2021.10.28 12:11 therealhoagie [SPOILER] Loser of Shields vs Montes reacts to loss
2021.10.28 12:11 iknowjake Full Craigslist system
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2021.10.28 12:11 geeroc07 Montreal Allouettes - Pair of tickets - Oct 30th 2021 - $20
I have a pair of tickets for Oct 30th 2021 game vs the Roughriders.
Section: W2 , Row: 18 , Number: 8 Section: W2 , Row: 18 , Number: 7
Asking $20 for the pair.
Tickets will be transferred by email.
You need to be double vaccinated to attend.
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2021.10.28 12:11 Active-Memory9742 गंगा नदी वास्तव में कबीर परमेश्वर की देन है। गंगा नदी का जल सतलोक से ब्रह्मलोक, ब्रह्मा, विष्णु के लोकों में होते हुए शिव लोक में बने जटा कुंडली डैम में आया वहां से ओवर फ्लो होकर हिम रूप में हिमालय पर्वत पर आया और आगे पिंघल कर जल का रूप धारण कर नीचे की ओर पृथ्वी पर नदी रुप में बहने लगा।
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2021.10.28 12:11 poppychips this very stupid idea has been bouncing around in my head for weeks
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2021.10.28 12:11 bmf09598 Adam Klein... One of us! One of us!
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2021.10.28 12:11 memebyblade The Lightyear Trailer We All Wanted
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2021.10.28 12:11 JNMLaw2022 Full Firm Name or Acronym
First, let me just disclose that im a formal person by default. I wait for my boss/supervisor to set the tone of the office or environment and even then, Im still more on the formal side (im working on it lol). When writing post interview thank you emails, is it considered a little too informal or inappropriate to write the firms acronym instead of the full name? They all refer to it by acronym but im the outsider so? I know its probably a silly question but....
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2021.10.28 12:11 dipdipstoned DROPPING TOMORROOWWWWW. Biggest W. FLACKO 4 EVA❤️
2021.10.28 12:11 zawaaaarrudo What are the main differences between male and female speech patterns?
What are the noticeable differences when men and women speak? I mean what differences come from having different voices and what differences come from male/female socializations? I can see that my guy friends speak differently from my girl friends but I can't exactly point out what the differences are. I'm 2 months on T now and my voice is dropping but I want to avoid "talking like a girl".
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2021.10.28 12:11 Morrogenduath Ideal band thickness for durability?
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2021.10.28 12:11 jaspur69 am i correct here
2021.10.28 12:11 shoski13 Offered remote Admin Assistant/Data Entry position for a large, well-known company. The turnaround after the interview (through chat) was 2 days. Is this a scam?
I applied for this job on LinkedIn. I received an email from a legitimate recruiter for them (found their LinkedIn page) asking when we could set up an interview. The recruiter has a careers-companyname.com email address.
Attached was a 7-page letter signed by their "VP & Head of Global Talent & Development at [company]." It gave information about the company, what the role entailed (primary and secondary duties listed), and the equipment I would receive for this job. The letter said that once I passed my interview, I would be offered the position, and my home office location would be registered with the HR department. After which, I would begin my pretraining. In addition, they said that I would receive a bonus from the finance department for this training.
We set up the interview and did it through RingCentral. It was the most bizarre interview I have ever done, all over chat. The emails and this interview were in slightly broken English with some grammatical errors. I understand that they are a foreign company and this process might be slightly automated.
They asked if I was currently employed, why I wanted the job, how I would describe my work ethics, if I have ever worked from home before, my current typing speed, how I would prioritize a job that had little or no time to get done, how much training I would need to become a productive employee, and two other questions.
They said that if I was hired, I would be attached to an online supervisor who would endorse my training clearance. Also a lot of information about the job. They asked me to send scanned copies of my passport/birth certificate/DL and proof of address, which I did.
Two days later, they sent me an offer letter and a W4. It is very generous, but this whole process and the quick turnaround seem strange to me. I responded and asked if I could schedule a call with their hiring manager to ask a few questions, just to speak to someone.
I haven't even told my current job that I have been looking for other work, and I am currently interviewing with other companies.
Does this seem legitimate?
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2021.10.28 12:11 Franz17Zerk You should NOT put your turning signal on in a turn-only lane.
