They quickly ran to the nearest vehicle and jumped inside. This time Felix sat up front with his cannon at the ready. They turned to the tunnel and raced away, soon they were underwater again.
They moved as quickly as possible but the water provided so much more resistance than the air. Ven was amazed when they made it back out the other side without incident.
She had thought for sure they’d have barricaded it.
But her heart sank when they rounded the last corner and she saw vehicles set up in front of them. “What do we do Felix?” She glanced at the robot.
“Ram your way through.” And with that he punched out the front window of the vehicle and opened fire on all the Arzat standing near the vehicles.
The things dove for cover as Ven pushed the pedal to the floor. Closer and closer they got to the barricade, she aimed for the gap between two vehicles.
There was a horrific thud and the sound of metal scraping on metal, as she plowed her way through the barricade.
She prayed that they would make it through, and let out a sigh of relief when they came out the other side. Their vehicle had taken a beating, but it was still moving.
They took off down the street as fast as they could go, three more buggies in close pursuit. “Felix, transfer everything you got to Sky Eye 2.”
“The transfer is already in progress.”
At least if they got killed they had managed to get the information out.
Two more bends and their vehicle started to clunk and smoke. “Shit.” Ven exclaimed.
They pushed it as far as they could, trying to get to the edge of the city while dodging Arzat traffic and being chased. Finally they realized the buggy wouldn’t make it.
“Sky Eye 2 is sending reinforcements.” Felix had been in communication with command. Almost as soon as he said it a building behind them exploded, obviously hit by a missile.
Thirty seconds later and Ven saw the armed quadrocopters coming from the sky. They were free falling to get there as fast as possible.
From behind them a missile was launched. It traveled upwards and Ven cringed as one of the quadrocopters exploded into an uncountable number of pieces.
The other two continued their free fall, engines kicking in at the last moment, one came skimming just over the top of the buggy, cannons firing at their pursuers.
The other touched down in the middle of the next intersection. Ven hit the brakes and yanked the buggy skidding to the left.
As soon as it stopped she and Felix were out the right side and running to the quadrocopter.
The one still flying had turned the odds to their favor, and suddenly the pursuers were running for cover.
Ven and Felix jumped on board the landed copter right as it lifted off the ground and took back to the sky.
They began to accelerate as quickly as the machine could, weaving side to side as missiles were launched from the ground. The second copter came following in close pursuit.
They had cleared the building tops and were now gaining altitude quickly, but the three missiles that had been launched were still gaining.
Felix leaned out the side of the copter, holding on with his left hand and aiming his right towards the missiles.
Boooooom! One exploded, quickly followed by another. There was one missile left but Felix wasn’t quick enough.
Seconds before the missile would have hit the other quadrocopter swerved between them and it. The explosion shook their craft and Ven winced at the loss of another pilot.
More missiles were launched but it was too late. They had gained enough altitude that the missiles couldn’t reach them.
A few minutes later and they were in the clear, making their way back to Sky Eye 2.
After a hot shower and a cup of black coffee Ven was on her way to a debriefing with Captain Yang and Admiral Entra via view screen. Felix was already there.
As soon as she walked in the room Captain Yang stood and saluted her. “Good job boss!”
Ven wasn’t interested in praise. “What about the pilots?”
Captain Yang responded. “They were two of my best. It’s a loss. Their families have been notified.” Ven looked to the ground, a tear started to well. Captain Yang stepped closer to her.
“CEO, the cache of data that Felix recovered was priceless. I’m sure that had they known they would have still volunteered for the mission.
Not only do we now know where Tirus’ is being held, but we also know the location of the Atlas.
Best of all Felix was able to leave their systems in such a manner that they’ll think our hack attempt was a failure. They have no idea what we know.
Their military technology, their protocols, it was a gold mine.”
“How did they hide the Atlas?” Ven had been wondering how the Sky Eye’s had been unable to find the ship.
“Ah,” the captain spoke up, “they have a technology that dampens the signatures we would normally pick up. And they also have holographic technology.
After they took the ship they set up a holographic projector. From the sky all we could see was more ocean.”
“What about Tirus? What did you find out about him?”
The admiral chose to answer that question. “He’s being held near the Atlas, in a cave complex.”
Ven was adept at sarcasm. “Oh great, underground again.”
“We have a different plan this time. Although I don’t think you’re going to like it.”
“Oh great.” Ven let out a sigh, “So what am I doing?”
The admiral paused for a moment. Ven could tell he didn’t want to say what he was about to say. “We know that Tirus is probably segregated. But Arzat prisons are usually labor camps.
Particularly mining. Some humans are killed, some are sent to the camps. If they know a human is some sort of officer they’ll keep them alive and torture them for information....”
“This is sounding better and better.” Ven chimed in.
The admiral paused for the briefest moment and then carried on.
“we’re unable to reach the commander through his ear bud most likely because he’s underground, but we suspect he’d be kept in isolation.
He’s far to valuable to be killed or let loose with the other inmates where he could organize a riot. You, on the other hand, would likely be assigned to the work crew.
As long as they didn’t uh,” the admiral cleared his through and Ven interrupted.
“As long as they don’t kill me.”
“Venuvia,” the admiral was the only one who ever called her that, “I cannot order you to do this mission.”
There was no hesitation in Ven’s voice, “what do I do once I’m in?”
The admiral spoke up, more confident now that the uncomfortable subject had been addressed.
“We are going to upgrade your ear bud so that it can reach us even underground, and once underground you should be able to communicate with the commander.”
The admiral continued, “once we are all in contact you will arrange a prison riot. At the same time we will attack from the entrance.”
“I’m just supposed to arrange a riot?”
“Like I said, I cannot order you to under....”
Ven cut him off. “It’s fine. But be sure you have oxygen helmets.”
“Yes, Felix informed us of your trip through the tunnel.”
“What about the Atlas?”
“We’ll be paradropping in, the Atlas is our ride out.”
“Assuming it still works.” Ven was skeptical.
“It works.” The admiral was confident. “You should be proud of yourself Venuvia, I know Tirus would be. You and Felix hit the mother load of intel. We now have a huge advantage over the Arzat.
With that, it was decided, and Ven only had one more question “So when do we go?”