“Mr. Daley, put the focal point on that main building.”
“General, I just can’t obey that order. I’m sorry. Do you realize how many people that will kill?”
“Mr. Daley, you’re relieved and confined to quarters until further notice.”
He slowly left the control room and made his way to his quarters. The general sat down at the vacant console.
“Sir, do you want me to take it?”
“No, Mr. Cooper. This is something I must do. I was wrong to give him that order. I shouldn’t have put him in that position. Mr. James, full power, please”
“Full power, yes sir.”
“Are the coordinates still valid?”
“Sir, coordinates locked and on target. We are at full power.”
General Charles Robbins flipped up the hood covering a switch. He pushed the switch up to the on position. Six red lights started shinning. When they turned green, he pushed the red button. The general didn’t need to watch the monitor to know what happened. He just lowered his head in shame. Everyone else was watching it though. A camera located on top of Stone Mountain was pointed south, slightly west. Details were fuzzy. They were watching a point some thirty five miles away. A closer view was not wise. The monitor revealed a huge mushroom cloud boiling up from the location where Flippen, Ga. once stood. A small community south of Atlanta which, unfortunately, had a reptile base in the center of town. A railroad passed by at the edge of town. It was destroyed as well as the reptile base next to it. That track would no longer be used to haul people to a slaughter house.
The explosion looked like a nuke had been detonated, but no radiation accompanied this destructive force. It was pure energy, which was released at a tight focal point. The antennae arrays and capacitor banks were located in Alaska and Australia. The battle to take over those facilities had cost the general one hundred sixty two men. He was going to make sure their sacrifice wasn’t wasted. Those facilities was the only ones left, out of twelve, which could collect enough power and channel it to a location. They had no other weapons powerful enough to be effective against those reptile bases. The Reptilians didn’t destroy these facilities like the others. They wanted to learn more about this technology. That would be their undoing. The general knew they must be taken at all cost. To fail meant death for everyone on the planet. He kept sending men until both facilities was theirs. The number of causalities didn’t matter. It was do or die.
“Send a team in to mop up any stragglers and search for survivors.”
General Robbins didn’t think there would be any of the creatures left alive, but he didn’t want to take any chances. A few places around the area provided protection. Some people may have sought the safety of those basements and survived the blast.
“Yes sir. A four man team is prepped and standing by. If they find any survivors, where do you want them processed?”
“Ruby Falls can handle them now.”
It was the first time they used full power from the array. Some type of energy shields were now protecting an alien base and required all the power their Tesla howitzer could deliver. That enemy base was no more, but it cost fifty six hundred innocent people their lives.
“Mr. Cooper, take over. I’m going downstairs.”
The general had to get away from the group of men in the control center. He didn’t want them to see their general cry. Some may think it’s easy to kill, until they are forced to do so. This would be something that will haunt him for the rest of his life. He lost his lunch. The war against these creatures had been ongoing for over ten years. Far to many of his militia had lost their lives defending planet Earth. This fact forced General Robbins to take some drastic actions. He simply couldn’t afford to sacrifice men and women in any more all out desperate battles just to destroy one enemy base. A different battle plan had been developed.
“Destroy the enemy at all costs with the least amount of military casualties.”
What the plan didn’t state was many innocent people would die. Even though the people in Flippen had been warned to expect the destruction of the reptile base, they were much to afraid and brainwashed to act.
General Robbins took his time going to the infirmary. He stopped by a restroom to compose himself before exposing his weary eyes to the corpse. It would be the first one viewed up close.
The first thing he noticed was a God awful stench.
“How do you put up with that smell?”
Dr. Anthony Gross went to a cabinet to retrieve a small jar. He put a dab of camphor under each nostril of the general.
“That should help.”
“What have you learned from this thing?”
“Come on doc. I just killed a bunch of people; don’t make me add one more to the list.”
Tony knew he didn’t mean it, but decided now wasn’t the time to tell jokes.
“Come here and look at this.”
He pointed at his microscope.
“OK. What am I looking at. There’s nothing moving.”
“My point exactly. This fellow has a dormant virus. I believe it’s inherited. I managed to activate it. It killed everything on that disk in a matter of minutes.”
“Can that be done on a large scale?”
“Well, that’s what I’m working on. I don’t seem to be able to recreate the process. I’ll find the answer, but it’s going to take some time.”
￼The general walked back over to the reptile. It was opened up and many of the internal organs were removed.
“It’s bigger than a human.”
