by BIG BAD WOLF
A collection of various short stories and poetry.
|Two rebels fight, to save America. Something I made for Deadliest Fiction.
Chris looked through his binoculars, scooping out the target below; in particular, he was looking at City Hall. He hated the flags that were flying in front of it – one was the Hammer and Sickle of the Soviet Union, a second was the Red Star on a White Circle that represented the Korean Republic, but the third was the worst – a bastardized version of the Star-Spangled Banner herself.
“I can’t wait until Command gives the ‘Go-Ahead’, and we liberate this city,” he said, as he lowered the binoculars. “I can’t wait to fly Old Glory in front of City Hall.”
“I have the same feeling that you do,” said the man next to him. “It will do the people good to see that flag flying.” The man lowered his own binoculars. “Still, I find it impressive that the Commander is thinking of giving you Field Command for the fight, and isn’t going to give command over to Connor.”
“With respect to your friend, that man isn’t in his right mind, exactly,” said Chris. “Besides Robert, I’ve got experience leading men on the battlefield.”
“Sure, you freed New York, with help from a bunch of civilians and Russian defectors,” said Robert. “However, I doubt that the average soldier is willing to follow a civilian, unless ordered to. You were just a plumber before the Soviet Union invaded. As for me, I was a pilot in the Marines, until I was let go.”
“Hey, you helped to save San Fran, and I saved NYC,” said Chris. “I wouldn’t be surprised if you got nominated to lead the attack. You were an officer in the Corps after all.”
“Kind of had to, in order to be a pilot,” said Robert. “You have to be able to give orders to your crewmates.”
“I’m just surprised it took you two years to get into the fight,” said Chris. “I’ve been fighting ever since the Big Apple was invaded.”
“The Koreans tried to draft me into their Occupation force,” said Robert. “I may not of been fighting to free my country, but I wasn’t going to fight against it. If it wasn’t for Connor getting me off of that bus, I’d be in Alaska, doing only God knows what.”
“Could be worse,” Chris said, as he walked over to the car that the two had been using to scout the place out. “It’s not like you’ve got family who were killed.”
“Are you talking about your brother?” Robert asked, as he got to the driver side.
Chris nodded his head, pulled out his revolver, checked the ammo, and holstered it. He then took out a pipe wrench, and examined it, making sure that it was still functional.
“Why don’t you use a knife?” Robert asked, as he checked his pistol, and his tactical knife.
“I killed my first man with this,” Chris said. “That and it has lots of other practical uses, like opening manholes and prison doors.”
“A chunk of steel that allows for quick escapes,” Robert said, as he got in the car. “That is useful in a fight.”
“Even more so when you’re out of ammunition,” said Chris. “Now, let’s get back to Base; I want to know if the Commander made a decision.”
When the two got back to the Base Camp, which was located in the campground of what used to be a National Park, Chris had to smile a little bit when they were greeted by one of his own Freedom Fighters, specifically, a Russian Deserter named Nikolay.
“Vy dolzhny speshit', Freedom Phantom,” the man said. “Komanduyushchiy prishel k resheniyu o tom, kto budet vesti napadeniye!”
“In English?” Chris asked.
“The Commander made decision about who lead attack,” Nikolay said, his accent still prominent. “That is good, da?”
“Do you know who it is?” Robert asked.
The deserter shook his head. “Neyt. I not know who. Something about you two.”
“Do you mean that Robert is a candidate for leading the attack?” Chris asked.
“Da,” said Nikolay. “Connor say that Robert good fighter. He say that Robert better choice than plumber. Commander say that he see you two.”
Chris chuckled at this, and patted the Russian on the shoulder. “That’s good to know.” He then started to walk towards the Commander’s post, which was a two-story Park Ranger’s cabin, along with Robert. He looked back towards Nikolay. “Keep working on your English; you’re getting better at it.”
“Da, that I will.”
“I’m surprised that you’re willing to work with him, and others like him,” Robert said quietly. “Especially since someone in his unit killed your brother.”
