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About rpicardi1

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  1. rpicardi1

    fanfiction Amissa, The Lost Ark.

    Chapter 7 The Desert. Heading back to the temporary camp, the discussion continues with Lt. Johnson and Officer Tim riding on their trikes. “Those were such remarkable creatures” Sargent Lewis tells Lt. Johnson. “That was so fortunate to find such intelligent creature to be friends with in this strange world.” “It was certainly the last thing I expected to happen, being able to actually talk to these creatures,” answers Lt. Johnson. “How was your patrol to the Green Terminal?” “It went smoothly,” answers Sargent Lewis. “Doc covered a lot of territory with his new friend. The spitters kept their distance from us. We saw mostly Dodos, small mammals, and some larger herbivores. He got a close look at that stego machine. We should see if we can take it back with us so we can figure out just what it is.” “There it is up ahead,” reports Officer Tim. “How do we control this thing?” asks Sargent Lewis as he gets alongside the machine that registers as a Tec Stego. “Let me see if I can find a control panel,” ask Private Washington. “OK, here it is. I have control of it now. It is now set to follow us back.” “What powers it?” ask Lt. Johnson. “That’s what is so interesting,” answers Private Washington. “It eats the same thing as a wild Stego does. The food is what powers it. And, it is a girl.” “Such a strange land this is,” answers Lt Johnson. “Tamable dinosaurs, intelligent dragons that we can talk to, and now a machine that is for all practicable purposes a living creature?” “A very strange world we have stumbled into,” answers Sargent Lewis. “We have enough daylight left to send Doc, Corporal Meyers, and Private Root on their Parasaurs and Gally back to Amissa Village to get more rifles and ammo made during the night,” Orders Lt. Johnson. “If you can, pack up the Smithy and Forge and bring them back with you in the morning.” While the three soldiers head back to Amissa to complete their tasks by dark, the rest of the patrol is out looking for metal ore. They have found that the round river rocks and rock piles will yield several metal ore with their metal pickax. With the trikes enough narcoberries have been harvested to process the spoiled prime fish into trancs. “That will help us prepare tranc darts if we need to defend ourselves from the Mountain Dragons,” reports Officer Tim. “After talking to Meu Cheng, we definitely don’t want to harm any of them should we be forced into a confrontation with them.” “Better to have them and not need them then to need them and not have them.” responds Lt. Johnson. “When we have enough darts made up for the Longneck Rifles, we can test them out on some of the desert creatures before we make the trip up to the sky temples. Lets set up our guard rotation for the night and be ready to leave when Doc and his party return in the morning.” It is Day Five on the watches as preparations are made for the first excursion into the desert. It had been decided to move the temporary camp by the shore to the Green Terminal at the edge of the desert. That move gets completed as Doc’s party returns from Amissa Village with the forge, smithy, and four more Longneck Rifles with ammo. “Lets just take a Trike patrol out today and let the scouts rest in the camp.” orders Lt. Johnson. “I’ll fly scout on Andy.” With the preps complete, the patrol starts off heading Northeast along the river that separates the open plains from the desert visible across from it. A mesa can be seen in the distance from its towering cliffs. There is a waterfalls coming off of the jungle plateau that feeds the stream. They soon encounter a stone bridge crossing the narrow part of the stream. “Any idea what the significance of this stone angel is?” asks Sargent Lewis as he stops to check it out. “I don’t know.” Officer Kim answers after checking it out. “It must be some kind of a landmark. There are no markings on it to identify who placed it there or for what reason they used it.” “There are horses out in that desert,” reports Lt. Johnson as he flies in on Andy. “If you want to have some faster rides, you better get out there and rescue them from the wolves that are chasing after them.” “How do we tame the horses?” ask Sargent Lewis. “Just feed them rockarrots,” answers Officer Tim. “The wolves are a knockout tame.” “Will we need saddles once they are tamed?” “No, they can both be ridden without saddles.” “Roundup time,” orders Sargent Lance. “Help the wolves get them up in the box canyon with the Trikes. Once they are in there, tranc the wolves and see if you can passive tame the horses once they have calmed down.” It is one strange roundup as the wolves and horses get cornered into the box canyon. The alpha wolf, realizing what is going on, tries to make a break for it but gets blocked by the horns of the trike, then dropped with a tranc dart. The rest of the wolves are quickly dropped with tranc darts. With the wolves knocked out and the trikes blocking the exit, the horses mill around, then settle down. “Five wolves, seven horses, taming time.” orders Lt. Johnson. “Pick one out and get to work.” “Who has the rockarrots?” ask Private Washington. “I do,” Doc answers. “There was a patch of them by the spring. Take some with you and go tame yourself a faster ride.” “Excellent,” answers Private Washington as his offering of a rockarrot is accepted. “These guys can be ridden bareback with ease.” It isn’t long before the seven horses are tamed and being ridden. The taming of the wolves is a longer process. Given that they had to be knocked out so they wouldn’t kill the horses, the taming process turns out to be placing raw meat on them for them to eat. “We need more raw meat to tame these guys,” warns Lt. Johnson. “I’ve just ran out.” “We’ll take care of it,” Sargent Cisco responds. Riding out on their newly tamed horses, Sargent Cisco and Corporal Jefferson head out into the desert on a hunt. In short order, two shots are heard being fired in the distance. Several minutes later, the two return at a gallop. “Get this prime on those wolves before it spoils,” Sargent Cisco orders the men taming them. “Where did you find raw prime?” Lt. Johnson ask the Sargent. “We killed a Carno just past that hill,” reports Sargent Cisco. “It took two shots to kill it. There appears to be Egyptian ruins and a huge pyramid just beyond the ridge.” “Were those the ones on an island beyond the barrier?” ask Lt Johnson. “No,” answers Sargent Cisco. “These are part of the desert mainland. The ones on the island are much further out in the sea.” “Once the wolves are tamed, lets get the trikes back to camp, then scout out the area with our faster mounts.” With raw prime from the Carno, it isn’t long before a pack of five wolves are tamed. The even stranger convoy has left to return to the temporary camp when Sargent Powell asks doc, “Why did you stick a horn on the head of your white horse?” “I never put that there,” answers Doc. “She came with that horn on her forehead.” “You mean that Doc has found himself a Unicorn?” ask Sargent Lance. “It appears to be an actual Unicorn,” answers Doc. “Still, other then those Direwolves, it is just a horse like the rest of you are riding.” Arriving at the temporary camp, the Trikes are unsaddled, fed and turned loose in the pen. The patrol heads back out with Sargent Lance riding on the alpha wolf. The Parasaur scouts come along with Sargent Cisco riding on Doc’s nervous friend. Lt. Johnson is on the Argy flying scout. With the rest riding the horses, it leaves the four wolves free to work with Sargent Lance as they cross the stone bridge back into the desert. It is quite a contrast as they see the open jungle across the inlet to the left, along with Rock Drake Island in the distance, as they travel across the hot sand. Primitive kangaroos are seen browsing on the brush. A strange porcupine like creature is chasing after some unknown mammal along the beach. “Frack, that think can pitch its quills,” warns Sargent Lance as he watches the creature knock out it’s prey. “Safe to say that we better fracking stay away from them,” Continuing around the ridge, they finally see it, a huge pyramid that soars high into the sky. There is a large stone wall enclosing a courtyard in the front. The main entrance is adorned with huge statues of some important figure of royalty. “Looks like this frackin place is straight out of 3,000 BC Egypt,” comments Lt. Johnson as he flies back to talk to Sargent Lance. “It looks so brand new. Don’t head to the main entrance, there are way too many strange looking frackin predators hanging around there. Stay along the sea side of the entrance structures. There is a side entrance into the courtyard that is free of those nasty frackers.” The patrol heads on as instructed along the shoreline. Palms and berry bushes are found in clumps along the low spots near the water table. The side entrance is soon located where everyone enters into a large open courtyard. There is a gate at the main entrance which has kept the predators out. At the North side of the huge pyramid, an entrance way towers above. Like the main gate, it is adorned with statues of Pharaohs and other of royalty. A pair of huge wooden doors are framed by two imposing figures that look like priest with horns on their heads. “Do you think that the early Egyptians were responsible for this strange place?” ask Officer Tim. “No,” answers Lt. Johnson. “While the early Egyptians had figures of bird headed Gods and other creatures, there is no record of individuals like these with horns like these on their heads. It is highly possible that some little green men may be responsible for this place. They may have been influenced those early kings or may have influences the early Egyptians architecture that is here. Sargent Lewis, Officer Tim, Sargent Powell, Sargent Cisco, Corporal Jefferson, You’re with me. The rest of you secure the entrance while we are inside.” With a spooky creaking sound and a cold puff of misty wind, the left side door is pulled open. The interior starts to light up. “Everyone be on guard, the torches on the wall have just lit themselves.” It is a strange sight in the entrance chamber with the flickering torches lighting up the rows of statues of Pharaoh Kings lining the main corridor to the interior. A strange hum, like the sound that was picked up on the radio, vibrates throughout the corridor. The place is very clean with hardly any dust on the floor and no cobwebs anywhere. On the wall there are paintings and hieroglyphic symbols from the 3,000 BC era. Most strange are the symbols of the three Obelisks floating in the air, each with a distinct colored beam of light ascending into the sky. Several individuals are observed standing around the alter while a single figure floats above it. “This is most strange,” Officer Tim comments. “The green alter we observed yesterday did not have an obelisk floating above it. It did have several stone figures holding globes surrounding it.” “Something must have happened to the obelisk causing them to fall from the sky,” Lt. Johnson answers. “When gliding over there on Lin Cheng, I could see it lying on its side in the ocean against a rocky island. It was still glowing as if it still was powered. Something must have happened to them to cause them to crash to the ground.” Reaching the end of the corridor, the six man patrol find another door. It is made from metal and is mounted on a metal frame embedded into the stone wall. “Frack, it’s locked,” complains Sargent Lewis. “It looks like that we need a key to this door before we can proceed any further. There is no way we can possibly force our way through that. Whatever lies beyond the door appears to be the source of that sound.” “Where do you think that key may be located?” ask Sargent Cisco. “We have seen nothing here where it could have been kept in storage.” “There is this picture on the door of a red castle located in a canyon with what looks like a lava river,” reports Corporal Jefferson. “Could the key to this door be located in there?” “I guess that the only way we can find out is to find where that canyon is and go to the red castle to search for the key to this door,” answers Lt. Johnson. “Until we can open this door, we can’t go any further in here. Lets get back to camp and figure out what we should do next to find the way back to our world.”
  2. rpicardi1

    fanfiction Amissa, The Lost Ark.

    Amissa has received a major update that will impact the next chapter as it is being written. The addition of the pyramids in the desert are going to be a key to the puzzle of how the patrol gets back to the real world. Do expect additional chapters to take weeks to compose.
  3. rpicardi1

    fanfiction Amissa, The Lost Ark.

    Chapter 6. Rock Drake Island. Day Four on Amissa, at least, according to the watches that have a date counter on them. It has been a mostly quiet night for the guard duty watch. A creature that looks like a robotic machine has been seen glowing in the distance. It looked a lot like a Stegosaurus covered in angular metal plates. Most unusual was the appearance in the moonlight of a giant sauropod near the mountain that had the look of Godzilla of the Japanese Science Fiction movies. “I hope that frackin moving mountain stays away from here,” comments Sargent Lance as he observes it in the spotting scope. “Do you think that it has the atomic breath of Godzilla?” ask Private Miller. “No,” answers Sargent Lance. “I don’t see any of those glowing rubber like fins on its back. This thing has jagged boulders on its back. Unlike Godzilla, this thing is walking on all four legs and tearing through the trees like they are just broccoli.” With the arrival of dawn, preparations are being made for both a patrol and a visit to Rock Drake Island. Officer Kim and Lt. Johnson are constructing a two man canoe on the beach. They have decided that it would take too long and be much too dangerous to sail the raft back at the village down through the swamp. Doc has managed to find enough metal to craft up a saddle for his new nervous friend who has stayed close by his side all night. He puts it on her and takes her out for a test run. “I now understand how she was able to stay away from those raptors,” Doc tells Lt. Johnson. “She is even faster then the parasaurs.” “Go ahead and use her as your ride for today,” answers Lt, Johnson. “Let your Trike serve as the patrol armor backup. They were working well together yesterday when they helped eliminate that raptor pack that was after your new friend.” “According to Mei Lin’s journal, your new friend is a Gally.” answers Officer Tim. “She is one of the fastest dinosaurs that can be found on this island. “We’re ready to go,” Sargent Lance reports. “Is it going to be safe for the two of you to sail over to that island?” “We don’t know,” answers Lt. Johnson. “I’ll let you know what kind of fun and games we run into over there when we get back.” With that answer, Sargent Lance leads the patrol out of the gate with Doc on his new friend running scout, and Corporal Meyer and Private miller, running flank with their parasaurs. Sargent Cisco is flying cap with Andy. All the extra trikes are going along to serve as mobile armor or pack animals. “Lets get this over with,” Lt. Johnson tells Officer Tim as they secure the overnight camp before leaving. Launching the canoe, they set off with Officer Kim in the bow. It takes the two of them an hour to paddle across. As they are crossing, a Leed is heard growling deep below the surface of the sea. It ignores the canoe which looks a lot like the primitive dolphins that are tagging along with them as escorts. “Anything near that beach side cabin?” Lt. Johnson asks as they approach the island. “Just some Dodos and small mammals,” answers Officer Tim. “I don’t see the Rock Drakes anywhere. But then, they could be hiding from us in stealth mode.” “Lets land next to the raft and go check out the cabin.” orders Lt. Johnson. Landing, they drag the canoe out of the water placing it next to the raft, then check it out. “This is interesting” reports Lt Johnson. “There are several Rock Drake saddles in the crate on the raft. Whoever this raft belongs to must have tamed some of them.” As they walk towards the cabin, it starts to shimmer. Large claw prints are now noticed in the sand.” I think that we have company,” warns Officer Tim. “My implant is registering a Level 150 wild Rock Drake standing in front of me. Now what do we do?” “Talk to it in Chinese,” orders Lt. Johnson. “Either it knows Mei Yen, or we are both going to be dead soon.” It is a most strange several minutes as Officer Kim speaks in Chinese to the shimmering object in front of him. It answers back in Chinese, then materializes to reveal what it is as the conservation continues. “This is Meu Cheng,” Officer Tim tells Lt. Johnson. “He is a good friend of Mei Yen.” “He’s gorgeous,” answers Lt. Johnson. “Does he know what happened to Mei Yen’s and her warriors?” “Mei Yen found something called a portal and went through it. The rock drakes couldn’t go through the portal with them, so they came back here to their home island to wait for their return. That was a month ago. They miss her.” “That is so unusual,” answers Lt. Johnson. “He registers as wild. Mei Yen must have somehow ran into them and managed to become their friends. Given that some mid evil period fantasy books mentions that dragons can talk, I can see how that can become possible.” “How is it possible that Mei Yen was here only a month ago?” ask Officer Tim. “This place must reside in some kind of a time warp. It’s the only thing that can explain Mei Yen being here only a month ago when she came here from the second century in China.” “What just brushed up against me?” “Stay still,” Officer Tim tells Lt. Johnson. “Meu Cheng’s mate, Lin Cheng, is next to you checking you out.” “Is it OK to pet her?” ask Lt. Johnson. “You can pet me if you wish,” answers Lin Cheng as she materializes out of stealth. “I’m sorry that I scared you yesterday when you flew over here on your bird you named Andy.” “That is quite all right,” answers Lt. Johnson. “I didn’t know what to expect when I first saw you appear. How is it that you know my language?” “Your Specimen Implant allows us to talk to each other,” answers Lin Cheng as she lays down next to Lt. Johnson. “Your skin is a lot softer then what I expected for a dragon,” Lt. Johnson tells her as he rubs her neck. “That feels so good,” answers Lin Cheng. “It’s been a long time since I was last petted by a human.” “Did I see a Rock Drake with a saddle on it yesterday?” “Yes, you did,” answer Lin Cheng. “It was on Min Chow. He sort of forgot that he was still wearing it. I took it off of him yesterday and placed it into the chest on the raft with the others.” “Was he a tame?” ask Lt. Johnson. “No,” answers Lin Cheng. “He is wild like I am.” “That is most interesting,” answers Lt. Johnson. “Wild Rock Drakes that allow us humans to ride on them. Are there any other creatures on Amissa that are as intelligent as you are?” “Only the Mountain Dragons,” answers Lin Cheng. “You will need to be very cautious if you go into their territory. They can be very skittish about the presences of strangers in their home land. Unlike us, they can attack with fire, lightning, or poison bombs.” “We will certainly be very careful if we find the path to the temple in the sky,” answers Lt. Johnson. As they are talking, ten more rock drakes materialize out of nowhere and walk over to the two men. Lin Cheng, introduces them to the others who have now climbed up on the cabin roof to be at eye level with the rock drakes. “How did you humans end up on Amissa?” ask Min Chow. “We are part of a 12 man recon patrol that were looking for an enemy supply base,” answers Lt. Johnson. “Officer Tim is familiar with the terrain we were searching in, but even he didn’t know where we were when we found a cave that led us through some kind of a portal into your world.” “That’s what Mei Yen told us,” answers Min Chow. “In spite of all of the wars that have occurs in Indochina since Mei Yen found refuge in Amissa, the cave to the portal has remained undiscovered for over 1800 years. “Do you think that we may possibly find Mei Yen and her warriors?” ask Officer Tim. “Given the time warp that has brought us this close together, it may be a possibility.” answers Lt. Johnson. “We will have to find the portal where she left Amissa and continue the search from there.” “Is it OK if we have a look inside the cabin?” Lt. Johnson asks Lin Cheng. “Yes, go ahead,” answers Lin Cheng. Lt. Johnson finds a map of Amissa in the cabin on the desk. He checks it against the travel data marked on the Spawn Bed finding that there is one located back in Amissa Village, inside the Fallen Kingdom, one to the Sky Temple, and one in the desert tent city. “Interesting. One can fast travel to other locations using the spawn bed.” “Is it possible for us to fast travel using these beds?” ask Officer Tim. “No,” answers Lt. Johnson. “The beds are specific to the tribe that has created them. We cannot use them for fast travel or respawning.” A further search of the cabin yields a spare set of clothes, weapons, and tools. The preserving bin, as expected, is empty. Back outside, Lt. Johnson shows Lin Cheng the map and tells her what he found inside. “Would you like us to give you a tour of our island,” Lin Cheng ask. “I’d be delighted,” answers Lt. Johnson. “Put one of the saddles on me so you don’t have to worry about falling off,” answers Lin Cheng. “We are fully capable of climbing up vertical cliffs with ease.” “Do you need the bridle?” ask Lt Johnson. “No,” answers Lin Cheng. “It is not necessary for me to wear it.” “Let me know if I have placed the saddle on you properly,” answers Lt. Johnson. In short order, both rock drakes are saddled and ready to conduct the tour. The two Rock Drakes start out by taking the two soldiers on a trip into the interior of the unusual hollow mountain. Massive trees soar to the sky above. They are aglow with purple flowers. A huge rock column forms a support for the open rock ceiling. The two drakes now climb up the vertical cliff to the plateau above. The view is impressive with another fallen obelisk seen laying against a mountain in the far distance to the West. “There’s those pyramids on that far distance island,” reports Lt. Johnson. “Mei Yen’s was right about their existence.” “Lin Cheng, I see a green beacon on the mainland. It is far different from anything marking a supply crate. Do you know what it is?” “It marks one of the three terminals of the fallen Obelisks,” answers Lin Cheng. “We can take you there if you want us to.” “The rest of our patrol is headed over there,” answers Lt Johnson. “It is the source of one of those radio signals we have been monitoring on our field radios.” “How do you plan to get us there?” “We glide quite well,” answers Lin Cheng. “It is an easy flight from here.” “How will you get back if you take us there?” ask Lt. Johnson. “We will glide part way, then swim the rest of the way back,” Lin Cheng. “We are good swimmers.” “Then, lets go,” answers Lt. Johnson. With a running start, the two Rock Drakes take off in a glide. “You glide quite well,” Lt. Johnson tells Lin Cheng. “I can see the patrol up ahead. They have just arrived at the Green Beacon. Circle them so that they can see that you are saddled and we are riding you.” “We can go stealth if you want,” answers Lin Cheng. “That won’t be necessary,” answers Lt. Johnson. “Land by the lead Trike.” The two rock drakes circle around the astonished rest of the patrol, then come in to land. “Stand down,” orders Sargent Lance as the two rock drakes land in front of him. “It looks like Lt. Johnson and Officer Tim have made some new friends.” Everyone gathers around the two rock drakes as Lt. Johnson gets off the one he is riding. “This is Lin Cheng.” Lt. Johnson announces. “She and her mate Meu Cheng are good friends of Mei Yen. She tells us that Mei Yen and her tribe were here a month ago.” “She is able to talk to us?” ask Sargent Lance in surprise. “Yes, we can talk to you humans,” answers Lin Cheng. “That is remarkable,” answers Sargent Lance. “Is there anything you can tell us about this terminal?” “Mei Yen told us that you can upload your tames, your supplies, and yourselves to travel to other places that are called arks or store them in status. A month ago, they placed tributes in there in an effort to return back to their world. We haven’t seen them since.” “Thank you for that valuable information,” Lt. Johnson tells her. “We will track down every clue, every lead to find out what happened to them as we look for a way back to our world. Is there anything we can do for you?” “Just being our friends will be reward enough,” Lin Cheng answers. “Let us take the saddles off of you so you don’t have to carry them back to your home island. We can store them on one of the trikes should you wish to come visit us at a later time. If we find out where Mei Yen went, I can fly over on Andy to visit.” “What about your canoe?” ask Lin Cheng. “Just leave it next to the raft.” answers Lt. Johnson. “We have no need of it at this time.” “We’ll be back to visit in a day or two,” answers Lin Cheng as they climb up onto a high hill in preparation to glide back to Rock Drake Island. “Thank you for the tour and the ride back to my patrol,” Lt. Johnson tells her as she takes off. “What an amazing trip that was,” Officer Tim tells the others. “Mei Yen writes in her diary that dragons cannot be tamed. She never mentioned about being able to make friends with them.” “Indeed,” answers Doc. “They registered as wild. Do you think that we will be able to make friends with the mountain dragons when we find the path to the sky temple?” “Lin Cheng says that it is possible,” answers Lt. Johnson. “We just need to be careful with our first contact with them.” “Private Washington, Lt. Kim, anything you can tell us about the radio signal?” “The signal from Channel 16 is definitely from here,” reports Private Washington. “I just have no idea what it is or what it does.” “I concur,” answers Lt. Kim. Inspecting the terminal at the base of the green light column, Lt. Johnson finds out that it is as Lin Cheng has described it to everyone. “It’s just as Lin Cheng told us. We can store out tames and supplies here, or use it to transfer to another location. There is nothing in there about using this terminal to return to our world. Lets head back to camp,” orders Lt. Johnson. “We can plan to explore the desert next in the morning and find a way to the red one in the distance.”
  4. rpicardi1

    fanfiction Amissa, The Lost Ark.

