Date: 15 Jan 2010 07:52 Title: Chapter 12
Great finish up to the story. A nice wrap and a flavour for some of the future events of the UT universe to boot. Bluefin is getting a new brief and it doesn't sound too cosy. Gibraltar might get a little downtime thanks to strings pulled by Akinola but it is a sad precursor to events down the line as Ramirez looks forward to her new command, Sandhurst will have to seek a new XO [one closer than it seems at this story's end].
Big scene with Akinola and Maxwell. I wondered why not your protagonist Sandhurst delivering the speech to Maxwell. But once Akinola started speaking I understood the guilt trip means more from him and of course defeat at the hands of the ageing cutter is bound to hurt and is one sure fire way to punish and eat up Maxwell.
I wondered at the end why Sandhurst wanted a tug a little further afield - it becomes clear when he uses his leverage at Stabase 371 to get his ship refitted once more when rightly it shouldn't. I like that you address that anomoly. It made sense in the wartime effort to get a Connie back up and running. But the argument to continue to do so loses effect after the war. So a neat way to get around that. But it won't be the last of the Big G's battles. And for some reason when Nowark starts talking about taking care of the ship and its being on its last legs, I'm reminded of the Battlestar Galactica when the writing is on the wall and they can foresee the last mission. One wonders is the writing on the wall for the Gibraltar? Is it's time running out? Quite a note to end on. A terrific, terrific read. I know. I tend to run on, all commentary of win and positive - but that's only because the story warrents such high praise and gave such enjoyment to read.
Here we see Sandhurst actually getting sentimental about the old girl, seeing as all he’s been through in the past year since taking command. He’s just hoping against hope that he can keep Gibraltar in once piece, that perhaps their luck will change…
Again, many thanks for your thoughtful and insightful reviews. I’m very pleased you enjoyed the story. I’d envisioned it as a shorter tale than most of my Gibraltar stories, more fluid and action-packed, while still endeavoring to give the various characters their due.
Date: 15 Jan 2010 07:36 Title: Chapter 11
Akinola raised his in a toast, “To both our ‘old girls.’ They may no longer be ships of the line, but they’ll always get the job done and bring us home.” A terrific sentiment and I'll raise my glass by the way for two of the finest ships ever flown.
Any two captains meeting is a big moment for any UT fans. For the two to be Akinola and Sandhurst who have a lot in common is no less spectacular - especially given the wariness with which Akinola views the calls and actions of Sandhurst. Have to say though that Sandhurst almost put him back in his box with his walk a light year in my boots speech. Great stuff.
This is a case of two capable starship captains who just happen to differ greatly in their outlook and their operational tactics, though both of them can be counted on to get the job done, each in his own way.
Date: 15 Jan 2010 07:27 Title: Chapter 10
“Albacore-class,” Maxwell groused, his voice tinged with reluctant admiration. “Damned things are just giant impulse engines with running lights and a registry.”
Another quote from this chapter worth repeating. Love this rather apt description of the Albacore class. Succinct and very true. Boils down to one mean machine with the ability to play Twister.
Maxwell calls 'em like he sees 'em, and you have to admit, his observations regarding the Bluefin and her kindred are spot on!
Date: 15 Jan 2010 07:25 Title: Chapter 10
“If I’d wanted to play it safe,” Brin replied laconically, “I’d have joined a slipshod high-g gas mining operation run by the Ferengi.”
There's always something quotable in your stuff. Hee hee. You should come out with a 'quote a day' calendar. Akinola being stubborn and wanting to take on the boarding party lead himself. ha! Maxwell doesn't know what's hit him.
Heh... a quote of the day calendar. That's a terrific idea!
Date: 15 Jan 2010 07:18 Title: Chapter 9
"She's damaged and in over her head," Lar'ragos muttered sardonically. "It must be Tuesday." LOL! And so true!
And a turn around for the books with Sandhurst's mysterious rescue. Intriguing. Fantastic action again as The Buefin engages the enemy and Ramirez and Pava take it out. Brutal and frantic and exciting to read.
It could be disconcerting if/when your greatest enemy rescues you from the clutches of death. Well, it might be... if you remembered any of it. ;-)
Date: 15 Jan 2010 07:10 Title: Chapter 8
Yuk! Remind me to never cross Sandhurst or corner him. It seems that Ashok isn't the only one who can surprise people with his ability to kill. Sandhurst is inventive! Cold and deadly, but effective and inventive. Gotta feel for Pell and her predicament. She doesn't go down without trying to fight. Just her tactics were anticipated. But then Maxwell is a credible mind with a raft of his own tricks.
Sandhurst's creativity here was born of desperation, and what he was forced to do will be another blight upon his soul. And as I mentioned earlier, Maxwell is a strategic and tactical genius. Poor Pell is simply out of her league in this case.
