At the heart of the Brentaal system the fabric of reality is fraying. Under the guidance of a force unknown, the wretched claws of Chaos reach out from the depths of the Mist-Beyond to once more grasp the realm of the living. A devastating convergence approaches.
As Chaos’ corruption leaks into realspace and washes over the arid world, the heralding effects of the imminent disaster have begun to show. The dead have risen – and small groups of the living have started to suddenly mutate into violent, bloodthirsty reavers stricken by madness. Brentaalan military forces have mobilized to secure strategic population centers, but ravenous hordes have managed to overrun the city of Vuultin.
After those aboard the I.S.V. Ashaton encountered what was believed to be a Blackwing Virus outbreak aboard the derelict frigate Kantius, they followed the last recorded location in its navlogs to the Brentaal system to discover it in complete disarray. Whatever anomaly is happening in the system has jammed the planet’s communications and scrambled it’s defensive fleet, leaving them helpless and forced to fend for themselves against the horror consuming their world.
Moments before finding their own equipment failing without any apparent cause, the Ashaton managed to relay a distress signal to the Imperial forces on Anaxes. Coruscant has since issued a public advisory and declared a state of emergency in the Brentaal system. Still, it will take time for the central forces of the Unified Imperial Legions and the Grand Imperial Navy to rally and deploy in full force.
In the meantime, civilian vessels and relief groups pour in from neighbouring systems to aid the Brentaalans in their evacuation efforts. Alongside them, mercenaries and the Imperium’s Legions from the Tepasi system arrive to help fight off the threat. Those trapped or forced to bear witness to the carnage taking place in the streets pray for an end to the madness...
...but it's only the beginning.
Hordes of the undead have flooded the streets of Vuultin. Despite the mysterious affliction showing no signs of being transmissible through contact or proximity, hundreds of thousands of Brentaalan citizens have inexplicably turned into mindless, blood-thirsty “zombies”. Put down as many of them as you can while others work to evacuate those who still remain in the city, or until the Unified Imperial Legions arrive. Link up with local resistance fighters or mercenaries, hold the lines with the planetary defense forces and the Imperium’s Tepasi Legions to protect strategic positions.
Although many other cities on Brentaal IV have had temporary success holding out against the swarms, it’s far too late for Vuultin. Defensive lines are collapsing and being overrun at every turn, it’s only a matter of time before it all falls apart. Do whatever you can to aid in the ongoing rescue operations; guide civilians through the streets and out of the city, use your personal craft to shuttle survivors to safety, or coordinate evacuations with arriving relief groups and local forces to utilize the limited resources available. Just get these people outta here!
*Note: the zombies are not actually Blackwing Virus. Infection is non-transmissible.
All will be revealed eventually.
Location: Vuultin City, Parking Garage Roof Objective: Evacuate the Citizens Status: S.O.L.
Ryv watched the world pass by below him as he, along with several dropships, moved to his designated evacuation point. When news reached the Imperium of the chaos upon Brentaal IV, Ryv was deployed along with many squads to collect as much of the city's populace as possible. As the six ships touched down upon the roof of a large-scale speeder garage, those signaling for aid began to crash into the ships. Hundreds of people stood atop the roof, as well as others nearby. Even more, coursed up the floors beneath Ryv's feet to board the vessels to safety. Each of his ships would likely hold fifty comfortably, meaning he and his men would have to beat back the hordes long enough for multiple trips to be made.
Truth be told, Ryv wasn't expecting to come back from this one. His leg still hadn't fully healed from the injury sustained on the Kantius. Beyond that, he hand-selected the men joining him on this particular expedition. None of them were surprised to see the kiffar who led them as they boarded the shuttles, nor were they surprised to see the other faces looking back at them. Ryv chose the battle-hardened few who wouldn't turn their back on the unwinnable. He chose soldiers who made peace with death long before he arrived to the Imperium. He could feel it wafting off them like an overbearing cologne. The act of suicide wasn't always the tying of a noose or overdose on too many meds. Sometimes it was running headlong into an unwinnable fight, knowing there wasn't a way out. You could turn that tale into one of heroism, rather than cowardice.
The ramps of each dropship lowered, allowing the boarding process to truly begin. Dozens of soldiers fanned out to hold defensive positions along the rooftop. Mobile turrets and cover alike were dispatched and positioned to create key chokeholds for the Imperium soldiers and their Jedi captain to hold when the time came. Until then, many of Ryv's men were aiding the boarding process along. Small zip lines were even established with pulley systems to get the trapped civilians from adjacent buildings to their location. Unfortunately, it was a much slower process that only worked to get a half dozen or so across at a time. It did not bode well given the dead were already racing up the lower floors of each structure.
"Sir," a voice rang out from nearby. "The first round of ships are loaded and will be taking flight shortly. It's estimated it'll take three trips to get everyone out of here and to a nearby evac-site with a larger security force."
"Hmm," Ryv watched as the ships took to the air and raced away. It would take ten minutes for them to return, leaving them a minimum of thirty minutes before they could pull out and retreat. "E.T.A. on the horde?"
