Disclaimer: I do not own any rights to IS: Infinite Stratos or any content/references that're used. This Fanfic is made just for entertainment and not for commercial use in anyway.
Author's Note: Alright guys, I just want to let you guys know that the date on the events of this Chapter are changed. Reason for this is so that it'll have a better fit with the Canon's timeline later on in the story.
9:13 PM, June 24 2021. Thunder Crash Base Outskirts.
On a cloudless night, in the forest near the coastline in Shimoda, Shizuoka Prefecture, we're traversing to our old home in order to get the Silverback Combat Armor.
At this moment, I'm taking point with Sideswipe, Ratchet, Tezla and Scourge in tow.
All of us are keeping quiet as we're going, not wanting to draw any attention. The stealth approach basically, we want to get as close as we can to the base undetected.
The brush of the forest soon got less and less dense and the moonlight broke through the tree branches as we went on, indicating that we'll be reaching the edge of the forest, and then base.
So far we haven't ran into any Phantom Task patrols, seems that Tezla's Intel on them withdrawing some of their forces is solid.
Looking further ahead, I can see the moonlight reflecting off of the ocean surface up ahead, indicating that we've reached the edge of the forest.
As we approached the tree line from the forest side, there stood the ruins of our old home, right by the shore.
"There it is. Where this whole thing began…"
"Never thought that we'll actually be coming back…"
Sideswipe's taking a good scan of the area, while Ratchet and Scourge were on look out.
"Damn, they've sure did one hell of a cleanup."
"Well, let's hope that they haven't found the lab yet. Keep moving, Alpha."
Even though we're right by the base, we couldn't just waltz right in. It'll blow our cover. So instead we went along the tree line in search for a better entry to the base.
Within a short walk, Sideswipe spotted two patrol men up ahead, stopping to have a smoke.
"Okay, Tezla, Ratchet, Scourge, you guys hold here and stay low. Sideswipe…"
I deployed my right forearm mounted combat blade and made a hand gesture to indicate him to take the patrol man on the left, while I take the one on the right…
Everybody made a nod before Sideswipe and I moved on. These guys were about 6 meters (little over 20 Ft.) in front of us.
While we're sneaking through the bush, these guys are completely oblivious of our whereabouts as they're having a smoke.
Before long we're lying low behind our targets, time to tell them that smoking can kill.
I looked at the patrol man that standing in front of my target, to see a hand appear right next to his head and cover up his mouth. Then I follow suit, popping up behind my target, covered his mouth, and we both placed our combat blades against their throats…
Blood spewed out of their necks, a bit of it land on both of us as we drop the bodies.
"Man, they said smoking kills, but not like this."
Sideswipe was wiping some of the blood off his face as we hid the bodies in order to keep our presence as low as possible.
"Assassinations like this are really not my forte…"
Not long after we hid the bodies, Tezla, Ratchet and Scourge, caught up to us.
"It's going to be a long night if we keep this up."
"No shit at this rate."
"What? Do you guys want to have a small chat here? Let's keep moving."
I went on ahead with Sideswipe following, and everyone else following shortly behind.
After our encounter with the patrol men, we then found an area that has shipment containers in the vicinity of the base. These containers will provide good cover to get on to the base undetected, more or less. Ratchet also noticed this as well.
"If we're going to get into the base, I'm guessing this is our best bet, Hot Shot."
I took a scan of the area to make sure it's all clear, and it is. I made the signal to bolt for the nearest shipment container.
"Tezla, once we get to the entrance to your lab, do we need anything to get inside?"
"I got my command keys with me, that's all I need to unlock it."
Cautiously going, we went from one shipment container to another, getting closer to the base.
"Doc, about the Silverback; how exactly can it be a match up to the Infinite Stratos?"
"Think of it as a hybrid IS, but for guys, Brian. One that could restore the balance of power…"
Tezla's face then turned to a worrisome look.
"Or it could cause a global war for power…"
Ever heard the saying 'high risk comes with high reward?'. That's exactly what's been said here, this project is high risk.
"Alrighty then... Looking forward to that…"
As we reached the last shipment container, the ruins of a hanger stood about 30 meters (around 100 Ft.) away from us. We need to get through that hanger in order to get to Tezla's lab.
Strangely enough, there are no patrols around the hanger. But we need to keep moving.
As we got closer to the hanger, I began to recognize the damages on it. The doors on it were severely bashed inwards to the hanger, and above it is a massive hole around 3-4 meters (10-13 Ft.) in diameter and massive craters near the doors.
Yes, this is the same hangar that we retreated in when Phantom Task attacked 7 months ago.
