Frontline 13: Mysterious beastie
Posted February 16th 2006
This is Radio WRKX broadcasting, with more from the amazing Halo. Never one to duck a challenge, nimble reporter Suzie Hoffenblatt has ventured way off the beaten track this evening, risking life and limb to investigate the haunting foghorn cries heard miles down below during her recent clifftop encounter with the enemy ship, Truth and Reconciliation. Yes, she's down there now in the dark, and with the skills of a big-game hunter, she's tracked down one of the beasties responsible. Flashlight in one hand, microphone in the other, just what is lurking out there in the gloom? Other-worldly creatures brought right to your doorstep, here on Radio WRKX. Take it away Suzie…
Suzie: So, Mr Beastie, welcome to the show.
Mr B: A pleasure Suzie.
Suzie: I don't think I've ever interviewed anything like you before. I hardly know how to describe you to our listeners.
Mr B: Actually I'd sooner you didn't describe me at all. We like to keep an air of mystery down here in the dark.
Suzie: A mysterious beastie! Hmmm… I can respect that. Very well then, we'll leave our listeners to their imaginations. So, do you do a lot of this mystery business then?
Mr B: Oh yes; me and the other guys, we're very shady. Hardly anyone ever sees us. We'll come out at night and do the occasional bit of howling.
Suzie: Yes, that's what I heard from way up on the cliff there. Sounded like a foghorn from hell. Scared the living bejezus out of me!
Mr B: Heh, we do our best.
Suzie: Would you care to give the listeners a demonstration?
Mr B: Delighted Suzie. Stand back now. You'd better hold onto that tree.
Suzie: Golly. Ok, ready.
Mr B: Here goes. HOOOOOOOOOHHHHHHHHH!
Suzie: Wow, that was a good one.
Mr B: Well, not my loudest, but it was ok. You can let go of that tree now; the ground's stopped shaking.
Suzie: I'm not sure my bones have though. And my ears are still ringing. Almost overloaded the microphone too! All in all, very impressive.
Mr B: It sure scatters the wildlife, I can tell you that. Not that the wildlife is going to bother us, but it's still fun.
Suzie: And pretty scary from up on that cliff, as I mentioned. Didn't know what was making that strange sound down below.
Mr B: That's very much the idea Suzie. Mysterious beastie strikes again!
Suzie: You certainly enjoy this stuff don't you!
Mr B: Well, there's not much to do down here quite frankly, so we need all the entertainment we can get. Mind you, it's been pretty entertaining these last few days, what with all the racket coming from up on that cliff.
Suzie: Ah yes, there's been a bit of a fracas going on.
Mr B: It certainly sounded like it. There I was lurking in the darkness minding my own business, when all of a sudden there's flashes and bangs up in the distance, and all sorts of odd things are falling out of the sky.
Suzie: Such as?
Mr B: Well for starters there was this weird little thing with what looked like a fin on its back. Came flying in out of the blue, arms waving, and then SPLAT! Blue goo all over the place.
Suzie: Aha, I believe that would be what they call a Grunt.
Mr B: Well, he wasn't doing much grunting once he hit the deck, I can tell you that.
Suzie: No, I imagine not.
Mr B: These Grunts do a lot of flying?
Suzie: Not usually no, but it becomes a good deal more widespread whenever there's a seven foot cyborg in the area. He makes sure of that.
Mr B: Intriguing. Anyway, then there was this wretched spindly looking thing with a beak and big googly eyes. Came shooting in with arms going around like windmills. I barely had time to introduce myself before he went splat too.
Suzie: A tragically short conversation. That would be a Jackal by the sound of it.
Mr B: Any relation to that Grunt fellow?
Suzie: Not that I know of, but they both enjoy going around shooting stuff.
Mr B: Ah, hence all the bang-bang-banging?
Suzie: I would've called it zap-zap-zapping myself. The bang-bang-banging was probably from the Marines.
Mr B: Marines? Could you describe them?
Suzie: A bit like me, only much much uglier.
Mr B: Gotcha. Yeah I think we had a few of those too. Wearing green?
Suzie: That'll be them yes. They're the guys those Grunts and Jackals from the Covenant were probably shooting at. Well, them and the cyborg.
Mr B: Dear me, it all sounds a bit heated. Bit of a disagreement is there?
Suzie: Just a little bit of a one. Apparently the Covenant wants to wipe us humans out you see, and that's the bit we're having a disagreement over.
Mr B: I can see the sticking point. Mind you, those Grunts and Jackals don't look so tough.
Suzie: No, but that's not the worst of it. Didn't you have any other visitors flying in?
