PHD #270: EVENT - Trashed
Summary: There's hazardous garbage left behind in Tauron's orbit.
Date: 23 Nov 2041 AE
Related Logs: The Tauron logs in general, none specifically
Khloe Leyla Wade Pallas McCoy Hydra 
Debris-strewn blackness high, high, high above Tauron.
Post-Holocaust Day: #270

[Polly's Hoopty: Hydra] A quarter past 19:00 hours, more than an hour into the latest combat air patrol off Cerberus, and it's a quiet night over Tauron. So far it's been nothing but quiet over Tauron. Just like Aerilon before it. Until, of course, they weren't so quiet anymore. But no sign of toasters tonight. Just the five ships of the Fleet - counting the still-vacant freighter that's still being prepped for civilian use - arrayed in formation around the planet. The brown, rocky orb that is Tauron visible below. And in the planet's high orbit, a lot of garbage. While the Cylons picked Sagittaron and Aerilon clean, they left all the wreckage you'd expect to find in a bombed-out planet over Tauron. Mostly it's the broken pieces of civilian traffic that was probably making a desperate attempt to leave. Desperation that ultimately proved futile for the scraps of them left here.

And among that floating trash heap now are some of Cerberus' pilots. In addition to those flying CAP tonight, a few have been tasked with aerial dumpster-diving. Our to identify items that might be priority salvage targets, to be retrieved later. There's a lot of garbage to sift through to find treasures amidst the trash.

[BlackKnight-853: Khloe] Flying CAP this evening, Captain Vakos' flight plan takes her lazily past the ring of debris that rings Tauron. Every so often her Viper easily dodges out of the way of errant trash whose course takes it unpredictably close, as DRADIS is more or less a jumbled mess. Eyes open.

[Harrier-307: Leyla] DUMPSTER DIVING! If one needs useful trash salvaged, one turns to the queen of reappropriation. Big Bertha, complete with Sweet Pea and Skeeter are moseying their way through the wreckage, the little raptor turning herself this way and that as the two work their way through a particularly juicy bit of space real estate. Every now and again, the raptor seems to reorient itself towards the vipers flying outside of the space rust belt, as if to make sure all is well, before they go back to picking through the proverbial trash.

[BlackKnight-662: Wade] Wade is flying on Khloe's six, he is on CAP with the Captain at the moment. He is looking around the area as he carefully maneuvers his Viper. "This place is a mess…" voices the pilot. What he said, probably doesn't go out to the COM systems, that's mostly just to himself. His attention moves for a brief second to the DRADIS, and seeing that at this moment, the readings are just, awful… he looks up again. Now, he switches on his com link but doesn't say anything yet.

[BlackKnight-309: Pallas] Pallas drew the short straw and got stuck on salvage hunting for tonight. However, he hasn't found one single thing worth bringing in yet; if he has, there's been not a word from him over comms all night. Instead, he's spending his time drifting through a particularly dense area of the wreckage. His Viper rolls slowly as it carries forward without thrust, small adjustments being made in bursts to fine-tune his seemingly lazy path through the space junk. So far, he's made it about halfway through without anything touching the body of his bird.

[TAC3] "Poppy" Khloe says, "Drips, Poppy. Keep your eyes peeled. DRADIS is a mess, over."

[TAC3] "Drips" Wade says, "Poppy, Drips. Copy that. Mostly relying on visuals here."

<FS3> Leyla rolls Alertness: Good Success.

<FS3> Pallas rolls Alertness: Great Success.

[Polly's Hoopty: Hydra] 'Jumbled mess' is an apt description of the DRADIS display in and around the wreckage that dots space above Tauron, and it just gets worse as one has to navigate among the stuff. There's definitely a lot of blasted base metal to choose from, though finding something intact enough for something other than scrap repair work will take more sifting. Apart from being a general bitch to navigate, it can cause the instruments to register random blips and ghosts on the DRADIS. The Vipers farther off from it have a slightly easier time of things, though it's still not the relative pleasure CAP flying above Aerilon was most of the time.

[TAC3] "Poppy" Khloe says, "Sweetiepea, Poppy. What's it look like down there? Anything worth stealing? Over."

