PFC Kyle Harris
1st Battalion 6th Marines, U.S.M.C.
Washington Square Park, New York December 20, 2012 Day 1 21:50:19 PM
6th Marine Division:
2ndLt. John Cortez
MSgt. Ronald Romill
PFC Jerry Miles
Sgt. Eric Kresten
PFC Kyle Harris
LCpl. Zach Mc'Neil (medic)
SSgt. Michael Nomez
FSgt. Frank Piercen
Pvt. Craig Fisher
Cpl. Steven Corey (MG Gunner)
Sgt. Alex Lockey (sniper)
LCpl. Joe Stanar (MG Gunner)
Cpl. Paul Jordes
PFC Christopher Taylor
LCpl. Shaun Linelles (radio operator)
Billbird Six-one: “Five seconds, standby.” Smoke rises from the Financial District. We can all see it from the open ramp. Below us, stands the evacuation park with all the trees cut down. It is filled with tanks, armored vehicles, troops, civilians, and evac choppers. The Osprey lands beside a water fountain, which is replaced with a set of tents in the center.
Crew Chief: “Go! Go!”
MSgt. Romill: “Move your ass, Marines!” We run outside and head inside the tent. A set of civilians replaces our seats in the Osprey.
Lt. Cortez: “Piercen, Nomez, split up our squad with Bravo Company! Romill, with me!”
FSgt. Piercen: “Aye, sir!”
Cobra Pilot: “Two-six actual, this is Viking One-one. We are coming from the northeast. TOT, five seconds.” First Sergeant Piercen leads our squad to Bravo Company, ‘Black Iron September Two.’ Two AH-1 Cobras fly overhead, firing rockets to one of the streets ahead of the park.
FSgt. Piercen: “Marines! Set up a perimeter!” Romill comes running behind to Piercen. I turn around to see both of them talking just when I’m about to jump in a foxhole.
Sgt. Kresten: “What’s going on?”
FSgt. Piercen: “Staff Sergeant Nomez!!” Nomez looks up at Piercen.
FSgt. Piercen: “Take half of the squad! And go with Bravo Company to evacuate a pinned down squad on Houston Street!”
SSgt. Nomez: “Got it!” Nomez looks around our squad, and points at Eric, Private First Miles, Sergeant Alex Lockey, Fisher, Corey, Taylor and I.
SSgt. Nomez: “You boys! On me! Let’s go!”
Pvt. Fisher: “The fuck’s going on?”
SSgt. Nomez: “Let’s go! Let’s go!”
Marine: “Bravo Company! Move out!” The six of us crawl out of the foxholes and follow Staff Sergeant Nomez.
Sgt. Kresten: “Staff Sergeant, what’s going on?!”
SSgt. Nomez: “Lieutenant Cortez wants us along with Black Iron September to evac two squads that are pinned down in Houston Street.”
Pvt. Fisher: “Why can’t we just send in air support to do all the shit?” We reach one corner of Sullivan Street while Bravo Company runs across to the opposite side.
Marine: “Cold Steel, this is Black Iron. We’ve got heavy fog at least a hundred-fifty meters down.”
Sea Knight Pilot: “All units stationed in Washington Square Park, be advised. You got heavy fog approaching to you a hundred-fifty meters and crawling close, over.” I poke my head over the corner, looking at the thick fog a block and a half away, rising close to the roofs of the buildings.
Pvt. Fisher: “We’re going in there?” A fighter roars overhead, followed by two Ospreys and a Cobra approaching the evac park.
SSgt. Nomez: “Marines! Let’s go find our men!”
Cpl. Corey: “Move! Move!”
Marine: “Black Iron! Move out!” All of us plus ten men of Bravo Company jog down Sullivan Street. We make it to the first intersection, and the fog draws closer. We slow down.
PFC Miles: “Jesus. Are we really going in there?”
Marine: “Worth a try, kid.” My heart races and my adrenaline rush through my body with excitement and fear. The gunfire and explosions still rages all around us.
SSgt. Nomez: “Let’s go. Stick close together. Black Iron, take point.”
Marine: “Roger.” The ten men walk in the fog, guns raised. We follow them behind as close as possible.
SSgt. Nomez: “Keep your radios on.”
The fog is incredibly thick. I can barely see anything in front of me. Just a few blurs from the Marines ahead.
Marine: “Marines. Watch your fire. There could be civilians anywhere.” We approach two burning cars, one flipped on its side right next to the other.
PFC Miles: “Jesus. I can’t see shit.”
PFC Taylor: “Same here.” We can hear a couple of fighters flying over our heads, followed by a rocket seconds later.
SSgt. Nomez: “Marines. Keep your eyes peeled. Don’t know when these things will strike.”
Pvt. Fisher: “How the hell can we tell? I can’t see a Goddamn thing.” Gunfire rages all around us as we continue to walk down the fogged street. A couple minutes later, we walk past a burning Humvee on the sidewalk to the right.
Sgt. Lockey: “You think that belonged to the squad?”
SSgt. Nomez: “Just keep your head in it, Sergeant.”
Marine: (gunfire in background) “Black Iron September Two! This is Echo Winter Nine! We’re pinned down on West Houston Street! Where the hell are you?!”
Marine: “Echo Winter Nine, this is Black Iron. We’re a block and a half from your position. Keep holding your position. We’re on our way, over.”
Marine: (gunfire in background) “Better make it fast! Hostiles are slowly breaching through! Fuck!! Get to cover!!” (static)
Marine: “Echo Winter Nine. Echo Winter Nine, please respond.” We wait for a response from the pinned down squad. Nothing.
Marine: “Damn it! Can’t reach ‘em, sir.”
Marine: “Alright. Staff Sergeant Nomez, take your squad and…” Our ears were suddenly deafened by a screech like someone put two microphones together at full volume. We kneel down with our hands clamped over our ears, trying to drain out the sound. Then, the sound drains quickly after almost fifteen seconds. I open my eyes, relieved thinking it would never end.
