|Arise Serpentor Arise
Author: Starscream PM
Repost a reimaging of the original 5 part mini series written by Buzz DixionRated: Fiction T - English - Adventure - Words: 23,318 - Reviews: 1 - Favs: 1 - Follows: 1 - Published: 10-03-12 - Status: Complete - id: 8578099
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Arise Serpentor Arise
Bubblegum Crisis is property of AIC/Youmex
Toshimichi Suzuki and Kenichi Sonoda created Bubblegum Crisis
GI Joe is Property of Hasbro and Marvel/Sunbow entertainment all rights reserved.
Gundam and all related names are property of Bandai and Sunrise
Mobile Suit Gundam was created by Yoshiyuki Tomino
Arise Serpentor Arise originally written by Buzz Dixon
Author's notes: Due to an email I've received, I must point out for this fic you must have a working knowledge of Bubblegum Crisis, and Mobile Suit Gundam. So, I must do a little educating, so stow the crap and listen up!
Sylia Stingray, Priss Asagiri, Linna Yamazaki, Nene Romanova, Sylvie and the hardsuits, please refer to the Bubblegum Crisis (The original 2032-2033 OAV series)
Also later on in this fic I'm going to be introducing Aina Sahalin and the Black Tri Stars (Gaia, Ortega and Mash) please refer to Mobile Suit Gundam and Mobile Suit Gundam the 08th MS Team.
For information on the MS-05B Zaku I, MS-06F, MS-06J, and MS-06S Zaku II; MS-07B and B3 Gouf; MS-09 Dom, MSM-07 Z'gok, MSM-04 Acguy; later on the RX-78-2 Gundam, RX-79g Gundam, RGM-79g GM and the RX-77 Guncannon please refer to Mobile Suit Gundam, and also to this URL: .net
Enough of that crap.
Chapter I: Downtime brought to a screeching halt
"Sucker, you are outta luck!" exclaimed Roadblock from the pitcher's mound
"I'm going nail that sucker right outta here!" Priss retorted at the plate. A month has past since the destruction of the Apsalus and the Joes deserved a little downtime and organized a friendly baseball game. Roadblock threw a fastball and Priss slammed the ball into right field, "It's outta here!"
"I got it, I got!" Nene ran trying to get ahead of the ball but it sailed over her head, "I don't got it."
Sitting under a tree, Shipwreck composed a letter to his girlfriend of the month as the baseball Priss hit came down on his head, then rebounded in into General Hawk's hand. "A Joe is supposed to be alert Shipwreck, if a pop fly can hit you, Cobra can." Shipwreck scrambled to attention as Hawk tossed the ball to him while walking off.
The GI Joe command staff toured the grounds noting that the team has been slacking off lately. "Weren't you little soft on him, General?" complained Beachhead who was dissatisfied by the lack of professionalism on base.
"The team has seen a lot action Beachhead, it's good for them to relax. The Apsalus incident really took a lot out of us." Flint replied.
"Maybe if I were in charge that would all change."
"But you're not, first comes Hawk, then Duke, then Grey Fox, then me and finally you," Flint reminded Beachhead of everyone's position in the chain of command.
"Perhaps that will all change someday?"
"Actually, there is merit in both arguments made by Hawk and Flint. Granted we are entitled to a break. But on the other hand ever since the introduction of the Zaku and now Mobile Armor, has made Cobra much more dangerous, and we must be on a heightened state of alert." Sylia said, the introduction of the Knight Sabers' prototype Hardsuits has been the catalyst for Cobra to begin their own production of Hardsuits, the old balance of power.
"Excuse me," asked a female sergeant as she climbed out of a jeep. "I'm looking for the CO of this outfit."
"You've found him. General Hawk."
"Sgt. Sylvie Anderson, sir." Replied Sylvie as she saluted Hawk, handing over her file and her orders.
Thumbing through Sylvie's file, Hawk noticed she was a member of the 101st Airborne, a demolition and anti-armor specialist; Also recently reenlisted. "I see you've requested this assignment after you reenlisted."
"Yes sir, I figured I could have a blast on this team," she smiled.
"Yeah, well let's get one thing straight Anderson, that you will maintain military discipline at all times, and I advise you to stay away from Sgt. Asagiri." Beachhead told the new Sgt. getting within inches of her. Sylvie had to breath through her mouth so she didn't experience Beachhead's lack of deodorant.
"Because she is trouble."
A sly smile grew on her lips. "I like trouble." Sylvie told Beachhead as she noticed Priss heading towards the barracks. "Hey Sarge!"
Catching a glimpse of the new arrival, "Sylvie?"
The two shared the moment of a friendly hug. "I see the Army had enough brains to keep a beer guzzling, foul mouthed ass kicker like you."
"It's great to see you again Sylvie, it going be like we were in 101st again. Come on I got someone for you to meet."
Observing the motor pool. The command staff watched Lift Ticket perform regular maintenance on a Tomahawk with Lifeline "assisting." "Hey Lifeline hand me that crescent wrench," Lift Ticket asked as he worked.
"For crying out loud, why the hell not?!"
"Because you're asking me to help with maintenance of the Tomahawk's weapons which goes against my principles."
For a guy who doesn't like violence, he sure chose a strange bunch to hang around with. Pacifists in GI Joe, what is happening to this outfit?"
"Beachhead, are you familiar with the Hippocratic oath?"
"According to the oath, a physician is obligated to relieve the suffering of others regardless of politics, or their uniform and are forbidden under any circumstance to bring suffering on their patients. Some doctors and medical professionals would follow that code of medical ethics to the letter."
Beachhead didn't say anything, he hated it when Sylia was right; in his opinion he didn't really care for Sylia or her damned well above average intelligence. Next the group saw Cross Country working on his HAVOC. "You call this military discipline? Cross Country is putting a CD player in his HAVOC!"
"Now don't you fret none, Beachhead. This here is fighting music," Cross Country drawled.
"Oh why's that?"
"Every time I play it, someone wants to punch me out!"
"Like last Friday." Sylia mentioned
"What happen?" Hawk asked, also Flint, Duke and Beachhead were curious since the four were off base either on a mission or official business. So Sylia was left with task of temporary top kick*
"Cross Country made the grave mistake of putting a Garth Brooks album in the juke box in the company bar, when I came in I saw a fire ax in the juke box, Priss receiving the applauds of the establishment and Cross Country mourning the loss of his favorite Garth Brooks' album." Sylia understood where was Priss was coming from, she hated country music too, but Priss had to be punished, her pay was to be docked for the repairs to the juke box.
At an abandoned warehouse on New York's waterfront. Cobra Commander watched as his Vipers suit up armed their Zaku I and Zaku II Hardsuits and his Crimson Guards suiting up in the new Dom and Gouf Hardsuits. Scrap Iron and Destro were making final adjustments on several BAT groups in Zaku I Hardsuits. "according to my sources, the GI Joe team has been on its collective ass for a while. This is our time to strike!" Only to himself, he was grateful the GI Joe team intervened against Sahalin and his Apsalus, he and the rest of his senior staff would have gone up in a flash of light. The sounds of servos snapped him back to the present, the Doms and Goufs were being loaded on a couple of big rigs, along with the Stuns and Zakus.
Back at GI Joe headquarters in C&C, Dial Tone and Mainframe were playing Star Trek Elite Force on COOP play blasting away Borg Drones with phaser rifles. "What in the bloody blue blazes are you doing? You suppose to be monitoring our outer perimeter." Berated Beachhead, a multi-billion dollar computer wasn't meant for playing games, but Dial Tone, Mainframe, Breaker and Cypher always broke that rule.
"Relax Beachhead sometimes a diversion from staring at monitors can prevent you getting the thousand yard stare?" Mainframe said, cycling through the security cameras until one showed a column of big rigs.
The alarms sound as the first big rig smashed opens the front gate. As each rig stopped, the trailers would collapse open, releasing Stuns, Zakus, Goufs and Doms. "COBRA!"
In C&C, the command staff watched with shocked surprise as Cobra began their assault on the base. "Duke form a defense line try to keep Cobra away from our Command Center. Grey Fox mobilize your Knight Sabers."
"Yes sir," Duke and Grey Fox said in unison.
In the quarters of Cover Girl and Wolf; Priss, Cover Girl and Sylvie who was known as Firestorm were knocking back some beer as Sylvie was telling Cover Girl, the night of Fort Campbell's infamous Marine Massacre. She noticed how Priss and Cover Girl looked at each other. "Is there something I should know about you two?" She asked
"Actually, Sylvie. Courtney is my lover," Priss revealed as she took Cover Girl's hand into her's.
"Oh…." Sylvie got out, she was about to speak until the alert sounded, Dial Tone's voice rang through the PA. "All personnel we are under attack! Repeat under attack! All personnel are now on combat status 1! Wolf, Dagger and Cypher, report to the ready room!"
"Aw shit! Time to punch the ol' time clock!" Priss complained
Mauler Tanks and HAVOCs began to mobilize and attack the approaching Cobra forces, "All Dom units engage the approaching the armored units. All Goufs and Zaku Is provide fire support for the Doms!" The Commander ordered. Several Doms armed with Raketen Bazookas sped towards the Joes' armored units while the Goufs fired their shield mounted 25mm Vulcan guns and the Zaku Is fired their bazookas. The fire from the Goufs was able to pierce the thick armor of the Maulers.
The Joes' defense line began to crumble until the Stuns completely encircled them. "Why is Cobra Commander using Stuns and Zakus? The Stuns are fast, but the lack the armor or the punch of the old HISS Tanks. The Zakus can't take much of a beating either." Hawk commented as he shot out the eye sensor of a Zaku II with his handgun.
"Maybe ol' Chrome Dome is running low on…"
"Hold on!" Hawk interrupted as he saw Dom and Gouf suits approaching.
"What are those?" Duke asked
"Cobra Hardsuits, must be new models!"
"Superb! Cobra forces Advance!" Cobra Commander ordered.
"Unwise Commander…" Started Tomax
"You should keep some our forces…." Continued Xamot
"In reserve!" The Twins finished in unison."
"Balderdash you twin morons! You're just jealous my authority!" The Commander told the Crimson Guard Commanders as he committed more Cobra Hardsuits to the battle. "At long last the Joes are doomed, and all because of my brilliant leadership!" The Commander watched as his forces continue to attack.
"Prepare for hand-to-hand combat Joes!" Hawk ordered just before he saw three Goufs were struck down by beam fire and two Doms destroyed by a hail of missile fire.
Standing at the top of the main building were the Knight Sabers in their Hardsuits with beam rifles in hand and Wolf holding not only her beam rifle but her 6-tube rocket launcher. "Knight Sabers, it's showtime!" Cried Grey Fox, diving into the fray followed by Wolf and Cypher, Dagger pulled out her beam sabers from the compartments of the legs of her Hardsuit before diving into the fight.
"Ah shit!" The Commander grumbled, "All Doms and Goufs engage the Knight Sabers!"
Touching down, Wolf discarded her rocket launcher and pulled out one of her beam sabers, stabbing a Dom as it sped towards her right through the chest. Suddenly a Zaku II grabbed her in a bear hug. The Zaku began to tighten its grip, crushing Wolf within her suit. Activating the suit's strength booster, Wolf broke free, then drove her fingers through the chest armor and lifted the Cobra Hardsuit over her head. "HOLY CRAP!" Cobra Commander watched in abject fear seeing Zaku and Viper operator being lifted over Wolf's head. Noticing a Gouf preparing his 25mm Vulcan gun, Wolf threw the Zaku at the Gouf.
In the motor pool, Covergirl was getting her Wolverine ready to move out as Firestorm ran in with a Stinger missile launcher and a pair of M-4s. Firestorm looked at Covergirl's Wolverine for a moment; on the missile launcher, the words "Sealed With A Kiss," were stenciled along with a lip print. "Who were those in the body armor?"
"The Knight Sabers," replied Covergirl as she started up her Wolverine. "A high tech unit formed by Grey Fox."
The Wolverine pulled out of the motor pool and approached Cobra's left flank. "Say good night, babe!" quipped Firestorm, firing a Stinger at a Stun. As the Stinger struck the Stun, several BATs controlled Zaku Is headed for the Wolverine.
"Say adios you assholes!" Covergirl fired a full rack of missiles; some the missiles hit their targets while a couple of Zakus took proximity damage.
The few still functioning, the BAT controlled Zaku Is lifted their bazookas and fired at the Wolverine. "OH SHIT!" screamed Firestorm and Covergirl in unison, before bailing out, Covergirl grabbed her M-4. As the two ran, a Gouf snared Covergirl by the neck with its heat rod.
Spinning around Firestorm readied her Stinger missiles. "Fuck! I can't get a clear shot!" she swore. After taking down a Zaku II, Wolf quickly saw Covergirl being strangled by the Gouf's heat rod, in a split second Wolf fired her beam rifle destroying the Gouf's heat rod. Covergirl fell to her knees gasping for air. Getting her shot, Firestorm took it, firing two stingers into the Gouf's chest.
As she fought, Dagger was thankful for the magnetically coated joints, she could attack in a smooth, fluid motion with no lag time. With her beam saber, Dagger sliced a Dom in half.
The Joes watched the Knight Sabers taking down the Cobra Hardsuits, and Covergirl and Firestorm fighting them off as well. "Looks like we got ourselves a second front! Let's take 'em apart! YO JOE!" General Hawk followed by several other Joes with guns blazing
By now everything was going to hell, Cobra Commander watched his decimated Doms and Goufs fall back and retreat. Cobra Commander figured that was the best COA. "Retreat! Abandon the BATs and flee!" The commander ordered his remaining Stuns and Zaku IIs.
As Cobra pulled out, the Joes finished off the remaining Zaku Is. Hawk surveyed the damage, taking note of the wounded and the dead. Despite us winning, we deserved to lose. Hawk sadly thought, with how lax the team got, Cobra should have done more damage.
Later that evening, in Hawk's office, he was going over some paperwork, and some reports about this morning's incident when Sylia came in with some of her reports. "General, here are some more of those damage figures you've asked for."
"What about the prototypes?"
"The suits took some mild damage, beam rifles and sabers are currently being recharged."
Leaning back in his chair, Hawk sighed as he looked at Sylia. Looking back, she could tell that everything that transpired took a toll on her CO and friend. "Sylia, what happen out there?"
"I don't know," Sylia threw up her hands as she sat down, "I think, we've gotten complacent, Clayton. Just because Cobra is lying low, doesn't mean, we can have a spring break. But I do feel we are entitled to a little downtime, just as long we maintain a constant state of readiness."
Hawk leaned on his desk, "Sylia, I think, we've gotten sloppy, and I know who can whip this outfit into shape."
"Sir, not him!" Sylia knew who Hawk was talking about. The person in question would eat Priss alive if he got in her face. Hell, even Sylia was intimidated by him, and that ain't easy.
"Sylia, we both agree that we need to do something about this situation before it gets worse," Hawk told her, and he was right. That last attack could be of things yet to come.
"Clayton, whatever your decision is you have my support."
"I appreciate that Sylia." Hawk summed up a half smile and Sylia turned and walked out. I can never get over how attractive she is, he thought, and then he shook his head of those somewhat lecherous thoughts. Oh for god sakes, I'm her commanding officer and her friend. Hell! I'm old enough to be her father.
