FreeFleet_Battle2 wording cover War's Reward


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The Second Kalu War rages across known space.

The newly formed Union undergoes it’s first baptism, the baptism of war.
The Free Fleet is barely holding the line against the Kalu. Salchar and the other commanders of the Free Fleet have one goal. Survive.

As war rages politics and power brokering are at work behind the scenes in the Union.

Even if the Free Fleet survives the war, will they survive it’s aftermath?


Keep reading for an excerpt from War’s Reward.

In it the song Don’t Stop Me Now is used. This copy can be copied and pasted anywhere, the lyrics used in the book are reduced so as to not infringe on copyright.

Now that’s over, I’d suggest listening to this:


            Tonight I’m gonna have myself a real good time I feel alive and the world it’s turning inside out Yeah!
I’m floating around in ecstasy So don’t stop me now don’t stop me ‘Cause I’m having a good time having a good time.

            The music started as Wing Commander Tyler Smith applied power to his jumper’s engines.

He’d been a pilot of the United States Air Force at one time. That was a lifetime ago. Now he was the most senior multiple wormhole creating fighter craft that harassed Kalu ships for the last year. They were known by everyone as the much simpler and refined, jumpers, or jump-fighters. He also loved looking to rock, metal and anything that he could play loud, mutter along with and shoot some Kalu along to.

“Commander, is that really what I think it is?” A Wing Commander that hadn’t flown with Smith before asked.

Instead of answering Smith relayed the music through his headset. He did it so much he had a pre-set control for it.

So don’t stop me now don’t stop me ‘Cause I’m having a good time having a good time

            Wormhole projectors were revealed from their armored hatches.

“Alright ladies and gents, it looks like the heavies will be giving us a nice umbrella for all the incoming rain. I say that we make good use of it. Jumpers, let’s spin the hell out of her, wing commanders check coordinates and let’s get this damn show on the road!”

They had already pre-set their jumps, it took him a few moments to okay them. A massive wormhole, the kind that allowed War-station to pass from system to system appeared right in front of the Kalu. Anything that passed into the wormhole didn’t reappear on the other side, neither did laser fire.

Meanwhile the fighters and bombers pressed onward to close with the Kalu. Jumpers made their wormholes, draining their capacitors and dashing through the event horizon.

I’m a shooting star leaping through the skies He was on the other side of the event horizon, and damn close to a Star Destroyer. He fired his rail gun, dropped a missile and hammered his acceleration away from the Kalu ship.

Like a tiger defying the laws of gravity He whooped as his missile slammed into the side of the star-destroyer. he sent a silent thank-you to Felix and his minions who’d made their missiles smart enough to realize when they were too close to star-burst into their multiple warheads and instead act like a single bomb. The Kalu Star Destroyer bulged out as if something was trying to burrow out for a moment. The hull gave up and a cloud of expanding ship parts and Kalu resided where the Star Destroyer had been.
I’m a racing car passing by like Lady Godiva Smith already had another target, his eyes had lingered on the star destroyer for maybe a half-second.

Jumpers weren’t meant for atmosphere, they didn’t have wings and their maneuvering jets were too weak, but in space. In space they danced on a pin.

Smith spun and turned, changing his trajectory, a Star Warrior had him. He let rip with a burst of rail gun, stitching up his target as he gained, dodging to the sides, spinning as he did so and moving in three dimensions as if he was born in space not on Earth.
I’m gonna go go go

He spun backwards, using his engines to break and throw another trajectory in. He spun around again, his racks open and his missile ready. He fired the missile.
There’s no stopping me

“What’s that, two ships in three seconds?” Someone asked.

“Eyes on the prize ladies, gents and creatures!” Smith said.

An alert showed the wormhole had stopped, a good number of the Kalu had been able to swerve around the Wormhole, but a number hadn’t.

As the wormhole dropped, bombers started releasing their payloads, multi-warhead missiles dotted the map rushing to meet the Kalu’s ships.

Smith looked away as near-miss alerts came in, he jinked, dived and swerved, rotating the entire way.

“Fucking swarm!” Smith said, heading towards the front of the Kalu formation, coming right behind an unsuspecting Star-warrior.

That’s why they call me Mister Fahrenheit
I’m trav’ling at the speed of light

            He mated his capacitors with his rail gun, sending four plasma bolts into the back of the Star-warrior.
I wanna make a supersonic man out of you Smith muttered the last line, a smile on his face, his hits landing right in the Star-warrior’s engine.

The warrior went up in a rippling blast, giving Smith some room from the Kalu, by the mere fact he’d been flying close enough that the swarm had been around the damned thing.

“Ladies and gents of the bombers and fighters to my front, it seems I’m bringing a party to you, could you give me a hand please?” Smith asked, conversational, music playing in the background.

Don’t stop me now
I’m having such a good time
I’m having a ball

            “Glad to help Commander Smith,” Someone said, sounding amuses, Smith got a trajectory line, he tilted, powering his engines towards it. It was none too soon as bombers missiles went streaking past him. He turned, using bombs to break his acceleration. He’d be crushed by the gravitational forces if he wasn’t in the gel-cocoon.

But he was and had the greatest seat in the house for seven missiles crashing into his following swarm, lighting them up from the inside, turning them from a mass into piecemeal.

The bombers and fighters raced past Smith, inertia carrying them through the Kalu formation, they dove and jinked, firing their guns and unleashing their missiles on the Kalu ships and swarms that chased them.

Don’t stop me now
If you wanna have a good time
Just give me a call

            Smith grinned and pushed his engines and bombs to maximum. He braked finally and started building momentum. He sung along as he dove down and across, putting his heading right at a Star-Destroyer.

Looks like they’re trying to get their fighters out, got to do something about that.

