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Re: Deathwalker (Free Federation)

Posted: 2011-12-15 07:24am
by Imperial Overlord
The Spillway
The War Zone

Between the jamming, the smoke, and the heat blooms visual range wasn't much better than nil. Ansa's oxygen rich atmosphere helped stoke small blazes into roaring infernos in the blink of an eye. According to his datalink, which was erratic at best, they were winning. According to his personal body count, they were absolutely slaughtering the enemy.

The Slavers had broken swiftly. Kail had smashed their center and the lion's share of their heavy armour in the first brutal minutes of the slugging match and the Slaver lines had fallen inward like a V. Free Federation citizens had turned that collapse into a slaughter and routed additional elements. Grav armour could cross the Spillway, but doing so meant a half kilometer jaunt with little cover and Free Federation guns already zeroed in to kill those who crossed. The further decimation of Slaver armour had lead to wide scale panic and resulted in a day of hunter-killer operations as the Free Federation hunted them down and the Slavers alternately fought and fled.

Unfortunately, at least one Slaver Lord and some heavy iron had survived the opening debacle so the hunters could find themselves the hunted. Kail stepped over the body burned beyond recognition and consulted his sensor net. There were things that could not be hidden. Blindingly bright high energy lasers and particle beam weapons were visible at long range even through the smoke. Jamming fields intense enough to hide active fusion plants were themselves visible. High energy discharges left finger prints on the sensor nets as did the One Power.

Telling friend from foe in this hash was a little trickier, but manageable. Kail had resolved that issue by being the point of the spear and plunging deep into the Slaver lines, killing everything in his path. The soldiers with him had struggled to keep up, let alone match his kill tally. Kail wasn't counting, but his battle computer was. More than a thousand probables over the last two hours. A mostly meaningless number. He had killed a lot of them and they had become thin on the ground. That, along with their position, was telling. Especially since Sixth Cohort had moved to block off any escape into the lower river valley. All signs pointed to victory.

Kail trusted none of them. He swept the area with his eyes and his sensor net. Threads of cyan light sliced through the air as brute strength plundered earth and sky with seeker spells. Nothing. They weren't here. He had guessed wrong.

"Project enemy contact points with time stamp linkage," he ordered. The tac map was projected on his retinas, hell red markers indicating contacts with the Slavers. Cobalt marks representing the Free Federation were far, far, more numerous. He swept his area from the map and considered the projections.

"There," he marked on the map. "There we'll hunt them." They would not escape, not this side of the grave. He would not permit it.

Re: Deathwalker (Free Federation)

Posted: 2011-12-15 09:48pm
by Morningstar
Woooo!!! As always a great read!

Re: Deathwalker (Free Federation)

Posted: 2013-02-01 09:45am
by Imperial Overlord
Rift Web
The War Zone

Yvaren hustled along the rocks, sprinting for cover with all the strength of his leg muscles and his armour's power assist. The broken terrain gave lousy footing and he almost fell twice. Lasers tore blue-white tracks through the air, flash heating the water in the rocks they struck and causing them to blow like bombs. The rest of his squad was firing back at the enemy position atop the cliffs, covering his advance.

A beam glanced over his breastplate, driving his energy sink to near overload and spiking his environmentals up. At closer range and at a more direct angle it might have slagged the outer layers of his power armour. Of course, with his sink in overload he wouldn't be able to bleed any energy from any more hits and they might burn through the armour and kill him directly instead of cooking him alive.

He made it to the cover of a large boulder without being hit again. He crouched behind it and looked at the tac display that covered his unit. Mara was in the back with her Lance sniper las, Dace and Asseyeth closer in with assault beamers and providing spray and pray cover duties. Kessen was waiting for the right moment, which wasn't that different from what Yvaren was doing.

His sink dump more heat and went from overload to red zone. Yvaren checked his own weapon. The shatter cannon was big and bulky, fifteen kilos without counting the heavy duty backpack power generator that made the weapon more than a lump of dead metal and ceramic. All lights green. Thank Death for that. It would have been funny if he had run all this way just to reach the kill zone with a broken weapon.

