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Authadeia

The Authadeia is Homeworld universe story taking place in 75 AHL.
The story begins when Captain of old Vengeance-class Assault Frigate arrives to deep-space starport where he picks yet another client, the client who will bring troubles to each one onboard the ship.

TouchdownEdit

The old, silver-gray painted Vengeance-class Assault Frigate named The Authadeia exited from a glowing blue hyperspace window. In front of the ship emerged the large Hiigaran starport, which had become immensely popular when the Somtaaw expanded their mining operation on shreds of the Nebulae in proximity to the station. Since then, many private companies more or less related to Hiigarans and their allies began to make business there, by selling food, entertainment and other... more or less legal goods. Despite the often police inspections, this place is known around the whole sector for its criminal activities... or rather, for the "oppressed criminal element," as officials prefer to say.

The Authadeia slowly moved towards dock. Blue light filled the bridge. The Captain was standing just a few centimeters in front of the large window, watching for something inside the dock.
- Right thrusters, full power for half a second
- Aye aye sir - replied the navigation officer
The ship gently touched the ground, and the boarding ramp was attached to the airlock of The Authadeia. The captain left the ship through it and moved towards the local canteen. Everything around was gray or black, covered by dirt, smoke or whatever was out there. The station was far from its former glory, when everything was brand new, white or blue. However it wasn't anything unusual - it was in any case only one of dozens such stations owned by Somtaaw, and this one was far enough from the inner rim to be easily forgotten by their Sa's. Inside the canteen, the Captain sat in an appointed place where he spent the next few minutes wondering what dangers might come with coming mission. After a few minutes, a hooded person came by and put cash on a table. The Captain hid everything in the pocket of his overcoat, kindly showing the hooded person the way towards the dock. Both of them slowly walked into the ship, trying not to be seen by the Police, or the criminals.

When finally the airlock closed behind them, the Captain saw that his client had a silver suitcase. He slowly looked upon each detail of his outfit, the shoes... the suitcase... the belt... the hood...
- Jeremy will show you your quarters. There you will also find the plans of the ship... the areas of the ship where you MAY enter during your journey. - he told and looked firmly on the officer - Trespassing will be punished by death.
The Client nodded and followed the Petty Officer. The Captain stood in place for a moment looking at the way his client walked away...

StealthEdit

- Captain?
- Yes?
- May I speak freely?
- What's wrong Jeremy?
- This... client... I smell troubles... nobody hires a frigate to bring him from some remote mining station on the edge of "nowhere" nebula to the Hiigara... nobody on such station should have even half of the money he pays...
- I know... something is wrong... but as long as we are in no danger we should focus on our regular duties, understood?
- Yes sir
The Captain looked as his officer left the room. After few moments of looking at the glowing hyperspace behind the window, he silently stood up and exited from his cabin.

The room of the client was located on starboard. It had no windows, as almost all rooms onboard the Vengeance-class Frigates. It was spartan, with one bed, a metal table, and a quite comfortable chair next to it. The Captain knew the layout fairy well - it was similar to over twenty other quarters for guests and clients onboard. He knocked at the doors, and after a second in front of him was standing the client. He was wearing his robes, the one he came in onboard, his face was covered by a hood, and he was reaching only to Captain's shoulders
- It's dinner time. Follow me, please
- Thank you
The Captain frozen when he heard the her voice.
"A girl... the client is a girl... but how..." Captain had dozens of thoughts in mind.
- Captain?
- This way

The Captain was truly astonished... she sounded like a teenager, and that was nothing he would expect in such place. How could a girl get on that station? How could she... so young... survive there? How did she assembled all that money?
Yet none of them really matter... it was a rule amongst private transport companies - never ask for things you do not need to know. This rule was important especially when you made quite illegal missions, as right now.
All the way to the mess hall none of them spoke even single word. When they finally reached the room, Captain showed her where the food was given. She took her portion and sat in the corner at table not showing her face, nor saying even a single word to anyone.
The Captain was sitting in another corner of the room, in his usual place, eating some meat and watching her from distance. "She is trying to hide her personality as much as possible... maybe thanks to this she had no troubles on station... nobody knew what a vulnerable and precious target she was"

