The 12th installment of my son’s online fiction series. If you are just joining, click here for the previous chapters.
The morning of March 15 greeted the Marines with a cold and foggy curtain. Mist and smoke blew out from Richie’s mouth as he flicked the stub of his cigarette onto the ground. A few months ago his body would have been sore from the construction job of the day before, but having done these jobs over and over, the work hardly bothered anymore. His headache from the drinks the night before, however, had already put him in a foul mood.
Rumors were that command decided to give them some real experience and they’d be heading out soon. About time.
The past few months had been cold and tedious. Between combat training, railroad work, or unloading cargo from ships, they’d been kept busy doing everything other than what they had been sent to do: killing Germans. It didn’t help to see the trains come through with wounded French soldiers from the front lines. The veterans used to tell them that when you’re in the 1st line of trenches and all between you and the Hun are parallel rows upon rows of barbed wire and the open, lifeless expanse of “No Man’s Land,” you no longer wish to get out unscathed as that seems a pointless fantasy; you’re hoping to get out as soon as possible, and just praying you don’t leave too much of yourself on the battlefield… (Read more)