Author Topic: Man Down  (Read 1467 times)

Offline E.D.

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Re: Man Down
« Reply #15 on: January 09, 2017, 08:28:19 CST »
Thanks guys! I'll have to play with it and see what I like best!
Strength lies not in flesh and bone.

Offline E.D.

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Re: Man Down
« Reply #16 on: January 15, 2017, 23:45:06 CST »
CHAPTER EIGHT: Weekends are for...


I’m on my way to my office upstairs when the doorbell rings; I draw my weapon and rack it. It’s the weekend. The kids aren’t here. It should be impossible for anyone to ring the doorbell at Camp Parker. It rings again before I get to the front door and I hide my gun behind my back. No point in scaring an innocent bystander.

Standing on my doorstep is a woman with a box of parts in her hands. I step outside and casually look around for my so called security team before addressing my visitor. Nothing. Damn.

“Can I help you?” I make a conscious effort to seem relaxed.

“I thought I’d bring your drone back.  What’s left of it.” She put down the box and held out a hand. “I’m Leighann, your new neighbor.”

Oh. I take a closer look as I shake her hand. Tallish, dressed in a pair of shorts and a t-shirt, with reddish blonde hair in a ponytail. Blue eyes gaze at me out of an oval face sprinkled with freckles. Attractive. And somehow familiar.

“Are you going to invite me in?”

I was not. Curiosity can definitely maim the cat, even if it doesn’t kill it. Where the hell is my security team?

She tilts her head sideways, waiting for an answer. Then it clicks. This is the LHC of the FA9’s. My new neighbor.

“You said you wanted to meet me in person. I didn’t know it was business casual Saturday.” There’s a trace of sarcasm in her voice.

I am wearing my usual dress slacks and button down.

“No. You look...fine. Come in. I’m pretty sure I remember how to make coffee, if you’d care for some?”

She follows me, box in hand, to the kitchen. “Just put that anywhere.” I rifle through the cabinets looking for coffee until my housekeeper appears in the doorway.

“What can I make for you Chief?” Mrs. Haggart was not fond of me trying to help myself.

“Can you bring coffee service to my office?”

“Aye.” This and a curt nod were all I was going to get. She didn’t so much as glance at the LHC.

“Thank you Mrs. Haggart.” I snagged the box and the Lord High Commander on my way out. I’ll admit to being slightly terrified of Mrs. Haggart.

As soon as we were out of the kitchen, the commander pulled her hand from mine. I hadn’t even been aware I was holding it.

“Oh my Gods! She’s terrifying!” She leaned against the wainscoting and dissolved into laughter. For the first time in a long time I let myself join in. “We should send her to cook for Zoltar...”

The picture in my head of Zoltar cowering in fear of my housekeeper makes me wheeze with laughter as we make our way to my office.

“It wasn’t that funny.” She dropped into a chair by the window.

“It’s good to know it’s not just me.” I start to sit behind my desk, then change my mind and sit in the other chair. “It’s a pleasure to finally meet you in person Commander.”

“Please, just call me Leighann. I’d prefer to keep my work and private life separate if you don’t mind?” She waved a hand in the air. “Security is easier that way.”

One of my security detail brought the coffee and a light lunch and quickly departed. I took note of his name for later.

“It’s not really his fault, you know.” She sipped her drink before continuing. “We use some technology they just aren’t prepared for. And your systems are easily breached.”

“How did you get here without being seen?” I keep my tone mild, but I’m fuming.

“This.” She pushed a button on her phone and disappeared.

I got out of my chair and walked around the now empty one on the other side. On the third turn I noticed a shimmer where the sun hit whatever this was just so. I reached out to test the edges of the field and she suddenly re-appeared.

“It’s not a good idea to push the parameters. One of us might have a shocking experience.”

“May I?” I held out my hand for the device. She pulled a small pin out of her hair and handed it to me. “That’s it?” There wasn’t room for a power source. I turned the pin over in my palm, ignoring her smirk at my confusion.

“The pin is a passive transmitter. My phone supplies the power. It’s a simple trick of the light...” She put down her cup and stood. “Let me show you.”

CHAPTER NINE: So Close!


Damn. He’d been so close! She’d seen it working it’s way across his face before a newer connection was made. She shrugged. There was no reason for him to connect her with someone long dead.

The sun fell in dappled pools as she walked back through the forest adjoining their respective properties, presenting playful patterns on the path. She shook off the lingering disappointment and set her mind towards the rest of her day.

This planet. So rich. So beautiful. Perfectly positioned for habitation. Too bad it was already occupied. The new headquarters was coming along nicely. All the underground facilities were in and covered. Tonight was the first test of the hangar doors. The heavy equipment was moving in, along with all their gear.

The path opened onto a large lawn and her second in command, Rob Anjel.

“How’d it go?” He fell into step beside her.

“I wouldn’t want to be the guy in charge of security...” She smirked. “Heads are most likely rolling right now.”

“I would expect mine on a platter if he walked up to our door unopposed.”

“And I’d make you do it yourself. With a dull knife. Their tech is pretty run of the mill. So much so that I wonder what I’m missing?” The smell of freshly watered grass drifted past, reminding her of the last time she was on Earth. “That can’t be all they use. There must be something else.”

Rob raised one raven wing of an eyebrow. “Roos and Abel can’t find anything. Nothing out of the ordinary for a government security run system. Maybe there isn’t anything else.” He stepped ahead of her and pushed open massive double doors leading to the cavernous front hall.

