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About Literature / Hobbyist Premium Member Keane (Tano'rath)20/Male/Singapore Group :icontftales: TFtales
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Activity


An Update

Journal Entry: Mon Oct 13, 2014, 9:54 AM


Well, I guess I owe you people one of these, so here goes.

Yes, my release schedule has flown off the tracks, well flown off more than usual anyway. Mostly because I've been bouncing all over the place lately, and having work thrown at me. Also had a rather unfortunate accident that had me on crutches for about a week owing to a wound on my sole.

However, my real reason/excuse is that I have been thrown unceremoniously into the position of the chief of the yearbook committee for my company, so my weekends have been chewed up when I have to wade through photos and craft layouts for the book. The dateline is approaching, so this should fizzle out eventually. However, it also means that there is now a mad rush. 

I guess this means my extra chapters will be eaten up and I'll have to build up my lead again xP And yes, I'm still 10 chapters ahead. I know what happens next hahaha but please don't ask me about it. I don't believe in giving spoilers.

Aaaaanyways, I'm now a storeman, meaning that I take care of a store room lol. My pay has been cut too, but no surprise there. No combat pay and no risk pay anymore. Fair is fair. Doesn't make that big a difference anyway, since I'll be done with this nonsense in a few months (or weeks. I've been counting weeks.).

Anyways, if you people want to ask anything, go on ahead. Not like I'm going anywhere haha.

Tano'rath out.

Design by Koragi Artwork by OchreJelly
  • Mood: Tired
  • Listening to: Music
  • Reading: Random stuff
  • Watching: Time go by
  • Playing: Random phone games
  • Eating: army food
  • Drinking: Cordail
Resistance
Chapter 33: Repair and Recuperate

Fenek and I wandered around for a while, even meeting up with the real Atheros on the way . it turned out that he had been with Agenor the entire time. I made sure to check that they were all tagged.

We eventually ended up in the square, where more people wandered, their eyes hollow.

I remembered that look. It was the look of someone who had gone through their first battle, and seen everything. It would pass.

People were sitting against the houses and such, well, against what was left anyway. Scattered around were bits of dragon, while the tanks themselves were covered in blood. A good number of the houses were covered in the stuff too...

As I felt the dragon adrenalin in my system begin to fizzle out, I was hit in the face with a world of aches, pains, and above all, fatigue. I was quite sure that my impact on the wall had done something to my back and tail too...

The dragons that had been under me stayed off to one corner, having been given a wide berth by the humans. They too seemed tired, but I was welcomed with open arms when I stumbled in with the other two.

Sythes smiled as I collapsed beside him, pausing only to clap me on the back. I took a moment to make sure everyone was tagged. Sythes spoke first, "Your men fight well. It was a good battle."

I shook my head and looked around. "Thanks."

Out from the town hall streamed the civilians, mostly staring at the almost wonton destruction in shock. I sighed.

"So, what is our next move?" The dragon pressed on, looking around.

I shrugged. "Rebuild, then decide. The walls are half gone, not to mention the city, and my people need rest and training...and I think I pulled my back or something..."

The dragon nodded. "I see. I haven't seen people fight so viciously before..."

I glanced around at what remained of the bloodbath. How many were dead? I had no idea, but I was sure it wasn't a small number. "Vicious? Perhaps. You know, this used to be a tale of monsters and men. Now, I don't know which is which anymore."

Sythes gave me a strange look, and snorted. "It's obvious enough. You are not monsters. You just have not seen what atrocities the Council commits. Is there a proper place to rest?"

I saw Victor in the crowd, and called him over. "Eh, I'll take care of the dragons. Meeting in the evening. There's a new...development."

Victor nodded, looking as tired as I was. "I'll see about that. We may have to do it tomorrow. The command team will handle it from here, you just take care of your lizard friends, okay?"

I nodded and forced my protesting body to comply as I got up, beckoning for the other dragons to do the same. I brought them to my house, to find that the second floor had been knocked off, however, at least the ground floor was intact, and it would do. Silvera was already there with the other children.

Just as I pushed open the door, I heard Frarh ask, "Where's father? Was he hurt? Can we help? Where's Atheros?"

I flashed a smile, through the caked dirt, grime and blood... I was quite sure that I looked anything but calming. "I'm right here."

Atheros stood next to me as the three of them ran over, and I gave them a hug each, before getting the rest into the house.

It was a tad crowded, but we managed, with most of the dragons simply lying down to sleep. I went to take a shower, while Silvera threw the windows open, saying something about the smell of battle getting into the wood.

I collapsed onto one of the steps that remained of the staircase, and fell asleep almost immediately...

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

[Fenek]

Keane was asleep before he hit the ground. Meanwhile, the rest of us took turns to wash. I sat next to him, placing his hat on the table. There were several injuries on his back and arms, mostly to the muscles, which I managed to heal. He didn't notice, and shifted in his sleep.

Atheros snored one step above, and I allowed myself to fall asleep too, beside my Rider... At least the battle was over...

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

[Agenor]

Fenek had told me quietly about the skinwalker. That must have been what Keane wanted to speak to the other commanders about. However, I knew that he knew little. I would have to speak with him first. However, since everyone was already asleep, I followed suit, shelving the notion for later.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[Keane]

I woke only when the rays of the early morning Sun shone into my eyes, waking me. Most of the other dragons stirred too, and I made my way to the kitchen, weaving through the maze of tails, wings, torsos and heads.

A search of the cupboard revealed some stale bread and bacon. I put all the meat on to fry while chewing on the bread. There would only be about one strip of meat per person, which would obviously not be enough...

A yawning Fenek took over the cooking while I went to answer the door.

Outside was one of the men. "Eh, boss, there's a convoy at the back gate. Carts and stuff, not one of ours. They say they're refugees. One guy says he's a village chief and wants to talk to you. Want me to tell him to come back later?"

I blinked, yawning. "Huh? Since when got refugees one?"

The man shrugged. "Since now...? Must have been the battle. I bet half the world heard it."

I toyed with my mane absentmindedly. "Yeah, probably. Still have a headache from that. I'll come. I'll get dressed, and we'll go."

The man gave me an incredulous look. "No offence, but have you forgotten that you're a dragon?"

I huffed and grabbed my cap. "Doesn't mean... Oh bugger. It's still wet. Nevermind."

The man chuckled and stepped aside for me to exit. I grabbed and holstered my pistol on the way out. "So, you're the Dragon Commander now, huh."

I smirked. "So that's what you people have been calling me. Sort of works I suppose. I got thrown in charge of all things lizard."

The man nodded and we slowly walked to the south gate, while I stopped halfway to buy myself a sausage. People had already begun to rebuild, and most of the dragon carcasses had been towed away, though the blood stained things black as usual, a stark reminder of what had happened.

The marketplace, however had sprung up anyway, with booths set up amongst the rubble, selling the daily necessities of the people. Life went on, I supposed.

In the background, scaffolding loomed all over the place as buildings were repaired or rebuilt. The walls were all covered in scaffolding, and people scurried around them like ants, repairing and upgrading them.

We eventually came to the gate, and I walked through to see a long line of carts, horses and barrows, with an accompanying group of people, mostly humans, though I spied a few dragons in the group.

At the head of the entire long line stood a man, of european descent. He almost matched my height of around two metres, had a head of blond hair, blue eyes, a well defined chin and an enormous mustache. He spoke with a thick accent. "Ahh, so you are zhe dragon everyone has been talking about! So, tell me, vy vont your men open zhe gates for us, hmm?"

I blinked, then gestured at the city in general. "You do know that we just had a huge battle right? The city's not exactly in any shape to take people in."

The man huffed. "Ve are craftsmen, blacksmiths, farmers, masons! Ve can help you!"

I nodded, "Why here?"

The man's expression darkened. "Ve were a peaceful village, but the dragons came and laid waste to it anyway. Ve have nothink left, so we came to your city, where I hear that dragons and humans can walk freely in the streets and have none of ze rubbish from ze ones in power!"

"Hold on. I'll get the gates open." I replied, then walked back in. Victor was there waiting for me.

"What they want?" He demanded, as I walked over.

"They're moving here. Looks to be mostly skilled labour. Should be of use to us. Okay if I open the doors for them?"

Victor shrugged. "Why not. Any help is welcome. I'll get the relevant people to see to accommodation. Dragons will be routed to you. Your area is for their occupancy, though not exclusively. Other areas are already full."

I nodded and motioned for the guards to open the gates. There was a cheer from outside as the carts began moving in. Victor and I stood off to one side to watch.

"I suppose we've reached critical mass?" I remarked, leaning on a wall, noting that my aches had miraculously disappeared, the reason being Fenek, who was immensely pleased with himself.

Victor raised an eyebrow at me. "Critical mass? Since when were we a nuke?"

I made a face. "Not in that sense bro. I mean, people are starting to hear about us. Look, even the dragons know about us! Besides, we have random groups of people turning up now..."

Victor shrugged as we began walking back, though I paused to buy a bundle of meat for the dragons. The stallholder, however, refused to take payment of any kind, saying that it was the least that he could do. I honestly felt bad for taking so much and insisted on paying, but he absolutely refused to take anything. In the end, I was carrying a large bundle of meat and sausages while feeling bad all the way home...