We can't just simply go through the front door; it'll most likely be suicide.
"Guys, let's go left, remember the hole in this hanger? Let's go through there…"
And just as I remembered from that attack, there's the hole in the side of the hanger that was caused by an IS.
Cautiously, we all snuck in. The hanger is fairly lit, but surprisingly no body's there.
"Tezla, you sure weren't kidding that they're withdrawing their forces…"
Sideswipe was taking a quick look around the hanger, to find that it's empty of any personnel.
A red beam suddenly turned towards Sideswipe.
He then ducked down behind a table that's turned on its side. Soon all of us were taking cover; with me, Tezla, Ratchet and Scourge behind a massive pile of debris in the corner of the hangar.
"Sideswipe, what is it?"
"Over there, sentries."
Sentries are set up on the other side of the hangar, constantly scanning the hanger for any hostile forces. In this case; it's scanning for us.
"How many do you see?"
"I count four…"
As we're cautiously watching the sentries scan, Tezla then took out a smoke grenade and was about to arm it.
"Tezla, what are you doing?"
"Eric, these Smoke Grenades can do more than just create smoke to provide cover."
"What do you mean?"
"The smoke grenades that we have are working Silverback prototype weapons. This thing can not only shoot out smoke, but it can emit electrical jamming waves to mess up electrical sensors a second after detonation."
I then took a look at the sentries before a red beam 'spotted' me.
"And these are the same smoke grenades that you guys were using for Thunder Crash's final months of active service and most likely during that attack."
"Wait a second, Tezla."
Scourge had jumped in with a puzzled look as if he remembered something.
"These smoke grenades can mess up an IS's hyper sensors, too? Cause I remember planting some on an IS to buy us time."
"Well, an IS's Hyper Sensors are believed that it can't be affected; but possibly yes, Clay. If it's an IS, it won't affect it as much compared to other conventional electrical sensors."
"So in other words…"
"These smoke grenades can mess up those sentries' sensors."
"That's right, Eric."
Ratchet took a look at one of his smoke grenades.
"I was wondering why that IS didn't find us after we left that Training Room. We unintentionally messed up her Hyper Sensors long enough for us to get away."
"We can have this chit chat later, guys. Right now, we have to get to that door."
I pointed out a doorway that leads out of the hangar. And if memory serves right, it leads into the mechanic shop.
"Tezla, do it…"
A smoke grenade was thrown to the center of the hangar.
*Dong* *Dong* *Dong* *Ps-s-s-s-s-s-s-s-s-s…*
Shortly after smoke began shooting out of the canister shaped grenade, the red beams that were scanning the whole hangar started to go all over the place; putting the sensors in disarray. Now is the chance to make our move.
"Go. Go. Go."
We all broke cover and bolted towards the doorway, leading into the mechanic shop.
"You guys okay?"
"We're all good here, Hot Shot."
We've reached the mechanic shop that's connected to the hangar, the area we're in is small, but it's not the main shop area.
"Come, we got to keep moving."
We then walked down a wide walk way that leads out of the small area we were in, to the main shop area.
As we reached the end of the walk way, we see that the main shop area has huge military cases, probably used to put heavy artillery in for transport. And those aren't the only things in there…
"Quiet guys, Phantom Task up ahead."
Near the center of the main shop area stood a small group of Phantom Task's foot soldiers, probably some of the 'search group' that's doing the final stages if their search.
Apparently these guys are checking on an APC that's next to them.
Unknowing to them, we took cover behind a tank on the right side of the shop as we entered.
Scourge was looking at the group, with his Saber assault rifle in hand.
"Hot Shot, we're not sneaking past them are we? We got a score to settle."
We did get to the base undetected. And Tezla did mentioned that there would still be some Phantom Task soldiers here while they're pulling out...
With them in the way of getting to Tezla's lab, I pulled out my Bolt Rifle.
"Yeah, we have…"
I tapped Sideswipe on his shoulder and pointed at another APC that's on our left from looking at the group of Phantom Task soldiers.
We both then moved to the indicated APC and once in position, I looked back at Tezla, seeing a slight nod from him and everyone else ready with rifles in hand as I aimed my Bolt Rifle at one of the soldiers.
With massive kinetic energy and accuracy, the bolt spiked the soldier's head into the broadside of the APC.
Scourge began to jeer as he's firing a barrage of Saber rounds, triggering a firefight.
"Surprise bitches! We're back!"
"Cover Tezla! He's got the sparks."
Phantom Task returned fire from their indicated position as they split off into 3 small groups.
