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Topic:  Trykon: SCFE
Trykon
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Trykon
 
[VE-NAVY] Chief Petty Officer
 
Post Number:  183
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  Trykon: SCFE
March 30, 2011 12:48:35 AM    View the profile of Trykon 
Ship Captain Fitness Exam, Mission Prompt A, Post 1: "Routine Beginnings"

“Captain Trykon?” a youthful, feminine voice called from the forward section of the cargo hold, over the background din of men and machines scrambling to stow the last few crates of consumables needed for the coming patrol.  “Eslara says Abrae Control’s cleared us for departure, and we’re all ready to go down here.”

Wyl Trykon, conferring with Doc Gibbs in the aft of the hold about the brand-new bacta tanks up in the Duty’s Med-lab, pointedly ignored the shout behind him.  “Well, keep Three Tank drained if you think it’s necessary, Doc, but I want One and Two available for the mission.”  He thumb-signed the datapad bearing Gibbs’s request, and handed it back to the Duty’s Chief Medical Officer.

Gibbs raised an eyebrow.  “Sir…?”

“I heard her,” Trykon sighed.  “But she needs to learn some discipline.”

“Aye sir,” the other said, giving a circumspect nod.  “I’ll just be in Medical, then,” the blue-eyed healer said, making his way to the lift.

“Captain Trykon?” the high-pitched voice repeated, closer this time.  Trykon closed his eyes and exhaled, and waited until the approaching footsteps faltered and then halted behind him.  With a slow, deliberate grace, the captain of the Warden-class Light Cruiser Duty turned around and leveled a cold stare at the speaker.

Triz Bukk, his young Chief Engineer, looked up at him hesitantly.  “Um, Captain…”  She trailed off, withering under Trykon’s disapproving look.

Trykon felt his glare soften, looking at the bright-eyed Zabrak engineer.  It was difficult to be stern with anyone so earnest, and after all, Trykon had known what he was getting into when he’d requested Bukk for the Duty.  Sure, the sallow-skinned Zabrak had acquired a reputation at the Academy as a kind of prodigy, but for all her savant-like skills with machines, Bukk was barely post-pubescent, and her youth really showed in her ignorance of military regulations and occasional lack of focus.  And if I can’t teach her the importance of concentration and proper discipline, she may never get beyond late adolescence, Trykon thought.  When he spoke, he forced steel into his tone: “You’re on a warship in the service of the Vast Empire, Ms. Bukk, not some pleasure barge with your friends.”

Bukk’s shoulders slumped.  “Okay,” she muttered.  “I mean, yes, sir.  Discipline,” she added, declining her head for emphasis in an endearing gesture which also managed to convey contrition.

Wyl couldn’t help but smile, but he resisted the impulse to laugh and put the young engineer at ease; being friendly now would only blunt the lesson he was trying to impart.  “That’s right, Ms. Bukk: discipline.  Discipline is the only thing that keeps this little durasteel box together when the blaster bolts cross.  You’re going to need to cultivate some discipline if you want to keep your friends alive up there,” he pointed at the hold’s ceiling, and the sky far beyond, “so just get in the habit of calling them by their surnames when you’re on duty, okay?”

“Yes sir.”

“So, why don’t you tell me again what you were so eager to report that you yelled at me down the length of the deck,” he prompted gently.

The Zabrak screwed up her face in thought, the delicate lines of her tattoos accentuating the muscle movements.  “There was a message for you from Chief Brin, up on the bridge, sir,” the youngster said with exaggerated care.  “She relays our clearance from Command to lift off.”

“Much better, Ms. Bukk,” Trykon said, with a genuine smile.  “We’ll make a sailor of you, yet.”

The Zabrak returned the grin.  “Yes sir,” she nodded.  “I also wanted to add, sir, that all ship’s stores are aboard, and the Duty awaits your command to get underway.”

“See, Ms. Bukk?  Navy-talk’s easy, once you get into the rhythm.”  He flashed her another smile.  “Very well.  Report to the Engine Room.  It’s time we start this patrol.”

Triz saluted, sloppily, and turned to leave for her post.  Wyl let his gaze wander from her retreating form around the cargo hold, at all the droids and crewers going about their business.  He took a deep breath.  My ship, he thought.  My crew.  Let’s go do our duty, Duty.  He made for the port-side lift, and pressed the button for A Deck; moments later, the door slid open, and he walked into the cramped command center of the Warden-class Light Cruiser.

Eslara Brin was waiting for him.  “Captain on the bridge!” the red-skinned Twi-lek announced, and the four other officers on the command deck quickly pushed out of their chairs and stood at attention.

As a first-time ship captain, Trykon found that having the customary naval courtesy directed at him was actually quite touching, but it wouldn’t do to let his emotions show in front of his new crew.  “As you were,” he said, waving the bridge officers back into their seats.  “We’ve got work to do.”

Everyone resumed their preflight tasks, except Eslara, who took a small step toward Wyl and whispered conspiratorially: “How are you feeling, Captain?”  The Twi’lek’s green eyes sparkled affectionately over her characteristic, knowing smile, and Wyl could feel blood rushing to his face.  So much for not letting the crew see your emotions, the new captain thought, as the heat of the blush peaked.  Then again, Eslara’s more than a mere subordinate.  Trykon thought of their brief service together on the Hammer, and their subsequent holo-correspondence, and his conflicted decision to put in for Eslara’s transfer to his command.  Exactly how much more she is, I’m not sure.  But for now, it’s nice to have somebody aboard who knows me as more than an Imperial Captain, he thought, his embarrassment beginning to subside.

“Anxious,” he admitted, in the same hushed tone the Lethan Twi’lek had used.  “Both in the sense of being nervous, and in the sense of being eager.”

