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"A country cannot simultaneously prevent and prepare for war."
―Albert Einstein


Paul O'bryne kept his head down and moved fast as Zemka troopers moved from house to house.

Roundstone was being checked thoroughly for any form of resistance; apparently they had linked the attack on the convoy to Roundstone and where on full alert. It was no regular search, no "Can I come in, ma'am"s about it, the bashed in the door, raided houses, killed resistors, and violently searched anyone on the street.

Worse yet, Paul was carrying a large cache of explosives on his back and had a sidearm on his belt. All things added up to a bad situation. He had to get out of town, and fast. He needed only to make it as far as the edge of town for the pickup, but with the Zemka soldiers all around him, his chances of making it that 90 feet were becoming slim to none.

Quite suddenly, a hand reached out from behind him and pulled him to the ground. A Zemka with four legs, that, he had to admit, looked a lot like a Centaur in a Zemka full body suit, Was now leaning his large upper body down toward him. Without thinking, he pulled his H&K USP. He fired a shot, denting the helmet slightly, and was picked up and thrown across the street, through a pub window.

He struggled to get up, only to find another Zemka soldier picking him up by the scruff of the neck. The four legged Zemka trotted into the pub, a black bladed scythe like knife in his hand. He placed it over Paul's throat.

"Put him down, Herrignol!" yelled a distinctly alien voice. The four legged alien abided by the command, and Paul turned his head to face him.

His first impression of the creature who stood on the other side of the room was that he was a rock.Then he saw the eye that protruded from the cone shelled husk that should have been where a humans head would be, and the thin, toothless mouth, all within a tiny gap in the hot rock of a body. He didn't wear the black armor, but, then he thought, one really didn't need to when your a rock. The odd thing was, he let off a large amount of heat, especially from the gaps in his rocky skin, where flames burned brightly.

"Now..." said the alien, "tell me where your friends are."

"Dunno what your talking about," Paul began, but a burning pain erupted from the hand of the alien. It was as if he was having several cigarettes put out on his face.

"Now, I know you know where they are, organic, and you will tell me or you will die!"

"Not today, you gormless twat!" yelled a voice from behind him, and suddenly a group of laser rifle shots fired from the doorway. Paul covered his eyes, only to find that this wasn't one of the Zemka aliens shooting, but in fact a lad in British grade Zemka armor, with no helmet.

At first Paul thought someone was taking the piss out of him, the British in this uniform were the rank-in-file human versions of Zemka. Then he saw the symbol on his chest. There in plain site was the image of the worlds most elite Special Forces team; the SAS. With the sword drawn eloquently down the chest plate, the wings that spread from the blade, and the banner saying "Who Dares Wins". Additionally, each shoulder pad had a different insignia on it, the left the traditional British flag, the right bearing the Royal Coat of Arms. Even though Paul knew in the back of his head that even the SAS were now rank and file, he couldn't help but feel that the cavalry had arrived.

Then suddenly time sped up. One of the Zemka turned and started firing at the SAS trooper, and the other, the one that looked like a Centaur, grabbed him and raised him to him, so that they were face to face.

Suddenly, a laser from the direction of the bar shot across the room and into the Centaur Zemka's helmet, and Paul was dropped to the ground in the confusion. Looking over at his savior, he was amazed at what he saw. It seemed the same man as the one at the door was there, in Zemka armor, once again without a helmet, holding a different yet recognizable laser rifle. But wait, he realized, this one didn't bear the paintings of the SAS, but that of the main British army. On one shoulder was the painting of the tiger insignia of the 4th British Infantry Division, the other, once again, the British flag.

Suddenly, amongst he confusion, Paul realized he was free. he grabbed his pistol off the ground and made a run for the loo, the only cover left. When he was within the cover of the threshold between the loo and the pub, he stuck his head out to see how the fight was faring.

And what he saw was amazing, two men, fighting two Zemka, in an evenly matched fight! It was almost unheard of. One Zemka was to much for the Irish rebels, but two were easy pickings for these two Brit twins. Oddly enough, they weren't using they're laser rifles anymore, but had switched to standard L85A1s, or at least, thats what it seemed to be.

He couldn't figure out how the bullets were penetrating their armor at first, but he suddenly came to realize that the bullets must have been forged from one of the invader's own metal, because the bullets were jet black. By the time he had realized this, both Zemka had fallen to the ground, armor pierced all along their upper torso.

