The Commander of the warrior ships got word that they now had a clear signal on where to send the first group of warriors. What worried the one giving the Commander that message was the ship was detecting no kind of defenses for the planet.
“It could be we have caught them by surprise, however, we will not take any chances. Send down the first group and have them tune in to frequency 116.”
The Commander now called to the one in charge of research.
“What have you got for me?”
“Commander I am making progress, but a lot of the files I need have been classified.”
“Classified? That does not make any sense! Why would files that contain information considered by most to be myths and legends, as ones needing to be classified? What clearance level is required to access these files?”
“It is a code I do not recognize Commander.”
“Transfer the information to me,” the Commander ordered.
After examining the file and the access authorization required, the Commander also noticed something else odd.
“This really is concerning. Not only is the clearance level required extremely high, whoever locked these files down has encoded a tracer link, to see who has tried to access them.” The Commander mumbled.
“Okay, I am not going to take any more risks, without proper information.”
The Commander went down to the research department.
“I am going to need access to your station, and for security reasons, I need you to leave until I have been able to open these files”
The first wave of warriors were sent down with transports that were suitable for the area they were assigned. This species of warriors a fully automated fighting machine. Charlie had spent a lot of time researching the different “warriors for hire” species, before hiring them. Each warrior had an array of weapons and defenses available to them. This particular species also was able to take on the appearance of whatever species against which it was fighting. This allowed them to mingle with their enemy, if necessary, to gain additional information that was not available to them before engaging them in battle. The transports that were sent, also were designed to blend in with the type of transports that were used by their enemies. Everything was far advanced of anything other species.
This first wave contained fifty-one warriors. A command center was set up and one warrior was designated to care for that post. The others were divided up in to ten groups of five each.
The area they transferred down to was not where sensors told them they would be. The command centers first order of business was to figure out exactly where they were. Mr. Chambers had managed to divert there landing signal to put them in the hottest spot he could find. Even though these paid warriors were equipped and trained for all kinds of climates, the heat did take a toll on some of there equipment. The Lone Ranger was right at home with both the heat and the terrain. It was the Lone Ranger’s signal that the warriors first detected. It was decided that two groups would trace and destroy the target.
“I hate this game of hide and seek that Mr. Chambers is having me play.” The Lone Ranger complained to himself, as he headed towards some mountains. As he climbed one of the steeper ones, he could see the twenty robotic type warriors in the distance headed his way.
“Okay Chamber’s they have taken the bait, but I sure don’t get how hiding in a cave is going to work.”
The cave he chose was over a mile in length and had one small hidden opening in the roof at the very end.
“The target is held up in a cave three hundred yards away,” one of the warriors reported to the one leading the group.
“Lets get this over with, my circuits are already beginning to overheat.”
When they reached the mouth of the cave, the one in command was told that this was the only way in, and only way out.
“Very good, this should only take a few minutes, I need five with me, everyone else stay here and make sure he does not somehow get by us.”
The Commander picked his five and just started to enter the cave when a familiar sound echoed from deep in the cave,
“Sir, is that a Rus?” One warrior asked.
“Your circuits most be over heating, you know that creature does not exist here on earth!”
They took two more steps and the roar occurred again. All but the leader stopped. He turned and not only saw those in his party had stopped, but also all the others that were at the entrance to the cave had backed up several paces.
This robotic species was known throughout the universe as one of the bravest, most aggressive species for hire. They had few enemies and had developed an almost unbeatable strategy. Yet, one of their few achilleas heels, was the creature known as Rus. This serpent type creature grows up to forty feet long and has the ability to raise up to over half its length. Neither of these is a concern for these warriors. Their concern is that this creature shoots out a stream that is highly corrosive. They are extremely accurate with this spray and for each foot they are able to elevate themselves, they add twenty feet to the distance they are able to project this spray.
Out in the open, three warriors could produce enough fire power to injure the creature so the it would retreat with minimum damage to the warriors. Five or more would kill the beast. The Rus, however, rarely came out in the open, caves and underground tunnels is where most lived and were hunted.
