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Chapter 31 - Important People[]

Royal Palace Hospital
Tharkad City
Tharkad System
Lyran Commonwealth
November, 3097

[Hospital wing...]

"Oh shit, oh shit..." Amanda dashed across the corridor into an empty room, and hid.  A spray of automatic rifle fire licked the doorframe, informing her that no, she hadn't been quick OR quiet enough to avoid notice.

She turned the capacitor up to full on the flash-and-concussion grenade.  Drills in the Coast Guard showed that the lower settings were, for all intents and purposes, worthless in boarding actions against a prepped assault party and she didn't think it was any different here on the ground.  Locking the setting in, she lobbed it in a backspin motion.

Instead of going off when it hit deck, it went off mid-air just past the doorway of the room she just left, and there was a string of curses and one anguished shout.  Someone didn't have their filters set.

If their helmets were standard LCAF issue, it would take three seconds to clear.  Irena dashed across the hall to join Amanda in the empty office.

"Keep them busy." Amanda told her.

"Whot're yew going ter do?"

"Mouseholes," Amanda said, and jangled a couple of the variable grenades.  "When I signal, make for the big cabinet over there," she gestured.

"And then?" asked Irena

"Hold very still and be very quiet.  If I'm right, these guys are trained."

"And ef they' not?" Irena demanded.

"IF they aren't, we improvise." Amanda told her, "Just make sure they're coming HERE for us."

"Why here?"

"I want them to see the mousehole, of course." Amanda recited, and set to work on a connecting wall to an adjoining room with the crowbar, smashing holes into the wall, and planting grenades while the men in the hall started trying to advance and fire, Irena laying down fire on them in single shots, conserving her ammo.

Amanda set the detonators, and said, "Now, HIDE."

Irena followed instructions, crawling into a two meter by one meter by one and a half cabinet that held doctor's coats.

Amanda ducked under the desk, and pulled the chair to her.

Come on, believe your eyes, look guys...

BANG!!  The grenades went off, ripping a meter-wide hole in the wallboard between studs.

Booted feet entered their room, "Lieutenant! They doubled back!!"  His accent sounded vaguely wrong.

"Mousehole! they think they're being clever? Hah!!"  Definitely foreign.  The uniforms were 1st RG but, they were speaking English with a more... liquid accent.

"Go, backtrack, they're trying to get past us by doubling back.  Lamont, secure this end with Smythe, the rest of you, with me."

Boots left, Amanda peeked under the desk.  Two sets of boots.

Okay Irena, be smarter than me... thought Amanda

Amanda thumbed the last flashbang she'd taken, reached up, and placed it gently on the desk-top, wincing, three, two...  "Over here, Boys!!!"

The two men in the room advanced on the desk she was hiding under, their curiosity overcoming whatever training they had.

She clenched her eyes shut and covered her ears in a fetal position as the flashbang went off.

This was followed by more cursing and then, the cabinet door opening and the blam-blam-blam of a rifle.

Two bodies thumped to the ground as Amanda's senses slowly recovered.

She crawled out from under the now scorched desk, its metal surface cratered.
"Quick, they're not going to stay suckered," Amanda said.

  • Wiki Editor Note: This Chapter was re-written by the original author. To see the old version, look at history prior to this version of the chapter. The story for Amanda and Irena goes a different direction.

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