Middle School Fiction - Second Place
Rain made the mud knee deep. There was no contrariety between thunder and the noises of war. Wounded cries filled the air and wrapped me in misery. I couldn’t escape this struggle. My rifle was a noxious extension of my arm, firing again and again. Filled with adrenaline, I was fighting long after I should have collapsed. It’s a dangerous business, war. If I fell, I’d drown in the blood and muck.
Suddenly I felt a jerk, pulling me to my face. Pain raced through me like fire. Screaming, I clutched my broken leg. My cry joined the thousands. I was shot and if I couldn’t get away from the field, I’d be trampled. Slowly, I dragged myself with trembling arms and sludge on my face. Someone raced by, stepping on my hand.
After forever, I reached a trench. Dimly, I realized my hand still clutched the gun. Letting go, I tumbled inside. My leg twisted unnaturally and I nearly fainted from pain. Pulling myself into a sitting position, I breathed quickly. I was going to die here, my family far away. What were they doing? Could they possibly know that at this moment I was going to perish in this hole? They could not. Part of me was glad. Sorrow could be for another day. That was good.
There was a man to my right, his breathing shallow. In his bloodied hands, he held the picture of a woman. One look at the hole in his midsection, and I knew he didn’t have long.
“Who’s she?” I asked, distracting him from the pain.
“You’re not dead yet. We’ll prove her wrong no doubt.”
The man shook his head sadly, “I don’t have delusions. I’m not gonna survive this nightmare.” His eyes were misty. “You seem like a good man. I hope you hold out.”
The noise kept us from speaking more after that. Time passed and night was falling. Suddenly explosions pierced my dreams and jostled me into consciousness. For the first time in hours I was aware of my surroundings. Turning toward the man, I started to say something, but then stopped when I perceived his glassy eyes and grey pallor. Life had abandoned him. This is the end, I thought.
I sunk into a pit of loneliness. I didn’t mind dying, but to do it alone, the thought was unbearable!
“Someone save us!” I prayed desperately before falling unconscious again.
I awoke to the sound of a helicopter. Whomp, whomp, whomp. I blinked open my eyes, disbelief plastering my countenance. Through the rain and darkness a copter landed several yards away. A single young man ejected from it. Running with ease he dragged the injured quickly and carefully to his escape.
I realized that the man was just a soldier, not a medic. Why had he come back to rescue the injured?
Then the man was beside me, lifting me up. I bit my tongue to keep from crying out. We reached the helicopter and he laid me down. When the copter was completely full, the young man lifted the copter into the air. Bullets ricocheted off us, but we cleared them. I’m going to survive!
“Who are you?” I asked the young man, my tongue like a sand bag. “Why are you doing this? There’s a direct order that no rescue should come.”
The young man turned to me, “I’m Eddie.” He shouted back to me, “I would rather face the wrath of men than the punishment of God. How could I allow so many to die?”
His answer left me wordless. There was something I wanted to say to him, but before I could, my vision darkened. I arrived at the hospital unconscious.
When I awoke, my leg was set. I would be fine. I went home, kissed my wife, hugged my mother, all because of that brave man.
I searched through the army reports, but there were no records of this Eddie ever enlisting. He simply didn’t exist! However, I continue to search for my guardian angel,
“Thank you, Thank you for saving me.”