Quest - Chapter 14
Friday, November 20, 2009

In the aftermath of the attack at the welcoming ball, the Crew of the Quest and the Earth governments go after the Terrorists.


Disclaimer: Joss, Fox, Universal Own em’. I’m just playing. No money being made. The situations come from my own twisted mind as do my original characters.


AN: Sorry for the delay. My muse went on vacation and didn't leave a forwarding address. Also. Warning for some bad words in English.


Quest-Chapter Fourteen


“How's Clay?” Sara asked Quest's doctor.

“He'll be fine, Sara,” Sherry Lee replied, “Bullet was a through and through to his left upper arm. He just wont be turning any wrenches for a few weeks.”

Sara Bryant nodded, “Good thing we brought Derrick on before we left.”

“Your father is no slouch either,” Sherry chuckled, “Or yourself for that matter.”

“I'm trying to keep Dad from working too hard on this trip,” Sara sighed, “He's not a young man anymore.”

“I wasn't a young man when you were born, Kiddo,” Allan said as he entered Quest's Infirmary.

Sara's cheeks darkened slightly, “Dad...”

Allan put his arm across his daughter's shoulders, “It's okay, Princess. Just yanking your chain a bit. And you do know that if you need me... just ask.”

Sara smiled, “I know... thanks, Daddy.”

Allan couldn't help the grin on his face when Sara called him Daddy.

“Babe?” Jeff said as he entered the infirmary, “Rachel is back with the shuttle.”

Sara looked at her husband and nodded, “There's no chance this hwoon-dahn can't get loose?”

Sherry answered, “If the report I got from the surgeons in Montreal is accurate, Mr. Chan won't be able to do much. One of the rounds that struck him, severed his spine at the L-1 vertebrae. Chan won't be able to move or feel anything much below his kidneys.”

“Good,” Allan snarled, “I detest terrorists...”

“What about, Mom?” Sara asked. Knowing about her mothers short stint as a Dust Devil after the war for independence.

“Your Mother thought she was continuing the fight. Wasn't until she saw what was really happening did she quit,” Allan replied.

“It is kind of shaky ground we're on here, Dad,” Sara said.

“Not our fight... well until we were in the middle of it. Besides, Trudy has already signed the mutual defense pact with the League. Now as signatories, we as Alliance representatives can legally assist.”

“It's amazing the the FTL cortex relays actually work,” Sherry commented.

“Takes a while but we can send data back and forth between Quest and Londinium,” Allan smiled

“Eight hours,” Sara added, “To send a message before it gets to Londinium.”

“Almost be easier to fly Quest back,” The doctor smiled.

“Need to take it easy on the coils. Probably have to fit a new set once we get back. They are wearing a bit heavier than I calculated,” Sara replied.

“No worries, Sara,” Allan said with a slight grin, “Still plenty of jumps left in this set.”


Robert Chan awoke slowly. He first realized that he was strapped down. And second that he couldn't feel anything much below his waist.

Upon realizing this, he awoke fully. His eyes wildly glanced around the room he was in. Spartan and clean, it looked like some kind of medical facility but different from any he had seen before.

“Liou coe shway duh biao-tze huh hoe-tze fuh ur-tze...” the terrorist muttered softly.

“That's not very nice,” replied a voice behind his head. Chan craned his neck, trying to see who was speaking.

“And neither are you, Robert Chan, born in the town of Dongwan-Hecun. South of what is left of Beijing.” Rachel Cobb growled, “You, ee da tuo da bien.”

Chan's eyes widened as he realized that the female speaking just out of his sight spoke very good Mandarin, although her accent was strange.

“Who are you?” Chan asked.

“Someone who you cannot lie to,” Rachel said as she stepped into his view.

Chan snorted, “You do not frighten me, child,” he said in Mandarin.

Rachel smiled, “You will learn to fear me,” Rachel replied in the same language, “I know everything about you, son of Stephen and Li Chan. Your parents would be sad if they were still alive. They wanted you to be an man of learning. Instead you became a common thug with pretensions of being a revolutionary.”

Chan's eyes opened wide in surprise, “How...” he breathed in English.

“Simple... I can read your mind...”


Hideki Tanaka carefully surveyed the patrons of the bar as he sipped his beer. The Japanese diplomat and World League of Nations, Minister of Safety and Security thought he might be in trouble.

Despite his ethnic Japanese name, Tanaka was half Chinese. And he followed his mother's political views about how the League had treated China in the reconstruction after World War Three. Most of the world blamed China for starting the nuclear war that had nearly killed all of Mankind.