Then, the former army twin turned to his direction and said, "Its safe to come out, mate. We aren't like these wankers."

And suddenly all his hatred for the British for turning themselves over returned. "Why should I beleive you? I thought all you brits went Zemka!"

"Not true. 'Course, that's what the Zemka are telling everyone that. Truth is, theres more to the plot than meets the eye. Take us, we fought at the SAS rebellion. My brother, Alec, was in the SAS, and I was on leave going to see..."

"Bogies coming from all sides. We better quit the talking and get moving, Dave."

Dave reached and pressed a button on his collar, and a carrying case opened from the slight hump in the back of the armor. "Here, take... whats your name again?"

"Paul O'bryne." he said.

"Paul, then. Take this MP5." he said, withdrawing the gun from his armor. "I trust you know how to use it?"

"Too right. But whats with this ammo?" he said, holding up the black makeshift bullet.

"Oh, that? Energy weapons don't work on Zemka armor, and neither do bullets. That is, unless..." he said, removing the clip from his L85A2, "we melt down their armor and make handmade bullets..."

Suddenly, four rogue laser shots flew into the room. "Bloody hell, Dave, lets get the fuck out of here!"

"Can we go to your base?" ask Dave, as they stacked up on the doorway.

"I suppose thats our only option, isn't it."

"Yeah, pretty much. Just figured common courtesy dictated I asked..."

"Yeah, Dave? Well, in the SAS they taught me that shooting the shit in a hot zone gets a man killed. Can we get bloody going already?"

And so they went. Alec threw a flashbang of a kind that Paul had never seen before out into the street, and after it went off, they moved. All the Zemka were doubled over, struggling to get their helmets off, making it easy to pick them off as they ran for the mountainside. When they reached the end of the road, they took cover as a band of thirty Zemka came flying down the street, the biggest one, maybe fifteen feet tall, threw anentire bloody car to barricade the group. Paul threw a frag into the batch and a group of aliens scattered, all laying down fire as only a creature born and bred as a soldier could.

The three took wreckage from cars blasting apart as cover, but for once in Paul's fights with the Zemka, he was winning. The euphoria he gained by taking a giant spider like alien down with a three round burst straight through that almost impenetrable helmet was such an adrenaline rush that the rest of the fight was an exciting blur, taking a few down, taking cover from laser fire,. taking another down and moving up the street to whatever little barricades they could use, then repeating worked for the first time since the Death of his wife, and every faceless helmet was the helmet of the bastard who did it. Finally, without even realizing, they had reached the end of that road, and five Zemka remained, but he was fine, the pain in his jaw from being burned didn't even phase him, he just kept going on, using his instincts and his aim. Another down, the Brit's take two more, and all thats left is the fifteen foot monster reptile in full Zemka armor, carrying his own one handed energy weapon that was like a cannon, and a little rodent like Zemka with no helmet, barking orders at the creature that towered over him like that of a skyscraper did a two story building.

The three put all their fire into the giant lizard, and it swayed from the bullets, screaming and hissing in an alien tongue, till finally a group of shots to the legs made his hind legs give out, and causing enough pain to make him drop a weapon that would make a full grown man have to heave it like a rifle. Paul began to fire on the rodent alien, but suddenly there was a bright light and he was gone. Paul knew this to be a transporter; he was gone for now, back in his ship like the coward he was.

Alec flew up to the giant lizard, rounded him, jumped on his back, and plowed a dozen bullets into his head, and jumped off as the giant aliens body heaved and fell to the ground.

"Well, that was exciting." said Alec, stretching his neck muscles.

"Yeah, haven't seen resistance like this since the rebellion. You Irish chaps must be doing something right, getting them all centered here. You never see more than a few leading Zemka in a small town like this unless theres big trouble." said Dave, reloading his rifle.

Paul look around to see a jeep had just barely survived the action a few hundred yards down an alley. "Well, we can take that up to the base. I'm sure the boys'll like to have to men like you with 'em."

"This ain't over, laddie. We've got to get your men ready for the onslaught that'll surely come, now that they see your fighting like this."

"Well..." said Paul, smiling slightly, "Morty always said he needed more men who knew how to handle a gun. Considering I'm actually up there in the organization and I was a school teacher, he's gonna love you boys."

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