by R. Frink
An epic tale of 5 soldiers involved in a war between humanity and a powerful alien race.
Chapter I: Fly Me to the Moon
Moon’s Surface – Dome 1
She watched the battle through the scope of a rifle. The sterile artificial air left a bad taste in her mouth as she focused on providing cover for her men. This battle wasn’t going as well as planned. Although the casualties where low, her group was slowly being pushed back.
Her hands steadied, her form perfect, and before the droplet of sweat fell from her brow, she pulled the trigger. Another enemy combatant laid slain on the ground, brain matter spilled around his head. The aftershock of the recoil and noise were second nature to her.
She laid on her belly on top of a grey rocky edge. Below her, was a mass of confusion with gunshots echoing in all directions and soldiers kicking up dust. She blinked out the irritating dust in her eyes before eliminating another soldier. The small communicator in her ear suddenly flared with the voices of the soldiers below.
“We could really use more cover down here!” Came a muffled cry. For a moment, she rested her long sniper rifle against the ground and lifted her hand to touch the small circular device in her ear.
“I’m doing the best I can!” the woman retorted, raising her voice above the gunfire. “Just hang in there a little longer.”
She lifted her weapon and took aim, quickly killing another soldier. A loud explosion pained her ears, causing her to drop her weapon to cover them. When the ringing stopped she looked into the distance to see two large mechanical forms approaching her and her men.
“Bloodkris…” she muttered, eyes wide. The horrific metal creatures were hunched with thick round backs that concealed thousands of ammunition rounds and missiles. The heads of these machines were oval shaped with long glassy strips stretching across the front. Two luminescent red lights moved around like eyes within the strip, providing sight for the pilot. Jutting from the sides were two arms each with three claws at the end. Inside the middle of the “hands” of the Bloodkris, were gun chambers where a seemingly endless amount of bullets sprayed from. Their legs were built much like the hind legs of an animal which gave them an ideal amount of maneuverability.
Quickly, the woman picked up her gun and repositioned herself. Through the scope, she searched for a weakness in the monsters’ hard shells. Although she knew her weapon wouldn’t do much damage, she shot at the joints. A sudden gust of wind directed her attention upwards tossing her purple hair all around. Hovering over her head was a large silver transport ship.
“General!” a voice in her communicator yelled. “We got a special delivery for ya!”
The ship remained stationed in the air as a large compartment revealed itself underneath the ship. A platform began its descent as a crane from within the plane lowered it to the ground. On top of the platform was a 50 foot tall bipedal robot lying on its back with sleek dark purple armor. Clutched into titanium hands of the robot was a large rifle that matched the armor of the robot.
“Cronus…” the woman whispered to herself as she watched the platform rest firmly onto the ground. She wasted no time in getting to her new weapon. She climbed to the robot's chest where she pulled a hatch to pop the door to the cockpit open and jumped inside. Once settled into the chair, her fingers reached over her shoulder where she pulled the seat belt and buckled so that the straps formed an ‘x’ over her waist and torso while each foot rested on a pedal used to control the robot’s legs. Her hands then glided over the arm chairs where the controls embedded in front of her. She placed her hands firmly on the crystal blue sphere shaped controls on each side of the chair, causing the machine to come alive almost immediately. A red line scanned up and down both hands and accepted her fingerprints. Three large screens lit up upon accepting her as the pilot.
“Amethyst to Apla Unit, retreat!” she commanded through her communication unit.
“Rodger that,” came a muffled reply.
She pressed a blue button on the control panel, and the machine jerked to life. Her feet pressed the pedals which turned the mech to face her opponents. She pressed another button on the panel which caused crosshairs to appear on the front screen and lock-on the approaching Bloodkris. Her right hand twisted on the crystal blue sphere, and the robot raised the rifle. Her hand squeezed the control, and a shot of pure energy came forth from the gun and hit the Bloodkris underneath the head. The hunched machine fell to the ground with sparks flying. Within a few seconds, the enemy machine exploded, shaking the ground. The crosshairs moved to the second target, and her hand moved on the control once more, bringing down a second Bloodkris. From her seat, she watched the enemy retreat and knew the battle had been won.
