The Sorceress War Part I, Chapter XIX
AN: Okay, for anyone wondering
what the Valhalla looks like, here it is. It roughly looks like Setzer's
airship, the Blackjack. Except, the Valhalla is silver and has gun
turrets. And of course, is jet powered.
Celeste Trepe-- "Heartilly
will agree with me on this since we always play together: 'You aren't a
true video gamer unless you can keep playing after 48 straight hours and play on
despite those evil epileptic seizures that seem to come up after the first 24
Raine and the other
Wolves ran half-crouched along the cargo area of the Airship Docks.
To Raine's detest it had taken nearly an hour to get to the docks, since the
train departure had been delayed. It would take another hour just
to catch up with the Helian attack forces. To make matters even worse, it
would only take the attack force two hours to cross the small stretch of ocean
that separated Galbadia's Western shore from Helios' Eastern one.
That was cutting it far to close for Raine's tastes. Wolf Pack did have a
benefit however. Most of the soldiers stationed at the Airship
Docks had left with the attack force or were busy placing things back the way
they were before the airship fleet had taken off. Since a boat was
out of the question due to its speed, Raine decided the only way to get to
Galbadia in time to stop Virados was by airship.
The thought seemed to
not sit very well with the other Wolves, however. The only one with
any pilot training of any kind was Julia, since she was the vehicle expert, but
Galbadia had not taught her how to fly an airship. Helios had full access
to airship blueprints, and so Galbadian forces had no idea how they were even
controlled. Julia, to the shock of the others who had expected her to be
overly-excited, was actually nervous about getting into one of the large war
machines and flying it to Deling.
There were only two
airships left. One was a large and slow cargo transport that would
take far too long to trudge over the ocean. The second was probably
the only option. It was sleek and silver, with two extensions on
the hull that looked similar to wings for horizontal stability. A
large engine was attached to the bottom and latter half of the hull, and seemed
to be the largest region of the airship. Gun turrets littered the
sides of the hull and the area above the bridge, and the name Valhalla was
etched into the hull. Raine had been cautiously leading them
towards the ship, but now favored Julia's haphazard way of
destruction. This process was consuming too much valuable time, and
if she needed to go in guns ablaze, then she would do so.
"Ugh, I almost hate
myself for succumbing to this level of combat, but I guess I have
to." Raine said with an almost disappointed tone in her voice.
"We need to go through quick. Do we have enough ammo to break
through without problems?"
Julia laughed happily.
"I love you, Raine!"
"I know, I
know." Raine replied with a slight smirk.
"Seriously, are we good to go?"
After a few moments of
checking their weapons, Edea took the initiative to reply.
"Yes. I have two magazines left, Epsilon has three, Andraia
hasn't used up her bullets yet, Zion has one spare magazine, and Celeste
has three bullets left in her revolver... if she were awake to use it that
"Okay, we're pretty good
then. Zion, if you run out of ammo, just grab Celeste's gun."
Raine informed. After seeing Zion's nod, she continued on with what she
was saying. "All right, on my count we attack. One...
two... three.... charge!!"
On her command, the ten
soldiers burst out from behind the small metal structure they had been hiding
behind. The Wolves that didn't have any firearms fell into place
behind the ones that did, letting the others get perfectly clear shots against
the enemy. Naturally, the four guards who had been standing in
front of the Valhalla jumped into action as soon as the Wolves let out
their war cries. However, they didn't stand much of a chance against
Epsilon's sniper rifle. With a quick motion, he was able to shoot
four bullets out towards the guards. Each hit their marks either in the
chest or head.
On instant, after
Epsilon had let the now un-silenced gun ring out, the alarm system sounded
throughout the entire complex. Quickly checking behind them, Raine and
Edea noticed that a Mobile Type 4 had been released from somewhere and was now
using its hover-jet system to rocket towards them. The two women
instinctively began to run faster, and told the others to hurry as well.
The war machine wouldn't be able to catch them, however. With the robotic
attacker only a few hundred yards off, the Wolves sped up the boarding ramp and
into the Valhalla.
Lilliana, get up to the bridge and get this thing going!" Raine
ordered as she ran through one of the walkways. "Edea, Epsilon and
Zion, go see if you can't use one of the anti-artillery guns to get rid of the
Mobile Type 4! Everyone else strap yourselves in somewhere!"
