Spender: This is far more reckless than you were trained to be.
Black 6 laughed.
Black 6: is it? Are you sure?
Spender: You are going to kill a lot of people down there Black 6. Does that not mean anything to you?
Black 6: I thought that is what you wanted from me!? You trained me to be the perfect killer! Isn't that why I ran the simulations? Isn't that why you pumped drugs into my veins to augment me and change me? Isn't that why you manipulated me and lied to me? This is ALL the culmination of your work Spender...and guess what? You are going to be right here to collect the final results!
Spender: When that ship crashes...you will be killed! Is that what you want?
Black 6: I know I will be killed. It is not what I want...but a lot of things have happened to me that I didn't want. I may be killed in the subsequent crash...but so will all of your cronies on the planet's surface! I may die...but I am going to take a LOT of The Trust with me.
Black 6 began to laugh.
Black 6: I never thought it would end like this...but...all things considered...it is the best I can get.
Spender clenched his fists.
Spender looked at his tactical officer, and gave a swift nod. The tactical officer nodded back, and began to lock weapons on The Hades Eclipse.
Spender: Black 6...I am ordering you to bring that ship about and alter your heading! I am giving you a direct order as your superior officer!
Black 6 laughed.
Black 6: You must have some really giant cajones to say that.
Black 6 paused.
Black 6: I don't take orders from you anymore.
Spender scoffed once again. However, before he could rebuttle, his sensor officer spoke up.
Sensor Officer: Sir...The Hades Eclipse seems to be launching escape pods and Pelicans to the surface of the planet.
Spender let a look of shock shoot across his face.
Spender: Begin targeting those escape pods. Do NOT let them land on the surface of the planet.
Black 6 then interjected.
Black 6: Go ahead and target those escape pods Spender. GO ahead and focus all of you attention on those small, helpless pods. Picking off defenseless people is what you are good at...right?
Black 6 had a very snarky tone.
Black 6: Every second you waste on those pods...is a second I am using to slam this ship right into your base of operations. Take your pick Spender...me...or the escape pods. You can get one...but not both!
Spender was furious. He despised having terms dictated to him like this.
Spender: You song of a bitch...how DARE you give ME an ultimatum.
Black 6 began to laugh.
Black 6: Sorry Spender...I think I am losing this channel.
Black 6 cut the comm line, ending the conversation.
Spender was utterly furious at what just transpired.
Spender: Re-assess targeting parameters. Coordinate fire with the rest of the fleet. Target the Hades Eclipse and destroy that ship!
Tactical officer: Sir...what about the escape pods?
Spender: We will deal with those later. Focus on The Hades Eclipse! We cannot allow that ship to destroy the spire!
The signal was sent to all Trust ships, ordering all ships to target and destroy The Hades Eclipse.
Sensor Officer: Sir...we have a problem...
Spender: What is it?
Sensor Officer: The Hades Eclipse is building up speed. They are moving out of firing range. It seems the ship is caught in the gravity well of the planet, and the ship is using this as a type of slingshot effect to gain constant acceleration. Base on current projections...The Hades Eclipse will be out of firing range in 2 minutes.
Spender: Get all of our ships to begin firing! Use all necessary force to stop that ship! Hit it with EVERYTHING we have!
Spender walked towards the front of the bridge, as he looked out the window at the front of the bridge. His hands were behind his back. Spender was very obviously annoyed and enraged by the current situation. He could not believe that all of the effort he had put into Black 6 managed to backfire so horribly and go so completely wrong. After a moment, Spender turned and walked to the back of the bridge and stood in front of the holotable. He watched as the Trust Fleet moved into firing position. Spender could only hope that he would be able to destroy The Hades Eclipse before it managed to enter the atmosphere.
Sensor Officer: Sir...our ships are reporting difficulty getting a solid lock on that Insurrectionist ship. It seems the interference caused by that ship skimming the atmosphere is causing problems for some of the sensor redundancy checks - in effect - causing false readings which is breaking the weapons lock.
Spender: Order all ships to begin overriding redundancy checks in the scanners...and switch to manual targeting if need be!
Spender looked back at the holotable. He glared at the holographic recreation of The Hades Eclipse.
Spender: You cleaver son of a bitch. We trained you all too well.
Spender sighed. He knew that no matter what...there needed to be planned response to The Insurrectionists on the surface of the planet. Spender knew that his best choice was to get ODST Black Team deployed to the surface.
Spender tapped his earpiece and contacted ODST Black Team via the comm system.
Spender: Black Team...this is Spender. I want you five to report to hanger bay 3 and meet me there, on the double! You are being deployed to the surface.
UNSC Phoenix Class - The Hades Eclipse - Main Bridge - Currently in the APX-449 Star System - Center of Trust Activity known as The Apex - 1640 Hours - July 30th 2515
As The Hades Eclipse began to veer downwards, into the atmosphere of the planet, on a direct course for the CIC, Black 6 knew that he did not have much time to evacuate from the ship. He had cut his escape very close in order to ensure that Vixen and her Insurrectionists had escaped the ship. Black 6 had given as much time as he could have, and there was nothing more he could do. With this realization, Black 6 got up from his seat and ran off the bridge.
Black 6: I have to get off this ship. I don't have much time!
As Black 6 ran through the corridors, dodging burning wreckage and collapsed bulkheads, he knew that his only chance to escape was to make it to hanger bay 2 where there was still a single Pelican remaining.
With each second that passed, the ship began to get hotter and hotter and it began to shake more and more as it began its shallow descent trajectory into the atmosphere. The ship was literally falling apart at the seams as chunks of the hull plating were ripped from the superstructure. Larger and larger sections of the outer decks were becoming fully exposed as the ship began to disintegrate under all the stress. Thankfully, Black 6 was able to move through the inner decks and avoid any serious danger.
As Black 6 approached hanger bay 2, he began to notice the walls around him beginning to collapse. Black 6 could feel the floor below his feet start to buckle as he moved. When Black 6 reached the door to the hanger bay, he saw that the corridor in front of the door had all but totally collapsed. By this time the ship began to violently shake as it got further and further into the atmosphere. Black 6 had no choice but to crawl through the debris and fallen bulkheads in order to reach the door. Black 6 quickly crawled through the debris and the bulkheads, not wanting to get trapped underneath in the event of a collapse.
Black 6 eventually made it through to the hanger bay, having only seconds to spare before all of the debris and bulkheads collapsed, making any kind of backtracking impossible. As Black 6 got to his feet, he saw the final Pelican, alone and unattended, at the far side of the hanger bay. However, as Black 6 began to move towards the Pelican, the artificial gravity systems began to fail. Black 6 found himself sliding to one side, as it became obvious that the ship was no longer level, and without the artificial gravity systems to keep things level, getting to the Pelican would prove to be very difficult. However Black 6 remembered that his BDU had been rated for EVA, and that his boots were equipped with magnetic locks. Black 6 used his HUD to activate the maglocks in his boots, which game him the traction he needed to get to the Pelican.
Despite the help of the maglocks, Black 6 knew that the ship was tipping more and more, as he had to dodge the occasional sliding box. Black 6 could see that the Pelican had its docking clamps engaged, so he did not worry about the Pelican sliding out of place, but he was concerned about actually having to momentarily disengage the docking clamps to actually fly out of the hanger.
As Black 6 got close to the Pelican, he reached out and grabbed a seatbelt that was hanging out the back due to the angle. As Black 6 grabbed it, he began to pull himself upwards into the Pelican. Black 6 continue to grab whatever he could get his hands on in order to give himself more leverage and traction as he moved towards the cockpit.
Black 6 eventually managed to climb up to the cockpit and reach the pilot's seat. As Black 6 situated himself in the pilot's seat, he strapped himself into the seat, and began the pre-flight sequence and sealed the rear hatch. The shaking of The Hades Eclipse had re. As the pre-flight checks came back green, Black 6 began to engage the thrusters and the flight systems. He cranked the thrusters up to max, as he issued the command to arm the on-board missiles that were mounted under the wings. Black 6 targeted the hanger bay door, and fired off the full payload of missiles, blowing the hanger bay door to pieces, and providing him a means of escape. Black 6 then issued the command to release the docking clamps. As soon as the clamps had released, the Pelican began to slide backwards, but the thrust from the engines managed to quickly counter-act the fall, as the Pelican began to more forward, flying right towards the exit to the hanger bay, and right out of the ship.
As the pelican flew out of the hanger bay, it flew through a thick wall of black smoke that was being created by The Hades Eclipse burning up on its approach as well as the damage from the ship. However, the Pelican quickly emerged from the smoke, and Black 6 could see that he was in the atmosphere. He quickly corrected his heading, as he brought the Pelican about and made it level. As the Pelican leveled out, Black 6 could see that he was very close to the ground.
As Black 6 brought the Pelican about, and turned it around, he saw the final moments of The Hades Eclipse, as it flew towards a very large spire-like building in the not to far-off distance. Black 6 watched as The Hades Eclipse smashed right through the mid-section of the spire, destroying the entire upper half of the building, plowing right through, like an unstoppable juggernaut. Upon collision, the upper portion of the spire literally exploded, with debris from both the spire and The Hades Eclipse going in every direction. Some of the debris fell downwards, while some it flew outwards, spanning a very large area.
Black 6 continued to watch as The Hades Eclipse plowed into the ground not long after. The large ship smashed into the ground, almost totally falling apart upon impact. What was left of the ship slid on the ground, leaving a massive trail of destruction in its wake. Massive chunks of the ship flew off in every direction, until it had totally fallen apart into nothing more than a pile of burning scrap and debris.
