596 replies and 7 files omitted.
Silver stares at him for a few seconds, then tilts his head in confusion when he doesn't leave.
"Is something wrong?"
The translator raises a hoof, and for the first time, raises his voice
"Flieg, du narr!"
The drone, right in front of Silver, transforms in a brilliant flash of yellow-green into a grey pegasus, and then jumps up and takes flight towards the twilight.
Silver watches the drone slowly disappear into the distance.
"That got him to go. Strange. He almost looked my son, if I just got passing glance at him."
The private turns his golden eyes to Silver as he speaks, but has no comment.
"Well...we should return to others, see how they are doing. It would be really nice to sit down somewhere also..."
He starts holding the wound on his chest again, letting out a small groan of pain and discomfort.
It's definitely not the sort of thing that can be left untreated. The private does not say anything.
As they slowly trot back, he speaks to the private.
"You are quiet. What is wrong?"
"Are you sure? It does not seem like nothing."
“Well, until we find one, the rifle is going to have to stay here with the coffin.”
He looks down, and then back up
"Uh, I am fine."
Presumably, Silver should arrive at wherever he as walking to>>141687
Spark's call on the next action
Spark helps Miskobag on the stretcher and carries him inside.
Indeed he does. He looks at what the current situation is back by the trucks.
Slighted, Makade remains outside
Spark and the doctor are able to place Miskobag on the stretcher, and carry him inside>>141690
If by "trucks" is meant the two that were shot to hell earlier, they are still there, and still in poor shape.
The one truck in front of the building, nearer the road, is being loaded with wounded ponies.
Silver decides to trot over to the truck being loaded, still holding his wound, and ask,
"Need any help?"
What can Spark see inside?
"Not at the moment. Could have used some help a few minutes ago, but now, we're about to head out."
"Sorry about that, soldier. Is there room for one more? I think I may need this wound looked at."
"Sure. Just sit on the end there."
Silver nods. As he does so, he calls Amber Grain over.
"Sergeant Amber Grain?"
Ammber Grain walks over, being right next to the truck, and perhaps about to sit in the passenger seat.
"Ah, you are here. After we drop wounded off at Town Hall, I want you to organize our attack on changeling position at grain elevator. You remember my plan for how to deal with them?"
"Blow them up from a distance" He says
"Precisely. Specifics of attack I leave to your discretion. Once I have this looked at..."
He winces as he pats the wound in his chest lightly.
"...I will join you."
"Yes Sir." He says
Silver is able to find an area to sit on the end of the truck. Inside, lying down are Saltlick, who is shivering - at least that is a sign of life - Bricsbuck, Sleetfall - who fell in the final attack - and several other ponies, especially those who had been outside. The truck goes on its way, moving forward, and drives to the Town Hall. The distance is less than a mile, and sure could have been done by cart, if only those were available in size and number.
Amber Grain gets out, as well as another pony in the back along with Silver, and they try to get the wounded out and inside
Spark, entering inside, sees a relatively normal reception room, with a two story entrance, hallways to each side, a few potted plants, a reception counter on the left, and a hallway straight forward.
Silver gets out as well, and assists in bringing wounded despite his injury and the discomfort it causes.
Indeed there is a bit of discomfort, but a stretcher is available, and the ponies are able to take the wounded, one by one, inside the town hall, to lay them out. Firm Heart, looking even more tired than before, looks at the ponies as they are layed out.
Silver gives Firm Heart a similarly tired smile during one of the drop offs.
"You should see other guys."
There is already an additional wounded pony there
Firm Heart looks down at Silver's wound.
Then he says
"This is just too many casualties, and they are too badly wounded. It's really fortunate that there was a medical clinic in town, and medical supplies here, because otherwise we'd be out of plasma and other supplies."
"Again. And yes, we are quite fortunate."
Silver looks at the additional pony.
"When did he get here?"
"A couple ponies brought him in here earlier. Carried him the whole way. Good thing. He's terribly wounded."
"Right, I remember now. I am glad he got back here successfully."
Silver continues to help bring wounded in, if any are left. Once that is done, he sits down in the makeshift infirmiry.
Silver sits down in the room. Some of the other wounded are laying unconscious. Some are shivering or near convulsions. And some are conscious, able to sit up. Firm Heart goes from pony to pony, mostly starting with plasma and morphine. A pair of ponies, who seem to be among those from the 332nd, help in parts of this process. Silver is not addressed yet.
Deciding he can't just sit there and do nothing, Silver goes to Firm Heart.
"I may not have formal training or education, but over course of my career I have learned how to treat many different kinds of combat wounds. If there is anything you need assistance with, I am more than willing and able to help."
"Why don't you try giving morphine, and inserting IVs?" He says
Silver nods, and starts giving the wounded such treatments. He particularly starts with those shivering or nearing convulsions, as those seem to be the most in need.