In truth, it was the Alliance. The coalition government formed between China and the United States that had started the ground war. Pushed in that direction by it's Chinese majority Parliament.

But in the aftermath, since most of China had been blown back to the stone age and North America had come through, if not unscathed, at least mostly habitable, particularly on the Eastern Seaboard and New England in particular. Now, just over four hundred years after the war. Most of China was just reaching the level of technology it had during the mid to late twentieth century. While the rest of the world enjoyed a level of technological development comparable to that just before the war.

All over the globe, people of ethnic Chinese lineage were treated as second class citizens. Or so Tanaka thought, as did his cohorts in the Sinic Liberation Front.

The failure of the operation to kidnap the League President, Vice President and the Alliance representatives from across the stars could point back to him quickly. He had approved the catering company. A catering company run by a member of the SLF. That had allowed the groups leaders to substitute trained fighters for the wait staff.

What they hadn't counted on was the the crew of Quest being better fighters than even the SLF's own soldiers.

Tanaka was interrupted from his musing when he spotted three very attractive young women enter the bar. This part of Montreal had long been the city's place to be on a Friday night if you wanted to meet someone for a little casual sex. No matter if it was between strangers or as a business transaction. And some casual sex. Purchased casual sex. Just might be the ticket for him to forget his predicament for a few hours.

While not ugly by any stretch of the imagination, Hideki Tanaka wasn't a film star either. And with his diplomatic immunity, he could pick up prostitutes without fear of arrest or embarrassment.

The three women who had just entered looked the part of the higher class of working girls he preferred.

They made an interesting trio. A short blonde, a statuesque and muscled brunette and the third, a very striking and tall mixed race girl. She had a light toffee complexion and reddish brown curls. Tanaka immediately wanted her. All three wore a variation of the standard 'little black dress' that most of the working girls in this part of town wore.

It was nearly a uniform.

Finishing his beer, Tanaka came to his feet and casually made his way across the half full bar.

“Can I buy you ladies a drink?” Tanaka smiled smoothly.

“Thank you,” the tall brunette replied.

Tanaka signaled the bartender. The dark haired young man dressed in a white shirt and bow tie moved down to take the orders, “Sir?”

“A round for the ladies, my good man,” Tanaka smiled.

The bartender nodded, “Ladies?”

“Strawberry Daiquiri for me,” said the blonde.

“Rum and cola,” said the Brunette.

“Your best house drought,” said the dark skinned girl.

And for you, Sir?” the bartender asked.

“Drought, sounds great,” Tanaka grinned. Making eye contact with the dark skinned hooker. Casually he slid into the empty stool next to her. He held out his hand, “Hideki Tanaka.”

“Sara Washburn. And this is Rebecca Cook,” she said indicating the blonde, “And Roseanne Goodwin.”

“Pleased to make your acquaintance,” Hideki smiled.

“You don't see many people from Japan around here,” Rebecca commented.

“I work for the League,” Tanaka replied. Both lending credibility to his chat up routine and establishing that he was well off enough to pay whatever price his companion for the evening might charge.

“Your drinks,” said the bartender with his slight French Canadian accent.

The girls took their drinks and smiled. Tanaka took a healthy swig from his own glass.

“What brings you ladies to this part of Montreal?”

“We're... on the clock... so to speak.” Roseanne said with a knowing grin.

Tanaka matched the grin, “I see... service industry?”

“Full service,” Sara smiled.

“The best kind,” Tanaka grinned as he took another swallow of his beer.

“Are you looking for some service?” Rebecca asked.

“I think I am,” Tanaka replied.

Sara smiled, “We have a group discount.”

Tanaka's eyes nearly popped out of his head, “Group discount?”

“All three of us for the same price,” Sara smiled seductively.

Tanaka took another swig of his beer. It seemed like the room had grown warmer in the last few seconds. Of course the offer that was on the table might have something to do with it he thought.

“How... much?”

“How much do you have?” Sara asked.

“I...” Tanaka never finished his words as he suddenly slipped from his stool and crumpled to the floor, unconscious.

“About gorram time,” Becca Tam growled.

“Tell me about it, Bec,” Sara muttered.

Roseanne quickly moved to the now slumbering diplomat, “Should be out for a few hours.”

“Good,” said the bartender as he pulled off his bow tie. The young man's accent now more Boros than French.

“How come it took so long, Husband?” Sara asked Jeff as he moved from behind the bar.

