Battle Earth IV

Battle Earth IV by Nick S. Thomas Read Free Book Online

Book: Battle Earth IV by Nick S. Thomas Read Free Book Online
Authors: Nick S. Thomas
Tags: Science-Fiction
body went taut at the thought they were not alone. He panned around to find the source of the light, and then finally down to the street ahead could see Yorath and his unit coming out from a side alley up ahead. He let go of the binoculars and let them rest on his chest as he peered around at all the derelict structures around them. He hoped friendly forces were the source of the glimmer, but he doubted they were so lucky.
    Just as he felt his shoulders relax, an explosion ripped through the street in the distance, and the ground shook beneath them. Jones instinctively leapt for cover and tumbled across the road. He ran over broken glass before landing back on one knee beside an upturned police cruiser. His heart sunk, as he already knew that yet another comrade and friend would be dead. He prayed for it not to be the case, but it was unavoidable.
    Jones took a deep breath and raised himself up high enough to peer over the vehicle down towards Yorath’s unit. There were no screams or sounds of gunfire. The apocalyptical street was once more silent as all of the soldiers in it froze beside their cover. They awaited the onslaught of an enemy barrage or ambush, but it never came.
    “Come in Yorath, report,” he whispered.
    Static came over his mic and the sound of breathing as the Lieutenant tried to find the words to tell him.
    “We’ve, we’ve got two down.”
    “What is their status?”
    “One wounded, and he’ll make it. The other is gone.”
    Jones shook his head in anger.
    “We made it through. This is bullshit,” whispered Jones to himself.
    He looked up and all around for some signs of the enemy, but he already speculated that it was a planted explosive of some sort.
    “Any indication of enemies in the vicinity?” he asked.
    “None.”
    Jones stood up from behind the car and walked casually towards Yorath’s platoon. Jones’ unit followed after him, though more cautiously. They reached the scene of the explosion and could see Private Nichols had been torn apart by the blast and killed instantly.
    At least there’s enough left for a funeral. It’s more than most have got these last months, thought Jones.
    A few metres away, the medic was attending to the other casualty. Jones could see the wounds were only superficial from shrapnel. The man’s body armour showed deep scrapes and scars where the cuirass had saved his life. He was more stunned that hurt.
    “Shit, this isn’t how it’s supposed to have gone,” whispered Jones.
    He spoke under his breath so that others wouldn’t hear, but he did not have such luck. Yorath got to his feet and stepped up beside the Captain.
    “What are we even still doing here? Haven’t we given enough for this country? We should go home, and let their own people sort this mess out. I didn’t see civilians rushing forward to help fight this war, so why should we do all the work?” he asked.
    Jones winced at the fact the Lieutenant had made his despondent words loud enough for many around them to hear. Charlie leaned in close and whispered to Yorath.
    “I’ll remind you that you are an officer in the British Army, not some loud mouthed thug. Look at them, all of them. Their morale is low enough as it is. Last thing they need is an officer inciting insubordination in their ranks. We’ll leave when we’re ordered to.”
    “And when will that be?” snapped Yorath. “When there aren’t enough of us left to be what is deemed effective?”
    “Don’t give me this shit. You think doing a little hard labour is tough? Try being a prisoner of those bastards!”
    Yorath went quiet. He was shamed into silence by the Captain, who he knew in his heart he should support and respect.
    Jones turned and walked over to the wounded man and knelt down beside him.
    “You’ll be just fine.”
    The man nodded in gratitude, staring at the body of his friend who had not been so lucky.
    “We won’t be able to get vehicles out here for a while, and it seems any assistance in the air

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