PEACE STATION

CONQUEST


G.A.S. ARCHLIGHT
HIGH ORBIT OVER SERLIS 7 COLONY
08:45 PM(LOCAL TIME)


"Just five more hours" thought Captain Morliss of the Gigerdi Alliance Heavy cruiser the "Archlight". He had been in the command of the Archlight for six years, over time he had been in two major engagements with the Archlight in the Third Bacterian war. He had won both of the engagements with his superior Strategy skills and the experience of his fine crew. The Archlight had been hit bad only once and had to be on the dock for quite some time, but when Morliss got his ship back it truly
was something to him. The Command had told him few months ago that he might be on the line for a promotion, Morliss had been waiting for it quite sometime. Since then he had been informed that this would be his final mission in command of the Archlight That didn't upset him at all, he had been waiting for a change to get a nice desk job in the GA headquarters for the remaining years. Of course it was obvious that Morliss would miss his crew, but he decided to go visit them when he would have the time between his shifts. Morliss was old but still quite the looker thought the females of his species. "Captain, there is a priority message from the sector command starbase." Commander Wells interrupted Morliss's dreaming, Morliss stood up and walked to the Comm. Unit. "I wonder what does those bastards at command want?" he turned the Comm unit on from it's Screensaver function. He quickly pressed a few buttons and the Comm unit connected to the main command subspace frequency within seconds. "Ahh, captain Morliss, good that you were able to contact us so quickly" said Admiral Lewis from the "New Pegasus" base in the Deliroi system. "What does this concern?" asked Morliss seriously. "Well, we decided to throw a party for your final hours in command." Said the Admiral a bit laughing from Morliss's serious attitude. "Oh well, in that case…we shall be there in five!" said Morliss smiling and completely forgetting his hate for the "Command". "Good, we shall be waiting for you." said the Admiral laughing. "All right Mr. Wells, seems like there is a party we need to attend to." Said Morliss smiling while walking to the Turbolift with Wells "Indeed." replied Wells. Soon after the "Archlight" jumped away to the Sector command Starbase in which the crew had a shore leave.

NEW PEGASUS STARBASE
DELIROI SYSTEM,ENIGMA SECTOR,BETA QUADRANT
09:34

Captain Morliss walked into a small room which was full of funny looking Gigerdian admirals and crewmen. The tall Admiral in the back started to speak. "Now Morliss, this is your final command aboard the Archlight and we wish to give you a small present of appreciation." The Admiral gave Morliss an Old Medal of honor from the "old days". Morliss looked for a little while and looked to the crowd who were waiting for his reply. "Well, this certainly an astonishing present….Thank you all!" Morliss Yelled happily. The Crowd was very happy, too and they clapped their hands. Then drinks were served and a sound of small Chatter was echoing around the room. A lot of people were still greeting Morliss who was at the center of it all, when suddenly the Tall admiral had a message to his Communicator and had to leave the party area quite hastily. Morliss was looking at the door where the admiral had left and wondered what had happened. Commander Wells had also joined the party, but was too busy playing a stupid "10 things I hate about a Hemmoian" partygame with a few other crew-members Morliss walked to the window and looked out of it, he could see that the Archlight was slowly moving around the station and it passed a pair of corvettes on it's way to the Port side of the station. "How things have changed" thought Morliss, while he was waiting for something he wasn't sure about. Suddenly, a pair of Lieutenants ran to the room and shouted: "They have attacked Genia and Durliss!!" The crowd stopped their doings and ran to the hall. There the tall admiral was writing something to a clipboard and gave it to the lieutenant standing beside him." All right, listen up!" The admiral started. "Just a few minutes ago we received word that a enemy positively identified as the La'Fin, have begun an invasion of Beta quadrant" this sentence had the whole group to start talking loudly. "It would seem that they're attempting to take one system after another, not a full scale operation." "Anyway, we are going to send out all the fleets in the beta quadrant to pursue their invasion force." Morliss was listening quietly. "So far our plan should be to stop their advance to the more populated systems of the Beta quadrant and drive them to the dimensional gate where they arrived here to. "But I thought that we made a peace treaty with the La'Fin just a few hours ago?!" yelled one of the crewmen from the back. "Wrong again, it seems that they are using this treaty as a cover to quickly do hit-and run attacks and move to the second target quickly." These words put the whole room to a quick silence for a few seconds. "I want all of you to form an offensive fleet from all of the remaining beta quadrant GA military, insys-militia, and other defensive forces to protect this quadrant." "Now, we don't know if they are already moving here, so get to your ships and troops together and ready!" said the admiral moving to the turbolift at the back, Morliss walked away to the second turbolift with a grim look on his face. "Wells, we have to get to the Archlight." Morliss looked at Commander Wells who was shocked of the report. "This is madness, we just signed a peace treaty with them…they can't attack us." A lot of other personnel were running through the halls. "That must mean that they got Kirenas station, damn!" Morliss said while Wells was still thinking of the massacre of Genia and Durliss.
Morliss was referring to the Station constructed near the La'Fin wormhole in which the first contact was made between the Gigerdi Alliance and the La'Fin Republic. The first contact was also a disaster, but a hasty nonaggression treaty was formed for a few months until the La'Fin were accused of attacks to the innocent Braccattian Kingdom. A Taskforce was sent to discover the truth in the Braccattian territories and drive the mysterious attackers away, with good results. Indeed, the secret attackers were the La'Fin. When the Diplomatic ties between the Gigerdians and the La'Fin became more and more impossible to uphold, the La'Fin asked for an audience from the Gigerdian senate and they were granted with one. In the meeting, the La'Fin ambassador explained that a Renegade faction of the La'Fin Republic would have been doing the attacks, but were ready to form a peace treaty and stop all hostile actions. First, the public didn't believe them, but when the La'Fin ambassador brought another La'Fin with him, who told that there indeed was a civil war which had just ended and both sides wanted peace. So, in that moment the both La'Fin sides agreed to a Peace treaty and most of the public decided to forgive the past hostilities and start a new era of peace. Wrong again, it seemed now that they tried to do the same to the Gigerdians as they had tried to do to the Texians few months ago, in which the Gigerdian and Texian forces fought side by side until the La'Fin raiders were either killed or captured…..maybe this was a retaliation.


G.A.S. ARCHLIGHT

ON ROUTE TO THE VERSUS 5 SYSTEM

03:56 (LOCAL TIME)


"What's the status of the Fleet ? " asked Morliss while sitting on his command chair looking at the disturbed bridge crew.
"Well, it is a pretty scrapped up pile of old Garrison ships, wish we could been able to mobilize more ships." Wells replied. And he was right, the whole fleet consisted of two Olympia class corvettes, one Hauler MkII transport, two Geffron transport cruisers and of course the MkIII heavy cruiser "Archlight". The whole crew was nervous, knowing that the La'Fin forces had several hundreds of more ships and the nervous part was, that there was some kind of "Leader-dreadnought" out there…. "How long till' we reach the target, mister Wells? " asked Morliss while he stood up. "Since we can't use the Nexus drive due to the fact that those corvettes are not equipped with one, I estimate about an hour in hyperspace" Wells informed hastily. "Damn, wish we would have more time to prepare." Morliss replied "I wonder if the Hephaestus plans to make a stand, they should." Morliss said referring to the independent colony world which had just received it's independence
from the GA, their fleets were semi large and their system was just a few jumps away from the New Pegasus. They have had a major battle of the control of the system before the GA government gave them their independence. The leader of the state was an ex-government employee, now known as the President Vaine. By he's side, was the ex-fleet admiral Corzeer of the Fifth fleet. He was the defense minister in Hephaestus. "Well, I hope they would help, but they're just outlaws." Wells said walking to his chair in the bridge. All of the bridge officers were on duty and ready. "Good, run a final check on all fighter squadrons, Mr. Wells" Morliss ordered


