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Into The Fire Act Five - Operation Golgotha


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GCV McKendrick

Briefing Room

Somerset had seated himself amongst most of the GalCom officers for Savage's briefing. He listened intently and winced numerous times at the apparent hastiness with which the operation was planned.

Somerset was very much a man of the old school. He much preferred good intelligence with a well thought out plan and every concievable contingency worked out. This kind of of haphazard planning made him groan internally. Too many times he'd seen good officers come up with plans like this only to have them blow up in their faces.

Take Rinaal for example. For years they'd known that Rinaal would be one of the first places overrun when the Gamms came out for war again. So they'd planned for what would happen when they did come. Every possiblity thought of, every contingency worked out. As a result Wraith turned out a hell of a performance with highly disproportinate loss rate between themselves and the Gamms. Of course, it resulted in a court of inquiry and a reprimand for him, and the court-martial for Gallion. However it had also a great number of lives that otherwise would have been lost.

On the other hand this was one of the other kinds of plans. Hastily put together, not well thought out, and far too many holes open for the opponent to go right through. They'd be lucky to get halfway through the operation without everyone getting killed.

Two hours was too much time for something to go wrong. More than once he'd seen, and sometimes been directly involved in, Marine operations that looked quite promising initially and then been shot to pieces within two hours of landing. Those ops had been some of the hastily thought out ones, without proper intel, and no possibility of reinforcement.

Which sounded greatly like Operation Golgotha. "And who in the hell came up with the name Golgotha?" Somerset thought. "For the love of God, they don't even know where one of the primary mission objectives is located!"

He brought his mind back to reality, as Savage started taking questions. Of course, the Insurgent advocated dropping weapons on the target even though Savage wanted to keep the casualties down to a minimum.

He heard Gallion speak up, and put his foot in his mouth yet again. The Corsair was wily, certainly crazy, and was sitting next to an Insurgent. That particular idea he did not like at all.

He'd always felt that Gallion had sympathist tendencies toward the Insurgents. Some people just didn't understand that the Insurgents were the enemy.

Obviously Savage didn't, and neither did most of his own command staff. The need to keep the Insurgency from starting a conflict with GalCom at the present moment he understood. But once all of the higher up Insurgents were located in the same place, why not arrest them? The arms of the Insurgency would still be in place but with the head gone, it would die.

Perhaps the idea had occured to Savage. He hoped so. But meantime, he needed to keep an eye on Gallion. His unstable personality, current problems with GalCom, and his sympathist tendencies made him quite untrustworthy.

Which meant he had some planning of his own to do.

GCV McKendrick

Cargo Bay 1

After the briefing and getting his shots from the pharmasicst's mate he stopped off at Cargo Bay 1 to talk to the Quartermaster. The droid automatically stood and saluted at the sight of a Commanders uniform. "How may I help you, sir?" the droid said respectfully.

He returned the salute, and as the droid moved to an at-ease position, he recited his equipment list. "I need a Medium Combat Suit with backpack, ZS10 with 5 clips, 5 frag grenades, a TDU and a commlink delivered to my cabin in 5 minutes."

"Aye aye, sir," the QM droid responded automatically.

Somerset nodded, and headed for his cabin.

GCV McKendrick

Guest Quarters Cabin 12

He pulled the standard issue datapad from its holder as the door chimed. "Come", he said as the door slid open.

Two droids entered, the first one saying "The equipment you requested, sir."

"Very well. Put it all on the bunk."

"Aye aye, sir," they both intoned. After they completed their task, the droids stood to attention and told Somerset "Task completed. Awaiting instructions."

"That's all. You're dismissed," he told them. The droids saluted and waited his return salute before leaving the cabin, the door hissing shut behind them.

"Now for the fun part," he said aloud as he started his work. He reached into his kit bag and pulled out a small box, setting it down on the desk. He picked up the commlink, the datapad, and activated the light.

In the low lit darkness, he began his work. Interfacing the datapad with the commlink, he started looking over the commlink's software. The first thing he did was delete the message headers that identified this commlink as belonging to the GCV McKendrick. This way any outgoing communications from this commlink wouldn't identify what ship it belonged to.

He then opened the box, and took out a case of datachips. Removing the one marked "Encryption Theta" he slid it into the datachip, and copied the contents into the commlink. Sliding it back into the case, he pulled out another marked, "Commlink ops reprogram". Once the program was copied the commlink requested him to speak for 15 seconds.

After he finished speaking, the commlink quaintly replied to him, "Voiceprint match complete. Commlink will now only respond to this voiceprint. Encryption and systems reprogram complete, Commander Somerset."

"Sometimes it pays to have a computer expert aboard your ship,"Somerset thought, chuckling to himself. "Still one more thing to do, though"

He put the datachips back in the box and pulled out another small case containing tools. Opening the commlinks case, he exposed the interior components. After making some deft adjustments to the circutry he forced the commlink to interface itself with the Combat Suits internal commlink, and for his personal comm to override the suitcom.

He disconnected the commlink from the datapad, and affixed it to his hand. Then he used the datapad to access the ships secure data files. Inputting his own authorization codes, he looked at the most recently downloaded Fleet deployements. The SIN Wing deployment in particular, and was pleased with the results. Two of his ships were stationed at Earth, awaiting orders to the forward area. The Redoubtable and the Valiant.

There was a reason to his rhyme. His own ship, the Swiftsure was to move back to Earth orbit after completing repairs. Knowing his own chief and first lieutenant, Somerset figured they had been there for 36 hours.

He also knew that the Graf Spee was out there somewhere too. The crew had been trained by the crazy Corsair, and were probably shaped in his own image.

Being an old military history buff, Somerset had looked up the records of ships to bear the name Graf Spee. The record of the Kriegsmarine ship to bear her name was near astonishing. So was the record of her Captain, Hans Langsdorff. After being forced to scuttle his ship he killed himself in his hotel room with the Kaiserlichemarine naval ensign of World War I underneath him. So to his mind, Somerset believed that ships named Graf Spee had great battle records but also had crazy Commanders.

After this mission was over, it was his job to stop the Graf Spee's crazy Commander from whatever travesty he had up his sleeve.


