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The brilliant white battleship shuddered as round after round pierced her already destroyed hull. Escape pods jettisoned like a cloud of gnats as the hull of the Ri'Aldech began to come apart at its seams. A few of the turbolasers began to chug away in staccato fire as their crews tried to clear the magazines, but the destruction of the mighty battledragon was too advanced already. The fire could be seen billowing from the holes along the ships stern, then the ship cracked apart at the seams, followed by the destruction of its hyperdrive core. Few if any escape pods made it through the mass of alpha radiation. 

 

Captain Esterhazy shook her head.

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Rebel Alliance Fleet Status: End of Round Four (Shields/Hull)

 

Royal Hapan Naval Precision Strike Carrier Group |Coldstream| Destroyed

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp) 

O/C-Battle dragon class Cruiser: Ri'Aldech |0/0|

 

Royal Hapan Naval Assault Lance [Kinetic Ram] |Kitchener|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

O/C-Battle dragon class Cruiser: Transvaal |21/25|

 

Royal Hapan Naval Heavy Brawler Escort |Zeeland|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

O/C-Battle dragon class Cruiser: Victoria |21/35|

 

Rebel Alliance Destroyer Group [Missiles] |One| 

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp)

KDY-Victory II-class Cruiser L'Ouverture |0/0|

KDY-Victory II-class Cruiser Gerrera |6/9|

  

Rebel Alliance Heavy Brawler Escort |Fidelity| 

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp)

MCS-MC90-class Star Cruiser Fidelity |5/35|

  

Rebel Alliance Precision Strike Carrier Group |Taffy-14| 

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp)

KDY-Nebula-class Star Destroyer Benediction |15/20|

 

Mandalorian Neo-Crusader Destroyer Group [Railguns] |Akalenedat|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

  • IPM Neo-Kandosii-class Battleship: Xaakzaamheid |25/25|

 

Mandalorian Neo-Crusader Destroyer Group [Missiles] |Bes'bev|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

  • IPM Neo-Kandosii-class Battleship: Nat’ah |25/25|

 

Mandalorian Neo-Crusader Light Defensive Escort: Suppressing Fire |Cabur| Withdrawn

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Vlissingen |3/3|
  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Leeuwarden |0/3|
  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Nassau |0/0|
  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Vrijheid |0/0|
  • IPM Jehavey'ir-class Assault Corvette Stavoren |2/1|
  • IPM Jehavey'ir-class Assault Corvette Oosterwijk |0/0|
  • IPM Jehavey'ir-class Assault Corvette Jaarsveld |0/0|

 

________

 

Admiral Slaughter tuned out the warnings that Herlov had come within range of the Hapan carrier and was being converged upon by a swarm of Sith fighters. The crew of that ship knew as well that their vessel could not be saved and all that could be done was to jettison munitions from its flight deck in an attempt to cause their ship to be merely crippled, rather blown into space dust. His attention instead was on the encroaching Sith vessel. With its shields down and armor battered, now was finally an opportunity to finish off that damned Kyber-class Star Destroyer.

 

He spoke quickly into the comms, coordinating a massive time-on-target barrage by the Mandalorian. An frightful array of missiles and physical projectiles ensued from the prows of the hulking battleships, plunging through the cloud of flitting starfighters, snuffing the life out of two of the smaller vessels in chance collisions. For a moment, it appeared almost as though the convergence of fire would strike the Star Destroyer in one of the buckled belts of armor, potentially crippling the steel beast…

 

But that was not to happen. In a shocking display of attention to duty, one of the smaller cruisers maneuvered into position to occlude the breach with its comparatively more fragile bulk. There was no point in guessing the results of intercepting such a barrage.

 

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SITH EMPIRE

ROUND FOUR.

 

 

Fleet Command (Flagship)

High Command: Exodus, Inquisitor Barca

Augmentation: Axial Weapon (MK-I), Ultra-Heavy Flak Cannons (MK-I)

Xhendora-Class Dreadnought, Goliath |7/25|

 

Battle Line Escort: Tradition of Excellence

Commander: Exodus, Inquisitor Barca

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Gladiator-Class Star Destroyer, Minotaur |35/25|

 

Sith Empire Destroyer Group [Turbolasers]: Focus Fire

Assigned PC: NPC (Qaela)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Assigned Callsign: Herløv

Kyber-Class Star Destroyer, Herløv |0/20|

 

_________________________________________________________________________

 

Assault Lance [Kinetic Ram]: Juggernaught

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP

MC80a Star Cruiser The Prodigious |6/21|

 

 

Combat Air Patrol Carrier: No Fly Zone |Sergeti|

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP

Lucrehulk Control Core (LH-1740) Eye of Opulence |0/6|

MC30c frigate Tidewalker |3/3|

MC30c frigate  Blue Horizon |3/3|

Thranta-class corvette Dawn Sentry |2/1|

Thranta-class corvette Winning Hand |2/1|

 

 

Covert Strike Force: Silent Hunters

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 3XP

Nova-class Battle Cruiser Our Velvet Ire |9/9|

_________________________________________________________________________

 

 

Advanced Warfighter Cadre: Catastrophic Oracle

Commander: Nyrys

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Promised Razor: |3/9|
Lamia: |3/3|
Cassandra: |2/1|
Sibyl: |2/1|
Egeria: |2/1|
Pythia: |2/1|
RETREATED 


Tactical Support Escort: Wayward Serpent DESTROYED

Commander: Nyrys

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Temple of Vipers: |1/9|

Coiled Hatred: |3/3|
Nidhoggr: |1/1|
Moin: |2/1|
Goin: |2/1|
Svafnir: |2/1|

 

Green Precision Strike Carrier: Unforgiving Rebuke

Commander: Nyrys

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Myrmidon: |25/25|

 

_________________________________________________________________________

 

 

"What we do selfishly, dies with us. What we do for our Empire remains forever."

 

 

Unflinching composure settled deeply into the crew of The Goliath, watching closely as their allies chose death. The zealotry of the smaller tactical escort supports swarmed protectively across the bulk of the Herløv before imminent danger fell, angling their trajectory to intercept a most impressive barrage triggered by the opposing forces. Their defensive maneuvering spoke volumes to the efficiency required to pilot and crew any vessel within the Sith Empire, abandoning all thought regarding uncertainty in order to obstruct the ruination of their fellow comrades. The magnitude of impact from their broadside slant, incinerated their warships within a near blink-of-the-eye. The colliding differences of firepower lurched into the warships as if sinking abstractedly into the metal chassis of each vessel, illuminating with a terrific posture of brilliant light, before bursting completely at the seams. The thermic spray of super-heated metal erupted all at once, completely obliterating all life aboard each and every unit that composed the supports. 

