Starting File Sequence… Thunderbird
Loading Digital Data… Chapter Six
Initializing Play Back… Straight of Messina (Part 2)
Galaxy: Milky Way Galaxy
Cluster: Krogan DMZ
Date: 2186 CE
The quarian led the way down the hallway. When the doors opened they walked into a darkened room. They stood above on a raised balcony. Several floors below, a figure was restrained to a table. Her screams echoed throughout the room of several stories. Several batarians stood around the figure, including their leader. A cross beam prevented Tasi from seeing the figure’s face. Present as well were two Cerberus agents, the Sentinel and the Infiltrator they had seen from Omega. Only this time, the left arm of the Infiltrator was a mechanical replacement.
“What is going on!?” the Infiltrator shouted over the alarms and the screaming, “Why haven’t your men dealt with this yet?”
Just as she said this the stationed rumbled. The leader got on comms, “All teams report.”
The reports all came in, “zzz…crazy turian ploughing through…Krogan loose…zzz…cutting us to pieces…”
The Infiltrator shook her head. She turned to her comrade, “Paladin! Go deal with it. I grow tired of their incompetence!”
Paladin activated his shield and nodded. He turned to leave. The door opened and closed behind him. Not wanting to be outdone, the batarian leader sent some of the guards in the room to join Paladin.
The Infiltrator pointed at the figure screaming, “Shut up! You should be honored that we’ve come for you. You belong to Cerberus. We are taking you home.” She turned to the batarian leader, “We’re leaving. Your incompetence threatens the success of my mission. Prep her for travel and load her onto the shuttle immediately. Your payment will come from the Illusive Man once our business is complete.”
Appearing on the crossbeam above the group, Yatka deactivated his cloaking device. In his hands were his circled daggers. He was crouched. When Tasi attempted to open a comm with him, he looked over his shoulder and pressed a finger to his lips. In the next movement he jumped.
The assassin threw the daggers. As he landed on the floor, the daggers struck a guard in the shoulder and the other lodged into one of the arm restraints of the figure. He drew the sword hilt from his belt and, as it assembled, sliced at the Cerberus Infiltrator. She blocked it with her left robotic arm, drew a baton with her right, and slashed at him. Electric sparks flew as Yatka leaped back.
The batarian leader took several shots at him. Yatka flipped backward, over the restrained figure and landed on the other side. He reached over and pulled his second dagger out of the shoulder of the batarian he hit. The leader cried out in pain as he held his shoulder, a pink crossbow bolt stuck out of his shoulder.
The figure laying on the table ripped her hand out of the compromised restraint. She screamed and extended her hand toward the batarian leader. He started shaking uncontrollably. With quivering hands, he raised his gun to his head. Seeing she was outnumbered, the Infiltrator swore and ran out of the room, not wanting to stick around for the aftermath. The leader struggled against something unseen. Eventually, the figure closed her fist and the leader pulled the trigger. He collapsed to the floor, his gun clattering beside him.
Yatka got to his feet and undid her other restraint, “Wait here. I’ll secure us a way out of here.” After her hand was free, Yatka left the room.
Tasi jumped down and Ip followed after her. When she landed, she couldn’t move. Something forced her to her feet. She looked at the figure still restrained by the ankles. The girl was human, or at least partly. She couldn’t have been older than eighteen. Several parts of her being was replaced with robotic parts. Her skin was a cold yet beautiful shade of blue. The metal parts of her glinted in the light. Her entire right arm was robotic. It wasn’t like AVI’s humanistic features but a primitive version like something seen in early human prosthetic development. Her left hand was much closer to AVI’s even having close to the same shade of metal to match her skin. For her left leg, it was one of the old prosthetic running blades built on earth while her right foot was an elegant high-quality android model. Her face wasn’t spared either. The girl’ right eye was synthetic but her left eye was organic. Surrounding her organic eye was a metallic piece that surrounded it and continued to the back of her head and disappeared into the base of her skull.
The girl’s organic eye glowed blue. Tasi found it hard to move. Ip also shook as she fought against an invisible force restraining her.
“Please,” Tasi struggled to speak, “We’re here to help you.”
Two batarian’s ran into the room. The girl turned her attention to them, releasing Tasi and Ip from her control. She formed a biotic orb in her right hand and threw it blowing one of the batarian’s back into the door. Tasi drew her pistol and shot at the other. The girl looked at her before pointing at her ankles. Tasi and Ip worked at releasing the girl.
The station shook violently. The Emergency PA system announced, “Sections 5 and 6 have lost pressure. Stabilizers 4 through 8 are nonresponsive. The station is losing altitude and is falling into the planet. Please proceed to you nearest evacuation shuttle platform.”
“Sounds like our cue,” Ip chimed.
Ip looked over at the girl, “Are you going to be okay?”
The girl grunted and strode passed the two. She headed out of the room. When the doors opened, they saw several batarians lying dead on the floor. Yatka wasn’t kidding when he said he was going to clear the way. The girl took a few steps when a batarian appeared further down the hall ahead of them. Her eye glowed blue and the batarian grew unnaturally still. The girl jerked her head to the side.
“Th-he plat-tform is th-his way,” the batarian said as he walked ahead, showing them the way.
Confidently, the girl walked after him. Tasi and Ip followed after the girl as she walked down the hall. The batarian led them to an opened hanger. Inside the sounds of fighting could be heard. The girl’s power let go of the batarian and he ran away in terror. She charged screaming into the hanger where Yatka and the Infiltrator fought for the last shuttle.
