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Chapter One- Sneak Attack: Part I
Posted By: Firestorm
Date: 28 February 2005, 3:11 AM

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2100 hours, January 17, 2553 (Military Calendar)
Liberty Island, New York City
Planet Earth, Milkyway System

      The entire harbor around Ellis and Liberty Islands crawled with security as people were gathering for the opening ceremonies of the military ball to be held on Ellis Island.
      The night was lit with spotlights, and the water was dotted with police boats. Underwater sensors guarded the islands, and three different security satellites provided constant surveillance of the entire area. Some of the U.N.S.C. Marines were responsible for all the proceedings security. As far as they were all concerned, not even a fly could get in without them knowing about it.
      Liberty Island ground security had been given over to over almost fifty of New York's finest, patrolling on a constant basis. The U.N.S.C. Marines had command posts set up on the side of Liberty Island that faced Ellis Island, where the opening ceremonies would take place.
      The line of vehicles jammed the one road to Ellis Island like a traffic jam at rush hour. The backup, of course, was caused by the intense security check each car had to go through just to get to the island.
      With all of the security no one would have expected for anyone to get through. Especially the Covenant.
      On the dock side of Liberty Island, away from Ellis Island, a New York cop named Stan walked a set path. He was in his thirties, and was pretty much disgusted at he night duty he'd been forced to pull. He would much rather have been home watching a game on television, or sitting at Harvey's tavern, downing a few beers. Instead he walked a very short, very boring beat of less than a hundred paces on Liberty Island.
      Stan was snapped out of his daydream by a low whining sound. He looked around for where it was coming from. He was so focused on his cold hands that he didn't see the dark shape hovering above him, didn't hear the release of the drop pods, didn't even know what hit him when a drop pod crushed him flat, killing him instantly.
      Another cop named Frank, on the next beat over, saw the pods as they came down. He dove into a bush to keep from being spotted. He watched as a hissing sound came from the pods as the locks released and atmosphere leaked into the compartment. The door opened up to reveal what was hidden inside.
      He stared at what was climbing out of the drop pods. He knew he should call in, but he was too afraid of being discovered.

2115 hours, January 17, 2553 (Military Calendar)
Ellis Island, New York City
Planet Earth, Milkyway System

      Derick Sunner, a three-year veteran of the U.N.S.C. Marines, stood on a tower over looking the events unfolding below. He was in charge of a small squad of six men, and each squad commander reported to a superior. It wasn't often that they broke down into squads like this, but given the size of this particular event, it was the best way to keep track of everything and everyone.
      At the moment the U.N.S.C. Marine band was playing a selection of different music. The bandstand was set up to the west of the main stage area. The music seemed to echo over the water, and to Derrick it seemed out of tune more than anything else.
      Out over the water, the lights of the patrol boats moved in a constant pattern that over the last few hours had become familiar. Then suddenly, as he was just about to turn away, he thought he caught a glimpse of something large and black blocking a portion of the distant shore lights, moving about forty feet above the water.
      He keyed his mike. "Can I get confirmation that harbor airspace has been cleared?"
      "Roger that," a voice responded. "Nothing moving over three feet above that water. Airline flights have been shifted to the north approaches, as well."
      "Thanks," Derrick said, staring intently at the area where he thought he'd seen the black form.
      He scanned the horizon along the lit shoreline, all the way to the Statue of Liberty.
      Maybe he was just getting too paranoid for is own good. He was starting to imagine things. And in his job, that wasn't a good thing to do.
      He went back to scanning the road that led onto Ellis Island, and all the vehicles still waiting to be cleared. This was going to be a long night before it was over. A very long night.
      Derrick looked back out over the black water at the Statue of Liberty. It stood out there,brightly lit and standing guard over the bay.
      There was something odd about old lady Liberty. He couldn't put his finger on it.
      He shook his head. Why was he having such a bad feeling about all of this?
      So far everything had gone smoothly.
      Maybe that was worrying him. Maybe it had gone too smoothly.
      As he turned around he never noticed the two black shapes moving swiftly across the water from Liberty Island heading straight for Ellis Island.