For those wondering, Somerset won't compromise the current mission or its objectives. What happens after depends on the Graf Spee, and the crazy Corsair.

[ 07-30-2001: Message edited by: Ben Somerset ]

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Briefing Room


Operation Golgotha T - 2 hours

He'd sat at the back. Amongst the rabble of assorted Insurgent and GalCOM commanders, he was hardly noticable, but he noticed Akuma throwing a glance his way. He ignored it, face impassive.

He watched carefully as Blades and Rattler strode out before the assembled crew, looking for some hint, some sign, some kind of way of knowing how the next few hours would go. Rattler walked confidently. Blades less so. It made sense, though. Rattler had nothing to lose - Blades had everything. After all, at the end of the day, Blades was only fighting for his life and his country.

Rattler was fighting for his soul.

The briefing was succint and to the point. A certain amount of judicious supposition had revealed the only real course the plan could take, in any case.

The mercnary known as Scholar could see the confusion on the faces of the gathered troops. The plan was no plan at all, really - it was a frontal assault with a twist. The only thing that was going to pull it off was the sheer grit of those involved.

Surveying the faces of those around him, battle scarred and hardened by war or the effort of preventing it, Scholar suspected Blades and Rattler had made the right choices.

There were no doubt many questions presenting themselves to the gathered troops, but Scholar had the advantage of knowing Golgotha far brtter than any one of them. He had only one question.

He cleared his throat, and saw the tiniest start from the Orion Fleet Commander when Blades noticed him in the back of the room.

"Are we to have our selection of the McKendrick's arms and armour before this mission? I realise we all have our personal light arms, but we're going to need some heavier hitters and some decent armour if we're going to last through any kind of sustained assault."

Blades nodded. "I understand, but we cannot afford to compromise the security of the McKendrick."

Scholar tried to suppress a smile. "That needn't be a problem. We're all soldiers, we know how to keep track of our weapons. Before we transport out, we set an incendiary and dump the weapons. No evidence."

Blades frowned. "I'll consider it. Next question?"

Scholar nodded. "Yeah. I'll be placed on Team 2." It was a statement.

"Well, Chavik hasn't -"

He was interrupted by a whisper from Rattler, and he turned to look at Chavik. The three men - Chavik, Rattler, and Blades - seemed to communicate something in that moment, before Rattler nodded once. Blades looked back at the mercenary and smiled, although it was a cold smile.

"Very well. You're in."


Deck 2 Corridor


Operation Golgotha T - 1.8 hours

"Who are you? Scholar?"

Scholar stopped dead in the corridor. One set of footsteps - the voice was unmistakeably Blades. Assessment: no threat.

He didn't bother turning around.

"I am a mercenary working for the Mars DeHavillard Regiment. I was selected to provide security on the SS Vulture for -"

Blades cut him off. "Who are you really, Scholar?" Blades asked again, voice grating with sarcasm.

This time, Scholar turned around to face the Fleet Commander. His face was sharpened in the harsh, unnatural lighting of the corridor.

"I am an ally."

"How do I know?"

"Take my word for it."

"Why should I?"

Scholar smiled. "Because you don't want me as an enemy."

Blades' eyes narrowed and he leaned forward slightly. "Are you threatening me?"

Scholar shook his head. "I have better things to do, Mister Blades."

Blades continued on another tack. "Where did you get the datatab you gave to Akuma?"

"I know nothing about any datatab or Ms. Minako."

"We both know that's a damned lie."

Scholar grinned. "Well...in the hypothetical situation that I had, in fact, had some contact with Ms. Minako, and given here some kind of data storage unit...let's say it could have come from a friend."

"A friend?" Blades asked. Scholar nodded.

"An old friend."

Blades shook his head. "I know that. You know I know that. Where is that old friend now?"

"I'm not at liberty to divulge that information."

"He's alive?"

"Or that information."

"Is he aware of this mission?"

"If he were indeed alive, Mister Blades, I would be keeping him updated."

"But it's up to me to figure it out?"

"You got it."

Blades sighed.

"So why did Rattler want some mysterious mercenary on Chavik's team, Scholar?"

Scholar heard the footsteps approaching, and gently shifted his balance. He relaxed when an imposing figure in mirrored glasses rounded the corner. It was Rattler, and he spoke as he approahced the other two.

"Rattler chose Scholar because he is known to the Insurgency. He's responsible for revealing to Spectre where Akira was being held."

Blades looked between the two men. "How much do you know, Scholar?"

"More than you will ever understand, Mister Blades."

Blades shook his head in disgust. "We're done here. I don't like playing games, mercenary. I have things to discuss with Rattler. Get your shots."

Scholar nodded, and snapped off a lazy salute. Blades just sneered at him, before walking away with Rattler. Scholar smiled again, but this time, it was a sad smile.

If only you know, Blades. This was never a game.


Okay! Just my contribution. standard disclaimers apply...

1) If Blades or Rattler need me to change anything, I'm happy to - as usual, this is all spur of the moment.

2) I'd like to be included on team 2 - my character has a vested interest in getting to Akira. I authorise Blades or Rattler to use Scholar as they see fit if I do not have time to post.

Let's bring it on!

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Briefing Room

GCV - McKendrick

Alec immediately noticed the wry smile Blades gave, as he replied.

Damnit! He remembered the scene at the galley....

After Gallion's question, and exit from the briefing room, Blades dismissed everyone, with this to say:

"Good luck to you all, and may the fates smile down on you this day. Dismissed."

Nova took those words with a cringe. He knew with every breath, and every moment, he was getting closer to the mission. Closer to the enemy. Closer to probable death. He knew he couldn't back out now, and decided to go on to medibay.

He mumbled, "Fates? Damnit, I don't believe in fate. And what we need, is a miracle. That, and a few fully loaded ATVs."

And so, Nova and everyone else left the Briefing Room, and headed into Medibay, for their injections.

Nova finally decided to go along with the mission, without anymore qualms and/or drunken remarks. Hopefully everyone gets out alive, he thought.

War was truly beckoning.



Trannsporter Room

GCV - McKendrick

Ready, and suited up for the mission, Nova, and all the others going down, gathered in the Transporter Room. Everyone else was in full gear as well, and most were hyping themselves up for battle.

The other surviving mercenary, going down to Golgotha, Caine, began to speak.

