Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/2022506-Skirmish-of-Alma-Portus
Rated: 13+ · Other · War · #2022506
A short story I recently wrote.
"Captain, come take a look at this." First lieutenant Johansen said. Captain Peterson walked over to her console.

"What is it lieutenant?"  He peered down as she spoke.

"I'm reading two hundred unknown signatures."

"I know those signals! Get those readings to the Admiral ASAP!"

      "Sir all six early warning stations have sent in reports. A total of six-hundred warships inbound. The signal appears to be Calendrea in nature."

"That can't be right. They must be an unknown race or band of pirates that got their hands on Calendrea tech. Send the Flaming Dawn to establish contact."

        "Captain, we are within hailing distance of the lead vessel."

"Understood, hail them." The lieutenant activated the com. A deep hissing voice came over the audio feed.

"Sso the Terranss greet uss at lasst."

"This is Captain Erick Valdor of the Flaming Dawn. You are intruding on Alliance Space, identify yourselves."

The visual feed kicked on and there on screen, sat a Calendrea warrior.

"All stations, red alert! Raise the shields, and get us out of here, now! And hail the Admiral!"

The signal was cut off as the Flaming Dawn was destroyed.

"Damn it! I thought we killed them all! Get Alma Control on the com!"

"Control, I need you to broadcast the following: This is Admiral James Patton. We are under attack. Three FTL probes have been sent to the Occupied Worlds. We fought these aggressors once before, and we defeated them, though at a great cost, for we destroyed an entire world. The Calendrea have returned."

Scott Davis, an ex-Marine now a miner from the platforms on Platana, the world which Alma orbited, was on furlough. As soon as the shuttle landed he grabbed his bags, and headed for the drop door. Just as he and seven others disembarked, the last sentence rang out across the tarmac.

"The Calendrea have returned."

Scott's face paled and he dropped his bags. He looked at his friend, Ben Bartolli.

"Well... This can't be good."

Just then another voice rang out. "All able-bodied personnel report to the auditorium on the third tier."

"Well let's go, looks like leave is over."

They all sprinted to the entrance to the spaceport. As they entered they ran to the left and took it to the third tier, second floor. Scott stepped off first, and entered the auditorium. He saw an empty seat beside an Elf, he sat down and introduced himself.

"Greetings, I am Scott Davis, any clue what the hell is going on?"

The elf looked at him. "I am Eleana Sotari, and I'm not entirely sure myself what is going on."

Soon, the room a hush came over the auditorium. "As you have all heard there is a hostile fleet in system. These aggressors are the Calandrea, a race we fought and defeated almost three thousand years ago. Now these bastards are back and they want to rip this world from our hands. We will be splitting into four groups, based upon what floor you are sitting on. Those on the first floor will stay here, those on the second will hold the ruins in the Ozarak Mountains. The third floor will be stationed in the Elatair Caverns. Those on the fourth floor will take shelter in the Seranto Forest."

Scott checked his armor, making sure everything was online. He was glad that he knew where the armory was. As his HUD display came online, he noticed three blips on his radar. He loaded a rocket into the under barrel off his assault rifle.

"Three Calendrea fighters inbound!" He yelled to the person in charge of his group, a Terran male of around thirty years of age. As soon as the first fighter appeared over the horizon he took careful aim and waited for it to get into range. A quarter of the column hunkered down, ready to defend the rest of the men, who continued on towards their destination. Within seconds the first fighter came into range and he braced his rifle against his shoulder and fired, the rocket racing towards its target, as soon as it struck the ship erupted in a ball of fire, spraying shrapnel and molten metal in every direction. The next fighter fired off three missiles, which corkscrewed through the air, one striking the head of the fleeing column killing twenty men, the second missing completely, and the third striking forty feet away from Scott, the blast picking him up and throwing him ten feet away, as he fell his head hit a rock. His vision turned blurry, and he felt the sensation of someone picking him up before all went dark.

"He's waking!"

