Engagements around Every Corner
Posted By: Mark Lieberg<firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 9 April 2005, 5:38 AM
AN Ive been busy, working on my newest series, which sadly no titl yet. Damn, stupid AN's..sorry MCC. Ok.
Chapter 9: Running from Covenant, Sentinels, Flood...Hey, How Can it Get Worse?
The Sergeant Major squandered through the hallways as the rag-tag Delta Company took his six. He was careful to look out for Flood activity, but if they got close his M60 shotgun could handle them.
The M60 Shotgun was used company wide, with shredder rounds to pierce the enemy. The Sergeant Major, tall with a straight back, with dark brown hair and eyes, with a strong facial expression, stepped towards a door covered in blood. The Door was muti-colored. Blue, Purple, and Green blood covered the windows, and it was not a good sign. They were in a two-door hallway, and if they were caught inside, they were goners; the Sergeant knew that.
As he took a step forward the door abruptly opened up and spat out a dead Flood warrior, a former Elite. The creature's hands and a leg were missing; the foul stench caused the men to gasp as blood oozed from the wounds. The Sergeant stepped over the body, and into the huge room.
One Lance Corporal in the back closed his eyes, and tried to hold his breath as his Sergeant walked over and to the ledge where there was a shaped like trench in the middle running through the room.. He tried to ignore the stench by breathing through his sleeve but it was powerful. One by one they entered the room and into the battle-torn war zone. It wasn't a pretty sight and one man conveyed all their thoughts by throwing up.
The Covenant, the Sergeant Major thought as he saw at least a dozen torn up and burnt bodies of Grunts lay along the side with missing parts of Elites scattered everywhere. Man, I wish they were on our goddamned side right now. Within every foot, there was blood, blue or black they were alike. Confusingly, as the Sergeant walked further, he saw only two Flood bodies, and one puddle; probably from a Combat Carrier Form.
He heard another Corporal; from the sound of his voice it was Corporal Leonard Steel. He was tough, but a wiseass in battle; the Sergeant didn't like him. "Man Sarge, why don't we just leave this place? I mean, come on, does the fucking Brass give a shit?"
The Sergeant paused at that question; it was a yes or a no. But he knew it was neither, although he wanted to admit that they probably wouldn't care about their being alive or not. Section 3 he had to admit had been a top secret fucked up division in the UNSC. He never liked those people in those uniforms, doing experiments that no one knew about.
Especially about the Spartan Program that some Women helped create and it had been a total success. He watched his men walk near a Grunt body, and kicked it. The man smiled, and walked away, but the thing that was more important was the five Combat Flood Forms standing in the top level on the floor waiting to attack.
"Steel, just keep your eyes peeled, I don't want any Flood getting to us, before the Covenant, and" The Sergeant Major saw the creature now, its huge tentacles dropped with blue blood, its mutated, amputated body from a dead Elite, hungered for blood.
The Sergeant just knew what to give it, so he quickly sidestepped, chucked a grenade, leveled his Shotgun, and started shooting. The rest of Delta Company fired at the same direction, not noticing the two Flood Carriers coming down from behind them. They fell, and in a split second, exploded as tiny Infection Pods started swarming at the men. Blood sprayed the men and the floor as the creatures continued to swarm towards the Marines.
"No you don't you freaking," Private Chester spoke before feeling a tiny, hurtful pinch in his back. It hurt like hell, burning with rage, he started to cry, and then fell to the ground, motionless. The Corporal to his right saw him, and cursed in between breaths. He saw the infection form crawling up the Privates leg, and quickly kicked it. It popped, and the Private struggled to his feet "Thanks man." He quickly said as he shot two other Infection Forms behind them.
They popped as more tan-dark gray blood splashed on the ground. The Sergeant Major was busy shooting Combat Forms coming out of nowhere. He thought he should be dead by now; perhaps it was just luck he asked himself as he took three more out with his shredder round.
