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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/1835865-The-Machine
by brom21
Rated: ASR · Short Story · Other · #1835865
An old space soldier recalls the account of a massive alien ambush from space.
There's no other way to tell the story.It was blatant genocide. I remember it quite clearly. It was the year 3016 A.D. I was stationed on the outpost planet of Thyrus. A large human colony had existed there for about half a century. It was also a secret base unknown to the Nepheseers, or so we though. Me and my fellow astro soldiers had been at war with them for hundreds of years. We thought the small planet with its two moons and a white dwarf sun was a safe place to secretly observe their actions. The planet itself was in the Nepheseer's sector of space, but was hidden inside a vast nebulae. From months of spying, we learned that they were constructing a device the size of a very small moon. We had yet to learn it's function. Then on one routine recon mission to secretly discover its purpose, it was too late. That night the massive, cylindrical machine revealed a propulsion engine that emerged out of the hull. It was headed straight for us! We were surprised how they somehow located our lookout planet through the radioactive activity that was in the nebulae. The ship must have been integrated with very advanced sensors in order to be able to penetrate through all the interference of the gaseous body. The ship was coming to the planet at great speed. I clearly remember everything that was said that night as doom approached.

"We have to get the colonists to safety!," I heard Major Watson yell.

"Major, the ship will each the planet in less than thirty minutes!" I said "There's no time to evacuate either."

"We have to disable the ship's weapon relays. Can you do a scan of the vessel and locate them.?" he asked me.

"Its going to quick, I can't lock on the sensors!"

They had us in an apparent checkmate, yet we still tried to think up a possible escape plan. Then, in the sky we saw its huge elongated form loom over our planet. Pandemonium broke out among the colonists as officials tried to retain order with commands that the terrified people were not reacting to. Then the colossal, metal beast then stopped in orbit over Thyrus. I immediately took advantage of the stationary enemy ship and scanned for its weapon relays. It took a mere few minutes.

"Major, I've located its weapon locations!" I showed him my screen with a blueprint display of the ship with its weapons highlighted in flashing red. The scan showed three turrets within the ship in the central area that were not yet deployed.

"Get every attack vessel into space and disable the weapons!"ordered Major Watson.

Pilots hastily entered the V-ships armed with neutron missiles and particle lasers. Whether they were formidable enough to accomplish the task, was doubtful. Hundreds of ships zoomed into space creating a loud roar from simultaneous engine firings.

"Attention all pilots:Assemble yourselves into three squadrons. Attack the three weapon turrets in a single wave on each side of the ships rounded enclosure."Major Watson ordered.

Then the turrets of the behemoth started to come out of long hatch compartments that were opening up on the three sides of the ship. Instantly the attack vessels unleashed all their firepower at the turrets. Suddenly the squadrons were ambushed by a fleet of enemy space probes. The captain of one of the three squadrons reported to the Major via intercom.

"Major were under attack from enemy reinforcements! And the ship looks like its going to fire imminently!"

The last part of my story was the horrible climax that will forever be burned into my memory. As our fighters were attempting to destroy the main weapons, they suddenly started to power up. As I observed the energy charge its cannons, they looked like three bright stars in the heavens. An eruption from above exploded like a supernova and struck the planet surface destroying an area of one-hundred square. Thousands of lives were instantly lost within seconds.

I spoke with terror in my voice to the Major. "We have to leave. Its hopeless. The next blast will come within minutes. The colonists can't be evacuated in time. There's no other option." I saw the expression of the Major. A look of failure and defeat was in his eyes. He calmly answered me. "You go. A was assigned to this planet. It's fate was always in my hands. The captain always goes down with the ship. I'm ordering you to leave." I looked at him with sadness but also respect. I made my way from the control station and headed down the central corridor to the hanger and entered a small shuttle. I strapped myself in and blasted toward the sky and into space. I steered my ship away from the battle and I watched as the gigantic ship obliterated the planet. Over half a million lives were lost. Now, along with about fifty other soldiers who manged to escape, I have retired to Earth ten years later. It pains me but there's no other way to tell the story.

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