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The Forlorn Hope


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#1 Kirok

 

Kirok

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Posted 07 October 2012 - 01:20 AM

Episode 1

The two space-suited figures floated motionless in space. In front of them hung a panorama of death.

The last of three Terran Empire cruisers stood facing them, twenty kilometres away, it's two brethren now disabled hulks lying light years away, locked in death with the rebel spaceship which they had been chasing for months. The only movement was a shuttle rapidly disappearing towards it, drawn by the scintillating rays of the tractor beam that played over it.

The larger of the two floating figures swiveled it's head towards the other and grunted in a gruff, male voice, "You bought us ten minutes at most. It won't even reach them before they realise we aren't on board."

The other didn't even move but stared fixedly at the peanut-sized light that blinked on the technical readout on its wrist. "She doesn't need to reach them, she just needs to get inside their shields..." As if in answer, the light stopped blinking to become a steady glow. The coms channel of the smaller of the two gave out an unmistakably girlish laugh as she punched a stud next to the light.

"Say goodbye to the Tardis!"

Their faceplates turned instantly silver as their suits sensed the brilliant light of the explosion in front of them and polarised to save their eyesight. The plasma explosion from the overloaded warp core of the long-range shuttle looked for a second like a tiny sun, contained as it was within the shields of the cruiser, until they failed entirely and jets of superheated plasma shot outwards in random directions.

"Stupid name for a ship anyway," was the only reply from the larger as he quickly manipulated the controls of his suit's maneuvering jets to make him turn away from the explosion.

"Oh, come on! I saved our skin - AGAIN! What's it going to take to get you to say thank you?" She too started to yaw her suit away from the settling explosion but she didn't get far before she bumped into her companion.

"Hunh?"

"Get us out of this one."

Space is not quite as empty as one would think. It has its own wildlife that usually consists of microbes that live on energy but even in space the universal rule applies, big fish eat little fish, and a very big fish had been attracted to the recent explosion! Roughly similar to an ancient Earth whale, the spaceborn organism was heading straight towards them, its hundred metre wide maw gaping like a hole in an asteroid full of writhing snakes!

Swearing steadily in a variety of languages, the woman reached over her shoulder to grab the phaser rifle from it's magnetic latches on her back. Firing a random shot into the centre of the creatures maw she didn't even bother looking towards her male companion.

"I'm all out of ideas! It's your turn!"

This time it was the man's turn to laugh, albeit rather bitterly, as he kicked his suit's main thrusters into life, locked his magnetic boots into the small of her back and set them tumbling straight towards the certain death before them.

"Heghlu'meH QaQ jajvam!"

His laughter took on a manic tone as he reached over his own shoulders and grabbed a metre-long bat'leth.

Latest releases !!! ~ March 11 - HFO Personal Logs 2 ~ March 19 - PD Smith-Tales From the Fleet 01 : Species 571 ~ March 11 - Bruffy-NovaTrek06 : A Tale Of Two Captains, Pt 2 ~
Kirok of L'Stok - Director of Media ..... "I love deadlines! I love the whooshing sound they make as they fly by!" - Douglas Adams

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#2 Kirok

 

Kirok

    Publishing and Media Director, Global Moderator

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Posted 17 October 2012 - 02:20 AM

The Forlorn Hope Episode 2

The half-naked nomad looked up from the bloody mess that represented his kill for the day. Something was wrong! Sweeping his surroundings, he searched for the danger that he sensed but could find nothing out of the ordinary. The twin moons of his home planet had just broken over the horizon, as twilight crept over the foothills behind him and onto the forest canopy. Perhaps it was the stillness for it was so terribly still, an uncanny stillness which seemed to spread as the last breath of the day's desultory wind died. Even the hyperactive quadrapeds who swarmed through the alien trees stopped and huddled together, suspicious, nervous, fearful, expectant...

... As a third, tiny moon rose from the horizon to edge towards the two larger satellites.

With each second it moved faster, growing brighter. The nomad straightened, his brows knitting into a frown, as the speck became a dot, the dot a spark that threw off tiny streamers of fire. Once, as a child, he had seen a meteor land in the mountains but that had streamed a tail behind whilst this... was heading directly towards him!

With a noise like a thousand screaming demons, the fireball blasted overhead at tree height, the compression wave proceeding it throwing the barbarian to the ground where he lay, half covered by the large, many-legged forager he had slain earlier that day. Within seconds, the blast wave was dwarfed by a hurricane that covered him in a mountain of tree trunks and wood chips.

The irony of the fact that his life had been saved by the same dangerous bull he had deprived of life that morning was lost on him. He had survived, that was enough for him.

Gradually the violence of the storm above him abated to the level of the Winter storms of the far North and the shifting mass of broken forestry stopped trying to shred him. Bracing his legs beneath him and heaving his massive shoulders upwards he strained, back muscles creaking, until, in a shower of greenery and animal parts, he rose from the undergrowth like some primitive, arboreal spirit!

He stood for a moment, stooped and swaying, every muscle and ligament in his body screaming in pain. He had survived, he realised with surprise. In an uncommon gesture of defiance against the fates, he straightened his back, threw back his head and roared his hunting cry into the stormy blackness about him!

His senses clearing, the details of his surroundings sank into him. The soup of dirt, greenery and smoke was being pushed away from him by a steady wind that blew from his back. Turning, he squinted into a world gone mad.

The giant trees of the mighty forest that had been his home since birth were nowhere to be seen!

They had been flattened to the ground, to lie like heaped firewood in a kilometre-wide channel that stretched for as far as the eye could see and there, right on the edge of visibility pulsed an unearthly glow.

His primitive hunting tools were somewhere buried beneath the shifting, broken forest he stood on. Safety, even survival, lay with the settled tribes of the sea, a hundred kilometers at his back. Looking around he surveyed the devastation. A destructive power greater than any natural force he had ever heard of had torn into his forest. Had destroyed his home.

Without hesitation he turned towards the glow and started crawling through the Hell before him.

Latest releases !!! ~ March 11 - HFO Personal Logs 2 ~ March 19 - PD Smith-Tales From the Fleet 01 : Species 571 ~ March 11 - Bruffy-NovaTrek06 : A Tale Of Two Captains, Pt 2 ~
Kirok of L'Stok - Director of Media ..... "I love deadlines! I love the whooshing sound they make as they fly by!" - Douglas Adams

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