Soooooooo, that time of year is upon us! Hope you guys enjoy this PJW oneshot!---Twitter: https://twitter.com/MercCommandArchive: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive.html?tags=Pararescue%20WitchesOther Quests: https://pastebin.com/eTUmEmRb---"Sir? Captain Pierce?"You're jolted awake, years of training and field experience unfortunately conditioning you to be a very sensitive sleeper to anything that wasn't airplane engines. You open your eyes and immediately regret it as the searing brilliance of the Californian sun sets your vision alight. "Agh, I'm awake. I guess we're almost there?" You grunt, rubbing your eyes. "That's right, sir. We're due to land shortly." The C-130 crewman politely informs you. You glance out the window and see and endless sea of sand that was California's inland desert. Nestled away in that sea was a gray concrete oasis. A sprawling network of airstrips, helipads, and hangars. Edwards Air Force Base. An odd place to call out an Army Special Forces member like you. What could they possibly want with you here?>Then again, you're pretty used to not being told the full story.>You feel Dad's shadow lurking behind you again.>Other
>>3396468>>You feel Dad's shadow lurking behind you again.
>>3396468>Then again, you're pretty used to not being told the full story.
>You feel Dad's shadow lurking behind you again.
>>3396468>You feel Dad's shadow lurking behind you again
>>3396468You can already feel that sense of unease, of Dad's shadow lurking just behind you. After all, you were Andy Pierce, son of the great General William Pierce. A World War III war hero with deep connections to the West Coast matrons through Mom. Who wouldn't want to bend over to do favors for you?Now, it wasn't like you blame Dad for any of this. He himself had been content to let you do you go your own way, but when the Air Force Academy acceptance letter arrived in the mail without you having ever sent an application, you already knew people would try to get in Dad's good graces through you. That's why you had completely avoided the Air Force altogether and went Army instead, where you figured there would be the least amount of overlap. And you liked you time here. You weren't given special treatment and had to work your way up like everyone else. That's why this mystery assignment made you feel so uneasy. What were the brass planning?You disembark from the C-130 in a bit of a haze, the only thing you really hear being directions to report to Hangar 3 for further briefing. Actually, now that you think about it, your twin sister Amelie and older foster sister Misono were stationed at Edwards as well. Maybe you could sneak a quick visit...>Go check up on Amelie. She's always been a bit helpless without you.>Go visit Misono. Surely you'll beat her in a duel this time.>Better just head to Hangar 3 and see what this is all about.>Other
>>3396649>Better just head to Hangar 3 and see what this is all about.
>>3396649We are never to old or professional to miss out on an HONORABLE DUEL with our favorite older sister.
>>3396649>Go visit Misono. Surely you'll beat her in a duel this time.
>>3396649>>Better just head to Hangar 3 and see what this is all about.
>>3396649>>Better just head to Hangar 3 and see what this is all about.As much as I want to duel, we have work to do.
>>3396649Well, Amelie was working with the F-19 squadrons stationed here. Lots of experimental and aggressor work, though you were pretty damn sure those superplanes were quietly used in actual operations from time to time. Misono was a full blown aggressor witch, and quite popular among the training community since she brought actual eastern style martial arts and close combat techniques into play. As an official USAF witch, the USAF could always have access to her and wouldn't have to politely ask Japan or Korea to loan them a few witches to participate in highly sensitive exercises stateside. But, well, despite your desire to be able to see them again, it was business first. You head over to Hangar 3, just down tarmac. There are a couple of guards posted at the door, but they don't take any action to stop you as you head inside. The interior of the hangar, meanwhile, was rather sparse. There wasn't anybody immediately visible, but you could see a projector screen and a number of folding chairs set up, so there was definitely a briefing planned. And at the back, you noticed a large curtain blocking off the rest of the hangar, the type used to conceal whatever work was being performed behind it. Some kind of classified fighter or Striker?>A little peek wouldn't hurt. >Better just to stay put and wait for the welcoming party to arrive.>Other
>>3396791>Better just to stay put and wait for the welcoming party to arrive.
>>3396791>>Other>Play Crimson Lane on our phone to kill time, a popular gacha game from china based on witches
>>3396791>>3396806This with >Better just to stay put and wait for the welcoming party to arrive.
>>3396806Do you think there is games/shows in-universe with male!versions of famous witches?
>>3396862Or their siblings in the case of pairings like Chuck and Shirley.
>>3396862>>3396892jpg's of tiddy bring in the whale bucks, not cock
>>3396791You just casually take a seat on one of the folding chairs. You have the urge to take out your phone to pass the time, but resist it. You've had your ass chewed out enough times for being caught carrying devices with cameras built into them around classified areas. It was not an experience you were willing to risk reliving. Soon enough, though, you catch sight of a girl casually walking into the hangar, wearing a simple jacket and shorts. At first glance, you see that's she's really young, probably only barely past minimum recruitment age. Then again, with witches, you could never be totally sure of their actual age just by looking at them. After all, Mom could (and accidentally has) passed for Amelie on more than one occasion. The witch casually takes the seat right next to, despite all the other seats taken, and stares ahead at the blank projector screen. >Try talking to her?>Better just stay safe and quiet.>Other
>>3396922>>Better just stay safe and quiet.
