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 A Smooth Sea Never Made A Skilled Pirate, Skirmish
SirParzival
 Posted: May 13 2018, 10:31 AM
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~Eden-VII~

The sunlight filtered through the jungle of Eden-VII, causing reptiles to come out and bathe themselves in the love of their star. The jungle seemed to wake up to the larger animals, calls echoing through the miles of lush greenery. The birds woke up, their beautiful calls creating a cacophony of sound around Lumen Mining Station MCXXXI. The mining station was not quiet by any means, just quieter than the animals that roamed the forest. There were hundreds of bots and moving parts that moved in-and-out of the mines, constantly creaking and cracking. Along with these bots that dived deep into the ground to retrieve minerals, there were hundreds of bots along the surface, collecting the resources brought up and bringing them to the refineries. The refineries were constantly activated, taking the raw materials and changing them into materials used to aid in shipbuilding processes. Then, from the refineries, larger bots would package and store the materials before bringing them to the landing pads where freighters would come to pick them up. There were only a few marines squadrons and some engineers that were stationed there to ensure the safety of the engineers and to make sure all mechanics and machinery were working properly. The early morning light faded as a shadow descended over the treeline, leaving some animals to believe that the night had come already. The shadow was quickly identified on a quantum communications device located in the main communications area of the base as the Omega Freighters 'Colive', 'Terat', and 'Vascal'. The three freighters descended onto the landing pads, their engines firing to slow the ship down. As the magnetic locks activated creating a slight humming all over the airfield, hundreds of construction bots began to pour out of the storage facilities, going and collecting the refined materials and bringing them aboard the ships.

Not too far away, the deployment of marines on the freighters sat underneath the Bonanga Trees resting their eyes while the ships loaded up. There was a detachment of fifteen marines on each ship with three Captains that were in charge of the individual detachments while the Squad Commander ruled over the three ships. The three Captains were given time to relax with their men while the Squad Commander, Charles Marcien, was sent to speak with the Commander in charge of the mining facility. Charles was wearing his 'Power' Variant of the standard marine armor which gave him an extra foot of height along with serious changes in how strong he was. While there were many other variants that were more suitable for the Commander, this variant was a personal favorite of Charles due to the nature of the mission.

His variant thudded with each step as he moved toward the command building, his visor sliding up as he gave a wave to a passing marine. The Command Building was a massive structure, stretching five stories into the air and taking up one whole side of the clearing. Inside of the Command structure were sleeping quarters, mess hall, command center, launching pads, and drone controller stations. There were only forty-five marines stationed here but the mine stretched miles and miles into the ground creating vast complexes below the clearing.

As Charles stepped inside, he was greeted by one smiling marine who held out his hand.

<Private Swanson> A pleasure to meet you, sir! The Commander just needs some confirmation and then you'll be on your way!

<Commander Charles> Of course, private.

The Commander was quite larger than the Private who seemed to be right out of base camp which would explain why he was stationed in the middle of nowhere. The lift at the end of the hall lifted up as they got close, a view of the forest appearing on the other side. The lift was quite fast and within a few seconds of entering, they had arrived on the top floor. With a small hiss, the door opened and they walked out onto the command deck. There were dozens of stations positioned around the room each pertaining to different parts of the base. On the opposite side of the lift was a wall of glass which gave them a nice view onto the base below. Standing in front of the glass was a tall man wearing his formal outfit. He turned to the Commander, his long face curling into a smile as he walked forward to greet them. The other marines that were on the deck quickly snapped to attention as Charles passed, their salutes only going down once the man spoke.

<Base Commander Franci> Ah, Commander Marien! It has been a while since your last visit.

<Commander Charles> An apology, old friend. I was stationed elsewhere during the revolts on Eden-II.

<Base Commander Franci> I heard about those. Wasn't it the Blue Moon Agency that was responsible?

<Commander Charles> Yes, it was a small rebellion cell that took the Lumen VII Algae Farms. They killed around fifteen people.

<Base Commander Franci> I assume you made short work of them?

<Commander Charles> There wasn't much left of them, to say the least.

The man laughed before putting a hand on Charle's back.