Victor replied later, after he got over his laughter at my reverse haggling. "Well, yeah, we're having people coming in from the other direction as well, though not in such huge numbers. I'll deal with the majority of it, you just handle the dragons. Train them if you want, make sure they behave, and make sure they're taken care of."

I nodded, then paused to whisper in his ear about the 'skinwalker' as Fenek had called the colour changing dragon from the previous day. Victor's eyes widened before he nodded quickly, saying that he would get a meeting up as soon as possible at his place. I prodded Fenek and asked him to get me more information for me. He ended up suggesting that I ask Agenor.

Victor wandered off at some point, while I found myself opening the door to a huge group of hungry dragons. Fenek informed me in a very matter-of-fact tone that all the bacon was gone.

Of course, the entire group of them could smell the food that I was carrying, and I could tell that they were restraining themselves. Some of them were even salivating.

Their numbers, including my own clan, Fenek, Agenor, Silvera, Drae'kos, and the two I had picked up in the forest, I had fifteen hungry dragons staring at the packets of uncooked meat. The injured dragons that had been sent to the basement earlier must have drifted over to the house...

Sythes stepped in front of me the moment I set foot into the house. His eyes kept straying to the food as he spoke. "That is for us, I hope?"

I nodded, but stopped his hand as he reached for the food. "let me get it cooked first. It will taste better, and be more filling."

With that, Sythes reluctantly stepped aside, while I made my way to the kitchen, my route literally lined with reptiles.

The next two hours was a frenzy of eating and cooking, with the food disappearing the moment it was set on the table. However, I did manage to ensure that everyone had a share, plus managed to get a few bites in myself as Fenek and I cooked up a storm.

It was admittedly fun, and very satisfying in the end when my cooking was complemented, though some grumbled about the vegetables that I had tossed into the stew for flavour. Not surprising, since dragons were mostly carnivorous.

Ultimately, once the last morsels were polished off, and we settled around the table for some small talk. In the end, I was prompted to explain my origins yet again.

I never got tired of it, though, as the reactions I got would always be good. However, I decided not to take photos of the stunned dragons since it would probably have been rude. It did, however, take quite some convincing, along with a few tricks with my unloaded pistol to show my army training. On top of that, the story about how I had actually ended up as a dragon gathered quite an audience too, with Sythes right in the middle of it.

As they settled down, Agenor pulled me aside. "Is it true that you killed a skinwalker?"

Slightly stunned at the abrupt question, I shook my head. "No. Fenek did it."

Agenor suddenly seemed excited, though why seemed to be a mystery. "How did it happen? It is rare that they don't slip away first!"

I subsequently recounted the whole thing to the silver dragon, who found it immensely fascinating. He, also agreed to help me out with my later on during the meeting.

As I went to get myself a glass of water, he paused to ask, "So, the head was burned?"

I nodded, and Agenor gave a satisfied smile. "Good, that means that his death is confirmed. You know, since the council has engaged the help from battle makes and skinwalkers, we would do well to find some of our own."

I shrugged. "Will keep that in mind, though we'll have to find them first."

Agenor huffed, as if I was missing out on something. "No, they'll find us. Most of us believe that there is a balance in the world, and some say that the Council has caused an imbalance. The emergence of your Resistance could be seen as a way to counteract this imbalance. That will draw them to us, believe me."

I phased to contemplate this, but hit a brick wall when trying to make sense of the balance thingy. I was probably still tired. "I'll keep that in mind too, once I clear my head, mind you.

"You should rest, then." Agenor remarked as he went to speak with Silvera. The two of them were turning out to be quite a nice couple, even I could see that.

Halfway between thoughts, Sythes broke in. "I expected to see a dragon lead the Resistance, but I didn't expect him to have hatchlings running around calling him Father! You are full of surprises, comrade! So, how goes the running of your clan?"

I shrugged. "Well, they're a handful, but I have help. Are families usually like that for you guys?"

Sythes held back a laugh. "No, usually there's more. The whole clan is what humans would call the extended family. Uncles, aunts, nieces and nephews would live together too. Perhaps your clan is just small?"

Here, Atheros cut in. "Ah, that, well, Father, I have kept that from you..."

I sighed, letting my shoulders sag. "Let me guess: more dragons?"

Atheros nodded, while Fenek giggled at my reaction. I sighed again. "So, when will they turn up?"

Atheros stopped to think for a while, before pointing to Sythes, "For a start, he is an uncle, so that means he's your brother."

I glanced between the two of them. "You must be joking."

Atheros huffed. "This is a serious matter, Father, I do not jest!"

Sythes nodded slowly, adding, "I was waiting for the right moment, brother."

I looked between the two again, then shook my head, groaning. "I need a beer."

Fenek, of course, stopped me before I even walked off, and I settled for offering Sythes my hand, which, after some explanation, he took and shook. I smirked, "Welcome to the madhouse, bro. Make yourself right at home."

Sythes seemed to be immensely amused at this and let out a hearty laugh, while boxing me on the shoulder. "I will, brother, I will!"

Subsequently, it seemed to dawn on my brother that Fenek was special somehow. "So, brother, why does this fellow follow you around everywhere? Is he your protector?"

Fenek practically glowed, nodding. I glanced over and flicked one of his horns. "Pipe down, you. I am apparently his Rider, and he came looking for me some time back, when I was still human. He's a pain in the ass, don't mind him."

Sythes glanced at Fenek and nodded, already amused, while Fenek himself whined. "Must you always tell people that?"

I rolled my eyes. "Yes, because you are a pain in the ass."

After a while of chatting with my newly found family member, I found out that there were more waiting to join us at the right time, but only if I was absolutely sure that I was ready. I evidently was not. For one thing, my house wasn't big enough.

Either way, Victor came in at some point to let me know that the meeting would be starting soon, and I had to excuse myself to drag Agenor along...
Resistance
Chapter 32: Siege

Of course, none of the commanders wanted to handle the dragons, so they were delegated to me yet again. I briefed them on what to do, and plonked them on some rooftops and in some houses, from which they would fire upon the enemy to support the forces on the walls. I returned to the top of the front walls myself, along with Fenek. Atheros was sent along with one of the warriors, as I was not comfortable with him staying on the walls with me. Hopefully he wouldn't be caught up in too much of the fighting...

On the other side of the gate was Victor, who, like me, stood ready with a bunch of matadors. Hopefully, that would take out some of the force before they managed to get at us... At the East flank, stood a different pair, armed with the same weapons.

In the distance, there was the roar of an engine, as a rover sped down the road, towards the gate. As it hurtled towards us, we threw the gates open at the last moment, just enough for them to pass, then slammed them shut again. Below, the vehicle skidded to a halt, the brakes squealing. I heard the doors open and some shouting below. Someone called for a medic, and I heard running.

I heard footsteps coming from behind, and whirled around, still holding my pistol, only to find that it was one of the scouts. He was bleeding from a bunch of minor cuts all over the place, but otherwise looked unharmed. "You're the commander of the North defense line, right?"

I nodded. "More or less. Hard not to find me. What's the situation out there?"

The man shuddered, then straightened up again. "Ugly. We saw smoke in the distance, which means that they probably went after any settlement they found. We counted ten flying contacts headed this way, some threw fireballs our way, but we managed to get ahead of those, though one hit close enough to shatter our windows. I was lucky to only be cut. My partner who was driving, though....probably has second degree burns. He blocked most of it for me and drove on." He subsequently surprised me by saluting.

I could tell that the dragons under my command were watching. Their eyes were locked on me, initially possibly waiting for orders. Now, probably wondering what the blazes the scout was doing. Even Fenek seemed to want to ask, but didn't, knowing that it was not the time. I returned the salute. "Report acknowledged. Now, go and carry your report to the central command team, or go to the hospital first. You don't look to be in that bad condition, so I leave the order up to you."

He nodded, putting his arm down after I did, as per military protocol. With that, he went off, returning to his vehicle which I finally noticed to indeed be missing its window glass, as well as the inside, or rather, what I could see of the inside was splattered with blood and covered with shards of glass. A few glints of light in his hair told me that he had glass there too... Before sitting down, I saw him pause to sweep some of the glass off... Subsequently, with the roar of the engine, he was off.

I sighed and went back to preparing the matadors, while showing Fenek how to cover me while I threw out the spent ones and took a new one. Matadors were one use only...

Victor and I had already agreed on how we would share our targets. It was quite simple, actually. He would start from the left, and I, from the right, then we would work our ways to the center, if we actually managed to get that far before they got there.

I glanced down the horizon and sighed again. It was actually quite a nice day. Nice weather to go out and do things too...

I familiar shout shot over, blasting through my thoughts and causing my gaze to snap round. "CONTACTED!"

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[Fenek]

While Keane had been gone, I had actually spoken with one of the men. The conversation was of the usual things, however, when the topic of training came up, he had said something that had stuck in my mind, somewhat like a piece of music, or a sound that keeps bouncing around in one's thoughts. However, what had been said bore no connection to that.

'You can tell a proper soldier from some of the guys here when someone shouts the appropriate things. Most will be confused, but these guys, they'll know exactly what to do, and how to react. You're lucky, dragon, that your Rider is one of those people..."

