There it stood, in all its ghastly glory, a twisted mix of man and machine. The crazed eyes of the cyborg brute bore down onto the single Nosretian, whose eyes looked back in confidence. Nosretian wore the new set of armour Tech had created, Tech’s words now ringing in his ears.
‘We’ve managed to adapt seaze metal, now certain parts of the armour will adapt telepathically. Say you’re after a blade on your arm. It’ll make the blade at it’ll make it sharp, enough for you to get through cyborg metal at the least and you know what they’re like to get through. It’s not too heavy a set of armour, if there is any extra weight that may be put onto the user then the boys have come up with extra devices that means you won’t even notice it by distributing the mass to a separate part of the armour. This is a prototype Nosretian, you break it and your budget pays for the armour and the repairs. I’ve already asked Shlais for clearance on that too’
Nosretian grinned and pulled his golden war hammer from the holster on the back of the suit, the exoskeleton powered up, and internal screen showed Nosretian a power and damage report, letting him know that all the armour was fully functional without a scratch. The internal screen also gave Nosretian a summary of his enemy. Instead of showing it up as a brute though, there was a simple name “N/A”.
‘Admiral, can you get me a diagnosis of this guy, it’s not showing up as a brute. There’s no mistaking a brute no matter what you say’ Nosretian ordered through the intercom.
‘When Miranda gets a spare minute I’ll ask her to look in on it for you. Probably a slight detail that hasn’t been looked into just yet, tread carefully Nosretian. I’ll keep you posted as the information comes in okay?’ the Admiral’s voice replied through the intercom.
Nosretian flexed his shoulders on the suit ‘suits me sir, I’ve got all the time in the world to play with my new friend. Keep this line open okay, just in case I need any form of assistance’
‘As it’s you I will, however let me remind you this is an actual battlefield, not a simulation. I have multiple craft in the air and they take my priority, not you. If the task is too dangerous for my men you are on your own. We’re spread thin by the cyborg ships as it is’
‘Fair enough sir, good hunting’
It was at that moment that the first pylon hit the ground and stuck in fast, a slight umbrella opened at the top of the pylon and it began to buzz with electrical life. The same happened for another four pylons until one landed next to the brute. Its human part now gave an evil grin as it used its massive legs to lift itself up.
‘Admiral, no reply required. Secondary task, could you please find out what is dropping those pylons, they’re powering the brute that’s all’ Nosretian asked politely.
One moment the brute was stood grinning madly at Nosretian, the next it had a war hammer of its own and was charging at Nosretian until it swung its black hammer around and smashed into the side of Nosretian’s golden armours head. Sending him down onto his left side, nearly letting go of his war hammer.
‘Ow’ he muttered, lifting himself up swiftly before the secondary finishing attack was made in the place his head had once been. Nosretian’s hammer swung round and hit the brute in the back making it stumble. A pylon shot down ahead of them. The brute managed to time its stumble so that he rolled and stopped in a crouching tiger position, it jumped above Nosretian drew a machine gun, its bullet belt was originating from the mechanical backside of the brute.
Nosretian dove to the side and began to run, heading for the outskirts of the pylons to try and power down the brute enough to get a little bit of an upper hand. Pylons were already being shot down to make up for the extra distance.
Nosretian turned to face the brute, holstered his hammer and pushed both of his hands in front of him, this stopped the brute for a minor second before it continued its run for Nosretian. Changing his tactics he decided it was time to try out the new guns on his suit. Drawing two of his own machine guns he began to try and shoot down the brute, again causing discomfort for the brute.
‘You know it is you I want to destroy with every essence of my being Brother Nosretian. Just accept your fate now before I have to find you again on the battlefield’ the brute roared, its booming voice sheer hatred.
‘What, may I ask, have I done to anger you so much? I, a peaceful priest of the Eternal Mother’ Nosretian shouted back, lifting his guns up so he was no longer shooting.
‘Peaceful and trying to pump my dead body full of lead? Suiting to such a merciless man as yourself Nosretian’
‘Admittedly, yes, I am the Dark Priest of our era, but that does not count. Necromancy isn’t entirely bad. I could have helped you if it wasn’t for how the Abbey of the Eternal Mother works’
‘You have the power to overrule any decision the Abbot makes’
‘That may be so, but I would never want to return you after you fulfilled your life. You wanted a glorious finish, you got it. You took out an entire legion of cyborgs at our last battle, now you are fighting alongside them. You lived your entire life fighting the chaos they brought to our world’
‘Yes I did Brother Nosretian, that I did’ the brute lifted his hand so that Nosretian’s hammer lifted from his back and flew into the grasp of the brute. The brute smiled and looked at the hammer ‘a perfect replica of a Dark Priest’s Forge Master, that’s blasphemy to your tradition you know. What would the other Dark Priest’s think?’