15 minutes later in the gym, Sylia worked out on the punching bag while Priss held it for her. Sylia always worked up a good sweat this way, also the punching bag has been rather therapeutic, she used to do this back at West Point before exams. "So Hawk is calling for a special DI to whip this unit into shape?"
"Yep," Sylia answered with labored breath, continuing to punch the bag, "He felt this base was turning into a country club."
"I seem to notice a nine hole golf course being set up," Priss laughed
"So do you know this DI we're getting."
"Yeah, he's called Sgt. Slaughter. A DI assigned to the GI Joe team. But he handles problem recruits. The guy makes Beachhead look tame."
Sylia stopped punching and walked over to a bench, then pulled a towel and a bottle of water out of her gym bag. "Priss, we've gotten too complacent. Throughout history, the greatest threat to the military was complacency."
"During the Roman Empire, the Romans extended their empire in all directions. They were the most powerful military force on earth at the time, who had a strict sense of discipline within the ranks. Their egos clouded the judgment of many military officers as discipline began breakdown, and the Roman government was becoming increasingly corrupt. With madmen as Emperors…"
"Oh? In what way?"
"Well, during the reign of Emperor Caligula, he knocked up his own sister, gave her a rather crude abortion and wolfed down a light snack in the process."
"I don't understand?" Priss asked, she didn't know much history especially ancient history.
"Caligula took a knife, cut open the womb and ate the fetus," Sylia explained, she noticed Priss turned a little pale
"That is some nasty shit!"
"Yes Priss," Sylia continued, "Due to the absolute corruption of the government, factional fighting and the breakdown of their military. Tribes like the Gaul, the Huns and the Visigoths brought the Roman Empire to their knees. Once the greatest Empire on Earth, destroyed by the very people they've conquered. We could face the same fate with Cobra, because we've gotten complacent, also political bickering and individual agendas blinding people to clear and present dangers."
Hearing all this made Priss chuckle a bit. "What's so funny,"
"Well, I asked a simple question and you gave me a history lesson."
"Priss, there is old saying, that those who don't learn the past mistake of history are doomed to repeat it. A prime example would be Germany and Japan, since in their history books, they refuse to teach some of the darker chapters of their history, such as the rise of Hitler and the Nazi Reich, and the Holocaust; The Japanese will teach about the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki but not the Bataan Death March or the bombing of Pearl Harbor."
Back on Cobra Island, Cobra Commander called a senior staff meeting. "I was pleased on how the Goufs and Doms functioned in combat, but the BATs in the Zaku Is were more like wind-up dolls!"
"The BATs were perfect," Dr. Mindbender defensively said, "except that the Zaku I suits overloaded the BATs improved AI and you should have deployed them correctly without the Zaku I suits!"
Leaning back in his chair, Cobra Commander was very calm before he let Mindbender have it. "Dr. Mindbender, you are Cobra's Chief Science Officer," The Commander calmly mentioned before he reminded him of another obscure fact, "There's nothing in your file claiming you're a military genius!" Then the Commander rose from his chair, "If you'll excuse me gentlemen (and I use the term in the most broadest possible sense), I have other matters to attend to."
After the Commander left, Dr. Mindbender gave an exasperated sigh as he rubbed his temples.
Entering his office, Cobra Commander was greeted by his aide Caroline. Caroline stood an inch shorter of Cynthia with shoulder length brown hair. She filled in for Cynthia during her assignment on Project Apsalus and replaced after her death. Despite being rather ruthless, Cobra Commander was very fond of Cynthia, the only person he ever trusted, the only person who has seen the Commander without his helmet or faceplate. Cobra Commander would even freely allowed her to give her opinions and suggestions on his plans, ideas and decisions; he valued her inputs. "Do you want me to get you some coffee, sir?" Caroline asked, snapping Cobra Commander out of his deep thought.
"Uh, yes I would like some coffee, my dear," he responded, then he went to his desk and turned on his computer. "Computer, this is Cobra Commander, recognize voice ID."
"Authorization Cobra Commander sigma-5-tau-3-8."
"Computer, I want access to available data on the Knight Sabers' Hardsuits, include recent combat data from all Cobra Hardsuit computers."
The computer began compiling all requested data. First was the YHS-01 Hardsuit assigned to Grey Fox, a general purpose command Hardsuit with a high output beam rifle and beam sabers. The YHS-01 was capable of analyzing and processing large amounts of tactical and intelligence data. Next was the YHS-02 Hardsuit assigned to Wolf was a general purpose and assault Hardsuit; the YHS-02 not only carried conventional small arms and beam weapons, but a six tube rocket launcher, a 20 mm cannon and a Hyper-Bazooka. How much firepower can they put on that suit? The Commander thought.
The YHS-02 also possessed a 'strength booster' that could boost the enhanced strength of the Hardsuit. No wonder that woman was able to lift a Zaku over her head. Cobra Commander realized, while Caroline handed him a cup of coffee. Wolf actually scares him; he has never seen a woman with such an iron will or the anger that she would be feared in hell. He would never want to face her alone. Actually he had fought Wolf alone before, during the operation to capture of the prototype hardsuits, Cobra captured the suit along with Wolf and Covergirl. The two managed bring the house down. There he faced off against Wolf in his Zaku, and she fought like a woman possessed.
Getting back to the hardsuits, the next shown was the YHS-03 hardsuit assigned to Dagger. The YHS-03 was not only a general purpose hardsuit but a close combat suit. Apparently the YHS-03 only equipped with a pair of beam sabers. According to the data, the YHS-03 had a stealth device, that could be used during insertion missions. Also the joints of her suit have been magnetically coated; the data indicated that this reduced the friction in suit's joints to near zero, so it won't impede the user's fast reflexes and allow more freedom of movement. The coating process is unknown.
Finally was the YHS-04 assigned to Cypher. The YHS-04 was a general purpose hardsuit, but a communications and Electronic Warfare suit. This suit was armed with a scaled down version of the prototype beam rifle. The YHS-04 was also equipped with latest ECM and sensor packages and also is able to interface with any computer system. It would seem the YHS-04 is a hacker's dream come true.
The prototype hardsuits had a frame of high density titanium alloy; the armor and shields were composed of a ceramic/titanium composite, the process of creating the composite was unknown. The computer also provided data that the YHS-01 and YHS-02 could be equipped with upgrade modules. "Computer, explain upgrade modules."
"There is no available information on the upgrade modules."
Turning off his computer, Cobra Commander removed his helmet and faceplate, he began to drink his coffee. Hmm, it appears the US military has developed a far more advanced set of suits than our Zakus, Goufs and Doms. Apparently its quality against quantity.
Breaking his train of thought, a small beeping came from a panel on his desk. "Yes," he said after pressing the intercom button.
"Sir, I want to inform you the shipment has arrived."
"Very well, I'll be at the airfield shortly."
Arriving at the airfield 20 minutes later, Cobra Commander with a shocked expression under his faceplate as he saw 5 huge transport planes. "What are these?!"
"I believe they're the new Gaw Attack Carriers," Caroline answered.
The Commander approached a Colonel who was supervising the offloading of the Gaw's cargo. "What do you have here, Colonel?"
"Well, new fighters, armored vehicles and hardsuits."
The Commander inspected the new hardsuits and they looked meaner than the Gouf B3 custom. "Commander these are the Z'Gok, Z'Gok-E, Hy-Gogg and Acguy. They're the new amphibious suits."
"I see," Cobra Commander remembered being handed the design specs and authorizing the project just after the Dom and Gouf were entered into activate duty.
The Colonel also showed the Commander the new Dopp fighters and Magella Attack Tanks. Cobra Commander was certainly pleased with the new equipment, but then Caroline stepped in with some news for the Commander. "They what?"
"Dr. Mindbender apparently called a senior staff meeting while keeping you out of the loop," Caroline answered, being a Crimson Guard, she did have her contacts.
"I see, well shall we look in on their little tea party?"
In the senior staff conference room, Dr. Mindbender addressed Destro, the Baroness, Xamot and Tomax that Cobra yearns for a new leader since Cobra Commander hasn't been quite effective. "Since we don't have the time to find a new leader, I suggest we create one."
The Senior staff gasped at Mindbender's idea. "Mindbender, what you're proposing is close to playing god," Destro stated, he knew what Mindbender was offering was a step up from Parents asking for designer babies.
"Destro, we must act quickly, our lives are at stake if Cobra Commander finds out." Mindbender turned on a large wall monitor showing the double helix of DNA. "I propose through gene therapy and genetic engineering to create the Cobra Emperor.
"Sgt. punch up the security cameras in the conference room." The Commander ordered as he and Caroline entered the security office.
"Yes, Commander," the Tele Viper brought up the camera for the conference room. "I'll patch in the audio, sir."
Cobra Commander intently listened on Mindbender explaining how he was going to create this 'Cobra Emperor.' To say the least Cobra Commander was livid that his own command staff was trying to replace him; this was just as bad as Sahalin and his Apsalus. "Get a squad of Crimson Guards down there, but have them wait until I get there."
The command staff continued with their planning until the doors blew open revealing Cobra Commander, Caroline and a squad of Crimson Guards all with weapons drawn. "Well Gentlemen, what do we have here? Hmm. Perhaps plotting the most vile act of base treason!"
"If you get rid of us there will be no one to follow your orders," Destro mocked.
"You lie! My guard is loyal and will not take part in your coup d état!"
"Oh really?" Destro replied, all Xamot and Tomax did was give a nonverbal command and the Crimson Guards switched sides. "You were saying?"
Noticing the turn the situation has taken, Cobra Commander figured a more tactful approach is required. "Gentlemen, I'm willing to admit I've error on several occasions and perhaps this Emperor of yours can rally the troops. I command you to create this being. SIEG COBRA!" Cobra Commander order before leaving, "Get someone to replace those doors."
"Sir, you're not going along with this?" Caroline exclaimed as the two walked down the corridor.
"Of course not, I didn't become Cobra Commander by being stupid or careless."
"Of course not, sir." Smiled the aide, she was being sincere
"Let Mindbender create his Emperor out from DNA mish mash. I'll manipulate it like a puppeteer to a puppet. I'll be an even greater power behind the throne!"
At 0400 hours a bugle played reveille over PA system waking the Joes with much protest with the exception of Beachhead. Assembling on exercise field, the team was greeted with a bright spotlight mounted on a Humvee. "Good Morning Sleepyheads!" Bellowed a big bull of a man in wearing porkpie hat, "I'm glad that you hauled lazy carcasses out of bed! Now you worthless sacks of crap have had too soft! You suppose to be keeping us safe from Cobra! Starting to today that gonna change! Give your hearts to America, Joes because your asses belong to me! Now start running!"
With that the Joes started running and Priss remarking to Cover Girl and Firestorm if it was too late to desert.
A few hours later in his office, General Hawk was going over some paperwork; he was pleased that Joes were back in shape. There was a slight rapping against his door. "Come."
Entering in Air Force dress blues was Captain Aina Sahalin, code name Ghost Rider, a former Cobra Strato Viper who defected to the GI Joe team during the Apsalus Incident. "Captain Aina Sahalin reporting for duty, sir." She said handing Hawk her orders.
Skimming through her orders, he noticed she requested this assignment. "Forgive me, Captain this not personal, but you may be looked upon with some mistrust."
"I understand sir. I just want prove myself."
Hawk leaned back in his chair, so far she was being honest. "Why did you choose to defect?"
"My reason for defecting was my brother developed the Apsalus to eliminate Cobra Commander and the rest of the senior staff. Also I couldn't have the thought of that Mobile Armor being used on civilian targets on my consciences. My friend and mentor Norris Packard supported my decision to defect."
"Norris Packard was a Strato Viper, right?"
"Yes sir, he was my senior ever since I joined Cobra's Air Corp. One of the more decent members of Cobra."
On of the hardest stereotype to break was people who join Cobra were not for power or greed; Aina motives were just to look for a place to belong and believed in the ideals of Cobra.
In the conference room, Mindbender convened another meeting. "For our efforts to create our new leader we this person," Mindbender showed a picture of a tall, slim, exotic woman, who was half Japanese and half Indian with an English accent. "her name is Doctor Naomi Hunter, one of the leading experts in genetics. I want to use the Dreadnoks."
"The Dreadnoks," Destro sneered, "Mindbender, this task requires the utmost delicacy and the Dreadnoks don't specialize in delicate matters."
"Yes, Destro normally I would agree, but Zartan did recommend two people he knows for such matters."
Destro wanted to see it to believe it. Since the Dreadnoks were loud, disgusting and stupid. They had no sense of discretion or subtly.
Back at GI Joe Headquarters, the team was being put through hell as Sgt. Slaughter continued to whip the outfit into shape. "Come you maggots, I want you kiss that dirt," he bellowed during push-ups, "Cypher, I don't want your ass sticking up like the tail section of a 747!" The Sgt. noticed Cypher's poor push up position. Looking from the corner of his eye, Slaughter saw Wolf laughing at his comment. "Just keep laughing Wolf, you're going be doing push ups until I get tired!"
Settling down on a bench, Priss poured water from her water bottle down her throat almost as if she was dying of thirst. From head to toe, Priss was covered in sweat. Sitting next to her was equally tired and sweat soaked Lt. Stingray. "How are you holding up, Lt.?"
"I hadn't been this tired since my Ranger training, there I had to train with very little rest or sleep. But I'm managing."
Next, in full pack, the Joe team had to run a mile cross country in the rain. "Come on! Get the lead out! Pick up your aching feet and move! Move! Move!" he ordered
"We got to remember how to win! Grit your teeth and dig on in!" Roadblock stated as a morale booster.
"Better, not perfect, but better."
Chapter II: The Birth of Serpentor
Glancing at the clock on her Window's desktop, "9:30?" Dr. Naomi Hunter realized. This was a bad day for her, she was stuck in the lab and in meetings practically all day without even stopping for a break or even to eat. Putting in overtime would be perfect capper to a rotten day, she mused.
With her office locked up, she walked down the down only to be stopped by a woman in a black suit. "May I help you?"
"Dr. Naomi Hunter?"
"Agent Megan Roberts, National Security Advisory." Replied the agent, flashing her ID card. "Come with me please."
"May I ask why?"
"At this time, no."
With no other choice, Dr. Hunter followed Agent Roberts to a black SUV complete with government markings. Opening the door, Dr. Hunter realized that the occupants were not NSA.
"Get in Doc!" 'Agent Roberts' ordered with her Australian accent showing.
"Whoa, we didn't know that we were picking up a hot woman?" Ripper stated reaching out to cop a feel of Naomi's pert breast.
Before he could, Zarana pulled out her M9. "Remember you bloody dingo, Mindbender instructed us to bring Dr. Hunter to him unharmed and untouched. Zartan also made it very clear if anything happens to her, Mindbender will not pay us. If that were to happen, I will shoot your two best friends and I'm not talking about Torch and Buzzer!" Zarana told Ripper, her gun aimed at his crotch.
"I get the picture, Zarana,"
"Good. Floor it Thrasher!"
