Tag Archives: war


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Here at Warriors Against Reintegration (W.A.R.), we pride ourselves in doing the opposite of what culture demands of us. We are warriors, and warriors don’t conform. No shit right? You would think this would be a no-brainer. We didn’t choose this path just to backtrack and be “Billy on the Block”. Transition isn’t real. It is a farce of bubblegum ideology from hippie-dippie socialist. Don’t fall into that punji trap. Join the W.A.R. movement, and keep being awesome.


Have you ever gone to a bar and had some dip shit give you the googlie eye because you have a t-shirt that has your branch of service on it? They should if you wear a bunch of moto trash, like custom made Nike’s with airbrushed HOOAH on the sides or some mess. No, you are the casual veteran that likes to rep a tee every now and then. You leave your shield at the door. Why do we not have shield racks? I will tell you why: a bunch of self-righteous hippies think shields are the devil, so they would rather have bicycle racks for their gender-confused friends and space for the mobility scooters of the impossibly obese. Have that hipster hold your axe the next time you order a beer. Hopefully his sissy arms won’t break under the weight of an 8 pound household item.


That’s right, we are bringing sissy back like it’s 1995. The populace at large doesn’t know diddly about us, nor do they actually care to take the time to learn. Don’t you stand there and lie to me saying you genuinely care and support the troops. That was a magnet your ass bought from Walmart. Half of the civilian population would think the Department of Defense is the governing body of Mixed Martial Arts if you told them. Saving some cross-eyed toads in a third world country on the other side of the planet is more important than actually knowing about the people around in any general sense. Isn’t that right hippies? That old man down the street is just some jerk, because he tells you to slow down when you blast through in your 84 Honda. Never mind that he has shrapnel in his spine and still holds a day job.


We aren’t going to let a bunch of limp-wristed-jack-wagons tell us to be something we are not. Why you ask? Because we don’t care what a bunch of Nancy Boys feel like because they live at home with their parents and rage on Call of Duty. The shit show of college bound, pseudo intellectuals continues to divide our nation in an attempt to gain one more participation trophy by gargling man parts. We don’t do participation trophies homie (except for the Army…that damn participation ribbon-you know which one). What we give out is earned, and usually by some unfortunate turn of painful events that often leave lifelong scaring and mental anguish. You better get you some scaring and mental anguish if you want street cred in this establishment. Getting stabbed with a fork from your cousin Dante doesn’t count. Neither does getting bit by your aunts’ vicious Chihuahua; even if it was on your eyeball. Should have stayed out of the little fuckers’ face.


Only warriors need apply. Sword-carrying, gun-slinging, angry, men and women need to tell those sissy, hipster do-nothings to go suck start a Harley. We will not retract, retreat, or reintegrate. It is time we rise. We are W.A.R., and we are truly legion. Eat shit comic books; we’ve got this.


P.S. Hillary Clinton is a traitor worse than Jane Fonda. When did it become popular to get people killed and make a career on camera afterwards? I will tell you when: hippies. Hippies are the root to the cancerous core that spawned hipsters and frappuccinos. They also ruined Batman with Ben Affleck’s dumb ass. Call your congressman. Do something to stem the tide of idiocy today, but mainly find that one ass-hat that hasn’t arrested Hillary Clinton yet. What the hell is this person waiting for? Get your shit together Trey Gowdy, quit tiptoeing. Tell that security detail to bust out the handcuffs and lay the smack down on that traitorous clown.



Thank you.

Warriors Against Reintegration (W.A.R.)



The Frozen

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The trenches were being dug for miles. Slaves broke the earth with shovels and mighty excavating equipment recently pirated from the Mechanicus on a planet far away. The tundra, that was made the unfortunate battlefield, began to look cracked and bruised by the industry of war. The war host had made planet fall days ago, immediately setting to digging in and preparing for a hard fight. The owners of the citadel they faced were known for not giving up their stock easily. Ranged before the mighty citadel fortress of the Black Templars was an army to behold, an army ran by the insidious Word Bearers. Though the Word Bearers were few, their slave army was vast. They did not come for material items, they came for the souls of the enemy Astartes. Four hundred souls would provide the key to a ritual that only they knew the purpose.

