Turn 7 Prologue
The Zaqaru Carriers made their way through the warp gate into the infested Ytterbus territory alongside the other Imperial forces after the Haytham fleet had launched its initial volley. They had followed in the wake of the Sansone shield cruisers, carefully coordinating with the forces of their neighbour noble House. Guarded by Zaqaru Torpedo Missile Frigates, the Carriers ready their positions and await the expected command.
Grand Admiral Elos Rostami
LAUNCH THE FIGHTERS!
Spilling forth from the Carriers was the true strength of the Zaqaru Armada. Its numerous fighters, compromised of Interceptors and Bombers. Dozens of small and nimble spacecraft emerged from the large capital ships and with great speed thrust forward towards the battlefield in formation.
A downpour of fighters unleashed a rain of bullets, plasma and missiles upon the Vespids, after which they quickly withdrew, using hit and run tactics to sow confusion, discord and chaos. Little more is needed at first, as missiles and weapon fire from Zaqaru frigate and Sansone cruiser pave the way alongside the other Imperial forces to deeper systems with greater resistance.
When even the Zaqaru fleets lose the numerical advantage ot the Vespids in the systems beyond, they adapt with finesse and expertise. Striking in expert formations, splitting up in several engagements and luring the Vespids apart so that Sansone, Greenflame, Ytterbus, Jinks and Kelse forces can easily tear upon them.
The pilots of the Zaqaru are well trained and disciplined, dodging swarmers and engaging those using their maws upon the frigates of their Imperial colleagues. In the course of the combat, the tactics adapt to the hardy armour, a squadron’s gunfire being focused to a single point to strike through the thick armour of the Vespids. Yet not every squadron is as adaptable or as lucky.
Vespid maws crush unlucky or unskilled pilots in their fighters, tails crush through fighters cutting too close to the Vespids when turning, squadrons going too far in the dense swarms of Vespids are totally overwhelmed by numbers and find death by the troves. The Zaqaru Admirals leading the fleets do not bat an eye at the many deaths, all calculated in their strategies, while both Admiral and pilot know the life was given in service to the glory of Zaqaru.
Not calculated into the strategies is the new tactic employed by the Vespides, with their organic missile pods filled with explosions and corrosions, their numbers used to overwhelm the Imperial defenses. In the new stratagem formed, Grand Admiral Elos Rostami takes it upon himself to set up a coordination team between the different forces of the different Houses and get the data of the various fronts in sync. While he played no role in coming up with the new stratagem, thanks to his communication efforts the new stratagem was more quickly adapted by the various forces across the star cluster.
Especially the Zaqaru fighters guided by fire control modules make great use to blast away the pod shoals, though they disappear from the front lines when a nebula of acid is formed in the final assault between Vespid and Imperial forces. Hiding in Carrier bays or behind the heavy spacecraft of Sansone, Greenflame or the Liness Coalition, they reappear for the final clash, fighting swarmers and queens. An elite force of interceptors and bombers even fly towards the Leviathan to destroy the pod shoals.
As the Leviathan marches through Sansone shield cruisers, tearing through a Zaqaru carrier, costing the lives of many, before rampaging onwards to a Kelse battleship, in its wake swarmers tear through frigates, making their way to a Zaqaru carrier and a command ship of one of the other noble Houses. As two squadrons of resupplied interceptors launch from the Zaqaru carrier, they receive a transmission from one of two interceptors chasing the swarmers. These two interceptors dive with incredible agility around the swarmers, dodging their maws with ease as they pelt them with gun bullets. They manage to blind one swarmer, which leaves its target frigate alone and writhes in agony and rage, before flying closer to the Carrier.
“I am Wing Commander Hydra and assuming command. Follow my lead.” As the other interceptor makes its way to dock, the interceptor flies towards the two squadrons. Briefly the two squadron leaders exchange a message. “Who is Hydra?” “The son of a high noble and an elite pilot.” The last one quickly responds. “Acknowledged Commander Hydra. Following your lead.” As the interceptor turns around, the two squadrons move to fly alongside. “Let’s show these Vespid swarmers how to really tear things up. Assume claw formation!” The two squadrons fly around Hydra, forming an X, with each interceptor in a branch in a more forward position than a central interceptor.
The formation allows the shots fired simultaneously by the interceptors to hit at the same time at the same location, focusing fire to burst through the thick hide of the blinded Vespid swarmer wracking about. Its movements send it spinning, but no life remains as the interceptors finish their assault run. Swiftly, they turn to the next swarmer to repeat the tactic. After two swarmers, the formation breaks as the swarmers attempt to bite through the fighters. As the fighters distract them from the frigates they were assaulting, the swarmers soon find them caught in the gunfire and missiles shooting from their previous targets.
When in the distance the Leviathan’s lifespan ends by the other forces and the swarmers regress in intelligence, the squadron led by Hydra quickly finishes off the swarmers in their vicinity, moving onwards to aid the other forces striking down the remnants. Behind them they leave the command ship, not knowing whose lives they may have saved as the Imperial forces achieve victory in battle.