Location: Vuultin city, appartment complex
Objective: Rescue civillians
By some miracle, an appartment complex had been seemingly spared. Leon had been sent with a small force to evacuate the building via a roof extraction. The lower floors had been sealed off by the inhabitants, but the doors wouldn't last forever. The dropship opened its doors before it touched down, and Leon jumped out ahead of several Imperium soldiers. There were already a few civillians on the roof, waiting.
After a brief discussion with the panicing people, Leon realized that his ship would need to make several trips. There were about two hundred people in the complex, far more than the ship could hold. This was assuming they'd be able to save averyone.
The plan had already been discussed. The team would work top to bottom, moving faster on the top floors with the help of able civillians to get their neighbors moving. Lower floors would be secured before civilians were sent up. The bottom floors were in the most danger, but they had no way to get to them quickly.
Location: Vuultin City, Parking Garage Roof
Objective: Evacuate the Citizens, save the infantryman Ryv
, Leon Gallo
They had forgotten.
The Great Enemy had always been there. It watched from the shadows, searching for an opening through which to spread damnation across the stars. The Sons of Ession and their allies had fought them at the Gate of Chaos ten years ago. Millions of souls had been sent into the maw, hoping to slow the expansion of the archenemy's unholy forces through sheer body count. It was only luck and the Ashla's light that had guided them to a close victory, and then the Sith had come.
One threat was forgotten for another, and the Great Enemy had gone ignored. Now the Imperium would pay for that apathy.
"Am I going to turn into one of them?" The soldier asked. He was a decrepit thing, his arms torn from the sockets, and bloody gouges carved through his breastplate. Bright vitae poured from the gouges, staining the concrete crimson beneath him.
Cedric lingered over the boy who could not have been more than twenty years. The Imperator's presence was well needed her,e but he could trust Ryv
and Leon Gallo
to lead the evacuation for a few minutes. The boy deserved that much.
"I'm not going to let that happen." Cedric assured as he kneeled down alongside the man. His arms had been bound with hastily made wrappings, though there wasn't much that could be done for his chest while the breastplate was still there. Cedric pressed his palm to the boy's forehead.
"H-how?" The solidity with which the soldier had held was beginning to shatter. There was a quaking to his voice, a glossiness in his eyes. The look he gave Cedric reminded the Jedi of a beast caught in a hunter's trap. It was terror, acceptance, despair, and agony encapsulated in a single glare. It broke the Jedi's heart.
"Just..." his brow furrowed. "Just stay focused on me son. Look at my face." The boy obliged, looking to Cedric for some sort of an answer, like a child looking to a parent for guidance. It only further solidified Cedric's conviction.
"I'm going to try something." The boy's head lulled slightly, but his eyes remained open. He was fading. Without any further ado, Cedric withdrew his gauntlets, and pressed his palm's to the boy's chest. "The Ashla is with us brother. We've got you."
Cedric turned to shout at Ryv
. "Keep them moving. Let me know when you need me at the front. This man's going to die if I leave him like this." A pause, "I have faith in you Ryv." He added, heavy emphasis placed upon the words.
His eyes drifted shut as he delved into the depths of the empyrean, stretching his senses far beyond that of the physical. The boy was a fading whimper, a tiny island threatened by the rising tide of the Great Ocean. He focused past the spirit, seeing the internal workings of the soldier's ruined body within his mind's eye. One of the lungs was shredded, the ribs were shattered, and the heart struggled to beat. Lacking any extensive training in healing beyond minor wounds, Cedric forced the heart to pump utilizing telekinesis, and began to force air into the one remaining lung the boy by manipulating the elements themselves. Performing both tasks at the same time was particularly draining, but Cedric would have to manage.
A hint of lucidity returned to the youth's eyes. It was better than nothing. "Ashla guide me," Cedric prayed under his breath. "Don't let this boy die. Help me save him, please." He begged of the goddess.
Location: City Barracks and Arms Depot Companions: Small Battle Group of the 202nd Legion
Zombies. Bronze hated zombies. They were far more terrifying in their many forms in the real galaxy than any fictional source had ever made them out to be. Seeing what had once been intelligent emotional beings reduced to primal hunger and rage was something you didn't just forget overnight.
"Hold!" he'd shout as he and his troops would be positioned outside the City Barracks and Arms Depot slaughtering the never-ending horde of the "undead". The depot was key in the continued resistance against the hordes. Weapons, ammunition, food, and supplies for survivors and even a couple hundred survivors were all behind him and needed defending. The rhythm the slugger made by pushing his shoulder back with each slug launched into the wall of flesh was almost like a drum beat, and with each flash, he'd squint a little harder, with each corpse that fell he'd gain just a micro amount of hope that maybe they would accomplish their goal, that was until he heard a click and the drumbeat would stop. "Chit!" he'd hiss and he'd glance to the side as his fellow troopers would also begin to reload, his eyes shooting back to the very quickly approaching hoard. "Legion! Fall back! We'll block the entry with their corpses!"
He had no idea why the 202nd hadn't sent more than his battle group, a measly 60 troops.. he would have to do with what he had. Sure the auxiliary of local militia and survivors who had picked up a blaster were welcome, but they were nothing compared to the finely oiled machine that was the 202nd. His legion would fall back, firing as they went until they took defensive positions within the main entry hall, flipping tables, taking cover behind counters, pillars, anything that could get between them and the steady approach of the damned.
