Norshelm, Rothschild's Estate
Mills and the rest stood behind the barricaded doors and windows, hearing the sudden firecracker like popping in the city. The crowd of crazies constantly battered against the barriers as they tried to force their way in.
"Yes!" Mills yelled in excitement. "The cavalry has arrived!"
Seeing flashes of light and echoes of explosions, the remaining Marines stationed at the Rothschild's Estate morale soared and they renewed their vigor against the rampaging crazies before them, using spears and axes instead of their firearms to conserve their ammunition.
The last two helos had already returned back to Orwell's Point for resupply, leaving the Marines and the Rothschild's Houseguards defending the Estate as their stronghold against the crazies.
More and more of the crazies flooded into the Noble's District and attacked the estates and manors over the past few days, depleting the defenders' will and strength.
"Sarge!" A disheveled Marine appeared next to Mills and yelled. "There's a signal flare launched from beyond the East walls!"
"It's one of ours!" The Marine reported excitedly. "Reinforcements must be coming!"
Mills patted Lieutenant Trism's shoulder and yelled into his ear, "I am going to the East side to check on something! It might be reinforcements!"
Lt Trism nodded as he concentrated on impaling a crazy with his borrowed spear. "Go! I can look after here!"
The remaining Marines and Household guards had retreated back into the mansion days before, as they do not have the numbers to cover the entire estate walls and fences. The mansion's servants had moved all heavy furniture to blocked the doors and windows while the soldiers fend off the probing hands of the crazies.
Mills rushed to the other side of the mansion, squeezing past the heavily wounded Imperial soldiers that were laid on the sides of the hallway, their blood soaking into the rich carpets while servants and womenfolk tend to their wounds.
He entered a room that had a balcony facing the east side and just caught the dying red flare in the skies. "Fire a red flare back!"
One of the Marines quickly raised a flare gun up and popped a flare out into the skies in answer. Mills pulled out his binoculars and scanned the forested road, recalling that was where the private docks of the nobles were. As he adjusted his binos, he suddenly saw headlights coming out from the forest road and soon several vehicles emerged out into the open.
"Yes! Reinforcements are here!"
Norshelm, Inner City, Citadel
Tyrier leaned against the parapet of the stone walls, glancing at the fiery whirlwind several blocks away that was wreaking havoc. He grinned as he heard the telltale roar of more rockets screaming their way down towards the city and seconds later, explosions sounding like firecrackers slammed into the city, kicking up smoke and flames into the air.
"Welcome to hell, you sons of bitches!" Tyrier yelled out his frustration at the confused crazies milling around outside the wall. "We are coming for you!"
The stranded Claymore One squad and the Marines cheered as they watched the third rocket barrage landing on another area of the city while the Imperial soldiers stared in fear and confusion at the destruction happening to their city.
Titanna climbed up to the top of one of the dragon towers of the Citadel as news of a powerful spell that was ravaging the city reached her. Following her were the rest of the city council members and they crowded around the wide circular platform on the top of the dragon tower that purposed was used for dragons and their riders to land on.
They watched fearfully at the streaks of falling stars dropping from the skies and impacting on the city with huge ear popping explosions. The falling stars seemed never ending, barely taking a turn of a glass before their roars from the skies could be heard and raining down, destroying everything where they landed.
Only Titanna and those who fought against the 'Barbarians' knew that those were their mightly war magic. Titanna did not know how she should feel, for she felt hope that the UN did not abandon her, but at the same time, the destruction of her city made her feel helpless and sad.
She gripped the hem of her sweat and blood stained dress tightly as she watched her city on flames, slowly dying away.
Outskirts of Norshelm, UN Firebase
"Cease reloading!" The order rang out as the hot and sweat crew of the SRMs, stripped down to their pants were standing by to reload the rocket pods. Waves of simmering air, rosed from the superheated rocket pods after the fourth round of firing.
The crew stood down and secured the munitions as they waited for the rocket pods to cool down before they reloaded them again to prevent premature firing of the rockets due to overheating.
The men after finishing their duties gathered at the top of the protective berms and looked at their handiwork. Already the ominous storm clouds that hang over the city for more than a week, had been blasted away by the rocket barrages to be replaced with dozens of thick black plumes of smoke from the burning city.
Shortly after, a light drizzle fell, the raindrops hissing as they landed on the rocket pods and the rain helped to reduce some of the smoke and fire in the city.
"Alright, Thunder boys!" Pike roared at the milling crew. "Check the SRMs! The rain should help cool the pods down faster! Check the temperature, once it is within an acceptable tolerance, reload the pods!"
"The damn fucking city is still standing! We haven't fucking burn it down yet!"
Norshelm, Inner City
Hedone made her way out of rubble supported by several of her followers. It had taken her people almost half a day to dig their way out of her ruined palace. She frowned at the smell of the haze in the air and gestured impatiently for her followers to fan her.
Almost instantly, several of her favorites appeared with fans, fanning the air around her as she left the collapsed premise of a once prominent merchant's manor. "What had happened here?"
