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The Battle Ends...

Posted on 21 Mar 2017 @ 2:19pm by Captain Harvey Geisler & Commander Thiago Teixeira & Lieutenant JG Felix Langston & Lieutenant JG Michael Griffin & Lieutenant JG Catherine Cooper

Mission: Endgame
Location: USS Black Hawk || Auxiliary Bridge
Timeline: MD 17 || 1025

Though the Black Hawk's shields had been raised again, the massive Regula-Class Starbase continued its phaser assault on the tiny Akira-class starship. Her weakened shields sparkled with every impact as the ship rattled on the inside, causing further damage to the Veteran Warrior.

If a ship could possess such an emotion as human pride, she would have proudly and defiantly stood in front of Deep Space Eleven and delivered a firm single-digit gesture with the right hand all while maneuvering around and firing back at her attackers.

Reality, however, told a very different story. Consortium ships were still flying about, remaining a thorn in Starfleet's side and would not rest until every ship on either side had been eliminated.

Cooper kept firing, alternating targets, trying to keep the worst off of them as they attempted to dodge. She was chained to her post and, at this point, half expected to die there. She didn't stop, slow down down, or worry. It was aim, fire, aim, fire as she did her part to buy them what time she could. She was a bit suprised the Captain had left the bridge, figured he would send the xo. She had wanted to go as well but didn't dare stop her assaults, as her hands moved over the controls.

Incredulous that Geisler would leave in the middle of battle, Teixeira didn't have time to do anything about the Captain's departure. Instead, he found himself in command of the Black Hawk.

"Engineering!" he shouted over the open comm, "keep those shields up or we're all dead. Best facing towards Eleven, helm." He looked towards Tactical. "Cooper, you just keep doing what you're doing."

Cooper replied, "bloody their noses aye...". She redoubled her efforts thanking every god they still had teeth even as she wished they would stop rattling the Black Hawk's quite so much. She focused on the weapons of the station, switching smoothly from that to other targets as needs be while the Black Haek continued to dodge enemy fire.

Michael was struggling to make sense of the various reports as they came in when the communication from the bridge arrived.

"We're doing everything we can down here, Commander" Michael replied as he rapidly gave orders to various members of the Engineering team. Things were rapidly looking worse as more and more systems were reaching the critical point. In many ways it was surprising the ship even lasted this long but it was a testament to her resilience.

"Keep at it!" Thiago shouted over the comm.

"Affirmative, sir" Michael responded before opting to take the organizational side of things on the move and decided to get his own hands dirty to give the ship every last bit it had.

He watched the tactical display. There were too many Consortium ships for his liking. That the remaining ships were an Akira, a Sovereign, and pieces of a Prometheus made the Brazilian even less thrilled. "Have the Cochrane and Valcour make runs on the Hastings," he ordered the Trill science officer. "Have them approach from the aft. The Hawk and Callisto need to disable the Sovereign."

Assisted by cover fire from the starbase, the remainder of the Prometheus-Class USS Agamemnon took up formation on the Black Hawk's left flank. Lance after lance departed the two portions of ship and struck the same point in the Black Hawk's shields at the joint where the port strut connected with the weapons pod. Most of the Akira's strength was contained in that weapons pod, and if it went, so did most of the Black Hawk's ability to defend itself.

Cooper was being forced to divide her fire between the station and the Agamemnon, the weapons lock shifting smoothly from one to the other with torpedoes as needed. She caught the status of the shields on her console and called to the XO, "Sir! The the Agamemnon found a sweet spot on our shields over the weapons pod, trying to shake them loose but they're like a dog with a bone..." She warned, hatred and a grudging respect in her voice. They were evil but they were good at what they did. As great as it would be evil isn't dumb. Cooper locked on a pair of torpedoes on the Agamemnon firing even as she tried to take out the Starbases weapons with phasers.

The Agamemnon absorbed the hits, though the secondary hull's shields began to buckle. In addition to their phaser blasts, photon torpedoes were launched at the Black Hawk, hoping to further weaken their shields.

"Aft quarter shields down to thirty percent!" shouted the Ops officer. "We can't take much more fire back there!"

