Sunday, November 06, 2011

Swiftstar breaks into Perseus Deeps

The Tau position in the Perseus Deeps had become increasingly desperate during the latter part of 011M42 with the loss of the Skera colony, and despite the protestations of Shadowstrike that the war on Tyndareous was unfinished, the Ethereals decided to reinforce their positions in the Deeps, particularly the main bases of Lucardium and Cernunnos.

Admiral Swiftstar was given the task of moving his considerable fleet from the Mabb Nebula to the Perseus Deeps, as quickly as possible. This meant travelling near to the Rim Worlds, the home of the Catechism. Recent fleet actions convinced the Tau admiral that the Catechism fleet, although formidable, might ignore the Tau fleet passing through their territory, given their recent losses against the Imperium.

Unfortunately for Swiftstar, whoever was commanding the Catechism clearly objected to the large Tau fleet lumbering its way through the Rim Worlds, and before long the Tau found themselves with a large Chaos fleet on their tail. Only able to make short warp hops, the Tau admiral knew he would have to give battle eventually, and the superior speed of the Chaos warships ensured the battle took place in the confusing mercurial zone of a solitary star near to Aornis, once a Tau base.

The Chaos fleet split into two divisions, with the greater part led by a Desolator class battleship, passing down the port wing of Swiftstar's "box" formation. This allowed Swiftstar to turn his fleet to starboard, lining up the smaller battlegroup of three cruisers in his formidable gunsights. Unfortunately in the difficult environment of the sun's radiation belt, the shooting on both sides suffered, and while the chaos fleet lost one devastation class vessel and had two more cruisers crippled, Swiftstar was frustrated that the damage wasn't more significant. He was more annoyed by the fact the two crippled cruisers managed to escape within the sensor baffling radiaton belts and plasma filaments.

Swiftstar then manouvered his fleet in a wide arc to face the remaining chaos vessels, suffering severe damage to two of his protector class cruisers and the loss of his escorts. The battle continued spasmodically for another hour, before both sides withdrew, neither side able to claim victory despite the greater material losses of the chaos fleet. By 1211.011M42, Swiftstar had made it to Cernunnos, significantly strengthening the Tau position in the Perseus Deeps, but the damage to two capital ships was an unwelcome setback.

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