Updated: Apr 21
Gabriella Valencia looked down the scope of her rifle as she edged forward. The street was quiet, the only noise coming from the soft wind as it kicked up dust and whipped it around the sunbaked houses. Brie did not flinch. Her eyes were trained at the corner. Suddenly, she whipped around, pointing the barrel of the rifle down a hidden alley and fired a single blast. The man flew back.
"Tango One, down," Brie said in into her communicator.
"Roger that Hammer. Got an ID?"
Brie inched closer to the floored man, eyes open just in case it was a trap. Glancing down briefly, she saw who it was. "Target ID'd as Boomer,"
"Rog-" the feed cut off.
"Say again Patch?" Brie asked. There was no reply. She wasted no time in pressing at her wristpad and activating the ID locator. The device pinged in her ear, telling her which way to go. She didn't move. Tapping at her pad once again, she reached down and slid the wristpad off the fallen man. With her gun trained down the alley, she flipped the pad over and slide the housing off. Pulling a slim device from her own pad, she touched the exposed circuitry at the back before pulling a wire out and sliding it into a different position. With another with the slim device, the pad crackled and buzzed, energy flying from it. Brie quickly slid the device back into her pad before slipping the cover back on the pad. It buzzed and fizzed before it began to hum gently. Carefully tying it to her belt, she moved on, eyes trained down the streets, towards her fallen comrade.
It wasn't long before he found his body, spreadeagled, face down on the ground. He had fallen into a market square and was very exposed. Good, Brie thought. Unclipping her own pad, she lined it up with her fallen teammate. With a deft fling, she sent it flying towards him, silently cheering when it clipped onto the man's arm. Now, she reached into her belt and unclipped a small spherical object. Tapping the top, she threw it into the market square. Almost at once, the entire place was covered in thick grey smoke. Brie heard the shot. She ran. Darting through the smoke, she ran towards the direction of the noise, jumping up a stack of crates to reach the roof. The smoke disappeared just as she reached the lip and she saw the startled look of the sniper as she lept onto where he was standing. A shot rang out whilst Brie was in mid-jump. The sniper's face turned from shock to one of triumph as the shot whizzed towards her. The triumph quickly disappeared as the shot evaporated before it hit her, the pad on her belt fizzing loudly as a blue shield erupted around her. Landing with a roll, her hand reached down her leg and pulled out a pistol. She didn't hesitate to fire when she emerged from her roll. The sniper flew backwards off the building. Standing with a grin, she tapped her combadge. "Cross is down. I repeat Cross is down. Hammer strikes again!"
The holodeck shimmered off and the three downed men stood up, gingerly.
"Bloody hell Brie, you've knackered my damn pad again!" James "Boomer" Farmer moaned as Brie threw the fizzed out remains of the pad to him.
"Just replicate another one Booms," she winked as she stuck out an arm to the Trill called Cross. Cross took her hand gratefully as he stood.
"Really? Off the roof? You want me to break my back again?"
"What can I say, I like a man on his back," she winked. Cross shook his head.
"Can it Valencia!"
"Definitely don't can it Valencia!" came another voice. Patch jumped onto Brie, pulling her into a hug. "Score one, Patch and Hammers!"
Brie grinned as she pushed Patch off her. "You mean, score one Hammers. Didn't know you could win by lying on the ground,"
Patch turned red. "It's a team exercise..."
"How'd he go down Cross?" she cut in.
Cross grinned. "Had his ass right in the air. Like one of those ostriches. Nice and sweet!"
Boomer crumpled to the floor in hysterics, whilst Brie must have shed a tear. "Damn Patch that is one way to go!"
Patch had now turned a very cherry crimson. He was saved from further humiliation as C'Turan gave a polite cough. The four MACO officers stood to attention right away. "Scarface" C'Turan carried a sort of gravitas that could only be gained through years of hardened battle experience. C'Turan had that, and more.
"Lieutenant Valencia. Congratulations. You won it for your team. Very good use of your surroundings to give you the tactical advantage, even though you were handicapped by a lack of firepower. It's good to see that 16 didn't let up on your training,"
"We going to face the 16 in combat anytime soon? If so, I can give you all the details Sir. Including ones that you may not want to know," Brie replied, deadly serious.
Patch sniggered and C'Turan's lips curled, very slightly. "When we do Lieutenant, I'll be sure to use your tactical and intimate knowledge to win us the victory," she replied before snapping to Patch. "As for you Private...the hell do they teach at the academy now? You may have been on the winning team, but your performance was less than sub par. For that reason, you'll be joining the losing team in kit polishing and then be reporting to Captain Bishop to take on whatever menial job he has for you. Understood?"
"Yes sir!" Patch responded.
"Very well, dismissed all. Valencia, stay, I need a word,"
Brie watched as her team slumped off. Soon it was just her and C'Turan in the holodeck. "Yes sir?"
"Thank you sir,"
"I see you have lost none of your edge,"
"I didn't want to let 32 down sir,"
"Neither do I. I want you to take Patch under your wing. He has some gall, but he's no Ridge,"
"Of course sir... I'm...sorry I wasn't there when Ridge..."
"She died an honorable death. She would have liked nothing else. She's in Sto'vo'kor now,"
"She certainly is," Brie nodded. "Is that all sir?"
"No, one more thing. I want you to work closely with Captain Bishop. Since you're the bridge officer, you're the link between what's happening on top, to us down here,"
"Which means reading up on his history; I'll be testing you next week. Get reading,"
"Next week's ages away,"
"Have you seen the man's history?"
C'Turan raised her eyebrow. "Dismissed Valencia,"
Brie saluted before heading off to shower.