The Evon Experience
by Alex Poff
Chapter 16 The Liberation and Destruction
Indeed, many cycles past before Loban was ready to order the Northern Fleet, mobilizing in Ognath, to push on and liberate the Alkari in Laan. Our sensors only indicated the presence of some thirty odd ships, but at least we were finally able to determine that the engine signatures we were picking up were from system ships only, not warp capable craft. It was obvious that the Laaran were somehow able to mask the warp signature from our scans. Knowing this, Labon was completely certain that a full ten TF fleet would be awaiting our arrival. The numbers would be even, save for any additional Orbital stations that protected the individual planets. It was going to come down to tactics, skill and weapon choice. Labon was confident that his Northern Fleet commanders would be up to the challenge.
Our initial assault force was made up of the following ship type and size:
Two Battleship IF TF's.
Two Battleship LR TF's.
Two Dreadnought CF TF's.
Three Dreadnought IF TF's.
One Battleship Troop Transport TF comprised of additional IF ships to bring it up to full complement.
We were going after Laan VI first, the home of the Alkari. The assault plan was simple; to liberate our friends first, to conquer and enslave as many of the remaining planets as was possible based on our limited supply of troop transports second, and to glass completely and then re-colonize with our own subjects any remaining planets third. Labon had coordinated with his Northern Fleet commander (Labon's previous 1st Officer) Hektar, that a constant re-supply of TF's, both fighting and troop, would be continually sent to Laan from Ognath as long as the production chain could keep them coming. To war...
Our opening assault on Laan was easily the bloodiest battle in our history. Labon had been correct, a full ten TF fleet was waiting for us the moment we exited the jump lane into the system. Had we not taken the time to develop a full fleet comprised predominantly of Dreadnought class vessels, the battle surely would have been lost. It seemed as if space itself would ignite with the sheer number of missiles, fighters and various types of beam weaponry that was employed.
Our two LR TF's charged the planetary defenses (multiple orbital stations were enabled) in an effort to keep the staggering number of inbound missiles down to a level that our PD weaponry could handle. Our IF and CF TF's flew to engage the Laaran fleet, and Hektar was certain that the hull capacity of our Dreadnoughts was the edge that won the day. The sheer number of missiles we were able to launch, followed up by squadron after squadron of our best fighters, simply overwhelmed the silicoid PD. When the smoke had cleared, we had lost both our LR TF's plus our two remaining Battleship IF TF's, and had sustained some minimal losses in our Dreadnought TF's, but the sky, at least momentarily, was clear. Hektar gazed at the beautiful sight that was Laan VI. He gave the order to Sasktewel. "Land your troops."
Sasktewel had been waiting for this moment. It was, as he recalled, the initial reason his appointment and office had come to be, many, many years ago. He was not about to let his commander down now. It was Sasktewel's and the Rhean people’s finest hour. Once again, as on Ognath, the silicoid armies melted like butter in a hot skillet. Sasktewel men took no prisoners and granted no quarter; they had to pay for their crimes against the Alkari. The battle for the planet lasted less than twenty-four hours. The Alkari were liberated and "rock-free". What remained of their civilian government expressed their deepest gratitude and eternal allegiance to our Empire. If only Lotar had lived to see the day, but perhaps, he might not have wanted to.