Dynamic Duo

"Understood, sir. By the way, sir I think Doc should get a look at this creature. I can set up a video feed that he can use," said Corporal Ace Mann on Rasczak's Com link.

"Good idea. Keep me posted, out," Rasczak replied before turning his attention to Delta Squad, "Bravo Squad and Law's Charlie Squad were attacked by those invisible aliens. There were no causalities, but our two duck marauders are out of commission. Corporal Mann did manage to kill one of their assailants, but the two squads are now entrenched in what appears to be an artificially constructed pit and for the moment Mann considers it unwise to move from there. So until further notice they're staying there. In the meantime, let's finish our search of the base. Coles, how far to the reservoir room?"

"It's the last door to the right down this hall," answered the executive.

"Let's get to it then."

When they arrived they found a metal hinged door with a pin code console below the door handle. Higgins leaned over to look at it and after a moment of studying it said, "Well, I suppose I can pry open this security device and rewire it to unlock. Just give me a mo-" but was cut off when Rico moved him aside with an "Allow me" comment and then grabbed the handle, ripped it out of the door along with the console, dropped the parts unceremoniously on the ground, and simply swung open the door.

Rico turned to the flummoxed Higgins, grinned, tapped the chest of his suit and said, "Wonderful stuff, power armor."

Higgins recomposed himself and grinned sheepishly back as he followed Rico into the room. It was pitch black inside, but when Coles was about turn on the lights, Rasczak stopped him and told him to use his night vision. The executive did as he was told. The chamber was quite large and he could see a huge open top reservoir with pumping and purifying machinery around it with pipes leading into six surrounding water tanks. As Delta squad made their way down the stairway, they continued to scan the area for any signs of life. They could detect nothing, until they had reached the bottom when Flores stopped and said, "Lieutenant, I just noticed some movement."

Everyone stopped and Rasczak asked, "What kind of movement?"

"Something very fast, my motion sensors just barely detected it before it disappeared."

Rasczak didn't have to voice his suspicions. Everyone was thinking the same thing: xenomorph and it's watching us. Instead he asked, "Where was it?"

Flores replied, "It started behind that tank marked #3 and disappeared at the # 4 tank."

Rasczak nodded and ordered, "Greene, Rico, switch to flamers."

The sound of their arms snapping back their Morita smart rifles and returning with the heavy flamers confirmed that they had complied and then when Rasczak signaled, the Squad began to advance toward tank # 4. When they reached it, Rico began to move cautiously around the cylinder structure till he was on the other side. Nothing was there. Rico looked around and continued his tour. He stopped when he noticed that something was dripping on his hand. It was some kind of fluid and itmade him think of saliva. Rico glanced up to where it was falling from.

Suddenly, Rico found himself slammed against the floor as something pounced on him and then bounced off. Rico looked up and saw the xenomorph flying toward Coles who then was knocked down by the force of the impact. The xeno then leaped into the air toward Greene who had opened fire, but the creature in its leap dodged the flames and landed on the Corporal, its claws slashing the flamer in half. Flores began firing with her rifle. The bullets clipped the monster on the shoulder, and its acidic blood squirted out narrowly missing Greene. By this time Rico had gotten up fully intending to toast the xeno S.O.B. who was about ready to jump once again. Rico was a mere second from pulling the triggering when he was spun around by something striking him from behind. As he fell yet again he saw what had hit him: a second xeno.

The first one had disappeared, but the new one seemed perfectly happy to take his place: it knocked down Higgins and sent Coles who had just gotten up back on the ground. The xeno landed on the floor and spun around, hitting Greene with its tail, slamming him against one of the tanks. It turned toward Rasczak and leapt toward him.

The Lieutenant watched the creature fly toward him, its clawed hands outstretched and grotesque mouth gaping at him. Of what happened next Robert Higgins would later make a mental note to save as a story to tell his grandchildren. The Lieutenant, in one fluid motion, ducked and as the alien flew over him, grabbed the xeno's tail with his left hand, snapped the creature back in mid-flight and slammed it onto the hard pavement. It lay there stunned and corrosive blood oozed out of its head. Rasczak still hung to the tail however; he wasn't finished with this alien. With a sweep of his arm, he flung it into the air and it impacted on a wall some distance away. The Lieutenant then swung up his rifle, switched to the attached grenade launcher and fired. The battered creature exploded in a spray of flesh and blood.

Delta Squad, having barely recovered the xeno attack, was now trying to recover from what they had seen the Lieutenant do. A stunned Rico commented to Higgins, "That, you should have gotten on tape."

Higgins could only nod, but then he looked up and saw the other xenomorph climbing up the stairway. Rasczak saw it too and ordered, "After him!"

Delta Squad quickly got up and began bounding towards the alien. Within seconds they were all in the hallway and they saw the alien duck into a nearby room on the opposite side of the hall. They advanced toward the room. Rico and Flores looked inside. Among other things, it housed several super computers. There was no sign of the xeno, but it was probably hiding behind one of the computers they thought, waiting to strike again. When Higgins saw what the room contained, and then noticed a rather large red button next to the door and he suddenly had an inspiration. He smashed his fist against the glass encasing the button and pressed it. When he did that, an electronic voice announced though the P.A system: FIRE CONTAINMENT SYSTEM ACTIVATED. PLEASE EVACUATE THE ROOM. HALON WILL BE RELEASED IN THIRTY SECONDS .

Rico and Flores backed out of the room, puzzled. As they did so, a metal door slid into the doorway, sealing the room off. When it was fully closed, they could hear the sounds of some kind of gas being sprayed inside the computer room. Rasczak turned to Higgins and said, "Good initiative, but that metal door will only hold him for a short while."

"Not if that alien requires oxygen to breathe."

"What do you mean?"

"As you heard that voice say, Halon has just been released into that room. Halon is a dry chemical used to put out electrical fires. However it is also an O2 depleting agent. What that means is right now that Halon is sucking all the oxygen in that room. Plus that alien has by now breathed in that stuff which be should wrecking havoc in its lungs."

Suddenly there was a shrill howling sound inside the room followed by several noisy crashes and loud thrashing rackets. After a few minutes the noise stopped. There was a moment of silence and then Rasczak said, "Well, I suppose there's only one way to be sure. Higgins, open the door."

Higgins did so and the Delta squad entered cautiously. Higgins was proven right when they discovered the twitching body of the xenomorph lying on the ground. Rasczak turned once again to Higgins and asked, "Where did you learn about Halon?"

"My dad told me. He was a NYFD fire fighter."