The Hearts of Soldiers

Ci’an lay in the charcoal-black trench holding firmly on to his assault rifle, so alien to his grip. Pulse energy low, the blood of the Enemy that last held the rifle still dripping on the weapon, and he was hungry again. He craved some of those Enemy smokes, but the last dead one didn’t have any. Just another corruption they brought to his homeworld. He could probably knock off another Enemy soldier on patrol soon, and maybe even get some food and ammo. Enemy food…Ci’an flinched, …uuuggggh, so drab. Nothing like the gra’ceel beetles he fancied. They were one of the first species to be extinct when the Enemy came.

He felt alone, in the cold. The Enemy wiped out half his unit. A surprise attack from one of their hover-assault craft on stealth mode. The other half was spread out across a field several kilos wide, near an Enemy airfield. The Enemy chose to a small knoll, outside Ci’an hidden village to build a small supply airfield and orbital shuttle landing zone.

The Enemy never could find all the native villages. All they do is paint the area with huge clouds of flame from orbital bombardments, in hopes of eliminating any villages. They missed his. For years, Ci’an didn’t understand why the Enemy couldn’t sense their villages. He later realized they simply didn’t have the senses his kind had. Today, it would be their downfall.

But he was sure that the rapid-fire blasters from the enemy emplacements would drill him down, like a dragalad during hunting season. … Now dragalad, he thought, now there was a delicacy. At least there are a few of those left to hunt. Ci’an swore to his spirit-god, and shook himself awake from the thoughts of food. His infra-visor flared in his eyes as he opened them again. Short, quick messages were being sent over the Enemy comlink that he was using, on his unit’s frequency. He wasn’t sure, but he had the feeling that things were getting started.

CRRRACK… a small twig snapping broke the silence. Ci’an pressed the energy-release. Ci’an, hugging the assault rifle close to his face, was the only one that heard the low hum that signified the power build up. Nothing moved. If Ci’an was an Enemy soldier, he would have broken a sweat. But he was fortunate not to have to put up with that discomfort.

A figure appeared out of the shadows, leaping into the trench. The armored figure fell into the radioactive mud. The odd way the Enemy helmet sat on the figure’s head told Ci’an it was another one of his comrades. It also didn’t show up on infrared as dark as Enemies do.

The figure gave Ci’an the ready-signal. Then held up all four digits of his upper right hand, signifying that it was only 4 minutes away. They were forced to use the Enemy time units, because the helmet chronometer was set to their system.

He was glad he didn’t charge his rifle up for nothing. The red blood of the enemy would be spilled tonight.

The Attack-tone went across the comlink, and Ci’an was up and over the trench. A target appeared not fart from him, obviously on patrol. He fired. The silvery -white blasts fried the soldier’s intestines. Ci’an leaped from his stance and ran towards the main gate past his dying target. It looked up with it’s two pale eyes, and that obviously simian-descended face, sprawled out on the charred ground. Humans, he thought, they are so plain looking. The ever-present UNASA symbol stenciled on the green-camouflaged armor was the symbol of his enemy… United Nations Air and Space Administration.. whatever that meant. The only good Enemy was a dead Enemy.

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