Hi All, Dragon-Raptor here, with my first piece for FF.net! Just a short story of an idea I had in realation to a game mod I involved with.
Disclaimer: I do not own Battlestar Galactica, nor am I making any money out of this. However, the Cylon gunship and the central ship are my ideas.
Deep in the heart of space, a Colonial military freighter followed its course, heading out towards the main Scorpia controlled Colonial base. Due to the increased presence of Cylon raiding groups, many freighters had been lost in convoys, as the Cylon groups would dart in amongst the slow moving freighters, unleash a deadly volley of fire, then withdraw, before the Colonial escort could respond. As such, freighters begun to travel alone, in the hope of not drawing attention, since a convoy produced a lot of noise, while a lone freighter was very quiet.
Sadly, one such raiding group had detected this freighter.
On board the Cylon gunship, the main vessel in the group, the Centurion operating the sensors turned to face his golden superior.
"By your command"
"Scanners have detected a lone Colonial freighter, bearing 870 mark 120, distance 25 microns"
"Alert our raiders and intercept, standard attack pattern"
"By your command"
The seventeen Cylon raiders, large, heavily armed fighters, swung round and headed off into space. The gunship, a much larger version of the raider design, followed. The Gunship had been designed as a long-range patrol ship, but it made formidable long range attack craft as well. It had the same basic design as the standard Cylon raider, only 5 times bigger. The main guns had been upgraded to megalasers like those found on base ships, while it had four turrets mounted on it's hull, each carrying two standard raider cannons. Overall, it was a capable craft of war, and while it wasn't a match for the Colonial frigate, its main strength was its ability to engage the Colonial vipers from any angle, dominating any fighter skirmish.
On board the Colonial freighter, the sensor operator noticed contacts emerging on the edge of his screen. After a few moments, the contacts resolved into the Cylon raiding party. He turned to the Ships XO.
"Sir, I'm picking up a Cylon raiding group closing on our position."
The XO quickly snapped out her orders.
"Sound the alert, ensign! All personal to defence stations!"
Quickly striding to her own station, she pressed the button for the direct line to the captain's quarters.
"Sir, we have a Cylon raiding party heading right for us."
"I'll be right up." She could almost hear the grin in his voice.
As the final reports of combat readiness came in, Captain Heracles stepped into the bridge.
"What's the count?" he asked, as he stooped slightly to reach his chair. Heracles was used to a Colonial destroyer, and the freighters low ceilings and cramped cabins, including the bridge, still felt too small to him.
"Sir scanners show seventeen raiders and one gunship closing from our starboard side. Distance 20 microns. They are approaching in the standard Cylon configuration."
The captain had a feral grin on his face. "Good. Have the standard armament open fire at maximum range. Just like any other freighter."
The Cylon raiders flew ahead of the gunship, and now had the freighter in visual range. The six defensive light turbolasers mounted along the dorsal and ventral surfaces of the freighter opened up, sending linked bolts of coherent energy at them. At that range, they were not very accurate, but by the time they would be, the raiders would have them within their own cannon range.
On the bridge of the freighter, Captain Heracles watched the approaching raiders intently, a sly grin on his face.
"Enemy closing, Fifteen microns."
One of the raiders was caught by a twin-linked blast, and was instantly blown into a thousand fragments. The others pressed on, ignoring the loss.
The Gunship was now close enough to see clearly. It filled the sky behind the raiders.
Another raider was hit, a glancing blow that sheared off a wing where one of the cannons emerged. That fighter spun rapidly out of control, before exploding in a fireball.
"Positive shield now." The lieutenant called out, and all along the length of the ship, armour plating that was recessed into the hull extended, covering the view ports that doted the freighter.
Heracles watched the scanner, judging the right moment. "Wait.... Wait..." seven microns, six... "Wait...." Five microns. "Now!"
To the lead raider, it looked like the freighter was already going down. Panels all along its length blew out with small explosions, disintegrating, as they were ripped cleanly off, leaving straight edged holes. As the gases cleared, the Centurions inside the raider could see into the now exposed cargo bays but not though them...
...Then turbolaser bolts stabbed out of the newly created holes.
Several of the raiders were destroyed before they even knew what was happening. Eight were destroyed before the remainder began evasive action. But the new warship grade light turbolaser batteries that had been hidden behind the fake hull plating had been designed to shoot down small, agile craft. They lacked the punch of larger guns, but they made up for it with tracking speed and rate of fire. The raiders were quickly destroyed. Three craft managed to evade enough to reach the far side of the freighter, but more guns on that side too destroyed them.
"Bring us about! Prime the main cannon to fire! Target the gunship!" Heracles ordered.
On the gunship, the Cylons watched as the freighter swung about much faster than any other freighter that the Cylons had ever seen. The weapon ports along its length, the speed of the manoeuvre, meant only one thing...
"This is no freighter. The Humans have developed disguised warships. Fall back to rendezvous point. We must inform the Imperious Leader."
However before the gunship pilot could respond, the disguised light pulsar laser cannon in the bow of the Colonial freighter fired. The energy beam stabbed out and slammed into the gunship, cutting away at its hull just to the left of the main hull. The beam carved right though, sending the left wing section floating away from the gunship, completely powerless. The beam brushed against the port engine, causing some of the Tylium fuel stored there to ignite. The blast, while directed outwards by the design of the storage tank, sent the gunship tumbling, out of control. The Colonial ships guns opened fire again, blasting into the gunship again and again. Quickly its armour crumpled and the gunship was torn apart as its remaining fuel supplies went critical. As the gunship blew, cheers went round the Colonial vessel.
Captain Heracles was grinning ear to ear. "Stand down from combat stations." He activated the ships intercom. "Engineering, how soon before the disguise is reset?"
"About sixteen centaurs sir. We're locking the turrets down now."
"Good" As he sat back in his chair, Heracles turned to his communications officer.
"Ensign, take a message. 'To Scorpia Fleet HQ, Colonial Fleet. The Deception works. Have defeated a raider group, eighteen kills, and no casualties. Am continuing on course.' Attach our revised ETA, and log our kills." He turned to face the view ports. "Helm, resume course."
The Colonial vessel swung back on course, once again manoeuvring sluggishly and ponderously. Along it's length, sections of hull had shifted slightly and were slowly moving over the blown out panels in the hull. Each strip of metal left in its wake a sheet of whitish fluid that rapidly hardened and dulled to match the metal hull of the ship. The plastic used was one discover yaherns ago, made from native plants on Scorpia. It was very cheap and simple to produce, with almost unlimited resources, but it was also of such poor quality that no one had found a use for it. That is until now. When spread as a thin sheet across the port cut into the ships hull, the dyed plastic formed a perfect illusion of metal in the vacuum of space. By keeping vacuum on both sides, the fragile plastic plate maintained its strength. When needed, a small amount of hydrogen and oxygen was vented into the space behind the fake hull plate. Add a spark, and the plastic was shattered outwards without any harm coming to the ship, freeing the hidden guns to do their job - destroying Cylons.
The prototype Colonial 'Deception' type 'Q' ship powered on course, leaving behind a few fragments of Cylon raiders, and the burnt out wreck of a Cylon gunship in its ion wash.
Well, there we are! If I get good responce, I may make more of these short stories. Praise and flames are welcome!