Date: 15 Jan 2010 06:59 Title: Chapter 7
The tables are turning badly on the Gibraltar. Maxwell is going for the full impact and taking everything he can first. Terrific action sequence. Short but not scant on detail. And the image of the three ships all in a line one hunting the other hunting the other is quite a visual in my head.
Strauss and Ramirez do share some qualities. Faith and loyalty in their captian and crew being perhaps the most defining here. Strauss holds Akinola to his previous judgement and points out succintly that Ramirez had no issue with Sandhurst's call. Once again, it seems that the call Sandhurst makes is 'disapproved of' by another captian. Poor guy can't win at times.
Sandhurst has a history of making controversial decisions that other captains take issue with... but say what you will, he gets the job done.
Maxwell is one of the finest tactical minds Starfleet has produced in the last generation, and despite the disadvantages of his old BoP, he's still undeniably dangerous.
Date: 15 Jan 2010 06:39 Title: Chapter 6
Oh Pava is priceless - the other one I'll be seeing in a few days! - witty, dry and very dark. Love it. Also gotta love Ramirez and her absolute faith in Sandhurst and the Gibraltar showing up. Real heartwarming stuff that. Things worked out grand in the end, no big miscommunications [well not much]. Love the approach the Bluefin and her commanding officers take to things - checking for bio-hazards int ransports and everything. Pros with experience. Another excellent chpater full of win.
Thanks! Yes, the Bluefin's crew has certainly leared the necessity of caution during their time together. As for Ramirez, sometimes I wonder if her seeming confidence in Gibraltar is faith... or fatalism.
Date: 15 Jan 2010 06:32 Title: Chapter 5
Great to see Akinola and Gralt interaction always. I'm always impressed by the details of the technology and the work process that you put into your stories. You give a real sense of Gralt being an engineer here, a real sense of Sandhurst fixing the ship, a real sense of combat with varied weapons and effects. Really that kind of detail that just sweeps the reader along in the ride is just so damned impressive. Atop which is the character interaction again. In the case of Maxwell, no character interaction but some character reflection that really stands up to scrutiny and fits canon and character traits too. I also liked the way here and in the previous chapter there is reflection on the growing and changing nature of the Maquis because of the war and its new or hardened members. This is paralled then in Ramirez's words about how Starfleet have changed too and veterans now at fighting and duking it out. Which of course, only means that both sides are going to fight harder and grittier and give no surrender.
We know have Maxwell en route as backup to the Maquis, the Bluefin seekig out the Maquis, the Gibraltar back up and running once more onto the fight and then we have Pava and Ramirez in the Maquis vessel. I foresee a big showdown and the potential for mistaken identity and some friendly fire. Great set up.
You foresaw quite a bit, and very accurately, too! :-) I very much appreciate the detailed feedback on this story. Thank you for the kind words regarding the details, as I worked hard to make the story flow while still fleshing out the characters and plot.
Date: 15 Jan 2010 06:18 Title: Chapter 4
Great tactics from the Bluefin as usual we expect something a little creative from them. Great sense created of the Bluefin crew working together and in their style.
Then the Gibraltar crew and their own style too. Ramirez and Pava tag teaming an interrogation! That's time to fess up if ever! I wonder if Lightner crumbling before they expected is his giving false information. Or maybe he just sees sense and tells the truth.
Of course, we are use to Sandhurst making difficult decisions and getting down and gritty when the time calls for it. But you've just gotta admire his courage and determination to go through with the repairs knowing the risks he is taking and the harm he is inflicting upon himself. The fact that he expects no less of his crew means to say he expects no less if not more of himself. Once again, Sandhurst shows how tough he is and stubborn to boot.
Sandhurst is very conflicted over that particular necessity of command... ordering someone to their death. In this case he chooses instead to endanger himself, and then ignores it when Pell tries to point that out to him. It's a gut-check and another learning experience for a new captain.
Date: 15 Jan 2010 06:06 Title: Chapter 3
Don't know how it happened but I got left in the midst of this story. Re-reading the first two chapters was a joyful revisit of zippy humour, great character interaction, and shit hitting the fan as The Rock holds off the Maquis and tries every desperate gamble available to keep on surviving the odds. Then we get to see Ashok here kick ass in his very own style. Ashok gets more badass the more we learn about him. Love how his athletic career is what makes him such a deadly foe.
Thanks for the review and the kind words! :-) Yeah, Ashok can be very dangerous when it's necessary, but the guy's a pacifist at heart, and agonizes over such deeds. And yes, the shit hits the fan at supersonic velocities in this particular story.
Date: 04 Dec 2009 03:46 Title: Chapter 6
I imagine the folks of the Bluefin aren't used to getting breaks like that. It has to be a rare thing for Border Patrol. They were right to be wary.
