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The Oldest Man
Jul 28, 2003





Part One: The Falcon and the Falconer

quote:

System MQ-9-2190, outskirts

Flight briefing room. Chronos read 0430 ship time, which makes this little presentation a prelude to just one thing. Everything is black and white for some reason.

"...Okeanos and Heracles are in agreement that the mass fleet displacement we observed this morning is in response to our forces' diversionary attack at Trieste, 85 lightyears from here. That makes the planet vulnerable to a strike. Okeanos?"

The attack carrier's primary AI chimes in with its gender-neutral, impassive voice, "Thank you, commander. We've analyzed the Web fleet deployments in this system over the last thirty five days of continuous observation and have compiled a list of strike requirements. The primary requirement is that at least eighty five percent of the mobile reserve stationed at this planet must respond to the attack on Trieste or become otherwise occupied. As of this morning, that condition has been satisfied and we are prepared to recommend proceeding with op plan one."

A diagram of the system materalizes in the center of the room. MQ-9-2190, known to the locals as Remonde. The image whirls around as the real-time display shifts to an information graphic depiction of the system's six planets.

One hot-Jupiter type massive gas giant, close in to the star. A very common classification, but almost always prohibitive to the formation of garden worlds.

One ultra-dense debris belt, probably created when tidal interactions between near objects ripped a large terran world apart a billion years ago, give or take. Okeanos sometimes has a tendency to go off-track in mission briefings to discuss stellar cartographical details, but it doesn't look like that's going to happen this time.

A second massive gas giant, Saturn-type, about the same distance from the G-type main sequence star as Mars is from the sun. This is less common.

Three barren proto-planets, ranging in size from Ceres to Mercury. Rich in ferrous minerals, but uninteresting.

One frozen, Neptune-type gas giant. The last planet in the system before the usual assortment of Kuiper objects and other cryogenic potatoes that hurtle around in the dark space between stars.

The display re-centers on the second gas giant and then re-orients to show a cluster of debris rings, moons, and moonlets. It's a complex system, but there's only one object of real interest: MQ-9-2190-2-C, otherwise known as Remonde Prime. A large moon with a dense, near-cryogenic atmosphere and a surprisingly large population of fifteen million. One of the most populous centers of the Great Web, tucked away in a system so unimportant to the UG that they didn't even bother to give it an official name.

This is why four attack carriers have been sitting on the edge of this system for over a month.

"Op plan one: a three-part attack to disrupt the defenses of MQ-9-2190-2-C, destroy its infrastructure, and escape. An occupation mission has been deemed too costly in terms of time and materiel, so this is a hit and run. We're here to eliminate this system's ability to support the rebellion. Our first obstacle: the system still has approximately fifty jump-capable warships of the mobile reserve. Loki will sortie Interceptor 015 Ash to draw them into a running battle around the mineral extraction colonies in the outer system. Once that's done, they'll be subject to light-speed lag in communications when the rest of the system falls under attack and unable to respond in time. However, the moon is still protected by a defense grid of petawatt-class x-ray lasers, which make an assault unfeasible. We need to suppress them, and that task has been assigned to Heracles and Hunter 290 Surt. The lasers are supported by solar collection stations around the hot Jupiter-type inner gas giant. Surt will disable those solar collection stations, opening the primary target for an attack."

Ivana Ilyusha, commander of the Okeanos since before the war. There are rumors that she turned down an opportunity to advance to General Officer after the Battle of Titan. The rumors mostly concern her preference for the immediacy of direct battle.

"The strike mission is ours. Unfortunately, Remonde Prime's dense and opaque atmosphere has made target selection impossible. We know there's a lot of industry down there from the infrared blooms along the equator, but we can't zero in close enough to make a stand-off attack possible. Therefore, we will insert Hunter 425 Red at a high closing pseudo-velocity with the moon. You will enter the atmosphere, identify targets with your ground-scan radar, and destroy them point-blank with your main gun. After two minutes and twenty seconds, your velocity will carry you out of the moon's atmosphere, and you will ripcord home," the commander rattles this off by rote, pointing to the graphical display of the planned attack. It's going to be a rough ride.

"Our projected window with the mobile reserve is under nine minutes. We also don't know how quickly the solar collectors will be restored. So, we will not be sticking around for a re-attack or post battle damage assessment. Once you ripcord back to the cradle, we displace for Trieste to assist our forces there. You know that I don't like this shoot-and-scoot crap, but central command has put a hell of lot on the line to make this possible and we're only getting one chance."

"By the way, there are some whispers that this place was the source of the atmospheric incendiary that was used against Earth six years ago. But I don't have the clearance for that," she says, staring at Alarus, "So I can only speculate."

"Rakshasi and Sentinel 990 Acal will provide fleet security. Questions?"

pre:
Hunter-Class fast attack ship
TL: 12^
SM +8, streamlined hull (170 ft, 1,000 tons lwt)
dST: 70
dHP: 70
HT: 12
DR: 900 Front, 600 Side/rear (hardened 1)
Hnd/SR: -1/5
Air performance: 2,500 mph top speed, accel 10, Hnd +1, SR 5

Options: Total automation

Front Hull
[1] Hardened Armor, Exotic Laminate (dDR 30)
[2] Hardened Armor, Exotic Laminate (dDR 30)
[3] Hardened Armor, Exotic Laminate (dDR 30)
[4!] Spinal Battery: Improved Rapid Fire 10cm Gravitic Railgun
[5] Tactical Comm/Sensor Array (Rtg 11)
[6] Defensive ECM

Central Hull
[1] Hardened Armor, Exotic Laminate (dDR 30)
[2] Hardened Armor, Exotic Laminate (dDR 30)
[3] Control Pods
[4!] Medium Battery: 1x 100MJ Imp Antiparticle Beam, 2x 10MJ VRF Graser
[5] Cargo, 50t (4000 rd railgun magazine)
[6!] Ripcord Device
[core!] Spinal Battery

Rear Hull
[1] Hardened Armor, Exotic Laminate (dDR 30)
[2] Hardened Armor, Exotic Laminate (dDR 30)
[3!] Spinal Battery
[4!] Contragravity Lifter
[5] Fuel Tank, Hydrogen (dV 10,000 mps)
[6!] Total Conversion Torch Drive, 1G acceleration
[core] Reactor, Total Conversion (5 pp)

The Oldest Man fucked around with this message at Oct 20, 2016 around 04:22

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Ambivalent
Oct 14, 2006



Officer Su-kyung Moon

She’s somewhere admiring the gentle swirls in the interior gas giant, casually digesting the plans for the strike. Personally, she suspected strikes in and around population centers of fifteen million tended to cultivate the ability to support a rebellion, but she takes the meaning – the ability to offer significant resistance and armed insurrection. No one else seems likely to appreciate her quibble, so she keeps it to herself.

No one ever accused her of being a less than apt pupil and she does well to take in the rest of the operation. But when it gets to the in-atmosphere strike, a frown crosses her face. She whispers to Lin, the officer who shares similar duties on Surt and gets in a bit of a back and forth with him while the briefing continues. Waiting for the call for questions, she offers hers. “Commander,” Moon stands, “I have a question about target selection. With that approach, Red’s window for recognition while we can still direct weapons systems is going to be tight. I mean, barring extensive construction below the surface, you know how these colonies develop on moons like this - in those big snarls with everything sort of clustered. Is it just going to be Red’s judgment or do we have guidelines for anything in particular we should be looking for?”

