The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

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Eternal_Freedom
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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2019-02-05 12:55pm

Oooo goodie :D
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by fnord » 2019-02-05 01:38pm

Now I'm not sure which I'm more impatient for - the next bit, or the visuals. Dammit.
A mad person thinks there's a gateway to hell in his basement. A mad genius builds one and turns it on. - CaptainChewbacca

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by DKeith2011 » 2019-02-05 04:01pm

You'll probably get the next chapter before the visuals, so plan accordingly.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2019-02-05 04:19pm

I wouldn't put odds on that. Real life is being incredibly annoying at present. Nothing major, just many, many little things I'm trying to juggle.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by U.P. Cinnabar » 2019-02-05 06:24pm

fnord wrote:
2019-02-05 01:38pm
Now I'm not sure which I'm more impatient for - the next bit, or the visuals. Dammit.
Why not both, fnord?

@Phil Yeah, real life kind of sucks that way, sometimes. We'll wait patiently for the visuals and the new chapter.
"Beware the Beast, Man, for he is the Devil's pawn. Alone amongst God's primates, he kills for sport, for lust, for greed. Yea, he will murder his brother to possess his brother's land. Let him not breed in great numbers, for he will make a desert of his home and yours. Shun him, drive him back into his jungle lair, for he is the harbinger of Death.."
—29th Scroll, 6th Verse of Ape Law
"Indelible in the hippocampus is the laughter. The uproarious laughter between the two, and their having fun at my expense.”
---Doctor Christine Blasey-Ford

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by DKeith2011 » 2019-02-05 06:56pm

Eternal_Freedom wrote:
2019-02-05 04:19pm
I wouldn't put odds on that. Real life is being incredibly annoying at present. Nothing major, just many, many little things I'm trying to juggle.
Like being nibbled to death by ducks?

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2019-02-06 12:11pm

Pretty much, yeah.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Borgholio » 2019-02-06 03:00pm

DKeith2011 wrote:
2019-02-05 06:56pm
Eternal_Freedom wrote:
2019-02-05 04:19pm
I wouldn't put odds on that. Real life is being incredibly annoying at present. Nothing major, just many, many little things I'm trying to juggle.
Like being nibbled to death by ducks?
You will be assimilated...bunghole!

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by DKeith2011 » 2019-02-14 06:18pm

Any idea on how long, if any, a time jump will happen between books 2 and 3?

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by U.P. Cinnabar » 2019-02-14 06:29pm

2,500 years. The Kobolians and the Tau'ri will be fighting the Drago-Katzov Pride and Dylan Cunt's Hunt's massive ego. :lol:
"Beware the Beast, Man, for he is the Devil's pawn. Alone amongst God's primates, he kills for sport, for lust, for greed. Yea, he will murder his brother to possess his brother's land. Let him not breed in great numbers, for he will make a desert of his home and yours. Shun him, drive him back into his jungle lair, for he is the harbinger of Death.."
—29th Scroll, 6th Verse of Ape Law
"Indelible in the hippocampus is the laughter. The uproarious laughter between the two, and their having fun at my expense.”
---Doctor Christine Blasey-Ford

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2019-02-14 06:44pm

Ha! Not bloody likely. I'm thinking perhaps 3-5 years or so. Assuming I get that far of course.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by fnord » 2019-02-14 10:01pm

Would be nicely symmetric, to have a similar gap between each book.
A mad person thinks there's a gateway to hell in his basement. A mad genius builds one and turns it on. - CaptainChewbacca

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by DKeith2011 » 2019-02-14 10:49pm

Eternal_Freedom wrote:
2019-02-14 06:44pm
Ha! Not bloody likely. I'm thinking perhaps 3-5 years or so. Assuming I get that far of course.
You'll get there.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2019-02-24 07:30am

Despite the madness, the exhaustion, the absurdity of recent life, I have finally got a new chapter for you all! A big, juicy, 3200 word chapter as well. Introducing one Captain Sean Welch, UNSC and saying goodbye to an old friend...

