Log:Array Consortium: Rock Pounding

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Rock Pounding

Location: Jaynat, Sarkhai
Participants: Naldana, Kaelyn, David Ironside, Sion

With Kespaninan attention shifting toward the 'embattled' Complex Nine, Gray Legion command has ordered bombardment of Complex Three and Eight to further throw attention away from the true targets of the coming invasion. A joint force of ships belonging to the Consortium and the Atrax Guard will carry out the attack runs on Complex Eight, targeting anti-air defenses and supposed armor patrols, while the Legion focuses its firepower on the other complex.

The skies over Complex Five are thickly-clouded; dust and smoke choke the air over the industrial sprawl, which with its shields destroyed after two days of near-constant turbolaser bombardment has left it wide open to the predations of air assaults and the encroaching land units of the Gray Legion approaching from the west. Shielded on three sides by mountains, Complex Five is situated in a valley of black and flinty stone; framed by these great shoulders the complex is a nest of flames, and sputtering lights. Great coils of smoke wind from many of the industrial domes, intact or otherwise; blaster artillery and anti-aircraft turrets towed among the tangles of pipes and large machines stitch the air with blaster fire toward any attacker that dares come close.

Naturally, it is through the air that Consortium forces move. Carrying out raids on several complexes already, the kill-packs on board the Business have struck all over the planet; for the warship's elite pilots, the target tonight is a series of massive containment gates which, when destroyed, will allow the Grey Legion to push forward into the complex itself.

Two wings of fighters descend upon the dome from twenty miles again, dropping out of the atmosphere and approaching as low over the landscape as possible. With David in control of Bravado, the remaining defense turrets and towed cannons will need to be removed as found, requiring them to range ahead and strike before Sion's Vendettas can draw close enough to destroy the gates with concentrated torpedo and laser fire. This far away, the complex is but a nest of smoking embers. It's up to Sion, who is in charge of the force, to direct the strike.

Kae is strapped into her fighter, or maybe she's strapped on the fighter. The hyper-advanced space superiority fighter, otherwise known as the Wyvern, or in this case Bravado 2 is on David's wing, waiting orders....

Kae humms to her self, not on channel, at least this time, before calling out "Everything good Hitch?" She asks, Hitch beeps at her a few times "Ooh good everything in fully working order..." She responds, more beeps "Umm we're doing this cause it's our job?" Kae responds... More beeping "I know I know it's dangerous, that's what fighter pilots do!"

There's a pause and a dwoooo, and more beeping noises... "I'm a pilot too, not just an engineer..." More beeping "I knoooooow, if I get hurt I'll never hear the end of it from Kisa... Sooo, I just have to not get hurt!"

There's another pause and now a cheerful chirp from Hitch... "I agree!" Kae says cheerfully, then brings up a display with the ordinance loadout on board... "Oookie, weapons charged, we have a full magazine, everything is good!!!"

<< Bravado 2 here, ready to rock and roll!>>

<Ven three is with you.> Crackles over the net, the shistavanen deftly guides the ship in formation with the others. Inside the cockpit, a nico stick hangs from the side of his mouth, half burned, small trailets of smoke exhude from it. He scans out the viewports, inspecting the approach towards the target. He thinks back, trying to remember what the plan was from the brief...

<Thanks, Vee Two, Vee Three, reading you loud and clear. Vendetta Leader to all craft, there are only two routes to the target. The first is to come from any direction other than the open side of the city. Good news is, they're not likely to pick us up on the way in. Bad new is that it's full of mountain peaks and vicious crosswinds. The other routes on the open side of the city. Good news is that it's much easier flying. Bad news is that picking us up will be easy unless we stay under a certain height, and we don't know what that height is. That also means they can throw everything they have at us. Worse news, that's where our target is.>

She pauses to clear her throat. <Bravado, you're out in front. Bee Lead, need those defensive guns down as fast as you can get them that way. Take them from any direction you want, but make sure they're out of commission before we get there. You know what a targeting run for torpedoes looks like... and how easy it is to knock out a bomber flying one.>

