The Air Wing goes to finish off the castle the Marines hit.
Location: Skies over Canceron
Related Scenes: None
Scene Number: 773
A combat team was quickly assembled and sent from the ship to head to Canceron's surface to engage the transports and their escorts, while a single Raptor has been sent with a full bomb load to destroy the castle into rubble. In that Raptor, Tucker transmits, "Flight, Flats, we're approaching the target zone. Eyes on DRADIS, ears for the tweets, getting ready to start our run, try to keep us clean."
Go figure, Aubrey's attempt to swap out duties with someone so she could stay with Abigail got derailed by Cylons. Frakking cylons. She is sick to death of the damned things. "Banshee to Flats, copy that, falling into escort formation." She draws the stick over to bring her to one side of the Raptor, keeping her eyes moving to and from DRADIS.
You know what makes this war so much better than the end of the world? A seemingly endless supply of Vipers. After destroying, or nearly so, yet another one, Cherry is back on the hunt, looking none the worse for wear. Damned cylons did destroy her Leonis flag though, so she has a brand new one tucked into her brand new cockpit. "Copy that, Flats. We're with you."
Finn, as usual for Finn, flies as many flights as he can fly. Even if he did just get a Viper blown up with Cherry. Of course, this is his first blown up Viper. Up to that point, he's barely even had a scuffed up Viper. So much for his untouchable reputation. He's flying Cherry's wing, as usual, "Roger that, Flats."
Irene's raptor is second in line, presumably for dropping even more bombs on the castle. Redundancies are good. Her bus is the same as before, the dented armor smoothed out but the paint still shiny metal where the Cylon kew hits burnt it away. Polka-dot camouflage. She's got Wooley, the grumpy 'old man' ECO again and she's idly harrassing him with an awful joke about fish, because he's from Picon so obviously he likes fish. "...because pepper makes them sneeze." She punchlines. His mouth screws into a tight frown.
With the flight coming in to make it's run, both of the ECOs call out contacts from the AA-Batteries on site. Outside of the castle, a Heavy Raider is currently landing to disgorge its troops, the Centurions coming out of the back of it, as another Heavy Raider is making a circle, flanked by a pair of Raiders. When the alert goes up, the Heavy Raider and two Raiders break pattern to head towards the flight, even as the weapons of the castle come to life.
If Aubrey didn't hate the Cylons enough, last night she found out one of her very best friends, her first puppy love crush as a kid, and someone as dear to her as a real brother, was shot down over Picon behind enemy lines months ago. And that friend's twin is currently badly injured in sick bay, grieving over the news, while she has to be out here. To say she is flying pissed tonight is the understatement of the century.
"We have fat birds and skinny birds on their way. Let's ruffle their feathers! Banshee engaging!" Aubrey quips over the comm. She rolls her Viper to one side to dip down and under Tucker's Raptor, before accelerating towards the enemy line. She arcs towards one of the lighter Raiders, looking to thin the numbers before tackling the heavies.
Eva, hearing the call for the approaching enemy, adjusts her thrusters, taking herself, rather recklessly, but what else is new, into the fray.
What is it with Heavy Raiders and Finn? When the call to arms comes out, Finn also engages afterburners and rockets off towards the heavy raider that's already lined up on him. "Farm Boy egnaging heavy..." And apparently, he's spending too much time with Eva, because he's going in top speed, and moving in a straight line. Smart. Real smart.
Well, now is no time to be practicing a comedy routine. Irene gets to business, turning her head to try and get a visual on the incoming raiders, leaning into her straps as she does. "This is going to get bumpy, Wooley." She says matter-of-factly, giving the raptor a little weave as if to make the Cylons burn some cycles trying to process her intentions. She doesn't break though, trying to more or less keep on her line to the bombing area. "That one coming in looks hungry. Jam him up."
Explosions light up the castle grounds as the Raptors make their first pass. A missile explosion next to Tucker's raptor brings a sharp cry of pain from the back of it. "Grasshopper? Do you copy?" Silence comes from the back of the Raptor where smoke and flames are sparking from the console, the ECO slumped over in his seat. "Frak.." Tucker offers. "Flight, Flats, I'm hit.. pretty bad. Cherry, you're in charge of the flight, we're going to to try to continue the run, over."
"At your 3 o'clock Farmboy!," Aubrey calls out as she moves opposite Finn's Viper to flank the light raider. She sends out a stream of fire at the enemy ship, scoring hits across its nose which spark and smoke, venting gasses into space. The enemy fires back but the armor of her ship deflects any damage other than scoring the paint. She turns to make a second pass.
With the pilot and the heavy going head to head, Eva gets in a bare hit, but manages to avoid more than the same, but she's too far to do anything to help Flats and his ECO, "Flight, form up on the raptor. Nothing else get to them. We finish the mission and then go home."
Missile incoming? Flying at break neck speeds? Barrel roll time! Finn does just that and rolls out of the way of the missile. He fires off a burst of rounds at the heavy raider, and then banks left at the call from Aubrey. "That heavies too slow to take me down..." Finn calls back over his comm. He does however tone down the aggressive flying before switching targets to the heavy raider focusing on him, "Banshee, you got this one, I'm going after the that bigun over there..." That is shooting missiles at me.
