The Ofylian War: Tarkan Squad - Cover

The Ofylian War: Tarkan Squad

Copyright© 2011 by Huon

Chapter 1: The Simplest Plans...

The cramped cabin was dimly lit by an unnerving red light, and if you asked one of the twelve men inside, they would all describe it as if the world were tumbling down a hill, nothing was stable inside that cabin, and the men were made all the more nervous by the endless array of sounds, each groan of metal could very well mean that they would fall out of the sky.

Over the ships intercom spoke the pilot, his voice almost overtaken by static, "Five minutes till drop, Lieutenant Camel." At the back of the cabin, by the door to the cockpit, a soldier gets up; the sound of air rushing from a pipe can be heard for a moment before he stands at attention, the sound of air being replaced by a barely perceptible electric hum. On his shoulder gleams a golden metal insignia of a Lieutenant, a single dot within a metal ring. His exoskeleton makes him stand an intimidating seven and a half feet tall. Most of the suits plating is rounded and smooth, with additional sheets of heavy metal on the shoulders, and a long thick piece of flexible titanium across the front. The helmet he wears is like a tribal mask, thin strips of metal over flexible Kevlar covering and a grate alone protects his mouth. But the most striking feature of this armor is the half-dollar sized eyepiece, which glows a bright blue.

The other soldiers sit up straight, and stare intently at the Lieutenant, any other action being done stops immediately, one would think he were king with the respect the soldiers gave. The Lieutenant speaks loudly and forcefully, no word is slurred, "Tarkan, at attention!" Most of the squad rose up and turned to the lieutenant, the electric hum turning into an annoying buzz. There was only one soldier who didn't rise as, while loading a clip, dropped one of the bullets onto the metal grate, and now fumbled for it. Not a task for a soldier in a hundred pound suit.

A few of the men laughed as Cpl. Jake, the squads designated marksmen, whispered, "FNG." "Stow it Corporal." Ordered the lieutenant, giving a glare of dominance to a soldier with the symbol of the Ofylian Army etched into his armor. "Private! Stand at attention or I will not hesitate to personally kick you off this ship at a mile high in the air!" shouted the lieutenant, shaking his head at Pvt. Haverson, the only soldier with armor and emotions unscarred. Haverson stood up, with help from a fellow soldier.

One of the soldiers near the back, with armor nearly as scarred as the Lieutenants, raises his hand and speaks with a voice that sounded like it was being choked by smoke. "Sir, squad is still awaiting orders." "Thank you Sergeant Shegar," said the Lieutenant, "Alright, you know the mission. Knock out their defenses and clear the way for Alpha to get those cells. Then we follow Alpha to the evac point and head back to the capitol. Are we clear?" The soldiers all responded a crisp and quick "Sir, Yessir!" in unison.

The static shrouded voice of the pilot came over the intercom, "Dropping in one." The soldiers in the squad made final ready checks: Safeties were off, armor condition was in the green, and they all knew their orders. The ship clunked onto the broken cement of the street with a loud clang, and it sounded like the ramp of the ship was about to break as it lowered, as soon as it hit the cement, the mission began.

Two blue figures rushed out of the ship and took cover behind a pile of rubble. One of them pulled out a black pair of binoculars, and scanned the area. Clear. They motioned for the rest of the squad to hustle out of the ship. A second ship landed nearby, the soldiers there followed the same procedure. The Lieutenant called over Shegar, the soldier who brought back order to the briefing on the ship, and gave him a nod as the two soldiers huddled over a small device that projected a holographic image of the area, "Let's wait till Alpha gets here and then we'll head two clicks north. That should take us to an abandoned factory, should have a view of the area, and Jake should be able to get a good bead on the compound."

"I'll go inform the men," replied Shegar. The Sergeant walked away with the plans for the soldiers and the Lieutenant looked at the device with a bit of disdain.

