Squad47 Part 5
Posted By: Spartan 006<firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 8 November 2006, 8:11 pm
Squad 47 had been driving for the past thirty-six hours across the plains of Banfador on Theta Omacron since they had left the Spartan Training Facility, S.o.T.o.F.. The sun was already peaking over the planets horizon, and in the distance the UNSC controlled town of Little Hector burned in the morning's glare. Jude accelerated as it became apparent of what had happened; the poorly prepared and horribly ill-effective makeshift wooden wall was now only burning ash on the rolling hillsides. All the buildings had been almost completely destroyed except for a weapons cache that was basically a hole covered up with two-by-fours, and a few buildings, but the worst part of it all was the tens of hundreds of dead bodies that were lying in the streets rotting, decaying, almost as though they had been dead for a week. The fact that the wall still burned showed that it couldn't have been more than four hours ago.
"Do you think we should check for any survivors?" asked Jude as he drove slowly through the city's streets. The squad was speechless, they had seen some very gruesome combat scenes where limbs had been ripped off, heads had been dismembered, and bodies diemboweled, but this was beyond all of that combined and made ten times worse. It was as though the Covenant had made sure that the city's inhabitants would have a slow unpleasant death.
William was the first one to speak since entering the city, "Jude, I don't think that there are any survivors. We should load up as many weapons as we can, and get out of this place as soon as possible." Jude just nodded as he backed the Warthog up to the weapon cache's door. William, Allicia, and Camden hopped out of the Warthog and went to open the trapdoor. They thought that they had already seen the worst of it, but they were about to discover how wrong they were.
"Jude!" said Allicia as she ran up next to the driver's side, "Get over here quick. We've got some dying marines in here." Jude jumped out of the Warthog without even taking the time to turn it off. As they stared into the cavernous hole they could see marines that had been cut around their abdomen, letting their innards hang out while they lay there in agony with their weapons just out of reach for them to end their agony. Others had their limbs cut off and were bleeding to death while their dead companions lay in silent consent that they would soon join them.
"William, turn the Warthog around. We will use the winch to lower me down there so that I can pull them out. Allicia, the weapons that are in the rear of the Warthog need to moved to make room for the marines, we may need to perform some minor medical procedures here. Camden, use the radio to call the nearest base, and get us some Pelicans down here A.S.A.P.." The Spartans all jumped to there duties, but they knew that it was probably to late for most of the marines.
"Hey! Are you guys okay down there?" yelled Jude down into the pit, afterwards thinking how stupid a question it was.
"Hanley! Hanley, the rescue team has arrived!" said one of the marines who's eyes had been tore from their sockets. " he felt around for his friend only to find a decapitated body laying beside him. "Crap!" he said jerking away from the body, "I hope that's not you, Hanley."
"Is this all of the survivors?" Jude yelled again, but the marine didn't answer. He turned around to see if William had the winch fixed yet. "William, I going on down. I'm going to check to see how many survivors there are. Just lower the winch down to me when you get it ready." William nodded and continued to attach the winch. As Jude slid down the side of the pit he landed in a pile of bodies that reached all the way to his knee. He turned on his light to see that he was standing in a mass grave. He looked to his left and saw the marine that he had been communicating with earlier. He waded through the bodies of other marines, some dead, and some who weren't dead but wished they were.
The blind marine could hear Jude as he came towards him. He went into a panic and tried to climb out of the pit. His actions grew more frantic as Jude came closer, "Don't come near me you hear! Don't come near me! I saw what you did to the guys on WhiteCaps! Get away! Get away!"
Jude was puzzled at this, "Where is WhiteCaps?", but the marine would only answer in a fearful manner, and any information that he gave was unintelligible. As he tried to figure out a way to calm him down, something hit him in the head. He looked up to see the winch cable dangling a few inches above him. "William," he said loudly, "is Camden up there?"
William looked behind him, "Yeah, he almost done with the transmission."