Bumpy was Irene's prognosis, and she wasn't entirely wrong. SAM missiles streak up from the mess of green below to meet the pair of raptors. Wooley drops a flare and the missile intended for them veers off like an angry snake and explodes to port and well below. Not one to let such a provocation go unanswered, she smoothly banks and sends a missile at one of the sites just as Tucker ahead takes a hit. It goes up in a dirty blast of fire, shredded vegetation and dirt. "Flats, you're trailing smoke." She notes with concern, incase he's unaware.
The missiles continue to fly, as Tucker cuts and tries to flare his suppressors and get his fire suppression going. "I know, Iris, I know. Flying it like my ass is on fire." he manages with a pained breath as he launches a missile that streaks past the battery and slams into the wall beyond. "...we need to finish the mission, though."
Banshee calls back, "Copy that, Farmboy. Let's clear the path for Flats!" She zips across the light raider's wake, spiraling in a barrel roll to come at the Cylon ship's side. Her KEW fire slices across the body of the raider, chewing it up, before she breaks hard left to dodge return fire. She evades it easily, making it look like the Cylon was in slow motion as she waggles her wings at it before rounding for another strafing run.
Oh, this cylon is a slippery one, but Cherry seems to be determined, a dog with a bone, as she sweeps back around, not allowing herself to think about the fact that she missed, to congratulate herself on evading herself. This damned cylon is going down.
Second missile dodged as Finn looses countermeasures and dives under it. He only manages to graze the heavy as he pulls back up from the evasive tactic and then arcs away to come back in for another pass, this time speeding up from the arc.
"It is on fire." Irene gently corrects, but she's flying through the same violent storm as Flats. She doesn't get through it unscathed, the second SAM sent after her bus is not discouraged by the chaff but at least is confused enough not to hit dead center. Instead, the raptor takes one on the wing, sending it shuddering into a clumsy, ugly barrel roll. That's about all that saves her from the follow up kew fire from the raider that comes at her nearly head on. She reflexively tries to put a missile into it, but no luck, it flies off into the blue skies. "Flight, getting beat up over here."
Cherry: "We're coming. Frakking cylons. Just hold on!"
What the frak! Gods damnit," Cherrys' voice is livid, as she sees Iris' raptor take yet another hit, and she sweeps back around, "Goddamnit, we need to get those raptors clear!
When the call to form up comes across the comm, Aubrey fires a quick volley at the light raider she'd been chasing and merely grazes it, before breaking off to help out the Raptors. The Cylon marks up some more paint on her Viper's nose, but she ignores it. "Banshee is coming in Flats, Iris."
"Iris, Flats, drop drop payload!" Tucker calls out. They're both getting beat to hell, and while they aren't going to get a full strike, they have to try at least. His Raptor takes several more hits as they streak over the target zone. "Hit and fall back!"
Finn's viper shudders as he takes a hit on his wing. Despite having landed a hit of his own. "Frak. I'm coming, I'm coming. Farm Boy engaging." And then he disengages from the heavy and targets the Cent to help out the Raptor.
Irene's vision basically turns into a brilliant white flash just as she's bringing the raptor back into line. It follows a split second later with a thunderclap that shakes the bus and punches it through with holes. The shrapnel from the cylon missile pours through the cockpit and straight out the back, taking out electronics with sparks and smoke, and the people inside with the tearing of fabric and flesh. Wooley folds up in his chair like he's been abruptly deflated, Irene curls up like a heavyweight just sucker-punched her in the stomach. Were it not for her straps, she'd be on the floor, but they cut into her shoulders and bring her around with their biting. "We're hit.... Wooley?" She says, but mostly in her head. Her tongue is lead.
This seems to be the heavy that just refuses to die, because all three of the vipers are on it, and it barely seems to take a scratch. Well, maybe the next time will pay for all, "Raptors, you both need to bug out. You're shot to hell." Of course, as most pilots, they do what they want.
Tucker's first bombload falls away, splashing against the wall of the castle. It's a hard hit that explodes out a large portion of the wall, but otherwise does no appreciable damage. Irene's first drop slams into the aa battery, destroying it utterly, as the rest of her bombs splash into the courtyard, destroying several Cylons on the ground. The firing from the Raiders slams into Tucker's Raptor. "...unable to make a second run, Iris, will follow you in, my weapons systems are out."
Aubrey spirals in towards the heavy raider on Irene, and she triggers her KEW when she has a good shot. She scores a few hits, but they don't do enough damage to disable the Heavy. "Dammit," she curses over the comm, as her Viper bucks as the Cylon she abandoned comes around to do some serious damage to one wing. "Took a hit! Starboard engine is not happy with me, but I'm still going!" She tries to line up another shot on the heavy.
Finn, heavy still on his tail, rockets after the Cent on Irene to try and help out. His Viper is hit again, and he's now dangerously close to pulling a Kell. Finn spins after the hit to his same wing as before, pulling hard at the stick to keep level as he shoots the Cent and rockets away, taking a more defensive posture now.
