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This Is War

By William Joseph All Rights Reserved ©

Thriller / Action


War, it defines us and everything that we do. Those who wish to live in peace must always be prepared to fight and defend it; otherwise, you lose everything. The United States for too long has gotten involved in others affairs while our politicians back home cause distrust and freeze up the political process because of party and personal differences. Our economy has begun to spiral down again, and while we waste millions every day on fighting other countries battles on the other side of the world, we for too long forgot to keep our eyes on those nearest to us.

The world watched in horror as economies and financial institutions around the world began to fall one by one. Europe and Asia markets busted and many nations turned to self-sufficiency to focus on their own civil unrest and to lick their own wounds rather than working with other countries which has proved to be unsuccessful for far too long. However somehow, through all of this, the United States managed to hold on while still fighting, what many deemed as useless battles and fights a world away while many suffered back at home.

Russia too had fallen into an absolute state of economic destruction with the country falling completely apart as other nations across the world fell. A new militaristic regime rose up and took over consisting of many of their high up Generals in the military turning on the government in a coupe, similar to that of Russian Revolutions in the past. The United States continuous involvement in others affairs, even as other nations began to turn all of their attention inwards, caused hostility to already hardened relations between Russia and the United States. So with the new militaristic power in control of the country, Russia amassed a massive military and began an Arms race with the United States again mirroring tensions such as that of the Cold War, only this time much larger while the United States still dwindled about in its foreign oil wars. Eventually Russia’s military in fact surpassed, at least in manpower, that of the United States while technologically the nations stayed locked toe to toe.

Several years have passed since the beginning of the new Cold War. Russia’s military might has reached an all-time height which many in the United States predicted was well past the point of financial and resource sustainability. The United States called for diplomatic negotiations but Russia would only stall and continue to storm out of talks, many before they even began and only to showboat and draw media attention in an attempt to paint the United States as the aggressor and as the ones unwilling to compromise or cooperate.

“The tension between the two nations was a tinder box awaiting to erupt.”

At least that’s what the political analysts were saying on the news. part, agreed with them in some ways, which is why I decided to answer a familiar feeling that I had been entertaining in my head for the last several months. I had felt like going back into the military, having been in there several years ago when I was just eighteen, with me being twenty four now. My first time around was straight out of high school, however at the time I was strongly against our wars that we were fighting and wasting so much money and life on them, and mentally I wasn’t as prepared as I had thought that I was. I also injured my knee colliding with a wall on one of the obstacle courses in basic training but hid it well and it didn’t really begin to affect me until after I decided that it wasn’t for me and got myself out. I got an entry level discharge, but would always be allowed back in, and now I was going back. In part I missed it even though I wasn’t in for very long. I had finally felt like I had belonged for nearly the first time in my entire life. Living in Philadelphia was always rough, but my childhood was pretty average. I couldn’t really complain about it, but when my family decided to get heavier into the drinking and eventually when drugs entered the mix, I had had enough. I was always patriotic and wanted to join the military, even from a very young age. So as soon as I turned eighteen, I did. When I got out though, I had no idea what to do, or where to go, so I stayed with my family again until I could get a job and move out and get away from the mess again, which thankfully I eventually did. Now with everything going on and with being on my own, it was time that I went out and did something again, and I felt that this time the timing was right to join and that it was time that I answered that calling that was always in the back of my mind.

I yawned and stretched as I turned the TV off. I decided to head out to my patio; or rather my so called two feet of standing space that jutted out of the side of my apartment near the kitchen with the streets below. I opened the window and climbed out onto the patio, and I stood there looking down at the puddles in the street below made by the rainstorm that had been going on all day long but that had finally subsided. I noticed how black and white this part of town looked. Not literally black and white, but it seemed so flushed after a storm and there wasn’t much color around here to begin with. The only color came from the trees extending from the park and the few sporadic taxis that passed by. Everything else was solid, streets of black, business people of browns, dark gray’s and blues, and other darker themed colors. Cars all black and white, owned by the richer folk yet the kind who don’t even dream about commuting so they live in two bit apartments or townhouses. The buildings were really old too, not just by their looks but by the inside feel. They were all just dull and dark bricked and the insides were all off white painted or had beige wallpaper. It was quite the inner city interior design nightmare, but it was also manageable, usually.

On the streets below the sidewalks seemed dead, even though the rain is gone and the sun was just barely protruding through the clouds up above, there weren’t many midday walkers. Not even any hikers on the path in the park. As for cars there weren’t many on the road, one or two cars and limos passed by every now and again but it was mostly just parked cars scattered here and there. As I stood there time passed pretty fast and what had felt like only twenty minutes was actually an hour and a half. With it reaching 2:00 p.m. I headed back inside, back to my couch and then turned the TV back on.

I sat there and put my feet up, flicking the channels for what seemed like forever until I caught the story on the local news about more fatalities from battles occurring in our countries waged wars over sea’s. It was as if it was a part of daily entertainment and the way the media portrayed it made you have no other choice but to either ignore it, or become numb to the constantly climbing death toll. After the story ended your basic politics story came on, then your stock market plummets and then finally the weather reports both three day and seven day forecasts; both saying sunny weather but they were never right anyway. I continued to watch the TV as time flew by and the time reached about five so I got up and headed towards the freezer in the kitchen to get myself a TV dinner.

I popped it into the microwave, waited for it to finish and then sat down again on the couch and ate it while watching some silly UFO stories on a random channel that I had discovered. Once that had gone off and by the time I had finished my so called dinner, I then got up and dumped the remnants into the trash while glancing at the clock which now read seven p.m. I turned the TV off before I went into my room and quickly climbed into bed. As I laid there for a few minutes enjoying the comfort of the bed I then pulled the covers up and slowly dozed off as the infamous noises of city nightlife in the distance dwindled down into absolute silence.

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