Where ProtoFrames Dare

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Where ProtoFrames Dare

Postby Artasid » Fri Jun 29, 2018 5:19 am

Chapter 00 - Into The Breach

ImageProtoFrames


Estell did not like ProtoFrames. Though they were better than normal battlesuits, they still did not offer the same performance as an actual frame. Still, she was with the Colonist Cell Militia, and with the resources running at an all time low, beggars can not be choosers. What made matters worst is that she was stuck in this ProtoFrame while in the hover transports cargo bay. The Thunderhawk hover transport was meant to carry troops with battlesuits, and was not meant to carry a machine that was nearly the size of a frame. Estell had to keep her body slightly hunched over so her exposed head did not hit the ceiling. When she received orders to be deployed to a combat zone in the desert regions, she had hoped that the Cell would at least provide adequate transport, but again, they were limited to what was left in their hangers.
She craned her neck to look behind her at her so-called 'partner' for this mission. The boy looked barely old enough to have graduated High School and the color green across his face told Estell that he was concentrating on keeping his last meal from coming back up to say hello. She wanted to speak to him to help calm his nerves, but at the same time, she was afraid that if he opened his mouth, the contents of his stomach would spew all over the harness that kept him in his own ProtoFrame. It was with a bit of a surprise that he spoke first once he realized she was looking at him.
"How much longer to the drop site?"
As though in answer, the transport took a sudden jolt to the side, however, both ProtoFrames and their operators remained steady. Estell checked her chromometer for the umpteenth time.
"Drop in 20 minutes!"
She said. He nodded in acknowledgement and returned to his silent suffering.
Estell hated it. She hated the whole situation. She recalled the briefing and how the higher ups asked for her specifically when the desert supply depot came under attack. The defending Colonists were suffering heavy casualties and had requested aid. Estell and her 'partner' were the only frame pilots nearby that could answer the distress call. Estell cursed again, if only they had actual frames to use instead of the current cast-offs they were given. At least command was considerate enough to give Estell proper time to customize her ProtoFrame with a Combat Cannon, a Comms Relay, and Drop Boosters. Plus she was also able to get it Quick-Sprayed in desert camo. Her 'Partner' on the other hand, did not receive the same luxury. Instead, the command staff practically grabbed him, threw him into the ProtoFrame that is on loan from another Cell and loaded him into the transport before he could form any objections. It was equipped with a Long Range Howitzer (Which in this cramped cargo bay, the end of the muzzle was mere inches away from the right side of her ear) and an Arm Shield that looked like it was about to fall off. But the worst of it, was that his ProtoFrame was still in Artic weather camo paint. White with grey, splashes of light blue and black are not the colors to have while in any desert region. He'll stick out like a bright yellow light in a pitch black room.
"This your first drop?"
She asked.
"First while under fire!"
He had to yell back as the transport began to shake and shutter. The sounds of bullets, lazer blasts, explosions could barely be heard over the roar of the hover pods.
"You always this nervous?"
She called back
"No. Motion sickness."
Estell then had a new form of respect for the guy. Dispite his ailments, he was still willing to continue the combat drop.
"Last minute details!"
Estell then yelled out
"We will have friendlies in the area, so check your targets! Also, once we drop, find some cover and provide long range support!"
"Yes Ma'am!"
"Listen close to this next one! If something happens to me, or I call a 'Mission Abort', What do you do?"
"Get to the extraction point and set off an emergency flare for extraction."
"Correct! Whoever is attacking that depot is determined to get it. We cannot afford to loose what resources we have!"
The sound of a brief explosion rang off. Judging by the volume of the sound, plus the sudden jolt of the transport, it was most likely a near miss. If Estell was not already desensitized to the horrors of combat, she would most likely be wetting her pants. She glanced at her partner and wondered if he was as disciplined.
"Three minutes! Run last systems check!"
Almost automatically, both Estell and her partner ran through the checklist of each of their Protoframes systems. Though lacking a physical heads up display, all of the suits systems were wirelessly transmitted to appear on their visors. Their eyes were filled with data flow that showed them the status of all systems: Weapon loadouts, ammo, fuel supply, armor density and so on. As experienced at they are, it only took the pair a moment to familiarize themselves with the layout.
"One more thing Rookie!"
She called back, just as a red light above the cargo bay door began to flash and the door itself slowly rose up
"I never did get your name!"
"Alton Burtz."
He answered. When the hanger door was finally opened all the way, and she could see explosion clouds popping into view, Estell moved her Protoframe to the opening with Alton shuffling close behind.
"Well Al, Welcome to Hell!"
And she jumped. One full second later, Alton followed.
Last edited by Artasid on Sat Jun 30, 2018 2:59 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Where ProtoFrames Dare

