The air wing clears the way for assaults in northern Kannur by going after some air defense batteries.
Location: Kannur Province, Canceron
Related Scenes: None
Scene Number: 760
Colonel Ryan gave his rah-rah speech earlier today, announcing the start of offensive operations against the Cylon forces in northern Kannur province. (bbread 6/27 if you missed it) Mission briefings were conducted a couple hours later, and then preparations began. Individual team mission briefings were given a couple hours later. This group, under the command of Major Webb, has been selected to take out the air defenses to clear the way for the Canceron forces coming in behind them.
There are three separate air defense batteries they're going after, separated by a few miles. It's expected that they'll have surprise when they hit the first one, but the Cylons will likely be ready for them at the later two. Expect to encounter Cylon alert fighters at the later targets.
The ships are ready on the landing deck, last-minute checks as they prepare to launch.
Tucker already knows the area they're heading to, he dropped off a recon team there a few days ago to map the targets. Once the briefing was over, the raptor jock headed down to his bus to load up, giving a quick thumbs up to his ECO as he starts to run down the pilot's checklist and fires up the Raptor for launch once the Vipers are clear of the deck to start the descent towards Aerilon and their targets.
Eva was one of the first on the line, having been assigned to fly in the advance guard, the front line protecting the raptors and providing covering fire for rest of the vipers. She's waiting, mostly patiently, as she waits for the ship to be given the clearance to launch.
Salvae 'Socks' Gess inspects his viper on the landing deck, going over a few last minute things with his deck officer. "Lookin good, Chief!" he says, giving the ship a pat on the nose before climbing up into the cockpit. He straps in, and gets help with his helmet. An actual mission has him excited, before it was kind of a surprise, but knowing what's coming has his nerves going this time.
It was almost a personal stake, Canceron being her home colony and all and Delilah 'Pixie' Abner was relieved to be selected for the mission. Running through her last minute checks, she finds all systems go for launch. Minus the tube of course, but she'd had plenty of practice by now to get used to it again. Hand on her stick, she wears a half smile, completely in her element, head bobbing to some music only she can hear in her head.
Finally, an active combat mission against the Cylons where they will be taking it to them instead of just hoping to run into a few groups here and there on the ground while they are flying Combat Air Patrols. The young Ensign has been tapped to be one of the Viper pilots tonight, having already had action against the toasters on the ground and in the air. Strapped in, he has already finished the checklist with the deckie that was assigned to him plane. With all systems green, he is ready to go.
It seems Gwyndolen has barely arrived before she's called in action, but it doesn't seem to bother her at all. She's calm and collected as she goes over her last minute checks. New location, she knows her planes.
On the ship, he kept to himself mostly, a strong focus on objectives. He'd been more quiet with the announcement. Giving a look over other vipers down the line, he moves to his own as well. A nod at most to anyone that looks his way, but that set to his gait, he's after one thing. Toasters. With a stiff lip he heads for his own, getting in, and running any last minute systems checks. Captain Griffin 'Coach' Pavlis sits steady and ready. No jitter movies of adrenaline ready to go, just that focus.
Calliope is on a bus. Well, a Raptor. She's strapped into the pilots seat, flying in formation a little back from the Vipers, ready to rock. "Flight..." Except for this. She cringes as she says, "...Soundbite..." Into the comms. She grits her teeth and presses on. "...taking up covering positions initially. Will warm missiles for engagement when we're into it."
Cap is up in the saddle already, doing her final checks, glancing out over the edge of her still-open cockpit to give the deckhand below a thumbs up when everything passes. She settles in a moment later, and as the canopy comes down, settles into her own final pre-flight routine. This has less to do with instruments and more personal ritual. A new face has been added to the constellation of photographs taped across the top of her dash. The latest was a little effort rustling up - no one thinks of these things ahead of time - but joins her brother, grandfather, and others who watch over her.
Cueing up his own radio, the sound of calming piano music playing in the cabin for a moment before Tucker turns it down, and speaks up. "Soundbite, Flats. Sounding good to me. Will on your wing, lead us to the promised land, Vipers." he says with a small chuckle as he moves to fall into line.
Roara is grim-faced as she pulls her helmet of her flight suit down over her head and secures herself in the cockpit. Launch tubes be damned, her Viper cuts up into the air to take up a foremost position in the flight formation. She doesn't have any photographs on her dash. Too slipper of a slope.
Calliope makes an "Ugh" sound at Isolde in her backseat, after uttering her new callsign to the masses over the radio. "I am going to choke on that every frakking time." She sighs. But at least she keeps her sighing off the general line. "How's it looking back there, Pi? Warm up the jammers. I want us to add some confusion out there when we get into this."
Webb is not one for rah rah speeches, unlike the Timber Wolves commander. After the briefing he just gave a brisk, "Shoot straight and come home." Once he gets the green light from the deck, he calls over the radio, "Righto, let's get to it." The deck crew clears off, the landing bay is depressurized, and the birds start launching one by one. Webb leads the way off the Vanguard's deck, angling his nose down to the planet.