PFC Miles: “The hell was that?” We stand up and look around, noticing the fog cleared up like it was never here.
Sgt. Kresten: “Where’d the fog go?”
Marine: “The hell just happened, Lieutenant?”
Marine: “Don’t know, Corporal. Just keep…”
PFC Taylor: “Twelve o’clock!!” We turn down the street, spotting a tank flying in our direction.
Marine: “Fuck! Move!” We dodge right and left as the tank bounces right passes us and screeches into a car. I dive behind a taxi next to Lockey, Eric, and Miles.
Marine: “Is everyone okay?! Is everyone alright?!”
SSgt. Nomez: “You guys up?!” Staff Sergeant Nomez gets up from behind a thin tree and runs over to an intersection a few meters ahead with a couple of Bravo Company.
Marine: “Clear! Move out!” My heart is throbbing under my rib cage after the incident.
Sgt. Lockey: “Harris. You okay?”
PFC Harris: “Yeah. I… I’m fine.” Lockey helps me up and we lightly jog to the intersection and line up. I point my ACOG scope at a street sign above the stoplight; Bleecker Street. Just at the edge of the intersection across, is a wall of fog that is just standing there.
PFC Harris: “You seein’ this fog?”
Sgt. Lockey: “Yeah. Doesn’t look like any ordinary fog.”
Marine: “Twelve o’clock!”
Marine: “Twelve o’clock!”
Cpl. Corey: “Weapons ready!” I take a couple steps out of the line behind the trunk of a destroyed car and aim my M16A4 down the fog-covered street across the intersection. A figure slightly appears through the fog. I place my finger on the trigger, ready to fire. As the figure limps out of the fog, the shape clears up.
SSgt. Nomez: “Hold fire! Hold fire!”
Marine: “Don’t shoot! One of our guys!”
Marine: “Jenkins, Gaines! Help him out!” Two Marines run out to the center of the intersection where the injured Marine is.
Marine: “Stop!!” They both stop at least a couple meters away. The injured Marine raises his hand, and points behind him.
Marine: “D..don’t… gone! Gone!! R…run. Run!” His chest explodes with blood. The two Marines back off in shock. My hands start shaking at what I am seeing. A sharp object which looks like a large spear protrudes out of the Marine’s body. Before I can figure out anything else, the injured Marine is pulled back into the fog.
Pvt. Fisher: “The fuck was that?!” I start to grow scared and sweat like mad.
Marine: “Jenkins, Gaines! Get back here!” The two Marines turn around and start heading back. Just when they take their first few steps, two rockets emerge from the fog and strike above them.
Marine: “Contact!!” Three more rockets pop out. One strikes a store across from me where the other half of the squad is. The other hits the sidewalk, tossing three Marines in the middle of the street. The third hits the road close to where I am. I drop behind the car closing my eyes and hugging my rifle. Next thing I hear is swift and short screeching sounds flying everywhere, followed by gunfire in a second.
Marine: “Contact! Contact!!”
Cpl. Corey: “Fire! Fire!”
PFC Taylor: “Where the hell are they?!” I scream as I hide from whatever is shooting at us.
Sgt. Lockey: “Harris! Harris, come on! Get in the fight!” Lockey lifts me up back on the trunk. Streaks of light fly everywhere emerging from the fog across the intersection. A street light several feet above explodes from the alien fire. I close my eyes and fire my M16 on full auto at the fog.
Marine: “Twenty meters! Twenty meters!!” I duck down behind the car to reload just as two more rockets fly over, missing us by mere feet.
SSgt. Nomez: “Kresten!!”
Sgt. Kresten: “Yes, Staff Sergeant?!”
SSgt. Nomez: “Take part of our squad and find an exit! Corey, keep suppressing them!”
Sgt. Kresten: “Aye, Staff Sarge!”
Cpl. Corey: “Cover fire! Cover fire!” Corey unloads his M249 SAW down the street. Eric dashes across the street to Lockey and I.
Sgt. Kresten: “Harris! Come on, buddy! Help me find an exit!”
Marine: “Hawkeye Command! This is Black Iron September Two! We are under heavy fire by an unknown enemy at cross intersection, Sullivan Street and Bleecker Street! Requesting immediate air support, over!” Eric fires his M203 grenade launcher to where the alien fire is coming.
Sgt. Lockey: “Dammit!! I can’t see shit!” Eric quickly looks around and finds a large window on a small restaurant next to us. Without thinking, Eric bolts for the window and breaks in by throwing himself.
SSgt. Nomez: “Let’s go! Let’s go! Inside the restaurant!! My team, cover fire for Black Iron!”
PFC Taylor: “Got it, Staff Sarge!”
SSgt. Nomez: “Black Iron! Fall back into the Roadhouse restaurant!” I lay my M16 on the car, and open fire at the fog.
PFC Miles: “Cover fire! Cover fire!”
Marine: “Let’s go! Let’s go!” Three Marines dash across the street to us. Suddenly, a large spear-like object pops out of the fog, skewers a Marine running behind, and yanks him back into the fog.
Cpl. Corey: “Goddammit! Let’s get the fuck outta’ here!”
SSgt. Nomez: “Get in! Get in!” The two Marines rush inside the restaurant. Corey and Taylor follow in next.
SSgt. Nomez: “Lockey! Fisher! Now!”
Cpl. Corey: “Aye Staff Sarge!” Another rocket comes out from the fog, striking the road right next to Lockey and I. Lockey jumps and collides with me as pieces of asphalt rain down on us.
Sgt. Lockey: “Aw, shit! I’m hit!” I scramble to get up, trying to figure out where the restaurant is. Streaks of bolts continue to rain on us.
SSgt. Nomez: “Inside! Inside!!” Staff Sergeant Nomez grabs me by on one of my straps and guides me to the open window. He grabs Lockey once I make it inside and carries him towards the window.