Postby VitorFaria » Fri Jun 29, 2018 9:53 pm

Nice setup! Are you going to continue it?
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Re: Where ProtoFrames Dare

Postby KungFujiApple » Sat Jun 30, 2018 4:51 am

This short story was so fun! Very descriptive, yet enough was left out to let the readers imagination work with the story. You have a definite flare for writing, as I have thoroughly enjoyed your other fan fiction as well. Would love to see more of this down the read.... I mean road :lol:
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Re: Where ProtoFrames Dare

Postby Artasid » Sat Jun 30, 2018 6:01 pm

VitorFaria wrote:Nice setup! Are you going to continue it?

Thank you VitorFaria and yes, I do plan to continue

KungFujiApple wrote:This short story was so fun! Very descriptive, yet enough was left out to let the readers imagination work with the story. You have a definite flare for writing, as I have thoroughly enjoyed your other fan fiction as well. Would love to see more of this down the read.... I mean road :lol:

lol, and I will be writhing more... I mean writing more :lol:

Chapter 01 - First Contact

Estell hid her ProtoFrame behind the building with walls made of sandstone, clay, mortar, mud, and who knows what else. Regardless of their material makeup, the walls proved suitable cover as it had stopped the bullets that the Hi-Leg had been firing at her. The moment she and her partner Alton had dropped into this combat zone, she had been frantic about her movements and actions. She knew from previous experiences how a single mishap could spell disastrous results, often death, with sever injury being the lesser of the possible outcomes.
"Mother Scrapper!"
She cursed. All around the desert town, civilians, and combatants alike flew in panic around her. Some were friendlies, some were attacking rebels that for some odd reason, ignored her. They seemed content to allow a frame, the Hi-Leg in this instance, to confront her. Foot troopers would not easily succeed an attack against a ProtoFrame, regardless of their training. And Estell was fine with that. It made more sense that she would have to deal with someone her 'own size'.
She eased her ProtoFrame towards the edge of the wall to see if she can get a glimpse of the enemy Hi-Leg and with any luck, hit it with a surprise attack. However, she was not that lucky. The moment the shoulder of the ProtoFrame peeked from behind the cover, there was a sudden 'ratta-ratta-ratta' sound that came from the Hi-Legs Chain gun. Out of reflex, Estell pulled back behind cover and the bullets peppered the edge of the wall she hid behind.
"Frag it!"
She cursed again. Using the advance targeting data that her comm tower allowed her, she locked in the coordinates of the Hi-Legs general location and transmitted it to Alton.
"Al, I need you to shoot a few into these cords!"
She ordered over the radio. Alton Burtz, Estells partner, received the data and aligned his Howitzer accordingly
"Yes Ma'am. Incoming fire!"
He called back as he pulled the trigger. Three very loud 'Thunk's echoed over the battlefield as the artillery cannon vomited out three separate shells. Less than a full second later, Estell heard the familiar sounds of explosions emitting from the direction of the Hi-Leg she hid from. A brief shower of dirt. smoke and other small debris rained upon her and Estell took this moment to break cover and confront the Hi-Leg. If the artillery strike did not take it down, then the pilot was most likely still recovering from the shock of such close impacts.
She charged ahead, and as the wind carried away the smoke and dust, she could see the Hi-Legs fate. Its chain gun, which was mounted on it's right side, was now a twisted lump of metal in the desert street, oil blood from the frame stained the sand and other components that Estell could not identify peppered the ground, but the Hi-Leg still stood.
Barely.
It wobbled on unsteady legs, it's right side a mangled mess of metal, wires and other materials. As it tried to walk, it gave Estell the impression that it was a drunken man that had just left the local tavern on a drunken stroll towards home. Estell aimed her cannon and trigger two consecutive shots. Both projectiles struck the mangled right hip of the leg and the limb blew apart. In the moment of a heartbeat, the Hi-Leg fell forward, crashed into the sands and remained still.
Estell released the breath that she had not realized she had been holding since she broke cover.
The top of the Hi-Leg swung upward and from the canopy of the frame the pilot, whom Estell could see was injured, raised his hands and slowly climbed out of his dead machine. Estell sent a radio transmission to the local Cell outpost.
"Send an armed escort and a medtech. We've captured an injured pilot."
"Right away."
Came a generic reply. Estell kept her aim on the pilot, though she doubt he would be stupid enough to try anything while staring down the barrel of a gun. She had to smile briefly though. For a rookie, her partner landed some good hits and she would have to praise him later.
The Dead may outlast the Living, but those who never Lived outlast them all.
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Re: Where ProtoFrames Dare