Jeremy waited a few seconds more and then followed the client. He watched her carefully as she was walking along the long straight corridor. There was nothing suspicious, nothing eye-catching, yet he felt troubles in her presence, something was wrong, yet he couldn't find what. Finally they reached client's quarter. Jeremy stood behind the corner listening to the click of button, then as doors opened...
- AAAAAAAA!
He ran out of corner and saw as client was struggling with some man with long silver knife. Almost unconsciously, he pulled a pistol from his holster and fired two bullets along the laser sight, straight into the back of the aggressor. The client instantly drew out from below dead body. Then Jeremy saw her face for the first time... - What the...
The girl shook down some dust of her robe, risen and took the knife of assassin
- Thanks
- How did he come here?
- Let me speak with the Captain
Jeremy saw her deep blue eyes, like none he ever seen before. After a second or two he pulled out his intercom and hailed the bridge

QuestionsEdit

She behaved as experienced warrior, without any hesitation, fear; not revealing even single emotion. Yet she was just a girl, about twenty years old, with amazing eyes and delicate skin, sitting close to the Captain with the knife in her hands. In the room there was also the executive officer, standing next to the door, he was staring at her from distance, full of amazement.
- That's the knife of the assassin group hired by the Taiidan Imperialist Faction. There can be a few more of them onboard, but usually they work on their own. It's easier to infiltrate the target then. I ask you to help me... check the ship, set the guards
The Captain took the knife and looked carefully on the Taiidan emblem burnt on the blade.
- Why do they hunt for you?
- It's not your concern, nor would it be useful for accomplishing your mission - bringing me to the Hiigara
- Are there any more "surprises" I should know about?
- I think not... I hope not...
The Captain looked on the clock above the window
- In 30 minutes we end this jump, then fifteen minutes till hyperdrive is charged again and we make the next jump. Your hopes aren't enough. We'll have more assassins or not?
- Yes, I think yes. A frigate or two
- Eh... this was too easy to be true... - Captain looked towards his XO - Van, set the guards on core systems, gather security teams to check the ship, deck by deck, for now we stay on green alert not to alert our "guests", but on 5 minutes before the exit I want red alert and everyone on battle stations
- Yes sir!
Van left the room when the Captain walked to the window, all was quiet for a moment as he stared the hyperspace
- Who are you to put my men at risk?
The girl left her robe on a chair and walked closer to him looking behind the window
- Who are you?
- My name's Kate, that's all I can say
- Are you Hiigaran? Or Republican? Or who?
- Hiigaran... as you are
Captain tried to hold the reaction, yet unsuccessfully
- Yes... I know who you are, how you left the Navy after that battle, how you found your place to escape... this ship is your hideout from the world
- Who the hell are you?! Fleet intel? Or my former 'Sa spy?
- Neither this nor that... I just want to get to the Hiigara
- You know well that we don't stand a chance against two Ion Cannon Frigates, don't you?
- Yes, but there won't be any... one should be the frigate able to extract me... my body and the assassin from the ship, and another one would be escort, likely some type of assault frigate
- Stay here, magnetically sealed doors should make you safe here. I must get on the bridge
Kate nodded and sat in meditation position looking all the time at the hyperspace in front of the ship. The Captain's room was in the top tower of the ship, very close to the bridge itself, so he didn't need to get there right now, but he didn't want to talk now with anyone. The bridge might be not most calm place on the ship, but surely he could relax there and be sure everything will go well while he had time to think over the situation.

