For almost sixty years the Dark have been restricted to their system and we thought, their planet. Until they broke free and attacked the Sinclair empire and captured six systems. They had seven very large fleets, one to hold each system and one to protect theirs. Each captured system had at least ten thousand enemy soldiers land on the inhabited planets.
I was in the Davidson Military academy when the alarms went off. The few warships in the system went out but it was more than a full fleet they faced. I was sixteen and joined the others at the school armory. I drew out the Swift that had been my last birthday present and an ancient sniper rifle I loved to use.
We moved a couple of hours later while the planet prepared. That was when what we thought was rogue worlders made a run and fired several kinetic missiles. One took out the planet militia command center and another destroyed my family's manor on the ducal estate. The plans to send me home vanished as in moments I became the ruling noble for the system.
I ordered the people to evacuate out of the cities first. I met the surviving barons in a valley that extended between two mountain ranges for over ten thousand kilometer. We met in a smaller valley off it called the Tang. By the time they arrived the Dark were landing on every continent and fighters and large transports were sent out.
I was getting the barons status when a flight of Dark fighters went over. Of course that had alarms ringing and everyone racing for cover. I grabbed my sniper rifle and raced to one of the cliffs and started to climb. There were four fighters and they returned and streaked over the area where the flyers were parked.
I swung up onto a ledge and yanked the sniper rifle off. I shoved the power setting to max the acceleration. I tried to catch my breath and relax as I adjust the long sixteen millimeter rifle. The fighters were headed back but this time they were heading straight in on an attack run. I tracked one as it settled into its path and squeezed.
The large round vanished out of the barrel at close to one hundred thousand meters per second. It seemed like I fired and the round ripped through the fighter at the same time. It exploded as I shifted and tracked the next fighter while it yanked up and turned. I fired straight through it from back to front and it exploded like the first.
The other two fighters were kicking out chaff and flares and decoys but that would not work and I shot a third before the last was gone over a mountain. I knew they would be back and waited as I murmured to get other snipers into place. I also got the men that had joined me under cover and ready to attack on the valley floor.
Fifteen minutes and fighters screamed up the Tang. I shot one and six other snipers shot four others before they were gone. I was already watching behind them as a second wing of fighters came in low and fast. Of course low was not going to help them and six died before they fired the first strike missile.
It hit one of the flyers and exploded and I was aiming at another fighter when I saw the flight of assault transports, "take out the transports!"
The vacuum from my first round as it tore through the transport sucked everything living out the tiny exit hole. The transport dropped and I shot four more before I switched to a pair of fighters. As they began to turn away I shouldered the rifle, "leave everything and go to our secondary!"
I reached the bottom of the cliff and ran to the flyers, "barons get back to your people. Get your militia armed and ready!"
The first vehicle I yanked the door open on had a large penetrator missile head going from the rear to the passenger console. I hesitated before I grinned and got in. I started the flyer and lifted and accelerated towards the starport as others sped away. I stayed low but held the speed as I streaked just above the trees.
Behind me a dozen kinetic strikes began to hit the Tang. Finally I flashed over the outer edge of the city and began a dizzy dance down streets filled with soldiers. I glanced at the huge bomb next to me as I screamed down a street with sky buildings on each side. I watched ahead as I finally came out and closed with the spaceport.
I rolled and turned towards a battleship and pointed the flyer towards it. I hit the auto pilot, armed the warhead and hit the emergency ejection. The seat was wrapped in a grav shield before it exploded out the side of the flyer. I dropped towards the ground as the flyer continued with soldiers firing at it.
It slammed into the side of the ship and exploded but that was just the flyer. The first stage of the warhead exploded and sent the core ripping deeper into the ship. When the main charge went off the ship seemed to scream and then shatter as it pulled in on itself until there was only a huge compressed ball.
I landed on the ground as the enemy was still trying to recover. I released the seat harness and pulled my Swift as I started running. I shot two half breed soldiers as drones fired and missed. Both went down and the drones froze as I ran through a door and into a building. Several more enemy soldiers were inside as I continued to run and shoot.
They scrambled for cover as three went down and then I was running down a long hall. I turned a corner and shot a soldier as I ran past him. The way was clear as I kept running until I reached the side door out. I hit it and shoved it open and turned left as I continued to run. At the corner I ran down into the tram station with the enemy firing at me and following.
I ran to the service door and ignored the track as I quickly entered my family code. I slipped in and closed the door before running through the storage and lockers. In a back corner I saw the panel marked City Engineers Only. I opened it and slipped into the passage before I closed it behind me.
I went down the spiral stairs to another platform and ran to the control panel. I looked at the display map and entered the address for the city college. I turned to the tube as a section opened and a capsule slid out of the far wall and was lowered into the tube. I ran to the capsule as a door opened and slid into the front seat and hit the close button.
