Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Bashed - Fan Fiction

At the weekend we bashed a POS and it's defending fleet (OK, so this was 3rd time and they'd spanked us twice before). Anyway this time it went better. We were not really interested in the POS, we just wanted the fight - http://sotf.eve-kill.net/?a=kill_related&kll_id=12486389

I assume, like capsuleer ships, POS's have a limited crew in there to keep things ticking over. I wonder what it was like for them....


"What's the Stront levels now?"

"17.5 units remaining"

Chief Engineer Karlee quickly did the calculations in her head. Just over two and a half minutes before the fuel ran out and the shield reinforcement would be down. That would leaving just what was left of the standard shielding, which was already well hammered, and the control towers armour between them and whatever was coming.

"May be they won't come. They've been beaten back last two times they tried" one of the technicians suggested.

"Oh they'll come. And each time they try they end up knowing our tactics better than before."

A large crack sounded from above above followed by a shower of sparks.

"Re-route that conduit" shouted over the noise pointing at the now swinging cable.

As with any Minmatar construct, the large control tower had frequent maintenance problems. However currently they were having more than usual. 14 hours earlier an enemy fleet had turned up and attacked the control tower. It had taken a real pounding and the engineers were having to work hard to keep the systems running. That attack had stopped as the shields started to fail and the strontium clathrates reactor kicked in. This provided a massive boost to the shields and made them pretty much invulnerable. However, the reactor burnt fuel at a massive rate and once started it couldn't be stopped or refueled. You could only let it run it's course. The real problem was re-harmonising the reactor with the towers shields after refueling it. The shields needed to be above 50% to get the  strontium clathrates reinforcement reactor back online. Their shields were not even 20%.

"Spike in local."



Karlee rushed over to a console.

"They are here. 30 mixed battleships. Mostly Abaddons, few Dominix and the odd Megathron. No logistics though. They are in warp."

The engineering crew went over to the viewports in the wall. Through the shimmer of the shield they could see the fleet of huge battleships dropping out of warp.

"Yes! No logistics. Our defense fleet is going to rip them apart Chief Engineer, right?"

Karlee looked at the fleet. It didn't make sense to bring that sort of fleet without logisitcs.

"Well it...." Karlee suddenly stopped "Cyno!"

A bright red energy field was being projected from one of the ships. A cynosural field that allowed capital ships to lock onto the co-ordinates and use their jump drives to travel instantaneously to the location through artificial wormholes. Suddenly two Archon class carriers appeared in flashes of light. The engineering bay went quiet. The silence was interrupted by an alarm sounding.

"They are shooting one of the defense guns."

The engineering crew watched the battleship fleet engage the static defenses around the tower one at a time. The light show was rather spectacular. Laser fire lit up the space around the huge shimmering shield bubble. Some of the Minmatar battleships were launching torpedoes. The huge missiles slowly lumbering towards their target alongside the bright laser beams.

After 10 minutes the number of active guns achoured around the shields was dwindling. Karlee was checking the shield levels. Without a carrier or logistics of their own to repair the shield, it would take far too long for the shields to passively recharge back to 50%. The Stront reactor was not an option. The attacking fleet would need to be beaten back.

Suddenly the tower rocked. Sparks flew in engineering and one of the technicians who was working high on the conduit fell from the walkway. Karlee watched him fall as if it was slow motion, turning her head at the last moment. She still heard the sickening crunch as he hit the floor.

"Cheif, the good guys are here!"

Karlee looked out the viewport. The defense fleet had arrived. Whilst mostly consisting of smaller battlecruisers with some battleships, they had logistics which would repair the shields of any friendly ship under attack. The aggressors stopped firing on the the towers shields and turned their guns on the defense fleet. A massive fire fight started between the two fleets.

"Wow look at their Dominix's pop. This is going to be over quick" one technician shouted happily. He was right, whilst the defense fleet had smaller ships, the combined firepower was taking down the Dominix class battleships in the attacking fleet quickly.

"2nd Cyno!"

Karlee had expected this wasn't everything that the attackers were going to field and she hated being right. Two more Archon class carriers appeared on field, followed by another two dozen battleships.

"What in Divinities Edge are they!"

Karlee cupped her hands to the viewport to block out the glare.

"They are faction issue ships. Macharial and Navy Issue Apocalypse, they are battleships, but battleships with huge fire power."

As always, Karlee started to run the numbers. It didn't look good. The attacking fleet had too much firepower, and four carriers could issue significant repairs from range. Their defense fleet could not hope to target and destroy a heavily armoured battleship before the carriers had the remote repair modules activated.

The first engagement was short.

"The defence fleet is pulling back! They are abandoning us!"

Karlee knew she had to act fast, this could cause panic and crew could start abandoning the tower. Although the tower was mostly mechanised, the small crew was still essential to the running of the systems. Life on a control tower was cramped, there was less space than on a normal starship and the entertainment facilities were limited. But the pay was good and most only signed on for a 6-month rotation.

"They are not abandoning us! They will be going to reship. They need more firepower! There is no rush, our shields are still OK and we've got a full compliment of armour. There is plenty of time. We've got home-field advantage remember."

That appeared to calm the panicky engineering crew.

The crew watched the defense fleet return with Tornado class battlecruisers and some battleships. The fight went the same way. The enemy carriers kept their fleet alive whilst the awesome firepower of the 50 or so hostile battleships tore through the defense fleet one at a time.

For a second time the defense fleet fell back.

"Now they are retreating! NOW we're in trouble" Senior Tech Smyth sounded aggressive. Karlee knew this would be trouble.

