Disclaimer: I don't own GI Joe
This is a rather short one shot. I'm also in the process of writing the next chapter of Silence, for those who are waiting for an update.
It was curious how two people could bond over something as simple as boxes.
Of course, Beach Head and Lifeline didn't necessarily fit into any known definition of "normal." (Or, arguably, anyone in GI Joe for that matter.)
One was the most feared psychopathic ranger and drill instructor in the history of the United States Army. Spoken, with hushed voices and out of hearing range, was the general agreement that Ole 'Blood and Guts' George S. Patton had nothing on Sergeant Major Wayne R. Sneeden. Of course, Beach Head also had a habit of saving your 'blood and guts', as did his pacifist compatriot.
The other, an 'I don't believe in war and won't do anything that might lead to the death of another human being' soldier, had oddly chosen to hang around with an outfit that did just that. He also had a frightening reputation for being able to track down rogue, fleeing patients (ninjas included) and haul them back into the confines of the Pit infirmary.
On the surface, at least, they couldn't be more different.
The revelation that they might have something in common was after a particularly hot and humid day, in which Beach Head had inflicted a particularly grueling PT session. As a result of a previous incident involving dry ice, flour purloined from the kitchens, a can of beer, and a flamethrower, a quarter of the Greenshirts (plus Dusty and Dial-Tone) were forced to crawl through mudpits wearing hot pink leotards and tiaras.
Beach Head rather prided himself on his creativity.
"I swear," Lifeline had said, "You have a special box just for this occasion." It had been after the fact when the two men were grabbing lunch. "Beach Head's Box of Torment," he'd added. Wayne Sneeden had merely chosen to raise an amused eyebrow under his balaclava.
"What?" Edwin Steen had asked. The ranger smirked at him.
"My 'box of torment?'" he'd then drawled. "Says the man who forced Sgt. Slaughter to sleep in Little Mermaid bed sheets after he attempted to escape? And then threatened him with a catheter if he tried it again? You're accusing me of having a 'box of torment'?"
There had been a long pause.
"I might possibly have a box," the medic had finally admitted.
"I knew it." Oh, the smirk underneath that balaclava had been all too evident.
"So…" Lifeline said after a moment, grinning as well. "What about you?" The ranger's eyes had glinted with clear amusement.
"Of course I have one," he'd answered. "Why wouldn't I?"
"Can I see it?" Lifeline had asked.
"Only if I can see yours."
"Just as long as you know that anything in it may be used against you," the medic had responded.
And thus instantaneous friendship had occurred. Well, maybe not instantaneous. It had been a work in progress for a while. Perhaps more accurately, a common bond of inflicting strange and cruel punishments was born.
Needless to say, however, a rivalry of sorts was born. He who had the more creatively sadistic box was the winner. The contents of the said boxes, however has only been known to the two men. The only other Joe to have laid eyes upon it was Doc, now since deceased. As such, the rest of the Pit has never been privy to the current instruments of torture until they are inflicted upon misbehaving Joes.
Legend speaks of the existence of these boxes, but though they've searched high and low, even the ninjas have yet to find them.
Both boxes are in fact stored safely in an infirmary cabinet, underneath a pile of catheters and female hygiene items, placed there solely for female patients. (Because in no way would even Snake Eyes willingly touch a catheter or a tampon.)
As a matter of principle, Beach Head never inflicts the same embarrassing punishment twice, unless a sufficiently long time has passed since its last use. However, as the Joes were loath to discover, the two men apparently traded torture implements.
Five months after several Joes were forced to do KP in tie died muumuus, the same hideous garments had shown up in the infirmary. It was in fact Storm Shadow who discovered this. After an ill fated escape attempt (he'd made it to the next level before his stitches had opened up and blood poured forth upon the floor), the Arashikage ninja had been forced to exchange his hospital gown for a lovely muumuu.
It's said that Storm Shadow managed to smuggle the muumuu out after release from incarceration and burned it with joyful glee.
Sometimes, unknown to everyone else, the two men periodically test the items, particularly the ones in Lifeline's box. The then medic, now a doctor, had once theorized that if he was going to inflict bad movies and music on misbehaving patients, then he should at least know how bad they actually were.
Twenty minutes into Babes in Toyland, however, the two men had called it quits and chucked the movie in the box. They had then spent the next two hours watching The Quiet Man with the vague hope of washing it from their minds. (Beach Head had in fact wanted to watch The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, but Lifeline had stubbornly refused on the grounds that it had 'unnecessary violence.').
(Though Wayne finds this odd, as Edwin has a hypocritical love of John Wayne movies. He strongly suspects that Lifeline is in fact biased against Clint Eastwood.)
Babes in Toyland has since become one of Lifeline's 'last resort' punishments.
As a side note, Lifeline does in fact possess another box. This box, however, contains items such as good movies and books, which he can use to reward good patients. (Or to distract bored ones.)
The question currently upon your mind, however, must be 'what evil are they plotting now?' Well, I suppose that depends upon your definition of evil.
"A Wonder Woman costume? Where the hell did you get a Wonder Woman costume?"
"It was on sale after Halloween," Lifeline protested. "I thought it'd make a great addition to your collection." Beach Head's eyes lit up as he examined the costume before adding it to his box.
Later that day, as life was funny that way, both men had an opportunity to utilize the costume. Before a certain sailor was scheduled to come in for a urine test, he'd thought it would be quite hysterical to drink two quarts of red food coloring and then to scream in 'pain' during the said test.
Once the medical staff realized that it was not actually blood, Shipwreck's comeuppance was rather quick.
He finds that the Wonder Woman costume is in fact rather itchy and does nothing to prevent mud from seeping into the private areas.