The Order of the Stick: Utterly Dwarfed
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  1. - Top - End - #181
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    "I'm out of missiles! I'll try to deal with the mobile suits in the other group now. Try not to get me in cross fire," Yuuki shouts. The Shura boosts forward to meet the Ragalian forces, hosing down any target that presents itself with a burst from the beam gatling gun.

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    Quickly attacking. Invoking Sensor Overload.

    (4d3-5)[5]
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  2. - Top - End - #182
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    The enemy suits in the second formation are caught off guard by the Shura; Yuuki finds them in positions to defend against her previous position as the Vengeance's escort. A few of the farther out squads manage to get enough time to quickly fire thrusters and try to evade, but most of the closer ones are caught completely off guard, and barely have time to try and shield themselves from the Shura's assault.

    Spoiler: Defense
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    Quickly defending, either through maneuvers or trying to shield their bodies with their arms. (4d3-10)[-1]


    Spoiler: Outcome
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    Success with Style - You may reduce damage by one to gain a boost. Doing so won't affect the following outcome.


    Even those further out don't seem to have the speed to outpace the Shura's targeting software, and the heavily armed mobile suit blazes a path through the enemy formation, leaving death and destruction in its wake. Although Yuuki wasn't able to catch all of the formation's suit complement with her attack run, she was able to destroy a significant number of them, potentially opening a path for her allies to destroy the rest of them, and potentially do some damage to the ships as well.
    Last edited by Nova_Eclipse; 2018-03-15 at 10:24 PM.
    Why is it Plan A is always, "Get 'Em!" and Plan B is, "Cause as much collateral damage as possible"?

  3. - Top - End - #183
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    Yuuki's destructive run has caused chaos in the second formation, and as a result, the remaining suits are going to have a hard time co-ordinating any sort of organized offense or defense.

    Spoiler: Boost Created
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    Confusion in the Ranks


    Captain Brighton, for her part, quickly realizes that effective targets are in short supply, and given how fast the Vengeance is approaching, makes a command decision.

    "Yuuki, Athrusa, time to return to the ship! I'll take one last run at them, and then join you!"

    A moment later, Sazabi rockets across the area to the second formation, and carves another arc through it, before looping back towards the Vengeance, which is growing closer to the enemy by the second. The confusion the Shura just sowed is not going to help the enemy mobile suits mount an effective defense, but a few at least try to maneuver out of harm's way.

    Spoiler: Attack
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    Quickly attacking the enemy: (4d6-6)[9] Incorrect, see OOC thread.

    Spoiler: Defense
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    Evasive maneuvering: (4d6-10)[7] Incorrect, see OOC thread.


    The Sazabi manages to damage another of the remaining suits, but it's doubtful those left are going to be able to muster much of a counterattack now.


    The Vengeance, for its part, is accelerating as fast as it can, and as such, it finds itself between the enemy formations in short order. It will be there only briefly, but Captain Brighton and the ship's XO have a little surprise in store; a parting gift for the enemy. As soon as the Vengeance passes into the space between the enemy formations, it launches its torpedoes in twin broadsides, hoping to decimate the enemy ships.

    Spoiler: Attack
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    Cleverly springing a trap on the hunting parties: (4d3-5)[5]


    The enemy ships quickly begin filling the space between them and the Vengeance with flak, hoping to destroy some of the incoming torpedoes.

    Spoiler: Defense
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    Forcefully defending using flak cannons: (4d3-5)[4]


    And then the fire intensifies, as they hope to deal some real damage to the Vengeance.
    Spoiler: Attack
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    Forcefully attacking: (4d3-5)[4]


    The Vengeance is mostly relying on its acceleration and speed to simply get away, and hoping its I-fields will be able to stop whatever shots actually manage to catch it.

    Spoiler: Defense
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    Quickly escaping: (4d3-6)[4]


    The flak and torpedoes at close range like this means there are a lot of explosions, and many of them are not where one would like them to be. Still, a few torpedoes manage to get through and do some damage to one of the battleships; and more importantly, provide a screen for the Vengeance's mobile suits to return to the carrier without being targeted by the enemy's flak cannons.
    Last edited by Nova_Eclipse; 2018-03-16 at 10:44 PM.
    Why is it Plan A is always, "Get 'Em!" and Plan B is, "Cause as much collateral damage as possible"?