“Actually, that was the man in charge, General Tatarin,” Chris said. “He thought that it would be a good way to break me. It didn’t work out as he planned. Of course, the whole thing had been a set-up – Mr. Jones, the man who had helped create our group, and helped to get our information and such, turned out to be a traitorous spy, one who had used me to kill his boss and take his place, in the form of Now-General Bulba.”
Robert blinked at this. “That’s seriously messed up. He created the group just to kill his boss?”
“Something like that,” said Chris. “Then again, he was probably expecting me to get killed in the attempt, and his promotion was a nice bonus, although he still tried to kill me, and captured Isabella.”
“Makes me wonder if the soldiers serving under him know the truth about their commanding officer,” said Robert.
“I tell them that whenever I encounter a small patrol,” Chris said. “Sometimes the information that the old boss was murdered as a result of their current one’s manipulations is enough of a reason to join us. I guess even Communists have standards, especially about honor and such. Of course, sometimes they call me a liar, and will try to kill me, as I did kill their old boss.”
“Ever worry that they will turn against you and the Resistance?”
“Let me put it this way – most of them I found were wounded and thus abandoned by their former comrades,” Chris said. “It puts a foul taste in their mouths when they realize that the Motherland abandoned them to die, and they are more than happy to sign up with the guy that patches their wounds – me.” With that, he opened the door, and the two stepped inside.
“You boys have fun scooping out the city?” The Commander asked, as the man set down a sheet of paper, onto a table. “Notice anything different?”
“Not really, other than they keep on sending out more patrols than usual,” said Chris. “Lots of machineguns, snipers, even a few tanks and helicopters.”
“Did you see who’s in charge?”
“No Sir,” said Robert. “However, both Korean and Russian forces are there, so likely it’s a joint-command.”
“That’s what our spies tell us,” said the Commander. “I had a couple of our forces get inside the city – Dinh Nguyen – A.K.A. The Kid, and Hopper Lee – A.K.A. Hacker – and they got some very important intel about who is in charge – General Bulba and General Jeong.”
“Sounds like Jeong got promoted,” Robert growled. “Did he get that after what he did in Montrose?”
“That’s what our intel suggests,” said the Commander.
“So, what are we to do if we find them?” Chris asked.
“Take them alive, if possible,” said the Commander. “But, if they prove to be too much to capture, I wouldn’t mind seeing them dead. However, that brings to mind why I asked for the two of you.”
“And what would that be?” Robert asked.
“Which of the two of you will be leading the charge,” the Commander said. “You both have good qualities, things I like in a field commander.”
“Why don’t you lead, Sir?” Chris asked. “I’ve heard that you’ve got plenty of experience.”
“Doctor’s orders,” said the Commander. He pushed the table, and swung his legs around; one was in a full cast, and the other was gone. “I could sit in a Humvee and call the shots, maybe operate a big old machinegun or something; however, those boys ought to be led by a man with two working legs standing alongside them, not as a passenger in a car. It’s a morality thing – they’ll feel better being lead by a Hero instead of a chair-bound man.”
“So, just who will lead the men?” Chris asked.
The Commander smiled. “The winner of the fight between you two.”
“Fight?” Robert asked.
“Call it a training exercise,” the Commander said. “You’ll each lead a dozen men, you pick who, chose your weapons, receive maps, and you’ll fight to the last man.”
“What do you mean, to the last man?” Chris asked. “Do you want us to kill each other?”
The Commander laughed. “Ever play Paintball or Laser Tag?”
“Been a while,” said Chris. “However, I think I know what you’re talking about.”
“You’re talking about using MILES gear, right?” Robert asked.
The Commander smiled. “Of course. I want my men to be well trained, not dead.”
“What’s Miles gear?” Chris asked.
“Multiple Integrated Laser Engagement System,” said Robert. “Laser tag developed from it. We’ll be using specially modified weapons that fire lasers, and we’ll be wearing outfits with sensors that let us know if we got hit or not.”
“You get hit, and your outfit makes a loud beeping sound, which means you’re dead, and not allowed to participate anymore,” said the Commander. “You can turn the thing off, by removing a key from your weapon, but doing so disables the weapon. Keeps cheating to a minimal.”
