Summary: Charise Raquin is posing as her brother, Micah, in the war so he didn't have to leave his family. When she gets moved to a new squad with a new mission, she thinks it's going to be routine-when in reality, it's anything but. Faced with new friendships, the death of a close friend, and her secret possibly being exposed; Charise has to decide if this is really the place for her-not to mention, she has to make sure Saving Private Ryan isn't the last thing she ever does.
Author's Note: So, I saw the movie last year for the first time, and now I am thoroughly addicted to it (: The story will pick up soon, I promise! Rate&Review please(:
The sun was shining bright, but the air was still a frigid cold. I shivered a bit despite all my gear; usually I was sweating my ass off by now, but it seemed a cold front had taken over the area. I shoved my helmet down on my head, my hair tucked securely underneath, as I fixed the strap under my chin. I shaded my eyes as I glanced around, there were tons of soldiers here…I felt out of place, and definitely in the minority. Most likely, actually, the only one of my kind here; but that's a whole different story. I was just about to take a seat on a rather comfortable looking rock-yes, that's what my definition of comfortable had resorted to!-when I heard my commanding officer yell "Micah! Front and center!"
Now, let me explain before you become confused-my name isn't Micah; actually, it's Charise. That's pronounced Care-is, NOT chair-ese. God, I hate when people mess up my name. Now, I thought it was impossible to get into the army, not that I would have wanted to join in the first place. The only reason I did was for my brother. His name is Micah, and he has a family-wife, two little girls, dog, nice house, the whole shebang. Well, one day I got a letter sent to my house that said they wanted to draft him, since they needed men in the army. I wasn't going to let him go, I mean, he's really religious and against the war. Me? Well, I'm not saying I enjoy blowing people up or anything, but I at least would have less of a problem with it than he would. And he had everything laid out for him already, people to miss him. Sure, my family would miss me, but I didn't really have anything going for me. So I packed up and told my parents I was going to visit my old friend Cheyenne, who lived two states over-I met her on vacation one year, and we still kept in touch through letters. By the time my parents got in touch with her, I was long gone…I wanted a clean cut, so Micah couldn't drag me back and take my place.
By now, I've been in the army for two months. I was surprised I had managed to stay alive for this long, to be honest, but of course I was glad I still was. What my officer could have wanted, though, I wasn't sure. Well, there was only one way to truly find out.
"Private Micah Raquin reporting, sir."
"Good, good…Raquin, I have a special mission for you. This is Captain Miller," General Marshall proclaimed, introducing the man. I gave him a quick nod, and then looked back to the General. "He's been given a mission straight from the top, and needs a group of men to go along with him. The standard group is of eight men, but I'm suggesting he take on one more, just to be safe. Are you up to the task?"
"Yes, General," I told him, giving a quick nod. After being told I had ten minutes to gather my belongings and meet him at the gate, I turned to gather my few supplies.
I never carried much with me, it seemed to me to much stuff would just hold me back and weigh me down. I only had a small bag with the usual supplies, my gun, and my necklace I always had on me-not that it would give me away. It was a silver symbol, one meaning protection that resembled a sword; it was held on a black, rope-like chain. I usually kept it tucked under my shirt, and I patted it to make sure it was there. After I was convinced everything was in my hand, I turned to head for the gate and the Captain.
As I approached, I noticed pretty much everybody looked at me curiously. The other seven guys seemed not much older than me(and I was only nineteen), probably around early to mid-twenties, maybe one exception who was a Sergeant. I gave them a simple nod, which some of them returned. I skipped the formalities, as did the Captain; he seemed to notice I wasn't much for introductions. Instead of having pointless chitchat, we turned and headed down the road.
I mostly kept to myself along the way, but it was evident the other new member of the squad had no such issues with blabbing people's ears off. He hadn't taken the threat of getting his head blown off seriously, and bugged everybody. Mostly, they brushed him off, and in the end he came back and fell into step beside me.
"H-Hey there…I'm Upham," he said in a cherry tone, looking hopeful. I gave him a slight smile, trying to maintain my masculine façade. "Hey," I said absently, and then added "Raquin," as an introduction. He nodded, recognizing the fact I wasn't going to tell him off or threaten him, and started going on about some book he was going to write.
"Corporal, what's your book about?" a voice asked, and I glanced up. It was the medic, who seemed distantly interested; but it was nice of him to at least try to be kind to Upham…I felt bad for the guy.
"It's supposed to be about the sense of brotherhood that forms between soldiers during a war," Upham replied, a bit of a smile crossing his face due to someone being interested in it. Caparzo, however, wasn't so impressed. "Brotherhood?" He jeered, while most of the rest of the squad burst out into fits of laughter. Caparzo shook his head before adding "What do you know about brotherhood ! Hey, Mellish, get a load of this guy!" He turned back to Upham, and said, "Why don't you ask the captain where he's from?"
"Yeah, ask the Captain," Mellish chimed in with a bit of a smirk. "He'll tell you everything you want to know."
I started to tune them all out, my head staying down as I walked along. This was going to be quite a trip, I could tell that already. I mean, we had the assholes, the over friendly guy that didn't even notice he was being made fun of, and…well…everyone else. What did I do to deserve being stuck in this group?
"You okay?" A voice asked, and I looked up to see the medic next to me. I gave him a quick nod, and he shrugged. "Just making sure. I mean, the only other new guy is taking adjusting pretty hard…but you seem to be doing better."
