A //Vanguard// CAP comes to rescue of a Canceron Air Patrol, only to find that they were the ones targeted all along.
Location: Airspace above Kunnar Provence
Related Scenes: None
Scene Number: 767
Flats is following after the flight of Vipers, his playlist starting on the second loop through as Grasshopper is sitting in the backseat. "I don't know, Cherry." he comments casually into the comms, "Maybe they know you're up here and they got scared."
"They should be scared. Someone stole my emergency rations out of my ship!" Of course, since they don't stick with a single viper, it's really just that a deckie probably forgot to move her stuff over. But that doesn't matter! "I could really use a fruity oaty bar. But I wouldn't complain. Give you time to work on that playlist." She pauses, then keys up the mike again, "How you holding up, Razor, Banshee? Still awake out there?"
It is Aubrey Naxos' first patrol as a member of the Timber Wolves. The Lieutenant JG is now fully settled into the Viper she's currently piloting, what with nothing to do for 4 hours but stare at DRADIS with a bored eye. She's itching to test the machine out for real, but the quiet is something she can appreciate, considering the alternative.
"Um," Aubrey's voice comes over the comm. "This is Banshee, I think I have your fruity oaty bar in here. Or I did. It's gone now, Cherry. Sorry, I owe you one."
Razor has been more willing to take on Combat Air Patrols as of late, perhaps with the recent engagements with the Cylons, he knows he is a bit behind in actual combat experience compared to many of the other pilots that have been assigned to the Vanguard. As usual, the young Ensign is more focused on what is outside, nor not in the case of this current patrol, than the casual banter that plays over the comm between his flight mates. When a question is directed at him though, he responds while still giving his DRADIS a glance, "Cherry, Razor, I'm good." Bored, but good. Most of the time he would leave the verbal acknowledgement at that but the talk of food and his growing hunger is poking at him, "I didn't know they had fruity oaty bars as part the emergency rations? Thought it was usually a protein stick or something."
One can almost hear the disappointment in Cherry's voice, "Was it the strawberry one? I love that one." She's not mad. Hell, she seems, most of the time, determined to ruin every other pilot's diet, "They don't. I packed out my own kit. Put in all the things I like to eat. If you leave it to the deck, it's stale peanuts and grisly beef jerky. And nobody wants that."
"Blueberry I think. In as much as the fruit in oaty bars tastes anything fruit-like," Aubrey responds. "It was stale. I think I may have saved your digestive system. It's currently lurking around like a brick in my belly."
"By emergency, she just means that she needs something to chew on to pass the time. That and Virgons get upset if they don't have their tea and scones at the proper time." Yes, Tucker knows that Eva is Hibernian, but if she's going to pick on him about the music, he's going to fire back at her.
There was about to be more when Grasshopper calls out. "I have a furball on DRADIS. Two Vipers, Four Raiders, mixing it up at our 10 o'clock, 20 miles out." Indeed, there's a swarm of Vipers and Raiders that seem to be in a swirling furball. The two Vipers are in molted green and brown, firing their KEWs against the Raiders.
"Flats, tell me you did not just call me a Virgon. Trust me when I tell you, you do not want a friendly fire incident up in here." She still sound cheerful enough though, even when delivering that threat. But that good cheer fades, as the ECO calls out his contacts, and Eva throttles forward, Banshee, you're on me, Razor, youre with Jigger." Because of course Jigger! Jigger is the best. "Weapons free. let's see if we can clear the skies for our Canceron friends. The camo gives them away.
As the patrol gets closer and closer, Kell is still on Jigger's wing but something catches the young Ensign's eyes as his Viper begins to join the frey. His attention isn't on the Raiders but instead the friendly camo birds. Razor's eyes widen immediately and he calls, rather loudly in the comm, perhaps over-excited or slightly panicked, "Flight, Razor! Those are /not/ friendles! I repeat, /not/ friendlies!" It seems like while he was calling out the alert to the others, Kell rolled his fighter towards one of the Cypers and the undercover toasters picked that up as one immediately begins to engage him, "Flats, Razor. You have one on you!"