Lunar Orbit – Main Hanger
“Fawn!” Cried a young male’s voice as the woman hopped down from her machine. Before she could say anything, she was enveloped in a tight embrace, by a blonde man wearing a white lab coat. Fawn smiled gently and returned the man’s affection. After a few moments, the man pulled away and adjusted his glasses.
“You were amazing; I saw everything in the command center,” the man commented, his bright green eyes gleamed with excitement.
“I’m glad you were impressed! Thanks for getting Cronus to me in time!”
“How did the controls feel? They were probably a bit clunky, weren’t they? I haven’t had time to refine them. How about the lock-on mechanism? Is it on target or should I tighten it a little? And what about-"
“Whoa, slow down. Everything was working fine, and they’ll be plenty of time to work out any bugs.”
The man placed a hand behind his head and smiled sheepishly. “I’m sorry. It's the first time the Dragoon model has been in a real combat situation, and I want everything to be perfect.”
Fawn placed a hand on the man’s cheek. “I know, Data. You’re doing a great job.”
A loud mechanical noise interrupted their conversation. The two turned their heads to see one of the hangar doors slowly opening to let in an enormous blue and white battle cruiser.
“Ah, they’ve arrived,” Data stated.
“The Hero’s Legend, it’s a new ship commissioned for the Dragoon Special Forces program,” Data explained. Fawn and Data watched as the belly of ship opened and several of the ship’s crewmen walked out.
A man and a woman approached them from the cruiser, both wearing well decorated blue and black uniforms. The woman was tall; her jet-black hair was pulled into a tight bun behind her head. Her mahogany eyes twinkled with mirth and held a passionate depth to them. She was very beautiful and possessed dark flawless skin, full lips, and a shapely figure. The man following her also possessed great beauty, his form tall, slender and elegant. His dark-green locks were brushed back from his pale skin so that his soft and handsome features were on display for all to see. His violet gaze held a similar one as the woman’s but with more intensity.
“It’s been a long time, Amethyst,” the woman greeted with a small smile on her face. She held out her hand whom Fawn took eagerly took.
“It sure has, General Alverdine, is it?” Fawn replied, smiling at the use of her old codename.
“Yes, a new rank for a new war,” Alverdine stated as she released her old comrade’s hand. Fawn directed her attention to the man standing behind Alverdine.
“And how are you, General Kyros?” Fawn asked affectionately. Kyros’ lips formed into a small smile but remained silent. Fawn’s brown eyes returned to Alverdine’s. “He hasn’t changed a bit.”
“Please tell me you’re the skilled pilot I’m getting for my crew,” Alverdine said.
Fawn shook her head. “Afraid not. I’m actually moving to Data’s ship, Joshua. It’s been too long since I’ve spent some real time with my fiancé.” Her head motioned towards Data, who placed a hand on her shoulder.
Alverdine raised an eyebrow. “Oh, fiancé, eh?” She turned to face Data and held out her hand. “I don’t think we’ve formally met.”
“No, but I’ve heard a lot about you. You’re a legend from the First War,” Data commented as he shook the woman’s hand.
“And you’re the wiz behind the Dragoon model. You’ve done a real good job there, from what I hear.”
“Thank you and don’t worry, your new star pilot will be here shortly,” Data informed.
“I’m glad to see you made it here without incident,” spoke a new voice. The group turned around to see a middle aged brown-haired man approach them. The contours of his face were sharp, and he stared back at the group with hardened sky-blue eyes.
“General Connal!” Fawn exclaimed, surprised to see her superior officer. Her arm moved quickly to form a salute.
“At ease, I came to congratulate you on your success with Cronus and welcome our guests,” the general explained with a deep, warm voice.
Fawn lowered her salute. “Thank you sir.”
“I will miss having you as a pilot,” Connal commented. His eyes wandered to Alverdine and Kyros. “General Alverdine, General Kyros, how fast the years go by.”
“Indeed, old friend,” Alverdine replied. Kyros only smiled as Connal placed a hand on each of their shoulders.
“Come, let me show you around Lunar Orbit, and then we’ll discuss the re-supplying and new orders for the Hero’s Legend,” Connal commented as he escorted the two away.
Fawn watched silently as she watched her friends disappear. “There must truly be a long war ahead of us if they called those two out of retirement,” she said solemnly.
A soft hand fell on top on her short curly purple locks. “You must be hungry. Let’s get something to eat.”
