The two remaining Blue soldiers watched as the Pelican descended, a huge tank falling once it was released close to the ground. A large crash reached Tucker's ears, and it took a moment for the army green death machine to settle on the ground, its treads bouncing into place. The cobalt blue soldier beside him made a noise of approval as he took in the sight, and stated with the wittiest remark he could at that moment.
"Holy fucking shit. Now that is a tank."
Tucker couldn't agree more, and despite the knowledge that a rookie is coming along with this beautiful piece of machinery, the product of this supply drop dampened his annoyance slightly. He kept one eye still on the tank as he surveyed the Pelican's hatch opening, a regulation blue soldier stepping slowly down the ramp, his helmeted head darting in every direction as the newbie surveyed the boring box canyon they were all stuck in. If anything, Tucker reminded himself, the Reds had to share the boredom with them.
He had to admit though, the newbie looked like he was built just like the tank that he was standing beside. He was tall, taller than both himself and Church, and had broad shoulders and an intimidating walk in the power armor. The gold tinted visor tilted toward them, and the rookie began walking towards them, stopping on the side of the tank perpendicular to their own.
What caused Tucker to raise a brow was the second figure lugging a duffel over their shoulder while descending the ramp as well. This soldier was much smaller than the other newbie, looking almost like he wouldn't even reach Tucker's shoulders. The armor he wore was primarily a forest green with lime green highlights, and instead of gold, the visor was black. A knife was strapped to his chest and two submachine guns resided on either thigh. Lastly, a black cylindrical item with small green lights was clipped to her hip, but Tucker had no clue what it was.
Despite being armed, Tucker scoffed quietly and returned his attention to the tank. It was extremely likely that they would both end up to be idiots, as most of the soldiers in this box canyon were, and they would end up to be either dumbasses that annoy him or just plain assholes that annoy him. Although, Church did fill the role of dickhead perfectly, and he would rather there not be more than one, since whatever sanity he had left wouldn't be able to take it.
In his peripheral, he saw the green soldier move to stand beside the blue one and promptly heaved the duffel into the blue soldier's arms. Not a second after, the green soldier took one look at the two more experienced blues, and then cocked one hip out and placed his hand upon it. Tucker had to muffle a scoff yet again, since it was a rather girlish pose, and focused on what Church was cooing in awe.
"You know what? I could blow up the whole fucking world with this tank!" Church exclaimed, and unless his eyes deceived him, the green soldier huffed a small laugh, his shoulders shaking for just a moment.
"You know what, forget what I said before. We could totally pick up chicks in a tank. Probably two or three chicks a piece!"
"Aw man. Listen to you! What are you gonna do with two chicks?" Church asked with amusement in his voice.
Tucker went to reply right away, a witty comparison between women and Voltron on the tip of his tongue, but a growl sounded to his left and an undoubtedly feminine voice spoke up from the side of the tank.
"I would be very careful on what you say next."
Attention from both Church and himself was directed to the two rookies, what with the blue soldier backing up a little and staring at the smaller green soldier. Tucker blinked, staring the soldier that spoke up and down with slowly growing excitement. A chick?! Command actually sent a chick?!
"…Holy shit! Command sent us a chick!" Tucker exclaimed before taking a small step forward, "Hey babe, would you like a tour? I can–"
"You finish that sentence, and I can't be held responsible for what I'll do to you," She threatened.
"Is that a promise?"
He could practically feel the anger radiating off her, and for a moment, he thought he saw flashes of green electricity from behind her tinted visor, before she promptly ignored him and turned her unnerving gaze to Church, "What is it? You're staring at me like I've grown another head."
"A-Another head?" The regulation blue began, "Oh my god! That would mean there would be two Tali's to talk to me! Yay!"
The regulation blue then proceeded to pick up the tiny green soldier and twirl her around, something that Tucker had to blink at in incredulity. What in the world is going on?
"What the— Caboose, sweetie, I'm going to need you to put me down now," The girl, Tali he supposed, requested with an endearing note in her tone. Tucker was appalled. The one girl that comes around!
"Goddamn it! The rookie is already on base!" Tucker groaned. What the fuck!?
"…uh. Hi?" Church prompted, and she rolled her eyes.