 

Zloth'cal'duorii did not bother to swap expressions, the hard dip of his brows furrowed curiously at the sight of the larger enemy carrier instead, watching it disintegrate from the inside-out. How did it feel? Many lives were spent in exchange for the price of hoarded munitions. He could hear the screams of burning men and women, or of hopeless and frantic wailings of prayer before the swallow of space sucked their lungs dry. He could hear it all inside of his mind, imagining them more than really ever hearing anything inside the morbid command of the Flagship. What were they thinking, as their masters chauffeured them off to their cold and empty graves. Onderon, Corellia, Kuat, Fonder. He would never understand, this simple post removed him from the raw experience of pain, panic and loss. Zloth'cal'duorii reached for the high-collar uniformly braided around his neck, and loosened the material before it chaffed further at his blue skin. He was sweating more than he had realized, as his eyes darted across the holo-display, registering the hull integrities of the gathered armada. He was actually enjoying himself, but he could not admit that he felt this way; a tickle of excitement churning just beneath the assortment of imperial medals that scaled his white tunic.

 

Edited by Exodus

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  • 2 weeks later...

Rebel Alliance

Offensive Actions

|Kitchener| Attacks |Juggernaut
|One| Attacks |Juggernaut
|Akalenedat| Attacks |Herlov|
|Bes'bev| Attacks |Herlov|
|Taffy-14| Attacks |Juggernaut 2 x Bombers Inbound
|Fleet Commander Starfighter Action| Bombers Inbound on |Juggernaut|

|Fleet Commander Starfighter Action| Bombers Inbound on |Goliath|

 

Defensive Actions

|Fidelity| detaches from |One| 

|Zeeland| attaches to |Taffy-14|

|Fleet Commander Starfighter Action| Interception (Focused Deployment on |Taffy-14|)

 

Total Damage Received:

4 damage to |One| straight to cruiser from bombers

11 damage to |Taffy-14|

8 damage to |Zeeland|

 

Sith Empire

Offensive Actions

Fleet Command (Flagship) attacks |Taffy-14|
Assault Lance [Kinetic Ram]: Juggernaught attacks |Taffy-14|

BI on |Taffy-14|
BI on |Taffy-14|
BI on |Taffy-14|

BI on |One|

BI on |One|

 

Defensive Actions

Battle Line Escort: Tradition of Excellence escorts Flagship
Inter (focused deployment) on Herlov

Inter (focused deployment) on Herlov

Herlov escapes

 

 

Total Damage Received:

3 damage to shields from bombers to |Goliath| 

10 damage to |Herlov| (10 from Aklenedat and Besbev)

17 damage to |Juggernaught| (8 from Kitchener and One, 6 straight to hull from bombers)

 

Stealth scans reveal nothing.

Edited by Mavanger

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SITH EMPIRE

ROUND FIVE.

 

 

Fleet Command (Flagship)

High Command: Exodus, Inquisitor Barca

Augmentation: Axial Weapon (MK-I), Ultra-Heavy Flak Cannons (MK-I)

Xhendora-Class Dreadnought, Goliath |4/25|

 

Battle Line Escort: Tradition of Excellence

Commander: Exodus, Inquisitor Barca

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Gladiator-Class Star Destroyer, Minotaur |35/25|

 

Sith Empire Destroyer Group [Turbolasers]: Focus Fire

Assigned PC: NPC (Qaela)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Assigned Callsign: Herløv

Kyber-Class Star Destroyer, Herløv |0/10|

RETREATED 

_________________________________________________________________________

 

Assault Lance [Kinetic Ram]: Juggernaught

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP

MC80a Star Cruiser The Prodigious |0/10|

 

 

Combat Air Patrol Carrier: No Fly Zone |Sergeti|

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP

Lucrehulk Control Core (LH-1740) Eye of Opulence |0/6|

MC30c frigate Tidewalker |3/3|

MC30c frigate  Blue Horizon |3/3|

Thranta-class corvette Dawn Sentry |2/1|

Thranta-class corvette Winning Hand |2/1|

 

 

Covert Strike Force: Silent Hunters

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 3XP

Nova-class Battle Cruiser Our Velvet Ire |9/9|

_________________________________________________________________________

 

 

Advanced Warfighter Cadre: Catastrophic Oracle

Commander: Nyrys

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Promised Razor: |3/9|
Lamia: |3/3|
Cassandra: |2/1|
Sibyl: |2/1|
Egeria: |2/1|
Pythia: |2/1|
RETREATED 


Tactical Support Escort: Wayward Serpent DESTROYED

Commander: Nyrys

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Temple of Vipers: |1/9|

Coiled Hatred: |3/3|
Nidhoggr: |1/1|
Moin: |2/1|
Goin: |2/1|
Svafnir: |2/1|

 

Green Precision Strike Carrier: Unforgiving Rebuke

Commander: Nyrys

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Myrmidon: |25/25|

Edited by Exodus

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Rebel Alliance Fleet Status: End of Round Five (Shields/Hull)

 

Royal Hapan Naval Precision Strike Carrier Group |Coldstream| Destroyed

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp) 

O/C-Battle dragon class Cruiser: Ri'Aldech |0/0|

 

Royal Hapan Naval Assault Lance [Kinetic Ram] |Kitchener|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

O/C-Battle dragon class Cruiser: Transvaal |21/25|

 

Royal Hapan Naval Heavy Brawler Escort |Zeeland|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

O/C-Battle dragon class Cruiser: Victoria |13/35|

 

Rebel Alliance Destroyer Group [Missiles] |One| 

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp)

KDY-Victory II-class Cruiser L'Ouverture |0/0|

KDY-Victory II-class Cruiser Gerrera |6/5|

  

Rebel Alliance Heavy Brawler Escort |Fidelity| 

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp)

MCS-MC90-class Star Cruiser Fidelity |5/35|

  

Rebel Alliance Precision Strike Carrier Group |Taffy-14| 

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp)

KDY-Nebula-class Star Destroyer Benediction |4/20|

 

Mandalorian Neo-Crusader Destroyer Group [Railguns] |Akalenedat|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

  • IPM Neo-Kandosii-class Battleship: Xaakzaamheid |25/25|

 

Mandalorian Neo-Crusader Destroyer Group [Missiles] |Bes'bev|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

  • IPM Neo-Kandosii-class Battleship: Nat’ah |25/25|

 

Mandalorian Neo-Crusader Light Defensive Escort: Suppressing Fire |Cabur| Withdrawn

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Vlissingen |3/3|
  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Leeuwarden |0/3|
  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Nassau |0/0|
  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Vrijheid |0/0|
  • IPM Jehavey'ir-class Assault Corvette Stavoren |2/1|
  • IPM Jehavey'ir-class Assault Corvette Oosterwijk |0/0|
  • IPM Jehavey'ir-class Assault Corvette Jaarsveld |0/0|

 

________

 

Adrmial Slaughter breathed a sigh of relief as Herlov, under heavy fire from the Mandalorians and armor wracked from forecastle to stern, began to withdraw. It soon passed out of the effective range of those two battleships, and the middle-aged officer breathed a quiet admonition over the comlink to redirect their firepower to other targets. The view outside Fidelity’s canopy was still ablaze with missile streaks and explosions as starfighters found their marks; the engines of the surviving Hapan Battle Dragons seemed to glow with a hint of red under the blue-white of the sublight emissions; every report from Benediction indicated that fewer and fewer bombers were returning to its decks with each successive strike.