The roars were starting to increase in frequency, which normally indicated they were on the hunt.
“Perhaps the Rus is already taking care of our mark,” one of the warriors suggested.
“I am telling you there are no Rus on this planet.” The leader stated.
His group did not seemed convinced.
“Command center, this is 00989, Please confirm life signatures for our location.”
There was no response.
The one in charge repeated the transmission three more times, each time there was no reply.
“There is no Rus! Now we are going to proceed with this assignment before this heat causes any more malfunctions in our equipment! Now move!”
With every other step the roar of the Rus grew louder. The loose dirt and rocks on the walls of the cave would fall to the floor with each roar. The warriors moved slowly and cautiously. The Rus. Had no natural enemies, but from time to time they did find themselves on the defensive. If a Rus felt threatened it would excrete one of the foulest smells in the known universe.
The warriors came to a bend in the cave. The roars at this point had become less frequent.
“Surly the Rus has devoured are mark by now,” one suggested.
The Leader blew his top.
“There is no Rus!” He said a lot louder than he meant to.
At that a roar occurred that rocked the cave so bad that it knocked the warriors to the ground. All including the leader fled towards the entrance of the tunnel. When the emerged, they saw all the other warriors as dead on the ground. Before their logic circuits could figure out what was going on, the Lone Ranger who was now on top of the cave on the outside, hit each of the remaining warrior with his special bullets. With the accuracy of his aim, he was able to deactivate those who exited the cave.
The Lone Ranger with the help of his horse, dragged all the warriors into the cave, and using the leaders communication box, reported a pair of Rus. In the area, then the Command Center communication with that group was cut back off.
The warrior at the Command Center was going crazy trying to figure out why the communication between the C.C. and the warriors was malfunctioning. The report of the Rus, and then the communication being cut off worried him even more.
It was not pleasant situation back up on the warriors ship. The Commander of that ship was going crazy trying to get the communications restored to the warriors that had been sent to the planet. She was also constantly being hounded by Charlie for an update.
After not being able to re-establish communication with the Command Center, the Commander of the ship took a calculated risk, and sent down a small group from the ship to see if they could assist with restoring communications. The Commander of the ship also was pushing her officer to finish the research on what kind of power source their ultimate mark (Mr. Chambers) was using. Everything that Charlie had sent them was not adding up to twenty-first century earth technology.
With no instructions for the ship’s Commander, the warrior at the Command Center had no choice to proceed with the original plan.
“I am now getting a clear signal on our second mark. Leader 443, take your groups and proceed to alpha, alpha, 6Y3K.005.”
The leader responded and those warriors headed in that direction, just before the repair group materialized. Once again, the communication between the warrior leader and the Communication Center was fine, until they reached the edge of the forest. The time it took to make it to that spot on the edge of the forest had taken a toll on the warriors circuitry. Not that they were not well built for ground activity, but the temperature in the arid land in which they landed and had to travel had risen by 30%.
“We will take a moment to make sure all our circuits are at 100% before we divide up into groups to flush out our mark,” the leader instructed.
As with the first group of warriors that were sent out, suddenly, all communication with the Command Center was cut off. The leader of this group had never seen so many communication malfunctions on a mission before. This was especially so on such a primitive planet. He was a well-seasoned leader and did not want to take the chance of more malfunctions. He thus decided to keep all the warriors together. This would take a little longer to destroy their mark, but they would have no issues accomplishing this goal…so he thought.
It was soon apparent that, in the mind of the leader, that there should have been more research into this planets weather patterns. For not two minutes into there march into the forest, it began to pour down rain. Rain and wind alone really had no effect on these warriors. However, the intense and continual lightening did.
The charged particles all around them made it impossible to accurately navigate the thick forest. Their thick shielding protected them from any direct hits that they might receive, yet again as many strikes that were happening around them was interfering with increasingly of their circuitry.
“We will take shelter in that cave long enough to reset our defenses to not be inhibited by the weather.” The leader ordered.
This was exactly what Robin Hood was hoping for.