Black 6: Well...that is certainly one way to make an entrance.
Black 6 began to adjust his heading once more, as he brought the Pelican about, and began to head towards the pre-define rendezvous coordinates. Black 6 pushed the Thruster's up to max, as he sped through the skies, eventually reaching the rendezvous point in only a matter of minutes. Black 6 could see that there were several Pelicans and multiple escape pods all over the area. Upon even closer inspection, he could see that quite a number of Insurrectionists had survived, and, for the most part, looked well enough to walk, at the very least.
Black 6 slowed his Pelican down, as he slowly began to descend. Black 6 landed his Pelican in a clearing and disengaged the engines. Black 6 opened the rear hatch, and unstrapped himself from the pilot's seat. As he stood up, and walked out of the cockpit, heading toward the rear compartment to disembark, he could see Vixen running towards his Pelican. As Black 6 stepped off the Pelican, he look at Vixen running towards him, and began to laugh.
Black 6: You didn't honestly think I was going to go down with The Hades Eclipse...did you?
Vixen scoffed as she approached Black 6, as she punched Black 6 in the arm.
Vixen: Tye...you asshole. I thought...I thought you were going to...
Black 6 interrupted.
Black 6: Die?
Black 6: Vixen...I was trained to kill...not to die. I can't believe you doubted me...even for a second. Even when the odds are stacked against me...I am trained to beat them.
Black 6 paused.
Black 6: I am not sure about the rest of you...but I am eager to continue the fight. We should get our boots on the line and get moving. Based on the distance we have to go, and the rate at which it is getting dark, the sooner we leave, the more night time we will have to recon, plan, and attack.
Vixen nodded in agreement.
Vixen: Agreed. The sooner we go...the better.
Black 6: Just give the order Vixen.
Vixen shook her head.
Vixen: No Tye...you give the order. If I have realized one thing, it is that when shit really hits the fan...you are the guy that should be in charge. Back on The Hades Eclipse...you knew exactly what to do when everything looked its worst. You shook off the fear, the terror, and the stress...and you took control. Between you and I...you are the better choice to lead us. The only way any of us are going to survive this is if you are calling the shots. That much is clear to me.
Black 6 looked at Vixen and gave her a firm nod.
Black 6: Very well. If you think that would be best...then you can count on me.
Vixen: It IS for the best Tye. Your natural inclination is to lead. I see it in you, and I am sure that you know it yourself. You ARE a leader...and right now...we need a leader. We need someone to keep us alive. You are the only person here who is qualified to do that.
Black 6 looked around him. He could see dozens upon dozens of other Insurrections, each of the either checking their weapons, gearing up, or waiting for orders. Not a single one of them was concerned about Black 6 taking charge. There was not a single objection.
Black 6 then looked into the far off distance. He could still see the bellowing smoke from the damage that The Hades Eclipse had caused from its impact. Like a giant flare, the black smoke in the sky marked the location of the next battle.
Black 6 then turned to look back at Vixen.
Black 6: It will not be easy...but I will do everything I can to get us out of here alive.
Black 6 paused.
Black 6: With that said...Do you see that huge bellow of smoke in the distance? That is also where we have to go. Underneath all that smoke...is whatever is left of a Trust installation. That is where we are going. If we get lucky...we may be able to cripple The Trust even further and find a ship to escape this planet in.
Black 6 paused.
Black 6: Our survival depends on being able to get to that facility and possibly locate a ship. If there is even the slightest chance we can find a ship there...we have to take it.
Vixen was very uneasy. She looked at all of the smoke and defiantly showed some concern.
Vixen: Getting through all that smoke and debris is going to be tough. It will be very difficult to breath in all of that. That could be very dangerous.
Black 6: I realize that...but we have no choice. It is now do or die. This is a perfect opportunity to converge on that area. The Trust are in total disarray. If we don't act now...we lose a golden opportunity.
Black 6 paused again.
Black 6: Let's get our boots on the line. We have a bit of a walk ahead of us. Let's move out!
Black 6 waved his hand forwards. All of the Insurrectionists began to move forward. Black 6 led the group of Insurrectionists as they began their trek towards the CIC. Vixen walked at the front of the large group of soldiers alongside Black 6. For most of the journey, there was no discourse or conversation. All in all...it was totally silent...save for the typical sounds of equipment rustling as a result of movement.
UNSC Marathon Class - The Ulterior Motive - Hanger Bay 3 - Currently in the APX-449 Star System - Center of Trust Activity known as The Apex - 1715 Hours - July 30th 2515
ODST Black Team had gathered in Hanger Bay 3, as per orders from Admiral Spender. Each of the men simply waited for Spender to arrive. When Spender did arrive, he stormed into Hanger Bay 3. He was walking quickly, and with much conviction. It was clear from his body language that he was in a very bad mood at the moment. Black Team saw that Spender was carrying a Shotgun in his left hand, and an M6G Magnum in the other. Black Team was surprised to see this, as they were not accustom to this sort of response from Spender.
Spender: ODST Black Team...I have bad news.
Black 1: Bad news?
Spender: Black 6 is alive...and he has turned coat. He has joined The Insurrection. He has assisted The Insurrection in mounting this...all out assault.
Black 5: Why would he do this? Why would he betray us?
Spender: I am unsure. However...it does not matter. He is a traitor and he must be dealt with like such.
Black 2: Surely...there must be another way to handle this?
Spender: There is NO other way! Black 6 must DIE! He MUST be eliminated! He is a traitor! He has turned coat! He has betrayed EVERYTHING we stand for! He has betrayed his uniform! He has betrayed Humanity!
Black Team was shocked to hear this sort of attitude from Spender. They had nenver seen him this disturbed before. However, they knew that orders were orders, and if their orders involved killing Black 6...then it had to be done.
Black 1: If Black 6 has gone rouge...and he needs to die...then he will die by our hands. Rest assured sir...Black 6 will die.
Spender: Be sure that he does die! Black 6 is your only priority!
Black 3: What about the other Insurrectionists? We can easily kill them off.
Spender: I don't care about them. They can be easily taken care of by deploying a platoon of Marines. Hell...even I could take care of them if need be. They are no threat.
Black 4: What about The Insurrectionist leader? Vixen? She has proven resourceful.
Spender was silent for a moment, as he considered his options.
Spender: Vixen...Kathryn...my daughter.
Spender: I will deal with her personally at some point. She is my responsibility and mine alone. She is one of my loose ends...and I will deal with it. However, given the circumstances...I have my list of priorities...and she is not at the top.
Black 1: SIr?
Spender: Black Team...let me be clear; your assignment is to locate and eliminate Black 6. My objective is to secure The HEURISTICS Facility.
Spender: You five are going down there...and I am coming with you. I will personally be taking charge of the defense of The Apex. It is time we finish this...once and for all. Our time is limited enough as it is. We cannot waste any more of it on situations like THIS. This ends today...all of it! Either we survive or they do. Is this clear?
Black 1: Crystal clear, sir.
Spender: Good. The other ships in orbit have already started their defense response, and are deploying soldiers to the surface as we speak. The situation down there is very ugly. Visibility has been reduced to near zero, and there is significant damage to the surrounding area. Reports indicate that everything above the 44th floor of the spire has been totally destroyed, and many of the surrounding structures have either been destroyed by falling debris, or severely damaged. However, there is no indication that the subterranean network of tunnels and facilities has been compromised. The rest of The Trust will work on securing the surface. If I know Vixen...and if I know Black 6...they are going in there to cause more damage. We must deny them access to the subterranean facilities. The odds of them locating the entry point to the subterranean facilities is slim...but I choose not to underestimate them. Are there any questions?
Black 2: What do you mean by subterranean facilities? Are you saying that there is a base UNDER the base?
Spender: No exactly. You see, despite the size of The Spire, there is also a sizeable subterranean portion of the facility where our most secured facilities are located. Our R&D, Intel, and even our best people are typically housed in the subterranean portion, while low-level operations are carried out in the spire. We also house the data center deep underground, along with the main reactors that power all of our facilities in this area. In the most basic terms...the subterranean facilities are more secured to ensure that delicate operations go unhindered...in case something like this happened.
Black 1: Is there anyone that needs to be extracted?
Spender: Anyone who is of significant importance to the leadership of The Trust was in orbit at the time. Myself, Hoffman, a few dozen field operatives, skilled R&D...that sort of thing. Anyone still on the surface at the moment can be replaced. As for extractions...we are not going down there to save people. We are going down there to stop Black 6 and Vixen. The rest of the Trust can worry about securing the area and evacuating people. My concern...our concern...is Black 6 and Vixen. Nothing else matters. We must pull all the stops to ensure they die.
Spender: I cannot emphasize this fact enough. If we do not stop those two...they could do considerably more harm to The Trust than they already have.
Spender paused once more. As he did, he holstered his Magnum, and hefted the shotgun he was carrying.
Spender: We have a job to do Black Team. Let's get to it!
Black Team nodded, as they followed Spender to a waiting Pelican. The six men boarded the Pelican and situated themselves, as they prepared to hit the surface.
The Apex - Planet's Surface - Outer Perimeter - 1730 Hours - July 30th 2515
As Black 6, Vixen, and The Insurrectionists moved closer, the scope of the damage started to become quite clear. The thick black smoke in the air had all but obstructed visibility. The entire area had been shrouded and it became quite clear that there was no way The Trust would have been able to spot any kind of approach or offensive. Despite the thick smoke in the air, it was possible to see piles of flaming debris scattered all around.
