Gender: Male Age: 53 Location: Las Vegas, Nv
|Introduction: Imperial Sword|
I straightened my uniform before standing and taking the leash to the float. It was brand new and held my Kit, EQ and weapon’s bags. I walked off the shuttle and entered one of the riches starports in the empire. I ignored officers and enlisted as they snapped to attention. In the main concourse was a sharply dressed colonel.
He stepped in front of me and saluted, “sergeant England.”
I looked at him carefully, “Yes sir.”
He smiled and turned to fall in beside me, “I decided to pick you up myself. I wanted to meet you in person.”
I glanced at him and let him stir me towards a side exit, “And you are?”
He grinned, “Colonel Nathen.”
I nodded, “my new commander.”
He smiled, “Your commander is the emperor. I’m just the next in the chain of command.”
He gestured to a waiting vehicle, “Time is limited I’m afraid.”
I put my bags in back as a sergeant stepped out and looked around ignoring me. As soon as we got in the colonel turned to face me, “You have two days to gear up before we move.”
I glanced at the sergeant, “Two days? I thought the Swords only…”
He held up a hand, “You came in barely under the wire. We need a striker and you are it. In two days the Swords are slipping away.”
I nodded, “environment?”
He raised an eyebrow and I grinned, “Just wondering what to load.”
He glanced at the sergeant, “Penetrators.”
The sergeant nodded and I sat back. The colonel looked around, “Tell me. On Gecko, why did you move in?”
I looked at him until he turned to see me, “They were acting in a way that told me the fleet prisoners would be killed. I could have waited but if I did their deaths would have been on my hands.”
He smiled, “Alone with support a day away?”
I shrugged, “it wasn’t the first time I was outnumbered or faced the enemy alone. I was going to lead them into the forest but the commander turned in at the box canyon so I was stuck.”
He laughed, “You know officers, can’t find their ass with both hands and a light.”
The colonel looked at the sergeant driving, “Get him to the armory and then over to supply. Tell Senior Sergeant…Ginger, to put him on the range.”
The driver nodded and pulled over to let him out. I started to get out but he turned, “I’ll see you in two days sergeant.”
Ten minutes later the vehicle pulled into an underground garage. I got out and went back to get my bags as the sergeant waited. I glanced at him as we started walking, “So why did I have to wear all the flash?”
He grinned, “The colonel wanted to rub a few noses. They diverted your shuttle to a primary pad and half the former regent’s council were made to walk to a far gate.”
I looked at him, “Why?”
He snorted, “Because you were silly enough to do what a soldier is supposed to do.”
The lift took us up a dozen floors before letting us out. The sergeant led me down to a corner room and thumbed the lock. Inside he nodded to a wide bed which was not standard, “Drop your bags and show me your weapons.”
I grinned, “A please would be nice.”
I tossed my kit and EQ bag to one end and set the weapon bag down before opened it. He snorted and reached for the assault rifle, “This goes into storage, you can keep the Swift.”
I looked at him, “And just what is going to replace my rifle?”
He grinned, “A silenced MP14, bored out to take 12mm.”
I laughed, “Okay, that sounds like it has a punch.”
He held out his hand, “Sergeant Milford Getts. You can call me Blocker.”
I took his hand, “Pendragon.”
The next day and a half was filled with weapons and detailed briefings. The silenced MP14 was a dream that would punch through a tank. It was just over half the length of my assault rifle and weighted a quarter of the weight. Besides the MP14 and my Swift I had acquired a stubby twenty millimeter Thumper.
The barrel was thirty centimeters long and it only had a pistol grip. It almost looked like it had a second barrel underneath the regular barrel. That was the fixed magazine that held the twenty high explosive rounds used for breaching.
I also had a new fiber weave force screen under my uniform, hopefully to keep from getting shot again. I slipped out in civilian clothes with Senior Sergeant Ginger McCartney by my side. She was one of the few females in the company and one of the deadliest marksmen I knew. She hugged my arm as we walked the street and batted her eyes at me, “You know Sergeant Morgan sent me a private note.”
I glanced at her and smiled, “And what did Samantha say?”
Ginger laughed as her eyes swept around us, “She said you have balls of battle steel and a heart of butter.”
I grinned, “She was just trying to flatter me.”
She grinned as she turned to walk backwards as if to talk to me, “True, she did say if the shit hit the fan to grab your gear and tag along as you killed everything that came your way.”
I laughed and pulled her as I side stepped. We walked into the narrow opening and followed it to a door that opened as we approached. Ginger walking in ahead of me and the door closed behind us. We went down and she grabbed a bar and swung up onto a fast moving belt. I waited until it was clear and followed her.
It was a long ride in the dark before a red light flashed and I reached up to snatch a bar and swing off the belt. I looked around at the rest of the company and a moment later they knelt. I joined them as a young man stepped out in front of us, “My Swords! The Duke of Brennen has issued us an ultimatum. He has betrayed his oath to the Empire and to me. I give you the order, Seize him and bring him or his body before me.”