Postby Artasid » Tue Jul 03, 2018 3:21 am

Chapter 02 - Reflections

The capture of one enemy frame pilot, injured or otherwise, does not an end of battle make. Reports from the local defenders stated the attack came from five frames. Luckily one of these frames, (Reported as another Hi-Leg) was taken down early in the conflict by hand held anti-frame rockets. However, they were soon savagely dispatched once the attackers realized the threat and ensured that the weapons used against them had been scrapped. If Estell and Alton with their ProtoFrames had not dropped into the combat zone, the local Colonist defenders would not have anything to resist with. Al bit at his lip in anticipation as he awaited further orders on the eastern outskirts of the desert town. He was instructed to seclude himself and provide long range indirect fire support for whenever Estell requested it. He was currently alone. This also made him an easy target should the attacking rebels ever discover his location. The white, grey and blue paint on his ProtoFrame definitely made him stand out but so far he has been unnoticed by the enemy. The ProtoFrame that Command had thrusted upon him was in poor condition overall. The shield welded to the left arm needed replacing as it was mostly a dented and scratched pile of metal fused to the limb, and the machine had no targeting system of its own, save for a glitchy GPS system that could not give any form of friend or foe markers. He would have to rely on Estell to route him coordinate data through her comm tower if he wanted to fire his artillery weapon with any kind of accuracy.
His current location was outside the majority of the fighting, but still close enough that if the rebels shifted their attack course, he could be in serious trouble. Al began to wonder if joining the Colonist Cell was a good life choice for him. Such thoughts often plagued him when he was in combat, however, this is the first battlefield he has entered without his old Commissar frame. It was outdated and perhaps not much better than the ProtoFrame he operated now, but it was his frame and he was comfortable in it. But when supplies began to dwindle between the Cells, he was forced to surrender it and for all he knew it was lying in some garbage heap on some other planet.
"Al, I need another peppering of shells. Sending you cords!"
Estells voice practically screamed into his radio, which made him jump as he was too lost in thought to have expected the sudden order. The visor he wore began to collect data via wireless connection, which converted the numbers into latitude and longitude. Numbers he can input into the scrappy GPS system he had to get a rough targeting area.
"Yes Ma'am! Incoming fire!"
He reported back and pulled the firing trigger three times. Three times, the long barrel spewed forth fire and thunder as high velocity impact shells took flight from their casings. He watched three trails of smoke follow the projectiles before they evaporated into the atmosphere a moment later. A few seconds later, he could scarcely hear three impact explosions echoing over the other sounds of combat. He could not tell if his aim was true, but had to rely solely on the targeting data Estell had transmitted.
For the moment, he was wondering just how bad the fighting was inside the town, and he also wondered if he was making any difference just standing out on the side lines.
The Dead may outlast the Living, but those who never Lived outlast them all.
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Re: Where ProtoFrames Dare

Postby Aardvark17 » Tue Jul 03, 2018 1:04 pm

I finally took the time to read this, and it's very good! You definitely have a knack for world-building and writing characters. I can't wait to see what's next!
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Re: Where ProtoFrames Dare

Postby VitorFaria » Tue Jul 03, 2018 9:01 pm

If I may give some constructive criticism, try to break the paragraphs more, huge chunks of text become tiresome and difficult to follow even if the content itself is good.
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Re: Where ProtoFrames Dare

Postby Artasid » Fri Jul 06, 2018 12:33 am

Chapter 03 - A Chance, Perhaps?

