(AUTHOR'S NOTES: So, that was exciting, time to build up and get to know our characters better before the next mission, enjoy Ciassou!)
Reach Time: 12:21
Date: January 14th 2552 (4 months and 3 days before Reach falls)
Location: UNSC Stronghold Storm Control (Formerly UNSC/ ONI Research Facility Outpost 4-Delta 5-0.5-Charlie) Medical Wing
I opened my eyes slowly, groaning as they adjusted to the light. Ellen was standing over me; Tanja on one side and Rodriguez on the other. Looking down I saw I’d been stripped of my armour and groaned more as my body felt slow, sluggish and unresponsive. “Where…where am I?” I asked my mouth dry and jaw aching. I wasn’t sure what had happened and I felt slight dazed but Ellen ever looking over me placed a finger on my lips. “You shouldn’t rush yourself,” she whispered smiling at me “You lost a lot of blood; we had to sedate you in order to help the regeneration you’ve been out for over twenty-four hours Orso.”
Ellen didn’t have her helmet on however her red and white armour almost like an ambulance assaulted my senses like a tank; her white hair and red eyes also freaking me out slightly in my slightly disorientated state. She laughed and Rodriguez slapped me on the chest: “Still alive Bear?” he asked mockingly “You should’ve heard yourself crying like a baby!” The three of them laughed together as I eased myself to a sitting position. “Whoa, really?” I said falling back down. It turned out the only one with their helmet still on was Tanja; Rod’s face was round with a slightly curly mop of hair and great big blue eyes. He laughed once again as I lay back, his whole aura was soothing though for a big guy he seemed to be the most gentle person in the world. Tanja though, looked solemn and didn’t even meet my gaze. “So, still, where am I?”
“Storm Control Medical Wing, silly!” yelled Ellen all excited “Welcome to our new home-!”
“Ouch, headache here.”
“Oh, sorry Orso.” Replied the little white haired girl as she checked my scans over once again; she nodded so I guessed they were okay but something was bothering me. Tanja still seemed on edge and as my huge green eyes opened fully I also noticed someone else was in the room. Asleep at the foot of my bed, helmet still on was Commander Cyph3r. I smiled, again moving myself into a sitting position. Only this time succeeding and startling the poor Commander awake. “WHAT!?” he yelled to the assembly randomly only to be met with a mass amount of laughter. I laughed too although my shoulder throbbed. “So, this place is already functioning?” I queried “Already?” The four Spartans looked around and it was Ellen who broke the silence, I could already tell that the little bubbly lass was a large fan of her own voice: “Well, yeah, with almost the whole of the Orchestral moved in we were operational by midnight including Medical, Control and Communication wings. I’m pretty impressed myself!” She giggled and I nodded, I couldn’t deny it I was impressed but as I licked my own wounds; another more painful question nagged in the back of my head…
“And the ODSTs…?”
No one dared to answer me, they all looked to one and other for the answers. I looked eagerly but none of them spoke until Cyph3r interjected, as he often did, this time only rather sombre in his tone “All gone.”
I began to sink, almost blame myself instantly; was it a bad call to split the group into two teams, or to even separate from the ODSTs at all? I didn’t know but I looked down, clutching at my blanket. “It wasn’t your fault Bear,” said Rod patting my hand “You made some good calls and did well Kiddo, remember that. We erected a memorial on the North Hanger for all of them, we found out every single name.” He waited for my nod of approval and with that continued to what else he knew I wanted “Their funerals are a couple of days away, no armour allowed so we have to suit up, been a while for me, hear you’re getting a medal as well,” he saw me not care about the medal and he sunk his own head to “Xiang’s also on that Brown Spartan’s trail him and Mallik won’t get far; I can’t believe we came into contact with a rogue Spartan…”
The whole room went quiet.
“Well believe it,” said Cyph3r “It happened. I’m glad you’re still with us Kid- I mean Bear.” I smiled as Cyph3r corrected himself “Anyway, we’ve got to report, they’ve gathered together a report of the mission; we have to go watch what a bummer…” He tapped the side of his helmet and Rod rose to his feet leaving me with the two women. It wasn’t long before Ellen had to leave to look at other patients to, she said I could bell her anytime I needed but I didn’t think I would. I was over the worst of it; it was just tense between me and this Tanja. I hardly knew her but she made me nervous and that was truly scary.
“I never got to thank you-“
“Seriously though, you were-“
“Doing my job.”
I looked up at her rubbing my eyes and I just heard her sigh. My head sank again. She was obviously going to leave soon as well but the purple armoured female made no move to go. Instead she looked around, shut the door and she put her hands on either side of her helmet. She proceeded to remove it and from under it shook out long flowing brown hair and she just smiled beautifully at me. “Whoa.” I gasped.
“Shut up you.” She said laughing as she put the helmet down on my bedside table and sat down beside me once again. “You’re strong Orso, if you were a girl, I would have you on my team, not saying your very masculine or anything though.” She hit me in the bad arm and I let out a whimper. “Oh shit! I’m sorry!”
I smiled and so did she. It was quite nice, her company as well as her smile. We just looked at each other occasionally meeting each others’ gaze and locking eyes if even for a split second. “Well, I was wondering if I could show my appreciation…” I said blushing slightly as I cam out with probably the cheesiest chat-up line ever. “Oh really?” she replied looking at me, our head naturally magnetising towards each other; leaning ever so slowly towards each other, eyes closing and lips pursing. My heart was racing, I couldn’t stop and she was getting oh so close, I could feel her there almost on top of me. My heart skipped a beat…
“HELLO!” yelled John laughing nastily as the two of us jumped away from one and other, heads turned in opposite directions and cursing him numerously. “Look at this!” he said almost excited as he brought up a large viewing screen depicting something that I recognised being lodged in my arm at one point; a crossbow blot. In fact, THE crossbow bolt. Johnathon was actually all a flutter with excitement over the revelation he was about to tell me. I looked at him rather blankly as MUSE COMPANY, Tartarus and Xiang all followed suit through the door “Some party I don’t know about?” I asked grumpily having just missed the chance of a lifetime.
“No, dick, shut up and listen!” yelled John pointing my attention back to the viewing screen “This, my friend, this is a beauty!” he was shrilling almost at the top of his voice as he played this delightful role of teacher to me “It’s made of an artificial super-resonating alloy that thanks to the continuous vibration causes the tip to spin like a drill and burrow deeper into the target. This is an awesome bit of kit, shield repellent and adjustable heads to give you a desired amount of effects. This crossbow weapon is something I’d like to use.” Tanja laughed and John stared viciously at her. I looked up “Any idea where it came from?”
“I’m following up some leads,” came Xiang a dwarf among giants in the small hospital room; however, her aura was that of a giant “Nothing yet.” She turned and left briskly as if she was going back to the search. I looked at the others; I was already bored. “Hey,” yelled Xiang back at us “Let Orso rest, we’re going to need him if we find out Mallik and this “Renuku’s” whereabouts. Also, we have Noble team coming to visit…”
There was a chorus of groans as every left but it wasn’t because of that. A Noble thing meant one thing, they were going to try and take control and if I knew Cyph3r it would end in a war. The same could’ve been said of T whom was the only one stood left, her helmet in hands “How about…” she murmured “After you’re out of here…”
“we go get something to eat?”
“Yeah sure,” she said “Why not?”
She spun around and left out the door, leaving me all alone…