• Published 13th Feb 2013
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The Gathering Strom Part III: Cyclone - WiskeyMikeOne



The highly anticipated third part of The Oncoming Storm sires of fan fiction created by WiskeyMikeOne

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Chapter Ten: The storm approaches

Chapter Ten
The storm approaches

Five months later: I was lying down on my bed on the Aircraft carrier Dusk Mist. Tune Up gave me a letter when I was just boarding the ship two days ago in the Manechester harbour. Inside the letter were a heart full scented note and a few raunchy pictures of herself in her overalls inside the hanger. I gazed at them from time to time to take my mind off of things.

The waves that hit the ship caused a genital rocking motion, if I wasn't about to invade a country I could have quite happily fallen asleep but I think the sound of the naval bombardment would have kept me awake. There was a knock at my door and a sailor walked in.

“Sir, it’s time.”

“Once more into the breach.” I scoffed and sat up.

“Thank you sailor that will be all.” He saluted and closed the door. My flight suit that was hanging behind the door sawed.

As I started to get change into my suit, I kept having deja Vu moments. The events leading up to the invasion of Le Mare was almost identical to what I was now experiencing.

When I opened the steel door that lead out to the fight deck I was hit with spray from the sea. A storm was just on the horizon to the south east, any closer and we risked losing air support. Jets flew by at top speed and were heading to Russhire, there was also several strike operations being carried out by some squadrons of the NLRAF. I along with 3rd, 7th and 10th fighter squadrons were to provide air support to the landing force. We had a huge influx of volunteers in the past few months and our numbers grew.

My jet was first in line to take off but it wasn't Night Fury. Unfortunately Tune Up couldn't modify her for carrier base take-off and landings so I had to make do with an F/A-18E Super Hornet in black, light blue and dark blue. When I was all strapped in and the ground crew had cleared me for take-off, I was contacted viva the radio.

“Night Fury this is Baseplate come in over.”

“This is Night Fury over.”

“We have somepony here who would like to talk to you sir.”

“Good luck Whirlwind, I have faith in you all.”

“Thank you, Nocturnal.” That was Luna’s codename for this operation.

“Baseplate here, we have a weather report for you, and it’s not good.”

“How bad is it?” I asked as I was going through the system checks.

“Very. The storm is approaching you fast from the south east and will be on top of you within the hour.”

“Can we proceed?” I asked as the canopy closed.

“You have a small window of opportunity, any time after that then then you risk being caught in the storm. It’s your choice sir over.”

I looked at the storm, I could see the flashes of lighting and the roar flowed soon afterwards. I looked up to the command deck and saw Bon Voyage at the window looking down at me. She nodded.

“Baseplate put me through to Colonel Zhukov.”

“Patching you thought now sir.”

“This is Zhukov.”

“Colonel can you and your men handle the sea conditions?”

“We have come too far to turn back now sir, I`ll swim back to mother Russhire if I have too.”

“Understood Colonel. Baseplate, it’s now or never, give the order.”

“Roger that sir. All call signs this is baseplate, proceed with operation Forward unto Dusk.”

I raised my hoof to signal the ground crew that I was ready to take off; I braced for the sudden acceleration of the jet as the catapult launch me and the jet into the air.

Once I was clear of the ramp I banked to get a better view of the storm, I didn't look good. Lightning was striking the waves and the rain fall was so think it looked like a wall rather than rain coming towards us.

“Night Furry this is Rainbow 6 I’m leveling off on you starboard side over.”

“Roger Rainbow 6.”

Dashie pull up next to me and gave me a wave, I responded with a nod. We had to stay together for a while and wait for the other jets to take off and for the assault boats to form up.

“Night Fury this is Baseplate. Contact. Eight Miles. There is a flight of 25 bandits coming from your northwest of your position. Turn to heading 3-1-0 over.”

“Night Fury copy. Heading 3-1-0 angles 25. Rainbow 6 you’re with me, we've got to keep those bandits away from the assault force.”

“Roger that Night Fury. King squadron form up on me the rest of you stay here and proceed with the mission as planned.”

“Wilco ma’am.”

