Fiorina. ‘Fury’ 161.
2183. December 05
“Boom.” The office door flies open and Turock rushes in backwards stopping it from swinging back into him with his boot, both hands holding the Corporal, the rest of his body is being carried in by Grimm. The Private First Class himself can smell nothing but blood, his nose clogged up with that copper twang so familiar to him, all three of his cloned limbs get goosebumps with the next thought. ‘Unknown Xenomorph?’ Is what the Lance Corporal had said did this to the Corporal, their leader, a vicious hole punched right into and out of his skull.
“Over there.” Turock says gesturing to the smaller of the two desks in the room. Grimm nods, lowering both legs before moving to the table and with one arm slides everything off, papers, files and stacks of foam cups go sprawling everywhere. The pair of marines then place the Corporal's limp body up onto the table and step away. Turock turns as the dog comes in “Panting.” Grimm just looks at it confused knowing he has not seen or heard of any canines on the compound, but more pressing issues are at hand. ‘The Corporal is dead.’ Turock crouches down to meet the animal, greeting it with a scratch of its lice ridden fur and pushes it away when it comes in for a lick. Grimm crosses his arms, spotting the company agent as she enters. ‘Still pale.’ He knew the look on her face all too well. ‘Fear.’ Turock looks at her and so does the dog, all eyes follow her as she avoids the blood trail at her feet. Sarah keeps her head low, vision totally off of the body on the table. ‘Seen enough gore...’ With a single hand held up to her mouth she crosses the room and takes a seat behind the main desk. The company agent is quick to grab the box of cigarettes beside the monitor, she lights one and with each deep inhale and long exhale her mind tries to wrap around ‘What the heck is happening on this planet!’ The two marines and dog turn their heads, the company agent jolts and turns the moment Billy slams into the doorway. “Panting.” Heavier than the dog, the convict rests on the door for a moment before his legs buckle and he slides down and takes a seat, clutching his chest, clearly trying to catch his breath he wipes the sweat from his face with the chest of his overalls. “Yeah… I’m fine…” Billy croaks sarcastically lifting one arm, hand in the air briefly before it falls into his lap. Grimm could see he was ‘Not a threat, for now?’ And the Lance Corporal doesn’t seem worried by his presence at all, but he keeps the YY chromo in his peripherals just in case.
“So….” Grimm says breaking the silence and unfolding his arms. “A Xenomorph?” Addressing the Lance Corporal directly who stands.
“A Xenomorph…” Turock answers, Grimm hated the word, the fancy way of saying ‘Alien shaped thing.’ To him it was the nostalgia of dead teammates and the loss of three limbs, right now the proof of one of these is lying right on the table, the other three, an arm and two legs are attached to him. “That is correct.” Turock says glancing at the body of his commander then over toward Sarah who does not look back, the company agent hasn’t looked over since Billy arrived. The original plan was to pump her for information, but he knew from her reaction upon seeing the Corporal, her screaming, that ‘She knows nothing.’ The woman's head is held in her hands whilst she smokes. “We need a full regroup, right now…” Turock says facing Grimm. “Are Vasquez and Ratzach back yet?”
“That’s a no, you want me to get them on Comms, give them the heads up?”
Turock thinks for a second. ‘Vasquez is going to freak when she finds out about the Boss.’ With a nod “Get an ETA on their return and tell them to be on guard for a Xenomorph, standard tactical procedures to be followed immediately, this is not a drill…” Turock pauses. “You may have to repeat that to her.” ‘Everything is a joke to her at first.’ “And tell them to hustle but don’t mention the Corporal, I’ll tell her.” Turock knew how highly Vasquez thought of Plissken, the cliche father figure she never had and now he is gone, with her sister Janette KIA almost three years ago now. ‘She is not going to take this well.’ Then it hits him, the very fact that both of these people in her life have now perished under exacting circumstances. ‘Xenomorph infestation.’ Turock knew that this will be sure to not only cut at her deeper, but it will leave a gaping, weeping wound, prone to infection. Grimm moves, rounding the main desk he stops in front of Sarah.
“You good chick?” Grimm asks looking down at her.
“I…” Sarah says blowing smoke, she looks up at the marine.
“It’s going to be okay.” Grimm says, lying to her of course before looking over the radios in the pigeon holes behind the desk. “Which one of these is connected to the others. Vasquez and your company guy?”
“Erm…” Sarah says wiping her face. “None… None of them are, I was…” She stops and stares up at him.
“What is it?” Grimm asks
“I was… I was connected to the Corporal.” Having to say his rank brings back the images of his body and the blood that came with it, having followed behind the trail all the way into the office. Grimm looks over at the Lance Corporal who had heard her and in response moves over to the Corporal's side, a quick search of his body. “It’s not here… The Mess Hall?” Turock says, knowing where it is. “Go get the radio, brief the others and grab Elson.” Grimm nods at his orders then turns to Sarah, she almost looks worried for him, he nods trying to look reassuring but his face always shows an ounce of pain, always and he starts to leave the room when the “Roar!” Of a Pulse rifle burst gets all of their attention, everyone thinking the same thing.
“Woof, woof, woof.” The dog starts barking and everyone looks at everyone, then Grimm looks at Turock.
“That’s coming from the Infirmary…” Grimm says and with that Turock grabs his SMG with one hand whilst silencing the dog with the other.
“We need to get to him now... You.” Turock says pointing at Billy sitting in the doorway. “Get up your coming with us, and you.” Turock says pointing to the dog. “Stay here and guard the company lady.” He finishes pointing at her.
“Woof.” The dog barks and sits.
“Company lady.” Turock says turning without pointing. “Stay here, lock the door behind us and don’t move until we return.”
“You’re going to just leave me here… With the body? With that thing out there...” Sarah says arms out, cigarette ash falls.
“Trust me mam, you need to stay put.” Turock says, not wanting to tell her what he saw specifically, even if the evidence of what it can do is on full display next to all of them.
“He’s right.” Grimm says. “I know you can handle yourself, so do that from here.” Grimm unholsters his side arm and puts it on the desk. “Safeties off.”
Sarah looks at the pistol, this firearm is more her size than the rifle practised with Grimm earlier and she has used something similar on a company range back in the day. “Thank you.” Sarah says hoping. ‘They are right.’ And that she will be safe here. ‘With a dog.’ And she starts to smoke.
“Lets go, come on get up you right now.” Turock says to Billy as he gets to the doorway without slowing down, he knows how much danger Elson is in right now. ‘And he’s a Rookie.’
“Argh, Hey my arm man! Fuck.” Billy yells as the marine grabs him by that limb and pulls him up to his feet with ease as he passes, Grimm follows walking around the dog, he still looks at the canine confused about its presence before exiting through the doorway, he stops and turns in the hall. “You’ve got this.” Grimm says with a one finger salute, Sarah nods.
‘I’ve got this…’ Sarah repeats it in her head. ‘I’ve got this.’ And Grimm closes the door.
“Knock. Knock.” A two knuckle rap.
“Come lock this.” Grimm calls from the other side of the opaque glass before his distorted silhouette disappears from view and he rushes off down the corridor toward the Infirmary behind Turock and the YY chromo.