Rico nodded to himself as he received Ally’s message. The Warhawk swiveled around and faced the rest of his squad and crossed its arms. “Change a’ plans, boys. We’re stickin’ here an’ waitin’ for Delta to meet up with us. Once they get to us, we’re movin’ in on some of these reports I’m getting’ from teams farther on up. So plant a seat and try not to make a ruckus ‘till the Delta boys get here.”
"Who ordered that charade...." Kagura sighed, standing nearby and shaking her head and looked around watching the fishes swim by for a moment.
Deon responded with a more relaxed sounding "Rightyo then..." Before leaning back against a taller boulder. One eye on the wildlife, the other though stayed on his scanner.
Autumn's Warhawk stretched its armored arms as it stood waiting. "OOh, more people are gonna party with us, Sergeant? The more the merrier!"
"Oh boy. More meat for the grinders." Ian broadcast the comment to the squad, a smirk on his face.
“Yeah yeah, just put on a smile an’ keep the comments to yourself. They won’t be takin’ any a’ my squad’s thunder, that’s for sure.” Rico added in as he idly punted a pebble on the salty sea floor.
"What little thunder there is." Kagura chortled to Rico.
"Aww. If I keep it in too long I might 'splode!" Autumn whined teasingly before her Warhawk snapped into a salute. "Aye Aye, Sergeant! I'll try to be a good girl and if I'm too bad, you can spank me.. Just kidding."
"Shut the hell up, Soldier." Ian barked to Kagura over the comm.
"Bite me big boy." Kagura yawned. "I bet you haven't even scored a kill yet."
Ian pointed his rifle towards a red corpse scored with four large holes. "The hell I haven't."
Kagura points her gun to the broken red near the upturned turbine bike and the red with holes in it's head. "1-uped. I got two."
Ian responded by pointing the canister rifle at Kagura's chest. "Maybe I'll get another one."
"Yeah? And, technically an' shit, ALL of YOUR kills belong to ME, seein' as I lead Epsilon," Rico interjected between the two. "Now will you two quit with the bitchin'? Keep your heads in the fight, or you'll lose 'em pretty damn fast."
Ian grumbled into his mic and turned away, folding his arms, the canister rifle still in his right hand.
"I hate that man." She said. "Should've shot him earlier." Kagura muttered to herself after cutting her mic for a moment.
"Deltas, we're linking up with Epsilon." Stromm said, looking over his squad. "Make an equipment check, and return all sensors to passive before we dust-off."
Adrian groaned. "Can't the brass decide what they want us do for more than twenty minutes?" He looked over his armor. It was in decent condition, and he quickly stood at attention.
Uso replied quickly, "done."
"Yes sir." Gran said as he headed towards the ping of Epsilon squad.
"Alright, Deltas, on me! Loose formation!" Stromm spin his hand around and then pointed in the direction of the Epsilons. He made sure that they had the same beacon Ally had given him, and then jumped off, using his tractor field to bounce him toward the Epsilons.
Adrian engaged his gravitic drive, pulling forwards after the sergeant. "On our ways, sir."
Uso followed along, lagging behind the group just a little bit.
"Epsilon lead, this is Delta lead, we're en route to your position, ETA: 4 minutes." Stromm relayed to Rico.
"Yeah, hurry it up baby...some of us are on a schedule here. It's about north-northwest a' where ya are now. Keep on movin', you'll pick us up in a moment." Rico replied to Stromm through the static-filled channel.
A few moments later, Delta neared the fringe of the Epsilon Squad. They would appear on each others sensors, very blurry, static-filled at first, but cleared gradually as they moved in closer.
Stromm gave himself one final push with his Tractor Field and landed a few meters away from Epsilons position. "Morning, Epsilon Lead." Stromm called to Rico.
Kagura would simply shift around uncomfortably. "I feel like I've been in a bath for too long, this environments is stiffiling and slightly claustrophobic." She sighed.
Adrian's armor impacted the sand giving off a large puff of sand. He stomped forward, watching the the other squad. He frowned at them behind his helmet. Only one I know is Rico, and he's not exactly my friend...
Autumn's Warhawk stood waiting patiently as she toyed with her canister rifle. "This should be interesting. If we're being buddied up, they're probably expecting us to get some stronger resistance than we saw here."
Deon snapped a small salute as Stromm approached, though he also said to Autumn. "Just hope there's enough targets to go around. Though I could do without them right now, one good depth charge would make this a short trip for all involved."
"So are we going to go shoot something?" Uso asked over the all hands channel as she arrived at the meeting point for the two squads.
"You didn't fight the immortal hunk of nepleslian." Kagura muttered. "Blew a hole in the guy's gut and took his leg off and he kept coming." She said and turned to Uso, already irritated, resisting the urge to shoot her.
As Delta came into visual view, Rico made a note of each of their unique signatures, trying to recognize any names on the list. There were a few new ones…a few people he’d only recently met…and then there was Adrian…and then… “GRAN!” Rico laughed with delight as he engaged his thrusters and hurdled himself towards the technical sentry, completely ignoring the greeting sent to him by Delta’s leader. Rico only stopping in front of Gran long enough to slap an armored hand against the chest of the smaller armor. “How’s the water treatin’ ya, baby?” Rico grinned as he casually engaged in a little talk with his buddy.
