Star Wars: Blizzard

Star Wars: Blizzard

Status: Finished

Genre: Science Fiction

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Details

Status: Finished

Genre: Science Fiction

Houses:

Summary

Imperial forces slowly close in on Echo base. Rebel soldiers must hold them off long enough for the rebel transport ships to escape, and this is a tale of a few of the brave rebels who fought the Empire there and then on the snowy planet of Hoth.
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Summary

Imperial forces slowly close in on Echo base. Rebel soldiers must hold them off long enough for the rebel transport ships to escape, and this is a tale of a few of the brave rebels who fought the Empire there and then on the snowy planet of Hoth.

Content

Submitted: March 14, 2017

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Content

Submitted: March 14, 2017

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The rebel soldier was used to the cold. He had been on Hoth for a few months, and despite taking a few weeks to get used to the climate, he felt strangely comfortable here.

Never did he feel so cold in his entire life before today.

He clutched his A280 blaster rifle in his hand nervously, squatting in the snow covered trench. The trench was hastily dug, and wires were strewn across the floor, powering the turrets guarding the area. He peered out of the trench and scanned the white, rocky surface for the umpteenth time. Nothing.

A hand rested on his shoulder. He turned, and a fellow commrade gave him an encouraging nod, sending the snow which had accumulated on top of his cap plummeting to the ground. Crendar managed a weak smile, before gazing back into the distance. Still nothing.

He felt like a fresh recruit even though he had fought in battles before.

Flames lit up the surroundings. The battle was coming to an end in that particular cavern on Sullust, and after days of street fighting against the Imperials, Crendar was exhausted. He propped his rifle against his side and sat down against a wall while his fellow rebel soldiers ensured that the last of the stormtroopers had been neutralised. That was when the message came through their comlinks. "They blew up the bloody Death Star!" the company cheered, punching fists into the air. Crendar was in no mood to celebrate-his home planet of Alderaan had been destroyed, and he was still depressed. The best he could do was to manage a smile.

Crendar's snow-covered comlink burst to life along with those of the other troops stationed in the trench."Scouts have reported Imperial walkers heading our way, and we think that they are targeting the shield generator. The general has issued code 1-5, and you all must defend the generator until all the transports are away."

Crendar muttered a quick prayer. Fellow rebel troopers were unloading crates from transport speeders into the trench, and he felt that lending a hand would distract him from the incoming threat. He grabbed a heavy crate from a comrade, laid it onto the ground and removed the lid, revealing a bunch of thermal detonators. Nearby soldiers came and grabbed some of the equipment, and Crendar did the same, storing them in a large sling pouch which he always wore during combat.

The snow was getting heavier, and visibility levels were dropping steadily. Frost started to appear on Crendar's combat jacket and his cap, and the icy wind was stinging his eyes, so he decided to put on his googles before quickly grabbing his rifle and training the sights on the horizon again. Any second now.

Faint, mechanical noises could be heard.

They were not coming from the turrets around him-he was absolutely certain that they were here.

"Get ready! They have arrived!" a yell from someone further down the trench could be heard.

"Clank, clank, clank..."

Crendar grabbed his macrobinoculars and peered into the distance through it. The thick snow was obscuring his vision, but he could make out the outlines of several tall shapes looming over the landscape.

"Incoming!" "Get ready!" Came shouts from nearby rebel troopers.

Everyone leaned against the side of the trench and trained their blasters at the approaching figures. Red blasts shot out from the figures without warning, and a section of the trench further down to Crendar's left was obliterated. A plume of white snow and smoke shot into the sky.

Panic engulfed some of the troopers, but Crendar forced himself to stay calm. He could see the figures clearly now through the scope of his rifle-the AT-AT walkers were slowly treading their way towards them, their giant metal legs allowing them to traverse the rocky terrain with ease. As if the situation wasn't bad enough, smaller, more nimble AT-STs trodded along by their side, and Crendar almost missed the snowtroopers accompanying them on foot as their white suits blended perfectly well with the snow covered ground.