The Chub strolled down the main street as though it had not a care in the universe. But one would think otherwise as its dome shaped head twisted from side to side almost constantly, as though it were looking for something. The evidence of scratches and dents across the chest plate armor of the frame is sign enough that the Chub had encountered the local resistance, and that was most likely what it was searching for.
Atop one of the sandstone made buildings, along it's flat roof, three of the local Colonist Cell defenders croutched behind the stone outcropping which was just barely tall enough to conceal them from the frames view. The leader of these three, Acting Commander Veness Gordon, double checked the magazine of her semi-automatic combat rifle. The weapon was wonderful against infantry and maybe even armored troops, but against a frame, especially a military grade one like the Chub, it was about as useful as a BB gun against a freight train. Practically useless, but its all that they had.
Veness glanced back at her teammates, one was a slightly younger woman who's face exposed how terrified she was, and the other was a younger man, but his stoic face did not express any fear, if he felt any.
The three crouched behind the stone railing and waited. The thuds of the Chubs footfalls were loud, but as they started the fade farther away, the locals started to relax, feeling that the Chub had passed them by.
"It must not have a scanner"
The boy whispered,
"Otherwise it would have been on top of us by now."
The girl nodded in agreement, but she was still shaking. Veness sighed, and with extra care, cautiously poked her head over the edge of the diminutive wall and caught a glimps of the Chub facing away from them, it continued down the street all the while it's dome head twisting back and forth. Veness ducked back down and rechecked her weapon yet again.
"It's got a cargo net hanging from it's back."
She told her teammates
"The fact that its empty means they haven't found which building our stockpiles are in."
"Maybe they'll give up and leave."
The girl said hopefully. Veness wished she shared that kind of optimism, but had a more realistic view.
"They're going to stay unless they either find what they're here for, or we force them out. Any word on reinforcements?"
The boy looked at her with those stern, combat ready eyes.
"Only of the two Protoframes that dropped some time ago. No word since."
Veness wanted to punch the wall, but that would not be a good moral booster for the two in her company. They needed something other than anti-infinity weapons to fight off these rebel pirates that have invaded their homes. Veness took a chance and looked back over the edge of the rail.
The Chub was going slow, but it was still moving away from them, until it stopped suddenly. Veness held her breath in fear that it had detected them, but was quickly relieved when instead, she noticed that further down the street, another object blocked the frames path.
A ProtoFrame.
In the moment of a heartbeat, the Chub raised is combat rifle and unleased a hail of gunfire towards the target. The Protoframe, with reflexes slightly better than the Chubs, dove to the side, behind another building. Anti-frame shells plastered the stone wall, chipping it away.
Veness motioned quickly to her male companion to give her his radio. He surrendered the device to her and Veness dialed in the frequency for friendly forces.
"Protoframe operator engaging the Chub frame, this is Acting Commander Veness Gordon of the local Cell Block Colonist Defense."
Almost immediately came a reply
"Estell Andi of the 53rd Colonist Cell Militia. What's your status?"
The Chub unleased another volley from it's rifle into the building Estell was using for cover.
"We have a visual of the Chub frame. Currently holding position on the rooftop behind it's right side. That would be your left when you look this way."
Why did she feel the need to clarify that?
"As far as we can tell, the Chub has no targeting systems, though it is equipped with a cargo harness and a Chub standard combat rifle."
"Thanks for the input."
Estell said back
"Anything you can do to give me a chance to hit the scrapper would be great!"
"Copy Estell. Stand by."
Veness practically threw the radio down and took hold of her weapon. She glanced at her teammates and though the girl was terrified and the boy was stoic, she knew she could count on them.
"On my signal, plaster the rear of that scraphead. We are going to distract it for our ProtoFrame backup."
"Will these even make it turn around?"
The girl asked, holding her own machine gun up for emphasis.
"We may as well be shooting spit wads."
"If enough mosquitos buzz around someone, they're bound to make a swat at one."
"Just don't be that one that gets swatted."
The boy smiled.
The Dead may outlast the Living, but those who never Lived outlast them all.
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Re: Where ProtoFrames Dare

Postby SamSam » Thu Jul 12, 2018 1:40 am

I like. rite moar
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Re: Where ProtoFrames Dare

Postby KungFujiApple » Sun Jul 15, 2018 8:10 am

Artasid, you really have a knack for writing. Your imagination, description, and dialog are all very well put together, and are easy and fun to read. I'm sure writing is not always easy and is time consuming, but I look forward to your next addition :)
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Re: Where ProtoFrames Dare

