{{ contest.story_page_sticky_bar_text }} Be the first to recommend this story.
Get Free Copy

100 free copies left

This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.

0
Free copy left
You can read our best books
Mae_Thann would love your feedback! Got a few minutes to write a review?
Write a Review

Sergeant

By Mae_Thann All Rights Reserved ©

Action / Scifi

Sergeant

I don’t know how long I’ve been playing. Nor do I care.

Bang-bang-bang-click!

Draw back. Reload. Pause. Peek out. Fire.

Bang. Bang-bang!

“Perimeter secured; let’s move!”

Yes. I talk out loud when I play video games. You would too if you got into something as intense as Blitzkrieg: World at War. The first-person shooters of yesteryear are antiques compared to this, the MMOs obsolete. And the effects? It’s like living in a whole new world right in the comforts your bedroom. Even the uniform that comes with the game adds to virtual reality by stimulating the body to sense what isn’t really there.

Advancing. Keep the gun up. Try the door. Figures: it’s locked. “Break it down!”

A few from my troop obey while the others keep their guns trained on the windows. I step aside to rifle through the pockets of a fallen sentry.

Technically, I should wait till after the mission to loot, since this game runs on real-time and neither my fellow PCs nor the system’s NPCs are going to wait for me. But I’ve got a quick moment now, so why not?

I pull out a wallet and flip through it. A hundred-some dollars. Should help me upgrade to a new gun.

A gravelly voice growls through the radio in my ear. “Sergeant.”

I almost salute out of habit.

“Wait for backup. We’ll be there in five.”

“Yes, sir, Major Stone, sir!” I pocket the cash and look at the doors. Merely dented. Pathetic. “Blast it down, Jack!”

Don’t look at me like that. Five minutes is a long time to wait.

“Get clear!” my corporal warns.

I scramble back, boots scraping against the gravel, and take cover. I watch him swing his arm over his head, then duck down. The boom that follows is deafening and the explosion’s heat flashes through my uniform.

That’s right. Be impressed. Virtual reality is that realistic now.

I ready my rifle. “Let’s go get ‘em!” I kick in a remaining bit of door and we surge in. Enemy troops everywhere. I almost wish I’d waited for backup after all, but whatever. If we can take over this building ourselves, we’ll get more points, a higher ranking, and more loot.

“Open fire!” I command, but my goggles already struggle to compensate for the bright flashes that erupt from our ranks. As helpful as the interactive goggles can be in pinpointing targets, it still helps to actually see. My precision flies out the shattered windows and I just shoot. Sounds of resistance die and I lead the charge up a flight of old wooden stairs. Round the corner, duck the gun, and let the next guy deal with him. Grab the civilian and toss him to the floor. Kneel. Pick a target.

I hear my squadron’s fire as they shoot over my head. “Not the civilians!” I shout at them.

Too late. One civilian – no, a hostage – goes down. I grit my teeth as a significantly large red number hovers, representing a heavy loss to the squad’s accumulated points. Regular civvies are just NPCs that pretty much spawn as you approach. Hostages, on the other hand… that dumb noob will regret it, I’ll make certain!

Clear the floor. Ascend the stairs. The steel door at the top is shut. Ease a grenade into my hand. Bite down on the pin and hurl the explosive. Too close, too–!

I throw my arms up but not soon enough. Something slices through the left side of my goggles and causes them to glitch before it bites down into the bone just below my eyebrow.

Seriously, whatever they put into these Blitzkrieg uniforms is amazing. I can’t begin to describe the effects. Or the artificially-induced pain.

I peer through the goggles between glitches and make out the insignia of the Special Forces waiting for us beyond the smoke. With a whoop, I push forward. My eyelid begins to itch, but there’s no way I’m stopping now. Not this close to the mission’s conclusion.

My goggles aren’t adjusting at all: one moment, they’re too bright; the next, completely dark. My eye feels oddly heavy. I throw out all care for an accuracy score and just keep right on firing. HQ, prepare for a party ‘cause this mission is so accomplished! For the fleetest of moments, my goggles reveal the scene and my heart leaps. Then it disappears as the itch turns into a sudden sting so terrible that I stumble and fall to my knees. All gunfire has ceased completely and I hear the boots of the reinforcement squad, but my eye hurts too much to care. I pull off the goggles….

Oppressively bright, blanched light. A sharp piece of metal and something warm on my hand. The same stuff, apparently, as what I kneel in. A long hunk of warm metal by my side. Blurs of multiple irregular shapes on the floor around me, each marked with red. Like my hand. Upright towers wearing boots scattered about the room. Scrutinizing eyes, watching, daring me to crawl closer to one of the reddened things. A shout fills my lungs, but not the air. My stomach churns, but not from thrill. My heart pounds, but not with adrenaline. Eyes. Cold eyes, startling eyes. Everywhere, eyes staring. Waiting for me to wake up from this nightmare. Or to sink into the darkness that threatens to block out this light. I wish it would. Anything but this….

