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Squad 37, the Forgotten Squad
Zero floated down the long hallway of his shuttle. He had his rifle slung over his shoulder and in his left hand he held an ice cream sandwich. He was on the flagship Exia of NASA’s international space colonization movement. Zero was only fourteen, but he had a strong will and composure. He always kept a serious outlook and spoke rarely. His actions were what made him renowned; which is why NASA chose him to join the American team. There were seven ships in all; they were medium sized shuttles that could support seven members. Even though Zero was the lead rifleman aboard the squad, he had taken to helping the Mechanic Johnston. The fleet slowly neared a large planetary mass unknown to the world’s scientists up until a couple of months ago. The object was likely to service life and due to the deterioration of earth the squads were ordered to set a foot hold on the new planet known as, the new earth. Zero looked out the window into space and at earth; his facial expression never changed. “Three minutes until we reach the destination.” came Sergeant Smith’s voice over the intercom. So we’re almost there, mankind’s great extension into space, Zero thought. Zero hastily moved towards his room to get his helmet.
In an instant a violent amount of shaking occurred throwing Zero into the wall. “Turbulence?!” Zero yelled at the empty hallway as he looked out the window; he saw smoke. His eyes grew wide, “what the h*ll.” He cursed as he pushed himself off the wall with his legs then shot into his room. He grabbed his helmet. As he put it on he got an immediate emergency transmission; Zero touched a button on the side of his helmet. “What is it Johnston?” Zero asked into his helm.
“The engines took a direct hit and I’ve got a chunk of metal torn through me.” Johnston said as he wheezed between words.
“I’ll be right there.” Zero said calmly as he carried his rifle at the ready.
“Zero. Keep a check in transmission on your helmet, record all of this!” Came the Sergeants voice through Zeros helmet.
“Roger.” Zero replied as he pushed another button on his helmet. “Recording now.” Said a robotic voice inside the helmet. Zero shot down the hallway and into the engine room.
“Get out of here Zero! It’s gonna blow!” Johnston yelled into Zero’s helmet. Zero ignored his team mate’s plea as he shot towards the mechanic. Zero saw Johnston. The top of his chest to his head was visible; the rest of his body was buried in the rubble. His helmet visor was stained red with blood and there was no possible way for Zero to see into it. He looked over at the three engines; the one by Johnston was overheated and vibrating rapidly. Zero looked at Johnston then clenched his teeth, without warning the engine exploded sending Zero flying out the room and leaving a distinct smell of solar particles in the space around him. Zero regained himself then looked back at the engine room. There was a huge hole where it once was; Johnston’s body was nowhere in sight. “Sergeant.” Zero said.
“What is it Zero?!” Smith shouted back over the comm link; gunfire was in the background.
“Johnston’s dead and we’ve taken a considerable amount of damage to our engines.”
“God d*mmit! Well how bad is the damage?” Smith asked.
“Our left engine’s blown to h*ll.” Zero replied.
“Alright well get your ass up to the helm, Woodock is in the turret and he needs your help spotting the attackers.” Smith ordered.
“Roger, I’m on my way.” Zero responded as he shot down the hallway. “Control, come in control this is Exia, out.” Zero called out into his comm link.
“This is control; state your current situation, Exia.” Replied a voice across the link.
“Our left engine is blown and we are currently in combat; send assistance immediately.” Zero shouted as the shuttle began to shake again; Zero stopped then grabbed onto a handle by a window.
“This is control; we’re sorry Exia, but we have to pull the other ships back to earth now.” the voice said.
“What the h*ll!?” Zero yelled as static filled the comm link. Zero gazed out the window as he watched the other shuttles slowly making their way back towards earth. “S***.” Zero cursed as he sped down the hallway.
Zero stopped near the front of the ship, four of his teammates ducked under the large control panels; the front window was blasted open. Zero barrel rolled to his left ducking into cover as plasma looking shots hit around his last position. Large caliber bullet shells fell into Zero’s lap. He looked up and saw Woodock blasting away with the Quad fifty-cal. “Eat it you alien b****rds!” He shouted as his long hair flipped about.
“Crazy a**.” Zero said to him.
“Why thank you kid.” Woodock replied never letting his gaze slip from the enemy.
“So just what in the h*ll is attacking us?” Zero asked.
“We’ve got no f***ing idea.” Smith said to him. The four at the front popped up now and then as they sprayed at the aggressor’s; to no avail.
“So what, do they look like E.T. or some s***?” Zero asked in a serious voice. He heard the laughter of his squad members in his helmet.
“Nah, they where stones now they’re just robotic freaks.” Woodock replied. “WOOOOOO!” he screamed as he lit up the aliens. Zero rolled out of cover and onto his stomach; he peeked into his scope as he watched Woodock’s targets get their robotic like limbs shot to bits.
“Nice hit Woody.” Zero said.