F.H.N.S. TRITON

IN ORBIT AROUND HEPHAESTUS

HEPHAESTUS SYSTEM, ENIGMA SECTOR, BETA QUADRANT


President Vaine looked out of the Former GA Military's heavy cruiser's view ports, this was the flagship of the Hephaestus republic now. Fleet admiral Corzeer was standing beside him, silently looking in to the future. The Triton had been modified significantly during the months before the big fight against the government and the initial independence. Seven Delphi class heavy frigates were waiting silently at the left and right of the Poseidon, some fighter squadrons were forming near the ships. The Hephaestus armed forces was still relatively small, but was growing constantly with old design's modified as new. As Corzeer was the commander of the Hephaestus military forces, Vaine tried to keep the political wing under control. "Sir, the executive Council is waiting…..for quite some time." Corzeer nodded, as Vaine was just looking outside the Viewports. Vaine turned and walked to the small communication console in the desk of the observation area. "They can wait, I have some things to do." Vaine replied and sat down to the nearby chair. "But, Mister president…..I thought that we had to meet the council first." Corzeer said. "Well, they'll wait. As always." Vaine replied a bit angrily. "The DHR Protection fleet is late, for some reason…..this has got me worried." Vaine said referring to the Democratic Hemmoian republic in which the Hephaestus was a part of. The Leader of the DHR, Karellen had promised his co-operation in the matter. The Hephaestus needed allies, and the DHR was one of the first to be. "Good thing we can at least rely on the Smugglers, giving us supplies and restricted weapons, I hope..." Corzeer said, Suddenly the Comm-beep alarm sounded on the computer on the desk, "Open Comm-channel." Vaine said. The Face of Admiral Fezer of the New Pegasus starbase appeared into the viewscreen, Corzeer looked surprised. "Good day gentlemen, I have heard from your council that you can be reached from here." The Admiral started, Vaine looked to the admiral and replied: "Yes, was there something you wanted or are you inviting us to tea party perhaps?" The Admiral looked a bit annoyed, but decided to answer anyway: "No, we're informing you about the La'Fin republic's invasion of your System along with other nearby GA bases" Both of the Hephaestus men looked suspicious. "No, can't be. We just signed a treaty with them." Vaine replied. "Wrong, they seem to be using it as a cover to do quick hit-and run attacks." The Admiral said. "You got any proof, admiral?" asked Corzeer, "Yes, the colonies of Genia 5 and Durliss have been completely destroyed along with a shipyard facility." The Admiral continued drastically."I see,I'll inform my XO's about the situation. "I was hoping that you could send a fleet to intercept them, our fleet is also moving to intercept the La'Fin" The admiral said. "Are you proposing a joint operation?" Vaine Asked, "Do what's best for the mission, Admiral Fez out." The Admiral said ending the conversation. "Didn't we just left this party?" Vaine said oddly.


HEPHAESTUS CAPITAL CITY

PRESIDENT VAINE'S OFFICE

HEPHAESTUS SYSTEM, ENIGMA SECTOR, BETA QUADRANT


"Okay gentlemen, what we have got ?" Vaine asked while the last of the Ship commanders walked into his office, the office table was full of patrol reports, Stellar maps, ship data and cargo reports. "We can mobilize armada of approximately 7, maybe 10 ships." Said the captain of the Frigate, Yokohama. "7 maybe 10?! The La'Fin have at least 10 times that much of ships." Vaine replied, "I'm sorry, but that's all we can promise without compromising the safety of the home system." another attendant informed. "How long till' they'll be here?" Asked Vaine, Corzeer was looking to the stellar maps.
"Unknown, about a few hours…Maybe" Corzeer replied drastically. "I want you and the Triton to lead our armada. The Yokohama and the Gainesburgh will accompany you." Vain ordered. "What about those new corvettes we just got from the assembly line?" Asked Corzeer, Vaine looked to the ship report display. "Take them, too and you can have those two transports also." Vaine said. "The rest of you, remain in defensive positions around the main planet. Dismissed." Vain said to the group hastily. "Sir,there are two men from the Section 18 office of Hephaestus here, they want to meet you." The Voice Of Vaine's Advisor came from the other side of the room. The whole group went silent for a moment before the S18 agents walked in. "Let them come." Vaine said. Two Male Gigerdians walked in, wearing the black uniforms of the S18. "It is good that you have decided to hear us, because we're here to help." The second agent said silently, the taller S18 agent had a Black cloak around his body. "We have heard of the situation and we hear that you are in need of a couple of good squad leaders." the second agent said. "That's right, but only for Non-teeps…..I'm sorry." Captain Fenrik of the Yokohama answered sarcastically pointing he's finger to the door, Vaine looked at the men and said: "Wait, we are quite short handed here…Maybe they could help." "So now we begin to recruit those things too…this is just great." Fenrik said walking out of the door. "So, you both have flown fighters before, right?" Vaine asked with a hope in his tone of voice. "Yes, we have our Infiltrators ready and fueled, Mr.president." Said the Taller Agent with an odd smile "Good, you're on the team." Vaine said smiling.


F.H.N.S. TRITON

NEAR HEPHAESTUS SYSTEM'S THIRD PLANET

HEPHAESTUS SYSTEM, ENIGMA SECTOR, BETA QUADRANT


Fer and Dergus, the Section 18 agents were standing at the flight deck of the huge modified heavy cruiser. The Hephaestus offensive fleet was positioning themselves to a formation before they could jump to the fleet gathering point. The Triton's four fighter squadrons were being rearmed and refueled for the defense, unfortunately both of the former squad leaders had been killed a few months back, at the liberation battle of Hephaestus. Two of the modified Olympia-class corvettes were taking positions around the Triton while the other ships of the armada were moving into escort positions, there's still a few minutes until the jump. Fleet admiral Corzeer had been in contact with the GA forces a few hours a head of the Hephaestus armada and they had planned hasty defense. Fer and Dergus walked to the small gantry at the back of the hall and there they saw the whole two flight wing pilots standing. "Are you the 1st fighter wing of the Triton? the Shadow Killer squadron?" asked Fer looking to the female Gigerdian pilot at the front, the female looked to Fer's uniform and smiled evilly "Yep, you found the right squad, but……I don't take orders from Section 18." The woman said. "I see, but looks like you don't have much of a choice here…… these are orders from president Vaine himself." Fer answered cockily. "Look, I don't take orders from no Section 18 agents, I'm the squad leader here." The Woman said getting a bit angry, Fer liked the tone of her voice even if it was a bit angry. "Anyway, I'm taking command of the squadron!" Fer yelled to the pilots at the back. "All right, we can work this out even with you." The Woman said getting confused by Fer's quick attitude. Dergus had been assigned to the second fighter squadron known as the "Screaming Banshee squadron". All Pilots were brought to the briefing room, Admiral Corzeer was looking to the crowd nervously. Suddenly a holographic message broadcast to the huge board in the room.

TO : HEPHAESTUS FORCES
FROM : GA STRATEGIC COMMAND
SBJT : RE: INVASION
DATE : 3362.357; 1800 HOURS ZULU TIME
Long-range probes, DSSS, reckon and SWACS flights have detected a large force of La'Fin vessels approaching GA / Texian/ Hephaestus Republic space. Task Force Alpha is to rendezvous with other GA forces in the Beta Quadrant. Hostilities are likely. The Hephaestus Navy Second Fleet and the Civilian militia is to delay this invading force to provide GA with enough time to respond in force. The La'Fin fleet must be delayed at least two days. Gigerdi Alliance homeguard forces from surrounding systems will assist with the intercept. Some GA fleet assistance will be available. The La'Fin ships possibly belong to a La'Fin warlord called Balax ornithor. As you know, we have been comparing notes with the Braccatians of the La'Fin fleet capabilities that entered our space over a year ago. Be aware that the aforementioned large faction of the La'Fin Republic is clearly acting against the peace treaty which was signed with them a few days ago. Observed performance matches Intell provided by GA. See attached specifications. These ships are to be considered a Class 1 threat. Fleet Admiral Corzeer, I'll be straight with you about this. We're probably looking at another invasion like the one in 3361 with the potential for it to be considerably worse. The La'Fin are throwing everything they have at us and frankly, we weren't ready for it. Our probes have detected, aside from these ships, a dreadnought plus dozens of lighter warships ranging from corvettes to heavy cruisers. There may even be a carrier or two. I also think you're entitled to know why we're staging our intercept in Okas, instead of Hellespont. There are three reasons: First, Okas lies in the shortest path between the La'Fin dimensional gate and the Ivor prime, the enemies most likely route. Secondly, Okas is a jump point nexus, allowing our forces to move around the sector quickly should the La'Fin and their forces choose a different path of attack. Finally, Okas colony itself is still uninhabitable from Dominion radiation warheads dropped a decade ago, meaning that there are no civilians to worry about. I'll see you at the rendezvous point. Good luck!
Admiral Jer Fezer
Gigerdi alliance military strategic command


Most of the personnel in the room were shocked to hear about the La'Fin forces breaking the newly announced peace treaty and attacking helpless civilian colonies out on the way to the more populated sectors. The way that the message was broadcast was giving everybody an idea of the La'Fin's plan. All of the higher officers departed after the message was shown to everyone in the room. The Hephaestus fleet jumped into Hyperspace due to the fact that most of the ships weren't modified with the new Nexus drives. The atmosphere was tense, everybody knowing that they could not stop the whole enemy armada….. only a small part of it. Admiral Corzeer was reviewing the star charts with his aides and ordering the fighter wings with defense patrols. There still were a few hours until the fleet would reach the initial gathering point and split into two large fleets ordered to defend the Beta quadrant.