“Less alcohol in the beer compared to the hard stuff. Took longer... at least that's what Sherry told me would happen.”

At that moment, several police officers accompanied by General Reed came into the bar, “Hook, line and sinker...”

“You said it, General,” Sara smiled.

“Your father is waiting with a shuttle three blocks from here, in a vacant lot,” The General smiled.

“Time to take out the trash,” Roseanne grinned as she hefted the slumbering Tanaka over her shoulder.

“Lets go,” the Captain of the Quest ordered.


Hideki Tanaka awoke with a start. He found himself in a small metal room. It was quite cold as well. He was handcuffed and strapped to a chair.

“Hey! What's going on?” the diplomat yelled.

With a mechanical whine, the door directly in front of Tanaka slid open.


Outside the small room stood, General Dan Reed and Republic of North America President and League of Nations, Vice President, Janice Blackwell. Along side the pair stood the dark skinned prostitute he tried to pick up in the bar. Now dressed in a simple uniform of some kind.

Sudden realization set in. He hadn't made the connection before but he knew who this young woman was.

Captain Sara Bryant-Reynolds of Quest. A second man, much older than the General stepped into view and Tanaka swore again. He easily recognized Allan Bryant.

“Funny how traitors always seem to end up in this room,” Allan stated, his voice as cold as the deck under Tanaka's bare feet. The diplomat was only wearing his underwear.

“What is the meaning of this?” Tanaka thundered, “I am an accredited Japanese Diplomat! I demand that you release me immediately!”

Dan Reed stepped forward. Tanaka suddenly realized the officer wasn't in his usual dress uniform but simple fatigues, “Shut up Tanaka,” the General growled.

Tanaka opened his mouth to protest but President Blackwell cut him off, “I am very disappointed in you, Hideki...”

“Oxonyo Undishiwa!” Tanaka swore in Japanese.

“Such nice language,” Allan growled.

“What did he say, Dad?” Sara asked.

“He told the president to suck his dick.”

Sara glanced at her father, “How is it you can speak Japanese and not Mandarin?”

“I only know the swears in Japanese,” Allan replied, “And how do you know I can't speak Mandarin? I learned it years ago. It was the only way to tell what you and your Mother were saying behind my back...”

Sara glared at her Father before focusing on Tanaka again, “Liou coe shway duh biao-tze huh hoe-tze fuh ur-tze!”

Tanaka's eyes shot wide.

“Looks like he speaks Mandarin too,” Sara grinned menacingly.

“What did you call him?” General Reed asked.

“Something along the lines that his mother was a whore and his father was a monkey,” Allan replied.

“Fuck you, old man,” Tanaka swore in English.

“Temper, temper, Hideki,” Allan smiled coldly, “A man in your predicament shouldn't be so negative.”

“You sold out the League, President Augustine, myself and the lives of nearly twenty Secret Service agents to your cohorts in the SLF,” President Blackwell stated.

“You don't have any proof...”

Sara held up a portable cortex pad and pressed a button. On the small screen, the face and voice of Robert Chan said who the traitor withing the League was... Hideki Tanaka.

“Coerced, no doubt,” Tanaka said, his voice loosing some of it's earlier confidence.

“No... I simply read it from his mind and then confronted him with the information,” said Rachel Cobb as she stepped up next to her Uncle and Captain/cousin.


“I read minds,” said Rachel's voice in Tanaka's head. Her lips never moved.

“We know where the SLF's Montreal safe house is, it's emergency backup location and even where the leadership is hiding in China,” Dan Reed said.

“There are a thousand men at the Citadel,” Tanaka growled out, not realizing in his anger that he just confirmed the accusations made against him.

“Doesn't matter,” Sara replied, “They are all in the underground bunkers... correct?”

She took Tanaka's silence as a yes, “Do you know what happens to a limestone mountain when you hit it with sixteen, five hundred pound, stainless steel projectiles traveling at mach twenty? Here... I'll show you...” Sara said by holding the cortex pad in front of Tanaka.

On the screen, it showed what looked like a satellite image of Earth. The image zoomed in until a small complex of buildings outside what looked like a cave entrance showed on the screen. Sara touched the com link in her ear, “Meghan... fire.”

In short succession, eight thumps were heard and the metal floor shook slightly as Quest's dual mass driver rail guns fired. The image on the screen split into two images. One zoomed in and the other pulled back slightly. Suddenly streaks of light could be seen boring through the atmosphere of the planet below.