<Base Commander Franci> It has been a while.

Just as he said this, a small dinging was heard from a floating hologram. It showed the progress made on loading up the freighters which now glowed a bright yellow '100'. His smile faltered before opening his hand as a small device flew over. He handed it to Charles who looked down, signing his name.

<Base Commander Franci> When will you be back?

<Commander Charles> I'm scheduled to come back next week, but knowing Decker he'll probably schedule me elsewhere.

<Base Commander Franci> Darn. Well, come visit if you ever need anything, alright?

<Commander Charles> Of course! And next time we're in Vix I'll buy you a drink, eh?

<Base Commander Franci> Safe travels, Charles.

Charles gave the man a nod before walking back toward the lift. As he got on, he turned back and gave Franci a wave. The man waved back as the lift doors closed.

Charles walked toward the lounging marines. HIs voice raised as he woke the sleeping ones up. The freighters were loaded and waiting for their detachment to give the orders. The Marines were quick to hop to their feet, not wanting to see the repercussions they would get if they disobeyed. Within five minutes, they were all aboard, taking up their stations.

The freighters took off, the magnetic locks popping off as the heavy engines gave them the power to push past the gravity. As they began to pick up speed, Charles turned on his communication link, telling all of his men to stay alert.

===

Thousands of kilometers away, hidden behind three large asteroids, were six Blue Moon frigates. Their sensors were quickly picking up the mining convoy as it ascended out of the atmosphere.
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SirParzival
 Posted: May 17 2018, 09:19 AM
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<Transit ~ Eden-VII to Eden-III ~ Cargo>

The freighters were larger than most warships being capable of carrying millions of tons of cargo in one journey. This also made them quite vulnerable as the majority of the space was spent on making them as efficient as possible. In the days where the Blue Moon faction was most prominent and with the Lux Republic attempting to industrialize their whole system, it left a lot of smaller transport fleets vulnerable and easy-pickings. This was not unnoticed by the Fier family, but, rather pushed to the side as it wasn't too common. Along with being quite rare, there were other things that the Lux Republic was focusing on, including a cure for cancer, zero point energy reactors, and incredibly advanced artificial intelligence. This took prevalence over losing a few freighters every few weeks, which the Lux could produce on a daily basis if needed.

This led to many freighter convoys being woefully under-protected with only a few marines on-board. With such little defense, Blue Moon fleets would overtake the convoys and take the precious material. While there were a great many times when the freighters and marines would put up such a fight that they would have to destroy the freighters, there was a good chance the ships could be taken with no casualties for the pirates. This eventually, led to the Resource Protection Accord (http://convergencewars.jcink.net/index.php?act=ST&f=6&t=806) which would lead to the eventual downfall of the Blue Moon Faction.

~

The three freighters were activating they're heavier sublight drives as they began to enter the monotonous trip, returning to Eden-II. The freighters were fully loaded and were given right-of-way when they would enter the common stellar 'highways' in between the inner planets, but out here, there were no warships ready to defend them. This is what originally started the Blue Moon Faction beginning their pirating ways.

~

The six Blue Moon Frigates were beautifully streamlined ships, painted a dark blue with the faction's symbol extended over the front of the hull. They had long barrels outfitted along the side of their vessels, accented by heavy, weighted engines in the back. These barrels were scavenged off of destroyed Tursus vessels. These barrels could fire heavy shots of volatile materials, smashing into unprotected vessels and ripping them apart. But, these barrels would fire something more sinister than kinetic shells. The weapons attached to the hull of the frigates would fire EMP clamps, each capable of disabling the freighters for extended periods of time, allowing the frigates time to board the ships and take whatever they please.

The frigates were created for pirating missions and they were extremely effective, housing three large engines capable of boosting and surrounding the slow-moving freighters, while small boarding engines slam onto the ships, allowing the pirates to enter.

The ships that were hidden away behind the cluster of asteroids, activated as the freighters neared, the engines firing as they blasted out from their cover. The freighters sensors were extremely sensitive and the fusion reactors blasted outward at the Captain, his eyes widening as he slammed his hand on the warning system. The defensive turrets activated, the sensitive scanners firing at any particle that happened to float by. The warning sirens blasted over the intercom, each marine grabbing his/her rifle and running to their posts.

