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A pod zoomed past Rex and he yanked back the stick to avoid being turned into mush. Gung-ho Lee’s pod slashed past him in a stream of red hot steel as he skimmed directly down towards the planet. One day he was going to get himself killed pulling a stunt like that.

The level of artillery increased for a few seconds as they arced through the worst of it. Red hot flames laced the world in agonizing bloody reds and oranges. Pods were torn from their positions in space and ripped apart as his men died in the descent.

Rex pushed for an even sharper angle into the planet as red lights flashed on multiple warning screens around him. The ship wouldn’t take much more of this, but he had no choice. The only other option was becoming mince meat in the artillery’s field of fire.

CRITICAL TEMPERATURE REACHED. 400 DEGREES CELSIUS.

Hold on, you piece of space junk,” Rex murmured reducing his descent angle slightly, trying to mitigate some of the heat.

The display indicated he had 20 further degrees before the pod disintegrated. His suit was already flashing warnings at him and the atmosphere in the suit was already hot enough to make his body feel like the metal was burning him.

They slipped through the atmosphere and slammed hard into the ground, cutting through the lush forest as they went. Jupiter was one of the only remaining ‘beautiful’ planets in the solar system and the resources that they were fighting for were significant enough to make for big payouts for all of the soldiers involved in the conflict if they won. Those trees that they had broken on their insertion were probably worth a fair bit. Rex didn’t regret it though. He was here for the challenge, not the payday.

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