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Sacrifice of Angels

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  • 2 weeks later...


"Yall see those ships? They're not f*cking around this time"



"Ten things you need to do if Anglia invades a thread:"



"Finally someone is going to do something about those freaks in Cascadia #AngliaForever"



"I wonder what our "fabulous leader", TS Yiu is gonna do for this. Launch a new palette?"



Retrieving call log 12942.221.23 from GalCloud Server 11XP0-1

Error 544: Incomplete data. Contact GalCloud support for further information.

Commencing Playback:

"Allo Lynne, to what do I owe the pleasure of such a late-night call?"


"Yes of course I've been watching the news, it's practically my job at this point."


"My job is actually to be stunning, cunty, and a style icon."

"Hey! You can call me several things. You can call me cocky, you can call me b*tchy, you can call me pretty, you can call me gorgeous. But what you're not going to call me is an ineffective leader of public opinion."


"So what exactly do you want me to do, my darling? Grab a gun and start shooting invaders myself?" 


"Well, obviously I know how to shoot a gun. Don't you?"


"Lynne, if I had a gun right now, I'd use it to shoot myself. I'm that f*cking busy."


"I'm actually quite surprised that Tagmatium is coming to our aid here. Maybe our friend Kommodos is looking for a new set of papal robes."


"Oh, I love Aiden. Remind me to send the entire family a gift basket. Oh, and Margaret an invitation to Club Ecdysis next time she's in town. f*ck it, send one to Kommodos too."


"Yeah Lynne, invite the holiest man on Eurth to a burlesque club in the middle of the most sinful city on the planet. That'll go down well."


"Yes, I promise I'll play nice with whoever they send, as long as they're not here to convert the populace."


"I'm a social leader, not a military one. There's a reason I, sorry, we founded a whole new private military corporation."


"Listen, I promise that if they get any closer, I'll grab a helicopter from my house to the DAUFA compound, but for the time being, I need to get this seam right, or I'll walk myself into the sea."


End Playback.

Connection terminated by user. 

Edited by Galahinda (see edit history)
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  • 3 weeks later...


Sitting in one of the many black town cars that populated the streets of Cascadia's urban core was Yiu Amistacia, the island's leader swimming in media that would have otherwise drowned an older, less proficient user. In one hand was their phone, a downpour of messages from various political, corporate, and personal sources dominated the upper section of the screen. Of note is the current text conversation between the MYNE Creative Director and newly minted Klynne Security Group owner, Princess Margaret Redmond of Seylos. 


girl no f*cking way you actually pulled the I own 51% of this company card

I totally did

Lynne said he nearly dropped dead when you told him

He looked like he was about to

hey i know you're eager to get outta here, but you wanna make use of the new KSG amenities Mme CEO?

I tried to leave earlier, but the reporters here are ruthless. I couldn't safely leave, so I'm holed up in the board rooms.

slay, i'll meet you there

It's not like I can go anywhere with this damn media swarm dear. 

see u in 15 ❤️

Not willing to waste a moment, Yiu immediately swapped to their news feed, skimming the titles as they did so,

Cascadia Current: Seylos Ousts Anglian Ally Spencer Klynne

POSE: Every Look Worth Seeing from Galahinda's Newest CEO Princess Margaret

Galahinan Financial Times: KSG Investors Ousted In Seylosian Market Aggression

The single wireless headphone in the socialite's left ear was filled with the preliminary tracks for their upcoming runway show sent by the MYNE in-house DJ, ADDYR. The show's focus on furs had led the pair to develop a sharp frantic sound in contrast to the pieces' smooth and comforting lines, from which Yiu was currently wearing a knee-length mink fur coat, the bottom edge of with had been spattered with black and gold ink. Their right ear was half tuned to the Androni Commercial Solutions press conference being broadcast to the tv embedded in the seatback in front of them. Their left hand was occupied, as it usually was with the JUUL e-cigarette that they always kept on or near their person. 

"Ma'am, we've arrived at the KSG headquarters. Shall I find parking?" asked the chauffeur, speaking for the first time since the car had entered the chaos of the urban core, harshly pulling Yiu from their media dive. The media swarm really had coalesced around the base of the KSG headquarters, the throng of reporters crowding the media bullpen that had been set up by the new -Seylosian- owners. Yiu couldn't help but feel bad for the poor Seylosian PR intern they had installed behind the bullpen's lectern, poor girl is miles away from home, and they just left her out for the vultures. They thought to themself, sighing.

