60 Days Until Reports And the Uncertain End (part 1)
Evester hissed into the night. The air stung at his skin and he felt the chill of the spring washing over him. It was supposed be getting closer to summer, not colder. Yet, he felt frigid. The light breeze washed over them. His hot breathe was white against the dark night and the light of thee stars.
“You good?” Rayda asked over intercom.
“Any sight?” Evester asked.
“Not yet.” Crass answered.
“Stay vigilant.” Evester knew that the Aralax were on their way. The Project would not lead them astray.
The battle was predicted to be a single night attack. If Evester could help it, he would ensure it was a single night. They had gathered all those who remained in the city, to a secure location in the city itself. They had been able to cut the population of the city from a million to a hundred thousand. It was a large jump in numbers but a hundred thousand people was still a big group. They remained in the city and all the planes to save them were away. If only Evester had one more day.
They had to make it through the night.
“Worried?” Karla asked.
There was a change in the trees, a flicker in the movement that had Evester cut off his words. He glanced about and listened. Nothing had changed, not the feeling or the pressure of the night but his gut instinct told him otherwise. He prepared to ignite his holoblade and signaled to the soldiers who were with him. “Eyes up. They’re here.”
Evester had less than a moment’s notice to say the words, before he saw the first figure in whole. With little time to react, Evester leapt forward, holoblade ignited. He rushed up to one of the Aralax and took off the head as his partner soldier killed the other.
“To the left.” Evester ordered, as the other soldiers chased after him. With each slight change, he directed his group.
Evester heard Karla and Crass giving orders on their ends. Rayda, who was in charge of the final line of defense, gave orders to everyone. Evester moved quickly through the night, listening to her tell him whether the traps were ready or not to be activated.
“Clear.” A soldier told Evester.
“Past the line.” Evester told Rayda, as he stopped running and turned to face where he had come from. The Horde of Aralax chased him in the night, eyes glowing and hisses clicking. There were many that were flying, but the trees were making their movement difficult, and while they could attack higher, Maverin had suspected that they could not fly too high into the sky. Their bodies required them to fly lower to the ground. Evester hoped it were true because he’d designed some of the traps with that in mind.
Evester heard the snap before he saw the flames ignite. The night sky was aflame in the bursts of oil and fire. The trap swung before Evester, lighting the world into sparks and towering fires. Shrieking Aralax cried out. In the shadows past the flames, Evester saw far too many Aralax that he and his team would never be able to kill on their own. Heart rate dropping to a slow, Evester backed up.
“To the next location.” Evester ordered.
He focused on the pounding of his feet and the way that the chill tingled through his spine. He focused on the warmth under his skin and the way it made his cheeks flush. He sat within the sensation and let his mind clear of all distraction. He raced on ahead, knowing that the first fire trap would only stop the Aralax for a bit.
Sliding under the rope, Evester skid to a halt once again as the soldiers raced past him.
“Clear!” A soldier said.
“Clear!” Evester repeated to Rayda. “Activating second line.”
“Understood.” Rayda said.
Evester looked back to the Aralax that chased them, and then he pulled out his gun and shot at the second trap’s activation. The ground gave out from under the Aralax, and they began to shriek again as they fell down. In the sky Aralax were cut down from the trees by spikes from the branches. Their calls were cut silent as tens tumbled down and the gap opened up for feet, creating a pit of spikes. Evester had gotten the city to assist him in collecting sharp metal rods and projectiles.
The whole of the forest and mountain side around them was a trap, set up to assist in cutting down the number of Aralax with the most amount of destruction possible.
There was an earthquake from the breaking mountain. Evester shook but kept his feet planted, glancing over to see the rockslide from the mountain side.
“Clear.” Crass called out signaling that his team was far enough away from it and ready to activate the next trap.
“Moving to location three.” Karla said, equally as competent with moving through the traps.
“Do we have numbers?” Evester asked looking at the Aralax that were trapped by the flames and the pit.
“The Drones are reporting soon. Hold on.” Rayda then spoke to the team managing the aerial surveillance of the situation. “Looks like we have a good one hundred more. At least.”
“Okay.” Evester glared into the darkness. He pulled out a flask from his pocket and then a match. Lighting the match, Evester drank from his flask of water, glaring down at the bodies. He tossed the flame into the pit and watched as the Aralax bodies were engulfed in flames.
“Don’t be too cruel now. Don’t forget we have cameras on.” Rayda reminded him. They also would be able to hear their communications. It was a part of being transparent that was important to them.
“I know.” Evester tried to imagine the live broadcast. The world would watch it delayed, in the event that something did go wrong, however he wanted to see their reactions to the monsters, and the fact that some people had been forgotten. “Have we heard from Uly?”
“I’m here.” Uly’s voice came over the communications in static.
“Oh. Excellent.” Evester laughed. “And Heia?”
“Her battle has not yet begun.” Uly told him.
“Don’t distract her. We’ll have this taken care of soon.” Evester flipped his flask back into his pocket. “And Zeydar?”
“The city is locked down, the attack on us will not matter.”
Evester did not believe that. This was the first massive offense of the Aralax. He shook Zeydar from his mind and focused on the battle again. Zeydar and Heia would be fine. He had to believe that. “Karla, after location three, move on to phase two.”
“Understood.” She called out as Evester signaled for his team to move again. This time they raced in, headed for the Aralax stragglers who had not been caught in the pitfall and tried to get around.