Sierra Two Two: Chapter 4 [Updated: 19 JUL 2010]

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Sierra Two Two: Chapter 4 [Updated: 19 JUL 2010]

Postby Cralis on Fri 02 Apr 2010 19:35

21 AUG 2086 ~1645 (local): The Captain’s Ward, SUN Pendleton

After the meeting Captain Harding retreated to the Captain’s Ward to update his log and update his notes. After writing the details he felt were most important, he instructed the ship’s computer to attach recordings of the meeting to his notes and save them. He was working on a schedule and had instructed Lieutenant Commander Andrey to bring him the ambassador in thirty minutes. He felt the Captain’s Ward would be a more comfortable place for meeting the ambassador, and it was constantly guarded in the event the ambassador got out of control
Glancing at the time, Captain Harding finished making his update. He expected no more than five or six minutes until the ambassador was to arrive. Lieutenant Commander Andrey had tracked down the ambassador and found him at his console in his quarters and left a status update with the computer that they were on the way. Harding only had enough time to go over the ‘what’ and ‘why’ of what he was going to say.

The truth is that I need his support. The Ambassador is authorized to create treaties and negotiate other agreements on behalf of the Solar Union. Without his signature the Solar Union is not obligated to uphold any agreements made. Captain Harding looked the timeline of the meeting on his display. He is already upset, and I’m not sure I can tell him without making it worse.

The dual tweet of the hatch’s alert interrupted his thoughts. Captain Harding stood as he responded. “Enter.”

Lieutenant Andrey marched in and stepped to the right of his desk and stood at attention, while Ambassador Kusari curtly stepped up just behind her, centered on the Captain’s desk, and glared at Captain Harding. His faced radiated annoyance more than anything else, and a sullen anger at being disturbed and demanded upon.

“Ambassador Kusari, as requested” said Lieutenant Commander Andrey, as she saluted.

Captain Harding considered ordering her to stay, but that would be unfair. The ship’s computer would record the meeting so he didn’t need a witness. It would be very uncomfortable to force someone of her rank to stay for the boxing match that he expected. Instead, after saluting, he gave her the choice. “Lieutenant Commander, would you like to stay and offer your expert opinion?”

“Thank you sir, but I need to check on the analytical team. They are observing the movements of people and armies in the old nations on the planet. Apparently there is quite a bit going on in the capital cities.”

“Very well. Carry on.”

Quick on her heels, she spun around and bolted out of the room. Captain Harding turned to the ambassador. “Ambassador, I apologize for taking you from your work. Please, sit. I need to update you on what has happened while you’ve been occupied.”

Kusari opened his mouth slightly as if he was going to immediately respond, but then sat down and leaned forward to rest his elbows on his knees and clasp his hands together. He started in a sarcastic tone. “I can’t wait to hear what your team has done to damage our negotiations, Captain. To be honest, I have been drafting a report to the Foreign Relations Cabinet in direct anticipation of a swift response to my earlier complaints about the sabotage of my mission.”

Captain Harding leaned back a little, tilting his head slightly as he took in Kusari’s body language and demeanor. He obviously felt he was in the right, and that he couldn’t lose, no matter the setbacks he suffered during negotiations. But something wasn’t right with the Ambassador. He seemed almost…nervous.

“Ambassador, if I understand the events of our last negotiations, as it were, your job just got much easier.”

Ambassador Kusari’s eyes widened and looked slightly left and right as he processed the sentence. Then his eyes narrowed and his face became bleak. It was pretty clear he was thinking the worst.

“What did you do to them Captain?” He started to ask. “You didn’t kill them did you?”

“Ambassador Jun Kusari. While I understand you have a deep mistrust of the navy, the fact remains that we are professionals and that is insulting.”

Kusari just stared at Harding, barely blinking, and obviously waiting. Captain Harding grunted and nodded his head in self-annoyance before returning his gaze to Kusari. “It appears that the Lercana has had, perhaps since the original civil war, a plan to retake each of the provinces by supplanting a new leader if the old leader were to suddenly die or disappear.”

