Wolfpack Squadron- Chapter 10 COPYRIGHT NOTICE: Star Fox and all related characters, locations, and vehicles are copyright (c) 1993, 1998 by Nintendo of America, Inc. Used without permission. Wolfhound, Jadis Ross, and Adrian Coyote are characters based on real people, and I've asked their permission to use them in this story. Wolfhound character copyright (c) 1998, 1999 by Joel L. Morgan Jadis Ross character copyright (c) 1998, 1999 by Jadis Ross. Adrian Coyote character copyright (c) 1998, 1999 by Adrian This story is copyright (c) 1998, 1999 by Joel L. Morgan, Jadis Ross, and Adrian. No part of it may be reproduced without the express and mutual consent of the above named authors. Chapter 10 1815 hours, Cornerian Standard Time Sickbay, C.D.F.C. Vindicator.... Wolfhound paced back and forth through the corridor in front of sickbay like an expectant father. "Wolfhound, calm down, will ya?", Cordy asked. Wolfhound shot her a glance of pure ice. "Calm down? I CAN'T!! Not...not until...", he stammered, at a loss for words. The medical officer finally walked out. "Lt. Redstar, I presume?" "Yeah.", replied Wolfhound, anxiously. "What is it? Is she...?" "She's all right, but she's still out of it. If that shot had been a couple of millimeters off either way...And, I'm not real sure she's out of the woods entirely yet." "Can we see her now?", Adrian asked. "Sure. She's still unconscious, though." The four active members of Wolfpack Squadron filed in to see their comrade. Wolfhound took one look at her and almost collapsed. "What's wrong, Wolfhound?", Cordy inquired. "Jadis...doesn't deserve this. I mean...she risked her life just to bring the squadron back...for me...", Wolfhound replied, tears welling in his eyes. "I know...but these things happen.", Darius said. "Hmmmm...", he muttered. "What is it?", Wolfhound asked. "You've grown..attached to her, haven't you, Wolfhound?" Darius inquired. Of all the times to ask that question...Wolfhound thought. "Ummm...I.....I mean....well..", he answered, sheepishly. Damn, I was never good at admitting how I really feel about anything, he thought. "Ah-hah, "Cordy exclaimed "I think he has..." Wolfhound turned around to face his team. "Why would you all ask me that, anyway?", he asked, trying to change the subject. "Because, we have to know what we're fighting for.", Darius stated. "About eight months ago, Captain McCloud was shot down over Corneria City and was in a coma for two days. Worse, the Lylat system was being threatened on two fronts." Wolfhound nodded. He'd heard about the battles with a former Venomian admiral--and about the giant ball of fire that almost hit Corneria. "Well, Fox, after that, refused to leave her side. It took nothing short of a miracle to bring her back from that." "What does that have to do with me?", Wolfhound asked. "Are you fighting for the freedom of the Lylat system? Are you fighting for her? Or, is it both? You must know that, Wolfhound.", Darius stated. Wolfhound took a deep breath before he answered Darius. "Up until now, I thought I was just fighting for Lylat. I didn't even stop to think that there was another force driving me--a force that drove me to take up that mission to go look for her. I know I said that she's a fine pilot, that we couldn't afford to lose another, and that was the reason--but it was more. I couldn't afford to lose her, either. All my life, I've denied what I felt when it counted most. When the squadron first got together, I thought her to be as cold as the void between the stars. But, as I got to know her better, I realized that she was just haunted by her past. I also learned to have faith in her abilities--but more importantly, I learned to have faith in her. Maybe, it's because back on Terra, I never really fit in, and here, I could find someone...." Wolfhound, by this time, had talked nonstop for about ten minutes. He had held back that long. "To sum it all up, I still wasn't sure if she'd take up that mission to come back for me. And that she did confirms my assessment of her--and what I feel..." He walked over to the side of the bed where Jadis lay, still unconscious. "Jadis...", he whispered, "you risked your life to rescue me, even endured capture by the enemy." He genlty grasped her paw. "I swear that I will repay that sacrifice, with my own life if necessary. I..." He stopped, at a total loss for words, completely drained emotionally. "You don't have to say it now, Wolfhound.", Cordy reassured him. "But...what if she doesn't make it?", Wolfhound asked. "She'll make it.", Cordy answered. "Now, we have to complete the mission. It's what Jadis would want us to do." "I know." Wolfhound whispered. He sighed heavily. "All right, let's go. This one's for Jadis, guys!" As the rest of the team left, Wolfhound grasped Jadis' paw one last time. I hope I come back to tell you how I feel--and you live long enough for me to come back...he thought as he left to join his teammates. ----------------------------------------------------------- "All aircraft report!", Wolfhound barked. "Darius here, I'm fine." "Cordy here. Everything's A-OK." "This is Adrian. Let's kick some tail!" Wolfhound wondered why everyone sounded like Star Fox. "All right, then. Adrian's father said that it's the seventh large asteroid that houses that generator. Let's take it out, guys!" "I've got dozens of enemy blips onscreen. About a hundred and forty-four. Pretty heavily defended, I'll say.", Cordy noted. "No, really?", Wolfhound added, sarcastic. "Everyone, switch to nova bombs. That should cut down on the opposition here. Remember who this is for, team." Wolfhound paused at the thought of Jadis.. "Let's kick into overdrive." The four fighters blasted away at anything that moved. Soon the enemy fighters were clear. "Adrian, what ARE you doing?", Wolfhound inquired as Adrian broke off at a dead run for the enemy frigate ahead of them. Must have damaged its concealment field earlier...so he saw it and wants revenge... Wolfhound thought. "I'm taking those scumbags out!", Adrian replied, confirming Wolfhound's thought." Nova