Unasked, but buried in the question, is her concern about the population centers. Has command made the judgment that they’re accepting the ‘collateral damage?’ How much is finesse valued over effectiveness?

pre:
Name: Moon Su-kyung
Race: Human

Attributes [110]
ST 11 [10]
DX 12 [40]
IQ 14 [40]
HT 12 [20]

HP 11
Will 13
Per 13
FP 12

Basic Lift 24
Damage 1d-1/1d+1

Basic Speed 6
Basic Move 6

Ground Move 6
Water Move 1

Social Background
TL: 12 [0]
Cultural Familiarities: 
Languages: 

Advantages [190]
Biological Operating System Implant (BOS) [8]
Combat Reflexes (Enhanced Time Sense) (Preparation Required (1 minute); Temporary Disadvantage (Electrical); 
        Temporary Disadvantage (Maintenance, 1 Person, Weekly)) [25]
Doesn't Breathe (Oxygen Storage (x300)) [18]
Fit (Very Fit) [15]
G-Experience (10) [10]
High Pain Threshold [10]
Metabolism Control (Biological Operating System Implant) (1) [5]
Radiation Tolerance (PF 20) [20]
Resistant (Acceleration) (Rare) (+8) [2]
Resistant (Sickness) (Common) (+8) [7]
Telecommunication (Radio) (Reduced Range (x1/10); Secure; Sensie) [17]
Unitary Gov Military (2) [10]
Wireless Neural Interface [17]
 - Increase IQ [20]
 - Empathy 1 [5]
 - Attractive [4]
 - Reputation 3: Style & Life Social Media Celebrity (Young People, Sometimes) [4]
 - Ghost Whisperer 3 [15]
   (Computer Programming (AI), Detect Lies (Per/H), Fast-Talk, Psychology (AI), Teaching (AI), Computer Hacking (AI), +1 to Reaction with AIs)

Perks [1]
Alcohol Tolerance [1]
Deep Sleeper [1]
No Hangover [1]
Sanitized Metabolism [1]

Disadvantages [-45]
Duty (Unitary Gov) (15 or less (almost always)) (Extremely Hazardous; Involuntary) [-25]
 Reluctant Killer [-5]
 Charitable [-15]
 
Quirks [-5]
 Congenial [-1]
 Imaginative [-1]
 Dislikes: UGM Uniforms [-1]
 Inquisitive [-1]
 Documents Mundane Things For Her Followers [-1] 

Skills [50]
Artillery/TL12 (Beams) IQ/A - IQ-1 13 [1]
Artillery/TL12 (Cannon) IQ/A - IQ-1 13 [1]
Beam Weapons/TL12 (Pistol) DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Beam Weapons/TL12 (Rifle) DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Computer Operation/TL12 IQ/E - IQ+1 15 [2]
Electronics Operation/TL12 (Communications) IQ/A 15 [4]
Electronics Operation/TL12 (Electronic Warfare) IQ/A - IQ+1 15 [4]
Electronics Operation/TL12 (Sensors) IQ/A - IQ/A 14 [2]
Expert Skill (Military Science) IQ/H - IQ-2 12 [1]
First Aid/TL12 (Human) IQ/E - IQ+1 15 [2]
Free Fall DX/A - DX+1 13 [4]
Gunner/TL12 (Beams) DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Gunner/TL12 (Cannon) DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Guns/TL12 (Pistol) DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Guns/TL12 (Rifle) DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Judo DX/H - DX-2 10 [1]
Leadership IQ/A - IQ/A 14 [2]
Mechanic/TL12 (Hunter-class) IQ-1 13 [1]
Navigation/TL12 (Space) IQ/A - IQ-1 13 [1]
Observation Per/A - Per-1 12 [1]
Piloting/TL12 (Aerospace) DX/A - DX-1 11 [1]
Piloting/TL12 (High-Performance Spacecraft) DX/A - DX-1 11 [1]
Soldier/TL12 IQ/A - IQ+0 14 [2]
Spacer/TL12 IQ/E - IQ+1 15 [2]
Vacc Suit/TL12 DX/A - DX+0 12 [2]
 Computer Hacking/TL12 (AI) IQ/VH - IQ-3 14 [2]
 Computer Programming/TL12 (AI) IQ/H - IQ-2 16 [2]
 Computer Programming/TL12 IQ/H - IQ-1 13 [2]
 Cooking IQ/A - IQ 14 [2]
 Detect Lies Per/H - Per 16 [4]
 Diplomacy IQ/H - IQ-2 12 [1]
 Electronics Repair/TL12 (Computer) IQ/A - IQ 14 [2]
 Electronics Operation/TL12 (Media) IQ/A - IQ-1 13 [1]
 Current Affairs (Pop Culture) IQ/E - IQ 14 [1]
 Connoisseur (Fashion) IQ/A - IQ-1 14 [2]
 Fast-Talk IQ/A - IQ-1 15 [1]
 Mathematics (Computer Science) IQ/H - IQ-2 12 [1]
 Psychology (AI) IQ/H - IQ-2 16 [2]
 Psychology (Human) IQ/H - IQ-1 13 [2]
 Teaching (AI) IQ/A - IQ-1 16 [1]
 Public Speaking IQ/A - IQ-1 13 [1]
 Engineer (Robotics) IQ/H - IQ-1 13 [2]
 Engineer (Electronics) IQ/H - IQ-1 13 [2]
 Electronics Repair/TL12 (Sensors) IQ/A - IQ 14 [2]
 

Stats [110] Ads [190] Disads [-45] Quirks [-5] Skills [50] = Total [300]

Ambivalent fucked around with this message at Oct 27, 2015 around 00:51

The Oldest Man
Jul 28, 2003



"I understand your concern, but Remonde Prime is a cyberdemocracy. The war ethics board declared the entire population hostile in a sealed judgment before we came here."

A display pane opens next to the mission planning, showing the judgment and supporting ethical calculus. An uncorrupted cyberdemocracy requires that a majority of the population directly participate in all government decisions by electronic vote, including operational war planning. By a reasonable justification, such a state engaged in a war has no civilians. All members are culpable.

"Our objective is to cause maximum damage. You'll be targeting anything that looks worth the ammunition to destroy including industrial facilities, government complexes, and population centers."

Ambivalent
Oct 14, 2006



Officer Moon

There’s a pause. Hesitation. Her eyes roam over the judgment, and finally she nods, “Not a problem then, understood.” All said with a little more enthusiasm than she actually feels. She quickly looks down and takes her seat. There’s a time and place to argue the point to argue the ethics board ought to have ruled differently. She wishes it’d been yesterday. Maybe it’ll be tomorrow. But it isn’t here and now, and it isn’t her job, not yet. Lin from Surt whispers something and she smirks in spite of herself.

aldantefax
Oct 10, 2007

ALWAYS BE MECHFISHIN'

Carl von Brandt

If there was any indication that he was looking to get some kind of weird revenge for all of the First Garden based off of the commander's statement about the Earth weapon, there was no actual register on Carl's face. No intel on the ground concerning resistance. Given available flight solutions with available data, he notes down in his flight log, there is a possibility there may be anywhere from no AAA to a full on barrage waiting. There's some flexibility to account for unknowns, but the timeframe is very tight. Lots of things to go wrong. Even if he doesn't want to think about it, willful ignorance is something the Astrogator cannot afford.

"Standard maneuvering protocol should be sufficient for this - no questions from navigation."

He glances over at Moon, raising an eyebrow at her clarifications, but he closes his eyes briefly to sort and file away the information from the briefing.



pre:
Name: Carl von Brandt
Race: Human

Attributes [110]
ST 11 [10]
DX 12 [40]
IQ 13 [40] (IQ includes +1 from 'Extra IQ')
HT 12 [20]

HP 11
Will 13
Per 13
FP 12

Basic Lift 24
Damage 1d-1/1d+1

Basic Speed 6
Basic Move 6

Ground Move 6
Water Move 1

Social Background
TL: 12 [0]
Cultural Familiarities: 
Languages: 

Advantages [162]
Biological Operating System Implant (BOS) [8]
Combat Reflexes (Enhanced Time Sense) (Preparation Required (1 minute); Temporary Disadvantage (Electrical);
    Temporary Disadvantage (Maintenance, 1 Person, Weekly)) [25]
Doesn't Breathe (Oxygen Storage (x300)) [18]
Extra IQ (1) (Affects IQ) [20]
Fit (Very Fit) [15]
G-Experience (10) [10]
High Pain Threshold [10]
Metabolism Control (Biological Operating System Implant) (1) [5]
Radiation Tolerance (PF 20) [20]
Resistant (Acceleration) (Rare) (+8) [2]
Resistant (Sickness) (Common) (+8) [7]
Telecommunication (Radio) (Reduced Range (x1/10); Secure; Sensie) [17]
Unitary Gov Military (2) [10]
Wireless Neural Interface [17]

Perks [1]
Alcohol Tolerance [1]
Deep Sleeper [1]
No Hangover [1]
Sanitized Metabolism [1]

Disadvantages [-40]
Duty (Unitary Gov) (15 or less (almost always)) (Extremely Hazardous; Involuntary) [-25]
Enemy (Rival Astrogator) (More powerful than the PC) (9 or less; Rival) [-10]
Workaholic [-5]

Quirks [-5]
Careful [-1]
Code of Honor [-1]
Nosy [-1]
Proud [-1]
Vow (Reach the top, or die trying) [-1]