One staying next to the APC, taking cover behind a turned over workbench, another moving left behind a stack of shipment crates and the last one firing from atop of their APC in attempt to get a height advantage on us.
I turned my attention towards the group on the APC, firing my Bolt Rifle hand.
*BANG!* *BANG!* *BANG!*
"Take out those guys on that APC!"
Tezla's firing his Saber at the indicated group.
"Tezla, just keep your head down!"
Tezla threw a smoke grenade at the group next to the APC, to take some of the pressure off of him, Ratchet and Scourge.
A massive barrage of Saber rounds flew at the group of soldiers at the top of the APC, piercing through them.
"Come on… whose next?"
Ratchet reloads his Saber as the soldiers bodies dropped down from the APC into the cloud of smoke below…
That takes care of one group, now there are the other two…
"On the left, behind the crates!"
Sideswipe took aimed at the indicated crates with his Saber as the second group of soldiers began to fire from there.
I armed a Claymore Frag grenade.
With a hard throw, the grenade hit the crates and fell on the ground.
*Beep* *Beep* *Beep*
The crates were blown into splinters as the group of soldiers comes out disoriented from the shockwave of the claymore.
"Take 'em out!"
With Sabers in hand, Sideswipe and I hosed them down before they were able to recover.
After killing the group, Sideswipe took a look at their APC.
"Where's the last group?"
I took a quick scan of the mechanic shop, to see that the smoke that was next to their APC cleared out.
"Sideswipe, let's move up!"
We both broke out of cover and moved towards the APC. As we got up to it, nothing was there except for the corpses of soldiers that Ratchet and Scourge took down.
It came from atop the APC. A soldier jumped down with a combat knife in hand and ready to strike.
I grit my teeth a bit as I was about to swing my right arm at the diving soldier…
The soldier slightly flew back, and hit the ground. Lying completely motionless as a pool of blood forms around the body.
"Can't stop this!"
The barrel from Scourge's Saber was smoking as he was checking it.
As Sideswipe was about to examine the body, Tezla spoke through the radio.
"Eric, Eddie, behind you!"
We turned around and both found a soldier ready to strike us with knives in hand.
Sideswipe ducked and ran underneath his attacker arm as he swung his knife, getting behind him.
He then grabbed his attacker by the right side of his chin and the left side of the back of his head.
Sideswipe twisted his attacker's head around and released him, letting his lifeless body fall.
"That didn't sound good."
As my attacker swung his knife, I put my left hand up…
His knife gripped hand is caught in my left hand. I pulled him towards me and thrust my right fist into his gut.
While he's stunned from that punch, I swung my right fist, sending his head downwards. Following up with an upward swing…
My attacker's face had been sliced across as he fell back, lying dead.
I took a quick scan of the shop and retracted my right arm mounted combat blade.
"All clear, form up."
Now that we had the mechanic shop cleared up, all of us head to a roll-up garage door that's at the other end of the shop from where we entered.
This door leads out into the vehicular testing field. It's like the ones you see at auto shops, the ones where they roll up and down to open and close it, and at the top of the doorway is where the door 'rolls up'.
But, it's not going to be easy to get it to open because it's locked and the chain that's used to open and close it is cut off.
"Damn shame we don't have Hawkeye to open that door. I miss the little guy!"
"Hey, he's not scrap yet okay, Scourge!"
Ratchet emphasizes Scourge.
"I'm just looking for a new power supply for him. He'll be better than new before you know it."
Unfortunately, Hawkeye had to be deactivated after we escaped from this base. He went through as much as we have and was in need of major repairs. And out of the four of us, Ratchet's the only one who can get Hawkeye fixed. Tezla can fix him too, but he already has enough on his plate.
And with him in Ratchet and Scourge's dorm room back at Ishiyama High, it leaves us with an alternative. I raised my Saber's chainsaw bayonet up.
"Let's just open this the Alpha way."
Ratchet revved his Chainsaw Bayonet and we began to cut along the sides of the door and then cut across the door at around Scourge's Height.
Once we've met in the middle of the door, we shut off our chainsaws.
*BAM!* *Bam* *Bam…*
I kicked the door piece that we've cut down and we're now in the testing field.
Sideswipe and I took a scan of the yard as we left the mechanic shop.
Ratchet, Scourge and Tezla then began to follow suit.
This yard is very open, other than the APCs and Tanks out here, it was relatively empty. But that doesn't mean things are any easier…
"There's a lot of open ground here. Stay alert for snipers."
We navigated through the field by going from APC/Tank to APC/Tank. And before long, we've reached the training facility. The entrance to Tezla's lab shouldn't be too far from where we are.
