We rode back to Mother Base as soon as the house collapsed. Eventually, the rest of the Miller Corps companies came back. They all had success, so we celebrated. Everyone drinks booze for the first day of Usurp Heaven going off without a hitch. Due to the craziness that happened back in Southland, I kinda dislike drinking now. I just to stick to water and stick to leaning on a barrel, watching the soldiers party. They know how to get down, I love the fast-paced music. They probably dance and move like this because it'll be the last time for a while, or even at all. I see my team, dancing. Fisher is moving with another buff woman, He's smile is so huge. I can't see Sera anymore, weird. Kyle sits next to me, drinking water. "While I'm not a fan of my soldiers getting drunk, It's a good morale boost to party," He starts with.
I turn to face him once I got done studying the partygoers. "Why? They're just enjoying themselves."
"Yeah, sure. Next thing you know this becomes a habit. Humans are creatures of habit. Once you got something you enjoy in your system, they'll use it over and over."
"You don't trust your own people?"
Kyle scoffs. "I don't trust anyone, Dopeman." He then stands and pats my back. "Good job out there today. I'll have something planned for tomorrow." He walks away, leaving me to sip my water alone.
Sera comes up to me, her hand outstretched. The light makes her look nice, I must admit. "Hey, Dopeman. Let's dance."
I laugh. "Just a warning, I can't dance."
The song changed to a low-fi tune. I take her hand and we start to slow dance. I hold her tight, I can feel her heartbeat slowly, my check rests on her head. I smell her beautiful blonde hair. It smells of something familiar, like something I’ve been missing. It’s luring me. We sway from side to side, as the lights shine. It felt like it was just us, alone. As her head was set on my chest, she whispers something. "What was she like?"
"Who?" I whisper back.
"Dani. What was she like?"
"Dani... She was my savior. She helped me see something I couldn't realize without her help. She would pick me up when I was down and she would remind me I'm more than a tool."
"What did you do in the past?"
I sigh slowly. "I sold drugs. Ruined my community. It's hard to forgive yourself when you've done that. Especially when you're only known as the man who supplied them."
Sera stops me and looks up, looking at me straight in the eyes. "You need to. You can't keep trying to hurt yourself to protect us because you feel guilty for what happened all those years ago. You're a new man."
I start to tear up. "I can't. I killed all those people and profited from them. I was only known as that. As the Dopeman. She reminded me who I was. I can't remember now. Who am I, Sera? Who the hell am I?”
She placed her warm hands on my cheeks and wiped my tears away with her thumbs. "How about I remember for you?"
We softly placed our foreheads together, as I cry. My emotions rush out like a broken water pipe. She comforted me for the rest of the party. While she invited me to her tent, I denied the offer. It didn't feel right. I went to sleep in my own tent.
Tann woke me up the next morning. Serena looked like she was gonna hurt the Major, so I made a hand signal to calm her down. "Morning, Dopeman. Today, you and I are going to do our own mission."
I sit up to get my boots on. " What? Why us? Why not my team?"
Kyle shrugs. "I want to see how you work in person."
"What aren't you telling me, Major?"
"Nothing. We leave in five." He leaves suddenly. God, This gonna be a pain.
Five minutes later, we're riding off to the target. Kyle clears his throat. "Trastornos got a drug den over here. It's also a common meeting place. Just like yesterday, clean house."
I nod as we reach the cliff overlooking the place. I study the Trastornos. They've got simple leather armor on. Their faces are tattoed to the face, based on ranked it seems. The more tattoos they have, the more respected they are. They bow to the heavily tattoed one as one enters in. Kyle taps my shoulder as he as the ropes set up. We start rappeling down, walking over to the side of the den soon. It looks to be the remains of a church. As I peek inside one of the broken windows, it hits me: This is a place of worship, not a drug den. As I tun to warn Kyle, He already has a pipe bomb set. "Move!" He yells as he throws it. I dive out of the way as the church destroys one side of the wall, causing the building to collapse. Kyle takes his assault rife and double taps the bodies as he steps into the rubble of the church.
"This is what you hid from me? This was a place where they worshipped their gods!" I yelled, stepping in the rubble.
"I knew you couldn't do it. The rest of the companies had important stuff to do, so this fell to your team naturally. I had a plan B if you couldn't barge in there like you usually would."
I kick a piece of the destroyed wall out of frustration.
War. What is it good for?