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This is a fanon I'm writing as a side project to The Emerald Wolfhounds, set during the Rectan war in the early 80s. JimmyHatesReavers 22:16, December 23, 2012 (UTC)

Introduction

In 1981, the Principality of Belka began expanding its borders, annexing territory from its neighbours.

The Republic of Recta fiercely resisted these advances, forcing Belka to bring their military might upon them.

However, despite facing vastly superior numbers and equipment, the Rectan Military has held the Belkan army at bay for nearly two years. Playing a crucial part in this, is the Rectan Air Force and its top-class fighter pilots.

However, with supplies beginning to run low, and the Belkan Luftwaffe embarking on a series of ruthless saturation attacks, it is only a matter of time until the tide of war starts to turn against Recta.


Chapter 1: Nightlights

October 2nd, 19832213hrs

Saanola Mountains , Northern Recta

The howling of the wind through the lonely mountain passes and ravines soon mixed with the ominous droning of the jet engines up above. At fifteen thousand feet, a dozen BM-335s buzzed across the clouded nightsky, in a spaced out formation. Captain Tauner of the lead bomber looked up from the dim GPS display on his control panel, and examined his subordinates. A flurry of snowflakes whipped around the cockpit of the Lindwurm, as he scanned the foggy sky. He could see the leader of the escort squadron, flying an F-4C, in front of him. The captain spoke into his mouthpiece, his Anfang accent echoing in his oxygen mask.

"We're ten miles out from target. Christophe, get ready to open the bomb bay. Max, be ready with that tail gun. Those Rectans can come out of the damned mountainside, it seems." 

"Yes sir."

He looked back over his shoulder. Most of the crew on the bomber were little more than boys, the navigator was only sixteen years of age. This was what they had, though. The Belkan Air Force had gravely underestimated the skill of the Rectan pilots in the opening stages of the war, and they had paid for this over-confidence with the lives of their best men. He spoke to the rest of the squadron. "All units, sound off."

"I see 'em. 12 Lindwurms with an escort of Phantoms," said the Rectan Viggen pilot. Ilmari Saresto's oxygen mask hung open, he didn't need it while flying right down on the deck. His JA-37 skimmed the bottom of the ravine, another mottled white and grey Viggen and four similarly painted J-35Js behind him. "Copy that, Sioux 1," his wingman, Jari Kinnunen, called back to him. "Apache Squad, do you have radar contacts?"

Far up above, twelve F-14As of the 122nd fighter squadron watched the skies below them, in tight formation. Their lead, Eero Huotari, spoke back. "We have them, Sioux flight. About 25 planes, bearing 095 at 350 knots. Ten miles out from Kara and closing."

"Roger," Saresto replied. "You take care of the Big Ugly Fuckers, we'll keep the fighters off of you."

"Copy that, Ilmari. Apache Squadron, ready Sparrows and prepare to dive. Now!"

"GERONIMO!" The pilots yelled, as they barreled down through the murky black in pairs. Down in the ravine, Sioux flight pitched their noses up. "Sioux 2, starting the clock." Saresto engaged his Sparrows and aimed at the lead escort fighter. It was hard to see in this soup, he had to rely on his radar. He heard the barber's shaver buzz in his headset and pushed the trigger. "Sioux 1, Fox 1, Fox 1!" Jari did the same. "Sioux 2, missiles away!" A pair of missiles dropped from the wings of both planes, to ignite and surge upward, four burning stars in the nightsky.

The pilot of the lead Phantom's blood froze as the missile alert beeped through the cockpit. He tugged back on the stick. One missile shot straight past him, however the other found its mark. The captain of the lead bomber watched in horror as the Sparrow punched into the belly of the F-4, before detonating and spreading burning pieces of steel and black smoke across the sky. Jari's missiles streaked into a trailing bomber. One of them slammed straight into the midsection, snapping the ugly machine in two. The broken halves fell down to earth, trailing flames. "Regen 3 is down, no chutes!" "Where the Hell did those missiles come from!?"

The airwaves filled with panicked distress calls as Tauner saw several blips on his radar screen. "Bogeys at six o'clock!" He yelled. The rear gunner frantically whipped the turret around, searching for the enemy. Another bomber exploded, the flying debris shredding a nearby escort. The canopy popped off as two ejection seats burst into the icy night air. "Where the Hell are they?!" the gunner yelled. He started squeezing the trigger, the 20mm autocannon sending glowing red tracers into the fog.

"Max!" Tauner yelled back at him. "Calm yourself man! You're drawing attention to us!" He grabbed the stick and started pulling to the left, trying to get out of the chaos. A Phantom flew past him, with some kind of delta winged fighter hot on his tail, he couldn't make out exactly what it was in the fog. A short burst of cannon fire thumped out of the Rectan fighter's cannon, hitting the Phantom's engines and causing a small explosion. "This is Tiger 7, we're in a flat spin....The fucking canopy won't blow, we're going down..... Gahh!!" 

"Sioux 1, scratch 2." Ilmari called out as he watched the Belkan crash into a mountain. The bombing party were dropping like flies, like small meteors crashing to earth. A J-35 flew across his sights, chasing another F-4. He flew into the line of sight of the gunner of the lead bomber. He fired two Sidewinders at his victim, vanishing it in a ball of flame. However, the gunner opened up, deadly rounds shattering against the Draken's fuselage. Ilmari turned, firing his own pair of Sidewinders at the bomber. One drove itself straight into the Lindwurm's tail section. Losing its tail, it glided, nose-up into the mountainside, creating a spectacular explosion. A trail of parachutes fluttered above it. Ilmari glanced back at the Draken. It was trailing smoke. "This is Dakota 3, my plane's been shredded, I'm buggin' out. Thanks for the save, Sioux 1."

Tauner looked around himself in horror. The screaming winds stung his face, as if hundreds of razor blades were flying around him. The wind blended with the roar of explosions and the screech of jet engines. He tried to steer his  chute away from the wreckage of his bomber. He aimed for a flat plateau on the hillsides to land. A Rectan Tomcat, however,decided to add insult to injury and zipped past the falling chutes of him and his crew. The fierce current of wind blew him far off course. Instead of the plateau, he was now drifting towards a rocky outcrop. 'This is going to fucking hurt.'

Jari formed up on Ilmari's wing. They rolled around, admiring their handiwork. The burning wreckage of bombers and escorts illuminated the barren landscape below, like little candles. "This is Sioux 2, stopping the clock." Jari announced. "Aaaand the result is... two minutes and fifty-seven seconds, just eight seconds from our previous best."

"All in a day's work, guys." Huotari chimed in. "Let's RTB for some soup and a hot whiskey." The airwaves filled with cheers.

All Ilmari could manage however, was a single, frustrated sigh. For him, each successful sortie and each time he came back alive meant more waiting.

Waiting for someone to end it all...

...and finally kill him.

Chapter 2: Tunnel City

Mt. Calle, Recta, 2246hrs

The nuggets stepped out of the UH-1 Huey and into the freezing night air. They moved, hunched over from the cold and their heavy kit bags, toward the main building of Calle Air Force Base.

"Welcome to Tunnel City kids, good luck out there," the Huey pilot yelled out to them, over the noise of the chopper's rotors and the howling mountain winds, before dusting off and flying back south. It had been an apprehensive hour-long journey from the academy in the south of the country to the air force's primary frontline base.

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