Authors Note: Hellow people, I'm back! How've you all been? Sorry for being a little late, but this was harder to write than I thought. This is the first time I've ever written a space battle, so if you've got any tips for improvement, let me know. Anyway, enjoy the chapter!

DISCLAIMER: I own nothing. Mass Effect belongs to Bioware.

Turian Ninth Fleet, Dreadnought 'Honor in Vigilance', Orbiting Relay 314

When the Turian Hierarchy mobilized for war, there was no hiding it. Unlike the Salarian's, who's concept of war was to send in teams of STG to sabotage the enemy; nor the Asari, who preferred carefully crafted ship formations that had no weaknesses and Commando teams with centuries of active military experience; the Turian's instead believed in one rule that dictated their entire war-time philosophy: Use a crippling amount of force through ships to disorientate the opponent, then metaphorically rip off its legs by sending down the armies to secure the planet, burn the food, and shoot any combatant found. It was this mindset that usually made them predictable, in a sense.

However, while some thought that the Turian's had no concept of 'limited force', they displayed it all the time. Truthfully, they had two states of war; The Long War and The Annihilation War.

The Long War was what the galaxy knew of; full force brought to bear, complete militarization, the complete takeover of planets, and the death of all active combatants. Too most species, they saw this as excessive, especially when dealing with rebellions or another species' army. One thing Asari in particular found horrifying was their view on civilians, or rather lack-there-of. When looked at from a Turian perspective, it made sense; after all, when your entire race was essentially an army, there was no such thing as a 'non-combatant'. They didn't even have a word for it until they'd met the Asari. Of course, that didn't mean they went out of their way to hunt down civilians to kill. To do so would be an act of genocide, no question about that, and would be detrimental to the Turian species if that stance was taken with rebellions.

The other, the one the galaxy at large had no idea of, was one drawn-up upon discovery of the Prothean ruins on Menae. This state of war allowed the Turian's to ignore their sense of honor, their morals, and anything that made them qualified as a civilized species: It made the use of war crimes standard protocol. In this proposed state of war, WMD's of all scales were to be freely used, restrictions on Garden Worlds were withdrawn, the entire species was conscripted into armed service with the age lowered to ten years of age, and civilians truly were hunted down to the last. This state of war was only known to the Primarch's and the Hierarchy's most trusted members for fear it could be leaked to the public. This was intended to only be used when the only available option was the extermination of the enemy.

This state of war had almost been declared during the Krogan Rebellions, the only effective counter the leaders of the Hierarchy could find at the time to Krogan ruthlessness and brutality, when the Salarian's created Genophage. When given a choice between exterminating or neutering the Krogan, the leadership had seen only one option really.

The only reason General Desolas even knew of this was because he was one of the honored few that were trusted enough to know.

Truthfully, he didn't even know why he was thinking of the Hierarchy's states of war. This mission wasn't even a truly hard one; all he had to do was pacify a system or two of a new species, find the Prothean cache behind 314, and keep his men alive. A simple, if underhanded in the larger scheme of things, plan.

The problem he was having though was with the fact he had no idea what to expect. This species was an unknown, aside from what the clan-less had told the leadership of their ships, which was how durable they were. That told them nothing of how powerful their weapons were, what their biology was, or what to expect. If a ship had been captured alive, then they could have at least examined it and the corpses inside to get a general idea of their mindset and prepare accordingly. As it was, he was leading men into an unknown situation. As a general, he hated dealing with unknowns.

He hadn't ascended the ranks through family connections or political maneuvering, no Turian did; that was left to the Asari and Salarian's. No, he'd ascended by following orders to the letter, expert combat skills, but most importantly, a willingness to make the hard decisions in battle. Every time he led troops into battle, it was with the most information possible so he could prepare accordingly and give his men the best chance of survival. In this situation, with no information, all he could tell them was to prepare for everything. He knew they'd do just that; eat a full meal, mod their weapons for any possibility, and get in last minute practice.

