SNOW KINGDOM CHAPTER SEVENTEEN PART ONE
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.
So far: Colonel Tasca and Master Sergeant Maseru are at the second DBS site. They see the Scavenger lines ahead and behind their position slowly moving towards them only to stop just over one-hundred meters from their position.
WORDS PART ONE: 1009
“Colonel, the line ahead has stopped, distance one hundred and thirty meters from our position. The line behind has stopped as well, distance one hundred and forty meters. I see no movement to flank us from either line, sir.”
“Trust me, Sergeant, they will once they feel they’re close enough. What’s the head count?”
“Ahead, I make twenty-two Scavs, from behind, another twenty-three, a total of forty-five Scavs.” Maseru grinned. “Just a little over twenty-to-one odds, Colonel. Shit, we’ve got them right where we want them. The question is when will they begin their attack?”
Tasca looked at the line of Scavs behind them. “I figure, when both lines move forward, they’ll stop about forty meters from us; the effective range of their rifles. If memory serves, once they’ve reached it, they’ll start flanking us from both sides. Once they’re in position, they’ll come at us from every angle.”
“Any more good news you care to share, Colonel? Nothing like cheering me up.”
Tasca grinned. Despite the new supplies, he knew the severity of the situation. They would have to adapt and overcome the unfolding situation if they were to survive the encounter. “No, not at the moment, Sergeant. Set the thopter’s altitude to five-hundred meters, omega search pattern. Check to see if there are any Scavs above us on either side. If negative, maintain focus on both lines while I continue removing our supplies.”
“Yes, sir. Consider it done. All right my beauty, let’s make the changes. There, that does it. Okay, what do we see above us. Humph, good, not one damned Scav on top of either wall. Good news, Colonel, there’s nothing above us.”
Tasca spat to one side. “It looks like it’s one thing we don’t have to worry about. Take your teledars and do a visual search of both lines. Let me know what’s happening.”
“Yes, sir.” I’ll start with what’s ahead of us.”
“Make it so.”
Maseru turned and moved to the front of the outcropping. “All right let’s check things out.” He raised the teledars to his eyes and intently studied the Scav line in front of him. “Hmmn, that’s damned odd, they still show no signs of movement. Christ, they’re just standing and talking to one another. This doesn’t track. They should be screaming at us, preparing to advance. Gotta check the line behind us.” He moved quickly to the other side of the outcropping, and found, to his growing confusion, the Scavs talking without any signs of movement. “Shit, something’s not right. Let’s see what the Colonel thinks.” He gave the line one last look, then made for Tasca who was removing supplies from the container.
“Colonel, both lines are stationary and what’s damned odd is they’re standing and talking to one another, instead screaming for our heads. What the hell give, sir?”
“I’d say they’re discussing how best to attack our position. There’s no hurry to do so at this moment. They know they’ve got us boxed in and outnumbered. Once they decide to attack, you’d wish they’d still been talking to one another. Remember the noises they made as we made our way up the gorge, well, when they come at us, it will seem like a whisper. No doubts will remain how much they want to kill us.”
“So, we just wait until the move on us, Colonel?”
“No, not in the true sense of the word. I want you to take twenty-five thermals from pile behind me and set them in a Zeta pattern around the perimeter with a two-meter proximity fuse. This should neutralize any threat from our flanks, giving us time to concentrate on the centers of both lines. Once you’re done with the thermals, continue to monitor the thopter’s images. If I’m right, once there done talking, they’ll move as one towards us. You know what to expect once they’ve stopped?”
“Yes, sir. They’ll begin flanking maneuvers.”
“Yes. Once there’re in position, the center of both lines will give the command to attack. If I’m right, they’ll try and draw our fire to one side as the other attacks. Once we’ve engaged both sides, the center lines will come at us. All right, Sergeant, set the thermals.”
“Won’t that attract attention to what we’re doing, sir?”
“They may be curious at first, but at that distance, and if I know their mindset, they won’t give it a second thought and why should they? They know they hold all the cards. All right, Sergeant, set them.”
Without another word between them, Tasca continued to remove the supplies while Maseru set the thermals, then returned to the outcropping to study the thopter’s scans.
Five long minutes had passed and still there was no sign of movement from either Scav line. Maseru continued to monitor both scanners until he saw Tasca had finished removing the last of their supplies.
“I don’t get it, sir. They’re still talking. They should have reached a decision by now.”
“I don’t have an answer to that, Sergeant, but we need to discuss the new supplies before they attack. Bring the scanners with you.”
“Yes, sir.” Maseru climbed down from the outcropping and walked toward Tasca, stopping when he saw what had been only military rumor and hear-say. “Damn, is that what I think it is?”
“Yes, Sergeant. Tech finally developed the electromagnetic light-weight body armor you’ve heard about. They’ve perfected the prototypes to where it adds only two additional pounds to our load.”
Maseru shook his head and grinned. “Christ, sir, I hate that word. All it means is it’s the first time it’ll be used under battlefield conditions. I know what you’re going to say. Intel has tested it to the limit . . . and all tests were positive.”
“A perceptive assessment, Sergeant. The magnetic field is designed to repel any metal projectiles even at close range. Nothing will penetrate the armor. Any contact will sting like hell, but that’s it. The only way to kill us would be a head shot.
© 2017, Raymond Tobaygo. All rights reserved.
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