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Blades

Into The Fire Act Five - Operation Golgotha

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Chavik was sitting there waiting. On what he wished he knew. The capture of the patrol had done nothing except extract a small amount of information. What Blades was going to do with that information he didn't know. He hated not knowing. Now Blades was sitting over there chit chatting with Diamond.

Chavik was getting restless and nervous. The lack of doing anything and sitting out there in the heat was taking its toll. At least he had picked a spot in the mine's entrance where the sun wouldn't be beating down on him. Still he had to use his coverall sleeve to wipe the sweat from his forehead.

Finally Diamond made his way towards them. After a brief discussion and transfer of the layout of the mine Chavik and company headed in. The cobwebs and few small plants that were clinging to life in the meager sunshine allowed by the mouth of the mine soon gave way to completely still and barren landscape.

As they made there way into the depths of the mine the temperature began to drop. Chavik shivered slightly as the sweat began to evaporate from his body. The main shaft of the mine was tall enough to walk in while other offshoots looked barely big enough to crawl through. They had only been walking for about ten minutes when they came to an obstacle. Too many unknowns in a row. Was this a natural fall in or a deliberate effort by Earthcom to block accessability of the mine. The PDA had not shown this. Chavik was beginning to wonder about the intelligence for the operation.

Chavik gave Gallion an inquisitive look. They discussed the possibility of using a grenade to clear the rubble. Amid fears it would cause an even worse blockage then the one they were already looking at they decided to try it anyway. They set the grenade deep into the pile and ran back up the tunnel. Several seconds later they felt the concussion. Dust fell from the ceiling and the tunnel rumbled ominously for a few minutes as the shock and sound wave echoed around the various chambers in the mine.

They walked back to the site of the blockage. The dust was still heavy and thick with no air stirring. Another minutes wait and it finally settled enough to check things out. Chavik scrambled to the top of the pile and tried shining a light through. He set it down and began scraping from the top of the pile. After a few seconds he gave a whoop of delight. The others climbed to the top and began clearing path big enough for them to crawl through.

Dirty and tired the team made its way to the other end of the mine and waited on Blades.

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[rp]

Dust, dirt, and grime is what I spit outta my mouth after hitting the deck just before the grenade went off. Chavic and I went over the pros and cons of using explosives - of any type - to clear the rubble blocking the mine. My only question to him was, "Do you feel lucky?"

Obvisouly he did 'cause he was enlarging the small hole we'd made like a man possessed whilst I still was spitting foreign substances from me mouth. York was no help, he just grinned and swung them rags in his hand round and round.

Bah, bloomin idjits I say ... and York is enjoying this entirely to much.

But as they say in lala land - the show must go on. I scrambled to me feet and followed Chavic through the hole into the darkside of the moon. I noticed that the others of the point crew followed.

[/rp]

[ 10-21-2001: Message edited by: Gallion ]

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[rp]

Operation Golgotha

Earth, Mission Zone 13

Abandoned 23rd Century Mine Facility

Everyone had been waiting for too long as Diamond and Savage spoke amongst eachother, and for once Caine wasn't the only one getting antsy. But now that it was a combat situation, behind the lines, he was actually spending the energy to controll himself and focus of his tasks. So far things were going as had been planned, but the real fun was yet to start.

Finally the group ahead of him slinked into the cave and disappeared into the darkness. A minute later and the signal was given for them as well, and Caine stood from his place and made his way in. The darkness was overwhelming, and there wasn't even enough light for the enhancers to work with. That meant infra-red was in order. Touching a pair of commands into the armor's comp, the world turned grey and fuzzy, and an infra-red beam left the upper corner of his helmet to illuminate the barren rocks of his surroundings. The beams from his companions cut through the darkness as well and provided more than enough illumination to avoid any mishaps.

The group was only a few minutes behind Chavic's crew when their comms flared to life, and a calm monotone came to his ear.

"Fire in the hole."

Everyone slid to the sides of the cave and braced themselves just in time for a thunderous explosion to wash through the tunnel. The force-wave had been channeled through the tunnels and though weak could still be felt underfoot. Then the cave answered in kind with a rumble of it's own as dust and a few pebbles shook themselves free form the cavern roof.

*Great... if they didn't know we were coming, we just gave them a nice big friendly knock. I hope they don't monitor for explosions and tremors this far out or the game's over.*

Once the dust stopped falling and the ringing in their ears faded again, the clear signal was given and they moved on to find what the source of the disturbance was. A section of the tunnel gad been collapsed long time ago, and Chavic had just had it reopened. If that collapse had indeed been induced it would be guarenteed that there would have been monitors placed.

Caine was the fifth to scramble through the opening at the top, and he slid down the other side smoothly to wait for the last of the group before moving on.

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[rp]

Scholar moved into the cave behind Chavik, York and Gallion, and switched his DIE over to IR assist. The orange VR overlay helped augment his own vision in the almost-darkness of the cave. He picked his way through the rubble of ancient cave-ins and stalagmites, rifle at the ready, swinging slightly from side to side with each step, invisible infra-red light lancing into the darkness and parting it.

The silence was oppressive, and he could hear his own breathing echoing in his earpiece, amplified by the suits biofeedback equipment. Somewhere in the distance he could make out a drip of water. He reached forward and switched the rifle into mode 2 - it would utilise the Type 2 clip. Energy projectiles, rather than solid shells, would be quieter and less likely to trigger further rock-falls.

Another few steps into the darkness, and ahead, in the orange psuedo-light evinced by the darklight image enhancer, he saw Chavik raise one hand and call the halt. Scholar scuttled to the side of the cave, behind an outcrop, and took up a defensive position. He trained the rifle steadily on the curve in the tunnel as Chavik and Gallion disappeared around it.

"Rockfall. Obstruction. Just working out how to clear it," chatted Chavik quietly over the communications network. Scholar took a few deep breaths, focussin on the tunnel around them, before the silence was broken again.

"Fire in the hole," came Chavik's voice over the communications network. Scholar swore, and dug in, sheltering behind the rock outcrop.

The shockwave was massive, and Scholar felt himself almost lifted off the ground. As the first billow of dust wafted through the tunnel before them, Scholar pulled up the filtered breathing apparatus of the suit. His breath hissed slightly through the filter, but his mouth and nose remained clear of the cloying rock dust.

With a sigh, he rose and continued on down the corridor.

[/RP]

Is type 1 or type 2 the energy projectile clip? I'm not sure.