~

The frigates were quickly approaching, able to outrun the ships but not destroy them. On the bridge of the leading frigate, Captain Marx glared out at the approaching fusion trails, his eyes determined on the middle ship. The middle ship looked no different from the others but contained cargo much more rare than the others. Unbeknownst to any of the crew of the freighter, the middle ship contained mass amounts of Valcroxix, the main material used to speed up production due to its cold properties. Each gram was priced at 45,000 credits with the middle freighter holding over 45 metric tons of the rare substance.

There was nothing to do but wait for the marines onboard the freighters. They couldn't go outside and fight back against the ships moving at millions of kilometers an hour. So, they waited, the fifteen marines on each ship tightening their defensive positions around the airlocks and cargo hold. The marines would not be giving any of the ships up without a fight, but there was still a chance. If the defensive turrets could destroy the EMP clamps then the frigates would fail, even with their speed, they didn't have the destructive power to blast past the shields. This would mean that they couldn't land their own men, which would allow the freighters to escape into friendlier space. Their hope kept on growing as the intercom counted the number of EMP Clamps destroyed. Each frigate had the capability of launching six of these clamps and as the freighter artificial intelligence began to count, the marines readied themselves to the loud siren followed by 'MISS'. On two of the ships, this never came, with each clamp being destroyed before impact. However, on the final ship, two of the clamps slammed onto the ship, electric waves rippling along the inside of the hole. This did a few things, one of which would be the lack of oxygen and an atmosphere, and the second would be the safety switches for the cargo would fail.

Almost immediately, the cargo hold will fill with an intense heat given off from the degrading nuclear materials. The Valcroxix would go ice cold, contrasting against the intense heat. This drop wouldn't be felt by the marines, who clothed in their power armor, would have no problems with the lack of gravity or the no-oxygen environment. There were five Marines in the cargo hold, three at the West airlock, three at the East airlock, and four accompanying the bridge crew. The backup generators would begin to slowly gain energy, but, it was far too late for the ship. The other two freighters had orders to not turn around and save the dying ship, but make a call to the Lux Republic to send in a Sirius Class Light Cruiser to try and save the men aboard.

The ship was silent with the only noise being the gentle crackle and pinging off the degrading materials. The marines footsteps were silent as they moved around the ship, trying to prepare for the enemy boarding parties. The silence was shattered by a ripping sound in the main cargo hold. Three large prongs ripped through the metal cargo door, opening up to reveal a dark red door. The door was painted with a blue skeleton painted in the middle.

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SirParzival
 Posted: Yesterday at 11:25 am
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The skull ripped apart with a crash as a behemoth of a man slammed onto the cargo hold floor. He was covered head-to-toe in large armor, making him easily nine feet tall. Along with being two feet taller than the marines, both arms carried portable railguns along with smaller missile modules on the chest area. Behind this monster, dropped four smaller raiders dressed in dark black armor slightly less advanced than the marines. The five marines froze, the man in the lead ordering a retreat as the railgun fired, ripping through a cargo hold. It exploded in a shower of sparks as the forty ton ammunition poked a foot-long hole in the container. The burst and bright lights of the marine's lasers as they fired back, lit up the cargo hold as they moved to get to higher ground. The monster kept on trucking forward, the rounds dropping into his powerful guns as he fired them one after another.

The sound of a struggle echoed through the freighter, drawing the attention of the marines stationed elsewhere. They were debating whether or not they should leave when small bumps could be heard on the outside of the airlock. This was accompanied by a large bang on the outer hull, which was drowned out by the tumult in the main cargo area. They looked at each other before the airlock exploded inward, sucking out the gases of the ship.

<Private Iox> Sir! We lost Private Carver! The ship is losing its pressur~!

The private cut out in a blast of laser fire followed by a scream.

<Commander Charles> Masks on!

The marines in the cargo hold were having a hard time fending off the behemoth which had been chasing them around. The four renegades in the black armor had left and gone after the Captain, leaving just the one man to defend against five marines.
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