At the shout of 'Contacted', Keane's head snapped round, then back to look at the source of the explosion.

A fireball had just landed short of the walls, and had slammed into the ground right in front of Keane's post. He didn't pause to look down like the others.

By the time the newer men had recovered from the shock, both Keane and Victor had already hefted their weapons. Those tube things that shot streaks of smoke and death. They called them 'matadors'. As they took up position, I heard my Rider shouting down at the men, "Guys! Contacted! Weapons free, but hold off till they're in range. Heavy MGs, the sky is yours! GPMGs, hold fire till the order is given, infantry, hold position and sit tight. Should the walls fall, the fight shall be in your hands! Understood?"

In the distance, I heard the other commanders shouting down things that were similar, and all getting cheers in response, though in our case, it was punctuated with a chorus of roaring from the dragons on our side. Keane had also arranged, as a last minute idea, to have bands of yellow painted on the dragons, so that they wouldn't be shot by mistake.

I found it to be a good idea, although the warriors didn't take well to having paint smeared onto their scales... Even Atheros , Agenor and I were not spared. Keane had painted himself as an example, although his cap was more than enough to identify him.

The air was so full of tension that I didn't have to smell it to tell. It was there, almost palpable to the touch. It could be seen in the eyes of the men, and in the words they spoke. It didn't take much to tell that a good number of them were preparing to pass...

"Backblast clear!" My thoughts were intruded upon by twin shouts, as both Keane and Victor completed their preparations. Now, a smaller stick-like thing stuck out of the cylinders, which I had been told would help to cause more damage. With a loud 'woosh!', both fired, with equally large trails of smoke shooting out from both the front and back of the tubes. I wondered if they shot in both directions, but immediately realised that that would have been ridiculous. A glance at the flanks of the city showed identical lines streaking out to meet the enemy...

All their technology only seemed to make humans more vicious war-makers than us. I half wanted to just snatch my Rider up and leave, but that would be unwise. He had insisted that most of the technology was for peaceful purposes, but all I had seen so far were the tools of war. The harbingers of death...

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[Agenor]

I was stuck on one of the roofs with Sythes, the leader of the defense for the village. He had spent the past few minutes asking question after question about what was going on, but all I could do was to shrug. Most, if not all the time, the central committee would keep the full plans to themselves, and only tell people what they needed to know.

It was an admittedly good way of working, lest someone got captured, but that only served to make my predicament worse, since I didn't have the answers he sought. Being a leader, he was frustrated by the fact that he knew nothing, and I understood that. However, given the lack of time, it was unavoidable.

Ultimately, he was silenced when the first matador shots were fired. He stopped to stare at the streaks of smoke left both in front and behind the weapons, while whatever it was that was propelled by the smoke streaked upwards, towards the approaching force.

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[Keane]

There was no time to see if I had hit or not. I threw the spent weapon aside and pulled over a fresh one. I noticed that in the distance, there was an explosion. I looked up for a moment, and noted with grim satisfaction that the shots from my front had made their mark. Two down, eight to go.

However, before I could heft the second weapon, someone to my left screamed, "Incoming! Take cover, TAKE COVER!"

I hit the ground, feeling the hard stones against my scales, pausing only to slam Fenek to the ground too, and just in time. I felt a blast of heat from where I had previously been standing, and looked round to see the front of the walls on fire. On top of that, the fire seemed to be dangerously close to my remaining matadors. I cursed.

Not bothering to tell Fenek anything, I thrust two into his arms and grabbed another two on my own, then beckoning him to follow me as I scurried to a different spot, while shouting to Victor, "Improve cover!"

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Victor and his own set of men grab their weapons and run off somewhere.

On the horizon, the dragons drew nearer. I could already make out their scale colour, and their sizes. They were closing fast, very fast. In about a minute, they would be in range of the heavy machine guns. The others had sent the tank somewhere or other, and it was nowhere to be seen. Perhaps they had other plans for the machine. Either way, all I had to work with was what I had here, in the city.

As they closed, I shouted for the men to hear, "HMG, engage enemy! Maximum range, don't spam!"

Quickly, I settled down at a new spot and hefted my own matador, while in the background, there was a chorus of bolts sliding back, and gun belts being loaded. There was no verbal reply, and instead, the steady sound of machine gun fire punctuated the air as I picked my target. The matador had two explosive charges, and I had set a delay between the two detonations by pulling out the rod, which contained the first charge so that it would detonate first. The idea would be that it would breech a tank's armor first, then the main blast would do even more damage. In this case, it would blast off a dragon's scales first, then kill the creature.

It was barbaric, and I was a murderer, but what choice did we have? The other side would never let us negotiate peace, or let us even exist if they could help it. I had committed my group to this, and we would have no choice. I had to see it through, for better or for worse. We all had to.

I gritted my teeth as I steadied my aim, while reminding Fenek to stay out of the backblast. Subsequently, I gave the standard warning, then fired, before tossing the spent casing aside and grabbing a new weapon. No doubt, they would visually trace the smoke path of the missile and come after me again.

Hence, I grabbed the extra weapons again and ran, Fenek close behind.

Another explosion, a roar of pain, then one of them crashed to the ground. I turned to look as I ran, just in time to see one of them, a gold crash to the ground with an enormous sound, creating a crater where the creature impacted. At the same time, there was another explosion, from the other side as Victor's shot made its mark.

Still, the creatures continued forward relentlessly, their numbers reduced to six, but still posed a significant threat. At the rate they were closing, I doubted if I could get more than one more shot out, and even that would be a tall order.

The lead dragon must have been twice Fenek's size. All he would have to do to destroy the city would be to sit on it twice, maybe thrice. I made eye contact with Victor and pointed. He gave the slightest of nods before hefting his weapon. Both of us knew that there would be no time to shift position.

I brought my own weapon to bear and stared down the sights, centering on the lead creature, who looked ready to bellow something.

The creature spoke as Victor and I adjusted our aiming. "So you insolent rats dare to challenge the authority of the council? Worry not, for now, your day of reckoning has come! Surrender, and you'll be spared as slaves! Defy, and death shall be your companion!"

Victor started the count. "Two, three, four! Backblast-"

I finished for him. "Clear! Reckon this, you fuckers!"

With that, both of us fired, and the projectiles streaked towards the enormous dragon. I hurriedly switched to my rifle, while in the background, the staccato of GPMGs firing joined the background noise. The huge creature met the projectiles head on.

However, as fate would have it, one of the rockets failed and didn't detonate, instead, embedding itself in one of the scales just on top of an eye. The other one slammed into the creature's nose and exploded, blasting a huge hole where the nostril used to be, sending blood and gore flying everywhere. I cursed; the other rocket would have killed.

With that, the large dragon roared in rage, and charged. The others, obviously his subordinates, surged forward with him, chewing our few minutes left down to seconds.

The men started firing too, all targeting the dragons, spots of blood could be seen on their hide, but still, they continued.

The large creature slammed into the wall, sending me over the edge, while I shoved Fenek out of the way just in time. I landed roughly, but was thankfully mostly unharmed. However, the heavy machine gun operator next to me wasn't so lucky, and his broken body laid next to me, hand still gripping the handle of his weapon.

Sometime during the fall, I had lost my rifle. Above, I heard Fenek shouting my name. However, there was no time, as I found myself standing on top of a pile of rubble, which was on top of the large dragon, who seemed to be momentarily stunned, the scales on his snout filled with wounds probably from the same machine gun that laid next to me, now useless because it had no mount.

The creature's eyes snapped round, and locked onto me. "You. I'll do well when I present your head to the council!"

I heard myself snarl as I drew my pistol. I stood on one side of his snout. On the other side, I spied what looked like the unexploded matador rocket.

Shaking off the rubble, I got up, and leveled the pistol at the rocket.

The large dragon laughed. "What, do you think that tiny thing can kill me?"

I gave him a mirthless smirk while taking the opening to line up the sights. "In fact, I do."

Without further ado, I emptied the pistol into the rocket, finally causing it to explode, sending me flying once again, and straight into a wall. I heard a loud 'crack!', and half heard my pistol clatter to the ground next to me before the darkness came.

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[Fenek]

The largest of the attacking dragons charged right at the wall, and slammed into it right in front of Keane and I. Before I could react, I found myself on the ground,  some distance from where I had been standing, evidently having been pushed away by Keane.

My Rider, however, wasn't so lucky. He was tossed over the wall as it crumbled and landed somewhere below. The large dragon had caused a good portion of the wall to crumble,  taking with it one of the gun placements...

I shouted his name, but received no reply. Reaching out to his mind showed him to be fine. Immediately, I decided to go down and get him. However, before I could do anything, I heard the sound of his pistol down below, then a loud explosion. From below, smoke and sparks shot up, along with bits of blood and gore, and some grey matter that I could not identify.

Before I could go and investigate, I was pulled away, and brought to one of the roofs. Beside me landed Sythes.

Agenor stood off to one side, firing at a green dragon who had landed and was already laying waste to the street. Around us, the battle raged, and I couldn't resist the battle-fever. I could tell that Keane was unconscious, but not dead. There was an urge to go and save him, but as the battle continued to rage, I found myself torn.

Agenr seemed to notice, and nodded. "Go."