Eva wastes no time, once the wing assignments have been handed out, and all of the CAP seems ready to engage, "Vanguard actual, this is Cherry. Launch the alert vipers. CAP is engaging cylon targets engaged with canceron air forces." As Kell gives the report, her voice is dead pan, "Frak me."
"Cherry, two on you, I've got your six!" Banshee calls over the com. She brakes and drops back behind one of the Raiders attacking Eva and flips the control cap on her joystick for the KEW. "Let's see how this baby fires," she murmurs to herself, as her thumb caresses the button and sends out a spray of bullets at the Cylon ship. The news that the vipers aren't friendlies has her hissing under her breath.
As one of the Vipers forms up on Tucker, the Raptor was preparing to provide support when Kell calls out his report. "What?" There's a stare atthe canopy across from him, and he finds himself staring at a flashing red eye just as the Viper drops back to open fire into the exposed rear of the Raptor, having caught Tucker off-guard as the others break on their attacks.
Unfortunately for Eva, Kell's pronouncement comes too late and she has raiders to worry about besides. She does not change targets.
Eva manages to get a good hit on that raider, but it isn't enough by half to blow it up. Never let it be said she doesn't believe in second chance, as she spins around and tries again.
"Suck on that, Toaster! WOOHOO!" Banshee howls over the comm. That is, undoubtedly, how she got her callsign. Aubrey jolts against the side of the cockpit as another Raider lands a spattering of shots along her hull. "Frak! One on me, Cherry. Breaking off to engage!" She hauls on the stick to bank right and come at the enemy.
Tucker gets the warning too late, as the KEW rounds chew into the Raptor. "Get our ECM going, Grasshopper, I'll keep trying to shake 'em!" Tucker calls out as he hears the chirp of a tone in his helmet of a missile lock. "Frak. Chaff! Flares!" he calls out, trying to disorient the missile as he goes into a defensive pattern.
Jigger in the meantime hangs on Razor's wing, mixing it up in the midsts of the battle.
Since he was able to notice the Viper turned Cyper being a hostile, Razor juked his bird in time for the stream of tracer fire to miss, punching through thin air where he would have been without going evasive. His own salvo does scratch up the Cyper that is going after the Raptor and for now is trying to knock that stolen ride out of the sky before it could light up their Raptor. Hovering his targeting reticule over the Cyper, Kell unleashes another burst of autocannon fire.
"This one is smarter than his buddy," Banshee growls into the comm. Aubrey shoves the joystick forward to nose down under a barrage of fire from the Raider, her own shots going wide. She banks hard and comes about for another pass, spraying a stream of bullets at the Cylon ship. The armor on the wing sparks with impacts, but none penetrate. Her own Viper's tail sparks similarly, without real damage. "He's on my six!" she chuffs out, before pulling back hard on the stick and sharply turns to come at the Raider's port side. Once more, the armor absorbs the shots, and the Raider's in turn get absorbed by her tail armor. She is getting pissed off, and loops to come in at the raider again, juking shots left and right as she scores a solid series of hits along its starboard side.
As the Raptor jukes and jerks through the fire, Tucker is letting out a steady stream of curses in Celtan and Sagittaran as he hears the constant patter of ammo slamming into the side of the ride. "Just hang on, Grasshopper!" he calls out as he continues to try to engage with the smaller missiles. "Frak these tiny things!" he garbles as he tries to keep the Raider and Cyper off of him.