Yiu called out to the car's driver, "Pull up at the steps, Chaz. I'll go rescue their intern before she embarrasses them further." 

"Yes, Ma'am," replied the driver, expertly cutting through the amassing crowd and pulling up to the steps before exiting to open the door for the Chairman. 

Remember your affirmations b*tch, 'I am fame, I am lust, I am pixels, I am nothing.'

Stepping out of the heavily tinted Towncar's backseat, Yiu elected to forgo striking a pose for the fashion reporters, instead, cat walking up the steps and next to the girl at the podium.

Leaning in so only the girl could hear Yiu whispered, "My dear, it seems you're out of your element on my island. Why don't you take a break inside?"

"Yes, ma-" hastily replied the woman, voice shaking. 

"Hello, everyone," began Yiu, not even listening to her response, "while I'm sure our Seylosian ally was doing her best, yall are bloodthirsty, and we'll give her a break,"  

Taking off their sunglasses, Yiu pointed to a raised hand in the audience, "You, what've you got?"

The startled reporter hurriedly flipped through their notepad before hesitantly asking, "Is it true that since Klynne is no longer a CEO, he will not be attending any further corporate board meetings?"

"Do you attend our meetings?"

"N-no?" replied the reporter shakily

"Then there's your answer. You?" said Yiu with a sly smirk, gesturing to a man at the front of the group.

"Johnathan Leonn, with Galahindan Financial Times, is this even legal?"

"What, to buy shares in a publicly traded company? Thank god you're pretty. Otherwise, I don't know how you'd keep a job." chided the Chairman before turning back towards the crowd. 

"Oh, my stars, is that Anita with POSE I see down there?" beamed Yiu, noticing a woman with a jet-black wolf cut waving to them, "Darling, what can I help you with?"

"A party invite would be nice bu-"

"Done. Anything else?" shot back the Chairman with a laugh.

"Is it true you've started taking estrogen?" 

"Oh yeah, until we live in the future where I can swap out my body parts at will, I'll have to take estrogen."

Before they could continue the banter, the harsh chime from their phone signaling a message from Lynne sounded. Without a second thought, Yiu read the message.

Wrap it up Yiu. There's better uses of your time. 


With that, Yiu picked their sunglasses off the podium and put them back on, "Well, darlings, I'm sure you've got more questions, but at this point, I've stopped caring. If they really matter, our Seylosian friend can answer them. So play nice, or I'll have you blacklisted from MYNE events for a year, Abî." Taking one last moment to pose for the flashing cameras, Yiu strutted up the remaining steps and into the building. 

Walking through the halls of their biggest political enemy's literal headquarters was a surreal experience for Yiu, the brutalist concrete halls standing in imposing contrast to their oversized mink fur coat. The sound of their heeled jackboots echoing off the hard stone floors was drowned out by the pumping bass of the newest Aliyah Arotica song, BCE, playing in their headphones. It only took a minute for them to encounter their first KSG soldier, but they became more frequent as they approached the elevators that led to the board room. If any had called out or attempted to stop the Chairman from progressing, they didn't notice or care. Indeed, if any had touched them, it would have been hell to pay. They only stopped at the elevator doors at the realization that they hadn't been opened in anticipation of their arrival. 

Taking one headphone out, the music stopped, and Yiu turned to face the soldier standing before the call button. The soldier, who would have stood an imposing full head and shoulders above Yiu had the model's boots not been heeled and whose shoulders were twice as broad, stood facing forward, face intentionally blank. "Excuse me. I'm meeting a dear friend. Mind pushing the call button?" asked Yiu, their voice dripping with artificial sweetness. It took a moment before the soldier responded. Then, after placing his hand against a well-hidden earpiece, he pushed the call button and wordlessly stepped aside. Yiu followed suit, placing their headphone back into their ear and stepping into the elevator with a glare.

The elevator ride was relatively quick given the building's height but lacked any sort of exterior window, given the building's brutalist design. Yiu took a brief moment to shoot Margaret a text,

On my way up, your guy downstairs is a dick

That's his job. 

