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Heroic Last Stand - Evac (Part 2)
Posted By: HairyGoggles<hairy.goggles@hotmail.co.uk>
Date: 22 March 2011, 12:23 pm

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Sand and dust swirled around the SPARTAN team along with the red smoke from their marker and as the dropship thumped down onto the ground, the back door opened allowing the team to enter. Adam nodded at Kaitlin and Meghan, indicating they were first to get on, before Stewart and Holly turned to join their comrades onboard the Pelican. Just as Stewart put his foot onto the plating of the ramp, a sudden flash of bright light from a Covenant sniper flashed through the dust and struck Holly square in the top side of her helm, causing her to spin and land in a heap on the ground. With a sudden flash of movement and a barking order from Adam to get the Pelican's engines at full power, the two male members of Team Trident grabbed Holly and dragged her and her sniper rifle into the Pelican. Adam inspected his HUD's data, Holly's bio signs indicator a flash of orange, the sniper's light blue Recon helmet had a deep black gouge on her left side, it didn't look promising for her. Stewart knelt down and began to pull the helmet off before a hand snapped up and grabbed his, Holly's grip was firm, yet soft and she said with a huffed voice of frustration, "I can get onto a Pelican on my own you know boys!" and with that she took of her helm, revealing her bright green eyes and short blonde hair. The burning gouge had penetrated through her Recon helmet completely and left a sizeable burn line across the side of her head, starting from her ear and finishing at her crown. The smell of burnt hair was noticeable to Holly as the entire team sighed in relief, Adam commenting as he stood up, "You don't get taken out that easily do you Holly?"
Holly simply grinned mischievously and answered, "No sir! Takes more than an off target sniper to take this Spartan out!"
With that, Holly stood up, gathering her wrecked helmet and her sniper rifle before sitting down by Meghan as the orange and black armoured Spartan sat with her, lightly slugging her shoulder, "Can't have this team lose it's female superiority can we?"
The team laughed as they strapped into the bucket seats.

The military green dropship's engines thrummed and whined entering full power, the land outside suddenly was pulled away, the Pelican soaring back into the sky. The rest of Team Trident took their helmets off and looked at each other with their eyes for the first time in hours before looking outside again at the planet Novus III, thick black smoke was everywhere, billowing out from settlements and battlefields. In the distance though, a worse sight was visible, a bright column of almost blinding light was moving over the planet's surface, slowly turning it to glass. The Covenant was systematically purging all traces of humanity from the planet. As they did to all planets they encountered humans on. Harvest, Bliss, Kholo to name but a few and now Novus III would join that roster of the dead. The near death incident Holly had just experienced was instantly forgotten by the entire team as they saw the merciless destruction and it sent them into silence. It left a bitter taste in Stewart's mouth as he watched, his normally warm deep green eyes looked cold as he watched before the backdoor closed and sealed completely. A sudden rush of g-forces indicated the team were entering orbit, heading back on board the Frigate class ship Pureheart. Then they would leave, regroup and find another battle to attend. Adam looked over his team and at their stony expressions after seeing the glassing taking place, tapping some data into his TACPAD, he said, "This wasn't a loss team."
Kaitlin looked at him, her eyes were still aflame from the battle, "It sure looks like it though…"
Adam frowned, rubbing the black stubble on his chin. "We managed to evac 50 million citizens in three days. I'd say that's a victory to humanity."
Stewart and Holly both nodded, with Stew smiling a little, thinking of their fellow Spartan, the Master Chief. He never knew of the concept of losing. Everything was a win with him, not because he was delusional, but because he was too damn good! The team then returned to silence, unsure of what to say next, Holly inspected her sniper rifle, rubbing a scuff on the housing to help to try and ignore the thumping headache and searing pain she received from the sniper shot, whilst Meghan looked into her reflection on the silver visor her Air Assault helmet, but clearly her mind was elsewhere.

Flight Sergeant Danielle Cookson, the pilot of the craft frowned her smooth, rounded face, she rubbed her itchy chin as the uncomfortable silenced returned to the Pelican as it continued to rocket towards the Pureheart. Her heart was still pounding in her ears form the sudden surprise sniper shot that had caught one of the Spartans off guard, but it was slowly quietening. Bringing her hand back down to the controls, Cookson flicked open the comm. to the Spartans and asked with a slightly nervous voice, "Ermm Trident Leader, you helped to save a few squads of Marines from Charlie Company down there didn't you?"
Trident's leader blinked at the strange question before he nodded a little where he sat, despite the pilot not being able to see him. Answering with a slightly curious voice, the Adam answered, "Yeah we did Gauntlet, down in Crescent Gorge on the western side of New Auckland."
Flight Sergeant Cookson smiled a little and replied, "Well then I want to thank you and your team personally, you helped to save my husband's squad from annihilation had you not cleared those dropships. I owe you one!"
The team all visibly smiled a little, getting that personal touch of thanks was something Spartans rarely received as they were held in secrecy and only received thanks from the top brass when they pinned on their medals. It cleared the air of the mild depression that lurked in the Pelican earlier and it almost completely healed Holly's headache into becoming a mild twinge. Putting his Scout helmet back on, Stewart said to Cookson, "Don't worry about it Gauntlet, it's our job. I'm sure you'll pay us back with another lift at some point."
Flight Sergeant Cookson's smile widened as she banked the Pelican lightly to turn towards the loading bay of the Pureheart. Activating the retro thrusters to slow the craft down, she announced, "Approaching the loading bay now, touch down in one minute."
The team nodded from where they sat and put on their helmets and picked up their weapons. The Captain would be waiting for debrief in his quarters once the ship slipspaced out on a random vector, as per the Cole Protocol.