Once the signal for his turn to launch is given, Kell elevates his bird slightly so the skids are off of the flight deck and then the engines roar out as he increases the thrust of his Viper. He coasts out of the Vanguard's modified launch bay and once into the vast openess of space, he pushes the thrust lever all the way forward, feeling the gees pushing him into his seat for a moment as he gets up to speed to join up with the other Vipers in formation. His gaze looks out of his Viper's canopy and then down at DRADIS, seeing that for this first operation, they are definitely out in force tonight. Full of confidence, Razor descends down into the atmosphere with the others.
Eva only waits for the CAG's order, before she moves her ship into the line and launches on the appointed signal, forming up with the rest of the vipers, flying forward, as the ships arrow down towards the atmosphere.
Gwyndolen settles into her cockpit with ease, as if she's coming home, settling into her element. No comm chatter for her; she's listening and taking the measure of her new teammates. No music either, but as she launches her Viper into space, she hums to herself, the swooping tune of a dance.
"I'm sure it is said with a note of endearment." Isolde brightens as she looks up toward Calliope. Then she returns to her console, and scans over the incoming data. She nods at the recommendation. "I do like my counter-measures." She stretches her toes in her boots, and then wriggles her fingers. "You know, you just should embrace it. Make a real soundbite of it!"
Lifting and launching with the group, Coach sticks to the plan. Seeing some jockeying, he'll call out in general. "Stick to formation, not the day for show boating, focus on the mission." Once they clear the hanger and head towards planet, he calls out, "You there Pixie?" As he double checks the panels as a secondary check and returns to that focus.
Just so happens when the order is given, the go, Delilah does just that. It's not as smooth as she hoped but it was pretty damned straight. Falling in with Griffin, she calls out over the com. "Coach, Pixie, Copy. Got your wing, lead on."
Pulled back into his seat at his viper takes off, Salvae grins as he looks down at his dradis, "Oh, lookie here, the dradis is workin this time!" Pleased with his fortunes, he forms up with the rest of the air wing and tips down towards the planet. As the viper pushes into the atmosphere, flames blasting off of its nose until it slows to reasonable speeds.
At least there's no rush here, so the Vipers have all the time to do their orderly little launches, one after the next. Cap sits awaiting her turn, and then lifts off. Without pressure, it's just a quick tap on the maneuvering thrusters to push off the deck and then she pushes the stick forward to fire up the main thrusters. "Babyface, launching." Out in space, she follows the flight downward, awaiting - somewhat excitedly - that moment where they hit atmosphere. It's always nice to be back where she started.
"Babyface, Hammerhead. On me," Roara tests her reverse thrusters, decelerating her Viper after shooting up into the air. There's a certain tension in her tone a voice, like now she's determined to keep Cap alive. Gee, wonder why! Her plane gives a familiar little back-and-forth waggle.
It only takes about fifteen minutes for the ships to descend through Canceron's atmosphere - one of the benefits of having a shift in geosynch orbit right above the region. "Righto, coming up on the target area now," Webb says. "Let's try not to make out with any trees." It is a heavily forested area, the defenses set up in a clearing. The first set of AA emplacements show up right where the marines said they'd be. And so far not a Cylon in the sky to meet them.
It doesn't take long for the ships to breach atmo and find their targets, Eva diving in to attack the one she came in closest to. Here goes nothing. A hand reaches out, touching the leonis flag attached to her cockpit control panel. That is all.
"Copy that, Spider," Socks answers, his viper whipping across the landscape, its speed pulling with it the treetops, leaves and one or two birds along the way. "I'm getting pinged! Contact! Contact! AckAck has spotted us!"
As soon as they hit atmo, Tucker's ECO is calling out the passive pinging of the anti-air batteries. "We have tone!" Tucker nods solemnly. "I hear them singing. Nasty tune at that, let's see about shooing them off the stage." he responds as he brings up the missiles and starts to make his first pass over the area. "Fox-2!" he calls out as he depresses the trigger to let the missile drop and streak towards target.
One the wing of the Coach, Pixie goes where he goes, her own hand steady on the stick, ready to fire as soon as she was close enough. Hackles rise when she hears the call out over the com. There's no response from her verbally, but she zeroes in on a target and lets loose the kew...
Calliope doesn't buck the Raptor much as they descend into atmo. One of the perks of the big ships is that they take such things easier than the Vipers. She goes straight into an evasive pattern. Because she's still got a bullseye on her Raptor's backside, whatever they're calling her now. "Uh, Pi, hang on. I'm going to try and not get us shot while on approach." She takes one hand off the controls to hold up a pair of crossed gloved fingers to Isolde. To the group, "Flight, Soundbite." Pause to grimace. "I'm going to get to dodging. We'll cover you. Trying to fix a lock on these things."
