So I decided to dwell in writing this for the past month, heres the result. Enjoy!
The radio blared on a sunny day late afternoon, the desert sand was gritty and dry. The sun beaming down upon the convoy. Husky squadâ€™s leader was the point vehicle, each member of the squad driving a humvee. Engines roaring, the dirt shifting under the tireâ€™s. The drive back to base in Baghdad was a long one, especially from the front lines of Karbala. â€œHey Dimitri, whatâ€™s our ETA to base?â€ Texâ€™s voice shot through the radio.
â€œETA 15 mikes.â€ Dimitri said back to Tex. As the minutes passed, Dimitri thought of home. A cold beer in one hand, his wife, whoâ€™s giving him a child; sitting next to him. Them spending his last day there together before being deployed. As much as he loved thinking of home, sooner or later; heâ€™d have to wake up. The butt stock of a rifle slammed his window as he pulled to a stop in front of hellâ€™s gates. The bars black and rusted, with concrete pillars connected to the wall for its base. â€œYou day dreaming again Dimitri?â€ Sergeant Hicks said to him.
â€œNo sir, not at all.â€ Dimitri says quickly, clearing his throat afterwards. â€œLemme guess Dimitri, you were thinking about your wife huh?â€ He asked him
â€œFine you got me,-â€œ Dimitri said, thrusting his wrists out of the window. â€œ-go ahead and cuff me ranger rick.â€ This got Hicks to laugh, though it sounded like a whistle. â€œNo, just quit getting lost in thought.â€ His laugh getting worse, the whistling becoming a bit louder. Dimitri began laughing at him as he pulled through hells gates; poking his head out the window saying â€œHappy trails Sergeant Whistles.â€ The convoy pulled into the middle of the base, coming to a holt near the barracks. They all began un-loading, and scrambled like ants to the racks or showers. â€œHusky Squad, round up!â€ Dimitri yellâ€™s to Tex, Gene, Dweller, and Anderson. They stood in front of him in a matter of seconds, ready to hear what he had to say. â€œWe did good today, even though it was just driving Humveeâ€™s for a convoy.â€ Dimitri says aloud. â€œBut now lets move on to our next mission, we are gonna take these Humveeâ€™s back out to Karbala. Apparently the bozos who run this operation, forgot to inform us to help out troops stuck behind enemy lines.â€
â€œWell, what do ya expect Dimitri; we all know the chain of command is just a bunch of dumb idiots; am I right?â€ Gene says, getting a laugh from the rest of the squad, including Dimitri. â€œThough that may be true Gene, we still gotta follow their orders. I want yâ€™all to go shower and hit the racks, we leave at 0600. Dismissed!â€ Dimitri says to them saluting. They salute back to him, then going to do as said. â€œTo think, a cold one is just a 2 mike walk to my hut.â€ He says, walking towards the small housing area of the camp. He unfastens the chin strap on his helmet, sliding his ears out and holding it in his left hand. Slinging his rifle to his back, he unfastens the armor plated vest he wore; revealing his black and grey ACU pattern shirt. He reaches the door of his housing unit, a small conveniently sized building. Wooden walls that he stained to a dark-brown, fold out lawn chairs in front, with the names of each squad member on them. As he turns the knob, he steps into the building. Tossing his helmet and vest onto his bunk, slinging his rifle to his front and setting it at the foot of the bed. He slips off his shirt, his fur glistening with sweat; the contours of his muscles showing from underneath. He pulls of his belt, slides off his ACU pants and combat boots; replacing them with a pair of blue jeans and cowboy boots; sliding his belt back on.
The minifridge sat over in the corner, a barely audible hum emanating from it as it circulated coolant through out its systems. He opens the door, the light flicks on as fog pours from the inside. Reaching in, he grabs a beer from the front; standing and shutting the door. With a few steps he was outside, he plopped down in his chair; opening his newly obtained beverage. â€œAaaaah, thatâ€™s the good stuff.â€ He says as the liquid encouragement enters his mouth, and flows down his throat; cooling him off from the inside out.
