Part 2: In matters of War, Truth, and the Illusion of choice

Part 2: In matters of War, Truth, and the Illusion of choice

A Story by words at play

Part numero dos of my first story. If you decided to read this far I thank you heartily and hope you enjoy it!

It rang out in the silence. Like the first raindrop of a storm hitting the fragile calm of a pond, moments before the others bombard down. It rippled around the room, creating a flurry of chaos in its wake. The tension in the room reached its breaking point and snapped. For the next thirty seconds everything was a blur of yelling and brandishing guns. Daenth had his rifle toward his victim on the ground while everyone else had theirs unwavering on him. Attempted negotiations and threats bounced around the room in equal amounts while the boy on the ground let out a pitiful whimper and curled even tighter into his ball. The yelling rose into frantic screaming for Daenth to put his gun down and, from daenth, threats of shooting the "pathetic coward.” Words thundered around the room drowning each other out, resulting in a mess of loud roaring from every direction. The boy yelped.
A gunshot crashed through the room.
Daenth dropped his rifle and fell to the ground clutching his side. Scarlet burst between his fingers.
For a half second everything was silent. Mern, Grieg, and Braide stared dumbfounded as Daenth collapsed limply to the ground. He hit the ground with a solid thump as Mern took a hurried step toward him. Braide and Grieg simultaneously looked at the others still upheld rifle, both wondering who had fired the shot. Mern managed another step before the concrete around him began to explode.
He launched himself backwards, stumbling away from the gaping hole in the wall and the bullets racing through it. 
"Get down!" He roared, even as the only other two on their feet dropped to the floor.
The unmistakable sound of gunfire rattled off in the distance, answered by their own. 
A man screamed.
The sound of artillery being launched thundered from across the river.
"The kid!" Grieg shouted to Braide pointing at the messenger still curled up on the ground in the middle of the room. He nodded quickly and slid up against the wall. 
An explosion tore through a building somewhere close by.
Braide cautiously peered out. 
The store sat pleasantly on the corner of Helix and Riverwalk somewhere near the middle of the city. Riverwalk was so named because it paralleled the river that split Pointeview in two sides. As with any other town that could boast a landmark splitting the town in half, it created two nearly separate identities. The people who bought into the split referred to themselves as North and Southpointers. They were eager to boast about their own qualities and more eager to point out flaws in the other. It led to a few stereotypes and even physical fights when pride was hurt. But now the terms Northpointe and Southpointe meant a great deal more. Southpointe held one of the last gatherings of Humans left on earth still able to fight for themselves while Northpointe held exactly what they fought against. Now, Southpointe was being taken as Braide watched.
Enemy soldiers spilled over the walls into shallower parts of the river, firing indiscriminately at anything that moved or fired back. The water leaped and danced around them as bullets cascaded upon the first wave of soldiers. 
One of them fell.
To the west a firefight broke out over a bridge connecting North and South.
A pillar of water exploded into the air as a grenade detonated, sending three spinning through the air in a mess of shredded limbs and blood.
A messenger attempted to sprint across a street, his shoulder jerked back and a stream of blood fountained from his collarbone. He cried out once and fell to the ground and didn’t move anymore.
Chips of concrete slashed into the right side of Braides face as a bullet shattered brick only a few inches from his head. He pulled his head back in, unnervingly aware of how close to dying he had come. He shouted to Grieg.
"They're focused on taking the bridge about a quarter mile west. Keep the rest of them from looking this way for thirty seconds"
Grieg nodded and sprinted out a side door.  Braide looked around the room and saw Daenth curled up on the ground mirroring the boy he almost killed, both of them pulled tightly into self-defensive balls. Daenth had pulled off the outer coat of his uniform and was pressing it against his side in an effort to stop the bleeding. His hand shook and he uttered groans of pain barely audible over the sounds of fighting outside. 
A twinge of pity and guilt nipped at Braide. He had served with Daenth for a few months and had begun to like him, maybe even look up to him. He hadn’t been like this. He'd been a natural born leader, a bit reckless and foolishly brave but still a damn good soldier with a promising future. All of that had led to this, with him shot and on the verge of mental collapse. Suddenly Braide was angry. Not at anyone or anything but everything that had happened to lead up to this. It wasn’t fair, having to do this wasn’t fair; living in a world where this was necessary wasn’t fair. A nearby explosion rocked the building violently and snapped Braide out of his daze. 
Then he saw Mern. His shirt covered in glistening red, eyes glazed over, unmoving, staring forever into nothing. Braides breath froze in his throat.  Cold crept over him. His stomach dropped.
The scream of artillery as it landed pierced the air. 
Grieg roared from outside "NOW!"

© 2012 words at play

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Added on October 17, 2012
Last Updated on October 17, 2012
Tags: War, Choice, fiction, drama, introspection, humanity


words at play
words at play

The fields of justice, CA

If ever there was a man who could write a world into existence, please direct me toward him. I could use some lessons. more..