Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Semi-Final

It was all arranged, the names had been pulled out of a hat and I was up against Wedge. I was partly annoyed at this because I didn't want to have to kill the leader of the squadron but also glad because I had no intention of facing Jagged Fel anywhere but the final of this.
Wedge didn't seem to mind, or else he was just putting on a brave face.

Again, I faced him before we got into our simulators and we shook hands.
"May the Force be with you Jaina." Wedge told me, very solemn.
I nodded to him. "And you."

The countdown began and then we were catapulted into space.
"Readings Sparky."
The R5 unit answered me with a series of tootles. I set my jaw. "Right then, lets take Uncle Wedge for a ride."

I accelerated up, shooting past him, firing as I went, no to hit but to distract him. I flew off into empty space and he followed. I smiled and led him a merry dance around the place. Ducking and weaving his shots I flew faster and farther until I decided it was time for my next move. Ramming my joystick forward I dropped into a steep decent that was almost vertical. Wedge followed, but at a more gentle angle. I looped myself and him, flying upside down, then righting myself.
Coming in behind him I bombarded him with laser fire. I was trying to get his shields down to hit him with a torp. But Wedge was hard to catch. He had much more experience and after a few seconds of fire he managed to break away.
Sparky told me that his shields only dropped to 95%
"Curse you Wedge, what have you been doing to that ship?" I muttered.

Wedge was now on my tale, his first few shots made the whole ship shake. "Revert shields to the tale, Sparky."
He complied and Wedge's shots had little effect on me, however my shields were now down to 90%
I barrel rolled to the right, slowed my speed and turned my nose to the left. Wedge was going too fast and didn't slow down in time. I blasted him full on with a torpedo. It hit him side on! "All RIGHT!!!" I punched the air as I kept flying to the left of my original course.
Wedge however changed direction and came at me head on.
"Oh Sith! Sparky! Shields to the front!" I yelled as I pushed my X-wing up. Sparky complied but slightly to late. A shudder went through my cockpit as the blast hit me. I gritted my teeth. "Fine then. Lets play it that way. Shield reading Sparky."
A series of whistles told me that we were both on 50%

I changed my shields to cover the whole of my ship and chased after Wedge. A viscous dog fight ensued, full of evasive and offensive manoeuvres, laser fire and a few ill placed torps. Near the end of which I was on 30% shields and Wedge was 35% Only one mistake and this game would be over, leaving me free to advance to the finals.

Wedge made it first. Trying a basic move that amateurs would fall for, he decelerated hoping that I would over shoot him before I realised that he was plainly in my sights. It didn't work, I locked on and blasted his ship into pieces.


I shook my head at him when we got out. "Did you really expect me to fall for that?"
Wedge, too shook his head, "No, but it was the only thing I hadn't tried. You fly just as well as your Father."
I blushed with pride. "Thanks Wedge." I slapped him on the back, in a friendly way. "You owe me a drink."


Jagged Fel defeated Gavin with a spectacular piece of flying which meant that it was him versus me in the Final. I couldn't wait!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

The Start of the Tournament

The battles were drawn up and the dog fights had begun.

As expected I soared through the group stages, luckly none of the squadrons top fliers were in my group. I was up against Hobbie in the quater finals.
We shook hands before entering our sims.
"Don't worry, I'll go easy on you." Grinned Hobbie. Smiling back at him I laughed. "Sure I shouldn't be going easy on you?"

Five.
Four.
Three.
Two.
One.

I was shot out into virtual space and was facing the x-wing that I knew Hobbie was flying. Checking my machines I looped over and back on myself to gain a little time. My R2 unit whistled at me.
"I got that thanks Sparky."
Snap rolling to the right Hobbie went to my left. I accelerated to attack speed and spun uderneath his ship firing off some pasma blasts as I did. They missed as Hobbie pulled upwards sharply and tilted off to the right. He dove and as he flew past me I glipsed him in his cockpit. I gritted my teeth and dived down after him, latching onto his tale.
Pushing off a couple of shots Hobbie dodged them with some nice evasive manouvers. Twisting and turning we danced through space with him dodging my shots.

Suddenly he decelerated nearly stopping and I was forced to pull up into a steep asscent to avoid crashing into him. He was now out of my sights, cursing I realised that that was what he wanted. I sensed something coming up behind me and snap-rolled over to the right. Despite my reactions some plasma shots hit my shields.
Sparky screached at me. Shields down to 90%
I let my joystick go and my x-wing fell off into a dive, spining to the right. As I fell past Hobbie's x-wing he let fly a few more shots but they missed me. Underneath him I leveled out of my dive and headed back at Hobbie. I blasted out a stream of plama shots, most of which hit him.
"Reading on ememy shields Sparky?"
Down to 60%
"One well placed rocket will finish him..." I mused, more to myself than Sparky.

Just then Hobbie rapidly changed direction and bombarded me with fire. I banked to the right but Sparky got a hit, blowing him to pieces.
"Sparky!!" I yelled before I remebered it was just a sim. Hobbie shot past me and I followed, hot on his tail.
My machines told me that my shields were down to 75%. I gritted my teeth and went in to finish it. Accelerating I droped underneath him and let off a rocket, aiming it upwards then I curved up and flew above him aiming one at the empty space infront of him. The first one hit him just below the cockpit and as he lost control he flew into the second one, exploding into bits.

