AN: I just randomly thought of this, mostly because of all the reasons Skipper makes up about how Manfredi and Johnson died. I figured that he just can't keep up with all the stories. Maybe because it's too painful for him to remember? That's just what I think.
'Private? You should be with Manfredi and Johnson! You know, one up there one down there.' -Skipper, Break-sphere.
"I could've taken 'em!"
That would be Manfredi, of course. Hansome, insane, Manfredi.
Not neccessarily in that order.
We had just finished a mission with the closest call I have ever seen. Skipper, and Rico were at the front. They were trying to ease the atmosphere with jokes, but their hearts weren't really into it. Johnson was behind them, comforting Private, who was having another moral conflict like he usually does after a bad mission.
Where as Manfredi was on his typical adrenaline high, because Manfredi was insane. And I was stuck dealing with it, because Skipper sure wasn't going to.
"You would have died Manfredi. Or is that little inscignifant fact not comprehendable to you?"
He rolled his eyes. "Yeah, sure." He said dryly. "But I'm serious. We could've taken 'em! There was what, ten of 'em left? Eleven?"
"Try fifeteen. With reinforcements coming down the stairs, with our fearless leader fighting blowhole all by himself."
He snorted. "Fifeteen against the six of us? Easy."
"Honestly, Manfredi. You can't see two feet in front of you, Skipper wasn't anywhere close for being back up, Rico was just as crazed as you, Private's inexperienced, and Johnson is always cracking jokes, even when he's being gutted alive."
"I have no flaws."
"OWW!" I screeched, rubbing my arm.
He ignored me, acting like nothing happened. "Besides, I would've helped you if you were sitting there, getting killed."
"Well, yeah of course you would. You would have died in the process too, but hey, we can't have everything."
"Rico?" Manfredi's eyes shone a familiar fierce, daring icy blue. His grin was just as daring, his white teeth looked as if they were about to jump out, too terrified of the person's mouth they were in.
The other smiled back, and vomited the first thing he could think of- kaboom. The red stick landed in Manfredi's hands, a small bit of spit on the end of the cylinder.
Manfredi's laugh was horrifying, almost like a laugh a madman would give before stabbing the unsuspecting victim. It was almost appalling, and in all honestly, he was very appalling. Rico could just see veins on his teammates skin poppingup from the heated blood underneath, warmed by the thought of action that Manfredi craved for.
"Lets go," The man hardly contained his giggle before running off.
"Stand down, Manfredi. Stand down." Skipper ordered, his voice cracking from worry.
Manfredi stood there, just in front of the stairs where the others were escaping. His eyes were bleeding, his panting could be heard above the piercing screams in from the youngest member.
The adrenaline junky laughed. "No way, Skipper. They're gonna die! They're all gonna die!" His last words rang as he charged into battle.
"Manfredi!" Kowalski screamed, with all the air he had in his lungs. His scream turning into a whimper at the end.
Private held his breath. He held his head in his hands. Tears were already streaming down his cheeks, rivers of the salty liquid from his eyes. "Skippah..."
Even their fearless leader had to wipe a tear from his eye, though, he never would have admitted to crying. Finally, he hushed them all by saying, "Men, he went out the way we all thought he would. By laughing."
Nobody said another word. They knew in the hearts that out of all of them, Manfredi was always supposed to be the first to go.
In the end, his end was not selfless. He died, running into battle to fulfill his own selfish needs. What he needed, what he craved, was his undoing.
Manfredi's glass was empty, and could only but filled by blood from his victims.
"Hey, Kowalski? Guess what?" Johnson grinned.
"Chicken butt!" Johnson laughed, earning a puzzled look from the scientist.
"I don't understand. Was that another one of your bad jokes?" He took a moment of thought. "Was that even a joke?"
Johnson glared. "Yeah, duh. You thought it was funny, right Manfredi?"
"No, not really, your funny bone is about as good as your brain power."
"Ouch, Manfredi. Seriously, right through the heart. Your insults are just that bad and original, you know? What about you Private, do you think I'm funny?"