"Okay, Tezla. How far is the entrance to your lab from where we are?"
"It's not far, Eric. We just need to get through the training facility and then into my maintenance shop. What's left of it that is…"
"Stay sharp, guys. I saw some movement in there."
Sideswipe had his Saber ready in hand; aiming at the opening in the side of the facility, as we slowly approached it.
"Did they see us?"
Ratchet checked his MAC-10s.
"Well, they know that we're here now. And possibly know where we're heading."
Tezla tossed me two dark blue canisters. They're a Stun Grenades, or also known as a Flash Bangs.
"That should give us enough time to clear the place out."
We all approached the sides of the opening as I held the Flash Bangs in hand.
I looked to my squad and Tezla and they gave me a nod to indicate that they're ready.
Without hesitation, I armed and threw the Flash Bangs in the facility.
We all bolted in after the send detonation.
Even though we were behind cover from the Flash Bang's effect, it still disoriented a bit of our hearing as we stormed in; shooting down the disoriented Phantom Task's soldiers.
When the last soldier fell, it should've taken care of the training facility.
Someone revved their Chainsaw Bayonet.
It was Ratchet and he began to bring it down on a soldier who we apparently missed…
*Grshsck!* *Gshck!* *Krck!*
Blood is splattering everywhere until his Chainsaw Bayonet cut through his attacker from his right shoulder to his left hip.
"Oh, that's just… that's just gross…"
Ratchet remarked as he's mostly covered in blood.
"Heh, here man."
Scourge tossed a rag to Ratchet so he can wipe the blood off of his face and armor.
Okay, according to Tezla, we should be close to his lab entrance.
"You know, even though you said that Phantom Task is pulling out of here, I was expecting more of a whole battalion here, or a division or something…"
Sideswipe's taking a look around the training facility, Saber ready in hand.
Now that he mentions it, there's been little resistance from Phantom Task at this point. Actually, it was almost non-existent.
They could possibly...
"Well maybe they're pulling out sooner than we expected. Either that or something else must be up…"
"Either way, it makes getting to the doc's lab a whole lot easier."
"Yeah, and that's what's got me all puzzled about their little resistance, Ratchet…"
I was examining one of the corpses to see if he's got any Intel on Phantom Task's plans, only to find out that he doesn't have squat. I would examine every corpse that's littering the training facility, but given the situation we can't…
"Keep moving, Alpha."
Slowly traversing through the semi dark corridor, we're getting closer and closer to Tezla's lab and the Silverback combat armor.
"Okay, I really need to know what Phantom Task is after. Why the hell is Phantom Task after the Silverback if they have ISes?"
Ratchet broke the silence as we're making way.
"I mean, the IS is currently the world's super weapon, but are they after more power for shits and giggles or something?"
"We'll never know until we find out for sure…"
We've reached the end of the corridor and in front of us is a door that leads into Tezla's maintenance shop.
I can hear a lot of activity that's going on the opposite side. Sounds like they're getting ready for our arrival…
"Okay, these bitches are waiting for the main entrance. So…"
I looked back at everyone, readying their weapons, including Tezla. For this, we'll need every gun blazing…
Even though we're going to face heavy resistance, the maintenance shop's most likely going to be crammed up. I switched to my two Desert Rangers. In this kind of condition, it's best to use side arms so you can have better aiming and mobility in such a crammed environment.
Ratchet had his MAC-10 SMGs ready, and everyone else had ready with their Sabers.
Seeing this, I approached the door, tightly gripping my Desert Rangers in both hands.
I swung my right leg at the door…
*PA!* *PA!* *PA!*
Firing my Desert Rangers in a quick-draw fashion, I lead the surprise attack.
Scourge rushed in with his Saber blazing right behind me as we all stormed the maintenance shop.
*Dadadadadadadadadadadadada.* "Guess who motherfuckers!"
We shot down every soldier that was in our path, due to the sudden drop we got on them, and Ratchet's MAC-10 SMGs.
They were expecting us to go through the main entrance, not through the shop's corridor connecting to the training facility.
"We got some more!"
Scourge took aim at the back of the shop; more of Phantom Task's soldiers were waiting behind the turned over work benches.
I shot two of the soldiers in the head, splattering their heads.
"Watch the sides!"
We're all split into two groups at the front part of the shop; Tezla and I are behind cover on a turned over work bench while Sideswipe, Ratchet and Scourge are behind a stack of heavy gun cases, near the center of the maintenance shop.
It's a deadlock, not any one of us can make a move towards the back of the shop. And this is no time for a deadlock!
I pulled out my remaining Claymore Frag grenades.
"Enough with this standoff; get some frags over there!"