He sits there, listening to the black hawks fly over head; the blades chopping the air. He sips from his beer occasionally, as his mind drifts home. He's with his wife, moving into their newly purchased house. "This is nice, isn't it Dimitri." She asks him, walking up beside him. He looks at her, and puts his right arm around her. "Indeed it is hun, it ours,-" now looking down at the lump in her abdomen. "-and our childs." his left hand on the developing child. They both look up, and their eye's lock. With a fluid move, he kisses her; running his hand behind her ear. As they both get done kissing, the moving van pulls up; the brakes screeching as it stops. Here,-" he says, grabbing a fold out chair and setting it up for her. "-you have a seat and relax; I'm gonna go help 'em get the stuff in here." now holding out his hand to her. She takes it and he helps her sit down, then he walks out the door.
"Dimitri?" Someone says to him, followed by a whistle. "DIMITRI!? The voice yells as he feels a hand, make contact with his face at an extreme speed. "Hello is anyone in there?" Anderson says to him, her voice drawing him back; along with the slap that was delivered by Dweller. "The hell Dweller, really?" Dimitri says, standing up; crushing his now empty can in his fist.
"Well, you were lost in thought; what else was I supposed to do?" He says, shrugging his shoulders.
"You were lost deep in thought Sir, I tried the civilized way." Anderson said, laughing a bit at Dwellers stupidity.
"Hang on Dweller, I'll be right back." Dimitri says, walking into their housing unit. He walks over to his bunk, and from underneath; pulls out a munitions box. He opens the box, revealing itself being full of simunition. He pulls his revolver out from his holster, screwing on a silencer and loading the chambers with the simunition. "Hey Tex,-" Gene says, in a hushed tone. "-we're gonna wanna see this." Now getting up as they both walk out. They walk out and Dimitri is behind them. "Hey Dweller,-" He says, holing up the revolver; aiming at him. "-run." Dweller runs and Dimitri fire's just one shot, hitting Dweller on his tail. "YAAAAOOOOOOWWWW!" He yells as it impacts his tail. Dimitri lowers his gun, taking off the silencer and sliding it into his holster. "I'm done Dweller, you can come back." He says, and walks back into the building, followed by Anderson, Tex, and gene.
Dweller walks back in, his tail tucked between his legs. Dimitri looks at him, a stern look on his face. "Now,-" He says. "-don't you ever slap me for no reason again, got it?" Dweller nods, he whimpers a bit and sucks it up; washing the paint off his tail. Dimitri stands in the center of the room, clearing his throat before speaking. â€œRecap for our mission tomorrow, Weâ€™ll be heading out at 0600 tomorrow to go help out friendlyâ€™s that the idiot who runs this forgot to tell us about, right?â€
â€œYes Sir!â€™â€™ They yell, as if theyâ€™d rehearsed it.
â€œOk, I wanna see yâ€™all standing by those five Humveeâ€™s about ten mikes before 0500.â€
â€œ10-4.â€ They all say, Anderson raising her hand now. â€œDimitri, quick question. Where am I gonna sleep tonight?â€ She says pointing to where the fifth bed shouldâ€™ve been. Dimitri, without saying a word; walks over to his bunk; clearing his stuff off of it. As he sets it in the floor, he looks to her â€œWell, right here,-â€œ he says, smacking his hand on the mattress. â€œ-Iâ€™ll just sleep on the floor, leaned up against the wall.â€ She nods and hops up onto the bed, nuzzling herself under the covers. Dimitri grabs his shirt, rolls it up; and places it at his neck. Flicking the light switch, he grabs his cowboy hat and lays it over his eyeâ€™s; drifting to sleep.
The next morning, Dimitri wakes up and looks at his watch. â€œhalf past 0400.â€ He whispers to himself, standing and quietly walking out of the building; being sure not to wake the others. Placing his hat on his head, he walks to the mess hall. The housing complex was nothing more than a ghost town now, the occasional gust of wind stirring up sand. His walk, each step taking about 2 seconds; the average country boy stride. Hands in the pockets of his blue jeans; with his thumbs sticking out over the top of his belt buckle. As he reaches the mess hall, he notices that all the squad leaders were up; cutting up and having a good time. Dimitri grabs his breakfast, and walks over to them. As he sits down, one of them says out aloud â€œThere he is, leader of Husky squad; one of the toughest and craziest squads.â€ Now patting Dimitri on his back. â€œWhen are yâ€™all heading out on that mission today?â€ The man asks.