SSgt. Nomez: “Stay with me, Lockey!” I reach my hand out the window, and take Lockey while Staff Sergeant jumps inside when a rocket explodes a couple meters close to the restaurant.
SSgt. Nomez: “Marines! Fall back on me!”
Sgt. Kresten: “Aye, sir!”
Marine: “They’re coming in!” The windows shatter form the alien fire and we all duck behind tables and chairs. I quickly kneel behind a large counter with Lockey straining on his right arm.
SSgt. Nomez: “Lieutenant, this is Staff Sergeant Nomez! We’re under heavy fire on intersection Bleecker Street and Sullivan Street! Suspecting the enemy broke through Echo Company, over!”
Marine: “Bravo Company! Move out! Move out! To the kitchen!”
Marine: “Fall back!”
Sgt. Kresten: “Corey, Taylor! Lay down some covering fire!”
PFC Taylor: “Got it, Sarge!” Corey and Taylor settle their guns on a small round table and counter fire through the windows.
SSgt. Nomez: “Harris! Take Lockey out back through the kitchen!”
PFC Harris: “Got it, Staff Sarge!” I move Lockey’s arm over my shoulders.
Sgt. Lockey: “Ugh! My arm!”
PFC Harris: “Come on, Lockey! You can make it!”
Sgt. Kresten: “Harris! In here!” Eric opens the door to the kitchen where Bravo Company is. I quickly run over to him with Sergeant Lockey clinging to almost half of my body. Bottles of drinks start shattering as I run with all my strength to Eric. When I finally make it, Eric takes Lockey off my shoulders and runs in the kitchen.
SSgt. Nomez: “Corey! Taylor! I got you covered! Fall back!”
PFC Taylor: “Aye, Staff Sarge!”
Cpl. Corey: “Go! I got you covered!” Taylor gets up and zigzags around small and large tables while alien fire continues to enter the restaurant. He scrambles to climb over the counter, and falls over the other side. A bottle explodes from the alien fire, dumping the liquor on top of Taylor’s helmet and partially on his face.
SSgt. Nomez: “Taylor! Get up!”
PFC Taylor: “Ach! Tastes like vodka…” Corporal Corey unloads his SAW through the windows as he slowly walks back to Nomez.
SSgt. Nomez: “Corporal! Get your ass here!” Corey turns around and starts running to Nomez, when alien plasma strikes him in the side of his neck. Corey collides into a table before a couple more plasmas hit the rest of his body, and slides down to the floor.
SSgt. Nomez: “Corey!!” A rocket enters the restaurant, blowing almost the entire room up. Nomez ducks behind the counter as the fire and debris reaches them.
SSgt. Nomez: “Jesus! Taylor, come on!” Nomez lifts Taylor to his feet, and pushes him through the double doors into the kitchen. Nomez runs in last, closes the doors behind, and pokes his head through one of the windows.
SSgt. Nomez: “Taylor, go with the team!”
PFC Taylor: “Got it.” Taylor runs to the back of the kitchen to regroup with the rest, while Nomez stays behind and continues to peer through the window. The thick smoke slowly clears up the room, as Nomez loads a new magazine in his M4. Through the clearing smoke and debris is a large hole with small bits of fire around the edges created from the large explosion. Nomez slowly catches his breath, and squints his eyes when he notices a couple of bright red lights shining outside of the restaurant. Suddenly, a large, bulky figure lands right in front of the hole. Nomez holds his breath as the bulky figure takes a few steps inside. The alien is very large, at least two feet taller. It has a tail flailing around, as well as a few glowing cylinders on its back. The alien walks deeper into the restaurant, and stops. Nomez quickly hides, thinking the alien spotted him.
Cpl. Corey: (faint) “Ugh… ugh! Ah!” Nomez peers back, and notices the alien holding Corporal Corey in the air. Clearly, that alien is almost two feet taller, and at least twice as wide as Corey.
SSgt. Nomez: “Shit…”
Cpl. Corey: (faint) “F… fuck you. Fuck you!” The alien raises an object attached to its arm, and points it to Corey struggling to break free. Nomez can’t help but watch helplessly. The alien blows Corey’s head clean off, and drops the body on the floor. The alien suddenly turns to the doors where Nomez is. Nomez quickly kneels when he sees the bright red single eye from the alien.
SSgt. Nomez: “Shit.” Nomez holds his rifle tight in his hands, and runs off rapidly to the back door.
I run outside into an alley with the rest of our squad and Bravo team. Gunfire still rages from all sides.
Marine: “Go, go. Through here.” We run down the alley and make a left turn into a small open area, which looks like a play area for kids.
Pvt. Fisher: “Staff Sergeant approaching!” I turn around and see Staff Sergeant Nomez running towards us.
Marine: “Staff Sergeant Nomez. Glad you could make it.” I look at Nomez for a moment, and realize Corey is not with him.
PFC Harris: “Where’s Corey?” Nomez shakes his head while catching his breath.
SSgt. Nomez: (panting) “Didn’t… make it. That stupid… son of a bitch blasted his head off.”
PFC Taylor: “Who?”
SSgt. Nomez: “That… thing.”
Marine: “I’m sorry, Staff Sergeant. But right now, we have other things to worry about.”
Pvt. Fisher: “Hey, hey, hey. Has anyone seen Miles?”
Sgt. Kresten: “Private Miles?”
PFC Harris: “Wasn’t he with us when we got in the restaurant?” We all turn in different directions, and scream out for Miles’ name.
Sgt. Kresten: “Miles!”
PFC Taylor: “Miles, where are you?!” Nomez grows frustrated.
SSgt. Nomez: “I’ll go find him. Kresten, Harris. With me. Sergeant, take the rest and fall back. We’ll meet you on West Third Street.”
PFC Taylor: “We first need to strap up Lockey, sir.”
SSgt. Nomez: “Okay. Strap up Lockey, and meet us at West Third Street.”
Marine: “Aye, Staff Sergeant. Be careful.”
