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A little something I wrote the other day. Nothing too great, just some practice to get me ready to start working on my Space Marine Chapter tales. : P Hope you all enjoy.Rampart and tangent forced into the fray, lying in the grime and death, waiting for the enemy. The ground it trembles, the earth it quakes, our breathing keeps even as rumbling, smog-spewing tanks pour forth into the begotten city walls. The platoon was stationed in the northern sector of the metropolis, the downtown area near to an old theatre. The squad consisted of Seda Pain (the Corporal in charge), Mikhail (our sniper), Grodric (our rocketeer and demolitions expert), as well as our four marines Alexander, Atticus, Octavian, and Ead. The party hung loosely from the third street of two adjacent buildings, back from the decimated gates of the city from which the remnants of state guards hung, blown to scraps by tank shrapnel. They had slung their group into two sections, the first of which was the marines, and the corporal, Seda, and the second headed the assault on the machines below while Seda and his men remained on the ground floor of their neighboring building. He and his cluster lay in wait, deep in the rot of blood, and mulch amongst the shattered tiles of the building in which they camped. The grumbling tanks edged ever closer to their position as they sank even deeper into the grungy pit. The guttural belching of hot engines and rattling tracks pushed further up the streets. Just a bit further, just a bit longer. The crunch of decaying bones, and splintered walls cracked beneath the massive beasts of war as they crept ever further up the busted pavement. Then it hit. The pulverizing discharge of an IX-47 rocket-launcher, that deafening blast of metal and metal tearing and screaming against one another, tore through the air like the wail of a banshee. It was then followed by a volley of more rockets and A1 military grenades, bursting and popping on instant impact of their monstrous targets. Mikhail sat up a bit further from Grodric as he picked off the tanks turret gunners from a safer position. One by one Seda viewed from a distance, the tanks remaining painted red, as the other great apparatuses fell in formational lumps of charcoaled metal and soot. When he and his men first leapt from their fissure, there were still six more tanks, their barrels aimed high at the mounted rooftops. Ear-impairing cracks in the air penetrated their orifices as the tanks opened fire. The structure was torn to shreds behind them, they couldn’t even look back to see their comrades fall. Seda and his troop hustled up the street, full sprint towards the stalled machines. They had caught them mid-reload. Seda tore a flash grenade (formally called an I-7) from his leg, and tossed it into the middle of the lane. It bounced past the first two before it went off in a huge gush of glaring white-hot light, ash, and noise. There was a grind of guns from behind its shield of radiance. He dashed out first and thumped his back against the side of the first tank; He ripped a second grenade from his pant leg (this time an A1 fragmentation) and tossed it deftly into the insides, engulfing its contents and drivers in flames. The rest of the men crossed the junction past him and surrounded the next individual while the others behind it were still dazed. Alexander wheeled around the bulkhead of the tanks armor and looked straight into the viewing glass, blasting its contents full of M31 rounds before setting another charge, like the ones the other marines had placed on the tracks, on the base of the turret. They charged up the boulevard onward towards the next enemy as Seda hopped into the one that he had just cleared. They were built to survive almost anything those tanks. With the limited resources after the last recession, the army had to make it so, so that replacements wouldn’t be needed often. He revved up the turret just as the detonations of the charges went off on the tank behind him. Two down, four to go. He swiveled around to find that the rest of his squadron had finished off a third tank and were headed towards the fourth. “Damn… too bad there’s no one around to promote them.” Seda muttered to himself, setting his sights on the tank furthest away. His barrel held one thirty-eight millimeter round in its station, and that was the only shot he’d have. He waited for his men to be behind the rubble of the third tank before he tore a hole into the last one. It was a terrific penetrating shot, which split right into the belly of the monster before detonating and obliterating the looming death machine. His job was done, so he climbed carefully out of the tank after placing his own pack of set C4’s in the central seating of his used tank. He walked towards his troop, setting off the charge behind him, but that’s when something happened that he didn’t expect. The tank on which his men were operating was then engulfed in the same explosion that was just then smothering the dead brute behind him. His eyes widened in terror, and his mouth fell open in dumb surprise, as his brothers wailed and tore at their peeling faces and bodies. They yelled and fell about, tearing about at their melting flesh. “WHY!?” one screamed, and that was the only discernable word that was noticed and the brave men fell in horrified positions, their faces frozen in petrified, burned eternity. The corporal fell to his knees and wept, unsure of what to do. The capricious winds blew and licked at the dust about his ankles, that mingled with ash, blood, and oil.