Outskirts of Sin City

The skies of over the distant city lit up and brights dots of lights continuously floated away before disappearing into the darkness of the night skies.

Blue Thunder sniffed and whimpered with pain as his crew poured antiseptic over his torn wing membranes before stretching them and using a large sewing needle to sew the torn pieces together.

"Oh, you big baby!" Rastraz giggled from the side as she stretched her serpentine body out leisurely. "It's just a small wound!"

Blue Thunder lowered his head grumpily and retorted in a low voice, "I see how you fare when you get shot next!"

"What?" Rastraz's golden eyes glowed as she glared at Blue Thunder who looked away acted innocent.

Crew Chief Sergeant Stamford gave a smack on the side of Blue Thunder and said, "All done, you big baby!"

"Why can't you use duct tape?" Blue Thunder gave his damaged wings a few experimental flaps. "I don't like needles!"

"All the duct tapes have been confiscated by Logistics!" Stamford grumbled as he helped the rest pack up the sewing kits and medical supplies. "They did an all department wide sweep, collecting all the duct tapes back, saying that our total stocks of tape are in critical levels and we are wasting it too much on many unless things!"

"What? Noooo... I want duct tape!" Blue Thunder whined. "At least it does hurt compared to needles!"

"Than stop getting yourself shot!" Stamford sighed as he shoved the medical kit into Blue Thunder's harness while Rastraz guffawed wildly on the side.

Blue Thunder sadly replied, "But bullets have no eyes... I can't control where they fly..."

Stamford shook his head and looked over to the burning city whose anti air defenses were still firing wildly off into the night skies like some sort of fireworks even when all air assets had long left the airspace of the city.

"Well, pack it up, we are going back to take some images of the city before we head back to base!"


Sin City. Palace of the Cabal

Hitsu and Loke cautiously entered the back door and followed the sounds of footsteps stomping away in the distance. After checking the corridor was clear, they hastened their steps after that person who was running away from them.

They came out of the corridor to find themselves in another wing of the Palace where several doorways could be seen. A sudden roar and a couple of Orc guard from one of the doorways fired at them, blowing a large chunk of plaster and wood out of the walls next to Hitsu.

The two Claymore One soldiers ducked and took cover before leaning out of cover to return fire at the Orc guards. The loud roars of the Orcish guns drowned out the suppressed barks of their weapons.

Hitsu yelled, "Cover me!" before he did a quick dive and rolled to the other side of the hallway. Large holes appeared around Hitsu as he rolled to cover as the Orcs fired gleefully at him.

Loke snapped his trigger rapidly, sending round after round down the hallway, blowing small holes around the Orcs' cover. As he returned to cover, he caught a glimpse of more and more Orc guards coming to reinforce the area. "Shit! More Orcs!"

"Cover me! Buy me a couple of minutes!" Hitsu cried out as he dug into his sling bag and pulled out weapon parts before fiddling with them. He quickly assembled an MG 1 from parts he retrieved from the bag before digging out a belt of ammunition.

He slapped the top cover down once he aligned the links of 8.6 × 70 mm ammunition in place and worked the cocking lever, chambering a round into the firing chamber. Hitsu made sure that belt of ammunition coming out from the Bag of Holding was not snagged before he leaned out of cover and let his machine gun rip.

The high powered 8.6 x 70 mm rounds copied after the .338 Norma Magnum were designed for high precision sniper rifles and medium machine guns tore through the cheap concrete, wood, and plaster easily, blowing fist sized holes in the walls. Most managed to penetrate the weaken walls and hammered at the Orcs taking cover.

Hitsu slowly moved out of cover as he hosed down one side of the hallway, suppressing the Orcs down before switching fire to the other side. Loke quickly formed up behind Hitsu and the two advanced down the hallway soaked with Orcish blood and spent casings.


Screams of agony tore from the wiggling tendrils of black smoke as the thermite grenades burnt through the hacked body parts and carpet. Tyrier and his team stepped back from the intense glare of the flames as the concrete and wood of the floor glow red and slowly melted.

The creepy black smoke squirmed and faces could be seen forming within the smoke as it tried to escape the flames. "AHHHHHHIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!"

"What in the thirteen hells are those things?" Wolf asked with wild eye horror.

"Dark magic," Tyrier replied, "Yet, it is not the Orc's magic..."

"Yea, that hooman said something about a Great Serpent god..." Tavel added. "Fark, we dealing with Gods again? The last time we met a Hero with some God artifact, it didn't go so well..."

Tyrier kept quiet as his mind raced while watching the black smoke with the faces dissipated away. "Well. at least they can be destroyed using the same methods to dealing with the undead!"

"See if there is any intel worthwhile here, if not set some charges," Tyrier ordered. "Destroy everything here."

"Squad Three, what's your situation?" Tyrier spoke into his comms.

"Three, we got some company at the ground level hallway but so far nothing we can't handle, over."

"Copy that. One to Two, report!"

"Two, facing heavy resistance, in pursit of a Tango, over!"

"Roger, we are coming your way. Out." Tyrier turned back to the rest who had was still looking around the place. "Anything interesting?"

"Got some accounting books and ledgers," Tavel said. "Nothing else."