Still, despite how Desolus knew his men were the best in the Hierarchy for a reason, he also knew what the chances were that there was another Rachni behind the relay; far too high. He'd read the history, partaken in the simulations, and listened to those few ancient Matriarch's and Krogan who participated in the Rachni War. That didn't do anything to mitigate the... nervousness he felt at that possibility.

He didn't show how he felt; that would be unfitting of a Turian of his station. Instead he was the picture of calm stoicism, someone that his men would look to for guidance.

"Something wrong, general Desolas?" Blinking, Desolas turned toward the admiral in charge of his fleet, Admiral Oraka. He was a distinguished admiral, one he'd fought with against Krogan warlords. He was a sound strategist in space, and like Desolas, he believed in keeping his men alive.

He shook his head. "No, admiral, I'm just thinking about the upcoming battle."

The admiral chuckled. "And why's that? Worried about the space portion of the battle? Don't be; this species may have durable ships, but that means nothing if they've no idea how to conduct a battle in space. If they're truly a new species, then centuries of Turian experience in space will show these upstarts our skill. If they've been in space for a few centuries like we were before we encountered the Asari, then I'm confident that my skill will allow me to overwhelm the defense fleet and establish a foothold in their territory for future covert assaults."

Despite himself, Desolas let out a chuckle. "Well at least one of us is confident that this species will prove no challenge."

"Make no mistake, Desolas. This will not be so easy we'll incur no losses. If we assume their weapons are similarly advanced as their armor, then I expect to lose a few ships." The admiral explained. "And we both know that ground combat is far more dangerous than space combat."

Desolas nodded. "I know that, but what I'm more worried about for my part is if we encounter another Rachni. You and I both know that simulations are poor substitutes for actual combat."

"Well, we'll find out what this new species is made of in a few hours when we enter the system." Oraka gestured to the window at the fleet outside the flagship. "Take the time to rest and prepare yourself; me and the fleet will handle what comes next."

Shanxi Defense Fleet, Empire Cruiser 'ESV Iwo Jima', Orbiting Shanxi

Admiral Alexander Goto was not having the best of days. As the Admiral of the Shanxi defense fleet, he'd expected a relaxing career; after all, no one was dumb enough to attack Shanxi. Anyone who even attempted to attack Shanxi, the symbol of Humanity's unflinching capability to withstand an alien threat, were quickly reminded why Shanxi and its people had earned that title.

Of course, that only accounted for Humans. As he'd found out mere days ago, it seemed that aliens were more than willing to attack Humanity. Which meant that since Shanxi was behind the aliens only link Humanity, they'd be coming to assault them. If he were the praying type, then he'd have made his peace with his gods by now.

"Have you made it into the bunkers?" But he wasn't, and instead he was speaking with his family for what may be the last time.

"We have, but it's a bit cramped down here. I mean, all things considered, it's more spacious than you'd think since a few hundred million people are down here, but still..."

Despite himself, Alexander let out a chuckle and smiled. "Well, when this is all over, maybe I'll suggest to the brass that we expand the tunnels." He paused for a moment. "Hibiki, how's Kasumi?"

"She's good; a bit confused about what we're doing exactly. She keeps asking when we'll be going home and when you'll be back." Hibiki sighed and looked to the side, presumably at Kasumi. "I've had to promise to get her a pony and a year's supply of candy, then a trip to Japan back on Earth, to distract her."

Alexander chuckled. "Well, despite the hit our bank accounts may take after that, I think she'll deserve it after this. Has she been keeping her hands to herself?"

Hibiki nodded. "For the most part, yes." At his raised eyebrow, his husband chuckled. "She's only stolen a few things, nothing anybody would have missed, but I made her put them back."

"Good; I'd hate to cause your guards any distractions because of her. They'll have enough problems soon enough."

Hibiki frowned and leaned forward. "Alex, I can tell you're worried. Are you... are you going to be alright?"

He put on a smile and nodded. "Of course, dear. I may be worried, but I'm more than confidant that I'll repel these aliens before the day is over and we'll all be back home in a few days."

"I hope you're right. Promise me though that you won't take any risks, and that if things start to turn bad that you'll abandon ship."