If you are using a ZS10, then Mode 2 uses a DUC projectile. No energy weapons are available unless one is using the wristlaser; which is part of a CMDR's suit. Check the BCM Appendix > FP Items for details

TTFN

Thanks for the reply, Gallion. I don't currently have a copy of the Appendix. What are the difference between the clips in terms of what types of projectiles they fire? I'm not able to run the demos and so haven't played FP.

-GD

-GD

[ 10-24-2001: Message edited by: Gallion ]

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Grr...This is going too slow! What's that matter with you boys?! School?! AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Sorry...*clears throat*

[rp]

"You led Akira into a trap because you didn't have any other choice. From this point on, you do. Because of your relationship with Rattler, I could understand your decision if you wanted to defect, even though I would never condone it. Your life as a Galcom officer is a hazardous one, and it would be even more so if you joined the Insurgents. Eventually, you will have to do something. The cold war between Galcom and the Insurgents is one step closer to becoming a real war every day. If that day ever comes, you're going to have to make a choice between your loyalty to Galcom - to me, and especially Blades - and to Rattler."

Akuma walked onto the bridge Foss' words ringing harshly in her ears. She had finally written up the documents and was simply waiting for Blades return before she could process them any further.

She approached Neena and saluted. "Commander..."

Neena turned her face hard like a rock. Showing no emotion. Her eyes danced in the flashing of the comms screens and data processors...And they seems a bit glossy...Pained.

Akuma lowered her salute and looked at her feet. "Look, Neena, I'm sorry for everything that's happened. Things got out of hand. Things changed too quickly. I was wondering if you'd like to join me for a drink in my quarters whenever you have the time. I would like to talk with you about this. Girl to girl and all that."

She raised her eyes and noticed that some of the officers on the bridge were looking at her. "Ah..." She cleared her throat. "Is there any news yet?"

[/rp]

There that should get things rolling shipside. I'm bored dammit! LET'S KICK SOME BUTT!

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I hate caves...

Don't get me wrong. I'm not claustrophobic, or anything. I hate caves of any kind. Last time I was in one... No, I won't go into that. That is how much I hate them. I also hate explosions in caves. I hate explosions in caves because, if someone inside the cave was looking for you, they would be led toward you. If someone was outside and looking for you while you were inside, they were usually the cause of the explosion, and subsequent cave-in, to trap you beneath the surface.

I hate caves...

The echo of the grenade detonating was far louder than the actual explosion. Maybe it was just my imagination running wild as the dust drifted around the corner. Leaning around, I saw the newly formed passage way, and York was endeavering to make it large enough for the group to get through.

Only one thought occurred to me as I noticed the dust and pebbles falling from the ceiling above.

I hate caves...

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[RP]

Operation Golgotha T + 1 hour 33 minutes

Earth, Mission Zone 13

Abandoned 23rd Century Mine Facility

Savage moved up to where Chaviks team were gathered a few moments after the shallow breeze from a naturally occurring vent had blown much of the dust past him. Upon reaching the huddled bunch of Insurgents and GalCom personnel, he perched by his old adversary and peered through the small gap the grenade had cleared in the cave in.

“Well at least you didn’t bring the whole roof down on us.” He said, his voice uncharacteristically devoid of humour. “I guess that’s something we should be happy about.”

Chavik coughed a couple of times into his fist and took a moment to compose himself. Savage regarded him with a concerned look. “You ok?” asked the Orion Fleet Commander.

Chavik turned his head and looked into Savages hard eyes. “I’ve been better.” Commented Chavik. “Much better in fact.”

Savage frowned and went to a side pocket in his jacket. A moment later he pulled out a small scanning device and passed it briefly over the Insurgent.

“Says here that you’re having difficulty breathing … respiration and heart rate is up.”

“So what else is new?” said Chavik, pushing himself to his feet and moving towards the small blast hole in the middle of the blockage.

Savage looked down at the scanned reading from the device and went over them once again in his head. The results were disturbing.

He’s deteriorating far quicker than he should be. Symptoms should be anywhere near as bad as this right now. Maybe he’s got something in him that’s making him far more susceptible that the others?

Pondering this wasn’t helping the situation, nor was it going to prolong Chaviks life if something wasn’t done about it soon.

What do I do? Call back the McKendrick? Have him return to the LZ and get picked up for early treatment? No, can’t do that. The entire mission would be in tatters. I can’t abort; we’ve come too far to turn back now.

Savage stood and watched while the rest of Chaviks team made short work of widening the gap in the blockage enough to allow single file movement through to the other side. He signalled back to the rest of his team and had them begin to move up as Chavik and the others pushed forward.

As he was making his way past the fleet commander, Foss felt a firm grip on his shoulder. He turned and found Savage looking hard at him, obviously greatly concerned about something.

“Something wrong sir?” asked Foss.

Savage nodded. “It’s Chavik. He’s sick, and getting sicker.”

Foss nodded. “I checked him out before we broke at the LZ. He was showing signs of respitory problems, but nothing too serious. I gave him a shot of Tri-Ex to help with his breathing, but theres nothing more I can safely do until we get back to the ship. If he’s getting worse we should probably have him stay behind while the rest of us move on and pick him up for the extraction.”

Savage shook his head. “We cant do that. We need him. Whats more, we need him healthy.”

“Sorry sir, theres nothing else I can do for him un-“

Savage cut him off as he pulled a phial of something from an interior pocket in his jacket and held it in front of the commander/combat medic.

Foss regarded it a few moments before an astonished realisation came over him. “Is that … what I think it is?”

Savage nodded. “I want you to administer it to him.”

Foss looked over his shoulder, then back to his commanding officer. He leaned in close and spoke softly. “Sir, I can’t give him that. It will kill him.”

“No,” started Savage. “It wont kill him. At least not yet.”

“No, not yet.” Said Foss, “but in less than twelve hours it will. Do you know what this stuff will do to him?”

Savage glared at his junior officer. “I know exactly what it will do to him, commander. It will make him better. It will allow him to operate as normal, perhaps even better for the next few hours. He’ll be more alert, faster, stronger – in short deadlier than he already is. And that’s what we need. An edge.”

“That kind of edge will kill him Karl. Kill him every bit as much as a pistol shot to his temple. This is nothing short of murder.”

“No!” said Savage, almost shouting and drawing the attention of two officers who were passing by at the time. He shot them a quick glare and gestured with his head for them to proceed onwards. After they passed, Savage took Foss by the arm and led him a short distance away from the main trail and continued.

“No, it’s not murder. He’s already dead. We’re all already dead.”

Foss frowned. “What do you mean dead? He’s no deader than you or ..”

Something seemed to dawn on Foss in that instant … and in the instants that followed, all became very clear to him.