From Hell’s Heart
Kobolian Combined Fleet


John Jellicoe held onto the railing around the central plot table as the massive Warstar Jupiter bucked underneath him. They had just weathered a potent volley of energy projector beams from the utterly deadly force of Supercarriers that had dropped out of slipspace almost on top of them with barely any warning. They faced five of the behemoths, the remaining two having instead engaged Harper’s force – a combat that John could spare no attention to; he could only fight what was in front of him.

The fight was quickly becoming a desperate one. For the first time since the battles of the Pegasus Campaign more than three years prior the Combined Fleet faced an enemy that had the edge in numbers, positioning and sheer firepower. Most of his ships had had just enough warning to execute evasive action and had dodged the opening volley. The two Warstars were among the exceptions, the massive ships were far too ungainly to make such manoeuvres at such short notice. Luckily they had the shield strength and generator capacity to weather that salvo and launch a retaliatory strike of their own.

Other ships were not so fortunate. By chance or by design, the opening volley had been concentrated on the Third Fleet, the Colonial ships. The destroyers Adroa and Ikenga were cored by multiple white beams. Even as the armour boiled away and the internal structures melted the computers realised the damage was irrecoverable and immediately began beaming the surviving crews off to the nearby Battlestar Pegasus.

It would be a brief respite, for the huge Battlestar was also targeted by that opening salvo. The shields mostly held and the two beams that did break through both the shields and the armour caused only minor damage to a few secondary systems, nothing that seriously impeded the ship’s fighting potential –or so it appeared at first.

Aboard the Jupiter, Admiral Jellicoe sized up the tactical position and immediately decided to withdraw from the immediate fight and move to join a far more favourable encounter. His orders rang out across Fleet Ops.

“All ships will execute immediate escape jump to a position near Admiral Harper’s force. Jumps should be plotted so that all ships can directly engage the two hostile targets.”

Fortunately a healthy level of paranoia in combat had become a hallmark of the various command staffs in the Combined Fleet and somewhat nervous navigators had been updating those jumps since they had first appeared to annihilate the initial Covenant battle group. The plots needed only minor adjustments and charging the drives for such a short jump took only seconds. The Fleet vanished in flashes of light only moments before the massive plasma salvo from the five Covenant behemoths arrived, the salvo doing nothing more than incinerating the wrecks of the two luckless destroyers.

They reappeared amidst a scene of chaos and fire. The Covenant supercarriers Incorruptible and Purifying Flame had dropped out of slipspace right on top of the First Strike Fleet – literally in the case of the latter ship, it had smashed through a part of the UNSC formation without a care. A dozen frigates and half a dozen destroyers were lost as they pancaked into the forward shields and exploded as the colossal energies ripped them apart. An immediate volley of plasma torpedoes and energy projector beams claimed another half-dozen frigates. Admiral Harper’s force was in danger of collapsing at the sudden and overwhelming assault.

Harper himself was remaining remarkably calm even as a fifth of his fleet died in moments. He shouted for evasive action and for all ships to swarm the nearest of the two supercarriers, to get in as close as possible. It would make coordinated fire nearly impossible but it would also reduce the number of Covenant weapon mounts that could target them in turn. He hoped it would also prevent the other enemy ship from engaging as well. He was half-way through ordering an escape jump when the Valiant’s AI Horatius announced the Kobolian Fleet had arrived. They made one hell of an entrance. Eighty-six flashes of light followed by thousands of smaller flashes as the Kobolian ships cut lose with every gun they had available.

One ship was not firing however. On the Battlestar Pegasus everything seemed to be going wrong at once. As soon as the ship had jumped there had been a colossal detonation in the aft of the vessel and main power failed, plunging the ship into darkness that was broken only by the red emergency lights. In CIC Lee Adama held fast to the plot table and called for a damage report.

It was a grim conversation. Something often overlooked by the Combined Fleet was that the Pegasus was the oldest ship they had, beating the second eldest, Warspite by three years. She had been in service for nearly ten years when the Colonies fell, had survived the harrowing events that followed and had then been repaired and upgraded at Terra. She had performed magnificently but the strain was real.

