Space, Outside the Epsilon Gratino Galaxy, Januray 3rd, 2157, Prime Universe Earth Date
Blue smoke traveled through the void, beginning the now common encirclement. Lightning began striking from smoke cloud to smoke cloud. Within minutes, the smoke had completely encircled it's unknowing target and began moving towards it's core.
Tyger Tower One, Scarven City, Planet Scarven, Tyger System, Epsilon Gratino Galaxy
Christopher stepped out of the bathroom, wiping water off of his face. He looked out the window that took up his entire wall, scanning the cityscape of Scarven's capital. He looked upwards at the top of the second Tyger Tower, sister building of the one he was in. After a moment, he saw the all to familiar lightning and smoke englufing the top of the tower. His eyes widened as both the figurative alarm in his head and physical alarm on his wall went off. He turned as his door opened, seeing his daughter Kiah in her armor.
"I know, I know. Let's go!" Christopher yelled as he grabbed his Jedi robes and sidearm. He rushed out the door with her. When they got to the lobby, the pair ran into a group of old friends; Urdnot Grunt, Garrus Vakarian, James Vega, and the geth unit Legion.
"Praetor, what the hell is going on!" called Garrus, sprinting out the front doors with the rest of them.
"Rift Storm! We need to get everyone to the shelters. Garrus, Legion, come with me to Sector 5. Grunt, James, head over to Sector 8 with Kiah!" Denson said, guiding people to the nearest underground shelter. The group split up, and a minute later, Christopher was helping people into the shelters when the smoke got down to ground level. As Christopher covered his face, he, as well as the rest of his galaxy, began the trip through space and time.
Chapter 1: ArrivalEdit
Space Above Procyon, Cybran Nation Capital, Intergalactic Republic Territory, Epsilon Gratino Galaxy
A New Republic Nebulon-B Frigate and two Hellcat Squadran Dovahkiin-class Cruisers prepared as they got ready to exit hyperspace, carrying the first diplomats to the new galaxy that appeared only a few short days ago. As they exited hyperspace, alarms flared and the crew turned to look ahead of them.
"Star Destroyers!" the capitans yelled out over the intercomm, referring to the ships a few hundred kilometers away. However, closer to them, were two ships of unknown design. The larger ship, with the name SSV Alexandria tattoed on it's side, angled itself to come in below the Nebulon-B Frigates, allowing for clear shots on all three ships if need be. The smaller ship, cruiser sized, with the name SSV Victoria, went straight ahead, able to crash headlong into the frigate if nothing stopped it.
Bridge of the Geneva-class Cruiser SSV Victoria
"Unknown convoy, this is Capitan Stark of the SSV Victoria, lower your shields and power down your weapon systems! We mean you no harm. You shall be escorted to our shipyards for docking." said the capitan of the cruiser sized ship. On the three Coalition ships, no message was recieved as the SSV Alexandria launched two flights of TIE Interceptors to escort the ships.
Bridge of Nebulon-B Frigate *Unknown Name*
"Sir, the unknown ships are launching TIE fighters! What should we do?" called a crewman on the frigate.
"Engage them! We can handle two ships. Send a message to Coalition Command, this is either a Shadow Alliance base or the population of this galaxy are not friendly," said the capitan as a volley from their turbolasers rained onto the two ships.
Bridge of the SSV Victoria
"Sir, they have opened fire! Capitan Stark, orders?" asked the Victoria's First Officer.
"Tell the Alexandria to engage the enemy flanking ships. We shall take the lead ship. Fire all weapons!" Capitan James Stark yelled, seeing his first real combat as a capitan for the Republic. He took a long sip from his cup of coffee before adding, "And block their communications as well."
Turbolasers, missiles, and MAC gun shots were exchanged between the five ships. Within minutes, however, the Alexandria had obliterated the two Dovahkiin Cruisers without any major damage, with the SSV Victoria taking out the frigate while only losing a quarter of their shields.
"Send a message to the Praetor and the Republican Council, they will need to hear about this attack," James said, taking another sip of his coffee as the two ships turned back towards Procyon.
