Friday, November 6, 2015

Story Seed - Dead Men Tell No Tales

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"Ready?" Sergeant Jordan asked over the team's comms. A round of nods and affirmative responses followed. "OK then, my condolences to your families," he said as he thumbed the holo display in his helmet on. The view of his head was replaced by a holographically projected skull, awash in blue light, it followed the movement of his head within the helmet. "Ready to drop in thirty," Sergeant Reaper told his team, and the crew of the drop-ship, his voice now modulated with a deeper timber and an echo.

Jordan and his men were part of the United Terran Marine's Vigil program. Outfitted with the latest and greatest tech they were the first in when a new Xeno hot-spot showed up. Each member of the team was the best of the UTM forces for their role, and even still they knew that the odds were skewed heavily against survival on any given mission. As a result Vigil squad had taken to assuming they were already dead at the start of a mission; "resurrection" waited for the survivors afterwards. The skull motif, the black armor with white accents to emulate bones, and the voice modulation were all added as nods to Vigil Squad's particular mindset.

The cabin light changed to red and the floor opened as the craft's belly split to allow the high altitude release. The HUD inside Reaper's help counted down to zero and he launched out and down, plunging into freefall. Behind him the other members of his team followed suit; Anubis, Cerberus, Yama, Hel, and Izanami soon formed a loose ring with Reaper.

"You know the drill, check the corpse on your right," he ordered. A few morbid chuckles sounded out across the comms as the team checked each other's gear, specifically the high powered rocket packs that would slow their descent instead of parachutes. "Green indicators all around, but don't get cocky. Remember this is a standard sweep and point. HQ wants to know where to aim the big guns. Don't screw up and you may just come back to life ... and if not?"

"Dead men tell no tales!" the rest of the squad responded.

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