"Frak me. Hold on Flats, I'm coming, just need to clear this damned raider. He's on Jigger now." Damnit, but these cylons are really shaking things up, "Flight, I've never seen the likes of these. What the hall is in their wheaties?" It's both terrifying and exhilarating, but mostly terrifying, to see raiders actually evolving, practically before your very eyes. Jigger, thank the gods, as ever, seems to evade most of the damage coming his way, and it mostly comes down to Eva playing a very long and extended game of cat and mouse with one of the raiders, made more difficult by the thing seeming to want to try to be everywhere but where she is. Finally, she manages to take it down, her voice crisp, angry on the comms, "Splash one. I'm coming, Flats."
With the hectic furball is indeed one, especially with the Colonial Forces being outnumbered from the start, Razor is amongst those that are trying to do their best to not get shot down. The young rookie was pretty successful for the most part, any rounds that land on his Viper just chipping away paint or the armor soaking most of the impact before it can go through into critical systems. His own shots though are finding their mark but not doing enough to down the Cyper. Razor can tell that he isn't just doing superficial damage either as the stolen bird that was going after their Raptor is now smoking out of one of its engines but still spaceworthy. Suddenly, though, the Cylon Raider that was after him finds a great angle on the poor Ensign and he finds the cockpit suddenly shattering all around him. "Frak!" He calls out, his Viper going down in a tight spiral as he loses control. It takes a moment for Kell to fight the inertia and spin, eventually regaining control after recovering from the shock. Climbing his damaged Viper back up towards the engagement, he tries to return to the fight. "Flight, Razor. Lost my canopy, no wounds. Trying to re-engage." Luckily, no wounds at all to the pilot himself.
"Good shooting, Banshee! Next time anyone calls you a rook, send them my way! Kick the shit out of them." Ah Eva...Mama Bear, Hibernia style. She dives back in, her shot barely enough to push the raider off course/ But if it saved the raptor, that's all to the good, "Damn, Razor, pull back, head back to the ship, the alert will bring you in!"
"Flats, Grasshopper!" the ECO calls out to Tucker, getting the pilot's attention. "Yeah?" he calls back out.
"Razor's getting chewed up, he's going to need an assist."
"Who do we have in good shape?"
"Banshee just freed up."
"Banshee, Flats! Break attack and get that damned Cyper off of Razor's tail!" Tucker calls out to the other LTJG as he concentrates his fire upon the other Cyper.
Well, clearly Banshee was picked up by the Wolves for a reason. The fresh recruit pulls up hard to avoid the Raider's fire, then loops to come down above the raider and fire into its cockpit. BOOM! "YAHOO! Bandit four down for the count, Captain!" she celebrates, before looking for her next target. "Hang tight, Razor, coming to assist!" She veers towards the camo-viper attacking Kell.
Perhaps re-engaging was not the best of ideas with the condition that his Viper is in but the young Rookie is certainly earnest and perhaps a bit overconfident in himself, especially with how the last three missions went. He was pretty much untouched while being able to unleash a good amount of damage. Lady Luck is putting Razor back in his place it seems as when the Ensign is trying to get a bead on the damaged Cyper while fighting the loss of maneuverability with the cockpit damage he had already taken, the same Cyper that was on him lights him up one more, stiching his cockpit with rounds. This time there is no canopy to shield Kell and sharp pain shoots through his body as shrapnel cuts into his flightsuit and body. "Ch... Cherry, Razor. I can fight." Either through sheer power of will or just rookie foolhardiness, Razor is still trying to fight on, the adrenaline pumping through his body helping him cope with the pain.
The Cylons seem to be actively avoiding Banshee's viper now, after two of their own have been blown to smithereens. Aubrey's shots at the enemy Viper miss and she curses loudly. "Come on you stupid toaster, you can't avoid me forever." She cheers when Eva grazes it, but it fades when the machine is still flying. "Dammit! Razor is down, I repeat, Razor is down!" She swerves to flank the enemy Viper with Eva and fires.
"Gods damnit! Flight, we just lost Razor." She keys back on her mic, "Vanguard Actual, requesting SAR for one VIPER, last visual was Heading 534 carom 175, Mark 3." And the skies still aren't clear, "Stay on these raiders. They light to shoot the pilots down as they fall."
