The Great Metcalf Gap Turkey Shoot, a Martian Front Battlereport.
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Our story so far:
The Southern Front has gone to hot war. The Martians have lost the battle for Fort Worth, and with that, the plans to take Dallas. The Martian commander orders his successful forces from the Tyler to retreat and protect the hive.
General Funston is not going to give the Martian time to regroup. The Texas 1st and 4th Armored Brigades are in immediate pursuit, while the 2nd Armored, currently defending Dallas, is ordered to pursue as well. The 3rd Brigade is having it's material losses made good by recent shipments from the east before following up. General McCook, the hero of Fort Worth, was given the task of the pursuit.
General McCook surveyed the hive walls. His orders are clear, he was to assault the hive as soon as 2nd Brigade arrives. The Comanche scouts report that all ways into the hive are beset with boxes that set off heat rays. But, they have not seen a single Martian. However, emanating smoke from the hive said that someone is home. "Either that, or they have elected a new War Leader", he thought.
He had never seen a hive before, but it looked just they way they were reported elsewhere. Steep and soft. Climbable by the steam tanks, but just barely. If the defensive traps are strong enough to penetrate the tank armor, then tomorrow was going to be a bad day. If he had the artillery, and the time, he would try to level the berm before the assault. But General Funston wasn't willing to give the Martian time to prepare.
"And I can't say he's wrong there." thought McCook.
He handed his binoculars to Huupi-Pahati, the Comanche put the glasses to his eyes and stared for a long time. He handed the glasses back to the General.
"Huupi-Pahati, what do you think?"
"A lot of green coats are going to die tomorrow."
"There are no other ways in?"
"No, I have lost too many men trying to get closer. We have learned not to touch strange objects on the ground."
The General gave the Comanche a respectful nod. He turned to his Brigade commanders. "All right, we are going to do this by the numbers. First Brigade on the left, followed by second, third with the fourth on the far right. The area is full of death traps, so leading with the infantry is out. Mk II's in front to act as scouts, Mk III's too provide overwatch until they are at range, then follow up. Infantry will follow up, hopefully the tanks will have run over enough of these heat ray boxes to break up the patterns."
"How come the command tanks are painted white?"
"That was an oversight at the factory, and we didn't bring any olive drab to paint them. But in the Texas sun, we may keep them that way to stay cooler."
"No more questions? Very well, inform your men, we attack at 0500, Dismissed."
McCook read a message handed to him. His eyes widened, he looked up, then shouted to the retreating commanders, "Gentlemen, come back, there has been a change in plans.
3 days earlier:
"We have a message from the hive 1, आपका भविष्य!" The technician looked at the foil and then summarized, "We have followed your plight, and due to the strategic nature of your location, we will send forces to repel the human invaders."
Hive 1? आपका भविष्य! hadn't heard anything from them in cycles. Their main function is research, and he didn't know they had any mobile forces to deploy. It would be good to see any help coming, but it was embarrassing, It was Hive 4's mission to protect Hive 1, not the other way around. आपका भविष्य shuttered. There will be consequences.