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Rim Fleet Activion

C'ran fleet assigned to exploration and first contact

0 · 282 views · located in The Onyx Galaxy

a character in “The Multiverse”, as played by Durandal

Groups

A newly risen nation discovered in the depths of the Onyx Galaxy, they seek to make a place for themselves in the Multiverse.

Description

Rim Fleet Activion



Flagship: CVM Bastion Hammer of Wrath
Commanding Officer: Fleet Sovereign Elron Titus

Ships in Fleet
4,192

Fleet Division
20 battlegroups of equal size

Fleet Loadout

3 Bedern Fortress ships

Primary ship-of-the-line: Dasius Class Battleship
Secondary ship-of-the-line: Cantarin Class Battlecruisers

Transport: Altar Class Troop Carrier

Support: Lagerung Supply Ship

So begins...

Rim Fleet Activion's Story

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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Ten minutes earlier

"Fleet Sovereign Elron, this is Commodore Huras. Distress signal, both psionic and electronic, detected on scanner. Request permission to leave formation and investigate," came over the private channel to the Fleet Sovereign. The scratchy voice on the other end belonged to one of Elron Titus's closest friends, Huras Aberg. Having served together for near five decades in Rim Fleet Activion and fought side by side in the Uprising of Orsilon, a bond existed between the two that could not be broken by any event. Frowning, lines creased Elron's leathery face, scarred and darkened by close encounters with energy weapons and sparring mistakes early in his life. Black eyes flickered as the reports streamed through the Neural link, providing him with information on all events in the fleet. A most strange incident. Escorting the explorer Sura Kintareg to a recently discovered planet, being notified of a distress signal was not something that intrigued him. Rather, it worried him. He hadn't lost a life on first contact in all the time he had been Fleet Sovereign; he intended for that fact to remain unchanged.

"Permission granted, Commodore. Detach three elements and proceed to location at flank speed. Take position at distance. Understood?" he thought back, indicating an assent.

"Yes, Sovereign. We shall be careful," replied Huras. On her ship, Light Bringer, an Orison class frigate, crewmen settled into position as the new orders distributed themselves over the psycho-neural network. Pulling away with three other vessels of the same class, the small detachment aligned themselves with the source of the signal. VIs calculated the approximate distance between the two points before inputting the information into the anti-space drives. Humming reverberated throughout the vessels as drives heated, projecting a negative mass-energy field. An onlooker would simply see the three ships disappear without any other indication of their travel.




Current time

Dropping out of anti-space, the three vessels shuddered with the collision of the different field forces. Research was still being conducted as to how that effect could be removed. While no visible effects were recorded, the puzzling fact remained that the negative fields remained after the drives were deactivated. Huras accessed the psycho-neural network, requesting access to the individual network of all crew members in the small flotilla. Perfectly coordinated, the three vessels drifted closer to the vessel from which the distress signal emanated.

Several ships of unknown design registered on the sensors, models appearing on the tactical screens as well as displaying in the minds of several personnel. Unsure of the actions which the unknown contacts would take, the three ships activated shields and weaponry, ready to react. Boosting closer, Huras broadcasted along a psychic channel, "Do not fire, we are responding to the distress signal. We request to know who you are."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Sura Kintareg Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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Sura watched as the three Orison frigates departed from the main group, heading off into the unknown to respond to a distress message of some sorts. While not particularly interesting, she still desired to know the source. It was for that reason she had become a financed explorer for the Extranus, the C'ran Republic's primary foreign policy and commerce branch. People such as her were indispensable to the government. Able to raise funds on their own, their unofficial nature, generally friendly nature, and intimate knowledge and skill with foreign environments made them the best explorers in C'ran. Hefty sums, doled out by contractors, ensured that explorers would never be in want of money. That wasn't the reason she traveled though. Most others felt like her in this respect, admiring the adventure more than the pay.

Clearance for her venture onto the planet ahead came through as she sat pensively, interrupting her thoughts. Containing no orders due to her freelance nature, it instead recommended certain actions be taken, mostly advising against inflammatory gestures and the like. She already knew that; no sense in killing oneself before all avenues of contact could be discovered. Standing from her lev-chair, she bellowed, "Alright ladies, get your acts together, weapons ready, and faces pretty! We're about to initiate first contact!"

Rushing into positions, the all-female crew operated with the efficiency that came of familiarity. They were her family. Family did not take a traditional meaning in C'ran, nor did the word exist as it did in the languages of Earth. Family meant, roughly, "those who are bonded together in blood, in hope, and in travesty, a bond from which one must not depart capriciously." Whenever a member of a family died, all grieved and then all carried on. Sura glanced over at her ships' Wall of Memory, a list of those family members that had died. There were no names yet but every new discovery could add one.

Linking with the rest of the crew, the anti-space drive of her corvette activated, propelling the ship at FTL speeds in a relative sense, dropping her near the planet. Staring out the view port, the crew gazed upon the verdant planet. Swathes of jungle covered most of the planet, broken only be rare clearings and large bodies of water. Maneuvering closer, the ship systems picked up on the signals of a space port of sorts. Locking on the source, Sura opened a channel. Clearing her throat, she spoke, "Do not fire upon us, we are simply explorers. May we inquire as to the planet at which we have arrived?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tyler Smith Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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A strange ball of light faded and flashed it's way into view, with what looked like lightning arching out form it's core. As the light grew the arching lightning became more intense, and before long, the ball expanded in a bright flash of light. After the light faded two ships with Gold markings were left where the strange ball was. "Well, seems we've arrived Prime Minister." said the Helmsmen of the Frigate. "Good," responded Darius Ko'vash, "Start the scan..." he was interrupted, but the Sensor Tech, "Sir, I'm detecting more ships in the area. Scans show their weapons are powered down. No signs of hostility." Darius headed over to the sensors to see for himself. "Well, this should be interesting." he muttered to himself, "Open a comm link, I need to speak to Commander Smith." he said stand up straight and turning on his heels.