That was a promise they both knew he couldn't keep, but these words would help his husband, so Alexander would tell him whatever he needed. "Don't worry, I promise. No risks for me."

"Sir!" An ensign shouted. "The relay is activating and unknown contacts are pouring out of it!"

Alexander nodded and stood to go stand with his crew. "I've gotta go, Hibiki. Stay safe; I love you."

"I love you too." The signal was ended as Alexander lowered his Omni-Tool and he stood at the CIC.

"How many?"

"216 contacts, sir." A tense silence followed as the entire bridge took in that number. They were outnumbered nearly 4 to one; if anyone in the Shanxi defense fleet had any delusions that they could win this before, then those were gone now as they beheld the attack fleet in front of them.

"What are their classes?"

"Most of them are frigate class sir, and for every three of them, there's a cruiser." The ensign paused. "There's also a Dreadnought in the middle of the fleet sir."

Alexander sighed and stared at the enemy fleet as it moved into range. 'There's no possible way we're winning this. Best we'll be able to do is slow them down and buy as much time as we can for General Williams and his men down on the planet. Thankfully, we've got an order just for this situation.'

"Tell all ships that the Szigetvar Protocol is now in effect, and ALL weapons are now authorized for use. Inform them to use the asteroid field between us and the aliens as cover, and if their weapons are disabled, to jump as closely as possible to the enemy and self-destruct."

The ensign nodded and began transmitting the orders as soon as he'd finished speaking.

Szigetvar was a well-known protocol among Humanity. Named after the famous siege of Szigetvar by the Ottoman on Earth, it had been devised about mid-way through the Human-Hive War to buy as much time for defenses on the planet when a defense fleet was drastically outnumbered. It was never used when there was any possibility of victory, since it entailed breaking laws that Humanity had in place for centuries, and throwing away their lives to simply buy time, no retreat allowed. It had been opposed at first as a useless order, but when fleets that used the protocol bought enough time for their planets to mount enough defenses to hold until reinforcements came, it became common-place.

It also had never been used since the end of the Human-Hive War; they'd never had a need to use it until now.

As both fleets moved within range of each other, Alexander glanced at his own fleet's strength. Comprised of Frigate's and Cruiser's, he didn't have much fire-power; there were only a few nukes spread out across the entire fleet, so he'd have to have his men concentrate their fire on only a few ships at a time if he wanted to do damage. Thankfully he had a trump card that he doubted the aliens would expect.

He just hoped that they proved their worth for the first time since the Human-Hive War.

Turian Ninth Fleet, Dreadnought 'Honor in Vigilance'

Admiral Oraka was not a man who underestimated his enemies. Years of fighting Krogan, expecting simple brutes who charged forward like savages in space combat, then losing countless ships to cunning commanders had taught him how deadly that could be.

It was why when his fleet had arrived in system and found only 60 ships of Frigate and Cruiser weight-classes, he'd spent a moment analyzing them before issuing his orders. They had nearly twice as many ships as his people had when they had first activated a Relay, and about as many as his people had guarding the standard colony. It was impressive assuming this was the their homeworld, but it put him on edge. The stations in orbit of the planet supported the theory it was their homeworld, but until he could get an accurate scan of the planet, he'd withhold any assumptions.

"Sir, alien fighters are moving ahead of the fleet and coming toward us." An ensign informed him.

Oraka nodded. It seemed the battle was starting; it was time to see how these aliens fought. "Inform the Frigate's and Cruisers to launch their Big Wing formations and meet the enemy; once they've handled them, they are to follow standard procedure and fire their torpedoes outside of the aliens effective Guardian Laser range."

"Transmitting orders now sir."

Once the fighter's dealt with the aliens, he could use his fleets superior number to their maximum effectiveness. Unlike normal where fleets would jockey for superior positioning or ship-vs-ship knife-fights, he suspected this would be over in a few hours. He had more than enough ships to simply surround and engulf the enemy in overlapping firing vectors, and he intended to do just that.

"The frigates and cruisers are almost within minimum firing distance sir." The ensign told him.