Coalition Stategic High Command Center, Earth, Milky Way Galaxy, One Month Later
"No! I refuse to send anymore ships to that deathtrap! Especially not my ships! May I remind you, we haven't only lost our initial group, but the UNSC and New Republic have also lost follow up investigations," Ryan Ferran yelled at IceBite as he suggested sending in a trio of Phantom Legion ships to investigate the new galaxy that had appeared via Rift Storm a month earlier.
"Yes, General, we are all aware that our former attempts have failed to have any success whatsoever. Your reminder just rubs salt in the wound," Director Davenport said.
"Well, Ryan, as you claim your troops are so superior to everyone elses, we believe that you will have more success," said IceBite, trying to calm the room down.
"The only way I'll send my people into that, that, Bermuda Triangle of galaxies is if you allow me to personally cram a Phantom Legion battlegroup or two down their throats," Ryan said, slamming his fist against the table.
"Absolutly not! We are not launching an invasion of that galaxy. Do you know the implications that would have?" IceBite said, annoyed.
"You're kidding me, right?" Ryan said, looking around the room. "Heh, this is, this is freakin' bullshit." Ryan said, a combination of amused confusion and outright fury. "We're just going to just sit here on our asses toiling our thumbs while the possibility of intergalactic war sits at our doorstep? Really IceBite, they said you were the tactical genious of the Coalition, but now I see that whoever said that had a very screwed up view," Ryan said, storming out of the room with the fully armored Raynor close behind. Zack looked at IceBite worryingly.
"I'll go calm him down and stop him from doing anything stupid," Zack walked to the door before turning back to the conference room. "You know he's right. If they do decide to invade us, we're going to not only get our asses handed to us, but he's just going to laugh and say 'I told you so' while standing on a pile of their dead, because he's going to be the only one that's ready for it." Zack turned back towards the door and walked out.
Republican Council Room, Scarven City, Scarven, Tyger System, Epsilon Gratino Galaxy
"Decided then, it is."
"We shall invade that galaxy and obliterate those fools who wish to constantly send in these invasion forces," Darth Vader said, leader and representative of the Galactic Empire said, adding onto Jedi representative Grand Master Yoda's statement.
"Master, if I may interject. We are in the longest sustained period of peace in a decade. The people are tired of constant war and terror. Another war now could cause unrest, anger, or even rebellion. I suggest diplomacy," Chirstopher Denson, Supreme Commander, or Praetor, of the Intergalactic Republic's military said.
"We have tried that everytime they have come, and everytime they have attacked us. We cannot risk an invasion," said Princess Rhianne Burke, leader of the Aeon Illuminate. Christopher nodded at the comment acceptingly.
"Duely noted, your highness. Well then, when shall I have the fleets mobilized?" asked Denson.
"We have already ordered our respected factions fleets to prepare, so they will be ready in a few days. The land and sea forces we want ready by the end of the week," stated United Earth Directorate Admiral Gererd DuGualle.
"Understood. Long live the Republic," Christopher said.
"Done then, this meeting is. Watch over us, the Force will, in this desperate hour," Master Yoda said as the rest of the COuncil began to get up and leave.
Chapter 2: Ass Sitting Calls For Abundant 'I Told You So'-ingEdit
A week later, some of the Coalition's outer colonies began going dark for a day or so, then coming back online. When asked, the planet would send a message simply stating 'Matinence' or 'Interference'. Eventually, communications with ships stationed at Installation 05 went dark. A few hours later, reports came in from the ships stationed there.
Ferran Clan Household, Earth, Milky Way Galaxy
"This is wierd. Dad, come look at this," Ethan said, motioning his father over.
"What is it, Et'ika?" Ryan said, calling him by his Mandalorian name.
"These ship reports, they are nearly exactly the same as all the others we get from them."
"What's with the nearly?" asked Ryan.
"They have encryption, as well as secondary and tertiary encryption. But, there is no captian signiture. The captian of the ship is supposed to sign the report." Ethan said.
