|Place of birth||Razin, Alpha Centauri (2641)|
|Allegiance||Terran Confederation/Free Republic of the Landreich|
|Service/branch||Navy / Space Forces|
|Years of service||Confederation Space Forces: 2657-2667|
|Rank||Rear Admiral - FRLN|
Commodore - ConFleet
|Commands||Wing Commander - TCS Tarawa (2667)|
Captain - TCS Tarawa (2667-68)
Commander - DesRon 67 [Flag on the TCS Coventry] (2668-69),
Wing Commander - FRLS Mjollnir (2670)
Commander - FRLN CVE Fleet (2671-72)
|Battles/wars||Gettysburg Mutiny (2666)|
Invasion of Vukar Tag (2667)
Kilrah Raid (2667)
Sixth Battle of Munro (2668)
Free Corps (2668)
Second Battle of Hell Hole (2668)
Battle of Earth (2668)
Battle of Loki (2669)
Battle of Baka Kar (2671)
Landreich-Confederation War of 2671-72
|Awards||Terran Confederation Medal of Honor|
Free Republic of the Landreich
Order of Nova with Diamonds
Jason Bondarevsky was a Terran naval officer and pilot during the Kilrathi War, serving with the Terran Confederation and briefly with the Free Republic of the Landreich. Following the war, he served exclusively with the Landreich, eventually reaching the rank of Rear Admiral. Serving with distinction during the last years of the conflict, he is best remembered for his roles in Operation Back Lash in 2667 and during the Battle of Earth the following year.
Jason "Bear" Bondarevsky was born in the Russian Colony on Razin, Alpha Centauri in 2641. His father was Russian, his mother (maiden name Houston) was Australian. Jason had a single older sibling, Joshua Bondarevsky who joined the Terran Confederation Marines and later died during the defense of Khosan in 2661. His contact with his father was limited as a result of the war. Jason's father was a pilot with the Fleet. He was killed in combat in 2657 when Jason was only 16. Enraged by this, Jason stole a birth certificate from the local clerk's office and doctored it so that he could enlist.
He was a Second Class Flight Deck Mate on his first cruise. Two years later he went on to the Academy, where he met Janice Parker and Svetlana Ivanova, the latter of whom he developed a romantic relationship with. Unfortunately, she had failed the Advanced Spaceflight and Jump Point Physics Course and was dismissed from the Academy. Eager to prove herself against the Kilrathi to avenge for her flunking out of the Academy, Ivanova transferred to the Terran Confederation Marines where she eventually reached the rank of Major and the position of air-to-ground coordinator for the First Marine Commando battalion.
After gradutation, Bondarevsky was assigned to the Waterloo-Class Cruiser TCS Gettysburg as a pilot. It was during a mission flown off the Gettysburg in 2664 that Bondarevsky met Captain Grierson of the destroyer TCS Intrepid for the first time. Having been forced to eject during combat, Bondarevsky was rescued by tractor beam by Grierson with several Kilrathi destroyers in hot pursuit. This initial meeting between the two men became of mutual benefit later, during the events of Operation Back Lash when both were assigned to Strike Force Valkyrie.
On 2667.072, after encountering unarmed Kilrathi civilian transports in the N'Tanya system, Commodore Cain, commanding officer of the Gettysburg, ordered his pilots to destroy the transports. The pilots refused and triggered a mutiny that successfully removed Cain from command. However, soon afterwards, the crew divided into two divergent groups. One group under Colonel Ransom wanted to continue a career of terrorism and piracy and disregarded notions of returning to the Confederation. The other group was led by Lt. Colonel Poelma and Lt. Bondarevsky and they sought to rejoin the Fleet as quickly as possible.
As the debate on their next course of action continued, the Gettysburg jumped from N'Tanya system to Rigel where they then staged a raid on the Rigel Supply Depot. The raid was led by Colonel Ransom and was successful in capturing the depot intact, however, during the raid a prisoner attempted to escape and what followed was described as a "massacre" of the depot's crew by Ransom's team. This event caused the opposition group to leave Ransom's team on the depot. Colonel Ransom turned the depot into a temporary headquarters until he could retake the Gettysburg.