Moments later, the elevator arrived at the building's pinnacle, and the doors opened with a soft chime. Stepping out without looking up from their phone, Yiu was startled when they ran face-first into the chest of yet another KSG soldier. Uncharacteristically unbalanced, the model fell to the floor. A voice called out in heavily accented Galaçoise from behind the behemoth, "Yiu, my love, is that you?"

"Ouaih," replied Yiu, taking a moment to re-orient themself before putting an expectant hand out for the soldier. The soldier dutifully grasped the Chairman's hand with his own massive one, deftly pulling them back to their feet. Yiu took a moment to give the bear of a man a once over, admiring his mountainous physique. Collecting themself, Yiu put a hand out for a proper handshake, "Yiu Amistacia, MYNE Creative Director." They said with a pronounced blush. "Lieutenant Peyton Hoss, KSG," came the man's reply, nearly crushing the Chairman's hand in his grip as he shook their hand. "Are you looking for a career change any time soon? Perhaps into the personal bodyguard field?" asked Yiu, brushing a strand of their hair back into place behind their ear. "No, Ma'am, I'm quite happy here," Peyton responded. "Oh, alright then," said Yiu, unable to hide the disappointment in their voice. They were surprised when Peyton leaned down to whisper into their ear. "I would take your number, though," he said, his beard brushing against the Chairman's ear, causing the model's pale skin to flush an even deeper red as he passed them his phone. 

"If you're done trying to f*ck my soldiers, I'm in the presentation room," called out the voice in Anglish, causing Peyton to blush an even deeper red than Yiu. Handing Peyton his phone back, their number now in the man's contact list, Yiu followed the sound of the voice to the presentation room, where Princess Margaret Redmond was sitting in front of a projected map of the island. Upon entering the space, Yiu immediately squealed and ran over to their longtime friend, who had stood up and thrown herself into the incoming hug. After taking a moment to linger in the hug, the pair broke apart and immediately began talking over each other. Finally, after several moments of excited interruptions, Margaret held up a hand and said, "Alright, you first."

"My love, how did you win their loyalty so fast?" Yiu asked, nodding toward the soldier in the other room. 

"Oh, it was easy. Turns out when you give your workers paid sick days and vacation days, they tend to like you better than their current boss. Have you tried it?" Margaret said with a pointed sideward glance.

"No, I tend to lead via sex appeal," quipped Yiu, tossing their hair and meeting the princess's eyes with a smirk, their mind immediately drifting back towards Peyton. 

"And you're about to get invaded," replied Margaret with a mischievous smile.

"oh you b*tch," cried Yiu in mock dismay, collapsing demurely into the plush chair beside them, "And here I thought you were going to stop that from happening!" 

"It's a little late for that, but we've given you a much better fighting chance now that Klynne is out of the picture." sagely responded Margaret, walking back towards the open laptop. 

"About him," Began Yiu, their voice taking on a rare, severe tone, "We're just going to let him walk away like this? Margs, we have so many options here." 

"There's a mugging gone wrong, a hair dryer falling into the bath, or a chauffeur driving his car into a pillar." they continued, gesturing as if to will it into existence via magic. 

"We're not going to kill him just because he annoys you 'Staci. He's out of power and no longer a threat." Margaret replied, unplugging the laptop from the projector before moving to sit next to her friend. 

"Exactly! He's out of power, and you know he's going to go straight to the Anglians with everything he knows about our defenses." objected Yiu. 

"Yiu, you know I love you dearly, but we can't engineer the death of every person who slightly wrongs us." answered the princess, eyes sharp with warning. 

"I'd beg to differ," Yiu replied indignantly, "Allegedly, mind you, we do it all the time."

"Then beg," came the quick reply from Margaret, instantly dispelling the building tension as Yiu recognized the now immortal reference and laughed in turn. 

"So, how long are you planning to stay?" they asked.

"Until the media disperses or a helicopter arrives to take me to the airport, whichever happens first." shrugged Margaret, 

"You don't want to come to see a show at Club Ecdysis?" asked Yiu, eyes alight with mischief.

"Yiu, we're about to be at war, there's no time, and I need to get out of the line of fire, as I suggest you do." 

"C'mon Margs, what good is sitting alone in your room?" Said Yiu reaching out to grab their friend's hand. 

