Part 1

Booth awoke to a dull throbbing pain in his chest, he was surrounded by darkness. He took a deep breath and he swore, it felt like he had cracked them all over again. As the pain receded his mind scrambled to piece together what was happening to him, people said ignorance was bliss, but in the army ignorance meant death. Images of a night filled with gunfire flooded his mind. He could hear Peter shout out that he had lost his weapon. He yelled at him to stay down and hold on. He had crawled to Peter and shielded him with his own body while trying to get off as many shots as possible. He remembered the whistling of a mortar shell and the flash of light and the initial bang and then silence that accompanied the explosion. Then there was nothing, he had no idea if Peter had survived or even where he was. However, his gut told him it was nowhere good.

Booth slid his body off the hard cot to sit on the floor, careful to avoid using his arms as that would hurt his chest even more. He looked around what he know recognized as a cell. Even in the dark, the heat was unbearable. He was sticky with what he realized was sweat and blood, which had saturated the bandage wrapped around his chest. Good, he thought, they don't know I'm a sniper, you don't bother bandaging someone if they're headed to the executioner anyways. They'll be coming to interrogate me soon, gotta block out the pain.

Just as he managed to slow his pulse down, a bright light came on and the door opened. Right on time, I wonder what tactic they're going to use to break me. Booth knew them all, he had to, a few of years ago, he was the one coming through the cell door.

His jailer was a tall, fit, older man, he reminded Booth of the sharif from the Rock the Casbah video. He entered and made his way to Booth, and covered his face with a sack. Well, I guess it's not going to be the "I'm on your side" approach, thought Booth as he was forced to his feet and led from his cell to what he supposed would be the interrogation room. With the sight impaired, his sense of smell was heightened and he could smell the stale rosewater smell that was common among the pious but unwashed. His interrogator sat him down in a metal chair and his hands were tied behind his back, forcing his ribs to spread again and Booth to hiss in pain.

His interrogator started with the classic, rapid fire questioning, hoping to catch him off guard and reveal something. Booth knew better than to answer anything beyond his name, rank, and serial number. As the days progressed the interrogator went thorough every tactic in the book. He couldn't get very far as Booth refused to offer anything more.

"It is futile to withhold information Seeley" he would sneer, "Your comrades have given us what we need. It is in your best interest to collaborate with them."

Then the beatings started, he could handle being hit in the head and even his chest, but for some reason the feet were the worst. Maybe it was because he wasn't expecting to be hit there. They would tie him to his cot and beat the soles of his feet. Sometimes he would get hit with pipes and sometimes it was sections of fire hose. His interrogator wouldn't even ask questions, he was just taking out all his anger and frustration on Booth. When the beatings got so bad, he would lose consciousness and have strange dreams. Sometimes they were nightmares, where his interrogator would be replaced by his father who would then turn into himself.

Other times, God would prove merciful and give him comfort. He dreamed about the family he would one day have, there was a boy with curly blond hair, he would come running to him and Booth could see him clearly. Followed by a woman with auburn hair and gray-blue eyes. He would wake up with the feeling of being loved, it didn't matter that he could no longer recall them with detail, he knew who they were, his wife and son.

These dreams were what helped Booth hold on. One night after a particularly harsh beating, Booth was in his dream refuge when suddenly the door to his cell slammed open. Flashlights streamed into the cell. Booth shot up on the cot despite the pain. He squinted at them and realized they were on his side, they were here to rescue him.