A mission to blow up a Cylon comms tower is marked with awkward reunions, drama and banter.
Location: Kannur Province
Related Scenes: None
Scene Number: 770
Somewhere in northern Kannur province is a place like this:
The Cylons have set up a comms array near the top of the waterfall, which intel believes is being used to relay communications from troops throughout the area. It's defended by several AA and point defense batteries, making it too risky to crack from the air. This squad's job is to blow it up. Any damage they can do to the AA batteries is a bonus.
The marine squad is being dropped by Raptor a mile away (off-screen to the top left of the image) and will be coming through the jungle. There is a company-sized unit of Cylons camped out further down the mountain (off-screen to the bottom right) so the squad can't linger. Get in, plant the explosives, get out. There might be patrols in the area, and it's expected that the AA batteries on the top of the mountain will be defended by a squad-sized Centurion unit.
Sitting at the furthest inside edge of one crew area of the cockpit, Abigail is working until the last minute, completing her load out. Over her normal battle dress, she has an extra vest, filled with pockets, clips and everything one might need...if they were needing to strap enough explosives to themselves to blow up a small city...well, okay no, but 'Semper Paratus', she always likes to be prepared. She also likes to stay not dead, and so all of the components are kept strictly separated in her kit. Not much time for chatter, though she does mark the other Marines as they too await the drop.
Listening to the briefing, Jonas is setting up his comm gear as he loads up on the Raptor and pulls the gear and his rifle into place. On the way down, he's chatting with Abigail, but the Raptor crew and Marines in general. "So I tell the Colonial Forces guy - yeah, I've been in the snow for most of my life, can you send me someplace a little warmer? You know, I'm not asking for a beach, but defined seasons would be nice." he's commenting and then smirks. "He looks me in the eye and says, 'Yeah sure, I know just the place', and here I am." he offers with a grin.
Then he notices all the gear that she has to lug around. "You take that suit everywhere? Sure it does wonders on your figure." Taking out his foil pouch, and opens it, pulling out some pink shreds of gun to pop into his mouth, before he offers it to the Picon girl if she wants some. "Said you might want it when we got to work." he reminds her with a smirk.
Sometimes, it's a relief not to be in charge, not that Tavo would ever admit that. Instead, he rides down in the Raptor with nothing to worry about but his own personal gear, which all gets checked one more time as he crouches by the door, one hand wrapped around a grab handle. SAW slung on his right shoulder, check. Mag full and loaded, check. Frags and smoke at his belt, check. Two extra mags on his carry harness, check. Canteens, check. Radio, check. Extra batteries, check. Knife at his right thigh, check. NVGs in their pouch at his belt, check. One-shot rocket launcher slung across his back, check. The equipment starts to add up in weight and heft, at times, but that's where being a very, very big man comes in handy. Looking up at the other Marines in the Raptor (otherwise known as the flying deathtrap), Tavo lets the words of the other big man wash over him, then chuckles dryly, "Intel says company-sized at the base of the 'fall. Any bets on 'battalion-sized at the top of the 'fall?'"
"Be careful what you wish for, I guess," Cate offers off-hand to Jonas. She's sitting on one of the benches next to Aldrich. Then she glances over at Tavo. "Knowing our luck lately? That's a sucker's bet," she deadpans.
Ah Calhoun, yet again sneaking his way into an operation with the authorization of Dr. Inne Peci. She's been good to him, having a looser definition of recovered for duty than some others. Settled in on the raptor, his eyes cast around to take stock of the assigned group and nodding in approval, recognizing several faces and taking a moment to scan over those he's still yet to formally meet. Reaching into his pocket, he pulls out his canteen to take a water swig prior to drop, awaiting the warmth of the jungle.
Unlike previous trips out into the field, Charlie is a bit more prepared in one sense. It's meant a bit more gear than usual... up front. Her rifle already has her scope on it, for one. Heck, she's got her whole sniper setup with her. It's going to weigh her down in the long run, but with the SniperBots(TM) out there, she's not taking the risks. It also means she's getting some extra rest in ahead of time on the Raptor flying in and is napping. Or appears to be. That means Calhoun is serving as a makeshift pillow as she slumps over, having dozed off almost immediately.
Staff Sergeant Eudora Rothschild is again strikingly calm and at ease during much of the transport down. She is reading a very small book that is meant for the limited pockets of a Marine's BDUs. It appears by the title to be some kind of Leonese prose. She doesn't lift her eyes at the comments from Tavo and Cate, but her mouth twitches with the faintest smile. She turns a page. "I'll bet you two bags of laundry that you're wrong, Gigas." She quirks a brow slightly then, looking up to Tavo.
Aldrich is staying mostly quiet as usual, the conversation just sort of flowing around him as he sits next to Cate. He glances over to her with a faint smirk as she comments on their luck. "You could say we're overdue for some good luck," he points out, and pauses to check his gear. For probably the fifth time since they set out. Hey, it pays to be (over) prepared.
"'Lately?'" Tavo shakes his head, "Doc, if you've had better luck somewhere else," he pauses, then changes what he was going to say, "you should totally forget it. Don't want you getting any ideas about transferring out." Looking back over to Rothschild, he shakes his head at her response, "Done. But my clothes are bigger, I think it should be three of mine to two of yours, Praety." The big man's snort at Aldrich's words shows rather eloquently what he thinks of the idea of good luck, but he notes, "From your lips to the Gods' ears, padre."
Abigail reaches over, pulling out a wad of gum, as she sees Jonas offering it, "You know, I had a captain once, whenever we got into bad seas, and you spent most of your days trying to sail with one hand and puke into a bucket with the other, he'd say, 'Just do what my mother used to do, close your eyes and think of Picon.'." She sticks the wad in her mouth and keeps working, "Resistance training. Workouts on the hoof." She's finally finished, hands reaching down to latch and secure her gear, before she turns to actually checking over her rifle.
Cate gives Aldrich a brief nod to acknowledge his point, then smirks at Tavo. "Don't worry, Tavo, you're safe." Though Rothschild gets a curious look. "What does 'Gigas' mean?" Abigail's comment about Picon gets a look, but Cate says nothing.
"One minute to touchdown," the Raptor ECO relays on behalf of the pilot.
