Voyages of the Cerberus episode 6: Drive Retrieved

Kat carefully latched her fighter onto the enemy ship. Allison and Leon brought their ships alongside hers. She switched on her cutting lasers, putting a small circular hole in the side. Then she made sure her suit was airtight and opened her canopy. The three of them hurried through the newly forged entrance.

“All right,” Kat said, her voice sounding somewhat husky from her flight helmet. “I’ll stay here and guard our ships. You two go find the objective. You do have the tracker, right?”

“Right here,” Leon said, showing her the small handheld device.

“Should I leave you a ball of yarn to play with?” Allison asked.

“No time for snappy patter,” Leon said. “Let’s go.”

“You’re never any fun on missions,” Allison muttered but she followed him regardless.

The two moved down the corridor, taking the left path. They moved carefully but quickly, keeping watch for any enemies. It didn’t take long to encounter them. A group of five equipped with pressure suits. Probably sent to investigate the hull breach.

Allison was fastest on the draw, quickly firing a blaster bolt through the neck of the closest one before diving for cover. Leon charged right at them, holding a plasma grenade against his chest and sending a maniacal laugh over all frequencies. The group panicked only to be shot down by Allison as they tried to flee.

“One of these days someone’s going to notice what you’re doing and shoot you instead of freaking out,” Allison said.

“Not undisciplined trash like this,” Leon stated, placing the grenade back on his belt. “Come on. It’s not far from here.”

*****

Kat listened for the sounds of the enemy. Guard duty was always dull, but someone had to do it. Leaving the fighters unguarded in hostile territory was just too risky.

Footsteps were approaching from the right. Enemy soldiers. She calmly tossed a thermal explosive down the length and listened to the blast followed by silence. She watched the area for a while, just to be certain.

*****

Lucy fired, pelting their hull. The enemy ship fired back, several shots hitting them directly.

“Shields are at sixty percent,” Farah reported. “Their shields are holding too.”

Lucy fired another volley, peppering them.

The Cerberus shook. “Their weapons are still functional,” Farah reported. “Captain, our shields may not survive another burst.”

“They won’t have to,” Ophelia said. “Hold on. This is going to be rough.”

Ophelia steered the Cerberus into a steep descent, moving below the enemy ship. Lucy unleashed a volley at the ship’s underside in that moment. The Cerberus quickly emerged behind them. Lucy fired a barrage of missiles across their back.

“They’ve taken heavy damage,” Farah reported. “Their shields and weapons are completely offline.”

“Isn’t that nice,” Lucy said, her usual smile momentarily growing wider. She fired a direct burst into their engines, destroying the ship.

“Grace, I want our shields fixed up in a hurry!” Ophelia ordered.

“I can get you partial power,” Grace’s voice came in clearly over the communications system. “But it’s going to take time for them to be in top shape.”

“Divert power from non-essential systems if you have to,” Ophelia said. “Give me as much as you can.”

*****

The drive was locked behind a security door. Leon and Allison set up some explosives to blow it open. A piece of shrapnel hit Leon’s forehead. He ignored it and the two moved in, blasting everyone left standing.

“We may have overdone it,” Allison stated. “Did we damage the drive?”

“It does look a little singed,” Leon said.

“Ophelia’s gonna be pissed,” Allison muttered.

“Grace is gonna be mad too,” Leon added. “You know that Ophelia’s going to ask her to fix it.” He sighed, heavily. “Looks like we dun goofed.”

He grabbed the drive and the two ran out. Back towards Kat and their ships.

*****

“The fighters are heading back,” Farah reported. “Looks like they did it.”

Ophelia nodded. “How long until their reinforcements arrive?”

“A minute and ten seconds,” Farah said.

“I’m taking us in to pick them up,” Ophelia said. She turned the Cerberus towards the small fighters and opened the docking bay for them. The three ships quickly boarded.

“They’re almost within weapons’ range!” Farah cried.

“I’m gunning it,” Ophelia said. “We’ll get the hell out of here and move back to stealth running as soon as we lose them.  She turned away from their pursuers and moved into maximum speed.

Farah watched her sensors as the hostile ships got further and further away.

*****

Paul moved to the docking bay with a portable med-kit,

“Welcome back,” he said. “Was anyone hurt?”

“No problems,” Leon said.

Paul moved up to him and began cleaning a deep gash on his forehead.

“Well, nothing serious anyway,” Paul said.

Leon’s face flushed. “I didn’t even notice that I had that. Not even sure how it happened.”

“You got hit by a bit of metal when we blasted their security door,” Allison said.

“I did?” Leon asked. “Don’t remember that.”

“I’ll take the drive over to Grace,” Kat said. “These two overdid it with the explosives.”

“Well that’s just blasphemy,” Allison said. “How can you have too many explosives?”

“Solid point,” Kat said. “Maybe you can explain it to Grace?”

“No thanks,” Allison said. “I’d kind of like to live another seventy years or more.”

“That’s what I thought,” Kat said. “I’ll give her your condolences over it.”

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About ktulu007

I don’t really like talking about myself, but for the curious I’m Deutsch. I’m the second oldest of three children, four if you count my adopted sister. We largely grew up without a father. Writing has been a major passion for me since I was small. I like to write online because it offers me some freedom to experiment with different genres and provides me with more of an audience than I would normally have access to. One of my bigger influences has always been my youngest sister. She’s very socially aware, an excellent judge of quality when it comes to writing and very supportive of my efforts. Whenever I write I ask myself “would she find major problematic elements in this that I need to change?” and I try to be socially responsible enough and good enough to be as good of a writer as she thinks I am.
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