It’s redundant, and confusing in some situations. For example, if there are two right turn only lanes and you are in the second from the right, people can’t tell whether you need to get into the far right lane or you just have it on for the heck of it.
The point of a turning signal is to communicate with other drivers, be polite and intelligent just like other forms of communication.
Yes, I’m aware of the irony because many people also don’t use it when they should.
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2021.10.28 12:11 RegExrBot Funko POP! Rides: Clark Griswold With Station Wagon - Walmart Exclusive now available at Walmart
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2021.10.28 12:11 NeatBattle7805 Miruko
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2021.10.28 12:11 Kyleforshort TIL of a drink called Kalimotxo or Calimocho which consists of equal parts red wine and cola. The drink dates back to the 1920s, originating in Spain. However, the drink didn't become popular until around 1953 when Coca-Cola became readily available in Spain.
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2021.10.28 12:11 UtilizingTheta [10/28/21] 2 Shorts on TWLO and FUTU This Morning || +$1,243 profit total
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2021.10.28 12:11 Jewicer How is Copper Pearl? Worth it?
2021.10.28 12:11 z-lf So... I built a thing... (cable management is next step)
2021.10.28 12:11 random_gamer69 The primitive colors have been messed up, idk what happened but the Guided missile was not supposed to be grey! (Its colors were set to Forest green before)
2021.10.28 12:11 throwaway612147 How To Get Medical Insurance After Surrogacy Ends
We live in FL. My wife is a new surrogate. As part of the surrogacy contract, the intended parents must buy her health insurance for the duration of the surrogacy, which they plan to do through the ACA. My question / concern is, what do we do about her insurance after the surrogacy ends?
Is losing health insurance that was provided by a surrogacy contract considered a qualifying event that would allow me to add her to my work plan at that time?
If not, I suppose I have to put her on my plan for the entire year. I don't like that option though for two reasons. One, that's an extra $600 / month or so for something that we shouldn't need. Two, I don't like the idea of her having overlapping insurance plans fighting over jurisdiction, finger-pointing for bill paying, etc.
I know about short-term health plans that we could use to get us through the rest of the year, but we've already been on them for a while now due to the expense of my job's plan, and I don't like the idea of pushing our luck any further, especially with the potential for post-pregnancy complications and most short-term plans not covering anything related to pregnancy, even if it's not surrogate related.
We could continue to pay the ACA ourselves for the remainder of the year, but that will probably be super expensive because I'm pretty sure the intended parents are going for a more full-coverage plan considering the circumstances.
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2021.10.28 12:11 Redsmann Traveling Wilburys - End of the Line (Extended Version)
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2021.10.28 12:11 Sonnyjimmy Ascent - a short story. A day in the typical soldier's life at the point C meatgrinder fight
Ascent Her hand wouldn't stop trembling. And it wasn't just the searing cold of the Amerishan winter. Luckily, grouped up ahead at the cavern entrance, the squad couldn’t see anything. She hid it in her pocket.
Something shimmered ahead.
'Kasy, you can't let Cap see that.'
She jumped. Ernst was perched on the sheer rock face above. Smiling, the slim infiltrator skipped down the slope. He brought his face just a little too close in for comfort.
‘Woh there… What- what you want?’ she stuttered, trying to regain her composure.
Glancing side to side to check if anyone was in earshot, he whispered 'You know I’m off that stuff now, Kasy.’
‘Yeah, that ‘old-time religion’ enough for you now, right?’ she smirked.
He smiled warmly ‘It’s something better. Something higher than, this, you know? You should try it.’
‘Nope, praying’s not for me. Never helped.’ She shook her head
‘And you should be careful too, or Cap’ll start saying you’re a Vanu lover.’
‘It’s not the same religion.’
‘You think anyone cares to tell the difference?’ she laughed.
Suddenly he grabbed her hand.
‘Get off me, Ernst!’ pulling away.
He backed off.
‘OK, OK. Sorry. But really, it's becoming obvious, Kasy.’ He said in a low voice
‘That med addiction story is wearing thin. You know Cap will get you retired when he realises what those shakes really are?'
'What if I want to be retired, Ernst. I can’t take this much longer…'
His brown eyes gazed at her, full of compassion. He was older than her, but somehow, he kept an air of youthful innocence.
‘It won’t be like before, Kasy. They won’t let you back home. You’ll just be… locked up.’
