As I crossed into the muddy field trenches dug into the soil at sharp right angles, I realised, ‘thus my life brought me to this place’.
The field stretched in every direction, footprints sunk into the soil of some long gone farmer; crops torn down, ears plucked out to make way for the bloodshed to come. I looked down at the faces in my command, all lost or scared; wondering if they would see home again. “We don’t leave anyone behind” they had said to me, how many times has the same been said throughout the ages.
The problem was I hadn’t even been born yet, I was already left behind. Left behind in time, left behind in life. If I survived, I didn’t have a home to go to. Next mission I’d be off to another hot zone, maybe in the past, maybe years from now. The weaponry changed, flintlocks gave way to semi-auto, full bore, 500 rounds a minute; the results were the same, dead bodies stinking up some other field.
“Fix bayonets” I declared and everyone fumbled the locking pin, bayonets at the ready, ” here they come.”