They're Random, Baby!

Fan Fiction

This Is Our Land-Chapter 1
Posted By: Carson Woo<chinamancarson@yahoo.com.hk>
Date: 23 May 2011, 4:55 pm

Read/Post Comments

Chapter 1 - The Mission
13/2/2992, 1618 Hours
Base LAST RESORT, Planet Harvest

"Incoming!!!" Gunnery Sergeant Gary Johnson shouted.  Rains of Covenant plasma mortar dropped on the entrance of the base. Private Downs, a member of Gary's 1st squad, blew into atoms as a mortar landed on him. The poor private barely have time to scream before his was vaporized by the heat produced. 

Private Howard was enraged by Downs' death, so the marine charged towards the Brutes and Grunts approaching the base, only to be blasted to his death by plasma weapons wield by the Covenant. "Sir, we cannot hold our position! We've got two KIA!" Gary told Colonel Terry, his CO and the highest commanding officer on Harvest. "Fall back. Now!" Terry ordered.

"Fallback! Into the base!" Gary ordered. He threw a fragmentation grenade at the Covenant Grunts, killing four aliens. "Cover us!" he shouted to Sergeant Edward Chen, the leader of the 2nd squad guarding the door. Edward nodded and fired his battle rifle without aiming. A Brute screamed in agony and fell.

The 1st squad, now consisting of 8 marines including Gary, enter the base, followed by the 2nd squad. The blast doors slammed shut and 5 meters of super hardened titanium-A+ separated the Covenant and the marines. Rifles were slug across the marines' back. The shields of the marines' armor regenerated.

Gary and Edward's Company, consisting of fifty marines waiting for evacuation holding LAST RESORT is the last human military presence on ground. After Harvest's glassing in 2525, the colony was not terraformed because of strategic reason. Instead of being colonized again, the planet served as an outpost of the UNSC - Elites alliance at this sector. The only humans on the planet are marines and other military personnel, and Harvest was transformed into a military world with little buildings and shipyards. The colony is a 'Colony Ready to Abandon', as stated by HIGHCOM. In case of a Covenant attack, the UNSC will offer little resistance on ground- and pull the fight to space. UNSC ships are now as powerful as the Elites' ships are, and with Reach reterraformed, the number of shipyards increased and as the number if ships.

So, just to conclude the situation of Humanity now. Shield Domes were deployed on every single colony. Ships adapted Elite technology with shields installed, MAC upgraded, and fully upgraded Slipspace drives. Soldiers are issued armors with shields and also under slug plasma weapons to make a hybrid Human- Elite weapon. To make matters simple, human technology is just the same as the Elites. And that enabled us a way to fight the Covenant in space.

This, of course, was all just simulations before the Covenant Hierarchies decided to start their genocidal campaign all over again. Harvest was the first colony to be assaulted, due to its position.

Everything was going according to plan, marines retreated and was evacuated to space. Human and Elite ships enjoyed victories over the Covenant in space.

However, everything changed as the Brutes unleashed their ultimate weapon- or ship- the Covenant Super Cruiser-Pathfinder. Unlike previous Super Cruisers, this one is ten times the mass of a UNSC Destroyer. The Cruiser was well armed, and its weapons burnt Human and Elite ships like fire burning paper- fast and deadly.

The original plan was abandoned, just like Harvest. Now, the battle for Harvest have lasted for 6 years, with UNSC troops on the verge of losing the colony. Ground forces were redeployed but with little success. Elites sent strike teams and managed to captured the Super Cruiser, but was quickly dispatched by groups of suicidal Unggoy, who triggered a chain reaction by blowing up their methane tanks.

Now, let's leave the backstory alone and visit the marine in LAST RESORT.

Gary's COM pad beeped. He toke the little machine out and a massage from Colonel Terry , his commanding officer, appeared on screen. YOU AND CHEN. TO THE HEADQUARTERS ASAP. BRING YOUR SECOND IN COMMAND TOO. NOW. BRIEFING STARTING IN TWO MINUTES. YOUR LOSS IF YOU ARE LATE.

Gary clapped his hands to get the marines' attention. He showed the com pad to Edward, Corporal Haverson and Corporal Eston. "The skipper seems jumpy," he told the marines. "Lance Corporal Kola, you have command of 1st squad before I come back. Guard the doors!" "Yes sir!" Kola replied. Edward made his arrangements too. The four marines sprinted towards the elevator. Eston  punched the button for 18th floor, and the elevator rushed upwards. The marines were rewarded for their quickness as they were the first to arrive.

"Welcome to my little corner of the Universe," Terry welcomed the marines. "Glad that you are not blasted to atoms, Gary. I can still please your father." 

Gary felt his eyes wet. His father, Captain Howard Johnson, was destroyed along with his ship, the UNSC Frigate Last Of The Brave. Just before the Captain's death, he asked his best friend-Colonel Terry to protect Gary. Gary was just 23. As the descendent of Sergeant Major Avery Johnson, he is much more lucky than his ancestor. If the UNSC is not fighting a war and need every single one to fight, he would now be in the Officer Candidate School on Luna and he would probably be a Lieutenant by now.

However, Gary still have a hope that his father conducted a Slipspace jump before the torpedoes hit Last Of The Brave. It would be unlikely, though, because the torpedoes generated more heat than the hull van sustain. As a result, the Last Of The Brave would be blasted to atoms in Slipspace even though they have jump. 

"Permission to enter , sir!" Gary snapped off a crispy salute. Terry and Edward was now the closest people to a family for Gary. With his mother back on Reach, still weeping every day, he treated Terry as his uncle. "Granted, son." replied Terry. "You're lucky to be be the first," Terry whispered to Gary and Edward. "You and your squads probably will be the ones to conduct this near-suicidal mission."