"Tell him to see if there is a place called Whitecaps anywhere near here." William walked over to Camden ,and relayed the orders to him. Now all we need to do is get as many of these men out of here as possible while we wait for the medical team to arrive.
After around three minutes of extracting injured marines out of the pit, Camden came over to Jude who was coming out of the pit. "If I am correct, WhiteCaps is the nearby mountain range which has snow all year at its peaks, thus the name WhiteCaps."
Jude handed a marine to William before answering, "Camden, I want you and Allicia to go there and look for a base, camp, or something of that sort. One of the marines kept babbling about something that the Covenant did there. Also, did you get an ETA on the medical team?"
"Yes, they should be here in about two hours to two and a half." Camden walked back to the radio which was sitting beside the Warthog and turned it off. "Allicia," he said looking around to see where she was at, "where are you at?"
"I'm here," came a voice from the other side of the Warthog. Camden walked around the Warthog to find Allicia bandaging up one of the marines. She had taken her helmet off and revealed her chestnut colored hair came down to just past her ears. She brushed it back behind her ear as it dangled in front of her face. Camden grabbed her helmet which had been sitting next to the Warthog and handed it to her. "Jude wants us to go up on the mountain and look for an outpost that is supposedly up there."
Allicia looked down at the injured marine as she got up. "Well, I hope he's got someone to bandage these guys up," she said slinging her Assualt Rifle over her shoulder, "come on, let's go." she started to walk away, but then stopped and asked Camden, "Wait a minute, what are we supposed to get there?"
Camden paused and thought about it. Their vehicle did seem to be the only one in the city. "I think I might have seen a garage on the southeast entrance to town. It's on the way so we may as well go and check it out." Allicia nodded in consent. It was around a fifteen minute walk to the southeast entrance, and when they finally arrived they were happy to see that there was a treaded Warthog, being an experimental version only a few hundred were made. Camden checked the gas tank and found it to be full and then jumped into the drivers seat.
Allicia walked around and sat down in the passenger seat. "Have you driven one of these before?" she asked.
"No," he answered as he switched on the ignition, "but I did drive the Scorpions some back at my training station. From the looks of things the handling shouldn't be much different." He gave it some gas, and the Warthog lumbered out of the garage. Camden put the pedal to the floor only to discover that the top speed of the vehicle was around that of a Scorpion tank. The Warthog began to show its useful qualities as it entered the snowier regions of the WhiteCaps. The scene of snow covering the landscape was extremely beautiful, however, the silence that resided there showed that there was still a menacing presence on the mountain. After driving along the wooded area of the mountain for about the span of half an hour, Camden and Allicia came to a concrete bunker, which was an odity seeing as most of the UNSC bunkers were made from steel or titanium. Camden turned the engine off, "Do you think we should check it out?" he asked Allicia who had already gotten out of the 'Hog and started towards the structure.
"Why not," she answered waving her MA5B assault rifle towards the bunker, "even if there aren't any Marines in there maybe there are some answers as to what happened." Camden agreed as he grabbed his Battle Rifle and followed Allicia inside. They quietly moved through the structure checking each room as they went, unfortunately, all that they found was the same thing that they had found down in Little Hector. As they moved past a door labeled Heating Allicia suddenly signaled for Camden stop.
"What is it?" he asked over the comm. so as not to alert whatever Allicia had heard. She signaled for him to listen for a sound that was apparently inside the heating room. He listened for awhile , but heard nothing. He was about to make a joke about Allicia's equipment malfunctioning, but then he heard it. A cough was coming from the heating room. He gave her a thumbs up as he put his hand on the door handle. As he turned the handle, a sniper rifle bullet came crashing through the door, hitting him in the arm. He rolled out away from the door as his shield burst. "I think they may know we're here." he said sarcastically.