‘Yeah, I know…’ She took a long breath, her heart sinking as distant memories of a peaceful place flashed through her mind.
‘…Not like there’s anything left of ‘home’ anyway. But what choice do I have?’
'Keep your chin up, soldier.’ Ernst gave a reassuring squeeze of her shoulder
‘I’ve got a plan to get us out, to somewhere better. You and me together, I promise you.'
He winked, and Kasy blushed.
‘You keep saying that – ‘
But he had already scampered off to speak with Cap.
‘When, Ernst? How?’ she shouted after him.
Ernst always had a new, crazy plan to get out of the front lines, but they never came to anything. At least they distracted her from reality for a little while. That, and regular hits from the stims.
Her hand had been shaking day and night for weeks now. She wasn’t naïve - this was serious. No doubt an early sign of respawn sickness. The frequent migraines, memory loss and nightmares just confirmed it. Some soldiers never got it, others, like her, got it quick. Unlucky Kasy, as usual.
Nobody understood why - or how any of the nanites, respawning, other ‘magic’ that the Vanu race left behind actually worked. Not even the Nanite Systems reps who sold the stuff. But regardless of why or how – she'd seen this happen before with other vets, and she knew that in a few thousand more respawns she would be lost. The only way to stop the inexorable decline was to sell yourself to the NSO and become one of those mechanical weirdos. If she didn't do that, she'd likely end up in one of those asylums off-continent.
'At least locked up, I can’t be blown to hell every other day' she smiled grimly to herself.
If she was lucky. If resources were tight then she would be despawned completely, effectively dead, never to be heard from again. Her fate would be in the hands of some Suit thousands of miles away.
‘How depressing’ she muttered. Checking that no one was watching, she injected another stim into her arm. Her hand’s movement softened to a barely noticeable tremor. That barely got her back to neutral, but better than nothing. She went to top up on supplies from the platoon store.
The floodlights in the cavern squealed then snapped off with a loud crack. Solitary shouts gathered into a raucous clamour across the emptiness of the C point cavern, along with the increasing crackle of radio chatter. The backup generators hummed into life and light slowly returned.
'Lis’n up!' barked the wavering voice of the old Captain, his bald, white-eyed face plagued with wrinkles 'We been back capped.'
The squad groaned collectively.
'Tha's right,' The Captain finally started again 'no spawns out ‘til command can get their head out of their ass and the Breach outfits retake Raven Landing.'
Kasy gulped – this was bad. Without a secure connection to another Conglomerate base, their respawn data, including anything classified you had in your brain, could be fished out of the ether by the surrounding enemy forces as it transmitted out. NC command disallowed redeploys in all but the most exceptional circumstances. And their outfit wasn’t worth anything to NC command. Instead, if they died here, their souls would be trapped at the Ascent, hidden deep underground in secure storage nobody knew how to find, until a secure connection was re-established, who knew when.
They had all recounted 100 times to the newbies that old scare story of the Esamiran scout corps, who lost behind after a the Terran Republic captured the entire continent, spend three years in deep storage at Saerro Listening Post. When the big push back finally came, the New Conglomerate retook the base – but their minds had pretty much disintegrated.
There was an agonising pause as it seemed Cap lost himself, woke up, and tried to remember where he was.
'With the number of Cultists festerin' down there, we could be on our own for hours. And have no doubt some of them’re on their way here right now. Ernst - yer on scout duty.'
'Yessir.' and Ernst scampered out of the caves into the Amerishan twilight.
'The rest of yer...' The captain turned his one eye back on them 'Count yer clips 'cos that's all we've got for the foreseeable. Saz, Kasy - yer med tools gonna be runnin' red hot. I'm gunna be over here for co-ordinatin' you all, right?'
'Yessir!' they chorused.
‘Sir, does this mean they can stag us?’ Arcteryx shouted, joint champion marksmen in the thousand-strong Oshur Assault Outfit.
‘What was that soldier? I can’t hear you good?’
‘I mean, they can jail us? We can’t redeploy, so they can just haul us in, right?’
Cap began to laugh.
‘Hurh hurh. I expec’ you all to eat yer own grenade before that happens.’
The Vanu Sovereignty took sick pleasure in hunting soldiers who could no longer redeploy. They experimented their new tech on the poor captives... The stuff of horror and legend. Worse than true death.
‘Anyway,’ Cap continued ‘git ready, we gotta hold this place no matter what.’