Mr B: Now you mention it, yes. There was a real nasty looking fellow, maybe eight feet tall, with an ugly great head and lots of teeth. Made a hell of a racket wailing as he came down. But he eventually went splat like the rest of 'em.
Suzie: I'm picturing it now. That would be one of the fearsome enemy Elites I expect. Was he very angry?
Mr B: He did seem rather peeved yes.
Suzie: Mmm, definitely an Elite.
Mr B: I don't think I'd like to meet one of those on a dark night.
Suzie: Neither would our Marines, to be honest. Not on any sort of night in fact. They're big trouble for us, and they'll eat the Marines for breakfast. Perhaps literally, given the chance.
Mr B: He had the teeth for it alright. But he did come flying down though, so obviously not everything was going his way.
Suzie: Yes, but I expect that little trip was arranged by the seven foot cyborg I mentioned, same as for the other airborne nasties.
Mr B: Impressive. He sounds a fun sort of chappy this cyborg fellow.
Suzie: Oh yes, never a dull moment. Puts on quite a show; I've seen it myself! Think of him as a sort of roving entertainments officer.
Mr B: I surely will. Sounds great; can you get me tickets?
Suzie: It's not really that type of show I'm afraid; you can never be quite sure where he's going to pop up next.
Mr B: Ah, he likes to spring a surprise then.
Suzie: Very much so yes, and it sounds like you've been seeing quite a few of the lucky recipients.
Mr B: Heh, sure have! Talking of which, that's not all the visitors we got. There was also a big blue spiky thing that came down. Didn't see that one come in myself but apparently it gave one of the guys quite a shock. WHAM! Landed right next to him and splattered him in orange goo.
Suzie: Ooh, nasty. That must have been a Hunter, another of these Covenant fellows. They can be quite juicy I hear, once you get past the armour. So you see, we humans have quite a lot on our plate at the moment.
Mr B: It sounds like it. You do much fighting yourself?
Suzie: Oh no, I'm just a reporter, I try to be impartial, even when it comes to the Covenant. I just go about interviewing everybody and getting the story out on the airwaves. It's the Marines that do most of our fighting. Come to think of it that's probably our main problem from what I've seen, but let's not go into that. Actually, I did recently kill one of those nasty Elites up there, but it was a complete accident. I just got a bit over-enthusiastic shooting pink light from a giant three-legged gun thingy they let me have a go on.
Mr B: Quite understandable I'm sure. And hey I think I've seen that pink stuff flying across the sky. Really nice.
Suzie: Oh yes, it's a lovely shade. You can see how a girl could get carried away sitting at the trigger.
Mr B: Absolutely. So, just the one Elite then?
Suzie: Well, I did also do a spot of Jackal-whacking with my microphone once. But he shot at me first!
Mr B: Huh, the beak-nosed freak!
Suzie: That's what I said! You know Mr Beastie, I think I like you.
Mr B: Aw shucks. Likewise I'm sure. In fact, if any more of those Covenant fellows come down, I'll be sure and give them a good stomping for you if I get the chance.
Suzie: Well, that's very kind of you and I'm sure the Marines would be delighted. Still, it's an awfully long way down so I expect most of the Covenant you see will be going splat at the first opportunity.
Mr B: Probably when they hit the ground I suppose.
Suzie: That would be my own guess yes.
Mr B: Well I'll give them a stomping anyway. It's the thought that counts.
Suzie: It definitely is.
Mr B: Anyway, you never know. After all, you managed to get down without going splat. In fact I was kind of wondering how you did that.
Suzie: Well it wasn't easy!
Mr B: Quite apart from the matter of getting back up again.
Suzie: Hmmm… let's just say we reporters like to have a bit of mystery too.
Mr B: Really? Terrific. Just wait till I tell the guys about this.
Suzie: And talking of getting back up, I think I'd better get started and leave you to carry on with your nightly business.
Mr B: It's been a pleasure Suzie. Come back and visit us again sometime huh?
Suzie: I'll be sure to try, if the Covenant doesn't kill us all first. But I think the cyborg's taking care of them quite nicely at the moment. If you hear any more explosions you'll probably know who it is.
Mr B: You think we'll be safe down here?
Suzie: Oh yes, I'm sure you've got nothing to worry about. He does like a bit of carnage and mayhem, but it's not as if he's going to blow up the entire ring!
Mr B: Heh, that would be a bit annoying for me and my buddies!
Suzie: Quite so. But no I'm sure you'll all be lurking down here howling in the gloom for many years to come. Anyway, so long for now, and thank-you Mr Beastie.
Mr B: HOOOOOOOOOHHHHHHHHH!
Suzie: Hey, I wasn't holding onto the tree that time!
Mr B: Oopsie!
Note: For advice on hearing this beastie and others, see Beastie sounds.