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Brutalist Stories #49

The Widowmakers

Building inspiration: 1976 Ferrari Rainbow Prototype

I’m stood by the gigantic door, looking over the crew as half of them quickly set the detonators and the other half desperately hack into the mainframe. “The clock is ticking gentlemen! Need I remind you that the Party is relying on those atomic secrets for the good of the Motherland!”

None of them turn, none of them even twitch, they’re a solid platoon and they’re hammering away at their tasks. A finely tuned machine, we’ve been at this sort of thing against the Titan’s for years now and we all know exactly what’s at risk and what we might gain by another successfully completed mission.

“Detonators set, comrade!” one of the crew shouts.

“Outstanding work, how are we looking at the hack?” I walk over and place my hand on one of the tech crew screwing his mind deep into the mainframe. His VR goggles vibrating violently on his face as his head shakes with the waves of data shooting into his mind.

He’s close, very close and I bring up his STIM readouts on my own headset, but there’s something off, his betawaves are out of sync and I’ve seen this shit before. Their AI’s got a handle on him, fuck. “Comrades, we are leaving!”

The demolition crew finalise their detonators and we’re bolting out of the three feet thick steel door as the tech crew lose their game with the enemies AI and their VR goggles heat to 3000 degrees Celsius to ensure there’s nothing left of their brains the AI can retrieve.

We’re through the door and bolting outside as we hear their heads pop and the demolition crew hit their red button and the whole powerplant starts to go up. If we can’t retrieve the data we need, then we sure as hell know that the Titan’s are going to feel our presence, this will put their efforts back a few months at least.

The volcanic tundra opens up to us as we clear the last of the steel and concrete from the plant, and we can hear the high-pitched buzz of the drones coming in fast. “Charge packs, comrades!”

Fifteen tense seconds and we’re ready to go as the drones come swooping in and a chain reaction in the powerplant really starts. The whole place is erupting, drones hammering our open position and we’re on the bounce, by the numbers, carried by our booster packs, the demolition crew letting loose some more of their toys that are efficiently dispatching with the attack drones.

“Landing zone in sight, comrades. Ready for drop and escape vehicle intersect.”

In unison I hear, “Affirmatory.”

Thirty seconds and we are back on land under an ever-thinning curtain of fire from the chasing drones that are proving trickier for the demolition crew than expected. We’re losing comrades but we’re at the evac way-point and the Rainbow carriers are waiting for us.

“Come on home, brothers!” I hear coming through my headset and I swoop one last look at the landscape, scattered with smoking bodies of my platoon, exploding shells of drones dispatched, and in the distance the power plant a raging fireball. Another solid mission, another blow to the enemy.

  • Building inspiration: 1976 Ferrari Rainbow Prototype

Musical Inspiration: Justice – "Phantom" & "Phantom Pt.2"

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