â€œ0600, Weâ€™re meeting up a little before that.â€ Dimitri replies, sticking a forkful of food into his mouth. â€œDo yâ€™all not have any missions to go out on today?â€
â€œNope.â€ One man answers, for himself and the others.
â€œThe hell are yâ€™all doinâ€™ up so early then?â€
â€œWell, we have been meaning to ask ya something, but youâ€™ve always been out on missions.â€ A vixen says, clasping her hands together and setting them on the table. â€œHow do you keep your squad so orderly?â€™â€™
â€œWell, for one; I donâ€™t take no crap. Secondly,-â€˜â€™ He says, pulling his revolver from his holster; pressing the button to release the cylinder. Pulling out a bullet, holding it between his index finger and thumb. â€œThis is discipline, whether big or small.â€ Now tossing the simunition onto the table. â€œPlus I cut around with them, get to know them; and am barley strict unless needed.â€ He says, placing the gun back into his holster. â€œYouâ€™re more likely to follow and obey a man in combat if you know him well.â€
â€œHoorah.â€ They all say. Dimitriâ€™s watch begins to beep. As he looks down, he noticeâ€™s its nearing 0500. â€œWelp,-â€œ He says standing up. â€œI gotta go get ready, Iâ€™ll see yâ€™all when we return.â€ Tipping his hat now and walking out of the mess hall. â€œSee ya around Dimitri.â€ They say waving.
â€œOh and one more thing,-â€˜â€™ he says, jabbing his index finger into the air. â€œ-keep a beer on ice for me will ya?â€ Now smiling as they nod.
As Dimitri walks into their housing unit, he hears a slight whimper. â€œThatâ€™s way to feminine to be Dweller whining about his tail.â€ He sets his armor, helmet, and uniform by the door; along with his rifle. Placing his hand on the bed post, it wasnâ€™t hard to determine who it was especially when their paw thumps the frame. â€œAnderson . . .â€ He whispers, placing his hand on her shoulder. â€œAnderson, wake up.â€ No response. He plucks her from his bed and sits down, leaning her onto him. â€œAnderson, wake up.â€ He continues to say. Her skin was hot to the touch, yet she was freezing. â€œNightmare.â€ He thinks to himself, as she buries her head into his chest, his scent calming her. Dimitri realizes this, now taking her and placing her back into his bed. Before she begins to whimper again, he grabs a shirt and rubs it on his chest; making sure his scent is transferred to it somewhat. He takes the shirt and tucks it under her head, wrapping it loosely around her nose. She calms down, now steadily breathing; smiling even.
He grabs his things, kind of smiles at Anderson, and walks out of the door. â€œTo think, my scent calmed her and rid her of the nightmare.â€ He thinks to himself. As he reaches a pool they had installed for their building, Dimitri pulls off his belt and clothing. â€œAh, the perks of being the most successful squad in this battalion.â€ He says quietly, diving in. Scrubbing himself clean while swimming a bit, he hums a tune. He swims over to where his things are, and pulls himself out; immediately shaking dry, and sliding on his boxer-briefs. Sliding on his uniform, the black and grey ACU with an under armor shirt with the pattern on it. He puts on his belt, his holster with the revolver in it; and puts on his armored vest. Kicking up his rifle into his hands, he slides the strap over and throws it behind his back. His helmet in hand, he places it on his head.