“What did you do Karl? What have you done to us?”

Savage bowed his head briefly and drew in a deep breath. He took a moment to compose his thoughts, trying to find something eloquent enough to make his confession more palatable to his colleague, his friend. In the end, he gave up on any such noble gesture, and just told him the hard, cold facts.

“Before we left the ship everyone was inoculated with anti-tox just in case we ran into EarthCom chemical weapons. Well, it wasn’t just anti-tox that everyone was injected with. There was a time delayed agent injected into everyone that has been designed prevent details of this mission falling into enemy hands.”

“You …. Poisoned us?”

“Think of it as a fail safe, Foss. We couldn’t take the risk of having our secrets tortured out of us should we fail here today. I had to make sure that everyone that went down would either come back up alive, or stay down here and be dead.”

A cold shiver ran down Foss’s spine. The awful reality of the situation dawned on him.

“I can’t believe it,” he started, grabbing the fleet commander by the front of his jacket and pushing him hard into the tunnel wall behind him. “You bastard! You total son of a *****!”

“Quiet.” Whispered Savage, baring his teeth but otherwise not resisting.

“I wont be quiet damn you. You’ve set us all up to die. You recruited us for this suicide mission and made damn sure that it was a one way ticket.”

“There was no other way. You have to understand that.”

“No!” shouted Foss. “I’ll never understand that. Never understand why you felt compelled to do this. You’ve doomed us, one and all.”

Savage had heard enough. Foss reaction was also starting to get too loud for comfort. The fleet commander pushed out with both of his hands and grabbed Foss in a similar manner to which he was now held. He pushed himself forward and spun on his heel, taking Foss off balance and slamming him hard into the same tunnel wall where he had just occupied.

“Now you listen to me Foss, and you listen good. You knew that this mission could be a one way ticket, and you didn’t balk at that. Now you learn that we’re all sitting on a time bomb, and you’re getting twitchy? Whats the matter with you?”

Foss began to resist against the fleet commanders grip but was slammed back into the wall, hard. Dust fell from the impact against the wall and Savage heard an audible grunt from his friend as the wind was knocked out of him.

“We have one shot at this Foss, but if we blow it, we cannot be allowed to be taken captive. If we fail, we fail completely. We will not become their prisoners. We will not betray our friends and colleagues.”

Through gasps of breath, Foss fought hard to get his words out. “It was never about that.” He said, coughing through his words. “You didn’t give us the choice.”

Savage released him and stepped backwards. “I couldn’t.” said Savage. “We couldn’t take the chance.”

“We?” gasped Foss.

Savage nodded. “Me, Rattler, hell, even Neena was involved in the decision making process. We all hated the idea, but we all agreed it was the only way to be sure.”

By now Foss had regained enough strength to speak in complete sentences. He was still hunched over, but looked into the fleet commanders eyes as he spoke. “Why send us all on this mission to rescue a single man when so many have to be sacrificed. Why kill thirty of your friends and colleagues just for this one man?”

Savage sighed. “You know the reasons why David. You know what the alternative is.”

Foss cleared his throat and spat onto the floor. “The alternative would have left us alive and fighting Karl. Now all we have left to do is fight one last battle.”

“No,” started Savage. “if we fight and win, theres still a way out of this for us. If we get back to the ship in time we can be treated before it becomes fatal. But time is something we do not have in abundance.”

Again, Foss coughed and spat. “Why are you telling me this? Just to get me to administer your stimulant to Chavik?”

“Yes …. And because it’s the only way he’ll stay alive long enough to be useful to us. For some reason he’s reacting to the poison far quicker than the others. His symptoms shouldn’t be manifesting for another two hours yet. He should only start to get this sick once Akira is extracted. The stimulant will help him overcome them … it might even keep him alive long enough to get him and the rest of us back to the ship. I just don’t know, but I do know that without him our chances get downgraded from slim to none.”

Foss shook his head. “It’s just about the mission. That’s all it ever was from the moment this started.”

Foss sighed, and brought himself up to his full height before addressing the fleet commander again. “What happened to you Karl? When did you abandon your principles, you’re attitude towards human life?”

Savage frowned. “I never abandoned them David …. Just put them on hold. It had to be done. There wasn’t any choice in this.”

Foss glared at his fleet commander, and began to walk back towards the trail. As he passed, Savage held out an arm and blocked his path. In his hand he had the small phial he intended for use on Chavik. “There wasn’t any choice.”

Foss looked at the phial, recognised exactly what it represented, then took it and stepped past Savage without another word. As he continued down the path and towards the path through the blockage, he called back to the fleet commander.

“You’re wrong sir. You did have a choice. You chose not to choose. That’s where you went wrong.”

With that, Foss disappeared through the other side of the blockage and out of sight.

Operation Golgotha T + 1 hour 57 minutes

Earth, Mission Zone 13

Abandoned 23rd Century Mine Facility

The rest of the trek through the mine had been uneventful. Along the way, two more remote sensor units were discovered, uncovered and spoofed by Diamond and his box of tricks. A little further back the stash Diamond had spoken of was recovered and dispersed to the relevant people. Diamond took with him a series of det packs and holographic projection equipment while Savage had loaded up with an out of circulation sniper rifle and scope.

As Savage checked over the weapon, a few of those recruited made quietly sarcastic remarks as to why the man would opt for such a weapon when he seemed incapable of operating in a combat environment. Diamond, who had been in position to overhear these remarks quickly put to rest any suggestion that Savage couldn’t use it. This was further backed up when Gallion threw in his 0.2 cents, briefly regaling them with a tale from long ago when he and the then inept Savage had been a guests on a little known Insurgent commanders cruiser.

“He may not look or act like a soldier,” remarked Gallion, “but he has an eye for accuracy. If you ask me, he was wasted both as a file clerk and a commander. If he had the right training and discipline, he could have made a helluva cleaner …”

The brief stop off was soon halted when the troupe moved further into the cave and came across another small obstacle. A bridge covering a chasm spanning some thirty feet was damaged and looked incapable of supporting too much weight. Fortunately, single passage across the rickety bridge proved to be safe, if a little time consuming. Although ahead of schedule, they had little time remaining for other distractions.

Again the pace picked up, and soon Chaviks team reached the coordinates that Diamond had assured them was very near the exit to the cave where they could overlook the EarthCom barracks that guarded the entrance to Golgotha. Sure enough, the exit was not far from this point, and as Savages team caught up with the trailing elements of Chaviks, daylight could be seen from a vent not too far ahead.

It was nearly game time.

