MD #223: Golf-51 Recce
Golf-51 Recce
Summary: Orion sends one final raptor to Golf 51 before it gears up for the attack
Date: 17/11/2017
Related Logs: Golf51 Recon
Gloria Inez 
Recce Raptor
Unnamed planet currently being referred to as Golf51
04/06/2049

<FS3> Gloria rolls Ecm: Good Success.

It takes two hours with of jumping just to get to Golf-51's target system. It’s not close by any stretch and the fleet is unwilling to tip its hand to its position by jumping closer. It’s been weeks since the last abortive mission went out to this area and the fleet has missed six comms windows with the ground team by this point, the last transmission having cut off right in the middle. It probably didn't sound good to the people on the ground. But coming back out here, it’s a crap shoot. The ground team could be dead due to any number of factors and only one of them is due to being found and executed.

The jump clock in the Raptor counts to zero and the canopy flashes when the drive executes. When it fades they are staring down at the lush blue and green planet. The target zone is at sunset at the moment but at this range it’s impossible to make out details from this range except with the recon instruments. When the flight crew checks the time to the comms window, the nav computer calculates it based on stellar positioning and suddenly flashes up five seconds. Four. Three. Two. One. …And there's nothing. Plus five seconds. Plus ten.

Then Gloria's decryption gear lights up and five vertical lights all go green to indicate that the incoming communication is being verified as being exactly correct to function with the Raptor's gear - which should be impossible. No hacking involved, the whole thing just filters through the system and they can hear the radio channel come alive in their ears. But nobody is speaking. Gloria and Inez can hear a bird in the background. Some murmured voices and then someone else several feet from the receiver saying, "-it away. They're dead. We're.." and it fades out then back, "Pack it up. This is seven they've missed." Then there's the sound of muffling the speaker, like a hand is going over it. Then the channel goes quiet, allowing the Colonials to transmit back.

Soon as they jump in Gloria is hitting up the passive scanning systems to see what's about, and then starting the respool sequence for the FTL, just in case what's about isn't friendly. She's just about finished that as the comms form planet go quiet, so she gives Inez a brief nod, then starts the conversation. "Blue One, Blue One, Victor Two. Compliments of Dr Stone. Over." Keep it simple, keep it short.

<FS3> Gloria rolls Ecm: Good Success.

Keeping the controls steady for the flight and scanning visually through the canopy as well on the dradis, she gives an exhale at the lack of immediate contacts in the air. She listens to the radio over headset, and gives a smile to herself. At Gloria's nod she nods back and opens her mouth to speak, but she only closes her teeth to her lips for the 'V' when Gloria begins speaking, so she closes her upper lip over her teeth and scans. "you have the cameras recording?" she checks, more of a confirmation than a question.

There's silence on the other end for almost ten seconds after Gloria transmits. The voice that comes back sounds fairly surprised. "Copy your <word>, Victor Two!" There's even a little humour to the sound of his voice. "Victor Two, we were about to <two words> and continue mission. It has been some time <several words> us. We require a final answer right now: Will you be hitting our target as requested?" The guy on the other end is making a very concerted effort to try and speak the same language the Colonials are and the effort is marred with hesitation to how words are being used, but the intent is very real.

"Recording everything," Gloria confirms quickly, "FTL spooling back up. We've got three big targets out there who'll see is 1-5-0 seconds. Multiple smaller targets but I can't get a reliable fix on them yet." Since the pilot can hear the comms from the ground she doesn't give a running commentary on that, just gets on with sending Niko's message. "Blue One. Will comply your request. Time: local midnight," she gives the date in number of days from now. "Evac possible same time. Location: one zero zero kilometres east your position. Employ visual or IR signal light. Very short time window on evac. Request intel on air defence of target. Over."

"Copy on the contacts, Dodona," Inez replied quietly to ECO. She cranes her neck as she looks down the planet and listens, nose scrunching in concentration as she tries to decipher some of the words. "Dodona, can you patch me to camera? See if I can get a closer look while you chat."

The voice goes silent at THAT reply. Likely there's quite a bit of rapid discussion on the ground. "Victor Two, Blue One understands. Standby." There's a lot of cross-talk going on in the background, but its clear that whatever is being said is pretty important given how rapid fire it was. Seconds tick past. Ten. Twenty. Somewhere before thirty seconds, "Victor Two," the voice sounds like it has a renewed strength and energy. "Blue One will make contact one hundred kilometres on said date. This is <word> upon successful strike <word>. Blue One will require proof before <word> your evac." That seems to be very important, if not vital by the stressing of his voice. "Air Defences as follows: Twin heavy machine guns in the guard towers, quad-guns on mobile trucks roving the city, short range SAMs carried by guard patrols, medium range SAMs mounted across control buildings. Does your vehicle have visual on the prison?" Oddly, or maybe not, war seems to be something that translates very clean.