Moments after the ensign said that, just as their fighters clashed with the enemy's, the alien fleet fired. His slight surprise at the range their ships had aside, he expected them to impact his ships and cause minor damage, perhaps take down a few shields and cause a few hull-breaches. What he got instead were violent flashes of light as six of his frigates exploded upon impact with the alien rounds.

A lesser general, a more arrogant one, would have spent time sputtering in rage and rationalizing this as a fluke, something a new species had done with luck or because of incompetence on the captains' parts, and in turn lose more lives in the process. Unfortunately for the aliens, he wasn't one of them.

"How long until we're within range!?"

"We're within range now sir!"

Oraka nodded. "Good; order the frigates to fire at the ships with their MAC's, and the cruiser's to be ready to fire if they move to dodge."

Once his orders were transmitted, his ships followed his orders to the letter. The frigates opened fire in a volley of explosive death that sped towards the aliens' ships like a rainfall. He didn't have to wait long for the aliens to lose some of their own ships; either to the continuous volley of fire his frigates were launching at them, or his cruisers carefully timed shots that hit the evading ships. Some could escape with their lives, but many went up in flames, and those that did escaped didn't do so unscathed. Already he could see a few ships that had lost power to their main weapons.

In one attack he had halved the alien defensive fleet, and had only lost six of his own.

"Inform the frigate packs to begin surrounding the remaining enemy ships, and for the cruisers to begin making their way to the enemy homeworld. The enemy won't do anything being hounded by our frigates." Oraka ordered. "What's the status of our fighters?"

"Nearly 50% have been lost sir."

His eyes widened a fraction at that. "How many have the aliens lost."

"Unknown, but we're getting reports that the enemy fighters are capable of engaging 5 of our own at once."

Oraka sighed. "Inform a few frigates to wade into battle; their Guardian Lasers should be able to turn the tide of that battle."

"What of the stations orbiting the planet sir?"

"They likely only have a few garrisoned troops and Guardian Lasers. Once we land troops on the planet, we'll dispatch some to capture the stations."

"Yes sir!"

Turian Apex Fighter, Shanxi Space

Brimus Melion was a veteran of decades of military service. He'd fought on the ground against pirates for his required time, then moved on to become a pilot. During his time as a pilot, he'd fought against the cunning pirates, the advanced Asari, and the tricky Salarian's in dogfights. Each one had earned his respect for the numerous close-calls he'd had over the years. Throughout it all, he, his brothers, and sisters had shown the galaxy why Turian's were the undisputed best pilots in the galaxy.

At least, they were until they'd met these aliens. They had advanced fighters; skilled pilots capable of outmaneuvering any of them; a coordination with each other that should be commended; and tactics that he'd have never thought of before, but in hindsight were obvious. Their skill was only accentuated when he saw them kill his fellows in droves; it served to fill him with a sense of dread when he saw that the only way to kill these pilots was by using swarm tactics.

Perhaps they wouldn't have if they'd entered the battle seriously. He and the others had come into the battle expecting primitive fighters that were destroyed after a few shots, and would only take a few minutes to eliminate before they moved on to the war ships.

They'd paid for underestimating this enemy. 30% of them had been lost in the initial clash, and that number had only gone up in the hour since they'd begun. At this rate, they'd all die and give the enemy fighters the chance to do... whatever it was their mission was in the first place.

Glancing at his radar, Brimus saw that an enemy pilot was on his tail. Swearing under his breath, he active his thrusters and sped through the wreckage that surrounded them. As he expected, the enemy pilot was able to follow him with ease as he maneuvered through the debris of their ships. He zoomed past a floating corpse of an alien, its armor charred and helmet cracked open. Were he not in a life or death situation, he'd have taken some time to examine that which had killed numerous of his fellow Turians.

His fighter shook as the alien's shots impacted his Kinetic Barriers. Glancing at the readings, he could see that it was violently flashing red. That was a simple indicator that they were gone and if he didn't do something quickly, he'd be dead. Thankfully, years of experience had taught what to do in this situation: go with his gut.

He did a barrel roll.