With a glance at his watch, he notices its close to ten mikes before 0500. He walks past their building, as Anderson emerges from the door; followed by Tex, Gene, and Dweller. â€œHey Dimitri,-â€œ Anderson yells, catching up to him. â€œ-can you explain to me why one of your shirts was wrapped around my face when I woke up this morning?â€
â€œYou were having a nightmare and when I tried waking you, you nuzzled your head into my chest,-â€œ He says to her , trying not to provoke her. â€œ-apparently, my scent calmed you; so I took one of my shirts and rubbed it on my chest. Then tied it to your face loosely.â€
â€œWell thanks then,-â€œ She says, smelling of his sleeve for a second. â€œ-that nightmare was horrible.â€
They reach the Humveeâ€™s and Dimitri says aloud â€œOk, yâ€™all know the mission; so heres what I want.â€ Pointing at the Humveeâ€™s, back to front. â€œTex bringing up the rear, then Gene, then Dweller, followed by Anderson, then myself on point vehicle.â€ They all nod, proceeding to do as said. As the engines roar to life, they pull out of hells gates; and onto the open road.
As they sped into the city of Karbala, Dimitri says into the radio â€œAlright yâ€™all, when we pull up; I want yâ€™all to mount the guns on your Humvee and lay down suppressing fire. Then when they pile in, move back to the back right passenger seat, Hoorah?â€ Their voices ring through the speaker in the Humvee, saying â€œten-fourâ€ to Dimitri. They barrel into the battle, the black Humveeâ€™s like phantoms; their shape just a blur until they stopped. They did as Dimitri had told them, while he hopped out and walked over to the captain of the relatively small platoon. The bullets whizzing by, the sound of gun fire from hostiles and friendlyâ€™s flew throughout the air. He just casually walked through it all. â€œWell Howdy there, you the one needing help?â€ Dimitri says as he reaches the capt. leaning over a little bit to speak to him.
â€œYes sir, we called for you yesterday.â€ The man said loudly, trying to make his voice heard over the gun fire.
â€œWell, weâ€™dve been here, but command had their thumb up their ass.â€
â€œAh, anyways; Iâ€™m relinquishing command to you for now.â€
â€œAlrighty then, tell your men to load up in those Humveeâ€™s. Leave the back right seats open for my squad.â€ Dimitri looks back to the others. â€œTake your seats!â€ He says, and they sit behind the passenger seat. He walks back, and takes the same as the others. His rifle not having to be fired once. As they loaded up into the Humveeâ€™s; Dimitri spoke into the radio â€œAlright, drivers weâ€™re heading to our camp in Baghdad, just follow the GPS.â€ Now tapping on a screen, placing a marker on the camp. â€œNow Husky squad, keep your eyeâ€™s peeled; we donâ€™t know where these suckers may pop up.â€ They pulled a U-turn, and drove back to camp. â€œThanks for saving our asses, sir.â€ The man said, now shaking Dimitriâ€™s hand firmly.
â€œYouâ€™re welcome, anything for a fellow soldier.â€ He says
As they progressed, it became silent. The engine and sound of sand shifting were the only audible noise for a while. Until the front tire of Dimitriâ€™s Humveeâ€™s rolled over a trigger. Its pressure pad sending a spark that took a no time to detonate the explosive attached to it. An I.E.D. Its concussive force and expanding of the material shooting through the underside of the passenger. Sending shards throughout the inside of the vehicle, penetrating Dimitriâ€™s vest; making small but serious wounds. He became unconscious. Husky squad and the platoon pilled out and began engaging the enemy. Anderson running up to Dimitri. The door barely attached, it falls off as she opens it; revealing her leader. She plucks him out, looking up front to see that the man who had been sitting in front of him had been disintegrated. â€œHEY! I NEED A STRETCHER!â€ She yells to the others and they bring one. While they placed Dimitri on it, a few metallic weapons gleamed in the sunlight. â€œRPG!â€ A soldier yelled, now diving to the ground as four rockets soared over his head; and into the remaining Humveeâ€™s. â€œShit!â€ All four conscious members of Husky squad said simultaneously.
Gene ran up to Anderson, grabbing the front of the stretcher. â€œLetâ€™s get him outta here.â€ He says to her, now as they both pick him up. She checks for a pulse, and finds one. â€œHeâ€™s still got a pulse.â€ She informs the others. The platoon and Husky quad running back to camp, hoping to save their leader. As they run, Dimitri begins to stir. â€œW-What happened Anderson?â€ He says, keeping his voice calm.