"Patching you through now," Gloria says to Inez with a grin before taking a glance at the clock to see how long they still have, and how long before they have FTL back. The silence before the reply is long enough that it starts to make her tense, but then her new best friend is back on comms and she's smiling again. "Blue One, Victor Two copies. Acquiring visual now but we're time limited. What am I looking for?" She presumes he's after something specific, or to make sure she sees something specific, then while she waits his reply, she starts playing with the camera zoom, trying to see if she can save time by pre-empting him and spotting it herself. As she does so she notes to Inez, "9-0 seconds until I'm pressing the magic button Sawyer."
Inez has partially disconnected.

"Thank you," Inez replies, and then… "Online and…" she trails off as the voice comes back on the line. She struggles again to understand the proof that he wants, and draws her brows. "If we have time, can we get a repeat what he wants for proof before evac?" she requests as she starts to zoom in. As he starts to list off the air defences, she begins to scan, searching for, and finding, one of the patrols with a flatbed with two turrets on the trailer. She zooms in as much as she can without losing resolution and then scans on, looking for one of the medium range SAMs.

"Understand limited time, Victor Two. Look for a building with a long shadow, over." As they look, the Raptor crew can easily find a couple if they zoom out. There's dozens of them throughout the city. "Those buildings, on the top of them are large white boxes. Those are SAM box launchers. They are IR and radar-guided medium range missiles." Yes, war is definitely their common language. "Expect heavy flak between 40 and 155 millimetre. Do NOT drop any ordnance except in the target zone. <word> that?"

Gloria nods once to Inez's remark regarding clarification, but waits until Blue One has finished their next transmission to avoid risk over transmitting over each other. "Blue One copy no ordnance except target zone. White boxes are SAMs. We have visual on them now, plotting locations." Or they will do anyway, once they're back and can analysis the footage. There's a quick flick of her eyes to the various clocks and then she's transmitting again, "Blue One, Query. Confirm nature of proof wanted before evac. Did not copy details. before words your evac."
You paged Dropkick with 'happy for me to call 30 seconds in my next pose?'

"Victor Two, picture or video proof will work. Whatever can be provided at time of evac." He doesn't try to use the same word again and seems to be referring to videos and pictures as if they were old technology. "Find a way to convince us you performed the strike." The guy continues, "Ah, Victor Two, my team lead has a request. Bring some food to evac? We are getting a bit peckish down here. Any further request for information, over?"

Inez nods as she hears the words better this time. She continues to scan, glancing up and around the space around them, looking off into the distance for a 'star' moving that shouldn't be, or anything else that would cut short their discussion. "Any idea of numbers on the patrols?" she suggests to Gloria as she picks up another flatbed, but hasn't found a medium installation, yet.

"Blue One," Gloria calls back, "3-0 seconds until we need to break. Copy on proof, copy on food. Any information on patrol numbers?" By that she means both how many patrols, and how many in each patrol, but given the time she's keeping her words as brief as possible. Then, glancing to Inez, "2-5 seconds."

"Negative, Victor Two. The prison holds roughly one hundred thousand people. We cannot estimate number of guards or patrols." The guy on the other side clicks off, then comes back a few seconds later, "Team Lead wants to know where you're from and why you are speaking Erfriki if you are not Erfriki, over."

Inez scans the edges of the complex, and then trains the camera towards the chosen evac point for the transport that will be coming in. "How many will they be needing us to pick up," she suddenly realizes they don't know how large a transport they need, and then she smiles. "We are Erfriki" she says, even though it's Gloria that will be telling them that.

"Copy Blue One," Gloria notes, hoping Inez isn't going to be too disappointed with that answer. The estimated number of prisoners is a little mind boggling, but she can't afford to dwell on that right now. "Planet of Origin: Kobol." There's no time to say more than that as her clock ticks to zero, "Victor Two out." Pushing the magic FTL button she waits until the raptor completes the jump before she turns to Inez. "Powering down recordings. As I understand it we're not picking up the prisoners, we can't. We're just picking up the team we just talked, and our own guys only. We can check with Scyth when we get back though."

Inez nods. "And how big is the team we just talked to?" she asks Gloria as they wait for the FTL to respool for their next jump.

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