- The Scorpion missile detonated.
- Pressure slammed though his body. The Master Chief flew six meters, spinning end over end, and landed flat on his back.
- He blinked, and saw nothing but blackness. Was he dead? Had he lost?
- The shield status bar in his heads-up display pulsed weakly. It was completely drained—then it blinked red and slowly started to refill. Blood was spattered across the inside of his helmet and he tasted copper.
- He stood, his muscles screaming in protest.
- “Run!” Cortana said. “Before they come back for a look.”
- The Master Chief got up and ran. As he passed the spot where he had stood to face down the missile, he saw a two-meter-deep crater.
- He could feel his Achilles tendon tear, but he didn’t slow. He crossed the half-kilometer stretch in seventeen seconds flat and skidded to halt.
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