Black 6: There is no way we would have been able to do any kind of useful recon in all of this. This smoke is thicker than I thought. On the flip side...I doubt The Trust even sees us coming. With all this smoke...we are all pretty much blind. We can turn that to our advantage,
Vixen: We need to get out of here...
Vixen began to cough, along with multiple other Insurrectionists.
Vixen: The smoke...it is too much.
Vixen started to cough again.
Vixen: Your helmet must be filtering this crap...but we are exposed. We need to get out of this. We need to find SOME sort of shelter.
Black 6: Very well...let's pick up the pace! Keep moving! We may be able to find some degree of cover or shelter once we reach that facility.
Black 6 broke out into a full sprint, as he led everyone deeper into the thick smoke cloud. Vixen and the other Insurrectionists also began to sprint behind Black 6.
Black 6: Stay close...stay together. We do not want to get separated in this!
Black 6 activated his VISR in order to help him cut through the visibility obstruction caused by the smoke. As his VISR activated, he began to see outlines of hostile targets, vehicles, structures, and even inert debris. Black 6 could now see much more than anyone else on the field. Multiple red outlines began to appear on his VISR, indicating hostile contacts. As Black 6 ran forward, he reached to his side and drew one of his automags. As he ran, he took aim with his automag, taking aim at the closest red outlines that were showing up on his VISR. Black 6 began to fire, pulling off headshots, one after the other, as he cleared his direct path of hostiles.
As Black 6's clip ran dry, he stopped, and took cover behind a pile of debris. Black 6 began to quickly reload his weapon. Once he had reloaded his weapon, he switched to an open comm line and spoke to the Insurrectionists that were with him.
Black 6: Black 6 to all points...we have just hit the perimeter of the installation we were looking for. We are going to head towards what is left of that spire in the center of this installation. Do your best to check your corners around the other buildings. Stay close and keep together.
Black 6 readied his automag once more, as he leaped out from cover, and began to move forward once more. It was clear that The Trust was very disorganized at the moment, simply due to the amount of damage in the area. Black 6 was able to pick off isolated soldiers with relative ease, and avoid detection by using his suppressed weapons.
As Black 6 continued to move forward, he could see that he was getting close to the large spire that was at the center of the large facility. As he got even closer...ht could start making out the words on a large sign in front of the building, that was still largely intact.
Black 6: The HEURISTICS Facility.
Black 6 stopped in his tracks, as he looked around and analyzed the facility. His VISR had detected a door not far from where he was standing, but his VISR also indicated that the entire building was structurally compromised and unsafe for occupancy. However, given the situation, Black 6 had very few options.
Black 6: All points...this is Black 6. Continue to converge on my location. I think I found someplace we need to be.
Black 6 began to walk forward, keeping his automag ready. As Black 6 approached the main doors, he picked up speed, and barged right through the main door into the main lobby of the building. Once Black 6 had barged in, he looked around, and saw nobody in the main lobby. However, the sounds of alarms could be heard going off all through the building, and there were red lights flashing on the wall. If there were people in the lobby at the time of the attack, there wasn't any more.
Black 6 paced around the lobby for a moment, before he heard the door behind him open. Black 6 turned, and saw Vixen, along with several Insurrectionists enter the building.
Vixen: Tye...good find. It seems to be pretty tolerable in here...
Vixen coughed again.
Vixen: What is this place?
As Vixen said this, a dozen more Insurrectionists entered the building.
Black 6: The sign out front said "The HEURISTICS Facility".
Vixen: What the hell kind of name is that?
Black 6: I am not sure...
Black 6 watched as more Insurrections poured into the lobby. They began to space out, and take up position around the large lobby area, covering corners and various vantage points.
Black 6: But this defiantly feels like a Trust facility. The decor is just right.
Black 6 then looked at a screen on the wall. The screen had partially fallen off the wall, and the display was flickering. Every so often, a face would appear on the display. Black 6 recognized what he was seeing.
Black 6: Renegade...
Renegades avatar remained static on the screen, only disappearing when the screen flickered. Vixen had heard what Black 6 had said. She turned to him and had a curious look on her face.
Vixen: What did you say?
Black 6 pointed at the screen.
Black 6: Renegade...that is an AI. The AI's name is Renegade.
Vixen looked at the screen, and frowned. She raised her magnum, and shot the screen, destroying it.
Vixen: I didn't like the way that thing was looking at me.
Black 6 laughed, as he turned to watch as more Insurrectionists entered The HEURISTICS Facility.
Vixen: So Tye...what do we do now? Where do we go from here?
Black 6: It is tough to say. This place is a wreck but we cannot ignore the importance of this place. There has to be something we can use here that would...
Before Black 6 could finish his sentence, he was interrupted by a team of Insurrectionists.
Insurrectionist: Vixen...Tye...come over here. We found something you two may want to see!
Vixen and Black 6 obliged, and they followed the Insurrectionists around the corner. What they saw when they turned the corner was not immediately apparent.
Black 6: What are we looking at?
Insurrectionist: There is a broken down elevator shaft over there. There is no elevator in the shaft...but...based on how much further that elevator shaft goes down...I am guessing it goes down pretty deep. There might be an underground portion to this facility.
Black 6 walked up to the elevator shaft, as he leaned over the edge and looked down. The shaft was dark, but he could see that there was a bottom, and that the elevator shaft did go quite deep.
Black 6: It does look like there is something down there.
Vixen: Seems like a pretty big elevator shaft too. Defiantly intended to carry a few dozen at a time.
Black 6: Do any of the other elevators work?
Insurrectionist: No...they do not. It is not a lockdown problem, and it is not a power issue. Look up.
Black 6 looked up the elevator shaft. He could see what was left of the sky above, as well as all the smoke and the fire bellowing out of the building.
Insurrectionist: The entire upper portion of the building is gone. The elevator cables were snapped when the top portion of the building was destroyed by The Hades Eclipse.
Black 6: That makes sense Well...we can always climb down.
Vixen: Tye...that is a pretty treacherous climb downwards. Surely, there must be another way.
Black 6 shrugged.
Black 6: Not that I know of. I was never briefed on the layout of this structure. I didn't even know it existed before today.
Vixen: There has to be another way.
Vixen looked at the Insurrectionists around her.
Vixen: I want all of you to fan out. Look for anything out of the ordinary.
All of the Insurrectionists nodded, as they began to spread out and search the area. Vixen and Black 6 simply looked at each other.
Vixen: This is turning out to be quite the day. There have been quite a few turn of events.
Vixen began to walk with Black 6. They walked closer to the entrance of the building, back to the reception area.
Black 6: I would imagine it has been stressful for all of you.
Vixen: Somewhat...yeah. This is unlike anything I have ever done. It is quite stressful.
Black 6: For me...it just seems...almost run of the mill. I am sort of used to all of this. If there is one thing I can say for sure...it is that I have a much higher stress threshold now.
Black 6 began to pace around Vixen.
Vixen: Lucky you. Not so lucky for the rest of us.
Black 6: Yeah...well...it still came with a bullshit price tag.
Black 6 stopped in his tracks. He began to look around once more.
Black 6: The Trust builds fancy buildings on far away planets. They have the resources to recruit soldiers and officers to their cause. They have an entire battle group of ships, and they infiltrate our ranks. You would think that would be enough. You would think stripping a man of his decency and his ethics and turning him into a killing machine would be enough.
Vixen: Sometimes there is never enough to satisfy someone.
Black 6 stopped to look at Vixen. He was going to reply, but he stopped himself. Instead, he simply looked over Vixen's right shoulder.
Black 6: Hmmm...
Black 6 walked past Vixen, as he approached a corridor that was only about 15 yards long, before it turned into a dead end. Vixen turned, as she kept her eyes on Black 6.
Black 6: That's odd. What is up with the dead end here? Seems like a strange place to have one.
Vixen: How so? What is wrong with a dead end?
Black 6: I am not sure. It just seems odd. This is the only dead end on this floor, and it just seems out of place. Why would anyone put a corridor with a dead end, and no offices in the reception area?
Black 6 began to walk down the corridor. He approached the wall all the way at the end. He placed his hand on the wall, but did not notice anything out of place or strange.
Black 6: Very odd...
Black 6 looked around the corridor. He did not see much. There was a small table with a potted plant on it about halfway down the corridor, and three wall mounted lights.
Black 6: Why are these lights here? I have not seen these anywhere else.
Vixen looked at the three lights. She then approached the first one in the group, as she placed her hand on it. Her intention was to remove the light, but instead, upon her touch, the light made a tone, as if it was signifying interaction.
Black 6: Whoa...indeed.
Black 6 touched the third light in the series, and it made a similar sound, but the tone was a bit off.
Vixen: That is very odd.
Black 6 stepped back. He looked at the three lights for a minute. After some consideration, he shook his head.
Black 6: It can't be...can it?
Vixen: Can't be what?
Black 6: This may sound cliché...but...is this the lock to a secret door?
Vixen began to laugh.
Vixen: Very cliché.
Black 6: Yeah? Humor me; hit the lights in order, first, second, third. See what happens.
Vixen shrugged, as she did what she was asked. She walked to each light and tapped each one, one after the other. However, the rate at which she touched them was quite slow. She had waited for the tone to dissipate before hitting the next light.
