The first question every trainee asks without fail is what Cryo feels like.
Instructors would alway give the same answer without fail: Cold.
And it would always get a laugh from those same nervous young trainees.
But once those trainees stepped into the tube that laughter was replace by cold hard uncertainty. There was little space in that tube barely enough to lift your hands to you face. When the hiss of the coolant started is when that uncertainty turned to fear. The cold was unnatural it seeped into your bones, it penetrated your very being and urged you to close your eyes. Begged you to. Some resisted, thrashed in their pods until they were dragged unwillingly into the darkness.
For me? Faster than falling asleep.
-Interview of UNSC First Sergeant Vincenzo Nicastri
-UEG Galactic news
Faster than falling asleep.
The worst part of Cryo?
His eyes fluttered, desperately trying to fight off the long sleep his body just endured. His ears were ringing and his hearing muffled, common side effect of Cryo. His limbs numb and bile rising in his throat he forced the pod open and retched into the grate below him, falling to his knees in the process. Around him various personnel and techs were running around some screaming others bleeding and still others dying.
He was suddenly yanked up and a tech was screaming at him, blood leaking from his temple. His words were drowned out by the ringing that still assailed his ears. Whatever message he wanted to give was cut short by a piece of steel the size of a forearm burying itself into the techs head. The blood that splattered his face and body seemed to snap him out of his post Cryo haze. The sounds of pain and fear and death assailed his ears, klaxons wailed and the ships AI Agrippa repeating over and over one sentence.
"ALL HANDS ABANDON SHIP!"
He stumbled to his locker trying to side step the wounded and dodge anymore lethal projectiles. Throwing on his under suit, BDUs and armour took under a minute. The result of ten years of service. Vacuum rated and protected by titanium grade plating he ran side stepping men and women he had known for years. Every instinct telling him to stop and help. But he knew his duty.
ODSTs had to secure a landing for the survivors.
As he ran past a row of life boats he saw a marine waving a rifle and backing into an empty pod by himself around him a dozen crew begging to not be left behind. He didn't hesitate, he wiped his pistol out and fire blowing the mans trigger hand apart and letting the rest of the crew to subdue him and board.
He kept running.
He bust into the drop room to see hundreds of ODSTs trying to assemble their kits and launch. Still running he slid by his pod and ducked his head inside to check his gear. One SRS 99 AM Sniper rifle, one M5AK carbine with a 3.4x scope and silencer, one M7 Caseless SMG with a holo sight, silencer and a 25mm grenade launcher and a pack of two frags and flash bangs. Content he sat in his pod and started launch procedures. He slid down the canopy, sealing it with a hiss, and primed the drag chute. Connecting himself to the command network. It's message was brief and terrifying.
-:Covenant cruiser engaged:-
-:All hands abandon ship:-
-:Planet below, ODSTs Launch ASAP:-
-:We'll hold em off boys:-
-:It's been an honour:-
-:Captain Jim Raynor:-
He needed no further instructions moving his pod outside the ship he sent up a silent prayer for the captain before hitting the launch command. The acceleration was intense, if not for his straps he would have been plastered against the ceiling. Around him scores of pods and life boats descended upon the planet, a planet that was distinctly colonized to the point where every inch was covered in cityscape. Above him the UNSC Alpharius Destroyer was dying, it's armour rent and oxygen bleeding, flames cover vast swaths of the once mighty warship. It's opponent a slick and almost organic like cruiser of blue and purple. Plasma kept from its turrets only to impact against the Alpharius moments later.
That's when his pod was hit.
By some miracle the plasma hadn't burned through the hull but nearly glanced off shearing the coms array and the pods IFF away. He looked for the source of the shot and saw a swarm of banshees, hundreds of them. Each one piloted by a split jaw baying for human blood. They got it. The banshees cut down the fleeing pods and all he could do was beat his fists against the three inch thick reinforced view panels screaming unheard obscenities and cursing the very existence of alien life. He watched for a full five minutes as every pod was destroyed.
In some cruel twist of fate the earlier hit had torn his IFF off leaving him virtually invisible to covenant sensors. So while he got to live he was forced to witness every last soul he knew and lived with for the past three years die.
Above him the Alpharius was consumed in a blazing fireball.
As he hit the atmosphere he caught a glimpse of a half dozen ships approaching the covenant cruiser. Then the sight was gone and replace by a vast city stretching all the way to the horizon. There was no real space to land safely except for an open courtyard in front of a large rectangular building.
As he guided the pod toward it he muttered curses under his breath promising death and eternal damnation to every thrice cursed xeno he met.
So forgive him when, after landing and droping the pods door, he was greeted by a very brute like creature he opened fire.
The first 'chapter' more of a prologue really. About three hours of work. Going to be alternating updates with Cosmic Dust. Definitely a better start than First Contact if I do say so my self, and by that I mean actually written all by my self without the use of google translate and friends to help my previously broken English. Hope you like expect fairly quick updates possibly even regular.
Never really realized how much I missed this.