Tides of War - Operation Alpha

Go down

Tides of War - Operation Alpha

Post by Offensive Bias on Mon Sep 27, 2010 4:14 pm

Okay, I know it's lengthy. But it took me a while to write. Please, read and comment. It's all I ask. It's not like it's as if you have anything to lose. And after all, you're not writing it, I am. So... Enjoy my first Halo FF for a LONG time.

Prologue: Hat Yai

“Clear to drop!” The pod thudded as the clamps were released, and the small entry vehicle plummeted towards the planet. One hundred Orbital Drop Shock Troopers zoomed towards the main continent of the planet named Hat Yai. The ships in space continued to fight, but a single cruiser noticed the pods, and began firing at them. Beams of plasma washed past the pods, illuminating the space in front of them. Suddenly, a pod was caught by a beam, disintegrating instantly. Then another, and another. “Keep your nerves! They can’t hit us all!” The voice of Major Sedavian boomed through the headpiece of the ODST troops. The Cruiser stopped firing, and unbeknownst to the ODST’s, the cruiser had taken two MAC rounds, and was tumbling through space.


The pod began to rattle and shake, the guns hitting at their restraints. The white faced private inside one of the pods gripped his harness tight, while a prayer whizzed through his head. “O my God, I belong to thee.” If the pod wasn’t jerking around so much, his knees would’ve buckled from the sheer terror he felt at that moment. His eyes stared fixedly at the planet coming slowly towards him. The tremor of the pod grew steadily more violent, and a thin screen of fire wrapped itself around the pod. He could see the continent now, its rainforests and tropical jungles staining the land green inside a canvas of blue. A strained and worried voice came over the com. “Is this normal? My pod’s shaking like crazy! She’s leaning way out of control!” There was a pause, when the voice came back, even more panicky. “I’m angling to the water! I can’t correct the course! What do I do?” The Private felt a terrible sensation of pity for the man.

Major Sedavian replied to him, “Son... I’m sorry. There’s nothing you can do. They don’t call us Helljumpers for nothing.” The voice never replied, resigned to its fate. The private felt his pod halt sickeningly, and straighten in an instant. The chute had deployed, slowing and straightening the descent slightly. He realised how low the pod was now, and the ground seemed to be coming at him faster, and faster. “It’s been an honour serving with you men.” The voice from earlier came back on. No sooner had he said the last word, than a crashing and sucking sound tore through the headpiece, hurting his ears. The sound cut out, and the Private counted down the five seconds until he hit the ground. When he hit, it was a horrible feeling. The stop was sudden, and the banging of the pod was so incredibly loud. He screamed at the noise, which did nothing to drown it out. He felt sick. He awkwardly smashed his palm into the release button, and the door sprang open.


The Private stumbled out and collapsed onto his knees. He fumbled with his helmet. He ripped it off just in time. Tossing it to the side, he vomited into the grass violently. He spat to clear his mouth, and stood shakily. He sighed wearily, and went to retrieve his helmet. He stuck it back on, and examined his weapons in the pod. The restraints had held tight, and his Assault Rifle and DMR rifle were fine. He filled his pouches with magazines, and slammed a clip into each weapon. He placed a combat knife in its sheath, and took a bandolier of grenades. Finally, he placed a small pistol into his holster and readied his Assault Rifle.


He heard a beep, and his TACMAP updated itself with the positions of the others. He found where he was, and saw a cluster of men a couple of miles to the North. The large base the Covenant had established took up a large chunk of the map. He began his march to the cluster of men, hearing his radio crackle. “This is Lieutenant Rahud; Major Sedavian has fallen out of range. He will not be available for our assault tonight. He has cleared me to go ahead and start without him. He has placed me in command effective immediately until his return. Head for the blue ring on your TACMAP, Rahud out.” The Private saw the blue ring around the cluster of troops. He jogged now, eager to get there and prove himself.