Those few minor hits minutes before had far more damning consequences – the primary heat exchangers had been restored to full function after their damage in the Cylon ambush four years ago when Lee first took command, as had the FTL drive, but once again those systems failed. This time, with the concurrent damage to several main coolant systems for the sublight and FTL drives the venerable Battlestar was in real trouble. It was not a single thing that failed, but rather a whole series of minor things that in isolation would have been barely felt but in total would doom the huge ship.

The coolant systems for FTL drive two had not been functioning at maximum capacity so the control systems had automatically isolated the drive and begun discharging the capacitors into the rest of the ship’s power grid. But the emergency FTL jump programming overrode those safety concerns, the Colonial Fleet and the Terran Navy believing it was better to have a damaged ship jump out and wreck the FTL in the process than not be able to jump away at all and be completely destroyed. So the FTL drives flared and activated for the short-range jump – and drive two failed catastrophically.

The mechanism shattered with considerable force but that damage was limited to a few nearby compartments. More difficult was the pulse of energy sent through the power grid which blew out circuit breakers all across the ship. Several of the main reactors automatically went into shutdown mode to try and contain the situation, not helped by several more vital coolant and fuel lines being severed by the destruction of the FTL drive. With only a handful of backup generators online, offensive systems were non-functional – even the shields were at low power, barely enough to withstand a few shots. Lee was just contemplating how he was going to extricate his ship from the perilous position they were in the Covenant made it worse.

Even without Pegasus joining in, the Alliance force had more than enough firepower on hand to make the enemy bleed. The superlasers flashed out, aiming for the more distant supercarrier, the one that wasn’t surrounded by UNSC ships. The Incorruptible bucked under the crushing power of those weapons, her shields failed in moments and the beams stabbed deep into the massive construct, shattering or vaporising everything in their way. The ship was sundered by massive detonations, breaking into fragments that spun and cartwheeled away from where, moments before, there had been a mammoth warship.

The Purifying Flame would avenge her though. The supercarrier’s weapons were struggling to track the fast-moving UNSC ships that were practically skimming her shields but now there were new targets right in their line of fire. And better yet, one of the larger ships appeared damaged, its shields severely depleted and trailing fuel and fire from a wound on the upper surface. Multiple white beams lanced out, all targeted on Pegasus.

This time Lee was flung to the deck as the beams savaged his wounded command. One beam cut deep into the port flight pod having had the good (or bad, depending on your perspective) luck to hit an area not covered by the superconducting armour – the launch tubes that lined the flight decks in the middle of the pod. Thirty launch tubes were gutted in moments, the Viper servicing bays farther back erupting into fire and explosions as fuel bunkers, munitions lockers and all manner of dangerous material – and crew – were caught in the deadly beam. Secondary explosions destroyed half of the elevators that brought fighters down from the landing decks and three larger blasts actually punctured the landing decks themselves, opening those compartments to space and thus extinguishing the fires.

A second beam had almost missed completely, instead of a knockout blow at the Battlestar’s midships section it vented its energy into the number-three sublight drive pod. Luckily the sublight drives had shut down when main power failed or else the damage would have been far worse. Even so the sublight drive was utterly wrecked, debris and fragments ripping into the number two and number four engines as well.

It was the final beam that spelled the Battlestar’s doom. It managed to hit the area of the dorsal hull that had been compromised by the loss of the FTL drive and punched deep into the ship, immolating all but one of the reserve power generators and leaving Pegasus almost completely dead in space.

Lee Adama knew that this was the end. His Battlestar had taken too much damage to be salvageable. Maybe if they had been in close proximity to Olympus Base or the Nidavellir or Safe Harbour the ship could have been saved. But far from home, in the middle of a vast engagement, no, the ship would fight no more.

He reached down and began entering some final commands into the console attached to the plot table, activating the emergency beamout protocols and hoping against hope that they would have enough time to get the remaining crew – and the survivors from the two destroyers – off in time. He didn’t bother hoping they could be evacuated to a ship out of danger, such a ship didn’t exist in the star system at present.

