Author Topic: Wolf-One  (Read 1229 times)


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« on: September 03, 2009, 08:21:59 PM »
It was a clear blue sky, stretching endlessly without blemish or even the softest puff of clouds.  A lone sea gull soared along the warm winds, wings spread wide and batting gently to keep it aloft.  The bird slowly arched along the wind currents, then with a single elegant bob of it’s head it banked down to pass a sky scraper.  It was reflected perfectly in the mirror-like windows of the building, circling slowly around the massive structure.  The tops of other buildings reflected off the windows, great antenna and satellite dishes reaching to the sky.

The sea gull continued to circle the building, moving slowly lower past the cold reflective windows.  But slowly the mood changed; no longer did the day feel warm and stretching to the horizon.  The buildings loomed in oppressively.  No lights flashed on the antennas, none showed in along the dark shadowed sides of the buildings.  Slowly lower, ever circling the building.

A group of impassive windows were gone, both they and even the solid structure of the building gone.  A great hole seemed to pass straight through the sky scraper, steel girders melted and warped.  Then the windows returned, and the buildings shown in their reflection were no longer the iron juggernauts of the modern world.  Many were broken and damaged, some ended as jagged wrecks missing countless upper floors.

The sea gull suddenly seemed agitated, wings beating furiously and it dived and rolled into another hole that passed through the building.  The bird fought against the complicated wind currents to get through the hole.  The place was a wreck, but it was obvious the damage was years old.  A skeleton still sat at a charred desk, it’s bones picked clean from time, not fire.  The bird wasn’t far from the streets of the city now, and it burst out of the ruined building into the next street.  The damage was more severe there, with hundreds of shattered windows and even some buildings little more then skeletal ruins from fires that had raged unchecked.

But the moment of calm was ruined again, the sea gull grew agitated once more, calling worriedly and flapping it’s wings in a full panic, desperately trying to gain altitude.  Feathers burst free in it’s efforts and it started to climb too late.  There was a bright flash of light and what few windows that were still unbroken bubbled and flexed.  The sea gull froze in mid air as a bright beam of light sliced through the air meters away from it.  Then it was gone in a flash of fire and smoke that was swept away with the passing light, the windows cooled into unnatural shapes and shattered from the stress.

The laser beam passed through the sky, hardly a heartbeat from origin to target.  It left a wake of destruction across the face of the sky scraper.  It’s target narrowly avoided, and the beam charred through another building, leaving a cloud of dust and smoke that burst out into the street.  A second beam joined it bare seconds later, adding another hole to the wrecked building, then there was a moment of silence as the smoke choked the air.

The chatter of machinegun fire pierced the sky suddenly, as a massive man-shaped machine stepped back onto the street again.  It stood three stories tall, both arms ending in weapon systems, the left arm-gun ablaze as it returned fire, a rain of 25mm casings falling to the rubble-strewn road at it’s feet.  Violence exploded throughout the ruined city, the echoing chatter of weapons fire, the shriek of missiles and eerie silence of lasers and burning metal and concrete.

The mecha was joined by a lumbering tank that rumbled onto the road from another street, powerful treads climbing over and crushing burned out cars.  It’s turret swiveled with intent and the 120mm cannon barked to life, and power-armour encased infantry opened fire from broken windows and craters and behind busted cars.  They filled the air with lead and rockets and missiles, throwing everything they had down range towards the source of the energy beams.

The enemy units held a severe technological advantage.  Flashes of light sparked off of energy shields made of thousands of individual hexagon-shaped shields that flashed or shattered under the deluge of metal shots.  Even when shattered there was only a hole in their defenses for a scarce second or two, letting a few stray shots through that marked and scored the glistening metal skin.  More human-like in appearance then the comparatively blocky, heavily armored slug-throwers, they were agile and quick.  Their weapon systems outclassed the others by years, and instead of the built-in guns of the others these ones carried rifles.  Three walked forwards into the deluge of weapons fire uncaring, relying on their energy shields for protection.

One’s rifle came up and there was a bright flash of light from it’s barrel, then another beam lanced down the street.  Even encased in their powered armor, infantry were turned to ash simply from being too close to the beam’s trail.  It struck the tank, melting a hole into it’s side just below the turret, the entire frame warping like a melting candle, the metal glowing red with heat.  The ammunition cash exploded and the tank went up in a rain of debris and smoke.

“Tango-1-Niner is gone!  Repeat, Tango-1-Niner silenced!  Three Vipers advancing West-South-West Grid 14776 by 98221!  Wolf-One to Camper-Sierra!  Request assistance!”  Wolf One was the designation of the mecha standing at the end of the street, now the only piece of heavy equipment holding the choke point against the advancing enemy, it’s 25mm cannon creating a constant rain of shattered energy as it chewed up the enemy’s energy shield.