[Harrier-307: Leyla] "Sweet Pea, we're getting another blip, can't get a fix on precisely where it's coming from. It's like, it keeps drifting in and out," so says Skeeter, calling up from her controls in the back of the raptor. "Well, I don't like the idea of writing it off, so let's head over in the general vicinity and see if anything pops out at us." All of that inside the raptor, before Leyla keys up the ship to ship, already maneuvering Bertha towards the general area Skeeter plots into the DRADIS for her.

[BlackKnight-662: Wade] Wade keeps himself on formation with Khloe, the man has his eyes open and is carefully looking around. He makes small corrections on his flight path to avoid hitting chunks of metal, or some other crap. The man keeps steady control on his Viper and already thinks of future tasks, all of them potentially as fun as this one. He listens to the chatter on the com channel but doesn't participate at this moment.

[TAC3] "Sweet Pea" Leyla says, "A whole lot of nothing. Looks like space used to when we got done with a run. Poppy, we're going ghost chasing, got another random blip on Skeeter's DRADIS, going to see if it's anything we might be interested in. Again."

[TAC3] "Poppy" Khloe says, "Keep talking, Sweetiepea. Drips and I are in the neighborhood."

[BlackKnight-309: Pallas] Steady… steady. Pallas continues to roll and veer through the wreckage with effortless ease. Getting into a small area free of clutter, he gives his thrusters a burst, jackknifing himself 90 degrees straight up from his previous vector. And then back to drifting. He doesn't comment on the comm chatter even with the blip that he sees on his own DRADIS. Ghosts have been popping up on his sensors all night.

[Polly's Hoopty: Hydra] There are ghosts and there are ghosts. And this one gets slightly less ephemeral as Leyla, and Pallas, get closer to it. Whatever it is, it's 'strongest' around the wreckage of an old transport ship. Which is presently in several dozen pieces. Its landing bay is blown clear open the the vaccuum of space. Nothing like the Cerberus' hangar deck, but large enough to fly a few ships in and out of. As they near it, they get another ping on their DRADIS. Still indistinct, but stronger this time. Khloe and Wade will see it on their systems now as well. Still entirely unclear what it is.

[Harrier-307: Leyla] "Alright, that's definitely hot in there." Sweet Pea doesn't look back to Skeeter, doesn't need to, to know that the ECO is trying to reconfigure her equipment to get a better handle on what's showing up on their DRADIS from inside the remains of that transport. "Going to hang my tail out, see what we can see." Which she moves to do, to give herself a better visual on the innards of the pieces of the ship.

[TAC3] "Sweet Pea" Leyla says, "Spiral, we're approaching to investigate this signal it's definite. Pinpointed to the remains of that transport. Mind tagging along while we wiggle our tailfeathers? Poppy, Drips, you reading anything on yours?"

[TAC3] "Drips" Wade says, "Sweet Pea, Drips. I have a reading on my DRADIS, can't define what it is, but there's something there."

[TAC3] "Poppy" Khloe says, "Confirmed, Sweetiepea. Drips, on me. We're going to take a perpendicular course to the search Raptor. Let's give her some support, just in case."

[TAC3] "Spiral" Pallas says, "Sweet Pea, Spiral. Seen the ghost reappear on my DRADIS. Just keep your fat ass clear of my flightpath and you're good. Settling in on your three and holding."

[BlackKnight-853: Khloe] And true to her comm, Poppy's Viper turns from its previous course, arcing over the debris field that Bertha is currently poking around.

[TAC3] "Drips" Wade says, "Poppy, Drips. Copy that, moving to assist."

[BlackKnight-662: Wade] After saying that over the COM, Wade repositions his Viper and makes his way to Leyla and Skeeter's Raptor. He pushes the throttle enough to create a small burst and then slows down again, mostly using course correctors as he moves to that location.

[BlackKnight-309: Pallas] Pallas does as he says and comes up to the right of Leyla's Raptor. His flight path getting there is twisted and convoluted; he ends up with the bottom of his Viper facing toward the side of Leyla's, their two birds forming an obtuse angle. The reason for it is fairly obvious - it's the best position and angle for him to be in to get a mostly clear path out of the debris and it still gives him a firing position if required.

