The First Mission

“TEAM A42 REPORT TO MISSION BRIEFING ROOM.  REPEAT: TEAM A42 REPORT TO MISSION BRIEFING.” 1B-42 bellowed at 4am on a Saturday morning.  “Please follow the red lights to the Mission Briefing Room!”

“You’re joking right?”  Daniel groaned as he followed Alexis and Tytus to the Mission Briefing Room.

“This had better be good.” 24-42 muttered to Henna as they followed M42 and the glaring red lights.

The group assembled in front of a desk where C42 was sitting.  In her hands was a thick file, which she handed to M42.

“City A in our allied country 65 in the southern War Wastes is under severe threat.  Enemy 12 has managed to get their hands on a potentially devastating missile that could level the city instantly.  Unfortunately none of our weapons systems are strong enough to shoot down this new missile.  It will be up to you to intercept and destroy the missile before it reaches its intended target.  Failure would lead to a war that the world can ill-afford to have.”  C42 explained.  “M42 has the file, he can give you more detailed information.  Right now, you guys need to get to City A as soon as you can.”

“Yes marm!” The group replied.

“Follow the red lights to your transport.  Good luck A42.” C42 saluted them as they rushed out of the room.

“We don’t even get to pack?” Tytus looked indignant.

“Everything you need will be supplied.” Suzie said.

“What about those of us who want to say good bye to our pets?!” 24-42 asked.

“You’ll be back in a week or two.”  M42 replied.

“You’re certain we won’t be killed then?”  Alexis asked.

“You guys seem to be strong enough to handle it.” M42 brushed her off as they loaded up into the cargo plane.

“I gotta admit, it’s kinda exciting that we’re finally off to do what we were recruited to do.”  Henna sat down on one of the klunky bucket seats and did up her seatbelt.

“Exciting?  We’re potentially going off to our deaths!” 24-42 protested.

“Potentially.  You could very well survive the whole thing.” M42 pointed out.

“You fill me with confidence.” 24-42 deadpanned.

“You’re welcome.”

The cargo plane shuddered as the motors started.  Soon, it was up in the air.

“Why couldn’t that lot fly themselves over?” Tytus scowled.  He hated aircraft with a passion.

“We don’t know how much stamina they have.  We want you guys to arrive in tip-top shape, we don’t know how much longer we have until those missiles go off.” Suzie smiled.

“Swell.” Alexis sighed and looked out of the window.

“Do we get an in-flight movie?” 24-42 piped up.

“What do you think this is?!” M42 cried.

“I have a tablet with movies on it!”  Suzie pulled out her bag.  “I learnt on my last assignment to have a bag packed in case the Mission Alarm went off.  Every time it goes off, I grab the bag on the way out.”

“Smart.” M42 said approvingly.

“Could have shared this bit of info with us BEFORE tonight.” Daniel scowled.  “We weren’t informed that we wouldn’t have time to prepare when we got called to move out.”

“Quit whining.  You have a job to do.” M42 scowled.

“Well now you DO know, right?” Suzie smiled sympathetically.

“Doesn’t help us right now.” Tytus snapped.

The rest of the 15 hour plane trip wasn’t pleasant at all.

“So I’m thinking we’ll try a land-based attack first, using our blasts to try and knock the missile into the countryside.” Daniel said as the truck jolted along the poorly-constructed road.

“And then if that doesn’t work, those of us who can fly will try to stop it that way?” Henna asked.

“Yeah, although I have no idea how to disarm a missile while it’s flying.”  Daniel sighed.

“Cut the propulsion system off?” 24-42 suggested.

“And have it blow up in your face?” Alexis pointed out.

“We tested your resistance to explosives, you should be okay.” Suzie said.  “It might hurt a bit though.”

“That’s not what we wanted to hear.” Daniel frowned.

“So where are we staying?” Alexis asked.

“This truck.” M42 replied. “It opens out into a very large camping setup.”

To be fair, the Experiments could have taken it a lot worse than they did.

“We have been here TWO WEEKS and no missile yet!” Tytus roared.