  4. - Top - End - #184
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    "R-roger that!" Athrusa twists the controls and sucks a breath as she starts to feel pain pang through her systems. The Nephilim tilts, and spreads its wings as it glides along, using the cover of the flak-versus-torpedo firefight to assist in its evacuation out of the battlefield. She turns to look at the Shura to go, "Yell if you need help getting back, Yuuki!"

  5. - Top - End - #185
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    The Nephilim is easily able to catch up with the Vengeance, but as Athrusa begins making her landing approach, one of the ship's controllers comes over the comm. The voice is female, and friendly sounding, at least.

    "Nephilim, this is Vengeance control. Once you've touched down, we'd like for you to stay out on the deck until the Shura and Sazabi have returned. Once they're on the deck, you can go ahead and enter the hangar. Clear?"
    Why is it Plan A is always, "Get 'Em!" and Plan B is, "Cause as much collateral damage as possible"?

  6. - Top - End - #186
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    "Alright, I'm coming back." The Shura banks away from the Raglian ships, using one of the burnt out hulks as cover. Once Yuuki has a clear path to the Vengeance, she boosts back up to full throttle and starts making her way back to the mothership.
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  7. - Top - End - #187
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    The Shura takes a bit longer to catch up with the Vengeance, but Yuuki manages it. As with Athrusa, while Yuuki's making her landing approach, the Vengeance's controller comes over the comm.

    "Shura, this is Vengeance control. Once you've touched down, we'd like for you remain on deck until the Sazabi has returned, before you enter the hangar. Just taking some routine precautions. Once the Sazabi is on deck, you should be clear to enter the hangar."
    Why is it Plan A is always, "Get 'Em!" and Plan B is, "Cause as much collateral damage as possible"?

  8. - Top - End - #188
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    Athrusa listens in on the comms, and lands and stays on the deck with the cannons at the ready. She's trembling a little. "Y-yeah... I might need a medbay pickup after we're done. My body's not acting quite right. I think the cocktail's about up." She looks towards the Shura to somewhat shakily go, "Good work out there, Yu-Yuuki."

  9. - Top - End - #189
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    "We'll let the med team know to be on standby, Nephilim." As the controller cuts off, both Yuuki and Athrusa can see the Sazabi bank around and flare its thrusters, before the crimson suit lands heavily on the deck, optics glowing green. As it straightens up, Captain Brighton comes over the comm.

    "Good work, both of you. Let's-" She breaks off for a moment as the Vengeance's engines flare, jerking everyone with its sudden acceleration. A split second later, the Vengeance rocks again as the enemy formations fire a final, frustrated salvo from their beam weapons at the ship, as they're already beginning to fade into the distance. None penetrate the ship's I-field, but it feels to be a very near thing. Captain Brighton breathes a sigh of relief, and finally finishes her thought.

    "Let's head in. Once you've got your suits berthed, meet me by the lift. I know you're running down, Athrusa, but I need you to bear with it for just a bit longer, ok?"
    Why is it Plan A is always, "Get 'Em!" and Plan B is, "Cause as much collateral damage as possible"?

  10. - Top - End - #190
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    Yuuki lets the Shura drift slowly forward into its docking bay and then brings it to ground with a thump. Finally clear of any danger, she lets out a long, profoundly grateful sigh and starts unstrapping herself from the pilot's seat.

    "You too, Athrusa. I'm glad I had you two out there to cover for me," she responds. "I just hope I don't ever have to do this again."
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  11. - Top - End - #191
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    The Nephilim is locked onto the hangar berth, as the last of the rounds rock against the ship's I-field. Athrusa kind of half-stumbles out as she undoes the neckbrace of her normal suit and takes her helmet off. Her vision's getting a little blurry. "Thanks... everyone. Hope I didn't cause too much work," she lets out an awkward grin as she heads to the elevator.

  12. - Top - End - #192
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    Captain Brighton doesn't say more over the comm, as she quickly maneuvers the Sazabi back into its berth, and quickly heads for the elevator, so as not to keep her pilots waiting. She needs for them to help her with updating fleet command once they've hit the jump point, and she's not sure how much longer Athrusa can go without needing rest.