“So, we’re playing a game of laser tag to save America?” Chris asked.
“Would you prefer to play poker, or flip a coin?” the Commander asked. “At least this way I can observe the two of you in action, and I’ll know if you have what it takes to lead in battle.”
Chris looked at Robert, then back to the Commander. “I guess I’m in.”
The Commander smiled. “Good.”
A while later, Chris and Robert were putting on their MILES Uniform, as were the men they picked, as a supply officer instructed the fighters on how it worked, especially the civilian guerrillas.
“This equipment uses special sensors on your arms, legs, chest, and head to determine if one is classified as Injured or Dead,” the man said. “If a limb is crippled, the light will be dim, coming on once every thirty seconds, but if moved in such a way that the limb shouldn’t move, the light will be bright. Should the Chest or Head sensor be triggered, it will register as a Kill, and you will hear a soft beeping. Sit down, or lay prone, as moving will cause the sensor to beep loudly. The training knives are collapsible, with a paintball inside, and the edges are lined with a special marker, to imitate stabs and slices. For safety reasons, we ask that you don’t stab people in the throat – however, tapping them, with a knife or a gun, or even a hand, will signal that they are Dead, especially if you ambush someone from behind.”
“Sounds useful to know,” said Chris, as he walked over towards the Training Weapons. He then began selecting the weapons for his fighters – one RPG-7, one PKM, one SVD Dragunov, several PP-19 Bizons, a few Franchi SPAS 12s, some AK-103s, and an assortment of Colt Pythons and Beretta 92FSs, keeping a Python for himself, and selecting a number of RGO fragmentation grenades. He also got several combat knives for his men, and was about to put one on his belt when the Supply Officer stopped him.
“The Commander had us make this for you.” He then gave Chris a cloth covered object.
Chris removed the cloth, and found himself looking at a rubber wrench, similar to his actual one.
“Commander figured that you’d prefer that to a knife. Same rules apply of course.”
“Tell him thanks.” Chris put the wrench in his belt. He then armed his men, each had at least a handgun, a knife, and some grenades. One Russian had the RPG-7, one got the Dragunov, and one got the PKM. Three men got Bizons, three got SPAS 12s, and three got AKs. Chris kept an AK for himself.
“Sticking with Russian weapons?” asked a man from Montrose.
“It’s with these weapons that I freed NYC,” said Chris. “They may not be fancy, but they do the job.”
Robert had to chuckle as he picked up weapons for his group – one Panzerfaust 3, one M249-E2 SAW, one Knight’s Armament SR-25, several TDI Vectors, a few Remington 870 Expresses, and some M4A1s. He also grabbed a number of Beretta M9s, Tactical Knives, and M67 hand grenades. He gave the Panzerfaust to an Army soldier, along with the SAW and the SR-25. He then passed out three Vectors, three Remingtons, and three M4A1s to the men, keeping an M4 for himself. He also passed out the handguns, knives, and grenades.
“There’s a saying there, somewhere,” he said. “The outside doesn’t matter, so long as the inside works.”
“Bury gun in mud, sand, oil, leave for decade, and it still shoot,” said a Deserter, as he looked over his AK. He then pointed at Robert’s M4A1. “Your weapon though, drop on carpet, and it break.”
Robert chuckled. “I think you’re talking about the AR – 15, this thing’s great-granddaddy – that was a piece of crap. This weapon on the other hand is a piece of engineering.”
Another Deserter scoffed. “I can field-strip my weapon in thirty seconds, blindfolded, and repair it just as quick, still blindfolded. That thing take forever to repair – lots of parts.”
“Less recoil than that thing, and easier to shoot,” said an Army soldier. “Also, this thing is a lot more accurate.”
“Maybe in clean environment,” said the one Deserter. “However, Russian weapons work in all environments – sand, snow, rain, jungle – all work.”
“We’ll see who has the better weapons during the exercise,” said another Army Soldier.
