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Gundam Wing World: Fanfics - Old Soldier

Old Soldier
By: Godshatter

(I don't own Gundam Wing!)


Thunder. It booms in the distance and rolls over the hills, shaking the earth in its wake. The sky shattered by lightning, the air charged with confrontation. Two titans clash in battle. Fueled by their fury they tear a path of destruction leaving nothing in the dust that settles behind them. Death roams these once peaceful and fertile lands harvesting souls as though they were wheat before the thresher. The scene shimmers and splits down the center only to blow away like dust from the earth. A consciousness stirs and awakens from its slumber as the dream world fades into the torment of reality.

In the trenches, a man about the age of 50 stirs, the crack of rifle fire shocks him out of his stupor as reality grabs him and pulls him to the present.

A tattered mob could be seen in the distance charging the man’s position. They ran, or staggered rather towards the trench only to be cut down by blazing machinegun fire. Wheat before the thresher.

“SERGEANT!” yelled a soldier to the man’s left. “Why aren’t we getting reinforced? We are going to run out of .50 ammo soon and we’re already out of ri-” The youth was silenced as a bullet shattered his skull and blew his brains out the back of his head, only to dribble down the backside of his helmet.

The man swore a complex oath under his breath and rolled sideways so that he could take over the fallen soldiers machine gun position. The body of the youth now lay doubled over the machine gun only to be roughly shoved down to the bottom of the trench. A soldier’s burial.

Adrenaline surged through him as he was caught up in the moment. Another charge was forming up at the far end of the field as word swept through the lines of another assault.

The man’s calm, calculating gaze took in the sight before him. Smoke broiled out of the trenches and the shell craters giving the scene a smoldering, hellish look. Bodies lay everywhere strewn in all contortions and positions. The fields were laced with barb wire and anti tank “spider” wire as the infantry called it: super dense aluminum/nickel alloy which was stronger than spider’s silk of the same diameter and could stop a tank dead in its tracks.

As the enemy spilled over the defense line his machine gun grew white hot as he piteously emptied magazine after magazine into the surging human waves before him. While his body count mounted the enemy forces dwindled to nothing more than pockets of resistance here and there. He felt a strange yet familiar calm settle upon him. He no longer cared if he died; the only thing that was important was his “mission”. His “mission” was to hold the line and repel all attacking forces.

Something snapped inside his head. He grabbed the magazine and yanked it out of the gun and began to quickly disassemble the weapon. The private in the foxhole with him looked at him questionably for a second but after a moment realized what his sergeant was about to do. The private began to gather their unspent grenades and machine gun magazines and stuffed them into a pack as the sergeant took apart the machinegun.

The pair leapt out of the hole as a mortar shell landed where they had just been. The man not looking back continued his stooped over dash across “no man’s land”, the place in between both sides but also under the artillery umbrella of both forces.

The young private looked back at his previous position. Only a moment’s hesitation was enough for a bullet to find him. He collapsed onto the ground, blood flowing form an open neck wound.

The old sergeant seeing this shuffled back over to where the youth lay and stripped him of his equipment, his task at hand now even more difficult without the aid of an extra pair of hands.

The man picked up the youth’s pack along with his own and using a piece of board wood that he had found along with a length of rope he dragged the heavy machine gun forward.

Once he reached an acceptable location, one with ample natural (what little was left) coverage he laid down his packs and pulled out a rusty looking pack shovel and dug in to the soft earth, now muddied from the rains.

As he fortified his position, it seemed that the sky had suddenly opened up to allow a cascade of fire through the clouds to burst upon the ground and cook it to a cinder.

The shells detonated all around him in groups both large and small. One group landed not 40 feet from the hole he was digging. The concussions from these explosions racked his skull and threatened to shatter his consciousness into a thousand pieces. Through this bombardment the man persevered and finished his foxhole and set the machine gun up and prepared for the next assault.

As his comrades looked on in wonder and confusion at their leader’s seemingly rash decision realization dawned on them: he had chosen his location not because of the shielding it offered from enemy fire (little though there was) but for a specific tactical advantage. When the enemy charged they would not be expecting a gunner’s nest so far out from their main line and would be sent reeling in confusion, not only splitting their men into more manageable, smaller groups but would also send a shock of panic through them.

In his “bunker” the man pulled out a beaten and dented canteen and took a long swig of dirty water, moistening his parched lips he set his face in grim determination. “There is no advantage to attack now, the enemy will wait until a strategic opportunity presents itself. I have time to rest”, and with that the man leaned back against the far wall of the hole and propped his head against the youths pack, canteen in hand and dozed. Neither awake nor so asleep that he could not notice what was going on in the war as it raged about him.

War. Nothing but damn wars.