F.H.N.S. TRITON

SOMEWHERE IN THE HYPERSPACE

NEAR SYSTEM 23455


Corzeer was in his ready-room watching the report from the G.A.S Navarone, the first frigate to get out of the La'Fin's hit-and run tactics. The McCall system, which included a GA shipyard had been almost completely destroyed with the Navarone escaping just in time to warn the New Pegasus Starbase. Now, the Navarone had been ordered as a security ship to the New Pegasus System, along with a couple of other cruisers. Corzeer hoped that the message to the GA fleet command had been received, because without reinforcements the armada would surely be lost. Suddenly the door to the Ready room opened and a lieutenant walked in, he looked pretty firm at the moment at then reported: "Sir, We received a message from a GA carrier group, they are interested to accompany us to the gathering point", Corzeer was happy for a moment to hear about the forces being gathered. "Good, did you acknowledge the leading ship's name?" Corzeer said while standing up and walking to the bridge, "Yes, it is the G.A.S Yamato, it is a light carrier." The lieutenant informed with haste. "Hail them, Now." Corzeer informed. "Yes, Hailing the Yamato" the communications officer said from the back of the bridge, it took a few seconds to form a connection. "This is the Carrier Yamato, does the Hephaestus armada acknowledge ?" Captain Magist asked, his black GA military uniform could be seen quite easily. "Yes, we hear you perfectly. You can accompany us to the intercept point.", Captain Magist looked relieved and then said: "Very well, thank you admiral." after Magist finished the last sentence, officer from the Yamato's bridge interrupted and they had a brief conversation until Magist looked back to the admiral and said with heavy heart: "Sir, my Tactical officer just informed me that a La'Fin Battle group just exited subspace and begun attack the colony, we have to jump out and defend them!", "All right, let's do it. Red alert!" Corzeer said while the red alert begun to sound trough the Triton's decks.


LASARUS SYSTEM, UNDER ATTACK BY La'Fin RAIDING PARTY

ENIGMA SECTOR, BETA QUADRANT


Three La'Fin Light cruisers were firing at the civilian listening outposts at the orbit of the planet. Few of the Civilian militia fighters had unsuccessfully tried to destroy the attacking cruisers. Several Antimatter Missiles erupted from the launchers at the back of the La'Fin cruisers, sending several remaining fighters into flying trough the air wildly. The Hephaestus Armada dropped out of Hyperspace at 100,000 km from the La'Fin raiding fleet, the La'Fin Light cruisers with their blue coil paintings begun to turn to the Hephaestus armada. Several fighter groups were scrambled to defend the carriers and the frigate. A La'Fin light carrier emerged from the side of the first light cruiser. It's side hangar bays opened and several La'Fin interceptors emerged from the inside, Admiral Corzeer directed all of the torpedo launchers in his ship to fire defensive blasts. The Screaming banshee squadron was ordered to protect the Triton and then peel off when the attack order was received, The Shadow killer squadron was ordered to watch the Triton's back in case of a Torpedo run.


F.H.N.S. TRITON

LASARUS SYSTEM, POSITION FOR ATTACK


Corzeer was looking into his tactical officer which was ordering the final launch of the fighter groups. "What's their status?" Corzeer asked . "They are waiting for us to act first, maybe we should fire!?" The Tactical officer asked with his finger ready to push the "go ahead" button. "No, not until they fire first……open an channel to their fleet" Corzeer ordered, he waited for a while until he begun to speak: "I am Admiral Dex Corzeer, CINC of the Hephaestus republic Second Fleet. Your violation of Gigerdi Alliance space is in direct violation of the Treaty of Marej. Recall your fighters, stand down your ships, and return to La'Fin space immediately." There was no answer from the La'Fin, clearly they didn't want to explain their attacks. "Order all of the fighter wings to lock weapons and fire on my mark, inform the capital ships to fire all weapons when I tell them to." Corzeer said with anger in his voice, he walked near the huge holographic tactical map being projected in front of him.


F-65 "INFILTRATOR"

EVADING ENEMY FIRE

LASARUS SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT

Agent Fergus evaded incoming La'Fin interceptor fire and pulled a "three-sixty" in front of a enemy bomber. A couple of light fighters were harassing his wingmen with missiles and small beam fire, they had no trouble on breaking trough. Fergus selected the fire linked Pulse discharge cannons from the weapons menu and ripped a light fighter in two. Then the capital ships begun to exchange fire, the Hephaestus armada was clearly trying to stop the La'Fin raiders from escaping, but a pair of heavy bombers were moving on the Frigate Yokohama. Fergus flew trough a huge exchange of fire and saw another of the automated fighters to blown apart by the enemies, "Killer two, this is Killer one. What's your status ?" Fergus asked while evading a pair plasma torpedoes fired from the triton, it took awhile for the pilot to answer…. "I'm here, what's the problem ?" asked his wingman with a crackling voice, "Attack those light fighters in coordinates 45,7b" Fergus answered. "That's a roger!" the wingman acknowledged. He could see the enemy ships Firing on the helpless transport "Havanna", it shields had clearly been taken down.


F.H.N.S. HAVANNA

TURNING TO FACE THE ENEMY ARMADA

LASARUS SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT


"Sir! We just lost the shields on the port side!" An ensign yelled to captain Falus who was rising from the floor, he had been hurt badly. Falus looked into the tactical panel and barked an order: "All Pulse cannon batteries, fire on the nearest cruiser!", "Yes, sir!" yelled the same ensign. Falus could hear another huge explosion before the whole bridge area fell with huge fires impacting on all sides. Falus died instantly along with most of the bridge crew. For a moment, the weapons on the transport stopped to fire.


F.H.N.S. TRITON

LASARUS SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT

Corzeer looked to the devastation which had been the transport "Havanna". He could hear his tactical officer reporting of a maximum hit to a enemy cruiser….but he didn't care. "Sir, two of the enemy bombers are closing in!" The Tactical officer informed, "Fire with the interceptor grid!" Corzeer yelled. Several small cannons in all sides of the heavy cruiser begun to rip the incoming bombers in shreds with their quick firing possibilities……The bombers tried to turn before it was too late, but the cannons destroyed them with ease. The Transport Havanna had been disabled, and it was floating dead in space. The Hephaestus forces had taken the first La'Fin light cruiser down, and the rest of the La'Fin were retreating to a clear zone where they could jump to subspace. Soon, the La'Fin forces jumped…..making their 6th successful hit-and-run attack. None of the enemy forces were captured or even analyzed, but the LASARUS colony was safe. The Hephaestus armada jumped to pursue the La'Fin armada, they claimed that they could trace the subspace wave the La'Fin used to complete the jump. The casualties were light on both sides, but the fact that the Hephaestus people couldn't save all of the civilians showed several gaps in their planning, the light carrier Yamato was then "attached" to the Hephaestus task force. The whole fleet engaged in to maximum burn to follow the subspace trail which the La'Fin ships were going to gather to, the GA armada was still waiting in the fleet gathering point.


