#15 - Close in Fighter Strike

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#15 - Close in Fighter Strike

Postby vemlich » Sun Sep 14, 2014 5:12 pm

All was quiet on the bridge of the BNS Quatre Bras, command ship of the Brunswick Navy. This ship, as well as others in the fleet, had been left by the Precursors, who had mysteriously vanished approximately a hundred years ago. The fleet had been undergoing exercises with the newly constructed carriers, and it was time to open the sealed orders.
“Master Chief, go to my cabin and retrieve the sealed orders in the safe,” said Admiral Strassburg, head of the Navy. He ordinarily would not have been with the fleet, as his headquarters was at the capital city of Lüneburg, but he wanted to see the carriers in action for the first time.
“As you wish, My Lord.”
The Master Chief fetched the orders and brought them to the Admiral. “Now let’s see how the General Staff plans to use these new ships.”
The orders were to go into system orbit, conduct a fighter strike, and then go into planetary orbit and invade the planet, thus making it one of the new possessions of the Duchy of Brunswick. If there were fighters on the planet, the Combat Air Patrol (CAP) would take care of them. Fighter operations would then be conducted against another planet in the same system and a follow-up invasion would then occur there. It would be a blitzkrieg action, a lightning-style attack against the two planets that would be successful before there could be organized resistance.
“Master Chief, please inform Captain Crecy and have him and the division heads to assemble in the flag conference room in an hour.”
“As you wish, My Lord.”
The fleet captain and the heads of the carrier, invasion, and support divisions were aware of the general outlines of the plan, but not the details. As the plan was briefed, the following comments could be heard:
“Is Intel sure about enemy forces?” from the support division commander.
“My boys can handle anything in their skies!” exclaimed the carrier forces commander.
“If I can land my forces, we should be able to wrap things up in a few days”, said the invasion commander.
After more discussion, the meeting was over and soon plans were finalized. Two days later the battle started. Fighter strikes were launched at the first target planet. Before the first strike was finished, the fleet dropped into planetary orbit and started the second strike and invasion.

It was only when the fighter pilots were returning to the carriers from the first strike that the gigantic orbiting cubes were discovered. However, the invasion had already started…

“Vampires Vampires Vampires!” screamed the Quatre Bras’s sensor officer.
“Where are the torpedoes coming from?” asked Captain Crecy.
“From the planet, Sir.”
“Emergency evasive actions! Contact the rest of the fleet!” yelled Captain Crecy.
“Get Intel here on the double,” said the Admiral.
The Fleet Intelligence Officer (N2) arrived on the bridge out of breath and not fully in uniform.
“Taking a SNORP (Short Naval Officer Rest Period)?” asked the Admiral acidly.
“My Lord, all indications were that there were no forts on this planet.”
“And why do you think that?”
“All of the probes we had sent were shot down by interceptors. No forts were ever seen.”
“Did ever you think that there was a possibility that forts were present?”
“It was considered a low probability by General Staff Intelligence, My Lord; there was an even lesser probability that they had torpedoes.”
“Well isn’t that just ducky. You are dismissed.”
Meanwhile, damage reports were coming in from the fleet- five of the nine brand new carriers were gone; the invasion transports had also been hit hard. Damage control was of no avail; secondary explosions caused by internal fires caused even more damage.
When all was said and done, only three ships out of 22 were able to make it back to Brunswick after the aborted attack: the Quatre Bras and two smaller cruisers. The flower of the Brunswick Navy was gone.
Captain Crecy asked Admiral Strassburg, “Won’t you be court-martialed by the Admiralty?”
“No, it is one of the few times that I am glad to be the Duke’s brother. But I would hate to be General Staff Intelligence right about now…”

The End
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