Cap limped into the darkness, out of sight, both hands stuck in his pockets.
'Oh yes, coordinating from the back...' Saz, the second squad medic, chuckled bitterly.
One by one, each member of the squad approached Kasy and ordered their dose of ‘special’ stims. Business was best just before the hard fights. It was the only thing keeping them level in this madness (her included), so Kasy didn’t feel bad about dealing. All of this was officially illegal under New Conglomerate regulations of course, Their superiors preferred to turn a blind eye provided they kept their performance up.
First came the two heavies, Arcteryx and his twin Alyx. After snorting their stims they took the point, planting their MGR-L1 light machine guns on either side of the rock face. Barnes, placing his stims alongside his never-ending supply of contraband cigars, swung his MANA gun emplacement back and forth at shadows glancing of the rocks.
Gail, the squad’s rookie pocket engineer came next, and after his hit intensified his endless nervous chatter, while hastily welding extra armour plating to a MAX suit. This hulking armoured suit operative needed at least five stim hits to feel anything. He called himself Max – he could have chosen any name for himself but for was either too stupid or devoid of imagination to come up with something different. He barely ever spoke so Kasy didn’t know for sure. The two medics, Saz and Kasy, rounded out the small squad. Their sole job was to keep everyone alive or revived. They would be busy – east side of Ascent C point cavern was always a hellish meatgrinder of a fight.
Last in line, Saz stumbled up to her.
‘Now, what you got for me today?!’ Wide-eyed, he scrabbled for a handful of stim kits from Kasy’s side pack and walked off without even a thank you.
‘You’re welcome?’ Kasy snapped.
The distant rumble became impossible to ignore. The rock started to shake and echo with loud clangs. Whoever was coming, there were a lot of them. She was hit by the now familiar pre-battle breakdown. Her hands went cold, her medtool slipped from her hand. Her breath quickened and she had to hold herself up at against the damp cavern wall to stop herself from falling. A thousand images flickered through her head at once, of fountains of blood, of bullets slamming into her, of her limbs being torn from her body, of desperate screams.
There was a blow to her head, and she jolted forwards.
‘Snap out of it Kasy.’ Saz shouted in her ear, grinning maniacally, his pupils tiny on bright purple eyes. High as a kite.
‘You were doing that thing with your eyes again.’
‘Thanks…’ Kasy replied, and slowly regained some composure. Obviously, she needed another hit. She threw some pills into her mouth, not sure which ones, but they all did something. Her vision and thoughts cleared, just a little.
‘They’re coming!’ Ernst crackling voice echoed from the comms kit.
'Three Sunderers and two Lightnings coming up the hill. Oh crap, there are two gals dropping on the A and B points, a few libs too.'
The squad groaned loudly. These sounded like insurmountable odds for the half platoon in the cavern.
There was a distant explosion, and the cavern shook.
‘That’s our last Sunderer, and they got the tower spawn locked down.’ Ernst called out, an air of desperation to his voice.
The rumbling halted at the end of the passage below, replaced by a growing tumult of mechanical clangs and shouts.
'They're coming, looks like two squads to you...' Ernst buzzed ‘Good luck, Alpha’
Kasy gripped her Vanquisher rifle like a vice, the tension keeping her hands firmly locked in place. They were all on their own now.
‘Kasy, good luck' Ernst's voice wavered through the direct comms.
'POSITIONS!' shouted the captain from the darkness.
Human-alien hybrid voices in a strange language Kasy echoed from the rock faces.
Then, for a few moments, there was silence.
'CONTACT!' Screamed Alyx.
BANG BANG BANG
A hail of LMG rounds shattered the quiet.
Several bullets slammed into the rock face next to Kasy's head, jolting her into action. She threw up the sights of her Vanquisher rifle and pressed the trigger on the first shimmer of movement. BANG
Gushing blood from half an infiltrator's head pasted the rockface thirty metres ahead.
The return fire showered her in stony shards. She ducked into cover. Shaking profusely again, the rifle almost slipped from her hands.
Barnes opened up with the anti-infantry turret just two metres away, and the head-shattering echo roared through her brain. The barrel overwhelmed her with acrid smoke as it overheated. She gagged on the sharp stench that burned her lungs. As she ducked down in the search for clean air, everything descended into chaos.
'GRENADE! LOOK OUT!'
