Thundering louder than a thousand horses in a full gallop was the rush of the six monstrous dogmen with slobbering howling hyena heads. Glowing red eyes and unnatural cries reminiscent of aramaic and old Egyptian rang in the tunnels as they roared in their fell voices. More than one of the posse members felt their laughter choke in their lungs, but not one of them hesitated to pull their triggers at the streaking monsters coming at them on all fours. Karl just kept on laughing. Nothing like a tree being thrown at you with enough force to turn the hapless pine into a grenade to get your adrenaline pumping.
With the sheer amount of fire the twenty P50s brought to the table there was no way to avoid the tsunami of lead that came the hyena headed dogmens’ way. Bohdan could see them screech and grunt and see the waves of angry gnats bathe their skin in a hundred impacts, but as he’d expected they were getting penetrations, but little damage. 5.7. Was a great round that could pierce body armor with very limited recoil and size, but the little angry bees weren’t enough to bring down an angry pachyderm on the charge. These monsters could wrestle an elephant and eat it alive so this was a problem. That was why they had the much lauded plan B.
As they drew nearer the beasts stood up on two hock legs panting with lulling tongues from their sprint, and cries from the hail of fire. Blood was streaking through their thick black fur hides, but they weren’t slowing down. Or weren’t until Randall started burning eyes with Bohdan’s laser with quick well aimed flashes at the inhumanly fast monsters.
First one then two stumbled and howled covering their eyes, and banging into their fellows in the growing tight space as the cavern narrowed toward the cave entrance. Bohdan shook his head in amazement while the charge stumbled to a confused mess right on top of their charges. Bohdan had just enough time to turn to Sarge before he saw the man surge forward and slide onto all fours before scrambling up to their det cord with a K Bar knife in one hand.
Horror and realization hit at the same time. The det cord was cut by the tree turned shrapnel bombs. Sarge must have already set off the charge to no effect, and was running into the lion's den to reset the cord past the severed line. Thinking fast Bohdan charged forward, breaking out one of his incendiary grenades as he ran.
“Inceneraries while they’re dazed! Cover Sarge!” Holdfast yelled before Bohdan could give the order. All the better since the President was too caught up in the moment to get his mouth to catch up to his orders as he threw his nade right into the balls of a big old brute with white streak of fur going up his belly and neck. Ten more grenades followed and detonated in a wild crescendo of liquid flames and squeals of pain. Fun fact. Nothing likes being caught on fire. Or at least nothing that Bohdan had run into yet.
The hungry flames burned and consumed the fur and snaked their way over the monsters who began to flail and roll on the ground to no avail. More gunfire hit them as commando four and one flanked Sarge while he worked. His team slid next to him in a rush. Now that the make shift sappers were given a task of more engineering necessity than proper militia work they acted without giving the monsteres mind. Nothing like a job requiring your complete concentration to make you forget the howling burning demon freaks screeching some twenty feet in front of you. Before long they’d cut the damaged section of cord, reattached a new cord, and were running the line back to the cave where things weren’t quite as danger close.
Comando Three took the center and covered the flanking teams as they hopped back to the cave. Saint John was making beautiful shots as he went. Bohdan saw that half the monsters were not only burning but hamstrung crawling on the ground in agony now that the tendons on the inside of their reverse knees had been hobbled by concentrated rounds. Gosh that kid was good. Bohdan was reminded why they’d poached him before any of the older crews like Holdfast’s team nabbed him. Talent like that was a hot commodity in New Venice.
Just as one of the beasts had picked itself up, and was about to make a break for the treeline all four commando teams reached the cave. Bohdan pointed at Sarge who slapped the detonator with gusto. The rocking explosion made the cave rattle and buck, but the walls held. The explosives crew knew their business. Still, the charges weren’t meant for ripping flesh so there was less shrapnel than desired. Bohdan knew they had to act to make sure the beasts were down and out.
“Rip em apart boys! Don’t get close enough for them to claw you, but send him back to their daddies screaming!” Bohdan yelled as he charged back out of the cave. This time Mr. Kelley was ready for him, and charged out ahead of the headstrong President. Annoying, but Blood was in command. Bohdan probably should let Karl do more of the wild berserk stunts. That was his forte after all.
The carnage was horrific even without Bohdan leading the charge. Pieces of squirming, and moaning monsters were everywhere. Slobbering hyena heads whined like dogs in pain mixed with woman keening. No pity or mercy was shown by the men with their blood lust up.
Sorry monsters. You should’ve left the children alone. The work was bloody and fast as at this close and dirty range even 5.7 will hurt a grizzly. Let alone one that had been lit on fire, shot, and then blown to pieces. Soon there was nothing left but bloody chard piles of flesh on the cavern floor. Good work all around with only a few injuries to show for it. The question was were these all of them? And if they were, where was Sally?
A question Bohdan felt only the grove ahead of them had the answers for. So after forming a security circle around their killing field, and slapping an embarrassed Randall for his excellent laser work, the commando teams formed up their posse before filtering into the waiting arms of the strange glowing grove.