Posted by: endithinks | July 28, 2010

Stream of Consciousness writing(Unedited writing)

There was only half a clip left as Sergent John Mckinly released the clip and inspected it as he sat against the cave wall.  The rookie hadn’t made it past that last land mine and McKinly was alone again as he almost always was on these missions.  He knew that there were about seven to nine insurgents in this cave from their reliable informant Habib, but he had no idea of their armanments.

The last group he had encountered were fighting with a mixture of Russian and improvised weapons.  One insurgent had a Kalishnikov while the other three came at them with modified gardening tools.  One of them actually brandished a sharpened hand scythe that was more suited to reaping poppy than cutting down infidels.

McKinley pulled out his pick and started running through his short cropped but incestintly nappy hair and practiced his breathing.  He was halfway through his self taught sutra when he heard gravel displaced to his right.  He pulled out his knife and slashed downward towards the ground in the nearly pitch black cave and felt the knife sink into some sort of flesh as a scream echoed around him.

He reversed the blade and swung it upwards catching the person in the stomach and the cries stopped abruptly as he punctured a lung.  He laid down the man on the ground and started the search finding a Beretta with two clips and a canteen filled with  traditional fermented goat’s milk.  He took a large swig of it and then capped it.  He holstered his knife and took the safety off the Beretta.

Mahmud couldn’t breathe.  He was squatting on the ground shaking.  The Kalishnikov keeping him from falling down as its butt dug into the sandy ground.  He hadn’t wanted to be a soldier, but what other choice did he have when the warlords burned his farm to the ground looking for poppy?  His wife had been the one to put the idea into his head, but he was the one who had showed up at their recrutiment party those two months ago.

He had not fired the gun, but had pried it out of the dead fingers of his neighbor Huez after Huez had tried to shoot at an American convoy that was delivering fuel to their base a few miles out of town.  The Americans had destroyed his home with gunfire and only the second daughter had survived.  She was hiding in the kitchen underneath the piles of wheat that the family had just bartered for the previous day.  When the Americans found her they searched her and then let her go giving her twenty dollars and pointing towards the main town two kilometers away.  Mahmud had come over after the men left picking his way around the rubble of his oldest neighbors house only to find the gun still in Huez’s hands.  The gun had no bullets left as Huez had fired wildy into the ceiling unused to the kick from the powerful assault rifle.

Mahmud had polished it and carved in the name of Huez’s family into the stock with his rat knife and he had carried with him wherever he went.  The Americans had questioned him the following day and Mahmud, who spoke very good English, had told them what they wanted to hear.  They left him actually giving him a card for one of their officers in case he ever wanted to earn a little extra money as an informant.  Mahmud nodded his head and thanked them and then moved his family to a distant relatives house the next day.

The burning happened a few days later when the Taliban came to his home seeking a place to hole up for the night.  He had allowed them and in the middle of the night one of them in a poppy infused stupor started berating him for not offering them some sort of drug.  Mahmud tried to tell them that he grew grains only not poppy, but they did not believe him.  By the time they were asleep his farm was burned to the ground and he had only kept his life by showing them where he had hidden his emergency funds underneath the floorboards of his bedroom.

He went to his relatives house the next day walking from his hometown across ten kilometers of hills and dust only to be told by his wife he had to provide for the family in any way neccesary.  His cousin had been matryred earlier that year for the Taliban and the funeral expenses had been the equivalent of two years salary.  His wife was very impressed that they took such good care of the patriots.

Mahmud was shaking when he heard Luna’s scream further out of the cave.  He shook out a clip from his bag and tried to insert it into the ammunition slot like he had seen dozens do it before, but the clip kept slipping from his fingers.  He started a little prayer although he wasn’t a religious man by any stretch of the word and praised God when the clip finally slipped into the chamber.  Luna stopped screaming and Mahmud knew why.

McKinley finished off the canteen of goat milk and wiped his mouth with the back of his hand.  His hands were large and dry with cracking calluses around his palms.  He had forgotten his lotion back at camp, but that didn’t seem to matter much now.  The rookie was only a few dozen meters away, or what was left of him, but McKinley had  to keep moving.  There wasn’t time to bury the  fallen when there were still insurgents in this cave probably planning an ambush as he sat their getting buzzed on gallows milk.  He checked the barrel and chambered a round and stood up steadying himself on the wall a moment as the milk worked on his inner ear.

He had taken off his boots to make his steps more quiet and it served him well as he came up behind a man squatting on the ground shaking.  McKinley struck down hard with the Berretta landing a powerful blow on the man’s head.  The man crumpled to the ground with a groan and McKinley relieved him of the AK-47.  He bound his hands and feet and gagged him and started moving deeper into the cave.

When Mahmud woke up a few minutes later he couldn’t move.  His hands were tied behind his back and his feet were lashed together.  He had a gag in his mouth, but he could breathe just fine.  He rolled to his side trying to pierce the darkness of the cave to no avail.  The soldier must have thought there were others in this cave if he had left him bound like this, but the only other person that had hidden in this cave was the most likely deceased Luna.  Mahmud muttered a few curses into the dust and waited for the soldier to come back.

Mckinley reached the back of the cave and only found a few packs of foodstuffs and another landmine that looked like a left over from Vietnam.  He took a few bites of the hard tack bread and left the rest.  He went back to his prisoner and was pleased to see that the man had only just regained consciousness.  He pulled off the gag and folded it then stuffed it into his pocket.

“Are you awake?” McKinley asked in flawless Arabic.

“Yes I awake.  I surrender no fight I promise.”  said Mahmud.

“Okay.  Get up, we are going back to my base.”

“I don’t fight, can’t you let me go?”

“Not my decision buddy.  Come on stand up.”  McKinley hoisted him up by an arm and pushed him forward.

They started walking towards the mouth of the cave and Mahmud just concentrated on putting one foot in front of another.  McKinley was silent as they emerged into the sunlight of the afternoon.  He pulled out his radio and started raising the forward operating base.  Mahmud listened as McKinley said some sort of gibberish into the radio followed by a few grunts.

McKinley pulled out a stake and attached a yellow small flag to it and slammed it into the ground near the entrance.

“What that for?”  Mahmud asked.

McKinley kicked the stake into the ground further and took a picture with his SAT phone of the mouth of the cave.  He hit a few keys on the phone and hit send.

“Google maps.”  McKinley said.

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Responses

  1. […] The War (part two) Part one here. […]


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