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 The madness of the gods.

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LeVentNoir
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PostSubject: The madness of the gods.   Fri Dec 11, 2009 4:04 am

The islands were seemingly close from this distance. Screaming over the ocean at 10,000m, Markus Frederick was enjoying the view. He was in a twin seat fighter, a version of the famed Interceptor XIIs. The stealth fighter was the main air superiority fighter of Glorious Aotearoa, but this flight was hopefully going to be peaceful.

He was the fleet admiral of the 1st Carrier Surface Battle Fleet; the Hearttakers. He was flying himself back out to his fleet after two weeks away, one in Fiji to meet his family, then the other in the Fortress Wellington. The trip to Wellington had been one of the most impressive sights he had seen.

Wellington was one, massive fortress city. Sitting around a huge harbour, it housed the Lord Fleet, the most powerful naval battlegroup on the pacific. There were but two land access routes, and the defences had made him proud to be an Aotearoan. In Wellington, Markus had visited the Lord LeVentNoir himself, and had been told that he was to provide security for the launch of the first ship in the Aotearoan Void Fleet. He was to transport the torchship that the crew would use to reach their new Void Ship.

Markus smiled as he thought of the ship. It was being built piece by piece in space, as it was too large to be built within a gravity well. The Imperatrix was a warship, to guard the smaller cargo ships that were to be built after the orbital shipyards had been vacated.



It was over 1200m long, and armed with the best weapons that could be created to work in total vacuum. An VSIMR drive was the primary mode of propulsion, but limited fuel meant that this powerful mode of acceleration could only be used intermittently. Delta V stored was around 50,000m/s, but this would need to be increased in the future.

The Interdictor XII was now descending, and lining up with what seemed to be a speck on the ocean, but was really the 400m main runway of his capital ship, the Aircraft Carrier, Raptorus. It was a massive hub of activity as it was filled almost to the bulkheads with extra space gear.

The construction of Imperatix had mainly been carried out by robots, as the orbital station was outside of the Van Allen Belts, and in the full path of the solar wind, and other high energy radiation. Equipping the station to resist the radiation would have made it impossible to carry into orbit, so it was decided that it would not be habited by humans. As a result, the crewmembers of Imperatrix were still on earth.

Commander Eta Carinae was waiting for Markus as he climbed out of the cockpit of his plane. She was the human in charge of the Imperatrix and was going to be one of the first people to leave earthspace, and travel into Solspace. She along with the two hundred other astronauts were on deck, waiting for the Admiral.

Markus walked over, and smiled. "Hello Commander Carinae. Wellington says we are able to launch you when ready. I expect you have preparations to make."
"Brilliant. We do have to start the fueling of the torchship we are using to connect with the orbital station. Please notify us when we are 4 hours sail from the launch pad at Kiritimati." Came the clipped reply of the stone faced woman.
"I will make sure you are informed." It was the only reply Markus could make without offence or loss of face. Despite the fact that Aotearoan military ranked him far above a commander, the members of the Aotearoan Space Forces tended to have an arrogance that suggested they were all far underranked.

Markus would just have to wait and watch until they and their transit rocket left.

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Last edited by LeVentNoir on Sat Dec 12, 2009 3:44 am; edited 2 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: The madness of the gods.   Sat Dec 12, 2009 2:12 am

Commander Eta Carinae was standing high in the metal skeleton around the rocket. It was a fairly standard design, 3 stage torch ship, based on liquid fuel with nitrous oxide oxidant. One of the largest 'pure' rockets made, it had a throw weight of over 200 tonnes, and was carrying the 199 other astronauts that were to be the crew onboard her ship, Imperatrix. Supplies like food and oxygen were also being carried.

She turned away from the window, looked at the setting sun one last time, and started to screw down her helmet. It was not air sealed yet, and would not be until they were in the acceleration jelly of the rocket. Through the tinted polymer face shield she saw Group Commander Edwardson running over the schedule one last time. In one hour, the rocket would be sealed, and the crew compartment flooded with acceleration jelly. They would lift off at 23:00 hours local time, 21:00 Wellington standard. 22 hours later, they would dock with the orbital shipyard, having expended delta V of around 13,500m/s. They would then transfer themselves into the orbital dockyards, a procedure with a one hour budget. Using the mechanical arms of the station, they would transfer their cargo module from their 3rd stage of the rocket to the Imperatrix, with a budget of another hour. Finally, they would set the autopilot of the 3rd stage to crash into the pacific, north of the Kiribati Duchy, and transfer into their Void Ship.