The passage of time was lost to Naomi. She couldn't tell how much time has passed between her kidnapping and being escorted by Crimson Guards to a conference room. "Dr. Hunter a pleasure to meet you."
"Dr. Mindbender, I presume?"
"Yes, my dear and you've been given an opportunity of a lifetime…you're going to help us create our Cobra Emperor."
Expressions of shock and disbelief crossed Naomi's face, he must be nuts to propose such an undertaking, create a human being completely from scratch.
"I've read about you, Dr. Hunter, you've been regarded as one of the best geneticist in the world. You were part of the project in mapping the human genome. Your talents will be most useful."
"If I refuse to comply?"
"You will be killed, but if you cooperate, I will insure you're taken care of and released once your task is complete."
Seeing no choice, Naomi complied
The next morning, Sylia entered Hawk's office, curious why he called her; she was just settled in her office and as part of her routine before she started working, Sylia would take between a half to an hour for a cup of coffee and watch Fox News. "You wanted to see me, sir?"
"Yes, I do, Sylia," Hawk nodded, "What do you know of the Genome Foundation?"
"It's a prominent genetic think tank, just outside New York City."
"Very good, last night there was a kidnapping. I want it checked out."
An arched eyebrow was only part of Sylia's response, Hawk was telling her to look into a mere kidnapping? "Clayton, why are we getting involved if this would be handled by the FBI?"
"I don't know, call it a hunch."
Exiting Hawk's office, Sylia was left with puzzlement at her commander's statement.
Taking Nene along with her, Sylia drove out to the Genome Foundation, which was a two hour drive. On the way, Sylia instructed the younger woman, she will posing as her aide, also her talents may be required.
The two Knight Sabers arrived at the crime scene. "Lt. Stingray, Army Intelligence," Sylia flashed her ID.
"Agent Williams, FBI," replied a medium build, black man, "I'm the chief investigator."
"Very well, what happened?"
"Forgive me for asking Lt. but why is G-2* interested in a kidnapping?"
"I was sent to investigate any possible terrorist connection." Sylia stated.
For Agent Williams things were not adding up, Lt. Stingray said she was Army Intell, but why did she have the markings of Special Ops?
While Sylia and Agent Williams questioned the foundation's director and several coworkers of the missing person, Nene questioned the foundation's security chief and received a duplicate of the surveillance footage of the incident.
En route back to base, Sylia asked if Nene would like to stop lunch. At the redheaded Knight Saber's suggestion the two stopped at a TGIFriday's. Glancing at the menu, Sylia set her mind on the crab salad, a cup of French Onion soup and coffee; she felt like having seafood. Nene chose the mushroom/Swiss burger, a salad with ranch dressing on the side and a coke.
"So did you get any information about the kidnapping?" Nene asked after the waiter served their drinks.
"The person's name is Dr. Naomi Hunter," Sylia placed the small bowl of coffee creamer off to the side. "A highly respected geneticist." She added.
"Never heard of her," Nene said off handed, dropping her straw into her glass.
Naturally, Sylia wasn't surprised, Nene's knowledge of genetics besides the basics taught in a high school bio class was close to nil. Taking a sip of her coffee, she discovered the coffee's bitter flavor but there nothing she could do about it. "I've read about her, she and several other geneticist mapped out the human genome."
"You mean DNA?" Nene asked glancing over Sylia's shoulder seeing the server came with their soup and salad.
"Actually it's mapping out the genes in a DNA strand. The purpose is to map out what a person's strength and weakness are, and what a person is capable of."
"Is this about those designer babies, I've heard about?"
"In some ways yes. From the standpoint of the military, over 40 genes were identified as the soldier genes, ranging from tactical thinking to the proverbial killer instinct."
"Oh come on, Sylia, not everyone has the killer instinct," Nene smiled, lifting a fork full of salad to her mouth.
"Nene, allow me to enlighten you on a little fact, the human being always had a killer instinct, it was necessary for survival, over time as man evolved becoming more rational, such instincts remained; but with the right conditions and stimuli can bring the killer instinct to surface, even in you."
"Sylia, this genome mapping could it be used in other ways?"
"Nene, genetics raises a lot of moral and ethical questions. One is, are we responsible enough to play god. Two, is it right to create a human only to be disposable. Also you have narrow minded people who are willing to shell out huge amounts of money for the perfect child or a clone of themselves or loved one."
"Sylia would you have a clone made of your parents or your uncle, if you could?"
"No. They would just be clones, they would be no longer unique. They would not be the same people I knew and loved. Also there has to be a time to accept death as a part of life and know when to say good-bye." With that said, Sylia quietly asked Nene to change the subject.
An hour later, Nene settled in front of a computer, popping the video into a VCR she watched the camera footage on her computer monitor. "Hey Breaker! Run an ID on an Agent Megan Roberts, NSA!"
Breaker ran the name with the NSA. "I have it!" Breaker called Nene over. "Agent Megan Roberts, 10 year veteran, her body was found 2 weeks ago."
"Hmm. Something stinks here, worse than Beachhead after he's spent 3 days in the jungle in the middle of summer!" Nene stated, rushing back to her computer, she ran 'agent Roberts' picture through a computerized mugshot database. It was going to be a while, so she whipped out a copy of Mad Magazine she swiped from a stash Priss had in the Motopool, since she worked there. If Priss finds out, she'll kill me. Oh well, who wants to live forever? She smiled to herself reading "Mad looks at…" article; secured in the knowledge that when she incurs that wraith of god, in other words, Priss when she's angry, Nene will run like hell.
The computer ran the face of the agent through different hair, eye color, the possible use of fake noses and such. An hour later, the computer came up with a match. "Hmm. Zarana?" Running a check, Nene found out Zarana was not only Zartan's sister, but also a Dreadnok.
"After running a check on Agent Roberts, Breaker and I discover that the real Agent Roberts was murdered 2 weeks prior to the kidnapping." Nene reported to General Hawk and Lt. Stingray. "Also the SUV used, had government tags and markings. The NSA reported it stolen a week ago."
"If the Dreadnoks were in this, Cobra won't be too far behind." Sylia pointed out.
"Thank you Cypher, dismissed." Hawk told Nene. "It's a fine piece of reasoning, but we're still dealing in supposition; Dr. Hunter could have been kidnapped for another 3rd party."
"It's possible," Sylia agreed but her instincts were telling her Cobra behind this.
"Unfortunately, the bad news. Word on the hill is the Senate Armed Services Committee and some of those 'bleeding heart' liberals are trying to restrict our movements and no actions approved unless with congressional approval. Meaning if we did have proof of Cobra having Dr. Hunter, by the time we get permission, she would be dead."
"What?!" Sylia gasped, the GI Joe team will be tangled up in red tape. "Clayton, if I understand correctly, the GI Joe team reports to the Joint Chiefs, the Secretary of Defense and the President. Only they can authorize GI Joe to mobilize. If we have to have congressional approval, Cobra will have a big victory; because our hands will be tied. I for one will not be used as a pawn for someone political agenda."
Standing up, Hawk walked around his desk, face to face with Sylia. "Sylia, I know how you feel. We're both soldiers, I never had any patience for politics."
Peering through an electron microscope, for the past 2 weeks Dr. Hunter examined several genetic samples from Vipers and Crimson Guards identifying several 'soldiers' genes.
She used her knowledge of gene therapy to make the traits, Mindbender specified the dominant traits.
Once the DNA was created, Dr. Mindbender required to Caroline the need for him to remove one of her eggs from her ovaries. With the egg in a petri dish, Mindbender injected it with the DNA.
Next the cells began to divide, beginning the first stages of life. Soon the mass of cells were gently placed into a man sized container of a special amino acid solution. Feeding electricity through some electros into the solution, the growth and development of the being was accelerated to adulthood. Mindbender then implanted cables into the being's brain, feeding it everything it needs to know about military knowledge and other relevant information.
"All is ready," Mindbender stated assembling the Command staff.
"Lifting himself from the vat, the being leaped to the floor. "Excuse me, I would like some clothes, it's a bit drafty."
"Of course, you must be properly attired." Mindbender said showing his creation a set of clothes.
"Baroness! For God's sakes!" The Commander scolded noticing his Intell Officer looking at the being's naked form with a lustful gaze. "It's bad enough you and Destro go at it like two dogs in heat…. Caroline?!"
"Okay, so I'm a woman, sue me," shrugged the Commander's aide
Why me? The Commander mentally sighed his eyes pointing skyward to some higher being, obviously punishing the Commander for his lifetime of evil deeds.
Now dressed in a snake motif bodysuit and a head covering shaped as a snake's head. "My loyal commanders of Cobra, the enemy may have you demoralized but not defeated, because our cause is a sacred one. Victory will soon be in our grasp! For I am Serpentor!" Serpentor thrust his fist into the air. "SIEG COBRA!"
The entire command staff chanted 'Sieg Cobra,' with the exception of Cobra Commander who folded his arms across his chest. I'm not believing this crap!
Chapter III: Cry havoc and let's slip the dogs of war!
"I take it you were not impressed with Serpentor?" Caroline asked as she poured a snifter of cognac for Cobra Commander.
"Giving speeches without actions to back it up, is like asking a Frenchman to defend his country." Replied the Commander as he removed his helmet and faceplate, then loosened his collar. A Frenchman defending his country? The French Army's main weapon is a white flag! The Commander mentally laughed, to him and most of the world, the French were more of a pain in the ass than a superpower.
Turning around from the bar, Caroline saw the Commander's face for the first time. "Cynthia was right, you do have beautiful blue eyes." She said handing her superior his drink. She has heard stories that Cobra Commander's face was greatly disfigured but instead he was quite handsome. Cobra Commander propped his feet on an ottoman as he sipped his drink, while Caroline got behind his chair gently massaging his shoulder.
"That feels nice, almost how Cynthia did it." The Commander felt relaxed. It still haunted him, seeing Ginias Sahalin with a gun in his hand and Cynthia's body tied to a chair, slumped over. All because she was doing her job and exposed Sahalin's treachery. The Commander also had a price on Aina Sahalin's head, not for carrying out her duty as the test pilot but for defecting.
"I know, Cynthia taught me," Caroline whispered in his ear. Cynthia was just more than an aide, she was the Commander's confidant. The Commander could only surmised that if Cynthia knew something was going to happen to her; she would hand down to someone she trusted on how to take care of the Commander. "I not here to replace her, but I'm here if you need me."
The next day, Serpentor had a full day planned for inspections, drills, mock combat simulations and a briefing from Scrap Iron on the hardsuits which he asked questions pertaining to several types of assaults with the hardsuits.
"Caroline, I'm pleased with the drills and mock combat, keeps the men from becoming stagnant."
"To me, we maybe preparing for a big operation. Which reminds me, Serpentor has convened a senior staff meeting."
Sitting down in a chair in the briefing room, Cobra Commander wondered why Serpentor convened a senior staff meeting. "Okay Serpentor, we're all here."
"Very well, Commander," Turning on a wall mounted monitor displaying the United States. "Operation: Fenrir's Fangs. A multi point assault on the United States, targeting key military sites, building up to the occupation of Washington DC."
Everyone there looked at Serpentor with disbelief. "Perhaps you should have planned this while you were sober." Quipped the Commander
"I was sober."
"Then you should have planned it while drunk then. My god!" The Commander bolted from his chair. "Your plan is highly risky not only GI Joe but the entire US Military will be mobilized. I have a better idea, lets invade France, those bastards will surrender if we peppered them with spitballs!"
"Commander, I've done careful planning, a large amount of our forces including hardsuits and Gaws will be committed to this battle." Serpentor stated. The Commander sat back down, still doubting that success in this sortie. Serpentor continued explaining his plan which will require massive radar and communications jamming.
At the airfield, Cobra troops, along with Zakus, Goufs, Doms, Z'goks, Hy-Goggs and Acguys; followed by armored vehicles of all sorts were being loaded onto the Gaw Attack Carriers. At the docks entire armada of Moray Hydrofoils and troop transports were amassed; loaded with Eels, Vipers and Hardsuits.
"Serpentor, all transports are ready." Major Bludd reported.
"Excellent Major. Inform task forces Gamma, Delta and Eta to launch. Our plans require that we attack at dawn, Eastern Standard Time."
0245 hours PST, the Gaws that made up Gamma, Delta, and Eta groups approached the San Diego Navel Base home to Pacific Fleet Command. Most of the fleet was moored but the carriers, several destroyers and frigates were out on maneuvers.
"Prepare for carpet bombing. Launch Rattlers, Night Ravens and Dopps." Ordered the task force's commander, as zero hour was seconds away. "Now!"
Several bay doors opened on the underside of the Gaws, dropping their deadly payloads on the moored ships; from the hangers in the Gaw's wings, Rattlers, Night Ravens and Dopps launched, armed with missiles and heavy bombs.
Much like the soldiers and sailors that defended Pearl Harbor 60 years ago, the sailors fought off the Cobra air attack even though their ships were nothing more than infernos. Targeting the fuel depot, two Rattlers dropped a pair of heavy bombs. The whole base rocked violently, flames spewed in all directions.
Not even getting a chance to fight, F-14 and F-18 fighters along with their pilots were strafed by Cobra Dopp fighters.
Taking in the sheer destruction of the base, Admiral Kennely, Commander of the Pacific Fleet offered Cobra his surrender but would not reveal the location of the carrier groups.
But for other military units such as the 82nd and 101st Airborne, 1st Cavalry, and the 75th Ranger Regiment instead abandoned their bases, took everything of value and went into hiding. The hardest part was for some to leave wives and family behind in shelters.
"We have to get the Secretary out of here!" exclaimed a Marine general as aides and military personnel hastily packed up any important documents. The Secretary of Defense along with the Chiefs of Army, Navy, Air Force Operations, and the Commandant of the Marine Corp were rushed through the corridors by Military Police to awaiting choppers.
On the other side, Zakus and Vipers blasted their way through any armed resistance that got in their way.
With a slam, the Secretary ran into Mackie Stingray, knocking each over. "Who are you, son?"
"Mackie Stingray, sir, DARPA, head of Hardsuit development."
"Do you have the data?"
"In my briefcase sir, I fried my computer. So I have the only data of the YHS and RX series hardsuits."
"Good, get to the chopper."
Boarding a military chopper, the Secretary of Defense, Mackie and other critical personnel fled the Pentagon.
Just like the Pentagon, chaos reigned down on the White House. Cobra forces have been deployed on the city from landing crafts and dropped from Gaws Attack Carriers. Washington was being evacuated but the civilian casualties were also mounting. Escorted by heavily armed Secret Service Agents, the President, Vice President, First Lady and the Joint Chiefs boarded Marine 1. Zakus and Doms stormed grounds but were unable to shoot Marine 1. The President watched parts of Washington engulfed in flames, something like this hasn't happen since the War of 1812.
But the sounds of battle followed Marine 1 to Andrews Air Force Base. Air Force 1 was quickly boarded while Halo Squadron readied their F-18 Super Hornets for take off.
The President's plane and it's escorts sped down the runway followed by several Doms firing their machine guns, only to destroy two of the F-18s before they could take off.
The President held his crying wife; unable to believe the worst terrorist attack in US history has happened. He had to blame those few members of Congress for tying the hands of GI Joe for their own political agenda. May God help us all.