With a press of a button and a pneumatic hiss the massive and heavy magazine of his rifle would be ejected into the ground. With a smooth movement perfected by years of practice and muscle memory, he'd slide another magazine into the rifle and bring it up to his shoulder. Breathe... breathe.. breathe.. he'd keep reminding himself as he waited for the creatures to close the distance, yet faster than he could blink they'd begin pouring through the doors, so many trying to enter they jam each other and begin to trample and crush one another. The roar of gunfire would once again start up, amplified from being in an enclosed space. Hopefully, help would arrive soon he thought as the bodies began to pile up near the entrance.
The events from the Kantius still played in Amaris's mind. The worst scene was when that officer knocked her down, and took a big ole' bite out of her collar bone. It was healing, at least, and no infections were present. The pulsing had stopped. And the dark veins were almost gone. It'd leave a scar. Just what the Felacatian needed - a scar of human teeth biting into her collar.
She was just glad the icky green tinge in her eyes were gone - now clear, with her regular blue eyes.
Amaris gently traced the wound with her fingers before her she balled her hand into a fist. What was happening in their little corner of the galaxy? The ship had been an isolated incident, but now a planet? An entire city getting swarmed by zombies? It almost made her sick. And the usual chirpy, happy woman was much more quiet, much more concerned, and much more worried.
But, that didn't stop her from doing what she had to do. Find civilians. Get them out. Mow down the zombies.
She wanted to avoid turning into her spiked, feline form as long as possible - mostly in the event that she got overrun, or others got overrun. The distance between her spikes meant that a thin humanoid could generally squeeze between them. A last resort, but a powerful last resort if needed.
"Gala, this is insane," she muttered as she prepped for another jump - this time onto the building next to the City Barracks & Arms Depot. One... Two... Jump! Her feet landed against the roof with a thud, where she took a minute to catch her breath.
"Looks like they could use some help," she muttered as she aimed her blaster and started firing into the horde of dead. Speaking into her comms to Bronze/the soldiers, "How are you guys holding up?" Back to Gala, "Maybe we can clear the back? It doesn't look as bad there. Or if we made a bunch of noise elsewhere, it might distract them away for a bit." She was practically spitballing at this point, looking to the more experienced Gala for direction.
Blue eyes peered over the building, her heart pounding in her chest. Either way, they were going to get eaten alive in that building if something didn't happen or change soon.
Location: Vuultin City, Parking Garage Roof Objective: Evacuate the Citizens Status: S.O.L.
Let's be honest, Cedric
was needed at the front the moment he stepped away. His sudden arrival brought a resurgence of hope within Ryv's unit. That hope had even carried them through the first wave of zombies that broke against the Imperium wall. The various soldiers had fanned out and laid wave after wave of suppressing fire on the monsters who tried to work their way up to roof the parking garage. The mobile cover provided locked most of the track done into a series of chokepoints for Ryv and Cedric to hold. While they collectively held down the first major choke, a small number of the creatures broke past and were mostly put down. One managed to engage a younger soldier around Ryv's age and the poor kid's arms had been torn off before the creature was broken by the Imperator.
With the stronger half of the duo busy, Ryv was nearly swarmed over. The second wave of dropships had already claimed its passengers and was en route to the nearest refugee camp. That left another twenty or more minutes before they could leave. Twenty more minutes Ryv would spend wading ankle-deep in corpses. Two small mounds had grown on either side of him as he fought tooth and nail to hold his ground, but he was being pushed back. The creatures were barely slowed by their dead companions, mostly just crawling over them to assail the young kiffar or push past into the firing line. If it weren't for the two auto-turrets cutting down the groupings that ambled past Ryv, the roof likely would've been swarmed and all of them killed. The combined abilities of the tech, Imperial soldiers, and two Jedi were holding them off, but it was drawing to an end.
Ryv's body was getting heavier as his muscles ached. The force was growing distant as his ability to concentrate on a calm mind was overwhelmed by the pain and mental weight of cutting down so many innocents. There was no justice in the Imperium's actions, only a need to survive. The living were prioritized over the lost and it pulled Ryv down. His eyes stung as they welled up with tears that soon ran down his cheeks, cutting swathes through the built-up grime and gore.
Location: Vuultin City Objective: Coordinate teams headed into the city, respond to priority calls. Status: Yelling into the commlink.
It was times like this that made Jack wish he had stayed away from the mercenary life, he always seemed to find himself knee deep in the poodoo, with things getting worse whenever he looked into it, Jack took the civilian evacuation job expecting riot suppression at the worst, the little detail of a rogue bio-weapon loose in the city seemed to have not made it's way into the hastily written up job posting, so here he was. Jack looked at the holo map on his armour's wrist mounted computer, watching the teams that were going into the city, the 22nd Besiegers were hardly the ideal troops for this, of course neither were his 701st Wilderness Battalion, city fighting was to close quarters for their training but at least they had the situational maneuverability for this kind of fighting. Jetpacks for kark's sake, that's really why Jack wanted the 701st, the 22nd just had the Bantha Engineering Tank, which was fast couldn't fly half way up a building to start taking sniper shots off of a flag pole to thin a horde, Jack could use the force to jump around, but the other members of the squad that was with him couldn't, though the flame projector and grenade launcher combination were good for cleansing an infestation, blow everything to a bloody pulp, and burn anything that was left.
