Dee bit... Phoenix era

 
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KillJoy
Jihaddi


Joined: 09 Apr 2004
Posts: 91
Location: Wisconsin! Bleh.

PostPosted: Tue Mar 29, 2005 10:08 pm    Post subject: Dee bit... Phoenix era Reply with quote

This is in the middle of stuff... I'm assuming for my purposes that the lizards invaded the Blood Jihad Skunk Works on the moon. Because I want to, okay?

Dee lay on the deck, doing an excellent impression of a corpse (other people's blood, and a crudge patch over the right arm helped matters) as she watched the X'hirjq sweep the area. In reality, she was hyperventilating and would have been soiling herself if she hadn't done so already. The lizards had already killed most of the other techs and gutted the base; almost the whole thing had been opened to hard vacuum, some parts while people were still at work.

Parts. Don't think about parts. Don't think about parts. Bad word, in the context of having to crawl through the mangled bodies of friends to get where she was, some torn apart, or burned, or killed from decompression. Too many bodies. Try not to think about it. If she thought about it, she'd throw up again, the lizard would see her move, and she'd die. Or maybe the lizard would decide she looked suspicious anyway, and she'd die. Or, if it didn't come near her within about 10 minutes, she'd run out of air and die. She wasn't even 13 yet, and desperately didn't want to die.

But then, even if the next part of her harebrained idea worked, she rated the odds of her not dying in the process of it as pretty low. Some of the evacuation pods had been taken, some disabled, and even if they weren't, there was the problem of the huge space fleet to contend with. The only way she could think of was to steal an X'hirjq landing craft, which meant killing the rear guard left on board and then figuring out the controls and bluffing her way past the fleet. If she hadn't been spent all the time since the lizard mailbomber killed the JihadLinker network and when they broke in working on cracking their interfaces and crypto, there would be no chance. As is, the odds were not much better, but it was that or give up and die.

Now if the goddamned lizard would just come closer! She wanted to cry, but then, as if by magic, the fucking thing looked her way and approached. Possibly it had noticed a new corpse on the pile. Maybe it wanted lunch. Dee really didn't give a damn, just that it was coming closer. She watched it in the reflection of the helmet of Technician Darren Johnson, who last week had shown her some of the tricks to optimizng Doom on the JihadLinkers, and now was missing his lower half. The lizard approached, peering at the tiny space suit, and finally coming to the position she had been hoping against hope it would stand in. Hidden under her body, her mass bracing her arm to stop the recoil, she emptied her pistol's armor piercing rounds into the lizard's face.

Dee more than half expected that that would be the last thing she ever did, and was cringing for a few seconds before she could make herself look. It had worked; the rounds had cracked the faceplate of the lizard's space suit open and decompression had done the rest. Knowing that the rest were spread around the station and she had a little bit of time, she took the luxury of throwing up in terror. Then, wasting as little time as possible, she scrambled down, got the access panels off of the alien plasma rifle and started tearing out wires.
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Elena, aka Leto Bucher
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Joined: 13 Mar 2005
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Location: Waldemar, ON

PostPosted: Tue Mar 29, 2005 10:13 pm    Post subject: Hrm... Reply with quote

Wow, this iis good. Not much else as can be said.
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KillJoy
Jihaddi


Joined: 09 Apr 2004
Posts: 91
Location: Wisconsin! Bleh.

PostPosted: Tue Mar 29, 2005 10:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The plasma rifle weighed too much, and was shaped wrong. Dee suspected it weighed too much for even adults. She knew it would recoil too much for her to handle as well, from seeing them being used too many times already today. None of that really mattered the way she was going to use it, but even in the lunar gravity, she was working hard to drag it around. Even above the assortment of horrible smells in her suit, she could tell her air was getting stale as the rebreathers struggled to maintain something breathable.

Still, she managed to get to the vehicle bay without running into any lizards, which was a plus as it meant she didn't die there. As she'd hoped, one of the landing craft was near the entrance, presumably for quick access to the troops in the base. Of course, it had the anti-personnel turrets trained on the doors. That would be way too much to ask, but was something she'd planned on. She slotted her JihadLinker into a direct connection with the base and ran a program she'd started keying in since this whole insane idea came to her.

In the vehicle bay, things started happening. The automated loading mechanisms for some of the fighter fleet started doing things with ordinance that would violate most safety codes everywhere. Explosions shook the area as robotic arms banged bombs into the ground. Hopefully the goddamned lizards were suitably distracted. Still, Dee almost psyched herself out of it, which wasn't too surprising. Gritting her teeth, she broke into a sprint, slapping the arming button on the gutted plasma rifle and then flinging it through a boarding hatch as it started turning bright colors.

The next stage of the plan was risky, but one Dee couldn't do much about, so she hit the floor and covered her head. She was banking on forcefields and hull material on the ship to be strong enough; if they weren't, she was dead, but covering one's head was a carefully learned habit from working in the Skunk Works.

Inside the hatch, the plasma rifle glowed white hot as it built up a charge several orders of magnitude over safe limits, then flashed it to fusion. It exploded in a spray of radiation; the normal magnetic bottle that would direct the bolt of startstuff contrained to not move, and the shielding that usually prevented the firer from being horribly irradiated having been completely torn out. It seemed that her luck was holding... the armor and shielding had evidently stopped enough of the radiation that Dee's homemade neutron bomb didn't immediately kill her, which was the best she'd hoped for.