Stunned silence was the collective response of the GI Joe team assembled in the main auditorium watching footage of Cobra's attack on the US. It was horrifying to watch; seeing a US Army soldier unarmed and wounded, gutted by a Z'gok; or watching a mother holding her child heartlessly shot by a Viper. Emotions of the Joes ran from utter shock to barely contained anger.
For Aina, this was harder. Unlike her brother who joined Cobra out of mad ambitions, she joined under a misguided sense of purpose; she knew in her heart, this would have appalled Norris. Even Wild Weasel had a sense of decency.
Hawk maintained his stone faced expression; he was both angry and sadden by the turn of events. But he couldn't give into his emotions, the men and women under his command looked to him for strength and confidence. "We're now on Threatcon: Delta."
Dismissing the troops, Hawk headed back to his office. "Clayton? Are you okay?" Sylia asked her voice filled with concern when she saw Hawk bracing himself against the wall with his arm.
"I tried to call my younger sister in Los Angeles. She has a 4-year-old daughter and she just given birth to a son, I haven't seen. I haven't had a chance to congratulate her." Hawk told Sylia, he kept his emotions in check but he himself was on the verge of tears.
Sylia knew the stress of what was happening was taking a toll on Hawk and everyone. She began to wrap her arms around her CO but Hawk stopped her. "It's okay Sylia. I appreciate the gesture."
Sylia smiled as she took her CO's hand into hers. "Clayton, you've been there for me when I really needed a friend. You helped me through some of my most difficult moments. You gave me strength to pursue my training as a Ranger after my Uncle died, when I was about to give up. Some the most important lessons, I've learned from you. You've been my teacher, my mentor and one of my closest, dearest friends. I just wanted to return the favor."
Hawk placed his other hand on top of Sylia's. He could not get over how soft her hands were. "Sylia, I've always known how you felt about me. I'd rather have the 'father-daughter' relationship we share instead of intimate one; to me I've found it enjoyable and meaningful. It allows me to experience what it feels like to be a father, something I've deny myself for obvious reasons. I… I…. I love you Sylia."
Sylia was deeply touched; they both knew how they felt about each other but were never willing to admit their feelings. Sylia tightly embraced Hawk and he returned the affection. "I love you too Clayton. I knew my Uncle chose his friends wisely." Neither of them wanted to let go, but they had their jobs to do.
"General, we just got a general distress call from Air Force 1. Cobra Fighters are attacking." Dial Tone reported when Hawk and Grey Fox entered C&C.
"Fox, grab Ghost Rider and assemble Eagle Squadron. Protect Air Force 1 at all cost!"
Approaching her X-30 Conquest, Grey Fox fully decked out in a flight suit made a visual inspection of her craft and it's weapons payload. Her fighter was armed with AIM-120 AMRAAM (Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile), AIM-7 Sparrow, AIM-9 Sidewinder and AIM-54 Phoenix missiles. Emerging from the under the wing towards the cockpit, she turned to see her Knight Sabers. "Came to see me off?"
"Also we wanted to say good luck, Sylia." Linna replied
"To all of us." Sylia responded
On Priss' cue the three Knight Sabers snapped to attention and saluted their Commanding Officer. Sylia had to laugh as she returned their salutes, because Priss would never salute anyone unless it was a vulgar gesture. "You juvenile delinquents better behave yourselves." Sylia told her friends as she pulled on her flight helmet
"We hear ya' Boss!" Priss replied as Sylia began to climb into the cockpit of her Conquest.
With the flip of a few switches, Grey Fox slowly fired up the afterburners to begin taxing her fighter onto the runway with Eagle Squadron following suit.
"Control, this is Eagle Squadron requesting permission to take off."
"Permission granted Eagle Squadron, you're cleared for take off."
The Knight Sabers watched their CO took off with Eagle Squadron to provide support for Air Force 1 and its escorts Halo flight. "Come on, we got work to do," Priss quietly said to Nene and Linna.
From his office, General Hawk watched Grey Fox take off. Good luck and God's speed, Sylia. Hawk said mentally, the base was abuzz with activity; Hawk gave the order to prepare for an evacuation. Within hours, Cobra struck multiple military bases and the major cities, the US military now in a shambles, and now Cobra has mobilize a force consisting of Zakus, Goufs, Doms, HISS Tanks, Stuns, Magella Attack Tanks and any other forces they could mobilize against GI Joe. Hawk also had a personal concern of his own, his sister, a 4 year old niece and a newborn nephew he hasn't seen, lived in Los Angeles.
Over Pennsylvania nine F-18 Super Hornets were engaged in a desperate fight with Rattlers and Dopps. "This is Halo flight to any military units we're under attack and request assistance!" Halo Leader yelled into his radio as he watched a wingman bursting into flames from a Dopp's missiles. "What type of fucking fighters are those!"
"Halo Leader, this is Eagle leader. My squadron has just been scrambled, our ETA is 20 minutes. Just hold out and protect Air Force 1." Grey Fox calmly responded over the radio.
"Cypher, you and Mainframe say you developed a virus?"
"Yes sir," Cypher punched up a computer model on her laptop, "The virus once in implanted into our own computer network will have a one minute countdown then it will fry the network, in actuality it's a self destruct program requiring three authorization codes to activate it. I intend to have all critical information back up to a portable server."
"Then you've got work to do, Cypher."
"Eagle 1, I've visual contact, bandits dead ahead."
"Acknowledged. All right Eagles heat 'em up." Grey Fox responded while placing her air mask over her mouth and nose. Pushing the throttle, her Conquest increased speed closing the distance for a missile lock. "I'm in range. Eagle 1, Fox 2!" Fox launched a sidewinder at a Dopp.
Grey Fox's target burst into a fireball as the sidewinder struck the fighter on it's six. Several Dopps and Rattlers broke off to engage Eagle Squadron with Vulcan guns blazing. "All fighters evasive maneuvers! All fighters, evasive maneuvers! Prepare to engage!" ordered Grey Fox, locking a missile on a Rattler, Cobra was getting too close comfort. The missile traveled a short distance to its target.
"Nice shooting Fox! Alright asshole, I got you in my sights!" Eagle Three exclaimed while launching an AMRAAM. "Ain't payback a bitch!"
"Ghost Rider, stick with me."
"Roger Eagle 1." Ghost Rider responded taking a position a 5 o'clock of Fox's Conquest. Aina found this somewhat unsettling, because she could be shooting down a former friend or colleague but she had a job to do and her personal feelings were irrelevant.
"General, that Cobra Assault force is on its way ETA 4 hours."
"Thank you Dial Tone." Hawk answered hanging up the phone then faced Beachhead and Duke.
"What's our gameplan, sir?" Beachhead asked
"Our gameplan Beachhead?" Hawk answered feigning ignorance, "We're evacuating. Inform all flight crews I want the Medeas prepped and ready, any wounded and the prototypes have first priority. Duke, you and Beachhead organize a defense line keep Cobra away from the evacuation."
On the perimeter of GI Joe headquarters, Cobra prepared for their assault, amassing a huge amount of firepower, more than 50 Zakus, Goufs and Doms were committed to this assault, backed up by Magella Attack Tanks, HISS Tanks and Stuns. "When this party starts, I'm not holding back!" Lt. Renchef said to himself with an almost sadistic smile on his face as he got his Gouf B3 custom ready for battle.
"Hey, Lt., let's give those Joes a taste of what they give to us. I'm gonna cram loads of ammo down their throats!" said MCPO Matt Austin from his HS-05B Zaku I armed with a 36mm giant bazooka.
With a pair of binoculars, Colonel M'Quve watched a Medea taxing out for loading, from the turret of his command vehicle. Hmm, an evacuation perhaps? He mused, reaching into his pocket, M'Quve pulled out an antique pocket watch.
Raising their bazookas, squads of Zaku I and IIs opened fire followed full barrages of rockets giving total fire support.
Alarms sounded off as Cobra hardsuits stormed the breach of the outer perimeter wall while assault vehicles came through the main gate.
In the infirmary, Doc finished prepping a patient for travel. "Okay, he's prepped, let's move him out!" Doc ordered. Corpsmen carried or wheeled out patients out on gurneys and stretchers to the airfield to be loaded on the Medeas
Wounded loaded, the Medea with two Skystrikers as escorts took off.
Between Cobra and the Medeas at the airfield was the defense line the Joes set up. Despite the stubborn resistance, Cobra's onslaught was fierce. "Duke we can't hold! We must fall back!" Stalker yelled over the gunfire and explosions.
Knocking down a Gouf with the M203 attached to his M-16A2, Duke had to agree, he didn't like run from a fight, but there was no point to stay in a position that was going to be overran. "Everyone fall back to secondary positions!"
"Get out of here you dumb squid, forget about me, if I die, I'll die fighting!" moaned Leatherneck while Wetsuit tightened the bandage, trying to slow the bleeding from a nasty wound on the Marine's shoulder.
"Remember, a SEAL never leaves a buddy behind. So shut up, you pain in the ass!" Wet suit shot back, carrying Leatherneck on his shoulder, his SEAL training especially hell week came in handy, because the Marine was certainly no lightweight.
Several shots from a Zaku's machine gun, striking Beachhead in the left shoulder, in the butt and the right leg. Wolf stopped to see Beachhead fall. I know he's a pain in the ass, better save his hide. Wolf thought, loading an HE (High Explosive) round into the M203 grenade launcher attached to her M-16A2. "Firestorm! Give me some cover!" She yelled, firing the HE round at the head of the oncoming Zaku. Firestorm covered Wolf with an M249 SAW rifle while Wolf picked up Beachhead placing him over her shoulder, all that time in the gym was going to pay off.
The defense team fell back to the airfield, where the last Medea was ready to be loaded. Vipers back up by Zakus, Goufs and Doms pressed on the attack
"Cypher, is it ready?" Hawk asked as he and Duke entered the command center
"Yes sir, the program's voice activated. Here are the commands."
"Computer, this is General Clayton Abernathy requesting security access."
The computer was responding to the voice commands. "Computer destruct sequence 1, code 1-1A."
"Computer, Sgt. Conrad Hauser, 2nd in command, destruct sequence 2, code 1-1A-2B."
Computer, this Specialist Nene Romanova, Computer Specialist, destruct sequence 3, code 1B-2B-3"
"Destruct sequence completed and engaged. Awaiting final code for 1 minute countdown." A computer generated voice stated.
"Code: 0-0-0-destruct-0" Hawk inputted the final command.
"Destruct sequence is activated."
"Okay, let's get out here!" Hawk ordered, Cypher hastily stuffed her laptop into a carrying case before running after Hawk and Duke.
Reaching the Medea, Duke and Cypher strapped themselves in, while Hawk entered the cockpit. "Wild Bill, take off when you're ready,"
"You got it!" Pushing on the throttle, the engines steadily increased, pushing the craft forward. Zakus ran after the Medea, but the craft was picking up too much speed for the Zakus to handle.
In front of the Medea, Doms sped towards it. Wild Bill pulled back on the yoke just before the transport could collide with the Doms.
At the base, three Zaku Is reached C&C, carefully covering each other as they entered the room. "Colonel, the command area appears to be deserted."
"Hmm. Secure the main computer." M'Quve ordered.
The Zaku squad leader approached the computer. "Sir, there's a voice coming from the computer."
"Let me hear it."
"9, 8, 7, 6, 5," M'Quve first thought it was strange for a countdown until it hit him. A self destruct, he screamed for his Zakus to get out of there but it was too late. "4, 3, 2, 1."
In instant, the main computer exploded sending the Zakus flying in all directions. The building rocked violently with the electrical system up in a domino effect. The Zaku squad leader still dazed, crawling out just to get the hell out of there. But there was a creaking which grew louder and longer each time. Looking around the squad leader noticed the other two Zakus were burning, his men were knocked out by the blast and burnt alive. The creaking sound came again; now it sounded like something was giving way.
Looking up, the ceiling was giving way. "Oh shit." The squad leader resigned to himself to his fate, crushed by tons of debris.
From a window of the Medea, Hawk sorrowfully watched the base being engulfed in flames. "My god. What have I done?"
"What you always do, turn death into a fighting chance to live." Duke replied. Hawk was not going to argue.
"It was quite ingenious for the Joes to rig their computer to explode." M'Quve reported. 24 hours after the assault on GI Joe headquarters, he issued his report to Serpentor and Cobra Commander.
"Colonel, were you able to ascertain where the Joes were heading?" Serpentor questioned.
"No sir. Isn't there anything here in the Pentagon that can be useful?"
"No. The information we need, requires the vital signs of the Secretary of Defense and the Joint Chiefs. Much like the 'Football' the codes have to be inputted on their own freewill. Not even the most powerful supercomputers can break these security measures " The Commander stated on the foolproof security measures at the highest echelons of the US Government.
Chapter IV: The PIT
En route to the PIT, the Medea carrying Hawk and last personnel from the base linked up with Eagle Squadron. After safely escorting Air Force 1 to a secured location, Eagle Squadron received coordinates to the PIT while being refueled and rearmed.
In the middle of the most inhospitable piece of real estate sat three Quonset huts. Behind the huts, the desert began to quake as the sand opened up like a maw in the middle of the wasteland.
Eagle Squadron touched down first taxing their fighters down a slight angled ramp into a large hanger bay followed by the Medea.
"General Hawk, I'm Major Storm, welcome to the PIT sir," The PIT Commander greeted the General as he disembarked.
"Thank you, Major. We have wounded on the other Medeas."
"Yes sir. They'll be taken care of."
Pulling off her helmet and gloves, leaving them in the cockpit. Sylia climbed down the ladder from the cockpit. She was glad to be out of the cockpit. She noticed her hair felt matted and stiff, a good indication she needed a shower, badly.
Hawk watched the three Knight Sabers surround their CO in a group hug, he could see they looked to Sylia as a mother figure. The Knight Sabers were not just a collection of talented soldiers, they considered their team as a family; very much like Hawk, Sylia was looked upon by Priss, Linna and Nene as a surrogate mother, best friend, teacher, mentor and 'father' confessor; but just like Hawk, Sylia could be very strict when administering discipline.
After dismissing her friends, Sylia approached Hawk. "Excellent work protecting Air Force 1, Lt."
"The credit should go to Halo Flight. They held on with fewer fighters." Sylia said, she saw Halo flight shot down but each of them fought to the last to protect the President. Sylia had never seen such bravery. "General may I ask about the Prototypes?"
"I had them stored with the other prototypes," Major Storm spoke up
"Other prototypes?" Hawk asked, arching an eyebrow.
Taking Hawk and Sylia down to the sublevels of the PIT, Major Storm led them to a large metal door. Submitting to a retinal scan, the large doors open revealing the four YHS hardsuits in recharging booths in the center of the room, along the walls stood 18 other hardsuits. "General, Lt. I give you the product of the RX Project: The RX-78-2 Gundam, the RX-79g Gundam variant, the RX-77-2 and 1a Guncannon and the RGM-79g GM. These suits come with the improved beam rifles and sabers."
"I've never heard of the RX Project."
"I'm not surprised" Storm said, "Only a handful of individuals knew of the project's existence. I've only found 3 weeks ago when the suits were delivered for testing."
A small beeping came from a com panel. "Yes."
