Battlefield Stories...Damavand

A short story based within the intense battle for the infamous Damavand Peak of Iran

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3. Chapter Three

But our mission was not over. We had further objectives to secure. With a rallying shout in my ear, the team advanced as one past the fences of the communications tower. Further down the mountainside lay our next target, the enemy helicopter base. Past the helipad at the far end of the base was a sheer 500m drop. The enemy would fight hard to hold the helicopter base. As my squad rushed down the hill, I heard automatic fire behind me- there must be enemy infiltrators still within the communications tower, planning to attack our flank. I turned to face to the direction of fire, moving cautiously, my eyes searching the landscape. There he was, on the gangway of the tower, sprinting towards the railings, ready to jump down and attack our guys from the rear. I pulled up the 417 to my cheek, my eye finding the enemy assault trooper in the middle of my scope target as he landed on the hillside. Two quick shots to the chest and he was down. I breathed out, lowered the rifle, turned on the spot and made my way back to join my squad, hammering down the hill. Over the sound of my heavy steps on the rough ground and my heartbeat crashing inside my chest, I could hear the re-arrival of the Z11 enemy helicopter. The thud of rotors, the roar of the engine and the whine of the transmission screamed overhead as the pilot swept over our positions at low-level, opening fire with the heavy machine guns. I was only 100m from the perimeter of the base, but the Z11 was right in front of me, blocking my path, hovering. I raised my 417 and fired a few rounds at the chopper. It veered to the right as one bullet went through the glass canopy of the cockpit- I had hit the pilot. He fired at me as I ducked into cover behind some larger rocks. Bullets flew through the air all around me, but he was trying to shoot me from an impossible angle. As long as I stayed where I was, he couldn’t hit me. The air whistled and zipped with hot lead and the Z11 continued to fire as it flew overhead, ready to turn and make another pass. I had to relocate before the chopper saw and I also needed to get closer to the objectives. As I turned to my left to run up the hill, an enemy support soldier ran through the clearing and opened fire at my squad with his heavy machine gun. He was no more than 15m away from me so I reached for the .44 magnum, took snap aim and squeezed off 4 quick shots. As the gun bucked in my hands, the enemy soldier fell forward hard to the ground, and tumbled down the hillside. I had saved my squad from the ambush. I made my move to the left, up and over a rocky outcrop. The Z11 swung back into view, right in front of me and less than 30m away. I pulled up the rifle, and tugged at the trigger quickly, just as the helicopter started to fire. The recoil from my weapon pushed my shots off target, and the helicopter continued to fire- a sharp stab of pain told me I had been hit. I lowered the rifle from my shoulder- the chopper was too close to see clearly in the scope. From my hip, I loosed off another couple of rounds. As if in slow motion, the windscreen smashed, and blood splattered the shattered glass. The helicopter dropped suddenly to the left, exploding into a ball of flame on the high rocks. I had hit the pilot with a clean headshot. 

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