Private smiled sweetly. Like Skipper, Johnson had taken a liking to the youngest. Perhaps even more. You could even say that Johnson loved and cherished Private with a passion. The youngest was like a shining light in his dark, painful past.
"Oh yes Johnson. You're very funny."
Johnson smirked and raised his eyebrows at the other two men. "See? Told you."
Manfredi rolled his eyes. "Oh yeah, Johnson. You showed us up."
"Come on Skipper. A trampoline. Think of it-"
"It'd be bouncy. Soooo bouncy."
"If you're tryig to imply something, I'm offended."
"Me? Subtle? Puh-lease. Subtle is Rico having-"
"Johnson, go away. I'm serious."
"Aw come on, Skipper. How do you feel knowing that-"
"Do you ever really shut up? No, I really wanna know."
"-Rico dated your ex girlfriend? Then broke up with her. I don't know. I'd be pretty pissed."
"It was like I didn't even matter to her! She dumped me like a piece of trash and moved on to the next one! And from my own unit too!"
"You know, she's pretty hot. You think I should go out with her?"
"Do that face again, Skipper! It looks so funny!"
"Johnson, he'll get out, trust me." Skipper encouraged, holding Johnson's arm back from the wreckage of newly on fire building.
"Trust you? He's probably gonna die in there because I trusted you!" The man screeched, pulling his arm away. It was the first time the team had ever seen Johnson cry. The sun did not rise in the west, planets were never square, and Johnson did not cry. Those things the team was always sure of.
Kowalski ran up, seconds after escaping the building. As he was gasping for air, he noticed Johnson. "Is he okay?" He asked.
"No!" Johnson answered, yelling. He turned back to the leader. "Skipper! Please! He's gonna die! I can't let that happen! Someone like Private can't die! Especially not like this!"
Skipper gave a stern look. "He'll get out. Rico is still in there and will make sure of it."
Johnson stared back at the building. It was supposed to be a siple mission, or at least that's how it started out. 'In and out', Skipper had said. Last time he'd listen to Skipper. The only thing in his life that was pure good, could, or is in his mind, was dying.
And hell, if that was going to happen, he'd die with that one innocent part of his life.
"No," Johnson stated, starting to jog towards the building, "I'll make sure he gets out."
Skipper stared at the two mission reports to fill out. Both included the deaths of two of his close friends, and teammates.
Both were complete opposites. One was a cold, horrific, and had died for selfish needs. The other was fun and laid back, meeting his end in a selfless act.
Manfredi, in his mind, was fearless. Also, the leader had to admit to munipulate his dark nature to win in battles. He was also very violent, which is probably why he was such a good friend with Rico. Probably the only person to find a bit of sanity in Rico. Even so, Manfredi's life depended on the thrill he received from a battle. Which, was in the end, his undoing.
Skipper knew Manfredi all his life. From chicklets, to the end of his life, Skipper was always beside the nut. He remembers laughing with his friend, grinning at eachother when a hot girl walked past them, or even saving eachothers lives in the darkest of times, and also having fights with him. Yes, the fearless leader felt a tear coming on remembering his friend who take anyone, and get anyone he wanted.
Johnson was probably the comic relief of the team. He would spend hours trying to get Kowalski to at least smile at a joke, and even spoke out puns while in the midst of battle. It was actually very amusing, and Skipper will admit that he felt the group was more at ease with him there. Even though sometimes (most times) he'd get on people's nerves, Johnson alays found a way out of it, with really only his charm and winning grin.
He did have a painful past, however. A street thug, really. Johnson never talked openly about his past, but they all new. What he most liked to talk about was his friend Casino, a victim of gang rape, and an awful suicide. Everyone also knew that he was trying to replace Casino, with Private. Which ultimately, was the cause of his end. In all honestly, everyone suspected Johnson saving Private was just a second chance to save Casino.
Skipper put the files in the unfinished pile. He didn't feel like filling them out today.