Skills [72]
Artillery/TL12 (Beams) IQ/A - IQ-1 12 [1]
Artillery/TL12 (Cannon) IQ/A - IQ-1 12 [1]
Astrobatics DX/H - DX+0 12 [4]
Beam Weapons/TL12 (Pistol) DX/E - DX+1 13 [2]
Beam Weapons/TL12 (Rifle) DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Computer Operation/TL12 IQ/E - IQ+1 14 [2]
Electronics Operation/TL12 (Communications) IQ/A - IQ-1 12 [1]
Electronics Operation/TL12 (Electronic Warfare) IQ/A - IQ-1 12 [1]
Electronics Operation/TL12 (Sensors) IQ/A - IQ-1 12 [1]
Expert Skill (Military Science) IQ/H - IQ-2 11 [1]
First Aid/TL12 (Human) IQ/E - IQ+0 13 [1]
Free Fall DX/A - DX+2 14 [8]
Games (Go) IQ/E - IQ+0 13 [1]
Gunner/TL12 (Beams) DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Gunner/TL12 (Cannon) DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Guns/TL12 (Pistol) DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Guns/TL12 (Rifle) DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Judo DX/H - DX-2 10 [1]
Leadership IQ/A - IQ-1 12 [1]
Mechanic/TL12 (Hunter-class) IQ/A - IQ-1 12 [1]
Navigation/TL12 (Jump Drive) IQ/A - IQ-1 12 [1]
Navigation/TL12 (Space) IQ/A - IQ-1 12 [1]
Observation Per/A - Per-1 12 [1]
Piloting/TL12 (Aerospace) DX/A - DX+3 15 [12]
Piloting/TL12 (High-Performance Spacecraft) DX/A - DX+3 15 [11]
Soldier/TL12 IQ/A - IQ+0 13 [2]
Spacer/TL12 IQ/E - IQ+1 14 [2]
Strategy (Space) IQ/H - IQ+1 14 [8]
Vacc Suit/TL12 DX/A - DX+0 12 [2]

Stats [110] Ads [162] Disads [-40] Quirks [-5] Skills [72] = Total [300]

aldantefax fucked around with this message at Jan 11, 2015 around 08:26

Jenkem Delivery
Feb 8, 2005

Death created time to grow the things that it would kill

Alarus Za'al




Alarus turns to Moon and feels his jaw tense up ever so slightly at her question. Really? This is not a good sign when one of your crewmates doesn't appear to have her head in the game. He turns back to Commander Ilyusha and nodded thoughtfully at her answer, hoping Moon doesn't get on her bad side and put the crew on the Commander's poo poo list. The last thing they needed was Ms. Social Media Starlet throwing a million questions out then posting it for her whole homeworld to see.

Alarus clears his head and returns to the task at hand. He quickly absorbs and analyzes the data, hand wrapped around his lower chin in a thinker's pose. He looks to the 85% figure as the AI mentions the forces distracted by the attack on the mining colonies. "So what percentage of the mobile reserve is left if the threshold is 85%? Also, what kind of Orbital and Atmospheric Defenses can we expect to encounter? Do they have a planetary single AI-defense system or a Multi-AI daisy chain defense grid?" Hopefully someone in fleet had done some research on the remaining defenses, although from the sounds of it the atmosphere is hampering scanning and recon efforts but it was worth a shot.


pre:
Name: Alarus Za'al
Race: Human

Attributes [130]
ST 11 [10]
DX 12 [40]
IQ 13 [60]
HT 12 [20]

HP 11
Will 13
Per 13
FP 12

Basic Lift 24
Damage 1d-1/1d+1

Basic Speed 6
Basic Move 6

Ground Move 6
Water Move 1

Social Background
TL: 12 [0]
Cultural Familiarities: 
Languages: 

Advantages [167]
Biological Operating System Implant (BOS) [8]
Combat Reflexes (Enhanced Time Sense) (Preparation Required (1 minute); Temporary Disadvantage (Electrical); 
Temporary Disadvantage (Maintenance, 1 Person, Weekly)) [25]
Cyberneticist (3) [15]
Doesn't Breathe (Oxygen Storage (x300)) [18]
Fit (Very Fit) [15]
G-Experience (10) [10]
High Pain Threshold [10]
Metabolism Control (Biological Operating System Implant) (1) [5]
Radiation Tolerance (PF 20) [20]
Resistant (Acceleration) (Rare) (+8) [2]
Resistant (Sickness) (Common) (+8) [7]
Security Clearance (2) [10]
Telecommunication (Radio) (Reduced Range (x1/10); Secure; Sensie) [17]
Unitary Gov Military (2) [10]
Wireless Neural Interface [17]

Perks [1]
Alcohol Tolerance [1]
Deep Sleeper [1]
No Hangover [1]
Sanitized Metabolism [1]

Disadvantages [-55]
Callous [-5]
Duty (Unitary Gov) (15 or less (almost always)) (Extremely Hazardous; Involuntary) [-25]
Enemy (Rival Intelligence Officer) (Equal in power to the PC) (9 or less; Rival) [-5]
Overconfidence (12 or less) [-5]
Secret (Still employed by Unitary Gov't Intelligence) (Utter Rejection) [-10]
Workaholic [-5]

Quirks [-5]
Curses while working/concentrating [-1]
Hates clutter [-1]
Lucky Charm [-1]
Morning Routine [-1]
Placeholder Quirk [-1]

Skills [62]
Artillery/TL12 (Beams)                     IQ/A - IQ-1 12 [1]
Artillery/TL12 (Cannon)                    IQ/A - IQ-1 12 [1]
Beam Weapons/TL12 (Pistol)                 DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Beam Weapons/TL12 (Rifle)                  DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Brainwashing (Brain Hacking)/TL12          IQ/H - IQ-1 12 [2]
Computer Hacking/TL12                      IQ/VH - IQ-1 15 [4] (+3 from Cyberneticist)
Computer Operation/TL12                    IQ/E - IQ+0 16 [1] (+3 from Cyberneticist)
Computer Programming/TL12                  IQ/H - IQ-1 15 [2] (+3 from Cyberneticist)
Computer Programming (AI)                  IQ/H - IQ-1 15 [2] (+3 from Cyberneticist)
Cryptography/TL12                          IQ/H - IQ+0 13 [4]
Detect Lies                               Per/H - Per-1 12 [2]
Electronics Operation/TL12 (Communications) IQ/A - IQ-1 12 [1]
Electronics Operation/TL12 (Electronic Warfare) IQ/A - IQ+1 14 [4]
Electronics Operation/TL12 (Sensors)       IQ/A - IQ-1 12 [1]
Expert Skill (Military Science)            IQ/H - IQ-2 11 [1]
Fast TalK                                  IQ/A - IQ+0 13 [2]
First Aid/TL12 (Human)                     IQ/E - IQ+0 13 [1]
Free Fall                                  DX/A - DX+1 13 [4]
Gunner/TL12 (Beams)                        DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Gunner/TL12 (Cannon)                       DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Guns/TL12 (Pistol)                         DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Guns/TL12 (Rifle)                          DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Intelligence Analysis/TL12                 IQ/H - IQ+0 13 [4]
Interrogation                              IQ/A - IQ+0 13 [2]
Judo                                       DX/H - DX-2 10 [1]
Leadership                                 IQ/A - IQ-1 12 [1]
Mechanic/TL12 (Hunter-class)               IQ/A - IQ-1 12 [1]
Navigation/TL12 (Space)                    IQ/A - IQ-1 12 [1]
Observation                                Per/A Per-1 12 [1]
Piloting/TL12 (Aerospace)                  DX/A - DX-1 11 [1]
Piloting/TL12 (High-Performance Spacecraft) DX/A - DX-1 11 [1]
Research/TL12                              IQ/A - IQ+1 14 [4]
Soldier/TL12                               IQ/A - IQ+0 13 [2]
Spacer/TL12                                IQ/E - IQ+1 14 [2]
Vacc Suit/TL12                             DX/A - DX+0 12 [2]

Stats [130] Ads [167] Disads [-55] Quirks [-5] Skills [62] = Total [300]

The Oldest Man
Jul 28, 2003



"The remaining ships are scattered between the solar collection array at the inner gas giant, Remonde Prime itself, and the outer system mining colonies. Currently, there are twenty ships protecting the array, a dozen protecting Remonde Prime, and another twenty split between a dozen smaller colonies," Commander Ilyusha replies, "But our attack plan is designed to draw forces away from Remonde Prime before you begin the strike. We believe there will only be a token force left there by the time you engage. Their defense commanders must know as well as we do that the moon is impossible to protect without that laser defense grid online, so they should commit most of their available forces to the action at the solar array."