"Very well, but do remember that my unmentionables are hang-to-dry only." Then Rothschild turns another page in her small book, looking back over the text. "I personally don't believe in luck." Says the woman who somehow managed to survive thirty-six hours of total hell with only a picture-perfect forehead knick. "If you follow the rational, they are relying on the AA batteries to protect the relay. They place Cylons at the bottom of the falls to stop a ground strike and the batteries prevent an air strike. Adding that many additional Centurions is a waste of resources." She lapses into silence as she hears the call from the ECO, and she nods vaguely. She looks to Cate at her inquiry. "'Giant.'" She starts to smile. "Simple and straightforward. Like Delgado." She flicks a glance Tavo's way before she closes her small book and pockets in in her BDU jacket.
"Gigas? Thought she was saying Bigass." Jonas offers as he moves to offer Cate the gum as well. Accepted or not, he moves to put the foil pouch away afterwards. Making sure his gear is secured, he hears the report of the Raptor's landing and moves to stand up as he sets his hand hold the chicken bar to prepare for deployment.
"Good, Doc." The report from the ECO causes Tavo to look down and give the magazine of his SAW a light smack on the bottom, making sure it's seated properly. You only need it to jam on you once to learn that lesson. "Or they place Cylons at the bottom to make us think there aren't more at the top." He doesn't sound like he really thinks there will be a battalion of Toasters at the top of the falls, but the fact that there might be some is enough. "Any laundry you give me goes in the washer with soap, then in the drier, sorry Praety." And then he rolls his shoulders, glancing down a little, almost bashfully, and notes, "I'm not simple." Straightforward... probably. Then he slowly rises to his feet, choking up on the grab bar to keep him steady at the left side of the door. Jonas' comment causes him to look over his shoulder at his backside, then shrug slightly, evidently unconcerned about what he might have learned about its relative size.
Sergeant Lyn Arda got on board the Raptor a bit before everyone else, and immediately pulled her helmet down, curled up in a corner, and went to sleep, to wait for someone to wake her when they get on the ground.
Cate ahs softly when Tavo's new nickname is explained. Hearing the exchange between them though she says, "Careful, Roths. Last time I lost a laundry bet, the joker decided it would be funny to put a red marker in with underwear. Made a hideous gray-pink color," Cate says dryly. But then the Raptor is preparing to touch down and Cate is falling quiet.
The Raptor touches down in a clearing about a mile from the target area, and the marines disembark. They begin the slog through the unbroken jungle. Good thing the trusty Corporal Martinez brought along a machete. He takes point. Sergeant Jayne is here too somewhere.
Being the person farthest in the bag, Abigail has the luxury of being able to sit a while...and think of Picon...as she waits for the rest of the Marines to disembark from the raptor. Once she's clear, she too rises, heading towards the exit. A pause, a hand patting the hull of the ship before she hops down to join the group, falling into the rear. She's not drogue, but she's far enough in the back that she has some amount of shielding by the other Marines. All to the good when you're carrying explosives.
Moving to turn down the squelch on his radio, Jonas already knows he's close to the comm relays because the feedback is frakking ferocious in his ears. As he notices the sleeping Marine in the corner of the Raptor, the radioman leans over and gives a sharp rap of his knuckles against the top of her helmet. "Rise and shine, we're at our destination, and the nearest service station is five hundred miles away." And then he's moving to follow the others out, leaving only his backside for Lyn to glare at and wonder who just rung her bell.
"That would be tergo magna," Rothschild says helpfully to Jones. Then she starts to laugh at the response from Cate, but it is short lived as the Raptor makes its touchdown. She glances over toward Tavo, nods once, and then starts to stand as she grabs her gear -- nothing that is comfortable to wear for the entire trip down. She has her standard SAW, but also has been authorized for the LAW that is slung across her back. That's what those broad shoulders are for, apparently. The Leonese woman glances over toward those still in the Raptor, and then she joins the exit out.
For all the gear she has, it's not overly much. Corporal Wagner just isn't traveling light. She might as well be ready for a forty-eight hour campaign at the moment. The woman is on her feet fairly quick once word comes down that they're landing. Or just about to land. Helmet on, final check of gear, and shaking herself to full alertness once she's off the Raptor and on the ground proper. "Canceron. Can't wait to see this planet in our proverbial rear view." She stretches, checks over her rifle, and falls into formation. Happy enough to end up somewhere near the front to act as eyes there- or near the rear of the group to watch their tail. Really, wherever the OIC tells her to stick her ass.
As the knock on her helmet comes it gently rocks Lyn back to awareness. The Ghost grunts, stands and unshoulders her rifle, and pushes her helmet back to reveal her face. She blinks a few times as something tries to filter through her nap fog from just a moment ago. Her head tilts a bit, cocking to one side, as she registers something painfully familiar. No, not the sounds of Canceron's jungle, or the hum of the Raptor's engines. The voice of the guy that told her to get up. "Gods-damned frakking son of a motherless walrus!" she curses out loud, hopping out of the rapyor and scanning the backs of the men in front of her before reaching out to grab the shoulder of one of the marines, Jonas, to try turn him around. It can't be him. IT CAN'T!
Tavo looks like he's considering Cate's story/suggestion for a long moment, and then he shakes his head, chuckling as he does. Apparently that's not a thing he would do -- or not a thing he would advertise he was going to do until he did it. When the door pops open, he gets his SAW up to his shoulder, covering the squad as they disembark, and then trotting a few steps to catch up and fall into the middle of the column with just one more grumble, "Should have hit you up for the good bug juice, Praety." For a shorter trip, he would probably offer to take chopping duty for some part of it, but if he's going to hump a LAW, a SAW, and all its ammo for a mile through the jungle while keeping alert, he's going to focus on that. The Ghost's reaction causes Tavo to frown slightly, but he keeps quiet for now, letting Jayne handle the issue if he needs to be handled.
"What, don't you like mosquitos and rain every five minutes and giant attack snakes?" Cate says dryly to Charlie, before giving Lyn an odd look. "Walrus? That ranks pretty high on the list of strangest exclamations I've ever heard." She's moving off the Raptor.
Jayne looks back at Lyn, "There a problem, Sergeant?" he asks sharply.