"Are you sure they just didn't forget?" asked Ryan.
"Really, Ry'buir? 125 ships all forgetting on the same day? Not what I'd call a coincidence," Ethan said.
"What are you suggesting, my son?" Ryan said, knowing the answer.
"You know what I'm suggesting, Dad," Ethan said, turning off his holopad. Ryan sighed loudly.
"Well then, let's get ready. It's time for the fun to begin," Ryan said, taking the safety of his pistols.
Coalition Strategic High Command Center, Earth, Milky Way Galaxy, One Hour Later
"This evidence is all we need! It proves that something is out there, and it isn't going down without one hell of a fight," Ryan said to the Coalition Security Council.
"This does show something happened, but we are not going to be rash. I shall personally lead an investigation group to the installation to make sure it goes smoothly," Thel 'Vadam said, looking over the reports one more time.
"No," Ryan said, head down and eyes closed.
"Excuse me, General? What did you just say?" Director Davenport said, stunned at what he thought he heard.
"No. You'll just send another three or five ship team to look at the scene. This thing took out one hundred twenty-five ships. One hundred twenty-five. Your ships won't cut it.I'm taking Battle Groups Avalanche, Dominion, and Strigon to investigate, while Aigaion is ready to hyperjump in to reinforce us if need be. I'm moving Battle Group Confederacy back to defend the Core Worlds in case they continue to push against us," Ryan said, typing commands into the computer on his gauntlet.
"What!? You can't do that! IceBite, control your soldier!" Davenport yelled, getting out of his chair.
"Ryan, you can not do that. They may be your battle groups, but you are my General," IceBite said, his voice dripping with anger.
"You know what, I really don't care. I'm not going to sit here while the Coalition falls around me with our great leaders doing jack shit," Ryan said, putting amazing amounts of sarcasm and emphasis on the two words 'great leaders'.
"Excuse me, but you should remember that this is my squadr-" IceBite began saying, but Ryan used the Force to close his mouth. IceBite's eyes widened with anger as he created balls of light energy in his palms.
"You've talked enough for one day," Ryan said before releasing IceBite's mouth. He turned and walked towards the door, but before he reached it, two balls of light flew at his back. Ryan brought up the metal floor panels to block the blast before diving to the side and Force pushing IceBite into the wall a few meters behind him. Before anything else could happen, security rushed into the room. Ryan just turned and walked out of the room, leaving everyone dumbfounded that he had just defeated the courageous IceBite.
Installation 05, Coalition Space, Milky Way Galaxy
"All crewmen, to your battlestations! All pilots, report to your fighters. Prepare to exit hyperspace!" Ryan called over the shipwide intercomm on the I.C.S. Phoenix. Men, women, and droids were running around the halls, trying to get to where they need to before the ship entered the void of space.
As the fleet exited hyperspace, they saw massive amounts of debris in front of them.
"Oh god..." Ryan said, looking from the bridge of the ship. "Scan the area for ships and survivors."
"Sir, ships on long range scanners! They are on the other side of the ring," a crewman said.
"Show me," Ryan called to the crewman. A second later, a blue hologram emerged infront of Ryan. It showed a massive fleet inbetween the ring and the small planet it orbited.
"General, they outnumber us three to one!"
"Then it is an even fight. All ships, fire at will. Burn their mongrel hides,' Ryan said, as his battlegroup moved forward, launching fighters as they avoided the wreckage of the previous battle.
Bridge of the Imperium-class Ultra Star Destroyer R.C.S. Invictus, the Intergalactic Republic's Flagship.
"Sir, an enemy fleet has just warped in! Two hundred fifty strong and launching fighters!" yelled a serviceman.
"Alright men, twice as many as last time! Prepare for combat!" Christopher Denson said over the ships's intercomm. "Soldier, scramble Typhoon Squadran, we shall meet them head on."
"Yes sir," said the trooper. He ran out of the bridge as Christopher got up.
"Good luck, sir," said another crewman said.
