Log:First Order/Resistance TIEs optional
With her ship repaired and freshly painted, Triz climbs in Spark 4 for the shake down flight. With all systems checked on the ground she gets clearance and takes off into the skies over NS. The purpose is to make sure that everything is working correctly, those things that can't be checked on the ground. A Simple flight, no problems and return to base. That was the briefing. Once she does the usual moves down low to hide where she took off from she noses Spark 4 upwards into the darkening sky. Easing the throttle forward, the X-Wing leaps upwards and Triz grins. <<So far so good, base. All systems good to go.>> The reply back is a go to test the ship out. Grinning she begins to fly, fly for the fun of it. She begins checking the systems, turning them one one at a time. "Looking good R2," she says and gets an affirmative beep in reply.
Meanwhile, Aurek Flight is patrolling deep in the concrete canyons that criss-cross Nar Shaddaa. Two TIE/sf superiority fighters, callsigns Aurek One and Aurek Two, buffetted by the vicious crosswinds down in the microclimates of the stormy planet, whip past a concrete tomb of an apartment block and turn sharply. Aurek Two lags a little behind the leader and over the radio, Aurek One, FZ-4792, "Fuze", calls out a cheerful "Do try and keep up." Her gunner, a younger woman with curly blonde hair, ED-1492, inevitably 'Edie', stifles a grin as she watches the tailing fighter through her viewport.
As the single X-wing continues to climb Triz turns on the scan system. Instantly both the system and the R2 unit gives a warming. "Oh crap," she mutters as she begins to level the climb out and puts the ship in a slow turn to the right trying to get a bead on the contact. "Looks like we have something, R2, try to get an ident on it. If it's just a simple flight we can make a few mock attack runs. But," She doesn't finish the sentence, instead she goes into full fighter pilot mode. S-Foils spread for the attack position, targeting computer comes up, switches are flipped "Slide in real easy behind them, piece of cake," Triz tells her self.
Aurek Two's pilot is engrossed in keeping up with the lead TIE, its flight pattern much more erratic than Fuze's; the pilot behind the bulbous mask is sweating, and the tail gunner is twisted around in her seat to check on how her pilot is doing. So neither sees the X-wing drop into position behind them, especially when a vicious crosswind rocks the big deflector shields of the TIEs. In the lead, Fuze grins behind her helmet, her touch sure and delicate on the control yoke.
Spotting the two TIE fighters, Triz drops lower, using the buildings to mask her approach she slips in behind the two. Fighting the same crosswinds she lines up on the one that seems to be having more difficulty in flying. Going for the weakest it would seem. After a few moves, a twist there and a nudge here she gets the shot she wants and pulls the trigger. The Taim & Bak laser cannons erupt in bright light as the bolts streak through the air towards the target. "Hang on, R2, things will get dicey now." She tells while working up her next move.
<TR-Pilots> Triz Dermout says, "Hound Base, this is Spark 4, in pursuit of two TIEs. Sending my location."
The gunner in the rear TIE turns back to her job and spots the X-wing. She opens her mouth to cry a warning, her pretty green eyes widening in alarm, and then the laser bolts strike. The rear cockpit disintegrates, ending her life in a brief moment of fiery pain, and then the TIE is tumbling out of control, spiralling into the side of a concrete building to explode into blazing debris showering down to the street below.
In the lead fighter, the tail gunner Edie is on the job. Her fingers squeeze the triggers and the laser cannons arc back towards the incoming X-wing. In the rear-view mirror, Fuze watches the death of her wingman, her mouth compressing into a tight line as she flings the TIE into a descending spiral.
<<Hound Base, Spark 4 in pursuit of two TIEs, sending my location. Splash one TIE>> crackles her radio. Triz was ready for the return fire but not that close, she lets out a "Oh crap!" and rolls the X-wing violently letting it loose a little altitude as she does as she tries to avoid the blasts. Bits of building explode and shower down and she can hear the pings of it on her ship. But she holds on the other TIE and again fires her lasers at it. "R2, any damage?" She grits out as she works the controls of the craft. The droid responds with a negative in reply. "Whew," Triz lets out "But there goes the new paint job."
<TR-Pilots> Triz Dermout says, "Hound base, Spark 4, splash one TIE."
The TIE pilot is good. Very good. The twin ion engines scream as she whips the craft into a vertical climb, the lightweight honeycomb structure of the TIE groaning in protest as Triz's bolts sear through the place where the TIE was moments earlier. Laser fire streams back from Edie's cannons as they climb, spiraling up and up and up towards the low cloud bank where lightning crackles from cloud to cloud like hellfire. "She's good," admits Fuze cockily, eyes dancing, "but I'm better."