Postby Artasid » Thu Jul 19, 2018 4:19 am

Chapter 04 - War Horrors

The Chub unloaded a full clip of ammo into the side of the structure that Estell was using for cover. It seemed too distracted in the possible threat that the pilot had no warning of the three local defenders on the rooftop just behind it. All three of them braced against the small stone railing wall that surrounded the roof's edge and aimed their weapons. Machine guns and automatic rifles had little effect against a Frames armored hide, but perhaps they could atleast distract the Chub for their ProtoFrame companion.
Veness didn't have to give the order, she started firing and her teammates accompanied her. Anti-infantry projectiles bounced off the rear of the Chubs armor like pebbles thrown against a steel wall with an annoying 'Tink tink tink' sound. After a full 10 seconds of continuous fire, Veness halted, and the other two paused as well.
"Scrap. I was hoping to at least get that Fragger to turn around."
She cursed. Her male companion unhooked a small cylinder item from his belt and handed it to her.
"Last one"
He said. Veness glanced at the grenade in her hand an prayed that perhaps this would work.
"Give me supportive fire."
She told them as she edged closer towards the Chub. She had to make sure this counted. As the two provided fire support across the Chub's backside, Veness primed the grenade and tossed it. The grenade lobbed over and with either luck or skill (Who can say which, maybe both) The explosive landed in a bracket between the Chubs neck and shoulder armor. A full second later, the grenade exploded. A rupture of fragments, smoke and fire erupted from the Chubs shoulder and for a moment, caused the frame to stagger. In a heart beat, Veness grabbed the radio she had dropped earlier and dialed to their ProtoFrame supporter
"Veness to Estell, I think we may have gotten it's attention."
And that statement was true. After recovering from it's slight imbalance, the Chub frame spun around towards the building the three defenders were stationed.
"Correction! We DO have it's attention!"
Veness dropped the radio, raised up her rifle and proceeded to fire at the Chub, though what little their bullets could do.
Estell instantly broke cover the moment Veness transmitted her last response. Sure enough, she saw the Chub turning around, exposing it's rear side towards her as though she were no longer a threat.
How wrong that pilot thought.
Taking aim, Estell fired with her Combat Cannon. The Anit-Frame projectile exploded against the Chubs weaker rear armor and actually pushed it forward. The frame stagger again and was forced to fall to one knee to steady itself. That was it's downfall.
Estell trigger her cannon several more times and each was followed by a red and yellow explosion blooming from the Chubs back like a fireworks display. After the fifth explosion, the Chub finally fell forward, it's arms sprayed out like a dying man, smoke spewing from its reactor and several spots ablaze with combat fire.
This Chub was done.
"Estell to Veness. Good shooting."
She was expecting Veness or one of her teammates to reply, but instead, she heard a the static of a broken transmission... From Alton!
"...Ma'am! Unde...tack... Assista… Urgently!"
Then the transmission died. And for a brief, horrifying moment, Estell though that the transmission was not the only thing that just died.
The Dead may outlast the Living, but those who never Lived outlast them all.
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Re: Where ProtoFrames Dare

Postby KungFujiApple » Fri Aug 10, 2018 8:58 pm

I love your writing, I love this story and I love how you leave us wanting more. Great work keep em coming :D
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Re: Where ProtoFrames Dare