BridgeEdit

- Captain, we should give this "client" to whoever comes for her. This money isn't worth risking the life of anyone of the crew.
- Van, you know more than anyone that we need this money to pay the ransom
- Yes, but if we'll die then there won't be anyone to pay it
- Well, that's what for we have those military-grade Kinetic Burst Cannons - to stay alive and strike back
- Two frigates... sir, with all due respect, Authadeia's armour survived many trials during it's 60 years of service, but after all that time it won't match to modern Taiidan Ion Beams. Not for fifteen minutes without any support
- I hope you are wrong... but if we will manage to hold all that time we'll have money to get him out there, and with him we'll get enough crystals to get to retirement
- Dead men don't need crystals

The intercom blinked twice before the Captain pressed the button
- Captain here
- Captain, we'll have trouble
He felt a cold wave creeping up his spine in the moment Kate said "trouble"
- What's wrong
- Qwaar-Jet... Qwaar-Jet awaits us
- What?! But how?
- It's not best moment to explain
Captain looked on the clock - in 1 minute there were about to end hyperjump. Red alert was already called, everyone was ready, so there wasn't much to do now.
- Van, call few officers to airlock corridor, we'll have guests to welcome
- Aye aye, sir!
- Kate, stay in your room
- But... you can't...
- I won't, stay calm. Take the mass driver from below the bed. You know how to use it?
- Yes, of course
The Captain still couldn't understand how this girl knew so much about military, ships... or weapons. Still this was no time to ask, it was time to act.

The Qwaar-JetEdit

The Captain was sitting on his chair, observing the clock. It was less than one minute until they ended the jump, and probably their lives. At this time, this last moment, he had doubts. No Captain should have doubts when it comes to put lives of the crew on a stake. Yet it was the thing he had to do, not only because of the money. Money could let his crew finally rest after all those battles, risky businesses, months spent looking for things that weren't there... Yet for him it wouldn't be retirement, the Captain never wanted to retire, he wanted to spend his life in active way, yet he couldn't after he was banished from Navy... but this battle, the battle which turned into massacre, when every friend of his died, when he lost all the people he knew since birth... this battle caused he couldn't do what his heart led him to. Therefore, for him this money would be just the way to get a new ship, or introduce more upgrades to the current one.
Yet... this girl, there was something special in her. He felt it... almost as if he was again onboard the "Narraka", pride of his Kiith fleet, and look into eyes of his dear friend just before fire engulfed her. He couldn't let it happen again, let her die when it was in his power and responsibility to protect her.

The Captain focused his attention on the view from beyond the window when the hyperspace window moved toward the Bridge and the ship exited from hyperspace.

Moreover, here it was, Qwaar-Jet-class Heavy Cruiser, almost half-kilometer long, the pride of the Taiidan Empire, and later on, the ship that brought fear to the systems attacked by Imperialists. This single unit could stop a strike group, or command ship about twice as big. Its weapons were still more than a match to any frigate, including most modern Hiigaran ships.

- Captain, they are hailing us!
The Captain nodded to the navigation officer and then heard the voice of an old, astute man
- This is Imperial cruiser Evocarti, surrender yourself and your life will be spared
- This is the Captain of private frigate Authadeia. We've found a dead person wearing Imperial markings and we are ready to return the body. Please assign dock space
It was difficult to stand the following moments of silence, but if they wouldn't buy this story... then likely, everyone would be dead in the matter of seconds
- Prepare to receive investigation team
Channel closed. So far, the plan was going in good direction.


     Onboard Evocarti...
The Commodore stood in front of riflemen in standard boarding combat suits. Each had small rife, two pistols and hermetic suits which could provide air for only 5 minutes, but didn't restrict the movement of the soldier. Imperialists developed such sets especially for ship boarding, and since Qwaar-Jets was equipped in a docking sleeve such sets were always onboard ship in number of 50+
- This is a standard mission - break onboard the ship, search all rooms, find the subject, take it in captivity. If you encounter any resistance - fire at will.
- Sir, yes sir!
- Prepare for the mission, soldiers. You start in 3 minutes
The Commodore left the room and moved back to the bridge.