    Chapter 5. The Patrol to the Sea. It is day three on Amissa, or at least, that’s what the watches are displaying, as the morning is spent preparing the supplies for the extended patrol. With the discovery of a construction process that had been given the name “Structures Plus”, a portable pen has been built, disassembled, and is ready to pack on the three spare trikes. Lt. Johnson, with the help of his night watch team, has manage to find a lone Argy to drop for taming. He has found a saddle for one in one of those spinning supply drops the night before. Another team is out on the Trikes on a wood and metal run. They plan to fill the forges with metal ore and wood and let them run until all the wood is consumed. Sargent Cisco has been busy on the Smithy crafting up the first Long neck Rifle along with some ammo. Unable to get his sniper scope to work with the new rifle, he crafts one up an Ark version and uses it. With the new Longneck rifle fitted with a scope, Sargent Cisco gives it the first test dropping one of the pesky gulls sitting on the mast of the stowed raft with the first round. “This will frackin do the job as a sniper rifle,” he reports to Lt. Johnson. “I can put up with the slow reload $hit of it’s bolt action so long as it has the ability to frack up what I am shooting at.” With the Argy now tamed, Lt. Johnson places a saddle on him for a test flight. He takes the bird up into the sky along part of the planned route of exploration, does some hunting with him, then returns to the village. Looks like Mei Yin is right.” he reports to Sargent Lewis. “We are on some kind of an island. I can see the sea from high up in the sky. It looks to be about half a days march from here. If we follow the river, we should have no problem getting around the high mountain to reach it in time to build a pen and shelter for the night.” It is noon when they are ready to go. The patrol lines up with Sargent Lance on point continuing in that order. The one exception is with Corporal Meyers and Private Root. Lt. Johnson has decided to use them on their parasaurs to scout up ahead of the slower Trikes to find the best route to travel. Being much faster then the lumbering Trikes, the parasaurs have the ability to quickly get away from danger. “If only my frackin high school buddies in the First Cav could see me now.” Sargent Cisco comments. “Riding on these Trikes give a whole new meaning to the words, armored cavalry, even if it is a prehistoric one.” Scouting up ahead on the Argy, Lt. Johnson has spotted possible trouble in the planned river route. He flies back to the point scouts on the Parasaurs, who are already heading back to the patrol and orders a change of course. “I’m going to have you take a path around to the South of this rocky hill. There is a swamp by the existing route that doesn’t have any dry path by the hill that one can use to stay out of it.” “Thanks for finding us an alternate route,” answers Corporal Meyers. “Patty and Perry were getting very nervous about us getting too close to that frackin tangle of vines and heavy brush. It is as if they have some sort of built in sensor that warns them of danger up ahead. I couldn’t see any safe way to avoid wading in that frackin mess given that the vertical cliffs from that hill came straight into the water. From what we could see, the flies in there were gigantic with the frogs feeding on them even bigger. A mammal almost as big as an elephant was feeding on the trees and vines in that swamp. Then, we saw something that was about the size of that frackin T-Rex with a huge sail on its back. It appeared to be after the fish in the water.” “South around the hill will take longer, but looks to be a lot fracking safer.” reports Lt. Johnson. “Just watch for the frackin predators out there hunting the smaller mammals. I spotted a pack of three raptors harassing some ostrich like creature.” “How are you liking flying recon?” ask Corporal Meyers. “This giant eagle is great,” answers Lt Johnson. “He’s slow enough that I don’t have to do a lot of circling around. He feels like that he can fly all fracking day without getting overly tired.” The overcast is now clearing some as the patrol resumes on it’s new heading. Soon, it is possible to see the tops of the high mountain cliffs from the valley they are traveling in. The one top looks like that it is snow capped, the other like a temperate forest. A waterfalls comes cascading down the slope from the top. “Are those actually floating islands?” ask Officer Tim as he spots a series of unusual rock formations floating high above them. “Unbelievable,” answers Sargent Lewis as he places a spotting scope on one of them. “Not only are they floating, they are even interconnected with what looks like a floating stone bridge. They appear to form a pathway connecting the two mountain tops.” “That means that there must be a path somewhere we can use to get up there,” answers Officer Tim. “Can you identify that strange looking bird that is flying up there?” ask Sargent Lewis as he hands Tim his spotting scope. “My God!” Tim responds after studying the flying creature for several minutes. “It looks like a dragon. Great Grandfather and Mei Yin, you were right. The Mountain Dragons do exist.” “Do they represent a danger to us?” Sargent Lewis asks Officer Tim. “According to Mei Yin journal, as long as we don’t do anything to harm them, they shouldn’t be a threat to us.” answers Officer Tim. About then, the parasaurs scouts come running back to the patrol as the lead Trikes start to get a strange orange glow around their heads. “That frackin raptor pack is after us!” warns Corporal Meyers. “Form a defensive line” orders Sargent Cisco. “Arm your crossbows with stone arrows. Let that frackin ostrich thing go past us. Then, we will see what kind of tanks we are riding on and charge them head on.” Armed with crossbows, the nine men riding on trikes turn to face the advancing raptors. The ostrich like creature goes flying between them as the trikes, now with their heads glowing brightly, paw the ground like a bull getting ready to charge, then take off at a dead run with the three big horns aimed like lances at the attacking raptor pack. A salvo of nine arrows hit the attacking raptors. Two of the raptors get impaled in the trike horns and are killed. A third has managed to leap over a charging trike at the last second. It gets two arrows to it’s head from the scouts riding the Parasaurs, then gets put down for good from a shot to the head from Sargent Cisco’s new long neck rifle. “Is everyone all right?” ask Lt. Johnson as he comes in to land next to the dead alpha raptor. “We’re fine,” Doc answers back. “How are the trikes?” asks Lt. Johnson. “Not a single frackin scratch,” answers Private Washington who was riding one of the trikes that has speared a raptor and has it’s horns and face covered in blood. “Good job everyone,” Lt. Johnson praises everybody as they regroup and harvest the three dead raptors. A shotgun is found on the pack leader and assigned to Private Miller. “It looks like that we have found a new friend,” Private Washington comments as the patrol continues on through the valley. “That big ostrich thing has decided to travel with us.” “It just wants the assurance of our protection,” Doc tells the others. “It sure does look skittish.” “You would be too if you had three frackin raptors chasing you all day,” Lt. Johnson tells Doc as he takes off back into the sky with his eagle ride. The patrol completes their detour coming back to the river. Up ahead, one can see the sea with several palm covered sandbars. A small snow covered island is in the distance along with a rocky one near the horizon. Closer to the South, a mountainous mound of tree covered rock can be seen along with a stretch of palm covered beach. “We seem to be getting closer to the source of the signal on Channel 16,” Private Washington announces. “The source seems to be coming from that green beacon on the southern horizon.” “When you reach the beach area, look for a good spot to set up camp for the night,” orders Lt. Johnson. “I’m going to fly over to that nearby island with the high cliffs and check it out.” Reaching the shoreline at the mouth of the river, the patrol finds a suitable flat area to place the pen for their tames for their overnight camp. There are harvest able resources nearby to fill out what they haven’t packed with them. A quick survey with the Parasaurs finds the area to be quiet with no major threats in the area. The Gally that has tagged along comes in to the newly constructed pen with Doc. She has calmed down a lot even letting Doc pet her as he gives her some berries to eat. “There’s a giant frackin fish stuck in the shallows,” Corporal Jefferson reports to the others. “Who wants grilled fish for supper?” “We’ll never have a better opportunity then now to take out one of those raft killers,” reports Officer Tim. Ten of the men of the patrol grab their spears and hatchets. They proceed to attack the stuck Leed which gets beached even worse, finally killing it. “That is a fabulous fracking amount of quality hide we got off of that creature,” reports Sargent Cisco as he takes inventory of the bounty that has been harvested from the dead Leed. “What are we going to do with all of this raw prime fish?” ask Corporal Jefferson. “It doesn’t stack.” “Lets cook up as much of it as we can,” orders Sargent Lance. “Blackin Cajun coming up,” Private Washington tells the others as he prepares one of several fires to start cooking up the prime fillets. Lt. Johnson comes flying back from the stone island. Both he and his Argy look quite scared from the experience as his exhausted bird lands in the pen. He is stroking Andy’s neck feathers as they both start calming down. “What happened over there?” Doc asks him. “I had just landed on the tropical beach near the base of the huge stone mound.” answers Lt. Johnson. “I could see that a large section of the stone mountain was actually hollow. It was quite beautiful in there with the towering trees and glowing fungus hanging from the vines. I was about to get off of Andy when I saw a shimmering shape moving towards us. It dissolved to reveal a huge four legged creature staring right at us. It gave off a loud hiss as those feathers on its head displayed a war bonnet. We were out of there in an instant as several others of those creatures suddenly materialized close by. Fortunately, they didn’t try to follow us over the water to come back here.” “That must be Rock Drake Island that Mei Yin referred to in her diary about a species of dragons that live over there,” answers Officer Tim. “You’re lucky that you both didn’t become its meal. Fortunately for you, the Rock Drakes can’t fly even though they can glide quite well. They do not possess a ranged weapon which is why you were able to escape.” “Still, someone must have been over there at one time,” Lt. Johnson answers back. “I saw a wood shack just inland of the beach similar to what we have packed with us. There also was a raft pulled up on the beach. It looked like that one of the rock drakes even had a saddle on it when it materialized out of nowhere.” “That is most interesting,” Officer Tim answers back. “It must have been one of Mei Yin’s egg tames. Or, it could have been one of the wild adults she made friends with given that wild Rock Drakes cannot be tamed.” “Then, it looks like the two of us need to go back there to investigate what happened to Mei Yin. Would you be willing to take that risk?” “I’ll go with you,” answers Officer Tim. “Then, we’ll craft up a raft in the morning and go check out the shack.” It is later that evening over a delicious meal of blacken fish steaks that Officer Tim explains in detail Mei Yin’s description about the dangers lurking in the swamps on Amissa. “She says that the Amissa Parasaurs have the ability to sense danger from a distance long before they can see or smell anything that could be a danger to them. That is likely why they were getting so skittish when you were approaching the swamp before Lt. Johnson talked to you. She also says that the Trikes will do that orange glow to bolster their courage together when facing a dangerous foe.” “The swamps are a place to avoid altogether. Besides leaches as big as house cats, which could infect you with Swamp Fever, the water is filled with mega piranha. Giant boa constrictors also live in there. Then, there are the giant flesh eating flies and the huge frogs that feed on them. Worst of all are the two types of crocks that live in the water. The first is something called a Sarco. They will grab its prey by a limb and tear it off by spinning their body. The other is a smaller croc that will ambush you by jumping out of the water, then pulling you under where you will drown. Both can attack you and your tames even while you are on a raft. There are also huge spinosaurs that live in those swamp. They are mostly fish eaters and are not a threat so long as you keep your distance from them. The Parcers are big enough that the swamp predators don’t represent any threat to them.” “She has a recipe that Doc can use to make a medicine to both prevent and cure Swamp Fever in case we ever need to go in there to gather some rare resources. There is also a recipe for bug repellent.” “We’ll make this camp a temporary base of operations for now,” orders Lt. Johnson. “In the Morning, Officer Tim and I are going to sail over to the Rock Drake Island and check out the shack. While were gone the rest of you can send out a patrol to check out that radio source to the South.” “This has been a most productive day. Hopefully, we’ll find some answers about how we got here and what we need to do in order to get back to the real world.”
  5. rpicardi1

    fanfiction Amissa, The Lost Ark.

    Chapter Four, Getting established. It is the morning on the second day on Amissa. Everyone’s watch is now dated as 2. Strangely Kim has noticed that his Chinese Rolex doesn’t register the day of the week, it only displays just the word day. “That is so weird,” Kim reports to Lt. Johnson. “There is no way this Rolex can suddenly have the day of the week blanked out to only display the word day.” “That is even a greater mystery,” answers Lt. Johnson. “None of us have been able to reset the time or dates on any of our watches, Lets set off on a patrol to the North and see if we can reach the source of the signal on Channel 28.” With those orders, the patrol leave behind all their extra items in their newly crafted storage chest in the village camp and proceed to head North out of the village. It is an interesting trip down the hill to the grassy plains where several types of herbivores are observed grazing on the trees and bushes. “I wonder if those Trikes can be tamed and ridden?” ask Sargent Lewis. “They would certainly make good armored mounts with those horns that could be used to attack any predators.” “Mei Yin’s says that they are an easy knockout tame that is best done using tranc arrows or darts,” Kim answers. “We just have to be careful that their friends are not nearby when we go to take one down or we will have to deal with all of them coming to defend it.” “What does she say about these giant eagles?” ask Doc. “She says that as long as you don’t do anything to harm them, they won’t attack you,” answers Kim. “Otherwise, they will tear you up with that sharp beak and their talons. They can be easily knocked out with tranc arrows and tamed. But, they need a saddle made with some materials that we haven’t seen so far if we want to ride on one.” “I think that we have a problem,” Sargent Lewis reports as they reach the river that is up ahead. “That looks like it is the Ice Age on the other side. Even worse, this water is ice cold.” “Lets build a raft to sail across and confirm your suspicions,” orders Lt. Johnson. “If it is a cold as it looks, we may have to wait until we can get cold weather gear for everyone.” With the raft constructed, Sargent Lance and Private Miller head across to the other side. “Do those look like frackin piranha?” Ask Private Miller. “They sure do,” answers Sargent Lance. “They’re huge. And a frackin good reason to not go swimming across. Brrrr, it just got bitterly cold.” Turning around, the two men head back. Sargent Lewis files his report. “As I expected, it is bitterly cold on the other side. Through Corporal Jefferson’s spotting scope, I can see what looks like some sort of Alien Obelisk lying half buried on the mountain side. It appears to be powered as it is emitting some sort of pulsating light.” “There also appears to be some sort of a temple on the slope of that mountain where the fallen obelisk is located.” “I saw all kinds of Mastodons, giant elk, bears, saber tooth tigers, and what looks like oversize wolves. Oh, that river, stay out of the water. We saw piranha the size of those spitter things along with huge salmon that looked about as dangerous. Other then those Devil Fish, it looks like that area had been taken straight from our Ice Age.” “Then, we will definitely need to obtain some cold weather gear before we can go check out that temple and that alien device,” answers Lt. Johnson. “Lets secure the raft in these shallows for now. We can use it later to sail down the river to that sea in the distance.” “It now looks like that we can craft tranc arrows, a refining forge, and a Smithy. We’re going to need metal ore and lots of narcoberries. Lets spread out in teams of four as we head back, gather the berries, look for metal ore, and kill any predators we see along the way.” The three groups heading back have managed to gather several stacks of narcoberries that will be needed for the tranc arrows. Lt. Johnson’s group find an outcropping of yellowish rock that yields all the metal ore that the four men can carry. The metal pick has proven most useful for providing a high yield of this much needed ore. Raw meat and hide has been collected from the pesky compys and the thieving gulls that fly in to harass Sargent Lewis’s group. Back in the village, two refining forges are crafted up and stocked with raw metal and wood. Sparkpowder is being crafted from the extra stone and flint along with the narcs from the rotten meat and narcoberries. Narc arrows are ready in short order. Packing two newly made saddles and a second crossbow, Sargent Lance, Officer Kim, Private Miller, and Sargent Powell head out to look for a pair of trikes to tame. Remembering the warning from Mei Yin, they find a male that has wandered away from the rest and bola him. “That didn’t frackin work!” yells Private Miller as the angry male destroys the bolas and charges him. “Get up on that boulder,” orders Sargent Lance as he and Sargent Powell hit the trike in the head with narc arrows from the crossbows. It soon falls to the ground unconscious. “Now, what do we feed it for taming,” ask Officer Tim. “Lets put all of the berry types on him and see what he eats.” orders Sargent Lance as he removes the tranc arrows from the trike’s head. “Looks like that he prefers the Mejoberries,” Sargent Lance reports. “We better get him tamed and use him to harvest more mejoberries before we go after the others,” Officer Tim tells them. Protecting him from any predators that could be in the area, the taming process goes well and they soon have a Trike they name Mike. “With a saddle place on him and Private Miller riding, Mike the Trike is soon put to work harvesting the nearby bushes. “This has sure saved us a lot of time gathering berries. Mike already has gathered four stacks of narcoberries and six of mejos.” “Lets go get his mate, get her tamed up, and head back to the village,” orders Sargent Lewis. In short order, they have their second trike named Trixie. Sargent Lewis saddles her up riding her back to the camp gathering berries all the way. Back in the village, more tranc arrows are crafted up from the saved spoiled meat and collected narcoberries. A hunting party has brought back more raw meat and hide from the dodos, those pesky primitive seagulls, and several pig like creatures that were tangled first with the Bolas before they were killed. “We could have tamed those pig things to ride but who wants to be riding on a meal for a T-Rex?” comments Doc. “The good thing about them is that we now have enough leather for ten more Trike saddles,” reports Lt Johnson. “Lets go out, and tame a trike for the rest of us, then get more metal ore so we can arm everyone with a crossbow.” The taming process ends up taking most of the afternoon. The experience of the first taming hunt has proven the value of going after high level Trikes so the teams have become more selective of the ones they take down for taming. “We now have our tank trike army,” reports Lt. Johnson after the last four trikes have waken up tamed and are saddled. “Before it gets dark, I would like to build a stone pen where we can secure them for the night. Craft the wall sections as you harvest the stone with your metal ax. It will weigh far less then the raw materials.” With those orders, teams of two set out crafting sections of stone foundations, walls, and a pair of dino gates. A pen gets built in a flat grassy plain at the North end of the village next to the commons area. “Who would ever believe that such large creatures could be so gentle around us,” comments Private Washington as the patrol gets settled in for the night. “Actually, if this were the real Jurassic World, we would probably had been all gored to death by now,” answers Doc. “As it was, some of almost got gored while we were trying to knock them out,” answers Private Miller. “Where’s Private Root and Corporal Meyers?” ask Lt. Johnson. “They took off on foot to the South after they had tamed their trikes,” answers Sargent Powell. “They said that they would be back by nightfall.” “Here they come now.” “Oh wow, they tamed themselves a pair of Parasaurs.” “I’m surprised how sweet this girl is,” Private Root reports as he brings them into the pen. “I have forgiven her for being so mad at me yesterday when I took her egg. She is a fast mount with good carry weight.” “Her mate is just as sweet,” reports Corporal Meyers. “The Trikes are good for our protection so we’ll still want to take them with us. These Parasaurs will make good fast recon mount.” “We’ll look at adding some of those eagles once we can make saddles for them,” responds Lt. Johnson. “That would give us some eyes in the sky.” “This has been a very productive day,” reports Lt. Johnson at their evening meeting. “As soon as we have crafted up better tools and weapons for everyone, I would like to send out a mounted patrol following the river to the East to see what is out there. Sargent Powell says that we should have a sniper rifle ready for Sargent Cisco by morning. Four man watch rotation for the night.” The second night in Amissa Village remains peaceful. The sky has cleared to reveal the brilliant display of the Northern Lights over the distant fallen obelisk. A wolf howls in the distance. Otherwise, it is a quiet night, something that can be most unusual in a place otherwise known as The Ark.
  6. rpicardi1

    fanfiction Amissa, The Lost Ark.