"Aaaaaaaaand... no friends." Adrian sighed, his mic off. The tall medic slouched over to a big rock and took a seat, checking over his rifle once more and hoping for a reply from A-2.
Stromm growled behind the cover of his Nerimian mask as he was completely ignored and unrecognized by the other Sergeant. Such disrespect... Stromm grunted and then looked to the rest of Epsilon. He snapped a salute at Deon in response to the Soldier's salute.
Gran tromped along with Delta into midst of Epsilon. He didn't notice Rico until he landed right in front of him, his vision and thoughts were focused on the box Stromm had handed him. His armor lurched slightly as Rico slapped him. "Guh!" He smiled behind his armor's helmet, smacking the larger armor back. "Oh, heh, pretty well actually. We had some weird stuff though... How about you?"
"Morning! Positive attitudes! We kicked ass! Hello again, Gran, Adrian and... Miss Lady person!" Autumn said brightly into the comm. She couldn't remember the name of Delta's Sergeant or the odd woman that had got into a fight with Kagura earlier. "And hello to you too, Sergeant of Delta.."
Kagura simply waved to them with a sigh.
Adrian looked up from his massive weapon and gave quick wave to Autumn before dumping his head down again.
"Morning, Wilde." Stromm replied in a standard tone.
“Ho oh, shit baby! We had a blast…buncha Reds ridin’ on big turbines. Killed ‘em up right fast, though. Nothin’ Rico can’t handle, now that I got me a team a’ lackeys.” Rico said with a chortle through the broad communication channel, slapping him again on the back as he waved a hand at his Epsilon Squad. “So, hey, I never got ‘round to askin’ ya how your night with Jen went. Did she do the foot thing? Man, she’s always doin’ that foot thing with the new kids…” Rico’s voice trailed off, leaving it up to Gran to decide whether or not he was joking.
"Are we all here yet?" Kagura wondered as she looked over her radar to see the signatures.
"In one sense yes...though." Deon looked over to a rather excitable Rico, "I'm not terribly sure about us being all here in others." Foot thing?
"Turbines? God what the hell are these crazy Reds gonna throw at us next?" Gran shouldered Rico's next slap easier. His face blushed a little and he grinned behind the mask. "Uhh..." He looked down at his hand and seemed to be counting on his fingers, mumbling softly. "First... uhh.. then we... after that... umm..." He looked up at Rico, his grin seemed to even penetrate the thick metal mask of the armor.
"They tried to kill us with zombies!" Adrian yelled over the comm to Rico and Gran from his spot on the rock.
With that, Kagura's warhawk hovered up on its jump jets and began to move away from the group to see what was ahead of them. Using her sensors to see as far as she could, thinking their killing time was giving the enemy time to study them from afar and prepare. "Come on you idiots. The longer you chat like old bitches in a coffeehouse the longer they have to prepare a nice welcoming party for us." she snarled at them.
"Oh my- DAMN IT! COULD SHE BE ANY FUCKING STUPIDER?!" Ian quickly had his rifle trained on Kagura's back. "Get the fuck back here before I shoot you down, bitch."
Autumn sighed, she wondered how much friendly fire was gonna claim their unit. "Hold on, Kagura! We need to find out what our orders are before proceeding."
"Look Ian, SHUT THE FUCK UP! You all are sitting around like ducks in a row begging to get shot yourselves. We're here to take them out, not sit here and wait for them to take us out!" She snarled at him. "I hate you, you hate me but let's at least just get this shit over and done with then we can shoot at each other over a beer."
"Hey Gran..." Piped up Adrian over a private comm channel. "You have that little thingy that shuts down armors, right?" He looked at the armor moving away into the distance and the Cadet aiming a big rifle at it. "Why don't you shut down that Kagura chick's armor and avoid us a mess?"
"Annoying girl is right, I'd like to get moving before someone comes across us."Uso said.
“Aaaahhhh ha! I fuckin’ knew it!” Rico jabbed an elbow slyly into Gran as he continued to stutter through his speech. “What’d I tell ya, huh baby? My lessons never fail. You’ll be rollin’ in girls like that the rest a’ your…”
It was at this point he overheard Ian’s little outrage. And then Kagura’s outrage. Rico sighed loudly through his helmet, patting Gran on the shoulder and moving up towards the front of his own squad.
“Both of ya, shut the fuck up already! Sergeant,” Rico pointed towards Stromm. “You an’ your boys ready? You got the same reports I did, right? Big enemy entrenchment ‘bout two sectors ahead a’ us, right?”
"I'd like to cover one thing first, before we go. Sanroma." Stromm barked.
Rico stayed silent for a moment, acknowledging Stromm’s request.
"We need ask you if you've encountered any Red Pilots with a device like the one on Keat's person." Stromm gave a bow/nod in Gran's direction.