<Vendettas, our flight path is right down the middle of the uncovered side. I'll make the first run, and try to take out any guns that are still up after Bravado's attack run. Put those torps where they'll do the most good!>

Another quick pause. <Good luck, all ships, and may the Force be with you!>

David squints, for once seeing not one set of rear engines ahead of him. When'd he find himself leading the charge? Did he sign up for this? Questions for a later date. <<We've done this before, and they haven't launched fighters since.>> he comments. <<Just keep doing what works, and lets get those Vendettas by in one piece each.>> he adds, his hand doing all the necessary pre-combat things, culminating with the wings splitting open to engage weapons systems at each of the four tips.

As Vendetta Wing falls back to allow Bravado to bring up the vanguard, the sensors of each starfighter strain to detect enemy contacts among the industrial tangle. It is no easy task, either, thanks to the density and variety of metals making up the forest of pipes and machines filling the space between the gates and the central domes. And yet, with skilled operators behind the controls, Bravado Wing is able to find their targets...but there are a great many such towed guns, missile teams, and improvised repeater-nests to clear. Thanks to David's experienced tactical mind, however, he is able to pick out a series of six areas where concentrated laser fire will knock out enough defenses to make room for the Vendettas to make their run with relatively little danger. There will be no clearing those defenses entirely, however - there are just too many of them, and they are too mobile.

This is it, the moment of truth as Naldana starts up the enigne, following behind staying in formation as his eyes drift back and forth. His snout is flares at the sight of the enemies, and then his fingers are readying it all, now his voice is softly speaking.<Let's do this right, and get this over and done with.>

Viktar takes one more long puff from his nico stick, before putting both hands on the yoke of his Ven fighter. "Here we go..." he mutters to himself, and then clicks the radio on, <Let's. DO THIS!!!> he maintains formation with the other two like craft, pushing the throttle forward to keep pace with the other two.

<At our current speed, you'll have three passes at most, Bravado,> Sion coms, watching the target-sharing system overlaid on the sensor screen, weaving slowly up and down to keep the defensive gunners and plotters guessing. <There's a nasty crossfire up ahead, with all those emplacements. Don't get caught in that. Intel says some of those are heavy weapons; they didn't get 'em all last attack. Good luck.>

She turns her attention to the Vendettas. <Vee Two, Vee Three, stay tucked in tight back there. Their sensor setup's pretty busy, with all the signals around. They might miss you two since I'm up front.>

Kae rubs at the back of her neck << Making out targets, looots of targets.... Target rich environment here!!!>> she calls out cheerfully... << I has micro torps and rapid fire lasers up and going, looots of micro torps if we needs them!>> calls out Kaelyn as she rubs at the back of her neck << LOOOTs of them!>> She adds again

Kae reaches over and flips a toggle, maneuvering fins deploy on her fighter as the rapid fire gun barrels extend and now become quite visible...

Kae's fighter waggles in the air some, the engine nozels visibly shifting some. Seems she's set the fighter into its hyper maneuverability mode.... << ready to go Bravo 1 call out targets!>> She then flips her weapon cycle rate to single fire...

<<Thanks Vendetta 1.>> David comms back at Sion. <<We'll make the most of them. Bravado Wing, I'll take the first, then Bravado 2 takes left with a Hurricane and the other pair goes to my right.>> he instructs, making ready to take down some more towers. All in a day's work. His grip tightens on the control stick and his index finger is ready to squeeze.

As Bravado Wing closes on the complex gates, a burst of tactical data under alarm from one of the Hurricanes allows them early warning before the defenders can open up on the incoming fighter wing; there are a great many relatively minor guns down there, but there are energy signatures that suggest worse should they miss their targets. Time to go.

Naldana starts to get his torpedo ready to lock as he is starting towards gthe gate, with a narrow eyes. This is going to be a tough mission, and dammit it is not his day to die. Well, maybe he is an old wolf that has done lots of dumb stuff, but he is going down swinging of course.

