The sky cracked and boomed like thunder without a cloud to speak of. Beside me was a seventeen year old boy, covered in mud, bearing a Lee-Enfield in hand and holding it out in front of him as if he’d forgotten how to use it. He wasn’t alone.
Engines belonging to monstrous metal beasts roared from behind, or so I hoped. It was hard to tell amongst the commotion. We had been instructed to move forward, but my legs weren’t working right. The boy beside me was reloading, but I couldn’t recall him firing. He was saying something to me. His lips were moving, the veins in his neck were bulging, but his voice was completely squelched by the storm overhead.
The sky was blue with iron dragons flying through clouds of black smoke.
It was cold and hot at once and the mud felt sticky down my leg, so I attempted to wipe it away. The mud was not mud at all but crimson life fuel. The boy, again, reloaded, shaking my shoulder, still trying to form words but words were meaningless now. Everything and nothing mattered all at once.
I was tired now, ready to sleep, but if we didn’t advance soon it would all be lost. Though as much as I tried to care, I couldn’t. My thoughts were filled of greater things, of my Dear, Peggy-Sue, and our someday Charlie and Annette and perhaps a Richard or Patricia-Jean.
Their names, their lives, now never to be.
Good bye, Dear Peggy-Sue.