 

But the enemy was suffering more severely than them. It was possible that this day would end in victory… and then the difficult part of his job would begin.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Rebel Alliance

Offensive Actions

|Kitchener| Attacks |Sergeti| (6 damage)
|One| Attacks |Unforgiving Rebuke| (4 damage)

|Akalenedat| Attacks |Juggernaut(6 damage)
|Bes'bev| Attacks |Juggernaut(4 damage)
|Taffy-14| Attacks |Unforgiving Rebuke| 2 x Bombers Inbound (6 damage to hull)

|Fleet Commander Starfighter Action| Bombers Inbound on |Unforgiving Rebuke| (3 damage to hull)
|Fleet Commander Starfighter Action| Bombers Inbound on |Goliath| (3 damage)

 

Defensive Actions

|Fidelity| attaches to |Kitchener| 

|Zeeland| continues to escort |Taffy-14|

|Fleet Commander Starfighter Action| Interception (Focused Deployment on |Taffy-14|)

 

Total Damage Received:

4 damage to |One| straight to cruiser from bombers

11 damage to |Taffy-14|

8 damage to |Zeeland|

 

Sith Empire

Offensive Actions

Fleet Command (Flagship) attacks |One| (6 damage)
Assault Lance [Kinetic Ram]: Juggernaught attacks |One| (4 damage)

Stealth Ship [Name Redacted] applies banked damage (9) on |Taffy-14|

BI on |Taffy-14| (3 damage)
BI on |Taffy-14| (3 damage)

BI on |One| (3 damage to hull)

BI on |One| (3 damage to hull)

BI on |One| (3 damage to hull)

 

Defensive Actions

Battle Line Escort: Tradition of Excellence escorts Flagship
Inter (focused deployment) on |Juggernaut|

Inter (focused deployment) on |Juggernaut|

 

 

Stealth scans reveal nothing.

 

Mod note: Sorry for the delay. Doing all the math for y'all has not only led to a host of mistakes on my end but has also added to the time it takes for me to get these results up considerably. I will no longer be attempting to do that in the hopes that I can start pounding these out much faster- sorry for the inconvenience.

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As the prow of the Sith defense carrier crumpled under the ram's assault, Captain Esterhazy let her smile grow almost feral. She held onto the railing that gave her the purest view as half a dozen Sith ships as they turned from beautiful sleek lines of durasteel into a mess of white fire. 

 

“Turn off the Lance! Let the escape pods get clear, then prepare for another run.” 

 

She sat back down in her command chair as her aide brought her a cup of tea. For the fight was going well. And Soon Fondor would be another redoubt of the Rebel Alliance.

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((The HP remaining for |Kitchener| is based on conversations that we had over the Invasion of Fondor channel in the Discord.))

 

Royal Hapan Naval Precision Strike Carrier Group |Coldstream| Destroyed

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp) 

O/C-Battle dragon class Cruiser: Ri'Aldech |0/0|

 

Royal Hapan Naval Assault Lance [Kinetic Ram] |Kitchener|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

O/C-Battle dragon class Cruiser: Transvaal |9/25|

 

Royal Hapan Naval Heavy Brawler Escort |Zeeland|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

O/C-Battle dragon class Cruiser: Victoria |13/35|

 

Rebel Alliance Destroyer Group [Missiles] |One| Destroyed

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp)

KDY-Victory II-class Cruiser L'Ouverture |0/0|

KDY-Victory II-class Cruiser Gerrera |0/0|

  

Rebel Alliance Heavy Brawler Escort |Fidelity| 

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp)

MCS-MC90-class Star Cruiser Fidelity |5/35|

  

Rebel Alliance Precision Strike Carrier Group |Taffy-14| 

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp)

KDY-Nebula-class Star Destroyer Benediction |0/9|

 

Mandalorian Neo-Crusader Destroyer Group [Railguns] |Akalenedat|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

  • IPM Neo-Kandosii-class Battleship: Xaakzaamheid |25/25|

 

Mandalorian Neo-Crusader Destroyer Group [Missiles] |Bes'bev|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

  • IPM Neo-Kandosii-class Battleship: Nat’ah |25/25|

 

Mandalorian Neo-Crusader Light Defensive Escort: Suppressing Fire |Cabur| Withdrawn

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Vlissingen |3/3|
  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Leeuwarden |0/3|
  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Nassau |0/0|
  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Vrijheid |0/0|
  • IPM Jehavey'ir-class Assault Corvette Stavoren |2/1|
  • IPM Jehavey'ir-class Assault Corvette Oosterwijk |0/0|
  • IPM Jehavey'ir-class Assault Corvette Jaarsveld |0/0|

 

________



 

The Rebel Admiral aboard Fidelity gave a long, slow blink. His eyes burning, Slaughter realized that it had been several minutes since he last dared to look away from his command post, even as the ghost of an shower of severed girders drifted by in the bridge’s canopy. That Hapan battering ram--an assault lance was the technical term, he only just remembered--had plowed through the hull of the Lucrehulk-class Cruiser, scattering debris and escape pods in its wake. Massive portions of the ship began to go dark--the ship was almost certainly incapacitated, perhaps even doomed to reactor overload. A flight of spiteful interceptors, either launched to escape from the dying ship or determined to avenge its wounds, strafed Fidelity’s bow. A ripple of molten armor cascaded into space, but those interceptors were soon set upon by a trio of Mandalorian droid-mounts.

 

Fidelity, the grand old lady that she was, was still holding together. Barely.

 

The same could not be said for the rest of his task force. The Nebula-class Star Destroyer Benediction, on its homecoming campaign to Fondor, suffered another one of the devastating turbolaser strikes from the cloaked cruiser. The last of the ships acquired from Black Sun, Gerrera, suffered a similar assault as a Mon Calamari-built cruiser plowed into the Victory-class Star Destroyer’s bridge and carried the entire superstructure away with it. That ship, however, was finally crippled by a sustained barrage from the Mandalorians.

 

“Those gunnery crews must be having the times of their lives. How many kills, and barely more than token return fire.” Slaughter grumbled. His hazel eyes stared daggers into the flanks of the Star Dreadnought opposing him. “Come on, signal retreat. You can’t win this one…”

 

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SITH EMPIRE

ROUND FIVE.

