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An Unggoy Life: Chapter 32: Forerunner Moonbase
Posted By: CrazyGrunt<thomas-hoskins@comcast.net>
Date: 23 October 2005, 5:48 pm

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The Moon, Forerunner installation

      Miranda stepped off the Pelican on to the metallic floor of the Foreruner hangar after the blast doors closed. The hangar interior looked exactly like the inside of the wall around the Library, only larger. She clicked off the safety on the shotgun Johnson had given her. The rest of the bridge crew, which consisted of four Unggoy, two Humans, and one Sangheili, were armed with an assortment of Plasma Rifles and SMGs. Sergeant Johnson had a Shotgun and a Sniper Rifle, and the squad of Marines were armed with Shotguns and Battle rifles, with the exception of a few specialists Marines who were armed with Rocket Lauchers and Magnums. The Arbiter was armed with an Energy sword and what seemed to be his favorite human weapon, a Shotgun.
      Miranda watched as a Gauss Warthog hit the floor, followed by 5th platoon. The Master Chief followed them, trailed by the most annoying machine in the galaxy, Guilty Spark.
      "Aw, Chief, why'd you bring Mr. Lightbulb along?" Johnson called, clearly annoyed about the matter of having Guilty Spark with them.
      "He claims that he can lead us through the facility." The Master Chief answered.
      The Phantom dropped off the Imperial Unggoy Protectors and accelerated out of the hangar just before the doors closed.
      "We'd better get moving." Miranda said as she handed Cortana to the Master Chief.
      "Follow me, if you please." Guilty Spark said. The group headed toward the doorway that led into the complex. He accessed the terminal, muttering, "That's odd…"
      Suddenly, a burst of light erupted from the terminal and engulfed Guilty Spark. The Monitor fell to the ground, its light gone. The door stayed locked.
      "Strange," Cortana muttered. "Chief, insert me into Guilty Spark's mainframe."
      The Chief nodded, and removed her from his neural lace, and inserted Cortana into the Monitor's body, and stepped back.
      A human-size hologram of Cortana appeared above the Monitor. She unlocked the door, and began to lead the Master Chief and the rest of the group in to the structure.

      The Orks made their own hangar five minutes later. The Assault boat's door opened, and Grievous walked out first. He was followed by the Ork Warlords, who didn't care what the installation was unless it was a weapon. Grievous motioned for them to follow him as he led them into the structure.

      The Flood entered the complex last. Using his teleportation ability, Gravemind teleported a swarm of Juggernauts inside of the hangar that the UWSC forces had landed in. The Pelicans were overwhelmed in a matter of seconds by the Juggernauts, and the swarm continued into the base.
      On the other side of the base, Gravemind teleported a swarm of Flood Combat Forms to deal with the Sentinels.

      "We've got lots of Sentinel activity up ahead," Thomas reported over the Comm as he reconnoitered the hallway ahead of them. The architecture resembled the hallways on Halo 004, according to Cortana. "There are ten Enforcers coming towards us. Everybody hide!"
      There's no place to hide." The Master Chief reminded them.
      The group readied for a firefight as the Enforcers hovered around the corner. The first Enforcer halted, and a pale-blue beam of light shot out of it's optical sensor, covering the entire group. The light returned to the Enforcer, and it continued past them.
      After the column of Enforcers had left, Thomas whispered, "That was odd."
      "Let's go," Cortana suggested. They continued onward.

      Grievous raised his hand in a 'stop' motion to the Orks, and stepped into a chamber they walked into. The room was circular, the walls a dark gray color, with a Sentinel portal every meter or so. Grievous stepped into the center of the room, where he could see the other seven corridors that he hadn't explored yet.
      Suddenly, an unearthly screech reverberated from the corridor ahead of Grievous. Ghazghkull knew what they were, and thought, Finally, a worthy opponent.
      The Flood ramapaging down the hallway toward the room. The Ork Warlords raised their weapons, but Grievous called them off. He raised his right hand, palm out, at the oncoming wall of rotting flesh. A beam of light erupted from the ring and filled the hallway. The unholy screams of the Flood escalated in key, and in a split-second, the entire swarm was vaporized.
Grievous motioned for them to continue, and they kept moving.

