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His ship was still flying out of control in the middle of the battle. Kat flew after him as fast as she could.

“What can we do?” Kat said. “We have to save him!”

“We can try to bump him into the fighter bay. It’s risky, but it’s better than leaving him to freefall out here.” Amy said.

“I’ll give you guys cover.” Brett said.

Kat and Amy flew ahead while Brett stayed and tried to stay between them and enemy ships. Kat and Amy would be damaging their shields by ‘bumping’ into Heath’s ship to direct him to the fighter bay.

“Here we go.” Amy said as she moved in and gave Heath a bump, stopping the spin it had and sending it in the general direction of the Colossus’ fighter bay.

“Hurry up over there, these guys aren’t playing nice.” Brett said as gunfire could be heard hitting his ship through the radio.

“We’re trying over here.” Kat said.

Kat manoeuvred ahead and was ready to give the second and final bump to send Heath’s ship into the fighter bay. Heath was approaching fast and Kat would have to time it perfectly.

“Please let this work.” Kat said to herself.

As Heath passed her, she bumped his ship and sent it right into the fighter bay. Heath’s ship hit the floor hard and bounced a couple of times before sliding the rest of the way and being caught by the safety net.

“Kat, keep your mind on what’s going on out here. The medical crews will check on Heath.” Amy said.

“Alright.” Kat said as she finally took her eyes off Heath’s ship.

“This is Commander Jen,” Jen said as her voice crackled through the radio. “We will be arming the few anti fighter beams we have to aid you. Stay alert, the fighting is so dense that getting a good lock on a ship will be hard.”

Seconds later, the anti-fighter laser beams were being fired from the Colossus. It was turning the tides on the battle in their favour. The beams were passing dangerously close to their fighters, so they had to stay on high alert.

Finally, the battle was won and the enemy retreated. The survivors flew their fighters into the fighter bays.

On the way in, Kat saw the wreckage of Heath’s ship and hurried to land and get out. She ran over to the ship and saw that Heath had been taken out and probably brought to sickbay.

She ran out the door towards dickbay.

Brett and Amy got out of their fighters and hugged each other. Everything was going wrong and many of their friends were getting hurt. In the last day, Mary-Kate was badly injured on the away mission, Ashley was barely able to cope with what was going on and Heath might have been killed in the battle.

“Are you okay Brett? How are you feeling.” Amy said as she looked at Brett.

“On days like these, Aimes,” Brett said as he looked at her in the eyes, “I almost forget how to feel.”

She hugged him again and he started to cry. Although he couldn’t consciously feel the stress, anger and sadness, it was still there and would come out when he couldn’t take it anymore.

“It’s alright,” Amy soothed. “let it out.”

After a few minutes, Brett collected himself and dried off his tears. His face was a little red from crying, but he didn’t care. “Thanks.” He said to Amy.

“You’re welcome.” Amy smiled. “Come on, let’s go see how everyone is doing.

They walked down the damaged halls. That last battle had caused some more damage to the already crippled ship. People were running everywhere and repair crews were working frantically to repair what they could.

They reached sickbay and they saw Kat and Ashley crying as they hugged. Amy and Brett assumed the worst and went over to them right away.

“What happened?” Brett said as he knelt in front of Ashley. Amy knelt in front of Kat and put her hand on Kat’s.

“Mary…Mary-Kate’s in a coma and they don’t know if she will wake up.” Ashley sobbed.

“And…” Kat sobbed as well “and they don’t know if… if Heath will survive the surgery.” She started to cry again.

Brett hugged Ashley tightly as Amy hugged Kat. Things couldn’t possibly get any worse than they already are.

Brett stopped hugging Ashley and said “I’m going to put a stop to this.”

“What do you mean?” Ashley said, wiping away a tear.

“This whole thing, enough is enough.” Brett said as he marched out the door.< .

Amy and Ashley followed him as Kat stayed to get any news she could on Heath’s condition.

“Where are you going?” Ashley asked as she tried to keep up with Brett who was stepping into a turbolift.