Meanwhile, on board the Carrier, "Commander, unidentified ships are also in the area, should we activate our shields?" Commander Smith, rose for his chair, folding his left arm behind his back, "Shields up, open a Comm Link to the Prime Ministers ship tell them to fall back behind us," he stared at the ships in the area for a moment, "Open a comm to those ships." he said taking a seat once again, "Comm open," said the Comm tech, "This is Commander Smith of the Amarian Republic, We are responding to a distress signal in the area, I'm assuming you have does so as well." he said resting his chin on the back of his right hand, "For security reason, I ask to identify yourselves."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tyler Smith Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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Gro'chal sat silently at the helm of The Reaper's Vengeance. He expanded his consciousness like a fog across the asteroid field in a subtle scan. His mandibles twitched in the equivalent of a wicked smile. They were outnumbered, outgunned, and out-manned, but Gro'chal was confident in their success. The Naacani stroked the glossy black orb on the arm of his captain's seat. A blip on his consciousness drew his attention to the second group of ships that arrived.

"Psionics..." he furrowed his brow. "We will need to take them out quickly. All hands, go silent. Keep the beacon broadcasting. Let them come into our net. We will show them what it means to feel terror..."

The Reaper's Vengeance sat silent and dead - floating near the center of the drifting asteroid field. Only a brief flicker of electricity signaled any activity on the ship besides the garbled distress beacon that continued to be broadcasted.

"May- chzzzz -day! This is Medus-chzzz-earl. Trading vessel alpha-brav-chhzzzzz-tango-niner. Engine failure, life sup-chzzzz-ailing. Please send help. Don't kno-chzzzz-ong we can hold out."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tyler Smith Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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The Kadosh Strike Team Leader prepared his men. "Alright people, we have to move fast and help where we can. Kyos?"

Lt. Kyos was the Pandorian Technical Officer of the strike team. As like all Pandorians, he had Psionic abilities. Kyos also had a knack for fixing things without seeminly using any parts, so he would be able to restore life support. One of the medical ships would establish an air link to provide oxygen so they would not suffocate, but the Pandorians would be using life systems anyways. This would, among other things, prevent the spread of any diseases.

The ships still remained on high alert, but support was authorized. Zebler Ryak told the teams to be careful, and all medical officers to be ready to help whoever they saw. The dropships shields remained up, and Ryak was still concerned about this distress signal. Something just seemed off. He told their ships to continue to run scans, visual and otherwise, for any damage that could have caused this, as well as the current activity of their weapons systems. He made sure the pilot was ready to bug out if needed.

He would still go to provide help, but he couldn't help but feel like there was a lack damage to the vessel. After all, they were stationary, or at least as stationary as one could be in space. And so close to a planet's trade routes? But it was Ryak's job to anticipate worst case scenario, and all this could and likely was just him being paranoid. However, that paranoia has kept him alive for many decades.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tyler Smith Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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"Commodore Huras, a new grouping of ships entering the system. Located to our relative upwards-right. Response?"

"Leave weapons on stand-by, shield diminished to one-third power at moment. Accelerate to combat speed at five percent thrust. Prepare three Hronathi drop-ships for possible boarding action," she responded to the Electronic Operations lieutenant. Opening her mind once again to the psych-net, scan-images of the two new contacts sifting through the other information into her mind. A most interesting day this was. Not only was her battle group assigned to the escort of the explorer to the recently discovered planet- Vertiga, if translations were correct- but now she was initiating first contact with two, possibly three, factions as of yet unknown to C'ran. Reflecting inwards upon this, she found herself giddy with excitement at the prospect of being able to meet an 'alien' personally. The Avari and Grecians were too familiar to be exotic anymore and no other nations existed among the currently explored stars.

Leaning forward in her lev-chair, Huras initiated a task unit-wide vote, receiving responses back from most within the first seven seconds as information streamed itself directly to the minds of the recipients. Overwhelmingly in favor of continuing contact and dispatching the drop-ships to the distress beacon. Closing the massive link to thousands upon thousands of intellects, the echo of life in her head faded away, surge of knowledge bleeding out of her memory.

Vidovher-Seer Algotha, report on detections of signatures psychic or psionic in nature? Hurasthought over a link to the aforementioned person, head of her ship's preternatural detachment.

Dormant abilities in newest group. Psionics confirmed in original grouping, psychics as of yet unknown. Unnatural signature from distress source, cause unknown. Feedback from area possible explanation. Recommend detaching defensive psio-coven and battle sorcerer with boarding units.

I concur with that assessment, Algotha. Arrange immediately.

The Light Bringer scuttled forward under the low-power thrust engines, closing the distance between the C'ran vessels and the apparently-wounded ship cautiously. Bustle filled the small hanger of the Fast Attack Ship as two squads of Expeditionary Infantry and the psio-coven boarded their respective drop-ships, arranging their power-armored bodies inside the confines of the small vessels. Each normal soldier came equipped with a V-type melee module, weapon-mounted sonic close-quarters weapon, and shoulder-mounted plasma caster. While the V-type module was generally too large for effective use inside the generally cramped hallways of a spaceship, the added hitting power would ensure effective elimination of any threat.

Engines hummed quietly as the small transports awaited clearance to proceed with boarding operations as the Fast Attack Ship closed in on the distressed vessel, slowing to begin maneuvers through the asteroid field. Fragments of stone slid off the shields of the C'ran vessel, shunted aside. Activating reverse thrusters, the ship decelerated quickly, coming to a halt still a fair distance from the stranded starship. The other two Orison FASs moved into a covering position, ready to unleash salvos of covering fire should any hostilities begin. Once again, a psychic message, along with a radio counterpart this time, was beamed towards the Pandorian and Amarian vessels, requesting identification.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tyler Smith Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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On board the carrier, Tyler was sitting in the captains chair, his eyes locked on the vessel adrift in the asteroid field. Unknown to him, his hand was stroking the arm of the chair in the same manner as Gro'chal Deathwearer. "Raise shields to 60 percent max, and open hanger doors." he said, not even taking his eyes off the ship. "Another one of you feelings Commander?" Asked one of the ensigns on the bridge. "Yeah, you could call it that," he replied, "Contact the Prime Ministers ship, have him take a Jump ship back to the fleet, put them on stand by as well. We don't need the Prime Minister getting caught up in a fight." As the transports for the C'ran, and Pandorian Alliance approached the vessel, Tyler's feeling grew more ill by the minute.

"Well, if Tyler wants me to leave, then I guess I must," Said Darius Ko'vash, to the Helmsmen as he relied Tyler's request. "However, should anything interesting happen I will be with the fleet when it jumps." He sighed as he left the bridge heading for the transport he arrived on, "What a waste." he said after boarding the Jump ship, and departed the area.

