Captain's Log 7

An 8 Hour Gaming Session of Fate Core RPG - Cloud Ark

The Adventurers: (aka the Player's Characters)
Name High Concept Trouble
Sapphire "Fire" Rose Ly'xian Airship Explorer Orphan, With Way Too Much Family!
Orn Rose Dragon Knight, Whippersnapper Living Breathing Cat Carrier
Sari Dunry Phoenix Rising Chaos That Burns Or Healing Rays? Which Will It Be?
Session Start:  Sunday -- 3pm
Captain's Log:  [Date (114 days into game)]
149 days without incident.
Westport City.
Westport was a welcome sight, and when I saw Agatha the day's pain receded.
We invited, Alex, Agatha and Magnus to dine with us on the Rose that evening so we could plan what to do next.  The Pirate King, Bloodwind, and the Blacktails needed to pay, not to mention the Imperials.  Sari put on a fine feast and in the end we decided on a "Radical Plan" as Magnus called it.
We would load up the Rose with volunteer fighters off the Mapledown Hunter and go after the flagship by ourselves.  As Sari said, "Crazy works for us," and so that was what we would use.  Our thought was that every attack on the flagship was by big heavily armed and armoured ships of the line, but as Anarchy proved -- and all the battles before -- our small size, manoeuvrability and speed added to our arsenal of exotic weapons made us just as deadly, if not more so.
We spent the day moving the Mapledown Hunter's Lightning gun to the main deck of the Rose and Orn built a boarding craft to move a small fast team from the Rose to the Flagship during the battle.
In the end we had 10 volunteers; they were called crazy by their mates, but they were people that had seen what we could do first hand.  I was honoured to have them. Even the wounded Metal Tempest joined, as he could reload and arm the ballista faster than anyone else.
I thought that Sari had left us, but just before we were to set sail, she rejoined the ship.  There was something different about her, but what I couldn't say, maybe more heat came off her and her eyes had a flicker of flame deep within, whatever it was she insisted to be part of the boarding crew.
Just before dark there were multiple reports from within the Spike Pass.  From the smoke columns, the Imperials must have started their blocking of the Pass to make their pass the only fast way into the West.
We are heading out in the dark of night.  The faster we can strike the flagship the better the odds that Bloodwind will not know about our Lightning Guns, and perhaps he will take some damage from those blasts.
Captain's Log:  [Date (115 days into game)]
150 days without incident.
West of Spike Pass.
Orn had one of his epiphanies and so we made good time going the wrong way through the Pass.  Maybe those blasts were fortuitous, as the normal gale force winds were barely a breeze.  Within hours, we were almost through the Pass when we came across the Flagship.  It was the largest thing I have ever seen in the air; truly this was small Port floating in the air, rather than an airship!
Without wasting any time, Orn and the Boarding crew readied themselves as did my gunners and musketeers.  We came in low, almost scraping the ground, before pulling up and firing a barrage of Gatling gun, Lightning and Cannon fire. The whole forward edge of that thing lit up with explosions and fire as we destroyed or disabled 3 larger hangar doors.  Under cover fire, the boarding craft made contact with the lower aft section.  It would be the last I would see of it until the end of the battle.
A storm was brewing and it started to spit rain.
I kept my altitude and went right under the thing as claxons started to sound above.  I strafed two massive cannons, most likely what they used to subdue settlements like Mapledown.  The Lightning guns had a very satisfying effect -- they must have ignited the shells within -- both turrets exploded, ripping the cannons and turrets from the ship!  If the Rose had been any larger or slower we may have been destroyed by the falling debris.  To add insult to injury, a stray Ornball crashed into the base of one of the stone pillars that make up the Pass' name and it collapsed right unto the blasted nose of the flagship, causing it to buckle.  Not one to miss an opportunity like that, I ordered every gunner to attack that area.  As we hoped, nearly a fourth of the ship tore away, falling into the pass below, only to explode in a wave of fire and turbulence that forced me higher and into the sights of their guns.
Again luck was with us, as I could now see the upper deck hangars opening, releasing a small swarm of smaller ships similar to the Orncycle, only smaller and looking like skimmer boats with short wings instead of a sail.  I ordered my gunners and musketeers to target the skimmers as I ran the Rose in a snaking path to strafe as many of the still opening hangars as I could.
Over half were damaged enough to get stuck partially open and from the explosions within, the skimmers hadn't expected that.  Have I mentioned how much I love my job?!  I'm sure anyone looking at me then would have been shocked at the maniacal grin on my face as pieces of flaming wreckage ejected from the hangars.
I nearly killed us all, as the first real return attack was fired then; their cannons were meant to smash through the heaviest of armouring -- as could be seen from the wrecked Imperial cruisers that littered the ground on the eastern side of the pass -- their shells were almost as large as Old Faithful, our medium cannon, and one of those just barely deflected off the starboard side.  That barest of hits made the Rose groan and slide sideways away from it.
I think that is when I had the briefest of thoughts that we might not be able to win the day, but then I wouldn't be writing this now, would I?
That hit moved us right into a wave of skimmers coming up from below, so I put the Rose into a dive, as I yelled for everyone to hold on, and smashed into them, using the skid plates as a battering ram.  I levelled out and called for the gunners to attack the remaining, unscathed hangars.
The storm was getting worse.
The flagship was smoking and holed, and I saw what could only be the command centre.  Aligning the Rose for a strafing run at it, I ordered everyone to fire upon it.  It went up like a firecracker.
That's when I saw Orn and the boarding crew signalling us for a pickup.  They were in a perfect spot for it.  All I had to do was fly under them and they could drop onto the balloons and climb down to the deck.
I moved us away as I tried to see where all the skimmers had gone.  The flagship was stuck there between two pillars and the cliff face; well if that wasn't asking for it I don't know what is.  I ordered a full barrage on the pillars and then the cliff.  That did the ticket, the flagship tore in two and the falling rocks smashed it to the ground and buried its corpse.
At that point I came up on deck, from the cockpit below, to watch as Orn overcharged Sari's Magma shard and then dropped it unto the wreckage of the flagship.  I dove for the deck wheelhouse and quickly moved us away.  Just in time too; the magma shard had melted its way into the engines and the entire thing detonated in a massive fireball that roared to meet the storm above and shoved the Rose violently enough to knock us all to the deck.
In that deafening roar that overloaded my hearing, I swear that I heard a voice whisper a warning, to run from the storm as fast as I could.  Was it Leif?
I signalled Orn, using our silent Orphanage code, to make haste to the cockpit, as I yelled at the top of my lungs for everyone to get below decks.  Had we acted with another moment's hesitation, a tornado would have dropped right on top of the Rose and destroyed us!  As it was, it took all of our skills to make it out of the Pass.
As we shot out onto the plains leading to Westport, I hauled the ship about and slowed her, so that we could see what was happening.  We might have needed to warn the City of another tornado attack, but then I saw the approaching cone of destruction slow and within it I could see a man.  The whirlwind dispersed and Bloodwind alighted onto a still standing pillar at the mouth of the Pass.
We sit here in the calm, as I scribble this account, not knowing if it, or we, will survive this next exchange.
Session End:  Sunday -- 11pm