King squadron formed up on me and Dashie just before we broke through the cloud layer, above the clouds there was no hint of bad weather, it looked like a clear day.

“Whirlwind radar contacts closing fast!”

“Got that. Tally six on my screen. I've got the two on the left; you get the two on the right Dashie?”

“Of course I do.”

Dashie boasting was cut short by the sound of machine bolt fire and the jets passing us.

“Buck!” she shouted down the radio.

“You were saying?” I performed a Split S manoeuvre and found myself on the tail of an enemy jet.

“Looks like the first kill goes to me.”

Suddenly the enemy jet reduced his speed and I over shot he was now on my tail.

“You were saying?” said Dashie.

“Ha ha very funny, could you get this guy off of my tail please.”

“One sec. Jink left now!”

As I did I heard the sound of stun bolts hitting metal, then the sound of an ejector seat firing then an explosion.

“Dashie you okay?”

“Relax I’m fine.”

I then heard the sound of bolts hitting metal again.

“Okay now I’m in trouble.”

“Give me a second.”

I turned the plane and applied the afterburners to catch up with Dashie and her attacker. He was all over her; they anticipated Dashie move and was firing just at the right moment for there bolts to miss her jet.

“Hurry up!” she shouted.

“Almost here.”

I fired a long burst, It hit the attacker right in the engine. The aircraft fell from the sky. I pulled up next to Dashie.

“Are we even now?”

“Yeah I think we are.”

“Night Fury this is baseplate we have a mission update for you over.”

“Go ahead baseplate.”

“Night Fury you, Rainbow 6 and your flight are to rendezvous with the invasion force. There are some fortified emplacements that are still operational. Steel Wing squadron are attacking the emplacements but are encountering heavy resistance from air and ground over.”

“What about the squadrons that are providing fighter escort for the bombers?” asked Dashie.

“They’re being overwhelmed by fighters.”

“Roger baseplate, were heading there now. King squadron remain here and finish off the remaining bandit.”

"Understood sir."

*

When I and Dashie descended below cloud cover we imminently became under attack from some fighters. The rain from the storm lashed my canopy. Dashie and I became separated but I wasn't worried, she could take care of herself.

I lost my attackers so I turned my attention to the emplacements, they were well camouflaged in the hills just behind the landing beaches. I went in for my attack; the AA fire was heavy so I stayed low to the tree tops. If I sneezed I wound have ended up with a Pine tree in my face.

The first target was dead ahead, it gave it position away when it fired its two large cannons. Lock on, fire, direct hit. Second target, lock on, fire and the same again for the remainder of the targets. In one pass I took out five positions but I seemed to caught the attention of the whole Solar Empire.

I was taking fire from fighters, AA guns, AA missiles and even heavy and light ground fire. The lock on tone rang in my ear; I hoped I had enough flares. Then as if my magic the tone stopped. I check my instruments on my control panel and everything was fine.

I was then hit by canon fire, the zip and the loud metallic clank of the rounds hitting my plane made be jump. I applied my flaps and drag fins, my attacker over shot and flew over me.

“It can’t be?” I recognised the plane; it was another SU-47.

“Is this Sky Marshall Whirlwind?” said a voice on the radio.

“Who’s asking?”

“Sorin. Newly appointed Captain of the Wonderbolts.”

That name brought back memories. Sorin would often come around to my house when I was a colt to hang out with Spitfire. I always thought he was so cool and I would often try to pull him away from Spitfire much to her dislike.

“It is.” I answered his question.

“It’s been a long time.”

“Yeah it has.”

“Is she safe?”

“Don’t worry she’s fine. I wouldn't let anything happen to her.”

“Good. I’m sorry that it has to be this way but you are my enemy and a traitor to the empire and Celestia. And for that reason I have no choice but to shoot you down.”

“But what if I were shoot you down first?”

“I doubt that.” he scoffed.

“Remember, I was in the Royal Guard. You and the Wonderbolts are a display team, a circus act. Your technology gives you an advantage I admit, but you lack the training and the experience of a true pilot.”

“We will see about that! There I've turned off the missile cloaking system. Now it’s a fair game!”

