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Orphan Company (Sci-fi Char RP|IC|Open)

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Dyelli Beybi
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Civil Rights Lovefest

Orphan Company (Sci-fi Char RP|IC|Open)

Postby Dyelli Beybi » Tue Jun 01, 2021 8:23 am

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Co-OPed by Arengin Union, Bingellia, Europa Undivided and Khasinkonia


Welcome to Orphan Company, a character RP set in the year 2137. In this RP you will play the role of a one of the few free human survivors in the aftermath of a brutal alien invasion, or one of their friendly alien allies.

Nine years ago earth was invaded and overrun by a seemingly unstoppable foe from outside of the Milky Way, humanity was ill prepared and the few survivors fled underground where a few small settlements have been established in the tunnels under earth's fallen cities. However, humanity was not alone. A coalition of other races, the 'Federation of Civilised Worlds' are resisting the invasion.

While humanity was never a part of the Federation, anyone lucky enough to get off earth has generally ended up in Federation Space where most people capable of lifting a blaster have joined the 'Orphan Company' (actually a Division sized unit, despite the name), a force of volunteers from Earth and other displaced communities who are determined to stem the tide and, one day, take back their homes. Your character is a member of Company A of the 6th Light Infantry Battalion, one of the best in the Federation. For the purposes of your app, assume that your character is a Corporal unless I tell you otherwise: in some scenes you might be on the front lines in command of a fire team of disposable redshirts, in others you might be part of an elite group behind enemy lines with just the other writers. Not entirely realistic, but hopefully good fun!

The RP is set in the Andromedaverse universe, though there is no requirement for you to have read any of it or even have the faintest idea what it is about.

Finally, this RP is open to latecomers. If you want to join a bit late, we'll just assume you are a private soldier who just got a promotion for some act of bravery.




Two Days Ago...



Rebecca Cohen ducked under the camouflaged tent's entryway, offering a swift salute the the blue-skinned officer inside. He saluted back, "At ease Cohen."

General Shrandat was tall by Inuv standards. Very tall for a human. At 6'6'' he towered over Cohen by just over a foot. He motioned at the map he had spread across the folding table in the middle of the tent. Yes, they lived in a world where you could have a holographic display with pieces moving in real time and some commands had that, but sometimes it was easier to carry an old fashioned paper map. It folded up into your pocket and worked even if the Ragons bombed the power station.

Rebecca stepped forward, glancing down at the map. It was a highly detailed topographical map of the land to the West of Saridat, the Berdikon capital city that was currently the front line of the war for the Milky Way. Shrandat had taken a big blue pen to it, marking lines and circling areas of importance. It looked like a shambles, though she knew half the information would be held inside the general's head, "Front line Sir?" she half-asked, half-stated, "Where do you want the Sixth?"

Shrandat didn't answer the question right away, instead, drawing his line across what appeared to be a wide valley, perhaps two miles across, that Rebecca deduced was the Orphan's section of the front. He finished on a hill which he tapped, "Hill 7382. We want you there spotting for the artillery we have dug in here," he tapped another position behind the crest of the hill.

"That's a little further forward than I'd position that battery," Rebecca remarked.

"It is," Shrandat smiled, a smile that tweaked up the corner of his thin dark moustache, "We expect the Ragons to start the battle by launching a series of probing attacks across the line. They will find that the hills on either flank of the valley are strongly defended, but that the brigades positioned in the valley itself are less experienced and form a weak spot in the line. Naturally they will seek to exploit this weakness, but they will also be concerned about the potential for an encirclement. So they will push against the 6th, and discover that they are fighting a single battalion sized unit with artillery support. They will find a similar situation on the other side. They may decide to neutralise the batteries, but then they will, if all goes according to plan, focus their attack on the centre."

Rebecca nodded, having some idea of where this was going, "The artillery is a ruse?" she suggested.

That got a nod in return, "Your actual task is to keep the Ragons from breaking out of the valley. If they attempt to move up they will be vulnerable to enfilading fire from your position and units have been instructed to give ground by retreating out of the valley where possible. When the time is right, we will move our reserve armour along the reverse slope and attempt a double envelopment of whatever units have pushed into the valley. Do not expect any reinforcements until that point. We don't want tip them to the fact we have any to supply. So expect things to get desperate. I of course have the utmost faith in you and your troops," he paused, before adding with a slight smile, "Consider it a punishment for a job well done in the past."




Chapter One: The Battle Of Saridat
(Click here for theme music)



Hill 7382

"What took you guys so long!" one of the engineers called as the troops from the 6th made their way up the hill, carting their gear on their backs.

It was a well fortified position. With three lines of reinforced trenches built in a circle around the crest of the hill where someone, presumably a human, had hung a banner that read '¡No pasarán!'. They shall not pass. Federation High Command had sent an order to all units earlier that day:

'No retreat. No surrender. We hold them here.'

The humans in the Orphan Company had seized on that and 'they shall not pass' was getting scrawled on walls, vehicles and home made banners in as many languages as were spoken. The order wasn't pure propaganda either. If the Ragon ground forces could destroy or, worse, capture the Saridat batteries it would make the position of the fleet in orbit untenable and if Greskia had to be abandoned then it would be a catastrophic blow for the Federation's war effort. Conversely though, the Ragons were clearly running out of steam.

As if to punctuate that point there were a sudden series of explosions in the sky, dull rumbles by the time they reached the trenches below, "Ragon flyers," someone called, pointing in the direction of a number of grey dots on the horizon. A few moments later there was the boom of a squadron of Federation fighters as the streaked over Hill 7382 on an intercept course, leaving long vapour trails in their wake.

In the first battles the Orphans had fought in, the Ragons had enjoyed easy air superiority, but now... they still downed two Federations aircraft for every one they lost, but they just didn't seem able to replace them. From the handful of prisoners the Federation had taken, it seemed that the shortage was manpower rather than equipment, though that was hard to confirm; getting good information from inside Ragon held space was difficult at best.

"Everyone get into cover!" Cohen called from the front of the column. Despite her size, Cohen had quite a voice on her. If they were here to bomb the position then it would be better not to be caught out in the open.

Aside from the trenches there were a series of bunkers that offered some degree of cover. Cohen dropped down into the nearest trench, navigating her way towards the central bunker which she had already marked out for her headquarters, leaving everyone else to get themselves into position. They had a few moments to set up, position sentries and maybe have a quick chat to the person next to them, but all too soon battle would be joined, once again...

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Nachfolgia
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Postby Nachfolgia » Tue Jun 01, 2021 4:09 pm

Joel Rimbaut


Once again, Joel had found himself climbing a hill. Another battle, another hill to climb. The human from Louisiana had climbed plenty of hills in his life, some were peaceful, others not so much. From his time in the Marine Corps until now, he had ascended plenty of hills during combat and his one was no different. Normally, he would be alone or with his spotter,  not pseudo marching with his entire unit, but these were dire times. He was in a war against an alien species that has wiped out most human life back on Earth. With such a shock to normalcy, Joel didn't mind the company he had.

Joel was towards the middle of the line of soldiers, his blaster rifle, a gift from the Federation , in front of his body. He wore an ghillie suit for the current terrain, but with a special surprise underneath. Strapped to his uniform in various locations, were circular disks that were Federation origin. The disks, for reasons still new to Joel, masked his body heat from the infrared tech of the Ragons. Unfortunately, this tech wasn't as advanced as the would have liked. The drawback was that it only masked him if he was laying still. Perfect for a sniper, but getting to his position was the dangerous part. Still, Joel was grateful for the Federation giving him the tech.

Then there was the tool of his line of business, the sniper rifle. Slung over his back was the Federation's sniper variant of the Mk LVII blaster rifle. While significantly lighter than anything he carried on Earth, it packed just as much punch as he had learned back in his first battle in the Federation. Joel may miss his M14 DMR from his Corps days, the rifle was a good killer of Ragons which is all he needed.

As the Unit crested the hill where the fortifications where, Joel could be heard singing the Marine Corps hymn, just loud enough for the rest of the soldiers to here. Back in his old unit, 1/1, he'd be called a " boot" or a " Motard" for singing it. Nowadays, it kept his spirits up and was a way for him to honor his fallen brothers and sisters. Joel could see the battle put in the distance from the hill. Smoke was billowing into the air and the muffled booming of explosions thumped in his chest.

Unfortunately, the group didn't get a chance to take in much of the " peaceful" scenery as several Ragon flyers were inbound towards the hill. As a response,  their commanding officer, Rebecca Cohen, gave the order to take cover. The woman never skipped a beat.

" Well...looks like this is the hill we die on today, Ladies and Gents. Let's give 'em hell!" Joel exclaimed in a rather thick Cajun accent. He then took up position inside the trenches. Much to his dismay, there was no good vegetation to hide in due to the construction of the battlelines. Still, the trench will offer him some cover from blaster rifle. He set down his standard blaster next to him and unslung his sniper rifle and readied himself to fire it.

" Clementine, girl. It's time to do some work." Joel said as he look led through the scope.

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Demencia
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Postby Demencia » Tue Jun 01, 2021 5:52 pm

Requiem for a Ragon
Kirolo


Unlike the other members of the team, the trip up the hill wasn't particularly challenging for Kirolo. Its anti-grav generators made the journey a leisurely float instead of a physically demanding trek. The weight of the multiple weapons only required an adjustment in the field strength, and it was like they were not strapped across the Akatir's back at all.

Once in the trenches, they began a meticulous, almost ritualistic process of checking each gun. Three at a time, the automatic rifles were inspected. Despite being given the option to replace all of them with more effective model, Kirolo only took two of the Mk LVII blasters, as they preferred the volume of fire of the LVI rather than the slower but more damaging blasters.

While they were finishing the last set of rifles, the aerial battle began to draw closer. The Akatir didn't even seem to flinch, though its voice echoed in the minds of everyone nearby. "With annoyance. They could at least wait until this one is finished with its calibrations." Kirolo placed the weapons on their back and drifted slightly closer to the ground in the trench.

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Europa Undivided
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Europa Undivided » Tue Jun 01, 2021 6:04 pm

Ivan, son of Ivan
Greskia
The Frontline


Rastsvetali yabloni i grushi,
Poplyli tumany nad rekoy;
Vykhodila na bereg Katyusha,
Na vysokiy bereg, na krutoy.

Vykhodila, pesnyu zavodila
Pro stepnogo, sizogo orla,
Pro togo, kotorogo lyubila,
Pro togo, ch'i pis'ma beregla.

Oy, ty pesnya, pesenka devich'ya,
Ty leti za yasnym solntsem vsled,
I boytsu na dal'nem pogranich'e
Ot Katyushi pereday privet.


Ivan found himself quietly singing the lyrics of a song of his long lost homeland as the short respite between the fighting settled in, imagining someone doing the instruments right beside him in a fit of homesickness. Ironic, given that he never actually got down to Russia when he went to Earth for the first and hopefully not the last time. Instead, he found himself stuck under the subways of New York, and... a lot has happened since then. Davin betraying them, Hannah and Jean dying, and so, so much more. It's cold comfort, but at least he's with likeminded people now.

When they had broken through, Ivan had been one of those that wrote his own variation of 'They shall not pass' on it. There quite a few other Cyrillic letters there, so he wrote alongside those, furiously scribbling Они не пройдут with a nearly can of crimson spray paint as the Orphan Company continued to advance to the area. And now, it begins, once again. They're here.

Marching up unto the hill, Ivan quickly slid into the trench, followed by a squad of privates. Coughing at the dirt of the dugout, Ivan locked in another cartridge into his blaster rifle, a weapon that the Federation had been so gracious to give to the 6th Light Infantry. These were far better than anything the humans have built, and could even punch through the scales of the beast. He had named his own gun Irina, going as far as paint the name on the gun's barrel. She was a trusty thing, just like good old Yashcheritsa.

