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Fan Fiction

Posted By: 4642 Elitist Bastard<4642eb@googlemail.com>
Date: 7 May 2009, 7:50 pm

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The battle was over, but the victors were still in pieces on the floor, waiting to be swept up.

Breaking into a light jog, the Master Chief ran to the opposite corner of the covered plaza. Plaster dusted the floor, and the remains of the shopping centre stood above him, gutted, but still standing firm.
He gently stepped over a fallen display, shattered glass and jewellery spread across the floor. It was pure fluke that no more than the two hundred had died. He stepped around a stall with no less than a dozen spiker rounds embedded in the organic display, which still feebly displayed the remains of its promotional urgings.
The Chief un-muted the emergency base COM channel.
'Base, this is bravo one.'
'Copy you, bravo one. What's up, Chief?'
'I'm near the east end of the mall, I can't see anyone - anything - else. I think I'll just finish this bit, then we'll close the site off.'
'I think that's a wise move. The Superintendent has registered some major structural damage to the east wing, so I'd move out of there ASAP.'
'Chief? Do you read me?'
'Yes... wait. I can hear something.'

Mona curled up further, and whimpered in a high-pitched tone as she heard the footfalls come closer and closer. She clutched her furry bunny tightly, and wished her mother was here to help her.
And then came the voice. Deep, loud, overlaid with static and interference. Terrifying to the mind of a six-year-old.
Mona said nothing.
'You've got to get out of here. The Covenant are gone, but the building looks like it's going to collapse.'
And then―
There was a massive rumbling as a huge pair of hands lifted away the fallen bookcase Mona had been hiding under. She squealed.
'Get away from me! You're a big scary alien, you're going to kill me! I want my mommy!'
The deep voice came again.
'I'm not an alien. I'm here to help you.'
'NO!' Mona screamed again, curling herself yet tighter.
Silence for a second.
Then, a deep intake of breath from the metal giant, and a quiet hiss. She saw the huge hands place something green, gold and shiny, but covered in red icky stuff down on the floor.
Mona looked up.
From the neck down, the giant remained the same, it was a robot. But at the top, poking out of the neck, a little face, pale, slim, with brown hair, stubble on the cheeks, sombre, shallow brown eyes, and a few scars here and there.
He spoke again, but this time, Mona felt less scared.
'I'm not an alien. I'm a human, like you.'
The man-robot-giant squatted down, bringing his face close to Mona's.
'How do I know you're not a vid? Or a lologram?' Mona blurted out, reverting subconsciously to the unintentional mispronunciations of her toddlerhood.
'I'm real.' The voice was gentler now, softer. 'I'm a real person.'
Gingerly, apprehensive of what would happen if he was a nasty robot or alien, Mona pushed her little hand out, and touched his face. He flinched a little bit, and his skin felt a bit weird: rough, scratchy because he'd forgotten to shave, dirty because he'd not showered, but very definitely human.
'See?' the man-giant-thing whispered, 'I'm a friend. We need to get out of here.'

Slowly, the little girl stood, clutching her soft toy - a crude but endearing likeness of a rabbit.
'Why do we need to get out of here?'
'The building is damaged. It might fall down on top of us.'
'My mummy says never to go off with strangers.'
'But that doesn't include when an alien blows up the shopping centre. We need to go and find your mother.'
The girl thought for a moment, and then spoke again, in the same high-pitched voice.
The Master Chief forced a little smile, and turned around.
'We need to go that way,' he announced, pointing with one hand as he picked up his helmet with the other.
'Why are you putting that hat on?' the little girl demanded, suddenly.
The Master Chief thought. How was he to phrase this so the girl could understand?
'It's so I can speak to my friends outside the mall.'
'Like my mummy's bobile?'
Bobile? Presumably a mispronunciation of mobile. Mobile phone? Probably.
'Yes. Like that. We need to hurry, we don't have much time.' The Master Chief locked the helmet back on to the suit.
'I'll race you,' the girl announced, getting ready to run.
'We don't have time for that,' the Chief said.
'Why not?'
'Because otherwise we'll still be here when the roof falls off.' He knelt on one knee, and looked through the faceplate into the little girl's eyes.
'I'll carry you... I can run faster.'
For someone who'd supposedly been warned of 'stranger danger', the girl offered surprisingly little resistance to the Spartan's commands. He gently lifted the little girl to his shoulder, and ran at a relatively slow speed.
There was an ominous crumbling as the Chief exited the mall, and slowly walked past the cordon, and the few hundred metres to the library, where the more minor injuries were being treated.

The battle was over, but the victors were still in pieces on the floor, waiting to be swept up.

The Master Chief's facial expression was one of minor annoyance as he saw the size of the queues of lost children. The girl was wandering about, shouting for her mother.
'You said you'd find my mummy!' the little girl protested.
The Chief looked down at her, and frowned.
'We will find your mummy. We just need to be patient.'
The girl wasn't going to wait, so the Master Chief led her over to a quiet corner and sat down against the wall.
'My name's Spa― John.' He mentally corrected himself. 'What's your name?'
'I'm Mona!' the girl said, proudly. That information wasn't much use. Was the girl likely to know what a surname was? Probably not.
'I have another name,' the Master Chief ventured, 'do you have another name?'
He wasn't sure where the words had come from. They had tumbled out subconsciously, without much thought. It seemed to work, though.
'My mummy sometimes calls me Mona Greenwood.'
'Yeah. Now where is she?'
The Chief started slightly as a woman shot past, and swept the girl into her arms.
'I thought I'd lost you, darling...'
The Master Chief stood up, and turned away.
To be met by a woman's hand on his chest, strangely tangible through the layers of the armour.
'Was it you who found her?'
The Master Chief felt a rare blush flood his face with unwanted blood and heat.
'Yes,' he mumbled, sheepishly.
'Thank you so much... you're my hero,' the woman gushed, flinging her arms around the Spartan.
'I was only doing my job, ma'am.'
'I don't care... thank you so much...' the woman loosened her grip, tears welling up in her eyes, and swallowed, 'I was so worried for her. She's our youngest, she's my only child... her father's in intensive care. I didn't want to lose her.'
Mona's attention had been distracted by something, and she was bellowing at her mother to follow her. The mother cast a huge smile of gratitude towards the Master Chief, and wandered away.

The battle was over, and the victims were now beginning to sweep themselves up and reassemble.

Destiny wiped the tears from her eyes once more as she picked up her little girl and kissed her on the cheeks.
'Come on. Let's go and find daddy.'
'Is daddy OK?'
'Yes, he's just a bit hurt. He's in hospital, he's going to be fine.'
'Did you get hurt, mummy?'
'No, I was fine.'
Destiny cradled Mona in her arms as she walked out on to the street, and across the car park. The shopping mall was still creaking ominously under its own weight, and a cordon had been very firmly established about the building.
'Let's get something to drink on our way,' Destiny whispered into Mona's ear, turning into a side-street and finding a food dispenser.
Card in. Nine-six-nine-four. Voice and fingerprint authentication. Done. She proffered the freshly-bottled water to her daughter as she took a baguette and Coke, and withdrew her card.
Destiny turned around, and saw the man who'd rescued Mona, sat against the wall, staring at the ground, helmet at his side. She silently smiled at him, and waved. As she started back towards the main road, Destiny Carter had the privilege of seeing something that no living man had ever seen.

The battle was over and the wounds were healed, but the janitor lay on the field, wrecked by the fatigue.

Silently, with dignity, and without any fuss, the Master Chief began to cry.