Bunker Battle Manual Tip #1: Enemies often have weak points--chinks in the armour, certain ways they move, weaknesses in stance, emotional outbursts on certain acts... Look for them. It can often mean the difference between a Pyrrhic victory and a heroic one.
Domestic Terrorism (GM)
The sun shined brightly in the sky for the first time in days, revealing a series of snow-coated apartment complexes. This was an especially thick section of the third layer, crammed full of people and only a few military police armed with simple sidearms and blue-black uniforms. Against trained soldiers they would not stand much of a chance aside from being able to evacuate civilians. The whole area had been briefed that there would be a military drill involving three soldiers and two pilots. The pilots being the children of military lineage and the lack of mutants among the soldiery solidified in the public's mind the idea that this was simply a patriotic drill.
Still, it didn't stop some from staring in awe at the sight. The military police saluted at their passing, there was the occasional cheer of joy from those naive enough to believe propaganda, or under-the-breath sneer of disgust from those too drunk from pessimism to see the necessity of it all. Diana especially was given attention, she was a foreigner, yet she seemed especially interesting for that very quality alone. A child points at her and remarks in Romanian that Diana is pretty before his mother pulls him away. Anton also gets a few looks, especially from the military police, who salute him without hesitation, proud that one of their own was in the demonstration of the state's power. Carolyn and LaLa get a few people surprised at the sight of two people--once teenagers who pulled pranks and fixed small gadgetry for the neighborhood--now serving in a military show of force. Finley, on the other hand, is more looked upon with caution from parents who steer their children clear of his gun, though the children are happily fascinated with him.
They reach the general area designated to be bombed. There was a few large apartment buildings here. According to Intel operatives, U-ARM soldiers would be targeting a building known as the Life Home first. It was a six story tall building, with the top three floors housing orphaned infants and toddlers. The building was technically government-run, giving U-ARM a perfect excuse as to why they would destroy a target full of young children and volunteer nurses. U-ARM had two likely entry points, a sewer entrance which was converted into a general ladder between the upper and lower parts of the third layer which was located inside of the building, and a top floor walkway between the Life Home and an adjacent, eight story tall apartment building designated by Intel as the Gateway Building. The walkway itself was made out of reinforced steel, so destroying it would be a hard, though not impossible, task.
The apartments in the area looked thin enough to shoot through with high calibre weaponry, giving mechs a potential supporting role in any assault for covering fire.
As for the general layout of the Life Home, it had an open, unfinished basement in which people entered and left through a single staircase to the first floor. The first floor had six rooms and a hallway connecting them all: Two general storage rooms with locked doors though easy to break, a medical room full of supplies for the children, and three rooms for staff to sleep in. This combination of rooms was mimicked on the second and third floors, with the fourth, fifth, and sixth floors being dedicated towards children's rooms, nurseries, and emergency sickness containment rooms.
What plan the pseudo-military force had now, at this point, was up to them, though the area looked packed full of civilians with only a few military police keeping them in check. Immediately opening fire on any suspicious persons would cause all hell to break loose.
Domestic Terrorism (Carolyn Antoinette)
Carolyn narrows her eyes within her cockpit at the various readings her scanners were picking up from the local area. So many people. Already she was worrying for LaLa's safety; that U-ARM would strike an area chalked so full of innocents told her much about the pure evil within their hearts. So with a sigh she taps her radio and speaks to her four squad mates. "I can't get a clean shot through this mess, nor can I enter the Life Building. I'll stay back here and fire through the walls at designated targets... I suggest we split up and have two cover the top entrance, two cover the basement. Just to make sure they don't slip through." She states simply, before tapping the radio again and going to communicate with Anton alone. "I'm assuming you have the same thoughts in mind, so, I will ask... Will you cover the top of the apartment? You have jump jets, you could get there quickly."
She then listens for a response through her radio, taking a few deep breaths and calming herself. Everything would be alright. They would kill the bad guys, laugh it off, and share a few drinks at the bar being heralded as heroes. Carolyn bites her lip and chews nervously, her deep breathes continuing. She did not like waiting for trouble to come to her... Especially where so much could go wrong.
The Mystery Mutant
As the small group of primarily mutants make their way on foot to the designated area, they would see plenty marks of battles in the past. Bullet hole ridden vehicles, empty shells, dust and more, yet, there was strangely one thing missing from this traditional killing ground of raiders, bandits, and wanderers... The actual corpses, or even the carrion birds. Not a single corpse could be found, nor a single bird, on their entire journey as they grew closer to the Shadow Zone, and further from Bunker Chicago. The general weather was chilly despite the rising sun for the first time in days, a light coating of snow rested atop everything. At this point they had been following tracks with the aid of a young lieutenant named Ridley. He technically outranked them, but due to their status of obeying Colonel Black's orders, they could ignore him without consequence.
Still. He got them to their destination. He stuttered a little as he spoke, likely from the cold, but potentially from fear as well. "H-H-Here you g-go! F-found the place. These t-tracks are f-fresh." They were standing in the middle of a backyard of a three story house. Inside was your typical configuration at first glance: Kitchen, living room, staircase to the second floor, three bedrooms on the second floor, two bathrooms one on each floor, an attic as well at the top of the third floor... Strangely enough, the third floor looked to have an observatory recently built into it, with a miniaturized telescope looking out into the stars bursting through the rooftop. The back door was still open, the glass from the windows had long since been shattered, likely from when the first nukes hit several decades ago.
The house next door also looked to be a potential candidate, with a set of footprints leading there as well, though it was only a two story tall building, one could not be certain as to its configuration until they got closer to it due to the partially still standing wooden fence separating the two houses.
