Fifteen-year-old Ensign Sandi O'Donald sat in her chair watching the stars flash by on the screen. Looking around, she saw no one was paying attention and as bored as she was she reached down and pulled her data pad up into her hands and started reading the latest book on how to write a romance novel from author Cindy Canter of Centauri Prime. She was so engrossed in the book that she didn't see the warning on her sensor board of the closing of the T'Lari heavy cruiser. Yawning she looked around the room and saw everyone was still working and then the flashing light caught her eyes. Dropping the pad, she activated the scanners and the saw the twelve million ton cruiser was less than fifty miles behind the Wishbone's engines. Turning in her chair, she said, "Sir, sensors have a T'Lari heavy cruiser fifty miles behind us and closing fast."
Captain William Anderson dropped his coffee cup and swung his chair around to look at the young girl. "How the hell did they get that close?" He then saw the data pad on the floor by her feet. "You were fucken reading again, weren't you?"
Sandy went white as she realized that she might have just killed them all, and tried to apologies to him, "Sir, I'm so..."
William glared at the child as she tried to apologies, and said, "You're fucken relieved, and if we survive. I will file charges against you, now get off my deck, and report to your quarters."
Sandy scooped up her datapad, turned, and fled the deck, her tears dripping down her face. Jumping into the nearest transport tube, she shot to the deck with her quarters on it.
Captain Anderson turned and looked around at the crew who was suddenly working like crazy. Flipping the intercom on, he said, "This is the captain, all hands man your battle stations, enemy cruiser fifty miles behind us and closing. We are turning hard to port, open fire when your weapons bear."
Around the ship, the eight hundred-person crew rushed to their battle stations, gathering up their personal weapons and bringing the weapons online. The little destroyer started bringing her weapons online as the cruiser suddenly opened fire, her weapons hitting her engines and knocking half of them off line. With her speed drastically reduced, she whipped around and unleashed her main batteries and then her missiles, the weapons fire hit the shields followed by the fifteen 500k ton nuclear weapons that hit the shields of the enemy cruiser, and they crashed down. Then her lasers opened up again, and they start tearing into the cruisers bow and bridge sections.
The enemies return fire ripped the destroyer's shields apart like tissue paper and the hits destroyed her engines, bringing her to a dead stop right in front of the cruiser.
Aboard the T'Lari cruiser, Vargin Captain T'Lrikin watched the human ship get closer. It was as if her sensors were not working. "Bring all weapons online, we will target their engines and destroy them. Once they are down, we will board and eat well. Have all warriors ready to board but the ships support crew."
Suddenly, the weapons officer shouted out, "Sir the human ship is turning."
T'Lrikin looked back up at the screen, and said, "Open fire now!" The weapons opened up and the destroyer's engines exploded from the damage, but she was still moving. "Hit her engines again." Then the human opened fire and his shields went down and then more weapons fire crossed his, and he saw the destroyer come to a dead stop. Then his bridge explodes under a direct hit. The hit entered the bridge and traveled all the way down the ship, exploding the rooms to space and killing the crew as it went. With no hand at the helm, the ship plowed into the Federations cruiser and cut her almost in half.
Commander Mike Garret was sitting in the officer's mess having a later lunch when the ship came to general quarters. Dropping his napkin, he jumped up and was out the door before the napkin hit the plate. On the overhead speaker, he heard the captains voice, "This is the captain; all hands man your battle stations enemy cruiser fifty miles behind us. Hard port, open fire when she is insight," Jumping into the transport tube, he said, "Bridge."
The Wishbone lurched as her engines took another hit and the power faltered. Captain Anderson watched his hits devastate the cruisers front half, and then his ship lurched as the power died. When it came up again he saw the cruiser less than mile away heading right for his ship. "All hands brace for impact, Marines prepare to repel boarders, all crew prepare..." William went flying as the cruiser rammed his ship; he flew across the bridge and smashed into the wall. He felt his arm snap as he hit and lay there for a second until his second in command came over and helped him to his feet.
