(TLDR at bottom)
“…For the Empire!”
Lieutenant Briar of Hurricane squad’s voice blared through the comm as Gossk and Alric breached the suspect wooden door. Surprised and wounded, the Renian forces stood little chance against the onslaught of the troopers. Clutching wounds and firing desperately, the overwhelmed men soon succumbed to hail of blaster fire from the Imperials, but not before downing an Stormtrooper.
“Clean this mess up.” Lieutenant Briar ordered, one which his squad wasted little time in executing – eager to avenge their critically wounded comrade. “Lieutenant!” Arthur spoke up after the first bolt had already downed a wounded soldier. “We’ve made our point. They…they aren’t worth the resources.” Briar stared at the technician of Cerberus Squad for a moment before Jayden backed up his squad mate up. “They’re not use to us dead. Intelligence saves Imperial lives.”
“Stand down men.” The argument resonated with the Lieutenant, and his men lowered their weapons, much to the relief of the few men who still survived. Briar then lifted his weapon, aimed it at the face of one of the injured men, and pulled the trigger. The man barely had enough time to register the horror of his impending execution, let alone beg. “But we don’t need three.”
Their mission complete, the two squads exited the dilapidated building alongside their two prisoners, and eventually received new orders from Forward.
“Good hunting with you, Cerberus.” Briar offered as he and his men trotted off. A short while later an APC arrived and took The Survivors and their prisoners back.
Things move quickly back at base, and before long The Survivors along with two other squads sit in a conference room with Colonel Ansam and Captain Hollow.
“Native spies have offered us a critical report.” Colonel Ansam announces, before revealing the location of a secret science facility located on the lower half of the planet.
“Until a few days ago, this compound was unknown to us. We have since confirmed its location and initial reports that the enemy is developing a weapon here, a weapon which they believe will turn the tide of the war. You know doubt see where this is going…” With a few more clicks of his datapad the image shifts to display landing spots around the facility. “The mission is simple, men. The primary objective is the destruction of this weapon, that means the destruction of the compound the elimination of any VIPs you encounter.”
Over the next 24 hours, the members of Cerberus Squad prepared themselves. Arthur, having made friends with the techies – Specialist Ravenheart in particular – was presented with a suit of armor.
Meanwhile, Alric and Captain Hollow spoke while outside for a smoke. During the course of this conversation, Captain Hollow revealed that there was some disagreement between himself and Colonel Ansam over the use of the weapon. It seems Ansam believes that the weapon has made its point, and that any further use will only cause unnecessary loss of life over a people they must rule over once this is finished. Captain Hollow disagrees, pointing out that Ansam seems to care about life, “Unless that loss of life is wearing Imperial white, I suppose."
Gosk found himself making friends with some of the Aurorans. Warrant Office Isiah Park of Avalanche Squad asked if Gosk would be willing to teach the Aurorans something about melee combat, since that was something he was known for. Despite being Imperial, the Aurorans had treated Gosk fairly, and so he agreed to help them once this mission was finished.
The next day the three squads departed, each in a different shuttle. The trip was uneventful until they approached the science facility, whereupon the shaking and sounds alerted The Survivors that they were under fire. “Get ready to jump!” the pilot shouted, and just seconds later the squad found itself on the ground, just in time to see Zeta’s shuttle take fire and go down behind some dunes to the north.
With Zeta squad non-responsive and Avalanche squad pinned down due to having the low ground, it fell on Cerberus Squad to silence the base defenses and relieve their comrades. Following Lieutenant Jayden’s lead, the squad managed to advance and disable the defenses on their side of the base. Flanked, the remaining turret turned to face them, only to be disabled by Avalanche squad. Together, the two squads wiped up the defenders, before breaching the facility on opposite ends.
Working methodically, The Survivors took their time, checking the outbuildings first before advancing to the main facility. After a quick examination of the building, Cerberus squad descended down the elevator and into the main area.
The doors opened to reveal a massacre. Avalanche squad is, apparently, a forced to be reckoned with, and is already at work securing the facility. Realizing that they needed to find a pair of keycards or some kind of terminal, to unlock the vault like door in front of them.
Heading to their right, the group entered the “Robotics” section of the lab. From the start it was clear that something was wrong, and the warnings stating that “containment procedures are in place” only confirmed it. The first room the group entered was empty, but it was clear some sort of struggle had taken place. The second room, however, housed a small, child-like robot. For a few moments the two parties appraised one another, before Alric attempted to approach. Almost immediately, however, the group spotted the signs of explosives on the robot, and moving carefully, Alric exited the room and locked the door. Whatever that machine was, it was clear they did not want to find out.
Unfortunately, no such option was given in their next encounter. Continuing down the hallway, following a banging sound, the group emerged at a gruesome sight. The researchers must have fled when they realized they had lost control of their creations, but they did not get far. Dismembered and scattered across the room, the remains of the scientists were now being devoured by a small group of robots, including by one banging on a door at the far end of the hallway. As soon as the machines realized their presence, they turned to face the Imperial squad in unison. Disgusted, the group expended one of its thermal detonators – evaporating some of the remains – before engaging the surprisingly durable robots in combat.
Once the last of the robotic horrors fell, the group located a keycard on one of the remains of the researchers and entered the room, only to be greeted by blaster fire. Terrified and clearly delusional, a researcher wildly shot at them. The blaster shot went wide and the woman, too terrified to steady her hand, dropped her weapon and scrambled to recover it. To their credit, the Imperials attempted to talk the woman down, but to no avail. As she lifted her weapon to take another shot, they put her down.
Working quickly, the group managed to access the the main data terminal within this research wing. Information on the robots – weapons intended to be released, to act autonomously, and to harass and ambush Imperial forces, while using biological matter (read: Imperials) as an energy source – was obtained and downloaded. During this process, the group’s comms came to life:
“Avalanche, Cerberus, this is Zeta. Enemy reinforcements have arrived. We’ve suffered too many causalities from crash and cannot hold our position for much longer. Requesting support.”
Simultaneously, Lieutenant Jayden located something off on the terminal he was working on. While his group directed Avalanche squad to assist with Zeta, he discovered a rogue AI within the system. Moving to capture the AI, Jayden struggled to stay one step ahead of the AI, preventing it from logging him out once it realized the officer was on to him and then preventing it from transferring itself to another division. All it took, however, was a half-second distraction to pull the officer’s attention away from the task at hand for the AI to beat Jayden however, and the entire computer system in the robotics division shut down. Whatever the story was with the AI, it seemed that Cerberus would not find out.
With enemy reinforcements already arriving, the group opted to not break down any of the robots in order to recover any technologically useful parts. Pressed for time, the group moved on to personnel.
- Assault on injured in Nim.
- Mission to assault secret facility where a weapon is being developed to use against the Imperials
– Arthur given armor
– Gosk agrees to train Aurorans in melee combat
– Alric learns of disagreement between Ansam and Hollow
- Assault compound. Zeta squad goes down
- Assault robotics wing. Discover rogue robots and AI. Unable to secure AI.
– Discover that robots were part of program to use biological matter as an energy source. Autonomous assault units capable of sustained action against Imperial Forces.
- Zeta squad pinned down. Avalanche moves to assist.
- Assault personnel wing. Fail to secure terminal, however take one of the directors prisoner.
- Successfully rig reactor to blow
- Successfully evacuate squads