    Nurse Celeste falls into step with Athrusa as soon as she's out of the Nephilim, giving the Artificial Ragalian some much needed support. Some of the returning pain vanishes once more at her touch, and she does her best to help Athrusa get to the elevator, giving her a grateful smile.

    "Good job, Athrusa. Captain Brighton gave us a quick update while you were berthing your suit; she needs you for a bit longer, but you won't need to pilot, just talk. I've got another dose of painkillers if you need them, but Dr. Tram doesn't want us to give you any more of the alertness boosters right now, if we can help it. You may need them later, when we get wherever we're going and he doesn't want you to develop a tolerance for them. I'll be with you, don't worry, the Captain said I could be there to help if you need it."


    Athrusa, Nurse Celeste, and Captain Brighton will arrive at the elevator at the same time, giving the three of them the chance to talk for a moment.

    Meanwhile, the Shura's hatch opens as Yuuki finishes unstrapping herself, and interposed into the space is her father, Itachi, looking profoundly relieved.

    "I'm glad you're back safe, sweetie." Before she can respond, he sweeps her up a big, warm hug. "I know you need to go meet with the Captain, but I needed this."
    Why is it Plan A is always, "Get 'Em!" and Plan B is, "Cause as much collateral damage as possible"?

  13. - Top - End - #193
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    Athrusa finds herself needing Nurse Celeste to move more and more as they head to the elevator; if a wheelchair is accessible, she'll sit down on it. "Y-yeah, I don't need the boosters... and I'll-- keep it together until I can get in bed. I know how addictive they can be, so I'd rather not rely on them too much..." She does give the nurse a look and a nod, as she says, "... I'm glad we managed to get away. I thought-- I thought about how much I wanted to help all of you in return... so thank you. You've been... really inspirational to me."

  14. - Top - End - #194
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    Once they reach the elevator, a wheelchair is waiting. Celeste helps Athrusa into it, as Captain Brighton arrives. The nurse looks about to say something when Captain Brighton speaks up.

    "Well, we're not quite away yet, but I doubt they'll be able to catch us now. We should be at the jump point in a few minutes." She nods at Celeste, who gives Athrusa a small shot, enough to numb the pain for another half an hour or so, though it might make her just a bit drowsy. "I need to update command right away, and I need you and Yuuki to help me with that, since you both got a better look at the ships in the asteroid field than I did. Once that's done, you're free to rest all you need while we're in FTL. I'm hoping we can get to someplace with some better medical facilities ASAP. We've got a lot of injured now." The other three pilots, at the very least, plus however many may have been injured during the fight. "Think you can hold out for another little bit?"
    Why is it Plan A is always, "Get 'Em!" and Plan B is, "Cause as much collateral damage as possible"?

  15. - Top - End - #195
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nova_Eclipse View Post
    Meanwhile, the Shura's hatch opens as Yuuki finishes unstrapping herself, and interposed into the space is her father, Itachi, looking profoundly relieved.

    "I'm glad you're back safe, sweetie." Before she can respond, he sweeps her up a big, warm hug. "I know you need to go meet with the Captain, but I needed this."
    Yuuki latches her arms around her father and buries her face deep into his chest. "Please don't let the Captain make me go out there again, Dad," she whispers. "I know they were just Ragalians, but I don't wanna have to kill anyone else."

    She pulls back, and says in a more normal voice, "I really do need to go talk to the captain."
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    I like you.

  16. - Top - End - #196
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    Itachi rubs her back soothingly for a moment, before she pulls back and he nods.

    "I'll get out of your hair for now, and I'll do what I can. Come see me when you're done," He pauses for a moment, with a wistful look on his face, then adds, "There are some things I think your mother would want you to know."

    And on that note, he quickly pulls himself out of the Shura's cockpit and hurries off, no doubt to see to the suit's refueling and re-arming, leaving Yuuki alone once more.
    Why is it Plan A is always, "Get 'Em!" and Plan B is, "Cause as much collateral damage as possible"?

  17. - Top - End - #197
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    Yuuki looks apprehensive, but she nods, and says, "Okay Dad. I'll try to get out of whatever debriefing we have to go through as quickly as possible."

