“It took us three thousand years to find an intelligent species among the stars and only three months to pick a fight with them.”
After the United Nations of Terra (UNT) Fleet Frigate Nelson reported an encounter with an alien spaceship, she disappeared without a trace. An alien race called the Maltaani have made their presence known by landing a mass of troops on Balfan-48, a desert planet located far too close to Terra Earth for comfort. Tensions are rising and tempers are growing short.
The UNT responds by deploying ISMC’s Ninth Division aboard the flagship Atlas to the scene to investigate the Maltaani aggression. Blinded and deafened by enemy jamming, Ninth Division drops on Balfan-48 to counter the alien provocation.
When Ninth Division is decimated by a sneak attack, it’s up to Second Lieutenant Fortis to lead the surviving Space Marines in a fight for their lives. Trapped in a shrinking perimeter, cut off from Fleet support, and short of everything except the enemy, the Space Marines fight the only way they know how: like hell.
After Fortis samples a batch of DINLI brewed from lima bean rations, the radio-telephone operators ask him what message to send to Atlas in case the jamming ends. His response becomes a legend in the ISMC.
“Tell them to send fresh fruit and ammo.”