I decided quite a while back that the Uplifted Series needed a total overhaul in spelling, grammar, loose ends, general edginess, excessive cursing and angst. I was procrastinating about every day ever since that decision was made. The longer I let it stay up, the more ugly the series looked to me. I couldn't keep working on a series that just felt like an ugly mess. So I deleted the series to motivate me to update. I'm going to be fixing it up and posting updates as fast as they are done.
Chapter One: January 15th 1942: First Contact
The distant noise on his ears was artillery fire raining over Leningrad, now officially one hundred and twenty nine days into the brutal siege around the city formerly known as Saint Petersburg, a once proud city now scarred with a Bolshevik name. Like everything else controlled by the Reds, it was yet another tumour which would be cut out, the whole cancer that was Bolshevism would be eradicated. It was only a matter of time.
They could not be more than a hundred miles from the siege now. Thankfully however, it was a siege they would not be a part of. A convoy which was heading east towards the front lines of the encircled city was a convenient escort to their real intended destination. Their own detachment of one Hanomag 251 and a lone Panzerkampfwagon IV Ausf G, though had no intentions on joining the convoy all the way to the battle for Leningrad, and instead they moved along with this convoy for several hours; it was safer to travel with them,
Travelling with only a dozen men, a lightly armoured Hanomag and a single Panzer made them easy prey for partisans. Once they got to the site spotted by elements of the 2nd Tactical Wing not five hours ago, then they would get reinforcements. From the excited ramblings, he thought he saw something Soviet and experimental in the area. Knowing Stuka pilot reputations, Sturmbannführer Joachim Hoch could only imagine that the pilot would have fired at the very least one or two bursts of 20mm rounds at the anomaly.
Pushing his long black and very warm jacket against him, he glanced contemptuously at the dozen men of the Wehrmacht Heer. Members of the 16 Army of Army Group North. Men who looked half-starved and weathered, all of them not shaved and smelling as though hygiene was never invented.
Inwardly, Joachim was very torn in his opinion on them. This situation was not their fault entirely. Blame could be found from their arrogant commanders who did not think far ahead enough to know this war would see potentially many Russian winters and simply did not petition their Führer as hard as they could. On the other hand, these men allowed themselves to be bogged down by the Slav hordes, with their Jewish Bolshevik commissars holding pistols and machine guns at their backs. That was not propaganda, that was something he had seen with his own eyes.
The common Soviet was no match for the professionalism instilled in hard regimental training and well won campaigns against the British and the French that he men in the Wehrmacht had. So why now did they break down? It was scarring their almost flawless legacy.
Alas, It did not matter really, spring was fast approaching, a repeat of this failure would not occur again.
"Herr Sturmbannführer, I think there's something in the ice!"
Lighting a cigarette, Joachim glanced upwards to the square jawed soldier manning the machine gun, who was flashing a torch at something. He stood up and joined the Hanomag gunner. His eyes squinted, unable to see anything at first.
Then he saw it, a dull flash of corroded silver. It looks as though the steel was burnt.
Joachim exhaled his cigarette lowly. He simply banged on the roof of the transport. The driver obeyed the silent order and came to an abrupt stop. The Panzer behind them followed the halftrack's lead. The Waffen SS officer turned back to the suddenly very alert looking soldiers.
"Out of the vehicle and form a defensive perimeter," he commanded stubbing his cigarette out on the floor.
The men nodded and filed out, with little discipline, he could not blame them considering their state. Through the bone chilling snow and icy wind they marched, a mixture of Kar 98k rifles and the occasional MP-40's, even the main gun and machine guns of the Panzer IV had been raised at the strange cylindrical machine, like an exotic ship. It was damaged badly, unlikely to be ever used again.
Joachim stepped behind the men, his hand digging into his side holster to tug out his Walther P38, which he held dangling loosely at his side. The tension remained unchecked as the troops nervously stared at the strange vessel. Even Hoch had to admit a sudden wave of nervousness coming over him. One simply did not make these sorts of finds...
