I'll keep adding to it as I think of new material.
|Prologue - The Downward Spiral
I stood just outside the door with my hand hovering over the doorknob, unsure as to whether or not I should bother opening it. I knew what awaited me inside; it's always the same
thing. I let out a long, nervous sigh and gripped the knob, turning it slowly to make as little noise as possible. The door slowly creeked open, making that piercing noise that never fails to alert those who are inside. I rolled my eyes and shoved the door open violently; I knew my presence was already known. Taking my first steps into the house, I let my breifcase fall down to my feet where it crashed down, opening and throwing all of my papers all over the floor. "For the love of god..." I muttered silently to myself. Slamming the door behind me, the disturbed air decided to make a greater mess of my papers. Already annoyed, I merely kicked them against the wall and continued on my way.
As I entered the living room, I looked up to the sofa. There lay my beloved wife, who just loves it when I come home late. I began to stare at her face; she wasn't even awake. To assure myself of that, I silently called her name. "Sophie..?" I muttered. "Sophie?" She remained motionless, taking heavy breaths of air in and letting out a congested snore. I was somewhat relieved to know that I didn't have to deal with the complaints about me not being home for dinner, me having come home late from work, me not calling ahead of time to explain my circumstances... What does she know of work? She sits at home trying one of those pathetic "get rich quick" schemes, playing the lottery and gambling on a daily basis, trying to escape the mediocre lifestyle in which we live. As if I'm not already wasting enough of my money on such trivial things. I peeled back the sleeve of my suit to check my watch. It read 2:31 AM. "Two thirty in the morning..?" I mumbled to myself. "Fuck, I really need to know when to call it quits."
I left the room as quietly as possible, and made my way up to the bedroom. I went to open the door, but something behind the door was preventing it from gliding naturally open. I put a little bit of elbow grease and it opened like a charm. Peering behind the door, it was clear that the pile of clothes left by Sophie was obstructing the door. Once again using my foot, I shoved the pile of clothes into the corner of the door and began to undress. Halfway through unbuttoning my shirt, I heard footsteps upon the squeeky stairs; she must have woken up. I braced myself for whatever was to come. Sophie stepped infront of the doorway, glaring at me. Her hair was messy and there were marks on her face from something that she must have slept on. I tried to avoid eye contact, but I knew when those crystal blue eyes were on me. I looked up into her eyes and smirked. "Hey, honey. How are you?" There was no answer. Ten seconds passed, which seemed like an eternity. Finally, her lips opened and she began to speak. "Oh look, it's my husband..." She glanced over to the clock on the night table, and then back to me. "Two fourty five in the morning, Victor." She muttered. "You were supposed to be back from work at what... Eight thirty?" I cleared my throat and before I could attempt to explain myself, she stopped me. "You don't need to bother, dear. I completely understand your neglect for your own wife." My head dropped down towards the floor, ashamed. She let out a long sigh. "You're pathetic, you know that Victor? You can't even balance our marriage and your career." My eyes fixated on hers. "No. I have no trouble balancing anything, dear. I love you with all my.." She cuts me off. "Heart. I know. I've heard it a million times." The silence crept back into the bedroom. The silent humming of cars outside is all that could be heard. She shook her head slowly, and a tear ran down her face. "Just go to bed, Victor. I'll be sleeping downstairs. Don't bother me."
I fell backwards onto my bed, staring blankly at the ceiling. Many feelings were running through my body. I didn't know what to say at all to her. She had already retired downstairs to the couch, and I fear going downstairs now. If only she would understand that I am working to support our relationship, not to tear it apart. Regardless, I suppose I'll have to learn to endure these constant arguments. I am almost certain that they will not subside any time soon. I took another deep breath, and glanced about the room. I focused on a picture we had resting atop the night table. It was a photograph of us as a couple many years ago. My face was very different; much less developed than it is now. I look so young in the picture, and the smile on my face was priceless. Next, I fixated my eyes onto Sophie. She didn't look much different in this picture, even though it is a picture of us six years ago. She was twenty two years old at the time, and she hasn't aged a bit. Her long straight brown hair was always well-kept; never a hair out of place. Her blue eyes looked radient as ever. I picked up the picture and held it closely to my chest. "If only we could go back..." I let out a long relaxed sigh, and drifted into a deep and sombre sleep.