As the digging continued, a poor slave by the name of Olaf found something shiny. “Whats this?” he said as his shovel dinged on a metal object. Only a meter through the ice and he could go no further. His trench line was far from the command section and was only a fall back area. No Astartes came here and few slave wardens patrolled the area. They knew it was slow work with the ice and then the frozen soil. He waved a crew close by, “bring a tracked digger over here, I think I found something.” He shouted, as he slid back into the hole. Barricades had already been built along the ground level to shield them. Long rows of razor wire spanned out before that; and then the empty distance to the fortress. Had this been a siege crafted army, the ends would have been reinforced and heavily guarded, but the Word Bearers were few and cared little for their forces.

Olaf wiped his hand across the metal and noticed it was a helmet of some sort. The digger arrived and with one scoop, it dug down deep. The dirt fell away to reveal a horrific sight. The slaves fell to their knees. They had uncovered an Astartes, one they had never seen. His armor was ancient and corroded. He had servo arms attached at the back. As the dirt fell away, his body slid to a seated position, still half surrounded by frost and soil. “He must have been buried here for centuries, should we tell the masters?” said one of the slaves. “Yes, send word, I don’t want to be flayed alive for failing them. The Dark Gods will frown upon us desecrating one of theirs.” said Olaf.

Word was sent up but no one came. A corpse was no interest to the Word Bearers and they cared little for forgotten relics of other legions. The slaves continued their tasks and the body was placed in a corner of the trench, sitting in a dugout area like a statue. The slaves soon forgot him and sped to their chores. As they dug, more items were found. A bolter here, a broken strut there, parts of a Stormbird, the area must have been a crash site in a forgotten age. The Astartes was all that was found in one solid piece, frozen and immobile.

The war raged on and a few days later large artillery pieces were brought in to the ends of the trench line to help add to the weight being thrown at the fortress. They were having little effect and the Word Bearers were getting nervous. They had cut this region of space off and blocked all communication with their sorcery but they knew that someone would come along eventually. The Templars did not care. They were there to fight and hoped the traitors would come close so they could deal the Emperors justice. After three weeks of heavy bombardment, they had still not breached the walls and the Astartes within were unscathed.

The trenches began to heat up and the ice melted creating puddles. Where the tracked loaders crossed it became mud and as it was trampled on, it became sludge. The heat buildup allowed the slaves some comfort, as their clothes were made for this war, to survive, but not to be comfortable. It became night and a generator was placed close to the statue Astartes. Slaves had left trinkets by him to praise the dead. Water began to run off of his armor as the frost melted away. Olaf was walking along the line, patching the trench where the heat had caused the dirt to fall. He saw the statue in the corner and bowed his head for a second. When he raised it, he saw a faint red light growing in the eyes of the helmet, then it moved.

As his body began pumping blood again and his armor turned back on, he slowly twitched where he sat. His servo arm snapped forward, jerking as it was malfunctioning. He began to stand and the sludge and debris drained off of him. He stood tall and surveyed the scene unfolding around him. Other slaves noticed and stopped working. They fell to their knees. With a voice that had not spoken in what seemed like forever, he said, “Where am I?” Olaf fell before him and said, “This is planet Fador, my lord, we uncovered you.” The giant gazed around and said, “These are not the walls of my brothers, only a fool would build this trash. I am Warsmith Brontou of the Iron Warriors 37th Grand Company. Take me to your masters, so that I may show them how to war.” His servo arm then detached a weapon and placed it in his right hand. He raised his power sword high saying, “For the Primarch, I still live!”

The Warsmith took charge of the siege and within days the walls were breached. As the Word Bearers assaulted, one of their transports made for space. As he flew away he knew the Word Bearers would fail. The Black Templars would kill them all and crush their mortal army. In space he commandeered a warp capable craft. He looked out of the view ports at the world below and whispered, “Lorgar was a fool, but he has blessed me with life once more. His sons will die down there.” He turned to the captain and said, “Make for the warp, I must find my kin.” As he turned away, he glanced back at the icy planet and through gritted teeth said, “…and kill my Primarch.”

