Brightland grimly surveyed the battle screens as his five seconds trickled away. Finally he sighed, "Permission to come aboard then, I guess. Hand you my sword." He brought the Star of Dominus about and set a course for the flagship.
"You're doing the right thing, Commander," Aurelius said into his ear.
"I think so too." And he unleashed his ship's entire arsenal upon the Radiant.
Stabbing a button to silence Aurelius's growl of fury, Serrick bathed the massive flagship in violet geysers. Then Aurelius returned fire. Every battery blazed, engulfing Brightland's ship in ghostly zero-g flame. Beyond, Exile spindrives flashed one by one as the ships winked out. Maybe we'll make it after all, Serrick thought right before another volley from Radiant flung him into first one wall, then another, before a sliver of bubbling metal speared his lung from behind.
Blinking away blood, he gazed at the sole remaining display showing his relentless collision course, already too close for the Radiant's widely spaced cannon-turrets to track.
Brightland leaned on his console and hailed the flagship. His brain felt fuzzed and heavy. He meant to say something about the uncertainty of losing hands but all he managed was, “This… isn’t over… Aurelius."
The Dominion captain regarded him impassively. "It is for you. Traitor."
Chunks of hull plating flew from the two ships as they hurtled toward impact. Dimly, Brightland heard his voice mumbling a slurred command to jump.
He blinked and suddenly found himself in a med bay, an impossibly young girl with ensign piping leaning over him. "Where am I?" he croaked. He couldn't feel his limbs.
"With the fleet, sir. We escaped. We need orders."
"The Dominus is being refitted, sir. It'll be ready in a week."
"Call it...the Gambler's Ruin," Serrick whispered. Then the void enveloped him.