Attack on ERISTOCK Part 14: Only the Strong
Posted By: xitWOUND117
Date: 3 November 2003, 1:42 PM
Deployment +15 hours:12 minutes:07 seconds (SPARTAN-524 Mission Clock)/Surface
Mark slammed a clip into his assault rifle and slightly leaned over the wall. He watched as the Elites charged up the ladder. They were already halfway up. Mark brought his assault rifle up to his shoulder and pulled the trigger, holding it down. The closest Elites shields flickered and died, allowing multiple bullets to penetrate his head. The Elite went limp and fell sideways off the ladder and another Elite charged upward. Mark's rifle clicked as the clip became empty. He activated a plasma grenade and threw it onto an Elite, then he pulled back, away from the ladder. He let the empty clip fall to the top of the wall with a clatter and rammed in another clip. Leaning back over the wall, he continued firing at the Covenant warriors. After two more Elites fell off the wall Mark's rifle clicked empty once more. Shit! he thought.
"John!" he yelled at the SPARTAN II defending the other ladder. John stopped firing and looked at him. "What?!" he asked. "Give me your pistol!" Mark shouted over the sound of the invading Elites. John threw his pistol at Mark and resumed shooting the Covenant with his assault rifle. Mark caught the weapon and pulled out his own. He pointed both at the Elites climbing up the ladder and began firing both pistols simultaneously. Three Elites fell under his hail of bullets before the guns ran out.
Despite his attempts to stop the Elites, the Covenant managed to finally get to the top of the wall. An Elite reached the top, pushing Mark away. Mark, angered by the Elite, reached out and pulled the alien's feet out from under him. The Elite screamed as he fell off the wall until he smacked onto the ground with a bone-snapping 'crunch'.
But two more Elites pulled themselves up to the top of the wall and pointed their plasma rifles at Mark. Mark picked up a pistol and leaped at one Elite, cracking the pistol on the Elite's armored skull. The Covenant warrior stumbled backward, dazed from the blow. Mark took the opportunity to attack the other Elite, throwing his elbow into it's stomach and tripping it. The Elite fell onto the ground and dropped his rifle. Mark picked up the rifle and fired several shots at the Elite's head. Purple blood splashed onto the wall as plasma shots ripped apart his brain. The other Elite had recovered and was about to fire at Mark when his knees wobbled and he crumpled to the ground with a groan. John stood behind the Elites body; he had hit the Elite in the back with his rifle, breaking the alien's spine.
"Thanks," said Mark. John nodded and began reloading his rifle. Mark walked over the ladder and leaned over. There were no more Covenant left. Bodies were everywhere and blood slid down the wall. Mark gripped the highest rung of the ladder and started climbing down the wall. Suddenly he lost his hold and slipped down a few feet before he regained his grip on the ladder. Surprised by his unusual mistake, he looked at the ladder. It was slick with blood. Mark tightened his grip and continued climbing down.
Once he got to the ground he walked over to the Covenant building. George was inside with Morrurs, wrapping his wound. Morrurs's shirt was nearby, and it was soaked with blood. Morrurs himself was unconscious. "How is he?" Mark asked. "I think he'll be okay. He did lose a lot of blood, but I think he'll pull though," George answered. There was the sound of boots crunching against the ground and John appeared behind Mark. "We've gotta go," John said. Mark and George fell silent, and they heard the faint sound of dropship engines. George threw Morrurs over his back and picked his and the Marine's rifle. "Let's move," he said.
Mark and John ran back to the edge of the forest and collected their equipment, then ran back to the building. George led them to a door in the wall. After pressing a few buttons on a nearby light panel the door opened. The SPARTAN's ran through the doorway, continuing their long trek to the Covenant structure.