The Gettysburg crew sent out a signal to the TCS Concordia informing them that they were willing to negotiate. Bondarevsky was selected to meet a representative from the TCS Concordia. He rendezvoused with Colonel Christopher Blair who then escorted him back to the Concordia for debriefing. Upon arrival, he was imprisoned because of the nature of the situation and lack of knowledge as to exactly what that situation was. During that time, Bondarevsky met Admiral Geoffrey Tolwyn, an encounter that would have long lasting effects on Bondarevsky’s career. Colonel Blair later rendezvoused with the Gettysburg and informed the crew they had been given a full pardon for their actions. Bondarevsky was eventually released and transferred aboard the Concordia where he completed one tour of duty before being promoted and transferred to the TCS Tarawa as its new Wing Commander.
Operation Back Lash
The TCS Tarawa was one of the nine original medium transports that were converted into Wake-Class Escort Carriers three-quarters of the way through their construction. They were intended as a quick fix for the devastating losses that ConFleet had suffered during 2666. Designed with several missions in mind, the Tarawa was the first escort carrier to be committed to a deep penetration raid. A raid straight into the Heart of the Empire, the Kilrah system.
Bondarevsky was one of the youngest Wing Commanders in the Confederation Fleet. He went from Second Class Flight Deck Mate to Wing Commander in eight years. He owed the speed of his ascent to his own skills and abilities as a pilot and a referral by Admiral Tolwyn to Admiral Banbridge certainly helped Banbridge wanted a talented officer to occupy the position as Wing Commander on the Tarawa. Tolwyn was not informed on why he had been asked to choose some of his best people for assignment to the Tarawa until later. Bondarevsky chose some of his colleagues from the Concordia to serve with him on the Tarawa, including Janet McCullough, Etienne Montclair and Janice Parker. There were other experienced personnel on the Tarawa to serve as mentors, however the vast majority of men and women serving aboard her on this first tour were graduates straight out of the Academy and training camps.
The first orders Bondarevsky gave to his new pilots was that they would be returning to the basics of space flight. They were to work their way from flight basics to advanced maneuvers. He hoped to teach them every trick he had learned in fighting the Kilrathi to ensure that as many of them as possible would survive the critical early missions. If they survived through them, their chances of survival increased tremendously.
In addition to the new recruits from the Academy, the commanding officer of the Tarawa, Commodore Thaddeus O’Brian was an officer who had been transferred from transport design and had no previous combat experience. The relationship between Commodore and Wing Commander was rocky from the moment Bondarevsky first landed on the Tarawa flying a Ferret. O’Brian thought Bondarevsky’s landing was “a bit shaky, yes indeed, a bit shaky it was.” Bondarevsky had been sight-seeing a bit too much and had landed a bit hard. However, Bondarevsky noted to himself, “Not a great landing, he had to agree, but it had nothing to do with shakiness.”
The first mission of the Tarawa was a cover that involved the redeployment of some of the best Confederation Marine units to a ground assault exercise at Khartoum Station. The First Marine Commando battalion, one of the most elite units in the Confederation, was part of this convoy as well. Svetlana Ivanova, Bondarevsky's former girlfriend, had become a member of the Commando battalion and was known as the "Talker" because of her role as air-to-ground coordinator. After meeting with the marine transports, the convoy turned around on 2667.157 and made a high speed run for Vukar Tag in the Vukar Tag Sector, where the marines were to stage an assault on the planet. The TCS Sevastapol joined the Tarawa before the jump into Vukar Tag.
The two escort carriers and marine transports launched a full scale assault against space and ground-based targets on the planet of Vukar Tag. The Sevastapol's fighters and bombers handled space-based threats while the Tarawa's wing were assigned atmospheric missions. The main target of the marine assault was the ancestral home of the Emperor's Mother, Dowager Empress Graknala. The structure was in Bondarevsky's own words "beautiful, almost like a fairy-tale medieval fortress of polished limestone, complete to minareted towers." The entire commando battalion was committed to taking it by direct assault. The assault and subsequent demolition of the fortress was captured on video and sent via burst signal to Kilrah. The Kilrathi listening post that sent the message was allowed to stay active for this specific purpose as an integral part of Operation Back Lash. Twelve hours after the assault on Vukar Tag began, the Tarawa, along with the commando battalion, were recalled to the Niven Sector where they were briefed on their true role in Operation Back Lash.