"Better not be screwing me," he thought, "Doesn't matter how rare you are, you better be right this time." The machine only buzzed in response as the Lieutenant turned it off and attached it to the side of his armor. The device had once been for tourists to the city, unfortunately the city had deteriorated after a century of disrepair, violence, and natural disasters. He had lost a lot of friends because of this device.

A few minutes of rest were welcome to the soldiers. Pvt. Haverson, the soldier who dropped a bullet in the ship, sat quietly, behind the cold, blue-lit eyes of the armor was a nervous face, and his hands were constantly checking his gear. Cpl. Jake, the marksman of the group was standing with his rifle, scanning the horizon with eyes as blue as the armor, and with as little blinking as the armors constantly blue eyes. Most of the other soldiers sat in their positions, keeping ready incase the New Republic of Ofylia attacked.

"Lt. Camel? Lt. Camel?" yelled a soldier, who was clad in the same blue armor but stumbled along like a newborn infant, approaching the squad. Behind him were several more soldiers clad in blue. Although most of them weren't carrying the long-range M1 rifles, they carried with them the newly developed S3 Submachine Gun and century old shotguns from forgotten armories. They were equipped for close quarter's combat, no use in securing the perimeter.

"Keep it down! Lt's over there!" said the posted sentry, pointing to the Lieutenant who began striding over; the heavy weight of his armor causes broken glass to crack under his feet.

"Specialist Gordon of Alpha? Used to the suit yet?" questioned the Lieutenant, his voice was mocking, but Gordon didn't seem to notice at all.

Gordon nodded, "Yeah, I think we're ready to go in if you are. And these things are way too bulky; couldn't they be lighter and a bit more open?" He wasn't even able to stand up straight in the armor, constantly adjusting his footing. The other members of Alpha squad were more confident, and would keep this man alive.

"Goddamn civilians ... I hate relic-running," thought the Lieutenant. 'Relic Running' was a term invented by infantryman and was essentially used to give a name to the large number of missions where a squad of able soldiers were taken from the frontlines of the war, and forced to guard civilians while they played around in the rubble, looking for technology from the old war. About half the time they found nothing, and half of the time they did, it was worthless crap that would need months of work to make it useable.

The Lieutenant pulled out the map of the old city and showed it to Gordon and Shegar, who had returned to receive orders. He pointed out the factory as a useful position for Alpha to hide in until Tarkan squad, the Lieutenant's squad, was able to secure them a way in. The two squads began moving forward through the ruined city, luckily without incident. When they arrived at the factory, the soldiers took up their positions and the base was scouted out.

Cpl. Jake spoke into the communication system of his armor, "Two guards at the front, the intact bunker has two gun emplacements in it. There's seven, no, nine. Nine guards are on the perimeter. In the center of the base is another gun emplacement, but it's open to the air. Pretty light sir; it's your call on how we do this." The communications channel was cut off with a click as the force of nineteen soldiers inside of the factory waited on the lieutenants' orders.

"Good, keep me posted Jake," replied the Lieutenant, "Alright, here's what we'll do..." The Lieutenant outlined a simple plan. Jake would take out the central gun emplacement and provide covering fire, the rest of Tarkan squad would move in on the bunkers, hit them with a pair of blinders, and then move in to mop up the rest of the enemy soldiers. Once the area was secured, Alpha squad, led by Gordon, would move in and accomplish the mission. It was a simple plan, but the secessionists weren't skilled at military tactics. And they had the element of surprise. It took only a minute for the soldiers to get into position as Jake readied his rifle, aimed at the head of the soldier on the emplacement, and squeezed the trigger.

PEKEW! A clean shot, the headless body of the soldier stumbled to the ground, coating the weapon in a crimson sheet. Every soldier in the compound began running to cover; the bunkers own emplacements began firing wildly into buildings, creating a wall of dust that made the attack that much easier.

"Berkeley, Haverson, Left storefront, go!" ordered the Lieutenant, his mind going over the tactical layout of the area, "Jake, are we clear to move up to the truck?" he asked, eyeing a large truck, which would give optimal cover.

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