Battlestar Mercury Book 3: “Logistics” Chapter 33 “Pain & Loss”

Day 837 of the second Cylon war.

Commanders Log, Battlestar Solaria. Steven Evans recording.

“After ten days of very low activity, my task force has been assigned a mission to seize a shipment of nuclear weapons that became known to us via a hack of the Cylons network. I had wanted the Solaria, but she is not ready. As Athena does not have a permanent XO ,,,I have Commander Indira Modi on loan.”

“Due to the lack of bunk space, Commander Modi is bunking with our pilots. The combat jump is scheduled for 15 minutes.”

* * *

Commander Modi was disoriented when she woke up in a pilot bunk on the Battlestar Athena. It had been a short time as a Battlestar commander. Modi was surprised how used to her privacy she had become. She felt uncomfortable as she stripped and showered with the Viper pilots who are on their best behavior in front of a commander.

She quipped to herself about lines in the shower, being for a lower class person. It was easy to get into a bad frame of thought. She sternly reminded herself to never let that happen.

10 minutes later, she was up in CIC are uniform pressed and everything shiny and perfect, as usual, standing in the much smaller, combat information center of the Battlestar Athena. She was self conscious as she had no time to take care of her hair. It was wet, hanging limply to shoulder length behind her back.

“I am not used to these displays,” Modi reported, “however it seems that the board is green on all task force members. Task force 77 is ready for a combat jump.”

“Lets hope every ship in this task force comes home,” Commander Evans said in a whisper.


“Jump Complete, DRADIS shows 10 Cylon contacts. Launching raiders.”

“Any sign of the nukes?” Commander Evans asked.

“Negative sir,” answered Modi.

“What the frack! We had grade one, near certain intelligence that there was a single Argos loaded with nukes. Where are my fracking nukes?”

“I don’t know Sir, we will take that up after the mission. It’s too late to withdraw.”

“Stand down the marine strike team. Have the raptors reconfigured for search and rescue,” ordered Commander Evans.

“Yes Sir.” Commander Modi replied using her XO voice.


“XO Sitrep,” ordered Commander Evans ordered.

“Formation is set up as per the battle plan. The adamant and bezerk squadrons have excellent firing arks. The air wing is set up for missile defense. Raiders are approaching as expected.”


“Pony Commander Air Group, Defense squadrons, get to work, anti raider squadrons engage, engage, right fracking now!”

“This is Toddler Green squadron get after the raiders. Form up on me!”


“Fleet orders concentrate light and point defense cannons on raider squadrons, weapons free,” ordered Commander Evans.

“Activate anti-raider defense plan. Air wing take note of the triple a corridors and stay out of flak and fire zones,” ordered Modi on wireless.

“Pony acknowledging!”

“Toddler Ack”


“Snake, this is Toddler three raiders on your tail break left!”

“Air wing this is XO Athena, 300 missiles inbound targeting the bezerk squadron. Air wing intercept.“

“Bezerk squadron dive! You are being targeted.You are too high the Artemis flak will not catch the guided missiles,” ordered Modi.


“Bezerk Down! Bezerk Down! Bezerks two and three full defense,continue the dive. More missile salvos inbound!”


“This is Athena actual to the Artemis squadron, increase height slightly and try and provide cover for the remaining Bezerk class ships.”

“This is Athena acting XO to to all Artemis class, maintain flak left, prepare to switch topside battlestar artillery to salvo mode. Sending you target via secure wireless.” Moti ordered after Evans orders were implemented.



“This is task force operations, new inbound missile salvos. 320 inbound missiles. Defensive squadrons engage. All ships maintain flak firing rate.”


“Pony to Spinner, jink right, you are too close to the Triton’s engagement zone, Purple squadron break high and right then engage the missiles while NOT flying through Artemis class flak!”


Athena CIC

“This is Athena XO to Adamant squadron, air wing is under pressure, please provide support fire as opportunities arise,” Commander Modi ordered.

Commander Evans made eye contact with Modi with a bemused look on his face. “Please, for frack’s battlestar commanders, don’t say please. They give orders.”

“Yes Sir,” she answered.


“Athena your flak is hitting the station.”

“Helm maintain distance from the station as we pass,” ordered Commander Evans.

“Actual, if we adjust now we risk collision with the adamant squadron. If we order a course correction, these are yard surplus ships with 60 year old computer and comms gear, it may cause chaos sir,” Modi admonished quietly.

“Helm, belay my last. Steady as she goes.”



“Toddler, that raider nearly shot my ass off. I am leading the charge here. You misfits need to watch my back!”


“Damn they are putting out heavy fire, this is snake. I’m in trouble, need to break right.”


“They just keep coming and coming. Pony the fire is so thick here I could almost walk on it.”


“Another Bezerk is in trouble. Air wing this is task force XO, can you spare any planes to assist the Bezerk squadron?”


“This is Toddler, Upchuck and Bones you and your wingmen break off and try to help the Bezerk squadron.”


“This is Pony, we are still struggling to get the upper hand. Air wing, don’t fly a bent bird. If you take damage, RTB and you live to fight another day.”

CIC Athena


“Another 275 missiles are inbound. Some of them are going to get through.”


“They are trying to loop guided missiles in over the Artemis flak field and hit their fire control. Air wing, clear the airspace above those battlestars!”


“There goes a base star. Take that toasters!”


“The enemy is breaking. Resistance is collapsing.” Commander Evans announced calmly on he wireless.


“Athena. Pony. We still have quite a few raiders to clean up.”


“This is actual. Forward guns to salvo mode. Time to roll through the last few contacts.”


“The team did very well Commander Evans, our losses were limited to a pair of Bezerks. It is painful, but it could have been worse. That intel was very bad. We will have to look at the recordings, but I did not see an Argos base star anywhere.”

“Commander Modi, it was a major intelligence failure. We came out with a task force, and took casualties. The Cylons can afford this kind of attrition. We cannot. All units are ordered to RTB.”

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