Pickett's Charge
Pickett's Charge
Summary: After the disastrous loss of the TCS Durban and TCS Ali, Pickett gathers a group and seeks revenge.
Date: 2657.320 (16 Nov)
Related Logs: Crossed and Tied

In Spaaaaaaaaace

Pickett loiters on the ready line next to where his Stiletto is parked in front of launch tube number eight. Waving all the others over, he begins to speak. "Right, listen up" Pickett all but yells, to be heard over the noisy environment. There's a moment's pause before he gives a surprise glance towards Val and adds a respectful "Colonel" before he continues to address the others. "Yesterday. Some Kilrathi thought that he could take out the Durban and walk away from it. I don't know about the rest of you, but I'm not inclined to let that stand. So. We're going to go out there. We're going to draw him into a fight. And we are going to kill that furry son of a bitch, skin his furry ass, and turn it into a rug for the bar. Clear?"

Koenig is standing towards the back of the room, arms crossed, looking just a bit skeptical at the plan, but, he cannot fault the man for his enthusiasm. He asks, "We got any idea where he's hangin out?"

Walking a little stiffly into the ready deck, Valentine nods as Pickett acknowledges him. His movements show that he'd been through a tough spot yesterday, having had to eject from his fighter in the carnage in which Pickett speaks of. And thus, the Wing Commander had come down for this 'stupid and dangerous' mission, having an inkling as to what it was about. As Pickett gives his rousing speech, Valentine nods, a flicker of a smile tugging his lips upwards for just an instant before it disappears. Allowing the Major to take lead - at least for the time being - the Wing Commander folds his arms across his chest and moves over to a Scimitar, apparently deciding on a change of vessel after his rather poor performance last night. He does not add any words yet, merely watching and listening as the pilots ask their questions, eyes regarding Pickett calmly; his visage grim.

Melia must be crazy, or stupid or both she swore she'd never get back into another Sword and here she is ready to do just that. She's next to Pickett's Fighter sitting on the steps up to it. She'd already been warned what he plans and can't help wonder if he's just a little pissed at losing thoes ships last night. "He's crazy." She mutters, shaking her head, but she can't help but add. "Wouldn't mind a Kitty rug Major, something to step on every time It."

Korsakov stands with the impromptu gathering on the ready line, his helmet slung under his arm. His eyes flick to Valentine for a moment before settling in on Pickett. Max's face is stone at the mention of the Durban, but he finds himself nodding slowly at Pickett's intent, at the very least. "What's the plan, Major?"

"We've got a general idea, based on the location of yesterday's engagement. The short version is, I've got a bit of a message here that's designed to bring our boy out for a fight. Trust me, it'll get him. Kilrathi society is big on responding to challenges. The only real question is going to be, what /else/ does he bring along with him. And that, well… that is where you all come in" Pickett explains. "This isn't official, this didn't come down from headquarters, and this is going to be goddamn dangerous work. So if anyone wants to hit the chicken switch on this before we hit the void, elevator's that way. I won't think any less of you for it."

Koenig shakes his head slowly, puts his helmet on, and starts walking for his Broadsword. The man may not be big on the plan, but, he was part of the group that lost the Durban so, he has a personal stake in the outcome of this mission.

Melia moves from the steps she was sat on, so the owner can use them to enter his fighter. "Good luck Major, I except to see you for drinks after." She says, going to move away after her pilot. "Lieutenant." She says with a grin to Koenig. "Keep her straight." She teases, shoving on her helmet and climbing into the turret area.

"And every other mission we've flown thus far has been a… walk in the park?" Korsakov's voice is amused as he fumbles for the English idiom, though there's a slight edge to it. "Tell me something I'd not yet figured for myself, sir. I'm in." It's a simple plan, perhaps too simple, but for the moment, Max isn't quibbling; he wants that Kilrathi bomber ace dead just as much as anyone else.

Aquilina has helmet under arm as he strides up towards the grop on its way out. For as many times as he's been yelled at not to smoke on the flight deck he still hasn't learned, cherry glowing brightly and ribbons of smoke drifting back over his shoulder. He gives a sharp bit of approving laughter at Pickett's statement of the plan. "Going to slap him in the face with the proverbial glove, are you."