'Ilramamee turned off his Ghost's engine and climbed out, stepping onto the dry, broken ground. After escaping from the High Assembly's building he had gotten onto the Ghost and rode for hours, until he arrived here, where he stood. A huge building loomed before him. It might have been mistaken for a simple warehouse by a human, except the entire building was purple had a pair of odd looking doors at the front. 'Ilramamee walked over to one of the doors, which opened. He walked through and was greeted by three Elites guarding the next set of doors. One of the Elites stepped forward. "Do you have authorization to enter?" he asked. 'Ilramamee handed the guard a holodisk. The guard handed the holodisk to another guard behind him. "Place your hand here," said the guard, motioning toward a flat plate of purple metal. 'Ilramamee put his hand onto the metal and it began to glow. A sample of DNA was extracted from his hand by the metal plate. The other guard returned and nodded. "You have been granted access," said the guard. The door slid open and 'Ilramamee stepped through.
Before him was a giant metal wall and large, thick plates of glass served as windows at random intervals. 'Ilramamee walked over to a nearby holopanel and brought up a display of the room beyond the wall. The Flood within were in excellent health, and hungry as hell. 'Ilramamee chuckled to himself. Let us see how the Prophets deal with this! he thought. He reached out and pressed a light button. The first set of huge doors containing the Flood slid open.
A guard walked up behind him. "May I ask what you are doing, Excellency?" he asked. 'Ilramamee turned around and punched the guard in the face. The guard fell to the floor with a roar. 'Ilramamee put his foot on the guard's chest, holding him down, and held his fist a few feet in front of the guard's stomach. "Do not question me," 'Ilramamee muttered and activated his plasma sword. A blue light flashed across the room as the sword sprang to life, and purple blood flowed onto the floor in a pool. The guard roared again and clawed at the sword, trying to take it out of his mutilated stomach, but only succeeded in slicing off his own fingers. 'Ilramamee let go of the sword and pressed his knee against the guard's neck. He shoved a plasma grenade into the Elite's mouth and activated it, then he grabbed his sword and rolled away.
The grenade exploded in a flash of plasma, ripping apart the Elite's body. The other guards rushed to attack 'Ilramamee, but they were too far away. 'Ilramamee stood up and pressed another light button on the holopanel. The second set of doors slid open and the Flood were released.
Infection forms of the Flood rushed out to satisfy their massive hunger. The guards stopped and desperately tried to stop the wave of Flood by firing their plasma rifles. But there were too many Flood; the infection forms washed over the Elites, latching onto their bodies and dragged them to the ground, absorbing their blood. 'Ilramamee dropped his sword and held out his arms, greeting the army of Flood. The infection forms leapt up onto 'Ilramamee's body, and the huge Covenant warrior collapsed to his knees. With a groan he fell to the floor, and he felt a tentacle pierce his flesh and reach his spine. Something invaded his mind, and such was the end of 'Ilramamee.
Illyadar stood on the bridge of his flagship, the Elekendari. "Lieutenant Uverd," he said, turning to the NAV officer, "pull us away from the dock." "Yes sir!" was the Lieutenant's response, and the Elekendari jerked as it broke away from the dock. "Lieutenant Layuar," said Gruenovic, turning to the COM officer, "send a transmission to the rest of the fleet that it's time to leave." "Yessir!" said Layuar and he started typing.
The Elekendari was a mighty warship, a destroyer, and one of the last of it's kind. Its sister ship was the famous Iroquois, and the Elekendari was just as powerful as the Iroquois. Illyadar's massive flagship had been stolen from the UNSC shipyards during the Kilana Rebellion of 2538. It served as Illyadar's greatest ship until 2540, when Illyadar went into hiding. But now it was back into duty, and it would lead Illyadar's fleet into war.
"Alright men, get to the cryobays," ordered Illyadar. "Lieutenant Uverd, pilot a course through Slipstream and lock it into the computer. The rest of you, get moving!" Despite his hatred of the UNSC, Illyadar still ran his army with a rigid military fashion, much like the UNSC. But his men were stronger and better trained. He laughed as he marched to the cryobay. Out of hiding and into glory.
Deployment +15 hours:22 minutes:38 seconds (SPARTAN-218 Mission Clock)/Surface
George stopped running and set Morrurs down on the grass covered ground. "Morrurs! Hey, Marine!" said George, shaking Morrurs awake. The bloody Marine opened his eyes, "Yeah?" he said. "Come on man! Get up! I'm not going to carry you the whole way!" George said. Morrurs chuckled, then suddenly clutched his stomach in pain. George handed Morrurs his MA8B. "John, how many troops are the Covenant willing to send to hunt us down?" George asked. "Plenty," was the SPARTAN II's only response.