“Don’t be nervous,” Eslara cooed, reaching out to stroke Wyl’s arm reassuringly.  He instinctively pulled back from the touch, glancing at the other crewers.  The Twi’lek’s brain tails twitched wildly.  “Sorry,” she whispered, slowly letting her red hand drop back to her side.

“Gotta be captain-y in front of the crew,” he said, forcing an easy tone, and silently cursing the presence of the others.

“Of course.  Go be a captain.  And don’t be nervous,” she added with a wink.  She turned, sweeping her lekku over her shoulders, and walked up to the Duty’s Helm, to her position at Astrogation.

Trykon took a moment to survey the Warden-class Cruiser’s bridge: his human pilot Drackon was completing his preflight checklist, with Eslara warming up the astrogation computer beside him; the other Twi’lek, Kath Notra, was manipulating a tactical display at the Sensors station, while his gruff-but-efficient Trandoshan Weapons Coordinator Zark looked on; his dark-haired human second-in-command, Master Chief Phylus, nodded at him from the Communications station.  He thought of Gibbs draining a bacta tank in the Med-lab, and young Bukk degreasing some engine component down on D Deck, and he smiled.  They’re a good crew, he told himself, so be a worthy captain.

“Orders, Cap’n?” his XO asked.

“Up and out, Chief.”

“Very good, sir.  Department heads, report.”

The command crew reported all sections ready for departure, so Trykon came up behind Phylas and flicked a switch on the Communications board.  “All hands, this is the Captain.  Take a look around you.  The Duty is a fine ship, with a select crew, tasked with a sacred responsibility: we serve the Vast Empire, enforcing Galactic law and order, supporting stability and prosperity, and defending the lives and livelihoods of Imperial citizens.  Be worthy of your crewmates on the Duty, and never forget her name.”  He cut the transmission.

“Nice speech,” Phylas said mildly.  At first, Wyl thought his XO might be teasing him, but the man’s expression was sober and respectful.  The other officers, too, seemed to be sitting up a little straighter in their seats.

“Thanks.  Let’s get spaceborne, team.”

Under the control of its competent crew, the Warden-class Light Cruiser Duty lifted off from the planet Abrae, and minutes later Wyl’s first capital ship command in the Vast Empire Navy cleared the world’s atmosphere, beginning its first, month-long patrol with Wyl Trykon as Ship Captain.

OOC:
1,369 words
"Don't look for the difficulty in every opportunity; find the opportunity in every difficulty." -- Wyl Trykon

Imperial Network Star Wars Image

BO/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/mSSD Atrus/TF:A/1FL/CSS/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)
BO/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/mSSD Atrus/TF:A/1FL/CSS/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)

TO/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/PLT Cappadocious/VENA/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)
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/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/PLT Cappadocious/VENA/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)
[This message has been edited by Trick (edited March 30, 2011 12:55:55 AM)]
[This message has been edited by Trick (edited March 30, 2011 12:56:13 AM)]
[This message has been edited by Trick (edited March 31, 2011 5:54:22 AM)]
Trykon
ComNet Initiate
 
Trykon
 
[VE-NAVY] Chief Petty Officer
 
Post Number:  184
Total Posts:  3784
Joined:  Feb 2011
Status:  Offline
  RE: Trykon: SCFE
March 30, 2011 12:52:58 AM    View the profile of Trykon 
Ship Captain Fitness Exam, Mission Prompt A, Post 2: "Customs and Complications"

“Would you knock it off, Jayne?  I’m fixing Cutie’s leg as quick as I can,” Triz Bukk snapped at her Verpine-built J-9 protocol droid, from her kneeling position at the broad metal feet of the three-meters-tall binary load lifter QT-QD she’d nicknamed Cutie, twirling the fusion cutter in her hand absentmindedly.

“Mazzzter, Drone Jaynine-Artoo will not ceazzze and desizzzt, azzz you requezzzt,” the insectoid droid buzzed in his flat monotone.  “Azzz an efficienzzzy expert, it izzz Drone Jaynine-Artoo’zzz duty to suggezzzt—”

“It’s your duty to suggest ways to improve crew efficiency and morale,” the young Zabrak engineer completed Jayne’s oft-repeated refrain, cutting the droid off mid-sentence.  “Well, you’ve suggested, and I still say I know better.”

“But Mazzzter—”

“No ‘but’s, Jayne!  You just said it yourself, I’m the Mazzzzzter, not you,” she said, imitating the self-important protocol droid’s buzzing lisp.

A moment passed in silence.  “There izzz no need to pull rank,” Jayne said finally, managing to convey an emotionally wounded air, despite a relatively limited range of vocal tones.  “Nor do I appreciate being mocked,” the droid said, careful to choose words that contained no sibilant sounds.  With bug-shaped head held high, the J9 unit turned and walked to the other side of the Duty’s workshop to pout.

QT-QD asked a question in Binary, the load lifter’s tentative squeaks and high-pitched whistling tones strangely incongruous coming from such a large, physically intimidating being – even a mechanical one.

“Yes, Cutie,” the yellow-skinned Zabrak sighed.  “I do think I hurt his feelings.”

Cutie beeped, and then let out another, higher bleep.

“Yes, again,” she confirmed.

The massive worker droid lowered its single photoreceptor to stare directly at Bukk.

What are you thinking in there? Bukk wondered, staring into the gentle giant’s “eye.”

Cutie tootled the same, four-note musical phrase he’d been repeating at regular intervals for the last hour: a beep, a lower beep, and then two more tones, ascending.

Well, you ask an obvious question, you get an obvious answer, the Zabrak thought with a smile.  He’s a labor droid, not a philosopher.  “Yes, Cutie,” Bukk said aloud in response to the simple-minded droid’s endlessly repeated question.  “I’m sure I can help you.”  She pulled her welding helmet down over her tattooed face and sparked the fusioncutter.  “Now hold still and I promise your leg’ll be good as new in another minute.”