Grabbed by the shoulder, Jonas pulls away, "Yes, I'm perfectly aware, Staff Sergeant." he starts to say, before he adds in Leonese, "<<Though I think that referring to him as a Titan is not terribly fitting, either.>>" And that's when he's spun around and finds himself face to face with a Ghost. Not a literal Ghost. Just the figurative one. A finger to his lips, he goes, "Shhh. Hi, Muffin." And with that, he's moving out to follow after the other Marines.
Lyn swallows whatever other epithets she had been building up to at the sharp tone of Jayne. "No, sir, Staff Sergeant. Just an unexpected..." Fiasco? Disaster? Catastrophe? "...surprise, sir." Her face is red enough one might expect her hair to burst into angry flames. She grits her teeth and resumes the march. "We'll talk later, Bubbles."
Abigail, which is a definite plus, being in the back, gets to watch the whole show unfold. She even blows a bubble, not a huge one, though, because this is serious business, but it's like a trainwreck you can't look away from. "I've never seen a walrus. Is she making a snide comment about the size of his hips?" She doesn't pay too much attention beyond that, keeping on target and on mission, mostly. An arch of a brow, mouthing to the marine beside her, 'Bubbles?'
"To be fair, the giant attack snakes is not Canceron's fault." Rothschild does flick a glance toward Lyn with a slight quirk of a brow. She settles her well-worn boots into the mud, wriggling her feet a bit before she starts forward with a slight squelch. Her curiosity continues to slide backwards toward Lyn, particularly as Jayne speaks up. The Gunner is forestalled now, glancing back toward some of the chaos around walruses and Lyns.
"Maybe not, but it had the giant snakes to begin with," Cate points out to Rothschild. She smirks at Jonas then. "Bubbles? Oh you are so never living that down." She checks her rifle, gets her pack situated, and glances back to make sure Aldrich is doing all right.
"Frakkin' mosquitos," Charlie mutters in response to Cate. She squints at her scope, taking out a rag from her pocket to fuss at the lens a bit. "Think the canners have to worry about humidity on their weapons?" The woman speaks quietly as she moves along, head on a swivel. Particularly far in the trees. She's going to do her damndest to avoid letting one of those things getting the drop on them. Again.
Aldrich follows along with the group. He does glance over to follow the drama as it unfolds, but mostly he's just being quiet and keeping to himself, as usual. He sticks near Cate so he'll be available to assist if the situation should suddenly go south.
Gustavo shrugs helplessly at Abigail as she mouths the question at him. "No idea." His words are quiet, and he keeps his attention outward, studying one side of the trail and trusting that those ahead of and behind him are studying the other. He settles into the slow pace of a jungle march, "Real snakes don't much like gunfire." There's a pause, "At least, Scorpian snakes don't." Before long, a light sheen of sweat begins to stand out on his brow, beneath the rim of his helmet. "They didn't much like the humidity on Scorpia."
Out of the side of his mouth, Jonas blows a small bubble with his gum before sucking it in with a small 'pop' of noise. Bubbles. "She was into pet names when we dated back at Thula. Dare you to ask her why I call her Muffin." comes the wry comment as he walks in the line quietly with the rest of them, his hand raising to press against his ear on occassion as he picks up auxilarily traffic, but continues on.
Maybe it's the healing head wound. Jonas is just a hallucination, right? Lyn can pretend that's the case until the mission is over, at least. The recon scout adjusts her gear and re-gathers her lost composure. Arda losing it is not a common occurrence. She shakes it off and moves her eyes to the trees and the brush, looking for anything unnatural amid the natural forms. Her Cylon sniper nemesis could be out there. She has a scar to pay it back for. Jonas' comment has her snorting. "Uh huh, just the gum. It had nothing at all to do with champagne and a bathtub out behind the station." Nothing like running into one's ex to brighten up a mission.
"Maybe when we're not all about to get shot at - I don't want her mad at me," Cate replies to Jonas. Lyn gets a brief smirk and then she's falling in towards the back, near Abigail. "I still don't get the walrus thing," she comments to the other woman.
"A bathtub....in the snow...at Thula?" Abigail ticks off every salient point of the clarification, from Lyn, not from her fellow gum popper, "Weren't you worried about...you know...skrinkage?" She looks back at Jonas' back, "Guess they grow up big on Aquaria." A sniff, as she hears Cate's comment, the peanut gallery apparently, wonderfully out in force, "I really think she called him fat."
"Just pretend all the Toasters are the other one, guys." That's Tavo's quiet advice. "We've got a mission." No fun zone, population of one.
"Shrinkage was the last thing she worried about that night." comes Jonas' comment to Abigail as he just continues to walk. "And all that champagne had to be used for something after the cancelled party."
Lyn grunts at Tavo's suggestion and flits a glance at Abigail with a faint smirk. She lets Jonas answer that and rolls her eyes skyward. If the gods are listening, they can throw some bullets at her anytime now for a distraction.
Cate mumbles to Abigail, "Must grow them blind on Aquaria too, because that? Not fat." She smirks and continues walking.
After a fun (not!) walk in the woods, the group eventually gets to within range of their target area. Of course they still can't actually see it because there's some thick jungle involved. Which is why Sgt Jayne turns to his recon peeps, "Wagner, Arda, scout forward and see what we're dealing with. Rest of you, set up a perimeter."
Abigail manages one final look at Joas...from the back, giving Cate a sage nod, before she breaks out to follow Jayne's orders, falling into formation into a decent enough perimeter to give the two recon marines a chance to do their jobs. She tries to stick as low as she can, using her surroundings, as best she can, to mask her body. She knows she sort of sticks out like a sore thumb.
Gustavo glances over to Rothschild at the order to set up a perimeter, some silent gunner communication going on (otherwise known as, 'two of us, two flanks, which one do you want?') before he steps off the Martinez-made trail to their left, finding a raised tree root and setting up his SAW's bipod on it where he can cover the center and left flank of the group.
Aldrich could have warned Lyn to be careful what she asked the gods for. But relationship drama aside, he proves he's paying attention with a dry, quiet comment probably only audible to Cate and Abigail, since they're nearest. "Maybe it's referring to the tusks." With that, he goes quiet again for this perimeter-setting business.