[Polly's Hoopty: Hydra] The call, whatever it is, is coming from inside the ship. Or, at least, the remains of its hangar deck. And, as Leyla and Pallas get closer, it only gets stronger. Ping, ping, ping. It's still jumbled and unclear what it is, but it's a definite energy signature of…something.

[Harrier-307: Leyla] "Something's definitely alive in there, picking up an unidentified radio contact, pinging our wireless, but it's not anything we've encountered before." Skeeter calls up the info to Sweet Pea, the pilot adjusting, to try to actually see where the signal is coming from, if possible. "Record and save everything we can on the signal coming in, but send no response at this time."

[TAC3] "Sweet Pea" Leyla says, "Poppy, Spiral, Drips, picking up an unidentified radio contact, attempting to ping our wireless. Some sort of code, which we are recording, but we are not responding at this time. Attempting to pinpoint the point of origin of the signal."

[TAC3] "Poppy" Khloe says, "Copy, Sweetiepea. Cerberus, Poppy. Reporting a possible live contact. Raptor is investigating. I'm diverting from my normal flight plan to provide support."

[BlackKnight-309: Pallas] Pallas' Viper starts firing its RCS thrusters in sequence, the result of which is that he puts his bird into a very slow reverse. He continues to back away from the transport, peeling away from Leyla's Raptor until he's out of range of that wireless ping.

[TAC3] "Spiral" Pallas says, "Copy. They're also pinging me on my wireless, so it must be a broadcast signal on this frequency. I'm falling back out of range."

[Harrier-307: Leyla] "What the frak is that? Skeeter, give me a full scan of whatever the hell that is." Leyla, unlike Spiral, isn't pulling back. She's not using her signal lights to illuminate the hangar, because that might be you know, bad, but she is pushing forward to try to get a better angle.

[TAC3] "Sweet Pea" Leyla says, "Flight, there's something broadcasting inside the hangar of this transport. I can't get a good fix on it yet. Looks big, might be a shuttle, or some sort of large storage container. There is a red light flashing on it. Skeeter is scanning her full suite(OOC: which would be biological, thermal, electrical, etc). How would you like us to proceed?"

[BlackKnight-662: Wade] Wade keeps his current path, but gets to see how Spiral starts moving back. He is not using the thrusters right now, so the Viper is moving reaaaally slow right now. Gotta be careful, you know? Still he remains on Khloe's wing. The man takes a deep breath and exhales a relaxed breath.

<FS3> Pallas rolls Vipers+10: Good Success.

<FS3> Leyla rolls Raptors: Failure.

[Polly's Hoopty: Hydra] That pulse has been getting steadier and steadier, more intent about making 'contact' with Pallas' Viper and Leyla's Raptor. But in an instant, whatever it's doing accelerates like mad. Perhaps triggered by the Raptor's proximity because suddenly Leyla's engines go absolutely dead. Leaving her stalled near it. Pallas is fortunate he was keeping his distance, as his Viper does continue to pull back. However, it suddenly jerks in a spasm, as if *thinking* very hard about stalling. It does not, just yet, but that thing tried to do *something* to it.

[BlackKnight-309: Pallas] Pallas' movements so far have been smooth and controlled, even when he was bringing his Viper into crazy turns and angles. But his verniers start firing out of sequence and with varying magnitude, sending his bird jerking into a spasm. "Focus, you Gods-be-damned whore!" he roars, struggling to regain control. He's still moving backwards, but there's nothing smooth about it anymore. He speaks into his comm briefly, then there's a slight static before he goes into comms blackout.

[TAC3] "Poppy" Khloe says, "Drips, Poppy. Keep your distance. Sweetiepea, talk to me. What the frak happened?"

[BlackKnight-853: Khloe] Captain Vakos' Viper pulls back, flipping nose-to-tail so that she can slow her approach suddenly with her main engines. She then flips again so she can get a visual of where Bertha is supposedly poking around.

[TAC3] "Spiral" Pallas says, "Flight, Spiral. The signal's frakking with my systems like back at Picon. Going full analog and cutting comms. If Sweet Pea's not back up and moving out of there in three minutes, I'm going in. Spiral out."