Next was the destination and then the capsule streaked away and into the dark tube. I slowly relaxed while I thought of what to do. The college had just been a long way from the port but the more I thought the more I liked the destination. It also gave me the way I was going to keep in touch with the barons and everyone else.
A month before this started my father had told me of a student here exploiting a back door in the comm sats. When the capsule stopped and opened I got out and moved to the control panel. I sent the capsule into storage before I left and went up to the tram station. First I had to check it before I slipped out and climbed up to the ground above.
I walked into the college and headed to the tech labs. In a large comm and comp lab I began setting things up using their equipment. I sent a data packet out to all barons and the few men that were in charge of the men following me. I set up over a dozen comm holos and accessed the comm sats using the back door.
Slowly one after another the barons and my men came on. I greeted each when they entered and finally let them know I had destroyed a battleship. I used the comm holos to create and organize my people before I relaxed. I went to the school dining hall and the huge stasis rooms. I ate and then came back to the lab to nap.
I woke with an idea and moved to one of the comps. It was basically a set of viruses for the drones and comps or control systems. The problem was the means to upload it to them. I was looking around when my eyes fell on a comp charger. That gave me the idea and I grinned as I realized the drones had to charge everyday just like comms or comps.
I went back to work on the virus and when I was done I went to find a shower. I returned feeling refreshed and left the college. First I had to find a small patrol of half breeds. I found five in one group that were looting from a store. I took a breath and stepped in and lifted my Swift and aimed.
I fired and shifted and fired and went left to right and shot each of them in the head before they could react. I stripped them and then put one of the uniforms on and slipped my Swift into my shirt. I glanced around at all the jewelry and finally loaded everything into one pack in case someone wanted to check it.
I left and headed back into the city and tried to avoid the major patrols moving through the streets. It was a long day before I saw their command center and walked right in as if I were one of them. It was busy with soldiers everywhere. I walked to a large charging station and slipped a data stick with a power plug into an empty slot.
I waited and counted to myself before I pulled it out and moved to another station. I moved around the first floor inserting the virus into every charger and large comp. After I had finished the last one I glanced up and then moved to the emergency electrical and comp panel. I slipped the power plug into the test slot and waited.
When I pulled it out I headed towards the emergency stairs. I checked each floor as I went up. Halfway up I found they were using the apartments to live in. Several floors above that I almost walked right into one of the half breed officers. He was pulling a slave girl and snarled as he shoved me, "you are not authorized to be..."
I had stepped back with the shove and glanced around before I pulled the Swift. His eyes went wide as he looked at me and fanatically grabbed at the pistol he wore. The Swift caught on the shirt and I yanked to free it. That was when the slave saved my life, she suddenly grabbed the officer's hand that was pulling the pistol.
The Swift tore the shirt as I pulled it out and the officer tried to pull the hand and weapon away from the girl. I shot him in the head and looked at the girl as he fell. I looked around and knelt and grabbed him and pulled him towards a maintenance closet. The slave followed and once in the closet I stripped the officer and grinned, "I am George."
She smiled weakly, "I am Nightstar master."
I blinked before I smiled as I finished pulling the uniform off the dead man. I stood and reached for her and quickly stripped her. I looked at her amazing body and then shook myself and began dressing her in the uniform. I was careful when I removed her collar and tossed it into a corner. I adjusted the weapon belt to fit her waist before I nodded, "follow and stay with me."
She nodded and I checked before catching her hand and pulling her out. I finished checking the floor before going up to the next. The last floor was actually two, each of the dozen penthouse apartments had two floors. I had started to shorten Nightstar's name to just Star and she whispered that this was the clan leader's floor.
I glanced out into the huge entranceway and saw several dozen drones. I took a breath and stepped out and walked straight to the charging station as the drones moved towards me. I slipped the data stick into a slot, "I am doing charging station maintenance."
The drones watched until I was done and turned to leave. I did not even look at any of the doors. Once I was back in the stairway I grinned and led Star down to the next floor. I pulled her out and to a large apartment and broke the lock to enter. We went through and out onto the balcony where I began to look up and examine the wall.
I glanced at Star, "can you climb?"
She nodded and I shifted the pack before I reached up for a large gap between the artificial building stones. For me it was easy to reach the lower balcony for one of the penthouses. I climbed over and then turned and bent and reached down. I caught one of Star's hands and pulled and lifted and helped her over the balcony rail.
I held her against me and rubbed her back, "we will go out the door."
She nodded and I leaned back, "wait for me to check inside?"
When she nodded again and I moved to the door and glanced in. I broke the lock and opened the door and began to search the bedroom. I pulled her in and then slipped into the hall with the Swift in my hand. All the bedrooms were empty but I found a Dark commander upstairs in a study at a console someone had set up.
I waited and watched until all the screens were no longer showing someone and shot him. I went to the console and began to search it before I grinned and transferred my virus and did a system wide update. I knelt and stripped the Dark of his weapons and returned to Star. I used a pillowcase to put the weapons in before I pulled her out.