The commlink in Jack's helmet crackled with a call for support, staticy and garbled, not even understandable, but the comms equipment was able to get a location and clean up a couple words to make the meaning clear enough to commit troops to the action. Jack walked out into the assembly area and started barking orders to his troops. Companies 6 and 21 would mount up in the Banthas, and logistical unit 16 would roll out empty, just drivers and hull gunners, leaving room to carry evacuees and injured out. The offensive would be of limited effect on culling the hordes, but it would also open up a temporary avenue for civilians that were already moving to escape as well.
A single transmission was made towards the entrapped troops and civilians that made the excursion's target, given by the Besieger's comm's headquarters. "Prepare to revive support, E.T.A. 20 minutes."
Kantius had only been a missed sleep ago. As soon as the nav logs recovered by the paranoid Jedi boy, Ryv
, had been read - they pointed to Brentaal IV. Woefully, not soon enough. The team had been redeployed under extreme measures and extreme compensation. Which was why she was here. This city had no strategic value, and she cared little for the whelps that wailed to the skies for salvation - despite her heritage's affinity for those around them. Unless those were paying, Gala fretted little.
"You're telling me." Gala agreed as she thrust herself forward after the feline that'd been attached to her hip since Anaxes. Amaris' talent for leaping across the void was far superior to the Mirilian. Agility was a strength of hers, but not swinging between gutters! While Amaris landed quite elegantly on her two feet, Gala landed with a death grip that made the edge of the roof curl as she grunted to hoist herself up and over.
Fun times vaultin' in Vuultan.
Beneath them, hordes belching animalistic hisses and screeches echoed. They were clawing and attempting to reach anything that was not similar to their constitution, and slowly but surely they were realizing they could clamber over one another to greater heights. The emerald warrior took pause at her newfound perch, and re-holstered her assault rifle from over her back to cradled in her arms. She looked through its scope to the onslaught that was attempting to wall crawl, and opened fire.
Splatters of crimson and the shattering of bone and rotting flesh was her reward for wild aim. And about fourteen seconds of silence before more beast-like humanoids came to avenge the fallen. And seek new flesh. "Kark this."
Amaris' observation about someone needing help somewhere cued an eye roll from the impatient soldier. Captain Obvious over here with the pointy ears. It was sort of hard to think with all the screaming, and the idea generating. It seemed any stall they made was temporary. She was silent for a few seconds, and looked skyward at the incoming shuttles that were dropping in and out to pick up healthy citizens. With a sigh, she stood and slung the rifle back under her armpit, reaching instead to her hips to withdraw an ovoid object. She turned it over in her hand, lifting it to her teeth and un-clicking something before chucking it a good distance from their rooftop and the trajectory that had caught her accomplice's eyes. A few heart-thudding seconds passed before fire erupted in the sky to consume a swath of rotting flesh below. The noise was attractive, as was the heat, and it peeled a few away from trying to clamber up to the women.
Gala didn't like giving orders. As much as it paid, she didn't like the responsibility. Too unambitious for that sort of glory.
Maybe if they could get closer to a legion, they could fall under the guise of someone else's command.
"Both. We do both I guess. We'll go to the back, draw them to us and... try to survive the process until bigger guns arrive."
Location: Vuultin City, Parking Garage Roof
Objective: Evacuate the Citizens, save the infantryman Ryv
, Leon Gallo
, Jack Anderson
Cedric had fought more losing battles than most. One could feel it in the air when the tide began to turn. It was always a slow revelation that struck each member of the defense of its own accord, and that collective knowing would come to dominate the atmosphere of the group, Valor would be replaced with grim purpose, and fear choked down with service.
As Cedric willed the dying boy's heart to beat, he realized that change was falling over the Imperium's defenders. He waved on one of the last remaining medics at the exfill point. "Try and stabilize him," was all the Jedi Master could manage. The moment the medic was down by the crippled soldier, Cedric was rising to his feet.
The boy might die without his assistance, but they were all dead if nothing changed here.
The Blade of Ruusan roared to life as he marched up to the front, its hiss cutting over the cacophony of gunfire and screams. Hundreds of possessed corpses overflowed from the mouth of the garage. They'd be overwhelmed shortly.
"Take a break." A firm hand gripped Ryv's shoulder before moving to pull the boy backward, the Jedi Master putting himself between the Imperium's forces and the encroaching horde.
Violence tore from the creatures' throat as they charged him. Cedric's eyes twisted shut as he marched to meet the beasts. With a fling of his arm, the Blade of Ruusan soared from his open hand, carving a cerulean line of destruction as it cleaved through limbs, chests, and any other meat that dared to shamble toward the survivors. Nearly a dozen of the closest creatures fell before the blade returned to Cedric's outstretched hand, his features tightened with grim purpose.