My eyes slowly opened as the rays of sunlight seeped into my room, piercing my eyes like a dagger. I squinted and rolled over to avoid the bright sunlight and rubbed my face. I looked up at the clock. It read 11:35 AM. I sat up and shook my head, slipping my feet into my morning slippers. As I staggered downstairs, I noticed how quiet it was. There was no sounds of a television, radio, keyboard, or even kitchenware being clanked together. I cleared my throat. "Sophie?" I staggered into the kitchen, scanning for any sign of her. "Where are you?" I asked as I ventured further into the kitchen. I peered around the corner into the living room, only to see a piece of paper taped to the table. Curious, I rushed up and peeled it off the table. As I began to read the letter, my heart sunk deep into my chest. "You've probably noticed that I'm not home, not like it matters to you. I can't take any more of your bullshit, Victor. I'm leaving you, and will be arranging an appointment to get divorced. I can't believe I fell in love with such an insensitive jerk like you. Goodbye, Victor." I almost couldn't believe what I was reading. It happened so suddenly, it was almost unreal. I rushed out calling her name, but all was in vein. My eyes darted left and right as I hastily thought up ideas as to what to do next. I walked into the living room and sunk down into the couch, my hands covering my face. "Fuck..." I muttered silently to myself. "Look what I've done..."
Suddenly, the phone rang. My head shot up and I dashed into the kitchen to answer the phone. I grabbed the phone and answered it before it could even ring a second time. "Sophie!?" I cried. My hopes were cut short when a man's voice was heard. "Victor?" I recognized this voice. It was my boss from work, and this wasn't the best of times to discuss work. "Victor, are you there?" I questioned replying for a few seconds, then I quickly slammed the phone into the reciever. My heart raced as I pondered as to what to do now. The phone began ringing once again, and my hand hovered over the handset. I took a deep breath and answered it once more. "Hello?" I said nervously. "Victor. What is the meaning of this?" My eyes searched the room. "What do you mean, sir?" "Don't bullshit me, Victor. I know you hung up on me just now." I became even more nervous now. "Er, no... I didn't hang up. The call ended abruptly." There was a long pause. "Victor, I heard you breathing heavily before you slammed the phone down onto the reciever." I didn't know what to say to that. "Regardless, you're due in for work in thirty minutes. You'd best get here soon, if you value your job." "B-But sir! I thought I was entitled to have my day off today." An irritated groan could be heard as he breathed in. "You know, your lack of interest and care in your own career is sickening, Victor. I've given you plenty of opportunities to reform your bullshit behaviour but you have fucked me over countless times by now." There was a long pause, and I dared not to speak out. "I'm sorry, Victor, but you're fired." He then hung up on me, and I dropped the phone to the floor in disbelief.
Two months had passed since both my wife had left me, and my career had been cut short. My bank accounts have been running dry, and I struggle to pay for everyday expences. I've gone through almost every job opening in every paper I had gotten, but there has been no luck so far. I've always considered joining the army, because I've heard the pay is great and you're always putting in hours. The only reason I didn't join the army in the first place was because I had so much to live for. My beloved Sophie was far too precious to be risking my life like that. But now it would seem that I have lost all that was once dear to me. Soon I will be engulfed by financial debt, and from there who knows what will ensue. I am running out of options, and it would appear that I am to join the army. I quickly made my application and filled out the many forms online. For the next few weeks I was to be going through proceedures in processing my application. The following week, I was sent a letter in the mail stating that I am to pack my stuff and head out for boot camp and intensive training for the Marine Corps. It was really happening, and there is no turning back now.
Chapter One - No Turning Back
The bus was filled with many people of all kinds. It was clear that race and gender wasn't a factor when it came to the military. There must have been at least a quarter of the recruits here being female. I looked around myself and tried to memorize everyone here. These people are going to be going through the same boot camp as I am, and I'm sure that we will have to work together in order to get through this. One man up at the from of the bus was a very muscular individual. He wore a wifebeater, and his arms were riddled with tattoos. Piercings covered his face, and he had a half-smoked cigar chomped between his teeth. Another guy down to my left was a really short and stalky person. He looked really nervous, almost as if he didn't want to go. His head darted from one end of the bus to the other, often. Seemingly paranoid, he clutched his seat tightly as the bus pushed on. Beside me was one of the women on the bus. Her hair was around shoulder length, and was jet black. Her figure was phenominal, and she held herself with strength. As I examined her, she noticed me staring and turned to me. "What's your problem, kid?" She said as the bus threw everyone up and down over the bumps. "I.. Uh, sorry... I'm just trying to get to know the people I'll be training with." She laughed. "Get to know them? Kid, you can't get to know anyone just by lookin' at them." She pointed up to the from of the bus. "That big bulky guy in the front." I looked up at the guy; it was the first person I began to examine. "By looking at him, do you know who he is?" I looked back at her, not sure of what to say. She smirked. "You don't know anything about someone just by lookin' at them, kid." I shrugged. "I just wanted to get to know their faces." She cocked her left eyebrow. "You tryin' to get to know more than my face, huh?" She laughed. "I saw you lookin' me up and down." I blushed. "I-I'm sorry. I didn't mean to.." She cut me off. "Don't sweat it kid. We'll all get to know eachother a lot better once we get off this bus filled of testosterone."
