Part 5 of 7 Though Outwardly We Are Wasting Away

Peter gives a silent prayer, and looks over at Bernard. They each grab a rock and take a deep breath. Undisturbing the rocks around them, they move to the side of the mountain – more hidden in shadow. Bernard gives Peter a worried look because they don’t even have a knife, but the soldiers have guns. Peter tries to look reassuring a much as he can, but inside he’s scare, too.

 

I’m not afraid to die, I’m afraid my death will mean nothing. I’m afraid of the pain. I’m afraid for the world I’m leaving behind. I’m afraid for the people I’m leaving behind. I’m afraid for the acts I’m about to commit. I’m afraid that I’m not skilled enough. I’m afraid that I’m not in control of the situation. I’m afraid.

 

The first two soldiers comes over with their gun slung over their shoulder, not ready for a fight. Bernard throw a rock at the soldier’s head, closest to him, and the soldier tumbles down the rocks and almost to the edge of the mountain side. Peter, then, throws his rock at the other soldier, who falls down on the other side of the rock pile towards the other soldiers. Bernard runs up to the next two soldiers who are checking on the soldier who Peter just hit. Bernard punches the soldier with such force that the soldier is knocked backward, but not before the soldier can unload a couple bullets into the air. One of the bullets graze Bernard’s calf, and he falls back on to the side of the mountain where he originally came from. Peter drags Bernard out of the way, and to the stockpile of rock they have so that he can throw them and favor his leg. Peter runs dangerously into the line of fire over to the soldier who Bernard hit with a rock the first time, and grabs his gun. Peter takes the safety off and pulls the hammer back.

 

Am I ready to do this? Am I willing to do this? I need to do this.

 

Peter aims at the soldier on the other side of the rocks. Peter pulls the trigger. Peter kills for the first time.

 

The soldier falls. The soldier falls close enough to Bernard for Bernard to scoot over and grab one of the grenades on the soldier. He takes the pin out and throws it over the rock pile.

 

If there were five originally, and I . . . killed one, then there must be four, but a damaged four; because that wasn’t a strong enough grenade to kill someone at that distance.

 

Peter looks at the soldier who he grabbed the gun from and tried to memorize his face. Then, he pushed the soldier, as well as he could from his belly, over the side of the cliff.

 

Only three more, but we’re still out numbered.

 

Bernard grabs the soldier’s gun next to him and belly crawls up the rock pile, using his arms more than legs to push himself. Just before exposing himself to the other side, he shoots. There is a scream of pain, but no thud. Bernard looks back at Peter, giving him the signal to come up, but as he does, Peter sees an outline of one of the soldiers peeking over and shoots Bernard in the shoulder.

 

“WATCHOUTBERNARD!!!!!” Peter screams, but it’s too late, and the bullet hits. But he’s not dead, but in no way to fight.

 

Bernard. I thought I would be the first one seriously wounded, but Bernard?! Bernard. Strategic, I have to think strategic. There is three left, but one is wounded. I have to make it up to where Bernard is if I want to make a good shot, but it’s hard to aim here in the dark.

 

Peter crawls on all fours over to the cover of the side of the mountain. He tries to listen to the soldiers on the other side, but he can only hear his heart pounding in his ears. The fear in him almost takes over, but the sense of duty overcomes. The dust kicks up and enters his throat, and he has to cough. But being the trained killers the soldiers are that’s all they need to estimate where to shoot. Bernard hears the shifting in the movement of the soldiers and takes out one of the grenades he took from the soldiers. He pulls the pin and throws the grenade over. The soldier shot at Peter. But Bernard musters all his strength he can to leap up, take a kill shot on a soldier, and all the while take the final bullet for his friend.

 

Bernard is dead. He gave his future for mine.

 

Two soldiers left. One wounded, the other not.

 

Peter goes into an all out rage, not caring if he is covered or not. He runs up the rock pile shooting aimlessly, trying to hit one of the soldiers. But instead he gets hit in the stomach. Blown backward by the force, he falls next to Bernard’s dead body.

 

The soldier, thinking him for dead, begins to comes over to check on his prize. Peter waits and listens to the soldier slowly climbing over the rocks. When the soldier comes close enough, Peter pulls his trigger and kills for the second time.

 

One wounded soldier is left, but Peter suddenly doesn’t care and sleep seems like the most logically option. So Peter sleeps.

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