"As soon as you're shields recharge come on in, I'm going through." Camden started to protest, but she had already gone in. He was about to rush on in and give her some support, but before he heard her say from inside the room, "Never mind, Camden, come on in." He walked in wondering what was going on. Standing next to Allicia was a man who stood about five feet tall in a heavy coat, a toboggan, and a piece of cloth covering his mouth and nose.
"So," said Allicia swinging her rifle over her shoulder, "who are you, and how come you're not dead like the rest of your friends here."
"I am Daniel Blanc, I was out on recon when I was given a message over my comm. to alert Little Hector of an attack. I was on my way down the mountain when I noticed at least a dozen or more Phantoms flying past me. I knew that I would never be able to get there in time to warn them so I stopped here to radio them, but by the time I got here the Covenant had already killed everyone and destroyed the radio equipment. I headed back into the forest and waited for the Covenant to leave. I came back after I saw the Capital ship leave. I've been searching for survivors, but I hadn't had any luck until I found you two. Have any of you two fou-" he stopped mid sentence and ran to a window that was to his left.
"What is it?" asked Camden as he walked towards the window. He looked out the window to see a large wolf-like animal with brown scraggily fur.
"Those scum are Ikariards, but we call 'em Ikies for short. They've been plaguing our men since we set up base here. We don't have any proof, but some of our superiors believe that ONI has been using these forests for testing." They watched as it started to chew on the Warthog's treads. "Is that what you came up in?" Daniel asked pointing at the Warthog.
"Yes," replied Camden as he backed towards the door, "but if we don't hurry up there may not be much of it left to get back in." Camden went to the door, yet as he reached for the door a large Ikariad burst through, shoving him up against the wall with its massive jaws. It wrapped its mouth completely around Camden's abdomen, his shields began to fall rapidly.
"Stick to wall!" said Allicia as she began firing her Assault Rifle at the creatures side. It yelped in pain as it jumped back towards the door. Daniel raised his Sniper Rifle and fired a round into the animal's skull, it fell dead to the floor releasing Camden, who's shields were just about out.
"We have to leave now, there are about five more of them inside the bunker." said Daniel as he started for the door. Allicia was about to inquire how he knew that there were more of them in the building, but Camden stopped her by putting his hand on her shoulder and nodding to move on. They made their way through the corridors without seeing any more Ikariads, but as they exited the building Daniel seemed overly nervous. "They're coming down from their nests up higher in the mountain. Hurry up and hop in the 'Hog, we have to get out of here now."
"I'll drive," said Camden moving towards the Warthog, "you and Allicia get in the back and watch for those things."
"I don't think so," said Daniel as he jumped into the Warthog's driver seat before Camden, "I know this mountain far better than both of you, thus, I'll be the one to drive." Camden and Allicia pondered this for a moment and decided that he was probably right. Daniel spend down the mountain like a mad man, dodging trees, boulders, and other wildlife. The Spartans were now wondering if letting him drive was such a good idea. They were about half way down the mountain when a Ikariad launched itself out of the forest and into the side of the vehicle, but it was quickly sucked into the treads.
"Allicia," said Camden as he caught himself from falling out of the Warthog, "call Jude and William over the comm. and tell them that we may be bringing along a few extra friends." Camden watched a pack of the Ikariad rushed down the hill after them, and they were gaining ground. The Warthog came bursting through the tree line outside of Little Hector. Daniel pushed the Warthog's engine as fast as it would go. As they passed the gate to the town Camden and Allicia looked behind them to see Jude and William lying in wait behind the left side of the gate. The Ikies ran past them and were speedily gunned down from behind by Jude and William. The Spartans in the Warthog jumped out as Daniel continued to drive through the city's streets, shooting at the Ikariads as they charged them. In the span of around ten seconds all of the creatures were lying dead in the streets.
"Now Camden," Jude said as he kicked one of the beasts to make sure it was dead, "did they not teach you in your sector not to bring home stray animals." William chuckled at the remark. "So who was the guy in the 'Hog?"
"He said his name was Daniel Blanc," replied Allicia, "maybe we can learn more about him when the medical team gets here."