Black 6 shook his head. He was not convinced. Black 6 decided to try. He walked to the first light in the series and took a moment. Black 6 took a deep breath, as he sprinted down the corridor, hitting each light a single time, hitting all three lights in very rapid succession. Once Black 6 had hit the third light, he could hear the sound of a very large lock opening behind the dead-end wall. Once the locks had seemingly disengaged, the wall moved back, and began to open - revealing a staircase leading downwards into a sub-basement which, in comparison to the main lobby, was very metallic and industrial.
Black 6: A harmonic resonance lock. Very smart.
Vixen: What the hell? What just happened?
Black 6: That "door" was sealed by what is called a harmonic resonance lock. The lock on the door only opens up when a very specific harmonic tune is created in close proximity. The harmonic tone, in this case, was all three of those sounds combined.
Vixen: I would NEVER have figured that out. How the hell did you know that?
Black 6: I read it on the ChatterNet
Black 6 shrugged.
Black 6: Does not matter though. Go and round up your Insurrectionists. Let's check out what is going on in the sub basement! I will scout ahead. You get everyone together!
Before Vixen could given any sort of objection, Black 6 had turned and began to sprint down the stairs.
Vixen: Damn it!
Vixen sighed in frustration, as she turned to gather up the rest of the Insurrection.
Black 6, on the other hand, continue down into the sub-basement. After moving down several sets of stairs, which were going downwards in squared fashion, Black 6 found himself in a long corridor. It was noticeably colder in the sub-basement, and it was very quiet. However, Black 6 did notice another screen on the wall. Once again, the screen showed a static image of Renegade.
Black 6: Not you again...
Black 6 looked at the screen, and frowned when he saw the words GET OUT appear on the screen.
Black 6: No...I plan on staying exactly where I am. In fact...I may just snoop around.
Black 6 turned his head a bit when he began to hear footsteps coming down the stairs. It only took a moment for Vixen to appear and show herself, following by multiple Insurrectionists.
Vixen: Way to go on ahead Tye. You could have waited.
Black 6: I could have...but I wanted to make sure it was clear before we lead everyone into an unknown situation. From what I gather...it seems clear.
Black 6 paused.
Black 6: I am not sure what is down here...but I am willing to bet that this place can be quite vast.
Vixen: So...what do you suggest?
Black 6: We should split up. We can cover more ground.
Vixen: Is that a wise idea? We have no idea what we are going to find.
Black 6: Splitting up into smaller squads presents us with the ability to cover more ground and do more damage. We can dive and conquer anything down here.
Vixen: Fair enough. Covering ground makes sense. What exactly should we be looking for?
Black 6 shrugged.
Black 6: Anything that looks important. Computer systems. Power supplies. Locations of possible ships. Anything like that. Anything that will possibly help us get off this planet or crippled The Trust. That is what we want.
Vixen: Seems sound enough. Alright...two teams it is. How should we divide this up?
Black 6: No...we should split into multiple smaller teams. I am thinking teams of 4 or 5...tops. Smaller teams can move faster, and we can cover much more ground. It will also allow us to better map out the location of hostiles and points of interest.
Vixen thought about it, and eventually nodded in agreement. She turned to the Insurrectionists
Vixen: Alright...listen up everyone. We are going to be splitting up into smaller teams. Squad leaders...get your teams organized and fan out. I want regular check-ins from all squads, and I want to to get an idea of how big this place is! Shake the lead out!
All of the Insurrectionists got right to work, as they began to regroup in their designated squads. As the Insurrectionists paired up, Vixen turned back to Black 6, and looked at him.
Vixen: I am guessing that you and I are sticking together?
Black 6: Of course. Grab a squad, and tell them to follow along with us.
Vixen turned to her left, as she pointed to a group of four soldiers.
Vixen: Rodriguez...you and your squad is with Black 6 and I! Form up!
Black 6, Vixen, and the squad of Insurrections broke off from the main group. They moved quickly through the corridors, keeping their eyes open for anything of strategic importance.
Black 6: Stay sharp...keep your eyes open. Speak up if you-
Before Black 6 could finish his sentence, he came under fire from Trust Marines who were simply on a patrol. Black 6 began to fall back, turning a corner to find cover.
Black 6: Get back...take cover...
Vixen and the squad of Insurrectionists provided cover for Black 6 as he moved back into cover. Black 6 stayed behind cover, listening to the firefight. He listened for the gunfire that was coming down the corridor. Based on what he could hear, he knew that out of the four Trust Marines, two of them were trigger happy, and the other two were far more conservative.
Black 6: This is a standard attack pattern...
Vixen fell back behind cover, and looked at Black 6.
Black 6: Two up front to assault...two behind to cover. I got this.
Black 6 drew his second automag, as he held both of them up at the sides of his head. Black 6 then emerged from cover and ran out into the corridor, running towards the wall, and jumping at it. Black 6 then pushed himself off the wall, effectively propelling himself into the air, giving him a vantage point in order to shoot the Trust Marines who had stayed back to provide cover.
Black 6 took aim with both of his automag, aiming both of his automags at both supporting Marines. Black 6 did not hesitate for even a moment to pull the trigger. Black 6 placed a bullet into each of their heads. Black 6 then shifted his focus to the two assault Marines. They had literally stopped in their tracks as they looked on in awe at what Black 6 had done. Black 6 capitalized on this, and extended his arms and knocked both men down as he came crashing downwards.
Black 6 quickly recovered, almost jumping right back to his feet, as he aimed both of his automags downwards, and pulled both triggers, killing the other two marines he had just knocked down.
Vixen and her Insurrectionists looked on in total shock, having never seen anything like that before.
Insurrectionist: Holy shit...
Vixen: Holy shit is right.
Black 6 turned to face Vixen and The Insurrectionists.
Black 6: As I was saying...speak up if you see anything interesting...and stay behind me. I can take care of the hostiles. Just watch my six.
Black 6 turned again, and continued to move down the corridor. Vixen and the Insurrectionists shrugged, as they followed behind Black 6.
The Apex - Planet's Surface - HEURISTICS Facility - Subterranean Hanger Bay - 1800 Hours - July 30th 2515
A Pelican carrying ODST Black Team and Spender flew down towards what was left of the HEURISTICS building. Black 2 was piloting the Pelican, and he saw the damage first hand.
Black 2: Guys...have you see this? Black 6 did a real number on this place.
Spender and Black 1 walked towards the cockpit. They each looked out the cockpit window, and were taken aback by the damage.
Spender: Do any of you have any idea how long it took to build HEURISTICS? The time it is going to repair this facility is going to be extensive.
Spender: This facility has never been attacked before. It was never even conceivable.
Spender: To see it like this now...
Spender turned away and walked back to the passenger bay.
Black 1: It looks pretty bad.
Black 2 nodded in agreement.
Black 2: What is bad is trying to navigate through all this smoke in the air. It is tough to get an accurate reading on the hanger bay entrance.
Black 2 began to descend in the Pelican.
Black 2: Everyone sit tight...this may get bumps.
The Pelican continued to descend. As it got closer to the ground, a very large hanger bay door built into the ground, just outside the main perimeter of the base, opened up. The Pelican continued to lower down into this hanger bay, until it touched solid ground. The Pelican bounced a bit, but was firmly on solid ground. Black 2 had disengaged the engines, opened the rear hatch, and left the cockpit, heading to the rear compartment.
Black 2: We are down. From the looks of it, we are in the correct spot.
Spender: Well done Black 2. Excellent work on getting us through the smoke cloud.
Spender paused, as he looked at each member of ODST Black Team.
Spender: I want each of you to keep tabs on the 218 KHz frequency. That will be the channel that all of our personnel will be using to coordinate. Keep tabs on it and use it to your advantage.
Spender paused as he readied his Shotgun.
Spender: I want the five of you to locate Black 6 and eliminate him. I am going to head to the CIC of this facility and ensure that no Insurrectionists have take it over. Securing the CIC is of top priority. After that is done...I will let you know. We can regroup after.
Black 1: Sir...is it wise for you to go off by yourself?
Spender: Son...I have been going solo for a very long time. I know how to handle myself. I am a lot more capable than I look.
Black 1 nodded.
Black 1: Understood sir.
Spender: With all that said...do what you have to do to get Black 6. You are hereby authorized to do use all necessary force.
Spender cocked his shotgun.
Spender: It should go without saying. Black 6 is already using all necessary force. Don't expect him to just roll over for you.
Spender: Black 6 is very dangerous. He is desperate, and he is cornered. He will be ready for everything you can throw at him.
Black 4: We are ready to throw it back at him.
Black 5 stepped forward, and interjected nefore the conversation went any further.
Black 5: Sir...are we sure that there is nothing we can do to convince him to come back?
Spender: I am sure Black 5. Black 6 has made his choice. His actions her today have proven that he wants nothing to do with us. He has been corrupted by The Insurrection and their ideas. He is beyond redemption and he is beyond help. Do not pity him and do not show him any sort of compassion. Black 6 is the enemy.
Spender: Is that clear?
Black 5: Very clear...sir.
Spender: It better be clear Black 5. If you show uncertainty...Black 6 will take advantage of that.
Black 5: There will be no uncertainty.
Spender: Good. Now, if there is nothing else...go. Find Black 6. Deal with him. I will get to the CIC and ensure that it is secure.
Spender turned and walked off the Pelican. Just as he did, he saw that there was a squad of Trust ODSTs guarding the hanger bay. Spender simply looked at them, and snapped his fingers.
Spender: The four of you...with me!
Spender then resumed walking, as the four Trust ODSTs followed Spender. However, before leaving the hanger bay, Spender turned to face Black Team.
