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Best Served Cold (Chapter Cover Art)

Chapter 4 - Best Served Cold[]


Ming-Na Plains
Tarnby, Smoke Jaguar Occupation Zone
May 7th, 3050


Star Captain Lilly McEvedy powered up her Pulverizer.  <<"Reactor Online.">> the computer answered as the cockpit came to life around her. With practiced ease, Lilly's fingers danced on the console, powering up individual systems, the steady green lights and computer voice letting her know each was activating flawlessly.

<<"Command interface engaged.  Communications online. C3 network awaiting master signal.  Sensors online.  Weapons online.  Receiving C3 master signal.  C3 network stable.  All systems nominal.">>

One by one, she saw the 'Mechs and vehicles of her Trinary come up on the command interface.  Once all were active, she toggled to the command frequency.  "Thunder Star, report in."

"Thunder Actual, green across the board."  That was the Rhino which formed the nexus of the Binary's C3 network.

"Thunder Two, guns charged."  Their Alacorn, with its three Gauss Rifles, linked the rest of Thunder Star to Thunder One.

Alacorn Heavy Tank (In Combat - By yukuzhelev 3D Model)

Alacorn Assault Tank

"Thunder Three, bringing the pain."  Their Demolisher Assault Tank, its standard autocannons upgraded to the LB-20X variety.

"Thunder Four, ready!" "Thunder Five, go."  Thunder Four and Five were a pair of Zephyr hovertanks, meant to quickly close with the enemy and get firing solutions for the network, or TAG exceptionally shy adversaries.

"Sword Actual, acknowledge Thunder Star ready.  Lightning Star, report in."

"Lightning Actual, Lightning Star is locked and loaded."  The five Pochtli Artillery Tanks were suggested by designs that had only been concepts while the Wolverines were still among the Clans.  Each carried two Arrow IV artillery systems and sufficient rounds of normal and homing missiles.

"Sword Actual, acknowledging Lightning Star ready.  Infantry Star, report in."

"Infantry Star is on your heels."  Lilly had insisted the twenty-five Power Armored soldiers accompany her on this sortie, partly to see how they stacked up against the Clans (especially the conjectured heavy battlesuits), partly to have a counter if those heavy battlesuits showed up.  She hoped their stealth armor would be sufficient advantage.

"Sword Actual, acknowledging Infantry Star ready.  Sword Star, report in."

"Sword Two, give the word, Captain." said Robina in her Spartan assault 'mech.

"Sword Three, standing by." said Rozalia in her Thug.

"Sword Four, five-by-five." said Sarah in her BattleMaster, the final link in the C3 chain.

"Sword Five, scanners hot." said Leslie from her Rifleman II.

"Great Hope, this is Sword Actual, call the ball."

"Sword Actual, Great Hope Actual, you have the ball."

"Copy." Lilly hesitated, knowing this would be an historic moment for her Clan, and she should say something, something profound, something worthy of a moment future generations would look at over and over again.

"At last we will reveal ourselves to the Clans.  At last we will have revenge."

Silence.

"That's a solid copy, Sword Actual." Great Hope replied after a moment.  "Good hunting."

Wincing, Lilly flipped to her Star’s comm frequency.  “Too much?”

“Too much.” Star Commander Robina replied.

“So melodramatic.” Point Commander Rozalia added.

“I think you watch too much Immortal Warrior.” Point Commander Leslie said.

Lilly shrugged.  “It sounded better in my head.  All right, Command Trinary, roll out, and let us hunt some Jaguars!”



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