F Squad's first mission on the forest planet of Nokoi Mindar is not going very well. With Athen wounded, and a heavy storm rolling in, the three Air Drop Shock Commandos bunker down for a long night, and await rescue in the morning.Chapter 2
Captain Ratay awoke slowly. It was very quiet, and suddenly there was a sound of movement behind him.
Instinctively, Ratay grabbed for his rifle and quickly began to roll over...
...only to find Corporal Athen, who had only been wounded the night before, propped up in the dirt with a bandage cut from his kama wrapped around his wounded shoulder.
"Well, I sure hope somebody got a fine night's sleep," Athen joked. "I thought you'd never wake up."
"How...How long was I out?" Ratay said groggily. Ratay shook his head and popped some wake-up stims into his mouth in an attempt to bring himself fully alert.
"Oh, about 8 hours, I think."
"Wait, where's Corporal Kellar?"
Athen leaned back and motioned to a group of trees behind him. "He went back there about 15 minutes ago." "Said he was going to check out some anomaly he picked up on his radar."
"Well, I guess I should radio in to Command to request a Gunship before droids stat to wonder what happened to their sniper."
Ratay began to punch in a sereis of commands on his wrist comlink and was about to put in the patch when Kellar emerged from the trees.
"No need to put that patch in sir!" Kellar shouted from across the field. "I Think I found something that can get us outta here no problem!"
Ratay stood up and then helped Athen stand.
"How's your arm, Corporal?"
"I can still move it, but it hurts like hell, Captain."
"Understood. Well, let's go see what Kellar is so excited about."
Ratay and Athen caught up with Kellar and followed him into a dense group of trees. There wasn't any groundcover here, and Ratay was suprised to find that it was considerably darker in this forest than it was out in the field.
"It's just a little bit farther, Captain," Kellar said assuringly. "It' just in this clearing up ahead."
Kellar walked up the huge metal monstrosity and leaned his arm up againsts it.
"What the hell is this, Corporal?" Ratay demanded.
"It seems that it's a prototype fighter, Captain. I heard that we were experimenting with new starfighters but I never thought they made any. I checked out the cockpit and its model number read ARC-150."
"Will it fly? Command's about 15 clicks north of here." Ratay asked.
"Well, it has some engine damage and a hit to the nose, but the engines do start. It couldn't of been here long, I just wonder why it's here. It also is lacking an astromech, so one of use would have to fly it manually. I'm not much of a pilot, but-"
"I can fly it," Athen spoke up. "I had some pretty extensive pilot training back on Kamino, and I'm pretty confident that even with this arm I could still keep this bird up in the air."
"Well, it's settled then. I'll go back out into the field to radio Command. Kellar, follow me. Athen you make any neccesray repairs and put this thing back down in the field."
Ratay walked back into the field and radioed Command in. "This is F Squad to Command. Do you copy?"
"Roger F Squad, this is Command. Ratay, is that you?" "You're coming pretty weak, change you signal frequency."
Ratay made some adjustments to his wrist comlink. "That any clearer?"
"Crystal. Are you ready for us to dispatch the Gunship?"
"Negative, we have found a still operable fighter around here. The model reads ARC-150."
"There's no way you'll make it back alone in some unarmed dilapidated fighter."
"Well, is there any other birds in our vicinity?" Ratay asked, beginning to sound frustrated.
"Actually, Master Koon is in the area. I'll radio him and tell him to escort your fighter back to base. Just send me your coordinates and I'll get it done."
"Roger Command, cooridinates on their way. F Squad out." Ratay sent their cooridinates and terminated the link.
Athen and Kellar were already in their seats in the ARC. "Man, when is Master Koon gonna get here? My arm's killing me."
"Hey, just chill. I'm sure he's on his way, just be patient. The medics'll fix you up as soon as we get back." Kellar scanned the skies for any sign of the Jedi's starfighter.
"There he is," Ratay said, pointing up into the azure sky at a green gray Starfighter coming in for a landing.
The fighter put down smootly in the level plains of Nokoi Mindar. The canopy opend and suddenly a green skinned Kel Dor Jedi in full combat dress was leaning on his fighter.
"Master Arador Koon at your service," the Jedi said jovially. "I understand you need an escort." The Jedi hopped out of his vehicle and made his way to the ARC.
"Yes, sir, we were trapped here for the night and we found this fighter in the forest," Ratay spoke.
"Well, it looks like they finally started making the new ARCS," Koon said thoughtfully. "It's about time," he added.
"Sir, you know this ship?" Ratay said with a questioning tone.
"Of couse, Captain. This is the new space figher and ground fighter for the Republic. It's still in the prototype phase, but I think that we'll see mass production soon. I never knew that we had some on Nokoi Mindar, though. I wonder why," Koon's voice trailed off.
"Well, we might as well be going, then!" Koon walked back to his ship.
"Just trail behind me, it's a short flight back to base," Koon said, and jumped back into his cockpit.
Ratay jumped into the rear gunner postition in the ARC and took a long look at the area that almost claimed his squad's life. He was glad to be going back to Command, where meter thick anti-artillery armor stood between him and the Speratists.
He closed his hatch door. "Okay, we're all ready to go," he said.
"Roger that, Captain," Athen said from the pilot's seat." "Kellar?"
"I'm a-okay, Athen. Let's just get the hell out of here!"
The ARC hovered off the field for a few seconds, and quickly followed the Jedi's starfighter into the sky.
TO BE CONTINUED....
Well, I tried to make it longer, and most of the shots were taken vertically to help with consistency. I hope you like it. LMK what you think, all comments are appreciated. Thanks for looking.