The F-15 is much like my beloved Su-27P. This is no surprise, as the Su-27 was developed specifically as this plane’s adversary! Both are incredibly powerful! Even heavily loaded, the Eagle leaps into the air, just as my beautiful Crane would have done! It loves to fly. It is the Americans’ national symbol and it has sharp talons. I retract landing gear and proceed to sharpen those very talons.
Unlike the Su-27, the Americans have not fitted datalink capability to these aircraft. They are also not the latest variant in the U.S. inventory. This is probably because they did not wish for us to see the latest and greatest. Regardless, these are dangerous indeed. The APG-63 (V1) radar is older but still potent. I fiddle with it as I swing on course for Sukhumi with Troy nestled in close on my wing-it is different from the Zhuk radars I am used to.
A *beep* from the Tactical Electronic Warning System, the TEWS, shakes me out of my reverie.
I look carefully, and see the “06” cue, boxed, in the outer ring.
I must have had my mike hot, for Troy responds.
“Roger that. Mud spike!”
“06” is the American cue for the 3M9M missile system, the Cube — you call it “SA-6.” It is our equivalent to the HAWK and it is lethal. I order a descent to get out of its envelope, but as I do Sukhumi is coming into sight. Overlord calls us. MiGs are scrambling from the base!
I swallow the lump in my throat and command TWS mode on the radar. I have picked up nothing and we are within 25 miles of Sukhumi base. The beeping on my TEWS continues-and the Cube is joined by a Shilka AA gun system.