    Chapter Three. Amissa Village. “That was most interesting,” Doc tells Private Washington as the patrol continues heading for higher ground. “Those raptors, with their mouth full of sharp teeth, didn’t have chicken feet at all, but that Parasaur, which just had bony plates in it’s mouth, did.” “Then, it looks like that we can’t judge if a creature living here with chicken feet is going to want to eat us for lunch or not,” Private Washington answers back. As the patrol continues up the boulder strewn slope, Sargent Lewis spots something large up ahead heading their way. “Oh $hit!” warns Sargent Lewis. “Quickly, take cover in those rocks!” The ground is soon shaking as the huge thunder lizard reaches where they are hiding and starts looking around for an easy snack. “What is it?” ask Lt Johnson in alarm. “That looks like a frackin T-Rex!” warns Sargent Lewis. “Kill it!” orders Lt Johnson. “Use hit and run tactics on it. Don’t let that frackin thing catch you in the clear.” The huge predator cuts loose with an earth shaking roar that carries for miles, then tries to bite at its antagonists. “Our arrows are mostly bouncing off of its tough hide,” warns Sargent Lewis. “How can we kill that frackin thing?” “Find something tender on it to shoot at,” orders Lt Johnson. “Aim for its eyes. Shoot arrows inside of its mouth. Hell, stab that frackin thing in the balls if its has a pair!” Using the rocks as cover, the 10 marines and their two Vietnamese counterparts, attack the Thunder Lizard from all sides. It roars in pain and frustration as it gets an arrow into an eye, then a spear into a tender area of its underside. Thrown off balance by being partially blinded as it has stepped up on one of the boulders, it loses its footing and ends up wedged upside down between two boulders. “Hatchets!” orders Lt. Johnson. Screaming in pain and frustration as it thrashes about trying to get back up, the Thunder Lizard eventually succumbs to the death of a thousand cuts. It then ends up in everybody’s inventory as raw meat, raw prime, and hide when it vanishes. “Anybody hurt,” Doc yells out. “I’m still frackin alive if that means anything,” Corporal Meyers shouts out. “Who $hit their pants?” complains Sargent Cisco. “I think that everybody did when it made that thunderous roar,” reports Doc. “What the frack!” complains Private Washington. “This raw prime doesn’t stack and it will spoil in two minutes!” “It must be unique to this place,” answers Lt Kim. A check of everyone finds only the expected amounts of cuts and bruises from the strenuous activity of combat with the giant predator. “We got lucky with this one,” reports Lt Johnson. Had we been caught in the open by that thing, I’m most certain we’d be all fracked up by now.” “Now I know what the frack made those giant chicken footprints I saw in the mud at the cave entrance,” Sargent Lewis comments as everyone catches their breath. “My implant called it a T-Rex, Male, Level 55.” “Incredible,” comments Private Washington. “We just fracked up the biggest frackin predator the prehistoric world has ever known. Yep, I even see some mudder frackin Brontos in the distance feeding on those trees. This really is a freaking Lost World.” “What an interesting inventory this creature has,” reports LT. Johnson as he picks up a bag left behind when the T-Rex vanished from being butchered. A set of leather clothes, a metal pickax, assorted berries, a Journeyman Crossbow, and a pike pole.” “This is really good news” reports Corporal Jefferson as he examines them. “Those items are going to be most useful especially once we can make them for everyone. How do you suppose that frackin T-Rex obtained them?” “Probably from someone that thing killed and ate for its dinner.” answers Private Miller. “Who the frack cares, so long as it didn’t eat one of us for its frackin meal.” “Does that mean that there may be other people stranded here with us?” ask Sargent Lewis. “I don’t know,” answers Lt. Johnson. “We’ll have to figure out if they will represent a threat to us or not should we find them. Lets get cleaned up and find some place where we can better defend ourselves in case that thing’s mate should shows up.” As the patrol continues on, the ground levels out to grasslands with large deciduous trees with smaller bushes and boulders scattered about. To their right, a massive cliff is seen. On the left, the Red Jungle along with some other mountain peaks showing above. And far ahead, what looks like snow capped mountains can be seen. “Wow,” there is nothing recognizable here on my map,” reports Lt. Johnson It is as if we are no longer in the Quang Binh province. “In fact, I doubt that we are even anywhere in Southeast Asia at all.” “There is no way one can see snow capped mountains from anywhere in Vietnam, even while flying high up on a cargo plane heading towards Kae Sanh,” answers Lt, Kim. “Then, we have definitely ended up in a Lost World,” answers Private Washington as the patrol starts heading North once again. “Take cover!” warns Sargent Lance. “There’s a settlement up ahead.” “Lance, Miller, Powell, go check it out and report back here,” orders Lt. Johnson. Using all available cover, the three men proceed to carefully head over to the outskirts of the village, then they go inside. Half an hour later, they walk back to the waiting patrol to file their report. “That settlement is most interesting,” reports Sargent Lance. “It looks like that it was just built yesterday, yet, it has been totally abandoned for years. There is a thick layer of dust on the floor, the gardens are overgrown with vines and ferns, the pond has fish in them, but no signs that anyone or anything has ever been living there.” “Lets move out and search the entire area,” orders Lt. Johnson. “If all is in order, we’ll make this our base of operations until we can figure out where the frack we are.” The patrol enters this strange village made out of stone structures. It is laid out with a town square with a pond in its center. The surrounding structures are laid out what what looks like trading markets followed by housing units. All are made with white granite stone of the same architectural design. There are doors and windows, but no actual door or glass window frames. Some furniture is found inside. Balconies and walkways abound, many of them elevated and fenced in with stone railings. “It looks as if this village was abandoned before anyone moved into it,” reports Sargent Lance. “I do not recognize the construction style at all.” reports Lt Kim. “Probably the closest thing to that style are the old temples in Hue.” “It looks like a good place to set up camp,” reports Lt. Johnson. “The doorways and window openings are small enough to keep out any Rexes interested in us. The balconies and walkways those raptors and spitting things. The two ways into the village are easily defended.” It is late afternoon when one of the members of the patrol finds a strange box in one of the rooms where they are setting up camp. Lt. Johnson opens it to find a journal written in Chinese. He hands it to Officer Kim who is literate in that language. “It is a journal written by Mei Yin Le,” he reports. “She was one of the warriors of the Yellow Turban Rebellion that occurred in 184 AD. She found herself trapped here when she and the surviving warriors with her sought shelter in a strange cave far South of their homeland in China. She describes herself as the beast queen for her ability to tame the creatures living in this strange land. She calls this place Amissa Village. It was constructed for a secure place for her and the warriors with her to live in harmony with the temperate environment found on the plateau until they could find a way of escape from this island.” “An island?” questions Lt. Johnson. “How could have we possibly ended up on an island?” “She does not know,” Officer Tim answers after reading further in the journal. “She describes this island of having several intersecting rivers that divides it up into several distinct regions. An arctic wilderness containing a temple in the side of an active volcano that is nearby here, This temperate grasslands, a vast swampland of dangerous water borne creatures, that Red Jungle we walked through, a redwood forest with giant glowing mushrooms, another located along the seacoast, a vast desert with a tent city, a high mountain plateau with a temple in the sky, and an island inhabited by invisible dragons.” "Invisible dragons?” asks Private Root. “She says that they are of the four legged kind with no wings, but can glide and become blended into the terrain.” “Did they ever try to sail away from this land?” ask Lt Johnson. “Yes,” answers Officer Tim. “They tried sailing South to a place where they could see pyramids, but ran into an invisible wall. They then sailed parallel to the wall to find a way around it but lost one of their rafts when it was attacked by a giant fish. As far as she could tell, that wall surrounds the island and goes far higher then the Mountain Dragons can fly.” “What does she write about the beast that inhabits this island?” as Lt. Johnson. “She says that most of them can be tamed for our use,” Officer Tim answers. “Even that giant thunder lizard that we had to kill earlier today.” “So, it was not some kind of mistake when my Specimen Implant said that we could tame that Parasaur that attacked Private Root,” Doc answers. “And, even those raptors and spitter things,” answers Officer Kim. “So, how do we get out of here?” asks Lt. Johnson. “We will have to explore this entire island to learn its secrets in order to find the exit back out of here,” answers Officer Tim. “There’s some kind of a light beam coming down to the ground close to here,” reports Sargent Lewis. “It looks like some kind of a spinning capsule has landed on the ground next to it.” “Lance, Miller, Powell, go check it out,” orders Lt. Johnson. “What is that thing, some sort of alien spacecraft?” ask Private Miller as the threesome approach the spinning object. “No,” Sargent Powell responds. “My Specimen Implant says that I can access it.” “Go ahead,” orders Sargent Lewis. “We’ll cover you.” Sargent Powell uses his implant to access the spinning capsule which soon shatters into a kaleidoscope of crystals that vanish. “What happened?” ask Private Miller. “That Loot Crate, as it is called, went into self destruct mode as soon as I took everything that was in it.” answers Sargent Powell. “What was in there?” ask Private Miller. “It had a complete set of leather clothes,” answers Sargent Powell. “Interesting,” Sargent Lewis comments. “We can craft leather clothes now, but, it looks like that the little green men that brought us here has given us a set of them for free. We better head back to the village before it gets too dark to see.” “Wow, look at that sky to the North,” comments Private Miller as they head back in the growing darkness. “I’ve never seen anything as brilliant as that, even when I did a tour in Alaska at NORAD.” reports Sargent Powell. “This is one most unusual place.” Back in the village, a planning meeting is being held before the guard rotation is set up for the night. “Private Washington and Lt. Kim both have reported that they are getting a directional fix on those three channels.” report Lt Johnson. “The strongest signal is coming on Channel 28 on a heading of 330*. The one on Channel 16 is coming from a heading of 160*. The weakest on on Channel 4 is on a heading of 220*. I’m going to recommend that we send out a patrol to the North in the morning to find the source of the signal on Channel 28. The rest of us will make improvements to our location here. We will experiment with taming some of the creatures around here as soon as we have tranc arrows to safely knock them out. Four man watch for the night. We have a busy day tomorrow.”
  7. rpicardi1

    fanfiction Amissa, The Lost Ark.

    Chapter 2. The Red Jungle. It is early morning in the cave as the normal jungle noises continue on. A gentle refreshing breeze blows into the cave over the patrol who’s members are starting to regain consciousness from whatever had put them to sleep.” “Ohhh!” moans Sargent Lance as he regains conscious. “What the frack just happened? Where’s the frack is my gear? What is this thing doing in my left wrist?” “Everyone, look around, QUICKLY!” orders Lt. Johnson. “Sound off with what you find.” “I see nothing behind us, Not even our footprints.” Corporal Jefferson reports. “What is this thing in my left arm?” “It’s all clear up front,” reports Sargent Lance. “No signs that anyone but us has been in this cave.” “I don’t see any tracks other then ours,” reports Officer Tim. “OK,” Lt. Johnson answers back. “Everyone report in with what gear you still have on you.” “I have my K-Bar, my compass, my canteen, and that thing in my left wrist,” reports Sargent Lance. “Interesting, the date on my watch has reset itself to one and the time to 0605.” “I have my pocket knife, my canteen, my police whistle, my pocket watch that reads five minutes after six and that strange gem as well,” reports Officer Kim. “I have my K-Bar, canteen, and this embedded gem, reports Private Miller. “My watch has done the same thing.” “K-Bar, canteen, and this frackin implant,” complains Corporal Meyer. “My watch has set itself to 0605 with a day of one. What could that mean?” “I don’t know,” answers Lt. Johnson. “Lets continue the report, then we can try to figure out what the frack is going on around here.” “K-Bar, canteen, my watch, trip flares, and that strange gem.” reports Private Root. “K-Bar, canteen, my watch, this Prick 25, two spare batteries, and that glowing gem,” reports Private Washington. “$hit!, they took the medical backpack and all of its supplies,” reports Doc. “I still have my K-Bar, canteen, that implant, and my watch.” “I have my bayonet, canteen, my NVA radio, spare batteries, my Chinese Rolex, and this strange gem,” reports Lt. Kim “K-Bar, canteen, the sniper scope to my rifle, a watch, and that strange gem,” reports Sargent Cisco. “K-Bar, canteen, spotting scope, watch, and that gem,” reports Corporal Jefferson. “That is so strange,” reports Lt. Johnson. “Why would the frackin Gooks take all of our stuff but leave us with our Combat Knife, canteens, our watches with the dates and time synced on them, and selected gear such as a radio, my map and binoculars? How did they manage to implant these gems into our left wrist? How did they manage to knock us out, then leave without a trace of them being here? Why didn’t they just kill us or take us prisoner?” “That is a good question,” answers Officer Tim. “That is far from normal VC, NVA behavior, or even that of their Communist advisers.” “Washington, Kim, are you picking up anything on your radios?” ask Lt. Johnson. “No,” Private Washington answer. “All channels, but three, are clear. Channel 4, 16, and 28 are receiving a clicking tone that sounds like code. The sound is of a different pitch on each of those three channels.” “I’m getting the same signals on those channels as well.” reports Lt. Kim. “Can either of you get a bearing on those signals?” ask Lt. Johnson. “Not while we are inside this cave.” Private Washington answers. “Then, lets head outside and see if you can get a bearing on any of those transmissions.” orders Lt. Johnson. “Then, we’ll find someplace high, figure out where the frack we are, set up the long range antenna, and break radio silence.” It is a strange world of red vegetation as they step outside of the cave into the morning daylight. “Has something happened to our vision?” Sargent Lance asks Doc. “No,” Doc answers. “What gear we have is normal in color. It has to be this frackin jungle that we stepped into that is colored so weird.” “Did this area get sprayed with some chemical defoliant?” ask Officer Tim. “No,” answers Lt Johnson. “That frackin stuff just kills everything that’s growing, it doesn’t just turn it red.” “Do you think that your military may have used some tactical nukes in this area to stop the NVA supply lines?” ask Lt. Kim. “No,” answers Lt. Johnson. “The Pentagon has discussed the possibility of tactical nukes in this area but decided that they weren’t worth the risk of having the Soviets escalate in kind by giving some of their nukes to the NVA. Besides, the terrain around Kae Sanh is not suitable for their effective use. If this area had been nuked, everything around here would have been flattened by the blast wave, not turned red in color. Also, our watches would have quit working, not have their time and date reset to the first day of the month.” “That is strange,” reports Corporal Meyers. “When I picked up a stone to look at it, it just vanished out of my hand. Then, I got this strange message in my head that said, ‘Added one stone.’” “Oh Wow!” Private Miller reports. “Look into your implant. That is so weird! It looks like something out of that Beatles tune ‘Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds.’” “Interesting,” reports Corporal Meyers. “I’m getting this display in my head about all kinds of information about myself.” “What a medical dream this is,” reports Doc. “I’m getting readings on health, torpor, stamina, hunger, fortitude, hydration, strength, oxygen level, and a bunch of other medical stats.” “What is stamina, fortitude, and torpor?” Private Miller ask the Doc. “Stamina is a measure of how tired you are getting. Fortitude is about how tough you are in resisting what the environment throws at you such as the heat and humidity we faced on our patrol the past few days. Torpor is a measurement of if you are about to pass out or not,” Doc answers. “This is most interesting,” Corporal Meyers reports to the others. “My implant says that if I get a wood and ten thatch, I can use the stone I picked up to craft a primitive pickax.” “Give it a try,” orders Lt. Johnson. “See if some of these sticks and palm leaves that are lying around here will give you want you need for that pickax.” “Where did you find that stone age pickax?” Sargent Powell asks after seeing it appear in Corporal Meyer’s hand. “I did what the Lt. told me to do,” answers Corporal Meyers. “This is most frightening,” Private Root reports. “When I check out what is called my Specimen Implant, I find my name, a serial number and a message ‘Survival Quotient undetermined’” “OW!’ answers Private Miller. “That’s sounds like whatever has fracked with us is betting that we are not going to be around here much longer.” “We’re Special Forces,” replies Lt. Johnson. “Lets get our $hit together and prove them wrong.” As the men continue discussing the discovery of the properties of what are called the Specimen Implants, some of the local creatures are starting to show up to investigate them. “Does anyone know what this cute little chicken size reptile is?” ask Private Root. “OW! That mudder frackin ba$tard just took a chunk of flesh out of my leg!” “Here comes some more of them!” warns Sargent Lance. “Kill them mudder frackers! Use your K-Bar.” Six little vicious chicken size reptiles, known as Compys, soon bite the dust. “That is interesting,” reports Corporal Meyers. “My implant told me that it was a Level 4 female Compy. When I used my stone age pickax to kill that thing, it just vanished with a message that said that I got 4 hide and 12 raw meat. In fact, my implant says that I am now carrying 4 hide and 12 raw meat in one stack. Oh oh, I’m being told by my implant that raw meat is unhealthy to eat and that it will start to spoil in six minutes.” “Where did that thing bite you?” Doc asks Private Root as he comes over to examine his injury. “Right here,” Private Root answers. “What the Frack! I could have sworn that thing took a frackin chunk of flesh out of my leg. Now, it’s all healed up.” “If that little chicken thing can take a bite out of your leg,” ask Sargent Lance, “what in the frack can its big brother that made those huge tracks we saw in the mud last evening do to us?” “We had better get some better weapons to defend ourselves with before it’s big brother shows up,” orders Lt Johnson. “I have a bad feeling that if whatever made those huge tracks should ever find us, we would be just a tasty little snack for it. “Our Specimen Implants are telling us that we have just earned something called Level Ups.” reports Doc. “You can apply those to your personal stats to make yourselves tougher. I would suggest health and stamina for now.” “Everyone, get a hatchet and spears for now,” orders Lt. Johnson. “Then, we can work on clothes, campfire, and construction materials for a shelter.” “I need some frackin flint to make that primitive stone hatchet,” complains Private Washington. “Where am I going to fracking find that?” “Try hitting this rock with your stone pickax,” orders Corporal Jefferson. “Thanks, man. The boulder is giving up flint and stones.” answers Private Washington. “What the frack! That boulder just blew up into pieces.” “It must have something to do with this strange place,” answers Corporal Meyers. “It’s like that compy suddenly vanishing when I was hacking at it with my pickax.” “The same thing just happened to this tree when I was chopping it down for wood,” reports Private Miller. “Where in the frack can I find fiber for a spear?” “Try picking at some of those fern like plants over there,” answers Sargent Powell. “Yes! Fiber.” answers Private Miller in excitement. “Anybody know anything about these berries I am gathering?” “My Specimen Implant tells me that you can safely eat any of them,” answers Doc. “Just don’t eat the black or white ones. While they won’t poison you, the black ones can speed up healing an injury but will make you sleepy, the white ones will give you an energy boost but will badly dehydrate you. The rest are listed as just plain tasty.” “That will certainly be better then eating a cold can of ham and mudder frackers with all of that greasy lard on the top,” answers Corporal Jefferson. “When we can build a fire, we should cook up some of that raw compy and see what it taste like.” “I’m willing to bet that it will frackin taste like grilled chicken.” answers Private Root. “After all, those Compy things looked like chickens, it’s just that these frackin Compys come with very sharp teeth.” “These spears don’t have a wear bar associated with them,” warns Corporal Jefferson after he crafts up one of them. “I have a feeling that we had better make make up three or more of them.” “Good idea,” answers Lt. Johnson. “That way, we can throw a spear at whatever attacks us to slow it down, then finish it off with the extra ones.” As everyone continue learning how the Specimen Implants work, a shrill chirp suddenly interrupts Sargent Powell. Turning around to see what has made the sound, he gets a face full of green slime. “Aggg! I can’t see!” he screams as the bipedal lizard rushes in to attack. It runs into Corporal Meyer’s spear which breaks on impact. The creature gets killed when a second spear thrown by Private Miller hits it dead center in its body. “What the frack was that thing?” Sargent Powell asks Doc as his vision slowly returns to normal. “My implant calls it a Dilophosaur,” Doc answers as he helps Sargent Powell wash out his eyes with water from a canteen. “It registers as a Level 24 male.” Looks like a bigger chicken tried to frack with you,” comments Private Washington. “That’s not one bit frackin funny,” Sargent Powell answers back in disgust. “I couldn’t see a damn thing after it spat that frackin green $hit all over my face. Look at all the teeth in that thing’s mouth, it could have taken my arm off with one bite.” “That must be how they hunt their prey,” answers Sargent Lance. “They stun their prey by blinding it, then move in for the kill.” “What are these frackin Nerdy Glasses doing in it’s inventory?” asks Private Miller. “Who the frack knows in this weird frackin place!” Lt. Johnson answers back. “My inplant is informing me that we can now craft up some thatch clothes. Lets get some clothes crafted up, then start heading for some higher ground and get out of this red jungle.” "Hey, these don’t look half bad,” reports Sargent Powell as he crafts up a set and puts them on. “Well, at least you don’t look like Tarzan,” Sargent Powell kids back. A storm rolls in as they finish crafting up what is known as Thatch Clothes. A campfire is cooking up the dilo and raw compy meat. Three more Dilophosaur show up but are quickly spotted and ambushed by the patrol members as one of them acts as a bait. “So long as you see them coming, it is easy to dodge that green spit,” Private Root tells the others. “They stop and raise that frill on their neck when they get ready to spit on you.” “Excellent, we can now make slingshots, clubs and bolas,” Sargent Cisco reports. “Look what I just found!” Corporal Jefferson reports as he carries in a strange looking flightless bird. “I thought that these creatures went extinct a century ago.” “They did,” reports Doc. “A Dodo Bird. They have to be one of the stupidest creature that ever existed. We must be in the Land of the Lost. At least they aren’t going to try to take a frackin bite out of you even though they have chicken feet.” “Just let that noisy thing go before it attracts a bigger chicken that will take a bigger bite out of us.” orders Lt Johnson. “Ow! Ow! OW!” Private Root is yelling as he runs through the temporary camp as a large bipedal creature with a horn on the back of its head keeps pecking him as it chases him. Corporal Jefferson tangles up its legs with a bola as the rest of the group hit it in the head with rocks from their slingshots thus knocking it out. “Why was that frackin thing chasing you?” asks Lt Johnson. “I found this egg laying on the ground, so I picked it up.” answers Private Root. “A warning to everyone!” warns Lt Johnson. “Don’t pick up any eggs you see lying about. Their mamas are going to have a frackin royal fit and go after you.” “What is that frackin thing that attacked me?” ask Private Root. “That is a Parasaur,” reports Doc. “They went extinct millions of years ago with the Dinosaurs.” “Dinosaurs?” questions Private Root. “How did we end up in the land of the Dinosaurs?” “The stories from my Great Grandfather are starting to make sense.” Officer Tim announces. “He told me that he had found a lost land while exploring the rugged jungle near our home. Everyone just laughed at him when he was describing the creatures that he saw in that place. I’m beginning to think that he was not as crazy as everybody was telling me now that I have seen it for myself.” “This is most interesting.” Doc reports as he examines the unconscious Parasaur. “My implant says that we can tame this creature if we want to by just placing berries in its inventory.” “Lets just recover the bola and let her wake up,” orders Lt. Johnson. “Leave her egg with her. We can explore this taming thing once we can find a safe area to set up a more permanent camp where we got some protection from the area predators. Lets head for the high ground and try to reestablish communications.” With the high ground to the North, the patrol starts heading in that direction. The color of the jungle changes to normal as it thins out to more open terrain. As they stop to take a break at a small stream, a level up gives everybody the ability to craft up a primitive bow with arrows. “Excellent,” Sargent Cisco reports. “Not only were these bows easy to make, they appear to be quite accurate and deadly at range.” “Oh! Oh!” reports Sargent Lance. “I see three of those chicken thing heading this way. They look to be twice our size. Oh $hit, they got teeth and claw hooks on their feathered wings.” “What are we going to do?” warns Doc. “Those look like raptors. My science book says that they are pack hunters that can leap on their prey and disembowel them with a claw hook.” “Lance, Miller, Powell,” orders Lt Johnson. “Pick out your target and tangle up their legs with your bolas. The rest of us will use arrows on them with spears as backup.” The tactics work as three raptors race towards the group, get taken down with the bolas, and are killed by the arrows and spears. “Good job everyone,” Lt Johnson praises his men. “Lets butcher them up and move out.”
  8. rpicardi1