As she spot-welded the new durasteel plate over the patch of rewiring, Bukk caught herself humming a half-remembered lullaby to the hulking labor droid, and suddenly she was reminded of her father, singing softly to her on the porch of their ranch house on Feldrona.  A familiar wave of homesick loneliness washed over her.  I still miss them, she realized.  No matter how many years go by, I’m never going to stop missing my family.  And I’m never going see them again.  Hidden under her welding mask, unnoticed by her mechanical companions, Triz began to cry.  Absorbed in her memories, her emotions, and the repair, the young Zabrak didn’t even hear the door to the workshop swish open behind her.

“Ms. Bukk?” someone said behind her, his raised voice cutting through the sizzling noises of the fusioncutter.  Triz flinched at the unexpected interruption, finished the last line of the weld, and shut the cutter down.  Slowly, she turned to face the speaker, leaving the welding mask on to cover her tear-streaked face.

Oh, perfect, she said, when she turned around and found herself looking into the captain’s grey-green eyes. Just what I need right now: another “discipline” lecture.  She was careful to keep her tone neutral when she spoke: “Yes, captain?” she asked, her voice muffled by the mask.

“I was just—” the human began, and trailed off with a frown.  He swept his gaze over her.  “Are you alright?”

Triz reflexively checked that her face was still covered.  Can he tell I’ve been crying?  But the mask was still in place.  “I’m fine,” she said, a little too quickly, adding, “sir.  I’m just fixing Cutie’s leg.”

Trykon glanced over her shoulder briefly at the labor droid, then resumed his penetrating stare.  “So I see,” he said.  “How’s it coming?”

“Just finished, actually.”  There was an awkward silence.

The captain was very quiet when he asked, “Then why not take off the helmet?”

He knows.  With a sigh, Triz pulled off the welding mask, swiping angrily at the tears on her cheeks.  “Because then… you’d see me… crying,” she said in halting gasps, new tears pouring out to replace the ones she’d just wiped away.

“Oh… I—I see,” the human said clumsily, shuffling his feet as if he couldn’t decide whether or not to flee.  “Um.  Okay.  You’re upset?”

Triz shook her head in response, but even as she denied her feelings, she shuddered twice, sobbing silently.

“Well, you seem… upset,” the human said.  There was another long silence.  “We need to find a way to work together, Ms. Bukk.  If I’ve been too stern with you on this voyage, maybe—”

“No, it’s not that,” Triz whispered.

“Ah.  Well, that’s… Well.  What’s wrong then?” the captain asked.

She paused, uncertain.  Do you really want to tell him the whole, ugly story?  Can you even find the words to tell it?  “I—it’s just—I miss my family,” she stammered.  “A few years ago, I—”

“Captain Trykon, you’re needed on the bridge,” a voice interrupted over the interior comm system.

Really bad timing,” the human said with a grimace, and he jogged over to the comm panel on the near wall, stretching out a hand toward the young Zabrak to indicate he’d be right back.  “Bridge, Tyrkon.  What’s the situation?” 

“There’s a Suwantek-built light freighter, sir, inbound for Abrae.  Profile matches a suspected smuggler’s ship that blasted its way out of a customs inspection a couple months back in the Lipsec System.”

“Alright, understood.  I’ll be right there.”  He turned to Triz.

“Duty calls,” she said simply, unsure if she was relieved or disappointed that her past would remain her own secret.  Again.

“Yes it does.  Uh, are you going to be alright, Ms. Bukk?”

“Sure.  Yes,” she added for emphasis.

“Okay,” the human said, frowning.  “Why don’t you take a little time off, go up to C Deck and talk with somebody?”

“Yes sir,” Triz heard herself say.  “You worry about smugglers and pirates and rebels; I’ll be fine, captain.”  She forced a smile.

The human nodded once, and then he turned and hurried out the door, walking across the hold and to the portside lift, bound for the command deck.  In his wake, Triz felt very alone.  She considered the captain’s suggestion briefly, about mingling with the other beings congregated on C Deck, but never even started towards the lift.  Beings always hurt you, in the end, she reminded herself.  Stick to droids.  She looked up at Cutie, still staring at her impassively.

The big labor droid repeated his four-beep inquiry yet again, and the emotionally raw Zabrak engineer burst out laughing.  “I already have helped you, bolt-bucket.  You’re all fixed.  Now get back to work,” she said, shooing the load lifter away.  Cutie took a tentative step as the organic being looked on, and, apparently satisfied with the repair job, lumbered out into the main cargo hold.  Triz took a deep breath, and let it out.  “Jayne?” she called across the workshop to the bug-eyed protocol droid.  “I’m sorry about earlier…”

***

On the short ride up to A Deck, Wyl Trykon was preoccupied by worries about the emotional well-being of his young Chief Engineer, and by self-recriminations.  You didn’t even offer her a handkerchief, he thought, his arms crossed tightly across his chest.  There’s military propriety to think about, fine.  But there’s also basic decency.  The lift came to a stop, and as he stepped off onto the Duty’s bridge, Trykon noticed a palpable tension between the four officers on watch, and the needs of the moment cut through his feelings and distracted thoughts like a vibroknife.  “Report,” he barked.

Master Chief Artur Phylas, Trykon’s human executive officer, spun around in his chair in front of the communications station.  “A TL-1800 freighter just hypered in, calling itself the Diligence, only Morrigan here says she looks a lot like the Lover’s Delight, a Suwantek with a criminal history.”

“Elaborate.”

“We’re still cross-referencing the name Diligence – it’s a popular ship name for Imperial traders – but the Lover’s Delight is registered to Miklos Baar, a known smuggler, and suspected associate of Tal Diarbach.”

Wyl felt his stomach turn.  “Tal Diarbach, the crime boss?”