“Fool.” I said to myself. I pitch my nose down, Sorin followed as I let him into the hills. “Caution Altitude.” appeared on my HUD in bright red, I was just skimming the tree tops. By doing this Sorin would not be able to get a lock on me and had to rely on his canon.

“You’re smart I’ll give you that.” he said.

“You haven’t seen anything yet.”

I did a barrel rolled then pulled up. It was a risk but it worked. I knew Sorin would follow me but he was flying at slow speed so when he pulled up to follow me he stalled. I looked in the rear view mirror and saw his plane get further and further away from me. “Gotcha!”

I flipped around so I was facing him and let loose with my canon. My shots hit the air intake of his jet and blew up. He ejected safely, when the chair detached from him and his chute deployed he gave me a salute and I saluted back.

“Night Fury to baseplate. Down enemy airman known as Sorin at coordinates 2-9-6-7-1-“

An explosion rocked my jet, then another, I was hit.

“Ejector seat sequence initiated.” appeared on my HUD.

My hoofs were pulled in by the straps, the canopy was blasted off. The acceleration for being blasted upwards pushed me down into my seat. I looked down to see my F-18 explode and my attacker fly over it. It was another SU-47 but this one had a purple stripe on each wing. It was the same jet that I encountered with Spitfire during the return trip on Operation Wave.

It flew to the west, away from the battle zone. Again the pilot of that jet flew away. What a crowd I thought to myself. The tree branches slowed my decent and brought be to a halt about 15ft from the ground. I just hanged there for a few moments and thought about what had just happened.

“Me. How could I have gotten shot down?”

I unsheathed my knife and started to cut the ropes. (Before you ask, the knife would stun an opponent in a combat situation. It could also be used as a utility or survival knife) When I landed on the ground I immediately ran east because the invasion forces were in that direction and to the west was the Empire.

After a couple of minutes I stopped, I could hear voices; I took cover behind a tree. There were about five of them and they made such a racket. Stepping on twigs and talking, they were heading in the direction from which I came.

Whatever language they were specking it wasn't Equine, it was Russhian. When they passed me I had a look at them, they were wearing civilian clothes, old clothes and looked ruff. I took a chance.

“Red!” I shouted. The hoof steps stopped.

“Red!” I called out again, expecting the answer Star. But all I could here was mumbling.

“Answer or I will open fire!”

“Okay…S-tar, Star!”

“That will do.”

I stepped out from behind the tree and held my pistol in to the air. Five scruffy looking partisans with their blasters slung around their shoulders stood there, they looked a little confused.

“Are you the pilot?”

“No I’m Celestia.” The other partisans laughed at my joke. One wiped is hoof on his jacket and held it out to me.

“My name is Mosin, what’s yours?”

“Sky Marshal Whirlwind.” I shook his hoof, he was limb and if his jaw could hit the floor it would have. The only mare in the group said something in Russhian, I think it was “Oh my god” Then they all started to crowd around me, shaking my hoof, patting me on the back, I felt like a celebrity.

After we exchanged pleasantries I was almost dragged to their HQ. Four hours before the invasion Partisan groups such as this one were to destroy objectives and attack enemy patrols. The group that I found were just coming back from there operation. They lost eight comrades.

The entrance to their hideout reminded me of my hideout in the Everfree frost. Mosin gave three sort whistle and one long one. The branches were pulled aside by two guards.

“Come, this way.” he said to me.

As I was shuffled down the stone steps I could hear an argument in Russhian coming from the room below me. Mosin ran down and kicked open the door.

“Comrades. I give you Sky Marshal Whirlwind!”

As I entered the smell of BO, cigarettes and vodka hit me. Standing behind a wooden table with a map on it was the cell leader. He had his fore hoofs the table and scar down his left eye. What followed next was a party, dancing, singing and a lot of vodka. I was hounded by the partisans all the time, they wanted to hear my story so I told them. When I was shot down not too long ago a distress beckon automatically triggered in my flight suite, so I had a few hours to spare until an evac team would arrive from the beach.

When they did arrived I was a bit drunk, I tried to maintain my discipline but I couldn't help but crack a few jokes, like when we left the hideout I dove into the driver’s seat of the armored jeep and said “I’ll drive.”