His crew would have the time needed to evacuate thanks to an unexpected intervention. Among the fleet engaging the remaining supercarrier was the superheavy cruiser UNSC Thermopylae. She was a venerable old battlewagon, having survived dozens of battles against the Covenant all the way through the war. Her current skipper, Sean Welch, had started his career as an awed young Ensign on this very ship just as the war began. Now his face showed the years and his eyes were heavy as he yet again watched human ships die under Covenant fire.

Something within him snapped as he saw Pegasus savaged by white beams and then float lifeless in space. He knew they would be trying to evacuate the thousands-strong crew but they needed time to do it. He barked out orders to the ship’s AI, Leonidas, to plot a jump that put them between the enemy and the Pegasus. The massive cruiser vanished in a flash of light, reappearing just in time to intercept a pair of plasma torpedoes that had been heading for the wounded Battlestar. They splashed across Welch’s forward shields but the ship barely moved under the Captain’s feet, the huge fusion generators allowing the ship to survive this and many other hits.

“Weapons, full MAC salvo, target the weakest part of the shields that you can” Captain Welch said, his body unconsciously dropping into a Taekwondo ready stance as he did; old habits die hard.

The firing solution was quickly arrived at and the cruiser shuddered as nine six-hundred-tonne MAC rounds were fired off in rapid succession. They flashed across the handful of kilometres to their chosen target in moments and impacted on the extremely strong shields of the Purifying Flame. Normally those shields would have easily handled such an impact but luck, or possibly fate, was on the side of Captain Welch, Leonidas and Thermopylae.

The supercarrier was under attack from all sides, dozens of UNSC ships were swarming around it while the Kobolian force stayed at range and hammered away with every gun they had: MAC rounds, Archer missiles, turbolaser bolts, plasma beams, Ancient beam weapons, megalasers, hypervelocity guns, everything. So many threats from so many vectors were overtaxing the shields and the control systems. Normally, the ship’s computers would automatically redistribute energy from shield generator to shield generator in real-time to deal with incoming fire but with such a huge vessel and with the number of threats the systems could not keep up.

The computers were just in the process of drawing power away from that particular sector when the first of the rounds from Thermopylae struck. The systems realised their mistake and moved to counteract it but it was too late. Six rounds slamming into the same compromised point in three seconds was enough to briefly collapse the shields in that area and let the last three rounds through the gap.

On such a large and well-built vessel as this even three MAC heavy rounds in one area would be a minor inconvenience at most but luck was still aiding the humans. The rounds landed in succession, punching deeper and deeper into the aft hull with each impact. The third round finally came to a halt just one compartment away from the massive slipspace reactor. Enough debris and plasma from the impacts had been hurled ahead of the rounds to punch through into that vast and heavily-protected chamber and cause irreparable damage. The Purifying Flame would never leave the star system.

That didn’t mean it wasn’t a very dangerous threat however.

Back on the Pegasus things were proceeding well. In just a minute nearly all of the crew had been evacuated to the Eridanus, a process sped up by TCN standing orders that meant crews were not supposed to bring vital personal effects with them when deployed on missions in wartime. With no one wanting to rush back to their quarters to retrieve their father’s lucky lighter, their mother’s locket or anything like that the process sped up considerably.

In CIC Lee Adama, his XO Colonel Hoshi and Major Dualla were the last ones remaining. Lee was on the wireless to Jellicoe, outlining his plan to send the Battlestar off with a bang.

“I have just enough power in the capacitors for a very short range FTL jump…and I still have twelve groundstrike missiles with half-loads of warheads in the silos. I’ve plotted a jump inside the supercarrier’s shields, as close as possible to centre-mass. The warheads will detonate a second after the jump.”

Jellicoe’s voice came back, saddened at the thought. ”It’s a good plan Lee, though I hate to see the Pegasus go down like this.”

