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Operation Market Garden. 17th September 1944. After the air landings by the 1st Airborne Divison, a group of British soldiers realise they have been separated from the main group. On a gruelling journey to locate them, these soldiers encounter both friend and foe, fighting for their lives until they reach their objective - Arnhem bridge. All seems well, until heavy German reinforcements arrive, battering the British forces with all their might. They are pinned down; no supplies; little ammo; waning time. They keep on fighting - but at what cost?

Thriller / Action
Dominic Owen
Age Rating:

1. The Farm Life - Prologue

The air reeked with a sharp, strong, sour stench of manure. As Aaron paced around, rake in hand, gathering the stray pieces of straw that were scattered across the stable’s floor, he winced at the sickening scent that plagued the building. Even after spending his entire childhood on this very Dorset farm, those long 19 years had not acclimatised his sense of smell to the everyday farmyard flavours of the air.

A yellow orb sat high up in the sky, beaming down its radiant rays onto the Earth below. The sky was a pristine azure blanket; not a cloud in sight. Sweat dribbled down his pale forehead at great speed, advanced down his nose - right to the tip - and collected into one glistening drop. Periodically - every minute or so - this drop would face such little resistance and such great mass, that the surface tension of the saline liquid would simply fall off the point of his nose, and glide graciously to the ground, impacting on the mud, or hay, or gravel beneath his footing.

He swung the rake vigorously back and forth, doing so in such a manner because if he continued to rake with less effort, there is no way in hell he would be able to muster the might from his exhausted corpse to move it at all. He was not exactly what one would call athletic, by any means. His whole one-hundred and eighty-pound being stood at just six foot tall, but anyone in their right mind would guess it to be more like seven. He appeared to tower over you; his stubby legs struggled to bear the weight of his wide figure, the size of two regular men. The surface of his skin shone with a pasty white glare, despite working in the sun a lot. His hands the size of kettlebells gripped the rake firmly; it was not budging.

On top of his extravagant body sat a collection of thick luscious locks, almost black in colour, with a slight curl to them. These, for the most part, sat in a small bun on the rear of his head, keeping them out of the way of his eyes. Every now and then, however, he would blow a loose strand out of his face in irritation.

Standing up straight, hands on his very padded hips, he gazed across the stable floor, proud of his meagre work. After a few moments pause to appreciate the cleanliness - or as clean as stables can be - he turned his back on the stables, tossed the rake against the brown wooden wall, and stumbled out the door, panting for breath due to his meagre fitness level. Regaining breath, he walked slowly across the grass to the path and darted his eyes over the rolling green and amber fields of the Southern-British countryside.

Life was so simple back then. Life was so peaceful back then. No struggles; besides trying to herd those pesky sheep, of course. How he both deeply regrets and praises his former self for making those choices leading up to the present-day one would struggle to understand. The clever thinking of helping his father and becoming a farmhand to dodge conscription was all for nothing when Aaron traded his simple, repetitive work for a role in the British Army. All he wanted to do was to help his country and his family.

Oh! What a bad decision that was...

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