X-COM: UFO Defense, its concepts and personalities are copyrighted by Atari, Inc. I, BioKraze, own nothing save the original plot of this fanfiction.

Tuesday, June 22, 1999. Aliens mount a terror strike on the city of Los Angeles, California at 7:52 pm Pacific Time. The aliens land their battleship just outside of the city limits and proceed to wreak havoc amongst the helpless human population. Police barricade the area to protect other areas from the alien assault. Ten minutes later, fourteen of the Extraterrestrial Combat Unit's elite operatives arrive in their Skyranger to deal with the Ethereal strike...

The heavy footfalls of the Sectopod grind the pavement into dust as it methodically hunts its enemies. The tension of combat is thick in the air, but the Sectopod is unaffected by mere emotions. It is nothing more than a robot, designed to kill with amazing efficiency. Its alien masters have sent it to rout out the civilian populace, to destroy the human innocents at all costs.

Moving swiftly down the car lined road, the Sectopod switches its visuals to thermal mode. There. A human, hiding in a small warehouse. The two story building cannot be more than ten metres long on each side. The human hides behind a stack of sealed crates. It does not suspect its inevitable doom. If the robotic terrorist could grin, it would.

The Sectopod switches visuals again, this time activating its targeting systems. The sights are aligned, and factors such as distance and light are taken into account. The system calibrates for a snap shot. The Sectopod fires.

A blast of plasma energy issues forth from its twin cannons. The bolt of supraheated energy slams into the wall's side and destroys it with little effort. The Sectopod pauses for a brief moment to calculate its next move, mere femtoseconds passing before an action is decided upon. The alien construct calculates the new distance, then switches fire modes. Three quick bursts of plasma fly from the robot's weapons again. Two of the blasts destroy the wall of crates defending the human. The third pierces the human's heart.

A wail of terror and agony issues forth, an agonised female voice. The gaping chest wound spews blood as the mortally wounded cardiac organ tries, unsuccessfully, to pump the vital lifefluid through the dying woman's body. With a groan of pain, the woman slumps to the floor. Her glazed eyes betray her status, and the Sectopod quickly scans her for signs of brain activity. None. She is dead, only one of many victims of the alien attack in full swing. The target is dead, but the Sectopod does not feel any sense of satisfaction.

The robot roams the streets, seeking a new target. Destroying the female took twelve seconds. Too much time has been wasted. The Sectopod seeks a new target, and finds it. Two humans hide behind the wall of a convenience store. Outside, four gas pumps rest on their moorings. The Sectopod calculates firing range again, this time opting to fire a well aimed shot. Again the plasma cannons fire, and this time the blast of energy strikes the nearest gas pump.

With a deafening roar, the pump blossoms into a great conflagration. The force and the heat are enough to ignite the underground storage tanks, blasting the convenience store to charred bits. The humans are instantly immolated by the explosive blast, their bodies reduced to cinders and fragments of cooked flesh. The Sectopod checks the time elapsed. Only seven seconds to kill both these humans. Its efficiency is improving. If the Sectopod could feel pride, it would.

The robot detects motion. Hiding in an alleyway is a human. Not a civilian, but an operative of the agency known only as X-COM. The soldier is clad in armour made of a familiar looking metal. Alien alloy. He holds a red rifle in his hands, two grenades strapped to his belt, along with some unknown electronic device. The human is crouched, anticipating the Sectopod's fire and preparing to fire a shot of his own.

If the robot could laugh and mock the human, it surely would. Yet it is a robot, and robots do not feel emotion. The alien machine calculates the range for this new target, and switches to automatic fire. Soon, the human will be--

The soldier fired his newly designed laser rifle at the robot. The blast of laser energy struck home, blasting through the delicate sensory apparatus and frying out the central processing centres. With a mighty crash, the alien robot toppled to the ground, small explosions separating the legs from their jointed mountings. The lens of the machine was cracked open, revealing a strange emerald fluid that seemed to be some kind of alien nutrient bath. The lone soldier smirked in victory, and moved off to deal with the threat of an Ethereal soldier armed with an impressive rocket like weapon...