"Yeah, hi. Are you done drooling over a Scorpion or are we standing here for a few more hours?" She sassed.
"Uh, there are no scorpions around here lady. Or none that I can see anyway," Tucker stated slowly. Is this chick out of her mind?
She pointed at the tank, "I mean the tank. It's an M808V main battle tank, nicknamed the Scorpion."
Tucker looked between the tank and Tali for a moment, "Why the Scorpion? It doesn't really look like one."
"Because… because the cannon, y'know, looks like the tail, and… ugh, fuck," Tali groaned, suddenly realizing that yes, Tucker was right and now she just felt like an idiot, quickly change the subject Tali, "Don't ask me why, it's just like how they named the M12LRV the Warthog."
"… the hell is a Warthog?" Church asked after a beat.
"It's a jeep with a huge fucking gun in the back," She deadpanned, "If I read your report correct, it's the vehicle that the Reds have currently."
More silence. Tucker thought for a moment, remembering his conversation with Church up on the cliffside, "Yeah, you were right Church. No way are they picking up chicks in that thing."
As Tucker said this, Tali slapped her hand to her visor and sighed, thinking to herself, what have I gotten myself into?
Tali took Caboose's duffel down to the bedrooms, throwing it into the last unoccupied room besides the repurposed bedroom that had mountains of crates piled inside it. She made a noise of distaste as she passed Tucker's room that was so helpfully labeled Tucker's room, KEEP OUT! She left the idiot Blues out at the tank once they started babbling about their girls back home.
She knew this was a horrible idea. She was ordered to only ensure that none of the troopers are fatally injured for whatever reason, and she had been doing her job just fine while she had been cloaked. Whatever possessed her to sneak aboard the Pelican to properly be introduced to Church and Tucker, she had no clue, but she was already regretting it dearly.
Guess I'll still be sleeping on the couch, Tali thought to herself, already planning to steal Church's sniper from its spot in the armory gathering dust in the firing chamber. It's not like Church can shoot it right anyway, so she would be doing the Blue team a favor by taking it from him once in awhile.
She power marched up the ramp leading to the top of the base, taking a glance over at Tucker and Church, who were still chatting by the tank. She resisted rolling her eyes, knowing that she would probably be doing that quite often when she was around them. She didn't want to cause them to roll out of her head one day or something.
"HOLY CRAP, WHO IS RUNNING THIS ARMY?!"
Tali chuckled fondly a little. Good ol' Church.
The green soldier hopped up onto one of the concrete pillars and held the scope of the sniper up to her eye level as she spied Church yelling. Tucker put his hands up in response, backing up a little, but that wasn't what caught her eye.
The top of a flag passed by her scope, and she blinked in confusion.
Taking the sniper away from her eye, she squinted as she peered over the edge of the base, eyes widening as a regulation red soldier went sprinting past. Was that…
She ran a quick bio scan, and she groaned audibly. Goddamn it, Donut.
"Church! Tucker! Get up here!" Tali called from her perch, knowing that Church is likely going to get his shout on as he normally did. She prepared herself for the oncoming headache, jumping down from her pillar with the sniper in her arms still.
"For the love of god, what rookie? Bad enough I have this idiot babbling in my ear…" Church trailed off as he spotted the rifle in her hands, "The fuck!? Hands off the rifle, rookie!" He yanked the rifle out of her hands before she could even blink.
And just like that, she snapped. Even though Church didn't know it, he knew how to push her buttons, with his memory or not, and she felt her fingers begin to twitch, wanting so badly to form into a fist.
Tucker and Caboose just ran up the ramp when Tali growled, "Okay, three things. One: I'm not a rookie. Two: My name is not rookie. It's Tali. Three: I called you up here because your precious fucking flag has been captured by one of the Reds you oblivious son of a bitch!"
Slowly, Church turned to Caboose, "So let me get this straight. You gave this guy our flag."
Tali gaped, throwing up her arms, "Go ahead and ignore me then!"
"Eh, that's just Church's way. If he's not insulting you, he's pretending that you don't even exist," Tucker supplied to her, looking out at the canyon in search of the Red. "There, there he is!" Tucker exclaimed, causing Church to run up to her left and look through the sniper rifle.
"Where? Oh yeah, oh I got him! He's sneaking around back by the cliffs."