I sighed and pushed myself back from the controls, exiting the simulater. Hobbie came up and shook my hand. "Nice flying Solo. You're not half bad."
I grinned. "Thanks Hobbie." Wedge too came up to congratulate me. "So that's you, me, Gavin and Jagged in the semi's then. I can't wait to see who you are flying against. It'll be some fight."
"Cheers Wedge, but I don't plan on facing Jag until the final so that leaves you or Colonel Darklighter for me to fly against. Better say on my good side!"
I grinned and waved at him as I went off to get some rest.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

More than one Explosions

The world exploded into millions of stars around me as I got vaped for the fourth time in a row. Sighing I pushed myself out from the controls of the sim and wiped my hand down my face. What the heck is wrong with me? I never fly this badly! An image of Jag scowling came unbidden into my mind. "Right," I thought, "Let's have this out."

Jag looked up from the book that he was reading in the common as I walked in. We were the only to people there, everyone else was either in the cantine or on a sim.
"Jaina." Jag nodded his head in acknowledgement to me and went back to his book. I remained standing, " What have you been up to Jag?" He shrugged his broad shoulders and didn't answer. "How have things been around here?"
"Same as always."

Frustrated I grabbed the book out of his hands. "What is your problem? I'm trying to be friendly here!"
Jag stood up and glowered down at me. Being nearly a head taller than me it was quite effective but I held my ground and held his gaze. "Funny. I don't remember you wanting to be friendly
the last time we met."
I was shocked. "What? Is that what this is about?"
"Yes." came the blunt reply and his gaze hardened. It was making me go weak, his green eyes were staring into my hazel ones. He was so close to me...
"But... you were helping me! I was very grateful for it."

He lowered his voice so it was softer. "I thought that you used me slightly. You asked me to do something and then ran off without telling me the full story."
"I didn't know the full story then! I'm sorry, I'll tell you now if you want." I could see the faint freckles across the bridge of his nose...

"That will not be necessary. I read about it in the papers." He leaned in slightly, "There was an advantage to it..."
I had no idea what was going on, my stomach was full of butterflies, he was getting so close, leaning in a bit with every word. I wanted to pull back but was held there by some force that I couldn't control. "And that was..."
"I got to see you... I don't often get to see you..." His voice was a whisper now. He was so close that I could count his eyelashes, if we got any closer we would kiss...

BANG! The door flew open and Jag jerked his head back from me and stepped back. Picking up his book he muttered something about needing to talk to Wedge and briskly exited the room past Hobbie who had opened the door. Hobbie walked in and opened a paper without saying anything which left me to wonder what had just happened.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

A Mini Tournament?

Landing neatly in the docking bay I jumped out of the cockpit of my x-wing. I was wearing a dark brown flying suit and as I reached the exit of the bay I was greeted by the rest of the squadron, well nearly everybody. Jagged Fel hung back and I was unsure why. The force radiated off him like he was a force heater but all it gave away was the sign that he was full of life, I was unable to read his feelings. Quite suddenly I got a pulse of annoyance off him. Shocked I looked at him but he just nodded at me and exited. Frowing I turned back to the rest of the team to greet them properly.

Wedge Antillies and Colonel Gavin Darklighter gathered us all on the bridge of the main ship. He spread his arms and began to talk, "Welcome back everyone. I'm glad you could all make this week."
The Colonel continued, "We decided that this training session would be a bit... different to others."
"We're gonna shoot something real?" shouted Hobbie from the back of the group.
Gavin laughed, "No, but kind of. This week we are going to be Simming you all against each other in a mini tournament. The last one alive wins."
Wedge picked up again. "Now noramly the sims would be you all flying as one squadron against some make believe enemy, but I think that putting this personal twist and pitting you against each other will bring out a better pilot in you all."
"And the winner will get a prize!" added Gavin.
"Yea, to tell Han Solo that he owes me money." Wedge's comment caused everyone to laugh, including myself.

"You have today and tomorrow to practice on the simulators. Then we are starting." Wedge clapped his hands, "Off you go then! Go get some practice, some of you will need it!" And he grinned at us all.

As everyone exitited I pushed my way up to the front to where Wedge was talking to Gavin. As I approached Gavin took his leave, nooded to me and left. "Good to see you Lutienent. Glad you could make it."
I teturned the nod that he gave me. "Glad to be here Colonel. I think this is a great idea."
"Glad you think so. Shouldn't you go and get some practice? I know Lutienent Fel will be."
I frowned, "Has he been acting strangely lately?" I asked. "No, just sullen and quiet. You know how he is."
"Yea..." I asnwered distractly. "Yea, I suppose you're right. Thanks Colonel, I think you're right, I had better go practice."

I walked down the hallway to where the simulators were kept thinking about all that had happened. Why was Jag suddenely annoyed at me? I soon forgot all about it though, as I got lost in the dangerous world of fighter pilots.