The woman smiled at the offer. The two began to walk towards the cafeteria hand in hand. Fawn squeezed her fiancé’s hand, these moments when the two of them could just be with each other without their obligations getting in the way became scarcer with the Second War escalating.
“Oh hey, when is your brother getting here?” Fawn asked, breaking the small moment of silence.
“Phoenix should be arriving in a few hours.”
“Oh,” Fawn purred as she squeezed his hand again. A seductive smile formed on her lips as she began to think of all the ways that time could be spent.
Sector 2 – Zone 2
Green eyes peered into the screen as he waited for the ship to release him. He leaned back inside the cockpit of the Komodo Z-17, a battle machine several years dated. A sudden jerk caused the young pilot to squeeze the joystick-like controls harder. Nervousness crept up his spine; he had never fought in space before, only went through several simulations on Earth. As his luck would have it, when the transport ship was attacked he was the only pilot on board.
The hatch to the ship’s small hangar opened and revealed the dark vastness of space to the young pilot. A bright light streaked by, and the pilot realized it was one of the enemies circling the ship. He pushed the controls of his suit forward and left the ship in a burst of speed. There were three enemy suits all together, two Specter models and one he had never seen before. The unknown mech looked strange, its crystal blue armor almost organic, the surface appearing to be populated by scales.
The blonde pilot pressed a button in front of him, which caused a set of red crosshairs to lock-on to the left Specter. His hand pressed a red button on the right joystick which caused to the Komodo to reach to a compartment in its side and pull out a medium-length sword. A layer of blue energy spread over the sharp metal and within seconds, the Specter was sliced in half. The two halves of the machine floated for a moment, the severed area sparkling before exploding.
The pilot of the unknown mech gazed on with a mixture of shock and awe. He had never seen a Komodo model dispatch one of his teammates so quickly. The grey and dated mech hastily changed direction and went after the second Specter with a raised sword. The Specter pulled out its own weapon; a spear with energy coated at the tip, and blocked the Komodo’s mid-range sword. With its initial attack blocked; the Komodo pushed back from its opponent and circled around, striking from behind. The second Specter exploded leaving only the unknown model, and the Komodo left.
“Impressive…” the pilot of the strange mech muttered. Before the words left his mouth, he witnessed the Komodo charging towards his suit. At the last moment, he steered his suit to dash to the right.
The young pilot swiped a bead of sweat that tickled down his forehead underneath his long bangs. This opponent was faster than the previous two. The mysterious suit stood still before him as if waiting for his next move. He tilted the controls back and the Komodo shot strait up in the air. With haste, he twirled the Komodo around and dived down, aiming his sword at the mech’s head. His opponent once again moved to the side before the energy blade could hit him. The blonde pilot cursed under his breath and turned the Komodo around without slowing to try a more directed approach. He pushed harder on the controls, increasing the speed and the g-forces on his body. The Komodo’s blade shifted to aim for the abdomen of the opponent’s machine.
The other pilot witnessed the lightning fast reflexes of his foe with amusement. To counter, his mech reached to its back and pulled out a short metal rod. A stream of energy poured from the tip of the rod and with a sharp vertical slash motion, the stream acted like a whip. The energy easily severed the arm of the Komodo that was wielding the sword and its pilot was left defenseless.
His hands quivered and his green eyes wide with shock. With a gulp, he regained control of himself and used the remaining arm of his Komodo to reach in a compartment in its leg and grab a small rifle. He pulled the Komodo away from the enemy and began shooting.
“There’s still fight in him,” the enemy pilot mused, a small smirk coming to his lips. “It’s like fighting Aphrodite and Adonis again.”
The unknown mech followed the Komodo and used the energy whip to knock out the gun in its hand, destroying the gun and hand at the same time. Quickly, the enemy pilot closed the distance between the two mechs. His mech suit grabbed the head of the Komodo thwarting any plans of escape. With the Komodo in his clutches, the other pilot opened a communication link between the two suits.
“Tell me UEF pilot, are you frightened?” he asked.
The Komodo’s pilot glared at the enemy mech, angry at his defeat. “Why are you playing with me?”
The enemy pilot remained silent and waved his mech whip slightly to wrap around the Komodo’s body, electrifying the suit and its pilot. Before the world became dark, the young pilot could only think of his older brother waiting for him on Lunar Orbit