"Damn, they are good," Triz mumbles as more blaster bolts zip past her after she also pitches up. "We got this, R2," she says confidently as her X-Wing claws after the elusive TIE. She is jinking back and forth to try to throw off the gunner in the tie as they head to the clouds but on one of the moves the TIE crosses the center of her targeting screen and she pulls the trigger once more firing her lasers and adding to the light show of the clouds.
As Triz zigs and Fuze zags, their laser blasts pass harmlessly by each other in the dance of death. But then Fuze zigs when she should have zagged, and a laser bolt slams into the starboard shield deflector foil, ripping off a good segment that flutters away, lost in the winds below. And then she's disappearing into the clouds where the fight can only become more deadly, visibility dropping to dangerous levels.
"Oops, that hurt something, if it's a bit here and a bit there, I'll take it," she says to the TIE that is soon disappearing into the clouds. As the two fighters scream upwards Triz keeps her movements erratic and it's a good thing as bolts from the TIE flash by her. The clouds grow ever nearer and again one of those jinks of her's causes the TIE to cross her sights and again she squeezes off another burst. "R2, give me more power to my scanners, it won't do us any good if I run into them." The little R2 unit goes to work trying to fine tune Spark 4s scanners.
<TR-Pilots> Jax Greystorm says, "Corsair Leader to Spark 4, Do not pursue into a trap."
<TR-Pilots> Triz Dermout says, "Copy that, Corsair Leader. I've got this."
Edie is concentrating hard, staring back through the murk, and looses off a volley of blasts. But then she screams, "Break right, break right..." but too slow. The X-wing's burst impacts as Fuze breaks right; if she hadn't, it would have disintegrated Edie and Fuze and the TIE, but it severs the main spar attaching the port deflector. That whips off, tumbling away back towards the pursuing Resistance ship, as the TIE goes into an uncontrollable spin. It's burning, too, and Fuze yells, "Eject! Eject!" Time was, thirty years ago, the old TIEs were deathtraps, flying coffins, their pilots with life expectancies of no more than seven months of active duty. The new TIE/sf variants have ejector seats, not to mention other refinements. As Fuze pulls the ejection lever between her legs, detcord disintegrates the pod 'roof' above them and both pilot and gunner are flung upwards and out of the doomed TIE. They fall, tumbling, their seats parting from them as a silken streamer flutters behind them....and then blossoms into a parachute apiece, the two black-suited figures swinging wildly as their fall is stabilized. Fuze yells a yell of pure animalistic frustration, her head twisting as she searches for the X-wing.
Still giving chase, the clouds close in around Triz and her X-Wing. She doesn't see the pilot and the gunner but at the last minute she does spot the deflector that comes hurtling at her. "Crap!" she yells and twists the X-Wing at the last minute as the big part flashes just inches over her head. Instinctively she looks back over her shoulder but can't see the part of the TIE but the does see the fireball as it streaks down to Nar Shaddaa far below. The violent change in direction slams Triz in her belts as the X-wing is now heading down faster than it went up. She doesn't see the two chutes as the bird screams past the pair as she keys the coms <<Hound Base, Splash 2. Returning to base>> Then with a grin <<Uh, no damage to Spark 4, by the way>>. The adrenaline surges through Triz as she does a snap roll of the ship before turning on the trajectory that will take her on a winding path back to Hound base.
It cannot be said that Fuze and Edie's descent is uneventful, dropping through the lightning storm to the concrete jungle below. Edie lands on a rooftop, fighting to cut free her parachute before it drags her over the edge; she is succesful, barely. And Fuze ends up scraping down the side of a building, looking up with wide brown eyes towards her chute lest it collapse and send her plumetting to her death in the alleys beneath; she lands heavily, rolling over onto her back as the silken 'chute buries her. She fights her way out, tearing off her bulbous insectile helmet, glaring up at the clouds above. "I'll get that X-wing," she snarls to herself, before composing her tone enough to activate her beacon and send the distress call, "Aurek One down, requesting a pickup..." She saw the markings on Spark Four. She's etching them in her memory.
<TR-Pilots> Gren Delede says, "Excellent work, Girlie. Drinks are on you, later.."
<TR-Pilots> Triz Dermout says, "Roger that, Boss. <The joy mixed with the adrenaline is clear in her voice>"