Chapter 39:Sweeping up the stragglers
Morning comes and goes, and eventually it is noon again. After intense fighting, we finally have retaken most of the city.
What remains of the rebel's main army is at the far edge of the city, trying to make a last stand despite the fact that they have neither supplies nor defensive capabilities. They lack supplies because what supplies they had were in a supply train which they prepared for a final push towards the Capitol; we captured that supply train and now posses all their artillery, ammunition, many of their hovercrafts, almost all of their vehicles, and quite a few guns. Now we get to see how the rebels like being on the other side of the slaughter.
While we gun down rebels who are standing without any way to shield themselves, we march slowly closer. As we Fire and Advance, the noose tightens around the necks of the rebels. However, it appears at least one rebel is not ready to give up yet.
As I kneel down to load a magazine into my machine gun, an arrow hisses above me. It goes right through the space of air where my head previously was, and it buries itself into the the throat of the peacekeeper behind me. I look up to see who the firer of the arrow was.
He is not the Mockingjay.
This rebel, whoever he is, wears a modified District 13 officers uniform. He looks eerily familiar, but in the heat of battle my brain will not waste time figuring out the identity of the threat when getting rid of him is more important.
Plus the name tag on his uniform is too small to read.
Rolling out of the way of another arrow, I fire at him.
He dodges out of the way, sending two more arrows at me.
I am able to dip out of the way of both of them, and while he is behind the cover of a wall I sprint towards him.
He notches another arrow, and pulls it to full length with it aimed at my heart. With an angry expression, he releases the arrow.
I guess this is it. Oddly enough, it has not registered with my mind that I am about to die soon.
It turns out that is because I am not about to die soon.
Fortunately for me (but not for this archer), his bow jams.
While this rebel archer fumbles in frustration to unjam the arrow, I cover the distance between us.
Using the butt of my machine gun, I swing down with the intent of smashing his skull.
He dodges out of the way and pulls out a combat knife.
He attempts to stab at my throat, but I parry with my bayonet. Eventually I get the bayonet stuck in the wall behind him when he dodges a lunge.
Not bothering to waste precious seconds freeing it, I back away before the rebel can stab me. I pull out my own dagger, and a knife fight ensues.
I try to swing at his armorless belly, but he is able to dodge back. He tries to swing down at my side, but I parry and cut his hand in the process.
Yelping in pain, he drops the knife. I try to stab him, but he grabs my dagger and keeps it from his throat.
Improvising, I turn my shoulder around. This rips the knife from his hands while simultaneously hitting his head against the back of the wall he is against.
He slumps to the ground unmoving.
I still do not know why, but I have the bad habit of checking the pulse. This time, he is not dead.
Out cold, maybe, but not dead.
I call to some other soldiers, and three approach.
"This man is unconscious; take this prisoner back to the camp with the others."
They carry the prisoner back, and I can not shake the feeling that there is something familiar about him.
Still, I am sure they will figure it out back in the holding cells.
I go to join the rest of the soldiers in wiping out the remaining hundred or so rebels. As I do so, a peacekeeper approaches me.
"Thread wants you and your division to meet him back in the camp."
There are so many other divisions in this final part of the battle that a single division can be spared for whatever he needs me for.
I call my division, and we head back to the city park while the rest of the peacekeepers finish off the outnumbered and doomed rebels.
It is amazing to think that I was looking dear in the face just two days ago, and now virtually the entire rebel army was wiped out with surprisingly low Peacekeeper casualties. I am sure that whatever the Honorable Headpeacekeeper Thread has to ask of me will not be difficult to overcome.
We march back and I await what orders I may get.