Battlestar

Artemis

Next

Falling

Posted on 07/21/2019 @ 11:11pm by Lieutenant JG Finn Kidane
Edited on on 07/22/2019 @ 5:50am

Mission: 1 - Twilight
Location: Tauron Space, Course bearing 104 mark 346 toward Zeus
Timeline: MD 01: 2100 Z

In the flickering orange darkness, the air tasted of sweat and burning metal. Finn was numb, save for the throbbing across his left cheekbone, jaw and eye socket. With the dart of his tongue, he tasted the sticky warmth of iron oozing out of his nostril. He'd little time to contemplate the chaos as the last man in straddled past his shoulder. There was a hiss and a jostle- Finn's thin frame wavered like a reed. Then, incredible pressure. Acceleration. Finn felt like his lungs just puddled into his intestines. The blood seeped out of his skull and darkness collapsed in on the shadow behind his eyelids. The last thing he heard was the klaxon- two loud, honking calls before the pressure. The life pod exploded out of the chute.

Finn lost consciousness, and he sunk into fuzzy memories of only a day ago...



He tasted Bodhi's mouth with the soft, high clucks of lips tucking neatly into one another. Finn's broad nose pushed into the cheek below him: Bodhi was a good deal paler than Finn and it showed in his hands. They eased along Finn's neck and then curled themselves into Finn's easily looped curls. With the harsh intake through nostrils, Finn deepened into the subtle flavor of brushed teeth and subtler still, a tang of chicory coffee. He grinned around the kiss, awkwardly so, until their lips broke and Bodhi play-slapped him on the neck. "God, don't... do that!" Finn's features eased around a chuckle which he blocked with the back of his hand.

"Don't do what?" Finn protested. He sighed his bare shoulders at once rising and relaxing.

"Laugh, when I try and stick my..." the blue-eyed Bodhi under him pointed at the pink tongue in his mouth, "In." He sighed, "Is that a Sagittaron thing?"

With a half-lidded gaze and bob of his head, Finn nodded, "Yeah," his nose wrinkled a little at the nose bridge. "But... I'll get used to it. I promise."

"Frakking prude," Bodhi teased. He put his hands behind his head, his eyebrows silently mocking Finn with the way they moved. "No, you won't. Sixteen months in, you still do it." Finn shrugged. Bodhi sighed heavily, laying his wrists against Finn's natural waist. "So, when's your shuttle back to the Cardia?"

Finn looked at his watch, "Thirty minutes. About." Bodhi sighed again. He lifted his hand to play with one of Finn's many, many ringlets. Finn ghosted his finger along the hand's wrist. Bodhi's disappointment was palpable, it always was. He lived with his emotions close to the surface compared to Finn's tendency to play them close to his vest. "Seven more months, then I'm out. I'll just be Reserve."

Bodhi hmphed in both an irreverent but an understanding way. He rolled his eyes, "Seven months is a long frakking time, Kidane. Even with shore leave. When's your next?"

Finn hesitated but finally twisted his mouth from a knot of contention to an answer, "Next month."

"Frak," Bodhi darkly chuckled, bucking under Finn's straddle. "This's what they mean by being a Militia Wife. Or. Partner. Or whatever."

Finn smirked, "Mmm, very subtle," he sarcasmed. Finn leaned down and kissed the blonde under him. "That help?" He asked, coming up to nose to nose.

Bodhi shook his head, "Cheesy, Kidane, very cheesy." He sighed, "Alright. Go. Don't miss your shuttle. Call me when you're back aboard Cardia.". Bodhi moved to sit up- Finn straightened enough that they didn't knock heads but didn't unsaddle himself either. "What?" Bodhi asked with a blink.

Finn chewed his lip with a question, his mouth parting. But in the end, he breathed out a soft, humored sound and shook his head, "Never mind. I'll miss you, Bod'."

Bodhi smirked, "You know what I'll miss?" Finn tilted his head in silent question. Bodhi reached around and cupped the bottom half of Finn's glutes, "This." Finn's face flushed pink, crunching with half laugh, half annoyance. "Get the Frak out of here, Militia. I need to get to work anyway." Finn shrugged and extricated himself from across Bodhi.

"And Finn?" Bodhi's voice stretched. He felt a sharp pain across his face.



"Finn! DRADIS contacts, DRADIS contacts!" In the dingy darkness with a flashing blue light, Finn's eyes flexed on the face that was pinching a hand around his jaw. "Hey! I need you man!" Reality returned.

Finn nodded and squirmed, twisting in the tight confines as he pulled down the screen before him. He flicked it on and immediately it set to pulsing. "DRADIS online. We have thirteen contacts, most of them bearing 213 mark 014. Four more contacts are making a line for Tauron." Finn wearily shrugged, "Or what's left of it."

The man that'd grabbed him settled into the other seat, "Alright, we need to run quiet. Give me a three second burst. Set us a course. Somewhere," their face skewed with annoyance, "Anywhere. Frak."

Finn nodded which made the explosion of the bruise across his jaw and cheek pulse. "Alright setting a course for..." he tapped and tapped again at the map. "Wait, what about here? There's an old decommissioning yard around Zeus. Radamanthus. What about that?"

