Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Desert canyons of Praesitlyn
Chapter 9: Night Trap-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------//
Forward Command Post – Mygeeto Mission Clock 12:00 //
Hunter lay on the floor, still deep in sleep. Suddenly, the blackness faded out to white, and then focused back in on the battlefield of his dream. A mortar round exploded near his position. He looked behind him. His squad lay in the center of the blast radius. The battlefield turned white except for the area around his dieing squad mates. “NO!” he shouted. Storm stood up, his face was discombobulated, and walked over to Hunter. Max stood up too.
“You’ve got to find cover,” Max told him. “Because of you, the turrets have a lock on our position. Now we’re dead. You’re on your own, Hunter.”
“No,” Hunter whispered.
“Yes!” Storm shouted angrily. What did you think; you were dreaming? This is war!” Storm began to shake Hunter’s shoulders; his face still was unrecognizably human.
Hunter closed his eyes in misery, and he began to see something different. It was Storm, shaking him. Storm had his helmet on. “No,” Hunter whispered.
“Yes!” Storm said. “It’s time for war. We’ve got a new objective. “Our squad is assigned to take out the Western turrets surrounding the Forward Command Post. We’ve got to get going.”
Hunter sat up and looked around the vaguely lit room. Everything was fuzzy. “How long has it been?” Hunter asked. He saw the rest of the 501st walking off their drowsiness. Everyone had to be one hundred percent.
“Our mission clock says 12:00,” Storm replied standing up and beginning to check his gear. Hunter sat up and knocked his head against the bottom of the desk. He turned over on his side and crawled out from underneath the desk. He tried to rub his eyes, but he only rubbed his fingers against his visor.
“Right,” Hunter said, standing up. He was refreshed. He really needed that rest after the hard day of fighting. Flash stood at attention waiting for direct orders.
Caleb stood in the middle of the room, waiting for the others to get up. “We’ve got to attack their turrets at night, hopefully we’ll be able to take them out quickly and quietly. We’ve found that there is no way to shut them down from here. There must be another command post around that they are connected to,” he said when everyone was up.
“Kappa Squad will stay behind,” Max informed everyone. “Hopefully they will be able to direct us to our fire points.”
“I accept that responsibility,” Caleb said. We’ve found some defense points from which you will fire. You should be fairly safe from turret fire in your locations. My squad and I will be controlling all the auto turrets from here. You should run into minimum hostiles. Still, be on the lookout. I’m patching your fire points to your data pads.”
“Any questions, suggestions?” Max asked in finality.
“No, sir!” the soldiers chanted.
“It looks like we’re ready to depart then,” Caleb announced. “Good luck. Once we clear these turrets, we’ll have made the way for our reinforcements.”
“Move out, squads,” Max ordered, forming up with Iota Squad.
“Ready to go?” Hunter asked, pulling out his pistol and turning the safety off.
“You bet,” Max replied. He snapped a new clip into his rifle.
“I’ve got the ordinance,” Storm informed them, latching his rocket launcher onto his back with a grunt. “Let’s go.”
“Roger that,” Flash said. “Forming up.” Iota Squad ran up to one of the bulkheads. It flung open on Caleb’s command. Hunter twirled around and pointed his DC-15s sidearm pistol into the darkness. All traces of lethargy had left him and only sharp reflexes and alertness remained. Hunter switched his visor to low-light mode. This was one of the advancements that regular clone troopers didn’t have on Geonosis. Many clone legions still hadn’t been upgraded with it. Hunter was thankful for it.
As he turned it on, the darkness gave way to a granular pattern of black, white, and every shade of gray in between. He could see the empty corridor stretch out before him. “No hostiles,” Hunter told Iota Squad. The rest of Iota Squad rounded the corner and filed into the hallway. This passageway led to a room that surrounded the main command center. From that room, they could take an access strip all the way to their fire point, Iota Fire Point, labeled IFP on the holo map of the command post.
Iota Squad made their way down the dark passageway, backs together in ready position. Their feet made clanging sounds as the soldiers made their way over the corrugated metal floor. The hallway was virtually empty, except for the pipelines and power strips that were wired to the ceiling and walls. It didn’t take long for them to reach the room surrounding the command center.
The room was rather creepy. It was full of ramps and computer terminals, similar to the command center. The place was completely black and nobody was in there. Not even droid scraps. Suddenly, and auto turret popped out from the ceiling. Storm extended his vibro blade and thrust it up into the turret. It sparked. Storm grabbed hold of the top and yanked it down. “Blast,” he said.
“Why’d you do that?” Max asked in a casual tone.
“I forgot that they were on our side now.”
“Tell me about it,” Flash said. “After all the training.” He could remember countless time spent training against auto turrets.
“Let’s keep moving. According to this holo map, we have to take this upward ramp. From there, it should be a straight course to the IFP,” Max told them. They ascended up the tightly linked cable ramp. At the top were more ramps. Directly to their left was a long conduit. It appeared to go straight forever.
“This one appears to match up with the holo map,” Hunter commented.