G.A.S. ARCHLIGHT

ORBIT OVER PLANET 23455

THE 23455 SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT


Morliss was sitting on the command chair and waiting for the Hephaestus fleet to arrive when his communications officer suddenly yelled: "Sir, we just received word from the Hephaestus armada, and they said that a La'Fin raiding force attacked the Lasarus colony, we should go with the Hephaestus armada. With all due respect." Morliss looked to his first officer for a while until he responded with a smirk in his face: "Perhaps we should go with them, but if they get trough this system they will have a good chance to strike to densely populated sectors.", Wells backed he's captain up with a few words: "Still, the blockade in this system must hold. I stand by my Captain." "Very well, but what about the other commanders in this operation, can't we ask their opinion?" the Comm officer asked with taste of respect for the other commanders in the battle group. Morliss looked a bit annoyed to hear that a lower officer was questioning his decisions, the whole bridge crew was looking to the conversation with a maximum interest, finally Morliss answered: " I think that it's not your call to question my orders, the other battle group commanders do as I ask.", The Comm officer was a bit annoyed to begin a dumb conversation with his captain, he knew that pretty soon it was the Brig waiting for him, but he decided to have a go anyway: "But it would be more efficient to join them now, then if we could ambush them with a quick strike to their main force.", Morliss had have enough of the lieutenant's stupid questions and decided to end it with a quick word: "This is my command, and if you have an opinion about my decisions, take it up with the fleet command!", The Lieutenant was not so easily defeated as Morliss had thought, The lieutenant was very close to be put into the brig. But again he decided to have a go: "But the Armada might be in grave trouble already! , it would be a lot better if we would go and pursue the La'Fin with both full armadas!", Commander Wells stood up and said with a firm tone in his voice: "Look lieutenant Marks, one more outburst like that and I have you put into the brig for the remainder of your shift!", Wells looked into Marks' duty station while Marks walked to the command chair, Morliss was extremely annoyed to see the cocky lieutenant walk right to his chair and say something very upsetting again, Wells was about to hop from his chair and place him under arrest personally. The Lieutenant stopped right where Morliss was sitting and said: "Sorry sir, but I cannot acknowledge the order to just wait here and let our allies get crunched in the middle. I am leaving my post for somebody else to handle." Morliss was surprised to hear this from the lieutenant, Morliss nodded in approval and a couple of security officers escorted the lieutenant away. After the Lieutenant left another officer took his place. This was another voice of authority which swept trough the GA chain of command today, it was a good example of how officer's dealt with hard decisions during extreme pressure. Still, the GA armada remained in it's place waiting if the main enemy armada would try and break the blockade and enter the Aphrodite system.


F.H.N.S. YOKOHAMA

NEAR THE NEW ATLANTIS SYSTEM

ENIGMA SECTOR, BETA QUADRANT


"Mccall, Avalon, Giunta, Leon…." Captain Russo spoke the names of all of the systems, which had been taken by the La'Fin on hit and run operations. It didn't help much to hear that the Hephaestus forces were currently in pursuit of the La'Fin fleet and not their way to the gathering point. The Tactical staff in his office were waiting for the list to stop and so it did with a angry look in Captain Russo's face. "There has been rumors about a huge ace dreadnought with the La'Fin main invasion force that fires Antimatter beams like a demon from hell, I suppose that none of you have an idea about the plan to take this thing down?" , the whole group of officers begun to talk in a loud chatter about the possibilities of tactical opportunity. One of the officers stood up and asked a simple question: "Sir, I might have an idea how to the take that thing down." Russo looked to the officer with anticipation and nodded him to continue, The officer walked to Russo's left side so that he could control the crowd more easily. " First of all, we're gonna need one of their fighters captured. Then we'll fit the captured fighter with a couple of surprise gifts.", When captain Russo would normally dismissed the officer's plan, he had an odd sense that this could work.", For all he knew this might be the last chance to give the La'Fin forces a good beating. "I don't know much about that, but how are we gonna catch one of those fighters? They're fast hell and if we manage to get one of those disabled, the enemy pilot usually implodes the engines before anything can happen.", The tactical officer didn't move himself one bit. "Well, then we'll just have to try harder, shouldn't we?" The other officers really didn't have anything up against the plan, only the fact that several attempts were already made. But they again decided to go with the plan. The staff selected the "Shadow killer" squadron as the ones to attempt the capture of the enemy fighter, the squad leader was very anxious to get one of those "Things" into custody.


F-65 "INFILTRATOR"

MOVING TO INTERCEPT La'Fin PATROL

NEW ATLANTIS SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT


Agents Fer and Dergus moved their stealth fighters into position in the hyperspace "Dimension". The Tactical staff decided that it was best for the Hephaestus forces to cut their losses now and remain in the Hyperspace until the Shadow flight group would complete their mission to successfully disable an enemy fighter. The Tactical had also pinpointed the exact position in which the La'Fin forces were gathering in, they said that a huge dreadnought would be there too. The other members of the squadron were dismissed leaving the two Section 18 agents alone to complete the mission. The fleet suddenly grew smaller in the fighters view ports as the Infiltrators moved away, the both fighters engaged their Cloaking devices and moved in to more tactical positions. And so with a huge flash in the Hyperspace, the fighters exited the rift and returned to normal space, their sensors could pick up the La'Fin armada thousands of kilometers away. But that was not their main concern. The orders were to capture a live La'Fin fighter and bring it on home safely. At this point, the advanced sensors in the fighters picked up 26 light cruisers, 3 carriers, 6 heavy cruisers, and of course the deadly bulk dreadnought. Both of the Pilots had seen this kind of thing during the Lightness War and even after the war. They picked up thousands of fighters flying at the grand fleet, but they would have to lure a few of them away from the fleet and disable them all, and then call for the boarding shuttle to arrive. So, they decided to move closer right to the main armada and decloak as close to the capital ships as possible, then they would simply lure a few fighters out before the capital ships could react and then disable them from afar. The Infiltrators went to maximum burn and moved closer to the menacing armada. They passed a pair of light cruisers, until they came at a couple of light interceptors……no they were too close. They moved closer to the point of the armada, where they saw several unknown fighters. They were painted red and yellow for some odd reason, but they certainly were not there at the first engagement. They saw a pair of medium fighters breaking off from the armada and immediately followed them, it looks like this might be pulled off after all. The Fighters moved away closer to the way the Infiltrators had came, Fer and Dergus armed the fighters with EMP cannons. "Decloak and fire on my order, comply?" asked Dergus with his finger on the firing button, the medium fighters closed in on his targeting radar. "Better Decloak now!" Fer yelled while Dergus Decloaked and fired a beam of "blue green" energy at the first fighter, it was caught completely off guard by the stealthy assault. The second one figured the plan and tried escape, only to find a pair of fusion missile showed up it's rear pipe……. It seemed that nobody detected this little skirmish. Fer signaled for the shuttle, now it was the long daring wait for the boarding party. Both of fighters were taking defensive positions around the disabled one. Suddenly, the La'Fin fleet opened a "subspace point" and jumped in, and the New Atlantis system was again free of La'Fin fleets. Both of the Pilots looked in Horror to see that the Intel was completely wrong, they had thought that the Bastards would stay in New Atlantis! Now, it was just two jumps away from the 23455 system, a.k.a. the "Callisto system". The Boarding shuttle arrived along with escorts, Admiral Corzeer was shocked to hear about the quick change of plans from the La'Fin, there must be some kind of a way to stop the advancement for at least a few days.