"Major, you Hawk and Grey Fox better see this." Breaker's voice came over the comm.. Major Storm looked towards Hawk and Sylia wondering what was going on.
Minutes later, the three entered ops with Duke and Flint watching the monitors. "Cobra's broadcasting this worldwide." Duke mentioned as the command staff watched the monitor with Serpentor standing before a huge backdrop of the Cobra emblem before a large gathering of Vipers, Crimson Guards, Strato Vipers, Motor Vipers, Techno Vipers and others.
"My brave and loyal Cobra soldiers, I'm pleased to report that our strike has reduced the half of the US military to dust. This brilliant blow proves that Cobra's justice is served. With the massive damage incurred, any battle strength the US military has left is of no consequence; in other words what remains is little more than debris. It is with confidence that I declare it impossible for this weak host of enemies to force its way past our defense line here in Washington DC."
"There is no way for mankind to last forever except by living under the direct control, of we the chosen superior organization of Cobra. If this war drags on, it will pose a serious threat to all of mankind. We must teach the slow witted people of the United States and the World a lesson they will always remember! The time is now! This is hour for mankind to stand up for the future that awaits us!"
The chanting of 'Sieg Cobra' sent chills down the spines of the Joes. "'Chosen superior organization of Cobra,' my ass!" Hawk sarcastically remarked. Like Hitler, Serpentor was making Cobra sound like the master race
Pounding the numbers on her cell phone, Nene was getting frustrated, she tried to several times to call her parents, even though the location of the PIT was top secret, but cell phone calls were allowed, but they were monitored and the signal scrambled so no one could trace it. Glancing at the cell phone display, it either said 'unable to complete call,' or 'no response.' "GOD DAMN IT!" Screamed the redheaded NCO as she threw her cell phone across the main bay.
Everyone around her looked towards her with surprise and shock and Nene's outburst. Usually, Nene was viewed as a very sweet and endearing young woman, who never seems to get angry or even swear. But with Cobra's assault, the evacuation, and the possibly her parents and her friends back in LA could be dead took a toll on her.
"Nene?" asked a voice, concern filled the female sounding voice.
Nene turned around, it was Scarlett; she had a look concern on her face, after witnessing the redhead's outburst. "Are you okay?"
"No, I'm not!" her voice broke into a sob, tears streamed down from her green eyes. "I'm not."
Walking over to some metal crates, Scarlett sat down, "Come here kiddo," she patted on a crate next to her and with a motherly tone. Nene sat down with Scarlett wrapping her arms around the NCO. Scarlett had a soft spot for Nene, she was a very sweet kid, but also she was young and inexperienced. "What's the matter?"
"I'm worried about my mom and dad, I don't know if they're alive or dead. Oh god!" Nene sobbed into Scarlett's shoulder.
"Shh. It's okay kiddo." Scarlett whispered as she stroked the back of Nene's head "I know how you feel, I have a father and 3 brothers in Atlanta." Nene's crying grew less and less, until she was dozing softly in Scarlett's arms. Poor kid, she must have cried herself to sleep. Scarlett mentally noted. "Hey, Linna. Where were you?" She greeted as Linna approached.
"Hi, Shanna, after helping out with triage, I went out for a walk. Needed some time to think."
Dipping her foot carefully into the warm water, Sylia slipped her body into the whirlpool and tuned the jets on full blast. She relished the soothing, massaging effects on her tired and sore body.
"Mind if I join you?" Sylia looked up too see Priss wearing a towel around her waist and a thin layer of sweat covering her body.
"Hitting the gym recently?" Sylia asked as Priss dropped her towel then slid herself into the pool.
"Yeah, I tend to blow off a lot of steam." Priss retorted. Sylia glanced to see Priss' body was tone and rather muscular yet her body was still very feminine, she even noticed the tattoo Priss had of the 101st Airborne emblem on her upper right arm. "I remember back in LA, that when I request a sparring partner, they would get hazard pay."
"God damn, I can't remember a worse attack than Pearl Harbor."
"Actually there was an attack on US soil prior to this."
"During the War of 1812. British soldiers burned Washington DC to the ground."
"Ah, okay makes sense."
"Apparently, this attack was also meant to be a psychological attack on the American people. But the Japanese thought the same when Pearl Harbor was attacked. But Admiral Yamamoto pointed out the contrary."
"He said, 'I fear all we did was awaken a sleeping giant and filled it with a terrible resolve,' he knew that America would fight back when attacked. In a way Cobra has us with our backs to the wall, but we're going fight back."
In their temporary quarters, Linna sat by Nene's bedside as the younger Knight Saber tossed and turned.
Suddenly, Nene bolted forward. Her scream jolted Linna out of her light sleep to find Nene resting her head against her knees, weeping.
Linna moved onto Nene's bed, taking the redhead into her arms. "I had an awful dream. I was chased by Vipers. You were dead, along with Sylia, Priss, Scarlett, Hawk all dead. Blood everywhere. Cobra Commander laughing." Nene sobbed.
"Shh. It was just a bad dream. I'm still here. I won't leave you." Linna said soothingly as she stroked the back of Nene's head, she was reassuring her, yet Linna knew in her line of work, death could be around the corner. But right now Nene needed her and she always looked to Linna as the older sister she never had.
Once Nene drifted back to sleep, Linna gently lower her back into bed then covered her with a blanket.
Sliding under the covers, Priss glanced over to her lover who was already asleep, but not being successful, she looked like she was having a nightmare or something. Once in bed, Cover Girl drew closer to the Knight Saber, wrapping her arms around Priss. Priss responded with the same, she heard her lover quietly sobbing, still in her nightmare; she gave Cover Girl a series of kisses; forehead, cheek and lips. This calmed Cover Girl back into a more peaceful sleep. Priss continued by stroking Cover Girl's head and back. "Go back to sleep, lover." She whispered before drifting to sleep herself.
For next several days, Hawk and Sylia spent hours on end in conference with the President, Secretary of Defense and the Joint Chiefs; also the PIT was used as a rally point for any combat ready units which included 1st and 2nd Army, the 101st and 82nd Airborne, 2nd Armored Cavalry, 75th Ranger Regiment, 7th-9th Special Forces, several SEAL and Delta Force units and several Marine units.
Hawk's plan was to air drop the Knight Sabers, the Gundams and Guncannons behind Cobra lines, while positioning the combined Special Operation units to retake the Pentagon. The main assault force will retake Andrew Air Force Base, then link up with 1st and 2nd Army who'll hit Cobra's eastern defense line. The combined assault team will attack Cobra's northern defense line either forcing Cobra to surrender or retreat.
Chapter V: Fortune Favors the Bold
In the main staging area of the Pit, General Hawk addressed the assembled GI Joe team. "Joes, we're moving out! Knight Sabers, suit up! Get the Medeas, Skystrikers and Conquests prepped for flight!"
"YO JOE!" Shouted the Joe team.
As the Knight Sabers suited up in their Hardsuits; Duke suited in the RX-78-2 Gundam Hardsuit he was assigned to, arming it with the standard beam rifle and sabers. Flint, Scarlett and Lady J suited up in the RX-79g Ground Gundams. Covergirl and Firestorm were assigned to the RX-77 and RX-77-1A Guncannons. Also 12 Greenshirts were assigned to the RGM-79g GMs.
Once fully loaded troops and vehicles, the Medeas and C-130s were able to take off, along with their Skystriker and Conquest escorts. Major Storm commander of the Pit, wished Hawk and his people good luck and good hunting.
Looming in the distance 5 Gaw Attack Carriers with Rattler, Dopp and Night Raven escorts were on an intercept course. "Ghost Rider to all fighters, we've got company, prepare to engage!"
"Hawk to all fighters, engage the Gaws and their escorts, try to buy some time for the Medeas and C-130s to head for Washington."
"Roger that," Ghost Rider replied as she veered her Conquest followed by the rest of the Joes' fighter escorts.
The distance grew shorter as the two forces approached. "I'm in range! Eagle 1, fox 3!" Ghost Rider launched an AMRAAM missile at one of the Gaws.
The AMRAAM struck the bow of the Gaw. The fighters broke off into groups of five. One by one, each Skystriker and Conquest fired their missiles. Dozens of missiles sped their way to the Gaws.
Breaking formation and their attack on the Gaws, the Skystrikers and Conquests went after the Gaws' Ratter, Night Raven and Dopp escorts.
Even with the massive damage inflicted on the GI Joe team and the even more damage inflicted on the US military as a whole, the fighters led by Ghost Rider, Ace, and Slipstream fought with even more determination to defend the country they swore to protect.
In the lead Medea, Hawk privately held doubts about their success of liberating Washington and leading a counter-offensive. But win or lose the GI Joe team will not go down without a fight.
At the Pentagon, a Tele Viper burst into what used to be the offices for the Secretary of Defense, "Sir, we've received a message from one of our Gaws, GI Joe is on the move and heading for Washington."
"What?!" Cobra Commander exclaimed as he snatched the communiqué from the Tele Viper.
"Very well, let them come. Inform all units to strengthen our defense line in the western and northern zones. Also place all Zaku, Dom, Gouf, Z'gok and Hygogg units on full alert.," Serpentor told the Tele Viper.
As the Medea flight group headed for Andrews AFB, one broke for Washington DC. Inside technicians finished attaching the Full Vernier FAST packs to Grey Fox's hardsuit while a second group attached the FSW (Full Strike Weapon) modules to Wolf's hardsuit which gave her thicker armor and missile pods. The Wolf is ready to go hunting and Cobra is the prey. Start praying you bastards, this will be the last hour your lives. Wolf smiled as she mentally prepped herself for battle.
If these men do not die well, it will be a black matter for the king who led them to it. Grey Fox silently quoted Henry V. They were not just fighting to for their lives, but the fate of the United States rested with the GI Joe team. As precaution, Grey Fox did a final weapons check, her beam rifle was charged, she had several e-caps in back of her of shield for her beam rifle and the 9mm Vulcan guns in the FAST packs on her arms were functioning.
Sitting next to Dagger, Cypher was taking in slow deep breaths, she wanted to calm down but she was too nervous, too scared. Still she had a little more confidence in herself, she did survive on her own on Cobra Island, there were times she wished she had the same kind of determination as Grey Fox, Dagger or Wolf. After wrapping her red hair into a bun, she pulled her helmet on, resigning to the fact she had a job to do. Not only was she worried about herself, but she didn't know if her parents were okay. The phones lines were down and Cobra may have struck civilian targets. However she can't let herself go to pieces or she'll end up getting killed.
"Hey, are you okay?" a voice asked, giving Cypher a reassuring squeeze on her shoulder.
"I'm fine Linna, but I'm worried about my mom and dad." Cypher replied, lifting her visor.
Getting a good look at her, Dagger noticed that Cypher was trying hard not to go all to pieces. "Its okay Nene, what you're going through is natural. But, in combat, push whatever doubts and worries out of your mind and focus on the mission."
"I'll try Linna. I'm worried about you as well,"
"In combat, you're a completely different person, very cold and uncaring. It scares me."
Dagger knew where Cypher was coming from, it scared her too that she had a dark side. A side that had no moral qualms about killing, except where it conflicted with her feelings on guns. A side, she felt was not human. It was part of her she hated but it was a necessary evil. It was something that was engrained into her since her parents' murder, her intensive martial arts training and her time doing Black Ops. "It also scares me, Nene, that a side of me like this exists. After this mission, we'll talk more." Dagger said as she saw Grey Fox was ready to get this mission underway.
"Okay people, we're nearing the drop zone. Our job is to keep Cobra occupied and to do as much damage as possible to their forces, make the job easier for the main assault team. Also there may still be civilians in area so watch your fire. We'll also divide up into small fire teams, Duke you're with me."
"Got it, Fox," Duke replied as he pulled on his helmet. Now to see what this Gundam can do.
"Firestorm stick with Scarlett,"
"Flint you're with Lady J."
"Watch my back, lover," Lady J told Flint with a somewhat seductive grin. It was no secret that the two were an item.
"You know I always do, which is very nice I might add," Flint replied with a crooked smile.
Wrapping her arms behind his neck, Lady J drew Flint closer as she could since both were in their RX-79g Gundam suits minus the helmets. "You romantic fool, don't get yourself killed," Lady J said as she kissed Flint on the lips, before putting her helmet.
"Covergirl, you're with Wolf,"
"Time to give Cobra a lesson in Ass kicking 101, class is session and I'm the instructor, "Wolf smiling an evil smile under her helmet.
"Well, professor, I'll be your TA," Covergirl replied to Wolf.
"Dagger, look after Cypher."
With a silent nod, Dagger acknowledged Grey Fox as she slid her long sword into her scabbard and slung it from her waist. Despite that she had the beam sabers, she'll still rely on her long sword for dealing with regular Cobra troops.
Exiting from the cockpit one of the Medea's crew approached the Joe strike team. "Okay people we're at the drop zone and Cobra has rolled out the welcome wagon." Opening the cargo bay doors, the Knight Sabers and the Joe strike team got ready for deployment.
"Alright listen up people, I'm going to say this once, use your jump jets in bursts to slow your descent. The last thing I want to do is using a can opener to get you out of your hardsuit. Anyway good luck and good hunting," Grey Fox told her unit before jumping out and fired up her dual vernier thrust pack. One by one each hardsuited Joe jumped out of the Medea.
On the ground, Cobra Zakus, Gouf and Doms armed with machine guns, bazookas and Vulcan guns spotted the strike team descending and began to open fire. The night sky lit up with tracer fire.
Using the speed and maneuverability of the FAST packs to her advantage, Grey Fox used the breaking thrusters in the chest armor to avoid the oncoming fire. Speeding down onto the Cobra hardsuits, Fox opened fire with her beam rifle, taking down a Dom and two Goufs, just as the other three Knight Sabers, the Gundams and Guncannons landed.
"Sir, the Joes had deployed new model hardsuits," reported a Viper in a Zaku I to a Crimson Guard in a Dom.
"We better notify command ASAP."
At the Pentagon, a Tele Viper rushed into what used to be the office for the Secretary of Defense. "Serpentor, Cobra Commander, we received a priority report from one of our units."
"Very well," Serpentor replied
Turning on a wall monitor, the Tele Viper brought up the video feed from a Dom engaged with Knight Sabers and GI Joe. "What are those?" questioned Cobra Commander looking at what appeared to be a Gundam slicing a Zaku II with its beam saber.
"New model hardsuits, sir. That's all we know."
"I'm willing to assume that these new models have beam weapons."
"Beam weapons?" Serpentor asked with a puzzled looked on his face, he barely understood the hardsuit technology
"Experimental energy projection weapons that can pack a punch. We're currently researching to develop our own beam weapons."
"Now we must stop the Knight Sabers and GI Joe. Tele Viper, get me the Black Tri Stars." The Commander ordered
On the Pentagon grounds, scattered clusters of Cobra forces assembled into staging areas, Cobra hardsuits lined up side by side being prepped for combat. A Cobra Techno Viper, no more than 19 without his helmet stood in awe at the three Doms belonging to the Black Tri Stars. "That there's a fine piece o' machinery ain't it?" Someone said to the Techno Viper.