Operation Back Lash was an offensive planned in the six months prior to the assault on Vukar Tag by Confederation HQ in order to cause enough damage to the Kilrathi Imperial forces that it could possibly cause a dynastic civil war and give the Confederation an advantage. The taking of Vukar Tag was the opening move in the larger operation. TCS Concordia, TCS Wolfhound, TCS Trafalgar and TCS Gettysburg along with over seventy other Confederation ships, had massed in the Niven Sector in order to meet the Kilrathi response to the fortifying of Vukar Tag by Confederation forces. ConFleet was to ambush the Kilrathi fleet as it attempted its own planetary assault with the hopes of catching them geared entirely for space-to-ground operations and little to no expectation of a major fleet action.
The Tarawa had a unique role in Operation Back Lash as the main unit in Strike Force Valkyrie. Along with the TCS Intrepid under Captain Grierson, TCS Kagimasha under Captain Teng and the First Marine Commando battalion under Colonel Jim Merritt the task force was assigned the mission of penetrating into the Kilrah system itself and attacking Largkza, the second moon of Kilrah, which was known to be a massive military installation. The strike force used a set of jump lines that the Kilrathi did not know the Confederation were aware of. They were then to let the Kilrathi find the task force, thereby putting the Kilrathi in a dilemma. The situation at Vukar Tag demanded a response for the sake of honor but the strike force represented an interloper deep inside the Empire. The Confederation hope and actual result was for the Home Fleet to be split into two sections. Three carriers broke off to intercept the Tarawa while seven carriers continued to Vukar Tag. This gave the Confederation the numerical ratio it needed to increase the chances for success at Vukar Tag.
Bondarevsky allowed a lone Sartha to escape with footage of the strike force as per the mission guidelines, however, Commodore O'Brian had other ideas as he was more concerned with self-preservation instead of completing the mission as outlined by Banbridge. If not for a series of actions on the part of Captain Grierson following Bondarevsky's return to the Tarawa things could have gone very differently. Grierson's intervention pushed the task force to flank speed for the heart of the Empire.
The transit time from Niven until the reveal point deep within the Empire allowed Bondarevsky to further train his pilots and rekindle his romantic relationship with Captain Ivanova. The time allowed for further training was very important to Bondarevsky since he and the other senior officers believed their mission was essentially a one-way trip. He wanted the people under his command to still have the best chance of surviving the raid.
Raid on Kilrah
The attack on the Kilrathi homeworld began as soon as Strike Force Valkyrie entered the Kilrah system. The first Kilrathi response was more than twenty fighters and three corvettes that were met and destroyed by the Tarawa's fighters. During this action, Bondarevsky noticed the massive shipyard facilities on Largkza, the second moon of Kilrah that Admiral Banbridge had mentioned in the initial briefing as a primary target. Six carrier construction slips, each with a carrier nearing completion within, a cruiser construction yard as well as research and development facilities lay open to attack. Bondarevsky transmitted his gun camera footage back to the Tarawa. Largkza had been converted by the Kilrathi into a massive military base that would require considerable time to completely destroy. Colonel Merritt originally estimated 30 hours to fully mine and destroy all the targets.
After a tense moment between Merritt and O'Brian, the order was given to prepare for an assault on Largkza. The Intrepid and Kagimasha bombarded the surface of Largkza for an hour before a strike of eight Sabres and four Rapiers along with the ten landing craft was launched. Each Sabre was carrying four brand new Space-to-Ground Anti-Radar Submunition Missile each of which broke into 50 submunitions that locked onto individual radars, radio links, laser trackers, point defense guidance systems, and subspace transmitters." The large number of these missiles being launched required a special command system that was mounted on Montclair's Sabre. The system reassigned submunitions to priority targets if the initial ones were shot down. Fourteen hundred anti-matter warheads made their way to the surface. Hundreds were lost, but hundreds also broke through, knocking out a large portion of the Kilrathi defensive network. The landing craft then made their own assault to the surface.
As the Marines landed on Largkza, stealth fighters began an attack on the Tarawa. They had been launched from a fleet carrier that had arrived through a jump point on the opposite side of the system. Upon learning of the new contacts, O'Brian decided that withdrawal was the best decision, without the Marines on the ground. Bondarevsky got into a heated argument with O'Brian before the conversation ended with Bondarevsky terminating the communication.
