon the Js Pride! Perhaps she was as tired as I was of abandoning people to their fates. Perhaps she was also fed up with the absurdity of our orders. Or, perhaps, she just wanted to get my command booted out the window so she could take over. Whatever the reason, she backed down without another word. In fact, she seemed eager to engage the Gammulans in battle. Vess looked up at me. Sir, itll take us at least twenty minutes to reach the location of her last transmission. Then lets hope she can last for ten. Well meet her in the middle. I dont know how she got into this situation, but well get her out. The Deterrence, against all orders, jumped into the Cryon region, disregarding her orders and entering Gammulan space. Sure enough, ten minutes later, we arrived in the Alpha Gamma system near Crystar. The system was also currently occupied by the Js Pride, twelve fighters, a Stormcarrier and a starbase. Disengage cloack. Launch all ICs. Orders are to screen the Js Pride from enemy attack. Aye, sir. Yu said, issuing the order to scramble. Berringston, arm weapons. Set PTA at 100% and IOD at 70%. Target the Stormcarrier. If we can cause enough damage, maybe we can convince them to recall their fighters in order to protect her. Well take a beating, sir. Aye, that we will, Berringston. But well bloody their noses as well. The Js Pride was orbiting Crystar, attempting an emergency landing. The Deterrence jumped, emerging over the Js Pride, covering her in the protective shadow. The fighters, four P-21 Vandals, four S fighters, two Corsairs and two Interdictors, were right behind her, jump anomalies forming all around the damaged transport. The ICs were already forming a protective circle around her as the Gammulan fighters emerged. A bigger hyperspace anomaly flashed into existence directly ahead, indicating that the Stormcarrier was coming in close to finish the transport. Big mistake. Berringston was ready, standing by to let every offensive system on board rip that carrier to shreds. Sir, the fighters are reacquiring the transport. I watched as the ICs scrambled to intercept the threat. Four against twelve. We would need a more effective screen than this. The Stormcarrier exited hyperspace directly in front of us, presenting just the effective screen we needed. "Berringston, destroy that ship." Berringston fired all weapons at once, and the Stormcarriers shields collapsed seconds later. The Deterrence flew past, the PTA pouring bursts of deadly energy into the carrier, ripping deep into the hull. The Deterrence shook as the Stormcarrier got off a single shot before exploding spectacularly against the backdrop of stars. The Deterrence shook wildly as the shock wave hit, nearly crippling the shields in the process. Damage report! I called out. Tractor beam, transporter and solar reactor inoperative, sir. Main reactor is damaged, but Ive got people on it. Neilson replied. Hed accessed the Logistix Computer from the bridge, not having time to hoof it back to engineering. Shields recharging, currently at 25%. What about the transport? The fighters are retreating, but the transport is also dead. Her engines are damaged. Shes a sitting duck, sir, her orbit is deteriorating. Shell burn up in about three hours if she cant get her engines back. Berringston looked over his instruments a second time. Sir, we have six Aestroms and another Stormcarrier entering the area! ETA two minutes. They are launching fighters! I swore, looking over at McKay. I couldnt leave Janice, but orders said otherwise. So did the numbers. Screw them both. McKay, Im taking shuttle 1. As soon as I clear the launch bay, take the Deterrence back to friendly space. Sir, you cant be serious! There are five carriers bearing down on us! We dont have time! You dont have time. I do. Get this ship out of here as soon as Im clear. I left, ignoring her objections, running full speed for the shuttle bays. (RP off) ------------------ Commander David Foss, GCV Deterrence [This message has been edited by David Foss (edited 06-01-99).]