Ridley looks between the various members of the group, his teeth chattering as he held onto his rifle tightly. "W-What do you t-think we should do now?" He whispers, before adding a little more. "This mutant is capable of moving fast, if we split up we have a better chance of finding her, but if we do, we definitely limit our firepower against what is most probably a very deadly enemy..." It was all the advice he seemed to have for them.
The helicopter carrying Colonel Black and the rest took off from Bunker Chicago and quickly flew out of the city, giving them all a small glimpse at the northern part of the city engulfed in a black fog. Whilst the co-pilot stared in awe, Colonel Black merely stared towards the rising sun, the direction they were travelling, with a grim expression on her face. Wearing a set of heavily modified medium armour, there were various additions to the suit. It was painted black with a white skull across her chest, and being the survivalist that she was, a black helmet to match with a face shield. How she could see through it was likely confidential information, considering it was not transparent. On her back was a small pack, likely a jet pack with only a small amount of fuel, not to be used for long periods of time. Her rifle with Tesla coils, the Hand of God, was firmly in her grasp as the helicopter began to circle around the area to give them a good look at it from a high altitude.
Beneath them was two barns and a farmstead, which was a one story bungalow. Beneath that was likely a small underground complex, rendering the option of simply blowing it away obsolete. The pilot began to veer away as they were spotted, a single tank shell striking the rear end of the chopper and being deflected harmlessly away, exploding as it hit the ground, much to the dismay of the raiders on the ground, who screamed obscenities at the tops of their lungs.
A few hundred feet away the mechs were dropped first as they hung, compacted, from underneath the helicopter, followed up with the helicopter landing a few feet away from the mechs. They were in a large grain field--grain which was managing to survive the light layer of snow for the moment, surprisingly enough. It was tall enough to conceal the average person. Colonel Black grabs one additional piece of equipment--a large, black, metal shield, compacted and deployable--and steps out. She taps her helmet and the squad's radios crackle to life. "We've landed a far distance away to give us a safe landing zone, as Tyra won't allow her men to chase after us." Another tank shell flies overhead, missing its target zone completely and hitting the grain field some few feet away instead. They were using it like artillery.
"The mechs can survive the tank shells, though heavier mechs will take the hits better than the lighter ones. They should lead the charge. When we enter the underground complex, those with close range weapons and close quarters combat training should then take the lead." In the distance there was some incomprehensible whooping and laughter, likely they thought they hit someone with their misaligned tank shots. The mech pilots could see the tank beside the east barn, with the west barn holding three or four raiders. Two raiders in particular stood in front of the homestead, screaming bloody obscenities while flailing with their swords wildly. Tyra was nowhere in sight. All of the raiders, and the tank, were far in distance, making closing the gap a more difficult affair. The men without mechs would find that they couldn't see the enemy, but that the enemy couldn't particularly see them through the grain either. The grain would both obscure their vision and make it impossible to see the enemy up until a moderate distance away, when the cover would clear sufficiently.
Colonel Black slings her rifle over her back, then deploys her shield. It was still light enough for her to hold with both hands, and large enough to cover her whole person in one direction. "I will mark their positions for the rest of you so you can move in and execute them with maximum efficiency. Nobody play hero, don't be stupid, and we'll get through this in one piece." She taps her pack, and the jets light up, immediately sending her several feet into the air as she holds the shield in front of herself. She couldn't fire in this position, but then, she likely knew what she was doing.
Thus, it was merely up to those on the ground, in the grain field, as to whether they would charge blindly, or use a tactical maneuver of some sort. To engage at a distance, or close the gap as fast as possible... Which would they do?
The Lifeline Convoy
Two more helicopters had departed at the same time as Colonel Black's helicopter, though this one seemed to be less technologically advanced, it moved slower, and its armour seemed more familiar as the kind of steel one would hope could at least resist bullets. It flew for what felt to be a short period of time before landing just outside of Chicago's south end of the city, where the Homestead convoy waited at a military outpost. One helicopter carried the mechs in a compartmentalized state, easy to bring out of hibernation and could be made combat-ready in just a minute. The other helicopter carried the reinforcements. As they had flown over they would see five large APC's, thickly armoured to the same degree as Black's helicopter. There were two military-style jeeps with high calibre turrets mounted on them, at the front and rear ends of the convoy. There was also two dozen soldiers surrounding the convoy, and one additional small mech. It, bizarre as it seemed, appeared to be carrying a sword wielded by a power fist, and a somewhat modified .50 calibre gun.
The mech turns to face the newcomers, with a speakerphone addressing them. "Ah, the reinforcements. My name is Captain Jason, head of the homesteader defenses. Assigned to protect the lifeline convoy." He motions with his sword over the several soldiers and two jeeps. "We were attacked earlier and lost some of our men and firepower. We had three tanks but they were left behind, as were casualties. Tyra's men assaulted us, then retreated when they found out just how devastating a homesteader could be." He stated, with a measure of pride in his voice. He had likely managed to destroy something of value to the raiders, or perhaps he was simply full of hot air. Either way... "I'll need you take positions around the convoy. We will be leaving in ten minutes, whether you are ready or not." With that stated, he moves to start inspecting the men surrounding the convoy's vehicles. He didn't seem to be a fan of Bunker Chicago's security forces, almost taking them for granted in the manner he had addressed them.
It was, at this moment, that the squad would receive a radio communication on a private channel. It was the voice of a woman. "Ah, my apologies, my husband can be rather rough towards new people. I'm Isabella, driver of the second APC. If you need anything just let me know. I can usually get through to him when everything goes to hell." She ends the communication, but leaves on their radios the private comm channel open for them to use whenever they wished.
Now, how would they position themselves in the convoy, one could wonder...