Lee agreed with the Admiral on that point. “Better than towing her to the breakers John, and this way she goes down fighting. Plus I have a little idea for a final send-off. You need to get the rest of the UNSC fleet out of range though, this will be one hell of a kaboom.”

”The orders have gone out Apollo, they’re jumping to link up with Stanforth, Cole and Dying Light as we speak. I guess we’re concentrating the Fleet after all. Set your countdown and then get the hell out of there, you are expressly ordered not to go down with your command – I really don’t want to have to tell the Old Man why you aren’t coming home.” John’s voice was a curious mix of light-hearted levity and deadly seriousness.

“Copy that Iron Duke. This is Pegasus, signing off.” Lee put the handset back on the plot table and looked around at the dark CIC and his two remaining compatriots, the last people aboard. “Well it’s been a hell of a ride hasn’t it?”

Hoshi just nodded while Dee smiled at her husband. “You did what you said you would Lee, you gave the ship her pride back.”

Lee smiled at that. “Yeah, I think we did. Only one thing left to do then. Hoshi?”

The two stepped back to the plot table and removed their authenticator keys. They briskly went through the process to arm the warheads in the groundstrike silos on the ship’s dorsal bow and set the various timers. As they weren’t technically launching the massive projectiles the process was a lot less involved than it had been when they were exterminating the last of the Wraith.

In a minute the timers were set, the jump was plotted and the warheads were primed and ready for maximum yield. The three senior officers took a last look around and Lee called out a final "thank you" to the ship before they were beamed away, appearing in the Fleet Ops centre on the Eridanus. Admiral Kirov looked up at their arrival and waved them over.

“Apollo, Hoshi, Dee, good to see you made it off. I understand the old girl is going out with a bang?”

Lee nodded. “Yep, in about thirty seconds. Can I borrow a handset? I have one last message for the Covenant.” Kirov just nodded, his expression amused despite the circumstances. Lee picked up the wireless and set it for an open channel, with the Covenant translation systems tied in so they would understand this last message.

“Attention Covenant Forces, this is Commodore Sir Lee Adama of the Battlestar Pegasus. Do you really think this ship is going down that easily? You clearly have never heard my ship’s motto, but you’re about to get a first-hand lesson. I bring the Thunder. See you in Hell.”

The channel closed as the last of the UNSC ships jumped away, apart from the stubbornly faithful Thermopylae. Plasma torpedoes were just starting to be fired at the still-fighting Kobolian ships when the Pegasus made her last jump. She reappeared within the Purifying Flame’s shields, just a hundred metres from the central hull section. The jump was a strain too far for the remaining FTL drive and it too failed catastrophically, a huge fireball bursting out of the upper aft hull, not that it mattered. Further forwards forty-eight warheads in the groundstrike missile silos reached the end of their timers and detonated, each one primed for a maximum-yield detonation of fifty gigatons.

The Battlestar Pegasus ceased to exist in a millisecond of intolerable light. The Purifying Flame followed suit a tenth of a second later as the vast energies raged out from the point of detonation. Even a Supercarrier’s shields would have been overwhelmed by such a colossal force, but this energy was released within the centre of the ship and nothing in existence in either universe could possibly survive it. The mammoth Covenant vessel disintegrated, the largest remaining fragment was just five centimetres across.

The Kobolian ships, and the Thermopylae, jumped away to link up with the other UNSC forces. The time for dispersed forces was over, now they needed every ship and every gun concentrated in one force as the Covenant were on the move.

Even as the Purifying Flame and the Incorruptible died, the remaining five Supercarriers, twenty-two light carriers and thirty-one battle groups were closing in on the Fortress shield while the situation on the ground was going from bad to worse.
They had given the Covenant a very bloody nose but the fight was far from over.

=========

Bye bye Pegasus, you did the Colonies proud.

Anyways. Covenant losses this chapter are two Supercarriers. UNSC losses are eighteen frigates, six destroyers and light damage to two heavy cruisers. Kobolian losses are two destroyers and one Battlestar.