“True ‘dat,” Flash said excitedly. “Let’s see where it leads.”
“Roger that, Flash,” Max said, pausing before stepping up to the threshold. Max stepped up onto the conduit. It appeared to be like a sewage pipe, only it had what looked like was tubes running along the side of it. The floor was made of corrugated metal only it felt thinner.
Hunter walked down the walkway with his pistol at the ready. He starred down its sights at the shades of gray that covered the walls. “This place is pretty cool,” he commented.
“Tell me about it,” Flash said rather loudly into the squad comm. system. “And no droids; what a deal.”
“Could you try to keep it down until the turrets have been neutralized?” Max asked, only semi-annoyed. “I want this objective to go smoothly.”
“Lighten up, Lead,” Flash said cheerfully. “You heard, Caleb. They’ve got this place covered with auto turrets. There’s no…”
“I think Max meant for you to shut it,” Storm interrupted in his deep scary voice.
“Whatever,” Flash mumbled to himself. He slapped the end butt of his pistol to make sure that the clip was firmly in place.
Hunter noticed that the pipes stopped running along the walls and the ceiling. He looked down. He could see through a grate on the floor. They were walking on a bridge. No matter, as long as it got them to the IFP. Then he spotted a white hunk move to the side in his peripheral vision. “Hold up, squad,” Hunter announced. “We’ve got movement.
Storm was already kneeling on one knee, his pistol aimed in the direction of the movement. “Wait a minute,” he said. “We’re in a conjunction of bridges.” Hunter looked around. He could make out the outline of many bridges at all different levels around them. There were strips above, below and to the sides of them. He couldn’t see much else. His low-light visor mode was too grainy at a distance.
“I sure hope that we’re not in the position that I think we’re in,” Flash said almost humorously. He slowly pocketed his pistol and pulled his DC-15x sniper rifle off from his back. He gradually pulled it up until the scope met his eye. His vision turned from a grainy black and white to a clear blue image of the squad’s surroundings. “What the…”
“What is it?” Max asked, starting to kneel down behind the guard railing of the bridge.
Flash stared through the scope of his sniper rifle at the lines of bridges that sprawled out before him. Lined on all of these bridges were hundreds of droids packed tightly together. They appeared to be turned off. “Droids,” Flash gulped. “Lots of them.”
Flash continued to scan the area. There were bridges above them as well, no doubt. Then he turned and stared down the access strip that they were on. It was clear, but there wouldn’t be cover for approximately one hundred meters. “We’ve got estimated cover in one hundred meters,” Flash informed the squad.
“Even if we made the break, we’d still get shot down,” Hunter commented. “That is, if our situation is as bad as you say it is.” Now that Hunter knew that there really were droids surrounding them, he started to see them better. He still felt like he was seeing a moving object too. “It’s just my imagination,” Hunter thought to himself.
“I’m calling Kappa,” Max said and shrunk down into the bridge, hoping that the droids would remain turned off. “Kappa, this is Iota Lead. Do you read me?”
“Copy, Iota,” Caleb’s voice came through the platoon comm. system a moment later. “What’s your situation?”
“We believe that we’ve been caught in a trap. I’m patching our position to you now,” Max said, doing as he said he would. “Could you check our position for hostiles? Flash says that we’re surrounded by inactive droids. Is this true?”
“I’m checking now,” Caleb replied. A moment later, his voice came back. “What the…”
“That’s what I said,” Flash interrupted. Max motioned for Flash to shut up and let Caleb continue.
“You appear to be in some kind of bridge conjunction. It matches up with the maps in the command center. The bridges are indeed lined with droids. However, they do appear to be inactive. That’s why our auto turrets didn’t catch them. We’ll have to take them out manually.”
“Do they have any wets?” Hunter asked, remembering the movement that he saw.
“Scanning,” Caleb replied. “Wait a minute. Iota Squad, turn off your night vision. I repeat, turn off your night vision filters.”
“Do it,” Max ordered. All four members of Iota Squad turned off their low-light setting. Everything turned black; they couldn’t see a thing. Hunter’s heart raced. He felt vulnerable.
“They’re emitting light. Something’s wrong with our low-light equipment. It’s letting out light,” Caleb told them, panic in his voice. “If there is a wet down there, they’ve got your position.”
“And there is,” Flash said slowly, his sniper scope placed firmly against his eye. His crosshairs were placed steadily on a Trandoshan mercenary. It appeared to be some sort of stealth commando by the looks of its armor. “I’ve got it.” His finger twitched, but he refrained from squeezing the trigger. “Not yet,” he thought.
Max reached around until he found his blaster rifle. He brought it up and peered down the scope. “Yeah, we’ve definitely got droids.”
“We’ve got your backs, Iota Squad,” Caleb said. Just then, several auto turrets popped out from the ceiling. Flash watched as the Trandoshan signaled to someone else. The droids lifted up their rifles.
“We’ve sprung the night trap,” Hunter commented, confidence drifting from his voice.
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