SSgt. Nomez: “Let’s go!” Eric hands Lockey to Taylor, and follows Staff Sergeant and I back into the alley, searching for Miles.
Private Miles bursts through a door into a grey apartment, and fires his M16 back outside while walking backwards through the hallway. His magazine empties, and Miles runs through the hallway in a stray panic, trying to open every door he sees.
PFC Miles: (panting) “Oh shit. Shit. Shit.” He reaches the last door at the end of the hallway. He tries to open the door, but it’s locked, just like the rest of the other doors.
PFC Miles: (panting) “Come on. Come on.” The lights in the building suddenly fail. Miles stops, and turns around. He raises his rifle, and turns on the tactical flashlight to search the hallway.
PFC Miles: “Shit.” He takes a few steps back, and charges with full force, breaching through the door and inside the pitch-black room. He quickly gets back up on his feet. With his rifle raised, Miles searches the room for an exit, until his radio crackles.
SSgt. Nomez: (static) “Miles. Miles… do you…?”
PFC Miles: “Shit. S… Staff Sergeant? Do you copy?” The radio goes static again.
PFC Miles: “Shit.” Miles panics. He finally finds a window and runs over to it. He smashes the window with the butt of his rifle, and climbs out to a large open alley.
PFC Miles: “Staff Sergeant. Do you copy?”
SSgt. Nomez: (static) “Miles. Miles, we’re coming for you. What’s your position?”
PFC Miles: “I… I’m out in an open alleyway… behind an apartment building… roughly four stories tall with black fire stairwells…” Suddenly, a low metallic roar startles him before he could finish. Miles trips and falls next to a garbage container, lifting his M16 up to the roofs.
PFC Miles: (panting) “Shit! St… Staff Sergeant, these things are everywhere.”
SSgt. Nomez: (static) “We’re on our way. What color is the building?”
PFC Miles: (panting) “Lightish… grey. I’m outside in the back next to a garbage container.”v
SSgt. Nomez: (static) “Okay. Stay there. We’re coming for you.” A shadow swiftly runs by next to Miles. Miles reacts and pulls the trigger, but he realizes he forgot to load in a new magazine. Still shaking, he takes a new magazine and drops it. He picks it back up and loads it in his rifle.
Staff Sergeant Nomez peers over the edge for any signs of activity in the street.
SSgt. Nomez: “Strange…”
PFC Harris: “What’s wrong?”
SSgt. Nomez: “There’s nothing. No activity. Miles. Miles, this is Nomez. Do you copy? Dammit. Signal’s blocked.”
Sgt. Kresten: “Shh. You hear that?” Nomez stops and listens. We can hear a slight metallic chirping sound coming from above.
PFC Harris: “The hell?” The sweat mixed with the cold air is making my hands uncontrollably shiver. Suddenly, we hear a couple of shots fired somewhere in the area.
Sgt. Kresten: “What’s that?”
SSgt. Nomez: “Probably Miles. We need to move fast.” Nomez peers out over the side again and searches for the grey building.
Miles fires another two shots in the air. He quickly gets up, runs behind the garbage dump and settles his rifle on top to scope the roofs.
PFC Miles: (panting) “Shit. Shit. Shit.” Through the pitch darkness, he hears a couple of taps coming from behind. Miles flinches and fires his rifle as soon as he turns around. A figure suddenly pops out from a dark area and jumps up a building as Miles continues to fire at it.
PFC Miles: “Aaagghh!!” The magazine empties in a matter of seconds, but Miles continues to pull the trigger. Completely shaken and out of breath, Miles changes his magazine in a frantic matter. He quickly raises his rifle up on the roofs where the figure had gone. After a few seconds of waiting, he starts walking back. Sweat starts to build up immensely. He fires four rounds.
PFC Miles: (panting) “I’m right here!” He switches to another roof across, then circles around in the alley. He fixes his Trijicon scope, before he hears another tapping from behind. Miles turns around and opens fire in a circle.
PFC Miles: (panting) “Come on! I’m here!!” He opens fire again in the air, and runs over beside a parked car.
SSgt. Nomez: (distant) “Miles!!” Miles points his gun at Staff Sergeant Nomez running over. Eric and I pop out a second later.
SSgt. Nomez: “Miles! Put that weapon down!” Miles slowly lowers his M16, and breathes a sigh of relief.
Sgt. Kresten: “Jesus, man. Where the hell have you been?” Miles stays silent for a while. Suddenly, his body is arched and a large blade impales through his back and out his chest, ripping part of the vest open.
Sgt. Kresten: “Miles!!”
PFC Harris: “Shit!!” I point my M16 at Miles, as he is randomly lifted into the air. Behind him, is a dark figure holding a large axe blade weapon. The figure raises Miles in the air, and throws him to the ground. All three of us are in shock, staring at the figure spinning the large axe blade and walking towards us.
MEFE: “Now…” The figure stops, revealing to be a girl with a witch-like hat, purple hair, a small black tank top, purple shorts with a large belt and black pants just above her knees. She raises her hand, and licks her large black claws.
MEFE: “Which one of you pity humans shall die first?”
Sgt. Kresten: “Fuck you, bitch!!” Eric fires his M4 at the girl on full auto. Right after Eric opens fire, Nomez and I start firing as well. The girl lunges over, and dashes right towards us. She spins her giant axe in front of her as she runs at us, ricocheting off the bullets we fire at her.
SSgt. Nomez: “Shit! Split up! Split up!” All three of us split up just when the girl raises her axe. She brings the weapon down on the ground at full force as soon as we jump out of the way, sending a shockwave throughout the alleyway. The wave sends me sliding over to a garbage container. I accidentally let go of my rifle and it slides halfway under the container. Nomez flies back first into a wall, dropping his M4 a few feet away next to him. Eric rolls into the center of the alley, gripping tightly to his M4 Grenadier.
