Hey everyone! This is my second installment of my storyline featuring Shiloh, a hero concept. I would really appreciate some feedback and comments on this story. Thanks!
Part 2 of the “SHILOH Transmissions”. The first part provides context to the events recorded here. Please enjoy:
The rain was concrete, and the fog was a curtain. At least it helped hide the dead enemies on the erupting battlefield.
The valiant turret pounded rockets into clusters of masked soldiers, leaving nothing but inky, black smoke. Her creator stood close by, linked to her by a strand of brilliant blue light. The two were one, yet they fought like ten.
The storm raged on, with brilliant flashes of light illuminating the battlefield. However, those flashes weren’t lightning. A blurry figure, illuminated by the spear he wielded, tore through scores of the soldiers with finesse. Whatever enemies remained standing, his brother stood ready to finish them off.
In the rear stood two rain-soaked women, each armed with iron resolve and steely expressions. One brought life to her injured allies; the other supported by mitigating and reflecting the bullets as they came.
It was a potent team, and together, they fought through wave after wave of faceless KLG soldiers. With Shiloh’s support, however, it was complete.
It had been a month since Shiloh, a support mercenary, met with General Kurtz, leader of the KLG. She had been tasked to support a People’s Guard operation, one which a brilliant paramedic was involved in. The goal was clear: get in, slowly gain her trust, and bring her and her equipment to Kurtz. It was the last part that Shiloh wasn’t sure about. Betraying a caring medic like Flatline did not sit well with her. The idea soured her heart and stomach.
The fights against the KLG were also discouraging. She had grown up with the KLG, and contributed many years towards Kurtz’s projects. Him forcing Shiloh to fight against her countrymen violated her conscience. In pouring rain of all things.
“You really think you deserve this, don’t you? Damn ----” she muttered, expletives leaving her lips as she cleaned her gun off, wiping water and grit from the weapon’s crevasses.
Her team had just returned from a grueling offensive, one which drove the KLG back beyond the river. The victory rewarded the Guard with an old warehouse, surrounded by a ten foot high concrete barricade. On the inside, a dusty, yet well-lit compound sat adjacent to four smaller quarters. It was humble, but it offered rest and protection, and that was enough.
Shiloh, like the others, was worn out from the long, rainy night. In her exhaustion, she didn’t notice the storm had passed, leaving a dreary haze wafting through the city. A crescent moon hung above, gently illuminating the silent, haunting remains of a once-bustling city.
She had hardly gotten over her frustrated temper when the man with the turret walked up to her:
“You look unwell miss. Perhaps a rest would do you well?” The tall, broad-shouldered Italian spoke with a genteel, reassuring smile on his face, setting Shiloh at ease.
“Thank you Castellan, I’m sure the whole team is exhausted as well. You doing okay?” She asked, setting down her weapon on her tidy bunk.
“Ah, another good day is done! We were victorious, and are well-postured for yet another good day tomorrow! Fortunately, the rain cleaned by armor and my dear Stellina. Is such a blessing!”
Castellan had a great way of encouraging with his animated expressions and accent, picking up the mood with his energizing positivity. Shiloh couldn’t help herself but break a grin and laugh cheerfully.
“I wish I had your enthusiasm, the team and I could certainly use it. We could move mountains with it.” She glanced downward, her attention wandering from his. As if he was aware of her subtle, concealed discouragement, he thoughtfully waited a moment before replying:
“Miss Shiloh, we are the mountain. Our love pulls us together to face great challenges; we have overcome so much already. Yes, we will always stand together, no matter what we endure.”
His words resonated with confidence, yet with quiet peace. Shiloh didn’t know much about Castellan’s past, but she knew him and his family were hit hard by the war. He had lost more than most.
She gently smiled in response, musing on the Italian’s words. “Oh, I wanted to thank you for saving me back there", Shiloh quipped. *"Means a lot to me.” Her mood changed and her tense voice loosened up as she closed her weapons case on the table, ready for the morning.
He politely nodded, wished her a good night, and walked away into the misty evening.
Shiloh had nearly been blown apart by a grenade, saved at the last second by Castellan’s shield wall. Flatline had already revived poor Kaishi twice; a third time might’ve been too much for the medic to handle. This was a fate Shiloh didn’t want to tempt.
As the warehouse lights snapped off one by one, she lay down on her bunk, thinking about what Castellan told her, and who she truly was. Had she been a regular KLG soldier, Castellan would’ve been an enemy to her, a target in her rangefinder. The honorable brothers would be nothing more than boxes on a hit-list, “obnoxious threats” that were better dead than alive. All of her allies were traitors to Kurtz, yet they never once did her wrong. It was a thought she couldn’t reconcile. Putting it out of her mind, she pulled the covers over her shoulders, fading into a deep slumber. She couldn’t forget why she was there.
Her real target was in her sights.
Shiloh’s story will continue.