If any of the instructors in the academy had seen him perform that maneuver they'd have had his head, but he was desperate, and he'd seen the aliens perform the same maneuvers themselves. Why not take a page out of their book and try it for himself?

His risky maneuver paid off in the end thankfully, as the enemy pilot was unprepared for that maneuver. It was understandable; during the entire battle none of his fellows had performed a single maneuver like the aliens that they seemed to be adept at. It likely wouldn't work twice, but he wasn't about to let go of this opportunity.

He fired his disrupter torpedoes at the enemy pilot, and despite his best efforts, the torpedoes impacted and his enemy perished soon after in a violent explosion.

Just as he breathed a sigh of relief, he saw a frigate appear in the middle of the battle. Before he could even identify which side it was on, it used its Guardian Lasers to cut down droves of the alien fighters. They exploded in brilliant flashes of light, and he could hear his comrades cheer over the comms at the reinforcement. He let out a chuckle and joined up with what was left of his squadron. With the frigate here, they could finish off this battle quickly and move to engage the planet.

Within minutes, the alien fighters had been hunted down and eradicated. It seemed that despite their skill, even they couldn't take on a warship by themselves. Oddly enough, he'd seen them attempt to do just that, and the fighters and bombers within the alien attack formation had charged the frigate. Unfortunately for them, the Guardian Lasers, and what remained of the Turian pilots, proved too much for them to handle and they were killed before they could perform whatever it was they planned.

As he and his fellow pilots all moved to begin harassing the enemy warships, Brimus stole a glance at the wreckage of the alien craft. They were impressive, and regardless of what happened after this battle was over, he knew that they would benefit the Hierarchy with both their skill and technology.

Regardless of whether or not they were willing.

Empire Cruiser 'ESV Midway'

Captain Jacob Cutter slammed his glass down on the bar in front of him and sighed. "So, what's our status?"

"Sir, our weapons are disabled, we're venting atmosphere on multiple decks, and our Kinetic Barriers are offline; we're dead in the water." His XO replied over the comms. Jacob could hear the panic in the man's voice clear over the comms and sighed. The man was young, too young to be in a situation like this, so he let his lapse in discipline slide. It was a wonder he was so calm, given the fact he was likely about to die.

He was an old man; he'd be a century old in a few months. He'd been all over Human space, fought against pirates, rebels, but most importantly, the Hive. He was there during the climactic battles, repelled boarding parties of hundreds of the tiny versions of the monsters, even once managed to survive his ship crashing planet-side and managing to hold off hundreds until he and his men were evaced. After all those situations, where he faced a slow death by being eaten alive instead of a quick explosion, this was nothing to really fear. Truthfully, once he'd seen the enemy fleet in system, he'd known fighting was a lost cause and had come down to the bar for one last drink.

"What of our engines?"

"They're still online sir. Why?" His XO's confusion was clear over the comms.

He snorted and poured himself another glass of whiskey. "Because Tanner, you do remember what the admiral's orders were, correct?"

"Yes sir."

"Good. Now, order the engineers to destabilize the core, and for the pilot to initiate a jump in the middle of the fleet."


Jacob sighed. "Szigetvar Protocol is in effect; that means no retreating. If we try then our own ships will fire on us for doing so, and we'll potentially doom lives down on Shanxi. So, give the orders to the engineers and pilot, and make your peace while you still can."

"...yes sir." The comm cut out after that and Jacob sighed.

"At least I'll finally get to see you again, Maria. You'd better be waiting for me with open arms when I get up there." He felt his ship perform the jump just as he finished speaking, and he smiled for the last time.

Turian Cruiser 'Honor Redeemed'

Captain Procmius sighed as he beheld the battle before him.

He snorted; this wasn't a battle. It was a slaughter in every sense of the word. Perhaps the aliens were putting up more of a fight than initially expect, and had proved crafty in taking out fifteen of the fleets ships, there was simply no possible way for 60 to take on hundreds. Already the last of the ships were being picked off now, and those few that were disabled were secondary targets that would be used to secure POW's.