Operation Golgotha T + 2 hours 04 minutes

Earth, Mission Zone 13

Mine exit

“Well, here we are.” Said Diamond, surveying the terrain ahead of him with both Chavik and Savage directly behind.

The three of them were flat on their stomachs, peering carefully over the ridge down at the barracks and picking out individual guards.

“You think you can get down there without breaking your neck?” said Savage to Chavik.

The Insurgent grunted an affirmative, and put down his range finder a moment later. “I cant make out as many as we were expecting.” He said. “Perhaps this wont be such a chore after all?”

Savage snorted. “I hardly think this is the break we’ve been waiting for, and if it is, I would rather it had come later than now to be honest.”

“We take what we can get.” Said the Insurgent.

“Indeed.” Said Savage. As an after thought he added. “How are you feeling now?”

Chavik cocked his head and peered at the fleet commander. “Im touched, but I really don’t think this is the time for a get to know you session.”

“I wasn’t going to ask you for family holos or you shoe size, I want to know if you’re up for this.”

Chavik chuckled, then coughed. “Im feeling better. Foss gave me something that’s perked me up some. Still, if its all the same to you I’d rather be back in space than eating dirt with the likes of you. No offense.”

“None taken. Go get your team prepped and have the others hold back until I give them the signal.”

“What are you going to do?” asked Chavik.

Savage slithered back a few feet and sat upright. He pulled over his baggage and began to assemble his rifle. “Im going to get set up here and cover your ass, that’s what Im going to do.”

Chavik raised and eyebrow and flashed a worried glare at the grinning Diamond. “I doubt I need to remind you Savage, but we’re gonna be next to invisible down there. If you start shooting at targets and miss, you could accidentally take out one of us.”

Savage smirked at the Insurgent as he slapped the rifles magazine in place. “Don’t worry Chavik. I don’t miss.”

[/RP]

Bring it on!

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Didn't notice before, but we're in MZ13. Must be a fascination. IIRC, Our good friend SysEng Benni Arnauld was SE13...

[RP]

Operation Golgotha T + 1 hour 36 minutes

Earth, Mission Zone 13

Abandoned 23rd Century Mine Facility

The dust was settling now, the ionic field that kept the armoured suit's visor clear was humming, almost inaudibly, as the last specks of dust were gently wafted away from Scholar's vision. The mercenary took a few steps forward, before turning his ZS-10 to cover the rear of the party. He looked over his shoulder a couple of times and watched Chavik and the others scrabbling at the gap in the rock-fall to widen it.

The tunnel they were in faded to darkness behind them. They were far enough away from the entrance now that no daylight filtered through - they were operating off portable lights. Scholar switched his shoulder mounted lamp off and toggled his Image Enhancer to dark mode. The dark tunnel was suddenly clarified with a green overlay, combining infrared and other sub- or super-optical radiation into an artificial image.

No signs of movement.

There were a few more grunts behind him, and then Scholar heard Gallion speak.

"We're clear."

There was a shuffle of footsteps as the two teams began moving through the gap. Scholar walked behind them, covering their exit. He looked briefly at Chavik, and was shocked to see the Insurgent's pallor. He noticed one arm trembling, almost imperceptibly. He lowered his rifle for a moment, stepping forward, before a glare from the Insurgent rebuked him. He smiled, raising the ZS-10 once more, and gestured the Insurgent through.

Only two individuals remained - Commander Foss and Fleet Commander Blades. Scholar cleared his throat.

"I'll cover our exit, if you'd like to go through?" he asked quietly over the suit communications link. Blades shook his head.

"Go on ahead and hold the squad on the other side of the fall. We'll join you in a moment."

Scholar raised his eyebrows, and nodded. Shouldering the rifle, he struggled through the opening, twisting his armoured suit to fit through.

On the other side of the fall, the rest of the squad were waiting, weapons at the ready. Gallion, York, and Chavik looked over to Scholar, inquisitively. Scholar shook his head.

"Blades and Foss are still back there. They asked us to hold short."

Gallion looked sour. Diamond, standing quietly to one side, merely smiled.

Scholar worked his way back towards the fall, waiting quietly for the two men. As the minutes passed he grew impatient, then worried. They were holed up in some subterranean Earth Command hive, they'd just set off the mother of all door knockers, and Blades and Foss wanted to have some kind of romantic tete-a-tete! Sighing, he switched his DIE back to enhancement, and peered through the cleared rockfall.

He started when he saw Blades pinning Foss to the rock wall, swinging his weapon to the ready, but stopped when he saw the erratic Fleet Commander release the medic and let him stand. He briefly considered going to their aid, but then smiled.

That looked like the kind of conversation a wise man stays out of.

He wished for a moment he had a standard covert ops armoured suit, or even an intelligence kit with an audio amplifier - anything to be the proverbial fly on the wall.

The conversation broke up. Scholar watched as Blades threw his arm across the medic's chest, halting him, at the same time passing him a vial of some description.

A medication doser. This gets more and more interesting...

Operation Golgotha T + 1 hours 53 minutes

Earth, Mission Zone 13

Abandoned 23rd Century Mine Facility

A quarter of an hour later, they paused, Diamond raising one arm above his head signalling a halt. Scholar moved forward with the rest of Team Two to listen to the old marine's reason.

"It's an remote sensor, auto defence system. Just around the next bend."

"How do you know?" asked Nova curiously. The big marine looked at him sternly.

"You stay alive long in this game, you learn a few tricks. Those rocks over there are artificial. They're sensors."

"Have we tripped it?" asked Blades. Diamond shook his head in the negative.

"Earth Command don't pull punches. Not on special ops facilities like these. If we'd tripped it, we'd know by now. I'll access it and deal with it." Diamond was already opening one of the small, flat cases he'd brough with him - a tiny keypad with a holographic projector. A few keypresses and the holo-screen powered up. Diamond peered closely at it, tapping keys and grunting occasionally.

"Scanning channels... not on the usual frequencies, must be using some kind of modulator or scrambler... try a multi-layer search... hmm.. traces, can't lock onto it... decoder... must be something fairly new... heuristics..."

Scholar looked away, scanning the tunnel behind them. No signs of trouble.

"Got it! It's modulated and scrambled, think I can keep it locked... now to decode it... this should do it..." The marine looked up from the display, his grin made fiendish by the pale blue light of the holo-screen.

"This is why I've been living off the fat of the land for three months, Blades. You owe me."

Blades nodded. For a fraction of a second, his eyes betrayed a single shard of pain.

If only you knew how much.

The holoscreen began flashing codes and messages, Diamond responding to each one with a flurry of key-presses, until finally it shut off.