"We also don't know the specifics of their defense network. Assume the usual array of aerospace interceptors and hypervelocity missiles. Due to the moon's low gravity, there's also a possibility that you may be engaged by surface mass drivers. However, it shouldn't be anything you can't handle. Your high rate of closure will make it extremely difficult for the defenses to engage you successfully."

DocBubonic
Mar 11, 2003

Tempora mutantur, et nos mutamur in illis

Marek Capek

He listened, but didn't say anything in response. The higher ups knew what they were doing and they had AIs to figure out all the possible complications. What would a petty officer like him bring to the conversation? As long as everyone did their job, the mission would go off as expected. He didn't care for Moon's attitude towards the mission. Enemy casualties? They didn't worry about casualties when they hit earth, why should we worry about inflicting casualties on them. If we hurt them bad enough, then we can force them to capitulate. No reason to show them any mercy until they are ready to surrender. Hearing Carl speak up, he decided it was best to offer his acknowledgement of information and understanding.

"I'm all set. Seems like everything is in order."

pre:
Name: Marek Capek
Race: Human

Attributes [110]
ST 11 [10]
DX 12 [40]
IQ 12 [40]
HT 12 [20]

HP 11
Will 12
Per 13
FP 12

Basic Lift 24
Damage 1d-1/1d+1

Basic Speed 6
Basic Move 6

Ground Move 6
Water Move 1

Social Background
TL: 12 [0]
Cultural Familiarities: 
Languages: 

Advantages [142]
Biological Operating System Implant (BOS) [8]
Combat Reflexes (Enhanced Time Sense) (Preparation Required (1 minute); Temporary
Disadvantage (Electrical); Temporary Disadvantage (Maintenance, 1 Person, Weekly))[25]
Doesn't Breathe (Oxygen Storage (x300)) [18]
Fit (Very Fit) [15]
G-Experience (10) [10]
High Pain Threshold [10]
Metabolism Control (Biological Operating System Implant) (1) [5]
Radiation Tolerance (PF 20) [20]
Resistant (Acceleration) (Rare) (+8) [2]
Resistant (Sickness) (Common) (+8) [7]
Telecommunication (Radio) (Reduced Range (x1/10); Secure; Sensie) [17]
Unitary Gov Military (2) [10]
Wireless Neural Interface [17]

Perks [1]
Alcohol Tolerance [1]
Deep Sleeper [1]
No Hangover [1]
Sanitized Metabolism [1]

Disadvantages [-45]
Callous [-5]
Duty (Unitary Gov) (15 or less (almost always)) (Extremely Hazardous; Involuntary)[-25]
Fanaticism (Unitary Government) [-15]

Quirks [-5]
Laid back about appearance [-1]
Likes being tanned
Code of Honor (Soldier) [-1]
Dislikes Crowds [-1]
Dislikes Open Spaces [-1]

Skills [97]
Artillery/TL12 (Beams) IQ/A - IQ+2 14 [8]
Artillery/TL12 (Cannon) IQ/A - IQ+2 14 [8]
Beam Weapons/TL12 (Pistol) DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Beam Weapons/TL12 (Rifle) DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Computer Operation/TL12 IQ/E - IQ+2 14 [4]
Computer Programming/TL12 IQ/H - IQ-1 11 [2]
Diplomacy IQ/H - IQ+0 12 [4]
Electronics Operation/TL12 (Communications) IQ/A - IQ+0 12 [2]
Electronics Operation/TL12 (Electronic Warfare) IQ/A - IQ+0 12 [2]
Electronics Operation/TL12 (Security) IQ/A - IQ+0 12 [2]
Electronics Operation/TL12 (Sensors) IQ/A - IQ+1 13 [4]
Expert Skill (Military Science) IQ/H - IQ+0 12 [4]
Fast-Talk IQ/A - IQ+1 13 [4]
First Aid/TL12 (Human) IQ/E - IQ+0 12 [1]
Free Fall DX/A - DX+2 14 [8]
Gunner/TL12 (Beams) DX/E - DX+3 15 [8]
Gunner/TL12 (Cannon) DX/E - DX+3 15 [8]
Guns/TL12 (Pistol) DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
Guns/TL12 (Rifle) DX/E - DX+0 12 [1]
History (Modern Era)IQ/H - IQ-1 11 [2]
Intimidation Will/A - Will-1 11 [1]
Judo DX/H - DX-2 10 [1]
Karate DX/H - DX-2 10 [1]
Leadership IQ/A - IQ-1 11 [1]
Literature IQ/H - IQ-2 10 [1]
Machinist/TL12 IQ/A - IQ+0 12 [2]
Mechanic/TL12 (Carrier-class) +2
Mechanic/TL12 (Hunter-class) IQ/A - IQ-1 11 [1]
Navigation/TL12 (Space) IQ/A - IQ-1 11 [1]
Observation Per/A - Per+0 13 [2]
Piloting/TL12 (Aerospace) DX/A - DX-1 11 [1]
Piloting/TL12 (High-Performance Spacecraft) DX/A - DX-1 11 [1]
Psychology (AI) IQ/H - IQ+1 13 [8]
Savoir-Faire (Military) IQ/E - IQ+0 12 [1]
Scrounging Per/E - Per+1 14 [2]
Soldier/TL12 IQ/A - IQ+0 12 [2]
Spacer/TL12 IQ/E - IQ+3 15 [8]
Strategy (Space)IQ/H - IQ-2 10 [1]
Tactics IQ/H - IQ-1 11 [2]
Vacc Suit/TL12 DX/A - DX+2 14 [8]

Stats [110] Ads [142] Disads [-45] Quirks [-5] Skills [97] = Total [300]

Updated 10/26/2015

DocBubonic fucked around with this message at Oct 26, 2015 around 19:09

Jenkem Delivery
Feb 8, 2005

Death created time to grow the things that it would kill

Alarus Za'al

Alarus nods at the Commander's answer and cracks a half smile. "Don't think it's anything ol' Red can't handle, even if there may a surprise or two waiting." he says confidently. He glances around at the other crew members. "I guess my one last question is if we have a target type priority list to determine the highest value targets. Once we get eyes on I'll start feeding targets to Red and the crew and we can get down to work. You'd be surprised what you can get done in 9 minutes." he says with a slight chuckle.

aldantefax
Oct 10, 2007

ALWAYS BE MECHFISHIN'

Carl

"The only surprises I like are the ones involving getting an extra helping of dessert for dinner. Any surprises while on sortie are likely to not be sweet," he remarks dryly. "Also, to clarify - we're actually only going to be within weapons engagement range for 140 seconds, not the 9 minutes you just noted, Officer Za'al. I intend to remain punctual for both entry and egress." He would let Marek and Alarus sort out whatever target prioritization was required. In most of the flight solutions he has estimates for, Carl will certainly be more than occupied with his own duties to worry about what hard object should be neutralized.

The Oldest Man
Jul 28, 2003



"Industrial facilities are your highest priority. Halt engram insertion."

blip

They say the hardest thing about learning to fly a Hunter-class is learning to breathe liquid. At one point, they even tried a gene mod that would eliminate the mammalian drowning reflex, but had to cancel the program after one of the test subjects drowned in his bath tub. Waking up in the shock pod immersed in liquid and breathing it is a bit disconcerting to say the least.

At least the world is in color again. The inside of the carrier launch cradle fills every angle on the external cameras, an ovoid capsule of clinical white and military grey. At the rear, through the projection aperture, the whirling bulk of the jump drive is visible. It's already building toward criticality.

And Red is waiting in the link. "Welcome back, everyone. Please remain calm and wait for the engram disorientation to recede. Everything is alright."

"Surt reports mission success; enemy air defenses in the vicinity of Remonde Prime have been suppressed and Ash continues to hold a large fraction of enemy mobile forces in the outer system. All ship systems are in the green. We have a full fuel and ammunition load. A three one strike mix of AM and AP rounds has been loaded."

"We'll be commencing our sortie in approximately fifty seconds."

Jenkem Delivery
Feb 8, 2005

Death created time to grow the things that it would kill

Alarus Za'al

Alarus slowly opened his eyes in the liquid filled shock pod. His body immediately tensed up as the feeling of being submerged in liquid gripped him. His chest tightened with fear as he clenched his teeth, his lower, primal brain taking over as reflex kicked in momentarily. He closed his eyes and tried to concentrate on the charm around his neck. "1...2....3... exhale slighly then inhale" he thought, coaching himself through the process of orienting to the pod. His first couple of breaths were shallow as he tried to relax his diaphragm and chest muscles. Hyperventilating was never fun, but almost everyone did it when they got their first taste of the "kiddie pool" as his classmates called it. Some reference to an old toy.

