Shriek! The elevator came to a screeching halt. I hit the door button but nothing happened. I worked my fingers between the doors and pulled them apart but they grinded rebelliously against my force. I managed to get my arm through then my whole body. Finally, I dragged Marta out and rested.
Miles ran to me, “Glad to see you could make it. Come on we have to go to the blockade.”
“What about Marta?” I pointed to her.
“Wake her up,” he insisted.
“I can’t she’s out. An artillery shell exploded near her, and she has been out since then.”
“Aw man, now they are shelling us, we really have to move. Bring Marta along.”
I hoisted Marta up and slung her arm over my shoulder and mine over her’s and followed Miles to the barricade. He called a corpsman and one came running.
“What happened?” he asked looking at Marta.
“A shell exploded over us,” I told him.
“And you’re not knocked out?” he gave me a look.
I thought what to say, “Hey, someone has to stay awake to get the job done.”
He smiled, “Good answer.”
“Yo Corr,” Hayden called, “get down here.”
“Go ahead, she’ll be fine,” the corpsman told me.
“Yep, coming,” I shouted back taking to my feet and running towards him.
I made it to him and he said, “Alright, I need you to watch this barricade while I go and check on the others.”
“Yes sir, you can count on me.”
“Good, I’ll leave the corpsman and the other O.G.G. here to give you a hand. Just shoot anything that isn’t friendly.”
“Oh, and I won’t be back for awhile so don’t count on me to give you a hand,” he looked at Miles, “Come on, let’s go.”
They were gone and the other O.G.G. walked up to me, “Well, looks like I’m taking orders from a kid now,” he chuckled. I didn’t reply so he continued, “My name’s Justin, what’s yours?”
“Corr,” I walked to the middle of the barrier of wooden crates and boxes.
“So, you’re part of the new Legionnaires, super soldiers?”
“That’s right,” I confirmed.
“Man, I bet that would be cool.”
“Not really,” I replied, “right now I’m just a normal soldier.”
“Yeah, right now, just wait,” he assured.
The corpsman walked over to us, “The name’s Eric, and you’re Corr right?”
“The girl will be fine, all she needs is rest. I still can’t figure out how you aren’t out.”
“I don’t know,” I replied peering down the open corridoor that stretched far beyond the blockade.
“God’s grace, that’s all I can figure,” Eric answered his own question.
I nodded, “Yeah, it probably was.”
“Well, whoever he is, hope his grace hold out, we got rebels inbound.”
As I looked at the insurgents charging toward us, I thought, I need to tell Justin who God was for this could be his last battle. But I didn’t for fear of Justin thinking I was weird. I pulled my mind back to the fight.
I took over, “Eric, get Marta out of the line of fire. Justin, move down the barricade a few yards then open fire once they come within range. We have to hold, for if they get past us, they get Drakka-norr.”
I stepped up to the barricade and rested my S.A.W. on the wood slash steel barrier. The rebels passed some abandoned crates and they came within firing range, “I’ll give the order to open up!”
“What! We can hit ’em now!” Justin protested.
“We can’t afford to miss.” Seconds ticked by as the rebels ran closer, “Let them have it!” we unleashed a wall of lead into the charging mass and they were cut down. After the first wave, they got smart and used the old crates, boxes, and barrels to their advantage. As I took cover and reloaded my weapon, Justin was hit and he fell to the ground, dead, a nasty wound in his face. I suddenly felt sick at the sight of his face and the fact that I didn’t tell him who God was. It was all my fault that I let him die eternally. As I chambered a round, I had to bring my mind back to the battle.
I fired a few quick bursts then prepped a grenade. I tossed it behind some barrels. An insurgent picked up the frag grenade and was about to throw it back, when, Boom! It exploded in his hand. The explosion chain reacted with another grenade on another rebel; this amplified the damage. I pulled my head down behind the barricade during the explosion. Suddenly, everything fell quiet, everything except the ringing in my ears. I took a peek to see what was left of the rebel attack. Those that were able to move retreated back out of the tunnel.
Eric came running and shouting, “Yeah kid, you did it!”
The thought of Justin, eternally burning in Hell, still haunted me, “Yeah, I guess I did.” My words were not full of emotion as they would have been. I kept telling myself that even if I did tell him about our Lord that he might not have accepted him. But I would just as soon contradict myself by thinking that I could have just let him know and he might have made the right decision.
Eric gave my shoulder a squeeze and shook it. He looked down at Justin, “Aw man, that’s bad.”
“I let him die,” I said.
“What, the rebels did that; you had no control,” he gave me a puzzled look.
“No, I let him die eternally, forever,” I cast my face downward.
“You can’t save them all,” he told me.
“I could have tried. I could have given him a chance for eternal life.”
