Posted 14 February 2005 - 02:40 AM
Ko put his pen back in his pocket and his book back in his bag. He stretched slightly to get some kinks out, then walked over to where Dias was sitting. "Hey, Paulo." Ko sat down himself and shifted his rifle so that it wasn't digging into his side.
Lifting his head up from his notations, Dias looked to Ko "Ah, hey... Derrick?" He still wasn't used to his colleagues names. "How are you going?"
Ko grinned wryly. "Going ok, going ok. Patrols aren't finding much. We seem to have drawn the short stick with respect to action." Ko dug into his pocket for one of the pseudo-rancid food bars that they had been given.
Dias grinned too, and, putting his datapad back in the bag, moved a bit to find a comfortable position. "Heh, tell me something, Ko. Did I fared well in that ship invasion? I know I'm not really a 'newbie', since I was in the Beta team before moving to Kappa, but I never boarded a harvester like that"
Ko tilted his head slightly, as he did sometimes when he was thinking. "Well, you came out alive, didn't you?" Ko laughed slightly to himself. "Yeah, you did alright. You're not a combat newb, no, but the style is a little different here. It's all well and good for the HazardOps boys and girls to be getting bogged down - they have the firepower to get out of the ugly situations. We don't have that fallback, so we always have to be pushing. It's a bit different in outlook, that's all."
Dias seemed thoughtful for a moment, and then grinned. "Oh, well... I guess I can get used to that. But changing subjects... I took a look into the older mission logs and weapon specifications, and realized something. Are you an engineer?"
"Educated and trained in Canada, but not certified... I haven't exactly been back home to get my papers certified, you know?" Ko grinned slightly, but deep down the comment hit a bit of a sore spot. The choices made... "Why do you ask?"
"I saw your name in the specifications of an auto pistol. Heh, I may be a 'combat medic', but that doesn't means I don't like weapons. In fact I always wanted to create my own firearm project, but I lack the skills and patience to do it. How much time it took you to design that pistol?"
Ko grinned. "You don't want to know. A long time. I had been thinking and drawing and doing all sorts of stuff for the years we've been here. I played around with the elements based on pistols I knew about. I worked heavily with the Glock series, but man, they are ugly and apparently they've been pretty ugly in the past."
Dias laughed. "Ugly, you say? Heh, VERY ugly! But prettyness never won battles as far as I know. There's a weapon back in my homeland that I must tell you... it looks worser than an ascidian doing strip dance, but it's one of the most versatile weapons I ever saw out of X-Com! Also, I think I need to congratulate the guy who engineered the paratrooper carbine here. This is some seriously good weapon"
"The carbine, Scientist Har'du'lak, a good developer... and a good project leader, he drove his guys hard. But... uglier than... impossible! That's pretty damn ugly. What weapon is that?" Ko scratched his nose. What weapon could be that damn ugly?
"Heh, that was a semi-prototype gun I was trained in the military school." Dias chuckled. "It was some kind of weird laser rifle mixed with a normal rifle. Wires all over it, weird lights bliping around, a 'bzzzzzz' sound everytime you put your finger in the trigger, and that thing was hard to carry around! Heh, the worse: even looking like that, the designers said they couldn't fit any cover in the weapon without rendering it unpraticable. It was rugged enough WITHOUT any cover or armor" He took some brief breath. "And it eventually made into full-scale production"
Ko laughed out loud. "Good god. That's horrible. As you say though, I guess it works... still, I'd be scared to take that sucker anywhere where I thought it could be damaged. You don't want to be the one finding out that it wasn't as rugged as you thought." Ko grinned slightly as he thought aloud, "man, it's noisy too. Not good for us, sort of."
Still laughing, Dias said: "Heh, I guess they at least got to remove some of the excessive wiring and sound before putting it into production, but it was still very ugly last time I got to see one. Can you imagine how bizarre is a weapon that can fire both laser and normal AP rounds?"
"Bizarre is right. I wonder what the advantage is... I mean, really, a bullet or a laser will put down a man with the same efficiency. Well, nice to have options I guess." Ko thought about the bulk... He certainly didn't want to be the one carrying something like that, though every member of the team had multiple weapons.
