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Bravo Team - 1

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Note: In case you missed it, there's a prologue to this story. You can find a link to it in the index.


Chapter 1 – Puzzling Discoveries


The bulkhead door lowered with a hissing noise, letting out compressed air. William Sanders, Sergeant in the US Army Rangers, stepped out with his chaingun at the ready.

He was greeted by thick silence, boring grey walls dotted with dirt of questionable origin, breathable air that felt metallic and a foreboding darkness.

“Seems like there’s no welcoming party,” he mumbled dryly.

He stepped into the empty hangar. He looked around again. The place gave him the creeps.

Sanders was a tall, muscular man in his mid-thirties. He had blond, crew cut hair and his slightly wrinkled face made him look older than he was. Behind him, Corporal McGee appeared in the airlock carrying a shotgun in his hands. Neither of the two soldiers was happy about working together. Sanders was used to be in a group of Rangers and was not pleased to work with a guy from a different unit – especially not from a different country. The English McGee on his part could easily feel Sanders’ dislike about working with him and took it as a sign of arrogance towards him. Just because America had historically been the most powerful nation of the two countries since the twentieth century until the last twenty years, that should be no reason to undermine his skills as a soldier. McGee hated arrogant people. Arrogant people like the UAC or FCE top brass.

“Ok, let’s do this quick!” Sanders snarled at McGee. “We both want to get this over with as soon as possible!”

“Fine,” McGee replied and quickly added:
“So what are we waiting for?”

Sanders mumbled something incoherent and went up to the heavy bulkhead door at the end of the darkened hangar. Both commandos turned on their flashlights that they had mounted on their space combat helmets.
“Crap, it’s got code!” the tall American grunted and fiddled with one of the bags in his utility belt until he dragged out a small handheld device. Punching in a command on the handheld computer, he pointed it towards the lock and waited a brief time when a loud clank echoed throughout the otherwise quiet hangar. The device had hacked the code and forced the lock open. The huge door slid open with a scurrying noise, accompanied by a horrible whine.

Inside were several hallways branching off in different directions – each of them darker than the Hangar and all radiated a deathlike, uninviting silence.

McGee called the rest of the team over radio and reported that the coast seemed clear whereupon the whole team came out of the ship and milled around behind the two soldiers.
Just like a bunch of confused kids, McGee thought sourly.

“Who’s got the layout of the base?” McGee asked.

“Roy’s got the map,” Sarah Blaine, replied with a casual demeanour. The tall, red-haired Canadian was Bravo Team’s Astrophysicist and quite a beauty.

Roy Carpenter went up to McGee. He was a short, slightly fat man in his early fifties, but he was remarkably strong. He was the team’s tech – the guy whose job it was to repair damaged devices ranging from the simplest mechanical devices, to computers, to highly advanced robotics. He also carried the field computer with a computerized map of the entire Mars base. Upon checking the map, McGee realized for the first time, just how huge this installation was. And this was only one of several buildings on this planet, albeit it was also the largest by far.

Roy punched in a few commands on the computer and the map of the entire building was zoomed down to just the area around the hangar.

“The Data Archive is the hallway leading straight ahead...” Roy started but was cut off by Sanders’ cold voice.
“We’re heading for the Main Control room in the Command and Control Center”
The small tech fidgeted nervously with his computer.
“Ok...” he replied slowly, slightly unnerved by the commando’s harsh attitude.

“We’re going to the right then,” he then urged.
“Fine, now let’s move” Sanders grunted and stepped into the Dark.

The rest of Bravo Team consisting of SAS Corporal Nigel McGee, Technician Roy Carpenter, Astrophysicist Sarah Blaine, Computer Specialist Jill Kennedy and Medic Ronnie Levine went after US Ranger William Sanders. Bravo Team was heading into the unknown.

