Nightfall

Samuel stared at the data pad then said “this is a strike mission and kill the people responsible right? Do we have the go for that from command? I have no problem with that. I just want to know how much trouble I will be in when I pull the trigger.” Samuel looking him in the eyes his face blank emotionless his eyes could.

Jhonen nodded. "We've been cleared to use whatever level of force we deem necessary. And I highly recommend deadly force when we face The Wendigo and his Pack. These are the type who prefer to capture their prey alive to keep them suffering as they eat them..."

Samuel got up form his chair and gave a nod to Doctor Brennan and Jhonen. Turning to Doctor Brennan “I know you are a combat medic, in this mission I have to know if you will pull a trigger and kill them no regrets” Samuel says coldly. Staring as if he sees right through her. “I can not have any hesitation on this mission it will get us killed.” Samuel moves towards the door. Then stops “I will not hesitate they are already dead. Jhonen, I and Tempest are leaving now I am ready see you in the settlement of Typhon.”

Jhonen tried his best to hide his amusement at Samuel's grilling of Maxine. Not because he found his behavior funny, in fact he felt insulted that Samuel would question his judgement on who he'd brought onto the team, but because it was obvious the man didn't know Maxine all that well. Jhonen had heard the story of how Maxine joined The Dragoon. The simple fact she was a Dragoon should've been proof enough she was up to the challenge.

Jhonen shot Maxine a knowing glance then shrugged. "Very well, see you at Typhon."

Once Jhonen had finished speaking with Maxine he went down to the garage. He hardly ever went to the perches, the other dragons didn't like how he smelled. He quickly got onto his jet cycle and started off down the mountainside until he was into the rocky desert below and off to Typhon.

---
Later, That Night

Anna and Crystal made their way into the canyon. And the deeper they went the darker it got. It was hard to move in the narrow space so they had to take care while landing. The site they found themselves at was desolate. Three large cargo transport trucks, old Colonial Military vehicles no doubt pilfered due to the lack of any identifiable markings, were now smoldering wrecks.

Anna hopped off of Dastan and brought up her rifle and switched on the flashlight attachment. She scanned the scene and could see spent shell casing glittering in the sand all around the trucks. Worse yet, the sand was damp from blood.

"This was a slaughter." Anna said as she continued to investigate the area.

"Who do you think these people were?" Crystal asked.

"I think they were with the Syndicate." Anna speculated. She shined her light to a discarded pulse rifle lying half buried in the sand. "They tend to buy up a lot of old military hardware from gun runners and the like. The question is: who hit them?"

They continued to look through the wrecks. More signs of battle and death, though no bodies. Just blood. The cargo had been taken as well. Anna paused when her flashlight went over something jutting from the side of the frontmost vehicle's armor. She frowned and stared at it. It looked like a large bolt from a crossbow, with nasty spines pointing backwards that indicated a desire to have the bolt be extremely painful to be pulled out. The fact it was embedded half and inch into the metal door of the cargo truck also made her uneasy.

Then Dastan and Midnight began to act agitated. They'd caught wind of something.

Anna readied her rifle and began to scan the canyon walls. "Company!" She hissed at Crystal in a hushed tone. The dragons continued to growl and started to pace a bit. Dastan's scales on his back made a sharp rubbing sound almost like that of a rattlesnake.

"We need to get out of here." Anna said, slowly making her way back to Dastan as he continued to scan the area for signs of the enemy. Yet there was nothing. Crystal was doing the same.

Then there was a sudden silence that descended into the canyon. It felt like the air got heavier. Even Dastan and Midnight seemed to fall quiet.

Once the girls reached their dragons Anna covered Crystal as she got atop Midnight. Then she swept her light in the spot behind her where the fading light of the fires ended. And her flashlight illuminated the figure of a man.

It looked like a man wearing some sort of animal skull for a helmet and leathery skins. He had what looked like a large axe in his hands. He was slowly walking towards them. She hadn't even heard him.

"Stay where you are!" Anna shouted. "Or I will shoot!"

The man didn't respond. He simply kept approaching.

"Last warning!" Anna shouted.

The man puffed out his chest as he took in a lungful of air and then proceeded to let out the most inhuman sounding cry Anna had ever heard. It was deafening and echoed through the canyon walls. Anna blood froze but she stood her ground and kept her rifle trained on the man.

Then the cry was answered with another. Then another, and soon the canyon was full of similar monstrous cries.

That was when all hell broke loose.

The man charged at Anna, waving his axe high over his head. Anna fired and he went down after a few shots. But before she had time to think a spot of ground near where Anna was standing exploded in a puff of sand and another man in a similar animalistic outfit erupted from a hole in the ground. In fact, numerous little hovels had been dug all around the wrecked vehicles, and their occupants were now rising up from them to attack the two dragoon.

This was an ambush.

"Crystal! Run!" Anna shouted as she switched her rifle to full auto and began to fire bursts at the approaching attackers. She'd heard of these people before. They were called The Pack, led by a man known only as The Wendigo. They were a group of raiders that the dragoon had been working on expunging from the south-western region for some time now. Nasty group. And Anna knew they had just fallen into serious trouble.

Dastan let out a roar and swung his front claws at an approaching Pack member who was wielding some sort of hooked anchor attached to a large chain that was snaking its way from beneath the sands. The Pack member went flying, shrieking like a banshee before colliding with the canyon wall in a wet crunch.

They were gonna try to keep the dragons from flying away. Anna realized.

"Hurry, Crystal! Go! They're trying to ground us!" Anna shouted as she shot another Pack member running towards her dragon with a chained hook. The rifle slide locked back, out of ammo. She quickly ejected the magazine and slapped a fresh one in. Her training had been such that this was practically muscle memory at this point.

Dastan continued to swipe at the incoming Pack members, sending many of them flying into the canyon walls. But he had little room to move in the canyon. He could've taken most of them out with a firm swipe of his tail, but at the moment he was having to fight while taking Crystal and Midnight into consideration. It was such that it didn't take long for one of them to plant a hook between his scales. And as more began to seemingly pour out from the canyon walls, the were quickly getting overwhelmed. A couple more managed to hook him, and then mobility was drastically hindered. He let out a thunderous roar and continued to fight in spite of this but it was proving hopeless.

Anna let out a scream of rage and started taking out the ones who had managed to hook her dragon. Now she was enraged. How dare they attack her dragon! But sadly this lapse into rage left her open, and a smaller Pack member emerged from the shadows with what looked to be a blowgun made from old ship piping. She felt the sting in her neck and then the edges of her world went dark.

Her legs fell out from under her. Dastan continued to roar defiantly but soon they were able to keep his head locked into place long enough to smash a large glass container full of some sort of vaporous concoction near his snout. He took in the vapors and his body began to go limp as well. Then soon both he and Anna joined one another into unconsciousness.

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