Eyes flit about the group, examining each pilot in turn, and the gunners within the ranks. As none of the men or women turn and exit, a solemn nod is given. Glancing towards Pickett, Valentine chooses this moment to break his silence. "Suit up!" he calls out, turning towards his chosen fighter and grabbing his helmet from the wing. Placing it upon his head, he begins to strap it in place before climbing up onto his Scimitar and slip into the cockpit. Immediately, Grim's hands begin to play along the controls and prepare the fighter for takeoff. Closing the hatch, it locks in place, providing the air tight seal to allow the pilot to survive out in the void of space, and Valentine touches a gloved hand to his chest over the spot where his talisman touches his flesh beneath his flightsuit.

"Anyting for you Imp." Koenig says in a thick accent to Melia over the ship's intercom as he starts working on prepping the Broadsword for flight. He taxis slowly into the launch tube, and waits for the go order. With a few moments downtime he asks, "You have done tis before, yes?"

And so the Confederation fighters launch out into space, heading out along the same route they'd taken the day before. As they approach the initial marked nav point in the system, Pickett's comms unit crackles to life with the recorded sound of a human speaking in the Kilrathi language. It might even be recognizable as the major.

"Yalwah. Clanless, honorless, worthless. Sivar shits on the shrines of your ancestors from a height. Your mother was a whore, your birth an accident of your honorless father's stupidity in a moment of Arakh-inspired lust. Your sister fornicates with monkeys, and your sons will be born without claws from whatever unfortunate trollop is forced to fornicate with your putrescence. Come forth, and die like the worthless prey-animal you are."

The major flicks his comms back over to speak to the flight group for a moment. "Well" he says with a chuckle. "If that doesn't get him, I'm not sure what will…" Pickett comments with amusement despite the dangerousness of what they're up to. With that, his comms click off and the looped taunt resumes.

Nestled securely in the cockpit of his Stiletto, Korsakov also utters a short chuckle as the major's recorded insult plays over his speakers. Like Aquilina, he's far from fluent in the Kilrathi tongue, but after over seven years of fighting and studying a race, one can't help but pick up some of the language, and Korsakov has just enough command of it to enjoy the juicier bits of Pickett's message. "Careful, Archangel… you just might make the little kotyonok get angry," he says dryly over the radio, even as he continues to keep a close watch on the sensors for Kilrathi signatures.

Melia settles into her seat, strapping in as tightly as she can. "I hope these ejection seats have been checked cause I have a feeling I'm getting the Golden star today, and yeah I've done this before." She says, double checking her harness before she settles back for take off. Once in space she checks her targetting sensors and waits for Picketts little challenge. "I think he's pissed." Is all she'll comment, her fingers slowly tapping on her turret control. "Koenig, remember you avoid teh Flak not fly into it. Though some pilots have a problem remembering that…"

Falling into formation, and listening blankly to the Kilrathi words over the comm, Koenig just flies and waits to hear a response. At Melia's words he smirks a bit and then says over the intercom, "I was tinking of a new approach to knocking out kitty ships: ramming them. Ya?"

As the Terran fighters continue along their patrol path, a group of Kilrathi fighters comes forward to meet them. Two Grikath bombers, flanked by a pair of Sartha, with a pair of Jalthi on the outside of the formation. A Kilrathi's face appears on the viewscreen, a single gold piercing through his right ear. "Human filth. You dare to challenge the honor of the Kiranka? Come forward and die if you dare, apes."

"Looks like there's our cue, folks" Pickett comments to the wing, his space-black Sitletto banking away from the formation, the silver-and-gold logo of the illuminati on the tail flashing briefly in the light of the Castor system's distant star, before being eclipsed by the brilliant blue flare of the Stiletto's afterburners as Pickett races headlong for the Kilrathi formation. The automated taunt loop cuts off, replaced by simple spoken English. "Come then, Kilrathi. I am the Archangel, and I. Am. Your. Death." Yes, it's safe to say that the Major is pissed.

Melia shakes her head and give a suffering sigh. "You will not be ramming the Kilrathi, I do not want to die….." She says. with a slight edge to her voice, she's scared and trying not to show it. "Maybe next time aye Rookie?" When the Kilrathi speaks, she goes silent her eyes going to the ceiling in a silent pray.

"Just keep your pants on, ya? I'm going to launch a missile, and den turn so you get a good broadside at sometin." Koenig says over the ship's intercom to Melia, before he does just that. Accelerating, he fires off a Friend or Foe missile before turning his ship slowly to allow his gunner to fill space with charged energy.