The Jedi's eyes opened as the rest of the horde caught up. He caught the first by the throat, lifting it clean off the ground before hurling it into another glob of slathering beasts, forcing them to the ground. Another was decapitated with a swift saber strike. Four others were reduced to twitching limbs Cedric simply span his blade in front of him, walking forward to fan through the beasts with ease.
It couldn't be maintained forever, but time to exfil was far more important than Cedric's physical wellbeing. He simply dipped into the currents of the Great Ocean, allowing his body to move autonomously of his spirit. He was a living weapon of the Ashla, nothing more, and nothing less.
Several rotary cannons spin to life and tear through a charging mob as the raider corvette does a low pass along a street. Things had been hectic from the moment they arrived in the system, leaving very little time to group and plan an effective strategy. So far things had been purely reactionary, and it didn't look like that would be changing anytime soon. The arrival of the Tepasi Legions and other off-world supporters was welcomed in and of itself, but the droid was thankful for the bigger picture it painted; the Imperium's forces at Anaxes must have received their distress signal.
Help was coming, they just had to keep holding their lines and getting people away. Unfortunately, even that was proving to be easier said than done.
<<Redirect rotary fire to bearing 145 and bank right,>> Dak's voice commands from over the open comm-line to the bridge. The corvette pulls up abruptly and pitches hard to redirect itself at it's current speed, pulling heavy Gs for the organic crew members even with the inertial dampeners activated. In the hangar bay, the droid stands unaffected -- magnetically locked near the edge of an open loading ramp to stare out at the chaos below them. He watches as the rotary cannons run a second pass on the horde, further diminishing their numbers.
Despite the heavy losses the swarms advance unfazed. The bodies serve as nothing more than temporary obstacles for the charging horde to clamor over. All regard for their own lives and well-being were gone, only a fiery rage and unquenchable hunger remained to fuel the violent husks.
<<Survivors, bearing 32, 7th floor,>> Dak snaps out of his contemplation to redirect his attention to the given compass location, quickly spotting the apartment complex that was being referenced. From the balcony of an apartment, several humanoids can be seen frantically waving their hands trying to get their attention; Dak notes at least 5 others through the window, cowering within.
The Ashaton passes the building at it's current speed, the powerful ion engines rattling the sides of the the skyscrapers and clearly throwing the civilians into a fit of panic and helplessness, momentarily believing themselves to be abandoned. After enough time to safely decelerate, the Nox-class pulls up above the skyline and curves it's path wide, looping back around to assist.
Dak raises his arm and gestures to several SIA operatives who are buckled into seats near the loading ramp, giving them a hand signal to prepare themselves. <<Approximately 13 civilians present. Prepare for extraction,>> the droid adds over their internal comms, the noise from the wind and cannon fire through the open loading bay making it impossible to communicate verbally. As the Ashaton closes in, the operatives unbuckle themselves and activate their own mag-boots, carefully making their way to the ramp alongside the DAC, Sabrewasps at the ready in case of an emergency.
Location: Vuultin City, Parking Garage Roof Objective: Evacuate the Citizens Status: S.O.L.
If it weren't for Cedric's grip and command, Ryv likely would've continued to hack and slash through the endless sea of swarming dead. By the time he stumbled past the line of soldiers he fell to the ground. His body ached and his arms felt heavier than ever before. The pristine, songsteel lightsaber hilt rolled a few feet away before gently bouncing off of one of the civvies boots and stopping. When it was lifted and held out to the padawan, Ryv pushed himself up and moved closer. He took the lightsaber back and offered a reassuring smile before squeezing the younger child's shoulder. Without even thinking, he assured the child and those around everything would be okay. There was no guarantee it was true, but he had to hope. If he gave up that hope there was nothing for them to hold onto. So, he held on. A wave of positivity rolled off of him, washing over those citizens and soldiers alike. The silent citizens came to life, organizing who would board the ships and who would stay behind. The soldiers, on the other hand, straightened both their shoulders and their aim. Cedric would find the swarm breaking around him just enough that he wasn't struggling to move about anymore.
When Ryv looked away from the dropships to the nearby roof his eyes widened. The swarm had made it up to the roof and were clawing their way through the crowd. Hundreds would be slaughtered in minutes unless he could do something. Pushing his way towards the nearest zipline, he attached a cable to the line and looked to the nearest soldier.
"I'm going across. Hold the goddamn line, do you understand? I'm going to get as many people across as I can. If you can spare a few riflemen, that be great. If not, get these S.O.Bs on the ship," with that, Ryv shot across the line and landed on the opposite building. He began to push himself through the crowd, screaming orders to the group. "Stay calm! I'm going to get you out of here!" that was very much a lie and he knew it. It just didn't matter anymore as he broke through the civilians. A verdant glow washed over the horde and innocents alike as Ryv crashed into the wave of infected creatures. His blade flashed from left to right, tearing through the fleshy mass. Once more, the dead piled up around him but he did not stop. He moved about the roof in an attempt to stem the flow. He could hear the sounds of dying innocents behind him, but they were dying slower, which was all he could do.
