Klingseis Chapter Twelve
The war game isn’t supposed to begin until tomorrow morning.
Something doesn’t feel right about this. I reach for the comm panel on the wall to broadcast my voice throughout pilot country.
“All pilots to their ships. I repeat, all pilots to their ships.”
I look over at Richter to find him looking hopeful.
“Don’t even think about it, you’re still grounded. But you can make yourself useful and help those who are flying suit up. I’ll be in shortly.”
I signal the hangar deck as he leaves. Some specialist with a name that is familiar but a face I can’t picture, answers the comm.
“Specialist, tell Chief Yogusashi to get my birds ready to go. Full armament for the heavies, keep Laramie light.”
The bulky missiles and protruding plasma cannons make changing directions a real bitch for the smaller fighters. I don’t know if this is part of the simulation, or not, but I can’t afford to have all my birds sluggish. Leave the high-tech artillery for the Cruisers and bombers. All I need is a little speed and a gun or two.
The comm panel illuminates, indicating an incoming message. I’m sure it’s the XO making sure I’m on the ball. Briggs is a good first officer, always ensuring the Commander’s ship is fine-tuned. I open the channel and don’t even wait to hear from the other end.
“Lieutenant Klingseis here, the birds are being prepped and my pilots are ready to go, sir.”
Just as I expected, the slightly-scratchy voice of the Lieutenant Commander projects through the small speakers.
“Good, godspeed. XO out.”
If the war games are starting earlier than Linco said, I wonder what else he kept from us.
At this point, we won’t find out what is going on until everyone is already locked in their cockpits. When the ship goes to battle conditions, you don’t sit around waiting to get briefed, you prepare for Hell and hope you brought enough guns.
The flight deck is now in a fit of activity with techs frantically fueling up planes and loading armaments. A loud bang signals the activation of the ventilation system as the smell of fuel becomes overpowering.
I turn and jog back toward the locker room to suit up with the rest. I’ll be taking Richter’s place in Laramie. The initial coldness in my toes from the adrenaline wanes with each step. We’ve trained plenty of blind launches, but this doesn’t feel like a simple training mission.