All my life I have done nothing but fight and train. At least that’s how it was until she came along. Like a light from a goddess she flew into my cage and cast it in her soft glow. She saved me from my world of darkness and showed me how to live again, I didn’t even know that I had forgotten how to.

Then another war came and I went off to fight.

She tried to stop me at first but eventually came to realize she could not convince me not to go. In the end she gave up. I’ll never forget the look on her face that night.

After we had argued for a time she held her hand up to silence me. Though she said not a single word her face spoke volumes. I had won.

She walked over to me and wrapped her arms gently around my neck and leaned her head on my shoulder, shaking slightly every so often. It took me a moment to realize she was crying. I reached down to embrace her, trying to calm her fears.

After a few minutes she gently shoved herself away from me. Startled I just stared at her, dumbfounded.

She looked up at me and through tear streaked eyes she spoke. “I know that I cant soften your warriors spirit, its been engrained in you since you were a child. So, I wont even bother. I love you, never forget that, but I just can’t contend with this. Every time you go out to fight I feel like I will never see you again. If I lose you my heart will be broken, I don’t think I could live like that. So I am going to let you go”

I couldn’t believe I was hearing this. As I opened my mouth to speak she walked over to me and placed her index finger on my lips. Startled, I didn’t say anything, I just stared down at her. Knowing that this would be the last time I would see her I tried to burn her image into my mind. Her sea blue eyes, her honey colored hair. I drink her with my eyes.

She gave me a small smile and leaned up to kiss me on my mouth. I thought I was going to lose it when she did that.

It only lasted a moment.

And then she was gone. She ran upstairs in a whirl of motion, leaving me speechless and empty. I felt like I had lost half my soul; that is if I ever had one to begin with. After all, wasn’t I no more than a heartless, soulless killing machine? A tool rather than a man?

I left for space the next day.

She was assassinated that afternoon.

I remember collapsing in my quarters after I heard the news. Shaking with rage I saw red. Everything was red. My bunkmate clamored out of the shower to see what was the matter.

“Captain, are you alright? What the hell is go-” I silenced him with my coldest glare possible. After a moment he asked, “What’s wrong with your eyes sir?”

“What, haven’t you ever seen a grown man cry before?” I snapped at the junior officer.

“W-well, n-n-no sir, its not that. Its just that… that your tears… they’re blood”, he stated.

Blood? My tears were… blood?

That’s when the announcement came.

“Today, at 2:37 Eastern Standard time the IF’s (International Federation) Chief Representative, Ms. Dorlin, was assassinated by sniper fire at her 19th birthday party held in the posh five star hotel San Salvador in southern Ukraine. In the wake of this earth-shattering event the key nations of the IF have split up and formed their own factions based on the post cold war alliances in the year 1991 B.C.Y (Before Colony Year). The countries once members of the old NATO organization have remained loyal to the IF. Those nations once members of the “New Iron Curtain” Movement, more commonly known as the Russian Federation, have gone on full alert and are preparing for war Earthside. All forces loyal to the IF have been ordered landside to defend their perspective nations in the foreseen conflict with the Russian Federation.”

That was when I passed out. I don’t even remember the trip back.

Within 36 hours of her death mankind was only a shadow of its former self. All the Earth’s nations that had nuclear capabilities entered into a full-scale nuclear war. Within 24 hours the population of the Earth was reduced by two thirds. The world’s technology level was set back 300 years due to the massive EMPs (Electro Magnetic Pulse) generated by the nuclear weapons.

You would think we would learn after an event such as this.

We didn’t.

After only 18 years of peace, reconciliation, and the occasional border skirmish a new power emerged: the UNSR, or the Unified Nations of the Soviet Republic. Within 4 months they had taken over all of Asia and half of Europe in a classic “Blitzkrieg” style attack. The New NATO landed at Dunkirk and pushed back the Russians to establish a beachhead. Eventually the line stabilized about 150 km into France.

I resigned my commission as Captain and joined the regular army. Eventually they wanted to promote me to Colonel but I refused every time, I wanted to be where the fighting was so that I could fight for myself and for her memory.

That was 13 years ago.

In that time we have managed to drive the Russians back to the Rhine River. It would have happened much sooner but because the EMP knocked out all industry and technology both sides had to revert back to World War One era weapons and technology. We still have to use water-cooled machine guns that weigh 110lbs for Christ sakes.

That was 4 years ago.

Now look where I am: fighting in the same miserable trench for two and a half years.

The booming of the artillery begins to slacken. The sudden absence of the sounds of war startles the old man from his revere. Noticing that it is dark now the man pulls out his night vision goggles. At least some technology survived. Thought the sergeant.

The field has become ominously quiet, like the calm before the storm.