Back aboard the Carrier, "Commander, incoming message, text only," said the comm tech, "Their requesting identification." Tyler shifted his head to the left as he replied, "Respond, 5th Amarian fleet, on an escort mission. Nothing more." He deepened his focus on the vessel, "Scan the vessel, I want to know what it's in distress." he said to his sensor tech. "Commander, scans of the vessel show minimum power out-put, it's possible their power supply is damage," said the sensor tech, "But?" said Tyler as he stayed focused on it. "But, the scans are inconclusive, too much interference from the Asteroid field." replied the sensor tech. This only made Tyler focus harder, his thoughts racing, as unclear images flashed in his head. "Why were they in an asteroid field?" he asked himself, "navigating an asteroid field isn't easy, I don't care who you are." The images in his head flashed faster causing a mild headache.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tyler Smith Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Nightgaunt Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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"Go forth, Nightgaunt." Gro'chal whispered into the Realm of Death. "Take the preliminary positions."

A stirring rippled across the spiritual plane as several entities attempted to traverse to the physical realm. Shadows churned and stretched within the cargo holds and other solitary sectors of the frigates and carrier that entered and approached the asteroid field. The shadows carried an eerie presence of calmed malice, like predators lurking in the darkness, as they slithered outward from their origins. They crept along walls, prowled the natural shadows of the ship, and stalked the ventilation systems before vanishing entirely to mundane sight. Only a frigid chill, cold as the grave, and an unexplainable sense of dread would mark their passing to those without the gift - or curse - of True Sight. Even then they strayed from the crew members as they scouted the interiors of the vessels.

Meanwhile, Gro'chal focused his consciousness on the vessels. He centered his attention on the ones with no discernible minds capable of psychic abilities. The pirate lord concentrated on the minds of a few officers and technicians and attempted to penetrate into their sub-consciousnesses like a hypodermic needle. Once passed their waking thoughts, he would subtly shuffle through their memories of the ships' layouts. Where were their communication centers? Where were the life support centers located? Hyper drive? Hangar controls?

Deathweaver immediately retracted his mind after extracting the information. He then directed his attention to the C'ran. His face-tendrils flicked in frustration at the subtle preliminary scan. A hive mind? Not too difficult to overwhelm, but frustrating to traverse while remaining undetected. The Necro Lord let out a low growl and began examining the outlying minds - the frayed edges. No defense was absolute, and Gro'chal knew the inner workings of the mind like the back of his hand. Only time would stall his indomitable will...

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tyler Smith Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Nightgaunt Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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"Attention all ships" the captain of the Frigate, Scrying Light. "This is Pandorian Alliance Space. Please state your faction and intent. This is a distress beacon here, so attempting to salvage the ship at the time is considered illegal".

The ships themselves, as any psionic would discover, had a Psi-Regulator, which would defend all aboard against Psionic attacks, with only the strongest of the psionics being able to break through. Even then, those psionic abilties would be extremely painful, or not as effective. The Psi-Regulator would allow the Pandorians the use of their own abilities.

The boarding teams were on final aproach to enter the ship. Priorities would include bridge, engine, and weapons systems personnel, in case they attempt anything and because those systems had priority to make the ship functional. The strike team had their armor and PSEs on and active, so it should go just fine.

"If you are boarding to provide aid, perhaps co-operation would be in our best interested" one of the captains sent to the other fleets assisting.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tyler Smith Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Nightgaunt Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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"Commodore Huras, electronic signal received. Translating and uploading now," announced the Electronic Operations officer once again. The message converted quickly, streaming as sound into Huras's mind. So the first grouping of ships maintained sovereignty over this area of space did they? Perhaps it would be best to not aggravate them in any manner, then. However, none needed to know what happened inside the ship should it come to battle. Yet, 'twas not that way of T'au-var.

"Beam response physically. Message: 'We are of the Meritocracy of C'ran, intent is investigate distress and determine assistance. Boarding process will involve ship damage but atmosphere contained. Any information regarding vessel?'" Configured to an electronic version, Huras's response was sent to the Pandorian ship from which the C'ran had received the message. Ending approach near the stranded ship, the Light Bringer stabilized and turned a broadside towards the target. Plates came apart on the underside of the Fast Attack Ship, ionic screen containing the ship's atmosphere. Were the power to fail, emergency auxiliary power units would activate long enough to once again clos the breach and sustain the ionic field.

In the hanger, the drop-ships began to depart.

"Exarch-1, this is Boarding Team Osveti. Requesting clearance to begin approach to target vessel."

"Osveti, team cleared for approach. Keep clear of hull. Boarding lasers may be inaccurate in asteroid field."

"Understood, Exarch-1. Teams nearing target. Please advise."

"Hold position 5km out. Current discussion with other factions present. Maintain reactionary pattern, fall back if endangered."

"Holding pattern. Strange psychic feedback reported from vessel, source unknown as is effect. No clear danger, will continue holding."

"Observation noted. Await permission to board."

As Gro'chal probed the psychic dampeners, several of the team members shifted uncomfortably. The psio-coven identified it as only strange feedback yet the persistence of the intrusion was unsettling. Psych-net connections formed and broke between the boarding team members, ensuring that it wasn't any form of equipment problem. Despite the complexity of the system, however, Gro'chal would find a way through. A strong wall made up of various reinforcing points will always be weaker at one spot, in this case one of the infantry soldiers. Having only recently transferred to the group from training, the psychic dampener remained as of yet completely tuned to her mind and as such significantly less resilient to psychic intrusion.

Information would be afforded the Deathweaver lord, enough to know of techniques and basic ship information but because of he youth, no confidential or potentially damning knowledge. Standing from their seats, the teams on each ship began their respective preparations for a boarding procedure

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tyler Smith Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Nightgaunt Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: Bryn Magus Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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Imperial Aschen Navy Responding to Distress Call
Iconoclast Class Battleship 'Vigilanti Eternas'
Commander Bryn Magus



Roughly 100,000 Kilometers away from the meeting fleets, a single contact flickered into existence. There was a brief flare of spatial energy as the ship jumped into the system; prominently displaying the markings of the Imperial Aschen Navy. The ship itself was a massive work of art, angular armor plating, massive gun emplacements, and the maneuverability of a cruiser. Though the Iconoclast was not as large nor as impressive as a Reverence; it was none the less a capable vessel befitting it's class as an Aschen warship.

