The Night Prommos Died
Timon Strabo looked at the time on the wall and picked up his phone calling the police chief. “Ok, you have the plan at the first sign of trouble start directing everyone to the bunkers, and the spaceport. Time will be of the essence we need to save as many as possible.” On the other end of the phone, there was silence for a moment then a voice spoke. “Relax Strabo it’s Armistice Day for Fraks sake, most people probably won’t even pay attention to your inauguration. They’ll probably be paying a lot more attention to all the money you spent on these preparations later.” Strabo replied with a little more urgency, “Just be ready.”
Strabo hung up and looked at the drawing on the wall across from his desk. Athena, a six-year-old girl had drawn this. It depicted his inauguration speech, and what seemed like many strange craft in the air overhead. No one had ever seen craft like this before, or so he had been told again and again. This drawing also pictured the day he was going to die, or so the mother of the child had said.
A second’s more glance before he picked up the phone again. On the other end, he heard the greetings of a heavily accented voice. “Luigi my friend” He spoke I hope everything is ready on your end. We must save as many as we can.” "As long as you are not asking to borrow any more money.” Came the reply. “Everything will be ready my friend.” Strabo had had almost a year to prepare for this moment, there was no way he was going to relax now.
At one time he was like most any other Citizen of the colony, he gave lip service to the Lords of Kobol, went and listened to the sermons of the Priests and Priestesses. Paid his Tithe, after all, the religious citizens voted to. But then that day came one year ago. The mother spoke of doomsday, showed Strabo drawings that she said came from her six-year-old daughter. Artwork that looked like it had been drawn by a colonial master. Strabo had smiled at her, closed the drawings and told her he was very busy at the moment. She continued to speak talking about how she had never been with a man ever when she was pregnant. One of the drawings had caught his eye. However, he looked again, and he wasn’t so sure anymore. That’s when he asked the mother to let him see the girl. And he asked for the Augurer.
Strabo would never forget the words Quinto Torran the augurer said to him that day. She is no Oracle he said, I don’t know what she is, but it’s something far different. The Augurer looked shaken after talking with the girl.
“Sir, it’s time.” Timon Strabo looked up and saw his assistant Hailey Vance, smiling in the doorway. He wondered what she was smiling about on this day, was he becoming paranoid because of some girls’ drawings, so far they had been pretty accurate. Walking with Hailey down the hallway he remembered when he first met her. Luigi had given him a call about a girl one of the casinos had claimed to have caught counting cards. She was a lovely dark skinned woman, and whether she was counting cards or not. She had a head for numbers. Strabo was so impressed he hired her.
The walk to the front of the building where the podium was set up seemed longer than most days. Strabo received calls of go get em mayor, congrats again mayor along the way. Little did they know what was about to happen. Then again little did he know what was about to happen.
Timon Strabo strode up to the podium, there was a small crowd in attendance, most he recognized as campaign staff, dedicated followers and a couple news reporters. Just as he was about to speak to the small crowd a loud noise came from his right, where he turned and looked off into the distance of the Amphitheater, the clock had started for Armistice day celebrations. This was the same amphitheater where 100’s of thousands of people witnessed the incredible concert put on my Nebula Muse. The performance of Invincible plays in his mind.
Strabo is jolted back to the present with some sounds of cheers and clapping. “My fellow Canceron’s, residents of this great city of Prommos” Strabo begins. “We endured a long and sometimes brutal campaign. But we Survived…” Strabo’s speech is interrupted by a loud noise as apparently, some of the noisiest partygoers are blasting music over loud speakers. After the sound dies down, Strabo continues. “As I was saying we Survived against all the odds…” Again, Strabo is interrupted but this time blaring out over speakers is the early warning system installed in the last year. Air Raid sirens scream out their warnings. The sky itself begins to darken. It has begun, just as the girl predicted. In the sky Strabo sees strange almost crescent shaped fighters defending in mass, there must be 100, no 200, maybe more of them blotting out the sun. Why are the planetary defenses not firing? Where is the colonial fleet?
As a group of the enemy fighters break off and start what appears to be a strafing run right at the government building, Strabo takes out his communicator. “Enact all security protocols, erect the blockades prepare for an assault.” One of the strange fighter’s swoops in as a hail of auto cannon fire erupts all around the gathered. The rounds rip thru civilians, who begin scattering and running in panic. Over the loudspeakers we here. “All citizens, this is Mayor Strabo, please make your way to the nearest shelter.” Strabo looks up and notices several squadrons worth of these fighters turn and start diving towards the amphitheater.
As If that was not enough, several larger craft descends towards the city. One landing near the podium. Security forces brace themselves as the Hatch opens and Cylon Centurions come pouring out. But no Cylons like Strabo had ever seen. One of them comes out uses one of its arms as a melee weapon and eviscerates a startled guard. Others stand for a moment as their arms change, and suddenly multi-barreled machine guns are in place of their hands.
Strabo manages to mutter “Hephaestus protect us” as he is grabbed by a city security guard. “Sir we must retreat.” “Fallback to position two Strabo screams in his comm unit. These things are armored.” Strabo turns to the security team. “We must give citizens the time to get out of here, get to the second barricade and hold it. He turns, runs with the men towards the barricades, bullets slamming into the pavement around them Two of the security team go down before reaching their objective.
