Battle for Norah: Part Three
Posted By: Sterfrye36<Sterfyre36@yahoo.com>
Date: 8 July 2003, 12:25 AM
Cunningham held the LAAG's fire button down with such concentration that his knuckles turned white.
Thousands of rounds tore through the Flood's ranks, but more kept coming.
Of course, the Hogs weren't the only thing facing down the Flood.
On a hill west of their position, two Scorpion Main Battle Tanks were bombarding and wiping out the Flood by the dozens-no, hundreds with their huge shells.
Pierce Hudson's heart was hammering and his mouth was dry. He was also sweating profusely.
He was nowhere near the fighting, but he could still vaguely see the orange flash and high crack of UNSC weapons, the slight whoosh, fraash and glow of Plasma Rifles and pistols, wielded by both Human and Flood.
The fact that he was sitting directly under one of the Scorpion's main guns didn't help either.
As a matter of fact, he had embarresingly soiled himself the first time it fired.
He glanced down at the Autumn's backup AI chip.
He had to guard that thing with his life...
Then an idea struck him.
He craned his neck to look at the driver's seat of the tank.
He was looking for the diagnostic slot for a class "D" AI.
The Autumn's backup AI was a class "A" and would therefore have no trouble interfacing or booting up on the Scorpion's systems.
Once he found the slot, he inserted the AI into it.
He didn't expect what was coming next.
Inside the Scorpion, she awoke...and then leapt into action.
The Scorpion's controls locked up.
McCarthy, the Scorpion's gunner, wrestled with them for a moment, thinking something vaguely about how, if he couldn't get the dumb thing to work, they'd all be dead in a matter of seconds.
The Scorpion then rumbled to life, pitching both Hudson and Jacob off of the treads.
The Scorpion opposite it also came alive, and together, they charged down the hill, their cannons and machine guns firing.
She bit her virtual lip; no matter what computation she ran, she'd be cutting it close.
She commanded the Scorpions down the hillside, directly through the Floods' ranks, towards the shuttle bay.
Barnes swung the Hog toward the right, narrowly missing a Carrier form.
What he saw when he turned made running into the Carrier seem like a more viable option.
A Warthog rambled towards the other tank; it was coming in to fast to turn, brake or have the Scorpion dodge it.
She lowered the other tank's barrel...
All Cunningham knew, was that he was screaming. Loudly.
The Warthog's left, front wheels smacked into the barrel and began to power over it.
The Hog went a good seven feet into the air before rolling.
The Warthog began to barrel roll to its right while Cunningham plugged away with the chain gun, narrowly missing the Scorpion in the process.
Cunningham and Barnes held on for dear life while the roll completed. Miraculously, the Warthog landed right side up. Normally, a roll would have been seriously injurng and possibly fatal to all of the occupants. However, the seven foot height had given the Hog enough air to complete it.
Cunningham immediately made a mental note to do three things: First, kill Barnes for his driving skill, promote whoever was driving and shooting that Scorpion, and finally, go to confession the first thing once they got back to the nearest UNSC base.
The tanks continued to roar towards the Norah's docking bay, crushing hundreds of Flood under their treads.
The Scorpion's fired their cannons one last time, twenty meters from the door of the docking bay.
The shells blew just above the bay's door, collapsing it and stopping most of the Flood.
With their main avenue of escape cut off, the Flood began to recede. Those that remained were easy pickings for the Hogs' LAAGs.
Once all of the Flood were gone, Cunningham hopped out of the turret and stalked towards the Scorpions. He had a half mind to kill whoever was driving them, and another half to thank them for saving his life.
Once he had reached it, he opened his mouth to yell, and froze when he saw a 2D representation of the Autumn's backup AI.
It was a "she", and she was wearing a white tank top, green pants, with fiery red hair. She held an Assault Rifle in her arms.
She was all business.
"Lieutenant Commander Cunningham," she began. "AI Sami reporting for duty."