Written for the Speakeasy. A story about how the mighty fall begins after the image.
Genre: Science Fiction/Space Opera
The Destruction of RSS Intrepid
“Don’t blame the sinner. It is the hubris of the mighty that eventually defeats them. Not me.”
–The Dread Captain Hollis
Becca Collins shrieked into the coms as nuclear fire erupted off the starboard side. “This is SS Chrysocolla. We are under attack! Requesting assistance.”
“There!” shouted Sensor Tech, Foster. “It’s the RSS Intrepid.”
“Make for the Intrepid,” said 1st Mate Peats. “Get us there fast, Wolpert, or the Captain will be pissed.”
“Engines answering full ahead,” replied Wolpert. Force beams, gravitic “paddles” reached out to grab at gravity waves that existed everywhere in space. The energy paddles moved the ship forward at 323 gravities. Gravitic sumps in the deck plates worked hard to keep up and maintain a human-normal 1 gravity for the crew.
Becca’s screams for help were finally answered by Intrepid. “This is RSS Intrepid. Chrysocolla, come to bearing 0-1-2, plane 2-4-8. We will engage your pursuer.”
Wolpert answered the directions and took position behind the Republic of Stars battleship. The escorts, a cruiser and two destroyers accelerated away towards the vessel which emerged from the gate behind Chrysocolla. The attacker reversed course upon scanning the escort ships, and re-entered the hyperspace gate. The escorts pursued in earnest, leaving the battleship behind.
Peats entered the airlock of RSS Intrepid and gratefully shook the hand of her captain, Wilberforce Huxley. “Welcome aboard, Mr. Peats,” said Huxley. “I’m anxious to understand why a full battlegroup should halt for a mere merchant ship.”
Peats simply gestured behind as a woman of inestimable beauty entered the ship. Curls and braids flowed to her waist. Her multi-hued eyes glittered with a light of their own amidst perfect golden skin. She walked like a queen straight to Huxley and took his head in her hands, kissing his cheek with soft lips. “My savior,” she whispered in a husky voice.
“Miss Diamonique,” said Peats. “Daughter of Hampton Zuniga.”
Huxley visibly forced his eyes way from Diamonique. “The industrialist Zuniga? Who constructs Republic military vessels?”
“The same. We need your protection, Captain.”
Overwhelmed by the stunning woman, he returned Diamonique’s magnetic gaze. “Certainly…and I would like to meet your skipper.”
“Captain’s away on business. This was supposed to be a milk run. ”
“Through, Epivian space? It’s loaded with pirates! Our battlegroup is hunting dread Captain Hollis, after all, and his squadron of Q-ships.”
“The armed merchants?” said Diamonique. “Peats always talks about Hollis like the devil himself.”
Huxley patted the hand she held on his shoulder. “He is no match for the Intrepid.”
“Captain, I would like to stay and see your ship. A real warship.” She shot a glare at Peats.
“Miss Zuniga, it’s not safe,” said Peats, grabbing her arm.
She snatched it away. “No!” She hid behind Huxley who stood in-between protectively. “I’m safe here, Peats,” she said.
In the days that followed, Huxley showed her about the most powerful vessel of the Republic of Stars. Soon, she took all her meals…and more, in the Captain’s cabin. “I don’t blame him,” said Diamonique, as Huxley ran his hand slowly down her naked back. “We were lovers. I broke it off when he started hitting me. He still thinks I am his.”
Huxley held her tightly. “You’re safe with me. You needn’t fear him.”
“But what about Captain Hollis? Can you stop him?”
“Of course! His armed merchants are no match for a human-space’s greatest battleship.”
“Gunnery, m’lady. A full salvo from Intrepid will obliterate his lightly armored vessels instantly.”
“Isn’t that unusually aggressive? What about recharge time for the guns?”
“A mere two minute wait. He’ll not survive, anyway. He’d never expect a full salvo. No one’s done it before.”
“I’ll be safe?”
“Very. I’ve placed Chrysocolla inside the protective fields of RSS Intrepid. Hollis’ weapons can’t penetrate our fields”
“You’re a vicious chess player,” she grinned.
“Speaking of that, I like the painting you brought aboard.”
She looked above the bed. “Oh. Yes, it reminds me that life is a game of chess. She reached between his legs, grinning slyly. “And now, I have your king. What to do?”
“Fire all guns!” said Huxley. The Q-ship couldn’t avoid so much concentrated fire, and it exploded.
“Got him!” growled Huxley.
“There!” said Peats, aboard the Chrysocolla, “Intrepid attacked the decoy. She can’t fire again for two minutes, Cap’n Hollis. Weapons are locked onto the targets you designated aboard Intrepid.”
“And we’re inside Intrepid’s impenetrable fields,” grinned Captain Diamonique Hollis, standing beside Peats. “Checkmate, Huxley.” Her angelic face hardened. “Fire!”
This week at the Speakeasy, the sentence prompt is: “Don’t blame the sinner.” The story should begin with this line and last no longer than 750 words. The following image must also be referenced in some manner. To join this awesome weekly challenge, look here: http://www.yeahwrite.me/speakeasy/149-open/