The Colonial Forces certainly have surprise on their side as Kell sees no hostile Raiders in the air guarding the first AA Site as they descend through the atmosphere, on target. Listenign to the chatter on the comms, he can hear that some of the others are being painted by the Anti-Air Batteries, luckily he is still in the clear for now. Taking that advantage, Razor angles his Viper steeper at the fourth emplacement, target reticule hovering over the site as it grows larger and larger when the distance descreases with each passing second. Once in range, Kell presses down on the trigger stub and the Viper's autocannons roar to life, spitting out round after round onto the emplacement.
"Yeah," says Coach, not seeing some of the humor others seem to place in setting in for this run. More deadpan, "For Queenstown." He is ready to start this and get the toasters out there, do some real damage. He leads for Battery 2, with Pixie on his wing.
Gwyndolen's Viper swoops after they break atmo, skimming along the landscape. Gwyndolen takes a breath to consider their situation and picks a target, zeroing in on Battery 3.
"That would be good, Bite!" Isolde grins toward Calliope, already tapping out full commands on her keyboard as she draws up her counter-measures. She glances across her DRADIS out of pure instinct.
Salvae's viper twists and rolls in an evasive pattern, forming up with Razor as he tries to get a good angle while leading the emplacement's fire away from the air wing.
"Hammerhead, Babyface. I read. Forming on you." Cap's Viper follows course, taking up position off her wing and behind, and tightening that formation a little more once they've come down through the atmospheric turbulence and are in clear, empty sky. Her favorite kind. In the midst of their dive, all the glory of the land below is visible, yet sadly, she has only a few moments to admire the scenery before they're on their target (it's not very surprising if you stroll up via the scenic route, after all), coming nearly right down on the first set of batteries in their little dive assault. And while several targets scramble under missile lock, she and her wingleader seem clear: "I'll follow you in." Hand tight on the stick, she holds the dive as long as is safe (and a little more), then pulls to scoop up and strafe toward the target, finger on the trigger.
Webb does his best to heed his own advice, angling for one of the batteries as his Viper levels off above the treeline.
"This one's for Twinkle Toes," Roara says coldly, switching her weapons free before slicing forward after her target. "Bullseye --erm, Soundbite! Hammerhead. We've got you."
Somebody needs to get the AA Batteries a new pair of sensors. Either that or the CF troops are just that good because all of the missiles are evaded. Two of the batteries go down in the first round of strafing passes. The other two scan the skies, trying to lock on again.
"Cm'on, cm'on, cm'on," Isolde is muttering under her breath as she rapidly continues to work her way through her measures, but she's only able to disrupt two of the ones she's focusing on. "Shit... Bite, Bite... incoming!" She feels her body begin to tighten as if preparing for impact.
Eva is really just that good. She hasn't made it this long without being blown out of the sky by not knowing how to fly. She even manages to get a hit in, and they take out two of the batteries. She moves in to get the next closest to her position.
"Nice shooting, Razor!" Salvae says as Kell's KEWs stitch across the AA gun, causing it to miss him. His viper flips around and gives him a rudimentary angle for a quick straffing attack, his cannons zipping across launcher.
A little nudge of the control stick shifts Webb's Raptor out of the way of the missile that zips up at him. He does some damage to the third battery, combining with the others to destroy it in a shower of sparks. Glancing over his shoulder, he sees the status. "Not bad - two left. Finish them off, flight."
Calliope does not get missile with the face of her Raptor. It doesn't dodge gracefully. It's a big, lumbering ox of a thing next to the Viper's nimble gazelles of death. But she hustles it out of the way of enemy fire. "Pi! We are totally alive!" She doesn't sound totally surprised anymore when her non-death happens, though she's still grateful. Onto the comms, "Hammerhead, Soundbite." She tries to own it. "Thanks for the cover. I've got a lock and we're still sitting pretty up here. We'll keep the jammers on for you."
Gwyndolen strafes the battery with a hail of Kewfire. Softening it up for others to take down, of course. She turns her Viper in a quick neat turn, coming around for a second pass, fixed on a new target.
Tucker's missile slams home right in the head of the missile platform, setting off a massive chain reaction. "Frak that missile launcher in particular." he quips as he climbs the Raptor to turn it to start on a second attack run to finish the cleanup of the AA batteries.
Razor's stream of projectiles that are spat out of his autocannons hit the AA emplacement center mass, some of the rounds punching right through the armor plating and into the innards, sending off some sparks. The battery is not out of commission yet though but the turret can be seen traverse a touch slower. Hearing Salvae over the comms, the Ensign answers back, "Thanks Socks, you doing okay? Saw one of the missiles heading in our vacinity, wasn't coming at me though." Aftering pulling up and then banking back, Kell sets up for a second pass on the Anti-Air Battery and once again when in range, he lets loose.
"Nice shooting Pixie, and whoever that was," says Griffin, not even getting a shot in, his jaw tightening just a little. "Save some metal for me." Something to hit at least. He banks around for a second run as batteries still remain.
"Quit playing with your food, Babyface!" Roara hoots. She's probably kidding? ...since that was a really good shot on Cap's part. She leads them back around to take another pass at the enemy vessel.