"You're the Black Tri Stars!" The Techno Viper said to the three Vipers near him. "You're Gaia, Ortega, and Mash."
"You know everythin' don't cha kid? Gaia shot back.
"Are we that famous?" Ortega quipped
"I don't think anyone in Cobra who hasn't heard the story of how you sank a British navel task force with just your Zakus."
The Tri Stars broke in laughter, hearing how their reputation preceded them. "We're regular movie stars. An' there ain't nobody who has heard o' us!" Ortega laughed
"That's right sir."
Mash approached the teenaged Techno Viper, he was the one who had a scar over his left eye. "How about them GI Joe hardsuits, you know about them?"
"Ha! Ha! Now that yer famous, yer gonna make everyone else do yer grunt work, Mash?"
"Yeah. That's th' idea."
"Very little sir. I heard they're suppose to be tough and are equipped with beam weapons."
"If ya listen to those groundpounders you'd think so, huh?" Mash said, looking to the other Tri Stars to back up his statement.
"Well, we'll be wiping th' ground with them Joes."
"My division will be moving out. It'll be an honor fighting alongside you three," replied the Techno Viper with enthusiasm.
Placing an arm around the Techno Viper, Gaia's voice turned to a stern seriousness. "Hey, kid there's something ya gotta learn."
"There ain't no honor or dishonor on a battlefield. There's only th' survivors and th' dead! Didja win? Didja lose? If yer luck runs out, yer dead. If yer luck holds, ya survive." Gaia was talking from experience, he has seen people try to be heroes, those who did ended up dead. The Techno Viper swallowed hard, with Gaia's words racing through his mind.
"Black Tri Stars report to Cobra Commander! Black Tri Stars report to Cobra Commander."
"Come on boys, looks we got ourselves a job," Gaia told his Tri Stars.
Closing in on Andrews AFB, the main assault force led by GI Joe prepared for battle. Inside the lead Medea, General Hawk watched as 12 RGM-79g GMs armed their beam rifles. Hawk's plan was to deploy the GMs first to clear a DZ for other ground forces, then secure the airfield allowing the Medeas and C-130s to land and offload heavier equipment. He looked to the Joes Rock 'n' Roll, Gung-ho, Grunt, Snake-Eyes, Breaker, Short Fuze and others. In one way or another he knew that they were scared, with the exception of Snake-Eyes, he been through the worse horrors any human could go through. But one thing that he can be certain is they were going to protect the United States or die trying. In his mind, Hawk hoped Sylia was okay. Rationally, Hawk knew Sylia was a trained soldier and more than capable of taking care of herself. Emotionally, he cared as deeply for her as a father would his daughter. Hawk could always tell that Sylia looked to him as a father figure even if they were talking superior to subordinate. Shaking his head, Hawk needed to focus on the mission, besides Sylia's got good people with her and strong survival instincts.
"General, its time." Grunt told him.
Taking in a deep breath, Hawk saw no point delaying it. "Send in the GMs."
With the bay doors opened each GM jumped out.
From the ground, Cobra troops opened fire on the descending GMs with small arms, HISS Tanks and ASP gunpods. The GMs returned fire with their beam rifles. ASPs and HISS Tanks burst in flames drivers and gunners bailing out, some engulfed in flames as they ran. "Mother!" screamed a Viper as a beam shot ripped through his chest and out his back. With it twin guns firing, a HISS tank lumbered towards a GM. His beam sabers drawn, the GM operator ran under the HISS' cockpit stabbing both the driver's controls and the engine. Pulling out the beam sabers, the HISS was engulfed into flames.
Unable to stand against the GMs and with more US military forces and ground vehicles being deployed, Cobra couldn't hold Andrews AFB.
"What!" exclaimed Cobra Commander
"GI Joe has retaken Andrews AFB. The forces we had there could not repel them. According to survivors, the Joes used a new model hardsuit with beam weapons.
Dismissing the Viper, he turned his attention to the Black Tri Stars. "The Joes have begun their counter attack. I need you three to destroy the Knight Sabers."
"You can leave t' us!" Gaia told the Commander.
"There ain't been nobody who can beat our Jet Stream Attack." Ortega added
"Keep your cockiness to a minimum. The Knight Sabers are the best GI Joe has. It would be unwise to underestimate them." The Commander shot back, the Black Tri Stars may be the best Cobra has, but the Knight Sabers were not pushovers.
"Give us a look at these Knight Sabers and their hardsuits. Gimme some data on these varmints!"
"Caroline hand the data to Sgt. Gaia."
"This optical disc contains all the information we have so far." Caroline told Gaia as she handed him the optical disc.
"Ortega, Mash, we're outta here." Gaia told the other two Tri Stars
After the Black Tri Stars left the office, Caroline stood in front of the Commander's desk. "You really think the Black Tri Stars can defeat the Knight Sabers?"
The aide's eye widened with shock hearing the Commander's replied. "Then why dispatch them?"
"Because they're the best we have. But against the Knight Sabers, I fear they might not be good enough considering the Joe hardsuits are more advanced than our Zakus, Goufs and Doms. Also the Joes have begun their counterattack with the support of several combat ready units, we may end up losing. Caroline there is one thing I need you to do."
"Inform the mechanics that I want my Zaku prepped and ready for combat at a moments notice."
Speeding through the streets a black streak came to a stop revealing the streak was a Dom carrying a 36mm giant bazooka. "This oughta be where the Joes are. But there ain't anything on sensors." Gaia said as he surveyed the terrain through his Dom's sensors. "Ortega, Mash do ya see anything?"
"Nothin' yet." The other two Tri Stars answered back
"Right. Let's go on a ways."
Igniting their jet engines, the Black Tri Star's Doms sped further down the street.
"Fox, I'm picking up 3 hi-speed signals approaching our position." Duke alerted Knight Saber Leader.
Punching up her sensor readings on the HUD, Fox confirmed Duke's findings. But the sensors on the YHS-01 and the RX-78 Gundam were not as advanced as the sensors on the YHS-04. The YHS-01 and Gundam needed visual contact to ID the targets. "I see them."
Two shots rang out punching holes into the shields of the two Joes.
"There they are. The Knight Saber and the White Hardsuit." Gaia smiled
Duke fired several shots from his beam rifle, but the Tri Stars easily dodged, despite the close confines of the city streets. "Those Joe hardsuits ain't as great as they say." Gaia laughed firing his bazooka at Grey Fox.
Ortega and Mash fired their own salvos knocking Grey Fox in all directions. "Why don't I show you bastards how to treat a lady!" Duke exclaimed running towards one of the Tri Stars.
"Oh yeah? Chew on this, why don't ya!" Ortega mocked. From an apparatus on the Dom's lower left abdomen, a powerful strobe light flashed, blinding both Duke and his Gundam's visual sensors. Taking the advantage of this, Ortega punched Duke in the head then fired his bazooka.
With only seconds to react Duke raised his battered shield to block the projectile. The explosion destroyed the Gundam's shield and sent Duke crashing into a bombed out building.
"Ah'll take it from here Ortega!" Mash sent two to three bazooka shots into the building, sending it tumbling down on the Gundam.
"Duke!" Grey Fox screamed seeing the Gundam being buried in debris
Completely encircled by the speedy Tri Stars, Grey Fox readied her beam rifle, drawing a bead on one of the Doms. But with a swipe of the heat saber from one of the Tri Stars, sliced Grey Fox's beam rifle. Tossing away her useless beam rifle, Fox whipped out one of her beam sabers.
"This pilot's good. Ortega, Mash, we're gonna pull a Jet Stream Attack* on that there Knight Saber!" Gaia ordered
Speeding down the street, the Black Tri Stars turned around heading for Grey Fox in a single file line, Gaia pulled out his heat saber while Mash and Ortega got their bazookas ready. "Ready boys?"
"Yup! " Drawled the other two Tri Stars
Grey Fox stood her ground with her beam saber ready as the Black Tri Stars approached with their Jet Stream Attack
In striking distance, Gaia took a slash at Grey Fox, but with a quick weave backwards she dodged Gaia's attack. Fox returned with a counter strike, but Gaia leaped forward. Pushing forward Ortega fired his bazooka. As he fired, the Knight Saber ducked under Ortega's firing arc and cut his bazooka in half.
The Tri Stars sped past Grey Fox to regroup. "Okay, let's go with the Jet Stream Attack one more time boys!" Gaia ordered as the Tri Stars got into position.
Grey Fox stood her ground again. Carefully devising her tactics, she could defeat the Black Tri Stars. From what she could gather, their attack would be better suited against slower or stationary targets which had bigger blind spots and limited firing arcs, also the speed of the Dom would be perfect for hit and run tactics.
Approaching Grey Fox again, Gaia used his jet spray beam. Fox used her shield to protect her eyes and the visual sensors of her suit.
Gaia attacked with his heat saber, this time Grey Fox jumped into the air using Gaia as a stepping stone. "Hey! I ain't no god darn springboard!" Gaia complained. Mash jumped up in front of Fox firing his bazooka. She leaped off Gaia's back ducking Mash's shot and ran her beam saber through the chest armor of Mash's Dom and Mash too. Fox pulled the saber down from the point of entry and past Mash's crotch. Shortly after, Mash's Dom exploded.
"Mash?" Gaia uttered in shock seeing the violent destruction of his teammate. "That there Knight Saber, she destroyed Mash's Dom."
"Still can't figure how she got through our Jet Stream Attack. That was incredible."
"No more ammo. Let's hightail it back to base, work on our tactics."
As the two remaining Tri Stars retreated, Grey Fox collapsed to her knees, exhausted for her fight the Black Tri Stars. "Fox," a voice spoke from her com link.
"Duke?" she whispered. "Duke, are you okay?"
"I'm fine, this Gundam hardsuit was built to last."
Moving to Duke's position, Grey Fox prepared for the task to dig him out of the rubble. Right now Fox was running on the fading adrenalin from her fight with the Black Tri Stars; her sore muscles were screaming for some rest, but she ignored her fatigue as she continued to dig the Gundam out.
Gazing from Cobra Commander's office window, Serpentor watched several Zaku I squads moving out as the two surviving Black Tri Stars returned. "Hmm, appears the Black Tri Stars have returned," Serpentor mentioned to the Commander. Cobra Commander turned to the window. He noticed the two Tri Stars came back without weapons.
"I wonder if they succeeded in their mission?"
Minutes later, Gaia and Ortega, the elite Black Tri Stars looked beaten and defeated. "Commander, we weren't able t' destroy th' enemy."
"Yeah! That there bitch was able ta defeat our Jet Stream Attack!"
"Which Knight Saber?" Serpentor asked
"Th' one in th' YHS-01."
"Grey Fox. I'm not surprised," responded Cobra Commander, "A very calm and collected person. She probably carefully studied your Jet Stream Attack looking for possible openings to exploit."
After digging Duke out, the two found a secluded place inside a building not to give their position. Removing the dual vernier pack, Fox reached into a small compartment and pulled out a canteen of water, a pack of cigarettes and a lighter. Taking the canteen she splashed some water over her face washing away any sweat.
"Fox, you did okay against those Doms," Duke said as he removed his helmet
"They were good, I'll give them that," Fox replied puffing on her cigarette.
"You know Cigarettes will kill you, Sylia."
Fox pulled the cigarette from her mouth and turned to Duke. "Please, I hear the same from Lifeline, but he's more than holier than thou." Fox said with a smirk on her face, remembering once he tried to get Hawk to make the base smoke free.
Thinking back to that incident, Duke laughed because Hawk tried it for a week, but ended it when most of the personnel went to extreme lengths to smoke under Lifeline's nose, even Hawk since he would smoke an occasional cigar.
The two continued to sit in silence, collecting themselves until Hawk's voice crackled through Fox's helmet. Putting out her cigarette, Fox pulled her helmet on. "Go ahead Hawk."
"Fox, I'm sending you some coordinates for your team to rendezvous with the Support Truck." Hawk told the Knight Saber, also she and the others will receive further instructions and objectives while getting a chance for field repairs and rearming.
"Understood sir," Fox replied as she sent the same instructions to the rest of her team.
Back at the Pentagon, Tele Vipers buzzed back and forth through the war room with tactical updates, communiqués and reports. Serpentor, Cobra Commander and Destro surrounded a large table to display of a tactical map of Washington. "1st and 2nd Army has broken through our western defense line." Destro stated reading a report handed to him.
"Very well, any units there still capable of fighting are to head to the northern defense line. They'll need to be re-supplied."
"I will go on record that we're quickly losing ground, the Joes are on the offensive, we're on the defensive and now the US Navy is blockading our supply lines from Cobra Island."
"Your concerns are noted, Commander."
In an abandoned garage, the Knight Sabers, Gundams and Guncannons rendezvoused with Toll Booth and the Support Truck. Hawk had Toll Booth, the Joes' resident combat engineer and operator of the AVLB (Armored Vehicle Launch Bridge), follow 1st and 2nd Army at the western defense line to meet up with the Joe hardsuits. While Toll Booth conducted field repairs, Grey Fox sat at a computer terminal. "Alright listen up people, here are our new objectives; Hawk and the main assault team will attack Cobra's Northern lines while we attack them from the rear; effectively cutting their lines half.
"Cool, let's kick ass!" Wolf exclaimed
"Hold it, Wolf. You and Covergirl are going to provide backup for the Special Op Teams to retake Pentagon."
"Okay, Boss." Wolf replied before she and Covergirl took off in their repaired and rearmed hardsuits.
Arriving at the staging area set up the combined Special Op units on the opposite side of the Potomac, Wolf and Covergirl linked up with the Rangers. The Pentagon was lightly defended only one or two Zakus could be seen and a handful of Vipers. It appeared most of their forces have been diverted to the northern defense line. "Well, looks like we still have a little pest control." Remarked the Ranger commander. From various locations around the Pentagon, Ranger and SEAL snipers quietly got into position.
Also Wolf and Covergirl positioned themselves, readying their beam rifles. Zooming in on a Zaku through her HUD, Wolf pulled the trigger, destroying the Zaku. The other snipers and Covergirl opened fire, killing the Vipers in a deadly hail of gunfire and beam fire.
With the perimeter guards dead, Ranger, SEAL and Delta Force units stormed the grounds eliminating any further opposition. Reaching one the of the large set of doors, a unit of Marine Force Recon breached the doors while Wolf and Covergirl took point since they were better armed and armored. Since the Pentagon was an extremely large office building, there were very few guards. No one was taking any chances. Reaching the operations center, the opposition became fierce, inflicting significant casualties on the Special Op Teams, but the Vipers, Techno Vipers and Tele Vipers surrender upon seeing Wolf and Covergirl with beam rifles and the Guncannon's shoulder mounted cannons. These Vipers weren't stupid enough to screw with Wolf's YHS-02 or Covergirl's RX-77-1a Guncannon.
At attention in their Doms, Gaia and Ortega raised their bazookas in honor of Mash. "We're here to honor spirit of Mash may he rest in peace in eternal happiness. Salute!" Gaia and Ortega fired their weapons in a 21 gun salute,
From a command vehicle Destro watched with utter annoyance at the Tri Stars' wasting of ammo. "I'm aware you're personally recommended by Cobra Commander, but we're in the middle of an operation."
