History Island. The remnant of ages past gathered into one place. Fitting, that it should be called so, in more ways than just the obvious. Yes, the island was an archive of the ages of Iwaku past. Yes. the island also held many secrets from the past as well. But now, the island served as the last haven for the survivors of Iwaku, the place where anyone could get a semblance of peace.
And yet, there was no peace to be found. The camp bustled with movement from dawn till dusk, like an anthill, and smoldered from dusk till dawn, like the last glowing embers of a dying flame. It was in these cramped quarters that the refugees stayed, never leaving with the exception of the rare expedition to check on the progress of the doom of the rest of Iwaku.
There was no peace to be found here, either.
The survivors holed up within the ruins, the only place where they could brace their meager defense with a sizeable blockade. But until the rest of Iwaku either recovered from the destruction of died from the monsters that prowled it, the refugees could only lay in wait, hoping that their meager rations would last them. Food was already short and the ships, though able to grow crops inside of them for food, couldn't produce enough to meet demand. More important was medicine: if someone became sick with a deadly communicable disease, it would only be a matter of time before the entire camp caught it, particularly within such cramped quarters.
But these survivors kept hoping. Hoping for a sign so they could return to Iwaku. They held onto it, for that was all they had.
The wastelands near the camp
Sand whipped through the barren terrain as the wind picked up the grains and hurled them at the few men who attempted to trudge across the wasteland. A scouting party from the group of survivors back at the ruins, they searched for information on the state of mainland Iwaku, survivors, and, most importantly, food. However, they were met with opposition the moment they had set out; one of their number had, stupidly, run ahead, volunteering to scout, when he had twisted his ankle. He'd been sent back to the camp and replaced with another, but whether it was an omen or not, it had dampened the already dark spirits of the scouts. Now, the land itself seemed against them, trying its best to dissuade them from moving forward. But they marched on anyways. They were soldiers, Space Marines to be exact, and they didn't give up. They didn't give in. They persisted where others failed and got the job done where others couldn't or wouldn't.
But Lady Luck had deserted these men in the middle of this desert.
The front most marine snapped his clenched fist up, indicating for the group to stop. Something felt off. He didn't know what, but something wasn't right. He scanned the terrain, looking for an indication of what he had seen. But what was off wasn't what he could see. He suddenly noticed that it was what he felt. Small tremors rippled lightly through the sand and he looked down to see the sand bulging slightly. "MOOOOVE!", he screamed, and leaped aside just as the land below him ripped apart, throwing sand everywhere. He landed with a thud and quickly flipped over onto his back. He steeled himself when he saw the beast.
A giant mutant at least ten feet tall crashed down with a muffled thud, the sand cushioning his fall. It was hairy in the wrong places and metal was grafted onto it as if armor had been fused to it under high heat. Which was exactly what had happened. This thing used to be human once, an ISAF renegade that had been near enough to a radioactive explosion to survive the blast, but had become mutated as a result. Its skin was leathery; the soldier could hear that from the rough, scratching sounds the thing made whenever it moved, and it had grown to nine feet in height, its mass growing respectively. From the way it shook the sand out of its ears, it had been waiting for someone, something to come along so it could feast.
"KILL IT!" the squad leader roared and all the soldiers opened fire. A few of the bullets from the marines' full size automatic rifles penetrated the skin, but most of them merely bounced off harmlessly, the skin so tough that the mutant only noticed as one would notice a squirrel throwing acorns. The mutant seemed more confused by the racket the soldiers were making, yelling as their automatic weapons blasted till finally, their first magazines had been spent.
The mutant breathed in deep, then unleashed a thunderous roar, knocking one of the marines over at the sheer volume of air expended from the behemoth lungs.
With that, the giant lumbered forward and swatted at the marines, sending one flying and another one rolling out of the way. One yelled for the others to back away, then charged, grenade in hand, pin laying discarded feet away. He ducked under a large fist, then a stubby leg, and dove underneath the mutant's legs. The mutant tried to swerve around, but the marine had already inserted the grenade into the monster's rear pocket, which it had conveniently forgotten it had, and booked it. The grenade went off seconds later, sending shrapnel deep into the behemoth's rear, but otherwise dealing little damage. It turned, growling and obviously very annoyed at what had just happened. It took a threatening step forward when it suddenly shuddered.
A speeding, sharp, white-ish object hurtled into the mutant ISAF renegade's throat, piercing and lodging itself in it. Another icicle followed, ramming into the mutant's skull and shattering, cooling the air. But the first icicle had dealt severe damage and though it had missed the spine, the behemoth staggered in pain and with lack of breath. A young girl with greyish skin and jet black hair ran between the shocked soldiers, cool air following in her wake, and leapt, grabbing the icicle in the monster's throat. Her tattoes, which ran the length of her body from her wrists up her arm and down to her ankles, began to glow a light blue as she hissed at the behemoth. It jerked upright, as if in extreme pain, then froze where it was. Checking the monster's pulse to confirm its death, she jumped down, landing lithely reminiscing of a cat, then walked over to the soldiers, who were already helping their unconscious comrade up. They weren't surprised, she noticed, probably because this wasn't the first time it had happened. She walked over to a discarded cloak and knapsack that had fallen a little ways away from the marines, donned the cloak and hefted the knapsack. The marines approached her warily, not knowing if she was friend or ally, supporting their injured comrade.
"I already know of your refugee camp. Take me there."
The marines escorted her back to camp to meet Grandmaster Banrae.