Meleager: Hangar, CIC, Surrounding Space, Hangar
Chief Belar--clearly having everyone look towards him for what little direction they needed and in a position with a view of the entire deck--has just finished seating Specialist Goshan (she was wobbling a little) when he hears a cultured Caprican accent from over his shoulder. "Hello. Doctor Jared Meas, reporting for duty or something like that." The rather disheveled-looking civilian standing behind Belar offers his hand; his clothes may have once been of quite high quality, but they have clearly been through Hell since. "I've been told a Mister Fenks would probably want to have a word with me, but before that....Who do I have to...adulate here to get a warm shower and some clean sheets?"
Goshan leans just far enough around her Chief to get a look at the voice. After several seconds looking at him, she straightens back out, then starts twitching for several seconds before finally giving in and just giggling madly. "You-you-you-are-Jared Meas?!" She manages to stammer out between her whole-hearted giggles. It is clear to Meas that she finds him and--by extension--his entire situation completely uproarious. Goshan struggles to contain her giggling enough to speak for several more seconds, then stammers some more commentary when she succeeds. "The-same-Jared-Meas-whose-a-ri-ri-rich-Ph.D.-turned-Mentalist?"
As she said this, Meas became aware that the hangar was populated with an excessive number of heavily-armed and fairly-armored military personnel in what even he could only call "good fighting positions"...with several outright machine guns (Having been around the VP's EPD Agents, he could at least tell that much of a difference...well, and thanks to pop culture.) and enough ammunition and other weapons to take--and probably hold for a little while--one of the smaller, less militarized Colonies like Aerilon or Sagittaron.
And everyone with a gun in the hangar--which, Meas now notice upon further momentary inspection, uncluded pretty much everyone except him, the young woman laughing at him, and several people now rushing out of the hangar with the Vice President and her rather worse-the-wear agents--all looked 'keyed up'.
Julie quickly admitted Thompson into the Raptor and then even more rapidly shut the hatch behind him before she began giving him her usual no-nonsense high-speed SitRep. "They pulled the outer cordon for several minutes, but no one came within ten meters of this Raptor; normally they wouldn't venture within fifteen. When the outer cordon came back, the MAs deployed--with serious heavy weaponry; they somehow have smartguns--behind anti-boarding barriers. They look ready to give any boarders or threats serious Hell. Package is, of course, secure. So...anything interesting happen?" Dragon and Archer just shook their heads and looked expectantly at him. It was clear that while they had both stayed alert, they were bored.
As Fuller exited the Raptor, he noticed that all 80 of the MAs were deployed...behind portable anti-boarding barriers...with machine guns...and enough additional weaponry and ammunition to probably give the entire PDF of Aerilon a good run for their money in holding their planet. Plus they looked rather 'keyed-up'. Calm...but still 'keyed up'. He also noticed that every member of the Deck Gang--including Chief Belar--had a sidearm (aside from Specialist Goshan, who should still be in the Infirmary), and what appeared to be Section Leads and Seconds (from both their rank and how their Sections were looking to them for leadership) had slung carbines. They were moving smoothly, but still were apprehensive...and the severely wounded personnel coming off his Raptor was not helping.
Sergeant Adama stayed tight on Fuller's heels as both barely managed to dodge the veritable 'horde' of medical personnel as they secured the Vice President and the three wounded Agents. Adama seemed to ignore Fuller's orders for several seconds as he rapidly spoke into his mike, then spoke to his Platoon Leader. "Taken care of, Sir. Sergeant Iversion--the most experienced we have in close protection--will take Blue Squad under Corporal R. Kennyson to cover the Veep; they'll be back-stopped by Corporal Vickers and Orange Squad. Between Iversion, Kennyson and her merciless minions, and Vickers and her sneaky bastards, the Veep is covered. As for Aurora, Sir, we have two options: Our first option is Corporal Aramaki, who is good with people--especially ones scared or in pain--and has a razor-sharp mind oriented towards the intel side of 'the house', with Yellow Squad, his tactically flexible subordinates; together, they are 'utility generalists', very good at any specific tasks, masters of none...but they also can adapt their tactical approach faster than anyone else, even either Kennyson. The other option is Corporal Clarence, a 'hardass bitch of an Aquarian Marine'--it's how she describes herself--who is our best close-quarters combatant--in the Platoon--by far; her Red Squad very much follows her lead tactically--although they are notably far warmer people socially--and are masters of brutal, no-notice close-quarters fights to the death...they don't quit, retreat, or leave any survivors when dealing with threats." Adama paused as he listened to his radio, and Lifts One and Two opened to reveal the other two Raptors.
As soon as the inner Hangar blast door opened--even before the Deck Gang could get to the Raptors--both Raptors' hatches popped open and disgorged Sergeant Iversion accompanied by the four mentioned squads at a full-on sprint. Iversion, Blue Squad, and Orange Squad peeled off and managed to surround the VP (and her agents) as they were evacuated at high speeds. MA2 Ramess nodded and pointed, and a five-man MA fire team (with their machine gun, shotguns, and about a third of the ammunition off the nearest cart) managed to get ahead of the Medical team and start clearing the way/sweeping for threats. Yellow and Red Squad stopped outside of hearing distance (in a busy hangar, anyway) at Adama's gesture, and spread out enough to cover against threats that could see the hatch to Raptor 006.