Scott slowly opened his eyes, blinking rapidly as they adjusted to the lighting, the figures standing around him slowly came into focus.

"So Scott, you finally awaken." Eleana, the elf he had sat by at the port, stood over him now, smiling down at him. Scott leaned forward and put a hand to the back of his head, groaning in pain.

"God, my head. What happened?"

"You were hit by the blast from a missile and hit your head off a boulder, you shot down one fighter, but the other two took down a good bit of our men, before being blown out of the sky."

Scott's face saddened some. "How many where lost?"

"Sixty three."

Scott shook his head. "Damn. How many are here now?"

"Two hundred thirty six at last count." Star fighter

"Well it should be enough to hold out, provided we aren't found."

A voice came over the intercom.

"All personnel report to the inner cavern for a briefing"

Davis looked at Eleana.

"Well let's go." Eleana guided him to their destination.

As Davis and his friend sat a young woman in a military uniform stepped onto a raised platform.

"I am Second Lieutenant Kathleen Waller of the Alliance Marine Corp. These caverns where used as a military supply depot. We have plenty of weapons, armor, and even several combat mechs." Her voice broke a bit. "We lost sixty seven men when we tried to escape to this place. Sixty three died in combat, the rest died of various injuries in the medical ward. We are left with only two hundred and thirty seven men. With our numbers and equipment we should be able to wage an effective guerrilla war against our invaders. Sadly the fighters in the Seranto Forest were found and slaughtered only three escaped, they arrived at the Ozarak Mountains two days ago. Alma Portus has fallen to the enemy as well, most of the men escaped and fled to the Ozarak Mountains as well. Most of those who stayed behind died trying to hold the city. There are thirty seven survivors hidden in the ruins of an ancient city below Portus. They managed to get many supplies from the armory before they fled. They are harassing the enemy as much as possible within the city. The Calendrea have set up an outpost sixteen miles east of here. I need any experienced fighters to volunteer to scout out this outpost. You may not come back from this, so think carefully before you decide." Ten humans and six elves stood slowly. Davis looked around and shook his head before standing up.  Kathleen asked that everyone who stood come to the command center that had been set up in the center of the main cavern in three hours.

They went to visit Kathleen two hours later. Davis knocked on the door to her quarters and she quickly answered. As the door slid open she smiled and told them to come inside.

"Ah Scott Davis, I've heard a lot about you."

"Like what?"

"That you made First Lieutenant in the Marines, for one. That you fought in the Undetran Rebellion on Cetal for two, and lastly that you left the Marines rather due to atrocities that you were forced to commit. Also that just before you left you decked your former CO. I need a marine like you, and I'm glad you volunteered for this mission. However I can officially restore you to the Marines at your former rank, as I am the highest ranking officer on world currently. But if I do that then you will have the right to lead this cell."

"I have no interest in leading the resistance. However I'm willing to lead the men on this recon. I may not want to, but I'm the only one with sufficient training and experience for this mission." They talked until it was time to go.

"The meeting is in a few minutes, walk with me."

They entered the command center a few minutes later. The men were already gathered around the holo projector in the center of the room. As they walked in Davis took a seat. Kathleen walked to the projector and turned it on, in a few seconds a three dimensional map of the moon appeared. She zoomed in so that all present could see from a twenty mile radius of the cavern system. Sixteen miles due east was a small compound. She zoomed in on the area.

"This men, is the target. You will be taking two scout mechs, and a transport. You will need four snipers. The rest of you will be using normal assault rifles. However you will be using a special type of ammo. The ammo superheats on impact, melting through the thick hide and skeletal system of the Calendrea. The only sure way to kill them in one hit is with a shot to the eye. Otherwise you'll need to hit them several times. The bullets are also .60 caliber rounds for your weapons, the snipers will be using .80 caliber rounds. Remember that the enemy is cold blooded, meaning that they won't show up on infrared scanners. All weapons must be silenced. Likewise take a combat knife. Davis will be in command on the field, follow his orders to the letter, he has more experience then all of you put together.