"Anyone have experience in this type of a fight?"

Only a couple nodded. Nova did have experience on the ground, but didn't nod, because this was a different mission. He decided that this would be one of the most difficult, because they didn't even know how many people they would have to face.

Heh, he's probably thinking, "Damnit, now we really are all gonna die." Then again, I could be wrong.

The visors on almost everyone's face was closed, now. They were just minutes from the transfer. All they awaited, was the final words from Blades, and then they would be off.


[ 08-02-2001: Message edited by: Cmdr Nova ]

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Heh, now it gets fun!




Jo shtann spun on her communications officer, a glint of hope and relief in her eyes.

"Find it's source! I don't care how you do it, find where that signal came from!"

Huber blanched slightly, and gave a hesitant "...aye". He then focused on the panel before him, bringing up stats, figures, replaying the signal over and over. They were minutes away from reaching where htey figured he was being taken, but they still didn't know why, or even where exactly.

Huber even listened to the near second of audio that came through, searching for some hint...any hint. But all he heard sounded like someone whapping a microphone against a table, accompanied with a bunch of static...then the beginnings of laughter, that got cut off. They had nothing.

"I'm sorry, Jo. We don't have enough to find out anything."


GCV Mckendrick

Transporter room 1

Caine's laughter faded quickly as he stood in his place, awaiting the drop. It was replaced by a stony silence, as he stared straight in front of himself, unmoving. If anyone would have seen his eyes, they would have seen a harsh, cold stare that was devoid of any emotion.


In the words of a certain desperado...

"Let's play."

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Maddox walked around the bridge. He concentrated on what was being asked of him. It was near impossible. We had snuck into GalCom territory, were about an hour from the moon, and we are looking for someone named Caine, supposedly Jo's husband. Maddox just wanted to go home. He missed his GARID cruiser, this transport had no standard armament, it had plenty of non-standard though. And ontop of that Maddox had just given them the ability to scan and passby GalCom ships with out being detected. This was getiing out of hand, and what about these reports of something called Golgotha?? Maddox didn't know half of what was going on, but he did know that he was in way over his head. He stood staring out the meter-thick clear glass and watched as a GARID class ship floated by, the sun glinting off of the new plate armor. Maddox stared at its simplistic beauty, the oversized engines, the two PTA guns, the shuttle launch bay, nothing fancy, but it was Maddox's ship of choice. He glanced at the COMM station, wondering if the ship belonged to a commander he knew, he looked at the ship registry name and did almost a double take when he realized that the name of the ship was Harksrader.

He turned to Jo and said, "That's my ship. They gave someone my ship, I don't believe it."

He turned and walked over to the Turbolift, he walked inside and said one word. "Personal Quarters A-17." The computer acknowledged with a solitary beep.


thought I'd stir things up a little. All the good stuff was settling to the bottom

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The ship the LEO had been inadvertantly tailing passed from their short range scanners as it continued to earth, while Jo had the ship slowed in preparation of orbit, still several thousand clicks away from the moon.

The ship was still in yellow status, and was constantly ducking the scanners of one ship or another. The traffic was getting thick, and Jo wasn't sure if the cloak would keep them hidden, despite the modifications.

The main viewer brought up the latest close call, a Garid-class, passed by. As the ship was just exiting their prescribed "Danger zone" of detection, Maddox seemed to blanche, shaking his head. Worried they had been detected, Jo turned to their guest commander.

"That's my ship. They gave someone my ship, I don't believe it."

He then stood, and made his way to the turbolift. A short security officer stepped in front of him to try and stop him, but a harsh stare that seemed to say "What are you going to do about it?" sent him aside, allowing the man through. Before the doors had even closed, his voice rang out hard.

The instant the doors closed, Jo turned to Huber. She didn't want Maddox doing anything foolish out of anger.

"Already on it Jo."

Huber was tapping away at the control panel before she even opened her mouth. For a new officer to the ship, he was learning fast. She liked that. A few seconds later, Huber reported that external comminucations had been locked down.

Nodding, Jo stood, and entered the lift, a duty officer promptly taking her place. As the doors closed, Jo gave a last order.

"Keep looking for Caine."

She then repeated Maddox's order, and the lift dropped her off on deck 3, aft.


She called to the empty hall, looking left and right to see where he went.


And the chase is on

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Ahhhh chasing me are you??


Maddox walked down corridor after corridor, tryin' to think where he was going, he passed door after door, all of the sudden, he heard the warning sirings and an electronic voice saying "intruder alert," then the sirins stopped, then they started again, then they stopped. Maddox went down to Engineering to see what was going on, but he smelled the sight before he saw it. There were skeletons every where, rubbed clean from something, Maddox turned on his radiation scanner, but it was broken, he walked into the Engineering doorway, the small dagger he kept hidden under his clothes in his hand. He took a quick glance over the section of ship before him, He then walked in.

"Maddox?? Maddox, wake up!"

Maddox came to staring into the deep eyes of Jo, He quickly looked to see where he was. A quick assesment told him he was in his quarters, Smith at his side.

"What happened?" He asked.

"A hallocogen, you were hit by a dart saturated in it, it appears we have a sabotuer on board."

Maddox just stared into those deep eyes, at a loss for words.

[/RP] Aren't I bad??

[ 08-09-2001: Message edited by: BCFreak13 ]

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downright evil ...I LIKE IT!


Jo helped the groggy man to his feet, balancing him with her left arm while she lifted a sidearm into her right. The dart still layed on the floor, the steel needle red.

"It must've been one of the new recruits. Dammit! I knew we should've screened them."

Jo wasn't speaking to anyone in partcular as she led Maddox towards a turbolift.


Jo froze in place as the sound of a round being chambered echoed down the hall. It was only a smallarm by the sound, but she wasn't in armor either.

"Commander...if you would be so kind..." The voice was female.

Jo muttered a curse under her breath, then held out her pistol, which was promptly taken from her.

"What's the plan now?"

Jo felt a hand push Maddox away, then rip the scabbard that held her twin to Caine's knife off her hip.

"Simple. We decloak, and turn you in for the bounty. You've been gone for two years, ma'am, and the price on your head has grown considerably in your absence."