The DF.9 turrets around the trench turned, aimed and opened fire, unleashing bolts that shot towards their targets with deadly precision. Crendar watched them as they slammed into the giant AT-ATs...

...nothing happened. They were barely affected by the attack from the DF.9s, and continued on their path. Crendar's heart sank.

"Forget about the giant walkers, target the ground troops!" A rebel trooper near Crendar shouted at the nearest DF.9 turret, and its crew changed their target and fired a second bolt at the advancing snowtroopers. There was an explosion and through the scope of his rifle, Crendar could see several white-clad bodies now sprawled onto the ground. The others did not stop to attend to them-they continued dashing towards the rebels, opening fire with their E-11 blasters.

The rebels exchanged fire with the approaching snowtroopers, and bolts sizzled through the air in different directions. Crendar aimed his rifle at a snowtrooper running down a hill  and he squeezed the trigger. The first shot missed, but his second bolt caught the snowtrooper in the chest, and he tumbled down the hill.

A bolt struck the ground next to Crendar, tossing up snow and smoke. He quickly ducked into a trench, not wanting to die so quickly minutes into the battle. He looked to his left and right-his comrades were busy fighting as well, standing, taking a shot and ducking back into the trench to avoid enemy fire.

He then scrambled to his feet and peered out of the trench. The snowtroopers were advancing relentlessly, so did the giant AT-ATs. The leading AT-AT's head turned and opened fire with its cannons, and the DF.9 turret near Crendar exploded into flames, the shockwave slamming Crendar into the ground.

His ears ringed, and he looked around dizzly. The sounds of combat were now faint, but then they slowly returned. Crendar found himself still lying on the ground, and he quickly climbed back onto his feet. He turned to look at what was left of the DF.9 turret, which was now reduced to nothing but a flaming wreck. Bodies of several rebel troopers unlucky enough to have stood too close to the turret now laid on the ground.

He then turned, aimed at the AT-AT and opened fire, and his bolts sizzled harmlessly against its armour. Another blast from the snowtroopers forced him to duck back into the trench.

He felt a pat against his back. He turned, and the rebel trooper panted:"Retreat back to the second trench-we can't hold this one."

Crendar nodded and ran down the trench with the trooper, leaping over bodies of unfortunate rebels and ducking under fire. They managed to call several others to join them in their retreat.

The group sprinted down the last length of the first trench and hopped out. Crendar knew that this was the dangerous part-running through the vast, open area between the two trenches. They were completely exposed and there was little cover save for a few rocks here and there.

Bolts shot past him as he led the group towards the second trench. He could see from the corner of his eye that other rebel groups were doing the same. Then he heard the distinctive "paw-paw" sound of the AT-AT cannons, and the group to his left vanished in a massive fireball.

His feet dug into the deep snow with every step, slowing him down. His lungs were burning, and his skin, on the other hand, was freezing. The second trench was still a distance away.

Snowspeeders appeared over the horizon and shot towards the Imperial forces, opening fire at the AT-ATs. Crendar turned back to glance at them as they blasted away harmlessly against the AT-ATS, before swerving away to get ready for another run, before looking back in the direction of the second trench.

They made it. The rebels dived into the cover of the second trench. It also had its fair share of turrets-several DF.9s and a few 1.4 FD P-towers. Crendar had used them before, and they were easy to use-it had a single laser cannon mounted in the center of a wide dish and could deal reasonable damage to most armoured vehicles. However, he looked at the rebels operating them as they fired at the AT-ATs, but their shots, too, did no damage to the Imperial behemoths.

Crendar made sure to avoid stepping on the cables strewn along the trench, and peered out with his rifle again. An AT-ST approached. He felt his heart sink even further. "Incoming!" he shouted at the nearby rebels.