(Disclaimer: I do not work for Games Workshop or affiliated companies. This is fan fiction. All items associated are owned by Games Workshop/Black Library with trademarked items to the Warhammer 40K universe.)


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The fields are grey and black. Stumps of trees jut up to the sky with broken and charred husks. Their twisted remains look ancient and frail. Fine trails of smoke waft up from the holes in the ground. Small embers can be seen under roots. Bits of metal, burned black, protrude from the soil. It is unclear as to what the objects were. Their function no longer matters. Calm now blankets the land.

Two days ago, this area was a lush forest covering a large hillside. A heat haze can be seen now running the ridgeline towards a cold grey sky. The year’s cold looks at odds with the surroundings. Boots step through the dark grey soot and leave light grey footprints in their wake. Ash can still be seen drifting down like snowflakes. The only sounds are the slow wind and the crunch of the march. The only smell is of charred earth and cold air. On and up the hill, they walk. No words are spoken. The big guns were the last to speak here; unleashing fury, their words broke over like an avalanche on the land. Their shells found their mark. The message was clear. Scorched Earth Policy: everything burns.

A Rough Climb

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Depression can be monstrous. It forms like a mountain of impending darkness looming on the horizon. Waking every day to start the climb, it can take a lifetime. Sometimes you can get lost. Some days you may find yourself further down the mountain than you were the day before. The shadows move to block your path. You stumble on the small rocks and debris. The world wishes you to go no further. This can be your daily struggle that no one else sees. You trudge along in hopes of conquering the darkness.

Jimmy Kalitz was a tank mechanic in the Marine Corps in the early 2000’s. He left Fort Knox after completing training to be stationed at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. His first place of residence was with Headquarters and Service Company (H&S). He was a rude, obnoxious, overly confident jerk from New Jersey. He would talk to anyone and frequently make them uncomfortable. It was his way of breaking the ice. His abrasiveness eventually made those around him tougher and meaner. These traits were needed in order to survive the lifestyle.

Life in the barracks at this time was very depressing. The young men were paid very little, made to constantly clean, and stood guard duty day and night. The actions on September 11th caused the unit to go into a defensive posture. Roving guards took to the streets with rifles and man-packs. Men were placed at every gate and armed to protect. This posture caused all of the Marines to be on duty or a constant rotation. The monotony of inspections, weapons checks, general order recitation, and cleaning forced the men into a hole. They sank away as war loomed and the world spun on without them.

Kalitz and the other non-rates witnessed the change. The Marine Corps had not seen war at this scale in years. Most of the upper enlisted had not dealt with the actions taking place before. The young Marines looked to their leadership and found some of them wanting. The sergeant that was in charge of the shift change and inspection of the guards was less than noteworthy. It infuriated the men to be led by such a poor example of a Marine. Constant belittlement and monotony led the men to excessive drinking.

Death became an afterthought. The young men craved war. They only wished to prove themselves in the eyes of their leaders. Nothing was ever good enough. Speeches were made and forgotten as soon as the Marines left the drill field. They only cared about the ones beside them. The boots on the ground that would win the war were all that they knew. The expendable men with names that didn’t matter. Many of the upper levels of leadership never bothered to learn their names.

War came and went. The young men returned with salt in their veins. They didn’t care what their leaders wanted anymore. They had sat long nights in fighting holes with death as their only companion. They had stared out at the lights of cities in flames. Youth was stripped from them. They had been treated like animals, packed in trucks, pushed down the roads, and pointed toward an enemy. They only wished to take their anger and frustration of their lives out on an enemy that rarely ever showed. The pent up rage from ridicule and control faded into anger. Anger at the Corps, their leaders, their homes, their lives, it saturated their bones. The drinking never stopped. They would get together on weekends or weekdays. Each man would drink, fight, dance, and sometimes cry. In the barracks they would tear rooms apart when the beast inside was finally let free. They would bash each other, bruise each other, and then help each other clean up the mess before morning. They plagued Jacksonville, Wilmington, and Myrtle Beach.