Jo could almost feel the smirk at her back.


tee hee... now it's REALLY interesting

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Good i like it


Maddox was fored to one knee, his head still spinning, he sat there for a moment, just trying to get his head to work, he finally recovered enough to crawl into the turbo lift as the would be kidnapper was frisking Jo, he grabbed the emergency sidearm from its hidden cabinet and aimed it at the head of the attacker, he flipped the setting to wide stun and fired once, both Jo and the attacker went down in a heap, he got up and drug Jo into the lift, He said bridge before the drug took full affect on him, he passed out and his heart slowly stopped beating.


Save me I don't want to die!!!

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"Stations, intruder alert. Repeat, Intruder alert."

The flat, atonal sound of the general alert slowly brought Jo back to consciousness, the low thrumm of decks passing by sounding in the small lift.

Her eyes slowly cleared as the numbness of the stun blast wore off.

Looking down on Maddox, Jo was thrown alert, and she leapt to her feet, swaying from the bout of nausia that flooded her.

"Jo...Jo to bridge. Status report... What the hells going on?"

There ws no reply. The signal was being blocked by Huber's communication lockout.

"Damn!...Computer, this is first officer Jo Shtann, prepare for voiceprint override of communications ban."

There was a slight atonal beep, then the computer replied in it's pleasant atonal voice.

"Restricted acess, Level four."

Jo was at a loss.

"What?" As the computer re-stated the restriction matter-of-factly, Jo was already planning. The level four restriction was clever. It meant that it required the use of both Jo's and Caine's voice.

But with an intruder alert, the bridge was all but sealed off. There was no way anyone could get in there this fast, and all the officers in there save Huber were with them from the start, and Huber imself had no knowledge, or authority to do that. Especially when surrounded by the others. It had to have been done in Engineering, or one of the acess tubes.

Jo took note of the sudden paleness of Maddox, and checked for a pulse.

"Dammit all to hell! What next!!?" His heart had stopped. Thankfully the lift was stopping on deck two, deck one being locked down on the alert. She hefted the officer, and ran down the hallways towards medibay. Time was running out, and for all the Vesperon knew, the cloak was already down.

Thankfully the halls were empty, and she didn't have to worry about judging who was a mutineer, and who wasn't. In seconds she burst through the doors, and came face to face with five different varieties of pistol, each held by one of the med staff.

"Sorry ma'am, precaution. What happened?"

The med pointed to Maddox.

"A narco drug. I'm guessing a nasty dose too." Jo laid the man down on a bed. Lock this place down, and treat him. I have a few betrayers to find."

She snagged a rifle from the medibay locker. (One of the wonderfull things about merc ships...everyone knows how to use a gun, and they are always made available.) It was a standard mark nine semi-auto. Tough, dependable, and deals a sh** kickin whallop. The next thing on her list was armor. And she was working against the clock. Huber was good, but a decent hacking platform could work faster than any human.


Caine's still waiting for the beam down to begin.

Your turn Maddox. When you wake up, you'll see the meds guarding the door as one looks you over. To your right is an open panel that used to conceal a weapon unit with a rifle missing. there is another rifle inside, several empty pistol slots, and a combat knife in it's sheath. Jo is nowhere to be seen.

There are four crewmembers involved. One is still on deck three, one on deck five somewhere, one in aft engineering working his post, secretly trying to down the cloak, and one in an acess tube trying to usurp controll from the bridge. Happy hunting!

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I paid attention to the briefing. Heard the questions, heard the answers. I even read the expressions of every man and woman in the room. But to all outward appearances, I might as well have not been there at all. Outwardly, I was staring, very intently, at Commander Minako.

She was distracted, worried about something. Judging from her expression whenever she looked at me, she was definately angry. Most likely the fact that Blades was going along on this mission.

Well, why shouldn't she be worried and angry? After all, Blades had just given us the the plain, no sugar-coated truth, that we were likely not going to make it back. Given their apparent new-found feelings for each other, that was understandable. And to think that not even a week ago, Savage had been a mere heartbeat from blowing her and the Tenchi into atoms, believing her to be a defecting officer.

I was making her nervous, I guess. I figure that due to the fact that as soon as the briefing was over, she was on her feet heading for the door. I followed, keeping a respectful distance. It wasn't long before we were in a corridor that was empty enough for me to talk to her. With just less than an hour before we left. Now would be the best time.

She apparently thought the same, if not for the same reasons. She spun around, speaking angrily. "What do you want?"

"I want to talk to you." I said insistently, pulling her aside.

We headed down the corridor, away from as many people as we could, before I stopped and turned to face her.

She was visibly confused, even worried, perhaps.

"What do you..." She started to ask, but I cut her off, answering her question.

"Remember our conversation aboard the Vulture?"

Akuma furrowed her brow in concentration. Finally, she responded. "About the kid who...?"

"Yeah, that conversation."

"Yes, I do, but what does that have to do with..."

"Everything, Akuma. Your brother died because you couldn't do anything. That kid died because I didn't do anything. 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."

Then, I stopped softening the words. "You might someday have to decide who you're going to shoot. Personally, I hope that day never comes for you, but if it does... Don't make the choice to do nothing!"

As I turned to leave, Akuma's eyes softened, and tears began to show. I wiped them gently away, letting a faint smile show. Then, I headed down to the medical bay for my shots. So many things had changed during the past week. Something felt out of place about this mission. I couldn't understand why I had such a sense of forboding, of unease... no, of terror, about it. Something told me, deep down, that this mission was going to change my life forever.

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You're evil. I'll take the one in Egineering, I'll use a pistol and that knife.


Maddox woke up to find that a full stage lockdown was in place. The medic simply said that Jo wanted him out of here A.S.A.P. and he should look for the defectors.

Maddox got up and looked and the weapons cabinet, maddox grabbed the other rifle, some spare ammo packs, and the hunting knife he strapped to his leg under his pants.

Minutes later Maddox was in his personal quarters, he gave Smith the rifle and grabbed his two GalCom issue pressure pistols, and the spare packs for them, he hooked the holdsters to his belt, but held onto the guns, he locked his quarters and continued down the hall.

Maddox got to engineering with little trouble, the lifts wouldn't open for his voice, but he used the sevice shafts instead.