Sgt. Kresten: “Hey, bitch! Over here!” He quickly gets back up to his knees and fires again at the girl. The girl picks up her axe and blocks the rounds just when they reach her. When Eric’s magazine empties, the girl runs over at him.
PFC Harris: “Kresten!!” I pick up my M16 out from under the garbage container, and quickly fire a round at the girl, scraping her arm just as she is about to swing her axe at Eric. Eric jumps out of the way as the girl stops and grasps her grazed arm. I get back up on my feet and start walking cautiously towards the girl while aiming at her head.
PFC Harris: “Kresten! You okay?”
Sgt. Kresten: (panting) “Yeah.” Eric gets back up and aims at the girl. I look over my shoulder and see Staff Sergeant Nomez trying to get back up.
PFC Harris: “Kresten, Go help Staff Sergeant.”
Sgt. Kresten: “Anything for the birthday boy.” Eric slowly circles the girl, and dashes to Staff Sergeant while I keep my gun aiming at her. Right now, I’m at least two meters from her. I can hear her breathing heavily. She turns her head to me. Those bright purple eyes suddenly catch my attention.
MEFE: (panting) “You… humans…” I point my rifle at her again.
PFC Harris: “What the hell are you?”
MEFE: (panting) “You’ll find out… when you die.” In a split second, the girl raises her axe, strikes down just inches to my right side. The girl lashes out her arm and strikes me to the ground before I could get out of the way. I fall on the ground and the girl takes hold of my vest and pins down my M16 with her foot.
Sgt. Kresten: “Harris!!” The girl turns to Eric grinning. With his rifle raised, Eric opens fire.
MEFE: “Shadow cloud.” The girl raises her claws and deploys a dark shield right in front of us, stopping the bullets in its path. Without thinking, I grab her arm, but she head-butts me right on my helmet. When I let go of her arm, she notices the birthmark on my neck. She moves the scarf, exposing the irregular star-shaped mark, and then smiles.
MEFE: “Looks like it’s my lucky day, boy.” Suddenly, her forehead suddenly spews out a black substance mixed with purple. She quickly jumps off of me before the rest of her body starts spitting out the substance. I turn my head over behind me and see Taylor and Fisher firing their guns at the girl.
PFC Taylor: “Fire! Fire on that thing!” The girl picks up her axe and tries to block the bullets. I rapidly crawl away from Taylor and Fisher’s line of fire, pick up my rifle and open fire at the girl. She starts slowing down her axe. With so many bullet holes all over her body, she suddenly stops and drops to the ground. I still keep on firing until my magazine runs empty.
PFC Taylor: “Harris! Kresten, you okay?!”
PFC Harris: (panting) “Yeah!”
Sgt. Kresten: “Staff Sergeant’s K-O! I need help!” My heart is pounding like a drum. I slowly get up and load a new magazine in my rifle. Fisher runs over to me.
Pvt. Fisher: “Jesus, the hell was that thing?”
PFC Harris: (panting) “Dunno. Seems like this girl really wanted us.” Fisher looks over at the girl filled with bullet holes still spewing out the black substance like a fountain.
Pvt. Fisher: “I can tell. She’s got titties, man.” Both of us walk over to Kresten and Taylor trying to lift up Staff Sergeant to his feet.
PFC Harris: “How’s Staff Sarge?” Nomez groans.
SSgt. Nomez: “I… I’m fine. Ugh… Jesus. The hell was that?”
Pvt. Fisher: “A girl with a witch hat and big tits tried to seduce Harris. We got it, though.”
Sgt. Kresten: “It didn’t look human. It took so many rounds to kill it.”
PFC Taylor: “Not even a headshot could kill it.” Staff Sergeant Nomez looks over to Private Miles’ body by the car.
SSgt. Nomez: “God dammit.” Taylor walks over to the body, and takes the dog tag buried under his vest and scarf.
Pvt. Fisher: “God…” When Taylor reaches Nomez, he hands him the dog tag.
SSgt. Nomez: (sighs) “Let’s go. We can’t keep Bravo Company waiting for us. Where’s Lockey?”
PFC Taylor: “With Bravo, sir.”
SSgt. Nomez: “Let’s go. We regroup with Bravo, and haul ass back to the evac site. God knows what these things like that will do. Hooah?”
Whole Squad: “Hooah.”
W. 3rd Street, Sullivan Street Inter.
Taking cover beside a corner market, four Marines from Bravo Company plus Sergeant Lockey all bandaged up are waiting for us. Already, it’s been almost ten minutes.
Marine: “Where the hell are they?”
Marine: “Sergeant, there’s no sign of ‘em. We have to move.”
Marine: “Hold on, Corporal. Station Washington, this is Black Iron September Two. We’re on approach via Sullivan Street. Tell fire team to hold fire, over.”
Station Command: “Understood, Black Iron.”
Marine: “Okay. Let’s go.”
Marine: “Sergeant. We got movement. Six o’clock.” All four Marines raise their rifles behind.
SSgt. Nomez: “Hold fire! Hold fire! Friendlies!”
Marine: “Lower your weapons.” The four lower their weapons as all five of us catch up to them out of breath.
Marine: “Glad you could make it, Staff Sarge.” I look at Lockey to see if he is okay, but he has a puzzled look on his face.
Sgt. Lockey: “Where’s Miles?”
Sgt. Kresten: (panting) “K-I-A.” Lockey is silent for a while. Suddenly, a rocket comes out of nowhere, and blows up several meters beside us. We all duck down and race behind an SUV in the middle of the street ahead.
Marine: “Shit! Where are they?!”
SSgt. Nomez: “Up on the roof! One o’clock high!”
LAV-25 Gunner: (static) “This is Battalion Two! We are under heavy on Laguardia Place!”
Marine: (gunfire in background) “This is Echo Five! We need immediate air support! Enemy is advancing fast on Thompson Street!” I point my rifle up to the roof, and spot two bulky figures, each with a glowing red eye.
PFC Harris: “On the roof!” I open fire at one of the aliens that is leaning over the edge firing at us.