 

 

Fleet Command (Flagship)

High Command: Exodus, Inquisitor Barca

Augmentation: Axial Weapon (MK-I), Ultra-Heavy Flak Cannons (MK-I)

Xhendora-Class Dreadnought, Goliath |1/25|

 

Battle Line Escort: Tradition of Excellence

Commander: Exodus, Inquisitor Barca

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Gladiator-Class Star Destroyer, Minotaur |35/25|

 

Sith Empire Destroyer Group [Turbolasers]: Focus Fire

Assigned PC: NPC (Qaela)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Assigned Callsign: Herløv

Kyber-Class Star Destroyer, Herløv |0/10|

RETREATED 

_________________________________________________________________________

 

Assault Lance [Kinetic Ram]: Juggernaught

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP

MC80a Star Cruiser The Prodigious |0/10|

DESTROYED

 

Combat Air Patrol Carrier: No Fly Zone |Sergeti|

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP

Lucrehulk Control Core (LH-1740) Eye of Opulence |0/6|

MC30c frigate Tidewalker |3/3|

MC30c frigate  Blue Horizon |3/3|

Thranta-class corvette Dawn Sentry |2/1|

Thranta-class corvette Winning Hand |2/1|

DESTROYED

 

Covert Strike Force: Silent Hunters

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 3XP

Nova-class Battle Cruiser Our Velvet Ire |9/9|

_________________________________________________________________________

 

 

Advanced Warfighter Cadre: Catastrophic Oracle

Commander: Nyrys

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Promised Razor: |3/9|
Lamia: |3/3|
Cassandra: |2/1|
Sibyl: |2/1|
Egeria: |2/1|
Pythia: |2/1|
RETREATED 


Tactical Support Escort: Wayward Serpent DESTROYED

Commander: Nyrys

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Temple of Vipers: |1/9|

Coiled Hatred: |3/3|
Nidhoggr: |1/1|
Moin: |2/1|
Goin: |2/1|
Svafnir: |2/1|

 

Green Precision Strike Carrier: Unforgiving Rebuke

Commander: Nyrys

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Myrmidon: |21/16|

 

________

 

 

The Imperial Admiral counted the losses methodically, understanding that warships lost on both sides were near evenly matched, despite the defeaning silence that sat within the ships of his allies. There was a suffocating loneliness that stifled the communication systems; just cold and calculated reports of damages and confirmed kills, panoramic displays of high-value targets ramming into one another and detonating in a grand splurge of ordinary life-forms. The Emperor had counted on this, but how could he know before it happened? Did he count on the desperate warmongering of the Rebel contingencies? Or was there greater work afoot?

 

The Admiral shook the thoughts from his mind as another successful bombing run rattled into another enemy Carrier. The manuoevers executed here would be cataloged and praised in bravery whether the Admiral lived to see another day, or burned on the fraying corpse of this Flagship. It would be known that here, the Admiral stood by himself, in the face of his enemies, ensuring that enough time would pass.

 

"The mission will soon be complete."

 

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Rebel Alliance

Offensive Actions

|Kitchener| Attacks |Goliath| (6 damage)

|Akalenedat| Attacks |Unforgiving Rebuke| (6 damage)
|Bes'bev| Attacks |Unforgiving Rebuke| (4 damage)
|Taffy-14| Attacks |Unforgiving Rebuke| 2 x Bombers Inbound (6 damage to hull)

|Fleet Commander Starfighter Action| Bombers Inbound on |Goliath| (3 damage to hull)
|Fleet Commander Starfighter Action| Bombers Inbound on |Goliath| (3 damage to hull)

 

Defensive Actions

|Fidelity| continues to escort |Kitchener| 

|Zeeland| continues to escort |Taffy-14|

|Fleet Commander Starfighter Action| Interception (Forward Deployment)

 

 

 

Sith Empire

Offensive Actions

Fleet Command (Flagship) attacks |Akalenedat| (6 damage)

BI on |Kitchener(3 damage to hull)
BI on |Kitchener(3 damage to hull)

BI on |Taffy-14| (3 damage to hull)

BI on |Taffy-14| (3 damage to hull)

BI on |Taffy-14| (3 damage to hull)

 

Defensive Actions

Battle Line Escort: Tradition of Excellence escorts Flagship (Receives 3 Damage from ram)

 

 

Stealth scans reveal nothing.

 

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Rebel Alliance Fleet Status: End of Round Seven (Shields/Hull)

 

Royal Hapan Naval Precision Strike Carrier Group |Coldstream| Destroyed

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp) 

O/C-Battle dragon class Cruiser: Ri'Aldech |0/0|

 

Royal Hapan Naval Assault Lance [Kinetic Ram] |Kitchener|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

O/C-Battle dragon class Cruiser: Transvaal |9/19|

 

Royal Hapan Naval Heavy Brawler Escort |Zeeland|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

O/C-Battle dragon class Cruiser: Victoria |13/35|

 

Rebel Alliance Destroyer Group [Missiles] |One| Destroyed

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp)

KDY-Victory II-class Cruiser L'Ouverture |0/0|

KDY-Victory II-class Cruiser Gerrera |0/0|

  

Rebel Alliance Heavy Brawler Escort |Fidelity| 

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp)

MCS-MC90-class Star Cruiser Fidelity |5/35|

  

Rebel Alliance Precision Strike Carrier Group |Taffy-14| Destroyed

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp)

KDY-Nebula-class Star Destroyer Benediction |0/0|

 

Mandalorian Neo-Crusader Destroyer Group [Railguns] |Akalenedat|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

  • IPM Neo-Kandosii-class Battleship: Xaakzaamheid |19/25|

 

Mandalorian Neo-Crusader Destroyer Group [Missiles] |Bes'bev|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

  • IPM Neo-Kandosii-class Battleship: Nat’ah |25/25|

 

Mandalorian Neo-Crusader Light Defensive Escort: Suppressing Fire |Cabur| Withdrawn

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Vlissingen |3/3|

  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Leeuwarden |0/3|

  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Nassau |0/0|

  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Vrijheid |0/0|

  • IPM Jehavey'ir-class Assault Corvette Stavoren |2/1|

  • IPM Jehavey'ir-class Assault Corvette Oosterwijk |0/0|

  • IPM Jehavey'ir-class Assault Corvette Jaarsveld |0/0|

________

 

 

Another of those growling sighs rumbled its way from Slaughter’s throat as the damage report was bellowed from across the bridge. A squadron of TIEs were escaping from their successful bombing run, pursued by vengeful A-Wings, but the damage was already done. From his perspective, it appeared that Homecoming was lost. The armored recess that housed her bridge had been pummeled into a smoking crater, and two of her hangar decks were spouting great jets of flame, casting an orange-red pall on every object from kilometers away. Her refueling lines must have been compromised--that was enough to kill a battlecruiser, let alone a gutted carrier like the refitted Star Destroyer.

 

There had been something said about “acceptable losses” in his briefing files. From his perspective, acceptable losses included almost everything as long as Fondor’s shipyards were taken intact; the abandoned hulks could be rebuilt. However, with the loss of one of the Hapan Battle Dragons and the loss of a number of the Mandalorian frigates, there was a possibility that the strategic implications to those fragile alliances would outweigh even the gain of those shipyards.

 

There was no time to wonder about that. He could almost… feel the Sith breaking. There was a precious tension in the air. Comms chatter in the background squawked that one of Goliath’s shield generators had been hit and one of the Hapan commanders was excited about… something.

