“I have a confirmed contact, Eve.”
“Acknowledged, Nightwing.” She replied. “Alright, War-Children: This is it!” Her hunting party ducked down into the shelter of a ruined building, blending in with the shadows seamlessly.
“Assessment report, Nightwing.”
“Delaque. I count eight, at 11 O'Clock. Some are on the ground, some are up on the buildings.”
“Any heavy support?”
“They appear to have a heavy stubber.”
“And they are aware of us?”
“Undoubtedly. They’re keeping a watchful eye in our direction.”
Eve cursed inwardly. The residents of the underhive had probably reported seeing the War-Children to the Delaque gang. The fact that the gang was ready for them would make it a tricky battle indeed. Although the War-Children had Spyrer training, they had no field experience at all, whereas the Delaque gangers were all seasoned veterans of the underhive.
Eve contemplated retreating, but dismissed the notion. She had been prepping the team for too long, and they were growing impatient for some real action. Besides, what better way to make a rep for themselves than to take on a fully established gang that was ready for them? The War-Children could become legends, assuming they survived their first ordeal.
“Alright, then. War-Children! Are you prepared to face your fates?” Eve asked, steeling herself for the battle to come.
“Affirmative.” Replied Vixen. The others agreed. Eve was relieved to find that none of their voices were corrupted with fear or uncertainty.
“At the signal, we advance directly forward. Vixen and I will circle around that tower’s left side, while the rest of you will circle around the right side. Stay in the cover at the base of the tower until you hear the signal. And try to stay together as much as possible!” Eve ordered them. Her plan was to keep the two Jakara’s on the left side, the side that was more exposed to enemy fire, because of their protective shields. Lobos and Feral, the two Malcadons, would take the right side and try to flank the Delaque gangers, with Nightwing as backup.
Eve glanced at her hunters one last time, then shouted, “Now!”
Eve and Vixen raced forward, side by side. They passed through the remains of a door and ran to the base of the tower, hiding among some water tanks. Eve watched Lobos and Feral race by in their own turn. Their long strides and quick pace took them halfway around the tower before they stopped to take cover. Nightwing swooped down behind them, silent, like some sort of winged death.
They all paused as one, waiting for the sound of gunfire to erupt around them. It remained silent. Eve realized that her opponents were saving their ammo for a clear shot. Too bad we’re not going to give them a clear shot, she thought. “Let’s go!” she hissed at Vixen. As soon as she left the cover of the tanks, she heard the roar of the heavy stubber. It tore holes in the ceramite around her, but not a single shot hit her: She was too fast. Within seconds, she was safely crouching behind a low wall at the base of the tower, and Vixen beside her. The other members of the Delaque gang opened fire, and bullets started pounding into the wall and all around them.
“No casualties yet,” announced Eve over her com-link. “But we are under heavy flak!”
Vixen, who was not as well protected as Eve, was in serious danger. Bullets whizzed by her face and shotgun blasts splattered all around her. She managed to deflect a lasgun shot with her shield, but it left her open. With a cry of pain, she was hit by a boltgun and went down.
“Eve! What happened?!” Nightwing cried with a twinge of panic.
“Vixen’s been hit!” Eve answered.
Eve was about to grab Vixen and pull her to safety, but Vixen managed to crawl into the cover of the wall by herself. Eve was startled to find no visible wound on Vixen’s person.
“Vixen! Are you hurt?” She asked.
“I’m fine…the armor stopped it." Vixen grunted, "I’ve just got an aching set of ribs right now.”
Eve breathed a sigh of relief, but this near brush with death still brought the severity of the situation to light. “We need to get to them, get close where their guns won’t do them any good. Be prepared to move!”
The spray of gunfire paused for a short moment, but that moment was all they needed. As Eve shouted the command to move, the War-Children sprang to life like a war machine. Jinking left and right, Eve and Vixen managed to evade the large quantity of bullets being fired at them. With a final leap, Eve met one of the Delaque gangers in hand to hand combat, while Vixen did likewise along side her. The rest of the gang, a floor above the two being seiged by Eve and Vixen, stood ready, their guns now quiet in fear of hitting their comrades.
Meanwhile, Lobos charged one of the gangers on the other side while Feral and Nightwing provided some supporting fire for him. His opponent, apparently an inexperienced juv, fired a pistol at him as he approached, but Lobos zig-zagged back and forth in such an erratic pattern that the juv couldn't hit him. Lobos gave one final boost of speed and he was upon the juv, cutting him down in a quick slash to the side.
Vixen was no where no near as successful as Lobos. Perhaps she made a careless mistake, or maybe it was because of the pain in her ribs, but she failed to hit her opponent. He quickly responded by pulling out a knife and attacking her. She was taken by surprise and was forced into a defensive posture.
Nearby, Eve was doing her best against her first ganger opponent. Though her opponent was skilled, she was always a bit better. He did manage to evade most of her blows, but finally, she cut him down with a slash with her monosword to his chest.
The rest of the gang, disheartened at their losses and frightened by the War-Children's prowess in hand-to-hand, began a hasty withdrawal. Eve laughed in amusement as she gave the orders for the War-Children to disengage. “I believe the War-Children have won a name with this battle!” She said. “The pathetic Delaque gangers fled without even putting up a real fight!”
“I agree.” Said Lobos. “Mine hardly put up any sort of fight at all, though I wish I had time to finish what I started.”
“Don’t worry about it, Lobos.” Replied Eve, “You’ll have plenty of chances in the future, because the War-Children are definitely going to be seeing a lot of action.”