"Defence system has been repatched and will transmit all clear signals for the next twelve hours."

Blades nodded. "Good work, Diamond. When did you turn into a technogeek?"

"Don't believe I ever did, sir. Just like to keep those special forces boys on their toes. It pays to show them that the good old Mobile Infantry are capable of learning a few tricks. I suggest we continue, sir, time is of the essence."

Blades nodded. "I agree. Let's move on out. Nova, now you know what to look for - take the point."

Operation Golgotha T + 2 hours 4 minutes

Earth, Mission Zone 13

Abandoned 23rd Century Mine Facility

The sunlight was stronger now, slanting down the hillside as they emerged, skulking like rats and hugging the shadows. Scholar squinted, and then widened his eyes to adjust them to the light as his suit visor darkened automatically to compensate. He crouched down behind an outcropping, ZS-10 hot and raised, waiting for the first attack.

It didn't come.

Well bugger me if this insane scheme didn't actually work, the mercenary thought to himself wryly. Blades' voice sounded over the squad's communications network.

"Hold your positions, stay in cover. I'm taking a couple of people forward to reconnoitre."

Scholar peered over the boulder that provided his cover and watched as Blades, sniper rifle over one shoulder, scurried across the ground to the edge of the ridge, Chavik and Diamond close behind. He settled back into cover.

"So what do you think our chances are?" Scholar heard one of the Team One squad members ask over the commlink. He smiled to himself.

"One of Galactic Command's better Fleet Commanders in charge, a bunch of Insurgents used to fighting dirty? I'd say good," replied the mercenary softly.

He heard a short, sharp laugh. This one came from Mikel, the ISS marine sergeant.

"A group of rag-tag renegades with little ground experience trying to take on a fully operational and reinforced Earth Command garrison? I'd say bad."

Scholar smiled again.

"Call me an optimist."

He reached down to check the pocket compartment on the left thigh of his power armour. It slid open and he felt inside, the Earth Command identity tabs rattling around inside. Could be an ace in the hole, if they needed it.

Could be a damned liability, if they'd found that Earth Command patrol yet.

Scholar shook his head. Suddenly, there was a bad taste in his mouth. Almost like the taste of spilt blood. When had he stopped thinking in Terrans down there, living and breathing. Gammulans, fair enough, killing Gammulans posed no moral dilemma, it was practically a national passtime. But not Terrans.

Those Terrans are the ones that imprisoned you. Like they did Akira. You remember what they did to you...

It didn't make it any easier.

"Team Two." It was Chavik, this time, over the communications network.

"Assume secured communications, preset one, on my mark. Mark."

Scholar toggled the switches on the armour control panel, switching the integrated communications system over to the secure circuit Diamond had provided them from his 'stash'. When Chavik's voice was heard again, it was being scrambled and encrypted, so it would be undetectable to outside sources.

"Move forward to the ridge side. Ensure your delta suits are operational, we're about to go hot and live. See you in two."

And as Scholar began his descent down the slope, feeling the energy of the Insurgent technology crackling around him, pervading his body and soul, knowing he was invisible to the EarthCOM guards, unable to see his comrades-in-arms, only to detect their progress down the slope by the crunch of their footsteps and the occasional fall of pebbles and grit they dislodged - even though all of this would stay with him forever - there was one sight that he would never, ever forget.

The look on Blades face, as he lay on his stomach, sighting down the scope of the BMP-9 sniper rifle. The look of anger, of pain, of despair. The look on the face of a man who was preparing himself in the knowledge that he may not return.

Scholar hadn't been a mercenary for long, but he'd been a judge of men for a lot longer. And he knew that possibly before, and certainly after, Blades would never be content to fight his battles from behind a desk or a datapad. Orion Fleet's leader had found the warrior spirit that eluded so many others.

Perhaps it would be enough. Perhaps not. All that was left now was time for a few fervent prayers for forgiveness and survival, and then the battle.

Game time.

[/RP]

Oh yeah baby! I am so ready for this! Bring it on!

-GD

[ 11-25-2001: Message edited by: DeSylva ]

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“You’re wrong sir. You did have a choice. You chose not to choose. That’s where you went wrong.”

I turned without another word and headed through the passage. In my veins, I could almost feel the poison flowing through. I could almost feel the monster that was just waiting for the right moment to flare up and take us all down.

I caught up to Chavik, getting his attention as silently as I could.

"What's that?" he asked, indicating the vial in my hand.

"Something to help you last a bit longer in your old age." I said, trying my damndest to mask the dread of what I was about to do behind a wall of something resembling a sincere smile.

It must have worked. Chavik took the shot with only a mild glare at my comment. While I was administering it, I leaned in close.

"When we find Akira, I want you to be the first one out of here. First one back to the LZ. No heroics. This will only relieve your symptoms temporarily. If they return before we get back, let me know, but there's nothing more that I can safely do until we get back to the ship."

"What do you mean..."

"You're reacting to something, sir. I'm not sure what, and I can't tell with this equipment. This is a general relaxant. It will help you deal with whatever it is and keep you alert, but it won't last more than a couple of hours."

The shot finished, Chavik continued on. I wasn't sure if he said anything or not. I was still trying to wrap my brain around the concept of what had just been done to us...

And of what I'd just done to Chavik. If he did as his doctor told him, he would make it back. If not... No, I didn't want to think about that. It'd be far worse than hightened respiration. It'd probably be akin to ones heart exploding. Probably.

I didn't want to wait around to find out. I continued forward, not looking back at the Fleet Commander who had just signed our death certificates.

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AHA! Finally going again! Now if only i can remember what team I was on... LOL!

[rp]

Earth, mission zone 13

Still in that infernal cave.

After the last of the team Caine was stationed with moved on, the merc took a last look at the new door and frowned. He didn't like things already and that was a bad sign. Turning smoothly, he resumed his position and pushed it from his head.

The next while was little more than drudgery. Climbing small slopes, scrabbling through narrow slits, and choking on dust the ionizer missed. At least he had the mixed fortune of having been in combat against his own kind. Of course in a fight it doesn't matter who the enemy is... especially in his line of work. They fought to kill you by any means necessary, and you did the same. Nothing personal, that's just the way it's done.

Finally the first nav was met, and he stood just within the slanting shadow of the caves mouth. After pausing to switch off the visual enhancers, he began checking his weapons. The red zone was just ahead, and he would be damned if a gun wasn't prepared. The safeties on his pistols were tripped, the rounds chambered, then he turned to his rifle. He turned it back to single-fire, and popped the caps from the scope. Then he turned to the commander that stood in the enterance, holding a remarkably dependable old model. One he knew well.