The bullet shredded the Combat Flood, and tore it apart. Its head was disconnected from its body as it rolled toward the Sergeant Major. He stuttered, and kicked it firing another round into a Combat Form. This time it was a mutated human based body, from the looks of it, he couldn't believe it. There was still a nametag on the Flood; Sergeant Falcon, sewn in thick black.
He had heard on scattered transmissions that when the Flood got him they had taken the, yes it still had it! The Index dangled from the body, and was deeply tucked inside. The Sergeant Major fired, and quickly ripped the Index out. "Hey, Marines, lets get the hell out of here!"
"Roger that sir!" They all yelled, as they started, but jogging back towards the tunnel. As the Sergeant got close to the door, he saw Corporal Steel change colors. "Sir! Get away shoot me! Its inside, arghh!" The Corporal yelled in pain and agony, as the Sergeant knew what was wrong. Leonard Steel had been infected with the Floods virus, and it was spreading like a cold threw his body. The Private stood straighter, "Sir, please!"
The Sergeant Major frowned, "I'm sorry son." He fired his Shotgun and the boy's body slumped to the ground. The Sergeant Major went over and kicked down hard with his boot on his back and was rewarded with the pop! of an Infection Form. He turned and ran back, away from the tunnel, and the rest of the area.
Warrant Officer Darrel was doing a routine flight path around one of three surviving CP's since the Battle of the Immersing Light when he heard a message over the COM channel, he was surprised to hear that there was a group of Marines out away from the Command Post Alpha.
This is Sergeant Major William Lieberg; I have lost one man to a Flood encounter, and we are evacuating to a secure location. Enemy presence is directly behind us; repeat, enemy presence is directly behind us. We need extraction on the double does anyone copy? Can anyone offer assistance? Please, I don't want to lose more men."
The Warrant Officer was a top-notch pilot, and loved to do aerial combat tricks with his Longsword Interceptor, but mainly, he didn't want to leave a man behind. So he checked his flight path, and found out that the signal was directly ahead of him, just a click due East. He punched the throttle and gave it everything the craft had. Hopefully, he would make it to help the Sergeant Major, and rescue his men from the Flood.
"We need extraction on the double does anyone copy Can anyone offer assistance? Please, I don't want to loose more men." the Sergeant Major asked into his COM unit continuing to run as he held on to his Shotgun. Man was this stuff heavy, the Sergeant thought as he took a peek behind him. He saw at least twenty Combat Flood types running towards them, running wasn't the right word, he couldn't really describe the way the monsters moved but he knew they were catching up, quickly.
His men wouldn't last the run.
William continued to run with his men from Delta Company, he heard a faint sound, and then it started to grow louder. It wasn't any Covenant ship he had heard, unless it was one of those Phantoms the Covenant had started using. No, it definitely wasn't Covenant.
The trees were covering the skies, so he had to run a little more to see, and watch what was above him. He breathed harder and harder as he ran, seeing an open patched area he ran faster and breathed harder. Before he got another foot closer, he was slowed down by an urgent cry for assistance. "Arghh, help!" A Corporal cried as two of his friends ran to get him and the others gave suppression fire towards the Flood.
The creatures were falling one by one, but every time a body fell, two more would appear in their place, creating an unstoppable attack force. The two buddies of the Corporal lifted his body, and started running to the open area. William saw the three, and turned around; leveling his Shotgun he got to work. He pumped three shells into five Flood units. They fell like bags of sand, and the little Infection Forms inside popped.
The loud sound of engines caught the Sergeant Major's ear as he saw hundreds, if not thousands of bullets come flying out of nowhere hitting the Flood. Please let it be what I think it will be, please. A light flooded the dark roads, and illuminated the damp pathways with its illuminating presence. Then he saw the Longsword Interceptor, its sleek black hull flying quickly through the sky. It was a beautiful sight, and it was hard to imagine help arrived out of nowhere. More bullets came, firing and killing Flood Units, blood covered the bodies of the rotting carcasses, and the Flood continued to fall.
As William continued to fire, he started to hear more noise coming, and two more Longsword Interceptors came firing their Coaxial Chaingun's helping the Marines get to safety.