“The very same,” Phylas said grimly.

Diarbach was one of the most dangerous criminals in Vast Empire space, the mastermind behind a series of local hijackings and pirate raids stretching back to just after the Battle of Endor, with a network of contacts that resembled a terrorist organization more than a common gang.  And this freighter’s pilot might be one of those contacts, Trykon thought.

“Very well,” he said aloud.  “Where’s the freighter now?”

“Off the bow, just to starboard, maybe four klicks distant.  We’ve ordered them to stop for a customs inspection and they’re in compliance with those orders.”

“For now,” Petty Officer Morrigan said darkly.

Phylas shrugged.  “For now,” he agreed.

Trykon stepped up to the comm station.  “Give me a ship-wide channel?”  Phylas flipped a switch.  “Attention, crew of the Duty: we have stopped a light freighter on suspicion of smuggling.  I’m ordering a boarding action.”  He nodded, and Phylas cut the transmission.  “Sound General Quarters,” the captain ordered.

An alarm roared to life, and Trykon knew his crewers were scrambling to their stations on all four decks of the Duty.  In the standard week since their extended patrol began, they’d all performed well, Trykon knew, but then again the greatest challenge they’d yet faced was routine intra-system traffic control, and while expediting shipping might sometimes be described as complicated, nobody would ever call the work dangerous.  He hoped they hadn’t become too complacent in the lull; boarding a suspicious freighter without due caution was as good a way as any Wyl could think of to get killed in space.

“Okay.  Keep running through the registry records, Mr. Morrigan.  When the Primary Watch crew gets up here, I’ll want them at their stations, but I want you to stay on as well.  Work with Notra and find out who that is,” Trykon said, jabbing a finger at the viewport and the light freighter beyond, now visible to the naked eye as the Duty closed the distance between the two starships.  “Leading Crewman Roth, you’ll stay up here as well; I’m going to want Zark on the boarding party, and that leaves you as senior Weapons Coordinator.  Phylas?”

“Sir?”

“You’ll handle the inspection.  Who else besides Zark do you want with you?” Trykon asked.

The executive officer considered a moment.  “I’ll take the off-duty communications mates and one of Bukk’s people.  Five armed Imperials should be plenty to intimidate two civilian pilots, even if they are friends of Diarbach’s.”

“They could be running with a much larger crew,” Morrigan said quietly.

Phylas snorted.  “Well, if I take many more on this little expedition there won’t be anybody left aboard the Duty, mister.  So, unless you want that damn Verpine protocol droid driving the ship, five’ll have to be enough,” he finished, just as the lift door opened, and the officers of the Primary Watch arrived.

“Five will be plenty, I’m sure,” Trykon said, sympathizing with Phylas’s frustration.  We really should carry a small detachment of marines, even on standard patrols, he thought, not for the first time.  “Let’s get it done.”  It only took a few moments for the Secondary Watch crewers to transfer control of the Warden-class Light Cruiser to their superiors, and for the relief team to be briefed.  The others left – two on their way to the small arms locker and starboard airlock, the rest bound for back-up duty stations throughout the ship.

“Alright, Drackon.  Pull us up along her port side...  That’s it.”  He clicked his comlink: “Inspection team, we’ve got a confirmed seal.  You’re clear to board.  Good luck.”

“Boarders away,” Phylas said.  “We’ll make a quick sweep and then I’ll have an initial report.”

There was quiet on the bridge.

“I have a bad feeling about this,” Morrigan murmured after long minutes, the registry listings still scrolling by on his display.  Me too, Trykon thought.  But it doesn’t do anybody any good to say so.

“Steady, Mr. Morrigan.  It’s just a routine customs inspection.  Nothing to wor–”

“Sir!”  Panic edged Kath Notra’s voice as the Twi’lek Sensors tech interrupted his captain.  “There’s another starship approaching our position!”

“What?!”

“I’m sorry, sir.  It just… snuck up on me.  I was focusing on the other ship, and…”  The Twi-lek rubbed his forehead, the tips of his brain tails twitching.

“I need a proper report, Mr. Notra!”

The Sensors tech forced a breath, and his lekku relaxed.  “Medium transport.  Reads as a Wayfarer-class.”  Trykon felt the hairs on his neck stand on end: he knew the Wayfarer-class from his days as the Kanu head-of-family on Kuat.  Soon after taking over the family’s business interests he’d invested heavily in Kuat Systems Engineering, only to have the company’s new design for a modular transport – the Wayfarer – fail spectacularly on the Galactic market.  Eventually (a few years after Trykon had lost a small personal fortune), the few production examples of the class actually became quite popular… with smugglers and pirates, who were known to use the transport as a pocket starfighter-carrier.  Vaguely, Trykon was aware that Notra was still speaking: “No heavy weapons, and she’s not under power, sir, so the computer didn’t tag her with a high threat rating.  But she’s been steadily drifting toward us since… looks like since we made initial comm contact with the Diligence.”

“Yeah, well, I hate to alarm anyone even more,” Morrigan chimed in, “but that’s not the Diligence we’re hooked up to; records cross-reference and sensor analysis is complete, and the computer’s best guess is that the scow out there is, in fact, the Lover’s Delight.”

“I stand corrected, Mr. Morrigan: this is not a routine customs stop,” Trykon said with a scowl.  He thumbed his comlink.  “Duty to inspection team: the freighter’s dirty, and might have a friend on the way.  Detain the crew and get back to the ship immediately.”

There was no response from Phylas's team.

“Inspection team, report.”

Another silence.  This is not good, Trykon mused.  His thoughts raced: there were no legitimate, benign reasons for another starship to approach an Imperial vessel performing a customs stop, especially a starship of a class known to be beloved by the criminal underworld.  And if the incoming ship did turn out to be hostile, Trykon would have to break away from the Lover’s Delight to do battle with the Wayfarer-class.  But I can’t just leave five members of my crew on that freighter!