Postby Artasid » Wed Aug 29, 2018 2:52 am

Chapter 05 - Praise the Little Things

Alton Burtz ran. More accurately, he pushed his ProtoFrame to run. Several frame feet length behind him was a rebel Commissar, and in it's hand, it waved a metal grinder saw, a tool Frames used to cut metal, rock and other hard materials for construction purposes. But in this case, the tool was wielded like a weapon. One Alton did not have adequate defense against.
Al had lingered along the outskirts of the settlement in order to provide artillery support for Estell. Being so far from where the majority of the fighting was taking place, Alton had hoped that he would have been overlooked which in turn would have left him safe.
He did not expect the attacking rebels to send a frame to flush him out.
The moment Al realized that the Commissar was rushing to attack him, he pivoted his ProtoFrame and made a mad dash along the buildings to try and outrun the frame. However, Al's ProtoFrame was weighed down with its Howitzer cannon and the ammo stored in its rear compartment. The Commissar did not seem to be burdened with such things as the only equipment Al was able to determine it had was the metal grinder, a sensor dome and an antenna. When Al tried to radio Estell for support, he realized that his radio transmission was being scrambled and it was most likely due to the Commissar's communications equipment.
"This is Alton Burtz to any Free Colonist defenders."
He tried to radio again, though he was certain it was being jammed
"I'm in need of immediate assistance!"
How His ProtoFrame kept a few steps ahead of the Commissar was nothing short of a miracle but Al was not one to look a gift horse in the mouth. He would have fired his main weapon, however at such a close range, the howitzer would have been completely inaccurate and practically useless. He hoped he could keep the pace until something intervened.
Coming towards their location, Al managed to catch a glimpse of a dust trail and for a moment he hoped that it was Estell's ProtoFrame, kicking up dust as it ran towards him to provide defensive backup, but in all honesty, he doubts her ProtoFrame could travel the speed that the dust trail was kicked up.
"Scrap!"
Al cursed as he glanced behind him only to see the metal grinder mere inches from the rear of his ProtoFrame. He raised the ProtoFrames left arm up, and just as he had, the grinder struck the worn-out arm shield. The grinder bit into the metal but quickly glanced off as the angle of the blade did not hit solidly enough to keep it in place for cutting. The Commissar paused just briefly and that was enough time for Al to increase the distance between them.
"This is Al to any local Colonist Defenders."
He tried the radio yet again.
"Anyone please help!"
He looked up and he was able to make out what it was that was causing the dust trail that headed for him. It was an ancient Terran vehicle, a pickup truck. It was rusted and worn out and should probably in a scrap heap, but it was operational. Mounted in the rear bed, Al could see a tripod mounted machinegun with a gunner aiming it. Towards him!
Alton quickly turned into an alley between two structures, hoping to avoid the incoming hail of machinegun fire that he sworn was meant for him, but instead, the truck drove past the ProtoFrame and towards the Commissar. The bed mounted machine gun opened fire on the frame, but its bullets did little more than annoy its pilot.
When Al spun around to see what was going on, he inadvertently swung the howitzer like a club. The barrel stuck the Commissar hard enough that the frame lost its balance and fell against a stone wall. For the briefest of moments, it looked like a simple man resting after a long day at work.
Al did not have time to question the sudden turn of events as the pickup truck skidded to a stop at the Commissars feet. The gunner, whom Al could now see was a child no older than maybe 14 years old, climbed the chest of the Commissar, and dropped a small device into the viewport of the Commissar's frontal plating. half a second later, there was a muffled bang a flash that shone through the open slit and then smoke.
The boy glanced through the viewport, gave Al a 'Confirmed kill' wave, then bound back to the waiting pickup truck, which then sped away to wherever it was needed.
Alton gave a long sigh of relief, then, using the ProtoFrames claw to snap the radio scrambler antenna off the Commissar.
"Alton to Estell, Thank the locals for some much needed rescue."
The Dead may outlast the Living, but those who never Lived outlast them all.
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Re: Where ProtoFrames Dare

Postby Artasid » Mon Sep 24, 2018 4:45 am

Chapter 06 - Aftermath

Alton let loose a long sigh of relief as he removed his helmet and control visor. He powered down the ProtoFrame near a structure he was instructed to report to. The hot sun was beating down on him and the smell of baking oil and robotic fluids invaded the air and Alton hoped he wouldn't be stuck too long out in this heat.
"You had me worried"
A voice said suddenly, he looked down to see Estell, unmounted from her ProtoFrame staring up at him. He swallowed hard that he may have done something to displease her
"I am sorry Ma'am. I tried to radio in, but that Commissar had some transmission jammer on it as far as I was able to tell."
She crossed her arms and looked at him skeptically
"Yet you managed to get a call through."
"Barely"
Al unhooked the harness that secured him to the ProtoFrames control saddle, and he diligently slipped off. His feet hit the ground but as his legs were unsteady, they gave out from under him and he fell like a heap of dirty laundry onto the dust road. Estell hid a smile but was slightly amused at his flustered face as he rose back up and steadied himself against the ProtoFrames leg.
"Sorry Ma'am."
"How'd you take out the Commissar?"
She asked suddenly, to which caught him slightly by surprised.
"I suppose my distress calls got answered by some locals. A jury-rigged pickup truck distracted it enough for me to knock it over with my barrel."
He pointed to the noticeable dent in his howitzer. He'll withhold telling her it was completely by accident for the time being.
"One of the locals then tossed a grenade into the cockpit and took off."
"A truck like that one?"
Estell pointed her thumb over her shoulder. Alton looked over and saw the same kind of truck that came to his aid earlier. It had the same color and even the same weaponry.
"Yes Ma'am. I think that's the same one."
"Locals alright. After I met up with the Commanding Officer, I had her send a scout to your location. I only got part of your distress call, but enough to know you were in need of a rescue."
Alton had the good graces to look away as his cheeks burned red in embarrassment.
"Lets debrief the rest inside, this sun is murder."
"Yes Ma'am"
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