Feb 01
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Lieutenant Derring: The Soldier who was Always at War


“Lieutenant! Lieutenant! Wake up!” A man screamed. 

Derring’s surroundings gradually came into view. Gunfire pounded and popped everywhere. Men in camo U.S. uniforms kneeled in cover and shot at the gunfire, praying to God that they wouldn’t die, though their prayer would not be answered. The American men began viciously dropping to the ground, blood spilling out of the bullet holes in them. Derring slowly remembered what was going on. He had an immensely painful bullet hole in his leg, making it difficult to focus.

“Medic! I need a medic for Lieutenant Derring!” The man yelled as he swiftly began firing at the enemy. A man rushed over carrying a small white bag. He slid to the ground and began foraging through the white bag. He whipped out the bandages and promptly began wrapping the Lieutenant’s leg. The medic hurriedly lifted Lieutenant Derring and hoisted him over his shoulder. The blood rushed to his head as the medic dashed away. Derring’s vision deliberately faded. His ears were ringing, wailing into his head.

He awoke to the sound of an engine. He swiftly lifted his head and almost passed out again. His leg was concealed completely in bandages. The bandages were stained with blood, dripping onto the floor of the transport truck. His brain was out of control and not cooperating with him. He deliberately closed his eyes, wanting the scorching pain in his leg to go away. It was not going to go away. As the truck advanced, he drifted away. He awoke again, trying to take control of his senses. His memories were murky, making it laborious to remember where he was and why he was here. He laid in on a stiff cot with a blanket that could fit only over his legs spread out on him. He lay there, staring at the shadows of people walking by his minuscule, cramped tent. He finally began dragging himself off the cot. He ripped the blanket off, noticing the new bandages concealing his leg. He sat up, shook his head to wake himself up, and slowly and cautiously pulled himself off the cot. He stood for a second before collapsing on the ground. His leg seared and burned as he attempted to lift his body. No one would come to aid him, even if he hollered in pain. 

He became helpless, the shadows still fleeting by. Time was stagnant. He instantly looked to his right after noticing the shadow of a man running in the corner of his eye. Was that his help? The young man rushed into the tent. “Could’ve taken you long enough,” Derring remarked. The man chuckled and crouched down to assist the Lieutenant. The man hoisted Derring up and situated the Lieutenant gently in his cot. “You tried to get up, didn’t you.” The man remarked jokingly. “Yes, I did,” Derring answered as he stared up at the top of the tent. The young man crouched down, making it effortless to make out the small details of his face. He looked fatigued and saddened. He resembled a man who had just lost many of his friends and family. “What’s your name?” Derring questioned. “My name is John Wilbanks.” He responded hesitantly. “I’m Nathaniel Derring or Nate for short.” The Lieutenant commented. The men shook hands. “Well, I have somewhere to be. I’ll see you around Nate.” John told Nate. John promptly ran out of the tent. Nate watched as the shadow of John vanished on the tent wall. Nate drifted off into sleep.


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