Patton's Adventures

Assault on Altair - Part One

We were alone. Isolated from any intelligent life. We were… content.

The masses were comfortable with the belief that they were the sole surviving race in the galaxy. Confident that their own superiority had ensured their place among the stars. That the now almost mythical "Orion Wars" were either just the fanciful tales of the elders, or just minor footnotes in a galactic history that no longer applied to us.

Slowly we began to explore our surrounding systems, finding little. Our home was located in the far corner of the northern arm of the galaxy. We found several systems with habitable systems. We began our plan for expansion and dominance. Much to our surprise we found a small enclave of warlike creatures, calling themselves Bulrathi. We landed and integrated the inferior beings into our society. They were only too happy to comply, obviously seeing security for themselves in our superior society. For the fist time in millennia questions about the old, "Orion Wars" were asked. The Bulrathi claimed to have been all but exterminated by a race calling themselves the New Orions and their maniacal plans of genocide.

We scoffed at their tales and continued to expand our influence. We found still other races of inferior beings. They were like the others; ugly, inferior and pathetic. The Alkari and some "intelligent" plant like creatures calling themselves "Audrieh." We brought them into the fold of our greatness and they succumbed to our will. Eventually we had explored all the systems in our arm of the galaxy, there was but one star lane left to explore. Our instruments indicated that it lead to a solitary system on the fringes of the galactic core. A single recon flight was dispatched to find what was on the other side.

It never reported back.

At first our leaders thought nothing of it, assuming an accident had disabled or destroyed the hapless craft. Another mission was dispatched, this time 3 scouts were tasked with the mission. They arrived in system and began planetary surveys. They found no indications of life anywhere in the system. No signs of our last scouting mission were found either. Orders were given to approach the main planet of the system, the commander assumed the last ship must have crashed on planet.

No sign of inhabitants, until the scout ship, "Reaper" was hit by a beam of unimagined destructive power. One marginal hit and the ship disintegrated completely. Scans indicated no source of the attack. Frantic at the helplessness of the situation, the order was given to retreat. The two remaining ships wheeled 180 degrees and accelerated at maximum power away from the planet. Then sensors detected it.

"It" was massive. Surely the size of a small moon and it moved with a speed and agility unmatched by our best fighters. The massive behemoth came barreling down upon our hapless ships, disgorging missiles and fighter and again, the beams eagerly sought a target, lancing out into the darkness. The second ship was vaporized as the third and last ship hit the hyper barrier and made the jump.

When news of the disaster reached home, our universe came crashing down around us. We were not alone after all. We were not secure. We were not superior. For the first time in living history, we realized that the stories of yore were not exaggerations, but in fact quite possibly understatements of the reality we now found ourselves in. We set upon ourselves the goal of defeating the, monstrosity, that blocked our rightful ascension. This, thing, that kept up cooped up like animals. We were terrified at first. This foreign thing that had done this to use so easily meant that something out there was more powerful than even us. The size of the ship alone was proof of their technological superiority, not to mention is stealth and weapons platforms.

We set upon ourselves the goal to destroy this affront to nature that had designed to deny us our rightful place in the universe. We would bend all our efforts and energies to this abomination's destruction. We designed powerful warships; The Man-O-War Class Light Missile Cruiser. With its Neutronium Warheads, this vessel formed the core of our fleet. It's small hull limited the size of her magazine, but with the smaller number of reloads, we could put another launcher in the hull. These ships were escorted by a handful of "Aegis" Class Escort Carriers (Light cruisers) and Phalanx Class PD Light Cruisers. We thought these vessels would surely be able to destroy the Guardian. It turns out, we were wrong, about a great, many things…

3 Armadas of Missile Cruisers, with our Phalanx Class Escort cruisers (light cruisers, PD nukes and graviton beams) ships set out for the Guardians' system, along with an Armada of carriers with 2 of our new AWACs Corvettes. They arrived in system and immediately began scanning for the hostile they knew was there. They detected nothing. Our new High Caliber Sensors did, however, detect the bogey when he began firing on our ships. 2 Man-o-War Cruisers went up in explosions of ignited plasma and clouds of debris. Our warships immediately opened fire. A horde of missiles streaked out towards their intended target. Surely, the beast couldn't survive such a barrage. Fighters launched to counter incoming missiles and others to attack the thing which had the audacity to stand in our way. PD batteries opened fire. The maelstrom was unimaginable. Surely, nothing could survive such withering fire. Yet, the beast survived. Indeed, its shields didn't even seem to notice the pounding we were inflicting, it simply shrugged off the fire like so many gnats. Our fighters bravely broke formation and attacked, they were slaughtered wholesale by the superior PD of the enemy. It's beam fire began slicing through the void of space, ripping apart our warships with deadly accuracy. The guardian's missiles now struck home. Our PD was overwhelmed and a handful of missiles got to their intended targets. Literally half a dozen more cruisers went down. By the time we were ready to launch our second barrage of missiles, a quarter of the Man-o-War class cruisers were destroyed. We fired again, hoping against hope that it's shields were weakened enough for this volley to do damage. We only had one more shot after this. The guardian came swooping down upon us, like a hunter upon its prey. Our missiles struck home, and this time, his shields began to buckle. If only we could keep this up for a few more seconds…
Almost as if sensing our intentions, the Guardian turned it's formidable PD turrets upon the reloading and defenseless missile cruisers. Our own PD cruisers began scoring hits against the guardian's armor, but to no effect. Its skin was thick. Almost a third of ships were destroyed. By the time we reloaded, it was a forgone conclusion. We had lost the battle. Our last wave of fighters and missiles proved ineffective, merely dancing across its shields. The guardian came sweeping in for the kill. To their credit, our crews fought bravely, and died bravely. None fled their fate.

Now, it was personal. The guardian would pay for this, this unspeakable crime against our sovereignty. We would make it pay.

 

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