"Thanks, Coach." Pixie really hadn't done so much though, but she continues to fire, but at a new target, keeping clear of the fire from the batts while trying to strike true to her target.
In atmo, the ballistics are somewhat limited in range, so short passes are a necessity. Cap breaks off hard at the end of her first pass, which seemed to have put a good number of rounds into one of the launcher... struts? Pylons? Something like that. A thingy on top of the battery connected to one set of missile tubes. Again, it's all pretty much by the books, settling in behind Roara's viper as they come back the other direction. "Hammerhead, Babyface, sorry. I'll try a little more center. Watch your nine for friendlies coming across."
"Woo, we're alive," Isolde says with a laugh. "Let's see how long we can keep that going." Then she is turning her focus back to her elusive battery friend and its companion. When the third battery is down, she flicks her focus over to KEWs. Her gaze ticks back up to DRADIS again, as if waiting for something.
Salvae banks and rolls as another missile zipps past him, the clouds of smoke tracing a line across the sky, "That one was close!" he says, watching it streak off into the distance before pulling back to reaquire a target, blasting his cannons at the cylon installation with the rest of the Timber Wolves.
With the third and fourth batter emplacements down, Eva spins her viper around, looking for the next target, waiting for Spider's orders.
On his second pass, Razor's shots are even more lethal as this time the rounds from his autocannons, in conjunction with Gwyndolen's, tear into the casing that stores the battery's missiles. Whenever ammo is hit, it causes a very explosive chain reaction and this is no different as the explosion tears the turret apart. There is no mistake that the fourth anti-aircraft battery is now completely out of commission. The thick, black smoke billowing up into the air hides the true scope of the damage done but there is no need for a closer look. "Sock, Razor, AckAck is down, should be no more missiles coming at you."
Gwyndolen is swooping in on her second pass when one of batteries targets her; she dodges it almost lazily, the missle and the Viper dekeing each other in a deadly dance. She flies not recklessly, but pushing just a little, utter faith in her own precision to come as close as possible and pull back again. Her shots ring out a split second after her dodge, tearing into the battery in conjunction with Razor's.
Calliope grins as her missile connects to the ground. Joining with the Vipers strafing to end one of those missile batteries. "Those things could not hit shit," she says, shooting a quick grin back to Isolde. Good job. Over the comms, "Flight, Soundbite. Looks like we've got some breathing room. Still on course with your lead, Spider." She says her callsign with a little more oomph now. Trying to own it. Ish.
Webb's strafing run peppers the launching tube of the first battery, then he's pulling up away from the treeline so he can survey the damage.
"Hey, your voice didn't even squeak that time," Isolde teases Calliope gently off the comms. She flashes a grin her pilot's way.
"Could be worse," says Coach, whatever that means. "All you again Pixie," he says. Her and a dozen others, but it takes a village to make a team or somesuch. "Lets keep our heads, remember formations." He scans for their Lead, Webb. And will bank to start getting back to following, ignoring the damage done, others can survey or look at what they did.
Once the missiles are away, Tucker frowns a little. "Anyone else find this too easy?" he asks, mainly to himself because if he said it on the comms, he knows he'll summon a basestar or five /right/ here.
"Damn, Razor, that toaster kick your dog or something?" Salvae wonders as he watches his and Gwyndolen's vipers tear the thing to pieces, sheets of scrap and slag spinning off into the distance. His viper banks and slows, rejoining the rest of the wing in formation, "Spider, forming up on your four.."
"Copy Coach." Pixie says over the coms, adding her own callsign in there before ending the transmission. For the moment she falls back in at the wing of the Coach, a glance around to check the status of the others. There's nothing she's heard over the coms declaring an immediate emergency so she relaxes enough to take a few breaths before the next round that would surely come.
"It was a very bad toaster," remarks Gwyndolen over the comms, speaking for the first time in dry, posh tones. "It kicked dogs, never paid its taxes, and always took the very last slice of cake." She straightens up her Viper, rejoining formation as they move on.
"Roger that, Babyface," Roara calls out before completing her final sweep. Forming back up to survey the area, she slows her bird. "Keep your guard up-- And was that cake Cherry or Chocolate? Oh, sorry. I'm thinking of Pi." Anybody? Nobody? At least Roara amuses herself.
Cap doesn't actually put her next volley into the center mass as promised, but this time hits the tubes themselves, rather than the thingy holding them up. Well, just as good. It's hard to shoot missiles at Vipers when your missiles are all blown up, so take that! "Er, what? Anyway, looks like we're clear, Hammerhead."
"Nice shooting everyone," Webb calls over the radio when he sees the wreckage left of the first defensive position. "Let's see if we can hit the second site before they can scramble Raiders up to tangle with us." He angles his bird towards their second objective.
