Storm Clouds – Part 4

Storm Clouds

by AJ Marks

Part 4: Decisions

Phantom looked down as two centurions entered the room once more. Probably with information concerning the Colonial fleet.

“Speak,” he said to them.

“By your command,” the centurion said. “A basestar commander has spotted a colonial viper in the system.”

“Which basestar?”

“Number eight,” the centurion said, as Phantom looked over at the starmap, noticing where eight was.

“According to the plan,” Phantom said. “Inform basestars six and nine to close in. The commander of the Colonial fleet will not risk combat and move on as planned. The two basestars will overwhelm the Colonial fleet destroying it.”

“By your command,” the centurion said, turning around and heading away to carry out the orders.

Phantom felt pleased with himself. He had managed the destruction of this Colonial fleet with ease so far. Studying human patterns gave him the advantage over them. They were predictable and wondered how his predecessors ever failed. Glory was his.


Tagget watched Ben and Issac sit down, from their body language he knew something happened, but what he had no idea. So he waited, wanting to hear it all.

“Well, the system has a lot of planet, and I even found one that has life,” Ben said, causing Tagget to straighten with some hope. “However,” ben said, indicating there was more, “I saw a basestar in orbit around it.”

Tagget sat back in shock at the news. The news was both great, and tremendously terrible. He could imagine no worse news, unless it was there was no planet that supported life. He now face an impossible decision.

“Anything else?” Tagget asked.

“No sir, we left, not sure if they saw us or not,” Ben said.

Tagget nodded, finally coming up with a decision. “That will be all,” he told them watching as they left the room. He could almost weep at the cruel fate of the universe. Staring at the table he pondered their situation. Try for another system, but no guarantee that neither a planet supporting life was there, or that another Cylon basestar could be waiting for them.

He glanced up at the door closing and Zaga sat down, waiting in silence.

“Cylons, and a planet which supports life,” Tagget finally said, watching Zaga as he absorbed that news.

“No good choices,” Zaga finally said, drumming his fingers on the table.

“No,” Tagget said finally coming up with a decision. “Have all captains fly over to the Sunflare.”

“Are you sure?”

“Yes, they need to be informed, and they will have a vote in the decision,” Tagget said. This decision effected every man, woman and child in the fleet, for better or worse.


Sheba continued further on, seeing the system start to appear on her scanners. The flight out had been uneventful. Coral flying along beside her, and practicing the hand signals everyone learned for patrols. One could never be sure when you might have to do this. Each patrol practiced it in case something happened.

She looked over the scanner, as the system came up, several planets involved to look at. They would concentrate first on any planets in the ‘green zone’ of the system. The scanners were already gaining information about the sun in the center, and would give them where to go first.

The gas giants in the system would be next, many of the moons could hold precious metals or other elements easily mined on the surface. Glancing down she spotted something strange. Expanding the scanners, and focusing it on one spot she briefly extended the range waiting for the computer to process the results.

Frowning at the sight of two fast-moving objects, she waited to see if the warbook could identify it. A micron later her answer appeared on the screen causing her to quickly check again to make sure there was no errors.

She felt herself go cold at the sight, two Cylon raiders. What were they doing out here. She closed in on Coral indicating with hand signals to be quiet, and follow her. She kept an eye on the raiders turning around a bit before seeing something even worse around one of the planets, a basestar.

With that information she turned her viper around leaving the system quickly. The commander had to be informed of this new information. Cylon basestars were close by, and could become a threat to the fleet. Despite three battlestars, she had a feeling Adama would want to avoid a battle if possible.

If the Cylons were now ahead of them, what else might they expect to discover? It also caused problems with their goal to find Earth. They were now ahead of the path they needed to take. For once, she felt glad she was not the one in charge of making these decisions.


Ares sat down in the communications room, waiting as Captain Johnson, Troy and Bri appeared on the screen.

“Admiral,” Johnson said. “We have some new information. The patrols picked up a Cylon basestar inside system Alpha-Six.”

Ares looked at the starmap, seeing the system in question in relation to the other outposts and ships of the fleet. It was close to the outpost six, which they were manning now. The 501st viper squad had been deployed there.

“We also encountered a Cylons basestar around the planet supporting life,” Troy said.

Ares nodded, not really surprised by that. He expected to see Cylons around somewhere.

“We also picked up a patrol of vipers,” Troy said, continuing. “They split up and checked out the system, then when one noticed the basestar, quickly headed out of the system. We tracked the direction.”

“We have to assume the Cylons know about them as well,” Ares said, looking over things as everything seemed to become even more complex. “How did the basestar react?”

He watched Troy think the question over for a few seconds before replying. “It did nothing, even after the viper left it remained in orbit. I’m sure it spotted the vipers.”

“A trap,” Ares said, now trying to figure out where it might be. He sorely wished to use the scout ships, and decided he had to. “I’m sending two scout ships out with the lightning drive. We need information on what this trap might be, and where this Colonial fleet is.”

“If you think it’s wise,” Johnson said. “Should we continue on to the area?”