The towns were just a distraction. The men came as a volatile mess. Inebriated to the point of blacking out, they would stagger the streets. They didn’t go looking for trouble. They didn’t start fights. They went out just to feel something. To feel alive. To walk away from the dark mountain. To feel normal. A normal that would never come.

For Kalitz:

Kaltiz was never really a friend in the normal sense to me. We beat on each other at a drop of a hat. We hurt, burned, and scarred each other on a daily basis. I wore a scar on my neck for about three years from Kalitz jabbing me with a hot lighter as a joke while I was trapped working in a driver’s hole of a tank. I remember hiding him under his rack one morning. He was too drunk to wake up. I put his shoes in a line in front of him so no one could see him. We all covered for him in formation. He was a funny man. He loved to joke. His morbid humor got us through our days and nights. We all took on a grim aspect after a while. As a motley crew, we took care of each other even though we hurt one another. Through pain we connected. Pain gives us strength but it will wear away at your soul. I can only imagine how weary his soul had become after these many years. He lost his way on his mountain.

Authors Note:

The men from maintenance platoon living the dread life with Kalitz, the darkness is there. You are not expendable. Don’t let it consume you. I’m not going to sugarcoat anything about Jim. He was an asshole. He was our asshole. He wouldn’t have wanted me to trump him up as a Saint. He was a father and a good man. He tried to help other veterans. He asked me to include him in a story a few months ago. He told me to make him famous. I wrote this just for him. He will be missed and he will always be remembered.

No One Left Behind

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In the military, the phrase “no one left behind” is used on a daily bases. It’s engrained and pounded into the heads of every fighting force. It is a core ideology for conduct. Knowing that we will leave no one behind binds us together and creates one of the building blocks to camaraderie. If the powers-that-be told you that they would leave you on the battlefield, not many people would enlist. No one wants to think of their lifeless body alone in a pool of mud and blood. We don’t do that. We stick with each other until the end.

This isn’t always the case. When bodies piled up by the hundreds on beaches or in jungles and war raged all around, people were not always tracked. In the past, people did get left behind. The average citizen would think today that due to modern technology we could overcome that obstacle. It simply isn’t true. In 2003, there was a single U.S Marine M1A1 tank that was left behind in the push into Iraq. The men survived and this is their story.

The tank was designated 2-1 when it was received from the ships in port. The numbers meant that it was the first tank in second platoon. Each platoon has four tanks. Its real numbers were 587-797 which it will always wear. 2-1 was only a temporary name. The crew assigned to the machine began to make it their home. They packed their gear in tight. They put their pink and orange signal panel on top. They strapped large black fuel bladders to the sides of the turret. They painted their company sign for Alpha Company, 2nd Tanks on the sides over the tracks. It was a green block of steel that stood out in the pale colored sand of Kuwait.

They trained in the tank. It was never clear in the beginning that the troops would actually invade Iraq, so they trained. The battalion set up mock lanes and breach sites. The tanks from each company would line up and perform the breach. Days went by and they kept training. Sand storms came and made it harder for the Marines that were use to trees and woodlands. Their kin in 1st Tanks had no such issues. They came from the deserts of California. Engines were being clogged up with sand, their filters needed to be cleaned more often than anticipated. The Marines quickly adapted. The once clean, new, green tanks were now dirty, dusty, and harder to see.

The day came when training was over. The men were excited to finally put all of their years of preparing and training to the test. They breached into Iraq. As the spear of Regimental Combat Team 5, 2nd Tank Battalion led the way. They were told that there would be around 90 enemy tanks on the other side of the berm. The battalion only had a little over 50 M1A1s.  Their casualties were estimated to be 30%. There were not 90 T72 enemy tanks. There wasn’t much of anything. Unfortunately there was some unexploded ordinance from the Gulf War that happened to be in the area.