  13. David Foss

    First Command

    Sorry this took so long. It'll be edited later to make up for any discrepanies that show up. (RP on) I walked down the corridors of the GCV Karhu, the layout and appearance not unlike that of the Deterrence. I made my way to the bridge, then waited patiently. One of the crew approached me. She was young, but I could already tell she had been involved in that black day over Jupiters skies. Commander Foss, Orion Fleet Commander Junkkari is waiting for you. I nodded, and she led me to the Commanders ready room. The door slid open, and Commander Junkkari looked up from his desk. Greetings, Commander. Please have a seat. He said, indicating the chair in front of his desk. I sat down, and he got straight to the point. Ill get straight to the point, Commander. There have been many disturbing reports of unprovoked attacks along the Gammulan border in the past few weeks. Several of our ships have been venturing into their space. Galcom ships have been responding to distress signals from within their territory, and are often critically damaged while rendering aid. Although no Galcom ships have been destroyed, and we are not officially at war with the Gammulans, a lot of people seem to think otherwise, and have taken to conducting hit and run attacks on their own accord, often at the expense of their lives. The outer systems of Gammulan space are too heavily defended as a result of these actions. We are trying to prevent hostilities as much as possible. Our resources are still stretched thin from the recent battle in Sol, and having to move our ships to defend the border in case of attack is costing us too much. Your purpose there is to send a message: that although Galcom is at odds with the Gammulans, we are more interested in keeping territory rather than gaining it. We do not want this conflict to escalate any more than it already has. As such, your orders are to ignore, I say again, ignore any request for assistance if the transmission comes from within Gammulan space. We are pulling several other BCs back, and will be sending the Deterrence to monitor the Cyrian region. I hate giving you the order to abandon lives like this, especially given your exemplary record as CMO aboard the Kevs Star. But this is a critical situation, and you must adhere to these orders. He must have seen my sickened expression. I was a doctor, and he was asking me to ignore calls for help. That went against everything I had ever stood for. Commander, I know this isnt exactly what you had hoped for. However, the Deterrences presence alone will deter many others from making the same mistakes as others. You have a chance to save more lives than you would by charging into those sectors. I shook my head. Sir, I feel it is necessary to inform you that I object to these orders with the strongest possible disdain. He looked up and smiled. You and me both, Commander. I dont like this situation any more than you do. But Galcom needs this done to ensure we dont end up repeating the events of last month all over again. I sure as hell dont want that to happen. I lost enough in that last battle without having to lose it all over again. As much as I hated to admit it, he was right. Although it pained me to acknowledge it, I managed a nod. Understood, sir. Well be on our way right away, though I still protest this arrangement. Well, my protests went unheard as well, Commander. Dont feel like youre alone in this. I left his ready room and headed back to the Deterrence. After securing all supplies and weapons aboard, we left Betelgeuze station for the Cyrian region. It was worse than I thought. Not five minutes after wed entered the region, we received the first distress call. Lets hear it, Jolkowski. Gina routed the signal, and it played over the speakers a moment later. This is Warrens Pass. We are under attack by Gammulan forces. Any friendly ships, please respond! We need immediate assistance! Reflex took over. I jumped to my feet, shouting orders before I heard them. Triangulate the position of that transmission! Engineering, prepare for hyperspace jump! Navigation, as soon as Comms sends you that data, plot a course! McKay, my first officer, looked over at me. Commander, our orders were to ignore any requests for help that did not come from this side of the border. Screw the orders! I snarled. Lives are at stake, Officer! Five lives, Commander! Five lives for the sake of over one-hundred! She had accessed the crew manifest of the Warrens Pass. You would risk so many lives for that transport? Damn the numbers. Thats all it came down to was numbers. The percent chance of one person over another, and in that moment, with those figures, one patient would be saved while another dies. One percentage lower than another and Joe dies instead of Vanessa. Damn the numbers. All stations, belay previous orders. I said, my throat dry. We heard the distress signal three more times before the signal was terminated by a burst of static. Jolkowski calculated the termination was only thirty seconds short of the wormhole leading to this system. Thirty seconds. Debris from the transport was a silent confirmation of what she had told us. Only a few fragments came through, but it was enough. McKay, you have the bridge. I said, then went to my ready room. I watched the debris drift silently by the window. Debris from the forward compartment, the rear cargo hold, the port engine housing fragments of the bridge. I had tapped into the comm system, and heard the desperate pleas of over twelve vessels as their cries for help rang across vast distances, spanning a galaxy and going unheard. No, not unheard. Unheeded. Fifteen distress calls in only the first day. At the same time, over thirty smaller craft, ranging from shuttles to fighters, turned away from the wormhole and went off on other missions. Everything from freight to mercenary contracts. Thirty more voices that we wouldnt have to hear in the next few days. At least thats how long I hoped this internal blockade would last. During the same monotonous string of calls on the second day, I heard the distress call that almost broke my career ------------------ Commander David Foss, GCV Deterrence [This message has been edited by David Foss (edited 06-01-99).]