"He must be one smart son of a bitch," Tucker commented.
"Or he's just really lost," Tali proposed, since she knew for a fact that Donut had no clue where he was going. Generally, Donut has a horrible sense of direction, much like Caboose does, and being new to the canyon, Donut was more than likely going to be running in circles for quite a while.
"Nah, his armor's Red. That means it's their Sergeant," Church shot down her proposal.
"Or he's a new recruit," She persisted.
"How would a new recruit get past our defenses?" Church questioned her rhetorically, "Nah, he's the leader."
"Uh, you know… he came in through the back door where you guys were standing," Caboose piped up from behind them all.
"Let's take him out then," Tucker ignored Caboose's claim.
"Alright. Say goodnight, Sarge," Church boasted prematurely, firing off four shots and missing by a mile.
"…I can see why command sent you reinforcements," Tali mentioned offhandedly.
"What the– do you know how to use this thing?" Church spluttered.
"Well if you're so confident, why don't you hit him with it?" Church shoved the gun into her hands, and she stared at him, unimpressed.
"Church, you just wasted the entire clip. And I doubt you have another on hand currently," Tali deadpanned, really not wanting to deal with this currently. She literally just introduced herself ten minutes ago, and already a ludicrous situation has risen.
"She's kinda got you there Church… and you suck with that thing," Tucker added, "Oh look, and now he's taunting us. That's just embarrassing."
"Alright, that's it! Rookie–"
"His name's Michael J. Caboose," Tali interrupted him.
"Agh, fine! Caboose, Tali, you two stay here while Tucker and I cut him off at the pass!"
"Uh, right!" Caboose nodded once.
"Tucker, you ready? Let's go!" Church ordered the cyan colored soldier.
"There is no way I'm going through that thing."
"Tucker, we don't have time for this! Why would they give us a teleporter that doesn't work?" Church asked to try and convince him.
"I don't know! Why would they send us a tank that no one can drive?" Tucker retorted.
"We already tested the teleporter, remember?"
"We threw rocks through it!"
"So what? The rocks came through the other side didn't they?"
"Yeah, but they were all hot and covered with black stuff!"
Wow. This was like watching a tennis match. A lot more entertaining though.
"Oh so I guess that's what this is all about then? You're afraid of a little black stuff?"
"Yes, I am. I'm afraid of black stuff."
"Tucker," Church raised his assault rifle, "I almost hate to do this to you…"
Was he seriously going to make Tucker go through the teleporter at gunpoint?!
"I look at it this way. Either A, we go through there, and get the flag back, or B, we stay here, and I get to kill you. Either way, I win!" Church declared, but Tali had had enough. She didn't care who it was, no one threatened their own teammate.
"Private Church," Tali lifted her magnum and aimed directly at his helmet. It wouldn't actually kill him, but Church didn't know that, "I'm going to have to ask you to lower the weapon."
"Oh, are you serious?!"
"I'm usually pretty lax when it comes to this sort of situation, but threatening a teammates life at gunpoint? Uh-uh, not gonna fly. Now, Tucker," She turned to the Aqua soldier, "Extensive testing has been done on this teleporter. You won't be injured when passing through it, I assure you. At most, there might be a small delay of you appearing on the other side."
"You're positive?" Tucker asked.
"I'd bet your life on it," She confirmed.
"Okay," He faced the teleporter, before his brain caught up with what she said, "Wait, what– ah, fuck!"
Church glared at her through his visor, while she shrugged and holstered her pistol.
"So, you pull a gun on me and kick Tucker through a portal and all is fine, but I pull a gun on Tucker and all the sudden I'm Benedict fuckin' Arnold? The fuck was that Tali?" Church yelled.
"You started it!" Tau placed her hands on her hips.
"I started it?! I wasn't actually gonna shoot him, while who knows with you! You're not even wearing blue!"
"Fuck off, Church! At least I can shoot straight!"
"Uh, guys?" Caboose called, "Tucker didn't go through the other side…"
"And I just decided I'm not going to use the teleporter!" Church exclaimed, hopping off the top of the base, "I'll be back with the flag!"
"Oh my god…" Tali groaned, ignoring Caboose's questioning glance, "I should've just stayed in camo."