Kae is now whistling, yes, she's whistling as she lines up a target. The girl firewalling her throttle as she changes her angle of attack downard just slightly. The fighter's repulsors and vectored thrust allowing the vessel to maintain her current trajectory regardless of where the nose of the fighter points...

Kae takes a breath, squints, tongue sticking out of the corner of her mouth, before she squeezes the trigger. Suddenly a pair of near solid pulsing lines of laser fire rip out of the wing tips, all 4 rapid fire lasers spitting out a gigantic volume of fire, the only sound being heard, instead of individual laser fire, is a long BRRRRRRRT. The target is engulfed in the stream of explosions just as Kae stops firing and pulls up.. << That's one!>>

David focuses on a tower as one already explodes to his side, briefly illuminating the X-Wing's cockpit. <<Well done!>> he exclaims, now fully intent on matching the attack. His finger squeezes the trigger down a few times, sending several bolts of laser fire flying towards a tower. When they impact, the turrets lower and the tower goes dark. <<So.. I -think- I got one?>> he reports. <<Tower's still standing, but it's gone dark.>>

Multiple explosions about the industrial maze mark the first pass of the vanguard, with Bravado's ships destroying or otherwise hampering a number of enemy positions. New fires break out as conduits and gas lines are hit by laser fire, sending new flashes of light and color into the evening. Then, the defenders answer. Missiles and laser fire hurtle by the wheeling Bravados, denting but not breaching their defenses; too skilled or too lucky, the ships are free to raid away.

Across the boards of the incoming Vendettas, target lights wink on to let them know that the complex gates - massive, reinforced slabs of permacite and durasteel that they are - now are within firing range.

"Steady steady steady...." Naldana is waiting and then he hears something behind him and his finger hitting the fire too early, it is off into the arc almost hitting but barely missing, as he groans softly into the mic, there is no words but he is not a happy camper.

Viktar attempts to get target lock on the upcoming target. The cross hairs light up in his target scope. He presses his thumbs down on the trigger buttons. A proton torpedo fires from the underbelly of his starcraft. <SUCK ON THIS BABY!!!!> Unfortunately the torpedo goes wildly off target and just impacts against a blank spot on the mountain. He watches for a battle damage assessment and wrinkles his nose up, <Frak....> is all he can muster. He focuses in this time, again trying to line up his targeting scope with a better lock...

Kae winces a bit as one of the streams of blaster fire glances off the shielding under the fighter's cockpit. Kae seeing this what with the interior's 360 viewing capability. She frowns and jinks hard left and hard right, dodging the rest of the fire directed her way as her little fighter darts around like some kind of super-angry humming bird.

Kae then pitches up hard, the fighter turning an impossibly tight emmelman, before rolling and diving on another emplacement, still maintaining her really high speed.

Kae squints squeezes the trigger, and another loud BRRRRRRT can be heard, as another emplacement explodes in a hail of blaster fire.. << That's two!!>> Kae calls out and she peers at the downed tower. << Yeah, Bravo 1, That Tower emplacement is down, confirmed kill, confirmed kill... You have a hole all the way through its backside>>

<That's our cue, Vendettas. Vee Leader rolling in hot on primary target,> Sion coms, smiling faintly at the lock-on tone in her cockpit. She pulls the trigger!

The torps smash into the target, the resulting light show lighting up most of the face of the city on that side. The gates are still standing when she pulls up, though. <Primary target still standing. Exiting stage right... will come around for another pass.>

David nods, knowing it's not being seen he adds <<Roger that Vendetta, I'm working on those emplacements.>> And he does work on them, ascending skyward before coming down almost vertically to wipe an encampment from the face of the planet, immediately turning the X-Wing's nose back towards space to simultaneously evade, however unsuccesfully, the defensive fire from other emplacements and setting up another dive at the same time.

Descending upon the gates, Vendetta Wing is able to drop a number of torpedoes against the gates; accuracy among the storm of defensive fire is somewhat poor, however, as torpedoes slam into the industrial tangles and obliterate large swaths of unshielded matter. One canny gunner's nest, armed with a towed heavy blaster cannon, sets their piece to overcharge; a bright lance of red strikes Naldana's Vendetta, drilling straight through the shields and through even its vaunted armored hull - and the reactor. Though the system scrams, thus keeping the ship from exploding, the angry bird is dead in the air - thus does the first of the Vendetta series' line to go down plunges for the gates, ploughing into the earth but yards from the glowing, blazing remnants of the portal it had just blasted down.

