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A Rookie

The sound of gunfire burns my ears. The AK47 shots ring down my eardrums into my brain. Exploding bombs rattle the battlefield. Bodies, blood, and legacies tossed around the battle field like a ball at a baseball game. My mission must continue. The sounds of tank and chopper fire engulf my mind. I need to complete the mission. Please God, no more madness. This puny cave is only going to protect me for so long. The army issues a camo uniform for a reason. It’s not what your country can do for you; it’s what you can do for your country…right?

The evening before… I stand tensely in my squadron with my hand on my steaming, sweaty brow. The salute respects my commander. He tells us to relax, and my shoulders drop with a sigh of relief. Then the captain gives us our mission. I almost pass out onto the rocky, unforgiving ground when our mission is stated. Stars shine brightly in my head. My stomach churns. I can’t believe they gave us this mission. A group of privates, rookies, are supposed to handle this? The grueling war loomed over twelve years. Other soldiers fought in this wasteland for far too long. This is ridiculous. Other men devote their lives to kill their leader. Veterans deserve the honor to kill him. My anger rises, and it alomst overcomes me. I calm myself down, and realize our superior’s lives are the priority. Fools represent this country. I believe in this flag on my right shoulder. This is America; people like me keep the gears of this country turning. Accepting the mission, I return to my tent to prepare.

