Beauty in the machine
() looked into the dust kicked up by the creeping barrage. While from the outside he looked like any other warrior examining the battlefield he was about to march into, in fact he wasn't really looking into the swirling clouds of dust. Instead, he was scanning over his section of the advance, a space measuring 100 metres in front and 5 metres either side of him. He had pre programmed this radius into his ocular implants, so when he swept his vision over it, his ocular implants scanned and filtered every image they got before relaying the resulting information to his servo implants which in turn relayed the information to the rest of the vanguard. The information collected by the legionaries on the ground was then combined by Captain () with the information they had received from reconnaissance drones and previous probing attacks before being relayed back to the vanguard and their support units. The result was an unmatched amount of information at the fingertips of every single member of the assault, allowing them to see points of likely resistance, confirmed traps, likely murder points and a thousand other pieces of information about the battlefield.
Soon another piece of data was added to this picture of the battlefield. In exactly thirty three seconds, the first shell of the creeping barrage would fall two metres in front of (). Sure enough it fell but instead it fell two metres and thirty five centimetres in front of (), a piece of information his servo implants related straight to the gunnery crews. Sure enough, with the information from his and the rest of the vanguard's servo implants, the gunnery crews were able to adjust their aim accordingly and correct flaws in their calculations.
As they did and each shell fell exactly two metres in front of () as he marched through a preplotted and pre cleared route through the fortresses surrounding mine fields, he smiled. This was warfare at its most beautiful. An ancient Terran artist had once replied when asked how he made his sculptures that he removed everything unnecessary. Such was the XVIIIth's way of war. Their shared view of battlefield removed anything unnecessary and the result was war at its most beautiful. Fluid, mechanical, efficient. It wasn't just war, it was art. The most beautiful, austere, pure form of art man could create, like a well lubricated machine, every cog and gear perfectly in time with its fellows, always expending just enough energy for maximum efficiency. Never more, never less.
Within three minutes forty nine seconds, () had passed through the minefield. Beside him, his squad were converging towards the same point as him, the same point as the three other squads of their sector of the assault, a gaping hole in the fortresses walls. Over their heads into the same hole went streams of heavy bolter, volkite, plasma, las and frag missiles, each aimed in accordance with information relayed from the vanguard's ocular implants. Within a minute, the heavy weapons fire transferred its focus to the walls around the breach. As everything else in the assault it was precisely timed and targeted. Reconnaissance drones and ocular implants of the vanguard had identified weapons emplacements on the walls that could inflict heavy casualties on an assaulting force and so, once the assault force was within unaugmented visual range, the support squads switched their fire to those emplacements.
Advancing over the mound of rubble in the breach, the legionaries kept the appearance of utter silence as they opened fire, instead communicating via data blurts to their shared tactical overview, telling each other of potentially dangerous weapons and eliminating those before turning their weapons on less dangerous las rifle wielding troops. The methodical nature of the fighting was comforting, reliable. Beautiful () thought again. The perfect synchronicity was beautiful.
Edited by Sigismund229, 07 November 2016 - 12:12 AM.