Home > Letters from the Heart, series > Letters from the Heart 4

Letters from the Heart 4

Alex, my love,

We’ve been here a week and I was right about the terrain – we are somewhere in the mountains and we are high up, above 10k feet, if I had to guess. We have really good gear and I really don’t feel the chill as I expected I would. We got some new stuff on this trip I had never seen nor heard of. You’ve seen the nic patches. It is like that, but we have several colors of them – yellow, red, green, blue, and black.

We were issued 4 of each of the colors except blue and black, of which we have only one each. I have only used one of them and on a night mission, it increased my already good night vision to even clearer. It was like I was one with the night – I heard every animal, smelled every plant, and saw all movement. It was surreal.

It snowed here last night. We went out this morning to greet the new dawn and the glittering white gave us all a touch of snow-blindness as the morning sun bounced off it. This was the clearest morning I can remember seeing in a long time.

I meant to send this the other day, but have not had the chance to write for a few. All of our missions have been recon, but we saw fighting last night. I don’t see how they saw us. They were moving so slow that it was almost too easy to creep up on them. Maybe that was the tell – it was meant to be too easy.

There we were, almost on top of them, and all of a sudden there were shouts and lights came out of nowhere. People were all around us in a second and then the firing began. Don’t worry about me – I’m fine now, but for a second there I thought I was done. It was like the tilt-a-whirl – as I spun my head around, the world blurred against me, then all went blinding white and I was on the ground. A bullet had ripped through my left thigh, barely missing the bone. For what felt like a whole minute, all I could see and feel was white hot lightning tearing me in two. Suddenly, the shouts of my team filled my ears and I snapped back. I had to do something, so I violated orders and slapped a red derm on my thigh and a green derm on my left bicep.

All of a sudden, the pain moved all the way to the back of the bus – it was still screaming, but I could get back to work. One of those special moments happened just after that; One of those moments when the world slows to a crawl and in that moment you can take it all in: the sounds, the people, their movement, where they are about to be, what they are about to do, and you have a second to make a difference.

I guess they had counted me out, because when I leapt to my feet and unloaded, they were caught completely by surprise. After taking down the ones I could see, I started moving to the other two of my mates and administered to them. With my movements and the surprised shooters, we gained the upper hand and quelled them quickly.

The Doc read me the riot act for combining derms as I did, but the Captain promoted me to First Lieutenant. I have been taken off the active list while my leg heals, but what a week I have had.
I am in the bed in the hospital and wish you could come see me. I miss you.

I love you and I am only a heartbeat away.
Michael

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