'THREE DOWN THERE!’
The cavern shook and small rocks fell from the ceiling.
A sniper bullet ricocheted off the turret's protective shield and unloaded his brains onto the wall behind him.
'BARNES IS DOWN!'
Kasy gawped in shocked silence until -
She felt a smack against her head.
‘WAKE UP, Kasy!'
It was Saz, shouting in her face, blood already streaming down from dozens of hardlight fragments embedded in his face. Saz slapped the side of her helmet again.
‘GET HIM UP SOLDIER’
Coughing, she grabbed her helmet respirator with one hand and fumbled for the med tool with the other, dropping her rifle on the floor.
Another face loomed out of the smoke next to his.
'WE'LL COVER!' Gail, cheerily shouted, smiling with absurd dissonance to the madness around him.
The staccato of shotgun rounds from Max's suit punched through the cacophony.
Saz was fixing up Barnes’ chest, which had also been punctured by several pulsar rounds. Hiding behind the turret, Kasy set her med tool to work on the back of his head. All the while, energy rounds plinked off the hardlight barriers.
The blood hardened, stopped, and the hole in the back of his head miraculously filled, sealing itself with a blue sticky nanite glue. He couldn't be fully healed here, more stuck back together, which would bring him back to consciousness just enough to keep the fight going.
'YOU BACK?' She shouted in the ear of the slumped engineer. Agonisingly slowly, the revenant writhed into consciousness.
'Yez...' he slurred, ‘hit me again…’
Kasy injected a full medkit into him and the stims rushed into his blood.
With a wild shake of his head Barnes gripped the controls again, his knuckles white, sending more bullets into the smoke below.
'We got ‘em, they're pulling back.' Gail said calmly down the radio, peering around Max’s side halfway down the corridor.
The crackle of gunfire lessened, and Kasy could again hear herself think.
'ALYX DOWN, MEDIC!'
After the heavy was stitched back together, the squad took stock of their ammunition and supplies, knowing they had at best minutes to prepare for the second wave.
'They'll comin’ with grenades, lashers and MAXes next if they follow their book.' Cap said over the radio, nowhere to be seen.
'MAXES INCOMING!' Ernst shouted over the intercom.
White hot plasma rounds roared passed her head, seemingly lighting the air itself on fire. Jumping back, she took a few useless pot-shots down the corridor as the rest of the squad opened up with grenades and rocket launchers. The return fire thick, the squad was forced to take cover. Lasher fire rained down on them past the metallic suits below that marched inexorably along the corridor.
Barnes screamed as his body was set ablaze with blue plasma fire. Kasy's shaky handiwork was just enough to stop the burning, but seconds later another lasher round hit him square in the nose, tearing off the skin of his face and knocking him into the back wall. Twenty seconds later the reconstructed demon barely had eyes or nose at all, just the instinct to stand and pull the trigger. He kept getting hit, and Kasy revived him again and again, each time less human remained.
The Vanu MAX suits kept coming, and they were now a third of the way along the corridor. The first exploded into chunks after a sticky grenade and concentrated shotgun fire tore through the outer plating. But with Alyx and Arcteryx falling back or being revived, there was not enough covering fire to stop the others.
'CHARGE MAX!' screamed Captain over the radio 'Get in there!'
'THAT'S SUICIDE!' Gail screamed back disbelieving 'SIR?'
'THAT’S WHAT WE’RE HERE FOR!’ Cap laughed maniacally ‘DO IT!'
Kasy stared with horror as Gail and Max charged into the darkness below, shotgun rounds surprising the Vanu MAXes and obliterating a group of lasher infantry that naively thought they were out of sight. Suddenly, two Vanu MAX suits ambushed Gail from the sides as they reached the end of the passage, crushing him into dust with swings of their mighty arms. They tore Max’s arms completely from the suit. Now defenceless, Vanu infiltrators leapt on top of him with their knives, stabbing repeatedly in at the weak helmet connectors around his nek.
The squad could only watch as the screaming Max was clinically cut from his armour and dragged out of sight. Then, it was silent.
'They… stagged him...' Alyx foundered. For a moment, comms was silent, even as the rounds continued to whizz past their ears.
Again, Barnes was struck by a hail of blue projectiles, melting his body to the turret.
Kasy's retched at the sight. Even the stims weren’t enough to handle this. Her trembling hand fumbled on the rock face, she felt faint, barely standing as her breaths came a mile a minute.