"Commander." Lieutenant James spoke, turning to Magus.

"We've completed the jump, triangulating distress signal now." He reported, while Magus lowered himself into his chair, Wide-spectrum scanners making their pass through the system before them.

"Multiple vessels, unknown IFF." A Second Lieutenant reported, while Magus nodded. "Action stations..." He ordered, and the lights quickly dimmed to red, while several alarms began to blare.

"Commander, I'm detecting trace psychic energies." Lieutenant games reported, while Magus nodded. "Activate the Psionic inhibitors, bring us about."

With the Psionic inhibitors active, any attempts to psychically scan or interface with the Aschen ship or it's crew would be met with massive and painful feedback.

"Sir, the AI reports that the alien ship broadcasting the distress signal is of a similar origin and reading to a ship spotted by one of our Watchtowers a year or so back, this may be a trap, The alien vessels in the region are also converging on the alien ship broadcasting the Distress call." The Lieutenant added, while Magus made a face. "Full burn, bring shields and forward batteries online. Batteries one and two target the converging alien ships, Batteries three and four target the stranded alien ship."

Shortly after jumping in, the Aschen vessel engaged it's shields, which was signified by a milky white barrier washing over the Battleship, while four of it's gun batteries swiveled to life, coming to bear on the ships before it while it's engines kicked on, the Battleship starting towards the Reaper's Vengeance at nearly full burn.

"Get a TacOps team put together and prepare them for boarding actions; we're going to get to the bottom of this."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tyler Smith Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Nightgaunt Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: Bryn Magus Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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Tyler's head throbbed with pain until a blip on the hologram in front of him caught his attention. "Another one?" he asked as he starred at it.
"Commander, the new vessel is powering up it's main weapons, and shields!" Exclaimed the Sensor tech, as he turned around to face Tyler.
"Battle stations, seal all outer bulkheads! Turn to starboard 10 degrees!" Tyler shouted rising from his seat, grabbing his EXO helmet off the side of the chair. "Message the fleet, if they truly want a fight, we'll give them one." He placed his helmet on his head, securing the mask on his face as the visor slipped from the top of the helmet over his eyes.
"Commander, what about the other unidentified vessels?" Asked the Helmsmen, his attention locked on the C'ran and Pandorian ships.
"What about them?" Tyler responded, "They seem able to handle themselves, and should they prove otherwise, We'll step in and support them." He wasn't taking any chances any more, with the uneasy feeling he was getting from the derelict ship, now the appearance of a seemingly hostile ship, how could be afford to take any chances. "This is Commander Tyler Smith of the Amarian 5h fleet, to unidentified vessel, power down your weapons, we are here to provide support to the derelict ship. However, given your response to it's presence tells me my instinct on the ship was correct. Can we assume it is hostile?" he said over the comm on all channels, the translation system broadcasting it in all known languages. "I also request you lower you weapons and identify yourselves. The last thing we need here is the start of a pointless war."

Meanwhile back at the Fleet, "Prime Minister, we just received a message from Commander Smith." said the comm tech on board the Marauder class flagship. "He's ordering the fleet to mobilize, they might be in trouble."
Darius scratched his chin before turning around the face the Admiral. "This is your ship Admiral, you should give the order." he said, folding his left arm behind his lower back.
"This is Admiral Yo'jin to all ships, lock in Hyperspace coordinates and prepare to jump." the Admiral said as the ships turned to face the direction of the Carrier. Their shields rippled, slow at first but picked up speed rather quickly before vanishing in a flash of light.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tyler Smith Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Nightgaunt Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: Bryn Magus Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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Gro'chal pondered as the information flowed into him from his probing. The C'ranian private provided a decent foundation for the ship's layout, and the pirate lord deduced further information from her scraps and relayed it to his stowaways. Next, Gro'chal focused on the group mindscape itself. He examined the system from the inside via the soldier's subconscious and prodded a few nodes along the web. With luck, the pings would be seen as errant glitches in the new dampener caused by the supposed feedback.

"Now to turn the system against itself..."

Lord Deathweaver partitioned off a section of his mind with ease and wove a spell matrix of concealment, mimicry, subtlety, and fortitude thrown in to protect against possible backlash. He eased the partition through the soldier's mind and into the system. It would be almost entirely identical to the other nodes in the mindscape and behave like an echo or a minor glitch. If the trojan went undetected or unmolested, he would weave the same enchantment around the shades that continued to explore the C'ranian ships. Meanwhile, his own partition would bounce around the group mindscape and attempting to scry into the minds of officers or engineers for the needed information.

Gro'chal focused his attention on the Pandarians and furrowed his brow at the strong psychic defenses that protected them. Fortunately, the Naacani was most assuredly not a one-trick pirate. He lowered his hand to the sphere on his other armrest and pressed his finger against the glossy surface.

"Activate arcane instruments" he projected his will through the sphere. "Initiate with stealth subroutine."

A new and mystical energy flickered to life inside the ship, though a system of passive enchantments and runes muffled and camouflaged the energy to the point of it being hardly different from the residual radiation of space.

Gro'chal focused on the air in front of him and poured a bit of will and power into a short incantation. A bubble materialized in front of him, depicting the void of space dotted with starlight like a spherical canvas. A twitch of his left index finger caused the bubble to ripple into a view of one of the Pandorian vessels. With that he began several sweeps of the ship in search of the centers for their communications, FTL drive, life support, shields, targeting systems, and weapons.

A pang suddenly shot through Gro'chal's mind. He turned the scrying orb's focus to the origin of a massive disturbance to reveal the arrival of the Aschen battleship. Gro'chal released an audible growl and clenched his fist.

"I did not realize our signal traveled far enough to reach them..." he fumed. "This makes the situation far more complicated... Their inhibitors and planck field will remove several strategies and dwindle our options. I could manipulate the other ships into covering our escape and scavenge the leftovers... Let us see how it turns out."