*

Back on the Dusk Mist I was given a warm reception.

“Welcome back sir.” said a sailor as I passed him in the corridor.

“Thanks.”

“Good to have you back in one piece sir.”

“I’m glad to be back.”

I opened the door to the bridge, Dashie, Molotov and Bon Voyage were there waiting for me.

“Sorry I’m late.” I said when I poked my head around the door.

“Whirlwind your back!” Said Molotov throwing his arms into the air.

“Terrific.” said Bon as she kissed me on each cheek.

“I’m Glad you’re safe, but…”

“But what?”

“You smell like a brewery.” giggled Bon.

“That is the smell of true stallion Bon Voyage plus victory and celebration.”

“And Vodka.” she replied.

“Well at least he was drinking a stallion’s drink, not your fancy Le Mareian Wine.”

“I’ll have you know Molotov; wine is more popular in the world than vodka.”

I took my chance and slipped out of the conversation before I got dragged into a debate on what’s better Rosé or Kauffman. Dashie was looking out of widow; there was a continuance flow of boats and ships heading to Russhire in the distance.

“You all right?” I asked Dashie.

“Yeah, you?”

“Fine. But apparently I smell like Molotov.” Dashie didn't laugh, she just kept gazing out of the window, something was wrong.

“What’s up?”

She turned her head and looked me dead in the eye.

“ We've got him.”

*

Sorin was sat on a chair and hoof cuffed to the table in the interrogation room on the Dusk Mist. I was behind the one way mirror with Dashie.

“Do you want me to do it?” asked Dashie.

“No, no I’ll do it. Besides you might take it easy on him.”

“Why?”

“Childhood hero?”

“Yeah okay you do it.”

I put an ear piece in so Dashie could talk to me; my eye scan was needed to enter the room. In the white room I took out the cuff keys and freed Sorin.

“What are you doing Whirl?” asked Dashie.

“Relax.” I said under my breath.

“Is that better?” I asked Sorin.

“It is thank you.”

I sat down on my chair. We sat in silence for a moment.

“Spitfire?”

“She’s fine Sorin. Trust me.”

A few more moments went by.

“So now what?” He asked.

“Well you can start with, who was your wingman when you were shot down?”

“I didn't have a wingman.”

“Don’t give me that crap. Who was it?”

“I don’t know!”

I sat back into my chair and folded my hoofs and kept on staring at Sorin. I was trying to figure him out, was he lying or telling the truth. Then his eyes widened.

“Sorin who was it?”

He looked away. I had him.

“Who was it?”

He looked back at me.

“Who is it?”

“…”

I grew impatient. I threw myself away from the desk and stormed out.

“Guard. Make sure Sorin is comfortable.”

“Yes sir.”

“He knows.” I pulled Dashie to one side.

“You sure.”

“Positive.”

“Well what can we do?”

“Persuade him. Make him comfortable; make him see the truth of things.”

“Like we did with Spitfire right?”

“Correct.”

“Let them reunite with each other. Who knows maybe Spitfire’s new take on the empire might rub off on Sorin.”

“Rub off on him?” I raised an eyebrow.

“Um no I don’t mean like that!”

“Ha only joking. But after you saying that I might have to give Spitfire her own place.”

We laughed and began to walk down the corridor and back to the bridge.

“Could the pilot that shot you down be Fleetfoot?” Dashie asked.

“No I don’t think so.”

“Rapidfire?”

“No.”

“Who then?”

“Well you should know after all you are the Wonderbolts biggest fan.”

“Hmmm okay let’s think. Spitfire’s coat is yellow so her jet had yellow strips on it. Sorin is white and he had white stripes on his jet. Fleetfoot is blue but we haven’t seen him yet and…”

“Okay I get it, it’s none of them. It must be a new recruit.” I said as I opened the door to the bridge.

“Sounds like that to me.” said Dashie.

Molotov and Bon Voyage were still arguing over which is better, vodka or Wine so I and Dashie slipped passed them and both made our way on to the balcony above the bridge. We stayed there for a moment, we needed some fresh air.

“Now what?” she asked.

I took a deep “Next stop Moscolt.”