F.H.N.S. TRITON

STANDING BY IN NEW ATLANTIS SYSTEM

NEW ATLANTIS SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT


Fer and Dergus looked in interest to the La'Fin fighter which they had brought inside of the Triton's hangar. Two Security teams were standing by on either side of the fighter, The Ship's medical officer was ready to cut trough the Cockpit and reveal the secrets inside. Fleet Admiral Corzeer was standing beside Fer and Dergus in the hangar, all of the men were silent. The Doctor broke trough the cockpits black glass with a welding beam and used a halogen light to probe inside, there was some kind of a gas inside. Finally, the security helped the alien pilot out of the cockpit. The pilot had a brown and green "flight suit" on, surely it was just "Encounter suit". The Enemy pilot was breathing heavily due to the fact that he wasn't breathing Oxygen like the Gigerdians do. Intel had theorized that the La'Fin breath Chlorine, but clearly this La'Fin pilot was not of the same species which the GA encountered at the first contact with the La'Fin This one was more Insect like, almost like a Warrior Texian, but not with the wings and the Tall figure. The group was amazed by the sight, the Security officers gave him "Bottled Chlorine" to stop him from suffocating. Then, the pilot was brought to the Medical lab for a closer "inspection", then the Technicians begun to download all of the information from the enemy fighter and begun a bigger inspection of all of the fighter's systems. The Command staff was very eager to find out about the research, while the enemy fighter was being refitted with a couple of surprise gifts. The second stop for the La'Fin fleet was the Babel System, there were minimum militia defenses there. After a few hours, the Technicians had finished with the fighter and they were ready to give a full analysis of the enemy forces. Both squad commanders, the Tactical staff, Admiral Corzeer and the remaining ship commanders were waiting in the Ready room. Everyone knew that there was going to be a battle soon, then the Tactical officer begun to speak: "All right, this is what we've found out during our little search on the fighter. The Fighter is almost similar to a Gigerdi fighter refit 2b, it's weapons are two repeating plasma cannons in the front and one missile hard point on each side of the wings, it uses some sort of chemical as it's fuel, it's computer systems were extremely hard to crack, but we did it in the end." The whole room begun to speak in loud chatter, while Corzeer raised his hand and asked with a suspicious voice: "So, I've heard that you have some kind of a plan to do with that fighter, what is it?" , The tactical officer didn't look so happy about the admiral's quick questions and decided to give him a go, "Yes, we certainly do have a plan, but the only problem is that you'll have to do some fighting first.", The whole room was now looking to the Tactical officer with a pessimistic grin, the officer decided to continue anyway: "We plan to pack that thing with antimatter bombs, and then slip it into that dreadnought and destroy it's engines, that should give the GA the time to complete their offensive fleet, don't you think?". It certainly was a daring plan , if it would work the lieutenant would be a damn commander in no time! , most of the people seemed to believe the plan. Corzeer knew where the plan was going, and he looked worried until the lieutenant continued: "As you know, the La'Fin are aware that we have one of their fighters in custody, so sending it alone to dock with the Dreadnought would attract to much attention. So, this plan needs the second fleet to create a diversion of an attack into the Dreadnought, as the enemy fighters engage our forces, we slip this rigged fighter out in the open. Then, when our forces retreat the Rigged fighter will infiltrate the fighter groups and fly inside the Dreadnought's hangar and then we'll detonate the craft along with the Antimatter bombs." This was the plan the tactical had figured, everyone knew that they were going to be out matched for the La'Fin fleet, at least 20 to 1. The La'Fin had five times more fleet than the Hephaestus in this operation, so this called to be a desperate effort. "Why not rig that fighter with a damn Planet killer? At least it would destroy the ship in one shot?" asked the Captain of the Modified corvette Weyland, the whole room had another one to think about, The Tactical officer looked to the man disbelief and then answered: "Yes it would, but mounting a planet killer inside a ship that small would be seen, and it could even more with a huge thing like that mounted in it, just like I told you this is just a effort to buy us more time.", The room was silent for a moment until the tactical officer stepped away from the front and took his place in the back row. The crowd looked to the Tactical plan for a moment before everyone embarked to their stations. The Captains and the commanders returned to their ships, Fer and Dergus were now assigned to the Torpedo run squadron. They had orders to attempt torpedo runs against the enemy cruisers and try to soften the enemy up until the GA fleet would arrive, all of it by using the Cloaking device as a Tool. The Subspace drive was considerable slower than the hyperspace drive which the Hephaestus forces were using, so it would still be about a day until the La'Fin would be in striking position. The Hephaestus forces contacted Captain Morliss and told them to break the blockade and move into the Jericho system, where the initial defense was being made. Morliss had been more interested to defend his interest of staying in the Callisto system than to be slaughtered in the Jericho. But finally Corzeer convinced him to break the Blockade and bring his forces to the desperate defense. Once there, Morliss was told about the plan, which was quite mad he thought, but decided to go with it anyway.


JERICHO SYSTEM

GA AND HEPHAESTUS NEW BLOCKADE POINT

JERICHO SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT


Waiting in line there were 2 Gigerdi MkIII class heavy cruisers, 2 Hauler MkII class transports, 4 corvettes, 2 Geffron class transport cruisers, A light carrier, 1 Delphi class heavy patrol frigate, 1 Deliverance class Light frigate, and a couple of squadrons worth of Militia "Starfighters". The whole fleet looked pretty rugged, and old, but they were the only thing which stood between the Darkness and the Light. Both of the Heavy cruisers, The Triton and The Archlight were designated as the Flagships of the fleet. The plan was laid out, the only thing they needed was to execute it. The Colonies in Jericho were evacuated as the final parts of the defense were laid out, but some of the colonists decided to stay and defend their homeland against the invasion, Commander Wells aboard the Archlight had gotten a lot better image about the Hephaestus navy than the GA media wanted to give, They had said that they were "Thieves" and "Terrorists". For a second Wells had even considered to join the Hephaestus Navy, but was stopped by thinking about his family's reaction. Morliss and Corzeer had been planning the assault for hours but everyone knew their positions now, there was no going back. Then, finally the La'Fin arrived…….. well away from the Armada, they emerged from the other side of the planet.


G.A.S. ARCHLIGHT

JERICHO SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT


"RED ALERT! RED ALERT! ALL HANDS TO BATTLE STATIONS! ENEMY SHIPS HAVE ENTERED THE SYSTEM! THIS IS NOT A DRILL! I REPEAT, THIS IS NOT A DRILL!"

Dergus was out of his bunk and in his flight suit before the alert had finished its first repetition. He dashed into the pilots' ready room and took his seat, struggling with the crowd of pilots trying to do the same thing. Things settled down quickly as they waited for Captain Morliss to finish his meeting with Fleet admiral Corzeer. A couple of minutes later, the Captain appeared. "All right, this is the situation." He stood to the side and a map of the system, centered between the GA/Hephaestus fleet and the La'Fin fleets, appeared. "The La'Fin Fleet has jumped into the system, and has taken up position here, 70 000 Km from the commercial jump point." Informed Morliss with haste. "Now, your orders are to break and attack on the light cruisers, now we'll attempt to take those battle cruisers down. Good luck out there." , The briefing room was quickly emptied when the first La'Fin scouting parties hit the cruiser group. The Triton damaged a light cruiser in the first blow when trio of bombers strafed with guns blazing.


T-65 "INFILTRATOR"

JERICHO SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT


A trio of fighters embarked from the hangar of the Triton, but no-one saw it of course…… they were ordered to stay cloaked. After the Leader trio embarked, followed a pair of cloaked "Spider- class heavy bombers" from the Secondary hangar. The Spider bombers had received an incredible shield upgrade just a few months back, and now was the time to field test them. The group of cloaked fighters which were designated as the infamous " Shadow flight" squadron, their orders were to sneak behind a pair of light cruisers and destroy them with heavy antimatter missile attacks. As always, Fer And Dergus were flying their Personal fighters, along with four other pilots flying cloaked Spider- bombers. The Battle raged on the sides when the Shadow flight moved to their targets, The Militia fighters took down one of the La'Fin light cruisers. The Triton and The Archlight were defending the corvettes on a furious attack run. A pair of Gigerdi fighters were took down like Tin foil with the La'Fin antimatter rockets. "All wings arm Missiles and cannons, fire at my order." Dergus ordered while he saw the targeting sensors taking the lock on an enemy light cruiser. The good thing was that the enemy was not aware of the cloaking device. The group accelerated right to the ship's aft and Fergus ordered with a evil smile in his face: "Shadow flight, decloak and fire at my command!", the fighter group was then silent, and Dergus ordered his wing to break and attack: " Okay, let's show them!" First, Twelve fighter scale antimatter bombs were fired from the group, until several beams of light were also fired from the fighters. All of the missiles hit their target precisely as planned, Destroying the ships engines and finally detonating it to a thousand pieces. The Morale was high , the score for the defenders were now 3 light cruisers, a heavy cruiser, and several fighters. Although, the La'Fin had hit the two GA corvettes, and a transport, the hopes were high. It was also revealed that the La'Fin battle cruisers had a trick up their sleeves, that they could fire up to twelve plasma torpedoes at the time. This had cost the lives of the personnel in the transport "Vindur", The Shadow flight group had taken it's first casualty when shadow two was crunched with a heat seeking missile, but they quickly took down several enemy fighters in return.