All of us then armed multiple Claymore Frags and threw them at the back of the shop.
"Fire in the hole!"
Everybody ducked their heads down…
*Beep* *Beep* *Beep*
*DUHNN!* *DUHNN!* *DUHNN!* *DUHNN!*
After the series of detonations, the shop entered a moment of silence as we all looked over towards the back, seeing that it's cleared.
I broke out of cover and cautiously approached the back of the shop with my Saber in hand, just to be sure…
As I got over to the turned over workbenches, blood, guts and huge chunks of human body parts splattered and riddled the back part of shop.
A workbench had moved right next to me. I looked behind it, to find a Phantom Task soldier crawling, stomach down. His left leg was dragging as blood flowed out from his mid section, kind of surprising that he survived those Claymore detonations.
I walked up next to the crawling solder.
I kicked him in the mid section to flip him over.
I jabbed my Saber's chainsaw bayonet into his chest.
Revved the chainsaw; messily mutilating him as bits and blood splatter everywhere, putting him out of his misery.
*Ergh!* *Ergh!* *Ee-er-ergh!*
After I shut down the chainsaw, I pulled it out while taking a quick scan around the maintenance shop before giving the all clear.
"You guys okay?"
All of us re-grouped and checked on each other for any injuries.
Other than a few cuts and bruises, we're all okay.
"Man, those guys practically rebuilt this whole thing."
Sideswipe took a good look around the shop, and he was right. Last time we were here, the ceiling had collapsed at the front, and the back walls of the shop were demolished.
"Heh, give them points for a fast rebuild…"
"So, what are we going to do about the corpses?"
"Don't worry about that, I got something that'll clean the place up."
Tezla got up and stretched.
He then walked towards a door on the side of the shop opposite to where we stormed in.
The door was kicked down and he went through it.
This room that he entered is the supply closet for the shop. Shelves were on all four walls throughout the room with another rack of shelves in the center.
"Guys, in here!"
All of us entered the room and found Tezla messing with a section of shelf on the far end of the room.
"Ah, there we go…"
The section of shelf Tezla was messing with lowered into the ground, revealing another small room with a high tech security door. It's almost like a safe's door that you find in a bank, except that this has an electrical lock next to its door.
Tezla walked up to the door as he pulled out a transparent circuit board from the case he had on his back.
"Just for insurance; it will not open without command keys."
He then put the circuit board in a slot next to the door and began his work as a keyboard console emerged below the electrical lock.
"It's the same failsafe I designed into the Wolf Pack and Satan's Halo."
Tezla continued on interacting with the keyboard console, before the doors slid opened.
"Come, on. It's an elevator that'll get us down there."
Without saying any words, we all got on and began to descend to the lab.
10:54 PM, June 21 2021. Tezla's Lab, Thunder Crash Base.
"Alright guys', standing in front of you is the vital asset that you'll need to take on Phantom Task."
I walked up to the suits of armor to have an up close look.
"So, these are it, huh?"
"Yes, the Silverback combat armor."
What we're doing right now is getting a look at Tezla's latest work that is the Silverback. But if one thing that I have to tell you, it's this; there are 4 Silverbacks. Now I know why he made 4 sparks.
They're standing up straight, but not at 'attention' that you normally see of a military personnel. And they're not all that big. Actually, they're slightly bigger than us, especially the biggest one that Scourge is looking at.
"You said this armor could match up to the IS, but it looks like a modern version of a knight's armor."
"It may look like that, Eric. But it's not the typical armor that you guys have been using."
"How is that?"
"Obviously, it's full-body armor. It protects all parts of the body, including the joints. Not only that, this armor is powered, thanks to the Silverback spark. It allows you to run faster, jump higher and hit harder than your enemies. You'll also be a lot more agile, and those are just the basic functions of it."
"Is flying one of the basic functions, too? Cause this is like a sitting duck if it can't when it's against an IS."
"For that, I have jet packs that are separate units from the combat armor. As for it being built in…"
A holographic image of a Silverback with a built-in jet pack deployed pops up in front of Tezla to show us.
"I have something in the works, but it's tricky. God only knows how Tabane managed to make an IS's flying capabilities."
Ratchet was looking at the case the silverback sparks are in on a work bench and looked back at the armor.
"Doc, you said that this armor is like an IS for guys, how?"
Tezla then had a real serious look on his face when Ratchet asked.
"Human genetics, Brian… I did some digging on how men and women are different from each other on a genetic level. The main thing I found is something that can determine a person's gender before birth; chromosomes, sex-determining chromosomes to be exact. And I applied that into the Silverbacks."