SSgt. Nomez: “Lieutenant Cortez, this is Staff Sergeant Nomez! We’re falling back to the evac park but encountered heavy fire! Requesting air support, over!”
Lt. Cortez: (gunfire in background) “Staff Sergeant, this is Lieutenant Cortez! We have the same situation here! Get back to evac site however you can! These things are everywhere! Have you found the squad, over?!”
SSgt. Nomez: “Negative, Lieutenant! We were ambushed before we could get there! Possibly K-I-A!”
Lt. Cortez: (gunfire in background) “Copy! Just get back to Washington Square Park! Billbird Six-one should arrive in ten!”
SSgt. Nomez: “Roger that! Sergeant! Take your squad and Lockey, and head to that taxi! We’ll cover fire!”
Marine: “Got it, Staff Sarge!”
SSgt. Nomez: “Team, cover fire!”
Sgt. Kresten: “Covering fire!” The five of us poke out over the SUV and open fire at the roof where the aliens are.
SSgt. Nomez: “Go! Go!” The four Marines quickly run out, carrying Lockey across the street to a taxi crashed into a stoplight pole. I duck back behind the vehicle to load in another magazine.
PFC Harris: “Reloading!” Eric fires his M203, which blows up a small section of the roof. One of the aliens jumps back, and runs away.
Pvt. Fisher: “I got a runner!” Fisher fires his M16, chasing away the alien.
PFC Taylor: “We’re clear?!” We check the roof for a few seconds, before Nomez calls out.
SSgt. Nomez: “We’re clear! Move! Move!” We run over to the taxi across the street where Bravo Team is.
SSgt. Nomez: “Let’s go! Back to the evac site! Move!” I help out one Marine who is carrying Lockey, and we all race back to the park.
A-10 Pilot: “This is Doom Three. We are on approach to Washington Square Park, four minutes, over.”
The gunfire increases as we near the park, as well as the spinning rotor blades from CH-46 Chinooks and V-22 Ospreys. We jog alongside a fence when we finally approach the park.
Marine: “All teams, this is Black Iron September Two, be advised. Friendlies are approaching out of Sullivan Street. Watch your fire. How copy, over?”
LAV-25 Gunner: “Solid copy, Black Iron.”
Marine: “Move.” I take a deep breath, and we all dash out from the corner into the street. Before we know it, alien fire emerges all around along with gunfire.
SSgt. Nomez: “Friendlies!!” We spot a Humvee with a Marine firing an M2 machine gun out on Thompson Street get hit by an alien rocket, flipping it over upside-down.
Abrams Gunner: “Two-three! Target at eleven-thirty!”
Marine: “Take cover!” We jump past the defense line littered with foxholes and machine guns firing behind us. I found the rest of the squad straight ahead taking cover behind an M1 Abrams tank engaging at a university behind us.
Sgt. Kresten: “Lieutenant Cortez, twelve o’clock!”
Cpl. Jordes: “Hey!! Over here!” The tank fires the main cannon just before we run behind it.
SSgt. Nomez: “Lieutenant!”
Lt. Cortez: “Staff Sergeant! Glad you could make it! First Sergeant Piercen is with Corporal Stanar engaging with Echo Four on Thompson Street!”
SSgt. Nomez: “Any word on air support?!”
LCpl. Linelles: “We got A-10s enroute in one minute! Billbird Six-one will arrive in five minutes along with evac support!”
Marine: (distant) “Incoming!!” A rocket comes out from one the buildings and collides in one of the foxholes with two Marines manning a machine gun. Both bodies are ripped apart and thrown out of the pit.
A-10 Pilot: “Cold Steel December Six, this is Doom Three. Standing by. Give the go-ahead, over.”
LCpl. Linelles: “Doom Three! This is Cold Steel December Six! Cleared hot! Cleared hot! Say time till impact, over?!”
A-10 Pilot: “Copy, weapons hot for gun-run. Ten seconds, over. Get clear.”
Abrams Gunner: “Air strike on approach, ten seconds. Clear the streets. Clear the streets.” We wait behind the tank for the air strike as everyone else clears the streets. The sound of A-10 Warthogs approaches seconds later, and a row of buildings in front of us explode in shards of glass, concrete and sparks. A Warthog swoops over the park a moment later, followed by another set of explosions at one of the streets to the far left. A second Warthog swoops over.
A-10 Pilot: “This is Doom Three. Confirmed hit on target. Circling around for another round. Thirty seconds.”
SSgt. Nomez: “We got more coming!”
Marine: (gunfire in background) “Tank two is hit! Tank Two is hit! South-southeast corner of the park! More hostiles approaching!”
Lt. Cortez: “Staff Sarge! Take half of our squad and Bravo and provide support on the right side of the street!”
SSgt. Nomez: “Aye, sir! Kresten, Harris, Fisher, Taylor! On me!”
Sgt. Kresten: “Got it!”
Lt. Cortez: “We’ll provide cover fire when you move!”
A-10 Pilot: “This is Doom Three. On approach, twenty seconds. Clear the streets.”
MSgt. Romill: “Cover fire!”
SSgt. Nomez: “Move! Move!” The five of us plus Bravo Company dash out from behind the tank before it opens fire the main cannon. We run with full speed across the asphalt path over behind a small construction area layered with concrete barricades and a bulldozer. I just make behind the wheel of the bulldozer before a bolt scrapes the vehicle.
SSgt. Nomez: (panting) “Bravo, take the right side! Fisher, Taylor, take center! Harris, you and Kresten are with me here! We’re gonna hold here until evac arrives!”
A-10 Pilot: “Cold Steel December Six, this is Doom Three. On approach, ETA five seconds.” The sound of Warthogs reappears again. The street in front of us filled with bright glowing red dots explodes from high-explosive rounds from the first Warthog. The second A-10 launches a rocket at the street farthest to the left.
Osprey Pilot: “All units stationed in Washington Square Park, this is Outlaw Two-two. Inbound in thirty seconds. Prepare for evac, over.”