"Not one step back." Ivan whispered to himself, echoing the words of a certain dictator from two centuries ago. He didn't shudder as Ragon artillery bombarded into position, having been very used to those ever since he joined the Orphans. He was no stranger to loud explosions, either. Ivan then looked through the scope of his blaster, checking if there were advancing Ragon forces in the immediate vicinity. Didn't seem like it at the moment.

" Clementine, girl. It's time to do some work." Joel said as he look led through the scope.


"Clementine, huh." Ivan said to Joel as he too engrossed himself with the sights of his gun. "Um..."

Ivan sniffed. "I'm Ivan, from Triton." He said whilst not sounding too confidence with introductions. "And you are...?"
Futurist ~ Reformed ~ RPer~ #WritingCommunity ~ Asian ~ Trad ~ Troll ~ Discord: The Trollmaster General#7123
"FRESH AIR UPON MY SKIN IS LIKE THE FLENSING DAGGERS OF A THOUSAND THOUSAND MENIAL URCHINS GOING AT A SACK OF POTATOES. MY EXISTENCE IS FRAUGHT WITH FALLS AND POINTLESS ANGST IN THE MIDST OF THIS DISGUSTING REALITY. THE LIGHT BURNS! FOR I HAVE NEVER BEEN WORTHY TO WA-[bird noise]".

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Western Fardelshufflestein
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Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Western Fardelshufflestein » Tue Jun 01, 2021 9:37 pm

Mathis & Dylan Alfsen

"Shit!" Mathis dove to the side as a bit of rock someone else had dislodged streaked past him, narrowly missing his shoulder. He staggered forward and reached for the ground, struggling to regain his balance, then pushed himself to his feet as he continued clambering up the hill.

He noticed the members of his company freeze, felt the eyes of Dylan boring into him. She was bringing up the rear, and Mathis was near the front, directly behind Ioncio. Not that Ioncio was in any way valiant for being the vanguard; this was his punishment for insulting his commanding officers one time too many, for continually harassing her over something trivial. Technically, they were marching as part of the 6th Division as a unit; they were all supposed to be marching shoulder to shoulder, but of course they had ended up staggered due to the hill's steep incline. Mathis had ordered Ioncio to remain ahead. Although his lead was slight, it was still a lead, still a punishment--still a fulfillment of Mathis's promise.

"I'm fine. Keep going." He gritted his teeth, panting, readjusting his grip on his blaster. "Get to the top of the hill--"

A booming female voice carried over from the front of the column. "Everyone get into cover!" From here, about a third of the way from the end of the column, Cohen's command was faint. But her order was clear, if redundant.

"Yeah, what do you think we're doing?" scoffed Ajax, clearly nonplussed. He probably thought Mathis couldn't hear.

Mathis ignored him, kept pressing on as he concentrated on conserving his energy. He could not overexert himself on the trek to the bunker before the battle had even begun. Well, it was on the verge of beginning. There were Ragon flyers visible, at least from the front of the unit, based on the whispers that were traveling down the line; the inevitable, it seemed, was imminent.

They reached the peak of the hill within the next couple of minutes. After the grueling trek, being on level ground should have been a relief, but he could spy the Ragon flyers now. Zooming toward them from the horizon in a discrete line. If he stared at them any longer, he'd follow them until they were directly over the encampment, at which point he would be blasted to smithereens.

He pulled toward the front of their line once they entered the precinct of the camp and directed them to assume a position along the middle trench. He ducked, already bracing himself for incoming enemy fire, and dashed along the trench until he reached a random bunker. It looked like it'd have enough space and supplies to house their entire company, and, as long as each of them had enough space to lie down if two or three of them remained on watch.

"Adam, Ester, Ajax, scope out the bunker. You're going to take stock and establish communications with the central bunker, but remain on standby. Carlisle, Naphri, take up your positions at the entrance. Ioncio and I will cover you from behind." He observed from the corner of his eye Ioncio's visible discomfort, and felt a brief flash of satisfaction. Perhaps Ioncio would finally learn a little humility from having to stand guard, even if just for a few moments.

"I'll go do my thing." Dylan cast a mischievous smirk at her brother, palming her blaster rifle like it was some sort of metal pole. She strode confidently a little ways ahead of the bunker and scaled about halfway up the trench. Since she had the best eye, she often served as the lookout for the company, except for the few times Mathis had been on lookout so she could focus on hitting the Ragon targets.

She snorted as she checked her ammo, shaking her head in delighted anticipation. Unlike Mat, who saw this as more of a mission, she lived for the adrenaline rush of battle. Each Ragon death brought her a stab of joy, mostly from the thrill of successfully hitting her target.

"So I just keep watch outside until you cowards do all the dirty work." She was joking, of course, but she knew how to irritate her least favorite squad members, namely Ajax and Ioncio. Why did she and Mathis get stuck with them anyway? "I might get gunned down by Ragon fire, but then again, I might not. I might just resort to using someone else as a shield."

Giggling at her own joke, Dylan jumped down from the trench. The Ragons were strafing them, and, frankly, she did not want to get killed.

She headed for cover just as they came under fire, her guise of humor gone as she snapped into battle mode. Mathis gave her a high-five, even though she hadn't done anything, yet. "You know I just do that for fun, right?"

"Yeah. Stick your neck out, get a taste of the battle. But we both know I shouldn't be letting you do that. It could jeopardize the security of the squad."

"And seeing as I'm the best sharpshooter..."

"Losing you would be bad. But maybe this isn't the conversation to have when we're going to battle." Mathis broke off, turning his attention back to the matter at hand. "You all know what our objective here is, right?"

"We're not idiots, Corporal." Ajax grinned, showing off a rather stained and crooked set of teeth. "Keep 'em from advancing beyond the valley and hopefully not die."

"Exactly. Try not to die while we're being threatened by Ragon fliers and utilize our position in this base to fight them off." Mathis did his best not to look at Naphri, who was Berdikon. Her capital was being attacked, and here she was on the front lines, part of the mission that could be the only thing keeping Saridat from falling.

"They shall not pass," Mathis murmured under his breath, and grabbed his blaster to prepare for war.


"Say that again, Ioncio? I don't think the rest of the squad heard what you just told me." Dylan squared her shoulders, peering into the Inuv's crimson eyes and straightening her spine so she could intimidate him. "Unless, of course, it's not something you want to repeat."

Ioncio snorted, his arms crossed over his chest. "I don't take orders from some girl who thinks she can sleep around with anyone who's supposed to be with men."

"Excuse me?" Dylan was on the verge of seizing the Inuv by his neck and snapping it, consequences be damned. She knew she'd go through with it, too, had her brother not been her superior. "First of all, I don't 'sleep around.' I'm a virgin, because some of us have boundaries that we like to stick to, unlike you, who got it into your nonexistent brain that it was okay to verbally harass your commanding officers. You're lucky we're not in combat right now, because I swear to God I'd send you out to be Ragon bait."

"You'd really do that to me, Corporal? One of your own squad members?" Ioncio flung his hands up, the gall on that bastard, to play innocent as though everyone else wasn't watching intently. Well, everyone except for Mathis, who had gone off somewhere, presumably to a meeting Dylan was probably supposed to be at.

"Yeah, I'd do it to you. In a heartbeat if it meant you'd shut up." She was using human slang, something Ioncio would not necessarily understand, though he'd been around humans long enough to know some of their mannerisms. Like the fact that many of them had sexualities he might not deem the norm.

None of the other squad members were stepping in, but this was fine with Dylan. She could handle Ioncio well enough on her own.
Besides, they were supposed to be taking inventory, not bickering amongst themselves.

"Well, for a lesbian like yourself, I imagine caring about the men in our group is diff--"

She was onto him in a split second, her hands wrapped around his windpipe. She knew she was far out of line, but then again, so was he, and as long as she never got caught--.

"Look at me. Look at me, you son of a bitch. My sexuality is none of your damn business, and if it were, it would be if I were brain-dead enough to ever date you. I am your superior, and you will not disrespect me in this way ever. Again.
Understood?"

She wasn't cutting off his air, not really, just giving him a very significant scare. He'd had it coming for a long time. The prick had the audacity to antagonize almost everyone in the squad, even for the most ridiculous of things, and she'd frankly had more than enough of his poisonous attitude. He thought he could speak to her in this way just because she was different, because of something that she couldn't control. She hadn't asked to be born this way, and she wouldn't have it any other way, but God, she could not stand the thought of having to hear another word come from this freak's mouth.

"Can I give you some advice here, sweetheart?" For some reason, his Inuvian fighting instinct that would normally compel him to attack was being kept at bay. For now. Good thing he'd mastered training on that front, right?

"I don't take advice from someone whose ancestors blew up their own planet."

"Shame. Because you and I both know which of us looks like she's about to snap a fellow soldier's neck."

"I said, I don't take advice--"

"DYLAN! WHAT IN THE ACTUAL HELL!?" Dylan jerked her head to the side; Mathis was there, lividly sprinting toward her with his blaster thumping against his back. "ARE YOU TRYING TO KILL HIM? HE'S A MEMBER OF OUR OWN SQUAD, NOT A RAGON!" He pried her fingers off Ioncio's neck, dragging her away from the squad so he could blow up at her in peace.

"What are you doing!? You can't just threaten Ioncio, let alone try to strangle him! I don't care what he says, he's still a member of our squad, and we can take all of the worst disciplinary measures and file a disciplinary court, but if someone saw you--"

He glanced back toward the squad, who had ceased all activity and were acting like they were not eavesdropping. Only Carlisle was paying any attention to Ioncio, probably making sure the ingrate was still in good enough shape for combat. And punishment.

"--you could get in much worse trouble than Ioncio regardless of what nasty things he said. I will deal with him accordingly but--just'--"

"What? Stand by and let him bully me while dodging enemy fire? I've done that already, Mathis. He's obviously not going to change, he won't listen--"

"I am going to make him listen. But we're going to need to file a disciplinary report about this, and you're going to have to frame it so that it's not attempted murder, because if you were actually planning on killing him, Dylan, I swear--"

"Not. This time." Her eyes flashed darkly. Mathis suddenly felt like he was staring at a vicious creature, a being much deadlier and foreign to him than his own sister. A monster.

"Please don't make me have to lie on your behalf."

"You won't. Not anymore." She squared her shoulders. "I'm going to take a walk. When I get back, I'll be calmer." With that, Dylan stormed off, not offering any further explanation.

Mathis watched her trudge away, mildly horrorstricken by what he had just witnessed. He had seen Dylan kill in combat before, but...attacking one of their own? Even Ioncio? Mathis would love to give the guy a shakedown, everyone did, but he knew nothing would ever come of it. If anything, it would only make things worse, what with the risk of exciting the Inuvian into attacking him.

Steeling himself, he stalked over to where Ioncio was massaging his throat. His calm veneer was slipping, had already slipped, was gone. But he kept his voice even, his tone low, and he tried to speak at a volume that would not attract attention.

"Ioncio?"

The pair of beady red eyes he had grown to detest flicked toward him, wearing a guise of pain that Mathis knew was exaggerated.
He said nothing, for he was corned, an enemy trapped in a cell of his own making.

"This is the fifth time this week you have verbally abused your commanding officers. Remember what I said would happen the next time you stepped out of line?" He sounded patient, yet he was anything but. He'd had it up to here with Ioncio's unruly behavior, and, frankly, he wanted him off his squad. But he hadn't been able to approach Major Cohen about it because she'd been preoccupied with the upcoming battle.

Ioncio continued to be silent. This was a little game of his where he played all innocent despite everyone around him having already witnessed his deplorable behavior. Mathis pretended to take it as a sign that there was some good in him, but he'd really come to doubt there was any at this point.

He didn't even need to ask about the nature of what was said. Dylan's reaction told him more than enough. He knew what punishment was in order, and he did not feel the least bit guilty about giving it.

