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-   -   Jethanis Incident (http://forum.shrapnelgames.com/showthread.php?t=36898)

Siirenias November 19th, 2007 11:00 PM

Jethanis Incident
The United Systems Hegemony's tenuous relations with the Sithrak Dominion and the Xi'Chung Hive has been a source of headaches and gray hairs for the Prime Director for years. In recent times, heated hostilities have gotten the attention of the USH Navy, even from across the expansive stellar cluster.

After a time, the strain on the Sithrak Navy was too much to bare. The Xi'Chung broke into a Sithrak fringe system...and burned its worlds. In a strange moment of humility, they called upon the proud people of the USH for military support...and fleets were sent.

Existing on the opposite end of the stellar cluster, separated by millions of real-space light years, it was misunderstood by Naval Intelligence exactly how vast the Dominion's Navy was...and how equally immense the Hive had to be to breach such an aggressive race's military.

By comparison, the USHN was nothing to be laughed at. Its impressive fleets were in the middle of mopping up the Norak Continuum's xenocidal fanatics and their absurdly low-tech armada. Although experienced and with a long tradition of strength and success, the USHN had yet to truly face a foe approaching its tonnage, in no small part due to its dreadnought flagships...

Siirenias November 19th, 2007 11:23 PM

Re: Jethanis Incident
Stardate 2436.3

As Charlie Foxtrots go, this was textbook.

United Systems Hegemony Fleet VI began translating into the Jethanis system, a known Xi'Chung Hive system, as a show of force...

...Only to translate right into a fleet of 17 battleships. Worse, they were stationed right near the warp point.

In a conventional battle in open space, the USHN's philosophy of assembling its fleets into divisions of core vessels with light escorts was a brilliant and devastating deviation from the popular Big Ship philosophy treasured by the other significant nations in the quadrant. Not only that, but it allowed USHN fleets to be more potent mobile forces while reducing tonnage by using light cruiser and destroyer escorts in place of consort ships in a massive, single formation. However, Warp Point Assaults were something special...and USHF 6's reality.

The USHNS Dreadnought translated first, to be greeted with immediate engagement. Before she could pull out, more of the fleet had translated in. The Fleet was committed. There was no turning back.

The vicious knife fight was brutal. Beams and missiles zipped back and forth, ships shattered, people died.

The Fleet managed to eliminate the hostile force...but paid a high price for it victory. All three of her dreadnoughts were lost. Another two cruisers and a frigate joined them in magnificent, if smaller, fireballs.

Despite these losses, by some miracle, both the division of combat and political transports, as well as the division of support cruisers, escaped relatively unscathed. However, all that was left to protect them were a pair of cruisers with their frigate escorts, along with two spent and crippled boarding frigates.

Siirenias November 19th, 2007 11:42 PM

Re: Jethanis Incident
Stardate 2436.4

In the intervening time, USHF VI's single repair cruiser managed to repair one of its boarding frigates into some semblance of function, even if said function was effectively useless without capture cruisers or battleships to support. As precious, non-replenishable missiles were re-allocated to the cruiser divisions, the lone frigate was tasked to ride shepherd on the support craft.

The pair of light cruiser colliers managed to deliver fresh units of fuel and reactive mass before the second battle began. A fleet of 25 -25!- battleships pursued with bloody intent. The poor remaining crippled boarding frigate was written off and abandoned as two cruisers, escorted by frigates, accelerated in futile defense of their charges.

In a surprise twist, USHN's revolutionary doctrine of space engagement allowed the cruisers to even the odds a little more.

14 Xi'Chung battleships, a light cruiser, and a destroyer never made it out in one piece, and forced the rest to scatter in disarray. Although the numbers were impressive, the relatively low exchange rate was still crushing, as the cruiser Eagle and frigate Wicker shattered under withering fire. In addition, all of USHF VI's missiles had been spent, leeching away the Fleet's last advantage...

Siirenias November 19th, 2007 11:48 PM

Re: Jethanis Incident
Stardate 2436.5

A miracle.

Knocked back onto their heels by the pair of staggering losses, the Xi'Chung Hive found themselves reeling. No third wave had come. Yet.