*************


The Private reached the Lieutenant without incident. There were still 24 ODST’s missing. Twelve of them were dead; the other twelve were closing in fast. The men had to scramble for cover every now and then, as regular Banshee and Spirit patrols scoured the jungle. The Private was taking a drink from his canteen, when Rahud called for volunteers. “I need men to head out with Sergeant Bailey and scout the base on the South and West sides. I want ideally 30 men to go with him. Anyone?” Everyone shot their hands in the air. He handpicked 30 men, the Private among them. “Okay good. Just scout, if things look too hot, just come back. You are not to engage unless absolutely necessary. If you must kill, try and do it without revealing your position. Okay? Good. Move out Helljumpers!”

The Private tramped through the jungle, with the men spread out. They crouched and stepped through the undergrowth, skirting around trees and making hand signals to communicate. Radio silence was key, especially now. A small red dot blinked on his motion sensor. He dropped to the ground and aimed towards the dot. In the failing light, he saw the outline of a tall, bird-like alien. Its weapon glowed a dull green, and it moved its head quickly from side to side, aware of the ODST movement. It struggled to see in the dark, and it activated its wrist shield. A shadow appeared behind it. It turned its head, and received a combat knife straight through its eye. It collapsed, at which point, the ODST dragged the blade noisily from the skull. The Private jogged to catch up with them.

A few minutes passed from the accident with the Jackal. A few other Covenant had been spotted, and silently taken down. A few of the men had their silencers with them, which made things all the easier. Sergeant Bailey signaled for the men to gather around the back of a large boulder. They crouched down, and took drinks and something to eat from their rations. Bailey spoke, his voice just carrying around the crude circle of nervous men. “Okay, listen up Marines. I’m picking up a distress signal from a pod pretty close by to here. Now, Rahud reports most of the men dead, but we can’t be sure. We could at least check this out, which is why we’re fanning out in five man teams. I want you, you, you and you with me. Got it? Good. Get into squads, and follow me. When I give the signal, which is this,” Sergeant Bailey held out his hand and stuck out three fingers, then waved his hand around. “You scatter and find appropriate places to fire from. Do not come out of cover unless you see me doing so first. Dismissed, men.” Bailey took his four men, and the others got into squads. The Private, had made friends in Boot. But they were all assigned to Harvest. There was Thomas, with the blonde hair and green eyes. Adam, with his outgoing behaviour and overall friendliness. And Sidney… The ex-Surgeon. He was a maniac, but he was the kind of crazy the military needed right now. The thing every one of the people in this group of friends had in common… They had all lost something on Harvest.

His squad was composed of all Privates and Corporals. No one who outranked the Sergeant had been picked. The four others with The Private were Corporal Haynes, Private Smirnoff, Corporal Denton and Private First Class Hanson. They all had standard issue Assault Rifles. Corporal Denton led the squad. “Okay, remember. Stay close to the Sergeant. When the signal is given, stay close to me.” The squads suddenly began to spread out, after a few seconds of moving forward. Denton whispered back. “On me!” The Private stayed close, tightening his grip on his DMR, and thumbing the safety off. Suddenly, little spots of rain dotted along his visor. The heated visor evaporated the rain, but the drops fell faster and faster, until there was a tropical downpour covering the entire continent. This was a regular occurrence…

He stayed with Denton, following him as he took up a position behind a tree. Pretty much the only cover available was the trees all around them. When The Private had taken cover behind a tree, he looked towards some bright lights splashing around ahead. He saw, illuminated for a few seconds, one of the HEV’s, and saw that it had crashed into the trees, causing it to tumble and spin. It had landed on its side. A quick glance inside showed that the power had gone out, and all indicators would have gone out. The impact would have scrambled his helmet and his radio, as simulations of crashes like this had shown multiple times. How the ODST inside had managed to activate his distress beacon was a miracle. However… The interesting thing about the crash site wasn’t the pod. It was the Covenant examining the pod. They had bright lights on their armour, showing the area in front of them as clear as day through the rain.