"My Queen!" Her loyal follower, Qiem suddenly appeared out from the smoke. He looked worse for wear with his once meticulous robes now dusty and torn. "We are under attack by some... some God!"
"Who is it?" Hedone asked immediately, her senses in high alert. "Where?"
"Your servant does not know which God did this..." Qiem knelt down before Hedone's feet. "But whoever it was, it possessed a power far greater than anything I have ever seen nor heard before! We must leave this city at once!"
Hedone nodded and quickly said to her followers, "Bring that man along! We leave this city at once!"
"This way my Queen!" Qiem stood up and quickly led the way for her and the rest of the converts. "We must hurry, for that God might suddenly attack the city again with falling stars!"
"Falling stars?" Hedone looked up worriedly into the smokey skies. "Zeus? Or is it Uranus or Jupiter?"
She basically has no combat powers, her abilities instead were more civilized as she liked to think of them. If she met any Gods that could fight, she could only use all her powers to flee! With her limited recovered divine powers, she could feel someone or something seemed to be watching her, making her jumpy, nervous, and wanting to escape from whichever God was attacking the city!
Unknown to Hedone, instead of a God watching her every move, it was an Owleye UAV hovering over the city. Its electronic brain humming away as it digested every btye of information flowing in from its multiple sensors and cameras into different tiers of importance.
Now it had spotted a large cluster of heat signatures on the move within the city and with its current inputted commands, it highlighted the information before compressing it into a few kilobytes within a microsecond before it tight beamed the data by laser out towards the nearest relay station which will automatically forward the data packet to Forward Marine Command that will call in an artillery barrage.
Just as it was about to sweep another sector, a sudden signal triggered its priority protocols. The Owleye's brain chip processed the information and triple checked the data, even pinging the beacon coming from one of the heat signatures in the group.
It was a United Nations of Man Fleet Command transponder signal that pinged the UAV. The Owleye downloaded the transponder signal's ID code before it tight beamed the data again to the ground with a high priority tag.
Once it has done its job, the UAV happily turned its sensors to the next grid and started sweeping the area for large concentrations of heat signatures to call in artillery fire.
Outskirts of Norshelm, UN Forward Command
The operator in charge of screening the information from the UAV that was dispatched just hours ago after the warp storm had blown away, restoring telecommunications and telemetry of sensors.
He watched the video feed showing the cluster of heat signatures which the computer estimated the numbers to be close to a thousand. He tallied the coordinates with the local map grids and was about to call for a rocket barrage on the location when a high priority tag appeared. He watched as one of the heat signatures had a targeting box overlayed over it with a friendly IFF ID code appearing next to it.
Surprised, he quickly ran the ID code into the military database and seconds later, a file appeared with an image of a handsome looking hooman.
<<< AIRFORCE FIRST LIEUTENANT PETER MITCH >>>
<<< ID CODE UNMF350512191216AM >>>
<<< RACE - HUMAN, CAUCASIAN >>>
<<< LAST KNOWN LOCATION - BLAKE'S WORLD, NORSHELM >>>
<<< CURRENT STATUS - MISSING IN ACTION >>>
"Oh, my gods!" The operator whispered as he read the data streaming out on his screen. "CAPTAIN JAMES!"
"What is it?" James hurried over to the UAV controller station. "What have you got?"
"The missing pilot!" The operator replied excitedly. "We found him... or to be exact his transponder!"
"Where?" James asked as he stared at the UAV feed and at the data shown on the display. "What is his location?"
"Here, sir!" The operator took over manual control of the UAV and turned its sensors towards the group of heat signatures moving towards the city walls.
"Switch to normal vision," James said. "And zoom in, I want to see if it's our guy."
The operator quickly tap a few keys and the live feed jumped, the black and white imagery switched to colors. Drifts of smoke blocked most of the imagery but as the sensors zoomed in, they could briefly see snatches of people moving when the smoke cleared.
A targeting box highlighted one of the figure that appeared to be carried by some others when the smoke cleared enough to be seen.
"Freeze the image and zoom in," James gripped the shoulder of the operator who executed his orders and a frozen image was displayed out. "Zoom in more and clean up the image. Sharpen it more... more..."
The operator expertly cropped the image out and cleaned away the layer of smoke, before sharpening the image, making it clearer. James sucked in a deep breath as the image finally cleared up enough for him to recognize the pilot's features and uniform. "It's our man alright!"
James straightened up and said, "Keep track of where they are heading! I want the UAV to follow them at all times!"
After that James headed to the communications operator and picked up the handset, "Put me through to High Command."
After a while of listening to a series of beeps and tones, the line got connected, "High Command, this is Nova Command."
"High Command, send."
"Nova, we have found traces of our missing pilot. High chance the pilot is still alive and held as a prisoner. Over."
"... Nova, this is Captain Blake. Rescue him if possible without putting your men at risk. If risk of rescue is too high... You are authorized to drop heavy ordnance on him. Do not let them take him alive! Blake out!"