Each soldier took off
in their appointed direction. Julia and Lilliana sped up towards the area
which would house the bridge, and Edea and Zion ran off towards the rooms above
the bridge which held the chain and laser cannons. The Mobile Type
4, on the other hand, was already spraying the outer hull of the airship with
Vulcan cannon fire. Since the hull metal was so thick, there wasn't much
of a threat that the bullets would break through, but the sheer sound of the
ricocheting bullets was enough to terrify even the bravest of the
Julia flinched as
another bullet hit the outer hull of the area in which she was currently
passing by. She and Lilliana were following the signs that were posted on
the sides of the wall to find their way towards the bridge. Seeing a
silver walkway lead up into a room that was one floor above them, she
quickly darted up it, assuming that it was her destination. She was relieved
when she saw the command consoles of the bridge, and eagerly leapt towards the
pilots chair. Lilliana flipped the switches that activated the gun
turrets, so that the Wolves who were heading towards them could operate them
"Okay, here goes
nothing!" Julia shouted as she flipped on the main power systems and
grabbed the main flight yolk. However, she quietly mumbled under her
breath so that Lilliana couldn't hear her, "Please don't blow up, please
don't blow up..."
She forcefully hit the
vertical hover system and immediately felt a rumble beneath her as the engines
increased their output. She smiled as the Valhalla began to rise
into the air, but found herself and Lilliana reeling back in shock as the
airship came to a sudden and abrupt stop. Julia didn't know what was
wrong, but could hear the control panel beeping wildly in warning and several
red lights light up on the panel in warning. Damn it, did I not say
'Don't blow up'?! She thought with distaste.
Lilliana tried to interpret
the signals the console was emitting. "Hey, Julia, I think that the
safety measures are still in place. You know, those steel cables that
keep an airship bonded to its platform? Find a way to detach them!"
"Oh, easier said
than done!" Julia shot back, then began to look franticly on the control
panel for some sort of device that would do just what Lily had
requested. "Like I really know which button does that!
Ugh, help me find it!"
Back inside the halls
of the Valhalla, Edea, Epsilon and Zion almost collapsed as the ship
came to a sudden stop. After regaining their balance after a
moment, they continued to run down the halls at top speed towards the gun
turrets. Finding two silver ladders shortly after they passed the bridge,
Edea assumed that the gun turrets were above. She ordered the two of the
males up to find out. Zion and Epsilon quickly scaled the ladders and
found themselves sitting in front of the gun turret itself within a revolving
platform. A plastic guard would have prevented them from forceful
winds, had they been moving. Edea, by that time, had noticed
another turret room on the side of the airship, that was used to shoot down
targets on the sides of the ship as they strafed it. Each powering up
their own gun, they tried to locate the Mobile Type 4.
Epsilon found that
there was a radio headset inside his turret, and he placed it on. He
tested it for a moment, "Hey, is anybody on this
At that instant he
received a heated reply. He identified the source as none other than
Julia, for it was the communication to the bridge and the other
turrets. "What do you want?!"
thing? I can't see it!" He shouted back, still turning his
head around quickly to see some sort of movement.
our ass! It's aft, aim that way! Now shut up, I need to find a
button!" Julia shouted back over the intercom in his turret,
then pushed a button that jammed the transmission to the bridge.
Epsilon spun his turret
around backwards and Zion, seeing him do so, did likewise. However, the
only thing they could make out was the occasional explosion and jet exhaust
from the mobile armor, but the machine itself was blocked by the massive engine
and engineering cabins at the aft decks of the airship. They would
have to wait for it to move, which it would be doing sooner than
expected. Suddenly and without warning, the Mobile Type 4 turned and
began to speed along the side of the Valhalla at break-neck
speeds. Unfortunately for Zion and Epsilon, it was still masked by the
Edea on the other hand,
had a clear shot since it was speeding down her side. She swiveled the
turret around until the targeting cross-hair was lined up with the mobile
armor. She would only have a few seconds due to the armor's amazing
speed, but she tried anyway. Pulling the trigger, she let out a blast of
Vulcan fire at the enemy. To her dismay, the bullets strafed along the
ground as the mobile armor dodged the attack and continued toward the
foredecks. She spun the turret around again, and continued to fire.
She smiled as one bullet connected with the top left side of the armor, but it
was far from enough to actually destroy it.
Julia and Lilliana were
still searching for the button which would release the safety cables, but were
having no luck. Julia had reverted back to her own nature, 'if you
don't know what you're looking for, just push everything.' And that was
what she was doing. This system wasn't doing much either, except for
lowering and raising the flaps and slats on the horizontal stabilizers and
turning the night-vision HUD on and off. She groaned in frustration and
slammed her fist onto a large red button. To her and Lilliana's shock,
two missiles launched from the sides of the foredecks. Julia
dropped her jaw as they slammed into the upper part of the Airship Docks and
caused the tower and surrounding buildings to collapse in a fiery explosion.
There was a large shudder as the platform threatened to collapse as well, now
that the tower had gone down.
Lilliana spun around
with a glare, "Okay, I don't like your plan of pushing every button
in sight! Especially the big red buttons! Now would you please read
the damn things before you push them?!"
fine!" Julia said with annoyance. "We'll do things your
way. But just because of the missile thing, I think my way is
This time, Julia
scanned the buttons carefully, reading each one before moving on.