The Void Ship would depart from the dockyards and start up its VSIMR drive. It was expected to expend around 9,000m/s of its Delta V on its 6 month trip to mars, where it was to establish a communications relay, three satellites in orbit around the planet. Then, it would have to move out the martian gravity well, and return to earth orbit. Communications delay was expected to increase to over 5 minutes due to light speed limitations.

The purpose of the mission was for a full space flight of the ship, as well as testing one of the planned main resource routes. Other purposes included the training of astronauts for the cargo carriers, and research into the effects of space flight on the human body. It was expected that gravity would be able to be reproduced to a certain degree, with the crew module rotating on its axis.

Eta came back to her surroundings, and stood up from her seat at the briefing. It was time for her to make her way out to the rocket. It was daunting, climbing in through the small airlock, and moving through the crowded interior. Never had so many people been launched at once. Eta climbed into her seat, a currently horizontal bucket like fixture, and strapped herself in, as well as connecting her biosuit to the ship's life support systems. Once this was done, and the series of checks that proceeded anything onboard such an expensive and delicate project was complete, the acceleration jelly was released. A mostly liquid substance, it was slightly compressible, had high quantities of oxygen and edible polymers, making it breathable for short periods.

Eta started to feel the anxiety as the final minutes to launch counted down. Everything was running well in the green, and she forced herself to relax. There was nothing that could go wrong.

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Last edited by LeVentNoir on Sat Jan 08, 2011 7:04 am; edited 2 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: The madness of the gods.   Sun Dec 20, 2009 2:02 am

The launch site was a platform over top of a shallow lagoon, the ten meters of water underneath the main thrusters would act as a heatsink. The main observation site was high on the volcanic mountain that had created the island, although it was long extinct.

Eta Carinae was watching the numbers count down on the LCD screen infront of her. They moved from T-1 to T0 to T+1. The massive rumbling which had been going on suddenly changed tone, and the rocket began to move. Its initial velocity was small, but it rapidly accelerated, and within a two minutes they were at 65km altitude, with an absolute velocity of 3,000m/s. At this point, a massive thunk reverberated around the rocket, as the first stage separated.

The secondary engines fired, and the main acceleration stage started. Pressed down into her gel, Eta could only look up at the instrument panels, making sure that everything was in the green. She knew it all was, and relaxed, for now it would work or not.

Nearly 22 hours later, they moved into the 'close' area of the orbital dockyards. They had expended 14,000m/s Delta V to get here, and were now maneuvering the crew module to dock with the ship. It was delicate, but the airlocks finally connected, and the seals started to equalize the pressure.

As the inside pressures equalized from compressed air stored on the station, the crew started to move through the hatch and into the station. They floated though the orbital gravity, checking systems and moving cargo. They had only an hour to move onto the station. It was accomplished in 54 minutes, which gave them plenty of time to move the cargo module onto the Imperatrix. Just under two hours after docking, they were all onboard their void ship, and ready to finally leave earth.

The massive mechanical clamps disengaged, and short burst of a maneuvering rocket set the Imperatrix drifting out of the dockyards. They waited three hours until the distance between them had increased to a large enough distance that the main drive would not damage the station. Lifting the protective cover on the switch, Eta Carinae switched on her radio. "This is your Commander speaking. We will now be leaving earth behind, and moving into the rest of the universe." With that, she toggled the main drive switch, and the massive engines started to roar, and the ship took on a 2g acceleration. This would decay logarithmically, until at the halfway point they would turn the ship around and decelerate.

-------

Down on the surface, Markus Frederick looked over the radar readouts. It was only 5 minutes to launch, and there were unidentified inbounds. Looked like a large group of fighters, escorting a group of much larger returns. Low tech bombers it looked like. He decided that a group of interceptor XII's would move to block them off. The CAP he had in the air turned to the north west, where the inbounds were due from, and interestingly enough the vector with least islands between them and the edge of Aotearoan ocean. Calling to his XO, he ordered more planes to be put in the air, along with support from the nearest military airfield. Fighters he had in plenty, but Aotearoan doctrine called for a missile bus, one of the famed YF-46's to respond to any major airborne threat.

As his planes closed in on the radar returns, the screen started going spastic, evidently powerful jamming. It was being cut out rapidly as the computers adapted, and soon he could see multiple trails of what had to be missiles from the unidentified fighters. "Vampires, Vampires!" came the call from the Aotearoan planes, and soon calls of "Fox Five" meaning the long range air to air missiles carried by the fighters were being fired.