Once geared up they loaded into the truck, one man climbed into an agile scout mech. Two hours later they arrived at the drop off point. The mech moved out ahead and circled the compound, black and silent, it wasn't spotted, it spotted four guard towers, a thick paracrete wall with spot lights mounted at regular intervals. A generator sat a few feet from the inside of the wall. Sentries patrolled the outside of the wall. The mech returned and the man climbed out. Davis and the other men climbed out of the truck.

The snipers took up positions on all four sides, the rest of the men broke into four squads of three, one for each side. Davis loaded an EMP grenade into the under barrel of his gun and fired. It arced into the compound, seconds later the lights went dead.

"Remember men take out the sentries silently, use your knives if you can. Try not to be seen, we are ghosts men." With that he raced forward, drawing his knife and slinging his rifle over his shoulder. He slid up behind the Calendrea guard and stabbed the knife into its brain stem. It slid to the ground silently, he flipped it over and stabbed it in the eye three times to be sure it was dead. He wiped the knife off and slid it into its scabbard. His men all signaled in when they took out their targets, he heard sharp cracks as the snipers took out the guards in the towers. He and the other squad leaders pulled out a shaped explosive and placed it on the wall. As soon as the explosives were placed they moved a safe distance away. The charges blew, sending debris flying into the compound. Davis fired a smoke grenade inside and as soon as the smoke rose he and his men ran inside shouldering their rifles. He brought his gun up and fired a burst of rounds into a Calendrea soldiers head, sending green skin, orange blood, and brain matter flying. His men took up positions on either side of him. He heard a roar on his left and saw a giant Calendrea charge his men, one was crushed by its sheer bulk, Davis dove out of the way. He stood and saw his last squad mate fire a whole clip into the brute as it closed in on him. It's tail flashed out and decapitated the soldier. It turned towards Davis. He threw down his rifle and drew his knife, crouching down in a fighters stance. The beast charged him and he rolled between its legs. As he rolled he brought the knife up between its legs, digging deep into its muscle. He used the momentum of his roll to propel himself back onto his feet, he whirled around on the ball of his right foot and leapt onto the beasts back. He wrapped one arm around its neck and stabbed it in the back of its head, where it connected with its spine. It roared and slammed him against a wall, his vision dimmed and some of his ribs broke but he still hung on, it tried to stab him with its bladed tail but it missed his head by an inch, burying itself in its broad back. It roared in pain, and Davis brought the knife down on the base of its tail six times before cutting through, his blade was now coated in thick orange blood. The creature was now bleeding from multiple wounds. The blood coating his arm made it difficult to hold on, and it managed to throw him, he hit a wall hard and it took him a moment to recover. It charged him again, this time he dove to the left and cut the tendon connecting its knee to its femur. He ran a few feet away and the beast turned slowly, limping due to its new injury. He charged it and feigned to the left, then ducked right spinning so that he was behind it again. He leapt onto it's back again, latching on with one arm. He stabbed it repeatedly, search for the jugular, or carotid artery. After six attempts his blade slashed through the carotid artery. As he pulled out the blade a thick stream of blood gushed from the wound, he leapt off of its back and landed hard. He watched as the creature clawed at its neck, trying to staunch the flow of blood, within four minutes the blood slowed and its knees buckled, it then fell over dead lying face first in a pool of blood. He felt someone's hands lift him up and he turned around to see one of his men.

"Sir that was the single most amazing thing I've ever seen."

"Yeah, but I'm gonna regret that in the morning." He said as his vision went black and he passed out.

Davis recovered from his injuries a few weeks later. By that time Kathleen had formulated a plan to drive back the enemy.

"Alright men, we have four targets this time, three of which are only meant to draw the enemy from the main target. Davis you'll lead the men to take the main target. If all works as planned, the simultaneous attacks should force the main target to send reinforcements to the other targets, leaving the main base open to attack."