“It’s all in the wrists kid!” Woodock replied as he began to whoop some more. Zero shot one of the things straight through the face; it staggered back then continued firing.
“Looks like they don’t have brains.” Zero said as he adjusted his aim towards a circular object in the middle of the thing’s chest; it glowed a bright blue. Zero sent a bullet screaming through the object; the lights in the things’ eyes died out as it fell to the ground. “Aim for the middle of the chest!” Zero shouted after making his discovery. “Roger.” Everyone replied in unison.
“S***!” Woodock cursed. Zero looked up and saw one of the things on top of the glass surrounding the turret; Woodock backed from the turret handles as he pulled up his pistol and fired through the glass, he shifted around and accidentally kicked his helmet down towards Zero. Zero reached for it; as he did several plasma rounds shot it to bits.
“F***.” Zero cursed as he pulled his hand back the stared towards the front searching for the robot that fired at the helmet. Zero looked up at Woodock. His eyes widened as he drew up his rifle and began to fire at the things massing on top of the glass.
“Forget it; I can’t hold!” Woodock yelled. Zero stood up.
“Come on get out!” He yelled to his comrade. Woodock began to step downwards; before he completed his dissent a robotic arm sliced through his abdomen. Woodock’s head fell backwards then slung forwards; he coughed blood down onto Zero. It splattered across his visor. “S***!” Zero exclaimed as he hurridly wiped off the majority of the blood then began to fire at the things.
“I said forget it!” Woodock yelled.
“Wait!” Zero yelled as he looked up at his friend. Woodock grinned; blood filled on the side of his mouth.
“So long kid,” he said. Zero tried to climb up towards him. Woodock Spartan kicked him down as he slammed the door shut and turned around. Zero stared upwards with wide eyes as he heard an explosion.
“What the h*ll happened?!” Smith yelled back towards Zero.
“They got Woodock.” Zero replied as he slammed himself into cover next to his Sergeant. Smith clenched his teeth.
“Do you think we can use pieces from those cores to power the ship?” Noel asked.
“It’s worth givin’ a try.” Wilson replied as he, Smith and Noel stood up then sprinted towards the nearest dead alien.
“Wait!” Zero yelled.
“Cover us Zero!” Smith commanded as he took to a knee then began to fire. White dust floated into the air from each footstep the men made. Zero picked off targets as the three hastily began to scavenge for one of the cores. Smith looked down to reload; as he did an alien approached him at blinding speed.
“Sergeant!” Zero yelled as he got up then sprinted towards Smith. The alien sunk its arm through Smith’s chest. Zero let up the thing then bashed it to the ground with the butt of his rifle. He then slid the arm out of his Sergeant. Smith slowly stood up.
“Get back to Earth.” He said giving his last command as he shoved Zero back towards the ship; Smith then turned as he took off his helmet. He walked forwards with his rifle drawn up; firing as he went as he walked off towards the horizon. His figure vanished. Zero popped himself on his elbows and stared forwards looking for his Sergeant.
“Let’s go Zero!” Noel yelled at him. Zero stood up then ran towards Wilson and Noel. An alien shot towards Wilson and bashed his skull in; Wilson died instantly. Zero didn’t look back as he and Noel sprinted back towards the ship. Before they could get to cover Noel was struck by a plasma round in his back. He flew forwards into the first hallway. Zero lunged towards him then slapped a button on the wall as he passed it. Emergency doors fell from the roof onto the ground in front of them.
“Zero.” Noel said as he rested his back onto the wall and sank down so that he was sitting.
“What is it?” Zero asked, his eyes fixed on the wall; the smell of solar particles was around him. But the engines are further down; the particles couldn’t have floated down this quickly, Zero thought.
“Tell my family I died a hero.” Noel said with serious eyes.
“Tell them that yourself when we-”
“Don’t f*** with me!” Noel shouted as he grabbed Zero then held him up to his helmet visor. “Take the core fighter.” Noel said as he shoved Zero away. “If they get through the wall I’ll fight off as many as I can.” Noel said. Zero stood there waiting for a while. “Go, get out of her Zero!” Noel shouted. Zero looked towards the ground as he forced back a tear.
“I won’t let your sacrifice’s go to waste!” He shouted as he turned then ran towards the rear of the ship. He slapped the emergency buttons on the walls as he passed them closing doors in the path of the aliens. Zero stopped by a small hatch; he opened it then put his hands onto a handle on the top of the opening as he threw himself in legs first. He sat in a cramped cockpit; he began to hastily flip switches. His hands hovered over the launch switch; he then quickly shoved it forwards as he flew out of the Exia and into space. Zero could smell solar particles; he looked to his left as he saw the distinctive green color of solar particles trailing off into the distance. He looked down at the ground to see the aliens completely annihilated. “No way.” Zero said. He looked back towards the beam of light. “Was that what I think it was?” Zero asked himself as he lost his breath. His ship plummeted down towards earth.
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Dream as if you will live forever, live as if you will die tomorrow.