G.A.S. ARCHLIGHT


"Another bomber at coordinates 665, 62 . Firing main weapons!" the Tactical officer informed with another explosion wrecking the aft shields, he could hear a loud scream. The whole ship shook when another trio of Antimatter rockets penetrated the shields, One of the navigator officers had been hit badly. Captain Morliss ordered a pair torpedoes to be loaded up and ready, It seemed that the other heavy cruiser was doing a lot better. The both modified Hephaestus corvettes were doing quite well, but the battle was quickly turning up against the defenders. "Sir, aft shields at 45% percent, shall I reroute the auxiliary power?!" asked the Tactical officer while rising from the floor, "No, we must keep the weapons ready
at all times!" , another explosion shook the Archlight. "Damn it sir, we can't take this much longer!" the Tactical officer informed while the Medical personnel were evacuating the wounded to the sickbay. "Fire all loaded plasma torpedoes!" Morliss ordered while looking into the tactical holomap in front of him, the two remaining torpedoes were fired against a invading light cruiser, dropping it's shields well below 65%. The Main particle weapons fired at the light cruiser while another enemy Battle cruiser fired a salvo of 4 plasma torpedoes dropping the Archlight's shields completely down. "Sir, aft shields…. They're gone!", The Tactical officer yelled out in terror, Morliss could hear the evacuation alarm being sounded. All right, evacuate ship!" Morliss yelled. "Sir, message coming in from the Triton!" yelled the still alive communications officer. A piece of the bridge's wall fell when another enemy beam hit it's target, "On screen!" yelled Morliss while sitting down to he's command chair. "Listen, we are pulling out! Get out of there! Now Morliss!" Yelled admiral Corzeer in terror, he could see that the outer hull of the Archlight was all bright of explosions and fire. It was now just a test of time until the reactor would fail, several escape pods and shuttles left the massive starship. "I see, well start the evacuation." Morliss said grimly, he motioned with his hand to the bridge officers to abandon ship. Then, a massive pillar broke trough the floor and Morliss along with his tactical officer were left in the bridge. "Mr. Kallis, Fire main weapons!" Morliss said while the tactical viewscreen blanked by the lack of power to the internal systems, The Archlight's interceptor grid had failed, the secondary weapons gone, only the main particle distruptors were online. The Purple beams fired from their emplacements in the nose of the ship destroyed the second light cruiser about to fire more antimatter rockets, that was the final shot that the enemy cruiser would ever do. " Sir, The Reactors gone critical! We should get to the life pods….. there are only three left!" The Tactical officer yelled, Morliss had hoped to hear that from his first officer, Mr. Wells who was at the Triton coordinating fighter wing tactics, but he decided to get the hell out from there than to simply die. Both of the officers begun to move away from the destroyed bridge when the hangar bays were hit with a couple of more torpedoes, this time the bridge didn't hold…… and Morliss embraced the afterlife.


F.H.N.S TRITON

ESCAPING

JERICHO SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT


Wells and Corzeer looked horrified by the quick explosion that had been the mighty Archlight. Corzeer ordered that all of the escape pods to be retrieved, and then the captured La'Fin fighter be launched. Wells was sure that he wouldn't find his captain in any of the Pods, he knew Morliss' logic. The Hephaestus forces had taken down 5 light cruisers, 2 heavy cruisers and a single carrier, this was quite good to think about the casualties. It was now their only hope to ram the rigged enemy fighter up the dreadnought's fighter bays. When the Remains of the Hephaestus armada retreated, the fighter was launched from the Triton. It quickly fired it's afterburners and met with group of ten La'Fin fighters still in pursuit of a single GA fighter. The rigged fighter was being remotely controlled from the Triton, now it was moving to the Dreadnought. There were dozens of fighters still around, The La'Fin armada looked almost invincible. Then, it was the time to dock aboard the leader Dreadnought. It's huge antimatter guns could be seen in the front and the back. There were some unknown fighters moving near the docking bay. It was sure that they were some kind of personal fighters of the La'Fin wing commanders. As The La'Fin slowly gave up their pursuit. The rigged fighter moved to the docking bay. The Fighter's sensors detected at least 2300 small fighters parked to the Decks and Docking cones, Corzeer ordered that the lieutenant could push the button anytime he wanted. As The Docking cones took the control of the Rigged fighter, The Lieutenant slowly moved his finger to the button and……. Pressed it!! The Huge Explosion shook the Whole dreadnought, destroying several decks and rupturing Bulkheads. The Primary Docking bays were all destroyed in a great white flash of pain and heat. As the remaining La'Fin pursuers saw the fate of their Dreadnought, They turned away and used their remaining afterburners to protect their dreadnought. At first, many of the La'Fin crewmen and soldiers thought that it was some kind of an accident down in the Cargo hangar, but it was soon discovered that the Hephaestus people had rigged one of their stolen fighters and had hideously destroyed a part of their dreadnought. The La'Fin had no other way to just wait until the most damaged areas of the ship would be repaired without the help of a dry dock, and it would take days……..Even months. The Victory aboard the Triton was short lived, as they knew that the casualties were too high on the Hephaestus side. It looked like they had done their part and stopped the Advance for a few days. Now GA would have more than enough time to prepare for the inevitable. Corzeer looked to Wells who had just confirmed that his captain had truly been killed, he was sad at the moment. "We did a good job, now let's see how are the GA boys going to handle it." Corzeer said with a grim hope in his voice.


G.A.S. VICTORIOUS, BRIDGE

THE GILMORE SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT

Standing at the front of the bridge, Fleet Admiral Mal Kiron smiled as the last Texian cruiser made the jump into the System. The GA Heavy cruisers G.A.S. McKinley, Thanatos, Rampant , Valley Forge, and the still-unfinished Valencia MkI-class Medium cruiser Akira, each made up a task force of battle groups assembled from the First, Third, Seventh, and Fourteenth Fleets. Being assigned to patrol the Gilmore System in anticipation of the arrival of the La'Fin fleet, the arriving Bacterian Navy assistance bolstered the Aphrodite blockade significantly. The Hephaestus fleet in-system a grand total of three cruisers, four Hauler-class heavy transports, two frigates, four corvettes and one Syphoon-class Light carrier. Thirty seconds later, eight Three Suns class cruisers and Bacterian support ships crossed the threshold of the Nexus Drive, of the duo could only be one vessel. "It's the ISA, sir!" exclaimed Lieutenant Valez from her station. "The I.S.A Thunder bear... and the Foxfire."The Helix-class Thunder Bear... And its Sister ship the Foxfire, along with a small Inter-Stellar alliance armada was waiting for a connection. "Patch me through to the Foxfire , Roles." Kiron's grin widened as Commander Teder Roles made it so. "Balmorra, you out there?" Kiron turned to see the holographically projected image of President Nix Balmorra materialize. "Admiral Kiron... good to see you,sir." "And good to see you, son." Kiron had Been Nix's instructor in the GA Academy many years before the Second Civil war where Nix saved GP from being destroyed by the Mad President Rubek, after that the Bacterians wanted Nix to became the president of the powerful Inter-Stellar alliance, and that changed his life forever. "Oh, hell, you should know better than that by now call me Mal." Kiron said with a smile. "All right, Mal. You got it." Nix smiled, if grudgingly. "Needless to say, the Inter-Stellar Alliance has come to assist, The Bacterians wanted to also say Hello and decided to sent a couple of these new Namgron MkIIIs with us, Courtesy of their Humble Emperor Namgron." Nix said. You see, The Bacterians and us are working together to defend all of the IPA member worlds, even the very large states are going to need our help." Nix continued while a pair of New Bacterian Battle Drones swooped to both sides of the Huge Heavy cruiser, The Victorious. The IPA And the Bacterian Military can only spare the two Namgron MkIIIs, but hopefully we won't run into anything we can't handle. Ramuh and the FG-401 "Protectors" fighter wing, haven't failed me yet." "Who's in command of the Thunder bear?" Asked Kiron "That would be my Son Probo, He is a Captain as well." Nix replied. "Good to see him do the commanding for once, eh? Send Namgron GA's thanks." Mal said with anticipation. "I'll do that. What's the game plan?" Mal Kiron shrugged. "Strategic Command is in the process of recalling 45 percent of all Forces in the GA military fleets to the defense of Beta Quadrant... We're supposed to jump to the Aphrodite system to gather with the GA superbase there, and ambush the remaining La'Fin". Mal informed the whole fleet with the plan he had gotten from the Fleet command, They knew that the La'Fin Intelligence wasn't aware of the huge Superbase situated in Aphrodite. But instead would try to break trough the Aphrodite system without fear, that's when the unified GA armada would strike and disable their invasion effort. This plan was sure to work due to the fact that the La'Fin could not know about the GA fleet capabilities with just the quick scouting they had done. Soon the fleet jumped away from the Gilmore system which was just one jump away from Aphrodite. Mal knew that he could possibly stop the Invasion, but the only wild card was that the La'Fin did not knew about the Superbase and would think that Aphrodite would be just another lightly defended system. The GA counterattack fleet had been gathered mainly from GP, Fredaxsis, Waldrip, Brunet, and Tyril systems. They were all systems near Gigerdi Prime, meaning that these ships were the most advanced ships in the fleet. After all, these ships were gathered from Alpha quadrant. Mal had commanded numerous Fleet engagements trough the years, so he had experience all right, Mal wasn't just a regular fleet admiral. Mal served as the Assistant to the Military joint chiefs of-staff which had originally briefed him about the Mission along with the supervision of President Dalleer himself. Again Mal returned to his command chair, he knew that soon he would have to see another massacre all over again. The Screams, Wounded people, Exploding ships, all that was a part of his life for sixteen years, and he didn't see no need to it to stop. When he had heard about the Hephaestus republic's involvement in the campaign, he had first hesitated. After all they had fought over the control of the Whole Hephaestus system a couple of months ago, and the worst part was that he had been working with the Strategic command to plan the assault on the innocent Hephaestans and their legally elected government. The worst part was that he knew Admiral Morliss, and that they had sometimes talked during some meetings or greater holidays. At first, he had resented the responsibility he had been issued to suppress another rebellious colony world which just wanted to remain independent, but he had seen so many of his friends killed two years ago in the Lightness war which had cost the GA almost half of it's fleets. He had been surprised about the way the Hephaestus had dealt with the La'Fin, Stealth tactics had been everything that stood between Victory and Utter destruction.
After a few minutes the Fleets were mobilized to three separate strike groups, The first group Led by the Heavy cruiser Victorious, the Second group led by the Carrier Sheffield, and then there were the last group Led by Nix Balmorra and the Medium cruiser Fox fire. The Whole GA Armada consisted of Eighteen Heavy cruisers, Four Gigerdi MkII Medium cruisers, Seven-Hyperion class Light cruisers, Eight Omega Class Destroyers, Seven Deliverance Class frigates, Three Syphoon class Light carriers, One Valencia MkI class Medium cruiser, three Valencia MkII class cruisers, Six light transports, Five Heavy transports, 21 Olympia class Corvettes, And Five old Washington class Dreadnoughts. The Fleet had to use regular Warp, Hyperspace, Travel due to the fact that the carriers for example were not equipped with the Nexus drive components instead of the MkIII Heavy cruisers and Valencias. The Bacterian Ships were assigned as an escort force for the seven small three Suns class light cruisers which were the backbone of the Inter-Stellar Alliance defense fleets. The fleet jumped away from the Gilmore system and moved to jump space.


