The Proto-Spartan Project
Published on / 8 Chapter(s) / 0 Review(s)
A series based in the Halo universe. Set roughly a week before the games, the story follows a squad of special forces marines, whom, overshadowed by the more successful Spartans, have been regulated to crap jobs while the Spartans save Earth
Chapter 1, EVAC
Jay's head hurt like hell and he wanted to writhe in pain, but he knew better than to move when he didn't even know where he was. He slowly opened his eyes and realized that he was laying, face-flat on the ground. He could feel that he still had his armor on, but he didn't know any more than that. He racked his mind to remember what had happened, but all he could figure was that he had either been hit with an explosive, or a truck. He heard foot steps approaching, stopping right next to him.
"Hey? Hey, wake up!"
"He's dead Tom; c'mon, we need to get back to the bunker."
"You sure? We should at least take him in. Just incase..."
"Yeah. Let's do just that. I'm sure that won't be a problem."
"I'm just saying...it seems...impolite...."
"Impolite? Impolite! Tom, you do remember that these bastards have been trying to take over our pretty little planet for over a decade? Now they want to act like we're all buddy-buddy now that those alien bastards have shown up. Once they clear out those space lizards, the good ol' UNSC will just roll right over our system after they let those aliens wear us down. No. That's not impolite at all!"
Jay quickly figured that the one that was yelling would be a threat to him if he didn't get an advantage; he wouldn't put it past an Insurrectionist to shoot a downed man.
Tom quickly tried to calm down the other. "Okay! Okay! Bad choice of words...I just feel like it's wrong to leave his body out here."
"...Well... It would be a big waste of resources to just leave his armor and stuff out here."
Jay tilted his head ever so slightly so that he could realize that the more aggressive of the two was standing closer, about a meter away from his face. He wore a simple, green button-up shirt, and had unkempt black hair. The other's hair was short and brown; he wore what looked to be construction cover-alls. The angry one was holding a battered rifle.
"Tom, grab that gun...looks like his." Tom held up Jay's assault rifle for him to see. "Yeah...Looks bland and grey enough for the UNSC."
Both their faces were turned, Jay performed a small pushup, then moved his hands beneath his chest, and with another, stronger shove, set him up into a kneel. He grabbed the hunting rifle's barrel, and with a quick jerk, pulled it from the civilian's hands. He then shoved the butt of the gun into his green torso, sending the man staggering back until he fell over a fallen lamppost. Jay pivoted, gun raised at Tom, who hadn't even realized what had happened. Tom's face went from puzzled to enlightened to sober as he let the assault rifle clatter to the ground. Jay made a silent nod with his head for Tom to go stand next to his friend, who was just standing back up.
"What did I say?" The black haired man said, as much to the soldier as to Tom. "You can't trust the bastards!" He stared into Jay's face, challenging his authority.
"Sit down." Jay commanded. Tom quickly obliged, but the other still stood. Jay rolled his eyes and tossed the hunting rifle down, but figured the act of nonagression would be pointless on such a hard-headed Insurrectionist 'A fat lot of good any sign of peace will have on this jackass.' Jay thought.
"Simon? Sit down!" urged Tom, and the man slowly sat down, still trying to stare down the armored marine.
Both seated, and the situation temporarily settled, Jay relaxed and asked, "You mentioned a bunker?" Both men were quiet. He expected as much, but still sighed, "I don't have time for this... none of us do." Still, silence. He reached to his helmet and pressed a switch. "Sarge? Come in."
Another voice popped onto the radio. "Jay? What is it? You find anything?"
"Yeah, two Insurrectionists...I believe one fired an explosive at me, knocked me out, the building I was in is in ruins."
"Are you okay?"
"Yeah, fine. There is apparently an Insurrectionist bunker nearby, but I'm not getting anything useful out of these two."
"North Bunting, in the street, next to a demolished department store, light-ish yellow."
"I need you to find that bunker, I'm sending in the Pelican to evac as many people as possible."
"Just Kevin? A lot of help he'll be."
"Keigan is going too, to help incase there are injured. They should arrive in ten minutes."
"Affirmative." Jay switched off his radio and readdressed the two. "Okay, we're leaving here in ten minutes. Now, I need to know: Is there anyone else with you?" Tom almost looked as if he would budge, but a stern look from Simon reset his resolve. "Look:" Jay felt his patience quickly evaporating, "The military base we're evac'ing to is a hundred times safer than hiding in this rubble."
Simon shot back, "And once you take us back to 'safety,' we stop being saved civilians and go to being Insurrectionist prisoners!"
"What? Who cares about P.O.W.s?" Jay shouted in exasperation. "The Covenant is about to flatten your planet, and the rest of the Platumen System!"
"I don't care. Let us stay here! We're sure as hell not going to bother them! In fact, this entire fuck up is your fault! That thing," Simon pointed up at the Covenant cruiser hanging above the clouds, "wasn't doing anything until you idiots showed up. As soon as you got the chance, you started firing on them. Now our lives have been hell. If you all would just leave, the aliens could probably see that we normal people don't want any fighting. Our delegates could then try and work out a peace."