The darkness takes shape: the shadow of a man, strangely familiar and massively muscular. Sharp, chiseled features and a grim visage. A beefy hand and a pistol.

“Mission accomplished,” a voice, familiar and gravelly, intones. Two dark eyes fixate on me. “As for you, Sergeant….”

An arm – my arm – shielding my face. And stripes on my sleeve. Three of them. My heart stops. A bang and something burning into my chest. A cry thrusts itself from my lungs and leaves me breathless.

The boots spin away from me, taking the world along for the ride. “Move out!” the voice barks. Feet tramp out and away into foggy silence. All is still. Too still.

As a serpent crushes its prey, so I clutch my damaged goggles and somehow find the energy to curse them.

I don’t know how long I’ve been playing. Or how I got here or how this scene came to be. But lying here in pain too great for the effects-inducing wires of my uniform, I know only one thing.

This is for real.

Mission accomplished.

Write a Review Did you enjoy my story? Please let me know what you think by leaving a review! Thanks, Mae_Thann
Continue Reading
Further Recommendations

taosgw74: If this is the authors first attempt at writing, I'm floored. I was engrossed in the plot from the get go.

SandraHan1: This story is very descriptive, with vivid scenes from the very beginning, which made for a good scene setting. I love the symbolism in names, such as “Naysayers”, “Hadd”, etc . The story itself is revolutionary, intriguing, emotional and exciting. I was very pleased to see that there is a happy ...

Dina Husseini: It was a great hook. I do not like reading scifi because they end up being like all the rest but this one kept me wanting more.

Tiffany Thomson: This story is not something I would normally pick up and read but I'm so glad I did, I wasn't able to put it down and my husband was yelling at me at 3am to put it down and go to bed (just waited for him to doze back off before picking it back up) I really hope Natalie brings out another book eit...

Pablo Rojas: Love the story, at the end it is a western story, simple, yet giving hints and pieces of the situation that is happening all over ravencroft´s universe. easy to read and always keeping with the main stream story I want to keep reading about, Olafson´s adventures.

snowview03: This is the first book I have read on this app and I loved it! When I read the title I thought about the hunger games, but this novel is so much more. Some book have a comparison between other books that fallow like premises so i will do my own: Arena has the compellingly emotional stresses and t...

Laraine Smith: This should be a movie! You are talented! It is that good! Keep it up! It is visual! It grabbed me! Don't give up!

ericaporamoralcine: La trama es muy interesante y original y eso ya dice muchísimo cuando todos tratan de triunfar con ideas ya trilladas.No puedo opinar en detalle sobre la gramática, porque a pesar de entender el inglés a la perfección, la falta de uso en cuanto a lectura y diálogo hacen que me maneje bastante mal...

ElusiveBadwolf: I loved this book so much! It's a shame that i already came to the end of this. I really enjoyed the story, and i liked it how everything became in the end. It was a great book and i can say that you are a great writer too. Keep it that way and i think you can make it in the writing business!

More Recommendations

Sara Grover: When I first started reading, it was a bit slow; though only because it was so information intense and fast-paced in trying to describe how this complex galactic corporation/government like entity controls known space. I would suggest maybe adding a preface to better educate the reader to help av...

PaulSenkel: If you like Arthur C. Clarke's Odyssey, especially The Final Odyssey, then you will probably also enjoy this book. I definitely did.It does, however, address a more adolescent public than the above-mentioned book.I enjoyed the story and finished it in a few days. The overall situation on earth an...

Roy Jenner: I was pleased to join the action where this B-17 was limping back across the English Channel defying all odds. Obviously written by a person more than familiar with the interior of the Flying Fortresses that were familiar in the skies of Southern England during World War 2. Plenty of action here ...

263Adder: Okay so I adore this story. I only knocked one star off plot for historical inaccuracies because I'm a bit of a stickler for that. The ending broke my heart though, considering you already changed history couldn't you (SPOILER) change it a bit more and have them together!!!! I want an alternative...

Hawkebat: Playing both Kotor I & II and Swtor I found the story line interesting and it held me until chapter 35 Very good story and plot flow until then, very few technical errors. I felt that the main character was a bit under and over powered, as it fought for balance. The last few chapters felt too f...

About Us:

Inkitt is the world’s first reader-powered book publisher, offering an online community for talented authors and book lovers. Write captivating stories, read enchanting novels, and we’ll publish the books you love the most based on crowd wisdom.