Chapter 1: Discovering an Enemy
The tall soldier trudged up the steep dune, kicking sand up with each stomp. The burning midday sun of the desert gleamed off his sky blue helmet with a blinding white light. He put his straightened hand up to his forehead to shield his eyes from the sun while he scanned the perimeter, and missing the pair of plastic sand colored binoculars on a faraway dune, he proceeded to plop himself down on the dune slope with a sense of safety.
The marksman behind the faraway dune dropped his binoculars and tripod and lifted the heavy .50 caliber anti-materiel sniping rifle and sight two inches from his right eye.
"Hello," the marksman quietly said with a hint of sadism.
The soldier shoved his index finger into his nostril, and wiped his nose with his forearm with a quick, sneaky action.
"Ooh, I saw that!" he went on. "Don't you eat your booger, young man,"
The marksman placed his forefinger on the trigger guard. He would not fire until he could see the target relax and possibly even lay down, and he placed the reticule and crosshairs on the target's face. He sighed with a hint of boredom. To this end, the nose picker drew a cigarette and lighter and began to smoke, as the tail of the cig lit up with a radiant red.
Now that the target had finally relaxed, this would be an easy hit-kill if the target did not move. The marksman drew an M3 tungsten core .50 caliber round—the ones that would not create a bloodier gaping hole and would kill had he missed the shot anyway. He pulled the bolt action lever back slowly, placed the round, and pushed the lever forward, preparing the shot.
The target reared his head up and took his cigarette out of his mouth, letting a steady stream of wispy smoke from his nose and mouth. He had the soldier covered with his sight, and when the soldier lifted the cig to his mouth, he squeezed on the trigger. The muzzle roared with flames and a piercing blast, a whip-crack of the bullet at subsonic speeds following. Recoil from the muzzle forced the gun butt on his shoulder hard, and as he peered into the sight, he saw the target, now dead, slowly sliding down the dune slope, leaving a trail of bloodied sand.
Hit! He stripped his rifle into sections and placed it in a small grey suitcase, scooped up the shots and funneled them into a machinegun belt-box, and placed his binoculars and tripod into his field pack. He then darted from his secluded spot across the open ground slightly crouched so he may not be seen to the body. Close up, the body had been hit directly in the left eye, with blood leaking slowly out of the wound. He inspected the helmet, which had a white "UN" herald on it, removed it, and began walking back to where he came.
Soon enough after ably walking through the hot windless desert, he reached his camp—a small flimsy bivouac positioned on a sandy hill basically in the middle of nowhere, with small towns in the distance. As he entered, he was stared upon by some, greeted by others.
A Texas-accented voice rung out. "Ya got another one, Captin' Johnson?"
He turned around and spotted one private Pete Patterson, a not too bright teenager with a criminal record and obsession with becoming as good a sniper as the Captain. Johnson waved the blue helmet at Pete, saying:
"How are ya, Petey?" He threw the helmet at the private, and the private just barely caught it.
His voice shook. "Fine, Cap'n. You want me to polish this one?"
"Nah, I'm good. Just put it in my quarters with all the others."
"Allrighty then!" he paused. "…Sir!"
Johnson proceeded throughout the camp, and came upon a gaggle of leaders who were listening to an Iraqi extremists' radio station. The radio blared with static blocking out some of the words, and they listened carefully to it as an American-accented person spoke amazingly, in English while someone voiced behind him in Arabic:
…The parasites, the cockroaches. They want our oil? They want to intervene? So be it. We will show them what we can do. These Americans. The English. The French. The UN. Even the Americans and the UN are at conflict. This is all just a competition to see who will posses the oil in the end! We can defeat them! They are weak! They will see what happens when we show them the will of Allah…
He continued ranting on while the lieutenants and commander barked in disagreement.
"Allah? What the hell?"
"Traitorous bastard. Hope he gets killed by all those Arab terrorists!"
"Yeah! Yeah! Maybe he'll be killed by the insurgents who stab his ass…"
"Didn't we get orders to kill him? I mean, he's definitely Western…"
"Dunno. You—You know… uh… I think we did. Hold on I gotta call HQ back." This lieutenant slowly rose and headed on to the radio-communications tent.
Johnson had a confused look on his sun-tanned face. "Who is this deserting asshole?"
"Some guy. What- What's his name again, Lieutenant Carlyle?
"Uh… Westy? No… Westlake? Nope…," Carlyle seemed confused.
With this ringing a bell, the two shouted in chorus: "Weston!"
"Weston what" the captain queried.
"Colonel John Weston. Everyone says he's a fucking mental-house patient. He lead counterinsurgency campaigns in 2006 and 2007 with all the waves of troops pushing the Al-Qaeda around all over the place and ended up joining them after all his men got blown all to hell," Carlyle said.
"When? I never heard of this douche bag," Johnson said bluntly.
"He 'disappeared' last year in 2010 and raided three of our camps since. Fuckin' nuthead. He's probally' goin to get headhunted by all them majahideens or whatever the fuck you call them," The other intervened.
The lieutenant who went over to the communications station returned:
"They say they got a death warrant for him and that they're sending men over to kill him," he said triumphantly.
"When was it issued?" the lieutenants and Johnson anxiously asked him in complete synchrony.
"Yesterday, I guess. They axed me why I didn't get out of this godforsaken desert post. I told him we're goin, too."
"They said we gotta go to Baghdad or somthin'"
Everyone fell silent. Only the radio blared.
…and they try so hard to find and kill me. Where is Osama? Missing to this day?Hah.
"Baghdad. Pshh." The commander waved his hand in the air and got up with a look of disgust on his face.
The discussion ended with the rest of the group yelling 'pack up' and 'load 'em up' to the troops, and the commands were echoed throughout the camp. The privates, with only a second's notice, jumped to attention and began to pack up the camp.