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The Hellfire Earth built Battle Ship
Hellfire 'Darkness Falls'
Enjoy this hub about a ship with more history than most and features in both books Origins and Darkness Falls
The Hellfire was not the Captain’s first ship, but it is the ship he has come to call home. After the loss of his first vessel the Pay-load, Captain Sharman found he had lost his job with the haulage company that gave him his first chance to travel the stars. But this wasn’t the end of his adventures; in fact he and his crew found themselves on Caridian prime for a short time. Making small cargo runs during the war, for both the military and private contractors.
This was not ideal but with the small crew that had stayed with him after the destruction of the Pay-load. He soon found they were running quite a lucrative small business. Unfortunately the shuttle they were using was very limited to what it could carry and how far it could travel. The crew decided that they needed a larger ship, if they were to make a full success of their dealing and with the offer of a highly dangerous cargo pickup for the Caridian Empire an opportunity arose.
At this time the Caridian Empire was in the process of decommissioning some of its old Earth built war ships and with the cargo pickup being such a suicidal mission. Captain Sharman decided to push his luck with the payment he had been offered and with one ship’s name catching his ear. He suggested that if the Caridian military could pay so much for the transport of one of their spy’s from enemy territory; then the pay could be hafted and one of their soon to be decommissioned war ship’s could be given as the rest of the payment once the mission had been completed. General Darrin agreed to this and the rest is now history.
The war ship they had been given was already named Hellfire; it was in some need of repair but most of its systems were still in good working order. The ship it’s self is an Earth classed heavy battle cruiser; this particular model of war ship came into service in the year 2269AD and was use by Earth’s own military Empire right up to the year 2299AD. By this time Earths military had sold off most of its older war ships to the Caridian Empire in favour of their new technologically advanced and more powerful war ships. The Caridian Empire had just entered into a War with the Plotations Sovereignty and needed ships fast to fight off this powerful and hostile race. The Hellfire became part of the Caridian fleet after its sale in the year 2291AD and stayed in service until the year 2301AD before it was decommissioned and due to be scraped. Luckily for the Hellfire she was saved at the last minute and handed over to Captain Sharman as part payment. The Hellfire was commissioned in the year 2274AD which means the ship was 35 years old during the events of the book Hellfire ‘Darkness Falls’ If you are counting years in a linear order. But the truth is the Hellfire is years older than that.
The Hellfire hold a pretty extensive arsenal of weaponry; the ship’s main forwards cannons are a twin high energy phased pulse distributor system. These cannons were designed to cause maximum damage to any approaching ships so that they would be less of threat when the ships came into close quarter combat. The Hellfire also has several smaller energy cannon across both of her sides. These cannons were designed to continue the bombardment of an enemy ship once the forwards cannons were unable to lock on to the passing enemy vessel. The ship’s secondary weapon systems have a more defensive role. These weapons consisted of a full array of automatic pulse turrets to give the ship maximum protection from enemy missiles, boarding ships and fighters. A mine deployment disc launcher and if all power fails. The ship has six manual pulse laser cannons mounted to give minimal protection to the ship in desperate times. This battle cruiser is also equipped with two large hanger bays; which when fully stocked can hold up to thirty fighters along with an assortment of shuttles and other boarding vessels. Finally this war ship would not be complete without its twin shield generator system; the system was designed so that in the event of one of the ship’s generators being hit or damaged the other could still give a decreased level of coverage to the rest of the ship. This was a new idea for its time leading to energy fields becoming a much more affective form of protection during battle.
All of this and the fact that this type of war ship was built to be incredibly sturdy lead to its long service in not just one military fleet but two. Even now the Hellfire could still hold its own in a battle against a much more advance war ship, due to her durable design. But this is not all the war ship has to offer; The Hellfire was part of the first fleet where all military ships housed there own portable jump gate technology. The ships Jump engines are still very bulky; but compared to the first heavy war ships that held their own gateways. These engines were much more energy efficient and could be activated at a moment’s notice without the very lengthy waiting time older ships needed while power built up to the right levels. This changed the way some battles were fort and it also changed the dynamics of war to a degree. It became common during border battles for enemy ships to do hit and run attacks on key locations and bases along military boarders before a full attack would be launched. In effect this weakened its opponent before the battle its self.
The ship its self needs a crew of around 100 personnel to efficiently operate her; but from the bridge the ship could be run by just a hand full of people. Its ideal personal level is around 480 at any one time, but this would also account for fighter pilots a full relief crew and backup staff, engineer’s, catering staff and cleaners. The Hellfire was originally a military vessel before it was handed to Captain Sharman so it has little in the way of recreational facilities available for its crew. But then this doesn’t account for the combat training rooms and Jim that it holds in its lower decks.
Now the Hellfire is privately owned her crew make money by doing large cargo runs, salvage mission and even the odd rescue mission for anyone who needs help. This has got them into some trouble at times and they have even ended up fighting in two huge wars; but that is another story that must be read.
If you want to find out more about the ship and crew you can enjoy their adventures in the print book Hellfire Origins or from my author page below