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August 13, 2434

Barren, Mitchell D., Staff Sergeant

4th Fleet, 4th Fleet Security Forces (FSF)

Dear Dad,

I had every intention of addressing this letter to Mom.  We almost made it through the entire week without any serious incident.  We are getting through the training requirements quickly and will be certified and out on our own soon enough.

Fleet Intel picked up so GFI chatter the day before yesterday and we were deployed to check it out.  Fortunately, this wasn’t anything like last time. The GFI position had no idea we knew about their presence.

FleetCom wanted prisoners so we couldn’t just identify the target and call in an air or orbital strike.  When we got to their position, which was about 2,400 kilometers away from the nearest settlement, we discovered they were in the middle of constructing some kind of tunnel system.

It was safe to assume they were planning on constructing some kind of permanent station that would provide them with protection from even an air or orbital strike.  They had some intense digging equipment and were well underway.

If we would have had a larger fleet presence in orbit there is a decent enough chance they would have been spotted much sooner but with the coalition fleet spread as thin as it currently is, things like this are more likely to be taking place.  I wouldn’t doubt it if there were more than just this one around the planet.

It is still a mystery how they were able to get all of this equipment past our orbital defense system but that is more than likely the reason FleetCom wanted the Wolfpack to nab a few prisoners.

We landed about two kilometers outside of their likely sensor range and managed to find three decent vantage points that provided extra concealment.  Once we had a reasonable idea of what was happening and their security situation, we came up with a plan to grab one of their sentries. I wish words could describe our luck.

We were keeping a close eye on a few of the more remote sentries they had placed when we noticed that a GFI officer was checking on the sentries with someone that wasn’t in a GFI uniform.  We couldn’t get a positive ID on either, which was no surprise but after 12 hours of close observation, we saw a pattern.

The officer and his companion were checking the sentries every four hours and at the midpoint between his checks, there was a sentry change.  Huge oversight maybe? Nerves? I don’t know. We identified the most isolated post and waited for them to do their next check.

Another one of the nifty devices provided by our Special Forces friend were those new laser pistols with a decapacitation feature.  The military calls them the Night Pistols because of their effect and how silent they are. I believe civilians call them stun-munitions.  The charge in each round is enough to bring down any man or woman and can deliver its charge through up to four inches of any kind of armor.

After 15 hours on sight, we saw the officer and his friend making their rounds and we readied our new toys and closed in.  We caught the sentries by surprise and had them incapacitated and out of sight before the officer arrived. We took up positions and as expected, the officer and his friend were right on time.  Idiots.

They were even easier to take down than the two sentries.  Since there was five of us and four of them, we each dragged one out of range while our instructor provided us with overwatch.  We called for a shuttle pick up and notified FleetCom about our prisoners. The GFI contingent never knew we had been there.

A battleship was dispatched and in orbital position above the GFI encampment and once we were out of range, a massive orbital strike was conducted.  I have to be honest, it was not the most awesome feeling. While the strike was every bit as impressive as any other orbital strike I have ever seen, the reality was hundreds of men and women were just blasted without ever having seen it coming.

I know what they are and what they have done.  The GFI has murdered hundreds of thousands of civilians during the course of this conflict.  They kill indiscriminately and had we not taken this encampment out it is likely they would have used it as yet another one of their murderous bases.  I just don’t like the idea of not seeing it coming. A soldier should be allowed to die with honor and dignity.

That being said, you should have seen it.  I have seen orbital bombardments from frigates and destroyers, but never a battleship.  We found debris several miles away from the impact site. No survivors were located after our search and none of their equipment was found intact.  I don’t know what happened to our prisoners once they were collected but that isn’t my place to wonder.

I hope that everything is going well back home.  I hope that the fleet is leaving you alone. I know they spent a long time trying to bring you back but I don’t know if you were ever aware they tried at one point getting me to try talking you into it.  I refused. I respect your decision, Dad. I know it was a difficult one. As far as I am concerned, you made the right choice for you and our family. Anyone who says different is a fool and would never understand.

On another note.  The Doctor here, I can’t remember her name, the one Russell has been working with, is demanding that Russell be allowed to come out here and work with her.  It is amusing really. FleetCom has even started begging me to ask her to back off but she isn’t having any of that. They are starting to cave so let Russell know there is a chance he might be able to get some field experience before he even graduates.

I love you all and hope that you are well.  I am planning on taking some leave once the Wolfpack is finished with this training to come home and spend some time with you for a couple weeks.  Keep the letters and Tootsie rolls coming. Maybe even increase the candy. I have had to resort to hiding it because the rest of the Wolfpack enjoys good candy too.



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