    fanfiction Amissa, The Lost Ark.

    Amissa, The Lost Ark (CNN) — "Watch out for dinosaurs." I smile at our guide's warning and enter the lush jungle growing inside Hang Son Doong, a 3-million-year-old cave in the central part of Vietnam. Water drips from a gaping scar in the ceiling over 100 meters (328 feet) above us. A spectacular sunbeam starts to creep down the side of the serrated cliffs. The shrill call of birds and macaque monkeys echoes off the limestone, drifting in from the unseen world beyond the skylight. "Watch out for dinosaurs. That's what we called this place when we first discovered it," caving expert Howard Limbert, elaborates. The prehistoric atmosphere made the reference obvious. We continue on, stepping deeper into the void that is considered by some to be the largest cave in the world. Located in the heart of the UNESCO-listed Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park in Vietnam's Quang Binh province, Hang Son Doong is one of the most captivating destinations that can be experienced in Southeast Asia. More people have stood on the summit of Mount Everest than have witnessed the surreal beauty inside these enormous chambers. Translated as Mountain River Cave, it was first discovered in 1990 by Ho Khanh, a local farmer who was seeking shelter from a passing storm in the jungle. He noticed clouds and the sound of an underground river gushing from a large hole in the limestone, and reported his findings to the British Caving Research Association (BCRA), who were stationed in Phong Nha at the time. Unfortunately Ho Khanh lost his bearings during his return, and the exact location of the cave remained lost for 18 years. In 2008 while hunting for food he stumbled across the entrance again, and returned the following year with Howard and Deb Limbert from the BCRA. https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/vietnam-hang-son-doong-cave/index.html Located near the DMZ in Vietnam, how did this cave manage to be hidden from the North Vietnamese, the locals, and the US military until discovered by a local farmer in 1990, then lost until 2008 when it was found again? How was it never found by the French during their colonization of Indochina? How come was it never found by the Japanese or British during WW2? That is the real mystery. This story is about a fictitious Special Forces recon patrol, sent into the western area of the Quang Binh province in January of 1968 to look for a hidden North Vietnamese bases rumored to be located in the area. A week later, all contact is lost with the patrol. Given that the story is about military personnel, Frack will be substituted for the usual F Bomb as was done for Battlestar Galactia. Some common military terminology in use during the Vietnam War; AK-47 – The Soviet Block automatic rifle that was issued to the enemy. It fired the Soviet standard 7.63 mm cartridge, but could also use the standard NATO 7.62 round, but, not the other way around. Arc Light – A B-52 carpet bombing mission. ARVN – Army of the Republic of Vietnam. Click – To hike a thousand meters. C-Rats – Military issue C rations. They contained a tin of the main course, bread or crackers, a dessert, cigarettes, pack of tissue, book of waterproof matches. Gook – This was the enemy HQ – Head Quarters K-Bar – A Marine’s combat knife M-16 Over and Under - The M-16 automatic rifle with the 40mm grenade launcher attachment. NVA – North Vietnam Military PRC-25 – Commonly known as a Prick 25, this was the first standard issue field radio that was designed around the transistors. Starlight Scope – A night vision device that amplified available light. VC – The Viet Cong, the Communist from South Vietnam. The Special Forces Recon 12 Man Patrol; 1.Point; Sargent Lance, Specialist in tracking and path finding. Armed with the short barrel AR-15 2. Local Guide; Nicknamed Officer Tim since no one can spell or pronounce his real name. A local police captain from the village of Kae Sanh. He joined forces with the patrol due to his extensive knowledge of the southern Quang Binh province. He has an extreme hatred of the NVA for first driving him out of his homeland, then for butchering his wife and three children and hanging their mutilated bodies in the town square. He is armed with a Thompson and his 1911-45. 3.Rifleman; Private Miller, Specialist as a Tunnel Rat and Hand to Hand combat. Armed with a Thompson with a 1911-45 for tunnel work. 4.Gerinader; Sargent Powell, Expert in the use of mortars. He is armed with the modified M-16 mounted with an M-40 grenade launcher nicknamed the Over and Under. 5.Machine Gunner; Corporal Meyer. He is carrying a Thompson on this mission along with some Claymore mines. 6.Ammo Bearer; Private Root is packing Claymores as well as trip flares and WP grenades. He is also armed with a Thompson. 7.Squad Leader; Lt. Johnson. Unlike the usual 90 day wonders, he signed up for Ranger Training and has had extensive experiences conducting recon patrols in enemy territory. He is armed with the short barrel AR-15. 8.Radioman; Private Washington. He is carrying the PRC-25 with a long range antenna and spare batteries. He too is carrying a short barrel AR-15. 9.Medic; Corporal Mays or Doc. His backpack contains an extensive amount of medical supplies to handle any combat emergency short of a blood transfusion. He is armed with a 1911-45. 10.Intelligence; Lt. Kim, ARVN Specialist in communication surveillance. He has brought along a radio tuned to the known channels being used by the NVA military in the area. He is armed with a Thompson. 11. Sniper; Sargent Cisco, Expert in hitting targets at extreme range, he is armed with a modified M-14 fitted with a sniper scope. He also carries a 1911-45 as a close in weapon. 12. Rear Guard. Corporal Jefferson, Specialist in Hand to Hand Combat. He has brought along a small telescope to work with Sargent Cisco as his spotter. He is armed with an Over and Under for this mission. Chapter One, The Cave. Kae Sanh, Vietnam. It is January 6, 1968 during the beginning of the siege of Kae Sanh that a 12 man special forces recon patrol is being assembled and briefed on a special mission they are about to conduct. “Intelligence reports indicate that the NVA are constructing a supply base just North of the DMZ in the Quang Binh province. Your mission is to find that base, report its location to us, and get the frack out of there before we hit it with an Arc Light. I have assigned Officer Tim to help guide you as he used to live in the area you are heading. Lt. Kim, surveillance specialist from ARVN Special Forces is going along with you so that he can eavesdrop on NVA communications in the area.” “I am also assigning a sniper, Sargent Cisco, to go along with you. We believe that one of Ho Chi Minh’s top generals may be supervising the construction of that supply base. If the opportunity arises, Sargent Cisco will put a bullet through his head. Otherwise, you are to avoid any contact with the enemy if at all possible.” “Given that the NVA is already dug in around this fire base, we will do everything we can to help get your patrol past enemy lines before dawn. As soon as it gets dark out, we will launch a mortar and artillery barrage along the path you will be taking North. That should keep their heads down so you can sneak past their positions. Maintain radio silence until you have confirmed that you have found their supply base so that the NVA don’t discover that you are looking for it. Once you get 10 clicks beyond our base, you are on your own.” That evening, under the cover of darkness and the advancing artillery and mortar fire, the special patrol heads out on their mission in search of a North Vietnamese Base Camp rumored to be located somewhere across the DMZ. Armed with the new short barrel close in support AR-15, along with the reliable short range Thompson Machine Guns, this patrol is designed to travel light. They do not carry any M-60 machine guns with them. Two of the men are armed with M-16 over and unders so they have the ability to launch M-40 Grenades with the backup of an automatic rifle if they need it. Otherwise, other then ammo, nylon blanket, and a poncho, they are only packing a map, a radio, spare battery, a Starlight Scope, C-Rations, grenades, a K-Bar, first aid kit, and water purification tablets. With the point man armed with a Starlight Scopes and the help of the harassing artillery barrages, the Marine patrol is able to sneak by the numerous NVA positions and activity in the area. They manages to get past the buildup of NVA forces around the Marine base and clear of the tangle of bombed out jungle by dawn. There is only whispered conservation among the men as they continue their way North through the rough terrain of the Central Highlands, avoiding the trails and easy paths where North Vietnamese forces could be waiting for them in ambush or be able to detect their movement. One needs to be constantly listening to the environment for any signs of a threat, even be able to smell the environment, if danger is present. Therefore, this special patrol is made up of seasoned veterans, none of who have ever drank, smoked, or used any drugs. Sargent Lance, who is on point, motions the patrol to stop and take cover. One of the macaque monkeys in the area has sounded out an alarm up ahead. The smell of marijuana and rank body odor now blows through the hot humid air towards the patrol. “Do you see anything?” Corporal Meyers whispers to the Sargent. “No,” he whispers back. “I can see some movement in the vines to my right.” “If we can, let them get past us,” whispers Lt. Johnson to his men. “If not, we run 100 meters to the left, turn right 50 meters, and set up an ambush.” The patrol, hidden in the jungle by wearing camouflage, remains motionless as the NVA forces travels close to them with armed soldiers, civilians pushing bicycles loaded with supplies, and a rear guard that stops for a moment to take a break before moving on. Ten minutes later, the NVA patrol is long gone. “Time to move out,” whispers Lt Johnson to his men. “Take the trail those NVA left for about a click, then break off to the North. Sargent Lance, keep a lookout for any tripwire traps those Gooks may have left for us.” “That frackin Gook peed on me,” complains Private Miller in a whisper to Sargent Powell as they move out. “It will just make you smell like one of them,” Sargent Powell whispers back. “Should I alert HQ about that Gook convoy?” Private Washington asks Lt. Johnson. “No,” answers the Lt. “We only break radio silence if we are hit or find our objective.” The patrol has continued on when a trip wire is found leading to a grenade. Sargent Lance disarms it taking the grenade and trip wire with him. “I’ll set this up where we leave the trail,” he whispers to Lt. Johnson. Suddenly, after traveling another 200 meters on the fresh trail, an explosion is heard up ahead. Black smoke can be seen in the distance as a deer, leaving a trail of blood from a stomach wound, bolts towards the patrol, then dashes off the trail to the right crashing through the jungle. “Set up your trap here,” orders Lt Johnson. “Then, get the frack out of here before those Gooks show up.” Quickly setting up the trap, the patrol heads off in separate file to regroup a short distance to the North. Five minutes later, a grenade goes off followed by the screams of the wounded and the cursing of several NVA soldiers as several automatic bursts of AK-47 rounds go flying through the trees in random directions. “Aw, too bad, they just got a taste of their own frackin medicine,” whispers Sargent Lance. “Lets get as far away from here as we can from here before they pick up our trail,” orders Lt Johnson in a whisper. The patrol continues North as the afternoon monsoons come pouring down where they find a small VC camp up ahead in the jungle. “It looks like it has been abandoned for the past several weeks.” Sargent Lance reports after checking it out. “Search this place thoroughly for any signs of booby traps or any other activity,” orders Lt Johnson. “If it is all clear, we will set up camp here for the night.” “I hope that we don’t get an Arc Light called in on us,” comment Private Miller. “We should be safe,” Sargent Lance assures Private Miller. “General Westmoreland knows that there are friendlies in the area. He plans to Arc Light what we find as soon as we break radio silence.” “We’ll camp here inside this hooch for the night,” orders Lt Johnson. “Four man watch every two hours. Don’t leave any trash behind from your C-Rats. Flatten out all of the cans. Bury it where you take a $hit before we leave.” The night is far from quiet as the moon comes out casting an eerie light through the jungle canopy. Some macaque monkeys start screaming making it difficult to hear what may be approaching them in the distance. A pair of beady eyes show up down the trail through the Starlight Scope, then vanish when Corporal Meyer throws a stick at it. The monkeys calm down as the unknown predator moves on to hunt elsewhere. Still, all night long, there is the constant thump of exploding artillery shells along with random burst of heavy machine guns and the occasional high pitch whine of a Gatling Gun being fired from a circling propeller driven aircraft in the distance. At daybreak, the patrol packs up, fills their canteens from a nearby jungle stream, buries and camouflages their trash, and continues on through the rugged terrain North. “What’s going on?” ask Lt. Johnson after the patrol has traveled several clicks through the hilly terrain and has come to a halt. “My compass is not functioning,” reports Sargent Lance. “There must be something in the ground that is interfering with them,” reports Lt. Johnson after he takes his out and sees that it is not functioning either. “Lets try to navigate by the sun if we can.” “This is most unusual,” reports Sargent Lance when the patrol takes a break in the afternoon. “I have not seen any trails at all for the past several hours, not even any game trails.” “This area is totally unknown to me,” warns Officer Tim. “I’m not picking up any radio traffic at all,” reports Private Washington. “In fact, I can’t even pick up Radio Hanoi.” “I’m getting no chatter at all from the usual NVA channels,” Lt Kim reports. “I hate to admit that we are lost,” answers Lt Johnson. “I have not been able to find any landmarks that make any sense in this area. “I do know this, we are now in an area that remains basically unknown to any of us in the outside world. It would be most ideal for the NVA to be hiding a base of operations here. Lets continue on to some higher ground until we can re establish some radio reception and figure out exactly where we are.” It is late afternoon when Sargent Lance spots something unusual up ahead in the valley below. “Does that look like a cave entrance down by that river?” he ask Lt Johnson. “It certainly does,” the Lt. answers. “I just don’t see it marked on my map. It must be somehow hidden by the jungle above. Lets go check it out but watch for any signs of the NVAs. It would certainly make for an excellent place for them to hide a forward supply base.” “So far so good,” Sargent Lance reports as he proceeds towards the cave entrance. “I see no signs of any trails anywhere.” “Here’s a stream coming out of here. The water is clear. I see no Gook footprints in the sand at the cave entrance. Officer Tim, do you know what could have made these giant chicken footprints over here in the mud?” “I don’t know,” Officer Tim answers. “There are rumors where I lived from my grandparents about a place where one could find dragons. It is just that nobody has never seen them. This area is so remote that nobody has ever explored or hunted over here. “The interior is huge,” reports Corporal Meyer. “It must be over 100 meters in height. How could no one know about this place?” “They say that Indochina has vast areas that have never been explored,” answers Lt. Johnson. “Given a world war, French occupation, Japanese invasion, and the Indochina war that led to the defeat of the French, I find it odd that there are no signs of civilization in here at all.” “I wonder if there is another way out?” ask Sargent Lance. “There most likely is given the amount of water that is flowing through that stream,” answers Lt. Johnson. “Lets look for a sheltered place to camp here for the night, it will be dark soon. Then, we will see how far we can go in once the morning sun lights up the entrance.” Heading into the cave interior in the evening twilight, they find it filled with jungle vines and other plants hanging down from the ceiling which has several gaping holes in it to let in the remaining daylight. “If the rest of this cave is like this, we should have no problem going through it in the morning,” reports Sargent Lance. “Lets set up camp behind these boulders,” order Lt. Johnson. “It should be easy for us to see and hide from anything that comes through this cave. Four man night watch as before.” The night in the cave is a far contrast from the night before in the abandoned VC campsite. There are the restful sounds from the flowing stream down below. A comfortable breeze blows through the cave to the outside world. It is a sharp contrast to the warm sticky air of the jungle night. The chirping of crickets fills the night air as it is occasionally broken by the sound of some macaque monkeys communicating with each other. Gone are the sounds of combat, the thump of artillery rounds, the whine of the Gatling Guns and the rhythmic staccato of the 50 caliber. “I never knew that one could actually find a tropical paradise in this all expense paid vacation the military gave us into the armpit of the world,” Corporal Mays tells Lt. Johnson as they are on guard duty. “Doc, Have you been shooting up on morphine?” Lt. Johnson asks him. “No sir,” he answers back. “I’ve seen too many of my friends get fracked up from shooting up on that stuff. It’s bad $hit to get addicted to.” Deep in the cave, a distant roar is heard from some huge unknown creature. It echos throughout the length of the huge cave. “What in the frack was that?” Sargent Lance ask Officer Tim as they are pulling guard duty. “I don’t know.” Officer Tim answers nervously. “Perhaps my grandfather was right. There may be dragons living in here.” “Whatever it was, it sounded like that it was a long ways off. We’ll know for sure when we can continue checking this place out in the morning.” With the dawn’s early light, the cave get lit up reveling stunning rock formations that have formed in the limestone from the dripping water from above. “Wow, it sure is beautiful in here,” comments Private Root as the patrol prepares to continue on. “If we stay along the rocks, we shouldn’t leave any footprints” Sargent Lance tells the others. “Be aware of your surroundings as we continue on,” orders Lt. Johnson. “look for places where you can find cover in case we run into something ahead.” The patrol continues on through the stunning stone sculptures. The landscape soon changes to a different type of rock formation as they pass through a dark area, then a returning twilight where the other entrance can be seen in the distance. “Frack! Why am I getting so tired,” Sargent Lance starts complaining. “So am I,” complains Private Miller. “$hit, we never brought any gas mask with us,” Lt Johnson says in a panic. “Get the frack out of here, NOW!” Too late to escape the effects of whatever is putting everybody to sleep, they all succumb to the effects of the sedating air and drop to the ground unconscious.