Morrigan shook his head.  “I told you–”

“Shut up, Morrigan,” Trykon snapped.  “Your bad feeling’s about to get a whole lot worse.  Go get a couple of sidearms, grab someone from C Deck, and get to the airlock, double quick; you see someone you don’t recognize trying to get aboard, blast ‘em.”  Morrigan blanched, but nodded.  “Get going!  Roth, I want firing solutions for all weapons on that incoming transport, and be prepared for starfighters.  And Roth?”

“Sir?”

“That freighter can not be allowed to escape.  Understood?”

The human weapons coordinator swallowed heavily.  “Yes sir,” he muttered, and he began to plot another, secondary series of firing solutions, mapping out the most efficient way to destroy the Lover’s Delight.

“We’ll give the boarding party one more minute,” the captain said softly.

“And then?” Eslara asked, turning around in her seat at Astrogation.

“And then, Ms. Brin…” Wyl Trykon sighed.  “Then, I’ll do what I have to do, to ensure the safety of this ship, and the security of the Vast Empire.  The Duty can’t fight off this Wayfarer and any starfighters it might be carrying if we’re still shackled to this freighter, so we have to go.  If Phylas and his team don’t make contact in the next…” he checked the sensor board, “sixty-seven seconds or so, I have to assume they’re either dead or overpowered.  Either way, we have to detach to get ready for the Wayfarer, and I’m not going to let the Lover’s Delight escape while we tangle with its escort.  Whether that freighter is crewed by murderers or ‘mere’ hostage-takers, today we are going to cut their villainous careers short.  We give our people one minute,” he repeated, and then forced himself to finish the thought: “and then we detach from the freighter Lover's Delight and blow it up.”

OOC:
2,804 words
"Don't look for the difficulty in every opportunity; find the opportunity in every difficulty." -- Wyl Trykon

Imperial Network Star Wars Image

BO/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/mSSD Atrus/TF:A/1FL/CSS/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)
BO/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/mSSD Atrus/TF:A/1FL/CSS/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)

TO/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/PLT Cappadocious/VENA/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)
TO
/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/PLT Cappadocious/VENA/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)
[This message has been edited by Trick (edited March 30, 2011 12:56:41 AM)]
[This message has been edited by Trick (edited March 31, 2011 5:54:42 AM)]
Trykon
ComNet Initiate
 
Trykon
 
[VE-NAVY] Chief Petty Officer
 
Post Number:  185
Total Posts:  3784
Joined:  Feb 2011
Status:  Offline
  RE: Trykon: SCFE
March 30, 2011 12:54:54 AM    View the profile of Trykon 
Ship Captain Fitness Exam, Mission Prompt A, Post 3: "Surprises and Solutions"

Captain Trykon’s voice came over the comlink in Master Chief Artur Phylas’s hand: “Inspection team, we’ve got a confirmed seal.  You’re clear to board.  Good luck.”

Phylas raised the comlink to his lips.  “Boarders away,” the human said.  “We’ll make a quick sweep and then I’ll have an initial report.”  He clicked the comlink off, and clipped it to his uniform.  “Okay.”  He looked over his hastily gathered “inspection team:” there were two young men from the communications section, an old engineer’s mate named Gasim, himself, and the imposing Trandoshan Weapons officer, Zark.  Some boarding party, he thought wryly.  Well, it’s just a routine inspection… the appearance of strength is all that’s really needed.  Still, the human executive officer was glad to have his Weapons officer along: the reptilian being was a formidable fighter, whether targeting a turbolaser battery or firing a sidearm.  “Zark has point,” Phylas said quietly, “and I’ll follow up.  You three,” he continued, making eye contact with the other humans, “just keep us in sight, and don’t shoot unless we do.”

The three human crewmen nodded, their eyes wide, and Zark hit the door panel.  The airlock double doors ground open, and the five-being squad crossed through to the freighter calling itself the Diligence.

The air on the small freighter was dry, and stale, and the hallway they entered was narrow, and very dimly lit.  It was also unsettlingly empty.

“No one to greet us, then?” Gasim murmured.

“Silence!” Zark hissed, his blaster carbine raised in a ready position, sweeping the gloom at the end of the hall.  The old human engineer’s mate glowered, but said nothing more.  Suddenly, hurried footsteps could be heard approaching from within the freighter, a single pair of heavy boots clanging on the metal deck in a measured jog.

“Coming,” a voice echoed from around the corner.  “I’m coming!  Sorry to keep you waiting!”  The footsteps grew louder.

Swiftly and silently, Phylas and Zark padded to the end of the airlock hallway, where it intersected with the central forward-aft corridor of the freighter.  At a nod from Phylas, they simultaneously peeked around the corner in opposite directions.  The Trandoshan peered right to scan the freighter’s stern, and the human looked left, down the length of the corridor towards the TL-1800’s forward sections – the direction from which the footsteps were coming.

“Alright, hold it right there,” Phylas ordered in a commanding voice, his blaster carbine at the ready.  “Hands on your head.”  The footsteps stopped, and Gasim and the others filed into the central corridor, their own carbines raised.

“Aft clear,” Zark whispered behind them.  Phylas nodded, and took a half-step toward the being who’d been running down the corridor to meet them: a broad-shouldered human male with his hands held aloft – and a blaster on his hip.

“Remove your sidearm, citizen,” Phylas said.  “Slowly.”

The side of the man’s mouth twitched, as if suppressing a grin, but his voice was conciliatory, and even a little plaintive: “Alright, now.  We’re all friends.  It just took me a second to shut down the engines, and I’d forgotten about this little thing, is all,” he said, gingerly laying his blaster pistol on the deck and sliding it towards the Imperials with a gentle kick.  “Don’t shoot, eh?”