Ambassador Kusari had instinctively looked down when Captain Harding stared at him. It took a few seconds, but suddenly he jolted and looked up, clearly with a broken chain of thought. It was easy to see his facial expression melt away as the implications dawned on him. He stood and leaned forward on the desk and talked in a much quieter tone.

“Are you telling me, Captain Harding, that your plan to kidnap all of the leaders may have resulted in the Lercana supplanting every single government?”

“I am saying, Ambassador, that his son may have carried out that plan. Yes.” Captain Harding adjusted to sit up further and leaned forward into the ambassador, hoping to crowd his space and make him uncomfortable. “And if true, would mean that we are negotiating with a single empire going into peace instead of 5 separate nations at war.”

Ambassador Kusari slumped back into the chair and ran his hand through his short hair. Then he looked up at the ceiling. His face radiated annoyance at being crowded but the emotion relented. Captain Harding knew that Kusari felt the military was always wrong, but perhaps this time he realized that he, the Captain, was right.

Still staring upward, Kusari whispered, “And how do we know that this will hold?”

Captain Harding sat back again to give the appearance of giving the ambassador space and said in a much stronger voice, “The Lercana says that since he has probably been assumed dead he will return to his son, who will now be Lercana. He wants to return with a preliminary treaty in hand and assert himself as ambassador to the Solar Union. He believes his son will agree since there will be no challenge to his ascension to the throne. He wants you to negotiate the terms.”

Kusari sat upright and subconsciously straightened himself and his garments. “I see.”

Captain Harding let him straighten up, agitate, and look around. He knew that the ambassador was thinking and he didn’t want to square off until he had gathered both his thoughts and his composure. The implication that the ambassador might still be necessary to the negotiations obviously struck a chord with his ego. Just as it appeared the ambassador was going to turn this into an awkward moment and try to ditch the conversation, he spoke.

“I don’t like what you have done and my reports will reflect the fact that I think we’ve dealt with the Soffran underhandedly. But Captain Harding,” he shifted as if still uncomfortable, “it is my estimation that pure luck has caused your actions to make made my job easier. And you haven’t told me anything that will solve the dispute on whether the Soffran have a socialist government. “

He paused and looked to the side for a moment. “Or, at least, that the Soffran governments have the appearance of some form of socialist structure.”

“Ambassador, you do realize that we have built our own reports and witness accounts of what has happened? Colonel Eir has built an impressive report on what he thinks of their government, military, society, physiology, and psychology. Those reports have recently been sent back to SUN H.Q. via mercury drone. Are you prepared to defend your observations against ours?”

Ambassador Kusari suddenly looked pale. “You…did…what?” The ambassador’s voice was starting to get elevated. “ALL OF THOSE REPORTS WERE TO GO THROUGH ME!” As he raised his voice he became flush with anger.

The sudden change from whispered mumbling to shouting would have caught any non-military personnel by surprise. But every branch of the military has boot camp and training schools where the instructors rigorously abuse, manipulate, and prepare the recruits and cadets for anything. At Captain Harding’s rank and level of experience he was the one who did this to subordinates, and it made him angry when someone not in his chain of command felt they could manipulate him by doing the same. It was especially annoying considering that the whole purpose of this meeting was to invite the ambassador to participate in the expected treaty negotiations…essentially treating him like there was nothing wrong.

“That is enough.” Captain Harding’s voice was cutting, and his face turned to the pure steel of a combat experienced officer. “I brought you in here to mend our disagreements and bring you back into the process. Don’t you dare presume that you control any part of this mission. You are here as a subject matter expert and if you want to participate past this meeting you will not forget that.”

Captain Harding continued to focus his iron gaze on Ambassador Kusari. The ambassador stared back in defiance for a few long seconds and then looked away. The ambassador seemed both annoyed and worried, and it was suddenly clear that he was used to getting his way. It was clear that he didn’t have a lot of mental endurance. It seemed contradictory to his record crediting him with a particularly difficult negotiation back on Earth, and begged to ask how he got this assignment. But the ambassador was still a negotiator.