“Yes, we can compare our weapons after the exercise,” said Chris. “For now though, let’s treat this as the real thing, with you trying to kill us, and we trying to kill you. After all, the next time we’ll be fighting, it will be with live weapons, and unlike this practice game thing, you don’t come back to life when your head gets blown off.”
“I have no problems with that,” said Robert.
Chris smiled. “In that case, I’ll see you on the battlefield.”
“Not if I see you first.” Robert chuckled.
(For a number of obvious reasons, I’m going to treat the fight scene as the Real Thing, with Real Weapons. After all, there’s always Alternative, Alternative, Future Worlds.)
Chris Stone – 1xCS, 6 New Yorkers (6xNY), 6 Russian Deserters (6xRD)
Robert Jacobs – 1xRJ, 6 Montrose Cell members (6xMont), 6 US Army soldiers (6xArmy)
Somewhere, in a deserted town, the forces of Christopher Stone – a Plumber-turned-Freedom Fighter, and Robert Jacobs – an ex-Marine pilot, are about to face off. The forces are on the opposite ends of town, initially. Both groups have taken positions, each in a 2-story house.
Chris Stone looked at his fighters – 6 were fellow New Yorkers, and 6 were Russians who has defected from the Soviet Armed Forces, and all were armed. One Russian had a SVD Dragunov sniper rifle, one had a PKM heavy Machine Gun, and one had an RPG-7. Everyone else had Franchi SPAS-12s, PP-19 Bizons, or AK-103s as their main weapons. For sidearms, Colt Pythons or Beretta 92FSs were on their hips, along with combat knives and RGO fragmentation grenades. As for Chris, he was armed with an AK-103, a Colt Python, and he was carrying a Monkey Wrench, which was a nice chunk of steel, and had a few other uses.
“Alright,” he said. “Our enemy is on the other side of town. Our job is very simple – kill them.”
The men nodded.
“Good. You three,” he said, pointing at three New Yorkers, one with an AK, one with a SPAS, and one with a Bizon. “You are to stay here to protect the place, with these three” - he pointed at the three Russians with the Dragunov, PKM and the RPG-7 – “and provide Defense for them, should the enemy get close to the house. As for the rest of us, we’ll use the sewers as cover, and attack them at their place.”
The men nodded.
“Good. Let’s go.”
Meanwhile, on the other side of town, Robert Jacobs reviewed his men – 6 were members of the Montrose Resistance, 6 were soldiers in the United States Army. One of the soldiers had a Knight’s Armament SR-25, one had a M249 SAW, and one had a Panzerfaust 3. The rest had Remington 870 Expresses, M4A1s, or TDI Vectors, Robert himself had an M4A1. Everyone carried a Beretta M9, a tactical knife, and a handful of M67 hand grenades.
“Alright,” he said. “Our enemy is on the other side of town. We find them, and kill them. It’s that simple.”
The men nodded.
“Good. Now, we need to make sure that this place is secure,” Robert said. “You three” – he pointed at the soldiers who had the SR-25, the Saw, and the Panzerfaust 3 – “you stay here, and take care of that. You three though” – he pointed at some Montrose Resistance members, one with a Remington, one with a M4A1, and one with a Vector – “You three stay here to protect them, just in case the enemy gets close. The rest of us will use the side streets, and strike their place.”
The men nodded.
About ten minutes later, Chris and his six men are a block from Robert’s base. “Let’s move carefully. Our enemy is supposed to be ex-Military, and he’s bound to have friends.”
One by one, the men begin to move across the street.
Inside the house, the soldier with the SR-25 sees the opposition. “We have company.” He sets himself up, and fires.
Down below, Chris watches a New Yorker hit the ground, dead.
Chris Stone – 1xCS, 5 NY, 6xRD
Chris and his men begin firing, as do the men in the house. Chris manages to locate the Sniper, and fires a burst from his AK, killing the man.
Robert Jacobs – 1xRJ, 6xMont, 5xArmy
However, this victory was short-lived, as a SAW opened up, and a Panzerfaust fired its payload, killing three men, two Deserters and a New Yorker.
Chris Stone – 1xCS, 4xNY, 4xRD
“Shit!” Chris exclaimed. “Spread out!”
