11/03/2016 at 23:19 #5872QuinnParticipant
Personal Log: Lt. Jr. Quinn of the
TSN Hydra (CM-008), 2F 4LD
War is hell. They’ve been drilling that into us since before enlistment:
“War is hell, son, are you sure you’re ready to commit your life to the TSN?”
“If you space whales can’t survive my boot camp how in the ever-expanding observable universe are you gonna survive the utter hell of war?”
“War is hell, cadets, and the only way to get through it is to trust your training and your fellow officers.”
War is hell. War is hell. War is hell.
That last bit, the old adage of trusting our fellow officers is the one that haunts me right now, after what happened. It turned out to be bad advice.
There’s a bond between crewmembers that I’ve never experienced anywhere else. It’s a mix of coworker, sibling, and best friend all rolled into one. It goes beyond trust. Trust requires thought and choice. I have no choice but to trust my fellow officers, it’s the only way to function on a starship.
Lt. Cdr. Del Pino and Ensign Cessna betrayed that trust when they commandeered my home, the TSN Hydra, intending to deliver it to their Unukalhai masters. Though I suppose technically they betrayed us long ago when they decided to join those xenophobic monsters, we just didn’t feel the knife in our back until now.
The rest of us were in the galley when they did it, gossipping about something or other, while Del Pino and Cessna reboarded the Hydra and sealed the airlock behind them. Being XO, Del Pino had the clearance codes to do whatever he wanted with the ship.
I can’t help but wonder what the enlisted personnel were thinking when they suddenly undocked from the station and found themselves flying at high warp, being attacked by friendly ships, and being ordered to fight back with everything they had. Did Del Pino manage to convince them that we were the traitors? Or did he have to lock them all out from thwarting his betrayal? Did they attempt a mutiny before their death?
I choose to think the best of them, but I suppose that’s mostly to set my mind at ease. In the end, the truth doesn’t matter much considering the ultimate outcome.
When division command realized what was happening, everyone was scrambled to their ships, but Fulvus and I were left standing in the galley, stunned. I think Matsiyan was pulled onto the Phoenix, but Fulvus and I had nowhere to go. In one fell swoop, our home and our workplace were stolen out from under us. Thankfully we didn’t have to wait long before Cdr. Verok found us and the three of us ran to board the TSN Hunter and join the division in chasing down the traitors.
There was a skeleton crew posted to the Hunter for just such an occasion, and though we were short staffed on the bridge, the ship was ready to launch. We didn’t have time for the preflight checklist, and the engines weren’t even warm by the time I threw it into warp 4 to catch up to the fleeing traitors. The Hunter had no problem matching their speed, but could do frustratingly little once we did. We attempted to use what little ordnance we had against them but the torpedoes couldn’t keep up at such high speeds. We were limited to using the Hunter’s small forward beam while we avoided the mines and nukes the Hydra was launching like mad.
As we chased them, Cessna broadcasted a xenophobic rant to all ships about the superiority of humans and decrying the TSN’s inclusive practices. It was unsettling to think I served so closely with a man whose true heart I could never understand, a man who until only moments before I had considered a friend. Sad to think the last words I heard my former friend speak were so full of hate.
We almost caught them as they went through the Arietis gate, but their head start was a little too much. We pursued them through the next several sectors and the rest of the fleet was getting in decent shots as we did. We finally brought them down as they prepared to jump through the Poseidon gate, but Del Pino and Cessna would not be taken alive. Instead, they detonated their last remaining nuke and sent their warp core into meltdown.
The blast wreaked havoc on the nearby Raven and took down a good portion of our own systems, but we managed to limp away while they were forced to eject life pods. The Hydra, however, was melted entirely into slag along with all hands, loyal or not.
Thankfully my training kicked in before my grief could, and I immediately maneuvered to pick up the Raven’s life pods along with the rest of the fleet. Fleet command anticipated we might need reinforcements, and the skeleton crew of the TSN Excalibur caught up with us quickly. We transferred the crew of the Raven to her just in time to see the Poseidon gate spinning up to receive a jumping ship.
Hoping to catch us on the back foot while we dealt with the betrayal, massive USF and kralien fleets began to jump in and attack. Ironic, the xenophobes teaming up with aliens. I suppose the power of the “enemy of my enemy” strategy outweighs even those deeply-held beliefs. The fleet struggled to repair and regroup in the face of such overwhelming odds, but we managed to turn the tide, possibly out of sheer rage.
I don’t even remember the flight back to Atlantis command or the briefing that came after. Other things happened this shift too– I have notes on the whole duty shift, tons of things to write about. The problem is, all the events from before the betrayal look like stars on the other side of a singularity. Their light is there and, given the right algorithm, we could separate it out from the rest of the background noise. Right now, though, it’s all distorted and fractured by the weight of what’s in front of me and I don’t have the strength to sort it out and put it all back together.
Lieutenant, Junior Grade Quinn
TSN Hydra (CM-008)
2nd Fleet, 4th Light Division11/03/2016 at 23:34 #5876Blaze StrifeParticipant
//Very nice writing!
//Will Quinn now have trust issues? That would be a cool bit to roleplay.12/03/2016 at 01:03 #5878Adele MundyParticipant
//Great stuff.12/03/2016 at 07:47 #5887MatsiyanParticipant
// Applause, brother, applause.
Did they really give you Hunter?12/03/2016 at 16:29 #5920QuinnParticipant
//Yeah, it was total chaos though, the three of us flying an unfamiliar ship at warp 4 and trying to avoid mines and nukes…
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