With that, Gro'chal began to carefully and stealthily scry the Aschen iconoclast battleship. He worked layer by layer, figuratively tip-toeing his way after ensuring no defenses or alarms to magical probing barred his path.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tyler Smith Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Nightgaunt Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: Bryn Magus Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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The frigates, like clockwork, began reporting on the Aschen presence back to the main fleet. The main fleet reporting something back on a channel so secure, Captain Ellen Fields was not even sure she had authorization to use this channel under normal means, though the captain of the fleet, Ramora Bergi, had sent it. Though, given the message, she understood. Its good to know we have that in waiting, though lets hope it wont come to that.

"We read you Amarian Fleet. Please be advised, we find both the motion and position of this ship suspcious as well. We will now attempt to penetrate it with lifeform scanners to get a detailed state of the crew. Do you have any such instruments that can do the same?"

She broadcasted to the Aschen ships. "Attention, release your weapons locks immediately. There is no hostilities between us, and I have no intention of being the one to start it".

One of her bridge officers then came to her with something. They were not entirely sure yet, but they believe that psionic activity has been detected. orginating from the unknown ship, it seemed to test them, before going after the C'ran vessel.

"Attention unknown vessel with the distress beacon, we have detected unexplained psionic acitivity from your ship! Please explain at once!" she noted, and the boarding teams remained on standby mode, in position to board on a moments notice.

The ships also had its shields at max, and the rest of the fleets were on standby to jump right into the fray at a moments notice should trouble occur, but the Pandorians would do what they could to not enter conflict in the first place.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tyler Smith Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Nightgaunt Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: Bryn Magus Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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(If someone could please tag the characters I would be extremely grateful. Tagging doesn't seem to work on mobile devices and I don't have computer access until much later.)

Gro'chal's psychic ghost wriggles through the psychic defenced of the private, accessing he memory before heading on into the network between the different personnel of the detachment. Breaching through the unattuned psychic dampener had been a simple task as it was not yet perfect; the network responded actively. Each network took a life of its own, the collective sum intelligence of all people connected to it. In this way, AI-like constructs could be created at will with enough people, allowing machine efficiency for living beings. And as its own organism, the network had its defenses to rid itself of diseases. Having awareness of all, it already knew of the weakness presented by the private's mind. When Gro'chal's ghost entered, the anomaly encountered the presence of the network intelligence. Alerting several specially selected psychics to the presence, it continues to contain the ghost as the purgation unit began its inspection.

As the emergence of the Aschen ship registered on the scanners, Huras immediately requested and received control of the entire detachment, the lives of thousands now in here hands and mind. Synchronized, the three Orison's rotated to face the Iconoclast. Dual shield systems activated, encasing the three vessels in two layers of defenses, marked only by a slight ripple of electricity over the hull of each vessel. Engines throttled to full, yet the ship moved forward almost imperceptibly as all thrust dissipated into the time dilation field which had activated alongside the other combat systems. Weapons batteries revealed themselves, hovering out of their containment compartments. The weapons remained on-standby, unwilling to provoke conflict. Detecting transmissions from the Pandorians and Amarians. Activating a radio channel reserves for universal information, Huras said, "We request you deactivate your weapons and explain the hostile approach. Please comply."

The three drop ships boosted away from The Reaper's Vengeance, taking cover behind an asteroid which afforded a clear route to the Orison's should escape be required. Onboard, the infantry remained seated and unphased, even as a shield came into place over the vehicles. The psio-coven, wary of all contacts from the recent developments, began utilizing active protection fields to shield the group as the mage wove defensive spells, covering the drop ships in extra layers of protection

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tyler Smith Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Nightgaunt Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: Bryn Magus Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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The Iconoclast continued on it's intercept course towards the alien vessel, while two of it's six massive MAC batteries continued to bear aim at the other alien fleets. And two more were locked cleanly on the Reaper's Vengeance

The Iconoclast's six Main Batteries consisted of what was designated to the Aschen as a SuperMAC, a weapon that fired a solid 2,000 ton ferric-tungsten slug at 12,000 kilometers per second. The weapon was as devastating as it was effective, capable of punching through shields and armor alike, while retaining enough kinetic energy to punch through several ships beyond.

These were but a fraction of the Iconoclast's combat capabilities, and the only ones that remained active at this time.

Magus pondered his next move, checking his display a moment before he turned to his Lieutenant.

"Open a channel to reply, and then signal the nearest fleet. If that ship's the same one as the one pulling this same crap near that watchtower, I want to seize that ship for further investigation." Magus ordered.

A moment later, Lieutenant Finn turned around at his station, nodding.

"We have a reply from Admiral Whitcomb, the Second Fleet of Homogeneous Clarity will respond, their ETA is two millicentons. The Intrepid class scout ship that detected the signal originally is re-attaching to the Fleet of Tranquil Composure, they are also en-route to assist, and will arrive in.. Five Millicentons."

"Excellent." Magus said, gesturing to the fleets before them.

"Let'a give our new friends a warm introduction."

With the communication channels open, Bryn Magus cleared his throat, and spoke into the comm, sending a stern and clear message to the Pandorians, the Aramarians and the C'ran.

"Attention unidentified Xeno vessels.. This is Commander Magus of the Imperial Aschen Battleship Vigilanti Eternas. The Alien vessel you're approaching is to be seized under the Authority of the United Aschen Empire in relation to an investigation concerning a security breach in our space several Sectars back. If you interfere with any attempt to secure or destroy this alien vessel it will be construed as an act of aggression against the United Aschen Empire, and will be dealt with accordingly. Our weapons will remain active and locked until we ascertain the nature of your people, and have secured the alien vessel. We will not fire but if you attack us we will defend ourselves, and it will be seen as an act of war." Magus replied, before he turned to his XO.

"All weapon batteries online, bring us full burn to that ship. Once we're within range, Activate the Planck packs and launch Assault Condors for Boarding actions."

The XO Offered a prompt nod while a Lieutenant turned towards Magus.

"Sir, I'm detecting some minute magical anomalies attempting to enter our vessel, I would have missed them but they were registering on our shields."

Magus nodded, and made a face. "Activate the Antimana field."