“Main bridge.” Brett said to the computer after Amy and Ashley got in. He then turned to them. “We’ve been attacked and crippled for two weeks now and we keep getting pounded and pounded. It’s time to put a stop to it.”

The turbolift doors opened and he stepped onto the bridge. Commander Jen was at a station, trying to co-ordinate repairs.

“Commander,” Brett said, “we need to talk… now.”

Jen looked up at Brett, not happy with his tone of voice. She looked closely at the three standing before her and saw they were in shambles.

“Fine.” She said as she lead them to the meeting room.

She sat down behind a desk and said “What is it.”

“This is insane.” Brett said, “We’ve been out here for weeks and we just keep getting hit again and again. We’re running out of supplies, were running out of repair material, we’re running out of people and we’re running out of time.” He was getting angry now. “When is it going to be enough? When are they going to get us out of this hell?”

“Just what do you suggest we do?” Jen asked, standing up and putting her hands on her desk.

“We destroy the ship.” Brett said

“What?!” Jen said. “Do you have any idea what you’re asking?”

“Brett, you can’t be serious.” Amy said.

“Yes I am.” Brett said. “This ship is hardly staying together, the weapons systems are shot, we have no subspace drive and our escort is taking their own hits. We’ve lost two ships. Enough is enough! Salvage what we can and evacuate to other ships. Destroy the Colossus and get to a starbase.”

“First of all, I will make the decision on when enough is enough, second of all, just because a few of your friends get hurt, doesn’t mean we have to throw in the towel. This is war Brett, and in war, people get hurt.”

“You don’t need to remind me about what war is.” Brett said coldly. “I’m the one going out there to fight remember? You’re the lucky one, you get to sit at your desk and view the statistics and read the list of casualties. We’re the ones seeing it up front and personal.”

“Come on Brett, let’s go.” Ashley said, trying to pull Brett out.

“That’s quite enough out of you!” Jen yelled at Brett. “My job isn’t any easier than yours because I have to live with sending those people on those missions, knowing full well what will happen to them. As for destroying the Colossus, I refuse to give up on it. We’ve fought too hard and lost too many to give up now. I’m surprised you’re even thinking of giving up.”

“Look around you!” Brett said, “Everyone’s all banged up, our fighters are all heavily damaged and our weapons are next to nill. How many people are you willing to kill before you realize it’s hopeless!”

“You’re dismissed Lieutenant!” Commander Jen said intensely.

Brett looked at her and shook his head and started to walk out. He was about to walk out when Jen stopped him.

“One more thing.” Jen said.

Brett looked back at her, still having an angry face on.

“I want to get out of here as much as you do and I even agree the ship isn’t worth it. But, command has ordered me to protect the ship at all costs. They know the morale of the GTA will drop considerably if the ship is destroyed. It did take years and years to build this thing.” Jen said.

Brett wasn’t angry with Jen anymore. He walked back up to her desk. “But, Commander, the people back at command aren’t out here. They don’t know what it’s like. We’ve lost how many ships, fighters and people up to date? All this for a giant wreck that’s barely staying together” He walked around the room. “I don’t feel like being killed out here, just so a bunch of soldiers can feel better about things.”

“It isn’t that simple.” Jen said.

“Isn’t it?” Brett interrupted. “What would be worse? Us, knowing we can’t save the ship, evacuate and destroy it, thereby saving thousands of lives. Or, we try to make it back and fight off the enemy wings which won’t stop coming. They will slowly kill us off fighter by ship by ship, fighter by fighter, system by system, person by person. Giving them the joy of knowing they took out the Colossus.”

“Sickbay to Ashley.” The doctor’s voice interrupted on the comm. Channel.

“Ashley here.” Ashley said.

“I think you should come down here.” He said

Ashley’s face went really pale. Suddenly, the argument Brett and Jen were having didn’t matter anymore. Amy stood beside Ashley in case she should faint.

They made their way down to sickbay to find Mary-Kate laying on a bed, with the doctor standing beside her, writing something down. Heath was an another bed on the other side of the room, since the other beds had been damaged and had debris on them. Kat was sitting beside Heath’s bed, holding his hand.

Chapter 9

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