"Wolf, you done?" Tyrier asked.

"Almost!" Wolf plugged in the detonator fuze into the last block of explosive that he taped to the side of the wall before he twisted the together the slow burning fuze cords together. "Fifteen minutes fuze?"

Tyrier nodded, "Do it."

Wolf used a worn looking plastic lighter and carefully lit the fuze lines. The slow burning fuze caught fire and started fuzzing away. "Done! Let's get out of here!"

Tyrier led the way out of the Great Hall and into the side door where Hitsu and Loke had gone through to link up with them, leaving behind a pile of molted concrete and charred body parts.


Hitsu checked the rooms on the left while Loke covered the rooms on the right, both finding luxuriously decked out bedrooms for either the top echelon or for VIP guests. They found several females slaves huddled together in one room and they quickly shooed them away.

Loke stopped before one of the last rooms and frowned as he sensed magical energies emitted from behind the closed door. He gestured Hitsu over and stuck breaching explosives on the door before taking cover and blowing the door away.

Almost immediately a magic array activated and several fireballs exploded outwards. The fireballs splashed themselves harmless against the other side of the walls while Hitsu and Loke entered after the trap had activated.

As they entered, they saw a large room with several worktables littered with slave collars or artifacts of sorts. Crouching behind the bed as a young male hunched protectively over a female slave.

"HANDS UP! SHOW ME YOUR HANDS!" Hitsu and Loke roared at the couple. "UP! UP! UP!"

The two dazed from the explosion reacted too slowly for Hitsu's liking, and he pushed them face down against the bed while Loke switched over to check out the room for any other occupants. "Clear!"

"Kid's a mage!" Loke whispered to Hitsu as they planned their next move. "What do we do?"

"Secure them?" Hitsu asked while Loke shook his head.

"What happens if the Palace burns down," Loke said. "If they are tied up, they can't escape."

"But clearly he isn't a slave," Hitsu replied. "No slave collar and from the looks of the things, he seems to be the one doing the slave binding contracts. He could be one of them."

"Fark, I better call it in," Loke cursed. "One, this is Two."

"One, send."

"Two, we might have an HVT here. Over."

"One, tag him and bag him, we pick him up later, five mikes, out!"

"Well, you heard the boss!" Loke said. "Tag and bag him!"

Hitsu gave a shrug before whipping out cable ties and roughly bound the kid's thumbs together behind his back. "You do anything stupid, I kill you and your little girlfriend on the spot!"

"NOO! Leave her be!" The kid cried out. "She's innocent!"

"Damn," Hitsu whistled. "Kid's a romantic!"

Loke rolled his eyes, "Tag and bag her too!"

Hitsu laughed before tying the frightened girl up too and slipped a hood over both their prisoners and they stood watch, waiting for Squad One to arrive.

A short while later, their comms crackled, "One to Two, coming in, hold your fire!"

Hitsu and Loke relaxed their hold on their weapons as they saw someone waving their hand from the doorway. "Come in!"

Wolf did a quick peek before he entered the room with the rest. "Two HVTs?"

"Yup," Hitsu nodded. "Tag and bagged them."

"Where's the hooman?" Tyrier asked.

"Should be in there," Hitsu gestured to the last room. "We cleared all the rooms except that one."

Tyrier nodded, "Knock them out." He gestured to the two on the bed.

Loke removed his medkit from his harness and removed two syringes of tranq-shot before poking it into the fleshy part of their butts, dumping the chemicals into their system. "That should keep them nice and quiet for a couple of hours1"

"Alright! Stack up!" Tyrier called from the doorway. "We go in and take out the hooman, be aware that he might have some pact with some dark Gods!"

"Aww shit! More stuff involving Gods?" Hitsu cursed. "Why can't the Gods give us some powers too!"

"Shut it!" Tyrier hissed. "War face on!"

The men formed up before the door and using breaching charges, they blew the door open and tossed in flashbangs as before. Rushing in they found themselves in a room filling with gold decorations all over. Curtains billowed from the open balcony and the bedroom could be seen from an opened door.

The men spread out automatically, checking the whole suite for dangers. Tyrier advanced cautiously through the door into the bedroom when he felt a tingle of arcane energies rising. He swung his weapon to the source of power and saw a fat dark skinned hooman kneeling before a gold idol.

The hooman was muttering something frantically before the gold idol which looked like a large leaf stalk with a wiggly looking worm at the bottom. The hooman which Tyrier recognized as the Armory Sergeant Raman sensed his presense and he turned his double chin head to face Tyrier.

A crazed look was in his blood shot eyes and the hooman grinned stupidly with a strand of saliva dripping down from one corner of his upturned lips. "Too... late... hahahhaha!"

"FARK!" Tyrier squeezed the trigger, stitching across the chest of the hooman with blood flowers. He paused when he saw the tell tale smoke tendrils coming out from the wounds of the fat hooman laying on the side next to the idol which was flecked with the hooman's blood.

He sensed an ominous feeling coming from the gold idol and he dug into his pouches and pulled out all the explosives he has.

He quickly tore a piece of fuze cord and jammed it into the explosives before lighting it with a simple flame spell and tossed it onto the idol and ran out of the room.


A note from neo Koh

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