[A/N: Just an idea I had when I wrote the HL Drabbles. Seemed that it deserved a separate story.]

Boots crunched in the gravel as soldiers patrolled around the area while Airwatch covered them from the skies. The whirring of Scanners and a few Manhacks permeated the area, risking their chance of not getting spotted. In contrast to the entire buzz outside, the silence in the building was deafening. You could hear a drop of sweat roll off someone's nose and splatter onto the floor. Everyone had their hands to their mouths, afraid that their breathing would endanger the entire facility.

All of a sudden, a lone Scanner peered through the crack of a boarded up window. It eyed the empty blackness of the building, wary of any possible threats. In an instant, it detected movement. Covering up its main camera, it activated Second Recon mode. Three laser beams were emitted from the front end of the machine, panning the entire room. The tenants inside moved away as it grew close to them, fully aware that the Scanner was completely blind. As the scan was finished, the lasers retracted and the mechanical eye whirred back to life. It slowly backed out the window when all of a sudden, someone sneezed…

The mechanical eye activated its alarm system, announcing its find to Overwatch. Soon, the area would be breached.

"We've been spotted, go loud!" commanded one Rebel as he shot down the recon Scanner.

All the lights inside the warehouse were turned on, revealing around a dozen or so rebels and refugees. One man darted toward a switch on the wall and flipped it. Two flood lights outside blinded the soldiers. Immediately after, a faint whirring sound started. It grew louder and louder until it exploded into the sound of plasma being fired.

The Autogun was now on.

It tore through the soldiers stupid enough to be standing directly in front of it. Bodies fell as the other survivors took cover between wrecked cars and debris. They were soon quickly dispatched by manned guns. After the battle was over, one man wielding an AR2 turned to his fellow Rebels and said, "Good job gang, another disaster averted."

Somewhere between the dead bodies and scrap metal, lay a dying Combine soldier. He slowly crawled his way towards one of his dead comrades, and retrieved a small handheld radio. He depressed a button to the side, and with all the strength he still had, radioed Overwatch.

"Infection confirmed…"

"Fortification is unreachable…"

"Request immediate dispatch of Covert Operatives…"

The guard was already dead as Overwatch responded.

"Request confirmed. Reinforcements are in transit."