"Torch, Hammer. I've got Archangel, you stay with Grim." Korsakov directs a slight glare at the back of Pickett's fighter as he touches off his own 'burners to keep up with the major. Bloody hotheads. As he comes up on Pickett's wing, he takes a quick look at the sensor display. "Grim, Hammer. Looks like three of them are gunning for you. Watch yourself." As he delivers the warning to Valentine, he locks his targeting scanner onto the fighter Pickett is chasing. "Hope you don't mind a little competition, Archangel, but I wouldn't mind adding another kotyonok fighter ace to my kill count…"

In the lead along with Pickett, Valentine is in a Scimitar as opposed to his usual Stiletto, getting used to the somewhat more sluggish design. A smirk tugs at the corners of his lips at Pickett's call of challenge, and the swift reply by the Kilrathi. Yet, then he's got three ships bearing down at him; one of them the intended target. Sighing, Valentine pipes up. "Archangel, looks like they mistook me for you. I guess I'll just have to dust one and make it a bit more fair." Sighting his Scimitar for the incoming Yalwah, Grim loops about, inverting his craft and coming in from a slightly elevated position. Flicking a switch to change over to heat seekers, his target is Yalwah's cockpit, and he calls out, "Let's test out the armor on this ship. Grim. Fox One."

Tormen brings his broadside along a path just after Koenig fires and turns for his gunners chance to fire. As a spot opens, he too launches a missile which follows in suit just behind the other bombers. "Lets pelt em" he radios out, following in formation as he arcs to give his gunner a chance to fire as well. The ship roars as it veers to the side.

"Hammer, Torch. Copy that, already off to get some." Alex's Stiletto trails Valentine's Scimitar, headed for one of the two bigger threats to the Scim - the bomber. Spotting Koenig going for the Sartha that's trying to blast his own Stiletto, he keeps the speed up rather than jinking too hard for this first round of blasts. "Grim, Torch. At your two, cleaning some house over here. Missiles off!"

Struck by a pair of heat-seeking missiles, Bak'ral's Jalthi practically flies apart… an ejection pod from the craft blowing clear. Kilrathi nobility, apparently, don't quite feel the need to die like commoners. Which could also explain why it is that the limping Kilrathi bomber turns and lights off its afterburners, trying to limp its way away from the fight as the other four Kilrathi move to cover its withdrawl. The challenge has been responded to, and that is apparently as far as he feels the need to press the matter.

Perhaps not so much the aggressive fool as he might play, Pickett's fighter snap-rolls to neatly fit the stiletto's profile between the widely-spaced shots of the dying Kilrathi ace. He clicks his comms, telling his exec "Nicely done, Hammer." That said, his fighter turns hard, afterburners lighting off again as he goes screaming in after the retreating Kilrathi bomber. Not about to let that one get away so easily.

Koenig turns off his acceleration, taps his afterburner, and then spins his ship back to fire at the Sartha he damaged with his missile. He considers for a second, and then says over the intercom, "Going evasive, I tink I got tere attention." He rolls his Broadsword a little; about all the evasive maneuvering he can do at the moment.

Melia seems to have some luck today as her shot lands, if not damage anything. One thing at a time she guesses. "How you doing Dash." She says making up a name for the callsignless pilot, though she soon turns her attention back to her radar and the Kitty ejecting "Oh someone get that ejection pod, the Major promised me a rug." She says, grinning widly as she sees yet another piece of Kilrathi equipment blown to pieces. "Nice work." She adds.

Juking and dodging the incoming fire, Valentine comes out without a scratch despite flying a much more sluggish craft today. Yet, the Wing Commander still did not manage to score a hit. But that doesn't stop him from circling about and slipping onto the six of Yalwah. "He's hit pretty bad. One more missile should do the trick." Then he sees Pickett heading after Yalwah and frowns, shaking his head. Leaving Archangel to finish him off, Valentine instead moves to intercept the Jalthi slipping onto Pickett's six. "Archangel, you've got one on your six, but I should be able to take care of him for you." Another missile is prepared, before he voices his intent. "Missile away." he intones, loosing his second heat seeker for the cockpit of Jalthi-1.

"Copy that, Archangel." Korsakov has a predatory glint in his eye as Bak'ral's Jalthi is shredded apart. "Churnah," he spits in the clear, sneering through his helmet at the Jalthi's ejection pod. The Kilrathi insult is heavily accented, but still understandable for a likely-incensed Bak'ral. Max doesn't go so far as to skrag Bak'ral's pod, though; the captain zooms on past, his afterburners glowing with blue flame. As if it had been planned all along, Korsakov peels away from Pickett just as Valentine moves in to cover the major. He turns in a tight loop, angling towards the nimble little Sartha no one's touched yet.