Upon returning to the Tarawa, Bondarevsky headed straight for the bridge, however a terrible explosion shook the ship while he was en route. The bridge had suffered a Kilrathi kamikaze attack and the entire bridge crew was killed, including Commodore O'Brian, whose lower half was completely gone. Bondarevsky was then the ranking officer on the carrier and immediately set-up a temporary bridge in Flight Control and countermanded O’Brian’s withdrawal order. He wanted to make sure the marines had enough time to fully wire the moon and have a chance of returning. Bondarevsky brought the Tarawa and her escorts back around into a position to support the marines. Crown Prince Thrakhath commanded the Kilrathi fleet that was moving to intercept the Tarawa from the opposite side of the Kilrah system. One fleet carrier, two cruisers, four destroyers and two corvettes headed towards Strike Force Valkyrie while the other two carrier battle groups that had detached with Prince Thrakhath had been sent to other systems to cut off potential human escape routes.
Confederation forces held the Kilrathi at bay while the marines placed mines in six carriers, a cruiser assembly building and numerous other production facilities. During the evacuation, Bondarevsky witnessed Svetlana Ivanova's sacrificial death, exchanging last words with her before she detonated the mines after her landing craft had been hit during its ascent. The episode had long lasting emotional effects on Bondarevsky who never fully forgave himself for her death.
The raid destroyed the facilities on the Largkza including the six carriers, cruiser construction facilities, berths and a team of the Kilrathi's best designers who were visiting the installation at the time. Together with the victory the Confederation won at Vukar Tag at the same time, Operation Back Lash was the greatest Confederation victory since the destruction of K'Tithrak Mang in 2665 and one of the greatest of the entire war.
Through the use of the gas giant Igrathi in the Kilrah system, the Tarawa, with Bondarevsky in command, were able to elude Prince Thrakhath for some twenty hours. During that time, repairs were undertaken on both the Tarawa herself and the fighters on board. After the Tarawa lifted out of Igrathi's atmosphere it made a direct course for Kilrah itself. Using a Ferret and landing craft armed with "old style atomic" nuclear weapons as decoys, Bondarevsky used the Tarawa’s tractor beams on Kilrah to slingshot the Tarawa towards a jump point leading out of system. However during the unprecedented maneuver, the Kagimasha was lost when it collided with a Kilrathi fighter.
The tractor beam maneuver impressed even Prince Thrakhath who remarked that it was "damned good" and "brilliantly executed" but also an "exercise in futility." The jump point Bondarevsky had taken did not lead directly back to the Confederation so a stern chase against a heavy cruiser developed. Faced with the decision to either fight the cruiser or continue to the Jugara System, Bondarevsky chose to continue forward.
The Tarawa and Intrepid faced Prince Thrakhath's three heavy carriers in the Baragh System, one jump from the Jugara System. In the ensuing engagement, Intrepid was lost in a point-blank torpedo exchange with an enemy cruiser. Tarawa was subsequently rescued by the Concordia which had made the journey to Baragh after the Battle of Vukar Tag, to aid in the Tarawa's withdrawal. Admiral Tolwyn disobeyed direct orders and moved the Concordia out before Vukar Tag had been fully secured in order to aid in the rescue of the Tarawa. Bondarevsky respected and thought highly of Tolwyn for almost the rest of his life for this effort on the Admiral's part.
Rest & Refit on Earth
After returning to Confederation space, Captain Bondarevsky and Colonel Merritt received the Confederation Medal of Honor for their actions during the Kilrah Raid. TheTCS Tarawa was sent to dry dock for refit and repair, saved by public outcry after it was announced the ship was originally to be scrapped given her battle damage, while Bondarevsky became an instructor at the Academy for a short time, as well as learning about Kilrathi psychology at the Naval War College. During this period the holovid First to Kilrah was released. Despite being promised by the producers that it would be a “straight-forward documentary honoring those who had served,” the movie had little to do with the actual raid and instead spent most of the screen time on his tragic relationship with Svetlana. He took the royalties the producer had paid him for the holovid and donated every credit to a scholarship fund for the Marine and naval personnel lost in the raid.
