southernisms: (Slaine)
[personal profile] southernisms
His saviour didn't so much as wait around for Slaine before moving on at a brisk pace, apparently trusting that he would follow. He did so without needless questions, easily catching up to her with longer strides...which was why he nearly collided with her back when she abruptly halted. Considering how petite she was, he almost feared knocking her over, and in the back of his mind he was grateful he was able to stop without losing his balance and devolving into a flailing mess.

On the other hand, it wasn't too long ago that he witnessed her casually stepping off a two-hundred-foot communications tower as if merely bypassing the final step on a rung ladder. Her diminutive build aside, she moved with the air of an experienced warrior, as if her current escort was a mundane duty for her. Slaine was reasonably certain that under different circumstances, the Hunter was more than capable of snapping his neck.

Fortunately, the Warlock managed to sidestep a collision as the veteran Guardian hefted her handgun. A massive thing painted with white markings and what looked to be a playing card spade, it seemed much too large to be a simple pistol. Slaine had a vague, fleeting recollection of hefting a small firearm – aiming it at someone whose face he couldn't quite discern – and the weapon of his memory seemed almost like a child's toy compared to the monstrous firearm in the Hunter's right hand. Yet, in spite of its size, she seemed to wield it least, if the comfortable flourish was anything to go by.

The Hunter gestured with her free hand, raising her arm with her hand in a fist to silently signal for him to halt. But while his LIDAR only indicated a single stretch of red, indicating hostile presence somewhere ahead of them, the senses of his companion were apparently so fine-tuned that she could discern more precise locations. He found himself wondering in the back of his mind just how long she had possibly been at this for her actions to seem so effortless, from the way she handled her weaponry to her almost nonchalant movements to being able to sense enemy positions even without the aid of her LIDAR. Potentially, it could have been years. Already there were countless questions haranguing the neophyte Guardian, none of which he currently had the time to ask.

His companion silently slipped behind a stack of corrugated metal crates, apparently trusting her charge to follow suit. He did so, albeit taking his own refuge behind an adjacent crate, his back flush with the connecting wall, as blocking her own line of sight and fire would probably not end well for either of them. He thought he could make out a fractional turn of her head, possibly out of surprise that he'd had enough tactical sense to recognise it. Not that he could really blame her; if she was even half the veteran he assumed, she had likely seen her fair share of neophytes committing serious tactical blunders that even he'd managed to avoid.

In spite of that momentary lapse, the moment seemed to pass quickly as the Hunter focused once more on the immediate problem in front of them. Even if he unsettled her somehow, her finely-honed instincts returned to the potential battlefield, eyes hidden behind the thick plate of her helmet scanning the scene before them.

The Fallen similarly hidden behind their respective covers were, in all likelihood, positioning themselves into position to deal with the threat they similarly detected through their equivalent technology. He knew better than to ask his rescuer, given that any attempt at talking would have instantly given away their precise location. The fact that their movement hadn't been answered with a cacophony of alien shrieks and a barrage of fire meant they had eluded detection for the moment, and the Warlock was not about to press his luck further. His mind worked furiously for a potential resolution, as futile as it probably was. In all likelihood, the lethally-precise Hunter was already working through a plan even as he was.

A barely audible sigh and a low mutter of an odd indecipherable word cut through the Warlock's musings.

"Too many of these bastards," she whispered. "No way to finesse this one...we'll have to brute-force it. Just stay behind me and hang onto your ass."

Before Slaine could so much as utter a word, the Hunter blurred into motion. Even before the first panicked shriek of a Dreg pierced the silence, she had already shot three cleanly through their heads with lethal accuracy as she ran. The one sounding the alarm dropped to the ground with a throwing knife planted between the single row of four eyes glittering green in the low light as the one on the opposite side was shot and killed centre-mass. Three shots from a Vandal's rifle seemed to track her movements, but she cleanly evaded them, whirling out of their path before shooting the alien dead.

Yet, even with five hostiles swiftly down, even more were doubtlessly milling beyond the bay door. "Oh, fuck this," the Hunter muttered in exasperation, holstering her gun. "This is taking too goddamn long."

Slaine was almost afraid to ask what she had in mind, but he wasn't waiting on the answer for long. In a move that defied their earlier caution, she leapt up a stack of corrugated metal crates before the slight form seemed to disappear in a flash of blue-hued light before his very eyes. Seconds later, she reappeared directly over the group of seven Fallen – including a Captain standing over a massive pile of rubble – catching them all by complete surprise to judge by the alarmed screams. "All right, assholes," she roared. "Drop dead!"

As she shouted her challenge, the Hunter drew the knife sheathed at her back – a small sword, if he was to be honest – before she disappeared again. All he was able to make out were brief flashes of crackling blue lightning, her movements too fast to be seen with the naked eye. But something was certainly happening when the entire squad of Fallen could only utter strangled cries as they fell to the ground, quite literally obeying her command. All that was left once she reappeared and lithely dropped to the ground once more were scattered Fallen corpses.

No sooner had her boots hit the ground that she drew her gun once more with a flourish, though there hardly seemed a need at that point. Still, there was no telling if more Fallen planned on showing up, so relaxing until they were safely away was a bad idea. Given he had no idea if reinforcements were on the way, he was of a mind to hurry to where the abandoned jumpship was.

Not surprisingly, the Hunter was of the same mind. Apparently paying no mind to whatever kind of reaction her – whatever she had done, he had no idea what to call it – actions might have invoked, she resumed her brisk pace toward the hangar. Slaine saw no point in wasting time, silently following suit.

Note: So RL has pwned me pretty hard, but I've been chipping away at this all this time. It's just been...really slow. As it is, this part of the chapter is only partially-done. But I figured that I should put something up for the time being.

February 2017

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