Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Fifth part of the story leading to the Corellian Corvette Event at Gamex




The lights came down and the holoprojector cast its faint blue glow.  General Dodonna’s distinguished face set to high contrast by the three dimensional display of a fast courier ship rotating in the center of the auditorium.  His familiar voice echoed, out through the viewing room without need of electronic amplification. “Gentlemen this is the Imperial CR90 Corvette Pontiff.  She is travelling from Corellia to Scree Fron and amongst her compliment of crew and passengers are the new Imperial Governor of Scree Fron, his political attaches, advisors and aides.”

“The objective of this mission is to bring down the vessels shields using Proton Torpedoes, disable its engines and land an assault craft somewhere along her hull.”  The image switched to an interior view and deck plans for the standard CR90 corvette.

“From there, commandos will board the Pontiff, secure the governor and as much intelligence and materials as possible then promptly return to base.”

General Dadonna paused for moment as the image on the holoprojector shifted once more showing a broad area of space with the small capital ship in the center of the screen.

“Intelligence indicates that the Pontiff will be travelling with an escort of four Tie/x1 Advanced starfighters. The CR90 itself is armed with two dorsal mounted dual turbolaser turrets and four more port and starboard firing turbolasers. Turbolasers, being generally ineffective against small craft are of little concern, but its fighter escort is.”

The holoprojector image spins to display a two dimensional grid with the CR90 in the center. Four small triangles appear pointing towards the corvette and four small x’s surround the small capital ship’s image.

“The fighter assault will consist of four waves of fighter craft from the 42nd Tactical Squadron.  The first wave of fighters will be led by Beta Flight commander Zebulon Akarimas. Major?”  The General gestured towards Zeb who now took center stage in the briefing.

Zeb cleared his throat and continued.  He hated public speaking. “Beta Flight will be manning RZ-1 A-Wing interceptors armed with Concussion Missiles to take out the Pontiff’s escort fighters as quickly as possible.  Intelligence and common logic indicate that some form of escort will be dispatched to meet with the Pontiff upon her arrival.  It is our intention to draw the TIE/x1’s away from the Pontiff as quickly as possible, opening the door for our heavier ships to engage and disable the Pontiff with little to no resistance.  Beta Flights orders are to engage and draw out the starfighters and either destroy or entangle them long enough for the T-65’s and BTL Y-Wing fighters to deploy their Proton Torpedoes.”

A new set of triangles appear on the screen indicating the position of four T-65’s.  A large green arrow also appears in an area opposite the triangles indicating the possible flight path of ships moving in from Scree Fron.

“The second wave will consist of Alpha Flight aboard T-65 X-Wing fighters.  Alpha Flights orders are to engage the Corvette with their Proton Torpedoes and then provide mop up for Beta Flight or cover on the off chance that reinforcements arrive from on planet.”

“The third wave will be our hammer.  Gamma Flight lead by Maj. Mako will arrive in BTL Y-Wing bombers armed with Proton Torpedoes and ion cannons.  Their orders are to engage the Pontiff and disable her at all costs.  If all goes well, most of the opposition will be in the form of the Pontiff’s turbolaser batteries, but as we all know, never expect the best possible scenario.”

The image of an assault shuttle then appears on the screen and moves towards the corvette.

“Once the Pontiff is disabled, the assault shuttle will be signaled to enter the engagement zone and begin its run on the corvette.  What remains of the 42nd will provide cover for the shuttle until it has completed its mission.”

“Thanks to intelligence retained by Maj. Mako on Corellia, we know that Skree Fron is being used to train new pilots for the remnants of the Imperial Navy.  The Empire is spread fairly thin at this point and we expect that any support from on planet will mostly be in the form of fairly green pilots aboard standard TIE starfighters, but we know for a fact that a flight of TIE/IN interceptors may be available since members of Alpha Squadron arrived for maintenance and refit a few weeks ago.”

Zeb breathes a sigh of relief now that the briefing is almost over and sais. “Questions?”

Zane raises his hand as Zeb nods for him to continue. “Sir, what do we know about fleet disposition in that sector?  Are there Star Destroyers in the area that can support the courier ship?”

“Good question Lieutenant.”, replied Zeb. “In fact recon elements have confirmed that the Star Destroyer Invictus is en route to the system, but will arrive a full 8 standard hours after the arrival of the Pontiff.  Which means we have to make this quick and decisive folks, there is not time to tarry.  We need to be long gone after that Destroyer enters the system or we are toast.  Any more questions?”

This time Van raises his hand and says. “Sir, what is the likelihood that the escort from on planet will already be there at the jump point?”

Zeb nodded and continued, “That is a possibility Lieutenant, but I will have to make that assessment once me and the Buccaneers jump in.  We have channels open to have Alpha come in at any instant if we need them.”

“The simple fact of the matter is that the Colonel and I know how the Imperials plan.  If the TIE’s were coming in from a Star Destroyer or orbital base, it is likely that they would be there waiting, but since they are from on planet which takes more fuel and time than a pure space launch they will wait for the Pontiff to move in a little closer before they fly up to meet it.”

“Anything else?”  The room fell silent. “We launch in two hours men.  Dismissed!”

The unit started shuffling out of the room discussing matters amongst themselves.  The murmur of voices began to die down until only Zeb and Kyan remained.

Zeb put both hands on the control panel, bowed his head down low and let out a long sigh. “I would rather have a straight up fight than this kidnapping scenario.  Blow them up and run away.  That’s what we do best.”

Kyan gave him a look of surprise and understanding then nodded.  “That’s reasonable, but the intelligence this man can divulge about Imperial Fleet displacement in the Outer Rim could greatly increase our chanced to bringing this civil war to an end quickly.  If that’s not worth the risk, what is?”

“I guess we'll find out some day Colonel. I have to go prep.”  Zeb stood up straight to attention and saluted.  Kyan returned the salute and far less disciplined manner.

“Cheer up.  The worst that could happen is we all die.”, said Kyan.

Zeb will never understand how that man can make the most depressing statement sound as comforting as a mother's hug.