Spender: One more thing Black Team...keep something in mind; Recall Directive 1...means to come back here, to the hanger bay. I have a feeling we are going to need to establish that understanding. Keep it in mind.
SPender grinned, as he turned back, and left the hanger bay with the Trust ODSTs.
ODST Black Team simply look at each other as they processed everything they just heard.
Black 4: Alright guys...you heard the man; find and kill Black 6.
Black 1 nodded.
Black 1: Find and kill Black 6.
Black 1 readied his assault rifle. Black 1 turned, and led the other 4 men off the Pelican.
Black 1: Ensure that you add the 218 KHz frequency. Let's keep tabs on that for possible leads on Black 6.
Each member of Black Team began to adjust their helmets. It only took a moment for them to do this.
Black 1: Alright. Watch your corners. Black 5, keep tabs on our six. Let's go.
Black 1 led the team out of the hanger bay, and into the main corridors. Black Team immediately picked up the pace, as they moved quickly and quietly. As they moved, they kept tabs on Trust communications, making on the fly decisions based on what they were hearing. It was not long before ODST Black Team had engaged a squad of Insurrectionists in the corridors.
Insurrectionist: Contacts spotted!
ODST Black Team, however, we the first to reach. Black 1, Black 3, and Black 5 moved forward, as they opened fire. The aggression with which they pushed forward with, quickly overwhelmed the Insurrectionists.
Insurrectionists: Ohhh shit...fall back!
However, ODST Black Team made quick work of the Insurrectionist squad that they had encountered. It only took seconds for ODST Black Team to kill, and move right through the squad of Insurrectionists. ODST Black team did not even stop to examine their handy work. They simply kept moving, showing little interest in the peons that they had just killed.
Black team kept moving, as they listened to the comm chatter from various Trust forces in the base.
Trust Marine 1: We have Insurrectionists in Gamma wing...approaching the medical division. We have them engaged and contained.
Trust Marine 2: Hostiles have taken the barracks. We need reinforcements in Ilo wing...repeat...reinforcements to Ilo wing.
Trust Marine 3: Currently engaging hostiles in Beta wing. Hostiles are trying to push forward to Delta wing. We are being pushed back. We need help right now. Some ODST is just kicking our asses over here!
Black Team reacted immediately, as they began to move towards Delta wing. As they moved, they heard Spender contact them over the comm line.
Spender: Black team? I trust you heard that?
Black 1: Loud and clear sir. We are on our way right now. Based on our current position, we should be there momentarily.
Black 1 fell silent, as he picked up the pace, breaking into a full out dash. The rest of Black Team followed behind Black 1, as they moved as quickly as they could through the metallic corridors.
As Black 1 led the team, he began to speak to the other members of ODST Black Team.
Black 1: Alright Black Team...remember what Spender said...no mercy, no pity. We apply force and we take this traitor down. He may look like us, and he may fight like we do...but he is a traitor, through and through. He has turned his back on the best Humanity has to offer, and he is proud of that fact. We put him down today!
Each member of Black team firmly nodded in full agreement.
Black 5: Fully understood Black 1. Hopefully I get the chance to put him down myself!
Black Team continued to move. They slowed down a bit as they entered Delta wing. The moment they entered Delta wing, Black 1 contacted Spender.
Black 1: Sir...we have entered Delta wing. We can hear gunfire. We are converging now.
Spender: Excellent work Black Team. I have entered the CIC and, for the most part, it is secure. I have two squads of ODSTs stationed our front, ensuring Alpha wing remains clear. I will try and get our main systems back online here so I can monitor you from here.
Black 1: Understood. Black 1 out.
Black Team began to sprint, as they followed the sounds of gunfire. With each step, the sounds of gunfire became louder and louder. They were close...very close. ODST Black Team began to move slowly, as they formed up into a defensive posture. The five men walked towards a 4 way junction, the sound of gunfire coming from the corridor on the left.
ODST Black Team moved silently, as they got closer and closer to the junction. They could see Trust marines flying out from the left, as they were gunned down and killed by a hail of gunfire. As they moved closer, they could hear the sound of Black 6's voice giving orders.
Black 6: Alright...move forward! Down the corridor!
Black Team could hear the footsteps of multiple soldiers, exactly six people coming their way. Black Team readied themselves, as they turned the corner, and came face to face with Black 6, Vixen, and a squad of Insurrectionists. Each member of ODST Black Team had their weapon's raised, each of them aiming at Black 6.
Black 6 stopped dead in his tracks, as he saw the other five members of Black Team take aim at him Vixen and the squad of Insurrectionists raised their weapons and aimed at Black Team.
Vixen: Tye...looks like we found your friends.
Black 6: Something tells me they are not my friends anymore. I don't think they are here as friends.
Black 6 paused.
Black 6: Jonas...Evan...Arch...Kraven...Eli...put the guns down guys.
Black Team remained silent. Black 6 knew that there was something very wrong. The fact that they would not even respond to him, was a dead giveaway that something was terribly wrong.
Black 6: Guys...listen to me...I know you five think that you are doing the right thing here...but believe me...you are doing the wrong thing. Spender is not your friend. Spender is manipulating you...he is controlling you...all of you!
Black 6 paused.
Black 6: Whatever it is he has ordered you to do...do NOT do it!
ODST Black Team simply looked at Black 6. Black 1 raised his hand to his helmet, and began to speak.
Black 1: Sir...we have located Black 6...and Vixen. What should we do with her?
Black 1 paused for a moment as he listened to Spender's orders through the comm.
Spender: Focus on Black 6...I will find Vixen and deal with her.
Black 1: Understood.
Black 1 lowered his hand, as he gripped his rifle.
Black 1: Black Team...disengage safety. Kill this prick! Leave the bitch to Spender!
Black 6 began to back up. He watched as ODST Black Team moved to disengage their safeties. Black 6, however, already had the safety on both of his SMGs disabled. He simply raised his SMGs and began to fire.
Black 6: Vixen! Fall back! NOW!
ODST Black Team split into two groups, as they moved into cover around the two corners to the left and the right of the 4 way junctions. Black 6 kept up the suppressive fire!
Black 6: Move it! Black 3 can bounce shots!
Vixen and the Insurrections had turned and began to run the direction from which they came. Black 6 backed up, as he continued firing, keeping ODST Black Team suppressed as best as he could. However, despite his efforts, Black 3 began to bank shots off of the corridor wall. Sniper shots rang out, ricocheting off the wall, and going down the corridor at random trajectories. Each of Black 3's shots had landed square in the backs of each of the Insurrectionists that had accompanied Vixen and Black 6.
Black 6: Vixen! Turn the corner...NOW!
Black 6 holstered one of his SMGs as he reached to his belt, grabbed a grenade, and threw it down the corridor, towards Black Team.
Black 1: Frag! Scatter!
ODST Black Team moved further down their respective corridors, as the grenade went off. Black 6 took this opportunity to catch up with Vixen.
Vixen: Tye...how the hell does Black 3 fire his Sniper like that!?
Black 6: I have no idea how he manages to place his shots...but he is deadly accurate. There is no cover from his fire! If you see him...shoot him!
Vixen and Black 6 continued to run. However, Black 6 knew that no matter where he went, his former team was going to chase him down and they would not stop until they caught him. As Black 6 moved with Vixen, he began to speak with her.
Black 6: Vixen...we need to split up! They are after me.
Vixen: If they are after you, then splitting up is a bad idea.
Black 6: That's just it...they are after me, not you. IF we split up...you can get away.
Vixen: No...we stick together!
Black 6: Vixen...this is not up for debate! I am not going to put you in danger like that! These men are dangerous! They have been, literally, programmed to mercilessly kill anything in their path.
Black 6 paused.
Black 6: They are here to kill me. If you don't get away from me, they are going to kill you as well!
Black 6 paused.
Black 6: Your only chance is to find a way out...and get the hell out of here! Please! Do not follow me! Get out of here! Nothing else matters! Just...run!
Vixen had a look of sadness run across her face.
Vixen: I will find a way out of here...and I will contact you when I find it! Just...hang in there Tye. Just...stay alive!
Vixen: Don't die. Stay safe...
Black 6 looked at Vixen. He turned his head as he heard the sounds of heavy boots closing in
Black 6: Vixen...run!
Vixen began to back up. She was hesitant to turn.
Black 6: RUN!
Vixen broke out into a dash, as she continued to run. Black 6 watched as Vixen ran. He then turned and aimed both of his SMGs down the corridor that Black Team was coming from. Black 6 took cover, and waited for them to turn the corner. Despite the current situation, Black 6 found himself at a calm. He was neither nervous nor anxious. Black 6 was ready for the fight that was coming at him head on. Part of him knew that it would come down to this, and that part of him was ready and willing to fight to the death.
Black 6 inhaled, and held his breath, just as Black Team began to turn the corner. The second that Black 6 spotted Black Team, he began to fire both of his SMGs. Each member of Black Team quickly recoiled into cover behind the corner, as Black 6 fired.
Black 2: There is no point in fighting Black 6! We have you outgunned and outmanned!
Black 2 nudged Black 4. Black 4 looked at Black 2, as Black 2 gestured to circle around and flank Black 6. Black 1 saw the exchange, and gave a nod.
Black 6: Outgunned and outmanned...but I am still alive Evan!
Black 1: You won't be alive for much longer Black 6! We were always better!