"Come hear the music play," continued Margaret softly, recalling the old Galahindan adage that Yiu had used many times to draw her to the island, reaching out and returning the gesture.

"Life is a cabaret, mon cher, come to the cabaret." finished Yiu.

Before Margaret could respond, a knock came on the door as Peyton, accompanied by several Seylosian soldiers, arrived. "We're here to transport you to the airport, princess," said one of the soldiers with a salute."Well, that's my cue, love. I promise once this war is over, I'll come with you to a show," said Margaret, standing up and pulling Yiu into a hug. Yiu followed suit before breaking the embrace to hold her at arms length, "You better. Otherwise, I'll have to invade Seylos myself to get you to come." Joked Yiu, eyes slightly watery. "Oh girl, don't cry. Otherwise, I will," comforted Margaret with a laugh, "besides, it's not like I'm far."

With a final embrace, the pair separated, with Yiu remaining in the board room and Margaret following the squad of soldiers out towards the helipad. As she walked past Peyton, who had moved to flank the helicopter's door, she stopped and met his gaze, eyes alight. "Make sure Yiu gets out of this shit alive. Otherwise, it's your head." 

"Y-yes ma'am." Came Peyton's reply, shocked at the display of intensity from the otherwise calm and diplomatic princess. "Good!" responded Margaret, intensity instantly replaced with a friendly smile as the Seylosian soldier slammed the helicopter's door shut. Moments later, the helicopter lifted off and began its turn towards the Galahindan International Airport, leaving the soldier alone on the helipad. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 3 weeks later...

Dispatch Operator: We’ve received word from the coast guard of a developing situation on the harbor front. Several ships flying Anglian identification are confirmed approaching.

Harbor Officer: We’ve got confirmation of this from Cascadia already. Seylosians are running the show now, what are our orders?

Dispatch Operator: Stand by.

Dispatch Operator: New orders from command, all units are to evacuate the area immediately and return south to Cascadia. Instruct any local officials who choose not to evacuate to comply with any Anglian forces they meet. Do not engage any Anglian forces.

“Anglian ground units are already sweeping through the north through Port aux-Auxarre. And it seems like they are moving as a more coherent group directly to Cascadia. Mostly ignoring any city or town unless they need it to secure their supply lines.” Commander Moira O’Neill said standing in front of Captain Walker in his office on the Defiant.

“As expected. At least the few Galahindan forces stationed there listened and made their way back to Cascadia. What’s the situation on the ground looking like?”

The commander raised her eyebrow while looking down at the tablet she was cradling that held the report she was referencing, “We have about ten thousand troops that have already landed in Cascadia, right now another convoy is preparing to make its landing. Roughly three thousand DAUFA mercenaries have been deployed as well to help bolster more vulnerable sections of the city. Brigadier Ryley has decided to use KSG mercenaries in a more logistics supporting role.”

“Makes sense,” Walker replied, “We may pay their wages now but they’ve never been very reliable.”

Before the commander could reply, she was interrupted by a knock at the door. She opened it letting in a young lieutenant who gave a quick salute. Walker stood up in anticipation.

“They’re here aren’t they?”

The lieutenant nodded, “Aye sir, two Anglian task forces have been confirmed by the Galahindan radar station in the Cape of Prosperity. It won’t be long before we’ll be able to see them ourselves.”

“Thank you lieutenant, you’re dismissed.”

The officer gave a quick nod and left the room leaving the Commander and Captain together.

“So it begins?” O’Neill asked.

“It had to start some time Commander.”


Walker walked onto the bridge along with his first officer. The air was tense since every sailor there knew what was coming. Up to now, it would be the largest naval battle of the war, and not just any battle, it could decide the fate of not only Seylos but Eastern Argis and TRIDENT operations in the Adlantic. If the Anglians pushed them out of Galahinda, they could use the island as a base of operations to severely harass TRIDENT forces heading to Europa, and possibly even wreck the invasion.

“Sound General Quarters, send alert status to the fleet.” Captain Walker said, looking out onto the flight deck of the Defiant.

The officer of the deck picked up the main circuit line and spoke into it, “General Quarters. General Quarters. All hands to battle stations. The route of travel is forward and up to starboard, down and aft to port. Set material condition Zebra. Inbound hostile surface and air contacts. This is not a drill.”