He and his two remaining men kept moving, and got to the house. “Let’s see how they like this!” he shouted, as he pulled out a RGO fragmentation grenade. He threw it into the window, and the others copied him. Exclamations were heard, and the explosives detonated. Chris looked at his men, a New Yorker with a SPAS and a Russian with a Bizon. “Let’s get them while we have the element of surprise!” The three men bust down the door, and open fire on the dazed survivors, killing all of them.
Robert Jacobs – 1xRJ, 3xMont, 3xArmy
Chris frowned as he saw the bodies. Even after all the people he’d killed, he still didn’t like pulling the trigger. Some could have once been his neighbors, or a customer. However, he snapped out of his reverie when he heard an explosion. He looked out a broken window, and saw smoke coming from his base. “Hurry!” he shouted. “We need to get back there!”
Meanwhile, Robert was having his own issues. Between the Dragunov, the PKM, and the RPG-7, he was down to two men, an Army soldier, and a man from Montrose. That being said, those three were no longer a threat, as he’d used his M4A1 to good effect, like a counter-sniper, almost.
Robert Jacobs – 1xRJ, 1xMont, 1xArmy
Chris Stone – 1xCS, 4xNY, 1xRD
He and his two remaining men rushed forward. “Grenades!” He took out a M67 hand grenade, and tossed it into the window, a couple others following. He heard some exclamations, and the explosives went off. The three then bust down the door, and kill the couple still breathing.
Chris Stone – 1xCS, 1xNY, 1xRD
Robert looked at his men – the soldier had a Vector, and the civilian had a Remington 870. He then looked at the corpses – some had Russian uniforms, and others were in some sort of civilian outfit. “I guess they were Collaborators.” He then looked out a window, and noticed the smoke coming from his base. “Shit! They hit us while we were hitting them! Let’s go!”
Chris and the two remaining men with him soon find themselves in the center of town. “Alright men,” he said. “Our foes are tough, but we’ve fought tough foes before. I’ll be with you to the end.”
The men smiled at this. The Freedom Phantom had never let them down.
“Now, let’s find some cover, and surprise our foes.”
At about the same time, Robert and the two men with him were hiding behind a house. “They’re around here, somewhere. Move carefully.” He then crossed the street, and hid behind another house. He motioned to the others, and the Montrose man began running across. However, it was at that moment that Chris and his men popped from hiding, and opened fire, killing the man.
Robert Jacobs – 1xRJ, 1xArmy
Robert took a look at the situation. A Russian, with a submachinegun, was perpendicular to his surviving man, at the diagonal. A Collaborator, with an AK, was perpendicular to him, and a second, with a shotgun, was hiding behind a car between them. He looked at his surviving ally. “Middle target!” The soldier open fired, as did he, their rounds killing the Collaborator.
Chris Stone – 1xCS, 1xRD
Robert looked back at his ally and made a sign – he’d sneak around while the soldier kept the enemy distracted. The man nodded, and fired his Vector, as Robert snuck around the house. The soldier ran out of ammo for his Vector, forcing him to pull out his Beretta M9. Likewise, the Russian’s Bizon ran out, forcing him to pull out his Python.
“Who do you think you are?” the Army man shouted as he noticed the six-shooter. “John Wayne?”
“Chto uvlecheniye Dzhona Ueyna?” the Russian shouted, as he looked over at Chris.
“What?” Chris asked.
“What with John Wayne?”
“Just keep shooting!” Chris shouted. “I got an idea.” The former plumber then ran behind the one house.
“Sumasshedshiye amerikantsy!” said the Russian.
“Tell me about it.”
The Russian turned, only to get stabbed in the guts by Robert. “Looks like you’re red on the inside.”
Chris Stone – 1xCS
The ex-Marine pulled the knife out, and pushed the body. “Keep an eye out,” he said. “The other one’s around here somewhere.”
The soldier was about to respond, when he heard something.
“Did you call for a drain surgeon?”
The man turned, just in time to see Chris bash his head in with a red pipe wrench.
“Looks like you need a brain surgeon.”