It had an avian-like walking style, wobbling from side to side with every step. Crendar knew better than to underestimate it-despite its rickety gait, he knew from his briefings that it wielded devastating firepower which could wipe out any infantry battalion with ease.

It's "head" turned from left to right, firing at rebels along the trench with the twin cannons mounted on its chin. Crendar took aim and fired, and his shots dissipated harmlessly on its armour.

"Use your detonators!" a nearby rebel yelled, before hurling a thermal detonator at the incoming walker. There was a faint beep and Crendar looked on as the explosion threw up snow and dust at the AT-ST's feet. It leaned to a side, losing its balance for a moment before regaining it and continued trudging forward. Crendar opened his pouch and grabbed a thermal detonator as well, and raised his left hand to point at his target before hurling it with all his might with his right arm. It bounced off the AT-ST's cabin, dropped to the ground, beeped and "BANG!", the fireball engulfed its legs.

Crendar's hope lifted for a moment as the AT-ST shook unsteadily, but it still regained its balance and turned its "head" in his direction.

Crendar gulped and quickly sprinted down the trench. The area where he had been a second ago was reduced to rock and dust with a few blasts from the AT-ST's cannons. He threw a glance behind his back, and saw the AT-ST walking down the trench towards him, either leg stomping forwards on both sides on the trench. The other rebel troopers also started to flee in the direction of Crendar, but some noticed it too late-they were killed by the AT-ST's cannons. The same rebel trooper who had suggested the idea of using thermal detonators suddenly grabbed him and yanked him to a side, saving him from a blast. The pair threw themselves onto the side of the trench, staring at the smoking crater in front of them. Crendar turned to look at the AT-ST-it was directly in front of them, but did not seem to notice them as it continued to trudge further down the trench, pursuing the other rebels.

"Thanks," Crendar panted, lowering his rifle in exhaustion.

"Welcome. Name's Jakerar, you can call me Jake." came the reply. He turned to stare at the AT-ST's back. "You?"

"Crendar."

"Alright, Crendar, come with me." he started sprinting towards the AT-ST. Crendar widened his eyes. "What are you-"

Jake caught up to the walker and leapt, grabbing onto the left leg's shin strut.

Crendar sighed, and ran towards him as Jake continued to climb upwards. The walker's crew did not seem to notice him as he reached the joint connecting the leg to the turret base beneath the "head".

Crendar's legs hurt as he ran, but he forced them to do so and caught up to the AT-ST, which was still blasting away at rebels further down the trench. He quickly slung his rifle around his shoulder, jumped out of the trench and leapt again towards the right leg. His palms slid on the slippery, cold metal surface, and he would have missed the leg had he not been able to grab the ankle joint of the leg. It rose into the air, preparing for another step, and Crendar rose with it. Then leg then stomped back into the ground, and Crendar almost lost his grip.

He quickly found a grip and began climbing up the leg. The shin strut had no obvious grips or footrests, so he had to hug it like he once did to a tree trunk from Yavin 4 to continue to make his way up the ever-moving leg. His hands grabbed onto the joint and he pushed himself up onto it. There, he could feel the heat from the chin cannons as they fired at other rebels. He then looked around for Jake, but could not see him as he was on the opposite side of the AT-ST. He assumed that he was climbing towards the top, so Crendar decided to do so as well.

He grabbed the light blaster cannon mounted on the right side of the "head", praying that the crew would not fire it as they were already busy with the chin mounted cannons. If they did, his hands would be fried.

The AT-ST's rickety gait made it hard for him to continue climbing, as he felt that he would be thrown off at any moment. He eventually climbed his way to the top, where he had to squat and hold on to the entry hatch handrail to prevent himself from falling off. He found that Jake was already there, and he was just about to force open the hatch when a red bolt flashed past them.

Crendar turned back and saw Snowtroopers gathering behind the AT-ST and firing at them. The AT-ST's crew still seemed oblivious to the intruders atop the vehicle, and the walker continued to chase the rebels down the trench.