However, a Duruksha flotilla of resupply shuttles managed to make their way to the crippled fleet, rearming all USHF VI's remaining missile batteries and filling her magazines.

However, with replacement vessels coming from so far, the wait was agonizing as orders from Admiralty ordered the fleet to stay put and continue to show the Xi'Chung Hive the USH's displeasure with their presence.

Siirenias November 20th, 2007 01:43 AM

Re: Jethanis Incident
Stardate 2436.6

The Xi'Chung strike again, hoping to make up for the lost time they spent reeling from their losses, using the ships that escaped the last conflict.

The cruiser USHNS Falcon took 4 or 5 battleships with her, and the frigate USHNS Shield dissolved in a cloud of expanding gas. Though crippled, the boarding frigate USHNS Slug staggered free of the engagement, while the remaining two frigates took care of the last battleships. The Slug is becoming a regular in the repair cruiser's repair bay.

Reinforcements are steaming at full speed toward USHF VI, but disturbing reports from the Sithrak Dominion place a force of 87 Xi'Chung vessels in the neighboring system...

Siirenias November 20th, 2007 02:23 AM

Re: Jethanis Incident
Stardate 2436.8

No more incursions on Fleet VI by the Xi'Chung have been attempted as of yet. The first reinforcement, the capture cruiser USHNS Bolt, is one system away. The massive group of Hive ships have been confirmed -- a massive destroyer flotilla surrounding a core of battleships. Their intentions are unknown, and if Sithrak contacts are reliable, they have remained in the same sector for an extended period. Morale, nevertheless, improves with the first reinforcement a warp point away.

Siirenias November 20th, 2007 03:44 AM

Re: Jethanis Incident
Stardate 2437.0

The 6th fleet of the United Systems Hegemony Navy is now nearing the completion of its rebuilding. Several of its heaviest elements are just a warp point away.

In fact, with the rendezvous of an additional capture cruiser, a retaliation action was taken. The capture cruisers USHNS Bolt and USHNS Rifle sought out and captured a crippled battleship recorded as being part of the second Battle of Jethanis. Although the battleship's consort escaped, due to insufficient breaching shuttles, the capture was a success. The fleet's repair cruiser moved up to rendezvous with the Rifle, Bolt and the captured battleship.

As the repair cruiser docked with the battleship, a long range scanner reading chilled the crew's blood. Nearby, another Xi'Chung warship was cruising by. Said ship was well within the mass ranges for a dreadnought class vessel. The prospect of dreadnoughts in as vast numbers as the fleet's encountered battleships may keep some sailors from sleeping easy that night.

BlueTemplar November 21st, 2007 03:04 PM

Re: Jethanis Incident
Interesting story, but you start to repeat yourself a little bit...

Siirenias November 25th, 2007 10:20 PM

Re: Jethanis Incident
Stardate 2439.0

After two full years of activity in the region, as well as establishing a series of forward bases in a neighboring system, United Systems Hegemony Fleet 1 has been ordered back into the Jethanis system, from the other side.

So far, sensors have confirmed that an ally has retained its toehold in the system, and USHF 1 has been ordered to assume a planetary orbit while the situation is being assessed.

During the last two years, USHF 6 has been joined by 3 more fleets in the area, has conquered one moon, and established two new, large planetary bases in the area. The USHF 2, 4 and 6 are stationed in a neighboring system, as relief vessels, expatriate transport ships, and fresh, modern capture ships come in from the home systems.

(I know I repeat myself more than just a bit. I like it anyway.)

Siirenias November 26th, 2007 04:42 AM

Re: Jethanis Incident
Stardate 2439.3

USHF 1 seemingly took one of the Xi'Chung major fleet bases a little more rapidly than the local enemy forces could handle.
Shortly after the planet was conquered, a fuel depleted fleet of immense proportions came by to reprovision.

They were able to capture some 4 destroyers and take a part of a battleship in the short engagement. Now that the enemy fleet is known to be depleted, a pair of capture squadrons have been called in from a neighboring system to attempt an intercept.

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