Always Faithful- Chapter Two

Always Faithful- Chapter Two

A Chapter by Dakota


"You're serious about this?" Special Agent Kyla Winters had done her fair share of time in the Corps, like some of the other agents at NCIS, and, like most female Marines, she had a certain apprehensions about Infantry Marines. "You couldn't have gone with Thompson or Gray?"

"What's wrong with you?" Senior Agent Wes McMichael asked climbing out of the crime scene truck. He knew that fresh out of the Corps, and new to the Navel Criminal Investigative Service, Winters would have to overcome several years of the stereotypes the other side of the Marine Corps had about the Infantry; where he had come from himself.

"Well, at the risk of stating the obvious, I'm female." Winters looked down at her blue jeans and black t- shirt as if only just now noticing her anatomy herself.

McMichael raised an eyebrow, throwing a sideways glance at her as they walked towards the barracks. "And you think that's going to make a difference because?"

"The only thing these grunts are going to notice is that I have a chest! Seriously, they're like dogs, almost."

"Oh no ma'am!" Came a voice behind her. She turned, almost startled because she hadn't noticed the two Marines.

Some agent I am, she thought bitterly; aloud she tried to apologize. "I didn’t mean to insult you, Corporal-"

The Marines looked at each other and laughed, the smaller Corporal spoke again. "Oh, no insult ma'am I simply meant to say that we're more like coyotes then dogs. Dogs are pampered, we ain't."

“Dannings, James: get your corn pone asses up here rickety tick!” A burly southern Marine shouted from up in the barracks.

They walked past her and McMichael before the larger one turned, walking backwards, and added: "You don't have to worry, though, the only one that bites is me and I've had all my shots!" He turned back and continued joking with his buddy as they disappeared into the barracks.

At that moment Winters looked up and noticed that almost every Marine on their suspect list had just witnessed the exchange and were openly staring at her as she followed behind her partner through the same doorway the Marines that had just entered. Definitely work on your observation skills! She scolded herself as she climbed the stairs to the second deck.

The entire day of questioning continued in the same manner as it had started. The grunts, realizing she had been a female Marine, would come in wearing gas masks. Claiming through barely controlled laughter that the issued masks were the closest things to a muzzle they had. For the most part, though, after the laughter had faded the Marines knew how to get down to business regarding their murdered Staff Sergeant.

"Can't think of any one of us that liked him all that much when we got here in the beginning, ma'am." The Corporal that had joked about her remark earlier leaned his large frame back into a chair and glanced around the common area that they had turned into a makeshift work area to question the Marines separately.

Winters popped the top on a soda and tried to not make it obvious that she had to look at her paper to remember his name. "Well, Corporal James, what about now? Is there anybody that might still be hanging on to bad sentiments?"

He shrugged his massive shoulders, and pulled a can of smokeless tobacco out of his cargo pocket. He started packing it to take a pinch while he answered, "Nothing out of the ordinary really, ma'am; you get the ones that just don't like the Marines in charge no matter what their leadership style is. Some guys are just born pranksters and some are born hard-asses."

Unsure why James had added that last comment, Winters pressed him. "What do you mean, Corporal?"

He shrugged again shoving a fair amount of tobacco grains into his bottom lip before closing the can and brushing excess grains onto his trouser leg. "Aw, nothing really; just remembering the way ol’ Staff Sergeant Tyler used to rip us a new one in public and slap our backs when no one could see if we got one over on the Captain or the Gunny. Hell, he even went as far as to get Sergeant Christianson passed over for Staff select last month for a prank he pulled on Gunny Torres."

Winters almost choked on her soda, and she repeated his last statement. "Tyler kept Sergeant Christianson from being promoted?" She picked up her pen and started writing at a furious pace.

The Corporal nodded and stood quickly, intent on getting out of that room as quick as he could. "Yes ma'am, said something about how it showed a lack of proper bearing which would cause immature leadership choices or some trash like that." He moved to open the door, "now ma’am if that's all I've got to get out of here before I start tweaking. PTSD is a b***h to me if I have to stay in closed areas for too long." Winters nodded and followed him out. Surprised when she heard his name bellowed from their right as they exited, but for some reason didn’t think the Corporal shared that emotion as he jogged over to the same burly Sergeant that had yelled at him earlier as they were entering the barracks.

