Suicide no. 6: I Pledge Allegiance
–by Derek Alan Wilkinson
“Left, right, left!” The would-be soldiers jogged their way into twilight of yet another tiring and endless day. He only had three weeks left. And, unlike some of his company, he kept pace—always passing the physical. Always in tip-top shape.
Joey was made for the U.S. Marines.
He knew what to expect when he joined the Corp., and he wouldn’t let his sister’s untimely death get in the way of his graduation from what was already a grueling and gut-wrenching challenge—the completion of basic training. She shouldn’t have been dating that alcoholic prick in the first place. Leaving basic for her funeral wasn’t an option—he’d have to make time to grieve later.
And that was his first order of business, whenever he got leave: to kick the shit out of Adam Blakenship for wrecking his dad’s ’97 Porsche, and killing his kid sister. He’d beat the fuck out of Adam to the point of no return. Comatose, if he could walk away with a slap on the wrist. Spoiled little bastard couldn’t handle his alcohol to start with, and he always showed up to take Brittany out reeking of Vodka. Fuck him. Fuck the Blakenships, and their inheritance.
Fuck those rich and spoiled little bastards—those trust fund hippie pieces of shit.
“I don’t know, but I’ve been told!” This whole damned country has already been bought and sold whispered a sinister and appalling voice in the back of Joey’s head—a voice he tried to ignore before—that left-winged, liberal asshole with no guts about him. A voice begging to get out and tell the whole squad what Joey truly felt, if only sometimes.
But Joey was made for this way of life.
If so, why the voice? Why the inert feeling that something wasn’t right about everything Joey thought was right? And there wasn’t anything presentably acceptable about Adam’s vehemently democrat viewpoints; Joey had heard enough of his form of textbook liberalism whenever the little scrawny bastard came over for supper. He had this way about him—like the stupid, geeky excuse for a young man could muster enough guts to have an opinion about anything at all.
Yet, his opinions spewed every time the kid opened his mouth.
“Left, right, left!” Joey continued his jog to the barracks. Tomorrow, target practice, artillery class, and…rappelling.
So, there he was: completely harnessed in with a rope tied as tightly around his crotch as he could get it—like the drill sergeants always taught. And the usual sixty-five feet down a wooden, makeshift wall. The test wasn’t to see if you could rappel, but if you could face basic fears and follow commands accordingly.
“Spread your legs real wide, like you tell your girlfriend!” the drill sergeant joked. And he did.
But he let go of the rope until he hit bottom—never once letting his hands catch him. Just another fatality at basic.
One of the very, very few that had an accident and didn’t make it.
Officers in uniforms would inform his parents.
- Pledge Allegiance (flowersandbreezes.wordpress.com)
- DP Poem: “Pledge Allegiance”… One Nation Under God!!! (secretangelps911.wordpress.com)
- Daily Prompt: I Pledge Allegiance (mazhar641.wordpress.com)
- The Drill Sergeant: Friend or Foe? (military.answers.com)