Joachim sighed loudly.
"Well, do any of you speak Russian?"
Pulling one hand away from his submachine gun nervously, one of the Unteroffizer's pushed his hand high into the air. Hoch gestured to him, smiling invitingly.
"Well go on then, give them a warning."
The man nodded and stepped forward. A sudden barrage of words in that foul language came from the soldier. Quietly, they waited for a reply that didn't come. Joachim sighed and turned away. He wandered back to the halftrack and dug through the supply crate just inside the transport. Finally he found what he was looking for, a flare gun and several rounds, which he collected.
Loading the gun and firing off enough flares to illuminate the site, it gave Joachim and his men a sense at just how big this crash site was, just how big this ship was. It was roughly the size of a submarine. It was such a sight that even the hatch of the Panzer IV opened and in it stood the panzer commander, in his hands was a submachine gun, adding yet another weapon to the many others pointing at the crash site.
"Herr Sturmbannführer, might I suggest you stay back?" the panzer commander cackled. "My gunner could fire a round at it for good measure."
Hoch rolled his eyes as the commander grinned viciously. Before Joachim could approach anymore closer to the wreck, nor tell the commander off, sudden movement came from the crash site, forcing the Major to freeze in place, his head tilted slightly as he rose his pistol.
"If anyone is in there, I suggest you show yourself. You're surrounded, come out now," Joachim commanded with all of the authority that he possessed. "No harm will come to any of you, if you comply. You have my word!"
At least it was silent as first. They could hear the clanging of metal and the muffling of snow approach them, finally, coming out of the shadow of the wreck was three men, wearing strange full protective gear. Slowly, their hands raised into the air. Joachim bit back the urge to gasp.
Men... No. No, they were not men.
Their arms were spindly, even in the suit they looked thin, their hands unnaturally long with no more than a thumb and two digits. Their legs appeared long and flexible with what appeared like talons for toes. These were not men.
They were aliens.
They were aliens that a jumpy private had fired his rifle at.
A strange sort of blue haze covered the victim of the rifle fire, leaving the being unharmed and the men stunned at the display of seemingly magic technology. In a fraction of a second, the beings reacted. They pulled what looked like blocks off their back, with a press of a button, the block expanded into what looked like rifles. The beings returned fire, several of the men fell as they were shredded open with amazing power.
The rest of the soldiers retreated, firing enough rounds that forced the adversary to duck for cover in the ruins of their vessel. Joachim too ducked into the snow, now forgotten by the alien creatures. What in the hell had happened? As quietly as he could he bolted through the snow past the Panzer. He wasn't running away, he was flanking them. He tugged off his overcoat for better mobility.
Pushing through the crash site, he crouched and silently moved until he was behind the unit of alien beings firing wildly on his men. Without so much as a moment's hesitation, Joachim charged the closest alien threat, his leg kicking out the curvy legged alien as he wrestled the weapon from out of its hands.
They both fell, rolling as they struggled for the only weapon close to them, the one in his hand, his Walther, it too ended up buried somewhere in the snow leaving man and alien unarmed and pulling themselves away from each other as fast as they could.
The alien lashed out, screaming in its unfamiliar language, its long, three digit finger hand smacked against his face, knocking his cap off and messing up his slicked back hair. Again it went after him. This time he was ready, he pushed his body back, dodging the blow before returning a hit, slamming directly into the alien's stomach.
The alien fell to the melting snow, but not before Hoch reached out and grabbed the creature by its throat, dragging the being back up with him.
For the first time, Hoch could carefully examine the creature... it was different from the others, more curves and the faintest sign of breasts hidden beneath the strange suit. It was... female...
Or so he assumed. Before he could put some serious thought to the topic, a sudden and shocking pain erupted in his side. He glanced down blankly, there; sticking into his thigh was a knife. Ignoring the pain to the best of his ability, he turned back to the alien woman and head butted her, letting her fall limply to the ground.