"I see chute, sending message to Vanguard.." Tucker starts to do the request when his entire nose erupts into flames, blowing apart and cracking the cockpit glass. "Frak!" he hisses as the whole ship rattles and threatens to fall apart in midair.
The amount of damage that Razor's Viper took was astounding and a little surprising, but sooner rather than later, the well engineered craft meets its match and surpasses its own stress limit. Another few rounds punches into the cockpit section of Kell's fighter and this time, the projectiles do not find the pilot but the main computer system. Everything is shorted out and the young Ensign's bird beocmes completely unresponsive. No controls, no power, and no comms. The Viper begins its death spiral towards the ground again and this time no recovery, but soon enough, a parachute opens up, it appears that Kell was still conscious and was able to eject. Slowly, he begins floating down towards Canceron, whether it be Colonial side or Cylon side, he has no idea.
Still, that grim, angry voice from Cherry as her comm crackles, "Splash two. Your tail's clear, for now, Flats, pull back, see if you can evade and get to a safe retrieval space. No way you're getting back to the Vanguard. Banshee, we've still got work to do."
Aubrey watches the Cyper juke her shots and her anger is bubbling over now. Moreso when it returns fire and grazes her wing. "Now I'm angry," she grumbles. Abby is going to kill her for being so gung ho. She dips away from the remains of the last raider as the rest of the patrol brings it down. She fires her KEW at the Cyper that hit her.
"Yeah, this thing's handling like my prom date." Tucker manages as he tries to get the Raptor clear so he can try to keep it together for the flight back to the Vanguard. The two Cypers, now without their Raider escort, try to get in one more attack before they break ranks to retreat towards Cylon held territory.
"Dammit Cherry, this toaster has my number!" Banshee calls out, as her shots are dodged and the bastard leaves a scorched and smoking trail along one of her wings. "Maneuverability is getting bad. Taking evasive action." She shimmies her Viper best she can, while trying to loop around to get a bead on it.
"Sounds like you've got bad taste in prom dates, Flats!" Okay, there's a hint of Cherry's usual humour, as one of those damned camo Cyper's finally goes down, "Splash three. I'm coming, Banshee, one to go. They don't get to get away."
"Thanks Jigger!" Banshee states over the comm. She lets out a breath as the final Cyphon goes down. "Nice shooting!" She banks to come up alongside Eva's Viper.
Eva goes for the Cyper, Aubrey goes for the Cyper, barely a scratch. But you know what they say, don't mess with a missionary man. "And THAT, is why you do not frak with a man from Gemenon. They will cut you." Because after all of that dancing, it's Jigger that takes out the last Cyper.
Not only does Jigger cut in on Banshee and the Cyper's dance, but the rounds from the Viper's autocannons tear through the cockpit, causing it to collapse it on itself, crushing the Cylon within. As he breaks through the cloud of fuel, flame, shrapnel and smoke, and comes up on Banshee's wing, Jigger glances over, offers a lift of his head in a nod to the woman, and there may have been a wink before he's cutting his engines to make sure Kell lands safely. Once done, he'll join the flight back to Vanguard as Tucker continues to nurse the Raptor skyward.
"Flats, you look like shit. I hope you're sure about this." Not that Eva will try to, or could stop the raptor from heading back, but that bus is torn up. "You better have that tape ready." Because space duct tapes seals holes.
"Got plenty of chicken wire and bubblegum, Cherry, I'll make it work." Tucker promises as he turns the Raptor to nurse it back home.
"Back to the barn, Cherry?" Aubrey asks, eyeing her smoking wing through the canopy. "My bird needs some TLC."
"Yeah, I'll cover you, Banshee. Just keep an eye on Flats, yeah? I do not want to have to do SAR for him. We won't both fit in this cockpit."
"Only cause I had one too many biscuits at lunch."