Marine: (gunfire in background) “This is Echo Two, sustaining heavy fire with LAVs on Laguardia Place! Requesting immediate support, over!”
LAV-25 Gunner: “This area’s crawling with these things!” I fire my M16 with short bursts through the thick smoke left by the fighter.
Sea Knight Pilot: “Approaching evac site now. Watch your fire.”
Cobra Pilot: “This is Venom Four, on approach. Gonna lay down some rounds on the streets for ya’.”
Marine: “Staff Sergeant! Evac choppers are here!” I turn around and spot the first Sea Knight approaching the park with its front lights shining. More Sea Knights, Chinooks, and Ospreys show up and land on different areas of the park.
Billbird Six-one: “Cold Steel December Six, this is Billbird Six-one. The park is a little jammed up. We’re gonna have to circle around until it’s clear, over.”
LCpl. Linelles: (gunfire in background) “Understood, Billbird! Keep us informed, over!” The sound of fast moving rotors drains out the gunfire.
SSgt. Nomez: “Take cover!” Nomez shoves me back behind the bulldozer as a bolt strikes just inches from where my face was. More bolts bounce over and around the vehicle and barricades.
Sgt. Kresten: “Cobras inbound!” A rocket comes out over our heads down at the street ahead, blowing up any remaining aliens. Seconds later, an AH-1 Cobra attack helicopter swoops down firing its Gatling gun before it rises over the buildings. Another Cobra launches several rockets at another street to the right.
Cobra Pilot: “Four-one, this is Four-four. Settling down the chaos in MacDouglas Street, over.” As the attack helicopter hovers over to the far right, continuing to engage at the aliens with its Gatling gun, a small flash catches my eyes at one of the buildings. Just close to MacDouglas Street, a bright orange figure jumps off of the roof of a law school, heading straight towards the chopper. It cuts right between the fuselage, blowing the Cobra up in flames and crashing down in the park before disappearing behind one of the buildings.
Abrams Gunner: “We have a Cobra down. I repeat, we have a Cobra down. Venom Four-four, over.”
Cobra Pilot: “Four-four is down. I repeat, Four-four is down. In the park by MacDouglas Street.”
Sgt. Kresten: “Jesus Christ! Did you see that?!”
SSgt. Nomez: “We did, Sergeant! Just keep holding until we have evac!”
Lt. Cortez: (gunfire in background) “Staff Sergeant Nomez! This is Lieutenant Cortez! Regroup with us!” I pop out over the bulldozer and open fire again, then popping back behind.
SSgt. Nomez: “Copy, Lieutenant! Kresten, get Bravo Company to fall back with us! When the Cobras make another run, we make a break for it!”
Sgt. Kresten: “Hooah!” Eric runs over to Fisher and Taylor and Bravo Company while I stay behind the bulldozer with Nomez.
SSgt. Nomez: “Harris! Keep suppressing fire!”
PFC Harris: “Aye, Staff Sarge!” I take a deep breath, rise over the bulldozer again, and aim my M16 down at the street.
Cobra Pilot: “This is Venom Two-four, preparing for another run. Ten seconds.” I spot a red dot appearing through the smoke. Carefully, I fire on semi-auto directly at floating the red dot.
SSgt. Nomez: “Here they come! Get ready!”
PFC Taylor: “Ready!” The Cobras return from behind, firing their Gatling guns at the streets.
Cobra Pilot: “This is Venom One-four. Engaging. Engaging.”
SSgt. Nomez: “Move! Now!”
Marine: “Bravo moving!” Bravo Company runs up past us and we start dashing across the asphalt path. That’s when a barrage of bolts start flying in our way. Dust and small pieces of debris fly everywhere when the bolts hit the ground.
Sgt. Kresten: “Keep moving!” One Marine in front of me gets hit in the helmet and topples over. I trip over him before I could react.
Marine: “Shit!” I get back up on my hands, seeing the Marine not moving an inch with a burn mark on his helmet.
SSgt. Nomez: “Let’s go! Let’s go!” Two Marines pick up the body by his shoulders and drag him away. Eric picks me up as well.
Sgt. Kresten: “Come on, Harris!” I take a glance at a Cobra firing a rocket at a building. Then, the same fiery figure jumps out from another building, slicing off the tail rotor of the chopper in a bright explosion.
Cobra Pilot: “Aw, shit! I’m hit! I’m hit!” The chopper spins into the edge of the law school, and topples over in the street.
Cobra Pilot: “One-four is down! I repeat, One-four is down!”
Cobra Pilot: “This is Two-four, I have visual on the hostile. Right corner rooftop of the law school.” The run seems forever, as we finally make it back to where our squad is, right behind the tank.
Abrams Gunner: “This is Two-three, we’ve got more hostiles approaching on Thompson Street.”
SSgt. Nomez: “Lieutenant! We’re dead stuck here if don’t get that evac!”
Lt. Cortez: “Linelles is working on it! Hold on!” I turn my head over to the left, looking at an LAV-25 armored vehicle firing its chain gun at another street, before it erupts in flames by a rocket.
Billbird Six-one: “Cold Steel December Six, this is Billbird Six-one. We’re coming in.”
LCpl. Linelles: “Solid copy, Six-one!”
Marine: (gunfire in background) “We’re on board! Go! Go!”
Marine: (gunfire in background) “Venom Three-four, this is Echo Two! Requesting immediate support over at Thompson Street, over!”
Cobra Pilot: “This is Three-four, solid copy, Echo Two.” A couple Chinooks lift off from the park and disappear behind the buildings. The two Cobras reappear again after three more evac choppers land in the park. One Cobra fires two missiles at the roof of the law school before lifting off through the buildings. The other Cobra fires its Gatling gun down at the street to the left.
Billbird Six-one: “Cold Steel December Six, this is Billbird Six-one. We’re coming in. Better speed it up, we’re seeing a lot o’ hostiles approaching the evac park.”