The slave soldiers were eating through the boulder pretty good. His sink was down to yellows, but it wasn't likely to drop much more before he was naked and exposed. The enemy was sitting at the top of a two hundred meter tall canyon wall and not much inclined to move. They were dug in and spread out and had a good view of both the table top above the criss-crossing canyons and a good view of the ravines themselves. If they managed to become a rally point, the enemy might start fighting back in earnest and then things would get nasty.

He was still more than half a klick away and with a shatter cannon that was too damn far. Rape this and their overseers, Yvaren thought. Now was as good a time to do this as any. "I'm ready to run again. You'd better cover my ass." Fuck the war, it was beyond fucked up. Fuck the war and the Kordassi and the fucking Slaver Lords who forced it on everyone.

"On your word," said Mara. She'd become de facto squad leader when Mysk, who wasn't quite as green as the rest of the squad and the de jury squad leader, had bought it when a swarmer sub-missile had hit him in the face and blown his head into red mist and an ugly splatter. "Kessen will slam them and then you run."

"Fuck fuck fuck," whispered Yvaren. Most of the boulder was gone. "Now!" he yelled. He counted. One, two, fuck it. He broke cover with at an augmented run. A rocket ripped by overhead, Kessen's thank the merciless gods and almighty Death. Dace and Asseyeth sent rapid flash-stutters of blue-white dead striking along the top of the canyon wall, encouraging the slave-soldiers to keep their heads down. A ragged volley of fire struck around Yvaren, but nothing hit.

Kessen's rocket burst into four kill vehicles, moving independently to attack different troop clusters. Each one swooped down towards its target and then explosively launched a barrage of iridium alloy penetrator needles. Some would kill or wound, some would not. Just about everyone would keep their head down, which was the important point. Yvaren needed just a handful of seconds.

He got them. Augmented strides ate distance as if it was nothing. Power armour wasn't just tougher than the armourweave with helmet and reinforced vest that the Slaver Lords mass produced for their slave soldiers and it could do more than just carry heavier weapons, it could also run faster and longer. Movement was life.

Another AP missile flashed overhead, courtesy of Kessen. He was almost there. He slung up the shatter cannon. The range was shit, but fuck did it have a kick. Yvaren level the weapon at the trickle of a stream running down the canyonbed in front of him. The range was pretty damn close. He fired.

The weird thing was that the shatter cannon didn't really have any kick. The stream and the surrounding ground exploded, filling the air with a geyser of earth and gravel. A temporary, but timely, shroud of darkness between him and his enemies. Yvaren ran into the swirling cloud of debris. It would take a few seconds before it would clear and he didn't need to see them to kill them. The firing points glowed in his tac displays as the cannon whined indicating it was again ready to fire.

He raised the shatter cannon and fired. The cliff face exploded three-quarters of the way up as the shatter cannon blew a huge hollow in the canyon wall. The cliff top collapsed as the supporting earth and rocks was blasted away and fell down and apart in slide of earth and rocks. Yvaren was smiling, thinking of how hard it would be to get off a steady shot with the ground collapsing around them. That's if they had a shot. He was close enough that some of them probably couldn't get a beam on him. The cannon whined again as it came to full charge.

He fired again. And again. And again. He tore down the top of the canyon for one hundred and fifty meters on either side. Earth, rock, and bodies tumbled down. Three Slavers, hard suit armoured overseers that were the bottom rung of the slave owner ladder, survived the fall courtesy of the impact gel in the softsuits that formed the inner layer of their armour. They battered and stunned and possible concussed, bruised, and bearing broken bones.

Yvaren didn't bother to find out. The shatter cannon turned the hard suits into canned stew, pulping organs and muscleswhile blasting bones to gravel. "Mother raping slaver trash," he hissed. The rest of his squad was forming up on him.

"You okay?" Mara asked.

"Yeah princess, I'm fine."

"Good," she replied.

"Nice shooting," said Dace.

"Think so?" Yvaren said. "Next time you do it. No way in all the Slaver hells I'm going to risk getting my ass shot off like that again."

"Sure thing," said Mara. "Now lets get back to hunting. Some of the Slaver barracks are intact and once we finish clearing and holding there might be hot showers in the foreseeable future."

"Fuck," said Dace, "I'll kill for a shower."

"That's the idea," said Mara.

"Let's just on with it," said Yvaren. "It's been a long day already and it's only just past noon."