“Forgive me Captain,” Kusari begin, “I did not mean to presume. Let us focus on the task at hand.”

Something had changed. Captain Harding could see that the ambassador’s demeanor had altered as if he suddenly became a different person. It was almost as if everything just became right in the ambassador’s world. The previous emotional roller coaster was professionally disturbing, but this sudden change and the fact that it held through the rest of the meeting…well that was creepy.

Ambassador Kusari was still quiet and calm when Colonel Eir joined them and gave his detailed analysis on the meeting. Captain Harding didn’t know why, but the ambassador was obviously unstable and this change was bound to have consequences for the mission.

22 AUG 2086 1000: Briefing Room 4, SUN Pendleton

At the request of Lercana Murchan, the Preco were again gathered the next day. The Lercana was a little upset that Gunny Morris would not allow them to meet in complete seclusion, but finally agreed to allow Sergeant Grellawan to stand watch inside the room. Intel had the ship’s computer recording and translating everything said, so Gunny Morris relented to the arrangement. Every 30 minutes Sergeant Grellawan would contact Gunny over comms to check-in.

Lance Corporal Soma had come with the four petty officers that escorted the Preco from the brig. He had happened to be on duty when the escort duty was assigned and Gunny Morris took advantage of his presence. He ordered two of the two petty officers and Lance Corporal Soma to stand guard outside the briefing room with Corporal Durn. Corporal Durn was a diminutive Marine, standing only 1.6 meters tall. Her shoulder-length black hair complimented her sharp facial features, although at the moment it was pinned up under her uniform cover. Solar Union Marine Corps regulations considered the passageways of a starship to be “outdoors” and thus covers were required at all times. Despite her petite size she was obviously strong-willed and imposing. She remained by the hatch at attention, and without saying a word demanded the same from Lance Corporal Soma.

Gunny Morris patrolled the nearby corridors to keep the area clear. He didn’t expect any trouble from naval or civilian personnel, but he was cautious to a fault. Deck 5 was a living deck, but the forward end of corridor B was briefing rooms, a gym, and a few miscellaneous facilities. Every 5 minutes Gunny would walk by the double hatches to the briefing room and every half an hour he made an appearance when Sergeant Grellawan made his check-in. It was obvious that the check-ins were interrupting the meeting because the Lercana would stop talking and the Preco would sit and stare at Sergeant Grellawan when he started talking, no matter how quietly he whispered. Just after 3 hours Sergeant Grellawan opened the hatch and the Lercana stepped out.

“Corporal Durn, please call for an escort. The Lercana wishes to return to his room for a brief period.”

Surprised at the decorum, Durn clicked her bone mic. Training made it second nature to all Marines to ‘click’ the mic by adjusting their jaw. As a bonus it was almost imperceptible.
“Gunny Morris, Corporal Durn.”

“Go ahead” Gunny’s deep voiced echoed in Durn’s implanted earphone.

“The Lercana is ready to be escorted back to his room.”

“Stand by - I will be there in two minutes.”

For two minutes Corporal Durn stood in the open hatch watching the Preco sit heads hanging. Nobody spoke. They didn’t seem to move or look around much, and the Lercana stood just outside the hatch next to Lance Corporal Soma, looking straight ahead with his arms folded. When Gunny Morris came into view the Lercana stepped out and nodded.

“Ready?” Gunny asked.

“I am,” the translated voice said in Gunny’s ear. Lance Corporal Soma had forgotten about the translation delay and was startled, looking confused at the Lercana until the translation came through.

Gunny Morris waved him ahead, “After you Lercana Murchan.”

“Gunny?” Corporal Durn interrupted, “the Lercana asked to let the Preco think and talk about what he proposed. He is asking for… I think about twenty minutes. Sergeant Grellawan wants to know what to do with them.”

Lercana Murchan started down the passageway and forced Gunny Morris to speak while trotting backwards.“ Then let them. I’ll contact Sergeant G and tell him to continue monitoring.”