The Force giveth, the Force taketh away.

There is a moment of pure panick from the older wolf, as he is going down and then out of the back the thing he heard rumbling is coming up from the damage, a panel not correctly bolted down slaming into the back of his skull. As he woobles over he is out cold as he is going down with the ship into the ground, hitting it solid.

Kae blinks, seeing David's fighter get hit <<Bravo 1. Pull out a bit, and get yer shields right, I got the other two if need be!>> She calls out, then banks first right, then left, then right again, using the maneuvers to let her see what's going around better.

Hitch squeels as one of the Vendy's go down, and Kae quickly marks its location with her sensors << One Vendy down, read this, One Vendy down, Sound off?>> She calls through coms, and banks around again, before rolling to dodge fire, and at the top of the roll, the loud BRRRRRT is heard again, a rather quick burst this time that utterly obliterates the emplacement << Read 3 down, 3 down... One left>> She calls out again.

Viktar presses the throttle forward as the flak in the air gets thick. He begins jinking left and right, feeling the concussion of the enemies guns around him. The ship's repulsorlift engines whine with the stress as he presses them as fast as they can go, doing his best to dodge, narrowly missing certain doom. <Frakkin' artillery...> He pulls the yoke back, going straight vertical, saying over the internal comms to his gunner, "Gundersen Get ready...let's make a smoking hole out of these.." he continues back, continuing back to a straight dive. "NOW!!" he says. The gunner this time lines up the cross hairs of the targeter, when the tone chimes on. The gunner pulls the trigger, sending another torpedo rocketing towards their target. He catches the strike on Naldana's Ven out of the corner of his eye and snarls in the cockpit, <NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! That's it, you hit the Shista, you get the Mista...or get a torpedo...get ready for another run Gunderson.>

Sion winces, seeing Naldana's Vendetta turn into a fire magnet... and nearly a fireball in the bargain. <Two? Two! Do you copy? Eject! Get clear! Two, are you in there?!!> She curses under her breath; the mic mercifully doesn't pick it up. If she had a mother, there'd be a lot of soap in the future for her. <Three, keep it under control! We'll avenge him better with clear heads! Rolling in again!>

This time the torpedoes streak from their tubes and land with devastating effect. Anger is apparently her friend. <Take that, mudballers! Um, Iceballers!>

David winces when his ship rocks with impact from lasers. "Could've been worse, it could've been missiles." he reasons to himself, with his droid interjecting with some beeps. "Oh, yeah. Go ahead and get those shields back online before we go back down. The droid whistles in agreement and soon after, the familiar faint blue hue washes back over the ship. Immediately after it vanishes again, David pushes the ship's nose down, unleashing unholy rains of destruction on the last of the gun emplacements, rendering it entirely useless. <<Bravado Leader here. That's the final gun emplacement, free shots for everyone.>> he comms cheerily.

Though the defenders are still in number within the industrial deeps, the Consortium's fighters are without peer - that is, when they're in the air. Though Naldana's fighter is ground into the pavement not far from the main gates, David's Bravado and Kaelyn's Wyvern have torpedoes aplenty to help finish the work. In another minute or so, the gates to Complex Five are breached, tumbling to the earth in flames and brilliant blue light, leaving the waiting forces of the Gray Legion to hurtle through the blasted gates to the interior. Almost immediately, repulsor-driven troop carriers are on the way, to be met by laser fire from defending troops atop the walls. It's going to be bloody work, the taking of Complex Five, but it is only possible now thanks to the forces of this militant smuggler's collective that the Consortium has become.

Happily enough, the siege will also allow poor Naldana and his pilot to be rescued - and later still, the mangled Vendetta Two to be salvaged from otherwise certain doom. All dogs may go to heaven, but that one still has life in him yet.