Joined: 06 Nov 2002
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|Posted: Sun, 29. Nov 09, 23:37 Post subject: Deep Six Chapter 13
Chapter 13 Deep Six
Gabe was looking over the logs of his other ships while he waited on Bob to finish up a job and join him on the Seeker. Gabe had been monitoring the sector ever since he got the invite to search it and as far as Pirate sectors went this wasn’t a hot spot by far. The only action he had seen was a pair of Pirate Harriers and a freighter that fly into the sector every other day and wait on a lone freighter trying to save time by making a straight run through to save time gets shot at till he drops some freight to satisfy his attackers. Then the run down freighter picks up the freight and the three go off to the Pirate Station and in the next sector and repeat the process every two to three days. The Pirate Station just through the East Gate in Brennan’s Triumph is a beehive of activity with Pirate ships setting and waiting on someone to fly into there sector to attack.
Gabe watches on the viewer as a freighter enters the sector and a lone Pirate Buster heads out at full speed to intercept and fires on the freighter. The other Pirate ships must know something is up as they turn the other way and retreat as Buzzard clears the Gate and opens up on the Pirate Buster attacking the freighter. Then a Nova clears the Gate and makes quick waste of the what was left of the Buster that was attacking the freighter. The Buzzard picked up the missiles dropped by the gung ho Pirate that made a deadly mistake then rejoined his group. Gabe watched as the convoy flew on through the sector unchallenged while the Pirates stayed clear lurking off in the distance waiting on a easier mark to stray into their sector.
Gabe get a message from Bob stating he’ll be there in two hours and the crew will be back in three so Gabe refocuses his attention on Split Fire. He watches as the two Pirate Harriers wait off in the background near the Pirate Vulture. The Pirates had been in the sector for a day and half and it was about time for them to make their move on something. Gabe watched as a Octopus entered the sector and pulled away from the Gate. Then a Dolphin entered the sector and set course for the South Gate as the Octopus fell into a escort position. Gabe seen the Pirate Harriers take out on a intercept course for the Dolphin after it was into the sector and couldn’t get away. The Dolphin stayed to it course at a snails pace compared to the Harriers closing quickly on the Dolphin Two drones are lunched from the Dolphin as the Octopus turns to intercept the Pirates while the Dolphin stays its course strait for the Gate.
One of the drones are taken out while the Octopus fires a wasp at one of the Harriers the other Pirate Harrier fires a wasp back at the Octopus. While the two ship turn to take out the incoming missiles the second Harrier lines up on the Octopus and opens fire while the Pilot is focused on the missile ripping its two shields away and badly damaging it hull in seconds. As the Harrier destroys the missile on its tale while the missile on the Octopus missed on its first run it turns to retarget its now setting target. The one Pirate Harrier sets by to watch the Octopus blow up while the other Pirate Harrier races to the Dolphin.
The Octopus explodes and disappears from the screen while the Pirate watching picks up the dropped missile and heads for the Dolphin now under fire. Gabe watches trying to decide if he could help but knows he needs to stay where he is as the two Harriers drop the shields on the Dolphin and the Pilot ejects.
Gabe watches as the ejected Pilot is picked up and the Dolphin changes course for the East Gate now under the control of the Pirates. Gabe looks at the ID codes of the Harriers and copies them down on his PDA as he clenches his fist deciding at that moment they had better not come into the sector while they were there because he planed on making an exception about attacking Pirates in the sector for them.
[Bit] “Gabe your Uncle has just enter the Sector.”
Gabe watched the Pirates as the Vulture fell in behind the Dolphin as the group headed for the East Gate.
[Gabe] “Bit turn off the monitor. Where’s Bob and how’s the crew doing?”
[Bit] “Bob is requesting permission to dock and the crew has one and a half more hours left in the simulators.”
[Gabe] “Dock him in port three I’m on my way to meet him at the transport.”
Bob stepped off the transporter saying. “I’m here we can leave now.”
