Derailed Part 2
Posted By: Dispraiser<firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 28 August 2003, 5:36 PM
I slid the pistol from the holster on my leg and flipped so that I was right side up. I peered into the train to see shocked passengers looking backwards at me. I waved the pistol in front of the window to order them to get out of the way. I raised the pistol and fired three shots through the window before smashing through it. I rolled to a stop inside the train and looked up at the passengers. Each one of them stared at me with an equal look of shock. I looked down at my bloodstained shirt as a clump of important looking papers flew out the hole in the back of the train. "What?"
I ran through the train to get to the initial drop zone. The train was quite long, so it took me some time to get to the middle of it. I could hear the panicked voices of the passengers as they remarked the explosions, gunfire and an armed man covered in cuts running through the train. Some shouted about Matheans (Racist for West Lunar 4 People) coming to invade, others about the Covenant, most shouting about terrorists. It was ironic that no one knew what I was doing though they were probably less than three days from death. Suddenly a familiar hum appeared. I looked out the window to the right to see a Covenant dropship hovering alongside the train. The portentous Purple monster hovered slightly outside the train and seemed to glare in at the passenger as it passed, no doubt heading for the forward controls of the train to derail it.
I ran around the next bend in the train and dropped to my knees. I noticed that the air crackled and that the passengers in this car were all dead. I thought I smelled the familiar stench of an Elite or a Jackal. Either way, it didn't matter, it meant that they were on the train. I peered around the corner to see an Elite. An impressive eight feet tall, the blue warrior stumbled drunkenly down the hallway. I guessed that it wasn't too used to being on a train. As it drew closer I ducked behind a row of seats. The Elite continued to pace down the hallway until it passed my position. I stood as it passed and prepared to slit its throat.
Suddenly gunfire echoed down the train. The Elite spun to see who was firing only to find that I was standing but two feet from it with a knife drawn. "Shit..." I muttered. The Elite reached for its rifle as I lunged at it with the combat knife, stabbing the Elite in the arm and twisting the knife, the tip shattering in the Elite's dominant arm. As he flung his other arm to grab the rifle I reached for mine. The Elite placed his hand on the rifle and raised it to kill me as a half dozen rounds hit him in the chest, knocking him off his feet and into the connecting car between the car I was in and the next car in the train. I ran at him, my rifle in hand and looked down, aiming for the Elite's face. It stared up at me as it kicked my legs, knocking me to the ground. I fired erroneously as I fell, the bullets merely hitting the ceiling. The Elite stumbled to stand with one arm as I jumped to my feet again and raised the rifle to finish it. The Elite was too fast though, and it grabbed my rifle, hurling it down the train. Before I could react to it grabbing my rifle its hand was placed firmly around my neck, preparing to choke the life from me.
The Elite picked me up as I kicked it in the chin. It stumbled backwards as I fell to the ground heavily. I quickly rose to my feet, crimson blood dripping from my mouth, and grabbed the small wood broom from the wall of the train. I spun the pole as I walked at the Elite. He looked up at me and matched my challenge, raising his good arm to fight me. He drew first, lunging at me. His attack was easily defeated, I quickly sidestepped and brought the broom's end crashing upon the back of his head. The Elite lie one the ground, a shattered half of the broom crashing to the ground beside him. I raised the sharpened stake-like half of the broom and stabbed the Elite in the heart as he lie. A sudden convulsion was his last move.
I turned and continued to run down the train, grabbing my rifle from the cold linoleum floor. As I ran down the train a wave of darkness crossed my soul and the train, which began to pass through a long tunnel. The flashlight on the front of my battle rifle automatically turned on in the low light setting, and lit my way to my allies. As I ran into the next car I found an Elite pacing away from me, firing at the junction between the two cars, one of which clearly contained my fellow ODSTs. I noticed that the Elite was standing in a pool of purple blood, the bodies of two other Elites lie motionless on the ground. I raised the battle rifle and fired a full thirty round magazine into the back of the Elite, which died before it could turn around to see its assailant. I was lucky that I didn't have a problem shooting savage monsters in the back. I pulled my sidearm from its holster and aimed it at the ground, firing a single shot into the Elite's head to make sure it was dead. I ran down the train to meet the rest of my squad.
"Dead man walking..." the slow, deep voice of Samuels echoed through his dirt mottled helmet.
"If I've lived this far I don't think death has any grip on me." I said, "But the lord knows that with his every motion they will try to strike me down. But when he does, I assure you of one thing. I'll be going feet first into hell."
"No kidding. Here's the situation." Mitchels said with his stereotypical New Yorker accent, "We finished mopping up the last of the boarding crew as far as we can tell, and so long as we are in this tunnel, we're safe from reinforcements coming." The train was suddenly flooded with light as we left the tunnel.
"GET READY!!! I want everyone scattered across the top of the train, RPGs in the middle! Knock down the fliers, and don't let anything on the train! Order civilians to the front of the train!" I shouted. Samuels ran for the car junction and pulled his knife from its holster. He cut a large slot in the side of the rubber train connection and pulled himself through it. I followed him, Mitchels sliding through moments after me. I looked out of the train to view a very impressive landscape, the Chinook powered deserts of Lunar 4. The nearby mountains forced all of the air to loose all of its moisture as it rose over the mountains, and the resulting desert was among the most scenic places in the outer colonies realm. A pack of Rahnok (8 ft tall flightless birds of Lunar 4) ran peacefully in the distance. A blue line in the distant skies suddenly reminded me of the peril we faced.
I clamored along the side of the train, continuing till Samuels found a ladder to the top. I climbed to the top of the train and ran down its length once again. Behind me Samuels helped Mitchels up, who began to unpack his RPG launcher. The train suddenly trembled, and I was thrown to the ground, a green flash from the front of the train signaling the first of the Banshees. I raised the battle rifle's scope to my cheek and watched the Banshee swoop proudly along the train's length. The graceful beast soon met its end, I fired a burst of shots at one of its poorly defended stabilizers. The Banshee spiraled out of control into a telephone line beside the train, the explosion whirring by me as the train continued its death-marked passage. I rolled onto my stomach and watched as a dropship tried to land on the back of the train. A missile struck it like a bolt of lightning, aided by the train's inherent speed boost, and drove it backwards into a fireball. Bodies and shrapnel flew from the explosion as it settled into the distance.
Another set of Banshees descended as I began to run the length of the train again. One lowered itself to an altitude just above the train, and ran along it firing plasma bolts into the serpent. Metal vaporized as plasma struck cold steel as the bolts battered the top of the train. They traced a path towards me, and I began to run, fleeing the bolts, knowing that there was no escape. Behind me plasma struck closer with each passing moment. My savior came this time in the form of a missile. The bolt converted the portentous purple Banshee into a glowing fireball. The center of the Banshee exploded instantly, and the rest of it was no different, pieces of it striking along the walls of the valley we moved along. The main portion of the carcass struck the train, bouncing from it roof twice before shattering to the sides of the train. The second Banshee circled high above me, diving suddenly. The descending Banshee was suddenly intercepted by twin trails of tracer fire. Just as I began to question the source a trio of Longswords descended from the clouds above. I cheered in excitement, with their help the train would be safe! The mission was a success...