Vignette:Fighting Patrol

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Fighting Patrol
Ulbyung, Hweonggyi, Kingdom of Hwangchu
25th March, 2003

he eery quiet of the mountains was an unusual silence for Demi-Corporal Park, the peace and melancholy lent itself to a degree of calm never thought possible in these mountains. He held tightly to the grip of his rifle as he trudged up the road with his platoon. He watched his sectors, covering his brothers from any potential ambushes. As they came up to a bend, Park felt the strain of the march take a toll on him. They'd been on patrol for the last 4 hours, little rest, no fighting, no adrenaline. Each step was becoming a chore. The thinned air of the mountains was starting to become an issue. He wasn't the only one becoming fatigued. The platoon commander, looking at the rest of his platoon and seeing their visible struggle, spoke up.

"We'll rest here."

Park could only be glad his platoon commander gave those words, he didn't want to keep marching much longer. Far too tiring at this rate. As the platoon collapsed around the open ground by the bend, a few start to open up their packs. Rest wouldn't be long. 15 mins maximum. Park began to bite into one of the energy parks from his ration pack. His teeth sinking into the chewy body.

Someone once told him the serenity of the mountains. The calm peace that they brought and how humans must preserve them.

What a joke.

The mountains were a deathtrap, every corner was danger in his eyes. Whereas one may see peaks, he saw sniper positions, where one may see hills, he saw ambush positions, where one saw caves, he saw a stronghold.

It was nothing but hell.

Just as he was about to get one of his energy drinks, a purchase from one of the only stores that sold them, he heard a sharp crack as one of his platoon mates was suddenly gushing with blood from his neck followed by a fusillade of rifle fire coming towards them, men dropping down like flies.