  9. Chapter 36. Peace at last. “Good morning sleepyhead,” Rollo tells Tammy when she wakes up the following morning. “How are you feeling?” “I haven’t slept like that in ages,” she tells him. “I feel so much better now.” “You are doing so much better,” Major Powell tells her after conducting a quick exam with the portable medical scanner. “You’re back to your cheerful curious self. Those cracked ribs are nearly all healed up. You are cleared to go flying again. Just take it easy for the next couple of days until they have healed completely.” “What about Rollo?” ask Tammy. “He stayed here with me all night in total disregard to his comfort.” “Let me examine him,” Major Powell tells Tammy. “Oh! This is most interesting. In addition to his arm mending a lot faster then is normal, his spinal injury appears to have healed itself up on its own overnight.” “Does that mean that I will be able to walk again?” Rollo asks Major Powell. “There is one way to find out,” answers Major Powell. “Loki, Eddie, come over here and help me get Rollo out of his wheelchair.” There is a cheer from the viking survivors and the others when Rollo takes his first steps unassisted. “Take it easy until you have regain complete control over your legs and get your strength back.” “Thank you Tammy, for all you have done for me,” Rollo tells her. “Such a strange turn of events,” Tammy answers. “Yesterday, the only thing that prevented me from killing you was Mary. Then, my good friend Eddie, comes up with a crazy idea where I end up letting you ride me into battle. Now, I can’t wait to take you for that ride I promised you.” “You are most kind,” Rollo tells her. “Becoming friends with you and your dragon friends was the last thing I ever expected would happen to me. As soon as Major Powell gives us the OK, I will go with you on that ride.” The rest of the day is spent in organizing the remainder of the Viking tribe. “We would like to move back to Vikings Bay if that is possible,” Loki asks Rollo and Captain Powell. “You had better ask Tammy,” Captain Powell tells him. “She and her dragon friends have been living there ever since Eddie became friends with her. It will be up to her if she wants to have you as our neighbors.” “Now I know for certain that these dragons are not yours or anyone else s tames.” answers Loki as he looks at Tammy. “Loki, I was too upset yesterday for you to get close to Rollo and I,” Tammy tells him. “You can come up now to pet me if you wish.” “I don’t blame you one bit,” Loki answers as he comes up to rub her forehead. “Yesterday’s battle had to have been a most stressful event for the both of you.” “You may move your tribe back to Viking’s Bay,” Tammy tells Loki. “There is plenty of room by your abandoned settlement to rebuild.” “Thank you Tammy,” Loki and the rest of the tribe tells her. “It is so good to have you and the dragons as friends instead of our enemy.” It is quite a party that evening in both locations as preparations are made for the final move. That following morning, with the OK from Major Powell, Rollo gets his promised grand tour on Tammy. “This is so much better flying on you bareback with none of that heavy battle armor,” Rollo tells her. “What a vast land this Ragnarok Ark is.” “Did you ever see any dragons when you were still living on Earth?” Tammy asks him. “No,” Rollo answers back. “The fantasy of dragons existing were part of our culture. We place carvings of their heads on our longboats with painting on the mainsail and our shields to create fear among our enemies when we launch raids against them. Eric became obsessed with capturing one when he first saw your kind on Ragnarok. It is why he killed your mate for a trophy to hang in his war room when he was unable to tame him. I’m so sorry that you had to go through that ordeal before our final battle to rid Ragnarok of him forever.” “It’s OK,” Tammy answers. “If it wasn’t for the arrival of Helena, then Captain Powell with the Rock Drakes, we would have probably killed each other off by now.” “Tammy, do you know where you and the rest of the dragons came from?” ask Rollo. “Come to think of it, I don’t,” Tammy answers. “With the exception of that one egg Eric stole from a nest, none of our eggs have ever hatch before. It is as if, like the unicorn and griffin, we were just created and place here to see what would happen.” “That is most interesting,” Rollo tells her. “Us from the tenth century, you fantasy creatures from our legends, those extinct creatures from millions of years ago, Captain Powell of the 20th century and his grandson from the 21st century, all were placed here in some kind of grand experiment by whoever created this place.” “What do you think will become of us in the future?” Tammy asks Rollo. “I believe that future is up to us to create,” Rollo tells her. “And’ it appears that we have made a good start that will ensure our survival.” “It has been a most enjoyable conversation,” Tammy tells Rollo. “This Ark is so beautiful from up here,” Rollo tells her. “I see the longboats are sailing North along the coastline of the great swamps. Lets head for Viking’s Bay so I can see what our new home will look like so we can start creating that future together.” With those discoveries and many more to follow, life on Ragnarok has settled down to the daily grind of life in this most unusual community. Most everyone has found a mate and has settled down to raising their families. Even the dragons have started to raise families of their own when, for the first time in their lives, their eggs start to hatch on their own in their nests. The kids on both sides have been thrilled in growing up together. There are adventures galore waiting for them as the caves get thoroughly explored, boss creatures get defeated, and an expedition that finds the Labyrinth of Time and successfully completes the task of unlocking its secrets. Does the Damaged Earth eventually heal itself up so it can be repopulated by a future generation of humans? Do our survivors ever send out expedition to explore the other Arks known to be out there? Those are topics for some future sequel of the Flight 19 crews that vanished without a trace, the crew from the PBM rescue flight which also vanished without a trace, the survivors from a destroyed future Earth, the Vikings that vanished in a storm in the North Sea, and the tribe of Helena that escaped to live with them. This completes this most unusual adventure for now.
  10. Chapter 35 The Raid Captain Powell has now removed the gag from Rollo as Mary has glided beyond sight of the outer outpost. “What kind of a dragon is Mary?” Rollo ask Captain Powell. “I’ve never seen one like her before.” “She is a Rock Drake,” answers Captain Powell. “She is a most interesting looking dragon,” Rollo answers. “How did we get past those sentries without them seeing us?” “She can cloak herself to become invisible along with anyone riding on her,” answers Captain Powell. “So, it is not a sorcerer's trick,” Rollo answers. “How come I have never seen them before on Ragnarok?” “That’s because they came with us from the Aberration Ark, then the Earth,” answers Captain Powell. “That’s most interesting,” answers Rollo. “How soon before we can we go back to rescue those two dragons and their lady friends?” “As soon as I get the recon report, we will plan and conduct a raid to rescue them.” answers Captain Powell. “I’m very concerned that my brother will try to kill them the minute you attack his fortress,” Rollo tells Captain Powell. “Don’t worry,” answers Captain Powell. “I’ll have my marines go in under cover to be in a position so Eric can’t get to them.” They soon reach the temporary camp on the plateau where most everybody have arrived. “That’s a Bloodaxe riding on Mary!” Tammy screams in anger when she sees Captain Powell and Mary come back from their patrol. “Let me at him!” “Do not harm him!” Mary hisses back with her war bonnet up full. “He’s been doing his best to protect Flame and Torch from his evil brother.” “Mary must see something in him that can help us to rescue your friends,” Captain Powell tells her. “Eddie, Cleo, help me get Rollo off of Mary. He’s been paralyzed from the waist down.” “Then, is it true that your brother did this to you when you tried to stop him from killing his four other brothers?” Cleo asks him. “It is true,” Rollo answers. “He has only kept me around because I am good working with the creatures of both of these world.” “How do you know this?” a now curious Tammy asks Cleo who is now close enough for Rollo to touch her on the forehead. “The story is written in my Viking past what Eric did to his brothers,” answers Cleo. “We are distant relatives.” “Oh!” answers a shocked Tammy. “I’m so glad that I didn’t know that. We would have never became friends had I known you were related to them.” “It’s quite all right,” Rollo tells Tammy. “You have every right to be angry at me for what my brother has done to your kind. I’m going to do everything I can to help your friends get them back.” “I still don’t like you,” Tammy tells Rollo with a tear in her eye as Rollo rubs her forehead. “I just don’t want to lose any more of my friends to your evil brother.” “I don’t want to see any harm come to them either,” answers Rollo. “Flame and Torch are some of the nicest dragons I have ever been with. They have been very cooperative with my effort to help them to stay alive.” “The rest of our patrols have just arrived,” Captain Powell tells Tammy. “Lets us get their report so we can plan a dawn raid to get our foursomes out of harm’s way.” In the meeting that takes place, a layout of the fortress, the cages, and the outposts with their fixed crossbow turrets, are sketched out in the sand of the plateau. With the Intel that has been provided, Captain Powell can now conduct the planning for the rescue. “We need to target these turrets with rockets before we can safely enter the fortress and free the hostages. Sargent Pasenna, assign 12 of our rock drake teams to take out these targets when we attack the fortress. We’ll give them the time needed to get into position while cloaked. I also need someone to be at the cages when we do open fire. Eddie and Lisa, that will be your job to take two other marines with you on your rock drake friends.” “There is just one thing missing,” ask Mayor. “How do we get Eric out in the open before we attack his fortress?” “Good question,” answers Captain Powell. “Anyone have any ideas?” “What would happen if Eric were to see his brother flying in on Tammy and have them ask for the release of the hostages?” suggest Eddie. There is a long pause of dead silence as Tammy looks at him in shock. Then, she answers. “That’s would be the last thing Eric Bloodaxe would ever expect, his brother Rollo flying in on me with all of my dragon friends in escort, then landing in front of the main gate to negotiate a hostage release.” “It’s brilliant!” Rollo answers. “It just might work.” “Are you sure that you would be willing to do this?” ask Captain Powell. “It could be extremely dangerous for you to expose yourself like that to get Eric to come out into the open.” “If it means getting rid of Eric Bloodaxe once and for all, yes, I’ll do it!” answers Tammy. “It is sure to get my brother to come out into the open when he finds out that I am riding on Tammy,” answers Rollo. “But how am I going to protect her when we do this? Eric hates Tammy with a vengeance. I’m sure that he will attacks her with one of the crossbow turret once he responds in anger to my request?” “We still have those armor vests back in the village that we used on the Rock Drakes when we went after Crazy Harry,” Joe answers back. “Go get them!” Captain Powell tells him. “Take Sargent Root with you and a couple of the dragons. Get them back here ASAP.” “We’ll do the raid as follows; Using their cloaking ability, our Rock Drake teams will get into position so they can take out the turrets and protect the hostages. When they are ready, Rollo will fly in on Tammy with the other dragons as escort to get Eric out into the open to negotiate for the hostage release. If things go badly, which I expect they will, our Rock Drake teams will open fire on the turrets, take out the rest of the defenders, and go release the hostages. We’ll leave Eric for Rollo and Tammy to deal with.” “Tammy, I know that this is going to be hard for you.” Captain Powell tells her. “Don’t go blindly charging in after Eric when you have the chance to get your revenge on him. None of us want to see you get badly hurt.” “Thank you for your concern,” answers Tammy. “I’ll do my best to control my anger when we go after him.” “Lets go over this plan again while we are waiting for Joe to get back with those armor vest.” The morning is starting to light up the horizon when Joe radios that they are on their way. “We have the rest of the dragons helping us to bring this heavy stuff out there,” Joe tells them. “We should be there in ten minutes.” Arriving, Joe and his team start fitting the armor vests on Tammy as they position everything to best protect her vitals. “It’s going to be heavy,” he warns Tammy. “It’s the best protection we can give you against those iron crossbow turrets.” “I can manage this,” she tells Joe after they have fitted her with 400 pounds of armor vests and she makes a test flight. “Then, lets get started,” Captain Powell orders. “Send out the stealth teams. The rest of us will head out there as soon as they are in position.” “You better tie me into a saddle on Tammy,” Rollo ask them as final adjustments are made on the armor vest. “I don’t want to accidentally fall off of her when we go in to face my evil brother. I pray to my Viking Gods that this will work.” With Rollo secured to a saddle on Tammy, the advance team have radio back that they are now in position to take out the crossbow turrets. Tammy and the dragons are now on their way. Halfway there, a private conversation is taking place. “Rollo, I’m scared,” she tells him. “This might have been a bad idea.” “Be brave,” he tells her. “Follow the plan. It’s normal to be scared when one deliberately goes into harm’s way.” “We have dragons coming in from the East,” warns Alfred at Eric’s fortress from the watch tower. “There must be over 30 of them following that Alpha Fire Dragon.” “This is it!” warns Eric. “Everyone to the ramparts. We finally have the chance to wipe them all out, once and for all.” “Oh! My! God!” Loki tells Alfred in surprise as he places his spotting scope on the lead dragon. “Get Eric up here. His brother Rollo is riding in on that Alpha Fire Dragon! He has several others warriors armed with crossbows flying with him on the other dragons.” “How in the frack did he manage to escape and tame that bitch!” an angry Eric yells at his men. “Hold your fire until I see what Rollo is doing on her. Get a frackin detachment down to the cages to guard those hostages.” Tammy has now circled around coming in to land in front of the main gate. The other dragons land on the bluffs just out of range of the crossbow turrets. “Eric, release those hostages,” Rollo orders in a loud voice as Eric steps out of the partially opened main gate to confront his brother. “Never!” Eric yells back as several of his men push the gate all the way open exposing a crossbow turret aimed directly at Tammy. “Don’t do it!” Rollo yells at Eric when he sees what his evil brother is about to do. “Die you bitch!” Eric screams as he goes to pulls the trigger. Two rockets suddenly appears out of nowhere hitting the turret just as Eric has pulled the trigger firing off its iron arrow. The explosion destroys the turret killing several of the men that have pushed it into place. Eric is blown back into the courtyard by the blast, his armor protecting him from most of the splinters of the shattered turret. 20 other explosions out of nowhere quickly take out the other turrets on the ramparts before any of them have a chance to fire their iron arrows at Tammy. The Vikings that are manning them are blown off the walls or into the courtyard below as the dragons come flying in off the bluff to attack. “Awk!” Tammy yells out in surprise when the heavy iron arrow hits her on the armor vests protecting her chest. Rollo gets thrown out of the saddle as Tammy gets knocked down to the ground from the impact, screaming in pain. He hits the ground hard breaking his arm in the process. Picking himself off of the ground after being thrown some distance away by the rocket that has destroyed the crossbow turret, Eric rushes out with a battle ax focusing on where Rollo has fallen to the ground, who is struggling to get back up so he can defend himself. “I should have done this long ago!” he yells as he comes running out towards a helpless Rollo with his battle ax raised high in the air. But, before he can reach Rollo to land the fatal blow, something grabs hold of his left arm, first spinning him around with the sound of bones being crushed, then tearing it off near the shoulder. “That was for attacking me and your brothers!” Tammy yells at him as Eric now faces his new attacker. He stands there frozen in horror, as his battle ax falls out of his right hand to the ground, his crushed severed left arm laying on the ground in front of him, when he realizes that the Alpha Fire Dragon is the one yelling at him. “This is for kidnapping my friends!” she yells at him again shaking with pain and anger as she sets his armor on fire with her flame attack. “And, This is for killing my Melvin for a trophy!” she screams hysterically at him before she bites his head off and spits it out towards the remains of the crossbow at the front gate. She then falls back to the ground due to the pain resulting from having used her fire attack on him. Down below, the detachment sent to guard the hostages gets taken out with tranc darts from four long neck rifles. The unit leaders surrender when they find themselves facing several angry rock drakes that materialize in front of them. The marines quickly tie them up as Eddie and Lisa go to free the hostages from their cages. The battle is quickly over as the defenders up on the gate that watched in horror, as their leader gets killed by Tammy, are now running for cover as the Rock Drakes come out of stealth to join the dragons attacking them. Their sudden appearance, with their two armed riders, shock all of the remaining defenders into laying down their arms. Captain Powell now orders a cease fire. Loki, the only Viking of any rank that is left alive, orders a surrender. The dragons fly over to land by Tammy who is now in a great deal of pain from her effort to kill Eric. “Are you all right?” Rollo ask Tammy as she gets back up and limps over to check on him, still frightened from what she just went through. “No! It’s hurts!” she tells him in a painful shaky voice. “I’m scared. I don’t want to die!” “You’re not going to die,” Rollo tells her while in pain from his broken arm. “Look around, Your armor vest has done its job saving your life. That arrow that hit you is lying on the ground. Thank you for saving my life. Take it easy. Major Powell should be here soon to take care of your injury.” “The impact from that iron arrow was most terrifying.” she tells him. “I thought sure that I was going to be dead when it knocked me to the ground.” “It’s a good thing that you were wearing that armor,” Rollo tells her. “Those things are dragon killers. I saw them take out two of your lightning friends a month ago. Can you help me get back up? My arm was broken when I was thrown off of you.” “Grab a horn on the back of my head,” Tammy tells him while crying as she places her head down so that he can reach it. The survivors are now coming out of the fortress gate as they get over the shock of what has just happened. Loki, with several other individuals, are walking up towards Rollo until a still shaken Tammy looks at them and gives off a warning hiss. They stops abruptly, then Loki asks Rollo, “How did you manage to tame her?” “I didn’t,” Rollo answers. “We had a common enemy and she chose to let me help her defeat him. Don’t come any closer. She’s been hurt and is still very upset over what we have just went through.” “I’m just glad that it’s over,” Loki tells them as everyone holds their position. “We no longer have to live in fear of Eric and his enforcers. Rollo, is it possible for us to live together in peace with these dragons?” “That will be up to Tammy and her Aberration friends,” Rollo answers. “I still don’t like you Viking,” Tammy tells him while sobbing as a result of the shock and pain of what has taken place. “So long as you no longer harm any of us, we will no longer harm any of you.” “That’s sounds fair enough,” Loki tells her. “You take it easy, It looks like your friends are coming to help you.” Having being freed from their cages, Flame and Torch now land nearby with Jenny and Barbara who get off of them and bring Rollo’s wheelchair over to him. “Thank you for rescuing us from Eric,” they tell him as they help Rollo into his wheelchair so he can start rubbing Tammy’s forehead with his good arm in an effort to comfort her. “Making friends with these Dragon been quite an adventure of a lifetime,” he tells them. “I always knew that dragons were very intelligent, but these Ragnarok Dragons are most exceptional. I’m so glad that we are now finally at peace with them.” “Last night, I was ready to kill you over what your brother had done to us,” Tammy tells Rollo as she has now regaining her composure. “I’m so glad that Mary came to your defense. You have proven to be a great friend. Perhaps someday, if Major Powell can cure your paralysis, you can fly bareback on me for the grand tour.” “That might be a possibility,” Major Powell tells Tammy as she and Joe have just arrive on Danny to check them both for their injuries. “I will know for sure when I can examine him back at our village.” “Please cure him,” ask Tammy with a tear in her eye as Rollo insists that Tammy gets examined and treated first. “I want to give him that ride without having to wear this saddle and that heavy armor.” “I’ll do what I can,” Major Powell tells her. “Joe, help me get this armor off of Tammy so I can find where she’s been hurt. It has to be quite uncomfortable.” “It’s a good thing that she was wearing this,” Joe reports after removing the makeshift armor and inspecting the damage done by the heavy iron arrow. “That point blank shot would have been fatal without it.” “You got a real nasty bruise and two cracked ribs from where that iron arrow hit you.” Major Powell tells Tammy after examining her chest area using a portable scanner. “It’s the same type of injury that us humans would have suffered had we been wearing this and some sniper had hit us in the chest with a high powered bullet. Take some of these narcs, they should help ease the pain and help with the healing of those ribs. Don’t even attempt to go flying until those cracked ribs have had a chance to heal up.” “But, I don’t want to stay here,” Tammy tells Major Powell with a tear in her eye as some medical brew is applied to the nasty bruise on her chest. “It’s such a dreadful place.” “With cracked ribs, you’re in no shape to fly back to our village,” Helena tells her who has now landed near by on Tarmac. “I’ll stay with you until you have recovered enough to make the flight back to Vikings Bay.” “I’ll stay here with you too,” Tarmac tells her. “So will I,” answers Eddie and David. “I now have an understanding why those crossbow turrets were so dangerous to our kind,” answers Tammy as all of her friends come over to comfort her. “Even wearing your protective armor, it still knocked the wind out of me. I’ve never been so frightened before in my life especially after Sleeper told me what happened to Watson and Volt when they were hit by them. Captain Powell and the rest of you, thank you for convincing me not to rush over here to attack this fortress. I now know for sure that Eric and his warriors would have killed me and my dragon friends had I done so.” “I’m glad that you chose to listen to reason instead of rushing off and getting yourself killed.” Captain Powell tells her. “We would have sure missed having you and your friends being curious about what we are doing in Ragnarok. We’re going to secure everything here and care for their casualties. With Eric and his enforcers gone, we should be able to turn over control of this fortress back to Rollo and Loki before we have to head back to Viking’s Bay.” “Neither one of you are going anywhere for now.” Major Powell tells Tammy as she sets Rollo’s broken arm in a makeshift cast. “You both need to get healed up before you do anything else.” “I just happened to think of something,” Captain Shrivers tells Captain Powell. “Does Eric and his warriors have those Specimen Implants like we do?” “What does that mean?” ask Tammy with concern as Captain Powell walks over to where Eric’s severed left arm is and examines it. “It means that Eric and his followers could already have been reborn somewhere else on Ragnarok,” as he shows her the Specimen implant in his arm and the one in Eric’s severed left arm. “Frack! Are we going to be condemned to fighting this frackin battle over and over for frackin forever?” “I don’t think so,” a familiar voice tells Captain Powell. “Belvello, how did you end up here on Ragnarok?” ask an astonished Captain Powell. “Who are these other people with you?” “These are the men and women from Helena’s Tribe that went with me to confront Rockwell so that Helena could escape from Aberration with the rest of her tribe,” Belvello answers. “When we were killed by Rockwell on Aberration, we ended up on an ark called Grumpytown and were taken prisoners by its inhabitants for their entertainment. Then, today we were replaced by someone called Eric Bloodaxe and his Viking warriors. The Keepers of the Arks, as