  14. David Foss

    First Command

    Thanks, Commander! You wanted more, so here it is (RP on) The next hour went by in a flash, as did the christening of the Deterrence. Karl Reines himself was present at the ceremony, and I felt incredibly small at that time. He cast a brief glance, nodding recognition. To think that only two weeks ago, I had been ready to decline the command. Now, despite my fears, part of me was looking forward to stepping onto the bridge of that ship. I turned to my chief engineer. Neilson, I want the reactor up and running within the hour. He looked at me like I was insane. Sir, she is only running on solar power right now. The reactor is still cold. Powering her up that fast could damage the coolant systems, or cause a breach right off the You claim to be the best. Now prove it. I said adamantly. He cast an uncertain glance at me, then signaled the rest of his team to follow him as they left the reception room. The room was an observation area overlooking the newly christened BC. I mingled with the crowd, meeting my second in command and Combat Officer, Kristen McKay, a brilliant and unorthodox Irish lass. The red hair, not unlike Neilsons, curled around her ears, and was the first thing I had noticed. Her dark blue eyes were the second, and freckles being the third. My family was from Scotland. Although Id grown up there, my accent was only noticeable if you knew what to listen for. A ship run by a Scottish commander and an Irish first officer. This crew was in for the ride of their lives. Jonathan Vess was my Navigations officer, a mild mannered lad with black hair, brown eyes, and all the characteristics of a capital ship pilot. He would never touch any craft smaller than a cruiser unless it was with a weapon. Comms Officer Gina Jolkowski, Russian. Her experience aboard the Deterrence in her previous life would be invaluable. Flight Officer Wang Yu, Korean. He had served as a pilot aboard a Nightstar Attack Carrier for two years before receiving a promotion and subsequent assignment to the Deterrence. Tactical Officer Andrew Berringston was from North America, proving himself a tactical genius in his early years at the academy. Medical Officer Eric Daron was from Spain, having an incredible record for one so young only nineteen. Last, but not least, the only non-human member of the command staff, Jerak Tu, a brilliant Vesperon science officer from Canaan. Finally, the time rolled over to zero, and I opened a channel to the engineering section of GCV Deterrence. Neilson, its been an hour, report. I hadnt even finished my sentence before Neilson ran into the reception room panting, out of breath. It took him a minute, but he regained his composure. He didnt hide the look of fear on his face. While he was getting his wind back, I simply stood calmly, waiting for his report. Sir, he said, clearly nervous. His first assignment and he had not been successful. The reactor will take at least another thirty minutes. We took as many short cuts as we could, but there just wasnt enough time. Im sorry, sir. Youre right, Neilson. There wasnt enough time. Neilson looked up at me, now thoroughly confused. Maybe he thought Id dismiss him and get a new chief. But you did prove to me that you are the best. You are the best because you take as many shortcuts as you can without endangering peoples lives. Now, you can start the reactor up at your earliest convenience, and well be ready to go at 2100 hours this evening. The shock of my words sank in, and he stood dumbfounded for several seconds. Aye, sir! Then, as if Id just given him three months leave, he stepped back, saluted and ran out the door. Right on time, I gave the order to take the Deterrence away from Galcom HQ. The bridge was far more spacious than the cramped compartments of the Js Pride. I stood, the deck plates vibrating softly under my feet as the ship pulled away at half-speed. Our orders were to rendezvous with Commander Junkkari of the GCV Karhu, Commanding Officer of the Orion Fleet, at Betelgeuze station in Jupiter orbit. Jupiter. The last major battle (and the largest, as it turned out) in human history occurred within that region not long ago. Commander Junkkaris old vessel, the GCV Predicant, had been the first casualty in a huge battle with the Gammulans. The Insurgent and Galcom fleets, in order to prevent another war between them, had agreed to a prisoner exchange for the life of a Galcom spy who had been discovered. The fleet had agreed, but it wasnt long before all hell broke loose. Traces of cloaked ships almost lead to open hostilities, but it was realized (just in time) to be an alien fleet staging a massive invasion. Had the fleet not caught on in time, all of humanity would have been destroyed. There were very few people who did not know of the legendary defensive battle that was fought for our home system, especially since the battle was so recent. Just over a month ago, humanity had banded together, Insurgent and Galcom alike, in a last attempt to save the home world. Earthcom Forces stationed at Pluto had been all but destroyed, with a good number of Galcom, Insurgent and raider vessels being lost in what had come to be known as the Battles of Jupiter, Neptune and Polaris. The Battle of Jupiter was the largest single battle in space, and the bloodiest of mankind. Even Commander Rattler, better known as Insurgent One, had sacrificed his vessel, the ICV Necromancer, in the service of humanity. Many other Commanders lost their lives, including Commander Ferrok of the previous ship to bear the name Deterrence. The ship had been severely damaged during the opening battle at Jupiter. The life support systems were offline, the hangar decks destroyed, and massive hull breaches exposed most of the crew to the vacuum of space. The rest had barely managed to survive until after the battle. The ship later succumbed to internal fires after friendly forces had beamed the survivors out of danger. All in all, only seven original crewmembers still wandered the decks of this new ship. Even though this ship had been built from the ground up, I could feel a trace of the old crew. Those who had died still wandered these decks as well. Either that or I was going insane. Probably the latter of the two. But Gammulan losses had been even worse than ours had. Virtually their entire fleet had combined with a massive Valkyrie fleet, outnumbering our ships two to one. Yet even those were not enough to turn the might of Terran protection. Even though our losses were heavy, we had destroyed almost their entire fleet. It was later discovered that their target was not earth, for some reason. The deciding battle was fought in close orbit of Neptune, where a group of Insurgent and Earthcom vessels destroyed a number of Gammulan warships. Unfortunately, over fifteen warheads, launched by the Insurgent fleet had nuked the planet, destroying any hope for a lasting peace between Galcom and Insurgent forces. I was as tired of that war as everyone else. I wanted it to end. I was tired of seeing humans fighting humans. Personally, I thought the universe was big enough for everyone, but my thoughts went unheard, as usual. The universe had a really sick sense of humor. The Deterrence jumped to Jupiter without incident, and was alongside Betelgeuze within an hour of leaving Galcom HQ. (RP off) ------------------ Commander David Foss, GCV Deterrence [This message has been edited by David Foss (edited 06-01-99).]
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