The fliers scramble to help out some Canceron pilots.
Location: Isabel Island, Canceron
Related Scenes: None
Plot: Operation: Jungle Fever
Scene Number: 724
Being scrambled from the ground is a new experience for many of Galactica's flyers. Yet that's exactly what happened today, when the CAP (mostly Canceron pilots this shift) encountered a Cylon raiding force bound for the air base. After a flurry of activity, the reaction birds have lifted off from the tarmac and are gaining altitude on their way over the jungle. "CAP's taken out a few, reporting about a dozen remaining. Two of our guys had to pull off from damage - we should pass them limping back on our way out," reports Kallas over the comms.
Eva, having skipped out on the Pilot's shindig of the night before, seems only too happy for any reason to be up in the air and away from the aftermath. She takes off readily enough, drawing up into the point position of the wing, "I'll keep an eye for them, see if we can lay down some covering fire for them if they have any cylons still on their tails." She hits the throttle, moving up to the front of the line.
Danica is in the air after a brief scramble, which includes how to get your EVA suit on when you're full of healing holes. It's becoming a talent worth of resume listing. The Pican Raptor pilot doesn't seem to have much to say on the coms through the takeoff sequence. "...guess we'll see how long the buses stay in the air," says Gopnik, not at all focusing on the bright side of life where Raptor failure is included.
Van's "usual" Viper is down with the jungle rot because of course it is, and so the Picon pilot is flying a Jaguar, the heavy fighter an interesting combination midway between a Viper and a Raptor. Then again, Van is feeling a little bit slower and thicker than usual himself today. The lesser speed means that he has the throttle full-out to keep up with the Vipers and Raptor, and annoyingly, several rather important switches and controls are in different places. And so Van flicks on his nav lights when he's trying to trigger his coms the first time, then clears his throat and finds the right button, "Milkman copies, Smackdown."
The nugget ECO is at her console, quickly looking over information that reflects off the faceplate of her helmet. Isolde is gathering in DRADIS stats, looking over the pings that give her extra information on this Cylon attack group. She listens in to the various check-ins, the former-technician focusing on her job with a stern steadiness. She catches the corner of her lip between her teeth, worrying at it as she glances her pilot's way. "All ready here," she announces, tone helpful if not a bit more serious than expected from the Tauron.
Squeak did not skip out on the shindig. And poor Eva may have had to deal with some of the aftermath. Not the hangover one, but maybe a bit of an overly-affectionate one. Ahem. Niemec downed a good bit of water before they were up in the air. "Copy," she calls over the comms, adjusting her position in the grouping. Towards the rear, with an eye to DRADIS. Even if her ECO is good on the system, themselves.
The forested hills are quite pretty from the air; not so much from the ground. The group does indeed pass two Jaguars on their way back - one trailing smoke and weaving a little on its flight path and the other barely looking scratched from the outside (the pilot is another story). Nobody's on their tails, but the remaining CAP flyers are struggling. Kallas says, "Okay let's go help our guys out."
Eva moves to engage with the incoming cylons, falling into a defensive position up and above Danica's. Would be a terrible thing for the pilot to get herself shot up, although, she sort of stays riding the rails between sickbay and the hangar deck, so your mileage may vary.
Van waggles his own Jaguar's wings at the returning Canceron pilots, running a quick double-check that he remembers where the most important controls in the cockpit are. As the furball ahead comes into view, the Picon Viper pilot draws back on his control stick, "Milkman is going high to get some Potential Energy." Because being able to dive into the fight is a great way to take advantage of a heavier, slower craft. "Rabbit, sing out if you get in trouble." There's a beat pause, and then he adds, "Same goes for everyone else, of course."
"...Look at all the trees down there... just pretending like the forest isn't full of huge bugs...," Dani's head tips slightly to observe the beauty below through her mic. That beauty might be in air quotes. A few buttons pushed and a slight toggle of her stick and her Raptor banks slightly left as she picks out a particular Cylon that she feels the need to murder.