The Lieutenant nodded, and as Gro'chal may have had some luck probing the Aschen ship at first, he would be met with static a few moments later as it's Anti-magic field activated, preventing any sort of magic from penetrating it's shields, or being used onboard. It would be only a matter of minutes before the Iconoclast was close enough that the Reaper's Vengeance would be encased in a Planck field as well.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tyler Smith Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Nightgaunt Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: Bryn Magus Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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"Commander Magus, This is Commander Smith of the Amarian Republic 5th escort fleet." Tyler said in response to Magus, "Be advised the rest of my fleet will be arriving shortly. We don't want a conflict, and as far as I'm concerned, you can have that vessel." he motioned to his comm tech to in the feed. Tyler sighed as she sat down on the steps leading up to the Captains chair, removing his helmet, "Damn this headache," he muttered to himself, rubbing his temple. Moments later 36 cruiser, four warships, and another Carrier, emerged form hyperspace. "Well, there's the fleet," Tyler said as the Marauder emerged. He motioned to the Comm tech to open a channel, "Prime Minister, the situation is under control. We'll be resuming out course home now." He said once the comm link was open.
"Roger that Commander," Darius replied from on board the Marauder class. "What about the derelict vessel?"
"The bigger ship on the other side of the Asteroid field," Tyler said as he looked at the Iconoclast, "They say it's a wanted Vessel, so it stays put." No more then a second after he said that his head started throbbing as images, visions flooded his mind. Soon, Tyler collapsed to the floor, leaving the Captain now in charge.
With Tyler now unconscious the fleet spooled up their hyper drives and just as fast as they arrive, they left in a flash of light.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tyler Smith Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: Bryn Magus Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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Only organic material and traces of psionic energy - like echoes or faded imprints - registered aboard The Reaper's Vengeance when penetrated with the scanners. There were no heartbeats, no hoarse breathing of suffocating spacers, no reply to the hailing, nor the warmth of fresh bodies.

It was simply cold, silent, and dead.

Gro'chal's trojan continued to attempt evasion from the C'ranian "antibodies" of the network. He attempted to override the signature of a maintenance worker in a final effort. The trojan mimicked the worker's psychic imprint before melding with his consciousness, thrusting him out of the network, and assuming his place. The pirate lord hoped that the system's security would go after the worker's mind - which would be spiraling into the empty void of the mindscape.

The pirate lord's attention was suddenly grabbed by the intercepted Aschen message. His glowing blue eyes widened in alarm. He cursed in a blurt of audible clicks and vulgar psychic images.

"Abort!" he growled. "Abort! All agents back to the ships. Nightgaunt, return to the Vengeance. We need to be out of here before that planck field comes up!"

"ALL VESSELS!" Gro'chal slammed his hand on the psionic interface. "FLEE!"

At first, the asteroid field was just as cold and desolate as it was when the Pandorians arrived. Faint, barely perceptible psionic signatures bounced between the drifting mountains and continents like echoes. Then a tidal wave of psychic energy erupted from the supposedly derelict ship. While the previous signatures were barely embers, this explosion was a raging inferno. Engines thundered and shields materialized as the ship rocketed passed the Pandorian vessels.

Then all of Hell awoke.

Similar, yet significantly smaller, bonfires of psionic activity ignited across the asteroid field. Dozens of heat signatures flickered to life from within several of the asteroids. Less than a few breaths later, the armored hides of several modified corvettes emerged from the crags and canyons of the floating rocks like trapdoor spiders. Unlike most corvettes, these were more heavily armored and had several more cannons of unknown alien make. Layers of dust and rocks flew from their hulls as they broke into a mad gallop to the opposite end of field - furthest from the Aschen ships.

Meanwhile, aboard The Reaper's Vengeance, the psychic energies continued to build to terrifying levels. The Naacani were natural psychics. Psionics were as much part of their biology as a beating heart. Gro'chal, through decades of vigorous training, had surpassed nearly all of his kin. And yet he had found another way to empower himself.

The Necro Lord's gaze shifted shifted to the skeletons that filled the command bridge. The skeletal crewmen stirred with but a thought. A dim azure glow flickered in their empty eye sockets. Creaking bones shattered the dead silence of the bridge while the glows swiftly ignited into tongues of blue flame. Gro'chal felt each of their presences as an extension of himself - a limb of his indominable will. He reached out to the other Deathweaver ships that zoomed through the asteroid field at a breakneck pace and found similar clusters of tethered minds. Deathweaver harnessed their essences - the raw sorrow and suffering that plagued their restless souls - and channeled it into himself. After so long and so many times, the emotional and mental agony of so many broken lives was no longer overwhelming. Instead, he embraced the cold and unforgiving pain, and channeled it into dark hatred and fiery rage against the Aschen and their meddling - and his own failure at securing his goals. Then, empowering his will and focusing his mind, he channeled the emotions and his power through the psionic amplifiers of the Naacani vessel.

As one - the Deathweavers uttered a soul-rending cry that would leave every psionic quaking in their boots. The inferno bloated into a maelstrom that surrounded The Reaper's Vengeance like a shell. Then it coalesced into a concussive wave of kinetic energy that sent several of the asteroids flying between the fleeing pirates and the Aschen ships.

Gro'chal quaked in his captain's seat. Black blood dripped from one of his nostrils while his cranium pulsed with a vibrant blue light. He directed a single thought into the forgotten trojan within the C'ranian group mindscape, and routed a copy of the same message to the distant Commander Tyler Smith and the much closer Captain Ellen Fields.

"Do not trust the Space Tyrants, for they evoke the fury of the Damned and the vengeance of the Dead."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Sura Kintareg Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion Character Portrait: Shalna "Quietbird" Dakova

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THe cannons did not fire, though they kept weapons lock. "This is the planet of Vertiga, owned and maintained by the Clans of Vertiga. Any attempt to land in an undesignated landing zone will be seen as a hostile, illegal, and stupid action, and mercy via quick destruction will be authorized".

THe comm specialist ended it with "Have a nice day. If you wish to land, first time visitors are recommended to land at the designated neutral zone at the Primary Stardock".

AN automated message was then sent to Shalna Dakova, one of the current Commissaries elected to be allowed to speak for the Vertigan people as a whole. Should they choose to land, she would greet them.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: Bryn Magus Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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Captain Ellen Fields was not particularly happy about what was going on. First, a ship oddly located perfectly still and seemingly undamaged with no life signs reported near their shipping lanes, and now several Fleets were at their door, including the Aschen. They waited and listened as the other ship also requested the Aschen to end weapons lock on their ships, and then Aschen soon after replied with their reasons and intentions of being here.