It's funny... I know guns better than my mission-mates. Caine had to disguise a chuckle at himself, then he piped up.

"I'll take a slightly different spot, in case you miss one... that is unless you have other plans for me." His tone was only slightly mocking... more of a silent challenge. After catching an order he casually switched his band, and waited for a reply.

[/rp]

[ 11-29-2001: Message edited by: Caine ]

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[RP]

Operation Golgotha T + 2 hours 09 minutes

Earth, Mission Zone 13

Verge Overlooking Golgotha

Savage pulled his head from the scope of his rifle and shot Caine a bitter look.

“Now’s not the time to be a wiseass, Caine. You wanna bullshit me, do it when we get back. For now, pitch tent and count heads. Keep that trigger finger of yours steady and wait for orders.”

The Orion Fleet Commander looked back into the rifles scope and tried to ignore the glare he felt from the draftee. He knew better than most that he was an unpopular figure this trip out, and considering the circumstances they were now all in, he doubted that his popularity rating would go up when (If) they managed to get back to the real world.

But right now none of that mattered. He didn’t give a damn if they despised him. So long as they followed orders and didn’t screw up, that would be good enough. For now.

Without taking his eye away from the scope, he activated the ear mounted lash unit and spoke quietly into it.

“Chavik, are you and your team in position yet?”

A moment passed before the Insurgent Commander responded.

“Negative. We still got a little ways to go before we’re in position. How are we on time?”

Savage responded immediately. “Cutting it fine. Im still only making out eight contacts, which means theres still four unaccounted for. Caine and I have beads on several of the guards on the west, and north flank. Chances are theres at least two out of sight in operations. You need to get to them first and shut down contact with the security centre below.”

“I know the drill Savage. We had the briefing, remember?”

“Understood. Let me know when your in position.”

“Roger. Chavik out.”

The time it took Chavik and his team to negotiate the rocky terrain to their go position seemed to last an eternity. Savage found himself checking and re-checking the scopes calibration. When he wasn’t doing this, he was peering to his right at Caine, who was sitting still and comfortable with his own weapon. He didn’t seem to be half as nervous as what Savage now felt, although behind all that bravado and arrogance, he figured he was only just barley keeping the contents of his stomach from nervously escaping. At least, he hoped so. Then at least he’d have company.

“Team one, this is team two. We are ready for a go. Any last requests?”

Savage took a deep breath and counted back from three. When he finished, he knew he was commited.

“Team two, this is team one. You are a go.”

“Roger. Powering up the stealth suits …. Now.”

Abruptly, the signal died. For the next few minutes, it would be impossible to contact any of team two due to the dispersion effect caused by the suits internal generators. Now all he and Caine could do was watch …. And wait for the blood letting to begin.

[/RP]

Chav, Nova, Gallion, Foss and whoever else the other two members of this team are, nows your chance to do your thing. If you don’t start posting quickly, me n Caine are gonna have a field day popping heads and we don’t want all the glory here.

Oh yeah, now the teams are seperated (At least initially) use the appropriate threads.

[ 12-05-2001: Message edited by: Blades ]

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Out-of-context (OOC):

So, I'm on Team Two? I wasn't sure at first, but, okay....

This is going to get so interesting.... I'll post soon.

[ 12-07-2001: Message edited by: Cmdr Nova ]

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[rp]

Operation Golgotha T + 2 hours 09 minutes

Interogation Room

A wet rag squished. It was the sound most of Akira's body was making as the ‘muscle’ pounded his point home.

"We know why you were there, Akira. We've got your ship's data. We know everything. Well, nearly everything." The man in the unmarked black jump suit crossed the few feet from his chair to Akira's slumped body. "We know where you hide your little secrets," he whispered, "but we don't know all of the secrets. Tell us the rest of it and give me a reason to put you out of your misery."

The man strolled back to his chair and sat.

"You only know what I..." Akira let loose a gurgling deep cough from somewhere below his gut. "What I want you to know."

The man nodded to the two others behind Akira. They picked up the limp Insurgent and hung him like a piece of beef from they're massive arms. Akira hung there, limp and threadbare.

"You fooled our conventional measures. You masked something from our brain scans. You've managed to stay alive longer than any other human in my...care. Mostly because I wanted you alive." He pulled a thin silver pick like device from a pocket along his back. The tip seemed to emit a light that was bright but failed to cast light past a few millimeters beyond the source.

Akira new what the item was immediately. No one in his experience had ever survived that device. A neural stimulator was the best description but still fell far short of its capabilities. It was a device of Syrion origin intended, most thought, as a last resort defense mechanism much like a marine's K-bar knife. Only, this item could do far more damage with bloodshed only when the operator wished it. It gave pain, caused pain, was pain and so much more. Akira closed his eyes and began to mumble.

"Familiar with this? Of course you are. I'm really surprised that we didn't find one on your person. It's quite a nice little device, no?" He held the glowing tip up to his face and slowly twisted it admiring the seamless mirror. "Some say the Syrions used this device for pleasure and even mating. I've yet to find a partner that enjoyed it as much as I." He dragged the tip lightly across Akira’s sunken abdomen.

Akira's body bowed outward toward the man appearing to gravitate toward the instrument as it brushed his skin. His mouth opened to let out a scream but nothing more than a slight breath was able to escape. His eyes rolled back in his head.

"Easy there," the man said pulling away the needle like object, "I don't want you dead, yet." Akira whimpered. "Oh, come now. Let's not have any of that. Maintain your composure, man. It wasn't that bad and it will get worse. Save the tears for then." Akira started mumbling to himself between strained breaths.

"Feel like talking? Speak up." He poked Akira in the left armpit. A loud pop was followed by a scream so primal both the guards stepped away. Akira dropped to the floor like so much meat. His hands, bound behind him, planted firm on the floor and propped his body up like a tripod. There was silence as the human doll sat there, head back, mouth wide open as if its soul was about to launch from it and make an escape.

"Don't die on me, Akira. There's more fun to be had." The man held the device an inch from Akira's chest and brushed his thumb slightly. A blue arc leapt from the tip and drove into Akira's chest. Akira's body convulsed. The man drove his boot into Akira's diaphragm. "Wake up, you shit! I'm not done."

Akira sucked in air as his lungs struggled with equalizing the negative pressure in his chest. Another loud pop reverberated around the walls as Akira's body twitched and threw his other arm out of socket as well. Akira fell to his side, his body curled involuntarily into a fetal position as Akira stared at the man's mirror shined boot.