2-1 was the one to find that old explosive device. As the tank ran it over, it blew off the track and destroyed a key component. The forward arm was damaged. The tank could be short-tracked to move and get to a better place to make a full repair but that would need a lifting asset in the form of a recovery vehicle. Each company only had one recovery vehicle. It was decided that the vehicles would not be tied up. The commander of 2-1 was also the officer for the platoon, so he switched places with another vehicle commander and took over that tank and crew.  2-1 now became 2-3 in the food chain.  The new commander quickly packed his gear in with his languished crew.  The fight was to the front and the crew was told to stay put. A support element would be along shortly with another recovery vehicle and they would be able to do the repair.

The mechanics watched the tank as they were forced to drive away. The crew watched the long train of vehicles plow by them through the churned up sand. The heavy vehicles had now turned the sand into a fine powder. The sun was bright and there were no clouds. The crew began to work on their tank in hopes that the support element would quickly arrive. They desperately wanted to stay in the fight. The support element never came.

They sat there alone. At one point a jet made a pass over them. The crew scrambled to hold up their pink signal panel. The jet moved on. Eventually a British tank unit came upon them. The crew needed food and water at this point. The British helped them out of their bind. They made what repairs they could and the tank moved again. 2-3 was now a lone American tank limping along with the British towards Basra. Alpha Company had already made it to Basra, secured the bridge and moved on.

The tank battalion pushed fast and hard. It screamed up the highways towards the objectives given from higher. With each objective completed, the distance between them and the damaged tank grew. Through the chaos of war, other tanks were taken out. These tanks were repaired on the spot or towed along. By the time they reached Baghdad, each platoon was missing a tank and the crews from those tanks rode in the trucks used by the unit. These homeless tankers packed in with the support personnel. The battalion moved as one big entity with guns blazing. They became short on food, short on ammunition, and short on water at times. Once they went three days with no food supply. The price for speed to reach the enemy cost them but it had to be done.

The weary Marines took over an Iraqi air defense school in Baghdad. They used it as a repair point. The men were finally able to take a shower made from a busted water main. They used scraps of metal piping and hose to erect the shower head. A month of grim washed away as bullets still flew over their heads. The school had a high wall around it to help in the defense. Little towers were at the gates and the Marines used them to watch the streets. The gate closest to Alpha Company was destroyed. They parked a tank in the gap.

2-3 finally caught up to them in that compound. They had battled their way through the logistical nightmare of a support train. They had to stop and ask random units where their battalion was and usually as they reached that point, the battalion had already moved on. Now they found them and they still wanted to be in the fight. The tank parked at the gate was moved and they were put in the gap. Their mechanic set about fixing all of the issues that had compounded on their journey. It was no longer just the track that was damaged. It was a miracle they had kept the machine together.

I was that mechanic. As I replaced the 1W203-9 cable, we took pop shots from a roof not far away. I was use to being shot at and now the crew of 2-3 was back to enjoy the misery of war with the rest of us. It was good to have those jokers back. They told me stories of jumping form unit to unit and what British rations were like. They British had helped them out so much that they renamed their tank. They took their old name off of the bore-evac on the main gun and painted on “USA/UK” in respect to those that aided them. It must have been a strange sight for other units to see that one tank always pushing forward. We had all come over together and we would all leave together now. 2nd Platoon was the only platoon to end the tour with 4 tanks still standing. It was only through sheer determination that the crew of 2-3 made it. The war machine may have left them behind but they refused to die.

This is a perfect example of the logistical end and bigger picture versus the boots on the ground. Far behind, in tents with computers and as far back as buildings in the States, old men counted beans, bullets, and Band-Aids.  As the machine of war grinded on, they wouldn’t be left out. They wished to fight with their brothers and they did. They had already been marked off of a list somewhere far away. Some one that didn’t even know the number of 2-3 or the names of the crew had counted them out. Yet there they were in the middle of Baghdad. We may never know why they didn’t get picked up by the support element. These four men trudged it out exemplifying the Marine Corps spirit. Computers and gadgets will never replace the determination and heart put forth by men such as these. I am proud to have served with them

Shadow Lord (Episode 1)

The black ship known as the Grogan drifted through space. The voyage had been long but with little interruptions. The Grogan was one of the fastest ships the Dagmar ever built and housed weapons yet to be tested. In the vast command chamber, on a throne of shrouded metal, sat a slumped form. The Shadow Lord Vraylin thumped his fist in time to the plasma drives pushing the cursed vessel forward. Smoke tendrils coiled off of his thin shoulders. Banished from his kind, he plowed the depths of space for new prey. The far fringes of space held planets that were yet to be explored by any of the Rovers. He would make sure they did not find him this time.

