In the middle of the night, the assault on Triton begins and Charlie's squad is still in the city...
Location: Hyperion, Picon
Related Scenes: None
Scene Number: 596
Charlie's barely able to keep her eyes once true night has fallen. They've been on the move with rarely a full night's sleep for weeks on end and their food situation has meant the entire squad is low on energy. They're operating on need alone. For all they know, they're the only recon team left in the city. The only ones trying to direct supplies in and out of Triton.
Her forehead bumps into the body of her rifle and she snaps upright again as Kallas swears softly behind her, trying to tap his radio equipment into the tower. "Almost," she hears him say to himself. He's been at it for hours and she's heard him fumble his tools more than a few times.
Something screams by overhead, then another. More still and for a brief second, Charlie allows herself to hope that Triton got word to orbit.
It disappears when the first bombs fall. As bright light blooms in the distance on Triton, what remaining hope she felt for the base -- for the city -- dissipates along with the billowing clouds of smoke. She doesn't even have to try looking through her scope to guess at the Raptors being shot down.
"Kallas," Hale hisses. When Kallas doesn't answer, he calls louder.
"Get us a ride out of here!"
"I'm trying," Kallas says and they can hear the tears in his voice. He wasn't even trying for the base anymore. He'd given up on that.
With nothing to do but wait as the battle is raged in the skies above, Charlie holds tight to her rifle. The exhaustion wars with the adrenaline, leaving her shaking through to her fingertips.
Static fires to chatter on Kallas' radio, suddenly, across the nervous silence on the rooftop. Ythael stumbles across from his post, tripping and falling the last few feet. They all crowd in to listen.
It takes a few tries for the operator on the other end to get their position and all they can do is promise to try to get a Raptor through. Try.
"...shooting them all down," she says before the signal is cut off.
They wait together under the tower for an hour, two. It's nervewracking, not knowing if you'll make it out or be left behind out of sheer necessity and ill-luck.
But then it happens; a Raptor comes screaming in and hovers nearby. They all take off running and dive in just as a pair of Cypers catch up and begin strafing fire.
Ythael doesn't make it as they pull away. Hale's grabbing, screaming for him, but it's too late. It's too late and Charlie's remembering the bodies on the bottom floor of the building that they wanted to bury, too.
Somehow, the Raptor loses the Cypers between the tall buildings. Maybe the rear-gunner is that good. They're told they're going to be dropped off at the edge of the city to off-load to another; they're leaking fuel too fast and that one had lost its pilot. It'll be fast. It'll be messy.
But the Cylons find them and in the exchange, Kallas is the first to fall. It's Hale that gives his life for Charlie. He shoves her ahead of him onto the Raptor and even then, she almost doesn't make it; one hand on the door and the other grabbing the ECO's. The ECO's whose arm is sheared off by shrapnel. There one second, gone the next. In the space between breaths.
Only by the talent of the pilot do they get away and survive breaking atmo.
It's in those final moments, looking out the canopy as she applies pressure to the ECO's arm while her own blood soaks through her battle dress, that Charlie catches a look through the canopy to see the bombs hit the levees.