Jay stared incredulously at the civilian. "What war are you watching? Have you even seen-" He was cut off as he heard the familiar sound of a Pelican dropship over head. All three looked up to the west and saw one lowering to the ground over a nearby park. "C'mon, we're getting you two out of here...unless you have changed your mind and wish to save the others in the bunker."
"You can take your bull shit and shove it up your ass."
Jay almost made a move to hit Simon, but he saw a purple object down the road. It definitely wasn't good; he turned around and saw Keigan running up to them, asking if anyone needed aid.
"Forget the bunker," Jay said as he looked back again and saw the bulbous purple craft approaching. "We need to move now."
"Why?" Keigan asked as he looked down the street two, and as his eyes met with the tank moving at them, he immediately took a step back.
"C'mon, we need to get out of here before that Wraith catches us" Jay said to the two, who looked slightly uneasy, presented with this dilemma. The consented and the four ran back for the dropship. Jay, in back, heard the tank fire, he would even later recall the blast hitting the ground behind him, showering the back of his armor with molten asphalt, but he didn't care for such trivialities and focused only on running. Jay also saw scattered bolts of plasma flying by in all directions, but at this range he was fairly certain that the tank's plasma cannon was almost useless.
"Holy Hell!" Tom shouted as a bolt splashed across the ground next to him. They reached the park, and the Pelican was already hovering a meter over the ground, with the troop bay opened up. The four of them scrambled in, the two civilians laying on the floor, covering their heads, Jared jumped into a nearby seat and grabbed hold of a crash strap. Jay hit a switch near the open bay door, slowly shutting the door. The Wraith fired again, and as Jay watched the orb of plasma creep towards them, the air was suddenly filled with the roar of the Pelican's engines as the ship lurched to the side, knocking over a few thin trees in a horrible cacophony of sound. The blast hit the soft dirt, and before the tank could charge another shot, the Pelican was already starting to rise out of range, but now the door was closed fully, and Jay couldn't see out. Only the dim red lights in the darkness.
Tom felt his way to a jump seat and sat silently in his chair, which wasn't all too comfortable; and as such, he wasn't very comforted. Simon sat opposite of him, on the other side of the dropship's rear bay. He felt awkward riding in a flying craft without being able to see the world outside, Simon didn't seem to pleased with the ship either, at least that's how he seemed to look in the dim lights.
"Did they design these flying wrecks to be as awkward and depressing as possible?" Simon addressed the two soldiers. The first one that they had run into had identified himself as Jay, the other was named Keigan. Tom liked Keigan considerably more, mostly because he didn't look as much as a "real" soldier like Jay did. Keigan's armor wasn't nearly as heavy as Jay's, he didn't even have a helmet on, which allowed him to note that his hair was well longer than any soldier's hair he had ever seen.
The entire ship lurched up suddenly and leveled off just as violently. Tom's queasiness got the best of him, and he threw up on the grated floor.
"Dammit!" Jay yelled into the cockpit, "You made that guy vomit all over the floor!"
"Sorry..." came back a reply, "Fell asleep for a second there...shouldn't happen again." The pilot bothered Tom about as much as Jay did, he couldn't tell if he was joking or not.
"Now I've got to put up with the smell of puke, now..." the soldier grumbled audibly enough to make Tom slightly nervous and embarrassed that he was causing problems.
"Like puke is anything compared to how you can smell." Keigan retorted.
"What do I smell like?"
"Shouldn't you have gotten used to that by now?" Jay jeered.
"Just because I'm a medic--"
"And a shitty one at that..."
"--doesn't mean that I should resign myself or my patients to death." Keigan looked over at Tom, "You okay?"
"Y-yeah," Tom coughed out. "Throat burns, but I'm fine." He was fairly surprised to see (vaguely) one soldier defy another soldier, especially one who seemed to be his superior. He looked over at Simon to see what he thought of it, but his friend was still sitting in the exact same position, watching the two soldiers from the corner of his eyes. The pilot's voice broke over the silence,
"Okay, we're about to land. Please check to make sure your trays are in the upright position and we have turned on the 'fasten your seatbelts' sign."
"Kevin, would you shut up?" Jay barked.
"We hope you have enjoyed your flight with Jay-is-an-asshole Airlines. We hope you have a pleasant stay here in beautiful Hell. Have a pleasant day."
By the time Kevin had finished talking, the bay doors were lowering, letting in light. Tom was slightly amazed to realize he wasn't even aware that they had been lowering to the ground. Jay strode out first, apparently glad to be off the ship. Tom stood up waiting for Simon, who was still sitting, waiting on Keigan and the pilot.
"Don't worry." Keigan said to Simon, "I'm not going to shoot you in the back."
Simon relented, stood up, and walked out in front of Tom, Keigan and Kevin.
Their squad's sergeant greeted them: a man by the name of Jordan. Looking about, Tom figured that they were well out of the city. The large buildings were gone, and only a few houses were visible; they were out in the farmlands. The only large structure was a large concrete bunker behind the sergeant. He offered the two civilians to take a quick tour of the fortification, which Tom accepted, but Simon rejected, saying he'd rather just be put in his detention cell than be fed propaganda. Jordan shrugged his shoulders and told Keigan to take him over to their barracks, a blocky looking tent a few dozen meters from the base. He and Tom strode into the building.
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