Aquilina takes a shot at the Yalwah that nearly destroys the bomber's cockpit, swinging up and around the ship's starboard side. He spots Pickett coming in for it and laughs loudly. "Softened it up for you there, Archangel. Touch that thing's fender and it'll go up like a fuckin' Pinto. Make some fireworks for us, eh?" Seeing three people now on the limping Yalweh and three on a Sartha, he turns away and switches targets, going for the bomber that's left trailing Kors.

The Kilrathi bomber pilot continues to run away from the fight, lobbing a missile back at its persuit in an effort to throw off the Stiletto and Broadsword behind. It proves a futile effort as gunfire from the Broadsword chews apart its aft shield, opening a hole for a missile to race in and obliterate the crippled bomber. Much like his counterpart in the Jalthi, Yalweh doesn't seem keen on living up to that Kilrathi ideal, instead preferring the continuation of his own existence. An escape pod blows clear of the field of debris.

"Gone." Pickett reports, oblivious to the pounding the nose of his own fighter craft has taken… to the way that black paint has been ripped away to show the silver durasteel underneath. When Pickett's course adjusts, it's not heading for the fighter that's tailing him even now. It's for the escape pod from the Kilrathi bomber.

The maneuverability of the Sartha cannot be understated, and Korsakov is reminded of that fact again as the speedy craft does a snap turn just in time to avoid taking a heat seeker up its tailpipe. He mutters a mild curse, but he stays on the Sartha's tail, moving to reacquire missle lock; even by a Sartha, the Stiletto is not about to be undone. "Hammer. Fox Two." There's missle seperation, and once again, death reaches out towards the Sartha.

Melia lets out an ear piecing hoorah as she hits one. "See not just fly boys get kills." She says, as her shot goes straight to it's target and blows it to smithereens. "Wooow!" She seems to be rather excited now, her blood pumping and her fear slowly fading into battle raged excitment. She seems a little sobered though when one fighter brake away and goes after the Yalwah's pod, she doesn't have a feeling that the Archangel is going to let that one go alive.

As the Yalwah is knocked out, Tormen veers his broadside up in a controlled loop to bring his bearings on Jalthi-1. "Just a couple more" he calls out to his gunner as the ship races towards its target, afterburners roaring to fill in the gap in space his hand firmly on the controls. As the target lines up, he squeezes the trigger before banking out of the way, giving his gunner a shot as well.

His missile striking the Jalthi, it delivers a moderate amount of damage but not enough to cripple the craft. Shaking his head, Grim is not pleased with himself. And if any others could see him, they would note such instantly. Yet, the Wing Commander is within the constraints of his cockpit away from any other, and thus hidden from those outside who might try to read his emotions. Instead, he peels off, leaving the Jalthi to the two converging on it, and instead moves to intercept the Sartha. Coming in from above the much more agile craft, Valentine makes a push to lock on the vessel, pressing the throttle to full. As the crosshairs align, the target lock is given. His thumb presses down once more upon the missile launch, and his voice - cold and calm - comes over the comm system. "Grim. Missile away."

Koenig says over the intercom, "Nice shot Corporal." He then twists his ship a little and comes around to attack one of the Jalthis. The man does not switch to missiles, but instead fires a few bursts from his mass drivers.

The Confederation craft continue to exchange fire with the few remaining Kilrathi, a missile shattering last of the Kilrathi light fighters. Heavily battered by weapons fire, the lone Jalthi's sturdy construction keeps it in the fight for the moment, though large chunks have been torn from its battered frame.

Pickett's attempt at putting an end to the Kilrathi bomber pilot? Well, it's safe to say that it fails rather badly. Escape pods make small targets, and Pickett has always been a better pilot than gunner… the line of Mass Driver slugs that reach out for the escape pod sail wide. Finally shaken from his bloodlust, such as it was, Pickett banks his craft away, turning his guns on the other bomber.

"Let's hit this bomber and head home, Corporal." Koenig says over ship's intercom, before he peels away from the heavily damaged Jalthi. He looks over his shoulder, ensures nothing is trying to sneak up on him, and then jams the afterburners on his ship to shoot off towards the last undamaged Kilrathi fightercraft.