Crendar lifted his rifle, took aim and squeezed the trigger, and his A280 spat out a few bolts which struck the ground a distance away from the Snowtroopers' feet. The constant shaking from the AT-ST made it hard for him to take aim. Jake was busy trying to force the hatch open. Another shot from the Snowtroopers struck the metal surface of the walker, leaving a black mark. Crendar quickly retaliated by opening his pouch, grabbing a thermal detonator and hurling it down the AT-ST at the Snowtroopers who had been gathering behind the machine's feet.

A few of them managed to sprint away in time after the beep, but most were killed by the explosion which tossed up white-clad bodies and snow alike, rocking the AT-ST. Crendar almost tumbled off had Jake not grabbed his arm in time. "Thanks!" He heaved a sigh of relief, peering back at the remaining Snowtroopers.

Jake, exasperated, slid out a DL-18 pistol, aimed it at the hatch and fired, causing sparks to fly off the top of the walker. The hatch was open. "Where did you get one of those?" Crendar inquired, pointing at the pistol.

"I have my ways," Jake replied, before grabbing a thermal detonator of his own. He pressed the red button and hurled it down the open hatch, before grabbing Crendar and leaping off the AT-ST.

They landed on the surprisingly soft, snow covered ground. Crendar had expected it to be literally rock-hard.

There was another loud explosion, and the AT-ST collapsed with its cabin now blown up. It fell forwards, therefore missing the two culprits which were responsible for bringing it down.

Jake and Crendar both punched the air in triumph.

"BOOM!" The ground next to time erupted, throwing Crendar back onto the ground again. He landed hard, and, once again dazed, he slowly got to his feet. The familiar ringing in his ears returned, and then slowly subsided. His right shoulder ached, and he was dismayed to find that his sleeve was stained with red.

He grabbed his rifle from the ground and looked around for Jake. He was on the ground too. The AT-AT which Crendar assumed to be responsible for the blast was slowly approaching, towering above the two rebels. He quickly sprinted towards Jake, heaved him off the ground and shouted:" It's time to go mate! Get up!"

Jake snapped back into focus, grabbed his pistol and they both dashed in the opposite direction of the Walkers, joining the masses of infantry pulling back from the second trench.

Blaster and cannon fire streaked over their heads as they ran, so did the rebel Snowspeeders which tried their best to slow down the Imperial behemoths. Crendar watched while running as they skimmed across the snowy surface, opening fire on the AT-ATs. Their attempts were yet again futile and they turned away to prepare for another run. One of them was hit by a shot from an AT-AT's cannons, and it burst into flames, its wreckage crashing not too far from Crendar and Jake.

In the distance, yet another GR-75 medium transport lifted off, accompanied by two X-Wings as it ascended. Crendar hoped that he could be on one of them soon.

The rebels reached the first trench. AT-AT fire decimated most of those who reached there first, blowing up the structures and defences.

Crendar and Jake were forced to leap over the flaming remains of the trench and its defenders. He recognised one of the corpses lying on the ground as he leapt over him-it was the rebel whom he had played Sabacc with in the mess just two days earlier.

Echo base was not far from Outpost Beta, but to run there across the barren, snow covered surface, exposed to the Imperials, would be plain suicide. They needed a form of transport.

They did not have one. They had to risk it.

The ground beneath Crendar shook as blast after blast from the AT-ATs' heavy cannons, and their footsteps, rocked the earth. His feet was screaming in agony, and every strand of muscle in his thighs felt like they were burning. Jake was ahead of him, and they were sprinting up a rocky hill. They reached the top, dove for cover and returned fire with their rifles for a few minutes, before continuing their journey to Echo base.

There was a loud thud from behind him, and he spared a glance over his shoulder. An AT-AT was down! He did not see what had happened, but it was lying on the ground, immobile. Another Snowspeeder came to finish it off with a few shots to the vulnerable walker's neck, causing explosions to rip through the hull of the AT-AT.