Finally, she came to one that said 'Launch Safety Release' and smiled
triumphantly. Pushing it happily, she and Lilliana felt a shudder and
heard a loud clank as the steel cables detached themselves from the outer hull
and landed with a scraping sound against the metal of the launch
platform. Julia grabbed the flight yolk again and quickly started
the engines back up again. This time, the Valhalla rose gracefully
into the air.
Edea was slightly
shocked as she saw the ground get smaller beneath her seat in the gun turret,
but was glad to be getting out of the chaotic landing zone. The
Mobile Type 4 had been shredding the outer armor of the hull for a good five
minutes now, and was still moving to fast for any of the gunners to shoot down,
though all three of them had let off many rounds of cover fire. Now that
the airship was at a different angle as it rose, she had a better shot.
Lining the cross-hair up again with the main body of the mobile armor, she hastily
pulled the trigger. A stream of bullets scalded the ground and eventually
worked their way up onto the frame of the armor, causing it to burst into
several pieces. She smiled at the success, and even though she detested
war, she felt happy to be able to take the enemy out.
The Valhalla finally
completed the ascent needed to take off, and almost hesitantly Julia flipped
the throttle up and caused the airship to rocket away at top speed to the East
towards Deling City. Hopefully, if luck was on their side, they would be
able to arrive before the Helios and Esthar fleets could meet and attack their
"Come on man,
can't this thing go any faster?!"
please calm yourself." The captain of the Defiance said as he
looked back to the impatient blonde man that stood eagerly behind him inside
the bridge. "I told you before, I have the ship going as fast
as possible. But, in this rough water, it would be dangerous to go any
Jesse shook his head in
frustration as he let out a large sigh. At this rate, they would be lucky
enough to see Deling explode from a thousand yards off. Icelina had tried
to use the radio once before, and had failed to reach Timber or Winhill for any
sort of support due to the heavy storm that hung over the Imperial Ocean.
Jesse tapped the hilt of his gunblade again, as he did most often when he was
beginning to get agitated.
then. Look, how far away are we from the Timber coast? Can we
radio again, and will it work this time?"
The captain checked the
radar screen that held the Defiance's coordinates on a mapping
grid. After a brief calculation, he turned back and replied.
"Exactly half a kilometer. I suppose you should try again now, if
your communications officer is ready."
Jesse nodded and turned
back into the cabin area. Though he had expected most of his soldiers to
be asleep due to the amount of running they had to do, most were awake with
nervous looks plastered across their faces. He could understand, since
most of their hometowns were from Deling City, and they were worried about the
people who lived there, and what would happen if they weren't able to give out
the warning in time.
Walking over to
Icelina, who was sitting in one of the passenger's seats, tapping her fingers
against the arm rest in an anxious and impatient state. She looked up to
Jesse, her blonde hair falling into her eyes. "Can I try for
Timber again? We're within the range, right?"
"Yeah, he says
were only a half click away. You should probably be able to access their
McCord Air Force Base, because that's right on the coast. You tell them
to radio into Deling, since they have a more powerful transmitter."
that." Icelina replied, then activated the radio equipment once
again. "Attention any Timber military base. This is the Galbadian
cruiser, the Defiance. Please reply."
After a few repeats of her
message, she was shocked and relieved to get a reply. "This is
McCord Air Base. Go ahead, Defiance."
"Galbadia is under
attack! Esthar and Helios have launched a massive naval and air force
against Deling City, ETA to their touchdown is... " She flipped her wrist
up and looked at her watch. "....exactly half an hour. Our transmitter
is weak and we can't reach them from where we are and we'll be too late to warn
them ourselves. You need to contact Deling to have them set up
defenses, and call in Dollet to send over their nearest platoons or squadrons.
Send in any of your reserve troops as well. Do you understand?"
Defiance. I will forward the message immediately. I'm sure we can
spare some troops that are on patrol on the Galbadia-Timber border. Good
Icelina and the other
Excalibur soldiers breathed a sigh of relief as they heard that.
Hopefully, Deling would be able to get all of their defense measures
operational by that time, and that Dollet and Timber would send in their relief
platoons as fast and they could. Still, Helios and Esthar unfortunately
had the element of surprise more or less. It would take a quick mind to
get all of the Deling Forces massed together for a large scale defense.
The chance of victory was slim.
"So what do we do now,
Almasy?" Aaron asked, crossing his arms with a frown.
"We pray that Raine and
the others found a way to stop them before they could reach the borders.
If not, then we're going to find ourselves in a whole mess of fighting as soon
as we get off of this boat. I'd ready your weapons and psyche yourselves
up. If she didn't get there in time to stop the launch, then we've got to
support the defense squads as best we can."