‘The Forge Master comes in all different sizes, that isn’t a replica’
‘Interesting, the suit has adapted to be powered by magic rather than electricity, much like your Flame Rider. These pylons won’t be able to help you as they help me then’ the brute grinned, it then threw the hammer into the distance so that Nosretian should power down.
‘Okay Nosretian, it isn’t a brute. This is a new type of cyborg, codename Harbinger. It is built to be a killing machine. We’ve checked the DNA on the husk, you’re not going to believe who it is’
‘I know Admiral, we’re having a little chat. Where’s my hammer? Track it now’
‘You’re hammer’s not too far I should hope. Oh goodness, you’re power levels are getting critical, north. I’ve sent a retrieval team, they’ll be there as soon as possible. Hold on Nosretian, and don’t leave the pylons, they won’t power you completely, but enough to fight him off until my team gets there’
‘Take your time, I’m only losing a little oxygen in this suit, the filters powered down’
The brute took advantage of the situation and dived onto Nosretian, hitting his head with both hands, roaring in hate, in anger. Yet there were tears in the hulks eyes, a pain, a lonely warrior left to die.
‘I’m sorry brother’ there was a sudden flux of power as Nosretian used his own magic to power the suit and threw the brute into the air in the direction that his hammer had been thrown. Nosretian slowly got up, he waited a little bit so he could power up enough to get a good amount of oxygen back in his system.
‘Don’t worry about the retrieval team Admiral, I’m on my way there. Our little friend is waiting for me there’
‘What? My men are already there Nosretian, get your backside there and give them back up with that thing. They’re scouts, not suits’
Nosretian rolled his eyes and began to run in the direction he had just thrown the brute, forcing anything in his way into the ground. There were scraps of metal left behind Nosretian, having taken out a good thirteen cyborgs in the process of reaching the team.
The brute was currently holding a Sailsen scout by the ankle, its other hand was holding a chainsaw just inches from the Sailsen’s head.
‘Leave them alone Marcus, get out your hammer and allow me mine and we’ll finish this like we would at the Abbey. No magic, no fire arms. You, me and two hammers. Don’t take me for a fool not recognising my own enchanted hammer by the way, I’d recognise Erika anywhere’ Nosretian shouted.
Marcus dropped the Sailsen and let it run away, the scout picked up a gun and began to shoot at the oncoming Cyborgs that were advancing on them with wicked grins.
Nosretian raised his right hand and his golden war hammer was returned to him, powering his suit up. More pylons were dropped around them giving Marcus an extra burst of electricity.
‘You’re Admiral has failed you in taking out the pylon dispenser then? An ingenious contraption really, any ship that tries to take it down gets completely shut down. You’re Admiral would never try it more than once, he’ll know the consequences’
A pod landed in between the two of them, closely followed by a crate.
‘Happy hunting Nosretian’ the Admiral said through the intercom.
‘Now, what were you talking about Marcus, like I said, let’s deal with this man to man’ Nosretian charged, hammer slightly behind to his right, he swung aiming for Marcus’ head.
Marcus ducked then brought his own hammer round taking out Nosretian’s left leg, watching the Dark Priest do a flip in the air and land on his side. Still holding the hammer Nosretian managed to control it so it landed onto Marcus’ head with a crunch. Now when Marcus was punching, battering, Nosretian’s head he would have to go through the helmet which was reinforced, Marcus didn’t have such luck. Sure his skull was reinforced with metal since his resurrection, but not enough to stop the hammer from crushing his skull.
Nosretian landed but didn’t try to get up, he had already seen the life signs of his adversary, and there weren’t any after he landed. He couldn’t bear to look around and see the dead Harbinger.
‘Good job Nosretian, I’m sorry it had to finish like this. The cyborg forces are retreating, we’ve sent in a group of suits to finish off anything that wants to stick around’
‘Make sure Marcus is picked up, we need to see what they are doing with the brutes now or else we are not going to survive much longer in this war. The Warlord is going to create helmets for the Harbingers I’m sure, the only real weak point’ Nosretian replied.
‘Take your time getting back to base Nosretian, Shlais has asked if you do want to take some time off, if you want to take any leave’
‘I’m fine Admiral, it’s not like I really knew him’
The Admiral didn’t reply to that, he knew the past between Nosretian and Brother Marcus. They had trained together at the Abbey in Origiara.
‘All I can say Admiral is this, the Warlord had better come up with a new upgrade for the Harbinger’s or else he will not be safe. I’m going to have to pay for this suit now as well so the Warlord has that bill to pay’.
The Admiral chuckled ‘first drinks are on me Nosretian’.