Sailors around the ship rushed to their stations, and the transmission from the Defiant reached the other ships, sounding the same state of battle readiness throughout the fleet.

“ACO launch all air assets, prepare for immediate interception of hostile air contacts. Order Thunderchild same status and inform home island and Gallambrian assets.”

The radio operator relayed the message and spoke back to the captain, “ACO responds aye, Thunderchild acknowledges order and confirms flight deployment. Kirkwall reports launch of home island aircraft and Gallambrian aircraft. Cascadia International Airport is ready to receive additional aircraft.”

Commander O’Neill stood next to Captain Walker, “We can take them right?”

Walker looked at his first officer, “We won’t let them cross the Corinian Line. Radio, send out a broad spectrum transmission.”

The radio operator fiddled with their station and turned to the captain in the chair, offering a microphone, “You’re on sir.”

Walker grabbed the microphone and took a deep breath, “This is Captain Walker of the Seylosian Royal Navy, Anglian vessels have crossed into the territorial waters of Galahinda. Bound by treaty, the Kingdom of Seylos and by extension the North Adlantic Union, immediately demand the removal of all Anglian military assets from Galahinda. If refused, we will respond with force.”

There was silence on the bridge and again the radio operator turned to the captain.

“No response sir.”

Walker knew there wouldn’t be one. But, it wouldn’t be very Seylosian of him to at least send the message.

The fleet was close to the Cape of Prosperity in the south of the country, and it didn’t take long before the fleet gained radar contact with the enemy.

“Prepare to fire all fleet batteries.” Walker ordered. The Anglians were at a slight disadvantage in this respect. Seylosian ships were armed with TRIDENT weaponry, giving them the technological edge in the fight. But in this moment only one thing mattered most, Seylos could fire first. Their missiles slightly out-ranged the Anglians.

“Fleet responding, all batteries ready. Air control reports contact with enemy air assets.”

Walker took a breath, realizing what was about to happen, “Order all ships open fire.”


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  • 1 month later...

    I do solemnly swear
    To hold sacred the principles of this Union
    To, without question, protect the lives of the innocent
    To use my greatest abilities to build a greater future for all of Eurth
    From the depths of the Adltantic, to the shores of Europa.
    I will defend the Union from any enemy who wishes it harm

NAU Military Oath, 2023 CE

“Sir, Fleet Command has reported aerial contact with the enemy. Our wings are engaged.”

Captain Lennox was stood nervously on his bridge, trying his best not to pace around the bridge and spread his nervousness like the plague. But just like him, he was sure everyone onboard was terrified. Of course now it was really happening. It wasn’t like the Ardent hadn’t been in tough spots before, facing down an entire Haru task force by itself was no task for the fainthearted. But then, they were mostly sure the Haru weren’t going to fire on them. Now he knew that going into this the fleet wasn’t going to get away unscathed.

Lennox walked up to his XO who was busy talking to the weapons officer, “McCallister, did we get the target assignment yet, we’re about in range.”

McCallister looked up at him from the screen he and the weapons officer were looking at, “Aye, Galahindan land radar station is reporting Anglian cruiser bearing two one degrees distance one two five kilometers.”

“Jesus,” Lennox muttered, turning around looking at the communications office who was still waiting, “Be nice to get that order already.”

There was a tense pause for a minute as the bridge crew waited for the order to fire. It all broke when the communications officer spoke up.

“Captain, Fleet Command has given the order to fire.”

“Kill track one zero one three with two Harpoon, keep an eye on the sky lieutenant, we’ll be getting visitors soon I hope” Lennox commanded immediately.

“The Seylosian fleet is firing missiles!” The radar officer onboard the INS Vanguard.

“Are we in range yet?” Captain Edward Declan asked.

“Some of the fleet is getting into range now sir.”

“Order the fleet to-” Declan started before catching the gaze of Admiral Howe, who had joined the attack onboard the Vanguard. “My apologies Admiral.”

Howe straightened his back and gave the order himself, much to the annoyance of the Captain, “Order the fleet to return fire immediately. What is the status of our air units?”

“Engaging with Seylosian contacts. It… seems they’ve already begun to pull back Admiral. Grand Admiral Cartwright has also sent a message that his air wings are on the way.” The flight commander replied, in slight confusion.