There's a lot of fresh air whipping through Irene's stricken raptor now, she knows that, because when she reaches to arm the second round of bombs she notes the funny way the blood coming out of the sleeve of her flightsuit seems to be crawling up her shoulder rather than pouring directly to the floor. Maybe she shouldn't look at too closely. Her name on the comm brings her out of that short reverie, "Copy that, Flats." She manages to say aloud this time. "Wooley, get on the gun." No reply there. Still, she has wits enough to fly and as more kew fire patters on her hull she gets the raptor burning, coming around for hopefully the last pass.
Irene's bombs strike through, the commo station explodes, lighting up the area for a moment as Tucker's flyby confirms it. "Target's down! Break!" he calls out to Irene. "Flight, objective hit, RTB." It's time to get away from these crazy angry Raiders that seem hard to hit.
Aubrey's KEW sprays bullets at the heavy, but the Cylon ship evades. She is close to screaming in frustration, especially as that damned light raider is back on her tail, and only stopped by virtue of her Viper's armor. "What in Hades if flying that thing!" she calls over the comm. She makes a turn to come around, but she really wants one more shot at the light that won't leave her be.
"Iris, Flats, return to the ship. Farm Boy, Banshee, covering fire on them until we can get them back to the barn." Eva maneuvers, trying to actively engage the raiders to keep herself always between the raptors and enemy ships.
Farm Boy, you're a better shot than I am...see if you can clear those raiders. I can stay on the heavy.
Finn breaks away from the Heavy he's engaged with and rockets off after the Cylon on Cherry, "Roger that, focusing on the raiders. Someone see if they can keep this heavy from shooting me again?" Since he couldn't manage to even hit it on his last pass. Better shot his ass. Once more, Finn takes a more aggressive posture, to try and take out the Raider quickly.
Something else comes flying through the cockpit and puts a groove across Irene's armor vest before punching out through the ceiling. Kew? She has no time to really dwell on it, bombs dropped and an inferno in her wake, she shakes her tail and burns hard to put some distance between her and that mess of violence. "Flight, this is Iris... making." Something. Right, from the academy textbook, memorized, "Orderly withdrawal." Fairly orderly, anyway, she looks for Flats while trying not to drift all over the sky. "Wooley is not okay." She adds.
Aubrey fires a spray of bullets across the body of the light raider, before having to pull up hard and barrel roll to avoid return fire. "This thing can't stay in one piece much longer!" she grunts. She comes at it again, full out angry now. It feels like the Cylons are mocking them.
These cylons are not making it easy, and the hits just keep on coming. But there's nothing for it but flight and fight, as the vipers continue trying to keep the worst of the hits from the two raptors limping back to the ship. "Iris, Flats, continue back to base, as quickly" note Eva doesn't say as safely, "as you can, we will cover you."
Welp...Finn apparently is having some trouble here. "Frak...Farm Boy sticking on rear guard. Everyone else needs to hurry up with the bugging out. These raiders are tougher than they used to be."
Again, the cockpit of Irene's raptor lights up and turns into a wasps nest of flying metal and kew rounds that rip through, hot neon. Something hits her in the stomach... again... and she sags forward into her straps. The bus weaves and drifts before she comes to, sucks in a sharp breath against the pain and tries to find her heading once more. No talking. Can't. She just focuses on that limp home.
The Raptors get safely away, one of the Raiders finally going down in flames, leaving only a couple of Raiders and the Heavies still in retreat.
This time, Aubrey's shots strike true, and the body of the light raider belches smoke as it drifts, dead in the void of space. "One more down! Coming to assist, Farmboy!" She curves in to help flank the light that is tussling with Finn.
Cherry and Farm Boy, they've had months to perfect their flight patterns, to anticipate where one was weak and the other strong, and Eva sweeps in now, keying up her mic, "Just hold him right there, Farm Boy, I'm coming for you." Of course, she'll need to clear the frakker between her and her wingman.
Finn once more just grazes the Cylon raider, but does manage to evade being shot himself. And then both of the other pilots are coming in to attack his target. "I'll never double ace at this rate!" Finn calls out into his comm, chuckling just after, "Banshee you come in high. Don't pull through my line of fire."
Eva manges to clear the cylon on her tail, jackknifing her viper back around as she takes off towards the final cylon, who seems intent on putting a few more holes into Farm Boy.
"Beautiful shot Mom!" Aubrey calls over the comm. Clearly she isn't letting go of the mom and dad thing. She follows Finn's lead, and comes in high, strafing the body of the Cylon and making it leak all sorts of fluids which freeze in the vacuum outside of it. "He's looking raggedy, Farmboy, think we can finish him!"
"Frakkin mother frakker..." Finn mutters into his comm, still coming around again on the only raider left. Seriously, this is the caziest cylon ever. Everything else has already bugged out.
Aubrey comes at the raider again, opposite of Finn's position, so they can sandwich the bastard in between their crossfire. She strafes one side of its body with KEW fire in concert with the other pilot on the opposite side. "Last bandit down! Banshee is heading home!"
Eva, now, falls back into rearguard, allowing Finn up ahead, eyes studying his ship, studying all of the ships, as she rides the rest of the way back to the ship. "Get in, get down."