Without hesitation, I took flight.

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[Agenor]

The battle didn't seem to be going too well. Five had broken through from the front, and six from the flank. The fighting was ongoing in the streets, where the men were reduced to emptying their guns into the dragons and hoping to deal some damage.

Most of them were evidently very inexperienced. However, here and there, one would hear shouts, and once in a while, there would be the death-roar of a dragon. However, those were rare. I wondered where the experienced soldiers were, other than the tiny handful that were on the field...

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

[Keane]

I woke with a slightly buzzing head to find myself airborne.

"...What the fuck?" I muttered, groaning, still trying to clear the haze in my mind.

I was set down on the ground, and a familiar snout came into view. Fenek .

The brown dragon seemed very concerned, and asked if I was feeling alright. I nodded and got up, finding myself on a rooftop, with Atheros on one side shooting madly at a dragon below. The building next door had already been crushed to rubble, the sniper stationed there lying in a crumpled heap in the rubble, his .50 rifle lying off to one side.

I got up, still groaning. "how many got through?"

Fenek didn't seem to want to answer, but did so anyway. "The defense failed. Five on our side, six on the flank."

I nodded. "Expected. Where's my gun?"

Fenek pressed the pistol into my palm, and placed an arm on my shoulder. "What now? The city is lost, is it not?"

I gritted my teeth as I reloaded the pistol. "Not yet." Subsequently, I pointed at the abandoned sniper rifle. "Do me a favour, Fenek. Grab that for me. Atheros, cover me while I check it."

I had the heavy rifle in my hands in relatively short order, while the two dragons covered me, I cycled the bolt to find one last round in the magazine.

The problem, however, was that the scope was not zeroed, and I had no time to do that. I ended up ripping the whole thing off, since the attacker was practically below us anyway.

Squatting down, I brought the rifle to bear and lined up the iron sights.

Meanwhile, the dragon below was busy laying waste to one of the shop houses, while the fighters were in the various alleyways, trying to suppress it to no avail. Problem was that they were all going for body shots...

Grunting at the soreness in my arms, I steadied the gun and fired, the ridiculous recoil almost throwing the rifle out of my grip when I fired. I stumbled back, while the dragon below crashed to the ground.

The rifle was empty, so I put it aside, and drew my pistol. I glanced down again to note that the creature was dead, leaking blood from the myriad of wounds, and from one right on top of its head, from my shot. When I peeked over, there was a ragged cheer. I had half expected to be shot at, but realised that my jockey cap was still on my head, impaled there by both my horns.

I jumped down with the other two, and joined the ragtag group of human defenders. I counted just over ten of them.

They seemed jubilant enough, though I added that we would have to aim for the head next time...

I sent Fenek up to take a look, and he landed within the minute, saying that most of the dragons were being herded to the square. He counted eight left. I sighed.

A glance around told me that we were standing in the middle of the main street, with what was left of the main gate on one side, and the square on the other. Most of the buildings were either damaged or already reduced to rubble.

I froze, struck by the similarities between this, and the actual Singapore in the early days of the war, only that the skyscrapers were replaced with low mud brick houses, but they both burned all the same.

Before I could give my orders, however, I recognised the roar of engines coming from the direction of the main gate.

"Whole lot, into the alley. Now!" I snapped, ducking into said alley, just as three leopard tanks crashed through the remnants of the gate and the bounding walls. I stared for a moment, wondering where the other two had come from. However, as the lead tank rolled past at full speed, I gathered my wits.

The tank rolled over the dead dragon with little difficulty, the blood painting red tracks on the ground as the vehicle roared past...

I pointed in the general direction of the square. "To the square. Garrison the buildings. Go."

As the men scattered, I was left with Atheros and Fenek. I told them to go too, but both asked the same question; where I was going.

I shook my head. "I need to be somewhere. Go. I'll be fine."

Both refused, and I sighed. "Fine. Just so you know, this was planned."

With that, I sprinted back to the walls, back to where I had ended up when I blacked out.

Fenek shot me an inquisitive look, and I simply pointed at one of the heavy machine guns. "Man it. Cover the tanks. Atheros, you help him. I won't be far."

I didn't bother to wait for a reply, and instead chambered over the rubble that had been my position and searched around until I found what I wanted.

Meanwhile, I heard the machine gun start firing, eventually melting into the background of roaring and gunfire. The tanks hadn't fired yet.

I unearthed my last matador and hefted it. With that, I scrambled to join the duo at the machine gun, which was miraculously untouched. It was on what was left of the walls, and the two dragons had already turned it to fire on the attackers within the city.

Here, I got a bird's eye view of the city. Black smoke bellowed from dozens of fires, all ignored, while battles rages in the streets. The tanks laid in three avenues, with good views of the square and it's adjoining streets.

Most of the groups seemed to be doing relatively fine, slowly driving the dragons into the square. However, I soon realised that once the first tank fired, the game would be up. I hoped that that had been factored into the plans...

I directed fire towards the groups that were having difficulty, and slowly but surely, the creatures were driven to the square. They seemed to have run out of fire, as no more fireballs flew around. The dragons instead issued very short jets of flame, and would occasionally swipe or snap at the men. However, those were avoided easily enough.

I counted seven dragons, all of which had already been driven to various points in the square.

The tanks made their move, as shown by their belching of black smoke as the engines revved, and the vehicles rolled into the square, dispatching the creatures quickly enough...

The men down below cheered, celebrating a perceived victory.

However, I narrowed my eyes. There was one missing.

I pulled Fenek over and looked him in the eye. "Fenek, eight or seven?"

The brown dragon seemed stunned at my sudden demand, but gave his unwavering answer all the same. "Eight. I'm very sure I saw eight."

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[Fenek]

Without warning, Keane shoved me aside and emptied his pistol in the direction of Atheros.

Had he gone mad? Was he so desperate to make the body count hit eight?

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[Keane]

Telling Fenek would have given the game away. The black dragon standing behind him was not Atheros. Atheros was tagged with yellow paint. This dragon was not tagged.

Even if some of the paint had been scratched off, the yellow was so bright and loud that even a speck of it would have been obvious enough.

Shoving Fenek aside, I emptied my weapon into the unsuspecting dragon. I hadn't time to aim properly, and several of my shots went wide. However, enough hit to knock some of the paint, or dye or whatever it was that had been used to change the dragon's scale colour off...

However, it was not paint or dye. Whatever I did must have broken a spell of some sorts, as the black dragon began to turn blue, starting from the points of impact of my bullets.

That, however, didn't stop the creature from pouncing me.

As he pinned me under his grip, he gave me a malicious smile, "So, I see you've seen though my little trick, hmm?"

I struggled, getting my hand free and landing as hard a punch I could on the creature's snout. I growled. "Fuck you."

The dragon snorted and his appearance changed again, this time to resemble Fenek. Even his voice changed to match. "Such language!"

I growled and landed another punch, then rolled onto my side. Sensing some sort of weakness in the creature's grip, I kicked him hard on the shin, making him lose focus and allowing me to break the lock.

My pistol was nowhere to be seen and my rifle was long gone. Fenek seemed to be stunned, staring at the attacker. I growled at him. <Do something, you idiot!>

Fence's eyes turned to the matador and he quietly picked it up. I felt him enter my mind and shift through my memories, trying to see how to aim it.

Unfortunately, I couldn't help him, as the other dragon came at me again, swiping with his claws. I dodged and parried.

The creature laughed, turning blue once again. "You fight well."

With that, he threw another punch. This time, I grabbed his arm, turned round, pivoted it on my shoulder and slammed him to the floor, before stepping aside. "You suck."

With a prompt from Fenek, I threw myself off the roof, flaring my wings and letting myself spiral down slowly. On top, I heard a huge explosion, and seconds later, Fenek flew alongside me, and we landed together. I noted that he was the correct Fenek, the tagged one.

He handed me my pistol, which I reloaded. In his other hand, he held part of the other dragon's head.

Fenek snarled, and spat. "The skinwalker is dead."

I looked at the head, disgusted. "Yuck! Why'd you take that thing? Get rid of that shit!"

Fenek nodded and tossed the head up, then blasted it with a jet of flame, before making me walk off with him. "I never thought the council would employ such people!"