    She hops out of the cockpit behind her father and heads towards the elevator at a fast trot. "Sorry that took me a while," she calls. "I got pu-" Suddenly, she cuts herself off and grinds to a stop as Athrusa finally comes into view.

    "What the **** is a Ragalian doing on this ship?"
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  18. - Top - End - #198
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    Athrusa slumps a little as she places a hand onto the damaged side of her face; she listens in on Captain Brighton's debrief, saying, "I'm-- I'll help you with that, but my flight recorder might have a better memory than I do at this point... yeah... I'll hang--"

    Yuuki comes into view. The white-haired Artificial Ragalian's ears perk up as she looks towards the girl and speaks--

    --before the question comes, and she suddenly falls silent. There's a stunned look on Athrusa's face, before she-- looks to Nurse Celeste, rather obviously shocked into a panic attack. "I--I'm not... I'm not..."

  19. - Top - End - #199
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    Captain Brighton raises an eyebrow at Yuuki. This is an unexpected development. She was under the assumption that all of the development staffs had intermingled on the base, but clearly, that wasn't true. She fixes the younger woman with a sharp look of authority.

    "She's not a Ragalian, Yuuki. She's a Qualian. You probably wouldn't have heard of them unless you were either in the military or were a Solarian before the war started. I can fill you in later, if you'd like," she offers, before her expression grows more serious, "But for now, all you need to know is that she was born as human as you or I, and I expect you to treat her with the same respect you give anyone else. Is that clear?"

    The nurse behind Athrusa's wheelchair touches her shoulder gently, a gesture meant to calm her down. Her voice is even and calm and sweet, and she smiles at Yuuki.

    "The Captain is right, Miss Yuuki. Athrusa's a Qualian, like me. We're a bit different, but we started the same as you did. You just fought beside her, helping her protect the ship. She's the same as you on the inside. The Ragalians are our enemies; we shouldn't be looking for battles among friends."
    Why is it Plan A is always, "Get 'Em!" and Plan B is, "Cause as much collateral damage as possible"?

  20. - Top - End - #200
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    Yuuki glares at the captain, then Athrusa, and then the captain again. "So one of them lied about where they're from to get in the research station. Spying isn't exactly rare in war."
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    I like you.

  21. - Top - End - #201
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    "I--I didn't lie... I didn't lie..." Athrusa whimpers, even as the news of Celeste being a Qualian like her comes out. She... didn't know at all. She didn't, truthfully, even know there were others -- during her engineering process, she was kept entirely isolated from others until she was pawned off to the Stetchkin project. She shivers and clutches onto Celeste's hands. "It hurts..."

  22. - Top - End - #202
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    Captain Brighton stares Yuuki down, her expression icy.

    "I know where she came from. I know where you came from. I know why you're here, I know why she's here. And I know what your hang-up is, Miss Itano, more intimately than perhaps you do. I know a great deal about everyone who came aboard. I did -not- waste the time we spent hiding in that asteroid field. While you and your team were securing your suit and loading it out, I was given full personnel files on everyone who came aboard, and I spent that time verifying that everyone who's aboard is a legitimate asset on their projects. That includes both you, and your father, as well as Athrusa. I am willing to share how we know that she's an Artificial Ragalian, so that you understand who your real enemy is, but-not- -this- -instant-. Our first priority is to update command. We should be hitting jump in the next few minutes, and if we can specify any sort of vector before we go, I'm sure command would like for us to try and make it." Her expression softens just a bit.

    "Can you trust me enough to humor me until we're in FTL?"

    Nurse Celeste doesn't say more while the Captain deals with Yuuki, instead she looks down at Athrusa, and turns the young woman's wrist over slightly, before taking a hypo cartridge out of a small pack at her waist and administering another dose of the painkillers. The drug should help Athrusa's pain, but it will probably make her drowsy. She gives Yuuki an expectant look, but says nothing more for now, waiting to hear her answer.
    Why is it Plan A is always, "Get 'Em!" and Plan B is, "Cause as much collateral damage as possible"?

  23. - Top - End - #203
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    Yuuki stares back at Captain Brighton, her gaze just as icy. "I'll drop it, since you'll probably throw me in the brig or something if I don't. But I don't trust you."
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  24. - Top - End - #204
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    Captain Brighton sighs and nods, closing her eyes for a moment and rubbing her temples as she takes a step towards the lift. This has been a very bad day, and she's been pushing herself the entire time, trying to keep everyone alive. But then, that's why they made her the Vengeance's Captain, after all.