He looked out at us and his eyes locked on mine, “Fail not my trust.”
He turned and two uniformed men slipped him through a door. We stood and men began filtering through another door. Two hours later the shuttles were docking with what looked like a cargo transport. I grabbed my bags and walked into what could only be described and a midget carrier. It could carry up to six stealth shuttles plus their crews and the entire company of swords.
For the next two weeks we rehearsed and practiced until I was doing it in my sleep. We were headed to Brennen which has been settled a long time. Our mission was simple; three shuttles go down, one on each flank and the one with strikers hitting the manor. I was part of the strikers and was supposed be on the inside of the left wing. We were supposed to secure the left wing of the manor itself.
The strikers consisted of a sixty man assault team. Twenty on the right and twenty on the left, the last twenty were to enter the residence and secure the duke. While the duke knew we might be coming, he didn’t know some of his servants had already been turned. Scan vids with his bio had been planted throughout his manor so we would know where he was.
The shuttle screamed down through the atmosphere and braked at the last minute before spinning and dropping to the ground. Even before the shuttle touched down the ramp was dropping and we were running out. Caltrops guns ripped through the first half before they had even moved away from the shuttle, I knew right then we had been suckered.
I stopped and shot the four caltrops before moving towards the left. Twelve of us swiftly moved into place killing everything in the way. The right seemed to be struggling but the entry team had hit a major block and were down to two people. I slapped Blocker and tossed my head and he nodded.
I spun and jogged towards the sound of fighting, “Pendragon coming in from the left.”
I peek around a wall and cursed when I saw Ginger down. Sergeant Maxwell was struggling to pull her behind a thick stone pot. I could see his left hand missing and lifted my rifle as I stepped around the wall. I walked straight for the front door with my rifle at my shoulder. I fired a round with each step, killing anyone that moved.
A round tore through my left side and I spun before bring my rifle up and shooting three rounds through the armored shelter on the roof and killing the sniper hiding there. I started limping towards the door again as I changed the magazine and went back to killing soldiers that were shooting from windows.
As I approached the front door I pulled Thumper and fired into the center of the doors. The explosion ripped the doors into splinters and I let my rifle drop onto its sling and pulled my Swift. I fired Thumper into four soldiers rushing out a tall window and stepped into the manor. I extended my Swift and fired four times rapidly to kill four men rushing out a door.
The impact in the back of my right shoulder spun me and I brought up my pistol to kill the man that had just shot me, luckily it didn’t go through the fiber weave force screen. I pulled slim ghost glasses and slipped them on. The image I saw was a faint holographic blue print of the manor with a single dot where the duke was.
I could easily see through the holograph and started walking. The large foyer had me firing the Swift into the floor. The walls on each side slid back to show three combat armored suits. I fired Thumper into the three on the left and fired rapidly with the Swift through the helmets of the three on the right.
I walked across the foyer glancing at the three shattered suits on the left before taking a set of stairs. I absently pointed Thumper above and behind me at the landing and fired. I fired the Swift into the two men who staggered out of the smoke and debris. I turned left to head towards the dot that was the duke and fired into the ceiling of the hall going the other way.
As it collapsed behind me, I killed a lightly armored man that stepped out with a rifle to his shoulder. I blew open the door he had come out of as I approached and walked through the wreckage. I walked out of the smoke and debris and killed three soldiers trying to cover the richly dressed man that was the duke.
I crossed the room slipping both weapons back into holsters before spinning the duke to the wall. I slammed him against the wall as he coughed and choked and slipped a pair of plastic restraints on him. I yanked him around and started back the way I had come, “This is Pendragon. I have the target and I’m coming out the front.”
I drew my Swift and walked out into the hall. Four soldiers were standing at the top of the stairs. I didn’t wait for them to react and started firing. Two seconds later I was dragging the duke down the stairs and past their bodies. I extended my Swift as I walked down the last few steps and began shooting into the gathered soldiers in the foyer.
They scrambled to find cover or return fire but none made it. I changed the magazine as I pushed the duke across the body strewn floor. I pushed him out the front door to see several Swords waiting. I shoved him into the hands of Blocker and turned as I holstered my Swift and brought up my rifle. As we backed to the waiting shuttle, we gathered up any Sword still alive.
The shuttles took off hot and wove around each other as they headed towards the sky. The large penetrator that had punched through my fiber weave body screen had gone straight through. By the time we reached home my wound was mostly healed. Ginger and colonel Nathen both were still recovering. Our shuttle was met by a full battalion of soldiers.
After everything was over the duke was hung and those supporting him were in hiding. I was discreetly awarded a second Solar Cross as well as a promotion to Senior Sergeant.
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