I shrugged. "War isn't pretty, Fenek."
Resistance C32: Siege
And finally, a battle. Long chapter, fun to write. Revised once or twice too. Feedback on this will be appreciated~

Previous chapter:  Resistance C31: LockdownResistance
Chapter 31: Lockdown
I nearly drifted the truck in front of the hospital, and quickly unloaded the refugees, human and dragon alike. Victor came hurrying over,  already drenched in sweat. I reached over to shut the engine off, but he stopped me. "No. We need to go to the station. Some of the heavier weapons were kept there."
I raised an eyeridge. "Like?"
"Matadors, among other things, along with some spillover ammo from the ammo dump we have here. I think we'll need as much as we can get, given the situation." He replied, as he squeezed in next to Fenek.
I nodded, and once the tailboard was put back up, I accelerated out the town. "Situation in the town?"
Victor paused to think for a while, then replied, "We evacuated most of the civilians to the town hall basement, and some to the station. They're on the way there now, shouldn't be long. We have about half our fighting strength left in town, and hopefully more should come once the village saga is wrapped up. We also ha

Next chapter:  Resistance C33: Repair and RecuperateResistance
Chapter 33: Repair and Recuperate
Fenek and I wandered around for a while, even meeting up with the real Atheros on the way . it turned out that he had been with Agenor the entire time. I made sure to check that they were all tagged.
We eventually ended up in the square, where more people wandered, their eyes hollow.
I remembered that look. It was the look of someone who had gone through their first battle, and seen everything. It would pass.
People were sitting against the houses and such, well, against what was left anyway. Scattered around were bits of dragon, while the tanks themselves were covered in blood. A good number of the houses were covered in the stuff too...
As I felt the dragon adrenalin in my system begin to fizzle out, I was hit in the face with a world of aches, pains, and above all, fatigue. I was quite sure that my impact on the wall had done something to my back and tail too...
The dragons that had been under me stayed off to one corner, having been give
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Resistance
Chapter 31: Lockdown

I nearly drifted the truck in front of the hospital, and quickly unloaded the refugees, human and dragon alike. Victor came hurrying over,  already drenched in sweat. I reached over to shut the engine off, but he stopped me. "No. We need to go to the station. Some of the heavier weapons were kept there."

I raised an eyeridge. "Like?"

"Matadors, among other things, along with some spillover ammo from the ammo dump we have here. I think we'll need as much as we can get, given the situation." He replied, as he squeezed in next to Fenek.

I nodded, and once the tailboard was put back up, I accelerated out the town. "Situation in the town?"

Victor paused to think for a while, then replied, "We evacuated most of the civilians to the town hall basement, and some to the station. They're on the way there now, shouldn't be long. We have about half our fighting strength left in town, and hopefully more should come once the village saga is wrapped up. We also have the leopard."

I nodded as I swerved to avoid a cart, then turned into the forested road that ran towards the station entrance.

As we rolled towards the entrance, I slammed the brakes. Something was wrong.

"What are you waiting for?" Victor demanded, glaring.

I raised a hand. "Ssh. It's too quiet. Rifle is yours. Civvies haven't reached too..."

Victor paused to consider this, while I drew my own pistol, pulling the slide back halfway to make sure a round was already chambered, then pulling the hammer back. Victor cocked the AK and nodded. "Point taken. I see no one..."

I shut the engine off and pulled the key. "You've the bigger gun. Cover me, I'll go first."

Victor nodded. In front, I could already see the station entrance. Both of us exited the truck at the same time, and I crept in front. Glancing to Victor, I pointed at one of the trees and motioned for him to take cover. As he moved, I slowly inched my way towards the entrance. I saw the signs of a small campsite. A still glowing remnant of a fire, broken twigs, and an area swept clear of deadfall.

A twig snapped. I ducked and pressed myself against the station  entrance, feeling the cool moss that grew along the colder concrete against my own scales. Feeling my own grip on the pistol tighten, I forced myself to relax and breathe for a moment.

In the direction of the campsite, I heard the sound of voices, ones that were distinctly draconic in nature.

"Are you sure this is the place?" Whoever was saying that sounded more frustrated than anything. On the other end of the road, Victor made eye contact and held up two fingers. There were two of them so far.

"Yes, I am very sure. All the rumours point to this tumbledown relic as the Resistance base! They will surely be here, perhaps just watching?" This person seemed to be more plaintive, and despite his assertions, he actually seemed to be very unsure... There was a hint of desperation in his voice.

Fenek prodded my mind, asking for instructions. I told him to stay back as the rear guard just in case this was a trap...

The first voice came on again. He sounded somewhat agitated, and I heard the sound of pacing... "So what if they are? This is the human-run Resistance we're talking about! Why would they help us anyway? It is more likely that we'll be killed or taken prisoner!"

The second voice replied, his volume increasing, and accompanied with a growl. "They say their leader is a dragon himself! Besides, that idiot Dare'kos went to them and lived I hear."

I unbuckled my belt and holster and hung it quietly on a nearby tree, along with my cap. However, I kept my pistol. Motioning for Victor to stay put, and informing Fenek of my plan, I decocked my pistol, then while still holding it, clasped my hands behind my back. Victor raised an eyebrow at me, and I motioned that I was going to talk to the two dragons.

I took a silent step out, and noted that there were indeed only two dragons, who were now engaged in a heated argument over whether or not I would choose to help them. One was a deep midnight blue, with a black underside, evidently a night hunter, while the other was orange with a off white underside. The first voice had belonged to the dark blue dragon. Both were in biped form...

I strolled out to the station entrance, then leaned on the door frame. both still did not notice me. I cleared my throat and was still ignored.

Snarling, "I don't have time for this." I slammed my tail on the rusty metal door with a resounding 'clang!' and a shower of rust flakes. That got their attention, as both their heads snapped round.

Of course, the first thing that was done was to threaten me. The dark blue growled and barred his teeth. "Who are you? How long have you followed us?"

I raised an eyeridge. "I walked in a short moment ago, when you two were too busy arguing to notice my attempts at gaining your attention."

Another growl. "I will not ask again. Who are you? With whom does your alliegence lie?"

I smirked and shrugged. "Suffice to say that my allegiance does not lie with the Council. My identity and my allegiance matters not here. What matters is yours."

The blue growled again, but the orange held him back. "He does not lie. I can feel it, but his mind is also most strange. I cannot see most of his personality."

I nodded and smirked. The old trick, the one I had used on Fenek in our early days was still effective. I was tempted to say 'spot on', but that would just make me seem weirder, and I didn't want that right now. "That is correct, and now, what is your purpose here?"

The blue seemed to get even more agitated, his black irises thinning to slits, but again, the orange, whose blue eyes registered slight suspicion, held him back still. "We seek those who resist this tyranny. Perhaps you can help? Drak here is a warrior. I am Merk, a simple scribe."

Fenek confirmed for me their identities, and added that they were not using the same trick as me. I snorted. "What makes you think I can help you? Besides, for all I know, you two are agents from the Council!"

Drak broke free of Merk's grip and charged at me, roaring. "I am no agent of that filth!"

Fenek seemed to want to interfere, saying that his anger was genuine. I brushed him aside, telling him to stay put.

Diving to one side, I brought the pistol to bear, pulling the hammer back as I did so. Both dragons froze. Victor seemed to want to move in as well, but I signed for him to hold position.

Drak nearly crashed into the doors with his momentum, but managed to stop just in time while I landed on my side, still pointing the gun at his head, chuckling as I got up. Drak glared at me. "I do not jest!"

Drak seemed to want to come charging at me again, but Merk stopped him. "See! He carries a human made weapon! From the old world too!"

I nodded, lowering the pistol. "A very astute observation. You two can relax now. I'm not here to do any of you any harm."

Drak grudgingly relaxed, still glaring at me. "We still do not know who you are."

I smirked as I went to retrieve my belt and holster, which I put back on, and holstered the decocked pistol. I walked back while wearing my cap. "Oh, me? You two already know who I am."

I didn't wait for the reply, and instead walked back to the truck and started it up, motioning for Fenek and Victor to meet me at the station. I drove the vehicle the remainder of the way and parked it in front of the station entrance. Fenek was covering with the weapon as Victor began carrying out matadors, which were anti-tank weapons, out. I killed the engine and got down.

The two newcomers were still staring as I began to load the weapons up. Merk finally spoke, seeming to be stunned. "Youre..."

I smirked. "A soldier doing his duty. Could use some help here. Listen to the human. He'll let you know how you can help. Time runs short. Hurry."

After about five minutes of slowly loading, despite the help from the other dragons, Fenek got frustrated and asked us to stop. He spent the next minute telling me off for not thinking of using magic, followed by him teleporting several crates of ammo, along with the rest of the matadors, which amounted to about fifty of them, onto the truck. The brown dragon looked to be somewhat tired out by the spell, but brushed me off when I asked.

Fenek sat at the back with the two newcomers, while Victor and I sat up front. I started the engine as usual, then drove back to the town. We kept two matadors in the cab just in case.

A glance at the side mirror and nearly gave me the shock of my life as I saw bolt of fire come screaming towards the truck.

I cursed, then threw the wheel all the way to the right, causing the truck to take a sharp turn. In front, I saw the fireball slam into the road, obliterating it with a loud explosion, throwing debris everywhere. If I hadn't swerved, we would have been right there... I cursed, then cursed again, "Fuck! Must be the front scout!"

Subsequently, I turned to the back and shouted to the passengers, "Contacted! Whole lot, on the floor! Now!"

Victor had already popped the top hatch by the time I had swerved again to avoid another fireball. he was already holding one of the matadors, and taking aim, shouting down to me, "Yes, front scout! Drive straight! Straight dammit! I can't aim with you swerving all over the bloody place!"

I growled as I swerved once again to avoid another blast of fire. "I'm trying! I'm trying! Someone suppress that fucker! NOW!"

Fenek caught on, and I heard the staccato of gunfire from the back. There was a roar of anger from behind, then the sound of frenzied wingbeats. The fire stopped and I straightened the vehicle. In the rearview mirror, I saw a rather angry looking red dragon attempting to charge at us, roaring. Victor seemed to be busy aiming, while Fenek was still firing at the creature, who seemed to be strafing right and left to avoid the bullets. I gritted my teeth. "If you want a race, I'll give it to you."