His Stiletto bare of missles, Korsakov switches over to mass drivers as the Sartha is blown apart by a pair of Confed missles. Searching for a new target, Max settles in on the battered Jalthi, his guns opening up on the heavily armed Kilrathi fighter.

Melia looks relieved when Pickett misses his target, even that was beyond her sense of fair play. "Another time." She says quietly comming into his Radio, before she aiming her guns at one of the last two Kilrathi still alive out there. Though her mood is not quiet as hungho now, she's almost passive as she aims, and fires. "aye Dash, and get rather drunk."

As his shot hits Tormen switches to his remaining friend or foe as he loops around for a pass at the Grikath-1 wanting to just obliterate this thing once and for all, he loved big bangs. His gunners weapon blazing to add confusion to the remaining fighter in order to give the rest of the pilots a better chance.

Aquilina keeps his eyes on the Grikath that's trailing Korsakov, grumbling under his breath as missile hits the blackness of space. Joy. Seeing half the TCSF turning their guns on the bomber left over, he cuts to port to race towards Korsakov's side, and the Jalthi he's running down. "Hammer, Torch. Getting sloppy second here with you, buddy."

Melia yet again gets on target but does little damage with a curse. "Come on your bastards die already." She yells. "Come on Dash, get me closer, Rook I aint hitting em hard enough!" She yells at him getting frusrated. "I should be getting drunk by now, not stuck in this fucking piece of tin can."

If nothing else, the Kilrathi vessels are certainly proving that they can take a pounding… contuing to conduct their fighting withdrawl, a few more hits scoring on the craft, but both of them holding together for the moment. Just what that withdrawl is carrying them towards? Well, that becomes obvious a couple moments later as a Kilrathi Fralthi-class cruiser comes into view.

Pickett curses into his helmet and shakes his head a little as the Grikath manages to evade the fire from his mass drivers. "Staying on this one. Let's try and catch them before they get in under the flak. Broadswords, time to earn your pay" Pickett adds a moment later.

"Looks like no one's getting anyone's sloppy seconds just yet," Korsakov rumbles with a frown as his and Aquilina's best efforts fail to destroy the Jalthi. He touches off his afterburners, closing on the Kilrathi fighter for another shot. "Come on, you misbegotten bastard…" he mutters as he squeezes the trigger.

"Got some nice armor on that ship," Koenig comments idly as he turns slowly in the direction of the Grikath. The pilot keeps his missiles on, and then settles in to fire one more shot at the enemy. If he's noticed a new blip on his screen, he doesn't comment about it yet.

"What the fuck," Alex mutters as that Jalthi continues to zip along. He presses after it along with Max, already at full speed in the little Stiletto.

"Let's make quick work of these remaining fighters before that Fralthi comes down on us." comments Grim, his eyes narrowing as he banks hard, switching to his mass driver even as he levels off, coming in at the Grikath that remains. "Once we dispatch these two, form up in a loose formation. We don't want to give them easy targets, but we don't want to get too far from one another either in case they launch more fighters." then, Valentine's letting loose with a barrage of gunfire at the Grikath.

As tormens last friend or foe misses he clenches teeth in mild annoyance. "coming to bear" he states over his ships intercom as his gunner seems to miss as well. Pulling up on the control stick the G's are felt as the ship loops "Spartan here, looping for another pass" he radios out as the announcement from Valentine is made.

Melia mutters darkly as their beer seem to be just a taste in her mouth. "Damn cats." She says shaking her head. "You remember how to Evade right Rook?" She calls into her comms. "Cause now would be a good time to do it, we're sitting ducks here…" She pulls a face. "I hate flak!"

Aquilina squints at his comm as Pickett orders them off the cap ship and onto the escorts. He makes a slight face but changes course on a dime, eyeing the Hriss in his proverbial rearview as he opens up on one of the escorts.

"I'll note that we haven't even been touched yet." Koenig replies to Melia over the intercom. He turns his ship over towards the Frlathi and then says over radio, "Broadsword One making a torpedo run on enemy Fralthi."

Korsakov lets himself get a little too close to the Fralthi in his pursuit of the Grikath, and several of the cruiser's flak guns target him. He pulls away from the bomber and the capship, angling towards the escort fighters as ordered as he spins and weaves around the Kilrathi cruiser's fire.

