The God Wars

Chapter Thirty-nine:

To the Wall

By Dwayne MacInnes

Just after the sunset, Hermes returned to the trenches where Ares set up camp. The chewed up ground contained bodies from both sides that lay strewn across the landscape. Jagged scraps of bronze and heaping piles of stone told of the combat that took place earlier in the day. The god of thieves looked the worse for wear. His tunic usually clean and white was now torn and dirty. His well kempt hair was in disarray.

"I hope you have faired better on ground than I did in the air," Hermes said.

"I fear not," Ares grumbled. "However, tomorrow we will gain the city. I am sure of it."

"I believe you have said that before," Hermes mumbled under his breath.

"What was that?" snapped the god of war.

"Nothing," Hermes lied. "I was wondering if you had seen Zeus."

Ares forgot about Zeus. The king of the gods was free to do as he pleased. However, Ares was certain that Zeus would have had a hand in the combat. But the god of war had not seen Zeus since that morning.

"I have not. Maybe he has returned to Olympus."

Hades now walked over to his companions. "I have not seen Zeus either. Perhaps the Otherworlders have killed him as well," Hades replied grimly.

"If that is so then it is imperative that we destroy these mortals before they kill the rest of us," Ares stated coldly.

After Ares thought for a bit, he finally spoke again, "Tomorrow when the sun rises we will hit them with everything we have. We must take the city tomorrow!"

M4 Sherman Tank

As the sun broke over the Dragonspine Mountains, the defenders in the trenches outside the city wall could see a sea of undead soldiers marching towards them in the dawn mist. Amongst the reanimated corpses of fallen warriors, the 10-foot tall bronze Talos towered over their companions.

General Crist had not spent the night in idleness. He knew that Ares would push for one major assault on the trenches. The sad realization is that Crist also knew that he could not prevent Ares from taking them. He only hoped he could make it as costly as possible.

The artillery pieces General Crist had ordered moved into Atlantis itself in order to keep them from falling into enemy hands. It was unlikely that Ares would be able to use them against the defenders but he could not afford to lose them. Crist also had to contend with the fact that he had used a lot of the ammunition for the guns in the previous day's rolling barrage.

King Podaistas came to the trenches in the night. The general and the monarch made plans and prepared defenses well into the early predawn hours. Now the king awaited back on the city walls. He would have to give a good account of himself once Ares took the trenches.

The advancing undead did cover half the distance between the two trench works when the familiar hum of aircraft broke the still air. General Crist was saddened to learn that the previous day's battle had cost him five of his fighters and seven of the torpedo bombers. The aircraft laden with bombs flew low towards the encroaching army. They did not worry about dragons or griffins anymore. The beasts of Hermes were vanquished the day before by the aircraft.

* * * * *

Ares was not surprised to see the planes fly towards his army, there was nothing he could do to prevent their attack. He had to rely on his numbers to withstand the air assault. There would be no retreats today, just the order to move onward and forward.

The bombs tumbled down through the air whistling on their descent. As the impacted with the earth, great geysers of dirt and body parts erupted into the air. The undead just closed ranks around the gaping holes created by the explosions.

Soon the artillery began to rain their ordinance upon the undead. The barrage was not as devastating as the day before. However, the damage was still considerable. But like with the bombing run the undead pushed onward heedless of the damage being inflicted on them.

The aircraft then began to dive and fire their machineguns into the oncoming army. The .30 and .50 rounds chewed up the warriors and left the Talos undamaged. When the undaunted dead were within range, the men in the trenches opened up with their guns. Bullets flew through the air and ripped into the reanimated soldiers.

Ares deliberately held Hermes and Hades with his Necro-lords back. He wanted to release them when the time was right. Plus, he did not want to risk losing another god to these humans.

The Sherman tanks fired the guns from outside the city walls. They aimed their shells specifically at the bronze giants. The Shermans were able to shoot many arms and legs off resulting in huge explosions of steam and hot ichor flying into the air. The stricken giants stopped in their tracks and would simply topple over often crushing some undead beneath them.

* * * * *

The defenders kept up a hail of fire as the undead army marched closer toward the trenches. The lead elements would fall only to have their companions trample them. The waves of reanimated warriors crept ever closer to the trenches.

General Crist knew that the holding the trenches any longer against Ares undead would be futile. The number of soldiers he had were nowhere near the numbers Ares had available. Therefore, as the advanced elements of Ares' soldiers reached the trenches Crist ordered a pull back to the city walls.

* * * * *

Ares smiled to see the defenders pulling out of the trenches. The god of war looked over at his fellow gods. He raised his bladed-left hand and pointed towards the trenches.

"Now!" Ares cried to his companions. "Now, we will take the city!"

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Douglas Gogerty published on January 27, 2010 5:20 PM.

"Reunited..." - Chapter Fourteen was the previous entry in this blog.

"Reunited..." - Chapter Fifteen is the next entry in this blog.

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