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Hi, I'm horror and science fiction author Steve Kozeniewski (pronounced: "causin' ooze key.") Welcome to my blog! You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Amazon. You can e-mail me here, join my mailing list here, or request an e-autograph here. Free on this site you can listen to me recite one of my own short works, "The Thing Under the Bed."

Friday, August 7, 2009

The Last War: Chapter 45

Captain Marianne Totschläger pulled the goggles down from her safety helmet securely over her eyes. She motioned with her hand. In turn, each member of her motorcycle squad nodded to her.

"Jetzt!" she yelled, and all the bikers took off.

Gruber and a corporal were holding the huge ramp between them. It had handles on either side and had wheels on the bottom so it could be moved. They had already measured it perfectly so that it lined up with the walls of Washington. Gruber and the other pressed their feet to their respective pedals, and rammed the ramp up against the wall, turning out at the last instant.

Totschläger was the first to hit the ramp. She went flying up the thing at full throttle, literally flew through the air for a few seconds, then landed with a bad knock. She was surrounded by hundreds of Claw men. The captain immediately pulled the trigger of the machine gun mounted on her handlebars, and sprayed hot lead into the crowd of American rebels. She made sure to keep moving constantly and fast, at all costs.

The next thing she saw was Metzger, half dressed, ordering volley after volley of AS gun fire shot directly at the next motorcyclist coming over the wall. Apparently he had been fooled by their night offensive, and had been sleeping. The guards seemed minimal.

Suddenly, the biker exploded into flames. He went tumbling head over heels (or rather, wheel over wheel) and smashed apart when he hit the ground. The volleys of fire had finally hit his gas tank.

Marianne paused for a moment briefly muttering a German curse. Ducking her head to avoid fire, but still feeling the shells bang off her safety helmet, she headed for the gates of the city.

Sergeant Michael Gruber came flying off the ramp next, yelling and screaming for all his worth. He, too, landed in a crowd of The Claw men. He had a mounted S-75 shell machine gun the same way his captain did, but he preferred the more personal approach to bike warfare. He rushed through the crowd of troops, mowing them down with the spikes he had specially fitted onto his tires before they could return fire.

Totschläger eased up alongside Gruber, and continued firing. He started firing, knowing his captain would not appreciate his more aesthetically pleasing means of killing. Motorradkorps troops continued raining from the sky around them, some being blown away still in the air, some being picked off by Claw troops at close range, and others surviving to wreak havoc.

"Gruber, I'm going to make a break for the gates. Cover me!" she yelled.

"Understood," he acknowledged.

Biking would be almost impossible in shell-preventative armor. It would simply be too bulky. Motorradkorps members had to wear leather uniforms that offered the most minor of protection, but were excellent for wind resistance. Only their safety helmets were armor. This left them highly vulnerable. Two bikes had a much greater chance of mission success than a single bike.

Gruber and Totschläger carved a bloody path to the main gates of Washington. It was locked by crude means, a huge metal plank like in some ancient fortress. The captain leapt off her bike for nearly ten seconds to upset the metal plank and force one door slightly open. Gruber feverishly defended her from the quickly massing Claw troops. She leapt back on her bike and they took off out of the gate.

The rest of the motorcycle squad followed the two, each member opening the gate slightly more as they passed through. German infantry poured quickly into the city through the gates.

Taking off her goggles and wiping away the sweat from her face, Marianne barely took notice of the completed mission. She got down from her bike for a moment to take a breath.

"It's a damn shame the Americans aren't here," she said to Gruber.

"I'm disappointed myself," agreed the sergeant, "They always made The Claw pay for every inch they defended."

"Oh, well, our troops will do well enough," she said, then reboarded her bike, "Move out!"

The motorcycle squad slowly moved forward back to the German camp. Tonight would not be the night for victory. It was merely a time to whittle down The Claw defenses. The German infantry would be pushed out in a few hours, but they would've killed many Claw troops. After enough attrition, the Germans would be prepared for a massive assault. Then Washington would fall.

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