Xenonautical Adventures – Part 31: A Small Surprise
30th of December, 1979, 07:31
I am finding myself restless and I’m having a hard time concentrating. I stopped by the doctor, and he said it was probably stress. I got something to help me calm down, but I figured I shouldn’t take any while working. Though I’m not getting much work done anyway.
I can’t shake this feeling that the aliens are planning to do something for New Year’s, like bomb the planet from orbit, or finally do a full-scale invasion. The Chief said the idea was ludicrous, as there’s been no evidence the aliens care about, or even know about, our calendar. So they wouldn’t know it was new year’s for us, and even if they did, they don’t seem the types who would care.
I suppose I won’t feel certain until we get there and either something happens or it doesn’t.
30th of December, 1979, 18:42
I have received reports from both of the other bases. Everything seems to be in order. Good.
We were hoping to take it easy tomorrow, so I’ve been pushing everyone to get things ready and in order by the end of today, and it seems they’ve made it.
I am going to spend the rest of the night with Major Merrywhiskers and some music, if nothing comes up.
30th of December, 1979, 21:29
I think I jinxed it. I had fallen asleep, and woke up with another sock missing as the call came in. A UFO appeared in the far-western edge of Soviet territory. Commander Marabello has launched Condor-5 to intercept it.
30th of December, 1979, 21:32
A medium UFO with two escorts has showed up over Quebec in North America. Commander Dosjevsky has launched Condors 3 and 4 to intercept. At least they’re spreading out between several bases, but I wonder how many contacts they intend to send down in total this time?
30th of December, 1979, 21:42
Hello… a small contact popped up right outside of the North American base. It’s actually on the radars of Condors 3 and 4 as well as the base radar. How many months since we saw something that size? And no escorts. Foxtrot-2 has been launched to intercept.
30th of December, 1979, 21:45
“Contact, sir! Confirmed extraterrestrial contact! In the Himalayan mountains, north of Bangladesh, sir!”
And one for us, I see. It’s pretty far out, and heading west, so I don’t think a Condor could catch up to it.
“Understood. Launch Foxtrot-1, intercept course!”
30th of December, 1979, 21:50
Yeah, it was just a regular Scout. Foxtrot-2 have shot them down, basically at the doorstep of the base. Charlie-2 are heading out to quickly clean them up before we get to anything else. I wonder if there was any particular reason a Scout would show up again, but I suppose there doesn’t have to be.
It should take Charlie-2 less than an hour to get there. Maybe even half an hour with favourable winds.
30th of December, 1979, 22:00
A munitions depot near Quebec City was bombed, which I guess solves the mystery of what sort of UFO appeared up there. I expect the Condors will reach them within the hour.
30th of December, 1979, 22:22
Condor-5 have shot down a Corvette over Yugoslavia, and Charlie-3 are scrambling to deal with them. It’s close enough to the base that an interceptor should be able to reach anything that might show up.
Charlie-2 has reached the Scout wreck, and are setting down. Should be a fairly easy job by now, but… be careful.
Charlie-2 Response Team on the ground. Day-time mission. Weapons at the ready. Dropship doors opening.
Let’s do this quick and by the book. It’s been a while since we’ve handled a small UFO, so we read up on some notes during the flight.
As soon as we get close, we can feel a familiar pressure in our heads that suggests it’s the greys in jerseys.
Splitting up; we send Lt Sumanai to check out the small building west of us; Lt Grump goes to check on the farmer we spotted just beyond; Lts Angnor and Sibana head straight for the field to the north-west, as we spotted the UFO just beyond it, and they can get backup from Lts Grump and Sumanai when they are done; Cpt Havoc and Sgt Guard go to check out the sheds east of us; Lts DeHaan and Vecre go for the field just north of us.
Lt Vecre is the first to spot an alien, and moments later he’s the first to shoot one, too. It goes down immediately, so both Vecre and DeHaan hustle into the field and find cover.
Cpt Havoc spots a second one by the sheds, but it’s too far for her to hit, so she rushes up to the tractor for cover, with Sgt Guard following closely to watch her back.
Havoc takes a moment to catch her breath, and then steps out. The alien had been trying to get around them, but she was ready and a single shot is all it takes.
