For Thee it Screams
Posted By: Kaiyo no Hime<firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 26 January 2010, 10:07 pm
They called them hell jumpers, if they were in awe and nice.
It was a name and a title of honor and respect. Those who would give their lives just to enter the sacred battle.
Complete bad ass.
Crazy like a pack of foxes.
He had been proud to apply, and honored to join such a group of people. To them death was a constant joke that laughed along with them, was at their table eating dinner, was beside them as they trained, and even gave a final tug as they strapped into their sacred cocoons. They defined those who would give their lives, who freely gave their lives, in the fight.
To the fight.
For the fight.
He smiled at the memory of his mother; she had been sobbing, wiping her tears with the white handkerchief she always carried with her, when he had said goodbye. She didn't think she would ever see him, her precious little boy, again. He had wanted to reassure her, tell her that that wasn't true. But he had been raised to never lie to his mother. And he couldn't bring himself to start then.
It reminded him of some old fairy tale that he couldn't quite remember anymore
That's your mother's heart you're breaking. You're breaking your mother's heart.
"Getting hot in here guys," Ramirez called over the com.
Jumpy, chatty, little Ramirez. There was more spunk and fire power stuffed into her tiny form that should be allowed, or ever possible. A generation too late to be amongst the first Spartans, a generation too soon to be an engineer. Caught in the middle of this blasted war. Almost happy for it.
And she was right, as always. But that's why they also called them hell jumpers too, of course. The porcelain skin of the drop pod may have ensured they made it to the ground, fighting against an atmosphere that would so love to shred them and send them to the earth below, spiraling like little bits of red glitter and confetti, but it also baked them alive on the way down. Perfect little individual ovens. All that was missing was a cute pink kitten sticker and a little striped candle.
It was baking him alive now.
He would swear that he could hear the fire licking on the outside of the ceramic shell. Hellish tongues licking and seeking the gooey inside it contained, tasting and savoring the clay as it became brittle and black. Frightful demons demanding perfectly cooked sacrifice for the insanity they were committing. Elder gods warring for the human tribute they had long been denied.
They were too small for the machines to shoot down, too fast for the enemy to react. They were the crazies other units told horror stories of, toasted heroic stories about. There was not a person in a unit alive that didn't stare at them in awe when they walked by. They were the honored dead in the mess halls, too stupid with drink to know they were gone just quite yet.
The turbulence grew worse, shaking him like a lone kernel in a popcorn popper. Trying to burst him into a little white fluff. He had to grin at that; imagined himself a piece of the delicious treat.
Light on the butter, heavy on the salt.
A trickle of sweat slipped down his brow, coursing its way down the side of his neck. It itched where he couldn't reach, his whole body burned and stung. This was not his first jump, his first escapade as a piece of the salty treat, but that never stopped the nervous sting of dread.
It was so hot in that little white egg, so painful to just wait for the short eternity to end. This is what he hated most, this creeping, howling silence. Just waiting, supported in air by fate and destiny, waiting to see who won the game his life depended upon.
The planet below screamed as he came closer, as they all came closer, plummeting down to sting the surface like a mass of angry wasps.
Everything glower red for a moment when the shoot failed to open. No back up system, no emergency abort, no reset. Just a red light to silently, calmly, inform him that this had now become his coffin. Soon, it would dig his grave.
The eerie wail of the wind was a dirge for five seconds of remorse.
He had never lied to his mother.
He was proud of that.