    "Fine. We'll discuss this later, then."

    Celeste begins to push Athrusa's chair towards the lift, and speaks softly.

    "Captain, please be quick. All the additional stress is causing problems with Athrusa's injuries. I'm not sure how long she can hold out."
    Why is it Plan A is always, "Get 'Em!" and Plan B is, "Cause as much collateral damage as possible"?

  25. - Top - End - #205
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    There's a somewhat shaky tremble as Athrusa sinks back into her chair, feeling the hypo cartridge's contents filtrate into her bloodstream. There's a quiet sigh, and she casts one timid look at Yuuki -- then away again as she holds rather tightly onto her wheelchair's armrests. "Thank you... Miss Celeste..."

  26. - Top - End - #206
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    Celeste squeezes Athrusa's hand, gently as the Artificial Ragalian begins to relax, comfort and confidence flowing from the gesture into Athrusa, though the nurse says no more as both she and Captain Brighton step onto the lift. Once Yuuki joins them, Captain Brighton pushes the button for the bridge deck, and the lift quickly whisks them to the topmost level of the ship. She leads them down a short hall that ends with several blast doors. One of them leads straight on, and is marked "Bridge", while the one on the right is emblazoned with the Republic Alliance insignia on top, and right below that, in plain lettering, is a name: "Nina Brighton, Captain, Republic Alliance Space Forces". The door's owner presses her hand to the lock pad, and the door snaps open with a pneumatic hiss.

    Inside is a small office, with a desk set out from the wall closest to the bridge, while two chairs are opposite the desk, ostensibly for discussing business with the Captain. On the wall opposite the desk are three large displays. On the wall opposite the door are a number of framed photos, as well as a half-destroyed dartboard with three very slim throwing knives sticking out of it. There's enough room between the desk and the display wall that everyone present can fit, if a bit snugly. Captain Brighton gestures for everyone to follow her inside, then makes her way to the desk, and begins typing something into the terminal there, though she doesn't sit down.

    "Make yourselves as comfortable as you can, I know things are tight in here. We'll be in contact with RA command momentarily."

    Why is it Plan A is always, "Get 'Em!" and Plan B is, "Cause as much collateral damage as possible"?

  27. - Top - End - #207
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    As the group files out of the elevator, Yuuki takes up position as far from Athrusa as she can, and stands with her arms crossed surily.
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    Athrusa looks a little surprised at the room, especially the dartboard and the photos. She can't help but catch notice, looking over as to who they might be. Before long, however, the medicine's causing her eyes to become blurry again, and she droops to one side as she waits.

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    Clearly, the photos are Captain Brighton's. Nearly all of them are group shots, sometimes smaller groups, sometimes larger ones, sometimes all humans, sometimes with a group as mixed as the crew of the Vengeance seems to be, though interestingly, there are no photos of anyone resembling the Captain herself that might be considered parents or siblings. Picking out the Captain out of the group shots isn't difficult; her face hasn't changed that much in the intervening years. Curiously, though, there's a somewhat familiar looking face in a few of them. Someone resembling Yuuki, but clearly older than the Captain was in each photo. She seems to have a motherly attitude with everyone else in the photos, the Captain included. Yuuki might also note this very familiar person among the photos, but there's little chance for either of them to say anything before the screens light briefly with the Republic Alliance logo, then begin showing three older men, clearly Captain Brighton's superiors. She salutes them as they speak.

    "Oh, Nina, I trust we have good news?" The first says, a kindly-looking older man with striking blue eyes and a warm, grey beard. Yuuki can recognize him immediately, since he's been in the news vids practically every day since the war started. Admiral Amadeus Gato, the most prominent of the AAF's two dozen Admirals, and direct descendant of First Contact War hero Anavel Gato. Admiral Gato was one of the first humans to transfer from his home nation's military to the combined forces of the Republic Alliance, and the move was seen as a positive, both politically and militarily.

