Marina’s Way: A Cyber-Novela [Chapter One]

2marina900Marina is exhausted but exhilarated. Her entrails are convulsing violently as she pumps hundreds of rounds into the hordes of CSA Minutemen coming at her from all sides. After two sleepless nights of hard battle, she can barely hold onto the trigger, which is a throttle gyrating wildly in her hands.

She is emptying magazines from eight different machine guns placed strategically on the exoskeleton of her BattleBot or “Bot.” Bots are oversized suits of armor, equipped with lasers, machine guns, rocket launchers, grenades, poison gas canisters and other weapons systems.

Bots are operated by specialized Bot Pilots working deep inside the steel behemoths, which weigh thousands of pounds and stand five stories high. BattleBots were secretly developed by the U.S. Army and were now widely used by armies around the world.

“Incoming,” squawks Marina’s radar. “Shit! Some pinche vendido traitor ratted us out,” Marina hisses into her headset as fighter jets roar overhead and the forest explodes all around her.

The Confederate States of America or CSA, as the new “white-only” country is commonly called, has scrambled jet fighters from air bases in Dallas to bomb Latino Special Forces positions hidden deep inside the Piney Woods in East Texas.

Marina squeezes the giant trigger even harder as the missile fires reveal the forest floor littered with the bodies of dead CSA Minutemen in front of her towering Bot.

“Woo Hoo, motherfuckers!” she yells. She is one of a small group of special forces trying to cross the CSA border at the Sabine River in East Texas. Their mission is to infiltrate deep into CSA territory to find and free Latinos held in secret work camps across the CSA. When the United States finally broke up in 2033, Latinos who had not left the Old South were captured as “illegals” and forced into labor camps. Along the way, Marina and her crew were to sabotage oil refineries in Louisiana and Air Force bases in Mississippi and whatever other “valuable targets” they could find.

Marina’s elation is short-lived. Even as she continues spraying bullets all around, the Minutemen just keep coming! The screen inside her Bot is going fuzzy and the picture keeps coming in and out. Suddenly, she’s terrified for her small band of brothers and sisters. They’ve been together, fighting the CSA for control of Texas for almost two years and right now, she can’t “feel” any of them around.

America broke up into several countries in the Great Schism of 2033. However, the major blow had been the Earthquake of 2020, which swallowed up San Francisco, Los Angeles and most of Southern California.

The earthquake caused a gigantic tsunami, which obliterated the old coastline and killed millions of people. The western coastline is now in Palm Springs. America, was already deeply divided racially and politically, was plunged into a deep economic depression which hastened its decline.

Within a few short years, the globe suffered a series of natural disasters, followed by outbreaks of disease and war that disrupted humanity’s status quo so totally that food, water, fuel and other commodities that had been abundant became more and more scarce. T

he world’s population was greatly reduced by the cataclysms and people reverted to the safety of their ethnic and cultural groups strengthening their “tribal” ties and forming more and more racially and ethno-centric political and military organizations.

In America, the old conservative coalitions became the Confederate Party and they pushed for rule by those of the “white race” in order to preserve their version of America.

The old Democratic Party coalitions broke up into hundreds of different ethno-centric factions and American politics became even more divided than ever before.

Power shifted to the states and the U.S. Congress became merely a ceremonial body of “lawmakers” appointed by local legislatures, which held authority in their towns by controlling wealth and resources via private militias. This status quo continued as millions of people began to congregate in different parts of the country, according to their race. For years, people knew that a race war was coming. Helter Skelter became the rallying cry of all those who favored settling the racial issue through war.

By 2015, America’s population had become dominated by “minorities,” the largest groups being Latinos, blacks and Asians.

“People of color,” as they were known, began to be elected into positions of power. Meanwhile, the country’s white elite, which had always held power over government, business and most institutions, had aged and declined and found themselves having to share political power.

This was fine in some areas of the country and not so much in other areas. Across the South and in some midwestern states, white-controlled state legislatures began passing draconian voting laws and other hostile laws meant to keep “minorities” from power.

Given the ever-increasing hostility enacted against them, Latinos began leaving the south and other areas, migrating in west and southwest. When the CSA was established American Latinos founded Hispania, a Latino Republic in the states of California, Oregon, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico and parts of Texas. The CSA also laid claim to Texas and war ensued between the two.

Marina is startled by another round of fire from the jets. This time she hears a loud explosion to the East and sees the wreckage of a Latino Bot flying over the pine trees. “Nooooo,” screams Marina.

She instinctively knows that Chato, one of her comrades, has been hit. “Chato, damage report,” Marina yells into her headset as tears roll down her face. She feels responsible for her small group of grunts and right now she’s freaking out because she thinks they’re all about to die.

Suddenly, Marina’s screen lights up with Chato’s smiling face. Marina wells up with tears and is about to speak when image grows fuzzy, replaced by a Latino commander.

“This is Latino Military Headquarters in San Antonio. Abort Border Ops.” The transmission is breaking up: “…..treat!” says the voice. “Leave your…..sitions!” The screen goes silent. Marina shakes her head and her eyes grow wide as if in a trance. She sends a telepathic message to her comrades: “Go to Plan B. See you on the other side. Confirm.” Plan B means they’re all on their own now.