The lights also gave them away to the 30 ODST’s, aiming their sights at the unknowing Covenant. Their death was literally a moment away. A dark figure was slumped against a tree, its head drooped down, arms splayed across the ground, its legs bent inward, as though it had been thrown against the tree. The Private noted all of this in a mere 20 seconds. The others were quiet, and apprehension and tension was in the air. The Private crouched down, sliding his head and gun around the tree, to get a sight on the creatures. Four Grunts, two Jackals and another alien, tall and bigger than an average human. Its head was elongated, it had a slouched posture, bent knees, powerful build and it turned to face the area where The Private was hiding, blinding him momentarily. He gave a quiet gasp and quickly turned back behind the tree. The lights carried away from him, and he breathed a sigh of relief. He hadn’t been spotted.

He resumed his former posture, keeping his aim on the unfamiliar alien. It seemed to greatly dim its lights, and strode over to the slumped figure on the tree. It reached down, extending long fingers to probe its head. It lifted up the head and examined the face, before letting it droop back down, and making a sound that sounded like laughter to The Private. He realised then that the figure was human slightly lit up by the dimmed lights. The big alien turned away, and barked an order at the others. It kicked out at a Grunt that was too slow moving, and with a last, sweeping glance of the trees concealing the 30 armed men, it turned and walked away behind the others. The Private relaxed, his glance turning to the figure by the tree, and the damaged pod. He saw movement, and an ODST moved out of cover.

The Private assumed everything was clear, and no sooner had he thought this, than Denton gave the order. “Okay, we’re all clear.” The squads, one by one, emerged like silent ghosts towards the pod, converging by it. He selected ten men to keep a lookout at the part of the jungle the aliens had moved through when they left. Bailey examined the pod. The outside of the HEV was scarred black by flames. Or even plasma…

The door lay a few feet away, indicating that the door hadn’t been opened from the inside. It had been torn off by an outside force. Bailey examined the heavy door, taking note of the dents and burn marks. He looked inside the pod next, taking in the smashed screens, the glass coating the inside, the faint blood stain, the scattered ammo magazines and the guns, tore from their restraints. Finally… Bailey turned towards the figure by the tree, and ran over to him. He propped his gun against the tree besides the man. “He’s one of ours! He’s been dead since we landed. Poor bastard couldn’t even defend himself.” Bailey grabbed a small torch that he kept in one of his pouches.

He brought the light across the dead soldier’s visor. It was smashed; shards of glass were stuck in the pale, dead face of the soldier. The thin trails of blood had long dried, his eyepiece had shattered, and also, his eyelid was full of the tiny shards. The torch passed down the man’s body. It reached his neck, showing a large gash across his throat. Blood coated his armour around the area of his neck. There was another hole in his chest. But a burn wound. Two identical sized holes, burned right through his body and out of his back. But then, the familiar sight of plasma burns from energy weapons coated the soldier’s legs and arms. He had suffered before they tore his throat out…

*************

It was sometime later, that the soldiers finally reached the base. The Covenant, in the two weeks they had been here, had massacred the population, and ferried in hundreds of troops and vehicles. It was atop a small cliff, that the 30 men surveyed the base. Lights placed at even intervals all along the temporary structure showed a flurry of activity. Ten Spirit troopships were docked by a large, purple, dome-shaped structure, with manned Shade turrets around its circumference. Jackals and Grunts patrolled the outside of the structure, Jackals with their wrist shields activated, and the Grunts each accompanied by blue-armoured giants. As they surveyed, three Banshees’ zoomed overhead, their screech making The Private flinch. He’d come to hate that noise. Bailey seemed to be completely still, not even moving his head. He finally turned around. “We’re heading back. I’ve seen enough… I expect jungle patrols out there. Keep a wary eye, the rain should keep us under cover, especially since they’re using lights. Kill them if you can without giving us away.” Bailey moved to the front, and the soldiers began a weary march back.

