Back Home – Tales

by Warringer

Birth of a Legend

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They called the planet Home. Or at least that is the translation of their worlds name into Intercosmo, just like their races name can be translated into 'The Race'. I suppose that are aptly names, much like 'human' or 'Earth', through the name is slowly cycled out of the media and replaced by Terra.

High above me, in orbit the massive battle between a rather large Doranian fleet and the GDI invasion fleet is still going on and my sensors are counting the massive energy concentrations of the single vessels of both sides and equally massive detonations when a ship is destroyed.

I have touched down about five kilometers west of a small city on Home and about fifty kilometers east from the capital city of Home. Most of the invasion troops were going to touch down there to take control of the planet after about a thousand years of Doranian Occupation and Slavery.

My sensors tell me that there are about a hundred thousand life signs in the city west of me.

I and four of my brothers have been deployed before the actual invasion to prevent any Doranian attempt for intervention from the Doranians. I have encountered some ground based fire, but as one of the prototypes of the BBL-01 Super Heavy Tank, I was more than able to survive the orbital drop, reentry and the ground fire, while retaliating in kind, destroying more than one of the ground based heavy weapons with ma ship grade Particle Beam turrets.

I turned the head of my Avatar towards my commander, Captain David Marcus. He was a good friend of mine and we had been on several invasions of Doranian occupied worlds.

"We should move away from the city," he said," We can't endanger the people there."

I nodded and with a short command the four massive threads of my body began to move, slowly moving my 37kton body and accelerating it towards 50 kilometers per hour.

While accelerating, I noted a contact on my sensors. A Doranian Cruiser, from the signature it was a Quantum One vessel that had already been at three other invasions, with several involvements of BBL-01, moved out of orbit and into the atmosphere.

I narrowed my eyes as I followed its course, interpolating several possible courses of the Cruiser towards the surface. The course with the highest possibility was towards me and the city.

"We get company," I noted dryly." A Doranian Cruiser leaves orbit to intercept us."

David blinked as he looked at me.

"I'm coming to a full stop," I continued as I cut power to my drive motors and drew power from them as they worked as generators.

Again David blinked and looked at my Avatar as if it had grown a second head.

"Target acquired, firing."

My three primary Particle Beam turrets and sixteen secondary Ion repeater turrets opened fire at the cruiser, while I loaded high explosive shells into my three 155mm railgun howitzers.

"Alex, get moving," he said as my shots found their mark, lingering over the Cruisers shields, dropping its strength.

"They will strafe me and than destroy the city if I move."

I winced slightly as the Cruiser returned fire, even through its weapons dropped in power while going through the atmosphere, unlike mine that were designed to be fired inside the atmosphere.

"They will get the city if you don't move."

I knew that he would say that and had already prepared a number of simulations that were now displayed in the main screen of my command center.

"They will do it either way," I noted." And if I move I can bring my entire weaponry to bear."

"And they will get a sitting duck to shoot at."

I gave him a look.

"That is a risk I'm willing to take."

He glared at me while I continued to fire at the currently 100 kilometer high cruiser and it returned fire. I was doing more damage than the cruiser as its shield was already strained from reentry and knowing the rather flimsy hulls of galactic ships, they wouldn't survive reentry without shields.

I on the other hand was more than capable of surviving reentry without much more than light scorching to my hull.

David stood up and glared at my avatar.

"Get moving," he repeated," That is an order."

And it is a good thing that me and my brethren are not bound to the Three Laws, but rather to a moral guideline.

"I'm sorry, Dave. But I can't do that."

"Alexander..."

My body was shaken as several plasma bursts penetrated my weakened shields and slammed into my Carbonat armored hull.

I stood my ground as the Cruiser was getting close enough for the next weapon to engage. Four of my vertical launch systems opened and four HyStrike missiles streaked out, each with a 1kt fusion warhead designed to be used against fortifications, guided by my targeting routines.

"I can't."

David breathed in deep as the VLS cycled to load the next HyStrike missiles.

"Alexander, Command Override Sigma..."

He wasn't able to continue trying to use my command override code as my avatar punched him in the gut with enough force to drive the air out of his lungs and causing him to double over.

"I'm sorry, Dave. But my priorities are clear."

The last simulation had shown that the Cruiser was most likely to detonate in mid air. Correction, it was already detonating in mid air. It started in the front of the Cruiser as another of my salvos smalled into the frontal hull and ignited the hydrogen storage of the main weapons. Secondary explosion riddled through the hull and caused large patches of its hull to fall away from the descending mass of the cruiser.

It had enough momentum to continue with its course and impact into the ground just about a hundred meters in front of me. And the flat trajectory would cause it to slide over the ground and through the city behind me if I would move.

"I was an honor to serve with you," I said and I closed my eyes.

With a quick punch into Davids face, carefully not to break anything, he was unconscious.

I continued to fire at the descending hull of the Cruiser. Trying to chip as much from its bulk as possible. All my VLS opened up now and together with my last reload of HyStike missiles twelve M26 missiles launched towards the hulk.

I took David into my avatars arms carefully and placed his body into the single emergency transmitter. Closing the door to the transmitter, I saluted to my commander before engaging it, teleporting him onto the Pasteur, a hospital ship a lightyear distant from the battle of Ceti Alpha 2.

Continuing to update my simulations, I notes that there wasn't much I could do to reduce the hull of the cruiser to small debris. I could only do one thing.

I closed my eyes again, as I reversed the polarity of my antigravity system, raiding the gravity gradient that gripped me by four time Earth gravity, the maximum possible for it, trying to anchor myself as best as I could while waiting for the cruiser to impact in front of me. Several million tons would have to be stopped before they could destroy the city behind me, seven kilometers distant.

"Lo, there do I see my father," I begin to say.

My VLS run dry as the cruiser drops to four kilometers hight.

"Lo, there do I see my mother, my sisters and my brothers."

My Particle Beam turrets and Ion Repeaters continue to fire as it comes closer, the massive drag of the atmosphere on the open and burning hull slowing the hulk of the cruiser as it falls in its flat trajectory.

"Lo, there do I see the line of my people back to the beginning."

I stop firing as it drops to a hundred meter. My continuous fire has reduced its mass and hulk down to about seventy percent of its original weight, still weighting several million tons.

"Lo, they do call to me."

I idly note that my last simulation is a little off as the burning hulk slams into the ground about two hundred meters in front of me, boring itself several dozen meters into the soft soil.

"They bid me take my place on Asgard in the halls of Valhalla,"

The momentum of the million tons of spaceship drags it forward as the hull hits the ground rock and I reroute all my energy into the shields and my drive motors.

"Where the brave may live forever."

I haven't been moved yet as the hull of the cruiser impacts into my forward shields, the massive kinetic energy causing quantum feedbacks to run through it as it tries to eat away the energy before collapsing. Red lights race through my sensory network as my frontal armor, five meters Carbonat-VIII bucking and ripping open like a soda can beneath my threads.

I can feel how I begin to tilt upwards and my rear is pressed deeper into the soft soil before jamming into the ground rock not even ten meters beneath the surface.

My gamble, my try to save the city is going to be successful, according to my last simulation, as I will act as stopper for the hull of the Doranian Cruiser.

I am designed after the fictional design of a BOLO MK XXXIII, now I will die like a BOLO MK XXXIII. It is now 1132074784.

I wonder if there is a live after death for someone like me?

Only one thing left to do.

"For the honor of the Regiment!"