"Thank you, private," Chirtopher said, walking away. He turned back and looked at the communications officer. "Also, tell Admiral DuGalle and Vice-Admiral Stukov to flank the enemy's port side. Have them use Yamato Cannons as much as possible."
"Right away, sir," a young women said, typing into an omni-tool.
A few minutes later, 2 large groups of fighters were on a collision course near the middle of the ring. On one side was Christopher Denson, leading Typhoon Squadron, the most feared fighter group in the Republic. They were backed up by over a thousand other fighters. On the other side was a couple hundred fighters led by the disbanded Zeta Wing flight leader Zack Sigurdson, one of the most skilled and competent pilots in the Coalition.
"All fighters, fire on my mark. Typhoon Squadron, on me,"said Denson towards the communicator built into his flight helmet.
"All craft, break off and attack on my cue," Zack said into his own comlink. The two groups continued to close on each other, easily within 60 kilometers of each other. A few more seconds past, and they were within 20. Then, almost simultaneously, both leaders sent the order.
"All fighter craft, fire!" Instantly, streaks of green, red, and blue flew at each other, followed by Proton torpedos and missiles. Explosions became numerous as fighters were destroyed and debris began to scatter across the battlespace.
"All fighters, engage!" yelled Denson as his fighters began moving in different directions.
"Break off and attack!" Zack screamed into his helmet comm and his fighters scattered to avoid the incoming fire, which seemed incredibly more numerous then the amount going with them. Immediately, Zack found his first target: a black and grey fighter that had already taken out three seperate craft. Zack broke off to engage the fighter just as a MAC round nearly collided with his fighter.
"What the hell! Ryan, what's up?" asked Zack, still dogging the fighter he was after.
"The enemy fleet has engaged us, and it seems like our fleets will meet, well, where you guys are," Ryan said over the commotion in the background.
"Works for me. Be careful out there, buddy," Zack said, firing at his target.
"Dammit, who gave the order to shoot! We're in the middle of this!" Denson yelled, dodging a burst of plasma fired at him.
"Admiral Hackett, sir. He said that you guys would be able to handle the fire," an officer said from the R.C.S. Invictus.
"Grrr, fine. All fighters, open up a firing lane for the fleet. It's about to get hot! And Garuda, get this guy off me!" Denson said.
"This is Shamrock, we got this. You take the lead Talisman," a voice said over the radio, which belonged to Marcus 'Shamrock' Lampert, Typhoon Squadron's number four, talking to Typhoon's number 3, 'Talisman'.
"Also, sir, on their own request, Shockwave, Cyclonus, Jetfire, Silverbolt, and Fireflight are on the way to join the fight," added the officer.
"Thank you, officer," Denson said, closing the channel, "Damn recruits, never know when to shut up." Behind him, Talisman and Shamrock we closing in on the fighter tailing him.
"Ok Talisman, let's do this," said Shamrock as Talisman fired four missiles, three of them heading towards other ships, while one followed the enemy ace.
"Dammit, missile!" Zack yelled, rolling his ship out of the way. Dodging the missile, he ended up losing his target. However, he did see that the fleets were getting very close, and the volume of heavy fire was increasing. "Hmm, this could be problematic," Zack said, watching turbolaser shots enter the ball of fighters.
"He evaded! Talisman, ready for round 2?" Shamrock said, looking at his friend's fighter. Talisman looked over his shoulder at his friend flying meters away from him and nodded. Both of them fired a volley of four missiles this time. Again, three of Talisman's turned away and went towards other fighters. The last five missiles went dead towards the sole enemy fighter.
Zack's eyes widened as he saw the five missiles heading at his fighter. He began a series of spins and turns, but to no avail. Within seconds, all five missiles hit Zack's fighter. Instinctivly, he slammed the eject button, throwing his fighter's cockpit away from the rest of the fighter.
"Haha, we got 'em! C'mon Talisman, let's go rejoin the fight," Shamrock said as the pair turned back towards the middle of the fight. Zack's cockpit began to drift into space, consoles and controls burning out or exploding.
"Sir, Commander Sigurdson's fighter has gone dark," a crewman said to Ryan.
