1023 T.E (Traction Era)
30 MILES NORTHEAST OF SAMAR
Dark clouds blot the sky as a large thunderstorm rumbles over the raging sea and heavy rain pours down to the sea. Amidst the storm is a small mountain of metal and stone that is coursing through the raging sea and undeterred by the waves it hitting its sides.
This is the amphibious city of Nautica, one of the eight-tier traction cities and also one of most developed cities in the world. For centuries since it is made, it has been a peaceful city hailing from Arafaru which was once a sea now a large land bridge connecting northern Australia and Papua Island. The Nautica usually keeps itself supplied thanks to the solar reactors placed over the extended sides of the first two tiers over the great under tier which serve as the base of the city, and its two-tier botanical farm which provides food to feed the city's inhabitants. The city also usually traded with fellow traction cities or static settlements it encounters on its travels, and only feed upon smaller predator cities that dared attack it.
It has been a grueling time for the city and its inhabitants as they crossed the sea in this storm. Only that it wasn't this storm that the Nautica is worrying about… but rather it is another storm they're worried about.
The heavy rain pounded the windows of the Navigation Center as Maverick Stuart, chief navigator, watches the sea and the sky with one of the telescope stands for signs of trouble. Beside him are two helmsmen currently steering the city and keeping it leveled. It has been a grueling week for them and the city as a whole.
"Any signs of Green Storm?" Chief Stuart asked without looking away.
"None of lookouts reported any signs of Green Storm presence." One of the navigation crew reported.
"Very good." He replied with relief as he stepped away from the telescope stand. "Looks like we can get some rest and make some repairs."
As if to emphasize his point, the overhead fluorescent lamps and the console screens around the room flickered for a few seconds before returning to normal. The crew then checked their respective consoles for any defects that didn't appear.
"Call up the maintenance crew to check our cables and for any damage that needs fixing." He delivered his command the communications officer at his station. He then received an affirmative just as his command is being relayed.
"It's been a rough week." Someone said behind him. He glanced back and saw his second-in-command, Oliver Stones, approaching him. "Thank goodness! We got some break after all that."
"Indeed." He then returned to watching the sea as Stones joined him.
The world had taken a dark turn when the leaders of the largely peaceful Anti-Tractionist League were ousted by an extremist faction called the Green Storm. Green Storm vowed to destroy all traction cities so they can make the Earth green, and had waged a global war to hunt down every traction cities they can find. The traction cities fought back and soon an alliance of German-speaking cities, the Traktionstadgesellschaft, is formed which later grew as the war raged on. The war have been going on for over a decade now, and Green Storm used every resource they can get their hands on.
Unfortunately, the technologies of the Nautica happened to be on their shopping list and the Nautica has been subjected to a number of raiding missions by the Green Storm. They had their first break when they reached for Nihon, far from Green Storm bases, and settled near the eastern coast facing the Pacific Ocean. From there, they've began preparations to step up their defenses. More defensive batteries are constructed along the rim of each tier, several buildings along the outer edges are reinforced and connected with one another, and armored skirts are erected where they can with the limited resources they have.
From there, they've set their course towards the Philippines and travelled over water near the coast before departing from the coastline upon reaching the southernmost tip of Nihon. They made for a straight course for Samar to hopefully trade for some resource and avoid any Green Storm forces. They were first intercepted when they got close to Okinawa where a local Green Storm base has been established and launched a large force of airships. From there, they've fought a defensive battle while they've made a change of course that would take them on a curve into the Pacific Ocean instead of a straight course to Samar.
They then entered a typhoon as they get close to Philippines which deterred their pursuers since airships aren't designed to such weather. From there headed for Samar while keeping close to the coast and they've finally reached their destination where they hope to get some more resources.
The Philippines is one few places in the Anti-Tractionist League where they can make trade or even perform mining expeditions. It is also one of the places that resisted the warmongering ideals of Green Storm, so it is here they hope to get some resources to replenish their stocks and make repairs.