 

Homecoming, this is Fidelity Actual. Abandon ship. I repeat, signal abandon ship. You’ve done everything you can for us. Helm! Close to point-blank range. Rotate ninety degrees port. And Tal’dira--have our marines report to their shuttles.”

 

______

 

Homecoming, possibly the last of the Galactic Alliance’s Star Destroyers to have floated from Fondor’s orbital shipyards, had turned to a charnel house in the wake of that last starfighter assault. The severity of the damage was evident even from the exterior: one of its great sunlight engines was flickering madly in the void; the recessed bow where the ship’s bridge should have been had been turned into a crater; the dagger-like ship was burning from stem to stern and a fount of flame was issuing from one of its hangar. A quartet of point-defense towers were continuing to spit vermillion at the fleeing TIEs, but most of its self-defense measures consisted of a debris field that surrounded the ship.

 

From any informed observer’s perspective, the ship was lost.

 

The ship’s Senior Chief Petty Officer chose to remain in ignorance. Even as the command went out over the PA to abandon the ship, the Devaronian diverted from the pathway to the nearest escape pod to enter the Aft Damage Control station. The room was barely larger than a closet--in a cheap apartment, at that--and every square centimeter of the station’s walls were lined with switches and valves that controlled the less glamorous functions of the ship: the air conditioning, the power grid, hot water… and the refueling lines that ran to the hangars. From his position, he could subject the entire ship’s crew to a gasping death by asphyxiation.

 

That same power could help him save it.

 

Chief T’Veq’s first course of action was to study a detailed map of the ship’s fuel lines: most critically those that ran close to the warhead magazines. Nodding and giving a grin that would frighten a nexu, he calmly walked from one side of the room to the other, shutting down oxygen generators and flooding the ship’s plumbing with halon gas. The loss of life-support was no concern considering that the crew would evacuate within minutes. The damage to the ship from having its plumbing flooded with extinguisher foam would lay it in dry dock for months, but it might just save it from a cataclysmic explosion. His next action was to begin sealing blast doors--including the ones that would protect his station. 

 

He did not wonder how long it would take before carbon dioxide poisoning killed him. He expected to use his sidearm long before that became a concern.

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SITH EMPIRE

ROUND SEVEN.

 

 

Fleet Command (Flagship)

High Command: Exodus, Inquisitor Barca

Augmentation: Axial Weapon (MK-I), Ultra-Heavy Flak Cannons (MK-I)

Xhendora-Class Dreadnought, Goliath |0/17|

 

Battle Line Escort: Tradition of Excellence

Commander: Exodus, Inquisitor Barca

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Gladiator-Class Star Destroyer, Minotaur |32/25|

 

Sith Empire Destroyer Group [Turbolasers]: Focus Fire

Assigned PC: NPC (Qaela)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Assigned Callsign: Herløv

Kyber-Class Star Destroyer, Herløv |0/10|

RETREATED 

_________________________________________________________________________

 

Assault Lance [Kinetic Ram]: Juggernaught

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP

MC80a Star Cruiser The Prodigious |0/10|

DESTROYED

 

Combat Air Patrol Carrier: No Fly Zone |Sergeti|

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP

Lucrehulk Control Core (LH-1740) Eye of Opulence |0/6|

MC30c frigate Tidewalker |3/3|

MC30c frigate  Blue Horizon |3/3|

Thranta-class corvette Dawn Sentry |2/1|

Thranta-class corvette Winning Hand |2/1|

DESTROYED

 

Covert Strike Force: Silent Hunters

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 3XP

Nova-class Battle Cruiser Our Velvet Ire |9/9|

_________________________________________________________________________

 

 

Advanced Warfighter Cadre: Catastrophic Oracle

Commander: Nyrys

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Promised Razor: |3/9|
Lamia: |3/3|
Cassandra: |2/1|
Sibyl: |2/1|
Egeria: |2/1|
Pythia: |2/1|
RETREATED 


Tactical Support Escort: Wayward Serpent DESTROYED

Commander: Nyrys

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Temple of Vipers: |1/9|

Coiled Hatred: |3/3|
Nidhoggr: |1/1|
Moin: |2/1|
Goin: |2/1|
Svafnir: |2/1|

 

Green Precision Strike Carrier: Unforgiving Rebuke

Commander: Nyrys

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Myrmidon: |11/10|

 

________

 

 

The Xhendora-Class Dreadnought hovered over the esteemed shipyard installation, its forward batteries raining beautiful death on the Rebel formations. On the tactical screen on the flagship's nigh-transparent deflector shields flickered and died. A few more bursts, and the display informed the tactical officer that the warship shield output had seized being operational. "The installation is mostly evacuated of civilian hosts, Captain Zloth'cal'duorii," the officer reported.

 

The Captain of the Goliath nodded briskly. Zloth'cal'duorii was a thin, contentious man with cold virulent eyes, who had been in Imperial service since just after the end of the Onderonion Wars. "Excellent. Inform the boarding parties that they may proceed." Dozens of troop transports had previously launched from the Star Destroyer's hanger carrying specialized Imperial stormtroopers who would assist those that already occupied the defended shipyards, heading at their sluggish but sure pace for the installation. The Captain watched from the forward bridge, monitoring their progress on a tactical readout. The transports had heavy shields, but for the most part, held a direct line to the asset that they still had a loose grip on defending.  When the transports reached the station's docking bay, shields dropping as they maneuvered to dock, the stormtroopers would fan out and reinforce the current manifest of largely deployed ground units. One of the Destroyer's numerous TIE squadrons swung around the transports in lazy loops, sensors scanning for any sign of Rebel interference. So far, the backdrop had been relatively clear, save for the bombing runs that chipped away at the stalwart formation of both the Goliath and the Minotaur.

 

Omega Six braced for the jolt as the launch tractors grabbed her TIE and flung the tiny craft away from the hull of the Goliath. Punching the engines to full, she swung about and fell in beside Atom's craft. They formed behind the two TIEs piloted by Howl and Huntress. The old man's voice came over the comm. "Omega Wing, this is Omega Leader. Omega Five and Six, hang back and screen our objectives for any designated attack. Green on proton torpedo deployment, let them fly."

 

"Copy, Omega Leader," Six acknowledged, though she was challenged by the direction personally. 

 

"Omega Six, this is Five," said 'Bucktoe', sounding troublesome as usual. "Did yah see how they peeled back that Nebula-class? Real cowboy shit if you ask me! Are we fixin' ta just sit 'ere and wait for 'em to tag these yellowbellies? These no-good rebel pilots are dropping like flies, they can't fly like us honey!"

 

"Yes, Five, we're going to just sit here," 'Red Fox' said through clenched teeth. "But for crying out loud, Buck, be quiet. This is an open channel."

 

"That's good advice, Buck." Huntress' voice said, level as always. "I suggest you take it."

 

"Copy that, ladies," he said ruefully, watching as the rest of the Wing tore the opposition to shreds, wondering just how long the fleet itself had to hold out for.

