Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by ChaserGrey » 2011-03-23 10:40am

Hmmm. You know, that's a pretty wicked cool idea. In fact, it's so wicked cool that I think I'm going to steal it.

It also gives me a chance to do something I've been playing with for a while. This story's winding down, and I don't plan to do anything more with the Proof-verse. (Of course, I said that last time.) Definitely wouldn't have gotten this far without the encouragement, challenges, and ideas I've gotten from people on the board. So.

Since I can't do a credits reel, consider this another reader participation opportunity. Raise your hand and I'll write in a cameo for you in our little "gearing up to fight" montage. Depending on response, you may end up as one of Bohner's Boneheads if I run out of slots elsewhere. You've been warned. :D
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by Scottish Ninja » 2011-03-23 05:12pm

Ooh! Ooh! Pick me! Pick me!

This, obviously, can only end well. :P
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by ChaserGrey » 2011-03-23 08:39pm

Addendum to the above: Simon_Jester and KlavoHunter are, sadly not eligible- because they've already gotten their walk-ons. Major Simon Hunter, the American Ellis talked to at Regentropfen Airport. I'll let you all upscroll.

See, my original plan was to hide stuff like that in the story and do an Easter Egg hunt while it was all done, but frankly, given how choppy my writing time is these days I haven't been able to work in clever little tricks like that. Spend all my time on foolish things, like getting the plot right and having some semblance of continuity between chapters. Thus, this Plan B.

So Simon and Klavo- if you read this, take a bow. Sorry for not asking permission, but lemme tell ya, it was gonna be a great plan...
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by KlavoHunter » 2011-03-23 09:14pm

Egads, he threw us both through the teleporter and we came out like Tuvix!


Let's mow some of these Snake bastards down!
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by Simon_Jester » 2011-03-23 09:30pm

KlavoHunter wrote:Egads, he threw us both through the teleporter and we came out like Tuvix!

Let's mow some of these Snake bastards down!
Wait, did he wind up with my brains and your sense of humor, or your brains and my sense of humor?

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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by ChaserGrey » 2011-03-23 09:37pm

KlavoHunter wrote:Egads, he threw us both through the teleporter and we came out like Tuvix!
<Han> "It's not my fault!" </Han>
Let's mow some of these Snake bastards down!
Not a bad ambition, considering where your namesake is stationed. You gotta figure that if the fit really hits the shan, the Army detachment on Madagascar probably has orders that go like such: "Kill as many Snakes as you can before we have to nuke you. Sorry about having to nuke you."
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by ChaserGrey » 2011-03-23 09:39pm

Simon_Jester wrote:Wait, did he wind up with my brains and your sense of humor, or your brains and my sense of humor?

We need to know this!
No, you may not borrow my bit characters for "destructive biological testing".

Seriously, why do we even *have* a form for that?
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by Simon_Jester » 2011-03-23 09:43pm

ChaserGrey wrote:Not a bad ambition, considering where your namesake is stationed. You gotta figure that if the fit really hits the shan, the Army detachment on Madagascar probably has orders that go like such: "Kill as many Snakes as you can before we have to nuke you. Sorry about having to nuke you."
Well, as long as you promise to be sorry about it, it's OK. Hey, wait a minute...
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by ChaserGrey » 2011-03-23 09:47pm

Simon_Jester wrote:Well, as long as you promise to be sorry about it, it's OK. Hey, wait a minute...
If it makes you feel any better, it's more or less the same orders the Berlin Brigade had during the Cold War. "Your purpose is to deter the Soviets by ensuring that any attack on West Berlin will involve American troops. In the effect that they decide this is not sufficient deterrent, you're pretty much hosed. We'd appreciate it if you'd cause as much damage as possible to the Third Shock Army before they run you over like Wile E. Coyote in front of a steamroller. Love and kisses, CINCEUR."
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by CaptainChewbacca » 2011-03-24 12:37pm

Wasn't that pretty much the exact same reason we have troops on the Korean DMZ?
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by ChaserGrey » 2011-03-24 12:50pm

Bingo. We can't actually stop the North Koreans from storming across the DMZ if they really want to. What we can do is make sure that if they do, it means war with the U.S. as well as with South Korea. It's worked so far.