Spots were beginning to show up in her vision by the time she'd clambered into another hatch and hit the airlock. She tore off the helmet as soon as her suit registered atmospheric pressure, drawing in a lung full of the odor of burnt meat.
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KillJoy
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Joined: 09 Apr 2004
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Location: Wisconsin! Bleh.

PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2005 7:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Next step on the path.

"Okay... okay," De muttered to herself. She had plugged the JihadLinker into the navigational computer and was directly tickling the troop transport's main engine. There was a jolt, and it skidded on the ground, eventually up out of the landing bay, then shut the engine back down.

"Now, let's see..." after a number of aborted tries, she managed to get the passive sensorts trained on the sky above. She had a pretty good idea where everything was. There was only a small flight path that she could take and not be spotted by everything unfriendly... a slingshot around the back of the moon, as a pile of debris. But to get that to work was going to require brute force. Far more than was supposed to be available even the anatomies of the lizards. So she bypassed every single elegant fine control mechanism (that she couldn't use anyway) and pointed the engine in the right direction. Counter-thrusters would hold the ship in place until the main reactors built to full thrust, then it would launch, maximum acceleleration all the way until they were out of the moon's shado. She hit the button on the JihadLinker to start the count down and braced herself in a crash couch as the engines came on line, kicked to maximum fury and held there.

"Oh hell, " she checked the readouts. "Safety limiter's gotta be venting plasma so I can't get the thrust I want. I have no fucking time for this." She tore out her pistol and clumsily fed a new magazine in before stalking to the back side of the ship, stepping over horribly burned dead lizards but too busy and angry to care. "There," she said eyeing the reactor. It sorta looked like their reactors. It had to work in the same way. So a safety vent would be... there. She fired 5 shots into the black box, figured that about did it, but kicked it for good measure before going back to the bridge.

The countdown again began, and she burrowed into the seat as the rumble of reactors coming to power, their tone steadily increasing. Creaks of the hull started echoing through the structure, which she found good. The emergency klaxons and flashing lights seemed promising as well... high pitched metallic screams... yep, it was a good thing she couldn't see the instruments, or she would have been scared. She was actually kind of giddy, since this would be a pretty wild ri...

*THUD* The JihadLinker decided that the reactors were fully spooled and turned off the restraining engines. The landing ship groaned, creaked, and complained as was smashed in the ass by the hammer of Thor, accelerating at 30 times the force of gravity. Dee's head slammed against the inside of her helmet and she didn't notice anything for a few minutes.

Whe she came to, everything was far quieter, except for the klaxons. She had no idea what *those* ones meant but she was breathing and she could move, but she just felt *tired*. Dee hauled herself out of the chair, and checked her JihadLinker to make sure everything had gone off, then slowly walked to the window to watch as the Earth came overhead. It really was beautiful... she'd always wanted to see it. But not like this. She just sat, half collapsed on the floor, and started sobbing. She let herself, seeking the release, until she started to cough. Everything else stopped cold until she could finish coughing... a thick, dark mass of blood onto the floor plates.

She started at it, then slowly reached for her JihadLinker and started pushing buttons to get the right function open. Rapid clicking sounded and she closed here eyes... just hoping it's wrong before checking the film badge on her suit that told of cumulative radiation dose. It was flat black.

"It's not fair," she whispered to the dark.
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KillJoy
Jihaddi


Joined: 09 Apr 2004
Posts: 91
Location: Wisconsin! Bleh.

PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2005 10:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmmm, oops. Going to have to edit the last few, because I just realized the obvious fact that *there's no freakin' gravity*! Ah well, I don't care enough right at the moment. So here's more! I think I've got quite a few more of these in me, actually... which Dee may not be happy about, but tough shit for her. Wink


Radiation poisoning. Those two words were ones Dee really hadn't wanted to have to deal with, though she'd known the risk would be there with the improvised neutron bomb. She worked very hard to calm herself as she floated around the cockpit, then pulled out her JihadLinker to pull up some reference material.

"Okay," she muttered, checking some nuclear physics references. "So, figure about a megajoule... inverse square law over a sphere, hull metal... " she crunched the numbers in her head, as it was far faster than trying to key them into the calculator. "Enh, figure about a hundred rems." Dee nodded to herself, opened a window in the medical section of the reference section and frowned, checking the clock on it. "Hm, that can't be right... should be too soon for symptoms, and not this severe."

Muttering more, she absently killed the alarm klaxons, then thought of something. "Oh. I wonder if that was a radiation alarm... overload runs on reactors would do that, wouldn't they. Okay, so assume..." Dee muttered to herself some more, treating the whole thing as an abstract problem instead of something directly bearing on her own life. "Hmm. Maybe three hundred rems... depending on hull metal. Which jibes more with timing... so... okay. I'm not going to die from that right away, just feel like shit and maybe die later."

Strangely, at least to her own mind, that did very little to make her feel any better. As an alternative to spending the next several hours doing nothing but sobbing and all the various fun symptoms described in the medical references, Dee decided to also work on packaging the interface and decrypt code she'd cooked up into a documented form usable by other people. She glanced at the occasional flashes in her flight path and hoped that they'd actually get a chance to use it.
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