"Copy One, Spartan is with you" Tormen radios to his fellow Black Cat as he pulls along side, a few comforting words go out to his gunner as they head towards cruiser. "lets hit em hard" it was a daring move, but what the hell. As the flaks begin to open up around them.

"'Swords, take care of that Fralthi. We'll cover you." Sweeping to starboard, Valentine aligns on Korsakov's port wing. "Hammer, let's paint this Hhriss." he calls over the comm, lining up Escort-1 in his sights before depressing the trigger to loose a stream of gunfire at the fighter joining the fray.

The two sets of fighters meet in a flurry of gunfire and missiles, the first craft to go a Kilrathi hhriss… shields opened up by Archangel's guns, and a missile from Torch's fighter finding the cockpit and killing the pilot within. The damage is already done, however, as the Kilrathi pilot's dying shots tear apart Grim's scimitar.

"Goddamnit, we lost Grim" Pickett grumbles at the sight of the exploding fighter. "Anyone got a pod on sensors?" he asks, bringing his fighter around to attack the last of the remaining escorts.

"Oooooooof course." Koenig says as he jukes at the last moment to avoid a flak blast, but, in doing so sends his torpedo well wide of the target. He lets out a few curses in his native tongue into his helmet, and then turns about, slamming his afterburners for a few moments, and then circling in for a second run on the Fralthi. "Keep us clear, ya." He says over the comms.

Melia sighs sufferingly. "I swear, I'm never ever going to get into one…." She stops short of yet another complaint. "Dash, are we close enough to go pick up Grim." She asks, eyes on her read out, she moves her turret around, aiming for what ever gets in the way of her neutrons. "If Spartan can't grab him, I guess we could." She reports into her comms.

Korsakov's spinning fighter evades the burst of flak from the Fralthi, but his evasive also deprives him of a hit on his target, as his mass driver slugs are sprayed harmlessly through space. He steadies his ship and begins another attack run, pausing only to roll his eyes at the news of Grim's destruction. "Perhaps the good colonel could use a lesson or two of his own," he mutters, but even so he's looking for an escape pod even as he's angling for the shot on the remaining Hhriss.

Aquilina lets off a rude sounding noise as his missile turns escort-2 into an explosion of pretty dust and metallic shreds. Not in time to keep Valentina from getting hit, though, for which he makes an annoyed-sounding grunt. "Fuck. Sorry about that, Grim." His pale eyes flicker upwards, making a brief glance for the WinCo's pod, then back down as they start circling the leftover cap ship and its escort.

Tormen keeps on course as his torpedo nails his target somewhat firmly, banking with Koenig. "Go ahead and get your hit One, we need to take that cruiser out or there will be more than just one pod to snag." the man brings his bomber back around, avoiding the flak as best he can while he lines up for another shot with his torpedo. "Firing"

Koenig fires his torpedo before he jukes, and then rolls over and dives out of the way of incoming flak. Melia ought to get a pretty good view of exploding shells outside her turret. Maybe he did that on purpose. Either way, Koenig calls over the comms, "One hit, coming around for another run. Hope this one sticks it."

Another torpedo smashes into the side of the Fralthi, tearing an ugly rent in its hull along the side… but the weight of the Fralthi's firepower begins to show as well. A burst of flak slams into the vertical control surfaces of Pickett's black stiletto, leaving the fighter swinging drunkenly for a moment, its shot flying wide of its intended target. The lone remaining Kilrathi fighter is cocked by mass driver shots from Korsakov's fighter, but shrugs off the hits, landing solid blows on Aquilina's craft in return.

"Archangel here. Busted up, but, still in one piece. Coming around on that Hhriss again, but I'm going to have to be a bit coy about it" Pickett comments, doing his best to both keep an eye on the Kilrathi in front of him and the Flak bursting all around him.

Korsakov's fighter shudders, as this time he's not so lucky. Wholly fixated on his target, the Kilrathi flak gunners have a much easier shot, and one of the Fralthi's guns strikes him amidships. However, it's going to take more than that to keep the Russian off his target.

Melia ohs at the pretty explosions outside her window. "Well at least I got a room with a view." She mutters, swinging around in her seat, don't you just loves turrets, though if she's not careful she'll make herself dizzy. "Anyone got Grim yet?" She asks, eyeing the outside for the pod and hoping it's not one of the pretty explosions.

Tormen's torpedo misses this time, a bit disappointed in himself as he loops around for another pass. "Nice hit One" the man radios out as he begins another pass at the cruiser. Going at it a little more straightforward this time. "Lets finish this and get back, first drink's on me" jetting forward, he lets loose his weapon of choice.