>>3396922>>Try talking to her?"Are you an air force witch, or did you get brought in from another service, too?"
>>3396922>Try talking to her?
>>3396922>>Try talking to her?
>>3396922>>Try talking to her?Why are we here? Just to suffer because of our parents?
>>3396922"Hey, so you're part of this mystery assignment, too?" You ask the witch. "Yeah." She says simply. "Why else are we both here?""Well, my name's Andy. Andy Pierce." You introduce yourself."Army Special Forces." The witch notes and looks up to see your briefly surprised expression. "Your unit patch.""Oh, right." You breathe a sigh of relief."Warrant Officer Mia Weiss." The witch introduces herself. "US Air Force Special Tactics."You freeze for a second there. Special Tactics was the same field Dad had been in as a Pararescueman. Was there a possibility that this witch would recognize you?"Is there something wrong?" Mia asks, her expression still cool and calm. If she was a fangirl, she certainly wasn't showing it. However, before you have a chance to answer, you hear footsteps as more people started to arrive. You turn to see a small gaggle of officers, scientists, and observers from all fields scurrying in, led by a man you recognized all too well. Colonel Ramirez, a living legend himself among SF circles. "All right, let's get this started then!" Ramirez says jubilantly as everybody starts taking their seats around you. "Good to see our two stars are already here!" You just blink as the entire pack turns to eye you and Mia, making you incredibly uncomfortable. "Captain Pierce, Warrant Officer Weiss, I'm sure both of you have a lot of questions." Ramirez grins. "Not particularly." Mia shrugs. "I have no idea why I'm here, sir." You admit. "Well, Captain, that's because SOCOM has decided to further test hybrid units composing of both witches and conventional soldiers." Ramirez answers. "As you've seen, the Navy and Air Force have a rather easy time of it, but integrating witches alongside the regular boots on the ground infantryman has always been an issue that's plagued the Army and Marines.">I... guess?>Don't we already have tank strikers?>Other
>>3397063>>Don't we already have tank strikers?
>>3397063>Don't we already have tank strikers?
>>3397063>other>warrant officer aviator>witch integration into boots ops that isn't conventional strikers or tankers"So is she going to be flying some new rotor-heli-striker-thing, sir?"
>>3397063>>I... guess?Tank Strikers cannot into AA very well IIRC and as cool as >>3397090 sounds, I'm pretty sure that ain't it either.
>>3397122If it turns out to be a rotor witch project you're backing me up on doing a panty raid on the witch's barracks later.
>>3397135That would likely have our local friendly neighborhood ... WTF is Loki anyway?
>>3397152We are a green beret lost in the land of the wild blue yonder. If we don't return to Ft Bragg (or colorodo or whatever other SF group we're in) with a minimum of one panties then we'll be laughed out of the debriefing when we get back and our SF team will never take us seriously again.
>>3397063"Don't we already have tank strikers for that?" You wonder. You've had more than op or training exercise working in conjunction with tank witches. "And regular strikers can hover, which makes them easy to provide close air support.""Ah, while tank and air strikers do have superior tactical mobility, they both have their own sets of weaknesses that were never properly addressed in terms of supporting a larger conventional infantry force." Ramirez picks up a remote and the projector activates. "Air strikers are incredibly flexible, but they're incredibly sensitive to weight. Air witches are limited to magically enhanced small arms which, while effective for their intended role, are highly inefficient in situations where wide area suppression or targeted destruction of hardened targets is required."You glance at the projector screen, showing exercise footage of air witches hitting various targets with a series of handguns and rifles, easily destroy "soft" targets like light vehicles and people, but having trouble or utterly failing to handle "hard" targets like tanks and bunkers, which had thick enough armor to shrug off even magically enhanced small arms."Tank strikers, on the reverse end, have issues with carrying too much weight." Ramirez continues. "While they should have the same tactical mobility as an infantryman, the reality is that due to a tank striker's small size, all of its weight is focused on two narrow points, making them unsuitable to maneuver on soft or uneven terrain."Sure enough, on cue, the footage swaps to an army training exercise. Grunts were slogging their way through a muddy field, making faster progress than a pair of tank witches, their heavy tank strikers quickly sinking into and miring in the mud. "It's only until now that our friends in DARPA have been able to develop a new striker type solely dedicated to supporting ground operations in any environment, any time. Hit it!"It's then that the curtains draw back, showing what looked to be an absolutely massive striker."Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the latest development in striker combat, the Armored High Mobility Striker Concept. It's a flight striker capable of mounting heavy weaponry accessible to all aircraft in the US inventory in a variety of configurations."The projector image switches again, showing Mia herself donning this new striker, which looked more like a flying tank than anything, but it made sense to how it was warn. The bulk of the unit was mounted on her back, where all of the magical engines and weapons racks were located. The footage went on to show Mia and her new striker firing a wide array of weapons, ranging from heavy autocannons to missiles to rockets, pounding every range target into dust.There was immediately a lot of hushed yet excited whispering from the gathered audience. Their attention was definitely grabbed now. >That's pretty awesome.>Looks too good to be true. What's the catch?>Other
>>3397203>>Looks too good to be true. What's the catch?>>Other"So how quickly does it kill her sparkle power reserves?"
>>3397203>>Looks too good to be true. What's the catch?
