Gender: Male Age: 53 Location: Las Vegas, Nv
Walking off the shuttle into a carrier with a regular line regiment was almost a relief. The regiment commander had personally requested me and requested I wear my dress uniform. I ignored the bosan’s call to attention and walked across the hanger as everyone stopped what they were doing and came to attention.
I nodded to the senior sergeant checking Id tags and slid mine across. He thumbed them and quickly handed them back, “Thank you Sergeant Major.”
I nodded and turned towards the hatch. My gear was to be brought to my quarters as I headed for the ships command bridge and a meeting with Sergeant Major Drake and Rear Admiral Noble. When I nodded to the guard at the hatch he glanced at me and then his eyes dropped to the ribbons and medals. He snapped to attention, “I’m sorry Sergeant Major but the command bridge is off limits.”
I nodded, “let the Admiral or Sergeant Major know I am here.”
He turned to the intercom and a moment later the hatched opened. Sergeant Major Drake was a tall slim grey haired man. He nodded to the guard and waved me in. He looked me up and down, “uncomfortable trip?”
I smiled, “Yeah.”
He laughed and nodded to the admiral across the room, “You got here just in time. We have a major problem on Taxus.”
I looked at him and he shrugged, “we have a rogue world regiment trying to occupy it.”
I nodded and he led me across as the admiral finished talking to three colonels and two light colonels. Four of them left as we approached. I saluted and he grinned, “you are a sight. The way my nephew talks you are made of battlesteel and smoke.”
I smiled, “So they say.”
He laughed and turned to the colonel, “This is Colonel Edward Mortros. You will be working with him.”
I nodded to the colonel who was looking me over curiously. The admiral sighed, “I had hoped we would only have normal routine to break you in but it seems a rogue world has gotten brave.”
I nodded, “The sergeant major told me a little sir.”
He nodded, “Well, get together with Edward. Your battalion is scheduled to lead the regiment.”
I nodded, “We’ll make it happen sir.”
He dismissed us and I followed the colonel out. He looked at me as we walked, “I was concerned you were a glory hound until I read your jacket.”
I snorted, “Stubborn would probably fit better.”
He grinned, “Well, welcome to the Demons.”
I grinned, “thank you.”
It was a long time before I was able to go to my quarters. I was looking to get out of the dress uniform. I opened the hatch and stepped in to see senior sergeant Morgan laying on my bed. I grinned, “Hey Sam, I was wondering when I would see you.”
She grinned, “I see you still haven’t learned to duck.”
I stripped and hung up the uniform before turning and walking to the bed, “I’m glad you aren’t in my unit.”
She laughed and pulled me close before kissing me. She caressed my face, “Ready for your real brief?”
I grinned and laid beside her, “Go.”
Sam started a detailed brief on each of the company commanders and top sergeants in my battalion. When she finished I was frowning, “If they are that bad why leave them?”
She sighed, “if you had spent longer coming up you would know it is sometimes who you know and not what you know.”
I nodded and lay back, “And we are leading the regiment onto the battlefield.”
Sam touched the fresh scar, “Make contingency plans.”
Samantha was more then right and as we got closer the more worried I became. The colonel was solid but the company commanders worried both of us. The Recon went in less then a day ahead off us and almost immediately the bad news began. The rogue world had plasma generators so we knew we would be losing people before we even landed and the shuttles couldn’t come in until they were destroyed.
Worse, the whole rouge world regiment was in defensive positions with heavy weapons. On a normal drop the officers are the first in and their companies follow them. We were loading the capsules when I got a call. I glanced at the colonel who was going over last minute details as he was strapping in. I waved the lieutenant back and knelt, “Captain Shin, Murphy and Adams refuse to drop.”
His eyes narrowed, “Tell their XO’s to take command and have the ship provost arrest them for cowardice in the face of the enemy. Implement plan Charlie too.”
I stood and moved away as I made the calls on the way to my capsule. The shuttles went as low as they could before kicking us out in a widely dispersed pattern. We lost almost a tenth of the battalion going down including the captain for the Widow Makers and the battalion XO. We consolidated quickly and I thought we were finally pulling together when the heavy weapons hit us.
The colonel was tossed through the air, his body mangled. The junior officers started to panic as I stepped in and barked orders. I sent the Widow Makers speeding for the heavy weapons locations and spread the other companies out to cover the other battalions as they started their drop runs.
I sent the Strikers which was a combat suited company after the plasma generators. That was when the rogue world soldiers hit us. A fast moving strike team broke through and headed straight for the command team. I didn’t even pause as I barking orders and lifted my MP14 to kill them.
I think that was what gave my people heart because the next moment a huge growl filled the comm as the whole battalion opened up at almost the same time and ripped the rogue worlders apart. The other battalions were down and flanking us as we pressed forward. The heavy weapons fell silent and the Strikers turned from destroying the generators to slash into the rear of the enemy.
That drove the heart out of them and they panicked and began surrendering in mass. Of the officers that went down with us, three Ensign’s returned unwounded. The rest were killed or wounded and out of action. Colonel Mortros had been badly wounded but survived. When the admiral landed his first action was to give me a field promotion to Lieutenant JG.
He confirmed it after everything was over as well as award me with another Distinguished Service Cross, at least this time I walked away without a wound.
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