[Harrier-307: Leyla] It's obvious something is wrong with Bertha when she suddenly stops, dead in the water, drifting in front of the hangar bay of the wrecked transport. What transmissions she tries to send to the rest of the flight is garbled at best. So she does what any enterprising pilot would do. She activates her signal lights, thank goodness for old Payback. She needs to buy that man a…well, nevermind that now. Her signal lights begin to flash, sending a coded message, hopefully, to the rest of the ships in the area. 'Engines down. Electrical shot. Attempting restart. Do not approach.'

[TAC3] "Drips" Wade says, "Poppy, Drips. Going to full stop, I'll see if I can keep one designated spot for as long as I can. Spiral, copy that. Preparing to go full analog if needed."

[TAC3] "Poppy" Khloe says, "Spiral, Poppy, don't move in unless you get orders to. Spiral? Spiral! Frak!"

[BlackKnight-662: Wade] You know that feeling? That feeling of, 'something's wrong here' Yeah, potentially everyone was getting that, and Wade is no different. When Leyla's voice is heard, he starts redirecting his Viper to accomplish a full stop, and he confirms that when he hears Khloe. After resetting himself in one single spot, making sure that he's not going to hit anything -at least for the moment- he looks at his controls and gets ready to go full manual if needed.

[Polly's Hoopty: Hydra] The light in that shuttle isn't pulsing anymore. Not with that ghostly electrical signal anyway. But it is doing something. Leyla, with her systems down, is blissfully ignorant for the moment, but the Vipers could see it. There's a surging build-up of energy. Like an engine overheating. And nearing the point of blowing.

[TAC3] "Poppy" Khloe says, "Drips, Poppy. See that? Overloading engine. It's a frakking trap. Spiral, Poppy, do you read? Leyla, Poppy, do you read? Get the frak out of there!"

[Harrier-307: Leyla] Yes, the blissful ignorance the the nearly dead. Skeeter and Leyla are hard at work trying to bring the raptor back online, the two harriers working like busy little beavers trying to resuscitate poor Bertha. "Come on, girl. You survived a frakkin cylon fleet, we can so this." Yes, she's talking to her ship. No, nobody but Skeeter can hear her.

[BlackKnight-853: Khloe] Khloe aims her Viper so that her signal lights are beaming straight down towards Pallas' Viper, and where Bertha was last known to be. Lights flash, equivalent to, 'Danger! Bug out!' And, in the meantime, it's clear that her engines are warming up for a high-G blast.

[TAC3] "Drips" Wade says, "Poppy, Drips. What about the Raptor, we can't leave them there."

[TAC3] "Poppy" Khloe says, "Sweetpea knows her Raptor. She'll get it moving."

[TAC3] "Drips" Wade says, "We don't leave people behind, Captain."

[BlackKnight-309: Pallas] "Turn your frakking high-beams off," Pallas grumbles when Khloe starts flashing lights at him. "This ain't the Gods-be-damned highway." He unceremoniously flips Khloe off, not that she can see it, and swings his Viper around to a better position to see what's going on. Which is when he sees the energy build-up. With no sensors up except for his analog gauges - pretty much all useless out of atmo - he has no clue what exactly it is, but there's a pretty good visceral reaction to the visual cues. "Do or die," he says to himself with a shrug, and guides his Viper in toward Bertha. He's now upside-down and directly on top of her, cockpit-to-cockpit, so he can see what's going on in there. And more importantly, whether or not they're going to get her moving in time.

[TAC3] "Poppy" Khloe says, "Nobody's getting left behind, Lieutenant. Now stow it."

[Harrier-307: Leyla]
Comms are frakked all to hell, but Leyla can see the light coming in through her viewport, Khloe's signal to her. She may not be able to see what's happening, may not even be able to do what needs doing, but she can do this. There's a moment, barely longer than it takes to breath, before Sweet Pea sends a single signaled message back. Aimed at the flight, meant for Khloe. And while it's not Leyla voice, it might as well be. To flashes of her signal lights, before she goes back to work. 'Go.' And by the time Spiral is in position to look in her window, she's already back to work with Skeeter.

[BlackKnight-662: Wade] Wade keeps looking at that Raptor, and then looks at Khloe. After that, he switches his comms off and goes to full manual. He pushes the thrusters and moves in, stopping close to the other Viper and the Raptor. Right away, the younger pilot uses his signal systems to transmit a message to Pallas. 'GO UNDER BELLY, ACT AS SUPPORT AND GUIDE. I'LL PUSH' Hopefully this will work and they'll be able to push the Raptor away.