The agent hung back as the sergeant addressed his junior Marine, but when he stopped speaking and the Corporal went about his business she approached the NCO. Making sure to read his name tape before she spoke, she pursed her lips.  “Excuse me, Sergeant Loveless, where can I find Sergeant Christianson? He’s next on my list along with a Corporal Lazaro.”

Even through his wraparound ballistic glasses she could tell the Marine standing on the sunlit catwalk had not looked at her once since she approached him. He stuck a cigarette in his mouth as he answered her in a deep southern accent. “Ma’am Sergeant Christianson is assisting the casualty assistance officers in their duties of informing the widow. I’m not sure where Lazaro is at this moment, but I can scare him up for you in about ten mikes.” He turned and started shouting down the cat walk at a Marine who had stepped from his barracks room without a shirt on as if he hadn’t just been speaking to her.

“Sergeant Loveless?” She prodded as he appeared to be moving away from her. “Why did they send Sergeant Christianson with casualty assistance? Is there not a policy dictating against such things?

Loveless lit his cigarette and huffed impatiently, “Yes, ma’am, there are.” He paused and cocked his head to the side; gazing past her. “Hey Alavarez, you see Gabriel you tell him to bring his a*s to me ASAP, comprende?”

“Roger that, Sergeant Loveless!” The Lance Corporal from Fox Company took off back in the direction he had come as Winters turned to get a look at him; she whirled back at Loveless who gave an easy grin.

“Sergeant Christianson? Please, Sergeant Loveless.” She changed tactics. Attempting to be a professional hard nose obviously did nothing for her progress with the breakneck speed this laid back Marine seemed intent on at the moment.

The corners of his mouth pulled down for an instant as if he were pondering how to answer her question without divulging too much information. “Marc really is where I said he is, Agent Winters, I know enough about how these investigations work to know better than to lie about that.” He paused, exhaling a group of smoke rings. “The reason why is far more complicated.”

This intrigued her and she gulped her soda in anticipation. “Please, Sergeant, tell me. I know it probably seems like a personal inquisition into every Marine and spouse associated with your company, but we have to ask these things if we’re going to find who did this to Staff Sergeant Tyler.”

The large Marine scoffed and jumped up to sit on the railing behind him. “Two rotations back we lost another Sergeant. Tyler, Christianson and myself all called him our best friend, but losing him really felt like losing a brother to all three of us.” He took a ragged breath and the last drag off his cigarette before he continued. “Our group, our family, is barely over losing him, and so to send another strange Gunnery Sergeant and Chaplain into our circled wagon train not even two years after the last one when we had a member of the group here that could do it just didn’t seem right to us.”

The agent nodded, accepting the answer as it sank in. She wanted to reach out and pat the large man on his shoulder, but it would’ve violated protocol. So she gave a small comforting grin. “You and Christianson may hold the keys to solving this, Sergeant Loveless. We’ll come to ya’ll if we need helping fitting pieces.” At his curt nod she walked back to her makeshift interrogation room and took a deep breath once the door closed behind her.

“I still cannot account for the whereabouts of Corporal Lazaro or Sergeant Christianson at the time the coroner suspects the death occurred.” Winters hated unanswered questions, they made her skin crawl.

“Did you get to speak to Lazaro?” McMichael asked casually, fiddling with his phone as they walked back to the vehicle as the sun went down.

Winters felt her scowl deepen, “No, and I didn’t get Christianson, either, for that matter.”

“D****t all to hell, Nikolas, it’s none of your f*****g business why!” The sudden shout brought both agent’s eyes to the parking row on their right. Winters instantly recognized Sergeant Loveless from their encounter earlier in the afternoon, but the Marine yelling at him had only a fleeting familiarization.

Both agents stopped as Loveless fired back, “The f**k it’s not my business, MC! What the f**k is your problem? Where do you get off f*****g around with her behind our backs, brother? How do you think her f*****g husband would feel? For all that’s holy, Marc, help me f*****g understand where your head is, son!”

So this is the unreachable Marc Christianson. Winters thought, unimpressed with the dirty jeans and backwards ball cap over the shirtless torso. The agents approached gingerly whispering their assumptions as the Marines continued cleaning out the bed of the large truck Christianson had drove up in.

“He’s not going to be thinking much about anything Nik, because he’s f*****g dead. Our brothers are f*****g dead, man.”