Maddox was thinking about the key pionts in engineering, when he heard a cuss, it wasn't a Valkery speaking so it wasn't Jo, Maddox took the safeties off his pistols and climbed into the opened acess panel, he saw the rear of a human working on what looked like auxialary bridge controls, Madfdox shot him 5 times with out a single word, and he then threw the body down the 5 stories of service shaft to his demise. Maddox hacked into comm. controls and spoke into the microphone that was present.

"This is Commander Maddox, I am in service sfaft juncture A-20 and I have killed one of the intruders that was trying to take control of the ship, Can anyone hear me?"

"This is Comm officer Huber, on perscan we show that one of the intruders has gained acess to engineering and killed all inside, he has nbarred the doors, we need you to get down there and help Jo, we don't know her present status."

Maddox climbed down the service shaft to Level 4, right over engineering, he checked his ammo and blew a hole in the floor and dropped into the service closet of engineering, he climbed out of the closet and continued into engineering, what he saw made him freeze in his tracks, 15 dead bodies stacked up on the main control panels. Maddox then saw the open door of engineering, Jo's rifle sitting in the doorway, not allowing the automated doors to shut.


Your turn, this is getting fun, we should continue the storys of these commanders even after Operation GolGatha, just a suggestion but it might be fun

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'course you realise that Caine would come too, if he survives the op that is



Main engineering.

Jo was pinned down, her rifle laying on the floor, trapped by the main door to engineering, her pistol empty.

"Give it up captain!" A voice called from across the room.

Were almost ready to drop the cloak, and collect our reward! I'm sure if you don't fuss that you'll get a fair court-martial, and at least die with some dignity. Wouldn't that be nicer than a shot in the face? Hmmm?"

The Vesperon was getting annoyed. It was bad enough he had her on the ropes, but did he have to talk so damn much?

Jo leapt across a small divide between consoles, landing on her shoulders and rolling to safety behind the reinforced steel, as several bolts of energy shot past, scoring the deck and hitting an already dead body, frying the panel underneath.

The surge caused a feedback that shut down the lights in the entire room, and they were cast into pure blackness in the windowless room. The only light came in through the crack of the jamed door.

Just then Jo heard a muffled explosion from behind a pressure-suit locker, and the flash blew the door open. As the light faded, Jo saw a shadow drop into the room. The other figure saw as well from his hiding place amongst several panels.

"Johnston? That you? Why aren't you working on the cloak?"


Glad you could join us Foss!

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Oohhh good one


Maddox quickly lobbed a flash granade into the middle of the room and squeezed his eyes shut. The resulting blast blinded Jo as well as the intruders, Maddox flipped a switch in the cabinet restoring power, he shot the first intruder between the eyes. The second he unloaded the rest of the right hand gun into him-5 shots in all. The mangled body fell to the floor, clearly dead. Maddox then ran over to Jo and used the hunting knife to cut the roped binding her hands and feet.

"Glad to see me?"


Sorry, I would have gone into more detail, but I am short on time today.

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umm, a few odd details there...Jo wasn't tied, and she was only pinned by one man. he mistook you for one of the co-conspirators.


UCV 'LEO, Engineering.

As Maddox helped Jo to her feet, he saw that her light armor was burned in several places. None of the small-arm fire actually got through the reinforced ceramic and steel, but the heat from the gunfire would likely leave a few nasty burns.

"I'm allright, but the bastard fried a few of the controlls. We might be floating right now for all I know."

Jo moved to one of the untouched panels, and tried to patch through to the bridge, but it seemed that Communication was down again.

"I don't have a clue how many are in on this...but they're going to pay for what they've done."

She kicked the mangled body, gaining little satisfaction. She then reached down, and took the remaining E-clip to his pistol, and slapped it into her own as she thought.

Near as I can figure, there should be at least one in the tubes somewhere, coordinating things and doing the hardware work.

She returned to the undamaged panel, and tapped a few controls. At her commands, a 3D wireframe of the ship appeared, and began rotating as the ship's internal sensors did their work.

"Here, " She tossed the man an earpiece, "I'll let you know when I find him. Start crawling."

She turned back to the image as small red dots began appearing across the decks, denoting where there had been movement at the time of the scan. Just as Maddox turned to leave, she reached out, and took hold of his shoulder.

"Watch your ass, these people are good. Otherwise I wouldn't have hired them in the first place."

Her eyes met his, and they bore honest concern for his well-being, though the motives behind them were unclear.

She then let go, and concentrated on her work.


Warning, the man in the tubes is wearing heavy armor, and has beepers set at each junction that leads to him. Trip one and there'll be...well...maybe a few bloodcells that could be scraped off the wall for burial.

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Mind if I take a shortcut??


Maddox crawled through the crawlspace and listened as Jo rattled off the coordinates of the man, Section 32 Tube 35-B. Alex crawled to tube 35-A and looked for sensors that would alert the intruder to Maddox's location. He saw one. He quietly put the trigger to the lock off door to key to his communicator. He went the long way around to the other access place, there was another sensor. Maddox thought slowly about his options. Then he shut the door at the other end with his comm. Then he drew the two Compression Pistols, and popped in a new cartridge on both before crawling into the access panel. He set off the alarm intemtionally. He heard scuttling moving away from him. Maddox then went into the corridor and shut the lockdown door. Preventing any escape. Maddox then went further in until he saw the foot of the intruder. He didn't care about the foot, but what was on it. Heavy Armor. Maddox pressed a bottun on his Panel Armor that made a helmet portrude from the back plate and covered up Maddox's head. Maddox the took aim and shot the cable which gave power to the crawlspace lights. The Night Vision kicked in automatically and Maddox saw the Intruder whip around, but he had no helmet Maddox ducked as the intruder fired off a shot to try to gain some light. Then Maddox started pumping the triggers on the pistols sending round after round pulsing into the man's cheast and when that wouldn't work. He shot the man in the head sufficently killing him. Maddox then spoke into his Comm. "Jo? This is Maddox I got the last of 'em. I am stuck in tube 35-B. If you would open the doors for me.."


Aren't I good??