<FS3> Leyla rolls Repair: Great Success.

[TAC3] "Sweet Pea" Leyla says, "Engines are back up at fifty percent, but I'm never going to clear this thing in time. Spiral…Drips, if you two could give me a push before you gtfo, we would really appreciate it."

[Polly's Hoopty: Hydra] The signature from that shuttle, inside that wrecked hangar, is getting near a boiling point on those instruments that can still register it, the exterior of the wrecked little shuttle actually glowing red with heat now. It's going to blow, and it's going to blow soon.

[BlackKnight-853: Khloe] "What the frak?" Khloe asks nobody inside her cockpit, staring in disbelief as Wade breaks formation, leaves his wingman, and rushes in to what appears to be sudden doom. Scowling and fueled by disobedient subordinates, Khloe aims her Viper to the trajectory that Bertha will be being pushed.

[Harrier-307: Leyla] "That's my girl!" Okay, technically Leyla is probably speaking to Bertha, but the sentiment could equally and truthfully be applied to Skeeter, as the raptor's electrical system sputters back to life, dragging though, at only half power. Still, it's enough to get Sweet Pea back in the pilot's seat, enough for her to catch sight of Spiral and now Drips through her front viewport. But she's still trying to thrust back and away from the soon to be, possibly, explosion. Pushing the engines as much as they can go, in their current state of operation.

[TAC3] "Poppy" Khloe says, "Cerberus, Poppy. Vipers are attempting to rescue disabled Raptor. I am going weapons free to clear a path as the Raptor may not be able to dodge. I repeat, I am clearing a path. Over."

<FS3> Khloe rolls Gunnery: Failure.

[BlackKnight-309: Pallas] Pallas gets Wade's signal. He grimaces toward the other Viper pilot and shakes his head. Whether or not Wade can actually see that is irrelevant; there's no time for him to maneuver underneath Leyla, and there's no time for him to signal back, either. All he can do is act and hope Wade picks up fast enough to help. He starts pushing upward and rolling counter-clockwise to try to get the Raptor into the tilted position he was in earlier beside her, guiding her to the clearest path out of the debris. How he's going to get out is another question altogether, since he'll now be closest to the blast when it goes off, and Wade will most likely be shielded by the Raptor, wherever he ends up.

Wade has spent 1 luck points on To push that damn Raptor.
<FS3> Wade rolls Vipers-15: Terrible Failure.

Pallas has spent 1 luck points on Using Viper to push Leyla's Raptor.
<FS3> Pallas rolls Vipers-15: Success.

[Polly's Hoopty: Hydra] Khloe's KEWs light up toward the debris in the path of the outgoing Raptor, but they miss their mark on the debris in its path. That Raptor will have to bump some wreckage coming out, in addition to its other problems.

<FS3> Wade rolls Vipers: Success.

[BlackKnight-662: Wade] Wade actually picks up what Pallas wants to do, he also sees that shake of his head. Wade, doesn't really do anything or say anything about that, but he does form up to help the other pilot with the 'push' efforts. Perhaps in the hurry of trying to get the Raptor out of there, Wade pushes a little to hard and places a niiiice dent on that bird. Nice, the deck people is certainly not going to like that. But hey, they get the damn bird back, and more important, it's passengers!

[Harrier-307: Leyla]
With the push from the two vipers, well, one push and one very hard bump, but she's not going to let things go down to semantics, Bertha manages to make enough speed to clear the explosion to come, Leyla ignoring anything she and the little ship that could might hit on the way out. She'll take some damage if it means not being exploded.

[TAC3] "Sweet Pea" Leyla says, "I'm good, we're going, the two of you get the hell out of here.'"

[BlackKnight-309: Pallas] The moment that Leyla's lined up with her exit path, Pallas disengages his Viper from the Raptor and punches it, taking off on a completely different path from her. His vector takes him through a lot more debris, but he wants to put the explosion fully behind him. There's no argument that some dents and dings on the bird are far better than turning into a fine red mist in space. So he pilots as best he can using the ol' Mark One Eyeball, but there's not much fancy acrobatics this time. Just survival instinct.

