THE SNOW KINGDOM CHAPTER FIFTEEN PART THREE
SNOW KINGDOM SYNOPSIS: Two soldiers from the United Northern Alliance, Colonel Castille Tasca and Master Sergeant Rambika Maseru, have undertaken a clandestine mission deep into Snow Kingdom territory to test a new agent designed to kill coca plants the source of the Snow Kingdom’s cocaine, the very foundation of its power and wealth.
I APOLOGIZE FOR THE LENGTH — I NORMALLY LIKE TO KEEP IT BETWEEN SEVEN HUNDRED TO NINE HUNDRED WORDS.
WORDS PART THREE: 1116
FROM PART TWO
“Colonel, the thopter’s shows both lines have stopped, but I’m seeing movement behind each one. Based on the distance to the lines, I’d say we’ve about seven to eight minutes before the Scavs link, Sir.”
“Let me know once they’ve joined forces. I’ll need numbers from each line.”
“Yes, Sir, exact numbers.”
Placing the brown disc in his mouth until it was coated with saliva, he cupped his right hand and let the disc drop onto it. Coded only to his or Maseru’s DNA, and activated by body heat and salvia, the disc’s micro energizer activated, giving him the new orders. Its purpose finished, the disc began to dissolve. “I don’t believe it,” Tasca muttered.
“Believe what, Sir?”
WORDS PART THREE: 1116
“The container not only has our supplies, but the agents as well.”
“But. I . . .”
“So, did I, Sergeant,” Tasca interrupted, trying to understand the logic behind the orders. “I thought the orders would lead us to the final DBS, where we’d disperse the agent and wait for extraction. Command told me the agent requires an elevation over two-thousand meters with prevailing east winds to carry it over the hydroponic complex and into its ventilation system. Apparently, they decided last DBS site might be compromised, which explains why the vials are part of our supplies. What I don’t understand is why they didn’t give us an alternative launch site, unless there’s more orders at the bottom of the container.”
“I hope there is, Colonel, but I think you should start unloading the supplies. We don’t have any time to spare. For now, the situation is static, but how much longer it remains this way, I don’t know.”
“None towards our position. The Scavs approaching both lines from behind are approximately seven and six hundred and seventy-meters out, Sir.”
“My gut tells me, once they’ve joined forces, they’ll move on us until we’re in range of their weapons, then wait until the line behind check our supplies.”
“How will we defend ourselves if they decide to attack all at once, Sir? They could easily pin us down with suppressing fire.”
“Your concern is noted, Sergeant. With the ordinance Command’s packed in container, we’ll have a few surprises for the them.” Tasca smiled. “Trust, me, they’ll never know what hit them. They won’t have the opportunity for suppressing fire.”
“I love your confidence, I really do, but those surprises better be pretty Goddamned good if we’re to exit the gorge in one piece.”
“Trust me, Sergeant, they are. All right, I’ll unload the supplies. Still no movement on the lines, Sergeant?”
“Yes, Sir, no movement except for the Scavs closing in behind them. I’m curious to see what type of ordinance they’re carrying.”
“I think you’ll find the type of weapon I described earlier.”
“Maybe, Sir. But that was twenty-five years ago.”
“Yes, it was, but despite that, it doesn’t track. There’s no logical reason why the Kingdom would provide the Scavs with sophisticated weapons. They’d want to maintain their advantage over them. I think all you’ll see will be vintage rifles, but if it will satisfy your curiosity, then do it.”
“Yes, Sir, it will.” Kneeling on one knee he adjusted the teledar’s range. “I’ve a visual lock on three Scavs. Hmmn, I’ll be damned, you’re right. All I see are lead-projectile rifles. I’m focusing on one Scav who’s meters in front of the line. The way he’s gesturing towards it, he could be a leader. Now if the son-of-a-bitch would only turn around so I can get a better look.”
“Stay focused on him and tell me what you see once he faces us. If he’s a leader, and we kill him first, it will stop their attack until they’ve picked a new one.”
“He’s turning, Colonel. Goddamn . . . they don’t come any uglier.”
Well under two meters in height, the Scav’s head was wrapped in cloth in such a manner it covered his forehead. His large, deep-set, black eyes gave the impression of one who’d killed many times before, his thick nose, set above a mouth surrounded by a scraggily beard, completing his menacing presence. He wore a long, loose shirt and pants with a necklace of human ears lying against a vest of human bones. Maseru spat to one side and rubbed the back of his hand across his lips. “Colonel, are the Worlar cannibals like the T’Ming?”
Yes, they are. It’s one of their more endearing qualities. What clued you in? Was it the vest of human bones or neckless of dried human ears?
Tasca smiled. “Then you’ve seen the Scav leader. We’ll target him once he’s in range.”
“I can’t wait to kill him and all his bastards.” Maseru’s anger smoldered within. Ever since the day he was rescued from the Scavs, he’d promised himself to kill as many as he could, wherever he could, that he’d bring Hell down upon their heads.
“I know you do, Sergeant. I don’t want any stupid heroics. Is that understood?”
“Understood, Colonel, I won’t. You know how much I hate them for what they did to me and my family. You have my word, I won’t do anything to jeopardize the mission, but I’ll be Goddamned if I’m going to leave the gorge with any Scavs still alive.”
“Of that I have no doubt, Sergeant.” For Maseru to give him his word, Tasca knew he would control his rage so it wouldn’t interfere with his decisions. He needed him to be cognizant of the unfolding situation, to react, not from impulse, but from in a manner befitting an Alliance Warrior. “Are the lines moving forward, Sergeant?”
“No, not yet. They’re still waiting for the remaining Scavs to catch up.”
“Distance to both lines?”
“Ahead, about three-hundred and ninety meters. Behind, four-hundred and ten meters, Sir.”
“Good, we still have time. Once they’ve linked they’ll stop to finalize their attack plan. If they haven’t changed their strategy, it should take several minutes.”
Maseru, his eyes on the thopter’s feedback, mumbled obscenities at the Scavs.
Tasca started to remove the supplies, carefully leaning the new ordinance against the side of the container. “Well, it looks like we’ve enough food and water to last us for a while.”
“Good to hear, Sir. Have you found the stims? I really need one. I’m so damned tired.”
“Yes, I’ve got them. Here catch. I want you to inject one now while I do the same. The stims should keep us going for another twelve hours, enough for us to find a suitable place, to sleep a few hours after we exit the gorge. Once you’ve injected the stim, secure it and the remaining ones inside your shoulder pocket.”
“Remember, don’t use another one until you’ve pasted the twelve-hour mark. If you do, you’ll experience one hell of a migraine, which could easily fuck up the mission and compromise our lives.” Tasca knew the stims were a mixed blessing. Both had eight, more than enough to complete the mission, but he would only use them as a last resort. “All right, Sergeant, continue monitoring the Scavs’ approach. Let me know when both lines have linked along with their numbers. Once I’m finished with the container, we’ll set up a defensive perimeter. Unless I’ve missed my guess, the new ordinance Command gave us should be more than enough to repel any attack.”
© 2017, Raymond Tobaygo. All rights reserved.
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