bombs locked and ready to fire. Two away!", he shouted as he peeled away from the frigate and the bombs detonated. The frigate went up in a blaze of glory. "Guess you got your revenge, Lt. Coyote--that frigate matches the ID of the ship that captured us.", Darius remarked. "But, we're all out of bombs-except me, and I've only got one left.", Wolfhound cautioned. "One, out of twenty?", Adrian questioned. "I wasn't fully loaded.", Wolfhound corrected. "Here goes. Locked and loaded. One away!", Wolfhound shouted as the bomb found its mark--but the asteroid was unscathed. "DAMN!!", Wolfhound cursed as he surveyed the damage--or rather, lack of it. "Three more squadrons inbound!", Cordy yelled. "How? We took out the frigate." "Must be a base here, too. ETA two minutes." "Let's get to it! Status report!" "I've got 35% shields left.", Daruis commented. "I've lost a wing, and down to 22%", Cordy reported. "I've still got 48% shields.", Adrian added. Like we have a snowball's chance in hell here....Wolfhound thought. Still.... "All right, then. Let's take as many out as we can." ----------------------------------------------------------- Sickbay, C.D.F.C. Vindicator.. "Uhhhhh...where am I?", Jadis moaned, groggy from the effects of the sedatives that she was given. "Lt. Ross, you're finally awake, I see.", the doctor stated. "Where's Wolfhound?, she asked. "They left on a mission about an hour and a half ago." Jadis slowly got up. "I....I have to go there...", she said. "You can't...not in your condition.", the doctor said flatly. That was a big mistake. Jadis pushed him out of the way--she had regained a pretty good deal of her strength--and headed towards the fighter bay. Soon, she reached the controls of the Fire Wolf. "Control, this is Lt. Ross, requesting clearance to launch." "Lt. Ross, this is Captain McCloud. Request denied. Jadis, you're in no shape to fly right now." "I have to go...." Jadis answered, her tone hard as steel. For a long moment, the channel was silent. Finally, the reply came. "I heard that a lot from Fox. OK, you're clear to launch. Good luck, Jadis..." "Thank you, Fara.", Jadis replied as she rocketed out of the fighter bay. ----------------------------------------------------------- "I'm getting hammered here!", Adrian complained as he tried to shake two fighters from his tail. "My shields are at 8% and falling!" "AAARRRGGGHHHH!", a voice shouted over the comm. Wolfhound looked up--just in time to see Cordy's Arwing disintegrate into a ball of fire. Damn, not another one..... he thought. "We're down to three pilots now--and they have about a dozen." If there is a God..., Wolfhound thought, I hope He's listening right now... "Wolfhound, I'm picking up another fighter, ID unknown, dropping out of hyperspace 30 seconds dead aft of us.". Adrian noted. "Friend or foe?", Wolfhound asked. A voice answered him on the comm--a voice that if he had to live this moment a thousand times over, he'd still never expect. "I see you're having some trouble, here." Lt. Jadis Ross replied. "JADIS!!!!", all three remaining pilots shouted at once. "Geez, you guys forgot already?", she quipped, "But, why three?" "We...we lost Cordy.", Wolfhound answered, his voice grim. "And, the rest of us are getting pounded." The channel was silent for a minute, then Jadis responded, "All right then. Let's get this done. For Fara--and for Cordy. I've never tested these new lasers before. I'm going to now." She flipped a switch by her laser controls and heard motors hum as the laser on the underside of the Fire Wolf locked into position. Just in time, two fighters atempted to engage her. Jadis pulled the firing trigger and watched as a hail of laser bolts hit the fighters so fast, it was as if they had been hit by a single, deadly beam. "Wow.", Jadis said in astonishment. "Well, this will be seeing a lot more use.", she said as the fighters detonated. Wth the help of the Fire Wolf, the rest of Wolfpack Squadron cleaned up the opposition. "Where's the target, Wolfhound?", Jadis asked. "Five kilometers...hard to port.", Wolfhound answered. "And..welcome back." "It's nice to be back...though I wish we hadn't lost Cordy.", Jadis replied. "So, I see you've softened a bit.", Wolfhound quipped. "Not that much. I'm not that easy, Wolfhound. Guess it takes finding your faith in yourself." "You're welcome, Jadis." Jadis arrived at the target and fired a nova bomb. "What? Wait a sec....that's it! Wolfhound, it's too heavily shielded to take it out from here--we need to get inside somehow..." "How do we do that?", Darius questioned. "Got it! Guys, fire at these coordinates.", Adrian shouted as he transmitted the necessary information to the rest of the squadron. "Jadis, would you like the honor?', Wolfhound asked. "My pleasure.", Jadis replied as she opened fire with her new weapon. The rest of the squadron targeted the same point that Jadis had hit, making a hole in the shield big enough to fit through. "Why can't we just bomb it now?", Adrian asked. "Because it would take about 15 or so to blow this place--and I only have about 7.", Jadis replied. "Adrian, scan for a door or something.", Wolfhound ordered. "Already have, and I found one 18 degrees to starboard.", the coyote answered. "Let's knock, shall we?", Jadis remarked. "My thoughts exactly.", Wolfhound said as they flew through the point Adrian had found. As the team landed, Jadis got out of her fighter--and almost collapsed where she stood. "Guess I'm still a little out of it.", she muttered, "but, I'll manage." Wolfhound turned to her. "This time, let's hope that we all make it back in one piece. Let's move out!" ----------------------------------------------------------- END OF CHAPTER 10 ------------------------------------------------------------------------ ------------------------------------------------------------------------ ------------------------------------------------------------------------ ------------------------------------------------------------------------ ------------------------------------------------------------------------