The Sergeant Major smiled, as he was overfilled with joy, but focused back, instead of the two friends carrying the Corporal, he gave one of them Marines his Shotgun, grabbed the Corporal, and knelt carrying the Marine on his back. He was roughly around hundred and fifty pounds, enough weight the Sergeant could carry, and he ran to the light. He saw a Pelican Dropship waiting for them with five other UNSC Marines waiting to EVAC the men that fought hell to get out alive.
As he carried the soldier, he made it to the Pelicans troop bay and lowered the young Corporal down to his seat. The other eight Marines made it to the Pelican too, as more and more Flood came running towards the craft. The Longsword Interceptors that came fired even more as over fifty Flood Units littered the field. Blood stained the ground, and covered the green grass.
"Sir? Sir?" The Pilot that landed the Pelican asked as he strapped himself to his seat. "Are you ready for lift off sir?" The Sergeant Major pondered that question, was he ready? Was he ready to fight this war? Was he going to die? Was he going to live? These questions filled his mind as he looked up, staring at the Corporal that had broken his leg. Was it really worth the right to live? William shook himself as he looked towards the cockpit. The Pelicans engine was heard as they whined to life, dust sputtered on the ground as the Longswords gave covering fire. The Sergeant Major took a breath.
"Let's get out of here." He said as the Pelican lifted without disorder, and flew to the sunset, heading towards Command Post Alpha, to help find a way to get away from this Ring, and the horrors the ancient Forerunner Race had brought to them.
021 Enable Fire floated harmlessly as Sentinels Guarded the ancient Construct. Its center brightened with a green light as the machine flew through a service tunnel. It didn't like these long pathways, and wished that the Rings Teleportation grid was online, hopefully the Reclaimers' didn't find out about the Rings structure, and how to operate it.
Because of the increased security, 021 Enable Fire raised security with over a dozen Sentinel Droids at each location that was important to exterminate the Flood. The Forerunner would be pleased to hear of the progress being made, and that the Ring would soon be activated, if one would be convinced that it was necessary to activate the Ring's defense systems.
As 021 Enable Fire continued floating about, the Forerunner that hid on this Halo Ring for over ten millennia sat in his ancient chair, watching his work progress. Without ships from the past, his life was meaningless. It had no purpose, but to the recent events has got it thinking. Would the Flood find out where it was hiding, were the Flood able to pilot the Reclaimers Vehicles they had undoubtedly brought to this Ancient Ring? This was a time or year that things like this would happen. It didn't like waiting here, waiting to get caught, or killed by the Flood. It wanted to progress, and with 021 Enable Fire helping it; they would soon exterminate Life in the whole galaxy.
Command Post Alpha
"I thank you for getting the Index, and bringing it back, but your plan. We simply just don't have enough ships to get all of us out of here Sergeant! Your plan is reluctantly impossible to accomplish with out leaving ten of our men behind. We have families waiting for us Sergeant. You don't expect me to leave ten of our men?" The Lieutenant Colonel asked the Sergeant Major after he was told of the idea. "What would happen to their families? What then Sergeant?"
William Lieberg cleared his throat before replying. The recent hours, attack at Command Post Charlie increased to ten times a day. Lowering Ammunition supply to that base, and to the Marines there. But this idea of his to leave the Halo ring with the limited amount of ships was absurd, but there had to be a way. "Sir, I don't want to leave anyone behind, but if it's me who has to stay behind, then so be it.
"I once had a family, I miss them, but do you know where they are sir? They were on Reach, a planet that was glassed, and wasn't evacuated in time for other families to escape. What about them sir?" The Colonel was speechless; he never knew this Sergeants family had died on Reach, a battle that had sadly lost hundreds of thousands, if not millions of lives. The Sergeant had a point. But he wasn't going to accept it, because he wanted everyone to make it back home alive.
