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Until The End: Part 14

On the far-flung planet of Hayveon Blaze, a plucky army commander, is fighting a seemingly hopeless battle.  In a universe where empires span solar systems, a great war has split the galaxy into three. UCEF, the Union of Creature Energy Force, is an alliance of aliens fighting for freedom and justice. But set against the Cosmaratic Empire and the Barrens, an empire with mind-controlled citizens, UCEF must achieve the impossible in order to win peace.

Part 14

Blaze swung his gun in an arc, panning it across the advancing Barrens and unleashing a punishing hail of energy bolts. He smiled in satisfaction as he saw his targets fall, scythed down like wheat before a farmer’s blade. Almost instantly Barren gunners returned fire; Blaze’s visor registered at least ten hostiles now shooting at him. His instincts told him to duck, but he knew he did not need to now.

A trio of blasts caught him full on in the chest, but simply dissipated in blue flashes against his armour with nothing but a crackle of energy on metal. The display to the right of his visor indicated no damage whatsoever.

“You’ll have to do better than that!” Blaze’s voice yelled defiantly, booming out from the speaker. The impact of being shot had not even moved him. In response he brought his gun to bear, lining up the sights with the Barrens; a red crosshair on his visor indicated where his weapon was pointing. Cheers erupted from the UCEF defenders, their vigour rekindled at the sight of the hulking metal warrior laying waste to their enemies.

In between shooting Blaze assessed the situation. The Barrens had reached the fourth trench and were hunkered down in it, with a small section of open ground between them and the bastion. They seemed to be waiting for their heavy support to arrive before they made a move on the gate. Various tanks and armoured vehicles were still picking their way across the battlefield, for the Barrens were being forced to create bridges over the trenches before they could move their tanks any nearer. The devastation wrought by Blaze’s bombing of the front line trenches had ensured it would not be easy for them to advance. For now it seemed the Barrens were content to simply wait for the bulk of their forces to arrive, whilst their frontline troops harried the UCEF defenders. By his reckoning Blaze estimated most of the Barren’s machinery would reach the bastion in five to ten minutes. That they would then breach the gate with it he had no doubt.

“What’s the plan sir?” R318 asked, firing through a gun port below Blaze.

“Target sergeants and squad leaders try…” there was a roar of energy gunfire “…to break their chain of command,” Blaze replied as he blasted his energy cannon at a leader foolish enough to stick his head out of one of the trenches for too long.

“Ahh yes… good idea! Boys, target their leaders!” R318 shouted over the din of energy discharge and the boom of falling shells; although the latter was diminishing as the Barrens did not want to risk missing and hitting their own.

Blaze stomped along the walkway, moved up to a firing step, emptied the charge on his gun, stepped back down to recharge and then repeated the process. He knew eventually the Barrens would bring a heavy weapon of some kind to bear in an attempt to take him down, so he did not wish to stay still for too long. For all the good it did them the Barrens still peppered him with rifle blasts, but it was akin to throwing rocks at a spaceship’s hull. He simply shrugged off the impacts as if they were naught but irritating flies.

A thundering explosion shook Blaze and the walkway disappeared in a bright blue flash. Numerous Dinos were thrown off their paws and hurtling bits of debris bounced off Blaze’s armour. Peering through the smoke Blaze saw a section of the parapet wall had been blown away by a huge energy blast. Stomping into the break in the defensive wall Blaze hastily pulled debris off a Dino who had been behind it. He hurled chunks of concmetal, the reinforced concrete-metal composite, off the Dino swiftly freeing him. Pulling the last piece off he gently rolled the Dino over onto his back. Blaze’s gaze fell upon the Dino’s slightly blackened face, his eyes were shut and his ears limp.

“Rest my friend,” Blaze’s voice whispered sadly blinking away tears, every fallen Dino was a brother lost. Straightening up again he turned his attention to the cause of the blast, a Barren tank with a heavy mounted energy gun was lining up for a shot at him. Blaze threw himself sideways just as the tank fired, the powerful blue energy blast whistling past a whiskers breadth away. Blaze landed with a crash of metal and armour that shook the walkway. Clambering back up his eyes scanned the various Dinos along the defences, most of whom were still picking themselves up after the first blast.

“Trooper, here! Bring that tank down!” Blaze ordered a Dino carrying an energy lance, an anti-tank gun that fired a single powerful energy blast, capable of punching through the toughest armour.

“Yes sir!” The Dino replied without hesitation.

“I’ll cover for you!” Blaze’s voice boomed, he moved to the breach in the parapet wall to make himself a target. Standing as he was on top of the bastion wall about five metres above the ground he stood out like a sore thumb. The rest of the Dinos were hiding behind the second smaller parapet wall that ran along the walkway. The Barrens obliged almost instantly, showering him with energy blasts. Naturally Blaze returned the favour, firing a few shots at the tank as well so as to keep its gunners busy. Doubtless they would be preparing for another shot at him… hopefully they would not get the chance.

Blaze staggered as a stronger energy blast struck his shoulder plate with a noise that made his ears ring; he would have to duck out of sight in a second.

With a thunderous static discharge a lancing green blast shot from the Dino gunner to his left and struck the tanks turret full on. The blast went clean through blowing the turret to pieces, before punching into the rear of the tank, which presently detonated in a fiery but satisfying explosion.

“One down… many more to go.”

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Look out for Part 15 of Matthews Gill’s story!