"There are two sex-determining chromosomes. So Doc, what you're saying is…"
"The Silverback will only react to those who have the specific sex-determining chromosome. And that is the Y-chromosome, the one chromosome that can only be found in males."
I then thought about the IS's flaw that only women can use an IS, which then got me into remembering something about that flaw.
"When Tabane formally introduced the IS, she mentioned that the fatal flaw of women being the only ones who can use it is an unintentional glitch."
Everyone turned their attention towards me, even Tezla.
"A glitch she said that she can fix herself. But even though she said it herself, that damn bitch didn't even bother to fix it and she doesn't even give a flying fuck about how society is now!"
Just thinking about that is enough to make my blood boil. Now putting that aside…
"But for the Silverback, its overall intentional, isn't it, Tezla?"
"Yes, Eric. I thought of it as the perfect way for getting back at Tabane for not fixing the IS's fatal flaw."
"Hah, making the Silverback's flaw the same as the IS's, but at the same time opposite and intentional. Talk about payback being a bitch."
Sideswipe jumped in as he began to take his Thunder Crash armor off.
Tezla then approached one of the Silverbacks, standing beside it and putting his hand on its left shoulder.
"And the name 'Silverback' is not just a random name that I chose or made. It means something else."
All of us had a puzzled look on our faces as we looked back at one another then back at Tezla.
Ratchet spoke out all of a sudden.
"An adult male gorilla…"
I then looked back at the armor before I asked.
"How does the name relate to an adult male gorilla?"
Tezla continued on, picking up from where Ratchet started.
"The name 'Silverback' is the name of an adult male gorilla, but not just any adult male gorilla. Listen, gorillas live in groups called 'troops' mainly comprising of multiple female gorillas, their infants, sometimes other male gorillas, and the Silverback; the dominate male gorilla of each troops."
"The Silverback is the center of the troop's attention, making all the decisions, mediating conflict, determining the movement of the group and taking responsibility for the safety and well-being of the troops. And it may not look like it, but gorillas are considered to be highly intelligent animals, but putting that aside."
"How are they named 'Silverback'?"
"A Silverback is named for the distinctive patch of silver hair on their back that comes with maturity, Eric. But as for how it's related to the combat armor; only adult male gorillas can become Silverbacks. Applying that to the combat armor's intentional flaw, that only guys can use it, the name 'Silverback' properly suits it."
Yeah, a proper name for backing up its intentional flaw to counteract the IS's.
"Alright, we managed to get the armor. So now what, Tezla?"
"Well, I actually have a press conference coming up next week, so I need to get to the sparks into their armor so they'll be ready."
"Do you need any help on the conference?"
"No, Eric. I'm only going to reveal the Silverback on a technical scale. The Demo will be for another time, I'm going to be needing you help on that."
Tezla then opened one of his tool boxes below a work bench.
"And besides, I'll be fine on working on the armor. You guys can rest if you want."
"Okay. But before we can do that, you said that you have something that can clean up the corpses up there, where is it?"
Before he went to work on the Silverbacks, he went to a storage area and brought out some cylinder tanks and some flamethrowers.
"You guys can use these incinerators. You don't have to worry about collateral burns; it'll only burn organics."
I picked up one of the flamethrowers, connected its hose to one of the tanks and strapped the tank on my back.
Sideswipe, Ratchet and Scourge went up to me, wondering what's going on upon seeing the tanks and flamethrowers.
"Even though we managed to get down here, we have to do some cleaning up there."
"Won't these cause unnecessary burns?"
Scourge is helping Sideswipe with his gas tank.
"Not with these, it'll only burn organics."
After a few minutes, all of us were ready for the clean up as Tezla's working on the Silverbacks.
Not wanting to bother Tezla, we went to the elevator without saying a word.
"Oh and Eric…"
Tezla called back to me.
"When I have the conference out of the way, I'll contact you guys."
"Yeah, just do whatever you can to get the Silverbacks done by then."
He then turned back to his work on the armor.
The door opened and closed as we got on and we began ascending back up to ground level.
"Alright, the fastest way to get this place cleaned up is for us to split up. Ratchet, Scourge, you guys take care of the mechanic shop. And Ratchet, while you're there, disarm those damn sentries so they won't be a bother again."
"Roger, boss man."
Ratchet acknowledge as he took one of his tools out of one of his back pockets in his armor.
"Sideswipe, you and I will handle the training facility and the maintenance shop. Not only that, we'll keep an eye out for any Phantom Task forces we've missed."
The elevator had stopped and the doors opened, indicating that we're on the ground level.
