Join Date: May 2005
Halo-The Ark, fanfic
I started this a few days ago, and here is a draft of part of the first chapter, here it is....
“Lets MOVE IT recruits you aren’t being paid by the hour!” Private James Hawk heard, through his heavy raspy breathing, the steady loud beating of his heart as tried to keep the painful repetition up, left right left right. The harsh summer sun of Reach was baking down on the light gray gravel pit and reflected brightyl off the light concrete of the low square building they were coming up on, 100 yards. 50, 20 the markers on the side off to the side of the “track” passed.
After what seemed like an impossible run, barefoot over the sharp gravel, the dozen recruits finally reached the structure. Most of the recruits were doubled over, panting to catch their breath, I cant imagine even attempting this when I got here” Hawk thought, as he was gasping to catch his breath, in the hot still air.
The run was a “light” 1 mile trip over the gravel, used to toughen up the recruits, and kept as a surprise for the later part of their training, When most of the recruits thought the hard part was over, and all the “cool” parts of training were coming, despite the warnings, that “This ain’t no summer camp, your not here for fun” bellowed from many a loud drill sergeant.
“Good job recruits, time for school!”, Sergeant Ramirez bellowed, coming down from the platform that overlooked the whole area, and he opened the door to the concrete structure with a few quick keystrokes at the panel. Some of the recruits looked around at each other, exchanging small grins of relief, as they walked quickly inside. “Hey Hawk!”, James knew the voice, it was Jin’s”. James hung up from going inside and waited for So. “couldn’t keep up again eh?” James joked, “Hey bud no fair you’re bigger!”. James did tower over Jin by more than a foot, but So was tough, quick and smart, and unnaturally brave, would make a great Marine someday. So’s thoughtful dark eyes glowed beyond his dust covered face, which on first sight, would make you realize that he possessed a logical, calm approach to any situation.
As they stepped inside the bunker a blast of cool, climate controlled air hit the recruits. They knew the routine, they took their seats in coolly metallic chairs surrounding a large round table, with a holo-projector visible in the center. To James right, sat So, to his left, Takota. Takota simply nodded at the two of them, typical of his many thought, overly serious nature. The officers liked that, they were here to literally defend the human race, not to joke around like the kids they left behind when they signed up.
The two dozen seats around the glass table filled quickly in a more or less predictable pattern. When basic started, James remembered, they all couldn’t even fit in this room, now more than half of them have left. James heard the metal door swoosh shut across the room, and Sergeant Ramirez took his normal position at the silver control panel, hit a few blinking green buttons, almost instantly their “teacher” appeared on the table.
The “teacher” was actually a almost brand new AI, Ajax. He was designed with almost the singular purpose of educating new Marines and Sailors. He could do all the things all basic AI’s could do, lightning fast computations, fly Pelican, or a Longsword, and do some basic infiltration, but “he” was a library of information with the latest in unclassified information about Covenant troops, ships, weapons, and tactics. His psychological programming could break through even the toughest student, and was better than any human.
The recruits watched as the AI walked around the room, binary code running up and down his chosen form of a ancient Greek Hoplite. “Good afternoon students, have a productive morning workout?” Ajax’s rough voice went through the room. “lets get to business, shall we? Today we learn about the enemies you will surely have to engage in combat shortly”.
Most of the recruits attention was instantly snatched, and they all snapped up in their seats, eager to see, and learn about the Covenant they heard about. They all knew the nicknames, Grunts, Jackals, Elites. The rumors flew around the barracks, despite the best efforts of the commanders to prevent it, as only rumors can travel.
After Ajax caught the attention of the two dozen young men and women in the room, he said “lets get to business”, and a small, ugly creature appeared in the Holo emmiter. The creature, Ajax explained, are called Unggoy by the covenant, but are known by humans simply as grunts. James, and most of the other recruits were amazed by the lifelike appearance and movements of the hologram. “these are the most common, and for the most part considered the easiest Covenant to defeat, Ajax told them, the Sergeant interrupted “ya if this was all they got we would have already conquered them!” The hologram looked around the room nervously, and was making strange guttural, squeaking noises.
“To continue”, Ajax said sounding agitated at the interruption, “these creatures, as far as we know, are the lowest order of the Covenant, they wield the weakest weaponry, and seem in some instances, to be sacrificed to stall enemies, or defend “higher” orders”. James could notice the Sarge frown, despite 27 years of war, they didn’t even conclusively know the most basic things about their enemies.
“ These “grunts” as they are known, Ajax continued, use little in the way of tactics, and they are essentially cowards, they exhibit behavior akin to untrained conscripts”.
Ajax paused for a few moments, allowing the recruits to observe the meter tall enemy, and to take in all they learned, James took it all in, knowing knowledge of his enemy could be the difference in a pitched battle.
“ Next,” Ajax continued after the brief pause, James noticed the Sergeant skillfully hit a few buttons, and the hologram changed. “Is the Jackal, or the Kig-Yar”. James was shocked slightly by the new hologram. The meter and a half creature looked to him to be a very ugly, very vicious looking bird. Its red eyes glowed menacingly, and its jaws were full of small, sharp teeth. James looked around at the other recruits, Takota, was intently studying the creature, leaned forward in the seat, James could see his eyes in the dim light scanning the creature.
“These Jackals are comparable to the Grunts in apparent rank, but are much more dangerous” Suddenly the hologram moved, and a large round glowing shield appeared on the Jackals arm, covering it almost entirely from the front. Ajax was on the table near the hologram, and pointed out the shield to the recruits. “this device, is what makes these adversaries dangerous beyond their size, their weaponry is weak, and they are physically frail, but this shield system is almost impenetrable by our small arms.
A look and feel of discouragement fail over the invincible feeling recruits, thoughts and questions went throught their heads how do we take them out?, what weapons do we use?
Ajax, seemingly expecting these unasked questions, answered “these require teamwork, and tactical sense to take out” Ajax told the recruits. “their frail bodies can only take several hits, or a close explosion will defeat them”. “attack them with flanking fire, or lob a fragmentation grenade over the shield, If you find yourself in close quarters, do not hesitate to strike it with your weapon or with any other strong blow, it cannot survive much punishment.
James nodded, as he noticed Ajax pacing around the room, letting the recruits take in the information from their “first encounter” with the Covenant. A bright, sudden flash accompanied the next hologram. James almost jumped out of his seat when the terrifying image of the next alien appeared. He could feel the fear settle into everyone in the room, even the Sergeant seemed to be on his toes. “these, are known as the Elites” Ajax said, breaking the tension
And I wonder where these dreams go
When the world gets in your way
-Goo Goo Dolls