"Griffin!" Teixeira roared, "shields! I don't care what you have to do!"

As fast as he could Michael rushed to get as many systems as the ship could do without disabled to have their power go to the shields instead. Something not made easier by the state of the EPS grid. It was a small miracle but in the end he did manage to get the power to the shields for it to stand a few more blasts. "This should keep her going a while longer Commander but any more damage and we might have a widespread systems failure"

"Langston, keep us moving. Move us back from Eleven. If we can get out of range....." Before he could finish, the ship rocked again. He knew something was wrong instantly. The jolting was different than before. He'd felt it before though.

"They got through our shields! Hull breach. They breached the pylon," the Ops officer reported.

Teixeira couldn't stop himself. "Filho da puta!" he blurted out. It wasn't his style to use coarse language, but this situation called for it. He didn't know if they were going to get out of this alive.

"Have the..." He stopped as he watched the two remaining pieces of the Agamemnon light up and then explode. In the debris, an Argonaut-class saucer could be seen.

"The Hawk...," the Ops officer said quietly.

Knowing they didn't have time to waste, Thiago began giving more orders. "Have the other ships form up on us. We're going to need them if that pod goes dead. Try to keep our weapons trained on Eleven."

"Aye focusing full attention on 11" She replied anger and frustration coursing through every fiber of her being, she fired full phasers and the proper spread of torpedoes at the station in 'use it or lose it' mode. She could almost hear the ticking of time before something happened to their pod. She prepped the next salvo ready to hit them again and again, she would press on until called off. Her hands flying over the console and her eyes trained on the readouts like they held the meaning of life. And for Cooper, in this moment, they did.

As the remainder of the Starfleet ships moved towards the Black Hawk, the Hastings and Sovereign followed. The Cochrane fired a volley of torpedoes from it's aft launcher. Two of them struck the Hastings, impacting with it's deflector dish. The ship slowed, multiple hull breaches appearing. But before it stopped dead, it launched a barrage of it's own, broadsiding the Valcour. Helpless, the assembled officers on the bridge watched the Intrepid class ship spin out of control before pieces of the secondary hull broke off.

"The Consortium is just down to the Sovereign," reported the Ops technician. "The Callisto reports that her shields are gone, and hull integrity at sixty percent." Another message came through the ensign's station and he took a moment to read it. "Report from the O'Carroll, sir. They're still engaged with Consortium forces at their position. No reinforcements can be spared and we're to push on until our boarding parties achieve the objective."

The Black Hawk was still taking fire from the starbase. The other two ships in the flotilla were moving to take position near them.

"Keep firing on that station!" he ordered. "We need to disable them." Teixeira looked towards Ops. "Find some power nodes. Something... Then give the coordinates to tactical."

"Aye, sir," replied the ensign. Wiping the sweat off his brow, he immediately used every scanning method at his disposal examine the mighty starbase. "Here's something," he said at last to Lieutenant Cooper and sent the coordinates for the primary power generator to her console.

"Receiving new telemetry aye, updating firing solution, full on" She said. As soon as the data hit her console she acted on it, her hands quickly flowing and sending the Black Hawks bloody defiance into the teeth of their enemy.

Felix kept a steely eye on the view screen, feeling the ship rollicking with every hit. It was getting more and more impossible to dodge the oncoming fire and line up tactical's optimal firing solution. He felt the Black Hawk straining more and more with each maneuver he pulled.

The ships jolted again, this time from a barrage of fire from the Sovereign. Thiago watched as the Callisto changed course and made a run on the more powerful ship. The Callisto launched a salvo of torpedoes while phaser beams lanced out and danced on the Sovereign's shields. The Sovereign gracefully banked and laid into the Luna-class ship.

"Have the Cochrane....," Teixeira began, but it was too late. The Luna-class starship had taken too many hits already. Thiago was forced to watch as the Callisto went dark. The Consortium controlled Sovereign wasted no time; a volley of torpedoes raced forward and struck the powerless Luna-class. As the Callisto exploded, Thiago watched in horror.