"Yeah, we know. We're going to get our revenge, irregardless of your orders."
"This isn't about revenge. You're to protect our rear defense. If you stick to our plan…"
"Ah know the plan fine," Gaia sharply cut off Destro, "Let's skedaddle Ortega!"
The Black Tri Stars sped off with Destro's command vehicle following.
Along the highway, the main assault force closed in on Cobra's defense line. The assault force consisted of M-1 Abrams, Maulers, Wolverines, VAMP Mk I and IIs, HAVOCs, RGM-79g GMs and an assortment of armored vehicles.
"Commander, the Joes are approaching our defense line."
"Tell all units to engage," Serpentor ordered
With narrow streets and multiple vantage points for sniping made the battle more intense. Squads of troops were mowed down like grain to a thresher as Cobra machine gunners fired from buildings on both sides. Once several VAMPs passed by two Goufs jumped from an alley with a vulcan cannon and a bazooka, sending the VAMPs crashing into an apartment building.
Two rounds fired from the cannons of a HAVOC sent a squad of Zakus flying like bowling pins. "Johnny Reb, you is avenged!" Cross Country exclaimed.
"That maniac is heading right for us!" Yelled a panicked Motor Viper to his equally scared colleagues as they bailed out of their STUN as the HAVOC slammed through several Cobra STUNs. "Yahoo! Let's knock 'em back Joes!"
Nearly dodging a bazooka round from Lady J's Hyper Bazooka, Gaia returned fire with 9mm machine gun.
"I'm on 'im J!" Firestorm fired her cannons from her Guncannon at Gaia. Even though she scored two direct hits, but the Dom's armor took the blow. Speeding towards Firestorm firing his 9mm machine gun laying multiple hits.
"Where's that varmint? Th' one who done in our boy Mash?" Gaia questioned as he sped down the street. Avenging Mash was the only thing on his mind; the Black Tri Stars protected their own, the honor of team and revenge for their fallen teammate was paramount.
Gaia and Ortega spotted their target near the Lincoln Memorial on the Capitol Mall. "There she is!"
"Th' one who nailed Mash!" Ortega added, putting a fresh magazine into his 9mm machine gun.
With machine guns blazing, Gaia and Ortega dashed towards Grey Fox. Their weapons fire just bounced off her shield and armor.
I need to get out in the open to move. Fox noted. Firing her thrust pack, Fox leaped into the air, unleashing a barrage from her M-4 on Gaia.
"Oh no ya' don't!" Ortega cried, pulling out his heat saber, he blasted into the air, positioning himself to stab the Knight Saber.
Blocking the Tri Star's attack, Fox used her beam saber. "Now its my turn," Fox coldly remarked as she literately sliced Ortega in two.
For Gaia, time almost seemed to stop as he watched Grey Fox's beam saber cutting down the center of Ortega's body, his Dom exploded in midair sending arms, legs and other debris that used to be Ortega. "ORTEGA! NO!" Gaia howled in rage. He couldn't believe one Knight Saber could defeat the Black Tri Stars. The honor of his team was riding on him, if Gaia had to take that Knight Saber to hell with him, he will.
With a roar of the Dom's jet engines, Gaia sped towards Fox. With her back turned, Gaia quickly threw a hammer punch into the Knight Saber's back. Lifting his dazed enemy by the throat, "Ah don't care how thick yer damn armor is, bitch! This one is for Mash!" He slammed his armored fist into her stomach. "And Ortega!" Another punch to the stomach, then threw her to the ground. "This is for me!" Gaia coldly stated pulling out his heat saber from behind his back. As he thrust his saber to stab Fox, she quickly rolled her injured body out of the way before she could be impaled and grabbed her beam saber.
The beam saber pierced the Dom's armor, penetrating Gaia's lungs then his spinal cord and out his back. "Mash. Ortega. I'm….I'm sorry boys." Gaia uttered his last words before his Dom exploded. The Black Tri Stars would never make it from the front lines.
Without a chance to rest Grey Fox headed off to link up with the main assault team. Images of her killing the Black Tri Stars ran through her mind. A small voice in the back of her head was punishing her for the way of taking out the Tri Stars. But the rational side of her told she was a soldier and the job of a soldier was to kill the enemy and come home alive. Sherman said it best, war is hell.
Grappling with a Zaku I, Duke was unable to reach for his weapons. Accessing his HUD, he searched his came across a something that could work. Head mounted mini Vulcan cannons?
The Vulcan cannons fired from the helmet of the Gundam, putting holes in to the Zaku.
Looking at a tactical display, Serpentor and Cobra Commander could see things were going badly. "Our lines are crumbling, the Joes are breaking through!" Snarled the Commander.
"Order all personnel to hold their positions until an escape route can be opened up. But begin removing the wounded off the lines," Serpentor relayed his instructions to a Tele Viper.
In exchange for his uniform, the Commander pulled on a softsuit before he got into his HS-06s Zaku II.
"General, how's everything going?" Fox asked
Hawk climbed down from the top of his HAVOC, "Cobra's lines are starting crumble, but they're trying to hold."
"They could be buying time. Knowing they can't hold for much longer, Cobra might try to open up an escape route." Fox surmised, out of the corner of her eye she saw something glitter, it was a projectile. "Hawk, get down!" Fox yelled as she threw the GI Joe commander to the ground using her hardsuited body as a shield.
The projectile struck the HAVOC destroying it. "Cypher! Can you tell who shooting?!" Fox ordered
Punching up her sensor readings, Cypher could track where that shot came from, "Got it, the shot came from a Zaku, and that same Zaku is heading right for you. What? This one is coming at you at 3x normal speed."
Before Grey Fox could say anything a blue Zaku appeared. "Cobra may have lost the battle, but you won't survive to see the end." A familiar raspy voice spoke.
"Cobra Commander," Fox sneered
"You've lost, Commander." Hawk pointed out.
"Perhaps, but I hope you wrote out your epitaph," with his 12mm machine gun, he fired a single shot into Hawk's stomach.
Hawk could feel the shot ripping through his stomach as he fell flat on his back. "Clayton….?" Fox whispered as her friend and CO fell. Several Joes rushed to Hawk's aid. Gung-ho pulled out a Carlyle bandage from a med kit to stop the bleeding from Hawk's wound.
Standing before the Commander, Grey Fox was perfectly calm yet she was pissed as hell. She couldn't give into blind anger, that would be playing into the Commander's hands.
The two hardsuited foes faced off, sizing each other up, trying to predict each other first move. This standoff seemed to last for an eternity.
Drawing her beam saber, Fox went on the attack. Dashing forward, Fox took several quick slashes, but the Commander dodged then jump back firing his machine gun. The fight between Grey Fox and Cobra Commander has begun.
A missile struck the side of a building sending rubble tumbling down on Wolf and Firestorm. Carefully, several Vipers approached the pile of rubble. Suddenly Wolf and Firestorm rose to their feet and the Vipers stopped dead in their tracks, a few feet away. Rising from the rubble, Wolf readied her Hyper Bazooka and Firestorm her shoulder mounted cannons. "Howdy boys!" Two said in unison firing their weapons. The shots whizzed by the Vipers, destroying their STUNs.
Cobra Commander fired his machine gun, but Grey Fox was a very evasive target. Jetting for the Commander, she broke his machine gun with her fist. Tossing away his worthless machine gun, the Commander fell back as two Zakus came to his aid. "Acous! Cozun! Stop her!"
"Roger," replied Acous
"Roger," replied Cozun.
Machine guns aimed, the two F series Zakus opened fire at Grey Fox. Igniting her flightpack she launched after the Commander, while unleashing the 9mm Vulcan guns in the FAST packs on her forearms at Acous and Cozun. Just small fries for Fox, she knew her real target, a blue Zaku.
"Eat this!" Howled Wolf as she sent a round from her Hyper Bazooka into a squad of BATs. The BATs flew in every direction, damaged beyond repair. "Yes! Okay who's next!"
The Joes pressed on their attack even harder. Vipers, Doms, Goufs and Zakus fled; HISS and Magella Attack tanks followed the retreating forces while laying down covering fire
"Don't let 'em get away! YO JOE!" Cried Clutch firing his M-16 with M203 grenade launcher attached.
Coming to a stop in front of the Supreme Court, Cobra Commander made his stand. He saw his determined opponent coming towards him, the Commander drew his heat sword.
kaze yo Kiss me kuchidzukete
sora yo Hold me dakishimete
sou itsudemo watashi-tachi wo mamotte
kabe wo Break down koeru made
yume wo Touch down tsukamu made
sou shiawase ni naru tame ni umareta kara
Fox drew her beam saber. The Commander's opening attack was quick, but blocked by Fox's saber. This left the Knight Saber open to an attack with an uppercut into her stomach.
Just as Scarlett took down a Dom, a Zaku jumped down onto her Gundam. "GET OFF MY BACK!" Scarlett yelled as she threw the Zaku off of her. Quickly she caught an Acguy sneaking up on Duke. Claws extended, before Scarlett could do anything, the Acguy punctured the Gundam's armor, stabbing Duke in the lower back. "DUKE!" She screamed as she watched one of her closest friends fall, blood seeping through breaches in the Gundam's armor. Turning her attention to the Acguy, she was filled with nothing but anger as pointed her beam rifle at the Cobra suit before her.
The trigger pulled, the beam shot right through the eye sensor of the Acguy, killing the pilot. "That was for Duke, you bastard!" Scarlett said, her voice as cold as ice.
With the clashing of saber and sword, Cobra Commander and Grey Fox fought on. Both suits were showing signs of damage. Dents and cracks from stress were showing. "I must commend you, Grey Fox. Never have I ever fought such a worthy opponent."
Cobra units in retreat, stopped to cheer on Cobra Commander, even Serpentor watched with a new respect that the Commander fought one on one with the Knight Saber. "Now time for you to die, Fox!" Raising his heat sword, his attack was to slice Fox's head in half, but Fox took the Commander's hand off with her beam saber.
The Commander screamed in absolute agony, as he saw blood gushing where his hand used to be.
Glancing at the fallen Commander, Serpentor ordered several Vipers to get his body back to Cobra Island, ASAP.
Physically and mentally exhausted, Grey Fox collapsed on the steps of the Supreme Court. Finally her fight was over, she could rest for now.
Splitting up in three different directions, Wolf, Covergirl and Firestorm searched their areas for any Cobra holdouts. Wolf carefully searched her area, until her neck was snared from behind by a Gouf's heat rod. Tightening the rod's grip, a surge of electricity ran through Wolf. Between jolts, the two Zakus would beat Wolf into submission. Unable to move, to think; Wolf couldn't stand not being able to fight back.
Suddenly, the Gouf and two Zakus were destroyed; the last she saw was Firestorm and Covergirl standing above her battered and broken body with smoke coming out the barrels from their shoulder mounted cannons as she lost consciousness.
Even though, Cobra forces were bugging out, some stay to fight, either to buy some their units time or just take out as many of the enemy as possible. In this case several Cobra hardsuits were the unfortunate victims to Dagger and her deadly expertise of the beam sabers. Except, out of nowhere a Z'gok slashed Dagger in the side of her stomach.
Time grinded to a crawl, right before Cypher's eyes, her best friend was violently attacked; blood sprayed from her wounds. Dagger crying in pain rang through Cypher's ears. "LINNA!" Cypher screamed, for the moment she didn't care if she used Dagger's given name, her friend was hurt.
"She's you're friend? Want to join her?" Mocked the Z'Gok pilot.
Normally, Cypher was a very sweet, innocent person, but everything that has happen, her parents and friends back in LA could be dead; she watched her best friend get seriously injured, pushed her to the edge.
Grabbing one of Dagger's beam sabers, Cypher charged for the Z'Gok. Attacking with his claws, Cypher ducked under then sliced off the Z'Gok's arm. With all her strength, she shoved the beam saber into the Z'Gok's chest.
"Fox, come in!" Cypher's voice quivered trying not to lose her head.
"Go ahead, Cypher," Fox replied, she was perfectly calm.
"Fox, Dagger's down, she needs medical attention."
"Cypher, how bad is it?"
"Pretty bad," Cypher couldn't stand the sight of the blood.
"Cypher, you'll have to do some field medicine. I'll work you through it."
Thought of looking at Dagger's wound made her hands shake. "I don't know if I can do this?"
"If you don't, Dagger's good as dead," Fox bluntly stated, "Nene, listen to me, just stay calm. You can do this, I'm going to help through this."
First, Cypher linked up with Dagger's suit, she entered a command which in an emergency, the suit could be blown apart if the operator was injured. Next Fox instructed Cypher to find anything to stop the bleeding. A few minutes late, she doused some sponges in rubbing alcohol, the placed the sponges on Dagger's wound, trying hard not to throw up. Then, taking some sheets, she wrapped them around Dagger's waist tightly to slow the bleeding. Keeping a vigil, Cypher lost track of time until she felt something on her shoulder, it was Grey Fox's hand.
"Come on, Nene I have some clean clothes for you in the Support Truck." Sylia quietly said as medical corpsmen carried Linna on a stretcher to a medical HUMVEE.
Cobra was now on the run, with the US military hot on their heels. Reaching Dulles Airport, Cobra was in the process of retreating back to Cobra Island. "Sir, most of the Gaws and escorts are ready to depart. Cobra Commander's condition took turn for the worse, I had to put him on one of our faster medical transports."
"Can we break the Navel blockade?"
"We have a good chance, if we run like hell!"
Serpentor frowned that despite his plan came close to succeeding, but now he has to turn tail and run. But a somewhat of a smile came to his face, when a Viper and a small unit of HISS Tanks, Zakus and Goufs volunteered to buy Serpentor and the other battlefield commanders some time to escape.
As the Gaws and their escorts took off, they came under attack by a combined force of Skystrikers, Conquests, F-14s, F-16s and F-18s.
Tomahawk cruise missiles struck a Gaw's wing, coming about the transport prepared for a Kamikaze run on one the carriers in the blockade. This bought more time for Serpentor and other retreating Cobra forces, since fighters and other ships concentrated fire on the suicide running Gaw. Despite the damage inflicted there was enough of the Gaw to ram the carrier sending it to the bottom of the Atlantic. The fleeing forces were able to escape the blockade.
Chapter VI: Critical Care
At the hospital Linna was immediately rushed into surgery despite Nene's efforts, Linna was bleeding internally. As she was carted into OR, Doc gave Sylia a possible outlook given Linna's injuries, but he will do everything he can.
Doc headed for pre-op, Sylia walked in a corridor, she had confidence in Doc's abilities as a surgeon, since he patched her up on more than one occasion. "Hey! Why is that noncom being treated before me?"
"Excuse me?" Sylia asked, she noticed an infantry colonel with just a flesh wound on his shoulder.
"I'm a colonel, I show be treated before some enlisted man."
Anger began racing through Sylia, this Colonel would have the gall to let Linna suffer, possibly die just so he could be treated first?
Again the colonel started to spout off his crap. Sylia, who was frustrated, worried, exhausted both physically and mentally; just lost her last shred of patience. She grabbed the colonel by the collar and slammed him against the wall, "look, that person has very extensive injuries and is at death's door. Not only is that woman one of my subordinates but my friend. You're not that seriously injured, you can wait for a doctor to treat you. Have I made myself clear, Colonel?" Sylia knew she was assaulting a superior officer, but for the moment she didn't care. Letting the Colonel go, she walked down the hall to a nurses station and asked for General Abernathy's room.