Black 1 looked at Black 3 and nodded. Black 3 aimed around the corner, as he began to bank shots off the wall. Black 6 was forced to duck behind cover to avoid being hit by Black 3's shots. Black 6 could see from his HUD that he needed to reload. However, before he could begin to reload, he could tell by the lack of gunfire that he was being converged upon. Black 6 holstered both of his SMGS, as he waited a moment, before popping out from behind the corner. As he popped out, he came face to face with Black 1. Black 6 grabbed the grip of Black 1's Assault Rifle, and pushed it up, hitting Black 1 in the face with his own weapon. After the impact, Black 6 was able to pry the weapon from Black 1's hands. As Black 6 turned the weapon on Black 1, Black 3 had emerged from around the corner taking aim. Instead, Black 6 rolled forward, avoid a sniper round that wound have hit him in the head, and fired on Black 3. Black 6 had taken aim, not at Black 3, but at Black 3's weapon. The shots that Black 6 had fired off had impacted Black 3's Sniper Rifle, knocking it right from his hands and destroying the weapon.
Black 3 watched as his weapon hit the ground. He could see that bullets had damaged the weapon beyond any sort of use. Black 3 turned back to Black 6, and drew his automag.
Black 3: You prick!
Black 6 fired at Black 3 once more, hitting him several times in the chest. Black 3 flew back, as he hit the ground. Black 3's kevlar absorbed the majority of the impacts, but he no doubt felt what had hit him.
As Black 6 turned back to face Black 1 to open fire, Black 1 struck the side of the Assault Rifle in Black 6's hands, causing Black 6 to shoot the wall. However, Black 6 quickly recovered from this, as he slammed the butt of the Assault Rifle into Black 1's chest, and once more right into the side of Black 1's helmet. The force of impact caused Black 1 to stumble against the wall.
Black 6, once again, took aim at Black 1, but before he could fire, Black 6 saw Black 2 and Black 4 emerge from around a corner on his flank. Black 6 quickly turned and began to fire on Black 2 and Black 4, forcing them into cover.
As Black 6 fired at Black 2 and Black 4, Black 1 charged Black 6, and tackled him into the wall. Black 1 pinned Black 6 against the wall, as Black 2 and Black 4 once again emerged from cover. Black 1 attempted to wrestle the Assault Rifle from Black 6's hands, while Black 2 quickly moved forward, as he used the butt of his shotgun, and struck Black 6 in the side of the head, as hard as he could. Black 6 lost his grip on the Assault Rifle, as he fell to the side. Black 2 aimed his shotgun at Black 6.
Black 2: Told you that we have you outmanned and outgunned.
Black 6 shook off his daze, as he rolled over, and lifted his feet in the air, and kicked Black 2's shotgun right from his hand with tremendous force. Black 6 then leaped back to his feet, stepped back, and gave a shuffle sidekick right to Black 2's chest. Black 2 went flying back right into Black 4, both men falling to the ground.
Black 6: And I told you that I am still alive.
Just as Black 6 said this, he was shot in the back by three battle rifle rounds, fired by Black 5. Black 6 almost fell to the ground, but he managed to steady himself as he stumbled forward. Black 6 knew who had fired the shots, and he knew that if he didn't find cover, he was going to keep getting shot.
Black 5: You should learn to cover your Flank Black 6. It seems to be your biggest flaw.
These words rang in Black 6's ears. He had heard similar words when he had tried to fight ODST Black Team on The Ulterior Motive. Black 6 couldn't help but think that history was repeating itself. In spite of everything that he tried to do...Black 6 found himself in the same situation once again.
Despite this, Black 6 dashed forward, but Black 5 shot him once again in the back. Black 6 winced his eyes behind his visor, as he knew that his Kevlar would not be able to take much more punishment. Black 5 fired for a third time. This time, Black 6 flew forward, and landed on his stomach, hitting the ground hard, and sliding against the floor. Black 6 could see his HUD flashing that he had been wounded from gunfire. The only sound Black 6 could hear was the beeping inside of his helmet. Black 6 began to crawl forwards, trying to escape. However, his efforts were squashed, when he felt a heavy boot step on his back, stopping his escape.
Black 5: It didn't have to be this way Black 6. Spender did so much for you. He made you a better man. He improved you...made you better...made you strong. How do you repay him? You turn your back on him and you betray him! How disgusting!
Black 5 shook his head.
Black 5: I cannot believe I considered a man, like you, my friend at one time. I know better. I should have been able to see through you.
Black 5 paused.
Black 5: I spoke highly of you to Spender. I vouched for you. I wanted you to be a part of something bigger! For a time...you were part of something. However, your deep seeded self-righteous attitude reared its ugly head...and exposed you for the kind of man you are.
Black 5 scoffed.
Black 5: A small man...a weak man. A man of limited scope and limited vision. That is the man you were...that is the man you are...and that is the man you will die as.
Black 5 took aim at the back of Black 6's head.
Black 5: Any last words?
Black 6: Yeah...just one thing...
Black 6 coughed.
Black 6: You talk too much.
Black 6 had been cooking a flash bang in his hands for the past few seconds, as he threw it up. Black 5 saw the flash bang, but his VISR was unable to react fast enough. The flash bang went off, and the loud noise and bright light had momentarily stunned all five members of Black Team. Black 6, on the other hand, had manually triggered his BDU's defensive measures, and was largely unaffected by the flash bang. Black 6 used this chance to pull himself together, get back to his feet, and fall back in order to think of a new strategy for fighting ODST Black Team. Black 6 didn't take any chances...he simply ran as fast as he could to put as much distance between himself and ODST Black Team as he could. He knew this engagement was far from over...but he needed a plan and he needed an advantage.
The Apex - Planet's Surface - HEURISTICS Facility - Subterranean Corridors Near Alpha Wing - 1830 Hours - July 30th 2515
Vixen was moving through the corridors of The HEURISTICS Facility's sub basement. She was moving quickly, evading confrontations and avoiding combat in order to try and find some way out of the facility and off the planet. Vixen had a very heavy hear, knowing that she had left Black 6 behind to face the rest of Black team. Even thought she did what she had to do, and Black 6 had encouraged her to do it, she could not shake the guilt from what she had done. Despite this, Vixen knew that she could not let her judgment get clouded by emotion. She had to stay focused if she was going to survive.
As Vixen moved through the corridors, she eventually met up with two squads of her Insurrectionists. Vixen was relieved to be able to find some backup given where she was.
Insurrectionist: Ma'am...are you alright? Where is the rest of your team?
Vixen: The squad we were with was taken down. Black 6 and I had to split up.
Vixen: Where are you boys heading?
Insurrectionist: Alpha Wing. We got a hold of some intel which suggests that there is a high-ranking Trust officer there. If he is still there, we were hoping to capture him and leverage him.
Vixen: Good plan. Let's go! Take point!
Vixen reached to her side and grabbed her sidearm, and held it at her side. She moved along with her Insurrectionists, moving at a quick pace. For the most part, they moved largely unhindered.
Vixen: How far are we from Alpha Wing?
Insurrectionist: Not far. We managed to get a hold of a floor plan from one of their computer systems. We have been using it to move about the facility. We have been able to get the drop on quite a number of soldiers.
Vixen: Very nice.
Insurrectionist: As per your question...we are not far. Just pas the upcoming junction is where Alpha Wing starts. After that, it is not far to the CIC of this entire facility.
Vixen grinned and nodded. She was impressed by the resourcefulness of her soldiers given the situation.
Vixen: Very nice work. That sort of intel was exactly what we needed.
Vixen continued to move with her Insurrectionists, as they entered Alpha Wing. She followed her Insurrections around a few corners and down a few corridors, before coming to a stop, along with the others.
Insurrectionist: According to our intel...the CIC is just up this corridor, and around the corner to the right. I don't think we have been detected, so we can move in very easily.
Vixen stopped. She looked down the corridor, then looked to her right. Based on the layout of the corridors, she could tell that it was possible to flank the CIC.
Vixen: Perfect. That will give us an excellent advantage. I want a few of you to circle around down the corridor to the right. I want to flank the CIC. Hurry up and get into position.
All of the Insurrectionists nodded, fully understanding their orders. Several Insurrectionists broke off from the main group, while Vixen led the others up the corridor. She stopped just before turning the corner, as she waited for the other team to get into position. She waited a moment, before she was contacted over the comm.
Insurrectionist: Ma'am...we are in position. Give us the word, and we will engage...
Vixen took a deep breath, and then gave the order.
Vixen: Engage. We will flank them.
Vixen waited a moment She turned her head, and nodded to the Insurrectionists who were with her, giving them the signal to be ready. The Insurrectionists raised their weapons, ready to move. As soon as the gunfire started, Vixen gave the order.
Vixen, and her team of Insurrectionists turned the corner, and flank two squads of Trust ODSTs that were engaged with the first team of Insurrectionists. This gave Vixen and her Insurrectionists the chance to line up shots, and make quick, clean kills. Vixen and her squad of Insurrectionists were able to inflict heavy casualties on the ODSTs before a few of them turned to engage Vixen and her Insurrectionists. One of the ODSTs had managed to kill one of the Insurrectionists that Vixen was with, and wound two others. However, the pincer maneuver proved to be too much for the ODSTs.
When the last ODST had fallen, and the smoke had cleared, Vixen saw that she only had 4 Insurrectionists left, out of the 8 that she had started with, two of them being wounded.
Vixen: Those ODSTs had put up one hell of a fight.
Vixen turned to look at the two wounded Insurrectionists. She saw that their wounds were critical. Vixen felt a swell of sympathy for her wounded comrades. She took a moment, and then looked at one of the healthier Insurrectionists.