The Sixth Battle of Munro
TCS Tarawa returned to service after undergoing almost a year of repair and refit. She was serving alongside the TCS Concordia and several other ships in reoccupying the Munro system, a critical jump nexus between both the Confederation and the Kilrathi Empire, when a cease-fire order was received. During the engagement a Kilrathi light carrier was destroyed, however, this action took place after Admiral Tolwyn had received the tentative cease-fire order. This deliberate action was used to secret him out of Confederation service and into a position to undertake a Free Corps mission into the Landreich several months later.
The False Armistice
Bondarevsky and Ian St. John accompanied Tolwyn to the armistice ceremony, to the irritation of Tolwyn's normal aides who thought they were being shunned from the historic event. Tolwyn had wanted to have two of his greatest pilots with him during the event. Following the ceremony, Bondarevsky brought Tarawa into its docking station for storage. He was hand delivered a note from Admiral Banbridge which read: “Never in the annals of the fleet has so much been accomplished by a ship such as yours. I am proud to have served with you. The name Tarawa will not be forgotten, God bless you all.” Kevin Tolwyn gave the commissioning pennant of the Tarawa to Bondarevsky for the day that he may need to hang it up again.
Following the Tarawa's decommissioning, Bondarevsky went to the Vacuum Breathers bar on Luna to meet with several former comrades. St John, Montclair and Bondarevsky all discussed the armistice with the Kilrathi when Kirha hrai Hunter nar Aussie, the Kilrathi who had sworn allegiance to Ian St. John almost fifteen years previously, entered the bar and caused a stir between the former military comrades and an academic named Dr. David Torg. The situation ended with Kevin Tolwyn entering and asking Bondarevsky, St. John and Montclair to join him at his uncle's home, Windward, on the Shetland Islands north of Scotland.
The Free Corps Mission
After taking a shuttle to Admiral Tolwyn's estate, Bondarevsky was surprised to see a notable collection of former Confederation officers sitting in Tolwyn's home. James Taggart was among them, who Bondarevsky had believed was dead until that moment. Tolwyn explained the situation that his court martial had been a way to remove him from the chain of command and put him in place to conduct for the Free Corps mission out of the Landreich. Four Wake-Class Escort Carriers were to be sold to the Landreich along with fighters and spare parts. These forces were to be used to mount a reconnaissance mission into Kilrathi space and search for a rumored secret construction facility deep in Kilrathi space or other signs of the Kilrathi breaking the armistice. TCS Tarawa, TCS Wake, TCS Normandy and TCS Iwo were the carriers chosen to be sold. Bondarevsky enlisted with Tolwyn and made preparations for the Tarawa to leave.
The small fleet left Confederation space and headed to the military headquarters of the Landreich, the Hell Hole System. After an introduction to President Kruger, Bondarevsky was given the mission of infiltrating Kilrathi space with new Confederation signals intelligence technology and a new friend to run it. Admiral Vance Richards was the head of Confederation Intelligence and a legend amongst the Confederation Fleet. The D 3S 5 system was the latest Confederation technology used to listen in on Kilrathi burst transmissions. The information gained from D 3S 5 was used to discover the Hakaga fleet in Hari space on the farside of the Empire from the Confederation. James Taggart and Ian St. John later entered directly into the Hari System and recorded information on the Hakaga-Class Heavy Carriers under construction.
Bondarevsky took the Tarawa deeper into Kilrathi space while waiting for the return of James Taggart and Ian St. John. At one point he went so far as to land the escort carrier on a greenhouse gas world under a cliff overhang. The subterfuge of hiding the carriers worked until Taggart and St. John arrived in the same system. The Kilrathi had already moved into the system days before and had forced the Tarawa and Normandy to hide on the planet to avoid detection. When the Terran forces exchanged the vital information about the Hakaga fleet a small battle erupted during which Ian St. John was killed by a salvo of IFF missiles.
The Tarawa and Normandy returned to the Landreich following an intense stern chase with the Kilrathi. Upon return, Bondarevsky demanded to rejoin Confederation forces then assembling to counter the Hakaga fleet’s move towards Sol. Kruger instead awarded Bondarevsky the Order of Nova with Diamonds and promoted him to a Commodore in the Landreich Navy. Bondarevsky was not amused and wanted to join Admiral Tolwyn at Sirius. Kruger had to defend the Landreich and the four Wake carriers were his only chance to make a stand at Hell Hole.
