Here's part 15 of Into the Hellmouth! FYI, since I have AP test this week, I would't expect the next part until Saturday. As usual, if you like it, give it a bump, and tell me what you think! Here's part 14 if you missed it: https://www.bungie.net/en/Forums/Post/201480341?sort=0&page=0
The FOTC commander swore, ducking as the shell screamed overhead. A few seconds later, he heard it explode behind him.
He grimaced, and activated his mic. “I don’t care what you have to do, just get rid of that Walker!” he shouted. “
“Copy, commander,” came a voice. “I’m doing the best I can!”
The commander swore again. They weren’t prepared for this! The Tower had assumed that the Fallen presence would be nigh on nonexistent in the area, so they’d given him thirty men and two dropships, and charged him with extracting a small group of refugees from the European Dead Zone. In reality, he had half of the House of Devils bearing down on him! If it hadn’t been for the Titan, they’d probably be dead right now.
All of the sudden, the commander heard an explosion, and his comms crackled to life. “Sir, the walker is down!” came a voice. “I repeat, the walker has been destroyed by our Titan!”
“About time,” the commander muttered. “Alright, get ready to land, and get these people out of here!”
The two dropships came in for a landing, and opened up there cargo bays. “All troops, fall back!” he shouted. “We’re getting out of here!”
The FOTC soldiers emerged from the nearby building, a trail of refugees following them. The commander waved them on. “Adiate tutti!” he shouted, remembering the Italian phrases that he’d been forced to learn. “Adiate tutti!”
A titan, fully clad in plasteel armor, emerged from around the corner, pulse rifle in hand. A mark hanging from his waist identified him as a member of the Pilgrim Guard - titans who’d dedicated their lives to escorting refugees back to the city. The refugees at first shrunk in fear of the titan, but then redoubled their speed toward the ship.
Then, one woman screamed, and began to run back towards the stone building behind them. Two FOTC soldiers grabbed her, and started pulling her towards the ship.
The commander swore again. Just what this day needed - an unwilling refugee. He ran up to the soldiers. “Get her on the ship!” he shouted. “Now!”
“Mia figlia!” the woman shouted. “Mia figlia é -“ the woman broke into a torrent of indecipherable Italian.
“What’s she saying!” the commander shouted.
“She says her daughter is still inside!” shouted one of the soldiers.
The commander looked back at the building with sorrow. The Fallen had breached it twenty minutes ago. If the girl wasn’t already dead, she would be soon.
“Get her on the ship!” he shouted, “We need to get out of here!”
Then, the commander felt a fist close around his wrist. He looked up, and saw the titan staring down at him. “I’ll go in and get the girl,” he said, “you go to the ship.” The titan ran off towards the building.
“Hey!” the commander shouted, but it was too late. The titan had disappeared into the smoke.
“Commander?” one of the soldiers said. “What are your orders?” The woman was still screaming in Italian.
The commander frowned. “Get to the ships,” he said, “we’ll wait as long as we can, but if it gets too hot, we pull out. Guardian or no Guardian.”
Vell Tarlowe ran into the stone building. “Ghost?” he said. “Scan for the girl.”
“Tarlowe, is it really wise to risk -“ the ghost began.
“Just do it, Ghost!” he said.
His ghost complied, but a scan proved unnecessary.
Vell heard the girl’s scream, loud and clear.
The titan swore, and ran towards the source of the sound. He ran down a hallway, and entered a large room, full of partially-destroyed boxes and tables. Tarlowe saw a girl - no more than fourteen or fifteen - backed into a corner, surrounded by a group of Fallen, all of them armed.
A hunter would’ve picked them off, one by one, perhaps with stealthily assassinations. A warlock would’ve distracted them, allowing the girl to run, and then taken them out.
But not a titan.
Vell ran toward the Fallen, and rammed into the nearest Vandal, slamming it into a wall. He felt the alien’s chest cavity cave beneath his knee. Then, he turned to the next one - a dreg - and eviscerated it with it’s own shock daggers.
Casually stepping over the alien’s body, he grabbed a shank floating nearby, and hit a vandal over the head with it, caving in the creature’s skull.
One by one, he eliminated the Fallen, until there was only one dreg left. He had it backed into a corner, shock pistols at the ready. Glancing side to side, the dreg fired off a couple shots.
Vell felt his shields flare as the energy dissipated against his armor. Slowly, he walked towards the alien. Sensing what was about to happen, his ghost spoke. “Vell,” he said, “the girl.”
Vell looked back at her. Her eyes were wide and fearful. He sighed. “Tell her to close her eyes,” he said.
His ghost blinked away towards the girl, and began speaking Italian to her.
Vell turned back towards the dreg, and advanced on the alien.
Foreseeing the inevitable, the dreg attempted to flee, but Vell grabbed it, and smashed it against the wall, and let it drop.
Dazed, the dreg stood for a moment. Then, Vell grabbed it’s head, and smashed it against the wall. Then, he smashed it again. And again. And again. And again. Until finally, their was nothing left for Vell to grab.
The decapitated body slid do the ground. Vell looked at his hand, which was caked in blood and gore. He shook it off, and wiped it on the wall. Then, he walked toward the girl.
Her eyes were shut tight, and her hands pressed against her ears. Then, she slowly opened her eyelids, and looked up at Tarlowe.
The titan extended a hand to her. She looked at it for a moment, and then took it. He pulled her up. “Come,” he said, “let’s get you to your mother.” Then, they ran off toward the building entrance.
The FOTC commander looked at the burning building from his ship. He grimaced. “Sir, our scanners are picking up at least two more Devil Walkers inbound!” shouted a soldier.
The commander sighed. “Prepare for takeoff,” he said.
“Sir, the Guardian -“ began a soldier.
“He knew the risks,” the commander said. “I won’t risk everything for one man.”
One of the dropships lifted off, and turned east toward the city. The commander turned around, and began shuffling up the walkway.
The woman was still screaming in intelligible Italian. Then, the commander heard a voice from behind him.
He turned around, and saw the titan running towards the dropship at flank speed, carrying a little girl in his arms. He ran up the walkway, breezing past the stunned commander.
The commander stood for a moment, and then shook his head to clear it. “Get us out of here!” he said. He ran into the belly of the dropship, and the walkway receded. He felt the dropship lift off the ground, just as a massive explosion erupted behind them. The dropship accelerated, and turned towards the Tower.
Edit: Part 16: https://www.bungie.net/en/Forums/Post/203323303
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