"No. They will be re-shipping again and trying a different tactic. If I was the FC 'd be back at close range. Obvious their ranged fire-power is too great"

"Oh the grease monkey in charge of half a control tower is now an egger fleet commander!" Technician 2nd Class Smyth was a hulk of a man. Having worked in heavy engineering all of his life. He was also a known trouble maker.

"Exactly why are we still here waiting to die in the cold vacuum of space. Miss FC Sir? Why haven't we abandoned this doomed tower like the defense fleet has.... twice? You might want to die. We don't!"

Karlee didn't need this. Smyth was slowly approaching her, his chest puffed out. He was looking for an excuse. He carried a large wrench swinging loosely in his right hand. If he overpowered her the crew would run to the escape pods, the tower would certainly be lost. Karlee simply drew her sidearm at lighting fast speed and shot Smyth in the chest. He fell to his knees with a look of shock on his face before falling face first onto the floor.

"Anyone else?" nobody dared breathe "Good! Now come on people, we've been here before, lets hold it together! Nobody is going anywhere until the last possible second. We will keep this tower running!"

Karlee went back to the viewport just in time to see the defense fleet arrive for the third time. She was right, this time they had come in at close range, probably after refitting their weapons to something appropriate for such an engagement. After two minutes it was clear that the tactic wasn't working either. Even at that close range, the attacking fleet was still able to deal massive damage and the defense fleet couldn't break the carrier reps. For the third time the defense fleet pulled back.

The engineering bay went silent. All eyes were on Kaylee. She now didn't have anything for them. It was unlikely the defense fleet would try a fourth time. There was no point. The attacking fleet had superior numbers, superior firepower and superior logistics. The defense fleet had lost too many ships, the financial loss of the tower would pale into insignificance against the loss of ships they had already suffered.

The tower shook as the attacking fleet opened up against their shields. Another power conduit broke free. It swung down hitting Technician Marary in the back. Bright blue sparks flew as their body convulsed. The sparks ignited a gas, probably oxygen leaking from a nearby pipe.

The other crew froze in horror as a fireball engulfed the poor technician. Karlee rushed over to another console and rerouted the power and isolated the nearby oxygen pipes. The sparks stopped and the charred, blacked body of Marary finally fell to the floor smoking. Of the 12 crew in engineering, Karlee had lost two and killed one herself.

"Back to your stations! NOW!"

The Engineering crew paused.

"NOW!" she reached for her gun again.

Reluctantly they returned to their stations. Karlee knew what they were thinking. If the capsuleers had effectively abandoned this small outpost, they shouldn't they. The control tower had sufficient escape pods for all of them. But Karlee couldn't order the evacuation whilst the control tower still had some shields and a full compliment of armour, it wasn't in her nature just to quit.

She was trying to divert axillary power to the shields when she noticed movement in the corner of her eye. High above on one of the gangways a young technician was edging to an escape pod. She drew her sidearm for the second time.

"DON'T DO IT" she yelled. The other crew all stopped and looked.

The technician paused, he looked terrified, he suddenly bolted for the hatch. Karlee fired once and the shot caught him in the upper leg. He fell from the gangway.

Karlee never saw the large wrench swung against the back of her head.

40 minutes later she started to come around. She was laying on the floor of engineering face down. Her head was throbbing. She struggled to her feet. Engineering had been abandoned. Smoke and fires were everywhere. She looked at the console. Shields and armour had gone, and structural integrity was down to 34%. The tower groaned under the sustained firepower of the attacking fleet. She looked at the scanner logs, they showed nothing of any defense fleet returning whilst she had been unconscious.

See scanned the tower for life signs. There were none and this is not surprising. Whole sections of the tower had been depressurised and fires were raging in those that still had atmosphere. She checked the inventory, most of the escape pods had gone. She started to get worried. Karlee started to plot possible routes from engineering to the escape pods still remaining. Each way was blocked by fire, hazards or the cold vacuum of space. She saw there was only one she could physically get to, the escape pod in the engineering cargo room. However the radiation levels in the room were far too high. The uranium fuel stored there had been split open by an explosion. It would take her 20 seconds to cross the bay to the hatch. The radiation levels would give a fatal dose in 5.

There was another series of explosions as the enemy fleet continued to pound the tower. The structural integrity alarm went off. The tower was dying. Karlee considered her options. She could get to that escape pod, but she'd be glowing by the time she was recovered, a slow painful death by radiation poisoning didn't sound fun. She could just sit down. It would all be over in a minute. However death in the cold vacuum of space was supposed to be horrific. Lungs bursting, your outer flesh flash freezing whilst your blood boils.

"Option 3 I suppose" she said out loud with resignation.

She went to draw her side-arm but it was missing. The crew must have taken it in case she came around before they had got away.

Karlee looked up as she heard metal groaning and hissing. Far above her she could see the metal wall starting to deform and blister. Suddenly a huge shard of light broke through and disappeared. A hiss of escaping atmosphere was cut short as a containment forcefield automatically sealed the breach.

Karlee slumped down by the console facing the wall. Suddenly there were dozens of areas where the wall was blistering from laser fire striking the other side. She pulled out a cigarette, lit it and look a long drag.

Several sections of the hull gave way at the same time. Engineering was lit up in an array of bright light as laser beams criss-crossed each other. If Karlee could have seen it in all it's splendour she might have thought it was a beautiful ending.



  1. Great little story mate - it was about time that defence fleet got beaten!

  2. Excellent write-up - I never thought of imagining the crew operations inside the Control Tower, but you nailed it.