He took a few more seconds to collect and orient himself. Nothing like the feeling of helplessly drowning to clear the head and get one in the "zone". He began working through the neural interface, pulling up his data and prepping the e-warfare suite and scanning sensors. "Prepping for sortie, Red. Good to be back."

Ambivalent
Oct 14, 2006



Moon

Sliding back into awareness, it takes only a few moments to suppress her reflexes and coax her muscles into relaxing. Neuroplasticity being what it is, and as many operations as they’ve been through already, it isn’t so bad. Nothing compared to that weightless feeling in the gut, when you know you’re inbound and there’s no possibility of any call to abort. Relax, you’re a natural. You’re a pro. As the familiar impression of Red registers, welcoming her back, she’s all too happy to greet the intelligence, “Hope you didn’t get too bored without us.” Conversational address with the software isn’t a standard, but in Sangdo, the saying goes ‘address someone with the respect due the person you hope for them to be.’ It sounds more elegant in the native tongue, but that goes for children, and for Su’s perspective, AIs as well.

Getting her hands on data is the best way to anchor herself and quell any flightiness even if it is only the vitals of the crew, last diagnostics of Red’s systems, solar map. Remonde Prime. If Lin and his crew had a clean run, and they were forty-eight seconds from go, then Surt should be… there, just making return from the collectors. There's a nagging sensation, a concern tugging at the back of her mind. But that is something to be unpacked later.

“We have a lot to do in a very short amount of time, Red.” Calling up line graphs measuring Red’s ‘brain activity’, she runs over the system in short order, “I think rapid acquisition will be as, if not more important than precision but that's Marek's call. Still, Command’s sending us over for more than a ‘how do you do’.” Tension melts away as she executes some of her pre-flight configuration routines, culling away unnecessary feeds of data, diversions, the game she'd been running, and the two articles she'd been reading, then arranging her link feed just how she prefers. “There’ll be a lot of data coming at all of us. If I were to suggest, Red, then I’d say Marek and Carl’s link-feed should be given priority for the run. Sound good?”

Ambivalent fucked around with this message at Jan 12, 2015 around 23:35

aldantefax
Oct 10, 2007

ALWAYS BE MECHFISHIN'

Carl

He closed his eyes and allowed the sensory change to return back to normal. "Red, please calculate flight solution from the briefing and prepare evasion maneuvers from pattern series 3," he starts - first vocally, then, remembering he's in a vat of embryonic fluid, through his neural link. Still need to get used to that. The particular series that Carl had selected is a fairly conservative one. With the ground defenses being unknown, he had to assume the worst case scenario. He could always adjust to series 1 if things actually went smoothly. Stick to the flight plan, and hopefully in the next eleven minutes he'd be back on the carrier and out of the goop enjoying a bath. That was always the best part of a sortie - getting out and cleaning off the goo.

The Oldest Man
Jul 28, 2003



"Of course not, Officer Moon. Memory engram insertion takes only a few seconds of objective clock-time. And even I can occupy myself for that long. Stand by. Link priority set. Officers Capek and von Brandt have the ball," Red replies smoothly, "Proceeding with navigational computer configuration. Officer von Brandt, I understand your concerns about the lack of detail concerning Remonde Prime's orbital and surface defenses. I will prioritize ship safety over providing a stable gunnery platform. With my apologies to Officer Capek."

"Okeanos is approaching junction criticality. Stand by for displacement. Counter-shock generators at maximum output."

"Three. Two. One. Displacement successful."

The carrier is gone. A massive, caramel-colored gas giant hangs at the ship's nose. In front of that, the smaller, muddy-brown disc of Remonde Prime itself. It's coming up fast enough to be perceptible even to human senses.

"Course is green. Rate of closure is fifteen miles per second. Closest approach at four miles above the datum."

Suddenly, the neural link goes orange. Radar warning alarm. Something is engaging. Perhaps, if one is anticipating it, there is the slightest of tremors within the shock pod liquid.

"New contact: orbital battle cluster at zero one five, one three seven, relative, distance three zero zero nine kilometers, rate of closure one six point zero. Rapid high energy responses on the bogey. Three centimeter penetration on main glacis. Initiating right combat roll."

The star field, and hanging gas giant, suddenly begin to whip around as the ship rolls. Lasers. Not petawatt-class shipkillers, but dangerous. At this range, they can blind optics, destroy embedded electronic warfare antennae, or punch silver-dollar sized divots out of the laminate plates that protect the nose.

"Secondary contacts. Incoming hypervelocity projectiles, rate of closure two one point zero. Time to impact, twenty seconds. Officer von Brandt, I need to focus on point defense. You have the controls."

You're under attack! I'm using GURPS Spaceship rules, but just post what you're doing and I'll translate. Keep in mind that these combat turns are 1 minute long when deciding your actions. That's also plenty of time for (terse) conversation if you want to talk before/after/during acting.

The Oldest Man fucked around with this message at Jan 13, 2015 around 05:54

Ambivalent
Oct 14, 2006



Officer Moon

No matter how thick the armor… This is space, and every time the vessel takes a hit, there’s always that notion in the back of your head that something could go critically wrong in just the right way to end everything. It doesn’t. “Lucky us.”

In the emerging flurry, she pulls up sensor suites, closing her eyes for a moment before immersing herself in an all-directions annotated imaging system, helping guide directed sensors and parse the results. Profile on contacts. Let’s see exactly what we’re dealing with. Zero one five, display. One three seven, display. Her eyes flit rapidly about the inside her lids, brain digesting the flood of data as she lends her neural link to Red’s processing power.

Working with the AI, directing its focus, Su passes along processed results from Red to the rest of the crew. Her ‘voice’ cuts in through the noise on their neural links, placidly calm with just a hint of gentle urging, “Alarus, OD drones communicating our vector via dynamically encoded burst packets but may have an open channel. Marek, flagging weapons platforms in. Zero. One Five. In. One. Three. Seven.” Her processed data fills their feeds with options and suggestions, some of them gradually melting away and disappearing as further data rules them out or a timing window elapses, others forming as they become available.

Basically, hoping to coordinate operations by working with sensors and our neural link. I suppose I have Electronics Operation (Sensors) 12, but I could also attempt a Leadership 13 roll to give the others a +1 on their actions. Not sure if it is even possible for a human to assist on Point Defense, but that’s an option too.

aldantefax
Oct 10, 2007

ALWAYS BE MECHFISHIN'

Carl

"Assuming helm and entering tactical navigation," he announces, starting a clock for the planned return via ripcord. Current change in parameters weren't sufficient to abort the sortie, but it did put a delay on the schedule.

It also meant that someone made a tactical error prior to the mission.

Being in a shock pod with a neural link to the ship means that the hands and feet are free to do whatever they see fit - there are no physical controls, after all, in one of these pods. He raises both hands, like a conductor about to begin a symphony. "Marek, situation on armaments? We should conserve ammo for the actual mission. If we can take care of this quickly in a dogfight, say so now; otherwise, all hands prepare for active evasive maneuvers on my mark."

I'm going to first try out Tactical Navigation roll - both Navigation and Sensors are at 12. Based on Marek's reply I will either attempt a Closing maneuver to get advantage, or Evasive Action if there's no objections so that we can break away from these clowns. In both cases, Piloting 15 as a base for the maneuvers.

Spaceship Dodge, if needed: 8 + modifiers (likely Tac Nav and Evasive Action) + handling.

Jenkem Delivery
Feb 8, 2005

Death created time to grow the things that it would kill

Alarus Za'al

Alarus jolts a bit as the warning comes on. "Son of a bitch" he mutters to himself, although it's not terribly audible through the shock pod goo. He groans when the orbital defense unit comes up on the display. Would have been nice if someone did some actual intel work and had warned them about it. Alarus made a mental note to find out who was responsible for analyzing the data and chew them a new rear end in a top hat. Who knows, maybe it was Decius. That piece of poo poo would stoop to something this low to jeopardize the mission and make him look bad. His thoughts snapped back to the present as the AI indicated incoming projectiles and Moon gave her report.