“Yes, you have permission to fire on any Cylon ship as you feel you should engage,” Ares said. “Keep me informed.”

With that the conversation ended and he quickly sent a letter to the 1st patrol squadron to send out two scout ships. After that he hailed Gunther, waiting only a few minutes before he answered.


“We have some news, head to sector seventy-two, alpha,” Ares said. “That’s where we think the Colonial fleet is, and heading into a trap.”

“How many basestars?” Gunther asked.

“Unknown, sending a couple of ships from the 1st patrol squad, and,” he paused in thought, deciding it was a good idea, “I’m going to add the Argo, Warspite to the Hornet, the 4th battle group, to support you.”

“You think this is serious,” Gunther said.

“Very, we don’t know what all it out there, and I don’t want to be caught off guard,” Ares said.

“I’ll move my ships now, and who is the commander of the 4th battle group?” Gunther asked.

“I’m sending Pratt to oversee it,” Ares said.

“I’ll inform him of my movements,” Gunther said, signing off as Ares stood and headed towards a familiar office. A few seconds later he knocked on the door, opening it and walking into.

“Commander, what can I do for you,” Pratt said, never gotten used to calling Ares by his new title.

“Pack up, I’m sending you out,” Ares said.

“Anything to do with this Colonial battlecuriser?” Pratt asked.

“And a Cylon basestar and probably a trap,” Ares said. “I’m gathering the Argo, Warspite and Hornet to form the 4th battle group, and you’re in charge.”

“You’re serious. I’ll get packed and head over to the Argo now,” Pratt said.

“Good, we’ll need you to move out head to the same spot, sector seventy-two alpha,” Ares said.

“All right,” Pratt said, shutting down his computer, moving to pack a few things in his office before he would stop at his quarters for clothes and head out.

Ares continued back to the command room, things had changed and he wanted to get another look at what was going on.


Commander Tigh listened as Sheba gave her report. Cylon basestars in the system. The news was bad, but yet, they probably did not know they were here, at least not yet.

“Are you sure?” he asked her.

“Yes, saw it in orbit around the planet that was after I spotted a couple of raiders, probably on patrol around the system” Sheba replied.

“We’ll have to inform all patrols of the fact they might encounter raiders,” Tigh said. He also understood they would have to inform Adama of this latest situation.

“I can tell the both squadrons here,” Sheba said.

“Go ahead, I’ll call Adama and let him know,” Tigh said, watching as Sheba walked out of the room followed by Coral. He then turned to the screen to call the Galactica.

He waited a few microns before Commander Adama’s face appeared on the screen.

“I take it you have some news?” Adama said.

“Sheba returned from her patrol of one of the systems nearby, and, Adama, we discovered a basestar,” he said, watching as Adama’s face showed a mix of emotions, shock was not one of them.

“So, they have finally caught up to us,” Adama said, pausing to think about the situation. “Which system, can we go around it?”

“It’s not right in front of us, but we would need to turn the fleet to avoid the basestars scanners,” Tigh said.

“Plot the course, we’ll maneuver around, can’t risk being detected,” Adama said making a decision.

“Yes sir, I’ll have it transmitted shortly,” Tigh said, only slightly disappointed they were not fighting. But if this was a detection line then avoiding it might allow them to slip the Cylons again, and perhaps for a long time in the future. He knew to attack might only cause the Cylons to figure out where they were. The last Cylon basestar they attacked, but both knew it would give a direction of the fleet. They had been victorious, but the damage to the Galactica had taken time to repair.

“When we have it I’ll inform the fleet and the council of the situation,” Adama said. “Though they’ll probably ask why we don’t attack.”

“Three battlestars against one, I can see their point,” Tigh said.

“Yes, it would be the urge, but we must conserve our resources to battles we can’t avoid,” Adama said.

“I understand.”

The conversation ended and Tigh went to work on the course with his bridge crew.


Tagget watched as the last captain of his small fleet entered the room. They were all looking over at him now, knowing he had something to say, but no idea what that might be.

“Thank you all for coming over on such short notice,” Tagget said, unsure how they would take his news and decision.

“I take it that because we’re here, the news isn’t good,” Orion said, a former battlestar commander, retired before the destruction of the Colonies.

“The system has nothing to offer?” Percy, the captain of the other civilian ship said.

“No, but this news is about as bad,” Tagget stated. “We discovered a planet capable of supporting life. How much we don’t know.”

“Then we should be heading there, not talking, our supplies are almost gone,” Percy said.

“There is a problem, the patrol discovered a Cylon basestar in orbit around the planet,” Tagget said, watching as everyone went silent. They all appeared stunned at the news but Tagget continued on. “Now, the Sunflare can easily take on a basestar, however, our fighters are outnumber ten to one. Those are odds we cannot overcome.”

“What are you suggesting, we head somewhere else, we’ll be starving before we are halfway there,” Percy said. Tagget saw the others agreed with him. Several groups emerged in talking and debating until Tagget stood gaining everyone attention.

“We all know that. This is a vote to attack.”

End part 4

Continued in Part 5: No retreat

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