With that, I literally kicked the pedal to the floor, eliciting a roar from the engine as the truck surged forward, while the town came into view just in front. Growling, I shouted up to Victor again, "Time's running out, bro! Shoot!"

I heard Victor curse from on top, as Fenek stopped shooting. The pursuer righted his course and stopped strafing. His mouth opened, and a fireball begin to form. "Anytime now, Victor!"

Victor laughed humorlessly from on top, his scent laced with battle-fever. "Backblast clear! Two, three, four, FIRE!"

There was a loud 'woosh' as the anti-tank weapon discharged, and a trail of white smoke blasted towards the dragon, and impacted it right in the mouth as it got ready to spit the fireball at us. The creature's head exploded in a gory set of fireworks as the unguided missile met the fire and detonated, leaving the headless body to come crashing down in a shower of blood and gore. In the mirror, I could also vaguely see the outlines of the main force approaching along the horizon. I cursed.

As the truck screeched to a stop at the entrance, I saw a column of dust approaching in the direction of the dragon village. My forces were returning, but I could only hope that they would get back in time.

The guards threw the gates open in a great hurry for us, and I accelerated in, towards the town square, where I could see the troops being briefed. Swerving to avoid the assembled group, and hitting the horn, I jammed the brakes and brought the vehicle to a stop right in front of the town hall, where there were also crates of ammunition lying around, along with stacks and stacks of loaded magazines that were already being issued. I called a few people over to help to unload, while the dragons werte escorted off under guard. I gave a quick apology, saying that we would have to be sure about what side they were on. Merk nodded, but Drak insisted on being allowed to fight. I sighed and had him detailed under my command. Once the unloading was done, I drove the truck back to the vehicle park, then walked back.

The troops that had already been equipped were dispatched, while all the dragons were directed to me, as usual. The children had already been sent off, under the care of Silvera, which left me with the usual bunch, with the addition of Drak and Atheros who insisted on fighting by my side. The latter had apparently given the men sent to bring him away quite alot of grief, up until they gave in and let him stay, since he already knew how to use a rifle anyway.

I gave Drak a crash course on how to operate and troubleshoot a rifle, before issuing out the weapons. I told Agenor to stick with Drak, and to keep an eye on him, while Fenek and Atheros would be with me. It would have been easier to work with an even number of people, but circumstances disallowed it. Merk was already being squirrelled away in the basement with the other civilians, under guard.

Victor assumed his appointment as the tank commander, while Ren Jie was already coordinating the internal defences. It was reported that they were mostly ready, and once the last man was equipped, we should be able to hold out. The village force was already at the camp gate, bringing in a handful of dragon casualties. The report was that they were mostly too late...

However, they also reported that the force from the village had already been neutralised, which was good news. I pointed my team to the walls, where they took position near to the front gate. I would have to go up the walls and operate the matadors later on, since most hadn't been trained in their use yet.

Still, I had to go to the hospital first, as the leader of the dragon forces had insisted on seeing me. Fiddling with my rifle nervously, I hurried down, while glancing at the town gate the entire time, and the looming figures on the horizon... They had better not send a battle mage this time... I was unsure whether we would be able to handle that at this juncture...

The dragon commander shared the same colouration as me, but with some mottled brown markings and blue eyes. However, what I really noticed was the nasty wound he had on his arm. It had already been bandaged, but was still dripping blood. His name was Sythes. Despite his injury, he still saw it fit to look me over with a critical air.  All the dragons seemed to have changed form, and were being tended to, probably for the ease of transport earlier.

"So, you are the one everyone has been prattling on about, no?" He remarked, his eyes lingering on my pistol.

I decocked the pistol for safety's sake, then folded my arms. "Prattling on about?"

The dragon nodded. "You caused quite a sensation. In fact, I owe you some thanks. If not for your presence before the battle, I doubt if as many would have fought."

Out of habit, I raised an eyeridge. "Me? I didn't do anything."

A snort and a smirk. "You brought hope by showing that you exist, and your men brought some much needed help. Hope is a powerful thing, commander. You of all people should know that."

I couldn't help but nod. "Perhaps."

"What of your plans now? Will we be chased out after we are attended to? This is a human city, no?" Came the concerned reply, as he paused to look over his comrades, his emotions clear for all to see.

"I'll see to your accommodation here." I replied absentmindedly, glancing beyond the city walls, at the ever enlarging figures in the distance. I half wondered if the ten dragons that had been counted included the one scout that we had dealt with earlier.

I could tell that Sythes bit back a growl, but only to follow my gaze. I suspected that he didn't know about the present circumstances. "Why are you so dismissive? Are there other pressing matters other than our lives here?"

I nodded, not turning back. "Yes. The lives of everyone here. Once your people are stable, get them moved to the town hall basement with the civilians."

Surprise. "Civilians? Is that why there are no women and children? Why are they locked underground? Why are you locking us underground too?"

I pointed at the horizon, at one of the approaching shapes. "You have twenty minutes before they arrive. I suggest you all hurry. I'm not in the business of putting the wounded on the front."

Sythes stared at me for a moment. "You mean they aren't friendly? Why, then, are they taking such a direct approach? I believe the Council's tacticians are fond of attacking from the flank..."

"Flanking.....SHIT!" I snarled, and ran to one of the guards, "Eh, get me Victor NOW! With a pair of binos! Double, double!"

Sythes seemed confused about my reaction. No surprise there, though, since he probably had no clue what binoculars were. However, there was no time. The moment Victor came rushing over asking what all the fuss was about, I snatched the binoculars, adjusted them a little then scanned the perimeter, only to reveal another force approaching from our left flank. It looked to be of almost equal size, but was of a smaller size. I cursed again, then showed Victor what I saw. He joined me in my cursing, then rushed off to rearrange the defences. He mentioned detailing the command of the tanks to someone else, mentioning something about a change in plans as he ran off.

I sighed, and thanked Sythes anyway, for he was the one who alerted me, then settled down next to him, sighing.

"Why don't you let us fight? We dragons can take much more, you know..." Sythes remarked, while looking at his people, who were in various states of injury. Some of the would admittedly be able to fight, but my ethics screamed at me not to do it...

Shaking my head all the same, I sighed again. "What I wouldn't do for a bloody howitzer... Or a proper AA gun..."

Sythes still pressed his point. "Let us fight. Let us show your forces where our allegiance lies now."

I fiddled with my pistol absentmindedly, and ended up stripping it, then cleaning it with a piece of cloth that I found lying around. "Why? You already fought your battle. Your men are wounded, and tired. Besides, none of you know how to use our weapons."

The dragon snapped at me and growled. "You were quick to teach just now! You can do the same for us. If you wish to have us stay here, then let us defend it as if it is our home!"

I glanced at both approaching groups of enemies and caved in. I had neither the time nor the desire to argue. "Fine. You'll get to fight. Get your able-bodied men and look for me. I'll be at the main gate, just ask anyone there. For now, I need to run off and do some rearranging."

Sythes nodded, and I went off, sending some of the accumulated forces to the other areas to our flanks and rears to cover our asses in case of more attacks, while helping out in moving the placements, and helping to shore up defences in others. The heavy machine guns were mounted and readied.

Eventually, as I was in the midst of tightening one of the mounts with a borrowed wrench, someone came up and tapped my shoulder. I looked up at the guard and recognised him as one of the guys who was on duty downstairs. "There's a bunch of dragons looking for you, boss. Six of them. One looks a lot like you too."

I nodded. "Okay. I'll go down now, you can just carry on."

The man nodded and went off, while I finished off what I was doing before going down. There, Sythes and another five dragons were waiting. Most had injuries to their wings, except Sythes, who had the wound on his left arm. He mentioned that the rest had arm or leg injures and therefore couldn't help. I nodded.

"Sythes, you do know that you can't hold a rifle, right?" I added, pointing to the black dragon's arm.

He nodded, then pointed at my pistol. "I will use one of those, then."

"You do know that that fires bullets too small to go through scales right?" I replied, while leading them to the guardhouse armoury.

"Then why do you carry it?" He replied, looking over the pistol again, slightly surprised.

I shrugged as I pushed open the door and led the group to the armoury. "Personal preference, and because I have actual military training. Besides, it can still kill if you shoot for the eye or nose, and I've done it before."

The armourer was, of course, busy, mostly because he was trying to make sense of who took which weapon, and because most people didn't get to write very much due to an absence of a need to fill out paperwork these days, almost everyone had horrendous handwriting. The man was so busy squinting at the book on his table that he was oblivious to the fact that we had entered.

I tapped the table, and he looked up. "If the battle had already started, you'd be dead." I remarked, while looking for a pen, "Anyways, I'm drawing an additional five rifles, and one pistol. I'll sign for them."

The man nodded and produced a pen out of nowhere and passed it to me, along with the book. He handed me the rifles one by one, along with magazines in sets of three for the weapons, along with belts with magazine pouches. As he issued the arms, I had to sign for everything and note the serial numbers. I also had to sign for the live rounds that I drew for them.