Finally. Charlie can only handle so much 'we're being ultra cutesy but trying to pretend we're not' before she gets restless. The woman gives something akin to a salute before she takes off into the brush after a quick adjustment of her gear. And the brush? Barely moves in her passing. The Corporal is there and then she's just.. gone.
"Yes sir," Lyn responds to Jayne. Then the Ghost shoots Jonas a look, and vanishes into the jungle like her spectral callsign would indicate. She sinks her teeth into her lower lip, using the sharp pain to bring her focus back to the mission and off her ex. Clearly, CLEARLY they did not part on good terms.
Moving to settle into position, Jonas moves with Abigail to set up his area of the flank. Reaching behind him to make sure his antenna is secured in the down position as he chews idly on his gum, keeping his eyes out on the jungle scape and muttering to himself as he swats at his arm. Frakking bugs. One thing not to worry about on Aquaria.'
Rothschild meets the glance with an upward tilt of her head. Her brows arch slightly, she offers a single shoulder shrug, and then she nods right to indicate her chosen flank. She adjusts the LAW on her back, and then also finds a place to set up her own bipod. She glances down the length of the SAW before she looks back up and around the forested area around them. She hears the buzz of a mosquito close to her ear, and she ignores it as it zips close and then immediately away. It will be back.
Face palm, should have taken it as a background skill; for Evan is learning to master the gesture. AS he moves to help set up permimeter to allow the others to do their jobs, he scans the jungle brush to contemplate whether or not he should find a better spot to post up at or if his location is good. It reminds him of the quad back in high school, how finding the ideal spot to watch everything was such a chore.
Abigail takes a knee, covering Jonas as he checks over his equipment. Thankfully, she's not just hanging with him for the meatshield, because, as Cate pointed out, not much fat on him. In point of fact, the radioman is also the proud owner of the secondary detonation system for her load out. The backup, in case she can't finish the mission, or can't get safely away before the mission needs to be completed.
Charlie and Lyn move like ghosts through the jungle, sneaking forward until the foliage thins out enough that they can see the comms tower reaching up toward the sky. Spread out around its base are two point-defense cannons and two SAM launchers. There are eight Centurions and four more lightly-armored Cylon models in the vicinity guarding it. There's really no way to get close to the tower without taking out the Cylons first (unless you're anxious for a suicide run). But there is a place on the west side where they can get a little bit of high ground and cover in some rocks.
Lyn slips back out of the dense foliage a few minutes later, after making her observations. She confers with Charlie near where the group is, and follows the other scout in.
It's a short while later that Charlie reappears. Just as silently as she disappeared. Not there and then suddenly there. She's chosen to exit the more dense undergrowth just by Evan with Lyn. There's a bit of a grab for the Sergeant's hip on her way by, other hand on her rifle. "Sir," she calls for Jayne after the brief chat with Lyn, crossing the area with the perimeter and all setup. "We've got the comms tower alright. Two point-defense cannons, two SAM launchers. Eight Cents, four other light-armored models on guard. Gotta take out the guards beforehand." She lifts a hand to swat at a mosquito. "There is a good spot on the west side with high ground and cover that'd be a good point for us to approach."
Tavo waits with every indication of patience, waving a hand slowly at a mosquito that buzzes past his face rather than making any louder slapping sounds, and sipping from his canteen now and then. It's hot, it's humid, it's uncomfortable, it's almost like home. So he sweats in silence, although the report draws some attention away to the senior Staff Sergeant, and he nods, gathering his legs under him in preparation for moving out.
Evan follows a bit, mostly with his eyes and a tilt of his head as Charlie and Lyn pass by, then report to Jayne. A glance is given back and he speaks out, "This high ground, any way we could use it to set up a cross fire? A way to deploy some heavy hitting to try and thin them out? Cause Eight Cents.. is a lot of chrome to deal with."
Aldrich has been dutifully watching the greenery for signs of anything that they should be concerned about, but he looks over when Lyn and Charlie return, anticipating the next phase of the mission.
Rothschild turns her gaze temporarily toward Charlie as she re-emerges. She glances once toward Tavo, and then begins to readjust her SAW for movement. She begins to move in toward the rest of the group.
"Split up the two gunners, they have the heavy firepower." Jonas offers. "If we have to do some climbing to get to the high ground, I have experience, so does Arda." See, didn't call her Muffin. He takes a moment to tuck his gum between his cheek and gum to take a draw of water before chewing again.
Lyn stands back as Charlie makes the report, avoiding looking in the direction that Jonas is in. At his words however, she nods to Jayne. "I have gear in my back if we need it." She always has her gear. It's handy when scouting.
If there were such a thing as the football, in this iteration of the worlds, Abigail would be it. She's alert, but seems to have no opinion to offer as to tactics. She'll go where she's needed. A quick glance, over the group, checking that everyone's back, before she looks back to her patch of jungle.
Jayne nods to the report and to the suggestions. He draws a little in the dirt. "We're going to set up in an L to get the cross fire. Wagner you're going to anchor the end in a sniper position on their flank. Tavo, Calhoun, Martinez, the padre and I will be here in the high ground. Walker, Praety, Arda, Rhodes, Ingvar, you guys take the other side. Hold your fire till I open up. Questions?"
^ o T
AA ^ AA o o e
AA AA o o o a
o o m
Even as Jayne sketches out his layout in the dirt, Charlie is checking over her gear to verify her stand and everything on hand. Yup! "I'm good." Nope, no questions from her.
"Heavy weapons set up for enfilade fire to support an advance?" Tavo keeps the query/suggestion quiet. Jonas' suggestion draws a slight twist of Tavo's lips, a vague grimace, but he doesn't comment further on it. Gathering up his SAW, he approaches the map, then nods, "Spotter for Wagner?" That's the only question he has for the mission commander.
"Need spotter?" Evan asks towards Charlie, a follow up to Tavo's question. His eyebrow is quirked slightly towards the woman before he nods towards the outlined plan. "We have any explosives we can deploy on them? Grenades, RPG?"
A quick shake of her head, as Abigail gives her gear a final once over, glancing back at the sketch to commit it to memory, "Nothing from me, Sarge."
Lyn gives a short shake of her head; no questions from her. "I can take point and scout ahead," she offers to Praety, the ranking officer in their team.