There's a logic to deterrence, but working through it gives me the same standing-on-my-head feeling I used to have reading Alice in Wonderland as a kid. On the plus side, it did keep us from incinerating each other during the Cold War, which is always a plus.
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by Simon_Jester » 2011-03-24 02:34pm

Well, it always made sense to me. Then again, so did quantum mechanics.

I think I need to get my brain recalibrated or something.
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by Chris OFarrell » 2011-03-25 05:28am

Of course, given the state of the North Korean and American armies now, the US troops in Korea actually have a half decent chance of holding their ground these days despite the numerical disadvantage.

But when they were first put in play, it was very much just like the Berlin brigade.
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by Teebs » 2011-03-25 08:42am

Chris OFarrell wrote:Of course, given the state of the North Korean and American armies now, the US troops in Korea actually have a half decent chance of holding their ground these days despite the numerical disadvantage.

But when they were first put in play, it was very much just like the Berlin brigade.
Never mind the Americans, I was under the impression that these days the South Korean armed forces alone would beat the North Koreans fairly easily.

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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by Sophie » 2011-03-25 09:13am

Teebs wrote: Never mind the Americans, I was under the impression that these days the South Korean armed forces alone would beat the North Koreans fairly easily.
Well, so long as you ignore the huge amount of artillery the north has pointed at the south, sure. It's probably pretty crude by our standards,, but they do have an awful lot of it pointed at their neighbors.
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by CaptainChewbacca » 2011-03-25 11:51am

Yeah, NK has (by some estimates) a MILLION artillery tubes in range of Seoul.
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by Simon_Jester » 2011-03-25 03:37pm

Sophie wrote:
Teebs wrote: Never mind the Americans, I was under the impression that these days the South Korean armed forces alone would beat the North Koreans fairly easily.
Well, so long as you ignore the huge amount of artillery the north has pointed at the south, sure. It's probably pretty crude by our standards,, but they do have an awful lot of it pointed at their neighbors.
It's not that they couldn't do it- a million guns doesn't do a lot of good if your troops can't advance out of range of those guns because they're half-starved and ammunition supplies are short.

It's that they couldn't do it and save Seoul. Deterring the war keeps Seoul from getting blown up.
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by Sidewinder » 2011-03-27 04:39pm

ChaserGrey wrote:You gotta figure that if the fit really hits the shan, the Army detachment on Madagascar probably has orders that go like such: "Kill as many Snakes as you can before we have to nuke you. Sorry about having to nuke you."
Considering Stonewall was expecting the Japanese to try and play him like a fiddle, and made arrangements to force their would-be puppeteers' hand, I suspect the merarch also issued standing orders on what to do if the Japanese tried to stab him in the back. As for what Japan will do when the shit hits the fan, I suspect Yamamoto will denounce the Army officers responsible, as "traitors," and carry out a bloody purge of its ranks- and the Army will be forced to choose between letting Yamamoto carry out the purge, or starting a Goddamn civil war.
Please do not make Americans fight giant monsters.

Those gun nuts do not understand the meaning of "overkill," and will simply use weapon after weapon of mass destruction (WMD) until the monster is dead, or until they run out of weapons.

They have more WMD than there are monsters for us to fight. (More insanity here.)

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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by MondoMage » 2011-03-27 09:40pm

Sidewinder wrote:As for what Japan will do when the shit hits the fan, I suspect Yamamoto will denounce the Army officers responsible, as "traitors," and carry out a bloody purge of its ranks- and the Army will be forced to choose between letting Yamamoto carry out the purge, or starting a Goddamn civil war.
A lot of that will depend on what exactly the political situation is in Japan. Will the revelation of the plot destabilize things enough for Yamamoto (or someone else) to move against the planners? Or will the plotters have people in place to take the blame/fall and thus remain fairly insulated against repurcussions? And what precisely will the Allied forces' reaction to Japanese collusion with a militant Draka faction be?

Be interesting if they actually manage to salvage something of intelligence value from the wreck of that freighter to prove what the Japanese were up to... but odds are all they won't get that lucky.

