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The area surrounding Belden is mostly ruins. Once a mix of tall, mighty buildings and palatial mansions, months of hard combat have reduced the city outskirts to a jagged mass of ruins with the occasional skyscraper in questionable condition. No one, or almost no one lives in this area, officially evacuated and little enough to draw looters given the degree of destruction.
Here and there among the ruins, often hard to see until very close, are small clusters of military vehicles parked around an intact first story, or else patrolling the broad avenues. The armored vehicles of the Durasteel Tigers are painted to blend in with the debris, making them hard to pick out at first glance, even when moving.
[Exits : [In] To Belden, and [CA] Contested Area ]
[Players : Tara_DeGurichev, and Micheal_Harris ]
Tara DeGurichev looks like a child of eleven: a little over four and a half feet tall, and slender besides. She's got golden blonde hair and intense blue eyes, though many would call them manic. Though her build is tiny, she moves with an intense energy through any obstacle. And anything that gets in her way is an obstacle. She's currently wearing the uniform of the Durasteel Tigers - gunmetal gray with subdued rank and unit markings that can be seen close up, but are hard to pick out from any distance. They mark her as a 1st Lieutenant in an Armor unit. Normally, no award decorations are shown on the combat uniform, but a low-contrast Distinguished Service Cross, an eagle superimposed on a maltese cross, is a special enough medal that uniform regulations make an exception for the Tigers' second-highest possible award.
Carrying: Heuvelman IA2XSM(#744), and 1LT Tara DeGurichev's Tanker's Vest With Plates(#745)
Michael Harris has a light tone to his visage. None the less, one might call his look swarthy. His hair is short and brown, typical for service, but with a slight squarish outline. He's quite obviously scarred from either training or battle and his framing MIGHT belie some combat readiness but...he's a bit on the chunkier side with what looks to be a very average build. His movement is surprisingly dexterous however...especially for such a wide, stocky looking frame. It sure isn't all muscle though. His left eye is probably missing, as an eye patch on that side is a permanent feature. His unremarkable grey uniform has even less remarkable patches on it, barely visible in a slightly darker grey, showing that he's only at an E-2 grade.
Carrying: Heuvelman IA17(#736), Heuvelman IA2XSM(#689), and Pvt Micheal Harris's Tanker's Vest With Plates(#688)
So the briefing went like this: The whole company formed up, split into three sections. Section one, a single platoon, to go and skirmish an enemy camp, then break off and retreat to grid U7. Section two, nearly the rest of the company, lay in wait in U7, which is lightly forested, and ambush the Oscars when they chase after the bait platoon in force. Lt DeGurichev will take one tank and neutralize the enemy base camp.
So now the M2A1F tank commanded by Degurichev is making it's way, by a circuitous route so as not to contact enemy forces, towards that enemy camp.
"Suspected enemy forces," says DeGurichev, "Are some infantry and carriers," which pose almost zero threat, "And at most 3 or 4 deadlined tanks. Ones too broken to chase after our bait. Of those, we suspect one or two might be operational enough to get manned up if we assault their base. We can call in arty on them once we get eyeballs on them, and once they take their tribarrels out of air defence mode."
The enemy camp is just around the next bend between two hills. "You ready, Harris? Let's do this."
Pvt Micheal Harris feels almost like spewing some German as we seem to intend a semi-classical blitzkrieg! It's an old tactic, it works. Less complexity is less chance of random screwy-ness after all. He instead just nods to the order and gets the tank moving. "Yes ma'am."
It'd be a little more classic blitzkreig if there were a company of infantry on skimmers at their back, but the infantry and armored cars are pinning down the Oscars' reserves to keep them from supporting their armor. The lone tank floats on high-pressure air cushion between the gap and toward the suspected enemy encampment maybe two minutes at current speed. Which bursts into a flurry of motion like a kicked anthill as soon as the tank appears from between the hills. Lt DeGurichev tickles off a long range shot at one of the deadlined tanks, and it explodes into a fireball, scattering defenders.
Pvt Micheal Harris tries to keep a good speed as he looks for any kind of better firing angle on any remaining unmanned tanks. Best destroy any armor possible before it's actually staffed, amirite? He's not too worried about covering them up YET, as they have surprise and unmanned vehicles to deal with. As enemy defenses start mobilizing, he'll look more for a covered area to advance through.
