Prologue: One Shots
Cradle of the Gods
By Nopporn Wongrassamee the Evil Author
Summary: The Colonial Fleet finds Earth to be far more different than they could possibly have imagined.
Disclaimer: All things Battlestar Galactica belong to Ronald D. Moore and the Sci-Fi Channel. All things Earth were borrowed from other properties and had their serial numbers carefully filed off… which makes them all mine! Bwahaha!Prologue: One Shots
Sergeant Jeremy Chin, United States Regular Army, spotted his target right away. It wasn’t difficult considering that the target was generating a funnel cloud that flung dust and debris everywhere. And barely visible midway up the funnel was the target, the man who called himself the Djinn.
The Djinn was the latest in super powered terrorists to appear in poor Iraq. He was reportedly a Saudi national and member of Al Qaeda, although there were a dozen other stories going around each one contradicting the last. What they all agreed on was that unlike the unpowered insurgents, Djinn disdained going after Iraqi civilians and focused his energies on hitting Americans. His powers let him get away with it because the winds he created swept aside any return fire.
Of course, the Americans weren’t going to just stand idly and let some super-villain wannabe kill their troops. That was where Jeremy came in.
Deciding that he needed more height, Jeremy flexed his knees and executed a gravity defying jump to a roof top some fifteen meters above his head. He startled some gawking Iraqi civilians as landed on the rooftop ledge next to them.
‘Excuse me,” Jeremy said politely to them in Arabic. Then he jumped again, this time across a broad, four-lane street to the top of an even taller building. This rooftop was thankfully free of civilians. Jeremy unslung his Barrett sniper rifle and took up a prone firing position, bringing the Djinn in his sights.
Once upon a time, the United States government would have called upon a private “Hero” or team of heroes to take care of someone like the Djinn. Such persons would almost certainly be a heavy hitter of some sort, and the resulting fight would almost inevitably result in a “win” for the good guys with heavy property damage.
Today, Jeremy Chin was sent in, and he was by no means a heavy hitter. All the same, he was regarded as more than capable of handling the Djinn. And unlike the Heroes of old, he would also be handling it in such a way that would minimize property damage and civilian casualties.
Besides, the U.S. government wanted to make a point that the Djinn certainly wasn’t worth any heavy hitter’s time.
Drawing on the wuxia training that his Chinese immigrant ancestors had brought to America, Jeremy mind entered a meditative Zen state even as he placed the crosshairs right on Djinn. That felt wrong and Jeremy knew why; the winds would simply sweep his heavy bullet aside. That had to be compensated for, so he tracked left until he just KNEW that his aim was true. The Djinn was no longer even in the scope’s sight when Jeremy squeezed the trigger.
The fifty caliber bullet hit the funnel and its trajectory was immediately pulled aside by the high winds. The armor piercing bullet’s trajectory curved aside and intersected with the Djinn’s center of mass just below the sternum. Bullet resistance was a fairly common ability as super powers went. Of those who had it, a good twenty percent were also resistant to armor piercing ammunition. An even smaller percentage than that were even immune to the heavy round that Jeremy fired.
The Djinn was NOT among that tiny percentage.
The wind funnel died instantly as the shockwave of the bullet’s passage blew the Djinn in half.***
A blur of color whizzed by over the cars and busses packing the streets of Chicago. It’s passage was marked by a rush of wind and the occasional pedestrian who looked up. Traffic cameras and simple network AIs noted the blur’s passage and forwarded the data to local law enforcement where appropriate measures were taken.
In the mean time, the streak of color entered the campus of the University of Chicago and within seconds slipped into an open window. There, the streak slowed down to merely human speeds and resolved itself into a healthy young man who immediately sat in an available seat.
“Good morning, Mister Mathews,” the man at the front of the class said loudly. “You’re late again, I see.”
“Sorry, Professor,” Matthews replied awkwardly. What else could he say?
“Yes, I’m sure,” the teacher said disdainfully. He turned back to the rest of the class. “As I was saying, discoveries made over the last century have revealed the existence of human colonies taken from Earth and placed on far away worlds by so-called ‘gods’. The exact nature of these ‘gods’ have been and still is a matter of considerable debate…”
Two hours later when Matthews checked his e-mail, he found yet another notification from the Chicago police that he had been issued another speeding ticket.***
“Mrs. Anderson, welcome to Kobol,” Doctor Laura Jones greeted. She was an athletic thirty-year-old woman although she looked younger. She was also very well endowed and probably the subject of her male students’ fantasies.
“Thank you, Doctor Jones,” Karen Anderson replied, shaking the archaeologist’s hand. On the other hand, Karen herself was no slouch in the looks department either. She frowned thoughtfully. “Kobol?”
“It’s what we think the former inhabitants called this world,” Jones replied. “It’s Persian for ‘sky’.”
“Persian? I thought the ruins here were Greco-Roman?”
“They are. We’re still scratching our heads on that one,” Jones told her. “Would you like to see what we’ve found so far?”
“Considering that my husband paid for this expedition, I certainly would,” Karen replied. She glanced down at Jones’ hip. “I’m sorry, but are you actually armed?”
“I find guns to be useful in my profession,” Jones said with a shrug. “You never know when you’ll run into an Artifact of Power guarded by irate, semi-sentient guards or a fanatical cult. And then there are the greedy bastards who try and rob you after you get the damned things.”
“I thought that was why my husband hired a team of security guards for you,” Karen said.
“No offense, but I prefer to be able to defend myself,” Jones told her sponsor. “What about you? You look pretty good for someone who’s supposedly over a hundred years old. Do I even have the right Mrs. Anderson?”
“I’m told you do,” Karen replied with a grimace. “I was the subject of an… ah, experimental medical treatment that rejuvenated me.”
“Sounds fantastic,” Jones replied. “Why haven’t I heard of it?”
“It had a nasty little side effect,” Karen answered with a sigh. “I can’t remember a thing about my first ninety years of life.”
“Typical mad scientists,” Jones snorted derisively.
“Tell me about it,” Karen agreed. She looked around the camp. “So where’s Lieutenant Ishita? I thought he’d be here to meet me.”
“We detected some kind of aircraft landing nearby,” Jones replied. “The good lieutenant’s taken some of his security people and gone to go check it out.”
“I thought this planet was uninhabited,” Karen said, concerned. “Where would aircraft come from?”
“Probably from one of those greedy bastards I mentioned,” Jones told her. Her attitude was surprisingly calm, as if this sort of thing happened everyday. For all Karen knew, it did.
“I take it you’ve had your fair share of thieves?” Karen asked.
“I simply can’t go anywhere without tripping over them,” Jones said disgustedly.
“I see,” Karen said. “In that case, perhaps we should…” Karen staggered as a wave of vertigo hit her along with an unpleasant tingling in her head and extremities. When it passed, Karen found herself being held up by Doctor Jones to keep her from falling over.
“Are you all right?” Jones asked, concerned. “What happened?”
“Jesus Christ!” someone shouted, drawing both women’s attention. The speaker was the young MageSoft technician at a bank of monitoring equipment. “Someone’s just detonated a nuclear warhead