Author Topic: A Spartan By Any Other Name - Chapter I - Drop Zone  (Read 2091 times)

Offline jokerman

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A Spartan By Any Other Name - Chapter I - Drop Zone
« on: September 20, 2009, 08:49:30 PM »
<boring stuff>
The following story is copyrighted material and all rights belong solely to the author.  Any reproduction or republication of any or all of this publication without the explicit and expressed written consent from the author is strictly forbidden.
</boring stuff>

 Chapter I - Drop Zone

“Everybody out!”

The young Spartan stirred, still groggy from being awoken from hibernation the hour before, stood up and headed for the hatch.  The red glow of the interior lights looked eerie through the new polished visor of his helmet.  The amber glaze intended to protect the eyes from the radiation of stars as alien to him as he was to the planet he was about to step onto, gave the red lights an almost orange glow.  The glow seemed warm and inviting.  The young Spartan wondered if the planet would be warm or cold.  Not that he would feel it through the climate controlled armor but he wondered just the same.  The planet nicknamed Purgatory was completely inhospitable.  Deadly gas atmosphere, no water, plants, animals, or anything in between that could possibly be considered a life form, just sand and rocks for as far as the eyes could see.  This was the place in between.  Between home and the life the young Spartan had ever known and the war he was about to face.

“Cadet!  Aren’t you forgetting something!?”, a gruff voice yelled through the communication set in his helmet.

The young Spartan looked around and realized that his daydreaming had gotten him into trouble already.  He quickly looked around again.  His heart skipped a beat as he realized he didn’t know what he had forgotten.  But there was no way he was going to admit that… again.  Then he looked at his hands.  His weapon, he realized…  He quickly whipped around and pulled on the assault rifle in the bracket on the wall of the Pelican.  It wouldn’t budge.  “Unlock it, dummy”, he thought to himself as he sighed quietly.  Flipping the locking brackets that secured the weapon during transport, he snatched the assault rifle off the wall and went through the initial weapon inspection procedure that he had done so many times in basic training.  Weapon checked, he loaded up on ammo and turned back to the hatch.

“Forget that again and it will be the last thing you ever forget”, said the gruff voice of the veteran standing at the hatch’s controls.  There was almost sadness in the veteran’s voice and the young Spartan thought he saw the veteran shake his head slightly as he walked by.  The Spartan believed the veteran was making fun of him.  Actually, the veteran was genuinely sad thinking that this was just another of the many cadets he dropped off that would not last the week.

The young Spartan jumped off the transport and landed with a thud.  Heavier gravity met him as he landed.  He noticed it was more difficult to straighten his legs after jumping off the transport than usual.  He realized that this was why they trained the cadets so hard with heavy weights and endurance routines.  He was proud of himself and how hard he had trained.  He had never been in better shape, never been stronger than he was this day.  If only his friends from back home could see him now, he thought.  He had trained so hard and passed his training tests with such high scores that he had earned a trip to Purgatory early, before all the others in his training class.  The fact that the war was not going well and they needed soldiers on all fronts as soon as possible, escaped the young Spartan.  All he knew is that he had done everything he could do to be the best he could be for this moment.  He had made it.  And he was proud.

“Check in at the compound 9.3 clicks to the northeast.  The NAV point has been programmed into your suit”, said the veteran, his voice somewhat softer.

“Who do I report to, sir?” said the cadet.

“Don’t worry, he’ll find you”, replied the veteran.  There was a pause as if the veteran was taking one last look.  He did this to remember all the cadets.  He felt it was his duty to never forget any of them.  No soldier deserves to be forgotten.

The young Spartan stood for a few seconds looking at the veteran and said, “Yes sir, see you next trip”, and saluted the veteran.

“Yeah, sure kid… next trip”, and stood straight and performed a perfectly executed salute.  The cadet was slightly taken aback at the precision of the veteran’s salute.  Salutes are usually a quick formality.  Hand up, hand down, get it over with, and get on to business.  It is a recognition of authority and respect.  The cadet had done this so many times that it had its own rhythm; a ballistic movement with its own cadence, almost like walking or breathing, it was automatic.  The arm knew what to do and did it all on its own.  But this time the cadet had to stop his hand from dropping.  This was something that confused his arm.  This time the cadet had to consciously control the salute himself.  One of the first things he learned in basic training is that it is the superior that signifies the completion of the salute, not the subordinate.  The cadet waited and finally saw the veteran’s hand drop.  It seemed like forever in saluting time, but it was really only a few seconds.

The hatch closed and the Pelican’s engines roared.  The young Spartan turned and started for the NAV point.  He was glad he had some time before he got to the compound to reflect on the veteran and what he was about to face.  Transports aren’t allowed to land too close to the compounds in fear of giving away their positions.  The hike to the compound would allow the cadet to get a feel of his surroundings.  The chance to begin to cope with his new situation was a bonus.

« Last Edit: September 27, 2009, 05:01:28 PM by jokerman »

Offline Liam

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Re: A Spartan By Any Other Name - Chapter I - Drop Zone
« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2009, 08:58:00 PM »
Bravo  :neckbeard:

Man, that was better than the books. Well done.

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Offline BFM_SüprM@ñ

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Re: A Spartan By Any Other Name - Chapter I - Drop Zone
« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2009, 11:34:12 PM »
I like it. I like it a lot! More soon please!? -nods-
Being a good racer in Halo isn't just about getting the best times. You have to know where your teammates and enemies are, and most of all... how to be crafty! XD -nods-

Oh... and "v.v" = sad face.

Props to Plixity for the first sig, Slayton for the Season XIII trophy sig, and Jane for the banner(s)! Thx guys! ^.^

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Offline BFM_Noddu

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Re: A Spartan By Any Other Name - Chapter I - Drop Zone
« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2009, 03:33:21 PM »
Ohh... Oh its on  :toughguy: :toughguy: :toughguy: :toughguy: :toughguy:

You. Me. Microsoft Word. NOW!!!

But honestly great story ;) Looks like a I have a worthy opponent writer :P
Keep up the good story bud!

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Offline jokerman

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Re: A Spartan By Any Other Name - Chapter I - Drop Zone
« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2009, 06:14:22 PM »
Thanks ppl.  I really appreciate it!  I am really glad you are enjoying it.

And yes, Noddu, you are the lead!  To quote Wayne, "I am not worthy!!!"

Offline ¥Mderms¥

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Re: A Spartan By Any Other Name - Chapter I - Drop Zone
« Reply #5 on: December 11, 2009, 06:33:22 AM »
This seems interesting, you may have some competition from yours truly soon >:)