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Battle for the Norah: Part Six
Posted By: Sterfrye36<Sterfrye36@yahoo.com>
Date: 11 October 2003, 2:29 AM

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      Everything was set. The four ascenders had been attached to the floor a few inches away from the glass.
      "Frag!" Cunningham yelled as he and four other Marines tossed one Frag grenade apiece onto the glass.
      The grenades went off and cratered and splintered the glass two feet. That glass was tough.
      "Frag again!" The Lieutenant Commander yelled as he tossed another grenade and the four other Marines followed suit.
      The grenades exploded and blew a hole threw what left of the crater, which caused several Covenant to look up, startled at the sudden appearance of the Marines.
      One gold armored Elite in particular, Kall 'Kanamee felt all of his mandibles go slack at once.
      Humans on The Norah? How was that possible? He was brought back into combat as the Grunt to his right, named Dadap, had an infection form leap on to his face and screamed. Kanamee vaporized the unfortunate Grunt with an explosion from the Fuel Rod Gun he had scooped up.

      The glass had muted the sounds of the battle below. Before it had sounded like someone hammering on aluminum siding. Now it created precisely the sound of a screeching cat being kicked to death by a air raid siren, all while being forcibly pushed through a meat grinder.
      Cunningham hooked the D-Ring onto the cord and took one last look before he jumped through the hole he had created in the glass.
      All that carnage...he grinned. The Helljumpers had nothing on the Marines about to go through that glass.
      Then he jumped.
      What a rush! All of his limbs felt light; his senses became incredibly alert. He could see and process everything at once. Adrenaline had flooded his system and he felt as though he could take on the Flood in their entirety. As he slid down the rope he fired his Assault Rifle; the bullets tore apart a combat that had jumped right in front of the gold armored Elite, which sent its sponge like gore splattering all over the floor.
      He landed right beside a Jackal, which, needless to say, was surprised and started to bring its plasma pistol to bear, but Cunningham jerked the weapon out of its hands and fried a Combat form with it. He then proceeded to hand the pistol back, smiled and said:       "Hi."
      The Jackal just gawked until Cunningham pointed out a rather large concentration of Combat forms on the floor below. Cunningham primed and tossed another frag grenade as the Jackal obliged by overcharging his pistol and fired in their midst, mangling two and setting one on fire in the ensuing explosion while the grenade tore the rest to bloody ribbons.
      By this time ten more Marines had come through the hole and were showing the crew of the Norah how to rip the Flood a new one. As more Marines came, more Flood fell in quicker succession...but something was wrong.
       The Flood were still coming. Cunningham moved away from the Jackal, stepped over a mangled corpse, reloaded and continued to fire.
      Flood were falling down like clockwork, but instead of receding like they should've, it seemed like there was actually more of them. It was like the more that they killed, the more there were.
      Not unlike their usual modus operandi, Cunningham thought to himself. It was right about then that he noticed the Infection forms starting to climb up the walls. This fact was brought to his attention as a Jackal screeched and sent a stream of plasma arcing toward the Infection Forms. Cunningham immediately rotated and his Assault Rifle spit lead.
      His burst caught one of the lead Infection Forms, causing it to set off a chain reaction, eliminating an entire group.
      ...And this wasn't just the usual feeling that Cunningham got, there were more of them. Cunningham started to feel nervous. They were starting to overwhelm the group, even with the Marines in there mixing it up. The infection forms were coming in waves up the wall. He had to do something about those. They were the largest threat to the force.
      Over the command freq he yelled "Strom, I want your men on those infection forms! Barnes, get your men on those at the bottom of the wall. I want those Infection Forms gone, do you hear me?"
      "Yes, sir" They both said. Then Strom said "What about the Covies?"
      "For all I care, they can fall on their cute little plasma swords. We can't depend on them. All we've got is ourselves."

Back up on the observation deck, Pierce Hudson had a decision to make. From here, he could see the battle as it unfolded, and he was worried. They were getting overwhelmed, even after Cunningham had split his fire....He and the 19 other Naval personnel could balance that out...Even win it for the sudden alliance. A frown creased his brow as he considered his options. He and his men had been given specific instructions to not dive into the fight for any reason...but what's a fight if you didn't improvise?
      He grinned. He'd always wanted to be a hero.
      "All right, guys," he said as he turned; he toyed with the Plasma Pistol hanging off of his hip. "Cunningham obviously needs us, so I say we get down there and fight." He was met with incredulous looks. He had been known to be the most reckless of the backup crew, and he wasn't exactly what one would call trusted.
      He waited for volunteers, and, finding none, resolved to dive into the fight himself. He walked over to the ascenders and started to lower himself down, hand over hand. The relatively large diameter of the rope made it possible. Despite the fact that he was using gripping with his bare hands and was looking over his shoulder to make sure he wouldn't get nailed by a stray shot, he was making good progress.
      80 feet...
      60 feet...
      40 feet...
      He quickly shimmied down the last twenty feet and dropped to the deck.