"Damn it!" came Markus' call. "Right. Dodge and weave, and hit those large returns. What ever they are, they will be packing something!" The green on black of the old school radar return was what Markus chose to watch. The tide was turning against the attackers as the Aotearoan fighters engaged in vicious dogfights, peeling away the escort of the large returns. Suddenly, out rang the call "T-160's, LACM's!" before the brave pilot was killed. The Aotearoan fighters had been well snarled up by the escort, and couldn't break to chase due to their 3:1 outnumbering.

The T-160's came on, and at the lower south east edge of the screen came new contacts. The YF-46's. Supersonic heavy bomber's when flown under the -B designator, with the -R designator they were weapons of air superiority. Screaming into the airspace at mach 3.5, the pair of planes were certain to settle the T-160's. The Aotearoan missile buses started to ripple fire their long range attacks, nearly 300km away from the incoming bombers, they were certain to wipe them out, the amount of firepower they had just unleashed. The trails arced away, and came back in again, meeting the attacking bombers. For a few seconds, the results could not be known. The static cleared, and all the large returns had disappeared. However, one bright blip was now moving towards the fleet at nearly mach 3. "Damn it! Brace..." The eyes of the crew watched the blip, as it came closer and closer to the ships. The Supercruisers had powered up their defence systems, to try and shoot down the missile as it came past.

It was within 20km, and about to cross the horizon at mach 5, when as it came into LOS range, it rocketed up to mach 10, an unknown final approach engine having activated. All weapons went to automatic as BattleNet deemed this a "Must Kill" jinking and swerving, the missile avoided slug fire, and the impacts of the lasers were having no effect on such a high speed target. As it flew right over one of the outer ring Interdictor, it exploded. The blast wave shook Markus' ship, a 100,000 ton nuclear carrier even 15km away. The roaring fireball start to rise over the fleet, and all knew only one weapon could do that. Nuclear cruise missile. Markus was desperately trying to make sense of this, when he looked out the window and saw the rocket transferring the crew of Imperatrix to orbit start to move away from the launch pad.

A cold fury overtook him.

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Last edited by LeVentNoir on Sat Jan 08, 2011 7:06 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: The madness of the gods.   Fri Jan 15, 2010 8:39 am

The rising fire ball was the first thing that everyone saw before the lead shutters slammed down over the windows. This close to the blast radiation was going to be bad, with fallout in the water. The water was contaminated. Fuck.

Markus was assessing the status of his fleet. Two interdictors were out, one vaporized, the other capsized. Shock damage to most of the ships in his fleet, and many lives lost. Highly irradiated, the fleet would have to be quarantined until they could have the entire hull scrubbed clean, and with irradiated water, they couldn't start until they had left the blast zone.

The immediate response was summons to a teleconference with Lord LeVentNoir himself, with the Captains of his fleet passively participating. They were there to hear the message, and to bear witness to the proceedings. Their input would be called for if needed.

Markus relayed the short version of the events to the his Lord, and informed him that any wounded were being transferred to the hospital ship Soothing Rest and that the dead were being treated with as much ceremony as could be spared. Their funerals at sea would be conducted later. Current fleet operation was limited with much of the electronics being at least hard shut down, if not melted or worse. At least a day would need to be taken to replace and repair approximately 80% of the electronics, with some of it being beyond sea work. Pulling into dock would be needed.

LeVentNoir looked grim, his lined face taking on more and darker shadows. "We will find out who committed this attack. We will hold them to their actions. We will extract our reply in fire and lead." His voice sounded more like the commitment of prophesy to stone than the simple words he said.
"Many corporations with free management manufacture and sell the base hardware used in the attack." Confirmed Markus. "However, once nuclear scientists arrive from Christchurch, Auckland and Waiouru, we will be able to start analysing the nuclear fallout. Our scientific laboratories onboard should be appropriate once their equipment has been installed. Once the nuclear material has been located to source we can start making preparations for mobilisation and retaliation."
LeVentNoir took a moment and then started issuing orders. They were not formal ones, but they would be in an day, when the communications could be restored fully. They were to remain on station for another 26 hours, til the Void Ship could fire its main engines. They were then to sail back to port. All care was to be given to the wounded.

Markus slauted, donned his cap, smoothed out his simple black uniform, noting the silver trim. Command colour. Like all his captains, he wore silver, and with it, the mantle of responsibly.

Of course, it was easier when they had an enemy to fight back against.

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