1LT Tara DeGurichev checks INT(2) + SENSORS(0): 2d6 + 2 + 0 = 5 Pvt Micheal Harris checks INT(1) + RECON(2): 2d6 + 1 + 2 = 6
The LT is scanning for targets as well, and running the tribarrel over the scattering enemy while the main gun cools down. "Should be a couple more tanks," she says. "They're the priority," she confirms. But there's too many troopers and too much scattering, and too many shapes half-covered by tarps to pick out the right one before the one concealing the enemy tank is pulled back, revealing a hulk with most of the forward chassis disassembled. Unfortunately, the turret looks decidedly intact. Also unfortunately, they'd got it manned up before pulling the tarp back, so that it fires even as the LT is swinging the turret towards it. ... But luck only goes so far: their shot misses DeGurichev and Harris by a small amount, passing behind them as Harris guns the fans.
Pvt Micheal Harris releases a garbled obscenity that sounds roughly akin to every cuss word he's aware of...and possibly a few he just made up, as he floors it in the direction of cover with much more fevor than before. He yells back to Tara, "You'll forgive me ma'am, but I have to adopt the 'holy shit we're going to die' contingency for just a moment." He's just trying to hold the poop in, probably.
1LT Tara DeGurichev checks DEX(2) + GUNNER-TURRETS(1): 2d6 + 2 + 1 = 10 1LT Tara DeGurichev rolled 6 extra dice for autofire. 2 3 2 6 3 6 (2+6, 2+6, 3+3, +1 = 9, 9, 7: 2 hits)
1LT Tara DeGurichev snorts derisively at Harris and says, "Don't be a chickenshit, Harris," as she slews the turret around and stomps on the firing pedal. Their powergun fires with a roar, right into the open frame of the enemy tank, and it goes up in a spectacular fireball. "One shot's not going to kill us," she goes on as she indeed looks for more enemies. "Not that getting hit is good, but don't let fear force you into bad tactics." Her tone is lecturing now, though it may seem odd to be lectured by what seems to be an elementary school girl. She pans the tribarrel across what seems to be a motor pool, and a row of enemy jeeps explodes one by one.
1LT Tara DeGurichev checks INT(2) + SENSORS(0): 2d6 + 2 + 0 = 12 Pvt Micheal Harris checks INT(1) + RECON(2): 2d6 + 1 + 2 = 9
Pvt Micheal Harris is just going to have to adjust his path, then. Probably better to try to circle around futher, as to not get pincered, so long as he can keep the 'new threat' and it's conceivable field of fire in check. He grits his teeth, "Understood, ma'am. I think it's the 'more than one shot' situation I'm trying to avoid. Possible Oscar around that corner, ma'am." Might as well help with targeting in SOME meager way.
Pvt Micheal Harris checks DEX(1) + DRIVE-HOVERTANK(1): 2d6 + 1 + 1 = 9 1LT Tara DeGurichev checks DEX(2) + GUNNER-TURRETS(1): 2d6 + 2 + 1 = 8
1LT Tara DeGurichev says, "Confirm the tank around the corner, take us around." As the tank slews quickly around the building, the tank comes into view, still getting the tarp clear and manning up. The LT stomps on the firing pedal again, and the shot takes the tank right in the hull, which bursts into flame. A moment later, an explosion rips the turret from the tank's chassis and sends it skyward. As all this is happening, infantry are shooting at the tank without effect. Though about a hundred meters away, it looks like one pair are setting up some kind of launching device.
Pvt Micheal Harris takes a sideways beeline at the group who looks like they're setting up some anti-armor weaponry. He also goes for an audible: "Possible anti-tank foot mobiles at roughly 100m. Moving for better firing position."
1LT Tara DeGurichev checks DEX(2) + HEAVY WEAPONS-TRIBARREL(1): 2d6 + 2 + 1 = 12
1LT Tara DeGurichev grunts acknowledgement of the warning, and fires a short burst with the tribarrel, taking out one of the pair and sending the other diving for cover. "Good eye," she says. "Now, find me their remaining tanks, then we can blow this taco stand." The enemy fighters have mostly taken cover from now, as the LT is quite a good shot with the tribarrel. "Once we're clear, we'll call in the arty and let them slag what's left."
Pvt Micheal Harris checks INT(1) + RECON(2): 2d6 + 1 + 2 = 11
Pvt Micheal Harris just makes sure to go over the data points, just in case the CO has missed them. "Ma'am, there's another heavy but it looks to be inactive and the main barrel doesn't seem to be functional. That being said, 'hide in plain sight' - Also, command tent indentified here. *gestures appropriately* - Orders, ma'am?"