Kneeling down the man loads a magazine into the machine gun and pulls back the cocking lever in preparation for the onslaught to come.

Nothing comes. Confused the man looks around the battlefield and sees his men also looking around confusedly. The man sits back in his foxhole, confident that the enemy will come and that he had correctly gauged their actions. He looked out expectantly.

Nothing. Not even the sounds of the night can be heard as a gentle wind blows coldly down from the mountains.

Then he saw it. In the distance silhouetted by the moonlight stood a black figure. It looked like some sort of giant man but the proportions were all wrong. The body and arms were to thick and its eyes burned red like hellfire. This was not a man but a beast.

Realization struck him like a hammer blow. He was staring at the very thing that haunted his nightmares and consumed his every waking thought. The cold, ever-calculating eyes of a mobile doll stared back at him.

Rage filled him as he stared on, slack jawed and dumbfounded. “Those idiots! Don’t they know those were the very thing that started this all!” screamed the man to himself.

The machine pivoted on its right foot and brought to bear its vacuum-particle cannon. A curious glow seemed to emanate from the gaping mouth of the cannon. Then, with the golden finger of dawn it reached out and touched him, wrenching his soul from its battered shell of a corpse.

“Gaah!” screamed the soldier as he was jolted awake. He looked around and noticed it was still day. He looked to the place where the mobile suit had stood but there was nothing but shell craters and barbwire.

“A dream, it was only a dream.” The soldier said as the reassuring sound of war resumed in full fervor.

The short reprieve from the sounds of war was brief, just long enough to restock much needed stores of ammunition, load another magazine into the machineguns and let the howitzers cool before their riffling melted.

That was when it came, a full charge of what looked like a million men to the old sergeant.

His heart pounding in his chest he felt adrenaline surge through him, giving him renewed strength and determination. The ground rocked with detonation of the shells, poison gas roiling from their craters.

The soldier seeing this produced his mask and put it on hurriedly while he loaded his machinegun and stacked spare magazines in easily accessible positions so he wouldn’t have to waste time hunting for them while under assault.

With shaking hands he unscrewed the cap to his canteen, dropping the lid twice, and took a long swig of the foul water. It wasn’t much but it was enough to restore some of his energy and courage.

In the midst of the bombardment he realized that he had made a fatal error in his decision for his position. He was under the enemy’s artillery umbrella and after the first charge his position would be reported to the enemy gunners and they would erase him from the field. After the first attack I’m gonna have to either retreat back to the lines or find another position out here. If I go back to the lines then this little maneuver of mine would be for naught, if I find another position I will have to keep up this “leap frog” tactic until I die or can get out of range but still be affective. Neither choice seemed very appealing under any condition.

He stared down the shallow slope to the tidal wave of men about to come crashing into him. Running like madmen they were upon him. The ground bucking underneath him from the shells he could barley stand up to aim his weapon. Concussions from the shells repeatedly made him duck and cover, often knocking him into the backside wall of his foxhole.

The screams of shells as they sliced through the air overhead mixed with those of the men on the ground and swirled into one deafening roar that filled his ears and pierced his brain.

The title wave of men sweeping up the hill was met by the molten fire of his machine gun as the soldier tried in vein to ebb the flow of men. It bit into their lines but had the equivalent damage of gnat spit on a hot iron.

Small explosions from bullet impacts danced about him as he sat alone in his hole in the earth. The smell of spent gunpowder burnt his nostrils and smoke blackened his features as he desperately tried to defend his little outpost of hell.

The man grimaced as he noticed that he would be out of ammunition in a very short amount of time. Damn, there’s more of them then I thought. I am going to have to return to the lines for additional ammunition and support. Hmm, if I can just hold out for a few more minutes I’m sure I could cause enough damage and confusion so that I can make it back to the trench. The chance of survival is extremely low but that’s never stopped me before.

He heard the report of a gun go off right next to his ear and felt a stabbing pain on the left side of his head. Blood began to flow down his forehead and got into his eyes, blurring his vision. The man collapsed still holding on to the grip of the machinegun, his knuckles bone white.

As he came to he noticed he was looking strait down the barrel of a .357 magnum. Not good thought the old man as he ran his options through his mind. Then he heard a shot and his would-be executioner collapsed in a heap before the soldier.

He looked back and saw the glint of a scope catch the sun. The soldier smiled. So they have my back after all.

The man began to hurriedly stash his equipment into the to two sacks and was about to bend down to grab the machine gun when he realized that there was no way he could carry it. “I’ll travel faster too if I only carry one pack. If I leave the gun and unspent ammunition and Shane’s gear here and only carry my equipment and both of our rations I should be able to make it back.” “Alright, here I go!” Popping his head up to look around the man didn’t see any immediate danger. He crouched back down into the hole, counted to 3 and leaped out of the hole and began his mad dash across no man’s land.