"You bitch!" he growled as his leg swung out and connected hard into her abdomen.
Hoch pulled the blade out and threw it away; digging into his belt he pulled his own Blood and Honour dagger out from his holster. He fell next to her and tugged the helmeted head back, the sharp steel blade pressed against the material. The woman was not frightened in the slightest.
No, her fear did not come about until Joachim's free hand wrapped around metal tubing, shrouded carefully by the hood she wore. With that simple touch, all resistance in her died, suddenly her voice, bright as a bird called to her compatriots.
The resistance died from the aliens, they hid back behind cover staring furiously at the Waffen-SS man who held the woman hostage. Hoch glared right back, there was nothing more he wanted to do than to make these bastards pay with their blood for shooting down so many of the Heer troops.
"Cease your fire! Everything is back under control!" he called out to his men, still breathing deeply as his hand held was still over the piping connected to the aliens mask. He ignored his men yelling furiously as they attempted to drag back what was left of the dead and wounded.
She cried out again to the aliens, this time earning a protesting roar from one of them who did not seem impressed with what she was saying, that or being bossed around by a woman on the field of battle of all places. Taking great care that he was not shot by the soldiers outside, the alien moved out of cover and into the wreck itself. Joachim paid no mind to the almost frightened breathing coming from within the suit, nor the searing pain his stab wound was causing, nor did he pay attention to the fact that there now laid an alien on him, completely undermining everything he thought he knew.
The alien came back, in his hands a small metal box, which he pressed into the woman's hands. She glanced back to Hoch, as though asking for silent permission. The Sturmbannführer nodded, but tugged on the tubes, a reminder of his own that he was in control.
She opened it; in it was a small cylindrical device. Without a moment of hesitation, the woman grabbed it and offered it to the Major.
The device offered was a source of discomfort for Joachim. He simply stared at it distrustfully. The woman shuffled closer in the snow, her long hand pressing against the label of his uniform. She retracted it and touched his ear, making the man that much more uncomfortable. Her hand gestured to her and slowly she spoke, her language still as alien as ever.
Joachim glanced from her and to the men, whose exotic rifles were still pointing at the Wehrmacht men who in turn, still had their weapons raised at them behind the cover of the Hanomag. The Panzer too rolled up and aimed its heavy cannon at the group.
He turned back. In that moment, Joachim knew that bloodshed had to end. This.. this was much to important. Joachim grabbed the device, earning a strange approval from the woman. Her hand grabbed his wrist and pushed it towards his ear. Taking the cue, Joachim finished the job, slipping the device just against his ear canal.
The device hissed and hummed, yet nothing happened. Not at first, not until the machine hummed lightly as it absorbed the noise of the alien cleared her throat.
"This... this was not how we wanted to make first contact," the woman admitted to Joachim, her voice strangely foreign, "I am Captain Hanala'Jarva vas Devoas, and keeping us alive is in your best interest."
"Sturmbannführer Joachim Hoch," Hoch managed to get out without showing any agony in his features. "I have no intentions on harming you, despite your murder of three of my men. But what, pray tell, can you possibly threaten us with."
Very reluctantly, Hoch let go of the pipes coming out of the helmet and stood up unsteadily, his hand reaching out and grabbing his officer cap and slipping back over his freezing head. The alien named Hanala stood as well, her hands in tight fists as she stared down the human.
"There are thirty thousand ships, just like this one waiting for our next broadcast in a month's time," was her answer. Cold as she stared down the man standing over her. "If they don't hear from us, we'll burn your planet off our maps."
Joachim dug his hands into his pocket to produce a gold cigarette box, pulling one of the expensive cigarettes out and lighting it, his thoughts wandering over to the legitimacy of the threat. Aliens with powerful weaponry and the ability to cross the stars and weren't afraid to destroy?
The Sturmbannführer nodded reluctantly, only scarcely aware of the history he was writing.