“What are they up to?” Declan asked, mostly to himself. Throw their planes at the enemy then retreat almost immediately after contact?

“Clearly they’ve already seen that the good Admiral has sent us reinforcements. We can’t let them make their escape. Order all air wings to pursue and begin immediate attacks on the Seylosian ships if they can find an opening.”

“Admiral…” Declan started, walking over to the radar screen of the radar operator who glanced up at him, also giving him a quizzical look, “They’ve barely launched any missiles against us at all. Certainly enough to be worried about but not enough to take down this fleet.”

Admiral Howe looked at him trying to hide his own confusion, “What are you saying?”

Declan stood up and faced the Admiral, “Admiral I believe they are trying to buy time. They clearly have reinforcements coming from the air. They are going to use the opportunity to have us try and expend our missiles.”

“Then all the more reason to push the assault now,” Howe said, his confusion giving way to confidence, “If we don’t deal with them now then wherever they get those reinforcements from will cause even more problems when they get here.”

“Sir I believe we need to wait for Grand-” Declan started.

“Captain, look after your ship, and I will look after this fleet.”

“Palmer please tell me you are going to have that thing ready to go when we get to the rendezvous.” Captain Alex Bolton asked, briefly turning his head back from the passenger seat of the Galahindan truck.

Being towed behind the truck was an anti-ship missile system they were trying to get delivered to the coast, hopefully right next to the unaware Anglian fleet.

“I’m working as fast as I can. It seems like our friends from Galahinda never even bothered to unbox the damn thing. I’m just trying to get the initial configuration of this thing setup.” The man hunched over a laptop connected to the system’s computer replied, incredibly annoyed.

“Is that a yes or not?” Bolton asked, slightly more aggressive with his tone. He wasn’t actually feeling particularly aggressive himself, but he knew Palmer always worked better under pressure.

“Yes? Maybe? I don’t know, I’m sitting here trying to read a manual and set up something the Galahindan should have done months ago.”

“Well you’ve got…” Bolton brought up his watch, “Ten minutes to get that sorted Palmer.”

“Ten minutes? I thought you said I had thirty?”

“No Palmer, you had thirty minutes, twenty minutes ago. Now you have ten. Get the damn thing working!”

The DAUFA pilot glanced at Bolton with concern on his face, “Is your man going to have that thing ready by the time we get there?”

“Oh sure, I’m sure he got most of it done before we actually left. He just works better under pressure.”

“I heard that Captain,” Bolton heard through his headset.

“Good, now you’ve got nine minutes!” Bolton gave the befuddle Galahindan pilot a thumbs up before activating trucks onboard radio, “Sierra Foxtrot One One this is Sierra Foxtrot One Four Actual, request status. Over”

There was a delay but then a message came back through the radio, “Copy Sierra Foxtrot One Four Actual, we’re on time. We’ll meet you at the rendezvous when you get there. Over”

“Copy, we’re going to need that backup when we get there. Over”

“We’ve got a large amount of inbound missiles and air contact inbound!” The radar operator aboard the Defiant.

“Jesus he actually went for it,” Commander O’Neill said, surprised.

“Never underestimate a man who has too much to prove,” Captain Walker replied, “Order all air wings to begin intercepting inbound anti ship missiles, we’ll let our destroyers handle these planes.”

O’Neill nodded and went over to the communications station to get Walkers order out there.

“Captain,” the radar operator started, “We’ve got a lot of extra missiles heading specifically for the Defiant. Most bearing ”

“O’Neill, get more units defending the Defiant, we’ve got a lot heading in. Get all our planes off the deck and in the air, even if they haven’t fully restocked,” Walker grabbed the main circuit phone off its holder and held it up to his mouth, “Missiles inbound starboard brace for shock, brace for shock.”

Though they expected anti-air fire from the Seylosians, the Anglians hadn’t expected quite this much. In the hopes that the Anglians, led by Howe of course, would try to throw their planes at the fleet, most of the fleet had shifted its missile complement from primarily anti-ship to anti-air. Admiral Forrest had known long before that they would have a large amount of reinforcements coming from the Seylosian mainland and she managed to spare no expense on that. With the Tagmatines and NAU First fleet between Seylos and the Dolch, everything was pulled from home and sent to Cascadia in the hopes they could overwhelm their opponent.