We walked out of the elevator, through the supply closet and into the maintenance shop. Seeing that the cost is clear, we than split up into pairs I assigned and began our clean up.
12:17 PM, June 28, 2021. Ishiyama High, Class 2-D. Odaiba, Japan.
Not much has happened and I haven't heard anything from Tezla since we got to his lab. Even though we managed help him get there, let's hope that he's able to complete the Silverback.
Its lunch time and everyone were either heading to the cafeteria, staying in their seats to eat their homemade lunch, or just simply hanging out in their little groups.
I sighed as I'm simply lounging around in my classroom until Sideswipe came in.
"Hey man, want to grab some grub?"
"Nah, I'm not really all that hungry right now."
"Yeah, now that you say it, the food here's not all that great."
Hopefully Tezla will get into contact with us soon, with what's going on at his end.
"Anything from Tezla?"
Sideswipe took a quick scan of the classroom to see that no one's paying any attention.
"I got a call from him just a few minutes ago, but I think it's best to wait until later."
"Yeah, we don't want to blow it…"
"Hey, did you guys hear about what was on the news?"
"Huh? Oh yeah, that! Turn the TV on, there's a new coverage."
We both heard a small group of students next to us talking about what seems to be a hot buzz today, while one was heading over to the TV to turn it on.
"There, is this it?"
"Yeah, that's it."
"...On today's news, what could possibly be the next generation IS, might not be an IS at all. Earlier this morning, a conference was held to unveil the 'Silverback'. The Silverback is created by Dr. Daniel Tezla, a former military scientist, and is supposedly said it could be a match up to the current generation ISes..."
From listening to the news on TV, it sounds like he managed to complete the armor.
He sure caused quite a stir. Making energy/plasma based firearms is one thing, but a whole combat armor is another. Especially that it could be a match up to the IS, theoretically.
"Do you guys really believe that?"
"As if something that small can take down a weapon that only women can use, except for Ichika Orimura..."
I switched my view from the TV to another group of students standing in front of the blackboard.
"You sure got that right."
"Yeah, something that can take down an IS is nothing but a mere fantasy."
I got up and approached the group while looking back and forth in between the TV and the group of students. Anger was slowly building up inside while they began to doubt about Tezla's work.
"Look at that armor; it won't last even a second against an IS."
I then took a quick look back at the TV and then to Sideswipe, standing behind me.
Sideswipe shook his head.
I picked up the student who spoke last by the collar of his uniform and held him up against the blackboard.
"Got something to say buddy?-!"
"What the hell!"
The room suddenly went silent, aside that the TV was still on. As I held the student up, I felt a hand on my right shoulder.
"Easy, Eric! Come on, set him down bro. They don't know."
The students began to whipser to eachother as they're watching.
Reluctantly, I slowly let the student back down and began walking out of the classroom with Sideswipe following.
The hallway's surprisingly empty as we were walking through it; perhaps this is the best time to talk about Tezla's call.
"Okay, Sideswipe. What did Tezla call for?"
"The Silverbacks are ready for use, and he wants to get us ready for a live demo sometime around next month."
"So he wants us to man them, huh?"
"Exactly, he wants to start our training on July 6. He would start it sooner, but he's got his hands full."
With the buzz from the introduction of the Silverback and a sudden call up from Tezla, it looks like we're going to have a busy summer vacation even before it begins.
10:03 AM, July 6 2021. Thunder Crash Base Outskirts.
We're making a patrol on top of a cliff to check if the area's all clear before we head towards Tezla's lab.
Armored up in our Thunder Crash armor, we were taking quick glances of the area around us as we walked in silence. So far, there's nothing but trees, bushes and foliage. But what really caught my attention, is the astounding view of the ocean down below. And I wasn't the only one who took note of this.
Sideswipe whistles in awe at the view.
"Damn, never thought that something as serene as this was this close to our old base."
"Always the shit closest to home that hits you the hardest."
I turned to my right to spot a beachhead in the distance.
"Oh shit... guys look at the beachhead."
All of them turned towards the indicated beachhead and Ratchet scans it while looking through a longbow scope.
"Great... they're girls on that beach..."
"But what are those huge figures those girls are standing next to?"
Scourge was looking down through the scope of his Bolt Rifle.
I tried to get a better look at the figures Scourge indicated, but I couldn't because I don't have longbow scope to look through like Ratchet does.
Speaking of which, seems he knows something about those figures.
Sideswipe primed his Saber as Ratchet replied.
"Those huge figures are actually ISes."
"Do they know that we're here?"
I took another look with the best I could.
"Well, we haven't seen anyone up here. So they must be clueless of our whereabouts."