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yup, but a little careless >

Sorry if this post is a little long though... you caught me in a writing mood



Just as Maddox had begun to speak, there was the hiss of one of the doors opening behind him. Looking back, he was just in time to watch an armored arm throw a container. It bounced and rolled down the tube right to his feet, a white label sitting upright and easy to read.


Maddox turned away, covering his faceplate just as a hollow *Thoom* washed his back with heat, and a brilliant white light flashed through the cracks between his fingers. Though the effect of the flash was lessoned to a degree, his vision was still clouded and full of spots.

Then a second grenade rolled in behind it, and the hatch sealed once again. The tactic was pretty standard, and Maddox already knew what was coming. A stunner.

Jo still hovered above the console as red dots moved and shifted on the holo-display. She had seen the second red dot nearing Maddox, but communications were fluctuating off and on, making any coherent warning impossible.

Suddenly, the entire section that Maddox sat in was whitewashed as the signal was disturbed for several seconds. (From the stunner, tee hee )

"Maddox? Maddox!! Respond dammit!...damn comms!" She hit the display in anger, and the 3d display shifted and flickered.

Finally, the door to engineering opened behind her.

"Where have you been Maddox? I've been trying to raise you."

"That really is a shame, deerie."

The female voice was accompanied by the click of a rifle. And the figure of the female officer appeared before her, coming to a stop across the panel, the mark nine trained on Jo's chest. Even in a new suit, there was no way she would survive a direct hit at that range.

"You haven't won the day yet kitty, you've just forced me to do things myself. No matter. Less money to split."

The officer grinned as she watched Jo grinding her fanged teeth together. There had to be some way to... her rifle! With the door open, it wasn't trapped any more. If only she could make it.

Jo dropped to the ground, hearing the concussion rifle bark as a round tore through the panel, showering her with shrapnel.

She then leapt for her gun as another round was chambered, the world turning slow motion as the spent casing ejected from the housing with a whisp of smoke.

Jo landed, and slid into the rifle, cradeling it against herself as she came up into a military roll. Three shots rang out, impacting the reinforced steel deck inches from Jo Shtann's form as she came up, and took aim, holding the rifle one-handed, bracing herself with her still casted arm.

Another shot rang out, and a bullet left the barrel of Jo's gun amidst a puff of smoke. It was followed by a second and third that left the barrel milliseconds apart, the short burst cutting through the air as the woman dove for cover.

Time returned to normal for Jo as a stream of rapid fire drew it's way to and across the panel the officer hid behind, sending exploding shrapnel out in all directions. Lights flickered, innumerable displays were blanked out, and sparks showered the area. Even the reinforced shielding protecting the core had numerous black scars across it during the intense firefight.


The rifle was empty, and the pins clacked uselessly inside the rifle's burning hot housing, smoke still flowing from the barrel.


Jo heard the sound just behind her head, accompanied by heavy breathing.

"That's it, kitty. I'm through playing. Screw the reward. It's time you died."

Jo saw a spot of blood from the corner of her eye. She had scored at least one hit to be remembered by. Satisfied, she closed her eyes.

"Good game." Jo smiled, accepting her fate. the fate of most mercenaries.


The sound surprised the Vesperon, but she wasn't one to look a gift from the gods in the mouth. She spun around just as the woman shouted a surprised "What the...", knocking the rifle aside with her casted arm, pain lancing with the impact. In the same motion, her good hand reached behind her, and drew her knife, raising it to the woman's chest.

The blade hummed as it's super sharp edge pierced between the chest and abdomen plates of the heavy armor, sparking as it entered. The woman grunted, her mouth dropping open as her head turned down, eyes falling on the blood that already poured from her, running down Jo's blade, and over her armored hand.

Jo stood, lifting the blade deeper into the woman's body, sinking it to the hilt, gaining a satisfying gasp of pain. Pressing a stud, the dagger spread apart, the blade separating down the middle.

The dead body of the former officer slumped to the ground, falling away from Jo's blade and laying still, lifeless eyes reflecting the sparks that still showered around them in Engineering.


How's that for a show-stopper?

[ 08-14-2001: Message edited by: Caine ]

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Why do I get stunned?? Well I got nothing to say as I'M OUT COLD


The armored guard dragged Maddox's limp body bacvk to their head quarters where he was put out cold. And held as a hostage


There the shortest RP post on this thread

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my bad, I assumed you would find a way to lesson the effects of the stun, and it was the last person, the woman you stunned on deck three, the same one who then made her way to Engineering to snag me. She was the last one...hence the show-stopper ending. No biggie, you can always edit the book you just wrote :lol


GCV Mckendrick

Transport room two

Caine was getting impatient. The minutes ticking by as drop time came closer and closer. It was always like this for him just before combat. Time would seem to slow down, untill it oozed it's way to the beginning of the op. But then, the instant the first shot was fired, it would all go by in a blur of shooting, running, hiding, and killing.

His helmet slid from side to side as he looked around himself.

Where the hell is blades, or whoever's in charge here. We should be dropping by now!

[ 08-16-2001: Message edited by: Caine ]

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Transporter Room


Operation Golgotha T-8 minutes

Savage stepped into the rapidly filling transporter room and looked around at the gathered commanders, mercs and Insurgent personnel. Several of them had kitted themselves out in standard and non standard combat garb. A few had retained the weapons they had confiscated from the abortive Gammulan assault on the Vulture, and others had raided the ships armoury for weapons. Some even had body armour in place, especially the surviving mercs and a couple of the more paranoid Insurgents.

Not that I blame them, thought Savage but perhaps a little premature.

Savage himself had changed from his usual GalCom colours into something a little less conspicuous. Although he had always been more comfortable in civilian garb, it did take something away from his authority.

He wasn’t as intimidating dressed up as Joe Average, not that many of the people gathered here today would think him any more intimidating if he was in full uniform. The rank of Fleet Commander never rested well with those that served under him, mostly due to the circumstances of his initial promotion and the fact that many privately regarded him as a bumbling buffoon.

Still, regardless of what popular opinion about him was, those that he had worked with these many years new better than that. He may not have been the great military leader that people expected, but as far as running the Orion Fleet was concerned, he knew his shit.