1LT Tara DeGurichev hrms at the mention of a command tent. "All right. The Oscars are keeping their heads down for the moment," she says. "I'll cover you. Get out and see if you can snag anything in there with any intel value. -Then- we get the hell out of Dodge."
1LT Tara DeGurichev adds flatly, "I'd go myself, but I don't think you know one end of a tribarrel from the other."
Pvt Micheal Harris peers back for just a second... nods once, almost glumy. "Yes ma'am. You're correct." He readies himself, checks his gear and assuming they're stopped, opens the hatch to start carefully climbing out. He doesn't mind doing some work on foot anyway. He's evidently gotten fairly decent at it.
Pvt Micheal Harris will roll the tank to a slow halt close-ish to the 'command tent', then. He'll concern himself with soft cover from LOS, sure, but in this case it might make more sense to worry about the Lt's field of fire. Either way, he wants to try to get reasonably close so he isn't exposed out of the tank for TOO long.
Harris is able to pull right in front of the tent. A jeep is crushed in the process, costing the tank a bit of paint. DeGurichev checks that everything is clear on the sensors, then pops out of her hatch to get a better view. "All clear," she calls to him, her thumb on the firing stud in case she needs to use the tribarrel. The command tent, already looking kinda wrecked as it's been riddled by fire from the tribarrel, is also home to two dead soldiers, one face down one with the arm burned off, the other face down in a large pool of blood. From the outside, a desk and some filing cabinets can be seen through the door.
Pvt Micheal Harris glances around a few times. It LOOKS quiet...and we all know that must mean EVERYTHING is just peach-no. Of course not. He carefully steps through and makes his way to the desk/cabinets. If he can determine anything off about either, he'll check now. Otherwise, he's going to gingerly start open drawers...
Pvt Micheal Harris checks INT(1) + RECON(2): 2d6 + 1 + 2 = 12
Most of what Harris finds is just junk. Personnel records - who cares if Lt. Snotface scored well on the test - but more digging produces supply stuff that might be a bit juicier. No maintenance records, unless that's in the filing cabinet. There is no organization - the place looks like it was just attacked. Ohright. Time ticks, though.
Pvt Micheal Harris communicates back as he's rifling through stuff. "There's a LOT of shit to get through here, ma'am. How are we looking out there?..."
1LT Tara DeGurichev radios back curtly, "You have twenty seconds, then I'm leaving without you. Grab what looks useful and get moving!" That's got to be figurative, it'd take her longer than that just to climb into the driver's compartment. ... Then again, as small as she is, sme might be able to squeeze through easily. There is technically a hatch from the commander's compartment in the turret to the driver's compartment, but it's a hell of a twisty trip for a grown man, and most people just climb out the commander's hatch and go in through the driver's hatch. But the Lt ... might be small enough and might be^h^h^h^h^h is definitely crazy enough to do it.
Pvt Micheal Harris is fairly sure that this is just a short-hand way of pointing out that they evidently DON'T have any time really. He's not actually worried about being left behind...but, then, she might force him to ride on the outside of the tank or something. He'll hang on to any important looking docs from the desk...but he HAS to check those cabinets really quickly. What he's found just isn't good ENOUGH...
Grabbing the papers, Harris turns and opens the cabinets. And inside are fairly organized-looking computer records. No way to even know what it is without a comp. There was one here, it's been slagged. He'd need a truck to carry them all anyhow.
Pvt Micheal Harris just takes what he has and bails outside. A.)Artillery at SOME point in the future, so....yeah. B.)Can't move those fucking storage devices anyway so....meh. Time to just get the flying fuck out of here.
1LT Tara DeGurichev is waiting with one hand on the tribarrel control, with just her head barely sticking half out of the hatch. That's probably all the way up, though, a normal person would be visible to his elbows. She sees you have an armfull of papers, and nods, "Good job," on the assumption that you probably got -something- useful. Back in the tank, it's a matter of just going back the way you came, though the Lt pauses long enough for Harris to remotely plot out an artillery strike.
Pvt Micheal Harris checks INT(1) + REMOTE OPERATIONS(1): 2d6 + 1 + 1 = 6
The arty strike is called in, and it's time to bail. Mission accomplished, time to get the hell out before the remnants of the forces the Tigers ambushed limp back. If they find more Tigers here, they will not be happy.
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