Canopus Station
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Shock & Awe

Posted on Mon Mar 25th, 2019 @ 9:05pm by Captain Benjamin Ingram Dr & The Narrator & Commander Garrett Ross

Mission: S1E2: A Temple To New Gods
Location: Temporary Ops Centre, Service Module (Combined Support/Engineering Mods), enroute to warp out point.
Timeline: MD3 21.00PM

Atop the large holo display dominating the control room, the image of the convoy in history was presented.

The Service Module, the lower two-thirds of a Stardock class facility, were doing little better than drifting with style. Even with the four Warp Tug's now anchored to the hull, their massive impulse drive's burning like the chemical rockets of old, overcoming the inertia of hundreds of thousands of tons of stationary metal was not done in a day. But that was alright, as it wouldn't take them more than a day to clear the gravity well of Xilos and enter warp. Inside the bubble of altered space-time, inertia would be something to deal with when they arrived in Carpathia.

Ingram looked from the display, gesturing it with one hand to vanish as he eyed the two guests joining him in the Ops Centre. Formation Leader Kle, the military commander of the Xilosian's and her civilian counterpart Prime Kisbeck were nothing if not suitably awed. Kisbeck had asked more than a few questions, many of them of purely academic interest and Benjamin was happy to provide the answers where he could. Formation Leader Kle, on the other hand, was looking forward to a more practical demonstration.

"The fighters from the Resolute should be out of comm's blackout shortly," a operations tech said.

"Transatmospheric and single stage to orbit fliers, all in one," Kle said with a nod. "Impressive."

"I assure you, what comes next will be much more interesting than a simple technological demonstration," Benjamin said, frowning as he looked around the room. Ross should be here for this. An underling was only as good as the instructions he chose to follow.

"You know, we had fission bombs as well," Kle said conversationally. "Dropped them on those Temples as well with little more effect than scuffing the paintwork."

"I don't think you'll be disappointed with our capabilities," Ross said, as he entered the room and caught what Kle had said. "I trust I haven't missed anything?"

"Not at all," Ingram said with barely a glance. "Formation Leader Kle, Prime Kisbeck might I introduce my Executive Officer Garret Ross."

The two Xilosian's made a pleasant show of greeting, with the Kle the military-minded on giving Ross a more thorough look over,

"Ready 5-Alpha to Operations," Kendra's voice sounding digital with the computer doing its best to filter out the interference.

"Operations copy's you 4 by 5, Ready 5-Alpha. Atmospheric interference is a known condition," the tech said as the main holographic display shifted to a triangular cuboid display. Each of the three faces rotated in the air, showing the nose camera footage being transmitted from the Ready 5 Alpha. The murky image of caramel coloured clouds gave way to reveal the toxic spill of green and browns that predominated the landscape of Xilos.

"We have a pair of fighters on approach. One will be at a standoff distance to perform a Blast Damage Assessment. Ready 5-Alpha will perform the actual attack run. The antimatter device being employed will be using a .5 kilogram payload. Just shy of 22 megatons of destructive force focused into a device not much larger than this display table," Ingram intoned gravely. He eyed Ross out of the corner of his eye. "Do you have any thing you'd like to add for our guests edification?"

"Not at this time," Ross said, with a slight shrug. "While some may find the numbers fascinating the show will be when it hits the target."

"But understanding what is occurring is just as important as the showmanship of the thing," Ingram was quick to point out.

TAG

"Our targeting system is a little fuzzy with this interference... I might have to adjust for it," Kendra announced, to nobody in particular.

"Copy that Ready 5-Alpha, Ready 5-Beta is painting the target for you from standoff range," the Op's tech said. On the holo-display, a flicker appeared on the caramel coloured landscape and soon burned bright with a computer-generated targeting reticule. Benjamin stepped up behind the Op's tech, and placed a finger on the mute button.

"Interference?" he asked with a smile made of thinning ice.

"Ambient radiation and dust in the air, a lot of the automated targetting systems are having trouble parsing the environment. The Mk3's are rugged though, so that should be the extent of our problems," the tech pointed out. Ingram nodded, took his finger off of the mute key and cleared his through.

"Ready 5-Alpha, this is Canopus Actual. You're cleared to commence your run," he frowned for a moment. Something was missing, something jocular and of the warrior made-ah yes. "Good hunting."

"Roger," she answered, and the fighter accelerated as she began her run. The image from the fighter showed the target on it but it too was affected, minimally, but the interference from the atmosphere.

Without effort she flew the fighter to the correct position and released the weapons, "payload released," she announced.

The fighter immediately pulled up, away, and spun to reverse course back to the Resolute. "Ready 5 Alpha to Bravo, R-T-B." She could see the reflection of the explosion and feel the shockwave in the atmosphere as she and her counterpart began to speed back to their base aboard Resolute.

On the holo display, the vehicle strewn valley that led up to the temple came into view. And then the dark obsidian stain at its head. The weapon did not impact the structure, instead, air bursting ten meters why of it so that all of its explosive force was unleashed. The gun camera from Axon's craft was whited out, replaced by a view from one of the many camera's studding the hull of the station. Even on the day side, the bright greasy white stain of the weapon's detonation pierced through the toxic shell of the atmosphere. Shock waves rippled through the clouds, revealing the scarred landscape beneath.

"By Gods smeared ashes..." Kle said under her breath.

The image from Axon's fighter returned, having fought through then shock wave himself. The clear skies afforded by the blast revealed the blasted crater that had once been a valley miles long. With no hint or trace left of the temple.

"Yes. Facts and figures alone do make for a somewhat antiseptic telling of things, but proof really does sell it, don't you think?" Ingram said, patting Kisbeck on his shoulder. "That is the power we command. It is the power you now find in your corner and has our friends in Messier 4 you fall under our aegis. And we are but the tip of the spear, the beginning of a new and powerful presence here."

"You'll pardon me if the destruction of a static target leaves me with questions, even if the means of its destruction were...very impressive," Kle said.

"Well, we're here for the long haul. If these Concordances come calling and are not keen on leaving us, or our allies alone, then you will have your demonstration." Benjie smiled. "Now, if you'll follow me I have some refreshments we might partake of so we might discuss your peoples needs more comfortably. This way."


 

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