"Copy that Moon, going to start an intrustion to see if I can get into the drone array or jam them." Alarus quickly works through the neural link, bringing up multiple windows of data and code. Working quickly he assembles a penetrating attack to break into the OD Drone Array hoping to gaina access to their communciation suite and maybe transmit some false coordinates to throw off the Planetary Defenses. If things went really well he may get a pipeline to drop some corrupt data as well and maybe scramble some systems. He mouthed an array of unmentionable words and sexual acts involving various mothers while he worked. Some people enjoyed music when they worked, some enjoyed muscle stimulation chairs. Alarus just liked to swear like a drunken sailor.

Computer Hacking 15, Computer Programming 15 (both AI and regular), Encryption 13. Going to try and get into the drones and transmit false locations of our ship.

Jenkem Delivery fucked around with this message at Jan 13, 2015 around 18:15

DocBubonic
Mar 11, 2003

Tempora mutantur, et nos mutamur in illis

Officer Marek Capek

Nasty stuff, war and the goo. He could put up with it. Living in a mining colony meant you lived in crude conditions and endured hardships. War brought new hardships, but still they weren't surmountable. Adjusting to the shock pod took him longer then he expected, but he managed to being analyzing the situation. Za'al would probably want to get first dibs at the information coming in to figure out what we have as targets. Capek knew he could always go with his gut on determining targets. The brass wanted damage done to put a hurt on these people and that's what he'd deliver. Maybe the sensors will pick up on a building with volatile chemical storage. If not that then it might be best to go after the first viable targets that pop up.

Capek's ruminations then stop as he hears Carl.

"Evade them if you can. We don't have time to engage them."

He then checks on the weapons to make sure everything is online and ready to fire.

Making sure weapons are ready to go.

The Oldest Man
Jul 28, 2003



Moon zeroes in on the source of the incoming projectiles. There are a swarm of about ten of them, unpowered, but lit up like candles on infrared. Their speed suggests what their trajectory confirms: they're coming from the surface of Remonde Prime. That makes it impossible to get a clean lock on the source, because the thick atmosphere prevents the sensors from picking out whatever mass driver is launching them. Fortunately, surface weapons are beholden to their static position. Once Hunter 425 gets closer and picks up surface transversal rate, it'll be impossible for fixed emplacements to track them. The one that fired is almost over the horizon, and was probably just on the edge of its engagement envelope when they displaced in.

Meanwhile, Alarus uses the attack lidar of the defense platform as an intrusion point for the cyberwarfare suite. Almost every type of sensor is subject to data corruption introduced into the sensor return itself, and he obliges by pulsing a laser comm back into the emitter with enough junk data to cause a system reset. It's not much of an intrusion, but enough. The defense platform's attack temporarily halts as their computers simultaneously indicate that Hunter 425 is three thousand kilometers away, ten meters away, and that the targeting software has switched to exercise mode.

The ship has a clear path in, but for one thing; a scatter swarm of six inch long hyper-dense darts, with enough closing velocity to pose a potential kill risk. Carl considers an evasion burn and decides against it. The attack pattern is designed to cover a very large area, almost a square kilometer. For a clean miss, they'd need to turn the ship perpendicular to the attack, and there's not enough time to clear the danger area. Instead, he calculates the intercept time and angle and begins a carefully controlled combination of lateral and medial roll so that the ship's advancing aspect is presented just so...

SKANG

There's a hard jolt this time, no mistaking it. Sensors briefly flicker offline and are clouded with static as one of the projectiles hits, and glances off.

When the forward cameras come back, the orbital defense platform has erupted into an expanding blossom of debris. Probably because of a few hundred holes that have been punched in it by the ship's rapid fire graser battery. Red's idea of point defense.

"I believe we're clear of immediate opposition. Ninety seconds to atmospheric interface. Shall we begin scanning for targets?"

The Oldest Man fucked around with this message at Jan 14, 2015 around 03:33

Ambivalent
Oct 14, 2006



Officer Moon

Her heart hits about four half-beats when the hull takes the impact. Could’ve gone better. Could’ve gone far worse. Breathing outward into the gel, she sifts through the impact summary – more in depth probing could wait so long as systems remained functional. “Likely we’ve cleared effective range of surface-based weapons.” Then a more succinct and relieved version of the same, “We’re through.”

With any good fortune, they’d be out and through before Remonde Prime could muster a response, especially with Alarus’ handiwork. “By all means, Red.” Mission parameters, outlines of instructions from command all roll through her link and through Red’s system. Making it sound like the most routine thing in the world, “Let’s flag our targets, unload munitions and go home.” Profiles and schematics of the kinds of prefab facilities and assembled structures Okeanos expects Remonde has employed. Maximum disruption of all capabilities. Communication, transit, manufacturing, sustainment. Tucked into the back of the update packet, the ethics assessment. Maybe Moon had put that there on purpose, or it was naturally lumped in with the rest of the assessment. Maybe it leaked out into the neural link subconsciously. She pauses, then reasserts herself, “Red, keep us apprised of any particularly hardened facilities, those could be made priorities.”

DocBubonic
Mar 11, 2003

Tempora mutantur, et nos mutamur in illis

Officer Capek

"gently caress," He could feel the hit. It was hard for him to figure out how hard they were hit, but they were still flying so he didn't worry about it.

"Red, give officer Za'al and I a listing of possible targets. I want to make sure we make the best of the situation and hit them as hard as we can before we take off again."

He figured it was best to keep the targeting between himself and Za'al. Za'al wouldn't second guess targets. He'd go for high priority targets no matter what they were.

Electronics Operation/TL12 (Sensors) IQ/A - IQ-1 11

aldantefax
Oct 10, 2007

ALWAYS BE MECHFISHIN'

Carl

He moves his hands in graceful swirls and raises them high and low, in time with the correct judgment of evasion. Good. He balls his hands into fists, and relaxes them, one finger at a time. At Red's prompt, he is quick to add to the discussion some informational bits: "Preparing to switch to atmospheric mode - prepare to change to series 2 in maneuver schedule," Carl says. The contrary to series 3, this would give the gun platform the best angles they need to do their job. "Marek, keep an eye on the clock. We are still on track with the original schedule." Things were well enough that if that was the bumpy part, he could even afford a blink or two. At a graceful lift palms-up, the sensor virtual array blooms to life with Remonde Prime below, ready for atmospheric entry. "Red, damage report?"

I hit post and 3 new posts showed up, whoops, re-edited the whole thing to make more sense

aldantefax fucked around with this message at Jan 14, 2015 around 07:15

Jenkem Delivery
Feb 8, 2005

Death created time to grow the things that it would kill

Alarus Za'al

Alarus blinks as the data steream comes in through his neural interface. Success on the hack, he scrambled the defense array just enough to give them a slight window to get through. He took a deep breath in the shock pod goo and mumbled a few threats and curses towards whoever ran the intel for this mission. Alarus then brought up the sensor feed and layered the analysis systems over it.

"Red, plug me into the sensor feed and get ready to crunch the data as it comes through. Priority is industrial sites but if we've got anything of value we're gonna hit it and hit it hard. Once I identify the targets I'll feed 'em right to you, Red. Toast these motherfuckers."

Electronic Operations: Sensors- 12, Intelligence Analysis - 13

The Oldest Man
Jul 28, 2003



Alarus and Marek start poring through the mass of sensor data that floods in. The Remondiers aren't having any of it, with the entire spectrum lit up with their ECM efforts, but it's ultimately in vain. They haven't had time to lock down their cities and industry to hide the big stuff from detection, and the Hunter's active sensors are extraordinarily difficult to deceive when it comes to area targets. The main obstacle is two-fold: time, because the strike window is a little over two minutes long. And speed, because the ship can only effectively engage targets well before it passes over them. When those targets are on a Titanian moon, the horizon comes up a lot faster than it would on a garden planet.

Fortunately, this is exactly the kind of mission Alarus trained for. He can tell immediately that the population estimate from the briefing might have been a gross under-estimate. There are a large fields of sunken, cryogenically frozen hydrates, meaningless to most, that indicate subterranean building complexes far larger than what the active radar and infrared are picking up through the methane haze. There could be twice as many people down there as they thought. The good news is that industry is far harder to conceal the habitation. Macrofacs produce huge quantities of tell-tale exhaust heat and volatile gasses, and in a cryogenic environment that might as well be neon signs. It's impossible to tell what they're building- but whatever it is, they're certainly doing it in quantity. He queues a dozen massive complexes that span more than ten square miles each for Marek, who begins computing the firing solutions necessary to destroy them.

"We're entering the upper atmosphere. Stand by for turbulence."

The sound is immediate. A howling, rushing wind of fire that picks up on all of the Hunter's leading edges and extends further and further behind as it plows further into the lower atmosphere. Carl flips the ship up onto its vertical axis so that it is streaking through the thick nitrogen and methane nose straight down, broadside into the wind. The outer laminate armor begins to glow cherry-hot.