The brakes of the bus squealed until it came to a complete stop. The bus rocked back and fourth, indicating great age and wear of this vehicle. The driver turned his head around and yelled out. "Alright everyone, we're finally here. Single file out of the bus, and line up and wait for other orders. A voice was heard from the front of the bus, "Oooh, our first orders!" followed by a few chuckles. "Cut the crap, men. Let's go!" barked the driver. As everyone funnelled out of the bus, we waited just outside of it for roughly half an hour before a soldier weilding an M16 approached us. "Alright... Ladies and gentlemen, follow me to the barracks. There you will meet your best friend and your worst nightmare, senior drill instructor Gerald Davison. He's going to crush the life of you ladies." He looks around at the women in the group. "No pun intended, ladies." He tips his beret and smiles. Silence followed, and he soon gave the orders and led us on towards the barracks. As we marched as a good pace, I turned to the woman I was talking to earlier on the bus. "Aren't you nervous?" I asked. "This drill instructor sounds like he's going to kill us!" She laughed. "Ohh, well.. That's what they're supposed to do; not literally of course." I let out of nervous sigh. "He's going to be in charge of whipping us into shape before we go into the real deal, pal." She said with a smirk. "All will fall into place, I'm sure."
We had just arrived at the barracks. Our soldier guide stopped and the door and turned to us. "Well... This is it." He said with brevity. "Have fun and try not to get too beat up." He opened the doors of the barracks and we all moved inside. As the last of us entered the barracks the door was slammed shut, sending an echo throughout the somewhat empty barracks. There were shoddy bunk beds lined up across each side of the building. Suddenly a turn of a doorknob across the room was heard, and a small door opened up. Through it entered an older man, probably in his 50's. He wore a neatly pressed shirt and pants complimented by a wide brimmed hat. His shirt was riddled with medals of all sorts. You could barely see the design of his shirt apart from the medals on his chest. He took slow strides toward us; his medals knocking together with each step. As he drew near, he spoke. "Welcome to boot camp. I am senior drill instructor Gerald Davison. You will address me as sir and only sir. I will not tolerate anything less than that. Is that clear!?" His loud, stern voice echoed through the building. A very disorganized "Yes sir!" was given back. An preturbed look wiped across his face. "You must respond to me as 'Sir yes sir!', are we clear, scumbags!?" A more uniform and loud "Sir yes sir!" was thrown at him. "I can barely hear you, pussies! Sound off like you mean it!" With all our might we screamed out. "Sir yes sir!!" A discontent look faded into a satisfied grin. Gerald puffed up his chest. "Good." He said calmly, as he started to pace around the room.
He took long strides towards the right end of the barracks and stopped infront of one of our larger recruits. The drill instructor began barking at his face. "What's your name, scumbag?" Without flinching the large male replied, "Sir Nicolai sir!" The sergent moved up closer into his face. "A Russian, huh?" He narrowed his eyes. "You communist bastard... You better not think I'm going to go easy on you, big guy." He slammed his fist into his shoulder with tremendous force. The Russian man stood there, unmoved by the blow. "Tough guy, eh!?" He said cleverly. "The pain I am going to make you go through will make even the most hardened soldier cry." He moved his face right up into Nicolai's face. "Are we clear..?" he said in a low voice. Nicolai whispered back, "Sir yes sir." Satisfied, the drill instructor stepped back from him and back into the middle of the room. "I think I'm going to call him private Hammer." He looked around at everyone standing around him. "What do you shitfaces think?" Gerald glared at everyone around him, waiting for a unified answer. Fearing he would be angry, I spoke up. "Sir I like it sir!!" He quickly turned his head my way. "Do you now, private?" he asked as he stared blankly at me. His eyes made contact with mine as he stepped towards me.