Years ago he commanded a fleet of Dagmar warships. As a High Lord, he was tasked with protecting the trading lanes between two empires. Many cultures traded in this region but the Yasra wished to reign over all trade. Disputes went between the Dagmar and the Yasra that threatened the multiple cultural alliances of the Rovers. A young Vraylin was sent with a fleet to protect Dagmar ships. A new vessel had been built with no need for a crew, only a commander. It was to be the pinnacle of firepower and diversity. The ship was named the Grogan and Vraylin was to be the first to use it.

The Dagmar are a race subject to emotion. If they experience an emotion for too long, it will consume them. For many emotions, this is not a problem but they do not wish for war due to the threat of losing one of their own to dark feelings. Once a Dagmar has gone too far down a path, there is no coming back.

It began with rage. The Yasra attacked the Dagmar fleet and withdrew. The Dagmar pursued them and found that a colony of Gert had been destroyed by the Yasra. The Gert had no weapons and were peaceful beings. The Dagrmar were enraged by the devastation they had seen. They hunted the Yasra fleet and over many months they destroyed them. The vast crews of the ships were able to assist each other in returning their emotions to normal. Vraylin had no one else on his ship to see his state. The rage never left him. Once the rage was spent on the fleet and the hunt was over, he did not return with his fleet to the Dagmar. He drifted in search of enemies but found none.

His rage subsided and his body altered. He lost all emotions of good and corruption took his heart. He became pure evil. His body changed from the light shade of grey, to the darkness that surrounded him in space. Malice began to bleed off of him in smoke. Hate radiated from his core. His eyes turned to burning coals of cruelty. His mind only wished to bring suffering. He turned Grogan on anyone that came within his reach. Fire rained in his wake.

The Dagmar heard of his fall. They could not let his destruction continue but he was too powerful. They petitioned the Rovers to join and destroy him. A fleet was sent and many died. He was chased from their region of space but he was not defeated. The Dagmar built a new taskforce to hunt him down with new ships and new firepower. They felt responsible for his fall and would see the cause through to the end to rid space of such a terrible menace.

Once a High Lord but now called the Shadow Lord, Vraylin searched space for a new region to devour. He would raise a new fleet of the damned and purge the stars of all who opposed him. The Rovers had chased him far away from their region to an area he was not familiar with. A single planet with viable life stood before him. Through his ships communications relays he learned that the locals called it “Earth.”


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Everything today has a label or title. We as a society can’t seem to get passed the labels. It also seems that many of the labels are not fully functional and lack depth into the true issue. A primary example is Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). The name in itself brings a certain dislike and labeling onto the person diagnosed but in actuality the title is vague. Media has created a false image of this title and in doing so they have hurt many individuals that deserve better.

Through evaluation, I was told I lived in a heightened state of alertness. When simple tasks of minor confrontations were present, it would trigger the “flight or fight response” which in my case was “fight”. I never noticed it because to me I just felt frustrated with things. Anger management classes did nothing to alleviate the problems. Anxiety training provided the most benefits.

If I were to make the thoughts into a tangible object I would be wearing anger armor. I used the anger as fuel and wore it like a protection. I visualized it as actual armor and during the process to help myself I imagined taking it off and putting it on an armor rack. I was told repeatedly that I should not allow others to dictate how I feel. Why should I be angry? It turns out that anger was just a blanket word I had put on my emotions that actually were complex. I felt alone, depressed, betrayed, hurt, weak, and ignored to say a few. I masked these things with anger.