APHRODITE SUPERBASE,

THE APHRODITE SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT


Major General Waros looked trough the view ports of the bridge area of the 7 Km wide superbase situated on the steady orbit over planet Aphrodite I. The Huge Superbase had been constructed seven years ago, it took almost 3,6 years to complete the whole station along with the necessary adjustments for the final design. Waros had been the Leader of the Garrison fleet in Aphrodite for a year after he successfully defended the whole system against a whole Lightness war fleet until the colony could be evacuated. There were four of these Superbases or " Ma Starbases" made, one in every quadrant the GA had presence in. He had never met his fellow "Superbase commanders", perhaps due to the fact that he had never had no respect for the people who made other people do their work and then take the credit for it. The Invasion of Beta quadrant from the La'Fin had enraged the man , he vowed to stop them in Aphrodite no matter what the cost. The Battle groups protecting the Superbase were now ordered to preliminary patrols until the GA "relief" forces would arrive. Waros had seven colonized planets in the systems, six major colonies, and twenty-four smaller outposts, to protect. He knew that the La'Fin would have no change of getting from the system alive, not even with some big dreadnoughts. So it was just a good training exercise for the Aphrodite forces in system, Waros had wanted to finally participate in an Massive fleet battle with the Legendary Leaders Balmorra, and Kiron.
"Sir, Transmission coming from the GA armada, shall I patch it trough?" asked the Comm officer with firmness in his voice, Waros looked to the back wall, but acknowledged the request anyway. "Must be the Brass, let's hear it." Waros said with the gaze ready to salute Fleet admiral Kiros or President Balmorra, or both. The Holographic display projected the Image of Hephaestus fleet Admiral Corzeer, At first he looked surprised to see a Hephaestan Military officer using an GA subspace relay with a false identification code. Waros remembered seeing the Man's face a couple of month ago in the face of the News when the whole Hephaestus trouble begun. "Who are you? Identify yourself?!" Waros said with enraged voice. He had heard about the DHR using an similar method of tricking the Hemmoian Federation to relay messages trough their subspace relays, after all the DHR was founded by one of the best Hackers in the Galaxy. The Hephaestus republic had just recently joined the DHR and received all of their tricks and equipment from them. "I Am Fleet admiral Feres Corzeer from the Free republic of Hephaestus, and I have some useful information regarding the La'Fin fleet movements.", The man replied with an easy confidence. "I see, you do realize that it is a very serious offense to use GA military subspace codes for personal use and relaying false orders.", Corzeer looked pretty damn annoyed to hear something like that from an fellow commander, but he remained calm. "As you may know, we destroyed the primary fighter bays of that Dreadnought of theirs, but now we are getting reports that they are using all four of the main cargo hangars as the fighter bays." Corzeer said with a serious voice, " I see, we'll get this information to the fleet command as soon as possible, but you should not be using the GA military subspace relays." Waros suggested with voice full of authority. "One of my men has something to tell you, I'll put him on." Corzeer said. "My name is Fergus Dloe, VF-14 'shadow killer Squadron. You, sir, do not know me, though I am a great admirer of your position in the GA military.", Well, flattery earned him Waros' attention. "Tell me what's on your mind, son.", "That La'Fin fleet we're looking at right now... together, we can take it. That dreadnought out there... the antimatter attack messed it up pretty bad in Jericho-nearly crippled it entirely-and they couldn't have done too much in the time since to repair it. A couple surgical strikes on its weakened front and it should be history." Fergus said with a slight anticipation in his voice, Waros looked to the tactical officer who was analyzing the reports of the La'Fin fleet movements. "Thank you soldier, I hope this will prove useful." Waros said while Fergus saluted him with the standard gesture of respect, more or less.
"Sir, we're getting a report from the Cruiser Yorktown, they say that a pair of La'Fin cruisers have exited subspace and are moving this way with extreme speed, no sign of that dreadnought yet." The Tactical officer reported, Waros looked relieved. "Good, inform the fighter bays to scramble all pilots and launch A.S.A.P.!" Waros said with a good tactical advantage in mind. "If you ask me, sir, this looks like the start of an old-fashioned shit kicking contest," interjected Commander Mans, a human under his command. Waros took his command chair. "Give the McKinley, Hero, Nagano, and Corsair the green light to release their fighter squadrons, and tell Militia vessels to do the same." He glanced at Colonel Meins, the Superbases's Wing commander, who currently stood at attention in anticipation of the inevitable order. "See that the squadron commanders have our fighters deployed A.S.A.P." The superbase's' 800 fighters in four fighter wings were sure to do some damage. "Yes sir." Meins turned for the lift. Waros gave a look at Mans. "A shit kicking contest, is it, Commander? Let's get kicking."


LRS FRE'DAK

THE APHRODITE SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT


Baron Helaar smiled as the battle unfolded. He had expected the Gigerdian fleet to rally around their base, where the La'Fin fleet would be able to corner them and destroy their fleet in detail. He hadn't thought that they would leave their base open to attack so that they could engage the fleet without the interference of the Pol'lar (the La'Fin cruiser flagship)and Havanh ras strok( the feared dreadnought). Oh well, if they were willing to let their base die, he wouldn't argue with them. "Commander Malli'sh, how long until we are within range of their base?" The Commander turned to face him. "Ten minutes. Baron Thokkarh has suggested that we destroy the base with an antimatter missile prepared from the Dreadnought . He says that with the power of the missile, only one will be needed.", Finally the La'Fin fleet had been able to corner the GA, or so they thought at least. The Light cruiser Fre'Dak was the secondary flagship of the La'Fin fleet, and Baron Helaar as it's commander. " It seems that this system has been left completely without fleet assistance, my Baron." Said his second in command defiantly. "Very well, inform the main fleet to jump into the system at once!" Helaar said while looking to the pair of GA cruisers firing their weapons on some La'Fin scout fighters. Moments later, the La'Fin fleet jumped into the system, now consisting of 21 light cruisers, four battle cruisers, 2 light carriers and the feared dreadnought. And slowly the Ships begun to mass to the Superbase in the horizon, they met continues resistance from the GA forces in the system.