The door slid open with a horrible hydraulic whine. The commandos entered first with their weapons.
“Why the Hell are you troops so damn paranoid?” Roy asked slightly annoyed. McGee gave him an annoyed glare and opened his mouth wanting to tell the little man to “shut the fuck up”, but Sanders replied in a cool, emotionless voice as if he was a computer.
“We don’t know exactly what was going on up here, remember?” There was something in Sanders’ voice and demeanour that made the small man swallow hard.
“Don’t forget that according to those logs found in UAC computers, the HQ lost contact with Mars shortly before the invasion” Jill added behind the rest of the team. “And that stinks, to put it lightly”

It seemed like these comments made a bell ring for Roy, for he went completely silent.

The two soldiers looked around. McGee briefly thought out loud. “Computers, control panels – Kennedy, Carpenter, I think you’ve got a job”
“Yes Sir!” Jill replied sarcastically and mockingly saluted the Briton while walking past the SAS operative. “Oh and by the way...” she added, looking over her shoulder at the scowling McGee.
“My name is Jill – cut that army crap!”

McGee’s scowl transformed into a hearty smile and he chuckled. “As you wish…Ma’am”

“Shut up smartass” Jill mused as she examined the computers.
“So, when’s the wedding for you two?” Sanders chuckled, showing a bit of human personality for the first time. Jill ignored him, while McGee winked at the American.

The computers seemed to be operable and she turned one on. A blinking text notified her that the computer’s own power supply was activated due to main power supply failure. She assumed that the base’s power generators had shut down due to lack of maintenance.
It didn’t take long before she was lost in her own world – the world of computers. All the way from Earth, she had felt strangely lonely and uneasy, but now she was perfectly comfortable, tapping her fingers on icons and advanced code on the screen that most people didn’t understand what meant. In the meantime, Roy Carpenter began checking the equipment.

About an hour passed when Jill suddenly found something. She opened a file called ‘Proj59.log’.

A computer log was displayed. It was rather long, but the first bit read:

Secret Project No. 59
Project Overseer: Col. Elliot Timothy Hauser
Project Chief Coordinator: Peter Winston, Chief Scientist

Feb 5, 2142: Project 59 has finally become a reality. The construction teams have been busy reworking areas within the Research Facilities on Phobos and Deimos in order to have the machinery working. The project has been classified ‘Black’.”

Jill knew that the classification ‘Black’ was the absolute most top secret classification within the entire UAC. This was definitely unusual. The ‘Black’ classification, meant that not even the higher ranking personnel within the UAC itself were allowed to know even the slightest detail about the project, except for those specially involved in it. This meant that the project had a great deal of military interest involved in it. She read on. Most of it was rather uninteresting and mostly plain routine log comments, but then she found something interesting.

”October 17, 2144: First report of success has arrived from Deimos! They have carried out Test BZ023 with success. Colonel Hauser has ordered the initiation of Phase Three.”

Reading on, she soon came to a log entry that changed into something rather grim.

”March 1, 2145: Disaster! We are still at Test CZ006 and we have not got any further. We have not had a single stroke of good luck since Test BZ023. Like the other test subjects, latest Test subject TS67 PFC Samuel Tanner disappeared. The situation is intolerable. So far, we have nine men missing and we have no idea where they are. Furthermore, the Management has constantly reminded us that absolutely no information must be given to any of the Army personnel stationed at the base, so we cannot even tell the soldiers why their comrades still have not returned from duty on Phobos.”

A few lines down came the next notable part:

”April 27, 2145: The project has been put on hold after the latest terrible incident. All hope of the missing human test subjects returning to us alive is gone! The Colonel has reluctantly given in to the pleas of the Chief Scientist, but we are still not allowed to tell anything. The Army personnel is growing increasingly dissatisfied about the lack of information in regards to the missing soldiers. We still have to reassure them and tell them that their comrades are not allowed to leave Phobos. I am worried about how we are going to tell them that their comrades died under strange circumstances”

However strange these entries were, the last two entries were really mysterious:

”May 19, 2145: Something terrible has happened on Phobos and Deimos! Red alert! All troops sent to Phobos. Deimos has disappeared from the radar screens. Last message from Phobos mostly incoherent, but bits of information revealed the urgent need for reinforcements.”

May 20, 2146: Oh my God! They are here! We must evacuate, they arrived in military landing pods, we are doomed, doo…<Fatal system error...log system deactivated...>”

Four faces stared at the screen.

“What the Hell?” McGee muttered hinting surprise.
“What do you make of it Jill?” Sanders asked the brunette in front of the computer screen.

She narrowed her eyes and stared grimly at the screen.
“Well...” She began hesitantly, pausing and thinking out loud before she continued.
“They had a really top secret project going on Phobos and it was definitely also linked to Deimos somehow...it was so secret that even the troops stationed at the base were not given any info whatsoever...” She thought out loud and scrutinized the log for a while. Sanders let out a low whistle. It annoyed Jill. Most of the log entries made very little sense. She tried again.

“They used human subjects for this experiment whatever it was...but then it says that they...vanished? This doesn’t make sense!”
“Go on” Sanders implored.
“Not an awful lot more really – something went wrong, something so bad that they sent in the troops...then Mars itself came under attack, but...”
She paused. “Who would attack them?”
McGee bit his lip. “I smell trouble here” He grunted. “Big time trouble!”

“Let me try and look around a bit more” Jill told them and Sanders stretched out his hand in a forthcoming gesture, allowing her to continue. But another fifteen minutes passed and Jill had gone through the entire log file directory. There was nothing left to look at.
“Maybe they hid some files” Roy suggested.
“The file I checked before was hidden Roy” Jill replied.
“I think the best way to find out what happened is to go to Phobos” Jill then suggested after a bit of thinking.
“Phobos?” Sanders asked.
“Yeah duder, Phobos!” McGee replied. “Phobos as in Fear – and the lady’s request seems reasonable enough – the best chance of gathering intelligence would be to check out the place where they carried out the project. Simple”
Sanders gave him a long look, then made a cursory nod, before turning his radio’s frequency on to the ship.

“Coburn, fire up the ship as soon as we get on board! We’re heading for Phobos!”


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Dude, that frazzin' rocked. If there's more I can't wait to see it and/or find it elsewhere in this Board . . . Oh, yeah, in case you haven't noticed, yeah I'm new; just signed up a half-hour ago, heh. Reading all the fanfics and looking at all the pretty pictures got me goin'.

Anyway . . . Few questions, if I may? Is this Jill in your story the same Jill Mister AbHugh and Linaweaver wrote in their second novela? And is this Sanders person of some relation to Arlene or was it just a cool last name you couldn't do without?

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Guardian said:

If there's more I can't wait to see it and/or find it elsewhere in this Board . . . Oh, yeah, in case you haven't noticed, yeah I'm new; just signed up a half-hour ago, heh. Reading all the fanfics and looking at all the pretty pictures got me goin'.

Anyway . . . Few questions, if I may? Is this Jill in your story the same Jill Mister AbHugh and Linaweaver wrote in their second novela? And is this Sanders person of some relation to Arlene or was it just a cool last name you couldn't do without?

Firstly, you can find all my stories and (hopefully) most if not all of everyone else's stories on this board (I only link to stories I think are remotely worth reading) - emjoy what you may find :-)

Secondly, nope, Jill is no relation to Jill Lovelace from the Novels and Bill Sanders is by no means a relation to Arlene Sanders. I admit, that I picked the name "Sanders" from the novels, but since I abhor the Novels (that's my personal opinion), the last thing I would do would be to link my stories to the story in the novels.

Though I admit, that I can be inspired by the novels, but that's it really.

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Ahh thanks fer the clarifications. I've seen some spiffy sutff here already . . . And some not so spiffy stuff, but hey, to each 'is own, right? I'll just steer clear of some certain topics . . . ;)

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