â€œI.E.D. sir, took out the entire front passenger side of your Humvee.â€
â€œWell, t-that sucks, that w-was a new H-Humvee.â€ He says with a small laugh. â€œLet me o-off this thing, I-I can walk.â€ He says swinging his legs over as they stop. He steps off and they collapse the stretcher. He falls for a second catching himself, his knee tapping on something that sent pain into his lower abdomen. A long shard that had embedded itself just above his hip, almost poking through the other side. â€œAAAHH! FUCK!!â€ He yells, realizing this object that was stuck in him. Anderson had failed to notice the shard, helping him up now. Dimitri pulls out his revolver, taking a bullet from the chamber. He places the bullet into his teeth, and places his hands around the shard. â€œTHREEâ€¦TWOâ€¦ONE!â€ He says along with the screams of pain, now pulling on the shard; biting on the bullet so hard that he leaves tooth marks on it. As is comes out, Dimitri almost collapses, Anderson catching him now. â€œDonâ€™t worry I got ya.â€ She says to him, throwing his arm around her. The platoon stood there, their jaws touching the ground. â€œT-Thanks.â€ He says, walking forward now â€œGene, Dweller, w-watch our six. Tex, platoon, Yâ€™all keep your eyeâ€™s p-peeled.â€
They all nod, doing as told. When they near the camp, they rush him into the medical tent. They strip off his armor, and begin picking the shards out of his body. While cleaning the wound, they hold him down as he yells and kicks a bit. â€œFUCK THAT HURTS!â€ He screams, clinching his jaw. What was minutes for them, felt like hours for Dimitri. The pain, like a fire had been lit inside his abdomen; burning with no sign of stopping. They wrap gauss around his abdomen, covering the wound.
Husky squad waited outside, hearing the screams of Dimitri. Dweller paced the floor, not sitting nor calming down until he knew he was good to go. As Dimitri walked out from the building, his muscleâ€™s covered by the gauss; they stood up. Relieved to see it wasnâ€™t a fatal wound. â€œWell,-â€œ He says â€œ- no hooray?â€ now smiling and laughing a bit.
â€œWell sir,-â€œ Anderson speaks up, patting Dimitri on the shoulder. â€œ-weâ€™re just glad youâ€™re ok.â€
â€œYeah.â€ Tex and Gene say in unison.
â€œThough youâ€™re screaming did worry us a bit.â€ Dweller chimes in.
â€œWell what do ya expect Dweller, cleaning and sanitizing a wound that was a half inch away from being a hole is pretty painful.â€ Dimitri says, turning to the side for a second; showing how deep it went. They filled him in on what happened while he was out, and went back to their housing unit. "Hm, well I'm sure as hell glad y'all knew what to do." Dimitri says, throwing his arms around them. Walking into their housing unit, Dimitri reachs under the pillow of what is now Andersons bunk. He pulls out a flask, it's metal body keeping the liquid inside cool. "This is the best right here." Now taking a drink from it, then holding up the flask. He passes the flask to Tex, who hesitate's for a second; smelling the liquid. With a tilt of his head, he takes a swig from it. "Vodka." He says, now passing it around. Gene and Dweller both loved it just the same as Tex did. When it got to Anderson, she slightly smelled it, the scent somewhat made her drawback for a second. She looked at Dimitri, "If ya dont wanna take a swig." He says somewhat reaching for the flask. "Oh I wanna." She says, turning the flask up. "Shit." She says inbetween coughs, the others laughing; having a grand 'ol time.
Husky squad went on to go through several more missions over the next few months. With several successful missions under their belt, Husky squads 3rd tour comes to an end. As they fly home, they think of their family. Dimitri thinking of his wife and son, who was now three. Anderson, Dweller, Gene and Tex of their parents, brothers or sisters. Dimitri being twenty when he joined the army, becoming Husky Suad leader.
As they landed, the team was rattled awake. The runway vibrating the C-130. As it came to a stop, Dimitri stood; he was back in his regular clothing. A black cowboy hat with a red and blue plaid shirt. A pair of worn and torn blue jeans covered his lower half, being held up by a brown leather belt with a decent sized gold colored buckle. A pair of brown cowboy boots were on his feet, the rubber clacking as he stepped on the metal floor. "Alrighty y'all, wake up! We're back on home plate!" He says, clapping his hands; shaking Tex and Gene to wake them. They wore practically the same outfit as Dimitri, but instead of the plaid shirt; they wore a T-shirt with a winter pull over.