Across the street where Cedric and his men held out, the third and final run was beginning. Hundreds were flooding into the ships, mostly vacating the roof of civilian personnel. More arrived from Ryv's new battleground, but the supposed evac-ships soon to arrive could potentially get them all. He only had to hold out long enough for the men to get as many across as possible before he was swarmed.
Location: South Vuultin city, apartment complex
Objective: Rescue civillians
Most of the top floor had already left for the roof by the time Leon and his small force had arrived. With just a few more minutes, the transport was full of refugees and was taking off. Leon stood amdist the growing number of refugees on the the roof, desperatly trying to calm them.
"Why do they get to go but not us?"
"You gonna leave us here to die?"
"Listen! My men and I are doing our best, but there' only so much room on our transport. Getting you guys to safety is our number one priority, and our transport will come back. Unfortunatley the Imperium's resources are stretched thinly right now and this is the best that we can manage."
Leon's words helped, but not enough. More and more civillians began to flood the rooftop and Leon had to order many to wait in the top floor for the transport. At least the horde hadn't managed to break in yet, but it was only a matter of time until they did. To make matters worse, a hysteric woman had just burst forth from the crowd, demanding to see him.
"Please, you have to help! My son was downstairs when this all started!"
"Ma'am, please calm down. We're doing our best. Why was he down there, and how old?"
Leon did his best to wuestion the woman, and soon her reports were confirmed by three other mothers.
"It was for a friend's party. H-he's only 10, and-and there were eight kids there, I think....The third floor. Yes, I do have the address..."
The third floor just became much, much more important.
Location: Vuultin City Objective: Rescue team and civilians caught on parking garage Status: Doing sick drifts an an armoured vehicle
Jack stuck his head of the transport compartment of the Bantha Engineering Tank, the damned things were always full of exhaust fumes no matter how ventilated or sealed the damn things were, fumes got in and stunk the compartment up, it was probably the worst flaw of the machine that didn't actually have any effect it's use.
"Fracking brace!" Jack shouted down into the fighting compartment as the Engineering Tank as the dozer blade caught the edge of a crashed civilian ground car, spending it spinning off into the sidewalk and clearing room for the other vehicles to pass in behind it. The armoured vehicle shook like mad scrambling it's passengers around, mostly no worse for wear. The high output repeating blasters lanced their bright scarlet energy out at every zombie they found though occasionally a horde would simply be too large to be cut down at range and the Engineering Vehicles would simply plow through them, pulping the infected beneath their treads into a fine paste that could be cleansed with a flamethrower later.
Jack checked the computer on his wrist again they were close, very close to the group. Jack got on the comms to let the other forces know about his arrival "Oi! You nerf headers feel like directing some of your civilians down to ground level, I got some kriffig transports inbound."
As the finally arrived at the bottom of the building and found the problem, the horde at the base of the tower was absolutely massive, fortunately between the dozer blades and Jack's force abilities pushing them back far enough to make a temporary green zone to evacuate anyone left on the building. Jack got on top of vehicle hanging on to the small cargo crane on the vehicle using the force to push back any of the horde that tried to climb up on top of the vehicles as some of his troops started moving into the surrounding buildings to clear them room by room. The tanks were being used as a physical barrier and the singe blaster on each was cutting down the dead as quickly as possible, though not fast enough to make this a sustainable position.
"Chit chit chit chit!" Bronze would hiss as he fumbled another magazine into his weapon. Civilians were already running carts of the magazines from the back rooms to the troopers upfront, keeping them steadily supplied. Just as Bronze was about to pull the trigger a feminine voice would ring out over the coms. How was he doing? How was he doing? "I'm knee-deep in zombie intestines and steadily running out of ammo. How're you hun?" He'd reply casually and with a smirk just before his weapon would light up unloading another full round of ammunition into the approaching horde. It was clear now that the creatures were smart enough to not all die next to the exit.. or maybe they were moving too fast.. it was all just a blur of bullets and bodies right now.
"Fine biters. You asked for it." He'd groan, reaching down into his belt of various goodies and procuring a thermal detonator, holding it over his head "Legion! 'nades!" He'd shout to the troopers who could hear him who would follow suit. Soon he and his brethren would chuck their volley of metal orbs over the heads of the zombies, most out of the windows to make a dent in the horde outside but a few landing near the entrance and windows.
In the orchestra of swearing, snarling, hissing, and gunfire a new sound would enter. The bass. A dozen or so small explosions would ring out almost in perfect unison destroying a large swathe of creatures outside and damaging some of the inner support for the building, caving in the entrance and windows, creating a rubble barrier between the troopers and the still zombies outside. Quickly dispatching what few remained inside, the troopers would rush the rubble in order to gain the high ground before their opponents could, a master strategy, one that couldn't possibly fail. Bronze would join his siblings on the new ramparts and begin reigning chaos down on the zombies as they began to clamber up the rubble.
Location: Vuultin City, Parking Garage Roof Objective: Evacuate the Citizens Status: S.O.L.
There was only flesh.