    "We were beginning to think the worst had happened," The second says. Athrusa might recognize the hawkish older man as Admiral Elias Maxwell, of the Solar Retribution Society. Before the SRS, he was a part of a vocal minority in the Solarian government that had urged preparedness for the return of the Ragalians. History proved him right, much to his own chagrin. It's been rumored that he acquired the Nephilim privately and donated it to the RA, but nothing solid was ever shown in the way of proof of this.

    "I see you have some of the young pilots with you. What happened to the rest of them?" The third's question seems to concern the other two. Unless Yuuki or Athrusa are well-versed in international politics and military command, they probably won't recognize this man, though his uniform is very similar to the one the Captain wears when she's not piloting a mobile suit, while the other two men's uniforms are more refined and noble-esque. Captain Brighton lowers her hand and smiles at all of them, tension evident in the expression.

    "In due time, Admiral Stazi. There's been a development here. The enemy has sent one of their worldships, and it almost came through the jump point on top of us. We've managed to fight past it, and we're only a few minutes from the jump point. This is our last chance to make vector corrections, and if we can lay in a course to anywhere that might be helpful to the fleet, I'd like to try."

    All three of them seem to look in different directions for a moment; no doubt looking at each other through their own vid-links, the effect is comical, though they don't mean it to be. After a moment, Admiral Gato nods and leans towards the vid pick-up.

    "Cordellia, if you can manage it. I know it's a week's transition time, but if you're going to be of any use, it will be there. Axis volunteered to let the Alliance use their Newtype weapons testing facility for a second, smaller run of specialty Newtype-use Gundams. The damn Raggies have leapfrogged our lines in multiple places; we're still not sure how. The facility there reported nothing unusual an hour ago, but if the Raggies send a force there like they did to Stechkin, they might not be as lucky; there were no ships scheduled to be through for another three weeks."

    The other Admirals nod, and Stazi speaks up again.

    "We're still dealing with the incursions, so be careful, Nina. We can't afford to lose the Vengeance, the Gundams, or their pilots."

    Captain Brighton nods somberly as she taps something quickly on the keyboard on her desk. No doubt, informing the bridge crew of their new destination.

    "I'll do my best sir. I've informed our bridge crew as to the destination," she says, as she comes around the desk, gesturing at Yuuki and Athrusa. "And to your earlier question, sir, they've been incapacitated, so far as I'm aware. I had to join the fight in order to bring at least three suits to the fight. Yuuki and Athrusa here are the only pilots I have."

    "I see Miss Athrusa is in a wheelchair; I take it she was injured during the battle?"

    "Before, sir, during the evacuation. She managed to get the Nephilim and her injured co-pilot aboard the ship while injured, and while the other pilot succumbed to his wounds, we were able to fix some of the injuries Athrusa received. Unfortunately, that's a topic we'll need to get into another time. The short of it is that we'll need to divert to a place with an advanced medical facility to heal some of the more permanent damage; my doctors tell me there's equipment that will be needed that we don't have aboard."

    "And still injured, she managed to pilot the suit?" He pauses, eyes wide, fixed in an expression of awe, staring at Athrusa. "Remarkable. Can you tell me, young lady, what sorts of suits the enemy brought to bear against your Gundam in space?"
    Why is it Plan A is always, "Get 'Em!" and Plan B is, "Cause as much collateral damage as possible"?

  30. - Top - End - #210
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    Default Re: Gundam: Wrath of the Stars IC

    Athrusa wasn't the kind of person who was allowed much exposure to the outside. Her Ragalian conversion was done in an incredibly sterile lab, and the only people she know for the longest time were her handlers. Admiral Maxwell feels... a little familiar, as if she'd gleaned his presence in a TV somewhere in Stetchkin 4, maybe, but there was not really any chance of her recognising anything in her current state.

    "... y-yes. Lt. Mathias was... meant to be the Nephilim's pilot, but he... he died protecting me," Athrusa reports, though she's fighting to fight back tears at remembering the memory. "The suits... the most recognisable ones were the ones at the spear of the pursuit force after us, who came from the Worldship. They were armed with beam rifles and had in-built weaponry, including what I think was a shoulder-mounted cannon..."

    A pause. "I managed to acquire some beam rifles and sabers by scavenging during the battlefield, since my suit has next to no weapons left... the engineering team should be able to provide you with diagnosis..."

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