"I told you I would put you at the very front of our squad. I'd give you the most dangerous position, over and over, and I'd make you do the most undesirable tasks I can give. I know you enjoyed your stint in sanitation, but since that seemed to not have the desired effect, I'm going to request that I can assign you duties that are the most dangerous. And you know I stick to my word. I have spoken about this to you dozens of times, Ioncio, but you clearly either do not understand my warning or simply prefer to blatantly disregard it. If you survive this battle, I will have you expelled from this squad if possible and make sure all of my fellow officers know every minutia of your record."

Mathis felt his composure returning, bit by bit, and hoped Dylan was feeling the same. She was becoming more unhinged lately, or perhaps she was just stressed and infuriated for the way Ioncio treated her. He wasn't the only one, but he was by far the worst offender, and he had the fatal flaw of being directly under Mathis's control. Anything he said and did, Mathis would punish.

He waited for Ioncio to say something, anything, but as expected he did not. Cowards knew when they had been put in their place.
That was all Ioncio was--a coward--but by God he was a vicious one.

Mathis turned, then, to address the other five squad members. "Return to your duties," he ordered them in a flat tone. "I will be with you shortly. I just have to file another disciplinary report and hope it does not all blow up in my face." He gave Ioncio a false, terse smile, and beckoned for the Inuvian to follow him so he could get the precise details of what went down.

He'd ask Dylan, of course, since they'd need to fill it out together. And because Ioncio was hardly a reliable source in these matters.
Mathis should have written him up a few days ago, when he'd started calling Adam slurs, but he had not. Because he knew mere insults were not actionable. But this was, especially when taken as part of a cumulative pattern of behavior. That he'd compelled Dylan to snap was the final impetus, the sign that what reprimands he needed were those outside of Mathis's jurisdiction.
Last edited by Western Fardelshufflestein on Fri Jun 04, 2021 10:46 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Nagakawa
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Posts: 606
Founded: May 01, 2019
Left-wing Utopia

Postby Nagakawa » Wed Jun 02, 2021 8:27 pm

Yozo Inuma

The GH57-G2 sniper rifle was first introduced into service in 2071, and was used primarily by the special operations forces of the Japanese Army, particularly the ones stationed in its colonies, until it was finally phased out in 2120 in favour of the lighter and more compact GH57-G3.

Still, it was the G2 model with which former First Class Sergeant Yozo Inuma was most familiar, and so he stubbornly continued to use the heavier weapon. Though heavier, harder to clean, and a great deal more difficult to conceal even when stripped, Inuma swore by the old model- the recoil, he believed, was far more manageable than that of the G3 model. Ergo, his rate of fire was marginally higher. Comfort be damned.

Shrouded in a dark cloak and lying prone on the ground, the lone, grizzled soldier silently peered through his scope and observed the battlegrounds below like a bird of prey seeking out its next meal. The weather was cool, and a gentle breeze lilted softly like some lachrymose lullaby.

Were it not for the ongoing battle, he thought to himself, this scenery would be pretty nice.

"Inuma to Major Cohen." Inuma held his comms device right up to his mouth, his voice a hoarse and barely audible whisper. "I'm in position. Zulu sixteen one six one six zero zero four seven seven zero nine two. Great place for sniping lizards. Awaiting your orders. Over."

Joining the Orphan Company was not a path of career progression that Yozo Inuma had thought he'd end up choosing. As it was, he hadn't actually chosen it, given the circumstances, but there wasn't much to complain. Life as a private security contractor and hitman had its moments of fun, not to mention an extravagant purse, but it got boring quickly. He hadn't escaped from the prison of old money only to go back in by his own will.

"..."

The spot that the 41-year-old mercenary had picked out for himself was upon a knoll that overlooked the main area of operations that HQ had mapped out for the Orphan Company. Known only as Z16-161600-477092, one had to make their way through an unpleasant amount of undergrowth and squeeze through unforgivingly narrow passes just to get up there. It would be hard for a Ragon, large as they were, to sneak up on him from behind, and that was assuming they could find him to begin with- the vegetation at the knoll he had chosen was heavy, perfect for concealing a lone man with a long-range weapon. Hard to reach, with the 30kg of gear he had on him, but nigh impenetrable for any lizards looking to shank him. Comfort be damned.

A tingling sensation built up in his chest, as his oesophagus clenched. His eyes still trained on the landscape below, Inuma reached into his pocket with his free hand and pulled out a little sticker, rolling up his sleeve and pasting it onto his skin.

A cigarette would have been best, but for now, the patches would have to do.

Come on, you reptilian bastards. I'm getting impatient.
Last edited by Nagakawa on Thu Jun 03, 2021 8:36 am, edited 1 time in total.
.____________永 河 帝 國____________.
.____________自 他 共 栄____________.

Population: 89 million (2020)
Landmass: 328,036 km²
Capital: Inada
Most populous city: Rushima
Government: Unitary parliamentary constitutional monarchy
Monarch: Tomohito
Prime Minister: Hideyoshi Kaburagi (Republican)
Chief Justice: Hideki Motobu
GDP (PPP): $4.917 trillion
HDI: 0.902 (very high)
Currency: Nagakawan yen (¥)
Internet TLD: .nk
Country code: NGK
Driving side: left
Call code: +133
National flower: Paulownia fortunei
National bird: Red-crowned crane
National sport: Judo

—___盾 鎧 斬 機 ● 疾 破 轟 喰___—
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Dyelli Beybi
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Postby Dyelli Beybi » Sat Jun 05, 2021 12:38 pm

Rebecca Cohen

Cohen didn't stay in the central bunker for long, after less than a minute she reappeared, weaving her way through the support trenches to a position in the front line, where she hopped up onto the firing step, training her binoculars on the aerial battle in the distance. The Ragon flyers were outnumbered by the Federation, but they were a more advanced design, larger, slightly less manoeuvrable but in possession of shields, which made a big difference. Nevertheless, over the years of war the technology gap had decreased and the Ragons didn't seem able to replace their losses in the same way that the Federation could.

"Hmm," Cohen muttered, "Looks like our folks are doing pretty well up there."

It was hard to say exactly. The action was close enough to make out the individual craft and tell the boxier Ragon vessels from their sleeker Federation counterparts as they closed to dogfight. There was the flash of weapons fire. A blue pulse of light from one of the Ragon flyers as it took a hit, turning desperately to engage the Federation fighters. It had one on it's tail, though before the Federation pilot could deliver the killing shot, another flyer swooped in. There was a flash and a burst of flame from the Federation fighter which came tumbling down from the sky even as the Ragons broke off the engagement, apparently having had enough.

A few moments later there was the bloom of a parachute, a mile or so beyond their position, "Hmm," Cohen grunted, "Looks like we aren't getting bombed today. Any volunteers to pick up our pilot if we get a radio call for help? That position will be crawling with Ragons before too long. I'm not going to leave anyone to be dinner for the lizards. The rest of you... get dug in then have some food and water. Yes, I know it's a bit early for lunch, but I can't guarantee the lizards will give us a meal break."
Last edited by Dyelli Beybi on Sat Jun 05, 2021 12:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Bingellia
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Postby Bingellia » Sun Jun 06, 2021 9:44 am

Vymlor Risaru



Vymlor had remained in the forward trench during the approach of the fliers, he felt relatively safe enough there and someone on the hill needed to keep an eye on one of the approaches for a potential follow up by Ragon ground forces. He also found that watching the formations weave between each other in the dogfight had been a nice change from the monotony of the march to Hill 7382, and felt a slight shudder as he watched the federation fighter screech to the ground. He had seen more than a few pilots fall being the lines, and understood the fate those men suffered in this war.

Cohen's order was not out of the ordinary from what he had heard of the woman, and it was certainly an honorable one. It piqued Vylmor's curiosity as well, it would certainly be interesting serving under this human.

"I will go if we receive the call from our downed pilot, Major Cohen," Vylmor loudly replied from his position. "I can move quickly and I could carry them if they are injured." That wasn't entirely bluster either, the 6'8" Inuv was strongly built, and would likely have little issue lifting the pilot, whether Human, Gorialax, or Berkidon. Besides the honor in rescuing in the pilot, it was a naturally risky task that was bound to have at least some thrill to it even if fighting a Ragon alone with a pilot in tow was likely lizard-assisted suicide.
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Tesserach
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Postby Tesserach » Sun Jun 06, 2021 7:59 pm

Cpl. Tuesaaya Sanmanee
Weapons Squad, Fireteam Bravo
Pfc.'s O'Hare & Recowski supporting


Military cultures varied greatly, and Tuesaaya's own original training was little more than a distant memory, ill-suited the conflicts she'd seen since. One of the few exceptions from those early days that never faded was the view that weapons were mere tools. She had never felt an attachment to her weapons, never given them names. Apart from her utility knives, which seemed to last awhile, it was rare she even kept them around that long. Rather, she always sought to bring the right tool for the job.

Hill 7382 was a strong elevated position. Good sight lines. Well prepared and dug-in. It was comparatively strong. Given their task to hold such a static position against an aggressive and determined foe determined to press the attack, her weapon of choice was the Federation's LMII heavy blaster machinegun.

The Federation's infantry had been forced to abandon their light and medium machinegun teams, given their ineffectiveness in the face of the enormous and heavily armoured Ragon foe they faced. They had a machinegun - the LMII-HMG - which was highly effective against Ragon, but was too unwieldy for dismounted infantry in the field. While they were a mainstay on Federation vehicles, the bulky tripod mounted, cyro-cooled units that could be used in the field rarely ventured far from major Federation bases, and even then, were usually moved as close as possible to their final position by vehicle. Tuesaaya, of course, wasn't typical Federation infantry...

Being something of a giant and a war relic, the weapon squad's newest corporal could hardly escape being the subject of discussion looking as she did. People had come to see the old war machine in action. Great things had been expected. And in another time, in another life perhaps, she might have exceeded even those. But it wasn't another time. And it wasn't another life. The Tuesaaya who could've done such things had died a long time ago.

Initial excitement at her appearance had quickly given way to disappointment. For men and women who went to pains to get and maintain themselves in peak physical form, watching Corporal Sanmanee lumber her way around the parade grounds during PT had been painful. She still had some strength left in her, that much they could give her, and it was clear she had once been an impressive instrument of war...

But that was it: once; not now. Now she was washed up. Too slow, too old, too broken down.

Such had been the talk. Such was always the talk when she made an appearance these days. It had become a familiar pattern.

Her performance in other drills had gone some measure to redeeming her in the eyes of some at least. Her accuracy on range was excellent. In CQC her form had been technically flawless. Among the elite company present, some did achieve higher levels of proficiency, but not many, and even those could appreciate just how smoothly the movements of an old master flowed from one action and stance to the next, especially with a clearly old and broken down body.

Maybe, some grudgingly admitted, Corporal Sanmanee wasn't completely washed up after all. Perhaps there was a place for her; maybe in some regular forces outfit; some other outfit; not an elite infantry team.

Not the Orphans.

Tuesaaya had caught some of it, but even if she hadn't, she knew it would be there. She remembered her own first time working with outsiders. Watching how slow and weak everyone was and seeing the ones, even among the slow and the weak, who clearly didn't belong. She'd never seen it before, but she quickly absorbed the lexicon of her surroundings: fuck ups, fall downs, non-hackers, burn out, washed-ups.

Now things had come full circle.

As with most things, Tuesaaya suffered the indignity in silence. Just one more thing she would have to endure. Every morning she woke up, reciting, silently in her own mind. "I'm alive." and "I'm still in the fight". She'd heard those same words a thousand times, in a thousand different hushed and frightened voices but unlike them, she actually was still here, still slogging her way up some hill while they - along with all the stand-ups and fall-downs that had introduced her to the culture in the first place - were long since dead and buried. She was still in the fight whether wagging tongues accepted it or not.

Climbing Hill 7382, a few of those tongues would be put to rest. She could see it in their eyes, blinking through sweat just a few paces ahead of her as they glanced up over their shoulders to see that yes, the slowest corporal in the company was still keeping pace with them, and that no, she wasn't slowing down and that she doing it with a goddamned XMII and god only knew what else strapped to her back. Tuesaaya didn't smile. She didn't say a word. But if they slowed, or their steps faltered even for a moment, she immediately pushed past them.