>>3397203>>That's pretty awesome.>>Looks too good to be true. What's the catch?>>3397216THIS >>> "So how quickly does it kill her sparkle power reserves?"That is the most important question out of any we could ask.
>>3397203>Looks too good to be true. What's the catch?
>>3397216Yeah sure, throw my lot in for this as well.
>>3397203"Seems like there's a catch to this, sir." You speak up. "How quickly does it kill her sparkle power reserves?"Mia shoots you a look. Perhaps annoyance at you questioning her abilities. "Well, that's a complicated question." Ramirez nods. "Naturally, all this extra weight means extra magical power needed to keep it in the air. Thankfully, our eggheads managed to develop AHMS to work off a sort of magical "ground effect". The exact science escapes me, but the gist of it is that the closer to the ground it is, the less magic needs to operate. We've locked the maximum allowable operating altitude at 500 meters for safety reasons, but it is capable of exceeding that limit.""I am also specially suited to the operation of this striker due to my ability to actively draw additional magical energy by increasing my metabolism." Mia adds, apparently in an attempt impress you. "So any concerns about my magical endurance are academic.""All right, all right." You nod. "So how do I fit in to all of this?""The DoD has determined that the AHMS be loaned to SOCOM for covert field testing." Ramirez states. "This is our only working unit and having this sort of firepower in such a small and mobile package is ideally suited to supporting special operations in hostile environments.">That seems to make sense.>I was picked because of my father, right?>Other
>>3397282>>That seems to make sense.With a touch of >>I was picked because of my father, right?
>>3397282>That seems to make sense.
>>3397282>>That seems to make sense.>>other"So, where are we going?"I hope they don't care about the nationality of our unit leaking, because there's going to be a fucking MILLION us branded pixy stix packages littering the battle field as she double fists them mid flight.
>>3397282>>>That seems to make sense.
>>3397282>>That seems to make sense.
>>3397282"That seems to make sense." You agree. "But how do I fit in to all this?""We need someone on the ground who can act as an liaison between ground forces and Mia. Given your past operations in conjunction with witches from various service branches, you were the natural pick.""I see." You nod. "So I take it we're in Edwards to train?""Exactly." Ramirez nods. "We'll start your familiarization exercises tomorrow, so you've go the rest of the day off. Take that time to get settled in.""Yes sir." You nod. "And the rest of you, we can proceed on to the logistical roadmap for this unit..."Ramirez continues on his little impromptu lecture, and you take the opportunity to slip away. Mia follows you out. "Well, I guess we'll be working together starting tomorrow." Mia notes calmly. "I hope you can keep up.""Is that a challenge?" You raise an eyebrow."An observation." Mia counters. "Anyways, I have a physical training session to get to, so I'll see you tomorrow."And with that, Mia jogs off, and she casually waves to a few personnel as she passes them. Guess she was a regular sight around here. As for you...>Get a closer look at that striker.>Go see Amelie.>Go see Misono.>Other
>>3397342>Go see Misono.
>>3397342>>Go see Misono.Run to big sister from another mother to beg her to kick our ass into shape so we can impress the new girl.
>>3397342>>Get a closer look at that striker.
>>3397342>Go see Amelie.
>>3397342>>Go see Misono.
>>3397342You decide to go pay a visit to Misono. In fact, it's probably been at least a year since you had last seen her in person. Being the only genuine Japanese aggressor witch in the USAF meant she was constantly on the move from one training exercise or wargame to another. Thankfully, you're able to get directions from one of the base guards, and you make your way over to where Misono usually spent her time outside of striker training. The gym. Immediately, you could see signs of her presence when you see numerous men and witches nursing some rather nasty bruises on their arms and legs. Misono was never one to pull her punches (or sword slashes) during sparring matches. Something you've learned all too well. However, what does catch you off guard is seeing Misono facing off against Mia. Was this the training Mia had been talking about? Misono was already in her starting fighting stance, standing upright,her hand firmly gripping her sheathed katana. Mia, on the opposite side of the mat, looked to be wielding a wooden replica of a more western style longsword, the massive weapon securely gripped in both her hands. The two girls stare each other down as the spectators, both regular staff and witch, immediately start putting bets down."So, who do you think's gonna win?" One of the spectators asks you. "Odds are 3:1 in Misono's favor.""That low?" You frown."Mia over there is one of the top ranking witches here. She's come the closest to taking her down, so naturally everyone's excited!" The spectator grins. "So? Who've you got money on?">Misono>Mia>I don't gamble.>Other
>>3397400>MisonoNever bet against family.
