Over 10 wolves ranging from the size of a car to a bus, rushed headlong through the forest and burst out of the foliage, appearing in the 300m strip of cleared land between the trees and the base's perimeter.

Snarls and growls accompanied the creatures, as they sprint against the open ground. "Fire!" James yells as the lead wolf passes the 200m marker. Tracers erupted from his bunker followed soon by the rest as they opened fire too.

The glow of the crisscrossing tracers lights up the new dawn of the day while howls and gunfire scattered the flying creatures from the forest.

"Watch your fire and aim before you shoot!" James peeks out of the bunker while directing his men's fire. "Don't waste ammo!"

Suddenly a huge shadow covers the left side port openings and the whole bunker shooked with a loud thud. A piercing whine could be heard as the wolf broke his paw against the hardened concrete when it tried to smash it away with its paws.

It couldn't understand why is it so tough! It used to be able to sweep the stone and wooden buildings away from the 2 legs! It whimpers in pain and tries to limp away.

"HELLO, MY DINNER! COME TO PAPA!" Mills holler as he fires full auto into the retreating wolf who hit the bunker, making his head hurt. The impact of his bullets pounded the creature's organs to jelly, causing it to vomit blood before it collapses with a earth shaking smash. "Woohoo! Fresh meat tonight!"

James shakes his head at Mills's antics and climbs up the ladder to the reach the tower top. After 3 levels of climbing, he emerges from the ladder to a spacious square room with tiny rectangular viewports giving a panorama view of the surroundings. The 2 security crew members were stationed here and were firing carefully downwards at the attacking wolves.

"How is everything?" James asks as he stood on the firing step and looks out at the surrounding. The sun has started to appear and casting long shadows over the ground while tracers flew hazardously towards the fast-moving wolves.

"Doing fine, corporal!" they replied excitedly, their fear overtaken by the adrenaline rush and success of the kills. "They can't get to us!"

"Good, watch your fire and ammo," James advised. "Make every shot count!" Most of the wolves have fallen, while some others surrounded the bunkers, trying to gnaw at the troops inside. Several wolves ignored the bunkers and rampage around the temporarily built structures at the Base Colony.

He watches a wolf the size of a truck, tramples the survival domes, tearing its tough fabric before getting fired upon by the nearest bunker. It dodges and howls, but under the heavy gunfire, topples over and crushes an abandoned forklift on the side of the road.

James checks his tablet and finds out that the wolves have split into 2 groups of over 20 each, and are attacking in 2 different directions. Damn. These guys are smart! But so far, other than a few damaged equipment and buildings, we manage to hold the line still. Unless that monstrous wolf comes into play.

Sensing that the attack has failed, the alpha wolf howls and the remaining wolves turn tail and retreated, leaving behind a dozen dead and dying. It glares from the cover of the forest, staring with hatred at the Base Colony before it turns and retreats with its brood to lick their wounds.

"Sir, contacts retreating out of motion sensor range."

"Send a UAV after them, see if we can follow them back to their lair this time." The last few attempts did not bore fruit as the UAV infra and thermal sensors couldn't pick them out in the night. Blake turns and asks Ford, "Any casualties?"

"No, sir, other than some shaken nerves, we survived this attack," Ford reports after he checks with every department. "But we depleted quite a lot of our ammunition stores."

"Get the crews out to bring in the bodies, make it quick. I got a feeling that they just fell back to regroup before attacking again." Blake orders. "Also, stop rerouting power to the laser's capacitors. Restore power to the rest of the ship and base." He wipes the sweat off his face, as the temperature had steadily risen up in the bridge throughout the night due to the air conditioners having no power. He couldn't imagine what the rest of the crew inside the ship were facing even with the vents open.

The cargo bay ramps slide out as the massive armored doors cranked open. A couple of forklifts drives down the ramp and headed towards the bodies of the wolves lying all over the Base Colony. Dozens of crew members cling onto the sides of the vehicles as they hitch a ride to begin to clean up of the area.

Mills watches the work crews, hook and tow the wolf carcasses away, "Fresh meat for tonight!" He rubs his gloved hands with glee. "Damn, I am hungry! I want a nice juicy medium rare steak!"

All the soldiers stationed at bunker H-3 have climbed up onto the tower and were watching the work crews cleaning up the battlefield. "Think the wolves had enough? Will they be back?" asked one of the security guys.

"Hell if I know." Mills patted his rifle stock, "If they come again, I just feed them 6.5mms while they feed my tummy!" He laughs at his own joke.

"And someone was almost crying for his mommy the other day..." James couldn't help but make fun of him, making the rest laugh along. James is very glad that his team morale has risen, asks Bartley, "You alright?"

"Yes, Corp," Bartley replies in his usual dull tone. "Just sad for those creatures. They look so noble."

"Noble or not," James pats Bartley on his shoulder, "They are still trying to kill us. We do what we have to do to protect everyone here."

"That we do," Bartley whispers. "The clash of the giants."

The wolves did not return later that day, nor the following weeks ahead.


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neo Koh


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