G.A.S. YORKTOWN

ATTACKING TO A La'Fin CARRIER

APHRODITE SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT


Captain Dredan was sitting steadily in the bridge while hearing that another pulse cannon had been destroyed by yet another Antimatter rocket, after all he had destroyed a couple of light fighters on their way to the Destroyer Corsair and it's interceptor escorts. "What our shield status?" asked Dredan with a grin on his face, "Aft and front shields at 82 percent sir, port and starboard side shields at maximum." his tactical officer nodded while preparing for another salvo of plasma torpedoes being fired from the Yorktown's launchers. "Sir, gunnery control reported that two plasma torpedoes are ready to be fired, target?" the Tactical officer said while monitoring the communication channels. " Fire them on that cruiser which is attempting to pursue us, target their life support systems." Dredan answered with a more serious tone in his voice, " The Lightness bastards didn't get me, and you won't either." Dredan said quietly. A second later, a pair of Plasma torpedoes were fired right to the pursuing light cruiser, damaging it's life supports and making it's shields tremble and flick while getting numerous big and small hits from the Yorktown's main guns and attacking fighters. The La'Fin dreadnought was still kilometers away from the Yorktown and the Destroyer Corsair, there were eleven light cruisers positioned around it along with two battle cruisers at it's sides. The last two Battle cruisers had jumped to the other side of the planet and were hoping to ambush the Battle group led by the Yorktown. The Carrier attacked by the Yorktown and the Corsair was already burning and escape pods were being launched, the small defense turrets in the carrier had been able to damage some of the attacking fighters which had ripped parts out of it's outer hull with the heavy torpedo attacks up it's hull. The Yorktown maneuvered away from a pair of antimatter rockets fired from a nearby La'Fin light cruiser. As the Carrier incinerated to a thousand pieces, the Corsair finally destroyed it with a well aimed shot from it's front particle beams. As the GA fleet was tangling with the La'Fin scout group, the superbases fighter squadrons were racing towards the secondary defense battle group near the orbit of the third planet. General Waros had ordered that the main particle distruptors would be positioned to fire when the dreadnought would be in maximum firing range. It would take about ten minutes for it to reach it at it's top speed.


APHRODITE SUPERBASE

APHRODITE SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT


"I Want those plasma torpedoes to be fired as the main wave before the main particle disrupt attack." Waros ordered, he could see how the Yorktown and the Corsair were delivering steady damage to the La'Fin capital ships, but were quickly losing their shields too. "Sir, something weird is coming from the other side of the third planet." The Tactical officer reported, " Scan it, now!" Waros replied. "It seems that there seems to be something in there that looks pretty damn much like a pair La'Fin BATTLE CRUISERS!!!" The Tactical officer Yelled in panic. "MY GOD! THEY HAVE BEEN LURED INTO A TRAP!, TELL THEM TO GET OUT FROM THERE!!!!!" Waros yelled to his communications officer. He could see that the Yorktown could not evade the huge torpedo attack it was about to get from the Battle cruisers, the Corsair might actually have the chance.


G.A.S. YORKTOWN

EVADING ENEMY FIRE

APHRODITE SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT


Captain Dredan had seen the oncoming battle cruisers, he should have known that the La'Fin were just tangling along with him until the Battle cruisers could come out from the orbit. Dredan yelled commands of abandoning the ship as a salvo of twenty four plasma torpedoes were fired against the cruiser. When the first five hit, Dredan had already collapsed to the floor. All of the escorting fighters had been destroyed by the sneak attack and he knew that letting the La'Fin go would cost them all greatly so he decided to stop them once and for all. Unfortunately the rest of the torpedoes hit as the final disrupter beam hit a lone La'Fin fighter. The Yorktown imploded right before the very eyes of General Waros. The Corsair was destroyed by the attack also. The La'Fin fleet was now ready to battle it out with the secondary battle group. Several GA fighters fled the wreckage of the former heavy cruiser Yorktown and the Destroyer Corsair. Sounds of battle, how many more letters would Waros have to write today…………


G.A.S NAGANO

POSITIONING ITSELF FOR THE ATTACK

APHRODITE SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT


"So we lost the Yorktown, well." Captain Stens said while looking to the tactical screen, he could have not believe the luck he got. "Fire with main guns!" he ordered. The white blast from the main pulse cannons of the heavy cruiser swept trough a couple of unwanted La'Fin fighters, but that was all they could from this range. "Very well, inform the bomber groups to cloak and wait for my signal" Stens said with a firm voice, the whole crew seemed confident for his plan. The another escorting cruiser, the Mc Kinley was ready to fire it's plasma torpedoes. "Tell the Mckinley to fire it's plasma torpedoes on the nearest cruiser." Stens ordered. The Mckinley's captain selected the nearest and the mostly damaged enemy cruiser within the optimal firing range, and fired all of the plasma torpedoes to it's already damaged hull and destroyed, this seemed to anger the La'Fin even more. Finally, the GA seemed to be able to defend themselves with minimal forces. The Intel had reported that the La'Fin had lost at least two full fighter classes and now were attacking with a mix of medium fighters and bombers. Another La'Fin cruiser was crippled by the offensive fire of the Nagano and The Mckinley, The Dreadnought had already reached the second planet and was firing with it's antimatter guns to the planet's surface, perhaps to cut their losses and to anger the Gigerdians to a hasty attack. But no, Waros had received orders from the planetary governor at the first planet to not engage the Dreadnought until the GA relief forces would arrive. He knew that the civilian body count had already been counted to a rising 23,000. But he could not disobey orders, especially when they came from the provisional government. As the final beams of energy were fired from the Dreadnought, Waros looked to see that his time had came. Calmly he ordered that the front weapons be fired. As the millions of particle disrupters, plasma torpedoes, and pulse cannons fired, the dreadnought's shields seemed to fail………but it was not that what got him worried. As the Remaining La'Fin ships begun furiously attack the Superbase with insane strafing runs and ramming tactics, still the dreadnought had gotten light damage. It looked that the La'Fin armada was now down to seven light cruisers, one carrier, two battle cruisers, and the dreadnought. The Superbase defended itself valiantly, letting no ships trough. The Nagano along with the Mckinley were both giving a hard time to a pair light cruisers just near the starbase. The Nagano had suffered severe damage to it's engines and aft shields but was still in the fight. The Mckinley was outmaneuvering the enemy fire just well, and had nuked seven bombers attempting to attack the Nagano even with it's interceptor grid down. Just as it looked that the dreadnought might finally get the superbase, the Cavalry arrived.


I.A.S. FOXFIRE

APHRODITE SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT


" This Nix balmorra to the Super base , we are here to assist" Nix said calmly while his Bacterian second in command ordered the fighter groups to be launched. Seconds later General Waros replied: " Good that you are, just get that dreadnought off our backs", As the quicker vessels begun to intercept the incoming fire, the GA heavy cruisers destroyed the Dreadnoughts last remaining fighter wings. The IPA Three sun's class ships were pursuing a pair of cruisers attempting to leave the area, and destroyed them. Kiron's forces flanked the dreadnought and delivered heavy losses to the bridge section of the ship, but not without a cost. Five heavy cruisers, six corvettes, and 1 MkII medium cruiser had been lost.


G.A.S. VICTORIOUS

APHRODITE SYSTEM, BETA QUADRANT


Another Plasma torpedo hit the Dreadnought taking a piece of it's hull. Kiron smiled while looking at another of the La'Fin cruisers explode, but he didn't go all crazy when hearing that the La'Fin were slowly beginning to lose. The Tactical registered two remaining La'Fin cruisers and a single carrier left along with the dreadnought. The GA fleet had inflicted more damage than received, and the Carrier Sheffield had already launched shuttles to assist in the evacuation of the Badly damaged cruiser, The Folksfrie. The Victorious destroyed the final light cruiser with it's main guns, and the battle had finally ended. The only problem was that the Huge dreadnought had fled, it's engines had gone critical and most of it's crew were dead but it used it's last reactor power to make the jump to the dimensional gate where it came from. The whole Aphrodite system was a mess, but the Inter-Stellar Alliance officials helped to recover the civilians from the ruins of the colony.
It was over, but again the Gigerdians had stood vigilant against a sneak attack of even this size. Everyone knew that the GA's boldest defenders would get a medal or even a promotion out of their heroic efforts. President Balmorra had returned back to the Inter-Stellar HQ for an important seminar. General Mal Kiron had done his job once again, regardless the odds, or the enemy.


EPILOGUE


G.A.S. VICTORIOUS

LEAVING APHRODITE

APHRODITE SYSTEM, THE BETA QUADRANT JUMP POINT


Kiron Was sitting in his ready room's chair and reviewing the battle records, it looked a hell of a lot better than he had expected. The La'Fin would be never trusted again, not by anyone. And that suited him just fine, getting them away from GA territories had been enough for the whole damn Beta quadrant fleet. Too bad that Grand admiral Mad Gigerdi Junior could not make it to the defense, but he had heard that he had some kind of special diplomatic duties to attend to. Commander Easily stepped into the ready room and coughed respectfully, Kiron looked to the man and asked with firm tone in his voice: "So, I hope that the repairs are proceeding well, Mr. Eisley?" "Yes, they are. But I just received word from the Fleet command." Eisley said with equal firm voice. "And what were the orders?" asked Kiron. "At first, President Dalleer sends his regards, and secondly……. We have been recalled to the Interplanetary Alliance border."


THE END