>>3397400>>Misono>>"SIS IF YOU WIN I'M BUYING DINNER"
>>3397400"Misono, of course." You grin, throwing in a five dollar bill. And right as you say those words, a loud buzzer whines indicating the match has started. Almost instantly, Misono draws her sword and slashes outward in one smooth motion, her signature flash draw. Mia however is quick enough to spot this and backsteps, avoiding the horizontal slash. Mia responds by bringing her longsword coming down in downward arc, forcing Misono to sidestep and pull back her blade.Mia immediately follows up with a spin, using that momentum to swing her longsword into a wide horizontal arc. Misono responds raising her katana, bracing the palm of her hand against its flat side as it takes the force of the impact with a loud THUNK."Impressive, you're much faster now." Misono grins. "But still predictable.""Hardly." Mia grunts as she pushes more, trying to break through Misono's guard, causing her feet to slide back on the mat ever so slightly."Foolish." Misono sighs. She immediately tilts her blade at an angle, causing Mia's sword to slide off and away from her. Misono then tries to take advantage of the opening and slashes outwards. Mia once again narrowly manages to stay ahead of Misono by stepping forward and ducking down, rolling under Misono's slash. The moment she gets back up to her feet, she resets her grip on her longsword and goes for a thrusting attack aimed directly at Misono's gut-But Misono already knows how to counter such a move. She raises her leg and stomps her foot down directly on Mia's blade, driving it into the mat. Her followup strike is swift and merciless, smacking her training blade right into Mia's shoulder with a loud WHACK, eliciting an empathetic wince from the entire crowd, including you. "A valiant effort Mia, but not quite enough." Misono grins smugly. "You still have that bad habit of committing too much power on your strikes."Mia just glowers as she massages her now bruised shoulder. Meanwhile, the crowd passes their winnings and losses to each other and disperses. You get ten bucks out of the whole deal, which isn't a bad investment. "Ah! Andy! I didn't see you there!" Misono's face instantly lights up when she sees you. "Were you here long?""I saw the whole thing." You grin as your older sister lunges forward and hugs you."Then what did you think?" MIsono asks, still giddy.>Flawless as always.>Still going a bit overboard on the strikes.>Other
>>3397477>Flawless as always.
>>3397477>Still going a bit overboard on the strikes.
>>3397477>>OtherChallenge her to HONORABLE DUEL (for training purposes and totally not just for horsing around with the sister.)
>>3397489>>3397477FOR MY HONOR
>>3397477>>Still going a bit overboard on the strikes.Also rolling with >>3397489
>>3397477"I think it's time for another rematch." You grin. "Oho? Are you looking to be punished so soon after reuniting?" Misono grins. "I'll gladly take the chance to show my adorable younger brother his place.""Brother...?" Mia blinks. "Prepare yourself then, Brother!" Misono grins as she tosses you a training katana, already all too familiar in your hands. "Mia, give us a countdown!""Um, right." Mia blinks. "Ready..."Misono takes up a new stance, her sword already unsheathed and held in both hands, the end pointing directly at you. A more aggressive stance than last time, to be sure. Knowing Misono, the critical moment was always the opening move. Misono won the majority of her duels with her first strike. "Set..."Your mind is already racing. If Misono could be counted on anything, she was always relentlessly aggressive in combat. Very rarely would she ever let the enemy gain the initiative."Go!">Stay on the defensive. You already now how she moves, you just need to find an opening.>Go on the offensive. She's used to being able to control the flow of the battle.>Other
>>3397521>Go on the offensive. She's used to being able to control the flow of the battle.
>>3397521>>OtherUse a technique she hasn't seen you use before. Throw sword at her.
>>3397521>>Go on the offensive. She's used to being able to control the flow of the battle.
>>3397521>>Go on the offensive. She's used to being able to control the flow of the battle.>>3397529This, END HER RIGHTLY
>>3397521The moment Mia gives the start signal, you're already bounding the distance, slashing your sword directly at Misono in an upward swing. Misono was quick enough block the attack with her own sword, which you were expecting she'd do. She was too skilled to get caught off guard by an attack like that. But at the very least you forced her on the defensive."Oh, my dear younger brother is already making such aggressive advances?" Misono grins. "What brutish manners has the Army been teaching you?""Teaching me how to win, of course!" You respond as your blades remain locked.>Try to power through Misono's guard. >Feint and get another attack in.>Other
>>3397552>>Feint and get another attack in.>>OtherBONE CRUSHING BEAR HUG
>>3397552>>Feint and get another attack in.
>>3397552>Feint and get another attack in.
>>3397552>>Try to power through Misono's guard.
>>3397552You feint trying to break Misono's guard by pressing further into her blade but not committing all your strength into it. Misono braces herself to compensate for your push, but blinks when she realizes you haven't put all your energy into it. Instead, you quickly quickly pull your blade away, recycling your motion into an overhead downward swing. Misono's sword was out of position, there was no way she could possibly block-Misono then drops her katana and claps her hands together, trapping your katana's wooden blade right between her palms. "I never taught you ALL my tricks, little brother~." Misono winks."Clever girl." You manage to utter before Misono sweeps your legs with a low kick, knocking you flat on your back. "Still, you've definitely improved since we last met." Misono smiles as she offers her hand to you, pulling you back up to your feet."Yeah, well, not good enough." You grunt. "At least you didn't hit me in the face this time.""Well, you didn't give me the proper opening, so you spared yourself that punishment." Misono giggles. Mia meanwhile is just staring agape at the quick but decisive battle. "Ah, so you're supposed to be Mia's partner in her new unit, aren't you?" Misono smiles. "Now it makes sense why they called you here." "I didn't even know you two were related." Mia's still completely out of it."Ah yes, I suppose I haven't mentioned it before." Misono agrees. "We're not in the same units, or even the same service, so we don't see each other quite so often...""Ohoho, so my dear brother is consorting with our older sister again, is he?" A familiar, haughty voice emanates from behind."Oh, hey Amelie." You give your twin sister a little wave. "Honestly." Amelie crosses her arms, her face wracked with annoyance. "We haven't seen each other in all this time and the first thing you do when you get here is go straight to Misono to get your face beaten in, again! Don't you care about your beloved twin sister at all?"She was looking just as regal and refined as ever. Fitting of her callsign "Princess". >Sorry, it's been a hectic day>Amelie, quit acting so dramatic.>Where's that retinue that always follows you around?>Other
>>3397592>Where's that retinue that always follows you around?