We see a dead farmer further up there, but we’ll have to deal with that later. For now Cpt Havoc makes her way around the back of the sheds, while Sgt Guard approaches the door on this side.
On the other side, Lt Sumanai quickly discovers the small building is clear, and Lt Grump talks to the farmer. He is absolutely furious, and demands to help us storm that UFO. We advise that he stay back, but he won’t listen, and we decide that using the stun sticks on civilians is bad form, so we have to just protect him. Lt Grump tells him to stay behind her, and he seems to accept that, at least for now.
As we approach up the field, Lt Angnor spots a blue-jersey just as it retreats behind some shrubbery. We try and fail to get a good line on it, so we radio the observation over to Lts DeHaan and Vecre, so we can try to trap it between us.
We approach, it tries to pull back and fire on us, we attempt to hit it, but it’s too quick. In the end the situation is resolved by Lt DeHaan lobbing a gas grenade at its feet.
With that cleared, Lts Grump, Sibana and Sumanai set up positions by the stone fence where they can guard the UFO’s door, while the farmer demands that we storm the thing immediately. We ignore him as the others continue sweeping the remaining fields.
Meanwhile, Sgt Guard enters the sheds, and spots a blue-jersey huddling in the farthest room. It quickly darts out of sight, so Guard does the responsible thing and rolls a gas grenade in there after signalling Cpt Havoc to watch the far door in case it tries to escape. With a familiar loud puff, nearly half the shed turns purple. Cpt Havoc sees the door open, and readies her pistol, but a moment later she can hear the thing just hit the ground.
While the rest of the outside area is being searched, the aliens inside the UFO decide they want to fight.
They seem a little disorganised and confused, running around more than they’re actually firing at us, and even when they do, they don’t seem able to hit us.
A red-jersey storms out and tries to shoot Lt Grump, but Lt Sibana puts a stop to that. As Lts Angnor, DeHaan and Vecre approach from the side, a blue-jersey decides it’s next, and comes rushing out, firing at the farmer, whom we hadn’t even noticed had been edging himself closer to the UFO. Thankfully the alien misses, and Lt Grump opens fire. The blue-jersey is knocked down, but it tries to get back up, only to be met by Lt Angnor’s carbine.
Next time the door opens, Lt Sumanai manages to hit a red-jersey that poked its head up, and Lt Grump guns down the purple-jersey as it tries to retreat into the back room. Immediately we feel the mental pressure from the thing lift, and we breathe a sigh of relief as Lt DeHaan reaches us and loads a gas rocket into his launcher.
We don’t see anything more moving in the main room, but we know we saw one retreat into the back room, and there could be more than one hiding in there. Lt Angnor opens the door, then steps back, and Lt DeHaan fires straight at the back door. We expect the gas could likely force its way through to the back, but what we don’t expect is for the rocket to punch through the door before it explodes beyond. We hear a choked yelp coming from inside, but we leave it for a few minutes before we go back to check.
We find a single unconscious blue-jersey back there, and with that the threat is neutralised. While we round up and execute the unconscious aliens, some of us help the farmer moved the dead body of his cousin. His fury seems to have gone out of him, and he just seems pained now.
The clean-up crew arrive quickly, even before we are able to take off. They’ve started bringing emergency counsellors with them by now, to check in with any survivors. Even if we get through this, the world will not be the same afterwards. Charlie-2 head home.
30th of December, 1979, 22:47
Charlie-2 are back in the air, with no reported injuries, and Condors 3 and 4 shot down the bomber and its escorts. This is progressing fairly well so far.
Less than 26 hours until the council calls.
30th of December, 1979, 23:28
Foxtrot-1 has shot down a Corvette near the Pakistan-Afghanistan border. It’s pretty far out, but I will send Charlie-1 regardless. They will barely make it back before New Year’s, but that’s just part of the job.
Let’s have a look at the report from Charlie-2’s mission. As I expected, nothing special. They carried out their task professionally. Commander Dosjevsky recommends that Lt Grump be promoted to Captain, and I’m okay with that. Additionally, Lts Angnor and Sumanai have both earned Orders of Gallantry based on their full records so far.