"Chief, we're nearing the coast. Lookouts say they found a large clearing at bearing two-four-zero." The communications officer reported. "No sign of activity."
"Should be as good as any place." Chief Stuart nodded at that. "Tell the lookouts to keep watch." He told him needlessly before giving his command. "Set course for the coast. Bearing two-four-zero."
"Setting course. Bearing two-four-zero, aye." One of the two helmsmen replied before they turned the steering wheels to adjust the city's course.
Chief Stuart felt the sensation of the floor swaying under his feet as the city adjusts its heading. It's an invigorating experience even though he had lived in this city for his entire life. The constant throbbing of the massive engine reverberating throughout the superstructure as it powered the city. This sensation is natural for all of those who lived in the city, and he quite enjoyed it.
He then headed for the chart table located at the center of the room where he joined the two of his crew looking at the large map of Filipinas placed over it. From there he discussed which suitable part of the land beyond the coast to park their city.
It took them over an hour to get within several miles from the coast. The storm had calmed down a bit during that time but the thunder continued rumbling from dark clouds. The city continued steaming for the coast now within their sights.
LOOKOUT STATION BACKGAMMON
The radar operator yawned as he shifted in his seat before resuming to watch the radar displays on the large console before him. Around him are the other operators of the lookout station with their own consoles.
It been a very stressing week especially after the nearly constant chase by Green Storm airships ever since Okinawa. He didn't envy those manning the cannons and batteries during those days. The attacks were relentless as their airship destroyers bombarded them with rockets and even larger airship carriers sending suicidal tumbler bombs piloted by overzealous kids from what they heard.
Lookout Station Arthur is one of the eighteen similar facilities around the Nautica that are tasked with detecting any objects such as airships using a combination of radar and automated telescopes. These equipment are located near the designated point of their tier they're assigned in. They are also used to direct the weapons of the defensive batteries towards hostile targets.
He was drinking some coffee from a tin cup when one of the panels started blinking and buzzing. He quickly checked the radar screens and saw several unknowns being detected which keep increasing.
"What the hell!" He cursed as he placed his tin cup on one side of the console. This got the attention of the other operators. "I'm getting a large number of contacts. Bearing three-three-zero. Range three point three miles."
"Adjusting cams." Another operator stated as he inputted commands into his console. He watched the images on his main screen adjusted and focused on a massive group of darkened shapes floating in the air. The resolutions were adjusted until they showed grainy shapes of airships moving in formation towards them. The silhouettes of the airships matched the looks of Green Storm airship destroyers and the much larger airship carriers. "Airships matching Green Storm designs are confirmed."
"Sounding general quarters."
Allan Magayon was startled when he heard the sirens blaring outside the barracks. He quickly jumped off the bottom bunk of double deck bed along with the others around the room. He already have his uniform on but unbuttoned and his helmet hanging by the wall near him. He quickly grabbed his helmet and then ran out the barracks with the others.
Once outside and under the rain, he can see the alarm klaxons flashing red lights and its sirens blaring loud. The searchlights then lit up and are directed towards the formation of airships. He finally reached the post which is a large gun turret, one of many, with two 130 mm dual purpose guns. He quickly took his place in the gunner's seat with the turret crew already there.
"Gunner Magayon reporting!"
"Receiving firing solutions!" The gun commander reported as he watched the displays of the gun director which is receiving solution from the lookout station.
Allan steered the turrets towards the direction of the airships, numbering over two hundred, within the specification of the firing solutions. The guns are already loaded with flak shells and their fuses set, and the two loaders already setting another pair of shells ready for loading. They then heard the salvo buzzer blaring in a loud even tone, signaling weapons free.
The two guns delivered their salvo alongside the other turrets firing their own salvos from different tiers. Large number of black clouds popped within the nearest formation of airships, and the high velocity shrapnel shredded a number of airship destroyers. The twin 30mm gun mounts started firing streams of tracers into the air and strafing the incoming airship destroyers. Several more airship destroyers are either torn apart by the large bullets or their hydrogen gas ignited by the tracers and burst into flames.