Eva waits for SPider's command, and then hits the throttle, moving in to intercept the CAG and fly his wing, her own wingman, the one she usually picks, no where to be seen. '
Webb was listening to Roara at least, "We starting a trend here, guys? Cakes and pies? Maybe I should've named Soundbite 'Cakehole' instead." He snickers at himself, then gets serious, "Second target coming up here." When they reach it, it's the same routine. Webb himself dips down to take out one of the batteries.
"Pi is delicious." Isolde only catches the turn of phrase after the last syllable is off her tongue. "I mean... pie... you know... the opposite of cake." She then just shakes her head as she realizes she's probably not talking herself out of this. But there's Webb to help keep it all rolling along.
Eva, for her part, picks up a partner, in Soundbite and between that pairing, and the other team members that pile in, she manages to help take out another of the batteries, spinning back around to lift up for overwatch.
"Second site in .... sight.." Salvae grimaces at his poor sentence construction and watches as Spider blasts one to smithereens. "Target acquired," he narrates, as his viper strafes over the target, little plumes of dirt and debris leading a trail to the AA installation before he manages to ding a few bullets off of it and has to pull up.
Seems like the Cylons are still slow to react, that or the Colonial Forces took out the first battery site with such quickness and efficiency that they are upon the second site with plenty of time to spare. Flying with the rest of the group that have been tasked with the initial assault, Razor commits to his strafing run which once again is on target. In combination with another Viper's attack, they rake apart one of the AA batteries, the autocannon rounds punching into the housing and destroying whatever Centurions or system that was controlling it. There is no spectacular explosion this time but the battery stops moving and just sits there sits there in silence.
Calliope conserves her missiles and flies support for the Vipers as they speed their way toward the second line of targets. And she keeps off mic, so she can snort at Webb in a way the CAG would probably not appreciate. "He so did not name me," she informs Isolde firmly. "I think it was Jigger, when he was taking a piss in the Head. At least, that's how I heard the story. I feel like I'm a real fighter pilot now, such respect." She kind of says it fondly, though. The razzing means she is a real pilot, maybe.
All the joking on the line, Griffin is gnashing his teeth a little. He continues to fly, as they go for the next set of targets. As they go in, Pixie seems to take out the one they were CF'ing, such that he rolls starboad and helps with one of the others before turning and then, returning, towards formation. "I guess you were born for it Pixie." This life that is, being a pilot.
"I double dare you to correct him over comms," Isolde says, maintaining the level of maturity expected in the Air Wing. She looks back toward Calliope, her smile lopsided. When she looks back to her consoles as they near the second bank of batteries.
Going in on the attack, Tucker brings up his missiles, apparently content to leave them all on the planet as he fires upon another Cylon battery and blows it apart with a direct strike as he pulls up and away, a crescendo in the music as he manuveurs the Raptor into position to continue the attack if neccessary.
Gwyndolen's Viper dips a little to strafe one of the batteries, but only just rakes the side, leaving the serious destruction to the others. Because she's generous like that. Sharing the glory and so on.
There's a grin in her voice, course Pixie is proud when she returns to Coach. "Career Military. This is my life, Coach. Occasionally I get lucky." She attempts to settle herself down as she falls back into formation, taking Coach's six again. A slight bob of her wing towards the CAG who had also taken one out. She's not sure of anyone else, but she's listening on the coms.
Tilting out of the firing solution of the friendlies, Roara is all too happy to contribute to the accumulative strike. She weaves in, contributing to the assault but not necessarily showboating.
With the second AA site destroyed, Salvae once again forms up with the rest of the wing, Viper speeding along just above treetop level to evade the cylon dradis. "No contacts on dradis," he calls out. "Flats, Soundbite, you see anything?"
The second objective goes as well as the first, and in short order the Colonials are vectoring off towards their third and final target of the evening. This time they're not as lucky - there are air targets on the DRADIS. Seeing that, Webb calls out, "Cherry, Hammerhead, Flats, Soundbite - focus on those batteries. Rest of us will cover you from the planes."
Calliope's blue eyes widen. "Umm, no," is her reply to Isolde on that. Is she a little afraid of Webb? Maybe. She doesn't not talk anymore smack about him even within the safety of her Raptor cabin, at least.
"Copy that, Spider. You heard the man, team, let's go eliminate a few more targets." Eva dives back down, coming in from the high angle and focusing her attention on the batteries.
Cap continues on Roara's wing, following along dutifully and without complaint over the lack of resistance as they move to the second site. Some people might be itching for some excitement, but uh, this is plenty for her, thanks! The attack goes mostly as the first, albeit without her shooting any bits off the tops of the platforms this time, as without air cover and in superior numbers, the Vipers really do just fly circles around the SAM sites, at least with the Raptors backing them up against the enemy targetting. But it can't last forever, and as they skim over the trees toward site #3, well - look at all of those ships. "Hammerhead, Babyface. I'll watch your six for your run."
"Contact. Multiple batteries and targets.." Tucker draws in a breath. "...this is where we're going to enter the chorus." He mutters as he starts to bring up the targetting computer. "Got a tone." he manages as he starts to target and finds a solid lock. "Here goes. Fox 2!"