Four years ago, after the infamous Chikuma incident, command needed a bureaucrat to put the fleet back in order. A warrior wasn’t going to be able to juggle finances, tighten the budget, micromanage personnel etc etc half as efficiently as what a desk jockey could. They needed someone the public could have faith in. Someone that could get the job done and then quietly fade away from the public view. Once that had been done, it would be time to replace him with a real commander.

Savage always knew this was to be the way, but as fate would have it, things were never as quiet as what command had wanted. Somehow, command forgot to replace him once the fleet was functional again. Either that, or there was a shortage of competent personnel to take his place. Regardless, four years later he was still the Fleet Commander … and it was only recently that he realised that he actually liked the job. Even more surprisingly, he was getting quite good at it.

“All present and accounted for, sir.” Said a voice to his side.

Savage blinked away his train of thought and look at the commander who had addressed him. “Everyone?”

Greg Miller nodded back at him. “Well, everyone bar a couple. I just got word from Foss in the infirmary, he’s had his shots and processed the last of them. We’ll be ready to drop in five.”

“Good.” Said Savage, then chuckled at the irony of that word. “You have your instructions Greg. Whatever happens, make sure you keep to the program.”

“I’ll do that sir.”

“And remember this … you may be in command now, but it’s still Neenas ship. Work with her, not against her. You are two of the best there are, and I don’t need a conflict at this stage of the day.”

Greg nodded and clasped a hand on his friends arm. “I still wish you’d let me come with you. Reynolds too.”

Savage sighed. “No you don’t Greg. You don’t want to be down there any more than I do. And Reynolds, well, Im greatful for his loyalty, but he’d only slow us down. He knows that, I know it.”

Savage shook his head. “He’s needed on the bridge anyway. Back with his old crew, doing what he does best.”

“Yeah, I haven’t seen him so cheerful around other people, well, ever.”

“Yeah, it’s kinda worrying seeing him enjoy himself considering what we’re about to do.”

Greg smirked. “This is home to him Karl. This is where he wanted to be. If it hadn’t been for the injury, he’d be here.”

“And I would have been without the best chief of station comms in the whole of GalCom. Still, no time to dwell on what ifs.”

At that moment, the last two members of the team one entered the transporter room, with Foss bringing up the rear. Savage excused himself from Greg and hustled up to Foss.

“All done?” asked Savage.

“Check.” Said Foss, slinging a carryall over his shoulder.

Savage looked at the bag. “That one of Chaviks presents in there?”

Foss nodded. “He kitted me out a few minutes ago. Not exactly happy about wearing this thing, but when needs must …”

“Needs must.” Said Savage. “Be careful down there Foss. Don’t get dead.”

Foss smiled at his commander. “It would never happen sir. Someone has got to be around to keep you and Akuma in check.”

“True enough.” Said Savage. “Good hunting.”



Operation Golgotha T-2 minutes

The bridge of the GCV-McKendrick was subdued despite the presence of some of the galaxies most notable names and faces. Neena sat in her command chair, arms folded, looking into the big viewscreen wondering about the next 6 hours. Over at a side terminal, sitting quietly behind those mirrored glasses was Rattler, ever silent and watchful. Occupying the console behind him was Reynolds, carefully checking Earthcom comms frequencies, watching for any indication that the mission was in jeopardy of being discovered.

“We’re approaching optimal beam out position.” Reported the young officer assigned to TacOps.

“Time?” asked Neena.

“We are at T- 1 minute, 18 seconds commander.” Reported Reynolds.

The turbo lift entrance to the bridge swooshed open as Reynolds finished speaking, and a tired looking Akuma Minako stepped onto the bridge. Neena didn’t acknowledge her, just continued to stare forward at the viewscreen.

“How long?” asked Akuma, approaching Neenas command chair from behind.

Neena inwardly grimaced.

Don’t blame her, she thought. It’s just the way things happen sometimes.

“One minute to beam out. Reynolds, patch me through the transporter room.”

Reynolds nodded and quickly opened up a comms frequency. “Link established.”

Neena cleared her throat, then spoke. “Transporter room, this is the bridge. Standby for beam out.”

It was Savage who replied to her. “Thanks bridge. We’re all ready and happy to play here. Coordinates look good, and everyone is in position. Any last requests?”

Just one, thought Neena. Come back Karl …

“Pick me up a souveneer if you get the chance, and make sure you don’t trip up over yourselves, it’s dark down there.”

“Roger bridge. Thanks for the warning. Savage out.”

The commlink went dead, and Neena closed her eyes and sunk back into her chair. “It’s gametime people. Lets try not to mess this one up.”

“Aye sir!” came a resounding cry from her bridge crew.

“Entering optimal beam down position.” Said the TacOps officer. “Transporter systems reading go. We can transport at your discretion, sir.”

Akuma stepped up directly behind Neena, and rested a palm on the top of her chair. Both of them looked out at the viewscreen, down at the Earth and wondered if they would ever see their friends, their loved ones return safely again.

“Have courage,” Said Rattler from the corner. “and they will prevail.”

I really hope you’re right. thought Neena. I really do ….


Operation Golgotha T + 0


I’ll probably post again in a few hours. If you want to jump the gun, go ahead. Know this, where everyone appears is dark, hilly and desolate. Nobody around but us chickens. We’re still 2 hours away from hitting the facility, but we got a fair bit of ground to cover, including meeting up with the surface operatives and getting kitted out. Don’t stray from the beam down location until after I have posted.

Now we go.

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GCV Mckendrick

Transporter room

Drop time T-20

Caine was smiling again as time to drop finally came, and everyone made ready. The op was set, drop was imminent, and there was no turning back now. It was going to be a good day.

The man made sure his eqipment was secure, then casually took his place on the transporter. Just before beam-down, he slapped one of the others nearby on the shoulder. Then once again the world went dim. When it returned, it was still dim. As his eyes adjusted to the low light, they took in the barren landscape where he stood. He preferred to avoid using light enhancement as long as possable during the night... it helped keep him alert, and sometimes eyes see what electronics can't.

Even as the others were still coming down, he was moving low to the ground, making sure all was clear for the path they would take.

It was all business for him... a business he rather liked.


Jo shtann stayed in engineering only long enough for the crews to be given their orders. The dead were to be treated with according respect, the survivors were to be hauled to the medibay, and a crew of the few remaining engineers were given the daunting task of rebuilding the thrashed engineering. Thankfully Huber had already transferred the controlls of the ship to Sciences on the bridge, otherwise there would have been a lot more to deal with. As it was, they were lucky.