"Dammit Zack, where are you?" Ryan worriedly said into his personal comlink.
"I'm here. Can I get a pickup?" Zack asked over his helmet comm. Ryan gave a sigh of relief knowing his friend was at least alive at the moment. "No problem, we'll get someone out as soon as possible."
As the batle continued, Zack was picked up and the two fleets fully engaged one another. Within thirty minutes of the fleets fully engaging, the Phantom Legion was down to 66% of their original strength, and the Republic was still going hard. Suddenly, the bow of the R.C.S. Invictus started to glow green. Instantly, a long green beam shot out from it and impacted a Phantom Legion dreadnought, destroying it instantly.
"What the hell!? That ship's a frickin' Death Star!" Ryan yelled, watching the debris of the ship slide into the empty void. "Dammit, we can't defend against that! Damn. Captain, get me Aigaion!" A few seconds later, Ryan was in touch with the acting leader of Battle Group Aigaion.
"Commander, we need support here," Ryan said over the link. After a few seconds, their was no answer, so Ryan tried again. "Commander, we need support at Installation 05!"
"They're everywhere!" said the Commander, who sounded like he was far away from his microphone. In the background, Ryan could hear explosions and other loud noises.
"Commander, what's going on?" Ryan nervously called.
"Ambush! I don't know- Oh god no!-" the commander said before a loud explosion happened and the connection died out.
"Dammit. Alright, all forces, prepare to retreat!" Ryan said over his fleetwide communicator.
"Sir, we can't cover our retreat with this few ships. We will be killed before we enter hyperspace," a crewman said, scared and worried beyond belief.
"I think we can be of assistance," a voice said over the comlink. It was Chancellor Martok's, leader of the Klingon Empire.
"Chancellor, good to hear from you. Where are you?" Ryan asked.
"Look up," the Chancellor said. Ryan looked above his ship and saw ship after ship of Klingon origin warp into the battle.
"Nice of you to join us, but unless you have a few hundred more of those, we are retreating. No arguments," Ryan said.
"Oh, I completely agree. I've always agreed with you, but have gone about it a different way. I follow my orders, unlike you," Martok said smugly.
"Yet here you are," Ryan retorted.
"They never said I couldn't join you on the glorious field of battle," Martok responded.
"Well ok then, cover us as well fall back. Battle Group Aigaion was ambushed near Bara Magna, so we are falling back to there," Ryan said.
"Yeah, them and the rest of the galaxy. They have launched a full scale invasion. We also have reports that after less than a day of fighting, the Shadow Alliance is down to 50% of their fighting strength. You were right, General. You were right," Martok said to Ryan.
"I'm not going to say it," Ryan said simply.
"You can say it."
"No, I'm not going to."
"Go ahead, we deserve it," Martok said as Ryan took a deep breath.
"I told you so!" Ryan said, taking a large load off his chest, and a large volley to his ship, shaking it all around.
"General, go! We shall cover you!" Martok yelled. Ryan nodded and ordered all his ships to turn and run.
"The Coalition is retreating!" called Typhoon 8, Rebecca 'Lanner' Westbrook.
"Destroy them, immediately!" said Shockwave in his robot form, destroying fighters with his plasma cannon arm.
"Do not give chace after they leave. Regroup and repair after they have left," said Denson, destroying his 35th fighter of the day. Within minutes, the Klingon fleet was devastated, but the Phantom Legion had retreated, and the Klingons were right there behind them.
"That's right, send them home with their tails between their legs!" called a Republic pilot. Cheers rang out all over the battlegroup as the fighter returned to their ships. Near the ring, reinforcements began pouring in for the Republic.
"Well then, let's get ready, we got a long way to go before we reach Earth," Denson said over his comlink to the entire fleet.
Coalition Strategic High Command Center, Earth, Milky Way Galaxy, 24 Hours Later
"So, IceBite, got anything to say?" Ryan asked, looking at the blue holomap in the center of the room.
"I think you should stop gloating and start getting ready for battle," IceBite said, glaring at Ryan with the two black eyes he got from their fight a few days back.
