20 Years Later
Over eighty recruits sat on bleachers, each wearing the American Army's ACU Digital combat battle dress uniforms. Most of them are young Corporals and Sergeants. They sat in the bleachers within the large empty field of Fort Bragg, North Carolina. They chatted amongst themselves before an officer approached them.
"Eyes on me!" the officer shouted.
This officer was the 'nameless-Captain' from the Assessment and Selection class twenty years ago, only he was now a 'nameless-Colonel.' Just like he always did, he wore thick Oakley sunglasses and his nametapes here removed. The recruits turned and stared at the officer before them. Immediately, they all realized how scary this man was. Behind this Colonel were several Sergeants wearing the same uniform.
"Welcome, gentlemen, to the Special Forces Assessment and Selection Course," the Colonel-with-no-name announced. "You men are the unlucky chosen ones to participate in this course. I don't care how much you have prepared yourself over many years, This program has a failure ratio of well over 80 percent. It would not surprise me if none of make it!" the recruits showed looks of fear upon hearing that comment. "Now for the bad news. In the next 24 days, you will be challenged beyond human limits mentally and physically. We will break you down and make you cry. If you cannot handle this program and you think this place is a joke, you are excuse to leave with your head down. Who's it going to be?"
None of the recruits flinched. Either they really took this course seriously or they were too afraid to move.
"I didn't think so," the Colonel said. "Now, I would tell you guys the harsh concepts of this course, but that would make me feel like a bad guys, wouldn't it." He then turned to one of the Sergeants behind him. "Sergeant Major, you explain it to them."
The Colonel took a step back and one of the Sergeants in the line behind him stepped forward in the Colonel's place. This tall man wore no sunglasses because the looks in his eyes can strike fear. On his center tab was his rank; three upside-down V chevrons and four U chevrons underneath it. This ranked him as a Sergeant Major. Unlike the Colonel, he still bore his name tape. Clearly seen on his name tape said: 'PERREAULT'.
This tall bulky man was Ryan Perreault. He was over 45 year's old, but still shown looks of youth on his face. His body, however, shown a non-stop routine workout, which also shown fear to the smaller recruits.
"Gentlemen, my name is Sergeant Major Ryan Michael Perreault," Ryan announced in a deeper booming voice. "I have been a Special Forces Weapons Sergeant for over 20 years, and I spend the last five years as a Special Forces Operations Sergeant. However, I highly doubt I see any of you low-lives being able to reach my accomplishments! If you want to be here, you got to move as a team, think extensively, and run at high speeds beyond human limits because I don't see any of you as even humans!"
Suddenly, one of the recruits in the front row whispered quietly to another recruit. Unfortunately, Ryan heard the whispering.
"You!" the 45-year-old Ryan shouted, pointing at the whispering recruit. Ryan carefully, from where he stood, was able to read the recruit's nametape. "How is that pronounced? Poo-root? Pah-rhet?"
"Perot, Sergeant Major," the recruit said when he stood up at attention. His name sounded exactly like the political figure Ross Perot.
"Okay, recruit Parrot," Ryan mocked, "I figured you like to talk, so why don't you tell everyone what you just said."
"Uh, well," Perot started to say nervously, in fear of getting in trouble. "I was telling Recruit Stanson, 'does this guy expect me to run like Sonic the Hedgehog?', Sergeant Major."
All of a sudden, Ryan froze hearing what the recruit said. That was a name Ryan has not heard in a long time. In seconds, he remembered his adventure with the Sonic Underground 20 years ago. It was a long time ago, but he remembered every detail nearly perfectly. Ryan could not help but crack a grin, remembering his times with the triplets. In fact, he remembered, before moving out, he dug up the 'DMD' labeled disk and brought it with him to his new home in North Carolina.
Quickly, Ryan snapped out of it and stared back at the recruit. He shifted his eyes over the rest of the recruits in the bleachers and saw them all staring at him.
"Well, to answer your question, Poo-riot, no one can run as fast as Sonic," Ryan told him, remembering being carried at high speed on Sonic's back. "But I'm willing to give you an exception. You'll pass if you can break the sound-barrier, now sit down and shut up with the whispering. That goes for the rest of you! Colonel, they're yours."
Ryan did an about face and walked back to the group of Sergeants behind the line. The nameless-Colonel walked up to the group again. As the Colonel continued his address, another one of the Sergeant Majors leaned over to Ryan. It was Robert Davis, and he was currently the team's Intelligence Sergeant.
"You okay, Ryan?" Davis asked. "You were out of it for a few seconds."
"I'm okay, I was just recalling some memories," Ryan replied back.
"It's okay, Ryan, you knew very well it happened, just remember the good parts Sonic gave you," Davis whispered back to him. "One day, you may met Sonic again and he will thank you for what you gave him. Only time will tell."
Ryan could not help but smile. In every way, Robert Davis was right. Ryan remembered the best parts of his adventure. He sometimes keep on catching himself checking the Internet if a new season of the show will come back. During most of his free time, he was tried to find ways to get the Dimensional Matter Displacer to work with the technology they have on Earth. Maybe someday, it will work. Until then, Ryan kept on asking himself the same questions. Will he be going back? Will he meet Sonic the Hedgehog again? Even if it is not him, he hopes someone else will get the honor of meeting Sonic and go into the cartoon world and look on the positives of their adventures. He knows that Sonic really does exist, and he constantly asks himself the same question, not if Sonic will recognize him, but does Sonic miss him? Only time will tell. Just like his buddy Davis always said, only time will tell. The question is when.