"Hull breaches, Decks Six, Seven and Eight!" shouted the ensign. "Emergency forcefields are holding, but four sections are exposed to space. Structural integrity is down to seventy percent."

"Engineering!" Teixeira desperately needed a status report from the engine room.

"Most of the ship is beyond repair and the power is only barely functional still, at this point systems failure can happen at any moment"

The ship was continually buffeted. His focus was on the displays in front of him. The reports from the crew around him were muffled, as if he were underwater.

Another jolt. Sparks flew. The readouts weren't good. He tried to figure a way forward. A way to win.

A console exploded. An acrid smell hung in the air. Environmental must be offline.

A jerk to starboard. Artificial gravity gave out momentarily. Thiago heard himself order Cooper to continue firing on the Starbase.

The Cochrane was limping on the screen. The Sovereign continued it's assault. He'd grown attached to the Intrepid-class Cochrane during his short stint in command. It reminded him of the USS Blackthorne, the first ship he'd served on as Executive Officer.

A torpedo impact could be felt. The power fluctuated. You can save them!

The deck pitched out from underneath him. As he pulled himself to his feet, he looked at the Master Systems Display. One of the catamarans was nearly completely severed from the saucer. We're not getting out of this.

Another series of phaser hits. At least not alive.

The emergency lights went out. The makeshift bridge was now lit solely by the dim glow of the consoles. You can save them.

The room came into focus. He could hear the voices around him clearly again.

"Teixeira to all hands. Abandon ship."

Cooper had grabbed at her console with all the stubbornness in her soul as a jolted knocked her down to regain control, she had continued to fire as the bridge sparked and smoked around her. She didn't feel it would be long now, regrets flowed in the back of her mind that she pushed away because as long as she had a working console she was going to make them pay. Then the power went out and she fought to get the console to respond. So focused was she it took a second for the XO's words to penetrate her mind. For a wild moment her first thought was could she get to a shuttle to continuing blasting them then training took over, she glanced around the bridge. In her adrenaline filled sight it seemed it was minutes when in reality it was but a second. The flashing emergency lights, smoke, the sparking consoles. The CO and XO standing there, the moment was etched in her mind. For the first time since it all began she willingly took her hands off the now useless console, she wanted to stay but duty didn't always allow you to do what you wanted, she had orders and people to help get off their flaming home. It was with a sense of reluctance that she left the bridge the most complex of her emotions held at bay by the new overreaching goal of getting as many off as possible even as she hoped they'd been able to do enough to make this all worth it.

Felix looked back at the Commander, eyes wide in shock and mouth agape. He rarely dropped his icy demeanor at the helm, but this was a rare occasion. Time seemed to slow around him as the words registered. Abandon ship. Abandon the place he'd grown to call home. Abandon the fight. Felix looked down toward his console. "Sorry, old girl," he whispered, "I guess we weren't fast enough."

Michael punched a console as he heard the Command, they had failed to keep the ship going despite their best efforts. A ship that had survived so much was set to meet its ultimate demise here. As he looked over the Engine Room one more time he called out to the others. "You heard the man, abandon ship" Michael would stay until everyone else had left the area to make sure no person was left behind.

Harvey had returned to the bridge just as a severe hit struck the Black Hawk, sending the entire occupancy of the bridge off their feet. The Captain had been unprepared for the jolt, striking his head on the open doorframe as he entered. He went down immediately, disoriented by another jolt to the hull.

The Captain laid on the floor in a daze for what seemed like an eternity. The lights in the bridge had gone out and Harvey struggled not just to focus, but bring himself back to reality.

Finally he managed to stand. Before he could ask for a report, he heard the words from Thiago's mouth.

What?

Harvey wanted to shout and belay that order. His eyes caught the flickering Master Situational Display. The damage was unmistakable and irrefutable. Their colleagues didn't have the chance to do what was now available to this crew; a chance to leave and fight another day.

As the evacuation sirens began to sound, Harvey looked at the viewscreen and gulped. Though it too was flickering, it was impossible to notice that New Bajor was growing rather quickly in front of them.

The ship wasn't just about to give her last breath.

She was doomed to crash on the burning capitol below.


~To Be Concluded~

 

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