The Enemy Within-Chapter Five: Out of the Frying Pan and Into the Fire
Posted By: Mind_Affecting_Parasite<email@example.com>
Date: 27 February 2004, 12:48 AM
Samantha Jones fell down to the floor, clutching at her smoldering shoulder. The last sounds of dying Covenant animals faded and came to a stop. Derrick and James slid into the adjacent room, staring intently down their gun sights into their individual beams of artificial light. Derrick stopped to kick in the maroon armored head of the gore splattered former "warrior" of a Squad Master, lying unnaturally over the threshold, before moving to back up the young Private Daniels.
"All clear," reported James.
"Copy that," responded Sergeant Ferring, kneeling on the ground. "Secure the perimeter."
Derrick holstered his weapon to help his teammate drag the bloody bodies and body parts towards the far door. One of them, an Elite having managed to survive the hail of bullets behind a Jackal, made an attempt to activate a plasma grenade. He received a blow to the back and a swift decapitation from James' M90. The brainless nervous system managed two twitches before shutting down.
"Hey Sarge?" asked Corporal Carter. "I just spent my last clip."
"You'll have to scavenge one of those Covenant pieces of ####, son."
Patrick let out a sarcastic, but felt, low moan. Everyone present felt the same: all they wanted was some good old UNSC weapons. A functional MA5B AR or M6D Pistol would be just fine over a plasma pistol. Alien pieces of junk.
Private Kyle Jones plopped down next to his good friend: Sam. That boy was damned lucky, thought Lance. Having his wife with him on the Pillar of Autumn was a miracle, and having her in his squad was an up front act of God, but then again it could also be considered a curse. Just having to worry about what happens to your spouse during the passing day can be hell. The young soldier knelt by his wife, treating her wound. Kyle uttered gentle assurances, his voice thick with an Australian accent. Those two had been the only two in their Underarmor and nothing else when the recent attack came, having been taking a nap. It had cost Samantha. She received some nice molten metal on her shoulder, splashed off the wall. Plus the fact of narrowly avoiding the plasma beam at fault, she was lucky, but Lance had the feeling that his squad's luck was running low.
The Sergeant watched as a caring husband quickly administered anti-burn gel and stuck on some dressings. Finally, Lance remembered that he was wounded too. He grunted as he touched his raw wound. Two of those needle projectiles had caught him in his lower thigh, right above the knee. He was fortunate that he had evaded the other three, otherwise he might now be missing a leg. The squad CO peeled back his leg armor to get a better look. A ragged hole sat in his tissues, blood welling in the inch deep wound and running down his leg. He took a brief second to soak up the dark red liquid with a torn piece of uniform and toss it aside on the floor. It stung as he sprayed a small amount of bio-foam over the raw meat, before sticking on a bandage and wrapping gauze around his leg to hold it in place.
"Carter, Daniels, Hunter; secure those weapons ASAP," he ordered, wincing as he stood. "We need as much firepower as we can find to get out of this place."
"Yes sir," replied the two Marines. Followed by an: "Aye" from the Navy pilot.
'Syimas' world was a blur. Black patches filled his vision, as if there was anything else to be seen. He tried to move but quickly ceased such attempts. The Elite could hear and feel some of his skin crack when he tried to move. Where was he? What had happened?: were the thoughts running through his aching head. An explosion, he started to recall. He could feel where pieces of alien metal had imbedded into his skin. Voices, he heard voices, distorted and faint, but he heard them. Unfortunately for him, he came to realize, the voices were human. A sharp pain lanced up his side, emanating from a kick in his gut. Another quickly followed in his leg, and then his ribs and shoulder. 'Syimas decided to remain motionless, play it safe, regardless of the discomfort. He would use this to his advantage, he hoped.
"Hey J-man, look at this guy," called Patrick, scouting out in the hall. "All toasty like."
James chuckled as he came closer in a crouch, keeping a full shell of shotgun goodness towards the blackened figure. "Hungry?" he joked.
"It's fresh," muttered Pat, noting the blood still slowly trickling from shrapnel impacts. "Real fresh."
The two would have continued, had they not remembered their situation. Pat jerked his rifle towards a door across the hall. James followed his partners eyes to the open door, filled with an inky black. Something could be heard, like a faint whisper of a slither, almost there, but not quite recognizable. Footsteps approached from behind them, thumping lightly as the source hit the ground. The two Marines jumped.
"What's this?" questioned Sergeant Ferring, placing a firm hand on Patrick's shoulder.
James sighed, laughing inside having seen his friend's startled expression.
"Some unlucky Covie," answered the calmed Pat, looking back down at the prostrate Elite. "Must have been thrown by the blast."
Sam and Kyle walked carefully forward out of the door, remaining alert of their surroundings. Samantha took the initiative and gave the body a hard kick on the hip for the trouble its kind had given her. Even with a hurt arm, she was full of angry energy. Derrick backed slowly through the door next, now favoring the AR given to him days previous.
"Well kids, let's move out," ordered the Sergeant.
The Humans pulled into formation and started across the hall. They quickly stopped; however, when the thought dead Elite, sprawled out on the floor, started making noises.
All weapon barrels jerked back to lay on the now known alive body. James was the first to approach, nudging a portion the burnt blue armor with the muzzle of his weapon. Lance approached and carefully with the help of the Warrant Officer, after looking the body over and stripping it of the remaining grenades and a pistol, flipped the form onto its back. It convulsed, trying to raise itself, but stopped due to the apparent intense pain. The formerly blue armor no longer had its luster. The odd alien alloy had protected the important parts of the creatures body. The revealed portions, however, had received quite a punishment. Its shields...well, there were none to be spoken of.
'Syimas struggled to maintain consciousness. The Humans around him spoke their filthy language. Yet another surprise had found the helpless Elite, he was exactly that: completely helpless. He would have killed the vermin as soon as they flipped him over, had the pain not been so great. His injuries must have been more serious than he had thought. 'Syimas now wondered what they would do to him. Hopefully, they would do him the favor of killing him, but Humans, he knew, were renowned for taking prisoners.
"Should we kill him?" he heard one of them say, but didn't understand any of it. The one holding a Plasma Pistol.
"I volunteer," announced the female, taking two steps forward. 'Syimas raised his head and opened his mandibles, letting out a low growl.
This, or the quick response of one of the Humans carrying a small metal weapon, caused the woman to recoil. The Elite let out a long gurgling laugh.
"Why I oughta," started Sam, glaring back at the death deserving Elite.
"Stow it soldier!" Sergeant Ferring said commandingly. He sighed and looked back at the low life animal. "We might need it."
Suddenly, the Elite froze, starring into the black beyond the nearby open doorway. A growling emanated from the void. No one standing in the hall, Human or Covenant, wanted to meet the source.
Even the severely burnt Elite managed to crawl toward the far end of the hall. Lance, followed by his Squad, was quick to follow.
"Grab the pansy!" shouted the Sergeant, backpedaling towards the only other open door in the vicinity, at the far end of the hall. "And Hunter! Get some grenades in that room!"
Just as Patrick and James grabbed the fleeing Elite, hefting the mass by it's appanages, a living wave burst from the void behind the black filled door. Samantha fired three shots, then turned and ran, closely followed by Kyle, following her Sergeant and the surprisingly swift twosome carrying the alien.
Derricks eyes grew wide as corpses flew towards the door in front of him. He managed to prime his two M9 HE-DP Grenades and toss them into the oncoming hoard, before sprinting for his life. He heard the explosions, and multiple wet slaps, but didn't dare turn to look back. The pitter-patter of little tentacles, stomping of stolen feet, all noises filling the Pilot's ears.