Loveless scoffed and threw a cigarette on the ground. “Yeah, MC, they’re gone, so I guess you’re just going to move in, play f*****g house, and pick up those pieces for yourself huh?” When he didn’t get an answer Loveless exploded, giving the silent eavesdroppers a startle. “HUH? Never mind how much that man f*****g loved you, right? Never mind how much he f*****g bled for you! Covered s**t up for you! Putting his own f*****g career at risk so you weren’t labeled a Blue Falcon.” Nikolas scoffed and threw his arms up in the air when he looked up to find Christianson just staring at him, an issued gear bag in his hand. “Yeah, I see your point, MC. F**k that man, and f**k his memory because that’s a hot piece of cherry tart just going to f*****g waste if the brother he trusted most ain’t moving in on her, right?”

“I risked just as much for him as he did for me, Loveless! F**k, man, I knew him from boot camp all the way up into the f*****g fleet, brother. I f*****g loved him too, d****t!” Christianson’s voice broke and he looked down and took a deep breath before looking back up with a plea in his eyes. “I’m moving back into my f*****g barracks room, Nik, is that not enough for you?” He stated calmly, attempting to diffuse the situation.

Loveless scoffed and pulled his keys out of his cargo pocket. “Where you physically are don’t mean s**t, Blue Falcon, because you still want to f**k your buddy’s wife. Stay the f**k away from me, you a*****e. I ain’t got nothing else to say to you, mother f****r.” Christianson’s shock kept from saying anything as he watched his only remaining friend storm away.

Winters took that opportunity to stand up. “Sergeant Marcus Christianson?”

The medium built Marine tossed the gear in his hands into the pile on the concrete beside the truck tire and stooped to grab something else. “Yeah, who are you?” He growled as he continued working.

“Agent Winters, NCIS.” She smirked when he looked up at her stunned. She liked having the upper hand on her suspects. “I have questions for you about Staff Sergeant Tyler, and about that conversation I just overheard.” She added, curious to see his reaction to the obvious pry.

“What just happened has nothing to do with Jeff, Agent Winters.” He replied evenly, stepping off the side of the truck bed and landing beside her smelling as sweaty as he looked in the fading light of the humid Carolina evening.

“I’ll be the judge of what’s relevant to this investigation, Sergeant. Maybe you’d like to shower, first?”


© 2014 Dakota

My Review

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Sometimes the character introduction feels like too much and I’m not sure if I have it all straight in my head but when I double check I realize it’s alright and you’re not confusing me as bad as I thought. :P I liked Agent Winters cool attitude we experienced here in our first meeting with her, though I have a feeling we’ll see a much more fiery side of her in chapters to come, and suspect she doesn't have as good of emotional control as I might think. I’d say my favorite part of the chapter was when Loveless was trying to tell her why Christianson was the one to tell Tyler’s widow. It brought to light the warmth of brotherhood and the cold of loss that we all know exists in the armed forces, but don’t ever really hear about or see firsthand as we go on living our every day American life in peace.
I’m definitely hooked with the storyline, and dying to know who’s responsible for Tyler’s death and why, but have a feeling that I’ll be on the edge of my seat all book before I find out. I’m big into the NCIS tv show. Granted, the show probably isn’t very accurate who knows. But I feel like this novel is going to show a much more real side of a murder investigation in the armed forces. My type of book right here.

Posted 9 Years Ago

Desert Rain

9 Years Ago

Let me know when you publish chapters 3 and 4
So far I think Winters is my favorite, because she has a chest, and I am a dog.

Posted 9 Years Ago


9 Years Ago

She's a little immature for her age. LOL
You have an easy flow to your writing which pulls me along with it. The only pause I had was the switch in scenes between morning PT and the phone call starting paragraph 5.

A good job at building tension and intrigue.

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Posted 12 Years Ago

I love the whole marine and army setting, me being a huge NCIS fan lol ^_^ again great chapter!
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Posted 12 Years Ago

I like the beginning. The feel of the P.T and the early morning. The story got harder finding the body of the dead Marine. Now I need more story and detail. A very good story so far. I miss the Military life. Being organized and one team effort. A excellent story so far. I look forward to reading more.

Posted 13 Years Ago

Still very good! You're very talented. This has made me want to read more and more and more!

Posted 13 Years Ago

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6 Reviews
Added on May 11, 2010
Last Updated on February 25, 2014




I'm a thirty year old mother of eight homeschool wildlings (ages 14-3), and the wife of a Marine grunt I met the way one usually meets grunts: at our first duty station. I don't write like a girl, .. more..

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