How about a little space battle to whet your whistles? Gabriel’s Revenge, coming soon! Oh, and a little mockup of the cover-in-progress…
The black hammerhead shape of the NAFS Richard Marcinko slid through the wormhole terminus in a crackle of electromagnetic energy. Her hull shimmered as it dumped the extra charge into space and quickly faded back to matte black as the nanopaint exterior absorbed light. Her onboard stealth systems kicked in, rendering it nearly invisible to sensors.
A Ventura-class stealth cruiser normally carried two aerospace shuttles and an internal launcher with a capacity of twenty Jayhawk light missiles. The Marcinko had recently undergone a refitting with a new, more aggressive system, eliminating the second shuttle and modifying the launcher to only hold eight missiles. The recaptured space in the ventral bay was given over to one of the newest offensive weapons systems in the North American Federation Navy, and the NAFS Richard Marcinko, CAS-408, became a true warship.
As the Marcinko crossed the EM threshold of Ryokou, the ventral bay doors slid aside and four large pods were ejected, each on a thick carbon-carbon filament tether. Using small puffs of hydrazine, they stationed themselves in flanking positions in formation around the Marcinko. Two pods remained above the plane, one on either side, and two were below, forming a W shape. The original engineer who designed the system said during testing he thought it looked like a wolf’s teeth from the front, and the name Fangs Out stuck.
Each pod held twelve hypersonic Arrowhead antiship missiles, independently fired and guided by the Marcinko’s powerful battlecomp. The Arrowheads were much larger, faster, and held a significantly more powerful warhead than the Jayhawks cruisers were normally armed with. They were typically only found in ships of the line because of the storage space and launch area needed. By having external tethered pods, smaller ships like the Marcinko could now be armed with much more massive ordnance, making them far more deadly.
The Marcinko drifted under gate exit momentum for another few seconds as the tethers tightened, then lit her main engines.
Look for Gabriel’s Revenge by the end of the year…and get into the trilogy with Book 1, Gabriel’s Redemption, and Book 2, Gabriel’s Return, available for all e-book formats now!