The Second Battle of Hell Hole
Bondarevsky the participated in one of the unique engagements of the Kilrathi War. Four Wake-Class escort carriers conducted a fleet action with a Kilrathi heavy carrier in the Second Battle of Hell Hole. The result was the loss of the TCS Gallipoli and crippling damage inflicted upon a Kilrathi heavy carrier. It was the only time that escort and heavy carriers engaged in a direct fleet action during the war. During the engagement, Tarawa was damaged when Kruger used an unorthodox maneuver to fool the Kilrathi and produce the fleet action. He jumped between Hell Hole and the neighboring system quickly in his own ship and nicked the Tarawa coming back through. The damage was not severe but did buckle several bulkheads on the carrier.
End Game During the Battle of Earth
After the battle at Hell Hole, Bondarevsky convinced Kruger to let the remaining carriers run to Earth’s rescue. Kruger led the fleet and they arrived in Sol just in time to destroy the cruisers assigned to launch 500-megaton Strotnium-90-clad warheads into the Earth’s upper atmosphere. Antimatter warheads were launched just before Landreich forces could intercept them. More than a dozen cities on Earth were vaporized as a result, however the planet was saved from total annihilation by the rapid pace in which Kruger brought the forces from the Landreich. His high speed approach to the final jump point to Sol became legendary in its violation of jump point policy and jump entry velocity. By violating essentially every regulation in the book, the Landreich forces were able to prevent the complete destruction of Earth.
End of the Terran-Kilrathi War
Following the Battle of Earth, Bondarevsky was given command of Destroyer Squadron 67 which included the TCS Ajax, a Tallahassee-Class Cruiser, TCS Sheffield and TCS Conventry, both Southampton-Class Destroyers. They formed the screening force for the TCS Victory.
During the Battle of Loki, in which the TCS Behemoth was destroyed, the Conventry struck a Kilrathi mine and inflicted heavy damage to the bridge. (Bondarevsky himself recalled it being a missile in 2670.) The weapons breached the bridge, killing almost everyone instantaneously. It was only with the heroic efforts of Janet McCullough that Bondarevsky survived with only the loss of his right arm. His injury caused him to be at Moonbase Tycho when the Temblor Bombing of Kilrah occurred and he heard the news of the raid on ISN.
Following discharge from ConFleet, Bondarevsky retired to a recently purchased seaside home in Odessa with Janet McCullough. They remained close friends and McCullough was a faithful aid to Bondarevsky. However, no romantic relationship developed between the two.
In the Service of the Free Republic of the Landreich
In 2670, Bondarevsky received a call from Admiral Vance Richards for a proposition to join the Free Republic of the Landreich Navy (FRLN). Bondarevsky met Admirals Richards and Tolwyn on Moonbase Tycho on 2670.275. After a brief conversation, Bondarevsky, along with Janet McCullough, joined the FRLN. They took the recently-refurbished former Confederation cruiser TCS Andromache purchased by the Landreich, now FRLS Themistocles back to Landreich space. During the voyage Bondarevsky befriended a young Lieutenant named Aengus Harper, who was operating as the shuttle pilot for the Themistocles. Harperlater transferred to the fighter wing commanded by Bondarevsky.
The Presidential Palace of the Landreich was located in the city of Newburg on the planet Landreich in the Landreich System. It was here that the the recent Landreich recruits met with President Kruger to discuss their mission. Bondarevsky learned that part of the reason for his enlistment was to help bring a Kilrathi Bhantkara-Class Carrier, disabled a year before in the Vaku System during a fight with two Confederation cruisers, back on-line. A small task force centered around FRLS Independence, formerly TCS Tarawa, was to be sent to the Vaku system to begin repairs on the KIS Karga. The mission was codenamed "Project Goliath."
The small task force entered the Vaku System on 2670.313 after being led there by the civilian who had found the derelict, Captain Wenona Springweather. Securing the derelict proved to be difficult. The carrier itself was in a close orbit of a brown dwarf and within the star’s radiation belt. After conducting a brief survey, the salvage crews were called off when survivors were discovered and informed the task force that the Karga’s self-destruct system was still active and would initiate if power was restored. The survivors had made it to the barely habitable moon of Vaku VII, Vaku VIIa. Vaku VIIa or "Nargrast" as it was known to the survivors was an extremely hostile place, but it could support life, barely. The Kilrathi and Confederation survivors were forced to work together lest they all die on the moon's surface. Throughout the rest of Project Goliath, several of the Kilrathi and Confederation survivors proved indispensable in overcoming various hurdles facing the refitting effort.
