|The Outcomes of Strife
Author: hippiechick2112 PM
The end of the war is near. The last months of the 4077th overwhelm Captain Jeanie Morrison, who watches everything fall apart and then come back together for her in the postwar years. The third and last story in the series "This Forsaken War".Rated: Fiction T - English - Tragedy/Hurt/Comfort - Chapters: 40 - Words: 91,119 - Reviews: 41 - Favs: 2 - Updated: 12-08-10 - Published: 11-09-10 - Status: Complete - id: 6464062
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
The Outcomes of Strife
Note and Disclaimer: I don't own the character of M*A*S*H, but the character of Captain Jeanie Morrison – the main character of these stories – belongs to me, so if you want to use her, please message me with permission first. This is the third, and last, story of her tour in Korea and into some of the postwar years. Enjoy!
Journal of Jeanette K. Morrison
Captain, U.S. Army, M*A*S*H 4077th
September 1, 1952
I don't know how much hope I had in my heart until today.
At the beginning of this damned war, I was happy to be in a new place, but, at the same time, lonely because people were rude as hell to me. Then, I listened to reports of a war being over by Christmas and wished that I was assigned elsewhere – despite my security risk – and not home in Bloomington, Illinois, with my dysfunctional family. Then, December passed and the winter turned into spring. I fell in love, experienced rape and had a child. My child, my little baby girl, was sent to the States and my heart turned cold. Finally, when I thought things could not get worse, Henry Blake…my father-figure, my commanding officer…was discharged and, over the Sea of Japan, was shot down and killed.
It made my heart turned to total stone, taking too much time to thaw for new friends and even love. In order not to feel anything – to get through another O.R. session without breaking down, to function in a place far away from what I wanted to be home – I had to make myself steel against anything. I isolated myself. I watched my mind crawl into a corner, beating away every helping hand, and nearly went crazy with grief. I walked, joked, breathed, slept and ate. I drank, collapsed, tumbled and even puked. And yet, here I am, still here…alive.
God, and here I am, over two years in Korea, still broken down and beaten. I have done everything that my country has asked of me. I enlisted in their military to forget about the troubles I had at home. I traveled to where they wanted me to and have given up my life to serve them, even spying for them in a dangerous half of a country, divided when the last war before this was over.
Two years ago, they sent me to Korea, to work as a nurse and not as their post world-war spy in a divided Berlin. I was trained too well in the art of war and they had figured, hey, send a nurse, who used to be a spy, to work at her original profession. It's some idea, is it not? It made sense. I mean, I made no trouble and nobody knew my traveling name except if I made a mistake and was tortured as a prisoner. But, that was not possible, seeing how mobile this unit can be. So far, so good, Jeanie Morrison is not a prisoner of war and resides at the 4077th M*A*S*H.
Jesus, now that I have seen the countryside here and know war for what it truly is, I am disgusted. I have seen too much and have experienced it all. And I am tired of it. I don't want to be a spy anymore. I don't want to be a nurse anymore. I want to be me, Jeanie Morrison, a person who wants to be a mother to her daughter. I want to be the civilian I was promised to be and to raise my daughter. I miss her so much and only wish to see how much she's grown. My Shannon Cora, I want to see her again, my poor child in Boston, Massachusetts with a parental unit about to break apart once more.
It's been a long summer, I've noticed…another long year gone almost. A summer of many deaths, I saw, and it shocked me. It nearly killed me, mentally and physically, although I still continue to smile and laugh and pretend that nothing is going on.
Dammit, too many boys have been in that operating room. Just, lately…it's been bothering me. I've been going insane.
I stopped writing in the journal, putting the pen down before I threw it across the room. I couldn't think anymore about the feelings I've had for over two years now. It was too much to see on black and white pages, empty pages of a book Hawkeye had passed onto me (an unusual gift from a nurse, I believe, when they needed help with their heater again) when he saw how much letter-writing had made me feel better. He didn't need the large, empty book and just gave it to me, still unaware of how much I still hated writing.
Hell, I wrote letters when it suited me. I write a lot of them, sometimes ten pages per person when something big had happened or I was upset. However, I didn't really need a journal to achieve the same. It just reminds me of my feelings and it doesn't make a difference whether or not it's there or not. I'm here and not in the United States and that's that. I have to deal with it.
I sat back on my cot in the Swamp, thinking. Was this really so bad after all? I didn't think so, on second thought. I mean, I just wrote almost two pages of thoughts and feelings that I usually reserve for people in my letters, people who I love the most. Usually, it's been Lorraine Blake, Trapper John, my brother Dean (when he's out on the Front Lines and needs some company with my letters) and sometimes, my own mother (carefully, though), who has grown closer to me this way, despite everything done to me by her own hands. Sometimes, I'll leave something on Hawkeye's pillow when I can't see him or leave some report for Colonel Potter when something is bothering me and I can't see him right away.
Journal writing, though? For me? Hawkeye can't be serious! Dean would laugh, though, if he was here, knowing himself to be the writer and not I.
Oh, yes, Dean's been sent back to Munsan, where Daddy now is. My father is back on the Front Lines as a General, asking for the 43rd. Well, he also asked for Colonel Coner, back from Seoul, answering for the large numbers of dead men in his unit. Coner and Dean compete a lot for that command post and it scares me everyday I think about it. Coner has power that Dean doesn't, although Daddy is there to watch and comment about things, like how they should wait for the fire to cease before getting the dead bodies. One more time that Colonel Coner does a stupid stunt like that and he's going to be court marshaled. It so tingles my body and makes me happy to think about it!
"Hey, Jeanie, are you in there?"
I heard the voice of B.J. outside of the tent, the newly-crowned prankster of the 4077th. After pulling a prank on everybody in the camp, by himself even, Hawkeye and I gave up our titles and handed them to him…until we get back at him for it. There was much we are planning!
"Yeah, I'm here, B.J.," I called back as I put the journal under my cot for safe-keeping (from every person in the camp but the rats). "What's going on?"
"I passed by Margaret's tent and she asked me to ask you to come to her tent, snapping like a Venus Flytrap. She's a bit peeved, so be careful of that dragon."
I sighed and got up, putting my socks, shoes and jacket on. Jesus, Margaret had been calling me to her tent a lot lately. Other than teaching me how to take care of the nurses when she's gone, she talks about her husband, Colonel Donald Penobscott, and how much she loves and hates him. Usually, when she's in a good mood, she's in love. When she's in a bad mood, Donald has done something stupid. And Margaret likes to talk to me because I'm a good listener, I guess, and it makes me her feel like somebody believes her and is listening to her.
So, she's in a bad mood at the moment. Jesus…
I sighed. Let's see what Donald did this time…
"Sure, I'll be careful. I never know when she'll snap at me, too."
I walked out the door, meeting the tall surgeon near the sign posts, showing miles to go before we headed home…or even Tokyo, where we vacationed usually if Seoul wasn't an immediate open opinion.
B.J. and I were as silent as church mice (rats, here, I should say) as he escorted me to the Head Nurse's tent a little ways down the road from the Swamp. I didn't think he wanted to say anything that would cause his head to be rolled off of his shoulders from the woman herself, the angry power woman behind the nurses of the 4077th M*A*S*H. I kept the same way, knowing that to talk about Margaret near her tent was courting disaster.
"Good luck," was all B.J. said as we stopped in front of Margaret's tent.
"Yeah, I'll need it," I replied as I knocked, watching B.J. run and then disappear into Post-Op.