Eric reassured, “I’m sure you’ll get another chance, I mean the war isn’t over yet. When the time does come again, you’ll make the right choice.”
“I pray I do,” I looked up from Justin’s butchered face.
“Got to move on, but that doesn’t mean you can’t learn from your past.”
“I know,” I stated.
“Come on, help me drag him out of here.”
Roar! “What the freak was that?” I demanded.
Eric dropped Justin’s arm, “I have no idea.” his expression was scared.
I heard the sound of claws scraping across stone echo though the tunnels. Then I saw what was making the sound. A whole legion of white, scaly, demon-possessed humanoids.
“What in the…” Eric gasped in disbelief
“Get ready!” They swarmed toward us with great speed.
I aimed at one as did Eric. They came at us faster than we had expected, for once they were within range, they soon were nearer than that, and we opened up much too late. I saw some of the creatures shred to pieces as our bullets hit them. We tried to keep as much lead flying as we could, but some of them made it to us.
One demon jumped over the barricade and tackled me to the ground. It thrust its head toward mine, fangs abare. I stopped the thing with my hands around its neck. The creature roared and thrashed around in an attempt to break free and finish me off.
“Hold on!” Eric ran toward me then kicked the thing off me.
I pulled my 45 caliber out and fired the rest of my magazine into it. The pistol ejected the last round and it sprung into the empty position, smoking. I had forgotten to reload after the confrontation with the rebels in the trenches. The white creature took a step towards me, then fell. Luckily, the last few shots were enough to quel the demonic creature.
I reloaded my side arm and rejoined Eric who was occupied with holding off the wave. As soon as I was standing up at the blockade again, I started laying into the evil wave. I glanced down to check how many rounds I had left in the belt I was using. I had about twenty left. That meant I would have to reload a few seconds later, and when that happened, they would be upon us.
Out of nowhere I heard, “Get down!” I looked behind me and dropped to the tunnel floor; it was Lucas with his Chain gun. The triple barreled weapon started up, Brrrrrrrr! Then, fifteen seconds later, it was over, “Woohoo, that’s how it’s done.”
“Just in time.” Eric got up, dropped his empty magazine from his MR-C, and replenished it with a fresh one. He walked over to Lucas, and they talked amongst themselves.
I got up and replaced my used belt with a full one. I looked at Lucas’s work. Nothing was left except little chunks of the white, scaly, things. Those things were nasty, just thinking about them and how close I came to having my throat bitten into by one made my skin crawl. I was thankful that the Lord had chosen to save me despite my failure with Justin.
“Ya did good, Corr,” Hayden surpised me.
“Oh, yes sir, only my best.”
“Cut that ’sir’ crap, you can call me Hayden, I prefer it.” I nodded and he continued, “You sure have proven yourself to me. Most men would have run at the sight of a Crightent.”
“Crightent, sir?” I asked looking up at him.
Hayden eyed me about the word ‘sir’, “They are those white demons you just fought.”
I heard a tired voice call, “It’s-it’s happening all over again.”
“What’s that?” I questioned as I leaped over the barricade and saw a dying rebel.
The rebel looked at me, “It’s happening all over again.”
“What is?” I asked aiming my weapon at him.
“Ah, filthy rebel,” Hayden came over and shot him, Bam! “We can’t spare doctors for wounded P.O.W.s.”
I looked up at Hayden, “What was he talking about?”
“Oh, just the whole Crightent thing.”
“You mean they have been here before?” I slung my S.A.W. over my shoulder.
“The Crightent is a sickness, ever since this star system has been settled Crightents have been here,” he holstered his pistol, “Now we have to follow the rebels.”
“What about the barricade?” I asked.
“Because you and the corpsman scared the insurgents crapless, they are in a quick fall back to the little town at the base of Drakka-norr, so they won’t be counter attacking anytime soon.” Hayden turned, “Let’s go!” he yelled.
Eric and Lucas vaulted over the barrier to follow us, “Where are Avery and Miles?”
“They are going to cover another route but we’ll meet in the town,” Hayden answered.
We ran out of the tunnels and into a small fire fight in the small bombed out village.
“Find some cover!” Hayden shouted.
We spread out and mixed with the O.G.G.s already engaged in the fight. I found a nice stone fence for my cover. I was in a perfect flanking position. This fence ran all the way to the insurgents’ machine gunners. I moved closer; and the sound of the dual RP-K became deafening. I crawled to the sand bags that the machine gun was behind. I saw the snow landing on the barrel of the RP-K and melting instantly.
I knew my enemy was there, I just couldn’t see him through the stone fence. This was it, I was going to whip around the fence and fire, Kabam! A sniper, most likely Avery, took care of the gunner. My ears began to ring violently.