"Main battery switched to automatic fire. Loading burst rounds, set for one kilometer altitude airburst detonation. Officer Capek, you have the gun."

The first complex enters firing range.

Ambivalent
Oct 14, 2006



Moon

Her link gets a little quieter as she eases back to allow Marek and Alarus the space they need to work. When they break through the atmosphere, she pulls in a flood of imaging from every direction possible, wanting to digest a view of the planet – not for the data they’re mining but… Well, it is a new world she’s never seen before, and that always warrants a good long look. Even the rocky, chilled landscape can be beautiful in a way – they are different, and raw and, truthfully, no different than many similar moons, but in this moment, it is new and special and she won’t likely see it again. Quietly, she saves the view of Remonde Prime to her personal drive. The nagging notification reminds her that it is, after all, ultimately a new world she’s going to only visit for a handful of seconds, and then only to rain fire upon it. Life is strange that way.

She snaps back to readiness and begins pruning sensor data and breaking down readouts, tossing over everything she flags to the rest of the crew as it becomes available, “I’ll paint the horizon and keep a heads up.” She overlays the ladar map with heat maps and begins painting things in a cyan hue once they’ve registered as solid targets, as soon as they emerge over the horizon. Potential threats, obstacles for Carl to be wary of are washed in a pulsing orange color. Any misgivings about the targeting and the mission have bled out of her brain, shoved out by adrenaline. It simply isn’t something any part of her brain has the luxury of devoting effort towards. Not at the moment, anyway.

Moon’ll Sensors – 13 to keep hunting for high value targets, and be on standby to help Red sort through any countermeasures, I think.

Ambivalent fucked around with this message at Jan 15, 2015 around 07:30

aldantefax
Oct 10, 2007

ALWAYS BE MECHFISHIN'

Carl

Before, in simulations, he would filter the sound of rushing air so that it was nothing more than a whisper of white noise while he practiced maneuvers like this type of high velocity atmospheric entry. However, over the course of time he became accustomed to the rush of wind, the overpowering sound and sensation of dropping through an atmosphere. The rumbling of an entire planet, fighting back to keep this impossible piece of science aloft.

He blinked. He was getting poetic. He adjusted his orientation in the shock pod along with the ship, moving to and fro and making minute adjustments wordlessly as the world below bloomed to life from Moon's analysis.

Since we're in atmosphere now I'll be using the other Piloting skill I have, which happens to be conveniently at 15.

DocBubonic
Mar 11, 2003

Tempora mutantur, et nos mutamur in illis

Marek

"Targets acquired. I'm going for the macrofacs." He thought about going after the subterranean building complexes, but he reasoned that the weapons would do more damage to facilities on the surface then buildings underground. No matter his feelings on the matter, the macrofacs were a higher priority target.

He scans the visuals that were getting fed to him. The buildings that were identified as macrofacs came into view. Calming himself down, he started to breathe slower. He pulled the trigger and began to fire. He started at the closest facility and kept firing without confirming each shot.

Artillery/TL12 (Beams)-14, Artillery/TL12 (Cannon)-14, Gunner/TL12 (Beams)-15, Gunner/TL12 (Cannon)-15

DocBubonic fucked around with this message at Jan 16, 2015 around 00:55

Jenkem Delivery
Feb 8, 2005

Death created time to grow the things that it would kill

Alarus Za'al

Alarus flags the macrofacs for Marek, they might as well just have put up huge signs that said "PLEASE TARGET ME". "Setting up the target board for you Marek, light these motherfuckers up." He says with a snarl. There is something creeping in the back of his mind, some sort of thought that this operation was far bigger than was originally thought. They were setting up to make....something big. More planet burners?

The data he had already pulled from the scanners would be useful for the Commander to pass along. He continued hitting the scanners, trying to find anything else that they could hit on their attack run or any data that may be of value. If there's no time to hit any of these targets though, he's going to try and hack some of the macrofac networks to find out what the hell they were producing.

Not sure what to do here and I didn't want to waste time waiting for a response so I figured I'd make a conditional action. Is there any use in Alarus scanning for more targets or does Marek have a full slate for the attack run as it is? If there's no use in scanning for additional targets to flag for Marek, Alarus is going to try and hack the Macrofac network to find any data on what was being produced here. Electronic Operations: Sensors- 12, Intelligence Analysis - 13 for action 1, Computer HackingComputer Hacking 15, Computer Programming 15 (both AI and regular), Encryption 13. 15, Computer Programming 15 (both AI and regular), Encryption 13 for action 2.

The Oldest Man
Jul 28, 2003



Strike on Remonde Prime

"Entering the troposphere," Red intones as the atmosphere thickens and the plasma sheath around the Hunter grows to a mile-long banner, visible to anyone on the ground for a thousand miles in any direction, "Commence attack."

The ship's main battery is a pressor cannon, a type of anti-gravity railgun that first reduces the mass of a slug with a contragravity field and then accelerates it to a significant fraction of light speed with magnetic coils. It was designed to punch a hole through the meters-thick armor of an ouster dreadnought. In the ground attack role, it fires a shell containing a speck of antimatter in a magnetic bottle. The result is a pocket nuclear weapon that can be produced at massive scale, limited only by the energy available to produce antimatter. The garden worlds have dedicated solar arrays that dim entire stars to producing such weapons. Enough, they say, for this.

With Carl pitching and yawing the ship with tiny, precise inputs on the attitude thrusters to counter the burning air that rushes all around them, the Hunter is stable enough to rapid-fire and moving too fast for ground-based defenses to respond.

Marek turns the gun against the unprotected cities of Remonde Prime.

With one burst, a macrofac two miles long vanishes in a sea of flashes. The Hunter carries thousands of rounds of ammunition, and Marek has no compunction about collateral damage. If such a thing even exists in this situation. He walks fire across the metropole to the next macrofac, and then the next, and the next. A pyramid arcology some five hundred stories tall, the crown jewel of some un-named place, shudders as a salvo of shells bursts around it. Paint flashes and is gone, metal boils, and then the structure is engulfed.

Buildings and factories and whole cities rush up from the horizon and are leveled, swept aside as insects before the winds of a hurricane.

Even the landscape begins to disintegrate under the onslaught. The stone-hard water ice that forms the bedrock of this tiny world instantly flashes to steam in the nuclear fire, boiling dozens of square miles around each blast and drowning hundreds more as the steam instantly condenses in the freezing air. From each impact, a pyroclastic flow of steam hotter than molten rock, boiling water, and debris washes out to consume the subterranean habitats that sprawl away from the center of the cities.

As the ship passes its closest approach, the fine-control aiming with the help of the pilot is no longer possible, and Marek settles for driving a line of unbroken fire across the surface. Individual detonations become impossible to distinguish as each shell plows into the expanding shockwave of the one before, carving a new valley into the surface of the moon as the ship arcs past overhead.

The destruction is absolute.

Alarus doesn't have time to even probe the defenses of each macrofac before it is wiped off the face of the moon, so he can only content himself with looking ahead for new targets. He and Moon dutifully scan each, prioritize, and feed them back to the gunnery officer for annihilation. A warning goes off in the depths of the information warfare suite. From somewhere ahead, a tight-beam comm pushes a signal into one of the Hunter's lidar receivers: a message, just long enough to contain some text and perhaps a few images. It bears the encryption coding of the UG intelligence directive, highest compartmentalization.

And then the source of the beam, somewhere down there in the cities of the enemy, vanishes beneath another flash of x-rays and infrared, and is gone over the horizon.

Hunter 425 begins to rise back out of the atmosphere on its own inertia, steadily gaining altitude even as the attack continues.

Ambivalent
Oct 14, 2006



Moon

Sensor data reaches her feed and sticks, another report, another scan, accumulating in her queue. Nothing outgoing emerges from her neural link for a good ten seconds, which might as well be an eternity here. Then, slowly, her work resumes though never quite reaching the previous flurry. A quiet, smooth voice, “Receiving communiqué, authorized UG encryption.” Quieter, “Suggesting quarantine for the moment.” If it is valuable, it is likely the duty of someone else to see to it. If it is a trick of some sort, no way she wants anything like that anywhere near Red. That’s how she reasons it.

An internal sensor from her shock pod advises administering a fast-acting antiemetic. She dismisses it almost as quickly as it appears. She plunges her focus back into the sensor data.