Silver is able to insert these. It helps that most are barely conscious. One of the female ponies comes down, and helps distribute blankets. The plasma seems to help with the shivering.
"We are going to need to send many of these, or maybe most, to Wald."
"Yes...we will be short-hooved for some time. We did however recover logistics truck from changelings, so we will be able to send them to Wald swiftly."
He looks at the wounded Brisbuck.
"It also could have been much worse for us..."
"I don't know what the Changelings look like"
He injects some substance into an IV
"But I doubt its better."
"Mass casualties on Changeling side. I think only three changelings remained alive by time we took wounded here."
He stops, and looks over to Silver
"Damn. That is extensive."
After a minute or so, he is able to get to Silver
"Alright, let's take a look at you."
He comes closer, and inspects Silver's wound
"Wow. He got you good, didn't he?"
"Point blank with rifle. I think it goes without saying...it is not pleasant to breathe."
"I bet. Wow. Okay, let's get you some plasma. We'll need blood too, but we don't have that. Some more morphine, and some tonic."
"Hopefully this is last time I nearly die today."
"Hopefully. The sun has set. Time for the night..."
He injects Silver with something, and tries to spread some sort of cream, or something over the wound, which is rather painful
He groans in pain.
"One more thing we must do before Vale is secure...then we can free those ponies from cocoons..."
"What is that?" He asks
"But whatever you do, get in contact with Command, and with the 23rd, and get some ambulances to get this ponies out of here."
"That I will. First is clearing last changeling holdout. Grain elevator. I do not plan on sending ponies in, rather I will just bring it down around its defenders using mortar and captured AT gun."
"Could the grain elevator cut off the road?" He asks
"It is near Old Mecc, I believe."
I suppose Spark would ask for Miskobag to be taken in for examination.
"Oh, you have a patient? What's his name?"
"Mhmm. Does he have an ID with him?"
"We didn't take it with us. He is swelling is getting worse. We are so worried. Can you please help us?"
"I see" She looks up. It's a white unicorn mare, with wheat colored mane. "Let me say and... By Celestia, it's a wolf!"
She looks down, and then back, and goes over to the phone
"Uh, one moment please..."
The doctor comes forward
"Hello. I did my residency here."
The mare answers,
"Oh, did you?"
"Yes, and could this wolf here see Doctor Miley? I have a rapport with him"
"I've been told that he should see a specialist on Wolf anatomy. Doctor Hill Air is our available specialist."
"Oh, well, yes. Is Dr. Bellows still in charge here."
"Sort of. He's section head."
"I'd like to talk to him"
"Uh, I'll see if he's available..."
Spark wonders what will happen next.
The mare answers:
"Well... At least you can go see Dr. Hill Air. Bellows will be available in fifteen or so minutes. You can go to Room 345. On the third floor, of course."
The doctor mentions to Spark
"I hope I can use some of my connections to have this done with as few questions as possible, and maybe with as many resources as possible."
"Thanks. I'll make it up to you."
The ponies are now free to move around the hospital... well, freeish
, and may either go to room 345, or elsewhere
Might as well see room 345, get Miskobag comfortable, and then explore.
"I know where that is! Just go up the stairs right here, and it's down this central hallway"
The ponies go up the stairs, which isn't entirely pleasant. Miskobag has his head up, looking around. Then they go down the hallway, and find rooms 350 and greater.
"Or.. maybe it was on the far hallway."
Then the creatures go over to the far hallway, and nearer the end, find room 345.
"Okay, I think the doctor will be hear shortly. If not, I'll go find him."
It's a relatively mundane room with an examination table, a small steel table over nearby, as well as a couple cabinets, including those above a counter and those under. Miskobag makes his way on top of the examination table, and Waabishki sits down next to him. Hill Air is not there yet, of course.
Spark goes over to Miskobag.
"How is it?"
Miskobag presses his paws down into the foam underneath
"It's... fluffier than I expected. And it's warm here."
"That's good. Be sure to rest now."
"I've been trapped in a coffin for hours now. I'll be fine to be up for now." He presses down again.
"But this is much more comfortable"
Waabishki looks worried, sitting and looking up at Miskobag
""That may be an issue then..." he says
"Hence why we are going to remove that issue."
Firm heart pulls out this new bullet -- a much harder task that those before, given how deep it penetrates - gives Silver a new tonic, patches up the wound, and lets Silver go.
"It's not really enough, but it is the best I can do for now" He says
"You have done more than many could have. Thank you, Firm Heart."
Silver gets up from the table.
And Silver is up, ready to go about. In that time, more ponies have arrived, including the other wounded, and the translator private, who is impressed into assisting
"Alright. Next time I return, it will be after our successful liberation of Vale."