The return was uneventful; the men came back without any enemy contact. However, Spirit searchlights made them scatter at one point. The rain didn’t stop. Rahud was talking to the fleet when they returned. “They’re retreating? You’re sure? Good job Overlord. Does this mean you can lend support for the attack? Nothing big, just some Pelicans and maybe some Shortsword bomb strikes? That’s excellent. Lieutenant Rahud out.” He strode over to Bailey, his helmet tilted up to the sky, as if he could see the victorious space fleet and the debris of the Covenant destroyers floating in the cold of Space. “What’d you see, Bailey? Did you lose anyone?” Bailey saluted the Lieutenant and made his report.

“Everyone made it back. We found one of the two men who died on landing. He’d landed about two miles from here, his pod had broken, hit a tree. He couldn’t open the door, his visor had smashed, and TACMAP smashed, power out in his pod. The Covenant… They… Found him. Tore the door from its hinges, tortured him first.”

“That’s enough, Sergeant. Now, the report?” Bailey seemed to stiffen, the grip on his Assault Rifle tightened.

“Covenant has set up their base pretty good. They have regular patrols, ten Spirit dropships, about 20 Banshee’s, Shade turrets, hell of a lot of Jackals and Grunts. A few Elites are there, too. Didn’t see any Ghosts or Wraiths, which should make the job a lot easier. I saw some excellent spots to dot some snipers around. We’ll need them for the shades and to lay down cover fire. We can use the rockets against the Banshee’s, and maybe even the Spirits if they get desperate enough. We’ve got the element of surprise, Sir. Let’s not waste it.”

Rahud looked around at the men. They were all ready, had been ready since they dropped. Blank, helmeted faces glared back at him. He pulled back the bolt on his MA5B. “We’re moving out! Helljumpers! Assemble on me!”

****************


The Private sat in the bush. He couldn’t see them, but he knew the others were behind him. The cliff he had been led to earlier was now the position of a sniper, camouflaged in the greenery, his lethal weapon rested on the ground, four other snipers were scattered at vantage points throughout… So far, so good. There were three rocket launchers, with two rockets for each. This meant only 6 rockets, against roughly 30 enemy vehicles, a fact that greatly troubled The Private. But Rahud had been assured of support. A couple of Pelican’s were further back in the jungle, ready to come up and give support when called. They had stolen in during the heavy rain, remaining undetected. Two Shortsword bombers were waiting also, on standby.

The Covenant base was a lot cleared without the rain in the way of visibility. The Private had seen these mobile field bases before on Harvest, and just like on Harvest, they would destroy this one too. The Private counted down in his head. “4… 3… 2… 1…” The sniper’s fired in unison. Five bullet trails criss-crossed across the sky, there were alien yells of surprise, five shade gunners fell out of their turrets, dead. Then three men stood. They hefted the rocket launchers, aiming them at the stationary banshee’s. The rockets impacted on the purple aircraft, shattering them to pieces, and catching unlucky bystanders in the blast. Red and orange flame tinged with blue plasma lit up the base. The rocket launchers were discarded, and rifles replaced them. The radio crackled. “You know your objectives! Get to it, Marines!”

The Private rushed from his cover. He lifted his DMR, and fired off two rounds at a panicking Grunt, its blood spraying from the wounds as it toppled. Bullets sprayed from the charging ODST’s, cutting down the Grunts and Jackals that got in the way. They began to withdraw, firing wildly at the humans. The snipers fired at will, shooting down any of the Elites that attempted to dive into a Banshee, after a while they stopped trying. The men had an objective, secure the outer fringes of the base, push them back inside the base, and bomb it to Hell. The Private dived against a wall as a plasma grenade shot over the section of building, landing softly in the midst of his squad. It detonated loudly, a blue fire. There was a strange sound, a whirring. A steady hum filled his ears, and a Spirit flew right over The Private, its turret swiveling crazily between targets.