With the plan being laid out, Jonas gives a curt nod of acknowledgement to the orders. "Understood, on your mark, Sergeant." he agrees. To Evan's question, he gestures to Tavo and Roths. "Two anti-tank missiles." he offers as he's already waiting to follow the rest of the group to their attack position.
Tavo gets the LAW on his back a pat at Evan's question, nodding at Jonas' mention, and then gestures to Abigail, "Plus Walker." Because she qualifies as an anti-installation weapon all on her own, apparently.
Aldrich steps over to where he can see the diagram in the dirt, but just nods mutely when the explanation is finished. No questions from him, apparently.
"If a spotter is being offered," Charlie offers as she double, triple-checks her rifle, "I'll take Calhoun." There's a thumb briefly hiked his way. "He ought not pull his stitches anyway." He may have sweet-talked a doc into giving him clearance, but she knows better.
Praety tilts her head to stare at the dirt-drawn map, and then she looks up at the fellow Staff Sergeant. "Missed your calling as a dirt drawer, Sarge." Her lovely Leonese accent delivers the compliment almost too perfectly, there's no room for the hint of sarcasm. It must be delicately hidden between the syllables. Then she beams a brilliant smile to Evan and shows off her LAW. "I'm sure Delgado has some witty bit about upholding the LAW, but I'll leave that to him." Then she goes to group up with her team.
Abigail lifts her head, at the sound of her name, flashing a quick, beaming smile in Gustavo's direction.
Jayne waves a hand to Charlie. "Fine, Calhoun with Wagner then. Use your grenades if you can. Everything down there's a target." He smirks at Pratey then nods to everyone. "All right, let's move out."
Abigail rises, once all the questions re cleared and the teams have been queued up. She heads out, falling in close to her backup man, about midway in the group as they head to their position.
Evan's eyes blink once, blink twice. He just got sent to spotter duty? He opens his mouth to say something but closes it, shooting a quick look to Charlie before he clears his throat. "Lead the way."
Lyn takes point for Team 2, scouting several meters ahead before returning to silently update the team with hand signals. She comes and goes with soundless footsteps, trained to scout in snow and ice, which is unforgiving of a heavy step.
"I'm simple, remember. I don't say anything witty." And then Tavo's moving off to join the flanking team, setting himself up to take the furthest extension to get his SAW into a position to rake fire down along any Cylon line of resistance.
"Sounds like we should be expending grenades first." Jonas is commenting to Abigail and the rest of the team as they move out towards the main body position, keeping his rifle pointed skywards as he reaches up to engage the camera on the side of his helmet in order to record the firefight for further examination at a future date.
There's a glance to Evan as he looks her way and Charlie shrugs. "You offered." At least that's how she interpreted it! The woman double-checks her gear before tilting her head off in the direction they need to go. "C'mon. Let's go and make sure we've got everyone covered."
"I am a grenade." Tavo said so. Again, that flash of a grin, as she reaches down, loosening the clasps on the two she carries with her. "If worse comes to worse, I can rig a few, use your radio to get the range to bridge the distance." She keeps herself hunkered down though, she's not going to be the one to charge on in there. She will dig in and try to get a good line of sight to wait for Jayne's signal though.
Cate isn't thrilled about being separated from Aldrich. She gives him a little nod before moving off with the other team. The medic has no grenades, so she just checks her rifle before moving out.
"I think you misunderstood the tone." Evan states back towards Charlie, the normal happy go lucky tone a little angry. "There's a difference between checking if you need a spotter and volunteering for it." Still, orders are orders and as he follows along with the sniper, he pulls out binoculars from his pack so that he can do the job he needs to do.
The Praetorian of Trenoir takes her time getting setup -- well, not that much time, but enough time where she can find a good position in sight of the Centurions and a place to set up her bipod. She sticks close to her team. She glances up toward the others in her group before she settles in, using a flora and fungi covered log as a place to settle in. She looks down iron sights, focused on the first glint of Centurion that falls in her view.
Aldrich takes a moment to give Cate an encouraging smile before he joins his own team to head off into position. He hungers down a short distance from Tavo, and pauses with his eyes closed for a second. Saying a prayer? Maybe. But it's a short one if so, and then he gives Tavo a little smile before turning his attention to the task at hand, waiting for the signal.
Lyn chooses a spot behind the rocky cover she and Charlie had spotted earlier, and waits for everyone to get into position. She holds a grenade in one hand, other lightly on the pin, as she waits for Jayne signal.
There's a slight rumble from Charlie in answer. "Ah." She doesn't look at Evan. She's settled into the spot she's chosen for them to work from. "Well, I could have done without a spotter to be honest. Having one? It helps." She makes a few minor adjustments of the rifle. Calm, calculated. "But I saw how hitting that bag strained you last night."
Tavo settles into the rocks at the end of the line of Marines, closest to the cliff. He braces his bipod beside one of the rocks where it gives him some cover, and then he leans into the butt of his SAW, drawing a bead on one of the Centurions milling about before the group.
After settling into position, Jonas takes a moment, before pulling out one of the grenades. Setting his rifle to the side for easy access, he settles into position to get an idea of the distance, and looks about, gesturing toward two of the Centurions on the left, and then to the grenade, indicating where he's planning to throw before he releases the grenade and lets it fly after yanking the pin and popping the spoon.
Cate glances around at her teammates, nodding briefly to Jonas when he indicates where he's going to throw. She takes aim at one of the Centurions and takes a breath before pulling the trigger.
No more joking, now, as Abigail slots herself into good position behind some cover, eyes scanning the targets below, trying to gauge which might be the most vulnerable, which might benefit from the best application of random explosive. These are serious decisions.
Cate lets loose a long burst at one of the Centurions. She hit it five times - FIVE TIMES - and barely seemed to make a dent. "Motherfrakker," she mutters under her breath. So much for surprise. She flips the selector switch to a more sensible short burst this time though.
In for a penny, in for a pound. Jayne said grenades first, and that seems to be what Abigail's decided to do. The beautify of jurygigging the shit out of something if you shoot your load too early. Lobbing the first, she pulls the second out of her quick-release and lines up another shot.