"I'm trying. If I'm going to be working with you guys, I might as well be on good terms, right?" I questioned him, and he nodded. "I see your point," he agreed, and then I tuned in to what the others were saying.
"I mean, where's the sense is risking the lives of the nine of us to save one guy?" the guy I remember them calling Reiben asked, and Captain Miller didn't look at him. Instead, the Captain generally asked, "Anybody wanna answer that?"
"Think about the poor bastard's mother!" Wade said, glancing at Reiben.
Reiben, on the other hand, didn't seem amused in the slightest bit. "Hey, Doc, I got a mother, all right? You got a mother, Jackson got a mother, the girlish lookin' guy back there got a mother, and even the Captains got a mother!...well, maybe not the Captain, but the rest of us do."
Even though I am a girl, I've been doing all I could to blend in, and his comment stung. I narrowed my eyes and cleared my throat. "Uh, girlish looking guy?" I asked, voice icy.
"Well, yeah. I mean, you got some pretty womanly features, kid," he said, smirking. "You look like a girl."
"Yeah? And you look like a piece of shit, so I'd say we're about even," I jabbed back, hiding my smirk. Reiben turned, stopping in front of my, face clearly betraying his angry emotions. "What'd you say to me, kid?" he asked, looking more dangerous since I'd seen him look so far. I stood my ground, arms crossed, and looking up at him. "I SAID, you look like a piece of shit!"
"You little fucker…!" he mumbled, bringing back his fist. Luckily for me, Horvath grabbed his arm and pulled him away. "Calm down, Reiben; just go walk it off…" He pushed him in the opposite direction, up towards the Captain, while I simply smirked; I was a bit proud of myself, to be honest. Apparently, one of the others wasn't.
"Reiben's not the one you should be picking a fight with, kid," a voice drawled, and I glanced up to see the sniper, Jackson. "He's got a mean temper, and won't go easy on you for any reason."
I gave a bit of a shrug, trying to brush it off like I really didn't care. "Uh, thanks, or whatever. I'll keep that in mind for next time," I told him, and he simply nodded.
Well. They were all just little chatterboxes, weren't they?
I continued along beside Jackson in silence, until Upham seemed to pipe up out of nowhere. "There's not to reason why, there's just to do and die."
"La la, la la, la la, la la, la la; what the fuck is that supposed to mean, Corporal, huh? Are we all supposed to die?" Mellish mocked, looking at Upham like he was crazy.
I had to say, as much as I pinned him as a dick; I had to agree with Mellish. Why the hell would Upham decide to say something like that as we're going off to war? Way to be sensitive, you know?
"He's talking about our duty as soldiers," Captain Miller said, ignoring Mellish's comment. "We all have orders, and we have to follow them; that even supersedes your mother."
"Yes, sir. Thank you, sir," Upham said quickly, thinking the Captain was defending him.
"Even if you think the missions FUBAR, sir?" Reiben asked, his cocky smirk plastered on his face.
"Especially if you think the missions FUBAR," Miller said, smiling a tiny bit.
"What's FUBAR mean?" Upham questioned, looking from one man to the other questioningly.
"Huh? Oh, it's German," Mellish said snidely, causing a few of the men to chuckle. Man, this guy was oblivious…apparently he was good at translating other languages, but not common acronyms. In my short time here, even I had picked up the meaning. And that's really saying something!
It was quiet for a few moments again, and then from next to me I heard "Sir, I have an opinion on this matter." I glanced up at Jackson out of the corner of my eye, curious as to what he would say.
"Well, by all means, share it with the squad."
"Well, from my way of seeing things, sir, this entire mission is a serious misallocation of valuable military resources," Jackson said smoothly, glancing around a bit. "Well, it seems to me, sir, that God gave me a special gift, made me a fine instrument of warfare."
Miller shook his head some, a smile tugging at the corners of his mouth. "Reiben, pay attention. Now this is the way to gripe. Continue, Jackson."
"Well, what I mean by that, sir, is if you were to put me and this here sniper rifle anywhere up to and including one mile of Adolf Hitler with a clear line of sight, sir- Pack your bags, fellas. War's over."
"That's brilliant, bumpkin," Reiben said with mock enthusiasm; as much as I instantly disliked the guy, I bit my lip to keep a tiny smile from forming. Not that I didn't like Jackson-he and Wade seemed the most likeable on the squad-and he had a point, it was just in a way Reiben reminded me of myself. Making snide remarks here and there, I mean.
Reiben looked over at Miller, and asked "Hey, so, what about you, Captain? I mean, don't you grip at all?"
"I don't gripe to you, Reiben. I'm a captain. There's a chain of command. Gripes go up, not down. Always up. You gripe to me, I gripe to my superior officer, so on, so forth. I don't gripe to you. I don't gripe in front of you," he finished, looking away.
Reiben wasn't to be deterred, and pressed on. "I'm sorry, sir, but, uh…let's say you weren't a captain or maybe I was a major. What would you say then?"
"Well, in that case, I'd say this is an excellent mission, sir, with an extremely valuable objective, sir, worthy of my best efforts, sir. Moreover…I feel heartfelt sorrow for the mother of Private James Ryan and I am willing to lay down my life and the lives of my men, especially you, Reiben, to ease her suffering." Miller finished his retort with a smirk, not even looking at the defeat plastered on Reiben's face.
"He's good," Mellish said as if he was just realizing this, nodding some. Caparzo looked at Mellish and smirked. "I love him," he added, before the two started making kissing noises at eachother.
Oh, yeah. I was in for one hell of an adventure.