Disclaimer: The characters and situations of the TV program "SPACE: Above and Beyond" are the creations of Glen Morgan and James Wong, Fox Broadcasting and Hard Eight Productions, and have been used without permission. No copyright infringement intended.
I run trough the stone landscape. No reason at all, just running. I have no idea why. I'm wearing my flight suit and I have my sidearm in my hand. Man, I'm tired. My breath hangs in the air. I hit my leg against a stone, but I keep on running. In my head I hear the Marine Corps hymn.
I stop. I remember this place. Mors…. The name gives me the creeps. I see the C3 tower and the rest of the 58th. Suddenly I'm in a foxhole.
"I'm so scared…I'm so scared"
Neil's voice comes trough the radio. I hear his fear, and agony. Shane is sitting next to me, holding my hand.
"NO!" I yell, fighting off the hand. I run out, towards the place where I know Neil is.
You can't run or hide
I hear the voice inside my head.
I remember the worst day in my childhood. I was sitting by the river when an AI came. I jumped out into the water and swam towards home. A policeman shot the Silicate just before he caught me. Back to the reality.
I hear crying. And I see Neil as a kid sitting on a field. He holds his arm.
"It's broken, man," he tells me.
I walk towards him. When I'm about two feet away from him he changes. The cute face of my little brother changes into a thing that I despise. A Chig. It looks at me.
Got you there, it informs me silently.
I take my K-bar out and cut over the Chigs throat. I've got green slime all over my hands. It scares me. Then I hear it again.
"I'm sorry…I'm so sorry ..."
The cries of my brother tear my guts out. I feel older. I feel changed. And I feel lost.
I run towards him. He is standing there, firing at the Chigs. I try to go and help him, but my feet are too heavy. I can't move.
"NEIL!" I yell. "Stay down, man!"
He looks at me. His eyes big.
"Semper Fi, Nathan," he says.
A light flicks trough the air.
Two women riding on golden horses. They stop next to Neil. One of them steps down and walks towards him. She takes him up, but he still lies against the wall. She's taking his soul.
I remember stories I've heard. Not to long ago. From Schjerven. About the Vikings. The girls were taking Neil's soul to Valhalla, were he would live with the heroes.
Odin…the high God over them all. Luke and…Frøya. It sound silly.
I watch as the women ride off, with Neil turning back to me. He's waving.
I just stand there.
Then my feet can move again and I run to my brother's body.
I take his body in my arms. My brother…my little brother…my best friend…dead. It's like we're drifting away. From Mors.
We're sitting on a rock and drifting out in space. I see Mars. And the face of Pags.
After a while I see Kelly. Her Hammerhead cockpit exploding.
Wang's face…and his battle-cry. I sit on a floor. In front of me I see Anne. She's standing there and…waiting for something. A Chig.
"Come on. What are you waiting for, bad boy? Kill me if you dare!" She yells.
The Chig walks towards her. Holding is long sabre.
A quick move, and Schjerven's right arm lies on the floor. Real blood running.
"Be bloody, Blood" she said between her teeth. "And leave West alone"
The Chig moves towards her and with a fast movement cuts off her head.
"NO! No. No. No!" I yell.
Then I look around. I see a bloody lump on the floor. Long, brown hair is the only thing that makes me sure that it's human. I look at the dogtags. 'Shane Vansen'. I turn when I hear a moan. On the wall I see a person hanging. I now I have seen that before. In my church back home. The picture of Jesus hanging on the cross, now it's Coop hanging there. I scream when I see blood on my hands. My fingers are gone and in my stomach I see…a long knife. Laughter. My own, sick laughter. I look at Anne's head, Shane's hair, Cooper's frame hanging up. In a corner I see Phousse…Beate and Marco. Hanging up like they were on Ceres.
My own voice. "What's going on here?"
"You shouldn't have to ask. You've been here before. Anytime you awake in the dark in a cold sweat -moments before, you were here" the Sergeant informs me.
Suddenly I'm in my bunk. I look around. A dream…a fucking nightmare. It was all it was. I jump down from my bunk and check on my squad. Shane's sleeping, Hawkes sleeping, Polo's snoring, Bertheussen's out with her boyfriend, Phousse sleeping and Schjerven is sitting on her bunk.
She looks at me.
"Nightmare?" she asks.
I nod, no need to lie to her.
"It happens often here," she tells me. Then she puts on her shoes and goes jogging.
I walk towards the showers. The warm water is comforting against my skin. I feel bad, lousy and sick. Afterwards I walk to the mirror. My long face, my gray eyes…I look older. Maybe it's the light. I walk to my bunk. In a hour it's back again. Back to fighting. As long is I don't dream. I close my eyes…and fell to sleep.