She felt herself hauled up by her arm.
'WUT YOU DOIN’ CORPORAL?' screamed Captain's one-eyed demonic face, covering her with spittle 'REVIVE HIM. REVIVE BARNES!'
She turned to the engineer's body. Her stomach turned as she realised she couldn’t tell which parts were from the turret and which were his.
'Sir, there’s barely any of Barnes left.' Saz stumbled over his words.
'DON'T YOU QUESTION ME SOLDIER!’ he raged
‘YOU GET DOWN THE FRONT AND REVIVE GAIL'
Saz gulped, 'But sir...'
Kasy watched open mouthed as Saz sidled along the rock face, desperately trying to dodge the incoming plasma fire.
'CORPORAL, REVIVE!' Cap's roared at Kasy once more.
'OK, OK, SIR!' she scrabbled with the medkit again. A full thirty seconds of medkit beam was just enough to get Barnes’ legs workable, with one arm and barely even a recognisable head. A few seconds more, and two tiny dark slits for eyes and a round, immovable hole for a mouth was the best she could do for Barnes. He twitched uselessly on top of the turret.
Kasy heard Saz scream down the corridor as he rounded the corner and was immediately set aflame, melting him before their eyes. She cried and her shaking hands almost dropped the medkit in horror.
'INCOMING!' Shouted Arcteryx over the radio, and they let loose with LMG fire once more among the explosions of plasma grenades and blueshift fire.
Barnes let out a guttural, inhuman cry, and staggered forwards past his turret down the corridor.
'NO! STOP!' shouted Kasy, but Barnes was no longer capable or willing to listen to her. Several bullets smashed into his chest, making him stumble but like a zombie he continued. With his one remaining arm he pulled a C4 charge from somewhere and pretty much rolled the last 10 metres down the slope into the Vanu MAX suits...
The corridor shook with a blistering blast, throwing Kasy and the rest of the squad down to the floor. A few seconds after, singed figures stumbled out of the smoke and dust - Kasy trained her unsteady rifle on them to sigh with relief that it was the bloodied, limping forms of Alyx and Arcteryx.
'Here you go!' she healed them with the rapidly depleting medkit supply.
'There's more coming up!' shouted Ernst over the radio. 'Another sunderer full, no two!'
‘This is hopeless, we need to pull back to the point!’ shouted Arcteryx.
‘WE GO WHEN I SAY SO!’ Cap shouted, laughing sadistically.
He was again in Kasy’s face.
'MEDIC, GET IN THERE AND REVIVE BARNES'
'What? No! I can't?!' she cried in disbelief.
'I SAID, GO DOWN AND -'
Kasy cried out and ducked as Cap’s head slammed into the rock face, a massive hole clean through from ear to ear. She was fumbling for her medkit tool when two strong hands on her shoulder, pulling her into cover to the side of the corridor.
'Leave him, Kasy, he don't deserve it.' Alyx sighed wearily, holding onto a bloodied gash in his jaw.
'Yeah, he's one bad cap.' Arcteryx grinned, somehow keeping his mood amongst all this. 'You go on back to the point and wait for us. We'll hold this ourselves.'
'Just go Kasy, we got this. We need someone at the point until reinforcements arrive.'
Kasy nodded. She glanced one more time down the passage to see a multitude of shadows dancing along the corridor below. Alyx and Arcteryx hurled their last grenades and let loose with their LMGs. The long volley reverberated down the passage as they started to back up.
'GO KASY!' Alyx shouted at her, waving furiously.
And then the lights went out.
Darklight torch in hand, she ran. As she scrabbled up the path, she glimpsed behind her pinpoints of infravision headsets and illuminated blades as Vanu infiltrators stalked and surrounded the two soldiers she had left behind. Switching to their revolvers, the heavies took out a few, but were overcome in a flurry of stabbing motions.
Kasy cried out in fear and ran as fast as she could through the dim light to the point in the centre of the cavern. There were no Conglomerate soldiers to be seen, they must all be dead. Her heart roared a mile a minute as the alien laughter approached, the infiltrators seemingly savouring this hunt.
An EMP grenade smashed into the rocks in front of her, scrambling her vision and blowing out her torch. She tore off her helmet and hurled it to the ground, then ran headlong into the darkness.