Vixen: Based on your intel...is there a hanger bay around here?
Insurrectionist: Let me check...
The Insurrectionists grabbed is PDA, as he began to examine the map.
Insurrectionist: There is something that looks like a hanger bay in Epsilon Wing. It is quite a trek from here. Chances are though, if it is a hanger bay, it could be locked down. We should check the CIC first.
Vixen: I will check the CIC.
Insurrectionist: Ma'am...what about the Trust officer in there? There could be more of these guys in there.
Vixen: I will deal with them. Get the injured to Epsilon Wing. If that is a hanger bay....prep a ship for departure. I will make sure that everything is fine on this end.
Vixen: If you see Black 6 at all. Get him to Epsilon Wing. Do everything you can to help him.
Insurrectionist: Understood. Good luck Ma'am.
Vixen: Same to you. Now go.
The two Insurrectionists nodded, as they helped their wounded comrades to their feet, and they parted ways with Vixen. Vixen reloaded her Magnum, as she readied herself to breach the CIC. She approached the door, and took cover up against the wall. She man8vered her hand against the control panel, and she pressed a green button to open the door. To Vixen's surprise, the door was unlocked. With no trouble at all, the door opened. Vixen peeked around the corner, through the door, and saw that the CIC was deserted.
Vixen slowly walked into the CIC, her Magnum raised, looking down her iron sights. She slowly moved inwards, moving with caution. She knew this was too good to be true. Vixen knew something was not right. She knew that there had to be something or someone here worth the protection of those ODSTs. Vixen sighed, but just as she was about to lower her guard, she saw a frag grenade fly up from behind a holotable on the far side of the CIC...and it was coming right for her.
Vixen turned and jumped to the side, jumping behind a computer terminal for cover. Her ears began to ring a bit as the frag grenade exploded. She felt a bit disorientated as she got to her feet. However, as she got back up, and turned to face the spot where the grenade had exploded, she was face to face with Spender. Spender was already in the act of throwing a right hook right into Vixen's face. Spender did not stand on ceremony with this strike. He his Vixen with all of his might. The force at which he hit her sent her flying back, losing the grip on her weapon as she flew through the air and hit the ground.
Vixen groaned in pain as the reality o what just happened began to set it. She could feel blood coming from her nose, as she started to sit up. She watched as her father walked around the computer terminal, and laughed.
Spender: Kathryn...my little girl...how nice to see you. After all these years...to finally be face to face once again...
Spender: It makes me...sick.
Spender was still holding his shotgun in one hand, as he looked down at his daughter. Spender hefted his shotgun, and aimed it at Vixen. He had a huge grin on his face.
Spender: Here you are...at The Apex...my home turf. I never thought I would see the day where you would be here. I always wanted you to be here, as a member of The Trust. You would have made an excellent Trust operative. You had such potential. However, you chose to stand by some outdated morality and you refused to be any part of what is going to be the future of Humanity.
Vixen: I didn't want any part of your draconian vision! It is immoral and it is evil! I know what The Trust is capable of! I saw it firsthand! I never forgot!
Spender: You still believe that The Trust is evil. You still believe that our goals are immoral. All we want is to protect Humanity...from internal and external threats.
Vixen: No...you don't care about Humanity. You don't care about protecting people! You just want power! You just want to control everything around you! You tried to control me! You tried to control mom! You are controlling those men who worked with Tye!
Spender: ODST Black Team accepted a new way of doing things. They accepted what you refused. They are better off for it. They are playing a role in a greatness you will never comprehend.
Spender: Alas...you had your chance. I am done trying to convince you of the merits of what The Trust offers. Your stance is clear. You prefer insurgency over loyalty.
Spender held his Shotgun on Vixen. He cocked the shotgun, and prepared to fire. Vixen looked at Spender's hands, and saw that his finger was on the trigger. Any move she made, was going to result in her being blown away before she could even move a muscle. Vixen knew that she needed a plan. She needed to do something to save her skin.
Spender: Goodbye Kathryn.
Vixen: I pity you. I really do.
Spender: You? Pity me? How laughable.
Vixen: You deserve pity. You are a small man, so insecure about his place in the grand scheme of things that he feels that he can never have too much power...just to legitimize his own existence.
Spender: Do you think I do what I do because I am insecure about myself?
Spender: Have you not listened to a word I have ever said? The Trust is not about ego...it is about
Vixen: Preserving humanity. That is an excuse. That is what you say to make yourself feel better. That is what you say to convince yourself of your own lie. In reality...The Trust is about ego. The Trust is about power, control, corruption, and fulfillment of self. Black 6 told me what you did. He told me all about your little coup against this VERY organization. You revolted because you didn't like how they were treating you. You didn't enjoy losing your power and authority. There was a moment in time that you had nothing; no power, no control, no authority. The Trust turn on you, and you turned on them...and you began to kill each other like a pack of rabid wolves...all vying to be the alpha.
Spender: Shut up!
Vixen: You don't like hearing the facts.
Spender: You know nothing!
Vixen: I know enough! I know enough!
Spender: No...you know nothing!
Vixen: You lie to yourself. You don't care about Humanity. You care about yourself. You are a deranged narcissistic man that has to brain wash people and threaten people in order to lead them!
Spender: How dare you!
Vixen: How dare I? How dare you! How dare you speak the virtues of The Trust, claim to be the guardians of Humanity...yet you do everything possible to destroy it! ODST Black Team...you crushed their souls. You crushed their sense of identity. You crushed everything they were. What are they now? What are they, without you?
Vixen began to laugh.
Vixen: You claim to defend Humanity...yet you pulverized and annihilated it in your most loyal soldiers.
Vixen: Tell me..."dad"...and I use that word VERY loosely...
Vixen: What is our future according to The Trust? What will we have left? Will there be anything left that is worth any kind of effort to save?
Spender was furious. He grit his teeth, as he clenched his shotgun.
Spender: You are so fucking narrow minded! You are so blinded by your antiquated morals that you cannot see the perfect that The Trust would usher in! Humanity needs to be controlled! Humanity needs a leash, and The Trust the one to hold it! We will keep Humanity in line, so as to ensure that we will never have to fight another Insurrection ever again!
Spender: You and your terrorist cohorts threaten what The Trust has spent centuries protecting!
Vixen: My "terrorist cohorts" have only ever been a threat to you. I believe in the UNSC! I don't believe in you, or The Trust! You are frauds of the higher caliber! You are the scum of the universe!
Vixen saw Spender's finger remove itself from the trigger of his shotgun, as he lowered the gun slightly, turning it away a bit. She knew that this was the moment to strike and she knew that she had gotten to Spender on a psychological level. Vixen scoffed, as she used her hands to push herself forwards, quickly climbing to her feet. She grabbed Spender's shotgun, and pushed it lengthwise right into his chest. Vixen and Spender struggled over the gun, pulling back and forth. The two of them continued to struggle for a few moments. Vixen managed to get the upper hand, when instead of pulling on the shotgun, she pushed, just as Spender was pulling. This caused Spender to stumble back, causing both Spender and Vixen to fall over a desk. Both of them lost their grip on the Shotgun as it slid across the ground.
Both Vixen and Spender got back to their feet, but Vixen was the first to strike with a swift right hook, followed by a roundhouse kick. Spender stumbled back, slamming into the wall. He glared at Vixen, as he wiped a bit of blood from his mouth.
Spender: Not bad...
Spender charged forward at Vixen again, as he threw a left hook. Vixen had managed to evade the strike by recoiling, but Spender moved forward once more, and struck Vixen right a right hook. The force of impact tossed Vixen to the ground.
Spender: You are no match for me Kathryn!
Vixen got back to her feet, as she ran at Spender and tackled him to the ground.
Vixen: That is your opinion!
Vixen punched Spender in the face several times before Spender pushed Vixen off of himself. Spender then rolled away from Vixen, as he got back to his feet. Vixen was still in the process of getting back to her feet when Spender charged at her and drive his foot right into her side. Spender kicked her as hard as he could, causing Vixen to fly to the side, and land on her back.
Spender looked down at Vixen, breathing heavier than he normally was. He had a very cross look on his face as he scoffed at Vixen.
Spender: You are a lot of fucking trouble! Did you know that? Why won't you just accept your fate and die?
Vixen coughed, as she rolled to her side, as she began to crawl to her feet. However, before she could get back up, Spender kicked her down to the ground once more.
Spender: Why do you fight a battle that you cannot win!? Why do you resist?
Vixen: It is what SHE would want me to do.
Spender: SHE...is dead. You are throwing your life away every time you invoke her name, directly or otherwise!
Spenders walked over to Vixen, as he grabbed her by the back of the neck, and dragged her to her feet. Spender then tossed Vixen across the room, causing her to roll over a table and hit the ground.
Spender: You have become so weak and pathetic Kathryn; You should have joined us! Had you have joined us from the get-go...you would be so much more today! Alas...you are nothing.
Vixen scoffed, as she got back to her feet. She looked at her father from across the table she was thrown over.
Vixen: At least I still have my decency.
Vixen: At least I still have my principles!
Spender: That shit is meaningless if you cannot survive to have it!
Vixen: Yeah, well, I am still very much alive.
Vixen ran towards the table, and leaped over it. Vixen used her momentum to punched Spender right in the chest, and then follow-up with an elbow to the face, and a head-butt. This combo caused Spender to stumble backwards, and become a bit dazed. As Spender shook off his daze, he saw Vixen charge at him and kick him right in the chest with a shuffle sidekick. This caused Spender to fly backwards and land on the ground.