“We’re here to inventory your cargo, not shoot,” Phylas said, but he did not lower his weapon, nor block the other Imperials’ lines of sight by stepping any closer to the muscular human.  “Where is the rest of the Diligence’s crew?”

Phylas could have sworn the muscled human twitched another smile before his expression settled on an apologetic frown.  “It’s just me and Jonesy.  I’m sure he don’t mean no disrespect or anything.  He’s probably just sleeping.  In that stateroom, there,” the man said, indicating with a half-nod a door to his left, between him and Phylas.

Right, Phylas thought.  I’m sure.  “Well, no disrespect to Jonesy, or to you, Mister–”

“Micklin.  Aldo Micklin,” the burly human answered quickly.

“No disrespect intended on our part either, Mr. Micklin,” Phylas continued, “but I think I’d like you to open that door, if you wouldn’t mind overmuch.”

This time, there was no mistaking the grin.  “If you like,” the man said.  He sauntered to the door, and knocked three times.  “Jonesy,” he yelled.  “These nice folks from the Vast Empire want to say hello.”  He keyed the door panel, and disappeared into the stateroom. 

And then, suddenly, the muzzle flashes of three different blasters lit up the far end of the darkened corridor, and red bolts screamed in at the boarding party.  Phylas’s curse was drowned by the sounds of the incoming fire, and by the gurgled death rattle of the crewman standing just behind his left shoulder.  “Cover!” he bellowed.

The Imperials dove into the starboard airlock hallway facing the one through which they’d boarded the freighter, all except Zark, who ducked back the way they’d come, to port.  “Three shooters,” he hissed.

Phylas nodded across the corridor and over the dead body to the Trandoshan.  He’d counted the flashes, too.  Three, plus “Micklin,” if the bastard’s got a blaster in that room.  He glanced behind him at old Gasim and the remaining kid, now unmistakably terrified.  Four in total, versus me and Zark.  Not good.  He unclipped his comlink.  “Phylas to Duty.  We’ve been attacked.  Man down.  Request instructions.”  There was no answer.

“Phylas to Duty.  Do you copy?”  Silence.  The human Chief Petty Officer cursed again.  This is really not good.  “They’ve got an active local jammer, Zark,” he called to the Trandoshan, who snarled in reply.  He turned to the other humans.  “Stay here, and shoot anybody who comes round that corner who isn’t me or Zark, okay?”

“Aye, sir,” Gasim said.  The other just stared blankly.

Phylas shook his head.  “Trick better give me a blasted medal for this,” he said under his breath.  “Zark!  Covering fire!”

The Trandoshan leaned out into the corridor and loosed a steady stream of bolts.  As he did so, Phylas somersaulted into a kneeling firing position, behind the relative cover provided by the corpse lying prone in the middle of the deck.  More bolts jostled the body, but none found their living target, and Phylas added the sound of his own carbine to Zark’s.  A third joined them, and Phylas turned back to see Gasim shooting, too.

The triangulated return fire was devastating.  Gasim’s shots weren’t terribly accurate, but they were distracting, which gave Phylas and Zark critical seconds.  Seconds were all that the Trandoshan needed: his shots were chillingly accurate, and he chose targets with a cold efficiency.  Almost as soon as it had started, the lightfight was over, with all three enemy shooters crumpled at the end of the corridor.

“Clear left,” Zark said in his husky voice.

“Clear right,” Gasim echoed.

“Alright,” Phylas said.  He regarded the old human engineer.  “Gasim, hold here.  Guard the airlock and make sure Micklin stays in that room while Zark and I sweep the rest of the ship.  If we don’t report in two minutes, pull back to the Duty and seal the door behind you.”

The old man nodded, and grabbed the arm of the communications mate cowering behind him.  “You heard him,” he muttered, dragging the frightened kid across the main corridor, past his dead friend, to the open airlock.  “We’ll hold, sir.”

“Right,” Phylas said.  “Zark, get up to the bridge and see if you can’t shut this jamming down.  Don’t bother checking the staterooms: just blast the door controls on your way.  That ought to prevent any more interruptions.”  The reptilian being nodded.  “I’m going to check out the cargo bay, and then I’ll join you on the bridge.”

Phylas turned to the freighter’s aft, and heard Zark’s blaster shots ring out behind him as the Trandoshan fused the door controls of all the rooms on the central corridor on his way to the bridge.  The human took a deep breath, and opened the door to the aft cargo hold.

The sight that greeted him confirmed all his worst fears: the bay wasn’t overlarge, but it was crowded with containers and cluttered shelves, with labyrinthine trails snaking through the detritus – a perfect place to stage an ambush.  Phylas weighed his options.  “Nine hells,” he muttered.  “I’d really rather not.”

He took a step backwards, resolving to return and search the maze of cargo containers later – accompanied by proper reinforcements.  But as he crossed back into the central corridor, something small clattered away behind him: he’d kicked something out of the intimidating room in his hasty retreat.  He closed the door to the cargo bay, and shot the door panel twice to temporarily seal it.  Then, he turned to see what it was he’d kicked.

The object was a small metallic tube with black sides: a multi-dose vial of spice, straight from Kessel.  Glitterstim, he thought, turning up his nose and holding the tube between thumb and forefinger, as if it stank more than the corpses of every being the vile substance had killed, directly and indirectly, since its psychoactive properties had been discovered in a time long past.  Looks like these are Diarbach’s buddies.  I’ve got to report to Trick.  He passed Gasim on his way to the bridge.  “Keep holding.  I’m gonna see if we can’t talk to the Duty from up at the bridge.”

Zark was unsurprisingly seated at the weapons station on the TL-1800 when Phylas stepped into the freighter’s small cockpit.  “Both laser cannons are charged and ready for combat, sir,” the reptilian being hiss-sighed.  “And it looks like they’ve mounted a remote-controlled quad battery under the nose.”