There was a hard yank on her ankle, and she slammed into the ground, cracking her nose on a rock. Through bleary vision she saw the hardlight whip entangled around her foot, two stalker infiltrators gargling happily as they leered over her.
The first infiltrator’s visor crumpled into nothing as the other flicked around in surprise. A shadow leapt out at them from nowhere, a gleaming knife all that was visible. They clattered to the floor and scuffled somewhere below her. Kasy instinctively reached for her revolver and pulled it out just as the Vanu infiltrator’s three-pronged face rose off the rock.
The helmet evaporated into the black.
‘GET UP!’ Ernst cried and wrenched her arm up off the rock ‘They’re coming!’
Just thirty metres or so behind them came the rest of the Vanu Sovereignty platoon, torchlights leading the way. Plasma fire fizzed into the rocks around them once again. The point was still 30 metres over the ridge…
‘We won’t make it!’ Kasy cried out in desperation
Kasy felt a sharp pain in her lower leg and fell again. Ernst pulled uselessly at her arm. She looked down.
‘A crossbow? Are you serious?!’ She lamented ‘It’s over Ernst… ‘
He yanked out the bolt hard and Kasy shrieked. He pointed her med kit at the wound.
‘Sorry! Not giving up yet Kasy.’
The Vanu platoon, now in the open cavern at the bottom of the slope, slowed as they saw their prey languishing helplessly on the bloodied pools of the cavern floor.
Several Vanu soldiers collapsed to the floor. Across the ponds of the wide cavern came the rapid fire of Terran Republic MAX suits, aimed straight at the flank of the Vanu platoon.
Peering around a boulder, Kasy stared in disbelief as the Terrans collided with the Vanu in a cacophony of blasts and blinding lights.
‘They broke through the other side?’
‘Yes, Beta squad is gone too.’ Ernst said.
We must be the only Conglomerate soldiers left at the Ascent, she realised, heart sinking.
He dropped the empty med tool on the ground. ‘That’s all I can do. Let’s go while they’re distracted’.
Ducking and diving between the boulders that lined the jagged path, the two survivors made it to C point, a tiny square metal building, about three metres by three with open doors on two sides. Ernst laid proximity mines outside and they pushed two abandoned hardlight barriers to the doors as a makeshift barricade. A spitfire turret hummed happily in the middle of the small room.
Kasy peered over the barrier to see that both factions had sent splinter groups up to take the point. They advanced slowly, the two groups taking pot shots at one another.
‘So, what now?’ Kasy said, panting with exhilarated exhaustion to have survived so long ‘We fight them off?’ she grinned.
‘Funny.’ Ernst smiled back ‘No, we pray.’ And Kasy stared in disbelief as he knelt down to face the wall.
‘What?!’ Kasy stared at him wide eyed ‘I need you to focus Ernst!’
He ignored her, speaking softly in tongues in the far corner of the room.
CHAKA CHAKA CHAKA
The spitfire turret started firing over the barricade at a distant target.
She felt a rush of adrenaline - the medtool stims were kicking in, ‘Screw you, I’m fighting.’
Swinging her rifle over the barricade, she three-shotted the lead Terran heavy assault in the chest, dropping him. Almost immediately the RATATA of the bullets started clanging off the barricade and doorframe.
A bullet lodged itself in Kasy’s shoulder and she dropped her rifle. She cried out and scrabbled backwards to the corner, crying out in pain. The Terrans and Vanu battled outside as she put pressure on the wound.
Ernst was standing over her in the centre of the room, blood streaming from the side of his head. He said nothing.
‘Ernst, what happened?! Help me here.’ He did nothing.
’Kasy, we can get out of here, now. Out of this war, forever.’ He smiled widely, staring at her, droning slowly with an uncharacteristically monotone voice ‘I disconnected myself from the spawn network. He showed me how to do it.’
He was holding his glowing power knife, pointing to the deep, gushing wound in his head.
‘What the hell are you talking about?! Did you remove your implant?!’
She felt the blood streaming down her arms, and increasingly faint ‘We’re both bleeding Ernst, I can’t reach my kit… Help me…’
‘Yes, I can help you.’ His smile broadened ‘I can take you with me Kasy, but we have to go now. We can be together, with Him, somewhere better, up there.’
He pointed the knife up at the sky, then slowly pointed it towards her. Her heart skipped a beat.