Corporal Durn looked at Lance Corporal Soma. “Um, I’m staying, so you’re staying. I guess they should be done in thirty.”

22 AUG 2086 ~1320 (local): Lercana Murchan’s Temporary Quarters, Deck 7, SUN Pendleton

Gunny Morris had spoken with the Lercana and found out that he wanted the Preco to talk for about 20 Soffran time units. Roughly translated, the time units measured out to about 2 Standard Earth Hours. The Lercana was hungry and apparently pleased with himself, so he didn’t give Morris very much information about what was going on. Morris was just leaving the Lercana’s quarters and making sure that Corporal Durn was outside when Sergeant Grellawan called over comms.

“Gunny Morris here.”

At what sounded like a whisper, Sergeant Grellawan said “Gunny, they are talking in a different language, or dialect, or something. We don’t have a translation for it.”

Gunny Morris closed and squinted his eyes and pushed at the folds in his brow. Why couldn’t Colonel Eir or Major Nessur worry about this? Intel was bound to be analyzing the recordings from the meeting, but Major Nessur had been in his quarters for the last 4 or 5 hours. ‘Take care of it Gunny’ Major Nessur had said when briefing Gunny about the guard detail, ‘you don’t need me for this.’

True, thought Morris, but I don’t want the responsibility either. “Sergeant G, just let them continue. Colonel Eir is listening to the recordings and if he determines out something is wrong he will contact us.”

“Aye, Aye Gunny.”

Gunny Morris thought about contacting the Colonel or Major Nessur and making sure they were aware of this detail. But he knew that intel would probably already have contacted Colonel Eir – that is, if he wasn’t already listening in. Gunny Morris shook his head and started making his way back to the briefing room two decks above.

22 AUG 2086 ~1330 (local): Deck 7, Passageway Junction B120

Major Nessur was headed aft from elevator 4 on his way from intel when he ran into Gunny Morris.

“Sir?” Gunny stopped and asked.

“Gunny, I couldn’t sleep. The tattoos were bothering me...” Major Nessur trailed off for a moment. “Gunny, I did some looking into the information we have on the Soffran. I noticed that Precent He’lason had some odd tattoos on the front of his neck. I seemed to recall them and it took me a bit of searching through the data to find them. Remember the trouble you had capturing him? I think he is a master at some form of Soffran martial arts.”

“Does anyone else know this sir?”

“I don’t think so. I just spoke with Colonel Eir and he did not make the connection, nor had anyone in the intel staff that was present. The references were very vague, more of a historical note about the ancient traditions of the bah-tee or something like that. Deal is that the bah-tee was a violent assassins’ order that bordered on sociopaths by our definitions. After speaking with Colonel Eir, I was just on my way to speak to the Lercana abou…”

The Marine’s earphones suddenly blasted into their ears. “All hands, this is Colonel Eir. Security breach on deck 5, B74, Briefing Room 5. The Soffran prisoners have escaped confinement.”
The Officer of the Deck followed up only seconds later. “Deck 5 is locked down, all personnel on deck 5 report to your section chiefs.”

“Major Nessur, Colonel Eir.”

“Go ahead Colonel” Nessur responded.

"Son of a ..." Gunny started to say, but Nessur didn’t hear him finish as he was already flying down the passageway at a full run. Here on Deck 7 there was more foot traffic, but Gunny was determined to reach the nearest elevator. Nessur had to break into a run to keep up. Gunny Morris was continuously shouting “Make a hole!” and “Outta the way! Move move move!” and pushing personnel aside as he ran through the hall. As a Marine Officer he was authorized to carry his sidearm at all times and did not need to go to the armory first like most of the security teams would. As part of the security Gunny Morris had already drawn a sidearm from the armory, like the rest of the naval and Marine security.

