“Echo Six in position command, moving in to extract the artifact from the Tal'darim.”
“Roger Echo Six, keep us informed. Remember, the high templar holds the artifact and he is somewhere within the temple. Be quick about it, our scanners are detecting several faction closing in on this area.”
“It'll be done sir.” The ghost closed his communicator looked for a way in. He saw it, a small hanging jutting across. Jumping down from the cliff, he could easily sprint and reach the Temple's entrance in a short amount of time.
Echo Six made his way to the cliff. There was a dragoon and a sentry loitering around but he slipped past them undetected. Echo six quickly sprinted across the Tal'darim base and stopped only to let a zealot go by.
Within moments, he found himself on the temple's steps and made his way up. Once there, he kneeled behind an ornate pillar and he took great care to avoid gaining the attention of two particularly fierce looking guards at the entrance. He paused. How to get inside without alerting the guard's attention? There was no way in but to barge through. It would expose him immediately but there was no other way.
Yet luck was on his side. No sooner than he made the decision to silently snipe off both guards, the temple's doors opened, revealing his target. Wearing a light, regal, flowing rode patterned with purple cross sections, the high templar stepped out. Zooming in on the high templar's face, Echo Six couldn't help but wonder how old this templar was. He eyes were low and wrinkles appeared on his face. Yet this templar's eyes were commanding and fiery, a far cry from his appearance. A sparkle caught Echo Six's eyes. Around his neck, was a smooth, spherical, reddish crystal dotted with black specks.
The ghost opened his communicator to headquarters and readied his sniper rifle to take the shot. “Command, objective is in my sight. Beginning to retrieve artifact.”
“Copy that Echo Six. Head to the rendezvous point as marked in your map. HQ out.”
Echo Six briefly paused. To snipe or to EMP? If he sniped first, the high templar could survive and immediately discern his location and feedback the area around him, almost killing him instantaneously. Better to play it safe; it would only take another squeeze of his finger. Echo six fired off his EMP round at the high templar and the last. Immediately, a massive amaranthine shockwave erupted forth from the high templar, knocking Echo Six off his feet and sending him into darkness.
The ghost opened his eyes and blinked several times. His visor was cracked; the display simply flashed the message “ERROR SYSTEM RECONFIGURING” over and over again at the bottom of the screen. Echo Six placed his right hand on the ground and languidly pushed himself upright into a sitting position.
The ghost took several deep breaths and with some effort, raised himself up with the support of the wall behind him and checked his surroundings. It was quiet, far too quiet for the ghost's liking. Though he was a master of subtlety and was no stranger to silence, this silence was suffocating. It was strange. Where were the Protoss?
The Protoss! The mission was still in operation! Echo Six grimaced as he bent over to grab his C-10 Canister rifle. Where were the Protoss? He pressed a button on his wrist to activate his cloaking device. Nothing happened. He pressed it once more, harder. Still nothing.
The device must have been compromised during the blast, in addition to the head's up display on his helmet. The ghost squeezed the handle of his rifle. He had to be careful, much more careful moving around hostile territory.
At least this ocular implant still works.
Echo Six moved back to his previous position and peered out from his hiding spot. The temple was empty. There was no trace of the high templar, the guards, or even any of the other Protoss. They were gone, vanished into thin air.
He checked his timer. Several hours had passed since he was knocked out. What had happened in between? All he remembered was that purple blast before everything went dark. It would be best to call in command to see if they knew something he didn't.
“Echo Six to HQ! Echo Six to HQ! Please respond!”
There was only static on the other end. Echo Six looked incredulously at his transponder. This was unlike command to be out of radio contact.
“Echo Six on all frequencies, please respond if you there are others!”
There was no response. Echo Six checked all possible frequencies. The Dominion network was empty and silent. Something drastic had happened to the others. The ghost paused and considered his options. He holstered his rifle on his back. He had one other objective that was given to him; heading to the rendezvous point. Seeing no other choice in the matter, Echo Six trekked to the direction of the rendezvous point.