Commander Mike Garret stepped out on the bridge deck, the ship lurched as the ship was hit and he flew into the wall across from him. Shaking his head, he stood up, and started running towards the bridge. Reaching the door, he rushed onto the bridge and saw the crew getting up and the captain laying on the deck. Going over to him, he helped him up, as he asked, "Sir, are you ok?"
Grimacing in pain, he said, "Yes, I am Mike; now get me a damage report."
Lieutenant Terry Hando sat in her chair and brought up her control board, and said, "I'm on it sir." On the board, the damage came up, and it's bad, the ship is almost cut in half. "Sir, we were rammed just in front of medical and behind the boat bay. Damage to compartments seventy to ninety-one on all decks, T'Lari are boarding in the damaged compartments. The hull force fields have sealed the ships together preventing the atmosphere from escaping. Engines are offline, weapons off line, limited sensors."
"Damn that girl she has gotten us all killed." Walking over to the intercom, he flipped it back on. "All hands, repel boarders, form hunter killer groups and kill the enemy when you find them. Remember they will give you no quarter, so do not offer any. That is all." Turning to his second in command, he said, "Mike, we need weapons, start issuing them out."
"Aye, Aye, Sir," Mike replied, as he walked over to the wall. He opened the weapons locker and started passing out plasma pistols and power magazines to all the bridge crew. "These are the new Mark 5 plasma pistol they have twenty shots before you need to replace the power supply. There are three power clips each." Mike passed the ten pistols out to the bridge crew and handed one to the captain as he walked up. "Here you go sir." Handing him the pistol and three clips, he continued, "Do we have a chance sir? And Sir, what girl got us killed?"
"Thanks Mike and I am not sure, but we will make them regret it if we don't. And Ensign O'Donald, she was reading a book and not paying attention to her job." Turning to his crew, he said, "We will work in groups of six. Mike, take five of them and let's go, you take starboard, we will get port."
Mike picked out five of the crew and headed out the starboard bridge door while William took his five and heads out the port doors. Rushing down the halls, they ran past the crew setting up choke points to stop the invaders. They came to a damaged section of the ship, and they saw the shimmering force shield covering an opening to space. Backing up twenty feet, they stepped into the transport tube, and dropped several decks and started inching towards sounds of laser fire. Coming up behind the T'Lari firing on some marines, they noticed one was eating a bloody arm ripped from the corpse by its feet. Taking aim, Mike fired and the plasma round hit the T'Lari in the back of the head, which exploded like a rotten melon. The rest of his men rushed around the corner and opened fire and the remaining four T'Lari fell to the deck dead.
Suddenly, a voice shouted out, "Who's out there? Come forward and identify yourself or be fired upon."
"This is the captain. What's your damages?"
"Captain this is Corporal Hawk, I have three marines with me, and two navy."
"Ok we are coming around, don't shoot us."
"No Sir, I wouldn't do that."
Leading his men and woman down the hall, he linked up with the Marines and two navy personal. Coming to a halt, he saw Ensign O'Donald standing there with a laser rifle in her arms. "Ensign what are you doing here?"
Sandy looked at the angry face of the captain, and replied, "Sir, I am trying to make up for my mistake."
With a snarl, he responded, "You have a long way to go for that. A lot of good men and woman are dead because of you."
With a tear running down from her left eye, she told him, "I know that, Sir, this is all I can do for now. If you want me dead let them do it."
Nodding at her, he said, "If they don't kill you, expect to be tried." Looking at the people with him, he said, "let's go and take our ship back." Moving down the hallway, they came to the open boat bay doors, peeking around the corner, he saw about hundred T'Lari getting ready to spread out in the ship. More were climbing down from a sixty-foot tear in the side of the enemy cruiser. Looking around he saw the power supply for the bay force shields. Looking back at the people with him, he said, "We need to take out the force shield, if it was to go down it should suck all the air out of the bay and the cruiser. So we are going to spread out and engage them, but I need a volunteer to take the shields down."
Sandy saw him looking at him as he said volunteer, and she blurted out, "I will do it, Sir."
With an evil grin, he said, "Ok, O'Donald, don't fail me again?"
Sandy gulped and looked at him, and replied, "I won't, Sir."
.... There is more of this story ...