One of the advancing three enemy mecha sported an over-developed power plant and complicated emitter system, the source of the trio’s protective shield, while the other two represented the brunt of the group’s offensive power, their powerful energy rifles narrowly missing Wolf One with two more shots.

Where Wolf-One broadcasted on a standard wide channel, thoroughly encrypted against enemy ears, Camper-Sierra was a narrow band directional broadcast picked up only by the target, in this case Wolf One.  The voice was eerily quiet, hardly a whisper nearly over-shadowed by the background chatters of weapons fire and explosions.  “Camper-Sierra to Wolf-One.  Eyes on, situation confirmed.  Open ‘er up.”

Signal given, Wolf-One’s mecha dropped to a knee, crushing a car beneath the massive armour-slabbed knee.  It’s right arm came up, 40mm gattling cannon bearing down on the advancing enemy.  It began to cycle with a deafening whir before the tell-tale bark of cannon fire tore down the street leaving visible distortions in the air as they passed.  The rate of fire was much slower then the 25mm machine cannon, but each impact against the shield destroyed dozens of linked hexagons, leaving openings in the shield that took more then a second to patch.

Amidst the roar of war, the bark of a sniper’s rifle went totally unnoticed.  The pull of the trigger went unnoticed.  The result however, was critical.  The shot passed through the hole in the energy shield and struck the exposed power plant.  There was a dance of electrical energy that reached out across the lightly armored back of the enemy mecha, then the shield came down in a glistening rain of energy.

The three were torn apart by the combined fire of the infantry and Wolf-One, power plants exploding, wreckage strewn across the war torn street.  “Camper-Sierra to Wolf-One.  Eyes on, Tango-1-Three, Tango-1-Five, silenced.  1-Actual sends, break contact.  Repeat, 1-Actual, break contact.”

The gattling cannon rattled to a stop, running out of ammo even before Wolf-One stopped firing.  The infantry were already moving, pulling back in the brief reprieve of the destroyed enemy mecha.  They moved in inelegant bounds or ugly predatory lopes, leaving Wolf-One alone as it too started to withdraw, ammo reserves near depleted.  “Wolf-One to Wolves, status check.”

The radio chattered to life with varying voices responding in turn, “Wolf-Two.  Casualties within acceptable parameters, Vipers neutralized.  Withdrawing.”  “Wolf-Three, Tango-1-Four mobility kill, attaching tow-winch and withdrawing APB (Aussie-Peel-Back), Vipers neutralized.”  “Wolf-Four, Vipers Neutralized.  Tango-1-Five, Tango-1-Three are gone, Sir.  Vipers neutralized, heavy casualties.  More contacts advancing fast.  APB.”

“Wolf-One, copy.  Wolf-Two, divert to Wolf-Four and render assistance.  Wolf-One to Tango-1-One.  Cover Wolf-Three withdrawal, do not engage.  Repeat, do not engage.”  Wolf-One began to move, one last look at the scattered remnants of his assistant tank and the dead crew burnt alive inside.  He began thundering towards the secondary line, intent on rearming then helping the rest of his unit withdraw from the battlefield.

Without the working arms of the enemy mecha, Wolf-One had to rely on an extensive supply system to reload in the field.  Specially designed transport trucks carried huge magazines for the arm mounted weapons, and they were brought as close to the front line as possible.  One break in the line and the slow moving vehicles were lambs for the slaughter.  The sounds of battle were growing more sporadic throughout the city, and as Wolf-One turned onto another broad street he was joined by a squad of armor-clad infantry in full retreat, their officer radioing up to him.

“Sh*t I’m glad to see you!  We’re being tailed, they’re right behind us!”  The officer sounded young and frightened, breathing heavily more from panic then exertion.  Their suits were far from elegant, but they assisted and enhanced the infantry’s physical abilities.  Running for miles was no big issue in one of the MkII (xs) suits, as long as their power supplies lasted.

The towering mecha slowed to a stop, crushing a van under foot in the process and the retreating infantry circled around it like ants, and it pivoted at the hips to bring it’s weapon systems to bear on the direction they were running from.  Ammo reserves were low, and he knew he couldn’t stop any concerted push down the street with what he had left.  Information flashed across his screens, and he briefly focused on the status info on the infantry officer speaking to him, “Wolf-One to (xs)-Alpha-Actual.  Maintain radio discipline.  Withdraw to Niner-Line, hold position.”

Target telemetry began blinking to life on his screens as enemy vehicles and infantry began to fill the far end of the street.  Just as their mecha held an alarming advantage, so too did their ‘conventional’ vehicles.  Hover tanks glided three meters off the ground, powerful anti-gravity emitters allowing them to sail over the abandoned vehicles and piles of rubble.  Their own troops sported power armor as well, but they too were much more advanced.  Lighter and less bulky then the MkIIs, the had a predatory grace as they charged up the street.