they called themselves, sent us here in trade for Eric’s Vikings to punish them for their mistreatment of their favorite creatures, the Ragnarok Dragons. They will not be returning back here, ever.” “Thank you, thank you, thank you.” a relieved Tammy says to Belvelto. “That is the best news I have heard all day.” “Mistreatment is the least of it,” answers Captain Powell. “Not only did they kill Tammy’s mate for a trophy, they killed several of her friends just for their entertainment. They nearly killed her when we came here to rescue both our and her friends that Eric had taken as hostages. Be careful when you go up to see her. She is still quite sore from the bruising and cracked ribs she suffered when she was hit with that iron arrow from a crossbow turret.” “What a wonderful creature you are,” Belvelto tells her as he pets her on the neck. “Get well soon. Grumpytown was a most unpleasant place to be in. Our three day stay there was most unpleasant. An eternity in that hell hole will be a just punishment for what Eric has done to you and your friends.” “Thank you so much,” Tammy answers. “You are most kind.” “You are now in an elite group,” Helena tells him. “Tammy is quite selective over who she will have as her friends.” “Only three days in Grumpytown?” Captain Powell tells Belvelto. “Einstein was right about his theory of relativity. It was two months after you vanished from my training flight when our squadron of five bombers vanished in the same area along with a PBM sent out to look for us. Helena’s tribe left Aberration over a year before we ended up there. These Vikings left Earth sometime in the 10th century. When we escaped to returned to Earth from Aberration after killing Rockwell, it was the year 2046. That dirty brown ball you can see up there in the sky is what is left of Earth after the Aberration Ark smashed into it.” “Does that mean there will be no escaping from here back to our time on Earth in 1945?” ask Belvelto. “Yes,” answers Captain Powell. “Time can fast forward, slow down, or even be stopped, but it cannot be made to go backwards. Currently, there is no Earth left, as we know it, to go back to. The climate to the North on this Ark is much like that of England and Scotland. It is quite pleasant living up there. As you can see, we have made friends with the Aberration Rock Drakes we brought back with us and all the Ragnarok Dragons including their leader who you just made friends with. You just have to be aware that you don’t accidentally become a meal for some prehistoric carnivore that live in this world. Some of them are quite huge and nasty.” “How did you manage to tame all of those wild rock drakes and the dragons?” ask Belvelto. “We were at constant war with the Rock Drakes for taking their eggs to raise their young for our use.” “We didn’t,” answers Captain Powell. “They are all wild, even Tammy. When we learned that the rock drakes were as intelligent as us, they chose to work with us to defeat Rockwell so they could escape from Aberration. I have even made their leader, Mayor, my second in command. In spite of what Eric Bloodaxe had done to them, Tammy and the rest of the dragons became our friends when they learned that we were working together with the wild rock drakes.” “That is most remarkable,” Terry from the Helena tribe tells Captain Powell. “We were at constant war with the rock drakes when we stole an egg from one of their nest to raise Raymond and the others. What ever happened to Raymond?” “He was killed when he got into a fight with a T-Rex,” Helena answers. “It broke Cleo’s heart to lose him. She has since become good friends with Tammy’s dragon mate Tarmac.” “How did these people get here?” ask Mayor who is a bit upset at the presences of his old human enemies from Aberration. “It’s all right,” answers Helena. “These are the warriors of my tribe that died fighting Rockwell so the rest of us could escape from Aberration. They were traded for Eric and his warriors from the Ark Grumpytown by The Keepers of the Ark.” “We’re sorry for what we did to you on Aberration,” Terry tells him. “We didn’t know.” “As I was able to make my peace with Helena when we first arrived here, I can certainly make peace with the rest of you,” Mayor tells him. “Thank you,” Terry tells Mayor as he goes over to rub his neck.” The visits from the surprise return of Helena’s warriors continue as she tells them about where they are living and what has taken place since they arrived on Ragnarok. Several of them get the VIP treatment when the dragons volunteer to take them back to the village in Viking Bay to meet their spouses. There is jubilant celebration when they reach the village flying in on the dragons. Captain Powell and his Marines continue to round up the Viking survivors with Major Powell treating the injuries among them. Loki continues to help with assigning people to look after the wounded and take count of who has been banished to Grumpytown and who has been allowed to stay. “How’s Tammy doing,” ask Helena when she goes to check on her finding that Rollo has been staying with her all of this time. “She’s been resting comfortably,” Rollo tells her. “That’s just what Major Powell has ordered for her,” Helena answers. “The past 24 hours took quite an emotional toll on her. A good days rest will help her to heal up so much faster. Then, we can all go back home together.”
  11. Chapter 34. Rollo Bloodaxe. It is written in early Viking history about Eric Bloodaxe and how he rose to power when he killed four of his brothers. A fifth brother survived that attack but not much else is written about him. In this fictional story of the Vikings on Ragnarok, Rollo has survived after having his back broken in that fight for domination. The injury has left him a cripple who has to rely on a wheelchair to get about. Eric has let him live given that his brother was good with taming and training the beast in his kingdom. How they all ended up on Ragnarok remains a mystery. One thing remains certain. While in Ragnarok, Eric has had a passion with wanting to have his own dragon to ride on to conquer all of Ragnarok. Capturing the wild ones to tame them had proven to be all but impossible. His Viking warriors had been able to capture some of them, but, in spite of their best efforts, were unable to tame any of them. He even had an egg successfully stolen from one of their nest and had his brother attempt to hatch and raise it. That had failed when the baby dragon starved to death because no one could obtain the dragon milk needed to feed it. He had beaten Rollo mercilessly over that lost. But, between his obsession and his killing of several of the Ragnarok Dragons, he had finally alienated them all into an all out war that resulted in so many casualties that the dragons moved away and Eric’s Vikings had moved into the southern canyon to establish their fortress. So, it was with extreme interest that Eric goes down to the cages that have been built to hold the two fire dragons that were captured in the nets when he saw the two women riding on them through the canyons that afternoon. “Wonderful, this is the first time we have ever captured dragons that have been successfully tamed,” Eric proclaims as he examines the semiconscious creatures. “You had better move slowly with getting them to work with you,” warns his brother Rollo as he examines the semiconscious dragons from his wheelchair. “Unlike a horse, dragons are only loyal to their master.” He has already confirmed in his initial examination of them that they are far more intelligent then anyone realizes. Wondering how the two ladies had managed to be riding on wild dragons and not tames, he whispers into their ear for them to be submissive if they want to stay alive, that he will try to give them their freedom when the opportunity arises. It is late afternoon in their search for the four explorers when Eddie and Lisa spot Viking Longboats in the bay ahead. “Stealth Mode,” Eddie orders both rock drakes. “Land on the butte above the arch so we can see what is going on down there.” A sentry tower is spotted as the two drakes come in to land. They quickly bank away landing on a lower butte nearby. “Good job spotting those sentries,” Eddie whispers to David. “They have iron crossbows mounted in those turrets.” “Oh NO!” Lisa whispers back to Eddie. “They captured Flame and Torch.” “I see Jenny and Barbara in a cage next to them,” reports Eddie in a whisper as he places a spotting scope on them. “It looks like they are being questioned by a Viking leader. There’s someone in a wheel chair by Flame and Torch. Is that Eric Bloodaxe standing by them?” Thwack! An iron crossbow arrow shatters a rock close to where David is standing sending up a shower of sparks and bits of gravel. “Lets get out of here!” orders Eddie in a panic. “Did you hear that?” the sentry tells his friend. “Yes, but I still don’t see anything but that dust cloud that just appeared,” answers the second sentry. “We better send somebody over there to check it out and recover that arrow.” Now on the plateau and out of sight of the sentries, Eddie radios back to Captain Powell. “They’ve been captured!” Eddie reports excitedly. “What is their status?” ask Captain Powell with concern. “The Vikings have Jenny, Barbara, and their dragons in cages by their fortress on the bay,” Eddie answers back. “They appear to be OK for now.” “Stay hidden up on the plateau,” orders Captain Powell. “I’m sending out a recon team to go check out that Viking Fortress once it gets dark. Then, we can plan to rescue their hostages.” “What are we up against?” Harold says to Alfred as they inspect the lower butte after the rock drakes have left it in stealth mode. “Those look like dragon tracks, but their claw marks are so much bigger. There are no tracks here made by their wings. Could they be of the four legged variety. “There were definitely dragons here,” answers Alfred. “Yet, I saw nothing. It is as if they were invisible.” “There is no such thing as an invisible four legged dragon,” orders Olaf when the other two file their report. “You better keep quiet about this before Eric sends you out on patrol into the desert of the Death Worms.” Having been through being a captive before, Jenny and Barbara successfully play Eric for the fool that he is in order to buy some time to await rescue as he questions them about their dragon tames. Barbara has played dumb in not knowing the viking tongue but knows from the discussion among Eric and Loki that something out of the norm has just taken place. Eric soon leaves with Loki to go investigate the strange activity for himself. “I’m sorry for getting you into this mess,” Torch tells Jenny as he comes up as close as he can to her. “It’s not your fault,” answers Jenny. “None of us knew that there was a trap set up for us out there.” “Don’t let Eric or anyone else know that you and your dragons can talk to each other,” a voice warns them from the shadows. “My brother would kill them if he ever found out. Then, he would kill you for not telling him.” “How did you end up paralyzed?” Jenny ask him as Torch comes up to the edge of his cage to listen in on the conversation. “Years ago, Eric attacked all of his brothers in his effort to become supreme leader of this Viking Clan. He had left me for dead when he broke my back with his battle ax. When he later found out that I had survived, he kept me his prisoner in this wheelchair as punishment for remaining alive.” “How did you end up on Ragnarok?” Barbara asks him. “While sailing across the North Sea to conduct a raid on a Monastery in the British Isles, we ran into a freak storm. It sank our fleet of longboats as it tossed us into the stormy sea. A strange glow lit up the angry sea as we prayed to Odin for deliverance. Before we knew what had happened, we found ourselves in this strange new world with all of its even stranger creatures.” “Be quiet now, someone is coming.” “Rollo, how are your getting along with these dragons?” ask Loki as he returns from investigating the report from Olaf. “They are adjusting well to being confined,” Rollo answers. “I could use some raw meat to feed them, they appear to be quite hungry. Bring the ladies something to eat as well.” The food soon arrives with some fruit for the hostages and two slabs of raw phenoma for the dragons. “Why aren’t they eating the raw meat?” ask one of the warriors after placing the meat just inside the cage. “I think that I know why,” answers Rollo. He goes in to the cage with Flame, cuts off a piece of the phenoma, and eats it in front of him. Then, he offers the slab to Flame who carefully takes it out of his hand and starts eating it. “They certainly don’t trust any of us,” the warrior says as torch hisses at him after he places the other slab of meat nearby and quickly runs away from the cage. “Would you if you were our captive?” Rollo hollers back at him as he pulls the raw meat into the cage for Torch to eat. “I pray to the Gods that your friends can get here to rescue you soon, he whispers to Torch. I don’t know how much longer I am going to be able to protect you two and your lady friends from Eric and his enforcers.” Back at the Mesa, where Eddie and Lisa are located, Captain Powell has just arrived with 14 Rock Drake and their fully armed flight crews. 20 of the Ragnarok Dragons have also arrived with Tammy and several members of Helen’s tribe. Joe and Major Powell come gliding in on Danny. “Eddie tells me they have guarded their fortress with crossbow turrets,” Captain Powell tells Tammy who is still quite upset that they can’t just go charging in there. “They took a shot at David while he was in stealth and fortunately missed. As soon as it is dark enough, I’m going to take the rock drakes in to find the rest of those turrets so we can mark them for destruction. They can see in infrared where Eric’s hoard is located. We can use our night vision equipment to find all of his outpost and main defenses. I’ll sneak into the fortress with Mary to see if I can make contact with the hostages. When we know what we are up against, we can then plan a raid to go rescue them.” “It still bothers me that we just can’t go charging in after them,” an upset Tammy tells Captain Powell. “Be patient,” he tells her. “You will soon have your revenge against them.” Eddie and Cleo are now with Tammy as they try to comfort her while the others head out on their recon patrol. “I don’t want to lose any more of my friends to those evil vikings,” Tammy tells Eddie while in tears. “Neither do we,” Eddie tells her. “It was hard for me to stay hidden when the zombie plague struck on Earth and killed my parents. Just be patient, we are here for you. Captain Powell will find a way to rescue your friends.” “Thank you so much for being such a good friend,” Tammy tells him. “The recon goes smoothly in spite of the heighten alert status of Eric’s Viking warriors. Several iron arrows get fired at the sounds of heavy drake feet scratching about in the cliffs, but are all way off the mark as they shatter whatever they hit. Captain Powell and Mary successfully make it into the canyon where the cages are located. Rollo is still with the captives half asleep in his wheelchair when they arrive. “Don’t do anything or you are dead,” Mary tells Rollo quietly as she sneaks up behind his wheelchair. “Thank the Gods you have arrived to rescue them,” Rollo whispers back. “I don’t know how much longer I could have kept my brother from killing them. Take me with you or I will be dead for sure.” “Damn, Now what are we going to do,” Captain Powell says quietly to himself when he hears some of the crossbows being fired as he checks on the status of the four hostages. “Everybody hang tight, we’ll have you out of here as soon as we can eliminate the threat of those crossbow turrets.” “Lets take Rollo with us,” Mary tells Captain Powell. “He could prove to be quite useful.” “Are you sure about this?” Ask Captain Powell who is quite shocked at Mary’s request. “I am very sure,” Mary answers back. “Flame and Torch have told me that he has treated them well in spite of the difficult conditions down here.” “Rollo, I’m placing my trust in Mary’s judgment about bringing you back with us.” Captain Powell tells him. “You realize that I am going to have to handcuff and gag you for our security when we leave here.” “I understand,” Rollo answers back. With Rollo bound, gagged and tied to the forward saddle, Captain Powell and Mary proceed to sneak back out of the prison area and away from danger.
  12. Chapter 33. Kidnapped. It is three days later when Coronal Powell calls everybody together for a morning meeting. “Good job everyone on constructing our new home,” he announces. “We can now settle down to exploring and living on this new Ark at our leisure.” “I would especially like to thank our Dragon friends in making this all possible. Without their help and friendship, all of what has been accomplished here would still be weeks, even months, away.” Eddie, Lisa, David and Judy are now sworn in as graduates of the Ragnarok Marine Corp. “You have done well to make it to this elite group,” Coronal Powell tells them. “Your assignment for the next couple of days, go out there and explore the southern wilderness of Ragnarok. Watch out for any unknown danger when you go to check out those unknown areas of this Ark. File a report when you get back from your exploration.” There is a standing O for the four new recruits. Then, they are off preparing their supplies for a four day mission of independent exploration. “Flame and Torch want to take us back out exploring,” Jenny tells Captain Powell. “Go ahead,” Captain Powell tells them. “Just be careful out there.” “We’ll be back by nightfall,” answers Jenny. “It sure is wonderful that those two dragons have taken such a liking to those two young ladies,” Major Powell tells her husband. “It’s going to help them get adjusted to being back in civilization again.” “It’s good for those dragons as well,” answers Coronal Powell. “They will soon be bonded in friendship with each other much like Eddie and David are.” An exploration of the Murder Snow has been planned for the day. Cleo and Private Ledfoot have prepared for the trip by crafting extra heavy fur armor under the supervision of Joe and their frost dragon friend Sandy. “It can get dangerously cold up there especially during a storm,” she warns Cleo. “Does the extreme cold affect you?” ask Cleo. “No, It doesn’t affect us frost dragons.” answers Sandy. “But, it can freeze a human to death in minutes. When we were fighting the Vikings over a year ago, I captured one of them by paralyzing his horse with my freeze attack, then grabbing him off of his horse with my foot. He decided that he had better hang on while I was flying over the Volcano. But then, he froze to death in less them a minute when I flew into the Murder Snow with him.” “If it gets too cold for us, we will let you know,” Private Ledfoot tells Sandy. As they fly up towards the glacier, Private Ledfoot spots a cave in the glacier itself. “Is there anything inside there?” he ask Sammy. “You don’t want to go in there,” Sammy tells him. “It is home to the Ice Worm Queen. She is bigger and deadlier then those Death Worms everyone is scared of.” “Better put on your fur armor. It is going to get bitter cold soon.” “Wow! You are correct about this being called the Murder Snow,” Cleo tells Sandy. “How can it be so nice just a short distance away, yet, I am already measuring a temperature of 60 below zero on the thermometer?” “How are you handling this cold?” ask Sandy. “We’re doing all right,” Cleo answers. “The fur armor is doing its job of keeping us warm. I’m surprised that anything can live in such bitter cold conditions down there. Who are the two other frost dragons down by the edge of the frozen pine forest?” “Those are Snowball and Freezer,” answers Sandy. “I’ll land and introduce them to you.” “There are Vikings on you!” Freezer shouts in alarm as Sandy land by them.” “It’s OK,” Sandy answers back. “These are our friends. They come from that destroyed Ark we saw hitting the Earth several days ago.” “You’re right,” Freezer says as he comes up so Cleo can pet him without a glove on her hand. “You are not those Vikings I saw yesterday when I was out hunting for Troodons. They have a fortress built in the Southern Badlands in an inlet by the archway canyon.” “We thought that all of the Vikings had been killed off some time ago,” answers Private Ledfoot. “Tammy never mentioned to us that they were still living on this Ark.” “That’s because everybody though that they had been defeated years ago in our final showdown until I saw their new fortress.” answers Freezer. “Then, they must have escaped or were reborn,” answers Cleo. “That is bad news. I have seen what Eric Bloodaxe did to Tammy and Tarmac’s mate. He has been equally brutal to other humans as well.” “Oh no!” warns Private Ledfoot in alarm. “Jenny and Silvia could be heading into harms way if Flame and Torch don’t know that those Vikings are still out there. They were planning on flying into the southern canyons to explore them. We better get back and warn them before they leave. Would you come back with us so you can alert your other dragon friends about them?” “Yes,” Snowball answers. “We’ll follow you back to your village.” “We may already be too late to warn Flame and Torch,” a concerned Cleo answers back. “They were preparing to leave when we left to come explore out here.” Flying back to the village. Captain Powell comes out to meet them with Tammy and Mayor. “We must go finish them off now!” Tammy answers in anger when she hears that the vikings are still on Ragnarok. “No!” both Captain Powell and Mayor tells her sternly. “If you go flying in to attack them not knowing what kind of defenses they have placed in their fortress, you risk getting yourselves killed. Daryl and Darlene learned that the hard way when they tried to take out Rockwell on the Aberration Ark. It is only with knowing what they have for defenses is it possible to plan an attack on them without getting yourselves killed. Freezer, show us on this map where you saw their fortress and we will send over a recon team of Marines on Rock Drakes in stealth mode to see what we are up against.” “They’re right,” Helena tells Tammy. “We lost all of our men to Rockwell when they attacked him so we could escape to here. He had done something to their implants that prevented them from being reborn.” “Daryl and Darlene only survived because I was able to get them out of Rockwell’s Lair before he could kill them.” answers Lt. Jerry. “Then, he wipe us out with a weapon that left us paralyzed and defenseless. It was with training and the