Afterwards, I took a while to teach them how to operate and troubleshoot the rifles, pausing to demonstrate now and them with my own. Sythes had to be taken aside while I showed him around the pistol.

Admittedly, the dragons didn't seem all too thrilled about using the rifles, and it was revealed that they had initially wanted to fight in their full sized forms, the 'actual dragon way', as aptly put by one of them, who pointed out that I ought to be trained in it too. I declined quickly enough, citing the fact that I barely knew how to fly as a reason.

In the end, I had to explain that their usual way of fighting would not work, since that would result in the town being crushed to rubble, and the inhabitants together with it...

Victor broke in halfway. "Bro, our front scout has been contacted. no time left. They're pulling back. ETA is five. Enemy won't be far."

I paused to look up at him. "Which front?"

"Both."
Resistance
Chapter 30: Refugees

After lunch, Drae'kos brought me aside, saying that permission had been given for the two of us to visit a dragon village. He mentioned that the place he intended to go to also housed some human refugees. However, as a passing remark, he also implied that some of the dragons themselves were refugees too.

After tracking down Victor and Ren Jie to confirm the facts, I returned to the house with a truck.

As usual, I parked and popped my head into the house, calling out Fenek and Drae'kos. I put Atheros in charge of the house till I got back.

As usual, Fenek was skittish around the truck, and worried for my safety. Drae'kos just seemed excited.

Of course, I brought my pistol and rifle, while Fenek had his own rifle. I also wore a random pixelised camouflage jockey cap that I had found in the cab. I half suspected that it was mine anyway.

Drae'kos had no gun, since he had no idea how to operate one anyway.

All three of us chambered into the truck, and sat, with Fenek already holding tightly onto the seat, while Drae'kos looked over the dials and meters with interest.

I paused to scratch Fenek behind his horns, eliciting a reluctant purr from the brown dragon. He relaxed a little, but almost became a board when I started the engine. I chuckled, and revved the engine a little. I noticed that Drae'kos' eyes followed the dial for the engine RPM as it jumped up.

I chuckled. "You've seen nothing yet."

Drae'kos seemed confused, and watched as I put the truck into gear, and disengaged the brakes. "Why are we not moving?"

I smirked. "Oh, we will, don't worry."

He didn't get it, "Let's go, then. I've heard that these things can be faster than flying at times."

I tooted the horn and drove slowly out the town, waving at the guards as we left. Drae'kos seemed unimpressed. "If I were to take my native form and walk, I'll be faster than this thing!"

I glanced over. "You always go slow in the town. Safety matters."

"We're out of the town already." he replied, as we left the gates behind, "Turn left and then go straight. If this thing can go faster, I'd like to see it do so... Unless I have overestimated the power of technology..."

I turned as instructed, then prodded Fenek. "You ready?"

Both dragons seemed confused. Fenek replied, though I suspected that he already knew what I was going to do. "Ready for what?"

I gave them my toothiest smile, then floored the accelerator. With a roar, the engine revved, and the truck lurched forward. I had it in auto mode, so I didn't have to worry about the gears. Fenek growled at me. <You know that I don't like that!>

<Keep your scales on. I know what I'm doing, like I've told you oh so many times. Your turn to trust me.> I replied, while glancing at Drae'kos who seemed stunned at the sudden acceleration.

The moment was, however spoilt when the speed warning buzzer came on when I went over 50, and I had to pause to disable it.

As the countryside whizzed past, and a small mountain range loomed into view, I pointed at it. "That your village?"

Drae'kos nodded while glancing at the speedometer, whose needle was closing on the 120km/h mark. "Is that instrument accurate?"

I nodded while I adjusted the vehicle's course a little. I gave the fuel indicator a cursory glance. The tank was still more or less full. Nothing to worry about for now.

Drae'kos stared at the speedometer for a while longer. "Yes, this is indeed faster."

Fenek was quietly holding onto his seat for dear life.

We closed on the mountain range in the next fifteen minutes. I let the engine spool down on its own, as the truck slowed down. The rocky mountain face quickly resolved into a granite outcropping, dotted with caves and bound by fields, with a small cluster of houses at its foot. Here and there I could see livestock, and the occasional dragon. I spied a handful of humans too.

Of course, a small crowd had already gathered down the road, probably drawn towards us by the roar of the engine. By small crowd, I meant a bunch of dragons, most of which were easily twice the size of my house. They were of assorted colours and configurations, though none of them had the same strange colouration as Drae'kos. I toyed with the notion of asking him, but decided against it as it would have been considered rude.

Drae'kos asked me to stop in front of them.

I eased onto the brake pedal, and brought the truck to a stop in front of the lead dragon, a large blue male, with mottled yellow highlights, white horns, a cream underside and a pair of sharp cyan eyes that stood out against the darker blue of his scales.

"Wait inside, I'll go and speak with them first. They know me." Drae'kos added as he opened the door with some help from Fenek, and leapt down.

Of course, the truck becaqme the article of interest, and the other dragons clustered around, sniffing and prodding at it. I kept the engine running, and sent Fenek down to keep an eye on Drae'kos. Fenek gave me a mental equavelent of a livestream of what was going on.

Presently, Drae'kos was busy convincing the big blue dragon about the existance of the town itself. The blue, who had yet to say anything sat on his haunches and listened, but didn't seem convinced. When Drae'kos finished his pitch, he finally spoke, and I didn't need Fenek's help to hear what he had to say.

"You of all people should know of your own reputation. Fantastic claims are nothing without proof, and you bring no proof, save for one paltry piece of technology, and two friends. Do not give us false hope!" Came the reply, as the blue got up and got ready to leave.

I half wanted to get down and start arguing, but saw no point. It was not as if I had any additional proof. The crowd of dragons also began to slowly disperse...

I heard a growl, and Drae'kos assumed his full size, making the truck look tiny, and me to feel even tinier. "If you don't believe me, then follow us and see for yourself! Don't accuse me of lying when you have no proof of the contray!"

The blue, who was already in the midst of walking away paused, and his head snapped round on his long neck with a snarl. "Are you challengine me?!"

I had enough. They were on the same side and they were going to fight? Not on my watch. I half wanted to jump out, but decided against it. That would take too long. As the crowd gathered, I put the truck into gear and put my foot down.

The two dragons were already circling each other, growling with increasing volume. Fenek prodded my mind, trying to get me to stop. I brushed him aside as the truck hurled through the crowd and squealed to a halt right in between the two.

This, of course caused some commotion. I didn't bother to say anything, since both dragons were now glaring at me. I drew the pistol, stuck my hand out the top hatch and fired a single shot.

That, however, was enough, as it brought silence to the field. I stuck my head out, scowling. "You people are on the same bloody side. Fight for fuck?"

I received blank looks all round. I sighed. I really needed to be more aware of my audience... "You all fight for the same cause. You two should not be squabbling over such a petty issue!"

The blue growled, but Drae'kos stood down. The blue, however, refused to back off, and shot back, "He insulted my honor! I cannot let it pass."

I rolled my eyes. "And can you blame him? You insulted him before he insulted you. He simply wanted to prove his point. The issue here is the existance of the town; my town. If you don't believe him, why not take up his offer instead of getting worked up?"

The blue huffed, "And how do I know that this is all not a trap? For all I know, all of you are agents of the Council, and Drae'kos has been captured and forced to work for you!"

I made a face, then pointed at my hat, with my gun. "Since when did that council of yours use guns, and wear this kind of hat? And since when could any of you oversized lizards drive?! Your theory is more than a bit far fetched, I would think!"

The blue clammed up at my response, and sat once again. "Very well. But first, I wish to know who I trade barbs with."

I smirked, while holstering my pistol. "You wouldn't believe me if I told you."

The blue snorted. "I take it that you will not lie. I'll take your word as truth."

I nodded, and adjusted my cap. "Second Sergeant Keane Tan. At your service."

There was a period of silence, in which Fenek somehow appeared next to me. The Blue seemed to pause to consider something. Drae'kos walked over to him with a smug look on his snout. "Well, do you believe me now?"

The blue tossed his head and rolled his eyes. "No, but I shall take up your offer. Do I sit in that metal box, or do we fly?"

Meanwhile, I did a three point turn. However, given how large the crowd had gotten, it became a seven point turn.

By the time I was done, however, both of the dragons were already in their biped forms and waiting. Fenek got down to show them how to get up the back, before joining me in front again. I heard the blue shout from the back for the crowd to make way, and they listened. I reckoned he was their equavelent of a mayor or something.

I could feel the eyes of the crowd boring into my back as I accelerated on the way back to the town...

Of course, I was stopped at the gate by none other than Victor, who knocked on the window, which i wound down. "How many this time?"

I laughed. "One only. They don't believe we exist."

Victor vanished for a moment, presumably going to look in the back, before reappearing at my window. "Eh, he can't be cleared for entry, you know that."

I nodded. "I know. I'm just going to let him come down and have a look see. Then, we're off again. Oh, and send a note to the rest, we'll have to start worrying about fuel soon. The raids are turning up more and more vehicles, but less and less fuel."

Victor shrugged. "Yeah, I know about that. We're working on it. Anyway, the best we can give him as one round around the town."

I nodded, and shouted it to the occupants at the back. I received a slightly disappointed response that it would suffice, and I set off.

