Location: Telenovus system / Colony: Dresden / ONI observation station 661 / 0310 hours / September 22, 2541
“Jesus!!” The lieutenant exclaimed. “Computer, flash message to Dresden and Reach, Covenant CCS-Class Battlecruiser sighted bearing 5.8 km from station 661. Notify Dresden Orbital Command. All hands, this is Lieutenant O’Connor! Stand by to repel boarders!”
The Computer acted on O’Connor’s orders, and began sending procedures for the messages. The Doughnut’s rotation sped up significantly, and 5 main antennae extended from the outer edges of the station. The reactor whined significantly louder as it struggled to keep up with the power demand. The lights dimmed to allow more power for the message, and then the computer began flashing a warning message.
“WARNING! Energy Spikes detected on 4428965AG! Enemy ship charging weapons.”
By this time, all the crewmen understood the severity of the situation. Officers and marines scrambled over each other to grab weapons and strap on ballistics armor. Warning lights lit up as the station’s computer realized that it was under full attack. Sergeant Sherman, realizing that he could fully end up so much molecular dust rather than fighting the Covenant, exclaimed:
“There is no way in hell they’re taking down this station with me in it!” To punctuate that point, Sherman slapped a clip into one of the station’s MA5B assault rifles. With only 4 officers and 6 marines, Sherman knew as well as anyone that the 10 of them had no chance at fighting off a ship of Covenant forces. That is, if they didn’t just vaporize the Doughnut without a second thought.
“Computer! Initiate the Cole Protocol. Wipe all navigational databases. Ready the escape shuttle.” The lieutenant ordered.
The computer replied immediately: “Affirmative. All navigation data has been erased. Warming up shuttle now.”
It was at that moment that the Covenant ship loosed 5 of it’s 10 pulse laser turrets. Five bright red beams crossed the 4.9km of space in less than a thousandth of a second. When they hit, the beams were targeted at the Doughnut’s 5 communication antennae. The lasers melted clean through the antennae and continued off into space without slowing down. The computer, immediately realizing that damage had been done, reported appropriately.
“CAUTION! Main communications structures destroyed. Long and short range communications ability is at 0%. Armor in all sections holding at 100%. Beginning defensive measures.”
Despite being just an observation platform, the Doughnut was not defenseless. Hidden behind a handful of titanium panels on the outer surface of the station, it kept what Captain Evans referred to as “a security measure” Though far too small to hold a ship-sized MAC, Captain Evans had personally seen that 4 M68 gauss cannons were attached to the Doughnut’s superstructure. Capable of firing 25mm x 130 projectiles at hyper-sonic velocities, the cannons were a serious threat to small ships, such as boarding craft or Seraph fighters. The battlecruiser, however, would simply laugh at the cannons hitting its shields. The lieutenant knew this, however.
“Computer. Hold fire on 4428965AG… Re-designate target 4428965AG as CCS-001. Begin charging power for M68 A,B,C, and D. Fire only on Covenant dropships that are in range. Notify of any changes in power for CCS-001.”
“Affirmative. CCS-001 is charging pulse lasers again.” The computer responded.
“Very well computer. Sergeant Sherman! Get your squad set up by airlock 2. Computer, magnetically seal airlock 1. If plasma torpedoes are in firing position, notify immediately.” The lieutenant said.
“Come on your dumb Covenant basterds. I got a present for you…” Sherman said as he tapped the safety on his rifle.
“Pulse lasers won’t be able to take us out quickly, so we’ll only duck for the pod if we see plasma torpedoes. Computer, station status.” O’Connor said.
“Reactor running at 113% to charge guns and mag-seal doors. Armor in all sections at 100%. Station rpm at 5.0012. Standing by.”
Five purple shapes then appeared to separate from the battlecruiser and move towards the station. All of the men immediately knew what it meant. The Covenant wanted to capture, not destroy the Doughnut. The five dropships, no doubt brimming with enemy forces, would easily overwhelm the few defenders. That is, if all five ships made it to airlock 2.
“Computer. Permission to fire granted. Go Ahead.” The lieutenant said with a grim smile.
“Affirmative. Opening fire.” The computer said, robotic as always.
Ordinarily, the M68 rounds would have bounced harmlessly off of the dropship’s shields. However, these dropships were not expecting a communications satellite to be manned, much less armed. The panels moved backwards slowly with a loud, grinding noise. The computer manually targeted all 4 of the cannons onto separate dropships. Simultaneously, four bolts of lightning erupted from the surface of the Doughnut. One missed wide left of its target, instead hitting the battlecruiser, who’s shields flickered silver. Three other dropships, however, were not so fortunate. The M68’s depleted uranium rounds packed a serious punch. 415 pounds of solid uranium punched clean through the cockpits of the dropships. A bright flash and clouds of vapor was all that remained.
“Hot dam! That’s three of the bastards!” Sergeant Sherman exclaimed.
“Excellent. Prioritize final two dropships and fire at will computer.”
CCS-001 did not take kindly to its dropships being turned into dust. It immediately loosed its charged pulse lasers at the Doughnut, taking 2 of its gauss turrets offline as the energy beam sliced into the interior of the weapon’s pod. One of the beams, however, had the unfortunate effect of punching into the station’s reactor. The instrument panel lit up with all sorts of warnings, but then died for lack of power.
“Dammit! All hands, abandon ship! Sherman! Set the charges, we’re getting the hell out of here!” Lieutenant O’Connor bellowed out.
“With pleasure! Those Covenant basterds are gonna get one hell of a surprise” Sergeant Sherman responded. The sergeant had at his disposal 10 cubic inches of C-12 shaped charge, which would convert the station into pulp in about 2 seconds.
The rest of the men quickly hurried into the escape shuttle, which was a standard UNSC Bumblebee escape shuttle. Sergeant Sherman was the last on board, after setting a remote detonator on the explosives. As the next round of pulse lasers slammed into the station, the shuttle blasted away from the side of the Doughnut. The bumblebee raced towards Dresden as one of the dropships broke contact with the Doughnut and gave chase to the lifepod.
“This is going to be an interesting flight gentleman. We’ve got a war to fight once we’re on the ground.” O’Connor said.
The bumblebee raced towards the ground at hundreds of m/s.
The dropship was faster.
Praise the Lord