Lt. Abhay pulled out a reference “Sir, shooting a bright red flare during a sail…”
“Indicates distress and need of assistance.” The Admiral turned his face towards his first officer.
His look was grave. Like a father who received the news of his son’s death.
“This was our last destroyer. How many K-Class are still ready for sail? What is the army up to? Fix me on line with the centre.”
They had lost all their destroyers since last December at regular intervals. And this red flare today, put an end to their count. The Navy was crippled now. Lt. Abhay knew that he was alive only because he was first officer to the Admiral. Had he been a regular Naval Officer, he would have been firing that red flare.
Time wasn’t good. It was war, a different kind of war, with a different kind of species. They were trying to claim their authority over earth. These were closely associated with homo-sapiens but had nearly ten times their thinking power and surprisingly efficient mutation capabilities. Their enormous thinking power gave them extraordinary decision making capabilities and swiftness. They had taken to war against humans in last December. Since then the causality ratio had been traumatizing, 1: 11,49,876. UNO was dead. The joint military did not stand them for more than five days and went down in seas. That was when all nations pulled out from UN and decided to save their territories individually.
These were literati-sapiens (as called by homo-sapiens). They looked exactly similar to humans, with two arms, two legs, two eyes except for the fact that they had a swollen skull to accommodate their brain and their skin was sensitive to light and had taste buds. literati-sapiens had an exoskeleton structure, only .50 caliber sniper bullets could pierce them and yet it never killed them. Their essential organs were protected by a second layer of skeleton structure. We know it because military could manage to get two dead specimens of their type. Average weight was estimated to be 180 kilos and their physique was scaring. They had an average height of 7 feet. This species had striking similarities between each of the specimens. Their identification codes were sketched on each sample as simply looking at them could not help to distinguish between them. Moreover they did not have male or female sex. This meant they reproduced by cloning the daughter cells from a parent. Something like tissue culture. So each parent could actually breed to give a thousand more. They had incredible learning speed. Back in February when they got over the USS Arleigh Burke in midst of its sail, It took them an hour to reach the shore and it took US Navy next eight hours to evacuate the port of Virginia. They were lethal. They already had taken over half the world – most of the west and now most of Asia was under their control. Within their short activity period of six months, they knew 32 international languages, fluently and it took them seconds before they could decipher military communication signals. All nuclear power plants were taken over by them and most of the dams built were destroyed. The thermal stations weren’t a problem; they could shut them any day, if needed. They powered their own equipments with them. The gulf was under their control and oil production was down. ‘Still-independent countries’ were trying their best to produce enough energy for their military. Some countries had even taken to mass cycle-powered generators to charge submarine batteries. With no fuel, most of Indian warships were floating ducks. Russia had withdrawn all its naval assistance and now there were no nuclear powered vessels to guard the Indian coast. Global population was 2,654,557,800. Yes, the time wasn’t good indeed.
“Sir, the rail track on this Bridge has been checked and your train will be arriving in a few minutes. The centre has issued orders to relocate you and the three Vice Admirals to New Delhi. This train has been specially built for military and can withstand up to 1500 kg/cm2 of pressure which gives it ability to stay unaffected from mid-range rockets and grenades. However, if the train derails then you are advised to lock yourself in this chamber in carriage no.3 from the direction of motion”, said Abhay pointing at a shaded block on the blue print. The naval chief pushed the instructions away from himself, “That’s fine Lieutenant. I’ll go through it later.”
The train shuffled in and stopped right in middle of Howrah Bridge. It was in 1971 when a train ever ran on these tracks last time. The service was closed due to heavy traffic on Howrah Bridge. It’s so ironic that today there was not a single fellow on the Bridge. It was captured by the Navy and used as a depot. Losing that bridge would mean giving access of all Indian rivers to the enemy. Indian Navy just couldn’t afford loosing this bridge. Probably this was the reason Admiral himself had his shelter on the Bridge.
“Sir, and you are to transfer the charge to other senior officials at Kolkata. Your preferences maybe Rear Admiral Kaushav, Rear Admiral Sanjay Yadav, Rear Admiral Ramakant Swamy or Commodore SK Singh. I have got no instructions to accompany you to New Delhi so I will be staying here with the fleet.”
“What’s the news from Mumbai and Visakhapatnam?”
“Sir Mumbai can withstand the attacks for a couple of more days. They are deficient to resist Admiral Kuznetsov and Admiral Ushakov which were gained over by ‘them’ 12 days ago. There has been no evidence of ‘their’ capability to fly Sukhois yet. But they do have 8 Sukhois onboard which is a great threat. Cochin has been taken over yesterday 5pm IST and orders of mass evacuation have been issued. There is no data indicating the loss/causalities yet. However, safeguarding civilians remains our first priority. The Visakhapatnam port has been jammed. They sunk two of our submarines at the mouth of passage which have made it hazardous for our large ships to sails over. There is no clearance for heavy vessels to move out of the port but lighter C-Class vessels are trying their best to resist the attack while the debris is cleared.”
The admiral laid his hand on Abhay’s shoulder and got into the coach. He knew what that touch mean. Dr. Hasan Ali, scientific advisor to Prime Minister had called it a ‘natural event which was ought to happen someday’. Humans had claimed this world because of their intelligence, and now someone else is doing the same.
The Admiral got into the coach and the train began to move. Lieutenant Abhay stood there as he looked the train shuffle by. Getting the Admiral out of Kolkata meant India knew it was going to lose Kolkata soon. Abhay stood there as the train went away. He kept looking at the yellow cross (X) mark on the last coach which flashed blue light….
Hell!!!! Wait a minute! Trains flash a red light not blue! Damn!!!
I woke myself from sleep and got up in shock. I was in my bed.
“F*ck! What was that! Probably I need some water."
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