She'd caught a few like that along 7372. Not many. Not as many as last time. But some.

The trenches had only been about 100 meters off when Major Cohen's order to take cover was shouted at them down the hilltop and the tail end of the column was obliged to make a break for the final stretch. By longstanding tradition, the company's weapons squad usually carried the largest, heaviest packs, and all of them together made a comical sight scrambling that last 100m.

Her squadmates disappeared beneath their packs, such that they were reduced to pairs of legs furiously pumping beneath kits. Tuesaaya, whose kit was larger still, resembled a giant, ungainly bipedal turtle moving at a lunging waddle while her pack swayed wildly one way then the other such that it seemed impossible she and the whole top-heavy affair hadn't ended up going ass-over-teakettle back down the hillside.

"Thanks for that." Someone who'd seen the whole thing declared dryly after the last of them had slid, breathless, into the first line of trenches. Casually flicking a cigarette to the ground and grinding it under their boot they added. "Funniest shit I ever saw."



As they walked beneath the flag pole, old giant paused and craned her neck skyward. Her inhuman eyes and wreckage of a face were inscrutable as she read the motto scrawled on flag as it flapped in amidst the breeze, brazenly declaring the Orphans' intent(and position) here. It was the same expression she'd worn when the "No retreat. No surrender" order had first been relayed to her. If she had any particular thoughts on the matter however, she kept them to herself.

At the summit the two privates in her charge - Recowski and O'Hare - raced into the bunker that was their destination, eager to throw off their kits. Tuesaaya, trudging after them, was forced to unclip and drape hers precariously over a shoulder - the servos in her left leg loudly protesting the sudden shift in weight - before she could duck through the bunker entrance. This would be their base of operations in the coming battle.

Mounting the XMII on its tripod assembly was their first priority, and required some work. They were just finishing that up when Major Cohen's request for volunteers was overheard outside. Tuesaaya watched both Recowski and O'Hare sit up and look at one another, their ears perking up like dogs who'd just heard their names called.

"Tighten this up and get it sighted in." She instructed, handing O'Hare the wrench she'd had in her hand. Lurching to her feet, she started wiping her oily, mechanical hands - old filed down scars from shrapnel impacts etched into the metal - while she peered outside. "I'll go see what the major wants. O'Hare, you're in charge."

With that she stepped towards the exit, grabbing a rifle - grenade launcher attachment underneath - while slinging a smaller pack harness, the one with her field essentials, over her shoulder.

"Sure thing boss." O'Hare replied as Tuesaaya ducked out of the bunker, her rifle in one hand, her half-fastened helmet chinstrap on the other.

Left alone, O'Hare looked over to Recowksi with a knowing nod and a shit-eating-grin.

"What the hell's that look?" Recowski asked.

O'Hare responded in his characteristic surfer drawl. "Oh yeah... you can tell."

"Tell what?" Recowski asked.

"She wants me bro."

"Dude, you're fucked." Recowski laughed as started staring down the sights of the machinegun.



Lumbering down towards the foremost trench, Tuesaaya approached Major Cohen and Corporal Risaru as they discussed the downed fighter. Drawing up next to Risaru, Tuesaaya waited for the major's acknowledgement before she spoke. "Major Cohen. My team is cleared for action... I am free." Looking at Risaru, then to see if anyone else were coming she added. "I am certain the two of us could move the pilot. But, if it is a casualty situation... we should be prepared for the possibility we may need to stabilize in place."

"I'd be most comfortable with a team just to render aid to the pilot, plus dedicated front and rear security. Two at a minimum. I would prefer enough bodies to hold a perimeter if we do catch contact."
Last edited by Tesserach on Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:58 am, edited 16 times in total.
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Nachfolgia
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Postby Nachfolgia » Mon Jun 07, 2021 3:40 pm

Joel Rimbaut

"Clementine, huh." Ivan said to Joel as he too engrossed himself with the sights of his gun. "Um..."

Ivan sniffed. "I'm Ivan, from Triton." He said whilst not sounding too confidence with introductions. "And you are...?"


Joel pulled his eye away from his rifle scope when a man who had posted up next to him spoke. He looked him up and down for a brief moment. The man looked to be about his age and just as worse for wear. Like Joel, this man's eyes told a tale of loss and despair. Such is the price of war. Joel smirked before straightening himself up.

" Joel Rimbaut. Louisiana. Not as glamorous as a moon, but home nonetheless. Pleased to meet ye?" Joel said as he held his hand for a shake.

" So you're from Triton, huh? You didn't happen to be there when NATO invaded, did ye?" Joel asked. Unfortunately before the man could respond, the sounds of the dogfight nearby caught Joel's attention. He watched as several aircraft went down in a fiery inferno, most of which were Ragons.

" Welp...looks like our flyboys are given 'em hell. Ya know, I never been one for the air. All them transport flights never sat well with me. If ye fall out of the sky, yer done for. Too sketchy for my tastes. What about you, Ruskie? You like flyin'?" Joel said, trying to engage in small talk.

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Europa Undivided
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Postby Europa Undivided » Thu Jun 10, 2021 1:26 am

Ivan Ivanovich Ivanovsky
Greska
Hill 7382


" Welp...looks like our flyboys are given 'em hell. Ya know, I never been one for the air. All them transport flights never sat well with me. If ye fall out of the sky, yer done for. Too sketchy for my tastes. What about you, Ruskie? You like flyin'?" Joel said, trying to engage in small talk.


"I flew a few times, yes." Ivan replied, peering out of the bunker to gaze upon the atmospheric fighters clashing in a terrible dogfight. As the sounds of battle filtered into his ears, he continued to speak to the man from Louisiana. "I was one of the Spetsnaz of the Federation, and being able to pilot vessels either through sky or space was part of our training. But..."

Memories of his first deployments against NATO flashed before his eyes. "I didn't get to drive around a lot when the Ragons came around and ruined everything in our little solar system. And I ended up hiding in the subways of New York City. And I'd eventually meet Major Cohen during one of our scavenging missions... and the rest is history."

A few moments later there was the bloom of a parachute, a mile or so beyond their position, "Hmm," Cohen grunted, "Looks like we aren't getting bombed today. Any volunteers to pick up our pilot if we get a radio call for help? That position will be crawling with Ragons before too long. I'm not going to leave anyone to be dinner for the lizards. The rest of you... get dug in then have some food and water. Yes, I know it's a bit early for lunch, but I can't guarantee the lizards will give us a meal break."


Walking into the bunker, Ivan saluted the two of them. "I volunteer as well." Ivan said right after Tuesaaya made her participation known. "As... she said, there has to be a few volunteers in order to ensure successful extraction."
Last edited by Europa Undivided on Mon Jun 14, 2021 3:46 am, edited 1 time in total.
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"FRESH AIR UPON MY SKIN IS LIKE THE FLENSING DAGGERS OF A THOUSAND THOUSAND MENIAL URCHINS GOING AT A SACK OF POTATOES. MY EXISTENCE IS FRAUGHT WITH FALLS AND POINTLESS ANGST IN THE MIDST OF THIS DISGUSTING REALITY. THE LIGHT BURNS! FOR I HAVE NEVER BEEN WORTHY TO WA-[bird noise]".

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Dyelli Beybi
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Postby Dyelli Beybi » Sun Jun 13, 2021 2:45 pm

Rebecca Cohen

"Major!" someone called from the direction of the central bunker, before anyone else had an opportunity to volunteer to go into no-man's-land, "There's a distress call from the downed fighter. Pilot is injured." The speaker was a private soldier, one of the ones who had been with Cohen when she had arrived to set up her field HQ. Probably the radio operator.

"Radio back to hold tight!" Cohen called back, "We'll send assistance."

Cohen nodded, "Right... Risaru, you stuck your hand up first. Put together a team and head down the hill and retrieve our pilot," she said, before breaking her plan down into more detail, "Take no more than six people; a fireteam of four then a further two to bear stretchers. Volunteers first, then private soldiers from under the command of any of the other NCOs who have volunteered to head down."

"On top of that, take a couple of stretcher bearers and make sure there is someone with some medical experience beyond spraying foam into an open wound," she added, with a nod to Tuesaaya to acknowledge the fact that she had heard what she had said, even if she wasn't about to give all the resources to the mission that Tuesaaya probably wanted, "Though there will be casualties on the hill later so don't strip our medical personnel. There may be Ragon scouts in the area. Do not engage them unless you have no choice in the matter. If you are engaged. This is a rescue operation, but I don't want to lose anyone from the 6th so take no unnecessary risks. If that means moving someone who probably shouldn't be moved, move them anyway... but try to do it gently."

"Inuma will call directions," she added finally, "And I'll be watching from right here. We'll let you know if we spot any Ragons moving in your area. If you have any questions, ask away, if not, I trust you all to use your initiative to overcome whatever obstacles you find in your path. Head to the smoke, get the pilot, get back here."

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Lessoni
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Postby Lessoni » Sun Jun 13, 2021 5:12 pm

Dwight "Bird" Leonard

Like fucking rats in the mud, they were. No, he wasn't complaining; it was natural, being back in the mud, but still, all these fancy lasers, anti grav gear, god damn rocket ships, and they were still rats in the fucking mud, separated from the real rats by ideology. Rats fought to keep themselves alive, most of his fellow soldiers fought to keep each other alive, and he fought to die. Dwight thought the rats had it the easiest. They didn't need to hope their rifle wouldn't overheat at just the wrong moment, hope the batteries would keep barking, that the ships would stay in the air, that all of them could stay on their feet just a little longer, all a rat needed to hope for was a nice corpse to munch on.

He checked his rifle, the notches in the sides reminding him of enough that he didn't stick the barrel in his mouth. He'd been catching what counted as fresh air on that hellhole of a planet, smoking a cigarette he wasn't sure he was allowed to smoke, and now he was prepping for Armageddon for the fourth time in a week. He contemplated not volunteering to go haul a flyboy out of trouble. Figured there'd be more than enough idiots vying to throw themselves headfirst into trouble, but... Dwight thought of himself as pragmatic, but that wasn't entirely true. He had a soft side, more a soft underbelly, and that little bastion of softness whispered to him, eroding the cynical shell he worked so hard to keep up, asked him if he'd want to be left alone to die in a lizard's gut; his answer to himself was yes, but he had a feeling the pilot's wouldn't be.

He stepped up silently. He'd follow, when the group set off, and maybe he'd put out the cigarette. Maybe not. He rifled through his pack, making sure his equipment was there. A bomber's wet dream of a kit, a pack of cigarettes, and an old fashioned bullet revolver. Yup, everything he needed.
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Tesserach
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Postby Tesserach » Mon Jun 14, 2021 4:39 pm

Cpl. Tuesaaya Sanmanee


"Major!" someone called from the direction of the central bunker, before anyone else had an opportunity to volunteer to go into no-man's-land, "There's a distress call from the downed fighter. Pilot is injured." The speaker was a private soldier, one of the ones who had been with Cohen when she had arrived to set up her field HQ. Probably the radio operator.


As the private's call was heard over the trenches, Tuesaaya drifted away from the small impromptu gathering; head down, her eyes cast toward the horizon and toward the thick billowing clouds of black smoke then rising like a pillar into the sky. Map in one hand, still in the plastic resealable bag it had been in when the old giant fished it from her front pocket. In the other, a compass. She observed both intently before she cast her eyes afield.

Tuesaaya's face, inhuman, weathered and war beaten, seemed devoid of expression most times. But as her broken eyes glanced from the map to the hills, valley and sky that lay before her, it was plain to see what thoughts occupied her mind. Her eyes glided down the hillside of
Hill 7382, ran along the ridges and through the trees, trailing off into the distance.

Fixing on that pillar of black smoke.