knowledge of what Rockwell’s Lair was like that we were finally able to defeat him without losing anyone in the battle. Let us take the Rock Drakes over there to do a stealth recon to see what we are up against before we go do anything to them.” “You don’t want to go in blindly attacking them.” Sleeper tells Tammy. “We saw them kill Watson and Volt with iron arrows from those giant crossbow turrets they now have when we found and attacked their base a month ago in the Southern Canyon.” “You knew those Vikings were still there and didn’t tell me about it?” scolds Tammy. “We didn’t want to see any more of us get killed by those crossbow turrets,” answers Slumber. “It was awful watching Watson and Volt screaming in pain as they were dying with those arrows impaled into their chest. We decided that if we didn’t tell anyone, they wouldn’t try to attack their fortress and be killed by those awful things.” “I guess that you’re right,” answers Tammy in disappointment. “I don’t want to lose any more of us to that Eric monster and his Viking horde.” “We better give Jenny a call on the radio and warn them to stay out of the Southern Canyon.” Captain Powell answers. “Oh $hit!” warns Joe. “They didn’t take a radio with them.” “Call Eddie,” orders Captain Powell. “Warn them about the location of that Viking fortress and tell them to be on the lookout for our sightseers.” The call is made after a bit of trouble in establishing communications. “We had to get up on top of a plateau in order to get a good signal,” Eddie reports. “We are in an area that borders the vast desert with the badlands. There is an abandoned settlement along the river that separates the two areas. We were just about ready to go check it out when you called.” “That is scary that Eric Bloodaxe and his Viking Hoard are still around,” reports Lisa. “We’ll be extra careful before we go down into the badlands area.” “Have you seen Jenny and Silvia on Flame and Torch?” ask Captain Powell. “No,” answers Eddie. “We could try calling them on the radio from here.” “They forgot to take one on their trip,” Captain Powell answers back. “Oh Crap!” Eddie answers back. “We’re going to have to go looking for them. We’ll try to stay high on the buttes so we can get a good view of the area. We may not be able to reach the islands in the west unless we can find a high enough peak close to the shore to glide over there.” “Just stick to the mainland,” Captain Powell orders Eddie. “I don’t want you four to end up swimming in a shark infested sea. We’ll send Barbara and Masucci out on Sleeper and Slumber to check out the western islands for you.” “What are we going to do if Eric has captured them?” Lisa ask Eddie after he has completed his call on the radio. “We go into stealth mode to case the joint,” answers Eddie. “Then, we get back to a high point and radio back for more instructions.” Meanwhile, Jenny and Barbara have been having a great time on Flame and Torch who have been enjoying taking them for the ride. “These canyons are fun to fly through,” Torch tells Flame. “Lets fly under the arches,” Flame tells Torch. “This is great fun,” Jenny tells the dragons as they head to fly under another arch where a bay shows on the other side. “Are those Viking Longboats in the bay?” Barbara asks Jenny in alarm. “Flame, Look out! There’s a net in our way!” Spotting it, the two dragons pull sharply up but the stone arch prevents them from climbing over it. They bank hard, but are going too fast to prevent them from slamming into the cargo net feet first. There is a loud squawk of panic from both dragons who promptly get tangled up in the hanging cargo net which gets pulled loose and goes crashing to the ground below. Jenny and Barbara are hanging on for dear life as they are screaming at the two dragons to stop struggling in the net. Several gas bombs are dropped from above which soon render the foursome unconscious. “What luck!” Eric’s head commander tells his men as he goes down to inspect their quarry. “We captured two young ladies and their fire dragon tames. Let get them secured in the cages before they wake up.”
  13. Chapter 32. Our Ragnarok Home. During the morning work session, the South Wall has finally been completed with watch towers. Sheds have been built for the rock drakes where they can seek shelter should the weather be like it was the night before. With the village completed, a survey crew has been sent out to check out the feasibility of fencing in pasture and farm land in the Scottish Highlands. “If we have to, we can fence in a large grassy area for the sheep in their highlands pasture,” reports Sargent Thomas to Helena and Captain Powell. “It’s just that most everything is going to have to be hauled in for the construction given that the area is lacking in wood, fiber, and especially, stone that the doeds can break up.” “I recommend that we have teams craft up stone walls in areas where those materials are readily available, then transport them by raft to an outpost where Cleo saw those dead whales.” answers Sargent Pasenna. “From there, they can be transported overland into the highlands.” “Just so long as we can stay upwind of those beached whales,” answers Helena. “Otherwise, we better find a way to get rid of them.” “The Stony Isles have lots of stone available along with plenty of driftwood.” Helena tells them. “We’ll just need to bring the fiber with us for crafting the wall sections of the fence.” A work crew gets prepped up with extra fiber and sets sail to the Stony Islands where they spend the rest of the day crafting up wall sections. During this time, the village is paid a visit by the Ragnarok Dragons which have gained several more to their numbers. Nothing else gets done that day as everyone goes out to give them some attention especially to the newcomers that are so astonished to find that humans are not so bad after all. Helena has asked Tammy if some of her friends would be willing to become friends with the four people that have been under Major Powell’s care for PTSS. All of the newcomers are interested in getting involved. Jenny and Silvia quickly take an interest in Flame and Torch. Barbara and Masucci are fascinated by the looks of Sleeper and Slumber and are soon off with them enjoying each other’s company. Eddie and Lisa have been out flying on their two lightnings friends Electra and Tesla when they come back with some alarming news. “There is a high level Giga tearing up the sheep flock in the Highlands.” They are quickly followed back by Barbara, Jenny, Silvia, and Masucci on their dragon friends. “I guess now is as good a time as ever to try some tactics to take it out,” Captain Powers responds. “Are you dragons willing to learn some combat tactics to kill a Giga?” “Yes,” Tammy and the rest of the dragons answers back. “Mayor and Margaret, go get your flight crew and have them armed themselves with rockets. Eddie and Lisa, you’re with us on your lightning friends. Jenny ans Silvia on your fire friends, Barbara and Masucci on your poisons. I need volunteers to fly on two ice ones. Helena and I will fly on Tammy and Tarmac to supervise and provide backup if needed.” “We’ll do it,” both Terrie and Tina volunteer. When everyone has been assembled, Captain Powell lays out the combat plans. “We’ll fly out to our target in formation with our mated pairs of dragons. I want the poison pair of Barbara and Masucci in the lead followed by Jenny and Silvia on the fire dragons, then Eddie and Lisa on their Lightning friends followed by the ice dragon team. Mayor and Margaret will be on the ground acting as bait to keep the Giga out into the open.” “Mayor, Margaret, don’t get too close to that thing, it could easily kill you in one bite. Just tease it to get it out into the open. Have your crew use their range weapons to torment it into chasing you.” “When the Giga is out in the open, I want the poison team to hit it in the face with their poison attack. That should slow it down enough for the fire team to set it on fire. Then, the lightnings can come in to paralyze it with their lightning attack. Finally, I want the ice dragon team to freeze its head at which time a rocket or two to it’s frozen head should kill it.” “Does everybody understand their role in this attack plan?” “Yes, everyone responds. “Good, lets go kill that thing.” It doesn’t take long for the eight dragons to line up in formation with their crews as Mayor and Margaret start heading out to the Highlands. “It’s out in the open near the Spire Point,” Sargent Pasenna radios back as the dragon flight takes off to make their attack run. “Good,” Captain Powell radios back. “Keep it busy. We will be there shortly.” “I hope this works with all of those rookies doing such an important combat jobs for their first time,” Captain Powell thinks to himself. Rocky and Lady Rocky have perched themselves high up on a spire, well out of reach of the enraged Giga, its eyes glowing in anger, as it tries to climb up to get them. It is with a roar of surprise when it gets two poison balls in it’s face. Choking from the gas as it staggers away in it’s attempt to reach the safety of the Redwood Forest, it gets set on fire, then paralyzed by a combined four second burst of high voltage lightning. Sandy and Sammy come in close hovering next to it as they unload with their freeze attack to the Giga’s head. Still on fire, but with it’s head now frozen, it gets killed with the first salvo of rockets and crashes to the ground as pieces of it’s head go flying everywhere. “We have never been able to kill one before, especially a Level 185 Giga,” Tammy tells Helena and Captain Powell as they land next to it. “Good job everyone,” Captain Powell praises them. “That’s what one can do with tactics and their combined forces. By hitting it with different types of attacks in a row, that Giga was unable to respond to defending against any of them. As Daryl would say, we sank it. Dragons, be sure that you get your share of raw and prime meat off of it. We’ll take the hide and any tools it may have collected from past attacks.” “Level ups? What are those for?” Tesla asks Eddie. “We all got ten of them for killing that Giga.” “Welcome into our tribe,” answers Helena. “Lets us show you how those level ups work.” “That felt so wonderful,” Tarmac responds as he gets leveled up in four different areas of abilities. “I never knew there was such a thing.” “Being our friends is probably why that ability has become available as a reward to you,” answers Captain Powell. “We are limited to a level 110. I’m not sure how far you, or our tames can go, but there will be a limit that will eventually be reached.” “Anytime you are threatened by something as nasty as a Giga, come to see us. We will be more then willing to help you out.” “We can keep an eye on the wild sheep for you,” Tammy tells Helena. “We prefer to feed on the predators that keep going after them.” “Doesn’t that mean that you will have to leave your homes in the northern badlands to defend the sheep?” ask Helena. “No,” answers Tammy. “Most of us are moving back into the World Scar so we can build our nest in there to raise our young.” “That would be so wonderful,” answers Captain Powell. “Our Rock Drake friends were so happy when they were able to raise youngsters on their own for the first time in their memory. Enjoy your young ones when they hatch. They will grow up so fast to become adults.” “That will save us a lot of construction if they hunt the predators for us,” reports Sargent Thomas. “We now only need to fence in the gardens to keep the herbivores from eating our crops.” It is evening when the work crew gets back and gets the word that only fencing will be needed in the garden areas. The four dragons that volunteered to make friends with the four humans being treated for PTSS have been hanging out with their new human friends since the battle to kill the Giga. “It’s been so wonderful to be getting all of this attention instead of being hunted for trophies,” Torch says to Sylvia. “I never knew that humans could be so cruel to each other,” Flame tells Jenny after she hears her story of being a slave of Crazy Harry. “You have been such a great friend to be with,” Barbara tells Sleeper. “I can’t believe that my childhood fantasy has become true,” Masucci tells Slumber. “This has been so totally unexpected,” Slumber answers. “I really like you.” “You and your friends did great in taking out that Giga,” Mascutti tells him. “I’m so glad that we have had the opportunity to become friends with you.” “At least this world has gotten off to a good start after we were forced to leave ours,” Jenny tells Flame as she is petting her on the forehead. “Our rescuers have been most understanding of what we have been through. But, most of all, you dragons have been willing to become our friends in spite of how you were treated in the past by other humans. That is the most remarkable thing of all.” “Seeing the wild Rock Drakes and their young working with your tribe is what gave us the confidence that you humans had to be different.” answers Torch. “I’m so glad that Tammy took the chance of becoming friends with you especially after learning how quickly your tribe was able to stop an attack by Electra and Tesla without harming them. I can see us having some most interesting experiences in the future.” “I do too,” answers Jenny. “Like you, we will start raising our families here on Ragnarok. Perhaps, in the future when Earth has recovered from the damage done by Aberration colliding into it, our children may return to repopulate it. Hopefully, your children will join us to live in peace together.” It is the following morning when Barbara, Jenny, Sylvia, and Masucci ask permission to go exploring on their new dragon friends. “Be sure that you take desert armor and canteens with you if you decide to go into the southern regions,” Coronal Powell tells them. “Helena says that it can be quite hot in that area. Don’t stray too far from your dragon friends as it can be quite dangerous out there. Give us a report of what you have discovered when you come back.” Helena and her crew head out on the rafts to sail to a place between the volcano and an old lighthouse. They find a path by a stream that will take them up to the farm fields where they can fence them off for crop farming. Tammy and several of her dragons friends head out with them to scout the area. Using the tactics that they observed used to take out the Giga, they quickly get rid of a pack of Allos that are in the area chasing after the wild horses living there. “Thank you for getting rid of those predators,” Helena tells Tammy. “We can use the horses to transport the fencing to the farming fields.” “They were quite tasty,” Tammy answers. “We found these items on them after we had killed them.” “Those will be most useful,” Helena tells her as she checks out the blueprints, high level tools, and crafting recipes. “We’ll tame up these horses, then start using them to haul up fencing to the fields.” It is a short while later when Cleo comes riding back on an unusual looking white horse she has tamed with rockarrots from the stream nearby. “Is that a Unicorn?” ask Helena. “Apparently, they do exist,” answers Cleo. “He just tamed up like any of the other horses out there. I was concerned that my quality time I had spent with Private Ledfoot would have prevented me from taming him. That rule must not apply on Ragnarok for taming a unicorn.” “Other then the horn on his head, he looks like all the other horses I have seen out here,” answers Helena. “Lets get to work hauling up the fencing for the first farming plots.” With the help of the horses, all the farming plots are soon fenced in. An outpost and barn is also constructed for the purpose of staying overnight and storage of harvested crops. With a load of harvested crops that have been found growing wild in the fields, the expedition loads their raft, along with the horses and sail back to the village. “What an unusual find,” Major Powell tells Helena as she examines the unicorn. “As you suspected, he is no different then the other horses except for the horn and the fact that he can’t breed with them due to the differences in his DNA structure. Like the dragons, bulb pups, the shine horns, and other unusual creatures here, he has to be totally artificially created. It’s possible we may find a mare for him during our future exploration of the highlands.” Barbara and Masucci come flying back on their dragon friends to file their report on what they have seen out there. “We have found some interesting ruins and an abandoned dock in the giant swamps to the South West of here beyond the giant canyon,” Masucci reports. “It is an area that you certainly don’t want to explore on foot or by a raft without a dragon escort. It’s just crawling with giant boa constrictor snakes, huge centipedes, scorpions, and several species of alligators. I don’t know how the smaller herbivores can even survive in that death trap. They are constantly running away from the predators. At least the islands beyond the swamp were much drier and safer.” “Here comes Torch and Flame back from their exploration. Where’s Jenny and Silvia?” Captain Powell ask them. “They are flying back on a most unusual creature that they found near the big canyon,” Torch answers. “It may take them a while to get here. It flies a lot slower then we do.” “Major Powell,” reports Sargent Pasenna as he puts a spotting scope on a bird like creature with two riders. “You are not going to believe what those two are flying on.” “A winged creature with an eagle’s head with front claws, yet, with a lion’s back end?” questions Major Powell. “Impossible, there is no such thing as a Griffin.” “No one ever heard of real dragons either until flight 19 showed up back on Earth with their Rock Drake friends.” answers Coronal Powell. “Where did you find such an unusual creature?” ask Captain Powell as the two ladies land with the Griffin. “It was up in the big canyon,” answers Silvia. “Let me get a DNA swab of this creature before I run out of test strips,” ask Major Powell. “Well, what did you find out there?” ask Captain Powell. “We had quite a good time on Flame and Torch,” reports Jenny. “We found a temple on an island that was safe for us to explore. It had a stairway inside that went from the top of the hill to the sea below. There was also an abandoned terrace nearby. We saw nothing dangerous living on that island. We also found more of those silk flowers growing in the landscaped terrace and brought some silk back with us.” “Inland, we found a most unusual temple built into a waterfalls. It was called the Patron’s Temple. Most interesting among the statues and carvings were the names inscribed on the wall. All of our names were there along with hundreds of others. Some of them I recognize were of those that vanished without a trace in the Bermuda Triangle long ago.” “That is most interesting,” answers Captain Powell. “Here is the DNA report from the Griffin,” announces Major Powell. “It is definitely a genetically created hybrid given that there is no possible way such a creature could have been bred naturally, or artificially. I am unable to classify this creature as either male or female, the genetic markers are not there and the biological scans do not show any sexual organs at all. It confirms my theory that some extraterrestrials have created this place along with all of the creatures living here. This Griffin had to have been placed here by them. There is no other explanation for its existence or its docile behavior around us as a tame.” “Who knows what other surprises wait for us as we continue exploring this strange place,” comments Coronal Powell. “This Ark gets stranger here all of the time.” “We may find out when we can resume a detailed exploration of this place to learn all of its secrets, how they all fit in to this lifeboat in space, and what it all means for our future.” answers Captain Powell.
