Wing Commander: Desperation


1st Lieutenant
(Definitely a working title. I reread what I wrote and figured that Desperation was the best phrase to sum things up)


John Cutter sat in the cockpit of the ancient Scimitar class fighter in silence as he listened to the other pilots begin calling in their flight status. He smiled thoughtfully as he rubbed a gloved hand over the cockpit’s various instruments. It was the first time in nearly eight years that he sat in the cockpit of a Confederation fighter. Eight long years.

The Confederation desperately needed pilots for the war with this new species of alien that they encountered and they were willing to look anywhere for jocks, even their own prisons. John Cutter was a thief, a con artist, and a murderer. Or so the classified docs said. He was also the best damned pilot on this side of Confederation Space. Again, something the classified data stated.

When it was his turn to call up his status, he flicked on a switch and spoke quickly. “Wolfpack Five, green on ammo, green on fuel, all systems Go.” His voice was a touch on the high-pitched side and he spoke with a sneer. Today was to be yet another training mission -in a series of never ending training missions- to get the rookies and the old vets adjusted to the idea of working as a team. Wolfpack’s carrier, the XXX Class CVS Marshall, was in dry dock for another three weeks for repairs and the pilots had nothing to do other than train.

All fighters in the launch bay simultaneously flared up their engines as the last of the pilots called in their status. There were nine total pilots launching for this mission, more than the usual number, but not unheard of. The launch sleds pushed out the fighters one after the other. Once Cutter’s sled launched his fighter, he flared the afterburners briefly to give him an extra push out of the window.

<Cutter, cut it out and form up>

The flight leader was some hick from a backwater planet out along the former border of Confederation territory. His planet had fallen days after the Confederation’s first engagement. Cutter remembered as he moved to form up. He maneuvered the Scimitar into flight position as his wingman moved in on his right flank. The entire flight formed up a flying V as they performed a quick flyby of the dry dock station.

<All right jocks, break up into flight A and B, we’re going to play some cat and mouse to work on our wingmate tactics.>


The sound went unnoticed to everyone but John Cutter. He tapped his radar screen at the unidentified contact and it disappeared. He and his wingman broke off with the rest of the fighters on the right side of the Flight Leader and began forming up into a staggered claw formation.


<Hey what was that?>

Cutter’s hand froze inches from tapping his radar screen as a female voice, a pilot on the other ‘team,’ broke in. He began trying to scan visually everywhere his cockpit would allow.


<Frag, I think it’s a torpedo!>

Suddenly the com freq was alive with chatter as people started screaming orders and attempting to scramble pilots. Cutter broke off from the claw formation and began moving toward the last location that his radar showed the contact. His wingman, a rookie by the callsign of ‘Showboat’ silently peeled off with him

<Get that carrier out of dry dock now!>

<Wolfpack 5, 6, get back with your flight! Wolfpack flight, regroup and prepare for an attack!>

Cutter sneered silently at the order and flipped his switch to private comms as he looks about visually for his target.

<Showboat, you can head back if you want, I’m gonna find this tor-- >


Instinctively, the veteran pilot flipped off the safeties of his weapons and let fly a burst of Mass Driver rounds, they fell short and the torpedo stealthed again.

<Frag! I knew it. Showboat, watch my back.>


Paul Starks had been a farmer before the war had started. He’d been retired from the marines for almost seven years when the first bombs hit the planet. Now he was the leader of a resistance force attempting to disrupt Kilrathi operations and to save what slaves he could.

He crept through a destroyed building, slowly stalking a patrol of Kilrathi warriors as he thought about everything that had happened over the past several months. He looked about the building and realized that he couldn’t remember if this was part of the old diner that he used to frequent, or the post office. He shook his head, an odd thought.

The sound of rubble moving off in the distance caused the patrol to halt and, thusly, Paul. He was nearly too late in stopping, he’d let his reminiscing get in the way far to often these days. One day it’d get him killed.

The squad leader growled something and pointed in the direction of the rubble and a pair of warriors broke off to investigate. He then pointed in the opposite direction and said something similar as another pair of warriors broke off. The rest of the squad began moving toward cover, which meant one of the Kats were coming toward him.

Before the warrior got more than a few steps, the sound of metal clanked on the ground near where the Kilrathi squad leader stood. With that noise, time suddenly slowed down for Paul. Just as the Kilrathi’s suit picked up his signature, which caused the warrior to raise his weapon, a deafening explosion rocked the immediate area. The Kilrathi turned back to the bloody mist that used to be his squad leader – a fatal mistake -.

Paul raise his rifle and shouted as loud as he could before unloading several assault rifle rounds into the cat-like warrior’s armored suit. Down the Kilrathi went and for a brief moment, Paul knew that today wouldn’t be the day he’d die.

That was before he saw the assault vehicles turning around the corner. He’d been betrayed.


“Hey Summer, you hear about that attack on the Con Fed dry dock station out in the Gemini sector?” Jaime asked as he was wedged under the Centurion Heavy Fighter. Jaime was the mechanic on the Free Trader class vessel, the SS Star Traveler.

The vox crackled to life in response and a female voice responded. It was the resident physician on the small modified trading freighter. “Yeah, I watched something about it on CGN at the last stop we had made.”

“Ah, crap!” Jaime shouted as he dropped the wrench he’d be using on his forehead. He sat up quickly and caused himself to slam his head into the metal undercarriage holding the heavy fighter’s warheads. “Mmm, frag, that hurts. Ah!”

“You okay there?” Summer’s voice came out over the vox and locally as she quickly rushed into the Free Trader’s extended bay. She looked around with a sudden pang of fear when she didn’t immediately see her husband. “Jaime?”

“Yeah, uhn… Ah, over here.” Jaime’s voice was followed by the metallic sound of his sled moving from beneath the fighter’s belly. There was already a massive bruise forming on his forehead. Despite the obvious pain, he offered his wife a wry grin. “I’ll be fi---.”

Suddenly the freighter lurched and in the distance there was an explosion. The ships alert claxons began blaring and the spouses looked at each other with real fear. “What was that?” They both called into their vox’s simultainiously.

<Get that fighter up! We’ve got pirates on our tail!>


This is something of a prequel to a text based game I'm about to start working on soon. I figured it would both help myself stay motivated and help others see a few different viewpoints of what war might look like in the Wing Commander Universe.

In the near future, I plan on writing up more viewpoints from various other lifestyles. A researcher of some sort maybe, the Kilrathi once I get to know more about them, and maybe even do something involving a probe collected data from both (well all three if you count the UBW ;)) major factions during a vague part of the war.

Also, I highly encourage other forum users to toss in little shorts like this one to help flesh out what people might be doing in different areas of the galaxy during the Kilrathi War.

Oh bother, I neglected to re-re-reread my series of shorts until it was too late to edit. The carrier at the top is a Bengal-class utility carrier and it's the TCS Marshall, not the CVS Marshall.