As he was running, the Major was suddenly being briefed by Colonel Eir on what was happening.
“Major, we overheard the Soffran talking excitedly and rapidly and we were trying to run an interpretation program on the new dialect. In the middle of the exchange there was a sudden commotion and your sergeant let out some choice words before what sounded like him hitting the ground. About five seconds later the hatch opened and we overheard Precent He’lason telling your other Marines to stand down or he would kill your sergeant. After they left the room they left your Marine and we lost audio. Internal sensors show them moving forward in passageway B.”

Major Nessur thought quickly. He and the Gunny had entered elevator 4, going up the decks to passageway B just aft of the briefing room. As soon as the hatches opened both men shot out of the elevator and down the corridor. Gunny Morris was forty feet ahead of him and only a minute from the briefing room. He received a chirp informing him that another comm was incoming, and he figured it was the officer of the deck or one of the Marines. He could see Gunny Morris grasping his lapel mic and he could hear him voicing commands while running with his drawn sidearm.

Breathing heavily, Major Nessur practically yelled at his bone mic. “Colonel, direct secu…rity port and star…starboard. Coming from…elevator 4!”

Like a machine, he moved to the left of the corridor and Gunny Morris moved down the right, both holding their pistols at the ready.

Major Nessur could see the digital camouflage on several legs sticking out of the frame of the briefing room hatchway. Gunny advanced on the hatchway and swept through the room before kneeling by his Marines. All three of the Marines and both Petty Officers he left here ten minutes prior were all unconscious.

As Nessur reached the hatch he swept the room and looked down the corridor. Gunny Morris had knelt next to Sergeant Grellawan and Corporal Durn. Nessur grabbed Gunny’s shoulder to get his attention, and when he had it he pointed his sidearm down the passageway forward.

“That should be the direction they went.”

“Yes sir, but hold on for the corpsman. Security should be able to block the Soffran in.” Gunny was obviously pre-occupied making sure his Marines were still alive. “It looks like Soma and the Petty Officers were shot with stunners” he muttered, almost as if he was speaking to himself.

Major Nessur looked around. Only the Marines were armed with pistols, but he was sure the Petty Officers had been armed with stunners. While not a spectacular armament, it made the Soffran a little more dangerous. While Gunny was checking the Marines, Major Nessur checked the Petty Officers. Both were alive. He looked at Gunny Morris.

“Major, our Marines are alive. I think they were just knocked unconscious. Sergeant Grellawan has bruising from a strike on his neck and the rest have been shot with a stunner.” Gunny turned Sergeant Grellawan’s head and pointed out the bruising. “It looks like you may be right about Precent He’lason sir.”

“Maybe that is a weak point in Soffran physiology?” Nessur offered.

“I don’t know.” Gunny was about to say something else when two corpsman and an escorting security rating ran up the hallway towards them. As the contingent arrived the corpsman starting treating the injured personnel.

“Let’s go!” he shouted, as he leaped to his feet and started forward.

Major Nessur was still listening to comm reports on the location of the Soffran escapees, noting that they were still moving forward in passageway B.

“Gunny, just go straight. They are still moving up this passageway. They just passed frame B50 after attempting to activate the forward elevators. They are almost to the end of passageway B and security reports passageways A and C are covered up to frame 10.”

“We need to crowd them in sir!” Gunny Morris yelled as he ramped up to a full run. Major Nessur found that he couldn’t agree more.

Somewhere on Deck 5, Passageway B, forward of frame 50

Precent He’lason was losing his patience. Precin Sonarus and Precent Keelus had agreed that they couldn’t let the Lercana ruin their honor, their pride, and their nations. Each was willing to put their differences aside long enough to escape this blasted place. His combat training had enabled him to quickly kill the soldier guarding them, and he bluffed the others into believing he would surrender him alive if they dropped their weapons. He retained one of the odd box-like rifles while Sonarus had the other. Keelus had picked up one of the smaller sidearms.

He’lason recognized that the hallway was ending. “Sonarus, we are running out of hallway. I can see the end up there.”

She sneered at him, “I told you that we needed to move to a different hallway. The aircraft hangars were large enough that I’m sure they can be accessed from any level.”

