by Barnabas Becze
Following in the footsteps of Branson and Musk, Man had assumed his rightful place in the heavens. Reaching out across the night sky, having established colonies on Mars, Ganymede, and Callisto while massive stations were under construction at Earth’s Lagrange points. All these projects were hungry for resources, yet the Earth below remains divided…
The Empire of Man has been gloriously established as a Neoreactionary government in the year of our lord, 2085, encompassing the North and South American continent now known as “Nova-Britannia”. Great resistance still persists through the “Pan African Union” and its far-left political regime, from which refugees flee to the overcrowded ruinous cities of Eurasia in the hundreds of millions. Sheltering over 7 billion souls, the PAU houses the vast majority of the world’s population with a tenth inhabiting the vast Lagos megopolis, now the world’s largest city. Democrats and communists at the helm continue to deploy their meat puppets overseas, humans with all higher mental functions stripped and bodily cavities packed with sufficient CL-20 to take out a dozens of civilians. Today, at 0200 local time, the 1st Royal Orbital Grenadiers will be dropped in Lagos from Man’s crowning achievement, the New Rhodesia, a Stanford Torus housing over ten-thousand of the Emperor’s finest.
The urban gulgas stretch on for miles throughout the Niger river to the slumlands surrounding the Kainji reservoir hydroelectric dam… the Imperium’s main target. At 0201 hours, 94 carefully-aimed tungsten mega capsules fell from the heavens at Mach 10 onto strategic targets across the Niger river metropolitan area. It offered the raid a light diversion, but Kainji city remains vigilant. Fortified with heavy SAM coverage and patrolled by the power-armored elite Red Guard, the city’s COIL ray defenses protect the reservoir from nuclear bombardment. The only option is an orbital drop. 1600 of his majesty’s bravest knights make the leap of faith at 150,000 feet for God and country, with only their ablative shields and stealth-suits protecting them from the 500 degree supersonic wind. Once inside the operating envelope of the Strela3, small charges in the shields burst and the Grenadiers spend the next 80,000 feet plummeting to their near certain deaths at terminal velocity.
As the lights from the slums of Lagos grow in brightness and definition, each knight steels himself. The communist-infested megapolis approaches. Just 500 feet from the ground, one-shot retro rockets built into each stealth-suit fire, rapidly halting their descents as they fall through. Half the knights are killed with AA weapons before even touching the surface. Once on the ground, each man checks his Lord’s Rifle Mk 2, an electrothermal-chemical smartgun. Fully auto and capable of firing flechettes at over 30,000 fps, the effects on flesh are spectacular.
The knights charging the complex are pinned down by Railgun fire, but not for long, as the first thermal round volley already begins to rip through the waves of red guardsmen like knives through butter. The knights, seeing a break in the action, regroup at the entrance of the Dam. It is here that the unit’s Grandmaster, Lord-Commander Hohenzollern, faces the 1st Royal Grenadiers and removes his helmet:
“The mission is simple, a classic raid: Penetrate the tunnel complex underneath the Kainji dam, plant a tactical ERW (a healthy radioactive upgrade to your standard low-yield suitcase charge), blow the structure, and flood every river in the Niger delta metropolitan area with radioactive water. You will detonate the neutron bomb once out of the min. risk estimate zone to avoid the thermonuclear shockwave. If the charge detonates before you can evacuate, then your cerro-diamondoid armor and breathing apparatus will temporarily protect you should you be swallowed by the irradiated tidal waves. Make sure your smartguns are charged and ready and watch for the mobile-suit mounted railguns, because from this point on the cross on your armor is all the protection you’ll get. The Kainji lake is the source of the entire megacity’s drinking water, with any luck, every communist in Lagos will get a nice healthy dose of nuke-water before the day’s end!”
The next wave of red guardsmen approach to block their escape. Thousands of battle cries, coupled with the hydraulics of the approaching mobile suits, sound in the distance. The Grenadiers turn to the Grandmaster for orders:
“Let’s blow this dam and make it quick, because a Paladin-class dropship Evac just made a de-orbit burn over the Sahara and its coming in hot! If you want to be on it, then I suggest you work to make your fires fast, flexible, and responsive. Find the gaps, avoid the hard points, and your tech will carry the day. Pray to Gnon as we bury some communists and democrats under a hundred million tons of irradiated cancer water. Make Victory your god and Death your constant friend, see you on the far side of the objective. Good luck, and don’t fuck it up…”