Well, it's Monday, so I guess that means I should update. This is the first part of a story that popped into my head at 3AM Saturday night whilst desperately trying to sleep.
The sound of gunfire echoed throughout the canyon. The two humans standing on the eastern ridge exchanged nervous glances. This was it.
John crept up to the edge of the cliff while Aaron crouched behind a rock. This section of the canyon was a good bottleneck, but the cliffs on both sides had long, easily traversable ridges carved into them. Aaron kept his gun ready in case any aliens came charging round the corner.
John carefully set up his sniper rifle. He wouldn’t get many shots so he had to make them count.
Down in the canyon, Sergeant Steve Steel was defending the human base. He was hiding behind the reinforced walls that had previously held the door in place. He was firing towards the aliens, but they kept ducking behind the large rocks strewn around.
“McCraw! Where’s our reinforcements?” He yelled to the woman on the ramparts above him.
“They’ve been delayed sir, some alien ships were taking shots at them. They’ll be an hour at least. We have orders to hold out until then.”
“We won’t last an hour!” Sergeant Steel switched on his helmet radio, “Raynor, you and Rhoads in position yet?”
“We’re ready sir.” Came the crackly reply.
“Middlebrooks, get sniping.”
Back up on the eastern ridge, John aimed his sniper rifle. He tried to pick out the alien leader, or at least someone who seemed to be ordering the others around, and fired. His target slumped to the ground, green blood dripping from his head. The aliens standing next to him both turned and stared at his body.
“We got incoming.” Aaron yelled. Three aliens had come round the edge and had began firing on him. He did his best, but they ducked out of the way before he could hit any of them.
“Gimme a minute.” John replied as he fired his second shot. The second alien slumped to the floor. The third alien on the ground took aim with what the humans had come to recognise as the aliens’ version of a rocket launcher.
“Time to go.” John jumped to his feet as the alien fired. Aaron followed him along the cliff with the aliens hot on his heels. Just as they reached the position where John had sniped from, the alien rocket did so too. The resulting explosion hurled the two leading aliens off of the ridge. The remaining alien stared at the rubble and tried in vain to figure a way across. John and Aaron had already made good their escape.
Down on the ground more aliens flocked around the rocket-armed alien to give him cover. One of them dressed in black armour slapped him upside the head. They spoke in their alien language.
Just a short way away behind a large rock Francis Rhoads and Eric Raynor shrugged to each other, then threw a bunch of grenades into the middle of the alien group. The aliens with the quickest reactions escaped the blast, only to be found out in the open where they quickly succumbed to human fire.
One particularly large alien, dressed in red armour, screamed very loudly in his language. The aliens retreated swiftly.
“They’re retreating! Oh yeah, victory is ours! Everybody report in.” Sergeant Steel called over the radio.
“Middlebrooks and Stacey reporting in, we’re unharmed and returning to base.”
“Raynor reporting, unharmed and returning.”
“Rhoads reporting. I’m injured and…… In deep shit.” Francis dropped his gun and held up his hands. One of the aliens that had surrounded him knocked him unconscious.
“Dammit Raynor, you were supposed to be looking out for each other.” Sergeant Steel berated Eric later.
“He was right behind me. At least, I thought he was.”
“That poor man, who knows what kind of torture those bastards are putting him through.”
At that exact same moment in time, the alien bastards were splashing water over their new prisoner.
“I’m awake Ma, I’m just letting my eyes rest.”
More water splashed over him and Francis fully awoke. He opened his eyes to see an alien face grinning back at him.
“Wow, how much did I drink last night? You are one ugly bitch.”
The alien promptly slapped him. It stepped back to reveal the red-armoured alien standing behind it.
“I’ll have you know that Ozeseph here is considered quite a beauty among our race.” It said.
“You can speak? Sure, you sound like Stephen Hawkings’ robotic lovechild, but rather impressive for a pile of turd.”
“You think to insult me human? I could end your life right here and now.”
“So why don’t you?”
“We have other uses for you. What is your designation?”
“My friends call me Francis, so you can call me anything but that.”
“Oh, I think we’ll be friends enough Francis. Do you know what this is?” The alien held up what looked to Francis to be a stun gun.
“Your TV remote?”
“Amusing. No, this is what we like to call a loyalty chip. Or at least that’s what it translates to in your tongue. All we do is inject it into the back of your primitive human brain, and suddenly you find yourself loyal to our cause.”
“Do you really expect me to believe that you can change someones’ allegiance with a bit of metal? It’s impossible.”
“Oh but it isn’t. We’ve already put them into the brains of some of your higher-ups.”
“Pull the other one; it plays Yankee-Doodle-Dandee.”
“Insolent creature. Think, who was it who ordered the eradication of our colony on Tarcathis? Who was it who ordered your first fleet to chase ours straight into an ambush? Who was it who visited Tarcathis on a peace mission exactly one month before the eradication? Who is it who still makes all of your military decisions?”
“War Minister McCallum?”
“That’s right. He’s been working for us the whole time, and you will too.”
The alien gripped Francis by the hair and dragged his head to the floor, then injected the loyalty chip into the nape of his neck. After Francis stopped struggling it let go.
“You will return to your base after miraculously escaping, and then you will do everything in your power to help us kill every other human here. Then you will once again escape, and continue to aid us.”
“It won’t work.” Francis muttered from his position on the floor.
“What do you mean?”
“It won’t work. The sergeant’s a smart man; he’ll get suspicious if I just escape.”
“Then what do you suggest?”
“You execute me. Send me to the middle of the canyon with two grunts you can afford to lose and make a big announcement to the humans about what will happen to prisoners who fight back. They’ll rescue me and be none the wiser.”
“So it is said, so it shall be.” The alien agreed before strolling away.
The human ship finally landed within the canyon. Two vehicles, a warthog all-terrain vehicle with onboard Gatling gun and a Titan-class main battle tank. The ship then took off again.
The two drivers jumped out of their vehicles and saluted the sergeant.
“Privates Kathy Thom and Antonio Macklin reporting for duty sir.” The female Warthog driver said.
“This it? We wait an hour and lose one of our men and this is it? I requested reinforcements not cheap toys and a pair of wet behind the ears rookies.”
“Sorry sir, but the army’s been having trouble since the War Minister was arrested for treason.”
“Well I’ll have to make do with what I’ve got then, won’t I? You two get your bunks sorted out, then meet in twenty for a strategy meeting.”
“Sir yes sir!” The two rookies chorused. As Antonio entered the base Kathy handed a sealed letter to the sergeant.
“Sir, I’ve been ordered to give this to you. It’s a classified, priority one message, for your eyes only.” After handing it over, she too left to claim her bunk.