EnemiesEdit

The Authadeia slowly glided towards docking sleeve. The Executive officer was sitting in his chair watching how the forward beam weapons slowly moved along the Authadeia, then the forward thrusters slowed it down and finally the sleeve attached to the "neck", part of ship just below the bridge itself, where secondary airlock was located. Docking went smoothly, but it hasn’t calmed the XO at all. He was still afraid of this power. During his entire career, he had seen only two Qwaar-Jets before - each time they slaughtered planetary fleets. Of course there were many more powerful ships in the galaxy, but this was the only Super Capital he ever had seen in a combat. Likely the main source of his fears was his lack of experience, he served most of his life on freighters, not real warships such as the Vengeance-class, but on the other hand this was the reason why he came to serve on this ship - to take part in real battles.

The Captain stood in front of airlock doors when they opened. The Imperialist officer came through the airlock
-Were is she?
-Welcome onboard the Authadeia. The body is in this room - The Captain discreetly showed the doors at the end of corridor - but as far as I know, he is male.
-Where is the girl? Where is Katherine Soban'Sa? - The Imperialist officer become angrier every second, but the Captain maintained composure.
-There is no such person here
-Hiigaran lies! - the officer made a sign to the person in the docking sleeve, and a few moments later, several armed people walked towards them
-What... stop! - The Captain's officers pulled out his pistols and aimed at the Imperialists
-Where is she! Tell me! Now! - the troopers were already in the room aiming at the officers. The Captain had doors behind him, so he could hide behind them and later on get from that room to the bridge, but he couldn't do this when his man would certainly die.
-She... she is in the engineering section. This way.
One of troopers put his gun to the Captain's head, and they went towards back of the ship.

Jeremy ran to the fire-brigade room, closed the doors behind him and connected with XO via the intercom.
-Sir, they got the Captain...
-WHAT?
-...requesting permission to run emergency security protocol one
-Permission granted
Jeremy typed the code into the computer

They were closer and closer to the stern side of the ship, and still nothing happened. The Captain knew well the opinion of the Imperialists and that they would likely kill him if they didn't find the girl there.
Finally red lights glowed and in a second fire, sprinklers flooded everyone in room with water. The Captain lied down, and a moment later autoguns moved down from covers in a ceiling, no one could see nor hear them because of the water, nor could they hear when they began to fire at Imperialists. Using long-range infrared sensors located every few meters of the corridor, and in the majority of rooms, these guns were capable to kill everyone without a special beacon. This was one of most expensive modifications on this frigate, used only once till now, but definitely it was worth its price.
A few seconds later Captain was lying in puddle of water and blood. He was full of respect to this system, but it was not the best time to admire results, he found that intercom was flooded too, so he had to find a new one, and get to the bridge before Imperialists noticed the lack of a few people onboard.

-Captain? Captain! Finally, good to hear you are alive!
-Thanks Van. What's our status?
-Sir, we've got about 20 or more troops onboard, all wear battle suits and are searching the ship. Until now our men moved from their way, but encounter in unavoidable.
-Damn it! Tell our men to stay in groups and avoid them as long as they can
-Sir, many of them have damaged intercoms because of the water
-Next time remind me to buy waterproof once
-Sir... we should give them the "client", we won't manage to charge hyperdrive before they'll kill everyone onboard
-No. It's out of question
-But sir...
-Give out the orders, lock as many doors as you can

The Captain opened the doors and had the impression he came to the only quiet and calm place on this ship. Kate was sitting just as he left her, quiet... and clean, in this room, the system never turns on.
-You've got troubles... because of me
-Nothing we can't handle
The girl stood up and smiled
-I'll go to them, you should live
-What? No... no way
-So what you want to do?
-Now - hide you
He took her hand and they both walked off the room towards the elevator, but at this moment,its doors opened...

SurpriseEdit

-Freeze!
The Captain put his hands up in the air while Kate was standing a step ahead of him looking on both Imperialist soldiers ahead of them.
-You, hands up! - said second soldier
She still hadn't moved.