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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by Sidewinder » 2011-03-27 10:31pm

MondoMage wrote:Will the revelation of the plot destabilize things enough for Yamamoto (or someone else) to move against the planners? Or will the plotters have people in place to take the blame/fall and thus remain fairly insulated against repurcussions?
Even if the planners had scapegoats ready to sacrifice themselves to protect their masters, the Army officers' authority will be called to question, if only for Yamamoto to say, "You Army boys are so stupid, you didn't notice your subordinates were providing ballistic missiles to the Draka- right under your noses?!" Of course, considering their poor planning abilities- as demonstrated by the fact they had NO PLAN to win a war against the US, other than "Do something to force the US to the negotiations table... like invade or occupy Hawaii, or shit like that,"- I doubt the Japanese militarists have backup plans in place.
And what precisely will the Allied forces' reaction to Japanese collusion with a militant Draka faction be?

Be interesting if they actually manage to salvage something of intelligence value from the wreck of that freighter to prove what the Japanese were up to... but odds are all they won't get that lucky.
Considering the conspiracy theorists in this world, suspect China orchestrated Egypt's 2011 regime change, the conspiracy theorists in the Drakafic world will likely go nuts. Besides, Asian blood has been spilled in African waters. Even if there's no conclusive evidence to link the Draka to the Japanese militarists, the presence of dead Japanese WILL look suspicious.
Please do not make Americans fight giant monsters.

Those gun nuts do not understand the meaning of "overkill," and will simply use weapon after weapon of mass destruction (WMD) until the monster is dead, or until they run out of weapons.

They have more WMD than there are monsters for us to fight. (More insanity here.)

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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by ChaserGrey » 2011-03-28 01:48am

Not to be too nitpicky, but this isn't in the Drakafic world. It's a timeline of my own devising, and the folks who wrote the Drakafic way back when shouldn't be blamed for anything that happens here. ;)
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by MondoMage » 2011-03-28 06:23pm

Sidewinder wrote: Of course, considering their poor planning abilities- as demonstrated by the fact they had NO PLAN to win a war against the US, other than "Do something to force the US to the negotiations table... like invade or occupy Hawaii, or shit like that,"- I doubt the Japanese militarists have backup plans in place.
Not to detour too deeply into a historical debate, but I don't think the Japanese were really looking to get into a war with the US in the first place. Their attack on Pearl Harbor was precipitated primarily by what they considered to be US meddling in Japanese affairs (oil and scrap metal embargoes, for example). Not to say that they didn't have long-range plans along those lines, but involving the US was more a (mis)calculated risk than a solid plan, in my opinion.

While the majority of Japanese may well have had as poor an opinion of Americans as Americans tended to have of the Japanese at the time, those who had traveled the US and knew the American people's psyche held a different opinion. IIRC, Yamamoto himself promised no more than 6 months worth of relatively unopposed activity, and after that he made no promises. As it turned out, it was an eerily prescient observation... Coral Sea happened in May '42 (5 months after Pearl) and Midway in June '42 (6 months after Pearl).

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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by ChaserGrey » 2011-03-28 10:05pm

Well...that is one view. I tend more towards Sidewinder's opinion, for a few reasons. First, while the exact timing of war with the U.S. was certainly influenced by the embargo, Japan was planning for war long before that. For example, Admiral Yamamoto first presented the outline of his Pearl Harbor plan in January of 1941, and the Japanese carrier pilots practiced for it during the spring and summer. The American oil embargo wasn't put in place until August.

Second, while Yamamoto and a few other realists (notably Admiral Inoue Shigeyoshi) appreciated that war with the U.S. would lead to a disaster, that certainly wasn't the dominant view in the Japanese high command at the time. A popular meme at the time was that democracies could not fight long wars, because as casualties mounted and economic strain told voters would demand peace- and get it, because if the current leadership didn't make peace they'd elect someone who would. The Japanese expected that they would seize territory, fortify it, and then break the U.S.' teeth in the first few assaults on the new Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere. After that, the Americans would surely sue for peace.