"Shit," Aquilina mutters as the escort gets a hit off that shakes the front of his Stiletto. "Copy that, Archangel. You still want us pounding the escort and not the big boy?"

Space fills with charged particles and explosive warheads, but little of it finds a home… fire from the Fralthi-class cruiser blotting both torpedoes fired its way from the sky, but causing little damage to the attackers. The surviving Hhriss pilot tacks another line of hits across the rear of Aquilina's fighters, even as it swings wildly to avoid the fire directed at it.

"Affirmative, Torch" Pickett replies to Aquilina's question. "Our guns won't scratch the paint on the big bitch. Best we can do is take care of this one, and hope the Broadswords learn how to aim." Nope, no implied rebuke there. Not at all. Never.

"The hell did it do that for…" Koenig growls to himself as his torpedo is blown out of the sky. He goes around in a long loop this time, and then aligns his ship with the Fralthi's bridge. He slams the throttle forward, and bears down on the capital ship that's refusing to take the hint and just die already.

Still no joy for Korsakov as his Stiletto twists and banks along with the Hhriss, but is unable to land a shot. "Time to earn your srany pay, Black Cats," he growls as the Fralthi continues to spit fire at him. Max spins around another round of flak before again pointing his nose at the Hhriss and spitting a burst of mass driver slugs.

Melia seems some what distracted as her shots are repeatedly missing their target. "Well if you guys didn't fuck up last night we wouldn't be here would we." She grows back over the comms, a low blow indeed and she'll get some serious shit for it later, right now she's not really interested in keeping her tongue sweet. She takes a steadying breath and aims for the last escort.

"Fucker," Aquilina spits at the comm as the escort's guns find his controls, jerking the stick out of his hands. He grabs for it, flashing the middle finger out his viewport. "Come /on/."

"Damn" Tormen mumbles as the 3rd torpedo flies wide of his target, maneuvering around, he finds his way back beside Koenig and travels with him in a strafe at the bridge, firing immediately in trace of koenig's own torp. Tormen's fill in gunner misses yet again as he makes a note to pick someone else next time, someone who can hit. "Torp 4 away"

The last two torpedoes from the broadswords race in towards the Kilrathi cruiser… one flying clean past, and the other slamming into the ship's bridge, blowing off a large chunk of the Kilrathi Cruiser's command tower. The Kilrathi ship spins drunkenly for a moment, battered, drifting… but still very much alive.

"Right. We're done here. All craft, break off the engagement and RTB, we've done what we came to do. Cats, if one of you would be so kind as to pick up the Colonel on your way out. If I've been tracking the torps wrong and someone still has a shot, now's the time to speak up…" Pickett says as he brings his own fighter in towards the Hhriss once more to cover the SAR attempt.

"I'm out of torps." Koenig declares over the comms. He looks over his shoulder, trying to catch the nameplate off the front of the Fralthi, and admiring the blossoming explosion that he's caused on the bridge. "I'm getting good at dis blasting kitty bridges," he says over intercoms before turning and heading in the direction of Valentine's ejector seat. "Cover me while I recover Grim," is added over radio.

"Out of torps, lets fall back." Tormen radios out as he swings his broadsword 180 degrees about and begins to slide away from the heavilly damaged, yet still deadly cruiser. Heading towards Valentines escape pod the man switches to mass drivers and aims for the last escourt while koenig goes in for the tractor.

Melia shakes her head as the Return to base is called. "Damn!" She says softly. "Noone got one fucking torp left, that thing is crippled one more shot and we'd have it." She says going to slam her fist into the controls, angrily.

Korsakov's fighter banks to follow Pickett's; evidently he wants one more shot at that blooded Hhriss. "Very good, Koenig," he says drolly over the com as his fighter streaks through space. "Now become good at blasting the rest of them." He squeezes the trigger, showering the Hhriss with slugs once more.

The departure, at least, is nowhere near as messy as the arrival. The combined weight of the patrol's firepower finally downs the last Kilrathi fighter. A bluish tractor beam lances out from Koenig's bomber, grabbing the Wing Commander's escape pod. A last volley of fire lashes out from the Fralthi at the fleeing craft, but without the direction of the ship's now-dead command staff, the fire is entirely ineffective. With little else they can do for the moment, the Confederation fighters turn for home.

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