Wherever Ryv looked, he saw only bodies lurching closer to him. Corpses were piled up to his knees at this point, making movement nearly impossible. He knew he couldn't stop. As long as he pushed somewhere he had the potential to survive. He climbed atop the nearest mound and managed to finally gain enough ground to see around him. Bodies swarmed towards him from all directions, the closest already clawing, biting, and pulling him down from the manmade hill. The only advantage presented to the young kiffar was the distinct lack of thought necessary in where or how to swing. Everywhere his green bladed saber struck, corpses fell and inhibited the others behind them. They weren't slowed for long, but it was enough of a reprieve he could at least think.
Some level of his senses returned to him, reminding him of the people he crossed over to protect. His gaze flickered over to the adjacent building where the Imperium soldiers continued their fight. A few dozen managed to get across in the time Ryv provided them. He didn't need to look where the masses initially stood. They were dead and buried beneath the swarm, even as it surged closer to him. In his contemplation, he made a mistake, one that cost him his balance. The padawan stumbled backward as his saber went wide, only to meet the outstretched claws and teeth of the infected. Unable to fight back, Ryv went down beneath the horde, his body and blade disappearing beneath the squirming sea. He kept enough of his senses to maintain a tight grip on his lightsaber, but it wasn't too much help in that instance. Knowingly or not, the creatures pinned the smaller form of Ryv down, his lightsaber useless.
His amber gaze was locked on the last inkling of light poking through the horde as it fell upon him. While his jacket and bodysuit offered a modicum of protection, he could tell it wasn't quite enough. Jagged and broken fingernails bit into his cheek, throat, and arms. Half a dozen sets of teeth were tearing into his flesh at any given moment. Agony surged through every fiber of his being as fear crashed off of him in waves. He screamed out in pain and terror as he struggled against his fleshy prison. Neither the force or his body answered his call. And suddenly, that all changed.
Warmth drained from the air as Ryv's desperation peaked. Strife burst outward as his body moved nearly on its own. A telekinetic wave beyond his normal capabilities exploded from him, sending dozens of bodies rocketing off the roof. The padawan stood, the epicenter of the powerful display, and lifted his saber. Blood ran from split and torn flesh, marking the wounds left behind. His body continued moving towards the edge, seemingly uninhibited by the mass of wounds marking his frame. As more of the infected raced closer, Ryv reached out. Lightning arched from his fingertips and blew some apart while others fried and fell away. His eyes burned a violet color, marking the corrupted touch of the dark side.
Without thinking, the kiffar raced to the ledge and jumped. He soared across the open air before crashing into the initial evac-site. His body slid across the roof and slammed into one of the auto-turrets. He pushed himself to his feet, only for the unnatural power to slip away. He fell to one knee and sobbed quietly. His arms wrapped around his knees, hugging them close.
It was in conflict that men came to know their true selves.
The survivors atop the roof of the parking garage were certainly showing their true colors. Ammunition among the men was beginning to grow short, and the liberal use of the auto turrets was forced to be more restrictive. Where once there hand been a disciplined firing line, now there was a disorganized mass of soldiers wielding spent rifles and vibroswords. Some of the civilians had taken up the arms of the dead, firing wildly into the throng of bodies in hopes of slowing the tide.
Cedric paid little mind to any of it. His thoughts were empty, his purpose clear. They would either fight on until the transports arrived, or they didn't and it wouldn't be his problem anymore.
A plate-bound fist crunched the skull of a screaming cadaver: the fall of a sabaton reduced the chest of another into a mass of pulped flesh, blood, and bone. His free arm waved wildly, the lightsaber it held carving through the creatures anytime they drew close.
Something shifted in the empyrean. A moment of panic shot through the Imperator, shattering his focus and allowing one of the approaching creatures to tackle him to the ground, his lightsaber clinking away uselessly. The Jedi roared as he hurled the beast off, crashing to his feet in a shoulder charge that sent the closest two cadavers crashing backward.
He had a responsibility to holding the line. He also had a responsibility to see to the source of his primal panic - Ryv
. The two convictions warred with one another as Cedric warred with the legion of the damned. A creature lunged; Cedric ducked beneath it, rising upward rapidly to deliver an elbow strike to the chin that snapped the creature's neck on impact, the monster slumping lifelessly to the ground as the Jedi withdrew.
It was around that time that Cedric heard the telltale cracks of blaster cannons thundering from below. A large portion of the horde span about, screaming toward the source at the base of the parking garage. In their momentary shift of attention, the defenders quickly dispatched the creatures that retained the attack, allowing for a moment of reprieve.
"Oi! You nerf headers feel like directing some of your civilians down to ground level, I got some kriffig transports inbound." Jack Anderson
snapped over the comms.
Given a brief moment of peace, Cedric commed back. "There's a larger horde within the building coming for you now. Don't get yourselves caught on both sides."
He quickly whirled about, a hand reaching out to call his lost lightsaber back to his hand. "Need a medic!" He snapped off as he jogged up to Ryv
. "Padawan," he lowered down to one knee, his voice steadying as he willed himself not to let his exhaustion show on his face. "You sit out from hereon. You did your duty," it was difficult to find the right words when there was no time to think. "You gave your all. More than anyone could have asked of you. Time to rest now." The Essonian reached out to place a hand on his student's shoulder, giving it a firm squeeze before rising to his feet. "I need to rally what soldiers we have. There's a unit below and they're about to get smashed from the beasts that were going after us."