"I honestly can't make the call on that one, Sir. Aurora will be safe with Corporal Aramaki and Yellow--and he's a fairly stabilizing/comforting presence, good with handling traumatized people--but if you are seriously worried about possible threats, Corporal Clarence and Red will insure that hostiles will have to kill all four of them to get to Aurora. Iversion, R. Kennyson, and Blue together are the best combination we have for Close Protection/Bodyguard work; we just got lucky Orange happened to dive into Blue's Raptor. With Vickers' expertise in stealth, defeating security, and general 'subterfuge', the V-P is covered as best we could. It does not look like the shuttle with Staff, Sergeant Velern, Indigo and Violet Squads, all the other Corpsmen we took over there, and three scared-out-of-their-wits rather traumatized teenage girls will manage to get down here for another fifteen minutes minimum; possibly even as long as thirty minutes." Adama looked expectantly at Fuller; his voice had been pitched to carry only to Fuller's ears.
In the CIC, Major Deering finally heard the two phrases she had been waiting for almost simultaneously.
"Sir, all our planes and transports are down on the deck and secured for Jump." The PO3 working Flight Control sounded quite relieved, and Deering couldn't blame him.
"Sir, Jump is plotted. Ready to-" The officer at Navigation was cut off by Deering's sharp commands.
"NAV, Execute Immediate Hot Drop Combat Jump as previously specified NOW." The officer didn't even both answering--Major Deering looked like she wanted results, and she had said "Combat Conn"--as he turned the key--already seated in its slot contrary to most peacetime regulations on FTL Jumps--that freed the already spun-up FTL Drive to Jump the ship...with absolutely no warning.
Jump Nausea washed over the entire ship.
Things were silent for the five seconds it takes the 'static' from Jumps to clear.
Then All Hell broke loose in the CIC as the DRADIS registered a large hostile contact--at least twice the size of Meleager--at a range of exactly one thousand, two hundred and three meters from Meleager. To make matters worse, Galactica was fifteen minutes' flight-time away, the asteroid was five kilometers away (they were, luckily, dead in space thanks to a luckily happenstance of heading and the quick action of those manning Helm), and what looked like 70 Cylon fighters were halfway between Meleager and Galactica...four of which were giving off radiological readings. Deering, mid-sip of her third cup of orange juice when they Jumped, spit it out and started barking orders.
"Weapons Free, everything fire on that contact. Deck-Launch our planes now to cover us. Helm, Retro Thrusters Burn-Positive One-Zero-Zero Percent Throttles. TAC, Give that ship three full 'broadsides', then Helm, bring us about and burn hard for Galactica. NAV-" She was cut off by one of the techs at Tracking.
"RADIOLOGICAL ALARM! Four Contacts, Bearing Zero-Nine-Zero-carom-Zero-Zero-Two. Estimated yield is high-kiloton range." The tech was--understandably--quite nervous.
"Sound 'Brace For Contact'! TAC, the minute anything comes at us, you put everything for defense. And TAC...once we clear three klicks from that bastard, I want you to put both of our ready nukes into the bastard." As she spoke, she nodded to the Tactical Officer, and they both turned their Nuclear Release Keys. "Fire at will."
The contact was--despite being run by a Hybrid--far more surprised than Meleager. Which is perhaps why it did nothing for several seconds as it attempted to grasp what had just happened. Unfortunately, Meleager was not waiting...there was a war on, and the CDF wasn't trained to be polite, but to kill Toasters with notable prejudice.
Sternjekcz's authorization was all the 19 Vipers on her Flight Deck needed. Releasing their clamps, they all briefly fired their ventral thrusters, then kicked their main engines into Maximum Military Power. If their had been noise in the vacuum of space, they would have 'gone screaming' away from Meleager, orienting not towards the large ship--that was Old Mel's fight--but towards the 70 contacts assumed to be Cylon planes. As her planes launched at their maximum power, Meleager's entire complement of weaponry spoke in anger against the enemy they were created to destroy for the first time in forty years.
The sudden, disorienting 'stretching' of an FTL Jump hit the Hangar...followed momentarily by the varying degrees of nausea (depending on the person and their experience Jumping). Goshan simply smiled, the drugs rendering her effectively immune to either problem. She stopped smiling fifteen seconds later when the entire ship rang as every main battery, point defense turret, and both missile launchers went into continuous rapid fire and an announcement echoed throughout the entire ship in time with an atonal, shrilling alarm no member of the Colonial Defense Forces ever wanted to hear.
"ALL HANDS BRACE FOR CONTACT! SAY AGAIN, ALL HANDS BRACE FOR CONTACT! HOSTILE CONTACT AT POINT-BLANK-RANGE! NUCLEAR RELEASE IS GRANTED, NUCLEAR DEPLOYMENT IS AUTHORIZED, NUCLEAR STATUS IS YANKEE!" The voice announcing this--although definitely not the Skipper--sounded very worried. As the same announcement was echoing from the speakers carrying the various wireless channels the Deck Crew monitored, it was clear that this was going out to everyone.
Easy to understand when you're announcing to all of your shipmates--and anyone listening to your wireless channels--that you're expecting to get nuked, hostiles are within three kilometers of your ship, and your Skipper has nuclear missiles hot, armed, loaded in the tubes, and clearly intends to start shooting them right back herself.