>>3397592>>Where's that retinue that always follows you around?
>>3397592>Amelie, quit acting so dramatic.
>>3397592>>>Where's that retinue that always follows you around?
>>3397592>Sorry, it's been a hectic day
>>3397592>>Where's that retinue that always follows you around?>>Other"If I knew your airforce hippy fanclub wasn't around I would have visited you sooner."Combining sibling and service rivalry in one delicious package.
>>3397592"Where's that retinue that always follows you around?" You raise an eyebrow. "If I knew your Air Force hippy fanclub wasn't around, I would have visited you sooner." "Hmph!" Amelie huffs. "They're simply taking care of important duties at the moment! That's all!"You wonder why Amelie was still acting so haughty when you realize that Mia was still present, still technically an 'outsider'. Misono also seems to realize this and quickly intervenes."Mia, how about we go over our previous match and see what we can learn from that?" Misono asks as she puts a hand on Mia's shoulder and gently guides her out of the gym."Ah, that would be very enlightening." Mia nods as she lets Misono lead her away."Is... is the coast clear?" Amelie whispers."Yeah, doesn't look like there's anybody around." You nod. "Andyyyyyy!" Amelie squeals as she practically dive tackles you straight in your gut, wrapping her arms around you. "OhmygoshImissedyousomuch!""I missed you too, Amelie." You laugh as you ruffle her hair. "Seems like you're doing well out here.""I. Want. To. Die." Amelie groans. "Even the middle of a stupid desert people are still sucking up to me! It's sooooo annoying!" You just roll your eyes and continue to headpat Amelie. If you thought you had a hard time living under Dad's shadow, Amelie living under Mom's was a hundred times worse. How could any girl match Mom, who was literally perfect in every way? Those were big shoes to fill, and a burden Amelie didn't deserve to carry. It was a weight that caused her to have some... odd qualities. Such as covering for her social anxiety and awkwardness by projecting an air of superiority, all to keep others at arms length from her. It's worked well for her so far... though maybe a little TOO well. "Isn't that what your fanclub is for?" You point out. "Well yes, but even so, people still keep trying to get close meeeee!" Amelie whines. "I opened my locker and found a confession letter in it, and I had to fight from throwing up!""Did you even read it?" You ask. "No, because if I tried, I'd probably ACTUALLY throw up." Amelie groans and thrusts a envelope into your hands. "There! See what it says!' >Fine...>You gotta learn how to read these yourself...>Other
>>3397626>Fine...>You gotta learn how to read these yourself...
>>3397626>>Fine...>>otherRead it out loud dramatically.
>>3397626>You gotta learn how to read these yourself...
>>3397626"Fine..." You say, taking the letter. Looking at the glitter and the pink paper, you could immediately tell that it was most likely sent by another witch. Both Mom and Amelie seemed to attract a lot of attention from both sides of the field, you suppose.However, before you can open the letter, the door bursts open. With a squeak, Amelia quickly reverts back to her "public" face as Colonel Ramirez barges in. "Sorry about this, Captain, but it's urgent." Ramirez says grimly. "Follow me." "Er..." Amelie starts to say something but you cut her off."Don't worry, I'll be back soon." You assure her and you follow Ramirez out as he leads you towards the tarmac. On it, you could see an C-130 loading up for takeoff. There was a large item also being loaded in the rear cargo ramp, and despite the large canvas tarp draped over it, you could immediately tell from the outline that it was the AHM Striker."Sir, what's this about?" You frown. "I thought exercises were tomorrow.""Change of plans, soldier." Ramirez grunts. "We just got a Priority One extraction call.""Why us, then?" You wonder. "It's complicated. I'll brief you on the plane." Ramirez responds gruffly as the both of you march up the loading ramp. You could see Mia already present, as well as quite the number of weapons and munitions."Can you refit the AHMS in flight?" Ramirez asks one of the techs."Yes sir. This system is completely modular." The tech nods."Good, then get us in the air, ASAP." Ramirez then turns to you and Mia. "I'm sorry about this, but as I said, a situation's come up."Ramirez then brings out a small map, with several marks and circles on it."We've been keeping eyes on the Martian undersea transfer stations ever since they went dark. We've had suspicions black market groups have been using these stations to smuggle Martian tech. The CIA's been investigating and had an asset in place, but they've been compromised."Ramirez then pulls out what looks to be a recon photo of a small flotilla of ships. "Our target is this frieghter. It's flying a Thai flag and registration, but it's not matching up with any known ship. It's also being escorted by what we believe are civilian vessels converted into gunboats. This is some serious opposition that requires serious firepower. But this is still a CIA op and the US can't be seen mobilizing conventional forces.""Which is where Mia comes in." You grunt."Exactly." Ramirez nods. "Besides the asset, which we're codenaming Unicorn, there are no rules of engagement. Administer any level of force you deem necessary to secure Unicorn.""How can we tell them apart?" Mia asks, observing the picture carefully. "Unicorn has been instructed to release purple smoke to mark their location." Ramirez notes. "There's not time for a proper landing, so you'll both be airdropping.""Loadout?" Mia continues."We've got loadouts for wide area suppression or targeted destruction." The tech notes.(cont)
>>3397647"Wide area suppression has a pair of 7.62 miniguns and a pair of high capacity rocket pods." The tech continues. "Targeted destruction comes with a 25mm bushmaster on the right side and a Hellfire missile rack on the left.""Wide area suppression would be effective on the gunboats." Mia notes. "But if the opposition has any sort of heavy armor, we'll be in trouble.""If they have access to Martian tech, that's a distinct possibility." Ramirez concedes. "But we don't have a lot intel besides what the drone captured, unfortunately. Pierce, it'll be your call.">Wide area suppression.>Targeted destruction>Other
>>3397649>OtherCan we mix and match? We won't be as effective in either one, but the flexibility could be worth it.Switch a rocket pod for a Hellfire missile rack.