Amaris crouched along the edge of the roof, relying mostly on her heightened senses. Perhaps she could identify something that could help those down there or at least help her and Gala to figure a way to help them.
The noise, though, was exhausting to sift through. Between the bombs, gunfire, and general screaming, she couldn't get a good read on anything down there. With a sigh, she stood back up right in time to see a very dramatic eye roll from Gala. Amaris laughed, nervously, as she knew exactly why the eye roll occurred. "I know, I know," she muttered as she started aiming into the crowd of zombies and began firing off.
Whoever was in the building was alive, though, at least based on the voice from her comms. Oh. Yeah, maybe that wasn't the best question. A nervous giggle escaped her lips. Yeah, he had a point. Seemed pretty calm about her question, at least. She cleared her throat after a second, "Good, just planning on being your hero."
... Why did she say that? A gulp as she gave a quick, awkward glance to Gala. Amaris definitely prepared for another eye roll to get thrown at her. A quiet groan at her social ineptitude as she placed her hands over her ears as the explosions from Gala and Bronze's weapons vibrating the air. The fur on her ears and tail puffed briefly as the ringing in her ears heightened before returning to normal.
"Alright," she muttered as she took a breath - and ran, jumping across the building's rooftop and gently landing on her feet as she began to shoot at the zombies at the back of the building.
Location: Vuultin City // Traipsing ungracefully over rooftops // Going to cover Bronze's backside at the City Barracks and Arms Depot Working with:Amaris Tanenat//Bronze Heroes
While Amaris was talking on the phone to boys, Gala was assessing the fatality of their situation. It didn't look good for them.
She perched her knuckles on her hips and delivered another painstakingly slow eye roll to the Felacat's
declaration of intended heroism. "Ugh, for feth's sake.."Her companion already looked sheepish enough about it, and as hardened as the soldier was she couldn't necessarily fault the woman for attempting to establish some semblance of levity in the grim situation.
The blossoming of fires amidst the flesh drew the attention of their enemies, and her own. The rapid succession of several explosions was near deafening and she had to concentrate on their objective so as not to fall victim to sensory overload.
Then they were back to navigating between the gutters and shingles of rooftops. Patience, fatigue and nimbleness were tested to their limits on this mission that seemed to have no end in sight. She watched as the younger woman took off to fulfill her promise, and assessed the energy required from her to accomplish a similar feat. Was there an easier way to do that? She would have said I'll cover you, kid but her accomplice was already off. Gala quickly ushered herself to the edge of the building they were currently on, and kneeled, poising herself at the corner and looking toward the back of the building from the existing vantage point. Once more, she picked up her weapon and aimed to open fire at the few that were snarling near the back of the building. Like a prowling pack, the shells of humanoids clawed around the base of the building. The salvo she discharged was noisy against the duracrete, and the wails produced by her successful hits.
This medley drew the attention of a few bystanding zombies who'd not figured out what to do with their time. Activated by the audio, their limbs pumped and necks cranked to give attention to the noise behind the building. The first attempt at drawing attention away from the 202 Legion so they could get better ground. Once they were on the same rooftop level, Amaris, Gala and the guys could regroup.
It wasn’t the stress that was nagging at her nausea. It was the obscene sea of rotting flesh that rolled and ebbed below with all the caterwauling that challenged the sound of the engines that were taking off from the hangar behind her.
There were vague conversations filtering through the shared channel she could hear broadcasted from Frank - the Imperium’s communications seemed to be the only ones working here. They’d have to fix that, too.
You’re a Jedi. You can do this. Jedi don’t do the fear thing. No fear.
This wasn’t true fear, not in the sense that challenged the Jedi code - it was more akin to disgust and revolt, and feel the shiver of...yuck! She contested a shudder that crept through her spine and raced through to her fingertips, giving her hands a shake as if freeing herself from a coagulated coat of grossness all over. Her own senses were compounded while in the same city, that ethereal tether distracting her with the despair that Cedric was feeling for their comrades, she could feel that chilling tremble in her bones. It was part of being a Jedi she didn’t like. All the awareness that came with it, especially in a proximity that was contained within a city’s walls.
A translucent bubble projected a barrier between her skin and the onslaught of beast minded corpses that snarled and clawed. “I can’t keep this up much longer!” Through clenched teeth, she spoke backwards to the civilians that were aiding with their local transports. As serendipity would have it, she’d managed to fall into sorts of a local manufacturing group that worked on smaller vessels for the shipyards. Prototypes before mass production - resulting in a handful of random models that were outfitted to support the evacuation. The neighbourhood had mostly been concealed and taken off, save for a few stragglers. Loske was shaking at this point, the bubble between herself and doom starting to wain from stress and fatigue.
“I got a pair of birds I’ve been working on in my warehouse, you can put them to use. They’re armed for maybe one good run. They’re down in the furthest level.” the mechanic confirmed, jabbing a thumb over his shoulder while being shoved to the side by a terror-driven citizen.
Finally, some good news! With some encouragement, the blonde sought to exchange a glance with a training pilot, Steve Holt