Isolde is pressed into action the moment the DRADIS contacts get into viable range. She twists in her seat, tapping away at her console as she taps into the countermeasures. She hears Van's voice over the coms, and she smirks a bit. "Of course," she repeats, flashing a wry smile to Rabbit before she focuses. "I got three in range, preparing jamming."
"Now come on Gopnik. I'm sure there aren't huge bugs down there. Just billions of tiny ones that you won't notice till they're on you." One can almost hear the grin in Kallas's teasing words. But then he grows quiet, zooming in on one of the Raiders. They pass each other, doing a little damage, and circle back around again.
"Frak!" Rabbit calls over the comm as the Raptor lurches under a hit to the back. "We're okay, but that's gonna leave a mark."
"Scratch one." Eva clears the first cylon engagement, pulling out wide to try to get a better angle on the remaining cylons and their targets. She catches sight of one of the raptors getting hit. It's hard to say which it belongs to, but they took a hit and it's her job to get the fire off of them.
"All the more reason not to get tagged, Gopnik." As the melee envelops the Colonials, Van wing-rolls over and drops down toward Rabbit and Isolde's Raptor and the Cylon after them. "Hang in there, Rabbit." Van twists away from an incoming stream of bullets, then gets a glancing hit across the Raider chasing after Rabbit and Isolde. "Coming..." his words come out as a grunt as the Picon Viper pilot strains against g-forces turning his dive back into a climb, "...back... up... for... another... pass."
Not much over the comms from Niemec nor her ECO. They're focused. Both on tracking the status of the others in the flight and in getting targeting systems online to go.
"Welcome to the kill board, Scratch." Danica's voice over the hot mic in joint self-celebration with her ECO for finally making it to the big boy and girl party. "...so far, so good Milkman," she adds, as she hits a few buttons and banks slightly the other way, squaring up on the one trying to give Van a kiss.
The impact of the Cylon hit jars the Tauron, grabbing hold of the console even while her screen lights up with information. Isolde keeps her focus on the ping of feedback from the ECM, and she reports back, "Two of three... target one countered." Then she tags out of the ECM, activating the controls of the KEW turret. "Switching to guns." She starts to track movement, finding the Cylon that hit them first.
Probably less the kew and more the missile, but who cares. Another cylon explodes into a shower of fire and scrap metal, and the raptor's clear. Eva banks a hard right, coming back around to find her next target. Very little comm chatter from the Hibernian pilot, but considering the cancerons up in the air right now, that might be for the best.
The arrival of the relief force seems to have tipped the scales in the colonials' favor, especially with how fast they're taking down the Toasters. One of the Canceron Jaguars goes up in a fireball though. No parachute. "Keep it up, flight. Hey Rabbit, just because we left the Chief back on the boat doesn't mean you get to scratch up her birds." Rabbit just gives a snarky 'ha ha' to that.
"....that's for punching you in the nose, Milkman," Danica informs Van via comms when her Raptor's KEW takes out the one after Van. There's a slightly gloaty tone to her voice where Picon solidarity is concerned.
Van flares out over the jungle, twisting around the smoking wreckage of a falling Raider, and then comes sweeping back up from beneath the Cylon on Rabbit's tail, KEWs chewing around the edges of his target once more. "Nice shooting." Not for his own hits, of course, but for the solid ones coming from the Raptor's rear turret. Unfortunately, his own flight path is a little too predictable coming out of the yo-yo, and his own tail lines up a shot that skitters off his Jaguar's armor and tears away a few mostly-cosmetic plates. "Woah!" Van twists the stick, rolling out of his new climb and back to level flight, twisting away at a right angle to his previous flight-path, "Yeah, keep it up, Gopnik. Nobody likes bugs, and we don't want to crawl through them to pick you up. No matter how many bandits you blast off my tail." The fireball from one of the local Jaguars causes Van to grimace, however, baring his teeth inside his helmet.
One attack from the toasters grazed across a wing and Niemec? Niemec gave better than she got. A big, solid hit with the missile. She hisses out in satisfaction, drawing up in the wake of it. "Flight, Squeak. How's everyone holding up?"