Phylas rolled his eyes.  “I’m more interested in the damn communications black-out, Zark.  What are we gonna do with a few laser cannons, anyway?”  He worked the comm controls: “Inspection team to Duty, do you read me?”

Captain Trykon’s voice answered almost immediately, the comm static unable to mask the man’s relief: “Phylas!  You’re alive!”

“Yes sir, I am.  But Crewman Rouge isn’t so lucky, and–”

“Chief, there’s a Wayfarer-class coming this way, and we think she’s hostile.  Secure that freighter and get back to the Duty, now!”

Phylas cursed.  “Check the sensor board!” he snapped, and Zark confirmed the incoming starship.  The human turned back to the comm station.  “Sir, I have a man down and at least one bad guy still alive on this ship, barricaded in a stateroom.  We can’t secure this vessel before that ship gets here.”

There was a pause.  “Alright, Phylas.  I would have preferred to capture the Lover’s Delight, but if that’s not possible I’ll settle for destroying her.  Get your team back to the Duty, double quick.”

Phylas thought of all the evidence this freighter held – the glitterstim in the cargo hold, the prisoner locked in a stateroom, and the illegal weapons modifications – and he had a sudden flash of insight.  “No sir.  I’ve got a better idea.”

“A better idea?  Are you mad?” Trykon asked shrilly.  Someone else in the background said something indistinct, and a beat went by before the captain spoke again: “Well, I hope it’s a good one, Artur.  The Wayfarer just brought its engines online.  We have to detach from the Lover’s Delight now.  Your team is on its own.”

“We’ll be alright, sir.  Just don’t shoot us.  In fact, ignore this ship as if we had secured it, and left it adrift, and we may just be able to help you out with that incoming ship.”

“I hope you know what you’re doing, Chief,” Captain Trykon said, and cut the transmission.

“Yeah,” Phylas whispered to himself, “me too.”  He caught the Trandoshan gunner’s eye.  “Okay, Zark, here’s what we’re gonna do…”

***

“They’ve started their engines, sir, and they’re coming about!” Kath Notra warned from his position in front of the Sensors station.

Wyl Trykon, captain of the Warden-class Light Cruiser Duty, sighed, shaking his head.  “Well, I hope it’s a good one, Artur,” he said across the comm channel to his Executive Officer, still aboard the smuggler’s freighter Lover’s Delight with an Imperial customs inspection team.  “The Wayfarer just brought its engines online.  We have to detach from the Lover’s Delight now.  Your team is on its own.”

“We’ll be alright, sir.  Just don’t shoot us.  In fact, ignore this ship as if we had secured it, and left it adrift, and we may just be able to help you out with that incoming ship,” Phylas said, the excitement in his voice apparent even through the static of a poor communications connection.

“I hope you know what you’re doing, Chief,” Trykon said, and cut the transmission.  “Seal the airlock and detach.  Helm, bring us around to face the Wayfarer.”

In a sudden flurry of activity, the Duty broke away from the dilapidated Suwantek TL-1800 freighter, and turned to face the incoming Wayfarer-class transport.  As Trykon had feared, two more signals appeared on the scanners: the ship had launched a pair of starfighters.  “Two snubfighters inbound now,” Kath Notra reported.  “Headhunters,” he clarified.

“Thank you, Mr. Notra,” Trykon said to his Twi’lek Sensors officer, running through the strengths and weaknesses of the old Z-95 Headhunter in his head: Fairly slow and vulnerable, by modern-day starfighter standards, with no hyperdrive, but two concussion missile launchers, each.  Those could prove to be problematic.  “Roth, priority target is the carrier: maybe we can convince them to bow out of this fight, leaving the Z-95s stranded unless they withdraw, too.”

“Sir!” Notra broke in again.  “Looks like the Wayfarer was doing some boarding too, sir!  They’ve detached to engage us, now, but they were hooked up to another, smaller starship while they drifted toward us: there’s a powered-down HWK-290 behind them!”

“This day just keeps getting stranger,” Trykon muttered, frowning.

“Headhunters in missile range sir – they’re firing!”

Four concussion missiles streaked out from the two snubfighters.  In a TIE, Trykon would have relied on his craft’s maneuverability and his own piloting skill to evade the deadly projectiles; on the Duty, that course of action was unavailable.  “Shunt power from propulsion to shields!  Roth, return fire at will, but save our missiles for the carrier.”

Trykon hadn’t even finished his sentence before the missiles hit.  The Duty’s forward shield, reinforced as it was, held up to the onslaught, but only just.  The snubfighters roared past, jinking to avoid the Imperial vessel’s sporadic return fire.  Trykon couldn’t help but wonder if Zark might have done a better job at the Weapons position.  Yeah, he thought, he might have taken out one of them in their first pass, sure, but he’s not here.  Roth is.  Focus on the here and now!

The pocket carrier, now under power, accelerated toward the Duty.  It was an aggressive, gutsy frontal assault: even against a base-model Warden-class ship, the Wayfarer would be outgunned, carrying only a quad laser battery and a supplemental laser cannon, but its criminal captain was apparently emboldened by his starfighter support. Little do you realize, Trykon thought, that the Vast Empire has made a few additions to the base-model Warden-class ships in service.

“Wait for the Wayfarer to come in range of all our weapons, then give them a full volley, missiles and main batteries together,” Trykon said softly.  The ship trembled as one of the Headhunters made another strafing run.  “And even out power distribution to deflectors,” he added.

“Enemy ship coming into range now,” Notra breathed.

“Hit them,” Trykon said.

The Duty lashed out with its two laser cannons, followed seconds later by a barrage of missiles.  The Wayfarer’s shields absorbed the blaster bolts without a problem, but the civilian-grade shields couldn’t handle concussion missiles.  With a snort of derision, Roth reported: “Their forward shields have failed, Captain.”

