It's actually starting to get kind of boring here at home. I don't have anything to do! Maybe paint the kitchen or something tomorrow. I'm serious. I'm about to go out and split some wigs.
[Unknown contact, jumped in just outside the killbox.]
[Get me name and designation, ASAP.]
[Uhh...Defender-class, sir. Colony ship.]
[Coming to bear, I see an Imperial FOF tag, sir. ADY-243, out of Amialdis.]
[Thank the Emperor! Hail them, get them onto the far port side, the Cobras are taking a hammering.]
[Aye aye, sir.]
Captain Archer put the SHIPCOM headset down, stepping back to his command chair.
Ten thousand souls. That was his crew. Lived or died, by HIS choices. He took a deep breath, and sat down, bringing up the TACNAV display. Dozens of red and green contacts swarmed above Cadia, a single yellow NAV marker showing a massive orbital defense platform in the center of the melee.
"We're being hailed. Patching it through."
Archer leaned forward as a grizzled man appeared on screen.
"ADY-243, this is Cadia Up. You're just in time."
Archer nodded. "Our pleasure. Orders?"
"Take the port side of the station, Captain."
Archer nodded to the helmsman, who swung Phoenix around the orbital dock.
"Bring us to alert one, flood the gun decks, and give me all ahead full. Link up with the Cobras."
Six Cobra-class Destroyers fought bitterly against two Despoiler battleships guarding a single Murder-class cruiser in low orbit. As Archer watched, one of the Cobras lit up and detonated, debris raining into the atmosphere.
"Come to new heading, two-zero-four, all ahead full. Ready Accelerator."
"Two-zero-four, aye sir."
The Mass Driver shell impacted the first Despoiler in the far stern, coming up underneath and gutting the Engineering section of the ship. The Cobras saw the weakness and fired their engines, cutting into the ship with well-aimed volleys. A second Destroyer was obliterated as the Despoiler's gunners tore it open, and the Phoenix's lances detonated it's ammo magazines and blew it into spinning fragments.
"Brace for debris." said the modar op. Archer felt small thumps as massive chunks of armor pinged off Phoenix's forward shields.
"What's that cruiser doing?" he asked. The op shook her head.
"I don't know sir."
"Captain! Torpedo teams reporting readiness."
"Fire all tubes, spread at fifty meters, long fuses."
Sixteen massive anti-ship missiles speared from Phoenix's bow. The Despoiler turned into the missiles and opened fire with it's lances, destroying eight of them. The close-in defenses killed another two, but the remainder smashed into it's prow and detonated, turning the front of the ship to flaming wreckage. It spun wildly, thrusters trying to correct the spin, and a Mass Driver slug blew it apart.
The Murder-class fired, turning a Cobra to slag in an instant.
"Holy Imperator." said Archer. "What in the name of god was that?"
"Unknown, sir. Energy weapon of some kind."
Torpedoes and smart slugs flew towards the ship, and suddenly as they neared their target, the rockets spun off course.
"Damn. They've got countermeasures, sir."
"Are they engaged in ground activity, lieutenant?"
"Looks like, sir. I'm picking up a signal from the ground."
Archer bit his lip.
Ten thousand souls.
"Howie, give me 175% on the engines." he said into the SHIPCOM.
"Sir, that'll only give us twenty seconds." said the Engineer.
"I know. 175, please."
"Your funeral, sir."
The COM went dead. Archer turned to the weapons con.
"What're the Drivers doing?"
"Down and charging. Those counters are messing with the magnets."
Archer felt the ship begin to lurch forward as the engines shifted into overdrive.
"Run them over, lieutenant."
The helmsman made the sign of the Aquila, and steered directly toward the Murder-class. Slugs and rockets impacted the forward shields, making Archer grip the armrests of his chair.
Phoenix hit the Murder-class at high burn, smashing into the port side. The ship was pulped, crushed, and shredded by Phoenix's blunt nose. The two shorn halves of the chaos cruiser fell into the atmosphere.
"We've got a transmission, sir." said the COMM op.
"The planet. It's a Chaos code, sir."
"Hold steady, fire holding thrusters."
The ship soaked up the Chaos transmission, feeding it into a single dataspike built into Andrew Zeltis' dataslate deep in the ship's hull. The doctor looked in barely suppressed glee as he began to decipher the code, humming a cheery tune under his breath.
You'll forgive me, but you must be mistaken. I've met your makers, and they don't even know your name...
GIVING CHASE- ORDO HERETICUS FIC (Updated Mar. 19)
Hat in the Ring