And so far everything was going the way they had hoped. At least for now.

Captain Lennox had a bad habit of hovering over whichever officer’s station he was talking to and was gazing in concern at the radar operator’s screen.

“That’s a lot of fucking missiles going towards the Defiant. I hope those pilots can get them.”

“We’ve got some of our own sir, one from the air bearing three one five and another from the enemy fleet bearing three two.”

Lennox turned around to address the bridge, “Deploy chaff, brace for shock!”

From both sides of the Ardent, chaff canisters were shot out blowing open and spreading their contents into the air. Both CIWS platforms on either side also began to swivel and level themselves and the incoming missiles. Each began to fire their chaingun as the missiles finally got into range. With planes busy trying to intercept other Anglian missiles, it looked like Ardent was on her own. Even though the port CIWS missed its target, the chaff seemed to confuse the missile enough as it had deviated course and slammed into the ocean only twenty or thirty meters away from the ship. On the starboard side however, the chaff didn’t work, but instead at the last moment the CIWS managed to intercept the missile causing it to explode relatively close to the Ardent.

Lennox instinctively ducked as the powerful sound of the CIWS and explosion went through the bridge. As he stood up he saw small shards of metal had actually made it to the ship and had stuck themselves in the bridge’s bulletproof windows.

He was terrified though as he looked out the starboard set of windows, completely ignoring another anti-air missile that launched from the Ardent’s deck. In the distance he could the damage from the attacks so far. Seven or eight trails of dark smoke leading up from the ocean, but most notably a glow and smoke billowing out out the aft of Defiant and from her flight deck.

Every conceivable alarm on board was going off on the bridge as Walker struggled to right himself. The Defiant had been hit twice, one of which he could see with his own eyes. A gouge in the flight deck extended for several meters, presumably coming from a missile fired from the air. They were lucky that for whatever reason it didn’t punch straight down. But he wasn’t sure where the other had hit until he noticed that Defiant wasn’t moving anymore.

“Captain!” he heard a voice from behind as O’Neill ran up to him, “Damage control called in using another circuit line. Aft missile hit near the propellers. It’s bad, they’re sealing off as much as they can but we’re taking on water. ”

“Jesus Christ, alright get to work helping with the damage control. I need to get in contact with Thunderchild.”

The truck pulled up to the small cliff near the Galahinda beach, where the helicopter taken by SF11 was already on the ground. Bolton hopped out of seat and onto the sand, hoping that the Anglian fleet was still unaware of their presence.

Another soldier ran up to him, the captain of the other special forces team and pointed out to the north, “Spotted two cars driving our way. Looks like we’re about to have company.”

“Alright, let’s get over to those rocks at the base and set up. Palmer, get this shit up and running now we’re about to have company!”

Palmer jumped out of the back of the truck and held up his laptop, “It’s already setup, but I haven’t got the order to fire yet.”

“What the hell’s the hold up Palmer, we’ve got Anglians heading our way!”

“They’re coordinating something I don’t know, look all I know is I shoot when they tell me to shoot.”

Bolton let out a groan, “Alright come on, stay close, and fire it the moment they tell you to. Alright?”

In total the Seylosians had about ten soldiers, though SF11 had called for reinforcements before Bolton and his team had shown up. Both fortunately and unfortunately SF11 had turned on a signal jammer they had in their helicopter so they had no idea when they were arriving. Suddenly, from just below where they had taken cover, rifle fire started going off, and the Seylosians responded back with fire of their own.

“See Captain, have faith. We’ve already damaged one of their carriers and several of their ships. We’ve got them on the run.”

“We’ve taken our own losses too Admiral,” Captain Declan replied, “We’ve lost over half our fighters in that reckless run and our reinforcements aren’t even here yet. We’ve expended most of our missiles, even if they decide to retreat we won’t be able to inflict enough damage on them to take Cascadia. The ground units needed us for this.”

“Captain Declan, I’ve had enough of your-” Admiral Howe started, his anger finally showing on his face.

“Admiral! Radar is picking up… several new air wings coming from the west and the south.”

“Admiral we don’t have the fighter power to take that kind of attack we need to retreat immediately,” Declan yelled, causing the entire bridge to go silent.