"Sergeant, I'm greatly, and deeply sorry for your loss. But the number of ships we have can't carry every man and women that is on this ring. There has to be sacrifices to make the right things work, I'm sure you know that Sergeant." William thought of Reach, how they had lost that battle, how could those machines lose against the Covenant; he had heard they were invincible and they could never die. He guessed he was wrong. He sighed and looked at the Lieutenant Colonel straight into the eyes.
"Sir, I will volunteer to stay back and hold off the Flood, and Covenant forces until everyone leaves. I will ask for volunteers soon sir." The Sergeant saluted the Colonel, and got a return salute. What the hell am I thinking? He wondered to himself as he sidestepped and left the Colonel's office to prepare a plan to get everyone off the Ring after he had a count of all the ships that had survived two weeks ago. Hopefully, they would all get away, away from this place. Except for one man, and a group of Marines, and that man was him; Sergeant Major William Lieberg.
A man walked out of the office building dubbed 'Alpha Base'. As he left, he saw the skies light up with a bright red color, it was almost beautiful, until he saw a flock of Pelicans, and Longsword Fighters coming from what used to be, which was now destroyed, 'Charlie Base'. He continued to walk after another breath, he was still puzzled on how an ancient race could build such a great facility, and its only purpose was to contain the Flood. What worthless pile of crap, the man thought was he walked towards the parked Warthog. He had brought it from the garage they had set up just about three minutes from where he was now.
He hopped in and ignited the engine. He heard the exciting sound as the gas kicked in once he stepped on the pedal. The Hog drove backwards, and then, he punched it. The Warthog zoomed through the turf as it stopped near a barracks dubbed 'Delta Company'. The tent was huge, as all standard military issued soldiers who had equipped them in case of outdoor survival. Now they used them for replacement houses when their CP was crowded, or destroyed. He saw the group of men he helped fight against the Flood, and walked towards them. He noticed one Corporal, finally catching his name; Corporal Steve Randle sat in his chair with his leg cast up.
The Corporal saw the Sergeant, and gave him a weak salute. His body ached with pain raising his arm, but the Sergeant signaled him to lower his hand. As the Sergeant looked at his men, he spoke, "Marines." They all heard, and remembered the sound of the Sergeant. They faced towards him, with strong facial expression, and saluted him. He saluted back, and he continued. "I need volunteers, I spoke with the Lieutenant Colonel today, and he said it was possible, but there's a catch."
A Corporal spoke quickly after that last sentence; "There aren't enough room on the ships, so some have to stay behind." William nodded in response and the rest looked towards the ground. They were disappointed, some of them had families, and some didn't, but he knew they would help to get everyone off the Ring alive, with the Index. The Sergeant waited for a few seconds and pressed on.
"I would like to ask this Company for volunteers, but I would only need five to stay with me, and get left on the Ring." He ended as he looked at each of their faces. They were thoughtful into considering this thing they were about to volunteer in. Corporal Steven Randle spoke first.
"Ill stay sir." William smiled at that, and nodded sideways.
"Sorry Steve, you need to go, you're wounded and you need medical attention. Plus don't you have a wife and kids?" He shouldn't have said that as the others thought about that as well now. Steve thought to himself, and unpinned one of his insignia's to look at it. He was thinking, was it worth it, worth leaving her, and his kids, to save a bunch of men and women he didn't even know. Yes, he thought it was quite worth it, and it was honorable.
"Sir, even though I miss my family, they'll know I died for a great reason, and that was to save my fellow Marines. Besides, I don't think the goddamned Brass do care about us. All they want is to keep their little organization hard to find, and have us as pawns. What I'm basically saying is...I want to stay." Once that was said, the others thought again. Each of them had thoughts running through their minds Williams thought as he waited.
"Yeah, my parents are dead anyways. Might as well join them sir." One said up front, another responded, "Ill join sir, nothing like taking a bath in a pool of shit that's worth wiled." Williams looked at the others, they all nodded, and William smiled, looking at them.
"I thank you gentlemen. I trust you that our stay here will be peaceful. We're going to do another mission, one last mission." William smiled, as the others went back to work, as Steve cut his cast off, and got some medicine to not quell the burning pain.