"Copy that, Spider, moving to engage!" Salvae answers the orders and pulls up, his viper twisting and engines roaring as he steers into the incoming enemy craft. "Frakkers knifed our rides! Can't lettem strut around in our vipers like that!" he targets Cyper2 and punches it, angling for a good shot.
DRADIS in Kell's Viper suddenly lights up with multiple contacts and hearing the others on the comm chatter can only confirm that they are indeed real. The milkrun is over as it appears their last objective for this first strike will be well defended. As the two forces get closer, Razor is able to get a picture of where the engagement is going as some of the hostiles are going after the group that their CAG has ordered to make attack runs. "Cherry, Razor, you've got two bandits on your tail. Trying to clear one off of you!" With that, Kell angles his Viper towards one of the Raiders and goes full throttle. Much harder to hit a fast moving target than an AA Emplacement as both he and the Raider are juking and jostling in the atmosphere. Finally, Razor gets a bead on his target and he lets a burst rip, the tracers shooting out as some of this rounds punches into the armor of one of the Cylon's weapon. Not a kill but its hurt.
Eva and her small band, her happy band, make short work out of the batteries, it seems, but that doesn't mean they, or more precisely, she is out of the woods, as she has two ships on her, and takes a heavy hit from one, the control panel showering her with sparks. "I'm fine, get those ships out of the air. Spider, battery emplacements are down."
Salvae grimaces as his shots merely cause cosmetic damage to the enemy fighter. His shots always a split second behind, hitting more woodland creatures than evil cylons as he struggles in a high Gee turn. Sweat stinging his eyes, as he watches the enemy viper light up a friendly. "Cherry, Cherry, go evasive!" Continuing his pursuit, he does his best to get another quick shot on target before Eva's shot down.
"Alright, switching to KEW. Time to do some damage." Isolde flicks a switch and immediately draws up her aiming console. She focuses on the batteries as they come into view, and then opens fires once she has one in her sights. She is just one of a few who target the battery, and once it pops, she is already scanning her DRADIS for the targets that start to swarm. "We're clear, Bite... find yourself the one that annoys you most."
A few chased after Gwyndolen, a fellow Captain, Coach gave chase. Though the raider evades, he is giving chase. "The Frak?" He calls out, maybe not agreeing with some of the joking comments but no telling which. Then he shuts his can, rmembers his own discipline and focuses on shooting, especially at that slippery raider.
Gwyndolen dodges a shot as she swoops in on the attack. That dodge looks easy, but she has a target painted on her backside this time around, apparently. The next shot just skims over her side, and as she rolls to avoid that one, the battery below takes her plane in the side, the craft shuddering with the impact. Gwyndolen says something very unlady-like under her breath, her hands quick on the controls as she maneuvers the Viper quicker, ready to dodge again. She's still in the air. It's all good.
"Cherry!?" Calliope's sound-off to Eva is a touch high-pitch. The pilot's answer over the comms prompts a sigh of relief she doesn't bother to mute. She brings her Raptor down lower. Fudging with the lock she has, but allowing Isolde better position to employ their rear guns. She eases her Raptor up, to join the fray. "I'm fixed for ground targets on this go-round, Pi, and they're dealt with. I'll try and keep a clear line of fire for you. Give Cherry some over."
Delilah takes a moment to get her bearings, aiming before taking a pot shot, intending it to be on target instead of something lucky, for her own peace of mind. Following the lead of Coach, she targets the Raider that is heavily attacking one of their own.
"Coming in to try to clean your backside, Knick-Knack." Tucker offers as he is switching from attacking batteries to going to streak in on the heavy, looking to give it a taste of its own medicine as the missile is armed and starts looking for tone lock on the ship.
Webb's paint is a little chipped by the Raider he's tangling with, but he sticks with the target and damages it a little in turn. Hearing calls about Cherry causes him to seek her out in the fray. He breaks off to assist.
"Heavy coming in on you, but it's slow," Cap calls in warning as they engage, and she immediately rolls off and jets ahead toward the large ship as it fires on her wingleader. It's not hard to get a bead on the larger target, the sort even SHE can hit with some reliability, though piercing the armor proves to be another mater as she unloads a stream of KEW to light pings against the thing's tough hull at best. Maybe she does dissuade it from Roara, though, as it peels off and she sticks with it. No reason to give up her solution. "You're clear, go wild, Hammerhead."
"On it. Pi on assist." Isolde is already tracking Eva's DRADIS ping, and she narrows her eyes slightly. She growls under her breath as the Cylon-controlled Viper swings out of her shot. She shakes her head before she glances to see how Calliope is doing at the head of the Raptor.
With the batteries taken out, Roara swoops in to join the rest of the cluster-frak up in the air. "Motha Frakin'-" She spouts off, evidently continuing the rant off-com in the privacy of her cockpit as her shot glints right off of the enemy bird.