[Polly's Hoopty: Hydra] There's no ticking clock in space, so they can't actually see the bomb of an overheating engine's timer click down to *0*. But the molten heat signature registering on those systems still watching it is close enough. *BOOOOOM*. The remains of the shuttle's back compartment explode, taking out what remained of the portion of the transport wall it was lodged by, and filling the hangar - and the space just outside it - with shrapnel like debris. Pallas and Leyla are clear well in time to avoid it. Wade, for his part, looks rather like someone in a movie running away from an explosion. Or flying, in this case. Lucky him, since a Viper actually *can* outrun one. He'll catch some of that shrapnel in his ship's hindparts, however.

[BlackKnight-853: Khloe] Khloe's Viper veers off, making sure she gives the Raptor as much room to flee in a straight line as it can. Once the explosion cooks off, she checks her DRADIS, flipping a few instruments on and off to get better readings.

[TAC3] "Poppy" Khloe says, "Flight, Poppy. Report your status, over."

[TAC3] "Sweet Pea" Leyla says, "We're alright, some damage to the raptor, but we're clear. Still at fifty percent, but heading back to the deck."

[BlackKnight-662: Wade] Wade starts looking around as soon as the Raptor is online and GTFO, he seeks for a spot to use and finally finds one. He pushes on the thrusters and the engines respond right away. The Viper starts to move as fast as possibly between all that flying crap, and Wade makes sure to get as few hits as possible. Needless to say, he does get some. And yes, after the explosion, you get the usual slow camera sequence with the 'HOOOOLY SHIIIIT' or something similar to that. He does mange to outrun the main blast, but a lot of stuff starts to hit his Viper over and over again. The cockpit starts to shake as his entire control system. Wade fights as much as he can to keep it under control and eventually, it stops, and he is out, and alive. Now, he flips the instruments online, hearing a partial of Khloe's message.

[TAC3] "Drips" Wade says, "Poppy, Drips. Viper suffered some minor damage but it'll live. SweetPea, Skeeter, sorry for the bumpy ride ladies."

[TAC3] "Sweet Pea" Leyla says, ""So stupid. I should have known better than to try to get close to that thing. Frakkin boobytrap. This whole field is probably riddled with them. Bet that's why they left the damned debris up here in the first place. Trap sends a signal and doesn't activate if it receives the right response. If it doesn't, it destroys everything in the vicinity.""

[BlackKnight-309: Pallas] There's no reply on comms from Pallas, since he's still completely powered down except for the bare flight necessities. He doesn't bother regrouping with the others or even trying to signal to them. Typical. His trajectory, however, is clear enough at signaling his intent. The Viper's frakked, he's headed back to Cerberus.

[Harrier-307: Leyla] Leyla might be fuming, relatively speaking, over the wireless, but she's still doing what she was brought out here to do, which is trying to make her way back to the Cerberus and the safety of the deck. And the flight computers into which she can download the signal Skeeter recorded during their little escapade.

[TAC3] "Poppy" Khloe says, "Don't kick yourself, Sweetiepea. Now we know. We'll give your logs to the Knuckledraggers to figure out so we don't get caught unawares next time. Okay, kids, back to the barn. I don't want us continuing with damaged birds."

[BlackKnight-853: Khloe] "I wish there was a light signal for 'I am going to tear you a new gashole'," mutters the Knights SL to herself, no doubt still quite peeved about Pallas' misplaced gallantry and Wade's disobeying of orders. There's no 'flying casual' for her back to Cerberus for her, oh no.

[BlackKnight-662: Wade] And Wade does exactly that, he moves straight to Cerberus. Yes, his engines are acting up a little and the back portion of the Viper does have some similarities with a piece of cheese, /but/ all is well. The controls are responding fairly well, and this, when he reaches Cerberus; grants him a good landing. Home sweet home.

[Polly's Hoopty: Hydra] And after the bang, after the explosion, after Sweet Pea and Spiral and Drips escaping that trap by the skin of their teeth…the debris field is quiet again. Filled a few more shards of extra wreckage, some of it still smouldering hot, but quiet. No new contacts, no more stranger than stranger DRADIS ghosts. Not that those returning to the ship worse for wear would probably call it 'peaceful' anymore.

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