The Captain estimated distance between her and soldiers. It was about 5 meters, way too far for her to try fight with them... even if she was Sobani, trained since earliest childhood she couldn't do anything in such a situation. They had heavy rifes, while she was unarmed... The Captain for a moment wondered how she could attack them but in any case - it would lead to her death. Yet, still, she stood there like if she was asking to be shot.
-Don't...
In same moment, she jumped towards the wall, effortlessly bounced off it, pulled out the pistol from back of her robe and shot in heart of the first soldier. The second one fired but the bullets hit the wall while she already gave another shot hitting him between the eyes.

Kate took the gun of first man and throwed it to the Captain who still stood with hands in the air. -Well... looks like there is no safe place on this ship anymore. Time for a plan B. - said the girl hiding the pistol back in her robe.
-Plan B? What plan B?
-You escort me to my room.
-And what with my men?
-Take me there. This should solve this problem
-What?! Anytime soon they will start shooting, if they haven't already, and after that it won't take long till we'll be last onboard
-They came here to take me alive. The commodore wouldn't be that stupid to allow them to shoot
-He fired at you - Captain pointed out the still smoking gun
-Wouldn't you shoot?
-This doesn't make me feel anyway closer to what I would call "safe" about the lives of my men.
-You have any better plan?
-Eh... ok then. Hope you've got an army of those fancy Marines out there

Everything went smoothly. They pretended he escorted her back to the ship, if someone asked him who she was, then the Captain would say that "The commodore wants to speak with her". The soldiers were too busy to stay in place and ask more questions while they still had almost 200m long ship to search, and this wasn't easy when most doors were locked, and from time to time some encounters happened between them and Authadeia's crew. Finally, they reached last corridor. The Captain looked behind the corner and saw group of four soldiers placing charge on Kate's quarter doors. There was no time to think now. He took Frag Grenade and throw it towards them. Hidden behind wall he awaited till the explosion, then he instantly emerged and fired long salvo into cloud of smoke.
-Wait here
He told Kate while he moved to check if the area was clear. Slowly and silently, he moved into the smoke aiming each shape he could see and silently in mind counting bodies. One... two... three... the fourth man lied on ground with his face covered with blood. His helmet visor was broken, but he was conscious enough to pull out the gun. Unlucky for him Captain was faster. -Clear! - he shouted
Kate saw that there were no doors anymore to her room, the charge must have exploded together with the grenade; but everything inside seemed to be intact. -Make your thing, we must hurry
The Captain said while she moved fast to the bed, from below which she took the case. Opened it, and sit there for a moment while he was watching the corridor.
-Ready?
-Ok, what now?
-Now we have to wait
-How long?
-I... I don't know - she said with sadness
-For your "I don't know" we've risked lives of everyone onboard? Damn!
The Captain took the intercom
-Van, full power ahead, we gotta run outta here
-But sir, the hyperdrive...
-There is no other choice. Take us as far from this Cruiser as you can.
-Yes sir

The engines of The Authadeia suddenly glowed, the ship moved forward breaking the docking sleeve. Five men suddenly felt vacuum, and few seconds’ later burn in hot plasma from the drives. The Authadeia was faster than the Evocarti however, Evocarti's weapons had got enough range and firepower to destroy anyone foolish enough to try such an escape. Additionally they had an unknown number of Imperialist soldiers onboard which would likely try to take control of the ship. The situation wasn't good, and there was no visible perspective to improve it anytime soon.

BeaconEdit

Kate and the Captain walked through a corridor filled with some small derbies, smoke, and a smell of burning mixed with sharp smell of blood. Every few steps there was an Imperialist soldier laying dead. Kate counted 10 of them in total. Finally, they emerged from the smoke and saw a few men aiming at them with rifes, Jeremy was between them.
- Captain!
- Jeremy - The Captain smiled - what happened here?
- Well, Imperialists attempted to take the Bridge... unsuccessfully
- Good work
- Thanks - Jeremy pointed at the large metal doors behind - You should talk with Van
- Something's wrong?
- You would better ask him...

