Riding the lift down to the tunnel levels, I was struggling to get close to Thompson and fit the new gear into the field jacket.
Reaching Him I asked “You have any experience at this kind of stuff”?
“No” He replied “The will and the means Yes but, training and experience NO”
“Honest at least. Here look at the 3D for the cryo banks. There are essentially two entrances; the front and back doors if you will. The back door here is the closest and easiest to defend. If you were to get there first and hole up at this junction; you could hold off all twenty goons much less the five or less you are going see.”
“I think you are right, they sure could not be behind us. Where are you going?”
“Right here”, I said pointing at the front door complex. “It’s also where the power, air and network enter the facility. I think that will be the main push and where we need me and Marina.” “Hold your end is all we can ask! As a matter of fact, let me try something!”
Raising my voice where I could be heard over the low babble; “Anybody here got any military or police background?” Two middle aged persons raised their hands “Cop” said the female, “Grunt” said the male.
“Well Thompson, there’s your two Fire Team Leaders. You get the 1-step training program as a Squad Leader. Take one extra person from my group so you are balanced. After all I have the Blonde Lady.”
I came back to our group and showed them the 3D. “Here’s where we are going. First we have to run to this intersection here. If we can fort up there we can not be flanked. Then we can send the action team up to the actual entrance.” “Any questions?”
“Yeah, who is the action team?” Spoke up one slightly quavering voice. At least one was going to decide today, Sheep or Sheepdog!
I gestured at Mariana and said “Us”.
Sotto Voice from Mariana, “It’s hunting time, Shooter.” “Damn straight, Spotter”
I was surprised that our group kept up so well. Prejudice Andy, anybody who willingly came on this little jaunt was not a couch potato. One guy even asked on the trot, “Why won’t they just let us leave, look how much they are wasting trying to stop us from just leaving?”
“Because, if we make it someone else has hope they can do it too. The first thing a dictatorship has got to overcome is your arms. The second is your hope.”
“Well, then Damn Them Sir!”
“With any kind of luck we will do just that. But, if any of them surrender; The Code of Honor applies. They live!”
“Do they necessarily have to be in 100% condition?”
“Don’t remember that being mentioned!”
We pulled up at the choke point intersection. “Ok, you with the questions. You are now in charge. You hold both legs of a T-intersection, the only way they can flank us is to come up the long leg. Stop them!”
Spotter and I drug the sub-voc microphones up on our necks and tightened them up. “Test up” from somewhere down in her throat. “5 by” from down in mine.
We moved towards the entrance complex only to freeze as the sound of gunfire erupted from at least three places in the corridors. “Well, sneaky is out Spotter.”
“Never thought we would get here fast enough anyway Shooter”
As we moved down our respective sides of the corridor, we heard gunfire behind us; a short vicious explosion of sound from multiple hand guns. “Sounds like the back door stays closed Shooter.” “Yeah, I just hope it did not cost them too much!”
Suddenly in my ear, “Blacksuits four in all, two on either side.”
I merely looked over and pantomimed pulled down the fast reactions lenses as I grated in my throat “Line Marines and a Pursuit Cruiser only carries four.” I motioned with my left hand with the Flashbang, and watched as her hand and arm pumped in time with mine. One, two, three, four and release.
Two seconds later the world went white. Had it not been for the fast reacts we would have been as blind as our targets.
Lunging around the corner I picked up the two on my side and gave them two fast head shots. Swing towards the other side I acquired the standing one just in time to see him disappear in a hammer I could never have heard.
Waiting the 90 seconds it took for our earpieces to relax, we began to hear the 1MC hollering for SITREPS. I opened up my wristcomp and reported. “Stuart here Capt. Cryo secured.” Staring at the faces of Thompson and question man coming out of the cryo section and our back track.
“Now, can we finally get out of this system.”
Looking at Thompson, “How many did you get?”
“Two, both in mottled suits!”
“Question Guy, how many?”
“One, mottled suit”
“Damn that makes seven here and all their Fleets.” Into the wristcomp, “Capt., Stuart here, any chance we can go for one of the docked Cruisers. They gotta be stocked for outer patrol, cause they sure did not beat us here from Earth.” “To All, if it’s a go any takers?”
To Be Continued