There really wasn't a backup plan- when the Japanese started losing they just kept trying to hold their perimeter and inflict damage on the Americans. You didn't really get any other major strategies until after Tojo's government fell over the loss of the Marianas, which punctured the idea of a "defensive perimeter" rather neatly when it brought American bombers in range of the homeland. By then it was too late.

Field Marshal Slim observed very trenchantly that the most devastating flaw of the Imperial armed services was a lack of moral, as opposed to physical, courage. There were no backup plans, because making them suggested that the first plan might fail, which would cause great loss of face for the planner. Nobody questioned strategic directives from above no matter how out of touch they were, because it would be very insulting to the superiors who had written the orders. And because people wanted to please those above them in the hierarchy, it was very vulnerable to groupthink and tuning out dissenting voices- like Yamamoto, Shigeyoshi, and a few other realists. I've tried to capture a little of that here.
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by ChaserGrey » 2011-05-22 10:06pm

A/N: Just when you thought it was safe. This is the "credits" scene mentioned a while before, expanded to include pretty much all the regular thread contributors. Yes, I am working on a real update, probably the last or next to last. Look for it in the next couple weeks. In the meantime- this story will be finished. Promise.

0535 Hours
T Minus 25 Minutes to Sunrise
Outside Ragnarok Project Primary Site, Madagascar


Trooper Andrew McIlheny peered down at the valley below him and swore softly to himself. The dawn’s first light was just starting to kiss the horizon, but there was already enough light for McIlheny to see a long, evil cylindrical shape being raised up into a vertical position. From his position on top of one of the hills overlooking the valley, snugged into a small dip near the crest and covered with leaves and camouflage netting, he could see the vague stirrings of men around it, moving fuel tanks and hoses into position. Not much time now. Had to call it in.

Before he could move, though, a soft crunching sound came from up the trail, and McIlheny froze. His eyes tracked the three-man sentry patrol as it swept along the trail and past his position, not moving a muscle save to blink. The troopers making the sweep were good, one in the center with two flankers slightly back, alert and scanning every inch of the jungle in front of them- but McIlheny was one of Century D’s Reconnaissance Commando troopers, and he’d had time to prepare his position.

Bohner’s men walked past without breaking stride, and McIlheny slid backwards off the hill’s crest. Ten yards back, a barely-there whisper stopped him.

“Hey, Ninja.” McIlheny chuckled, once, barely more than a stuttering breath. He’d picked up the nickname back when he first volunteered for Recondo training, when some wise-ass in the cadre wanted to know who’d ever heard of a Scottish ninja. He’d hated it, which meant it stuck like glue.

“Screw you, V.” Trooper Vehrec grinned as he rose up out of the shadowed ground.

“Later on, maybe. Whatcha got?” McIlheny sobered.

“Bohner’s boneheads are fueling their missiles. Saw it.” Vehrec winced.

“Goddammit.” He was already reaching for the handset of his shoebox-sized radio, concealed here where he could raise the antenna without it being seen from the hill’s crest. “I’ll call it in. Probably be up in a minute.” McIlheny nodded silently. They were going to have to go, and soon. The next time the patrol went by their little hide would be the last, and then they had a visit to pay to an antitank gun sited on top of this hill to command the valley below.

As he crawled back up the hill, carrying one of their heavy demolition charges, McIlheny could hear Vehrec talking into his whisper mic.

“Flashfire, Vendetta, this is Lightning One…”

0540 Hours
20 Minutes to Sunrise and Counting
Bridge, USS
Reprisal

“Captain.” Jaime Guitierrez turned to see Lieutenant Cullers, the ship’s communications officer, poke his head in from the radio shack just behind the bridge. “Beg your pardon, Sir, but we’ve got a message from the Snake Recondo teams. Bohner’s getting ready to make his move.” Guitierrez cursed to himself, flicking his eyes over at the horizon, just starting to glow with light. Too soon. Too damned soon! With an effort, he mastered himself and turned back to Cullers.