The refit of the carrier itself took several months with Bondarevsky focused primarily on training his pilots with the new Kilrathi fighters salvaged from the Karga, with the assistance of some of the Kilrathi survivors. Jorkad lan Mraal, the senior pilot among the survivors was a major aid in constructing simulators for the Terrans that replicated the Kilrathi fighters accurately. Commander Alexandra Travis named Bondarevsky’s command, Flight Wing 137 (FW-137), "The Black Cats" during a Christmas party on 2670.358 (Christmas Eve) in the Flight Wing Lounge on FRLS Karga. The name was inspired by a present from Kevin Tolwyn and the pilots of the Independence, a black cat named "Thrakhath."
On 2671.011, The Guild's (an organized crime syndicate) improvised escort carrier Bonadventure staged an attack on the FRLS Karga using information obtained from Captain Springweather. The goal was to disable the tender Sindri which was providing power and other support to the Karga and then seize control of the disabled carrier. Bondarevsky’s pilots, using a mixture of Terran and Kilrathi fighters, were able to fight off the Guild ships, however, FRLS Sindri was destroyed during the attack. Karga was further along in the refitting process than Zachary Banfeld had anticipated as its shields were functional at a marginal protective level. Along with the Sindri, Lt. Eric "Viking" Jensson was also lost during the attack. Later that day, Admiral Tolwyn held a brief ceremony on the flight deck where the Karga was renamed FRLS Mjollnir in honor of the Sindri. Both ships' names are derived from ancient Norse mythology where Sindri was the dwarf whom had made the powerful, but flawed, hammer Mjollnir for the god Thor.
On 2671.030-31, Mjollnir’s engines were brought online and the carrier was moved into orbit around Vaku VIIa / Nargrast.
Prelude to Baka Kar
On 2671.033, Bondarevsky along with Lt. Harper made a fly-by examination of the Mjollnir. They flew the shuttle away from the carrier in order to get a better view, "Take the scenic route... I want to get a better look at the old girl... a wider view, something with fewer rivets and weld marks." Upon reaching a suitable distance Bondarevsky continued with degrading comments about the refitted carrier. "Very nice, Mr. Harper... From out here you can almost picture her as a warship, and not a collection of repairs waiting to fall apart." After receiving a scolding from Harper, Bondarevsky's attitude toward the project improved. "Okay, you win. From here on out she's the best ship in the fleet, bar none... But I hope you won't mind if I try not to sneeze too hard. I'm still afraid of what might happen... Take us home, Lieutenant... Before you have me convinced the old lady is actually as good as you seem to think she is."
At 1715 hours CST, on .033, Kevin Tolwyn briefed the Project Goliath staff on the latest developments in the Landreich. Ukar dai Ragark lak Haka had acquired the Hvar'kann-Class Dreadnought KIS Vorgath. President Kruger ordered Mjollnir to make a deep penetration raid into the Baka Kar System to attack the dreadnought while it is being refitted at Asharazhal, the massive space station orbiting Baka Kar. Bondarevsky proposed that they could use the Mjollnir's weapons to attack the Vorgath. This spawned the idea among the Goliath team of entering Kilrathi space through deception. They were to fly "False Colors" by broadcasting Kilrathi IFF codes to achieve entry into the Baka Kar system. This would then allow the Mjollnir to get close enough and for Bondarevsky's wing to carry out operations against both the Vorgath and Asharazhal.
On 2671.036, the Mjollnir battle group prepared to jump out of the Oecumene System en route to Baka Kar System. The final task before heading into Kilrathi space was to unload the civilians who had been working on the refitting operation. Bondarevsky stepped in to aid "Sparks" McCullough when one civilian, Armando Diaz, caused a brief scene on the flight deck over not being able to board the final shuttle leaving the Mjollnir. Diaz was a Major in the Landreich Armed Forces and Bondarevsky reminded him of this fact. He owed it to "a breakdown in communications... Apparently you weren't informed that the Admiral had requested you to stay on with the other computer experts from your team."