“Yes, but their size comes at a cost. Speed and agility suffer because of their size. They are slow and clumsy.”
It has two legs, but the upper joint was turned different than a human. The upper joint bent backward and another joint lower down bent forward. Three fingers and opposing thumb were at the end of stout arms. The face made the general’s skin crawl. The eyes were deep sat and they appeared to have two eyelids. A dark green color with gray areas gave them a creepy appearance. Fangs sticking out of its mouth told their own story. That was about as much as the general could take. He turned away from it.
“How many more do we have that’s still alive?”
“Chuck, we have three left. Don’t worry. I assure you; they will not leave here alive. Those fellows are going to teach me many things. Hopefully, one will be how to fight them, without killing everyone on the planet.”
Up until now, the reptiles removed their dead. Humans were so beaten down , they didn’t think about capturing a corpse and performing autopsies. With this new weapon, it seemed the tide was turning though. Four stragglers were recently captured and they were the ones the good doctor was working on.
“Well, I’ll let you get back to work. Keep me informed.”
“You’ll be the first to know.”
The general stopped by the restroom again. He just had to wipe that crap from under his nose.
General Charles Robbins entered the control center forty one more times since Flippen was destroyed. It was always the same drill. He entered and sat down at the vacant console. His arms were positioned on the rests, left hand on the joy stick. He would enter the coordinates and place the cross hairs on the target. The general would then lock it in to the fire control computer. About that time Charles Jr. entered the center, late as usual.
“Mr. Cooper, what’s the target today?”
“It’s a base in central Oklahoma. They have been building up supplies and storing them at that base. We can hurt them if we can take it out.”
“What are we waiting on?”
James Cooper pointed at the senior Robbins.
“Dad, let’s go. What you waiting on? Dad….. Dad! What’s wrong?” The general was just sitting there staring at the monitor and not moving.
Jr. pulled his father’s hands loose from the console, then swiveled the seat around so he could look him in the eyes. They were open, but it was an empty, cold stare. Charles Robbins senior had given all he had to give in the defense of planet Earth. It was time for someone else to man the hot seat. The leaders of this group needed men like Charles senior. They needed them so badly, it was common to use up a man. Take everything he had to give, then demand more.
￼“I’ll take him downstairs. Take over for me.”
Mr. Cooper stood Charles senior up and escorted him out the door.
Their was still this little matter of destroying a reptile base.
“Are the coordinates still valid?”
“We’ve moved four thousand feet.”
Jr flipped up the hood and pushed the switch up to the on position.
“I only have five arrays with green lights.”
“Yes sir, we think it’s a hardware problem. There’s a team looking into it now.”
“Is there enough power to do the job?”
“Yes sir, just barely, but we should re-lock. With that section of array out, we need to be extremely accurate with the shot.”
“Very well. go ahead and put the release point on that building.”
He moved his joystick until the cross-hairs were on the main structure of the alien base. A touch of a control locked it into the computer. That would be where multiple scalar waves intersected each other.
“Sir we have a positive lock. Full power is available on five sections of the array.”
Jr pushed the red button.
A reptile base near Harmon Airport, OK. disappeared. It was actually across the river from the airport, but the blast didn’t spare that airport or several farm houses near by. It wasn’t much of an airport though. No planes had landed or taken off in years. It probably wasn’t even manned.
After Mr. Cooper returned to the control center, he assumed command.
“How is he?”
“Doc says that it’s a form of shock. His mind just shut down.”
“I fired the howitzer. Was there a city near-by? I wonder how many casualties there were?”
“It’s mostly open farm land, except for the airport. Casualties should be very lite.”
He was referring to human casualties.
“Why don’t you go see your father? I can handle things here.”
Jr could have saved himself the grief. His father was laying on a bed staring at the ceiling. He didn’t turn his head or acknowledge Jr’s presence.
“Will he ever recover?”
“Eventually. Don’t ask how long because I don’t have a clue. He could return to normal in the next five minutes or it could take years. You just can’t take a good man who has a kind heart and a conscious, then order him to kill innocent people. I’m surprised he didn’t collapse sooner.”
“Tony, if the war was over tomorrow, what chance do all those innocent people have for a normal life?”
￼“None, but that’s not the point.”
“No. That’s exactly the point. To much poison for much to long prevents them from ever recovering. We may be doing them a favor by ending it quick and painless.”
“Why don’t you ask him if he was doing them a favor.” He pointed a thumb at Charles senior.