>>3397649>Wide area suppression.
>>3397649>>Wide area suppression.I have faith in our ability to improvise if we have to deal with hard targets.
>>3397649You know what, this thread has gone on a tad longer than I thought it would, so I think we'll wrap things up on Monday, the REAL April Fools Day! So I'll see you all tomorrow, or later today, depending on your timezone!
>>3397667See you soon, Merc!
>>3397667Thanks for running Merc!
>>3397649"Let's get the heaviest firepower we can get." You say. "If they really are smuggling Martian tech, we have no idea what they might be packing.""You heard him." Ramirez grunts at the techs, who immediately start cracking open munitions crates and loading the Bushmaster and the Hellfires. Carefully, of course.Mia, meanwhile, had already pulled off her shoes and was lowering herself into the striker, her slender legs cleanly slotting in to the dual sockets. A massive striker unit then begins to hum and glow as magical energy runs through its circuits.The techs quickly finish their loading and give a thumbs up."You've got eight hundred rounds for the Bushmaster and six Hellfires!" The tech reports. "Make 'em count!""I will." Mia nods. "What's our ETA to drop?""Three minutes." Ramirez says as he tosses you a parachute. "No time for a proper landing. It'll be air insertion for you.""And extraction?" You wonder."The Agency already has a helo inbound, you just have to clear the way for it. And if that doesn't work, Mia's striker can be used as an emergency.""It's not really designed for it, so I don't recommend it." Mia warns as her striker continues to hum. "All right, we're over the drop zone!" Ramirez shouts as the rear ramp of the C-130 lowers, exposing you to the harsh air outside. "Go go go!"Mia nods as her striker rises up in the air, and shuttles backward until she's down the ramp and clear of the craft. You do a quick equipment check on your parachute and equipment, take a deep breath, and take a running leap out the ramp.Your body is immediately slammed by hurricane winds as you fall towards the earth. Mia is already in a controlled but rapid plummet and down below, you could make out the distant silhouettes of the enemy flotilla, the large freighter in the center like a bullseye. "What's the target priority?" Mia asks. "Weapons are loaded and armed.">Pick off the gunboats and distract them.>Clear the deck of the freighter so I have a landing zone.>Other
>>3399892>>Pick off the gunboats and distract them.
>>3399892>Clear the deck of the freighter so I have a landing zone.
>>3399892>>Clear the deck of the freighter so I have a landing zone.
>>3399892>Pick off the gunboats and distract them.
>>3399892"Clear the freighter deck!" You call out. "I need a clear area to land!""Roger that." Mia says, with a hint of enthusiasm, as if she was looking forward to his. Down below, you could see Mia's massive striker descend on the freighter. Bright, brief flashes of gunfire and tracers light up the deck and lance up at Mia, but her shield easily repels the bullets. And even with the wind whistling past your ears, you could hearing the thundering booms of the 25mm Bushmaster as it starts tearing chunks out of the freighter and its crew. A normal 25mm was enough to pulp a person, bug a magically enhanced one, well, just left goopy stains on the deck. With the deck clear, you deploy your chute and starting angling yourself towards the freighter. Thankfully, the ship was so big, you could easily touch down on it.However, the gunboats were just beginning to shake off their shock and begin opening fire, heavy machine gun tracers lancing up at the sky and slamming into Mia's shield. You could even catch sight of MANPADS being brought out. These guys were definitely prepared. "Mia! You got MANPADS painting you!" You warn."My shield can take it."Mia assures you as she turns her Bushmaster on the freighter's bridge, filling the entire structure with 25mm lead.>Trust Mia's word.>Order to break off and go evasive.>Other
>>3400055>Order to break off and go evasive.
>>3400055>>Order to break off and go evasive."You can take it, but that's no reason to waste your energy. We might need it for dealing with heavy targets later."and/or"Misono disapproves of this action."
>>3400055>>Trust Mia's word.