When everyone knew what had to be done, Jo finally shed her armor, and returned to Med herself to have the burns on her chest treated. As she stepped in, she spied out Maddox as well. He looked a little ruffled...but none the worse for wear.

"So...what do you think of Merc life so far? As soon as we're done here, I'm heading back to the bridge to keep looking for Caine. We're running out of time, and we can't make the necessary fine adjustments to keep the cloak at peak anymore. From what Huber told me, we have maybe four hours left now...instead of six."


Notice the timing anyone? I'm hoping if this panns right that we'll be able to cover your backs as you make a beeline for the deep black yonder

[ 08-21-2001: Message edited by: Caine ]

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Ok, guess I’ll take the lead since we’re on ground now.

Operation Golgotha T + 0 minutes 14 seconds

Earth, Mission Zone 13

Within the hills overlooking the beam in point.

It took a few seconds for the transporter beam to fully dissipate from view, and when the first few figures that appeared from within immediately took to the ground, Gunny Sgt. Diamond, formerly of the GCV-Chikuma knew that his crew had finally arrived.

For a few moments, he remained hidden in the loose brush, watching the mercs, Insurgents and fellow GalCom officers scatter from the beam in point and take relative cover amongst the debris strewn area, then moved further up to observe them closer.

Not too shabby. Better than what I expected, thought the old soldier. Still, lots of time left for screwups.

Through his nightvision rangefinder, he picked out a few better known personalities and began to make a quick assessment of their potential. One of the mercs, Nova as he recalled from the dossiers Neena had forwarded him seemed to know what he was doing. Maybe a little rough around the edges, but he had the raw potential that few are born with. He seemed keenly aware of his surroundings, knew how to best make use of the available terrain.

Think I just found my point man.

He searched again, spotted Savage leaning with his back against a boulder. He had a datapad in his hand, and was tapping into it while looking around at his people.

Ah, the good fleet commander. Been a while, sir.

It had been a while. Nearly three years in fact.

Diamond had briefly served on the Orion Station as a security consultant after he retired from active duty. He spent nearly a year there, getting both the security and marine compliment of the station up to scratch before heading off again with his commission and settling down on earth. He’d grown weary of the life of a warrior, and wanted to put down some roots before he got too old for it. He’d met a nice young woman, married and had a son since that time. He hadn’t been to any of the Chikuma crew reunions, nor replied to any but Neen Polovoskis mail. He just wanted things to be quiet, happy and safe.

When Savage contacted him, he knew it must have been important. By the time the fleet commander had explained his story, backed up by Rattler no less, he knew his brief stint as a quiet nobody was about to end.

Refusal wasn’t an option – Savage had made that very clear. It was, to coin a phrase, do or die time.

So he had accepted, although reluctantly. He had started to grow fond of his new life, and it would be difficult to leave it, even temporarily to go back to doing what he did best.


Diamond continued to observe, and catalogued a few potential disaster candidates. One of the mercs, although on the surface looking capable, seemed constantly distracted. A definite hazard. He then picked out team members from further back – recognized David Foss, the Insurgent Antilles and even –

Diamond blinked and rechecked the viewfinder.

Is that really Chavik?

This was unexpected. He hadn’t known about his involvement. It must have been a very recent development for him not to have been informed.

I wonder what surprises you have for us this day, Mr Chavik …

Despite the unexpected addition of this particular Insurgent, Diamond was still less than happy with what he saw. Sure, some were capable, in fact, overall it was a better turn out than he had expected, but his expectations had been low from the beginning, so even this nice little surprise didn’t lift his spirit, or raise his guesstimate as to their chances for success.

50/50 at best …. Dear god … it’s going to be messy.

Operation Golgotha T + 2 minutes 45seconds

Earth, Mission Zone 13

Beam in point.

Savage was busy with his datapad when Chavik pulled up to his side.

“We’re being watched. From the hills.” Said the Insurgent.

Savage didn’t even blink. “I know. It’s our contact.”

Chavik looked over his shoulder and quickly gestured for his team members to hit the dirt. “You sure about that?”

Savage nodded. “If it was anyone else out there, I think we’d be in deep shit by now.”

“We’re already in deep shit, commander. We’ve been in deep shit since day one.”

Savage looked up from his datapad and regarded Chavik. “You sound nervous, Mr Chavik. You feeling alright?”

The Insurgent had to admit, he wasn’t feeling as well as he ought to. It wasn’t the first time he had been in a combat situation, and he had never quite felt this way before. He looked at his hands, noticed them shaking.

“It’s probably due to the anti-tox you had … it will pass.”

Chavik frowned at him. “I’ve had anti-tox before. I’ve never reacted like this in my life.”

“Go see Foss. He’ll sort out those jitters of yours.”

“And what about our friend in the hills?”

Savage turned away from the Insurgent and resumed what he was doing. “He’ll be down soon enough. I think he’s picking out volunteers or something. Maybe making sure theres nobody else around to trouble us. In the mean time, get Foss to look at you then get your people prepped. We got a lot of ground to cover before hitting the barracks, and we got less than two hours to get there.”

Chavik nodded and took off low.

Savage sighed. He’s developing symptoms too quickly. Way too damned early. I just hope to hell everybody else is faring better than him.

Savage looked down at the spot where Foss had given him his ‘anti-tox’ injection, just minutes before, and prayed to god that they could all get back to the ship in time.


[ 08-26-2001: Message edited by: Charles Lindsey ]

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Ack, that god Foss was here to keep me updated...I hate full time jobs....*snuffle*


She hates me, he loves me... She looks to Rattler he loves me too...I'm so confused!

Akuma stood watching the screen her eyes fighting back tears and succeeding so far. She looked to Rattler then to Neena then to Blades....With one last look around she turns and walks off of the bridge. She found a quiet secluded spot in the hallway by a window.

Foss is Right, I've got to make a choice....But I can't shoot anyone...Not Rattler...Not him and Blades...So..So...I've chosen then.

She nodded to herself and went to her rooms to make preperations for her formal request. When I get back to Galcom HQ this will all be solved.



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