Rico turned to Gran, a quizzical expression strewn across his brow.
Deon looked from the angry exchange right towards Gran at this point. The marine happy to have any offered distractions, "Oooh the red's packing more nifty gadgets besides the turbines?"
Kagura would ignore Uso, cutting off her mic to listen to anything that slut might say and turned away from them. But she didn't go any further, at the moment, hating every single one of them for being so bound to orders. At least the pirates used to know exactly what they had to do and didn't wait for orders and die doing so. I'd rather be with them now than these stupid idiots. And the McCain, argh...I swear next time I have a chance I really am going to shoot him.. She thought to herself as she waited in silence.
"Uhhh... Here." Gran held out the strange box to Rico so he could see it. Bits of the blue nanites still clung to the outsides.
“Uh…nope.” Rico shot a few scans over the box…a few garbled text strings appeared, technical things that Rico would never hope, nor want, to understand. “What’s the deal with this thing?”
Autumn kept an eye on her HUD in case someone other than the sharks decided to crash the party. "Zombies? I'm pretty sure our targets are pretty dead."
"No foolin'. Zombie, eh?" Rico had to strain to stifle a snorting giggle at the absurdity of the explanation. He didn't do that well holding it in, though.
"You think I'm fucking with you, don't you." A rather thick amount of offense was in Stromm's voice.
Gran looked down at the box and then up to Rico. "Yeah... I was really freakin weird."
"What??" At this point curiosity won over combat, and Deon gave a quick bounce closer to Gran. The box and nanites scanned over as well. "Seriously? Wow weird doesn't even come close."
"You don't sound like the joking type, Delta Sergeant," Autumn offered helpfully.
"Naw, never! I'm sure it was a fuckin' zombie flick an' everything!" Rico said, doing his best to retain his composure. "Did they moan for brains, too? Did ya have to pull out your shotty?"
Adrian groaned. "Alright, cool, let Ian turn the weird bitch into a bloody mess." Adrian shrugged. He shot a glare at Rico when he began laughing about the 'zombies.' Stupid asshole. He didn't have to do shit.
An audible growl could be heard over the combined squad communication. Stromm's stance flared for a moment, "Sanroma, these little pieces shit dropped from the Sub Pen, we loaded full of fucking shells. What did they do? They got the fuck back up, leaking red and blue all over the god damn place. With enough strength to rip your fucking armor off, trust me, here and now, Sanroma. This isn't a fucking Zombie flick, where the target his 'brain's. It's 'rip you the fuck apart'." Stromm finished his statement with another growl.
Rico shrugged off Gran’s attempt to stem the growing argument. “What, you let ‘em get that close? You know, guns are for shootin’ things from far away…and don’t tell me some shitty Dark Demon’s caught up with ya in those armors,” Rico flung an outstretched finger at the rest of Delta Squad. “You can’t fuckin’ tell me that you expect me to let you feed me this bullshit while I just smile with my mouth open. You got anythin’ else besides a fuckin’ box and your personal opinion?”
"Say, Gran, did you happen to capture a feed of the ambush?" Stromm grunted in Gran's direction.
Gran looked through his armor's computer for a second. "Uhh... The armors automatically capture the tactical data... It shows enemy location and type. You can see each of the DD's have an anomalous signature on them, that's the boxes." He opened the file to anyone of either squad who wanted to check it out.
"Sergeant Rico, do you we rally have the time to contest the validity of Zombieness? I think it might actually be a good idea to start moving to the objective. We can argue about logistics of true Zombiehood later," Autumn suggested in a rather cheerful tone of voice.
By this point Deon was tuning out the argument, that box the center of his attention. "Hmm...Eh? You got a recording of it? That would certainly be....Err though Autumn does have a point. That is...finish the objective, and debate zombies...someplace where it's a bit more dry."
"Sweet cheeks has a point, fellas." Rico smirked as he waved away the argument. "Let's start our way towards the objective. Gran, send me the feed on the way. Anyone else got anythin'?" Rico waited a whole one second before speaking back up again. "Great! Let's move."
Kagura turned to her and turned her mic on. "Are we FINALLY going now?" She asked in an irate tone of voice and looked at the others.
"Good, alright then, we'll have show and tell later. Delta's form up, move out." Stromm twirled his hand in circle and formed it into a fist. "You lead, Epsilon."
"Epsilon! Form up, we're takin' point." Rico motioned for his men to take positions, and started to move towards their goal.
"Ya, let's go. Stop fighting with our allies. We gots other people to be killing," Autumn replied as she let go of Kagura's Warhawk and went back to Rico to get into position.
"Bout time I was about ot start shooting at you guys." Kagura said in a cheerful, happy tone and went to get into position, relieved to be doing SOMETHING.
"Yes sir." Gran replied to Stromm, moving into position near his sergeant. He stored the salvaged nanite box in one of his compartments, 'a' in particular
Deon couldn't resist saying, "Shotgun at the ready!" before he took up his position off to Rico's left again. Though after that he was all business again. Eyes focused back on his scanner and the area around them.