“Well, we got those creatures back on their heels, so I’m not going to let up now. I know they are coming with reinforcements, so we must destroy as much of their network as possible before they arrive.”
“I know. It’s just hard to see a man like your father laying there like that.”
Jr stopped off to get a late lunch before returning to the control center. He didn’t have much of an appetite, but his stomach was complaining.
“Jr, the counsel wants to meet with you in the morning, 08:00.”
“What the hell do they want?”
“You! Jr, I’m a damn fine first officer, but I’m not Charles. There’s no way I’ll sit in that seat without being under direct orders to do so. I’ll follow any order given me, but I won’t take the lead.”
“Well, I guess the seat will be mine for a long as I can push the red button, huh.”
“That’s about the size of it.”
Jr didn’t have any qualms about using the howitzer. His concern was about facing the very people that caused his father to collapse. He didn’t cherish the thought of dealing with them.
“Mr. Robbins, we have summoned you here today for a very urgent request.”
“Cut the crap and make your point. I’m in no mood for politics”
“This counsel wants you to take your fathers place. You are intelligent and knowledgeable. We feel you are the correct choice for the position.”
“Why don’t you give it to my brothers, Harold or Sam. They know the score as well as I do?”
“Sam is on a mission and may not return. Harold is much to young for this responsibility. We need you because you are here now and from what we’ve heard, your services will be needed very soon.”
Jr didn’t need to think about it. He knew they were correct. Within another week, someone would need to make some hard decisions.
“OK. I’ll do the job, but don’t think I like it. I do it because it’s necessary. When this war is over, I will step down. You can pick on my younger brother then, but leave me alone.”
Jr had no intention of letting them do to him what they did to his father.
“Understood. Thank you. Mr. Robbins don’t ever think we like driving men and taking all they have to give. Your father was a fine man. He will be missed.”
“You act as if he’s dead. He’s not dead and you will respect that.”
“Yes, of course. I didn’t mean any disrespect. Your father will be well cared for.”
￼Jr pushed that red button seven more times before reinforcements arrived.
“Sir, I have three crafts approaching. They were using the moon to shield their approach.”
“How long before they arrive?”
“About four hours. They are pushing at three gees, plus. Still gaining velocity. I can’t give a more accurate ETA”
“How long do you need to track them before the computer can lock on?”
“Sir, we need at least an hour to establish a track and be able to lock on. We should be ready to fire when they perform their skew flop. They will cut power for a few minutes. Their speed will be stable for those minutes. That will increase our accuracy.”
Mr. Daley was restored to duty by Jr. He knew more about the tracking software than anyone else, which made him indispensable. Jr didn’t hold it against the man for disobeying an order. After all, following the same order destroyed his father.
“Well, get to it.”
Jr patted him on the back.
Three hours will tell the tale. They either whip them or be eaten as one of the reptiles’ meals. It was time to try out their new tracking software. Jr didn’t expect them to come in so hot though. He suspected they would orbit the planet to help slow their ships. If they could hit a moving object in space, game over, and so would be the war. It would quickly turn into a mop-up campaign if no reinforcements were able to land and new supplies delivered. It was an old strategy. Simply put; deny the enemy the ability to make war.
“Sir, we have a positive lock. I’m turning fire control over to the computer.”
“Very well Mr. Daley; Proceed.”
Accuracy was critical. Even a fraction of a second could make the difference between hitting a spacecraft or missing it. Jr watched his console intently. One light turned red. A few seconds later another light turned red, then a third.
“Sir, radar confirms all spacecrafts appear to have been destroyed.”
He said that in such a calm voice, it took Jr several seconds for the statement to register, then pandemonium set in. Everyone was shouting, shaking hands, and patting each other on their backs. It was time to rejoice; the first time in many years.
The population of Earth had been decimated. Earth itself was almost uninhabitable, but once again, it belongs to the human race and not some reptile race. While a mop-up campaign was in progress, the leaders of the human race were planning on how to survive. They would need to devise a plan which includes people from other planets or other times in order to maintain a strong and pure genetic code. Many more people would be needed for the human race to survive. The five thousand healthy survivors of Earth wasn’t enough diversity to maintain a strong and pure DNA. The local population had suffered far to much poison to have healthy babies. Even a few of this group had also been exposed. They ￼would not be allowed to help increase the population either. The road ahead would not be an easy one. The members of this group must adjust to new conditions or perish. Old taboos must be abolished and new rules put in place. A new home must also be found! They had no choice. There was no going back.