“Very well, Lieutenant. Pass the word to the Spirit and let Rosie know he’s got a deadline.” Officially, Captain Rosemont’s plane was on the flight schedule as Warhammer 501, but nobody was calling it that today. Cullers saluted and left the bridge, leaving Guitierrez to stare out into the predawn gloom. The ship’s #1 elevator, just forward of the island, was in the down position, and Guitierrez could see down to the flight deck, the men moving around there on errands he prayed to all the saints were fruitless. Errands that he knew might still have to be carried all the way to their awful ends before the sun set.

0541 Hours
19 Minutes to Sunrise and Counting
Hangar Deck One, USS
Reprisal

“Make a hole!” Chief Aviation Ordnanceman Chris O’Farrell led the charge from the #2 bomb hoist, clearing the way for the men behind him and listening for any sudden clicking from the Geiger counter at his belt. It was a million to one that he’d hear anything out of the ordinary, of course, but The Book said that you had one on whenever you moved anything nuclear and this was one case in which you definitely did not disregard The Book. Behind him Petty Officer Declan pushed a yellow-painted cart across the hangar deck’s nonskid surface. The cart was almost entirely taken up by an almost featureless white oval shape, with only a small set of fins at the rear to indicate that it was even a bomb- let alone one capable of turning an entire city into a smoking ruin. Beneath the bomb, on the side of the yellow ordnance cart, some wise-ass had stenciled “THIS IS NOT A TOY” in black spraypaint.

They pulled the cart up to Warhammer 509, one of the Myrmidons’ remaining bomber airframes. The internal bomb bay’s doors had already been cranked open, and O’Farrell took his place at the other end of the cart and caught Declan’s eye.

“When you’re ready.” His partner nodded, letting his thumb come down on the cart’s electric lift button, lifting the nuclear bomb most of the way up into the Realiator’s bomb bay. When it was six inches or so from the rack, O’Farrell reached in and cranked the racks down the rest of the way, snapping the ordnance lugs into place. Declan cranked the cart down, and they both stepped back. O’Farrell slapped the third man on the team on the shoulder, pointing in towards the white nuclear shape.

“All yours, Shep.” The fuze man grinned widely, ducking in with the ease of long practice and taking a screwdriver from his belt as he went to install the bomb’s detonators. O’Farrell shook his head. Shep was one of the best ordnance technicians on Reprisal and he wouldn’t want anyone else getting “his” bomb ready, but sometimes the man seemed a bit too eager to see the nukes fly.

For a minute, O’Farrell looked around the hangar bay, taking in the sights around him. Ordnance teams like his own were moving towards all of the squadron’s Retaliators, each bearing a single nuclear bomb. They had stood up for strategic alert before, in countless drills and once even for real on a memorable WestPac that had left them staring down Japanese Navy planes flying out of Thailand, but this time it was different. This time, unless the Old Man pulled off another one of his certified ass-crazy stunts, the birds were gonna fly and the bombs were gonna fall.

He really, really hoped the Old Man knew what he was doing.

0542 Hours
T Minus 18 Minutes to Sunrise and Counting
Aboard
Spirit of Rio

Captain Julius Rosemont grimaced as he heard the report relayed over the airwaves from Reprisal. They had only a very, very little time left. Well, that was all right. He only needed a very, very little time to pull his plan off, and Navy Aviation didn’t encourage dallying anyhow.

Rosemont carefully eased his throttles back and pulled away from the crescent-winged Vampire attack jet that had just finished topping off his tanks. The drogue-and-hose refueling apparatus retracted back into the “buddy” store beneath the Vampire’s right wing, and Rosemont nodded slightly in satisfaction. Strictly speaking the Retaliator didn’t need refueling to hop over to Madagascar and drop some bombs, but if they were going to make this work it was going to mean a lot of stooging around on the deck, low and fast with the burner lit. That would suck up gas like nobody’s business, but it was also the only way to get the job done.

“504’s set.” Brown had been watching over his right shoulder as their wingman finished his own refueling, and Rosemont nodded. Saint and Mondo were the Myrmidon’s best defense-suppression crew, and having them along with a full bag of gas made it that much more likely they could pull this scam off. One problem down, several thousand to go. He keyed the radio.

