The Skirmish at Wimple or Recon Mission on Wimple was a recon mission launched by the Humankind Empire of Abh on Sord Wimple which had returned into the Alliance's hand as the abh retreated from the system. Along with the recon mission on Miofrantia, the objective of these two missions was to detect the attacking direction of the enemy main fleet. Assault squadron Latouche with the assault division were the first sent to the area to recon. During the engagement, Seigroil and Basiroil were both made to stay behind due to the extra debris they carried. It was during this time new weapons were used on the ships and both ships were followed by a scout squadron of Task Force Aptic of the United Mankind. Both ships sustained heavy damage from the new weapons and only the Basiroil managed to escape with up-to-date intelligence of both weapons to be used in the coming engagement and the position of the enemy fleet, which was only a few hours behind them.
As part of the Latouche Squadron, Atosuryua’s group was the first into battle. They quickly dispatched a large amount of mines used on them and they received little damage initially. Basiroil and Seigroil both received more fire than the others and in turn were slowed down. The rest of the squadron proceeded ahead of them, leaving both Seigroil and Basiroil on their own.
The crews of both ships believe they are granted a time of reprieve; however, new weapons utilized by improved United Mankind technology soon were revealed.
While the crews of the ships were resting, both ships come under attack by separation mines. Since they were being pulled by the space-time bubbles and were undetected until seconds before activation, little could be done. Both Basiroil and Seigroil received serious damage from the attack. Deca-Commander Lafiel who had not been on the bridge and slept in her uniform commanded for a report on the damage. Atmospheric pressure leaks spring up all across the Basiroil and the situation is worse for the Seigroil. Both attempt to communicate to each other following the surprise attack.
Seigroil manages to contact Basiroil to reveal Deca-Commander Ragash who had lost his right eye and perhaps a severe head wound; apparent by the large bandage around the right section of his head. Basiroil evaluates the damage, and discovers their radar is gone along with major functionality of the space-time communicator. Basiroil now is flying blind, unable to differential friend from foe due to this loss of equipment. Immediately both crews get to work attempting to repair all systems and armor possible with what little time they have before the arrival of enemy Task Force Aptic.
After some time all pressure leaks are sealed on board the Basiroil, but both Seigroil and Basiroil have irreparable damage to radar and space-time communicators. Line Wing Aviator Samson gives six hours before repairs could be completed on the radar for the Basiroil. Seigroil sends another message to keep them in a fixed position. At the moment it is best because neither can see where they’re going and fuel conservation is of the essence.
The Longest DaysEdit
Both crews are strained and tired from their work. Basiroil restores radar ability to the ship, but now they can only “see” what’s around them. No other use could come from it besides general direction of themselves and anything outside of them that approached; be it ally or enemy. For the moment they were stranded.
For forty more hours following repairs, the crew continued to do what they could to mend any systems, but maintaining position spent their limited supply of anti-matter fuel. In an attempt to conserve fuel general life-support systems were limited; this greatly increased crew strain now working with barely livable conditions.
Soon the Basiroil detected a small unit of ships en route to their position. Lafiel contacted the Seigroil as soon as possible. During the conversation, both explain what supplies of fuel are left. Seigroil has enough for six hours, Basiroil has enough for ten. Deca-Commander Ragash proposes that all fuel and crew are transferred over to the Basiroil along with their wounded and dead. It would the last decision made by Deca-Commander Ragash. Deca-Commander Lafiel evaluates the fact that if the ships were to separate and leave the debris with Seigroil, they would be able to increase their speed and possibly escape.
Unfortunately the only crew unable to board is the bridge command crew of Seigroil. Since the ship received extensive damage, the bridge took low priority to other systems and sections. Due to clear lack of manpower, they were unable to clear a path for themselves. Deca-Commander Lafiel is unfortunately forced to abandon the officers on board the Seigroil, leaving Deca-Commander Ragash to die with his command and honor, having done all he could to save his crew. Seigroil would also serve one last function. It would act as a decoy for the unknown approaching ships so that Basiroil could continue its escape. Though it could not be told whether or not the Seigroil was engaged or pressure systems failed from the point of view of Basiroil, all remaining trapped staff were killed and the bubble disappeared from radar.
Basiroil makes further reductions in life-support attempting to stretch out the remaining 16 hours of fuel on board their ship. The crew becomes stretched to their limit and half are willing to surrender to the enemy before being stranded in Plane Space. Lafiel is presented this option and adamantly refuses to surrender. In the mean time, a new set of bubbles appears on radar directly ahead of their path. Deca-Commander Abriel Lafiel once again is faced with an all-or-nothing situation . . . stop the ship and wait to be destroyed or captured, or continue forward on simply hope. She attempts to assure the crew that she “knows” those bubbles are theirs. Everyone doubts it, yet she insists on advancing.
Something is fired from the lead ship ahead of them, and due to the fact that nothing could possible be done about it, Lafiel continues to order the ship to advance. The object enters space-time fusion of their ship in seconds yet their ship remains as it sails past them. A message is played on the bridge.
|“|| This is the Star Force Defense Fleet of the Aptic Gate.|
This is a message for our fellow assault ship.
Immediately enter space-time fusion with the lead ship.
What was thought to be a mine was actually a transmitter. Commander Lafiel knows of only one person who could have thought of it; Hecto-Commander Atosuryua. They are secured amongst their fellow squadron-mates and are escorted home following a brief battle with the pursuing United Mankind ships.
The recon mission ended after over 62 hours. Although this wasn’t the first time both Abriel Lafiel and Jinto Linn encountered attrition like situation, the situation now prompted two crews of assault ships and complete ignorance of the environment. Additionally, one stroke of luck worked out for them.
The situation was that there was no imaginable manner of which Abriel Lafiel could have been able to tell what direction they were going, just that they were being followed. The chance they “drifted” towards Aptic Gate served as part of great luck. Also, Lafiel’s intuition and instinct helped save the crews of two Imperial Star Force ships. Also their presence trailing ahead of the United Mankind Aptic Task Force helped reveal exactly where the battle was going to commence; thus serving the purpose of the recon mission and attaining a qualified strategic victory. The fact that such a build up was at Wimple helped guide the next stage of Operation Phantom Flame.
As for the final result of Wimple, the United Mankind achieved the capture of the system at the expense of the element of surprise. Basiroil escaped and their pursuers gave away the future plans of the United Mankind fleet. Overall the results are inconclusive, but the value of information and lives spent were invaluable to the efforts of Operation Phantom Flame.