As he ran he could hear the screaming of shells as they hurtled in to obliterate the position he once occupied. The explosions seemed to be distant at first but he realized they were beginning to catch up with him. The man ran until he heard his blood pounding in his ears and his muscles pumped battery acid.

Pieces of Gundanium were wrenched from Zero as it plummeted earthward in a crimson blaze of fire, the drive section of Libra falling behind it. Zero leveled its massive Buster Rifle as the mecha rocked and shuttered in the torrent of reentry.

Inside the cockpit Heero fought with the controls as Zero fell through the atmosphere. “I will”, the joystick slipped from his sweaty palm but was snatched back in time to realign the mobile suit with the Libra section block. “I will”, he wrestled with the controls in order to get a positive lock on as he was flung about the cockpit like a rag doll. “I will”, the targeting curser flared all over the cockpit. “I WILL SURVIVE!” screamed Heero defiantly as he pulled the trigger just as the targeting curser became red.

The scene before the man exploded in bright white flashes, shocking him back to the present. As the memory was fading he saw a small abandoned bunker to his left and dove into it just as a shell detonated behind him sending up a shower of rocks and dirt.

Inside the bunker the man unshouldered his pack and sat down, canteen in hand, and leaned his head against the wall. Looking around he noticed that the structure was rather small, probably not meant for more than 4 or 5 men. It was sturdy however and kept him safe from the bombardment overhead.

As he scanned the room a small glint in the back corner caught his eye. The old man slowly stood up and limped over to the object. “Hmm, I must have sprained my ankle while I was running, have to take a look at that latter” whispered the man to himself.”

What he found in the corner was a welcome sight. There lay an unused Glock 9mm pistol still in its leather casing along with a box of ammunition. “Well, not at least I’m not unarmed now” said the man icily as he hobbled back to where he had been sitting and slouched down against the wall and closed his eyes.

The droning of the sounds of war began to slacken in the background, slowly at first, so slowly in fact that the man did not even notice it at first. Eventually the sound stopped altogether. Nothing could be heard except for a low breeze as it drifted by the opening of the bunker.

The absolute lack of noise made the soldier extremely nervous. He would mentally jump at every noise, no matter how great. Twice he spun around only to level his gun at a squirrel. “Dammit Heero get a hold of yourself. They are probably just preparing for another charge like the last time this happened. Remember?” Realizing how crazy he must have sounded talking to himself like that the soldier blushed slightly and sat back down against the wall.

Some time latter he heard the snapping of a twig and the crunching of leaves. The man jumped up and ran over to crouch at the entrance, peering around the corner of the bunker. There he saw a man dressed in the rust colored uniform of the Russian Federation. The soldier steadied his pistol against the corner of the bunker and fired 3 quick rounds at the Russian, killing the man with a shot to the heart. The soldier jumped up and ran to the body, grabbed it, and hauled it up onto his shoulders and carried back to his bunker. Setting the man down in the back he stripped him of his weapon and ammunition. This small task done the man went back to his spot at the wall and sat down again, this time however he kept his eyes open.

A short while latter he heard the snapping of twigs again, this time though it was coming from the other direction. It’s probably one of mine, but I should still be on guard. No need to die because of foolish assumptions. And with that the man crouched in the back of the bunker awaiting his visitor.

A young corporal emerged from the foliage and was headed in the direction of the bunker. “Sergeant Yuy! Sergeant Yuy are you out here?” shouted the youth. As he entered the bunker he noticed a strange shadow in the back, as he got closer the shadow seemed to ripple and then he felt an arm about his neck and a hand over his mouth.

“What in the Hell do you think you are doing corporal?” spat the sergeant vehemently. “You trying to get yourself shot or something? You should know better than to wonder around these woods screamin your head off. Had I been the enemy you would be dead, you hear me DEAD!” The sergeant let got of the youth and roughly shoved him out of his way.

“Sarge what are you talking about? The war is OVER, no one is going to shoot at us.” As he said this he looked over at the dead Russian, blood still flowed freely from his open head and chest wounds. Looking back at his sergeant the youth eyed him curiously. “Its alright sergeant, you didn’t know the war was over.”

But as he said that the old soldier wasn’t listening. He was lost in his own thoughts.

Another war. I’ve survived yet another war. She couldn’t even survive her own birthday party yet I stand here alone and alive.

As these thoughts floated around in his mind the memory of him in Zero’s cockpit flashed before him again.

“I WILL SURVIVE!” screamed Heero as the targeting cursor flared red.


“Why what sergeant?”

“Nothing, just lead me back to base”

They walked back in silence as a gentle rain began to fall from a blackened sky.

*~ Owari ~*