Eva is still going, her voice coming harsh on the comms, "I can handle it," which she does quite well, avoiding both of the raiders on her, "Just get these ships down. Focus on the ones you can pile damage on." She keeps at it, focusing in on the closest raider and getting no joy, so she goes again.
Kell stays on the tail of the Raider that is still hounding Eva, making the best effort he can to either disuade the Cylon to peel off from its intended target or punish it for not veering away. It appears the latter is the case and it comes with a heavy dosage for help from the CAG. Razor's shots tear apart the Raider's wing, shearing it right off just as Webb's salvo decapitates the thing. "Spider, Razor, thanks for helping out, not sure if I could've cleared Cherry's tail by myself there!" There is a bit of relief in the young Ensign's voice, as if he is trying to keep it together in his first major furball. This isn't anywhere like the turkey shoot they had on the Centurions on the ground, not even close.
"Frakker's slippy as frak!" Socks complains as the ace in the Cyper continues dodging his fire. "Gonna need backup on this one, Razor, help me out, he'll be on your two in three seconds...." Salvae calls out over the wireless as he's thrown from one side of his cockpit to the next. "Keep on it, Pie! Bracket that frakkin frakface" he encourages as he sees one of the raptor's rear guns stream across the sky.
Webb spins his Viper around and takes out one of the Raiders on Eva. "Got one of them, Cherry. No worries, Razor." He then goes after one of the heavies, since they seem to be doing the most damage.
No matter how much preparation goes into a strike, something is always bound to happen. With the hit to the Viper pilot, Pixie veers a little too far and only manages a graze to the Raider. Grinding her teeth together she gives lets off the thrusters and gets in behind the Raider to try and get a bigger piece of it.
As a group descends on one of those chasing Gwyn, Coach sticks to firing the same at that Raider. Lots of fire, lots of misses and near misses. "Frak," he moans into the coms, "This is what the joking got us. We need more drills." Hey, he's a captain, there are some Lieuys that will probably have to listen in the end.
When Webb banks towards the Heavy Raiders, Kell almost follows but he catches a metallic glint coming at them and sees that it is one of the stolen Vipers. "Spider, Razor, we have one inbound." So instead of forming up with the CAG, the young Ensign pulls back on his stick and begins to climb steeply, then when he sees that the Cyper is not coming after him but is continuing on, he inverts his Viper and dives back down. Now he is latched onto the Cylon's tail, "Watch yourself, Spider, he's going after you. Will try to shake him off of your six."
Gwyndolen's Viper takes another hit, shuddering in the air. The controls spark at Gwyndolen, her face lit by the sudden surge of light. The pilot grits her teeth, working frantically over the controls. "Stay with me," she murmurs urgently to the plane, as if she can talk it into staying intact.
Calliope is flying loose and easy, now that she's got some breathing room. She's most comfortable still when she's just a pilot. Her hands are firm on the controls as she steers her ship through the sky, keeping a little wide of the Vipers so they can provide ECM cover in a pinch. While also working on maintaining a firing line for that KEW gun.
After disuasing the Heavy from Gwyndolen, Tucker continues to chase after it, even as it goes after Eva next. "..no you don't, you cowardly yellow bastich, picking on the ones already nailed. Come play with my song, mother frakker."
Cap stays on her target! It's not on Roara now, but she has a good, solid 'slot', right on its tail and not easily shaken, as her Viper far outclasses it on maneuverability if not firepower and armor. And now it pays off. While the last salvo glanced over the target at an angle and merely dented the armor, the next volley is 100% on target, blowing away some of the plating and then getting into the innards, causing something to smoke. It isn't down, but she smells blood - or oil - and sticks with it.
Webb glances back over his shoulder when Kell calls his attention to the Cyper on his tail. "Got 'em Razor. We'll take him down." Except they don't, as it happens, though they do ding him and Webb manages to avoid the return fire.
"Socks, Razor, sorry can't come assist yet!" Kell says as he continues to stick to the Cylon's tail, trying to find a bead on the stolen Colonial fighter. He knows he can't aim on the damn thing and has to guess where to lead the target. Not an easy task with how maneuverable the fighters are. He doesn't wait too long though and soon enough, smoothly presses down on the trigger stub, sending a burst of KEW at the hostile target. The salvo of projectile cuts across the Cyper's path but only a couple of rounds hit, chewing up some armor. Gritting his teeth, Kell tries to stay on its tail for another volley.
Eva still manages to drag her controls around, and keep her bird flying, despite the two ships still attacking her. A solid hit on one of the heavies, but it doesn't go back around, and she pulls a hard right, coming back around for another shot.
"We're out of missiles, noone on us, Grasshopper, get us some ECM on those frakkers!" Tucker calls back to his ECO as her fires into the body of the heavy with little affect as he maneuvers into position to keep them down so the others can nail them.
Salvae breathes a sigh of relief as he chews through the cyper's wing, slowing it enough for Pi to get the kill. "Nice shot, Pi!" he hails as he banks away from the wreck even before it spins out of control into the ground. "No worries, Razor, it's down, I see yours, moving to assist," he says, going wide before angling in on the other cyper, doing his best not to hit a friendly--all these fighters are starting to look the same to him!