“Spirit! Take cover!” The turret opened fire. Jets of red hot plasma laced the ground, aiming for the men. They scattered, its rounds burning ineffectually into the dirt. The Private rounded a corner to escape the fiery wrath of the pilot, and bumped into an Elite. It started back, a startled grunt escaped it. Its hesitation lasted barely a second. Its hand struck out lightning fast, gripping The Private by the throat. It lifted him off his feet, its alien face stared into his visor, and it slammed him against the wall. The blue-armoured monster kicked him in the chest as he fell, crushing him against the wall. It didn’t seem to have a weapon, but that soon proved false, as it grasped a small, metal handle, and red hot lines of energy materialised out of nowhere. It made to thrust the energy sword into The Private’s face, ending him right then and there… But luck was on his side.

The sniper bullet struck through its head in an instant, shards of blue armour flying away from the impact. The bullet slammed its way out of the other side of its head. It lifted off the ground as it died, the sword dying suddenly. The Private retrieved his gun, which he had dropped when the alien threw him. He fired a burst into the head of the alien in fury. He gave a silent thanks to the sniper who had saved him, and continued to run. He turned around and saw the Spirit lacing the areas where the snipers were hiding. Suddenly, a salvo of missiles struck the ship. Explosions enveloped it, embracing the ship, tearing it apart. Plasma exploded through the cockpit, and the Spirit began to drag down towards the ground, spinning from the explosions. The Private watched as it rumbled overhead, crashing out of sight. He didn’t see, but he heard it.

The ODST’s finished off any Covenant still not inside the base. A squad of Elites had taken cover behind the debris of the destroyed Spirit, and the Pelican that had blown it up hosed them down with its turret, they never stood a chance. Their wild shots zooming up past the ship, the heavy slugs pounding the Elites into the dirt. The ODST’s came around in their squads, except The Private was lost to his squad, they had gone to destroy the Banshee’s and the Spirit’s. He had retreated to a small boulder that stood in front of one of the building entrances. He rested his gun on the top of it, kneeling down so that his head was just over the boulder; he aimed at the energy shield acting as a door. A gold armoured Elite stared at him through the DMR’s scope on the other side.

A series of explosions rang through the jungle, as the remaining vehicles were detonated. The ODST’s returned, Corporal Denton waving to The Private when he saw him by the rock. “Private, you’d better get back… The Shortsword’s are coming in!” The Private needed no more encouragement. He gave a last look at the gold Elite as it breathed heavily, Jackals and Grunts fidgeting behind him nervously. The ODST’s raced back towards the treeline, leaving the bodies of the dead Covenant behind. Remarkably, no ODST’s had been killed, just minor wounds.

The Private crouched down and steadied himself. The Pelicans flew back to where they came from, and the men heard the steady rumble of the bombers approaching. The noise became deafening, and the bombers shot past the base. Then, all Hell broke on the base. Dozens of heavy bombs detonated on the base, blossoming explosions covered every inch of the purple building. Bodies were flung into the trees around the base, charred and dismembered. The Private felt himself flung back by the blast, as many others were too. Cheering erupted suddenly, The Private coughed inside his helmet as he struggled up from the ground. He joined in. Adding his voice to the chorus of men, ecstatic at the victory.

The purple structure lay in ruins; charred bodies lay under the blackened, purple rubble. The ODST’s picked their way through, ensuring nothing survived. It seemed unlikely. There was a piercing scream. The Private turned in the direction of the sound, and saw the gold armoured Elite, a plasma rifle in one hand, an energy sword in the other. There was a body impaled on the energy sword, he struggled feebly to free himself. The Elite scraped him off with its boot, and roared at the surprised humans. Its mandibles split open, and a throaty roar split the silence. The Private fired the first shots, startling the others into action. The bullets pinged harmlessly off its energy shield, and the Elite fired a burst of plasma from its weapon. The Private rolled away, the plasma striking the ground.