Her personal quarters were on the top floor of the old hotel and she gratefully sank into her favorite chair, placed so she could enjoy the sweeping city vistas. Her dresser, Kaigani, had finished unpacking and waited in the office. After a quick change back into uniform it was back to work.
 Nickolas Anderson would have to figure things out on his own. Just going there had technically been against the terms of her contract, but she wanted to see him face to face. Besides, if she hadn’t shown her face soon, he would have issued a direct order. It was Kane that needed, no demanded that nothing destroy Anderson’s focus until the war was won. But he’d been so close...
Strength lies not in flesh and bone.

Offline Ebonyswanne

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Re: Man Down
« Reply #17 on: January 18, 2017, 04:49:22 CST »
I can see some of the plot forming here in the story. (I say that alot..lol) Spectra... and the hotel... Jason could be onto something here after all with the drone.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2017, 21:08:53 CST by Ebonyswanne »
Learn  the rules like a pro, and break them like an artist- Picasso

Offline E.D.

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Re: Man Down
« Reply #18 on: January 18, 2017, 21:41:40 CST »
You never know...
Strength lies not in flesh and bone.

Offline E.D.

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Re: Man Down
« Reply #19 on: January 22, 2017, 13:30:04 CST »
Here's this weeks post! Short and sweet!

CHAPTER TEN: Nothing


The whump of thousands stomping their feet in unison shakes the ground under my feet and my heart is hammering. I try to look away as they approach the raised platform, but my jailors hold my head up.

“Keep your eyes open or I’ll order them to make it slow...”

I sit bolt upright in bed, sheets clammy with sweat wrapped around me. Outside my window the steady thump of heli-jets works it’s way across the auditory horizon. I walk to the window and open the drapes. I can see the last of several enormous quad copters disappearing over the hill. The FA9’s are moving in.

I try going back to sleep, but memories surface every time I close my eyes. Some things you can never let go. Might as well get some work done. After a quick shower I head down to the kitchen for some coffee before heading to the office.

While I’m waiting for the satisfying gurgle and hiss to finish, I log on to my handie and add the dream to my journal. Keeping track of my nightmares helps me feel in control. Without control, I’m nothing more than a train wreck in a three piece suit.

Before I can pour a cup, an alert sounds on the small device, vibrating on the counter as Zark’s voice sounds in my ear.

“Chief! Susan just sent an alert! Another mecha is on it’s way!”

“Acknowleged. Scramble the team and call for transport to Center Neptune. Send me what you have.”

“Absolutely! My sensors are equipped to handle any number of tasks...”

I shut off the feed before it gets too far. I really need to replace that unit with something less...Zark.  My security team arrives  and we make our way outside to the heli-pad. Vega, my chief medical officer is waiting for us.

“What brings you out on this lovely...” I look at my watch, it’s three A.M. “Morning?”

“I was awake. My sleep cycle is still on Endarian time. Thought I’d catch a ride with you if you have room?”
“Of course. You’ll have to there anyway. How was your visit home?”

She laughs. “The usual. Not unpleasant, but not really enjoyable...if you know what I mean?”

I don’t so I just nod. The trasport is landing, all conversation is off until we’re inside. The ride to Center Neptune is uneventful and I spend it looking over the reports. Afterwards I decide to put the FA9’s on alert, even if it’s only for cleanup. I send a coded text and get an immedeate reply in the affirmative. That done, I check the status of the team. Everyone is enroute to pickup. We have enough advance notice on this one to brief at base. I sit back and try to relax for a few minutes. The nighmare still lingers, so I run though my litany to harness the fear and anger it left behind.

By the time we lock in at Center Neptune I’m ready to face whatever may come. The Phoenix is still dripping as maintenance rushes to fill the tanks and load ordinance. The team waits for me by the hangar doors, a show of respect. I’m not Dad here, I’m the boss. If there’s arguing to be done, we’ll do it in my office, with the doors closed. Mark’s face is carefully neutral, but there’s a sense of frustration emanating from the others. I’ll find out what’s going on later. For now, there’s a mecha on our doorstep.
« Last Edit: January 22, 2017, 22:30:55 CST by E.D. »
Strength lies not in flesh and bone.

Offline E.D.

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Re: Man Down
« Reply #20 on: February 02, 2017, 22:19:18 CST »
I'm on holiday until the end of February so I won't  be posting again until March!
Strength lies not in flesh and bone.

Offline ElectricWhite

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Re: Man Down
« Reply #21 on: February 03, 2017, 09:09:35 CST »
Thanks for the heads-up!
333
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Offline E.D.

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Re: Man Down
« Reply #22 on: January 10, 2018, 21:24:11 CST »
Oh my gosh you guys! I did not mean to be gone this long! (Kitchen is still not done...) I’ll have something here soon!
Strength lies not in flesh and bone.

Offline cwwriter

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Re: Man Down
« Reply #23 on: January 11, 2018, 15:35:14 CST »
I'm enjoying this and intrigued so far. :) I'm happy with whatever POV you think suits the material!

Offline E.D.

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Re: Man Down
« Reply #24 on: January 11, 2018, 18:20:12 CST »
Thanks CW! I should have a new chapter or two ready this weekend!
Strength lies not in flesh and bone.

Offline cwwriter

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Re: Man Down
« Reply #25 on: January 11, 2018, 19:46:44 CST »
Awesome. :)

Offline Ebonyswanne

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Re: Man Down
« Reply #26 on: January 16, 2018, 00:37:31 CST »
I tend like different views. But its what suits the story.
Learn  the rules like a pro, and break them like an artist- Picasso