Assault on the Walls

Tarian was standing upon the mostly constructed walls, staring out into the slowly building mass of creatures. There were a few types of monsters swirling about each other in that swarm, but the bulk was what the population had taken to calling Ogres. In fact, it was the constant harrying of the colonists by those Ogres that had prompted the building of the walls as rapidly as possible.

“Tarian, is it me or is that mass still growing?” Keldon asked once he was standing next to Tarian.

Keeping his eyes fixed on the new threat Tarian replied, “It seems to grow by the second, even though I know it’s not that rapid.”

“I’m glad we built as much of the walls as we did,” Keldon added as he leaned upon the railing in front of them.

“It’s nice to have though I wish we didn’t need it.”

“It bothers you that those things…”

“Yeah, it does bother me. I mean the only way that the results make sense is if someone was making all of these things in a lab.”

“Normally I wouldn’t argue with you Tarian,” Keldon said somberly.

“Normally?”

“Yeah, but Sherry who is very good at using her scanners swears that there is no possibility of any kind of lab on this planet.”

Turning to face Keldon Tarian asked his friend directly, “Then how do you explain that these Ogres are based on the DNA of our missing people?”

“I can’t explain it. Have you changed your mind on letting the rest of the colonists know about that?”

“There is no way I’m going to let our people know that somehow these strange monsters are based upon the members of the colony that have gone missing.”

Keldon stood and brought a pair of binoculars to his eye. “Tarian?!”

“What now?”

“We’re going to be testing the walls sooner than we thought,” Keldon said as he pointed at the rushing monsters with one hand as his other shot out to his radio.

However Tarian was faster, and before the explanation was out of Keldon’s mouth, Tarian was announcing to everyone, “We are under attack, we need every available to come man the wall’s defenses now.”

The fledgling city’s response was slower than Tarian would have liked, but fortunately, there was some automation to the defenses. And as the monsters got within a couple hundred of feet, those automated defenses began to fire upon the onrushing horde of monsters.

As the defenders were clambering to the top of the wall, Tarian and Keldon had already joined the automated defense and were shooting targets as soon as they could find them. The bolts of energy launched from their rifles and speed towards the monstrous mass of bodies below.

By the time any of the monsters reached the wall, and safety from the automated systems, they had been thoroughly thinned out. Fortunately, by then the wall had become fully manned, and they quickly dispatched the remaining invaders.

Letting his rifle fall as far as the strap would allow Keldon rested upon the railing and asked Tarian, “What now?”

“Now we need to identify the types of things that had just assaulted us and collect samples before we burn the bodies,” Tarian answered promptly.

“I’m sick and tired of having to make new entries into out species database.” One of the men behind the two leaders said.

Both of them shared a look and gave a knowing nod to the frustration before they led a group of volunteers to carry out Tarian’s directive. As they searched the bodies collected the bodies from the field they were able to find two other monsters besides the Ogres.

The first of the new creatures was shorter than the ogres but taller than all of the humans in the city. They were also a very pale green, in fact, if Tarian were just judging them based on their skin, he would have thought that they were just sick people. But two things marked these things as something other than people. The first was the tusks jutting out of their mouths and the second was the extremely long arms that all seemed to be corded with muscle.

The other creature that had been charging the walls was a short thing, about the size of a thirteen-year-old. All of them had dark green skin that made Tarian think they were just children of the more prominent and paler green creatures. He assumed that the tusks and arms would grow as they grew up.

He waited as Sherry made her way through the piles collecting samples. Sherry and Liam would go through the DNA samples they were currently collecting to see if the one obtained before had been damaged in some way. Though deep down he knew that what the two were presently gathering would share the results from the previous ones, but he was hoping they were flawed.

One of the younger colonists, whose Tarian could not remember came running out of the wall and whispered into his ear. “Two more people have gone missing, Tarian.”

“How?”

“We don’t know sir.”

Tarian dropped his head in sorrow and silently cursed at the distraction that had been so well done that it had cost him two more of his colonists. And as soon as Sherry and Liam were finished with their duties, Tarian and Keldon tossed an accelerant upon the piles before they touched the collection of bodies with a torch and then all of the colonists watched as the bonfires sprang to life keeping the oncoming darkness at bay.