Just in the moment they entered, a bright Ion Beam passed next to ship's hull filling the Bridge with red light.
-Warning shot - said Van not noticing the Captain entering.
-Van, what's our status?
-Sir! - Van was slightly surprised - Sir, the Imperialist cruiser damaged our engines, we've got an unknown number of enemy soldiers onboard, they took control over the starboard cannon, and a few engineering control rooms.
-What's the Evocarti doing? Besides firing on us of course
-They are incoming fast on the intercepting course.
-Hyperdrive?
-One minute thirty seconds
-Ok, looks like we aren't in that bad situation
-Imperialists took the hyperdrive engineering control room. They can disable it any moment
-Great... any more "bad news"?
-They sabotaged emergency beacons
-All three?
-Yes sir
Captain looked a bit crashed with this news - now they had no chance to either escape or call anyone for help. Nothing could stop imperialists form taking the Authadeia in a current situation.
-How's internal communication?
-Operational, the majority of crew got new intercoms
The Captain sat in his chair and after moment of silence told the communications officer
-Contact our best assault team and order them to take back hyperdrive engineering control room
-Aye aye sir
-Kate, what did you do out there, in your room? - asked Captain bit more silently now.
-Emergency tracking device... should bring some ships
-There are no tracking devices anyone here could track which are smaller than suitcase
-There is no civilian one
-Sobani... - he whispered silently
-Ok, we must earn some time. Thrusters are online?
-Partially - answered the navigations officer
-Rotate us towards the enemy unit and fire at their Ion Cannons
-Yes sir! - Van smiled

Cannons fired heavy projectiles. The over one hundred kilograms bullets accelerated to enormous speeds by electromagnetic fields were capable to cut through solid metal like through warm butter. The newest military-grade cannons mount on Authadeia could do what Imperialists would never expect from the side of a frigate - threat the cruiser. When the third projectile penetrated the amourm the Imperialist Commodore was shocked. Damage was minor, not enough to immobilize the cannon, but this was what shouldn't ever happen.

- Scan their ship!
- Commodore, intense electromagnetic disruptions detected on all their cannons
- Destroy their weapons, but keep the bridge intact. Contact our men and tell them all to secure the hyperdrive.
- Yes sir.

     Onboard The Authadeia...
- All three shots hit the target. We've detected air leaks - informed the weaponmaster
- Their weapons?
- Still charging. Looks like no damage
- Continue firing
- Yes Sir
- Captain... can we speak somewhere on private? - asked Kate
- Yes... of course.
They both walked to a separate room where the main computer was.
- Captain, if we'll survive enough, if we gonna make it and my people arrive I'll go to escape pod and would like you to hyperjump away from here.
- What? Wait... I didn't do all of this just to leave you in the pod!
- It's because... you don't want to stay in here. These are military guys, they will ask questions and so on... likely will want to search your ship
- Great, that's just great... one trouble runs another... looks like I have no choice then.
- No worries, I left you more than enough credits for repairs.
The Captain sighed, and smiled unnoticeably.
- Pods are in back of the tower... straight to the end of the corridor from Bridge.
- Thank you - Kate smiled, and gently dabbed his hand while walking out the room

The Captain stood in place for a moment, he was bit confused but next shot woke him up.

PodEdit

The Authadeia was heavily damaged, but still fired towards Imperialist cruiser. During the last five minutes the enemy ship stood in place firing from distance in attempts to destroy all the cannons of the frigate. Still The Authadeia was shooting, now only with one cannon, but it was enough - the Imperialists couldn't approach Authadeia when it was shooting, as this could put at risk both the secondary docking sleeve and the sublight engines making the Commodore's mission impossible to complete.

On the bridge everyone was afraid that worse could happen and the next shot hit the bridge. Captain ordered to prepare all escape pods, as the attempt to take control over hyperdrive didn't succeed.