Eva says, "Still alive."
The flash of the Cylon's shot across the nose of the Raptor has Isolde catching her breath. She is mostly satisfied by the strike from her own missiles, clapping the Cylon back for the hit to her small boat. She responds with the call-ins with a vague, "All here." She nods to Rabbit before she turns her focus back to the Cylon chasing after her and Rabbit.
With so few cylons left, it means that the vipers are able to apply more concentrated fire on each of their targets. The cylon tht had been worrying at Rabbit's tail goes up in flames, and the air is just that much clearer. "Rabbit, how are you two holding up in there?" She banks back around, moving in on the last immediate target. "Smackdown, hos is the other sorte fairing?" The original CAPhat is.
The Raider still trying to punch holes in Rabbit and Isolde's Raptor comes apart under the joint forces of three Colonials, and Van nods in satisfaction, "I think they got hammered pretty hard. I saw one of their birds go up." With only one Raider in the vicinity still in the fight, Van twists his own Jaguar around, aiming to hem the Cylon in so that it can't get a clean shot on the CAG. "Should we bounce them too, Smackdown?"
As if they'd heard Van ask that, the Cancerons manage to bring down two more of the Cylons they were fighting. "Think they've got it under control," Kallas says, "Let's bring this slippery bastard down and then we'll jump in if they need us to help mop up."
"Copy that," Squeak calls in to Kallas, maneuvering her Raptor to evade (if necessary)... and to line up any missiles, as needed. Largely, she's allowing her ECO time to suppress.
The ECO fist-pumps in her own silent achievement -- first Cylon down! Even if she won't officially get the kill. She clears her throat, reporting, "Tail-snooper down." Then she turns back to the countermeasures. "Preparing to jam target six." She continues to wear a small smile as she does.
And there goes another Raider coming apart at the seams. Van veers off, circling up above the rest of the Colonial flight. He waits a moment, then inquires, "Hey Rabbit, Asa just threw up her hands or pumped her fist, didn't she?" Faint amusement flickers into his voice, but then he's scanning the battlefield, looking down to where the Viper's DRADIS display is, and then over to where the display is in the Jaguar he's actually flying. "Milkman is ready to sweep up or clear out as needed, Smackdown, staying high for now."
"That's what you get." That's said more to herseld than anyone else, though it does come over the comms, as the final cylon of this group goes down and she turns in the direction of the canceron pilots still working their way through the remaining cylons. "Shall we mosey over, Smackdown?"
Soon after the Wolfpack downs the last Raptor, so do their Canceron brothers and sisters. "Thanks for the assist, Wolfpack," says the Canceron flight leader over the general comms. "Anytime," Kallas replies. "Let's head back to the barn people."
At the all clear, Niemec lets out a long sigh. "Great." It's actually a genuine word. "Copy, Smackdown. Heading home." She pulls the Raptor around, angling back to Edson.
"It's like coming to a party and finding out that you came just as they were about to send everyone home." Still, Eva does as she's ordered, and turns back to return to the Base. "So what was that you said earlier, Gopnik? You want to go exploring to see all the interesting jungle flora and fauna?"
"Least we got to dance a few times before the party ended," Kallas points out, chuckling at Eva's remark to Danica before turning his bird back to the base.
"I don't rat out my ECOs, Milkman," Rabbit says with a chuckle.
The nugget ECO blushes slightly when Van calls her response. She looks at Rabbit to see if he confirms his ECO's celebration manuever, and then she taps on the comms. "No one likes a know-it-all, Newton." Then she nods to Kallas, even if he can't see it, and resumes her guardianship of DRADIS while they make the turn around to head back home.
Van gives the Cancerons a waggle of his Jaguar's wings at their comm call, "Milkman copies, RTB." Returning to base. "And I'm with Smackdown, Cherry. I'd rather have a couple of quick dances and close down the party than get smacked around the mosh pit every time." Isolde's response--and Rabbit's--get a faint chuckle from Van as he pulls his heavy fighter around into a top-cover position over the formation, "Nothing wrong with a know-it-all. Not one thing at all."