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“Nexus of Chaos”


Nexus of Chaos

Outstanding book written by two of my most favorite authors. Gunnery Sergeant (GySgt) Reverent Pelletier is back along with Gunnery Sergeant Tomiko Reiser. If that combination does get your mind to whirling then nothing will. When those to around, the action is bound to be happening which means bullets will be flying and aliens enemies will be dying!

Right now though, they’re in a kind of a lull in ops tempo getting the battalion back to strength and manned up. They had lost a lot of people in their last action and replacements were slowly coming in. GySgt Pelletier’s company or platoon wasn’t up to his high standards of training and he was out to fix that, but command had just thrown him a curve. He was now assigned to work with a company/platoon of Breel. These were tree like aliens that were good fighters, in Rev’s opinion based on having fought with them before. Still, they were a trifle arrogant and sometimes didn’t come across very well to other Marines. But, train with them they would and he hoped both would gain a lot from the experience.

As you should have noted, Tomiko is now the same rank as Rev. She’s the second platoon Gunnery Sergeant so she has to put up with the same stuff that Rev is doing now. Their training as a unit with the Breel is slowly coming along. The Breel seem to want to act on their own a little too much and don’t have a solid grasp of small unit tactics, but they can fight. And as Rev and Tomiko have experienced in the past, they don’t get to decide when they have to go back to war. The call has just came and they are going soon.

The Naxli are still the enemy and they have just invaded the home system. This means they are in the Solar System apparently heading for various planets before going directly to Earth. The battalion along with the Breel company are now on alert status for deployment. When that deployment will take place is the big question. As it turns out, the First Human Expeditionary Battalion and the Breel Dagger Company are made ready, but they don’t deploy any where. It seems the Naxli have their eye on Safe Harbor as a center of the humans military power. So, a Naxli invasion of Safe Harbor is happening now. Unfortunately, almost all the Marines and other troops usually on Safe Harbor have already deployed. Rev’s and Tomiko’s battalion is all that is left and that’s not nearly enough to defend an entire planet.

So, this is the first mission you’ll read about. The number of Naxli deploying to Safe Harbor is vastly larger than the two-thousand or so Marines left on the planet. The fighting is going to be very rough and mostly the battalion is going to try and stay alive until the deployed troops get the chance to come back if they ever happens. Rev has his own problems when he gets separated from his unit and has to defend a small position with a bunch of stragglers he found. Things get very tight with him and about ten or twelve of his men/women facing about thirty-thousand Naxli.

But, as usual, things move on. You next find that the humans and it’s alien allies have had enough of the Naxli attacks on the home system. While it was repelled, a lone scout had managed to find the Naxli’s home planet and now a super highly classified mission was set to take the war to the Naxli home system. Rev and Tomiko are going to be in the middle of everything exciting that happens on this mission. It doesn’t end in any way you would expect. The Sia, an alien floating gas bag, have been around observing almost every encounter between the humans and the Naxli, but they’ve never intervened nor have the ever communicated with anyone, friend or for, as far as the humans know.

Back home after the Naxli invasion, there’s a disturbing trend in the civilian population that we need to stop all this fighting and especially using altered and enhanced humans like Rev. Some are still afraid of any kind of genetic alterations to humans because of the genetic wars fought in the past. It seems a large group of humans in the past did a lot of genetic engineering on themselves and then considered them to be superior humans. A terrible war was fought between normal humans and the “Genesians”. The normal humans won, and that resulted in laws to forbid future genetic alterations of human-kind. While the IBHUs weren’t genetically modified like the Genesians, they did have modifications to their body that allowed the adaption of the weapon prosthesis. Since the IBHUs were proud of their ability to overcome what would have been a serious blow to their military careers, they took to wearing very visible weapon systems or even a very shiny metallic arm prosthesis when not fighting. In other words, they stood out.

This is going to cause some major, major problems for the future of all IBHUs or any kind of modified Marine or soldier. It seems kind of ridiculous that it goes to the extreme that it does in this book, but as usual a small, but very vocal minority, can cause a lot of smart people to make stupid decisions. And that’s what happens at the end of this book. I’m not sure where it’s going to lead, but it does open the story-line to a whole new world of potential stories. Oh, one more thing, even Tomiko isn’t beyond making stupid mistakes, but her and Reverent Pelletier are going to be together no matter what!

Yes, there is going to be a 13th book, “Exiled to Perdition”, already on my reading list. A 14th book, “Into the Void”, shows as available on/about 14 June 2023. I’ll be reading that one too.

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