"On top of that, take a couple of stretcher bearers and make sure there is someone with some medical experience beyond spraying foam into an open wound," she added, with a nod to Tuesaaya to acknowledge the fact that she had heard what she had said, even if she wasn't about to give all the rseources to the mission that Tuesaaya probably wanted


Folding the map back into one of the front sleeves of the tattered, oversized combat webbing she wore, Tuesaaya turned slowly back to face the Major, returning the cursory nod. Turning back to face the smoke, the old soldier hoisted herself out of the trenches accompanied by a laboured breath and the whining groan of servos in her right arm.

"Inuma will call directions," she added finally, "And I'll be watching from right here. We'll let you know if we spot any Ragons moving in your area. If you have any questions, ask away, if not, I trust you all to use your initiative to overcome whatever obstacles you find in your path. Head to the smoke, get the pilot, get back here."


Towering above the group gathering to discuss the mission even in a low crouch, her dark ominous form silhouetted against the sky, Tuesaaya flipped down the helmet-mounted optics over her eyes. Running the binocular vision along the same paths she'd traced before, following the slopes of Hill 7382 down until they vanished into the trees and gullies of the valley floor below as though she were looking for something in particular.

There was a tension, an uneasiness about the way she sat hunched over the edge of the trench-line as she searched. As though she sensed the hills themselves had eyes and were watching her back.

"Major. May we engage with indirect fire? We can call fire missions from concealment."

For all her grizzly appearance, and the tired indifference with which she spoke, many people were caught out to find Cpl. Sanmanee was possessed of a surprisingly soft-spoken voice. Still, there was steel in her tone that made her opinion crystal clear; she felt these hills would be much improved by fewer Ragon eyes reporting the company's - and the battalion's - positions and movements ahead of the battle to come.

Tuesaaya's Theme
Last edited by Tesserach on Mon Jun 14, 2021 6:30 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Western Fardelshufflestein
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Postby Western Fardelshufflestein » Thu Jun 17, 2021 10:29 am

Corporal Eda

Eda would have gotten to the central bunker sooner were it not for the Inuv.

Swaggering behind his squad leader with his chest puffed out, a self-gratifying smirk on his face like he owned the Company. A ruling type, no doubt. Likely came from a life of privilege before the Ragons had finally reached what was left of his homeworld.

She'd slammed into him because he'd purposely blocked her, not because she was unaware of her surroundings. She'd known she was going to intercept and surpass this troupe of four, as they were walking more slowly than she; she had decided to report alone, allowing the rest of her squad to gather their provisions and assess their position. They were a little ways down the middle trench toward the far side, crouching in a semi-covered bunker practically on top of other squads. They were used to such close conditions by now, had been their entire lives, although the cramped life of a soldier was much different than that of a slave. Yet, in a way, those two lives were hardly different at all.

The Inuv had snapped at her, and a tallish human male with light brown hair visible under his half-lifted visor reproved him with a tired tone. He'd apologized to Eda on his soldier's behalf, like it was his fault this man always behaved brashly. If he was indeed the squad leader, as Eda had surmised, he was not a very good one if he could not keep his subordinates under control.

She'd started up again, this time in a light jog, toward the central bunker of the complex. No, it was more of a fort, she'd decided. Less crude than it could have been, more advanced than what she'd expected. But fancy buildings and shiny machines had no place here, where they were only going to be bombarded by Ragon fire again and again. This place was designed for functionality, was designed to hold. It was not a technological marvel. Eda had seen plenty of those over the past six years, and, each time, she'd found herself not caring.

It was not until she'd reached the central bunker that Eda had suddenly remembered who the young corporal was. She vaguely knew him, and had not often seen him in full combat gear, which must have been why she'd had difficulty recognizing him. His name was Mathis; was was co-corporal with his younger sister, Dylan, her name was. His age according to his planet was 19--he was not much younger than Eda, actually, but he had been a child when the Ragons had taken Earth and its colonies.

Major Cohen was in the midst of delivering orders when Eda entered the bunker. "Risaru, you stuck your hand up first. Put together a team and head down the hill and retrieve our pilot. Take no more than six people; a fireteam of four then a further two to bear stretchers. Volunteers first, then private soldiers from under the command of any of the other NCOs who have volunteered to head down."

There had been an order some minutes before about pulling together a rescue for a pilot whose flyer had been shot. Eda had witnessed the sequence, had seen the reassuring billowing cloth following a bipedal figure drifting to the ground. Though she was not altruistic by any stretch, Eda knew she and her squad could cut down any lone Ragons that tried to venture toward their encampment. They specialized in such takedowns, the four of them, and had grown quite adept at it over the years. They'd kept track of their body count, which was now 21, and were hoping to make it to an impressive 25 within the span of this one battle.

"On top of that, take a couple of stretcher bearers and make sure there is someone with some medical experience beyond spraying foam into an open wound." Cohen shot a look toward Corporal Tuesaaya, a lanky, war-torn woman whose huge body was not now more than a mishmash of assorted protheses. She was quite the terror in battle, however, and could handle most any weapon with precision. "Though there will be casualties on the hill later so don't strip our medical personnel. There may be Ragon scouts in the area. Do not engage them unless you have no choice in the matter. If you are engaged. This is a rescue operation, but I don't want to lose anyone from the 6th so take no unnecessary risks. If that means moving someone who probably shouldn't be moved, move them anyway... but try to do it gently.

"Inuma will call directions, and I'll be watching from right here. We'll let you know if we spot any Ragons moving in your area. If you have any questions, ask away, if not, I trust you all to use your initiative to overcome whatever obstacles you find in your path. Head to the smoke, get the pilot, get back here."

Eda's ears perked up at the mention of Ragon scouts. That possibility was precisely why she had decided to volunteer in the first place; she and her band of rebels could take down a Ragon scout.

Unfortunately, the sheer size of the Ragons and the small numbers of her squad meant they could only engage with one at a time. They would need backup in case more encroached, which they would, especially once they realized one of their slimy comrades had fallen. Having volunteered for this particular mission many times before, and having been granted permission by Major Cohen, Eda knew she would be given the opportunity to do so as soon as she raised her hand.

Mathis Alfsen

Some minutes earlier...

The order from Cohen came through on the private radio system all corporals had access to; as it came through, Mathis and Dylan made eye contact with each other, but the rest of their squad just stood there, bemused. When the order was finished, Mathis relayed it to the squad, then crouched lower to the ground so he could rest his legs while he strategized.

"Alright...I don't think all of us need to go, since we're a pretty large squad and I don't imagine we'll be given a major role. And if Ragons start swarming--"

"They'll reach us eventually," Dylan cut in. She was rolling her eyes audibly from behind her visor, Mathis sensed. "So there's no point in doing that. Unless you want half the squad to approach from one side and the other side from another in case we need to cut off a Ragon?"

"Yeah, that seems like a good idea. Should have thought of that on my own."

"You were too busy trying to 'protect' me from the Ragons, weren't you? You want to do the noble thing and sacrifice yourself so that I might live."

"Partially. That, and I need to fulfill my promise to Ioncio."

Beside him, Ioncio squirmed, clearly peeved at being called out in this way. Good. He was a nasty being, and he needed to be reminded that this squad was his team, not his echo chamber for verbal abuse.

"So I assume he's going on your side, right?"

"Of course. And I was also thinking of taking Naphri, who at least is somewhat familiar with the gravity of this planet more than we if not the landscape."

The Berdikon woman flicked the venomous spur that protruded from her wrist, evidently pleased she could finally put her combat skills to use. Of the eight of them, Naphri was the most recent addition to the Company, and was hardly older than Mathis. She had seen very little combat, but she did know how to operate a blaster and got along well with the other two female members of the squad.

"If you're taking Naphri, I'll take Carlisle," asserted Dylan. "He's easily the biggest and strongest one of all of us."

"Maybe so, but I'm also the only one here who knows the first thing about Shakespeare." Carlisle's distinct accent, which was a peculiar hybrid of English and something else entirely, cut through his voice and mangled his words. At first, Mathis had found it nearly impossible to understand him, as the translator nanites apparently recognized that both he and Carlisle were speaking the same language. He'd finally begun to make sense of Carlisle after about a week, and now he captured most of what the burly man said, if not all of it.

"Okay...not relevant at all, but okay." Dylan sounded nonplussed. "This is a bit like picking teams was in school, isn't it? Anyway, I think Ajax should also be on my team, since he and Carlisle work well together."

"I concur with that. Er, on the Ajax part and about the sports teams. I had two more years of formal schooling than you, and I definitely agree." Mathis frowned, deliberating whether he should choose Adam or Ester next. Adam did not comparitively have much skill when it came to combat, hence why he one of the final the final two standing, but his basic medical training was invaluable in battle. Ester, on the other hand, was the best fighter he and Dylan had. It would make more sense for her to be on Mathis's squad, although she fought really well alongside Dylan, considering Ioncio's incorrigibility meant he'd be reluctant to put forth his best effort. He also had to consider who got along well with whom, as well as who would provide the experience he needed to counter Naphri's lack thereof, which made the choice more obvious.

"Ester," he murmured, turning over the syllables of her name with his tongue. "Ester, you will accompany me, Naphri, and Ioncio to central command. Adam, you will stick behind with Dylan and gather provisions while you await further instruction." He paused as he remembered the final, dismissive part of Cohen's order. "The four of you should eat a bit while you're waiting, as well. As Major Cohen said, we aren't going to exactly be given a lunch break by the Ragons."
Now...

Mathis silently slipped into the central bunker alone, with the three other members of his team waiting just outside. Knowing them, or knowing Ioncio, they were eavesdropping; this wasn't a secret meeting, however, and it was not as though any of them would be stupid enough to betray Company plans to the Ragons. Every single one of them was potential Ragon prey.

"--head to the smoke, get to the pilot, get back here," Cohen stated just as Mathis entered the room. She said nothing more after that, leading Mathis to realize he'd missed the entire order. He would have gotten here sooner had Ioncio not caused that delay--.

The corporal Ioncio had cut off was here, too, standing at attention in her full battle gear. Her name was Eda; she had no last name, having hailed from a planet where most of the population were slaves. Part of Mathis had hoped no other races had partaken in slavery when he'd first learned of the Company, but, of course, humans weren't the only ones. The planet Eda was from, a metallurgical colony known as Gor, had supplied resources to another empire very close nearby. Mathis did not know much of her story, just that she and the other three members of her squad had escaped Gor together--they were a very closed off bunch, and, frankly, their intimidating demeanors were mildly frightening.

Whatever Major Cohen had ordered, part of it had been addressed to Tuessaaya, a cyborg corporal Mathis knew of through her feats of physical strength; for it was Tuesaaya who spoke up next, posing a question that was probably on all of their minds.

"Major. May we engage with indirect fire? We can call fire missions from concealment."

Corporal Eda

From her peripheral vision, Eda detected the entrance of Corporal Mathis, the human whose squad had impeded her journey. Strangely, his sister was nowhere to be seen. Eda supposed that made sense, since, if one of them got hit in the strike, at least the other would still be alive to preserve their family's memory.

She half heard Tuesaaya's query about indirect fire. The woman had a salient point; perhaps her squad and Eda's could work together and hunt down Ragon scouts.

"I was going to volunteer my squad to go after Ragon scouts like we always do," interjected Eda. "You could cover us and open fire on additional scouts in case we draw the attention of more than one." Her proposal was a solid one, but it was also fairly open-ended. If Tuesaaya had other ideas, she could always decline. Eda and her squad knew how to retreat regardless, so if they found themselves becoming surrounded, they could head toward the base and regroup with other soldiers.

It was not Tuesaaya, but Mathis, who spoke up next. "My squad could almost certainly cover yours," he told Eda, looking her directly in the eye. His visor was still up, so she could see his face; it seemed unwise, but then again, Corporal Dylan was known for being fairly reckless. Some of that blatant disregard for personal safety was bound to have an effect on him.