Robert Jacobs – 1xRJ
The two rebel leaders glared at each other, as Chris placed his wrench back into his belt, and Robert placed his knife into his sheath. The two then pulled out their handguns, and fired. Robert yelled in pain, and placed his hand on the side of his face, his right ear gone. As for Chris though, he was on the ground, dead. Robert removed his hand from his face, and walked up to the body. Robert nudged the body with his boots, and reflected. Perhaps in another world, the two of them might have been friends, and allies.
(Fantasy Over. Back to the end of the Training Exercise.)
Chris put his head to his ears and shouted, “How do you turn off this thing? This thing’s loud!”
Robert laughed as he watched the former plumber’s antics, and heard the beeping of the MILES Gear. “Looks like I’m better than you!”
“Enough’s enough!” Chris shouted, trying to block out the ringing. “Just turn this thing off!”
“Alright,” the ex-Marine said as he walked forward. He looked around. “Anyone else need help?”
“YA prosto byl eta forma ochishchayetsya!” shouted the deserter who’d been stabbed. He was pointing at the “fake blood” on his uniform.
“In English?” Chris asked.
“Uniform! Messy!” the deserter shouted.
“What are you talking about?” asked the Army soldier who’d been hit with the “rubber wrench”. “This guy hit me hard enough to make my brains rattle in my skull!”
“Quit complaining,” said the Montrose man. “I got shot by three people!”
At this moment, the casualties from the other ends of town showed up.
“You’re complaining about getting shot! We got blown up!” one of them shouted. “That, and I messed my pants.”
This caused everyone to laugh.
Chris then looked at Robert. “Well, you won the competition. Looks like you’ll be leading the charge.”
“And you’ll be making sure that his orders are carried out.”
The two men looked in the direction of the voice, and saw the Commander looking out a window.
“Sir!” Robert saluted.
“What are you talking about?” Chris asked.
“Robert Jacobs, you will be leading the attack, and that will please the soldiers and other Military Personnel, as they’d want one that understood military tactics to be in charge,” said the Commander. “Christopher Stone, you will be the Second-in-Command, and that will please the civilian fighters, and a man that can rouse nearly eight million people into uniting behind him ought to be in the Chain of Command anyways.”
“Good,” said the Commander. “Make sure that the men are armed, fed, and rested. We’ll attack tonight.”
“Tonight?” Chris asked.
“Is there a problem with that?” The Commander asked.
“No sir, I was just wondering when I’d get to tuck General Bulba into bed, for good.”
The Commander chuckled at this. “Good, now get to work.”
Later that night, Chris was taking cover in an office room in City Hall. He looked across the hallway, into the room that Robert was taking cover in. All around the city, there were explosions, gunfire, screams, men and women shouting orders in English, Russian and Korean. However, the fight would soon be over.
Robert looked at Chris. “I’ll kick the door down, and you watch my six.”
“Your what?” Chris asked.
“My back,” Robert answered.
The ex-Marine dashed into the hallway, and kicked down the door, pointing his M4 in front, while Chris pointed his AK down the other way.
“Anything?” Chris asked, upon not hearing any shots.
“The room is empty.”
“Are you sure?” Chris asked.
“I’m very sure.”
Chris then motioned to the others with them, and the group entered the room. Aside from some papers on a desk, the place was empty.
Chris then looked at one of the papers. “Figures.”
“Find something?” Robert asked.
Chris handed the ex-Marine the paper.
“I expect that you and your friends have taken the city and had hoped to capture me and my ally. As you say, too bad, so sad, I am not there. By the time you have read this, we’ll have disguised ourselves as part of a patrol, and left the city. You might have won this round, but there are plenty more soldiers to throw against you.
“General Jones Bulba.”
Robert looked at Chris. “He’s very sure of himself, isn’t he?”
“Stinking cowards left before the party started,” said one of the men.
“Maybe they did, but we’ll get them one day,” Chris said, as he reached into his outfit, and pulled out a cloth that was red, white, and blue. “Now, would some of you cover me, while I put Old Glory in her rightful place?”
The men smiled at this.