The God Wars

Chapter Eight:

Beachheads and Bullheads

By Dwayne MacInnes

PFC Daniels did not know what to think. The night before the officers told the soldiers that through some malfunction of a secret weapon, and the entire fleet might have ended up on another world. Most of the troopers figured it was just some sort of joke or initiation on the green troops.

The sun was dipping towards the ocean to the west when the Olympus docked next to a long stone pier. The Pima, still steaming back and forth in the harbor, kept broadcasting the same message in a strange tongue repeatedly. The fact that the speaker was a woman only added more mystery to the strange events.

The officers wasted no time assembling the soldiers and preparing them for combat. Daniels had his rucksack and M1 Garand in hand when Sergeant Jim "Jolly" Rogers barked out the command for his squad to disembark.

The sergeant led his men down the gangplank and over the pier towards a burning, rubble-laden city. The soldiers took quick glances around them as they ran up the stone pier. Daniels had never been to Greece, but from what he remembered in his old school textbooks, the buildings looked Grecian in construction.

Occasionally, the men would spot a human watching them curiously from behind some ruined building. The few people the soldiers saw looked like ancient Greek soldiers as well. They wore polished bronze armor and carried a thick ox-hide shield with various images on them, a short bronze sword, a long heavy hafted spear, and the telltale bronze helmet with a horsehair plume.

"Okay you dogfaces!" roared Sergeant Rogers as the men assembled on the main road on the edge of the city. "If you didn't believe the fairy tale you were told last night you can see for yourself that it is real."

Several soldiers looked around at the burning city and the endless stream of G.I.s issuing from the Olympus. The carcass of a minotaur lay not far from the soldiers. It was half buried in the debris from a collapsed building.

"Sarge, this can't be real," moaned one soldier.

"You better believe it is real or you may get a rude awakening," the sergeant stated pointing to the half-bovine corpse with the barrel of his Thompson submachine gun. "You ain't going to get any steaks from that. In fact, it'll probably have you for dinner if you aren't careful.

"Now, we are going to rid what's left of this town of creatures like these as well as those one-eyed beasts you guys read about in the Odyssey. We will push through this city and anything that is bigger than a man is a target. You will not harm any civvies, you will not harm any half-naked man in golden armor, and you will assist anyone of the above. Do I make myself clear?"

"Yessir!!" the soldiers replied in unison.

"All right let's head out," Rogers said as he led his men through the debris choked roads of the town.

M1 Garand

PFC Daniels held his M1 Garand at ready. He searched the surrounding area anxiously looking for some giant to assail him and his squad. They laboriously worked their way through the debris.

The fires were scattered and there were occasional house still standing. Daniels noted that there was not a house over three storeys tall. There were also many bodies; too many of them were human. He tried not to look at their faces. He was already feeling ill.

Suddenly Sergeant Rogers opened up with his Tommy gun. A giant with one-eye stood towering over the sergeant with a huge wooden club raised. The .45 bullets from the submachine gun ripped a series of bloody holes across the cyclops's naked chest.

Thomson Submachine Gun

The giant gave out a howl of pain before falling backwards into the debris of a burning building. His body writhed in the fire as it consumed the beast's flesh.

A bellow brought Daniels back to his own concerns. A minotaur raised itself out of a pile of broken stones and charged the private while swinging its giant double-headed axe. PFC Daniels took a few steps backwards and opened up with the semi-automatic Garand. Two .30 bullets hit the monster in the upper torso. The shaggy-headed beast shook off the effects and roared in a bull-like cry. The minotaur charged again and Daniels emptied the M1 into the beast's chest and head. He even shot off one of its huge horns.

The minotaur's eyes fell back into their sockets and its tongue lay limp out of its bloody mouth. However the dead carcass of the beast continued to charge towards the private in a lumbering stagger. It finally fell to the ground but its momentum caused the body to tumble onto the soldier. Daniels felt the heavy weight of the brute pin him to the ground.

Under the body of the foul smelling half-bull creature Daniels could hear the combat around him as his squad fought off an ambush. Haskill's BAR fired off small bursts, as did Roger's Tommy gun. The rest of the squad continued to fire their M1s. There was the sound of a couple of explosions resulting in the use of the hand grenades.

Daniels could not see anything and try as he might he could not move the carcass off his body. He had to take shallow breaths for his chest was compressed under the minotaur's weight. The battle raged around him and all he could hear were the screams and roars of men and beast fighting in desperate combat.

"Haskill bring that BAR to bear over there." Sergeant Roger's voice cried over the din of combat. "Jenkins, call up the Pima and see if we can get some support before we lose all the remaining day light.

"Everyone fall back!" Daniels did not like the sound of the sergeant calling the men to pull back. The private tried to call out for help, but he could not manage anything over a hoarse whisper.

Grunts and growls of the beasts radiated around where Daniels was pinned under the body. He no longer heard the voice of his squad mates. Although, he could still hear the sound of automatic and semi-automatic fire in the distance.

Within a few minutes of the squad pulling back, Daniels could hear the whistling of the incoming artillery from all nine of the Pima's 8 inch guns. Daniels said a silent prayer and braced for the inevitable explosions that were about to commence. Though he could not see them, Daniels could imagine the inhuman creatures gathered around looking to the sky at the whistling death about to land on them.

The ground shook in a violent quake as the 8 inch shells exploded around Daniels. The cries of wounded and dying monsters mingled with the crashing shells. By the amount of shells falling around the area, Daniels figured that the heavy cruiser had sent a second volley. Miraculously after a half minute of intense bombardment the explosions finally stopped. More miraculously, Daniels found that not only did he survive unscathed but also the body of the minotaur had been shaken off him.

Daniels picked himself up from the ground. Around him lay the remains of giant monsters. Most were dead, and the rest were dying. Daniels reloaded his M1 and commenced to put the dying beasts out of their misery. The sun now had dipped below the horizon and the only light came from the flickering flames of the fires spread about the ruined city.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Douglas Gogerty published on June 10, 2009 6:14 PM.

"Ralph the Mutant" - Part One was the previous entry in this blog.

"Ralph the Mutant" - Part Two is the next entry in this blog.

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