On the zoomed image, the ground disappeared in a cloud of dirt and dust. The image backed off as the entire mountain containing the so called 'Citadel' was pounded into just so much broken rock. So much debris was thrown into the air by the impacts that it looked like a volcano had erupted.

“That's what happens...” Sara finished as the cloud of dust began to be blown away from the site by the prevailing winds. All that could be seen from the overhead image were several large craters and a pile of broken rock that once was a mountain.


“Mass driver,” Allan replied, “Don't fuck with us. We got bigger guns.”

“That brings us back to you, Hideki,” President Blackwell said menacingly, “Since the testimony of a telepathic eighteen year old girl isn't admissible in court... what should we do with you?”

“Let me go?” Tanaka asked, hopefully.

“That actually might work,” Allan said with a cold smile on his face.

“We'll even let you walk home,” Sara said, matching her father's smile, “But watch that step first step... it's long one.”

Dan Reed actually snorted. Composing himself, he addressed Tanaka, “In case you haven't figured it out yet, you're not on Earth.”


“You are on my ship... Quest,” Sara replied, “And we're currently in geosynchronous orbit over China.”

“By the way...” Allan began, “The room you're in... it's not a cell.”

“It's an air lock,” grinned Rachel.

“What? No!” Tanaka cried out as the inner door began to close.


the door thumped shut and the telltales on the panel indicated the door was secure.

“Madame, President...” Sara began.

“Which button?”

“The big red one in the middle,” Sara replied.

Without hesitation, Janice Blackwell slammed her hand down on the button.

The inner door creaked as the outer door snapped open, dumping the atmosphere and Hideki Tanaka into space.

It took five seconds before his heart stopped and his blood boiled.

“You know, Dad... after the last time and now Tanaka.... we're running short of chairs for the galley.”

“I think I can swing a few new ones, Princess.”

“I'll have some sent up from my office,” General Reed replied.

Allan chuckled slightly, reliving some of the tension of the last few minutes, “Madam President... would you and the General care for a full tour of Quest?”

“Certainly, “Dr. Bryant,” the President smiled.

“Enough with the titles,” Allan smiled, “And you need to stay for dinner. Sara and I are cooking.”

“Should we be worried?” Dan Reed chuckled.

“Only if my Momma cooks,” Sara grinned.

“Dan... Zoë can part a man's hair with a rifle at three hundred yards but she can screw up a sandwich...”

“I might just have to tell your wife you said that,” President Blackwell said.

“Janice... she'd agree with you.”




Sunday, November 22, 2009 5:46 PM


Chapter 9 cortex relays
1 Jump = “Time delay is two minutes.”
Chapter 14
3 Jumps = “Eight hours,” ?

Rail guns
Chapter 6
Therefore when the two, one hundred and fifty pound stainless steel,
mass driver rounds fired from Quest's pair of rail guns.
Traveling at a combined ship and gun velocity, nearly a quarter of the speed
of light struck the small frigate. 186,000 MPS/4= 46,500 MPS= 167 Million MPH
Chapter 14
“Do you know what happens to a limestone mountain when you hit it with sixteen,
five hundred pound, stainless steel projectiles traveling at mach twenty?
Mach 20 = 20*600 = 12,000 MPH
a bit slower.
As reference Shoemaker-Levy 9 Impact 60Km/sec = 37MPS = 134,000 MPH
Good story, details vary.

Monday, November 23, 2009 1:00 AM


Cortex relays...

There is a dust cloud a few light years out that obscures radio signals. The FTL Cortex can penetrate it but it takes a while to build up the data picture before it relays to the next node.

"My story and I'm sticking to it" (I admit that screw up)

Rail gun velocity (In the chapter, Quest nails the frigate, it's at full burn and hauling ass. combine the normal mach 20 plus muzzle velocity with the ships... Bang!

Pounding the mountain.... Quest is in geosynchronous orbit above earth, all you get is muzzle velocity minus atmospheric friction... Mach 20 is 'about' right.

As for pounding the mountain, I'm referencing a short story written by Tom Clancy where a single bunker buster 4500 pound bomb can penetrate a Limestone Karst.

I figure hitting a similar geologic formation with rail gun fire will take out most of the mountain.

In the 60's, Kelly Johnson wanted to make a "Kinetic" bomber out of the SR-71. dropping a tungsten projectile weighing around 1000 pounds from 80,000 feet at Mach three would hit the target like a small nuke.

The Air Force thought it was too sci-fi. Go figure.


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