Lyn listens, quietly, and once Jayne's first shot is heard, she pulls the pin on the grenade and sends it soaring right towards the feet of one of the Cylon Centurions. The egg-shaped object goes BOOM and shrapnel flies out among the cluster of enemies. Ghost shifts to her rifle and draws a bead on one of the centurions still standing.
Cate also flinches a bit when grenades start going off left and right. But she doesn't lose focus on her target.
While there is plenty to the cliche of just taking a breath and settling into the moment, cliches are based in reality. So, Rothschild takes that calming breath and narrows her eye slightly down the iron sights. Then she immediately starts to lay down a fan of fire, the rattatat-tat of the machine gun ringing out. There's no way to hide that. The first Centurion in her sights drops, the second taking damage to appendages. She narrows her focus on that Centurion now that it, undoubtedly, has focused on her.
Waiting for Jayne to start the party, Tavo pours fire into a pair of Centurions, the SAW stuttering against his right shoulder and drawing a grimace of pain from his still-healing right arm and the slowly-fading bruising across his chest. Leaves between him and his target are shredded, bits of green filtering down toward the forest floor. His rounds are overwhelmingly on-target, kicking up sparks from Centurion armor... and not much more. He frowns in surprise, a glance darting down to his magazine long enough to wonder if he's still packing the AP rounds he hand-chained together, but then he's drawing in a breath and leaning into his weapon once more.
Once the grenade goes off, Jonas is already switching to his rifle, slipping the second grenade next to Abigail to give her a third as he's already lining up his shot as the explosions go off. After firing, he taps his radio. "Vanguard Lead, Indigo Four-One, engaging enemy forces at comm station, standby for report." Once the first contact report is out, he won't call up the radio again until needed.
Evan continues looking through the binoculars into the valley and speaks in a steady voice. "Shot grazed a leaf, threw it off. First target down. 2-degrees to the east second target." Lowering the glasses, he looks around the perimeter, doing a survey to make sure nothing has started to close in on their position.
There's a grunt of frustration from Charlie as her shot glances off the Centurion's armor. Sure, others take it down, but she's still unhappy with herself. She takes a slow breath, adjusting with Evan's directions, shoulders and elbows shifting against the ground as she lines up. "Frak Canceron." Isn't the first and won't be the last time she'll say that on this mission.
Sweat slides down Lyn's back, as if in response to Charlie's far off quiet curse. Frak Canceron is also in her thoughts, because she misses snow. She narrows her focus, lets out a long breath, and fires. She watches her shots spark off armor, though one seems to penetrate slightly. That's alright though, because her teammates pile on the damage and it goes down. She doesn't even flinch when a Cylon's shot puts a divot in the rock she's using for cover. She takes aim at the one that shot at her.
"Target down." Evan confirms softly and makes an adjustment on the binocular scope. He turns it some to look over the area and speaks again. "Last shot was about 3 C.M. to the left. That's the second shot to the left. Adjust scope." The tone is pretty dang professional sounding from the man as he takes a moment to glance over at Charlie. "You're fine. Keep it up. Next target 2 meters to north by northwest."
Abigail lobs her next grenade, managing to duck back, just in time to avoid the shot being fired in her direction. She pauses, taking a breath, before she ducks back out, grabbing up the grenade Jonas left for her and seeing if she can be three times lucky.
This time, Rothschild is focused on the Centurion's torso. With a tight curl of a finger, she sends off a burst of ammo at the Cylon, dinging it twice solidly after Lyn's strike, and the other knicks across its shoulder just before the enemy drops. This is just before she is ducking out of sight of fire, and a burst of violet petals flutter around her as the miss instead rips through a small cluster of native flora.
Aldrich gets a shot off and even hits what he's aiming at... just in time for what he's aiming at to hit back. He gives a little startled grunt and flinches, but a quick glance down shows that it's nothing he can't live through. He glances to the left and right, checking to be sure no one on his team needs medical attention, before he brings his his rifle up for another shot.
"Humidity keeps getting into it," Charlie says of the scope. She's adjusting it all the same, fussing a bit at the glass. "Need to talk to the armory, see if they've got anything that fits this beast." One of the loving nicknames for her particular piece of kit. She takes a breath, digging her toe a bit into the dirt as she adjusts. "Could use a drink..."
Glancing quickly to Lyn to check on the sniper, Jonas frowns as his rifle shots seem to be glancing off the armor. "Fine.. let me see if all those shooting lessons paid off.." he ones that Lyn gave him as he narrows his focus to fire a shot at a paticular spot on the Centurion he's engaging.
Second time's the charm. Cate fires a burst that takes down the Centurion. One of the unarmed Cylons picks up the fallen one's rifle and takes aim.
"Remember to let your breath out before you squeeze the trigger. Settle your posture," Lyn murmurs at Jonas. Old habits die hard.
Yup, it's one of the magazines with AP rounds in it. There are more sparks from Tavo's two targets, even as return fire wings past the prone giant, and this time one of the Centurions drops and Tavo shifts his weight behind the weapon, digging in his toes to slew the weapon around to engage new targets.
"Target down." Evan announces, rather dryly, to Charlie. "It isn't the humidity alone. The heavier gravity makes the atmosphere denser, harder shooting. It's normal in jungle conditions." He watches through the binocular before locating the next target. "5 meters east, about 2 meters north."
"Good shooting everyone! Second team - start advancing toward the tower. Praety, cover them - we'll do the same." Jayne orders.
Lyn takes her shot and it solidly strikes the Cylon's head, which starts sparking and smoking before Abigail's grenade reduces it to so many nuts and bolts. "You need more lessons, Bubbles," she quips to Jonas, before she moves out of cover to move towards the tower, taking a shot at one of the other toasters as she moves.
Cate hisses as a bullet zips through the log she's behind and makes a furrow in her thigh. A glance shows it's nothing major so she shifts targets to the one who seems to have its attention on her.
While his shot may not have been as effective as Lyn's, Jonas' shot strikes home on the Centurion's head. He starts to give the sniper a grin before his head suddenly snaps back when a bullet smacks against his helmet, shattering his helmet camera and he hears the orders from Jayne, though it's through a sudden case on tinunitis in his left ear before he turns to Abigail and moves to rise from his position to advance on the objective. "Come on, Walker, time to earn your paycheck. We'll cover, you set up the bomb!"
