Chapter ThreeA Chapter by ObsidianSea
Wherever those helicopters were going, they were hauling serious a*s. They were almost out of sight by the time I reached the window. Their deep, pulsing roar slowly subsided as they vanished over an office complex east of my apartment. I counted three of them, all Chinooks. I recognized the big, bulky military transport from visiting my brother on Scott AFB in March. He had taken me on a short tour of the base and pointed out and named the various aircraft coming on and off the base. AC-130's, F-16's, F-15's, F-22's, a crap ton of transport planes, and a few helicopters like the Chinook. He had just gotten back from his 2nd tour in Afghanistan, and we made sure to celebrate. One week and ten hangovers later, he opted for an early deployment for another tour to get some extra cash. He was killed in a multi-car pileup on his way to the base.
I still remember the morning he left the apartment, he was so happy to get back in the air. My brother flew B-1's, the big black folded-wing bombers. One hour after he left, I got a call from my mom. She was hysterical and I could barely understand her through her screaming and sobbing. Once I calmed her down to understandable levels, she told me Nathan had been killed. I dropped my drink and staggered the counter. I could barely stand. I let go of the phone, letting it dangle in mid-air on the cord. I could vaguely hear mom on the other end, calling my name. It couldn't be true. There had been a mix-up. I hung up on mom and threw on a fresh tshirt. I grabbed my keys and headed for the door. I was turning the knob when there was a knock from outside. I paused for a moment. I slowly turned the knob and opened the door to a Newfield police officer.
He was an older man, salt and pepper color dominating his hair and mustache. We just stared at each other for a moment, taking each other in. My jaw trembled, and hot tears ran freely from my eyes. He put his hand on my shoulder and said,"I'm sorry, son." I just turned and walked back into the apartment without saying a word. I curled up on the couch and fell asleep, trying as hard as I could to forget the hole that had just been cut in my heart. Airman First Class Nathan James Brooks was buried with a 21-gun salute and was posthumously awarded the Airman's Medal. I shed a single tear in remembrance of Nathan. It rained the day of the funeral. The base chaplain came forward and said the usual kind words, that Nathan was an outstanding airman who had in just a short four years become an air force officer. It had been nearly six months since we buried him. I slowly stepped away from the window and wiped my cheek dry. I stood there for a moment and went back over some old memories of he and I back when we were kids.
Nathan was three years older than me, and he was obsessed with airplanes. I remember me being four years old and sitting on Dad's lap on the front porch. From my parents' front porch, you could see for miles. It was a sunny and slightly cloudy day. The front door burst open and Nathan stumbled out of the house. He was wearing a green shirt and overalls and wasn't wearing any shoes(much to my mother's chagrin). He held a small wooden glider in his hand. He was pretending to fly it with his hand, making the propeller noises with his mouth. He bolted down the steps and into the yard, circling the plane around himself and dashing towards the big tree near the driveway. He was giggling as he looked back at me, his eyes shining with youth. I cried as I remembered this long lost memory, smiling through my tears. Keep flying, Nathan.
© 2011 ObsidianSea
Added on August 18, 2011
Last Updated on August 18, 2011
AboutI'm a dreamer. 20. Male. Drummer. And a pretty crummy writer. Just peruse what i got and find whatever it is you're looking for. I have a particular taste for writing things about alternate.. more..