“Thanks, Maya. Thanks, Chewie. Hate to drink and run, but seems we’ve got an appointment to keep.” The Vampire flight leader chuckled back.

“Buy us a drink next time we’re in port, Rosie. And good luck.” The two light attack jets broke off and headed back for Reprisal, and Rosemont looked over at Brown.

“Okay, Mad Dog, first waypoint. Let’s get low, and let’s get fast.” Brown nodded, and a second later a white steering bug blipped up on his horizontal navigation display. Rosemont eased the stick over to track it and dove for the deck, pushing the twin throttles forward to full military power. As they dove for the dark sea below, he flipped his radio over to the common frequency they’d agreed on with Ellis.

“Flashfire, this is Spirit. Eight minutes. Repeat, eight minutes. Over.”

0544 Hours
T Minus 16 Minutes to Sunrise
Hide Point Dragon-Three, Madagascar


“Copy.” Jenny White spoke into her handset, then glanced over at Centurion Ellis. “Eight minutes, Centurion. Spirit’s on her way in.” Ellis nodded, jaw tightening. He hated to wait when he felt any minute could bring a missile shooting up from inside that valley, signaling the death of the Race, but he didn’t have a choice. Besides, unless his Recondo troopers had been very negligent or Bohner’s people were very, very good they’d need at least fifteen or twenty more minutes to crank the missiles into vertical position, fuel them, and launch them. Moving faster would court accidents.

Ellis grinned tightly at that. Not that he’d mind if one of Bohner’s boneheads had a little accident with a warhead full of D7 gas, of course.

“Allright, Draka! Eight minutes! Get hot!” There was a stir of activity from the clearing around him, muffled and furtive but none the less intense for all of that. The Century’s troopers had mostly been hiding inside their vehicles for the past half hour or so, huddling together under cover to make sure they kept out of sight. Now they moved, quickly but quietly, pushing aisde camo netting and checking their personal weapons. Decurion Pelranius, one of the Buffalo commanders, was adjusting the feed on his vehicle’s boiler with a fixed expression Ellis had seen before- the one a man wears when he’s about to go into a situation utterly outside his control, so he focuses on getting the one thing he can control absolutely right.

Next to one of the vehicle’s tires, Warrant McWhirter took Trooper Borg’s machete and brought it down onto a hollow bamboo stalk, chopping halfway through before the blade stuck in the fleshy green material. McWhirter shook his head, and Ellis stepped closer to hear what he was saying.

“See, kid? Keen’s good, but too sharp an edge and it’ll stick right into bone instead of cutting through. Here.” McWhirter tapped open the handle of his own knife, taking out a small file and carefully drawing it across the blade. “I’ll show you how to put a bevel on her. Do it right and she’ll hack right through a neck like nothin’.” Borg looked interested, but also a bit disturbed at the man who would shortly be charging into battle at his side. Ellis snorted mentally. There was progress for the Race, if you liked.

The first bits of the sun were starting to show themselves, blood-red streaks of light burning across the horizon and through the jungle cover around them. Ellis looked down, carefully checking the Holbars he’d taken from company spares one last time. Then he sat on his command car’s upper deck, eased back into the sun, and closed his eyes to savor the warmth for a moment.

His people were ready as he could make them. He’d go over the plan one more time with his Tetrarchs in a minute or two. But for now, Pietr Ellis was going to savor a couple of what might be the last minutes of peace he’d ever have, as the sun rose inexorably higher in the sky.
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Mayabird
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Re: Breaking Strain: Sequel to Proof Through the Night

Post by Mayabird » 2011-05-23 12:13am

“Thanks, Maya.
No, thank you, good sir! :-D

And as always, take your time. We're in no big hurry (*glares at anyone who may say otherwise*) and I'd rather see a good great FREAKING AWESOME ending instead of a rushed bad one.
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SDNW4 Nation: The Refuge And, on Nova Terra, Al-Stan the Totally and Completely Honest and Legitimate Weapons Dealer and Used Starship Salesman slept on a bed made of money, with a blaster under his pillow and his sombrero pulled over his face. This is to say, he slept very well indeed.

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