“It’s okay…I know. I can get a bio amp replacement if we make it through this.”
“Hey, you guys over there?” Agrest’s voice shouted. “Get over here now!”
Ziko pushed himself off the tree, they all grimly watched for a moment as what remained of his arm was quickly chopped and consumed by the blade grass and its acid once the suit’s structural integrity had been broken down. “I hate this fucking place.” It seemed to be an understatement from Ziko as he watched his arm get eaten by the grass.
The three walked over to Agrest, his huge sniper rifle leaning against the tree. Raist realized it was Agrest’s shot that killed the diving bird before it killed them.
Leio was sitting on the ground, her knee looked crushed, and everything under it was gone. Her other ankle was broken, bent back up to her calf.
“What are you going to do with me?” she asked, looking straight at Raist. He felt his stomach drop a bit with the implication of one entirely real option he could take to save the rest of the group time. This was a woman he was intimate with, yet the mission was now at risk of being compromised due to both her legs.
“What happened?” he asked, trying to buy some time to think this through.
“The ankle was from the fall, and this,” she pointed to her missing calf and the crushed knee, “was from that bastard over there.” She indicated a large dead beast. “Heh, damn. I’ve never seen such a hostile fauna before.” She leaned back while they crouched down to inspect her damage. Even with her mutilated legs, she still was amazingly lusty, along with a slight independence still obvious in her countenance. “No wonder they put their fortress here. Secure the skies, and let the planet take care of the ground.”
Raist could feel everyone waiting for him to decide what they were going to do with the obvious change in plans the injuries and the planet presented to them. Maybe they were especially waiting to wonder if he would leave Leio, or kill her. The latter might be humane.
He stood up. “We are not leaving anyone behind.” He looked to Ziko before continuing, “I am taking you off Assault-role. It’s too dangerous to not have a combat-able person not firing, so because of your injury you are the one who will carry her. Leio, you are staying on the Sweep. The rest of us are changing our weapon configuration. Agrest, switch to your Silvershot for faster shots, I’m moving down to the ‘Saw and Leio you go with whatever you can shoot while still staying on Ziko. Z, you can either go weaponless or take a one-hander.”
“And me?” Philira asked.
“Stay with the Plaz-Shot. It is obvious to us now most of the fighting is going to be close range. I need Agrest and Leio to be on drone watch out. We are not that far in raw distance to our target so we are going to press on. I do not think resting is a wise decision.”
He walked over to Leio. “You know what we have to do right?” he asked.
“Of course, get it done already.”
They dragged her to an area devoid of the grass where it looked shot up from the battle. He handed her the handle of the SSAW with its softer grip, pressing it towards her mouth, she opened it and bit down on the handle.
“Hold her,” he commanded. Philira and Agrest knelt down and held her body and arms down.
“Heh,” she muttered out of her jammed mouth, turning her head towards the sky. “Never…get used…to this.”
Raist knelt down by her foot, grabbing the misplaced foot, and, without waiting for any okay or any delay, pulled downward and backward. Immediately her leg started flailing while the other two struggled to hold her down, letting out a painful ‘guuuaaaaa!’ through her gritting mouth. It was clear she was trying to maintain control despite the massive pain and compared to a scream most would have let out, her moan was fairly benign.
He continued pulling back until it was straight, and pushed it softly back into the semi-correct position. He held her foot still for a moment while she stopped moving; she spit the gun handle out. “I’m okay…”
All three of them let her go as she sat there. “Should be walk-able in about a cycle. I feel my nanites reforming the bone already.” It was quiet for a moment before she continued. “Well, stop staring at me already! As much as you guys like to do it, let’s get this going.” He reluctantly managed a smile at her pride hiding her shame of slowing the group down.
She lifted an arm up and Raist grabbed it, hauling her body over his shoulder then transferring her to Ziko where she sat on his shoulders. She used her one leg to wrap under his shoulder to his back and was using her hips to hold onto his head.
“Not pretty, but it will work. Z, can you still function?” Raist asked, handing him a pistol for his one remaining arm. The chemicals in them and their advanced nanites could keep them functioning at conditions worse than this, but still wanted to make sure.
“You mean with that hot ass wild woman riding him all night?” Agrest joked.
“I think his head is facing the wrong direction for anything wild,” Leio said, giving Ziko a tight squeeze.
“Damn Raist, no wonder you like her. I can tell she’s probably into bondage,” Agrest responded.
“Don’t make me squeeze his head off.”
“Why would you punish me for your two perverted minds?” Ziko said while he practiced moving around a bit with Leio on his shoulders.
“I think he’d like that.” Agrest added, “Either getting his head squeezed off, or your ‘punishment’ that is.”
At least their spirits…and chemicals… were still high enough to joke. Raist looked at the Spreading Squad Assault Weapon he was holding in his hands, its neon blue lines pulsing an incredible power just waiting to be unleashed. He was practicing drawing his knife out of the SSAW Philira had hidden in it in the event of a surprise. Raist was glad their spirits were still good for now though. He knew how bad missions could get.