>>3400055"Break off and go evasive!" You bark. "That's an order!""...roger." Mia grunts. You see her striker shoot off in a burst of speed before pulling a 180 degree turn and strafing laterally as she sprays the gunboats with autocannon fire. You note that her strike didn't exactly turn like a dime like normal air strikers would. There was definitely a lot of weight and inertia behind every movement, so she was more like a floating truck than any sort of aircraft. Still, Mia was doing her job drawing enemy attention. You unclip your parachute and don't even bother trying to roll it up, instead getting your M4 rifle up and ready to engage any targets. Fortunately, though, Mia did a good job clearing the deck. You didn't see any hostiles for the moment. But you didn't see any purple smoke, which was concerning. Where was Unicorn? You had their emergency frequency, but using it might give away both of your locations if these guys had any sort of competence in signals intelligence.>Wait for Unicorn to rendezvous with you.>Try to radio Unicorn.>Go belowdecks to search for Unicorn.>Other
>>3400168>Go belowdecks to search for Unicorn.
>>3400055>"Misono disapproves of this action.">>3400062
>>3400168>>Go belowdecks to search for Unicorn.SNEAKING MISSION ON A CARGO SHIP
>>3400168>>Go belowdecks to search for Unicorn.Crew Expendable?Are we gonna find a nuclear device onboard?
>>3400168>>Go belowdecks to search for Unicorn.
>>3400168You immediate instinct is to head belowdecks to search for Unicorn. Even though the ship was massive, there were a few places you knew you could start at. The bridge you could already eliminate, since it was a smoking, cannon riddled husk. The main cargo hold would be where a spy would be gathering information, though maybe they would be hiding in a place like the engine room, or even considering escape through the lifeboat bay. >Engine room.>Main hold.>Lifeboat bay.>Other
>>3400248>>OtherWhere would they most likely be holding a spy they captured? We should be going thereAlso tell Mia to watch out for purple smoke while we're below deck, and if the hulls cause interference to signal us to come topside for an emergency by making three thuds or something.
>>3400248"Mia, I'm heading belowdecks to search for Unicorn! You keep up the pressure up there!" You yell. "Got it!" Mia replies as she dodges bullets and missiles that are being launched her way. You see a hatch that's been blown up by Mia's opening salvo and you drop down through it and directly into the main hold. At that moment, you feel something slam into you, sending you skidding behind a cargo container. You instinctively pull out your knife when you realize that the person who tackled you was a witch, her bear familiar ears poking from her blonde hair. "You're my extraction, I assume." The witch murmurs, and you note a hint of a Russian accent. "I take it you're Unicorn?" You grunt."Correct." Unicorn nods as she points to her belt, a smoke grenade with a purple band clipped to it."Any reason why you tackled me?" You groan as you get back up to your feet.""Unfortunately, the item these smugglers were carrying has gotten loose." Unicorn says grimly, ejecting a spent magazine from her pistol and slapping a fresh one in. "And it's quite the troublesome thing."You poke your head around the corner, and blanch when you see a large, boxy metal box with three long, spindly legs extending out from it, but folded up.A goddamn Martian tripod. You'd only seen them in museums and documentary reels, and even then, the things looked damn terrifying. And now-Unicorn quickly pulls you back as the tripod's maser lenses focus, firing a beam of invisible energy right where you head was at, the edge of the container glowing red from the heat. "Like I said, it's quite the problem." Unicorn grunts as another maser blast melts the hatch you entered through closed. "We'll have to find another way out.">Use the containers to conceal your movements so you can find an exit.>Fuck it, call in Mia and blast this thing.>Other
>>3400350>>Fuck it, call in Mia and blast this thing.Apply AT weaponry with extreme prejudice
>>3400350>>Fuck it, call in Mia and blast this thing.>>OtherChuck the smoke up where we came from to mark where Mia SHOULDN'T shoot.
>>3400350>>Fuck it, call in Mia and blast this thing.Gonna need some reinforcements on this one.
>>3400350>Fuck it, call in Mia and blast this thing.
>>3400350>>3400370Also, challenge Mia by saying it's time for her to impress you. That should get her going on all cylinders since she's shown she cares about that.
>>3400350"Mia! We got a Tripod in the hold!" You yell through the radio. "We need immediate close support!" "A Tripod?!" Practically yelps in pleasant surprise. "Don't worry! I'm on it!" Just mere second later, you hear a loud THUD coming from above. The Tripod even pauses to look up as well. You see a massive sword blade jutting through the ceiling, which then starts cutting through the steel deck like it was made of butter and makes a complete circle. The steel then falls out, exposing a massive hole in the top of the hold, Mia confidently floating above, staring down the Tripod. "This is gonna make an awesome kill marker!" She grins. "Quite the showgirl." Unicorn remarks. "Time for some chopped squid!" Mia roars as she readies her massive blade. >Better let Mia do her thing. >This is no time to play. She's got Hellfires!>Other
>>3400445>>Better let Mia do her thing.Wouldn't mind Calamari.
>>3400445>>This is no time to play. She's got Hellfires!>>OtherKindly ask Mia to not sink the ship until us two have GTFO'd.
>>3400445>Better let Mia do her thing.
>>3400445>This is no time to play. She's got Hellfires!
I was half expecting Unicorn to be someone from the Bishop family; glad it wasn't.
>>3400445>>Better let Mia do her thing.