Vixen: And I still have a lot of fight left in me. Don't know about you though...you are looking a bit sluggish.
Spender groaned, as he began to get back to his feet. This time around, Vixen was the one to kick him while he was on the ground.
Vixen: What's the matter? Having trouble getting up?
Spender coughed as he tried to catch his breath. Just as he tried to get up again, Vixen once again kicked him while he was down. Once again, Spender fell to the ground.
Vixen: So much for the great Constantine Spender.
Vixen looked around, as she spotted her sidearm near one of the control panels in the CIC. She walked over to it and knelt down to grab her Magnum. As she did, she caught a glimpse of the computer she was next to, and saw that it was, in fact, one of the primary operations stations. Vixen looked at the screen, and saw that the hanger controls had recently been accessed. When she had accessed the control set, she could see that the hanger bay doors had been locked down. She tried to issue the command to open the doors, but she quickly found out that they had been encrypted with a password. Vixen turned back to Spender, and glared at him.
Vixen: What is the password to open the hanger bay doors in Epsilon Wing?
Spender scoffed at the question.
Vixen frowned and glared at Spender, as she aimed the magnum at his head.
Vixen: I am not fucking around. If you do not give me a straight answer...I will blow your fucking head off!
Spender considered his options. He knew that if he opened the doors for Vixen, she COULD kill him. He knew that she WOULD kill him if he didn't cooperate.
Spender: I could open the doors for you...but you are just going to kill me anyway...so I fail to see the point in cooperation.
Vixen: More than likely.
Spender began to stand up. Vixen tensed up, as she prepared herself to fire.
Spender: He is what I think. I think you need me...but you don't want to say it.
Spender: You are looking for a way out of here...because you know that if you don't find a way out of here...you are going to die here. However...there is more.
Spender: I think you are also looking for a way out for Black 6 as well. We both know he is facing steep odds...and every second that goes by, is the second that he could be killed by the rest of ODST Black Team. In other words...you don't have time to waste.
Spender: I am not stupid Vixen. I can see the look on your face when I mention him. Your pupils dilate, your skin flushed. I am not fucking blind, you know? I have been around a long time. I have seen a lot of things.
Spender: You are worried that ODST Black Team is going rip Black 6 limb from bloody limb. They are going to kill him. They are going to put him down like a rapid fucking dog.
Spender: There it is. There is the anger. You don't like what I am saying.
Spender: It is very obvious; there is something going on between the two of you...isn't there? I bet you two found common ground in your hatred of me...and...it just sort of went from there. Am I right?
Vixen: That is none of your business.
Spender: Of course not...but that is not going to stop me.
Spender: Contact him. Ask how he is doing. Let's see how close he is to death.
Spender: In fact...I have a better idea.
Spender turned around, as he face a large screen on the wall.
Renegade's image appeared on the large wall-mounted screen.
Spender: Access the internal CCTV system...and locate Black 6. Show me his current status.
The screen went black. After a moment, the display showed a camera feed, focused on Black 6. It was clear based on how Black 6 was moving that he was severely injured. The screen then divided, as it showed a video feed of ODST Black Team in pursuit of Black 6. It was clear that ODST Black Team was catching up to Black 6.
Spender: Oh no...he doesn't look good. Not good at all. Look how labored his movements are. He is running. He is in trouble. He is not going to make it. Black 6 is going to die. Black Team is going to catch him and finish him off.
Spender turned and looked at Vixen.
Spender: And there is nothing you can do to save him...or is there?
Vixen raised an eyebrow in interest.
Vixen: What are you talking about.
Spender: I can be a reasonable man Kathryn. I am prepared to offer to a deal.
Vixen: You are in no position to make a deal.
Spender: Yes...I am in the perfect position.
Spender walked towards Vixen.
Spender: I am prepared to let you leave this place Kathryn. I am prepared to let you leave with Black 6. I will call of Black Team, and I will unlock the hanger bay doors...if you back off, lower the gun, and walk away...FOREVER!
Spender: You can accept or decline...but you would be wise to accept.
Vixen looked at Spender with a great deal of uncertainty.
Vixen: That deal sounds too good to be true.
Spender: On the contrary...this is mutually beneficial for us all. It is the only way we all win. If I refuse to open those hanger bay doors, you will kill me, Black Team will kill Black 6, then they will kill you. We all die.
Spender: If I open those doors for you, I give you a way out, but I do not guarantee my own survival. The only way I can do is that is to tie my survival to Black 6's survival. You need me to call of Black Team. You need me alive to save Black 6.
Spender: Your survival is my survival. We need each other Kathryn. The moment I die...is the moment Renegade informs Black Team of my death. If I call of Black Team, and you kill me after that...Renegade will inform Black Team of your treachery. There is no way around this Kathryn.
Spender: We part ways, here, today, amicably...and we never cross paths again. You can keep Black 6...you two can live your lives...and I will live mine. It is what you want...right? You want a normal life. I am giving it to you. Take it!
Vixen felt uneasy, but she knew what she wanted, and so did her father.
Vixen: Alright...call them off...please.
Spender raised an eyebrow.
Vixen: You're right. I want a normal life. I want a life away from all of this...away from you...away from The Trust...away from The Insurrection. I am tired of fighting. I am tired of the struggle. I want what other people have so easily; a normal life.
Spender: And that is perfectly reasonable.
Vixen was hesitant. Her eyes shifted back to the large screen which showed Black 6 still struggling to move forward. As much as she hated to admit it...Spender was spot on about everything he had said...and she was not about to abandon Tye again.
Vixen: Call off your attack dogs. You win.
Vixen: Open the hanger bay door...and let us leave.
Spender: Good call...very good call.
Spender tapped a headset in his ear to contact ODST Black Team.
Spender: ODST Black Team...do you copy? Commence Recall Directive 1...break off your pursuit of Black 6. There has been a change of plans.
Spender looked up to watch the large display mounted on the wall. Both Vixen and Spender watched as ODST Black Team stopped in their tracks. ODST Black Team then turned around, as they began to walk off.
Spender grinned as he closed the comm channel.
Spender: Isn't their loyalty inspiring?
Vixen: I don't care about your drones or how loyal they are. Just open the hanger bay doors!
Spender: Of course...of coourse.
Spender walked over to the control panel, as he began to enter the commands necessary to open the doors. One the command had been given to open the doors, the console began to beep.
Spender: It is done. The doors are open Kathryn. You are free to go.
Vixen looked at Spender for a moment. She continued to point the gun at him.
Spender: You are not going to shoot me are you?
Vixen: If my survival didn't depend on not pulling this trigger...I would shoot you down like a fucking dog!
Vixen's voice was tense as she spoke.
Vixen: You only deserve that much.
Vixen frowned at Spender.
Vixen: If you EVER...EVER...come after, for any reason...all bets are off. I will kill you...and I don't care what depends on me NOT doing it...I will kill you. Stay away from me...and stay away from life.
Spender: Fair enough.
Vixen began to back up out of the CIC. Once she reached the door, she turned around, and ran off, as fast as she could.
The Apex - Planet's Surface - HEURISTICS Facility - Subterranean Corridors Near Alpha Wing - 1900 Hours - July 30th 2515
Black 6 was still moving through the corridors. He was starting to slow down, as he was still struggling with his injuries. Eventually, he came to a stop, and leaned against the wall. Black 6 began to breath heavily. For the first time, in a long time, he was starting to feel pain.
Black 6 put all of his weight against the wall as he needed to take a moment to compose himself. However, just as he did this, he could hear the sounds of footsteps closing in, as if they were running. Black 6 reached to his side and drew his sidearm and held it in his hands, in case he needed it. He aimed down the corridor, gripping his automag as the footsteps became louder. As Black 6 steadied his aim, he saw Vixen turn the corner. She looked at him leaning on the wall.
Vixen: Tye! Are you alright?
Black 6: No...I have been shot...in the back...several times...
Vixen: I know how to get out of here. I know where the hanger bay is! I can get us out of here!
Black 6 nodded.
Black 6: That's good. That's really good! Lead the way.
Vixen: Do you need help?
Black 6: Very much so. However...nothing that can't wait until we get the hell out of here. Do we have any more Insurrectionists left? Have you been able to make contact with anyone else?
Vixen: Not sure. I have not heard from anyone.
Black 6: Send a broadcast...see if we can rally everyone.
Vixen nodded in agreement. She tapped her ear and activated her headset.
Vixen: Vixen to all points...does anyone copy?
Vixen waited a moment for anyone to respond. However, there was no response from anyone.
Vixen: Is there anyone on this frequency? Is anyone out there?
There was no response. Vixen stopped, and looked at Black 6. She shook her head.
Vixen: Tye...nobody is answering. We may be the last ones left.
Black 6: if we are the last ones...the sooner we get out of here, the better. We have to hustle. Shake the lead out, and let's get the hell out of here.
Vixen nodded, as she took point, and continued moving through the corridors. Black 6 shook his head and got himself together, as he followed Vixen.
Black 6: How did you find the hanger bay?
Vixen: Some of my Insurrectionists got their hands on a floor plan. They told me roughly where it was. Some place called Epsilon Wing.
Black 6: I knew there had to be ships here. I just knew it.
Vixen: I managed to open the hanger bay doors. We are good to escape. All we need to do is make it to the hanger.
Black 6: Assuming the rest of Black Team does not catch us.