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Central Europe

© 1999-2001 Imminent Storm of NEWST.

Chapter Five: Continuing Mystery

After about an hour or so of hiking south from the lake, Team Thunder came across a small abandoned pre-Collapse village. The village looked uninhabited for years; the houses and buildings were all overgrown with various plants and vines. The village also showed signs of armed conflict. There were small craters that looked like light cannon impacts. Exposed concrete and brick were marked by blackened areas and bullet holes. One house even looked as if it had been blown apart from the inside. All in all, the place had an eerie feel about it.

"Alright...we'll set up camp here," Richard announced after a thorough search of the area. "Make sure we are clear, I don't want any surprises."

Lisa openned the equipment package for the team, and withdrew a small case about the size of a suitcase, labelled 'ECM and scanning equip'. About 5 minutes after setup, Lisa began reciting the information readout. "There's no ED air-detection radar at all, so no one detected the module. There seems to be some electronic equipment about 5 miles southwest of here, it appears to be a cluster of ground sensors. We are clean here."

"Good; set up some passive sensor equipment, video and audio only."

The rest of the day was a flurry of activity; video and audio equipment were set up, and several "pre-fab" structures were erected to serve as their home base. Confirmation of their position identified the sensor cluster to the southwest as their target, the missle silos. They would head there in the morning. Everyone then turned in for the night in their individual barracks, which were no more than glorified tents.

The last to go to bed was Richard; he stayed outside for some time after lights-out, looking into the sky. He recalled the horror of hearing of the demise of Alpha base, and the frantic escape from Beta base, as NEXUS exercised its nuclear muscle. He couldn't let history repeat itself.

Meanwhile, back on the front lines....

In daylight, the steel doors to what seemed to be an underground bunker could be examined in detail. They were massive; 15 feet tall and 25 feet wide. The doors also bore an insignia that did not match any known organization (even the ED) . The examination was cut short, as everyone took cover from a group of ED bombers.

The Wyvern Stormbringers that were assigned to defend the examination crew managed to fry about half of the enemy bombers when they made their first pass. As the rest bugged out, several more were shot down, doing only superficial damage with their low-yield cluster bombs. Examination resumed shortly afterwards.

Images of the unkown insignia where sent to HQ for comparison with the the rather-impressive pre-Collapse database, compiled in recent months with new finds and discoveries made in Project territory. The insignia consisted of a large solid circle with four triangles, pointing outwards, evenly spaced around it. HQ responed in a few hours saying that it matched with a group known as The New Dawn.

The New Dawn was a pre-Collapse militia group that operated in the eastern France and western Germany areas. After NATO collapsed and Europe fell into economic turmoil, many such groups appeared. Many of them were backed by wealthy, re-emerging aristocrats who now found themselves losing their financial grip. Many thought that by raising armies of militia, they could take over the national governments and ensure their own power. However, they fought amongst themselves and other militant terrorist groups, and did not get anywhere. This led to several nuclear terrorist attacks by all sides. The chaotic era that the world was thrust into lead to rash actions such as the NASDA system being buit--an overreaction to an imagined threat. This also openned the door for ambitious, power-hungry men such as Dr. Reed to attempt to gain control.

Could the Leader of the ED be one of these power-mongers who sought to take control by military force? Why did they not want us to find this New Dawn installation? Sometimes, answers lead to just more and more questions. Only time will tell; the next morning, HQ gave authorization to attempt to gain entry to the bunker.