 

 

 

 

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Rebel Alliance

Offensive Actions

|Kitchener| Attacks |Goliath| (6 damage)

|Akalenedat| Attacks |Unforgiving Rebuke| (6 damage)
|Bes'bev| Attacks |Unforgiving Rebuke| (4 damage)

|Fleet Commander Starfighter Action| Bombers Inbound on |Goliath| redirected to the |Tradition of Excellence| (2 damage to hull)
|Fleet Commander Starfighter Action| Bombers Inbound on |Goliath| redirected to the |Unforgiving Rebuke| (2 damage to hull)

 

Defensive Actions

|Fidelity| continues to escort |Kitchener| 

|Zeeland| begins to reposition

|Fleet Commander Starfighter Action| Interception (Focused Deployment on |Kitchener|)

 

 

 

Sith Empire

Offensive Actions

Fleet Command (Flagship) attacks |Akalenedat| (6 damage)

Stealth Ship [Name Redacted] applies banked damage (3) on |Kitchener|

BI on |Kitchener(3 damage to hull)
BI on |Kitchener(3 damage to hull)

 

Defensive Actions

Battle Line Escort: Tradition of Excellence escorts Flagship (Receives 3 Damage from ram)

Interception (focused deployment) on Flagship

Interception (focused deployment) on Flagship

Interception (focused deployment) on Flagship

 

Stealth scans reveal nothing.

Edited by Mavanger

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Rebel Alliance Fleet Status: End of Round Eight (Shields/Hull)

 

Royal Hapan Naval Precision Strike Carrier Group |Coldstream| Destroyed

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp) 

O/C-Battle dragon class Cruiser: Ri'Aldech |0/0|

 

Royal Hapan Naval Assault Lance [Kinetic Ram] |Kitchener|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

O/C-Battle dragon class Cruiser: Transvaal |0/19|

 

Royal Hapan Naval Heavy Brawler Escort |Zeeland|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

O/C-Battle dragon class Cruiser: Victoria |13/35|

 

Rebel Alliance Destroyer Group [Missiles] |One| Destroyed

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp)

KDY-Victory II-class Cruiser L'Ouverture |0/0|

KDY-Victory II-class Cruiser Gerrera |0/0|

  

Rebel Alliance Heavy Brawler Escort |Fidelity| 

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp)

MCS-MC90-class Star Cruiser Fidelity |5/35|

  

Rebel Alliance Precision Strike Carrier Group |Taffy-14| Destroyed

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp)

KDY-Nebula-class Star Destroyer Benediction |0/0|

 

Mandalorian Neo-Crusader Destroyer Group [Railguns] |Akalenedat|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

  • IPM Neo-Kandosii-class Battleship: Xaakzaamheid |13/25|

 

Mandalorian Neo-Crusader Destroyer Group [Missiles] |Bes'bev|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

  • IPM Neo-Kandosii-class Battleship: Nat’ah |25/25|

 

Mandalorian Neo-Crusader Light Defensive Escort: Suppressing Fire |Cabur| Withdrawn

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Vlissingen |3/3|
  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Leeuwarden |0/3|
  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Nassau |0/0|
  • IPM Fane-of-Swords-class Frigate Vrijheid |0/0|
  • HpIPM Jehavey'ir-class Assault Corvette Stavoren |2/1|
  • IPM Jehavey'ir-class Assault Corvette Oosterwijk |0/0|
  • IPM Jehavey'ir-class Assault Corvette Jaarsveld |0/0|

 

________


 

"Sir, shuttle launches from Goliath! Headed towards the shipyards."

 

Slaughter's jaw ached as he grit his teeth. Undoubtedly those shuttles were troop transports: lightly armed, loaded to the gills with men and materiel and orders to turn the Fondor shipyards into a battleground. Or worse, the Sith may have made the decision to go scorched-earth and scuttle the entire facility--more likely the latter, given that the multiple entry points of a civilian shipyard made them difficult to reinforce against assault. 

 

This was work with which the Admiral was much better acquainted. He had been raised into the Rebel Alliance as an infantryman, and conducting an assault against a strategically important position was one of few operations that he could claim expertise in. It would require heavily-armed, highly-motivated shock troopers that could swarm upon the position from multiple vectors. Close air support from friendly craft--preferably armed gunboats or assault shuttles--was essential to overwhelm the opposition. Minor hull breaches or collateral damage could be repaired at their own expense. Losing the operational capacity of the shipyards, on the other hand, would be a disaster.

 

Fortunately, the Rebel Alliance had recently made liaison with a warband that matched those requirements perfectly.

 

“Comms, signal the Mandos. Tell them that the enemy have begun occupying the shipyards. We require that they begin the assault at first opportunity. They may coordinate directly with Captain Eikh’mir of our marines in the second wave.”

 

The next few seconds were spent barking orders at helm to close further with the wounded Star Dreadnought--to park the damned ship in their fracking hangar if he could manage it were his exact words--but the decision of the Mandalorian Crusaders was an immediate concern. Slaughter was in no position to demand that these allies sell their lives for the benefit of an organization that they had recently been at war against. Faced with a command to make the first wave of assaults on a fortified position, they may well have refused the order. But if their glory-hungry warrior culture was really as pervasive as their war cries and droid-mounts suggested, they might relish the opportunity to fight their opponents face-to-face.

 

They appeared to leap at the opportunity. As the Mon Calamari cruiser descended into the Sith flagship’s keel and the hull of the great ship became his horizon, the Rebel Admiral saw hundreds of pinpricks of light--the strange, multi-directional sublight arrays that the Mandalorians favored--divert their attention from Goliath and race towards the Fondorian shipyards. The middle-aged officer sighed in satisfaction. Those Basilisk droid-mounts and their masters would be devastating in close-quarters. The shipyards might suffer collateral damage, but that was a problem for later.

 

The more immediate concern was finding a way to trap the battered Sith flagship into a duel from which there would be no escape...

 

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SITH EMPIRE

ROUND EIGHT.

 

 

Fleet Command (Flagship)

High Command: Exodus, Inquisitor Barca

Augmentation: Axial Weapon (MK-I), Ultra-Heavy Flak Cannons (MK-I)

Xhendora-Class Dreadnought, Goliath |0/14|

 

Battle Line Escort: Tradition of Excellence

Commander: Exodus, Inquisitor Barca

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Gladiator-Class Star Destroyer, Minotaur |32/23|

 

Sith Empire Destroyer Group [Turbolasers]: Focus Fire

Assigned PC: NPC (Qaela)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Assigned Callsign: Herløv

Kyber-Class Star Destroyer, Herløv |0/10|

RETREATED 

_________________________________________________________________________

 

Assault Lance [Kinetic Ram]: Juggernaught

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP

MC80a Star Cruiser The Prodigious |0/10|

DESTROYED

 

Combat Air Patrol Carrier: No Fly Zone |Sergeti|

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP

Lucrehulk Control Core (LH-1740) Eye of Opulence |0/6|

MC30c frigate Tidewalker |3/3|

MC30c frigate  Blue Horizon |3/3|

Thranta-class corvette Dawn Sentry |2/1|

Thranta-class corvette Winning Hand |2/1|

DESTROYED

 

