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- "Here we earn our titles."
- — Lord Saladin
Matthius leapt from his chair as the antique radio sprung to life. The old mechanic had been waiting anxiously for the call.
"This is Devrim to Neu Turbach. Neu Turbach, do you copy?" The scout's voice crackled through the old speaker.
"Devrim! This is Matthius," the old man replied. "I hear you. What news?"
"Well, the good news is that Joacham is safe," Devrim said. "The Guardian broke him out early this morning with Queen Mara's help. Part of a larger rescue effort. He's back at the Farm now. A bit bruised, but no worse for wear."
Matthius's knees weakened, and he steadied himself against the tabletop. He had been praying silently for his son's safe return ever since he was shot down over the Last City. Waves of relief washed over him.
"Oh, thank goodness," he said, choking back tears. "This is a blessing."
"It is. But…" the aging scout continued reluctantly, "there's bad news as well. You've got incoming. A Shadow Legion patrol on ground transports… 25 to 30 of them."
Matthius's relief curdled into fear. "And how long until they arrive?"
"ETA… 23 minutes," Devrim replied sympathetically.
"Meine Güte…" Matthius whispered to himself.
Devrim sensed the civilian's shock. "Eyes up!" he barked, as if to a cadet. "Remember you trained for this. Get everyone to stations; have runners arm the charges. Once they break the tree line, fire and fall back. And don't be afraid to blow the explosives. Your houses aren't worth your lives. If they overrun you, rendezvous in the forest."
Matthius blinked rapidly, collecting himself. "Ja, ja. I remember. Thank you, Devrim." He dropped the transmitter and sprinted from the room, raising the alarm for the village.
"I'll send rescue craft as soon as I can," Devrim reassured the empty room. "And good luck."
- Bungie (2023/2/28)