Drabble-ish thing. I liked Kelly. She had a blue buzzcut, if I'm not mistaking it horribly, and nobody with a blue buzzcut deserves to die. I've never played a Halo game, so I honestly don't know where this crap came from. Summary? Kelly dies on Reach, traumatically.
The beeping close by her jaw refuses to abate, incessantly striving to draw attention to various red lines gathering in the forms of information across the heads-up display of her visor and bleeding into the crack directly before her left eye. Reflexively, her hand claws at the release trigger to rip the helmet from her; she is stopped by the hazardous environment blinker notifying her of the fact that beyond the damaged nanoglass screening her face searing heat and chemical gas dance a wavering tango in her vision.
Still heaving for breath, she braces one arm on the gritty wall and flexes her single good leg in grittier rubble. There. Upright. She is reminded that oxygen levels are low as another light graces the over-crowded laser show of her visor; and the steady squeak of the suit's alarm reaches a new height as the crack in her visor creaks and extends by an inch. Why won't her shields recharge? Is the fusion battery going out?
Tremor four billion and three transforms the supposed blast shelter into a shaker of flaming pepper. The drop-ships are long gone, but she's seen everybody out safely. As she stumbles along the corridors, heavy carbon dioxide suffocating itself in her lungs, she briefly pauses to prod one of her prone comrades with the needle-nosed barrel of her exhausted rifle. Blackened armor crumbles to ash. Perhaps not everybody is out, but there is no mental capacity left for regret.
She moves on, lungs screaming, eye throbbing, useless leg throwing phantom twinges into the overloaded sectors of her brain. Air. Air air air air. Why can't she run? Why is the leg telling her to run when it cannot exist to bear her weight?
With a dull moan, her suit loses power, and a half-ton of titanium alloy deadweight claws her to the ground. She staggers brokenly, hands clawing air, and collapses with a massive clatter through a veil of sulfurous mists; her head caroms off a jutting panel as she keels over.
The visor splinters, and another quake rattles the empty corridor. Hooking fingers under the latch, final adrenaline crushes the mechanism and tears the helmet off even as slag pools from the melting gloves. Oppressive heat slaps her in the face and rushes over her exposed flesh in an inverted ocean's tide of vitrifying energy, searing any tears away with it.
She burns, and she is free, because her body is gone and she can run on phantom limbs.
I think she actually got away in canon somehow, plus Shayrox2000 kindly told me that apparently she's not able to run out of power (I seriously have to play the games now; that makes about zero sense to me), so I'll just slap an AU on this and move on. Or something.