“This is bad.” One of the men says. “Worse than I ever expected.” Strabo ducts just as a hail of bullets slam into the barricade. “It can’t get worse than this.” He hears off to his right. Right on cue, A loud thump comes from off in the distance, as Strabo looks in the direction of the capital city of Hades, he sees what he will remember for the rest of his life, the unmistakable shape of a Mushroom cloud forming in the distance. “They’ve nuked the capital.” Screams it. Bryce. “It’s worse,” Strabo said. “We must evacuate to the spaceport.” “Sir.” Stammers Bryce. “We need better armament or we are not going to make the spaceport.” Strabo grabs his comm unit. “Luigi, where are those weapons you promised me?” “On the way” Luigi’s reply comes, Strabo can barely hear it over the staccato of machine gun fire from the Cylons.
Strabo and the ever-dwindling security team fight a slow withdrawal down the strip of Casino’s, shops, and adult clubs that make up the main thoroughfare of Prommos. The Cylons are relentless in their pursuit, killing anything that moves, the Cylons do not differentiate between the force fighting them, civilians just trying to flee, or even children. Nearing the Hermes Casino and Grande Hotel, Strabo sees a group of 8 marines making their way towards their current hastily constructed barricade. He waves them in, thinking finally some reinforcements, until he notices they are all unarmed.
“Corporal Hitchcomb reporting for duty sir.” Hitchcomb stoops and picks up a rifle from a fallen security officer as he speaks. “Come join the fun corporal.” Strabo replies as he takes a measured shot on one of the toasters. The shot slams into the Cylon’s head, at first it appears to do no damage, the head slowly turns and then the toaster explodes.
A truck comes screaming around the corner of an alleyway right in front of the barricade. The Cylons turn their attention towards the truck riddling it with bullets. On the side of the truck can be made out the sign Luigi’s Catering, we deliver the best food in town. The driver’s door opens and out jumps Luigi. “Who ordered delivery,” he screams as he ducks some incoming fire. Opening the back doors, shows crates suspiciously stamped Property of the Colonial Navy. Dragging one of the crates out it breaks when hitting the pavement, out scatter a few brand-new top of the line military issue combat rifles. Another crate is full of ammo.
“Grab some weapons boys,” Luigi shouts. “Our ride will be here in a few minutes.” Strabo shakes his head “You are late.” “I got stuck in traffic” comes Luigi’s reply. Strabo, Luigi and the marines now armed with military grade hardware lay into the advancing Cylons. They gain further help when the screaming sounds of vipers come in and strafe the area. Strabo looks up to see a squadron of Viper I’s those museum pieces won’t last long in the air with the Cylon raiders, but their strafing run helps even the numbers up for the moment. Luigi smiles “It’s amazing what you can find in this town, ain’t it.” “Frak I didn’t even think those things could fly anymore, I thought they were just props in the Ares Casino.” Comes Strabo’s reply. Luigi nods, “Where do you think I have been spending your money?”
Another round of auto fire and the streets are clear of Cylons off the street for the moment. Luigi says time to get to the spaceport before it is too late. Here comes our ride. At first glance what appears to be a standard freight truck comes rolling around the corner. But a closer look reveals its trailer has been armored and there are obvious gun ports on the side of it. A couple machine guns mounted on top for good measure. Strabo orders the men forward and waves for the civilians to come out of hiding. Leading those is his assistant. After getting the Marines, the remaining security force, and the civilians on board, Strabo enters the truck, it’s heavily armored rear doors close and the truck screams out towards the space port. “This thing can protect pretty well from any small arms fire; we should be find unless the raiders come after us.” Explains Luigi.
The trip to the spaceport takes about twenty minutes, a few Cylon ambushes are easily repelled by the heavily armed colonials, though there is a scare when one of the Cylons manages to get a shot off with a man portable rocket launcher. It’s impact into the upper section of the trailer takes out one of the machine gunners as well as blasting a hole in the trailer itself. Luckily no one inside receives more than superficial wounds.
Arriving at the spaceport, the team embarks to find pandemonium everywhere. People trying to board the transports in panic, some being trampled. The remaining security team fighting alongside Luigi’s men, trying to not only maintain order, but take care of any Cylons. Some ships lay smoking ruins, obviously the Cylons have hit the spaceport hard.
“Get the women and children to the transports first, Strabo says. “Sir,” Starts His assistant Hailey, “You need to board a transport now.” “No,” states Strabo, “women and children first, followed by anyone that can help with survival, I am just a politician I’ll be staying here with my city.” Strabo takes up a stance with his battle rifle, and begins firing off short controlled bursts at the advancing toasters. “Looks like that police training came in handy” He thinks. After a few more assaults by the Cylons and eerie silence comes over the spaceport. “Only one ship left” Corporal Hitchcomb says, “Time to evacuate sir.” “You and your men get on that ship, marines will be needed.” Replies Strabo. “I’ll stay and guard your retreat” Strabo feels a slight sting in his neck, as darkness starts to envelope him, he hears from behind him. “You are not going to die on this day Timon Strabo, God has a plan for you.” Everything goes black.
Timon Strabo begins to awaken, bright lights in his eyes. “What? Where? Am I” He weakly stammers. “You are onboard what amounts to our medical ship” he hears, but his eyes are still to blurred to make out the form. “Where is the ship?” he asks. “Somewhere out in space, though as I understand it we are low on fuel and without military escort still” “Who are you? asks Strabo. “I am doctor Winslow; I was vacationing in Prommos when the Cylons attacked. Someone told me some guy put all this together. Though I don’t know who he is and I think he is dead.” “Now who are you?” “No one, no one of any importance” Strabo replies. “Well no one welcome to what is left of humanity.” States Dr. Winslow.