Pava ATE the antenna? Hasn't he heard that it's better to save in case he gets hungry later?
Ha! Pava's never been a delayed-gratification sort of guy anyway. ;-)
Date: 04 Dec 2009 03:37 Title: Chapter 5
Uuuuggghhhhh, a Bird-of-Prey on the way and the crews of the ships for the moment none the wiser. This can't be good, particularly given who's at the helm.
Once again, Sandhurst proves that he is willing to go balls to the wall to save his people and his ship. His rank is well earned for certain. Pell is no slouch, either, but I have yet to see a Bajoran woman who is!
Donald's a determined man when it comes to his ship and crew... though under the circumstances I'm not sure that's to his advantage right now.
Date: 04 Dec 2009 03:29 Title: Chapter 4
Lightner really isn't going to be happy to find out his brother is involved in all of this, is he? I suppose in some ways, though, he knows that ship sailed a long time ago, at least he seems to. Very creative use of the tractor beam, there. It's always the tactical details that really make your action scenes stand out. Well done!
Much obliged. :-) Desperate times breed creativity, especially where the Border Dogs are concerned. And yes, Lightner is going to be a bit... peeved at his brother.
Date: 04 Dec 2009 03:20 Title: Chapter 3
It was really fun to see Ashok get some action in this time around. I knew the Bolian had it in him. And wow, Ro and Maxwell, eh? This really is going to be one hell of a bumpy ride for Sandhurst and crew. Ouch!
Yeah, there are definitely some Maquis big-guns involved in this caper, which doesn't bode too well for our heroes! Thanks for the review!
Date: 01 Dec 2009 01:50 Title: Chapter 2
Oh, good! It has been a long time since I've come across a satisfying Maquis tale. Already, I'm totally hooked and enjoying the crossover aspect as well. I have a feeling these two captains will have a lot to talk about once they're able to grab a moment. I also have a feeling that will be a while in coming.
Oh, you have no idea... ;-)
Date: 01 Dec 2009 01:42 Title: Chapter 1
You weren't kidding when you said this next installment jumped right into the action. What a great start! I really don't like to imagine what it took for Pava to overpower an Andorian. The antennae in the teeth said it all.
Pava does what he has to in order to win. Often, it isn't pretty... but it's nearly always effective. Thanks for the review.
Date: 13 Nov 2009 23:05 Title: Chapter 11
NICE argument between Sandhurst and Akinola. Great tension and good points from both men. Culminating in a shared drink ... nice moment.
Akinola had to determine for himself what kind of captain Sandhurst was. Once that was established, the two could be cordial, but not before. Akinola still doesn't agree with how Sandhurst went about his duties, but he can't argue that it was a job that needed to be done.
I'm glad you enjoyed that particular scene, as it took me a couple of tries to craft it to my satisfaction.
Date: 13 Nov 2009 22:53 Title: Chapter 8
That was epic (and really gross). Sandhurst is a crazy genius. I love the EMH-2's reaction, too.
I also loved the firefight scene with Lightner. I like the kid, he's got spunk.
Pell isn't doing so well with this command, is she?
Excellently written chapter.
Sandhurst was crazy desperate, and these actions will come back to haunt him. The Maquis don't often put a bounty on someone's head, but in Donald's case, they'll make an exception.
Lightner does have spunk, and for obvious reasons, he really dislikes the Maquis.
Pell's trying, but she's up against one of the best tactical minds Starfleet has produced in the last hundred years. She's quite simply out of her league.
Thank you kindly for the terrific review!
Date: 13 Nov 2009 22:36 Title: Chapter 5
I hope Sandhurst is all right. He's brave and dedicated, I'll give him that. Good stuff with Pell's quiet concern for him and then the craziness happening on the Bluefin. And Ashok abhors physical violence? Nice touch, there. I've seen him kick ass in two stories now. Nice to know he hates to have to do it.
Ashok will do what he has to when the situation warrants, but he doesn't have to like it. Thanks for reading.
Date: 13 Nov 2009 22:26 Title: Chapter 3
Go Ashok! I still think he's the most badass chief engineer ever. Such a great character.
Interesting to see Sandhurst trying to reconcile the Command part of him with the engineer and all around good guy part of him.
Oh, and this is Lightner's ship! Should get interesting.
Yes, Sandhurst is still learning to grasp the occassionally nasty necessities of command decisions.
And interesting... yeah, that's one word for it. ;-)
Date: 13 Nov 2009 22:23 Title: Chapter 2
"...And then Bluefin and Gibraltar are going to make these sorry sons-of-bitches wish they’d selected a different life path.”
And with that, I'm hooked. Great stuff.
Thanks. Sandhurst & Company are fortunate to have as experienced a captain as Akinola coming to their aid.