"I accept your apology. Anyway, it seemed that a lot of their ships were similar to ours. I counted many ships that seemed the same as not only my warships, but also ones of our allies and retired ones. However, there were still a ton of ships I've never seen before. Some were similar, but still," Ryan said, rolling his neck to crack it.
"Well, that could be good. At least we know the weaknesses of some of their ships," IceBite said.
"Yep. So, this enemy we're facing has gotten through our farthest colonies. Our Outer colonies will be next to get hit. Hopefully, our ships will be able to create a defensive line and hold them back," Ryan said, pointing to various areas on the map.
"Excuse me, but General, I sense that you have an extreme urge to somewhere that is not here," Jedi Master Luke Skywalker said curiously.
"Umm, yes, actually. Family buisness back home," Ryan said.
"Don't worry, Ryan. We can handle setting up the defensive line at the moment. Go home and resolve whatever is going on and come back tomorrow," IceBite said sympathetically.
"Thank you, Commander," Ryan said, nodding to IceBite. Ryan bowed to Luke and left the room, heading for home.
Ferran Household, Kaven Base, Earth, Milky Way Galaxy, 15 Minutes Later
"Ethan, Raynor, Jared, have you three broken through yet?" Ryan called once he was inside his home.
"Yes, broke through in five minutes. This isn't what we thought it was, but it's close. It doesn't have movements or anything. It has names, classes, planets, things like that. It's more like a.....encyclopedia. It gives us their leader's names, ships classes, their armaments, planet names. Everything but movements and deployments," Ethan said, referring to a computer they'd salvaged from a destroyed enemy destroyer.
"Close enough. Make a copy for us, then we'll bring the original over to command," Ryan said, patting him on the back.
"You trust them with this?" Raynor asked.
"They need it. It'll help coordinate efforts. Actually, make a copy and throw it into an old computer. Keep this one for us. Never know what we might find," Ryan added.
"Yes, Ry'buir," Ethan said and got to typing.
Chapter 3: Information BrokerEdit
Coalition Strategic High Command Center, Earth, Milky Way Galaxy
"So, you're telling me that we have everything we can on them?" IceBite asked, looking at the various holograms appearing in front of him.
"All but where they are. As of now, we can't tell where they are, let alone when they will attack," Ryan answered, stopping the holograms on a list of the new faction's leadership. He opened up to a certain dossier, a blond, well built man in black Spartan VI armor, helmet under his arm.
"This is Christopher Denson, leader of the Imperial Republican Military," Ryan said, zooming in on his face. Zack Sigurdson grimaced at the sound of the name.
"The what?" asked Ashelia, queen of Dalamasca.
"Imperial Republican Military. The Intergalactic Republic's armed forces," Ryan answered.
"So, that's what they're called." Davenport commented on the name.
"Yep. Poetic, is it not?" Ryan said, going back to the group of images showing the rest of the Republic's leaders. "It appears that many of their leaders are the same as the ones here. They have soldiers from the New Republic, Galactic Empire, Covenent, UNSC. Most of our weapons they know about already just because they have them as well."
"So, we have no advantages whatsoever?" IceBite asked.
"Well, we know the land, and as of now, I don't think they have the amount of intelligence on us we have on them," Ryan answered.
"Hmm, this is a complete shit storm," Zack said, much to the distaste to the other leaders, excluding Ryan.
Tyger Tower 1, Floor 119, Scarven City, Scarven, Tyger System, Epsilon Gratino Galaxy
"Jaing, have you hacked it yet?" Christopher asked his adopted brother, a clone ARC Trooper.
"Almost. The video I'm watching on the other screen is distracting. It's amazing what people do for entertainment," Jaing Skitara said, looking at a second monitor. "Got it. It's nice having a decent system to hack again."
"Had," Christopher said, patting Jaing on the back. "So, specifically, what do we have?"
"Give me two seconds.......Alright. We have everything, basically. The only thing we don't have on the Coalition now are personal communications. Everything else is at our fingertips."