Tali crossed her arms and huffed as she watched Caboose drive off in the Scorpion. She wasn't quite sure what Caboose was planning, but she decided that with FILSS installed inside, he couldn't cause that much damage. Plus, she figured it would be amusing to watch.
"Oh, Jesus!" Tali jumped five feet in the air, whirling around to see the giggling girl waving cutely at her. The green armored agent sighed in annoyance, turning to the oddly colored soldier, "What are you doing here?"
The power armor the younger girl wore was a deep cinnamon color primarily, but the secondary color consisted of a dark prussian blue. Her visor was tinted a deep blue, and a blue plasma rifle was clipped to her thigh. On the opposite hip was a green plasma pistol.
"I just noticed that you came out of hiding, so I wanted to ask you how you were amongst the chaos," The girl replied, a small smile on her face behind her visor.
Tali crossed her arms again, leaning back on one foot, "You should really be over at Red base. Y'know, making sure they don't die?"
"April," Tali stepped forward, grasping her shoulders, "I know this isn't the best… situation we're in. But we have to do our job. He'll have our heads if we don't."
"Just like how Libby did her job?" April spat bitterly.
Tali turned away, ignoring the pang to her chest at the mention of her. The small square of metal in the hidden compartment of her armor felt heavy in her possession at her name, and she replied with a tired exhale, "I'm not going to start an argument with you. I'm just reminding you of what is at stake. You really didn't think running off like that wouldn't come with consequences if you were caught, did you?"
Whatever April was going to reply with, it was silenced once the two girls took in the sight of the Red team's Warthog cartwheeling in the air, Grif and Simmons running as fast as they could to their base. The tank's barrel recoiled back before thrusting forward again, another explosive shell rocketing from the death machine and blowing a new crater into the ground far too close to Grif and Simmons' feet for comfort. April made a gasping noise before darting away without another word, and Tali contacted her through the link.
:Told you so:
:Don't be like that, Tali!:
Tali couldn't help but be a little proud of Caboose. Caboose scared off Grif and Simmons and wrecked their shiny new Warthog, which will more than likely boost Church and Tucker's spirits. Well, maybe not Church's, but possibly Tucker's. Not to mention, that tank was really powerful, intimidating, and cool.
She watched as Church stood from his hiding spot and shouted down praise to the new recruit, and she couldn't help but smile. It's nice to see him not yelling out of anger, that's for sure.
She tuned into Caboose's radio with her limited abilities, and was puzzled at the dialog inside between Caboose and FLISS… or, she supposed Sheila, since that's what Caboose was calling her.
"New target acquired."
"That's not a target, that's Church!" Caboose chirped happily.
"Yeah, that's right, it's me! Church! What's going on man?" Church hollered down, and all the blood drained from her face.
Oh no… the auto-lock is on Church.
"CHURCH!" She screeched, jumping down to the ground and wincing at the impact (how did they do that so easily?) and sprinting as fast as she could, "GET BACK IN COVER!"
Fuck, he couldn't hear her!
Thinking fast, she found the signal for one of the men's comm units (she didn't know which one), and patched through a link.
"Hey!" She called into the comm.
"Huh? Tali, how'd you get this frequency? We haven't patched you into the radio yet…" Okay, so it was Tucker.
"Tucker, get Church back into cover now!"
"Wha–why? The Reds are gone!"
"The tank! It's locked onto–"
"What? No! Target unlock! Unlock! Please help me nice tank lady!" Caboose cried.
"Tucker, get him in–"
She was nearly to the tank. Over the small slope, past the pile of rocks, and she'd be there. But it wasn't enough.
"Firing main cannon."
"Uh-oh." Caboose gulped.
"Uh-oh." Tucker mimicked.
"No!" Tali's cry was drowned out by the huge explosion, and she watched helplessly as Church's body flew high into the air and landed behind the outcropping, blood spewing everywhere.
Her only comfort was that he was never fully human, and, if he could figure out his ability, can come back as an A.I.
"Holy fuck! You shot Church you team killing FUCKTARD!" Tucker screamed at Caboose from the cliff above.
:Well that didn't go too well: April commented over the link, and Tali growled.
Not ten seconds after Church's untimely demise, the tank swung itself around and began firing shot after shot into the Reds jeep, eventually causing it to flip onto the Reds base, and if it were at any other time, she would've laughed at their panicked banter.
