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"Man, there's a lot of noise coming from there" I said as Ashley and I walked home after work, referring to the place where the guys were training.

"I know" she said looking concerned "Doesn't exactly sound safe"

We got to the apartment building and went upstairs to our flat.

"Oh wow!" I said when I got to the door. There on the floor was a beautifully wrapped gift for me. I picked it up and read the card.

Hey Mary-Kate,
It's not much. But, I hope you like it.

Inside was a beautiful red Rose.

"Wow" Ashley said looking at it "Someone's got a crush"


We were all walking back to the main building tired, hungry and sore. We had successfully rescued the 'hostage' and were clearing the village when the hostage herself stole a gun and 'killed' three men befor being shot herself. I had the honor of shooting the hostage first. Out of twenty people, only eight walked back 'alive'. Gibson waited for us at the main building.

"Excellent job men." He said with a smile.

"You're happy that we lost so many? It looks to me like we got massacred." I said.

This mission was designed in the worst case scenario in mind. Everything was designed to go wrong, but you pulled out of it with quick thinking. You all passed the course and are now soldiers." He explained. "Private Matt." he said.

"Sir!" Matt said.

"Because of your quick thinking and deviation of your orders to accomplish the mission, I am giving you a battlefield promotion to Private 1st class." He said. All new recruits were 2nd class privates. 1st class private is the second-in-command rank.

"Sir!" He said proudly.

We all applauded him and cheered. He deserved it after what he did in the simulation.

"Dis-missed!" Gibson said.

We all started the ride home.


"Well, you look rather happy" I said hugging Matt.

"I am" He said

"What happened?"

"I got promoted!" He said proudly.

"Congrats!" I said and gave him a kiss.

"We had a full day of combat simulation." Brett informed us. "It's as tough as I expected." He then he said as if speaking to himself. "The things I do for MK..."

"What was that?" Mary-Kate said.

"Huh? Didn't say anything." Brett said. He walked off towards the fridge to get a drink.

Mary-Kate rolled her eyes and sat on the couch with a sigh.

"What's this?" Brett asked, spotting the rose for the first time.

He started reading the card that was left by the rose. Mary-Kate leaped up and tried to take it away. Brett had no problem keeping it from her since he was taller than she was.

"Dear Mary-Kate," he mumbled the rest of the letter, "Who's Ryan?"

"None of your business" She said finally snatching the card from him.

Matt and I smiled at each other, it looked like a fight was coming, they were always entertaining.

"I think it is my business!"

"I think it isn't!"

"Your parents would want me to keep an eye on you since they aren't here!"

"Get over yourself! You are not my baby-sitter!"

"How long have you known him?"


"How long have you known him?" He asked me. "A day and a half?? He's already sending you roses! Isn't that weird to you?"

"It's not like I asked for it! It was a gift!" I said in defense.

"That's a pretty odd gift from a guy you never met!" He said.

"You sound like you're jealous!" Mary-Kate said.

"What?" he roared "I am SOOOOOOO not jealous!"

"Could have fooled me!"

"Well, this Ryan guy sure has!"

"I NEVER WANT TO TALK TO YOU AGAIN!" I screamed then ran outside slamming the door behind me.

Chapter 17

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