Canopus Station
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Flight Of The Instigator

Posted on Sun Mar 17th, 2019 @ 5:45pm by Captain Benjamin Ingram Dr

Mission: S1E2: A Temple To New Gods
Location: USS Resolute
Timeline: MD3 16.30PM

"I have something for you that I think will be right up your alley, Axon."

Benjie remained seated at the conference table as the others filed out. Once it was just the Odyessy faithful remained, he made another gesture-based command to the room's holographic system and it hummed to life. The stepped onyx slabs of the temple/incinerator on the surface of Xilos flickered to life above the table.

"An impressive piece of engineering, taken on on the merits that it's still functioning after 3 three's of exposure to some of the worst environmental hazards I've had the pleasure to witness. Pressure seals still worked, some sort of computer system clearly operating the entire assembly, and with enough power to cook an away team," he said with a sigh. "It's almost a shame we're going to blow it up."

Benjie turned his attention to Axon.

"The Resolute has a pair of Mk3 Gryphon space superiority fighters on board. I've glanced at the literature on them, but you tell me: how well suited are they to operating in that sort of chemical soup? Low-level precision strike on the temple, with the largest antimatter device not rated for cracking the mantle. I'd rather not waste a valuable technological asset on what's going to amount to a PR stunt."

Axon sat back in his chair, rubbing his chin as he considered what Benjie was asking. "I see no reason the fighters can't go in for a few minutes. I'll need to review the atmosphere composition report first, just to be sure. But I'm confident it can be done."

"Good, good," Ingram said. "I've taken the liberty of calling up one of the Resolutes ready five pilots. Ensign Kendra Kyle. The computer assigned her to the Resolute from the Command Module's roster of pilots. She should be arriving momentarily. Think of her as insurance against...say, mechanical failure or faulty targeting data?"

"Should I be worried?" Axon asked. "Have you signed the death warrant already?"

"You wound me! I would have a far more subtle hand in your death than strapping you into a flying antimatter reactor." Ingram said with a chuckle. "I look at it like this. I need one temple destroyed. I need it done as a show of force to the locals. To show them that when they put their trust in the Starfleet delta it will be followed through with results. One fighter will fly at stand-off range to record the spectacle, whilst the other preforms the attack run and reduces that temple to component atoms."

Ingram raised his laced fingers and tapped his index fingers against his chin.

"Should the bomber suffer a failure, the recorder will step in to complete the mission. Unless of course, with your vast insight to all things flying and small, you have a better idea?"

"Honestly? I don't care enough about this show of force to give alternative options. This will do fine," Axon said.

"And that there, is why I'm in command of this mission. Starfleet needed someone out here with an idea of the delicate position we were going to be in. This is an important first step in informing Messier 4 of our mission and goals here, a step that should be taken with all due consideration. The Xilosian's are our first test here, and we must pass with flying colours," Benjamin said. "Now you're subordinate will be here shortly, best we at least pretend to abide the other's material existence in public huum?"

The chime rang as Kendra arrived, tugging at the collar of her flight suit, it was a new one and it was just a little off somehow. She stretched her neck to the right side and took a deep breath waiting to be allowed in.

Axon rolled his eyes.

Kendra came into the room and came to attention, "Ensign Kyle reporting as ordered, sir."

Benjie watched as Axon politely, at least from Kendra's perspective at least, sidestepped her and left the room. The Commander of Canopus Station arranged his face into a pleasant smile and gestured to a seat.

"Welcome. We've not had a chance to meet officially, but your file speaks highly of your skill. Then again, you'd not have been chosen for the Canopus Expedition without first proving yourself. Tell me," he said, steepling his fingers once more. "Are you familiar with the ground attack role?"

"Yes sir," she said. "I'm qualified both air-to-air and air-to-ground combat." She thought it was odd that the Commander of the Air Group would just excuse himself like that and she looked a little odd.

"Excellent. There is a target on the planet's surface, a Temple I'm sure you've heard rumours about it. Commander Vendrest will be acting as your support for the mission, providing oversight from a safe distance whilst you perform the attack run. Your Gryphon will be loaded with a single antimatter device of suitable power to vaporise the Temple and provide something of a show for our new Xilosian guests," Benjamin said in full lecture mode. "I hope you don't have questions, as I rarely repeat myself twice."

Kendra stood there for a second, blinking, she wasn't quite sure how to respond to the statement the CO made. "No questions, sir," she said, uneasily. It wasn't that she didn't have questions but she couldn't help but think that she was the best most expendable pilot and not just the best.

"Actually, one sir, but you didn't mention... when do I leave?" she asked, boldly.

"Now," he said, gesturing to the door she'd just stepped through. "The two Gryphon's the Resolute carriers are kept at what I believe is called 'read five'. Get down the planet's surface, and once on station comm for further instructions. Remember, this is is more for show than anything else. I'd as much prefer just leaving this place, but a degree of pagentry is required."

He then turned his attention back to the data display set into the table. He spent a moment flicking through files, before he quirked an eye brow up and looked at Kendra.

"You're still here?"


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