The man crouched and grabbed the skull of the limp bodied fool he saw before him. "Feel like talking now?" Akira gurgled something as his eyelids twitched rapidly. "I didn't quite hear that. Again, please." Akira gurgled again slightly fainter this time. The man moved closer and whispered, "Again."

Akira launched a volley of blood, spit, and bile in the man's ear, across his face and down the opening of the man's jumpsuit. The man jumped back reflexively. He took another step, whipping at his eyes and tripped over the chair. He attempted to recover in mid fall. There was a crunch as the blind twisting drove the man's head sideways upon the chairs cold long steel.

The two goons rushed forward to assist their boss. Akira was left alone for a moment. It was all he needed. He curled a little more and slipped his arms under his butt and past his feet.

"Call for the medic!" The man on the left screamed at his companion.

"I can't, that idiot stripped me of everything just like you. Here, brace his neck and help me roll him on his back." The two had all but forgot about the meat laying on the floor behind them.

A glint of light caught Akira's eye as he struggled to tear the plastic zip ties around his wrist with his teeth. He stopped shredding with his jaw and allowed himself a slow Cheshire-cat smile.

"Is he breathing?" the first asked.

"How the **** should I know!" the other barked back

"Put your ear to his mouth, you ass. If he dies we're beyond help." The two were doing the best they could to check their boss's vitals.

"He'll live," Akira whispered to the second just before he drove the tip of the spike into the small of the man's back. There was a snap as the man's spine was shattered. The guard slumped and gasped for air like a fish out of water. He was paralyzed from the neck down.

The other guard wasn't as easy. He dropped his boss's head to the floor and was back to the wall opposite Akira before the head thumped. Akira stood slowly not showing any of the extreme fatigue he'd expressed just moments before.

The smile was still on his face. Added to the twitch of his left eye, Akira seemed the wrath of a million god's as he methodically removed his bindings while staring through the oaf.

"That's why you always smuggle something, you friggin snot," the guard said under his breath. He grabbed at a ring on his belt and pulled out a rather lengthy bit of razor line, a metal ring at either end. He placed his middle fingers in each ring and smiled.

"He wanted you alive, Insurgent. I'm just gonna have to explain how it was self-defense when they try to put your head back on your neck." He crouched slightly and held the razor wire in front of him.

Still smiling, Akira backed to the wall and slammed his left shoulder followed by his right sharply against the wall. He grimaced momentarily as the pain from his shoulders flared as the balls found home in their sockets. He slowly stretched while smiling at the man in front of him.

"C'mon, you git. Let's get this over already. I'll not be havin any of that kung fu bullshit here." The sweat building up on the guard's forehead belied his confidence.

Akira slipped the metallic device into his shirtsleeve and held his hands palm ward toward the other man. The other understood the 'no weapon' gesture but wasn't going to fall for that. He shook his head slowly in response.

Akira frowned for a moment and then slowly smiled again. The guard broke into a cold sweat as he understood that his once prisoner was more than happy to fight an armed opponent

"I'm going to eat your liver for lunch, slant eyes," the man roared as he leapt forward. He whipped the wire at Akira's face. Akira wasn't there. The man quickly spun with his arm outstretched, fist balled. Akira wasn't behind him either. The man yelled and jumped backward.

Akira let out a grunt as the mass of the heavily muscled man slammed him against the wall. The guard dropped, spun around and brought his fist upward to connect with Akira's most vulnerable parts. The wall shook as the man's fist glanced off the metallic surface.

"Fack!" He yelled, trying to open his fingers and take hold of the other end of the wire. Akira planted a bare foot into the man's exposed right side just under the armpit into the ribs. Several made audible sharp sounds as the boned cracked.

The large man spun to his left and brought the razor wire to bear where Akira should've been. Akira landed softly once more behind his keeper. He drove his fist between the man's spine and right shoulder blade and drove two inches beyond the point of impact. The connective tissue ripped.

The man spun once more, trying to minimize Akira's blow. It wasn't enough, but he was able to scramble away from the man with the devilish, hungry grin on his face.

"****ing HELP!" the man screamed. It did now good. The metal box they were in was sound proofed to keep sensitive types from ever understanding the horrors that played out inside.

Right side all but useless, the guard slid along the wall to the corner to his right. He whipped the razor wire wildly in front of him. Akira just smiled and watched. He knew that with every swing, the man was driving the loose ribs into his right lung.

As if on cue, the man coughed a spray of blood. He dropped the wire and grabbed at his right side. Akira slipped the silvery death into his hand and walked calmly to the man. A look of horror came over the guard's as he looked on the face of death itself.

"You don't have much time to live. I'd give you about 2 minutes before your lungs fill with blood and you suffocate. I can take away the pain. Maybe even enough for you to walk to the medical station in time to save your life. Just give me the code to the door and we'll both wake to another day."

"Not even if I had the code, Insurgent. You'll die here with me." he gurgled.

"You're not of any use to me then." Akira tapped the man's forehead between the eyes. A gray mush tinged with rivers of red oozed from the man's ears. "Your boss was right when he said that I knew what this was."

Akira walked to the unconscious man in the middle of the room. He passed the wand over the man's head. A reddish line of light cascaded along the unnamed man's skull. "You'll not die today. I still need you. But you will wake up with a hummer of a headache tomorrow."

Akira crouched in the corner to the right of the door. He passed the wand over the more abused parts of his body. A bluish light was emitted this time. The Syrions used this device as an all inclusive medical system, you idiot, he thought. Those cold bastards don't have sex. If you'd pull your head out of your ass and do some research you'd know that.

Akira could feel the healing process start. It would be a while before he was fully healed. But, it seemed he had nothing but time right now. These rooms were designed to be opened only by the interrogator that went in. There were no man-sized openings. No windows, and only a few holes for what Akira assumed was fresh air or lethal gasses. Should the unforeseeable happen, and the interrogator was to die, all those left alive would stay safely inside and die of dehydration or hunger.

Akira flicked the wand device off and slid it back into his sleeve. Normally, he'd have any number of devices to punch a hole through the door. Sadly, he wasn't wearing anything but an issued inmates jumpsuit. No pockets and only velcro to fasten it closed. He searched the Interrogator and the two guards. The only thing useful was a pair of boots just a size too large.

The only thing he could do now was sleep. He slumped down in the corner to the right of the door again. The wand slid back into his palm and he stroked its cold length. Get here soon, Rattler. I'd rather not use this on myself... Akira slept.

[/rp]

[ 12-07-2001: Message edited by: Akira ]

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Oh baby, a buncha nice ones!