“How dare you speak to me this way. We hold our ground, and fight until Carwright’s fighters arrive to reinforce!”

An alarm went off on the radar operator’s control panel, “Admiral, Captain, I… I think… Enemy ships and fighters and launching missiles.”

Declan pushed the exasperated admiral out of his way and leaned down over the radar console, he spun around to his XO who was standing nearby, “Recall all fighters immediately, get a message to Ark Royal to do they same. I need to coordinate an immediate retreat with the rest of the fleet-”

“What the fuck do you think you’re doing Captain. I’m in command of this fleet.”

“No your insane political agenda might have just cost us this war, someone get him off my bridge.” Declan said, while a probably far too enthusiastic group of sailors grabbed the angry Admiral and dragged him off the bridge quite literally kicking and screaming. Whatever credibility the Admiral once had was lost as it became all too apparent they had walked straight into the Seylosian trap. A trap, Declan remembered, Admiral Howe had walked into off the coast of Anglia with no less the same adversary. Though last time instead of Gallambrian fighters, it was Anatean fighters that had sealed their retreat.

SF11 and 14 held their ground as Anglian soldiers poured fire on their position. Spread out amongst the rocks leading up to the anti-ship missiles they were hard to root out, though Bolton was hoping they’d get to firing the missiles before it became a worse problem.

“Finally!” Bolton heard Palmer yell out then suddenly hunch over his laptop while bullets were striking the rock above him.

Both groups fighting heard the roar of the anti ship missiles as each one fired off sequentially until all four were gone heading towards their targets. Declan could see the sky over the ocean as dozens of streaks were raining down from the sky towards Anglian positions, and even more coming up from the opposite end where the Seylosian fleet was. In a way it was almost beautiful.

The two sides kept trading fire until suddenly the Anglian stopped for a moment, causing Bolton to glance back over the horizon and see many columns of smoke slowly starting to rise into the air. Far more than were appearing from the Seylosian side. Then as if out of nowhere a deep resounding boom hit the shore, and from their position they could see some of the distant smoke columns almost ripple, though maybe Bolton could have been imagining it.

“Ceasefire!” Bolton called out as a quiet calm came over the beach. He broke it by calling out at the top of his voice, “Hey! As much as I’d like to keep shooting at each other until someone gets killed, maybe you should take a look out there!”

Silence for a moment, but no gunshots.

“What else is there to do?” a voice yelled back.

“You could always surrender?” Bolton yelled back. A bit cheeky, but it was true.

Bolton looked back at the other next him, “Hold?”

On the other side Anglian Major William Quintin looked back at his own people, “We can’t surrender can we?”

His second in command shrugged, “Even Admiral Cartwright thought this whole thing a fool's errand. You see that smoke out there don’t you. That fuckin explosion? You think the whole fleet is faffin about and lightin bonfires for us?”

Quintin tried his radio again to hear anything. Except now, it was clear. The Seylosians must have turned off their jamming.

“-Ark Royal has been lost, the fleet has suffered severe damage. With authority given to me under Grand Admiral Cartwright I’ve extended an offer of surrender to the Seylosian forces we have engaged. We have been guaranteed-”

He let in a sharp breath and closed his eyes. The rest of his soldiers looked at him.

“Major?” One of them asked.

He nodded, though more in recognition of the situation than anything, “We’ve lost boys. Admiral Howe’s fleet has surrendered.”

“Fuck.” One of the others said.

They sat in silence for a moment. If the fleet had surrendered, why fight on. No doubt Cartwright wouldn’t want them to keep fighting themselves. It was time to test if these Seylosians were as… nice as they had been reported to be. Quintin stood up.

No gunshot. He took a step out of the rock cover and walked onto the beach. From the other side he could see Bolton stand as well, moving his arm to calm his own people and took his own steps out. They met in the middle and looked at each other.

Quintin pulled out his pistol and handed it to Bolton, who at first had tensed up but then grabbed the gun, holding it in his hand. They both looked out to the sea to see the smoke rising from the ocean.

“You know,” Quintin said, pulling out a spare cigarette and lighting one. He offered one to Bolton. Normally he would have declined but it felt right. He took it and let Quintin light it, taking a drag and coughing as he did so. Quintin gave a short laugh before becoming somber again, “I never understood why we were here. You sound like southerners, you know, back home.”



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