Don’t stop me now (’cause I’m having a good time)
Don’t stop me now (yes I’m having a good time)
I don’t want to stop at all… yeah!

            His rail gun shredded the fighters, two missiles streaked in for the kill.

I’m a rocket ship on my way to Mars
On a collision course
I am a satellite I’m out of control
I am a sex machine ready to reload

            The ship lost it’s forward and lower sections.

Like an atom bomb about to
Oh oh oh oh oh explode

            The ship seemed to listen to the words of one of the greatest bands and singers ever. If anyone said differently, well Smith would be having words with them!

The ship exploded, with one Commander Smith a tad too close for comfort, he got an actual push from the whole ship going up with all of it’s ammunition.

He tumbled, he fought for control, his head pounding from gravity and his own blood going where it shouldn’t and not being where it needed to be.

I’m burning through the sky Yeah!
Two hundred degrees

            He pulled his ship up and around, stitching a Star-Destroyer with plasma, he’d forgotten to change back, but the engines of the ship cut out after his run.

That’s why they call me Mister Fahrenheit

A laser caught his armored shell.

I’m trav’ling at the speed of light

            Smith jinked weaved and turned.

There was four Kalu looked like they were just leaving the Star-Destroyer. They didn’t see the missile till it split and well there weren’t any Kalu to shoot Smith in the ass.

I wanna make a supersonic woman of you

            Don’t stop me

            Smith dove down onto a moving swarm, War-Station had turned to present its front. It would go right through the Kalu formation to give every gun a target.

That said, it didn’t need the suicidal little Kalu fighter bastards ramming into it’s shield.
Don’t stop me

Smith dropped onto an angle with the Kalu fighters and fired several missiles. The Kalu had no target locking mechanism.

The waves of destruction came like an unknown tide, washing away a swathe of Kalu fighters.
Don’t stop me

Another Star-warrior was shooting at him, Smith weaved, turned and accelerated. His inertia took him past the Star-Warrior. he lined up on another Star-Warrior.

An alert came in moments later, a bomber dropping two missiles into the ship.
Hey hey hey!

He accelerated away from the target in search for another as the Star-Warrior shuddered and drifted, it’s engines out and most of one side missing.

Don’t stop me
Don’t stop me

Ooh ooh alright

            Alerts sounded, War-station was now starting it’s run, he dumped his missiles in the direction of the Kalu, used a capacitor and appeared at a pre-selected emergence point.

He used his view screens to see War-station.

“Well it lives up to it’s name,” Smith said.

Ooh I’m burning through the sky yeah!

            Laser cannons, rail cannons, missiles and Personal Defense systems seemed to ignite.
Two hundred degrees
That’s why they call me Mister Fahrenheit
It was like a porcupine spreading it’s needles and spearing tissue paper. The needles were weapons fire, and the tissue paper was Kalu ships being bashed to death with rounds, turned to nothing by nuclear blasts of warheads, or the invisible rays of laser cannons.

I’m trav’ling at the speed of light
I wanna make a supersonic man out of you

            Kalu ships were battered, sections of their ships disappearing, armor being bent in. Power plants shut down where the Kalu were lucky, others exploded. Engines stopped and ships drifted.

Kalu fighters rushed in on their suicide runs, ships that were being smashed closed with the massive station.

Don’t stop me now
I’m having such a good time
I’m having a ball

            The fire didn’t increase but more ships exploded and the destruction increased ten-fold. The Artificial Intelligences were in command now.
Don’t stop me now
If you wanna have a good time

The Kalu were being halted in progress. Instantaneous communications and understanding of the Kalu’s weaknesses. It was a slaughter.

Just give me a call

            Kalu ships crashed into the shields. There were just too many of them to be stopped by even War-station’s fire.

Missiles, a full spread pushed out and wormholes started appearing.

Don’t stop me now (’cause I’m having a good time)
“Holy shit,” Smith said, finding the words to understand what was going on.

            War-station was getting hammered, but someone was using the ship’s attached to it, to make dual wormholes right next to one another, a makeshift shield that absorbed anything incoming. It staved off the worst of the Kalu fighters.

Don’t stop me now (yes I’m having a good time)
I don’t wanna stop at all

            It didn’t stop them all, the first and second shields had already failed, but being layered Smith hadn’t even known.

War-station was past the Kalu fleet.

It turned, firing at the Kalu, the Kalu turned, striking the station or the shielded ships.

Still the station’s guns fired, the engines powered up, once again working to brake the station and then start it after the Kalu.

The War-station was still taking Kalu down, but it was nothing like their in-close action. They’d taken three and a half thousand ships out with that.

It had been four minutes since Smith had jumped away from War-station, now he was powering for it again.

His smart computer told him that there was something happening as he closed with the station. He checked the alert.

The Kalu had formed together again, their fighters returning to their star-destroyers. Now they ran into War-station’s last surprise. A nice thick minefield.

Ships disintegrated like cream cheese through piano wire, or crumpled like they’d hit a wall.

There’s nothing pretty about seeing that much death, Smith watched. The gunners of War-station never gave up.

He headed towards War-stations hangars, looking at a diagram that showed the breakdown of the people within his command.

Too many holes showed, many had gone out and too few had returned.

They worked independently for the most part which made it all the more sudden, the questions lingering in his mind of how they had died and if they would have survived if he was with them.

He bowed his head, he knew the jumpers operating procedure, he had made the damned thing. While they worked apart they were a tight knit group and it was hard.

He looked to the minefield the Kalu had sailed into as automated systems pulled his jumper inside.

You did good, you did good. Their sacrifice meant that more people would survive the oncoming wave of Kalu. Though he’d be lying if he said he’d trade their lives again.