“They’re turning about,” Kath Notra added, “and the Headhunters are breaking off as well!”

Trykon stood up and looked at the Twi’leks displays at the main Sensors station.  He pointed a finger at the central screen.  “So they are.  Looks like they’re going to recover the fighters and hyper out.”  His finger moved to another blip.  “The HWK-290 looks okay, whatever they did to it, but,” he paused, “where’s the Lover’s Delight?”  The smuggler's ship wasn't behind the Duty, where it had been when the fight began.

“There, sir!” Kath Notra said, indicated a signal in front of the retreating Wayfarer, his brain-tails twitching in excitement.

“Artur Phylas, you clever son-of-a-mynock,” Trykon chuckled.  As he spoke, the Lover’s Delight – which Phylas had stealthily flown around to block the enemy’s escape while both the Wayfarer- and Warden-class ships had been distracted, focusing on each other – opened fire on the retreating transport.  The commandeered freighter didn’t have powerful weapons, but that didn’t much matter, since the Duty had managed to strip the Wayfarer-class of its deflectors.  The red blaster bolts slammed into the unshielded transport’s hull, just as the first snubfighter came in to land in the modified hangar.  Durasteel melted, gases vented, and the Headhunter pilot panicked, crashing his fighter into the transport in a bright (but brief) fireball.  On the bridge of the Duty, two sensor signals winked out.

“I’m going to have to give that man a medal for this,” Trykon said with a grin.  “Status?”

“Enemy transport and one Headhunter destroyed.  The other fighter is powering down, and transmitting a surrender signal, in the open,” Notra said jubilantly.  “We won, sir!”

Trykon gave the bridge crew a moment to congratulate each other, and release the accrued tension with laughter, before he spoke again: “Signal the Lover’s Delight to form up to be boarded, and tell Chief Phylas his idea was better than mine.”  Trykon let out a chortle.  “Much better.  Drackon, get us alongside the freighter, and I’ll organize another boarding party.  Mr. Notra, signal Abrae command and let them know our status and position.  Once the Delight is secure, we’ll see what’s up with that HWK-290 they were messing with.  Maybe we’ll see about getting another ship out here to help with salvage.”  Every face in the small cockpit bore a smile.  “Well done, everyone,” Captain Trykon said.  “Now, let’s get back to work.”

OOC:
3,025 words
"Don't look for the difficulty in every opportunity; find the opportunity in every difficulty." -- Wyl Trykon

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BO/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/mSSD Atrus/TF:A/1FL/CSS/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)
BO/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/mSSD Atrus/TF:A/1FL/CSS/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)

TO/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/PLT Cappadocious/VENA/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)
TO
/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/PLT Cappadocious/VENA/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)
[This message has been edited by Trick (edited March 30, 2011 12:57:09 AM)]
[This message has been edited by Trick (edited March 31, 2011 5:54:08 AM)]
Trykon
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Trykon
 
[VE-NAVY] Chief Petty Officer
 
Post Number:  190
Total Posts:  3784
Joined:  Feb 2011
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  RE: Trykon: SCFE
March 31, 2011 5:53:18 AM    View the profile of Trykon 
OOC:
A little context for the above: these three posts comprise my Ship Captain Fitness Exam, as a part of the Navy's brand new Ship Captain Training Program.  All the requirements for the Exam mission are complete with these three posts, so feel free to comment on the story right here in this thread below this post if you want.  I may continue the tale in a bit, with a sort of coda post, if I get around to it, but it stands as is for the purposes of review.  Enjoy! 

-Trick
"Don't look for the difficulty in every opportunity; find the opportunity in every difficulty." -- Wyl Trykon

Imperial Network Star Wars Image

BO/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/mSSD Atrus/TF:A/1FL/CSS/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)
BO/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/mSSD Atrus/TF:A/1FL/CSS/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)

TO/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/PLT Cappadocious/VENA/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)
TO
/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/PLT Cappadocious/VENA/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)
Slasher
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Slasher
 
[VE-NAVY] 2nd Lieutenant
 
Post Number:  675
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  RE: Trykon: SCFE
April 1, 2011 7:12:39 AM    View the profile of Slasher 
Chief Petty Officer Trykon passes the SCFE
XNT/2LT Rorran "Slasher" Gorma/PLT Cappadocious/VENA/VEN/VE
XO/2LT Rorran "Slasher" Gorma/S:137 "Raptor"/W:46 "Defiance"/PLT Cappadocious/VENA/VEN/VE
TFC:B|SCAP/2LT Rorran "Slasher" Gorma/IMF II Fearless/TF:B/2nd FLT/VEN/VE
[IC1][CBV.][MC:1][MC:2][SoL][GWC][SWC][BWC][NS-1][LSM][=*IM*=][=*SWC*=](=*A*=)(=*SA*=)(=^ME^=)
Trykon
ComNet Initiate
 
Trykon
 
[VE-NAVY] Chief Petty Officer
 
Post Number:  193
Total Posts:  3784
Joined:  Feb 2011
Status:  Offline
  RE: Trykon: SCFE
April 1, 2011 12:41:25 AM    View the profile of Trykon 
Huzzah!!!



...

Well, back to the spice mines of Wiki...
"Don't look for the difficulty in every opportunity; find the opportunity in every difficulty." -- Wyl Trykon

Imperial Network Star Wars Image

BO/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/mSSD Atrus/TF:A/1FL/CSS/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)
BO/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/mSSD Atrus/TF:A/1FL/CSS/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)

TO/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/PLT Cappadocious/VENA/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)
TO
/CPO Wyl "Trick" Trykon/PLT Cappadocious/VENA/VEN/VE/[SoA][SoV]/(=*AE*=)(=^TG^=)
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