On 2671.041, the Mjollnir arrived in the Vordan System where Bondarevsky participated in the hijacking of a Kilrathi shuttle that had flown over to Mjollnir to confirm its identity. Using the hijacked shuttle, a mixed crew of Terrans and Kilrathi moved to seize the picket ship KIS Wexarrargh that was guarding the jump point to Baka Kar. During the firefight, Alexandra Travis was wounded on her left side. Bondarevsky performed first aid. In the process of removing her body armor and dressing the wounds, Bondarevsky braced himself by placing his hand on her breast. The humorous exchange that followed resulted in a dinner date in the Landreich should they both survive the coming action. Bondarevsky would soon start to see her as a love interest.
Battle of Baka Kar
On 2671.042 at 1140 hours CST, Bondarevsky gave the final pre-battle briefing to his flight wing. With Travis out of action, due to injuries sustained in the boarding action, Bondarevsky decided to put on a flight suit and join the Strakha squadron in combat. His original assignment had been on the Gratha Command and Control Craft that would be co-ordinating the carrier's Alpha Strike.
The attack called for the Strakhas of VF-401 "Shadow Cats" to launch with cloaks engaged before the other fighters launched, in order to complete a very important aspect of the battle plan. They were to position themselves close to shield emitter arrays in order to weaken shield coverage around Vorgath and the massive space station Asharazhal. Anti-Aerospace and heavy weapons turrets were secondary targets.
- At 1148 hours (CST), Bondarevsky launched in Strakha 800 and moved with the rest of the Shadow Cats toward their primary targets insystem.
- At 1216 hours (CST), the codeword for to commence the attack, "Ragnarok", was given and Bondarevsky and the Shadow Cats commenced the attack. Eight Strakhas in VF-401 attacked eight shield emitters which immediately caused huge gaps in shield coverage to emerge on the Vorgath and Asharazhal space station.
- At 1224 hours (CST), Bondarevsky continued to strike at shield emitters and heavy weapons turrets on the Vorgath.
- At 1238 hours (CST), the Strakhas continued to strike at the heavy weapons and shield emitters while the rest of the Black Cats are engaged with Ragark's various fighter squadrons. Mjollnir succeeded in breaching the armor around the massive planetary bombardment missile magazine at the front of the Vorgath. The dreadnought was heavily damaged, but remained functional.
- At 1255 hours (CST), Bondarevsky completed a refueling and rearming from a Kofar Resupply Shuttle and prepared to engage in a rearguard action against two Kilrathi cruisers that were closing on the Mjollnir. In order to gain the best chance of success for Mjollnir to escape Bondarevsky sent the Black Cats in a final strike against the two incoming cruisers.
- By 1345 hours (CST), Bondarevsky had ordered his fighters against the cruisers three times. The cruisers were now acquiring a fighter escort from the planet of Baka Kar, however, one had suffered a hit in its maneuvering drive and was falling behind.
- At 1349 hours (CST), a combined strike of Strakhas and Paktahns disable the second cruiser and it goes offline at 1351 hours. However, at the same moment the rest of Ragark's fleet jumps in system. Four escort carriers, ten cruisers, and twenty-six destroyers against the remains of Mjollnir's battle group and fighter wing.
Bondarevsky entered the CIC on the Mjollnir at 1527 hours. Admiral Tolwyn had chosen to keep his fighters on deck and attempt to break through the Kilrathi fleet. Soon afterwards, President Kruger jumped into Baka Kar with a task force centered around four escort carriers of his own. The Battle of Baka Kar concluded with a cease-fire at 1534 hours (CST).
Return to the Landreich
On 2671.056 President Kruger gave a rousing speech onboard the Mjollnir. At its conclusion, Bondarevsky had an awkward conservation with Admiral Tolwyn discussing his return to Confederation space to take the helm of the Strategic Readiness Agency. This was to be the last time Bondarevsky would see the man who was his benefactor and mentor for the previous five years in a friendly manner. Their next meeting took place a short time later as the heads of opposing fleets during the brief Confederation-Landreich War.
Landreich-Confederation War (2671-72)
Open warfare breaks out between the Free Republic of the Landreich and the Terran Confederation. Promoted to Rear Admiral, Bondarevsky leads the Landreich's escort carrier fleet, ultimately ending the conflict in a strategic draw with the help of Vance Richards, who had come out of hiding following his disappearance during the Battle of Baka Kar.
Rear Admiral Jason Bondarevsky is retired from active military service as of 2701.