The open backdrop of space as the hanger doors were opened for the evacuees. Pieces of the station were shed off as the structure began to fall into the planet.
The girl formed several floating orbs of biotic power and launched them at the Cerberus agent. Shadow did a backflip dodging both Yatka’s attack and one of the girl’s orbs. The second struck her in the chest, throwing her into the shuttle. The third missed the shuttle entirely. Shadow used her baton and threw it at the girl. The girl grabbed the baton in midair. Shadow pressed a button on her hand. The baton activated, setting off an electric shock causing the girl to drop to one knee. Ip ran forward and slid in front of the girl activating her omni-shield to protect them. The Infiltrator drew her gun and shot at Yatka.
The bullets passed through him much to easily. He stood still, not moving or crying out in pain. Movement caught Tasi’s eye from on top of the shuttle. Yatka leaped off and threw both of his daggers at the Infiltrator. One of the blades struck by the Infiltrator’s head drawing her attention. The other struck her robotic arm when she defended herself. The holographic version of Yatka flickered and disappeared.
Glass shattered from an overhead window as two figures fell with a thud to the ground. Sentinel fell on his back then rolled onto his knees. Before him was the krogan. He propped his hammer on his shoulder.
“I told you to deal with this!” Infiltrator called, “Not bring down the entire station into the planet!”
Sentinel got to his feet. He activated his shield. His right arm glowed with biotics. He slowly looked over his shoulder, “Working on it.”
The krogan wielded his hammer and slammed it into Paladin’s shield. Tasi ran toward Paladin. She slid on the ground and fired her gun. Paladin raised his right arm, lifting Tasi up with biotic power and threw her to one side. Ip dodged and ran up behind the krogan. She ran up his back and leapt. Using her crossbows, she shot behind Paladin. The bolts struck the shield and exploded. The explosion brought Paladin to his knees.
The Infiltrator grabbed the dagger lodged in the shuttle and threw it back at Yatka. The biotic girl shook off the electric shock and charged at Shadow. The girl punched and kicked while Infiltrator managed to duck and evade. Infiltrator suddenly disappeared only to appear and kick the girl in the side. Yatka jumped over her, sword raised and brought it down on the Infiltrator. She drew another baton and parried. The Infiltrator kicked out, getting Yatka in the chest.
The whole station rumbled, knocking everyone off balance. In the distance, a large piece of the station floated off into space. It wasn’t long now before the whole station would be crushed in the gas giant’s atmosphere.
Infiltrator turned to Sentinel, “We don’t have time for this!”
Sentinel shot to his feet, moved shield to the side sliding the krogan’s hammer off to one side. His right arm glowed with an intense bright glow. He slammed his fist into the floor. The energy released blew everyone back away from him. Tasi struck the back wall. Sentinel drew his assault rifle and shot at the kinetic barrier generators on either side of the large hanger doors. Quickly, he activated his magnetic boots and grabbed Infiltrator before she was pulled out to space. He brought down his shield at an angle, protecting them from the debris flying toward the open space.
Tasi felt herself being pulled toward the opened hanger doors. She frantically grabbed at anything around her but to no avail. Tasi crashed and tumbled off Sentinel’s shield and flew off into space.
She breathed frantically as she tumbled head over heels. The jetpack on her back pulsed frantically in an attempt to stabilize her flight. Looking back at the hanger, it was empty except for the Cerberus agents. The agents made their way to the shuttle, started it up and used it to get off the station.
Tasi’s comm cracked to life, “Coming in!”
A Cerberus shuttle flew up to them, the door opened and a familiar figure stood inside. Vicia reached out and pulled Tasi into the shuttle. The moment she passed through the door, the artificial gravity pulled her down. With Tasi safe, Vicia jumped out into the void. Tasi scrambled to her feet and climbed into the pilot seat.
Tasi was about to pilot the shuttle to look for the others when there was motion in the back. Yatka threw his girl companion into the shuttle. Tasi looked back. The girl was expose to the full cruelty of space. She lay motionless and cold.
Yatka turned to Tasi, “Get us back to the ship!”
“Not without the others!” Tasi shouted back.
Yatka was about to say something when the girl moved. The assassin turned to care for her. Sections of the station exploded in the distance, throwing debris out into space. There was a cascade of explosions as the station crumbled under the gas giant’s gravity. Pieces of metal flew passed the shuttle.
The shuttle dipped suddenly. Yatka jumped out of the way as a massive krogan was thrown into the shuttle. Ip closed the shuttle door behind them as Vicia jumped into the driver seat beside Tasi.
“Let’s go!” Vicia called.
Tasi turned the shuttle away from Vard.
The turian input something in the system, “This is Vicia to Thunderbird! I need your location now!”
“And ‘ere I thought we’d ‘ave nothin’ to do but jack all,” Kritt said.
AVI spoke, “We have locked onto your signal.”
“Open the cargo bay doors!” Vicia yelled, “We’re coming in hot. Get ready to jump out of the system as soon as possible!”
“Affirmative,” AVI said.
Tasi maneuvered through the debris field. Metal scrapped on metal as she sped through the tight places. Ahead of them there was a flicker in the darkness. The Thunderbird flew toward them. Tasi looked over at Vicia. The Turian nodded.
Tasi then looked over her shoulder at the others, “Everyone brace!”