"We've divided into two groups, so we could approach a Ragon from either side and attack it from multiple directions. We can surround the thing and fire at it at close and mid range, preferably the latter, so that we can change our position and go after Ragon adversaries sequentially. Fighting multiple Ragons at once is not the best stratagem for a squad of your size, and, while my squad may be able to take on two at a time, it would be more prudent to go after one at a time to conserve energy and resources."

"Your squad is twice the size of mine, and you only want to take on one Ragon at a time? Pathetic." Eda shook her head in thinly veiled disgust. "You have two groups. Each group takes on a separate Ragon so that we hit three at a time. Of course, if there is only one additional scout in the vicinity, you take on one. But you're the distraction, not the main aggressor. I'll direct you toward the Ragons I need you to hit first. Understood?"

"Excellent. My half of the squad will be to one side of yours, and Dylan's to the other. Make sure to give my squad the bigger ones; I am punishing a member of my squad, and I must keep my word in having him be the vanguard. Name's Ioncio--he's the Inuv who held you up earlier."

The disgust coming from Mathis at the mention of his squad member's name was both satisfying and disturbing to Eda, or should have been. What Mathis was doing would probably strike the others as cruel.

"Fine by me, human," Eda responded, turning her back to him as she waited for Major Cohen to give her approval.
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Tesserach
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Tesserach » Thu Jun 17, 2021 2:55 pm

"I was going to volunteer my squad to go after Ragon scouts like we always do," interjected Eda. "You could cover us and open fire on additional scouts in case we draw the attention of more than one." Her proposal was a solid one, but it was also fairly open-ended. If Tuesaaya had other ideas, she could always decline. Eda and her squad knew how to retreat regardless, so if they found themselves becoming surrounded, they could head toward the base and regroup with other soldiers.


Flipping her helmet optics back up, Tuesaaya turned to regard Eda, alone, among the people then clustering around the Major as the Gorian spoke. Tuesaaya gave a short nod, then turned to study the major's reaction as other speakers joined in.

Eventually though, she seemed to lose interest, and returned to her study of the valley terrain.
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Europa Undivided » Sat Jun 19, 2021 1:05 am

Ivan Ivanovich Ivanovksy
Greska
Hill 7382


"Hmmm." Ivan simply watched by as Eda and Tuesaaya, both of whom were Inuvs, laid out their plans for the incursion into no-mans-land to retrieve the pilot. From the looks of it, they already had that part well covered, and it's not like he planned out assaults back in the time. He was given plans and carried them out. If things go south, adapt to the circumstances. That was all.

He let his gaze flow back towards the blasted battlefield. Pillars of smoke rose in the distance, the muffled sounds of battles in other sectors filtering into his ears.

The ground itself was bereft of life now. Artillery bombardment had ground up the earth, pulling out the grass that without a doubt once covered it in a carpet. There were still patches here and there, but overall, there were a lot of craters. These reminded him of those vicious battles that humans fought amongst themselves, were thousands died in a single day whilst failing to advance the lines by an inch. Though war had greatly evolved since then, the single constant from then until now would be the horrors, the shellshock. And with giant lizards in the mix, that gets even worse.

He looked back at Rebecca. The time they spent back on Earth seemed so distant now. They moved across the land, dodging the lizards wherever they are. They were betrayed, and then rescued.

How long has it been, even? He can't remember anymore. Had three years passed? Four? Ivan just couldn't count the time that had come by since then. All he knew was that they had vengeance to claim, blood to spill, and heads to cut off.

"Cut off a thousand heads, and if that is not enough, cut off a thousand more..." Ivan thought, pertaining to the Ragons. Why wouldn't he? They're the reason he had lost his good friend as well as his significant other. And so much more.

As the plan started to come together, he just stood there, silent as an owl in the night. If things were looser, he might even be smoking. But no. Tobacco is impossible to get these days.
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"FRESH AIR UPON MY SKIN IS LIKE THE FLENSING DAGGERS OF A THOUSAND THOUSAND MENIAL URCHINS GOING AT A SACK OF POTATOES. MY EXISTENCE IS FRAUGHT WITH FALLS AND POINTLESS ANGST IN THE MIDST OF THIS DISGUSTING REALITY. THE LIGHT BURNS! FOR I HAVE NEVER BEEN WORTHY TO WA-[bird noise]".

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Dyelli Beybi
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Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Dyelli Beybi » Mon Jun 21, 2021 4:18 pm

Rebecca Cohen

Tesserach wrote:Cpl. Tuesaaya Sanmanee
...

Towering above the group gathering to discuss the mission even in a low crouch, her dark ominous form silhouetted against the sky, Tuesaaya flipped down the helmet-mounted optics over her eyes. Running the binocular vision along the same paths she'd traced before, following the slopes of Hill 7382 down until they vanished into the trees and gullies of the valley floor below as though she were looking for something in particular.

There was a tension, an uneasiness about the way she sat hunched over the edge of the trench-line as she searched. As though she sensed the hills themselves had eyes and were watching her back.

"Major. May we engage with indirect fire? We can call fire missions from concealment."

For all her grizzly appearance, and the tired indifference with which she spoke, many people were caught out to find Cpl. Sanmanee was possessed of a surprisingly soft-spoken voice. Still, there was steel in her tone that made her opinion crystal clear; she felt these hills would be much improved by fewer Ragon eyes reporting the company's - and the battalion's - positions and movements ahead of the battle to come.

Tuesaaya's Theme


Cohen shook her head at that request, "No: we need you back here, not setting up a forward observation post. You are only leaving this position on the hill to collect the pilot and bring them back to this position without delay. This is an unplanned mission of mercy because I think we have the time to pull it off before the Ragon Army arrives, but our orders are to hold this hill and we have barely enough troops to do that."

Ours is not to reason why...

"Everyone ready?" she asked, continuing without actually waiting for a response, "Good. Get moving! Every minute spent thinking about your options is a minute you are giving the enemy to get into position. If you move quickly, you might not encounter any opposition at all."

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Postby Europa Undivided » Thu Jun 24, 2021 4:40 am

Ivan Ivanovich Ivanovksy
Greska
No-Mans-Land


Memories of history lessons in high school flashed before Ivan's eyes as he and the other volunteers to seek out the fallen pilot. Images of the grueling trench warfare in the Western and Eastern Fronts of the so called war to end all wars, a conflict that brewed the hatred that will cause the next one to burst. It was like history was repeating itself, except that it would be a few centuries later, with the addition of space ships and vore lizards.

War never changes.

Ivan moved as fast as he could while not making too much noise. They needed to get there as soon as possible; as was said earlier, the longer it took for them to get their poor flyman or woman, the more the likelihood of encountering Ragons outside the protection of the trenches arose. He knew well that fighting those things in close range was suicide.

On his hands, he had the standard issue bolt action blaster that everyone in the Orphan Company had. He had something else, though. A memento of the past.

Slung on his back, the same stolen Ragon energy blade that he had picked up from the ruins of Novo Petrograd was dormant, attached to a new handle that he could fold up to the length of around one feet. He could then make it extend to up to eight feet, or the length of a spear. Not that he planned to go berserk and charge in with it. He reserved it for two things: remembrance, and executions.

Not that the Federation was a fan of the latter...

"Smoke, blood, and fire." Ivan rambled. "The smells of a field of battle. Almost exhilarating, if only our enemy weren't monsters that want to turn us into cattle. Hah. I hate them. What I would do to see their world burn..."

Bitterness indeed.
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"FRESH AIR UPON MY SKIN IS LIKE THE FLENSING DAGGERS OF A THOUSAND THOUSAND MENIAL URCHINS GOING AT A SACK OF POTATOES. MY EXISTENCE IS FRAUGHT WITH FALLS AND POINTLESS ANGST IN THE MIDST OF THIS DISGUSTING REALITY. THE LIGHT BURNS! FOR I HAVE NEVER BEEN WORTHY TO WA-[bird noise]".

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Western Fardelshufflestein
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Postby Western Fardelshufflestein » Thu Jun 24, 2021 12:27 pm

Dyelli Beybi wrote:Rebecca Cohen

Tesserach wrote:Cpl. Tuesaaya Sanmanee
...

Towering above the group gathering to discuss the mission even in a low crouch, her dark ominous form silhouetted against the sky, Tuesaaya flipped down the helmet-mounted optics over her eyes. Running the binocular vision along the same paths she'd traced before, following the slopes of Hill 7382 down until they vanished into the trees and gullies of the valley floor below as though she were looking for something in particular.

There was a tension, an uneasiness about the way she sat hunched over the edge of the trench-line as she searched. As though she sensed the hills themselves had eyes and were watching her back.

"Major. May we engage with indirect fire? We can call fire missions from concealment."

For all her grizzly appearance, and the tired indifference with which she spoke, many people were caught out to find Cpl. Sanmanee was possessed of a surprisingly soft-spoken voice. Still, there was steel in her tone that made her opinion crystal clear; she felt these hills would be much improved by fewer Ragon eyes reporting the company's - and the battalion's - positions and movements ahead of the battle to come.

Tuesaaya's Theme


Cohen shook her head at that request, "No: we need you back here, not setting up a forward observation post. You are only leaving this position on the hill to collect the pilot and bring them back to this position without delay. This is an unplanned mission of mercy because I think we have the time to pull it off before the Ragon Army arrives, but our orders are to hold this hill and we have barely enough troops to do that."

Ours is not to reason why...

"Everyone ready?" she asked, continuing without actually waiting for a response, "Good. Get moving! Every minute spent thinking about your options is a minute you are giving the enemy to get into position. If you move quickly, you might not encounter any opposition at all."


Corporal Eda

So that was it--Cohen was completely ignoring her and Tuesaaya's plan? Well, if Eda knew the first thing about rescue missions, and she did, she understood having a squad to cover the backs of the rescuers was a sound idea.

"Well, then." Mathis clasped his hands together as Cohen finished her announcement. "How about the two groups of my squad flank each side of the rescue, and yours will defend the rescuers from behind. You'll have more vantage the closer you are to the top of the hill than you would if you were in the front."

"My squad keeps the lookout. We'll tell you how many Ragons are approaching from the ground and from which direction." She offered no elaboration after that. She touted her blaster, gave the human a curt nod, headed out of the central tent to assume her position at the rear of the party.

She relayed the plan to her squad over their private comms link, her voice flat and fierce as it always was, while moving at a quick pace to close the distance between her position and that of the rest of the volunteer party. She wasted no time over frivolous thoughts or petty frets that often circulated in the minds of her comrades; she had a mission to carry out, a duty to protect the lives of the Sixth Division and the pilot they were rescuing. Take the rear, keep an eye out for Ragon scouts approaching from the ground, give the order for Mathis and Dylan's squad to mobilize and kill them.

Those slimy beasts had taken everything from most of these people. From Eda, they had taken a short, grueling life of misery and replaced slavery in the mines with the slavery of war. Her life was drastically different now, yet she found uncanny similarities between this and the mine. Following direct orders from higher-ups she would likely never get the privilege to meet, working long, hard hours toward something deemed essential despite it being ultimately futile. Everyone around her dying young, never going to see the chance of getting a luxurious life. Just pain, endless pain, mingling with anger and regret.

All of these emotions running high around her, yet Eda felt none of them.

She reconvened with her squad by taking her position at the rear. Matalion directly to her left, Ran to the left of him, and Taili to her right--all of them with their blasters in their hands as they braced themselves for the upcoming fight. Some of them could perish, or all of them could. This basic, straightforward-seeming mission would more than likely turn into a melee, because things were never as uncomplicated as they seemed.

They needed to be hidden to some extent so their presence could catch the Ragons by surprise. Admittedly, Eda was unsure how to best conceal herself and her squad while remaining close by. They had no tactical invisibility gear, just standard-issue armor and blasters. They weren't an especially highly revered squad, and they'd never needed anything else. They'd all spent their entire lives getting by on less than the minimum, so they did not need extra gear to get the job done.