      Nugga turned at the sound of heavy footsteps as the group moved further inside the base. He glanced around the corner, but nothing was there.
      "I think we're being followed." Nugga said to Lovu. She nodded in agreement.
      "You're just being paranoid," One of the Marines in front of them said in an optimistic tone, "This place has been deserted for billions of years. There's nothing to fear around-"
      Suddenly, a Flood Juggernaut burst through the floor in front of the Marine, grabbed him by the waist, and pulled him through the floor. Three Marines fired their Battle Rifles in vain into the hole the Juggernaut had dragged the unforunate Marine through. Nugga ignited his Energy Sword in case there were more Flood nearby.
      The Juggernaut seemed to be a combination of multiple host parts, which varied from the legs of a Sangheili to the shield arm of a Lekgolo.
      "We have to keep moving," Cortana said with urgency, "There are more Juggernauts in this passage. They will tear us apart if we stay in one spot."
      Miranda nodded, and shouted, "Move it people! Out of the hallway!"
      Nugga leaped over the hole, his comrades close behind. The four of them sprinted toward the next room with a speed unusual for an Unggoy. The squad of Marines were not so lucky.
      One of the Marines was grabbed by a Juggernaut that had burst through the right side of the cramped hallway. He fired two Shotgun shells at point-blank range at the Juggernaut's mass of sensory appendages that protruded from what had been a Jiralhanae's chest. The Juggernaut slammed it's right arm into the head of the Marine, the Lekgolo shield that had been fused to the Juggernaut's flesh smashing the human's skull. Nugga saw a incubation sac pop on the Juggernaut's right arm, and an Infection Form crawl out and begin infecting the dead Marine. Another Marine was crushed by the Juggernaut's right arm as it pulled the dead Marine through the hole. The two specialist Marines were snatched up by a Juggernaut that had dropped down from the ceiling. They didn't stand a chance. Nugga could hear them screaming as the Juggernaut leapt through a hole in the ceiling, dragging the Marines with them.
      Johnson shoved his Shotgun into the rotting flesh on a Juggernaut's 'head' as it smashed through the floor and attempted to grab him. The Shotgun shell blasted the Juggernaut's 'head' apart with a loud POP! The dead Flood form tilted backwards and fell through the hole it had created. Johnson watched as Miranda and the bridge crew made it past the defensive line of Unggoy led by the Master Chief, who were blasting the Juggernauts as they came into range.
      "ODSTs!" Johnson barked, "We are out of here!"
      The ODSTs ran ahead of Johnson, keeping the Juggernauts busy dodging bullets while gradually retreating toward the battle line.
      As Johnson reached the battle line, a Helljumper tossed a frag into the hallway. The grenade exploded, and the hallway was filled with Flood guts.
      "Keep moving," Cortana said in an urgent tone, "That frag will only slow them down."

      As Grievous walked down hallway where the Flood had come from, Ghazghkull turned to the other Warlords. "I think Grievous has been in charge of this operation too long," He whispered. A nod from the rest of the Warlords confirmed their agreement in this opinion.
      "Then he will have to be removed," Ghazghkull continued, "I will be the leader after that. Understood?" Again, the Warlords nodded in agreement.
      "Follow me," Grievous said as he came back from the hallway, "I believe I have found the control room."

      Nugga gasped as the group walked into the control room. It was huge. The center of the room was only accessible by a large, x-shaped walkway that connected all four of the entrances to the center. Below them, the room dropped down three hundred feet before it reach the floor, and it was the same case for the ceiling. Instead of the usual Forerunner décor, the room was a bright shade of yellow that caused Nugga to turn away from the fear of becoming blind. Forty Sentinel portals were scattered across the walls at random. The central hub of the control room was fifty yards away from them, so it was easy enough to reach. The problem was what had just come out from the hallway to the right and left of them, and who had just appeared in the hallway on the other side of the central hub.
      Grievous stood, staring back at them while the Ork Warlords came out behind him.
      The Flood came pouring out from the hallways in every form possible.
      Then all hell broke loose.