"Yeah, but it comes in handy when you're getting out of ammo, or when you must face some specific threats. The rifle could also fire HE rounds, but the clip was smaller, and I wouldn't risk to carry around explosive stuff right unde a laser core! Ammo cooking off is the least thing you want to see into the battlefield." Dias shook his head. "Anyway, the 'thing' ended up as the standard-issue rifle in my country! I can't understand how" He laughs.
"You're from Brazil, right? Remind me to never hang around with your country's army, I might die laughing. They'd probably shoot me, but I'd probably still be laughing." Ko laughs a bit at the thought. "We've got our fair share of ugly looking weapons here too. If you ever have time, check out some of the Ascidian heavy weapons. Yeah, they are effective, robust, etc, but man, I can't imagine how anyone would carry them around."
"Hah! Yeah, but never mess with our markmen! They're pretty good." Dias listened to the comment about Ascidian weapons, and grinned. "Weeell... it becomes easier to understand how they carry that when you realize the standard users are gorillas"
"It's a matter of finesse. They don't have any when it comes to combat. That's what they learn from us..." Ko ignored a curse and the small rock that bounced off of his pack. "Finesse is the key to everything we do. We can get Alpha to come down and mow through the enemy and do all sorts of brute stuff, but our job is to get things done without destroying everything around."
"I guess you're right." Dias dodged a second small rock that missed Ko and flew past him. "It's good to be stealth and to destroy the least possible amount of stuff. Specially when you're planning to USE the stuff later" He grinned, remembering his times in the academy. "That's why I left the military: blowing everything up wasn't with me"
"It's just a slightly different brand of blowing stuff up here." Ko winked. "At least here, you can feel like you're doing something, and you are. Nobody is on a pointier, lonelier end of the stick than we are."
Dias bursted up laughing. "You know what? I was thinking about the perfect weapon for the Alpha team in any stealth mission: supressed grenades! Then they could use all that hack-and-slash and bomb-them-all tactics they love without risk of being found"
Ko laughed, then tried to suppress it. He coughed, only partially successful. "Suppressed grenades... Meh. You know what? Once you've made the critical noise, it doesn't matter how silent you are afterwards. When the crap hits the fan, you use grenades if you think you need to. Sometimes, and I stress sometimes, it can be necessary."
"Well, yeah... it may be necessary, but having to run around with the aliens on your heels after a supposedly stealth infiltration mission is ruined by someone blowing the first big head he find with a grenade is not the kind of mission I want"
"True, true, but Alpha wouldn't do that. They more familiar with all-out battles where the lines are cut and dried, and that's what they excel in. On a stealth mission, well, they wouldn't do that unless they were already in trouble. Man, it's been over a year since I've really fought with them... A long time."
"I've only saw their mission logs and profiles. Heh, they got past some really weird situations, eh? Have we fought with them many times before?"
"I mean, 'fought with' as in same battle, not as in shooting them. God forbid it ever comes to that." It had been... how long? "Wait, no, a couple of us did once. And there was onboard the Alien ship... so maybe we did a couple of times. It was always different. Good fighters, but finesse... that is key."
"I know the meaning of 'fight with' in that sentence..." Dias replied, annoyed. "I'm not from an english-speaking country but I can understand you" Putting the rant aside, he grinned. "Hmm... I guess we could learn something from them too, but I doubt it could be any useful"
"Sorry, you sounded like you might have interpreted it the other way, because we've done that on a vocal basis, ha ha. Anyway, they're on Paronnen now, and we are here... we don't even really know where here is. I wonder that..."
"You wonder that...? Hmm... hey, that's true. We don't even know where we are" Dias sounded astounished. "Now I guess we'll have to work well if we want to get out of this planet here alive, and in one piece."
Ko nodded briefly. "Well, we'll take care of our little piece of the operation. That's our job. We carry out our missions, hassle the Aliens a bit, but most importantly, we stay alive." Ko looked over quickly at a motion he saw in his peripheral vision. "Sorry Paul, I need to go bug Ghost. I think he's going to want us to pull something off pretty soon. We'll talk later, eh?"
"Sure thing, Derrick. It was good to talk with you. Out of combat, you know... See you later." Dias picked up his datapad again and resumed reading his notes. So many new things to get used with, so little time...