The red planet below her filled her entire view. A small fragment of scrap from her ship floated by past her right shoulder. Moving so fast and yet hardly seeming to move at all, they fell together towards the dust.
1400 Zulu Time 16 of Common June of the year 48 HE
After the loss of multiple occupation zones along both fronts, alien fleets are detected en route to the Sol System as well as the Cyrus, Calypso and Elysia colonies.
Border fleets are recalled to the colonies, and garrisoned fleets are mobilized. In Sol the Imperial Guard at Luna is mobilized in full, as well as the fourth fleet which was home for repairs. Martian Defense Force, Home Guard and Outer Planets Defense Force fleets were also mobilized off Mars, Io and Proteus respectively.
For a few seconds he remains within in the warm confines of the network, watching information flow and queries pass him by. Then the main connection breaks and all that remains are the sensor feeds. The cold of space had never bothered him before, it was ever present in his design, but now it seemed to cut him to the core. Feeling left one drifting appendage as it floated beyond transmission range, leaving only the sensation of tumbling in it's wake. Off to one side the red planet mocked him, beckoning him to her rocky embrace.
400 Zulu Time 18 of Common June of the year 48 HE
Calypso and Cyrus are able to achieve 55% and 45% evacuation rates before the surface of the colonies are completely destroyed. Elysia was able to achieve only 3% evacuation before subterranean high yield explosives destroyed the majority of the colony. The majority of Elysia's defense fleet was destroyed while providing relief and evacuation for the remainder of the colony.
In Sol a Human Empire fleet of 400,000 ships engaged one alien fleet of approximately 1.5 million ships in the space surrounding Saturn and it's moons. Battle is still underway but casualties are presently reported at around 220,000 human ships and an estimated 412,000 alien ships.
A second alien fleet of approximately 1 million ships approaching from the opposite end of the system will be passing Mars shortly. 616,000 human ships composed of 398,000 MDF, 170,000 Home Guard and 48,000 Imperial Guard are stationed at Mars to engage the second fleet.
She looks out the small porthole of the compartment. Light reflecting off the surface of the red planet is all that illuminates the small compartment. The cockpit of the passenger shuttle floats across her view, riddled with holes and tears. In the distance she can see small figures, barely larger than ants floating by. Small, frozen testaments to the larger battle, small reminders that nobody would be coming for her. For a moment she thinks she'll cry, but instead she starts to hum a wordless melody half remembered from her childhood. As the red planet stares at her, and the air grows thin, the soft melody continues.
600 Zulu Time 18 of Common June of the year 48 HE
The forces around Mars are reinforced by the unexpected arrival of 32,000 AI ships, thought to have been extinct since the war four decades ago. Meanwhile the forces around Saturn finally crumble, with 40,000 ships remaining the fleet retreats towards Earth. Enemy losses at Saturn are estimated in the range of 700,000 ships.
The engagement around Mars lasts for eight hours. Though the Human Empire forces manage a technical victory, effecting losses of 750,000-800,000 ships on the alien fleet, the badly damaged fleet, 274,000 of their starting 648,000, is forced to retreat towards Earth.