Quimius would admit to a respect for the aliens after this battle. Despite being drastically outnumbered, they'd taken out more ships than anyone had expected them to, and fought with a ferocity and skill that any Turian could respect. Not once had they transmitted a message of surrender, not a single ship had turn and run. They were determined to try to protect this world, their homeworld or not, with everything they had and take as many Turian's with them. It was almost primitive how they threw their lives away.

Still, despite his respect for them, there was one feeling that meant he couldn't put his all into this fight: a feeling of unbridled guilt. He'd been the one to discover this species, and he'd been the one who couldn't prevent his captain from destroying the aliens' ships. Maybe if he'd chased them through the Relay he could have prevented the deaths of so many. But he didn't, and instead he was here, fighting a new species because the Turian Hierarchy wanted whatever technology they had to save their economy. If there were ever a less honorable thing, then he'd never heard of it. Still, it was also the smart thing to do, and he knew his people needed it, so he followed the orders of his superiors in this subjugation.

As his mind was preoccupied with guilty thoughts, he didn't hear his ensign until it was too late.

"Sir! Enemy ship just jumped in front of-"

That was all Quimius could hear before he and his entire ship died in a violent explosion of fire and radiation. For one small second all they and the alien crew felt was searing, unimaginable pain, before it stopped in an instant.

Turian Dreadnought 'Honor in Vigilance'

Admiral Oraka could only numbly stare at the battle in front of him. It had been going so well; the last of the enemy were being picked off, the fighters had managed to survive their battle, and they had disabled enough ships that to have prisoners in case they needed to force a surrender. Then one of the Spirits-damned disabled ships had jumped in the middle of his fleet and self-destructed.

On its own it wouldn't have done more than damage the Kinetic Barriers, but when five ships were destroyed, and nearly a dozen more damaged, he'd been able to deduce that cruiser had carried nuclear weapons. When his men informed him of the astronomically high amount of radiation one would only find because of a nuclear bomb, it only confirmed his fears.

Before he'd even been able to react, the five other supposedly disabled and harmless ships had jumped in the middle of his fleet so close their ships were touching his own, and detonated. The results were the same as before; countless dead and injured, and many damaged ships. The only consolation for him was that only one Human ship remained, and it didn't appear to be surrendering.

"Order all ships to open fire on the final enemy cruiser." His orders were relayed immediately, and he was greeted by hundreds of shots lighting up the cruiser. Its barriers and armor held up for the first few shots, but those gave in quickly under the combined fire of the entire Turian fleet. Even as it imploded and explosions raced across the hull of the ship, his fleet kept firing. It eventually exploded in a ball of fiery light and what little remained of it drifted through space.

With the final ship destroyed, Oraka sighed. "How many did we lose?"

"17 frigates and 9 cruisers, sir. 12 frigates and 7 cruisers are reporting extensive damages from the battle, sir." The ensign informed him.

Despite himself, Admiral Oraka was impressed. That was far more than any had expected them to lose upon entering the system. Even if they had resorted to using nuclear weapons, he felt his respect for the aliens grow; they'd fought to the last man and hadn't once offered to surrender. If they had then he'd have accepted and treated them as he would any POW, but they hadn't, and in doing so shown a similarity to his own species to protect what was theirs.

"The cruisers will reach the planet soon, sir."

"Good; I'll go inform Desolus to prep his troops. Plot a course for the-" Before he could finish his sentence, he saw three violent flashes of light above the planet. He spun on the spot to see just what had caused that; he didn't need to hear his ensigns tell him three cruisers had just been destroyed. They were they only thing approaching the planet after all.

It was then, as three more cruisers, and with them thousands upon thousands of Turian's, went up in flames that he saw what had done this: the space stations.

He growled. "Order all ships to fire on those stations now. Men, get our ship a firing solution on the closest one!"

The aliens were clever; he'd dismissed those stations as simple civilian platforms like the Citadel in that they were meant to house life inside them. In doing so, they'd been able to capitalize on this and hide them until any ships got close to the planet. The worst part was that he knew that for he, or any of his ships for that matter, to fire on the stations, they'd have to get close and risk their own hides to do so.