A sudden barrage of energy-weapon fire began to pelt Wolf-One.  The small arms of the infantry were a non-issue, doing little more then singe the paint.  The tanks, however, were another matter.  Wolf-One stumbled from the first impact against his mecha’s torso armor, wincing as the heat gauges spiked alarmingly before heat-sinks managed to disperse the energy.  His machine took a step ‘backwards’, the torso facing fully opposite to the legs, the compensating movement taking him a bit farther from the advancing enemy.

With no ammo left for his 40mm cannon, he cycled it down and brought his left arm up.  “Wolf-One to Niner-Line.  Request fire support, Grid 22776 by 90179, fire for effect.”  The co-ordinates given, the tactical data on his screens changed, small modules on the shoulders of his mecha spinning to bring laser-designators pointing at the buildings on either side of the street ahead of the advancing enemy force.

“Niner-Line to Wolf-One.  Request confirmed.  Darts enroute.”  He grinned fiercely, painfully aware of the twenty second countdown between launch and arrival, and opened up with his 25mm machine cannon.  The lead enemy tank, it’s main gun just starting to glow again as a fresh charge built up in it’s capacitors, was suddenly chewed up with armor-defeating shells, a series of holes opening up along it’s left side.  The two port anti-grave emitters tearing free of the weakened frame. 

The tank spun violently to the side, crashing to the ground as the two emitters bounded into the sky then plummeted back down when they lost power and momentum, the heavy modules crashing onto the turret of the light-skinned tank, the energy built up in it’s capacitors released in a violent arch of electricity that vaporized the nearest enemy infantry.
A second tank fired and struck Wolf-One again, and more warning screens popped up across his screens.  -Left leg actuator damaged.  Mobility down 71%.  Left leg pistons damaged.  Hydraulic systems damaged.  Hydraulic leak detected.  Combat speed down 63%.  Combat speed estimated 17klicks per hour.-  Tendrils of smoke drifted up from the tortured leg of his mecha, rolling across it’s frame and obscuring the view from his tactical cameras.  The computer adjusted instantly, switching to the secondary camera off his right shoulder.

“Wolf-One to Niner-Line.  Heavy contact, multiple Vipers.  Sending status.”  He forwarded his mecha’s data, then fired another burst at the approaching tanks, cursing under his breath as it narrowly avoided, banking to the side as his shots tore the road apart beneath it.  The countdown on his screen flashed the last three seconds brightly, his computers displaying the enemy advance as a distinctly colored area and a red dotted line cut across the street in line with where the laser designators were targeting.

A dozen missiles came swooping down the street, contrails of smoke casting dark shadows across the wide city street as they dived towards their targets.  The missiles broke apart just before impact, each turning into dozens of smaller penetrators that peppered the two buildings on either side of the street, leaving puffs of smoke and concrete dust as they vanished.  120 smaller detonations tore the buildings structures apart, and then Wolf-One’s torso pivoted to line up with it’s legs again and started hobbling away as fast as he could.

The enemy tried to scatter to safety, but the buildings came down too fast, filling the street with rubble that muffled the explosions of the crushed enemy tanks.  Massive winds buffeted Wolf-One, debris crashed off his back and sent up collision warnings.  Status updates warned of low hydraulic fluids, secondary system damage, and all sorts of other bad news as he finally cleared the slowing cloud of dust, his mecha laboring down the street on one unresponsive leg.

“Tango-1-One to Wolf-One.  Wolf-Three has reached Nine-Liner, beginning extraction.”

“Nine-Liner to Wolf-One.  All Wolves have reached our location.  Valkyries inbound.  (xs)-Alpha squad undergoing extraction.  Withdraw from combat zone ASAP.”

“Wolf-One to Nine-Liner, roger and out.  Wolf-One to Tango-1-One.  Owe you a beer.”

The scream of sub-sonic jet engines flashed over head as three Valkyrie fighter-bombers passed overhead, unleashing all hell onto known enemy concentrations.  Dozens of laser beams lanced the sky, causing missiles to explode before impact and cutting one of the Valkyries out of the sky in a brilliant cloud of fire and shrapnel, then dozens of explosions lit the skyline as more missiles found their target amongst the crowded streets.

Wolf-One labored towards the edge of the city core, emerging into a fire ravaged area that had once been suburbs.  Wolf Squadron waited him as the supply trucks of Nine-Liner support group began to rumble to life and speed away, helicopters were taking off with the surviving infantry onboard, and they started the long retreat to base.
« Last Edit: March 15, 2014, 12:47:46 AM by Lord Palatine »


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