"It's as good as any place, get me coordinates." The man combed through his thinning hair and shrugged, "Frak, how'd we get to this?"



"Mr. Kidane, set condition one across the ship and get me DRADIS contacts," a debonair looking man with swept back gray hair a neat goatee said. He was fastening his jacket front at the buttons, then gestured at Comm, "Ms. Park, what's our situation?"

The woman sitting at the comm station looked flustered. She was pushing in an earpiece even while trying to make several connections. In the background, Finn Kidane's calm, pleasant voice was announcing, Set condition one. This is not a drill. Order will be forthcoming from the CiC. Repeat. Set condition one. This is not a drill.

"The headquarters at Picon just went dark. We're headless. The last contact we had was seven unidentified Basestar-like vessels entered space and started firing on Picon. Nobody's heard from Nagala yet. But we're looking at four Battlestars lost so far, another eighteen smaller craft."

"DRADIS contact, we have Battlestars Nike and Icarus forming up broadsi-" The DRADIS pinged, and it pinged urgently, Finn's eyes widened, "We have four inbound DRADIS contacts with Cylon signatures. They appear to be Basestars., bearing 215 mark 041. They're..." DRADIS churned again, "Multiple thermonuclear warheads active from Basestars One and Three. They're aiming for the planet."

"Do we have countermeasures?" The Captain asked, twisting to look at the man with thinning hair behind the weapons control console. There was a lot of activity behind him.

The man nodded, "Ready."

The Captain turned to the DRADIS and Finn as his Executive Officer stumbled into the CiC, also fastening her uniform. "Fire countermeasure. Mr. Kidane, get coordinates for Ms. Galway to put us between the Nike and the Icarus.."

"What the frak is going on?" The Executive Officer asked as she moved to the situation table.

"War," the Captain stated with a grim line to his mouth. "Kidane I need that course."

"Feeding it to Helm now, Sir," Finn said. "Thermonuclear warheads are..." he looked at the red symbols on DRADIS, "Fifteen seconds from the exosphere. Countermeasures are on co..." The DRADIS chirped and then warbled, flickering. The Nike disappeared. "I've lost DRADIS contact with the Nike."

"Are they hit?" The Captain asked. Finn was quick to shake his head.

"No, something else. It's like their entire electrical system just went down. Everything. I'm not even getting their positional transponders." The DRADIS sculled again, "They're firing on the Nike. Multiple warheads." The DARDIS swarmed with red contacts as blue-white clicked incrementally to meet them. "Basestars are scrambling some kind of fighters... I've never seen a signature like them before."

On the DRADIS red met blue and the system klaxoned. The symbol matching Nike's last known location completely flickered off. Blue dots met red and cancelled each other out- except for two that arced down toward the planet." Finn's eyes dropped, "We have impact on the outskirts of Hypatia, and in Tyche." He held his breath and raked through his hair, "Battlestar Nike has been destroyed." His voice was a hollow of its normal sound. He shook his head, "Basestars are moving for the planet. The Icarus is scrambling fighters."

"Let’s try and take pressure of the Icarus, we'll mourn the dead later." The lights flickered, the klaxons groaning and stretching. "Mr. Kidane?"

The DRADIS system started to flash red and black, jittering like an old 8-bit system. "We're under some kind of electronic attack," Finn said as he skidded toward the banks of computer nearest the DRADIS. His fingers were swift, his face a frowning concentration. "I've never seen anything like this. It's some kind of Basilisk Hack trying to work its way through our system. It's penetrated our main firewall."

"I've lost weapons control," said the officer there.

"The Helms not responding either."

"Can we switch to our auxiliary backup?" The XO asked. Finn shook his head, his fingers still moving.

"Frak they're fast... anything that has a main connection to the DRADIS computer system is failing. It's using our own network against us." Before Finn could finish, the deck plates lurched from under them, rocked and banked hard. The DRADIS system above the main situational table exploded and crashed into the console below belching orange fire and a shower of sparks. Then it was chaos. In the darkness, the backup sirens wailed- that meant there was an inner hull breach. The sucking, seeping feeling of air toward the main doors was an ominous clue.

Finn found himself fumbling and jostling for an escape pod position. There was shouting amid the cries of the wounded. He tried to climb into the nearest pod, but he felt knuckles crash into his jaw and cheek. The world spun then he felt arms on the other side of him grab him and pull him in a direction.



Finn's aglow face in blue studied the DRADIS. He was still in shock. This couldn't be happening. With a seconds-long burst of blue-white light from the escape pod's thrusters, the pod settled into darkness. Behind them light flashed as the Icarus listed and took three direct shots. Behind it, the alligator portion of the Nike was blackened and shot straight through- it had tilted topside toward the planet, it's hull beginning to glow as it entered the atmosphere. Below that, cloudy mushroom caps of billowing red, brown and white grew like thunderheads in the atmosphere.

The pod slipped into the black and tumbled, toward a pale red dot in the distance. Streaks of white careened past toward the atmosphere, and with flashes they rose new mushroom heads in Tauron's atmosphere.

 

Next

labels_subscribe