To feel weak was one of my biggest fears so I purged myself constantly by staying hours at the gym or running to burn it out. I pushed myself through injuries and constant pain that I created or from pain that was now going to always be there. Multiple combat tours can leave you with many scars, some you even forget you have until they begin to hurt again. I was told that I may be addicted to pain and that all I was doing was punishing myself for an imagined failure. I believe the process I would routinely go through in hopes to better myself may alone be my real disease

On the outside it would look like I have goals and I am pushing myself to achieve them. It is correct except the goals I set were not achievable. A perfect society does not exist. I cannot run away from the world or think it will all disappear. War had kept me at a heightened state that we called “vigilance”. That tool that kept us alive now can become a monster that consumes your days and nights, giving you no rest.

For my anger, I can see it in my mind. Deep in the back through all of the darkness it sits alone on a rack surrounded by a black steel cage. I am not angry anymore but I also know that one day I may need my armor again so I keep it around. When I look through the cage, I can see through the eyes in the helmet and know that it is silently giving an endless war cry. Even though I have taken it off, I always hear the rage screaming in the back of my mind.

The Norsemen

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The Norsemen landed in the dead of night and by morning most of the sea village was already burned to the ground. The fire didn’t last long as there was no one to try and put it out. The only thing left was charred wood, stone, and smoke. The bodies of the slain were piled on a pyre and burned before the heathens marched on. They had some form of decency to do that, maybe due to the need to burn a few of their own. A young boy had escaped in the beginning of the raid. He made it to the next town and alerted the magistrate. Troops from all over were dispatched to combat the horde. Townsfolk were worried that they would not meet them in time. The boy was asked if he knew how many of the enemy had made land fall. He said he could not tell but they were large and would forever haunt his dreams.

The Norsemen captured a hunter and found out about the troops through unpleasant techniques. They decided not to continue the raiding as a more worthy prize had shown itself. They built a camp and began to hunt and fish to stave off boredom. There was no reason to hurry or go looking for the gathered troops. The prize would come to them.

The soldiers gathered in two days time. Scouts had identified that the Norsemen were still at camp and had not moved for odd reasons. The commanders of the well drilled force were delighted at this news. They believed them to be sick or injured and an easy prey. They planned their battle for the next morning in hopes to raid the raiders so to speak. Both camps were in wooded areas with only a small field open between them. Down the center of the field ran a road for travelers. They would line up on the edge of their wooded side and cross in mass toward the enemy camp. The commanders slept that night knowing they would show these intruders no mercy.

The next morning there was a dense fog through the trees. The sun was barely breaking when the troops lined up for their march. Along the wood line, the men scanned the field and could see only fog. They began to walk forward as the sun broke cover and the fog began to clear. Only a few steps were made before they could see their prey had massed along the other wood line. Horns erupted and the enemy moved at speed to meet them. This startled many of the men, to know their foe was prepared all along. Some did not fear as the enemy seemed too few in numbers. The force was barely fifty men. They had four hundred.

The battle was met at the road after arrows did not slow the Norsemen down. Their small shields stopped all but a handful and those did no real damage. Ten minutes into the fighting and a hundred men lay dead. Lucky for the troops, half of the heathens were down and most of the rest were being pushed back, all but five. Five of them held their own. They stood alone in various places of the fight, surrounded by the dead they had slain. Like islands to themselves with shores of dead bodies, they were only touched by the waves of blood.

A strong willed commander saw the nearest and wished to turn the morale around by besting one of these brazen warriors. He approached the dead shores and yelled his challenge to the man. The man stood alone with his sword and shield down. He nodded acceptance to the young commander. Upon those shores he ended the young soldiers’ life in mere seconds.

In another area, a lone killer was standing atop his island as well. He wore no armor, was shaven of head but long of beard. He had broken his shield on some mans skull. He stood with only his axe in hand. A troop with a pike arm stormed at him from the crowd. He side stepped the pike and sent his axe in an uppercut through the man’s jaw. The axe slid clean through and on a return stroke, caught the man in the neck to end his life. The hulking killer went back to standing on his given island in solitude once more.