As we drove along the walls, I shouted back, about how the town was now independant, and under our own rule. I mentioned the presence of technology too, but held back on most of the details.

Eventually, I completed the round and poked my head behind. "Seen enough? There are more guns here than in any storehouse!"

I heard another muffled affirmitive, and a request to return to the village. Waving a goodbye to Victor, I complied.

However, as we sped down the road, I noticed a column of black smoke, and what sounded like roars in the distance. I slowed down, and looked to Fenek. "You see what I see?"

Fenek nodded, and I cursed. He shot me a disapproving look. "You should curse less. It is unbefitting of a dragon to be so vulgar."

I rolled my eyes at him. "That's not the issue here. The issue is that they look like they're under attack."

Fenek nodded, and looked to the passenger door. "You want me to go back and get help, yes?"

I nodded, but before he reached over to open the door, I stopped him. "Hold on. I need to confirm this first. Let us get closer."

With that, I floored the accelerator for the umpteenth time that day. The thin black line on the horizon quickly resolved itself into a thick column of smoke, while the sounds became distinctly roars. Above the area, the scenes of battle could be vaguely seen, with dragons fighting dragons in the air. We were yet too far to see the humans. I stood on the brake pedal, bringing the vehicle to a squealing stop with a sharp jerk. Two warbles of surprise from behind told me that I should have given fair warning first.

I turned to Fenek. "Go. Report to Victor. Ask for fighters, and transport. Expect casualties. Alot of casualties. Leave the tank behind to cover the town."

Fenek nodded, and grabbed his rifle before exiting the vehicle. He shot me a worried look, already knowing what I was thinking of doing.

However, my plans changed as we continued down the road at top speed, when I noted a crowd of people fleeing the village, human and dragon alike. Once again, I hit the brakes, cursing under my breath.

As the crowd approached cautiously, I killed the engine, grabbed my rifle and exited the truck. I hurried the two dragons out of the back and told them to wait. I received concerned looks from both. The blue, whose name I still didn't know asked about the battle, and expressed a desire to go and fight. Drae'kos expressed similar sentiments.

I looked over at him as I walked towards the ragtag band of refugees. "Request denied. It will be suicide. Wait for my men."

I subsequently walked over, still holding my rifle to come face to snout with the leader, a middle aged man. He looked tired, and his face was streaked with blood. His simple shirt and pants were torn and shredded at the hem. His slippers were practically gone. He looked to be of chinese descent, and his brown eyes showed fatigue. He held a sword, still dripping with blood.

However, upon seeing me, and my rifle, he tensed, seemingly ready to strike. I shook my head. "Stand down, I'm on your side."

The man sighed, but didn't relax. Behind him, the rest of the group stopped. I counted about twenty people, of assorted shapes and sizes, all carrying things, probably their livelihoods and belongings. The man paused to motion for them to stop, probably to make sure everyone got the hint, then faced me. "Are you sure? The moment you left, they descended upon us... Most of us can't fight, even the dragons, even though they don't look it. We barely got out, and those left behind are still fighting!"

I made a face and cursed. We must have been followed. "I see. No matter. I count five dragons, and about twenty humans. I assume you're all civilians?"

The man nodded. "What of it? Are we to be killed?"

I huffed. "Oh, fuck off! I'm not with that bloody council! Heard of the crazy-ass human-turned-dragon resistance guy?"

The man raised an eyebrow and gave me a skeptical look. "Yes, but that is just a rumour."

I folded my arms and resisted an urge to preen. "Well, lucky you, because it isn't. My name is Keane, and I'm here to take you to safety."

His eyes widened, and he lowered his sword a little, but still looked skeptical. "What if you're lying?"

I glanced at the battle in the distance. Things didn't seem to be going well for one side. Time was running out. "Look, I can recite the SAF pledge, or whatever later. Now, my priority is to get you lot to safety. Load up. Besides, no dragon knows how to drive."

The man seemed taken aback at my tartness, but nodded as I returned to the truck, to check and make sure that the back was clear. I managed to get everyone up within five minutes, and closed the tailboard myself. The blue, whose name was Faerrus, Fa for short, turned out to be in charge of the village, and took charge behind with Drae'kos. The five dragons looked to be bleeding from minor wounds, but it was evident that they were children.

As I got into the driver's cab and started the engine, I heard a chorus of shouts and warbles behind, presumably becaus this was a truck, and a new-ish thing. As I put the vehicle into gear, I heard the roar of more engines behind. As I did my U turn, three trucks sped past, on the way to the village, their backs loaded with armed men. I threw them a quick salute as they rolled past, then completed my turn.

I wound down the window and looked behind. "Everyone okay behind?"

I received a chorus of affirmatives, then shouted back, "Alright hold on. I'm going to floor this thing."

With that, I slammed the accelerator to the ground and the truck lurched forward. I heard yet more noise behind, and shouted over an apology. Meanwhile, Fenek materialised in the passenger seat, looking troubled.

I glanced over at him. "What is it?"

"They sent the men, as you saw, and the town hospital stands ready..." He replied, his voice trailing off...

There was something more. I could tell from his face. "What else?"

"A large group of dragons, at least ten were spotted heading towards the town. They will reach within two hours, according to the scouts, and they're not friendly..." Fenek replied, fear evident in his voice...

I growled and switched the truck to manual, playing with the gears to squeeze more acceleration out of the engine. "Then, we're in deep shit."
Resistance C30: Refugees
Here we go, chapter 30. Some excitement, and let's see how it goes for the gang heh...

Next chapter: fav.me/d808l2q
Previous chapter: fav.me/d7xjl9h
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An Update

Journal Entry: Mon Oct 13, 2014, 9:54 AM


Well, I guess I owe you people one of these, so here goes.

Yes, my release schedule has flown off the tracks, well flown off more than usual anyway. Mostly because I've been bouncing all over the place lately, and having work thrown at me. Also had a rather unfortunate accident that had me on crutches for about a week owing to a wound on my sole.

However, my real reason/excuse is that I have been thrown unceremoniously into the position of the chief of the yearbook committee for my company, so my weekends have been chewed up when I have to wade through photos and craft layouts for the book. The dateline is approaching, so this should fizzle out eventually. However, it also means that there is now a mad rush. 

I guess this means my extra chapters will be eaten up and I'll have to build up my lead again xP And yes, I'm still 10 chapters ahead. I know what happens next hahaha but please don't ask me about it. I don't believe in giving spoilers.

Aaaaanyways, I'm now a storeman, meaning that I take care of a store room lol. My pay has been cut too, but no surprise there. No combat pay and no risk pay anymore. Fair is fair. Doesn't make that big a difference anyway, since I'll be done with this nonsense in a few months (or weeks. I've been counting weeks.).

Anyways, if you people want to ask anything, go on ahead. Not like I'm going anywhere haha.

Tano'rath out.

Design by Koragi Artwork by OchreJelly
  • Mood: Tired
  • Listening to: Music
  • Reading: Random stuff
  • Watching: Time go by
  • Playing: Random phone games
  • Eating: army food
  • Drinking: Cordail

What shall I write next? 

33%
7 deviants said another one shot (Say TF or non-TF)
29%
6 deviants said the next chapter of Here Be Dragons
19%
4 deviants said a follow up of an old story
14%
3 deviants said GO AND STUDY LA!!!
5%
1 deviant said draw something

deviantID

Tanorath-drgn
Keane (Tano'rath)
Artist | Hobbyist | Literature
Singapore
Eh, yeah typical Singaporean here... mostly

I'm currently serving my time in the army, as dictated by the law. Will be done around December 2014. Long way more haha.

As for my vocation, I'm a combat engineer.

As for me, I generally like meeting people, and talking. I talk ALOT. However, I'm usually only online on skype, etc on weekends, due to the nature of my training and vocation. I also have a tendency to be extremely random at times, so do pardon me~

My hobbies include writing (obviously), reading and fiddling with hardware.

My main character defaults to a black dragon/drakonian (I've given up on correcting people over this so yeah), name being Tano'rath. The ref sheet is in the gallery somewhere... He means quite a bit to me, going deeper than just being a character. Enough said. SHall leave the details out and the ambiguity in for now, so yeah~

oh yeah, I have skype. Ask, and i will note you my username.

Twitter: Tanorath_Drgn follow me for nonsense~

Icon by :icondshain:

Tano'rath out.


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The-White-Dragon-97 Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thanks a lot for the :+fav: and the watch :hug: :dummy:

Much appreciated :icondragonhug:
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Skyder117 Featured By Owner Aug 29, 2014  Student Digital Artist
thanks for the mini fave-bomb
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Tanorath-drgn Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
ey no prob man hahaha
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Tm1990 Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2014
Hmm seams like your premium membership ran out.. Lets fix that.
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Tanorath-drgn Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
ey thanks!
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Tm1990 Featured By Owner Aug 18, 2014
You're welcome :) was going to give 12months for your birthday but could not afford it at the time so i just did it now :)
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Tanorath-drgn Featured By Owner Aug 27, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
ohh i see. thanks very much. really appreciate it!
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Bahogar Featured By Owner Aug 6, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks for the fave!
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Tanorath-drgn Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
np~
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Thanks for faving my Happy Dragon :happy: 
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