He blinked against the wind hard pressed against his face, a moment of confusion and bewilderment gave way to a sudden realization.
He was quite simply, not where he should be.
White light and cloud filled his vision, the sky that was dotted through them was marked by a gray murk that stretched over an equally gray horizon. The sky was dull and mind fumblingly vast - potted with distant black explosions of smoke and fire. The clouds obscured most of the ground below, what little he could see was a patchwork of cement gray, glittering silver and white steel and distant orange fire.
A voice warked in his ear, the harsh tones of a radio channel but his mind missed the words as he looked down to his hands. Scythian combat Armour, more form fitting than what he was used to - and well worn in through the rigors of combat, some kind of mobile holographic console built into the wrist guards projected a keyboard and map display at him instinctively as he looked towards them, and then he looked down further again. The weapon in his hands was a model he didn't recognize, a multi barreled laser weapon, larger than the laser carbines he was used to but smaller than a heavy weapon - it was rugged and heavy, and utterly unknown to him.
The words "Assault Laser Rifle" filled his mind, he didn't know how he knew this, but he somehow accepted the fact that this was his weapon.
He looked left and then right, he was surrounded by fellow Scythian troopers on each side, in equally heavy Armour and carrying the same weaponry - somewhere between the marines he knew and SIBAS suits, integrated power supplies, shoulder based aiming systems and various other combat items built into form fitting holsters and mag grips on the legs and hips.
He was on a dropship of some kind, slower and more heavily armed than a carnivore class dropship - it had no less than three underslung weapon emplacements firing full blast from the underside of the craft, he had no doubt the other three where also firing at full blast from the other.
Another fact he should not have known, but he somehow accepted without question - as if he had somehow always known this fact.
The clouds beneath started to clear as he saw the vast city beneath. Shells of steel and concrete stretched in every direction in vast grid patterns, equally spaced to fill every space at every level - roads and platforms interlinked at every direction, a vast complex that continued onwards and beyond the horizon, a city not build by a human intelligence.
But what else could be expected from the AN
Another fact his mind somehow picked from somewhere and then accepted without question.
Fire from the ground increased in its intensity - in the distant skies a wing of Pirana class assault ships began a strafing run on the advancing Scythian positions, between him and them? An Immortal carrier parked on the ground, crashed from the battle in orbit - the Immortals had dug in and had been strafing both sides with hit and run assaults, preventing either side from achieving victory, beyond those - the target - an enormous fusion generator compound that was generating power for the shield generators high above, the latch and key for the entire battle.
A voice twinged in his ear, something about "Preparing to activate grav packs" followed by the rallying cry of the men around him as his feet acted without his volition and he jumped into the sky - arms stretched around him into the blustering winds of the horizon.