[Gabe] “We’ll be ready in a about two hours.”
Bob looked around as the two of them walked down the main hall. “Gabe where’s the crew?”
[Gabe] “They’re at the Station getting some fighter simulator time in. They’ll be back in a couple of hours then we can leave. Tell me what you know about the sector while we wait.”
Bob smiled. “I don’t know much you may find about anything there every known race has fought a massive battle in that sector at one time so I would advise a very deep search. You may hit the jackpot and find a capitol ship worth fixing or a hidden Xenon Station or a Gate to a new sector take you pick.”
[Gabe] “You’re not being much help Bob. Let me show you my plans on searching the sector while we eat a snack and I will extend the search area.”
[Bob] “How about a meal I haven’t eat.”
Gabe told Bob his plans while they ate and talked waiting on the crew to get back.
As soon as the crew got back and settled in Gabe checked the Sector map out in his room and seen it was clear and announced they were going to jump. The crew stood by as the Ship cleared the Gate into Split Fire and pulled away from the Gate while the jump drive charged taking them above the scanner range of the traffic and stations. Gabe deployed the satellite and the sector came back into view. Gabe looked over at Luke and Jack. “Are you two ready to get started the sector is quite and now’s as good a time as any?”
The two looked back. “Yes Sir.”
Gabe smiled. “Then take off.” Bob sent the station owner a message telling him they were there and thanks.
The two took off finding a few small missiles around the sectors borders but everyone watched until the ships were well out of scanner range of ships entering the sector. A message came in from Luke four hours out his hole was full and he needed a pickup. Simon took the Nova and made the pickup. A hour later Jack called for a pickup and a ship he spotted for them to check out. This time Simon took Mike with him to make the run.
They all set waiting on a message form the Nova to find out what kind of ship it was and was it worth trying to salvage. The ship turned out to be a old model of the Paranid Pegasus and it was salvageable. Mike had transported over and was making repairs inside to the systems while a repair drone worked on the rest of the ship.
The older version of the Pegasus wasn’t much more that a pair of shields and a single weapon strapped on a engine and the second version wasn’t much better but did have two weapons. But there speed was unmatched even by race ships of the day. Repair lasers were just a wishful ideal a few years ago and if the pilot of that ship had one he may have been able to repair the ship and make it back to his base.
Luke called right before his shift was over and reported a second ship but he had Identified it as a old N class Xenon ship surrounded by two hulled out half’s of Xenon fighters and some debris. The Nova was about to return to the Seeker with Mike to pick up the girls to start the second shift while the drone worked on the last repairs needed to get the Pegasus flying.
Simon jumped back and transferred the freight over and picked up the Girls and the extra repair kit and drone and jumped away. First stop Jack and then Luke and on to the N while the search continued.
The N was in good shape considering it had been adrift in space for who knows how long.
This time the drone transported over and got the ship repaired in about a hour after repairing the ships computer and restarting the systems. They transported the drone back over and set the auto pilot on the N to go to the Seeker. They jumped back to the Pegasus and picked up the drone and sent the ship on to the Seeker. The Nova docked and unloaded the freight while Gabe tried to decide what to do with two ships so early on in the search they knew they were going to sell.
So Gabe made the call to keep the ships close to the Seeker and use the repair lasers in the turrets to finish repairing the hulls to full. A supply of equipment had been picked up and inventory on the last run the Nova had salvaged from the hulled out ships near both ships with the transporter that could be installed on the two ships.
The first ship to make it was the Pegasus that was faster in it’s damaged state than the N was maxed out.
Everyone was excited as they looked out at the tiny ship as it moved around while the repair lasers did their job fixing the hull. Luke and Jack had went to bed with the rest of the crew to get some sleep in case they were needed to relieve someone after the Pegasus showed up and everyone got a good look.
The Pegasus was already repaired and parked in a holding position when the N eased into the firing range of the lasers and the repairs started.
