This is the 112th in a series of 365 Flash Fiction stories I’m writing. You can find out more about the challenge here.
Battle Moon, by Jonathan L. Lawrence, 23rd March 2013
Word count: 755
“Start!” screamed the voice over the radio, “God Dammit!”
“Unit three, get out of there,” the commander in the control room ordered into the radio.
“No can do,” Unit three responded, “Argh!” the scream was sudden and cut off quickly.
“What happened?” the commander said turning to one of the techs.
“No idea, transmission lost. We’ve got a bird over the sea, I can redirect.”
“Do it,” the commander instructed.
“What’s happening?” the General asked as he entered the control room, recognising the unease he saw in his men.
“The enemy is on the move,” the commander said, “It looks like they’ve just taken out one of our scouts at Ddedddsddddd.”
“Not good,” the General mused, “Move to high alert, if they’re moving there’s only one place I can think they’d move towards.”
“All hands, all hands move to full alert. Emergency teams three through five man your stations, emergency teams one and two on roving duties. Attack team three to occupy the canyon. Everyone else battle stations until further orders are given. Duty officers report to control for further instruction,” the Commander said over the intercom.
“Commander, add attack team two to the canyon force. They’re going to be our first line of defence,” the General said.
“Yes sir,” the Commander said.
“We can not lose the moon,” the General said allowed to everyone in the room, “We do this by the numbers, and we do it well.”
The General returned to his war room just off of control, the Commander followed.
“Yes?” the General asked.
“What if this is a ruse? What if they’re penning us up here, in defensive array so they can get a shipment of helium three away?”
“Good question, our forces are quite finely balanced. It doesn’t make sense, except that the war does not go well for them down on Earth,” the General said.
“Maybe we could preemptively strike their launcher, if they’re on the move it won’t be well defended,” the Commander said.
“True, but we’d be losing control of the skies right before a battle. It’s a three hour round trip, and we’d have to refuel the birds when they got back.”
“I’m glad it’s not my call,” the Commander said.
“Indeed. Okay put a plan of attack together, that will also give us visibility of the enemy too,” the General said. “If we can take out their launchers, and hold our own, the battle for the moon will be all but won.”
“Yes Sir,” the Commander saluted.
“Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to contact Alliance Command and update,” the General said reaching for the old fashioned telephone handset.
Four hours later a Sparrow, an Alliance reconnaissance plane launched from Ddedddsddddd and sped off pay enemy lines. Following a few miles back were the three Kites, Alliance fighter bombers. They flew high and fast, trying not to be noticed while trying to notice everything and feed it back to control.
The Sparrow reported back to the Kites information on defences, which were only lightly manned as expected.
One by one the Kites glided down, releasing destruction on the enemy’s Mass Drivers, (used for fast and efficient launch of payloads off of the moon).
One Kite wad lost to defensive fire, the others escaped. The Sparrow stayed behind a few moments to recover the crew of the fallen Kite.
“We did it!” The Commander said emphatically when he went to inform the General.
“Reign yourself in,” the General warned, “We did it because nearly all of their forces are currently parked two miles away from this very spot. They’ll commit everything, they need our Mass Drivers now.”
“Yes Sir, sorry Sir,” the admonished Commander said.
“The attack units at the ready, and their support, I want you to get them ready to move out,” the General said.
“We’ll be exposed, sir,” the Commander said confused.
“They have to take this base by force and hold it, long range attacks won’t cut it for them. So we’re going to fight this nearer to them,” he pointed at the map, “We’ll cross the mountains here and take them on the flank before they can finish mobilising.”
“And if they’re already going through the canyon?”
“Attack units one and two will slow them, and they’ll be hit from multiple directions.”
“Very good, sir,” the Commander saluted and left to issue the orders.
The General afforded himself a moment to take it all in, in one stroke, he would be the man that won the battle for the moon.