[rp]

Earth mission-zone 13

“Now’s not the time to be a wiseass, Caine. You wanna bullshit me, do it when we get back. For now, pitch tent and count heads. Keep that trigger finger of yours steady and wait for orders.”

Caine couldn't help but glare at the man for a moment, even if his respect was raised a notch. Or maybe because of it. In either case it lasted only a moment. Then a half-smile broke out under his helmet. "Aye, I'll do that."

Crunching ground led off to Blades' right, and Caine slinked out of the cave opening. He had little trouble finding a comfortable spot. About ten meters off there was a tree that split about a meter up it's trunk. It rose at a steep angle from the hillside, and the merc braced one foot against the trunk, leaning back into the shadows. He wasted no time in scanning for targets, the range-finder ticking off the meters on his HUD.

Eight contacts, four to find. That was unacceptable to the merc. He had to find the rest before the first shots were fired. An unseen enemy was the bane of any op. As the merc searched he had to smile again at the irony.

"Caught two more contestants Blades. They just arrived on lookout 4. One at radio, the other at the window."

His voice was but a whisper, and as he spoke the scope zoomed to full 8X mag.

"They're isolated. Tag, watch, or drop?" His finger slid beside the rifle's trigger.

[/rp]

Battle mode... engage.

Tag= report position then ignore

watch= focus on them, as soon as the shite hits take them down

drop= Duh.

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[RP]

"I've been better," said Chavik, "Much better in fact". What he really wanted to say was that he felt better than three day old dog poop, but just barely. Funny how humor felt like sracasm when you were sick he reflected. The trek through the mine had been rough. Foss's damn shot had made him more flushed than ever. When Blades next asked him how he was feeling he couldn't help but be sarcastic. "Im feeling better. Foss gave me something that’s perked me up some. Still, if its all the same to you I’d rather be back in space than eating dirt with the likes of you. No offense."

Blades didn't notice. "None taken. Go get your team prepped and have the others hold back until I give them the signal.” Chavik felt worse. When Blades told him he was going to stay behind and cover him he took a glance at Diamond who was grinning savagely. After warning Blades to be careful while they were cloaked Blades came back with a vey chilling "I don't miss."

Chavik went back into the cave to think for a bit. He was feeling worse than ever. The shot Foss gave him didn't seem to be helping. He sat down on a rock and put his head in his hands. Then the nausea started. Wave after wave rolled over his gut till it broke over the proverbial dam. Chavik heaved and heaved again. The third time was the charm as his stomach finally voided it's contents. Lunch was first; then breakfast came later, then finally yesterday's dinner.

Two more small heaves later Chavik felt a good deal better. He walked back to his team and checked the comm system. Then they were off. He had thoughts of cloaking and staying behind but decided against it. A mission was a mission. Even with the veiled threat in Blades' reassurance he was sure Blades would do the right thing if only to hide the fact that they were there.

Upon reaching position Chavik realized he was worn out again. The nausea was gone but he felt weak and tired. Too tired to be effective. He activated the comms one more time and told the team his situation and that they should do whatever necessary to accomplish the mission.

With his team on free reign Chavik headed towards the command post hoping he would feel better by then.

[/RP]

Not my best. Run with it guys.

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Well, I've been away for far too long. Now that I have finally caught up with the reading part it is time to catch up with the writing part. It's been so long I have forgotten certain details from my own part of the story . No matter I am acquainting myself with that as well and I have noticed that now that I think about it that I am a different person than I was then. Whether this will improve my writing or not has yet to be seen.

Glad to be back, and as always enjoy...

[RP]

Operation Golgotha T + 2 hours 10 minutes

GCV-Mckendrick

Detention hold

Jet's internal repair systems had completed their work and he was back to his passive, sane self. He looked up at the mercenary that was guarding him, examined the man, looking for a weakness. He had learned in his long life that everyone had a weakness but only the noblest of men didn't have a price.

Jet stood and began to pace about the room, there were some habits that still stayed with him. The Merc looked up from the datapad he was looking at.

"Finally up and about are you?" the merc asked retorically.

"I suppose you feel superior because you are on the other side of this force field. Well remember this, we are both in cages, yours is just bigger than mine," Jet replied, still pacing about.

"You may be right about that android, but remember this, I can kill you much easier than you me."

"I died long ago, you just don't understand what death really is."

Operation Golgotha T + 2 hours 10 minutes

GCV-McKendrick

Galley

Zeke had worked out the final parts of his plan in his head as he sat in the corner of the room, in the shadow between two lights. He knew that a couple marines had taken notice of him and had been silently watching him for the past hour. One of them was pretending to be trying to fix his DIE unit and every one in a while would pretend to test it to actually see what Zeke was up to. Zeke was both fortunate and unfortunate, his bionic eye was better than any DIE unit he knew of but he only had one. Plus his opaque eye tended to draw more attention than he wanted sometimes.

Finally the marines stood and approached him, hands on their Scat1 Pistols, Zeke casually aimed his wrist laser at one of their heads and with his other hand reached down for one of his own Scat1's.

"Stand and identify yourself," one of the marines piped up.

"I prefer to sit. And the name is Frank LeBlanc, I'm one of the mercenaries your Fleet Commander hired."

The marines looked at each other and then back at Zeke, "Why are you still on the ship and not on the surface?"

"I was injured fighting Gammulans," it was the half truth...and at that point Zeke wondered what ever came of his nemesis from the engine room.

The marines took their hands away from their weapons and in turn Zeke diverted the aim of his wrist laser but still kept his other on his pistol. "Seems valid enough, but we'll be watching you," the marines warned and walked out of the galley.

A few minutes later Zeke also left the galley in order to initiate part one of his plan to retrieve Mr. Thompson.

UCV-Susceptor

Bridge

"Keep searching, they have to be out there somewhere," Jesse Black order the crew. After receiving their orders to report they had been searching around the area where they suspected the transmission came from. They knew the shuttle was cloaked and figured the ship they were pursuing must have been cloaked, although were unsure how a transport could cloak. Because of their close vicinity to Galcom Patrolled space they were also under cloak.

"One of our probes has detected increased energy emissions around Earth, almost like a transport." the TacOps Officer announced.

"Can you localize it?"

"Trying . . . they just destroyed the probe."

"Set a course for Earth," Jesse ordered.

"The ship is beginning to show signs of radiation," and officer announced.

Jesse sighed, "Bring down the cloak, as soon we can recloak and head for Earth, I'll be in Engineering."

With that she stood and exited the bridge.

[/RP]

Well I hope I can stay with it this time....Merry Christmas everyone.

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