Gabe looked at the N as the lasers worked on the fractures in its hull. Simon had been making the runs and had went to bed along with everyone else for the same reason this sector was keeping everyone hopping. Gabe was weary as he waited on Mike and Steve to show up so he could make the last run and he was going to try and rest a little in between shifts. Just as Gabe, Steve and Mike were about to leave when Donna sent a message. “Ships hole full found wreckage of two Xenon Capital ships and fighters scattered around the area. Scans show two fighters may be worth claming and lots of freight I’m unable to carry. I am holding position and waiting on pickup.”
Gabe looked at the message Donna had hit the jackpot and found two capitol ships and a collection of fighters. They loaded both drones and jumped to pick up Ann first and let Steve take her place. Then jumped to meet up with Donna. Mike wanted to see the ships to see how many they could salvage before he took off. He searched the scans for ship number three but no such luck Donna had made the right call two ships was it the rest were scrap. Donna transported the freight over and Mike took her place and restarted the search.
[Donna] “Was this what you were looking for Captain? We’ll get a good bonus out of this sector!”
[Gabe] “This is a good find but I was hopping for a TL we could fix and use as a base to work out of.”
[Donna] “I seen a old Paranid TL stuck on the surface of a ore asteroid with a slight magnetic field but when I scanned it there was nothing in it. It was like someone had picked it clean! I think the Xenon had to have stripped every part out of it after they disabled it and it drifted onto the asteroid and stuck.”
Gabe claimed the two ships and transported the drones and repair kits over and looked at Donna intently. “Did you run a advanced scan on the TL?”
[Donna] “No just a standard scan I could see it was a old TL. Did I do something wrong?”
[Gabe] “No but when we’re through here I want to take a closer look at it on the way back. I heard about Pirates using crates that were lined with a material that showed up as ore with a small magnetic field and standard scanners couldn’t read the contents of the crates. It was all hearsay but all sector security forces use advanced scanners now. It may not be nothing but I want to look anyway.”
The ship was scanning the field transporting part after part onboard the Nova and back to the old Xenon N and old Paranid Pericles the drones were repairing. Gabe had closed his eyes and stretched was out. When Donna woke him up. “Hay Gabe wake up the both ships are ready to go and the drones and kits are onboard.”
Gabe looked at his watch he had been out for five hours. Gabe looked over at Ann who was asleep and told Donna. “I’m sorry Donna I was planning on returning to the Seeker so we could all get some rest we’ll jump back now.”
[Donna] “Ann just woke me up she stayed up and let us sleep but not she wants to sleep a little while we look at the TL.”
Gabe sent a message to the Seeker to jump close by and pick up the ships and freight. Seconds later the Seeker was there with Simon asking. “You been gone a while is everything alright?”
[Gabe] “I fell asleep and they let me sleep till the ship were ready. I’ll transport the freight over is Luke and Jack up?”
[Simon] “Yes.” Gabe looked at Donna. “You and Ann trans port back to the Seeker and get some rest I’ll take Luke and Jack with me.” Gabe opened the Com. “Simon send Luke and Jack over and our special drone. Donna and Ann are transporting over to get some rest I want to go look at a stripped TL Donna seen before we jump back.”
Bob opened the com. “Gabe can I come with you I just been setting around?”
[Gabe] “Of course transport over and Simon transport over two of the heavy EVA work suits. We have one but I want two more.”
[Simon] “Alright Gabe be careful and don’t forget the shift change.”
[Gabe] “Roger that.”
Bob was onboard with the suits and Luke and Jack Gabe made one last scan of the area than jumped after the Seeker jumped away. Gabe closed on the massive TL it had been in a serious battle and the normal scan showed it was empty. But the new intense scanner showed a different story when they got close enough and turned it on. The equipment was there but everything was off line and badly damaged. The hull had to many holes in it to count. Gabe stared at the old beaten down monster of a ship trying to decide if he wanted to try and fix it or just fly away.