The Elite ran nimbly away from the ODST’s, bullets hitting its shielding. It dived behind a ruined Spirit; the ODST’s closed in around it. The wounded soldier was carried away by the group’s only medic. Rahud appeared at the head of the advancing men. “Goddamnit, what the hell are you doing? Split up! If you all run in that thing it’ll kill a lot of you before it goes down! Someone go the other side of the Spirit!” The Private and his squad met up near the cockpit of the Spirit. Denton put his head around the corner of the ship; the Elite leveled its plasma rifle at his head and fired a burst. Denton retreated before they could hit him.

“Squad, that thing will kill you if you go in.” Denton saw a group of other ODST’s further to the right; they dropped to a crouch, and opened fire on the Elite on its flank. It fired its plasma rifle, but they were too far away for the rounds to be any accurate. It began to sprint away from the Spirit. The radio crackled, “The Elite is running! Kill him!” The ODST’s burst from cover, rounds slamming into the Elite. It focused on another destroyed Spirit… But it never made it. A bullet penetrated the shield at long last, entering its neck. It dropped suddenly, the shock of the impact stunning it. More rounds followed. Jets of purple blood shot into the air, as more and more bullets struck the alien.

The ODST’s ran over to the alien, the radio crackled once more. “Take that thing alive! It must have an important rank, never seen one in gold, before,” the Elite saw the hordes of humans closing in, their guns pointed at it. Thin streams of blood oozed out of multiple holes in its back, arms and legs. It raised a shaking hand to its jaw. It squeezed the trigger. The bolt fired, but never hit its target. A gun butt slammed down on its back at the last second, the shot going wide, and the Elite collapsing. The men gathered around the unconscious alien. Rahud appeared and rolled it on its back. “Get that thing to a medic. See what they can do for it. This one looks important.”

The Elite was under constant guard. But it was too weak to do anything. The bleeding had been stopped, but its wounds still pained it. Strained words tumbled from its mouth, weak and not as threatening as they should have been. The Private almost felt sorry for the monster. Until he remembered Harvest. Unfortunately, despite a victory on the ground with very minimal casualties, the Covenant returned in Space. Two UNSC ships were destroyed. The ODST’s and their captive were taken back to their ship, Overlord, and after so much spilled blood, Hat Yai was searched by the Covenant, and then glassed a week later.

On board the severely damaged ship, The Private confined himself to the barracks, sleeping. Emerging only to eat and help with repairs when needed. He lay in his bed, among the other surviving ODST’s. Hanson sat on the end of the bed. “Hey, Patrick? You okay?” Patrick sighed in annoyance; he just wanted to be left alone.

“No, I’m not okay! What the hell happened?! If the fleet did their job, we’d have beaten them! Millions died on that planet, and we let them have it! What was the point in the operation? It was a balls up!” Patrick swung his legs over the side of the bed, his eyes staring hard at the metal floor. Hanson shook his head.

“No,” Hanson turned to look at Patrick. “No, it wasn’t. We got a valuable prisoner. Probably a commander… A general. Do you know what that means? What it could do for the war effort? For morale? We may have lost a planet… But it’s just one of many. We couldn’t have stopped them. You saw how many ships the freaks brought back with them.”

“We have to do something that makes a difference. We win on the ground, but the ground isn’t where it matters. We lose in Space, and Space is where it matters. In Space, we can’t do anything to help. At least on the ground, we have a fighting chance. In Space, we sit, huddled in the dark. Waiting for us to either escape after taking damage, or die.” Patrick didn’t wait for a reply. He left the room, to the stares of his comrades. The door slid shut on his exit. Hanson rose slowly.

“It’ll change soon… It has to…”
avatar
Offensive Bias
Minion

Male Number of posts : 416
Registration date : 2009-11-15

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Tides of War - Operation Alpha

Post by Ruski on Mon Sep 27, 2010 4:42 pm

Damn good.
avatar
Ruski
Minion

Male Number of posts : 1218
Age : 24
Location : Canton, Ohio
Registration date : 2009-07-02

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum