[url=https://www.bungie.net/en/Forum/Post/257258038/0/0]Link to Chapter 3, Part 3[/url]
[spoiler]All chapters of the War of Lies will be linked to the [url=https://www.bungie.net/en/Forum/Post/257167399/0/0]Table of Contents[/url] as they are posted every Monday[/spoiler]
“You know, I expected it to take longer,” Shrowder announced to me.
“He would’ve drawn it out if we had more time,” I pointed out.
“The wolf playing with his food,” Shrowder guffawed.
Swiftly crossing the sands to join Drip, we peered into the tunnel cautiously before entering. Drip turned his Stealth Skin back on and moved ahead with Shrowder on his heels. I kept a slower pace with my gun raised at the ready, constantly checking behind me to make sure no one followed us. I passed a few dead bodies while following the descending slope before finding my companions at a small turn, peeking around the rough stone and discussing their strategy.
“I’m telling you, they’ll spot you before you can get close enough,” Shrowder was saying.
“Drixaas fast,” the Fallen argued.
“Not as fast as bullets,” Shrowder responded, “Just let me do this, okay?”
Drip growled in frustration, but backed down and motioned for the infiltrator to take the lead. Satisfied, Shrowder took a few steps back from the corner and nodded confidently at me as I stepped past him to get next to Drip.
“Alright…” Shrowder shook out his hands and rolled his shoulders, then walked casually around the bend, calling out to whoever was over there, “Friendly! Do y’all know what’s going-“
I was able to see just enough to watch Shrowder flick his arm out once and then spin in a sidestep before flinging both arms out. Releasing his held breath in a satisfied sigh, Shrowder finished his sentence, “-On up there, ‘cause I passed a load of bodies on the way here.”
“That was almost a clever distraction,” I told him as I walked over, taking in the three men laying on the ground with knives jutting out of their chests. It looked like they had been handling some specialized equipment, but all Syndicate members wore armor and had combat training regardless of their role. Not that I’d have a problem with killing unarmed scientists.
“Oh come on, you’ve gotta admit that was slick,” Shrowder exclaimed.
Looking at the blade buried into the heart of each victim, and considering the time it took to put them there, I silently conceded that there was a reason why Shrowder’s career was surrounded by silly, over-embellished rumors of being a Hunter of the City gone rogue. Only silently.
Behind where the three had been standing amongst crates, tools, and machines of varying sizes, the rock walls gave way to a sheet of metal. There were scratches and scorch marks all across the flat surface, showing that they had already started trying to break through. This bunker must have something really important inside to be giving a prepared digging team so much trouble. Why was it underground with no entrances, anyway?
When I couldn’t figure out the answer within a few seconds I dismissed the question. Didn’t matter. All I needed to do was keep it safe so I could get paid.
“Son of a Thrall…” Shrowder mumbled, and I looked over to see him digging into a crate, “They’ve got enough explosives here to bust open a Cabal Land Tank.”
“And they were so kind as to leave us wheels to move them,” I grinned, gesturing towards a collection of carts and drilling machines.
Shrowder whistled, impressed with how well everything was coming together, “It’d be a shame to just keep the light show down here.”
“A shame indeed,” I nodded, “Drip, load as much as you can fit onto three of those drills.”
“Hmmm,” Drip stood still and looked around, confused.
“The things with wheels. Put the explosives there,” I sighed.
Drip grunted in acknowledgment, immediately stepping up to a crate and picking it up in his four arms. While he loaded the carts, I had Shrowder help me start planting more of the explosives against the tunnel walls in places that looked easier to break. Luckily, I had a good deal of experience with explosives thanks to years of assassination and sabotage jobs.
Eventually we got a good deal of them down so I let Shrowder continue with the placement while I searched around for triggers and remotes. Thankfully, everything was so well organized I found some right away. I swear, if these guys weren’t total obsessive pricks I would be on their side. It was while I was in the middle of connecting a remote detonator to a couple of the explosives that we were interrupted.
“Freeze!” a voice ordered, and I turned calmly to see a pair of Syndicate members standing further up the tunnel with guns trained on us. They must have snuck in without using their radios to call for backup so that they wouldn’t alert us to their presence. Smart move on their part, but it was exactly what I wanted.
Contrary to my tranquil composure, Shrowder jumped in surprise at the shout. “Shanks!” he yelped, dropping a charge and spinning to face the Syndicate troops.
“Can’t you see we’re planting explosives?!” he yelled at the enemy, not caring one bit about their guns pointing at him, “We all could’ve been blown straight back to Earth!”
“Put down your tools and weapons and-“ the man who had yelled before began to direct us.
“Put down?!” Shrowder huffed, “I already dropped the fluffing thing! Want me to kick it next?!”
Snickering at Shrowder’s foolishness, I kept fiddling with the remote in my hands as if I didn’t care about the hostiles. Naturally, I was ready to draw and shoot at a moment’s notice, but now was the time to let the clown create an opening.
“Enough!” the second Syndicate member, a woman, shouted, “Both of you! Hands up!”
That made Shrowder laugh, and I couldn’t help but chuckle a bit, too.
“What?!” the woman queried, raising her gun a bit more to make it clear she had no problem with shooting us.
“Both of us?” I asked her.
“Yes!” she snapped, “Right n-!”
Suddenly yanked up into the air, she didn’t get to finish her sentence as Drip shimmered into sight behind the two. Hefting the woman up with one arm, he put another hand over her face to silence her and then yanked it back violently. Before the corpse could even hit the ground, he was grabbing the man by the armor with two arms and slinging him across the tunnel to crash against the stone walls. He hit the ground limp and did not stir, but Drip made sure he was dead with a heavy stomp.
“Good job,” I acknowledged his effort, setting back to work on the detonator.
“How’d you even get around them?” Shrowder questioned.
“When look at you, not look at me,” Drip answered with a satisfied growl.
“Come on,” I interrupted, tossing another charge to Shrowder, “We need to plant some closer to the entrance.”
It didn’t take much longer to get the last of the explosives placed, and from here we could hear the sounds of battle still raging outside. The Syndicate should know better than to stand off against the Cabal, so they must have known what was in the bunker and decided it was important enough to risk losing their entire crew. A Mob digging team would have abandoned the job right away unless they had a proper armed escort, and even then there’s no guarantee they wouldn’t run off if the Cabal started to commit to the battle. There was something terribly entertaining about knowing this war was fought against an organization opposite to our own in so many ways.
“Drip,” I approached the Fallen as he and Shrowder were getting on their carts, which were stuffed full with explosives, and handed him the rifles of two Syndicate members we had killed, “You take point. Get us into the hangar, but take us around the path to the ship, not straight to it.”
“[i]I suppose I will discover the reason for this detour soon[/i],” Drip replied in his own tongue, taking the rifles in his upper arms and using his lower ones to hold the cart’s steering. Being a warrior who was too smart to limit himself with only the weapons of his species, Drip had learned how to use human weapons and grown quite skilled with them throughout his years as a mercenary.
“Shrowder, keep behind Drip,” I ordered simply, then added, as an afterthought, “And no yelling or cheering while we ride.”
The lack of a response from him as I mounted my vehicle made it clear he enjoyed hollering while driving fast, and was too embarrassed to admit it. Turning my engine on, I nodded to Drip, who shot out of the tunnel with the two of us close behind. We immediately turned off the path and began snaking our way around the dunes in a wide arc towards the ship, hidden in the sands. Estimating the travel and response times in my head, I raised one of the remote detonators I had taken out with me and released the safety. My gentle squeeze on the trigger was answered with a rumbling [i]boom[/i] and a rising cloud of sand from behind us.
[url=https://www.bungie.net/en/Forum/Post/257258125/0/0]Link to Chapter 3, Part 5[/url]
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