Episode 1
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Submitted By Lamp on 12/09/30
CC Fan Fic Project, Lamp, Documents 

The truck I was in felt like an odd combination of cutting-edge and obsolete. The shape it resembled an old WW2 covered truck, including the bed for transporting soldiers (with makeshift wooden doors attached to the back end) which I was riding in alone. A few patches of rust sprung up along the hood, and the drivetrain felt like it was falling apart. However the driver's cabin and the bed was covered in grey steel armor with slits for firing guns on the side, back, and front (in replacement of a full window which the driver wouldn't stop complaining about. The engine had been swapped out with a new, heavy engine capable of hauling the military vehicle to about 30 KPH; slow, but fast enough that each rock we went over caused me to go an inch closer to the sky. It was the makeshift vehicle we were dealing with at this point: resources were scarce, as well as the factories to process them.
     Through the gun slits I could barely make out through the darkness of night that we were driving through a light forest or wood along a dirt path, guessing to the air base that I was to receive my mission brief at. There really wasn't much to do on the way there and lying down was out of the option, so I just thought. The mission came to my mind a few times, sure. Why they had called a rather unimportant warrant officer trained in vehicles we no longer had to the middle of nowhere. Why they had sent an armored car with a escort of two repurposed civilian cars with machine guns attached to the roof-clunkers we called them, for the bumpy ride they gave passengers-to pick me up. Why they denied any information on what my mission was going to be, a procedure extremely uncommon in the corps. These thoughts all came in my mind, but I didn't contemplate them much. No, I thought about how this war had come to this.
     The war started ninety years ago over some political incident no one other than those in the government knows about anymore. As normally safe boarders were turned into DMZs citizens either found themselves serving their country or running to what neutral countries were left. The fear of invasion crippled the economy of the world and production of goods came to an almost complete stop. In an effort to salvage what was left of their nations, the countries who could afford it invested in cutting-edge defensive fortifications (even including active missile centers for tracking and shooting down nuclear missiles) around small areas of land and turned them into an on-demand resource production and R & D center, the only safe havens left. From there a country could build an army over the course of a year to send it into the decimated countryside to attack another army or annex useless territory, never being strong enough to do something important to the war effort.
     I was drafted in to mandatory military service when I moved my family to these "castles", as they were called. On agreement that they would keep my mother, father & wife safe I was to serve for 10 years; pretty much a death sentence. I was deployed into a division just being formed, and I got my training on the job in one of only four tanks at their disposal. After a year of building up our forces we left to capture a hill that would be a great position for an anti-aircraft gun. We got the hill, but we lost 80% of our numbers and had to fall back to the castle with an attack by another nation. I was given an award for "courageous action on the field" they called it, which more likely meant that I was the only one who brought a tank back. Another company ended up inheriting the tank and lost it just days after deploying, and they had me working as a police officer for 4 months before they sent this truck to collect me.
     Now it's been a week traveling through what looks to be a heavily forested area not yet touched by the conflict. You get those sometimes; if land isn't decided to be valuable, it remains untouched. We stopped twice a day for bland meals stored in the clunkers, but otherwise I was kept in the back of the truck. Once I annoyed the driver enough with questions that he slid me an old novel through the cabin's back gun slit and told me to shut up. It was a bad book, but I must have read it five times before ripping it apart and using it as a pillow. It was horrible bedding even compared to the regular military bunks, but it was what I was dealing with on this ride to nowhere.
     Just as my thoughts were turning towards how crappy this was turning out for me, the truck stopped.
"Get out," the driver said.

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