It was another near miss, the kew hits the Raider but doesn't manage to do more than jank up the armor some. A few selective and creative curse words color her cockpit and she's lining up for a second go at it. Or a third. Is anyone counting? Likely Pixie is.. She continues to pepper the Raider with kew. Maybe she'll distract it so Coach or another of the pilots can get a good shot in!
Cap kills something! It's a miracle, to be sure. Or just good, by the books flying. She has her targetting solution, she sticks with it, and she keeps putting rounds into the target until it dies. That's basically Fighter Piloting 101. So, while it's nothing to write home about, she does give a little woop on the comm as it goes down into the trees. "Splash the heavy, FRAK. Got one on me." Yeah, maybe she's a little too dialed in. Even as she's hunting down the larger ship, a Raider comes in behind her, and while she has enough time to roll to one side out of the full stream of fire, some of it tags her. Tags her and puts a frakking crack in the canopy. That's kind of scary. Still, she immediately goes into crazy flyer mode, pulling back, rising, and trying to circle behind the bastard.
Gwyndolen dodges the missile this time, her Viper zigs while the missile zags. The Viper is in sorry shape, trailing dark smoke, but she's still aloft. For now.
Calliope tries to keep track of her fellows, and the quickly shrinking number of Cylons, in the fury in the sky. It's all happening fast and furious, though. So, mostly, she just keeps flying. She occasionally flicks a look back at Isolde to see how the ECO is hanging in, enjoying not having a Cylon her tail. Maybe Soundbite has its advantages over Bullseye.
"Babyface, Hammerhead. This slippery frakker on your tail is really startin' to piss me off," Roara punches a switch for emphasis, pulling back to briefly observe the raider's route before zipping forward.
"DRADIS contact D-twelve is no longer valid," Isolde's voice comes across the comms. "Go get them, Cherry!" Then she scans the DRADIS console before she narrows her eyes. "Flight, resuming counter-measures on contact D-eleven, D-fourteen, and D-zero-nine."
More misses, less jokes at least. Those drills, flight patterns, fun things. Coach was serious, but no more comments, the toasters are falling but a few remains. Finish the mission. One might be on him, but he doesn't notice for now. That one Raider seems an ace pilot, the way it evades their shots, or manages to only take scuffs when its hit. It must go down.
Webb continues to evade the Cyper on his tail, each pass plinking away a bit more armor without actually managing to bring it down. But finally it falls, with the assistance of the rest of the squad. "Right, that's the last of them," he calls. "Everyone still with us?" He does a headcount of planes just to see.
With the enemy winnowed down, and her ship mostly cooperating, Eva continues flying, working with the other pilots to help get the final two of the enemy party. She's still with them, mostly, as Webb takes his count, "I'm here."
Tucker breaks contact, returning to the fold. "Flats reporting, we're cozy, Spider." he reports as he joins in with the rest of the ack.
Gwyndolen swoops and smokes, the plume of dark smoke lingering after the place as she helps to take down the last two. "Still flying, sir," she reports. Just barely.
That one raider out, Coach reorganizes with the rest to mop up, and then looks for Webb, returns to formation. "Coach is with you," returns Griffin, listening for the call of his wingman for the moment just the same.
Salvae watches the last cylon piloted viper go crashing down into the side of the mountain and breathes a sigh of relief. He's soaked with sweat, wearing a rubber suit and pulling 4 Gs is tiring, it turns out, but at least his ears have stopped ringing. "Socks standing by," he answers back to Spider.
With the last bandits cleared from the skies, Kell is finally able to release a long sigh, adrenaline one of the main reasons why he was able to main focus through his first major engagement. When that elusive Cyper is finally brought down, he checks his DRADIS and the multitude of red pings are now gone. Hearing the CAG's call, he waits his turn before sounding off, "Razor, all systems still green."
Cap manages to loop-de-loop out of the line of fire of the tricksy raider on her tail - she does a bit better when she actually knows it's there, it seems! Along with the entire squadron that seems to already be chasing it, she gets a bit of revenge by putting a few of her own rounds in it's cockpit, though it may be hard to tell as it comes apart from a hail of fire. The rest go similarly. "Babyface," she checks in as Webb takes his headcount, "I have cockpit damage and may depressurize out of atmo, but my suit is good and I'm uninjured."
"Pixie checking in, still alive and well." Untouched for all intents and purposes. She falls back into formation a little more subdued than before, but she's watching the DRADIS for more even as she listens to everyone checking in.
"Hammerhead. Still flying. Still angry," Roara roll-calls, forming back up with the flight.
"Righto," Webb says when everyone reports in more or less okay. "Targets clear, let's head for home before more Toasters show up. Job well done."
Calliope sounds off, "Soundbite. We're good here. Taking her home, Flight. Can redirect to pick-up on the ground as needed." She'll follow instructions, until she can fly home to the barn.