Arlana had her men from a noose around the compound, she had twenty combat mechs under her command, as the other assault leaders radioed in that they where in position she issued the order to attack. The mechs opened fire by launching hundreds of rockets, and opening up with their Gatling guns. Her men opened fire, firing grenades, and a hail of bullets, this scene was carried out at the other two targets.

Davis watched as an army of Calendrea loaded into land transports and drop ships. As soon as they were out of sight, his mechs opened fire on the giant base. Rockets blew apart buildings, walls, and everything else that they hit. Once they ran out, his army ran at the target, the mechs just behind the men. As they leapt over what was left of the outer wall a brute smashed into a group of men, a mech raced forward and grappled with it, it's hip mounted Gatling guns ripping into its mid rift, the mech pulled up ripping the brute in half. Davis turned away and continued to race forward. He shot a sentry as it peeked its head around a corner, it's head exploding in a mist of orange blood. Within ten minutes the fight was over. Davis had lost fifteen infantry men, and two mechs. The Calendrea lost over a hundred soldiers. The other assault groups faired just as well, even with the Calendrea reinforcements.

Four months past, filled with minor skirmishes. One day Davis walked into the com center.

"Sir, come take a look at this, I'm getting a signal, it is coming from the edge of the system." Davis walked over and took a look. He recognized the signature within the signal.

"Get Kathleen in here now!"

"Yes sir."

Ten minutes later Kathleen rushed into the room.

"Davis, what's wrong?"

Davis looked at her and smiled. "Nothing is wrong. Erick, send a message to the source of that signal."

Erick did as he was told and within three minutes the console lit up.

"Sir, incoming message!"

"Activate the intercom, and patch it through." A human admiral appeared on screen.

"Ah it's good to see we have some people still alive on world."

"And it's good to see that you got our drones. We've managed to drive the Calandrea back into the main city, but Alma Portus is too heavily fortified for a direct assault by ourselves."

"You have done well, but now the cavalry has arrived!"

Within a month the Alliance once again had control over the system, the final battle for Alma Portus cost many lives, but the brave men and women who had fought the Calendrea occupation were made heroes.

Davis looked at Kathleen and the other leaders standing beside him on the platform.

Admiral Luke Perry hung a medal around each of their necks. When he got to Davis he opened a box and drew out three medals, the first was the medal of valor, the second was the Purple Heart, and third was the  Medal of Honor, which had not been issued in over two hundred years.

"Scott Davis, for your part in the liberation of Alma, in leading the brave men and women under you in grueling combat, and for the battles you won, I present you with the Medal of Honor. As I understand it you defeated a Calendrea brute in single combat, whereas entire squads are known to fall to them. For these things you are a hero to the Alliance, and I offer you a chance to rejoin the Marines as a Colonel." Tears filled Davis's eyes.

"I'm honored by your decision, but I can't except this. The men who I lead, the men who died where the heroes, not me. They were the best of the best. They deserve these medals, the men who died to take back their home, not me. Soldiers like Eleana Sotari, John O'Harris, all who died to save each and every one of us. Give them these medals, not us, not me." With that Davis turned away and stepped off the dais. Kathleen and the other leaders also handed back their medals and followed him. The entered the space port. Kathleen grabbed Davis by the shoulder and spun him around. As he looked at her she kissed him. He relaxed and took her into his arms. Then he backed away and they climbed into a lift.

As soon as they had left everyone cheered, people watched the ceremony all over the galaxy. None who watched had a dry eye, even the hardest of hearts broke and wept. Within  four years a memorial was erected, and engraved on it where the names of all who had died. A statue stood on the memorial. It was of Davis and Kathleen leading the charge on Alma Portus. A plaque was placed on the memorial and it read:

"This statue has been placed in honor of the heroes of Alma, those who died to defend their home, and to their brave leaders, Scott Davis and Kathleen Waller who were married two years after the liberation of Alma. Your sacrifices shall not be forgotten."

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