Flashback Into the BattlefieldMature

{Still in flashback}

 

A scream filled the air and Andrea scrambled away, her heart pounding in her ears.

One.

Two.

Three.

One.

Two.

Three.

Time was measured in heartbeats and your ability to feel pain.

Agent Carlson recognized the voice that muttered hasty prayers as they bled out onto dirt, their blood soaking into the soil and staining their field uniform a dark crimson.

The man's name was Jack Blue. He was an absolute sucker to his aunt, and adored his cousins. He had no spouse, no children. But he loved his family. Had a wife once. She was killed when a mob boss broke in and took her hostage. She was pregnant.

He vowed to never put anyone in danger like that again. He vowed to never marry, never become a father. The risks were too high for his family - the family he would never have.

No.

She couldn't become compromised - not here, not now.

A shout echoed just left of her. She turned.

Auk had fallen. His right arm was gone.

She moved back to defensive position, swinging herself up using the leverage of Pardalote's shoulder. Mid-air, she straightened her arm and pulled back on the bowstring. The arrow was already nocked. She let go, letting the momentum carry her hand back to rest just behind her ear. She tapped with her ring finger twice against a small black patch on her other wrist. 

The arrow exploded.

Not stopping to look back, she kept moving - this was a game in which if you hesitated, if you stopped moving for one fragile moment, you died.

Stillness meant your death.

So she locked down her emotions, shoved them all away. Let sentimentality bleed past her lips, let mercilessness and unfeelingness slide down her throat and turn her into nothing but a machine. Love was for children. Emotions made you weak.

The End

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