Surrounding the SPARTAN's were a mass of trees, as was common in that area on ERISTOCK. Silence filled the whole forest; no sound of singing birds, no sound of small animals battling each other for a nut. Nothing moved and nothing made a sound. "Odd," said Mark, "Why-" John cut him off with a loud "Quiet!". John stood still, not moving a muscle. Slowly the sound of dropship engines filled the air. "Damn it! Let's move!" shouted George. "No," said John, "they're not coming for us. They would have slowed down by now." Suddenly the shadows of the dropships fell over the forest and quickly passed on, the engine noise dying away.
"Where are they going?" Mark asked. "Who cares," said George. "They aren't coming for us, so don't waste time asking why. We've got to get to the Covenant dig site. Public, how many more hours until the fleet arrives?" Pubic sighed. "I'll put a countdown timer on your HUD," he said. Red letters and numbers appeared in the upper-right hand corner of George's HUD. It read: "COUNTDOWN TO FLEET ARRIVAL--22:03.32"
"Alright men, let's move out," ordered George. C-Team set off towards the structure; Mark helped Morrurs walk, John had point, and George covered the rear. They walked slowly for two hours without meeting any Covenant until they came upon the next layer of defenses.
John led the way out of the forest; he crept up a treeless hill and barely poked his head over the top. About one hundred yards away was another large wall, stretching once again into the horizon, and a building sat in front, guarding the wall. But there were no Covenant guarding the wall or the building at all. There were no bodies, no soldiers, no blood. Nothing, as if it had been abandoned. John motioned for the rest of the team to come up the hill as he stood up.
When George reached his side he pointed at the Covenant defenses and said, "There's no one there. Not one single Covenant. No signs of a fight, either. Weird, isn't it? You'd think they'd double their defenses after we broke through the first line, not abandon everything." "Well, let's be grateful for what we get. Let's climb over that wall before some Covenant do show up," said George. George led the way to the wall and gripped the ladder, pulling himself upward to the top. John followed him, then came Morrurs, and next was Mark, who helping Morrurs. When they reached the top of the wall they found the Covenant defenders.
On the other side of the wall was a huge pile of dead, mutilated Covenant bodies. Blood covered the ground, and there were streaks of blue, purple, and orange blood, showing signs of something dragging the bodies. The SPARTAN's and their Marine comrade climbed down to the pile of dead. Mark kicked a Grunt. Suddenly the Grunt's chest burst open and a large white, bulbous creature leapt at Mark. Mark yelled and hit the thing with his fist. The creature exploded in a cloud of pieces of flesh. "What the hell was that?" Mark shouted. "A Flood," answered John. "A what?" Mark asked. "A Flood. Don't know the details, but basically they are enemies. That's all you need to know. The rest you'll learn in combat, like I have."
A bullet whizzed by George's face, abruptly ending John's sentence. George spun around and saw something indescribable. What slightly resembled a Marine stood fifty yards away, his flesh was the same color as the thing that had leaped out of the Grunt's chest. Its head hung on its shoulders, held on by a partly severed neck. Its arms looked horrible, one had massive tentacles and the other looked barely normal. And in its hand, this creature wielded an M6D pistol.
John, without hesitation, took out his pistol and put six rounds into the creature's chest. After the creature had fallen John didn't move and watched the body. As if it was unhurt, the body leapt up and charged at John. The SPARTAN II put another two rounds into it and the creature fell again. This time John put his pistol away. "What was that?" Mark asked. "Another Flood," answered John. "But you just said that other thing was a Flood," Mark insisted. "And it is. They both are. If you hadn't punched that thing and, if you didn't have any shields, it would have cut through your armor and made you into that," John explained, motioning to the creature he had just gunned down.