The empty shells were automatically ejected and the guns are quickly loaded with new shells by the loaders. The guns then spoke again and one of the shell tore through one of the airship destroyers before detonating a flak cloud behind it which damage a few airships nearby. By this time, the airship destroyers are within range and began firing rockets back.
Diana Price, drench under the rain, ran along the path between the outer and middle lines at the starboard side of Tier 5. Around her, the RATATATA of the roaring 30 mm guns and the BOO-MPH of the larger 130 mm guns bombarded her ears. She had grown used to it by now but it still deafened her. She noticed a small barrage of rockets heading to her general direction.
"Rockets!" She shouted to the nearby gunners who already took notice. She ran towards the cover she can reach, a concrete barrier, and ducked behind it as the rockets two rockets passed over her and hit the sides of a twin 130 mm gun turret with minimal damage. The rest of the rockets hit the barriers or the floorings.
A number of the 30 mm gunners were thrown by the explosions with several immediately killed by the impact or the shrapnel, and even more were wounded. Medics began rushing from the fortified buildings of the inner defense line and started administering aid to the moaning wounded.
She then returned to running towards her posting which took her over a minute. Her post is a 20 mm gun cluster and behind it is another cluster on an elevated platform already firing tracers. Two of the four gun mounts are already destroyed and the dead gunners are being placed over stretchers by medics. One of the two remaining guns is already occupied which left her the last twin gun mount. She quickly took her post as she sat on the gunner's seat ad grabbed the level controls. She then aimed for the nearest airship destroyer and fired two streams of tracers at it. Her shots shredded its gas envelope add opened a gaping hole where the hydrogen gas started leaking. The airship destroyer then began pummeling towards to the earth.
"Gotcha!" She shouted as she aimed for another target. She then saw the larger airship carriers getting closer and began dropping objects from its undercarriage. Her eyes widened in shock as she recognized those objects to be….
"Tumbler bombs!" She heard someone shouted.
Tumbler bombs are one of the strongest bombs among the Green Storm arsenals, and also one of the most unethical ones as well. It is a large glider bomb piloted by young zealous Green Storm recruits who would stir their aircraft/bomb towards a target of their choosing.
"Focus on those tumbler bombs!" She told the other gunner who nodded back. They aimed their guns at the heading of the tumbler bombs who begin maneuvering through the flak screen. They then started firing at the tumbler bombs with several already taken out by the flak screen. She shot down at least two tumbler bombs with a few more intercepted by the other 20 mm gunners. The rest are coming in too close
She watched as the few remaining tumbler bombs gliding towards them. She jumped off the seat and tried running away. The tumbler bombs crashed and she got thrown to a concrete barrier. The last thing she remembered is increased lighting from the sky and bright blue sprites forming in mid-air before she lost consciousness.
The Green Storm forces are reaching its victory as they are slowly destroying the defenses of the city. As the Green Storm anticipated their victory, lightning storms started sprouted from the thundering storm above as if the gods are angered by their actions.
All over the Nautica, bright blue sprites started forming all over the traction city as lightning-like discharges started flowing across its entire structure. The Green Storm airships took noticed of this abnormal event and started turning away from their prey like a plague.
Then in one final act, several large lightning bolts converged in the storm clouds over the Nautica and struck it in one titanic lightning bolt. And in a blinding flash and thunderous roar, the Nautica is no more.
Hello, fanfiction! It's been so long. I hope all of you like this new story I've started to revamp my stride. I'm sorry for those who were waiting for the updates on my previous stories since I'm already out of steam for them. It didn't help with college works and stresses.
Good news, I finally graduated and I'm currently waiting for the new "review schedule" for the board exam next year.
If you have comments or questions, leave them in the comments or send me PMs. I'm on to write chapter 2, The Arrival.