  14. Chapter 31 Our New Home. “What remarkable creatures these flying dragons are,” Helena comments to Captain Powell at their evening meeting. “I’m glad that Eddie was able to establish a peaceful relationship with them,” answers Captain Powell. “Given the damage that Electra and Tesla did to the village, they would have been a formidable force to deal with in a coordinated attack.” “At least they were good sports about it once they learned that we were not their enemy,” responds Lisa. “Tammy was so remarkable,” answers Helena. “Eddie was so fortunate to get on her good side especially after knowing what Eric Bloodaxe had done to her first mate.” “In the morning, we need to enroll Eddie into the Marines.” answers Captain Powell. “We’ll start him out with some basic training and give him the discipline he has been lacking when he takes off on his own. Maybe enroll David into the corp as well so the both of them can stay out of trouble in the future.” “That sounds like a great idea,” Coronal Powell chimes in. “It’ll give both of them a purpose in this new society we are going to be creating on Ragnarok. In the morning, we draft Eddie and David into the Marine Corp.” “These Dragons are really interesting,” reports Major Powell as she discloses her examination results. “Technically, they are not true dragons in the sense that they would have four legs and wings. These dragons are classified as wyverns. While I can understand how the fire, lighting, and poisons are able to generate and deploy their attack weapons, I do not understand how Sandy and Sammy are able to use their freeze attack without being frozen by it themselves. It is as if they are spraying their target with some kind of freezing liquid.” “I’m thinking that they might be using liquefied carbon dioxide as their weapon,” answers Sargent Root. “That can be stored as a liquid under pressure at room temperature. When that pressure is released as it is sprayed on something it instantly freezes whatever it touches.” “That would seem biologically logical,” answers Major Powell. “I could easily test for that the next time that I see them.” “How have your sessions with Barbara, Jenny, Silvia and Masucci been coming along?” ask Captain Powell. “The ladies have been recovering quite well,” Major Powell reports. Barbara and EM Masucci have even started dating together. He has been kind and understanding about what she had gone through being Harry’s slave. Jenny and Silvia have been a bit more cautious about getting involved with anyone. I’m happy to say that your men have been understanding of what they have gone through. At least they are no longer frightened about what they had went through and are willing to share those unpleasant experiences with us and each other.” “The transfer through the portal and this Ark has reversed all signs of EM Masucci’s exposure to his smoking, drinking, and his bar maid chasing, the latter evidence by his behavior around Barbara. The damage the exposure to those powerful low frequency EMR had done to his body is slowly healing up. He is responding quite well to his PTSS. I believe that his involvement with Barbara has been good therapy for what the two of them went through.” “All four of them have taken an interest in our new dragon friends and would like to spend some time with them if they are willing to do so.” “I’ll ask Tammy when she and her dragon friends come back to visit us,” Helena answers in return. “We should consider setting up an outpost to shepherd the wild sheep up in the Scottish Highland rather then bringing them back here and confining them to the pens.” reports Joe. “They would be better off being wild and protected from predators then being confined where we would have to constantly gather food for them. Cleo has told me that they can be easily captured and restrained for sheering as needed.” “That would work out well,” answers Sargent Thomas. “We could periodically send patrols along their borders to eliminate any predator threat in their grazing land. The Rock Drakes and Dragons can then feed on the nearby predators to keep them under control. We can also establish an overnight outpost to keep watch on them on a rotating basis and leave some tamed horses out there as well.” “There is also some abandoned cropland in the same area with good soil,” reports Cleo. “With some fencing to keep the grazing animals out and an application of fertilizer, which we can easily create using compost bins, we could be growing Savroot, Rockarrots, and other crops for our use.” “When we get the village completed, we can look into starting the two farming projects in the Highlands,” answers Captain Powell. “It’s been a long and interesting day. I’m turning in for the night. Everyone will get an assignment in the morning after we officially draft Eddie and David into the Marine Corp.” It is the following morning after breakfast that Captain Powell announces that he is drafting Eddie and David into the Marine Corp. On Helena’s suggestion, Lisa and Judy are also drafted. Sargent Gulliver has been assigned the training duty. It is quite an interesting morning for those four as the two teens are dressed in army fatigues with the rock drakes wearing a makeshift sash on their neck. Sargent Gulliver starts their training by putting them through some marching drills, some PT exercises, and gives them some history about the old Marine Air Corp of the 40s and its role in WW2. Lisa is questioning the role of women in the Corp until Coronal Powell pays them a visit to explain how things have changed since the 40s. He tells them the history of the corp since the 40s up until the present. The two rock drakes have found it interesting doing the PT and marching drills. The afternoon is spent with target training while riding on the rock drakes using crossbows with blunt arrows on targets. Lady Rocky is along with Sargent Gulliver to show them some of the tactics they used when training to attack Rockwell. Similar to what happened when Daryl and Darlene first developed the tactic, there are a couple of mid air collisions until the two young rock drakes have figured it out. As soon as the tactic has been learned, it is live fire with the crossbows on straw targets. Having used them before Eddie is quick to pick up on using the crossbow on both stationary and moving targets while riding. Lisa take a bit longer as she has not trained on the use of those weapons while riding. They both finish up the early afternoon with target practice while riding, then gliding on their rock drake friends. They are then given the rest of the day off with a notice that they will all be pulling guard duty during the night. “How is it going,” Captain Powell ask Sargent Gulliver. “They are progressing quite well,” Sargent Gulliver answers. “Our new recruits will become Marines in no time.” “We’ll we will see if they can stay out of trouble when on guard duty tonight.” answers Captain Powell. “I’d would love to test them in actual air to ground combat when Electra and Tesla come back to visit. It would make taking down a T-Rex much safer if we can use their lightning attack on one in addition to our ranged weapons.” “I’ll have to see of our dragon friends are willing to cooperate in such an experiment when they do return,” answers Helena. “It would give us the chance to test out their offensive abilities and fine tune them to maximum effectiveness for both of our benefits.” “I saw some really dangerous creatures out there on my survey flight on Tammy that she told me they are very afraid of. There is a gigantic mountain of a sauropod that could smash this village flat with ease. Fortunately, it is a herbivore so is normally not a threat unless provoked. However, she says that they are extremely stupid. She saw one walk off into the water and drown. It swam like a rock. If we are ever attacked by one, all we have to do is to taunt it into following us into the water where it will drown” “The two they fear the most are the Giga and the Death Worms of the desert. “The Giga is three times the size of the Rex and is a killing machine that kills just for the fun of it. It is also capable of smashing stone walls and structures. She says that they are very difficult to kill. I was able to tame one of those demons in the past, but found it to have a Jeckle and Hyde personality. I lost several very good tames to that devil, including my favorite raptor, when he went rogue on me forcing me to kill it.” “Tammy says the Death Worms are the worst of all. Living strictly in the Dune Desert of the South West, they travel under the sand dunes and can strike without warning. They attack by suddenly appearing from under the sand and will pull their prey under to eat it. She has even seen an Alpha Death Worm take out a Giga.” “The Death Worms should not be an issue so long as they live in the sand dunes and we stay out of there,” announces Captain Powell. “Since the Gigas can show up around here, we should develop some tactics for taking them down safely, both with the rock drakes and with our new dragon friends.” “This is what I want to do with Eddie and Lisa as they continue their training. I want them to develop the tactics on their rock drake friends, then work with Electra and Tesla on aerial combat for safely taking out an attacking Giga, especially if it is a high level one.” That sounds like a good tactic,” answers Helena. During the day, a great deal of work has been done on the new village. The temporary storage sheds have been upgraded with stone ones. A pair of Doeds were tamed up and have been most useful in mining stone for the structures. A common building has been constructed with wood. Housing units have been laid out and completed for everyone. Work has started on a barn for the Rock Drakes and a perimeter wall to secure the village from any carnivore threats given that saber tooths have been discovered high up on the plateau. “We have made good progress,” reports Captain Powell during the evening meeting. “Tomorrow we can send a group over to the Highlands to survey construction of an outpost and fencing for pasture for the sheep. In the meantime, our marine recruits have guard duty tonight. Their job, keep watch on the southern perimeter of our village.” “That means no necking among the four of you, or sleeping on guard duty, when you are all out there alone. One of us WILL be checking on you at random during the night.” “Oh darn,” the four of them think silently to themselves. Captain Powell escorts them out to their assigned location on the south side of the village. The wall is only partially finished there so needs to be watched in case any larger predators or herbivores show up to try to get in. “You four have watch of this area for the night. Work in teams of two, a human and a rock drake on each team so you can keep each other awake. If you spot trouble, call us on the radio. You two can use these night vision goggles if it gets extremely dark. Even though your rock drakes partners can see in infrared, they may not be able to spot some of the cold blooded predators out there if a storm rolls in during the night. That is why I am having you work in teams of two with the night vision goggles.” Eddie and David are assigned next to the jungle area as Lisa and Judy take watch near the bay. They are not the only patrols out as the Marines and Helena’s tribe also pull rotating watch. While it is far less dangerous on Ragnarok, given that the dragons are now their friends, there is always the threat of large predators that can include an Allasaur pack or a T-Rex. “Such a peaceful night,” Helena tells Captain Powell. “I’m sure it is not always like this,” answers Captain Powell. “Aberration certainly was not.” “And, from my survey flight on Tammy, this place can be quite dangerous as well,” answers Helena. “Hopefully, our lovebirds will stay out of trouble,” captain Powell responds back. That night becomes far from typical as a storm rolls in from the sea. The rain and cold is making it miserable for the rock drakes and the two people on guard duty. It becomes so dark when the fog rolls in that even the night vision scopes are barely functioning. “I can’t see anything out there,” Eddie tells David. “It’s totally pitch black out.” “I can’t see anything either,” David tells him. “I can see where you are in infrared but I can’t see nothing else out there in this miserable weather.” Captain Powell comes out to see them with Private Grobbal and Ledfoot bringing them out ponchos for protection from the weather. “What a miserable night,” he tells them. “I had some oversize ponchos made for your Rock Drake friends to help keep them dry.” “That helps a lot,” David tells them as they place the poncho over his wet and cold leathery reptile body. The weather remains miserable for the next couple of hours, then clears to reveal a moonlit sky. “That is so much better,” Eddie tells David. It has been quite a night even though nothing dangerous has shown up. By dawn, Captain Powell releases the guard duty so they can go get breakfast, clean up, and get some sleep before being placed back in training. It isn’t long before the four of them, the two recruits and their rock drake friends, are found sound asleep in a pile of straw in a barn inside the new village.
  15. Chapter 30. We are attacked. With Helena and Cleo out exploring Ragnarok, the construction on the village continues on. About half of the supplies have been moved the past couple of days into temporary sheds. “We should have the move completed by tomorrow evening,” Sargent Pasenna tells his crew. Eddie and David have gone back up to the butte to continue to watch for Dragons given that no one knows how many more are out there or if they have been given the word that the latest visitors to Ragnarok are not a threat to them. Before leaving, Tammy has told Captain Powell that she would be looking for the other Ragnarok Dragons to spread the word that they are not the vikings. “Yesterday was so interesting,” Eddie tells David. “You were so brave in your effort to protect us.” “I was scared out of my wits,” answers David. “I now realize that Tammy could have beaten the crap out of me if she had wanted to.” “That’s all right David,” Eddie tells him. “The important thing is that they are now our friends.” Judy soon climbs up on the butte with a stranger riding on her. “What a surprise,” answers Eddie. “Who’s your friend that you brought with you?” “I’m Lisa,” the young lady answers. “I want to know more about how you and Cleo became such good friends with the wild dragons.” “It was scary at first,” admits Eddie. “But, it was great flying on Tammy. We were soaring high in the clouds above. You could see for miles from high up in the sky.” “Wow,” answers Lisa. “Do you think that there are more of them out there?” “I’m pretty sure there are,” answers Eddie. “Helena will probably find them as she rides on Tammy to go exploring Ragnarok.” “I sure hope so,” answers Lisa. “Before the force field failed on Aberration and ended up killing them, they looked like they were such good flying mounts.” “That is such a crying shame,” answers Eddie. “Tammy was so enjoyable to fly on. At least the rock drakes made it out of there alive with their eggs. I’m interested to see what this world will look like once the village is finished and we can go exploring again.” “Me too,” answers Lisa. “Oh, oh! I see two purplish dragons flying straight towards the village. They don’t look friendly in the spotting scope.” “You have incoming,” warns Eddie as he radios Captain Powell from the butte. “I don’t know what kind of dragons they are. They are heading straight towards you in attack mode.” Both Eddie, Lisa, and the two rock drakes watch in horror as both dragons unleashes lightning bolts that blast apart two of the housing units, then sets them on fire. “Tranc darts!” orders Captain Powell as his men drop what they are doing and form up behind another housing unit. The second dragon is circling around aiming for one of the supply barns when it gets 10 darts to its neck. With a squawk of surprise, it hits the ground unconscious sliding into the barn demolishing it and scattering the supplies everywhere. As the first dragon circles around to attack again, it suddenly hesitates when he sees his mate fall out of the sky into the supply shed. Coming in to land, he finds himself upside down, pinned to the ground, when an angry Mayor and Rocky body slam him from above and start hissing in his face. “Hog tie that female before she wakes up,” orders Captain Powell. “I don’t want to be forced into killing either one of them.” “Can we get a hold of Helena on the radio?” ask Sargent Thomas. “Never mind, here she comes now,” as Captain Powell spots the white alpha dragon coming in fast with a rider on her. “I’m sorry, I’m sorry,” the male lightning dragon is now telling Mayor as two more rock drakes pile on top of him, pinning his wings to the ground along with his neck and tail. Tammy lands close by and heads directly over to the pinned male. “Why did you attack this village,” she ask him in an angry voice. “I thought they were the vikings,” the frightened male whimpers back. “Well, they are not!” Tammy tells him sternly. “And, I expect you to apologize to these humans and their rock drake friends when they finally decide to let you get back up.” “Anybody hurt?” ask Helena as she gets off of Tammy. “No, Eddie warned us just in time that they were coming in on attack mode,” answers Captain Powell. “What about the other lightning dragon?” ask Helena. “She’s out cold,” answers Captain Powell “The tranc darts did their job of safely dropping her out of the sky.” Eddie and Lisa are now back with their drake friends to find out what has happened. “Anyone hurt? He asks. “No,” answers Sargent Thomas. “Only these three building were destroyed. They can easily be replaced.” “What kind of dragons are these?” ask Lisa. “They are lightning dragons,” answers Helena. “Like a bolt of lightning from a storm, they can do a lot of damage to whatever their electrical discharge hit.” “Mayor, Rocky, Lady Rocky, Margaret, let him get back up,” orders Captain Powell. “I think that he has learned his lesson about blindly attacking something without knowing what he is getting himself into.” The four drakes step back off the still shaking lightning dragon who then gets back up and continues apologizing to everyone. “Come on over to your mate,” orders Helena. “She is going to be scared out of her wits once she wakes up from the effects of those tranc darts.” Lisa has gone over by the female, stroking her on the forehead as she starts coming to. “Oh, my head,” the female says as she opens her eyes to look at Lisa with her mate standing right behind her. “What happened?” “We made the mistake of attacking these humans,” answers the male. “They knocked you out with tranc darts. I had four wild rock drakes tackle me from above and pin me to the ground. They are all friends of these humans including Tammy and Tarmac.” “Don’t try to get up until the effects of the tranc darts wears off and I have untied you,” orders Lisa as Captain Powell gives her permission to untie the restraints on her legs. “Do you two have names?” ask Helena. “I’m Electra,” answers the female as the trancs continue to wear off. “My mate is Tesla.” “You can go ahead and get back up,” Lisa tells her as she finishes removing the ropes that were securing her legs together. “Just take it easy for a while until you are feeling better. “Here comes five more dragons,” warns Sargent Pasenna. “Two of them are green in color.” “Stay with these two,” Helena orders Lisa. “The Ragnarok Dragons are starting to find out where we are.” “We’re safe,” reports Captain Powell as he places the spotting scope on the leader. “Cleo is escorting them in on Tarmac.” Helena and Tammy go over to them, along with the two newcomers and the four rock drakes, as the five land outside of the village to talk. “Tesla, what happened to you?” ask the poison male “You look like you went through hell.” “I made the mistake of attacking this village,” answers Tesla. “These rock drakes knocked me out of the sky.” “You are lucky to be alive,” answers the poison male. “I lost two of my friends when we attacked that Viking village down in the southern canyon. They got impaled with large iron arrows shot at them when they flew in to attack.” “I know,” answers Tesla. “These humans dropped Electra out of the sky with something they called tranc darts before their rock drake friends tackle me from above. They could have so easily killed the both of us but they didn’t.” “We know what the vikings had done to your kind,” answers Helena. “We have seen their handiwork over in their war room. No one here wants to harm you. Can we declare your attack on us as a misunderstanding and become friends?” “Yes” answers Tesla. “Can I ask you a question? Where did you find wild rock drakes to have as your friends? I’ve never seen them before on Ragnarok.” “They come from the Aberration Ark,” answers Helena. “They ask Captain Powell for his help to escape from there. Then, they came here with them when the Earth was destroyed by the Aberration Ark crashing into it.” “That is most interesting. What can we do to help you to repair the damage?” ask Tesla. “Can you help ferry supplies for us from the Blue Obelisk to here?” ask Captain Powell. “We can do that,” all the dragons answer back. “Thank you,” Captain Powell tells them. “I’ll radio over to Joe to tell him that additional help is on the way.” “I’d like to ride over there on Electra if she will let me,” ask Lisa. “I’ll let you ride on me,” Electra tells Lisa. “Go ahead,” Helena tells her. “You always wanted to ride on a dragon over in Aberration. If she’s anything like Tammy, she will enjoy having you riding on her.” “Thank you so much,” Lisa answers back as she gets on her. “Helena is right,” Electra tells Lisa. “This is quite enjoyable.” “I’m so happy that you are enjoying this,” answers Lisa. “It will help us all become good friends.” “That’s great,” Joe answers on the radio when he gets the good news that the Ragnarok Dragons want to help move the supplies to the village. “We’ll rig up loads that they can carry using their feet. If this works out, we should have everything out of here by late afternoon.” “How much can they carry?” “Lets limit the loads to 300 pounds for now,” answers Captain Powell. “We’ll have the first ones ready to go when they arrive,” answers Joe. Lisa is the first one there on Electra as she guides her in to show the others how to pick up the sling of supplies for the return flight. The transfer process goes well as the six dragons start transferring the loads as if they were supply drones. They fly in over to each sling where Joe places the loop over the claw of the rear leg as they hover over it. Then, they are off to the village where they place the load by the shed that is being rebuilt. “This is really going well,” Joe tells his group. “Those dragons seem to be enjoying this.” By late afternoon, the last of the supplies are transferred with the heavier items being placed on the rafts sailing back to Viking Bay. “Can we hitch a ride?” Joe ask Lisa when she comes back. “Ask our new friends,” answers Lisa. As the dragons land, Joe, with the four crew members left, pick a dragon and get on them for a new adventure. “Thank you for your help,” Joe tells Tesla as he gets on him. “It was the least we could do to make up for accidentally attacking your village,” answers Tesla. They fly back to quite a sight as twenty more Ragnarok Dragons are seen in the new village with Helena and Cleo. “They had to come see for themselves,” reports Helena. “We even found a pair of frost ones up by the Murder Snow.” Everyone has gone out there to see them. The 20 newcomers are enjoying all of the unusual attention. “This is so wonderful,” Sandy tells Tammy. “I never knew that being around humans could be so enjoyable.” “It is such a welcome change from being hunted by them in the past,” answers Watson. Major Powell and Helena spend the next hour recording a record of each dragon for their research. The dragons agree to let them get a blood sample and DNA swab. The records includes the type, sex, name, and a brief history of any past encounters with humans on Ragnarok. “I now understand why they were living in the southern region,” reports Helena. “The area was too hot or rugged for the vikings that were living here to harass them.” “Tammy mentions of a barrier that used to exist similar to the force field that is out far to sea.” answers Helena. “She tells me that it kept the vikings away from them during the time they were being hunted by them. That is probably why we had only seen Tammy and Tarmac before finding the rest of them today.” “There is some really beautiful terrain on this Ark especially to the south. There are abandoned settlements over there that are not viking that we are going to need to explore in the future.” “The dragons are going to be leaving to go back to their homes for the night,” reports Cleo. “I told Tammy and Tarmac that they should go back with them to reestablish their friendships. They said that they will come back to see us in a couple of days.” “This has been a most productive day,” reports Captain Powell. “Our temporary housing should be complete in a day or two, then we can start on the permanent settlement, get our pasture area secure, and establish our farming area.”