"Excellent. Forward it to the Council. They will be estatic when they see that we've hacked the Coalition databases."
"Already done. Does this mean the fun begins, brother?" Jaing asked.
"Of course. Your back on the front lines again. Have fun," Christopher said, his brother smiling widely.
Chapter 4: This is WarEdit
R.C.S. Invictus, InterGalactic Republic's Flagship, Military Staging Area at Installation 05, Milky Way Galaxy
"Commander, transport ships are already on the way. Between the soldiers on them and the ACUs they carry, you should be able to take on your targets with great ease, as well as being setting up both our Quantum and Warp Gate Networks," said Hierarch Tassadar, leader of the mighty Protoss Empire.
"Thank you, Hierarch. This is much appreciated. My offensive shall begin once they arrive," Christopher said, back on the front lines after a few days back in the Republic capital.
"You better hurry then, Commander. Your offensive is the only one that hasn't gone off yet. They other nine battlegroups have already begun their attacks around the galaxy," Emperor Mengsk of the Terran Dominion said.
"But, please do not be rash, Commander. Remember, twenty-nine of our Council Members are on the front line fighting alongside you," Princess Burke reminded him.
"Of course, your majesty. Signing off," Christopher turned off the comlink before they could respond, hoping to get away from politics for the time being and focus on his offensive. He turned around just in time to see massive amounts of transport ships and other reinforcments warp into the staging area.
"So dear, I guess it's time?" said Alicia Denson, Christopher's Jedi wife.
"Yeah. This part is always one of the worst," he said, his arm around her shoulder, holding her close.
"Come on. Tonight, all your worries go away," she said, pulling him away from the communicator.
"I'm coming, I'm coming," Chris said, laughing.
"Not yet you aren't," Alicia said back, gigiling.
Bridge of the I.C.S. Phoenix, Monarchist Prime, Coalition Territory, Milky Way Galaxy, Four Days Later
The I.C.S. Phoenix and the rest of the Phantom Legion armada exited hyperspace into the orbit of Monarchist Prime, the most populated planet in the Coalition's Outer Colonies. As soon as they exited hyperspace, a New Republic A-Wing Fighter crashed into the Phoenix just below the superstructure.
"Damn, looks like we're late to the party," Ryan said, looking at the massive battle going on over the planet.
"Ry'buir Monarchist Prime Space Control estimates the enemy fleet between 1500 and 2500 combat vessels in orbit and planetside. Enemy ground forces have landed in mass and have set up fully funtional bases on all major continents. Forces are being overwhelmed on multiple fronts," Raynor said from across the room.
"Launch all fighters and fire at will. Raynor, begin to launch all ground forces and meet me at the shuttles," Ryan said as he looked at his Mandalorian helmet, soaking in the last moment of peace he had before his fight started. He put it on and turned around, jogging to the elevator that would take him to one of the ships many hangar bays. Five minutes later, he was in a gunship heading towards the planet, with his personal squad with him. He looked around the gunship, watching the members of Maximus Squad get ready to fight together for the first time in a while. Next to him, Claire cozied up next to him, resting her head on his shoulder while they waiting for landing.
"General, Ghost Squad Saint's gunship is on our starboard side. We have entered atmosphere and are opening doors. Watch for shrapnel from the AA fire," Andre Richardson said, the husband of Lexus and Ryan's newly appointed personal bodyguard, replacing Aleksander after he retired a few months earlier. The gunship doors opened, revealing an open, rocky desert below them littered with soldiers and vehicles.
"Saint, this is Ferran. What is your status?" Ryan asked over his helmet comlink, looking at the gunship flying about twenty meters away from his.
"This is James. We are good so far. Looking forward to-" James said before being interrupted.
"Missile!" yelled the pilot of James' gunship. As soon as the words escaped his mouth, two missiles exploded themselves next to the gunship, nearly destroying it completely. Ryan watched as the gunship carcass began to tip forward and cruise headlong into the rocky ground below.
"James!" Ryan called, recieving no answer besides the buzzing sound of static. "Damnit. God damnit."