Out of a ruined house, to my left, another rebel fired, Pow-ping! “Agh!” I was hit in the side of the head with a small arms round. Luckily, it hit the top of my helmet and grazed off. Now my whole head was ringing. I brought my weapon to my unguarded side and saw the insugent. He stared at me in disbelief that he didn’t kill me. Still on my belly I let out a short burst from my gun and the rebel quickly fell. The other rebels would soon be on top of me. I readied my bi-pod and popped up to place it on the fence.
I smiled at the site of the surprised rebels, B-B-B-B-Bam! B-B-B-Bam! Two quick bursts cut them down. The other rebels were discouraged at the slaughter of their fellow comrades. They dropped their weapons and held their hands over their heads. I could see the fear in their eyes as they stared at me helplessly. I was still looking down the sites of my weapon with my finger on the trigger. The blood thirsty creature inside of me siezed control, B-B-B-B-Bam! The last few rounds of my belt slipped through my S.A.W.
What had I done? I did it again. I thought about my actions as I slowly reloaded and chambered another round. I rested my chin on my fist on top of my weapon. I eyed the dead bodies, they were defenseless and I killed them. Hayden never said we couldn’t take unharmed prisoners. I sighed and got up. It would be hard for me, but I was going to try to hold back the demon within me that lusted for blood.
Eric came up to me, “Man you sure can fight.”
“Only when I have to,” I answered.
An O.G.G. coughed, “Corpsman!” we looked around and we heard the call again, “Corpsman.” We looked over the fence to find the wounded O.G.G.
“Easy boy,” Eric jumped over the fence.
“Stop the bleeding, agh!” he yelled.
“Calm down, you’re making it worse,” Eric told him.
“Man he’s banged up pretty bad,” I noted.
The soldier coughed up blood as Eric pleaded, “Corr,” he handed me a towel of some sort, “I need you to put pressure here.” he pointed to a hole in the O.G.G.’s stomach.
I leaped over the stone barrier and put my S.A.W. down. Then I put pressure on the wound. The towel/bandage quickly became drenched with blood as each heart beat gushed out more of the red liquid. His hand grabbed mine, “Eric, hurry,” I told him.
Eric was preoccupied with taking a bullet out from his chest area. “I’m trying to.” moments later he said, “Ah, come on, stay with me. What’s your name kid?” he asked the O.G.G.
“Devin,” he coughed, “Private Devin Marshall.”
“Good, You got a family, Devin?” he glanced at Devin’s face then back to his work.
“Yeah, my mom, dad, and little brother,” he panted, “I don’t want to die, sir.”
“Just relax.” Eric wrapped his chest with bandage that slowly became red, “You got a wife or girlfriend, eh Devin?” he closed his eyes, “Come on Devin, let me hear about that girl of yours.”
“I got a girlfriend,” he coughed more blood.
Eric looked at me and shook his head. I looked down at my hand that had now became stained with blood. “What’s her name?” he asked finishing wrapping his chest. Devin’s grip loosened on my hand and the blood stopped rushing from the hole in his stomach. Devin didn’t answer. “Come on Devin what’s her name?”
“Eric,” I quietly said.
“I know, I’m working fast as I can.”
“Eric,” I said louder.
He stopped working on his chest wound and looked at his face. He sighed, “Darn.”
“You tried your best,” I commented.
“It wasn’t enough,” he said cleaning his surgery tools with alcohol and cloth.
“People die in war and you can’t save them all.”
He gave me a weird look. I heard Hayden call, “G company, on me!” we ran up to him, “Alright, we’re taking back this town before day break which leaves us five hours. We must neutralize all artillery and eliminate all rebels you come in contact with. Oh, there are O.G.G.s out there also, find them and direct them back to Drakka-norr.”
“Wait, so you want us to find O.G.G.s and march them back to Drakka-norr?” Avery checked.
“Ah, that’s what I said,” Hayden replied eyeing him.
“I’m just making sure we’re on the same page.”
Hayden shook his head at Avery’s remark, “Alright, split up in teams. Miles and Avery, Lucas and me, and once the corpsman is finished working on that wounded, Corr and him. Lucas, you and I move straight up the middle.”
“Miles and Avery, you two take the right side. Corr, you will take the left. Now there are three artillery positions and each one of the groups should hit one.”
“Sir, are we going to be the only G.G. forces trying to take back the town? Won’t we be overwhelmed by the rebels?” Miles questioned.
“The rebel force in the town is unprepared and scattered about, so taking this town back shouldn’t be too hard for a small company, so let‘s move!” Hayden commanded.
The rest of G company ran off in their designated directions. Hayden took a step then turned back to me. “Corr, that stunt with the rebels, try not to let it happen again,” he patted me on the shoulder, “it wastes ammo.” Then he ran off after Lucas.
Eric joined me, “Well, what now?”
“Follow me, I’ll tell you our objectives on the way.”