Silver smiles back, and leaves, heading to join up with Amber Grain and the ponies preparing to attack.
Over the clouds that hang in the far west is the last pale orange of twilight. The sky above is already bright and starry, with a dark blue tint, and more stars than can be counted. The waning gibbous moon makes its presence known, looming over a portion of the opposite horizon. Few lights are on in the town. The town hall, the post office, a couple dinners and homes have lights their inhabitants never turned off, but these are not enough to break the darkness of night, and seem to be even less than this same town would have under more normal circumstances. It is below freezing, and what wind blows down the valley is unwelcoming, especially as it brings the sounds of distant thunder.
Silver's platoon - and it is indeed now Silver's
platoon - has been reduced in strength by about 19 from its original strength of 47, with heavy losses among both rifleponies and officers. However, the platoon still has all four of its machine guns and the mortar. The truck, no longer being used to transport casualties, is available to pull either of the two anti-tank canons - one off which is already hooked up. The available ponies are assembled in the area of town hall, with faces like Amber Grain, private Cornflake, the Black colt machine gunner of B squad, the cream colored pegasus of B squad, and the pink pegasus corporal of A squad, and even Hazerlred... But not Brisbuck, Saltlick, Sleetfall, or Frost Bark.
They are at the ready
Silver turns his face up to Luna's night, feeling the bitter cold of the air around him. He then looks at the gathered ponies.
"Alright Ponies. This is it. One final effort is all that remains. These changelings have caused many casualties among us, and have injured or even killed many good ponies. Now is when it ends. We will go to their final hideout and bring it down on top of them. We will hardly give them chance to cause more pain and suffering. We do this, and Vale will finally be free!"
There are cheers, though perhaps not as many as before, when they sought to take the dairy plant
"Kick them out" is one of the remarks heard from the stallions
Even where the enthusiasm is not overflowing, there is no doubt of the looks of hardened determination on their faces reflected in the dim street light outside town hall. Silver's ponies are ready
Silver heads for the truck, stopping by Amber Grain along the way.
"Excellent work organizing everything."
"Thank you" He says
The ponies go southwards through town, with the truck in the lead, until they advanced to not far out from the grain elevator. It's ever so slightly further away from the town, but still within rifle range of the roofs. It's flanked by hills, but these are slightly further away, and none are as obviously tall as the one north of town. Silver can see the rail line, and two trucks in front of the grain elevator. There are three lights on on the grain elevator, as before, which show off corrugated steel, steel silos, and concrete. The buildings are massive by the standards of Vale, at least 40 feet or more in height and also long, though they are narrow in construction. Not much is illuminated besides the lights, and the lights make it harder for the eyes to adjust to the night.
Can the bottom of the grain elevator be seen, at least compared to the background?
With the aid of the lights, yes
"Alright. Let us get set up. Our mortar and AT gun will be focus of attack, mortar will bombard from above while AT gun takes out bottom section. Our rifles and MGs will watch for changrlings trying to flee from building."
"Alright, let's set up the positions. Where do you want the rifleponies and the machine guns, and how many of them are there, if you know?"
The truck is not particularly silent, and also has headlights that need to be specifically turned off.
The truck backs the anti-tank gun into position, assuming Silver doesn't want it to be horse-drawn into position
What kinds of formations or features of the landscape besides the river are around that can be used?
Like the dairy plant, there is a hill beyond the grain elevator, though this one is a bit lower and lacking the well defined ridge lines. Past the grain elevator the valley is slightly wider, with plowed fields with irrigation berms that define the end of the fields, and trees at points. There is a house or two much further away, but not much in the way of structures outside the town.
Is the hill on their end of the grain elevator, or on the other end?
I'm not sure what you mean.
The geography from left to right/north to south is,
Hill, railway, grain elevator, roadway, river, empty space (likely a fallow field) hill.
The valley runs east to west, with the town west of the grain elevator, and fields east of it. The grain elevator itself is "longer than it is wide," with the four silos stretched along by the railway.
Like, is the hill between the ponies and the grain elevator, or is the grain elevator between the ponies and the hill?
The hill is to the side. The grain elevator would occupy a 90 degree intersection between the hill and the ponies.
Silver points out the hill.
"It may be advantagous to pull gun to that hill. Vary our angle of approach from our angle of fire."
"Heh. No way in hell we're getting this anti-tank gun up that hill, at least not without a lot of effort from four or five of our colts pulling it. Way too steep and rocky to drive a two and a half town truck. There's a reason the Changelings want this valley so bad, and it's because it's the only place in a hundred miles you can pull a heavy gun, a tank, or a freight truck between the Unicorn ranges."
"Hmm. In that case, right here is as good spot to attack from as any."
"Makes sense. But what about the machine guns and rifles?"
How distant is the hill, exactly?