Hawkeye: “All units stationed in Washington Square Park, this is Hawkeye Command. Recommend you all evacuate immediately. Large numbers of hostiles are approaching at high speed. Get out of there, now.”
Abrams Gunner: “Two-two is hit! Repeat, Two-two is hit and burning up!”
Marine: (gunfire in background) “Jesus Christ! How many of these things are there?!”
Lt. Cortez: “Romill, get our squad outta’ here! Bravo, your with us!”
MSgt. Romill: “Let’s go! On me!” We all run away from the tank just as it is about to fire its main cannon. We pass other Chinooks, Ospreys and Blackhawks while bolts and bullets fly everywhere over our heads.
Marine: “Let’s go! Let’s go!”
Chinook Pilot: “This is Two-five. I’m hit. I’m hit. Rear stabilizer.”
Marine: (gunfire in background) “MacDouglas Street is being breached! Fall back! Fall back!!”
LCpl. Linelles: (gunfire in background) “Billbird Six-one, this is Cold Steel December Six! Where are you?!”
Billbird Six-one: “Cold Steel, this is Billbird. We’re landing now.” I spot the Osprey landing in the center of the park with a Blackhawk following behind.
LCpl. Linelles: “We see you, Billbird!” We stop behind the large fountain littered with tents and Humvees as the Osprey touches down several meters behind with the ramp open.
Crew Chief: “Let’s go!” Bravo Company run inside first, carrying their wounded inside.
Abrams Gunner: “They’re breaching through!” A barrage of rockets suddenly shoots out from one of the buildings. Almost everything to the right erupts in flames. A rocket hits a Blackhawk, and crash lands back to the ground.
Lt. Cortez: “Marines! Inside the Osprey!” I spot a glowing red dot peering through the smoke. I fire my M16 while taking a few steps backwards, before running in the Osprey.
Billbird Six-one: “Cold Steel, get your ass on board! Hostiles are breaching through!”
Cobra Pilot: “This is Venom Two-four. We’re gonna make a final run before returning to refuel and rearm. Coming down in five seconds from the south, over.”
Marine: (gunfire in background) “We’re on board! Go!”
Osprey Pilot: “This is Kriss Two-one. Dusting off.” I haul Eric inside as the rest of us pile inside.
Crew Chief: “We’re all on board! Dust off, now!” I look outside, watching the streets blow up from the incoming Cobras as we are about to lift off.
Cobra Pilot: “Three-four. Contact, to your nine.”
Cobra Pilot: “Copy Two… Shit!” The fiery figure returns, cutting straight through the center of one of the Cobras.
Cobra Pilot: “Dammit! Two-three is hit. Two-three is hit and down.” The Osprey sways in all directions as I try to grasp on to something solid.
Marine: (gunfire in background) “This is Foxtrot Two! We’re falling back through Fifth Avenue with Tank Colony Three!” The crew chief takes hold of an M2 .50 caliber machine gun and opens fire as the Osprey rises over the park.
Billbird Six-one: “Hang on! This is gonna get bumpy!”
Sea Knight Pilot: “We’re hit! We’re hit! Brace your asses! We’re going for a ride!” The V-22 suddenly jerks upward, and we fly out of the park, giving all of us a glance of the choppers leaving as well.
Chinook Pilot: “This is Two-six! We’re clear of the park!”
Billbird Six-one: “Hawkeye Command, this is Billbird Six-one. Washington Square Park has been fully evacuated, over.”
Hawkeye: “Solid copy, Six-one. Stand by.” I breathe a sigh of relief. I wipe off the cold sweat off my forehead before Eric rubs my helmet.
Sgt. Kresten: “Don’t worry, buddy. We made it.”
F/A-18 Pilot: “Washington Evacuation Team, this is Redbull Two-two. You’ve got some enemy drones heading straight towards you from the south. Turn north northeast for four miles, how copy, over?”
Chinook Pilot: “Copy that, Redbull. Turning north northeast for four miles.”
Pvt. Fisher: “What the hell do we do now?!”
MSgt. Romill: “Just keep your head in it, Fisher!”
Pvt. Fisher: “So we’re just gonna stay here until those things knock us out?!”
Chinook Pilot: “I’m hit! I’m hit! Going down!” We hear an explosion outside the ramp. When I look outside, I spot a Chinook close by spinning wildly down on fire.
Osprey Pilot: “Two-four is down. I repeat, Two-four is down. Twelfth Street, over.”
Blackhawk Pilot: “We have enemy fighters approaching.” Out in the open, a bunch of dark shadows approach the convoy.
Crew Chief: “Hold on!” In a split second, they launch a barrage of rockets.
Billbird Six-one: “Evasive maneuvers! Go, go!”
Sea Knight Pilot: “I’m hit! Mayday, mayday! This is Eagle Two-five! I’m hit in the rear rotor and going down in…!” (static)
Osprey Pilot: “Engine two is down! Engine two is down!” Sea Knights and Ospreys start burning before they descend to the ground. Already, four choppers go down in flames. Then another three blow up. The Osprey jolts violently before a bright orange glow appears through the windows behind me.
Billbird Six-one: “We’re hit! We’re hit! Engine one is on fire!” I can feel the Osprey slowly leaning to the left as I grasp on to the seats.
Billbird Six-one: “We’re going down! I got no control on Engine one!” We slowly descend below the buildings into a large roadway before the Osprey starts to gain control.
FSgt. Piercen: “Is everyone okay?!”
Billbird Six-one: “I’ve control on the pedals.” We continue to spin in circles, but slowly.
Billbird Six-one: “Hawkeye, this is Billbird Six-one. We took heavy fire from enemy aircraft and suffered damage, over.” I look outside to scan anything unusual. I don’t see anything.
Marine: “We’re sitting ducks here! Sooner or later, something’s gonna come over and knock us…!” Without warning, the engine on fire blows up, and we plummet down to the ground.
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