Home > Writing > EARTHFALL 2: A Bit of a Tiff

EARTHFALL 2: A Bit of a Tiff

“Not part of the deal, General,” Mulligan said. “This is as far as you go.”

Benchley looked up at the towering sergeant major. An icy smile slowly spread its way across his face, and Andrews caught a glimpse of what Benchley must’ve been like as a younger man: tough as nails, and ready to prove it.

“That’s funny, an enlisted man telling me what I can do,” Benchley said, though there was no humor in his voice. “I mean, here I am, an honest to God general officer. And you think you can tell me what to do, Mulligan? If I remember my military hierarchy, you’re what? Eleven stations down the food chain from me?”

“Sir, this isn’t your job to do,” Mulligan said.

“The fuck it isn’t!” Benchley roared, the fury in his voice mirrored by the expression on his face. Andrews had never seen the Old Man so energized before, and it was both an awesome and fearsome sight. “You back up right now, Sergeant Major, and you do it God damned fast!”

“Marty,” Mulligan said, “this is for me to do.”

“Make a hole,” Benchley growled. “Make it wide.”

“General—” Andrews looked from Benchley to Mulligan. “Sarmajor… listen, you can’t do this by yourself. I’ll go. I can do whatever you need me to do, and hey, I’m replaceable.”

Benchley turned his withering glare toward him. “Andrews—”

“Captain, I appreciate the sentiment, but this is something I have to do,” Mulligan said. “You have a rig to command. You need to stay here.”

“Lieutenant Eklund is quite capable of operating the SCEV, Sarmajor,” Andrews said.

“This is getting stupid fast. I’m doing this.” Mulligan peered down at Benchley. “Alone.”

“This is Old Guard business, and you are not alone in this,” Benchley said. “I realize I’m only a lowly infantryman, Green Beret, but my withered old ass is following you out that airlock. Suck it up, soldier. It doesn’t happen any other way.”

The two men stared each other down for a long moment. Then Mulligan finally gave a curt nod. “Hooah.” He backed out of the doorway, and Benchley hauled himself out of the co-pilot seat.

“Sir,” Andrews started.

“Son, you’re ruining a perfect opportunity to shut up,” Benchley snapped. “Just do your job, and keep your mouth shut. Understood?”

“Sir, you shouldn’t be going out there.”

Benchley leaned toward Andrews with such speed and ferocity that Andrews snapped his head back. He truly thought the Old Man was going to head-butt him, but instead he stopped when his face was only an inch away.

“Boy? When I tell you to shut up, it’s not a suggestion. This engagement is over, and you lost. Questions?”

Andrews felt his face grow hot from the anger he felt, but he knew how things were going to end up if he persisted. Having both a major general and a command sergeant major rat-fucking you at the same time was never the best way to make a name for yourself.

“No, General. No questions,” Andrews said, his voice tight.

  1. Alex
    September 10, 2017 at 3:03 am

    So updates and upgrades over the first story besides algae food like NASA wanted for its space colonies and such plus a larger population and force. I do wonder what hidden space assets we have. I know the Star Wars Program even if work it only denys say a few dozen at most a hundred but given the mass launches and ABMs to augment any MAD we can’t stop all out only dim it down. In theory we could worse case protect our last hope or Arclight I dub we can save NORAD, Raven’s Rock, and Mount Weather but we all know are really decoys as any fall back will be off the books still more to draw fire.

    Another thing we only assume what nuclear winter is like and in others someone might just drop a Neutron Bomb. More quick and clean.

    I have a idea for the Earthfall or next one Operation Vigilance while on base was designed to survive another was design to fight think of drones and hunter killers design to seek and destroy in worse case a final line of defense of the US if Neutron strike say cripples us they would have less fall out but leave all the infrastructure intact. Plus added likely test bed for next gen to get pass so funding.

    I’ve two units. The AMP the Adaptive Mobile Platform and the AAP or AP the Adaptive Aerial Platform with a few AFVs or Adaptive Fighting Vehicles the fact is while for now its seen drones next gen past that I see Adaptive Units we instead of building dozens make all round rigs while AMPs are mobile ground platforms that can be outfitted with guns or cannons or wheels or threads or flying VTOL fighter like the F-35 was but drone for Air to Ground or pods to serve as a Dropship or Gunship if need be. The AFV based on the Striker can serve as Command Unit or Troop Tansport or Medical anything you need everything cut down to three mass produce units.

    Now the bad news no AI maybe a Combat Intelligence but someone got to be running it who hasn’t blown their brains out a Caretaker as the base fully automated and self sufficient any radios or communications or secure Q link to our sats the question is where to base Operation Vigilance and will it be good or bad. I’ve learned a few things in my life one when back into a corner your never alone. If NORAD intact then you need your 3D printers to restore the uplink to Operation Vigilance as NORAD might have survive but likely one nuke near miss and fried the com dish so that’s why you need to restablish communications with the remnants and take back North America.

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