Unfinished Business

He was on his way back to his quarters, tired, dirty and fresh from a mission when he stopped cold in his tracks as his eyes took in the scene before him; there on the path outside his building was Zeke Anderson—HIS Zeke Anderson—the only man in his unit—the only man in this entire god forsaken country for that matter—that called Lt. Myron Goldman friend. The LT saw Zeke before Zeke saw Myron, so he waited a long minute before he proceeded to his hootch. At first he was elated that Zeke was back, a faint smile flashing across his face, but suddenly disappearing as the reality of the truth hit him full force—Zeke was back. Zeke could be killed. Just like Alex. And he might not be able to do anything about it.

"Hey, LT—was lookin' for ya—", the sergeant started.

LT brushed by his friend and climbed the stairs into his room. Zeke watched, confused by Goldman's feigned disinterest. He had come half way around the world to be with this man—half way around the world to make sure he was okay. "Unfinished business" he had called it. And it was…but he surely didn't expect this kind of welcome.

He cautiously climbed the steps and knocked on the door.

From the depths of the LT's quarters came a muffled "Come".

Well, at least he was invited in.

Zeke slowly entered the dimly lit room. He quickly scanned the messy abode, taking note of the dirty fatigues and cigarette butts that littered the room

"LT—", he ventured again….

Myron dropped his rifle and ammo belt on his rack and lowered his tired body sloppily onto the chair next to his desk. He slumped over, balancing his elbows on his knees and held his head in his hands.

"Zeke, I can't do this. I…..just can't."

Zeke saw the anguish his friend was going thru, and for the first time it occurred to him as to why.

In a voice filled with pain and regret, the LT finally let go of what had been haunting him for so long.

"I can't…loose you too. There would be nothing left—"

Zeke took hold of the other chair—his chair—and turning it around backwards he sat and faced the grieving man before him.

After a long silence Zeke figured he had nothing to loose.

"Well, Lt, the way I see it, you don't stand a chance here without me, and to be honest with ya, I don't stand a chance without you. My whole life I've never belonged to anyone, not even my wife Carol, but LT- I BELONG here—and I belong here with you. And with all due respect, Sir, if I go, I'm taking you with me."

Myron looked up at the big man in front of him. As he starred into Zeke's deep blue eyes, he couldn't help but see the mischief dancing within. The young lieutenant slowly straightened his stiff back, ran his hands thru is dirty hair and sighed a huge, liberating sigh.

"We can do this, LT. It's unfinished business and we can do this. You with me?" Zeke asked, gently nudging his CO's arm. Myron let out a relief-filled laugh and rubbed his tired eyes. Shaking his head, he smiled for the first time in days, a glimmer of hope surging back into his exhausted and weary soul. He would forever be grateful for this man—this gift-he'd been given.

"To hell and back, Sergeant. To hell and back."