Covert Strike Force: Silent Hunters

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 3XP

Nova-class Battle Cruiser Our Velvet Ire |9/9|

_________________________________________________________________________

 

 

Advanced Warfighter Cadre: Catastrophic Oracle

Commander: Nyrys

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Promised Razor: |3/9|
Lamia: |3/3|
Cassandra: |2/1|
Sibyl: |2/1|
Egeria: |2/1|
Pythia: |2/1|
RETREATED 


Tactical Support Escort: Wayward Serpent DESTROYED

Commander: Nyrys

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Temple of Vipers: |1/9|

Coiled Hatred: |3/3|
Nidhoggr: |1/1|
Moin: |2/1|
Goin: |2/1|
Svafnir: |2/1|

 

Green Precision Strike Carrier: Unforgiving Rebuke

Commander: Nyrys

Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Myrmidon: |1/8|

 

________

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Rebel Alliance

Offensive Actions

|Kitchener| Attacks |Goliath| (6 damage)

|Akalenedat| Attacks |Unforgiving Rebuke| (6 damage)
|Bes'bev| Attacks |Unforgiving Rebuke| (4 damage)

|Fleet Commander Starfighter Action| Bombers Inbound on |Goliath| (Escorted by |Fleet Commander Starfighter Action| Fighter Escort, 3 damage)

 

Defensive Actions

|Fidelity| continues to escort |Kitchener| 

|Zeeland| escorts |Akalenedat|

|Fleet Commander Starfighter Action| Interception (Forward Deployment)

 

 

 

Sith Empire

Defensive Actions

Battle Line Escort: Tradition of Excellence escorts Flagship

Sith Empire retreats all forces

Interception (Focused) on Fleet Command (Flagship)
Interception (Focused) on Fleet Command (Flagship)
Interception (Focused) on Fleet Command (Flagship)

Stealth scans reveal Covert Strike Force: Silent Hunters

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“No, damn you!” Plastic crinkled in protest as Slaughter reached to grip the comms transceiver, as though throttling an inanimate object would somehow speed the destruction of the enemy fleet. A heavy force of bombers had taken advantage of the close quarters between Fidelity and Goliath to infiltrate between their salvos and blast indiscriminately at its keel; with the batteries of the two flagships blazing away at each other in the cramped space, the environment was almost as hostile to the Sith interceptors as it was to a daring squadron of B-Wings.

 

But despite the fires and arcs of lightning that were spreading over the hull of the dreadnought, its engines were intact and it was gaining speed… and vectoring away from the orbital shipyards. Fidelity began to way and present its undamaged starboard broadside for a final volley, but that last dose of hate was intercepted by the shields of its undamaged escort.

 

Only a few minutes later, the firing had died down significantly. Rebel starfighters and Mandalorian Basilisks were continuing to flit around the Fondor shipyards and drive away troop transports, but the great guns had no more targets to engage. Dozens of LAAT/i gunships were en route to the shipyards, and the air in Fidelity’s bridge was filled with the chatter of those transports and translations of the argot favored by the Mandalorians. Half listening to reports as marine squads breached airlocks and the Mandalorians prepared to storm the docking bays, Slaughter muttered a coded transmission burst to his handlers.

 

Red and Black, this is Fidelity Actual. Sith fleet units have retreated from Fondor orbit. Sith losses are severe. Heavy damage inflicted to Goliath. Allied losses are significant--heavy losses to all starfighter assets. Will detail later. We believe that some of the Sith have holed up in the orbital shipyards to make a final stand. Conjecture: possible sabotage operation underway. Have begun boarding operations to take command. Requesting further orders.”

 

Slaughter made a sharp gesture to his comms officer, signaling to terminate and transmit the encrypted burst. On a less secure local comlink, he addressed the Hapan commander while his staff searched for someone who could speak for the Mandalorian squadron. Hunched over his post, the Admiral growled out his message, trying to keep the exhaustion out of his voice.

 

“Admiral, I want to express my… the gratitude of the Rebel Alliance for your assistance here. The day’s not over, but… these shipyards will be a significant asset in our fight against the Sith Empire. I hope I will someday have an opportunity to convey my gratitude face-to-face. Slaughter, out.”

 

Ending the transmission, Slaughter slowly walked to the edge of the bridge, so close to the canopy that he could feel the tendrils of vacuum seep in through a hairline fracture in a cold grip on his neck. Debris and bodies littered Fondor’s orbit. One of the two VicStars that had been salvaged from Black Sun had been snapped in half and was floating lifelessly in orbit. The other was simply… gone. Benediction, that tough Star Destroyer that supposedly could have dueled Fidelity to a standstill, was a still, fire-licked hulk. Somehow it had yet to break apart--despite all expectations. He could not allow himself to feel exaltation at this minor victory. Not after suffering these losses. Not when Fondor had yet to be liberated from the Sith. Not when he was this tired.

 

“I need caf. Strong. ‘spresso. Stims. Amphetamines, whatever, I don’t care. The day’s not done.”

 

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She felt like a recently punctured balloon, her energy draining from her in a single swoop. Stumbling, she let herself sink into the hard backed admirals chair and finally looked at the holo reports. She sighed looking at the solid red readout for the Ri'Aldech. This was not a disastrous loss, she had expected a Battle Dragon to be lost at some point in her career, but Princess Eleanor Sar Esterhazy did not expect such a heavy toll so quickly. The shipyards had been  soundly captured, the Sith fleet soundly defeated, but the Rebel fleet was now thoroughly damaged. It would take time to repair. 

 

“Message on screen for you Princess.”

 

She straightened her back and let Slaughter speak before inclining her head. He was an attractive male, and talented, in the same way many fathers were attractive. SHe did not normally swing that way but after a battle she could be convi-

 

But he had cut the transmission and she was left foolishly looking into an empty holo display. 

 

“Tac get me the indepth damage reports. Call in the support wings and start a sweep for EV and pods. Fighters and Bombers left alive from the Ri'Aldech can dock in shifts until we get a replacement carrier” 

 

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“Much better. Credit to the service you are, Lieutenant.” Slaughter rumbled happily to a Gotal who had had the thankless task of bringing a superior officer their coffee. “Navy strength” had been his instructions, and the beverage that he nearly downed in a single gulp was hot and strong enough to strip oxidation from sublight engines. It was the kind of coffee that probably needed to be declared a controlled substance--the kind that made dentists wince--the kind that was fuel to a proud naval officer. The Admiral blinked hard and wiped a dribble of the liquid from the corner of his mouth.

 

“Tal’dira, you have the conn--”

 

“--Aye, sir, I have the conn--” Came the rote response from his Twi’lek executive officer.