They started picking up various psionic activity as well. As the highest ranking officer in the area at the moment, she needed to decide what to do based on protocol. After accessing the situation, and all messages recieved, as well as all actions currently taken, she knew what to do.

First off, all the boarding teams had already been recalled into their original ships. Then, she had the fleet enter a defensive maneuver as they replied. "Very well Commander Magus, as the ship had initiated no hostile action towards us, or known to have committed any crime either here or anywhere else in Pandorian Alliance Space, and as its already shown to be not only suspicious but of likely illegal intent, you are free to do what you wish with it, so long as neither you nor it engages any hostility or crime in Alliance space before its aprehension. If it does, then as we have no hard evidence of your claims, we would have to take it custody and submit it to our justice system until such a time that you provide evidence of its crimes against your people and that it is greater then the crimes committed against our own. To make this easier, we shall be keeping our distance. However, be advised in the future that this is Pandorian Alliance Space, and that any foreign power must otherwise file a form to search for criminals in our space, and with limited numbers allowed in one sector at a time as well as having evidence to prove the search is valid and just".

"Is that allowed? This is our territory, they cant just come in like this to search for a criminal without notification and forms" her Navigator mentioned.

"They were not currently aware of our laws before most likely. I will log it in that they now have for future reference, so this will be a one time thing, and I don't plan on starting an incident with these Aschen. Do you?"

"No ma'am. I understand" he mentioned. She then alerted the rest of the ships with them that they were pulling back to stay out of the way, and so the pirates did not try to attack their ships and force a diplomatic incident during First Contact. That said, Captain Fields did not entirely trust the Aschen either, and kept a secure encrypted subwarp comm channel open with the fleets that were holding back out of sensor range.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: Bryn Magus Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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The psychic field and magical elements of the the three Orison's quivered violently, sensing the disturbance emanating from the Aschen ship. Unsettled, the crew of each ship shifted around nervously, ready to assume a combat maneuver or engage in flight from the region should anything go awry. Having encountered few aliens outside of simple creatures, the C'ran personnel were unsure of how to respond to the anti-psychic and anti-magic defenses that had suddenly sprung up around the Iconoclast. Pulses of cerulean and verdant light traveled lazily across the outer hull of the ships, lighting them up against the background of space. Stealth no longer remained an option if the sensors on the ships in the area were of any significant strength.

"Commodore Huras, new vessel is approaching rapdily. Unnatural forces detected, seems similar to the anti-space drives but readings are not clear," prompted one of the bridge operators, his thought flashing into her mind over the network. Shifting the information aside, she focused her mental abilities on the anomaly in the system. Watching attentively, her suspicions rose as a connection shuddered before being reestablished. The psych-net reported that the signature was not anchored to any organic but that there was one near the location with which a connection was being established. An intrusion. Authorizing a regenesis purge, the full psychic might of the local C'ran task force swept through the psych-network, boiling away unnatural and/or unauthorized points of energy.

Opening her eyes from the three second encounter, a surge of psychic force plowed through the vacuum, momentarily distracting Huras. A voice, metallic and inorganic in nature, rang through her head and that of every other C'rani.

Do not trust the Space Tyrants, for they evoke the fury of the Damned and the vengeance of the Dead.

Alarms blared across the C'ran ships, a rare event reserved for only the most grievous emergencies. Staccato shrieks reverberated through the hallways as all personnel immediately ceded all control to Huras, unifying the fleet. Viewing the situation outside, surprise struck her as dozens of silhouettes emerged from behind the asteroids, flaring to life on the Light Bringer's registrars. The Hronathi drop ships engaged afterburners, shorting out shields and weapons as they raced back towards the Orisons.

The Orisons themselves unmasked their weapon systems, compartments all over the semi-organic hull springing open to reveal small batteries designed for quick strikes. Engaging a holding beam, the drop ships sped forward faster than before, decelerating moments before collision and maneuvering into the docking areas. Having done so, the C'ran vessels immediately backed away from the Deathweaver ships, spinning up anti-space drives. Rotating and pouring all reserve energy into shields and engines, space folded in front of the C'ran vessels as they shot away in FTL, leaving naught but their memory for all in the area.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Gro'chal Deathweaver Character Portrait: Pandorian Alliance Desrada Fleet Character Portrait: Elisha Whitcomb Character Portrait: Darius Ko'Vash Character Portrait: Bryn Magus Character Portrait: Aschen Second Fleet of Homogenous Clarity Character Portrait: The Reaper's Vengeance Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion

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The Aschen Iconoclast Battleship is the latest in the Empire's terrifying arsenal.


Magus watched in silence as the proverbial Hornet's nest was stirred by the announcement of the Aschen's Intent to seize the ship. His fairly straight face turned into a scowl as the Pirates began to flee, ships coming to life across the field to make their escape.

"I don't have time for your Bureaucracy, do not interfere or it will be construed as an act of war." Magus quipped back to the Pandorians. It was clear he wasn't interested in Diplomacy at this time, only catching the Pirate vessel.

As the Pirate vessels began to come out one by one from the asteroids, Magus made a face as the DRADIS lit up with multiple contacts, alarms began to blare as he stood up and pointed forward.

The Aschen Iconoclast continued to move forwards at a breakneck speed after The Reaper's Vengeance, and given the size of the Imperial Military vessel, it would be suprising to find out that the Aschen ship was gaining on the Pirate vessels, and it was doing so rapidly. With it's gargantuan 4,512Gs Acceleration, and it's five massive Olympus type ion engines, the Iconoclast was more than capable of rapidly gaining on it's target.

Magus made a face, at this rate they wouldn't be in Planck range soon enough to prevent the pirates from escaping, he had to do something drastic.

"Lieutenant, fire forward Phaser arrays at the alien vessel, try to disable it, but if we destroy it then so be it." Magus ordered, while the Lieutenant nodded.

"Thunderbolts are primed and ready." The Lieutenant reported.

"Prime the Planck warheads, prep a second salvo with a Psionic Disruptor warhead." Magus ordered, and the Lieutenant nodded.

"Firing Phasers." The Lieutenant reported, and the Aschen ship loosed it's first bank of weapons, which was displayed as a brilliant orange-red beam that seared across the blackness of space towards Gro'chal's ship. There was one, and then two and three, steady beams fired in rapid succession, and fired with astounding accuracy towards the engines of the fleeing ship, while the Iconoclast largely ignored the Corvettes, and let it's point defense weaponry and shields take asteroid impacts.