"First loss is always the hardest," Claire said, trying to comfort him. Ryan just turned away before looking up at Raynor. "Ray'ika, sitrep. Where are we landing and what forces are there?"
"We're landing at the Forward Operations Base in this sector. Our forces in that area are nearing 12,000 Coalition troops. And at the moment, Zack and Leandra are keeping the area under lock," Raynor said, looking at the ground under them fly past.
"That's good. Should be able to roll over the enemy in the area," Jared said, checking some grenades on his belt.
"That's the bad part. We won't. We are estimating enemy numbers between twenty-five and thirty thousand, not counting air support," Raynor countered.
"Holy shit...." Zack's voice could be heard over the comlinks as they were nearing their landing area.
"Nice to hear from you Zack. You holding up well?" Ryan asked as the ship started to descend.
"For the moment. We're taking long range artillery and sniper fire, though. Wait, hold on," Zack said, putting his hand to his radio for a moment. After a few seconds, his eyes widened and he opened his mouth. "Heads up, incoming air raid!" As he finished saying that, two fighters strafed Ryan's gunship with machine gun fire and flew past them.
"What the hell, are those propeller planes?" Andre yelled, checking himself for shrapnel.
"Yep, they were. These guys like some old-fashioned tech," Leandra said as the gunship landed.
"Tell that to the pilots I flew with at Halo," Zack said, greeting his friends.
"Alright, I need info. Anything," Ryan said walking into the base's control room.
Imperial Republican Military FOB, Monarchist Prime, Milky Way Galaxy
"Supreme Commander, reports say that an enemy commander has landed on the other side of the sector," a clone said, the wind and orange dust blowing against his black and red armor.
"Thank you, Commander Taksony. Are the legions ready for assault?" Christopher said, putting on his Mandalorian helmet.
"Yes sir. The 7th, 9th, 21st, and 327th Corps are ready to attack. Also, General Clarke says that her army is ready to move at any moment," the Commander said to his mentor.
"What about the 501st and the 12th Shock?" Christopher asked.
"The 501st is on our flank, waiting to be deployed just like General Clarke's. The 12th is ready and waiting for us to join them, sir," Taksony said, eager to join the fight.
"Well then, let's join them. Tell Clarke and the 501st to meet up with the others and begin our assault. We shall join up with the 12th and spearhead the attack," Christopher said, getting into an IFV with Taksony.
"Will do sir. Typhoon is requesting a target, sir."
"Tell them to begin attack run five."
"Right away, sir."
Coalition Foward Operating Base, Monarchist Prime
"So, this is what we're dealing with?" Ryan asked.
"Yes, thirty thousand enemy troops about seven miles out," Zack said, looking at the hologram of the battle frield infront of them. As he said that, more holograms began to pop up.
"What's happening?" Claire asked.
"Wait. Enemy forces up to thrity-five thousand. Now forty. Forty-five, fifty...," Zack said, concerned.
"The hell's going on?" Ryan angrily said.
"Enemy forces up to seventy thousand! Mulitple battalions have just come out of cloak and are beginning attack runs!" Zack yelled.
"Oh god," Raynor said as bombs shook the base. "We have multiple targets falling from orbit!"
"Most likely just debris from the space battle," said Serina, Ryan's personal AI that resides in his helmet's computer system.
"I don't think so, all the obje-" as Raynor explained, before being interupted by artillery fire pounding the bases defenses. Annoyed, Raynor continued. "All the objects are one of three configurations. So unless the debris broke off into the same exact shapes, this isn't good. They are on a direct course with the base and should impact us in three minutes."
"That's the same time the first enemy forces should reach the base," Claire said, drawing her gunblade.
"Yep. Let's go, we need to get out there. Enemy forces will be here in seconds," Ryan said, pointing to the dots on the horizon, obviously the enemy army, trudging through the exhaustingly hot desert. As they got down toan area similar to a courtyard, they saw multiple explosions happen near the bases enterance. They looked up and saw ten aircraft fly overhead, seemingly mocking them from the air.