Abigail is indeed, third time lucky, as more of the cylons are chewed up by her grenade. But that's all she has in her bag of tricks that wont take more time than she has to work with, and so she starts moving her way towards the target, trying to help mop up the remaining cylons. She's still working with whatever cover she can find.
"Frak you and your jungle conditions." Welcome, Evan, to Working Charlie. Well, not even just Working Charlie. Charlie when she's not happy with the outcome of her work. She wriggles forward slightly to a somewhat better furrow, unhappy with where her elbows were set. Another adjustment to her scope and she shifts the angle of her rifle a fair ways. "Got 'em."
Another series of shots burst from her weapon, and Rothschild is feeling a bit of confidence move through her. Her mouth twitches just slightly with an almost-smile. Then she sweeps her machine gun around, focusing down its sights. "Three contacts in sight," she confirms. Then she focuses on the one trying to headshot their medic. She tilts her head slightly, opting again for a burst of focus on a single target.
Aldrich glances up from his focused attention on the targets when Jayne signals the other team to start in. "Anyone hit?" he checks in.
A riccochet comes pinging off one of the rocks Tavo is sheltering behind just as he pours more rounds into a pair of Centurions. One of them seems to have a charmed unlife, but the other goes down. The ricochet, however, slices across the back of Tavo's calf, its energy nearly spent but not quite entirely. It's enough to draw blood, and cause him to suck in a breath of pain. "Nothing serious."
"You still breathing, Bubbles?" Lyn asks Jonas through gritted teeth as she continues walking through the terrain in a sidestep, firing at the enemies while covering her team. Her shots strike the lighter armored Cylon she aimed at. "Stick to Walker and keep your eyes open for snipers. Fracking toasters learned how to camouflage their armor and shoot from hidden positions." Maybe she's worried about his helmet being damaged? Nah, can't be. She aims for it again.
Clearly, there's a reason it says EOD after her name. She's competent with a rifle, but it's really not where she shines, as Abigail doesn't even manage to get close to the target she was aiming for. But that doesn't really matter. If it helps someone else with more skill do the job, well, she'll spend all of her bullets on that. She tries for a second round.
Cate gets up when Abigail does, moving from tree to tree to cover her teammate. She fires but doesn't take the robot down. A bullet zips through the trees nearby but misses.
"Walker, don't worry about the tin cans, get those charges set up!" Jonas barks out as he sets up in a kneel near the EOD. "I'll keep you covered." Instead of trying to attack anyone, he's firing wild at their cover just to keep them pinned down while he waits for Abigail to start to set up for the explosions.
Rothschild grimaces. She hears chatter of movement, but she knows her job is to clear these Cylons out for the demolitionist. She narrows her eyes at the Cylon, and then she breathes in again, this time relaxing herself into the next series of shots.
"I don't think that's anything new. They were programmed to be soldiers, after all." Every time Tavo uses his body to brace the fire of his SAW, the bursts stretching longer as he hoses down the Cylon positions to try to keep them occupied, he draws in a little breath as his leg twinges, but he keeps at it, hammering rounds downrange. "Covering fire."
Aldrich frowns a little, without taking his eyes off the task at hand. "They /are/ learning new tactics though," he says, in response to Tavo's comment. "Best to stay ready for anything."
Lyn fires off her shots, continuing to trail behind the demolitionist and Jonas, putting herself between the visible enemies and the pair. Her shots all strike the Cylon's cover, but someone else manages to take it down. And then there were none. "All clear," she alerts the others.
"That's the problem with you people. Always waiting for the big kaboom." Yes, there's joking, in her tone, as Abigail manages a single final burst, seeing the last of the visible(!) cylons going down. She takes a moment, to shoulder her weapon, before she reaches out, a hand giving Jonas' hip a quick double-tap, announcing her departure, as she takes off at a low crouch. She just became perfect sniper fodder, a fact she well knows.
"Did you bring the right bullets?" Evan asks after a moment, looking through the binoculars, "Shots are on. Impacts are off." The commentary is made to Charlie while he's quietly watching.
Cate continues to follow Abigail, providing cover while the demo expert sets the charges. "Well that's what we're here for, isn't it?" she says, not following Abigail's remark.
"All right - we've got five minutes then we need to be moving toward the extraction point," Jayne says. "Walker, get those charges set. Team 1 and 3 - watch for reinforcements."
At the all-clear, Tavo makes his own scan of the area, then immediately clears his weapon and pulls the magazine, "Reloading." The half-empty mag is added to his belt, replaced with a full one. "Should we hit the AA with the book," was that a law joke? "on the way out?"
"Sometimes the build up is more fun than the explosion. Especially when enjoyed with others." Jonas responds to Abigail, holding his place. Once he feels the tap to his hip, there's a move with the engineer, keeping her covered - and being her meatshield while they move to the next target.
Jonas also gives Lyn a smirk and his response finally comes in the form of a Tauran salute - one middle finger in the air.
There's just a grunt in answer for Evan. "Unless the armory mislabeled them." Yes, yes she brought the right godsdamned bullets. Charlie squints down the scope and props herself up, sighting down to the comms tower. "That looks like the last of them. You see anything else, let me know. I'm going to look this thing over." Then she's rapidly breaking down the rifle, double-checking both the mag and scope. Primarily the scope.
Lyn takes up a position where she can use the scope on her rifle to watch for any movement around the installation. She returns Jonas' salute in kind.
Abigail glances up from her work, darting a look to Jonas, as he moves with her, and then pointedly to Lyn, "Is that what she said? Or you?" I mean, you don't get sort of hate from bzd champagne.
When the all clear comes through, Roths relaxes slightly behind her gun. She does not hear calls for medic or anything more dire. She watches the movement of Abigail, and she feels herself tense out of a strange, unidentified instinct.
"Long story short? Neither of us handled our planet falling to the Cylons well. She fled, I didn't." Jonas responds to Abigail, keeping the conversation between them. "It's cool though, I'm over it."
Abigail will never, never turn down a meatshield, and she moves quickly, making the most of the five minutes the Sergeant has given her. Long years of practice pay off, as she pulls the charge, sets the detonator, activates it and sets in only a few seconds, most of it on the run. As quick as she's moving, Jonas shouldn't have any trouble, give his longer stride and lower payload, "Is she? Might want to think about that, Ice Man." But probably not now, because explosives.