Keelus snidely clicked at her, an insult, and said “I don’t know how I agreed to this. We obviously can’t go up or down these levels and unless the hangar is on this level we will be trapped. How can you be sure where we are?”

He’lason scowled and thought for a moment. “If we can’t escape, then at least we can eliminate the Lercana before turning on each other. Keeping moving quickly.”

Both of them glared at him. “Very amusing. You’ll be dead by the second shot He’lason. You were never as good as you think you are” commented Sonarus.

Still bickering, they continued to the end and then turned left. As they reached the next junction He’lason looked around the side and saw security personnel from the solars several junctions down. They immediately started shouting something he couldn’t understand.

Come and get me, he thought as he readied the odd rifle.

22 AUG 2086 ~1330: Deck 5, Passageway B, Junction B30

Gunny Morris could see the end of the passageway and to him it was obvious that the Soffran had moved down one of the side passageways. Just as he was passing junction B30 he heard the familiar sizzle-zap noise of weapons. He motioned to Major Nessur. The Major responded.

“Gunny, security is reporting contact in passageway A forward of junction A20. We have more security coming up behind us.”

Gunny Morris heard the report as well. “Sir, let’s continue down this passageway to the end and see if we can cut them off from behind.”

“Go!” Nessur responded.

As Gunny jogged the last 20 meters he quickly checked the port and starboard passageways at junction B20, careful to point his sidearm down each as he scanned them. He directed a security team coming up from behind him to move to the A20 and C20 junctions and help the teams holding those passageways.

Upon reaching junction B10, he stopped opposite the port passageway and quickly glanced down each passageway. He spotted one of the Soffran down the port passageway huddling at the corner of junction A10. Using hand signals he alerted the Major to what he saw. Security had been reporting an exchange of weapons fire with the Soffran in the passageway, but the Soffran were only shooting to keep heads down. Suddenly one jumped around the corner and was running straight at Gunny’s position.

The standard issue P44 sidearm is a lightweight, battery fed, select fire laser pistol. The battery slid into the grip like the old slug shooting pistol magazines, and it was good for up to three dozen shots. The pistol fired a quarter-second long burst of millisecond laser pulses. The full burst left a bright white trail through the air that pulsed for a few milliseconds and cycled three times per second. All you had to do was hold the weapon on target. Gunny Morris had qualified as an expert pistol marksman since first being allowed to qualify as a Sergeant eight years prior. He often wondered how anyone could miss with the weapon. It wasn’t that shooters actually missed, it was that they didn’t hold their aim steady enough to allow enough of the burst to hit the same spot on the target to do enough damage. A “near miss” was when less than a quarter burst was held on the target, and it could burn through unprotected flesh. But it will rarely will a “near miss” burn deep enough to cripple a human target. However, a full quarter-second burst can burn off or explode limbs.

Gunny Morris held his P44 in a kneeling shooting stance and leaned out in to the passageway just enough to get a shot. He aimed dead center of the running Soffran and pulled the trigger. The Soffran saw him and tried to shoot but was swinging the pistol and the burst was wasted all over the bulkhead. Gunny’s shot was held on target and burned a hole through the Soffran’s chest. He then recognized that it was the female, Precin Sonarus, and she made a frightful screech as she collapsed into a quivering mass on the deck.

Major Nessur aimed around the corner and yelled “You have nowhere to go! Surrender your weapons and lie down in the middle of the passageway.” Nessur silently commed the computer and had it repeat his order through the ship’s central speaker system, but translated into Soffran.

A pistol appeared around the corner of the junction and fired a laser burst. The burst burned a white stripe in the air, aimed blindly down the passageway. Ironically his shot passed mere centimeters from the Soffran huddling in the very same corner.

Major Nessur made a return shot that struck the bulkhead half a meter above the cowering Soffran. The laser made a pop as it superheated the polymer surface and caused a splattering of liquid plastic. The cowering Soffran howled in fear and then leaped up, running blindly around the junction corner. Another shot was heard, followed by screaming, and a few more shots co-joined with what sounded like laughter.