With two hundred men left and the battle only grinding them down, the soldiers of the combined counties of the noble lord drew back to the woods. The enemy did not follow. Shortly after, the enemy left the field and returned to their camp to begin packing to return to their ship. A man was sent to the troops to give them a warning. The two remaining commanders demanded to speak to the man alone. They asked who the five warriors were. The man said they were the five brothers sworn to the king by a blood oath. The men that were killed from the heathens were only the slaves. The ones that remained were the youngest warriors to the king. They were the kings scouting force and only included the five warriors of true age. The kings army ranged into one thousand men of fighting age and a fleet of raiding vessels. His army was to be there in three days time. The sea village was only burned to serve as a smoke signal to the fleet. The battle was only fought because the brothers needed to stretch their arms. Shock was apparent on both of the commanders’ faces. They asked why they would do this to them. The man said as he walked away that the scouts wanted to give the prey a head start before the real chase began.

The five brothers came to the king after all of the villages and towns had been razed. He gifted them with furs and food from the spoils of war. As they prepared their ships to return home he stopped them one last time. He told his sons that their mother would be proud to see how mighty they had become and next year he hoped that they would lead the raids. The five brothers grinned to each other and the shaven haired killer spoke to his father saying next year you need only send your sons.


This story was based on a real event

First platoon topped the hill making good speed to their next check point. A small bridge lay ahead with what appeared to be a guard shack. The bridge looked weak so the lead tank radioed to only have one vehicle cross at a time. Once two tanks made it across they were immediately hit from all sides with small arms fire and rocket propelled grenades. Trench holes dug in the berms to either side of the road flew open and enemy troops began to pour lead into the two tanks. Personnel carriers with larger guns began to show themselves further down the road, lining up for a shot. The third tank caught up to its brethren and they formed a wedge.

“Gunner, Heat, Tank,” yelled the lead vehicle commander. “Up,” “On the way,” was the reply and at the same moment, all three dragons breathed fire before another word could be heard. Their 120 millimeter guns erupted with hurricane force. The BMPs were opening up their troops doors as the flames engulfed them. The three tanks began to spew coax and 50 caliber rounds into the ground troops. The enemy realized their mistakes and began to make a tactical withdrawal but they did not see their true mistake until it was too late. Two more platoons of fire breathing death had crossed the bridge and were now engaging anything that moved. Hell had erupted and the ground shook as the tank treads moved on. It took mere seconds for all of this to transpire.

“The tanks hit a speed bump up ahead.” said the Staff Sergeant, “So keep your eyes open in case there are any stragglers.” The other three men in the four door humvee acknowledged in unison, “Roger.” They topped the hill and passed the bridge. Some things were still smoking and bodies were everywhere but nothing could have survived. One Lance Corporal said to another, “I will trade you jalapeño cheese for peanut butter.” “Why?” said another. “I have blackberry jam and I want a PB and J but I ate my last peanut butter yesterday.” The Staff Sergeant scanned his area with his rifle out of the window of the passenger side front seat saying, “Gunny said the supply line will catch up to us for resupply possibly tonight. We are three days ahead of most of the support and they can’t keep up.” The convoy passed the burning soviet made transports. Black smoke billowed out of the charred hulls.


The Marines kept quiet as they came upon a turn in the road. Transport trucks were destroyed sporadically down the highway. The road opened up before them, turning into a four lane. The road seemed to go on forever into the horizon. A city must be close or a town. The enemy was not prepared for what the Corps would unleash upon them. The Marines, however, were prepared for the worst and things weren’t even close to that yet. By nightfall, the tanks had created a defensive perimeter and the weak aluminum vehicles took shelter in the center.

The troops went about their duties, fixing what was broken, patching what could not be fixed, and setting up a night watch schedule. As some went to sleep, a few kept an eager eye on the distance. Soon they would move again toward the sound of guns. As the enemy feared their arrival, the men smiled for they knew no fear. Tomorrow will bring a new day of obstacles and these men were prepared for the challenge. One day at a time, they pushed forward trusting in each other, fulfilling their purpose. One day at a time, as the world watched, they would make history without even knowing.

(All pictures provided were taken by the Author in Iraq in 2003.)