Jenkem Delivery
Feb 8, 2005

Death created time to grow the things that it would kill

Alarus Za'al

Alarus lets out a whoop, the vibration of his cheer moving in waves through the goo of the shock pod. The gel puts a damper on any celebratory actions, literally and figuratively. "Good shooting Marek." he transmits as Hunter 425 Red begins its climb out of the atmosphere. His eyes go wide when the transmission comes into the EW suite. He begins assessing the encryption protocol as Moon expresses her trepidation, pausing for a moment as he addresses the rest of the crew.

"Look, this is big time. Too big to let the UG Military bureaucrats banter about how many meetings and authorizations need to be completed before this can be opened or transmitted to Intelligence. Look how badly they did on the recon for this mission alone! We can't just let them sit on this and gently caress us and the war effort. This may be the data about the weapon that destroyed Earth! I can crack this and we can show it to the Commander. Red, can you isolate the EW suite to keep any corrupt data from leaking if this is indeed a Trojan?"

Not cracking it yet, but making a counterpoint to Moon and verifying I can keep it from affecting Red if it is indeed some sort of Ouster trick

DocBubonic
Mar 11, 2003

Tempora mutantur, et nos mutamur in illis

Marek

"Sure lit those bastards up. I'd say mission accomplished." He checked the sensors to see if he can get any indication of how much damage he managed to inflict. The visuals seemed to make it clear, Remonde Prime got destroyed. Marek wanted to get some data to figure out just how bad the place got damaged.

Electronics Operation/TL12 (Sensors)-11, Expert Skill (Military Science) - 10 to sort out damage reports

Ambivalent
Oct 14, 2006



Moon

“Those ‘bureaucrats’ are occasionally known as superior officers,” she helpfully chimes in. This isn’t the time, and there’s no good reason to mess with the data right now. Not while still on the tail end of their attack run and they’d be back at the carrier in mere moments. On another day, at another time, Su would put the argument to Alarus more cheerfully and probably insist that they leave it be. As it stands, with Remonde Prime still in the process of obliteration beneath her, and her crew’s celebration beside her, she’s feeling a little disoriented. So in spite of herself, she just leaves it be. She doesn’t outrank Officer Za’al. She objected. Objection was noted.

aldantefax
Oct 10, 2007

ALWAYS BE MECHFISHIN'

Carl

Somewhere in the back of his mind the curiosity of the message is meticulously categorized and filed away, but while the rest of the crew was in a semi-jubilant state already, he was only getting started. Getting into the atmosphere and providing a stable platform is one thing - getting out of it and preparing for ripcord is another thing entirely. His focus sharpened further as calculations came and went through his mind on the flight dynamics.

"Prepare for atmospheric egress and ripcord procedures. Keep an eye on the clock," cut in the astroagtor. "Anything you need to get done, your time's about up." He blinked through the shock fluid. That probably had a bit more finality than he was expecting, but nonetheless, the mission was a success, and some potentially valuable data was retrieved, but he wouldn't let his guard down until after the debriefing.

The Oldest Man
Jul 28, 2003



Hunter 415 climbs out of the atmosphere. Marek safes the gun and takes a look through the sensors to try to make out the damage, but it's too late. The nuclear shockwaves and radiation have completely obscured the surface, even to imaging lidar. There's simply too much interference to get an accurate idea of the damage they've inflicted.

Meanwhile, Red takes a look at the trojan file and replies to Alarus, "This encryption flag appears to be genuine. Even if this isn't a concealed cyberwarfare program, UG intelligence regularly equips its communiques with semi-sentient anti-temper mechanisms. Also, it would be wrong to tamper with secret information, Officer Za'al." The last bit sounds a bit reproachful.

"I agree with Officer Moon and suggest we pass this file along to the relevant UG authorities at the next available opportunity. There may be an intelligence directorate officer at Trieste to whom we can surrender it," Red goes on cheerfully, using the ship's close-in antiparticle beam to fry a few comm satellites on the way back into space, "Officer van Brandt, we will reach safe ripcord altitude in twenty seconds. Shall I initiate the displacement procedure?"

The Oldest Man fucked around with this message at Jan 18, 2015 around 01:57

aldantefax
Oct 10, 2007

ALWAYS BE MECHFISHIN'

Carl

"Affirmative, Red, please proceed as soon as possible. All hands prepare for warp displacement." The timer resets at his bidding, synchronized to the projected time. "Time to go home," he says - whether or not that was a joke given that they were directly responsible for the destruction of an uncountable number of homes, and he the victim of a similar collapse.

Ambivalent
Oct 14, 2006



Moon

Her blood starts to cool, or the adrenaline starts to slow, and time starts to proceed at a pace she can now recognize as closer to ‘normal.’ As Red rebuffs Alarus, she can’t help but feel a bit of parental pride – maybe an egotistical notion, but she wonders if she’d heard a little of her own influence there. Relaxing her focus, confident in Carl and Red’s ability to bring the ship around, she settles in to working with the AI to compile data into reportable forms for mission summary, taking stock of the run. “Oh, hey, Red, can we get a closer look at that hit we took on the nose? Seemed shallow enough.” Diagnostics, records, sensory data. Damage assessment. So on. Data, data, data. Puts distance between her and Remonde Prime faster than anything the astrogator can do.

In the meanwhile, she chats away with Red, taking an informal assessment with the AI, (‘How do you think you did?’ ‘What was most challenging about this mission?’), though she keeps it out of the feed of the rest of the crew.

The Oldest Man
Jul 28, 2003



"Displacement successful," Red reports.

The stars are gone again, replaced with the white and grey of the attack carrier's launch cradle. To the rear, the jump drive is already spinning up to the blinding speed needed for an interstellar jump. Trieste is around eighty light-years away. It will take just over a day to reach it, displacing fraction of a light year with each jump and then repeating the process again and again, hundreds of times per hour.

The shock pod bay in the center of the ship cracks open as the extraction arm reaches in to retrieve the crew. Red happily banters away with Moon as the pods are unloaded, patching in some feeds from the cradle gantry to show the damage on the glacis plate to the others. The laser platform vaporized a number of small divots out of the plate, but the real damage is where the mass driver round glanced off. The low-observable coating has been stripped in a slash nearly fifteen feet long, and the plate underneath has buckled. It was a very near thing. Had the angle been slightly less favorable, the hyper-dense dart would have cored the ship from nose to tail. As it is, the entire glacis will most likely have to be replaced.

On the gantry, the shock pods split open and begin evacuating the cocooning gel. Although it has the feel of a bulk substance, the gel is actually a highly advanced composite of micro-technologically separated shock absorbers, oxygen-delivery liquid, first-aid robots, and vacuoles, much like a macroscopic version of intracellular cytoplasm. The biggest benefit as far as attack ship pilots are concerned is that the stuff hoovers up in a single mass without leaving much of a residue. It even comes out of the lungs and mouth in a single movement that feels like a combination of vomiting and coughing up water. Assignee Taylor, the cradle coordinator, offers each of them the traditional post-flight mint. The shock gel may not leave much of a residue, but hacking up a lung still leaves you with a bad taste in your mouth.

Commander Ilyusha is already checking in on the radio, "Red's already relayed the mission data and we've jumped clear of the outer Remonde system en route for Trieste. The other carriers displaced as soon as their respective missions are complete, so we'll rendezvous with them at the destination. Debrief is in one hour."

"Oh, and good work."

"I'll handle the post-flight checks," Red says helpfully, "You four should get something to eat and some rest."

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aldantefax
Oct 10, 2007

ALWAYS BE MECHFISHIN'

Carl

He reviews the handiwork of the opposition on the same patch feeds from the external maintenance cameras. "You'll handle your post-flight checks, Red, and I'll go through my list as well." Leave it to someone with as severe a training as Carl to second guess an AI on matters of ship qualifications. Not too happy about getting hit at all, but it was an emergency, and things would definitely be very different if he hadn't made that adjustment. Comes with the territory, though - he brought he assets from the Hunter 425 back in one piece, and once the debrief's over and done with, he can actually properly relax. Opting out of any solid rations, he opts for a fruit-flavored drink mixture that, so the story goes, was useful for preventing any lasting effects from ejecting the shock gel from his system. Since he has an hour to kill before debriefing, the drink serves as his primary fuel. He remains in open communication with Red, going over by rote the checklist that he had developed as part of his original introduction to the AI. How do you do, tell me if systems eight through seventeen are operational and returning nominal values, thank you.

Drink in one hand and his checklist in the other, he aimlessly wandered about, setting a reminder to head to the debriefing room after changing.

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