Instead, she blocked the one way comm with the Reds.
Tucker ran down the cliff with soot covering his armor, running dangerously close to the tank and yelling, "Why do you keep shooting the jeep?"
"Because it's locked on!" Caboose replied hastily.
"So unlock it!" Tucker stated, as if it were that simple.
"Last time I unlocked it, I killed Church!" Caboose snapped in a rare moment.
"Oh, right… keep shooting the jeep then."
She vaulted over the pile of rocks before running up beside Tucker, stopping just before the tank and panting lightly.
"Did you sprint the whole way here?" Tucker asked, bewildered.
"I tried to get to the tank before…" She trailed off, bending over and placing her hands on her knees, "Oh Jesus…"
She stayed there for a moment, muscles tired and aching, breath short and heart racing, staring up at the cliff where Church was standing moments before. Her one objective was to protect him and she had failed.
Failed. Again. But that's all you're good for, aren't you Taurus? You're a good scapegoat and you're a good distraction when your temper goes straight to your head. That's what you are, and to think that you could even attempt being a protector instead of an assassin, a destroyer, is a joke in itself.
She blinked as she felt a weight on her upper back, drawing her away from the dark place inside of her head. She forced herself to stop thinking and she turned her head to see Tucker gazing down at her with that expressionless helmet.
"Hey, it wasn't your fault that happened."
He was… comforting her?
Huffing slightly, she straightened, his hands slipping off her back and her cold-hearted mask returning only a moment after it was shattered, "Yeah… doesn't matter since it shouldn't have even happened in the first place."
Suddenly, a whooshing was heard overhead, and Tali looked up to see a ship deploy something before speeding off into the sky.
"Ah… that was a bomber wasn't it?" Tali whined, feeling Tucker pull on her arm.
"Uh, Caboose? You might want to get out of the tank. Like now!" Tucker struggled to pull Tali back, who was fighting to get to Caboose.
"I can't figure out how to get this thing open!" Caboose cried.
"Tucker, let me go!" Tali squirmed out of his grasp, sprinting to the tank as the bombs began to hit the ground. She'll save one. She'll save him.
"Tali, get back here! Rookie, get out of the tank now!" Tucker yelled, panicking.
Tali jumped up onto the tank, standing above the driver canopy. Raising her first, she smashed it down on both sides of the canopy, effectively knocking the hinges off, and heaving the metal canopy off of the tank.
"C'mere Caboose… let's go," She helped Caboose out of the tank, pushing him away from it as she jumped down.
"Running, running, running, running…" Caboose muttered as he sprinted, Tau not far behind.
The final blast flipped the tank right on its cannon, treads in the air and life sparking out of the A.I. inhabiting it. She was knocked forward by the blast, shields flashing dangerously. Tau breathed a breath she didn't know she was holding, sandwiched between Caboose and Tucker.
A couple more seconds, and Caboose would've been dead.
"SHEEEEEIIIILLLLLLLAAAAA!" Caboose drew out his cry, and Tucker joined in.
"Sheila! Sheila, no! Sheila!…wait, who's Sheila?"
"Sheila's the lady in the tank. She was my friend…" Caboose stated sadly, and Tali had the sudden urge to give him a hug.
"Oh, dude! I knew you could pick up chicks in a tank!" Tucker exclaimed.
A dark rain cloud settled over Tali's head, and she clipped the back of Tucker's helmeted head with her gloved hand (she had to hop slightly since he was taller than she predicted… everyone was taller, it was a problem), and stormed off back to Blue base.
Hello! Lonessa here, this is my first fanfiction regarding Red vs Blue, and I'm rather excited. I've been wanting to make a story for RvB for some time, but I've never gotten around to it until now. This story is going to jump between time at Blood Gulch to the time before Blood Gulch for the BGC. Sorry if that confuses you, but I will put a note in the beginning of the backstory chapters to let you all know.
Also, after school starts again, updates may be a little spotty, so I'd like to apologize in advance.
So this will mostly be told from Tali's POV, and sometimes from April's or Tucker's. Honestly I don't plan the POV changes, I just write and stuff happens haha. Oh, and if any of y'all are interested in RWBY fics, check out my other work, The Weight of History.
Lonessa out :)