Of the six Battlestars that fought at Terra, only Warspite and Lionheart remain. I'm really rough on the poor TCN ain't I.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by LadyTevar » 2019-02-24 02:33pm

You gave The Beast a great sendoff. Not everyone gets to take their enemy with them when they go.

Great chapter. :)
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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2019-02-24 03:47pm

Thanks :) I'm basically going for either heroic, awesome deaths for capital ships (Barham, Galactica, Pegasus) or sudden, dramatic ones (Excalibur).
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by fnord » 2019-02-24 11:34pm

Blimey. Talk about a proper shoeing.

So that would make Warspite and Eridanus the only pre-Fall battlewagons still in service?

One thing though - in your dramatis personae, you had listed Lee Adama as a flag officer, flying his flag from Pegasus. Doesn't that imply he has a flag captain to actually drive his flagship?
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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by U.P. Cinnabar » 2019-02-25 08:55am

In the GINO Colonial Fleet, flag officers directly commanded their own battlestars.
"Beware the Beast, Man, for he is the Devil's pawn. Alone amongst God's primates, he kills for sport, for lust, for greed. Yea, he will murder his brother to possess his brother's land. Let him not breed in great numbers, for he will make a desert of his home and yours. Shun him, drive him back into his jungle lair, for he is the harbinger of Death.."
—29th Scroll, 6th Verse of Ape Law
"Indelible in the hippocampus is the laughter. The uproarious laughter between the two, and their having fun at my expense.”
---Doctor Christine Blasey-Ford

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2019-02-25 12:08pm

Yeah I'm playing things a little loose with that. Officially, all the Commodores are also de jure CO's of their Battlestars, but in the TCN the Battlestar's XO is Captain-grade and is the de facto ship commander (hence why way back in Act 1 Fireman refers to Captain Watkins as his ship's XO).

In the remains of the Colonial Fleet that isn't the case, the XO will be Colonel-grade and is also effectively the ship's commander, but they just don't have enough skilled people to have Commanders running around as XO's to the Commodores. Add to that the fact that aside from Eridanus (which was built with Flag facilities in mind) the pre-Fall Colonial ships didn't have an equivalent to Fleet Ops, hence why Cain and later Adama commanded everything from CIC.

Yes, I know Galactica had the Combat Operations Centre or whatever it was called but IIRC that was only once used for overseeing an operation (Season 1's "The Hand of God"), the other times it appeared it was as a planning room.

In an ideal world, Colonial Admiral's would have Flag-Commanders while they worked from a Fleet Ops equivalent, but this ain't an ideal world - and I'm still not completely sold on the fact that Colonial Commanders aren't flag officers - the Pegasus being a case in point, since you had Admiral Cain flying her flag aboard her but even in peacetime the next senior officer was Colonel Belzen as XO.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by fnord » 2019-02-25 02:09pm

That's what threw me. Guess I was applying too much of the real-world flag captain model without realising it.
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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by swelch51 » 2019-02-25 08:48pm

Sad to see The Beast go down, but she couldn’t have asked for a better sendoff. Helluva better one than she got on the show in my opinion. Perfect match having Leonidas be the AI of the Thermopylae. :)

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Sky Captain » 2019-02-26 02:03am

Yeah, Pegasus went out with a Bang! I like it when unexpected technical malfunctions sometimes cause trouble. The Purifying Flame seemed to have crazily durable shields, it mostly stood up against every weapon except superlasers of nearly hundred ships for a minute or more. Shouldn't all secondary weapons combined from all ships bring down shields quickly? They are individually weaker, but there are so many of them. It looked like there was a little tactical blunder when all superlaser ships targeted only one Supercarrier instead splitting fire to take out both like they did previously.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by fnord » 2019-02-26 03:08am

I think Jellicoe wanted to be sure of flattening one supercarrier as fast as possible, to reduce the dakka the Covenant could throw at the allied Fleet. As you said, Sky Captain, those battlewagons are crazy durable, so the option that removes one full supercarrier's worth of dakka (whether by kaboom or damage) more reliably would be preferred.