With waning strength shook her head to convince herself this wasn’t another fevered dream.
‘Ernst, no ‘He’ is gonna help us. If any god gave a crap about us, they would have saved us a thousand spawns ago.’
He came closer, still pointing the knife. She held up her hands defensively.
‘Kasy, He spoke to me. We will go together, forever, this will just hurt for a second.’
He pulled her hand down and brought the knife closer.
‘Ernst?! Are you crazy?’ she shrieked.
There was a crackle over Ernst’s communicator, which he had left in the corner.
‘Ascent, this is Raven Landing, do you read?’
Ernst hesitated, glanced at the comms device, then turned back.
‘I’m saving -’
Ernst was blown into the opposite wall as a grenade shattered the barricade on the Terran side, raining down shards of hardlight on them. Ernst collapsed to the floor covered in dust. Kasy pulled out her Underboss pistol from her side and pointed it shakily at the body.
A few seconds later, scrabbling slowly for his knife, Ernst hauled himself up.
‘Ascent, this is Raven Landing, do you copy? We have recaptured the base.’
‘Ernst, put it down.’
Ernst, staggering, pointed the knife again, a confused look on his bloodied face.
‘But isn’t this what you always wanted, Kasy?’
She steeled herself to pull the trigger.
Ernst’s back was shorn half through by a ball of lasher fire. He fell on top of her, she felt a deep, cauterised hole in his open back.
‘ERNST?! Hold on.’ She shouted.
For a few seconds he lay immobile, then somehow, coughing up gobbets of blood and other green fluids, shuddered into life.
‘What?!’ he groaned ‘I’m sorry Kasy. I guess I had too many stims.’ He glanced up and gave her a bloodied grin.
‘Let me heal you -’ she grappled for her last med kit at her side. He grabbed her hand.
‘No! No more for me, please…’ he slurred.
‘Ascent,’ hissed the comms ‘if there is anyone left, we have orbital strike incoming now. Take cover.’
A proximity mine exploded a few metres away, showering the room with shrapnel. The spitfire turret was knocked on its side and started throwing hot bullet casings towards them.
‘Get out of here… Kasy’ he said.
‘OK! Redeploy, redeploy…’ Her shaking hands reached up to the backup spawn controller implant embedded in the side of her head. Her hands were trembling too much, she struggled to enter the override code.
His hand grabbed hers and helped her enter the code into the implant. Squads mostly shared override codes for emergencies like this.
The green redeploy counter ticking down in front of her eyes.
‘Thank you, Ernst.’
10, 9 ,8…
Alien and human shouts mingled as the Terran and Vanu forces grappled in furious close combat just metres outside, soon overcome by the ear-splitting scream of the orbital strike that shook the foundations of the rock around them. She heard huge boulders falling from the ceiling outside.
Ernst was barely moving.
‘Now you - redeploy Ernst’ she shouted desperately, searching for his hand and head controller. Her heart broke to leave him like this.
‘No, let me go!’ he slurred.
‘Goddamnit Ernst…’ and she reached for his implant. There was nothing there but bloodied chunks of metal and bone. Ernst had destroyed it. Tears welled in her eyes.
6, 5, 4…
‘Goodbye, Kasy.’ Ernst whispered. His eyes closed and he slumped into unconsciousness on top of her.
With a trembling breath, she gave in. There was nothing she could do - she had to let him go.
‘Goodbye, Ernst’ she sobbed, clasping his hand with the little strength she had left.
The ground quaked and points of light appeared through the ceiling as the intensity of the orbital strike sheared through tens of metres of hard rock. She had never seen one this destructive, or so beautiful.
Streams of white energy tore through the rock face, burning her eyes. Half the ceiling collapsed onto control point, burying it.
A Vanu infiltrator bounded into the room, lassoed Ernst by the neck, and dragged his body off her. The rope wrapped around her arm, pulled at her. Two leathery hands grappled roughly for the implant on her head. She screamed.
The redeploy connection kicked in. The room faded to white amongst the blinding light of the orbital strike.
As she ascended rapidly into the respawn ether that lined the Auraxian stratosphere, she finally relaxed. Was she dead? It didn’t matter. No fear here, no death. Just blissful silence.
If you like this type of story, you can find more like it here on my wordpress site.
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2021.10.28 12:11 TheNoob2011 I built a city in the spaceship
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