Flint and Lady J kept watch of Hawk who was still unconscious as Sylia walked in. Without a word spoken, Lady J could tell Sylia was a wreck. Quietly, Lady J asked Flint to look after Hawk, while she talked to Sylia in private.
"Sylia, tell me what's troubling you?" Lady J asked as she handed a cup of coffee to Sylia. Both Lady J and Scarlett knew Sylia was not the easiest person to open up, preferring to keep her feelings to herself.
"I watched the most important person to me get shot, two of my friends are injured; one who's life is hanging by a thread. Then there's Nene with Scarlett practically in pieces." Sylia said, a single tear ran down her cheek.
Lady J noticed that single tear became a sob then Sylia began to cry. She was somewhat surprised, since Sylia had a tight reign on her emotions. Right now she drew the Lt. closer allowing her a shoulder to cry on.
After Sylia was done crying, she stopped in the restroom to clean herself up. Walking down the corridor, she pulled out her cell phone.
Scarlett held Nene tight in her arms as the Knight Saber cried, it been hours since Linna's been in surgery. Sylia walked up to Scarlett and Nene. "Nene, phone call for you," she said as she handed Nene her cell phone.
Puzzled, Nene took the cell phone, who would call her on Sylia's cell. "Hello?" Nene said, her voice quivered a little.
"Hi Nene," A cheerful voice answered.
"Mom? Mom?!" exclaimed Nene, recognizing her mother's voice. A smile came to Nene's face, glancing at Sylia. "It's good to hear from you."
"Your CO, Lt. Stingray, called. She said you were worried about us. She seems like a very nice person."
"She is, Mom, Sylia's the best."
Nene continued talking to her Mom. Telling her about Linna, how Nene considered her to be more than her best friend, but the older sister she never had; and told her mother that she was afraid Linna was going to die.
Initially, Nene's mother was against Nene being called back into the military, but Nene told her parents about her friends and how they look out for each other; her mother was glad that Nene had such friends.
"I miss you and Dad, Mom."
"We miss you too, honey,"
"Kiss Dad for me,"
"I will. I'll let you go. I love you Nene."
"I love you too, Mom. Bye Mom." Nene said, turning off Sylia's cell phone. That was a load off her mind; her parents were safe. "Thank you Sylia."
Sylia took back her cell phone and smiled. "You're welcome."
Unexpectedly, Nene hugged Sylia. "You are the best, Sylia. I'm glad you and Linna are in my life." Nene said tears streaming down from her eyes.
"Nene, why are you crying?"
"Because, I'm happy. I love you Sylia, I don't know how my life would have turned without you."
"I love too, Nene. You, Priss and Linna are one of the best things to walk into my life." Sylia said. In the two years Nene's been in the unit, she watched the redheaded Knight Saber grow and matured in both experience and self confidence. But in some ways, she was the just same as the day Sylia met her.
Entering Priss' room, Sylia got a look at Priss' injuries. Looking at her medical charts, Sylia discovered her hot headed Sgt. had a busted left wrist, right collar bone and shoulder, several cracked ribs, also her jaw was broken and had to be wired shut. Her face was swollen and bruised with black eye over her right eye.
"I never seen anyone tougher than Priss, even getting her ass kicked by 2 Zakus and a Gouf, and still she survived." Covergirl mentioned, sitting at Priss' bedside, holding her hand. Both Sylvie and her stayed by their friend's bedside.
"When life keeps kicking you when you're down. You develop a very thick skin."
"I wish there was more I could have done for Priss," Sylvie sighed, "I owe Priss my life."
Sylia walked around the bed, then placed a hand on Sylvie's shoulder. "Sylvie, you can't blame yourself. Because the guilt will just eat you alive."
"You two should really get some rest."
"If it all the same Sylia, I'd rather stay with Priss, in case she wakes up." Cover Girl requested.
Sylia nodded and smiled. "Alright, I understand you want to stay with your lover."
Sylia quietly escorted Sylvie out, while Cover Girl took a seat at Priss' bedside. Taking her hand into her own, tears ran down her face. They were passionately in love with each other, and it wasn't just the lovemaking, which can be incredible. But Priss satisfied her emotionally, she cared for Priss and Priss cared for her. She knew Priss was going to pull through, but the emotional trauma will be a test for their relationship.
"Courtney?" Priss whispered through her wired shut jaws.
"Shh. Don't talk, my love, just rest." Cover Girl soothingly said, placing a comforting hand on Priss' cheek.
"Courtney, please stay with me, don't leave me alone." Priss pleaded, tears streaming down.
A smile crossed Cover Girl lips, leaning over she kissed her lover on the lips. "I won't leave you, I'll be here if you need me."
"Thank you," Priss whispered as the painkillers kicked in, drifting her back to sleep. As she promised Cover Girl remained by her bedside.
Since Sylia was only senior officer available, she ordered all uninjured personnel back to base, despite the destruction of the base's critical areas, the barracks were still standing. "Flint, I'll look after Hawk," Sylia told the warrant officer as she approached Hawk's bedside.
"Sylia?" Hawk groaned, he was coming around.
"Hello old friend," Sylia smiled
"Did we win?"
Sylia's expression took a somewhat sadden look, "Yes, but at a high price."
"Yes. But the Joe team had several casualties with Duke and Linna are two of the worse off."
Hearing what happen to Duke, Hawk knew Duke was one tough son of a bitch, but much like Sylia, Duke was a very close friend to Hawk. "How are you holding up, Sylia?"
"I'm managing Clayton, but I'm tired, frustrated and worried." Sylia explained. Also she told Hawk about the Infantry Colonel and the crap he was spouting off; how Scarlett and Nene were holding up, dealing with Duke and Linna's injuries.
In the med lab at Cobra Headquarters, Cobra Medi-Vipers, the best in the organization work tirelessly to attach a cybernetic replacement for the hand Cobra Commander lost.
Under drugs, Cobra Commander's mind drifted through various points of his life. As a child, he had two loving parents, who were killed by a drunk driver, who was let off due to a slip up by the arresting officer.
As a teenager, the Commander was highly intelligent with talents for business and several areas in the military. The Commander over time had become disillusioned about the world around him and increasingly mentally unbalanced that he believed he could run the world and thus Cobra was and Cobra Commander was born.
In his drug induced haze, the Commander's mind drifted to an actually pleasing memory. During a time in New York, he finished a business dinner with Xamot and Tomax. As he was leaving the restaurant, he had his wallet stolen containing his money, fake ID and credit cards under an assumed name, by the two teenage girls. After a prolonged chase, the Commander was about to shoot the two girls, but he took pity on them, they were only trying to survive and the Commander saw potential that could be harnessed. He took the girls known as Cynthia and Caroline in, trained them as Crimson Guards; and became his closest aides. This act of kindness for which Cobra Commander wasn't known for, felt nice.
As for Caroline and Cynthia who were in their early 20's when they became Crimson Guards; they were both 18 when the Commander found them. Neither of them regretted joining Cobra; since they don't have to worry about where their next meal came from and it beat living on the streets. For that the two were very loyal to the Commander
The fog lifted from his eyes. First thing he noticed that he was in a hospital bed; the second was Caroline, a very pleasing sight with her brown eyes and brown, wavy hair bouncing off her shoulders; her Crimson Guardsman uniform hugging every curve of her 5'8" body. "Welcome back to the land of the living, sir."
"Yes, sir. I'm here."
The Commander tried to get up but Caroline gently pushed him back down. "Easy there, you're still doped up on pain killers."
"What are you talking about?" The Commander questioned but he answered it by looking at his metallic right hand. "A small reminder from Grey Fox." He added testing the dexterity of his new hand.
Chapter VII: A War without End
Grey Fox returned to base at a quarter to 2 in the morning. She felt like her body's been through a meat grinder, also the worst headache that a bottle of extra strength aspirin wouldn't cure. As she walked to the barracks, Sylia noticed Aina sitting under a tree. "Aina?"
"Lt. I had trouble sleeping, so I've been gazing at the stars. I find it relaxing." Aina sighed while gazing at the night sky. "When I was testing the Apsalus, some of flights took place at night. It was the most beautiful thing I've ever seen."
"Is that why you became a pilot?"
"One reason, the other was I've always loved to fly. But that wasn't why I joined Cobra. I joined was so I could be with my brother. But I sold my soul in becoming a Strato Viper, because I was one of the best. If there is one thing I can remember fondly of Cobra, would be Norris and Wild Weasel. Norris took me under his wing, he was a kind and gentle man; a man of honor. Wild Weasel was and I still considered him a good friend, he organized a surprise party for my 21st birthday. I still cherish a book on combat fighters with a message he inscribed to me.
Sylia was somewhat surprised that members of Cobra were actually human which was an unfair assessment, since her encounters were all combat related. "It must be rough for you?"
"It is. Fortunately, I was wrong in my assumption that being an ex-Strato Viper, I would be looked upon with mistrust. But Ace asked me out next Friday."
"Aina, you're considered a grunt. From the perspective of the soldier, you were doing your job; If it was a higher ranking officer it would be different cause he could have been fed disinformation as a test of loyalty or used as a means of ambushing the enemy. You have nothing worry about."
Sylia only nodded. Now she really needed to get some sleep, her body was screaming to rest. Before she headed off for her quarters, Sylia stopped by to check on Nene.
She discovered Nene in her pajamas sleeping on the couch. Sylia smiled a bit Nene fell asleep watching a tape full of the Simpsons. Helping the redhead from the couch, Sylia guided Nene into her bedroom. Gently, Sylia tucked her in. Starting to walk away, Sylia remembered she forgotten something. Reaching under the bed, Sylia pulled out a small cardboard box, a makeshift bed for Nene's teddy bear. With the bear in hand, Sylia placed it under Nene's arm.
Almost naturally, a smile came to Nene's face as she snuggled up with the stuffed bear. Odd? A simple bear to bring her comfort. Sylia smiled as she leaned over and kissed Nene on the forehead.
"Thanks mom," Nene said sleepily. Sylia turned around, smiling as she shook her head. "Pleasant dreams, Nene."
Finally, Sylia made it to her quarters. On the coffee table sat her PS2 with several games such Metal Gear Solid, VR Missions, Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty; SOCOM: US Navy SEALs, Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon and Splinter Cell and Medal of Honor: Frontline. Sylia's opinion on video games changed since playing Metal Gear Solid, originally she considered video games to be a waste of time, but Sylia was surprised that some can have remarkable realism and extreme attention to detail such as SOCOM: US Navy SEALs and Medal of Honor: Frontline as well as a compelling storyline like Metal Gear Solid. Thanks to Mackie getting her interested, Sylia had a strict criteria on games: must have a very intriguing storyline; second, if game focuses on actual military units it must be highly accurate; that also applies to games based on historical events such as World War II.
Finally within the sanctity of her room, Sylia sighed in relief. Walking over to her dresser, she pulled out a pair of pajamas. Placing her sleep ware on the dresser, she turned to a Bose CD player on a stand next to her dresser. After popping a CD into the player, Sylia turned the volume low enough for her to hear. The player began playing some soft jazz music while Sylia changed into her pajamas, slid into bed, then slowly drifted to sleep.
Days later, Hawk, Duke and Priss were discharged from the hospital. For the latter, the staff threw a party with a large sheet cake and champagne. Priss could be a rather difficult patient, one incident which involved a very cheerful nurse, an injured Priss in a very foul mood and a bedpan. It was not a pretty sight.
Linna's condition was improving, Doctors were afraid she might not survive surgery. Even though she was on life support, she was strong enough to be transported back to the base.
"So far, things are starting to return to normal," Sylia stated while taking a bishop with her knight. Hawk was confined to his quarters; Doc wanted him to take it easy for a while. Fortunately, he had Sylia's company to enjoy.
"I know I've been keeping up with the reports." Hawk carefully examined the board, there was a possibly his king could be vulnerable. Taking a pawn, he took one of Sylia's rooks. "Right now we're licking our wounds. Cobra has dealt a serious blow."
"Clayton, I was wondering about giving out some leave time for some of team? For those who have been injured and those who really need to rest." Sylia asked, she kind of lost interest in their chess game. Sylia's request was aimed at Duke and the Knight Sabers.
"You have a valid point, Sylia." Hawk said until the phone started ringing.
"Yes?" Sylia answered. "I see." Reaching for the TV remote, she turned on the TV.
The image showed a large hall with large torches burning along the walls. Behind the stage was the emblem of Cobra filling the entire wall. Before the huge sea of Cobra personnel was Serpentor behind a podium with Destro, Cobra Commander and Baroness off to the side.
The assembly soon became very quiet as Serpentor spoke. "We have lost many true heroes to our glorious and noble cause. But are we defeated? No. For us, this is a new beginning. How is it we continue to fight when our strength is 1/50th of the United States? Because our fight is sacred, our cause divine. Our war is at a stalemate. But the fallen have opened your eyes to blinding truth of your complacently."
"Never forget how governments like the United States has trampled over you. We of Cobra had a long struggle to achieve freedom. Never forget the noble sacrifice of our fallen soldiers like the Black Tri Stars have made. Rise my soldiers rise! Take your sorrow and turn it anger! Cobra thirsts for strength of its people!"
It was a haunting feeling, listening all those Cobras chatting 'Sieg Cobra.'
"It almost like Cobra is trying to bring about their own Third Reich."
"Serpentor represent a danger we haven't seen since Adolph Hitler. A person like that must be stopped and not appeased."
"In this day and age it easier said than done, Clayton."
Returning to her office, Sylia gazed out her window, watching the setting sun. Serpentor's speech running through her mind. Hawk was right Serpentor cannot be appeased, he must be stopped. But on the other hand, she was right some people in power who didn't understand history will believe appeasement will ensure 'peace in our time,' Sylia had to laugh, when Chamberlain said those immortal and foolish words, Hitler invaded Poland, the Rhineland and the Sudatenland. Sylia was a believer in resolving conflicts without resorting to military force, but as a student of military history, Sylia knew that some conflicts could only be resolved by force. "'We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender.' Winston Churchill after the Battle of Britain," Sylia quoted. In a way Cobra was the same way, GI Joe will fight Cobra over land, sea and air, also in the cities. Anywhere Cobra was, GI Joe will be there. Their battle most likely will never end.
The battle was over but the war was far from over. Cobra will strike again, but GI Joe and the Knight Sabers will be there to stop them. Question is who will survive?
The End…For now
Original Fanfic Idea by Starscream.
This has been a Starscream production.
In association with the Zeonic Corporation, GENOM International, SCHAFT Industries, Extensive Enterprises and Decepticon Incorporated.
Top Kick: Meaning CO
G-2: Army Intelligence
The Jet Stream Attack (According to Mobile Suit Gundam): A maneuver used by the Black Tri-Stars, in which the team's three members line up and then attack at high speed, one following another in a lethal triple attack. While the Jet stream Attack was originally devised for space combat, the remarkable hovering speed of the MS-09 Dom allows the Black Tri-Stars to replicate this maneuver on the ground as well