The Sergeants stopped. "Mission, sir? Sir, we are ODSTs, ODSTs are for near-suicidal missions! The Utgard mission is suicidal, but we managed to finish it! Permission to lead that mission, sir!" Gary replied loudly, and everyone heard. "What mission, Gunny?" asked Corporal Haverson. Gary ignored Haverson and held his gaze at Terry. He wanted to avenge his father. He want to kill every single one in the Covenant. "If Captain Howard A. Johnson is your friend, let me do so. Sir!" Gary felt his eyes wet, ready to cry out as loud as he could. He resisted that temptation.

Terry patted Gary's shoulder. "Very well, Gunnery Sergeant. Mission request granted." He turned to Private Bradley, his personnel assistant. "Tell the others stay downstairs. Call 1st and 2nd up here ASAP." "Yes sir." replied Bradley.

As the Orbital Drop Shock Troopers arrived, Terry briefed the marines in the mission.To Terry's surprise, the troopers expressed quite positive emotions after knowing that they are about to go on a near suicidal mission. 

They are excited.  

They are ready to die for the UNSC and Humanity.

Stealth Hangar, Base LAST RESORT, Main Launch Bay

Gary waited for the ODSTs, total eighteen marines, to broad the Eagle L-52 special operations aerial assault ship before settling in the pilot's seat. The ship was well armed, with 25 HE-64 missile warheads and a dual laser beam. Ballistic weapons are mounted at the back. It can be fired by either the pilot or the gunner sitting on the rear. Fire holes on the sides allow passengers to attack. 

Sitting beside the Gunnery Sergeant is Edward, as his copilot. "Ready when you are, Gary," said Edward. Gary nodded and thumbed the start button to launch the engines. The thrusters roared to life and lifted them off the launch bay. "Hold on!" shouted Gary.

The ship, about 50 meters long, ejected out of the hangar. They wasn't noticed until a Grunt minor jumped and screamed to his Brute leader. The Grunt and his companions were silenced by the machine-gun on the rear. Wraiths fired on the ship, but the shields flickered and held.

The first phase of Operation:CAMPING ON THE MOUNTAIN has begun. The ODSTs will be extracted to the ONI sloop The Monument, then they will be spilt into two groups. First squad will land on their objective, the Covenant Super Cruiser using the Eagle. Second squad will drop by HEV drop pods.

Then, the troopers will attempt to capture the cruiser. If they can't, they will blow the core and hopefully escape before the ship blows up. However, it would be unlikely that eighteen common human can assualt a Super Cruiser crowded with a few thousand Covemant enemies. Gary expressed his concern on the matter to Colonel Terry, and as a result, ONI and HIGHCOM both sent a reinforcement to the group. Gary doubt that two additions will help, but orders are orders. He believe his commanders are wise enough to send the best as they have to crack the Covenant Super Cruiser.

"Commander Hammond? We are coming in. Open the bay doors please." Gary told Commander Hammond, the commander of the ONI sloop. "Come in," the commander replied. "And be careful, your reinforcements are here. Be careful not to bump them." "Yes, sir!"

The Eagle dived to rendezvous with the sloop's entry bay, and rose up into the entry bay thanks to the sloop's artificial gravity pull. The Eagle settling on the floor. Gary pulled the key out of its slot and the engines stopped humming. "Fall out, troopers!" Edward told the ODSTs in the troop bay. Edward and Gary walked out. Then, to his surprise, a Spartan-III from Omega Company and a Dreadnought, the newest creation by ONI Robotics Department, was waiting by the passage that led to the rest of the ship. The 'reinforcements' joined the ODSTs.

Both the Spartan and the Dreadnought were two point four meter high. The Dreadnought beeped and the marines received a massage from the machine. "Greetings!" the massage appeared on the marines' Heads Up Display. "I am D-153 from the Office of Naval Intelligence. It it very nice to meet you! I hope that the operation will be a success!"

The marines looked at each other. Corporal Haverson asked Gary on the team frequency. "Any idea what that is, Gunny?" "Read article 267 part A chapter 73 in your armor's library." replied Gary.

The marines saluted the Spartan. SPARTAN-O244, Richard, a Lieutenant, returned their saluted. "I suppose that you are Gunnery Sergeant Gary Johnson and Sergeant Major Edward Chen? From Harvest?" "Yes, sir!" the Sergeants replied. The Spartan did a headcount. "Eighteen," he said. "That's all. Come on, follow me. There is a transition platform that will lead us to the bridge. We must go ASAP, before that Cruiser do the Navy more damage."

The soldiers and the Dreadnought ran for the platform. In a few seconds, they are on the bridge.


Gary and his squad escorted the machine to the Eagle. Escort was the right word - the Dreadnought requires guidance, especially during this mission, ONI's Smart AIs no longer guides the machine. Gary must control it from now on until the mission finishes. 

As the marines boarded the Eagle, Gary contacted Edward, who was with his squad and the Spartan, waiting for Gary's signal to launch their pods and land on the Super Cruiser. To Gary's relief,  the pods and the Eagle have active camouflage. Which means they probably will survive the landing.

"Edward? We are clear and ready for launch." Gary said. "Roger that." replied Edward. "Come on you jarheads. Let's completed this mission." Edward told his squad.

"Steady, everyone!" Gary told the marines. "Launch!" the Eagle and the drop pods speeded towards the Super Cruiser.

"Be careful!" Gary told everyone. "Com silence from now on." He received 19 green acknowledgement lights. He clicked off the com and spoke quietly. "Good luck," he told them.



       Carson Woo, May 22nd 2011