The moment of triumph was short lived. The other AT-ATs still continued on their march towards Echo base, unleashing blast after blast at the fleeing rebels. An explosion to Crendar's left tossed up several rebel bodies and snow into the air, and the shockwave nearly forced him off his feet.

There it was-Echo base! Its blast doors were wide open to allow the fleeing rebel troopers to enter.

Their legs plowed through the final stretches of snow, and Crendar and Jake finally made it into Echo base.

The hangar was in disarray as Snowspeeders flew back in, their hulls suffering from damage and with X-Wings taking off to escort the transports off-planet.

Ground crew, droids, pilots and ground troopers alike scurried about the base, and Crendar and Jake made their way through the hangar, past rows of X-Wings and an odd-looking freighter with a-was that a Wookie?-fiddling with its wiring.

The transports were almost all gone. The heavy footsteps from the AT-ATs were sending ice and snow plummeting down from the ceiling. Alarms blared as the two made their way down a corridor towards another hangar.

"Warning, Snowtroopers have entered the base. I repeat, Snowtroopers have..." static abruptly cut off the announcement made through the comms.

The distant sound of blaster fire could be heard. Crendar took a gulp before continuing to follow Jake down the corridor into the next hangar. They peered in. There was no sign of any remaining transports, but several rebels lay on the ground, motionless with holes burnt into their torsos.

Crendar instinctively raised his rifle and scanned the surroundings.

"There!" came an electronically muffled voice.

Crendar spinned to find Snowtroopers advancing towards them from the gate.

Jake quickly pulled Crendar with him as he dived behind a Snowspeeder which was parked close to a wall. Red bolts shot past them, and some struck the Snowspeeder itself.

Jake peered out, fired a few shots and dived back into cover. "We're outnumbered."

"Yeah, I haven't noticed that!" Crendar snapped back sarcastically, before stepping out and squeezing several more shots out before dodging back in again. He winced as a bolt struck the hood of the Snowspeeder above him.

A metal sphere rolled towards them from underneath the Snowspeeder and bumped into Crendar's lap. Realization quickly dawned upon them. They immediately leapt out from behind the Snowspeeder just as the thermal detonator blew the Snowspeeder up in a raging ball of fire.

The debris settled as the pair got up to their feet. Dodging several bolts, Crendar quickly dragged Jake behind a stack of crates. A Snowtrooper yelled and ran for them, and Crendar quickly used the butt of his rifle to knock him off his feet before he could fire. Jake followed up by blasting the fallen trooper in the chest with his blaster pistol, leaving a smoking hole.

Crendar expected more to come. None followed.

Then there was the sound of heavy footsteps-much heavier than those of Snowtroopers. Should he risk peeping out from his cover?

There was the sound of deep rasping, as though it had came from a machine. The footsteps grew louder. 

Crendar turned back to find other rebels behind him and Jake, cowering behind other crates and vehicles in the hangar. He felt confident that together, they could handle whatever the Empire could throw at them.

With a loud cry, he dashed out from behind the crates and leveled his rifle to prepare to fire.

The sight sent a chill down his spine. The black suit and cloak, the triangular grill on the mask-he immediately felt something grabbing onto his neck. The rasping sounds were unmistakable. Crendar dropped his rifle and started to choke. He began to claw at invisible fingers digging into his flesh as the black figure calmly strode down the hangar with the Snowtroopers in tow.

Crendar struggled to turn his head, and saw Jake opening fire with his pistol, only for the bolts to be deflected by a crimison blade which lit up the dark interior of the hangar. Jake was cut down and the figure began to move further into the base, towards the other rebels, who desperately fired at him while retreating. The figure deflected the bolts effortlessly, while slaughtering nearby rebels who got too close without a second thought.

"Where is Skywalker?" was the last sentence Crendar could hear before he was thrown onto the hard ground, blacking out.


© Copyright 2017 RazeWing. All rights reserved.

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