As the ramp dropped, they picked up their duffel bags, walking down the ramp. There was a car waiting for them, a candy apple red in color. They all pilled into it, Tex in the drivers seat. Gene in the passenger, Dweller behind Tex; and Dimitri behind Gene. Anderson in bewtween Dimitri and Dweller. As they pull off, Dimitri begins to speak. "Well y'all, another successful tour on our walls."
"Like a deerâ€™s head." Tex says.
"Yup, despite an accident,-" Dimitri continues looking to his scar. "-we did pretty good, but we always do that." They all laughed, trying to make a bad memory good. As they drove, it became quiet. Dweller fell asleep on the window, his muzzle smooshed against the glass. The car rolling down the pavement, rolling over a manhole cover. Dimitri straightened up, stiffening like a board. His hand, with a quick movement, shoots over to the doors lock; pulling it up. Then his hand moves to the handle, pulling it and pushing open the door. With a dive followed by a roll to his feet, he ran. Anderson and Gene yelling at him. He ran for a few miles, darting into an alley; sitting and cupping his head.
Screams begin to fill the air around him. The boom of an explosion, the pain in his abdomen. The blood becoming soaked with his own blood as he pulls the shard out. It all felt real, too real to even distinguish where he was running. He turned into an alley, running to about the very back corner; and hunkering down there. Holding his head as a small scream escapes his lips, the exact same scream he let out while freeing the shard from his abdomen. Tone, loudness. It was all the exact same.
As a month passes, he is able to subdue the episode; but only for ten minute intervals. This time of barely any peace, he scavenged for food. Whether it was a bug or a rabbit, he ate it; cooking it over a fire before hand. As he returned to the alley, it hit him again. The month of being out there, and its still as fresh like an apple straight from the orchard.
The cold wind, funneled by the alley he was in; sent chills all over. His fur, matted and tangled in clumps. His clothing, torn and thin like cheese cloth. What he wore on his head, a black cowboy hat; was old and faded. His boots, with holes in the heel and shin. The spurs about to rust off. He was huddled in the corner of the alley, cupping his head as panic attacks hit. Words that came from his mouth as he screamed became a garbled mess. Inside, he was screaming "IS THERE AN END TO THIS!?" Eye's that darted back and forth, trying to decipher whats the attack and whats real. His screams reach the ear of a young Husky. His wife, with their child cradled in her arms. "DIMITRI!" Victoria yelled, trying not to wake the sleeping 3-year old in her arms. "IS THAT YOU!?"
"Y-yeah, its m-me hun." He says, her voice soothing him for a bit. She begins to walk into the alley, no one else was near. When she nears him, she says " Oh Dimitri, we've been looking for you for days now; are you ok?" Kyle now beginning to stir a bit in his mothers arms, smiling at the sight of his dad.
"Well, I-I've been b-better.-" he says, jokingly. "-How long has i-it been?"
" Too long Dimitri, too long." She says, noticing Kyle now. "Here,-" handing Kyle to Dimitri "-hold him, he's missed you." She says affectionately. The toddler smiled, cheering his dad up. "Hey Kyle, daddy's back." Dimitri says to his son, tears in his eye's. "C'mon Dimitri, let's go home and get you clean." Victoria says, now standing; with her right arm extended towards him. "Ok." He says, holding Kyle with his left arm; and wiping his eyes with his right. With a fluid movement, he reaches up to meet his wife's hand. Pulling himself up, he stands; riding himself of the panic attacks almost. With his son in his arms, and wife by his side; they walk out of the dark alley. Into the light, where Dimitri felt like himself again. "I won't leave y'all again." He says, looking at his wife and son; who now giggled a bit. As they walked home, Dimitri and Victoria never broke eye contact. "Thanks for finding me Victoria, I love you." He says, just as they kiss.
"I love you too Dimitri." She says, now grabbing his free hand as they walked back home.
Keep in mind this is my first try at writing something like this.