-Sir! We've detected a quantum waveform!
-Finally
Kate walked closer to front window and after few seconds, she saw opening the blue hyperspace window.
-Here they are...
From hyperspace window a large ship emerged. Twice as long as Imperialist. Newly arrived ship, possessed enormous cannons, visible with naked eye even from The Authadeia. The hull was flat, long, painted black with few white stripes. Along the deck it had lines of lights, and on the broadside, the bridge was visible. In the back section, it possessed a large hangar, and enormous array of engines, wider than Authadeia was long. In parallel to the bridge, large turrets were placed, likely the Ion Cannons, as two lenses were visible. In addition, large kinetic guns were rotating towards the Imperialist cruiser, 4 turrets in total, each had two barrels.
-Captain, I must go. Good luck. - Kate told him
-Good luck to you too
She ran to the pod, while Captain gave order to move the ship on thrusters in the shadow of the Sobani ship.
-Continue fire! We must hide behind that battlecruiser. What's the status of hyperdrive?
-We are gathering the second group, but they took three hostages. - answered Van
-We must get it back and run away before the Sobani will put their noses into our business

Kate pressed the button to open small hatch. Above it, a small text was visible - "Narcissus 2" - it was the name of this pod. "A name for escape pod? He must be very attached to his ship" she thought. After a moment, she was sitting inside the tight cockpit. There was space for no more than three people, a pilot in front and two persons behind him on one couch. The pod was older version of these or majority of Hiigaran ships - still Kate had seen many older models in use than the one here, so it was quite acceptable.

She looked over the controls, and pulled the lever above her. The whole pod was shaken and it slowly drifted away from The Authadeia. It was in vertical position to the ship, nose pointing above it. Kate grabbed the joystick and gently rotated "Narcissus 2" in way she would see both the Sobani Battlecruiser and The Authadeia. The Sobani ship was firing its heavy guns towards the Imperialists slowly rotating starboard to put more cannons in fire. Authadeia however was looking far worse than it did from the inside. Ion Cannons left black lines along the hull, and majority of it was covered with numerous burnouts, some of the energy bullets penetrated throughout - Kate could see entire rooms through the holes. What was worse - the ship was still under fire, so she had to move away from it not to be hit. She found the throttle controls and pushed it. For a moment g-force was so huge that everything she seen faded in black. When she could see again the escape pod was in safe distance from battle. She rotated the pod back in the direction of Authadeia and gently slowed down the pod.

For a moment Kate had a flashback of the talk with Captain in computers room. She felt worry about his fate, unlike she has ever before to anyone. She wondered if her kiith brothers would come in time. "What? Wait... I didn't do all of this just to leave you in the pod!" - "his words... he was very worried". She felt pity for the Captain - now he had his ship in ruin, they barely will manage to reach the starport after hyperjump. Even though he had cash to make necessary repairs, he had lost something what had no price - the crewmembers.

     Onboard The Authadeia...
-Sir, their charging the Ion Cannons directly pointed at us!
-Damn it... run evac procedure! Everyone to the escape pods!
Van hit large button and on all the screens on ship one text appeared: "Abandon Ship". -Run people, run to the pods! - Captain pointed the doors behind him and everyone on the Bridge instantly moved towards their only hope for survival.
-Van, you come with me.
-Yes sir

     Onboard Narcissus 2...
At this moment Kate saw a bright blue beam fired from the Qwaar-Jet which went below Battlecruiser hull and hit straight in the middle of The Authadeia. Red-hot plates of hull flew away from the beam, which pierced deeper and deeper. Few escape pods detached from lower decks of the ship, yet pods in bridge tower were still intact. Beam finally reached main reactor - enormous plasma burst emerged from the channel made by Ion beam making it few times larger. Space almost instantly filled with burning derbies from which few hit nearby pods. Bobbles of air spread away making it impossible for anyone in them survive. Series of explosions along primary power conductors separated huge armor plate at the bottom of the ship exposing crew quarters, and the pressure pull out everything inside... Finally, an enormous explosion tore the ship apart.

-Noooooooo! - Kate screamed.
Her eyes filled with tears, and she felt as if someone cut open her chest with a dull sword. Nothing but constant pain filled her... crying onboard the last functional remain of The Authadeia.

The End







Thanks for Norsehound who (not intentionally) encouraged me to write this story.
~Sky_walker

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