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  • (IC) Of Promises Made and Broken
    • Heather Niall
      Posted May 6, 2002 7:59 PM

      Above, in the skies above southern Texas, over what was called the Hill Country, stood a force of some fifty mobile suits. The air was alive with a mixture of anticipation and dread. Anticipation for the upcoming battle, at the sight of so many Intruder mechs' breaking through the first and second lines of defense. Dread at that same sight, since most likely some of them wouldn’t live to see the sun set on the end of this day.

      A dark blue Dancer-S with white trim stood at the front, hovering on its thrusters, Jensen rifle held at a ready position, I-field up and running. It was a rule, in one of the books used by both the UAAF forces and the MI that if there weren’t an officer around to lead, then the next available substitute would be used. So the task fell to her, as the agent in the area, to assume her rarely used authority and assume the position of commander of the forces that Allard had sent back here, as one of the last lines of defense.

      Truly, she wished she were a hundred miles south, near where the major battle was occurring, but Allard had decreed that which was true: the Dancer-S wasn’t made for extended battles. So she’d been sent back to the rear, in front of the ships readied to take in survivors, if any, and had medical staff’s on the standby. To take care of any mechs that got past the first two waves.

      And here they came.

      Heather watched the panoramic screens as the specks on the horizon slowly grew larger, each taking on their respective form, the computer tagging each one. Adon’s, Helios’, and Shrike’s, among the others. A widespread variety, each intent on their victory.

      And victory they would achieve. There was to be no quarter given, and none taken in return. This battle was to be bloody, but final. There would be no 'second chance.' The first of the front line suits crash against the inferior human defenders.

      She made her choice, deciding on one that seemed to be a leader, a Helios with distinctive markings, much like the one Dias had piloted at one time. Raising the rifle, she fired upon the suit, the other arm bringing up the shield to ward off any fire.

      The Helios seems to mock her, taking the incoming fire and brushing them off, like the bullets were mere flies. Like a blazing inferno, the suit charges into the Dancer-S, its Burst Field rapidly melting away shield armor, and it's Zorin blade posed to strike.

      Falling backwards towards the pine forest below, thrusters engaged at the last moment, veering off and upwards, the rifle stowed away onto its back holder, one rapier brought out for use, clashing with the Zorin blade. Inside the cockpit, Heather grimaced, being jostled around.

      Disengaging the Burst Field, as it was only good for a short amount of time anyway, the second Zorin blade comes online as well. And, by the look of the incoming Helios, the pilot is well skilled in handling both blades simultaneously. Striking first with the left blade, at the torso, the second follows through with a slash aimed at the sensor head, to scar the 'eyes'.

      “Damnit!” Using the beam shield to ward off one blade, she brought the rapier coming up to engage the other one again, wincing at the blows. She only prayed that the shield would hold out and that she could do some damage. She feinted low, then struck high, near the cockpit. Around her, others met their fates, both human and Intruder, mechs falling towards the ground in graceful plummets of twisted metal and shattered remains.

      Pivoting, with slight thruster help, the right blade easily sweeps the rapier aside, quickly raising both above it's own head in an 'X' formation. Gaining up its strength, it sweeps the blades down in a viscous arc, aimed to slice the suit into quarters.

      Heather brought the shield up again, rapier also blocking, crouching then lashing out with the right leg, catching the Helios in the middle, sending it backwards, first by her actions, and then of its own accord. A cannon replaces a Zorin blade, as the incoming shells hurtle at Heather with profound speed.

      The Dancer-S ducked and rolled out of the way, spinning about on verniers, the armor and I-field on the back taking the last few shells, jolting her forward, one screen popping up to display the damage done to the systems. She completed the roll, the shoulder mounted Vulcan’s firing rapidly at the suit.

      The shots were insignificant, as it had reactivated it's Burst Field while the Dancer had been doing its evasive maneuvers, following it carefully, and fast. Seemingly absorbing the fire, taking little damage, it tries to barrel into the Dancer, and utterly shoulder-ram it into the forest below.

      She engaged thrusters again, this time to the maximum level, not wanting to be part of the landscape just yet, if ever. ”I...won't let you....” The Dancer-S grappled with the Helios, using its momentum to send it towards the ground in her place.

      Even as it falls, doubtlessly trying to correct it's descent, it fires off shot after shot from it's cannon. However, as it disappears into the foliage, a sickening 'crack' is heard. Heather brought the Dancer-S over towards the site, looking down for a brief moment, making sure that the Helios was out of commission. A brief explosion is heard, and then seen, as the pine groves erupt into flame. Nodding to herself, the first one taken care of, then turns her attention to the others, picking out her targets.

      A moment passed, then the radar and sensors screamed warnings as from the fiery blaze comes the ever-determined Helios, holding the sensor head of a fellow Dancer in it's only surviving hand. She turned, startled, bringing up the wavering beam shield at the last moment, firing off rounds from the Jensen. “ Holy-!”

      Over the communications link comes a watery, but nonetheless malicious laugh, full of confidence and hatred. Like a baseball, it hurls the now defunct head at Heather, looping away from her reactive fire.

      Verniers fire, veering away from the MS head, letting it hurtle past. “Damnit...” She watched the Helios, listening over the communication channel as others won and lost their battles. Coming back around from a full loop, it squares off with Heather, the remaining Zorin blade coming online. A duel, perhaps?

      Heather paused a moment, then stows the rifle again to its rack on the back of the suit, activating both rapier blades, letting the beam shield power down, yet ready to bring it back up at a moments notice. “Okay...I took out Dias...I can take you on.”

      A raspy voice, still watery, came over the channel. “ No you cannot.” As if on cue, two Hellion whips latch onto her suit's arms at the wrist, easily prohibiting movement. There is no honor in war.

      “Damn you...”She stared down at the trap for a brief moment, then activated systems. The Dancer's hands pivoted, blades circling around, starting to cut through the Hellion whips.

      Again, that voice over the communications channel…”Damn me all you wish...we'll meet what you humans call "Hell." So saying, the Helios darted in at Heather, blade aimed straight for the center of the cockpit.

      Feeding more power to the rapiers, desperately watching, as the Helios grew larger on the screens with one eye, the other one trained on the progress of the cutting. Finally, at the last moment, the whips broke free...>

      The blade struck home, starting to cleave into the cockpit armor. However, the now-free rapier has its own plans, as the suit is nearly split in two; the Blast Field had badly damaged the suit's structural integrity. In a last ditch effort, she plunged both rapiers into the waist of the Helios, seeking and finding the containment bottle that powered the suit. Energy rippled out, sending the battered remains of the Dancer-S towards the ground, splintering trees and kicking up a dust cloud before settling around the silent machine.

      Inside the cockpit, warning sirens blared the pilot awake, wincing at the cacophony. Reaching up, she shut down systems then triggered the hatch, letting warm air flood in. Crawling out painfully, feeling each bruise, each cut, she slid down the side of the suit, she came to a rest near one of the trees that had broken her fall. Far above her, fights continued, explosions far-off and muffled by distance.

      “I made it…” she muttered, coughing. Bringing up her left arm, she looked at the special wrist guard that was on her flight suit, the hard plastic covering the small vials beneath. Activating the small computer on the arm below it, she selected one of icons, feeling the tiny prick, then the cold sensation as painkillers were administered. The effect was instantaneous and welcomed as her aches faded away into darkness.

      Agent Heather Niall, of the MI, rested against the trees near the remains of her suit, a small smile on her face, as the sun slowly lowered towards the horizon.
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