The wind races by my face as the chopper zips through the cool darkness of the overcast sky. My eyes start to blur and water. I blink a few times, washing out my tears and fears. I’m ready for action. Checkpoint two resides about twelve thousand feet below. Three, two, one and I’m floating through the air. The sensation wonders me as the air cradles my body. I wouldn’t trade the rushing winds around me for anything. I tug the cord of the chute. Then a noise punches me in the face. One of my boys collides with the ground and then the ground spanked him back. We were all oblivious to the mine field. The soldier took the full force of twenty plus mines. We can’t find any piece left to bury. He had no chance.
Grounded, I rip off my parachute. Gripping the handle of my M16, I realize were not alone. The ground slaps my face, and the fresh dirt of the field slides up my nostrils and down my throat. I suppose it’s better than a bullet between my eyes. The sounds of the sniper’s bullets whizzing by my ears cause me to radiate fear. I can hear the sounds of my friends’ screams as the sniper’s bullets tear into their flesh, and lodge themselves into their hearts. Reading my M16, I peer through the scope. All I see is blackness and wait; there they are. Three enemy snipers, taking aim at my brothers, the only people I have in this world. Pulling the trigger and feeling no remorse, I drill each round deep into their skulls. Sniper bodies litter the ground. Two more dirty boys fall as we control the area. We lost four men; it might as well have been my whole family.
Silently but steadily us soldiers crawl through the thick, out of control brush of the forest. Only twenty more feet and our cover ends. They already ambushed us twice. If they massacred us a third time; we would still be lucky. Reloading my gun with a few clicks, I feel ready to kill. Seeing the enemy for the first time tantalized me. I lost it, my dinner. Tanks, gunners, and soldiers silhouette along the horizon. Their shiny new guns, freshly cleaned uniforms, and state of the art equipment make me rethink my values. There is no way we can possibly win. It reminds me of the Holocaust, no chance. Only twenty of us stand left to fight. They have twenty men… plus four hundred. My squad makes the ultimate decision.
I was chosen. Out of everyone, they picked me to go on. Unanimously, all nineteen, voted me to carry out the mission. Meaning, nineteen families, forty plus kids, and nineteen wives are going to lose the love of their existence. I can’t comprehend the courage and bravery that unlocked from the nineteen individuals. The men sprint out into the battlefield and try their best. They long to be the three hundred Spartans who gave their all. The only difference being my squad is all rookies with a few weapons. Watching in grief, ten of my best friends drop before they can even power a shot off. The scene horrifies me.
I start to make my way around the battlefield; where my squad, my friends, my brothers are giving up their lives for a country that put them into this situation in the first place. Knowing they had one chance that they might succeed, me. I conclude the tour around the field as my last brother falls. My senses react, but it is too late. Blinded, the purest white light illuminates the world around me. I can feel the chopper whipping the cold night air down at me. Then the purr of the chopper’s gunner turns into roar. Bullets scatter around me. I’m hit, twice. I scramble to reach the spots of my injuries. The bullets just grazed, thank you God. Gathering all the power possible, I fidget to the nearest source of cover. Enemies close around me. Quitting is not an option. I find a cave and crawl into it. Their army loses sight of me. Taking no pity, they continue to shoot and bomb anything that stands. The darkness of the cave engulfs me and my wounds. I fall unconscious to the sound of AK fire and the shrill of helicopters flying across the twilight.
The sound of gunfire burns my ears. The AK47 shots ring down my eardrums into my brain. Exploding bombs rattle the battlefield. Bodies, blood, and legacies tossed around the battle field like a ball at a baseball game. My mission must continue. The sounds of tank and chopper fire engulf my mind. I need to complete the mission. Please God, no more madness. This puny cave is only going to protect me for so long. The army issues a camo uniform for a reason. It’s not what your country can do for you; it’s what you can do for your country…right?
I crawl out of the darkness of the cave. Taking out my rusty compass, I find my coordinates. It’s my lucky day. My destination lingers near. Starting the treacherous trek up the cliff side, I go prone as near the top. The rocks rip into my stomach. I know they will leave scars. It’s not like I have enough already. Above the cliff, the enemy camp shows itself. It appears as if I caught them at the right time. Only ten soldiers stand guard, fully loaded, in front of a tent. His tent. I feel a sense of pride well up inside my heart. It swells into my throat and then to my eyes. Tears flow down my face. Then I pull the pin from my grenade. Three, two, one and I toss the grenade perfectly. The trajectory and precision is unmatched. The explosion is deafening. I feel no heavy signs of remorse as I destroy all of my targets. Nothing left, but a few arms and legs. Perfect.
The feeling you get when you’re about to complete a mission is lovely. He knows were coming for him and him alone. He doesn’t dare come out of his tent, yet. Letting another tear slip, I realize that I’m going to do it for my country, my men, and myself. I get up off my belly and strut confidently over to the tent. The tent is purple, with gold lacing. The minor castle looks majestic compared to the ugly tan boulders that company it. Inside, he waits. He knows I’m making my way towards him. The man understands dying is his only option. That didn’t stop him from raging war for ten years and ruining over two hundred and fifty thousand lives, not counting their loved ones. The tent door has found me. I take a look around as the sun creeps up over the horizon. I see the flag from our camp. The blood red and royal blue, the pure white and those fifty stars that hold our country together; America returns today.
Calling out, I tell him to come face me. I pace myself back about five yards. Then I wait for him to appear. I know he will. The tent door starts to quiver. Then the purple silk of the tent is thrown into the brilliant red sunrise as he emerges. He holds no weapons. He has no need. This man caused enough damage for the world, two times over.
Walking over, he kneels down in front of me. He throws his hat onto the dusty ground. The wind blows it over the cliff. He looks pathetic. The man hasn’t showered in days, weeks. I stare into the cold dark eyes of the man who has destroyed thousands of lives and weakened a country’s morale and will to live. I pull my out my brand new, never before used, pistol. It waited for an important occasion. This situation suits the qualification. I look into the chamber and locate six shiny pieces of brass glimmering up at me. They have a look of excitement on their faces. Each bullet waits to bust his cranium. Lowering the gun a bit and to the right, I find my target spot. I ready the gun and find my spot again. I smile, wider than I ever have in my entire life. The smile is bigger than at my wedding, the birth of my first child, and the day I became a United States’ soldier. I refound new respect for America and their army. They hadn’t put us in this situation to fail miserably. They wanted to show us what Americans were made of. I tell him one last thing, “Don’t worry, you won’t feel a thing. Filth doesn’t feel pain.” I shoot him once in the head. He wasn’t worth the price of two bullets.



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