He could tell from how easily they destroyed cruisers in a single shot, and how those same shots would punch through frigates with ease and continue to hit another ship, that they hit just as hard, if not harder than his own Dreadnought. Thanks to their numbers, many ships had been able to get in close and open fire on the stations; unfortunately, those had all been frigates, and their shots were impacting the strong Kinetic Barriers the stations had.

Indeed, it seemed like the stations were focusing solely on the cruisers, or the frigates who got in the way. At this rate, they'd lose too many cruisers to launch a substantial invasion and have to call in the rest of the Ninth Fleet from patrol duty. That would draw the attention of the Asari and Salarians, and then all of this would be for naught!

"We're within range now sir!"

"Fire at will!" His ship shuddered as its main cannon fired, but he wasn't disappointed at the result. He felt a Turian smile stretch across his face as he saw the stations barriers shatter under the combined fire of his fleet and dreadnaught. Not soon after, it was succumbed to his fleets firepower and exploded in a blinding flash of white light.

Wasting no time, he pointed to the next station. "Order all ships to focus fire on that one and get me a firing solution on it!"

As his fleet moved to orient themselves toward the station, it and its surviving fellow didn't ignore how much damage his ship had done. They immediately fired open in own ship, and he saw frigates explode before his eyes as they tried to shield his ship from those devastating stations. It was all for naught however, as one of the shots travelled through a frigate and plowed into his ship with enough force to send him and his crew to the ground.

Dragging himself up, he turned spoke up, "Damage report!"

"Kinetic Barriers at 3% sir!"

Oraka's eyes widened when the information reached him. If another shot hit him or his ship then they wouldn't survive, and this invasion would lose both its Admiral and General at the same time, and they'd lose the only viable offensive option against these stations. He couldn't let that happened, not when so many lives depended on him.

"Charge our cannon to 100% and fire! Order all ships to shield us until then!" It may have been callous, but the 'Honor in Vigilance' was their best shot at destroying the stations.

The fleet followed his orders without hesitation and continued to fire upon the stations, while simultaneously guarding his own ship. The only thing he could compare it to was a group of dozens of Varren attacking a Krogan Battlemaster, simply whittling it down until the alpha could close in for the kill; It usually never worked.

Thankfully for him and his men, it did, and his ship fired at 100%. The round impacted with enough force that, were it to hit a planet, it would leave a crater larger than Palaven's capital city, and deep enough to reach bedrock. Against this station though, it was less devastating, but no less destructive. The barrier splintered as though it wasn't even there, and the round slammed into the station with no resistance. Almost no time passed between the deadly round hitting the station and it exploding in a ball of blinding white light so bright that every ship stopped firing for a moment to let it clear up.

Unfortunately for the remaining station, during the time no one had been firing, his ship had been charging its main gun again. When the battle resumed and his ships returned to firing on the station, he ended it minutes later with one final blast from his Dreadnoughts cannon.

Unlike before, this one didn't explode in a ball of light like the others. Instead, it stopped firing and floated before his fleet motionless. Admiral Oraka could see fires raging across the entirety of the station, and hull breaches covered a large portion of the station, but he could still see that it was online. That left only one reason for why it wasn't firing at him and his people anymore; it's main gun was offline.

"Order all ships to stop firing on the station; it's no longer a threat." He'd tell General Desolas to send teams to secure the station while he went down to the planet. If they could acquire the plans for a defensive station of this power, then they could free-up ships for patrols, perhaps even prepare for a war with the Terminus in the future if they no longer had to guard their planets.

Time would only tell if this station, and the technology the Primarch's wanted on the planet, was worth it. For now, though, he had to notify the general, and hope that the ground assault wasn't as taxing as the space battle was.

Authors Note: So...? What'd you guys think? Was it good? Bad? Absolutely horrible? Meh? Please do let me know! I'd love to hear your thoughts on how this can improve, and what you liked or didn't like, and I'll address it as best as I possibly can.

Oh, and I'm still uncertain if I should give a Codex for certain things, so please let me know which you'd prefer so I don't make a mistake doing something a majority of you won't like.

Anyway, don't forget to favorite, follow, and review. Bye!