A note from neo Koh

Somebody expressed their confusion with the United Nations of Mankind naval ranks

so here it is ~ 

Officers (Fleet / Marines) 
Admiral / General 
Vice Admiral / Lieutenant General 
Rear Admiral / Colonel 
Captain / Lieutenant Colonel 
Commander / Major 
Lieutenant Commander / Captain 
Lieutenant 1st Class 
Lieutenant 2nd Class 

Master Chief Petty Officer / Master Sergeant 
Senior Chief Petty Officer / Staff Sergeant 
Chief Petty Officer / Sergeant 1st Class 
Petty Officer 1st Class / Sergeant 2nd Class 
Petty Officer 2nd Class / Sergeant 3rd Class 

Spaceman Senior / Corporal 
Spaceman / Lance Corporal 
Spaceman Apprentice / Private 
Spaceman Recruit / Recruit

Blake suddenly jolted awake, he gasped for air while struggling against the restraints. As the fog in his mind slowly cleared away, he realized he still seated on the command seat. As he removed his helmet and took a deep breath, he felt the cold icy air and his breath turned white in the chill.

Blake tried to unbuckle himself out but found his fingers were numb, he spent several minutes shaking his hands and massaged them until he could move his fingers properly. Finally free of the restraints, he looked around the quiet bridge. Lit by a dim red light, the shadows cast on the bridge crew sleeping on their seats look like they are dead.

Blake sat on the empty co-pilot seat and booted up the display. Once the system started up, he ran a ship system diagnostics. He tried to peer out of the viewport as he waited for the ship logs to appear but due to the frosted screens, he couldn't see anything clearly. Finally, the computer beeped and displayed the ship's system log.

What was left of UNS Singapore was currently almost on top of Blake's World. Captain Blake set the computer to wake him up an hour before hitting the low orbit of Blake's World. He checked through all the systems of the ship to ensure there was no new issues or problems from the two weeks of travel. Once satisfied, he powered up the main display on the bridge.

The huge screen flickered to life and showed a live image of Blake's World from the probe. Data streams on the side displayed a few basic information regarding the planet. Blake got up and stood in front of the display and read the two weeks of data gathered by the probe.

The atmosphere appeared to consist mainly of nitrogen, oxygen, argon, hydrogen, carbon dioxide, and small amounts of other gases and some unknown elements. Blake quickly skimmed through the data. Continental type world, 1.3 times the size of Earth, with a gravity of 0.9 times of Earth. No electronic emissions of any kind were detected but appeared to have some native lifeforms. Satellite images showed oceans, massive landmasses topped with vegetation. It appears to be totally earth-like to Blake.

He let out his breath that he has been holding in. Blake could not imagine if after travelling here and the planet was unable to support human life. His whole crew will be doomed. He looked towards where Ford was laying on his crash seat, face hidden by the frosted visor. His gamble has paid off.

Using the data provided by the probe and the current approach of the ship, the computer calculated several possible reentry sites. Finally, he chose a site with the highest percentage of successfully landing and the least amount of projected casualties. He looked at the data and images and together with the computer, finely tuned the approaches, taking into account factors like wind and drag.

The ship will begin its approach from the thermosphere, looping once over the planet to bleed off speed before descending down to the troposphere and using the remaining fuel to and air brakes to further reduce speed before hitting the ocean and using it to dampen the landing and land on a flat beach. Blake was confident that UNS Singapore will be able to land on the planet but the issue is, will they still be in one piece?

Almost an hour later, the floating hulk entered the orbit of Blake's World. Thrusters angled the ship to the correct trajectory and the ship slowly falls into the atmosphere. Blake strapped himself in on the copilot seat and gave a quick prayer to the gods before activating the heat shields.

Blast shields slid smoothly down to cover the viewports, the ice slowly melted away and the temperature in the bridge starts to rise. As the ship enters the atmosphere, the bow of the ship glows a fiery red, turning the ship into a falling star.

All across the planet, natives lifeforms look up to the skies, watching a fiery falling star streak against the sky. As it travelled through the sky, it announces its arrival with a thunderous roar, awakening slumbering creatures and scaring the natives.

The damaged end of the ship trailed a massive plume of smoke, fire, and debris, from the day, it looks like a meteor while at night a falling star. As the natives of this world have never seen anything like this before, many fell to their knees in worship or fear.

After the ship looped once around the planet, Blake deploys its aero stabilizer fins from the ventral side, giving the ship some form of aerodynamics. He groans from his seat as the shaking rattled his whole body while warning alarms blazed endlessly driving him mad.

Soon the shaking stopped and the blast shields retracted back, Blake looked out of the viewports, seeing a pristine world, and a whole lot of water rushing towards him. He quickly pulls the control up and activated the thrusters to slow the falling ship. Soon his view changes to show the skyline instead of the ocean. He checks his airspeed, still too fast and applied the air brake to slow down.

Blake wasn't really flying the ship, as the ship is just dropping down from the sky. He tries his best to level the ship and not pancake into the ocean. As the City class ships, UNS Singapore were designed for atmospheric entry, it is also designed to land on water. Even so, he told Ford, that he could handle it, he did not really have much skill in piloting the ship.

By blind luck, he manages to keep the bow of the ship facing upwards as the aft portion splash landed against the ocean, creating a massive wake behind. He struggles with the aero stabilizers to keep the bow up as much as he can and burn up all the fuel in the manoeuvring thrusters to slow the ship down.

Despite his best efforts, the ship skids and cuts through the ocean, directly towards land, Blake watched helplessly as the landmass getting closer and closer. Oh fuck, he closed his eyes and braced hard against his seat as the bow of the ship rammed up the beach before smashing its way through the trees. He finally lost consciousness as the bow of the ship punched into a small hill before stopping.

A note from neo Koh

Please rate my novel if you guys enjoy reading it! Thanks! =)

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neo Koh


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