Eda was never one to quake in the face of a great challenge. She was unafraid of conflict, of blood and death. She'd seen so much of it already that it no longer fazed her. Never had.

There are several scruffy bushes they can use as cover, something none of them are fond of. Having spent their whole lives on completely industrialized Gor, they have almost no concept of nature outside physical forces. Eda had never heard of plants until she'd encountered a natural planet for the first time. She'd never known anything about biomes or weather patterns beyond temperature, wind, light, darkness. Had never seen an animal. The only other life she'd grown up with came in the form of diseases, diseases the could easily be treated on the surface but would kill entire colonies inside the Orn.

She has no innate fondness for nature and accepted long ago that she never would. As she and her squad descended a ways down the hill and split up, she felt an inkling frustration at a scraggly branch that brushed against her helmet. She could not feel it, but its mere presence aggravated her. Of course, she would never dream of going around and systematically destroy systems of nature just because she didn't like it. She was not an uncivilized monster; she was not a Ragon.

"We're in position," she informed Mathis and probably Dylan through direct message. "Use bushes and rocks for cover. We cannot give away our location."

Mathis & Dylan Alfsen

"Already done," Mathis replied promptly. Hearing Eda's voice through his helmet intercom was unexpected, but simultaneously not all that surprising. They needed to maintain contact with one another so they could operate synchronously.

Mathis, for his part, was flanking the right side of the hill. He was lying flat on his stomach behind a rock, his legs outstretched behind him. Ioncio and Naphri were a little ways downhill, Ester a few meters behind him and slightly to the right. This stretch of the hill, or small mountain, was relatively gravelly, with larger rocks sticking up in little bulges to serve as minimal cover. He had intentionally selected this spot because stone served as a better defense than flora, although, if a Ragon was looming directly over him, it wouldn't matter either way.

There were a few more rocks in the general vicinity large enough to hide behind, but only one person would be able to effectively use them at a time. A lone defiant bush erupted from the stony ground about fifteen feet away; it was fairly useless except to serve as a feeble attempt of blending in with the rest of the landscape.

Even in full battle armor, the ground was uncomfortable. Loose stones and pebbles shifting under him and digging into his chest, elbows, legs, but the minor discomfort was nothing compared to the protection this zone offered. They needed as adequate a cover as they could obtain out here, needed the illusion of safety for as long as it could last.

"Do you see the gravelly stretch about a fifth of the way down?" Mathis speaking directly to both Eda and Dylan now. "We're taking cover over here behind the rocks. If you can, try to get behind a rock, because stone will serve as a better shield than will a bush." He added, "If not, have a backup plan. Make sure to scan the terrain and plot multiple escape options. When your position is compromised, you only have about a split second to make up your mind."

And audible groan came almost immediately, loudly enough that Dylan could have standing right next to him. Then again, her voice was being projected directly into Mathis's ear.

"We know all of this already, Mathis. We're not f*cking morons." Dylan was frankly a little tired of Mathis's condescension. He assumed things about others because he was quick to understand things, and figured he needed to remind people of information or strategic tactics just in case they had missed the obvious.

She was hiding behind a very full, relatively large bush with needle-like points--well, they resembled the nettles of pine trees she thought she remembered from Earth. The details were fuzzy now. She tried not to think about how much she was started to forget, had already forgotten, because she had to focus on the mission.

"Speaking of which, are we going to move down the hill as the party moves forward or stay here as long as possible?"

"We should probably move down the hill bit by bit, as long as we know it's safe enough. But we should stay somewhat spread out so we don't risk all of us getting hit at once." As usual, Mathis had the answer. Or thought he did. He'd been wrong before, and would be again, because he was only human.

At least he wasn't an Inuv.

"Our squad can try and creep down if we can, but we'll stay significantly behind you," came Eda's voice. With the translator nanites, it was impossible to tell what her accent was or what her native language sounded like unless you concentrated, because the nanites tricked your brain into thinking it always heard English. So much for multilingualism, right?

But Dylan could tell Eda spoke in almost a deadpan, save for the times when her voice was tinted with anger. She did not know why Eda was this way, but she'd heard the other three members of her squad talk in a similar nature. Maybe it was Gorian biology, or they were all incapable of feeling or mimicking emotions. Dylan wasn't so sure. But the toneless nature of Eda's voice scared her more than she cared to admit.

"We should contact Tuesaaya and see where her squad is positioned," suggested Mathis. The idea had only just crossed his mind, but now that it had, it occurred to him that they had left her out of the loop. That was highly unprofessional of them, and, honestly, quite rude.

"Major Cohen told her to hold the hill, I believe. She could be setting up closer to the base, perhaps right in front of it. In case the ground fighting gets too close."

Corporal Eda

"I will go ahead and message her," Eda responded. She had been strategizing with Tuesaaya earlier; it made perfect sense to glean what she could about Tusaaya and her squad's position. Eda hadn't had the time to deliberate with both Tuesaaya and Mathis after Major Cohen had given the order, and she'd chosen Mathis.

"Corporal Tuesaaya, this is Corporal Eda from the central bunker. What is your current position?"
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Audunia
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Democratic Socialists

Postby Audunia » Mon Jun 28, 2021 9:30 am

Cpl. Marc de Thuin

In the rush to claim positions, Marc had set his up in an orderly fashion, taking one of the more foremost trenches as he was often known to do. In the mixed nature of the Orphan Company, his squad was one of the few that remained entirely human, at Marc's own initiative. In his years following his evacuation from Earth, he'd never quite gotten used to the presence of aliens and found it even harder to fully trust them, seeing as it was aliens that had destroyed his home. He ranked the Federation above the Ragon, obviously, but still couldn't fully absolve the Federation of failing to protect Earth or rescue more humans, though his experiences of being homeless on the joyless planet had also hardened his spirit against them, their treatment of him leaving much too be desired.

"What in God's name are they playing at" Marc asked quietly, peering through the enhanced scope of the binoculars he kept on his person. He'd heard a request go out for volunteers to collect a crashed pilot, but had forbade any of his soldiers from doing so, he'd been fighting wars long enough to recognise the mission as the waste of resources it was. Still, the size of the rescue party greater than he had anticipated, he counted at least two squads conducting scouting manoeuvres. Great, he thought to himself, two squads in compromised positions if the Ragon decided to attack.

His second-in-command, Davor Katić, seemed to have the same confusion as him "Seems the blue lady really doesn't care for humans, wants as many to get killed as she can get away with" he whispered back in French, careful to keep his voice down amongst the hustle and bustle of the trench line. The use of French was unnecessary, due to the translator beads, but Marc still appreciated it, he rather missed the days when he could talk privately in his mother tongue without everyone understanding him or those he spoke with. Davor had a special dislike of any creature that was blue, especially the Inuv, and the lanky, barely organic, Tuesaaya qualified as that shade. Marc couldn't quite blamed Davor for it, his first experience with the Inuv had been an attempted mugging that had left Davor with a nasty scar the ran from right clavicle to just beneath his armpit.

Still, Marc couldn't allow such dissention to be spoken so brazenly, cautioning Davor with a stern look that quietened him down. Davor's response was a mirthless grunt before returning to setting the range on his bolt-action blaster to where the Ragon lines were believed to be.

Taking the moment, Marc's eyes scanned the scene ahead of him, a quagmire that had only been made worse by the unending pounding it received from artillery. He was certain that, if he looked closely, he could probably spot a skeleton or two that had not been swallowed by the churned up mud, left behind from some previous routing the Federation had suffered. The Ragon were frustrating like that, the sheer numbers of the Federation seemed to be the only advantage of any use against them, an advantage that did not come cheaply.

"You see the pilot" one of his soldiers, David Purcell, asked, his eyes barely poking above the trench's parapet. Marc found David to be too cautious, bordering on cowardly, for his tastes and had sought to have him removed from the squad but such efforts had proved to be successful, so he was instead relegated into roles that didn't leave lives on the live, in this case he was often the pointman in urban combat. It was cruel, in a way, but if the entire squad was behind David, then David was most likely to get hit first and rid Marc of his coward problem.

"No, only that it's in that direction" he said, indicating with a nod towards where he thought he saw the parachute crumple upon landing.

A nod by David was all he replied before his head sank back beneath the trench parapet. Marc chuckled somewhat hollowly to himself, glancing back at David to see his pale skin. It was odd he hadn't become accustomed to the war yet, he'd been involved for nearly three months now and still seemed to not have gotten over his initial shock of what warfare was really like. Popping a rationed candy into his mouth, Marc returned his attention to the valley in front of them.

The brief silence, however, quickly bored him and he broached conversation again with Davor to pass the time.

"You hear about the Major?" he asked, again in French as he preferred it. Davor glanced around to ensure the only people that could hear them were those in the squad, all of them didn't broach well with authority and Davor hated it the most, he only followed Marc's orders because he liked him. Speaking negatively of the command was not an uncommon topic amongst them, especially as Marc's recent promotion to corporal had been so soon he hadn't quite adapted to how NCOs were meant to talk with their men.

"I've heard a lot of things about the Major, not many of which I like" Davor replied after a moment, once the foot traffic through the trenches had subsided.

Marc had a small grin "You hear she supports the aliens being a charge of Earth when we retake it" It was always a matter of [i[when[/i] amongst the squad, never if, as though recapturing Earth was an inevitability. Marc's revelation had a palpable reaction amongst the squad that were listening, a few spat dismissively into the well-trodden mud.

"You can't be serious" was all Davor could manage, his eyebrows furrowed in angered confusion "They're the damn reason we have to retake Earth".

Nodding in agreement, Marc continued "From what I've heard, she supports them coming to Earth as well, as though the aliens haven't defiled it enough.". He felt his own anger rise at the very notion, his hand instinctively reached for his cross necklace as a means to calm himself. Davor seemed to notice this slight movement as well.

"In God's Image" he muttered quietly, a handful of those presence muttering it in return. In God's Image was something that the squad was becoming increasingly rife with, a saying that had spread amongst the Christian survivors of Earth when greeted with the existence of aliens. It was a reaffirmation of sorts, reminding them that the alien's were not viewed so highly in the eyes of God as they were not made the same. The saying was partially the reason why Marc still struggled with interacting with the aliens, how could he? He'd spent his life as a devout Catholic and had found that the aliens were largely indifferent to his religion, something that disgusted him more.

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Puranas
Spokesperson
 
Posts: 101
Founded: Jul 31, 2019
Psychotic Dictatorship

Jacira Séera

Postby Puranas » Tue Jun 29, 2021 4:37 pm

Jacira frowned slightly as she contemplated the weapons before her. Her frown only deepened as she wondered what kind of sniper they must think she was by including the standard issue rifle in her pack; if not for light amplification hardware, the Taiyo probably had the weakest eyesight of the group with how dim other species called daylight.

“Just a waste of space,” she muttered.

Personally, she would have no issues ditching the long-rifle. Being designed for range and power, the LVII was useless in her hands….especially at range. She cocked an ear towards the nearby discussion regarding the rescue operation as she turned her attention to the second weapon.

“On top of that, take a couple of stretcher bearers and make sure there is someone with some medical experience beyond spraying foam into an open wound." Cohen shot a look toward Corporal Tuesaaya, a lanky, war-torn woman whose huge body was not now more than a mishmash of assorted protheses. She was quite the terror in battle, however, and could handle most any weapon with precision. "Though there will be casualties on the hill later so don't strip our medical personnel. There may be Ragon scouts in the area. Do not engage them unless you have no choice in the matter. If you are engaged. This is a rescue operation, but I don't want to lose anyone from the 6th so take no unnecessary risks. If that means moving someone who probably shouldn't be moved, move them anyway... but try to do it gently.

Inuma will call directions, and I'll be watching from right here. We'll let you know if we spot any Ragons moving in your area. If you have any questions, ask away, if not, I trust you all to use your initiative to overcome whatever obstacles you find in your path. Head to the smoke, get the pilot, get back here."

