(Author's Note: This story is a crossover between the worlds of Halo and Pokémon. Dur. Anyway, there might be like, language 'n' stuff, so you've been warned. Also: this story is based on a comic I'm making, so if you want to see the whole thing (all whopping four pages of it at the current moment, :-/ hit up the link in my signature. An additional note: the written story might contradict the comic and vice versa. I am not the most consistent person.)
When the war with the Covenant ended, we didn't rightly know what to do with ourselves. "We" being Wash and me. Corporal Alvin 'Wash' Washington is my best friend; we both joined the UNSC together shortly after the battle of Mombasa, but neither of us actually saw any action. By the time we graduated from basic training, the Master Chief had effectively ended the war and gone and gotten himself missing in action. I'm Lance Corporal Sean McIntyre. Everyone just calls me Mac. Wash and I both grew up in Kenya, though we only met during 'basic.
I still remember the day that that Covenant ship jumped to Slipspace above Mombasa; even though Kenya's ten hours away, the blast shattered half the windows in the city. Our plumbing broke; we later found out the foundation itself had moved and we had to move. I was fourteen years old at the time and all I could think about was how much I wanted to join the UNSC and give those split-lipped bastards the worst day imaginable.
Thinks got pretty bad for a while; the UNSC asked for volunteers, desperate to turn the tide with the Covenant sitting on our doorstep. I rushed to the recruiter's office and signed away the next four years of my life. Thanks to the Emergency Defense Act, I got through and into the service, with only a permanent note in my record that I was legally underage but had been apprised of my legal rights and obligations.
Basic training was Hell; days without sleep, drill instructors screaming in my face, terrible, bland food and blisters on my feet. I'd never been particularly spiritual; my family's a bunch of lapsed Catholics and I hadn't been to church since I was eight. Still though, I remember the first time I went to chapel during 'basic. I cried like a baby all through the service and threw up later that night when it really hit me for the first time that what we were doing was going to get us all killed.
As to that, most of us are still alive. Four of us did die in an unfortunate accident after we graduated; they were assigned to 9th Comm and their Pelican circled in over the Sea of Japan. Another died a year later after having a mental breakdown following the end of the war. I guess being a Marine without a purpose was too much for him. Wash and I are both okay though; we've been together for the last two tours of duty, first on Luna Base and then assisting with the re-founding of Reach. The planet's come a long way from the official video from the UNSCDF feeds. Charred, glassed hell-scape is now bristling with scraggly weeds and the first successfully transplanted plant-life. The native Moa population is officially extinct, but the eggheads are still trying to re-start the breeding program. Reach was a sobering post; to work under those back-breaking conditions trying to bring life back to a crisped husk that so many other soldiers gave their lives to defend... frankly it still haunts me to this day.
Now, Wash and I have officially been processed through the UNSC Marines and are part of the Inactive Reserves; we've done our duty and we just want to retire to some new colony world, maybe go into business together; Wash has always had some amazing ideas about transplanted Earth crops on terraformed worlds. Truth be told, the guy was always too smart to be a grunt, but he knew that was where the action was, so he signed on to be a Field Radio Operator, same as me. Action; heh. That's kind of funny, considering the most action we ever saw was getting our butts kicked together behind a bar on Reach by a couple of drunk ODSTs two years ago.
Anyway, the ship we're on now is taking us to a new colony world, opened up to us graciously by the newly-formed Sangheili Alliance; our old enemies have now become out partners in trade and have agreed to open their shipping lanes to us for colonization. Thanks to cooperative sharing of slip-drive technology, we can now reach the stars a heck of a lot faster than ever before; it only took us four months to get out here, halfway across the known universe from our original home. If we look at the backward-facing 'scopes mounted on the outer hull, we can just make out our solar system, just a single pinprick of light in a sea of stars.
The new world we're going to has been an Earth colony now for the last year and a half; serious problems plague the place though. Constant seismic activity, crazy tales of strange alien animals running amok all over the place, and the native foliage seems to be choking out the colonists' attempts at growing human food there. Wash and I were able to get berthings to this particular world because of Wash's horticultural studies; I'm very grateful they agreed to let me come along with him. Since I don't have any sort of scientific leanings of my own, when we get there I'll be assigned to the local peacekeeping force; that's fine by me, really. I don't want to say I'm nothing but a stupid grunt, but holding a weapon does come more naturally to me than holding a microscope or even a shovel.
They tell us the new world is named 'Terraquea,' but the Sangheili who discovered it first named it... well, unpronounceably, to be honest. The closest I can come to pronouncing it is something like 'Arceus' or something like that. The official logs state that it was a Jiralhanae world before the Covenant sent the Sangheili to subjugate them. Anyway, that's not important; what is important is that's our new home.
And I can't wait to get a good look around.
20th March 2012, 09:13 PM
Re: Colony Drop (A Halo/Pokémon Crossover)
These older frigates are wonderful machines; after the war, after the trade agreements with the Sangheili, these old babies were retrofitted with the newer, faster engines. The new ships of the line have the enhancements fully integrated from the initial build, but the older models? They've got character. You could swear you haven't even left the dock on the newer ships it's so smooth. When a War-era frigate gets underway? You know it.
Currently we're descending through Terraquea's ionosphere on our way to planetfall; it only takes about seventy seconds to break through the upper layers, but those seventy seconds are the longest seventy seconds of your life if you've never done it before. Most of the passengers are panicky, strapped in their crash seats. Some of them whimper, pray prayers to unknown gods. Some of them are calmer than others; they've been on ships descending through this electronic haze before. They know the best way to deal with it is to take deep breaths, pushing their breath out harder than they took it in to calm their heartrate.
I won't lie, I was just as panicked the first time I ever made planetfall; that was the first time I realized that I never wanted to sign up for the ODST. When you hit the ionosphere, the metal of the ship attracts all of the electronic interference across the spectrum a planet generates. To those inside the ship, it's something you never forget: the sounds of an electronically tortured chorus in Hell, squealing, squawking out across the audible spectrum.
Wash and I take perverse pleasure walking up and down the aisles between the passengers while they cling to their harnesses. Walking in what's basically a freefall is actually not as hard as you might think once you've done it ten or so times. Wash is actually eating a sandwich; I'll be damned if I know where the hell he even got it from, but it's pretty fun to watch the passengers turn green in waves as he strolls past.
Finally we're through the ionosphere and enter the stratosphere with a deafening roar. Several of the passengers actually shriek out loud, but the inertial dampeners have already kicked in by the time they realize they're not dead. I catch Wash's eye and he winks at me, barely suppressing his laughter at the entire situation.
That's when the hull plating on the starboard side of the passenger area suddenly glows white-hot and peels away like burning paper. Luckily the ship's shields are up so we're protected from explosive decompression. Even with that and the inertial dampeners, Wash and I are thrown off our feet. I slam into a bulkhead hard enough to taste blood and Wash ricochets off of a row of passengers. Dimly, over my ringing ears, I can hear the ship's alarm intoning in three languages that we've suffered a hull breach; for a split second I swear I see a gigantic flaming bird through the hole, clearly glowing balefully against the dark background of the upper atmosphere. Then I taste some more blood and don't remember anything else.