“Leoma, jam their communications and scramble the HiVE security drones,” I commanded and within moments I could see the HiVE fleet.

“Maintain radio silence, the drones will distract them. They will not be expecting much opposition, after all, they have never had any.” I said to the Red Guard.

“Should I initiate offensive protocol sigma?” Leoma asked.

“Just follow my lead,” I answered, paying attention to the GPS overlay. Hold it.... Wait for it... My attention was briefly caught by a photo of myself and some friends on Earth, resting on the dashboard of the cockpit. Samson, I wonder what kind of life he was living now. I wrenched my thoughts back to the present and not a moment too soon.

“Let them have it, initiate offensive protocol sigma,” I said.

"Confirmed," Leomma replied sending predetermined battle commands to the Red Guard, which directed them to intercept the Martian Marshals, who foolishly poured all their forces through the small opening in the roof of the cavern.

"Nexus, stay behind me." I heard Shade call over the comms from her HAF, which was now directly in front of me. Ever since I met her five years ago, she had assumed the role of my protector, no matter where I went. I admit it was a very odd behaviour but she would not speak about it and try as much as I could, I couldn't get her off her self imposed sentry duty. So I decided to resign my efforts and accept her decision, for now...

"Leomma, show me the area map," I asked and an image flickered on my HUD, most of the civilians had been evacuated but few remained. Without needing to give orders a few of my Red Guards, shielded the others so that they could escape. As I turned towards the main battle I saw Vengeance, another HAF, race past me toward the mix of combatants. It was a very well timed attack and it slowed down the advance of the Marshal's HAFs.

"Vengeance, cut down that broadcasting unit, we don't want any more guests," I said to Vengeance's pilot. I watched as the HAF advanced and activated it's sonic blades and halved its target.

"All units evacuation is complete, retreat to beta location. Vengeance, I need an exit." I transmitted to the Guard. The Red Guard disengaged the enemy and left the cavern through predetermined exits; all except Vengeance. It retreated a short distance, retrieved its canon and began powering up. The Marshals probably got wind of their predicament and I heard the commanders trying to order a retreat but they couldn't get through our communications scramble; my plan couldn't have worked better.

"You sure want to stick around Shade? This is only the beginning, things might get even more chaotic." I said through a private channel. She didn't bother replying... Why does she do this? Why be my protector? My thoughts were interrupted as I heard the signature click of Vengeance's weapon and then the cavern lit up. When the dust had settled only three HAFs remained and my exit was clear.

"Ezra, once again you have surpassed my expectations, thank you," I said to the pilot of Vengeance, as we left the cavern, our enemies defeated.

(To Be Continued...)