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Precent He’lason took pleasure in the fact that he was able to kill Precent Keelus. That toa-ampa was a painful opponent who was skilled enough in tactics to make things difficult, yet was such a coward that it made his skin crawl with hate. While his main fight was against Precin Sonarus’s armies, Keelus would often make surgical strikes on the border of Josalan that were costly. Now he was dead.

Too bad I won’t live long enough to really enjoy it, thought He’lason.

He knew he was trapped in one of the corners of this infernal ship. None of the doors would open for him and he couldn’t leave the strut in the wall next to the junction. The humans down the hallway kept taking shots at him when he peered around the struts. They didn’t seem to be highly skilled shooters. Maybe it was the weapon? After shooting the solar’s weapon a few times he was able to adjust, but it still seemed inaccurate and didn’t do any damage to the walls he tried to blast through. It seemed useless compared to the slug throwers he used back home. But these rifles did affect the guards he shot at the meeting room, even if he couldn’t figure out how to make it damage anything else.

Suddenly he heard new voice behind him. He thought he recognized the bark of the soldier yelling down the hall. The distance between the corner he was taking cover behind, and the junction with those soldiers, was a distance of only a few maha. With nowhere else to go, He’lason decided to change strategies and count on his agility and training to get him close enough to the soldiers to kill them. He only heard a few voices and hoped that only a few were waiting for him.

I might not escape, but I won’t be the only one who dies today.

--------------------

Gunny Morris was leaning around the corner to see if he could spot any movement. Major Nessur was directing the security teams with his bone mic, but in the excitement he was talking out loud and Gunny heard Colonel Eir’s name a few times. Two armed naval personnel, a naval Lieutenant JG and a security force Petty Officer were creeping up the passageway and Gunny Morris motioned for them to stand behind him. The Lieutenant pointed towards the corner and Gunny just nodded. Major Nessur was starting to say something when movement caught Gunny’s eye.

--------------------

Precent He’lason was very agile and extremely strong by human standards. His longer arms and legs gave him an acrobatic agility no human could match. Starting from a crouch he literally jumped to the far wall of the hall and run up the side. Fluidly continuing into some form of rolling flip, he pushed from the ceiling and sailed back across the hallway and into a run down the opposing wall. Reaching the junction by the time he hit the floor, he could feel small burns rake across his body as the soldiers attempted to kill him.

--------------------

Gunny Morris saw the Precent leap across the passageway. Already at the ready, he flipped his pistol’s selection to ‘continuous burst’ mode and attempted to hold his pistol on target while each quarter-second laser burst fired. The Precent was moving too quickly and he couldn’t keep his aim steady on a single point of the Precent’s body as it flew through the air. Gunny’s pistol loosed two bursts and was starting a third when the Precent reached Major Nessur. The Major was trying to bring his pistol up to aim when the Precent grabbed the Major’s arm, stripped his pistol away, and made an odd upward knife strike to the Major’s head. Before Major Nessur hit the ground the Precent was already leaping through the air towards Gunny Morris and the security personnel behind him.

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As he jumped towards the remaining soldiers, Precent He’lason fired the odd rifle he was holding. The shot sailed over the front soldier’s head and hit the one standing behind him. He’lason smiled as the human when down like a plok bird in a net. But he was paying too much attention to firing the weapon and overshot his jump, and landed against the soldier he was originally aiming for. Kicking him to the floor, he made several quick strikes to the head of the other soldier behind him. Finally, the Precent made a backwards spinning jump to face the last opponent who was now lying in the hallway.

--------------------

After nearly being shot by the stunner, Gunny Morris dropped to a combat stance and was leveling his pistol when the Precent collided with him and kicked him off his feet. As he fell to the ground he made a side roll to try and get behind the Precent. But as he rolled he lost his grip on his pistol and it flung out into the passageway. He couldn’t help the thought that flooded his mind: Dammit, this guy is fast. I don’t know if I can beat him!

