The Athena Operation

The Athena Operation by Dalton Cortner

Book: The Athena Operation by Dalton Cortner Read Free Book Online
Authors: Dalton Cortner
“It’s a temporary solution to a permanent problem.”
    Ret moved to the front of the group. “I don’t think so. Our people are being annihilated. We need to cut seythra forces anywhere we can. What if we get to Trini 5010 and there’s just a hoard of seythra waiting for us? Or what if they abandoned the planet? We don’t know what we’ll find in Trini, but we do know about the Baryon. I say we focus on that. “
    “Sadhis, Seraph, you’re the highest-ranking here,” Lylo said. “I leave the decision to you two. We have deployment and a fleet of soldiers ready to offer aid, though we’re very limited in number.” Lylo tapped away on one of the computer terminals.
    Sadhis cleared his throat. “In my opinion, commandeering the Baryon is our best chance to hit the seythra hard.”
    Diam turned to Seraph. “What do you say, son?”
    “You two are the Confederate Chamber,” Seraph said. “You should decide.”
    Lylo shook her head. “We saw only the initial attack before we were escorted out. You two know what we’re truly dealing with. We have estimated numbers. You have seen the damage. You have the best idea of where to allocate our resources. Do we attack their forces, or their home world?”
    “Sadhis and I are supposed to lead the rest of these guys to the salvation of the galaxy? Save the universe? We’re going to get mowed down like everyone else,” Seraph said.
    Diam stared hard at Seraph. “Even if you do, it’s better than sitting here and waiting to die. I know you, and I know Sadhis. You are two of the best soldiers I’ve ever seen. You can do this. I know you can.”
    Seraph felt helpless. He had little faith in his ability to lead the universe to any sort of victory. Why him? He was just a Commander. Most of the politicians in this very room despised his methods, and yet everyone was looking to him for guidance?
    As overwhelmed as he was, he couldn’t sit back and wait. This was the first safe area he’d seen, and it lit a small fire in him. There was hope. Right now, he had a job to do.
    Seraph nodded and stared at the men in front of him.
    “Alright, we’re going in to attack the Baryon immediately. Following the success or failure of this mission, we will proceed immediately to Trini 5010.”
    “Hold up,” Drever said. “I’m not throwing my life away because you people think it’s a good idea to throw our extremely limited forces head first against the seythra. No fuckin’ way.”
    “You’ve helped us this far. Will you just turn your back on the dying because it benefits your own survival?” Sadhis asked.
    Drever chuckled. “You’re damn right I will.” He turned to walk off.
    Seraph turned his attention to the weapons locker. Its supply wasn’t enough for such a mission. He glanced around the room, looking for arms of any kind, but there was little else that could aid them.
    Seraph groaned. He turned to Lylo. “I’m guessing you don’t have any war ships stored down here. We’ve got a ship, but aside from the damage it’s already sustained, it’s small, and it’s hardly something I’d use to take on the Baryon.”
    “Unfortunately, no,” Lylo said. “The ship that brought us here was a transportation vessel. It left immediately after dropping us off. As unfortunate as the situation is, what you have is what you must work with.”
    “You aren’t getting within one hundred feet of that fuckin’ ship in what you’ve got.” Drever said. “It’s a goddamn suicide run, and you all know it.”
    “We might be able to do it,” Ret said. “We’re just going to have to send the reinforcements in a transportation vessel ahead of us and hope that they draw the gunfire long enough for us to land and go to work.”
    Sadhis nodded. “That may work, though I suggest we split up the reinforcements into three separate vessels. We’ll have one go to each side of the ship, and we’ll head for the bottom loading bay. There usually aren’t any weapons near the

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