A Winter WarningMature

No sooner had the soft moonlight came, did the bright sun woke from its slumber. The burning rays quickly dispelled the darkness, bringing yet another morning. The snow shined in the light, and the wildlife began to stir around the somewhat ‘out of place’ bunker.

            The welcoming light pieced the glum, grimy but tame window, much to the disgust of the stranger resting after another vast, boring, peaceful night shift. The figure twitched as the sunlight warmed his tanned skin, but he ducked under the rough covers, like a rabbit to its hardy burrow, to show his appreciation to the sun. Groaning, the figure cursed the morning candle and wriggled restlessly trying to obtain a well-earned sleep, sighing as he found his comfort spot.

            The room echoed with metallic knocks. The door wailed as the fist stuck with more and more force. The bed just stood petrified, as no thing stirred.

            “Captain, sir! General is be wantin’ a word with ya’.”

            The stranger just lay motionless. Minutes paced by before the stranger finally retreated from the warmth of his loyal bed. He slumped on the edge of his bed, massaging his tired, grey eyes before stretching his fatigued back, which bore the burden of battle scars which provided a pitiless reminder of what had come to past in this officers sad lifetime. He was in a foul mood now, cursing the sun once more for bringing light and life to this ‘cursed’ planet, every day, every week, every year. Not dishearten by the outburst of abuse, the sunlight faded as the rough clouds covered the sun. It was a fine winter day.

            Tired, stressed and with the bitter taste of dissatisfaction firmly in his mouth and mind, the stranger glared at his military, bland room. Orderly harden steel plates meshed together with military precision were the only sign of love in this room. It had no personality, built for one purpose, like the depressing prison cells from which he had once crawled from himself. The stranger shrugged off his scarred memories, and lowered his ripped face. He was not completely sure what was more scarred, his body or his mind.

            Once again, the room shuddered with the sound of metallic hammering, this time more rapid, each crippling shot echoed of anger. The door slid open; the un-oiled wheels of the sliding door released an unwelcome piecing squeak. To the stranger’s surprise, a cheerful young man entered, his smile gleaming from his large lips as the warmth of his mood melted the icy tension that engulfed the lonesome base. Even his footsteps seemed to have an upbeat sound, as the young man passed to the slumped figure, who was still trying to convert his tired body from slumber.

            “Ah! Isn’t it a glorious new morning, Captain, I take it you slept well,” the young man’s joyful tone managed to receive a low, incoherent moan from the stocky, tall stranger. After realising who entered his private, tiny room the stranger hastily stood and gave a rushed salute. The pace at which the stranger had risen from left him wobbling uncertainly on his sore, large feet.

            “Oh, good evening… I mean morning, Sir. Here for the report on last night, Sir?” The stranger had replied, bowing his head while resting his grey timid eyes. The young man walked gracefully to the stranger, placing his soft but cold hand on his shoulder. With his gleaming smile still plastered on his content face, he waved off the stranger’s poor welcome, and inquired about the previous night. The stranger, still recovering from his lack of sleep, began his usual, stock and tiresome report. His voice monotone, but he hesitated as a glint captured the corner of his eye.

            An explosion interrupted the stranger’s speech. The room quivered with fear as the foundations shook. Glass shards erupted from the battle-worn window, glinting like a smouldering flame in the blinding light. The two men instinctively dived heavily to the ground; he felt a sharp jab on his leg. The shards ripped into the soft bed, peppering the two men. Another lower, more violent explosion confirmed the two men’s worse fears.

            They were here. Reasons unknown, but They had came.

            The stranger was certain it was them. Painful memories flooded his mind, as the dam that held the suffering back burst. Screams of women and children engulfed his mind. Shot, sharp bursts of gunfire echoed in his mind, his old scars suddenly began to burn him. The whistling of shells had shattered the lazy winter’s day. They showed no mercy, took all and left nothing but death in their wake.

            With wild pain and rage in the strangers grey eyes, and the resounding ringing in his ears, the man scanned the room for the young man. Creeping across the frozen, steel plated floor like a tiger stalking his prey, the young man reached for the unused alarm, but this was fruitless as another unforgiving four thousand giga-watt, concentrated plasma shell struck the blackened base once more, testing the will of the materials. The once noble steel supporting pillars trembled before the might of the impact, aggressively throwing the young man like a rag doll through the doorway. The unearthly hammering was crippling the compound.

            The stranger tried to call out, but his voice had been stolen, wisped away by anguish and hate. Although his lips moved, his voice disagreed to search out for other’s ears. The stranger, now hell-bent with discovering what had become of his friend, ignored the fresh wound on his powerful legs, sustained by the initial shell. His ears ignored the wails of innocent victims in his mind that has been haunting him for these past weeks, and with total resolve, he dragged himself to the young man. He crawled to the orchestra of war; bursts of rifle fire, volleys and explosives surrounded the bunker.

            The lights cut out suddenly. The inner screams started to fade; his hearing was as sensitive as bat on the hunt, as he located a dark figure, which was laid spread-eagle on the floor, panting like a suffering dog. Yet again to stranger’s complete surprise, through the chaos that surrounded them, he heard dull giggling from the shadow.

            “Ha! God has a sick sense of humour, doesn’t he?”

The End

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