 

“I’m moving my command to the shipyards,” Slaughter rumbled on at an almost manic pace as he strode from the bridge, accompanied by a command staff and several armored marines. “Gotta see what’s happening down there. Can’t see spast from the ship. Broadcast standard calls to surrender--”

 

“Sir--”

 

 “And see if you can grab someone who can hand those shipyards back over to us.” Another set of technicians joined the command staff as they turned down the warship’s previously pristine corridors and ducked under a collapsed ventilation duct. “Let’m know we won’t be interfering with their internal gov-ment, contracts are whatever we had negotiated before the Sith showed up--”

 

“--Sir--”

 

“And begin rescue and salvage operations. I don’t think we’ll be working the heavy guns anymore. And find out what’s happening aboard Benny--she was undergoing a core meltdown five minutes ago--”

 

“--Sir--”

 

“And… that’s about it.” Slaughter rumbled happily as another aide handed over a fresh tumbler of navy-strength caf. He continued on his manic string of orders as he boarded his personal transport and grunted at the minor effort of the meter-high separation from the hovering larty and the hangar deck. “Remember, play nice with these boys. They’re civilians--keep them happy, paid, and safe, and they might even waive overtime fees, just for us. Irritate them, and they’ll drown us in red tape.”

 

“Aye, sir! And have fun on the ground.”

 

Oh, yes, yes I will…” The Admiral muttered to himself as the sliding doors slammed shut and the gunship lifted from the deck with a startling jostle. Shifting his weight out of habit, Slaughter stared out of the compartment’s slats as he donned a plastoid breastplate in well-practiced motions. Gerrera and L’Ouverture were probably total losses, floating about space in pieces, but their missile magazines needed to be recovered. Same went for Benediction--the Nebula-class Star Destroyer had gone completely dark and was just drifting at the sedate speed of a few meters per second. It was possible that some mad engineer had ignored orders to evacuate and had instead flooded the ship’s full interior with fire retardants.

 

That was a very brave decision. Stupid, probably suicidal, but they might just save the hull--if only Fondor could muster a few tugs to halt its drifting away from Fondor’s gravity well....

 

____

 

A few minutes later, the selfsame gunship had touched down in a docking bay at the periphery of the Fondor orbital shipyards, and Slaughter hopped down onto the deck and took a deep breath. Blaster oxidation was faint in the air--one of the Mandalorian Basilisks was burning at the edge of the magcon field--and the sounds of blaster fire and shouted orders could still be heard very faintly. The fighting was barely more than two hundred meters away, so close that a determined counterattack could even overrun this location. He took another deep breath. Yes, this was a much more suitable location for his command post than the bridge of a shielded Mon Calamari cruiser, kilometers above the battleground.

 

Two of the technicians opened an armored crate, revealing a portable holoprojector. Slaughter stared into the floating image of the shipyards and the blue and green dots that are infiltrating into the hologram. From here, he could monitor the entire assault and even take command if needed.

 

“Besh company…” He muttered to himself, zooming in on a unit that was within meters of the shipyard’s orbital command center, a square room that could potentially direct the entire installation to burn up in atmosphere and explode in a horrific reactor accident. It was a natural location for the Sith troopers to make a final stand, as its only vulnerability lay in a number of ventilation shafts that were far too small for most sapients to infiltrate. “Delay for a few minutes. Send ‘em some MSEs from the fleet--can modify those buggers to provide cam feed or even…”

 

The stocky man began to chuckle darkly under his breath. The orders were sent out--delay the final assault for a few minutes and let the Sith listen to the recorded offers of terms of surrender. In the meantime, the Rebel marines would prepare a final assault that few units would be able to withstand.

 

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Ten minutes passed, in which the few surviving members of the Sith resistance continued to listen to prerecorded messages informing the command center’s defenders of their certain doom; ten minutes as the distant blaster fire grew less frantic. Then two more minutes passed, this time with the pre-recorded message replaced by a message from the Rebel Admiral.

 

“This is Admiral Bruce Slaughter of the Rebel Alliance,” came the dreaded, gravelly voice. Some of the veterans of the Sith Empire might have remembered these ultimatums from events that haunted them on Sullust, Gala, or Coruscant. “Your defenders in orbit have been routed. The remaining Sith on board the shipyards have been captured or killed. Your comrades have fought well--stubbornly--but there is nothing to be gained from further struggle. You have sixty seconds to surrender your arms, save yourselves, sit out the rest of the war. Then… we will see what fate has in store.”

 

During that time, a pair of MSE-7 droids had infiltrated into the crawlspaces surrounding the command center. One of the mousy droids had ventured into the maintenance crawlspaces directly underneath the room, taking hazy pictures of the locations of the Sith defenders with its thermal sensors; it was poor image quality that gave little data regarding their equipment, but nonetheless useful for estimating the strength of the defenders. The second took a somewhat more daring approach. It motored along the air vents that ran along the ceiling, rattling the inexpensive riveting as it went along. A pair of blaster carbines immediately tracked the progress of the muted racket--and a lengthy burst of unaimed fire wrenched a section of the ducts from the ceiling, filling the command center with whistling air and dropping a shrieking mouse droid to the deck.

 

The droid survived for just two more seconds before a second bolt hollowed its skittering chassis and sent shrapnel and sparks flying into the ceiling. That was just long enough for it to take a blurry holo of a mounted E-Web position--and to give the waiting Rebel marines just enough intelligence to launch their assault.

 

The assault was over in thirty seconds. Those thirty seconds were filled with near-constant blaster whines and a steady thundering of grenade detonates. Slaughter just closed his eyes and tried to visualize the carnage from the gentle sound of distant thunder: E-Web spun up, opened fire--multiple concussion grenades--burst of blaster fire--screams--more grenades--another proceeding altercation of blaster fire--a spat of… flechette launcher fire? Stun fire--someone yelling at the limits of human capabilities--another burst of blaster fire--confused shouting--a final grenade detonation.

 

Then silence.

 

A few more seconds passed, then the Admiral’s comlink buzzed with a final message. “Bridge is ours. Stand by for prisoners.

 

____

 

Not very long later, the shuttles began to depart from Fondor’s service. Rather than fleeing from the system, the evacuated drydock workers were returning to work--back to their pre-existing contracts with the Imperial Remnant. Those contracts apparently had made allowances for overtime pay--and with several capital ships drifting as unpowered hulks in decaying orbits around Fondor, those contracts promised a small fortune in extra hours and hazard pay.

 

Still in the shipyard’s docking bay, Admiral Slaughter sat heavily on a crate of munitions. All around him, the Rebel Alliance was attempting to clean up after the battle: packing up unspent munitions, shoving debris out of the paths of the tug corvettes, jury-rigging repairs to shrapnel damage… packing up and returning the dead bodies. Once again, the Admiral felt destroyed, utterly fatigued. Deprived of the adrenaline rush and terror and triumph of face-to-face combat, all he had to indulge in at the end of a battle were casualty reports… and a final transmission to The Red and Black.

 

“Tal’dira--encrypted comms burst to home,” Slaughter held up a comlink to his face and frowned as his hands continued to shake. “Signal: ‘Fondor Shipyards taken. Anticipate will reach full operational capacity without delay.'

 

And with that transmission sent, the Battle of Fondor could be considered at an end.

 

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