Suddenly plasma started flying all around them. The SPARTAN's hid behind the bodies and Mark carried Morrurs with them. John peered over the mass of mutilated flesh and looked for the source of the plasma shots. He saw Flood, lot's of Flood, charging at them. Most were infection forms and infested Elites; there were one or two infested Marines. Most of the combat forms carried plasma rifles. John ducked back down behind the dead Covenant and turned towards George. "More Flood," he said, "and lots of them. Get ready to fight, these guys aren't pushovers." George checked his ammo in his rifle. Sixty rounds, his HUD indicated, a full clip. John took out a plasma grenade, activated it, then stood up and threw it at the closest Flood. He crouched behind the pile again and pulled out his rifle. The ground slightly shook as the grenade exploded and bodies of Flood flew over their heads, smacked onto the wall, and fell to the dirt. "Oh shit oh shit oh shit..." muttered Morrurs as he started at an infested Marine and backed away from it.
"On my mark we stand up and fire," said John. George and Mark nodded. Morrurs simply kept muttering, "Shit oh fuck damn oh Jesus they gonna pay...." John shrugged and counted silently in his head, 3, 2, 1, "Mark!" he yelled, standing up. He spotted the large group of Flood and fired at them, holding down the trigger, spraying bullets into their midst. Green blood flew everywhere and chunks of Flood bodies flew into the air as George, John, Mark, and Morrurs all fired their assault rifles. After a few seconds Morrurs crouched again to reload, his thirty bullet clip spent, and he began reloading his MA8B. A few seconds after that the SPARTAN's crouched to reload, too.
Soon, after many clips were emptied, the Flood were all dead, including any that got back up. John stepped out from behind the Covenant bodies and walked into the field of massacred Flood. He bent over and picked up a fragmentation, then held it out in front of him. "Do you know what this means?" he asked George, who was following Mark and Morrurs out of hiding. "Yeah," George answered, "the survivors of the Hymir managed to fight off the Covenant, but not these guys." "Damn," said Richard, who was in Morrurs helmet. "Well, let's get moving. The Covenant will undoubtedly send reinforcements," said George. "Mark, do you still have the rocket launchers?" "No sir," Mark answered, "I left them back at the other wall to help Morrurs. Besides, we'll get there faster if we're less burdened. We only need to carry food, ammo, and medical supplies." "You're right. Good choice," said George. "Thank you sir," Mark replied.
George marched off towards the forest beyond the wall, knowing they had a long way to go to reach their goal. The rest of his team followed wordlessly, occasionally taking grenades or ammo from the Flood bodies.
Kuri 'Sulamee stood atop a wall, the second of three defending the newly uncovered Ancient structure. A Prophet hovered next to him, floating in the air as he surveyed the bloody field. A pile of dead Covenant sat next to the wall; beyond that was a mass of dead Flood, spread out over the field. Between the wall and the pile of Covenant bodies were thousands of human bullet shells. "Thus is the devastation of a traitor," said the Prophet grimly. "The Flood now spread across our land like a plague, infecting everything. The once placid wildlife now joins their ranks, aiding the other infected, becoming as dangerous as a human warrior. 'Ilramamee has doomed his own discovery, since the Flood draw ever closer to the Ancient's structure. And now I find that the lines of defense cannot be held against these humans or the Flood?"
"I am quite sorry, Exalted," apologized the Elite, 'Sulamee. "I have sent out search parties to look for the humans and exterminate them, and I have tripled the defenses at the holy relic and its last wall of defense." 'Sulamee paused as a squad of Banshees flew over head, filling the air with the shrill whine of their engines. "I have sent out groups of our most holy warriors to attack the Flood. They will not be infected, Exalted, they will blow themselves apart before the possibility of infection comes close. I wouldn't worry, they will break the armies of the Flood." "Oh I would worry," said the Prophet, "for your life if you fail. The sacred building must not fall to the Flood." He floated closer to the Elite and brought his face two feet from 'Sulamee's. "It would mean the destruction of us all," said the Prophet in a stone-cold voice. "Of course, Exalted. I shall not fail," said 'Sulamee. The Prophet nodded and hovered away.
'Sulamee brushed a piece of dirt off his gold armor. He was completely calm, for he was sure the Flood could not break through the last defenses, nor the humans in special armor. The planet would be quite safe, and he would be rewarded.