The klaxons rang across the Warrior. "General Quarters, General Quarters, General Quarters!"

"This is your Commodore speaking. We have come under attack from a (simulated) New Republic force! Pilots, get to your ships, everyone else to your battle stations!"

RA Pete Mitchell stood on the bridge of the Warrior looking out the transparisteel windows at the NR fleet still coming out of hyperspace. He was still breathing hard from sprinting from his office to the bridge, not to mention the adrenaline. "Good thing I tested the communications security yesterday..." He began pondering strategy, and then wondering if he would be able to join his pilots in his Defender. For now, he decided, he should wait and see how the battle develops, but just to be ready, he engaged the radio and called down to the hangar, "Quartermaster, make sure my TIE is armed and ready to go. Please load (simulated) advanced concussion missiles, a decoy beam, and chaff."

So it has all begun, his first true test as a Commodore...

Back to the loudspeaker and radio now that ships were pouring out of the hangar bays. "Warriors, a true test is upon us. This is what we train for! When you are out there and you think you can't give any more, think of your shipmates and how they are going to keep going to make sure you make it and finish the mission. Give it your all, even when you're all out. Be the hero, but dying for your ship alone is not enough. Our job is not to die for our ship, it is to make those poor dumb bastards die for theirs!"

RA Mitchell watched the battle develop from the bridge. There were still some alphabet fighters emerging from hyperspace about 10 clicks away. Then a Mon Cal Cruiser showed up.

"MC80 emerging from hyperspace at 12 clicks, Admiral," a technician called out.

"Point our nose at them, but do not close range at this point" Mitchell called to the helmsman. "GN Frown, have Sigma attack the Mon Cal. I want Sin to attack all B-Wings and Y-Wings and keep them out of warhead range. Kappa will fly Superiority, and keep Theta near the ship for anything that falls through the cracks."

"Roger, I'm on it." Replied Frown.

As the fighters closed with one another, Mitchell pondered the strategy of the NR task force. The formation they were closing in on was on the surface the typical rebel formations, but there was something a bit odd. It just seemed, so rigid, so... Imperial! "XO, you take the comm. I'm headed to my fighter. This battle will be won fighter to fighter, and I am joining in the fun! In the meantime, have the Harpax turn on its gravity wells and send Psi to defend it. I want to settle this now and not have to chase them around the region."

With that, Mitchell about faced and took off at a brisk pace toward the turbolift. He stopped by his quarters, donned his flight suit, and began running to the hangar bay with a huge grin on his face. In the hangar bay, he greeted the deck officer with a quick salute, which he returned. The deck officer knew what to do, and Mitchell's TIE Defender was ready to go.

Just then, the ship shuttered, but not too much. Mitchell thought, "Looks like some of them managed to launch torpedoes. Word should be out that this is an exercise, though." He set off at a run to his fighter.

Mitchell jumped in, closed the hatch, and punched out of the hangar.

As he exited the hangar, the initial waves of fighters had merged. Sin's warheads had taken many of the Y-wings and B-wings out, and the fur ball had formed. The "killed" fighters were strewn across the space between the capital ships, sitting lifeless.

Mitchell switched his radio to address the whole fleet, "Even though this is an exercise, give it all you've got! I am not going to listen to Pellaeon brag in the cantina. On a quick safety, note, though make sure you don't collide with the dead ships! XO, activate the tractor beams to bring our fallen heroes back."

Mitchell finally got into the fight and decided he was best off flying superiority as well. He rolled, and pulled back hard, his fighter letting him feel the G's slightly instead of letting them kill him. He got behind an A-wing and fired all his linked lasers at it to knock it out of the fight. Just as he was enjoying satisfaction of the kill and maneuvering behind an X-Wing, he heard the voice of his XO over the radio, "More capital ships emerging from hyperspace! It's another MC80, 3 lights, 4 frigates, and 4 dreadnaughts."

Mitchell thought, "Where the heck did the command staff get all these? And there has to be at least double this, with a group to attack the Hammer!"

Mitchell then activated his radio, "Get the interceptors and LN's back in the hangar immediately! Scatter the fleet, and join up at rendezvous 3C! Keep the Harpax back until the last minute to catch any stragglers and delay the rebels! We will live to fight another day and take these guys on our terms!"

Everyone knew what to do. Sigma fired one last salvo at the first MC80 and took out a couple engines. The rest of the squads redoubled their effort and took out nearly the entire first wave of fighters, but there was another two wings on their way. The Warrior hypered out followed by the support ships, and finally the Harpax.

"Okay boys, time to go!" Mitchell called out.

Almost in unison, all the TIE Defenders, TIE Advances, Missile Boats, and Gunboats turned, punched their engines and opened up some space between them and the incoming wave of fighters. A few seconds later, they all shot into hyperspace.

In the loneliness of hyperspace, Mitchell was pondering the next steps.

Two jumps later, Mitchell emerged from hyperspace at the Warrior, right behind Kappa squadron. He waited his turn to dock, and then headed to his quarters. He deposited his flight helmet on his bunk, splashed some water on his face and looked in the mirror. He really miscalculated on this one, but the dedication and skill of his fleet minimized the cost. Without changing out of his flight suit, he left and headed for the war room, just behind the bridge.

As he arrived, he saw COL Plif, CM Hav Antiel, and COL Mark Schueler already there. RA Mitchell saluted. "Where's Lanil?"

Plif replied, "He's departed for the Phoenix. He said he left a note on your desk."

"I didn't even look at it since getting back. This just happened?"


"What a loss... I hope he is okay... Call Len up here, he can join us. Now, let's talk strategy from here."

CM Antiel chimed in, "Well the 'enemy' fleet somehow outnumbers us, but only slightly. If we can dictate the terms of the engagement, we could come out on top."

"First we have to find them," added COL Schueler.

"I have an idea!" remarked COL Len Eode, right as he strode in the door. "If the 'rebels' are acting a little more like we do, we can counter by acting like rebels. Hit and fade tactics, but since our fleet is almost the same size, we can hit them repeatedly and quickly to overwhelm them!"

"I like it," remarked Mitchell.

"I've got another idea..." Antiel seemed a little timid.

"Go for it."

"Well, if we are dictating the terms of the engagements, and can get out quickly, I believe I could hotwire the turbolasers on one side of the ship to send their power to the other. It takes some time, but we could double the firepower we bring to bear on the enemy ships. We'd just have to be careful not to expose the other flank because I couldn't switch it back in time."

Admiral Mitchell smiled. "That is just crazy enough to work. While we are at it, we could also load up some fighters with rockets and torpedoes and fire them directly from the hangar. We could destroy the smaller ships in a minute or two, then get out. Hav, go ahead and get started with hotwiring our frigates. Mark, coordinate the search to find the fleet. Everyone else, get some rest for the fight to come. Here we go!"