Each asteroid impacted with a brilliant flash of white on the Iconoclast's shields, and was tossed aside easily with each impact. And Immediately following the Phaser strike, massive armored panels retracted from it's Thunderbolt missile bays, and two missiles were loosed, the first one containing a Planck warhead, which would detonate and temporarily jam FTL travel in the immediate area, and the second contained a powerful psionic disruption warhead capable of debilitating even the most practiced psionics.

The missiles were free from their bays, only to vanish in a vortex of multi-colored light. They would emerge to detonate almost instantly and within close range to the Reaper's Vengeance.

----

While the Vigilanti Eternas was pursuing the alien vessel, a single massive contact would jump in behind the Pandorian fleet, seemingly in an attempt to head off the Reaper's Vengeance.

The vessel was the Reverence II 'Harbinger of Piety' and it was the flagship of the Aschen Empire's Second Fleet of Homogenous Clarity.

Admiral Whitcomb made a face as the events unfolded before her, and she turned to the Shipboard AI. "Activate Planck Packs." She ordered, and the AI promptly nodded.

The Reverence's Planck Packs began to spool up, and Gro'chal's window of escape started to rapidly narrow.

With two Imperial warships in play, and hundreds more likely on the way, the jaws of the Aschen Empire were rapidly shutting on the Naacani pirate.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Sura Kintareg Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion Character Portrait: Shalna "Quietbird" Dakova

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Advancing slowly towards the Vertigan stardock, Sura considered the options. Not very many at the moment. Either landing at the designated zones, landing on the planet- which from the description didn't sound particularly promising- or returning to the Fleet without any information about the planet. Frowning briefly, she hooked up to the ship and began boosting it slightly faster towards the port. Thinking, she announced, "Continuing approach vector, will be landing at spacedock."

The crew prepared themselves for landing, conducting the rituals which had grown to accompany every descent to untouched planets. Gathering in the mess hall, each placed a personal possession of theirs on the floor in front of their foot before kneeling in front of the item. Bowing their heads, each placed a pair of finger to their lips simultaneously before pressing the fingers to the floor.

Upon doing so, they formed a non-traditional organo-psychic link. Establishing a normal connection, each crew member immersed themselves into the system. Whereas the link was usually utilized as a device of management and communication, this link became one of bonding for the personnel of The Shadow's Light. Minds melded together and all became one for an instant, a moment of absolute truth in which all reestablished their loyalty to each other, sisters in all senses except for blood.

Rising from her position at the head of the congregation, Sura smiled as all stood and mingled momentarily before returning to their posts. Three, not including Sura, donned their EVA suits for landing. Having already conducted passive scans of the composition of the atmosphere, it was deemed safe to breath without any form of protection. Always one for caution, however, Sura insisted on the suits. Similar to the ones utilized by the military forces of C'ran, the exploratory suits traded many of the combat features for increased environmental hazard survivability and upgraded sensor suites, among several other lesser changes.

Thrumming as the ship decelerated before touching the ground of the stardock, Sura sealed off the airlock before confirming the opening of the outer door. Stepping through, she shaded her eyes and took in all there was to see.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Sura Kintareg Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion Character Portrait: Shalna "Quietbird" Dakova

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As Shalna awaited their landing, she also kept her guard. Not just about them, but in case any fauna or flora penetrated the safezone and attacked. It was almost like they could smell newcomers. Well, to be fair, they probably could.

As the ship landed, the airlock eventually opened and someone came out. Then, almost on cue, a Crevlin, a bird like creature, swooped down from above to attack. Shalna quickly put several arrows into it, and it dropped to the ground, dead.

"WElcome to Vertiga. My name is Shalna "Quietbird" Dakova, huntress and representative of the Vertigan Clans COmmisary Service, the organization that represents all clans equally to outsiders" she told them. "What is your name?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Sura Kintareg Character Portrait: Rim Fleet Activion Character Portrait: Shalna "Quietbird" Dakova

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Light greeted Sura's eyes, blinding her momentarily. Spotting a woman armed with a bow standing at the base of the landing area, Sura began to step forward when a screech sounded above her. Her two companions jumped backwards while she rolled forward. A moist thump came from behind her, signifying the fall of something. Turning, the body of an avian creature greeted her, stuck through with several arrows. Standing slowly, Sura opened the psy-link with the armorer of her ship.

"Greetings unto you, Captain Sura? How may I assist?" came from the other end, the voice belonging to a Kethan by the name of Alma Kisorijc.

"A blessing unto you, my friend. Were we assigned any special issue electrostasis weapons on this journey?" Sura responded.

"I'm afraid not. The extent of our armory consists of several sonic rifles, one Marker-type particle rifle, and two plasma carbines. There are, of course, the full load of L-class melee modules yet I feel that they will not serve too greatly. "

"An extensive enough selection for our operation. Bring us three L-class fists, the Marker rifle, and two sonic rifles, if it pleases you."

"Immediately, Sura." With that final response, Sura terminated the connection. In speech, the conversation would have taken time to accomplish, yet the psychic nature ensured almost instantaneous understanding. To any onlookers, it would have appeared that Sura had stood in place for no more than two seconds. Finishing that affair she returned to face the woman at the bottom of the landing area. Striding down the ramp, a useful addition for when lev deployment was ineffective, she came to stand in front of Shalna. On the route down, the helmets retracted from the heads of the three C'ran, disappearing into the rest of the suit.

"It is my honor to meet you, Shalna Dakova. My name is Sura Kintareg, licensed explorer for the Meritocracy of C'ran. My two companions are Hetari Guren and Naralya Feyoni. One of my crew members will be coming to us shortly with armaments, both for protection and exploration. Dual-utility is always preferable over single use."

As Sura was speaking, Alma descended from the airlock, dressed in the organo-synthetic suit which many Sakari and Kethan wore commonly. Hers were a sky blue, contrasting with the pigmentation of her skin, almost black. Behind her floated the armaments, resting on a silver platform formed of psychic energy. Bowing as she neared the small grouping, Alma transferred control of the system to Hetari before returning to the ship. Picking up the Marker rifle, Sura turned and presented the weapon to Shalna. "If you would like to inspect these, then you may do so."