Sideswipe was taking a look at the airspace above the beachhead as we're watching the girls below. (Not in that kind of way)
"Heads up, guys, something coming's our way."
"Ratchet, the scope…"
Ratchet hands the scope to me. I took a look through to see 6 bogies heading in our direction, each of them are in distinct colors; white, blue, magenta, orange, black and red.
I took the scope off my eye as they got closer to eye view; I finally made out what they were.
"Shit, ISes! Take cover."
All of us then bolted towards the nearest tree and bush to hide from the ISes.
"Turn on your camo and don't engage them, just let them pass."
I turned my camo on.
As the ISes got closer to us, they began to slow down and eventually came to a stop, floating above the ocean. As of now they're about 4 meters (13 Ft) from us.
I took a closer look at them to notice that they're checking on the red IS as though if there's something wrong with it.
I don't know what exactly they're doing, but I can kinda make out what they're saying.
"So, how does it feel, Houki?"
The white IS approached the red IS.
"It feels... right. I'm slowly starting to get used to the settings 'she' made."
Wait a second; I could've sworn that I heard a guy's voice coming from that white IS. Could it be...
I turned towards where the noise came from to see Sideswipe quivering a bit behind a bush. Then I looked back at the group of ISes to see the black IS slowly coming towards us.
Telza said in theory, that these camos can not only make us invisible, but can also hide our heat signatures, heartbeats as well as radio frequencies. Let's hope that it passes this test.
As the IS was floating right in front of us, all of us were literally still as statues. The IS was taking a closer look as if she's about to kill something that's going to pop out.
She looked closer and closer over where I'm hiding.
"Laura! Come on, we're continuing with our practical."
Seems that the orange IS called the black IS back to the group. As soon as she got back to the group, they took off towards the ocean.
As they got further and further away and eventually out of eyesight we deactivated our camo and broke out of cover.
Sideswipe and Scourge seemed to be relieved that they didn't spot us.
"Shit, that was close."
"Yeah, a little too close."
I got to hand it to Tezla, even though I've been helping him with his work while we were in Thunder Crash; he never ceases to amaze me.
While recovering from our near encounter, Ratchet looked off into the direction the group of ISes took off.
"Anybody noticed something about the pilot of the white IS that was in that group?"
"You're going to tell me."
"Ichika Orimura; he's the only guy in the world who can pilot an IS! Traitor!"
"It's nice to feel being backstabbed, huh? But we really don't know for sure if it was intentional or not."
I turned towards the opposite direction of the beachhead. We can bicker about this matter at another time because we got other important matters to attend to.
"Come on; let's head back to Tezla's lab. We got a lot of work to do…"
10:43 PM, June 26 2021. Unknown Location.
In a small dark mysterious room, there is a holographic screen that's the only source of light.
Sitting in front and closely watching is woman with a lush long blond hair dressed in a business suit.
What she's watching on the screen looks to be an action movie, but the truth is that she's actually watching a recorded video feed of a real firefight.
*DUHNN!* *DUHNN!* *DUHNN!* *DUHNN!*
She continued watching on with a slight interested look on her face.
The camera view is showing from a dead soldier's helmet camera; lying on the floor. In the camera shot was on a soldier crawling as a last desperate attempt of escape.
But then another person came up to him.
The person in the video feed is in his late teens despite his looks, and is wearing a bulky looking semi-full body combat armor that's gunmetal grey with blue lining/accents and blue glowing straps on the shoulders.
He's also wearing a black doo rag on his head, and his face was scared up; showing that he's seen combat despite being in his late teens.
On the right side of his face is one scar below his right eye cutting across above his cheek and a burnt mark has covered the majority of his right cheek. His left side had a huge scar cutting down at an angle across his left eye from the top of his eyebrow ending right next to his nose and a small cross shaped scar is on his left cheek.
He kicked the downed soldier in the mid section to flip him over.
Then he jabbed his rifle's serrated looking bayonet into the soldier's chest.
The bayonet was actually a chainsaw revving while in the soldier's chest.
*Ergh!* *Ergh!* *Ee-er-ergh!*
It messily mutilated him as bits and blood splattered everywhere. Some of the blood splattering on the camera lens.
After the chainsaw shut down, he took out the chainsaw bayonet as he looked around.
"You guys okay?"
The video then stopped after he spoke, fixated on the armored teenager.
The woman who's watching smirked.
"Looks like that things are going according to plan."
She chuckles while shutting down the holographic screen, leaving the room in complete darkness.
If you have any thoughts or feedback, please write them as reviews. Remember that I'll use them as referances for future chapters.