Gunny tried to making a low sweeping kick to knock the Precent off his feet. The Precent’s back jump cleared the kick with ease, and Gunny felt the Precent strike him in the head with a low foot strike. Morris had barely gotten to his knees before he went down on his back from the second kick. Disoriented, Morris felt the Precent jump onto his chest. Thinking fast, Morris brought his feet up and struck the Precent in the back. Using the momentary stun to his advantage, Morris used his feet to grab the Precent and flip him a few meters down the passageway.

He shook his head and his vision cleared enough to see the Precent flying through the air at him in another spectacular leap. “Hell no!” Morris barked as he reached down to his web belt. Just as the Precent landed on his chest again, he struck Morris in the head and knocked him off his feet. Disoriented a second time, Morris instinctively drew his Ka-Bar out of its sheath and thrust it up into the warm body mass that was now sitting on his chest. A final twist and the weight was gone.

With a small shriek of pain, Precent He’lason twisted off of Gunny Morris and stood. Morris once again shook his head and cleared his vision. He saw the Precent shakily standing in the passageway. The Precent drew the massive knife out of his lower body, ignoring the purplish blood flowing from the wound. He stared at the knife, flipping it over as if he was examining something he’d never seen before. He looked up at Morris… and then the back of his head exploded.

Gunny shifted his body up to his elbows and looked at the mass of the Precent’s body lying next to him. He reached out and grabbed his Ka-Bar, now laying on the deck, and looked up over the body as he stood. When he looked up there was Major Nessur, standing against the bulkhead with his pistol at the ready.

“Damn Gunny,” he said, “does the Captain know you carry that?”

Continue to Chapter 5
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Cralis
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Re: Sierra Two Two (part 4)

Postby Cralis on Fri 09 Apr 2010 13:38

Please don't be afraid to comment, good or bad. I haven't written a story in more than five years, and before then I only wrote a couple. I appreciate any constructive criticism I can get so I can improve!
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Re: Sierra Two Two (part 4)

Postby krenshala on Fri 09 Apr 2010 22:06

Cralis wrote:Please don't be afraid to comment, good or bad. I haven't written a story in more than five years, and before then I only wrote a couple. I appreciate any constructive criticism I can get so I can improve!

Ya left a few grammar errors! :D

I like it. Can't wait until you have time to write the next part. ;)
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Re: Sierra Two Two (part 4)

Postby Cralis on Fri 09 Apr 2010 23:19

krenshala wrote:
Cralis wrote:Please don't be afraid to comment, good or bad. I haven't written a story in more than five years, and before then I only wrote a couple. I appreciate any constructive criticism I can get so I can improve!

Ya left a few grammar errors! :D

I like it. Can't wait until you have time to write the next part. ;)


By all means fire a PM to me and let me know. I already did one major revision to the first three parts, and I edit for grammar/spelling errors if/when I find/find out about them.

In fact, if you haven't read the first three parts since I posted the fourth, you might want to go back and read them. Parts 2 and 3 added a bit of content that explains and affects part 4.
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Re: Sierra Two Two: Chapter 4

Postby BillW on Mon 03 May 2010 05:35

Good story. I too am looking forward to reading more. :)
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Re: Sierra Two Two: Chapter 4

Postby Cralis on Mon 03 May 2010 13:57

LOL took you long enough to read it :-)
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Re: Sierra Two Two: Chapter 4

Postby BillW on Mon 03 May 2010 18:19

Cralis wrote:LOL took you long enough to read it :-)


True, I am behind on my reading in general and Starfire in particular. I am working on getting caught up.
IOW, expect to see more posts on old topics. ;)
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Re: Sierra Two Two: Chapter 4

Postby krenshala on Tue 04 May 2010 21:19

BillW wrote:
Cralis wrote:LOL took you long enough to read it :-)


True, I am behind on my reading in general and Starfire in particular. I am working on getting caught up.
IOW, expect to see more posts on old topics. ;)

We have no complaints with more posts, even if they are on old topics. ;)
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