Ah if only she could hear what Jonas said. Lyn didn't flee per se, though it might have looked like it from Jonas' point of view. She lost her father, the most BAMF she ever knew, to the attack on Heim, and her worldview exploded on her. Anyone could die, including people cared about. So she shoved him, and everyone away. Including her mother and brother when they were on Libran. She stands there, watching for movement, especially in the jungle.
"She made her decision, Abbie." Jonas responds simply. "And like this tower, once it's down, rebuilding it isn't an option. How are we going with the set up?" he asks as they move from site to site.
Locking the magazine into place and the first round into the chamber, Tavo rolls into a seated position and then shifts to cover the flank, where any Cylons coming up trails from below might be coming out -- as best as he can tell from a glance over the area. He glances down at his calf for a moment, flexing his toes inside his boot to make sure he still has full movement. It hurts, but it's functional, and its not bleeding too bad, so he figures it can wait. Now he just needs to know if he's going to be putting a rocket into an AA-emplacement on the way out.
Evan glances at Charlie and then back out over the field. "You coulda grabbed anyone for spotter duty." Finally, getting to the reason he's annoyed. His eyes survey the jungle, both the location of the teams moving forward and even beyond to the horizon.
It doesn't take all of the allotted time, to set all of the charges, but it'll be close. Because better too many charges than too few. "Set the secondary frequency, and clear out with Ghost. Get as far from me as you can, so you've got a clear signal, don't need the interference." Again, that double-tap on his hip, as she turns back from where she was crouching, seeing Jonas' back to her first, and the rest of the team, including Ghost in the distance. And then she's moving to clear the area, "Fall back to cover, I don't need people taking chances." She's shaped the charges to explode inward, towards the heart of the tower, but there aren't any guarantees. "And don't look at it!" Deadpan, "You'll go blind."
Once everyone's clear, Abigail will detonate the charge.
Jayne echoes Abigail's instruction, "All right - fall back, but keep your guard up. There could be incoming at any time."
"I could've," Charlie agrees as she works on her rifle. She doesn't look up, but relies on Evan to let her know if anything needs her attention. "But I wanted someone I know I can trust." The magazine is finally loaded back into place. Yup, proper rounds. The scope is taking a bit more of her time to check over. As for the detonation? She won't stare directly, but the fun of being a sniper team is you get to watch from afar.
Lyn moves out when Abigail says to, keeping her rifle at the ready and moving her eyes constantly for any reinforcements. She's gone very, very silent, because now is the scariest time, when you can't SEE any enemies, and there are bombs set to go off behind you.
"That's what people say about all sorts of things." With the safety of the comm frequency rather than face to face, Tavo is willing to say it. He moves back as ordered, putting the rocks between himself and the explosion to come.
"You wanted someone you could trust." Evan echoes back to Charlie, moving to offer her a hand. "Charges are getting ready it looks like, we need to start falling back to extraction." He finally breaks attention from the horizon and looks to the Sniper.
Lowering his shaded visor, Jonas gives Abigail a sharp nod as he moves out. "Come on, Arda, we need to get clear before Walker blows the place." he mutters as he taps his radio. "Vanguard Lead, Indigo Four-One, site secure, carrying out the demolition. Prepare for extraction, over."
Cate snickers at Tavo's remark and then starts to fall back as well, limping just a little. Her eyes seek out Aldrich, relieved to see that he's up and walking, and she makes sure nobody else is injured badly.
Rothschild is already on the move before there's the call to pull back. She snorts when she hears the dirty joke on the comms from Tavo, and she responds with a wry, "Delgado, I'm shocked." Then she starts to join the others, though not before looking to Cate as she spots the limp. It almost causes her to be more thoughtful of her own limp that is coming back as the adrenaline fades.
Getting the scope loaded back on, Charlie pushes herself up from the mud and turns to look at Evan. She reaches out to grab the offered hand. "Yes, someone I could trust. What's wrong wth that?"
"Nothing." Evan says and manages a smile, tilting his head towards the ship as he leads the way, rifle up at the ready just in case anything crosses path.
Lyn moves to group up with the other team, and she moves to Aldrich to begin bandaging him with a frown. "You get nicked, Chaplain?" she asks. Her voice is strained, clearly the events of the mission have worn on her.
Tavo limps on his way out too as he works his way back to the rest of the squad. He clears his throat as his comment gets a snicker and a wry chastisement, glancing down and shaking his head. "Why so shocking? Doesn't everybody do it?"
"How are you supposed to hear why I'm called Bubbles if you're shot to hell, Corporal Rhodes?" Jonas asks, noticing the limp. "The Raptor is on the way for the pickup." he offersas he gestures to a nearby stump. "Let me wrap that for you."
There's a long look for Evan, but Charlie follows. She takes a moment to further dismantle her rifle from its sniper configuration. Better to watch their six on the way back to the meetup point to join with the others for the return to Vanguard.
"Clearly you haven't known me long if you think this is 'shot to hell'," Cate says dryly to Jonas. But once they're clear from the explosion, she does pause long enough for him to wrap it. "Thanks," she says. When the charges go, she can't help but jump a little at the kaboom, but then she's continuing back toward the Raptor.
If this were a Picon action double feature, there would actually be a shot of Abigail, walking away from the tower, flicking the detonator in her hand and then pressing down button with the kaboom like a flaming backdrop behind her. As things stand, it doesn't go down there at all. There is a big backdrop of flame, but the small Diver is actually crouched behind a very large rock until the all clear. And then she's heading back to the raptor.
Gustavo isn't precisely sure when the explosion is coming, so he flinches too, glancing over his shoulder as it goes off. He holds his breath a moment, touching the LAW on his back as if wondering if he has to go back, then shakes his head and falls back into line, limping his way toward pickup. "She collects lead," Tavo opines about Cate.
The blast causes her head to duck, and she even staggers back a step as she feels the rumbling of the aftershock. Rothschild breathes out a slow breath, grasping at her chest for just a moment. Then she shakes her head, and continues to move into pace with Gustavo and Cate. She isn't entirely sure of their topic, but she interrupts with, "I will drop off my laundry."