There's also the secondary effects to consider - a damaged supercarrier tends to be far less likely to explode and pelt its escorts with fragments and other debris.
A mad person thinks there's a gateway to hell in his basement. A mad genius builds one and turns it on. - CaptainChewbacca

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2019-02-26 02:09pm

In fairness to BSG, the Pegasus got a far better ending than the Galactica did. Sure, the setup and reasoning behind it where absurd and makes Lee out to be a total moron (no wonder he got busted back to Major afterwards) but as a death scene? Pretty damn epic.

Jellicoe smacked only one target with the superlasers because Harper's force were surrouding the other one. As in "almost skimming the shields." Given how deadly the big rayguns are, he could probably have taken both Covenant targets down...and taken the entire First Strike Fleet with them.

As for the Purifying Flame taking a lot of damage. Well, I've previously established that it takes twenty S-MAC shots to bring down the shields (1000 gigatons or thereabouts, same as Nemesis' main gun at full power). Just one S-MAC round is equivalent in terms of energy to 833,000 ordinary MAC rounds. I don't think those shields were too powerful as written. If anything, they failed too easily, which is why the ship lost due to the "golden BB" of a few rounds slipping through a weakened shield sector at exactly the wrong moment and luckily damaging the slipspace reactor so it couldn't escape.

And not being able to jump into slipspace does nothing to affect it's shield strength or firepower or even sublight speed. Think about the Barham over Terra. No FTL, weakened shields, badly outnumbered - still went down fighting like a badass.

Note that this is also the way the first Supercarrier kill over Carver V occurred - a damaged ship jumping inside the shields with live nukes.

Also, swelch, yeah having Leonidas be the Thermoplyae's AI was too good an opportunity, especially since I already mentioned they take on personality aspects to suit their ships - the Everest having a mountaineer called Hilary, the Trafalgar having Horatio Nelson, the Valiant having Horatius (of "how shall man die better, than facing fearful odds?" fame) and so on.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Natzo » 2019-02-28 03:00pm

Funny enough, I found this information on YouTube about the Mercury-class little before reading this chapter. It's interesting to read.
If you read the BSG comics and novels they present some interesting pieces of information about the Mercury-class. For example, we find out that even though it's almost twice as big as the Jupiter class, the Mercury class's interior is mostly taken up by fabrication facilities (not weapons). So being bigger in this case is not necessarily an advantage. The Mercury class was considered a "test-bed" for new technologies (like on-board Viper factories), but was never intended to be mass produced as it was absurdly expensive.

Many Admirals considered the Mercury-class to be bloated and preferred the cheaper Valkyrie-class, and refit Jupiter classes. Being posted to a highly expensive Mercury-class was considered a "prestige" post (but one with very little fleet authority). The Fleet Adrmirals stuck Admiral Cain on the Pegasus to "honor" her, but secretly they all thought she was crazy and unfit for commanding fleets. They wanted her someplace where she wouldn't be able to make important decisions.

We also find out about some ship war games that were carried out with the Pegasus against the smaller Valkyrie class. Admiral Cain ended up actually losing in the war games repeatedly against older smaller battlestars. The reason? Because she was incredibly inflexible, and not able to adapt to changing/unconventional tactics. She was too by the book. Other Captains, and ship commanders secretly made fun of her for inability to win with a larger more modern ship. So yeah, the BSG books and comics are interesting
Glad I'm not the only one who thinks having viper producing facility on board a battlestar is ridiculous.

Sure, it does make the Mercury extremely valuable after the destruction of the colonies, but it's worse than useless in both conventional and unconventional warfare. If you have to switch production from your infrastructure and put them on the front line, they're something terribly wrong.

Not to mention that a production line for any aircraft would require very huge facilities. Just imagine how much smaller a Mercury can be without the fabrication facilities, or how much fuel or extra armor and munitions can take its place. According to many sources, a significantly smaller Valkyrie-class have as much armament as much bigger Mercury-class.

Honestly, looking at the design of the ship, I'm not surprised the Mercury loss against a Valkyrie.
With SG tech would solve a lot of these issues, but so far vipers have played very little in terms of roles.

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