Jacira kept part of her mind on keeping an ear out for the rest of the conversation as she hefted the pistol. Though not field tested against live Ragons, she had been informed it used similar technology as the larger rifles yet in a much more compact package with an even slower rate of fire; humans who had seen it frequently called it things like Deagle and Magnum, apparently not caring that she would understand neither reference. As this weapon was clearly meant for near point blank range, her unaided eyes wouldn’t be as much of an issue. Hoping it really worked as advertised against a Ragon, she slipped the sidearm back into its holster after checking the mechanisms.

“Everyone ready?" she asked, continuing without actually waiting for a response, "Good. Get moving! Every minute spent thinking about your options is a minute you are giving the enemy to get into position. If you move quickly, you might not encounter any opposition at all."

The Taiyo woman cocked her other ear towards the conversation at this point. Though she would appear to be focused on maintaining her gear to any glancing her way, the observant would notice her ears flexed towards the command bunker. To most, it would seem inconsequential, but those who knew the Taiyo would recall tales of multitasking that put what Jacira was doing to shame.

“Smoke, blood, and fire." Ivan rambled. "The smells of a field of battle. Almost exhilarating, if only our enemy weren't monsters that want to turn us into cattle. Hah. I hate them. What I would do to see their world burn..."

Picking up one of the few pieces of gear she had brought from home, Jacira couldn’t help but raise an eyebrow when the breeze brought Ivan’s words to her ears. Though she didn’t like advertising Taiyo hearing, she wouldn’t deny it came in handy for both her line of work as well as when she was on lookout duty…though, a small smile crossed her face for a moment as she thought the words, ear out duty in her case.

Returning her attention to the apparent metal pole in her grasp, she hit the toggle and noted how smooth the operation was as it extended to its full quarterstaff-like length. Twisting her wrist slightly, she checked the balance before hitting the toggle to retract the weapon back to its compact travel form. Ragon dermis may be tougher to puncture by modern firearms and blades, she mused as she checked a second staff - frowning slightly as the extension action was jerky - but blunt force trauma was universally dished out by the right hands….though she knew her lack of training on these made her anything but.

Setting aside each item that needed maintenance, she continued going through her gear. As she worked, part of Jacira’s mind considered her past interactions with the survivors from Earth. Though it had died down in the time since she had joined Orphan, there were still humans that either openly leered at her or wore expressions as if she was some sort of demon - when they didn’t look apathetic. In the case of the former, she had pondered experimenting out of curiosity, but the latter baffled her; as a Taiyo, she was externally almost identical in appearance to the displaced species.

Turning her attention to the first staff, she toggled the zoom feature of her goggles and began going over things. With a pick-like tool, she pried grains of detritus that had gotten wedged within the joints. Allowing her mind to wander as she worked, Jacira flashed back to the hike up the hill: it had been hard to miss those treating things as if they were on a field trip and those among the group who took things more seriously. Then again, she did realize, Orphan wasn’t exactly a professional military service.

Her pondering was interrupted as one of the soldiers half dragged a compatriot to where she was seated.

“Sorry to disturb ya, ma’am,” the able-bodied Gorial explained politely, “bloody fool wasn’t paying attention and a weak section of the wall collapsed onto him.”

Jacira cocked an eye towards the deep gash in the Berdikon’s leg. In her time as part of Orphan, the Taiyo had earned a reputation as one of the more approachable members of the medical staff. In truth, every patient she cared for added to her first hand experience regarding the physiology of that species, so it was a reputation she was glad to further boost.

“Mud will be a pain to clean,” she observed as she studied the wound, “but at least you prevented bleeding out.”

The Gorial shrugged awkwardly before responding with a clearly embarrassed tone of voice.

“Eh,” he replied awkwardly, “sorta remembered that….lecture you gave.”

Both of Jacira’s eyebrows darted towards her hairline. The ‘lecture’ in question was more correctly defined as a drunken rant about the lives lost due to the incompetence of the line-and-file soldiers regarding proper emergency first aid measures. While she didn’t quite know how to react to this bit of news, it did make her happy that someone had actually bothered to pay attention.

“Lost a real good friend in my early days in Orphan,” came the unbidden explanation, “got his leg pinned real good under a boulder the ten of us couldn’t lift…..”

“You had to amputate,” she finished for him as the Gorial looked away with a nod of confirmation, “but blood toxicity set in.”

“Yeah…” he clearly had to muster himself up to discuss the memory, “took poor fool days to die and we couldn’t do anything for the pain.

“Don’t have the hands for a career change,” he rambled on as Jacira had the Berdikon lay down on the table and began work by numbing the tissue around the wound, “but began carrying around extra med packs after that,” he admitted as she administered a cleaning agent to get rid of most of the mud and other foreign substances, “but, after hearing you that night,” she didn’t even look up as she checked to make sure no major vessels or arteries had been damaged, “decided to apply for a crash course. Can’t do what ya do, Doc, but can at least learn what I can to try and keep ‘em alive until I can get them to someone who can.”
Last edited by Puranas on Tue Jun 29, 2021 4:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Dyelli Beybi
Negotiator
 
Posts: 6163
Founded: Antiquity
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Dyelli Beybi » Tue Jul 06, 2021 3:26 pm

The Rescue Team (minor time skip)

Despite the relatively shallow gradient, the fact that there was no road down the side of the hill the team had been dispatched down, made the journey towards the plane relatively tough. The team went from marching through waist high grass-type plants, to scrambling over low walls, to trudging through scattered copses. At one point they crossed a sunken lane. There was no traffic on it; all the civilians had long since been evacuated, though it didn't look like many people lived out here anyway.

A number of the plants were flowering, throwing up huge, showy blooms, mostly in blue or purple; the result of Greskia's peculiar mineral composition. Much like on earth the flowers drew insectoids, some of which were the biting kind, though the non-Berdikons alone - apparently iron based blood didn't register as blood to these creatures.

For some of the older humans, the countryside was vaguely reminiscent of parts of Northern France or Southern England. There was good visibility from the hill, but once you descended from the heights you ended up in a maze of small fields and hedgerows where ambush was a very distinct possibility. Thankfully, the Federation was defending the area, rather than trying to dig the Ragons out of it. Thankfully, the smoke from the downed fighter provided a pretty solid homing beacon. Finding it wouldn't be too difficult.


Meanwhile, further up the hill

Cohen maintained her position in the forward bunker she seemed to have designated as the observation post, scanning the horizon for enemy contacts. Eventually, after a long, period of silence, she pointed excitedly out towards the north-east, "Movement by the old farmhouse. About two miles away?" she suggested, before handing the binoculars she had been using to whomever was in her vicinity, "Looks like two Ragons, full combat armour, moving on all fours."

Ragons didn't usually move bipedally in combat. They were a pretty big target if they did. Instead they usually moved about on all fours, operating their weapon with their prehensile tails which were, for all intents and purposes, an extra limb. Full combat armour made them about as difficult to take down as a main battle tank, though it did seem to hamper movement somewhat and most run of the mill Ragon troopers tended to wear heavy helmets, pauldrons and back armour, leaving their limbs, tail and belly (if they stood up) less well protected.

"Don't think that group will be any threat to the team going for the wreck, but keep an eye on them. And keep an eye out for other scouting parties that they might blunder into in the alien bocage," she instructed.

So caught up was she in the scouting party, that Cohen completely missed the movement on the horizon. There were more Ragons out there and they were heading straight on a collision course with the 6th's position, along with the other Divisions in the valley. There was still time to bring the pilot back, but it might be cutting it fine if they needed to stretcher them back to friendly lines...

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Europa Undivided
Ambassador
 
Posts: 1423
Founded: Jun 18, 2019
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Europa Undivided » Wed Jul 07, 2021 3:30 am

Ivan Ivanovich Ivanovsky
Greskia


For some of the older humans, the countryside was vaguely reminiscent of parts of Northern France or Southern England. There was good visibility from the hill, but once you descended from the heights you ended up in a maze of small fields and hedgerows where ambush was a very distinct possibility. Thankfully, the Federation was defending the area, rather than trying to dig the Ragons out of it. Thankfully, the smoke from the downed fighter provided a pretty solid homing beacon. Finding it wouldn't be too difficult.


The recovery team kept moving forward unto their destination, the fallen pilot that had dire need for rescue. Ivan looked down, and up to the sky, and to the sides. He may have been a soldier in the past, fighting to further the interests of the Russian Federation within the Sol System, but this was by no means a very familiar sight. He was a Tritonian He lived within greenhouses and domes, and not until the evacuation tp Earth did he ever go outside without a vacuum suit.

Ivan glanced down towards the flowers that grew on the hillside. A long time ago, he only knew plants as being grown on hydroponic facilities, as there was very little sunlight on Triton. The temptation to pick a flower and gaze at its alien composition lingered in his head for a while, but he threw that thought aside as he simply holstered his gun and kept going. This was no time to look upon pretty plants, or the creatures that drew out nectar for sustenance. This was a time of war. A time when deaths are just a statistic.

This land was certainly something. Throughout most of his life, he had never even seen an open countryside like this; that is, until he and the other human survivors set off in their journey that ended with most of them being killed by Ragon engineered fauna and their machines. What were they thinking... trying to change what was already done? That was madness. Did it ever do anything?

Coming across the bocage, Ivan began eyeing the surroundings more suspiciously. There were a lot of places in here for a crouching Ragon to hide in. As big as they were, they could still conceal themselves, just as how the soldiers of the old nations of Earth would put hide tanks and anti-tank guns under plentiful amounts of vegetation and deceptive coverings in order to lay down an ambush. This time, there wouldn't the thing about hearing the revs of vehicle engines. One moment, they'll be walking through a series of hedges. In the next, the trap will be sprung, and it will be another battle for survival where the odds of living through it all would be very low. What did he have to live for, anyway? Anyone that mattered had died. Sometimes, he wondered if he just wanted to die. But the primordial urges of survival would keep tugging on, piecing his sanity back together.

"I don't like it here." Ivan commented, glancing at every row hedge and abandoned house, half-expecting a Ragon with a gun operated with its tail hiding behind the thing. "Perfect place for ambushes and surprise encounters. We should hurry."

Ivan could never forget the past. How could he? It was his failure to protect them that led to their capture by the damn beasts that came straight out of the gates of hell. Precious children, the sons of his commander and friend, now long gone into the ravenous maws of their foe that had a taste for the flesh of humanity.
Futurist ~ Reformed ~ RPer~ #WritingCommunity ~ Asian ~ Trad ~ Troll ~ Discord: The Trollmaster General#7123
"FRESH AIR UPON MY SKIN IS LIKE THE FLENSING DAGGERS OF A THOUSAND THOUSAND MENIAL URCHINS GOING AT A SACK OF POTATOES. MY EXISTENCE IS FRAUGHT WITH FALLS AND POINTLESS ANGST IN THE MIDST OF THIS DISGUSTING REALITY. THE LIGHT BURNS! FOR I HAVE NEVER BEEN WORTHY TO WA-[bird noise]".

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The Imarian Monarchy
Bureaucrat
 
Posts: 59
Founded: Jan 22, 2018
Father Knows Best State

Postby The Imarian Monarchy » Tue Jul 13, 2021 5:40 pm

Hill 7382
Dhadusa Bhaisigneeth

Standing in the lead trench with her rifle resting on trench parapet, Cpl. Bhaisigneeth was peering into the valley watching for any hostile movement down the hill, she just staring into the still fields in bloom hoping for anything to pop up to get the thrill of engagement that she was hooked on since her first combat experience, dropping back down from the parapet. She started to check on her magazines as part of a mindless check. After the magazines and the tip of the first capacitor for anything thing that would cause a malfunction, she checked the pouches for her combat stims, figuring that when the Ragon force eventually shows up, they'd be of use.
Last edited by The Imarian Monarchy on Wed Jul 14, 2021 9:53 am, edited 1 time in total.

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