“Negotiations must be going well.” M42 shrugged.

“You’re a prick.” Alexis scowled at him.

“I’ve been called worse.”

“This countryside stinks!  We aren’t even allowed out of this forest!” Henna whined.

“How much longer do we have to wait?  I haven’t had a shower since before we left!” 24-42 groaned. Showering with a bucket was not good for anyone’s temper, plus the lack of variety in food was getting on everyone’s last nerve. The big thing was the lack of privacy, which had ended in some very awkward situations. 

“Should be another week.” M42 replied.

It’s a miracle he survived that announcement.

“MISSILE ALERT!” One of the soldiers came screaming from the satellite truck.

“Say what now?!” Henna perked up.

“Experiments, over here!”  M42 yelled.  The group quickly assembled in front of the Major.

“Remember what you guys planned.  The missile should be here in five minutes.” Suzie pointed to a chalkboard with various notes scrawled on it.

“I vote for trying to meet it as soon as possible.” Alexis said.

“I agree.” Daniel nodded.  

“I think us fliers should hang back in case the ground assault fails, we still aren’t too fast in the skies and if we have to try and catch up with it we’ll just increase the chance of failure.”  24-42 pointed out.

“I’m with 24-42.” Henna agreed.

“Let’s get going!” M42 commanded.

Tytus and Alexis jumped into the nearest vehicle and drove off to intercept the missile.  Daniel, Henna and 24-42 scaled the nearest trees and kept an eye out.

It was eerily quiet up in those trees.  The three Experiments were all on edge.  If Tytus and Alexis failed…

“NO!” Daniel groaned.  The smoking missile was still heading straight for the city!

“It looks like they might have damaged it, come on!”  24-42 flew as fast as she could towards the speeding missile.

“What now?!” Henna cried as they all latched on.

Daniel noticed the propulsion system.  “Break it!”  He cried.

The three started trying to blast the thing into pieces, but their blasts only dented it.

“The armour on it is too strong!” Henna cried.

“Then rip the stuff off!” 24-42 yelled.  The city was now on the horizon.

“It won’t budge!”

“Try and force it off-course!” Daniel suggested.

The three jumped off and tried to blast it away into another direction.  They only managed to succeed in delaying it a little.

24-42 growled and flew after it.  She managed to catch up and started trying to pull it apart again.

This time, she managed to get one of the covers off.  Without thinking, she grabbed at the wires and yanked them out.

The missile lurched downwards.

“Yes!” She cried, jumping off.

Then the missile exploded, sending 24-42 flying.  Her fall was broken by a nearby tree and every single one of its branches.

“I really don’t want to do that again.”  She groaned, rubbing her sore backside.  She got unsteadily to her feet and looked up just in time to see burning rubble from the missile heading straight towards her.

She squeaked in terror and covered her face with her hands.  


She felt herself being flung to the ground, then she heard the Major screaming in pain.

Two soldiers managed to get there with extinguishers before too much damage was done, but M42 was still in a lot of pain that night as they flew back to Ostraya.

“Gosh it’s nice to be heading home!  I smell AWFUL!” Henna sighed as they crossed the Big Water.

“You don’t need to tell us, we can smell your pee powers!” Tytus laughed, earning him a slap from Alexis.

“You guys did great, especially for your first time.  You’ll get stronger and smarter with experience and soon these things will be routine.”  Suzie pumped them up.

24-42 was sitting next to the cot where the Major was lying down, covered in bandages.  Part of his face had gotten burnt, and you could see that one of his eyes was cybernetic.

“How are you feeling?” She asked as he woke up from his nap.

“Tired.  Sore.  Nothing new.”  He mumbled.  “How about you?”

“Fine, thanks to you.  Just a lot of bruises from where the tree caught me.” She chuckled.  “I can’t thank you enough, if that stuff had hit me dead-on…”

“You probably would have survived, but you would have been out of action for a while, and it’s my job to make sure you guys are able to do yours.” M42 looked at the ceiling.

“Of course it is.”  24-42 smiled, knowing that he’d never admit to doing anything out of the goodness of his heart.