Bob spoke up. “Gabe I know your trying to decide if it worth it or not and I say it is because of the hull its made out of a scan resistant material that alone is worth something. I say fix it! Besides it’s a hybrid version of the old box model TL and the turtle looking model and it has four turrets and five shield slots I like it.”
Luke Spoke up. “It is different and it’s as big as a small station it would make a nice base.”
[Gabe] “I’ll send the security drone over get some ideal of what the inside looks like first.”
Gabe transported the drone into the heart of the ship. The video showed it had been in a fight as plasma burns reached through out the ship the main power generator room was the main target of the attack and was about gone just housing hulled out pieces of equipment. The turrets and bridge were gone as the camera drone showed the empty holes they were in as it flew around. Three of the shields were gone and the forth was in peaces but the fifth shield could be repaired. Which gave them a ray of hope as the drone moved on into the ship. Gabe stopped the drone and sent it into a room that translated backup generator.
The drone worked on getting the big blast door open and as it slid open a body came floating out then another. Five Paranid had held up in the room waiting on a rescue that never came. The drone scanned the generator room it was in good shape it was the rest of the ship that had it shorted out.
So now they would have some power it was the rest of the ship that was problem.
Gabe called Simon and told him about the TL and asked him to pick up the satellite they were moving the base of operations to where the TL was. Dock the claimed ships and jump to meet them near the TL.”
Gabe sent the drones over to start work on the TL while they waited on the Seeker to jump to there position.
The Seeker jumped in and dropped the satellite. “I‘m sending the ships a message telling them our new location transport over and fill me in.”
Gabe transported over and started transporting equipment over to the TL needed in the repairs. And asked Simon to jump to Paranid Prime and sell the ships and missiles they had collected in the sector. Then jump to Argon Space and buy two large construction units with power supplies and a dozen repair drones, kits and lasers and jump back to the TL.
The plan was to get the ship off the asteroid, repaired and flying stable. Then install a jump drive and jump to the safety of a Argon sector and finish the repairs.
Gabe received a message from Mike asking about the shift change. Gabe looked at his watch and again he was late. “Simon undock Bobs ship I’ll leave him here to watch the TL while I make the shift change. Can you make it back in eight hours?”
[Simon] “If I can’t does it really matter we’re going to be here a while tell them to take it easy or fly till I get back we did 12 hour shifts remember. I hurry if I can and don’t get hurt in that heap while I‘m gone.”
Gabe jumped back over to his Nova and jumped away while Bob watched over the site in his Nova.
The security drones job now was collecting the dead bodies while it searched the ship for dangers and storing them in a empty container still secured in the massive cargo hole. Gabe planed on returning them to the Paranid as soon as he could get the ship safely out of the sector.
Gabe made the shift change and transported the freight over and as Steve transported onboard he asked Gabe to look at the scan of a door he found floating in space and picked up. The Nova jumped back to the TL as Gabe and Steve looked at the scans of the door.
[Gabe] “That can’t be right!” Gabe transported the door into the back of the ship and went to scan it with his hand scanner. He took the scans and again it showed the same as the ships scans. Gabe looked at the door it opened up to a solid bulkhead going nowhere but the scans showed a unknown weak power signature compressed in subspace when you did a advanced scan.
Gabe looked and tried to get the door open but no luck and Mike was wanting to go over to theTL so The door went back into the hole and safe keeping for another day their main concern now was the TL.
Bob transported back over as Mike tried to talk Gabe into letting him go over the TL and look around.
And the only thing Gabe could think of was Simon telling him not to get hurt. Gabe told Mike no the ship wasn’t cleared to board until the security drone finished it search monitor the repair drones or get some sleep. To Mike it was like teasing a kid with candy for the TL to be setting out there and he couldn’t get to it. But after he seen Gabe wasn’t going to give in he looked over the scans of the TL and tried to relax.