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Part of USS Resolute: The masks we wear and Bravo Fleet: Blood Dilithium

9 – Live to fight another day…

Resolute
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“Flip and burn!” Raan bellowed, grabbing hold of Armstrong and holding her steady as Kovash threw the ship into a high speed maneuver and the deck lurched. “Shields up, red alert. And get me a firing solution on some of those legs!” 

The situation had gone to hell in a handbasket and no mistake. But Raan was in his element. He’d been brought up as the premier of an entire planet but combat was where he’d found his home. 

“Aye sir, locked on,” came the deep, no-nonsense voice of Harrow, the Resolute’s chief security officer. 

“Take out a couple of those legs, give them something to think about,” Raan ordered, the view screen in front of them filled with the asteroids behind them. 

The damn spider-ship was running just like the arachnid it resembled, leaping from rock to rock after them. It was far more agile than he’d given it credit for but there was no visible source of power. He didn’t want to take out their main engines though. Not when they were operating from a position of fear. 

“Aye sir.” Harrow fired in controlled bursts and two legs were sheared off with laser precision. That was what Raan appreciated about the tactical officer. He was as cold and calculating as the vicious winters on Raan’s homeworld, accomplishing the mission objective with lethal efficiency.

The spider stopped, crashing into the rock beneath it and skitter-sliding across the unyielding surface. For a moment it looked like it would slide right off the surface of the asteroid and tumble into the next but at the last moment it lashed out with two legs, driving them deep beneath the surface to stop its uncontrolled tumble. 

The entire bridge crew held their breath, as did Raan. Would the spider mining ship regain its equilibrium and come after them again. But no. Once it had a hold on the rock, it hunkered down, clinging once more to the surface. 

“Hold distance,” Raan ordered Kovash, and looked over at Callahan only to find Allen was back at his post. His hair was wilder than usual, like he’d run his hands through it with abandon, but his gaze was focused. 

“Two mining legs have sustained major damage,” he reported. “Plus damage to their primary drive during the tumble. Looks like they’re staying put for now.”

Raan nodded. Staying put was the sensible option given the Resolute was agile, armed to the teeth and not afraid to get into a tangle. He paused and looked down at Armstrong, still clinging to his arm. 

“You did well, Lieutenant,” he offered in an undertone as he extricated himself from her grip. The young woman straightened up, a flush on her high cheekbones as she brushed her uniform down and then stalked over to the seat beside his. 

He watched her for a second, assessing her reactions. For a moment there, he’d thought he’d seen anger in the depths of her eyes which was not what he’d expected of the apparently mild-mannered young counselor. His gaze sought the little disc on the side of her neck, just below her ear, but the light was green. No warning signs detected. 

“Okay, let’s keep our distance, complete our survey of the asteroid field and move on, shall we? Keep an eye out for more mining ships,” he added. “Just in case the Tanvas has any friends out here.”

Turning, he returned to his seat, ever alert as the Resolute carried on its survey through the asteroid field, the bridge quiet and tense. Raan rubbed the stubble on his jaw. The miner’s reaction to the mere mention of telepaths was telling. The fear under the anger had been real, very real. That kind of fear was the type that made people make foolish and very dangerous decisions. 

Which meant the sand had begun to run in the Resolute’s hourglass. Whether that was just a trickle, or a raging torrent about to sweep them away was yet to be discovered but one thing was for sure… Raan didn’t intend to be caught on the back foot. 

“Bennett and Harrow, would you join Burton and I in the briefing room please? Kovash,you have the conn,” he said as he levered himself out of his chair again, barely having sat in it long enough to warm the cushioning. But his mother did always say he never sat in a seat, he merely polished it for a second before he was on the move again. 

As he walked, he tapped his commbadge to contact the ship’s chief medical officer. “Micheals, report to the briefing room.”

 

Comments

  • Okay, the description of the spider-ship pursuing them was actually very cool and unique. Loved it! Very image-provoking and I could see how it would look on screen. And I liked the disabling method of "not sure, but let's take out its legs". I can under the Tanvas' crew response to the mere mention of telepaths if they've had run-ins with the Devore. Certainly sells they've had bad encounters and are not keen for repeats.

    November 22, 2022