>>3400445You just stand back and let Mia do her thing. She swoops in and cleaves one of the Tripod's legs clean off, sending the massive war machine tumbling over and smashing against a pile of containers. The Martian machine gives an electronic shriek as it retaliates with a combination of maser beams and close combat dendrites. Mia's shield sparkles and dazzles with a rainbow of colors as they reflect maser energy and dendrite strike alike. You swear you see Mia bite into a candy bar before she dives down, her sword thrusting straight into the Tripod's primary optic. The entire machine crackles and smokes with energy feedback before falling limp like a beached squid. "Huh, it was a lot easier than I thought." Mia frowns as she hovers over the Tripod carcass. "Despite being Martian technology, it's still an old War relic." Unicorn huffs as she steps out of cover. "Be glad it's not one of their modernized-"Unicorn pauses when she's interrupted by the distant hum of helicopter rotors. Multiple helicopters inbound. "Come on!" Mia stows her sword back into her striker and reaches both arms out. You and Unicorn each take hold of one and she lifts you both up and out onto the deck. And that's when you see a fleet of... Mi-8 transport helicopters and a M-24 Hind. The Mi-8s were disgorging... witches who were methodically wiping out the remaining gunboats with cold and ruthless precision. They didn't wear any sort of identifying patch, but they certainly weren't American or even CIA. The Mi-24 then touches down on one of the last remaining intact patches of deck, and a tall, imposing woman with a long scar running down one side of her face steps out. There was no debating that she was pure Russian through and through. "You were sloppy, Vorona." The woman grumbles, and you could see Unicorn visibly wilting under her glare. "And now I owe the CIA a favor, and you know how I despise owing any sort of debt to those vultures.""M-my apologies, Commander!' Unicorn, or Vorona, apparently, barks as she salutes. The woman then pauses and glances at you, her nose twitching. "You smell familiar, Boy." The woman narrows her eyes. "Where have we met before...">Wait a minute, she seems familiar too...>You have no idea who this is.>Other
>>3400528>>Other"Aren't you the soviet sword tank witch who aunty Red kinda had a crush on?"
>>3400528>Wait a minute, she seems familiar too...
>>3400528>>Wait a minute, she seems familiar too...
>>3400528>>>Wait a minute, she seems familiar too...
>>3400528>You have no idea who this is.
>>3400528>>Wait a minute, she seems familiar too...Oh fuck it's Balalaika
>>3400528"Wait a minute..." You squint. "Are you... Raikov?"Ivanna Raikov, an old "acquaintance" of Dad's. Once an enemy in World War 3 and basically Auntie Red's self proclaimed arch nemesis, she's since turned a new leaf and runs her own mercenary company, though you didn't really know much about the specifics of what she did."Wait, THE Raikov?" Mia gasps. "Ahhhh, now it's coming back to me." Raikov chuckles with a nostalgic smile. "You smell of that man, Pierce. You're his spawn, I assume.""His son, yes." You grunt. "So Uni- I mean- Vorona is one of yours?""Yes, we took a job for your CIA to investigate some mysterious shipping in Southeast Asia." Raikov turns her glare to Vorona again, causing the younger Russian to wilt even further. "Unfortunately, with this little setback, we'll have to wipe this entire flotilla off the map and start back at square one.""I sincerely apologize, Commander!" Vorona whimpers. Raikov glances and Vorona, then sighs and puts a hand on her head. "No worries, little one, mistakes are meant to be learned from. Something that you can reflect upon when you take are of latrine duty for the next two weeks.""Y-yes, Commander." Vorona winces.Boy, you didn't really want to imagine what it would be like working under Raikov...""Well, I suppose I should thank you for helping Vorona here." Raikov grumbles. "Tell Ramirez I'll clean this mess up, free of charge.""Roger that." Mia nods as she presses a finger to her radio earpiece. "Captain, Ramirez just issued a recall order.""Well, how are we- gah!" You yelp as Mia picks you up in her arms. "I'll get us back to the C-130. I can handle high altitude flight if it's only for a short period." Mia says as she bites down on a pixie stick. Down below, you see Raikov giving a casual wave as the two of you gain altitude. "Well, that was a pretty hectic first mission, huh?" Mia muses.>I think we did pretty well.>It felt like a complete clusterfuck.>Other
>>3400588>I think we did pretty well.
>>3400588>>I think we did pretty well."More interesting than Redeployment Afghanistan, at least."
>>3400588>>I think we did pretty well.
>>3400588"I think we did pretty well, considering." You nod. "This AHMS is really something.""We really have to come up with a better name for it." Mia sighs. "All those letters is just a mouthful.""I'm sure we can figure something out." You agree."Yeah! We can totally brainstorm together!" Mia says happily.However, despite the high spirits, as the C-130 comes into view, you can't help but feel that this was going to be the only time you and Mia would be called out on short notice. Well, one thing at a time, you suppose...>And that's it for the thread! We may see Andy and company return in the form of writeups, but it was nice coming back to the PJW setting for a bit! Hope all of you enjoyed it as well!
>>3400631It was nice.
>>3400631Thanks for running Merc!
>>3400631Thanks for bringing us back!
>>3400631Can't wait for the meetup of the Andy and Morgan with their own daughterus and challenge each other in a piggyback racing. Like fathers, like sons.