Yes, it's a plot bunny. There's been a small population explosion lately. I'm planning on doing a whole series of these character study type shorts. Of course I started with one of my favorites.
* * * *
BeachHead's dog tags chimed softly as they clinked around his neck. His sharp eyes gazed out across a dusty smokey battlefield, again.. one more battlefield. His ears, partly deafened by the latest bombing that had hit all too close to him, caught the familiar metallic noise and was somehow comforted by it.
As he crouched watchfully behind the bullet-pocked wall, he listened with part of his attention to his commander behind him. Hawk was outlining what he wanted Flint and Duke to do, discussing their options and listening to their information. He simply waited for orders, the faithful hound, leashed and ready.
Those ever-present tags clinked again, and he turned just a bit of his attention to them, savoring the sound, tasting his feelings he had whenever he heard them. Once they'd been a very pridefully displayed symbol of what he'd volunteered for. Later, they'd become the only means of identifying him as a person, his only external means for differentiating himself from all the other soldiers he served with, part of a larger organism.
Now.. now they were the chain around his neck, the outward proof of ownership of his body, mind and soul by the military. He'd become a willing bit of property, as much of cog in the Army machine as a tire on a general's jeep, and as much as it would have pained the original young stubborn boy who'd signed his name on the recruiter's contract, it comforted the man serving a superior, caring for subordinates.
"BeachHead." Hawk's voice tugged the chain, and he went willingly. Told what he was to do, he nodded and voiced his respect as he'd been taught years before.. gathering up the men he was in charge of, he led them off, some to die, some to be wounded, some to kill and maim other humans.
Most of these others were his, trained to the very limits of their abilities, and honed beyond what they thought themselves capable of. When it hadn't been enough for him to serve himself, he'd turned his efforts to creating more cogs for the wheels, finding a very real talent for drawing every nuance of a person's self into useful alignment for the same cause he followed. He'd been disgusted at the waste of young lives, and demanded to be given the opportunity to cut down the losses by properly training those men and women who'd volunteered themselves as he had.
He liked the feeling of having his spot to reside in the universe. It was a comfort to know that he'd always be given what he needed, in return for giving all he had. Serving a cause, serving a purpose, and doing it well.. it drove him heart and soul. Caring for his packmates, his teammates, his fellow soldiers, all the while knowing they would protect him as he did them, pick him up if he fell, care for him if he were hurt, and bury him respectfully when he eventually died, that ingrained knowledge permeated his very nature now.
The dog tags clinked again, and he took comfort in the familiar feel of the chain around his willing neck, the soft bite of his symbolic collar and the soothing knowledge that it tied him to something greater than himself that he enhanced by being a part of. He belonged here, in his Army, of his Army... a member of GI Joe.
* * * *
End fic-let. Told you, short. The others will most likely also be short. They might not follow this exact style either. Depends on what direction the plot bunny hops.