The Short Fic Weekly Challenge Thread!
View Single Post
07.10.2012 , 09:25 AM |
Trooper (w/ Sana and Aric) no spoilers
Sana grimaced as yet another file came through. Her own fault for letting the paperwork pile up while the team was on leave. She opened the file and swore under her breath. Like she didn't have better things to do than placate some bureaucrat in the middle of an election-induced crusade. Fricking politicians. The chime of a holocall was a welcome interruption.
She walked over and answered the call, the flickering image of her mate coming to life. The smile that had started across her face quickly fled at his ferocious expression. The image cut in and out, but from the way Aric kept looking around him, his meeting to consult with the forward base commanders about using sniper teams on Hoth had taken an unexpected turn.
"Aric? What's going on?"
"That you, Sana? .................... what's going on down here! Some genius colonel ............ ...............................whitefangs. Idiot ........... squadron killed ...............................Imps. ......................forward base is overrun .................................... pulled his men out ........... base completely unguarded. .........................ASAP, ................................. Argh! I have to go."
"Aric!" Sana pounded on the console, trying to reestablish the connection, but the light had turned a stubborn red. She leaned on the console for a second, letting her heart rate settle. The entire team was on leave, scattered across the sector. Sana tapped in a few commands, pulling up the day/night cycle and weather report for the small forward base Aric had been at last. A storm was rolling in and night was falling. Nothing moved at night on Hoth, the cold was a killer, literally. Add in a storm and nothing was going to be moving on that section of Hoth for quite awhile.
Making a decision, she quickly began to move around the cabin, pulling on her cold weather gear, the stims that would keep her going, and as much weaponry as she could carry and still be able to fight. She punched an autopilot command into the bridge console and then climbed in the escape pod. The rudimentary flight controls would let her land near the base in time to reach it before the storm hit or night fell - she hoped.
She pulled the release and then watched as the pod dropped down into Hoth's atmosphere, heading toward the line of darkness marching across the blinding white expanse. She hit the left thruster twice, checked the trajectory, and hit the right one once. Right on target. The slam of the pod into the snow jolted her hard even as strapped in as she was. She quickly unhooked herself, grabbed her gear and opened the pod door, blaster rifle at the ready. The base was just over the rise and beyond it the towering clouds and swirling gray of the incoming storm. Taking off at a ground-eating trot she scanned the landscape, watching for Imperials, wampas, and any of the other predatory creatures Hoth was home to. For once, they seemed to have forgone the possibility of a meal in favor of finding shelter from the storm - smart critters.
The lights from the base blinked against the growing darkness, but there was no movement, no soldiers or droids patrolling. The place looked deserted as the icy wind blasted into her face, heralding the storm's leading edge. Sana steeled herself. If Aric was there, she'd get him out. And if he wasn't...she took a deep shuddering breath and banished the thought, focusing on what she needed to do.
Using the snow drifts as cover, she silently loped along the edge of the base, through the punishing wind and swirling snow, reaching the blast doors. Hoping the door codes hadn't been changed, she quickly tapped in her security clearance and breathed a sigh of relief as they slid open; she slipped inside and closed the doors. The huge cavernous space echoed even the faint sounds she made as she searched the area. There was work still sitting on desks, tactical maps blinking on displays, but it looked like some files had been taken in a rush.
A faint sound jerked her head up. She quietly crossed to the small boardroom where the noise had come from. The door was shut, sealed, but her code worked its magic and it slid open. Using the doorframe as cover she peered in and breathed a huge sigh of relief at the sight of Aric, alive, armed, and apparently unharmed, along with a young soldier who had one arm in a sling and a blaster in the other hand. Aric's aim was steady as he pointed his blaster at the door; the young soldier's not so much. What Aric was doing with a pair of whitefang cubs curled up on him...well...
"You planning to shoot me?" Sana asked her mate with a raised eyebrow.
Aric slid his blaster back into his side holster. "Put down that weapon, son," he said to the young man, "Sana, meet Sergeant Rory Golbane, late of Colonel Yarren's command. Golbane, this is Major Sana Kaarde, CO of Havoc Squad."
"G-good to meet you, sir," Golbane stuttered. He slumped against a wall on a makeshift pallet, clearly exhausted.
"Looks like you had a long day, young man," Sana said, eyeing Golbane, "get some sleep if you can, we won't be moving till this storm clears."
Golbane nodded and curled up, pulling a blanket almost over his head.
"What are you doing here?" Aric asked her, as she walked over to sit next to him, "I told you I'd be back ASAP."
"Your message...it kept breaking up. Sounded like you were in trouble." She looked around the room, taking in the shredded furniture and teeth marks...and the stacks of small cages where dozens of whitefang cubs slept, curled into balls. "Looks like I was right." Sana pulled one of the cubs off his lap and settled it on her own, the little body nearly boneless in sleep. "What happened here?" she whispered, as she petted the tiny predator.
"Colonel Yarren needs to be courtmartialed," Aric growled, "He lost almost his entire squadron trying to capture adult whitefangs. Had some harebrained idea about training them, stars knows where he got it. When I got here, it was pretty clear that something was up - he kept making excuses for how thin the numbers were. And then Golbane here came to me, told me about the losses...that's when things got bad. I got back from scouting some locations in the local area and found Golbane with a hole in him and the rest of the place deserted. Yarren had cleared out his people, who knows where."
"We'll find him," Sana said.
"So what is this?" she asked, waving at the room and its furry inhabitants.
"Golbane tells me that when capturing the adults got too dangerous, they started killing them and taking the cubs. Yarren wanted to raise them, prove he was right about training. I'm going to try calling the Coruscant Zoo when the storm clears, see if they'll take them."
"So why are these ones out?" Sana asked, running a finger down the super soft white pelt.
Aric looked uncomfortable, "Well, they, uh...they're used to being with their mother, and..."
Sana grinned at him, trying not to laugh. "Were they crying?"
Aric glared at her. She giggled, "You always were a sucker for babies."
"I..." he scowled.
Sana leaned her head on his shoulder. "You always heard Esma before I did."
"Cathar just have good hearing," he grumbled, but he put his arm around her, tucking her into his side.
"And good hearts," she said patting his chest and looking up at him with a grin, "I love you."
"I love you too," he said, kissing her forehead. Then he pulled back and looked at her with a frown. "How did you get here so fast anyway?"
"WHAT????" Golbane and a couple of the cubs blinked and looked over at him.
She grinned at him as she shrugged, "Got me here, didn't it?"
"Damn it, woman, this is why I keep finding gray hairs in my fur!"
Sana kissed him and winked, "It's okay, I'll still love you, gray fur and all."
He grumbled and tucked her in tighter against him. The two of them settled in to wait out the storm.
For those of you who have done Imp Hoth, you know where the dear old colonel got the idea for training whitefangs, lol.
aren't you a little short for a stormtrooper?
My Name is Solomon Crae
The Man in the Box