Fool Me Once
Posted By: Chuckles<firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 18 June 2004, 4:14 PM
As his warthog approached Blue Base, Chuckles could see Lexicus waiting out front with a rocket-launcher. The last few hours of darkness had been quiet, and Chuckles had taken the opportunity to do some scouting. Light had just began to show in the sky when he received a message from base: Lex needed to talk and it was urgent. The clown parked by the side entrance and walked to his old friend. Strangely, Lex's FOF tag (friend or foe) registered as unknown. He made a note to run a diagnostic later. His MJOLNIR suit had never malfunctioned before, but there was a first time for everything. Well, maybe not everything .
"Good to see you made it back alive" Lex said. "I suppose you know that we aren't supposed to go out alone before sunrise. It could be dangerous."
"Only for them, Lex." Chuckles began to take off his helmet, but stopped when he noticed Lexicus didn't follow suit. "You know, we could have talked through our com-link while I was out there. What's this about?"
"How long we been teammates Chuck? Long time, right?"
"Did you ever wonder what it would be like to face off against eachother?" Lex's tone was mostly humorous, but something about it worried Chuckles. He responded slowly. "Yup."
"Think about it: you have the ClownFence, I have the mass attack. What battles we could have!" Lex was silent for a moment, but Chuckles didn't notice. He was too busy thinking.
He instictively sensed danger. The clown didn't like how things were adding up. Lex had the wrong FOF tag, he would not remove his helmet, and he was carrying a rocket launcher. Oh no. Chuckles suddenly wished he had more than his pistol. Without Lex knowing, he adjusted the com settings, enabling the entire team to hear their conversation.
"You want to cut to the chase, Lex?"
He was silent for a moment and then said in a low voice, "For reasons that I want to keep to myself, I feel that I need to . . . I want to . . . I am switching to the RED TEAM."
Bojo stepped out of the base about twenty feet behind Lexicus. He carried a shotgun. Blade, a noobie, stepped out next to him. From the tunnel transition, a very surprised Krustyclown put the bead of his sniper-rifle on the back of Lex's head. Blondsniper did the same from the mouth of the tunnel. Chuckles didn't move a muscle.
"Congratulations Lex," the clown said with a voice colder than ice, "red is your color." His communications to Lexicus cut off as his FOF tag turned from UNKNOWN to FOE. "DROP HIM!" Chuckles yelled and jumped for the doorway.
Lex instantly fell to a crouch and fired a rocket towards Chuckles, sending him flying against the canyon wall. Sniper trails crisscrossed where his head had just been, and he saw his shields drop to half as a shotgun blast barely missed the kill-zone. He rolled towards the warthog, making Krusty miss as a high-powered round from Blondsniper slammed into his shoulder. The shrill sound of his shield alarm filled his helmet. A grenade bounced to a stop in front of him. A split-second before it went off he jumped and fired his RL in Bojos' direction. The combined explosions sent rock and dust through the air like a small tornado. Blue team strafed the clouded area and then all was silent.
Chuckles had suffered only the temporary loss of his shields. He stepped out of the right-hand side of the base. "Where's Lex?"
Blade, the noobie, smiled inside his helmet as he reported "Lexicus is dead!" Relieved, Chuckles began to walk towards the warthog. Seemingly from nowhere, a rocket screamed past and impacted the wall next to him. Chuckles flew twenty yards, stopping abruptly as he smacked into the boulder out front. He heard a warthog rumble past as desperate shots rang out. Then all was silent again.
Lex had betrayed them. Betrayed them to their faces and gotten away.
Chuckles stood and inspected the damage. On his left hand two fingers hung broken and limp. His right shoulder would barely respond and shrapnel was embedded the length of his right arm. He returned to the relative safety of the base to tend his wounds.
"Shouldn't we go after him?!" Bojo asked. The young clown was mad .
Chuckles was silent for a moment. "No" he said, as he cut a piece of shrapnel from his arm with his combat-knife. He nodded towards flag in the back of the base. "He'll come to us."
"Yeah, I guess you're right. Anything I can do for you?" Chuckles studied the edge of his knife for a moment and then nodded. "Bring me the noobie who said Lex was dead."